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Juniper clung onto the back of Ursa's helmet as she moved and crouched around. Her claws held her in place, and she breathed quietly the false oxygen from the mask. She wanted to help but knew she didn't have her own helmet to help her breathe in case of some emergency. She looked out of the mask at the pirates that were coming their way, and she could suddenly hear Jean speak through the com. He made his plan to help destroy some of the pirates clear, and told them to stay back while he did so.

Shortly after announcing his plan, Juniper watched as a blast was fired inside of the ship, almost quite literally disintegrating the pirates in its way. After that explosion, another explosion happened from a grenade that had been triggered just prior. Purple flames engulfed the area, killing off a few more of their foes. Though only to be immediately followed by three more blasts. Though this time, the pressure released from the area. Juniper's eyes widened, staring as bodies were lifted and sucked toward the holes, blocking them for the moment. But as she squinted, she could see the ice creeping steadily along the walls and people around.

"We need to keep going! It's not safe to stay here or we'll all freeze..." Juniper thought, and tried to speak her mind, though the sound came out as frantic squeaking next to Ursa's ear. In that moment also, she realized that Emmett had also spoken to her before the attack. He had mentioned he thought this mission was too dangerous for her, and she narrowed her eyes stubbornly.

Jean's voice broke through her stubborn glare, and he asked Ursa how many he had gotten rid of for them. As Juniper waited for Ursa's response, she looked out the mask again frantically. She was no use being in here. Not like she would be much use out there either, but maybe another set of hands would be better than a set of tiny paws. In that moment Juniper took a deep breath and crawled down out of Ursa's helmet mask, holding her breath while she jumped to the floor. The air was ice cold, and she shivered hard in response, though her fur would normally have kept her fairly warm. She immediately began to shift into her human form, and all the while holding the now stale air in her lungs. She would die for sure if she didn't find a mask of some kind with oxygen to help her breathe. Panic began to show on her face as she looked around at the dead bodies for something that might be of use, or even some sort of equipment on the wall she could use.

Finally her eyes came to rest on one of the poor pirate creatures who seemed to need to use a helmet to breathe, and Juniper scrambled over to her. The floor was beginning to get slippery due to the ice and her fingers were cold as ice crept up around the tips. With shaky hands, she tugged a few times on the helmet until it came off. There was blood splattered on the outside eyepiece and she wanted to frown but had no time to even care. She stuck the helmet on over her head and hoped and prayed it would work. She felt around on the outside for something that would tighten and secure the helmet, and activate the oxygen. When she did she clicked it and without even waiting to know for sure if it would work, she opened her mouth and dragged in a huge lungful of air.

Immediately Juniper was relieved and she took a few more deep breaths, then paced her breathing. She wasn't sure how this helmet fully worked. It was possible that it filtered the air, or lack of inside the helmet and rotated it through, since she couldn't see anything that held oxygen. She had no idea nonetheless, and realized she didn't have her own com. It would be difficult to communicate without one, but she looked over at Mac, who tossed her a little black earpiece. She quickly put it on and replaced the helmet, and gave a thumbs up to thank him.

"Anyway, as I was trying to say earlier Ursa... We have to keep going or we're all going to freeze!"

There were still some pirates waiting there, but at this point, most if not all of them looked discouraged.
Ophelia's gaze has rested on Morthos once Roxas excused himself, and since Jax already knew, he was the only one she was watching for a reaction. For some reason, Ophelia had pictured their responses to be different, and she listened as Morthos spoke after seeming to choke.

"Um, congratulations?" he started off by saying. Ophelia's eyebrows furrowed slightly, her face shifting from feeling disappointed, to angry at his next sentence. "Ophelia could you go grab Roxas so we can go over battle plans? Also so I don't have to do introductions twice?"

"Whatever you say, your majesty..." Ophelia muttered and stood up abruptly. The chair she sat in got thrown back slightly with her strength and she disappeared from the room in a blur of movement. The moment she was outside the door, she growled and searched around for Roxas. His reaction made her angry too, but it was more understandable. She found him easily simply by his scent. He was only in the next room, but either way. She sighed slightly and approached him, her movements slow.


Roxas made his way through the hall and found an open window. He knew it was rude to leave like that but, he really didn’t want the others eyes on him. It was a shock to him that this happened. Not that he had never thought of having a kid with Ophelia but, he never thought it would be this soon. Would he be a good enough father? Could he even be one? There was so much going through his head at the moment. Maybe the others had a better reaction then he did. Thinking about it he was starting to feel guilty for what he did. Right as he was about to walk back into the other room though, Ophelia was standing right next to him. Almost gave him a bit of scare. “Ophelia..” He paused. “I’m sorry.” Was all he was able to get out at the moment, his head hanging low.

Ophelia shifted slightly so there was a little bit of space between them. His scent was overwhelming and she wanted to speak to him quickly before they needed to go back. “Morthos asked me to come get you… to go over battle plans…” She said, fighting the urge to roll her eyes. Instead she bit the inside of her cheek.

“What are you sorry for?”


