Commentary: Post-film. =) Sorry for not posting many of these. Am I still a fan? Of course. Always. I'm just a bit ill right now, and busy too. Still, though, I'll try to scrape some time and energy together to do a few more snippets before I'm finished.
On another note, thank you so much, everyone, for giving me 100 reviews on this work. It's the first time anything of mine has ever garnered that many, and I feel both deeply appreciative and incredibly awed. Know you have my astounded gratitude!
Word NINETEEN: New
Rubble everywhere, gray stacks and scattered clumps of it. Disaster area. Closed off. Yellow-taped. Familiar, familiar, familiar—Roxanne picked her way easily through the wreck until she came to the cause of it. Balling her fingers into a fist, she knocked on the leg of her boyfriend's newest enormous robot walker-fighter-thingy. Tung-tung-tink sang the call. Overhead, the glass dome of the massive machine hissed and swung upward. From its fogged interior a thin figure climbed, hands grasping.
He vaulted, landed next to her. "Well," he said, thrusting his thumbs into his collar to neaten it, "that went better than expected, I thought." His eyes rolled to her and the corner of his mouth twitched. So did Roxanne's fingers—she longed to touch his smile.
"Decent," she agreed. "But you missed a spot."
She pointed. Megamind turned a little on his heel to follow the line of her gesture, and together they studied the small spire of stone nearby that was indeed still standing, a snarl of spurting pipe twisted around it. A trellis of wind fell between the pair and the ruin; dust stirred. The giant robot creaked behind them, commiserative.
"So I did," he observed stormily. Cloth bunched, muscle flexed, light flashed: he snatched his dehydrator gun from his pocket and, without flourish or fanfare, fired it low. Bloop! In a flicker of brilliance the ruin disappeared. Left clattering in its wake was a glittery blue cube.
Another creak: this time the leather of the holster as Megamind slid his weapon lovingly back into hiding.
Roxanne strode over to the cube and plucked it from the ground. She rolled it carefully between her fingers, then over her knuckles, and finally pitched it back toward Megamind, who fumbled it before making it disappear down his sleeve. His arm opened for her next, summoning—asking. Dust puffing under the toes of her flats, she went to him. She fit neatly under his elbow and flush against his side; he breathed slowly, methodically into the swell of her, and together they stood for a moment, looking around.
Suddenly he gestured. "Maybe there," he wondered. It wasn't exactly a question. Across the hewn landscape and horizon his fingertips walked, one-two, one-two. Roxanne's gaze followed them.
"What?" she nudged.
"I don't know," he said, but he did know, and he grinned and looked at her from the corner of a star-green eye. "The garage," he professed. It came out in a spurt. A flush crept over the hinge of his sharp cheek, lavender in the afternoon's wane. "The garage," he tried again, "yes, perhaps there. It could. Uh. Ahem." Those long fingers of his came back and fiddled somewhere under his chin. Roxanne felt his arm shudder. "It could go there."
A moment of silence. He leaned into her, then: gingerly, hopefully. He wasn't heavy despite that he ate almost the whole sugarbowl every morning with his cereal, his form so limber, his touch so tenuous. Roxanne, ever the fan of surety, clutched her arm around him and half-hugged him until his breath whooshed out in a pleased sigh.
He asked, "Do you want a garage?"
"Well, my car's pretty small," she responded. "I don't need a garage for it." She sawed her lip. "But," she went on, "I thought you'd want one—a garage, I mean. For, you know. Your…" She waved: at his gun first, next the looming creation behind them. "…stuff."
"You mean as a lair." He blinked.
"No," he denied immediately. "A garage would be too small, too—too obvious for my needs. My lair will perhaps be subterranean. Sprawling, certainly—"
He stopped. His throat worked, bobbing blue like a fisherman's lure, omp-omp. Under Roxanne's rubbing fingertips his spine stiffened and he looked away from her across the wreckage. There was anxiety in his profile, fear in the flicker of his lashes.
"Megamind?" she prodded.
Tikka-tikka-tikka: a few pebbles caught in the giant robot's rivets disembarked and fell in a scatter. Megamind swallowed again, harder this time.
"A garage," he managed. "It's usual, isn't it? Perfunctory in its inclusion? A standard addition to any suburban household—"
Roxanne deadpanned, "Megamind."
"Normal," he bit out, and looked at her in a manner almost wounded. "Normal"—once more, with feeling—"like, you know. Everyone else's home." He threw his thin arm in the air and shook it, indicating a neighborhood as yet unbuilt. This world, their world, was still all orange construction clay crisscrossed by the lines of their shadows. One day it might be suburbia. Now, though, it was new.
"Don't you want it to be normal?" he asked. "Our home?"
Their home. Normal.
Roxanne closed her eyes. Considered, briefly, the idea of those two things together: their home, normal. Megamind cutting the grass behind a white picket fence while their small yap-yappity dog ran back and forth behind its rungs, its pink tongue lolling. Roxanne herself with two tall tumblers of lemonade in the shade of a blue-shuttered house—their glasses clinking, tuh-ting! A mailbox with its red flag up. Minion in his apron in their kitchen window, holding out a tray of cookies—
Roxanne wrinkled her nose and laughed.
"What?" demanded her boyfriend. "What? Is something humorous? What is it?"
Turning in his haphazard clutch, Roxanne seized at Megamind's sharp cheeks. They shivered like blades under her fingers, too sweet to cut: she grasped them, pinched them, dragged him to her. She kissed him hard until his knees quivered, the left and then the right: she nudged hers between them to keep him steady. When she was done with him, she drew back, smacked in satisfaction, and said, "I asked you to break ground for the foundation with a giant city-defending robot. What about that suggests I'm expecting anything of ours to be normal?"
Still a little wet from the kiss, Megamind's lips quirked. "Ah," he allowed. His hand slid down to hers. "Yes, well." His thumb caressed. "You do have a point, Miss Ritchi."