The Other, Part 16
By Rye Guy
As the docking bay doors to the Planet
Express close over the ship, Hermes and the Professor step up to the
descending stairs of the ship. Skyler, Bender, and Amy appear at the
top of the stairs.
"What the hell took you three so
long?" shouts the Professor angrily.
Skyler shrugs. "Well, we ran into
some unexpected delays."
"Yeah, but nothing we couldn't
handle!" exclaims Bender patting Skyler on the shoulder. Skyler
cringes in pain and grunts holding in the scream. Bender taps his
fingers nervously on his chassis. "Er... uh, you can't walk away
form every victory unscathed, right?"
Hermes pulls back Skyler's jacket and
stretches out the collar of his shirt to see the gun shot wound.
"Sweet biggolo of jiggolo! What happened to you?"
Skyler covers the wound. "I got
shot, alright? It's no big deal."
The clacking of crab claws grows louder
as Dr. Zoidberg approaches from his office. "Did someone say
Skyler turns quickly. "No! No one
"Here, let me take a look."
he grabs Skyler, turns him around, and examines his shoulder. "My
God! We need to get you into my office right away!"
"No please, I'm fine."
"Nonsense. I'll fix you up in a
jiffy." Zoidberg then grabs Skyler and tosses him over his
shoulder. Skyler tries to escape but finally gives up when Zoidberg
shuts the door behind them.
The Professor and Hermes look back to
Amy and Bender.
"What happened up there?" asks the
Professor. Bender and Amy shrug as they try to come up with a
"I can explain," says Leela.
They all look up to see her descending the stairs.
The Professor stomps his foot. "Leela!
I told you not to go with them! I should have known that's why I
haven't been able to contact you at your home!"
Leela raises her hands in defense. "Hey,
calm down Professor. I'm alright, see? No harm done. I told you I can
still work... wait, why have you been trying to contact me?" she
asks quizzically. Normally, the only people who'd ever call her at
home were Fry, Amy, and Bender whenever he needed to take his anger
out on someone.
"Because there's someone here to
"It's dat Zapp fella'," says
Hermes pointing down the hall. "He's waiting in the lounge."
"Hmmm, wonder what he wants."
she begins walking down the hallway to the lounge. Behind her she can
hear Bender and Amy beginning to explain the events of their
delivery. She enters the lounge to see Zapp and Kif facing out the
window. "Hey guys. What's up?"
They turn to her. "Leela, I wish to
speak with you for a moment."
"Is Amy here?" asks Kif.
"Yeah, she's in the docking bay."
"Thank you," Kif heads out
for the hangar.
A dead silence fills the room between
the two captains. Leela finally meets eyes with Zapp. "So, what
brings you two here?"
"It's like this, Leela. The DOOP
have been asking alot of questions about what happened. Kif and I
have managed to cover it up until now. Now, officials are bringing up
eyewitnesses, security camera videos, debris from Nibbler's ship, and
strange power surges detected by their sensors. We've run out of
excuses and we don't know what to say. I was hoping you could help."
She shrugs. "I don't know what to
tell you. To be honest, I don't even know what to tell myself. It's
like I was saying to Bender the other day, everything's changed
now... for all of us. But, now, I'm going to go on a search for Fry.
Maybe when I find him, things'll start to make more sense."
"Leela, I'll be more than happy to
let you use any of my ships in your search. Just say the word and
I'll have as many ships and crewmen at your beck and call as you
She smiles. "Thanks. But I think
it'd be better if I just went in my ship with my friends. But, you're
welcome to come along if you want. Both of you."
"Are you sure?"
"You surprised me by the change
you've made. I'm now happy to call you a friend." She puts her
hand on his shoulder and the two share a grin.
After a moment, Zapp returns his eyes
to the window. "So, when are you planning to leave?"
"First thing in the morning. I
want to find him before the baby's born."
In the docking bay, Amy and Bender
finish their story as Kif enters.
"And that's what happened,"
Hermes scratches the back of his head
and sighs. "What's going on around here? Dis is all too much..."
"Yes," the Professor adds.
"This is unlike anything I could have ever imagined."
"Oh, Kif!" exclaims Amy as
she kisses him very passionately.
Kif smiles and looks into her eyes.
"Wow! I'm happy to see you too."
There is a sad silence as Leela and
Zapp join them. Bender stares up to the ceiling.