Roxas looked up at Ophelia. He could tell she was annoyed mostly by the way she said Morthos’ name. “I’m sorry how I reacted. Why didn’t you say anything before? Also what the hell did Morthos do now? You seem like you want to punch him.” He moved a little closer to her and the two of them sat on the windowsill. He looked now at ground again but linked his hand with Ophelia’s.

I just… Thought he would be more interested… or something. I don’t know. It’s not important, obviously. We can speak more in depth about this later if you like. I’m telling you right now though, that I’m keeping this baby… But that doesn’t mean you need to stay if you aren’t okay with my choice. And I’m sorry that this happened now… I know we are just starting to move up as a team.” She said, slouching.

Roxas listened to Ophelia and pulled her into a hug as she finished. “I’m not going anywhere.” He held her tightly. “We started this together and we will go all the way together. Besides, fuck whatever Morthos thinks or says, it’s important to me, you and obviously Jax.” He lifted her head up and kissed her gently. “You don’t have to be sorry about anything, but you better believe that I’ll be sticking close to you like glue.” He smiled down at her hoping to make her feel better.

“Before you try and stop me, I’m still fighting. None of you will convince me not to… Just so you know.” She said this with full confidence, looking him square in the eyes.

“Oh trust me I have no intention on stopping you. I have no wish to end up like when we first met.” This made him laugh a little thinking of that night. He definitely would have lost but, never would admit it. “I do want to talk about it more when we have the chance. I have a few concerns that are on my mind.”

“What kind of concerns?” she asked curiously.

“Everything wrong with me. I don’t know if it’ll affect the baby or you.” His voice lowers a bit trying not to think about it to much.

“Well. We will speak more about it later. Maybe I’ll go talk to the council and see what they have to say… or actually. I’ll call my mom when I get the chance. She’ll know more than I do. But we need to go back… Before someone throws a fit. And, I need to feed soon… My throat is killing me.” The entire time they had been travelling and been here, Ophelia’s eyes had been growing darker by the minute. Now they were almost pure black, with just the slightest little thin ring of blue left, almost not even visible. Her lips were parted a little to show her fangs out of instinct.

“C’mon.”


Roxas had been with Ophelia long enough to know when she really needed to feed. She really couldn’t wait any longer and this “Meeting” could take longer than anticipated. “The princess can wait you need to feed now.” He pulled her into his arms then yanked down his collar for her to get to his neck.

“I can wait Roxas…” Ophelia said, the volume of her voice rising to create an echo through the room. She was agitated already, and knew he was right, but she was being stubborn and trying to ensure she was showing she cared about what was going on with Morthos’ Mom. She reached up quickly and fixed his collar, then took his hand and lead him back to the banquet room. She sat back down in silence, deciding not to take part in the conversation and to simply listen.

“Fine but when this is done we’re going back to the room and you’re drinking as much as you need.” He said as they were walking back to the room. As they walked in, there were a few new people at the table. He shook their hands then sat down. “Sorry had a little life changing information come up and had to discuss it with my girlfriend here.” Roxas smiled apologetically at the others in the room and listened to what was being said. He did care about Morthos’ mom missing but, it was a little hard to concentrate on it when he was going to be a father. It was scary and exciting at the same time. While the others were talking, Roxas looked at Ophelia for a bit and took her hand in his under the table. He tried to hide a smile.

When Morthos asked his question, Roxas snapped back into reality. “Well since we really don’t have much to go on I think that we should try and make it to the cave in the mountain. I know you said that you’ve called for a retreat, but I might be able to get past the horde. It’ll cost me, but I think I can get past them.” He looked over at Jax for a second making eye contact with her wondering if she knew what he was talking about. Regardless he would explain it later when it was just the four of them. As much as he didn’t want to use Ifrits help that often, he might be able to use him slightly to get past the demons. It was a risk because if it didn’t work then he’d actually have to use his powers and he really didn’t want to do that. There was going to be a really long internal conversation later that night.
From inside the little pocket, Juniper listened and poked her head out to watch the commotion going on around her and Ursa. Her little eyes squinted just slightly and she listened as Ursa called out the plans to everyone. She then suggested one option and another to Juniper, and she listened curiously at the two. She looked up at Ursa again, tilting her head to the side and then clung on with her little claws a bit tighter to her shirt. She nodded to signify she would stay with Ursa, figuring she could be of some use on board the pirates vessel.

Suddenly the shields were blown apart and the back end of the pirate ship was available. Takashi moved the Ranger in that direction, and Juniper began to prepare herself for whatever she might need to do.
Ursa moved to sit in the main captain’s chair, pulling out her ‘Tony Treo’s Pizza Hutz’ baseball hat, which she put on backwards to keep her hair out of her face. She listened to Emmett threaten Jean and gave a small smile. Honestly she was very shocked with Emmett’s loyalty with the situation. She wouldn’t expect the assassin to be so accommodating with her requests, but then again she wasn’t overly surprised. Anyone who looked at Draykon would know he had his demons, even if he hid them behind cheesy charm and threats, but not many probably knew that besides the killing he was actually a pretty nice fellow. When he looked her way she nodded giving him a grateful smirk before turning to Jean, who got her heart beating like a rabid raccoon, when he inquired where the nearest gunner seat was. She pointed to Damian who was setting the ranger’s weapon’s to on, “You can take a seat next to Damian. He can fill you in on what we have, and if you need it assistance with controls.”

