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Song lyrics: “Without You”, The Amazing World of Gumball

Susie sat down in front of the table, her magnum opus laying before her. She was exhausted, to say the least. This had taken her months, almost half a year; and to think, she had somehow kept it a secret for that long. Her mental state was… well, not the best. She had been a total insomniac since the past 3-and-a-half months, working on her project non-stop. Susie's sleep schedule wasn't very good either, sleeping on and off at random most of the time. She knew it wasn't the best decision in the world, but she knew she had to if she were to get her invention done in a timely manner.

Susie stared down at her invention, admiring it. Five-and-a-half long months of hard work, and it all was about to pay off in just a couple of hours. She wasn't going to activate it right away, she wanted its first few seconds of life to be viewing a fresh face. And, needless to say, she wasn't fresh; not by a long shot. Susie sighed. Oh well, what's a few - EXCRUCIATINGLY LONG!! - hours to someone with her level of patience? She looked up to the ceiling of the large laboratory, and started to think back, way back, to when she first had the idea to make what now was her greatest accomplishment.

~~~~

Susie was going to Marx's house, intrigued at what Marx had said to her before she went. Marx had a new friend, a “bright and eccentric young man” as he had called him. When Susie had arrived and walked through the door, she was awestruck.

“Your smile answers my silent scream,
Your photo on the screen…”

Sitting on the couch, just a couple of feet away, was a strange creature, unlike anything Susie had seen on Pop-Star. He was a little over 6 feet tall, being twice Marx's height, and had a thin build. His face was covered in scars and had strange dark markings on it, specifically on his lips and eyes, giving him a forlorn look. His hair was extremely messy and was slightly parted to the side. He was dressed in a black jumpsuit tightly covered in belts and metal trinkets. But the thing that stood out the most, and the thing that intrigued Susie the most, was the fact that the man literally had large, foot-long metal blades in place of fingers, and his thumbs were replaced with what looked like metal clips. He was… beautiful.

“My eyes well up, I vent my spleen,
Your photo on the screen…”

Susie stared at him for a couple of seconds before being forced out of her trance by Marx.

“Edward, this is Susie. She'll be staying with us for the day.” So, his name was Edward. Susie didn't know why, but it was actually a very fitting name. “Edward, say ‘hi’.”

“Hi, Susie…” Edward said in a very shy manner. He slowly waved his metal hands at her.

“Greetings, Edward,” Susie said, blushing a little bit.

“Well, now that that's been settled, who wants lunch?” Marx asked.

“Oh, can we have Ambrosia Salad?” Edward asked, very light excitement shone in his voice. All three headed to the kitchen.

“Edward, you've been eating it for lunch for the past 6 Days!” Marx laughed playfully.

“I know, I love it that much.” Edward smiled.

Susie only stared at Edward. The way he smiled, the somewhat shaky way he moved, his messy jet-black hair, his childlike innocence, was all beautiful to her. She wouldn't necessarily say she was in love, just fascinated… fascinated by this extraordinary man.

“Your chair a throne, you're like a queen,
My heart is drenched in gasoline,”

They all ate Ambrosia Salad, as per Edward's request. Susie had never ate it before, but it was actually really good. While eating, Susie caught little glimpses of Edward every now and then, just to study him a little. After lunch, Marx started to clean up.

“You Know, Susie, I think you and Edward should get to know each other better. You two would really get along,” Marx said while casually washing his plate.

Edward and Susie looked at each other.

“That sounds nice,” Susie said, walking back into the living room. “Come on Edward.”

“You look at me, yet I'm unseen,
Your photo on the screen…”

They both sat on the couch, eager to talk.

“So, Edward, I wanted to start off with you. I hope this isn't too personal if a question, but… how did your hands end up like this?” Susie asked, looking at Edward's hands.

“...I can't remember a lot of it since I was really young, but I remember being made in factory.”

Susie's interest instantly skyrocketed, “Wow… What about when you were starting to get older?”

The look on Edward's face instantly turned from curiosity to sadness, “I don't think you wanna hear it…”

Susie insisted, “Please, Edward?”

Edward sighed heavily, “Fine, but just this one time, okay?”

Susie nodded, and Edward told her everything. When his father died before Edward could be finished, when Peg brought him into her house, when he started to become popular around the neighborhood, when he started to fall for Peg's daughter, Kim, and vice versa, when Kim's boyfriend and his group of friends made Edward rob a house against his will just for some grant money, when he was forced back into his castle home by the neighborhood, who had turned on him, and when he and Kim were forcibly separated.

“Without you,
I can't breathe,”

By the time Edward was done, Susie was shocked, and frankly heartbroken. She couldn't believe what she had heard. Here was this eccentric, amazing man, given a chance at a normal life, and it was crushed. Crushed into tiny, little bite-sized pieces. She stared at Edward for what felt like an eternity - which, in reality, was only about 30 seconds.

“Uh… Susie? Are you okay?” Edward asked. Susie only hugged Edward tightly.

“Edward… I am so, so sorry all that stuff happened to you… look, no matter what happens or anybody else says… you'll always be a special, bright and eccentric young man… and don't let anyone else tell you otherwise…”

“Uh… Marx?” Edward asked, worried about Susie.

“Don't worry, Edward. I did the exact same thing with you, remember?” Marx reassured.

Edward only looked at Susie and blushed a little bit, “Oh, yeah.”

After a couple of seconds, Susie let go of Edward. She did it with great reluctance though; after what she had just heard, she wanted to hold him for hours. Edward didn't deserve to go through what he went through. No one did. He was just an innocent, wonderful man who got conned out of having a good life just because he was different.

“Without you,
I can't breathe,”

When Susie left a couple of hours later, she began to contemplate. Edward said he was made in a lab. And if that's true, being as advanced, pure and organic as he was, that means that VERY advanced technology was used to make him. The most advanced technologies on Pop-Star at the time, not counting things relating to magic positive energy, were somewhat clunky robots. If Susie could piece together something as sophisticated as Edward, it would be a technological breakthrough! The face of robotic technology on Pop-Star would be changed greatly, and for the better.

All of this ran through Susie's mind as she walked home. One thing was for certain, though: she would start her big project the minute she got home to her laboratory. And she would do it with patience and pride.

~~~~

And here she was now, five-and-a-half months later, that same big project right in front of her, just one step away from completion. But right now, Susie needed some well-deserved shut eye. She stumbled to her bed, almost falling on her face a couple of times. When she finally reached it, she collapsed on it, falling asleep the very second she hit the bed.

Chapter Text

Song lyrics: “Mr. Mister Gummibär,” Gummibär

Susie slowly opened her eyes and groaned. She looked at the clock by her nightstand and blinked in disbelief. 11:35, the clock read. How long did she stay up last night?! She never woke up like this! Or… not until recently. She sighed dejectedly and slowly got up from the bed. She didn't have a lot of energy, something she'd been used to for the past couple months. She looked across the room and rubbed her eyes. She honestly didn't want to get up; she wanted to sleep some more. Who knows? She might get her sleep schedule back on track. Oh well, not like a cup of coffee can't fix.

“C'mon, let's get started,
C'mon, let's get started,”

However, the very second she walked out of the room, something clicked. She just finished one of her life goals last night! She almost screamed with delight, regaining almost all of her energy in an instant. She rushed to the bathroom to straighten herself up, and after that rushed to the main laboratory. She gasped upon entering the large room and seeing the table in the very center of it.

“C'mon, let's get started,
C'mon, let's get started!”

Susie slowly walked over to the table, where the object - or person, rather - of interest lay. She placed her hand on his chest. “In just a couple of minutes,” she said quietly, “you'll be alive, and you'll learn about all the best things that life on Pop-Star has to offer.” She ran her hands through his jet-black hair, being careful not to detach the wired nodes attached to his head. The wires ran for a short distance before their connection to a large computer on the wall opposite of the table. Just a simple press of a key, and her magnum opus would be brought to life.

Susie stared at the large monitor, her hands shaking slightly. Specifically, she was staring at a single line of code at the very bottom of the screen. Her hand very slowly reached the massive keyboard, but right before she pressed “enter”, she stopped herself.

“You need a name,” Susie uttered. She had completely forgotten about a name. She turned around to face her soon-to-be-named child. She obviously couldn't name him “Edward”, it would cause major confusion between her version of Edward and the actual Edward. “How about… Wilbur?” Susie thought about it, and it was actually a very efficient name. So, with that settled, she pressed “enter”, allowing the selected line of code to be accepted and put into effect.

“Gummi up, Google in, check for green bear,
No matter what you'll find,
I'm gonna be there!”

Wilbur very slowly opened his eyes, allowing Susie view his large, black pupils. A octahedral crystal, which was fixated on the end of a flexible metal rod protruding his forehead, began to glow an eerie shade of crimson. Once his eyes were fully opened, he stared at Susie.

