A Kim Possible Fanfiction
by Greg Fisk (aka "Slyrr")

Kim Possible is owned/copyrighted by Disney and its affiliates, etc. etc.

Chapter 10:
Control
Or: No Stones Unturned

Maze stood nervously in the Immersion Pod, surrounded by wires. The hum of electrical power was all around him and he seemed almost afraid. 'This device is alien to me.' he said, staring at the wrist and leg harnesses as of they were poisonous snakes.

Monkey Fist stood patiently outside the pod. 'Nevertheless, if you wish to proceed with your plan, you will make use of it.' he said, and he glanced back to where the other devices stood hooked to the pod by their cables and connectors. 'An explanation of the science may be lost on you, but to set your mind at ease I will attempt it. You are aware of course that many electronic devices called satellites are in orbit around this earth?'

Maze nodded, glowering. 'Of course, I am not a child.' he said.

Monkey Fist bowed slightly. 'Then you also know the purpose of many of these satellites is communication - the broadcasting and reception of signals of various kinds.' Maze nodded again, and Monkey Fist continued. 'As much as it grieves me to admit, I took this concept from.... Ron Stoppable.' and he said these last words with a pained grimace. 'In an encounter several months ago, he created a device called the Mega Synaptic Transducer, which reversed the good and evil tendencies of everyone on earth.'

'I remember...' said Maze, but he did not elaborate any further. He waited for Monkey Fist to continue.

'When the Transducer was destroyed and I was freed from its influence, I was struck not by the Transducer itself, but by how the buffoon had managed to broadcast his signal over the entire globe. It took some time and research, but I learned that he made use of technology that allowed him to hijack the many satellites around this planet and use them to broadcast his signal.'

Maze again nodded. 'I see.' he said. 'And this... machine you have built will do the same thing?'

'Not exactly.' he answered. He looked again at the Immersion Pod and the devices connected to it. 'As I have said, I'm not a scientist, nor an engineer. I have not duplicated the device the buffoon created. To accommodate my lack of skill, this machine is much simpler and much less powerful. For the moment, we will only be able to use it to control one satellite at a time, and affect small areas. But there is the added bonus that our labors will be untraceable.'

Maze's eyes narrowed. 'Small areas?' he said.

Monkey Fist chuckled. 'Only when you consider how vast the planet is.' he said. 'Rest assured, I am already making arrangements to expand the reach of this machine. You have seen the benefits so far. I am still drained, as I was when I first used the Yono's power. But this machine enabled me to affect the entire town of Graniton, not just one individual at a time. There is some fine tuning that must be done - after all, this is the first time this technology has been tested in broadcasting mystical energies rather than electronic signals. But I'm certain your own powers can be used similarly.'

Maze shook his head doubtfully. 'I still have my reservations.' he said. 'There is nothing natural about this device.'

'Not natural, you say? It is made of metal, which comes from the earth. It is powered by lightning - electrical power harnessed and channeled into a form that can be used safely.' Maze was frowning, but did not move from the Pod. Monkey Fist continued. 'If it helps,' he said, 'Think of it as a tool. A lens that will focus your natural gifts and allow them to be used in their purest form.'

Maze sighed, but gripped the handsets on the armatures. Monkey Fist smiled, and closed the door to the Immersion Pod. Maze flinched as the harnesses snapped into place and the helmet lowered over his eyes. 'Relax.' said Monkey Fist, moving over to the computers nestled among the devices on the stone tables. 'It will not harm you. On the contrary, I think you'll find the results quite visionary.' And he increased the power.

Maze gasped. The reach of his power and his awareness of shadows had always been like a field around him. It was the field of awareness in which he could communicate with crows, and work his shadow-medicine. But it had always extended only a few dozen feet around him. Now that field suddenly encompassed several square miles. He could feel the presence of every crow within that field, and knew that they were suddenly aware of him.

He stood as if in a wide grassy field, with legions of black crows swirling in the skies above him, their harsh croaks sounding in his ears, promising their obedience. And he smiled, spreading out his arms, issuing the call....

Monkey Fist stood near the entrance to their lair. Beside him was a large box, filled with hundreds of tungsten metal spikes. He raised his head. In the distance, a black cloud was moving against the wind, coming closer.

Dozens of crows fluttered down, their cries filling the air, and more were approaching from further away. They clustered around Monkey Fist, each one taking a spike, which Monkey Fist fitted patiently to their beaks. As each one was fitted, it turned and flew away, wheeling and flying towards the village of Graniton. Maze guided them carefully, amazed that he was able to direct the actions of so many at once.

Monkey Fist went back inside the lair once a sufficient number of birds had been fitted with the spikes. He carefully monitored the machines. He was concerned about the time it had taken the crows to come the lair, and how long it would take them to reach Graniton. There was a fair distance between the two locations, and with the machine's current limitations, there was a limited window in which to operate at full effectiveness. He anxiously watched every tick of the clock on the desk.

