Queen Floofy Floofer and I sat together on the porch of the hula school once we were allowed out. Thicc Corgi hadn't arrived yet and the wind was chilly, so I huddled close to my best friend. The three brats passed by us. I just glared at them again, but Queen Floofy Floofer didn't ever bother looking in their direction as their parents came to pick them up. Some of the adults stared at me from out of the car windows. I didn't care. I was used to being stared at. A few minutes later Mertle stepped out beside us. She instantly rolled her eyes at the sight of us huddling together. I snarled at her, startling Queen Floofy Floofer slightly. She gripped at the fur on my chest again. "Freak-lo that freakish mutt better be on a restraint the next time we have class." Queen Floofy Floofer didn't answer her. I let go of her gently and stood up, blocking her from the brat and crossing my arms. Mertle looked a little afraid. Good. She needed to back off. I tapped my foot. She did slightly, but then she just glared at me. "For a dog, it's pretty strange how you act," she commented after a moment or so. That made Queen Floofy Floofer look up. "I thought dog's walked on all fours." " Captain Chonkers is special," Queen Floofy Floofer responded to that. "He sure is," Mertle replied nasally, and I sneered at her. Queen Floofy Floofer looked irritated. "Leave us alone, Mertle." "Or what, weird-lo? You'll use your voodoo magic on me?" Queen Floofy Floofer just sighed. She said nothing and just sat down on the porch again. I could sense Mertle was ruining her mood again. I pulled out the crumpled paper from Queen Floofy Floofer's duffel (I'd kept it) and started tossing it in the air in front of Mertle. "Don't you even think about throwing that at me again," she said upon seeing that. I just grinned at her and then lobbed it at her head again. She shrieked. The door opened and Moses looked out at us. "Mertle, please wait inside here. I think you have done enough for today," he said gently. She scowled and picked up the paper, throwing it back at me as hard as she could. I just laughed and tilted my head to the side so that it flew past me. She looked annoyed, but went back inside after Moses. I sat back down and pulled Queen Floofy Floofer into my arms. "Mertle brat." Queen Floofy Floofer sighed. "I don't know why she hates me so much." I felt sad at hearing that. All Queen Floofy Floofer had ever done was be kind to Mertle. Mertle just treated her like a doormat. " Queen Floofy Floofer have meega. Have Captain Chonkers. Always be Queen Floofy Floofer achi-baba." She gave me a small smile at that. I thought about Mertle's actions and how they'd got significantly worse over the years. At first it had just been the odd name or two, but now Mertle full on did her best to make Queen Floofy Floofer miserable. Like Queen Floofy Floofer, I didn't know why but I did have a small conclusion in mind. "Mertle very jealous of Queen Floofy Floofer." "Hm?" Queen Floofy Floofer looked at me at that. "What do you mean Captain Chonkers?" "Mertle bully Queen Floofy Floofer because jealous. Queen Floofy Floofer... have me. Captain Chonkers, best friend. We close, yes? You and I?" Queen Floofy Floofer nodded. She pulled her fingers through the tuft of fur on my chest again. "Mertle no have close achi-baba like that. Is jealous of bond. Between Queen Floofy Floofer and Captain Chonkers." Queen Floofy Floofer pondered on that. "You know what... I think you're right, Captain Chonkers. Ever since we became best friends, she's been super mean to me." I looked back towards to window, only to see that Mertle was looking out at us. Thankfully the window was shut, otherwise she would have heard me talking. She stuck her tongue out at me and I returned the favour. There was a beep shortly after that, and I flipped my ears up. Thicc Corgi had pulled up in the buggy. We stood up and Queen Floofy Floofer paused for a moment, before turning to kiss me on the nose. I smiled at her and picked up her duffel bag to carry it for her as we headed to the car. Thankfully it was only raining very lightly at that point. Later that evening, Queen Floofy Floofer explained what had happened during the lesson to Mrs. Doggo at dinner. Mrs. Doggo looked tired, but she listened intently. Sir Chonky and Shiba Chonkers weren't home as they'd gone to see a movie