Jet strolled into the ISSP Earth headquarters, pulling a thin slip of paper from his pocket. Reading the slightly crumpled slip, he absently approached the front desk.
"Why, Jet Black! Is that you?" came a shocked voice from behind the desk. Jet looked up to find its owner. A man with mocha skin sat wearing a surprised smile. Grey dominated his once black hair and freckles dotted his nose. Jet quickly returned the smile.
"Jones? Adam 'Free Man' Jones! I don't believe it!" he laughed in response. "You ol' codger! What are you doin' way out here on Earth?"
"Well, you know, I got transferred from Ganymede," Jones replied. "They prob'ly figured I was gettin' too old so they shipped me out here to anchor the desk. Not much happens on Earth, you know."
"Well, I wouldn't say that much," said Jet. "Earth can be pretty happenin' sometimes."
"Yeah, from time to time," said Jones. "So, Jet, my man! Last time I checked I was older than you! What's with the bald spot?" he laughed.
"Well, I've got my crew to thank for that," Jet smiled, consciously rubbing his shiny head.
"Crew, huh?" Jones asked. "Been the captain of a ship since you left the ISSP?"
"You could say that," Jet replied, handing Jones the slip of paper he was fingering. Jones studied the paper, an amused smile overcoming his features.
IT IS HEREBY STATED THAT Jet Black & Co BE GIVEN FULL CREDIT FOR THE CAPTURE OF THE BOUNTY HEAD(S):
Johnathan Gu, Evan McDavitt, Timothy Martin, Oscar Burns, Henry Clemmons
BY: Tobias Yorke
(approving ISSP officer)
"So you're a bounty hunter now!" Jones said merrily. "Not too far from the old business, eh?"
"I guess not," Jet answered.
"You always were big on justice," speculated Jones. "And I taught you everything you know!" he laughed.
"I guess you deserve some credit, Free Man," Jet replied jovially.
Aboard the Bebop once again, Jet ducked through the small circular door that opened into the common area. He looked across the room, everything appearing as it should be. There were only two things that seemed a little irregular.
Spike sat in the yellow chair, his rounded boots propped on the coffee table and a lit cigarette perched between his lips. He looked through the foggy smoke at Faye, lying on the matching couch and shining in her yellow vinyl uniform. She seemed to be lying as neatly and dainty as she could, ankles crossed and an arm across her torso. She gently traced the bandages that wrapped around her small frame with lazy fingertips.
"So how was getting that bullet removed?" said Spike to the woman.
"Horrible! I think it was the worst pain I've ever felt and will ever feel again!"
"Even worse than childbirth?" he asked. Faye gave him a look.
"Are you speaking from experience?"
"No. Are you?"
Jet looked on with a sigh as the two loungers looked up at him. "You two look comfortable," he said, making his way down the stairs. "You're actually conversing." Spike gave a shrug.
"Hi, Jet!" Faye called to him sweetly. Jet raised an eyebrow.
"Uh-oh, she wants something," he said looking over at Spike. The green haired cowboy answered silently with an affirmative smile.
"What? Me?" Faye smiled. "What is there for me to possibly want?" Spike rolled his eyes.
"The money's already in your account, Faye. Is that all?" Faye gave a nervous chuckle.
"You know me too well, Jet," she said, smiling coyly. "Anyway, I hate to have gotten your attention for no reason," she sang. "Could you at least just do me one tiny little favor and get me a drink?"
Jet looked at Spike again. "Spike," he said.
"She's your woman."
He walked over to the next available seat, the chair at his research station as Spike stood, stretching his long arms over his head.
"Yeah, I guess you're right," he said, approaching Faye. "She is my woman, isn't she?" He leaned over her with a grin, taking her chin between finger and thumb. Faye smiled up at him, batting her bejeweled eyes. Slipping her hand over his, she guided his fingers to her cheek.
"Ow!" he suddenly exclaimed. He looked at Faye, seeing two of his fingers wedged between her pearly teeth.
"What did I say about patronizing, Spike?" she said after he'd pulled free. She wore a mischievous smile. Spike frowned, standing up again and shoving his hand deep into his pocket. With a sigh, he lumbered off to the kitchen.
Jet sat watching in amusement. It had been just as funny to him as the first time Spike was bitten by Ein. "I swear, you two…" he said, resting his head on his good hand.
"Us two what?" Faye answered, still smiling.
"Well, you might as well get married. You act like you've been in it for years."
