EIGHTEEN

"So that's your final decision?" Tripley asked Lone Starr as Yogurt's ship cruised back towards Druidia, "After spending the whole storing saying how dejected you feel with Vespa, you'd still go back to her?"

"Trip, I guess what I was looking for after all was just a little adventure," Lone Starr told him, "One last great hurrah. Now that I've got it, I'll bed happier in my life as Prince Lone Starr. Don't ask me exactly why, but that's how I feel. This doesn't take anything away from you, though. You're still one of the greatest things that ever happened to me."

"Well, I'll keep that in mind the next time I pop by Druidia," Tripley said with a smile.

Yogurt walked into the room with a megaphone. "Attention everybody who isn't going back to the Moon of Vega," he announced, "Boarding for departure to your home worlds will be beginning on the transit deck in five minutes, so be sharp."

"Uh, I've now got a slight problem, Yogurt," Lone Starr told him, "I'm now…"

"Without a Winnebago, I know," Yogurt told him, "Well follow me, my boy; Uncle Yogurt's got everything all sorted out for you."

"What do you mean you've got every—you got me another Winnebago?" Lone Starr couldn't believe his eyes. But revolving around in the docking bay was a brand new one. "A carbon copy without any carbon; nobody on Druidia'll ever know the difference," the Schwartz master told him, "Consider it a reward for your mastery of the Schwartz back there."

"Thanks Yogurt," Lone Starr shook his mentor's hand, "I knew that would come in handy again. I should probably tell you I decided…"

"To stay with Vespa," Yogurt knew it already, "You're making a good choice, Lone Starr. Look hard enough and you'll find the happily ever after happiness."

"Hey Yogurt," Alf strolled over, "I believe you promised me a snack of sorts for my part in the saving Druidia bargain."

"Yes, sure, you strike a hard bargain, Shumway; the cats are in the trunk," Yogurt pointed to the banana split shaped rocket the Dinks were busy fueling up for transport back to Earth. Alf nodded and walked over to the craft. "All aboard," he called out—needlessly, as the Tanners were all strapped in and ready to go already. "Captain Shumway would like to remind you to put out all cigarettes at this time and make sure your seats are upright and locked," he went on, hopping into the pilot seat.

"So you decided to come back to Earth after all, huh Alf?" Lynn asked him with a knowing smile.

"Yeah," Alf admitted, "I talked to Rhonda, and we agreed I wasn't quite ready yet—again. I'd still have a lot to do with you guys before I'd really want to leave."

"Thanks Alf," Brian hugged him.

"OK, let's not get too emotional, B," his friend told him, "It's not like anyone's dying or anything—yet."

"Please don't say that," Willie mumbled.

"I take it you haven't had the best of trips, Willie," his houseguest pointed out.

"Oh it's been wonderful," Willie told him, "I always wanted to be kidnapped by aliens, tortured unmercifully, almost executed, almost be killed escaping from an exploding planet, and be scared half to death that my son was killed. And as usual, I have you to thank for it, Alf."

"You're welcome," Alf patted him on the shoulder, "You see how exciting you life can be with me?"

"Dink dink dink dink dink dink dink," one of the Dinks announced, throwing a switch to open the bay doors. The dark of space lay before everyone below. "OK, lock up everyone, it's shove off time," Yogurt added.

"Thanks again, Yogurt," Lone Starr shook his hand one more time, "I hope we'll meet again in Spaceballs III."

"Unless my agent tells me otherwise, you betcha," Yogurt winked. Lone Starr nodded. Then he turned to Tripley and gave her a final goodbye hug. "Take care of yourself, Trip," he told her.

"I will," she said, giving him a thumbs-up, "Fly safely."

"You know it," Lone Starr said. Then he slowly walked over to the new Winnebago. "Take care, everyone," he said to them all.

"Dink dink," the Dinks told him as one.

"Watch the traffic on the express—" Alf started to say, by was cut off as the roof of the banana split ship lowered on his head. Gasping for air, he just managed to pull it back in before he asphyxiated. Nonplussed, he started the engine and revved it wildly. "Earth, he we come," he announced as he floored it—backwards into the wall. "Oops, I forgot the controls are the other way in this part of the galaxy," he said sheepishly.

"Alf, give me the controls," Willie ordered him, "We just can't having you joyriding…"

Alf paid no attention. He pressed what had to be about every button on the control panel before he finally hit the Forward switch. The banana split rocketed off into the cosmos toward Earth. Seconds later, Lone Starr took off with his brand new Winnebago and zoomed the other way. "Godspeed," Yogurt called after both crafts, "And may the Schwartz be with yooouuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!"


"Ah, no place like back in the solar system," Alf announced as his crafted exited the Centuri Wormhole and returned to a more familiar part of space. "Now if you'll look to the left," he pointed out the window, "You'll see Alvin and Dave, which I told you about numerous times before you believed me on them."

"So they really do exist," Kate mused, glancing at them.

'Of course," Alf said, "There was once two more planets right next to them…"

"Let me guess, Simon and Theodore?" Willie posed.

"Good Willie, you catch on quick," Alf congratulated him.

"Uh Alf, maybe we could slow up a bit?" Lynn suggested as Earth started getting very big in the window, "If we come in too fast, we might burn up, you know."

"I doubt that. This ship's Teflon coated. There not a chance we'd burn up, and if we do, we'd have roast cats in the trunk, which I might add are…"

"Alf, please slow down!" Willie protested. They were steadily accelerating as they plummeted past the moon and back toward the earth at any increasingly alarming rate of speed.

"Uh, I don't think I can," Alf admitted, fiddling with several switches, "I think the gravitational pull has us. On the bright side though, now you'll get to experience what I felt when I first fell to Earth."

