The Gundam Beauty Pageant|
by Charon the Sabercat
Captain deals with the fact that, if he doesn't win anything, he's not cock-of-the-block. Baku also learns Captain's a depressed drunk, and Madnug learns a little about about what Captain thinks of him.
A couple of inbetweens before the next round. The Most Beautiful round is going to be cut, because Most Detailed pretty much already covered it. In this chapter, Captain learns the sting of fair-weather friends and what it's like to be drunk.
Chapter 14 - Chapter 15 - Chapter 16
The Gundam Beauty Pageant|
15. Captain's battle after a loss
Talgeese was holding the ladder steady as Charon finished tieing the string for what would be the pinata. Captain was watching from below, tense and ready to catch her if she fell. Charon finished the knot with a flourish. "MEL, GET THE PINATA!"
Captain cocked his head. "Aren't you supposed to put an accent on the n?"
"Yeah, but I don't know how to work the tilde button. It's an understood accent." Charon tapped her claws anxiously. "Mel! Where's the pinata?!"
"What's the matter?" Talgeese's voice masked a hint of glee. "You scared of heights?"
Charon nodded, "Yeah, actually, and on top of that, I hate- LLLlllLLLLllAAAaaaAAdddDDDeeeeEEErrrRRrssSSs!"
Talgeese shook the ladder violently, throwing Charon into the Kibaomaru's arms. She paniced and dug her claws into any crack she could find, making Kibaomaru whine uncomfortably. "Captain, kill him!"
Captain smacked Talgeese into the ground.
Kibaomaru growled and tried to pull Charon off of him. "Ergh- someone! Help, she's like a magnet!"
Gunpanzer grabbed Charon by the sides and gently tried to pull her off, but she wouldn't let go. "L-l-l-ladders..."
"She's stuck." Gunpanzer gave her another tug. "Yeh-up, she's stuck."
Mel finally arrived from the back door to the break room, scooting past three very drunk members of the Dark Axis and two not-too-drunk members of the Dark Axis, holding the pinata (a Sgt. Pepper Lonely Hearts Club Band drum). Mel was a sphinx, with a lower torso of a lion and the upper body of a human. She had a sharp face and eagle-like features, and large brown wings growing out of her back. A long, whippish tail snapped around her legs as if it had a mind of its own. Her hair was dirty blonde, and her clothes were covered in various Kingdom Hearts insignia.
She spotted Charon hanging off of Kibaomaru and screamed (Mel was very exciteable). "What happened?"
Captain nudged the unconscious Talgeese with his foot. "Talgeese threw her off of the ladder."
Mel flinched knowingly. "Charon hates heights."
"And ladders," Gunpanzer added.
All at once, the rest of the Gundams poured through the doors, murmuring to themselves and looking for their favorite from of entertainment. Gundiver parked himself at the computer, and Bakunetsumaru stole the kareoke catalogue and began searching for songs that he didn't have to sing. Daishogun and Deathscythe searched for board games. The leftover Dark Axis bots parked themselves at the bar and began drinking.
Kibaomaru still had Charon stuck to his shoulders. "Somebody get this damn cat!"
Zero stroked Charon's back twice and then effortlessly lifted her off of Kibaomaru. The warlord was in awe. "How did you do that?"
Zero smiled. "I understand cats."
Charon sighed. "Thank you..."
Captain smiled; they were such a goofy bunch sometimes. He began to look around for someone to talk to. Bakunetsumaru was being abducted by his older sister, and Zero was now deep in conversation with Kibaomaru. Gunpanzer was watching TV... again. Gundiver was parked in front of the computer... again...
His questions were answered when Guneagle entered with Maxine in tow. His eyes brightened hopefully, and his faceplate clicked open. "Hi, Guneagle! Hi..."
They didn't notice him. They didn't even walk near him; they simply sat on the sofa next to Gunpanzer and began watching.
Lacking any other options, Captain approached the sofa and stood behind Maxine, waiting for her to notice him. She was tucked under Guneagle's arm, snuggled into the crook of his hip. Guneagle was stroking her side with his fingers, every now and then giving her shoulders a soft squeeze.
A few minutes passed. Captain waited over Maxine's head, hoping she'd snapped out of the television's hypnotic watch, but nothing happened. He finally gave her neck a tap. "Maxine?"
