DISCLAIMER: For starters, I would like to say that I do not own Outlaw Star. I don't own any of the characters in this story except for John. He's mine. So Bandai, and all the creaters of Outlaw Star, please don't sue me. Also I don't own the lyrics or music in 'Anthem of our dying Day', a Story of the Year song.

True Strength comes from the Heart.

Chapter 1: A typical Day

"Hey Jimmy!"

The quiet rooms of the new Starwind and Hawking building were broken by the shrill sound of a high pitched voice. Jim was busy programming new protocols that Gillium could chew on when his concentration was broken by the cheery voice that could only belong to the former planet potentuary. "What is it Aisha!" Jim replied with annoyance. "I just got home and I'm bored, why don't you play some video-games with me?" she yelled ignoring his obvious annoyance. "I can't now, I'm busy programming some new programs for the job that me and Gene have taken up, and If I don't finish before tomorrow, we'll be out 70,000 wong." "Jim don't gimmie that. You know as well as I do that 10 minutes out of your time won't interfere with your work." It was Aisha's turn to be annoyed. "Fine I'll play you five matches in that fighting game of yours, but don't get mad if you lose all five!" "Ha! with my superior abilities and reflexes there's no way that you can beat me!" Aisha bellowed at the young outlaw.

It had been three years since the Leyline incident, and although considerable time has passed, little has actually changed. Gene and Melfina were very happy with each other, but they had been good to take their relationship very slowly. Gene's favorite slogan had changed from "when we make it big" to "when we make it big we'll get married and have kids." Suzuka was as stoic as ever, but about a year ago she had received a mysterious letter in the mail and decided to leave. She came back every once and awhile, but she mostly stayed away. Aisha still hadn't received the free ride from the Ctarl-Ctarl Empire that she was hoping for. Jim on the other hand was now 14, and had been lucky enough to receive a few growth spurts, he was now almost as tall as Gene. This of course only added fuel to Fred Lou's fiery desires, who continued to make advances on Jim and Gene. But all though they were better off, the happy workers of Starwind and Hawking were still flat broke.

"So, what's this new job that requires brand new software for the Outlaw Star?"

"Fred told us about a big bounty-head near Sentinel who calls himself the Doppleganger. He's wanted in three systems for grand theft, murder, kidnapping, and extortion."

"Can I see a picture of him after this match? I wanna know the face that s gonna earn me a nice cut!"

"Unfortunately Aisha, showing you a face of the Doppleganger wouldn't do you any good. You see, he is not a humanoid like the rest of us, but a special bio-mechanical organism that can inhabit and control the bodies of other people like us. So I can only show you what Doppleganger himself looks like."

Jim paused the game and walked over to his palmtop. He typed a few keys and waited, when the picture came up he showed to his female friend. "You see this is what he actually looks like."

"He looks like a worm! You mean to tell me that we gotta track down a worm thats worth Seventy thousand wong?!!"

"Well, yeah!"

"Whatever, how do we go about catching this guy if we don't know what he looks like?" She asked "I mean if he can inhabit other bodies how are we supposed to track him down?"

"Thats actually pretty simple" Jim replied with a wry smile. "We track him down in his ship! You see our friend may be a little slippery on the ground, but when he's in space he gets careless. Three days ago he stole a ship from the security forces on Tenrei. It was an experimental grappler ship with brand spankin new cloaking and sensor jamming technology."

"If it has new jamming technology how are we going to track it? And how do you know someone else hadn't already claimed the bounty?"

"Easy, if the bounty was already claimed it would already be taken off the wanted list on the Security Forces site. As for tracking him thats what the adjustments for the sensors are for. The ship and the technology may be new, but the security forces aren't giving out any other information on how to cut through the jamming waves."

"That doesn't answer my question Jimmy."

"I'm getting to it. You know how ether wave sensors work right?"

"Right I got an A in ether wave tracking in the academy."

"Well the SF may have been reluctant on giving out information on their baby, but I did a little digging in their main computer system and found out that a certain ether wave sensor frequency can't be jammed. So all we have to do is just use the modified sensors to find his ship, then we do what we do best!"

"Your such a genius Jimmy!" Aisha said ruffling his hair. "You know I gotta figure out what you eat that makes you such a smart kid!"

"Heh heh, I'm not a kid, I'm fourteen" he said pushing away her hand.

"Oh RIGHT, your a man now. The big 1-4. Well whatever you are, you still need to give me the other three matches that you promised!"

"What the hell are you talking about? OH other three matches! Okay get ready to lose!"

They went on like that. Playing, trash talking, throwing insults. Jim concluded that the sensor mods could wait and decided to spend the rest of the afternoon playing the fighting game that Aisha loved so much. She'd been telling him that he needed to relax more for three years.

"For more then three years...." he whispered.

"Did you say something Jimmy?"

"Huh? Oh no, uhh nothing. Hey look I'm gonna go take a nap, wake me when Mel finishes dinner okay?"

"Sure thing Jimmy!"

