The large green Lorwardian soldier Warmonga dusted her hands off with a smirk and derisively kicked the prone form of the blonde teenaged boy lying at her feet. She reached down to help her battlemate Warhok back to his feet and the latter soldier picked up the boy and threw him into the crowd of freaks and children that had gathered. The insufferable self-styled 'hero', Kim Possible, leaped up and grabbed the body before it could land but then she too fell to her bruised knees from the effort.
While the loss of their warship and ground support units in Middleton was aggravating, there were plenty of remaining walkers around the rest of the world, and once they had established undisputed dominance of the planet, they could call for troop support to replace the lost vessel. More importantly, they had routed the last visible sign of the city's resistance force: the childish Team Possible and the fake Great Blue.
"We will give you one last opportunity to surrender before we sunder you all!" shouted Warmonga proudly to the small crowd of resistance fighters.
The people stared back, sweeping their gaze from Kim Possible – who was shaking the boy who had tried to attack them with some strange biotic-empowered martial art – and then back again to meet her powerful gaze. Almost together, the collected rebellion lowered their shoulders in defeat. Yes! They had won!
"Yeah, I... don't think we're going to do that," rose a high pitched, snarky, and unfortunately familiar voice from within the crowd. Warmonga narrowed her eyes to find the source.
The people parted as Shego walked forward, covered in bruises, but brazenly walking tall. She walked up next to Kim Possible and put her hands on her hips. Then she shrugged. "But, you know, the better part of valor, and all." Then she rose a hand that glowed brightly green with crackling plasma and flung it into the ground kicking up a huge cloud of dust and throwing dirt and rocks everywhere.
"Insolence!" screamed Warmonga as she raised her spear high and ran into the cloud to impale the infuriating resister.
But when she emerged from the other side of the crowd, Shego, Kim Possible, the boy, and the crowd were gone. She growled loudly in fury.
*** [ KP / ME ]
What If We Don't Graduate?
(A Kim Possible / Mass Effect Crossover)
*** [ KP / ME ]
Chapter 1: Refugee Status
"No time to lick your wounds, Princess," said Shego urgently. "We need to mount a new offensive."
Kim Possible looked around the ruins of the high school's gym, now filled with a few huddling refugees from the Lorwardian invasion, and had the indignity to look defeated back at Shego.
"With what?" she said.
"What do you mean, 'with what?'" scoffed Shego. "With the might of just you and me if that's all we can get, but I'm hoping for more!"
"Well, that worked so well last time," Kim said sarcastically, then turned her attention to Ron Stoppable, still unconscious and laying on her lap. She was stroking his brow gently and listening to his labored breathing.
"Don't be so dour, Drakken's little daisy-act was a crippling blow," Shego said making a fist.
Drakken, sitting on the bleachers pruning the bouquet of flowers growing out of his collar, groaned. "I'm all out of my formula, it will take me time to make more." He had been visibly depressed ever since his plan to save the world met the same success as his plans to conquer it.
"And they've already started recovering," said Kim. "Those legged tanks cover the country and who knows how many more fell from their warship!"
"Then we'll destroy those too," said Shego. "We can't give up. What kind of loser cheerleader are you?"
"Didn't you see what they did to Ron?" Kim shouted, pointing at her boyfriend.
"Please. Since when are you so helpless that you're looking to a boy for help," said Shego. She stepped close to her rival and bent down to speak softer. "You and I have always been the grander act of our pairs. Let's get out there and take care of business."
Kim looked at her with disbelief. "Once again, your ego is getting you into fights you can't win."
"Hah! Takes one to know one, hero."
Kim scowled back.
"Uh, girls," came a stern voice. Mrs. Dr. Possible was walking up in a slightly scuffed labcoat. "I hate to team up on you, but she's right, Kimmiecub. We can't lay down now. As long as we have the fight in us, anything is still possible."
"See? Even your mom's on my side," Shego smiled with a toothy grin.
"At the moment, anyway," nodded Mrs. Dr. Possible. "Though perhaps we need an edge over your last attempt."
"Alright," nodded Shego. "What are you thinking?"
Mr. Dr. Possible turned and waved Wade over. "Wade?"
Wade came over and held up the old version of the Kimmunicator. The screen was flickering but it was showing a map of the great lakes. "I think I've located where their spaceship crashed. If what Shego told me is true, you guys just shut down its engines. If we can get to it, maybe we could reactivate it and use it against them."
"Or at least salvage my rocket," said Mr. Dr. Possible, a little testily.
Shego nodded. "Good plan, Mrs. Mom. That was a warship they had, it must have weapons or something on it worth using."
"Only problem is that it's up here in Lake Michigan," continued Wade. "How do we get to it?"
Kim sighed as she looked at Ron again. Then she frowned and gently slipped out from under him. "I know how to get us there."
