The Handmaid’s Tale – Season 2

Yesterday, we finished up Season 2 of The Handmaid’s Tale for the second time. Getting ready for Season 4, we started over with season one and are making our way through. At the end of season one, we find Offred had semi-escaped and was on the run just as she learned that she was pregnant.

THE HANDMAID’S TALE — “The Word” — Episode 213 — Serena and the other Wives strive to make change. Emily learns more about her new Commander. Offred faces a difficult decision. Offred (Elisabeth Moss) and Nick (Max Minghella), shown. (Photo by: George Kraychyk/Hulu)

The first part of season two is during her escape. We learn so much more backstory here on how Gilead formed and where everyone was at the time of take over. We also get a lot of backstory on Offred/June’s mother. This plays an important role for the season.

June’s mother was an activist, always looking to make right in the world. She is hardly there for June because her causes were more important. This is key for the season finale.

June does not get free during season two. She is recaptured and has her baby, who is taken away from her as soon as the baby is born by Mrs. Waterford. We see a lot of the conflict between these two women, June and Mrs. Waterford. There also is a very brutal rape scene in this season that you can’t believe happened.

Ultimately, you see a small truce between the two of them and almost feel sorry for Mrs. Waterford. In the end (season finale), you see that soft side to our female villain. Offred has the ability to escape, again, but this time chooses to go back and fight. Hence the connection with her mother’s story. June becomes a fighter and activist in Gilead.

We’re going into season three, which I don’t remember a lot about. I think we only watched a couple of episodes so this is all new charted area for me. Let’s see if we can get this finished this week.

The In-Between (2019)

Waiting and waiting and waiting… I have finally been able to watch the 2019 film, The In-Between, starring Jennifer Stone and Mindy Bledsoe. And I am so glad that I did.

The In-Between movie poster

Jennifer Stone has been my celebrity crush since her days on Disney’s Wizards of Waverly Place and I have never had a crush for this long. There is just something about this girl; so when she co-wrote and produced this indie film, I was a strong supporter of it on social media.

Following the activities of these artists on Instagram, I watched them take to the road for the filming of the movie that almost mirrors real life. Jennifer Stone plays Mads, who has type-1 diabetes. Mindy plays Junior, who has Complex Regional Pain Syndrome. Both actresses struggle with these diseases in real life, so it made the writing of this road trip story very close to home and very real.

Both characters have a reason for the road trip and from the beginning, you can feel a connection between them. Although it was almost hard to follow in the beginning because I didn’t feel there was much set-up, you learn about them through their travels. It wasn’t until the end of the film when we truly understood it all and their acting shined during the conflict and argument that brought the entire film together.

The film is short, only an hour and 18 minutes, but what it lacks in time, makes up for in quality. The In-Between won quite a few awards on the film festival circuits including Best Feature at Women Texas Film Festival. With my wife only watching films by female directors, I was happy to be able to support this film, not only because of my love for Jennifer Stone but for Mindy as a female director. It was definitely worth the watch.

Titans – Season 1

I spent my day off watching the first season of DC’s Titans on HBOMax. This was the series that tempted me to purchase DC Universe streaming channel but I held out when I heard they were bringing all the DC shows to HBOMax when they created the service.

Titans is an adult and live-action version of the animated series, Teen Titans, with Dick Greyson as the lead character. In season one, we find that Dick has left Gotham for Detroit as he is trying to distance himself from Bruce Wayne/Batman.

Quickly we are introduced to another handful of DC characters that will eventually make up the Titans. We have Starfire, Raven, Gar, Dove, and Hawk. Others we meet along the way is The Doom Patrol, Donna Troy, Jason Todd (the new Robin), and our villains. Even during the finale, we get a little Batman and Joker action.

Season one is more of an introduction of characters and some backstory, but not a lot. We get glimpses of who the characters are but the story arc revolves around Raven (Rachel Roth) and stopping a lot of people from killing her. It takes all season to find out why people want her dead and season two will be that reason.

DC and Warner Brothers really didn’t skimp on the quality of writing or special effects. While I think the acting could have been better, that is what you get with a lot of unknowns. Ultimately, the first season has caught my attention and I am ready to watch season two. I was able to finish the first in one sitting.

Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist – Season 2

Season 2 of Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist dropped this weekend and while I am sad to see it end, I am kind of glad about it.

Last season, something happened in Zoey’s world that allowed her to hear people’s innermost thoughts through song and dance. What a genius show and what a fun show. I loved everything about it and could not wait for a new episode.

