Outlaw Star Fan Fiction ❯ Outlaw Star; The Ryunoken Sword(revised, rededited, and better than ever) ❯ Epilogue ( Epilogue )

[ Y - Young Adult: Not suitable for readers under 16 ]

(Official disclaimer:  This work is entirely a fan fic.  I do not own the rights to Gene, Melfina, or any of the themes, concepts, alien races, planets, starships, or other characters that appear in the “Outlaw Star,” anime or manga.  So Bandai, Sunrise, or whoever owns the rights to “Outlaw Star,” PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, DON'T SUE ME!!   I'm only doing this to honor your work and to show my respect and appreciation for what has become my favorite anime.)
(Author's notes: Well, this is it. The end of my fic. I would like to thank everyone who read and reviewed my story and ensuring me that I wasn't wasting my time with this. It's taken me almost threeyears to get it finished and I appreciate all of your patience. As some of you might already know, I've given permission to Jex the Shadow Psychic to write a sequel to the Ryunoken Sword. There are tworeasons for this. When I first began this fic, I had two objectives(1)show everyone how a REAL Outlaw Star fic should be written (2) test and develop my abilities as a writer. I succeeded in both goals beyond my wildest dreams. Andnow, my college career is almost overand I'm afraid I won't be having the time anymore to write fanfictions. But this won't be the last you all hear from me. For the past few months, I've been researching and developing a Tolkien/Lodoss/Inuyasha-esque idea of mine that I hope to turn intoa long term project and maybe even get published. I've already gotten a rough idea for the first book and I plan to write some short back stories that I plan to post on fictionpress.com. So if you all liked the Ryunoken Sword…trust me……you ain't seen nothing yet!
And now, let's watch the ending unfold together.)
“Swanzo, those parts you ordered are here. They just arrived at supply dock 12.
Without looking up from his clipboard, Swanzo dismissed Diana's announcement with a wave of his gloved hand.
“Yeah yeah, I'll send Mikey to get `em.”
“Mikey is busy loading the ether drive coolant,” Diana reminded him. “Besides, since you were the one who lost the money from that upgrade job at the casino then you should be the one to make it up. Of course I suppose I could just take it out of your percentage this month.”
“All right all right I'll get the damn parts!” Grumbling under his breath, Swanzo kicked off the deck and floated through the zero-g of the dock. As he rose above the anchored cargo hauler, the Corbanite mechanic pressed a button on his palm and triggered the maneuvering jets in his suit to blast him along the dorsal hull. Over along starboard, Mikey stood next to a tube that pumped coolant into the engines from a tank in the ceiling. “Hey Mikey, give me the keys for the shuttle. I gotta run another errand”
“Diana giving you a hard time again huh?” Mikey asked. Reaching into his coveralls, he retrieved the key and tossed it to his partner. “She sure knows how to run a tight ship. You gotta give her credit for that.”
“A tight ship is one thing,” Swanzo said. “Being a tight ass is another. Now I know why Mazren was so keen on shoving her onto us.”
“I heard that,” Diana replied.
“Speaking of which,” Mikey said. “I hear word's finally starting to get around about what they did.”
“I know,” Swanzo agreed. “The whole galactic underground's in an uproar. The Kei falling apart after Hazonko died was just a fluke. But this time, they took out the Master of the entire Toku guild. And now, without their network or a strong leader like Shidowkun, the Toku have begun to fall apart.”
“Think they'll come after Gene again?” Mikey asked. “And what about the other Pirate Guilds like the Ban?”
“I wouldn't worry about it. From what I've heard, most of the Toku were members out of fear of Shidowkun alone. Besides, the Toku were the Ban's biggest competition. With them out of the way, they can move in to take their territory for themselves. There's even a rumor going around that the Ban leaders have placed Gene and the others under their protection as a sign of gratitude.”
“More like a peace offering,” Mikey asked. “They're probably scared they'll wind up on his hit list next. First Hazonko and the Kei and now Shidowkun and the Toku. Gene's become a real Boss killer hasn't he?”
