D/C: I don't own Cowboy Bebop. I don't own the idea of this story either; it's a property of the authoress, Theresa Green.

Hello!! Right, this is my first story for an anime which is turning to be quite an obsession for me. I just only finished watching all the episodes, and it was instant love. (laugh) Well, anyway, I'll stop babbling now and let you read. Enjoy!!

SPIKE SPIEGEL: The Owner's Guide and Maintenance Manual

Congratulations!! You are now the proud owner of a fully-automated SPIKE SPIEGEL unit. To ensure that you get the full use and benefits of your Bounty Hunter, please pay close attention to the following instructions.

Basic Information:

Name: Spike Spiegel ( a.k.a Space Cowboy)

Date of Manufacture: June 26, 2044

Place of Manufacture: The Planet Mars

Height: 5 feet, 8 inches

Weight: Lighter than it seems

Length: Non applicable

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Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit will come with the following accessories:

One yellow shirt.

One black tie.

One pair blue pants.

One blue jacket.

One pair blue shoes.

One silver lighter.

One pack of cigarettes.

One striped boxer shorts.

One white flannel shirt.

One Swordfish space-racer.

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Unpacking Your Unit:

When you first open the box containing your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, you will notice that he may be looking slightly ill-nourished, worn-out and bruised. However, with proper food and hospitalization, your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit will be up on his feet and ready to kick ass in no time!!

Do not mishandle, or drop, your unit while unpacking him, he will not appreciate it.

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Programming:

The SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is an all-purpose Bounty Hunter with many different talents. However, this unit will not put his talents to use in your service unless you promise him a pay to begin with. Once he's satisfied with the amount, he will function as follows:

Bounty Hunter: Do you need some money? Well, find yourself a decent bounty and ask your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit to go catch it for you, and you can rest assured that he will finish the job in no time! Of course, you have to put into consideration that most of your bounty money will go on : giving your unit his share of the bounty, and paying off for the repairs on the damages caused by the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit while he attempted to catch the bounty. (Please don't confuse a bounty with the Bounty (TM) chocolate bar.)

Pilot: Need a personal pilot? Driver, or anything in that field? Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit happens to be one helluva pilot. He can operate any vehicle; big or small. He can drive it through buildings and in space. You just have to sit back and enjoy the ride, because you sure are not going to forget it.

Kick-boxing Trainer: Are you being bullied and have no means of defending yourself, and would like to learn some form of combat? The SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is an excellent kick-boxing fighter, so good he can knock out an opponent in one single blow. Of course, you have to be prepared to be rejected several times before he actually agrees to train you, but when he does, you can be certain that you'll have a very good teacher.

Sniper: Do you need to have some one assassinated? Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has a very good hand with weapons, and will hit his target with one or two shots. He probably won't do the job for free, so be prepared to pay him up, or you'll get nothing.

Bodyguard: Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has all the qualities which compel him to be an excellent bodyguard, what with his excellent sniping and kick-boxing skills. Just take him out with you wherever you go, and he'll provide you with the sense of security that you need. Again, we must warn you that his services won't be for free.

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Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit comes with five different modes:

Sarcastic (default)

Irritated

Bored

Bruce Lee

Deadly

Please note that the Sarcastic setting and the Bored setting are entirely different, however similar they may appear to you. In the Sarcastic setting, the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit will be more likely making fun of some one, where as in the Bored setting, this unit would be probably complaining that there's are no interesting bounties around.

The Irritated setting is most likely activated when the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is having a difficult time while trying to catch a bounty, or when he's being hassled by the FAYE VALENTINE unit, or the ANDY VON DE ONIYATE unit. The Irritated setting is also activated when the unit is being forced to share his bounty money with the FAYE VALENTINE unit. He may also be just Irritated because he's surrounded by kids, or pets.

The Bruce Lee setting is activated whenever the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is engaged in a battle. He will most likely be using punches and kicks while in this setting, or he might retort to the use of guns. However, you must be aware that this setting will probably result in massive property damage, whose charges will be probably dropped on you.

The Deadly setting is activated whenever the JULIA unit is dead, or when the VICIOUS unit is around. At those times, it's best to avoid the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit because the only thing he'll be focused on is to kill the VICIOUS unit. This setting will cause both property damage and life loss.

