A Cowboy Bebop trifle by MrsSpooky
The Bebop is damaged, can she be repaired?
This story takes place on the Bebop.
Cast of characters: Spike, Jet, Bob, Robert, Yao Ping.
Posted date: 16-Apr-2011
Impatiently, Jet wiped the sweat from his forehead in a vain attempt to keep it from running into his eyes as he struggled with the damaged hydraulics. There was a lot to do, so much to be repaired and he didn't know how he was going to manage it with his wounded leg. He estimated it would take at least two weeks to repair what he could get to from inside the Bebop, but the damaged hull was another story. Unless it could be towed to a ship yard, it would have to be worked on in the Martian desert, which would involve environmental suits and special equipment. There wasn't enough money to have it towed and repaired in a shipyard and he would need a lot of help getting to it outside. He hadn't had a chance to examine the damage first hand, so he didn't know if it even COULD be repaired.
Bob was concerned about the internal bulkheads holding up against the low Martian atmospheric pressure. Jet's concern was growing as he watched the internal air pressure slowly but steadily drop. Worrisome too were the occasional creaks and groans he's been hearing coming from the ship. They had a leak, but he didn't know from where. Great. Just... great. Goddammit.
He tossed his tool down in disgust, grabbed his cane and headed up toward the living area. Two days had passed since that awful day when the Bebop was shot down and Spike then Faye left.
His partner had told him the story about the tiger striped cat at dinner that night, telling him he was leaving and not coming back. He was in love with a woman called Julia, a woman, the love of his life, who he never told him about until just before they were attacked by the syndicate. Jet was happy for him, because that meant that he had found his woman and was going to go off with her. That happiness was short lived however, when Spike informed him matter of factly that she was dead.
Jet couldn't decide which broke his heart more, the fact that his partner's love had died or the casual way he told him. He seemed to be in good spirits as they shared the sandwich Bob brought them after he was brought back, but... you just can't tell with him. I'd better check on him, just to make sure he's all right.
He stopped in the galley to make some tea and grab a couple of the sandwiches from the fridge. There was only one left after this, he noted. The water boiled, Jet poured it over the bags in the waiting pot. It was tricky getting it to the living area only having one hand free, but he managed it without dropping anything.
Spike was lying on his back on the couch where he was moved to earlier in the day, eyes closed. After setting the meal on the table, he bent over his friend, debating waking him up.
"I'm not sleeping."
The voice startled him. "I have lunch. You need to eat if you're gonna heal."
There was a long silence from his partner which made Jet wonder if he had dozed off as he was talking.
With a sigh, Spike finally moved to sit up, and with Jet's assistance, turned himself around to rest his back against the back of the couch. Jet lifted the wounded leg to prop it up on the table in front.
Spike took the sandwich that was offered and half-heartedly opened it with his good arm. "Chicken salad," he commented.
"There's another roast beef if you prefer that instead."
"No, this is fine. Thanks."
Jet sat down next to him on his left, propping his own leg up on the table. He poured them each a cup of tea then unwrapped his own sandwich. Tuna. Shrugging, he proceeded to devour it, hungrier than he thought he was.
Worried about his friend, Jet spoke, "Spike..."
"Do you feel that? In your ears?"
"Like they're about to pop, but don't. We're losing pressure, aren't we?"
Sigh, "Yeah. I just checked it fifteen minutes ago and it's still well within livable limits. That won't last long if we can't find the leak."
Both men started at the sound of a hatch slamming shut.
"That sounds like the engine area," Jet said. "At least those systems are still working. If that's where the leak is, that should buy us more time. I just hope we don't have any others."
Jet tried again, "Spike..."
The communicator chime interrupted him. He pulled it out of his pocket, "Yeah."
"Jet, it's Bob. How are you guys doing?"
Jet glanced at Spike who had tilted his head back, resting it on the top of the sofa back, "So far so good. I was able to get some things fixed, but we do have a leak. Emergency hatches are starting to close. We'll have to see if that stops the leak."
