Recap: Sky Captain and Franky are off to meet up with their contact, which has been revealed to be a high ranking officer in the enemy's navy. Dex gained a new ally, but lost a man who he thought was his friend.
A/N: Forgive my hiatus. I couldn't come up with anything to write and I didn't want to half-ass it….that, and I was too busy failing at life.
Disclaimer: I do not own anything Sky Captain related, but I do have the DVD and it plays wonderfully in my PS3.
It took two flasks of whiskey, one of which was Franky's, before Joe even thought about sleeping last night. The guilt of having once again slept beside his best friend, the guilt of knowing he had betrayed the man he loved, and the guilt that he had let Dex be swept off by some bastard by the name of Westbrook had worn heavy on him all throughout the night. Dreams of Dex being tortured like he had been in Manchuria plagued him throughout the wee ours of the morning, the time at which he had almost been able to sleep, and had him drenched with sweat and worried.
"Would you please try to keep it together, Joseph, some of us would like to not be nearly thrown off a perfectly comfortable bed." Franky's voice startled him as he lay awake, his back turned to her so that he would be nowhere near touching her. They had slept in the clothes that they wore the day before, their thought process being that they could get a head start and make their rendezvous with their contact. It didn't matter to him, though, because he couldn't stand making physical contact at the moment, even if it was fully dressed in their daily attire.
"Sorry, Franky." He mumbled, his voice raw as he spoke, trying to sound as if he were the normal, snarky Sky Captain. He couldn't stand it if Franky pitied him any more than he knew she did now. No, he would have to act like they were going to save the day and Dex was going to be no worse for wear, just like he was the last time he was kidnapped.
A small smile grew on the Sky Captain's face as he thought about the last great adventure they'd all been on together. Everything had ended bright and well, even though Polly had forgotten to take the lens cap off of her camera in the end. That moment, however, wasn't as great as when they'd returned to base and began to rebuild. No, nothing could have been as great as he and Dex practically professed their undying love for each other. A chuckle almost made its way past his lips before he stopped himself, his mind automatically returning to recent events. The urge to beat his head against the headboard for being so stupid was quickly repressed, but barely held back.
"Joe. It's oh-five-hundred hours, we have clearance to leave now, so stop having a mental war and let's get on with our mission." Franky's voice came from behind him, surprising him once again at her stealth as he hadn't even noticed her getting up from the bed and gathering up her gear. Joe immediately sat up and began to gather his things, stopping only to open his nightstand's drawer and pull out a pack of double-bubble. A sentimental smile grew on his face before his whole expression changed to that of determination, his brow furrowing in mock anger. Quickly he finished gathering all of his things, including the gum, and with a quick few strides to the door, he was ready. With a quick look to the woman beside him he opened the door, words no longer needed between the two aviators as they exited the room.
Dex felt as if the Kommandant was trying to turn him into stone, or, at least, he'd deduced that after twenty minutes of being stared at. Dex could easily understand why the man was a high ranking official, even without the large display of war medals and the iron cross staring him in the face. The want to slowly slide out of his seat and underneath the table crossed Dex's mind before he mentally shook it, not quite understanding why he was so undeniably scared of the man.
True, the Kommandant was a Nazi and had most likely killed a lot of people or had been the reason why many had died, but the man was risking his life for Dex and potentially saving hundreds of thousands of others. They had taken Dex for one reason and one reason only, and that was because he was literally a certifiable genius. He had created the technology for the ability to fly a plane underwater, he'd created a ray gun, an air force base that actually flew in the air, and had easily taken down one of the top minds of science, Totenkopf. Although the last one he'd had help with, the others had been all him, and he had so many ideas for so much more, he was scared.
What if the Kommandant was killed trying to get him out of there? What if Joe and Franky were killed trying to save him? What would happen if West mentioned to one of the crew that his lover was a man? What if they found out that his family had some Jewish heritage? The 'what ifs' began to run so quickly through Dex's brain that he felt dizzy and disoriented; each what if bringing with it scenarios of death and despair. It wasn't until a large hand grasped his shoulder that he felt stable enough to notice that the Kommandant was no longer sitting across from him, but kneeling next to his chair, his hand on his shoulder in a form of comfort. Dex's eyes widened a fraction of an inch as he body became rigid at the notion of any contact with the man, no matter how helpful he had been. The other man immediately retracted his hand and stood, noticing the way the mechanic tensed up under his touch.
