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Knock-down, Drag-out

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“Wedge, come on, we've got trouble.”

Luke's face appears in the office doorway just long enough to get the words out before he's gone again, but Wedge is already on his feet following after him. He catches up at the end of the corridor, and before he can ask, he hears the shouts. Moments later, they're entering the hanger, and the scene comes into view.

Most of the pilots of Rogue Squadron and a few of their fellows from others are gathered around in a circle, some cheering, some booing, some just staring. Wedge and Luke are halfway across the floor before someone shifts and he catches a glimpse of what's in their midst – Col Takbright and Tycho Celchu, ruffled and bloodied and in the middle of a fistfight.

Wedge's first reaction is a frisson of annoyance. No matter what started this, their pilots should know better, be more mature. His second is chagrin. As XO he should have caught whatever this is and dealt with it long before it ever had a chance to distract Luke.

“Takbright! Celchu!” Luke barks, the Commander in his tone snapping the entire squadron to attention as he and Wedge shoulder their way between them.

Distracted, the combatants pause, and the newcomers take advantage. Luke gets an arm across Tycho's chest as Wedge takes hold of the back of the neck of Col's flight suit, and they drag the two apart.

Wedge gives Col his best disapproving officer glare, ignoring the cut dripping blood nearly into his right eye and the snarl on his look-alike's face.

“Everyone else can go back to your business,” Luke says, quieter now but no less stern. “Unless you all want a lecture.”

There's some grumbling as the rest of the pilots disperse.

Wedge raises an eyebrow at Col, a silent If I let go are you going to stay where you are? Col jerks a little nod, decidedly unhappy, and Wedge unhands him, stepping back and crossing his arms.

“What happened?” Wedge asks.

“All I did was ask where he was from,” Col says petulantly. “And when he said Alderaan, I said that's surprising since aren't they all supposed to be pacifists-”

Tycho actually growls at that, struggling against Luke's hold.

“Cool it,” the Commander snaps, getting his hands on the newest Rogue's chest and pushing him back. “I have no problem letting both of you cool your heels in the brig if I have to.”

Tycho stills, but his eyes spit fire. “If the Empire destroyed your planet,” he says icily, every word aimed like a blow, “you'd want to kill them all too.”

“You've just made my point,” Luke cuts in before Col can shoot back. “We're all here to fight the Empire, not each other.” He gives Tycho a hard look. “Flight Officer Celchu, you're new to both the Rebellion and this squadron. Is this the kind of impression you're trying to make?”

Tycho's fighting stance finally eases, and his gaze drops as he swallows. “No, sir.”

Luke turns on Col. “And you, Takbright, this is how you're welcoming new recruits?”

“But, Luke, I-”

Luke throws up a hand. “Save it.”

Wedge knows neither of them wants to assume what happened since they didn't see the initial confrontation, but he and Luke are also both thinking the same thing: Col enjoys needling people. They've all seen it firsthand. Likely the conversation wasn't as simple as he claimed. And, even in the little time they've known him, they've become familiar with Tycho's quick temper. Neither of them can be entirely blameless, regardless of who threw the first punch.

Col is clearly still angry, but he clamps his mouth shut.

“I'm not going to make you apologize to each other,” Luke goes on. “I'm not your mother. You don't have to be friends, but you are comrades. Act like it. You have any more problems, you solve it like adults, not with your fists. You absolutely need Wedge or me to intervene, fine, but this doesn't happen again.”

“Yes, sir,” Col and Tycho say together, then glance at each other uneasily.

Luke looks between them for another moment, then nods. “All right, then we're done here. As you were.”

He turns on his heel, leaving two bewildered pilots standing behind him and Wedge taking long strides to catch up.

“We're not going to punish them?”

“Sometimes people need to get this stuff out of their systems,” Luke says. “I don't think it will happen again.”

“You're the boss.” Wedge chuckles. “You definitely made a show of that.”

They turn the corner back toward the office, and Luke grins at him, that sunny expression that makes him look like just a kid from Tatooine, not anyone's commander. “Glad that came across as well I hoped it would.”