Author's Notes: Silly little story, entry to the KFM challenge "Fear."
The relative silence of a ship in hyperspace is usually only broken by the hum of the engines and ticking of the power couplings. Usually. That silence was broken by an ear-piercing shriek, followed by curses in six different galactic languages.
Atton Rand burst into the common area where Mira, Mical, and the Exile Jedi, Jennyl Arren, sat discussing the situation on Onderon, their current destination.
Jennyl looked up at the scoudrel, concern written across her face. "Atton, what's the matter?"
"Yeah, you look like you've seen a ghost!" Mira chimed in.
"Worse," the scoundrel said, shuddering. "Much, much worse…"
"Interesting. I thought one who had been 'to every corner of the galaxy' would not be startled easily," Mical jibed, not missing the chance to do so infront of the Exile.
Atton's look of fear turned to one of anger and he turned his sights to the Disciple. "Oh, yeah, well I'll just bet you-"
Jennyl raised a hand. "Enough. Let's play nice kids," she admonished them. "Now, Atton, what happened?"
The scoundrel glanced behind him, as though expecting a hind attack. "I was napping at the controls, since there's not much to do in hyperspace. Something tickled my face, so I brushed it aside. I opened my eyes and found eight huge beady ones staring back at me! This fracking huge spider was sitting on my chest! I hate spiders!" He visibly shuddered at the memory.
Mira gave Atton a look of pure disbelief. "All that commotion… over a spider?"
'Well then, I guess I'll go examine our latest… 'foe,'" Mical chuckled and started towards the cockpit.
Atton glared at the boy.
"Atton, I'm suprised something like that would bother you so much," Jennyl commented, hiding a smile behind her hand.
"Yeah… well… bad experience as a kid…" the scoundrel muttered, turning red. "I was five years old, visiting the local zoo, and the Black Devaronian Spider had escaped… that thing was twice my size! I swear, if he brings that thing here I'm going to-"
"And here we are," Mical appeared in the doorway, holding the 'fracking huge' spider. It was mottled bright green and black with red eyes and hairy legs, about the size of the boy's hand.
Atton yelped and ducked behind the Exile. "Keep that thing away from me! It's poisonous, I know it!"
"Actually," the Disciple countered in a condescending tone. "It's a Dxun Leaf Spider, specifically, a female looking for a place to lay her eggs." He paused as Atton blanched and shuddered again. "She's completely harmless, unless you happen to be an arboreal insect. Her fangs can't pierce a human's flesh."
"Well, that's a relief," Jennyl smiled. "Let's put it in a box or something so we can release it when we get back to Dxun."
"Or we can space it?" Atton suggested anxiously.
Mical's face remained straight, but his eyes took on a mischieveous glint. He took a small step towards the scoundrel, who choked back an expletive and backed up even further. Another step. Atton yelped said expletive and nearly bowled over Bao-Dur, coming in from the hangar bay.
The Zabrak blinked in surprise. "Uh, General… what's going on?"
"Mical, stop torturing the poor man," Jennyl chuckled. "Atton found a stowaway, Bao. Seems we picked up a spider on Dxun and Atton… well… he doesn't like spiders. I don't suppose you have a box or something lying around that we can keep her in until we get back to Dxun?"
"Sure thing, General," Bao-Dur replied and shortly returned with an empty plasteel cylinder. Jennyl opened the seal and Mical gently placed the spider inside.
"I'll go tell Atton its safe to come out now," Mira chuckled. "A guy like him, afraid of spiders… wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it."
Later that evening…
A dark figure stalked through the corridors of the Ebon Hawk, pausing long enough to pick up the plasteel cylinder and deposit it at a new location. The only sounds heard was that of the creaking airlock door and the whoosh of air of something being jettisoned.
Jennyl Arren woke from her slumber and wandered into the common area where Atton was cheerfully fixing up a pot of caffa. He handed the Exile a steaming mug, and she nodded in thanks. Then she noticed the empty corner.
"Atton… where's the box?" she asked carefully, though she already had a pretty good idea.
The scoundrel choked on his caffa. "Well, I… uh…"
HK-47 took that moment to saunter into the common room. "Statement: Master, the meatbag Rand was slinking through the corridors with a large cylinder during the sleep cycle. Musing: I believe the meatbag jettisoned it."
If looks could kill, the droid would have been reduced to a pile of smoldering rubble from the glare it received from Atton.
"Atton, you didn't!" The Exile exclaimed.
"Well… you see… I…" he tried to explain but was interrupted by a high-pitched shriek coming from the medbay.
"Mical!" Jennyl gasped. Both raced to the med bay.
Books and papers were scattered about, with the Disciple balanced precariously on the edge of the cot, eyes locked onto a corner of the room.
"Mical, what's wrong?" Jennyl asked, concerned.
"There's a… a…" the boy stuttered, pointing at a pile of papers.
Atton smugly walked over and started ferreting through the papers. "Let's see…"
"Be careful, Atton. It may be another stowaway from Dxun, and one not so… Oh, look, it's so cute!" The Exile exclaimed as Mical shrieked again.
In his hand, the scoundrel held a small, furry rodent, no larger than his thumb. It blinked curiously and curled up in his palm. "It's… a mouse. Just a mouse. Really, all that commotion over a mouse?"
"Just get it out of here!" Mical yelled, turning red and gesturing furiously at the door.
Atton shrugged and took it with him.
Jennyl stood in the doorway and shook her head. Who would have thought that the men I travel with were such wimps?