“I can't miss, Mr. Mister Gummibär
Popping up, check it out,
C'mon, let's get started!”

“Hi, Wilbur… I'm Susie,” Susie said rather shyly. Wilbur very slowly rose into a sitting position. His vacant, doll-like eyes were still fixated on Susie. Susie herself had to fight back tears; half a year's worth of hard, diligent work, and it was now finally paying off. It was like a mother - Susie - and her newborn baby - Wilbur. Susie couldn't wait to hear him say his first words, so she spoke again.

“Wilbur… can you say my name? Susie”, she instructed, saying her name slowly. Wilbur stayed quiet for a couple of seconds before he cocked his head to the side. He spoke in a strange, breathy and almost creepy manner.

“S… sw… Sweet Tarts?” Wilbur moaned.

“Your turn, tweet me now, people everywhere!
We're getting ready, lift off to the stratosphere!”

Susie couldn't help but chuckle at his response. Close enough, and it was a kind of cute nickname. She ran her hands through his curly jet-black hair. Wilbur closed his eyes and smiled. Susie started to speak again.

“How about I show you your room, Wilbur?” Susie suggested. Wilbur nodded, getting up from the table. Susie turned around to go to Wilbur's room, but immediately stopped herself when she noticed something off about Wilbur. Very off. She turned around to face him and looked at his hands.

Wilbur had Watermelon for hands. Literal doggone watermelons in place of where his hands should be. Susie just stood there staring at his hands, completely and utterly dumbfounded. Had her insomnia really gotten so bad to the point where she gave faulty hands of watermelons? Apparently, yes… but in all seriousness, it wasn't too big of a problem, and it could be easily solved by just building him a new pair of actual hands. The process would only take a couple of days.

“No way I'd ever leave without you!
Join the trip, rocket-ship,
We'll have a party, let's go!”

“Sweet Tarts…?” Wilbur breathed softly, knocking Susie out of her trance. Wilbur had a look of unease on his face, obviously caused by Susie's sudden zoning episode.

“Oh… d-don't worry about it, Wilbur. I just got distracted. Now, let's get you to your room, you'll love it.”

Wilbur was put at ease, and Susie walked him to his room. Wilbur gasped quietly upon seeing it. His room was designed like a small child's bedroom. The floor was covered in red carpet and had colorful polka dots on it. There was a play table in one corner, with a blue toy bin next to it, and a large bed in the opposite corner. A wall-mounted flat screen TV hung on the adjacent wall where the table was. A wide dresser was next to the bed, a couple of toys lying on top of the dresser.

“Let's rock this party, wicked on the internet!
Dance with the green bear up until it's time for bed!”

Wilbur smiled and lightly bonked Susie on the head as a way to show his gratitude. Susie giggled and placed her hand on his shoulder. “I'm glad you like it,” she said softly. Wilbur then directed his attention to the toy bin, and the object that was at the very top of it: a red ball. He sauntered over to it and carefully picked up the ball, holding it between his large hands. He held it for a couple of seconds before lightly throwing it upward, accidentally letting go of it in the process. He watched curiously as the ball bounced around for a couple of seconds before coming to rest at the other side of the room. Susie went over to where the ball had stopped, picked it up and handed it to Wilbur.

“They call me chubby, but I'm no jelly bean!
They call me crazy, hey, everybody SCREAM!”

The following couple of hours were spent with Susie and Wilbur entertaining each other by playing with Wilbur's toys. However, due to Wilbur's hands, the activities were limited. But they still had fun nevertheless. They threw plastic rings in the air and tried to catch them with their heads, they chased each other with toy vacuum cleaners, they tried to guide Wilbur's ball into a goal by kicking it, and they built forts made of building blocks and fought each other with foam swords.

“Just call me Gummibär, don't call me Winnie Pooh,
They say I'm hazy, goofy, crazy, but I'm really cool!”

By the time they decided to call it quits, both Susie and Wilbur were exhausted, all the activities from earlier having worn them out. They tiredly put all of Wilbur's toys back into the toy bin and sat back on the ground. Susie rested her head on Wilbur's shoulder, and in response, Wilbur rested his head on Susie's.

“I can dance, and move my feet, to the beat to the beat!
Call me Funny Bear, but really I'm a gummy bear.”

“I think it's time for bed,” Susie groaned. Wilbur yawned loudly in response. They both helped each other up, and Susie walked Wilbur to his bed. Wilbur flopped down on the bed, and Susie tucked him in and under the covers. “Goodnight, Wilbur,” Susie said groggily, even though Wilbur was already asleep. Like mother, like son, apparently.

“Boom boom, we rocket, boom, Mister Gummibär!
Boom boom, we rocket, boom, Mister funny bear!
Boom boom, we rocket, boom, Mister green bear!
Rocket rocket, rocket rocket, rocket like this!”

Susie slowly walked back to her bedroom. While she was tired, she was excited about what tomorrow would bring. She had greatly enjoyed her first day with Wilbur, and she wanted to get up early to see him, and get started on Wilbur's new hands.

“C'mon, let's get started!
C'mon, let's get started,
C'mon, let's get started.”

But right now, Susie needed to rest. Besides, she'd need all the energy she could possibly have, because she knew that the next day would have lots to offer.

Chapter Text

Song lyrics: “Hairy Lady”, The Amazing World of Gumball

    Susie yawned and stretched and she got out of bed. It was 7:30 in the morning, which was a huge improvement where her sleep schedule was concerned.

    “Here’s to hoping,” Susie mumbled, hoping she’d be able to keep this up and get back to her regular sleep schedule. Her first agenda of the day was getting started on Wilbur’s new hands. She’d let wilbur sleep for another hour and a half since it was a little early, that and Susie kinda wanted to spoil him a little bit. She wandered into the main laboratory, where she started gathering her materials. She hummed quietly to herself, a habit she had picked up when she first began working on Wilbur.

    Creating the skeleton, nerves and skin of the hands was the easy part. Heck, she'd probably get those parts of Wilbur's hands done by the end of the day. It was coding the hands so that they'd work properly that was the more lengthy, and sometimes agitating, part. Plus, Susie had to make sure the hands were properly coded and coordinated, which meant her utmost attention to what she was doing. But that would only be after she got the base of his hands done.

    A little less than 2 hours later and the skeletons for both hands were done. Susie sighed upon their completion. Man, time flies. However, Susie suddenly remembered something important: she was supposed to wake Wilbur up over half an hour go! She quickly jumped out of her chair and rushed to Wilbur's bedroom door. Upon reaching it, she stopped herself and gently knocked on the door.

    “Wilbur, you awake?” Susie asked. Only a second later, she could hear light shuffling coming from the other side of the door. When it stopped, Wilbur spoke to Susie.

    “Uh… Sweet Tarts… c-could you open the door… please…?”

    Susie did what Wilbur asked and opened the door for him. Upon opening the door and seeing Wilbur, Susie smiled, and Wilbur returned the gesture by smiling as well.

    “Good morning, Wilbur,” Susie said softly.

    “Hi…” Wilbur moaned.

    The looked at each other for a few seconds before Susie turned around and gestured Wilbur to follow her, “Let's get you some breakfast.”

    Wilbur followed close behind Susie as she headed to a large fridge on the opposite side of the laboratory. She got out a small packet of waffles, got two waffles out of the packet and then put the rest back. She walked over to a toaster and put the two waffles in. Wilbur watched on in curiosity as Susie grabbed a glass from one of the cupboards and poured some milk into it. After this and the waffles were done, Susie added on some butter and syrup to the waffles, and both she and Wilbur walked to a table where breakfast would commence.

    Susie helped Wilbur eat his waffles since he couldn't use forks or spoons. Hell, he had Watermelons for hands; he couldn't do a lot of things, but Susie was more than happy to help. He had the cutest smile on his face when tasted his first waffle, and he kept it on his face the entire time he was eating breakfast. Susie couldn't help but give out a happy sigh. Five-and-a-half months of hard work finally paying off, right here. It was like Susie was watching her own child eat breakfast, right here at this very table.

    As soon as Wilbur finished drinking his milk (the glass he was drinking from had a straw), Susie's mind watched an idea. What if Kirby came over to the laboratory and met Wilbur? That sounded nice, and Susie wanted Wilbur to have friends.

    “Hey, Wilbur? How'd you like to have a visitor here?” Wilbur didn't respond - at least not in the way Susie expected. His stomach growled loudly and he clutched, or tried to, it in an almost painful looking way.

    “Oh, you need to go?” Susie asked, placing her hand on his shoulder. Wilbur nodded in pain. She rushed to the main Laboratory's bathroom and opened the door for Wilbur, who promptly entered only a split-second afterward. Wilbur rushed to the toilet, where, after putting his face above the toilet hole, a rainbow-colored fluid forcibly gushed out of his mouth. It happened again after only a second of rest, this time with more force. It hurt Wilbur's stomach both times it happened, with Wilbur wincing in pain as he literally barfed rainbows. After the entire fiasco was over with, Wilbur stumbled out of the bathroom with an extremely uneasy look on his face. He groaned as he sauntered over to Susie and just stared at her.

