THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 487

But as the universe has it – and all universes by the same token, as is well known but worth repeating – some rule is broken and what is expected becomes unexpected, all of a sudden and very… unexpectedly.

So it goes that Captain Traumatic finds solace for his boredom in his beloved Rum, waiting for the ultimate goal of their trip to appear on the horizon line, should the universe become flat for a little while.  What a waste he muses, all those worlds going by remaining unexplored and unconquered.  Wouldn’t it be nice to own a couple of them at the very least?  So many with such potential, so many needing a leader.  He recalls the Planet of Books which he was unable to save.  If he had a planet of his own, he would—

“—Captain!” Labaguette yells, “we can’t possibly be heading back home without something to show for.”

“We’ll conquer some more ships when we’re back.”

“There’s an interesting cluster a few degrees North,” Birdseye adds, tentatively.

Then the King-Fool begins to sing, dance and gesticulate in excitement.  “One must never give up, give up, give up.”  And again: “One must never give up, give up, give up,” he chants.

“Give up what?” Labaguette asks, perching on his wand, entertained, wanting some more.

“Exploring.  Home is death, desolation, an end to your purpose.”

“I will be a hero, tell me more.”

“You’ll be hero especially if you bring something back which gives you power.  Else, you’ll be a hero for one day and then sink into oblivion the very next day.”

“Captain!”

“He’s drunk.  We must act now.”

To be continued…

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THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 485

“You will be a hero.”

“I know that, I’ve always known it.  Always said so.  See Captain?  For my country.”

“Labaguette, anyone looking at you can read you like a book.  And remember: my country is yours too, it adopted you” the Captain says.

“My heart cannot be divided and that is why I will be a hero.”

“Your heart contains a multitude.  This isn’t about you Labaguette.  Captain Starcrusher, can we use a time capsule to propel us out of here?”

“It doesn’t work that way.  We shall look at them.  I shall explain some more but it is time to go.

And so, preparations are swift.  The euphoria of the knighthood, dampened by Birdseye’s doomsday’s visions of their future, even if quashed in part by the time capsule potential predictive intervention, subsides and the Insatiable Princess is secured to the shuttle’s flank.

But Captain Traumatic is reluctant to step inside the shuttle.

“You must come inside,” Captain Starcrusher insists, “or else the forces at play when we time travel will leave you behind and reduce you to dust.”

“I must look after the Insatiable Princes.  If she can survive, so can I.”

“Well—”

“—You’re not intending to leave her behind are you?  You’d better get it into your head that she’s a survivor.  What proof do you need, you’re without helmet and you survive, do you not?”

“Very well Captain.  Labaguete, this kingly Fool and Birdseye are all inside.”

“They’re only curious.  They’ve never seen a ship like yours before.”

“Are you not the least interested?”

“A ship’s a ship.  My crew will get bored the minute you close the door on them.”

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 484

“What’s got into you Birdseye?” Captain Traumatic asks.

But Birdeye’s large wings close tight on his shoulders and sink on his back as his neck retreats within his shoulders.  His previously colourful feathers take on a darker hue and soon his silhouette is barely distinguishable from that of an old vulture.

“We must leave,” Captain Starcrusher insists.  “Thank you for the ceremony.  I vouch on my two subordinates’ loyalty and fairness.  There is nothing to fear.

Meanwhile, Labaguette whispers words of comfort into Birdseye’s ear:

“Fear not, I will protect you,” he says as Birdseye looks into the parrot’s eyes with sorrow and grief etched deep inside the lines at the corner of his mouth, his goggles now at their darkest.

“—Pardon me Bird, I am from where the croissants rise early, where liberty and equality bear some meaning.  What is it that you know that I should know?”

“It isn’t about you Labaguette.”

“I didn’t—”

“—A time capsule popped while we searched for the Insatiable Princess.”

“What?” Captain Traumatic asks.