"I wonder what Fry's doing right
"I know..." says Leela
shutting her eye and smiling "...right now, he's watching the
stars pass by in the crystal clear sky. Right now he's thinking about
the future with high hopes."
She opens her eye, still smiling; the
glow from her smile breaks the depressed mood in the room.
In Zoidberg's office...
Zoidberg is finishing up sewing
Skyler's shoulder. He cuts the end of the string with his claw and
goes to put his tools back on the table.
"There you go Skyler, all set."
"Thanks doc." Skyler stands
and reaches for his shirt.
Zoidberg turns to him. "You know,
I can remove all those scars for you. I've got a surgical laser right
here that's used for eliminating scars."
Skyler glances at him for a second then
puts his shirt back on. "I appreciate the thought, but I'd
rather keep them."
"Let's just say there
are... memories attached to each of them. And as painful as those
memories are, they also remind me of why not to give up." He
slips on his jacket and begins walking out the door.
"Give up on what?"
Skyler looks over his shoulder as he
stands in the doorway. "There are some things that are better
He walks out, leaving the good doctor
The next morning...
The sun rises, filling the sky with the
bright hopes and dreams of one Tarunga Leela. The sunlight shines
through the window of Bender's apartment. The usually messy bed is
now made; the sheets are neatly folded, the pillow fluffed; and
Skyler is in the bathroom shaving. After going the past few days on
Battletopia 7 without shaving, he's got a rough shadow across his
chin. He drops the razor in the sink and tosses his jacket over his
shoulder, holding it with the ends of his fingers. He knocks on
"Bender, get up! Come on!"
The door opens and Bender yawns. "What
time is it?"
"It's dawn," responds Skyler
with a smile. Bender shuts the door. "Bender!" Skyler
pounds on the door "Bender, open this door! We need to get
going." Fed up, Skyler grabs the bottom of the door and forces
it open. Once Bender sees how strong Skyler really is, he cowers.
Skyler grins. "Good morning. You ready?"
"S-s-s-sure," stutters Bender
Later at Planet Express...
Amy searches through the entire ship.
She checks each and every room.
"Leela? You in here?"
She heads to the bridge. "Leela?
Where is she..." she asks herself.
As she exits the ship, she sees Hermes
and the Professor.
"Hey, have either of you seen
Leela? She said to be here at dawn, but that was two hours ago."
The Professor shakes his head. "Sorry
Amy, haven't seen her."
"It's not like Leela ta' be late
for work," says Hermes scratching his chin.
Amy takes a seat at the conference
table. "Well, this is an important day. I mean, I can't imagine
what she's going through."
They hear the door open and eagerly
turn, expecting to see Leela but instead see Skyler and Bender.
"Morning," greets Skyler.
Bender looks around for a second,
though still waking up. "Wait, where's Leela?"
"We don't know," shrugs Amy.
"Don't worry guys. Let's just be
patient. She'll be here," assures Skyler.
Meanwhile, down in the Turanga home in
The guilt has weighed down on Leela
since Fry went missing. Not only did she feel responsible for what
happened to him, but she felt guilty about leaving her parents out of
it all. She felt like a hypocrite. She had always dreamed of having
parents that she could come and talk to about anything, but here she
was, keeping something so big from them; something they were unwittingly
She sat, slightly slumped in the easy
chair, with her dad sitting on the couch. Her mom walked in carrying
a tray with three glasses of tea and a pitcher. She set it on the
table and joined her husband on the couch.
"So, how have you been sweetie?"
Leela sighs. "Not too good
"Why? what's wrong?"
Leela sits there in silence for a
second that seems to last for minutes until her dad sits up. "Now
Leela, if there's something wrong, just tell us."
"I want to so bad. But I don't
know how. I'm afraid."
"We're your parents, pumpkin."
"You don't have to be afraid,"
Leela grinds her hands nervously and
looks down to the floor. "It's Fry... he isn't on a business
trip... he's missing."
"Missing?" Munda and Morris
gasp simultaneously. "What happened?"
The scar on her arms begins to burn
slightly. "I'm not sure exactly how to explain."
Munda reaches over and wraps her
tentacle around her daughter's hand. "Try starting from the
beginning," she says with a warm yet concerned smile.
Back at Planet Express...
The Professor approaches Skyler in the
"Skyler, may I see you in my lab
for a moment?"
He follows the Professor upstairs to
his lab where they can speak in private.
"So what's up?"
"Tell me, did you have more of
those blackouts on Battletopia 7?"