Besides the fun of the music, Lauren Graham was on the show and that made me super happy. At the end of season 1, we lose that. We also lose the fun of the romance as Zoey falls for a co-worker at the same time her best friend falls for her because in Season 2, Zoey hooks up with Max. Then breaks up with Max. Hooks up with Simon. Then breaks up with Simon. This off and on became very tiresome, very quickly.

It was different when she couldn’t decide but Zoey became too moody and melancholy throughout the entire season, you wondered how she still had friends.

I don’t know who I am rooting for Max or Simon; and at one point during the season, I wanted all of them to just quit and give up. Maybe the season finale redeemed itself. If you have not watched the season and hate spoilers, stop right now…

Because at the finale, Zoey chose Max and for the spinner… Max can hear her innermost thoughts via song. It might make season 3 a little more interesting.

The Handmaid’s Tale – Season 1

After watching Mad Men, I wanted to watch The Handmaid’s Tale because of Elisabeth Moss. We watched it as it originally aired but recently went back to watch it with the announcement of season 4. When we originally watched, we only made it through season 2 so we are a little behind.

In season one, parts of the United States were taken over by a religious cult that embodies the life before woman’s lib. Men controlled everything; women could not do anything. And this new country has an odd hierarchy or social classes to it. You have commanders, their wives, the handmaids, and the Aunts.

While the show’s first season does not get into detail about how this actually happened, the show begins already in progress. Flashbacks of Offred (Elisabeth Moss) show how she comes into the program of being a handmaid, which is a surrogate for the infertile wives of the commanders. Handmaids are essentially raped by the commanders because they were enslaved to the job from the old country.

The first season really gets into detail on the rituals of the handmaids and the story of June Osborne and her life as a handmaid. The watch can be pretty grueling and at times the torture is a little hard to watch. Even for me, it was hard to watch at times. The second go-around, I am tougher and can tolerate it.

Elisabeth Moss is excellent at her role and deserved every award she won for this season. We are on to season two now. We’ll discuss more later.

Why I Love and Hate Apple Music

When the digital music age took off, I was one of the first on it. Yes, I might have been on Napster. It’s how I found Belanova. I was all for getting rid of the excess in my life even though I don’t think music is an excess; CDs are.

Before digital, I had lots of vinyl and lots of CDs that I owned. I listened to everything in my collection. I knew all the songs, the tracks, track listings, names of the songs, and knew every band/artist in my collection. You could ask me questions about my collection and I could tell you most anything.

Once digital became the norm,  I ripped them all on to my computer at the highest quality and uploaded them to my iPod. It was the biggest iPod they had at 160GB. My entire collection fit on that one device. I didn’t grab a few files online but once I learned about a new artist, I purchased their music legally. My collection grew.

As I added new music, digitally, I became less connected to it especially as my iPod was set to shuffle all the time. Maybe I didn’t it to myself by shuffling but I have a wide variety of music and want to listen to it all. I stopped buying physical media and only purchased from the iTunes store, until Apple Music.

Apple Music is wonderful. Period. A lot like Spotify, Apple Music gives you music streaming. You listen to what you want, when you want, and they give you recommendations based off your listening habits. This is awesome. I have found so much new music and new artists that my library has grown by leaps and bounds.  And for writing music reviews, this is perfect. I can pull up new music, listen to it over and over while I writing my review, and done. I don’t need to own it, purchase it, or waste money if it’s bad.

That sounds great, right? Its is until your music library is filled with downloaded music that you can’t remember ever downloading. When I find out about a new artist, I don’t always have time to stop right then and listen to them. I might have heard one song that was amazing and I downloaded the album for later. Later never comes because you have still a bunch of other albums still in your later pile. Sadly, there is no pile. It is just taking up space on your “cloud” and you never come back to it.

Just recently, Apple Music gave us “new music” based on our listening habits. Every Friday, we tune into the new music. A good song comes on and I go to add it to my library, just to find out I already downloaded it. A band, SIENNA, had already been added and I didn’t even remember it. This is my life with music right now. I have so much music, that I have too much music.

Without the tangible disc in my hand, I am disconnected with music. I don’t see the names of bands anymore. I don’t know the names of the albums, either. Heck, I don’t even know the names of the songs. There is a band called VEINTIUNO and I really like their music, but I can’t not tell you one name of a song. This is how digital and streaming services have changed the way we listen to music. Or maybe it is just like radio. You hear a song and you like it, but you have no clue of who sings it.

I love Apple Music… and I hate that it has made me disconnected from it too. It seems that unless you stop and play a downloaded album over and over, you never truly connect like you did with physical media.