In Graniton, wind blew through the silent streets. Lights shone pale from some opened doors and onto the darkened streets. The townspeople stood motionless as the night continued. Then from a distance, a faint sound began to wash over the silent town, growing steadily louder. There was a sudden flutter of wings as crows sped over Graniton, nearly invisible shapes that circled in the night blackened sky above.

The crows were lighting onto the arms of each petrified resident. With the metal spikes on their beaks, they pecked and scratched until each statue had three strange symbols etched onto the backs of their left hands....

Monkey Fist quickly approached the Immersion Pod where Maze remained, the helmet still over his eyes, his mouth slightly open. 'Can you hear me?' Monkey Fist called through the plastic shield of the Immersion Pod.

'Yes...' Maze answered, this his voice was a low whisper.

'The work is only partly complete.' Monkey Fist said. 'The marks have been made, now you must set them...'

Maze nodded, then began a muttering chant.

Emet - Sipimottakiksi,
Nikaahtomaana nitaanistsi'toyiiwa...

'Concentrate!' Monkey Fist called. 'Focus your will on Graniton.'

The night shadows swirled unnaturally across Graniton like a vast black creature. The crows took flight and scattered, but the twenty petrified citizens of the town did not move. The marks etched on their hands suddenly glowed red and smoked, until they were branded black in the stone.

'It... it is done!' said Maze in triumph, but even as he spoke, his vision of Graniton, the crows and the statues faded to nothingness. He gasped and shook within the Immersion Pod for a moment, then heard the faint hiss of the hatch opening.

'Easy...' said Monkey Fist, helping Maze out of the harnesses and the helmet. 'No need to panic.'

'What happened?' said Maze, looking back at the Pod. 'It stopped working...'

'There is nothing wrong.' Monkey Fist answered. 'As I said, at the moment we can only control one satellite at a time. The satellites still move within their orbits, and the one we were using just now has passed out of range. It will return eventually, and others will be within reach as well....'

'When?' said Maze eagerly. 'The marks have been set - we must see if the medicine has worked!'

Monkey Fist laughed. 'Only a short while ago, you were afraid to use this machine.' he said dryly. 'Perhaps you may yet be converted to the miracles of technology. Patience!' he added, as Maze looked back towards the Immersion Pod. 'Too much of a good thing and all that. You may be too elated to notice, but you are quite as drained now when you animated statues without the machine's aid.'

And indeed Maze fell suddenly to his knees, wheezing. 'Then we must... go to the town ourselves.' he said. 'I must know....'

'I agree.' said Monkey Fist. 'But rest for a short while so you can conceal us properly. There is no particular rush - the town is backward and isolated. And I think it is safe to say, the residents are not going anywhere.'

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Grimm Probable was soaring through the air on the Ksikkihkíni, keeping an eye out for birds or other obstacles in the sky. He gripped the handlebars tightly, his expression was dour behind his helmet. Rueful's head poked out of Grimm's pack and over his shoulder, his whiskers bent nearly backwards by the rushing wind.

'No dice, huh?' Jade's voice sounded timid and worried, as if afraid of how Grimm might react.

Grimm's eyes flicked momentarily to the screen on the dashboard as he answered. 'The objective failed.' he said. 'But I wouldn't say the trip was wasted. I'm coming away from it with two things I didn't have before. First, the knowledge of where Rhonda is now, with an inkling how to get her back.' Grimm paused for a moment.

'And.... the second?' Jade ventured.

'Sore knees.' Grimm muttered.

'Well what do we do?' Jade said. 'I mean, if it was a question of busting her out of a high-tech lair or a prison I could do it in cracker-jack time. But I don't have an IP router in the spirit world!' and she made exaggerated air quotes with her fingers as she said the last two words.

'I'm not giving up on getting help from the Great Bear Spirit.' Grimm said. 'But... this is gonna take time. I'm not sure what the Great Bear wants or if he even wants anything. However he operates, it's not something that can be programmed, categorized or easily referenced.'
Jade raised an eyebrow. 'Or done at the drop of a hat?'

Grimm shook his head. 'No.' he said. 'But while I'm finding out how to commune with the Great Bear or until it actually happens, there's always another route we can try - finding Maze and persuading him to let Rhonda go.'

'Uh huh....' said Jade, her voice sounding nervous. 'And... you're sure you want to do it this way?'

'Positive.' Grimm answered. 'I've gone over things in my mind a hundred times, and it's our best option. I've already sent out a feeler. Hopefully it'll smooth the way a bit.'

Jade ran a hand over her face. 'Cheese Grimm, you've spent half a year winding her up - you really think she's just gonna roll over and play along?'

'I don't like it either Jade.' Grimm said. 'It means undoing some pretty neat work. But this time, to get the job done, we may have to do a deal with the angels.'

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Kim spent another harried day at school. It was hard to focus on her studies, as distracted as she was. Her dream the other night had still rattled her - as real as it had felt. On the plus side, she was finding that taking care of Rufus wasn't nearly as much of a long term hassle as she thought it might be.

