THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 478

Imprinted on their suits, in bright shiny fluorescent colours, the letters and symbols of the Nasa Recovery Space Shuttle, CT Mission sparkle and dazzle for all to see, for all to notice.

“Howdy!” Labaguette says, saluting with one wing lifted.

The Fool runs around the cosmonauts, pulling faces, dancing, jingling his wand like a mad sorcerer in trance.

“Enough!” the Captain orders, walking towards them, his brain scanning for answers within: Why the armour? He wonders, Why the helmets?  Inside they look human but if they were to remove their protective gear, what would we find inside?  Are they who they pretend to be?  What do they want?”

But the three cosmonauts stop, stand still and straight, their right arm reaching for their forehead, an unexpected salute.

“This is suspicious,” the Captain thinks as he walks around them, “they don’t know me.  I’m a pirate.  A first rate pirate, a true blue pirate:  known beyond and above all other creatures across space for my…   my rum trade.”

“You’re looking for rum?”

“Are you the Captain of this ship?”

“I’ve plenty of it.  I will negotiate with you once you show us the way out of here.  It isn’t safe.  Are we your prisoners?”

Upon these last words, the middle and taller cosmonaut takes a steps forward:

“Ay, Ay Captain Errol Seth Anectodick, we salute you.”

“You’re mistaken.  I’m Captain Traumatic.”

“Not mistaken.  You are the long lost Captain Anectodick we have been searching for.  See?” the cosmonaut says holding a piece of paper with the face of Captain Traumatic printed on it.

“Who are you?”

“Captain Ford Sunblast, and this is Joe Starcrusher, second in command, and third is Bill Clusterflame.  At your service Captain Anectodick.”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 477

The Insatiable Princess’s wood screeches once more under the speed’s immense and close to unsustainable pressure it must bear along with the spin it has to extricate itself from.  Behind them, a small black hole forms, so black one would get sucked in just looking at it.  In a split second of eternity, the Insatiable Princess transports Captain Traumatic, Labaguette, Birdseye and a Fool out of the danger zone.

Exhausted by her heroic effort, the Insatiable’s Princess slows down as her sails unravel, fall flat against the masts and she comes to a stop.

“We must keep going!” Captain Traumatic urges.

“I need a rest,” Labaguette insists.

“Now is not the time,” the Captain says.

“Where to?” Birdseye asks.

“Even he who must know doesn’t know, doesn’t know, doesn’t know,” the Fool’s empty sneering words echo in the dark, in the empty space surrounding them.

“There are no stars,” Labaguette remarks, “nothing.  Any maps Captain?”

“Never mind where,” the Captains answers, “anywhere better than here.  The Insatiable Princess never does loops.”

“She has stalled, Captain,” Birdseye insists.

“This is entrapment.”

“Entrapment of a third kind,” the Fool suggests.

“Get back into King’s form, Fool,” the Captain commands, “you’re of no use.”

“This is the cloud, the veil that clouded all that I could not see before,” Birdseye remarks, “our path has been interfered with.  We are in a bubble.”

“Precisely.”

“The particles—”

And just like that, a thump is heard and felt by the side of the ship.  Soon, three cosmonauts, climb aboard, each presenting a ‘V’ sign with their index and middle fingers.

“What are they?” the Fool asks.

“They come in peace,” Birdseye confirms.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 475

And yet…

“I feel dizzy,” Labaguette says, passing one of his wings by his face, a diva in the making.

“You’re all fixed Labaguette,” the Captain says, “you can’t have one of your turns again, not now, now ever.  Don’t need your crap.”

Labaguette takes flight.

“It feels better in the air,” he says, “look!  Everything is sliding on the Insatiable Princess.  Do you believe me know?”

Captain Traumatic rushes to free the ship from the platform as the slanting increases.

Further adrift, the King-of-all-Things has swum to the edge of the platform.  He leans forward, using his mighty powers, or what is left of them, conjuring the egg to fly back to him.  Behind him, three monkeys are catching up, victorious in having retrieved a flag, yet all too eager to catch what fell and the fallen a second from now.

“The stars around us are tipping in the same direction as the platform,” Labaguette remarks.

“Impossible,” Birdseye says.

“But true,” the Captain adds.

“A BAAAABOOOOORD!” Labaguette urges once more.

“A Babord!” King Krackskull repeats, an odd smile parading at the tip of his lips.

The platform has now reached a 180 degrees angle, it is perpendicular to the Insatiable Princess.  Everything is sliding from the platform: a never ending supply of water, mountains and turtles unnoticed before, all are falling into the vast nothingness.  This is happening straight after the King-of-all-Things fell from it, still believing he could attract the Egg back, with three Monkeys riding a flag zooming past this King at an impossible speed, hoping to catch the Egg, hoping all the while their father isn’t far behind.

“This entire universe is falling onto itself,” the Captain murmurs.

“It is only the beginning,” Birdseye comments.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 471

“I sit on my throne all day, challenging all armies and creatures that come to my planet to de-throne me.  But none can as they are powerless when confronted by the sheer strength of my planet’s surface.”

“It isn’t a planet, it’s a digestive system.  It would need to relieve itself, it—”

“—It is surrounded by the venomous gas it emits.  No space ship, no creature makes it through unscathed.”

“The Insatiable Princess did.”

“The winds shift the gas.  I don’t control the winds.”

“You could control what your planet gorges.”

“Food is good, I understand the joys of taste buds and I even encourage it.  I control my planet’s food intake when I see fit, when it is necessary and I enjoy being entertained.”

