Rating: PG-13 - curse words, adult themes.
Summary: An unexplained incident in hyperspace throws the Bebop across the universe, into the future, and to planet named Gunsmoke. Cowboy Bebop/Trigun crossover.
Spoilers: It'd help if you saw every episode/session of both series'.
Disclaimer: Cowboy Bebop characters belong to Sunrise, Bandai Entertainment, Shinichiro Watanabe et al., and their many, many well-paid lawyers.
Trigun characters belong to Yasuhiro Nightow, and his many, many well- paid lawyers. I am NOT making any money off this, nor am I trying to infringe on anyone's copyright. Believe that.
Song Disclaimer: Song titles (used as chapter titles, ala Cowboy Bebop's session titles) are used without permission. Probably not a sue-able offense, but you gotta CYA (cover your ass) nowadays. Proper credit will be assigned, just in case.
Authors' Notes: In the CB-verse, this story is post "Speak Like A Child". In the Trigun-Verse, it's before "Demon's Eye". Pre-Legato, if you will. It's also my first time writing anything for the Trigun characters. And, as for the merging of the universes, I only ask for your willing suspension of disbelief. I'm no astrophysicist, either, despite how much material I read on the 'Net before attempting this fic. Many thanks!
I'd like to thank Leah for beta'ing for me. If this fic sucks, I blame you!
Questions, Comments, Suggestions: Send to donnacsoprano76 AT yahoo DOT com. All flames are read, laughed at then deleted with extreme prejudice.
"The Real Gunsmoke Blues" By Net Girl
Chapter One: "Ladies and Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space"
"Where is he?"
Jet Black turned when he heard Faye Valentine ask him the question. He half-smiled when he found the young woman standing behind the pilot's seat on the bridge of the Bebop, her hands on her hips and her eyes narrowed to slits. No doubt she was pissed off that they'd cut their latest trip to Earth short. Too bad.
"Where he usually is," he replied, turning back to his console. His eyebrows rose when he noted an odd fluctuation in energy output from the starboard engine. The abnormality was gone in a matter of seconds. Jet put it out of his mind and plotted their course back to Mars.
"Hmph," was all Faye said as she pivoted on her heel and headed for the main living area of the ship.
"Hey! Faye-Faye!" Ed exclaimed as she dropped, seemingly, out of nowhere, landing right in front of Faye. "Back already?" She hopped around the woman who continued to walk down the corridor.
Faye wasn't in the mood for Ed's silliness, not when she was trying to be pissed off at Spike Spiegel.
"We're goin' home," Ed said, unfazed by being ignored by Faye. Instead, she turned a few cartwheels. When she stopped, she was directly in Faye's path, forcing her to an abrupt halt.
"Would you get out of the way?" she growled, clutching her hands into fists.
"Okay!" Ed sing-songed in response. She made a graceful leap aside, allowing Faye to continue on her way. "You shouldn't be mad, though. Big, big money back on Mars!"
The mention of money made Faye stop in her tracks. One eyebrow arched as she looked over her shoulder to Ed. "Big money?"
She whirled around, grabbed Ed by her shirt and pulled the girl closer. "How much money are we talking about here?" she demanded. She'd lost quite a bit of her own at the dog races the week before. Funds were tight. But they were always tight for Faye.
"Ten million woolongs," Spike's voice replied for Ed.
Faye gritted her teeth when she saw the goofy grin on Edward's face. She released the kid then rose to her full height as she faced Spike. "Ten million, huh?" she repeated, casually. She watched him exhale the smoke from the cigarette dangling in his mouth. "Must be a tough one, then, huh? You're gonna need my help." She sighed as though the prospect was an interruption in her life. "I'll have to insist on at least 50, no less."
After a moment, Spike just smiled, shoved his hands in his pockets and walked away from her. That woman was a piece of work. How she always assumed they needed her help. He and Jet managed fine before they'd had the misfortune of crossing paths with Faye Valentine.
Ed laughed and Faye growled as she glared at Spike's retreating figure. She looked down to Ed. "Why didn't you tell me that he was standing right behind us?" she snapped.
"You never asked!" Ed sang in reply. She danced in a circle around Faye, waving her arms over her head. "Aye! Faye-Faye!"
Faye's eyes darkened as Ed danced off down the corridor, headed for the bridge of the Bebop. "Lousy, annoying kid," she muttered.
In the living area, Spike laid on the couch, his hands folded together across his stomach as he rested. The still burning cigarette was propped on the edge of an ashtray. Only the hum of the ship's engines could be heard. The trip to Mars would provide much needed relaxation for him. The false lead on a bounty, the reason they'd even come to Earth, irritated him more than it should've. Probably because Faye had been the one to bring it to them. A wasted trip, that's what this was.
