Summary: Jack fiddles with his switches and Daniel waits for his vibrator to light up
For those of you who may not be aware, in Britain we enjoy biscuits (cookies) called Jaffa cakes. These are made of sponge with the top covered in plain chocolate and a jammy orangey bit in the middle.
The following story illustrates a theory that I have long held and cherished. It is about a certain kind of formula that makes a story worth writing, and I hope, worth reading. My premise is this: there is always a hero, young and naïve, who leaves his homeland on a quest. He is accompanied by an older, wiser man and during his adventures will meet up with a street-wise hardass who will help our hero on his mission to set the world to rights by challenging injustice, cruelty and stupidity. The street-wise man always has a strong, silent sidekick who is reliable and dedicated. Of course, no story would be complete without the love interest, though in the case of this story, it's not hetero but homosexual.
As the small band makes its way through its adventure, it is clear that their combined traits of simple moral fortitude, wisdom, truth and the motivation of profit, replicate many other stories like Jesus and his dad as the older, wiser man and the streetwise follower who is out to make his thirty pieces of silver. There's the kid with a ring and a king who doesn't want to be one but is streetwise nonetheless and is accompanied by his erstwhile feisty fairy. Oh, and let's not forget a certain archaeologist with a penchant for languages, who always wants to find another way so that he can win the friendship, loyalty and love of his hardass companion...
As the sunset painted the lower atmosphere in gold, yellow, pink and blue, Daniel Skylighter frowned at his uncle. Yet again, the middle-aged man had acquired a robot that didn't work properly. That was always the problem with farmers. They didn't understand technology and like when buying a tractor, they always went for the cheapest model.
"Uncle, you've been sold a faulty drudge," Daniel whined, fed up because he knew he would have to be the one to fix it.
A very helpful protocol drudge, answering to the name of C3P-Now suggested that Daniel's uncle should swap the defective drudge for his friend, R2D-Tox.
"He's very reliable; I know his work," the drudge went on to say enthusiastically. "You won't go far wrong with this one."
Having persuaded his uncle to swap the drudge, Daniel went to his workshop and resentfully tried to clean up both machines. As he did so, R2D-Tox let out a series of bleeps and clicks and the protocol drudge did his best to interpret the message.
"He says he belongs to an Obi Bra'tac Enobi?"
Daniel was intrigued. "Maybe that crazy old man in the hills might know who he means. He's got a similar name, Old Brat Kenobi. Must be something to do with a lack of imagination, or an obvious plot clue of some kind."
Early the next morning, Daniel and C3P-Now were travelling the Dumdum Wastes looking for an errant and headstrong R2D-Tox who had taken off during the night. Daniel knew that if he didn't find the drudge, his uncle would make his life a living hell and he would probably spend the next six months cleaning the latest bag of harvested walnuts, one by one.
Daniel, being young and cocky, didn't reckon on being attacked by a load of Dumdum tramps, intent on stripping the speeder and taking what they could. As his vision adjusted, he saw a cloaked figure standing over him.
"The Dumdum Wastes are not to be travelled lightly, Daniel Skylighter. Luckily you are not injured, because it is just too early in the story for that. You should come back to my Moroccan style villa so that you can recover." As Daniel hauled himself up to his feet, he saw that C3P-Now had been attacked.
"The Dumdum tramps must have known that attacking the drudge would render him armless. They're such clever strategists," Daniel observed, collecting up the pieces of drudge and loading them into the speeder.
A little later, at the white washed villa of Obi Brat, Daniel sat on a large cushion and looked around.
"The drudge says he's the property of an Obi Brat'ac Enobi. Do you know who he's talking about?"
Rubbing his chin, the old man thought for a moment. "Yes, I know who he's talking about. Obi Brat'ac Enobi is me!"
Smiling, Daniel knew his initial assumption was correct and wondered if the old man led a double life. Perhaps instead of the hermit in the hills, he was really a planet famous magician, because he always seemed to have his hands up his sleeves.
Just then R2D-Tox clicked and bleeped and projected a small holographic figure of a woman onto Obi Brat's coffee table.
"The Alliance is in trouble," she said. "Secret Goa'uld plans have been placed inside the drudge. You must get them to my father, Jacob Crater. He'll know what to do with them. Please, Obi Brat'ac Enobi, help us."
Then the hologram message disappeared and the drudge went quiet.
"Hey! Get her back," Daniel demanded, glaring at the robot.
R2D-Tox remained motionless. As Daniel stared at the empty coffee table, Obi Brat rifled through an old trunk in the corner of the room.
"We have to help her and the Alliance, Daniel."
"What? I don't think so. I'm not a soldier and the problems with the Goa'uld are just too far away."
"That's your uncle talking," the old man replied, rubbing his chin again. "I've got something for you, something your father left with me until you were old enough to use it."
With that, Obi Brat offered Daniel a cylindrical object about seven inches long. Daniel looked at the old man with a quizzical expression on his face.
"It's a light vibrator, Daniel. Your father had one and this one is for you."
"What does it do?" the young man asked as he ran his fingers along its smooth length.
"It will light up when you find your true love. Oh, and it's a very useful weapon, in more ways than one," Obi Brat added cryptically. "You should join me and train to be a Bedi Knight."
"I can't. I'm expected to clean and polish a bag of walnuts right about now."
"No, you mustn't waste you talents on such a menial task. You have the Sauce, Daniel and you must learn to use it," the old man said kindly, patting Daniel's arm. "Come with me to the spaceport of Most Idly. We can get a transport off the planet and take the drudge to the Alliance. You are its only hope."
The speeder flew along, carrying Obi Brat and the drudges, and piloted by Daniel. He was determined to join the Rebel Alliance and fight the Goa'uld, having found the remains of his aunt and uncle, their bodies horribly charred in a way that shocked his system to the core. He'd warned them more than once that smoking would damage their health but they'd never listened and now it was too late.
The travellers reached the spaceport of Most Idly at dusk. Obi Brat headed straight for the Cantina, named after a Mexican bar frequented by men in ponchos. As they went down the entrance steps, the heat and sound assaulted Daniel's senses and he felt it to be a hostile and dangerous place. If they could find a pilot with a ship willing to take them to Alderon-ron-ron in this bar, how would they know they could trust him?
"Hey," the barman called. "We don't like their kind in here." He glared at the drudges.
"You'd better wait outside," Daniel said kindly.
