The disclaimer saying that I don't own any Galaxy Rangers characters has gone out for the night. I just had this fun idea. Who says Commander Walsh can't have a night out? Fate, that's who!
"THE WASTELAND?" Doc whined. "You want Gooseman and I to hunt down the Black Hole Gang for the next three days in the Wasteland? That's the military's toxic dump in outer space! I'll get radioactive slime on my shoes!"
"Be that as it may," Commander Walsh gave him a look. "There have been reports of the Black Hole Gang scavenging around there looking for more weapons. It seems they didn't learn their lesson the last time which is also the theme around here!"
"Guess you're still a bit miffed about the pie fight in the commissary the other day huh?" Doc gulped.
"Yes but I think a few days with you two away from BETA will help me get over it," Walsh gave him a look. "Which leaves the question Gooseman what the devil are you going to do about that stupid bird of yours?"
"I'm leaving him with Buzzwang and Q-Ball," Shane replied.
"Good luck with that," Walsh groaned.
"Hey you know what they say?" Doc smiled. "Fourteen times the charm."
There was a beep on the intercom. "Sir your reservations at the Starlight Room have been confirmed," A male voice spoke.
"The Starlight Room?" Doc raised an eyebrow. "That's the fanciest restaurant in the city near BETA. What gives?"
"I am going out tonight," Walsh coughed. "On a date with Ambassador Magdella Domani."
"You're what?" Shane did a double take.
"A date Gooseman," Walsh gave him a look. "You do know what that is right?"
"Yeah but you?" Shane blinked. "I'm sorry I just…"
"Gooseman I am old, not dead!" Walsh snapped. "I do occasionally enjoy the company of an attractive woman from time to time!"
"I didn't mean that! I just…" Shane backed away. "I have to go now!" He couldn't get out of the room fast enough.
"Smooth Goose," Doc chuckled as he followed him.
"Okay so I panicked," Shane snapped as they walked down the hall. "I mean…This is Commander Walsh we're talking about! I just…I never thought…"
"Never thought he was what? Human?" Doc gave him a look.
"I know it sounds crazy but…It's just I've known him all my life and I've never…" Shane shrugged. "It's just weird for me."
"Interesting," Doc thought to himself.
"What?" Shane asked.
"Well it's clear that you do see Walsh as a father figure and a lot of kids have trouble imagining their parents dating…" Doc began.
"Okay now you are headed into dangerous territory here," Shane growled.
"Now Gooseman, just because your Daddy's going on the dating scene there's no need to get jealous," Doc snickered.
"You want me to chase you around BETA and force feed pie down your throat again Doc?" Shane snapped. "Because that's how we got into this mess in the first place!"
"Oh yeah the Wasteland…" Doc groaned. "And I just got these new boots too!"
"I have to say Joseph, this meal was exquisite," Ambassador Magdella Domani smiled. The Italian woman with long black hair was wearing a stunning red dress and gold necklace and earrings.
"First meal I've had in a long time that didn't involve pompous windbags speaking for hours on end," Walsh smiled as he sat in his dress uniform across the table from her. "No offense meant."
"None taken," Domani smiled. "I'm afraid some of my colleagues are a bit full of themselves."
"I'm glad we did this," Walsh took her hand.
"So am I," Domani smiled. "I'm amazed you were able to tear yourself away from BETA for one night."
"Well Shane was a little shocked but then again he thinks of me as only his commander," Walsh grunted. "I don't think it ever occurred to him that I have interests outside of BETA."
"He sees you more than as a commander doesn't he?" Domani asked. "In fact I think you're quite fond of him yourself."
"I can't deny Gooseman and I have been through a lot," Walsh agreed. "We've grown somewhat close over the years. Especially after Wolf Den."
"I heard," Domani sighed. "You burned a lot of bridges when the Supertrooper Project was revealed. And even more when you chose to keep Gooseman out of the Cryocrypt."
"I had to watch out for him Maggie," Walsh shook his head. "You should have seen him when he first left Wolf Den. He had no idea what to expect from the outside world. He was so ill prepared to be on his own. When I think of all the times he got into trouble…"
"Really?" Domani gave him a look.
"See all these gray hairs?" Walsh pointed to his head. "Gooseman did that to me. And I get more every day. Of course now the other Series Five Rangers and that stupid bird of his contribute more than their share…"
"He's very important to you, isn't he Joseph?" Domani asked softly.
"Yes, he is…" Walsh nodded. "Maggie he's…"
"GET OUT OF MY KITCHEN YOU FEATHERED MENACE!" A very angry French Chef could be heard screaming.
"Cleanup on aisle seven!" A familiar voice chirped.
"Oh no…" Walsh groaned. "No, no, no, God please no!"
"Ooh that looks expensive," The too familiar voice said again.
"One night, just one night away from the Insanity Squad…" Walsh hissed under his breath.. "Is that too much to ask?"
"Hi there!" Bubblehead flew to their table. "Don't mind me. I'm just people watching."