RIP Ray Reyes (Ex-Menudo)

Today, my heart aches for the loss of a man that has been a part of my life since 1983. Ray Reyes passed away April 30, 2021 and the fans of the group, Menudo share the pain. As of this morning, the cause of death is still unknown.

Ray was my childhood crush before I knew I figured out that I liked girls. I remember going to the hotel and standing outside with Ray, along with Johnny, Ricky, Roy, and Charlie on their balcony. We stood out in the California heat and screamed up at them and through little stuffed animals at them. Yes, Ray caught my teddy bear.

Over the years, I saw Ray perform many times with the group between 1983-1985. He might have only been in the group for a short time, but none the less, he was one of the strongest supporters of the group. He helped reunite six of the members to form El Reencuentro: The Menudo Reunion. Even after that, he remained a strong presence for the group with the fans.

I finally had the opportunity to meet him in Houston, when the Menudo reunion came to town. So humble, he was Menudo’s loveable Teddy Bear.

Ray will always be a part of my life and he will never be forgotten.

King of the Kingdom – Epilogue (END)

The story itself ends there but ending on chapter 13 could not happen for this story. As a continuation of this chapter, we jumped ahead approximately ten years to see how the characters prevailed and to see if they truly ended up “Happily ever after.”

Daniel and Kim were still married and as happy together as ever. He met Kim’s family and they were who they said they were. Daniel even came face to face with Shego and Dr. Drakken, the mastermind that Shego worked for. Kim made sure that he was not harmed. He liked having a superhero for a wife, even though it was a dangerous life to live. Kim hired a few girls to portray her at the parks as they opened a treasure hunt around the world at Epcot for fans of the show.

The couple had two kids, a girl named Drew who came nine months after they were married, and a boy named Andrew who was about five. The kids spent most of their time in California at the studios with studio teachers. Andrew began following in his dad’s footsteps and had already begun to draw and create characters to be used in upcoming movies and cartoons. Drew became a writer and was using her mom’s adventures with Shego to create some new adventures of your own.

The family split their time between California and Orlando. Daniel moved his Orlando apartment to the Bay Lake Tower, which was more apartment-like than the Contemporary Hotel. While in California, the couple lived in a modest house in Hollywood Hills. At the couple’s Hollywood home, they had a wonderful pet named, “Sunflower”. Daniel decided that she was to come home with him and become part of the family.

 

Disney bought a bit more land in California including enough in the city of Long Beach, where the company opened a previously planned venture. They opened “Disney America” in Long Beach, a historical-based theme park. The second resort included the theme park, hotels, shopping, and a cruise port where they expanded the Disney Cruise Line to include trips to Alaska, Canada, and Mexico.

Daniel had researched the original plans for EPCOT and Disney opened the exact design in the middle of the country that would divide the east and the west. The new EPCOT was built in Conroe, Texas. Walt approved the location and creation of his baby. Walt visited Daniel many times throughout the years to give him his approval.

More hotels added to all the parks and were expanded. EPCOT Orlando brought more countries to the World Showcase that included Greece, Brazil, Russia, Australia, and Spain.

 

As for the cast of characters, Roy passed away on schedule but there was no destruction at any of the Disney parks. The service was lovely, and the cast of Disney icons used their stand-ins at the parks to attend the service. Mickey and the gang cried as they said goodbye to both Roy and Diane, who had passed away a year before. Walt was there in spirit for both services.

Many of the friends Daniel had met in the cartoon graveyard were implemented into different movies and television shows. The graveyard ceased to exist after everyone went back to work. No longer were ideas and characters allowed to be tossed away. Daniel wanted everything kept in one area until it was used. This virtual world became a playground of sorts where no one felt abandoned.

Ron finally met the man of his dreams, he just needed to look outside of his safe zone and into the merchandising department. He met Jose and they got married in Orlando, where same-sex marriage was finally legal. Daniel and Kim attended the ceremony, as well as all the Disney characters.

To continue the traditions of Walt Disney, Daniel made sure his son Andrew would be groomed to take over the family business of family entertainment. He could see his son had the gift, as his characters came to life. Andrew met with his grandfather once during that time, but Daniel knew that it would not be long before Andrew and Wilbur would run off on adventures of their own with the time machine.

Did everyone live happily ever after? For now, yes but who knows what adventures will come their way.

King of The Kingdom – Chapter 12

The tour around the world started in California where Daniel spent two weeks visiting all the parks and all the corporate offices. With all the traveling on his plate, Daniel got the secretary he wanted. Elisabeth began working at once to organize Daniel’s schedule to fit everyone and everywhere in on his calendar. By the end of the California trip, Daniel had gotten used to the layout of the Burbank studios.

