“So the question,” Boxman said, voice faintly strained. “Is what exactly do. We. Do with her.”
“At this point? I say we toss her in the furnace and move on with our lives.” Venomous said darkly, crossing his arms as he examined the squirming kappa girl, hanging by her backpack from Boxman’s claws.
“Aaa!” she- sort of just said? Instead of actually yelling?
“PROFESSOR VENOMOUS. Absolutely not! ” Boxman hissed, whipping his head to the side to glare at him.
“Joking! I was joking. ...mostly a joke” Venomous said, holding his hands up. Alright killing a child WAS actually far, far more monstrous then he… liked to think he could ever possibly get. But frankly it’d taken an hour of chasing down the motion signal in the vents, closing off escape routes, and sending Fink in after her to corner the squirrely little programmer. And it was going to take an *hour* to wash all the dust and vent grime out of Fink’s hair. Again .
“Please, calm yourselves. While I understand this situation is most unusual, I can explain.” Dendy said, pretty calmly for someone wiggling like a kitten picked up by its scruff from the hands of the most dangerous villains in the state , if not arguably the world.
Venomous took a slow, deep breath, and steepled his fingers, closing his eyes. She was, he understood, a programmer of some kind. Maybe she’d… noticed. Something. Perhaps it was a secret mission, and they could get an edge by getting some information out of her. Hell- maybe the Bodega was playing an incredibly inane game of truth or dare. At this point he would accept any rational explanation.
“Alright. Fine.” he said calmly.
“This had BETTER BE GOOD!” Boxman growled, hefting Dendy further up into the air to glare at her. She bounced slightly in the straps of her backpack, and calmly reached up to adjust her goggles, taking her sweet time before she spoke.
“...K.O. is visiting his grandma today, so I am bored, and I wanted to see if I could.” she declared, smiling a tiny ‘v’ shape of apparent satisfaction.
“... what. ” Venomous said quietly, staring at the child.
“It was actually somewhat easier than I had anticipated. However, I was really hoping to be able to make my way to the central programming facilities. Perhaps then I could have studied the coding used for your robots.” Dendy added, tilting her head to one side and frowning with apparent disappointment.
“...Hah! Not bad, kid- you’ve got moxie! I like it.” Boxman said, rubbing his chin as he snickered at the little girl’s answer.
“ What?!” Venomous repeated, staring.
“Reminds me of myself as a wee lad… I’m afraid it’s against company policy to let people outside of the factory get a look at our codes or programs- industry espionage, you understand.” Boxmore said, somewhat apologetically.
“Ah. Yes, I assumed as such. That is why I crawled in through the vents. Also, I wanted to see if the robots had beds.” she said, nodding thoughtfully.
“They do, actually. It functions as a wireless charger." Boxman said brightly.
"I see... I suppose it would make sense they need to charge. And creating an extended 'sleep' function could allow them to properly sort memories from short term to long, an especially daunting task given the hive mind nature of their consciousness." Dendy concluded, vaguely kicking her legs in the air. Not strongly enough to escape, just as some kind of. Vague motion.
"Exactly! There's a few other reasons- a personalized resting space reinforces the personal ego. But that was pretty sharp. ...say! I know! Why not consider applying for the Boxmore Summer Internship program? Then we could get you set up with the right paperwork…” Boxman suggested, while Venomous stared at both of them.
“What- ABSOLUTELY NOT. She’s a CHILD! And a hero! SHE’S K.O.’S BEST FRIEND that’s his own actual age! Just- shove her in a box and send her BACK!” Venomous hissed, gesturing intently. Dendy seemed to be ignoring him, and had her eyes closed as she considered something. For a moment, it was silent.
“...would this be an unpaid internship?” Dendy asked.
“Well-” Boxman began, looking away guiltily.
“What?! No, of course not. We’re not monsters.” Venomous said, without thinking. He blinked and shrugged when Boxman looked sharply at him. Evil capitalism had its limits, and he had more than enough money to toss whatever random teen they eventually got in the job. Who was evil. And not literally part of the bodega-
“I would like to see an application form, please!” Dendy declared. Boxman brightened up again. Venomous… quietly pinched the bridge of his nose. Then he thought a moment.Then he lowered his hand, eyebrows perched almost all the way up to his widow’s peak.
“...Actually, you know what? I can work with this.” he said, shrugging loosely. He smiled a little at Boxman’s triumphant laughter before an insistent squeaky noise caught his ear. When he looked around he spotted Fink peeking into the room, insistently waving her rubber King Ghidorah bath toy at him, her fur still stained sooty grey.
"...Okay you better handle this. I have an urgent appointment." he said flatly.
"YEAH YOU DO! AND I WANNA USE MY BATH BOMBS!" Fink yelled.