"It's a Long Trip Alone"
Prompt: Someone points out D and G act like an old married couple
Rating: PG
Category: general
Characters: Goddard, Band, hint of D/G

Summary: Part One of a Three part fic taking place after all is said and done. Centered around Goddard and Davenport's after Christa life. Cameo's by Harlan Band and Radu 386.

The port hummed in the background creating a comforting static base for Seth Goddard's meandering thoughts. He sat in the terminal awaiting his small, personal shuttle to arrive. After all the excitement of the past 10 years, he found that even in the peaceful aftermath, his thoughts still raced from problem to problem. No respite was to be given, and though he was exhausted from the ordeals just in the past 2 weeks, flits of hopefulness entered his mind and sifted through him like many grains of sand in a sinkhole. It's over, he tried to remind himself, and we all came out on top.

Two weeks prior to him sitting in this terminal, the war had been decided. The Lumanians were defeated, largely in response to the return of his wayward crew, and their knowledge of the technology. What was left of the Lumanians, retreated into the deepest of spaces. The race that had created the Christa turned out to be even more deadly and warlike than the Spung had ever hoped to be. The toll of war was hard on all the races. So much loss of life had occurred, it seemed that not one of the races involved in the confrontation came out unscathed.

The Spung, for all their anger and sinister character, took the brunt of the initial battle and were decimated, and what was left of their race now remained in tight peace treaties with the UPP. Of course, Sirola Elmira, daughter of the former Warlord Shank, headed her people with a sharp tongue and a respect from her people even the Admiral was envious of. The UPP, interested in giving the Andromedans a measure of peace of mind, put them in charge of discussions and essentially making them spacial caretakers of the lizard-like race. Radu and Elmira were quite the pair. A friendship and love uniting two races that were formally the greatest of enemies.

Seth let a smile cross his face and turned his head and gazed out a viewing hole. White dots flecked the overwhelming blackness of space. He liked to think that he had probably been to that dot and that dot during the past ten years. But still, the voids that filled in between unsettled him now. His smile faded slowly from his lips. A sense of impending doom began to fill his chest once more. The Lumanians, though weakened, were still there, hidden in those voids... Regrouping? Plotting? Would they be back in his life time? Goddard shook his head and tried to concentrate on the dull electrical hum once more.

After all, it was over for now, and he had the rest of his life to start living. He heard a shuttle approaching his terminal and the faint buzzes and clinks that signaled the docking process behind him. Goddard allowed himself to smile again as he thought, It's time to face my punishment. He stood and turned from his seat to see the pilot of the shuttle entering the port through the docking portal. The man smiled and nodded his head. He was young and obviously military raised by his posture. Goddard smiled and nodded in return. The man gave him a quick salute.

"Captain... we will be ready to depart in just a few minutes," the man stated in a business tone. Then he swiveled on his heels and headed toward a section of the terminal where many female attendants were located chatting about their next flight and giggled over some show being aired on the UPP broadcast channel.

Goddard swung his dufflebag over a shoulder and glanced at the program. His chest swelled with pride when he noticed the guest on the talk show was Commander Harlan Band. His attention caught, Seth approached the viewing screen behind the small crowd of space airline employees. Harlan sat comfortably, in uniform, with his signature smugness permeating out of the view screen, answering various questions from the host.

"Well, that's just the thing, I am a big believer in fate nowadays," Harlan was saying, "I mean, who would have thought I would spend ten years in space, aboard an alien ship, learning the technology, growing up, and then returning home with the exact knowledge to end this terrible war?"

"And what about the rest of your crew, how are they fairing now that peace has returned to the system?"

"Well, we all have big roles now. I'm sure we are the youngest members of the UPP to be placed in the highest ranks in our fields. I mean- I may only have made Commander- but I can tell you this, I am also on a number of highly important, decision making councils..." Harlan winked at the camera. The sound of girls giggling in the audience trickled around.

As Seth prepared to turn back to his gate and leave Harlan to his hamming the host asked, "And what of the two older members of your crew? Your caretakers, TJ Davenport and Commander Seth Goddard?"

A current of fear shot through Goddard's spine as Harlan paused and looked thoughtful.

"First of all, it's Captain Seth Goddard, as of 1100 hours. The media covered his trial pretty well, so I'm sure you know that due to his efforts on the Christa he was promoted once again, however, because of his previous indiscretions, before disappearing into space with the rest of us, he was also sentenced to an early retirement. I imagine he is on his way back to Earth, right now, to begin living in a UPP purchased home on some lonely country property... To live out his days in peace... Poor guy..." Harlan winked again at the camera, this time, Goddard felt it was directed right at him.

"And TJ Davenport? Not much has been said of what has become of her..."

Harlan was thoughtful again before saying, "Miss Davenport was never really one for the spotlight. I imagine she's sitting in some dark office reading reports, writing reports, and generally, well... reading." Harlan paused and then let his signature grin cross his face. Goddard knew that look all too well and held his breath.

"If I were Miss Davenport, I would look up Goddard... what better place to relax and type and read, than in a secluded, cozy part of Earth's countryside? I don't think they've seen each other since the war ended..."

The host cut in, slyly stating, "You mean, you think those two need to spend more time together? What exactly is that relationship like?" The host grinned toothily, knowing he was getting into some real gossip.

Seth Goddard's face flushed as some of the space-line employees glanced over their shoulders at him. His teeth began to grind as he growled to himself, "Harlaaaannn..."

"Who knows... In the ten years I was around them they fought like cats and dogs... Or, more like an old married couple. It's obvious to anyone who sees them..."

The host cut in again, "What's obvious?"

Harlan paused for a third time before shrugging his shoulders, "Well, that they care for each other a great deal. And, if you spent the last ten years alongside someone, wouldn't you start to miss them? Or even... after spending so much time with someone, you grow so accustomed to their presence, it's like why bother being apart after all that? Look at the rest of us from that ship? Radu and Elmira are together, Catalina and myself," there was a brief murmur of female disapproval in the crowd about his eligibility that sent Harlan grinning again, "Bova and Rosie are rarely seen not together too... It's like those two just don't get it..."

Goddard, mortified, tore his eyes from the view screen, leaving Harlan to continue his musings. The gazes of the space-line employees became as smug as Harlan and a few eyebrows were raised in Goddard's direction. He felt blood rushing through his face all the way into the tips of his ears. Seth turned abruptly on his heal and walked briskly towards the shuttle. All the while, muttering oaths about a Commander Harlan Band.

To Be Continued

"Check Yes or No": Goddard adjusts to his retirement, tries to remain under the tabloid radar, and a final debriefing is sent by Davenport about the trip containing personal notes on the growth and recommendations of the crew. Goddard, decides to write his own debriefing in response, as Davenport failed to make any recommendations or notes on herself.