Gyro Gearloose and Fenton Crackshell-Cabrera had their differences. They haven’t been working together for very long, but a lot had changed in that short amount of time. Going from a lead scientist and an intern desperate to please, to an unusual set of circumstances leading to an instant promotion that made them practically equals in terms of status, but saw each other as anything but. Ever since Fenton dawned the guise as Gizmoduck, Gyro has had to be more and more open to Fenton's input on ongoing projects at McDuck Enterprises, while Fenton had to balance his work at the lab with being on call as Duckburg’s hometown hero. It was tough for these two very different yet brilliant minds to get on the same wavelength.
Gizmoduck arrived back at McDuck Labs after another encounter with Dr. Atmozphere. Even if the villain was now in custody, the residual effects of his weather based devices were still looming over the city in the form of a nasty thunderstorm. Fenton figured he was going to have to drop off the suit for it’s scheduled tune ups, and run off to brave the storm to get home. Instead he found Gyro hunched over his workbench.
“Evening Dr. Gearloose.” Fenton greeted enthusiastically. Only getting a disinterested grunt in response.
“What a busy day.” Fenton continued as the Gizmosuit disassembled around him, his co worker’s clear disinterest not even phasing him. “Preparing for the grand opening of Mr. McDuck’s wing of the Duckburg Museum is tougher then I thought. Even if this was just the rehearsal for tomorrow’s ceremony, everyone on security was on high alert. But it’s an honor nonetheless. You should have seen some of these artifacts Mr. McDuck has gathered! Treasures from places I had never even heard of be-” Fenton halted his one sided conversation as he got closer to the work bench and saw what Gyro was working on.
It was tough to tell what the machinery was. It looked like some sort of scanner? Maybe a projector? It was clearly still a work in progress, as there were various smaller pieces laid out around the device waiting to be properly assembled. But what caught Fenton’s eyes was a large, purple geode contained in the center of the device. Something about it seemed, odd. Like some of the artifacts in the museum today. The lightning from the storm outside flashed and it made the peculiar gem shimmer more then Fenton suspected the average gem should.
“What’s that?” he asked, much to Gyro’s annoyance. He’d been doing a good job at ignoring his former intern’s prattling to complete his task, but it was getting more difficult.
“An invention commissioned by Mr. McDuck.” Gyro answered flatly, in the hopes it would end this as far as he was concerned, pointless conversation.
“Really? I don’t remember seeing a device like that on the production schedule.” Fenton commented curiously.
“Well maybe if you weren’t galavanting around in a suit of armor you would have.” Gyro patronized under his breath.
Fenton was taken aback by the comment. Not being able to tell if it’s low volume was from Gyro trying to keep it to himself or from his clear antipathy for his co worker. “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“Just that scientific work should be left to the real scientists. Not to people who fly around playing hero. Now if you’re done rambling on about who knows what, I’ve got a long night ahead of me getting some actual work done.” Gyro remarked as he walked away from the bench.
Fenton was usually an even tempered guy, but Gyro was really getting to him this time. He could usually tolerate the condescension but he was finding it difficult tonight. “Well a real scientist would know that you shouldn’t have a prototype plugged in while it’s still under construction.” Fenton retorted quietly, but loud enough to still be heard.
Fenton’s unusually abrasive response caught Gyro by surprise, but not enough to to make him back off. “I am not going to waste my time explaining my methods to someone who took one of my most brilliant inventions and turned it into a joke.”
“Oh really? Are those the same methods that make all of your inventions turn evil? Except for the one plugged into my brain?”
“At least if it turned evil, I’d be allowed to re-calibrate it so it would function properly. Instead of trusting a sophisticated machine to a dim witted, overly sentimental, unqualified intern who is too caught up in his own little world to properly think things through!”
“Unlike you? A self glorifying egomaniac who can’t look up from his own brilliance long enough to recognize other people’s opinions? Maybe if you did your work might be better for it!”
The tension between the duck and chicken was rising as the storm was getting worse. If their yelling wasn’t gaining any attention from the few employees who were still in the building at this hour, it’s because it was masked by the cracks of thunder and flashes of lightning that were getting more and more frequent. But the two employees were oblivious to their surroundings as their argument got more heated.
“You never listen to anyone’s contributions!” Fenton shouted “Not mine. Not Manny’s. I’m surprised Mr. McDuck was able to get you to work on an invention that didn’t come from you ‘mind numbing genius’” Fenton emphasizing Gyro’s own words with air quotes. “What does that even mean?! Working with you is like talking to a brick wall!”
“Try working with someone as intelligent as a brick wall and yet won’t shut up!” Gyro squawked.
The argument persisted as a bolt of lightning caused a power surge. The prototype Gyro was working on suddenly sparked to life. The geode inside radiated light from the inside and started vibrating. Clattering about and busting parts of the machine confining it. The geode hummed and briefly levitated before emitting a sparking wave of purple light. Just as the commotion gained Gyro and Fenton’s attention, it was too late. The wave hit them both at the same time. Sparks flying between them, both stiff as a board unable to move from the shock. As quickly as it happened, in a flash, it stopped. The geode dropped back to it’s resting place. Fenton and Gyro collapsed on the floor of the lab.
