Author's note: This is an old (circa 2008) oneshot that I just ran across and figured I'd post here. Cinder is my Darkwing Duck OFC who I introduced in a truly ancient fic called 'Time for a Change'. She becomes a member of the Fearsome Five, which subsequently becomes the Sinister Six, and various misadventures ensue.
A Little Disruption
Sometimes (and Megavolt would never say this out loud, even he wasn't that dense), he really did have trouble remembering who she was. So he'd devised a series of steps to help him keep things straight. Cinder, which she preferred to be called (by him) even though she pretended to hate it, was his friend first, then his business associate. Co-conspirator. Partner in crime. Whatever cutesy name best suited it. She was short. That was why she wore the boots. High-heeled, tall black boots, and he never understood how she could even stand up in them. Him, he preferred sensible footwear. Practical rubber boots, that was the way to go, all right. He had four pairs for that very reason. The sole was wearing out on his favorite pair, actually; maybe it was time to buy some new ones. Normally he'd just steal what he needed, but it was hard to find the right footwear these days and he didn't want the maker going out of business.
Er. What had he been thinking about?
Oh. Cinder, right. She liked black. Black boots, black skirt, black top, black gloves. Black tights, usually. Even her hair was black. Orange streaks there, though. Bright and loud. Four hoops in each ear, which made him queasy because he hated needles.
And her eyes were blue. He didn't forget those.
At least he couldn't remember forgetting, but maybe that was because he was staring into them right now. Usually when she fixed him with a look so direct it meant trouble, but this one was fairly pleasant at the moment, so he asked, "Uh…what?"
"I thought we could go to the wharf," she responded cheerfully.
Megavolt blinked. Was she kidding? Hard to know without asking. So he did, and Cinder shrugged. "It's spring, it's a nice day. What's to kid about?"
"Um, hm. Let's think for a second, shall we?" She rolled her eyes, but he thought his sarcasm was pretty effective. Just the right combination of scathing and biting. "In case you forgot—"
"You forget, Sparky, not me."
"You're not supposed to call me Sparky, and don't change the subject."
Silence. Except for a clock ticking somewhere. Did he even have a clock? Funny, he didn't remember getting one—
Cinder raised an eyebrow. "You forgot what the subject was, didn't you?"
"I suggested we take a walk at the wharf."
"Oh. The answer is still no. I assume I said no the first time?"
She threw up her hands and stalked over to the window, leaving Megavolt feeling slightly guilty. When she draped herself over the sill and sighed melodramatically, he had an inkling she was attempting to use her feminine wiles to get what she wanted. Luckily for him, he was immune. Totally, completely immune. So immune that he almost couldn't tell they were feminine wiles.
Cinder turned herself halfway towards him, her chin propped up on one hand and an eyebrow arched delicately, and he spluttered, "Okay, okay, fine, but if we get arrested I'm not breaking you out."
With a grin, she said, "I knew you'd see reason."
"This isn't reason, this is insanity," Megavolt muttered, kicking himself for falling for that pouty thing she did.
Before he knew it, the two of them were strolling along the boardwalk at the wharf. Well, Cinder was strolling. He was more skulking. Even the sight of terrified St. Canardians fleeing from the pair of them didn't cheer him up that much. "Why are we doing this, again?" he grumbled.
"Because you adore me."
"Ugh, please. I ate within the last four hours."
"Oh, yeah right," she snorted. "Maybe if you toned it down I'd believe you a little."
"Hey, it's your problem if you don't believe me."
"If one of us is revolting, don't you think it's not the young, attractive, and stylish one?"
"Uh…don't see anyone who meets that description."
She laughed and Megavolt decided to quit while he was ahead. The minute he opened his mouth to discuss something else, though, she grabbed his arm in something between a painful clutch and a death grip, then yanked him 180 degrees around to, apparently, study the selection of shellfish available.
"I didn't know you liked shrimp," he attempted.
The sharp hiss she directed at him was probably an indication she wanted him to shut up, so he shrugged at the vendor, who was trembling and glancing around furtively.
"Any time you want to tell me what you're doing," he said, hoping she managed to pick up on the ever-so-gentle annoyance in his tone.
