Futurama

Fan Fiction

Futurama/Band of Brothers Crossover, part 4
By Ramon_51

Near Angoville-au-Plain, Normandy, France, June 7, 1944 2300 Hours

The patrol stepped off into the darkness, headed for a small woods about 300 meters away. Leela was very sure that the Planet Express Ship was there, waiting to take them home.

Malarkey was the lead scout. Robbins backed him up as the second scout. As patrol leader, Guarnere was next. Leela was close behind. They were followed by Liebgott, Petty, Christianson, and Toye. Guarnere and Toye had Thompson Submachine Guns. The rest except Leela were carrying M-1 rifles. There was enough moonlight to see some distance, so they moved cautiously and stayed in the shadows as much as possible.

Leela felt as though if there were any Germans in the area they must be able to hear the patrol breathing. She put her right hand on her pistol, ready to draw it at any moment. Petty had shown her how to use it during the rehearsal. She knew it was very short range, but having it gave her some comfort.

Malarkey gave the hand and arm signal for “Halt,” so the patrol haled in place. Everyone crouched down as Guarnere went forward to see what was happening.

When he got there Malarkey communicated through hand signals that there were to enemy about 10 feet away. Guarnere peered through the darkness and saw the two silhouettes standing at the edge of the hedgerow that led to the woods. They were Fallschirmjaegers, both armed with machine pistols. He thought things through. There was no way to bypass them. They were in a position that dominated the fields on both sides.

He motioned Robbins forward. When they were together, Guarnere whispered, “We have to take them out silently. Malarkey, you take the one on the left, Robbins, you take the one on the right. I’ll cover you.”

Both men nodded. They lay their rifles down and silently slid their bayonets out of their scabbards. Slowly, the trio moved silently forward. Once they were within touching distance, Malarkey and Robbins sprang forward.

The enemy never had a chance. Both died without firing a shot or making a sound. Malarkey and Robbins lowered the lifeless bodies to the ground. Within a few moments, they had retrieved their rifles and the patrol moved forward.

As Leela passed the spot where the action had taken place, she could smell the blood. Her stomach contracted as she thought of how many men had died in the past few days. She would be very glad to get home.

They entered the edge of the wood. The going was slow, but the area seemed familiar. She tapped Guarnere on the shoulder while whispering, “We should be close.”

They moved slowly forward. Bit by bit, the woods thinned until Malarkey halted the patrol. Guarnere turned to Leela and whispered, “Follow me.” They crept forward to where Malarkey was crouched in the darkness. When they were side by side, Malarkey pointed ahead, “There’s a clearing up ahead.” Guarnere nodded and whispered, “Come on Dorothy, let’s go.”

They moved to the edge of the clearing.

Leela felt her heart pounding in her chest. This was the right clearing, she was sure of it…but the Planet Express Ship was gone!

Clearing 300 meters south of Angoville-au-Plain, Normandy, France, June 7, 1944 2330 Hours

Guarnere nudged Leela and asked in a whisper, “So where is your ship?”

She was so stunned she couldn’t think of a reply. Then she remembered something…her Wristamajigy!

She plunged into her musette bag and pulled the device out. Deftly, she snapped it onto her wrist. She used the touch screen to activate the communications panel. She whispered into the device, “Amy this is Leela, come in please.”

She listened to the hiss of static for a moment before speaking again, “Amy this is Leela, come in please.”

As she was ready to speak again, she heard Amy’s voice, “Leela this is Amy…where are you and where have you been?”

Leela felt a sense of relief flood over her, “Amy, I’m at the clearing. Where are you?”

“Just a second, I need to shut down the holographic generator.”

There was another brief rush of static when, suddenly, the Planet Express Ship appeared in the moonlit clearing as if by magic.

Leela felt tears spring to her eye.

Guarnere looked as if his eyes would pop from their sockets and exclaimed, “Holy Mary Mother of God!”

Malarkey just stared, slack jawed without speaking.

Amy’s voice came over the Wristamajigy’s speaker, “Welcome back, Leela. I’ll activate the forward landing gear ladder.”

Leela spoke, “Amy, I have some people with me. They are friends. I’ll explain when I get on board.” She turned to Guarnere, “Bill, will you come with me?”

Guarnere still seemed a bit dazed, “Just a second Dorothy, Malarkey go back and bring up the rest or the patrol. Have Toye set up to secure this clearing. Keep your eyes peeled for any Krauts.” He turned to Leela, “Okay, let’s go.”