"What if we're seen by the Goa'uld storm troopers? They're everywhere," stuttered C3P-Now.
"Find somewhere to hide," Skylighter suggested, shrugging his shoulders and thinking that for a robot the protocol drudge was not very bright. As the drudges left, Daniel turned his focus on the brightly lit bar.
He saw all kinds of weird and wonderful aliens crowding the place. A small band of musicians serenaded the occupants of the watering hole. Given that our story is set in Sci-Fi LaLa Land, Daniel was not at all surprised. Weird and wonderful came with the territory and was an important pointer to the plot. This was the beginning of Daniel's real education.
As Skylighter watched Obi Brat in quiet conversation with a very tall, very broad, and very muscular alien with a miniature gold tap on his forehead, a forceful hand on his shoulder took his attention.
"Hey, pretty boy. Why don't you come and see what I've got for you?"
The harsh sounding voice grated and Daniel felt fear and anger grip him as the owner of the voice shook him. At once, Obi Brat flung his cloak to one side and pulled out his light vibrator, which shone a cold green light to illuminate Daniel's antagonistic companion. With a swift downward sweep of his sabre, Obi Brat severed the alien's arm. Daniel stared at it, lying bloody and lifeless on the floor. Blinking at the alien's piercing yelps of pain, he looked at his mentor in surprise.
"Don't worry, he's armless now," the old man said with a gleam in his eye.
Daniel opened his mouth to say something and shut it again quickly. He was going to say that the day had been filled with armless characters, which should have been a reassuring situation. His thoughts were written all over his face and the old man gave him a calming smile.
"I know what you're thinking, Daniel but in this case, it wouldn't have helped except in one way. If you had said what you were thinking, it would have confirmed for everyone that you are an idealist. Everyone who heard you would realise that you strive to see the best in all you encounters and believe that there is always another way.
"You have to set yourself apart from the rest of us. You are pure and innocent and the type of hero that we all long to be. May the Sauce be with you, Daniel, you will need it to temper your naiveté."
"Um...I was just going to say that the man was about to show me his etchings, that was all," Daniel said quietly.
"Hmmm," Obi Brat considered. "You will need a lot of Sauce. Your naiveté is worse than I thought but put that to one side for now. I think we've found a pilot willing to take us away from Tatty Bean."
Confused by Obi Brat's little speech, Daniel followed in the old man's wake as he walked beside his huge alien contact, the one with the tap on his forehead.
Nervously, Daniel glanced over his shoulder at his protagonist and felt strangely elated. Why hadn't Obi Brat been around back when he was getting beat up in the schoolyard? That would have taught his fellow students to be nicer to him. But now he was on his way to becoming a hero and heroes weren't supposed to harbour grudges, pick fights, or pee up against the wall behind the school library. They were expected to harbour drudges, like heights and definitely not pee in public. Flushed with the possibility that Obi Brat was his own personal protector, Daniel smiled, straightening up and feeling more confident than he had for a long time.
Settling at a table at the back of the bar, Obi Brat did the introductions.
"This is Captain Ham Silo and his co-pilot, Trekk Chulakabbacca."
Daniel nodded his greeting, his eyes focused only on Captain Silo. Feeling his mouth go dry he sensed the attraction of the man. He was tall and lean, with brown eyes, a wide mouth and silvering hair.
"Soooo," Silo began. "Whaddya want with a ship like mine, old man?" he drawled, fingering his weapon under the table. He was nothing if not suspicious.
"Is your ship fast?" Obi Brat enquired.
"Fast? You're asking me if my ship is fast?" laughed Silo, nudging his co-pilot in the ribs. "Haven't you ever heard of the Millennium Sparrow?" he demanded incredulously.
Obi Brat shook his head. "Should I have?"
"It can do the Kessel run in less that twelve parsecs, for cryin' out loud!" the man declared smugly.
Obi Brat appeared unmoved by Silo's bragging enthusiasm for his ship's capabilities. "Can your ship take us to Alderon-ron-ron without any Goa'uld entanglements?"
Silo fell serious for a moment and said nothing. His eyes took in the strange duo sat at his table, an old man wearing a cloak four sizes too big for him and a young naïve kid with a face too pretty to be good for him. They looked harmless enough but they were asking him to put out his ship, himself and his co-pilot against possible discovery by the Goa'uld.
"It'll cost ya," he said quietly, leaning in to stare at the old man.
"How much?" Obi Brat asked, leaning in to meet him.
"Fifteen thousand Smackeroos," Silo declared, tapping the edge of the table with his fingers for emphasis.
"What?" Daniel said loudly. Checking himself, he lowered his voice. "We could buy our own ship for that!"
"Oh yeah? And who would pilot it, kid? Huh? You?" Silo asked, laughing derisorily.
"Yes," Daniel hissed back. "I'm not such a bad pilot myself. C'mon, Obi Brat, we don't need him," Skylighter declared, getting up from his seat.
The old man grasped Daniel's sleeve and pulled him down again, waggling his index finger to encourage his student to be quiet.
"We can offer ten thousand now," Obi Brat said firmly, staring deep into Silo's eyes, "and another ten when we reach our destination."
Daniel's eyes widened as he watched the old man. The quality of his voice had changed and he spoke in a deep quiet tone, never taking his eyes off the pilot.
With just a moment's hesitation, Silo nodded. "Y'got a deal. Docking bay ninety-four. One hour."
Glancing at Chulakabbacca, he rose from his seat to touch his brow with his index finger in a mock salute. "One hour and don't be late," he said. He and his co-pilot left the Cantina quickly and quietly, their activity only noticed by a small green alien with large eyes and enough piercings on his head to confuse a jeweller.
With that one meeting, Daniel's mouth watered. Ham Silo was strong, clever and a very tough cookie. Secretly, Skylighter liked him...a lot.
"Come, Daniel," the old man said, interrupting his student's thoughts. "We must get a good price for your speeder."
They hurried to Sesame Street, to the speeder lot belonging to an alien called Yodel, who was a member of the Muppet tribe. His sales assistant, Big Turd dealt with the sale.
Walking back through the winding narrow streets of Most Idly to docking bay ninety-four, Daniel groused about the small amount he had managed to get for his vehicle.
"It will be enough," Obi Brat tried to convince him.
As they hurried along, the walking jewellery store followed them, speaking quietly into a radio mic.