    “Heh… sorry,  that's… j-just how your body gets rid of waste…” Susie explained awkwardly. Wilbur only blinked. “Oh, what about that friend coming over?” Susie suggested again, trying to lighten the mood. Wilbur cocked his head to the side. “His name is Kirby. He's a really good guy… here I'll go call him,” she uttered again, getting her phone.

    “Kirby…?” Wilbur moaned softly. He watched as Susie sat down at the table where they ate breakfast a few minutes ago. Susie waited a few seconds before she heard Kirby's familiar voice.

    “Hai!” Kirby happily said over the phone.  

    “Hey, Kirby, can you come over to the laboratory? I really wanna show you something.”

    “Poyo,” Kirby replied.

    “Good!” Susie said excitedly, “See you in a bit!” They both said their goodbyes, and Susie ended the call. “Good news, Wilbur: You're having your first friend over!”

    Wilbur cocked his head to the side and smiled. Susie couldn't wait to see Kirby in awe over her accomplishment. Besides, it's time the world recognize this extraordinary feat in Pop-Star technology. After five minutes of Susie and Wilbur playing a guessing game - specifically with a ball and three cups - Kirby arrived with a knock on the Laboratory's front door.

    “Oh, Kirby’s at the door! Wilbur, stay here while I introduce you to Kirby, okay?”

    “Okay,” Wilbur slurred. Susie rushed to the front door, where she greeted Kirby excitedly. “Greetings, Kirby!”

   “Hi Susie!” Kirby said excitedly.

    “Kirby, cover your eyes; I’m so excited to show you this!” Kirby happily played along and covered his eyes. Susie guided him to the table where Wilbur was sitting at. “Okay, you can open your eyes!” When Kirby did open his eyes, he just froze. And what sat before him made his once excited expression slowly grow to that of pure terror.

“You're a hairy lady

Hair from your head to your toes, girl

You're a hairy lady

You even got hair up your nose, girl”

    Kirby was just dumbstruck by what he was seeing. He could only describe it in two words: Bootleg Edward. That is literally what Kirby was looking at, a bootlegged Edward with watermelons for hands. That wasn’t the only thing that was different, though. His hair was shorter and more wavy. His clothing was much more simplistic in design, along with a spike-rimmed collar. His face was also notably different; it was completely white. Normal Edward's face had some pigmentation to it, but this Edward's face had no color. Bootleg Edward's lips were red instead of dark blue, and he had visible eyebrows… and he staring at Kirby with the creepiest smile on his face.

    “Oh, poyo…” Kirby stammered.

    “So, what do you think? His name is Wilbur. Isn't he the best?” Susie said excitedly, eager to hear Kirby's response.

    “Uh… ‘Best’ isn't the word I'd use…”

    “... Well, what word WOULD you use?”

    “Uh… Eccentric…?” Kirby said slowly.

    “Oh, I knew it!” Susie practically squealed. She tightly hugged Wilbur, “See, I told you having company was a good idea!”

“I see you talkin' with those other boys

I see you speakin', I don't hear no noise

Too busy loving all that fur, I see

Your body's hairier than a bumblebee

You're my honey, girl”

    Kirby, wanting to get away from the creepy man standing just 2 feet away, quickly uttered an excuse to do so. “I have to go to the bathroom,” he said bluntly and hurriedly rushed to the bathroom. Susie only looked on with a confused look.

    “Um… o-okay, just don't spend too much time in there.”

    Kirby, now in the bathroom, sat on the edge of the bathtub. He shook his head, trying to process what had just happened. Susie had called him over for a special surprise. And yet, lo and behold, the “surprise” was some creepy bootleg version of Edward. Wow. Just wow. That and he literally had watermelons for hands, which was just completely out of nowhere. Seriously, what even was the point in that? Kirby didn't know, and quite frankly, he probably never would. He rubbed his eyes, trying not to get too deep in thought. He got up and out of the bathroom.

    Once Kirby exited the bathroom, he came across Susie and Wilbur sitting next to each other. She piped up as soon as she noticed Kirby.

“Hairy girls, y'all best believe I'm a connoisseur

I look away if I don't see that matted fur

Hugging you is like a hug from a grizzly bear

Did I happen to mention...

I'm really into body hair, yeah”

    “Oh Kirby, I have to get some work done, why don't you and Wilbur spend some time together?”

    ‘Just what I needed,’ Kirby thought, ‘Having some ALONE time with this dude.’ But, Kirby decided to be a good friend and say “yes”.

    “Ohhh, Great! I can't wait for you two to get along!”

    Kirby only nodded, and Wilbur got up from his seat and took a step towards Kirby. Kirby himself was trying his hardest not express how creeped out he was, and just put on a fake but convincing smile. Wilbur guided Kirby to his room, where Kirby's feelings of unease only increased. Wilbur's room was creepily designed like a little kid's room. Wilbur sar down on the carpeted flooring in front of Kirby, a unsettling little smile on the former's face.

“It's plain to see you give your barber every night off

Every drain in your house is a total write-off”

    “So, what do you wanna do?” Kirby asked, looking around the room. There was a toy bin, a TV, and some other toys on top of a wide dresser, so it wouldn’t be too difficult to picking an activity. They could play with the pilifera of toys that Wilbur had. Tons of stuff to do. If all else failed, Kirby could just turn the TV on and leave Wilbur to do his own thing… whatever that is. After a few seconds of silence - and Wilbur staring at Kirby - Wilbur got up and stepped to the toy bin, but he stopped and looked at Kirby with a troubled look.

    “There’s a red ball in here somewhere… could you get it for me, Kirby?”

    A light shiver ran down Kirby’s back. Wilbur spoke in a low, creepy moan. Kirby tried to ignore his heebie-jeebies and waddled over to the toy bin. After rustling through the bin, Kirby spotted something bright red. Grabbing it and pulling it out, Kirby saw that it was a red play ball, about the size of a basketball. Wilbur smiled and looked at Kirby.

“Girl, you looking like a fur-covered miracle

And all those follicles, they got me waxing lyrical”

    “Thank you, Kirby.~” Wilbur moaned. Kirby only blinked. The way he said that... it was just creepy. Probably just Kirby’s opinion, but Wilbur’s voice was unsettling to listen to. However, Kirby’s thoughts were interrupted when Wilbur then passed the ball to him. Looks like they were playing catch, and Kirby couldn’t complain. They readied themselves at opposite sides of the room, with Kirby tapping his foot as a warm up exercise. Wilbur attempted to throw the ball to Kirby, but due to his faulty hands, it only reached halfway across the room, landing in between the two. Kirby grabbed the ball and carefully placed it in Wilbur's “hands”. He stepped back and gestured Wilbur to toss the ball. Hopefully Kirby would actually be able to catch it, since they were closer to each other. Wilbur attempted to throw the ball, but it fell out of his hands. Kirby then gave him the ball again, hoping that they'd be able to do it the third time around. Wilbur threw the ball, and Kirby caught it. Wilbur giggled at his success. Kirby then wound up and threw the ball to Wilbur, who messily caught it in between his arms and chest. Wilbur laughed, and threw the ball at Kirby again. Finally, they were getting somewhere.

    They did this for about five minutes, throwing the ball back and forth. Kirby had to say, he was actually enjoying himself, and Wilbur wasn’t creeping him out as much anymore. Speaking of Wilbur, he didn’t look like he was enjoying himself at this point. He was probably getting bored.

“Cause your hairy bod makes the guys all swoon

Don't shave or pluck or wax any time soon”

    “You’re getting bored, aren’t you?”

    “Yeah…”

    “You wanna watch TV?” Kirby asked, looking at the wall-mounted TV. Wilbur nodded, so they both sat down and Kirby turned the TV on. He flicked through the channels until he found his favorite daytime sitcom, “Life in the Day of Waddle Dee”. Kirby wanted to show it to Wilbur;  he needed to learn and get some taste in TV, especially at a young age. And you don’t better than “Life in the Day of Waddle Dee”, you just don’t. Amazing actors, awesome acting, genius humor, original plotlines; pure TV gold. Not at all like the other trash you see on TV. “The Dirty Dan Show”, “Poppy Bros. of Miami”, “You Don’t Get Me”, none of them held a candle to Kirby’s favorite show. There’s a rule separating the good from the bad: you’ve either got it, or you don’t. And “Life in the Day of Waddle Dee” had it ALL, let me tell you. Both Kirby and Wilbur watched over 4-hours worth of it. Wilbur laughed at all the jokes and Kirby was smirking the entire time. See, what I tell ya? Pure TV gold.