Faye's smile slightly faded. "We do, don't we?" she asked whimsically. She laced her fingers over her head, looking at the woven pattern they made. Jet grew nervous and regretful of bringing up such a subject.
"So, where's Ed?" he asked, changing the topic.
"I dunno," Faye replied. "Probably out there by the revolver or something."
"Hmm." Jet lifted one leg over the other, reclining in his chair.
"So, you're leaving Earth soon?" asked Nikolai, his face in a square on the monitor of Edward's tomato.
"Yah," the girl replied with a slow nod. She lie on the cold floor of the Bebop in front of her computer screen, her hands holding up her golden face. "Faye-Faye got released from the hospital today."
"Oh yeah," the boy said. "How is Faye doing?" he asked sincerely.
"Faye-Faye is fine-fine!" said Ed. "She and Spike-person are back to fighting again!"
"Fighting? That doesn't sound good."
"Oh, it's normal," the girl replied. "First they bicker, bicker, bicker, and then they stop bickering, bickering, bickering, and then Faye-Faye pretends to be really sad or really mad so Spike-person will make her happy again!"
"I guess the end justifies the means," Nikolai laughed, trying to conceal a blush.
"Yup! Only now Spike-person isn't giving Faye-Faye happy. Maybe because of her battle scar!" she announced triumphantly.
"That makes sense," Nikolai nodded.
"Ooh! Guess what!" Ed gleamed. "Papa Jet collected our reward money today too! Edward gets fifteen million smackeroos!" she laughed gleefully.
"Wow! That's a lot of money!" Nikolai said, wearing a surprised smile. "You get all that to yourself?"
"Well, everyone else on Bebop-Bebop gets fifteen million as well, but Ed will share her share with Ein!" Edward grinned.
"Every dog gets his day," Nikolai chuckled.
"I wish I could share it with you too, Nikki-Moose," she said, her face suddenly turning into a pouting frown.
"Nah," Nikolai humbly declined. "I didn't do anything. You can't reward me."
"But Nikki! You saved me! Saved me and Ein from certain death!" she praised. "We would never have made it without you!" she enthused, clasping her hands in desperation. "I should at least buy something for you, Nikki. What do you want?" she demanded eagerly. Nikolai smiled.
"To be honest, Ed, I wouldn't mind another visit from you."
"That's all?" Ed questioned. "Nikki-Moose wants nothing else?"
"Nope, nothing else," the boy replied.
"Well," she resolved, "when I visit, I will bring Nikki-Moose a surprise!"
"I can't wait, moi Agonye," he smiled. Edward grinned widely.
"Hee hee hee hee!" she laughed, delightfully rolling over. She arched her back, looking at the monitor upside down. "Being your agonye makes me happy," she sighed.
"Me too," Nikolai replied with a warm smile. He watched as she scrambled up into a sitting position, her legs criss-cross before the monitor. Just then, she heard another voice.
"Hey, Ed." The girl looked around and spotted Jet, poking his head into the corridor where she sat.
"Yah?" she responded cheerfully.
"Dinner'll be ready in less than an hour. Wanna give me a hand?" the man asked, wearing a paternal smile.
"Edward will join you shortly!" she announced, offering a salute. She looked down at Ein; the dog had waddled up and sat by her side, his front paws draping over her leg. Giving him a scratch, she returned her attention to her tomato monitor.
"Ok," Jet replied, wandering away. He wiped a hand on his apron as he walked. The hacker sighed to her computer.
"Ed is sad to be leaving Earth," she said. "But Ed will be back! Bebop-Bebop travels all over the galaxy!"
"Are you guys usually really busy?" Nikolai asked hopefully.
"Nope." Ed stroked Ein's furry body as she talked. "Business is slow an awful lot. But now that we have so much money, Jet-person might take us on a vacation!"
"Ooh! Where will you go?" Nikolai asked excitedly.
"Ed does not know. And Faye-Faye would be mad if we planned something before she gets all better. But! Maybe Nikki can come!" Ed watched as Nikolai's face registered surprise. "Ed might be able to… pull a few strings!" she said with a coy grin. "That's it! That will be Ed's surprise for Nikki-Moose!" she chimed. "Travel on a journey all across the globes! Where we'll stop, nobody knows!" Nikolai smiled.
"That would be awesome!" he laughed. "But I do have school though," he said, leaning back in his chair on the other end of the connection.