“Yeah I guess. We'll I'd better get those parts before Diana really gets nasty.” With a leap off the hull, Swanzo floated down to the deck and strolled down a corridor to the launch bay where the shuttle he and Mikey used for deliveries around Blue Heaven was anchored. As he climbed through the hatch and settled in the pilot's seat, Swanzo scratched the chin of his suit.
“Gene “Boss-killer” Starwind,” he repeated to himself. “I like it. Has a nice ring to it.”
The doors to the Mount Nantai temple opened with a creak as Urt stepped through the portal and down the hallway towards the central rotunda. As always, Ark and Hadul lacked the common sense to greet their guests at the temple's gateway. Usually, ungracious idiots like them weren't worth her time. But with the fate of the red-haired man and his compatriots still unknown, she decided that she could spare them a few moments. Turning down another corridor, Urt finally found herself at the entrance to the rotunda. She laid her palm on the brass lock, whispered an incantation and the doors opened. Inside, she saw Ark and Hadul standing within the glowing star painted on the rotunda's floor surrounded by the four tablets they had showed to the red-haired man.
“All right you two,” she sighed. “What is it this time?” Ark looked over his shoulder and grimaced.
“You know, you could show a little more respect,” the strawberry blonde wizard commented. “This is a temple you know.”
“You're one to talk about disrespecting Holy Ground. Especially after the last time I caught you two trying to sneak into my apprentices' bathhouses.”
“We would have gotten away with it too,” Ark said. “If Hadul hadn't had another of his fits.”
“Ah now that was a sight to remember,” the old man sighed. “But enough about fond memories.” Hadul stepped aside and gestured to the stone tablets. “Remember these?”
“Of course,” Urt answered. “They're the artifacts we uncovered during our original journey.”
Look closer,” Ark told her. Intrigued, Urt stepped forward for a more precise examiniation. The first three looked exactly the same. It wasn't until she saw the fourth tablet that Urt realized what had Ark and Hadul in an uproar. Where the stone marker had originally showed the dark giant in possession of the sword, it now showed the giant impaled on the weapon's blade as it rose into the sky. Along the tablet's bottom, five figures walked beneath the slain monster. The central figure was a man carrying a young woman in his arms. To his left, a woman in a robe and a larger man walked side by side while a boy and a Ctarl woman walked to the central figure's right.
“Is this all?” Urt asked as she turned away. “I thought you two had something important to show me.”
“Wait a minute!” Ark called after her. “This is important! Don't you get it? The tablets have changed! There's no telling what this could mean.” Urt halted but didn't turn around. She didn't want Ark to interpret her smile as meant him.
“It should be obvious even to you,” she said. “It's an ending. But's it's also a beginning.”
Michael Redburg cursed as the water dripped across his favorite trench coat. That idiot weatherman for the morning broadcast had said Heifong City was only going to have a light shower sometime in the afternoon. So Michael had decided to walk to the KTX tower and ended up getting drenched when the sky suddenly opened up and poured itself right onto his head. As he entered the building, his employees could see what had happened to their station's manager and gave him a wide birth.
After riding the elevator to his office on the top floor, Michael took off his coat to hang over the heater and slumped into his chair. He wiped the rain from his receding hairline and decided to fire the weatherman later. Right now, there were more important matters to be discussed.
“Renee,” he called over the intercom. “Have the people down in studio 5 found a top story for tonight's broadcast yet?”
“Not yet Mr. Redburg,” his secretary answered. “They're still looking for something but I can check back if you'd like.” Now Michael was even more irritated. Ratings had been bad recently. If his people couldn't find anything that could really grip the viewers' attentions then drastic actions would have to be taken.
Suddenly, Michael noticed that his computer screen had been turned on. Not only that, an e-mail had been sent to him. Did Renee turn on his computer before he came in? Michael dismissed that thought when he remembered that Renee didn't have the password. All right, he decided. Let's see what this is. It was probably just another student asking for an internship. He clicked it open, only to find that the e-mail had no message; just some bizarre S-shaped dragon symbol decorating an attachment file. With his curiosity piqued, Michael opened the file and quickly scanned through it.