They walked forward together and climbed the ladder into the ship. Guarnere felt a sense of wonder as he emerged in the ship. As they made their way to the bridge, he marveled at nearly everything he saw.

They reached the bridge. Leela glanced quickly around and saw that Cubert was nowhere to be seen. Amy was there, with an ear to ear grin.

Amy rushed forward to hug Leela, “I am so glad you are back! We’re ready to go as soon as we find out when and where we are. Cubert and I have made good use of the time you’ve been gone. I’m sure we can make it back.”

Amy stepped back and looked at Leela’s clothes, “What’s with the uniform?” Then she looked at Guarnere, “And who is he?”

Leela gave a small smile and replied, “These uniforms have helped keep us alive. This gentleman is Sergeant Bill Guarnere of Easy Company, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment…did I get that right Bill?”

Guarnere merely nodded, still taking in the surroundings.

Amy broke the silence, “Where’s Fry and Bender?”

“Bender and Fry are with the rest of Easy Company. Fry got wounded and Bender…well…we couldn’t trust him to keep his mouth shut.”

“Fry’s wounded! How did that happen…is he going to be okay?”

Leela put her hand on Amy’s shoulder, “Don’t worry, he’ll be fine.” She turned to Guarnere, “So, how do we get Fry and Bender back here?”

Guarnere seemed to focus with some effort, “You, Malarkey, and I need to hightail it back to the Company. Lieutenant Winters will probably want to move at least a platoon here to make sure that everything goes okay.”

Leela nodded, “What about the rest of the patrol?”

“They’ll stay here to secure the clearing against any Krauts that might show up. As a matter of fact, we need to move out right now if we want to get there and back before dawn.”

Leela smiled, “I’m ready when you are.”

Angoville-au-Plain, Normandy, France, June 8, 1944 0030 Hours

Malarkey, Guarnere and Leela had made it back to the village without incident. They had stopped at the white stone cottage where Fry was sleeping on the stretcher. Doc Roe was propped against the wall, tired but still alert.

Before Leela could speak, Doc Roe spoke in his soft Cajun accent, “He’s doing okay. I’ve kept him off his feet. He couldn’t stop talking about you until he drifted off to sleep. I just have one question, how come they call you Dorothy?”

Leela shrugged her shoulders, “Don Malarkey gave each of us a nickname when we got here. I guess it sort of stuck.”

Guarnere, who had entered a moment later, smiled at Doc Roe, “Come on Doc…Dorothy and Tin Man…don’t you get it? It’s from the freakin’ Wizard of Oz! Jeez!”

Doc Roe simply shook his head, “Did you find the ship?”

“Did we? I’m on the way to see Winters right now. Can Red walk about three hundred meters?”

“I wouldn’t advise it. We should carry him on a stretcher.”

Guarnere shook his head, “I don’t like the idea, but I guess it can’t be helped. I’ll be back in a few minutes. I have to report to the Lieutenant.” With that, Guarnere headed out the cottage door.

When he left, Leela continued her conversation with Doc Roe, “Doc, how long will it take for Fry’s wounds to heal?”

Doc Roe thought for a few moments before answering, “It’s hard to say. If he stays off his feet and there’s no infection…I’d say a week for everything except the one under his left scapula. You ought to have a real doctor look at that when you get back.”

Leela looked concerned, “Is that one serious?”

Doc Roe shook his head, “Not life threatening, but we had to cut a bit to get it out. That’s why I think a for real doctor should check it over.”

Leela went and sat on the floor next to Fry. Doc Roe excused himself saying, “I’ve got to go see a man about a horse. I’ll be back in a few minutes.”

Leela shot him a puzzled look, “See a man about a horse?” She figured it had to be slang for heaven knows what. Roe gave her one of his infrequent smiles and stepped outside.

Alone with Fry and her feelings, she began to stroke his neck softly. He smiled and stirred in his sleep. She realized that if everything went well, they would soon be home. She knew that she loved Fry, but it had taken him risking death for her to make her admit it.

She bent over and kissed him softly on the cheek. He twitched and mumbled something she couldn’t understand. She didn’t need to.

There was a sound outside the door. It swung open and Lieutenant Winters entered the room followed by Sergeant Guarnere and Lieutenant Compton. Winters looked at Leela, “We are going to move out in fifteen minutes. The Second Platoon under Lieutenant Compton and the balance of Weapons are going to accompany you to your ship. Doc Roe tells me that Red shouldn’t walk. That’s okay; we’ll carry him on a stretcher.”

