THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 456

“You’re a fluke!  You’ve taken over the Syck Monkey’s job!” Labaguette exclaims.

“He collects for himself.  It’s his world, his Alibaba cavern.  I collect for everyone, for the greater good of all.  My world is made of lists, receipts and items in exchange for more.”

“Yeah right!” the Captain says as the Insatiable Princess shudders and the ropes unfold some more out of the deck before straightening towards the disappeared shuttle, but no one takes notice.

“We work together.”

“Why would the Syck Monkey steal from you?”

“Synchronicity.”

“Huh?”

“A falling egg.  A fortunate mismatch over place and timing.  One precious egg.  Caught it falling from Syck Monkey’s cavern though I did not know this at the time.”

“We’re out of here,” the Captain says, “we don’t need to get involved.”

Upon those words, the King-of-all-Things, who is not one to chew his words for too long, points to the platform and a tsunami approaches fast, with a few tornadoes following at a short distance behind.

“All right, all right, all right!” Captain Traumatic concedes, his pupils darker than they’ve ever been.

“This won’t do, Captain!” Birdseye exclaims.

At that exact moment, the ropes straightened to such an extent that solidify, to the exception of one, pulling the Insatiable Princess with them, towards the disappeared Monkeys and shuttle.

Then, the loose rope slaps King U off balance, and he falls onto the platform below.

In no time, the Insatiable Princess and its remaining crew are out of sight.

“Synchronicity, again!” the King-of-all-Things says, pulling a fishing rod out of his cloud, throwing towards King U before hanging it in the air, pondering this fateful catch.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 455

“I shall lead you all and my Princess to the Syck Monkey, right here, right now.”

“Not so fast,” the King-of-All-Things says, “I extended my courtesy to having you parked here on this placid oceanic platform.  You have become aware of my existence and this will not do.”

“We must go,” the Captain reiterate, “I’ve no time for fools.”

“Give me your fool and you will be free to go.”

“He is free and isn’t for sale.”

“You’ll be allowed to negotiate with the Syck Monkey if you leave him here.”

“Negotiate what?”

“One of the Three Monkeys in exchange for your King.”

“You’re friend with the Syck Monkey.  There’s no need for negotiations.  What’s your agenda?”

“He stole something from me some time ago.  I need to retrieve it.”

“What did he steal?”

“A truth.”

“What truth?”

“A flag.”

“Yes?”

“It warns anyone, any traveller passing by caught catching an over-extended glimpse of this platform’s horizon that they may be caught in a permanent and infinity time loop.”

“And that you won’t help them?”

“And that all that belongs to them will be extracted from them and retained here for accountancy and accounting purposes, including their lives.”

“Really?”

“This is the end of all things and beyond.  All that is lost here and beyond becomes lost forever, irretrievable, unfathomable, elusive, real and unreal all at the same time.  I help all those who seek the lost forever & beyond when they do, at any cost, even their lives, if they can and if they insist.  I hold a list of all that belonged to them and that could not transgress the laws of this last frontier.  It’s in your interest: I can stop all you from leaving.”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 454

“—What the heckety-fuck?” the Captain wonders as the approaching shuttle hovers a few meters above the Insatiable Princes with three white, large elastic ropes tightly wrapped around it and a large white Monkey with gold speckled fur standing on the tip of it.  This Monkey’s stature is impressive and if he weren’t so calm, you could swear you could hear him talk and give orders.  And on one such mute signal, three smaller monkeys with golden antennae swing about and settle on his shoulders before being launched into the skies, helped by the elasticity of the ropes, pulling the shuttle with them at high speed, the four of them disappearing into the darkness and beyond, as if propelled by a giant slingshot.

“The shuttle wasn’t falling!” the Captain affirms, “unless the legend has it wrong.”

“Legends can never be altered,” the King-of-all-Things remarks, “there’s catching and catching: if you’re not catching it falling, you retrieve it before falls.”

“We must follow them,” the Captain says, “all aboard, to your posts!”

“They’re gone,” King U. remarks, “there’s no trace of them.  We can’t—”

As he speaks, the insides of the Insatiable Princess reveal themselves slowly by lurking out of the deck’s exits, white, luminescent ropes smelling, sensing and assessing the air and their circumstances.

“—The ropes will follow their makers and masters,” Birdseye says, his dark goggles looking darker than usual.

Captain Traumatic descends on the deck, firmly tied to his ship before catching one of the white, Monkey made ropes and securing himself with it.

“Why?” Labaguette asks.

“For security, safety and speed.”

“Speed?”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 453

“Don’t give us doom Birdseye!” the Captain interrupts, “this isn’t the time.  If you wish to say something, say something nice or I’ll see you in hell.  The shuttle is five minutes from landing.  It brings news from Earth.”

“It’s a ploy, it’s a distraction.  It’s a war device.  We must either disappear or that thing to be made to disappear,” King U says, “free me from these ropes, I must be able to escape.  I could float you said?”

“It’s a space vehicle,” Labaguette says with some pride, “from our planet.”

“How can you tell?” King U asks.

“Aside the three Monkeys behaving strangely, you do know that I know what I know through knowing what I need to know.  This is who I am,” the Captain answers.

“He is correct,” Birdseye adds.

“You’re no different than before,” King U affirms.

“I swallowed a multitude of worlds.  I am changed in many ways though I have yet to become acquainted with this aspect.”