“Son of a bitch,” he muttered aloud. Rumors of corruption within the Piotr Republic weren't new, but whoever did this had found the evidence to back it up. There were connections to big businesses, pirate clans, one guy named Surgei Rasputa who seemed to be at the heart of it, as well as another guy named Anton Maksiim who tried to expose the corruption and was murdered along with his young daughter for doing so.
“Renee,” Michael called when he finished. “Call studio 5. Tell them I've found a story for them.” As he turned back to his computer, Michael felt his bad mood rapidly disappearing. He didn't just smell good ratings; he smelled an award as well.
Keibara smiled and ran her fingers across the console of the pilot's seat. After returning with Master Jubei and her comrades to their fortress on the Sword's planet, the entire clan had packed up and moved into the now abandoned fortress. Not surprisingly, only a handful of the Dragon Clan had decided to leave after Master Jubei told them that their job was now finished. Soon she and Tyr would be one of them. While helping Korde repair a power line, Keibara had stumbled onto a hanger built into the fortress's base. Inside was a golden diamond shaped spaceship, complete with working ether drive and two pairs of grappler arms. Master Jubei had told her a few days ago that her training was now complete. And once her brand new ship was fully supplied and calibrated, she'd be ready to go. She'd finally be able to strike out into space on her own, seek out adventure and treasure; maybe even drop in to see how Mel and Skinny were doing.
Along the other side of the cockpit, Tyr sniffed and pawed at the conduit leading to the computer core as if he smelled something alive. In the months since she had taken him in, the scale leopard cub had grown and was now as big as a medium sized dog.
“What's the matter Tyr?” she asked. “Smell something interesting. Let's check it out then.” With a spring of her legs, Keibara vaulted into the pilot's seat and turned on the console's holoscreen. She had read through most of the programs already but she couldn't resist re-reading them again.
“I thought I'd find you here.” Keibara's head pivoted on her neck and saw Master Jubei standing behind her. “Enjoying your new toy I see.”
“You could say that,” Keibara beamed. “I never get tired of reading what this ship can do. Class .8 ether drive, armed grappler arms, EMG protected hull, not to mention 190 frontal scanning capabilities. There's even a launcher for a Halcion missile in the ventral hull.”
“It's certainly a remarkable vessel,” Master Jubei said as he leaned on his staff. Since the fight with Shidowkun, Jubei had decided to severe some of his connection to the Ki lines. Already his age was beginning to show in lines across his face. “I can't say for sure what Shidowkun was going to use it for, but I have a feeling it would be better suited for your needs.”
“I guess,” Keibara said with a frown.
“Is something the matter?”
“I guess I feel a little guilty that I'm leaving you and the others. I mean, Dad died to protect you all, and here I am about to go prowling around space.” Keibara felt Jubei's hand gently grasp her shoulder and she looked up to him.
“Let me ask you something. Do you want to stay here for the rest of your life? Is this the path you wish to take?”
“Well…”Keibara said. She knew that she shouldn't be afraid of Master Jubei's questions, but she couldn't help but worry that answering him might sound disrespectful.
“We all must walk our own paths,” Jubei told her. “Above all, Tyr wanted you to be happy. He wouldn't want you to stay here if it was not what you really wanted.”
“Yeah you're right,” Keibara grinned as she turned back to the hollo-screen and casually scrolled down the list of files. “Hey look at this!”
“What is it?” Master Jubei asked.
“There's a file here I've never seen before. It looks like its just junk programming but it's taking up an awful lot of memory.”
“Open it. Who knows it might be something important.” Keibara agreed and clicked the file open. Immediately, the hollo-screen turned to static that slowly began to clarify.
