The Galaxy

Stars.

Too many stars to count, twinkling in the distance and dancing with various gasses to create a rainbow of colors against a backdrop many would see as a void, but Wander and Sylvia knew better. As the duo relaxed in their orbal bubble, lollygagging towards yet another planet, they were treated to the latest in a long line of dazzling cosmic phenomena on their journey. But always, it seemed like the stars reflected in Wander's eyes the brightest, easily his favorite feature of their long voyages through the universal sea. Sylvia could tell because they'd get him to stare in silence for a few seconds before he'd continue his barrage of gab that only usually stopped when they used the downtime to take a nap.

"Wow… I've never seen stars like these before!" And truly, that was quite the statement coming from Wander. "Have you Syl?"

"Can't say I have. If you haven't, I probably haven't," the zboknak replied, tempted to add how she didn't pay much attention to things like this until she'd gotten her enthusiastic companion.

He seemed to read her mind. "You remember how we met, right?"

Sylvia rolled her eyes. Of course she did. Wander had asked her that before far too often for her taste; it was a tale he seemed to look fondly back on but one she found mortifying. From his point of view, he'd simply made a dear friend on yet another planet. Sylvia, on the other hand, had a clearer view of the entire story.


"And you're sure you didn't add an extra zero? Or ten, for that matter?"

Sylvia's client confirmed the price on the other end of the line, his voice deep and intentionally scrambled, before hanging up without so much as a "good luck," leaving her to stare at the bounty poster again.

Sylvia was far from one to complain about being paid well enough to take an extravagant year-long vacation, her career as a bounty hunter taken less out of her desire for violence (although she did occasionally enjoy punching chuckleheads faces in) and more out of necessity. After all, her other option was to return to her "home" galaxy and deal with anything from passive-aggressive stares to full-on violence, depending on where she landed. With her temper, one usually lead to the other in short order anyway.

Her galaxy hadn't always been so xenophobic, but Sylvia had been too young to remember the golden years first hand. Her elder refugees would tell her of when Zborna was inhabitable - before what was known as the Great Implosion. They said a gigantic black hole had appeared one day and had just… eaten everything. And then the black hole had vanished, like a bubble popping. Those who were lucky enough to escape with their lives crowded on surrounding planets, creating a population boom and a war over resources.

Sylvia wasn't sure she believed there had ever been a black hole. The idea of one just coming and vanishing as quickly with so much still around to fuel it seemed like a fairy tale. More likely, Sylvia theorized, that was the story told to children so they would believe the war wasn't anyone's fault. But Sylvia had seen enough darkness in the universe to know living beings were selfish. They'd break their own toys and then try to take somebody else's when they could have fixed them just as easily. More likely, Zborna was still out there called by a new, less notable title, waiting for the elders to head back and hold themselves accountable for whatever havoc they'd reeked on their home planet.

She continued to stare at the poster. Even if the client did insist on having their bounty alive, the offer seemed far too high for this guy.

This.. orange lollypop with a smile that took up half his face, and a gigantic hat dwarfing him even further.

Sylvia had a feeling her client was hiding something from her, and secrets always had the potential to get her killed.


A/N: Sylvia's ability to hotwire a spaceship made me think she may have had some sort of dubious occupation before meeting Wander.