Meanwhile, Silo and his companion were getting the ship ready to leave. The captain was very pleased by the bargain he'd struck with the old man and couldn't contain his excitement.
"Do you realise with the kind of Smackeroos we're gonna get for this little job, we can pay off that good-for-nothing Hubba and clear our debts?"
"They are your debts, Silo," Chulakabbacca commented as he cleaned the windshield. "I cannot take responsibility for your bad decisions," he said, his baritone voice reverberating through his broad chest.
"Yeah, well," Silo muttered. "It wasn't my fault we got boarded. Those bastard Goa'uld Jaffa Cakes were more thorough than I expected and anyway, they left the Sparrow alone, so it wasn't all bad."
"Indeed," Chulakabbacca nodded, putting the windshield wipers back in place.
At that moment, Obi Brat and Daniel Skylighter entered the docking bay. Silo finished rubbing the small hood ornament with a flourish and waved his oily rag at them.
"Hey," he greeted his passengers cheerily.
They were walking Smackeroos and he loved them for it. Just a quick twenty-four hour journey to Alderon-ron-ron and he would be cash-rich for the first time in months. He just needed the Sparrow's hyperdrive to keep working long enough for his return journey.
"Why don'tcha come aboard?" He smiled at them, bowing low and standing aside to allow his paying guests access to the metal ramp that led up into the ship.
As Obi Brat and Daniel began their ascent, the docking bay was suddenly filled with the sound of weapons fire. Dropping his rag, Silo ushered his passengers up the ramp as quickly as possible, returning fire on the marauding Jaffa Cakes as he went.
As fast as he could, Silo ran to the cockpit and sat down hard in his seat. Flipping some switches to retract the ramp and get the engine fired up, he threw a wide-eyed glance at Chulakabbacca. "Punch it!" he yelled and the ship began to rise.
Flipping one more switch, two machine guns lowered from beneath the hull and proceeded to mow down the Jaffa Cakes as he manoeuvred the Millennium Sparrow out of the docking bay, banking it steeply away from the spaceport.
When the ship was well out of range from the assault of the ground troops, he sighed with relief. "Crumbs, that was close," he muttered to his co-pilot. "Our passengers must be hotter than we thought."
"Indeed," Chulakabbacca replied.
"Take the helm, Trekk, I've got some questions for those two."
Daniel sat quietly as Obi Brat gave their pilot an explanation.
"We are carrying plans that will help the Rebel Alliance defeat the Goa'uld. It is imperative that we reach Alderon-ron-ron as soon as possible and get them to Jacob Crater. He'll know what to do with them," the old man finished. "In the meantime," he said, turning to Daniel, "I have a very special pupil here who needs my guidance. He's going to be a Bedi Knight and market the Sauce throughout the galaxy."
Blinking, Daniel shifted uncomfortably. This kind of pressure always worried him but Obi Brat didn't give him any time to think about it.
"You must learn the ways of the Sauce and how to use your light vibrator. It is the means by which the Sauce will become your ally, as well as a very good accompaniment to pork chops and burgers. Learn it well and you will become a Bedi like your father."
Ham Silo did his best not to laugh out loud at the old man's words. That kind of belief system was out of the Ark. He much preferred the reliance of a good blaster at his side.
Ignoring his host's cynicism, the old man concentrated on his pupil. "Extend your light vibrator, Daniel and get a feel for its weight and balance," Obi Brat instructed.
Daniel only needed a very gentle pressure on the button set into the handle and the sword extended to nearly four feet in length, glowing blue with a hum suggesting great power and energy.
"Obi Brat? You said if it glowed..."
"No, no, Daniel, you misunderstand. It always glows when it's extended. True love will illuminate it when it is in the resting position."
"Will the Sauce show me true love?" asked Daniel, his eyes flicking to the figure of Ham Solo, who was monitoring the data flickering over the slave instrument panel in the social area of the ship.
"Your heart will show you what is true, Daniel. Your light vibrator will only confirm it," the old man explained gently. "However, you need to train your mind and body to be able to use the Sauce and now is as good a time as any," the Bedi said, patting Daniel's arm. "Swing your sabre and get accustomed to its ways."
While Daniel moved in a graceful choreography around the space, Obi Brat released a small remotely controlled metal orb to float above their heads. Before Daniel was even ready, the little orb let loose a volley of skin-stinging pulses making him start with pain.
"Ouch!" he yelled, pouting his lower lip and rubbing his arm.
"Try again, Daniel and this time, listen to the Sauce. Let it flow through you, around you and for you."
Narrowing his eyes, Daniel took off his jacket, revealing a black muscle shirt underneath. Silo's jaw dropped open as he looked at the trainee Bedi Knight. Daniel Skylighter wasn't a kid; he was a man nearly six feet tall with plenty of firm, hard curves, the kind that showed off a strong, well-proportioned body.
"Fuck," whispered the ship's captain under his breath. Trekk arched an eyebrow in response.
Daniel held his sabre in a two-handed grip. Widening his stance, he got ready to try again. Watching the little metal ball as it danced wildly in the space above him, Skylighter gritted his teeth in anticipation of another bout. Again he was caught by the lightening fast laser shots and cursed when he felt the discomfort of needle heat on his flesh.
Obi Brat chuckled as he left his seat where he had been watching his student's rocky progress. "Put this on," the old man said, throwing Daniel a helmet.
Frowning, Skylighter couldn't quite understand what his tutor was getting at. The remote floating ball had been programmed not to target his vital extremities, including his head, so why did he need the helmet?
"Once again, Daniel," Obi Brat said, snapping shut the helmet's visor.
"With the blast shield down, how can I see the laser shots?" Daniel asked confused.
"Don't trust your eyes, my boy," the old man said gently. "Go with the flow, with your feelings. Feel the Sauce, Daniel and let it guide your judgement and your intuition."
Daniel's sight was now contained behind the helmet's visor and shield. Not to be put off, he closed his eyes and concentrated, seeing the path of the laser shots a split second before the orb targeted him again. Lifting his light sabre, Daniel fended off the blasts with consummate ease, using tight but fluid movements to parré the discharges from the flying ball.
Taking off the helmet, Skylighter looked at his teacher. "I think I really felt something."
"Well done, Daniel."
Laughing out loud, Silo chimed in. "It's all hocus pocus. Being good against a remote is one thing but a fully loaded blaster? That's somethin' else."