Leela looked at the tall, blonde Lieutenant. She smiled her best smile for him, “Lieutenant Winters, thank you. It’s going to be hard to…” her voice trailed off as she felt herself choke with emotion.

Winters spoke softly, “You’ve been through a lot. Just hang tough.”

She nodded, fighting back the tears.

Winters excused himself, “I’ve got to report our impending departure to Colonel Sink. Buck, stay here until the two platoons are assembled. I’ll be back to accompany you to the ship.”

As soon as Winters left, Buck tried to crack a joke, “As long as we don’t run into any flying monkeys, you should get back to Kansas before daylight.”

Leela asked, “Is that a Wizard of Oz joke?”

Buck, chagrined that his joke had fizzled said sheepishly, “Yes it was and not a very good one.”

“I’ve never seen it.”

So, for the next ten minutes, Buck Compton told Leela the story of the Wizard of Oz. Several times during the telling, she laughed at his descriptions. When he finished she said, “That is quite a story. I’ll have to watch it some time.”

Buck smiled.

Just then, Sergeant Guarnere poked his head through the door, “Hey Buck, both platoons are assembled. I’ve got Tin Man outside as well as four stretcher bearers. Lieutenant Winters is coming down the road right now.”

Compton replied, “Okay Bill, let’s get this show on the road. Dorothy, why don’t you wake Red up and let him know what’s going on?” He rose and headed out the door to supervise the final preparations for movement.

Leela shook Fry gently awake. When his eyes opened, he smiled. His smile got even bigger when he heard her say, “Wake up Fry, we’re going home.”

Angoville-au-Plain, Normandy, France, June 8, 1944 0100 Hours

Leela was walking in the middle of the column alongside Fry on his stretcher. Four men from Second Platoon carried it uncomplainingly. Bender was slightly behind, walking next to Alton More. Lieutenant Winters was with the lead squad, alongside Buck Compton.

The column was almost sixty men strong, with Second Platoon in the lead followed by Weapons Platoon. The men moved like silent shadows along the same hedgerow the patrol had traversed earlier.

The moon had gone down, so movement was slow. It took a full hour to cover the 300 meters to the clearing. Still, they did it without incident.

As the column crouched by the hedgerow, Lieutenant Winters came back to where Leela and Fry waited. He looked at Leela, “Ready to go home?”

She whispered, “It’s not like this hasn’t been fun, but heck yes. Somebody has to get Bender, though.”

Winters gave a subdued chuckle, “I’ll get him. Get ready to move to the front of the column.” Then he vanished into the darkness, headed in Bender’s direction.

The stretcher bearers hoisted Fry onto their shoulders. Leela stood up and looked around, goodness it was dark! In just a few moments, Winters returned. He was followed by Bender and Alton More.

Winters patted Leela on the shoulder, “Let’s go” was all he said.

They moved to the clearing where they could just barely distinguish the bulky shape of the Planet Express Ship looming up in the darkness. Leela felt a wave of emotion run through her; they were so close to going home! She keyed up the communications panel on her Wristamajigy, “Amy this is Leela, come in please.”

This time the response was immediate, “Leela this is Amy, we are ready to receive you.”

“Amy this is Leela, we have Fry on a stretcher. Please lower the cargo bay hatch. We’ll take him straight to my quarters. With his injuries, he can’t sleep in a hammock.”

There was a momentary pause, “Amy are you there?”

Amy responded, “Just a second, I’m headed for the cargo bay.”

Leela waited patiently for a few moments. Then she heard the unmistakable hum of machinery as the cargo hatch lowered to the ground.

She turned to Lieutenant Winters and her voice quivered with emotion, “Lieutenant Winters, thank you for all you have done for Fry, Bender, and me. Without you, we’d never have made it.”

“I don’t know about that,” he replied, “but I am glad to have helped."

In a rare impulse that startled her almost as much as it did him, she threw her arms around Lieutenant Winters and gave him a fierce hug. Then she stepped back and said, “Thank you” as tears coursed down her cheeks.

Guarnere walked up at that moment, only to be given a bear hug by Leela. She whispered, “Thank you, Bill” several times.

He smiled and said, “You’re welcome, but you are making it hard to breathe!”

She released him, “Thanks for watching over me, Bill.”

“Don’t mention it. Jeez, did you ever consider wrestling as a profession?”

All three of them laughed softly.

