From your corner at the Captain’s table you watched the Ravagers bustling about the mess hall getting their breakfast. Most were getting ready to start their day and talking about the next mission they were getting ready for. Others were coming off third watch and just looking to get something in their bellies before retiring to their individual racks. Gone were the days of the crew sleeping in one big pile. On the new Eclector each crew member had their own rack even if they shared quarters. Kraglin said it kept things calmer and the crew got more sleep at night without all the yelling and fighting.
You honestly thought he was exaggerating. Maybe the crew didn’t sleep in a big pile anymore but the Ravagers you worked with couldn’t be so different from the old crew. After all a Ravager was a Ravager. They were Space Pirates after all. Most of them were quiet and went about their work without complaint. Some were rowdy on occasion, but as soon as Yondu or Kraglin uttered a word they all fell into line. The Ravagers had a code, there were rules on the ship, and Yondu and Kraglin held them to it. How the old crew could have been so different you just honestly couldn’t understand.
Oddly enough you had expected outer space to be scarier. More dangerous. It really wasn’t. The worst thing you seemed to be in danger of most days was tripping over one of Yondu’s knick knacks in your shared cabin. Kraglin, Yondu, and Peter all told stories of defeating Ronan, Ego, and Thanos but truthfully you wondered if perhaps much of it was embellished to impress you. After all, if an all-powerful being like any one of them had actually existed none of you would be here now. Frankly, you thought you were in more danger on Terra from the depravity of society in general then you’d ever be in outer space as a Ravager. Yondu was still determined to keep you on a short leash so you didn’t get hurt though. It was amusing to say the least. Frankly you thought his overprotective tendencies were just because he wasn’t used to having a significant other by his side every day.
As you mused over what you believed to be the relative safety of outer space with your spoon cupped over your tongue someone sat down to your right. Turning your head you realized Yondu was sitting next to you with his own breakfast in front of him and he was giving you a curious look.
“Ya got yer head in the stars again Darlin’?” He picked up your other hand and pressed a kiss to the back of it before he started digging into whatever was in his bowl. Some of it seemed to be wiggling.
You cringed at his enthusiasm over his ‘meal’ and shook your head. “No. Well, not really. I was just thinking about how overprotective you can be.”
He paused with a spoonful of something that was definitely wiggling halfway to his mouth and looked at you. You encouraged your stomach to return to where it belonged when he set the spoon back in his bowl as he turned to face you fully. “Darlin’ I ain’t perfect, but I’m tryin’ my hardest ta do everythin’ I can ta keep ya safe.”
Rolling your eyes you snickered and spooned more of your oatmeal out of your bowl. “Yondu I love you, but you’re seriously like an overprotective father sitting on his porch cleaning his shotgun when his daughter’s boyfriend comes to take her on a date.”
“She’s saying you’re smothering her Dad.” Peter sat down across from you with a bowl of oatmeal of his own. You’d learned early on to pay attention to what he ate.
“That so?” Yondu looked between you and Peter with narrowed eyes before he focused on you. “Darlin’ yer from Terra, things there ain’t like out here.”
Pointing your spoon toward Peter whos eyes widened as he stuck some of his oatmeal in his mouth you looked back over to Yondu. “Peter’s from Terra.”
“Good point.” Peter offered between mouthfuls.
Yondu drummed his fingers on the table in front of his bowl. “Peter grew up out here, not on yer Terra.”
The man in question nodded. “Also a good point.”
“Not helping, thanks though Peter.” You kissed Yondu’s cheek and backed away when he lifted his spoon to his mouth again. “I just think it’s cute how you think I’m in more danger out there than I was on Terra.”
At that Peter choked. “Dude, do you know how many times we’ve almost died?” The look on Peter’s face and the way Yondu kept his eyes on his bowl told you something had definitely happened that they hadn’t told you about.