Obi Brat chose to disregard the man and clapped Daniel on the back. "You've taken your first step into a wider universe, son," he smiled.
"We're coming up on Alderon-ron-ron," called Silo, shaking his head as he made his way forward to the cockpit.
Daniel certainly had a talent but as far as the captain was concerned, it wasn't for the Sauce thing. The talent Silo was so sure he had, was raw and less subtle than that; it was sexual. The man oozed it, his very being projected it like a beacon but somehow he seemed completely unaware of it. Smiling, Silo wondered if Skylighter might prove to be the Alliance's secret weapon. He could just charm the packaging right off those Jaffa Cakes and eat them up one at a time until they were all gone.
"Crumbs," Silo muttered as he took his seat next to Trekk.
Moments later, the Millennium Sparrow shook and shuddered under the onslaught of a slew of small stones and the other debris of an incinerated planet. Alerted that something was wrong, Daniel ran to the cockpit, Obi Brat running with him.
"What's up?" Skylighter asked breathlessly, running his eye over the instrument panel.
"I don't know," Silo cried, flipping switches frantically. "I can't figure it out."
"Aren't we supposed to be close to Alderon-ron-ron?" Daniel asked, looking between Silo and his co-pilot.
"It's gone," Obi Brat said, scrubbing his hand over his weather worn face, "with the cries of millions of voices."
Silo gave the old man a sideways glance. "Sheesh, you don't believe in holding back, do ya? I mean I know you have to introduce the concept of a sinister bad guy as a way of getting everyone on the side of the good guy but a million voices crying out? Don't think that's being a little overly dramatic, do ya?"
"Look, there it is!" Daniel grinned pointing to a large sphere in the distance. "Alderon-ron-ron was there all the time."
"No, I keep tellin' ya, it's gone. It's been blown away," Silo insisted.
"Our captain is indeed correct," the Bedi Knight concluded. "That's not a planet out there in the dark lonely depths of space. It is a space station and I believe it is the Goa'uld facility know as The Deaf Stair."
Trekk, Silo and Skylighter all turned to look at Obi Brat.
"Nah, that can't be right," Silo said eventually, staring at the cockpit panel.
"I'm afraid it is," the old man said sadly. "We must be on our guard," he instructed.
As they stared at the Deaf Stair, wishing it was a better alliteration, Silo commanded Trekk to slam the Sparrow's engine into reverse. "We're being pulled towards that...that thing! They've got a tractor beam on us," he yelled, flipping switches.
Frowning Daniel had a thought race through his mind. Typical. We've been caught by a cheap agricultural vehicle. His hope of leaving the soul-destroying work of growing, harvesting and polishing walnuts on Tatty Bean was dashed by the presence of the Deaf Stair's tractor.
"You can't win by burning out your engine," Obi Brat remarked. "Fate has drawn us here for a purpose."
Silo shot the old man a look. He didn't need a homespun philosopher at this point; he needed an army of blasters and explosives. That would get rid of the Goa'uld space station for sure.
After the Sparrow had been remotely docked in a large hangar, its crew hid themselves in secret lockers below the main deck. As Silo sat waiting quietly in the dark, he remembered the comment Obi Brat had made when he'd protested at the notion of hiding rather than fighting.
What troubles you, Captain Silo? The fool? Or the fool that follows him?
Silo knew what was bugging him. Ever since he'd met Daniel and the old man, he'd felt like he was living out a cliché.
When they'd fooled the Jaffa Cakes sent on board to investigate the apparently empty vessel, her crew managed to escape into the Control Room of the space station undetected.
"I have sensed the presence of an old friend who turned to use the Duck Stride a long time ago. I must battle with him as a distraction so that you can turn off the beam holding your ship," Obi Brat announced, drawing his light vibrator.
"Obi Brat, it's not safe," Daniel said, gripping the old man's arm.
"Don't worry, my boy. The Sauce will be with you." With that, the old man was gone.
"We should help him," Skylighter declared as he chewed his lip.
"The old man wants us to wait right here," Silo said belligerently.
"A minute ago, all you wanted to do was fight," Daniel retorted.
"Yeah, well, if the old man wants to throw his life away taking on the security force in this place, let him," Silo muttered as he slumped into a chair. Chulakabbacca nodded his agreement.
With narrowed eyes, Daniel turned his attention to the bleeps and clicks made by R2D-Tox as it searched for the beam mechanism. As he watched the readout, Skylight got excited. "She's here!"
"Who's here?" Silo asked.
"The woman in the message! She's here! We have to save her," Daniel went on excitedly.
"She who?" Silo enquired, feeling irritated that the younger man was being so vague.
"The Princess! She's being held prisoner, and we have to save her," Skylighter reiterated.
"I'm not goin' anywhere," the Sparrow's captain insisted, folding his arms across his chest for emphasis.
"We have to," Daniel urged, looking around him for an idea to aid her rescue.
Then he remembered the Sauce. Leaning over Silo, he fixed the brown eyes of the Sparrow's captain with his own. "She's rich," he said, his voice low and enticing, "and powerful. She'd pay you a large reward for her freedom."
"Really?" Silo answered, predictably sitting up and taking notice.
"She could give you more than you've ever imagined," Skylighter went on, raising his eyebrows to emphasise the possibilities.
"I dunno. I can imagine rather a lot," Silo groused. After thinking about Daniel's suggestion for all of two seconds, he looked up at his colleague. "Okay but this had better work."
After Daniel had instructed the drudges to stay in the Control Room and lock the door after they'd left, Chulakabbacca, Silo and the trainee Bedi left in search of their quarry.
The princess, meanwhile, was engaged in a head-to-head with the Goa'uld First Prime, a man dressed all in black and wearing a shiny hat. His name was Daft Ada and he had once been Obi Brat's pupil. He was flanked by the Goa'uld system lord Ra-Ra, who wore a gold costume and tartan skirt.
"Nice shirt," the Princess remarked.
"Yes, it is Goa'uld lamè," Ra-Ra returned haughtily.
Daft Ada took a breath and leaned over his captive. "You will tell us where you hid the plans for this space station, Princess and where the Rebel Alliance is hiding out."
"No," she said flatly.
Unbeknownst to her, Ra-Ra's anger flared and under the tartan skirt, his balls glowed.
"Oh but you will," Daft Ada said, his voice calm and quiet.