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Relations with Other Units:

Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is not a very social character, and he especially hates pets, kids and women with attitude. However, when company is forced onto this unit, he will learn to interact with them, fight with them...and maybe even share his bounties with them - unwillingly, of course.

JET BLACK: The JET BLACK unit happens to be a former cop while he was in Ganymede, but dropped out of service when he lost his arm while chasing an escaped convict. He is also the pilot and the cook on board the Bebop space ship. Although he may act like he doesn't give a damn about what the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit does with his life, this unit will be really glad whenever he sees your unit again. Rough as he may seem, the JET BLACK unit has a hobby of tending to Bonsai trees. He also happens to be a bad cook.

FAYE VALENTINE: This woman is a lot older than she seems; even though she looks like a girl in her early twenties, the FAYE VALENTINE unit is approximately 77 years old, since she'd spent 54 years in suspended animation. She's a femme fatale of the finest kind. She may fancy the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, but she loves money a lot more, and will attempt to steal your unit's money and run away constantly. She will take any chance to tease your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, which usually drives him into the Irritated setting.

ED: The ED unit is a thirteen-year old girl who particularly forced herself on the Bebop. She has no parents, since her father had forgotten her in the day-care centre seven years ago and didn't even remember to look for her. She is playful, energetic and can hack into even the most secure of computer systems.

EIN: The EIN unit is the data dog that the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has picked up during one of his missions. Even though your unit will say that he hates the dog, it will be him who will bring the stray puppy home. He must be an animal-lover, after all.

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Other Unit Interactions:

VICIOUS: VICIOUS is the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit's all-time rival. Even though those two units used to work together for the RED DRAGON SYNDICATE collection, the VICIOUS unit turns against your unit once the latter starts seeing the JULIA unit, whom he happens to like. He also hates it that the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has faked his death to escape from the RED DRAGON SYNDICATE collection, and will try to kill your unit whenever he sees him. Try to avoid at all costs.

JULIA: This unit is the one your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit loves. She also happens to be the girlfriend of the VICIOUS unit, and is one of the reasons your unit and the VICIOUS unit want to kill each other. Be careful, though, the JULIA unit might attempt to kill your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, since she will be acting under the VICIOUS unit's orders. However, if you're lucky, the JULIA unit will pick you over the VICIOUS unit, and you'll escape being killed. Try to keep this unit safe and alive, for her death will probably drive the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit into the Deadly setting.

RED DRAGON SYNDICATE: This collection of units has to be avoided at all times, for they will only try to kill your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, because he had faked his own death to run away from them, which they really do not appreciate. Furthermore, interactions with this collection will tend to cause property damage; you've been warned.

ANDY VON DE ONIYATE: He's a character that your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit will run into while attempting to catch the TEDDY BOMBER unit from the BOUNTY collection. He also goes by the name "WYATT EARP". He was a member of the YMCA, but got kicked out for causing trouble too much trouble. He will tend to drive your unit into the Irritated setting whenever they meet. Try to avoid meetings between those two because it will result in property damage, and you'll be the one charged for repairs.

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Cleaning:

The SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is fully capable of cleaning himself and is aware of how to use the marvels of the modern day plumbing. However, if you still wish to assisting him afterwards…please notify the nearest Licensed Fan-Fiction Writer for any needed personality adjustments to your SPIKE SPIEGEL, since he probably won't be too happy having you washing him up.

The SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is also capable of drying himself properly, once you provide him with clean towels. However, there should be any programming failure, you'll be required to rub the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit dry with a towel. Do not dry-clean unit. Do not tumble dry unit. Do not machine-dry unit. Do not hang unit on clothes line to dry; he will not appreciate it.

Also, don't try combing your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit's hair; it probably won't stay flat for five minutes.

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Energy:

Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit will require you to feed him three meals a day, although he's able to live without anything to eat for a couple of days. However, if he's feeling really hungry, he will probably anything he can get his hands on. Be careful not to deprive him of delicacies, though, otherwise he'll sneak in something into your spare fridge, forget it there, and cause a massive growth of fungi which could be infectious. So, it's better to just feed him, anyway.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: When I first opened the box "supposedly" containing my SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, I found a gray-haired guy with wrinkles under his eyes, and a big crow on his shoulder, and keeps mumbling about taking over the RED DRADON SYNDICATE. Who the hell is he?

