Ace Tucker Space Trucker

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Ace Tucker wasn't surprised when Elvis Presley asked him for a beer. The surprising and the unexpected had always been a part of his life. As a baby, an unknown alien took Ace from Earth and left him on the doorstep of an outer space orphanage. There was no explanation and as far as origin stories go, well, that's all you're going to get.

The overtaxed nuns of the Galactic Church did their best to raise him, but Ace was a strange and difficult child. After eighteen years of frustration, they had finally had enough. The nuns sent Ace out into the galaxy with a half-assed blessing for his soul and the state-mandated fifty credits for bus fare, lunch, and tolls.

Now, ole Ace Tucker was a man of action and a gambling man. So, he spent twenty-five credits on a ticket to the nearest casino planet and used the rest to enter a high-stakes nebulacard tournament.

Eight hours later, he was the proud and improbable winner of the grand prize: a one-of-a-kind prototype Valdovian Ultra Space Freight Hauler smartship.

Ace spent the next ten years scratching out a meager living as a galactic cargo trucker. These days he worked the rock 'n' roll circuit as a roadie for Mustache Supernova, the greatest band in the known galaxy.

Yes, sir. In all his days, Ace thought he had pretty much seen it all.

But he hadn't seen anything yet.

Our story begins the night Ace Tucker and his best friend/business partner, Ivan Chimpanov, attended a swinging party at the palatial estate of famed galactic rock 'n' roll promoter, Sleazon Nebula.

Vibrant and raucous alien partygoers of all shapes and sizes milled about as Ace and Ivan sized up a man who was the spitting image of the one and only Elvis Presley.

"I dunno, Ivan," Ace said. "He sure looks like Elvis but what the hell would he be doing out here? Isn't he supposed to be dead?"

"Yeah!" Ivan said, drawing out the word to three syllables. "But there have always been rumors that he faked his death. It's possible that is him."

Ace narrowed his eyes and tilted his head as he tried to get a bead on the man. "Right, but... He could be a shapeshifter. You know as well as I do that odd lifeforms are part of the job. Remember that guy from the Large Kingdom of the Shiver who had no true physical form? He had some kinda low-level telepathy and would just take any physical shape he could cherry-pick out of your head."

"Riiiight," Ivan said. "That was the day you had just finished watching the first two seasons of Charlie's Angels for the umpteen millionth time!"

"Yup. That ole boy took the form of Farrah Fawcett. Man, that was one hell of a day!" Ace said and took a sip from his beer.

"All I'm saying is it could be Elvis, yeah?" Ivan said as he stared at the man, ignoring his own beer.

"I dunno, man," Ace said after he swallowed. "If it was Elvis why would he be poaching drinks all night? I've seen him steal, like, four glasses of bubbly from waiterbots when they weren't looking."

"Hang on, Ace!" Ivan said with a gasp. "He's coming over here!"

"Say there, mister," the man said. "Can I have one of them beers there? Thank you. Thank you very much."

"Excuse me?" Ace said as he tapped his index finger on his bottle of Dark Star beer. Tap, tap, tap. "What was that?"

Ace's physical appearance made him an easy mark, he guessed. He tended to stand out in a crowd. He wore simple denim jeans, a black Mustache Supernova t-shirt, and biker boots. His shoulder-length wavy dark hair was kept in check by a black snapback hat featuring an embroidered patch with the word "Ace" written out in fancy white script front and center.

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