Fenton woke up with a terrible headache. As the world was coming back to him, he noticed something standing over him. He felt a light weight on his chest and something trying to shake him. As his vision cleared he could finally see the figure on top of him. It was Lil’ Bulb trying to rouse him. With a groan and a hand to his still aching head (his arms felt a bit weird too but he couldn’t figure out why), he sat up and addressed the little robot.
“Ugh. That may be the hardest hit I’ve ever taken outside the suit. What happened to Gyro? Is he okay?” he asked Lil’ Bulb. It was tough to decipher how the little robot felt at times, but at the moment he looked, confused by the question. Which left Fenton just as perplexed.
“What’s the matter Lil’ Bu-” Fenton began to ask and went to pat the robot assistant comfortingly, but as he did so his hand came into view, and that’s when he realized. That wasn’t his hand. He looked down and was shocked to not see his clothes. Or torso. Or legs.
Fenton yelped and practically leaped on his feet. Except they weren’t his feet. They were…. He looked into the window looking out into the ocean, and saw his reflection. Or rather, Gyro Gearloose’s reflection. He let out another cry and almost fell over on his longer legs. Fenton didn’t have long to process what just happened, because just as he realized what had occurred, he realized something else.
“If I’m in Gyro’s body, then that means…” As if on cue, he spotted his body on the floor as it began to stir. Gyro’s groans coming from Fenton’s mouth as his robot assistant looked frantically between them. Gyro was using Fenton’s hands to support himself as he sat up, and as he opened his eyes, the very first thing he saw were those hands. Gyro let out a similar startled cry and fell backwards. Panicking slightly until he spotted his body standing on the other side of the room.
Gyro twisted Fenton’s face into a look that was angrier then it had probably ever looked before, and asked in an almost growl “What? Happened?”
“This is terrible. No, disastrous. No, catastrophic!” Fenton uttered as he paced around in Gyro’s body as the morning light shined on the two distressed scientists.
“Would you shut up!” Gyro in Fenton’s body demanded. “We just have to figure out what happened and how to reverse it. As soon as conceivably possible. The less time I’m in your scrawny body the better.”
“I’m scrawny? You’re so thin you’re practically two dimensional. It’s really throwing off my center of gravity.”
“Why you-” Gyro’s response was cut off by Lil’ Bulb tapping his creator’s leg. “What?!” he asked more abrasively then was possibly warranted. The little robot simply pointed towards the remains of the prototype. Both scientists looks towards it, and then questionably at each other.
“The device?” Fenton asked
“Or the artifact itself.” Gyro replied, approaching the work bench and staring at the broken machine. “It’s possible the power surge irritated the geode’s already sensitive properties. Amplifying said properties, and well, made this happen.”
“Maybe that’s why one shouldn’t keep a volatile prototype plugged in during a lightning storm.” Fenton remarked under his breath. Still agitated at Gyro’s carelessness. Gyro simply glared at him.
“But this is implausible. Exchanging bodies with someone shouldn’t even be scientifically possible.”
“Neither should someone being able to steal and manipulate your shadow.” Gyro responded
Fenton paused at that response. “Fair point. So is this artifact magic then? What even is it?”
“I don’t really know. Mr. McDuck wouldn’t give me the specifics. He just asked for me to find a way to concentrate the light it projects.”
“Okay. So we just rebuild the device and reverse the effects!” Fenton concluded enthusiastically.
“Correction. I rebuild the device.” Gyro insisted condescendingly “It’s bad enough I have to work with your inferior eyes and dexterity.”
“’Inferior? I’m not the one who needs glasses. And strong ones at that.”
“You wouldn’t. Spectacles are a common sign of intelligence. Anyway this will get done much quicker without your chattering distracting me.”
Fenton let out a beleaguered sigh. “Fine.” he replied defeated. After not getting home after a long day and how heated things got last night, Fenton wanted this over with just as much as Gyro did. “I’ll just head back out to tend to my own business then. Blathering Blatherskite!”
Fenton called for the Gizmosuit, but nothing happened. He waited for a moment, thinking maybe it was a delayed reaction. Gyro looked over his shoulder at his former intern shouting the voice command again “Blathering Blatherskite!” But the suit still wasn’t responding.
That’s when a light bulb went off in Gyro’s head “I wonder…” Gyro muttered to himself as he was watching Fenton’s unsuccessful attempts to summon the Gizmosuit. The circumstances they were dealing with right now might be responsible for what was going on. If Fenton couldn’t summon the suit in his body… Gyro suddenly exclaimed “Blathering Blatherskite!”
The suit finally responded and assembled around it’s usual body, but with it’s unusual host. Gyro let out a triumphant “Ha! Finally someone qualified to operate this.” the inventor gloated as the suit’s usual pilot stood there slack-jawed in disbelief. “Now. Observe!” he announced as he thrust a fist into the air. Then he produced a screwdriver from one of the gloves’ fingers, and got back to working on the device.
“That’s what you’re going to do with the Gizmosuit?! Tinker with the invention?” Fenton asked somewhat flabbergasted.
“This is what the suit was originally designed for.Advanced scientific work.” Gyro tried to explain while one of the extra hands was working on reassembling the frame. “Maybe now that it has a brilliant operator, I can properly demonstrate how this sophisticated piece of machinery is supposed to-”
“Gizmoduck!” Gyro’s grandstanding was cut off as Scrooge McDuck’s voice startled both of them as it blasted over the intercom. “Where are ya?” the old duck asked over the face cam “The storm caused some damage that’s interfering with preparations at the museum. I need ya to get down here and help with the clean up so it’s done in time for the opening.”