It wasn't so much Rufus' needs or all the items on his list that had been difficult the first time around. It had been Ron's constant phone calls, asking if she had remembered each item on the list which had made it seem more difficult than it actually was. Without Ron pestering her though, she found Rufus quite manageable. Though again she felt empty inside, thinking she would gladly put up with the calls because it would have meant he was back.

Barkin had apparently been convinced that Ron was really missing, because he gave up heaping extra homework on him and having Kim pick it up. When she asked if he had any more, he muttered vaguely about waiting to let Ron finish his current assignments, then waved her off.

She felt momentarily touched. 'Thanks Mr. Barkin.' she said softly. He merely waved her off again with an incoherent grunt. Cheer practice hadn't gone quite as smoothly. Bonnie was still Bonnie, and even Ron's absence didn't stop her from making her snarky comments. She seemed to think that while taunting Kim about Ron may be off limits, she was certainly able to taunt Kim personally. But Kim had been dealing with such things since she first made cheerleader, and it didn't faze her much.

Work also seemed dull and empty, even though Monique was there. Maybe because Monique more than anyone else seemed to be treating Kim like a spun glass ornament that might break if she said the wrong thing.

An hour before end of her shift, Kim was putting all the clothes back on the shelves and hangers which the customers had pulled off and rumpled over the course of the day. 'Why don't you go home, girlfriend?' Monique called from behind the counter. 'I can close up.'

Kim saw through it at once. 'Monique - you've already covered for me. I can handle it.'

Monique sighed. 'Kim, you've been surrounded by the hippest fashions all evening, but you look like a zombie without any brains to eat.'

'Gorchy....' Kim said, but with only the shadow of a chuckle.

'The point is, you may as well go home because I can tell you're not really here.' Monique leaned over the counter. 'You're planning out ways to find your BF - or planning to plan out ways to find him.'

Kim looked at her keenly and sadly. 'Going home won't do me any good right now, Mon.' she said. 'I don't know where Ron is - even Wade doesn't know. We have to wait for Monkey Fist to make a move and then make him tell us what they did.' She sighed. 'The waiting game tanks.'

'There anything I can do?' Monique said kindly, then immediately bit her lip. 'Snap, that sounded so stupid!' she thought.

But Kim was smiling and shaking her head as she continued to restock the shelves. 'Not just now.' she said softly. And neither she nor Monique spoke again until the shift ended.

She was driving home after work when her dashboard let out a familiar four-note beep. 'What's the sitch, Wade?' she said eagerly. 'Did you find...'

'Woah, Kim! It's not about Monkey Fist.' Wade said quickly, and Kim stopped. When Kim didn't say anything else, he went on. 'There's a hit on your site. An investigation job. A man named Grayson Slate has been trying to call his father in a town called Graniton - a small town in rural England. He hasn't been able to get through. None of the phones in town are answering and he wants someone to check and make sure everything there is all right.'

Kim shook her head. 'Wade - I hate turning down jobs. But doesn't this sound like something the phone companies in England should be doing instead of us?'

'At least it's not a puma in a tree.' said Wade. Kim didn't take her eyes off the road, but Wade could see she was glaring. 'Kim - I know it's not what you're hoping for. But maybe you could use the distraction....'

'I don't want to be distracted from finding Ron!' Kim said. 'This mission sounds like a zero.'

'It's someone who still needs help.' said Wade. 'And I think Ron would have been glad there were no villains involved...'

Kim seemed to deflate slightly. 'Way to play the 'Ron would have' card.' she said, but seemed to smile again. 'All right, I'll pick up my gear from home. Do you feel up to sidekicking?'

Wade seemed startled. 'Me?'

'I think Ron would have wanted you to come in his place.' Kim said, her smile widening.

Wade sputtered. 'Oh... you...' he said. 'Well, are you sure? The last time I came along, a mansion exploded...'

Kim's eyes flicked down for a moment. 'I think I've already done the exploding manor bit for the time being.' she said. 'Lightning can't strike twice, right?'

Wade shrugged. 'I'll fix up a ride. Swing by and pick me up once you're geared.'

'Please and thank you!'

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Mrs. Possible was going through the mail in the kitchen when she heard the front door open. Firm, thumping footsteps ascending the stairs told her it was Kim. A few seconds later, she was pattering her way back down and rushing through the kitchen on her way to the door leading to the garage. 'Missionmomgottagobebacklaterloveyou!' she was saying, but Mrs. Possible held up an envelope.

'Letter for you Kim.' she said. 'You should take it before you go.'

Kim lurched as she paused, her hand reaching for the door, and sighed impatiently. 'If it's another college acceptance form or a credit card offer...'

'It's neither.' said Mrs. Possible. 'There's no return address, but it looks like a personal letter.'

Kim picked the envelope out of her mother's hand and opened it. Inside there was only one small square of paper, and on the paper was written a single sentence.

Help me reach a friend in darkness.

Kim was confused, but then saw the initials "GP" at the bottom of the note. She glared, then wadded the note into a ball and threw it in the trash on her way out.

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'Thanks for letting us take the Sloth in the cargo hold, Clutch.' Kim said to a muscular man with a wide chin, a red jacket and silver hair. 'It'll save us a lot of time once we hit the UK.'

