Volume 5 - Bubbles Utonium
"What a day!" A young blonde girl exclaimed as she hopped off the bus, pausing and holding her hand out to the little boy trailing after her. He quickly slipped his little hand into hers, swinging it to and fro as the pair walked toward their house. She paused to push her thick-rimmed glasses back up, the afternoon sun glinting off the frames to make her baby blue eyes sparkle even more than normal, "How was school, Sammy?" she asked, giving his hand a squeeze.
The little boy shrugged, giggling when she ruffled his messy dark hair, "It was okay, we played tag today and I was it most of the time," he sighed, "Everyone's just so fast! I wanna be fast too! Fast like you, Bubbles!" he exclaimed.
His sister, Bubbles, just giggled, gently reminding him to take his shoes off before he went charging toward the living room. "Just keep running and you'll be super fast someday! Even faster than me!" she proclaimed, flexing her arms and grinning. Sammy just rolled his eyes, plopping down on the sofa and turning on the television.
"Yeah, right!" he shot back, his despair giving way to joy as the theme song to his favorite show began to blare across the room. Bubbles just rolled her eyes, strolling to the door across from the living room. She gave it a few gentle raps, then cleared her throat.
"Daddy? You still down there?" She called. There was a rumble, and then the whole house shook. Bubbles giggled, ignoring her father's extremely G-rated cursing echoing alongside the footsteps heading for the door. It popped open, revealing her father, the famed Professor Utonium, covered in soot, with a strange purple liquid leaking down his face.
He gave her a wry grin, placing his hands on his hips. Bubbles just grinned in return.
"Oops, my bad?" she teased. He just chuckled.
"No, no, it was my 'bad'. I should have known the salicylic acid wouldn't accept the hydroxyl ions…" he muttered, stroking his chin and sighing. "Oh well, back to the drawing board,"
"Hey there, Sammy! Good day at school?"
"Yeah I guess so,"
The Professor turned to his oldest child, raising his eyebrow. Bubbles just shrugged and smiled.
"He had a rough game of tag, it was serious business," she explained. The Professor nodded, mouthing an "ah" before turning to head back into his lab.
"Well, you two stay out of trouble. Mom has a meeting after class, so she won't be home until later. I'll start dinner in about an hour," he called back.
"Oh, wait! Daddy, did you get that thing fixed for me? You know...the thing? The special thing you were fixing for me? The thing I need to do that other thing you don't really want me to do, but I really, really like doing so you and Mommy said I could keep doing it as long as you fixed that thing?" Bubbles rambled, still talking even when her father chuckled.
"Your shoes are in your closet. I got the soles fixed, try to remember what we discussed. No sudden stops, use little bounces to reduce your momentum," he replied. Bubbles cheered and pumped her fists.
"Thanks, Daddy!" she cried. The Professor just smiled and shut the door to his lab, returning to his latest experiment. Bubbles hummed to herself, practically skipping to the living room and plopping down next to her brother. No sooner had she sat down, she hopped back up and made her way to the kitchen.
"Sam, you wanna cookie?" she called, rifling through the pantry. She narrowed her eyes and pursed her lips in annoyance, spotting the pack of her favorite sweets stashed on the top shelf. She bent her legs slightly and hopped up, her head nearly touching the ceiling as she snatched her prize. With a victorious little smirk, she landed on one foot, hopped a little lower, and then the other, with a final little bounce.
"See? Little bounces. I have this totally under control," she whispered to herself with a delighted nod. Licking her lips, she took a gleeful bite out of the first cookie and returned to the living room, plopping down next to her brother again.
Sammy accepted the cookie in silence, completely enthralled by his show. Before too long, Bubbles herself had become entranced. Part of her wanted to be embarrassed that she shared her brother's obsession for what was definitely a show marketed at children his age. The other part of her, the smart part, told that part to shush and mind its own business, thank you very much!
As the hero finally overcame the villain's plot for the week, the two broke out of their trances in unison, both cheering as the credits rolled. Sammy turned to Bubbles with a giant grin plastered on his face.
"That was the best one yet! Did you see the way he-"
Bubbles nodded, "I know, right? And how about when he-"
"Yeah! Yeah! Oh man, and that thing? The one with the...yeah!" The both sighed, falling back on the couch and bursting into laughter. Bubbles took that time to glance at the clock by the television. Their mom wouldn't be home for a while still. The responsible thing to do would be to get their homework over with.