*** [KP / ME ]
Warmonga watched Warhok kicked down the doors to the military installation and grinned as the uniformed soldiers fired their useless weapons back at them. With as swing of his spear he knocked the first row of combatants aside and with his backhand he knocked a wheeled vehicle into a roll that slammed into a soldiers with heavier weapons.
With a smile, Warmonga tried to take pleasure in her battlemate's obvious superiority over the inferior species, but couldn't fully shake the fury at losing track of Team Possible and the Great Blue. It had been over a day now that they had been systematically disabling the planet's defense but still no word from the cowards that had fled the battle at Middleton. And without the air support their warship provided, they were stuck using reconnaissance from their many remaining walkers. While they numbered in the hundreds, they could only view a fraction of the planet at any given time. More than enough room for a dozen troublemakers to slip through.
Warhok cackled in delight as he destroyed a mobile weapons platform the humans tried to use against him. The missiles were a surprise, but it seemed everything on this planet was designed to fight other humans, and nothing was anywhere near the caliber necessary to fight off a Lorwardian or even a measly Batarian on a good day. It's like the planet had never considered building defenses against planetary invasion. It was a mind bogglingly bad oversight.
Warmonga sighed at the wanton destruction in front of her. If this planet had no weapons of value, it was going to be of less usefulness than she had anticipated. She would have thought the most densely populated planet she'd ever seen would have the largest or the most diverse weaponry to protect itself from threats. But no, Earth seemed to have taken comfort that nobody had paid attention to it before now and assumed it would be that way forever. Their folly.
She watched as Warhok kicked over a steel door and then marched out a set of older soldiers that were undoubtedly the leaders of this military base. Another victory.
*** [ KP / ME ]
Kim Possible watched as her mother replaced the bandages on Ron's forehead and ribs in the back of the covered infantry transport truck. They were low on medical supplies after only a day and a half of travel because they were stopping to pick up every refugee they ran across. Their caravan of trucks was now eight long, which was a huge risk given the tall walking tanks that were clearly canvassing the country, but Kim and her family couldn't bear the thought of leaving anyone behind. At least they were almost at their destination.
Then they had to figure out how to get the 100+ people onto a boat.
A knock on the door separating the driver cabin from the infantry area startled Kim and she turned to slide it open. Private Dobbs, an older skinny man with dark hair who Kim had helped in the past, looked back over his shoulder while driving.
"We're approaching the seaport," he said. "There are a lot of people up ahead but I don't see any tanks."
"Take it slow, we don't want to run over anyone but we can't stop now," said Kim. She leaned slightly through the hole and looked up ahead. Private Dobbs wasn't joking. There were hundreds of people ahead, collected in makeshift camps outside of Chicago in an obviously desperate attempt to get away from the smoking city. The tanks had targeted all the large population centers first, which meant Chicago, along with New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Atlanta, and every other big city had either been turned to rubble or at least significantly damaged. There seemed to be little interest in sweeping the area for survivors, so many people had begun flooding into the suburbs or even further out.
"We should head to the city's port authority," said Shego, sitting in the passenger seat beside Dobbs. She had insisted on being in the lead truck with Kim and had been listening to the short band radio trying to figure out what was going on with the military effort to turn back the Lorwardians. "I think the Navy base is dust."
"Into the city?" asked Dobbs. "That's not a good idea."
"Well we can't just drive these trucks out into the lake," said Shego. "Civilian boats are our best shot. Some bigwig's yacht should be big enough and fast enough to take us into the lake before the greenskins notice. We can't waste time driving around the beach hoping to run across one. The port is the best call."
"What do you think, Kim?" asked Dobbs, looking over his shoulder again.
Kim could see Shego fuming at having her every suggestion questioned, but there didn't seem to be anything wrong with her assessment, save for one thing.
"We need to split up," said Kim. "We can't take all these people with us onto a single boat, we'd be a sitting duck."
"I completely agree!" Shego said enthusiastically. "I don't know why we picked them up in the first place."
"At the same time," Kim said loudly and forcefully. "We need more than just you and me."
Shego crossed her arms and scowled. "I don't see why."
"We should take Wade and my family with us," said Kim. "And a few people with military experience, like Barkin. Everyone else should stay here with these survivors."
"I'll stay with the survivors then," said Dobbs. "Try to organize them in case the tanks or those two aliens show up."
"Your family and the nerdlinger are going to slow us down," said Shego, seriously.
"Maybe, but if anyone is going to figure out how to power up an alien space ship, it's going to be my father, Wade, and my brothers. Maybe Drakken too." Kim hesitated. "Also, we're taking Ron with us."
Shego opened her mouth wide to shout but Kim cut her off. "No negotiation on this! If you want my help, I'm not leaving Ron anywhere."