At the same time Liebgott was standing by Fry’s stretcher, “Well buddy, looks like you’re going home. See you later.”

Fry was so choked with emotion that he could only nod. He didn’t want to cry in front of his friend. Liebgott patted him on the right shoulder and moved silently off into the darkness.

Bender hugged Alton More, “I’ll miss you pal” and began to sob. More stiffened. He had already had to recover his wallet twice from Bender. But this time, Bender was genuinely grieved. Deep in his circuits, he would miss More.

More patted Bender on the back, “Come on, buddy. Who knows, maybe we’ll see each other again.”

Bender turned tearfully away, “I hope so” was all he could manage to say as he headed toward the ship.

The stretcher bearers placed Fry on the cargo bay hatch. Leela and Bender climbed onto it as well. The soft hum of machinery and hydraulics filled the night as it slowly retracted into the ship.

As soon as they were lost from view. Lieutenant Winters turned to Buck Compton and Sergeant Guarnere, “We’ll stay here until they lift off. Then we’ll head back to the village.”

Inside the ship, Amy could tell that Leela was distraught. So was Fry, who lay sniffling on his stretcher. What really surprised her was that Bender was weeping like a child that has lost its favorite toy.

Leela mastered her emotion, “Come on Amy. Grab one end of Fry’s stretcher and get it to my quarters. He needs to sleep in a bed until his wounds heal.”

“Where will you sleep?”

Leela didn’t answer, “Let’s quit wasting time. We need to get out of here before daybreak.”

Amy raised an eyebrow but decided against saying anything more. She could sense something was going on, but she wasn’t sure what. So, she knelt down and took her end of the stretcher. Within a few moments they had set Fry on the deck in Leela’s quarters.

Leela turned to Amy, “I’ll meet you on the bridge.”

Amy nodded and left without a word.

Once Amy was gone, Leela knelt alongside Fry. She gently stoked his neck as she said, “Rest here until we take off. As soon as I can, I’ll help you clean up and put you to bed.”

There was a certain something in her voice that made Fry’s heart seem to leap in his chest. At first, he thought he wouldn’t be able to speak. Finally, he managed to say, “Okay captain, whatever you say.”

She kissed him lightly on the cheek, rose, and headed for the bridge.

Aboard the Planet Express Ship, Clearing 300 meters south of Angoville-au-Plain, Normandy, France, June 8, 1944 0300 Hours

Cubert finished making some entries at the astronavigation panel. Then he turned around to face Leela and Amy, “I’ve put all of the information into the computer for us to get home. However, we will need to travel out for a day and return for this to work. Last time, we had an uncontrolled reaction and it just hurled us back into the past. This time, I’m sure we can control things.”

Leela looked doubtful, “Am I going to have to be at the helm the entire time?”

Cubert shook his head, “No. Except for takeoff and landing we should rely on the autopilot.”

Leela snorted, “That drunk?”

Amy spoke up, “Cubert and I reprogrammed him with a twelve step program. He shouldn’t be a problem.”

Leela looked skeptical, “Why do we need two days again?”

Cubert answered, “To control the time warp effect with our available means is difficult. That’s why we will have to proceed slowly. The real problem is computing power.”

Amy chimed in, “Don’t worry Leela, Cubert and I have run the simulation at least ten times. It will work.”

Leela thought it odd that Amy seemed to be standing up for Cubert. What was going on? She decided to ask Amy about it later…in private. She shook her head, “Okay, let’s get this show on the road. What’s the procedure?”

Amy replied, “We’ll need to do a normal lift-off and get into geosynchronous orbit. Once we are in orbit, the computer and the autopilot can do the rest.”

“Okay, Amy. Let’s go home.”

Stripping off her M-1942 Pattern Paratrooper Jacket, Leela sat in the pilot’s seat. Clad in a perspiration stained olive drab tee-shirt, dirty Paratrooper Pants and her normal boots, she looked a bit wild.

As she looked over the readouts, she caught her own scent and thought to herself, “I need a shower.”

“Amy…Cubert…are all systems ready?”

They both answered in unison, “Ready!”

Leela’s hands flickered rapidly over the controls, “Prepare for lift-off!”

The ship’s engines roared into life and she began to rise slowly. On the ground, the men of Easy Company looked on in awe. Lieutenant Winters spoke aloud, “God speed.”

To his surprise he heard, Bill Guarnere whisper, “Amen.”