A: Oops. Looks like you've been sent the VICIOUS unit instead of the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit. If you still wish to receive the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, please send us back the VICIOUS unit, and we'll send you the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit - free of charge!! However, if you wish to hold on to the VICIOUS unit, we must warn you that he may betray you at any second, and might even attempt to blow you up. Good luck!

Q: I gave my unit a video tape to put in the VCR, but all he did was pull out the film! Isn't he supposed to know the modern day technology?

A: Actually, video tapes are not considered a part of the modern day technology. (What planet do you live on? Earth?) It's perfectly normal for the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit to not know how to use video tapes, because he's never seen one before in his life; all he uses is compact discs and CDs. As for you, go educate yourself.

Q: My SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is continuously being hunted down by a fat guy who calls himself PIERROT LE FOU. He also keeps blowing up my house!! What the hell?

A: The PIERROT LE FOU unit is a result of an ISSP Assassination Ability Improvement experiment, and he kills just for the sheer joy of it. He also goes by the following policy, "That which sees me cannot live to tell about it". Obviously, your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has had a run-in with this bounty, and that's why he's following your unit around. The best solution is to have them take their fight to a Fair, and hope the huge electronic teddy bears trample him.

Q: I'm really tired of having to pay repair costs for all the damage my SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has been causing!! I'm very close to bankruptcy now! It's driving me nuts! What can I do to stop my unit from causing so much damage?

A: We're really sorry, but we're afraid we can do nothing to stop your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit from causing damage; it comes with the job inscription. If you don't want to continue paying bills, then just have your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit perform a job other than bounty hunting and sniping.

Q: My SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is constantly being found in the Irritated setting, and I can't seem to get him out of it.

A: Has a certain FAYE VALENTINE unit been stealing your unit's bounty and running away with it? If so, then that's probably the cause of his irritation. Have the FAYE VALENTINE unit return the money to the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit and he'll be back to his normal state in no time.

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Troubleshooting:

Problem: Your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit is delusional, and he's found climbing heights.

Solution: Has your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit been given any form of mushroom by the ED unit? If so, then that's the cause of his delusions. He's not attempting to commit suicide or anything, so you needn't worry about that; it's just a side-effect of that mushroom, and will probably wear off in a few hours. Just keep a close eye on your unit until that happens.

Problem: The Swordfish belonging to your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has gone broke, and he's stranded in the middle of the desert and you don't know how to reach him.

Solution: Contact the DOOHAN unit to come and pick up your unit and his ship. The DOOHAN unit won't charge your unit a lot for repairs, and he will return the Swordfish back to its original state. Also, if you can't find the DOOHAN unit, you may contact the JET BLACK unit to come pick up your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit.

Problem: You came home and you couldn't find your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit, or his Swordfish, anywhere around.

Solution: Uh-oh. Looks like your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit has gone looking for the JULIA unit. Well, in this case, you most probably should start looking for the body of your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit in the remains of the RED DRAGON SYNDICATE collection's headquarters.

Problem: You can't find your pet poodle anywhere.

Solution: Well, this may not necessarily be the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit's fault, but since this unit is known for his hatred of pets, he'd most likely have taken it for a walk and lost it on purpose. At any rate, we suggest that you start putting up ads for your poodle with a decent reward.

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Warranty:

With proper care and maintenance, your SPIKE SPIEGEL unit will lead a full and (almost) happy life while living under your roof. His warranty is good for up to twenty-seven years, at which point you should be contacting the nearest cemetery to discuss burial procedures. If for some reason (say, huge repair bills) you can't stand to have a certain cowboy living under your roof, you should give him a tip on the current location of the JULIA unit, and he'll be off in no time. Of course, you may have to move yourself, because if the SPIKE SPIEGEL unit doesn't find the JULIA unit, he will be most likely driven into the Deadly setting.

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A/N: Well? What did you think? I have to tell you, it was getting pretty tough to write this by the time I got the questions, but I think I made a good job out of this. I really hope you liked it, at any rate, because I'll be wanting reviews!! Thanks for reading!

- S. N. B.