The princess pounded on the door, demanding she be let out, but G.E.M. ignored her, walking away.
As he walked off, Pinky came up beside him. "Please tell me you were not serious about all those things you said!" she told her captain. "I could see handing her back to her Kingdom, but killing her? Throwing her into the Void?"
"I said I'd do it if she was lying," he told her, not looking her way. "I did promise to get her to Hǔ Bǎi Hé if she was telling the truth. We'd just have to hand her over to the Zǐ Sè Dēng Pào. They have ties to the Hǔ Bǎi Hé government."
Pinky nodded, understanding her captain's decision on giving the Princess to the Zǐ Sè Dēng Pào to escort her. "If there is anyone that can get the princess safely into Hǔ Bǎi Hé, it's them."
"That's only if she is telling the truth," G.E.M. pointed out to her as they entered the bridge.
The door opened, showing a pathway with two sets of stairs going down to a lower level on each side. The pathway lead to a rotating armchair that was clearly for the Captain, wide enough for just one person to walk across. The lower level had four seats.
Two seats faced forward, facing out the window, as well as at several screens that allowed them to see a few blind spots. In the pilot seat, Sunshine held tight to the controls, steering smoothly through the blue skies.
The copilot was a middle-age man with salt and pepper hair. He didn't wear the recognizable coat of the crew, but a flannel shirt, blue overalls, and steel toe work boots. Around his waist was a tool belt that held a hammer, wrench, screwdriver, and other tools a mechanic would need.
On the right side was a currently empty seat that looked over a screen that monitored the weather readings in the area.
One seat faced the left wall that had a radar screen being watched by a woman that looked like May, but a few years older, scanning for possible ships and enemies. Her glasses hung on her face, with a rope going around it to keep it from falling to the floor if it ever came off, and her hair was in a bun as well. She wore a doctor's coat, but it was green instead of white, and it had the Green Coats symbol on the left chest. Under the coat was a casual navy-blue dress with the skirt stopping at her knees, ending with flat, slip-on shoes. She looked over at G.E.M. "Welcome back Captain." She greeted, giving a sly, seductive smile.
"No time April." G.E.M. told her, while walking over to his chair. Above the windshield was a flat screen.
Pinky headed down the stairs to the lower section.
"Sunshine," G.E.M. called his name, as he sat in his chair. "You got some explaining to do."
Sunshine turned to look at his captain, as Pinky went over to take his place. "What's wrong?"
G.E.M. didn't say anything, looking over at Pinky to speak. "Your checking of the guest list was incomplete. We ended up getting a stowaway."
"What?" Sunshine shouted in shock. "There is no way I messed up! I triple checked the guest list, passenger list, and crew."
"She said she was smuggled onto the ship, but now she's our problem," G.E.M. explained, "And she's a big problem."
"What are you talking about Captain?" Sunshine asked.
G.E.M. looked over at the middle-aged mechanic. "Victor, you are relieved of your duty here. You can go and get some rest, or something to eat."
Victor got out of the copilot seat and addressed his captain. "Thanks Captain, I'll go check on the engines, make sure they are in working order." With that, Victor headed off the bridge.
G.E.M. turned his attention back to Sunshine. "I need you to look into any reports from Valen. Look up anything you can find dealing with Princess Zephyrus, King Xenos, and Yves."
"Why do you want me to look up the royal Valen family?" Sunshine asked.
"Just do it." G.E.M. demanded, as Sunshine sat down. "See if you can find anything about a coup."
Sunshine rapidly typed away at his keyboard, quickly finding something for all of them to see. "No news about any coup, Captain," Sunshine told him, "but I have learned that King Xenos is dead."
"Dead?" G.E.M. repeated.
"It appears he was found dead in his bed this morning," Sunshine explained, pulling an article up on the main screen for them all to see. "There's no word about foul play, but they are considering all possibilities."
"Maybe this is the coup Zephyrus spoke of," Pinky suggested, looking over at G.E.M. "If they do not know what killed the king, they could blame anyone or anything they want."