The ship rose rapidly into the air. Within a few moments it was lost from sight, its engine exhaust merging with the stars of the heavens.

Lieutenant Winters turned to Buck Compton and Bill Guarnere who stood close by, “Well, gentlemen, let’s move back to the village. Our job here is done.”

Both men simply said, “Yes sir,” and moved off into the darkness, each wrapped in his own thoughts.

Aboard the Planet Express Ship, Leela felt a sudden wave of sadness break over her. She knew that she would probably never see her friends from Easy Company again. Before the sadness could lead to tears, she forced her mind back to the task of piloting the ship.

The ship gained altitude rapidly. She could have reached orbit in a few seconds, but she wanted to test control surfaces and systems on the way up.

Everything was running beautifully, she noted. After five minutes, they were at orbital altitude, so she deftly maneuvered the ship into position. “Okay Amy, engage the autopilot.”

“Right, Leela.” Amy pressed a few buttons and Leela could feel the ship leaving orbit. Cubert was working diligently at the engineering station. He looked at Leela, “Five Seconds to Time Warp…four…three…two…one…engaging warp.”

The ship was enveloped in a bluish glow. Otherwise, things seemed to be normal.

Leela looked at Cubert, “Is this what you expected?”

He looked up from the instruments, “Everything is running perfectly.”

“Great, I’m going to my quarters for a shower. Amy, you have the bridge.” Leela rose slowly from the captain’s chair. She left the bridge, pausing only to pick up her jacket. Walking down the corridor to her quarters, she felt her thoughts drifting back to that terrible moment when she had seen Fry lying unconscious and bloody on the ground.

She had not realized he was that brave, although she should have. After all, he had taken a stinger for her. Leela looked up in surprise, realizing that she had arrived at the door to her quarters. She smiled as she decided that she would reward Mr. Philip J. Fry for his bravery…in her own special way.

Aboard the Planet Express Ship, Traveling Through Time

Leela entered her quarters as quietly as possible. Fry lay sleeping on the stretcher. A lock of hair had fallen across his face. She smiled as she paused in the doorway to…well…just look at him. She suddenly felt mischievous.

Kneeling next to Fry on the deck, she blew gently on his neck. He stirred in his sleep, smiled, and muttered, “I love you Leela.”

She knelt – bolt upright – on the deck. Her heart pounded in her chest. She watched him closely for a few moments hoping that he was awake, but he was asleep. Leela knew he loved her but he was afraid to say it. Well…she was determined to coax it out of him.

She shook him gently, “Fry, you need to wake up.”

“Hmmm?” he muttered, “Oh Leela, how did take-off go?”

“Great. Now, you need a shower. I’ll help you out of your clothes.” Leela smiled enigmatically.

“My…my…my clothes?”

Leela continued to smile, “Yes. Your…your…your clothes. Come on Fry, I’ve dressed your wounds a couple of time already. Doc Roe made me promise to clean you up.”

Fry tried to be nonchalant, but her smile was driving him nuts. What was she smiling about? He pushed up on his knees and began to peel off his jacket.

Leela gently helped him to remove it. She noticed his tee shirt had soaked through with blood under the left shoulder blade. She frowned briefly before resuming her smile.

Struggling with his tee shirt, Fry hadn’t noticed her frown. When she reached out to help him, he felt the touch of her hand briefly against his skin. He fought hard to control his body’s response. “Think of blernsball” he thought.

“Stand up,” she commanded.

Fry struggled to his feet. Leela extended her left hand to steady him. Once he was on his feet, she waited for a moment before saying, “Well?”

“Well what?”

“Well,” she replied with a smile, “do I have to take your pants off, or can you handle it?”

Fry blushed crimson. “I can handle it. You need to turn around.”

Leela turned around, still smiling her smile.

Fry remove his trousers and shorts. He stood naked and more embarrassed than he’d ever been in his life. “What is wrong with me? It’s just Leela,” he thought. He picked up his tee shirt from the floor and used it to cover his groin.

“Okay Leela, you can turn around now.”

She turned around and began to laugh, “Now you turn around so I can check your wounds. I’ll have to remove the dressings before you take a shower,” Fry turned around obediently.

Leela stepped forward. She carefully removed each dressing, examining the wounds as she did so. They looked okay, she noted with satisfaction. Good, she could go ahead with her plan.

“Fry, I’ll run the shower for you.”

“Thanks Leela, I feel a bit shaky.”