"No, not ever. I won't tell you anything except that your sub-light engines have developed a bit of a rattle. You should check the hyperdrive sprockets. According to my calculations, the anti-grav wave distortion field is affecting the multi-vector assault mode and that will back-up the pulse generator in the Doppler-shift transporter and gerbil conduits. Then given that your primary warp function will undergo a lock-down situation in the main deflector shields, it will lead to complete inertia."
"Huh?" Daft Ada coughed, confused.
"In other words, you're out of gas," she replied smugly.
"Feck!" the man in black choked, leaving her prison cell immediately to look for an engineer. Ra-Ra followed, his balls glowing so brightly that his skirt flashed like car headlights.
A while later, the three remaining Sparrow crewmembers opened up the door to the cell and froze, staring at the captive Princess. Their eyes roved over her appearance. She was tall and lithe, with large blue eyes and blonde hair, fixed in a strange style. She wore a very low cut dress that showed her ample breasts. Her skirt was short. The men could see a garter belt and stockings underneath it. Shaking himself from this mesmerising picture, Daniel stepped forward.
"I'm Daniel Skylighter and we've come to rescue you!"
"It's about time," the woman said. She took off her plastic barbecue apron, meaning it as a disguise in case of capture. She made a mental note not to wear it again; it hadn't worked.
Shaking the croissants from her ears, she smiled at them. "Let's go," she said excitedly. She adjusted her drab blue denim uniform, better known as BDUs. No one knew why the outfit was referred to in the plural but right now it didn't matter. Smoothing out the pastry crumbs from her hair, she smiled at them again. They just needed to escape the Jaffa Cakes closing in on them and get back to the ship.
As they were met by heavy fire, Silo wrenched off a wall panel in the hallway and they all dived for cover.
"This is a good place," the woman declared sarcastically, picking limp lettuce leaves and empty cat food cans from her clothes.
"So, it's a garbage chute. No problem. We can get out," Silo offered with more bravado than sense.
Just then the large chamber in which they found themselves began to shudder, expelling strange echoing sounds. When the walls began to move, denying them space to think, Silo looked for something to brace them and stop the inexorable journey likely to end in their being horribly crushed to death in the nasty smelling detritus from the space station.
"We're going to die!" the woman yelled.
Rolling his eyes, Silo looked at her and tried not to make a comment about her chipping a nail. Then Daniel remembered his radio and tried to contact C3P-Now.
"C3P-Now? It's the garbage slashers on the prison level," he declared. "They're going to write rubbish about us in abusive and violent relationships! There'll be absolutely no plot or betas to save us! Close them down! Stop the garbage slashers before it's too late!"
C3P-Now turned his halogen eyes to his companion drudge. "Close them all down, R2D-Tox, quickly!"
When the garbage slashers had been stopped, the team mates cleaned themselves up and thought it was time for introductions.
"I'm Ham Silo, Captain of the Millennium Sparrow but you can call me Jack."
"My name is Princess Lay Me Crater," the woman said. "My father is Jacob Crater. We must try to reach him. Do you still have the drudge with the plans inside?"
Daniel nodded enthusiastically. "Yes and I'm Daniel Skylighter, like I said before and I'm a trainee Bedi. I have the Sauce!"
They made their way back to the hangar that housed Silo's ship. Having despatched the last of the Jaffa Cakes, the captain held his Pea Notty gun in his hand as he led the team up the ramp.
Daniel stopped partway up when he heard the familiar hum of light vibrators and saw sparks flying as the weapons clashed together, flashing and glowing like a pair of neon lights. Skylighter stared as he watched Obi Brat in desperate combat with Daft Ada, their long, flowing cloaks of contrasting colours looking like a pigeon and a blackbird fighting over two glowing worms. As the feathers flew, Daniel called out, distressed that his mentor might be losing his battle.
Obi Brat knew that he would have to sacrifice his life to help Daniel and the Rebel Alliance. The old man lifted his light vibrator and allowed Daft Ada to slice through his body with their weapon of choice. His heavy oversized cloak slumped gracefully to the floor. As his adversary nudged the garment with his black-booted foot, Obi Brat's body was gone.
"Noooo!" cried Daniel as he witnessed the death of his friend and teacher.
Jack knew they had to get away, using the opportunity of Obi Brat's distraction to escape. "C'mon, Daniel, we need to go," the captain urged. "You can't help him now. I'm sorry for your loss but we've gotta go." Putting his arm around Daniel's shoulders, he pressed him to move, virtually dragging him up the ramp and into the ship.
Any celebration of their escape was tempered by the loss of Obi Brat. Daniel sat quietly in the social area of the ship, depressed and unhappy. After a while, Jack joined him, hoping to offer comfort. Placing a horse blanket around him, Jack sat down next to him. So far, the plot had not allowed any physical interaction between the two men, so Jack took advantage of the chance to touch the younger man, knowing that in time everything would be all right.
"He was a courageous man, Daniel and he did what he thought was right," Jack said gently.
"I know," replied Skylighter. "It's just that I was beginning to learn about the Sauce and now I've lost my teacher."
"What's this?" Jack asked as he pulled a small white card from Daniel's breast pocket.
"Oh that's just the contact details from the lot that bought my speeder."
Jack read out the contents of the card. Yodel the Muppet. Speeder sales and superior purveyor of the Sauce. Phone Anita for details.
"Think you'd better follow this up, Daniel," the Sparrow's captain said, sliding the card back into his companion's pocket.
Princess Lay Me entered and joined the men, demonstrating her trait for bad timing. "What do you call this bucket of bolts, Captain Silo?" she asked.
"The Millennium Sparrow," Jack replied, smarting from her description of his beloved ship.
"More like the Millennium Faulty, if you ask me," she commented. "Captain, we must get to Yadda Four as soon as possible and study the plans."
"If you make it worth my while, Lay Me," he retorted.
"Don't mind if I do," she breathed with a knowing look.
Daniel felt the lancing pain of jealousy in his heart. He'd found Silo first and he wanted him. He was beginning to believe that fate in the guise of the Sauce was dictating his future. He looked down at his light vibrator, where it was suspended in its resting position, clipped to the waistband of his trousers and noticed the faint glow at its tip....
When they got to Yadda Four, Jack, Daniel and Trekk were introduced to Jacob Crater. They waited in anticipation to unlock the secrets stored inside R2D-Tox. While they waited, Daniel wandered around the series of large hangars that housed the Rebel fleet of small one-man fighters. He considered that there might be women pilots, too and wondered if perhaps the ships should be renamed small one-person fighters instead.