    By the time their 9th episode had ended, Susie had entered the room, happy to see that Kirby and Wilbur were getting along so well. But sadly, Kirby had gotten a text on his phone from Marx, saying that Edward - the OG Edward - wanted to spend some time with him and make paper crafts. Susie didn’t want to encroach on their Wilbur’s time with Kirby, but Marx could get whiny where Edward was concerned. Not wanting her ears to be almost blown out twice, she had to do what she had to do.

    “Kirby, Marx texted you; said that Edward wants to spend some time with you.”

    Kirby turned around and looked at Susie, then at Wilbur. He placed a hand on Wilbur’s shoulder, “Sorry I have to go, but I promise we’ll see each other sometime soon. Okay?”

    “Okay,” Wilbur breathed softly. He got up and looked at Susie.

    “I’ll walk you out. Would you like to join us, Wilbur?”

    “Yes, please,” Wilbur moaned.

    They all went to the laboratory's front door, where Kirby left with Wilbur solemnly waving goodbye. He looked at Susie sadly.

    “Don’t worry, Wilbur. Kirby is a man of his word, he’ll be back soon to spend time with you,” Susie stated reassuringly. Wilbur smiled in response. “Now follow me, I really want to show you this!” Wilbur immediately followed Susie, who was going to the laboratory's main computer. Wilbur gawked at what he saw: skeletal robotic hands, lying on a glowing surface on the desk beside the computer.

    “Wow…”

    “Soon, Wilbur, you will be in possession of these hands, and you shall have more power than you’ve ever dreamed of,” Susie said dramatically.

    “Wow, really?!” Wilbur gasped.

    “Oh, for sure! You’ll be able to grab things, eat by yourself at the table, all kinds of things!”

    “I… I never knew…” Wilbur whispered, playing along with Susies overly-dramatic yet justified tone. Susie reached up and patted him on the head, and he smiled again for the upteenth time that day. “Hey, can I watch TV in my room? I wanna see more of Kirby’s show.” Wilbur asked, wanting to more comedy gold.

    “Yes Wilbur, but just keep it on THAT specific channel, okay?”

    “Okay,” Wilbur assured and headed to his room. Susie didn’t really need to worry too much, he didn’t know how the TV really worked, anyway. After two more hours of side-splitting adventures with a Waddle Dee and his quirky family, Wilbur felt himself getting tired. Not that he was tired of the show, but he felt like he needed rest. He looked at the digital clock by his nightstand. “7:45” the clock read. Wilbur sighed, got and looked at the door. He didn’t want to bother Susie, since she was more than likely working on his new hands. But then Wilbur looked beside the door and found a red button on the wall. He pressed it and the door automatically opened. Wilbur walked over to Susie, who was, indeed, working on Wilbur’s hands, turned around and acknowledged him.

    “You ready for bed?”

    “Yeah, I’m tired…” Wilbur yawned.

    “Okay, let’s get you into bed.”

    And with that Susie and Wilbur walked into the latter’s room. Wilbur groggily put himself in bed and Susie tucked him in. After that was taken care of, Susie quietly worked on Wilbur’s hands for a little over an hour. By the time 9:00 rolled around, Susie decided it was best that she go to be as well, she needed to get her sleep schedule back on track.

    Hours into the night, at about 1:00 in the morning, Wilbur was woken up by a pain in his stomach. He groaned, and sat up in the bed. Not this again. It was bad enough during the day, but at night? Wilbur sighed quietly and got up. His mission was to head for the bathroom, puke rainbows, and make it back to his room in one piece. He walked slowly, trying not to go too fast to keep his stomach at ease. He opened his bedroom door, but the very second he left a rush of queasiness hit him like a semi truck. He rushed as fast as he could, and ultimately regretted it. Liquified rainbows splattered on the floor as Wilbur winced in pain. He tried taking another step but slipped on his own vomit, and came down on the floor, his head violently colliding with the multicolored surface in the process. He blacked out shortly afterward.

Chapter Text

     Wilbur groaned as he lay on the bathroom floor. Rainbow-colored splatters were present on the toilet seat, as well as on the floor. He felt pain in his stomach and head. Late last night, he had gotten up to go puke, but he didn’t make it and ultimately ended up slipping on his own throw up. He violently hit his head on the floor, passing out the second the impact was made. Only half an hour later, he regained consciousness. The pain in his head was searing and volatile. Wilbur winced as the back of his head throbbed, a glittering, multicolored fluid dripping from the wound that had resulted from his collision course. He laid there in the dark laboratory, the stabbing pain from the back of his head rendering him unable to move. Tears welled up in his eyes as he slowly turned his head to the bathroom door. He began to sob, a single tear rolling down his pale-white cheek.

     “S-Sweet Tarts… I n-need h-help… I…  fell… a-and… I didn’t m-make it… Sweet T-Tarts… I… it h-hurts… ”

     Wilbur laid there for over two-and-half hours, dazed and in pain, quietly sobbing for help. After all the waterworks and pleas that fell on deaf ears, he worked up the strength to prop himself up on his elbows and slowly make his way to the bathroom door. The only sounds in the room  at this point were his uneven breathing and the light squeaks made by his boots and elbows colliding with and sliding on the smooth flooring under him. Once he crawled to his desitionation, he spotted the button next to it, the only way he was going to get in. He very slowly and unevenly got up to his feet, a queasy feeling slowly but surely building up inside him. He pressed the button and the bathroom door made a clicking noise, opening itself for Wilbur.

     He stumbled into the bathroom, the feeling of unevenness in his stomach now more prevalent than ever. Wilbur felt his stomach churn, and he swayed forward. He aimed for the toilet, but he miscalculated, and rainbows flew out of his mouth and onto the floor. He slipped again, barfing in the process, glowing colors and glitter flying everywhere. He landed back-first, his head again colliding with the floor, though the damage was to nowhere near of an extreme of a degree as as last time, and he didn’t black out. Wilbur moaned in pain. The dull pain in his head immediately exploded again. He looked around slowly, seeing the colorful paint glitter splattered around the toilet and floor. His rainbow-splattered chest slowly rose and fell, his light breathing the only sound in the once chaotic, now quiet room.

     And here he was now, a few hours afterward. He had not idea what time it was. In fact, he could barely think. He barely got any sleep last night, and he hit his head on the floor twice. He slowly got up in a sitting position, and lightly shook his head. He felt hungover, with his big fat fiasco just the night before to justify it completely. When he was at his feet, he stared at his mess with a disgruntled look. He sighed dejectedly, but perked up the second a knock hit the bathroom door, with a familiar but concerned voice accompanying it.

    “Wilbur? You okay in there?”

    “I’m okay…” Wilbur replied groggily.

    Susie opened the door and cringed when she saw his messy state. He had throw up all over him, colors of all shades and pigments covering his face, torso and legs. He also look extremely tired, like had been up all night because he just couldn’t get to sleep. His eyes were bloodshot and he had visible bags under his eyes.

    “Goodness, Wilbur… you look terrible…”

    “I feel terrible…” Wilbur moaned. He needed to clean himself up and get some rest. It was taking everything he had to keep his eyes open.

    “Here wilbur, lets clean you up. You can take a nap afterwards if you want.” Yes. Oh, Wilbur wanted that so bad. He’d be clean, and he’d be able to rest. Afterwards, he’d be his childlike and energetic self once more. Wilbur nodded, wanting to get some sleep. “Okay. I’ll get you a shower ready.” Susie said, walking to the bathtub. She turned the shower on, water running from the shower head. She set the water temperature to a comforting warm, and gestured at Wilbur. “This is how a shower works. You step in and the water runs over you, getting all the gunk off you.” Wilbur only blinked. He slowly stepped in the bathtub. Once in the shower,he began to appreciate the calming feeling of the warm water running on and down his head. It was calming. Susie grabbed a washcloth put it in the warm water.  After it was saturated, she looked at Wilbur’s face. “Wilbur, could you bend down, please?”

    Wilbur sat down in the bathtub and Susie scrubbed the dried vomit off of his face. After this, she scrubbed his the back of his black jumpsuit, all the color washing off of it.

    “You can stand back up, now.” Wilbur did as Susie said, and stood up in the bathtub. She scrubbed the rest of the rainbow vomit his off his jumpsuit-covered body. After this, Wilbur was clean, all the puke from last night being stripped off his body completely. He felt elated. He smiled and exhaled in delight. He never felt so at peace. However, the warm, rain-like rush of water abruptly stopped as susie shut the shower off. He turned his head to Susie, who was grabbing a towel from a small closet. “Let’s get you dried off,” she said calmly. Wilbur stepped out of the shower, his large hands at his sides. Susie, towel in hand, reach up and started to dry Wilbur’s hair. When she was done, Wilbur looked at his reflection in the mirror and giggled. He looked silly with his hair all messy like that.

