Author's Note: This is my kind of alternate take on the events of 6x15 while trying to stay as close to the original plot as possible. It's just that the fact that the thing with bunnies was never really drawn to a conclusion (or it was and I forgot that part completely) has been bugging me for the past... five hours or so, while I was going through a mini re-run of the sixth season in a miserable attempt to fill up my gas tank as I can only be fueled by Jennifer Morrison's epicness.
Contains spoilers due to obvious reasons.
Wieners, Gonads and Bunnies
Kids, as I've told you, in the fall of 2010, I was designing a new building for the Goliath National Bank. It was supposed to be built in place of a beautiful old hotel infested with sn—a beautiful old hotel called the Arcadian. That's where I met Zoey – the most intelligent, confident, craziest (in the best way possible) architecture nerd in a one hundred mile radius, and coincidentally also the one most determined to bring my entire company down.
Now when a girl such as this appears in your close vicinity, the mature thing you do is, of course, be honest and don't let your professional life interfere with your personal feelings. And that was exactly what I did; I told her I was the 'Architect of Destruction', and proposed that we both try to reach mutual understanding in peace over a nice Italian dinner.
Okay, I lied. Here's what I did; I told her I was a veterinarian. What? I'm not good making stuff up off the top of my head! But that's not where the story ends. See, the next day, Zoey drove a stolen van full of albino bunnies, which were supposedly exposed to dangerous experiments, to my place. I don't know how she did it. I never asked. I don't want to know. The point here is, she thought I could nurse the bunnies back to health. So, like a responsible adult, I apologized for that misunderstanding and took the rabbits to a real vet.
Fine, I didn't do that either. You kids don't buy anything of what I say! Sigh. In reality, I told her I would go upstairs to get my veterinarian stuff. You know the rest of that story. However, what I never told you is what happened to the bunnies.
That is what this tale is going to be about. You see, at the time I actually dragged all the bunnies up into the apartment and hid the cages in my room. I told Zoey that I needed time to perform all the necessary vet stuff – you know, procedures – so she left, entrusting me with all those little critters. I was tired, I was confused, and I admit I might have been a little lazy to deal with them right away, so I just went to sleep. The next day, I had to run early to the GNB to tell Barney that I wasn't going to let them go through with this project, and there Zoey was to throw eggs at me, sabotage both my career as an architect and as a professor and just be Zoey. She was only talking to me through the medium of names and I was so angry, having my life turned upside down, that I kind of forgot about the bunnies. Alright, alright, I am a terrible person, can we please move on? The story's not over yet! Because weeks later, when Zoey and I were friends, due to a strange moment of melancholy, she remembered telling me to take care of the animals and asked what I had done to them when she realized that my prompt VMD lie didn't explain them disappearing from my apartment.
Actually, it wasn't a strange, random moment of melancholy. It went something like this:
"I think you hate me. I think you have some big problem with me and you're too chicken to come out and say it," Zoey exclaimed, stepping back and forth at the doorstep of Ted Mosby, the world's biggest asshole of an architect and a poor excuse for a man at the moment.
"Alright. Yes, I hate you."
Zoey put her hands on her hips, desperately trying not to break into tears. Of course, being the stubborn sailor's ex-wife she was, she wouldn't even look away at that point, making Ted feel even worse than he already did. "Great. See? Was that so hard?" she said, her voice breaking, before storming off.
"Zoey!" he called out after her.
The blonde spun around to face him. "Can you at least tell me why? 'Cause I'm wrecking my brain here and I thought…" She sighed. She had been under so much pressure lately and Ted wasn't exactly helping, and neither were any of his friends. Now that she got all the way through the labyrinth back into this hallway, she was too exhausted to explain everything. "I just wanna know why."
"Why do I hate you? Are you kidding? You're actively trying to prevent me from realizing a life-long dream, so there's that, plus you're stubborn, and and and argumentative, and what kind of name is Zoey? What is that, short for Zoseph?" Ted blurted out all at once. "You talk during movies. You sneeze with your whole body. To my knowledge, you do not speak Portuguese…"
"Well, actually, eu falo um pouco de Português."
Now kids, to this day I don't know what that sentence meant and whether it was in fact in Portuguese, but it was at the very least impressive. Yes, because a girl said it. I'm a man, for Pete's sake.
