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User:Hawl/TWREpilogue:We'll RIDE Again Someday

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Together We RIDE - Epilogue

Planet Zharus, Venars 149 AL, 2499 AD, December 31st. 26:15

Venars

It had been little over a year since Aristo’s attack on Venars.

Official reports had shown that Aristo unleashed a virus that caused people to hallucinate and believe they were Integrates. Sadly these people had died from this virus. Of course that was just the cover story, in reality they really were Integrates, now living in the late Aristo’s enclave, Triangle Lighthouse and they were fine. It was impossible to tell the public of the existence of Integrated kind, not without awakening the ire of Fritz, the king of the Integrates and no one was ready to rattle that bird’s nest or lynx’s rather.

This did include Simone Bertrand, few will remember her as the woman who saved Venars. The one human woman who knows the whole story, Paula Reverbek, was granted control over her bussiness, La Wrench Of Paris, previously named Le Wrench Of Paris. No matter what it was called it was now closed. Though it had picked up in bussiness, the RIDEr population increased from a very small niche crowd to being not popular, but everyone knew at least one person with a fuseable RIDE. The Mini-RIDE business saw a huge boom as people craved protection, but not physical bodily changes.

Right now Paula and her new assistant, an old friend, a black man with green hair by the name of Kane, only off the ship a month were in the middle of town drinking hot cocoa and manning a small booth with a few homebrew programs Kane had made up for sale, were waiting for the ball to drop at midnight. “It’s a shame Dad and Simone couldn’t be here… I hope she’s enjoying New Years..” Paula said while playing an old game on a tablet to kill the time for when another customer would show or when the ball would drop and usher in not only a new year, but for those who followed the AD Calendar, a new century as well. The game was nothing complex just an old Oil Age game called Christmas NiGHTS Into Dreams about a Jester in a santa-like outfit who flies through a Christmas Dreamland.

“I thought she was dead.” Kane said, looking at a nearby statue of a Skunk Fuser. One with a plaque that read “Simone Adora Bertrand and Lucille La Skunkette, two brave women who gave their lives for Venars. They will never be forgotten.” and went on to list the years of their life. “Simone Bertrand 102 - 148 AL” and “Lucille La Skunkette 142 - 148 AL”

“Oh uhh, yeah, but I meant, like in Heaven and stuff…” Paula saved herself, almost forgetting for a second that the marshalls had sworn her and her father to secrecy on the Integrates. Something that wasn’t hard to do with how often Simone would show up at the shop in disguise, having done so since her funeral. She never let it be too obvious, but she knew how to give Paula subtle hints that it was her. “Simone’s a good person, she would get into Heaven.” at first she was worried that her lack of past tense would tip Kane off, but he wasn’t questioning it.

“Was she like… you are? I’m sorry if that’s an inappropiate question. I mean I know you weren’t the manliest individual.. but.. I.. I’d never have guessed you’d be…”

“Her name was Simon when we first met, but no, she’s not like me. I had gender dysphoria, she just woke up one day and said she wanted to be a girl…. Lucille talked to her into it.”

“People just decide that? Well shit, anyone could be a tranny. I’ll have to be more careful with how I talk to people.” Kane said aloud, but no sooner than he had said that that he realized he had put his foot in his mouth.

“Definitely” Paula said annoyed, shooting her friend a dirty look for using the T-word. “Though in many ways that’s the beauty of it. I just wish mom realized it.” She said with a small frown. After the Venars incident, her mother became convinced that RIDEs were destined to be nothing more than harbingers of destruction scheming to one day overthrow man. Mr. Reverbek didn’t share the opinion, as such he had been divorced and his ex-wife moved to Nextus. Though she approved of the idea of qubits tech, she just couldn’t bare to be around RIDEs. A sentiment shared by most of Nextus. Ironically, though her son’s crossing was one of last straws, she was genderjacked on her, now his, move there by an Alpha Wolf attack. He has yet to share this detail with the family.

Triangle Lighthouse

149 AL, Dry Ocean. Triangle Lighthouse. 28:36

Though three Integrates of Venars, and the several from elsewhere created in Aristo’s attack could not return to their homes as they so desired. They were given something, the Triangle Lighthouse itself! After cleaning the place up and clearing it of Aristo’s goods the place was given to Xhyz to house the new Integrates. Though the marshalls did a thorough investigation, no one found out what happened to the arm that Aristo left behind. It had been assumed it was destroyed in the chaos of the event.