She and Guneagle both jumped in their seats, then turned around. "Oh, Captain!"
"Hey, Cap'n, wassup, buddy?" Guneagle formed a fist. Captain followed, and they knocked their fists together.
Finally, thought Captain. He smiled back at Guneagle and-
"Hey, Cap, will ya hold on a second? I don't wanna miss this."
Guneagle went straight back to the show, leaving Captain's mouth open in half-syllable. He shook his head to recover. "Maxine?"
"Hi, Captain." Maxine reached an arm up and opened her faceplate. Captain gave her a half-hug and nuzzled her cheek, leaning in for a deep hug. She responded by pulling away and closing her faceplate, slipping back into Guneagle's lap.
Captain was left there, stuck in hug mode and hovering above the sofa. Why had she done that?
He retreated a ways and put his feet back on the ground. "So, Maxine... I see that you and Guneagle have made quick friends..."
Maxine nodded, not looking at him, but at Guneagle. "Mm hmm. He is a lot of fun to be around. He's so..." She leaned into him harder. "Confident..."
"Confident..." Captain was silent. Confidence was something he lacked and Guneagle made up for tenfold. But why would she bring that up? And why wasn't she telling him this?
"Well..." Captain settled down on the back of the sofa. "What do you-"
He darted away from the sofa and the Gundams that had hushed him. "Sorry...?"
What happened? What did he do? Captain looked around the room; everyone was busy with something, with somebody, and he was all alone in the middle. It didn't make any sense... He was the pride of the Neotopia room after he'd won the Most Sexy contest.
Alone. But... he didn't want to be alone. He never was alone anymore, not since he was a prototype. If only Shute were here-
Wait! That was it! He'd call Shute!
Oh... He had forgotten. Shute, Princess Rele, and Genkimaru were being housed in the next building with Charon and Mel. He couldn't even hear him from where he was.
He sighed hopelessly. There was no one left. No one even noticed him, much less wanted to talk to him. He was alone...
His head snapped up; Bakunetsumaru was waving him over from the bar. He ran to the seat beside Bakunetsumaru and hunkered down.
"If we're gonna be lonely, Captain," Baku began to explain.
The Neotopian nodded in agreement. "We might as well be lonely together."
It was a little later in the night, and the Dark Axis had left the bar and taken their drinking to the kareoke stage. Charon had turned down the volume so their drunken rabble was lowered to a minimum, but they were still a little harder to tune out than the average jackhammer. In an attempt to drown out the bots, most of the Gundams had either gone to bed or to the bar.
Captain's sense of balance was holding up, no pun intended, but just barely. He was leaning most of his weight on the counter, fingering his glass and pushing it back and forth. He was holding his head up in one hand, keeping his face pointed towards Bakunetsumaru. The samurai was sipping small glasses of rice wine, so he wasn't as drunk as the rest... but he was getting there.
"I wonder..." Baku hiccuped. "I wonder where Genk'maru ish... haven't sheen him lately..."
Captain slapped the counter. "I haven' sheen Sshute shince he started hanginging out with the Prinschess..."
Deathscythe, who had fallen asleep sometime during the Dark Axis's third repeat of "Rawhide", jerked awake suddenly. "What?"
"I am jealoush!" Captain yelled, throwing his head up and closing his eyes, trying to emphasize. "Of that little brat! Sshe'ssh gettin' to hang out with Sshute more than I do now-"
Deathscythe leaned past Zero to speak to Captain. "Wait, the little boy in the red sshirt ish with the Prinschess rightnow?"
Captain frowned, fiddling with his glass again. "Prinschess alwaysh getsh Sshute on the Gundamunglesship, and now sshe'sh got him for the whole conteshtt..." He grasped his chest suddenly, and his body lurched forward omninously. A green flush flashed across his face, but quickly subsided. "Damn cat'sh got 'em all the way on the other shide of the building, an' I can't even find him."
He hiccuped, thumping his chest to settle his fluttering soul drive. "You know, you know, I hav'n' got a lick ofh att'ntion shince I losht the last contesht."
Baku raised his glass to toast Captain. "Y'rr too good fer any of 'em."
"B-but-" The Neotopian hiccuped. "But I'm lonely! Nobody'sh talkin' to me... An' I don' have shishtersh or brothersh like..." He pointed to Baku, his eyes blank. "Uh... whoever you are. Well... (hiccup) not unlesshh you count Madnug."