"Apparently it is…" Walsh moaned. "What are you doing here you stupid bird? As if I had to ask!"
"Well since you just did ask I guess you had to," Bubblehead blinked. "I missed you Daddy!"
"Daddy?" Domani raised an eyebrow.
"This bird's programming is completely scrambled!" Walsh groaned. "As if you haven't figured it out!"
"Okay that was not me!" Bubblehead blinked. Buzzwang ran into the dining room covered with pasta. "See! I told you!"
"I'm sorry Commander!" Buzzwang apologized. "But Bubblehead outsmarted me!"
"Imagine that," Walsh gave him a dirty look.
"Sir! I must protest this…" The head waiter walked up to their table. "Do these…Things belong to you?"
"I am a Galaxy Ranger!" Buzzwang was a bit insulted.
"And I am the King of Pasta," The head waiter gave him a look.
"No, he really is," Commander Cain sauntered up to their table. "Then again since they let Walsh run the place they'll let anybody in."
"What are you doing here Cain?" Walsh snapped.
"I had this strange emptiness in my stomach," Cain said. "Then I called up my doctor and he said I had this condition. It's called being hungry. What's your excuse? I didn't think you crawled out of the BETA Cave unless the moon was full."
"I'm on a date…" Walsh hissed. "And Buzzwang was taking this stupid bird back to BETA Mountain where it has an appointment with a large heavy metal object!"
"I do?" Bubblehead blinked. "But I wanted to see who Dad was dating!"
"Don't call me that!" Walsh snapped.
"Well you are a father figure to Commander Gooseman," Buzzwang told him. "Ranger Gooseman does hold you in high esteem."
"Now that is the cutest thing I've ever heard," Cain smirked.
"Here's another thing you should listen to," Walsh gave them a dirty look. "Get lost!"
"Sir my programming has a GPS tracking system so it's very difficult for me to…" Buzzwang began. Walsh gave him a dark look. "Shutting up now sir."
"Aw Dad! Why can't we stay?" Bubblehead chirped.
"Yeah Dad why can't we stay?" Cain asked in a cheerful tone.
"Go away!" Walsh snarled through his teeth.
"You know when you snarl like that, it reminds me of someone," Cain pretended to think. "I'm not sure who, but the resemblance is very similar. Now think, who do we know that sounds like that?"
"Cain!" Walsh snapped.
"Hey! He just sounded like Goose!" Bubblehead chirped.
"SHUT UP BIRD!" Walsh snapped.
"You know he's right, you do sound a lot like Goose!" Buzzwang remarked.
"Isn't it remarkable how much they sound alike sometimes?" Cain went with it, clearly enjoying himself.
"It's uncanny," Buzzwang agreed.
"Unless you want me to demonstrate how alike we are using blasters I suggest that all of you…" Walsh snarled. A loud crash distracted him. "NOW WHAT?"
"Oh I just remembered!" Buzzwang twittered. "I left Q-Ball and Little Zach behind with…"
"EXCUSE ME! COMING THROUGH!" Little Zach was pushing a cart with Dawdle the alien outlaw holding on for dear life.
"AAAAHH!" Dawdle crashed into a table and had salad spill all over him. "And I don't even like salad!"
"DUCK AND COVER! DUCK AND COVER!" Q-Ball ran from a few more alien members of the Black Hole Gang.
"What the devil?" Walsh snapped as he saw the aliens open fire on the restaurant. People started panicking everywhere. "What's going on?"
"We discovered a splinter group of the Black Hole Gang that was planning on kidnapping you and holding you for ransom," Buzzwang said matter of factly. "We overheard them talking as we were chasing down Bubblehead."
"AND YOU DIDN'T THINK THIS WAS IMPORTANT TO TELL ME?" Walsh roared.
"Oh right. I guess that was more important than tracking down Bubblehead," Buzzwang realized.
"YOU THINK?" Walsh snapped as he hid under the table with Domani.
"I guess your Rangers aren't the only ones who bring trouble with them wherever they go," Cain said cheerfully as he whipped out his blaster and started firing away.
"Shut up and start shooting!" Walsh snapped as he pulled out his blaster. "Wait a second! I have an idea!" He saw a chandelier above. When the aliens moved closer, Walsh shot out the chain holding it and…
It crashed on top of the aliens. "Way to bring down the house Joey," Cain grinned. The local police rushed in. "Oh right! Now they show up after we do all the work!"
"We? I'm the one who had to…," Walsh turned to Domani. "Maggie, are you all right?"
"DO I LOOK ALL RIGHT? JOSEPH THIS IS THE LAST TIME I GO OUT TO A NICE RESTAURANT WITH YOU!" Domani yelled as she was covered in food stains. "YOU AND YOUR INSANE FRIENDS HAVE RUINED EVERYTHING!"
"I dunno, I thought it was a blast," Bubblehead chirped.
"Now I remember why I haven't gone out much in the past twenty years!" Walsh growled. "And why I've been drinking more than usual!"