This went on for a while longer as I continued to list the things I supposedly hated about her in a vain attempt to scare her away, and she did the same. Eventually, we got to this point:
"You didn't treat the bunnies!"
Silence fell upon them. Not the comforting type, not even the solemn 'something bad just happened' type, but the scary, horror-like, realization dawning kind of silence. "Oh my god, Ted. What did you do to the bunnies?"
She was right. What did he do to the bunnies? The last fluffy white thing he could remember was the creature Barney was cradling in his arms while impersonating Don Giovanni in his apartment. Barney had named her 'Cottontail' and the two had bonded. Thus the only one who could have any newer information about the rabbits was him.
"We should check with Barney," Ted suggested.
And so the two spontaneously decided to forget all about the absurd, nonsensical fight they were having, and look for the missing animals.
They drove in awkward silence to the then-GNB headquarters and ran up the countless flights of stairs to Barney's office because they were both so busy trying not to think of one another but focus on the trouble at hand that they forgot the building had elevators – many, expensive, silver-clad elevators.
"Threesome? Absolutely! What took you so long to come up with this?" Barney greeted them with a cheeky grin as he sat across his desk and watched his two flustered friends catch their breath. "It's gonna be legen—wait for it—"
"We're here to ask you about the bunnies, Barney," Ted clarified the situation.
"Ted, you interrupted my dary. You do not interrupt a man when he's about to finish the dary!" Barney yelled, standing up from his chair.
"The bunnies that were at my house and you found them a few weeks ago. What happened to them?"
The blonde man made a soundless 'oh' face and started to fidget nervously with the no doubt important papers on his desk, which probably required him to sign in one of the corners to make the contracts valid. "I gave them to charity?"
Zoey rushed over to his side of the room and grabbed him by the tie, wrinkling Barney's perfect, twelve thousand dollar suit, eliciting a woeful howl from the man. "Barney, I am going to kill you with this shredder if you don't tell us the truth!"
"Alright alright alright! You remember Cottontail? She convinced me to keep them all," he stuttered, scared that any more damage might be done to the suit that was his best friend on Fridays.
"All of them? Where?" Ted asked while Zoey let go of Barney, who then straightened his attire.
"I kind of have a few farms up in Montana…"
Ted's jaw dropped a little at yet another thing he didn't know about one of his—er, his best friend. "A few farms? Okay, seriously, what do you do for a living?"
"Psh, please," Barney shushed him with a smile.
"Oh. Well, then I suppose it's all good. You could as well finish the dary now," Ted suggested, feeling slightly guilty. He knew how much Barney liked the aforementioned word, so much that it should by no means be used by anyone else in his presence.
"Nah, it doesn't have the ring to it when you know it's coming."
Zoey and Ted shared a look of genuine confusion along with a short mental dialogue that ended with them coming to the conclusion that it would be best if they didn't say a thing.
"Now if you'd please excuse yourselves from this room, I'm waging a war with the lawyer dude in the building across the street and it's my turn."
It was definitely for the best not to say a thing.
As Zoey and Ted walked through the door, they heard a loud 'Dary!' coming from the office. "Legendary!"
When they got back to Ted's apartment, neither of them had any idea what they had been fighting about, and as stupid as it was, were trying to remember for a good few moments before they realized that fighting for the sake of fighting wasn't one of their wisest motives. Zoey didn't even know why she went up those stairs again until she found herself standing at his doorstep, just like approximately an hour earlier, staring into his eyes but without fear this time. "The bunnies are okay," she whispered and smiled as her eyes became glazed over for an entirely different reason.
"Yeah," nodded Ted. Just then, his phone rang. He gave Zoey an apologetic smile and picked it up. "Hi. Yes, she is. She is? Wow. Um, thanks."
The blonde frowned at him. "Who was th—" She was stunned into silence by his lips on hers and his hands pulling her close. Thank god for Marshall.
Kids, there is no way in hell I'm ever telling you what happened afterwards. But even though me and Zoey both had our flaws, this silly adventure is one of my best memories of her.
Yeah, dad, we both know you and Zoey were taking things extra super slow. As in, glacial, falling asleep in the middle kind of slow.
What? Who told you that? Wait, was that me? Damn it, I should have thought this through.