He walked slowly to his room, thinking about the past with every step. He opened his door and closed it behind him gently. He paced over to his bed and sat down. It was totally unintentional, but he suddenly found himself thinking about Hannmyo. He still remembered her very vividly; her short dark hair, agile and graceful movements, her cats, and her affinity towards having childish fun. It was a very good dream that Jim played in his mind over and over again. He kept thinking that he could've done something different, something that might have changed how things turned out. But the more he thought about it, the more he realized that nothing could be different. She had stood him up, and what he should of gotten over a long time ago, only now it bothered him every single time he was having fun.

"Whatever I'm going to sleep."

"Gene keep your eyes on the road!" Melfina screamed as the sight of an incoming semi startled her.

"Sorry Mel, I got carried away." Gene said as he swerved back into normal traffic.

"Well you can talk all you want, but make sure that your eyes stay focused on your driving."

"Okay Mel, I was talking about our new bounty head. Its a guy who calls himself the Doppleganger. He's a mechanical worm that can inhabit and control the bodies of any living organism. He's managed to stay alive for an untold number of years moving from one body to the next. Because he's switched bodies every few weeks, he's become a very slippery bastard."

"That sounds dangerous. If he can body jump how are we supposed to catch him?"

"Well we got a two-part plan Mel; Jim's working on a way how we can track him in the ship he stole, and when we find him, we'll force him to land on Sentinel and that's when we use this baby on him." Gene said with confidence as he patted the gun that Fred had "loaned" him.

"Okay I got everything about how your going to catch him, but how is that gun going to allow us to catch him?"

"Actually Mel I don't know, Fred said that its some old Earth technology and had just been sitting around in his collection. He called it an EMP gun. It will either stun him or kill him, but he said it might have some sort of negative affect on you, so when we make planet-fall on Sentinel I want you on the ship where you'll be safe okay?"

"Fine Gene but promise me you won't get hurt."

"Ah Mel, you don't have to worry about me!" He said with a big grin. "I've done tons of jobs like this it's just a typical bounty-head that just managed to steal a very good SF ship. We'll be fine!" He said with confidence. "Anyway we'll be home soon, what do ya got planned for dinner honey?"

"Hawaiian chicken and beef with white rice."

"Do ya need my help?"

"No thanks Gene, you started a fire the last time you 'helped' me with dinner. I'm still trying to figure out how you managed to start a fire with cold-cuts!"

"Hey its not my fault! I burned my hand on the oven!"

"The oven wasn't on!"

"Well whatever, here we're home now. I'll go get the squirt and the food-vacuum to help with the groceries."

Gene pulled Jim's Efhrau up to the SH building and got out. He exclaimed as he opened the door in a very loud voice: "Hey Jim! Aisha! Come help get the groceries!"

"Yay! Food!" Aisha bellowed as she ran outside.

"Aisha where's Jim?" Gene asked as he was walking inside with arms filled with perishables.

"He said he wanted to take a nap."

"So? Go wake him up."

"No he's probably pretty tired so I'm gonna leave him alone."

"Well the sooner we can get these groceries in the sooner we can get dinner ready."

"Please don't tell me your working on dinner! Please don't tell me you are!"

"Ahhhhh! Everybody's makin a fuss! The fire wasn't my fault you animal!"


The rest of the evening was spent talking, eating, and going over the plan. Jim had woken up on his own and quickly eaten his food so he could continue working on the sensor modifications while Aisha continued to gorge herself on Melfina's cooking, Gene and Mel decided to take a walk to get some more 'alone time'. Even though Gene didn't say it, he was very anxious about tomorrow. He wanted to make sure that he and Mel spent some time together just in case something bad did happen.

The stars will cry, The Blackest tears tonight!

And this is the moment that I live for,

I can smell the ocean air!

Here I am, pouring my heart unto these rooftops!

Just a ghost to the world, thats exactly...

Exactly what I need!

From up here the city lights burn,

Like a thousand miles of fire,

And I'm here to sing this Anthem,

Of Our Dying Day!

John looked looked out the window of the ship to look at sentinel. It had been two weeks since he had approached by a ctarl-ctarl middle aged man about a 'job'. He was told to wait to in the sentinel system tell the XGP intercepted him. The old-Earth music that he had been listening to had not help his mood as much as he wanted it to, in fact none of the old music he listened to made him feel any better. The old music used to make him feel better, but lately all it did was bring up bad memories.

"Oh well, no amount of money would be able to get me what this guy can give me." He said to no one in particular. He turned the music off, and went over the plan again mentally.

The plan would be a simple one, he would simply antagonize the crewmembers of the XGP, harass the ctarl-ctarl girl, and leave the rest to fate. Hopefully, God would give him what he has wanted for so long.


Chapter 1: End

Okay guys and gals, how did you like the first chapter? Just so you know this story is going to be pretty long. You can expect Chapter 2 in a few weeks or so. I thought it was good, but that leads me the best thing about fanfiction besides writing it and reading it. The comments. To those who actually read my first entry in to fanfictiondom, can you please take the time to review it? Flamers will be ignored, constructive criticism will be noted. Thanks!