She reached out and took his arm, leading him to the shower. After turning it on she turned her face away and stuck her hand out, “I’ll take the tee shirt to the laundry. You won’t need it in there.”

Fry gave her the tee shirt without comment and bolted into the shower. He closed the door behind him and stood under the cascade of hot water. He could feel his muscles relaxing. “Oh that feels good,” he said out loud.

“Fry, you need to wash up.”

How long he stood under the water, he had no idea. After what seemed like an eternity, he heard the door click behind him. “I’ll wash up in a minute, Leela. I just want to enjoy the water a little while longer.”

He nearly fainted when he felt her body press against his. Her hands came around him and took the soap from the shelf. Without a word, she began to soap his back. His knees felt as if they would give way.

“Uh, Leela, I appreciate…”

“Oh hush, Philip.”

Her hands began to massage his shoulders as the water continued to send steam billowing in the shower stall.

“Think of blernsball,” went through his mind, over and over again.

Leela reached around and soaped up his chest, his breath became ragged…almost labored.

He felt Leela pull away. “Here Phil,” she said while handing him the soap, “you get to soap your own personal areas. Don’t soap them too much.” She gave a short laugh.

He looked over his shoulder at her. It was then that he saw she was still wearing her bra and panties.

“I’ll let you finish, then I’ll get my shower.” She stepped out of the shower, closing the door behind her.

Fry finished quickly and stepped from the shower. Leela was standing there wearing a bathrobe with a towel in her hand. “Dry off and lay on the bed. I’ll dress your wounds after a quick shower.”

Obediently, he toweled off, then stretched out on the bed. It was so warm and comfortable that he was unable to stay awake.

He awoke to a gentle touch applying anti-bacterial gel to his wounds. “Thanks Leela,” he mumbled, still half asleep.

“You’re welcome, Phil.”

Suddenly, he was wide awake. She had called him Phil!

He attempted to roll over to face her, but she gently kept him on his stomach, “Easy tiger, just relax until I get your dressings on." She finished the job, “Okay Phil, just close your eyes.”

“Close my eyes?” he said shakily.

“I just want to get the lights.”

The lights…she was getting the lights…what should he do?

The lights snapped off. He could sense her moving though the darkness, heard her slide into the bed.

“Leela.”

“Yes, Phil?”

He made up his mind, “Leela…I love you…and I always have.”

There was a brief silence. The darkness seemed to assume a weight that threatened to crush his spirit.

“I love you too, Phil.”

He felt as though his heart would leap from his chest, “Leela, I don’t know what to say.”

He could almost feel her smile through the darkness, “Don’t talk Phil. Just love me.”

Aboard the Planet Express Ship, Traveling Through Time

Fry propped himself up on his right side as he looked at Leela’s sleeping form. He watched the rhythmic rise and fall of the sheet that covered her body. Her face was peaceful. Every few minutes, the ghost of a smile would flicker across it.

How beautiful she was as she slept!

A strand of hair had fallen across her face. He reached out and gently brushed it back into place. She moved slightly and muttered something he couldn’t catch.His mind ranged across all of the things they had been through together. How many planets had they been to? How many times had she saved his life? He couldn’t count them all.

He thought back to their first meeting, how he had been impressed by her uniqueness. Her being a Cyclops had only strengthened the attraction he had felt for her. So often it had seemed as if there was no hope for them. Now they had spent hours in love’s embrace.

How could he ever live without her?

His peaceful contemplation of the loveliest person in his universe was abruptly terminated by the bedside alarm going off. Leela’s eye popped open and she sat bolt upright in bed. Her hand shot out and hit the alarm button.

She smiled at Fry, “Good morning, Phil. Did you sleep well?”

Fry returned her smile, “Best sleep I’ve ever had.”

She reached out, gently touching his cheek, “I’m sorry that I wasted so much time with my doubts. Can you ever forgive me?”

“Forgive you,” he asked in a voice full of surprise, “what’s to forgive? I love you Leela, and I always will.”

“I love you too.” She looked at the clock, “But we need to relieve Amy and Cubert. I’m sure they are exhausted.”

She slid out of the bed, striding gracefully over to her clothes closet. Fry admired her as she walked. He made up his mind, “Leela, can I ask you a question?”

As she slipped on her bra and panties, she turned to him with a smile, “As long as it’s not about my eye…is it about my eye?”

They both started to laugh. Leela got dressed as quickly as she could. Then she came over and helped Fry finish getting dressed. She knew that he still had trouble raising his arms.