Though the Integrates now missed their friends and families, begging for the day that someone would finally let out the secret that Integrates exist in order to be with their loved ones again. Xhyz had used a human disguise in order to let a few who were willing attend their funerals but most didn’t have the stomach for it. All those crying relatives, giving them such an urge to show themselves. Just to hold close husbands, wives, daughters, sons, friends, aqquentinces, hell even a few enemies and tell them the truth, but that was expressly forbidden.

To celebrate the New Year, many were having drinks and enjoying the musical talents of a few karaoke singers, a few people didn’t need autotune to sing, they were the most beloved of all. Right now Simone, Fioshawott, her lesbian lover Shamie, Xhyz, and his surprising mate LucyPop who had been temporarily retired until the heat died down, were sitting at a table, enjoying a rendition of Still Alive from Zediel who had taken a female form similar to how she looked as Gabrielle outside her fuser in order to sing the song as effectively as possible. It was only when she stopped that someone had informed her the song was originally sang by Jonathan Coulton and thus his gender bender was temporary. Zediel didn’t seem as annoyed by this as she should have been. “Without Dysphoria, all I did was look nice.” she had commented.

“Vouz know I ponder why vouz didn’t sing Discord, It just seems like zat would be more your thing.” Spoke the heavy french accent of Simone-Lucille.

“Blegh, I hate effeminate defecation such as the Equine Of Small Stature That I Have Ownership Of Series.” Zediel scoffed, well this did explain why he rolled his eyes around Luna, an Integrate who came to look and act just like the character from the show of that name. She even walked on four hooves.

“Vouz mean Ma Little Pony.” Simone-Lucille corrected, sometimes Gabrielle had actively decided to replace words with a more complicated version of that word, it seemed to have gotten worse after as Zediel. “I find it unusual that you would refuse to give something a chance for zat reason..”

“Why is that?” Zediel asked not understanding how comments like that look when you have long hair and ample bust.

“...Nice tits” The skunk with the green glow replied jokingly.

“Thank you, the hardlight upgrade Trike gave me is really good. Say what you want about The Enroygalls, I’ve said it all already, they made really good technology.” Zediel smiled, rubbing her bosom together and laughing.

“Well that went right over your head.” Simone sighed.

“Why do you keep calling me Trike? I do have a name.” Charles the Triceratops RIDE asked, carrying a tray of drinks attached to his top two horns. He was the only Non-Integrated member of Triangle Lighthouse, he just didn’t have anywhere to go after the Aristo affair

“Yes, and that title is Trike, isn’t it? Served in Nuevo San Antonio, with a guy named Matt? What happened to him anyway? I was sided with Nextus during that affair so I wasn’t really in the loop.”

“I’m Charles, you’re definitely thinking of someone else.” Charles informed. “By the way Simone, you’re up next.”

“Oh merci Charles.” Simone smiled, petting the dinosaur on his beak. The skunkette ran up to take the microphone and sing a song. Her selection, Bad Romance by Lady Gaga, was predictable if you knew her. After changing her hardlight outfit to a blue ensemble with cleavage and the side of her curves showing, one that had gloves but no leggings, the original singer of the song wore something like it in one of her music videos.

She was all about to start when a stranger walked in, no one recognized him at first that was until Charles, Xhyz, and Zediel got a good look at him, but someone was able to get in just fine, bypassing all the security measures, almost as if he helped build the place. Possibly because he did. “I need to speak with Simone-Lucille.” The stranger spoke up, Simone looked in his direction and saw that it was Shyver and Prometheus.

“.....Shyver, you have a lot of nerve!” Simone growled, quickly she hacked the karaoke machine with her Integrate Powers and changed her song selection to something more appropriate. Especially appropriate since Shyver proceeded to take a seat as close to the stage as possible.

Simone took the mic and began to sing, the new song selection was one that stung Shyver and reminded him greatly of why she didn’t like him anymore. The thing he had came here to make right.

Simone sang with conviction.

I'm getting tired of your shit You don't never buy me no-zing! See everytime you come around You got to bring Jim, James, Paul, and Tyrone See why can't we be by ourselves sometimes See I've been having this on my mind For a long time I just want it to be You and moi Like It used to be Baby But ya don't know how to act So matter of fact I think ya better call Tyrone And Tell him come on, Help you get your Shit!

