The Bird Came Back
I have written the first chapter of this little story, which takes place not long after the events of Birds of a Feather. My challenge to you is: write the next chapter.
Note: it helps to have seen Tortuna and Birds of a Feather, so you understand what Bubblehead is.
The Bird Came Back
Chapter One: Chicken Marinated (by Kat)
The Iron Falcon, pirate ship commanded by the Plitsky Captain Kidd, drifted deep in the Empty Zone, far away from charted space. On purpose. Half the known galaxy was on the lookout for the Falcon. The other half were actively searching.
At the moment, the crew was running the ship without their captain. The fearsome Kidd, scourge of the spaceways, was locked in his cabin with all the ship's alcohol, his pet Squeegie, and his latest prize, who had put him in this position to start with. Faced with being the most wanted sentient in the galaxy, Kidd had elected to get drunk. Preferably so drunk he would mutate into a new life form, one *not* in trouble with the Crown, the Black Hole Gang, Jackie Subtract, Daisy O'Mega, and the Galaxy Rangers.
"Lesh shee..." An already fairly pickled Kidd picked up a bottle. "Aenth wodka..." He poured the contents into a large antique tankard, then chose another. "Dashian whishkey...Beeshushian shpishts..."
"The DNA helix twirls round and round, round and round, round and round..." With a flapping of wings, Bubblehead the Memory Bird landed on the rim of the mug.
"Wow. Chemical composition equals A2321 x DJ49 co2 megaherzt with a cherry on top."
"Oh, whash do you know, you Bubble-Bshain!" Kidd swatted at the three Bubbleheads in front of him, but his aim was off, and he swept the five Squeegies on his table onto the floor instead.
"Yipe! Hey, watch it!" Squeaked the tiny monkey. Chittering angrily, Squeegie leaped onto Kidd's head, and scolded.
"Hhrrmmmmmmmmmmm...." Kidd slumped. He needed a drink. Oh wait, he had one. He took a slug from the tankard.
"You realize that stuff has more kick than the rocket fuel in the emergency tanks on this barge." Bubblehead hopped around the table. "It might dissolve your insides."
"Sho What? Here, live a lishtle." Kidd grabbed Bubblehead, and dunked him into the mug.
"Waa...." There was a distinct "glubbing" sound, as the memory bird thrashed around, and finally emerged, smoke rising from his head.
"Whoa...*ahoy*," he slurred, sparks flying from his eyes. "The helix spins on round and round, round and round..." Bubblehead began warbling again. Kidd joined in, causing Squeegie to clap his hands over his ears, and retreat to a shelf, where he watched in disaproval.
"Oh the Plago punches shmack shmack shmack, shmack shmack shmack, shmack shmack shmack...! Kidd kept time by pounding the table, bouncing Bubblehead up with each slap. "...The Plago punches shmack shmack shmack, all around the town!" Kidd threw his mug for emphasis, drenching Squeegie. The enraged fuzzball leaped onto Kidd's chest, scolding at warp speed.
"Drunk!" he chittered. "As skunk! Bad bad bad! No *booty*!" This seemed to be Squeegie's main complaint.
"Well, the lash ideh didn't go sho whell..."
"So sell bird! Get Booty!"
"Thash why we're in thish mesh, isn't ish?"
"Sell to right customer!"
"Oh yeah? Like swho?"
The console chose that moment to beep. Bubblehead kept singing. Kidd glared at the light, willing it to go away. Instead, the console beeped again. Kidd hit it.
His gunnar's image blinked on the screen. "Captain?" The green reptilian looked condtrite. Sorry to bother you, but we've captured a trading vessel. Do you want to inspect it?"
"Trashindg Wesheel? Oh, shure, what the hell." Kidd staggerred out, Squeegie and Bubblehead on his shoulders. Bubblehead continued singing, changing tune every time Squeegie hit him.
"The Queen of the Crown goes..." "The lycan went out on a chilly night..." "This old plago, he played two..." Kidd ignored it. He just staggered into the bridge, where the trader's captain, a squat, two-headed Mokuv trembled between guards, arguing with himself.
"I told you, Leon. 'Stay out of the Empty Zone', I said. 'It's too dangeous', I said. But do you ever listen to me...?"
"Oh, shut up, Neon," the second head snapped. "There's no sense whining about it now."
"Sho, thish is all the crew of our prishe?" slurred Kidd. He focused his blurry eyes on the prisoner. "Shay, don't I know yoush?"
"Well, we do get around..."
"It's a small vessel, Captain," Gunnar cut in. "Not much in the way of cargo, but we might get something for the ship."
Kidd nodded. After awhile, he made himself stop.
"Shay, you're trashders, aren't you?" He asked Leon/Neon.
"Why, yes. We trade fine trinkets and games, novelty items and such, at fair prices," exclaimed Neon.
"We have the cheapest prices of any trader!" added Leon.
"Oh, goosh, good." A plan was forming in Kidd's pickled brain. If he could just get rid of the bird, and make someone else the target...
He grabbed Bubblehead, who protested. "Whash do you shink you'd get fer thish?"
Leon/Neon peered at the bird. "Does it do tricks? We could get 700 credits for a trained bird on the free market."
"Oh, shure, shure. Lostsh of trishks. Makes a good pet. Houshbroken, too." His eyes glittered "Shall we mashe a deal?" The Mokuv nodded eagerly.
"Tell you wash. You buy this bird from me, and I lesh you and your shipsh go. You can shell it, and we'll call ish even. Deal?"
"A most agreeable arrangement, wouldn't you say, Leon?"
"Oh yes, Neon, quite good. You have a deal, Mr. Kidd." They shook on it.
"Here then." Kidd thrust the bird into their hands. "Now, gish going, before a shange my minds."
Neon/Leon scurried off, barely believing their luck. Kidd's gunner looked at him strangely. "Are you sure about this, Captain?"
"Oh Yesh! Anyshing to get rid of that bird, and all the tshouble it caushes! Now, if you'll excushe me," Kidd spun around. "I'm going to go shelebrate!"
He took three steps, and fell flat on his beak. Squeegie chittered sadly. Gunnar shrugged, and called for the burliest of the crew to pick the snoring Kidd up, and carry him to his bed. Squeegie bounced into the Captain's chair, watching the trader fly away.
"Good riddance!" he squeaked.
To Be Continued...?
Epilogue (by Ann)
"That 's impossible! You don't said that they said that I...?!!!" Doc jumped up when Goose emptied a huge paper box onto the desk.
"Sorry, Doc," grinned the ST, "but QBall really wants you to reconstruct this piece of poultry."
"But it was a walking malfunction!" screamed Doc.
"Hey." Goose held up both hands in front of his body. "I have just delivered."
Doc shifted frustrated through all the remnants and pieces and splinters of Bubblehead that lied in a chaotic heap in the box. Then he saw something new to him... something interesting. A gap in the main section well hidden under the long shirt that now hung in shreds. He drove a screwdriver into the gap and tore it open. An old yellowed piece of paper fluttered on his desk. Doc took it and needed a while to decode the scribbled text:
...the old bitch fired me! Me, the best technician for memory birds, just because I said that I need a little more payment since the daily costs have raised that much! And not enough! She commanded me to finish my work before I have to leave the palace forever! HA!! Let's see, how she 's going to come clear with my last present to her grateful MAJESTY!... Quirian Drooledge...
"I really should rebuild it as a special present to QBall for giving me this job." Doc thought.