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…?”
“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!”