"I apologize; I only meant to make sure you were alright." The Kommandant's tone was soft and understanding, a tone that Dex would have never expected from him, but apparently came out of the man all the same. He had spoken the same calm, easy way to Dex when they had been planning his means of escape the other day and yet still it caused the young mechanic a sliver of surprise.
"Naw, it's alright Kommandant, I just….I'm just…." Dex trailed off, unable to finish his thought as another formed in its place.
"Say, Kommandant….how come you're trying to defect?" He questioned the man who had returned to his seat across the table, the same one that they had sat at yesterday when he was 'questioned' by the other man. Icy blue eyes connected with his as their gazes met and for once in his life, Dex thought he'd gone a bit too far.
'Something Joe would do on a daily bases.' Dex nearly laughed at the thought before, he reigned himself in and managed return the intense stare that Kommandant seemed to be so especially good at. Several minutes passed by, their staring contest taking precedence over their ability to speak to each other before a sigh fell from the other man's lips and he looked away.
"I guess, since we've got some time before we meet up with my contact from Britain, I could tell you why I became an informant." The older man seemed resigned as his spoke, causing Dex's brow to furrow in confusion while the other man's face became somewhat of a myriad of emotions.
"In nineteen thirty-three  we all hoped that we would save ourselves by electing him to office. By nineteen thirty-nine  we were practically out of debt and we had built an army. We put our faith in the devil." The Kommandant's voice was soft, almost like a whisper, but his German accent was more pronounced somehow. His shoulders seemed to slump as his eyes became fixated on his own hand on the table, its ungloved paleness standing out against the table's slate grey backdrop.
"I joined the army in nineteen thirty-nine in an attempt to make my father proud of me, as he had fought and served during the First World War. I was commended for terrible things; crimes that I should have never committed. I was so naïve and caught up by the Füher's message that I forgot how to be human; that is, until my unit was marched through Germany and parts of Austria. I was a part of Kristallnaucht , I was part of the invasion of Poland , and now, at the age of thirty I am old." The older man raised his gaze to meet Dex's; sorrow filling it passed the brim so that one streak of salty moisture trekked down his cheek.
"The last straw was when my men and I were to assist in the guarding of internment camps." The Kommandant's gaze fell once again to the table, hiding his face under the brim of his hat and displaying the 'hail Hitler'  that was placed upon it. Dex repressed a shudder as he listened, watching the man before him with both disgust and pity.
"I saw what we'd done to them. I never knew true cruelty until that camp; I was never as cruel as I was there. I became a monster…until I met him." The emphasis on the word 'him' seemed to resonate in Dex's mind, making him even more curious about the man before him that he had been originally.
"I was on guard duty in the barracks, as it was the night off for one of the other lieutenants and I was situated at the front entrance. They had just brought along a new batch of prisoners and were still situating them to the horrors of the labor camps. They didn't know all the rules or how to act around us in the new environment quite yet, but they still needed to know their place," He paused at this, his hand on the table reaching up to wipe his face off slightly, "Or so I used to think. I was alert, on watch, and determined to be the perfect Scheisskopf Nazi . I had been on guard for most of the night and would soon turn my duty over to Herr Schweighöfer  when I heard humming."
"You heard humming?" Dex slapped a hand over his mouth as quickly as he spoke, his eyes widening as far as they could go in trepidation.
"I'm sorry, Kommandant, when I don't have gum I start talkin' like Cap'n and I get all ridiculous and-."
"I understand, it's a very odd thing to say. Your disbelief is easily understandable, Dexter." The Kommandant cut Dex off by raising his hand in the air in a placating gesture and speaking up, his voice once again returning to its normal state. Dex could only nod as he was once again befuddled by the older man.
"As I was saying, I heard humming," The Kommandant paused to glance at Dex, making sure he had returned to his story before continuing on, "Generally, the prisoners would keep quiet except for very low whispers; most of the time, though, they tried to sleep as much as they could; so, when I heard humming, I went in to investigate."
Dex nodded, a pure reaction to make sure the other man knew he was following him.
"I found him lying in the bottom bunk, his eyes closed, and his fingers swiftly mimicking a pianist's movements. He seemed not to take any notice of me; he just kept playing his invisible piano. I stood in silence, watching him, waiting for him to finish his piece before I knelt down next to him and shone my torch in his face." The officer seemed to be lost in the memory as he once again stopped to let this information sink in, his eyes almost glazed over as he stared above my head, seemingly remembering the event.
