Note: Mahhh swiss cheese brain strikes again! G-001SIR was not my idea. It was CHIKARAfiction's idea. Ya'll can thank him for "bringing GIR back to life" cause I was just gonna explode him. In other news, this fanfiction has long surpassed the current wordcount on my novel. I think I'mma go curl up in the corner and be pathetic now.
It was late evening by the time Zim made it out to the bus bench, seating himself beside Red. Red's head was tilted back, his eyes closed, but he sat up when he felt Zim slide in next to him.
"Is it common for large vehicles to stop in front of this seat and wave, honk, then move on?" Red asked, annoyed.
Zim blinks. "Did it have big letters on the side that said WHAT ABOUT THE BUS?" When Red nodded, Zim rolled his eyes. "Stupid cranky bus slave drone. Yes. This is a seat where people sit and wait to pay to get on that vehicle."
Red gaped. "Monies are paid to get on that monstrosity?"
Zim nodded. "I know, it's crazy."
Red looked ahead. "So, do you know what you're going to do?"
Zim also looked ahead. "Yes. I am still needed here. So I am going to stay here with them." He paused. "And you?"
The Tallest shifted. "I have to consider my options. I will continue to try contacting the Empire, but until they receive anything, I am stranded here. I have a thought, but I need to... research it, a bit more." He glanced over to Zim. "In short... I'll be nearby. Most likely. Hold still."
Zim blinked. "What are you—" He stiffened as he felt a wire connect with his PAK. He could feel a heavily encrypted anchor code being downloaded into his PAK.
"You should be able to communicate with me through PAKlink now." Red said, disconnecting the wire. "And with that encryption, I don't think we have to worry about being heard."
Zim's eyes were wide. PAKlink with a Tallest. Unheard of. But then, so was a Tallest having offspring.
Red stood. "I have to complete some research on my options. I will be back."
Zim's antennae lifted. "Will you be alright out there? You still have barely any Earth know-how... and where will you stay?"
Red scratched his head. "For now, the campsite. I'll be fine. Training was awhile ago, but I still trained with the best of them."
Zim dug into his pocket and pulled out his monies card. "Take this, you'll need it." He said.
Hesitating a moment, Red accepted it. "The amount used will be repaid once I figure out their currency system." He promised.
No need, Zim thought, but he knew that would be an insult to his Tallest's pride. Instead, he nodded. He wiggled his antennae in subtle salute, and Red inclined his head. Turning, Red walked off toward the campsite.
Zim stood, heading back to his home, hands in his pockets. Dib would be setting up his interview with the government agencies over the next few days, so he could explain what happened—well, most of it, maybe leaving Red out of it, and Gaz—and testify against the Swollen Eyeball agents caught at the scene. He'd be lucky if they didn't stick a tracker on him. He'd spoken with Dib, and come to the conclusion that it would help ease Gloria into being around him again if he came a couple times a week.
Exhaustion dragged at his feet, and he sighed. Food could wait until the next day. Sleep was imperative, perhaps for two or three days.
The surrounding temperature dropped a few degrees, and Zim shivered at the chill. "Gaz? Is that you?"
"Well somebody's observant."
Zim turned, tiredly, and started back. Gaz stood there, an unconscious Irken gripped firmly by the antennae in one hand. "Don't worry. It's one of your bounty hunters. I'll toy with him a bit, let him go long enough to blast the fact that there's a morflar around, before I eat him."
Zim shuddered, feeling an unreasonable amount of pity for the Irken.
Gaz growled a little. "I can't change what I am, Zim. If it's not you or Red, it's gotta be somebody. It's just how it is."
Zim blinked. "So... you are leaving Red alone?"
Gaz' eyes narrowed. "That depends entirely on what he tells me when I go talk to him tonight. But most likely, as long as he doesn't do anything really stupid."
Zim tilted his head. He'd spoken enough with Gaz over the past couple of weeks to be able to pick up undercurrents of other emotions in her voice. Her voice wasn't nearly as menacing and threatening as it usually was. If anything, it was low... almost mellow. Even with her aggressive choice of words, it was obvious she wasn't as vicious as she had been.
Zim looked down. "I'm sorry about your... parental unit." He said quietly.
Gaz flinched, and turned her head away. "It was your fault." She said flatly. "But... it was my fault too..." Her shoulders sagged. "I mishandled it, and you made stupid choices because of that."
Zim rubbed his eyes tiredly. "Yes. So I'm told. My choices are stupid."
Gaz glanced over, and grunted. "Go sleep or something. And stop setting up those stupid sound traps, I don't think any bounty hunters will come within a mile of this planet once they know."
Zim's head wobbled in a nod. He averted his eyes from the captive Irken, and turned, walking up toward his house. It had already been a difficult week, but the next one was going to be just as long.
Red poked a stick at the fire he'd gotten going, keeping his eyes fixed on the flames. He knew it wouldn't be long now. He'd have to present his proposal to... that thing, and hope it didn't eat him on the spot.
Sure enough, the flames flickered lower, and the temperature around him dropped. He kept his eyes on the flames, his antennae lowering.
So. Have you come up with a plan yet?
Red took a deep breath, nodding.
Well, out with it. Let's see if it's any good.
Red opened his mouth, and nothing came out. He cursed this choking fear clogging his voice, he was the Tallest for Irk's sake! He shouldn't be cowed by anything, not even a morflar.
What came out of his mouth was a jumble of words slammed together, an audible mess of an idea, but Gaz must have understood, because two glowing red eyes whipped around in front of his face, wide and disbelieving.
You want to do WHAT?
Note: I've decided to open up shop for questions. Look for me, with my selfsame username, on Tumblr. I also tweet, but since Twitter is all about brevity it restricted my username. In that case, I go to the closest thing, Hecallsmehisown. When I'm not answering questions, I'll be brainstorming projects and reposting things I see that I like (including all aforementioned fanart). See you in the Social Media quagmire! And in the next story, Sempadinum!