For some reason, I think of that when working on my space pirates novel (still no title). It's not quite as witty and funny as the goofy puppets, but I'm having fun with it. The beginning was posted near the first part of May (I can hear the television voice-over narration: "Previously, on Space Pirates"), and here's installment number two ("And now, on Space Pirates").
c. 2008, Keanan Brand
Smiling, Kristoff stood a moment longer in the crow’s nest, a low-profile turret above the crew deck, and stared out into black, starlit space. He’d rather be here than anywhere.
Descending the ladder to the deck, he caught the low intense sounds of voices in muffled argument. Great. Corrigan and Wyatt, or Corrigan and Alerio, or Corrigan and anyone else.
No. From the next level down. The passenger cabins. Already?
He strode along the crew deck and clattered down the companionway, finger-combing his hair and tucking in his shirt as he went. Since negotiating for cargo, he hadn’t considered trivial things like a shower and a clean shirt. Hope nobody’s allergic to stink.
Down the last step, around a right angle, and he entered the passenger quarters. Two men, faces red, stood nose to nose and chest to chest.
“You will not speak to her, you will not look at her, you will not be in the same room with her—”
“She’s a free woman!”
“She’s not a crate of cargo!”
“Gentlemen.” Kristoff gripped the men by their shoulders and smiled, not happily. "This is a freighter first and a pleasure cruiser a distant second, but we aim to serve our guests. We can’t do that if they don’t behave. Now, there’s a corner of the cargo deck where you can beat each other to a squishy pulp, but you will not block the passage, and my crew will not clean up the blood.”
The belligerent idiot “owner” of the unnamed woman tried to pull away from Kristoff’s grasp, but without success. “Who are you?”
“Helmer Kristoff, captain of this fine vessel.”
“Fine vessel?” the idiot sneered. “More like a death trap.”
The lover grabbed the idiot by the shirtfront. “A death trap, and you brought her here anyway? You son of a—”
The idiot threw a punch. It landed poorly, skimming the other man’s cheek. The lover responded with a knee to the groin.
Kristoff grabbed fistfuls of the combatants’ shirts behind their necks, and dragged them along the passage, through the common room, through the guest galley—where he almost lost his grip on the struggling men—then down the companionway to the cargo deck, the idiot and the lover trading curses and half-landed blows, most of which struck Kristoff, if they struck anyone.
Corrigan looked up, wiping his hands on a greasy rag. “Want help with that?”
“You can lock the cage, as soon as I toss ‘em in.”
Slapping his palm with a business-size wrench, Corrigan grinned.
The lover flailed at the idiot, who flailed back. Kristoff pushed them inside the cage. Just as Corrigan grabbed the door, Kristoff saw a blur out of the corner of his eye.
Pain exploded in his head. Comets and constellations whirled before him—then all was black space.