"What happened then?" Dex interrupted, his voice betraying his interest in the tale like a little kid would any tale. A small smile broke the cold look to the man across from Dex, making him seem just for that second like any other man instead of a person who orchestrated the murders of probably hundreds.
"He finally noticed me and flinched back, holding his hand up to the light and saying 'God, Lieutenant, could you not shine that light in my face? I'm trying to play here.' To say that I was stunned into silence would be an understatement. Immediately I shone the beam of light towards the floor, causing him to smile at me as if…" The Kommandant faltered again, his eyes once again looking towards the floor.
"As if what?" Dex questioned, trying to figure out the mystery, wanting to know what could change such a person's whole view on life.
"As if I were a human being," The Kommandant finished, his face falling and his tone hoarse, "After a few seconds of silence I asked him what he had been playing, not quite able to return to the way I was supposed to act, and we started talking. I was conversing with someone who I expected to hate me, but didn't, and I felt different around him."
"How so?" Dex urged the other man to speak, his body now literally on the edge of the seat as he listened to the other man, wanting to know how that singular person had changed the man before him.
"I didn't feel like a monster." As soon as the Kommandant quit speaking a loud knock resounded, causing them both to sit bolt upright. A few seconds passed as they settled themselves into their roles, Dex taking the frightened prisoner approach while the Kommandant's whole persona grew cold and imposing. Again the person outside knocked, the knock slightly louder in volume than the first. Quickly Dex threw himself into the corner of the small room, trying his best to look as though he'd been terrorized and belittled.
"Geben Sie!"  The Kommandant spoke, standing up from his seat at the table to turn and face the newest addition to their space. The door swung open easily and two pairs of footsteps were heard entering the room before the door was once again closed. Silence shrouded the room in mystery, making Dex reluctant to look up from his feigned terrorized position.
"Guten Morgen, Kommandant. Ich sehe, Sie haben unser Paket bereit zu gehen?"  A woman's voice cut through the tension like a knife, the unmistakable smile in the tone causing Dex to nearly have a heart attack.
"Ja, ich glaube ja, Squadron Leader."  The Kommandant replied before doing an about-face and walking over to Dex, stopping only to kneel down next to him from his spot in the corner.
"Dexter, I think you might want to look up now." The Kommandant spoke, his hand finding purchase on Dex's shoulder once more, though Dex refused to tense up once more. Dex slowly unfurled himself from the 'defensive' position he took, his head rising so that he could look up, over the edge of the table and see the one face he'd been wanting to see since he'd arrived on the warship.
"Dex?" Was the only word Joe could get out of his mouth before the small mechanic practically leapt towards him, bringing the slightly taller man's head down with one hand so that he could kiss him.
They had been flying above the cloud line for far too long, in Joe's opinion, and it was starting to make him fidget. Never had the Sky Captain opted to sit in the passenger seat in his life, but for once, he let Franky do all of the flying. They had chosen the poor Sergeant May's plane, as he was part of the amphibious squadron, in case of any tries at sabotage. It was common knowledge that the Polly was Joe's plane and Westbrook knew from working on Franky's plane which one it was. Therefore, Franky decided she would be pilot and Joe would be passenger because she'd 'Flown this type of plane before'. Joe hardly saw the difference, but he understood her reasoning.
'You're emotionally compromised.' She'd said to him, something Franky usually would say to get Joe to see reason in his rash actions, although, this time, he could say the same about her. A sigh flew past Joe's lips before he even had the chance to stop it and he nearly smacked himself in the head with the pilot's seat.
'This isn't some fly-day for us, it's a rescue mission and it's for Dex, so get it together, Joe!' Joe yelled at himself in his mind before he took a deep breath and looked out the visor of the plane. Joe's brow furrowed in puzzlement as he noticed that they were now breaking through cloud coverage and were diving towards the water, but with no warship in sight.
'Of course, you ninny! You can't just go landing on a Nazi warship, declaring you're going to just pop in a rescue your lover, who happens to be a man, and also leaving heavy one Kommandant!' Joe reprimanded himself, trying to keep himself at least somewhat sharp and not shrouded in the depressive guilt that was having to actually rescue Dex.