After California, Daniel visited Tokyo. Disney had two parks and three different hotels in Tokyo. One of the parks opened in 1983, but most of the additions happened within the last few years. The parks were owned in conjunction with Oriental Land Company. Daniel wanted to give much attention to meeting with the executives and to make sure that everyone was happy.

 

His visits around the world were not just for Daniel to play at the parks but to talk to the employees who worked at the parks. He knew that sometimes those people were the ones with the greatest ideas. He took all the ideas and kept them handy. He never wanted to discredit one of them from the start. He felt that sometimes those ideas may be needed again.

After Tokyo, Daniel headed to Hong Kong to meet the newest addition to the Disney parks family. Much of the construction of new areas, rides, and attractions were on their way. Daniel received an exclusive look at the progress. Disney was only using forty percent of the land bought for the resorts. He met with Bill Ernest, the executive vice president of the resort, and a team of Imagineers over lunch to discuss plans for future expansion. There was also talk about buying more land next to the park for a second theme park. Daniel threw around ideas that were positively received by the executives in Hong Kong.

 

Daniel had been away from Orlando for two months. He missed his bed. He had grown accustomed to his room at the Contemporary Hotel. He also missed Kim though they talked often on the phone. It still was not enough. Deep down, he was a tad happy that she was on the other side of the world. He did not know how much longer he could hold out on being a gentleman around her. He wanted to return to Orlando where he could focus on Kim and their upcoming wedding day.

 

When he got to Paris, Roy called Daniel and let him know that he was in town and wanted to go with him to some of the executive meetings. Daniel wanted to stay at the Hotel New York on the Disney property. He was very fond of Art Deco and thought the beauty of this hotel surpassed all the hotels he had stayed out thus far.

Before his breakfast meeting with Roy and Philippe Gas, the CEO of Disneyland Paris; he called Kim to see how she was doing. He knew that he might wake her up as it was about 2:30 in the morning in Orlando. When she answered, she did not seem like she was sleeping at the time. She almost sounded that she was surprised he called her.

“What are you doing up so late?” he asked.

“Uhm,” she paused a second. “I have been working on wedding plans.”

“How is it coming along?” he asked, inviting her to spill the beans about the wedding.

Kim and Ron had planned all of it. Daniel still had no clue on the date or any of the details. They seemed to be having so much fun planning a dream wedding, Daniel did not want to take away from that.

“We have most of it finalized, you know. Ron has been great and has awesome ideas.” Kim replied, giving him no more details than he already had.

“Well, I don’t want to keep you. I just wanted to check in with you. Can’t wait to see you in a few days.” he added.

“Yeah, me too. I love you so much. See you soon.” Kim and Daniel said their mushy goodbyes and Daniel went on with his breakfast meeting.

When Daniel got to the restaurant, Roy was already there with his people, working on some ideas that he had for the animation department. Before Roy came to Paris, he had power lunches with the creative team in animation for new story ideas. Roy brought some ideas with him to discuss with Daniel. In such little time, Daniel felt he had gained more responsibilities than originally discussed. He did not seem to mind. Everything felt so comfortable for him and the new challenges had become second nature to him.

The breakfast went well. Daniel looked forward to many new expansions to the Paris park and wanted to be a part of those ideas. Roy told Daniel that they were invited to a formal event that night and Elisabeth would be taking him to get fitted for a tuxedo that he would need.

Daniel never owned a tuxedo. Roy said he would get much use out of it with premiers and functions that Daniel’s new job would require him to attend. Daniel did not mind, he knew that eventually, he would have to do it with his wedding coming up.

 

The event was held at Disneyland Paris park. Inside the castle was a ballroom that Disney used for parties and special events. Roy had told Daniel that Disney was entertaining some important diplomats and they were going all out in a Disney event like no other.

When Daniel arrived, the room was filled with Disney executives, as well as formally dressed Disney characters. Mickey and his friends were all dressed in tuxedos and ball gowns. The princes and princesses were all there as well as many of the many favorites that could be seen in the parks. Everyone was dressed to the nines.

Daniel shook hands with lots of people, some he had never met before. The room was set up with a small stage at one end of the room. On the other end was a grand staircase that came down from rooms that were upstairs.

The event was in full swing, Daniel was introduced to many of the Paris elite, but nothing was as impressive as the entrance of Kim Possible.