“Oh please.” Gyro dismissed his boss’ instruction halfheartedly, only to get a commanding “That’s an order lad!” in response. Gyro deflated under the demanding Scottish tone.
“Good. And Gyro don’t forget. I need that new invention ready by tonight. Can ya manage?”
Fenton just stood there until he got elbowed in the arm by Gyro. Oh. Right. Scrooge was talking to him. “Uh yes Mr. McDuck. Rest assured that I’m very eager to get this device completed as soon as possible.” Fenton responded nervously. Earning a groan from Gyro that Scrooge didn’t appear to notice.
“That’s the spirit. And that’s enough standing around you two. Time is money. Off ya go.” Scrooge said as he ended the call. Leaving the two misplaced scientists in an even worse dilemma then they were already in.
Fenton was the first to speak up. “Well clearly we’re not going to get the work we need to do done ourselves. So we’ll just have to do each others jobs. You go take care of Gizmoduck’s work. I’ll stay here and finish fixing the machine. Once it’s complete we’ll switch back before anyone realizes what happened. Especially Mr. McDuck.”
Even if the Gizmosuit visor was covering his swapped face, Gyro displeasure at having to fly around doing Fenton’s silly work was clear as day. But sitting here debating the problem wasn’t getting them anywhere, and he’d rather be Gizmoduck for the day then risk permanently losing his job. After some thought Gyro let out a groan and agreed. “Very well. But there better not be one screw out of place when I get back!” Gyro warned, emphasized by jabbing the Gizmosuit’s finger at Fenton’s, or rather his, chest. This was getting confusing.
“Not to worry Dr. Gearloose. Despite what you might think I am more then capable of running things here.”
With a non visible but evident eye roll, Gyro flew off, or at least tried to. As he went up a chute to exit the lab he fell back down, covered in grime and debris. “Eugh! Why is this so filthy?!”
“Because that’s the garbage chute. The hatch that leads outside is 60 degrees from where your standing.” Fenton pointed towards the correct exit.
“I knew that!” Gyro quickly flew out of the lab. Leaving only Fenton, Lil’ Bulb, a puff of smoke from the Gizmosuit, and the mysterious object in the underwater laboratory.
“Right. All I have to do is fully reconstruct a device that harnesses the power of a magical object that I have no information on what it is or how it functions. How hard could it be?”
Wow. There was quite a response to this premise. Thank so much everyone. I really hope you enjoy where this is going. For the record though, I know glasses aren't actually a sign of intelligence (and I'm sure Gyro would too) but I still felt it was a decent ego boost for Gyro rather then something he genuinely believes. Hope you enjoyed this and look forward to what's coming next!
Gyro didn’t think much of the flight over Duckburg. Just his frustration at having to leave his lab and his work in the hands of his former intern. But he took comfort in the fact that this work should be quick enough to deal with. Especially with his genius behind the wheel. Let the suit do most of the work, get through the praise as quickly a possible, and head back before he’s missed.
As he got closer to the museum, he got a better look at the scene. A mix of planners preparing for the event, police clearing the area, and press covering both the storm damage and the preparations for the official opening of Mr. McDuck’s wing of the museum. On the way down he noticed a knocked down tree blocking one of the roads to get in. That must be what they called him in for.
Gyro had barely touched the ground when a man with a clipboard who he assumed was the organizer ran up to him. “Ah Gizmoduck. Perfect timing. We could really use your assistance with-”
“I already saw the problem, I’ll have it taken care of momentarily.” Gyro responded abruptly. Rolling away as the organizer still had his mouth hanging open with an incomplete request.
Gyro turned the corner and examined the fallen tree Not paying any mind to the clean up crew around him. “Alright. Should be easy enough to lift. But it’s too tall to move anywhere nearby.” Gyro thought out loud “Activate Shoulder Blades!” he commanded as the suit produced a saw blade from each shoulder. With a smirk of satisfaction, he proceeded to intricately cut the tree trunk into equal, easier to dispose of pieces. After about 20 minutes, he was pleased with his work and retracted the blades.
“Simple enough with the proper methods. Now to gather up the debris.”
“Uhh Gizmoduck?” Gyro was brought out of his thoughts by the organizer again. Now standing by his side. “We appreciate the time you took to assist here, but the clean up crew can take it from here.”
“But I can do it more efficiently.”
“I don’t doubt it.” the organizer replied dryly “but we have a much more pressing matter. The storm damaged the generators in the building and the service elevator is stuck with people inside.”
“What?! Why didn’t you say something?” Gyro asked dumbfounded.
“I’ve tried. For the last 15 minutes.”
Thankfully Gyro’s surprised and somewhat embarrassed expression couldn’t be seen under the helmet. “Very well.” he finally said with a scoff “I’ll tend to that as well.”
“Thank you Gizmoduck. We are most grateful for your-”
“Yeah yeah yeah.” Gyro once again rolled off, dismissing his words. Leaving the organizer momentarily beleaguered, which quickly washed away as he went back to answering several questions about the preparations.