“Hello? Is that you brother?” Keibara and Master Jubei looked to each other in astonishment as the static finally cleared and revealed a young man about Keibara's age. His aqua hair was tied back in a bow and he wore a sheepskin jacket over his slim frame. From the deck, Tyr rose up on his hind legs and grabbed ahold of the armrest to see what was going on. “Oh!” the man cried out. He was obviously surprised but didn't seem too alarmed to see two strangers staring back at him. “Who are you? Are you friends of my brother?”
“Um,” Keibara said. “Sorry, but no.”
“Who are you?” Master Jubei asked. “Are you the ship's computer?
“I guess you could say that. My name…well, I guess my name is Harry. I had to copy myself into the Shangri-La's computer because my body died. My brother, at least I think he was my brother, he went to work for a man who said he could make me a new body. Is it finished yet?”
“This man you brother went to work for,” Master Jubei asked. “Was he named Shidowkun?”
“I think so,” Harry answered. “But I'm not sure. For some reason, gaps are missing from my memory, almost as if someone had tried to filter out parts of my data. But, where is my brother? He told me that my new body was ready, so why am I still trapped in here?” When Keibara and Master Jubei looked to each other in doubt, Harry's face changed from friendly to concerned. “What's the matter?”
“I'm afraid your brother may be dead,” Keibara told him. “Shidowkun betrayed those who were loyal to him. If your brother was still working for him then may have been one of them. Sorry.” Harry frowned slightly
“I see,” he said.
“Are you okay?” Keibara asked.
“My ability to feel emotions are rather limited at the moment,” Harry answered. “I suppose that if I had my body back I'd be extremely sad. But right now, all I can do is feel sorry for Ron. He wanted so much to get a new body for me.”
“Well maybe we can do something. Master Jubei what do you think?”
“Well,” the Wiseman said. “There are facilities here for genetic cloning. If you have a DNA sample of yourself I'm sure Kord and I could get one of the laboratories up and running.”
“I do,” Harry said as he smiled warmly. “Thank you. I've been in here so long that I can hardly remember what reality was like.”
“I'll get on it right away,” Master Jubei said. “Keibara, transmit his file onto a disk. We'll start immediately after dinner.”
“Yes sir.” As Jubei turned to leave, Keibara leaned towards the screen for a closer look. “So you think someone took part of your memories?” she asked as she stroked Tyr's head.
Not just my memories,” Harry told her. “I feel as though a part of my personality was taken out as well.” To Keibara's surprise, Harry smiled brightly as though he was glad to be incomplete. “But you know what? It actually feels good to be missing those parts, almost as if they removed something in me that was bad.”
“You don't say,” Keibara asked. For some reason, she couldn't take her eyes off of Harry. Keibara usually wasn't much for the pretty boy type, but the way Harry smiled just seemed so warm and gentle. Looks like this ship has another bonusthat I can count, she thought. Then again, since the ship belonged to Harry's brother, Keibara guessed that it belonged to Harry now. But maybe he wouldn't mind if she tagged along. After all, it could get lonely in space without anyone to talk too. Resting her chin in her hand, Keibara looked at Harry through lidded eyes and smiled back at him.
“Is something wrong?” Harry asked as he saw how she was looking at him.
“I was just wondering,” Keibara said. “Has anyone ever told you you've got really pretty eyes?”
The black void of space was cold and dark. Even for a being such as itself, the Destroyer could almost feel the silent emptiness sucking away what little sentience it retained. Its power was destroyed, its body smashed and scattered across the universe like sand in the wind, and the sword had slipped out of the galaxy and away from its grasp. But it maintained its desire to annihilate and kill, and it still held on to the awareness that its human host had bestowed upon it. And as long as there was at least one being in this universe that felt hate, the Destroyer's will would be sustained.
With nothing more to fuel it than its own desire, the Destroyer passed beyond the edge of the galaxy and rose above the stars. The sword may have escaped but the Destroyer would follow to wherever it now hid. It would find a new host, a new puppet, and it would forge a new plan. It would restore its body and regain the power it once held even if it took another 30,000 years. And once it did, the Destroyer would return to this galaxy to purge the bloodlines of Gene Starwind and all those who dared to defy it's will.