“A great way to predict future events.  This is part of Captain Starcrusher’s work, the speeding, the time, the going back and forth.  He was able to identify time articles that could be caught in capsules. ”

“What are you talking about?”

“Correct,” Captain Starcrusher says.

“It won’t be in your books, Captain, because time shifts.  It can’t be caught on a page.  No one controls the capsules.  Yet, we were able to capture time cells and time cluster cells which, when released from their capsules – chose to tell about a significant event, be it half-a-second in advance, 2 or 600 billion years from now.”

“So it did see something about moi?” Labaguette insists.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 483

“Precisely.  Relegated to the Junkyard Space Program for all those not fitting with the Purpose via minimisation: nano particles shall be reduced to nano size multiplied by itself to infinity.”

“Which country is this?”

“My country encompasses all, I shall help its border extensive extension’s propensity.”

“I was King.  Now I am Fool,” King Krackskull Fool says, “what category would I fit in?”

“Ha!” Labaguette exclaims.

“You’re the foolishest fool of them all!” Birdseye says, turning to Captain Clusterflame.

“There’s no time for debate,” Captain Traumatic says, all fine print and subtext will be discussed later.”

“But Captain, a fool such as this one cannot be knighted, much like King Krackskull’s status is no longer that of King.”

“What is it with you Birdseye?”  Are you scared?  Do you wish to be Knight of mine?”

“I do not speak for nothing.”

“Capitaine,” Labaguette says, “Birdseye may have a point, check your library, check your books.”

“We must be getting on.”

Upon these words, Captain Traumatic raises his sword, taps it three times onto Captain Custerflame’s helmet, saying:

“And, I, shall endeavour to promote thorough cleaning of space and its surroundings by means of inter-galactically mixed and organically grown Rum sprinkling and spraying so that crumbs and left overs of all such elements as you described shall disintegrate and space be purified.”

The cosmonaut’s helmet cracks, shatters onto the ship’s woo and he takes his first breath of airspace.

Birdseye turns to space, his goggles lit up and send two powerful laser beam deep into the darkness, illuminating the nothingness all around them, uncovering more depth of nothingness, forming displays of lit up pictures: helmets, barbed wires, Batman’s logo, nuclear explosions and crosses momentarily appear, thus closing the knighthood ritual.

To be continued…

THE INCREDIBLE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN TRAUMATIC – 480

“The Insatiable Mermaid is no more.  She earned her title of Princess through hard work and enduring loyalty.”

“She’s a ship.”

“Note that the Captain forgot his name eons ago,” the Fool remarks, beaming, “he forgot it but he is now forgetting it on purpose.  As to the Insatiable Princes we—”

“—Suppose I did.  Suppose I forgot my name.  What do you want from me?” Captain Traumatic asks.

“We’ve orders to bring you back to Earth.”

“I’m a pirate.  I am the proud owner of the most indomitable, rebellious and nomadic soul there is.”

“Is it Moi?” Labaguette asks.

“Shut up fuckwit!” the Captain says.”

“Captain, we must be getting back on the road.  Time is precious when you travel afar.  Time storms abound and these can distract our compasses.  We need to get back to the year we left, give or take a few seconds or a few weeks.”

“And what year was that?” the Fool asks.

“2578.”

“We were there before you,” the Captain remarks, “your time doesn’t suit us.  If you want to take us back to Earth, you take us back to 1602.”

“It could be done but only once we’ve gotten back to our year first.”

“Why?”

“We must take you there with a more appropriate shuttle, one which travels unambiguously backwards in time and one which could contain your ship.”

“Prove you are from Earth,” the Captain says.

“Make me your Knight and let us guide you back to Earth.”

“Well then, first, take your armour or this ludicrous hat off.”

“We wouldn’t be able to survive without this attire, Sir Anectodick.”

“I’ve no such attire and I live.”

“Couldn’t breathe without it.”

“You poor sod, must be a terrible disease.”

To be continued…

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…