“All theories are valid which are all contained within the Mother of all theories.”

“You allow the voices to speak to you.”

“They’re alive.”

“They’re trapped.  You don’t need me, you have your crowd, your voices, your collectables.”

“Your voice is different.  Your manners are different.  And what is more tempting than having an ex-King become one’s fool at court?”

“Would you consider exchanging me for another prized hostage?”

“I have all that I need here, and now I have thee for keeps.”

“I’ve no crown any more.  I’ve lost touch with She-Coat.”

“I have a secret.  I am also the King of all Universes.”

“Sure.  No doubt, huh?  Let’s suppose—”

“—Your crew is doomed.  You’ll never go back, you’re mine to keep.”

“We shall see.”

“I’ve something which will make you want to stay here forever.”

“Your platform is too small, not interesting at all.”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 470

“I enjoy a state of nothingness in the vast emptiness.  It fulfils me and brings contentment,” the Fool says.

“Yet you travelled accompanied,” the King-of-all-Things remarks.

“It was accidental, a mere trick of fate.  Besides, it’s as I told you: I can’t bring my planet here.  It would be chaos.”

“An erroneous belief, you could try.”

“Your platform and my planet, they’d try and gobble each other up.”

“Hmm.  Your pride is coming in the way.”

“I don’t trust you.”

“You’re a fool, you should know that I am truthfully adaptable.  Collecting gives me a sense of belonging.”

“How can you belong when all that surrounds you is the homogenous, the multiplicity, the transmutable of everything and when nothing fits?”

“It prepares you to any eventuality.  It expands your mind.  You grow.”

“Collectable creatures are you prisoners.  You trap them in your platform and lock them there forever.”

“Call it destiny.  It’s their own doing.  They chose to come my way.  They chose to become collectables.”

“You don’t even play with them.”

“I can hear their voices.  I can hear them talking.  I understand.  It enlightens me.”

“You hear them, huh?  Like you hear me?”

“When I turn the volume up I do.  I don’t shut them up, ever.”

“What are you insinuating?”

“You’re a liar.  Your planet feeds itself of all that falls onto it.  Slowly munching, digesting and belching while you enjoy the show.”

“Not all.”

“Nearly all.”

“Rule of the jungles rules infinity.”

“Your loneliness is increased into infinity as you shut the voices down.”

“It’s not my doing.”

“It’s your ruling.”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 449

“You fool!  Labaguette woke up by himself because the world he swallowed has been assimilated.”

“Ingested.”

“Assimilated.  His stomach is larger.  It will balloon when he stresses out and help him fly faster and just like for Labaguette, the others will wake up in their own time.”

“We’ve wasted enough time.”

“Where are you rushing off too?  Remind me.”

“We’ve travelled off course and in a direction we would have avoided, had we known the destination.”

“You were at the mercy of the winds and tides, were you not?”

“The Captain is always in charge of his ship.”

“It seems to me the Insatiable Princess may have been misled into forging her own path.”

“What would you know about it?”

“Well, for a start she’s a she and—”

“—She?” the Captain mumbles, “of course she’s a she,” he says louder and rising.  “Whims, winds and tides have nothing to do with it.  I’ve always known where we were going.  She and I have a long standing understanding.”

“Captain!” King-U exclaims.

“Si.  Esta muy bien, gracias,” the Captain answers.

Silence.

“CAAAPITAAIIINE !” Labaguette yells, fully awake, from his cell cloud.

“Was ist los?” the Captain continues.

“Je suis enfermé!” Labaguette screams.

“Radiowave transmissions,” The King-of-all-Things says, “your Captain has acquired the ability to speak in tongues.”

“He doesn’t know it.”

“확실히 내가 할”

“He’s confused.”

“Testing, testing, testing,” the Captain says, beaming, “and it works really well, doesn’t it?”

“Of what use is it Captain, we all speak the same—”

“—I might be able to converse with the Syck Monkey,” the Captain says.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 445

“Shut up and dance some more!”

“Who are you to speak of good, evil and trespassing?”

“I am the King of all things.  This is my Kingdom. They belong to me.  You belong to me.  Worlds belong to me.  Universes belong to me.  You’ve released deadly sins into the air.”

“Beg your pardon you… King who?”

“King-of-here and King-of-now.”

“I too was a King.  I had a real name, I—”

“—You’ve no crown, You dance and you behave like a mad creature.  I must say, it is entertaining.  No king acts like you do.”

“My words are kingly.”

“You have said nothing of substance and you dance like any fool would.”

“My crown is large and wise.  It is precious and shines of a thousand fires.”

“I see no crown crowning you.”

“It is self-contained.  It is within.  It shines all of its own, with all its might, can’t you see?”

“Sure.  Look, I don’t know where you come from.  I don’t know what you want and I don’t care, but sure as I am long lived and as I live long, you’re no king.”

“I am not your prisoner.”

“I need entertained for I am lonely.”

“I too was once lonely on my planet.  They,” King U says pointing at the unconscious crew lining the Insatiable Princess’ planks, “are entertaining and as I lost my world, I care not to find it again.”

“You’re odd.  Dance for me!”

“Look what your worlds have done.  Look at them.  Are they sleeping or are they dead?”

“Dance!”

“Fix them first, wake them up!”

“Deal.”

“They’re not dead?”

“Depends.”

“King or fuckwit, I beg you, tell me if these copses are creatures or dust.”

To be continued…