A Smile

It had been a long, tiring few weeks for M42.  None of the Experiments showed him the slightest hint of respect (and Captain H42 was NO help in that regard!), plus 17-42 was still lagging very far behind the others

The pranks certainly didn’t help matters either.  Nearly losing the Dangerous Five Gun had scared M42 into sitting all the Experiments in a conference room and screaming at them until they were deaf, which in turn had led to MORE pranks.  Treadmills flinging him off, lights not turning on, the computers opening his doors and very inopportune moments.  At least the Experiments seemed to be leaving his gun alone – this was a treasured heirloom that he had received from his father.

“What the…?” M42 walked into his office.  All of his things had been glued to the roof!

“CAPTAIN!” He roared just as Suzie appeared.

“Oh dear…” Was all she could manage.  Being the Captain and second-in-command to M42, Suzie TRIED to get the Experiments to cooperate (after all, hadn’t she at least gotten the Major to ease off on the use of names? She still couldn’t get him to stop calling her H42 though) but they just wouldn’t budge.  Battle lines had been drawn and neither side wanted to give any ground.

“Which one was it?” M42 growled.  “HOW did they do it?”

“I honestly couldn’t tell you Sir.” Suzie stared at the ceiling.  “Then again, they all have extraordinary strength and ability.”

“Hmph!”  M42 stalked off angrily.  He’d tried to talk to C42 about this mess, but the Commander simply brushed him off.

“We can always get someone else to do your job y’know.” She’d said, stirring her tea in that annoying fashion.

In his entire career he’d never met a more infuriating group of people.

Suzie headed towards Training Ground 4 where she knew at least a few of the Experiments were working out.  There she found Alexis, Daniel and Tytus blasting targets.

“What did you guys do to the Major?” She asked, exasperated.

The three Experiments roared with laughter.

“How’d he take it?” Tytus asked.

“He’s pissed.” Was the reply.  “You guys really need to cut it out.”

“He needs to lighten up.” Alexis pointed out.

“You’re not helping him ‘lighten up’ when he’s constantly on guard waiting for you lot to strike!” Suzie began her lecture.

Meanwhile, the Major headed to the lunch room for something to eat.  He found 24-42 sitting there, happily munching on a sandwich while watching the football.

“You wouldn’t know anything about my office would you?” M42 scowled at her.

“Nope, the guys mentioned something about it but I wasn’t involved.  One of my cats was sick this morning.”  24-42 replied.  The cat in question was Boots, who had taken a liking to 24-42s sewing kit.  24-42 had spent the morning very carefully pulling threads out of the cats throat.

“Oh.”  He went to one of the vending machines and got himself a chocolate bar.

24-42 noticed something hanging off his belt.

“Your gun only has five chambers.”  She pointed to his gun.

“I asked my father about it once, he couldn’t tell me why either.”  M42 pulled out the gun and showed her.  “It’s called the Dangerous Five.”

24-42 looked at the handle, curious.  “Is it related to the Lucky Seven Gun that the Death Valley Gang use in Pleasantville?” She asked.

“I think so.”  M42 replied.  “You from Pleasantville?”

24-42 frowned.  “No.  You?”


The pair stared at each other for a bit, before returning to watching the game.

“What did they do to your office?” 24-42 asked.

“Stuck the furniture to the ceiling.” Was the sullen reply.

24-42 tried to hold back laughter. “How did they manage that?” She asked.

“I thought you might know.” M42 sulked. 24-42 stared at him for a bit.

“I’ve never seen you smile, you know that?” She said.

“Smile?  What’s there to smile about?  We’re supposed to be training an elite peacekeeping force.” M42 continued to sulk.

“It’s just that you’re a very nice-looking man who would look better if he smiled.” 24-42 smiled first.  “See?”

M42 glared at her.

“Hmmm…okay, maybe we can work on that.”  24-42 chuckled.  She looked at his arm.  “How’d you become a cyborg?”  She asked innocently.

Another glare.

“You’re not helping me like you very much.”  24-42 pouted.

“You’re not here to like me.” 

“Can’t you try to be cooperative?  You don’t have to tell us your life story (I’m pretty secretive myself) but you can be friendly!” 24-42 folded her arms.

M42 continued to glare.  “Fine.  You tell me one thing about your past and I’ll smile at you.”  He narrowed his eyes at her.

24-42 went slightly pink.

“I never had many friends.  Most people avoided me as much as they could.” 24-42 admitted.  “You won’t tell anyone will you?”


M42 smiled at her.

“HENNA CAN FLY?!” Suzie yelped.

“That’s how we did it.” Daniel grinned.  “I don’t know how she did it, but she can get up in the air with no problem.”

“Has this been recorded?!” Suzie asked.

“1A-42 has it on log apparently.” Alexis shrugged.

“WHY WEREN’T THE MAJOR AND I TOLD?!” Suzie yelled. “1A-42, get M42, 17-42 and 24-42 here NOW!”

“What’s the big deal?”  Tytus groaned as 1A-42 summoned the others over the loudspeaker.


“Hey guys, what’s going on?”  24-42 walked in with M42.

“What’s up with you two?” Alexis grinned at 24-42, who went bright red again.

“This had better be important.  Like how the hell this lot got my stuff up on the ceiling!”  M42 barked angrily.

“I can explain that!”

M42 and 24-42 spun around.  Henna was hovering in the air above them, looking very pleased with herself.

“Not so useless now am I?”  She sneered at M42, who pouted.

“How do you do it?” Asked 24-42, grinning.

“I dunno, I was doing hurdles by myself on Training Ground 1 and I was thinking about flying and up I went!  It’s almost as natural to me as walking now.”  Henna grinned.

24-42 closed her eyes and tried to lift herself up.  Within a few seconds she was up in the air as well.

“All right!” The pair high-fived.

Daniel got the hang of it soon after, but Alexis and Tytus struggled.  They still couldn’t fly by the end of the day.

“It’s nice to see you ahead in something for once 17-42.”  M42 said as the group walked back inside.  “Your hard work has paid off.”

Henna grinned all the way back to her lodgings.  

Inside, 24-42 was smiling too.  The haughty Major M42 wasn’t so bad after all.