Shego growled again, which was becoming a fairly regular occurrence. "Fine. But I'm not sticking my neck out to keep him safe."
"I didn't ask you too," snapped Kim and she slide the door shut again.
*** [ KP / ME ]
In the end more than the handful of people Kim named ended up coming with them into Chicago proper, but not many more. Barkin had refused, but Kim's grandma Nana insisted, as well as her uncle Slim and cousin Joss. Also, Bonnie asked to come, for reasons not totally apparent, and was currently half of the team carrying Ron on a stretcher.
The blonde boy still hadn't woken up, which Kim's mom said was a bad sign, but without her medical equipment or any time to stop and run tests, there was little they could do about it. Kim hoped that he would last long enough for them to get him some medical attention, either after the invasion had been thwarted or when they could safely secure a hospital with power.
They were now walking down the long harbor, with Shego and Drakken rummaging around each of the larger looking yachts looking for a seaworthy – and fast – vessel.
"How about this one?" Shego called out from one pier ahead, and Kim ran with her father ahead. They found her standing at the bow of a three level ship named 'NORMANDY' that looked sleek and fast but also mostly covered with only a small deck area exposed to the outside. That was one of their criteria in the hope it would give them more protection if someone did find them.
Mr. Dr. Possible climbed up the gang plank onto the ship and ducked into the bridge while Kim walked alongside the ship to inspect it. It looked immaculate and its owner must have been quite attentive to the care of the long and narrow ship. She felt a little guilty about stealing it, but it WAS the end of the world.
Shego smirked down at Kim's inspection. "It could use a bit more green, but beggars can't be choosers," she said. "It also has some scuba gear in case part of the warship is submerged."
"I'm sure the warship is at least partially underwater," said Kim as she continued her examination of the hull. "Seeing as it's in the middle of Lake Michigan."
"Well, doy, but that doesn't mean we'll need to use the parts that are flooded," said Shego.
Kim ignored her and finished her pacing. "It looks seaworthy and large enough. Can we start it?"
The boat suddenly rumbled to life in response. Her father than poked his head out of a window wearing a ridiculous tricorne hat. "That's a 10-4, Kimmiecub!"
Kim nodded slowly. "Cast off lines," she shrugged.
*** [ KP / ME ]
The ship cut through the choppy lake waters smoothly despite the gathering storm up above. They had managed to not run afoul of any of those walking tanks on the way out the harbor despite Shego spotting one walking through the ruins of Chicago. Kim guessed that they weren't patrolling the waters yet whe she saw it take a sharp turn along the coast and head north, which meant they might get a bit of breathing room. She wasn't going to waste it though.
Wade had hooked the Kimmunicator he was carrying into the Normandy's onboard computers and was now directing heading from the mobile device. Her father was still wearing the large hat and was at the wheel, but was only going where the arrow on the electronic map was pointing.
"We should be able to see it soon," said Wade, looking up. He, Kim, and Mr. Dr. Possible looked out the windows up ahead where they could see a small cloud of smoke rising from the horizon directly ahead. Shego was standing out on the deck in front of them, and pointed at the black plumes.
"It can't still be on fire, can it?" asked Kim, worried at the sight.
"After two days?" said her father. "There might not be much left by this point."
"Maybe the engines are back on or there are failsafe systems," said Wade. "We don't know what kind of cargo they were carrying either, maybe a small amount of flammable chemical or fuel is leaking somewhere."
Kim shook her head. "Only one way to find out."
The Normandy motored up alongside the huge metal space ship that was resting mostly on the surface of the water, much to Kim's surprise. It seemed colossally heavy, she didn't think it was possible to be floating, and yet, here it was, only slightly askew.
The smoke was rising out of one of the four rectangular engine exhaust collars, which was audibly sputtering as they approached, a sign that something was operating inside, if improperly. A large gash was exposed along the hull that had filled in with some sort of bright yellowish foam. It seemed solid but had bubbled out of the tear slightly and its uneven expansion seemed to be the cause of the ship's slight yaw as it flowed on the surface of the lake.
"This is a good sign," said Wade. "It looks more or less intact. We might still be able to fly it."
"The smoke still bothers me," said Kim's dad.
Everyone that had come along gathered on the front of the Normandy as Kim and Shego leapt onto the bobbing hull and tied the two ships together. Using the gangplank they had retracted when they left Chicago, they helped Mr. Dr. Possible, Wade, Drakken, and Uncle Slim across and they all started searching for a way in.
"Careful," said Mr. Dr. Possible as Wade nearly slipped on the wet hull of the spaceship. "We should be using some sort of safety harness."
"Nothing to attach it to, Dr. P," called out Shego from the top of the ship. She had free climbed up after helping everyone on to see if there was a hatch on the top or forward at the cockpit. "There are no hooks or latches anywhere I can see."