“Just one last adjustment aaaand…” Fenton said to himself as he tightened a bolt on the circular frame of the device. All of the pieces clicked together with pegs sticking to the geode. “There! Nothing to it.”
Fenton’s pride was cut short when the pegs and frame collapsed under the weight of the geode. Fenton bumped his head on the work station in frustration. With a sigh he regrouped himself. “No matter. First you don’t succeed, just make the proper adjustments until you get the desired result.”
Manny, who arrived earlier and had been filled in on the situation, clopped asking if the base was damaged when the geode acted up.
“Hm. Possibly. I didn’t get that good of a look at this before the accident, so I could have easily missed that. Would you get some replacement parts?” he politely asked the man-horse, who did a clop of compliance and went off to do as he was asked.
“There we go. Taking input from others isn’t so hard now is it?” he asked Lil’ Bulb rhetorically. When Manny returned with the new parts, Fenton went straight to work. Building the frame exactly to Dr. Gearloose’s specifications. Satisfied with the results, Fenton placed the geode back into the device, where it sat perfectly in it’s place.
“Yes! Easy as high school calculus. And Dr. Gearloose thought I couldn’t manage this. All we have to do to switch back now is,” Fenton’s self praise was cut off as he took another look at the device “is..” Fenton continued examining the machine in front of him. It was complete according to Dr. Gearloose’s plans, but there didn’t seem to be any way to concentrate the geode’s properties, or even turn the device on. That’s when Fenton remembered some things Gyro had said.
That he had a long night ahead of him. That Mr. McDuck had asked him to build a device that could contain the geode’s light, and yet that same geode was nowhere near contained, since it was able to cause this whole mess in the first place. That’s when Fenton realized.
“He didn’t finish the invention’s schematics. We’re right back where we started.” Fenton uttered somewhat crestfallen as Manny let out a single clop that he’s glad his co-worker wasn’t capable of saying out loud.
“Right then. I’ve been in worse predicaments with less resources. At least this time the whole town isn’t hanging in the balance. I just have to, figure out what this artifacts properties are and how to contain them. No sweat. I can do this.” Fenton pumped himself up confidently as he grabbed a lab coat and a pair of work goggles. Leaning on the bench, he started into the faint shimmer of the foreign object that got him into this mess. “I can do this.” he whispered to himself, a bit less sure then he was before.
Gyro tried reconnecting the wiring in the panel of the elevator’s controls, but he had trouble reaching some sections. Aggravated and muttering under his breath, he uses one of the Gizmosuit’s extra hands to reach the last compartment that needed adjustment. He managed to repair the circuitry, but not without sending a shock through his system.
The elevator doors opened as he was patting down the smoking cracks of the suit. His attention turned to the worried passengers. Some were a bit fearful of stepping out when the elevator wasn’t completely at it’s stop, while others were blocked by those people from exiting at all.
“Alright everybody out.” Gyro instructed, but didn’t seem to be getting through to them. “It’s perfectly safe, I saw to the repairs myself. Just step this way.” Gyro grabbed the edge of the elevator and made a path of sorts with the armor on his back. His assurance seemed to convince the more nervous of the passengers, and they all stepped out. “Single file. There we go.” Gyro led them all out, none of them saying a word and some running out or annoyed at the inconvenience.
“’Bout time. Stuck in there for over an hour. I’ve got places to be.” he heard one of the last passengers complain.
“Ingrates.” Gyro uttered frustratingly under his breath. Starting to ramble to himself once he was alone. “I go to all this trouble to rewire this thing and don’t even get to say so much as a “You’re Welcome’.” Gyro took a deep breath “Whatever. I should probably check the rest of the electrical system just to be safe. A long range scan of a building like this shouldn’t take too long, so long as there aren’t further-”
“-interruptions.” Gyro finished his thought defeated as he was called away from work yet again. It was one of the police officers saying that they were still clearing the roads, but the catering truck had to get through so the food could be prepared and ready to go by tonight. With agitated resignation, Gyro silently agreed and proceeded to move the truck by hand to a parking spot by the building. After assisting in unloading the food into the kitchen, they thanked the misplaced scientist turned hero as he went back to the entrance of the museum.
“Well this has been a monotonous day. At least now I have a moment to myself to check in on the la-” before he can activate the suit’s communicator, his senses are bombarded by bright flashed and various voices talking over each other.
“Gizmoduck, do you have any comment on the after effects of your last battle with Dr. Atmozphere?”
“Mr. Gizmoduck? Is it true you were dating a staff member at Waddle?”
“How do you feel about how much more frequent the memes surrounding you have gotten despite your approval rating rising in the public eye?”
This was insane. How was anyone supposed to get anything important done with people running around from all over demanding Gizmoduck’s attention. Gyro’s aggravation had been rising all day. He just wanted to be left alone to work. He let out a frustrated scream and without another word, flew straight up into the sky. Leaving the reporters and early attendants in a cloud of rocket exhaust. Wondering what had gotten into the hero.
Fenton wasn’t getting anywhere. He couldn’t test how well the light the geode omits was contained without causing it, but each attempt at containment agitated the geode’s sensitive properties. Leading to a couple of times Fenton had to rebuild sections of the frame due to, explosions.