Faye peeked around the corner, then checked high and low to make sure Ed wasn't lurking about. That kid had caused her enough grief for the day. Locking her hands together behind her back, Faye casually strolled into the room, humming a tune. She came up behind the couch, glancing down at Spike lying there, apparently asleep.
"You can forget about fifty percent," Spike murmured, his eyes still closed. A moment later, one eye opened and focused on Faye looming over him. "If we even let you in on this one," he added with a cocky grin, then he closed his eye.
Hands on her hips, Faye leaned over the back of the couch. "Who got you Gage Dakota!" She jerked a thumb at herself. "Me. I was generous enough to share that seven million woolong bounty with you and Jet, too."
"Only because you felt guilty for losing us Aisha O'Donohue," Spike matter of factly replied.
"That was not my fault!"
Sighing, Spike opened his eyes and sat up on the couch. He met the gaze of Faye, who continued to scowl at him. "It was your fault. You never listen, you never do what you're told. Therefore, it was your fault."
Faye gripped the back of the couch with both hands, her rage building up inside of her by the second. She needed that five million woolongs, and Spike needed his history corrected on the subject of Aisha O'Donohue. Her mouth opened so she could give him that lesson but the ship shimmied violently.
Surprise registered on their faces, then they looked up as the sound of metal yawning echoed throughout the spacecraft. Before either could say a word, the Bebop lurched, knocking Faye off of her feet. She landed hard on her butt.
"What the hell is that idiot doing up there!" she shouted.
Jet clenched his teeth together as he quickly punched the keys of the console nearest him. Warning alarms blared throughout the bridge. His gaze shifted between the console, the screens and the stars whipping by the windows as they passed through hyperspace. The engines weren't properly responding to the autopilot's commands and his attempts to go manual weren't registering with the ship's computers.
"Jet!" Ed called as she, along with Ein, stumbled onto the bridge. "Energy output on the starboard engine is wrong! Too much isn't good for Bebop!"
"I know!" Jet yelled back. He grunted when the ship shuddered again. The problem, whatever the hell it was, had spread beyond the engine. The jump into hyperspace was the catalyst for even bigger trouble. The reads on the screens were practically garbage, none of it made sense. The battle for control over propulsion was center stage. If he didn't keep his cool, the ship would be ripped apart.
Ed pointed to the display on one of the monitors. "A subspace anomaly is developing ahead of the Bebop." Her fingers clicked a few buttons, bringing up the pulsating image on the sensors. "Time and space are wacky- wacky! Out of sync!"
Ein barked at the anomaly on the display before him and Ed.
"We have to go around!" Ed replied to Ein with a firm nod.
Jet adjusted the ship's course the best he could but nothing responded with any degree of efficiency. The computer seemed to accept his numbers, however, he couldn't be certain his corrections would actually happen. His eyes widened when he finally saw the anomaly Ed alerted him to in front of the ship. The swirling mist continued to grow in size. In a matter of seconds, it would envelop the entire span of space in which they traveled.
He had no options left open to him. Throwing all the power in reserve to the engines, he pushed the Bebop towards the shimmering mass. Maybe, if he was lucky, he could punch through it. Suddenly, the swirl flashed, blinding the three on the bridge. Jet threw up one arm to shield his eyes while the other desperately tried to control the ship. A violent shockwave threw Jet out of the pilot's seat and onto the floor.
Ein yelped as he flew out of Ed's grasp and hit one of the consoles. Screaming, half in terror and half in glee, Ed ended up on the floor along with Jet and Ein. The Bebop was swallowed by the anomaly which exploded out of existence as soon as the ship passed into it. Anyone who traveled through the gate behind them would never suspect that anything had gone wrong here only a moment ago.
Somewhere in deep space ...
A flash of white light illuminated the vast black of space and spat out the battered ship called Bebop. As it had back in hyperspace, the anomaly vanished without a trace as soon as the vessel had passed through it. The Bebop remained stationary, dead in space, where it had been deposited.
Groaning, Jet pushed himself off of the floor. He flinched when one of the panels near him sparked. "Goddamnit," he muttered. He touched a hand to his forehead and withdrew it to find his fingers stained with a small amount of blood. Another panel sparked, startling him, then he let out a sigh. They were lucky to be alive. At least, he was alive.