"The bright side?" Willie was looking nauseated again, as did just about everyone else. The atmosphere started getting progressively bluer as they screamed along at an almost suicidal rate back toward Los Angeles. "For anyone who wants to use a vomit bag, they're right underneath the seats," Alf pointed out. Willie grabbed four of them at once and after bending down under the seat for privacy, began throwing up into all of them at once. The rest of the Tanners closed their eyes tight, hoping the flight wouldn't end in a fireball. It didn't, but did end with a loud crash that jarred everyone forward a bit. "And there you have it, folks," Alf said, turning off the engine, "Home sweet home."

"Alf, you've hit our garage again!" Kate shouted, noticing they were hanging through the ceiling, much as Alf's spaceship once had.

"I see," Alf said, "Well, some things are just as good the second time around."

"Just as good?" a frustrated Willie rose to his feet, "Between this and the repairs we're going to have to go through to get our house back to normal, you're going to bankrupt us, buster!"

"But you can't say it hasn't been a lot of laughs though, right?" Alf posed.

"No, I guess I can't," Willie admitted, "And I must say, I respect your decision to stay with us, Alf. We do really appreciate your caring for us as you do."

"As do we," came a familiar voice from behind the bulkhead. The next thing anyone knew, about a dozen Melmacians burst into the cockpit. "Skip, Larry, Curtis, what are you guys doing here?" an amazed Alf asked.

"Well, we figured that since you weren't coming back, we might as well spend some time with you," Skip explained, "It has been a while, after all."

"You can have my room, Skip," Brian offered him.

"Oh brother," Kate rolled her eyes.

"Oh Gordon," came the most attractive voice in the galaxy from the bulkhead. Alf broke into a big smile. "You guys go unload the luggage," he told his adoptive family, "I've got some catching up to do with…Rhonda."

He strolled casually out of sight and closed the door. Immediately, concurrent outbreaks of the irritatingly high Melmacian mating call echoed throughout the ship, causing every human to flinch in pain.

"Hey look, there's a cat out there," Larry had already found Lucky prowling around near the garage. Looking famished, Skip opened the door. "Here kitty, kitty, kitty," he called to him. Apparently sensing he was in danger, Lucky took off running. The Melmacians jumped out of the ship and ran after him in a pack.

"Willie….!" Kate gave him a restive glare.

"I know, I know!" Willie shook his head, "But I can't see any way out of it. We'll just have to lock them in the garage and see if we can pick up stray cats off the street for them. Let's just hope the Ochmoneks are out of town. I don't know what we could say to them."

"Hey I know what to say," Alf, covered in lipstick kisses, stuck his head out of the bulkhead, "It's good to be home."


"So, Barf, what did you think of the story?" Lone Starr asked him as they slipped back through the open air shield toward Druidia.

"The honest truth?" Barf inquired.

"Yeah, sure."

"Well, it could have been a little better in parts, but overall I think it was pretty good," Barf admitted, "There were a couple times when it got a little too serious, though. And I don't think they did enough with Vespa and the others back here on Druidia while we were out. I would have liked to have seen more from them."

"I can see that," Lone Starr mused, "Oh well, can't change it now. I think they handled most of us pretty well. Lynn may have been a little off, but they never completely defined any of them on TV, so I give them a little leeway with that. Just my opinion, though. I'd give it a B+."

"Sounds about right," Barf nodded, "Well, if they give us a third one, it's something to improve off of."

"That's the way to look at it," his boss agreed. He looked down below and saw the landing strip behind King Roland's castled. Home at last.

Inside the castle, everyone was taking steps away from the bathroom door, which was bulging outward from the water inside the bathroom pushing against it. "Uh, I just remembered, I left my oil cookies in the oven," a concerned Dot said out loud, wheeling away.

"Vespa, let me just say now, I don't think he's…" Roland started tell his daughter, but was forced to run for it as the door abruptly burst open, spilling water all over the place. Everyone was wiped down the corridors by the deluge. When it finally stopped, they were all soaking wet. "Is everyone OK?" Roland called to his subjects.

"No sire, I think Tar-Tar drowned," one of the pages pointed to a lifeless Tar-Tar on the floor. At the sight of this, everyone broke into a huge cheer. "He's dead at last!" Roland exclaimed in ecstasy, "Ring out the temple bells! It's a day of national celebration!"

"No, meesa OK, meesa…." Tar-Tar rose up, unnoticed by the throngs except for a guard, who whaled the creature over the head with his mace, apparently killing him for good. It was into this happy scene that Lone Starr stepped out from the bathroom. "Hey, why wasn't I invited to the party?" he asked, a big smile on his face.

"Darling," Vespa rushed to him, "What took you so long? You've been in their for almost four days now."

"I was, uh, really constipated," Lone Starr explained. Nobody seemed to notice that his coat was perfectly dry. The hero looked lovingly into his wife's eyes. "And boy am I glad I did," he said, "I know now that I love you more than ever."

He gave her a kiss on the lips that probably registered about an eight on the Richter scale. "Well you're sure happy," Vespa exclaimed, "I haven't seen you this thrilled since we went to that royal monster truck rally last Nathanganger."

"Yeah, well, everything's good in my world now," Lone Starr said, "What do you say we go make up for all those lost days in our royal bedroom?"

Vespa nodded. The two of them walked off hand in hand. "Uh, Barf," Roland walked up to the mawg, "Could you tell me what exactly's going on here?"

"I could, your Highness, but I doubt you'd believe me," Barf said, smiling after the couple, "But boy, is it good to be home again."

THE END…….

UNTIL ALFBALLS II: THE SEARCH FOR A WORTHWHILE SEQUEL