She turned her body to look at Dill, “Dill, I want you to hack into their main com’s. I want to talk to this pirate fucker before I...SHIT!”

Suddenly the ship veered to the right, Takashi screaming, “HOLD ON!”

Ursa slammed into the side of her seat but held tight as the ship veered out of the way of some oncoming plasma blasts. They just managed to dodge the onslaught but she and most of the ship knew that another was going to be coming quickly. Ursa swore, “Anna, increase our shields. Takashi stay on course, and increase speed when we get within 100 clicks of that ship. Mac grab the weapons and prepare for ‘Plan Chicken’! YOU GOT IT!”

Mac looked over at Juniper, “We are doing ‘Plan Chicken’? THAT’S WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO DO!”

Ursa nodded confidently, “‘Plan Chicken’..works every time Mac. Now go get the weapons!”

Mac walked out shaking his head, “‘Plan Chicken.’ Who comes up with this shit. Its embarrassing!”

Fitting himself into a nearby gunners station Jean ran his hands over the controls, guessing at what the different knobs and buttons did. Frowning the Sheriff turned to Damian, jerking his head towards the captain and first mate. “Ay, partner. Mind letting th’ new rider in on wotever the blazing hell Plan Chicken is?”

Ursa turned to the cowboy with a smug smile, “You will get the gist soon enough, Sparky!” She was actually quite proud of the name. It was awesome as hell, and they would all see that soon enough so she turned to look at Dill, “The Com’s. Are we up now?”

Dill bit his bottom lip, his hands working on a touch screen keypad, “Just one minute...and yep. There we are. You are live captain.”

Ursa suddenly looked up at the main screen and saw Naefario and a few members of his crew through the camera, “OH DEAR GOD! HE LOOKS LIKE A GIANT MECHANICAL BUG.”

Dill’s eye’s widened, “He can hear you!”

Ursa blinked then turned to the screen, “Oh...I mean a very handsome mechanical bug. I bet you get all the bug ladies….Anyway let’s cut to the chase. I am a pacifist at heart here, Mr. Crabs, so before we continue on this violent charade I was wondering if perhaps we can solve this on a more diplomatic level? I may not look the part but I have a few sheckles in the bank, and I am more then willing to work out a deal?”

She shrunk against the captain’s seat looking nervous and awkward, like a kid trying to take on a monster, but she knew ‘Plan Chicken’ would work she just needed to depend on what she knew best, her lies.

To his immense credit Nafeario kept his cool as a massive blown up holographic image of Ursa and the bridge of the Ranger suddenly materialized out of nowhere blaring everything at triple max volume for the entire crew, and several nearby star systems to hear. Clapping his cybernetic hands to his very real and ringing ear holes Nafaerio stood from his throne delivering a hefty kick to his cyberspace engineer. “WHY IS THIS FUCKING HOLOGRAM SO DAMN BIG AND LOUD YOU SCALY LUGRUFFER! AND WHY IS IT EVEN HERE!” He screeched leveling blows upon the hapless creature who struggled to regain control of his hacked workspace.

“They’ve infiltrated th’ ship’s mainframe boss! Th’ hackers’ good but if ye stop breakin’ me poor back Cap’n I’ll ‘ave control again soon.”

Giving his minion a few more whacks for good measure Nafaerio turned to the now reduced image, in both size and decibel. Now that he had a good view of Ursa, and wasn’t being deffend the kapitan’s furious snarl melted away and was replaced by a lustful grin. “Harr, I knew ye were some fiery fishes, but I did’n expect ye to be so burnin’.... Eh…?”

“Hot Cap’n.”

“Shut ye mouth Gismuch, but aye. Hot. Heheheh, say, I’m a pacifish at heart too ye know. So why don’ we jus’ reach an accord like ye want. What’da ya say? Come aboard an’ we’ll ‘ave a nice long talk, jus’ th’ two o’ us.”

Juniper was being thrown around like a rag doll by a 2 year old as the ship was being blasted at. She grunted each time she knocked into something and frowned. She heard Ursa command “Plan Chicken” and Juniper’s eyes widened, unsure what she meant by that.

“What is plan chicken!?” she said, trying to be heard over the chaos of voices. She noticed Mac was staring at her and she began to worry. Suddenly though, the big screen in front of them lit up and indeed, just like Ursa shouted, the ‘person’ on the other side looked like a giant mechanical bug… thing. But as Ursa spoke to try and buy her way out of the situation, the bug dude began… hitting? On Ursa.

Juniper stared at the captain and then at Ursa with a blank expression as first, and then had to bite down on her lip to hold back a bought of unexpected laughter. For the record, Juniper didn’t know what kind of beings Ursa was into, but she figured it was less bug, and more…. Cowboy. She smirked slightly, hiding it with a cough into her hand. So far, despite the ship having been blasted at, things didn’t seem too alarming. But, that could change in an instant.