“There is no such thing as salvation at this end of the Universe and beyond,” the King-of-all Things maintains, “from now on, I shall rule beyond what is contained and limiting.  From now on, you may call me: “The King-of-all-things-and-beyond.”

“A new self-allocated title, huh?”

“A new protocol.  Nothing more, and nothing less.”

“And I am no fool,” King U says, “one needs a Court, or at least two of kind to crown and entitle.”

“And you shall be my fool for as long as it lasts.”

“Lasts?  What should last?”

“This Kingdom, you and I—”

“—You can’t keep me here, I shall—”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 452

“It’s approaching,” the Captain says, “clear the deck!  Give it some space!”

“Space for what?” King U asks.

“To land.”

“I see no land, only a—”

“—a ship must ship on another ship, this ship.  We must welcome it.  It brings good news.  I know.”

“There’s no room on the Insatiable Princess,” King U say as Labaguette nods. “How—”

“—What’s this behind it, hopping from star to star, infinitely small?”

“Their father.”

“Birdseye!”

“You might try and float,” the Captain suggests.

“The Syck Monkey?” King U asks.

All turn towards the bright spot moving fast behind the rocket.

“The rocket isn’t falling, it is coming towards us,” the Captain says, “it cannot be The Syck Monkey.

Three Monkeys climb atop a mast as if drawn to a magnet.

“Their father,” Birdseye repeats, standing up.

“He only catches the falling,” the Captain says.

“The fallen is included,” The King-of-All-Things adds.

“This may be the bottommost dump there is,” Labaguette remarks, perching on his saviour’s shoulder, “but we’re only here temporarily, we’ve nothing to do with the fallen.”

“Consider this,” the King-of-All-Things says, “this universe is that of nowhere and everywhere all contained within.  You are at the top and at the bottom of everything and your right stretches until it reaches the far left.”

“Were we to fall a little further, we would find ourselves at the top of everything,” King U says, “I understand.”

“When one reaches this Kingdom,” the King-of-all-Things maintains, “one cannot fall beyond it and legitimately acquires its status: the fallen.”

“Recovery Space Shuttle is getting near, clear the deck!” the Captain orders.

“It’ll never make it,” Birdseye states.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 451

“It’s as good a dead end as you make it.  There is no for concern,” The King-of-All-Things states.

“There is an opposite to all things,” King U says.

“I’m the King-of-All things and that’s that.”

“There’s a ‘beyond’.”

“Beyond is contained within all things.”

“Restrained?”

“LET ME OUT!” Labaguette screams, “LET ME OUT!” as King U, relinquishing kingly ways and protocol launches onto the King-of-All-Things, throws one potent punch straight into his face bringing an end to nonsensical arguments.  Now, the King-of-All-Things loses balance and falls inside the supporting cloud underneath his richly adorned throne.  King U shoves his hand inside the cloud above to retrieve Labaguette and, as the King-of-All-Things attempts to emerge from below, the predominant fool within King U prepares to attack him with his wand, jingling bells, roaring like an endangered species in an Universe where all creatures and things matter.

While madness hovers within this group, in a universe all of its own, and not too high in the sky above them, a small rocket flashes its blue and red lights.

“A sign!” King U-the-fool exclaims while three monkeys wake up from their slumber growing golden antennas as they get back onto their feet, jump onto King U-the-fool, attach him to the mast before whistling into the air, without emitting a single sound, their golden antennas shining intensely, transmitting without signalling.

“Recovery Space Shuttle no 593 – CT mission”, the Captain reads, “this isn’t the first time…”

“We must decide on punishment,” the King-of-all-Things says, ignoring any sign that the surrounding circumstances have altered, safely out of his cloud, trying to recover a red jewel encrusted into his forehead.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 450

“You?  A pirate versed in the art of diplomacy.  Some trump card!  Besides, the Syck Monkey’s children don’t speak.  They hear, they see, they smell, they scream and they sense.”

“He’s is their father and mother.  He can communicate.  So can I.”

“Funny,” the King-of-All-Things, says, “the Syck Monkey and I have an understanding too.”

“Do you know where he is?”

But the Captain’s stomach inflates and his jacket’s buttons pop one by one before landing and chiming onto the ship’s wooden plank.  Then, his feet lift off and he begins to float leisurely, a feather in the making, except he is now very round and he is no bird.  All look in surprise, unable to utter a single sound.  Then, the Captain grabs a mast in time before becoming lost in space.  He settles on a small post above the deck, attaching himself with a rope.

“Aaahh, weightlessness!” he exclaims, “I can take this.  I will never fall again.  Will Birdseye be able to fly?”

“Maybe, who knows?” the King-of-all-Things answers.

“Well,…”

“Well what?”

“What of the Monkeys?”

“The Monkeys require patience.”

“You can’t do anything about them and you don’t believe they’ll ever be able to able to wake up,” King U affirms.

“I didn’t say such thing.”

“I read your mind.”

“You’re presuming.”

“You realise who they are, don’t you?”

“And how useful they are to have aboard the Insatiable Princess?” the Captain continues.

“I’m the King-of-all-Things, sooner or later it’ll all work out.  I repeat: their father and I are friends.”

“Call him!” King U commands.

“It doesn’t work like that.”

“This is the end of the line, isn’t it?” the Captain asks.

To be continued…