The New Resistance Sinks Its Illegal Clawswritten by ceirrin - inspired by an original artwork from Hausinge
La Resistance was dead.
This should not come as particularly startling information. La Resistance had been dead for a long time; about ten years, give or take.
And it was Stan Marsh's humble opinion that it should have stayed that way.
La Resistance was a hectic tangled mess of fourth grade covert operations, immature jealousy and Terrance and Phillip. In fact, Stan was pretty sure someone might have died (although that was the sort of thing he would have noticed... Right?). At any rate, the whole thing was a jumble of memories that we would, as with most of his experiences in South Park, prefer to forget.
Yet here he was, trudging through a thin slush of snow towards his car. Kyle Broflovski trotted beside him and staunchly avoided his glares. La Resistance was being revived, and Stan knew in his gut the whole thing was going to end badly.
"So explain to me again why exactly you're in the New Resistance?" Stan asked petulantly, reaching for his keys.
"Because," Kyle began as he reached the car door, "the world is a mess, the legal system is a joke, everything in general is just generally a giant clusterfuck, and-" Kyle paused for breath as Stan unlocked his tarnished vehicle. "These are people who understand that and are trying to change it."
Stan mm-hmmed in the manner of one who has heard this repeated to them multiple times and will likely ask again in the foreseeable future to make a point to themselves. His friend rolled his eyes.
"Yeah, whatever dude. You're the one who volunteered to drive me in your piece-of-crap car."
"Hey!" Stan felt the need to defend the honor of an endless source of grief in his life. "I've had this car for over four years and it hasn't died on me yet. That's more than your goldfish can say."
Kyle flushed and his nostrils flared. "That wasn't my fault! How was I supposed to know they can grow mold? They're fucking fish, not loaves of bread!"
Saddened though he was by Ike II's untimely passing, Stan couldn't help but snort. Kyle had stayed the same as he was during their teenage years; fiery, independent, and altruistic to a fault. In contrast, Stan had changed quite a bit. Life experience had shifted his severely cynical nature to an ever-wary pragmatism.
"Well, I guess you learned something that day," Stan said. Kyle groaned and dropped his head into gloved hands.
"Oh my god, don't start. Ike II's demise was a tragic event in my life, not to be treated lightly. Just... Drive."
Their destination was a soggy clearing near an old, abandoned shack. A beleaguered Wendy Testaburger greeted them as they exited their ride, tearing her eyes away from a phone she was holding. "Kyle," she called. And then, "Stan?"
"Yeah, Stan decided to come along, to make sure nothing happened to me. Is that okay?" Wendy stared at Stan, and he willed himself not to blush as a dozen awkward thirteen-year-old kisses welled in his mind. She chewed her lip absently.
"Yeah... It should be fine. Might get a little cramped in the car, though." She blinked blearily and returned to her gadget. Kyle shrugged and departed for the warmth of the automobile. His super-best-friend lingered for a moment to glance at Wendy.
Wendy was still very pretty. She had retained her aura of steely inner strength and was obviously in control of things. But the best phrase to describe her at the moment was probably "hot mess." Her lipstick looked like it had been hastily smeared on and what Stan initially mistook for too much eye shadow was, in fact, dark purple circles around her eyes. One of her hands clutched an energy drink like a lifeline.
"Stan, are you getting in or not? All the heat's escaping," Kyle called, slightly peeved.
"One second, dude!" Stan turned to Wendy. "Aren't you going to... Wait in your car?" He gestured vaguely to a sporty hybrid.
"No," she said shortly. "Cold air. Keeps me alert."
"O... Kay, then." He left for the comfort of his automobile with the moral assurance that he'd tried.
The next to arrive was Eric Cartman, pulling up in an SUV that screamed I'm as safe and expensive as you can possibly get and I only carry one very special person.
Wendy nodded tersely at him and they had a brief verbal exchange which mainly consisted of him smirking and her glaring. As Cartman lumbered towards their car, Stan said, "How early are we again?"
"About two hours."