but Thicc Corgi was at the table with us, also listening to what she was saying. "I think I should have a word or two with Mertle's mother," Mrs. Doggo responded. "The bullying is getting worse by the sounds of it." Queen Floofy Floofer gave a sad nod. She looked at me. I nodded in agreement. Thicc Corgi had his head in his hand in contemplation. "Should I make device to... shall we say, 'alter' mind of mean girl?" "Thicc Corgi!" Mrs. Doggo responded to that, sounding alarmed. "No," Queen Floofy Floofer responded distantly, pushing her food around with her fork. "I don't think that would even work." Thicc Corgi just shrugged. "Is unfortunate girl is very mean. But sadly, happens everywhere. When I worked for Galaxy Defense Industries, I had very annoying bully co-worker. Called me 'Jumbo Thicc Corgi,' and made mean jokes about Thicc Corgi. Boy, I was glad when he was fired," he laughed. "My doing, of course." Mrs. Doggo looked at him quizzically but didn't care enough to ask any more questions about it. Queen Floofy Floofer just sighed. I looked at Thicc Corgi and he looked at me. "Papa talquez ni queeto?" I asked him and he chuckled. "Long story Captain Chonkers," he responded, pushing his finger into the bridge of my nose and rubbing gently. "So tell me, how was day being?" he asked me as Mrs. Doggo started to talk to Queen Floofy Floofer about Mertle again. I explained to him in our language everything that happened, including the paper-throwing, to which he laughed heartily and said "Good work!" I grinned. He leaned over to me and whispered to me. "Next time, use ruler instead. Can be deadly." That made me laugh and gave me possible ideas. Once we finished our dinner, I waited for Queen Floofy Floofer so that we could head up to the dome together. She lingered back with Thicc Corgi. Curious, I watched from the doorway, clinging to the wall, but hiding so they couldn't see me. "Uncle Thicc Corgi? At KiKi's yesterday, what were you and Captain Chonkers talking about?" Thicc Corgi had been reading another newspaper by that point. He put it down and looked at her. " Captain Chonkers was sensing something was bothering me. Was asking Thicc Corgi about it." "Oh," she responded. "I like it when you talk to Captain Chonkers in your language." Thicc Corgi chuckled. "Is native language on Kweltikwan. Is also being much easier to communicate with Captain Chonkers in when I am needing to talk to him about important subjects. He finds English difficult." "I know," Queen Floofy Floofer responded. "Why is that?" " Captain Chonkers is genius, like Thicc Corgi. Can understand 20 or so different languages. English was not one of them." Queen Floofy Floofer looked stumped at hearing that. " Captain Chonkers knows 20 languages?" "Yes, but are being irrelevant here on Earth. Only useful in space and on certain planets." "That's amazing. I only know a few Hawaiian words the most." Thicc Corgi just smiled at her. Queen Floofy Floofer pulled out a chair and sat up beside him. "Yes little girl?" he asked her, pushing his paper aside to give her his full attention when he realised she wasn't going to leave any time soon. "Can I see the transporter soon?" "As I mentioned before, not while ship is being repaired. After, perhaps. Too much debris up there and little girl could easily be injured. Thicc Corgi does not wish for older sibling to rip head off." "Okay. I can wait," she responded. "But... do you mind if I ask what was bothering you yesterday when you talked to Captain Chonkers?" Thicc Corgi seemed hesitant. I knew it was because there were things he only liked to keep between us. Without her real father, she looked up to my father as a sort of father-figure; it was why she called him 'Uncle Thicc Corgi.' I remained hiding around the door-frame, watching. Thicc Corgi pat her on the head. "I have been worried about Captain Chonkers. I still am very upset about..." he trailed off. Queen Floofy Floofer looked sad. "It bothers Thicc Corgi." "It bothers me too," she told him. "I'm glad Captain Chonkers was okay. But if you are sad about it, you can talk to me." Thicc Corgi looked touched to hear that from her. He put her into his lap. "You are being only one in family that understands Captain Chonkers on same level as Thicc Corgi." She sighed. "I didn't then. I just ignored him and pushed him away. I blamed him