Emmett grew excited as he loved the plan chicken, he also knew it was one of Ursa’s favourite plans when they were in a tight spot. As Emmett started towards where he normally hides in case of emergencies, Emmett heard Ursa talking to someone but Emmett wasn’t sure who. He looked back in the room making sure to keep out of sight just in case, and to his surprise he saw the pirate Nafaerio-Vad. Emmett had heard from his fellow assassins about a Mechanical Humanoid flying around stealing and killing from ships flying through this part of the galaxy. Emmett tried getting Ursa’s attention while maintaining his hidden position. Emmett had heard that Nafaerio was not one to be taken lightly, and not one to let people go unless it was in his best interest. Only way for them to get out alive is to hopefully be able to jump to hyperspace or take them head on.

Ursa crossed her legs, trying to get comfortable in the hot seat. The pirate captain was uglier than sin, and the fact he wanted to go to bootytown was really not what she was expecting. She gave an awkward smile, trying not to puke. She noticed Juniper trying not to laugh and she blushed three shades of pink. She then noted Emmett trying to get her attention. She nodded at him to hold on before she stood up and placed her hands on her bare hips. She kept her eyes on the screen but motioned towards Dill, snapping once before she pointed to Anna. They both nodded and Ursa put up an awkward smirk, “Well Mr Krabs, ain’t that an offer. I suppose I should be flattered that such a handsome bug man is interested in getting to know each other better, but I wasn’t offering ‘the goods’. No, I was offering kredits. MOOLAH! You know...the good ol green. I guess I didn’t explain myself fully, so let me reiterate. You let my ship go and I will send you 3 million kredits for payment. Hell I will even throw you some fuel and a favor for the future? Maybe even a few kredits for the crew. Hello fella’s! Any of you want to try some new employment? I am always looking for good workers. Now that is a good deal, a fair deal some would say. Seeming as you are in a disadvantage, you should be fucking grateful I am offering it.”

She looked over to Dill, before turning to Anna, tapping her legs. Anna held up her fist then brought up her hands to form a seven. The ship was still moving headfirst towards the pirate ship, the speed increasing to a high level, a worrisome level. Ursa remained calm, but also exhausted. She rubbed her eyes, not mentally prepared for what was about to happen, “So what do you say, we got a deal?”

Mac came in with a large bag and handed out the usual weapons to the crew before walking over to Juniper and Emmett, “Prepare yourself. Once he makes his decision this is going to go fast. Please god just let him take the fricking deal.”

Ursa stomped her foot and Takashi increased the speed, and she smiled up at the screen, moving back to her seat as she lifted her legs up and over the armrest, “Times running out for you to choose what route you wanna take. Our ship is moving at top speed towards your vessel, and we ain’t slowing down anytime soon. So best be quick with that response, Mr Krabs. Time is running out.”

Chortling Nafaerio pretended to ponder this alternative deal over, all the while watching the Ranger hurtle ever closer. He was really starting to like this girl, her brash confidence and defiant nature was almost as attractive as her looks, and whether she was willing or not he was determined to have her. Waving a mechanical hand he brushed off her offers of money and gifts, and even her subliminal threats. “Hark m’girl, I don’ go into nothin’ at a disadvantage no ways, no how. And three million kredits? Fuck off, that’s pocket change to me. Now let's make this nice an’ easy, and everyone will get along jus’ fine. Turn me ship you’ve got there over to my custody, surrender yer crew to my protection, and discontinue your forward momentum before you scratch me pretty fish and end up smashed like a soda can against me windshield.” Turning in his chair Nafaerio signaled to his crew operating the cruiser’s controls. “Extra power to the forward impact shields, sublight engines full speed ahead, and tractor beams away.” Twisting his bulbous head towards Ursa Cooper the dread pirate grinned, in all his malicious glory. “But please don’t, I’d prefer to ‘ave a little fun. All hands brace for impact!”

“Ursa…” Jean muttered, his knuckles growing white around the joysticks the operated the turret. “What are we doing?” He didn’t like the sound of ‘plan chicken’, nor the direction it seemed to be going. The pirate cruiser was growing very large, very fast to everyone on the bridge and seemed to have no intention of halting or changing course in the slightest. Standing from his battlestation Jean began to inch up behind Anna, his dark eyes flashing from Nafaerio’s vicious grin, to Ursa’s concerned expression, and lastly to the controls that Anna clutched.

When the pirate didn’t bother to accept the offer, Juniper watched as Jean grew more concerned. Her eyes moved to rest on the forward windshield and she shook her head, a pit growing in her stomach. She considered changing into something smaller that might have a higher chance at survival, but was unsure still, so hesitated. “This really isn’t how I pictured my life at all…” she muttered.

Ursa kept her eyes on the screen, watching Nefaerio with an exhausted expression, “Alright. Well I can’t say I am happy about your answer Mr. Krabs. Let me be honest in saying I sincerely didn’t want to have to fight you right now. Anyway...prepare to die...blah blah blah..let’s get on with this. Dill cut the line.”