"Dude! I had to get up at five-" his hissed tirade was cut off by Cartman rapping on the aged glass of the windshield. Stan cringed and, against his better will, unrolled his window.
"Well," Cartman sneered, "if it isn't my very favorite hippie and Jew." He had always had an estimable talent for taking objective nouns and twisting them into insults.
"Just stuff it," Kyle said. "You're too old for this." Cartman's smirk only grew wider.
"But you're never too old to learn the evils of the Jewish race or hypocrisy of hippies who squabble for change but do nothing to instigate it. Actually, why are you here, Stan? I didn't peg you as the type to take such an... active role."
Stan looked away from Cartman. His old almost-friend was at his worst when he was right; and in this case he was indeed correct. Stan had purposefully tried to avoid involvement with the New Resistance and was only tagging along because Kyle mentioned he was going on a "mission," which sounded ominous to Stan's ears.
"Hello Eric," he forced through gritted teeth. "How have you been?"
"Why, I have been just wonderful, Stanley, thank you for asking. Always the more courteous friend. Why can't you be polite like your fuckbuddy, Kyle?" Cartman looked delighted that Stan he played along.
"He's not my fuckbuddy and you aren't my friend," said Kyle.
"Rude as ever, I see. Well, I'm freezing my balls off out here, so I'm going back to my super-luxurious SUV. It's got heated pads, you know. And a DVD player installed."
"You do that, then." Cartman sniffed and proceeded to. "Well, still as fat a fuck as I remember him."
"Did you really think he'd change?"
"... No. He's like the shark of assholes. Being a predatory douchebag has served him well so far, so why bother changing?"
Although their relationship had mellowed over time, Kyle and Cartman had maintained a steady disdain for each other. The heavyset man oozed suffocating self-confidence, enough to gag on.
Stan sensed that his beat-up vehicle would soon have competition on the Pain In My Ass list.
The next to arrive were Craig Tucker, after an hour, and Kenny McCormick, with five minutes to spare.
Craig rolled up in a compact slug bug, checked in with Wendy (who looked to be asleep with her eyes open), and returned to his seat without speaking to anyone else. Stan tried to remember if he was boring, weird, or just a douchebag.
Kenny, dutifully padded with protective gear, came on a motorcycle and grinned at the general area. He then fell off his motorcycle, patted himself down for injuries, walked to the center of the clearing, flirted with a very unresponsive Wendy and made his way towards Stan and Kyle.
Kenny beamed through the glass. "Hey guys! How's it hanging?" Even though he was shouting, his voice was muffled by his helmet. Kyle rolled down the window.
"Hey Kenny. We're doing pretty well. Shouldn't you take your helmet off? It's got to be uncomfortable," said Kyle, smiling back.
Kenny glanced at the clear sky and seemed to consider for a moment. "Yeah, okay," he said, and pulled the orange helmet off the top of his head. His hair was wild in some places and sweat-sticky in others. Stan looked across Kyle and idly took in a face he couldn't recall seeing often.
Even though his teeth were crooked (his little sister's education had always been prioritized over silly orthodontics) Kenny's grin was radiant. Under the gear he wore a patched orange parka which had obviously seen better days.
"We, huh? You guys together yet?"
"No," said Stan and Kyle in unison.
"Just as well. Clyde and I have a bet going. So, fuck if you want, but do it after you're thirty or I owe Donovan fifty bucks." He flitted off to Cartman's car, and Kyle stared absentmindedly after him.
"Okay, we're almost ready!" Wendy's piercing command echoed through the marshy clearing. Everybody climbed out of their respective rides.
"Right, so..." Wendy said, and trailed off. Cartman scoffed and Kyle shot him a dirty look.
"We were ready to go," Craig prodded, unaware or uncaring of the silent battle of wills occurring between the two.
"Oh! Yes. Right. Sorry about that." Wendy shook her head. "We're ready to go, so everybody into Eric's car."
"'EY! What the fuck?! I didn't agree to this, Testaburger! I don't want Kyle's fucking Jew-germs all over my upholstery!"