"Listen, I'm coming out and bringing a doctor. I rounded up some guys who have space craft structural engineering experience. They should be able to take a look at the hull and let you know what can be done. Those sandwiches have to be running out, do you need more food?"
"Yeah, if you could, thanks! I'll pay you when you get here."
"We'll talk about it later. We should be there in about an hour if that's ok."
Jet indicated that it was fine and he'd see him then. He disconnected then turned to Spike, who appeared to be sleeping, his half-eaten sandwich sitting in his lap. Jet folded its wrappings around it and placed it on the table, then lit a cigarette. Spike grunted suddenly, his head whipping upright, eyes blinking. He recovered quickly then started fumbling at his pocket for his own cigarettes. Jet gave him one of his own and lit it for him.
Blowing smoke, Spike commented drily, "Aren't we a pair?"
Spike continued, "We're going to have to leave. Aren't we?"
"We can't stay here," Jet replied grimly. "As soon as you can travel, that is, as soon as we can get us both into monocarriers and drag our own craft outta here, we're going to Bob's parent's condo. After that... we'll have to see. It'll be alright."
Jet laid his arm across the back of the couch behind his partner and worked on his cigarette, pondering what comes next. Bounty hunting would be pretty much impossible without the Bebop. It would be years before he could save up enough money to buy a new ship, maybe a new line of work should be considered. He was surpised that the thought didn't disturb him at all.
The words kept echoing though his head and his heart.
Then why AM I still alive? Vicious had asked him that in the cathedral when Spike met him to avenge Mao's death. Julia's dead, but I'm still here.
Jet would check on him occasionally as he tried to repair the damage to the Bebop. He saw the look of compassion on his friend's face through slitted eyelids as he feigned sleep. It almost looks like he's more worried about me than the ship, Spike thought guiltily.
It's my fault. It's all my fault. If I hadn't come with him, he'd still have his ship, he wouldn't be shot, his life wouldn't be ruined. And Julia is dead.
The horror of this new nightmare was sinking in. He had had a job to do, get Vicious. He got him, thanks to the rage and grief at her death and the senseless destruction wrought by the man who used to be like his own brother. Somehow, instinct brought him back to the home and the friend he'd had for the last three and a half years. Spike didn't intend to go back to the Bebop. He left for good, not wanting to endanger his friends any more than he already had, but the same instinct that brought him to Julia's door after he was hurt in the shootout years ago brought him back to the Bebop.
He never thought he'd see her again when she didn't meet him in the graveyard. He found out years later on Callisto that she did love him and was thinking about him and was in fact being hunted by Vicious. Hatred for his former brother was threatening to overwhelm him, but with discipline, he let it flow over him then away. It was useless hating him, he's dead and it was useless to hate the dead. Spike hated wasting time on useless emotion.
Jet had helped him to the couch in the living area, which was a welcome change from the infimary. Spike decided that he and the couch were very good friends indeed.
It was occurring to him that he may be starting to miss the screeching complaints of their uninvited guest, the smell of her perfume, her constant occupation of the shower. He called Faye back to take care of Jet when he left. She even admitted that this was her home and she had no other place to go, then she ups and leaves anyway. It's a good thing I did come back, he thought. I didn't want Jet left alone and she did just that. The thought pissed him off, but he shrugged that feeling off impatiently. He also found himself missing that crazy kid who called herself Ed and even the dog. Ein spent most of his time with Ed, but there were occasions where he'd hang with Spike. He'd never had an animal want to be with him, and the mutt seemed to like him, even apparently enjoyng the ocassional petting. He had to admit that the sensation was oddly pleasurable.
But they were gone. Julia's gone. The only one left was Jet. Jet. How can he not blame him for the possible destruction of the Bebop?
Jet is going to lose his ship because of me, he thought bitterly. It is I, Spike. Destroyer of lives. Scourge of the innocent, the Beast.
He heard Jet approach and set something on the table in front of the couch, could almost feel him leaning over him.
