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 – 469

In a flash, the Syck Monkey clutches his cherished possession and the Insatiable Princess is released from its mooring, rushing under the capable hands of the young monkeys, back towards the King-of-all-Things’ Universe.

“You kept your secret tight.  You could have said something.” the Captain asks.

“Never had the time,” Birdseye said.

“How did you—”

“—used a salmon’s egg but since I’m no salmon, it’s remained an empty shell.”

“Still you could have told me.  A whisper would have done.  We’re almost free, don’t you see?  Out of this rotten lost-in-space-time-continuum will be had soon and back to Earth.”

“Not so free.  Not so soon,” Birdseye says.

“Cheer up Mate!” Labaguette says, “if I didn’t know you better, I’d swear you’re about to jump this ship without wings.  Besides, what was the point of the empty shell if it’s not going to lead us anywhere safe?”

“The egg was part illusion, part shell,” Birsdeye says, “a trick of the goggles.  There was nothing growing in it.  Did we see the real Syck Monkey or not?  It was his shadow.”

“One illusion in exchange for another,” the Captain ponders.

Now, we’ve 25 universal hours to get out of this space, including out of the King-of-all-Things oceanic platform or we will become irretrievable objects forgotten in the deep oblivion of the deep corner of the Syck Monkey’s deep cavern.”

“The Syck Monkey predicted a different outcome for all of us,” Labaguette remarks.

“Maybe, maybe not.  Alternative realities abound.  It only takes a feather’s atomic particle to allow switching from one reality to another.”

Meanwhile, back on the platform where the King-of-all-Things and a Fool are debating, a storm is brewing on this Universe’s horizon.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 463

Then, the shadow on this universe’s wall rematerializes displaying three monkeys holding each other in such manner as to form an almost perfect egg shape.  Underneath it, the shadow of the Syck Monkey is holding the egg stable above his head, his tail weaving a dance, a charming snake, insinuating, dancing some more to a sound that can be felt and is palpable but that cannot be heard.

“This is all very charming,” the Captain says, “but—”

His last words are drowned by Recovery Space Shuttle 593’s engines pulling from its mooring at full thrust.  Vapours and smoke invade all that surround as light flickers before disappearing and the clear track of the shuttle leaves its mark behind it, opening a piece of sky that could not be seen before under these latitudes: a clear, blue and pristine sky only seen back on earth.

“Look!” the Captain exclaims, unable to find a better word as smoke soon closes his vision of heaven on earth with great big swirls of pinks, white and grey puffs before engulfing it once more with its darker blanket.

“We’ve achieved nothing.  We’ve met a Shuttle that has not even been collected by the Syck Monkey.  My patience has its limits.  We too should be getting back on the road.  Labaguette, attend to the sails!  Birdseye, perch at the front will you, and look out for surprises!”

“Ai, Ai Captain!” Labaguette retorts, “whereto?”

“Anywhere so long it’s outta here bird!”

“There’s no wind and—,” Birdseye says.

“—we only need a sea,” Labaguette remarks.

“We won’t get away so easily without some tough bargaining,” Birdseye adds.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 462

There, in the darkness, in grey capital letters over white, the Captain struggles to reads

“Recovery Space Shuttle 593 – CT Mission… CT Mission!  That’s me they’re talking about!  I am Captain Traumatic, THAT’S ME!  HEY!  IS ANYBODY THERE?” the Captain says after jumping onto the horizontal shuttle parked by the side of the Insatiable Princess.

Inside a window the size of a brick and just as thick, three round, white and large and solid bubbles with beaming faces inside them look out.  The Captain kneels and start banging on the surface of the space ship.

“OPEN UP!  OPEN UP!” he screams.

“Not about you,” Labaguette remarks, “’By the way, CT stands for Clear Translation’…  Nah, probably ‘Clockwork Transmutation’.”

“Shut up Labaguette!”

“GOT IT!  It stands for ‘Climate Transition.’”

“They’re looking for me.”

“Climate Transition Mission.”

“Bit of both if you ask me,” Birdseye says as white puffs of vapour begin pouring from the sides of the shuttle and the white ropes keeping it close and bound to these skies are unravelling slowly.

“Look at them!” Labaguette insists.

“I’ve no need to,” Birdseye says, “They’re skies’ knights.”

“Cosmonauts,” the Captain corrects, “they’re cosmonauts.”

“They don’t look like earthians,” Labaguette remarks, “and this can’t be a ship.”

“Humans.”

“Are they?”

“Skies’ knights,” Birdseye repeats, “will be your best friends, Labaguette, someday.”

“Sure,” Labaguette says, enjoying the attention, “bubble wrapped friends from beyond and more, there’s nothing more I could hope for,” as the Captain raises his eyes, prey to some form of despair.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 461

Enough is enough.  Inside a pirate’s soul looms but the horror of the shade.

“What shade?” the Captain asks, wondering at the fickleness of his mind, “what shade?  Where’s Recovery Space Shuttle 593?”

“My, my Captain,” Labaguette remarks, “I’ve been waiting for your blood to boil out of its lethargy for some time now.”

This time, a fish hits Birsdeye in the face dislodging his goggles for an evasive second as the giant shadow of a monkey flies by, hanging from a rope, followed by three smaller monkeys all chucking fish on the ship’s deck, hanging from the white ropes they so dexterously made when living inside the Insatiable Princess’ hull.  Birdseye’s takes off his goggles and to Labaguette’s and the Captain’s bewilderment, throws beams of fire at the passing ropes and at the fish.  In less than a second, an uneasy darkness, silence and the smell of fried fish infiltrates the atmosphere.

“Some talent!” the Captain exclaims, “you can’t bottle things up like that Birdseye.  Why not use this before when we needed?”

“Precisely,” Birdseye says, “I too have had enough.”

“His blood too has come to boiling point,” Labaguette adds, “and now we’ve fried fish.”

“It’s disappointing,” the Captain says, “all that time spent with the Monkeys and now they act as if we were their enemies, keeping secrets, and playing games with us.  To think they grew up with us.”

“Now you see,” Birdseye says.

“That’s not good enough Birdseye!  Even you got caught in their game.”

“They belong to another egg,” Labaguette comments.

“World,” the Captain corrects as he collects the fried fish from the deck and throws them overboard.

But before he has time to utter another word, a ‘clonk’ is heard as each fish lands on a metallic surface.

To be continued…