It’s possible this would be solved if the geode was properly examined, but Fenton didn’t have time to run such elaborate tests. And even if he did he wouldn’t even know where to start. Magic wasn’t exactly his area of expertise. It was already noon. He had less then 9 hours to figure this out and switch him and Gyro back. So he was just running scenarios and building prototypes to see what stuck. This approach hadn’t been working up to that point, but Fenton didn’t know what else to do. As Gizmoduck he had to think on his feet and sprint into action with the quickest solution, and it worked. Patience and careful experimentation may have been essential in science, but he had been able to jump into action and bend those rules when it counted. What wasn’t he getting here?
After putting out the latest fire, he looked at the white board behind him, filled with failed construction plans and hypotheses on how to concentrate the geode’s delicate power. Brushing the soot off his borrowed face, he sat there feeling like he was out of options, yet he was sitting there with the clock ticking urgently but oh so slowly. Almost mocking him with how long he had, yet he felt like he tried everything to make this work.
“Any ideas?” he quietly but desperately asked his two mute lab partners. Both only shrugging in response. Fenton let out a tired groan, running his not hand through his not hair. At this rate it might be his, forever.
Fenton attached a dome he had constructed onto the frame. Thinking he finally found a solution that would fix everything. If the geode’s light could be completely contained, it should be simple enough to modify the dome when the time came to properly concentrate and project the mystical light it omitted.
With bated breath, Fenton switched on the dome. Able to produce low level LED light evenly around the circumference it was placed over. And it seemed to be working. From the outside Fenton could see the light inside become a mix of the LED’s faint blue and the geode’s signature purple.
“Ha ha! Success!” Fenton cheered to himself with great relief. “Now to just figure out how to add the proper modifications to-” before Fenton could process his next course of action, the dome began to shimmer even brighter, the geode vibrating underneath it’s containment causing the entire device to shake. Before Fenton could jump to turn it off, the geode’s power burst straight up, knocking the newly constructed dome into the ceiling above. The magic ceased once the artifact was freed from it’s confinement, the object clattering back down onto a slightly dented frame. Fenton jumped out of the way as the dome came crashing back to the ground right at his feet.
“Oh come on!” Fenton exclaimed, letting all of his aggravation over the last several hours of failed experiments out.
Once he let it out, the tense feeling inside started to drain from him. Fenton dropped to his knees in front of the cracked dome. Staring at the reflection of the head inventor who should be in charge of fixing all of this. Then again he caused all of this in the first place. But with each failed attempt to fix all of this, Fenton felt more and more discouraged. Feeling the weight of both his and Gyro’s jobs and lives on the line. This was all on him.
“What am I not seeing here? There has to be a solution. There always is. Think Fenton. Think!” Fenton tried to pump himself up, knocking his palms against his skull. But as he was trying to force a solution out of his head, the elevator doors opened, and Scrooge McDuck walked out.
“Having difficulties with the project there lad?” Scrooge asked casually, making his presence known to Fenton, who practically leaped to his feet at his boss’ voice.
“Mr. McDuck! Oh, no. Not at all.” he responded, trying to compose himself and act cool. “Just some, standard tests to make sure it’s performing flawlessly.” Fenton tried to assure Scrooge as he walked up the steps to the main work station.
Scrooge took a glance at the damage caused from the last experiment. “Looks like you’ve still got a few flaws to work out here.” he remarked, side eyeing the swapped scientist.
“Perhaps a couple, but nothing that can’t be adjusted in time, I assure you sir.” Fenton replied, trying to keep an even tone and a straight face so he wouldn’t raise suspicion.
“Well, you’ve certainly got your work cut out for ya, don’t you? Fenton?”
Fenton’s eyes went wide like a deer in headlights, the sweat on his brow increasing in volume at the use of his name. Manny just as shocked clopped ‘Busted’ from the other side of the lab. Scrooge was just staring at him from over his shoulder still, so Fenton tried to keep up the ruse.
“Whaaaaat?” Fenton drew out totally not suspiciously. “I- I ha- have no idea what you’re talking about Mr. McDuck. How could you mistake me for that inferior co-worker of mine? Who some might say I take for granted and could maybe use a little vacation time every now and then to recharge the old batteries.”
Scrooge turned and glared at Fenton. Arms crossed and with a very unamused look. “You and Gyro switched bodies didn’t you?”
“A little.” Fenton answered weakly. “But how did you know?”
“Lad, please. I know a body swap when I see one. It was plain as day after that call this morning.” Scrooge admitted “Not to mention none of Gizmoduck’s actions today seemed like you. Have you not seen the news?” Scrooge asked after the surprised look he got from Fenton at the mention of Gizmoduck. Fenton pulled out his phone to see news and social media posts about how Gizmoduck was losing his marbles. Yelling at reporters and being short tempered while on duty.
If Fenton wasn’t worn out by the day’s events before, he certainly was now. “Great. Just great. If I can even get back into my own body, who knows what people are going to think of Gizmoduck by then? Just when I thought this day couldn’t get any better.” Fenton dropped into a chair, his head in his hands, looking ashamed and frustrated over the events of the last several minutes.
“You ehh, doing alright there?” Scrooge asked
“That depends. Does Dr. Gearloose tend to get migraines?”
“Judging from his medical records at least twice a day.”
“Then I guess I’m alright.” Fenton weakly replied, rubbing his temples. “I’m starting to understand the irritability.” he said with a groan.