There was a lot of activity as the Rebels made ready to attack the Goa'uld Deaf Stair.
Eventually he found Jack and Trekk making some last minute repairs to their ship and packing supplies into the hold.
"I see you got your reward," Daniel said sourly as he watched Jack load several large containers of Smackeroos, the preferred currency of the galaxy.
"Yep," replied the captain, his eyes fixed on the container in his hands.
"Aren't you going to stay? You can't desert them now," Daniel pleaded, indicating the young fresh-faced pilots scurrying around the hangar. "You know what they're up against."
"Not my fight, Daniel," Jack replied tight-lipped. He needed to get back to Tatty Bean and find Hubba the Butt so that he could pay off his debts.
"Fine," Daniel blurted and stalked away.
Jack hung his head. He felt as guilty as hell leaving Daniel but he had to get himself out of Hubba's murderous grip.
"Whadda you lookin' at?" Jack flared, glaring at Trekk as he picked up the last of the cash boxes.
"Silo, you should follow your heart and not your bank account," Chulakabbacca stated.
Glowering, Jack went up the ramp to start the engine.
"Daniel, I was just coming to find you," said Princess Lay Me. "We've got the plans in their entirety. Wanna come and see?"
Together they walked to the Briefing Room. Daniel glanced over his shoulder to see Jack disappearing inside the Sparrow. Saddened by the man's insistence on leaving, Daniel refocused his mind on the complex array of symbols presented in the plans.
"We're still trying to figure out what all these symbols mean," Lay Me said, staring at the display screens. "Do you have any idea what these are, Daniel?" she asked, frowning at the problematic glyphs.
"It's easy. It's a Farm Gate," Skylighter yawned. "This goes here and that goes there. You can see where this is going?" he mumbled, as his razor-sharp mind unravelled the solution and set it before her. "I think you'll find if you press these, then that, you'll open a portal that will be a short cut across the galaxy. It's so close to Christmas, it will give you an advent horizon."
"So, a warthog?" she asked her blue eyes huge with understanding. When the advent horizon opens if forms a warthog. You step through it and you end up halfway across the galaxy."
"Well, I don't know what you call it," Daniel said, puzzled at her reference to animal husbandry, "but push the button and it'll work."
He stepped back to allow Lay Me to study her conclusions. With this new technology and using the cosmic short cut, the Rebel Alliance could make a surprise attack on the Deaf Stair.
Daniel sighed. He missed Jack all ready and his shoulders slumped as he thought about the Sparrow's captain. He was tall and handsome, strong and brave. Daniel wanted to pull Jack to him and kiss him hard. Daniel idly wondered what he might look like naked, because he had a pretty good idea what he'd like to do to him naked. Skylighter knew this was probably an inappropriate thought at an inappropriate moment but he didn't care. He knew there was a subtext to the plot, so he felt he should take the opportunity to explore it.
He also knew Jack was a streetwise hardass but he'd hoped by appealing to his better nature, he and Chulakabbacca would have changed their minds and helped the Rebellion. As he put on his flight suit and helmet, Daniel still hoped that Jack Silo would return to him.
Now seated in his fighter, Daniel made ready to fly through the huge stone ring that would take him back to the Goa'uld Deaf Stair. His moment to make a difference had now come and he wished Obi Brat were still with him.
Princess Lay Me stood in the Battle Control Room and watched the instruments indicate that the warthog was open and that the fleet could depart. With only enough room for two or three ships to pass through at any one time, it would take a while for the whole of the assault force to assemble at the other end.
She had wanted to go with them but her father, Jacob Crater, had refused his permission. He said she must stay because she was a woman, and his daughter, and wearing French pastries in her hair was not the kind of fashion statement that a truly brave warrior would make. When she tried to explain that she wasn't wearing a bra and that the croissants were meant to be a distraction to any who might want to stare at her chest, he dismissed her reasoning, telling her that the subject of bazoomas was not what this war was about. It was, in fact a cock and ball story.
"Don't you mean a cock and bull story, father?" she'd asked.
Crater had just snorted and scratched himself. "Definitely not," he'd stated. He'd winked at a young fighter pilot who was passing by.
When Daniel took his place in the formation of X-wing ships waiting just off the Deaf Stair, he turned on his targeting computer. After he'd tuned it to watch the Discovery Channel for a while, he settled himself and programmed the computer to display the readout of the space station. He pinpointed the exhaust port that everyone was to target. Their orders were to release one missile each, aimed directly down the small pipe, where they would explode within the interior. The plan was for this to start a chain reaction that would destroy the station and the Goa'uld along with it.
When it came to Daniel's turn to fly over the Deaf Stair and target the exhaust port, he concentrated on the electronic representation of his route and objective.
"Daniel, trust the Sauce, your eyes can deceive you," came a disembodied voice in his cockpit.
Startled, Skylighter looked around him and wondered if his computer was suffering from interference. Tapping the small screen he resettled himself but he heard the voice again. "Daniel, use the Sauce."
It was Obi Brat's voice in his head. For a moment, he thought his grief at the old man's death had come back to haunt him, literally. "Obi Brat?" he asked, his voice timorous in the confines of the cockpit.
"It is I, Daniel. I'm speaking to you through the Sauce. Trust in it, my boy, it will help you."
"So, you're asking me to fly blind?" Skylighter asked nervously.
"You won't be blind. The Sauce will be with you," the old man's voice said.
Shaking his head, Daniel was now regretting taking that last gallon of coffee and thought his bladder might be playing tricks on him. Remembering the exercise the Bedi Knight had made him do with the blast shield down on his helmet, Daniel decided to go with it and he snapped off his targeting computer.
A warning buzzer sounded in the Control Room and Lay Me stared at the blinking lights on the screen. Daniel had switched off his computer. She speculated that he'd been so distracted by the fact that she was bra-less that it had turned his brain.
"Daniel? What are you doing?" she asked, panic in her voice.
"It's okay," came back the reply. "I have the Sauce."
Puzzled, the Princess wondered if the packed lunch she'd provided him had given him indigestion. All this talk about the Sauce was confusing her.
