Good Job, Kim Possible

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The only thing less convenient than having a broken leg is attempting to climb a tree with said broken leg. Subtlety and sleuthing had never been my greatest talents, but with my leg encased in thick decorated plaster, I had all the grace and elegance of an uncoordinated three-legged turtle.

With an embarrassing pant of exhaustion, I hoisted myself up another branch, cursing under my breath when my leg continued to hang listlessly. "Do you think my doctor would be mad at me if I told him about this?" I called down to my cousin.

Kaelin looked up from her book and squinted at me. "Not at all," she reassured me with an enthusiastic thumbs-up. "I've heard climbing trees is stage three of broken-leg recovery. Really helps with healing process."

I decided I wasn't going to fact check that.

I stared upwards, eyeing my target with laser focus through red and gold autumn leaves. Only three branches left until I would reach the second floor window that led to Jace Hartley's bedroom, carefully propped open by Daria this morning. This is going to be so much fun.

Everyone had to have a reason to get up in the morning; something that forced their legs out of bed and helped them to pull back the curtains to embrace the day. Kaelin woke up to read. My brother Austin woke up to play video games. My friend Jonah woke up because he was forced to, but still generally considered it a crime that it was mandatory. My reason for waking up was torturing Jace Hartley. My hatred for Hartley predated my earliest memory. I couldn't pinpoint the exact moment I decided that he was my least favourite person.

Mum did tell me that he, quite literally, pissed in my sandbox in kindergarten, which is a perfect example of the foul excuse for a human being that Hartley was. He insisted, to this day, that it was actually some snotty-nosed kid called Ryan, but I didn't believe him. I did give him a revenge bowl cut when he was asleep not long after, so perhaps that was the beginning of our rivalry.

No matter when or where it started, it was a simple fact that would remain true until the day I died; Lena Montez and Jace Hartley shared a mutual loathing that burned with the heat of a thousand suns.

Unfortunately, my friends adopted Jace into our little group about a year ago. This meant that, tragically, I was forced to see his face on a regular basis.

I didn't know who decided it was a good idea to invite him into our group. Now recess and lunch were an adventure in possible food poisoning (apparently we both had the laxatives idea on the same day), "accidental" but strategic drink spillages and a consistent and vividly imaginative stream of violent threats. The constant proximity had done nothing but add fuel to the fire of our hatred.

And yet, my accident meant that I hadn't been mean to Hartley in far too long. The grinding crush of metal, glass and most of the bones in my leg had robbed me of many things, but I was arguably most upset about the loss of many months of being nasty to Hartley. Or, you know, enduring trauma and pain, but it was primarily the Hartley thing. But now that I was (mostly) recovered, I was going to remedy that.

"Can you move your wonderful ass a little bit faster?" Alexander Krisler complained from beneath me. He had the misfortune of climbing up second—so that he could catch me if I fell, though I had little faith in his capability to do so—which meant he was stuck waiting for me to move. Something that was currently not my strongest suit.

"My ass may be wonderful, Alex, but my leg is currently a little less wonderful, so I would appreciate the kindness and patience that a cripple deserves, thanks," I said, looking down at the black head of hair below me.

Alex was my designated prank assistant friend. He was born with a flippant disregard for rules, a love for setting things on fire and a passion for drawing penises on things that shouldn't have a penis on them. Responsibility was not his forte, which was excellent, considering we were committing something vaguely like B&E. Mostly just E, since we weren't actually breaking anything. Is that even a crime?

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