Mommy was a teacher, after all.
"Oh! That's right!" Sammy exclaimed, interrupting Bubbles' train of thought, "You said you'd fix my car! C'mon, c'mon!" He grabbed her wrist and tugged with all his might. Unfortunately, his little second grade arms were powerless against his much stronger sibling.
"Did I? Oh yeah…" Bubbles teased, slipping to her feet. She started to head for the stairs, but Sammy stopped her, shaking his head.
"Mom and Dad aren't here! Take me upstairs the fun way!" He pleaded.
Bubbles scratched her head, glancing toward the door to their father's lab. She sighed, putting her hands on her hips, "Sammy...you know I'm not supposed to do that. What if I drop you? Or what if someone sees me?"
"Oh c'mon, Bubs! You've done it before! You never drop me!" he insisted, putting on his best pout. Bubbles cursed her weak heart; she also cursed her evil little brother for knowing how easily that look worked on her. Biting her lip, she leaned down and placed her finger to her lips, shushing him.
"Alright, but it's our secret, okay?" She winked and Sammy grinned, winking back. He was already laughing as Bubbles lifted him into her arms and carried him toward the couch. With a little "Woop!" she jumped on the couch, and then, with a little bit more bend to her knees, shot them both straight up into the air.
"Woohoo! Yeah!" Sammy cheered, trying to touch the ceiling. His fingers just grazed the top before they came back down, bouncing on the second floor landing. Bubbles squealed, mistiming her bounce and shooting them both higher than she meant to on the second jump. She quickly got control, taking a much more measured third bounce, and a gentle fourth bounce. Thankfully, by the fifth, she was able to stop without much more drama.
In contrast, Sammy thought her mistake was the coolest thing ever.
"That was great! Do it again!" he insisted, stars in his eyes, a grin glued to his face.
"Nope! Only one time! Sorry, ask again tomorrow!" Bubbles teased, setting him down. He groaned, crossing his arms and pouting. This time, she didn't let him get away with being a little rat. "Oh no you don't!" she exclaimed, giving his sides a quick tickle. Sammy squealed and squirmed away, giggling and rubbing his belly.
"That's not fair!"
"Neither is being a little stinker! Now, c'mon! Let's fix your car,"
Bubbles bit her tongue, carefully attaching the wire back to the circuit board. "Okay, screw driver?" she called over her shoulder. Sammy nodded, passing her the tool. He was sitting nearby, watching with so much intensity she could have sworn he was sweating. With a giggle, she tightened the last screw and began to reattach the casing along the outside of the racecar.
"Here we go...and one more...there!" Bubbles grinned, flipping the racecar over and handing Sammy the remote control, "Give 'er a test drive!"
The two sat with bated breath as Sammy started up the remote. He glanced at her and she nodded. Sammy nodded and accelerated the little car. His eyes lit up when it began to move!
"It works! You fixed it! Yes! Yes! Thanks, Bubs!" He cried, throwing his arms around her neck and hugging her tight. Bubbles gave him a quick kiss on the cheek and a little hug in return.
"You're very welcome! Try to be careful, though. This is the sixth time. If you keep this up, you might break it for real," she pointed out, sliding to her feet and brushing her pants off.
"I'm being careful! I just...didn't see the stairs…" he muttered, running the little car around the room at full speed. Bubbles just rolled her eyes and reminded him that dinner would be ready in a few more minutes.
Humming, she flipped over the second floor railing and dropped down onto the couch below. She gave a little "oof!" when she landed on the remote, but was proud of an otherwise safe fall. That is, until she heard someone clear her throat. Bubbles peeked up over the arm of the couch and laughed sheepishly.
"H-Hey, Mommy. How was work?"
Her mother, Cassandra Utonium, formerly Cassandra Keane, put her hands on her hips and shook her head. Her mother was a beloved kindergarten teacher at the nearby Pokey Oaks Kindergarten, where both Bubbles and Sammy had once been students. It wasn't the first time Bubbles had seen that look on her face, and she couldn't resist giggling nervously.
"It went very well, thank you. Bubbles, you know what we've discussed about imitatable acts, right?"