Nafaerio was halfway through saying something when the line was cut and Ursa sat up, looking over at Takashi, “You heard him. Increase the speed.”

She then turned to look at Jean, her expression calm, “Relax..I’m Ursa Cooper..greatest smuggler in the seven galaxies..yada yada yada..I’m great...yada yada yada...I have been doing this for ten years...yada yada yada... honestly I am too tired for assurances. So let me be frank, I am rich as hell and have spent almost all of my first couple million kredits on two things. One is the badass sound system and a music playlist so awesome that I could have a dance party at any moment and the second is ship alterations. So have some faith and watch me kick some bug ass.”

Ursa walked over to Emmett, and lit a cigarette, her movements slow, “So you wanted to say something. Make it quick..because you know as fast as I do how ‘Plan Chicken’ works?”

Mac shook his head, moving to Juniper and handing her a weapon before moving over to Damian and Jean, “Alright. So let you in a bit cowboy, on the STUPIDEST plan ever created.”

Ursa turned to Mac and flipped him the bird as she talked with Emmett.

Mac shook his head, “Alright. So when we get to about a hundred clicks, we are gonna drop, and I am not talking about the beat. When we drop, we are going to flip and shoot. Just shoot at whatever you can when we get into the underbelly of that beast. Everyone knows that when shields are up there is usually at least a few week spots. Anna found seven. The targets are...here.”

He pointed to seven spots in the undercarriage of a holographic ship that mirrored Nefaerio’s. He stopped then pulled back, “We need to destroy at least 5 of the 7 to get through his shield. The gunners are going to be on full alert...but apparently they are going to be busy with an oversized robot chicken that will be holographically projected on the surface of their ship. We have been shooting moving floating camera’s with cloaking devices on them that will move to appropriate locations in order to project this visual image which will hopefully give us time to destroy the shield and get onto that ship where we will...perhaps be able to beat the captain and steal his fuel. Sounds like a plan?”

Chewing on his lower lip Jean gave the slightest shake of his head. “No actually, that doesn't sound like a plan, it sounds to me like a desperate ploy that ain’t gonna work… - An’ I love it!” The rough rider had undergone several similar insane strategies in his past, which usually involved walking into an impossible situation and using wits and guts to survive. The knowledge that they were not actually playing a interstellar game of chicken gave a serious boost to Jean’s moral.

Ursa gave the cowboy a warm smile, happy that someone realized her plans were cool! She pulled out some neon green sunglasses to amplify that fact and put them on her face, “I know. I’m a genius.”

She turned to Dill, “Track 82 Dill!”

Dill shook his head, “I should have stayed in college!”

Suddenly the classic Beastie Boys jam, “Intergalactic” erupted from the ships speakers.

Emmett listened to Ursa’s plan on destroying the ship from underneath, but was still skeptical about this plan working. Track 82 started playing and Emmett knew that this was one of Ursa’s favourites but was only played on special occasions like a space battle. Emmett went to his battle station and got ready to help destroy the seven spots from underneath, he entered the gun mount and waited for the right moment to fire. Emmett didn’t have the best success when it came to the mounted turrets but he always had decent accuracy. Emmett has been in a few battles with Ursa and they seem to always work out one way or another, that’s why Emmett followed her orders when it came to the plans that she created. As the ship started to move faster all Emmett could hear was Intergalactic by the Beastie boys playing over the ships PA. Emmett never understood her liking for the band but never complained; it seemed decent just not his cup of tea.

Aboard the Gorefill Nafaerio was in high spirits and clunked to the forward end of the bridge eagerly awaiting the oncoming maneuver he was about to witness. Yes, he expected Ursa to pull away. His own ship could handle the impact, suffering only major damage and lives lost, which could all be repaired in time. The smaller freighter on the other hand would be demolished and all aboard killed. No, a fiery girl like Ursa would pull something spectacular, and Nafaerio couldn’t wait to see it. “C’mon fishy fishy.” He growled motioning towards the Ranger. He could nearly see the faces of those on the opposing bridge, moving about and conversing. Soon they would all be prisoners, destined to a life of forced service in the growing Bobian army. Almost all anyway, Ursa would be serving a different task. “Make this chase easy my little fish, take th’ bait, hook line and sinker…”

Watching the ship come closer at the pace it was, Juniper’s instincts kicked in despite having not made the decision to shift. Her body began to change and transform like it had many times before, into one of her most favorite creatures when in need of hiding. A small shrew, the same form as when she originally hopped a ride onto Ursa’s ship. This time, instead of hiding under or behind something, she scurried over toward Ursa and climbed up and onto her lap. Her dark black eyes stared at Ursa’s face, which seemed fairly confident, but the look might not portray what she truly felt inside.