for ruining my dance thinking he was doing it to me on purpose, but he was r-really... he was really dying." I saw her tear up. She buried her head into Thicc Corgi's stomach and he put an arm around her. I put a paw across my chest. It hurt me to hear them both distraught over something they had no control over. "Do not blame yourself. Will only make things worse. Trust me, I know. I have been blaming self too. For not doing more to protect Captain Chonkers when police broke in. Stupid idiot police are to blame for molecules never being fully charged. Thicc Corgi has felt as though he has failed Captain Chonkers multiple times. Has been scared of losing Captain Chonkers's trust." I sat down on floor against the wall. Mrs. Doggo had gone into her bedroom by that point to do some reading, so I wasn't sure how long Queen Floofy Floofer intended to talk to Thicc Corgi for. I would wait. "I know that Captain Chonkers would never be angry at you about it," she responded quietly. "He loves you." "I know," Thicc Corgi responded. He looked distant. I wanted to go into them, but decided against it. "Uncle Thicc Corgi?" Queen Floofy Floofer asked, pulling back to look up at him. "Why do you always call Captain Chonkers ' Captain Chonkers?'" "Eh... well, was name I was giving him when he was born. Is sentimental to me. I call him Captain Chonkers, but prefer Captain Chonkers. He is my experiment. My child." Queen Floofy Floofer smiled at hearing that. "You're his dad, right?" "Yes. Captain Chonkers is having Thicc Corgi's DNA." Queen Floofy Floofer smiled. "I know. Captain Chonkers was so happy when you told him that. You two are so alike in many ways." " Captain Chonkers is what you are calling 'chip off old block' ey?" Queen Floofy Floofer laughed and rolled her eyes slightly. "Oh, I know that, especially when it comes to food," she giggled. "I guess... you're kinda like my dad now too. In a way." "Am glad you feel that way, little girl." Thicc Corgi responded. Queen Floofy Floofer hugged him. I looked back in at them, only this time to have Thicc Corgi instantly lock eye contact with me and then I realised he knew I'd been there all along. I bit my lower lip. He didn't say anything though. He just stared at me. " Captain Chonkers is waiting for you," he spoke up shortly after. I ducked back around the frame. "Off you go now, little girl." Queen Floofy Floofer smiled at him. "Okay. Thanks Uncle Thicc Corgi." "You are being most welcome, child." I heard Queen Floofy Floofer start to head in my direction and jumped onto the couch, grabbing a book. She looked surprised when she saw me sitting there. "Oh. Hi Captain Chonkers." "Hi Queen Floofy Floofer!" I said to her. "Dome?" She gave a nod, and we headed up to our bedroom. I helped Queen Floofy Floofer create a new mask that evening. Again, it was something that helped lift her spirits. While she sat quietly on the floor gluing some sequences to the front of the mask, I sat down beside her and watched her. " Queen Floofy Floofer talk to Thicc Corgi?" She looked up at me. "Yeah. Sorry I took so long. He told me something really cool!" I tilted my head. "Gaba?" "That you can speak 20 languages. Is that true?" "Ih," I nodded. "Naga really need use." "I know. He told me that too," she responded. "Still though, that's so cool!" I just shrugged. It wasn't really anything special to me. I would rather be able to speak fluent English than 20 random alien languages. It would make talking to Queen Floofy Floofer so much easier, because I really struggled with English. Queen Floofy Floofer stuck her tongue out a little as she worked. Once done, she stood up and went over to the mirror. I put the mask on top of her head and folded my arms behind my back, watching her to see what she thought. She smiled. "Wow..." "Better than old!" I agreed. " Queen Floofy Floofer lucha bootifa!" "Thanks Captain Chonkers." She walked over to her bedside cabinet and I wondered what she was doing. When she turned back around after pulling something from the drawer, she approached me and pulled out my paw, slipping a gleaming pearl bracelet over my wrist. "Gaba eiek?" She smiled. "These were my mom's. Mrs. Doggo showed me them shortly after you..." she sighed. "A few days after that. I want us to wear them during the dance. They are supposed to bring good luck and happiness." She