Bubbles sighed, "Yes, Mommy,"
"Just because you can jump off the second floor like that, doesn't mean you should. What if Sammy saw you and tried that?" Cassie asked, walking to the couch and gesturing toward Bubbles' feet. The teen lifted her legs, letting her mom sit down, then plopped them back down on her lap.
"I'd catch him?" Bubbles offered. Cassie just raised an eyebrow.
"And what if you aren't here?"
Bubbles sighed, "I know. I'm sorry, and I won't do it again. I was just excited about fixing his car...again," the two giggled and Cassie gave her a pat on the leg.
"It's okay, Sweetie, I forgive you. I know you're a wonderful sister and you'd hate to see him get hurt," Bubbles beamed and Cassie sighed, leaning back into the cushy couch, "So how was school?"
"Pretty good, we have class elections coming up soon, so I've got a couple of people asking me to design posters and stuff for them," Bubbles explained, going into a rambling explanation of who was running, what they were running for, what she thought of each of them, their favorite foods, colors, books, and, in some cases, the last time she'd been to a sleepover at their house. While she was more interested in hearing how Bubbles did on her history test, Cassie couldn't bring herself to interrupt her cheerful chatter.
Bubbles drummed her fingers on her stomach, staring up at her ceiling fan. She pursed her lips, cocking her head and closing her eyes. She could hear a dog barking down the street, and a cat mewing somewhere near the Robinson's house. Clenching her eyes and focusing harder, she tried to hear Townsville. Sirens, someone was breaking the law. There were guns shooting, lots of people running. There was a car going too fast, tires screeching. If she listened hard enough, maybe she'd hear her?
Townsville new heroine!
Bubbles grinned and sat up, kicking off her blankets. That did it! There were definitely bad things happening and even if Townsville finally had a real heroine, it couldn't hurt to give her a little help, right?
"And besides…" Bubbles whispered as she began to get changed. She pulled on a pair of black biking shorts and a pair of athletic socks. She stretched and pulled her hair back into a ponytail. She pulled her white hoodie on and dug around in her closet. Her dad had said her shoes were fixed, so where were they?
"Let's see...there!" She whispered, pulling on a pair of specially made running shoes. They had extra thick soles, and specially padded insoles, to help with her...special talent. Bubbles paused in front of the mirror and pulled her hood over her face. The big bunny ears fell in front of her face, causing her to grin.
She looked perfect!
"If I'm lucky, maybe I'll get to meet her? That would be so cool…" Bubbles muttered, jumping out her window. The moment her feet touch the ground, her grin only got bigger as she bent her knees and suddenly shot herself off, into the sky! She couldn't fly, not like some meta-humans, but she could hop!
"When trouble is near, I am not slow! For it's hop, hop, hop!" Each bounce sent her flying further and faster. She had to be careful to avoid leaving dents in the ground. That had been difficult to explain to the Smiths…. "And away...I...GO!" Harmony Bunny hit the ground and bent her knees all the way. With a loud "WOO!" she shot off in the direction of Townsville.
"There we go, Missus Mittens," Harmony Bunny cooed, petting the proud mama cat. The old cat mewed thankfully, nuzzling the pack of kittens crowded around the dish of milk the heroine had brought them. "Try to stay out of trouble, okay? I told Spike about your kitties, so he'll be by to look after you, okay?" Harmony Bunny explained. Somehow, the cat seemed to understand her, nuzzling her hand again. The blue-eyed heroine grinned, saying her goodbyes and hopping up and along the walls of the nearby buildings. She grunted trying to slow her stop by taking smaller jumps once she got to the roof.
"There...still getting the hang of it," Harmony Bunny assured herself, walking to the edge of the building. Ms. Mittens would be safe once Spike found her. He was a good dog, a tough old doberman with a heart of gold. Harmony Bunny sat down on the edge of the building sighing. She'd checked on seven cats, four dogs, three rats, and a opossum. They were happy now, at least, but...she closed her eyes and listened.
She could hear tires squealing, guns firing, and people shouting. They were pretty far away. There were too many of them for her to mess with, she was better off leaving that to the real heroine. A smile cracked on Harmony Bunny's lips. She could hear her chattering on a radio, giving orders to the cops to follow her in about five minutes.
"She's so cool…" Harmony Bunny whispered, resting her chin on her hands. She sat up straight, cocking her head when she heard something nearby. It was a fight, two women. She grinned, jumping to her feet. "Finally, my time to shine!" The fluffy hooded heroine jumped the gap between herself and the next building, hurrying toward the fight.