Kim, dressed in an all-white wedding dress with a long train that flowed behind her, made her way to the top of the stairs. The eyes around the room all pointed directly to her. She stood there waiting for her love’s attention to turn to her. As it did as everyone a hush fell over the room.

Daniel noticed everyone looking toward the stairs and he turned his attention in that direction. It was the most beautiful woman in the world, who smiled as Daniel stood frozen by her beauty. Butterflies went crazy in his stomach as he realized that day was what she and her best friend had been planning.

Kim began to glide down the stairs and music started to play by a band off to the side of the room. Daniel watched her. His eyes were still focused on her. He smiled as she got closer.

Roy leaned over and asked Daniel in his ear, “I think you need a best man.”

Daniel looked at Roy, they hugged, and Roy stood next to him as his best man. At the bottom of the stairs, the wedding march began to play. The room divided into two as they let the bride pass towards her groom. James, Kim’s dad, was in the crowd. He met her and walked down the aisle created by the guests.

As her best friend, Ron felt it was his duty to play maid of honor although he was in a tuxedo and not a dress.

When Kim reached the end of the aisle, they found themselves at the front of the stage where a minister came out to conduct the ceremony. Kim and her father hugged, and her hand was to Daniel to take as his wife.

As Kim took her place next to him, she leaned to him and said, “I hope this isn’t too soon.”

He replied, “This is perfect.”

 

The guests knew they were attending the wedding of Disney’s newest family member and an unlikely marriage candidate, a character. The two of them were married in a beautiful ceremony and reception in the castle at Disneyland Paris.

Outside the castle was a glass carriage, like that of Cinderella’s carriage, which waited for the newly married couple. After the reception, Daniel and Kim met the carriage that took them around the circle and down the main street where a limousine waited for them.

The driver took them around Paris at night before returning them to the Hotel New York.

Daniel could not get over the fact that everyone had kept the secret he would be married that night. In the limousine, Daniel had a tough time keeping himself from ravishing Kim. He contained himself until they got back to the hotel. As soon as they were inside the room, neither one could hide the passion they had for each other. Shirts, pants, and dresses hit the floor as they passionately hugged and kissed each other. Hands wandered to all parts of their bodies. Finally, the moment that both Daniel and Kim were yearning for happened.

 

The next morning, Daniel woke with Kim next to him. It was the greatest moment in his life thus far, Daniel thought. He rose and sat on the balcony, letting Kim continue to sleep. He stared off at his Kingdom. He realized that he was on top of the world. Kim woke and saw Daniel on the balcony. She put on her robe and walked up behind him. Her arms came over his shoulders, she hugged him and kissed him on the neck.

“Our plane leaves this afternoon for our honeymoon,” she whispered in his ear.

Daniel laughed, “You planned everything, didn’t you?”

“Pretty much. I cleared your schedule with Elisabeth and Roy. You are mine for another two weeks.”

“Where are we going?” he asked.

“I know you have always wanted to visit Greece. This is your chance. We will be in Athens for a week then I rented a beach villa on the island of Santorini for rest before we go back to Orlando.”

Daniel was excited about the news.

 

The couple set off for a honeymoon full of adventure, sightseeing, and relaxation that Kim hoped would be danger-free. She would hate to be called off to fight crime if Shego and Dr. Drakken did not behave themselves, which they did during Kim’s once-in-a-lifetime event.

Back in the states, word of Disney’s Fairy Tale wedding was front-page news. Everyone was excited about the news and welcomed the news with open arms. All the magazines plastered with their faces and tagged the story with “And they lived happily ever after!”

King of The Kingdom – Chapter 11

Daniel felt a little guilty for not dropping everything to spend time with Kim after the meeting; but as the new heir to the Disney fortune, he could not go back on his word of spending time with some of the cast members. He was trying to be everything to everyone. He had no clue where Kim was staying that night, so he would have to wait until the next day to see her. It seemed like a long time to wait but he had so much to check up on if he were to “run” the company.

Back at his hotel room at the Contemporary, a backpack full of paperwork to look over sat on his table. Daniel knew he was not going to be a suit, so his backpack served him well as a briefcase. He sat in front of his laptop looking at storyboards that were sent digitally to him already. Daniel made notes about everything, but he could not focus. There was so much going on that work was the last thing on his mind.

Staring out his window, he could see the park lit up in the darkness. It made him think about everything that had happened before going to California. He thought about the characters he had met and all the things they had told him. He still thought about how Wilbur and Ariel told him that Kim Possible was bad news.