Wendy ignored his obvious challenge and said simply, "I texted you. You agreed and I have it recorded. So suck it up, Cartman." The man in question started grumbling obscenities about dirty hippies and their hooker tricks.
"If any of you fuckers messes anything up in my sweet ride, I am personally going to find the perpetrator and turn them into fucking chili. Just a friendly warning," Cartman said.
Craig peered into the car, squinting through the tinted windows. "I don't think there's enough room. And there's a fuckton of energy drinks in the trunk." Wendy's lower lip trembled. The hand gripping her energy drink contracted and crumpled the can.
"Thank you Cartman," she hoarsely whispered. Cartman eyed her in the manner a dingo eyes an abandoned baby or a conqueror a falling nation.
"But of course," he said. "We can't have our fearless leader falling asleep on us, can we? Who would ever lead us then?" Everyone looked away uncomfortably except for Kyle, who watched the scene and pressed his lips together.
Kenny broke the tension. "Well, I am freezing to death out here. God, Cartman, let us in already."
"Right, right. My bad." Cartman pressed the unlock button on his keys and clambered into the driver's seat. Everyone else was left to decide who sat where.
"I'm not sitting in the trunk," Craig declared. "That's for little kids, dogs, and abductees." Then he settled in the left side of the backseat and refused to budge. Kenny sat by Cartman since he could tolerate him the most. Kyle whined about claustrophobia so Wendy snapped that she would just take the trunk; he chose the seat second farthest from Cartman and Stan was wedged in the middle of the backseat between Craig and Kyle.
"Okay," Wendy said, resting her head against a crate of energy drink. "Let's go. We don't have all day, people."
"Operation: Reboot is officially underway," Cartman declared, and pulled out of the clearing.
The next few hours passed in silence. Craig had pulled out his laptop from a bag he'd carried into the car and was typing furiously. Kyle looked to be maintaining a planner of some sorts, so Stan was left quietly attempting to move as little as possible. Even Kenny, the most sociable of them, seemed unwilling to strike up a conversation; although he eventually cracked under the oppressive stillness and cleared his throat.
"Hey, would someone hand me an energy drink? I had to get up really early to get here on time."
"Dude, you were almost late!" Kyle exclaimed "You probably woke up twenty minutes before you got there."
Kenny thought for a moment. "Sort of. But the point is that I'm tired and bored, and all I brought with me was my Mom's old copy of Valley of the Penises."
"Wendy, would you pass a can up?" Stan asked. When he received no anwer, he twisted his head back. "Wendy?" The woman in question was snoring lightly with a cheek pressed against the crate of energy drink.
"She's asleep," he reported to the rest of the passengers.
"Thank god," said Craig. "She's been unbearable. At least now she can't bitch at us."
"Wendy's sunk more into this project than you and I combined, Tucker." Kyle was obligated to defend their leader. Craig shrugged and returned to his laptop.
"Well damn, Stan, if Testabitch's out of commission then that means all the more for us," Cartman said. Kenny seemed slightly abject but ultimately at peace with stealing some of Wendy's chemical infusions. Stan turned to Kyle for moral guidance, who ignored him in favor of the planner/manifesto/possibly-a-Mad-Lib paper. Stan succumbed to peer pressure and took three cans from Wendy's stash; one for Kenny, one for Cartman to spare them all from a fit, and one for himself because he got up at 5 o'clock for an organization he didn't even like. Kenny's spirits lifted with the intake of stimulants.
"So what's with you guys?" he asked. Cartman seized the opportunity to talk about himself.
"Well I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm doing great, Kenneth. I've got stocks and potential potential investors, and I've recently been accepted to a business school."
"Dude, I thought you dropped out of business school."
"No, Kenny, I took an undetermined leave of absence because the events in my life were not fortuitous for pursuing a higher education," Cartman said, looking irked. Kyle snorted.
"Just admit you flunked out of college, fatass." The large man's eyes widened as his nemesis struck a lifelong sore spot.
"I'M NOT FUCKING FAT ANYMORE, GODDAMMIT!" Stan's face was smashed into Craig's upper arm as the car swerved erratically. Kyle's supplies flew out of lap.