“Seriously, Leela…I have an important question.”

She kissed him gently on the cheek, “Okay, what is it?”

He gulped, “Will you marry me?”

Leela paused for a second, then burst out in tears, “Oh Phil…oh Phil” was all she could say between her sobs.

Fry put his arms around her, “Please don’t cry Leela, I didn’t mean to upset you.”

She returned his embrace, “I’m not upset. I was afraid that you wouldn’t want me after we slept together…but I couldn’t help myself. I love you so much.”

Fry kissed her cheek, “I want to be with you forever, Leela. Please, marry me.”

She looked thoughtful, “Are you sure you want to marry a mutant?”

“Why should that matter? There are people who would call me a mutant. Besides, haven’t you always said you liked older men? How many older men do you know?”

She smiled, “You make a pretty strong case.”

He fell to one knee as he took her right hand in his, “Turanga Leela, will you marry me?”

Her eye glistened as she leaned forward and kissed his forehead, “Yes Mr. Philip J. Fry… I will.”

Aboard the Planet Express Ship, Earth Orbit, June 6, 3004

The blue aura surrounding the ship blinked out. On the bridge, Leela looked at the instrument panel with relief. They were back only two minutes after they had left. She turned to Amy, “Nice work, Amy.”

Amy started to speak, but Leela added, “Good job, Cubert.”

Fry, who was perched very tentatively on the couch next to Bender chimed in, “Way to go guys.”

Bender drew out a cigar, lit it, puffed a ring of smoke and remarked in a voice dripping in sarcasm, “I don’t see why you coffin stuffers are so happy. You’re just going back to your loser lifestyles. What the heck is so great about the 31st Century?”

Leela started to make a snappy comeback, but she realized that Bender was really upset about the wedding. Fry was his only living friend and she knew he didn’t want to share him. She spoke softly, “Bender, I’m sorry you feel that way. You can come visit us any time you want. We’ll still work together.”

Bender broke down, “It won’t be the same. I’ll miss you, Fry. I’ve actually had two friends…you and Alton More. Now, I’ve lost you both.”

Fry put his arm around Bender’s shoulder, “You can’t lose my friendship, Bender. We’ll always be buddies.”

Bender stood and walked off the bridge, “It’ll never be the same…never be the same.”

Cubert spoke up, “Do you want me to check out his circuits? He seems awfully emotional for a robot.”

“He’s not just a robot,” Fry replied, “he’s my friend.”

Leela decided to head off an argument, “Let’s continue this discussion after we land. Next stop, Planet Express building!”

The ship sliced through the atmosphere under Leela expert guidance. Soon they were setting down in the Hangar Bay of the Planet Express building.

As Leela powered down the engines, Fry rose from the couch. As he walked over to Leela’s side, Cubert and Amy left the bridge as if on cue. He leaned over and kissed Leela gently on the cheek, “We’re home…home to our new life.”

She reached up and touched his cheek, “Married life,” she smiled, “are you sure you just don’t want to live together for a while?”

He shook his head, “Nope. I want you always and forever. We may as well tie the knot.”

Leela rose from the captain’s chair and took Fry’s hand. Together they walked down the landing gear stairs into the Hangar Bay. Amy and Cubert had already disembarked. They were already in the meeting room, talking excitedly with the Professor and Hermes. Bender was nowhere in sight.

As Leela and Fry prepared to enter the meeting room, the front doorbell rang. Since they were closest Leela said, “Let’s answer it, Phil.”

Eager to please, he nodded, “Okay.”

The doorbell rang again. “Keep your shirt on, we’re coming,” Fry called.

Fry opened the door. Both he and Leela gasped at what they saw. Fry actually shouted, “My God, it’s Joe Liebgott!”

The Planet Express Building, June 6, 3004

Fry threw his arms around Liebgott. “Man is it great to see you!” Without loosening his grip, Fry then cut loose with a barrage of questions, “Were you frozen, like me? How long have you been in New-New York? Is anybody else with you? What’s with the beanie?”

Liebgott gasped, “If you let me loose, I’ll answer.”

Fry released his death grip, “Sorry…you took me by surprise.”

Leela chimed in, “Joe, it’s a real surprise to see you.”

Liebgott smiled and said, “I hate to disappoint you, but I’m not the Joe Liebgott you’re thinking of…I’m his 28th Great Grandson.”

The smile left Fry’s face, “Oh.”