"Ooooooo!" moaned Ed from the other side of the bridge. Hands placed on either side of her head, the girl sat up, blinking and shaking it a few times. She dropped her hands to the floor, using them to keep herself in a sitting position. "Jet. Swirly stopped." She patted Ein on the head when he crawled over to her. "S'all right, Ein. It's over."
Jet grabbed onto a console and hauled himself to his feet. "I noticed," he said. He surveyed the damage done to the bridge then he let his eyes close. This would take ages to fix. He couldn't hear the engines running either, and that concerned him more than the sparking consoles.
Ein barked a few times and Jet opened his eyes. He watched the dog jump into the pilot's seat, still barking at something outside of the forward window.
"Get down, Ein," Jet grumbled, batting a hand at the Corgi. Then, he saw what Ein barked and growled at - they were in orbit around a planet. He would've guessed it to be Mars. However, it wasn't. None of the cities he knew were on this planet's surface, and the geography was all wrong as well.
"Woooow," Ed cooed as she popped up in front of the window. Both palms pressed against the window and she leaned forward. "Planet ahoy!" she declared. "Uh oh. Getting bigger and bigger, too."
Jet checked the readouts on one of the panels. Ed was right. Gradually, the Bebop was losing altitude. It wouldn't be more than a few hours before the gravity yanked them out of the sky.
"We have to find out where we are," he said as he sat down in the pilot's seat. His fingers flew over the buttons as he tried to use the computer to restore the engines. They were adrift but the orbit was decent - low enough to keep them from drifting out into space and high enough to give Jet time to do something. "Ed, see if Spike and Faye are okay."
Ed saluted. "Ed's on it!" she happily replied. "Ein!" With her canine companion on her heels, Ed, arms held out at her sides, ran down the corridor, making airplane sounds as she ran.
Faye's eyes slowly opened. She found herself lying flat on her stomach and her left arm hurt like hell. Her eyelids fluttered a few times before she fully regained consciousness. A hand brushed the hair out of her face. Are we dead? she wondered. A quick look around revealed she was still aboard the Bebop. If this is the afterlife, I can do without it. At least whatever she'd landed on was soft enough to sufficiently break her fall.
"Are you planning on getting off of me anytime soon?" Spike's voice asked from below her.
Faye looked down. In the commotion, she'd ended up on top of him. They were both face down and sprawled, rather uncomfortably, on the floor just in front of the couch. She poked a finger into Spike's back a few times, grinning at her newfound position of power. "You didn't say the magic word," she teased.
"Now," was the strained response.
Digging her elbow into the middle of his back, Faye murmured, "Not even close."
The sound of a gun being cocked wiped the smirk off of Faye's face. The sensation of cold steel being jammed into the flesh of her right side made her look down. Spike, arm twisted in an odd manner, had his gun pointed at her.
"Get off," came the order once more. That was followed by the gun barrel jabbing into her side. "NOW."
She narrowed her eyes at the back of his head. "Fifty percent."
"Don't think that I won't shoot," Spike told her. Faye wasn't a featherweight and her body crushed him into the metal floor of the ship. Not to mention the fact his side ached. He'd slammed it against the table during the course of his fall.
She leaned down to his ear, lowering her voice to a whisper. "I dare you."
"Hey! Spike! Faye-Faye!" sang Ed's voice from the corridor. "Are you dead?" Ein's barking followed. By the time Ed bounded into the room, Spike and Faye were off of the floor. Faye lazily reclined at one end of the couch, examining her fingernails, while Spike was on the other, checking the clip in his gun. "You're not dead!"
Ein jumped onto the table then sat down, eyeing each human, panting all the while.
Ed laughed as she draped her arms over the back of the sofa between them. "Hey!"
"What the hell happened up there?" Spike asked as he returned his gun to its holster.
On her back now, looking at the two adults upside down, Ed said, "Engine went vrooom! Put a hole in space! Yeah! Bebop went right through!" She flipped over the back of the couch and landed on her knees between them. "And here we are!"
"Where is here?" Faye inquired. "Did we get back to Mars or what?" She glanced at Spike who pretended not to notice.
"At a planet. Not Mars, though." Ed rolled off of the couch, then picked up her goggles that she used to help navigate herself through computer systems and put them on. "Bebop went a long ways from Mars." She clicked on the keyboard with her toes, trying to access the 'Net system.
"Great," Faye muttered as she folded her arms across her chest. "We can forget about that ten million woolong bounty now. Money like that, every bounty hunter on Mars will be on it."
"You were only getting ten percent anyway, so you didn't lose out on much," Spike casually replied.
"Shut up," Faye grumbled.
Ed growled, catching the attention of Spike and Faye. She lifted up her goggles, leaned towards her computer screen and tapped a finger against the monitor.