"What the hell, asshole!" Cartman ignored him and inhaled slowly as the car regained its normal course.
"Well. We've heard all about me. How have you been doing since you didn't go to college?" The already irritated Kyle flushed red.
"I do go to college, dumbass. It's a prestigious online school and it's probably thirty times better than any piece-of-shit institution that would accept you.'
"Your words wound me so," said Cartman in a tone which indicated the direct opposite. "Anyway, if you're going to such a special college, how do you afford to feed yourself with all those pesky fees?"
"Grants. Plus they're, you know, actually glad to have me since I gave a shit about my grades during high school. I take a few odd jobs from home, too."
It was here that Stan, engaged in a passive-aggressive battle with Craig to see what was he was typing, absentmindedly said, "But I bring home most of the money."
There was a moment of silence as five hearts beat as one.
"Mazel tov," said Craig in an attempt to throw off Stan.
"Oh my god, you guys seriously ARE fucking!" cried Cartman.
"NO WE'RE NOT!" Kyle screeched back. "We're not FUCKING or DATING or MARRIED or-Fucking christ, turn the car around Cartman!" The driver, who had been watching Kyle's breakdown with glee, whipped his head back to the front of the car in time to see them careen out of the road and into a snow bank.
Craig instinctively curled around his electronics; Stan's face was pushed for the second time into his arm, Cartman squealed in surprise as Kyle sat primly (he was the only one who bothered to put on the seatbelt) and a yelp and thud were heard from Wendy in the very back.
There was a sickening crack as Kenny, who had been examining the glove compartment, slammed his head on the dash.
Extricating his limbs from Craig, Stan breathed familiar words... "Oh my god, did you kill Ke-"
Kenny jerked his head up. His nose was breeding profusely. "I'm okay," he said in a nasally pitch. "I'm alright."
Cartman moaned with enough anguish to put any anal-retentive germophobic soccer mom to shame. "Okay, that's it. Everyone, GET THE FUCK OUT. Kenny, stop bleeding on my sweet fucking upholstery!"
One by one, they clambered out of the SUV and into the chilled winter air; except for Wendy, who groggily mumbled, "What's going on?"
"Nothing," Stan assured her as he shut car door.
"Oh... Okay then," she whispered, and went back to sleep.
The weather was warmer than when they had first set out, but still brisk. Craig watched pools of steam leak from the others' mouths.
"Well, I'm taking a whiz," Cartman announced and strolled off. Kyle, looking rather frayed around the edges, glared daggers. Stan patted him consolingly on the shoulder and they headed out- presumably to pee, or possibly have sex. It was unclear. This left Craig and Kenny standing in front of the car. Kenny was trying (and failing) to stop the blood dripping down his face.
"If you plug it and tilt your head up, it'll stop bleeding," remarked Craig. He had learned this through years of increasingly ludicrous fights with a certain spastic caffeine junkie that his supposed "friends" orchestrated right up through high school graduation.
Kenny shrugged. "I can heal pretty fast. Nosebleeds aren't usually a huge problem."
Craig said nothing and stared at Kenny, who appeared unfazed.
"Damn Tucker, if you want to jump these poor bones I can't say I blame you, but I don't swing that way."
The other man ignored his jibe and said, simply, "Do you know why I joined the New Resistance?"
"You." Kenny blinked.
"You did know that was a joke, right? 'Cause, I'm flattered, but..."
Craig rolled his eyes. "Not sexually, dumbass. Tweek is on meds."
"Okay? Good for him?"
"No, not good for him. They fuck with the way he perceives things." Kenny tensed.
"Well," he said slowly, "that's interesting. It's nice to catch up on how the kid's doing. What kind of things?"
"Things that a lot of us take as a given."
Kenny's lips quirked and he opened his mouth to speak. "W-"
Craig leaped backwards as a gigantic snowball tore through where his conversational partner had previously stood. As it rolled along its merry way, a patch of faded orange and a faint smear of blood was all that remained of Kenny McCormick.
