Interlude: Am I The Only Man You've Ever Had?
If I’d known it was this boring out here, I would’ve kept my bloody mouth shut,
Spike thought, drifting aimlessly through space.
He stretched until he was fully horizontal and began paddling, as if he was swimming. Maybe I can hitch a ride somewhere,
he rationalized. But at least it gave him something to do besides think about how he got into this mess.
The trouble started an hour earlier, after Red Dwarf
was boarded by the marauders from the Scourge.
Wesley, for whatever reason, urged Spike to hold back at first. They, along with their team, and the Dwarf
crew, were chained and taken to the pirate ship’s brig. Except for Harmony.
Their stay in the brig was uneventful, Spike recalled. Lorne paced about nervously; Wesley and Gunn huddled with the big plastic bloke – Kramer or something like that, his name was – and the sort-of vampire-looking guy and tried to figure out who this Space Pirate Roberts was. At least Spike had his spare pack of silk cuts for company. Initially.
“So there’s another me? In your dimension?” this dimension’s Lister asked him. “Is he big-time? A rock star, maybe?” Spike remembered feeling bad for the guy, and not just because of the hairdo. Stuck on that crate with … well, without women? No need to make him feel worse.
“Well, no, but I work with the guy,” Spike told him. “Hell of a fighter. Chick magnet. My hero.” At least, he remembered, that made the guy smile.
Then they got the word: The Space Pirate Roberts wanted to see them. Immediately.
With a smirk, Spike remembered thinking Swiss Family Robinson was probably the kind of guy who spent hours deciding which black shirt to wear with his matching mask and tights. He was like Angel that way. But he talked like Tony Montana.
“Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya,” he remembered the pirate saying once the group was brought to him, then taking off his mask and walking directly toward Spike. “You stole my beloved. Prepare to die.”
“No idea what you’re talking about, Cap’n Crunch” Spike replied. “We’re just here to pick up my ex-bird and –“ Then the pirate slapped him so hard he fell just beside Wesley.
“You have no
right to speak of my Alia that way!” Roberts raged. “You could never imagine someone so pure, so –“ this time Spike interrumpted, with a loud, mocking laugh.
“Now I know you’ve got the wrong chickie, Skipper,” the vampire said as he pulled himself up. “She’s not exactly where no man has gone before.” Then he approached Montoya/Roberts and sneered. “And I know because I’ve been there. Warp Factor Five.” The flare in his eyes made it all worth it. Except for the next moment.
“He dies now!” Montoya said. It took 10 of his men to hold Spike down. “Off with his head!”
Then, Spike remembered, Wesley cut in.
“That’s not very pirate-like, Captain,” Wes said, brushing off Gunn and walking toward Spike. “I thought a proper pirate tossed dogs like this one –“ he kicked Spike hard in the ribs – “off the plank.”
After that, Spike recalled, it all moved so fast: his shocked look at Wesley’s cold eyes; being dragged toward the Scourge’s
airlock and realizing what Wes was playing at … only seconds before he was thrown off the ship. But because he didn’t need to breathe, all he had to do was play dead until he was safely away from the ship.But now what?
He wondered. Swim around like a bloody salmon?
He moved into a sitting-type position and failed to light another silk cut. Then he noticed a light above him, a small craft closing in until it was alongside him.
“Going my way?” Ace Rimmer asked, his hand extended.