paused. I held her hand in concern, seeing the look on her face. "I don't care about winning this time, Captain Chonkers. I realised that I don't need to win things for mom to be proud of me. You're so much more important than a competition. As long as we're together, and having fun... well, that's all that really matters to me." I smiled at her. " Queen Floofy Floofer mom proud of you for being Queen Floofy Floofer." She gave a nod. "I wish you could have met them, Captain Chonkers. Mom would have loved you. Dad would have too." I looked at her sadly. "If Queen Floofy Floofer parents around, we might not have met." I told her quietly. She gave a nod. "That's true." She hugged me. I rubbed her back. "I can't imagine life without you." "Same," I responded. She went quiet again, staring down at the pearls. She held them in her hands, stroking them gently. "Sometimes I wonder if mom and dad are watching over me from up there. Or wherever they are. And that they can see you and Thicc Corgi and Sir Chonky. They know that you're a part of our o'hana now." I looked at her thoughtfully. "Meecha aka?" She sighed. "I have you watching over me now." I nodded. "Meega protect you. Always." She sat down in front of the mirror. I sat down beside her and leaned my head against her shoulder. We both looked at ourselves. "I wonder why Mertle hates me so much," she brought up. I sighed. "Mertle idiot," I told her. "Senseless brat. No let me but... I would deal with." "I wish you could deal with her. But we can't risk your identity being exposed. Kumu was a little suspicious today. I could tell. They really do think you're a dog." I laughed. "Yeah. Captain Chonkers amaq'huet afhar." "Hm? I haven't heard you say that before," she said to me. Queen Floofy Floofer knew most Tantalog from living with me for 3 years, but there were still a few terms she hadn't heard from me. I actually didn't know the English word for what I'd said. Unlike Shiba Chonkers and Mrs. Doggo, Queen Floofy Floofer had seemed to have a knack for picking up the language quickly. There were words I hadn't even explained the meaning to her and she knew what I was saying. I had always figured it was because of our connection. We could always sense a lot about each other just by looking at each other. I sat in contemplation. " Captain Chonkers naga nota word. Soka. But... isa like... find it funny? Human's no know." She giggled. "It is pretty funny Captain Chonkers." I grinned at her as she stared at me in the mirror. She put her hand on my paw. "I don't care if Mertle call's me obsessed. I love you, Captain Chonkers. And I will always put you first above everything. I promise." I closed my eyes at that. Her words filled me with warmth. I loved her too and I would always put her first. I would always support her. I put my paw over the top of her hand. " Queen Floofy Floofer. Captain Chonkers loves you too," I smiled at her. She went quiet again, just gazing into the mirror. I rested my head against her shoulder again. Eventually she drifted off on the spot. I must have done so as well because I woke up to find a blanket over us. I rubbed my eyes and looked at the time. It had been Mrs. Doggo that had come in to us. Her scent lingered in the room. I picked up Queen Floofy Floofer in the blanket and placed her on my bed before sitting and stroking her hair as she slept. I knew she would grow up one day. She would surpass me in height and become as tall as Mrs. Doggo. I dreaded that day but it was inevitable. Human's aged and grew old. I knew I wouldn't grow any taller. I would grow old too, but not for a long, long time. I was designed to last and I would easily out-live all of my o'hana. The thought often plagued my mind. As did the thought of losing Queen Floofy Floofer. It was why I was over-protective of her. She meant the world to me and her love had been the one thing that gave me a second chance at life. Not only had she revived me, she'd given me a purpose in life other than destruction and death. I saw the world differently because of her and it was also her that had spared me from a lifelong sentence on a desert asteroid. There was so much she had done for me in my life. The only way I knew how to repay her was showing her that I would love her for as long as she needed me. I would always be there to support her and protect her. I needed