"I'm sure we could work around that!" Ed said. She gave him a reassuring wink. Nikolai gave a chuckle. "I have to go help papa Jet now," she said.
"Ok," he answered. "I'll see you soon,, Moi Agonye."
"Bye-bye, Nikki-Moose!" Ed giggled. She blew Nikolai a kiss before cutting off her connection. After her screen went blank, she stared at it for a while, wishing it wasn't so easy to get rid of him. She was reawakened by Ein's cold nose nuzzling her arm. Looking down at the dog, she gave a smile. "Ok, pup-pup, let's go!" She hopped up and soared away to the kitchen, with Ein in toe.
"Soup's on," Jet finally called from the kitchen. He and Edward brought dishes of food into the living area one by one and placed them on the coffee table.
"Ma-a-a-ashed potatoes!" Sang Ed as she placed a bowl down. She danced away, ready to fetch another dish. Faye looked at the coffee table from her post on the couch, eying the food.
"Smells delicious!" she said hungrily as Jet placed before her a plate with a slab of London broil.
"Those last two bounties pretty much have us set for a while. Now we can afford more variety," the big man replied happily, placing his fists on his hips. Faye was amused by the combination of his manly stance and the frilly apron he wore. She heaved herself upright, milking her injury for all it was worth. Jet headed back to the kitchen, when Ed reappeared.
"Boc Choy!" Edward announced, returning with another bowl. A small stack of plates sat precariously atop her fiery mane of hair. In her hand was a cluster of four forks and knives. The girl placed the bowl down carefully before haplessly dropping the silverware. She gave a twirl before removing the plates from her head.
Jet returned once more, carrying with him carving utensils. As he placed them next to the London broil, Spike suddenly peeped his head around the corner, drawn by the savory smell of beef. Looking around, he slowly stepped into the room and descended the metal staircase. His shirtless figure bore a white towel draped over the shoulder; the waistband of his sweat pants darkened with the moisture of exertion. Smearing the fabric of the towel over his damp hair and face, the thin cowboy descended onto the couch in the empty space next to Faye. "About time, Jet," he said, reaching over her to grab a plate, fork and knife. "I'm starving."
"Lured by the smell of my cooking again, eh Spike?" Jet asked, grinning.
"Don't flatter yourself," Spike replied unemotionally.
"I thought so," Jet answered with a smile. Knowing how hungry everyone was, and fearing that Spike would stake claim on the London broil any second now, he sat in the old yellow chair, picked up the carving utensils and began slicing the meat.
"Food! Food! Glorious food!" sang Ed, watching each slice of beef fall tenderly to the plate it was on. She plopped onto the floor beside the table. With her fork, she hurriedly stabbed the end piece and bit into it, leaving it to dangle from between her white teeth.
"Hey!" said Spike. "I wanted that!"
"You lose if you snooze, Spike-person!" the hacker teased, muffled by the slice of red meat.
"Ed," Jet reprimanded. "Don't do that; you're gonna puncture somebody's hand with that fork! Spike, chill out, there's another end on this thing!" He spoke to Spike in the same tone.
"What about me?" asked Faye frantically. "I want the end!"
"Talk to Spike," Jet gruffed.
"Sorry, Faye," Spike smirked at her. "I called it." Faye answered him with a glare. Edward gave a light giggle as she scooped some of Jet's mashed potatoes onto her plate. Faye redirected her leer. Soon Ein joined the gathering as well, taking a seat beside Ed on the floor.
The dog gave a whine, looking up at Jet, than Ed. Ignored by all except the hacker, he slipped the tip of his nose onto the table.
The quartet gobbled at their food, forks stabbing and knives scraping on each plate. Words were rarely spoken at the dinner table, the time and place when everyone was satisfied and contented.
"Ein! Gimme that back!"
For the most part, anyway.
...That's it! The End! 46 chapters of pure Cowboy Phunk! Woot! That took a lot out of me. x.x Well, now that there's no more, I hope to get at least a few more reviews. I wanna know what you think! It's been awesome writing, and I should return with yet another Beboptacular story in a little while. I hope you enjoyed! n.n
We all know that the wonderful creation of Cowboy Bebop the original series had absolutely nothing to do with me. However, just when you thought it was the end, I added yet another original character! For Jones, I had this picture of Morgan Freeman in my head, hence the nickname. Or perhaps, now that I think of it, Beau Billingslea (voice of Jet Black!) They have the same kinda vibe. n.n