"Holy shitballs," Craig choked out. Stan, who had been approaching with Cartman and Kyle on both sides (he was most likely acting as a physical barrier) faltered for a moment at the sight and then ran forward. Craig remained staring at the dirtied snow as Stan arrived panting.
"Oh my... Oh my... God... You killed... Ke-"
"No I didn't," Craig said. He couldn't place his finger on why what Stan was saying irritated him so, but it felt like a song that had been so severely overplayed on the radio he absolutely loathed the sound of it. Kyle jogged up slightly less winded.
"You bastard," he said mechanically. Craig eyed him.
Cartman practically crawled to the crime scene gasping for breath. They unenthusiastically waited for him to speak as his bosom heaved. "Fuck, why'd you off Kenny, Tucker? What if we needed him as cannon fodder?"
"I didn't kill McCormick," Craig halfheartedly protested. "There was a... Snowball. You saw it." Cartman considered.
"How'd you get a snowball to kill Kenny?"
"Shut up, Cartman," Kyle said. "Let's just get back in the car." Cartman flipped him the bird and headed for his vehicle. "And," he continued, "I'm driving this time."
Hearing a jingle, Cartman looked behind him to see him smugly holding the car keys.
Kyle was a much better driver than Cartman. Stan knew he suffered from awful road-rage, but since they were taking the road trip less traveled there was no one for him to compete with. Craig asked if they should hold some kind of vigil or shit for Kenny, and Cartman replied that his BFF would have wanted the mission to continue with minimal amounts of pansy-ass whining.
No one spoke as the sun slowly set until Cartman, reading through Kyle's notebooks of records, looked up and said, "We're close to the pickup point."
"The pickup point?" Stan asked. And then, feeling very stupid with the realization he had no idea what the goal of this whole ordeal was, "What exactly are we picking up again?"
"One of our agents," Kyle said. "Craig?"
Craig, who had not detached himself from his laptop since he reentered Cartman's car, spoke out. "Agent Fishticks. Reconnaissance and Recovery. Well balanced abilities all around but particularly skilled in close-quarter combat, espionage, and team participation. Seven successful missions, no failed ones, and an asset value of nine-point-three." Stan gawked at him. "I'm Communications, Marsh. What did you think I was doing this whole miserable time?"
"I don't know, watching crappy episodes of Red Racer or something." Craig's pale cheeks tinged pink and he spared his right hand from the keyboard just long enough to flip Stan off.
"First of all, Red Racer is a fucking classic retro and second of all, you can just fuck off asshole." Stan shrugged and ignored him.
"So who is Agent Fishsticks, anyway?"
"You know him as Jimmy Valmer," a feminine voice replied. Everybody in the car jumped as Wendy sat up, rubbing the sleep out of her eyes. "We sent Jimmy."
Stan's slight alarm at her awakening was quickly surpassed by his curiosity. "The disabled kid?"
"The term is 'handicapable,' Stan, and you'd do best to remember it," Cartman said. "I don't know if you noticed since you and Kyle have always exclusively had your heads up each other's asses, but Jimmy's kind of a badass."
"But why not, I don't know, that weird French kid with the eyebrows?"
"Oh, you mean Ze Mole? Believe me, we tried. He wants nothing to do with us. He claims we got him killed and never even apologized. Keeping that in mind, I kinda figure we're better off with Jimmy. Mercenaries are always fucked in the head, one way or another. Oh, hey, we're here!"
Kyle pulled in at the edge of a frozen pond, reminiscent of the one which characterized a fair amount of their childhood memories. "Did you stock the night-vision equipment?" he asked Cartman.
Surprisingly, Cartman responded with moderate civility. "Yep. They're in the glove compartment, if Kenny didn't filch 'em." Stan reflected on the beauty of spy equipment bringing mortal enemies together as he opened the glove compartment. Inside were two binoculars and a periscope. "The periscope is mine, by the way."
"Seriously? A periscope? God, Cartman, you're such a weirdo," said Kyle as Stan passed him a pair of binoculars.