"I'm not sleeping," he told him.
Jet wanted him to eat. He laid there debating, not feeling at all hungry. He felt a hollowness inside that couldn't be filled with food. But Jet was waiting and Spike wasn't sure he wanted to face him. He didn't want to see anyone, least of all the friend who was like a brother whose life was ruined because of him.
He accepted the chicken salad sandwich and ate without tasting it. He could feel the pressure change in his ears, which told him that the internal bulkheads wern't holding.
"Do you feel that? In your ears?"
"Like they're about to pop, but don't. We're losing pressure, aren't we?"
Yes, the pressure was dropping. The automatic slamming of the hatch back near the engine compartment confirmed that the structure was giving way and it was only a matter of time before the Bebop would no longer support human life. Jet tried to start a conversation again when Bob called. Spike knew he wanted to Talk and he wasn't up to it, and laid his head back on the top of the couch back, closing his eyes wanting to shut out this new nightmare. Bob informed Jet that he would be out with more food, a doctor and some spacecraft structural engineers to examine the Bebop. Spike didn't need Laughing Bull's insights to know that the outlook would not be good.
He dozed to fitful dreams of accusing faces and snarling accusations. The smell of cigarette smoke roused him to fumble for his own, but Jet gave him one and lit it for him. There they were, two bounty hunters, wounded legs up on the table.
"Aren't we a pair? We're going to have to leave. Aren't we?"
"We can't stay here," Jet answered. "As soon as you can travel - that is, as soon as we can get us both into monocarriers and drag our own craft outta here, we're going to Bob's parent's condo. After that... we'll have to see. It'll be alright."
There was a long silence, finally broken by Jet, "Spike... I wanted to say I'm sorry."
"YOU'RE sorry," Spike asked incredulously.
"About Julia," Jet said, his face flushing suddenly, " I'm sorry. I didn't know about her until Callisto, then when you finally told me about her... You found her again only to lose her," his voice suddenly broke, "I'm so sorry, I wish there was something I could do. If you want to talk..."
Spike COULDN'T talk over the sudden tightness in his throat. His vision blurred, a condition that was remedied by a few hard blinks.
Jet wasn't finished, and cleared his throat, "I understand if you don't want to talk about it. I just thought it might help if you did, that's all. I'm here."
Spike nodded mutely and just worked on finishing off his cigarette.
Sighing, Jet said, "I should get back to work on the hydraulics, but I think I'm gonna wait till Bob and those engineers get out here. See what they have to say."
Jet didn't feel like going back to work on the hydraulics, preferring to remain on the couch beside his friend. He had glanced over at him and saw the look of hollow pain in his eyes and decided he didn't want him to be alone. He's gonna have to tell me to leave, Jet decided.
A short while later, the faint sound of mono carriers was heard circling the Bebop, followed shortly by the sounds of thumps on the hull.
"Oh good, they're here," Jet exclaimed. He hoped the news wasn't as bad as he feared it would be. He reached over to the terminal on the table in front of them and brought up the systems display so he could check the status of the environmental systems. Atmospheric pressure was still dropping. Still livable, but will have to give it a few minutes to make sure that the closing hatchway forward of the engines would stop the leak. His own ears were starting to feel the pressure change.
The communicator chimed a call from Bob who was looking frantic.
"Jet! I'm on my way with the doctor, have the engineers gotten there yet?"
"Yeah, I can hear them outside. Just got here a few minutes ago."
"Good, but we're going to have to hurry. Weather report says there is a huge dust storm on its way there coming from the West. It'll last for days and you guys can't be stuck in that. We have several hours yet before it hits, but we can't delay. You and your partner pack up everything you want to take with you and be ready to leave. We're a half hour out."
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© 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 - stories by MrsSpooky are based on Cowboy Bebop - Spike Spiegel, Jet Black, the ship Bebop, images and cultural universe are owned by Sunrise Studios, Inc. God bless you, Hajime Yatate!!