"Can you please explain what
happens when you do black out?"
Skyler shrugs. "Not much to
explain; everything goes dark, my head hurts, then I pass out."
"Hmmm..." The Professor steps
over to the counter and begins searching through the cabinet above
"You mind telling me what all this
"You see, Skyler, my sensors have
detecting strange power surges for a while now."
"And you think they have to do
The Professor nods. "Yes. Well, I
didn't at first. It started when you blacked out during our X-mas
party and my sensors picked up a surge at the exact same moment. They
detected one a few nights before. I remember I saw Fry and Leela walk
out of here together that night, and an hour or so later there was a
surge. I also felt one the night after you came here and another
during your delivery to Battletopia 7. So I've been meaning to ask
you about it."
"Well, I don't know anything about
it," responds Skyler defensively.
"Now now, calm down. I only wish
to conduct an experiment."
"What kind of experiment?"
"I want to observe you here in my
lab when you have another black out."
"I hate to disappoint you, but I
don't know when that'll be. They all just happen from time to time."
"Is there something specific that
Skyler's face droops as he hops up and
takes a seat on the table. "Normally whenever I begin thinking
about my family, or whenever I'm around things that remind me of
"Oh, I see... the others told me
all about it. But, nonetheless, I still want to conduct this
"Why? What's the point?"
"I don't know, damn it!" he
shouts. He sighs and calms himself down. "Since that night, I
don't know what the point is to anything anymore. And then you showed
up and, I'm not sure why, but I feel some kind of connection with
Skyler's eyes widen.
"And I'm not the only one who
feels this way about you. All of us do."
Morris and Munda stare at their
daughter in disbelief. Leela however, can't stand to look her parents
in the eye. Munda stands and walks upstairs. Leela jumps to her feet.
She looks to her dad, she is just as
lost as she is. She stands and follows her mother upstairs where she
finds her in the bedroom digging through a drawer of her dresser.
"Mom, please understand-"
She cuts her off. "Leela."
Leela freezes and sits on the edge of the bed. "I know we haven't
been a part of your life until recently, but I want you to be honest
with us. We want you to trust us."
"I know mom, okay? I know. But put
yourself in my position. I was worried, I didn't know what to do."
she buries her face in her hands to hide her tears. "I was scared
because of what had happened, but even more so because I feel like
somehow there's still more ahead."
Munda sits down next to her daughter
holding a small wooden box in her lap. She opens it and pulls out a
photo of a normal looking older woman with gray hair and two eyes.
"This is your grandmother, Leela."
Leela admires the photo. "She's
"Yes, and she was probably the
most warm hearted woman on Earth. You see, she and my dad were not
mutants like us."
"It's true. But, for some reason I
was born like this. My dad wanted to give me away, send me to the
sewers; but my mom said that everyone deserves a chance at life. With
that, he left us, so she had to raise me all alone."
Leela stares at her mom in awe as she
"It wasn't easy living on the
surface. Eventually we were forced down here in this very house."
"Mom, not to sound mean, but what
are you getting at?"
Munda's warm smile seems to set comfort
in Leela's heart as she puts her tentacle around her. "When we
were forced to live here, I was worried because I was unsure of what
was going to happen. Much like you are now. And she said something to
me that I'm going to pass on down to you. She said, 'The past is all
that's gone, the future is yet to come.'"
Leela shrugs. "But what does it
"It means that the future is
unseen. Keep your faith alive and everything will work out." She
places the photo back in it's box and slides it back in the drawer.
She then stands places her tentacles on Leela's shoulders. "Don't
let the fears of your past haunt your future. Everything will work
out, you'll see."
Leela stands and hugs her mother
"I always knew you were meant for
great things, Leela. But this is beyond my wildest imagination."
She kisses Leela on the cheek. "Now go find your husband."
An eager smile grows on Leela's face as
her heart fills with hope.
To be continued
Well folks, it's been a while hasn't
it? I've been busy with working two jobs, going out with my new
girlfriend, and trying to get into college. So I'm sure you all can
see why it's taken two months to get this chapter up. I hope I didn't
disappoint any of you. And don't worry, chapter 17 will be up sooner
than two months because I've already gotten a good start on it. I do
want to thank Graham and Extwist for their continued support through
all that I've gone through. And thanks to all of you who have stayed
with this story. Trust me, it is far from over. Everything that's
happened so far was just a cake walk compared to what's going to
happen. So, stay tuned, chapter 17 coming soon...