What better way to celebrate a year of FanFiction writing than by updating one of my Fics :P
Yep, can you believe it? A year today I have been Invader Hope, writing here online! An amazing experience :D Thank you all to the wonderful reviews, comments, likes! Everything :)

To all the friends I have made, I owe you all a lot, and I'm very happy to know you guys ;)

"Come on, come on," he sighed, leaning back into the leather seating, "Why do I always hit all the red lights on my way home?"

He fiddled with the tuner on his radio, trying to get a decent enough station at this late hour, "She's going to be so mad I'm late again. I promised to be in time for dinner, but no. I get dumped with five case files to finish reading through while my partner gets to go out for drinks. I swear I have such rotten luck sometimes."

He slumped over the wheel, blowing some black curls out of his eyes that were getting trapped in between the lens of his glasses, "God, it's been a long day, huh?"

He looked up at the sky, the full moon out tonight. He gave a little smile, "At least I picked a decent enough night to stay out till one."

He squinted, noticing something, "Is that…a shooting star?"

A stunning light flew across the sky.

Dib's smile grew, "Haven't seen one of those in a while."

Unfortunately…that wasn't a star.

Zim lay on the cool blades of broken grass, his eyes blinking open. Blurred flames made his eyes water. The smell of smoke forced him to cough. He placed his one hand beneath where his chin met the ground, his other arm not even reacting to feeling anymore. He pushed up, grunting in desperation. He collapsed back down, panting in exhaustion. He looked around, the blurred vision clearing. Dark. It was night time. Trees. A forest sort of area. Good, just like he aimed it.

In the distance, he could see the city. He nodded. His home was thankfully closer than he originally guessed.

He tried again, managing to get his knees beneath him this time as he pushed himself against the ground. He sat on his legs when he got upright, waiting for the rush of dizziness to pass. He then got one leg up. Then the other. And there he stood, the ship behind him smouldering and destroyed beyond repair. He looked at it, not even remembering the crash. He wasn't used to flying ships anymore, especially ones not created by an Irken or Vortian. That ship was Red-Wing made and designed for said creature. It was a miracle Zim managed to get it to Earth at all. But weak and drained, he guessed he passed out just before landing, making the experience of crashing quite forgettable. At least, that's what he hoped. He let out a breath, watching as a piece of flaming rubble crumbled under the flames as it hit the melted seating he remembered resting against a few hours earlier.

He turned, holding onto his wrist in an attempt to stop the now freshly opened wound from bleeding again as he staggered through the trees, slowing making his way back home. The cool air of Earth washed over him. Not scorching. Not icy. Just…cool. Zim sucked it in in a sigh, letting it fill his heavy breath, feeling that crisp fresh air hit the back of his scratchy throat. He wanted so badly to say he missed this after his terrifying experience, but…

He knew he wasn't in disguise. He was dressed in a pair of black pants and shredded bandages that had been placed over his injured shoulders. He was glad they hadn't started bleeding during the chase. Whatever the doctors used seemed to hold. Unfortunately, and deliberately Zim guessed, the harsh scars were left behind as the thread was absorbed into his body a few days earlier…meaning he would have those marks as a reminder of his life.

He was now wandering around out in the open, exposed and helpless.

He couldn't help but feel a little accomplished, though. He was the only Irken to have survived a trip to and from Planet Molten. He still had a lot of things he needed to get sorted out before this counted as a victory, such as getting rid of the monster within him, which he wondered if was still alive after this traumatizing ordeal.

Yet he survived. He should be happy, dancing over the moon. Relishing in the fact that Zim still had it! He showed his Tallest who was the true victor, right?

But no. He felt like crap. He felt…defeated. Not like a hero…like a failure.

Within an hour or so of wobbly walking, Zim nearly collapsing over several times, he managed his way to his doorstep. He looked up at the purple door, not as excited to see it as he should have been. He rested his head against it as his still functioning hand pressed down against the buzzer, not even bothering over using just one finger to do it. That required too much effort right now.

He heard footsteps within, a grumble from Skoodge managing to be heard as well. Zim gave a small smile. He was at least glad to hear his voice again. He stood straight, watching as the door swung open, "We don't want any…!" Skoodge started, disguise on. His angry looked softened into shock, "Z-Zim?"

"Evening," he tried, attempting a half smile while he was at it.

Skoodge grabbed hold of him, Zim practically falling into his grasp, "What on Earth happened to you?"

"Oh, you know…" Zim grunted, shutting his eyes, "I-I need a sleep, Skoodge."

"You need medical attention," Skoodge scooped him up and helped him over to the couch, "Computer! Protocol 8-Z! NOW!"

Down came several tentacles with various equipment attached to each end. One of the tiles upon the smooth floor disappeared and through it rose a stand lined with towels and gels used for cleaning wounds.

Skoodge grabbed a clear gel and a cloth and started wiping down the sweat and blood from Zim's face and arms as the Computer began removing the tattered bandages. Zim lay there, eyes half open as he watched, "So Master Zim, I take it the trip went well then?"

"I made it back alive, Computer. So yes, I guess it did," Zim mumbled, not much tone left in his voice. Skoodge gave him a look, worried and angry with Zim for saying that. If he had just listened in the first place

The Computer stopped with tentacles hanging in mid-air, holding two strands of bandage up, "Master Zim…"

Skoodge looked down, horrified, "Zim."

Zim shut his eyes, feeling a little insecure now. He really didn't want them to see that, but was too tired to even try stopping them. The two bite-marks across his shoulders were sickening. The deep and dark green bruising around them made the site almost too much for the unprepared Irken, "What did they do to you?"

Zim remained silent, staring at the TV behind Skoodge with dull eyes. What hadn't they done?

Skoodge continued to wipe down the stained flesh after a few moments of stillness, the Computer bringing out some thread to stitch up his half broken wrist. He brought down the needle, coated in an anaesthetic, and began sowing up the wound. Zim shut his eyes as Skoodge went to get another towel and some more gel, "Master Zim, please try and stay awake for us. I need to see how stable you are to confirm whether or not sleeping is safe."

"I'm not sleeping," Zim sighed, "My eyes are sore."

The Computer scoffed, hearing that excuse before, "I still suggest keeping them open."

Zim grumbled and slowly opened his itching lids, struggling to keep them up. But that wasn't a problem for very long. There before his delirious eyes stood Emperor Scarlet, tall and proud. He was grinning playfully at the Irken, "Thought you could get away, huh, Zimmy?"

Zim jolted up, the needle tearing through his arm as he screamed, trying to get up onto the couch. Skoodge looked up and ran over to him, "Zim?! Zim, what's wrong?!"

Zim continued screaming, "Computer, activate defences! Quickly!"

The Computer hesitated, "Master Zim, for what reason?"

Zim blinked. And he was gone. He skidded down his seat, hitting the cushion, shaking in fear as Skoodge grabbed hold of him, "Zim?"

Zim's chest thundered as he stared at where he thought he saw him, "He…he was…" His eyes half closed before shutting altogether. He fell over, Skoodge freaking, "ZIM!"

Skoodge shook him, but Zim gave no response.

That's all for today. Keep yer eyes out for a new surprise coming soon (it's to replace Uprising which, alas, got deleted DX we're trying to re-load it, but it's taking a bit of time. If we can't get it back up by the end of the week, we're scraping it)

But this new 'surprise' will be worth it :P
Keep reviewing (PLEASE) and I'll see you all soon