Shyver knew this song was intended for him, he was wounded by the honesty of Simone’s words, but that angelic voice of hers and that adorable accent were making him fall for her all over again. Sometimes it was hard being a man, this was one of those times. A time when he must admit that he was wrong, a time for guilt, and emotions that men don’t always like to admit to having. A time when a gender known for pride and control would have to confess shame and fucking up. No amount of gender therapy nanite overuse by any society could nullify gender roles enough to make this easier. Still, Shyver had to suck it up, this song and these feelings were not as much punishment as he deserved, he came here fully realizing that.

Simone was finishing her song, the whole crowd was loving it, after all who couldn’t enjoy some Erykah Badu, especially Zediel, Lucypop, Charles, and Xhyz who understood the situation and the song choice’s reason.


I'm going to tell you le truth Show and prove Or get la boot I think you better, Call Him And tell him come on Help you get your shit You need to call Tyrone Call Him Hold On But ya can't use my phone

“This song was dedicated to my ex Shyver! Shyver, you and Prometheus are still separate beings. I gave you a handshake only an Integrate would be able to return during le song, so if you came here on false pretenses too bad. And if you came here for some more of the finest french pussy in le dry…” Simone, or Simone-Lucille as some of the Integrates called her, closed her eyes focusing her thoughts on the various nanites dormant within her body. Her intoxicating and divine feminine physique, or barbie doll figure, it depended on how attracted you were to paper thin waists with motorcycles parked next to each other for hips and enormous blimps for breasts, shifted and become the well muscled and chiseled physique that Lucille could have designed if she had been a male PSA instead. The lightsaber handle shaped bulge in Simon-Luke’s pants made the PSA part very obvious. “I’m fresh out!” His voice now gruff, deep, and manly though still had an obvious french quality to it.

“....Simone, Simon… That’s not going to make me any less attracted to you.”

“I did not know vouz were bisexual.. I still despise vouz regardless. Relgilda, get Shyver out of here.” Simone turned away from the fuser in disgust.

One of the Integrates, a female griffin who grabbed Shyver’s paws. “And to think I used to work for you..” Relgilda said, dragging him away. Only for Shyver to break away and run towards Simon.

“Simone. I want to get something straight, myself. In more ways than one, like most heterosexuals, I love tits and ass. I’m attracted to you though not because you’re normally so shapely and round in all the right ways… but because, you’re the one I love and nothing can change that.” Shyver took a chance and rubbed the furry face of the one his heart yearned for. “And that’s why I want to make this right.”

The air was tense, no one knew how this was going to go down. It was like one of those damn soap operas, everyone was affixed to the sight of the two, technically four, men. Not even Simon-Luke knew what to say. Finally Zediel spoke up. “Mr. Bertrand, Mr. SKN(m)-PSA-817. Shall I evict this creeper from the premises for you? He won’t escape my grip, because I’ll kill him if he does.”

“....Me and Lucille are talking it over…” Simon said, having been so deep in thought he hadn’t actually noticed Shyver touching him. “Shyver, raise the facemask… You have five minutes, you and me, la desert. Obviously bring Prometheus, the desert at night is no place to be without a RIDE. However there is one condition zat you must agree too.”

Shyver rose Prometheus face mask and nodded with a look of the face sincerity frozen upon his face. “Anything you wa….”

Simon immediately decked Shyver right in the face knocking him to the ground and began walking to the exit. “Condition fulfilled, let’s go.”

Shyver’s bloody nose hurt like a bitch, but he had no time to argue, he had five minutes and he needed to make use of them.

For the first minute nothing was said, Simon didn’t really want to talk and Shyver had a lump in his throat. Eventually it was Lucille who broke the ice. “It’s weird. I was never designed to take on a male form, but with Simone’s ability to adapt to new bodies with simple modifications to her sense of self, I don’t mind being a guy… It’s odd. I was never designed for this and yet I’m doing it. I guess that’s just being human.” Lucille said giving her, technically his body a little stretch. “..But that’s not important right now.. What is is that you and Prometheus have come back. I expected to see you Prometheus, in an auction somewhere, I intended to buy you and if Simone didn’t want me touching Shyver I’d be all over you, but… How are you two here? You Shyver should be in a maximum security prison.”