    After Susie was done drying his body off, she grabbed a hair brush and chair. She positioned the chair in front of a mirror. Wilbur sat down, and Susie gently brushed his wavy jet-black hair. He closed his eyes and smiled, enjoying the feeling of having his hair brushed. After all this was finished, Wilbur, while he was still extremely tired, felt like he was walking on air. He had no idea being clean could be this good. Susie walked Wilbur to his room, where he could practically here the bed calling his name. He slumped down in the bed, enjoying its warm embrace. Susie tucked him in. Susie left the room, watching his sleeping form before she exited. She was going back to work on Wilbur’s hands, when she suddenly remembered the mess in the bathroom, and sighed.

    “I see you…” A whisper echoed in Wilbur’s head as he slowly opened his eyes, prematurely waking him from his nap.

    “Huh?” Wilbur muttered.

    “It’s me, kid,” the voice whispered. Wilbur looked around in fear. Was his room haunted? Wilbur’s fear only rose when the voice started muttering again. “Listen, kid, your room isn’t haunted. I’m a voice in your head.”

    “In my head…?” Wilbur questioned, becoming confused. “W-wait, who are you?” He asked, becoming scared again.

    “Remember when you hit your head and you passed out?” The voice said. It was now speaking at a normal level, no longer whispering. For some reason, the voice had a heavy Brooklyn accent. “I’m the result your little accident. And here’s something else you should know: I can control your body.”

    “Wh… What?” Wilbur said in disbelief. That’s when Wilbur’s arm suddenly flew upward, without him even telling it to. Wilbur only stared at his now outstretched arm in horror. No… No, no, no. This couldn't be happening. There was no way some random disembodied voice in his head was controlling his every move. This isn't happening. This isn’t happening. This. Is. Not. Happening. Wilbur was in complete and utter denial over what was happening. He was dreaming. Yeah, that was probably it. He was just having a nightmare. A bad nightmare. Wilbur closed his eyes and focused, hoping he’d wake up from this bad nightmare.

    “Listen, kid. You are fully awake right now. Don’t bother.” Wilbur opened his eyes and frowned. He looked around his room frantically. He thought that there was no way this couldn't be a nightmare. He was heavily denying that it was. But it was true. Terribly, thrufully true. It took Wilbur almost a minute to realize this, and when he did, he began to cry. There was some random guy in his head that could control his body, and Wilbur didn’t like that in the slightest. Just the thought of Wilbur not being in control of his own body was enough to make him shiver in unease.

    “Enough with the waterworks, kid!” The voice complained.

    “W-Why are you inside m-me?” Wilbur bawled.

    “Look, when you hit your head last night, I entered your brain through a would that formed because of it. How that idiot scientist didn’t notice it while brushing your hair is beyond me. Oh, there's’ another thing I need to tell you: Don’t tell anyone about me, or else…”

    “Or e-else what?” Wilbur sniffled. That’s when his arm suddenly flew again, landing his large watermelon hand a mere inch from his face. Wilbur completely froze.

    “Haven’t you figured this out, yet? I’m in complete and utter control of you. Which means I can make you beat yourself to a pulp if you tell a single soul about me being in your brain. Trust me. I. WILL. RUIN. YOU.”

    Wilbur whimpered. To say he was afraid was an understatement. He was completely petrified. There was some strange alien force controlling his body, able to make Wilbur beat himself to death if he so much as opened his mouth about it. What was most unsettling to Wilbur though was that the voice was in complete control of his body, meaning that it could do whatever it wanted, even bad things.

    “Listen kid, it’s not as bad as you think. I won’t be controlling you a lot, only when I absolutely need to. I’ll only talk when absolutely necessary, too. So you can stop the waterworks.”

   Wilbur sniffed. “Okay… i-if you say so.” Wilbur turned to his side and stared at the wall. “By the way… what should I call you?” Wilbur asked.

    “Call me… Antares.”

    Wilbur only blinked. Seemed like a good enough name for… I don't know, a potentially murderous virus demon? Wilbur wasn't completely calm, he was still shaken by what was happening, but his panicked state had decreased slightly. He was a little tense, but he had stopped bawling, with only haggard breaths in place of waterworks. He sighed and, as miraculous as it sounds, fell into a light sleep.

    When Wilbur woke, he sat up and yawned. It was only 30 minutes after he had woken up the second time. He looked around, got up and looked at his nightstand clock. It was 3:30 in the afternoon. He blinked, recognizing the time, and sauntered over to the door. He pressed the button on wall, and the door opened for him. He peeked his head out the door and looked at Susie, who was still working on his hands.

    “Sweet Tarts?” He said quietly. Susie perked up and turned around.

    “Oh, hi Wilbur. You finished your naptime?”

    “Yes…” Wilbur replied shyly.

   “Well, I have good news for you: your hands are almost finished! They should be finished and operational by tomorrow morning!” Susie said excitedly. Wilbur smiled. He liked the thought of being more autonomous… even if he secretly liked having Susie baby him. Still though, it would be nice to do some tasks by himself. Wilbur walked over to Susie and sat down in a chair next to her.

    “Can I watch you work?” Wilbur asked.

    “Sure!” Susie said, happy to spend time with her son, or who was technically her son. She did build him, after all. Wilbur watched as Susie typed in commands and codes for the hands. He didn’t know what most of it meant, but what he did know is that it was very complicated. He felt flattered almost, that he was this complex. Hell, he was very likely more complex than even this, given that these were just hands. He also respected Susie for understanding so complicated. She must be very smart if she built him in his entirety.

    After three hours of work, Wilbur was starting to get bored. As much as hated to admit it, he was getting bored of the seemingly never ending streams of code and such. He turned his attention to Susie.

    “Sweet Tarts?” Wilbur moaned.

    “Yes, Wilbur?” Susie responded.

    “…Can I go play in my room for a bit?”

    “You’re getting bored of this, aren’t you?”

    “Yeah… sorry…”

    “You don’t have to feel sorry, Wilbur, Heck, I get bored doing this sometimes, too. But I always tell myself to just do it.”

    “Why?”

    “Because I know that when I finish it, it’ll pay off big time.”

    “Wow… uh, can I go play, now?”

    “Yes, Wilbur.”

    “Okay… thank you…” and with that, Wilbur got up and walked to his room, waving at Susie before he closed the door. Once he was in his room, Wilbur walked over to the toy bin and grabbed a teddyfish that was laying on top of all the other toys, as well as  his red ball, and sat down. He positioned the two toys so that they were across from each other. He then began his playtime, making the two talk to each other.

    “‘Tis a lovely evening, is it not, Sir Wellington?” Said Teddyfish in a fancy accent.

    “Quite.” Said the red ball, named Sir Wellington, in an equally extravagant accent.

    “I think I fancy seeing Prince Wilbur today. I heard the Queen is giving him his first pair of hands!”

    “Oh, how delightful! The Prince will finally be able to more autonomous, how tremendous it will be.”

    “I also heard that the Prince will be hosting be a party. They’ll be serving chowder and wheat bread, and those fancy bubbly waters he loves so much.”

    “Ooh, the fizzy water! I simply cannot contain myself!”

    “Yes, it will be a-”

    That’s when another voice - one with a Brooklyn accent - suddenly entered the scene, “Watch out, there’s a killer loose in the house!” That’s when Wilbur’s arm suddenly flew upwards, and his hand flew downwards to Teddyfish, violently hitting the plush toy. Said arm then hurdled to Sir Wellington, hitting and bouncing the ball across the room. All of these actions were without Wilbur being in control of his arm, which could only mean one thing: Antares was doing all of it.

    “Antares, w-what are you doing?!” Wilbur demanded, hurt and confused.

    “Y-You… You killed them! You MURDERER!” Antares yelled.

    “N-No, that was you!” Wilbur stated, trying to be as firm as possible.

    “Shut up, you killer! You're going in the closet!”

    “What?!” That’s when Antares made Wilbur get to his feet, and forced him over to the open closet. Wilbur tried to resist but to no avail.

    “Oh no, he’s resisting! I’ll take care of this!” Wilbur was then suddenly whacked in the side of the head with a watermelon, sending him straight to the ground. Antares forced his legs to move, once again making Wilbur stand upright. Once in the closet, Antares forced Wilbur to sit down, and controlled his hand to push a button in the inside of the closet to close the doors.

    “W-Wait, why is there a button-"

    “YOU need a nice, long stay in solitary confinement!” Antares ordered. He forced Wilbur’s arms in a straitjacket-like position. “I cannot believe you, Wilbur. You just murdered two of your subjects! They looked up to you, and you just threw them away like trash. You monster. You crazy, demented, psychotic monster.