"Well that's not very safe," said Slim as he ran his hands over a seam between two hull panels. "They must need to do maintenance occasionally, and without a dry dock how could they keep their workers safe."
"Yeah, safety didn't seem to be a priority of the greenskins," commented Shego.
Drakken was holding on to a ledge so tightly his arms were shaking, but he was talking quietly to a flower that had grown out of his sleeve. Kim watched with curiosity before the vine suddenly nodded (!) and then dove downwards under the water along the edge of the ship.
Kim shrugged and scaled backwards towards the engines, trying to find the garbage chutes Ron had used to get into the ship the first time. The cloud of black smoke was creating a haze covering the entire rear of the vessel but it wasn't so bad she couldn't see. She did worry about what she was inhaling though.
"Got something!" came a call from behind her and she turned to see Mr. Dr. Possible waving his hand around. Kim started tracking back.
Wade made it first over to the call and he and Mr. Dr. Possible studied the slightly raised square with about a dozen smaller squares within it.
"Like a keypad," nodded Wade. He pressed his fingers against it and the panel replied with a tone and a glow. He experimentally touched the individual squares, each which emitted a sound and a different color.
"Why would there be audio cues on an interface designed to be used in space?" said Uncle Slim as he arrived. "You couldn't hear it."
Wade shook his head and began rapping basic patterns into the panel looking for a failure case. Nothing apparently different happened and he scratched his chin. He had pressed different parts of the panel over forty times and there was no error sound, red light, or change of state. "Huh," he said simply.
"Maybe it's not a pattern," said Mr. Dr. P. He pressed different parts of the panel simultaneously and got new colors and tones, but nothing changed.
"Maybe it's just an instrument," snarked Shego. "These might be hair band aliens."
Wade paused and studied the panel again. "Or it's just an interface."
"Clearly it's an interface," said Drakken, who had finally approached but still had a vine trailing out of the cuff of his sleeve and into the waters.
"No, I mean, it's a computer interface, not a human interface," said Wade, as he pulled out his Kimmunicator. With a few swipes on the screen, a probe extended and touched the surface. Immediately it lit up with a dozen colors. "Hmm... okay, that's a good sign."
"How do we decode the message?" said Uncle Slim. "I doubt their computers operate on the same base principals as ours."
"I have a program on here designed to interface with unknown systems," said Wade. Tapping the screen of the Kimmunicator and launching a quickly flashing screen. "It's modeled after known languages and can take a heck of a long time with an entirely foreign system, but maybe there will be a syntax analogous with..." he trailed off as the screen flashed red several times.
"What's wrong?" asked Uncle Slim.
"I... I'm not sure," said Wade. He tried tapping the screen but the red flashing didn't go away. He pushed the buttons beneath and still there was nothing. He frowned. "A virus? But there would have to be commonalities for that to even be possible."
Suddenly the Kimmunicator went black and the probe retracted again. Wade blinked. "Uh, that's new."
"It broke your computer?" asked Mr. Dr. Possible.
Wade pulled off a panel in the back of the device and stared at a dim light glowing between two small square battery cells. "It's still processing something... maybe it's caught in a loop?" He turned it over again and now the screen was displaying an image of a blue orb made up of a hundred small glowing dots with a denser cluster of dots in the center. The dots were gently pulsing, growing in intensity and then dimming like a heartbeat.
"What the..." started Wade.
Then the Kimmunicator emitted a calm but highly modulated voice. "State your designation."
Everyone stared wide-eyed and Kim and Shego took a step backwards into combat positions.
"Desig...nation?" said Wade. "My designation?"
The blue orb pulsed in sync with the voice. "State your designation."
"Umm, Wade," said the confused boy.
"Um Wade identified," the voice replied. "State your purpose."
Wade looked around at the rest of the group huddled around the Kimmuicator expectantly. He wasn't quite sure what he could say.
Mr. Dr. Possible, however, cleared his throat. "We'd like to get into the ship," he said politely. "Can you help?"
The blue orb pulsed quietly for a moment, then spoke once more. "Confirm: this local cluster is in operational authority of the stated 'ship'?"
"I... think so?" said Mr. Dr. Possible.
"Context confirmed," replied the voice quickly. "Exterior access locks disabled."
Suddenly a U-shaped handle rose up out of the surface of the hull next to the colorful panel and a small white light appeared in a circle surrounding it. Uncle Slim reached out and twisted handle within the glowing circle. After about a third of a turn the handle popped out further and a rectangular section of the hull about ten feet tall by three feet wide unlatched and began sliding open, revealing a dark interior with flicking orange lights. A gush of musty air blew out and Slim covered his nose from the stench.
"Alright, progress," nodded Shego.
Wade looked at the Kimmunicator, which no longer showed the blue orb and had gone back to normal operation now. "I guess?" he said.
*** [ KP / ME ]