Part of him believed them because any time he had been around her his emotions took over. His thoughts about her were not very Disney-like. He knew that he felt something for her that he never felt before. It was either true love or only lust. He knew he would need to figure it out before he saw her the next day.

Daniel stepped out on the balcony of his room and closed his eyes. He wished himself to the Magic Kingdom. When his eyes opened, he was standing in Fantasyland after the park was closed. No one was around, so Daniel wandered as he gathered his thoughts. He saw a bench next to the Dumbo ride. Just as he sat, a voice yelled up at him. “Hey, watch it, buddy.”

Daniel jumped back up as he saw he was about to sit on Jiminy Crickett. “I’m sorry. Didn’t see you there.” He sat next to him instead of on him.

“That’s okay. I didn’t want to get smashed by your big human behind. What are you doing here? I would have thought you would be out celebrating or something like that.” Jiminy continued.

“I’m tired of all the socializing. I got stuff on my mind.” Daniel said to his new little friend.

“The girl?” Jiminy asked.

“How did you know?”

“There’s been talk. You do know that we all talk to each other.” Jiminy responded as he took a seat with Daniel.

“What has everyone been saying?”

“This and that. I’ve heard that Hollywood Studios has been a bit lonely without Kim Possible there.” The cricket told Daniel as the two of them conversed.

“What do you mean, without?” Daniel asked.

“They took Kim Possible and Ron Stoppable out of the parks. Not sure why though. So, what is your problem with the girl?”

“It’s not a problem. I am just trying to figure out if I am truly in love with her or am I just infatuated with her.” Daniel realized he was talking to a cricket about love advice, he laughed.

“Sounds like you need to talk to people who have experience in girl problems.” Jiminy motioned for Daniel to follow him. He led Daniel to the back door of one of the buildings in Fantasyland.

Inside the room were all the princes from Disney’s classics. Prince Phillip from “Sleeping Beauty” was there, as well as Prince Erik from “The Little Mermaid.” Prince Charming from “Cinderella” sat on a chair talking with Prince Adam, better known as Beast from “Beauty and The Beast”. Jiminy told Daniel that they were the guys to talk about girl troubles. The princes noticed Daniel at the door and invited him into the hang-out the guys used to get away from their girls. A private club they called it. Daniel pulled up a chair and began to chat it up with the princes.

Daniel felt extremely comfortable in the guys’ hang out and decided to ask for some girl advice from the best of the best, he thought. “How do you know if it is love or not?”

Prince Charming, the most famous of the princes was the first to answer, “You just know. For me, it was love at first sight. After our first dance, I knew she was the one I wanted to be with for the rest of my life.”

Prince Erik added, “And you’ll go to the ends of your kingdom to find her. Once you have met the girl of your dreams, all others just seem to not exist any longer.”

“But what if she’s not the girl? How do I know if I just want to, you know?” Daniel felt the need to censor himself in front of all these real characters.

The Beast laughed as he responded, “We know what you mean, no need for censorship behind closed doors. Erik has a daughter with Ariel. How do you think that happened? Look, you let her go and she came back. Just like Belle did to me. I knew that she loved me when she came back to the castle with me while I was still in my hideous state.”

The group of princes exchanged stories about their adventures with their princesses, they laughed, joked, and drank lots of beer. Daniel became one of the guys and was invited back at any time he wanted to get away from his girl.

 

Back at the hotel, Daniel was content with his decision to pursue Kim, or whatever her real name was, he thought. He made reservations at his hotel for lunch and ordered some flowers to be at the table for them. He was going to make a good impression since it would be the first time they had talked since he left for California.

 

The next morning, Daniel got up and took a swim at the pool. He thought the bit of exercise would lift his energy. He had been nonstop since he had become part of the Disney family. Back in his room, Daniel checked his email after his swim. There was an email from Roy that read:

 

Good Luck with your date today. Hope everything works out okay. Sorry, it took so long to get her back to you.

Roy

 

It made Daniel happy to see that Roy was living up to his side of the bargain and the email reminded him that Kim was just a few hours away. He was a bit nervous and tried to keep his thoughts away from the fact that he wanted to bring her up to his room. He was going to be a gentleman and wait.

Daniel picked out a nice clean shirt, with no stains. He realized that his wardrobe could use a little help. He thought about calling Iger’s secretary, Marcia to help him with that. His decision changed and he added: “Get a secretary” to his “to-do” list.

Daniel arrived at the restaurant a bit early, still nervous. The restaurant was a buffet, which had really tasty food. He chose the restaurant so he could see what kind of girl he was getting. Was she going to be the dainty salad eating girl or would she grab some prime rib and go to town? He was hoping for the latter.