"Listen, we don't need to fight, Hon. Just give me the purse, and I'll be on my way, yeah?" The shorter woman insisted, pressing her switchblade closer to her victim's throat. The lady nodded, slipping the purse from her shoulder and holding it out.
"Take it! Just don't hurt me...I don't have a lot of money…" she whimpered. The thief snatched the purse and flipped it open, keeping her victim pinned to the wall. She pulled out a few bills and raised an eyebrow.
"Seriously? Man, I'm not walking away with just twenty bucks, not worth it. You've gotta have something that's worth more. Don't you have a phone?" She asked. The lady just shook her head.
"N-No, my old phone is broken, I haven't replaced it yet," she explained.
The thief sighed, biting her tongue and glaring at her. "Well, that pisses me off." She rammed the lady up against the wall, grinding her teeth, "I'll just beat your ass for wasting my time, Sweetch-" the two froze, hearing a loud crash nearby. The fluffy heroine stood up straight, adjusting her hood.
"That's enough, bad girl! Let her go!" Harmony Bunny called, thrusting her finger at her, like she'd seen the heroes on TV do so many times. She flinched and sighed when the thief started laughing.
"Are you serious? Kid, you can't be serious." She glanced at the lady, jerking her thumb toward Harmony Bunny, "A fat little rabbit. This is a joke, right?"
"I'm serious! I'm a real hero! If you don't let her go, I'll have to make you!" Harmony Bunny insisted. The thief shook her head, glaring at the lady.
"You try to run, I'm gonna chase you down and gut you, got it?" Tightening her grip on her knife, she strolled over to Harmony Bunny. The heroine narrowed her eyes and took a deep breath, slowly letting it out.
'You can do this Bubbles...it's your first fight, but it's just one person. She's normal and you're the Daring Harmony Bunny! You're really fast, you can hear super good, and you can jump good! Oh and you've got-' Harmony Bunny's train of thought ended abruptly when the thief roared and charged at her. She dodged the first swing, then the second, her eyes getting wider.
"Sit still, you little shit!" The thief took a wild swing at her, so Harmony Bunny jumped over her, lightly tapping her on the back with her feet. It was still enough force to send her smashing face first into the ground, while Harmony Bunny landed unharmed. Her hands shot to her mouth.
"Oh gosh, I'm sorry! I didn't mean to hit you so hard…"
The lady looked up in fear, "You didn't mean to? Aren't you trying to save me?"
"Well, yeah, but I don't want to hurt her, WAH!" Harmony Bunny screamed, dodging another angry charge. When she brought her hands up and brought the knife down toward her, Harmony Bunny ducked to the side and jumped, ricocheting off the building, she landed nearby, panting.
'Okay, fighting is a lot harder than it looks. I'll just use the stickers.' This time, when the thief came in at her, Harmony Bunny dropped to her knees, ducking under the swing. She pulled a sticker from the little bag she wore on her hip and lifted the thief's shirt up.
"H-Hey! What the-"
"Boop!" Harmony Bunny chirped, pressing the sticker against her belly. Almost instantly, the thief dropped to the ground, giggling and squealing, a giant grin on her face. Harmony Bunny giggled, climbing to her feet. She picked up the lady's purse and brought it back to her.
"Here you go," she glanced back at the still giggling thief and laughed, "Looks like someone was a little ticklish. It's okay, that'll wear off in a bit and she'll feel better,"
The lady stared at her, incredulously. She tugged at one of Harmony Bunny's ears, "You...are seriously...a hero?"
"Well a heroine, but yes! Well...um not officially, but...oh no!" Harmony Bunny heard sirens approaching and screamed, "Oh no, I can't be here when they get here."
"Wait...you're...you're not registered?" The lady asked, her fears confirmed. "So you're...a vigilante?"
"No! I mean, not exactly. It's complicated, just don't tell anyone I was here, okay? Thanks, have a safe night!" With that, Harmony Bunny shot off into the air, bouncing between the buildings until she got to the rooftops. Then, she took off bounding across the city, making her way back toward Pokey Oaks.
"You know…" she mumbled as she hurried home. She closed her eyes and listened. The thief was still laughing and she could hear the lady talking to her husband, telling him she was safe. "I'm not too bad at this!" she exclaimed, disappearing into the sleepy suburb.