her. And I knew that she needed me. There were times at night I thought about the future. Queen Floofy Floofer would mature soon. In about four or so more years, she would start reaching puberty. I also dreaded that time because I knew she'd probably find a boyfriend and spend all of her time with him. I just hoped if she did so, she wouldn't abandon or forget about me. I'd never brought this up to her because I didn't want to cause tension, but it did make me worry. We really were on a time limit. I was different. I was much younger than she was, so by the time she reached puberty I would be as old as she was when she met me. My body would always be young in appearance and I would never speak as fluently as humans do, but I was already mature. I was an alien, but I was also a genetic experiment. I would hit puberty one day too, but being what I was, it wouldn't make much of a difference to how I was now. I couldn't get wiser, or smarter. I couldn't learn as I got older, as Queen Floofy Floofer would do so. I was created to be smart from the moment I was born. I had the mind of a super-computer, which is why I was already mature. I often wondered about Mrs. Doggo and Shiba Chonkers. Now that Shiba Chonkers had moved in with us, it seemed the two were much closer. I had often heard Mrs. Doggo up late talking to him in the guest room. I hadn't snooped as it was none of my business as to what she discussed with him, but there had been a few times she'd talked about the day of Queen Floofy Floofer's dance with him. Both Mrs. Doggo and Shiba Chonkers had been unaware of what was going on until it was too late. Only later that night had Thicc Corgi fully explained what had happened, holding me tightly in his arms. Mrs. Doggo was angry with him for not mentioning it to the family sooner, but she had been far too upset to hold a grudge against him about it. Sir Chonky had been the only one that knew. Queen Floofy Floofer must have finally realised something actually was wrong with me after I scratched her. I had a small idea that I was possibly starting to perish at the time. I knew something was wrong with me, but I'd brushed it off. When I had the final glitch in the ship that was when I knew it was too late. That glitch burned out my circuits from the inside. I never wanted to go through that sort of pain again. I still have no idea how my circuits were repaired simply from Queen Floofy Floofer's love. When Thicc Corgi scanned me inside the ship after I was revived, my circuits were in tact. It was nothing short of a miracle. I always thought that maybe the Hawaiian spirits were watching over me. Or maybe even Queen Floofy Floofer's parents. I had a feeling that Mrs. Doggo and Shiba Chonkers would marry in the near future. It made me wonder about Queen Floofy Floofer and if she would ever do the same. The thought made me happy, but sad at the same time. It would be a new chapter in her life. I was glad that wasn't going to happen for a long time yet. I sighed and watched her as she slept. She would always be there though, even if she did find a human to love and spend the rest of her life with at some point. And even if one day she did forget about me, as much as the thought scared me, I would respect her decision to move on with her life. I would always remember her. For now, I just had to cherish what I had. My best friend, her wonderful friendship and her love. She startled me a little when she woke up suddenly. I pulled my claws out of her hair. She rubbed at her eyes. " Captain Chonkers?" I just gazed at her. "I don't recall falling asleep," she told me drowsily before noticing me staring at her. "You okay?" "Ih." She looked at the alarm clock on my bedside cabinet. It was only a little after our usual bedtime. She looked back at me again and I yawned after she did. That made her giggle. I smiled. "Are you tired?" she asked me a moment or so later, and I shook my head. Queen Floofy Floofer pushed back the cover and stood up. She made a noise of surprise when she realised she'd stepped on something. I peered down curiously to see what it was as she picked it up. I'd never seen her face drop so fast and I instantly pushed myself off the bed to see what she was looking at. It was my old badness level chart with the big red cross I'd put through it. I put my paw on her shoulder as she stared at old