The flowers were already on the table in the corner. It was a popular restaurant with the families because Disney’s most famous characters always stopped in for photo ops with the guests there. Daniel waited for his redheaded cutie to arrive.

She did and right on time. She came over to the table and complimented him on his restaurant choice, “I love this place. They have the best prime rib and pork chops here.”

Daniel was relieved that she was a beef eater too.

The two of them enjoyed the great food and each other’s company. Daniel filled Kim in on all the stuff that he had done over the past month.

Kim told Daniel about her adventures while he was away too, which Daniel thought was a bit weird. If Roy was correct and she was not Kim Possible, why did she have stories?

Daniel did not know whether he wanted her to be real or just a cast member pretending to be Kim. If she was just a cast member then maybe she might be a little mental since she was talking about fighting crime. If she were Kim Possible, Daniel had to figure out if he would want her to continue the dangerous lifestyle.

As they sat there talking about everything and anything, the waiter came over to the table and sat a plate in front of Daniel with a box on it, “Compliments of the Chef.”

Daniel looked up to see Mickey Mouse dressed as a chef over by the food. Mickey waved at Daniel. He opened the box, inside was a diamond ring. He looked back over at Mickey, accompanied by his friends, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy. All of them were giving Daniel the thumbs up. It was like they were giving Daniel the green light.

Kim asked, “What’s in the box?”

Daniel stood up from his chair and kneeled on one knee in front of her. He opened the box in her direction, and she let out the excitement that she tried to contain.

Daniel asked, “Will you marry me, Kim Possible?”

He pulled the ring from the box and she held out her hand to accept his proposal, “Oh, Yes! Oh, Daniel. You are my prince.” She agreed to become his wife.

They hugged each other; Daniel saw that Roy had joined them for the occasion as he stood next to Mickey with a smile on his face. Roy finally approved.

The restaurant celebrated the engagement of Daniel Disney and his future bride, who was not dressed in her Kim Possible action wear. The guests had no idea that the new Disney family member was engaged to one of the characters. Daniel and Kim were excited.

One guest came over to the table to congratulate them, “Congratulations! I can see that you are meant to be together. I hope you will be happily ever after. Like the fairy tales.”

Both Daniel and Kim thanked her for her kind words.

 

The next few days, Daniel and Kim were inseparable, except at night when the two returned to their separate places. Kim had moved out of the apartment that she shared with Ron. Roy put her up at the Saratoga Springs Vacation Homes until after the wedding. Ron had moved into the room with Kim as they reconciled their problems, which naturally ended when she could be a part of Daniel’s life. Kim and Ron were best friends and Daniel wanted to make sure that problem was fixed.

He was still unsure about the whole “Kim Possible” thing. He knew it would have to come out in conversation eventually. Daniel knew it needed to be sooner.

One night while having dinner, Daniel decided to ask the question. “What’s your real name?”

“Huh?” she replied as she did not understand what Daniel asked.

“Your name? I only know you as Kim Possible. And if we are getting married, I need to know. I can still call you Kim since you’re used to it.”

Kim laughed, “Silly, it is Kim. Okay, It’s Kimberly. I don’t have a superhero name. I just use Kim.”

“No! I mean, come on. What is your real name?” Daniel insisted.

“I swear it’s Kim Possible. You wanna see my ID?” Kim pulled out her id. It read Kimberly Ann Possible.

“Did you have your name changed?” Daniel asked.

“Nope, the name my parents gave me,” Kim said with confidence.

Daniel asked Kim about her family. “Well, my father’s name is James. He is a rocket scientist. My mom’s name is Ann. She is a brain surgeon. I have two twin brothers, who are younger than me. Tim and Jim. I call them the Tweebs.”

Daniel responded, “That makes sense why you could figure out all that science stuff at that lab we saw.” Daniel was a little impressed, but at the same time, he was apprehensive in believing her. Even if she was Kim Possible, her smartness almost made him feel a little self-conscious.

After their conversations, Daniel went back and checked what she said against the documentation that he found online about the cartoon. She must have memorized everything about the show, so she could live it in real life.

 

The duties at the Walt Disney Company began to call on Daniel. He knew that eventually, the fun would have to stop, and he would have to get back to his new job. Daniel was going to be leaving Orlando for a while to begin his tour of all the parks around the world. Kim was a bit sad that Daniel was leaving. She was safe though, as Ron had already begun the planning of the best day of Kim’s life.