Ursa’s focus was away from Emmett and currently was on the large ship in front of her. She stalled as best she could so that the ships would collide by around the time the track wound down to around two minutes and thirty seconds. She took these lasting minutes to think how she could perhaps try to get out of this fight and back to bed. She could sacrifice the crew but she assumed the survivors would mutiny so that was out. She also would miss them, so she figured that she would probably have to fight. Which was basically suicide in her condition. She dug into the pocket of her denim jacket to pull out two adrenaline shots. She could already feel her energy draining her, the body becoming heavy after a long day. Suddenly her thoughts were pushed away when she noticed a small shrew crawl up her leg. She knew it was Juniper and pushed up her glasses, placing her hand beside her legs so she could hop onto her hand. When Juniper did, Ursa brought her up to face level and smiled, “Hmmm….I forgot you can do that. Stay that way for a bit. You just gave me an idea.”

She opened the front pocket of her jacket and let Juniper crawl into it so her head could pop out at any time. She then shoved the lid of one of the adrenaline needles into her mouth so she could pull it off. She spit it out of the way then shoved the needle into her skin, biting her lip before she jumped up and headed towards Takashi’s chair so she could see out the window. Naefario’s bridge was getting closer, the engines grinding as the beat of the song got louder. Anna screamed out, “Cutting gravity. 100 clicks!”

Suddenly anyone and anything that wasn’t belted down started to float in the air. Ursa floated up slightly but she held her body down and vertical by Takashi’s chair. Naefario’s bridge was now fully visible and Ursa gave him an awkward wave before she screamed out, “Alright guys! Get ready AND listen to DJ ADROCK who knows WHEN TO LET THE BEAT….MMMMM Drop!”

Suddenly the engines were cut off and Ursa gave Naefario the classic “Fuck you” finger gesture before the ship dropped down into empty space. Ursa flipped right off her feet rolling around into the air as she hollered out, “DILL! Send the chicken!”

The camera’s turned on when suddenly a ginormous meteor sized chicken with a red laser eye, razor sharp teeth and metal claws started to peck and squawk at Naefario’s ship. Ursa finally gained some control and crossed her legs in mid-air, “Alright. We got about ten minutes to break those shields then a small group of us will board the ship. I’ll stay here and go to sleep, so you can tell me how it goes..”

The crew suddenly looked at her with a few disgusted expressions and she shrugged, “I’M KIDDING!! Of course I’m coming.”

She inwardly sighed, wishing she was just the cabin girl who could go hide in the potato bin while she whispered to shrew Juniper, “I really wasn’t…”

Suddenly the engines turned on and the gravity was back. Ursa fell onto her captain’s chair as Takashi pushed forward under Naefario’s ship, forcing their own vessel to face up while Mac and Damian sent large plasma blasts towards two weak points.

Jean jerked on the command station’s control, bringing the aft cannon about so that it was aiming for the pirate ship’s underbelly. The cannon was a small auto firing one, more likely used for shooting down snub fighter or pursuit craft rather than large cruisers. Nevertheless he sighted in on the screen, adding extra power to the weapon’s energy cells to coil up for an extra powerful burst. “Underway!” He cried pushing down on the safety and fire simultaneously.

A jet of red plasma rocketed from the turret’s guns arcing in a predetermined path straight into the pirate’s shields. They held momentarily before a few shots punched through, slamming into the armored hull and sending tiny melted shards fizzling into space. “Yeeehaw!” Jean rotated the turret once more, sighting in on another weak spot. “That’s three down, four left to burn!”
Ophelia's gaze shifted slightly behind Jax to see the door handle turn, and Morthos stepped out. Jax proclaimed that they had made up, and then Roxas joined them as well. Within a few moments, Morthos was bringing the four of them to the dining hall for breakfast. All of the different scents confused Ophelia, who was needing to feed. There were humans and tieflings and lots of food, which just made her head hurt. She sat down at a seat and simply stayed quiet for a while everyone ate. She wondered when she should tell the boys about the pregnancy thing, and began to weigh the pros and cons of telling them before the task at hand, or after once they all returned home. The thing with missions of any kind though, was that there was always a risk that some of them might not return home at all. She decided to tell them now before anyone else showed up.

Before she spoke, Ophelia wiped her clammy palms on her thighs and glanced at Jax. She knew that her sister would have her back no matter what. Despite it not being necessary, Ophelia took a deep breath and then cleared her throat. Her teammates had their mouths full, so she took the opportunity to speak without hesitation, or she might chicken out.

"I just wanted to say, while I had the chance, that I know missions like this are very dangerous. Sometimes they can even be fatal..." Her eyes shifted to Roxas for a moment before beginning to speak again. "I thought that I should bring this up now, just in case, God forbid, something bad were to happen." She breathed out again softly, then ran her fingers over her stomach slightly, though the motion would go unnoticed by the others since she was short, and the table hid most of her body.

"Since we are a team, I want you all to know that... I'm pretty sure I am pregnant... I can, and will still fight in this mission with you. It won't affect my ability to do that. I will get it confirmed as soon as possible, but I'm about 99 percent sure that it's the case. And I just... Wanted you all to know... Because you're all my best friends, and my team. And I care about you all."

