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Title: Project Nexus
Chapter: Not So Happy Days
Rating: T
Fandom: TGWTG/ Spoony Experiment
Character(s): Nostalgia Critic, Nostalgia Chick, MarzGurl, Spoony, Linkara, Doctor Tease , Doctor Insano, Professor Celluloid, Malachite, Bennett The Sage
Pairing(s): None
Warnings: AU. mild language, violence.

Disclaimer:Any recognizable characters that appear in this fic are property of their respective contributors at ThatGuyWithTheGlasses , therefore I do not own them, nor do I intend any disrespect toward either the character or the contributor portraying them. Also any concepts/ideas borrowed from Power Rangers/Super Sentai are property of Saban and Toei, respectively. Any other properties mentioned/used are also property of their respective owners.


*Special Note: This chapter marks the beginning of this story being co-written with EsaEnai of Fanfiction.Net,I strongly encourage you to check out her work, especially if you are a Lord of the Rings or Doctor Who fan.

Later that night, the Nexus base was almost totally quiet. Faint echoes of mechanical whirs broke the silence every now and again, but not a peep was heard otherwise. The team had fallen into uneasy sleep, bundled up underneath mountains of blankets each.

Linkara watched his breath curl away from him as vapor, slicing through the chilly air. Insano had chewed him out for almost half an hour after they had returned, angry to the bone. He’d had to channel several lesser programs into the transporting beam, and even then the amount of energy it required meant they were without a few essentials- notably, heat. The base was freezing.

The return to the base had been entirely depressing. Spoony and Marz had been rushed to the medical bay almost as soon as their feet hit the ground, and no one had seen them all night. This meant that the other three were alone. They’d gathered in the kitchen, brewing pot after pot of coffee in an attempt to stay awake and wait for their friends to come back. That was the excuse, anyway.

They all knew the real reason they didn’t want to sleep; their dreams would all the same. Sage and the General, winking out of existence. They had failed, and none of them could wrap their heads around it. They lost. They were the good guys! Good guys couldn’t lose! They never did in the movies, or even on Power Rangers.

Chick had sat with her arms folded on the table, head resting on them. Every now and then she’d shift her position a bit, but remained silent up until she gave in to sleep and vanished. The Critic had disappeared after an hour of staring into space, and Linkara thought he was still whaling away at practice dummies in the training room.

So, he was the only one left, staring at his fifth (or sixth) cup of coffee, bundled up in a coat, hat, and blanket. Eventually, he spoke aloud for the first time in hours. “Activate Nimue AI.”

There was a soft mechanical whir, and then: “This unit is now online, and will begin accepting commands.”
Linkara couldn’t help but grin at the familiar voice. “Hi, Nimue.”

“Hello, Linkara. It is a relief to speak with you.”

“Thanks.”

There was a silence.

“I have been informed of the trouble I have caused.”

Linkara blinked. “What?”

“The unit known as ‘Nurse’ and I have become quite close.”

“Oh, yeah? Girl talk?”

“Indeed. Though my mistakes were accidental, I feel an apology is in order.”

“Nimue, you don’t have to apologize.”

“Errors in my internal system caused a mission to fail. I would accept an immediate disassembling if that would-”

“Nimue, you didn’t fail. We did.”

There was a long pause, until Linkara felt himself grow antsy. “Nimue, could you see if anyone else is awake in here?”

“Scanning… Scanning… Yes. Two humans.”

“Location?”

“One is in the Training Room. The other, the Medical Bay.”

Linkara smiled for the first time that night.
------
The darkened medical bay felt more like a morgue as Linkara slipped into the room. Nurse, having been over-taxed with both helping the others do repairs on the base, and with tending to the Rangers injuries, had been put into sleep mode for the night, to allow her to recharge.  This left the room unusually devoid of the usual ambient noise that emitted from the room’s holographic projectors.  Linkara could have sworn that if he dropped a pen on the floor in there, it would have sounded like someone dropping a brick.


“Hey.”

Spoony started at the unfamiliar noise, and turned his head to look. Linkara inwardly winced at his friend’s appearance. There were dark circles under Spoony’s eyes, and he was shaking with the effort it took for him to sit up. Despite that, the gamer grinned at him.

“Hey.”
Linkara walked into the Medical Bay, slowing briefly by Marzgurl’s bed. She was out cold, breathing shallowly.

“Fractured skull and concussion,” Spoony said blandly. “In case you were wondering.”

Linkara sat next to him on an empty bed. “What about you?”

“Doesn’t matter.”

“Does to me.”

Spoony swallowed with effort. “Broken ribs. A couple.”

Linkara sucked in air through his teeth. “Does it hurt?”

“It did, but they put me on some pretty good stuff.” He waved a lazy hand at his IV. “I can see sounds, now.”

The joke was fine, but Spoony’s expression was worrisome. Like he was only being funny for Linkara’s benefit.

Linkara smiled, but it felt fake, like the kind of smile that one gives a person when trying to keep them from stressing over bad news.

“Lucky you.” He said, “When do you think you’ll be back up?”

Spoony grew quiet, his eyes far away and distant, as if he could see something that Linkara couldn’t.

“Dunno.”

Linkara nodded. “We need you guys up, you know? That General guy is a piece of work. Reminds me of Vyce.”

Spoony nodded, but didn’t say anything. Linkara tried again.

“Why are you up?”
“Thinking.”
“About what?”

Spoony took a deep breath, and then another. “I think I’m done.”

Linkara couldn’t help but chuckle. “Hey, come on. I don’t know what they’ve got you on, but you’re not dying.”

“Not yet,” Spoony said shallowly. “But what about next time? I could. So could you. I almost got Marz killed today, and what did it accomplish? A big, fat nothing. This whole thing… all of this… Nexus, Insano, Malachite… I’m done.”

Linkara stared at him in disbelief. “What?”

“Don’t tell me you haven’t thought about it. I said so at the very beginning- this is ridiculous. We’re internet reviewers, dude! They need warriors. Not nerds.”

“Spoony, come on-”

“Wait, scratch that.” Spoony’s tone was acidic. “Critic is the leader; after all, who wouldn’t let a psycho who threatened to kill all of us on multiple occasions call the shots? Marzgurl and Chick? Warrior princesses. Xena and She-Ra with less boobage. And you? The fucking champion of Earth, with years of magical battles under your belt.”

The gamer paused. “The only one we don’t need is me.”

Linkara felt himself get angry. “Stop the pity party.”

Spoony sat up, and his face paled. Despite his evident pain, the gamer managed to look furious.

“Well, excuuuuuse me, princess!” He said, glaring “Just because I’m the only one brave enough to point out how stupid this is!”

Linkara’s eyes narrowed, and he heard the words leave his mouth before he realized what they meant.

“What you’re saying is that you’d rather save your own skin than stand up for what’s right.” He said, “You’re not brave. You’re a coward.

Spoony was silent, and the silence was the worst. Linkara would have preferred yelling, cursing, like the Spoony he knew. But all he saw was tranquil fury. And that, in itself was something, when in Spoony’s hands, could be far scarier than any nightmarish creature from the depths of hell.

“Get out.”

Linkara tried to backpedal. “Hey, come on-”

“Get out.”

There was an awful pause. Linkara eventually stood and left, giving one backwards look. Spoony lay flat on his back, staring up at the ceiling.

The comic reviewer felt his stomach sink.

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