new scene

the changed verse

new scene


The door opened and Ted came in.

“Ted!” said Lily, standing up. “What happened?”

She had been sitting with Robin and Marshall on the couch, watching a movie. Except now none of them were watching anymore; Ted’s appearance was much more interesting. He was soaked from top to toe, his normally bouncy hair plastered to his forehead and his tweed suit jacket pretty much ruined.

They all glanced out the window, but no, the sunny weather and blue skies had not been exchanged for dark clouds and heavy rain.

Ted peeled off the jacket and dropped it on the floor, where it landed with a sloppy, wet sound.

“One of my students Changed,” he said. The shirt beneath the jacket was just as soaked. “Apparently, she can control weather.” He paused. “Or not.”

“What do you mean?” Robin asked, a bit of a giggle to her voice.

“I called on her to answer a question.” Ted’s tone was even, with a strong hint of ‘why-the-hell-did-I-have-to-do-that’ to it. “She, apparently, got nervous.” He took off his shoes and as he turned them upside down, a cascade of water poured out. “She made it rain. Inside. She made it rain in the classroom.”

The others laughed at that and Ted glared at them. “It wasn’t funny! It was a friggin’ tropical storm inside my classroom. I thought I was going to drown.”

Lily was still laughing when she said, “You look like you did.”

“Gee, thanks,” Ted said. “I’m going to take a shower.”

“You sure more water is what you need right now?” Robin asked, still giggling.

Ted crossed the living room to go to the bathroom and had managed almost all the way when his slippery wet socks suddenly lost their grip on the wooden floor. One leg went this way, the other that way – and Ted was falling, crashing, towards the bathroom door. The others watched with the fascination one can only have when something is happening and there’s no way to stop it.

Lily expected there to be a huge crash and maybe some blood.

No sound came; no crash and no curses or cries.

She realized she’d squeezed her eyes shut – and when she opened, she found she could only see the lower half of Ted.

“Ted!” she said, scrambling over to him with Marshall and Robin close behind.

Ted groaned.

“What the—”

Lily, Robin and Marshall all stopped dead in their tracks. They really could only see the lower half of Ted; the rest of him had disappeared into the wall.

With a shaking hand and only the vague memories of a vision keeping her heart from beating out of her chest, Lily opened the door.

She found Ted – or at least Ted’s upper body.



“That is awesome.” The last one was Marshall’s. A wide smile spread across his face. “Dude, you’ve got a walking-through-walls type of power.”

Ted rubbed his head. “What? What are you—holy crap!”

He sat up abruptly and his head went through the wall and came out the other side. Apparently, his ability to pass through things extended not only to walls, but also to his clothes. As he sat up, he left his shirt behind.

“That was weird.”

“I’ll say,” Robin said. “Can you at least keep your pants on?”

“It’s not like you haven’t seen it all before,” Marshall said with a roll of his eyes.

Lily ignored them. “Honey, are you okay?”  She reached out to put a hand on Ted’s shoulder – but found it going straight through him. “Okay, that’s just freaky.”

Ted stared at arm, half-sunk into his skin. “I can’t feel your hand.”

“You probably shouldn’t be sitting with a wall splitting you and Lily’s hand through your shoulder,” Marshall said. “The Change is always fickle at the beginning – you might become completely solid all of a sudden and then you’ll have a wall through your middle. Not the best idea.”

Ted scrambled away from the wall and Lily, sitting on the floor close to the TV.

“And now he’s naked,” Robin said, scrunching up her nose just a little.

“You’ve slept with him how many times?” Lily snapped at her. “He’s got bigger problems than nakedness right now.”

Ted looked a little scared, which was very unusual for him. Really, Lily couldn’t remember the last time Ted had looked scared. He was a positive guy who hadn’t suffered much bad things in life; fear wasn’t something he had to deal with often.

“You should be sinking through the floor too, shouldn’t you?” Robin asked. “I mean, if you’re going through walls and people, why not the floor?”

“I’m trying my very best not to,” said Ted and held out his hand to show that his fingers did indeed sink through the floor.

“Can we do anything to help?” Lily asked.

Ted shook his head. He closed his eyes, looking concentrated. Lily could only assume that he was trying to become solid again – or at the very least, not sink.

She’d only seen enough to know that Ted was alive in the future, so whatever happened, he wouldn’t die from this. It didn’t do much to reassure her, because ‘not dead’ and ‘perfectly all right’ weren’t at all the same and her visions had been annoyingly vague on the subject.

“I feel useless,” Robin muttered.

Lily suspected that her statement hadn’t only to do with the current situation. Now three of them had Changed – and they had pretty cool powers, too, if she got to say so herself – and only Robin and Marshall remained.

Ted was ignoring them, sitting with his legs drawn up to his chest, eyes closed, and he was bobbing a bit up and down through the floor.

Lily stood up. “I’m going to make some cookies.” Cookies and milk, they’d need that once this ordeal was over. She’d call Barney too, ask him if he wanted to come over. They needed to be together in these crazy times; they needed to have each other.

She busied herself in the kitchen while Marshall stayed in the living room to keep an eye on Ted. Robin walked back and forth between Lily and Marshall, looking like she didn’t want to be in the apartment at all.

“We’re out of milk,” Lily said. “Would you mind getting some?”

Robin looked almost too relieved at the chance of leaving. “Sure.”


Robin grabbed her jacket and was out the door in less than ten seconds. Lily shook her head, a little smile on her lips, and grabbed the milk out of the refrigerator. She should probably pour it out, just to make sure Robin didn’t realize Lily’s lie. Then again, Lily wasn’t sure Robin would mind even if she knew.

The apartment smelled deliciously of cookies by the time Ted’s eyes suddenly snapped open.

“I’m solid again.”

“Dude, how do you know?” Marshall asked.

Ted frowned and placed a hand on the floor. “I just—know.” His fingers didn’t sink through. “It’s like a shift in molecules or something. It feels different.”

Lily smiled, coming into the living room with a tray of cookies. “I for one will be very happy if you learn to handle it quickly.”

Ted flashed a smile. “Hey, where’d Robin go?”

“I sent her out to buy some milk,” Lily shrugged. “Ted, honey, I love you dearly, but you should probably put some clothes on.”

Ted turned red and grabbed one of the pillows from the couch. “Sorry.”

He backed into the bathroom and closed the door. Lily chuckled and set the plate of cookies down on the table in front of Marshall.

“I’ll grab him some dry clothes,” she said. “Try to leave some for us, will you?”

“I’ll try.” Marshall gave her an angelic look. She bent down and gave him a kiss.

Robin came back a while later and Ted emerged after a shower in the fresh change of clothes Lily had picked out. They all sat down on the couch, Robin pouring freshly bought milk for all of them.

“Delicious as always,” Ted said, licking his fingers after downing his first three cookies in no time.

Lily smiled. “Thanks. You know, there’s some beautiful irony in your Change.”

“What do you mean?” Ted asked.

Lily grinned around her cookie. “An architect who walks through walls? That’s irony on a serious level.”

But they all had to be thankful – one more of their gang had Changed and Ted’s new power wouldn’t be a problem. They’d still be the five of them. Lily glanced at Marshall, wondering when his Change would occur. She had seen it already and it made her smile. It wouldn’t stop them from being together.

As long as they were together, her and Marshall and Barney, Ted and Robin, they’d be fine.

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