As Daniel made ready for his fly-by manoeuvre, he was aware of enemy ships gathering behind him, first matching his speed and then catching him. His X-wing was under fire and stuck in the deep channel on the surface of the space station. He had nowhere to go but forwards. If he tried to bail on his route and gain altitude, he would be shot down by the overhead canons. The Goa'uld ship behind him and closing rapidly was piloted by Daft Ada, who was intent on blasting Daniel out of the sky.
As he got closer, the First Prime sniffed. "The Sauce is strong in him," he growled. He called on the Duck Stride to help him run down his next victim.
"Give me all the speed you've got, R2," Daniel said through his radio. The little drudge that had been tied on the roof rack of Skylighter's ship with hairy twine, bleeped and clicked as it interfaced with the X-wing's systems, trying to wring the last bit of forward momentum from the engines.
Daft Ada gripped his stick-gun, ready to fire Daniel to kingdom come, when his ship took a glancing blow from something just above him. Losing power, the First Prime had no choice but to break off his pursuit. Daniel caught a glimpse of the enemy fighter somersaulting away in his rear-view mirror just before he heard Jack's voice over his radio.
"Okay, buddy, do your stuff, and let's get outta here!"
"Jack! You came back!"
"I couldn't leave and let you have all the glory, now could I?" he laughed. "Besides, I make it a rule never to leave anyone behind."
Now that Jack was with him, Daniel girded his loins. He steeled his concentration and called on the Sauce to guide his one and only chance to hit his target. His cockpit went silent as the Sauce did its work. Almost as though everything had slowed, Daniel flipped the switch to launch his missile. The weapon flew towards its target, suddenly moving from a horizontal trajectory to a vertical one, something that engineers and scientists would puzzle over for years to come. The missile disappeared as it hit its target, going straight down the exhaust port. It exploded on impact and caused the space station to ignite and explode, thus saving the day.
Daniel climbed out of his X-wing fighter to find himself surrounded by the adulation of the Rebel Alliance. People pressed close to him to congratulate him on his remarkable success in blowing up the Deaf Stair. Princess Lay Me flung her arms around his neck and kissed him to the cheers and applause of all those who witnessed it. Daniel felt embarrassed by the attention, especially by that of Lay Me. Her kiss felt weird, more like kissing a sister than a potential lover.
When Jack had landed the Sparrow, he and Trekk made their way through the crowd surrounding Daniel. Jack saw how much people liked him and how they were excited by his abilities. He hesitated for a moment, wondering if Daniel would be pleased to see him or not. After all, the last time they'd seen each other, Jack had virtually sent him away with a flea in his ear. Chulakabbacca nudged his captain in Daniel's direction and stumbling, Jack complied.
"Jack!" Daniel said. He greeted the Sparrow's captain with a big hug. "Boy, am I glad to see you and even gladder that you didn't really leave."
"Yeah, well," muttered Jack as a grin broadened his lips.
Their embrace was prematurely interrupted when Jacob Crater appeared, especially to congratulate Daniel.
"The Rebel Alliance owes you a great debt of gratitude, Daniel Skylighter. You have proven to be a great asset to our cause."
"Thanks must go to your daughter, sir. She devised the system that enabled the fleet to take the Deaf Stair by surprise," Daniel replied.
"Yes, I know. She's good with her hands and I'm sure her bra came in useful as an important item in her tool kit," the older man stated.
Knitting his brows into a pair of socks, Daniel was confused all over again. How could some female apparel power the Farm Gate?
Jack's cough reminded Skylighter of the pilot's contribution to his success. "General Crater, you shouldn't forget what Jack did to help me. Without him, I would have perished," Daniel smiled.
"Yeah, pulled his balls outta the fire," Jack said grinning even more.
Swallowing, Daniel felt himself flush at the words Jack used and his arousal climbed. At last the plot had arrived at a point where there was a chance of getting to know Jack better and he couldn't wait.
Jack and Daniel were expected to attend a formal dinner as guests of honour that evening. Daniel was excited and nervous. He could never have imagined being at this point in his life even a few days ago but there he was, wearing the uniform of an X-wing pilot and a gold medal on his chest.
Princess Lay Me sat between him and Jack, looking radiant and happy. C3P-Now and R2D-Tox had both gone through the car wash and were resplendent with clean and shiny surfaces.
After the eating was over, Daniel had been introduced to the various commanders of the Rebellion forces. He wanted to get away and speak to Jack but his good manners prevented this and so he was forced to be polite and patient. When he was at last free, he looked around the large room, hoping to see Jack but the other man wasn't there.
Daniel couldn't think where he might be and panicked thinking that he might be on the Millennium Sparrow getting ready to leave. Running as fast as he could, he reached the hangars, his eyes flicking across the larger ships. There in the corner, furthest away from where he stood, was the Sparrow. Sighing with relief, at least he knew that Jack was still on the planet.
"Hey," Silo said quietly. Daniel jumped with surprise. He'd crept up behind the Bedi Knight and whispered in his ear.
"Jack," Daniel breathed as his eyes closed involuntarily. His skin prickled and his body vibrated to be this close to the Sparrow's pilot.
"Were you lookin' for me?"
"Um...yes, I was. I was afraid that you might have left without saying goodbye."
"Why would I leave?" Jack said toying with his oily rag, his face flushing like a row of toilet cisterns.
"I...I wondered if we might...talk for a while."
"Anything you want, Daniel," Jack smiled. "Wanna go aboard?"
Nodding, Daniel made for the ramp of the ship and then stopped. "What about Trekk?"
"You wanna talk with him too?"
"No! I mean no, I just want to talk with you."
"Sure thing, Daniel," Jack said as he walked beside the Bedi.
"Wanna see my switch flipping techniques?" Jack asked quietly.
Smiling Daniel waited for Jack to climb into the cockpit. They sat side-by-side on the bench seat, looking out the windshield to the dark hangar beyond. The flight deck was also in darkness, with just the Sparrow's engine light on standby.
"Why's it doing that?" Silo asked, pointing to Daniel's brilliantly glimmering light vibrator.
"Obi Brat told me that it would glow when I found my true love," Daniel explained.
"Aha," Jack said. He idly flipped a switch. The backrest of the bench seat slowly lowered flat and Daniel found himself lying on his back with Jack on top of him. "Wanna play?" Jack rasped as he drew his face close to Daniel's.
Parting his lips, Daniel invited Jack in and soon they were kissing like their lives depended on it, first Jack penetrating the Bedi's mouth and then Daniel pushing his tongue into Jack's.