"Including us if they learn we have the Princess," G.E.M. pointed out to them. "Sunshine, what can you find on this Yves?"
"Give me a minute," Sunshine told him, punching away at the keyboard at a blinding rate. "I got it." He pulled up a picture of a massively tall man in about his thirties. The picture showed him in royal attire with metals all over his chest. His hair was long, reaching down his mid-back, with the left side of his hair being pure bleach blond, and the right side was blacker than a starless night. Upon his back was a massive sword that was not in any scabbard, but the blade stood out for all to see.
"It says here he was born to a single mother with no record of who the father is," Sunshine read up on Yves. "Holy cow! He's over 7 feet tall!"
Everyone on the bridge snapped their heads over to look at him in complete shock. "There's no way!" Pinky shouted.
"It's real," Sunshine told them, pulling up a photo of Yves standing next to a statue of a man holding an open book and a feather pen, which showed them at about equal high. "That's called the Recorder, after a Romek god that looks over the world and records everything that happens. It was made by Olivier Poulin and stands at seven feet exact."
"Damn!" G.E.M. cursed, "He is massive! What's that sword on his back?" He pointed at Yves' weapon.
"That's the…" Sunshine drew out, as he searched. "Dragger another Romek god, but of the dead this time, that would drag the souls of the damned and those that tried to escape it down to face their judgement."
"Got to admit, the guy sure knows how to name his blade," G.E.M. admired.
"There is also a news feed that has just gone out from Yves about the King's death," Sunshine announced, throwing it up on the main screen, and playing it as Yves starting his speech.
"My fellow countrymen of Valen," Yves addressed them, clearly talking to the people of Valen. "It saddens me to say that King Xenos was found dead this morning in his bed."
The entire audience gasped at the news of their King's passing.
"A servant found the King laying in his bed not breathing, when bringing him his breakfast." Yves continued to explain to the crowd. "Due to the King's failing health and age, the servant walked into his room. When she got no response from him, she thought he was still sleeping and went over to wake him. She softly pulled the covers off and tried to wake him. When she could not wake him, she started to worry and checked his pulse."
"How did the King die?" A patron from the crowd shouted out to him.
"We do not know at this time, but we are looking into it." Yves answered them. "We are hoping that God peacefully took the King in the night."
"Where is the Princess?" a reporter asked him.
Yves glared over at him. "I am told she is currently on a cruise ship." Yves addressed him, "We are currently trying to contact them."
"What will happen now that the King is dead?" another reporter asked him.
"The Princess is still too young to take the throne at this time," Yves explained. "As such, the royal court will handle all issues of the Kingdom till Princess Zephyrus comes of age. If you excuse me, I need to get back to my duties and make sure the Kingdom is stable."
The video ended, with GEM, Pinky, April and Sunshine looking at each other. "Boss?" Sunshine asked him. "Does this stowaway happen to be a little girl?"
G.E.M. sighed, cracking an unhappy smile at Sunshine. "Yeah Sunshine. We accidently kidnapped Princess Zephyrus."
"How in the world did you do it Captain?" April asked him, either out of confusion, fear, or admiration.
"She was hiding in one of the chests in the cargo bay okay?" G.E.M. shot up from his seat, speaking loudly. "How long ago was that new report broadcasted?"
Sunshine quickly turned back, checking the timestamp. "About two hours."
"Pinky!" He shouted out to his first mate. "Get us out of here…"
Before he could finish, alarms started to go off, and lights flashing.
April turned back to the radar screen. "We have several Valen warships coming our way!"
"Crap!" G.E.M. cursed. "We need to get out of here." He pressed a button on his chair, opening the ships speakers. "Boomer! We need you on the bridge right away!"
"I'll try to get us in the clouds!" Pinky shouted, steering the ship.
"I'll start working on jamming their radar!" Sunshine added, punching away at his keyboard.
G.E.M. sat back in his chair, gripping the arms. "It's too bad the gods are not real. Cause we could really use their help right now."