Stan, Kyle, and Cartman got very tired of scouting very fast. To alleviate the boredom, Cartman had the bright idea of everybody sharing their reasons for joining the New Resistance; mostly so he could ridicule them.
"As a show of faith," he announced, "I will tell my story first."
"We already know it," said Kyle. "You're a power-hungry bastard looking for a leg up."
"Nuh-uh! I mean, yes, I'm meant for bigger and better things, but the New Resistance does truly great things and I just want to contribute to that..."
"Oh, stuff it Cartman."
"Well if you're so high and holy, Jew, why are you sitting in a crowded car looking for a cripple who probably gets more tail than you?"
"Simple I can't change the world with the law- God knows I tried. So I'm working outside of it and if that entails sitting in a car with a sociopathic fuck who would sell me down the river for a bag of cheesy poofs, so be it."
"Christ you're preachy. Ugh. And how about you, otherfag? You're only here because your boyfriend is, right?" Stan thought about ignoring him, but when Cartman wanted attention resistance was futile.
"I'm here because Kyle is, yeah. I don't even want to be in this car with you people... No offense, Wendy," he added as an afterthought.
"None taken," Wendy amiably said. She had been quietly texting to what could only be assumed to be the higher-ups for the duration of the time since she awoke, and passively listening to the conversations of her companions.
Cartman seemed to clean his act up a bit with the reminder that Wendy was conscious. "Okay then, Craig, you're next. Why is your bitchy ass in our fine, world-changing organization?"
"Because I can't fucking escape it," Craig said in a voice completely devoid of emotion. "No one can."
"And you, Wendy?"
The glow of her phone reflected eerily off of Wendy's cheeks. Her bags had lightened in severity since her naps, but the artificial light made them appear deeper, darker. "I've slept seven hours over the past four days. My motivations should not be in question." She took a sip of an energy drink and cringed. "Ugh, this stuff is disgusting. Hey, why didn't any of you wake me? The higher powers are panicking because I've been out of contact for hours!"
"Because," Craig said, "it was either let you sleep or chew our ears off to escape your nagging, of which you have been giving copious amounts for the past month. This seemed slightly less painful."
"That's what you think," Wendy grumbled, and resumed texting frantically.
There was a brief period of peaceful quiet punctuated by Cartman trying to get a rise out of Craig, and then the passengers of the car were jolted out of their complacency by a sharp rap on his window.
"FUCK!" he screamed, and lunged for Craig in terror. Jimmy Valmer's face was pressed against the glass with a crutch resting next to it.
"H-Hey fellas," he called through the glass. Stan unrolled his window to hear him better and cold flooded in. "Oh, is that St-Stanley? Haven't seen you for a wh... a whi... Haven't seen you for a while."
"Hi Jimmy," said Stan.
"It's Agent F-Fishticks if you don't mind, Stan."
"Great. Got it."
"Not to im... im... imp- impose or anything, but it's awful ch-ch- chilly out here, and..."
"Cartman, let him in already!" Wendy exclaimed. Cartman detached from Craig, mocked her under his breath and opened the door.
"Anytime, Fishticks... That's still my joke, you know."
"Of course," Jimmy replied graciously, and Stan realized that he might really have changed since the last time he saw him.
"Do you have the box?" Wendy asked, and the stutter dropped like Cartman's Health class.
"Right here, Testaburger," said Jimmy, and procured a heavy looking cube attached to a small metal pole. There was blood on one side.
Wendy's eyes bulged and she gaped slightly. "Please, please tell me that you didn't use the objective as a weapon." Jimmy grinned apologetically and Stan took note of a charismatically beaming smile.
"I needed something on shorthand, and my crutches are fractured so it's all I can so to walk with them; let alone fi... fight."
"You were ORDERED to have minimal conflicts, violent or otherwise! In and out!"
"Well, yes, but I ran into Mimzy-"
"Mimzy. Yeah, we go way back. Anyway, Mimzy was working security and he recog... he recognized me, so I had to knock him out –just a bop on the head with the cube, nothing too serious- and then I ran into a few other goons I had to fight, but I mostly got out okay. We should leave as soon as po... As soon as poss... As soon as possible, though."