    “But.. I didn’t do it…” Wilbur moaned. This wasn’t fair. He was supposed to be having a good time, playing with his toys, but no. Antares butted in, ‘killed’ two of his most favorite toys, and blamed Wilbur for it just because he made him do it. And on top of it, Antares arrested Wilbur and put him in a ‘padded cell’ with an invisible straight jacket on like he was criminally insane. Wilbur was dumbfounded and angry; dumbfounded at what had just happened and the swiftness of it all, and angry because he technically got falsely accused of murder. It was taking him everything to not have a crying fit for the second time that day. It might sound a little immature, but Wilbur was like a child, akin to his inspiration.

    The next two and a half hours were spent in Wilbur's little funny farm. He thought about certain matters while all alone in that claustrophobic closet. What if he actually was going crazy? He had a evil, backstabbing voice in his head, which was not normal. The only contradiction was that said voice could control his movements, so… maybe not? Wilbur shook his head. Goodness, why did this have to be so complicated. He looked down at his arms, still locked together across his chest. He had tried to free his arms multiple times, all of which were fruitless. His attempts were cut short when a voice in his head suddenly spoke, making Wilbur jump.

    “I think the kid's had enough.” Wilbur's arms then relaxed and went limp. He moved his arms about, enjoying the sweet state of control. “Okay, kid, listen. The only reason we put you in the lunatic asylum is because you're only a minor and couldn't put you in an actual jailhouse, so you're lucky we're only letting you off with a warning.”

   “Thank you…” Wilbur said, thankful he was finally able to wake up from this nightmare.

    “Don't get too cocky, kid. Attempt something like that again and you'll be getting more than just a trip to the loony bin, kapeesh?”

    “Yes,” Wilbur responded, trying not to get angry at Antares for suggesting that Wilbur committed murder when it was clearly Antares himself that caused it. Speaking of which, Antares went dead silent after his response. Wilbur sighed and looked at the clock. 6:46. Man, time flies. He walked to the door, opened it, and sauntered over to Susie, who was still working on his hands.

    “Hey, Wilbur. You done with your toys?” Susie said, turning around to face him.

    “Yeah…” Wilbur said wearily. He blinked slowly.

    “Are you tired? You sure look like it,” Susie stated, acknowledging Wilbur's groggy state.

    “Yes, very tired. I wanna go to bed…”

    “Are you sure? It's only a little after 6:30.” Wilbur groaned and closed his eyes. “Okay, if you say so, then I'll get you to bed.” They walked to Wilbur's bedroom, where Wilbur collapsed on the bed and Susie tucked him in. Susie walked out of the room while Wilbur lay there, sound asleep. She had to remind herself that this would all pay off in a couple if hours. Just some more work on Wilbur's new hands and all this hard work would pay off.

    And while Wilbur was in a state of temporary bliss, Antares was scheming something fierce.

Chapter Text

Wilbur slowly opened his glassy eyes. Once he was fully awake, ke stared at his bedroom ceiling, enjoying the comforting embrace of the blankets that were covering him. He smiled dreamily as he turned to lay on his side. Today was the big day, the day where Wilbur would get a pair of hands. Oh, the endless amounts of activities he’d be able to do first-hand (pun half-intended). He’d be able to play with all of his toys by himself, eat his own food and use his own silverware, use his bedroom TV remote and much, much more. Wilbur sighed slowly, and looked back up at the ceiling.

“Mr. Sun came up and he smiled at me,

He said, ‘It's gonna be a good one, just wait and see!’”

    After a couple more minutes of fantasizing, Wilbur decided to make his dream a reality. He got up out of bed, removing the covers the best he could, and walked to his bedroom door. After opening the door, he caught sight of Suzie working on the giant computer situated on the other side of the laboratory. She turned around and, when she turned around, got up off her chair and headed her way to Wilbur. Once she got close enough, she hugged him tightly.

“Jumped out of bed and I ran outside,

Feeling so extra ex-satisfied!”

    “They’re ready, Wilbur… they're ready.” she said triumphantly.

“I’m so excited.” Wilbur said gleefully. He smiled and gently patted Suzie’s head.

“It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)

It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)”

    “Come on, Wilbur. Let’s do this!” Susie said excitedly as the two rushed to what looked like a hospital bed by the large computer, along with some other strange machines. Wilbur looked at the scene with a concerned look on his face. He loved the fact that he was getting new hands, but this did not look too promising.

“I'm so busy, got nothing to do,

Spent the last two hours just tying my shoe.”

    “Is… is this going to be painful?” Wilbur asked shyly, lying down on the bed.

    “No, Wilbur. It’ll be completely painless,” Susie reassured. “Oh, here, put this on,” Susie said, handing him a anesthetic mask. Wilbur only blinked at at. “Oh, right, you can’t right now,” she said nervously, “Here, I’ll put it on for you.”

“Every flower, every grain of sand,

Is reaching out to shake my hand.”

    “Thank you,” Wilbur said as Susie wrapped the mask around his face, covering his nose and mouth. Susie then directed her attention to a small tank, and she turned a crank on top of it. “Uh… what’s this mask supposed to do- ugh…” Wilbur fainted due to the anesthesia, falling asleep on the bed. After a few seconds of Wilbur being unconscious, susie ran her hands through his hair.

    “It’s time for you to shine… son…”

“It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)

It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)”

    The entire procedure took about two-and-a-half hours. Susie made sure to give Wilbur a decent amount of anesthesia to ensure that he’d be asleep for that period of time. She removed Wilbur's watermelon hands, and replaced them with the normal ones. The surgery was ultimately a success. After Susie was all done with the surgery, she held Wilbur’s hand. The anesthesia hadn't fully worn off yet, so he was still unconscious. The skin of new his hands had the same pigmentation - or lack thereof - as his face. The hands themselves were a little lanky, fitting the rest of Wilbur’s figure. Susie gently squeezed his hand and looked at his sleeping face.

“Those clouds don't scare me they can't disguise,

This magic that's happened right before my eyes.”

    He was complete. He was before, but now he was perfect. A fully functional human made from both organic and robotic material. Susie wanted to cry. She had just passed one of the biggest hurdles in the robotic industry on Pop Star. This took her almost half an entire year to complete and perfect him, but here he was now. When Susie first activated him, she felt a thrill unlike anything she had felt before. Now that he was complete, Susie felt elated to say the very least. She felt like she was in Heaven.

“Soon Mr. Moon will be shining bright,

So the best day ever can last all night.

Yes, the best day ever is gonna last all night now.”

    “Ugh,” Wilbur groaned. He was starting to wake up from his anesthesia-induced nap. Susie let go of his hand. “Sweet Tarts…?”

    “The surgery was a success, Wilbur. You now have hands.” Wilbur looked at his arms. His eyes widened and his mouth hung ajar. It was true, Wilbur now had fully-functioning proper hands. He moved and wiggled them about in uneven and random motions, trying to get used to the new appendages. Susie was pleasantly watching him the entire time, with her hand on her shoulder. Wilbur looked at Susie, then his hands, then back at Susie again. He then reached over and gave Susie a big hug.

“It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)

It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)”

    “Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you!”

    “Heh, it was my pleasure, Wilbur.” Wilbur had kept himself connected to Susie for almost a minute before reluctantly letting go. “Okay, now that you have hands, I want to do some activities that’ll get you used to them.” After disconnecting Wilbur from the machines and big computer, they proceeded with said activities. These included Wilbur picking up, coordinating and placing colored blocks; eating carrot sticks with a fork; drawing random images on paper; playing on a toy xylophone; playing with modeling clay; and even him playing with the TV remote. After a day’s worth of activities, Wilbur was completely in control of his hands and could coordinate them with skill. Susie and Wilbur both had a lot of fun doing the activities; so much so that they lost track of time. By the time they finished, it was almost 9:00 at night. When a tired Susie noticed this, she requested that they both stop and hit the hay. Wilbur didn’t complain since he was starting to get tired himself.

“It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)

It's the best day eveeeeer! (Best day eveeeer!)”

    They did the normal bedtime routine of Wilbur getting into bed and Susie tucking him in. Wilbur actually pulled back the covers when he got in the bed, the first time he ever did, due to him having proper hands and fingers. He really enjoyed the soft feel of the blankets. After Susie told Wilbur goodnight and left the room, her phone buzzed. She checked it and saw that she had gotten a text from Marx.

    “You got time to come over tomorrow? Edward wants to see you.”

    Susie texted back, “You sure?”

    “You haven’t been to the house in two months. Edward’s worried.”

    “Marx, I apologize, but I don’t think I’d be able to make it tomorrow.”

    After a few seconds of inactivity: “Susie, Edward desperately wants to spend time with you. Do you really want to go against his wishes?”

    “No, but I still need to work.”

    “Just come over tomorrow.”

    Susie was completely torn now. She needed to be with Wilbur so she could teach him some more things she thought he needed to learn… but at the same time she really wanted to see Edward again. After a minute of contemplating, she reached a compromise: she’d childproof the lab early the next morning, leave Wilbur to play with his toys so he’d be occupied, and she’d see Edward while she was gone. Sounded like a good plan of action to her. She then texted Marx back. “Okay, I can come over tomorrow.”