At this moment, once she had finished speaking, she waited silently, with her shoulders relaxed but squared off, trying to feel confident. Hoping that no one would start to freak out.
Jax was up and out of bed by around five, moving away from Morthos to grab a few tombs she had brought with her. She re-read some passages about arch demons and spells that she could re-work to suit her magic. After awhile, she touched her cross, putting the book down to get up and sit by the window. She shut her eyes reinforcing prayers to her two gods and the path she took between them. Halfway through her words a knock was heard on the door. She paused feeling a sense of foreboding. Something evil was hiding behind that door. Instinct screamed at her to be wary. She shook her head walking over to the handle, pausing only for a few minutes before opening it. She let out a short sigh when she saw it was Ophelia, her sisterly bond pushing away the instinct. She turned to look at Morthos who seemed to still be fast asleep before moving into the hallway and shutting the door. She rubbed her eyes before crossing her arms, “I am still mad, but I understand I need to control my temper sometimes, especially when we have bigger issues to deal with. So I apologize for getting so heated.”

Ophelia listened to Jax speak after stepping out into the hallway. She nodded gently and then spoke up. “I’m sorry I didn’t say anything sooner. I know I should have. But like I said last night, I haven’t seen nor heard from this Eileen person. I don’t know for sure if she’s not dead. Or if Roxas is just… getting worse?” She sighed softly at the truth in her words, pausing.

When she continued, her eyes connected with Jax’, and they were dark though her voice did not match the darkness her eyes showed. “We are a team. I promise you from now on I will make sure we talk about things that might be of importance. On the other side, I do think that you let your temper take control of your words sometimes… But I forgive you.”


Jax listened patiently, feeling immediately better after getting that out in the open. She moved over to her sister and gave her a hug, “Thank you. I know I’ve been a bit crazy these past few days. As you know I have my period...so my emotions are just having a party. It’s not a good excuse but...yeah.”

She let out a sigh, happy that Ophelia didn’t mention anything about Morthos sleeping in her bed. That shouldn’t have happened and it only could lead to questions that she really didn’t want to answer right now.

Ophelia stopped and her throat, though already burning, tightened up and she couldn’t speak for a moment. When she cleared her throat, she tried to ensure her voice was smooth. “What did you say?”

Jax stopped and gave her a confused expression, “Huh? I said it’s not a good excuse?”

“Jax… I don’t have my period right now…” was all Ophelia was able to say in response. She felt overwhelmed and extremely tired in this moment.

“What do you mean? Of course you have your period. We always have them at the same…” Jax’s eyes widened. She moved to the other side of the hallway and sat beside a table of flowers on a small stool looking over at her sister, “Are you sick?”

Ophelia thought about the past few days and what’s been going on, and how she’s been feeling. “Well yeah I’ve been getting sick a lot, but I assumed it was from using the ley line and then maybe from the sleeping potion… But I got sick last night too after talking to Roxas…” Her voice wavered and cracked at the end of her sentence and her eyes stung with tears.

Jax shoved her hands through her hair, “Have you and Roxas been careful?”

She sat up, no judgment in her expression, just concern, “You don’t think that you’re? Can you... even without a potion or something?”

“What do you mean without a potion or something? I literally don’t know anything about this… It wasn’t really something I studied during my classes Jax… What should I do!” Ophelia began pacing around the hallway, trying to keep her voice down so she wouldn’t wake the boys.

Jax stood up and raised her hands, “Calm down..it’s alright. It might just be a bad case of blood. Maybe you ate a really sick dude or something. Got a bad batch. Maybe. It doesn’t mean your pregnant!”

“I haven’t fed on another human for a long time Jax… I’ve been hunting animals and feeding from Roxas mostly. When did we go to the club?” Ophelia said, moving toward her sister and her voice sounding panicked. She placed her hands on Jax’s shoulders and tried to think back to see if it lined up, or if this was just some weird thing happening.

“Uh...A month or so ago I think..It was like a few days before our first mission.” Jax spoke, “Wait..have you and Roxas been...you know doing it, without protection? I mean how did this even happen...if you are? God...we are going to be fighting a demon soon. If you are you shouldn’t be put into danger. Oh dear god. Oh dear god.” Jax started to pace mumbling to herself about the variables.

“Well that night after the club… Yeah I guess… I don’t wanna talk about that! TMI. But try to calm down… I can fight perfectly fine! I’ll be fine… We’ll fight this demon and kick it’s ass and then… and then it’ll be fine. Right?” Ophelia looked up at Jax expectantly, feeling scared for once.

Jax paused for a second, scared and unsure about any of this but she knew she had to be a big sister right now, so she put on her confident smile, “Hell yeah it will be fine. If your not...then we stay more safe sex conscious in the future. If you are...then that kid is going to be part of the greatest family in existence! Alright. When you get a moment though..you need to phone mom! She should know the most about this stuff.”

Ophelia nodded and wiped at her eyes with the back of her hands. “I promise I will call her when things aren’t so chaotic here. I think worrying about Morthos’ mom is priority right now. Thank you Jax… for not yelling at me about this… I know I don’t really know that much stuff…” She moved and hugged Jax tightly to her for a long moment. She wasn’t sure how long they had though before the boys woke up.