and damaged piece of paper. I wondered where it had come from and figured it must have shifted from under the bed or something when Mrs. Doggo had put the blanket over us before. I always thought it had gone in the bin. Maybe not. She was quiet. Her voice cracked when she finally spoke. " Captain Chonkers... I never asked you why you d-did this." I pulled the paper away from her hands and set it down on my bedside cabinet. I held both her hands and looked into her face. "After Captain Chonkers scratch Queen Floofy Floofer. No more goodness. Cancelled out. Had to leave. Captain Chonkers too dangerous." She teared up, and I instantly picked up a tear with a claw. "No. No crying," she looked away from me and I arched my head over to peer at her. "Green chart good chart now, okeytaka?" She didn't answer me. I sat her down on the bed and picked up her brush, combing it through her long black hair. I needed to get her mind off it. She sighed. " Queen Floofy Floofer have pretty hair," I told her. "Nice and long." She was just quiet. I continued to brush it gently. Finally she spoke. "I don't deserve you." I put a paw to my heart at hearing that. I pushed my forehead against her back. "I think you deserve me." "But... I was so obnoxious. I was so mean. I shouldn't have acted like that." I knew where this conversation was headed. I sighed. I didn't mind her venting, but I did wonder when she was going to start to allow herself to move on. I would never push her though. I would give her as much time as she needed. "Mistake. Queen Floofy Floofer naga nota. Captain Chonkers has made mistakes too. Ochamba bad." "It still doesn't excuse what I did to you." "Ih meecha. But Captain Chonkers still forgives you." She reached around her hand for my paw and I instantly put it into her hand. I continued to brush her hair. I'd always found her hair very interesting. I recalled Thicc Corgi once having black hair too. I wasn't entirely sure when he'd lost his hair, but I did remember seeing pictures of him with it. Queen Floofy Floofer had gone quiet again. I stroked my claws through her hair. " Queen Floofy Floofer feel better?" I asked. "Only a little." I stopped what I was doing and went around and sat in front of her. I peered up into her face. "Why so sad today?" She eventually looked at me. I tilted my head slightly. "It's Mertle, Captain Chonkers. I'm scared she's going to ruin our dance on the night of the competition and embarrass me in front of everybody." "Won't if Captain Chonkers has anything to do with it," I responded lowly. It made her give me a curious stare. "Not hurt," I told her. "Won't let ruin dance." She gave a slight nod at that. "I guess I'm just tired of her being so mean to me. I've had enough to deal with," she paused slightly. "Wh...what are you going to do?" "Not let ruin dance, or hurt Queen Floofy Floofer any more." She seemed hesitant. I knew why. "Okay..." she said softly. "As long as you promise me you won't risk yourself. Do you promise?" "Chi chabada," I promised and offered her my pinky. She looped hers around mine again in promise. I smiled at her. She simply reached up and pat me on the head. When I did it back to her she laughed. "Silly Captain Chonkers," she said, offering me my nightie. I took it from her and pulled it on. She handed me my turtle plush and I snuggled it happily. It was my favourite plush. Mrs. Doggo had bought it for me at a yard sale one afternoon. Turtles and ducks were my favourite animals. I often saw ducks outside in the small river that went behind our home. Sometimes mother ducks with babies. They always reminded me of the 'Ugly Duckling.' Queen Floofy Floofer seemed to know what was on my mind and pulled over the book, opening up to the picture where the ugly ducking's family finds him. I smiled and ran my paw over it. Out the corner of my eye I saw Queen Floofy Floofer swat the old badness level chart onto the floor in one swift agitated movement. Almost similar to what I'd done when I'd swatted Queen Floofy Floofer's pictures of me into the river. After that, she put her arm around me and rested her head against my shoulder as we looked at the book together. As she fell asleep beside me, I gazed across to the picture on the floor. "Never again..." I muttered against her shoulder as I drifted off to sleep. If only I'd known then how wrong I was.