“Yes a situation like this can certainly give one a heaping helping of perspective. So. What contraption of Gyro’s got you both into this mess?”
“Nothing!” Fenton said abruptly, quicker to rush to his co worker's defense then he expected. “Well, nothing directly anyway, it was that that caused this. All on it’s own.” he explained pointing towards the geode. Scrooge’s eyes grew slightly larger in realization at Fenton’s explanation.
“That’s what did this to you two?”
“Yes. We’re still not quite sure how though.”
Scrooge leaned closer to the supernatural stone. The very faint purple glow reflecting off of the pince nez glasses that rested on his beak. “I knew the stone had telepathic abilities. But, I had no idea it was capable of completely exchanging the minds of two individuals.”
“What is this anyway? Dr. Gearloose said you didn’t tell him much of anything about it?” Fenton asked, rising from his chair to step closer to his boss.
“Well since you look like you’ve gotten in quite the predicament, I’ll elaborate a bit more. The Mind Mineral is a rare mystical gem. Legend has it that when two people made contact with the geode, it would show them the other person’s thoughts. Some civilizations used them for spiritual understanding of their fellow man. Much of it has been lost to the sands of time. Until I dug this hunk of rock out of my garage.”
“Fascinating” Fenton commented almost in a whisper. In awe of the geode’s true power as it glowed in the faint light of the lab. “But why didn’t you just tell Gyro all of this in the first place?”
“Well, you know Gyro. I was concerned that if he knew what the geode was capable of, my scheming, self righteous scientist might try to, experiment with it’s delicate properties.” Scrooge explained.
Fenton understood perfectly. He could only imagine what Gyro would have done with this rock if he learned it could read minds. Though after this experience, it might not sound as appealing as it would have.
“I just told Gyro what I thought he needed to know in order to modify the geode’s powers for my own purposes. Having it be the crown jewel of the opening of the Scrooge McDuck wing of Duckburg Museum!” Scrooge puffed out his chest with pride, but quickly deflated and rubbed his neck in embarrassment as his blunder. “Though I suppose my withholding information did more harm then good.”
“It’s not your fault sir.” Fenton quietly assured, in an almost defeated tone. “If Dr. Gearloose and I weren’t arguing when the device overloaded, this incident might not have occurred and gotten so out of hand.” Fenton sat back down in the chair. Staring at the machine he’d failed to fix for the last several hours.
“Maybe Gyro was right. I thought he was just being his usual stubborn, condescending self. But if I was as good a scientist as I think I am, I would have figured this out by now. What am I doing wrong?”
Scrooge leaned against the table glancing at the young duck who looked so close to giving up. “You’re not used to working this way is what it is. Between your research here and your work as Gizmoduck, you’ve got a lot of responsibilities lad. Gyro really only has one. And despite some, setbacks, he’s brilliant at what he does. If given the time.”
“So why can’t I just, adapt like I do out in the field? I’ve gotten out of worse jams before, but something about sitting here with nothing to show for all of my work but failure after failure is getting to me.”
“And ya think it doesn’t get to him? I’ve known Gyro a long time, and as brilliant as he is, he can also be his own worst enemy. He may only have one job, but it’s just as demanding as your work. And that kind of pressure would get to anyone.”
“I never thought of it that way.”
“Y’know that’s why you and Manny were hired in the first place. As much as Gyro insists he can handle everything down here himself, when you’ve been around as much as I have, ya learn that no one truly accomplishes anything alone. But Gyro’s always trying to prove how brilliant he can be. Even when he doesn’t need to.”
Scrooge had a point. Despite his self-aggrandizing and bad attitude, if nothing else, Gyro believed in his work. And Fenton could certainly understand wanting to prove yourself despite the odds and setbacks. He just never realized Gyro felt that way too.
“So what do I do?” Fenton finally asked.
“You’re getting too caught up in your own head.” Scrooge said pointing at his own head, but stopped when he got a look from Fenton. “Though that may be poor phrasing in this situation. Look, you’ve got determination lad, and you can think outside the box. Gyro may have made that suit of armor, but you made it Gizmoduck.”
Scrooge stood straight and looked the swapped scientist right in the eye. “So do what Gyro does. Science. Careful calculated science. Take that resourcefulness of yours, and apply it carefully and meticulously to the best method of completing this contraption you can conjure.” he proclaimed as he slammed his hand on the workbench, causing Fenton to back out of his seat. “I still need this completed by tonight. Can you do it?” Scrooge asked with his more typical serious tone pointing his cane right at Fenton.
Fenton looked over at his failed prototype plans, and then over at the work in progress. Entranced and almost challenged by the geode that didn’t seem as mysterious as it did a few minutes ago. He looked the old duck straight in the eye and with the utmost determination replied “Yes sir.”
Scrooge couldn’t help but grin at the reignited spark in his employee’s eyes. “Excellent. I’ll see you tonight then.” Scrooge took his leave. Fenton not taking his eyes off him until the elevator doors closed.
Fenton once again stared at all of the scribbles and doodles of various attempts at a completed device to contain the geode’s properties. He grabbed the dry eraser and wiped it all off. Apart from the rough draft of his latest plan. He had to focus all of his energy on one solution, and he may have already found it. It may just require some proper tuning.
“Alright.” he said to himself as he turned to find the slightly damaged dome from his last failed experiment. He bent down to pick it up and examine what needed to be repaired and modified.