"You know..." Baku stopped to steady himself, his voice unsteady. "You know, I alwaysh thought... that that Magnug guy?"
Captain nodded, "Yeah?"
"He'sh not that bad," Baku admitted. The twirled his finger around his cheek, missing his temple. "Jusht a little crazshy in de head-"
Captain lurched forward, nearly throwing himself off of his stool but effectively stopping Baku. "Heyheyheyheyeheyeheyehey- (hic) Hey." He stopped. "Hey. That guy ish my little brother."
"If-if-if that guy'sh your little brotherr..." Baku reasoned. "Then... the blue one ish your shishterer..."
"No no no no no..." Captain leaned back to look Baku in the eye and fell onto Zero's shoulder. "Sshhe... sshe washn't made.. by Kao Pie. Sshe wash made by shomebody... elshe..." A massive hiccup made Captain bounce in his seat, shaking Zero off of his stool. The Neotopian fell on top of his Lacroan friend and laughed.
Baku shook his friend. "I'm sh... shur... I have a buncsh of shtupid friends..."
Captain crawled back onto his stool, his arms shaking. "But Magnug ish my little brother..." He leaned himself on the counter again. "He'sh my only little brother, and I let him fall into the pit..."
Baku shook his head, a rational thought making his head hurt. "Wait... you let him fall in the pit... he sshhould be dead."
Captain, defying the laws of stereotypical drunks, was suddenly on his feet and was running full speed towards the kareoke stage! With a metallic crunch, Captain had thrown himself into Madnug and knocked him to his feet. The black Gundam roared in anger, "Get off me!"
Captain grappled Madnug's stomache. "I'm shorry I let you fall!" He dug his face into Madnug's gut, bawling like a baby. "I'm shorry!"
Madnug's stomache flipped. This full-grown Gundam was attached to his stomache and crying on him! The great hero Captain Gundam, the already pitiful human sell-out, reduced to a sobbing pile of scrap by a few glasses of scotch. Disgusting!
"You shtupi-" Grappler and Sazabi pulled the sobbing Gundam off of Madnug and threw him back into the bar, knocking down Ashuramaru and Talgeese in the process. Zero shot into the air like a rocket, flanked by Ashuramaru, Talgeese, Bakunetsumaru, Deathscythe, and Gunpanzer. Gunpanzer lifted Captain to his feet.
"You got a problem, b-buddy?!"
"Yeah!" Zapper interjected, only after he realized he didn't have anything to say. "Yoourrr... fface!"
Zero rolled up his "sleeves". "That'sh it-"
The room went silent. Britainmaru stood in the doorway, holding an enormous gun. Behind him was Bakunetsumaru's mother, Kuniko, rubbing her eyes like she was tired. "Everyone, go to bed! NOW!"
"Orrr what..." Dom gurgled. "Girrly man?"
Dom coughed up a puff of smog the same color of the scorch marks on his face. "Dom go bed now."
The Neotopian bedroom was a large room filled with military issue cots and not much else. It was seperated from the lounging room and dressing room by Star Trek-esque double sliding doors. The flourescent lighting was turned out for the night, leaving only a small blue nightlight in the very back corner to see by.
Zero laid Captain down in his cot, patting his quaking shoulders. He had to carry the Gundam to his room (Gunpanzer could have done it, but he was already out of the room before Zero could find him). "Capt'n... Capt'n, go to bed..."
Captain was still crying, his eyes outlined in a sickly red. "I let him fall, I let him fall..."
"Cap'n, husshh..." Zero's tongue jutted out of his mouth without his permission. "Pbbtt. Be quiet, you'll wake up the ressht of 'em..."
Zero pushed a pillow into Captain's face; the Neotopian one grabbed it and hugged it to his chest, snuggling it like a teddy bear. "I let him fall, I let him fall..."
Zero left the room before it got worse. Captain continued to cry until he fell asleep, unheard by anyone other than himself.
You know, the original idea I had was pretty simple, but now it's turning into a more complex, involved subplot. I'd like to tell you WHO it involves, but that would defeat the purpose. I can tell you everyone will have at least a sub-story, like a chapter dedicated to them or something, but certain characters will get more.|
Chapter 14 - Chapter 15 - Chapter 16