"KP, you read me?"

"Just fine Ron, how much farther? I'm tired and it's hot."

She looked ahead, but her night vision goggles showed an apparently endless tunnel.

"Rufus isn't down at my end, he must be down at your end."

"If he is so smart, why can't he save his own rat butt?", she mumbled.

"What was that KP? You are cutting out."

"Can't Wade locate him?"

"Wade got an emergency call from Rescue, he's taking care of her right now?"

"Doesn't she have her boy friend Iron Man for that?"

"Uh, Rescue is pulling Iron Man out of a tight spot. Come on KP, just a little farther and we can get the heck out of here. We've completed the mission, the bad guys have been carted off in handcuffs and we just have to rescue Rufus and get out."

"Ron, it hurts…"

"I know honey, but the breakage has healed, you just have to get the supporting muscles loosened up and stronger and the pain will go away." Ron prayed that he was telling her the truth, that was what her surgeons had told him. Although the same surgeons said that they had never seen a person walk after that much pelvic and lower back damage.


"I promise. Tell you what, when we get out of this mess, I'll take you to lunch, my treat."

"Even if it isn't Bueno Nacho?"

"Even if it is a French restaurant that serves snails."

"OK, it's a deal. How much farther?"

"Only a quarter mile and then you should find Rufus. I'm back in the control room. It appears that once you are there, you can unlock an escape elevator and not walk back."

"Really? I could kiss you for that!"

"The Ron Man is all about those KP kisses!"

She trudged on in silence until the end of the tunnel was in sight. There was a disturbing red glow at the end. She walked until she came to a narrow pathway without handrails that crossed what looked like a lava stream.

"I can see you on camera now. There is a trap just ahead that will knock you into the lava. To avoid it, you will have to do a cartwheel and a tumbling dismount."

"A dismount? Off of what?" Dread filled her heart.

"There is a three-foot drop just after the end of the path. Piece of cake, just like a dismount from a balance beam. You will land on soft dirt."

"Ron! I haven't done that in years!"

"KP, trust me, your body will remember. I have your back. I won't let you fall."

There was some garbled voices protesting in the background, people shouting things like "Stop this! She can't do it! She'll get hurt again!"

Ron spoke softly, "KP, believe me, you can do this. Trust in the Ron Man. Trust in yourself."

"OK, tell me when." She started walking down the very narrow pathway.

"KP, start your run in three… two… one… NOW!"

Her body did remember. Two quick steps, a cartwheel, and then a bounce for altitude at the edge of the drop-off. For one brief shining moment in time, she was a young athlete again, not a broken woman approaching middle age. She was thinking that she lacked the altitude to be able to finish her third rotation in time to stick the landing when a strong hand pressed under her lower back giving her just the little extra boost she needed. At the same time, she felt a cold flash travel up her spine and down her legs. She landed in perfect balance, stretching her body fully upright with her arms in the air and sported a huge grin of triumph, just like the old days.

Snatching off her VR goggles, she stepped forward and grabbed the mole rat plushie. Turning, she held it out to Ron, "Mission Accomplished", she said with a grin. Ron turned his head to present his cheek and waggled his eyebrows. Laughing, she bent forward and gave him a peck on the cheek as people ran into the room.

"Mom, that was amazing!" A teenage girl who was so excited, she was bouncing up and down ran up and threw her arms around her.

"Mr Stoppable, that was outrageous! She could have been seriously injured! I can't believe you are a physical therapist! I'm filing a complaint."

Ron looked at the man who took a step back when Ron's eyes flashed blue. "Dude, do your worse. I swore years ago that I would always have my KP's back."

"But she is not your KP, she is my sister Kendra Parks!"

"Then be her brother and have her back," Ron quietly replied.

"So, who's up for snails?" Ron called out.

"How about Italian instead, I know this place that has great calamari. I need to shower and change first," Kendra replied.

"Is this a private party or can anyone drop in?" A redhead with green eyes and a naked mole rat on her shoulder appeared in the doorway. "Mmm Cheese Ravioli!" squeaked the mole rat. The teenaged girl's eyes grew round as she recognized the new visitors.

"Sure KP, let me check my appointments for rest of the day" Ron pulled up his schedule on his Kimmunicator, "Let's see, Kyla Pruitt at one, Kevin Pallet at two, Kelly Peterson at three and Katie Palmer at three-thirty and Fred Cook at four. How about we meet at the restaurant at six?"

Details for the restaurant were exchanged and when Kendra turned to leave, Ron stopped her by touching her on the shoulder. "No gymnastics without a good spotter, OK? A physical trainer to strengthen your back and hips would be a good idea. I know some."

Kendra smiled, "OK, no gymnastics without a good spotter. I'll be in touch about the trainer. Thanks, Ron."

Soon Ron and Kim were alone in the rehab room. "Any prospects?" Kim asked.

"Kendra's daughter Lizzy looks like a combat medic at heart. If she has half the talent that her mom has, teaching her mad Fu skills will be easy. But she lacks the meanness that you and Hanna have, she will never be a real fighter."

"Meanness?" Kim gave Ron a fake glare.

"You know what I mean. She oozes nurturing and protection, just like your mom. I say we offer her and her mom a trip to see Hana," Ron said.

Kim nodded, "Sounds good. The dojo is coming along nicely, I figure another three weeks here and it will be ready for me to move on."

"I'll give the people here my three week notice that I will be moving on. Got any ideas where we go next?" Ron asked.

"Not yet, Wade is looking for us." Kim replied, "Say, you've got an hour until your next appointment and Rufus hasn't had lunch. How about a quick run to Bueno Nacho?"

"Nacos!" squeaked Rufus.

"I love you both," Ron grinned as he took Kim's hand and pulled her towards the door.