'Least I can do for the girl who found my missing co-pilot on that Amazon adventure.' replied Clutch, who smiled back at her while he worked the controls in the pilot seat.

Kim smiled faintly at him before returning to her seat towards the back of the cargo plane. She was still feeling glum, considering the mission a waste of time. But she buckled herself into her seat and took out the photograph of the missing person which Wade had scanned and given her. She memorized his features so she could recognize him at need.

In the next seat, Wade had on a pair of magnifying goggles and was tinkering with a pair of devices in his lap. A set of delicate tools were in a compartmentalized pouch on the armrest next to him and he looked very focused. 'What are you working on?' she said.

Wade was soldering a component in place and didn't look up. 'Just stuff I meant to finish at home later tonight...' he said.

His voice sounded like he was paying even less attention, so she resumed studying the photo. After several more minutes, Wade seemed to pause in his labors and she raised her voice again before he could get re-absorbed in his work. 'So how was it figured that it would be easier to send in a girl from half-way across the globe as opposed to just sending a cop car from any nearby city?' she said. 'I mean, everyone knows how I feel about wasting energy...'

Wade shrugged as he focused his goggles and began making adjustments with a needle-thin screwdriver. 'They're having trouble finding someone to get out there.' he said. 'Graniton is a really small small town without a police station and no crimes are known to have taken place in decades. Plus, all the surrounding areas are stretched pretty thin. Something about having their people cleaning up at a site where someone's manor mysteriously got turned into a pile of rubble...' He let his voice trail off with a faint smile.

Kim sniffed and pretended to be studying the photograph again. But her thoughts drifted back to the note she had thrown away and wondering what it meant. Had Grimm really sent it? Was he just trying to dig further into her head or mislead her again? Was he in on the scam with Monkey Fist and Maze? She hadn't been sure at the UNIT lab, but there had been so much uncertainty and weirdness that she wasn't even sure about her uncertainty any longer.

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Maze and Monkey Fist stood in the main street in Graniton. Several crows were perched on the gables of the surrounding houses, sending an occasional echoing croak through the air. Monkey Fist looked at Maze and nodded. Maze nodded back, and then raised his staff.

'Follow.'

The gray figures of several statues around them began to move. From the thresholds and doors of the houses they came, silent except for the thumping of their feet, until they stood in a semi-circle in front of Maze and Monkey Fist.

Monkey Fist smiled. 'I doubt there are any prying eyes nearby.' he said. 'But just in case, let us move to the plains behind the town and conduct our tests there. It will be advantageous to the plan if you can order them to obey my commands as well.'

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Clutch announced that they had reached the drop point. Kim and Wade entered the Sloth and buckled up. Wade reclined his seat as far as it would go, looking frightened.

The clamps were released and Kim saw Wade's hands clench around the armrests of his seat as the Sloth rolled forward and out of the cargo hold. His eyes were closed by the time they were clear of the plane and he was biting his lip when the Sloth's booster jets fired a few seconds later. 'This was more fun when I was just watching out of my screen...' he gasped.

Kim saw the road leading to Graniton far beneath and zooming up rapidly. Soon the tires touched down with a lurching squeal. 'Eyes open Wade, we're down.' she said. 'Graniton awaits!' They drove down the empty road and the mountains on either side loomed higher. A tiny clutch of houses and buildings could be seen in the distance, and before long they were there.

Kim exited the Sloth and Wade followed, seeming a lot less steady on his feet. They left the car parked by the side of the main road next to one of the houses. The sky was overcast and gloomy, though some rays of sun were leaking through the clouds to cast mottled patches of daylight on the nearby mountains. A gust of wind blowed, sending a plume of dust rolling down the street. A shutter caught by the breeze creaked faintly. They walked down the street, their footsteps echoing in their ears.

'Looks like England's party central.' Kim said, but her voice seemed to fall dead even as she spoke, and the humor was leached out. They were about half way down the main street. The atmosphere was like a museum or a library where any sound felt somehow forbidden and unnatural. Nothing moved. They saw the doors to several of the houses standing open, and some lights were still on. 'So where is everyone?'

Wade was moving his scanner back and forth as they walked. 'It's zero across the board.' he said, his voice lowered as if he were afraid of disturbing something. 'Total weirdness - no life readings, no sonic vibrations, no heat signatures - nothing.'

'Let's check inside the houses just to be sure.' said Kim. 'You take this side of the street, I'll take the other. We meet back here in ten.'

The search took a remarkably short amount of time. The houses were all unlocked, and small enough that going through them was no great chore. She called out occasionally as she searched, but no one answered. Each house was undisturbed, with no sign of any struggle. Some had meals sitting cold on the tables. It was as if everyone had simply gotten up and walked off into the blue, leaving their homes abandoned. She met with Wade again in the main street. 'Did you find anything?' she said.

Wade shook his head. 'Just like Flannan Isle.' he said.

Kim raised an eyebrow. 'Wade, if it wasn't in Teen Scene, I don't know it...'