    “Oh, good! See you tomorrow afternoon then.”

    “See you then.”

    Susie thought that was the end of her and Marx’s little conversation, but then Marx started texting again.

    “Oh, by the way, I want to tell you something.”

    “What?”

    “DO NOT RUIN THIS FOR EDWARD.”

    Goodness. Were the all caps really necessary? Oh well, that was Marx for you, overprotective but doesn’t know it. He never, EVER let Edward out into public, in fear of the slightest bad thing happening to either Edward or Marx. With Marx around, Edward might as well still be living in that doggone castle. Hell, you could just so much as give Edward the stink eye and Marx would get pissed. Oh, and did Susie happen to mention that one time where Marx screamed at her so loudly that she had to go to an otolaryngologist’s office for two weeks straight to get her hearing working correctly again? All because she made the SLIGHTEST joke about Edward. Marx loved Edward to a fault, to the point where Marx could get a little crazy.

    And there was Marx’s Soul form. Oh my word, his Soul form. Marx was already a powerful boy the way it was. But throw in Marx Soul and he becomes a walking weapon of mass destruction, capable of destroying entire planets in mere hours. Thank goodness Edward never saw it, because it was absolutely terrifying. Imagine Marx being rewritten as an HP Lovecraftian monster. Throw in a scream capable of destroying the ear drums of anyone in a ten-mile radius and you have Marx Soul.

    As Susie tucked herself in that night, a heart-stopping thought crossed her mind: “What if Marx found out about Wilbur?” Time itself almost stopped as Susie’s eyes widened in fear. Pure, unadulterated fear. She couldn't even begin to imagine how angry Marx would be. Given how Marx is with Edward, ‘angry’ wouldn’t even begin to cover it. The worst of thoughts ran through her mind, all of which involving Marx Soul. Specifically, what Marx Soul would do to Wilbur. Susie’s breathing slowly but surely accelerated as she thought of all the horrific ways it could go down. Marx Soul would obviously kill Wilbur on the spot, instantly destroying half a year’s worth of hard work, but how? Tons of mortifying, gory deaths played in Susie’s brain. Thoughts of Marx Soul tearing Wilbur completely in half, with blood and organs spilling all over the floor. Thoughts of Marx Soul tearing Wilbur’s head clean off. Thoughts of Marx Soul tearing Wilbur’s limbs out of their sockets, and using them to beat Wilbur to death.

    These thoughts and then some ran in Susie’s mind like a broken record. She didn’t get an inch of sleep that night. She kept thinking of Marx Soul killing Wilbur in every gruesome way possible. When the morning sun started to shine, Susie was still wide awake and petrified. Finally snapping out of her trance, she shook her head and looked at the clock. It was 7:00 in the morning. Oh well, at least she didn’t wake up after 11:30. She sat up and rubbed her eyes. Man, after last night, she almost didn’t want to see Marx. But she was a woman of her word, and said she would visit Marx and Edward. Now, before she would leave, she needed to childproof the entire laboratory, preferably before Wilbur woke up. She finally exited her room and got to work.

    First and foremost, she got all the dangerous lab equipment and put them in a large storage closet on the second floor. After Susie was done with that, she secured all loose cables and wires and covered up the electrical sockets, which was easy since not a lot of them were present. After making sure that all the pill and medicine bottles had child safety caps, she was finished securing the lab for Wilbur's safety. It only took her an hour, too.

    Susie looked at a nearby clock and saw that it was a little after 8:30. She went to Wilbur's bedroom door and, knocked on it. After a couple of seconds, the doorknob turned and the door opened, revealing a pleased-looking Wilbur. The two smiled at each other.

    “Hi, Sweet Tarts…” Wilbur moaned.

    “Good morning, Wilbur.” Unexpectedly, Wilbur bent down and hugged Susie, his arms wrapping around her slim figure. He pressed his cheek on Susie's. Susie herself blushed at the sudden affectionate gesture.

    “Uh… T-Thank you, Wilbur,” She said awkwardly. Wanting to break the silence, she spoke again. “What do you want for breakfast?”

    “... Waffles?” Wilbur breathed. It was the only thing he could think of from the top of his head. That and he really enjoyed the last time they had waffles.

    “Okay, we can have waffles,” Susie agreed. With that, they went to the kitchenette part of the laboratory, where the would commence their meal. Susie got out the waffles and toaster and Wilbur got the butter and syrup out of the fridge. Wilbur was smiling joyfully the entire time, not only because he was enjoying his time with Susie, but also because Antares was keeping his big fat mouth shut. He had been silent for almost a day and a half, and Wilbur was thankful beyond words for it. Maybe the day Antares had introduced himself was him being a jerk and after that day he decided to find someone else to torment. Whatever, Wilbur was just glad Antares was gone.

While Susie and Wilbur were eating, Susie brought up what she had wanted to say, “Wilbur, I have to see a friend later today, so I'm trusting you to stay by yourself. You think you can spend an hour here without me?” Susie asked, hoping to God that Wilbur would say yes.

    “... I think so,” Wilbur replied slowly. A confused expression then crawled its way on his face, “what'll I do while your gone, though?”

    “You can play with your toys, watch TV, take a nap, pretty much anything. Just don't mess with anything that looks dangerous, okay?” Susie stated. Wilbur nodded, conveying that he understood Susie's commands. After they finished breakfast, Susie got ready to go to Marx's house. Wilbur watched her with his trademark zoned-out stare. After Susie was ready, she hugged Wilbur, “Bye, Wilbur. I'll see you after a little bit.”

    Wilbur watched as Susie reluctantly closed the door, “Bye, Wilbur,” she said again before completely closing the door. However, only a second later, she opened the door again, “See you later, Wilbur, love you,” she said before closing the door and finally leaving. As she walked away from the building, with a bead of sweat trickling down her forehead, only one thing ran through her mind, ‘Please let this visit go smoothly.’

    Back at the laboratory, Wilbur stood in the middle of the main room. He looked around curiously, thinking of all the stuff he’d do while Susie was away. He looked to his bedroom door, and decided on playing with his toys until Susie got back. However, only after he took two steps, he heard a faint voice outside the laboratory.

    “Okay, did I go left before?… No, that can’t be right... "

    Wilbur turned around with a confused look. The voice sounded nothing like Antares, so it had to be someone right outside. Wilbur walked to the entrance door and looked through the peephole. A confused Waddle Dee was staring at a paper map, turning it and mumbling to himself. After Wilbur looked away from the peephole, a nearby voice spoke, making Wilbur jump a mile.

    “That looks like a good one, right there.” It was Antares. That little backstabber was back, and Wilbur immediately started to become afraid. His heart rate accelerated as he shakily asked Antares why he was back after a day and half of absence.

    “W-What are you doing back?” Wilbur mumbled, looking upward towards no one.

    “I only left you alone because I was scheming,” Antares said, acknowledging and confirming his reason for absence. Wilbur gulped when he heard ‘scheming,’ and his heartbeat only quickened. Antares plus scheming only meant trouble.

    “W-What where you s-scheming?” Wilbur asked, his fear growing. Given what a backstabbing sneak Antares was, Wilbur did not want to know, but asked anyway.

    “You’ll see,” Antares muttered smugly. This was going to be a disaster, Wilbur could practically feel it. His lips quivered as he looked through the peephole again. The Waddle Dee was still there, albeit sitting down instead of standing up. Wilbur stepped back and, after only a second of thinking, his eyes grew as wide as saucers and his heart almost stopped.

    Wilbur knew what Antares was planning. He was going to make Wilbur hurt that Waddle Dee. Wilbur looked up and shook his head from side to side, and spoke in a quiet, raspy voice . “A-Antares… please don’t,” Wilbur quietly pleaded, his voice barely above a whisper. However, his pleads fell on deaf ears as Wilburs arms started to shake uncontrollably.

    “Hold on a second, just let me get into control, here,” Antares said in a heavily concentrated manner. That’s when Wilbur’s arms were thrown at his sides, and his legs started to direct him to the front door. His hand pressed a button next to the door, and the door opened a second afterwards. Wilbur himself felt like he was going to have a panic attack. Antares couldn’t do this. Antares couldn’t make Wilbur do this. Wilbur tried to resist with all his might, but he had lost all control. After the door opened, the Waddle Dee looked up from his map and to Wilbur.

    “Oh, hey, could you help with this? I’m lost… I thought I took a left, but I didn’t,” the Waddle Dee said, looking up at Wilbur. Wilbur didn’t want to answer, nor even move or acknowledge the Waddle Dee. What Wilbur DID want was to scream to that Waddle Dee that there was a murderous voice inside his head; to warn the Waddle Dee that his life was on the line and that he was gonna die if he didn’t hightail it out of there; to scream from the rooftops that he needed serious professional help. However, Wilbur couldn't do this, since Antares would definitely kill him on the spot. After a few seconds of silence, Wilbur started to speak, his mouth moving autonomously.