But for now, all it could do was follow.
“So where are we going?” Melfina asked.
“You'll see,” Gene told her. “Just keep that blindfold on a little longer okay?” Melfina giggled and settled into the seat of the car. After a brief period of rest, repair, and recuperation for everyone; which for Melfina involved moments with Gene almost every time they were alone; the crew had resettled on Sentinel III and returned to their lives as Outlaws. A lot had changed for them of course. One such matter was their new crewmembers. Melfina was happy that Mazren and Slag had decided to stay with them, not just for her sake but for Suzuka's as well. It was going to be fun watching their relationship grow and blossom like hers and Gene's did. The second was something a bit more personal. Working with Mazren and Jim, Melfina had been able to restore Professor Khan's data disk which Mazren had stolen from the Toku. By doing so, she discovered that Khan had installed a hold program in her that froze her menstrual cycle in order to prevent a hormonal imbalance from interfering with her connection to the Outlaw Star. But even though the command codes for controlling the program were on the disk, Melfina had decided not to deactivate it. For even though the thought of having a child of her own was wonderful, especially if it was with Gene, Melfina knew that neither of them were ready for that kind of responsibility just yet.
Shifting in her chair, Melfina pulled a strand of hair from underneath her blind. In the time since the fight with Shidowkun, she had decided to grow it out. It now cascaded to just between her shoulder blades, the weight from the additional length straightening it into flowing waves. I wonder if this had anything to do with how Gene's been acting, she thought. For some reason, Gene had been taking up almost every job that came their way for the past month, no matter how low they paid. And Melfina had a feeling she was going to understand why tonight.
Earlier that afternoon, Melfina had come home from shopping to find the office empty. A note on the kitchen table said that Mazren had taken Suzuka out for a ride on his motorcycle, Jim and Aisha had gone to the movies, and Gene was at a job. With the entire office to herself, Melfina put away the groceries and decided to refresh herself with a shower. She had just gotten out when she noticed the box lying on her and Gene's bed. Inside was a beautiful violet Cheongsam dress with a gold dragon sewn around the skirt and bodice. Was it a surprise gift from Gene? Even if it was Melfina couldn't resist trying it on. The elegant garment fit her like a glove, hugging the curves of her slender body like a second skin. A triangular cut below the collar exposed the top of her cleavage while a pair of thigh high slits ran along both sides. The slits were a lot narrower than the dress Shidowkun had forced her to wear, making her feel sexy without being exposed. Melfina was so engrossed with how she looked that she didn't notice Gene until his reflection appeared behind her. She turned around, embarrassed that Gene had caught her, and noticed that he was wearing a rented tuxedo. He asked her to come with him, saying he had another surprise for her. But when they got in the car, Gene had placed a blindfold over her eyes and told her not to look until he removed it. Suddenly, Melfina felt the car come to a stop and the engine shut off.
“Here we are,” Gene said. Melfina reached to take off her blindfold but Gene grabbed her wrist in time. “On no you don't.”
“But I want to see,” Melfina mock whined.
“You will,” Gene told her as she heard him climb out his side of the car. “Just keep it on just a little longer.” Her door opened and Melfina took Gene's hand as he helped her out of the car. “Watch your step,” he said. “The terrain's a little rough around here.” Gene took her shoulders and guided her towards whatever he had planned as Melfina attempted to take stock of where she was. The ground was too soft to be concrete, there was an earthy smell of hay, and somewhere in the distance she could hear frogs calling to each other. “Okay, now.” Melfina quickly tugged off her blindfold and gasped as she saw where they were. To her right was a field of wheat that had become overgrown with weeds while a rundown barn and silo stood to her left. A pond lay in the distance and the ground was scarred with pits and craters as if a spaceship had barraged the area.
“Gene, this is…”
“Yeah that's right. This is where we first met.” Wrapping one arm around her waist, Gene brushed her hair away from her shoulders and kissed her beating jugular. “Happy birthday Mel.”