“I worked with Mr. Peaches, that dragon who broke the dome…” Shyver was in the middle of saying.

“Yes I remember him.” Lucille nodded.

“Not only was I able to help him finish his work, but I helped him make real progress on his amontallido research. Well that and being very rich doesn’t hurt, I’ve dropped from billionaire to barely a millionaire but I managed to get only misdemeanor charges.” Shyver laughed. “Some wise investments will have me back on my feet.”

“People like you you can buy their way out of trouble belong in a guillotine.” Simone snapped.

“...Simone, I came back because what I did was wrong and there are better ways to make amends than rotting in a jailcell that may or may not be located in Sturmhaven and be legally classified as a zoo.” Shyver shuddered and drank from a flask which he put back in his fuse-jacket’s pocket.

“Nothing you can do can make it up to me, you erased my memories! I saw the file that Prometheus left with my other half. In the excitement of that day she forgot to check it, but… had I known I would have killed you. Now I’m here, stuck in the desert, unable to help my family because I happen to be legally dead and on various no-fly lists because of you!”

Shyver grabbed his flask and drank more. “Want some? It’s whiskey, generic stuff. It tastes like a mixture of shit and paint thinner.” he said taking another sip.

Simon grabbed it and threw it across the desert, further than Shyver could see. “You are trying to apologize with booze.”

“I was being friendly! Damn it Simone, what I did was wrong, I thought there was a way I could have both you and Aristo. But… now I have neither, I’m alone and I can’t get over you. Just please, let me help make it so you can tolerate me again.” Shyver pleaded, taking two pieces of paper out of his jacket pocket and offering to the skunk.

Simon looked over the pieces of paper, they were tickets for a flight to Earth leaving January 2nd. “Valid only for Shyver and Lucille Bertrand. One Way, The Red Baron…… Lucille Bertrand?” the skunkman said looking up at Shyver. “Why don't you have a last name printed? Vouz DO have a last name right?”

“....I'll explain later. But yeah, Simone Bertrand is on every no-fly list imaginable, so are a lot of people who are supposed to be dead, so is Simon, but with how many people crossover and migrate to this world making a fake identity is as easy as breathing.” Shyver assured. “I can get you onto that ship, get tickets for your family, and I can help bribe our way past security if they get suspicious of you. Not to mention, I’ve read fifty contingency plans Aristo made for an Integrated Sleeper Agent on Earth. The last thing you want when getting your family onto Zharus is getting found out and starting an interplanetary situation.”

Simon shifted back to her feminine form, looked back at Shyver, then back at the tickets. Deciding to walk away, into the desert sands beyond what Shyver or even Prometheus could track. He stared at the tickets, and at the cold dry ocean before him. “...Well Prometheus, we tried… Take me to Uplift. There’s bound to be some good employment opportunities there. After that, go be with Lucille.”

Prometheus defused from Shyver and began to turn into a skimmer, it was only halfway through this change when the two heard a muffled voice from the horizon. Upon looking, something black and four legged appeared to be chasing towards them. Assuming it was an escaped RIDE coming to attack them, Prometheus went full speed ahead, but the black quadruped was only getting faster and faster. But the first just sped up. Eventually it was becoming too obvious they weren’t going to ditch this thing, Shyver swallowed and embraced what would be thrown at him. Especially when it jumped up and tackled Shyver off of his skimmer. “I’m actually surprised I was fast enough to catch you without turning Skimmer.” Spoke the beast, spitting a silver flask out of its mouth.

Shyver looked into the creature’s eyes and saw a blue eyed skunk the size of a wildcat. “...Simone? Is that you?”

“Oui oui, I was going to be right back. Zere was no need to jet off.” Simone shook her head and nosed the silver flask forward. “Here, and I still don’t trust you Shyver. But I need to save my family before the third rock gets them killed. Prometheus, you can’t come with us but, it is rather nice to see you again.”

“And it’s good to you too Lucille, I assume she can hear me?” Promethus asked.

The skunk’s eyes turned red as she giggled. Turning to Lucille’s voice. “Yeah, I had Simone turn quadrupedal so I could show you we could. I know how you’re not into humanoids… You know I’m tempted to integrate you to Shyver so that you can come with us… But Simone says I can’t.. We’ve agreed to put a lot of our functions on a setting that requires a unanimous decision..”

