#TeamSpaceWestern - Part Seven: Finale

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Last Frontier Saloon: Finale

by Jinn Tiole / jinnis

I drain the last of my rum and let the too warm liquid burn its fiery way down into my stomach. Nothing like sunshine caught in cane spirit to make me talk.

"Well, I invested archive-digging time too. Couldn't let you guys claim all the honours. Wyatt Earth, may she live happily forever, sold her copy of Fray #7 for an exorbitant sum. Today, it sits in a high security display case in the government palace of Karukera Seven, seat of Yeehah galactic council, a rare Terran artefact and symbol of human history. I'm glad the Black Eye officials don't know about Wyatt Earp's badge. They'd hunt it down for sure."

Lin refills my glass with her scavenged strong stuff and winks.

"Did you ever wonder how long it will take for another copy of this infamous Fray magazine to pop up somewhere? Honestly, I believe a whole stack of the things fell into a temporally modified transporter-unit at some point and ended up scattered across the universe."

"Yeah, one even popped up in the middle of Big Bang. It's the reason the universe ended up as a weird place."

Salty sighs exasperatedly. "Didn't you want to tell the star's story, Jinn?"

With a wince, I swallow a sip of distilled garbage and pick up the thread.

"It comes down to pure luck the pod with Doc's remains was picked up at all. As Lin explained, Wyatt sent it on its way while she left Far-far-away on her way to Yeehah. She must have directed it towards Black Eye incidentally, for it was picked up by Dave jumping his long distance hauler from Far-far-away to Black Eye. Guess it's up to you to fit the last piece of this puzzle, Dave."

All heads turn towards my friend. I take the chance to move behind the bar and exchange Lin's horrible booze with a shot of the real thing. Dave shrugs and summarises last year's events.

"Well, the pod blocked our jump coordinates. You know the security protocol of those drives prevents building the hole if sensors detect relevant mass in their vicinity. Luckily, one of the kids scanned the thing before I blasted it supernova. We picked it up and proceeded to jump.

During hole-time, my nosy girls got bored and opened the pod. The contents were well preserved, except for the brain. Case and padding were still intact, but the grey matter itself was missing. What became of it will probably remain another mystery of the universe. The rest is history. Jinn got the star in exchange for ... well, that's our private business. And the Ecrivain's—Black Eye was ready for their reintroduction, after the eternal ban in Far-far-away. Who wasn't bored by ordinary tobacco-based cigarettes? The box was nearly full, enough samples to start a replication business. Awesome-Fags Inc. bought the rights. The proceeds pay nicely for the girls' education."

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