“My name is Joseph Liebgott. As for the beanie I am Rabbi Joseph Liebgott and I am a Chaplain in the DOOP Navy. You are a legend in my family…a bit of secret history. Grandfather Joe entrusted a few things to his descendants. He remembered everything you ever talked about, trust me.”

Leela looked dubious, “Everything?”

“Believe me, the man had a memory like an elephant! He sent you a letter, a recording, and these.” With that, he held out a pair of silver jump wings. “Here…take.”

Fry extended his hand. He took the silver jump wings in his grasp, turning them over. They were engraved…one with the inscription “P.J. ‘Red’ Fry” and the other with “Turanga ‘Dorothy’ Leela.”

Leela murmured, “He even remembered how to spell our names.”

Liebgott looked around, “Where’s the robot…Bender? I have a set of wings for him as well and a bottle of booze.”

At the mention of the word “booze” Bender’s voice came from within the Hangar Bay, “Keep your shirt on coffin stuffer! I’ll be there in a second.”

Bender emerged from the shadows where he had been sulking, “You sure are the spitting image of old Liebgott. Where’s my stuff?”

Liebgott reached into his pocket and handed Bender the silver wings. Bender just tossed them into his chest cavity without looking. He frowned, “Come on, you mentioned booze. Don’t hold out on me.”

Liebgott took off his backpack and pulled an obviously old bottle out of it. “This,” he said dramatically, “is from your old friend Alton More. He gave it to Grandfather Joe in 1950. It’s the last of the Calvados you two dug up in Normandy.”

Bender reached out and took the bottle silently. He looked at the bottle, then tucked it quietly into his chest cavity. “Thanks,” he said softly.

“You’re welcome.”

Leela asked, “You mentioned a letter and a recording. Do you have them with you?”

Liebgott smiled sheepishly, "Oy! I almost forgot." He fished around in his backpack. Then he pulled out a small tape deck, “Grandpa Joe said you’d recognize this.” He pressed a button and a big band tune began to play a song from the distant past…a song they had heard a thousand years ago yesterday.

You are to me…everything,My life to me…everything,When in my dreams you appear,There stars and deep blue appear,Each time our lips…touch again,I yearn for you…so much again,You are my favorite star,My haven in heaven above,You are everything I love.”

A tear rolled down Leela’s cheek, “Fry let’s play this at our wedding.”

Fry was fighting tears and could only nod his assent vigorously.

Liebgott took the letter from backpack. It was obviously ancient and had been laminated to keep it from falling apart. He held it out, “Do you want to read it or would you rather I read it to you?”

Fry, still swallowing hard, motioned to Liebgott to read it. As he read, Fry had images if his friend flit though his mind.

Dear Red:

Hey Buddy! If all goes well, one of my descendants is reading you this letter…or you are reading it yourself.

I have to pinch myself when I think back to those few days and nights in Normandy when we became friends. You saved my life. I’ve never forgotten it.

Letter writing isn’t one of my skills, but I want you to know that I’ve prayed every day that you and Dorothy (I know her name is Leela, but she’ll always be Dorothy to me) get married. Nothing beats having a good wife and kids, unless it’s having grandkids.

Let Tin Man know that he was one of the last people that Alton More spoke about before he passed on.

As I said, I’m not much of a letter writer. May you enjoy a long and fruitful life in the future. When the going gets tough remember the spirit of Curahee!

Your Friend,

Joe Liebgott”

Both Fry and Leela were weeping when Liebgott finished the letter. Bender was sniffling too.

Fry turned go Bender, “Old buddy, don’t think I’ll ever let marriage interfere with our friendship.” Leela said softly, “Bender...You will always be a part of our family. Please don’t let our marriage come between you and Fry.”

Bender suddenly grabbed Leela and Fry in a fierce hug, “You guys won’t get rid of me that easily. Wedding receptions are great places to pick pockets.”

All three stood there and laughed. After a few moments, Liebgott cleared his throat, “Well, I’ve done my job. So, I’ll be going.”

Leela had a sudden impulse, “Rabbi Liebgott…would you conduct our wedding ceremony?”

Liebgott looked puzzled, “Are either of you Jewish?”

Fry spoke up, “No. But can’t you do a civil ceremony?”

Liebgott paused for a moment, drawing a deep breath, “Why not? Yes, I would be honored to conduct the ceremony.”

Leela smiled as she turned to Fry, “Now we have to do is pick a date. I’d say this all has turned out rather well, wouldn’t you?”

Buddies