    “Yes, I think I can help you,” Wilbur - or technically Antares controlling Wilbur - said.

    “Oh, thank you,” the Waddle Dee said with a relieved sigh. “Can I come in?”

    “Yes,” Wilbur said. On the outside, Wilbur was calm and collected. You couldn’t even tell he was actually a paranoid person with schizophrenia in desperate need of psychiatric help. Wilbur’s eye twitched slightly as he watched the Waddle Dee walk inside.

    “Ugh, I forgot my phone… Is it okay if I use your computer if you have one?”

    “Yes,” Wilbur said, faking his calm state as usual. The Waddle Dee was in awe over all the gizmos and gadgets of the laboratory.

    “Dang… you did all this?”

    “No… my mom built everything,” Wilbur calmly confirmed. If it wasn’t obvious that Antares was controlling Wilbur’s body, it was now. He never did refer to Susie as his mom, just by the nickname “Sweet Tarts”.

    “Your mom’s a genius, man,” the Waddle Dee said in awe. He walked to the massive computer in the center of the laboratory, and started to fiddle with it,  likely searching for a map of his location. While the Waddle Dee was doing his thing, Wilbur heard Antares pipe up again.

    “Okay, time for the second phase,” Antares said as he made Wilbur rush to the stairway. He went to the second floor, where after looking around, found a door leading to a storage closet. After entering, Wilbur looked around the neatly organized closet before he found what he was looking for: a large metal baseball bat. A demented smile crawled onto Wilbur's face as he picked it up. He ran his hands across it, admiring his weapon of choice. He then very slowly waltzed down the stairs, hiding the hat behind his back in a childlike manner. Just as he hit the bottom step, almost as if on cue, the Waddle Dee was finished with his business, stepping away from the computer.

    “Thank you for letting me use your computer,” he said politely.

    “No trouble at all, sir,” Wilbur said calmly - ironic considering his heart was racing at 100 miles an hour and he felt like he was going to vomit. As the Waddle Dee was slowly walking away, Wilbur looked up and, with tears in the his eyes, made one last mental plea to Antares; to have a heart and not do what he was about to make Wilbur do. But his pleas fell on deaf ears, and a single tear crawled down Wilbur's face as Antares slowly lifted Wilbur's arms, baseball bat ready. There was only one thing Wilbur could do now, and, with his haggard voice barely above a whisper, he said, “I'm… I-I'm so… s-sorry…”

    Only a second later, the metal bat was brought down. A loud, chilling thud was heard as the bat violently collided with the Waddle Dee's head, a small splatter of blood accompanying it.

“Rainbow Monkeys, Rainbow Monkeys,

Oh so very round and super chunky!”

Pain instantly blasted into the poor stranger’s head, but before the Waddle Dee could comprehend what was going on, Wilbur reeled back and thrust the bat downward again. An equally rattling thud was heard again, but this time more blood splattered on Wilbur's weapon as well as on the Waddle Dee's head.

“Bringing love wherever they go,

Everyone's made of a big rainbow!”

The Waddle Dee stumbled and fell to his side, the second hit causing him to lose consciousness. Wilbur winded up again, aiming for the Waddle Dee's upward-facing side. After another blunt, bloody hit, Wilbur wound back and hit the barely alive Waddle Dee again. And again… and again… and again.

 

“Oh, red and orange, and pink and blue,

Rainbow Monkeys, Rainbow Monkeys,

We love yooooouuuu!”

   Wilbur, who was now screaming in rage, continuously kept beating the Waddle Dee. After Wilbur’s bloody, horrific tantrum had ended, he stared at the mess caused by it. The Waddle Dee was dead from the excessive blunt trauma, his cold body lying on the once sterile ground. Blood was splattered all over Wilbur’s bat; the same red substance collecting in a small pool und the Waddle Dee. Wilbur could practically taste the metallic red wine on his lips, because he actually could. During the attack, some blood splattered on Wilbur’s lips, and he almost enjoyed the taste of it when he licked his lips.

    After staring at the corpse for a few seconds, Wilbur paused. His wicked grin slowly but surely dropped to an upset frown. His tight grip on the bat loosened, and eventually it fell out of his hand and onto the ground with a loud clang. Wilbur’s lips opened slightly, and they quivered as tears welled up in his eyes. To say he was in shock was an understatement. He was mortified, almost unable to comprehend what had just happened. He tried to speak, but only haggard moans came out of his throat. He slowly dropped to his knees, in front of the dead Waddle Dee, and finally was able to croak out some speech.

    “A… A-Ant… Wha… how… Antares… w-why?...”  Wilbur choked. Tears rolled down his cheeks as he demanded an answer. After a second, Antares responded for the first time since Wilbur’s episode, but not in the way Wilbur wanted him to. Wilbur found himself getting up to his feet, walking to the sink where he grabbed a bottle of bleach from the cabinet below it, along with a washcloth. Wilbur knew what Antares was trying to do: cover up the murder by cleaning the crime scene, wiping out and and all evidence. Wilbur walked to the corpse, where Antares made him pour some bleach on the washcloth. Wilbur cleaned up all the blood off the floor and off the metal bat. After about 5 minutes of scrubbing and elbow grease, all the red was cleared. All he needed to do was dispose the body, and Antares knew exactly how to do it.

    “Hey, kid; you see that big trash can lookin’ thing over there over there?” Antares said, pointing Wilbur’s head in the direction of what indeed looked like a big trash can cemented into the ground. Wilbur reluctantly sauntered over to it and, after pressing a wall-mounted button next to it, the lid opened, only revealing a fiery pit below. It wasn't a trash can, it was an incinerator. After a few seconds, the incinerator lid closed. Antares then made Wilbur walk over the Waddle Dee's body, pick it up and slowly struggle to carry the heavy corpse to the incinerator. Wilbur pressed the button, and when the incinerator opened, both Antares and Wilbur spoke (albeit only one of their voices could be heard to outsiders).

    “Good riddance,” they said apathetically as the corpse was dropped into the fiery abyss below. The flames intensified for a second due to the literal added fuel to the fire. After the lid closed, Wilbur averted his eyes from the sight, staring off into space.

    “Okay, kid. I think I’m done,” Antares yawned. Wilbur didn’t respond. He could barely even think. He had just murdered someone… well, Antares did most of the work, but that doesn’t mean that Wilbur wasn’t a part of it. Wilbur, after standing stock still for a good minute, decided to silently go to his room, where he sat on his bed. He remained like this for the next ten minutes, completely unmoving, barely able to comprehend what he had done. He’d twitch and shuffle a little, but other than that Wilbur was motionless. You would’ve mistaken him for a lifelike doll if not for the light rise and fall of his chest. It was also very quiet in his room; so quiet you could hear a pin drop. However the almost peaceful silence was broken when Wilbur just barely heard the sound of the front door opening.

    "Wilbur, I'm home!" Susie excitedly bellowed, startling Wilbur. He frantically shuffled on his bed before pulling himself under the covers. A few seconds later, Susie quietly opened Wilbur's bedroom door, finding him pretending to be asleep. "I know your up, Wilbur," she giggled. Wilbur slowly got up, revealing his scarred and forlorn look. Susie noticed this and immediately started to become concerned. "Wilbur, what's wrong?"

    "I… I had a nightmare…" Wilbur muttered.

    "Do you remember anything about it?" Susie asked.

    "No…" Wilbur moaned. A white lie. To anybody but Wilbur, it was a simple white lie. He just had a scary nightmare where he witnessed someone being murdered. What Susie didn't know was that Wilbur actually lived the nightmare, and he was the cause of said murder.

    "It's okay, Wilbur. Try and forget it, it was just a dream," Susie said, trying to calm Wilbur down. "Hey, why don't watch some TV to get your mind off it?"

    "Okay," Wilbur responded quietly. Susie turned the TV on for him, and exited the room to do some work.

    Wilbur just watched TV. He didn't pay attention to anything that was happening. He was in a trance, still being shaken from the events that took place earlier. They kept playing in his mind over and over again. After a few hours of  Wilbur zoning, Susie entered the room.

    "Wilbur? I hate to interrupt l, but it's your bedtime," Susie said calmly. Wilbur shut the TV off and silently got into bed. Susie look at this worriedly; normally he was excited to go to bed, but now he just seemed… dead. She sighed and tucked Wilbur into bed. "Wilbur… did anything happen while I was gone that upset you, besides the nightmare?"

    Wilbur only blinked. He couldn't say it, lest Antares brutally murder him. After a few seconds of silence, Susie only shook her head. She decided not to delve into it. She pat Wilbur on the shoulder, told him goodnight and left the room.

    It goes without saying that Wilbur didn't get an inch of sleep that night…