“Go ahead, it’s what I deserve, after I did it to you…” Shyver said flinching, preparing for it.

“It is less than what you deserve!” Simone’s voice screeched her eyes turning blue again. “I was pissed at the dishonesty and treason. Being an Integrate is… rather nice. I wouldn’t go back if you paid me. Even if I could access my precious garage again...... I said we’d be gone five minutes and you aren’t trusted. Let’s go back so they don’t worry. There are some guest quarters you can sleep in… go ahead and retire, I think Lucille wants to show Prometheus around so don’t wait up for me.”

Shyver nodded in agreement, he didn’t really have anything to say. “Alright, if that’s okay with Xhyz…. By the way did he ever find Aristo’s arm?” He only had heartwarming empty promises

“Non, but he’s been searching for it frantically. Why?” Simone asked taken aback at what seemed to be a very random question.

“Just thought it was odd that it went missing. Well it was made of sarium, maybe someone ate it….” Shyver shrugged and followed the skunk who proceeded to walk back to the enclave still in her quadrupedal form. “..Glowing Furries who eat spacerocks… and Aristo wondered why I didn’t want to be one… No offense.”

“None taken.” Simone-Lucille replied.

Once the two were back in the enclave it wasn’t long until Shyver was able to join in the festivities as though he were one of the crowd. People were distant at first, but upon Simone’s insistence that he was cool, a gesture done not in good will, but in a game of keep Shyver, not happy, but feeling friendly until she was on a ship headed to see her family. After a few drinks Shyver and Luna even took the stage and sang a duet of Nightmare Night. Some questioned why sing a Halloween song on New Years, but most of them were far too drunk too.

This was the last song for the night as it was time to watch the ball drop, various screens showing various Laurasian Domes including, Zharustead, Kyotokyo, Florencina, Femizona, and of course Venars. All the Integrates plus Charles, Shyver, and Prometheus gathered around and cheered, counting down, all wearing funny glasses available as 2500 and 150, reflecting the AD and AL calendars respectively.

10! 9! 8! 7! 6! 5! 4! 3! 2! 1!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

As per tradition, a few of the Integrates kissed shortly after the 25th Century turned to the 26th. Simone even kissed Shyver to the latter’s shock, she had even grabbed his and Prometheus’ rear end. “So you don’t hate me anymore?”

“Non non, of course I hate you darling. Zat was for Prometheus.” Simone-Lucille giggled, though Shyver didn’t know what it meant. At the time the skunk’s eyes were purple showing that they were neither Simone nor Lucille at that moment, but an amalgam of both. This was their usual state barring any unusual circumstances. “Oh hold on a second…” she said, she was getting a message from someone.

::Happy New Century Simone, I hope Fritzy, Xhyz, or the Marshalls let you come back soon.:: Spoke the mental voices of Paula and Ruby.

::Happy New Century to you too ma cheri. I’ll be in touch when I can, but for now… well I can’t say much about where I am or where I’ll be. You never know who is listening in on this.:: Simone-Lucille sent back. ::Take care La Wrench for me.::

::You got it, mon amie.. hehehe..:: Paula giggled, the french was technically incorrect as both parties were female, thus ma, over mon, was the correct word to use, but Simone was no grammar nazi. Even if she was it would only ruin the sentiment that Paula was trying to convey. The garage was in good hands, though she’d prefer it in the hands of a Bertrand, Paula would have to do. If her father considered Simone an honorary Reverbek, than Simone could consider Paula an honorary Bertrand.

::I’m going to miss you Paula, I really am… and I wish I could explain why.:: Simone said looking up at the ceiling as though it were the sky. ::Prometheus will be staying at the garage for awhile, do not sell him, Shyver will be back for him.

::SHYVER! That scuzzbucket? He isn’t going to try anything funny is he?:: Paula protested

::I don’t know yet, but please till we meet again, be well.:: Simone wished she could have assured her friend better than she had.

Zharustead

The day was finally there, Shyver was waiting for the ship to begin boarding and with him a beautiful redhead with a Cape Nord accent, in actuality Simone-Lucille in disguise. “The Red Baron, owned by the same company that runs the Spruce Goose. A Laurasian answer to the famous ship that stops by Gondwanna, well of course it wasn’t built in Laurasia what with the embargo and all… Speaking of, your shield are working well?”