"What's wrong?" Faye leaned forward so she could see Ed's face better. She glanced at the computer screen. The usually happy Happy Face was no longer happy. It was equally as annoyed as Ed. "Are you listening to me?"
"Nothin's on the 'Net!" Ed wailed. She scowled as she kicked the table with her feet. "Can't connect!"
"I thought you were the hacker whiz?" Spike raised an eyebrow in mild amusement.
"I can't connect because the 'Net isn't there!" She threw her hands up in frustration then fell back against his legs. She looked up at him. "It doesn't exist!"
"What do you mean, it doesn't exist?"
Ed looked over to Faye. "No signals. No way to hack into something that ain't there." Her toes clicked at the keyboard and the screen again showed nothing. "All gone!"
"It can't be gone!" Faye grabbed Ed's computer from the table and rattled it a few times. "It has to be here!"
"You won't find it because we're nowhere near Mars. Or any system that we're familiar with," Jet said as he entered the room. He used the rag in his hands to finish cleaning the dirt and grime away from his fingers. He sighed. "The computers can't pinpoint our position in space because it doesn't recognize any of the star fields." He tossed the rag on the table. "That jolt sent us further than any humans have ever traveled."
"Are you saying we're lost out here?" Spike asked. That was all he needed. To be stuck out in the middle of God knew where with these three.
"For the time being, yeah." He glanced around the room, shaking his head. "The ship took a hell of a beating in that jump. If I don't get the main engines running again, we'll be the newest residents of the planet we're orbiting."
"If we don't burn up in the atmosphere first," Spike added then sparked his lighter so he could light the cigarette he'd pulled out while Jet explained the situation. "In which case, it won't matter."
Faye jumped to her feet. "How can you two be so calm about this?" she exclaimed. "We're in the middle of space, with no idea where. Let's not forget that we don't have a lot left in the way of food, either."
Ed put a hand to her stomach when it growled at the mention of food. "Hungry," she murmured. While the adults continued to discuss the matter at hand, she and Ein crawled away in search of something to eat.
"What about this planet you mentioned?" Spike asked. "Isn't anyone living there?"
"I managed to pick up a few clusters of civilization on the sensors, but I can't say how reliable those readings are," Jet answered. "Other than that, the planet is dead. I'm amazed anyone could've survived there for a long period of time."
"Or anything," Faye added under her breath.
"Think they'd help us out?"
Faye flicked her gaze to Spike. "You want to go down there?"
He exhaled smoke and shrugged. "We don't have much choice, do we? Unless you'd rather stay up here and die." He looked over to Jet as Faye muttered and cursed quietly. "How long until you fix the engines?"
He shrugged. "Hard to say."
"Ed will help!" She twirled back into the room, one of the food packets they'd stored away for emergencies clasped in her hands. Ein jumped up and down, barking for Ed to share it with him.
"Hey!" Faye snatched the packet out of Ed's hands and held it high so the girl couldn't reach it. "What the hell are you doing? We're stranded in space! We can't have you eating up what little food we have."
"Give!" Ed demanded as she jumped up and down, desperate to reclaim her stolen packet. "Gimme, gimme, gimme! Faye-Faye! Please?"
Spike plucked the packet from Faye's hand and dropped it back down to Ed. Squealing in delight, Ed landed on the couch and began to divvy up the contents with Ein. "Let her have it," he said when Faye turned to glare at him. "It's one damn packet."
"That came outta your share of the rations," Faye evenly replied, pointing a finger at him. "Remember that when your stomach is knotted up in hunger, Spike."
Spike took a drag off of his cigarette, then held it between his fore and middle fingers as he plucked it out of his mouth. "I'm not worried," he calmly assured her, then blew out the smoke in her direction. "I can always eat you."
Jet held back a laugh. Hard to do, considering the look on Faye's face. "I'll be working on our engine problem."
"Eee! Wait for me!" The girl swallowed the rest of the food then leapt off of the couch, chasing after Jet. "C'mon, Ein!" With a bark, Ein took off after them.
"I really hate you some days," Faye muttered a few moments after Jet and Ed had left.
"And the rest of the time?" he asked, flicking the ashes off the end of the cigarette.
She rose up onto her tiptoes, shoving her face inches away from his. "I loathe you," she evenly replied. With that, she pushed him out of her way and left him standing in the middle of the room.
A crooked grin on his face, Spike finished off the cigarette, snuffed it out then he, too, left the room.
More to come ...
Song title used: "Ladies and Gentlemen, We Are Floating In Space" by Spiritualized.