Wendy rubbed her temples. "Okay. Kyle? Cartman? Stan? Is anyone approaching?" The three peered out into the darkened terrain, and reported an All Clear. Kyle slowly backed the car off of the bank.
"Great. Well done, guys." She inhaled sharply as he phone rang. "Jimmy, put the cube in back with me." Nobody missed the greedy glint in Cartman's eye as the odd, hard device passed by him. "Not then," Wendy sad clearly, "I'm going to be communicating with the powers that be so keep your squabbling to a bare minimum." She proceeded to murmur into her phone secretively as Cartman tried to eavesdrop.
"I'm about to send in a status check that the mission has gone according to plan," Craig announced. "Anyone have anything to add?"
"Stan," Kyle started. "Stan is a civilian. He's an anomaly. That should be noted."
Stan groaned and leaned back in the passenger seat. "Can I possibly express how done I am with all this La Resistance and New Resistance shit?" Kyle chuckled.
"I don't think you can escape it, dude." Stan grunted, choosing to focus on things other than what he suspected was inevitable.
"Message sent to Timmy," Craig said, and Stan jerked upright.
"Timmy? Timmy Burch Timmy?"
"That's the one."
Cartman broke away from cordially chatting with Jimmy to put in, "Dude, Timmy's a fucking savant with tech. Handicapable, remember?" and promptly resumed complaining to his sort-of friend.
"Is there ANYONE who was in my third grade class who ISN'T involved in this stupid idea?" cried the beleaguered Stan.
Kyle thought about it.
"Well, Pip died. And Craig won't let us near Tweek, because he's a nervous mess. It's too bad, because he's actually got some impressive skills sets. And he makes really good coffee." He paused. "But yeah. If you were involved in the original La Resistance, it's pretty much a given that you're going to work your way back here." Craig looked up.
"You really can't win, Marsh. You might as well just suck it up and join on your own terms."
"What, like you did?"
Stan gave Craig an odd look and resumed moodily staring out the passenger window.
La Resistance should not have been brought back, New Resistance or not. In its beginnings it had been a group of idealistic kids who didn't know how the world worked; now it was a few idealists trying to change how things functioned, with some people who simply didn't know what else to do thrown in.
And here Stan Marsh was, one of them.
If Stan was truthful with himself, he had no direction in life. First there was elementary, then next came middle school, then there was high school, and finally there was nothing. He couldn't figure out where he wanted to go, so he just stopped. So he ended up sharing an apartment with his super-best-friend, because living with Kyle was cheap and instilled some sort of diffusive drive.
Now, South Park was trying to suck him back in and he wasn't even sure if he wanted to fight it.
Kyle's head snapped up and the car jerked for a moment and ignored Cartman's vindictive complaints. "What?"
"I'll join the New Resistance. I mean, why bother struggling? I grew up in South Park. I've got experience with this sort of thing."
Cartman's teeth gleamed in the review mirror. "I promise you'll find your time in the New Resistance very... Productive. We're doing great things. For example, you know the cube that our pal Jimmy has so kindly risked life and limb for? That has enough data in it to put us on the underground map for years."
"It's a p-pleasure to have you on board, Stanley," Jimmy said.
Ngh was all the response he got out of Craig. Wendy closed her phone and caught his eye in the review mirror.
"If you're here, you're here for the long haul Stan. Not everything we do is strictly legal and once the New Resistance has sunk it's claws in, it doesn't let go."
"I know," Stan replied. "But I'm pretty sure it's already sunk its illegal claws in, or... Whatever. Anyway, the point is that it was never a matter of if; only a question of when. Even I knew that and god knows I'm not the most clairvoyant."
Wendy nodded wearily and curled up in the backspace. Cartman and Jimmy continued talking, Craig went back to typing and Kyle quietly drove. Stan gazed out his windows at the dreary snow as a long-forgotten refrain danced through his head; and watching his dim reflection in the glass, silently mouthed and though you may die, La Resistance lives on.
If you enjoyed this story, remember to check out the original artwork that inspired it!