“Working as well as can be Shyver. I reckon I should be able to get through that there EMP just fine.” Simone or, “Mrs. Lucille Bertrand” said in the accent she had downloaded off the net. Her name now included the title Mrs. instead of Ms. as it was believed that an independent unmarried woman hailing from Cape Nord raised too many questions.

“You sound like Applejack or maybe Bunnie Rabbot from that Sonic comic book.” Shyver laughed to himself. “It’s just… so not you.”

“Now wait just a dern minute, twas your idea for my voice to go all rootin’-tootin’ on me!” Simone argued, but Shyver just shook his head.

“I said tone down your accent because it makes you sound Earthish, I didn’t say do all this.” Shyver defended himself.

“I’ll change it on the ship.” Simone said slightly flustered.

The two waited for a while, Shyver deciding to show Simone one of his favorite Oil Age games on his tablet, The Secret Of Monkey Island, as they waited for a now boarding sign to show. The two had just started the part where they use insult swordfighting to help prove Guybrush Threepwood as a pirate. “I will milk every drop of blood from your body.” The swordmaster said.

“Oh now that there is easy I tell you what, the answer is…” Simone and her ridiculous new insult were suddenly cut off.

“How appropriate! You fight like a cow!” Spoke an unfamiliar voice from behind the two.

“...Yeah that…” Simone and Shyver turned around immediately to see two unfamiliar looking gentlemen and a woman. “Do I know you?” asked Simone.

“I would hope so, I’m your totally-human landlord!” One of the two men said with a smile. They looked unnoteworthy, as though they had specifically chosen the blandest and most generic features imaginable. Beyond that the two looked like they could have been siblings. The main difference between the two men were their lynx and snow leopard tags, but even that wasn’t suspicious as feline based RIDEs were some of the most common on the market next to foxes, hell many of the earliest RIDE prototypes were lynxes. “You’ve been a good tenant Lucille so me and my associates wanted to see you off.”

“I’m reckoning that this cowpoke right here is Ze…” Simone was about to say pointing at the gentleman

“No one important Mrs. Bertrand, someone how just worked at El Wrench Of Texas once. Let’s leave it at that.” The snow leopard tagged man smirked.

“Oh, I hear you friend.” Simone nodded.

The lynx eared man put his arm around the tigress eared woman and briefly scratched behind her ears, smiling at her, before asking Simone. “So me and the Mrs. were wondering if you two knew anything about an arm a previous tenant may have left behind? You know what they say. A good arm can’t be replaced, not even by nanites or fab fluid.”

“I would love to ask you the same question, but since you don’t know that would be redundant.” Shyver said, looking back to the ships and seeing a now boarding sign flash up for the Red Baron. “We better get going.”

“Ze… Leopard-Ears… take care of her for me, you know she was always the klutz of our group. But when ya can, just say howdy for me. Don’t tell her where I am obviously.” Simone said picking up some of her luggage and heading towards her flight.

“I will and, Mrs. Bertrand….” Zediel replied

“Yeah?” Simone said looking in his direction.

“Return to this planet in one piece with your family and we will have a legendary celebration.” Said the disguised Zediel. Giving Simone one sharp look.

“O… ou… Oui oui!” Simone nodded, it was actually a slight strain forcing herself to say her usual french instead of more Cape Nord Cowboy Talk.

There was nothing left to do but go through the EMP Scanner. A machine that detects for and sends EMPs to destroy any nanites or Zharusian technology to ensure it remains away from the prying eyes of Earth. The woman looked at Simone strangely when she was reluctant to go through. “Are you sure it’s safe darlin’? I’ve uhh.. never been through these.”

“Only if you’re sure you’re not a RIDE in disguise.” The woman operating the machine laughed.

::Shyver what do I do? I’m basically a walking technological singularity, this thing will kill me…:: Simone sent as she stood

::Simone, you’re going to be fine, I promise. I’m at least 60% sure.:: Shyver attempted to talk Simone through this, but her fears were not eased.

::And that other 40%!?!?!:: The skunkette in disguise as a woman objected

::You’ll be slightly braindead until I can find something to make as close to repairs as I can without sarium.:: Shyver confessed.

::How much is slightly!?!:: Simone spoke up in an obvious panic.