“It's been one year since you woke up,” Gene said as he continued to kiss her neck through her raven strands. “One year that we've been together. We're going to meet the others at the Golden Pond restaurant, then you and I are off for a night at the Lunar Motel. But for right now, I just want you all to myself.”
“So do I,” Melfina sighed. One arm reached up to wrap around Gene's neck as she craned her head upward. Gene accepted her invitation and began kissing her neck and throat with renewed vigor until he suddenly stopped.
“What's wrong?” she asked.
“Melfina, I brought you here for another reason. There's something I needed to talk to you about in private.”
“And what would that be?”
“Well,” Gene said as he gently turned her to face her. “I've been doing a lot of thinking lately and…I've decided I don't want you to be my girlfriend anymore.” Melfina felt as though an icecicle had been stabbed into her heart and her entire body went numb. What did he mean by that? Wasn't he happy with her? Did she do something wrong? “Now wait a minute,” Gene said as he saw her reaction. “Don't say anything and please don't start crying. Just listen to me for a minute.”
“All right,” Melfina said, although she could feel a pit of dread begin to open in her stomach.
“Melfina,” Gene told her, “before I met you I didn't think happiness was possible for me. I lived day to day and couldn't care less about what happened to me. But all that changed when I met you. You stayed with me even though a lot of times I didn't deserve it, and you believed in me when not even I did. Melfina, you told me that one night that you couldn't give me everything you wanted to. It's the same with me. I want to give you jewelry, dresses, everything that you could possibly want. But I'm afraid that only thing I can give you for certain is myself. So I am.”
“But Gene I don't understand,” Melfina said. “You just said that you didn't want me to be your girlfriend anymore.”
“That's right,” he said. “I want you to be my wife instead.” Melfina's eyes widened and she covered her mouth in shock. Did she hear him right? Silently, Gene reached into his pocket and pulled out a silver ring with a diamond cut in the shape of yin&yang, two forces equal but different forever bound in harmony. He slipped the band onto her finger and clasped her hand in his. “Melfina you're the best thing that ever happened to me. Will you marry me?” Melfina tried to speak but found that something had seized her vocal chords in an iron grip. Though she promised Gene that she wouldn't cry, she couldn't hold back the tears that began streaming down her face.
“Yes,” she finally managed to choke out between sobs. “Yes of course I will.” Gene's eyes widened as thought he hadn't expected her to say yes before he began laughing slightly. In a flash, Gene grabbed Melfina around her waist and lifted her off her feet, spinning her around before finally setting her back down on earth. Alone in the fields, Gene caressed her cheek and wiped away her tears.
“I love you,” he said,
“I love you,” she answered before he lowered his face towards hers. The kiss they shared was long and slow, and when they finally broke away Melfina buried her face in Gene's throat as she continued to shed tears of joy. She thought back to everything she had experienced in the past year: her awakening and how Gene was the first sight she saw, the search for her past, being pursued by the MacDougal Brothers the Kei and the Toku, learning she was the Maiden of the Leyline, how she and Gene had allowed their fears and doubts to make them drift apart before finding their way back to each other. Everything she had gone through had brought Melfina to this moment. And looking back, Melfina decided she wouldn't change a single thing.
Suddenly, Melfina felt Gene's body tense she as he pulled away from her slightly.
“Gene?” she asked. He was looking towards the fields with a look of disbelief on his face.
“Oh no,” he muttered. “It can't be.”
“Gene what's wrong?” Just then, Melfina heard the voices coming from within the weeds.
“Will you get a hold of yourself and quit bawling!”
“I can't help it! It's so beautiful just like in the movies!”
“If you don't calm down they'll hear us!”
“Too late Jim!” Gene shouted. “We already have!” The weeds along the edge of the field rustled and parted as Jim and Aisha stepped out of cover. Jim was holding a camcorder in one hand while Aisha was wiping her tear reddened eyes with her paws.