"Splatter Phoenix," she muttered. "Nine o'clock—no, that's three o'clock, I said nine—"
"Why are we trying to avoid her? I mean, besides the fact that she's snobby and stuck on herself—for no reason, as far as I can see—"
"Because the other night I went on pretty much the most excruciating double date ever with her and the Liquidator."
"It was one of her art school friends—God, here I thought he'd be intelligent and interesting and sensitive because he was an artist, you know?"
"Well, it was basically a disaster. Frankly I'm a little insulted that Splatter actually thought that this guy could hold a halfway intelligent conversation. Or maybe she just thinks I'm stupid? Maybe she thinks looks are all I care about…he was pretty cute…"
An interesting strangled noise escaped from his throat and she finally deigned to pay attention to him. "Problem, Megs?"
"You—why did—how—no one told me," he finally whined.
Cinder slowly edged out of Splatter's field of vision as the villainess strode past. "Why would anyone tell you?" she muttered.
"Why wouldn't they?" he shot back.
"Maybe they didn't even realize you'd want to know," she replied.
"Yeah, well, I like to be kept apprised of these kinds of happenings, thank-you-very-much, so why don't you let them know—"
"Wait." Cinder held up a hand. The vendor, who hadn't moved a whole lot, ducked, and she spared a baffled look in his direction before asking, "Who exactly are 'they?'"
"Er." Megavolt thought about that for a moment. "It's…um…they're…"
She bit her lip and glanced out at the bay, looking really and truly awkward. "Is 'they'…me? Is this like a metaphor?"
Megavolt suddenly found that his gloves were incredibly fascinating. "I'm not sure if that's metaphor, actually."
"Well…whatever." She looked really flustered. Possibly as flustered as he felt. And he didn't even know why; that was bad. He was used to the memory loss, that was one thing, but not even understanding why he felt a certain way? Bad news.
Clearing her throat, Cinder remarked a bit more briskly, "Anyway, it's none of your business if I see someone."
"Yeah, but…it's…that's…yeah," he finished a little lamely. Not that lamely, but…it could've been better. "I guess you might have a point."
She still looked awkward. Not that Megavolt could blame her, as he as still feeling exactly the same way himself. He gave a tuneless whistle and picked up a crab. Ugh, were these things really edible? He knocked on the shell. How were you supposed to tell a good one from a bad one?
"Um." Megavolt looked around at this audible syllable, searching for the source, and finally landed on the vendor. "Those are locally caught. Everything you see is right from the area; local fisherman. We don't sell anything from farms."
"Huh." This seemed to be the only good response.
"Let's get a few," Cinder said suddenly. A bit impulsively, really, considering that he currently felt like he was holding a giant, armored spider. "I'll make crab-cakes or something."
"You can cook?"
It came out pretty incredulous, but she didn't react to that, instead handing the nervous—but at least now slightly wealthier—vendor several bills. As they started back the way they'd come, a plastic bag swinging between them, Megavolt couldn't help from asking, "So…are you?"
"Am I what?"
"Seeing somebody." He was hoping for casual. He couldn't quite make out the expression on her face to gauge if he'd hit the mark.
"Oh." Cinder looked down at the slats of the boardwalk for a moment, then sideways at him. "No."
"Okay." He wasn't going to say 'good.' "Not that I care if you do."
"It's just, I like to know about significant others because…they're a disruption. So I like to be prepared."
She held her hands up. "No disruptions here." After another moment, she asked nonchalantly, "I don't suppose you'd go along with me if they invite me to another one of their double dates? Just as a way to spare me from any of their friends?"
"I don't think the Liquidator has any friends," Megavolt said musingly.
"The question stands."
"You can take care of yourself, can't you?" He made a face. "I wouldn't want people getting…ideas."
Cinder opened her mouth to say something, then shook her head a little and remained silent. At any other time, he'd probably harangue her about what she'd been going to say, but right now…well, he had a feeling it might have to do with disruptions and ideas and…and he was both looking forward to and dreading the moment when this afternoon would become a blurry haze in his memory.
The sun, now setting, lit her face in a soft light that made his stomach twist very sharply and very suddenly, and made him think that sometimes (and he'd never say this out loud) he really did have trouble remembering why he wasn't just a tiny bit interested in some disruption.