As a goodbye gift, Kim asked Wilbur for a favor. Since Daniel agreed to be part of Disney, Wilbur changed his mind about Kim. She wanted to use Wilbur’s time machine to take Daniel to meet his father. According to many characters, Walt would check in from time to time to see how everyone got along. Walt used the time machine to travel from the past to the future with Wilbur’s help. Wilbur knew Walt would approve of the mission, which was why he agreed to help.

They did not tell Daniel where they were taking him, but they mentioned that it would greatest gift he could get. Daniel did not hesitate. The three of them traveled to a faraway land, as Wilbur called it, to meet the most awesome man in history. When they arrived, Daniel stood in amazement by the beauty of a world that seemed to straight out of a cartoon, a place with rolling hills, streaming rivers, and a sky that was never filled with clouds.

“Where are we?” Daniel asked.

“The most wonderful place your imagination could take you,” Wilbur said.

Just as they jumped out of the time machine, a man walked up to the craft. Daniel could not believe who was standing in front of them. It was Walt, himself.

“Welcome, Daniel,” Walt said as he gave Daniel a great big hug. Daniel was a little apprehensive in hugging a man that was supposed to be dead but was standing in front of him. He hugged back.

“Are you real?” Daniel asked.

“I know what you are thinking, my son. How can I be here, right?” Walt began to walk and motioned for the group to follow. “It is simple. Magic and dreams. I’m Walt Disney. I can create the illusion of about anything and you’re a dreamer, so it is easy for you to see what I created for you. You just need to forget about all the things you learned in school, like science, and feel what is in your heart.”

It was hard for Daniel to let go of the differences between what was logical and what could be possible with a little imagination. He tried. Walt stopped and faced Daniel. With a kind smile on his face, Walt said to Daniel in a stern voice, “Stop fighting your imagination. Dreams do come true if you believe.”

They arrived at a picturesque castle right out of a fairy tale. “Welcome to my home,” Walt announced to the group. The castle was just as anyone could imagine. Kim was in awe over the size and beauty.

She leaned over to Daniel and whispered, “Can we get a castle after we are married?”

Walt overheard her comment, “Oh yes. And congratulations are in order. Have you set a date for the wedding?”

Daniel quickly replied, “No!”

Walt chuckled, “In our world things like that happen overnight. You got a great girl on your hands there, Daniel. Don’t let her get away by stalling.”

“I won’t,” Daniel assured Walt. He grabbed Kim’s hand.

As they continued to walk through the house, Walt mentioned they had company, “I took the pleasure of inviting your aunt and uncle to dinner with us.”

He opened the door to a large living area. The company stood up, as Wilbur exclaimed, “It’s Roy and Edna.” Wilbur ran into the room to give hugs to everyone.

In the room was Walt’s wife Lillian, Walt’s brother Roy and his wife Edna, and Walt’s other daughter Sharon. Walt had brought all the family to the castle for dinner with Daniel and his friends. Everyone sat around the living room. They talked and exchanged stories about the “good ol’ days” as Walt called them.

Everyone had followed Daniel’s childhood and was so happy that he decided to follow in his dad’s footsteps at Disney. Although many things had changed at Disney after Walt had died, Walt insisted that he was there the whole time as a whisper in the ears of the animators and Imagineers at the company.

Listening to Walt discuss Disney and how it had changed, Daniel had so many questions to ask him but did not how or where to start.

Kim had questions of her own too. This was the first time she was meeting him face to face. “I need some help on a few things if I can pick your brain a little bit,” Kim asked. Walt agreed. “What is Shego’s weakness? I need to stop her once and for all if I am going to get married, you know. I can’t keep fighting crime my whole life.”

Daniel seemed a little annoyed that Kim was still on the whole living as a crime-fighting superhero. Walt smiled at Kim, “Fighting crime is who you are. Think of your life as you did in high school. You were a cheerleader and a crime fighter. You will just be exchanging the cheerleader for Daniel’s wife.”

In amazement, Daniel asked. “What you are saying is this girl, right here in front of us, is truly a crime fighter and I’m gonna marry her?”

“I created her for you.” Walt explained to him, “She is exactly what I knew you would want. Pretty, strong, independent, and the kind of girl that would keep you in line.”

Kim smiled, “I’ll keep him in line, alright.”

 

After a wonderful evening of dinner and conversation, they said their goodbyes. Walt walked them to the time machine. “Daniel, just because I am not there with you every day, know that I am only a time machine away.”

That made Daniel happy to know that Walt would be close and would be watching over him. Walt waved goodbye as the craft took off and flew out of sight. Daniel, Kim, and Wilbur returned to the present day.