Wade spoke in an eerily low voice.

Aye: though we hunted high and low,
And hunted everywhere,
Of the three men's fate we found no trace
Of any kind in any place,
But a door ajar, and an untouched meal,
And an overtoppled chair.


Kim stared blankly at him. 'It's a famous English poem.' Wade said. 'I'll look it up for you... once we're away from here.' he glanced around nervously at the surrounding, empty homes.

'Well, before that happens, we should check the area around the village.' Kim said. 'Maybe there are tracks or something if they all walked off...'

Wade didn't seem sorry to leave the ghost town behind them. They went behind the houses on the west side of the street, and though Kim couldn't see anything, it wasn't long before Wade piped up. 'Got something!' he said. 'The scanner's showing a trail of heavy footsteps, leading off in that direction.' and he pointed to a rocky plain some distance away.

As they walked, Kim caught occasional glimpses of a footprint when they crossed dustier patches. But for the most part the terrain was hard and bare and showed nothing. When the town was starting to dwindle in the distance, they reached an area with several large boulders and outcroppings, and Wade's scanner seemed to lose the trail. He stopped and stood rotating in a small circle, sweeping the scanner around. After several seconds in which only the whirring of the scanner could be heard, she was about suggest going to higher ground. Then she felt a chill as she heard a voice speaking a short distance behind her.

'Well, well.... the cheer squad. And before you ask - no, I never get tired of saying it.'

Kim turned, and standing a distance away on top of an outcropping of stone, Monkey Fist was staring down at her, his lips curled into an expression of calm smugness. 'Monkey Fist!' she said. 'What are you doing here? What did you do to the people in this town?'

'What am I doing here?' said Monkey Fist darkly, 'I was going to ask you the same question.' He paused, looking down at them carefully. 'But I see that you weren't expecting to find me here. I suppose it's just another of the curious coincidences that keep drawing us together.'

'Yeah, you're a regular beau.' Kim answered. 'Speaking of which, are you ready to tell me what you did to mine yet? Because if you don't start talking, what happened to your manor is gonna seem tame compared to what I've got in store for you.'

Monkey Fist seemed to sigh in exasperation. 'Another constant.' he said. 'Always saying you want to talk, but in the end your conversations are little more than leaping and kicking.'

'Only when the bad guys don't cooperate.' she growled.

'Very well.' said Monkey Fist, shaking his head. 'But before we begin - there's something I want to tell you. I hate you, Kim Possible. I hate your chirpy optimism. I hate your constant meddling. I hate the way you're always somehow interfering with my plans. I hate you from the soles of your feet to the ends of your infernal, flippy red hair!'

Kim glared, wondering why Monkey Fist was taking time out to insult her. But she looked and saw a light rising around him as he continued to rant. Then his eyes suddenly flared with a yellow light and twin beams lanced towards her.

'Kim!' Wade shouted, but ust as the beams struck her, a blue and white sphere of light expanded around her like a bubble and the yellow beams were deflected.

Wade rolled out the way, and when he looked up again, Kim's outfit and jacket had been torn apart by the field that surrounded her. She was dressed in a white body suit with bands of glowing blue. She stared back up at Monkey Fist, her face set, but very much unharmed and unpetrified.

'The battle suit!' Wade cheered. 'Way to go, Kim!'

'Interesting....' said Monkey Fist. But his voice was quivering and he hunched over as if a great weight had suddenly been laid on his shoulders. 'So nice to see you wore your Sunday best...'

'I wasn't sure when I'd meet up with you again, Monkey Fist.' Kim said. 'So I decided to bring the suit along, just in case.' Monkey Fist glared, but remained bent over, his teeth gritted. Kim smiled faintly. 'Looks like using the Yono's power takes a lot out of you.' she said. 'I wasn't expecting that, but I'll take every advantage that comes up.'

Monkey Fist sank to one knee. 'And you think this will enable you to win?' he snarled. 'There is more to my power than you guess, Kim Possible!'

'And I know more about your power than you guess.' she answered. She went on, hoping to goad him into calling Maze for help, or otherwise revealing where he was. 'Give it up, Monkey Fist. Bring Ron back and maybe they'll let you put up some monkey wallpaper in cell block D! You can't beat me by yourself this time!'

Monkey Fist looked coldly at her. 'Perhaps you're right.' he said. Then he raised one hand and snapped his fingers, though the sound was more like two heavy stones grating and clunking against each other.

From around the rock where Monkey Fist was standing, on either side, several people stumped heavily forward until there was a group of about twenty standing between Kim and Monkey Fist. Kim and Wade stared in amazement. There were several men and women. All were dressed simply and all seemed to be forty years or older. There was even one that looked like a grandmother with a wooden cane.

But they were all made of stone. Their features were gray and rough, their eyes vacant and blank, their expressions flat and emotionless. Behind them, Monkey Fist was speaking, his voice still labored but full of triumphant amusement.

'What do you think of my new army?' he said, struggling to his feet. 'True, they're not monkey ninjas. In fact, they're quite rough around the edges. But I guarantee - they will rock you!' Then looking down at the statues, he raised his voice. 'Destroy Kim Possible!'