"We're going under." Franky's voice startled him out of his thoughts and he looked up just in time to see them breach the water's surface and plunge into dark depths of the ocean. Joe hadn't even heard Franky prepare the plane for submersion he was so lost in his thoughts.
'Definitely emotionally compromised.' He scoffed at himself before returning his attention back onto the task at hand; making sure to remember all that Franky told him.
"We're going to only breach the water's surface when board the ship. There is a hull, an escape hull, that is going to be opened by one of the Kommandant's trusted men—."
"How do we know we can trust this man, let alone the Kommandant?" Joe cut Franky off, his brow scrunching in suspicion.
"The Kommandant found us, not the other way around, and he's helped at least a hundred Jewish peoples escape while also giving us the movements of the Nazi Naval Fleet," Franky paused, letting this new information seep in for Joe before continuing, "And if he says he trusts this man with his life, then he trusts this man with his life."
"Alright….what's next?" Joe said, reminding himself that he would never question Franky again if her icy tone of voice was anything to go by.
"Then we change into uniform. You look Aryan, so you will take the Kommandant's bars and be Lieutenant Schleiden.  I will be the Kommandant's recently hired personal secretary, Iiana Lindemann.  We will make our way to the interrogation room that the Kommandant has Dex in where we will then discuss the next part of the plan." Franky's no-nonsense tone was enough of a hint to Joe that they were going deep undercover and that this wasn't a time to be the Sky Captain, it was time to be Joe Sullivan who was going to be demoted to Lieutenant Schleiden.
"Okay." Was all Joe could muster as the gravity of the situation caught up with him and he slowly fell back into his seat, wishing that he were the one flying so that he could at least be doing something instead of sitting there, waiting for the images of Dex being tortured to fill his head.
"We're here Joseph, get ready to move as fast as possible. As soon as I set the plane to auto-pilot, we're going to need to climb the emergency ladder." Franky spoke, turning slightly in her seat to look at Joe. Joe nodded, feeling slightly more confident now that he was going to go do something to free his Dex, not just sit there pathetically and wait.
"Three….two….one…now!" Franky whispered loudly as they breached the surface and the visor of the plane shot back quickly to let them out. Joe jumped out first, walking quickly and as quietly as he could on the slick wing before grabbing onto the rope ladder that was lowered for them and climbing up, not even waiting for Franky. The feeling of someone else climbing below him followed soon after and a smirk formed on Joe's face before he steeled himself again and began to climb faster, wanting to reach the hull as quick as possible.
It took only a matter of minutes for them to climb all the way up, but once they were inside they were met with only an empty hallway. Slightly suspicious they both pulled out their firearms, aiming down each end of the hallway respectively. They stilled, posed and ready for battle, until the sound of very timid footsteps began to echo through the hall. Franky turned around just in time to force Joe to lower his weapon as a tall, thin man appeared around the corner wearing the garb of a Nazi soldier.
"Ach, Sie haben es geschafft."  The man spoke, his German slightly accented and his smile warm and welcoming. Franky nodded briskly, her small smile becoming slightly larger and her eyebrow rising in that way only Franky could raise it.
"Ja, wir ... und Sie haben es geschafft, als auch, wie ich sehe."  Franky spoke, her British accent disappearing under years of perfection. The man's smile became a full blown grin before he nodded and moved closer, soon standing right in front of them.
Ja, das habe ich. Nun ist es Zeit für Sie zwei zu ändern…..Please, follow me."  The man spoke, changing into English as he seemed to notice the lost look on Joe's face. Franky only smiled and nodded, literally dragging Joe down the hallway to the room the man walked into so that they could put on their outfits.
"You speak German and English with an accent." Joe stated as the man from earlier, now known to them as Andrzej, who was currently placing the bars of a Lieutenant on Joe's uniform. They were to be lined up perfectly, just like any medals the Kommandant had seen fit to let them borrow and the iron cross, which was generally bestowed upon ranking officers for their combat valor.
"Yes…I am Polish, sir." Andrzej spoke as he stepped back, his large grin having faded a long time ago and now the haunted look of a man who had seen far too much for his age replacing it. Joe felt the need to apologize, but the surprise that sparked through him seemed to freeze him in place.
"You are Polish? How have you stayed hidden?"  Franky stepped in, asking the question of the hour. Andrzej turned his head to look at her, his eyes seeming hollow while a small smile formed on his face.
