Guess what I don't I own? Yes, you in front. Trigun? Ding ding ding! That's correct!
Trigun and all of its characters are in fact © Yasuhiro Nightow and Young King Comics, with U.S. distribution rights by Pioneer Animation.
Now that I've protected myself from legal action…
"Look sir, we can't get you your own cabin!"
"I'd like to know why the hell not? Don't I deserve a cabin considering all that I'm paying you?"
The ticket taker shook his head sadly. It had been a very long day, and this brown-haired man wasn't making her life any easier. "Sir, I'd like to remind you that most of that is the extra charge for your luggage."
"My luggage! C'mon man! They're the tools of my trade!" The man shot back.
"Well sir, that fact notwithstanding, it's still oversized, and therefore costs extra. The rest will buy you a general ticket and nothing more!" This seemed to make the man even angrier, he shoved his face so close to the clerks that the clerk could smell what the man had eaten for breakfast. "Listen bud, I deserve that. . ."
Unable to contain his rage any longer the clerk punched the man in the face, knocking him to the ground. The man groaned and stared up at burning suns. A shadow moved across the street and fell over him.
"You're an idiot Jeremiah," the shadow told him. The shadow's hand reached down to help him up. Jeremiah stood up, dusted himself off, and looked at the shadow, which had resolved itself into a tallish woman with blonde hair and a red jacket.
"Hi, Nikki," he said, "I just figured that. . ."
"Just figured nothing! The man's right! Why the hell do you have to lug that thing everywhere? Don't say defense, because you can just buy yourself a damn shotgun or something!"
Jeremiah straightened his tie and ran his hand through his hair. "Because, Nikki, it's a connection to my father, who, if you'll remember, I never met."
Nikki covered her eyes and shook her head. Same old Jeremiah, he hadn't changed at all since they were kids. "Alright, alright, I'll tell you what, if we both chip in we can afford a cabin together."
Jeremiah fell to his knees, grabbed Nikki's hand, and started kissing it, "Thank you, thank you, thank you Nikki! You're my savior!"
Nikki shook him off and wiped her hand on her jacket. "Yeah, yeah, whatever."
Jeremiah's luggage was safely tucked in the cargo hold, he and Nikki lounged in their cabin, and the sand steamer sped on without incident. Jeremiah wondered how long it would last.
"I wonder how long this peace can last?"
Nikki looked up from where she was polishing her revolvers. "Now what do you mean by that? I'm not my father after all."
He raised his hands, "I know, I didn't mean anything." She raised her eyebrow and went back to polishing her revolvers.
Jeremiah stood up and stretched his stiff muscles. "I'm going for food, you want anything?"
Nikki didn't even look up from her gun. "Doughnuts," she said.
"Yes, more doughnuts."
Jeremiah strode out the door, shaking his head. "Why did I even bother to ask?"
Jeremiah sauntered up to the food counter, stopping to pet a black, green-eyed cat lying in the middle of the floor. To his surprise, nobody was manning the food counter. He peered over the counter and looked down. At the same time a server shot up from below the counter, her head connecting with Jeremiah's chin. The girl was saved by her goofy looking hat, but Jeremiah wasn't so lucky.
"Oh sir, I am so sorry, are you alright?"
Jeremiah lifted himself from the floor, rubbing his jaw. "Oh that's okay, I didn't need those teeth." He smiled crookedly at the server. His mother told him that it was his father's same crooked grin that had won her over. Unfortunately it didn't seem to work as well for the server. She cringed back from Jeremiah.
"Errrr, what can I get you sir?" she asked, putting on her fake "service" smile.
Jeremiah hung his head. "A hot dog and a box of doughnuts please."
She nodded, fake smile turned around fake smile, retrieved the hot dog and doughnuts fake smile, and placed them on the counter in front of Jeremiah fake smile. "That'll be 15$$ sir!" Jeremiah pulled out a couple of crumpled bills and slapped them on the counter.
"Have a nice day sir!" she called as he walked away.
"Too late for that," he muttered, rubbing his chin.
Jeremiah pushed the door open to find Nikki sleeping on the top bunk. Her short, blonde hair barely brushed the pillow as she snored softly.
"Hmm, what yummy doughnuts I have here! Too bad Nikki's asleep, 'cause I'm gonna eat them all on my own!" Jeremiah suddenly found himself on the floor of the cabin, clutching his hot dog. Nikki might have looked like her mother, but she moved like her father.
"Merhimahi Nee Volvoon, vu woa deef donuf waer rime," she said through a doughnut.
"What the hell did you just say?"
Nikki swallowed the doughnut she had in her mouth, "Jeremiah T. Wolfwood, you know damn well these doughnuts are mine."
Jeremiah stood up, "Hey, I bought 'em."
Nikki nodded, "True, but once they entered this room they became my personal property, and I can do whatever I wish with them. Consider it a trade for the money I put up for the sand steamer ride."
Out in the middle of the badlands, all is peaceful at night. There's very little sound as the creatures go about the business of surviving. The five moons hang over the deserts of Gunsmoke like guardians, watching over the animals, plants, and humans. The quiet of the badlands is among the more peaceful experiences one can have on this violent planet. The peace is almost Zen-like, if any of the inhabitants of Gunsmoke had any idea what the hell Zen was.
Unfortunately, it is this very silence that makes it easy to find sand steamers at night. In the deepest silence, a multi-ton machine barreling through the desert at high speeds attracts a lot of attention. Most of the time that attention is nothing more than simple curiosity. Occasionally that attention is much more sinister.
A pair of eyes looked up at the five moons they knew so well. Hmmm, five moons. The eyes had heard that this world had two suns. They wondered if it really had. It had been so long since the pair of eyes had seen a sun; they had forgotten what a sun looked like. A pair of ears attached to the same head the pair of eyes were in pricked up. The steamer was coming. A pair of hands pulled a watch out of a pocket and held in front of the pair of eyes. "Ten minutes late," the eyes said, "like it always is."
A couple of isles away, another pair of eyes was staring at a fire. These eyes, hidden behind a pair of blue reflective sunglasses, belonged to a young cavalryman named Lieutenant Evans Braxler. Lt. Evans was not having the best of days. He had been in the wilderness with no company besides his thomas for five days. During that time he had eaten nothing but random desert creatures. Tonight's hunt for random desert creatures to eat had turned up bare. To top it all off, he was down to his last cigar.
He scratched his goatee, wondering if he should have it now, or hold off and enjoy it when he can be sure of getting more. Patience and nicotine addiction fought, and nicotine addiction won. Evans lit the cigar in the campfire and took a big drag. "Ahhhhhh, definitely worth it," Evans said, "Stupid bounty assignments, what did I do to deserve 'em?" He took another drag on the cigar. "You had sex with the captain's daughter, that's what you did," he said, "What's the big deal? We're the same age, jeeze." He grinned ruefully. "Now that was definitely not worth it."
Back inside the steamer, Jeremiah and Nikki were playing cards. Since they were both cheating, neither was winning. It was just as well, as neither had any money left.
Outside in the desert, a pair of eyes saw the steamer coming. A mouth under the eyes smiled pointedly. He signaled to his lackies to blow the charges. Money and blood. Tonight promised to be a good night…
Nikki: When people meet for the first time, they initially don't know what to think of each other. First impressions are very important, and the sad truth of it is that most people make their decisions about others within ten seconds of seeing them. Perhaps if people stopped and listened to others before they decide what they think about them, we'd all have more friends. Next Chapter: Fateful Meetings.