And they all charged forwards. Wade hastily drew back as the statues dogpiled on top of Kim, grappling and punching. But there was another flash of light and they were all hurled backwards as Kim's shield expanded. The statues rose and charged again, beating the shield with their fists, kicking and pushing.

Kim dropped the shield and in a blur of graceful motions, she dodged, weaved and twirled through their midst. The attackers smashed into each other, or were sent sliding as their own strikes missed. But again, they rose and attacked.

Monkey Fist was watching from his perch like an emperor spectating in a gladiatorial arena. Kim had blocked one statue's attack and was about to strike, her fist glowing blue. 'You asked what I've done with the residents of this town,' he said loudly. 'Before you do anything that might damage my army, you should know, they stand before you!'

Kim flinched, looking closer at the faces of her attackers. Among them, she could see now the same face in the photo she had studied on the flight over. The man they were searching for was attacking her with the others, but as a silent statue. She raised her shield just in time as a heavy blow struck from the side and sent her sprawling. She flipped and rose up again. The statues were slowly advancing, and Monkey Fist was still crowing triumphantly. 'They're unaware of pain of fear - you can't defeat them, Kim Possible! And even if you could, are you truly willing to destroy innocent lives just to get to me?'

Kim wasn't yet exerting herself heavily. The statues were strong, but slow, and none of them seemed to have any fighting skills. She was easily able to stay ahead of their blows, though it was just as well, as their punches and kicks were leaving small craters in the ground where they struck.

Still, they were relentless, and she was outnumbered. She herself didn't dare strike too hard. If the statues were really the former residents of Graniton, she didn't want to find out what shattering or breaking one of them might do. But they seemed as invulnerable as Monkey Fist had been in his manor, and nothing she did left so much as a scratch on any of them.

As she made another leap to evade four of them, she found herself clotheslined by the grandmother statue's wooden cane. She landed roughly, but rolled, thinking as she righted herself that she should be embarrassed that the granny had been the one to score a hit.

She glanced towards the boulder where Monkey Fist was overseeing the battle. He hadn't moved from his perch, and the scene rolled past her vision like shaky-cam footage as she continued fending off the statues. But she also caught a glimpse from the side of the boulder. A cloaked figure had stepped out and was also watching the fight. He had a mane of dark hair and two eagle feathers tied behind his left ear, and a pointed staff was in his hand. Kim felt a sudden surge of excitement. Maze was here.

At once, she felt as if the entire sitch had changed and the advantage was suddenly hers. She made a mental note to thank Wade for persuading her to going on this mission. Instead of agonizing at home and wondering where Ron was, she was now confronting the only two persons on Earth who had the answers. Luck had served her, and the plan she had contrived to set everything right again could be tried at once.

She waited until the statues had nearly surrounded her again, screening her from Maze's sight. Then just as they charged at her, Kim activated her booster soles and leaped high into the air. In a smooth arc, she sailed over Monkey Fist and straight down towards Maze. She saw the shadow shaman staring up at her in shock for one brief second before she landed a solid kick that sent him flying backwards. Maze slammed with a satisfying thud into one of the boulders behind him and collapsed to the ground. His staff fell out of his hand and clattered to the stony ground.

Kim turned to face Monkey Fist, hearing his scream behind her. He was raising his arms, his mouth opening, but his movements were slowing. And then he stood frozen in place, his cry of rage fading to silence. Behind Monkey Fist, the statues all stopped moving, like a scene in a movie that was suddenly put on pause. Kim stood up fully with a heaving sigh of relief. 'It worked...' she gasped.

Wade, who had remained well out of range of the fighting, stepped cautiously forward. He had a scanner in one hand, and what looked like two other devices in his other hand, and trying fiddle with all of them at once.

She walked up to the statue of Monkey Fist, looking back towards Maze. 'It didn't pan out exactly the way we thought.' she said. 'Defeating the one who released the Yono worked in stopping Monkey Fist, but Maze hasn't turned to stone.'

'So Maze's not walking the Yono's path?' said Wade cautiously.

'Guess not.' said Kim. 'But at least we've got them both now.'

Wade kept checking his instruments, glancing up as Kim waved a hand in front of Monkey Fist's eyes, then looked back again towards Maze. He was about to go over the scanner again when he saw Monkey Fist's face change from an angry looking shout into a malicious smile....

Kim heard Wade's voice suddenly tear out through the air. 'Kim, look out!'

She gasped, her shield rose again, and Monkey Fist's attack was blocked with a flash of blue light. He smiled and gestured forward. The statues of the townspeople surged back into action, surrounding Kim inside the shield. They pushed and pounded, heedless of the sparks and flashes that burst around them as they fought to override the energy barrier that kept them away from Kim.

'You seem to have done your homework.' said Monkey Fist, raising his voice over the din. 'You're to be commended. But I was not released from the Yono's curse! I was brought back through different means, and as such I am not bound by the same rules that enabled the Han to defeat the Yono. You won't be able to stop me simply by attacking my ally!'