"I haven't stepped foot outside the Kommandant's quarters until today." Andrzej's words weighed heavy in the air, the gravity of the fact that he had only had the Kommandant as his only confidant and friend, let alone that he even was living and was talking to him, slowly sinking in.
"He saved you?" Joe questioned, but just as he was about to get an answer, Franky interrupted Andrej.
"I'm sorry, but we must really keep to schedule. Andrej, will you take us to the interrogation room?" Franky questioned, giving Joe a pointed look before Andrej nodded to her and turned around quickly, opening the door and looking back to them to motion for them to follow.
"Komm, folge mir nach." 
"Dex?" Joe's heart fluttered at the look Dex gave him before the young mechanic shot towards him yanked him down for a kiss. Instantly Joe's arms wrapped around the shorter man, pulling him as close as he could manage while Dex's right hand pulled his head down closer and his left went to Joe's cheek. A slight cough from Franky's direction caused them to quickly separate, but only just far away enough for it to be seen as proper if anyone were to walk in.
"So, Kommandant….how the devil to we get out of here?"
Facts and Translations:
In nineteen thirty-three we all hoped that we would save ourselves by electing him to office.
Hitler was elected Chancellor, not Füher, of Germany.
By nineteen thirty-nine we were practically out of debt and we had built an army.
By now, Hitler is Füher and has made the secret pact with Russia that they will leave him be if he lets them have half of Poland.
[3 & 4]
I was a part of Kristallnaucht, I was part of the invasion of Poland, and now, at the age of thirty I am old.
Kristallnaucht is the 'Night of broken glass' or the 'Night of glass', which was the invasion of Nazi Germany and Austria by the Nazi Army. The invasion of Poland was the first time Blitzkreig or 'lightening war' was fought. Also, the Ramones sing the song 'Blitzkreig Bop' which is about the invasion of Poland, I believe. The one that goes 'Hey Ho Let's Go' in the beginning.
This is probably spelled Heil Hitler, but I don't really care to Heil him, so meh. This is the symbol of the hawk holding a swastika. I've seen it on their hats before, although I'm not sure if it's just the formal wear or not. Sometimes it was just the Iron cross, other times it was just the hawk, etc.
Shit head Nazi. That's all it means. He's very bitter, mind you, so, even if you're a neo-Nazi, you got to admit, you just learned how to spell shit head…kind of.
I feel kind of bad for associating Matthias Schweighöfer in this, but his last name is German and I am lazy.
[8 - 10]
"Guten Morgen, Kommandant. Ich sehe, Sie haben unser Paket bereit zu gehen?"
"Good morning, Commander. I see you have our package ready? "
"Ja, ich glaube ja, Squadron Leader."
"Yes, I think so, Squadron Leader."
[11 & 12]
Lieutenant Schleiden. Iiana Lindemann.
Schleiden is a name I accidentally found out was German and Iiana is after a friend of mine from Germany. Lindemann is Till Lindemann's last name and he is the lead singer of Rammstein.
[13 – 15]
"Ach, Sie haben es geschafft."
"Ah, I see you've made it."
"Ja, wir ... und Sie haben es geschafft, als auch, wie ich sehe."
"Yes, we did…..and I you've made it as well, I see."
"Ja, das habe ich. Nun ist es Zeit für Sie zwei zu ändern…..Please, follow me."
"Yes, I have. Now it's time for you two to chance….Please, follow me."
How have you stayed hidden?
The Polish were looked upon as dirty to the Germans, so they decimated them and tried to destroy an entire race of people. Thanks to people like Captain Wilm Hosenfeld and the people who tried to hide Poles like Wladyslaw Spilzman, they didn't. It's also ridiculous that they thought this, but that's my opinion.
"Komm, folge mir nach."
"Come, follow me."
End of Facts and Translations.
A/N: Some of my translations are not literal because English and German, however similar they should be [English is a Germanic language], they do not always coincide. That's because we thought we'd just make it harder for everyone to learn by making up new slang every few years/months/days. Yay Americans, we're just awesome.
Also, some of this is my opinion and some of this may not be completely correct. If you know this, please kindly correct me. I would rather not be flamed. Thank you!
IT'S FOUR IN THE MORNING.
IT'S FOUR IN THE FUNKIN' MORNING.
[Alright, no more Shaun of the Dead clips for me. My eyes are burning, it's time to sleep.]
Sorry that it took so long, but…here it is. Forgive it for any mistakes.
Please read and review kindly! [Because you can read kindly.]