::Not much:: Shyver failed to clarify. He was usually an honest person when he wasn’t being influenced by crazy cyborgs with dreams of Integration and universe wide domination, in all likelihood it probably was a negligible amount.

::Very re-assuring…:: Simone gave a mental sigh and slowly approached the EMP Scanner.

“Uhh Ma’am, you’re holding up the flight. If you don’t step through you’ll cause the flight to get delayed. It’s a one year trip, people are anxious to get started.” The spaceline employee said. “It won’t hurt and I can’t let you on board without it.”

“Okay fine… but if a single hair on my body is put out of place..” Simone threatened the woman. “God I sound like Paula…” she said as she swallowed and walked on through. She wasn’t sure what to expect, maybe she’d go skunk right in front of everyone!?! After all, most of her shape shifting was done through hardlight projections. She didn’t have to do it that way, it was just faster and burned less energy in the long run. “Alright when does this thing start?”

“Are you kidding? You just cleared, didn’t you feel that tingly sensation? That was the nanites being evaporated. You’re free to go on the ship now.” “I see… I guess it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. Hehe, that’ll teach me to be yellow bellied. Hehehe. Come on Shyver…” Simone laughed nervously as she went onto the Red Baron with Shyver, as soon as they were out of earshot she spoke to him again. “I don’t think it even broke my shields.. what the heck happened?”

“Mmm. Integrates are techno-organic creatures. Made out of neither metal nor meat, but a weird combination of the two that I don’t get and the only reliable notes were destroyed in the ACE Evolutions bombing. I guess you and your machine-like internal organs are just too organic to really be affected by EMPs…” Shyver assumed.

“Then how did Aristo’s thunder bruiser effect me?” Simone asked remembering how crippled that attack made her.

“You were stabbed with a hardlight beam saber with a couple thousand volts running through it, no one is going to look good after that no matter how stern of stuff they’re made of.” Shyver reminded.

“Fair enough….” Simone shrugged, she wasn’t satisifed by that answer but could not think of a fitting counter argument. “Look, I still hate you and probably will for a long time… but it is sweet what you’re doing for my family… So… don’t make a big deal out of this but.” The frenchie pretending to be a nordie smiled at the overweight panda eared man and kissed him. The inside of the Red Baron was built more like a hotel than a plane. Made sense, no one could be expected to remain seated for an entire year. Except for those in the lowest class avaliable on the ship who would remain cryogynically frozen for the duration. Sometimes even the richer planet goers choose that route. From their point of view it was just a brief 365 Earth Day nap, almost as if they got on just to be thrown out a few seconds later. Like many surgical patients on planets without nanite medicine who go in pondering when their surgeries start only to be told they’ve been over for a little over an hour. However, Shyver really wanted the time to be a kiss ass, so, he opted for first class for the two.

Once Shyver and Simone were aboard the ship, the former began filling out a few papers to get the room keycards for their suite. Simone just smiled and flipped her voice modification software off. “Ooh la la it’s great to speak la langauge de’love once more!” she giggled to herself, this was it, nothing could stop her now. In one year’s time she would see her old family again, most of all his brother Pierre and their mother. Simone’s father had left to find his fortune in the stars ages ago and no one knew what happened to him.

An old, old, incredibly old love song came on the ship’s PA System to help relax the passengers all anxious to get off the ground and into the great black yonder that was the cosmic ocean and all Simone could think to do was sing along with

In the arms of the night’s embrace The starlight shines down upon your face Illuminating your eyes so bright As we run together into the night Silly fools with silly dreams, together eternally Come out and play, we’ll spread our wings and fly

This summer will last forever We’ll laugh and sing and play whenever We’ll wake up late, and rule this town I’ll always come around, just you and me and a love That’s meant to be!

It was only a short three minute and thirty three second song, but Shyver joined in just for the final verse. Taking a short break from the paper work to live in the moment with the integrated apple of his eye.

Silly fools with silly dreams Summers never last it seems Summer WILL last forever We’ll laugh and play and sing whenever We’ll wake up late and rule this town I’ll never let you down

And even when the summer’s ending And real life seems so condescending We’ll grow together, you and I Just you, and me, and a love That’s meant to be!

The End Ending Credits song is “A Summer In The Stars” by Forest Rain, give it a listen it’s good. Simone-Lucille and Shyver will return to Zharus in Omniverse OverRIDE Part 1!