Kim gritted her teeth as she saw the shield's light growing dimmer under the relentless onslaught. Monkey Fist had stepped back and was watching from a short distance. 'It's only a matter of time, my dear!' he laughed. 'Once your flimsy barrier has been broken, I'll finish what I started at the manor!'

'Not so fast, Monkey Fist!' Wade was shouting from off to the side, and Monkey Fist turned to face him.

'And who do we have here?' he said, sneering. 'If you're standing in for the buffoon, you picked the losing side!'

Kim was still fighting to keep the shield raised, fending off the attacks of the gang of statues. 'Wade - get out of here!' she shouted.

'No worries, Kim!' Wade said, a confident smile on his face. 'You're not the only one who's been getting some surprises ready! I've been working on this since we left Middleton and it's ready - the Short Range Universal Signal Negator!' he held up one of the devices he had been working on.

Monkey Fist raised an eyebrow. 'The SRUSN?' he said, a mocking tone in his voice. 'As intelligent as you seem to be, couldn't you have come up with a better acronym?'

Wade was moving closer. 'How about the D-FEAT-U?' he said. 'Once I hit this button, every electronic signal within ten yards will be totally jammed - including the one you're using to control these robots!'

Monkey Fist threw back his head and laughed. 'I take it back!' he said, fighting to speak through his mirth. 'You're even dumber than the buffoon was!'

'I mean it!' said Wade, now glaring. 'Stand down or I'll put you down!'

Monkey Fist folded his arms. 'Do your worst!' he said.

Wade pressed his thumb down with a loud click. The device in his hand hummed and a soft light seemed to surround an area around him in a radius of several yards, which encompassed Monkey Fist, Kim and the statues of the townsfolk. Kim gasped as the power in her suit seemed to shut down. The shield collapsed and the statues all fell forward on their faces. But Monkey Fist remained standing, staring at Wade. Wade shook the SRUSN, looking at Monkey Fist in confusion.

'Well...' said Monkey Fist shook his head 'That was just sad.'

The statues of the townspeople were getting up. Kim leaped and rolled over them, landing outside the circle and next to Wade. 'Wade, it's not working, turn it off!' Kim shouted. 'You're only blocking the suit!'

Wade fumbled nervously with the SRUSN and the light around him faded. Just in time, the shield re-activated and the oncoming statues were halted again. But the shield was now dim and flickering. 'Hold on!' he shouted to Kim. 'There's one more thing I can try...'

And he held up the other device, a strange box with what looked like a sturdy metal tuning fork jutting out of it. 'If the robots are actually made of stone, this will stop them! The Ultrasonic Emitter automatically scans any nearby solid object! Then it sends out vibrations that resonate with their natural frequency and shatter them!'

'What do you use that for?' Kim shouted, the blows from the statues now pushing through small gaps in the shield.

'I made it to break out of detention one day - long story - tell you later!' And he turned on the device, which began shaking in his hand, the tuning fork became a hazy blur.

'Wade don't, they're innocent people!'

'They're just robots disguised as statues and they're trying to flatten us...!' He held out the device.

But the surrounding statues kept attacking. The device whined and squealed in Wade's hand, but it didn't seem to be affecting the townspeople or Monkey Fist in the slightest. Kim saw the stone on the ground beneath them cracking and fragmenting in places, but there was no visible effect on the statues.

Behind the attackers, Monkey Fist was laughing. 'The stuff you young people call music these days....'

'Wade hold on to me!' Kim felt the shield wall breaking. The statues around them were pushing through, their arms raised to seize them. Kim put her arms around Wade and activated her booster soles. With Wade's additional weight, she didn't reach nearly as high as she had before, but it was enough to break out of the surrounding ring.

 

Wade's face was getting more pale as they landed. He was still working dials on the Ultrasonic Emitter, which buzzed louder and louder until it burst apart in his hand and fell silent. And the statues were still charging at them, their heavy footsteps making the ground tremble.

Kim considered her options. Her plan had been a bust. Defeating Maze hadn't stopped Monkey Fist. Nothing Wade had tried was having any effect. Her suit's power was almost exhausted. She couldn’t keep fighting and still protect Wade, who was looking like he was almost in shock. Whatever had been done to the Graniton residents, Kim couldn't stop them alone. She gripped Wade's hand and began running back towards the town, pulling him after her. 'Come on!' she shouted.

'After them!' Monkey Fist shouted, though he did not pursue Kim himself. He simply stood atop the boulder, watching with satisfaction as Kim and Wade ran back towards the distant town and disappeared behind the line of buildings.

The statues were still only halfway towards the town when he saw a car speeding down the road that led towards the distant highway. He called the statues back and they turned and began shambling slowly towards him. He smirked as the car vanished into the distance, then looked down, hearing a groan. He jumped down and landed next to Maze, who was fighting to his knees. Monkey Fist closed a hand around his wrist and raised him to his feet.

'Mi'kksiistsikomma.... she attacked me.' he said, shaking his head. 'Where is she? What has happened?'