“Let’s get to work.”
I don't seem to get tired of Scrooge offering Fenton advice. I don't know why because it's never ever happened in the show, but something about it just works for me. I originally intended to change perspectives like I did in the last chapter, but Fenton's side turned out to be so long, including Gyro's might have resulted in a 4000 word chapter. So I decided to split them up. Hope you enjoyed this chapter and next time we'll be getting back to Gyro, so look forward to that.
Gyro was panting from the exhaustion and agitation he felt at trying to get away from all of those people demanding his assistance and attention. There were still spots in front of his eyes from the flashes of cameras from those publicity hounds. Ducked in some back alley a few blocks away from the museum, he caught his breath and stuffed the recently disassembled Gizmosuit into Fenton’s smelly duffle bag. That was enough Gizmoduck for one lifetime. He’d done more then enough as far as he was concerned. “If Fenton wants to waste his time tending to ungrateful citizens day in and day out, that’s his business. But I’m done. I’m going back to the Money Bin where I be-”
“Hey Fenton!” a voice startled Gyro and blocked his way out of the alley. It was one of Mr. McDuck’s nephews. The red one.
“Oh will this day never end?” Gyro groaned with his face in his hand. Neither of which were currently his he had to keep reminding himself. “What are you doing here kid?”
“Well I was on my way to the museum when I saw you back here. So I thought I’d say hi and see how you’re doing.” Huey replied
“Look I really don’t have time for this. So if you’ll just let me pass-”
“Ohh. Another busy day huh?”
“You have no idea.” Gyro begrudgingly grabs the bag again and tries to leave, when something about what Huey said suddenly sunk in. “What do you mean ‘another busy day’?” he turned and asked the duckling.
“It’s alright. I figured that’s what was going on. I know that ever since Gizmoduck’s become more loved by the people, you’ve got days that can be sort of overwhelming. Not to mention all of the criminals who you have to face on a daily basis. Especially the really crazy ones. I’ve always found it to be both fun and scary. Like we’re living in a TV show!”
Gyro went more deep in thought as Huey rambled on, but he was still aware of what he was saying, and how much of it Gyro somehow didn’t know. Was this not just because of the event at the museum? Were days always like this for Fenton? He always assumed all the times the suit got damaged was just due to Fenton’s own incompetence. But he supposed the suit was never designed for this kind of work in the first place. He tried to squash the thought as soon as he conceived it, but something about that kind of, dedication just stuck to him.
“Yeah. Sometimes I don’t even know why I do this.” he muttered almost bitterly, looking at the reflection of the man who usually flew around playing hero in the Gizmosuit’s visor.
“Hey, it’s okay to be worn out by everything you have to do. Even if it’s for a good cause.” Huey said comfortingly, putting a hand on the swapped scientist’s shoulder, which Gyro found oddly reassuring. But it didn’t erase his irritation.
“But what is it about all of this? Why do so many people run around wanting the assistance of, Gizmoduck?” Gyro asked himself mostly, but still out loud. A bit of irritation in the tone he spoke that silly alter ego’s name. Slightly in disbelief he was having any sort of conversation like this with a child.
“Well, they trust you. You're always there for people, even at the cost of your own time and projects. They just want to show how much they love and appreciate what you do for them. I know I do.”
“Oh. Sure.” Gyro scoffed dismissively “Impatient during rescues. Ungrateful for efficient work. Being crowded by news hounds for the simplest of tasks.” he listed off moving away from Huey and pacing around the alley. “What kind of appreciation is that?” he inquired with a huff and crossed arms.
“Come on. You’ve had days like this before. Where it seems like all of your efforts are going unnoticed.”
“I remember when you were frustrated at how much you had to cut back your hours at the lab to keep up with all of the public appearance requests Gizmoduck was getting.”
“I was?” Gyro was asking with more disbelief then before. Gyro always thought Fenton put his work at the lab second. That he didn’t value real science as much as being a glory hog with something he didn’t even create.
“But you’ve worked hard to get people to admire Gizmoduck as their protector. And all of that hard work is paying off.”
“But, that doesn’t make any sense. If he- er, I” Gyro corrected with a stutter, reminding himself he wasn’t talking to himself like he usually does. “If I love my scientific work as much as I say, why do I insist time and time again on putting all this Gizmo stuff first?”
What he didn’t expect was Huey’s response. Saying with the utmost sincerity “Because that’s what heroes do.”
Gyro still couldn’t say he understood, but something about it being put that way made him pause. A hero? Gyro always assumed Fenton was doing all of this for some sort of accolade and praise. He certainly got more then enough of it lately. But if there were times where Fenton was exhausted from it all, what kept him coming back out in this synthetic alloy armor? What is it about Gizmoduck that Fenton feels is so important?
As if answering his silent inquiry, Gyro and Huey heard a call for help down the street. They both ran to the end of the alley to investigate. From where they were standing they could get a better look at a section of the adjacent park that would be a blind spot to most passersby. The ideal place for a muscular, seedy figure to try and rob what appeared to be a couple. They couldn’t tell if he had a weapon, but the victims seemed too afraid to fight back as the robber forced them to empty their pockets.