Jax hugged her sister, tears welling up in her eyes, “Okay...I love you, ya know, and I want you to be so careful today. If anything happened to you, I swear I would raise the entire underworld in response. God..I don’t know how I am going to keep this all a secret. You know I suck at hiding things.”

“I will worry about telling the boys. You need to focus on getting rid of this bastard demon… Okay? I love you too Jax.”

Jax nodded, “Alright. Let’s wake em up and get going. Faster we get to dealing with this asshole, faster we get you a pregnancy test.”

Suddenly she turned as the door opened and looked over at Morthos, “We made up!”
Ophelia watched as Jax and Roxas began arguing. Her eyes widened slightly as Morthos stepped in between them. Almost immediately after though, Jax started shouting angry again after Roxas explained about Eileen. But she wasn't just getting mad at Roxas. She eventually turned her attention to Ophelia and began getting mad at her as well. Ophelia simply watched Jax's face and listened to her speak. Before she walked away, Ophelia spoke up.

"There are more important things than something that might not even be real, Jax Kariana. No offense Roxas..." Ophelia stated. She felt annoyed and tired. Finally Jax stormed off to a bedroom and Ophelia then turned to Morthos.

"I'm sorry about all of this. I know you probably just want to get some rest so we can help your mom. I understand that this seems out of the blue, but in my eyes it wasn't something of immediate importance... Let's get some rest."

Ophelia let out a long sigh and turned to Roxas. She wasn't looking forward to spending a night with him; the first time since being with him. She knew he was gonna get mad at her about the potion thing. And now also about the Eileen thing. She walked into the room and simply sat on the bed, waiting.
Juniper, Emmett, and Jean began walking off toward the kitchen. But as they did so, Jean fell in step beside Juniper and lowered his voice to speak with her. Emmett lead the way, so this gave the cowboy and the girl a chance to speak mostly alone. Juniper noticed though that Emmett's posture and stride as the two spoke was growing annoyed and his body went from relaxed to tense. She figured he was listening somewhat to their conversation.

"A mass genocide was not how I planned my future. So justice for my people would be welcomed by me, however that may come about. Our people were so peaceful. I'm not really used to feeling this type of negative emotion." She sighed softly, her shoulders slouching a little. She felt spoiled speaking that way. She couldn't deny she had a good life up until this point. Even still she had fell into the hands of someone who seemed rather caring beneath her tough exterior.

"I'm sorry about your family, Jean. I'm sure you have many questions for me also. Which if you like, I will answer to the best of my knowledge and ability. I do think though, some food is definitely in order," she stated. She hesitated in the doorway of the kitchen and watched as Emmett walked off toward a bedroom. Juniper's eyebrow raised slightly and then she walked into the room and was told to help herself to pizza.
Juniper didn't speak after Jean asked her his questions. Instead she decided to show him the only reason she knew of that would bring anyone to want to try to destroy her planet. She figured maybe other galaxies and governing people were possibly intimidated by her power. Maybe they found them a threat. Suddenly Juniper's petal dress began to shift and move on it's own as she stood still. Her height changed slowly, and you could hear her bones moving as well as her muscles. Her face began to change shape and her skin tone changed slightly as well while her hair grew in length and changed colour. Before their eyes, she went from looking like an innocent young, perhaps even odd, girl, to looking exactly like Ursa. Every detail was the same. Her voice and eyes the same, and she stood next to the real Ursa with a slight smile. But her smile disappeared as quickly as it came.

"My ability to change shape is one that most people might find to be a possible threat. Or, on the other hand, my genetics that allow this to happen could be of great and terrible use to someone if they were to find a way to harvest it. My home planet has nothing geology wise that would be of anyone's interest as far as I'm concerned. The planet is... was... beautiful. It was a paradise for most, in my eyes."

Juniper stopped speaking for a few moments, and then continued. "I'll introduce myself properly. I am Princess Juniper Niahm of Theon, Theonia Z17, First and only daughter to Xavier and Alice Niahm, King and Queen of Theon." Juniper curtsied and then transformed back to her normal, young looking self.
Ophelia listened to Jax speak while they followed Morthos to the guest bedrooms. Her sister was asking about something that had been off about Roxas. Part of Ophelia wanted to keep quiet, but she knew that if Eileen was around like Roxas thinks she is, whether real or not, it would be easier for Morthos and Jax to both be prepared for the possibility of an intense battle. A sudden wave of nausea moved through Ophelia then and she stopped and let go of Roxas' hand, moving to lean against the corridor wall. She closed her crystal blue eyes, and breathed out through her nose. The last thing she wanted right now was to vomit in Morthos' castle.

Once the feeling passed, she moved back over to Roxas and took his hand again. "Well, there was been something I've been needing to talk to you about, Jax..." Ophelia started saying. She wasn't sure Roxas wanted her to say anything still, but she was going to anyway. She lowered her vice and then continued on.

"A while back I went over to Roxas' and well.. He shot me? Because he thought I was this woman Eileen... He can tell you the rest. But it is something I think you should be aware of."
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