Monkey Fist was staring out towards the line of dispersing dust on the road where the Sloth had sped away. 'A great victory!' he said, and the elation was visible even on his stony face. 'Hopefully only the first of many! Come - let us return to the lair with our new servants! It won't be long before Kim Possible returns, most likely with those meddlers from Global Justice. Can you mask all of us with your shadows?'

Maze stood for a moment, catching his breath. 'I think so.' he said, and he bent down to pick up his staff. He bent his head and closed his eyes, chanting softly as the statues of the townspeople gathered around them. Darkness stretched out from the surrounding stones, rising and swirling around them until they were obscured from sight. When the shadows lifted, they were gone.

- + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - + - +

The plane ride back and the drive in the Sloth to Kim's house was intensely silent. It was some time later. They had called in Global Justice, and Kim had been annoyed when none other than Will Du showed up in a hovercraft with several agents and a healthy dose of his usual skepticism. He seemed almost smug when they searched the area and found nothing. While he agreed that it was unusual for everyone to have disappeared, he casually dismissed Kim's explanation of moving statues, Monkey Fist and the like, despite Wade's support.

They agreed to continue the search, but Will condescendingly thanked Kim for her help and told her to 'leave things to the professionals', then arranged for another cargo plane to give them a ride back to the states. Neither Kim nor Wade said anything until they were back in her house. Kim had put on a spare set of clothes during the plane flight, covering the drained battle suit.

They sat down at the kitchen table. Mr. Dr. Possible was in the breakfast nook reading a paper and drinking a cup of coffee. 'So, how'd the mission go, Kimmy Cu....' he paused, looking at their haggard and grim faces. Several seconds passed in silence. Looking suddenly uncomfortable, he took a firm grip on the paper and the cup, then quickly stood up. 'Whoa, I think the phone's ringing in my den! Pardon me while I... contact mission control!' Then he practically darted out of the kitchen.

Still, neither of them spoke. At last Kim raised her voice. 'Wade - what happened back there?'

Wade looked pale and confused. 'The jammer didn't work...' he said, then he kept saying it over and over again as if he refused to believe it. 'But... there's no signal on Earth strong enough to counter this jammer at close range. It should have worked. There's no scientific explanation for it...'

Kim snapped her fingers next to Wade's ear. 'Forget science for a minute!' she said. 'Wade, they weren't robots, they were animated statues! We went looking for the residents of Graniton and we found them! Monkey Fist used the Yono's power to turn them to stone!'

'But that's not possible!' he said. 'Petrification is a process that takes hundreds, thousands of years....'

'I saw Slate.' Kim said. 'He was one of the statues, I recognized him from the photo. But he was moving - that's something I haven't seen from the Yono's victims before. How did they do it?'

Wade dithered for a second, looking at his scanner, the only piece of equipment he had that hadn't been smashed. 'I... I don't know.' he said at last. 'According to the scanner, there were no circuits, no components, no servos... nothing but solid rock! But that's impossible... solid rock isn't flexible - it crumbles or cracks, it doesn't move like what I saw back there.... And the sonic emitter? The vibrations were specifically keyed to resonate with stone. It should have worked!'

Kim was getting worried. Wade was always professional, smart as a whip and calculated. But now he was simply sitting and looking at his crumpled equipment. 'Don't wig out on me now, Wade!' Kim said, 'Go over what you saw! You're a scientist - what does the evidence tell you?'

'Kim...' he said, and there was a look of helplessness on his face that she had never seen before. '...I got nothin!'

Kim shook her head. 'First off...' she said, putting both hands on his shoulders, '...Ron would say that was his line. And second, he'd say its loser talk!'

Wade was shaking his head. 'Well, it's kind of hard to come up with winner talk when everything you know has just been turned on its head!'

'Then maybe it's time you rethought your approach.'

Both Kim and Wade's heads snapped up to look towards the sliding glass door that led into the kitchen. Kim's hands balled into fists and she stood up, going into a ready stance while Wade's eyes flew wide. The door had been opened without them hearing or noticing while they talked. Standing in the doorway, the daylight lining him with a pale halo, was a teenage boy with a head of spiked auburn hair. His face was scowling and grave. Kim stared furiously into the hazel eyes of Grimm Probable.

'Hey Kim.' Grimm said, and his expression did not change. 'Did you get my letter?'

Coming Soon:
Chapter 11

Blind Eyes and a Long Arm


Author: The time has come at last - Kim Possible and Grimm Probable face off again in the next chapter! In terms of the main plot, the details of the encounter itself are a bit flexible. So a question to the fans/readers of the story: What would you like to see happen? How do you think the next Kim/Grimm encounter will shake out? There are several delicious possibilities, among them... 1) Kim beats the tar out of Grimm. 2) Grimm defeats Kim. 3) They team up without incident. 4) Grimm head-games or otherwise browbeats Kim into compliance. 5) Kim has Grimm arrested. Or.... you can make your own suggestion. In addition to guessing the next riddle (come on, this one's easy), you can tell me how you imagine this encounter will go and even suggest a line or two. It may get in....

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