Maybe it was some sort of effect inside Fenton’s muscles that were used to springing into action, or maybe it was an instinct inside Gyro he’d never touched before, but something inside him sparked at the sight of this delinquent purloining these innocent people.
“Fenton we should-” Huey started to say before he was interrupted by the call of “Blathering Blatherskite!” next to him and a corresponding rush of wind.
Gyro flew off as soon as the suit clicked into place around his former intern’s body. Not taking his eyes off the criminals as if he was a missile honed in on a target. He might as well have been as he charged into the robber at full force. Knocking him off his feet and sending him flying into a nearby bush.
The Gizmosuit’s wheel skid onto the grass as the robber crashed. Gyro made sure to place himself between the couple and the criminal before he recovered from the blow, and Gyro didn’t give him much of a chance to do so as he used the Extend-o Arm to grab the robber by his ankle and retracted the arm. Dangling him upside down in front of the group. Without a word he shook the criminal from where he held him up and watched as the belongings and money he stole fell out of his pockets.
Still holding onto the criminal, Gyro backed away from the pile of stolen goods that was now laying on the grass. “Is that everything?” he asked the couple. The young man of the group kneeled down to check, and gave him a meek nod. “Good.” Gyro replied to the gesture. The young woman joined him to gather their things. Gyro had to admit, he felt a hint of satisfaction at the assurance that their stolen goods were in one peace.
“Over here officer.” Gyro heard the voice of the young duckling from behind. He was directing a police officer to where Gizmoduck had captured the robber.
“Thank you Gizmoduck. We’ll take it from here.” the officer said, waving her partner over to apprehend the robber. Gyro let him go so the cops could cuff him, but hovered close by until he was secured so he wouldn’t try anything.
When the robber was taken away, Gyro let out a long, exhausted sigh. He could feel himself deflate in the Gizmosuit which was feeling much heavier. That was certainly a rush, but it was over. He was about to return to what he was doing before and make his way back to the Money Bin, when the young woman stopped him.
Gyro let out another groan. He just wanted to get out of here “What is it?”
“I, that is, we” the young man stepped next to her and took her hand “just wanted to thank you for your help.”
“Oh.” Gyro replied in disbelief of the genuine gratitude he was hearing “It umm, it was nothing really.”
“It was everything to us.” the young man corrected “We’re traveling, so that was everything we had with us that that horrible man almost got away with.”
“If it hadn’t been for you, we’d have nothing right now.” the woman added “Duckburg is lucky to have you.”
To say Gyro was taken aback by their sincerity would be an understatement. If he hadn’t swooped in when he did, that robber would have gotten away with everything these two had to their names. They could have even been hurt. But they weren’t. They were in one peace. Together, and it was all thanks to him. No. It was all thanks to Gizmoduck.
“Uhh, you’re welcome.” Gyro finally replied.
“Well we won’t keep you. We should get going too.” the young man said.
“Thank you again!” the young woman called out as they walked off. Leaving Gyro frozen in place.
“See?” he heard Huey say, suddenly at his side, but Gyro still didn’t move. “Look at all the good you do. It’s still worth it for that. Isn’t it?”
Gyro started to understand why Fenton valued making Gizmoduck a hero so much. In a way he was doing what Gyro always wanted. Using science and technology to change people’s lives. It may not be the way Gyro envisioned it when he first conceived the armor, but after all of this, he couldn’t deny it was an effective way to get results.
“I suppose it is.”
“Everything seems to be up and running smoothly.” Scrooge commented looking around the new Adventurer’s Wing of the museum. Artifacts and relics from all over the globe displayed proudly and informatively. “The guests will be here in a couple of hours with the press. Make sure the area where the presentation is being held is in ship shape for the opening.” he instructed.
“Yes sir Mr McDuck.” the organizer complied as he ran off to see to the last minute preparations. Scrooge stood there for a moment reminiscing on some of the artifacts, and still having his swapped scientists on his mind. He hadn’t seen Gizmoduck around since he arrived. What was Gyro getting himself up to in that contraption?
Before he could ponder that any further, someone grabbed him from behind. “What in blazes?!” He instantly struggled, but there was a sort of weight to the grip on him that made it more difficult.
“You’re presentation will have to wait McDuck.” the scoundrel who was holding him captive growled.Something about the voice was, annoyingly familiar. “For tonight, all of Duckburg will witness a feat unlike any other!” he dramatically proclaimed, emitting an bright yet eerie light.
Scrooge then realized what was holding him down so effectively. A silver gauntlet that covered the mysterious miscreant’s left hand and half his arm. Scrooge knew that gauntlet. It was one of the exhibits. And if he had that, then with the right incantation, that means he could…
An entity that barely had a form, made up of only smoke and shadow, suddenly enveloped the museum wing.
“From the true master of the arcane! Black Arts Beagle!”
Now this was way easier then the last chapter! I don't know if anyone else realizes this, but writing a fic like this made me realize that Gyro hasn't really had a focused episode yet. He's been in quite a few and contributed to the conflict, but it terms of a story with his own conflict and character development, there hasn't really been anything yet. But with Fenton's daily struggles, that was way easier. Especially with his latest episode giving me even more to work with.
And because this is Ducktales, it's not just the understanding these two get where it ends. We have to fight a giant thing first. Which we'll go into next time. Hope you enjoyed, thanks so much for all the comments, and look forward to what's coming next