Silo unfastened Daniel's dress jacket and opened it up to expose his smooth broad chest. Rubbing Daniel's nipples one after the other, the younger man gasped as Jack's rough touch made the small nubs hard and erect. His hot breath teased at Daniel's nipples, rendering them hypersensitive.
Daniel pushed at Jack's coat, pulling it off his shoulders and down his arms as quickly as he could. Running his fingertips through the light covering of chest hairs, Daniel smiled at the way the pilot groaned in response. Like teenagers trying to divest their clothes in the confines of a small speeder, the men struggled to get out of their garments as soon as possible. They wanted to be naked, skin on skin and hard muscles touching and moving over one another.
The heated flesh of their erections pushed and prodded against their abdomens as their passion climbed. They fondled each other, thrusting their hips in unison as their need ignited. Still on top, Jack ran his hands slowly between Daniel's thighs to cup his balls. His eyes half lidded as the pleasure stung his body with tendrils of heated desire. Shifting his legs, Daniel lifted them over Jack's hips in an obvious invitation and Silo accepted.
Reaching into the glove compartment, Jack pulled out a small tube and flipped the cap, squeezing a liberal trail of clear gel over his fingers. The man in his arms was special and he knew it. He just hoped that Daniel felt the same about him. He needed to know that Daniel would still respect him in the morning. Glancing over at the tangle of clothes he saw his partner's light vibrator shining like a sentinel. Perhaps Daniel did feel the same after all.
Feeling behind Daniel's balls, Jack located the tight ring of puckered skin that was his goal. Gently sliding in a finger, he could hear and feel Daniel's excitement grow. When he looked into his eyes, Jack could see that Daniel's desire had darkened and widened his pupils. Groaning, Jack opened Daniel's ass with a second finger added to the first, working him in preparation.
Daniel loved what Jack was doing and made his encouragement sound loud in the cockpit. He'd known all along that he was attracted to Jack and his light vibrator was just confirming his initial feelings. Obi Brat had been right. The Sauce wouldn't dictate his emotions; only reflect them.
"Do you want more?" Jack gasped as he continued to finger fuck his lover. "Say you want more."
"I want more, Jack. I want everything you have to give me," Daniel said as he thrust his hips onto Jack's fingers.
Planting one hand below Daniel's arm, Jack kept his fingers inside Daniel and cupped his palm, resting his cock in it. Without withdrawing his fingers Jack pushed himself into Daniel, stretching him and hearing him yell with pleasure.
The feeling of being surrounded by Daniel's tight heated flesh was almost more than Jack could bear but he remained unmoving to allow his lover to adjust to his size. He could hear Daniel's rasping breath fill the cockpit and when he felt fingertips pressing into his buttocks encouraging him to thrust Jack couldn't stay still any longer.
With a gentle sliding action, Jack began to shaft his partner, caressing him with care and love. As the men connected, their pleasure deep and enduring, they began to lift off the seat, floating in mid air. Daniel's powers were gently surrounding the two of them, holding them together as they made love. Jack was aware of the strange feeling of levitation but instead of panicking over his newfound situation, he revelled in the extra sensations his lover could create for him. Oddly, even though they were floating, Jack still had the ability to thrust deep into his lover, with Daniel giving him the resistance he needed to move.
Daniel too was amazed at how the power of the Sauce could enhance the sensuousness of their union. He knew that in time, as his potency increased, their sex life was likely to spiral to another place.
With his lust aroused, Daniel rocked his hips in time with Jack's thrusts, the two of them moving in unison. As Jack's blood coursed through his veins, his cock moved faster and faster, ploughing Daniel's sweet ass. His lungs gasped for breath and the muscles in his legs and back flexed and clenched to produce a film of perspiration on his skin.
Daniel couldn't get enough of Jack. He raised his legs to rest on the pilot's shoulders, rolling his hips towards him, enabling his lover to vary the angle of his penetration. The head of Jack's cock rubbed incessantly against Daniel's prostate, making him yell even louder. The little fluffy dice hanging from the rear view mirror danced and quivered wildly in response to the rhythmic vibrations in the cockpit as the men fucked.
Jack's race to completion was close and he choked out a warning to his lover. "Close, Danny, so damned close."
"Make it happen, Jack," commanded Daniel, squeezing his ass muscles to caress Jack further.
Jack couldn't hold on much longer. He could feel his balls tighten and knew he was on the edge, about to hurtle over it. Daniel reached for his cock and pumped, stroking himself to match his lover's pace. He kept his eyes focused on Jack's, holding his gaze as his mouth slackened. The sight made Jack come hard, pulsing and twitching inside Daniel's ass, his partner erupting through his fist.
By now the cockpit of the Millennium Sparrow was humid with the scent of sex. The windshield was steamed up from their efforts. Breathless and sated, Jack gently rolled off Daniel and lay beside him as they both panted down from their high.
Daniel turned to his lover and held him tight, kissing him senseless.
"Whoa, what's that for?" Jack asked, grinning and knowing perfectly well.
"Because I love you," Daniel replied emphatically.
"That's one heck of a confession, Daniel," Jack said, drawing back to study the younger man's expression.
"I'm just being honest, Jack. Our destinies are connected. Intertwined. And I thought I would save time by saying it now."
"What happens next?"
"I don't know, but whatever it is, we'll be doing it together," Daniel sighed happily.
"You sound pretty sure of yourself."
"Aren't you?" Daniel asked, suddenly nervous of Jack's answer.
Jack's eyes mapped Daniel's face as he considered Daniel's question. "I'm sure we're meant to be together. I just don't know how. You're famous now and with the Sauce, you're destined for greater things than just flying around the galaxy with me in this old crate."
"You could join the Rebellion, Jack. We could make a difference, you know."
"I'll think about it," Jack smiled. He rubbed a clear spot on the windshield to look across the hangar to the large stone ring. What else could a man need? He would have Daniel, his Pea Notty and all the adventures he could deal with. "Okay, I've thought about it and the answer's yes."
"It didn't take you long to decide," Daniel laughed gently.
"Why should it? Got the guy, got the vessel and got the weapon!"
In a galaxy far, far away, two men fought to free worlds from the choking grip of the Goa'uld. They shared the fight with others who also felt strongly enough to want to make a difference. Daniel and Jack were known as The Force With the Sauce and the Ass With the Sass.