“Uh, hey Gene,” Jim laughed nervously.
“What the hell are you two doing here?” Gene demanded. “You and the others are supposed to be waiting for us at the restaurant.”
“Yeah well, talk to her,” Jim said as he thumbed towards Aisha. “She's the one who made us cancel the reservation.”
“What!” Gene yelled as he let go of Melfina. “Do you have any idea how hard I busted my ass to afford that place?”
“Relax we got takeout,” Jim said as he reached back into the weeds and pulled out a cooler. “Besides your hotel reservation's still on. You can use the restaurant money to help pay off the drinking tab you still owe to Clyde.
“So don't be such a tight ass Gene,” Aisha said as pulled an armload of presents from the field behind her. “Now if you don't mind it's time to once again prove that a Ctarl-Ctarl is better than a human at everything, including picking out a birthday present.”
“All right fine,” Gene said as his left eye twitched. “But how did you guys find us anyway.”
“I tracked you down.” Gene and Melfina both jumped as Mazren, Suzuka, and Slag appeared behind them from out of nowhere. “Once Jim filled me in it wasn't that hard to determine,” Mazren said. “That, and your cheap cologne that Slag could follow a mile away.”
“You know Mazren,” Gene said. “I don't recall ever stalking you when you want to be alone with Suzuka.”
“Just consider me a chaperone,” Mazren told him. “I'm here to make sure you kids behave yourselves.”
“I don't believe this,” Melfina heard Gene mumble as Suzuka came forward and embraced her.
“Congratulations Melfina,” she said. “I can't think of anyone who deserves happiness like this anymore than you.”
“Thank you Suzuka,” Melfina said as she returned the assassin's hug. “You know,” she whispered, “my brother's getting a little too old to be a bachelor wouldn't you say?”
“I know,” Suzuka whispered. “I'm working on it.”
“Enough talk,” Aisha said as she slung open the cooler. “Let's eat!” As Aisha reached in and pulled out a jumbo turkey leg, she failed to notice how Slag had silently approached her from behind. Before she had a chance to sink her teeth into the meat, Slag jumped up and snatched the drumstick out of her hand.
“Hey!” she screamed. “Get back here you dumb mutt!”
“Aisha watch out!” Suzuka yelled as the Ctarl chased the wolf around them, almost knocking her over. “Just let him have it!”
“No way! It's the principle of the thing!” Finally cornering Slag against the edge of the field, Aisha grabbed the turkey leg and began a tug of war with Slag digging his feet into the ground.
“Awesome!” Jim said as he began filming the scene with his camcorder. “I'm gonna send this to that home video show. It'll win first prize for sure.”
“Arrrghh!” Gene screamed as he slumped on a nearby rock and rubbed his temples. “I swear to God you people are gonna drive me straight up crazy!” Melfina laughed as she approached her fiancée and hugged his shoulders from behind.
“That's what families are for Gene,” she told him as she pecked his scarred cheek. Gene looked at her and smiled as he took his hand in hers.
“Maybe you're right Melfina,” he said. Ignoring the chaos around them, Gene and Melfina looked up to the sea of stars above them. “Maybe you're right.”
(Well, that's it. I'm really sad to see something I've been writing so long come to an end, but as the Buddha said, nothing in life is eternal.
I'd like to thank all those who read and reviewed this fic. I'd also like to personally thank: Lynderia, whose fic “For the Soul of the Stars” inspired me to write this fic in the first place; Rika-chan, whose website Kindred Spirits helped give me some insight into the minds of the OLS characters; Breakaway-Republic, who helped me realize that I had come dangerously close to turning my OC Mazren into a Mary-Sue type character; and of course the people who made the following animes that were a huge help for inspiring the fight scenes: Yu Yu Hakusho, Mobile Fighter G Gundam, Fatal Fury, Ninja Scroll, Inuyasha, and of course Outlaw Star.
So until the next time we meet, I leave you with the words of rock legends Lynyrd Skynyrd:
“Live fast, die young, and leave a good looking corpse.)