“Darlin’ I love ya, and that means I’m gonna do whatever I gotta in order ta keep ya safe. Restrictin’ ya ta missions that ain’t dangerous is one of those things. End of discussion.”
“Yes dear.” You finished the last bite of your oatmeal and pressed a kiss to Yondu’s head next to his implant which flashed red at your touch. “I have work to do.”
“Tha’s Captain.” Yondu muttered to his bowl.
“Sir yes sir!”
“I think she’s mocking you.” Peter offered around a mouthful.
“I swear boy, I shoulda eaten ya when ya’s little.” Youdu’s ruby eyes fixed on Peter until the younger man made that ‘pssssshhhhh’ sound he seemed so fond of.
“Ha ha, that’s always been an empty threat and you know it.”
“Nah, when ya’s little ya didn’t have enough meat on yer bones. Now ya got some muscle and fat.” Yondu pressed his lips together to keep the smile off his face but when Peter looked down at his middle Yondu couldn’t help but chuckle at the indignant look his boy shot him. He’d finished his breakfast and stood to take his bowl to the dish collector.
“I am not getting fat!”
“Ya keep tellin’ yerself that son. Long as Greenie’s happy with ya I’m pretty sure yer okay.” He was laughing at that point and gave Peter’s shoulder and affectionate squeeze before leaving him to stew over his slightly softer middle.
You knew Yondu was going to be aggravated but you didn’t have any choice. Machal had been assigned as Navigator for the mission but he’d come down with some odd kind of digestive issue unique to Kylorians and was in Med Bay. As the Lead Navigator it was up to you to find a replacement and none of the other Navigators knew the flight paths or star charts for this particular mission so it fell to you. When Peter and Kraglin saw you walk into the M ship bay they both went wide eyed and made their way to the Benatar and Glasgow respectively. Yondu made his way up into the pilot box of the Reaper and scowled when he saw you sitting in the co-pilot’s chair.
“Darlin’, I love ya an’ all, but what the flack are ya doin’ here?” He sat down heavily in the pilot’s chair and pulled up the holoscreen to ready his ship for takeoff.
“Machal is in Med Bay and I was the only other Navigator who knows the flight path and star charts you need for this mission.” You pulled up your own holoscreen and reviewed the flight path and sent it over to Kraglin and Peter’s ships.
Yondu had his jaw jutted forward and his implant was flashing. “You. Are. Stayin’. On. This. Ship.” He made sure to clearly enunciate each word as if you couldn’t understand him.
Rolling your eyes you just shook your head. “Yondu stop being such a worry wart. I’ll be fine. I can take care of myself.” You patted your blaster on the side of your hip.
He turned to face you then, with a very serious look on his face, one you hadn’t seen before and it was laced with just a little bit of fear. That concerned you just a little bit. “If ya have ta use that blaster it’s already too late. I’m damn serious when I tell ya ta stay on this ship. Peter ain’t bringin’ Gamora along fer the same damn reason I didn’t want ya here.”
“I promise, I won’t leave the ship.” You reassured him but his implant still flashed letting you know how angry he was. “Do you think I’d be upset with you for whatever this job is? Is that what’s going on?”
“Wha?” His expression when he looked at you was puzzled but his tone was still angry. “That ain’t got nothin’ ta do with it. This is dangerous. We’re gonna be close ta Kree territory.”
You didn’t know much about the Kree. Just that they were a very rigid and militaristic race and Yondu seemed to hate them. Reaching over you put your hand on his forearm and he placed his other hand, which you noted was shaking slightly, over top of yours. “Yondu, I promise. I’ll be fine.”
His ruby eyes held yours a moment and he squeezed your hand before turning back to his holoscreen.
Yondu was madder than he’d been since Taserface had mutinied and spaced Yondu’s original loyal crew. The mission was a bust and they were fighting their way through a ruins on the outskirts of a highly populated city. Kraglin’s co-pilot was lost, killed when several Kree ambushed them in the ruins while they were looking for the Celestial Dagger that was supposed to be secured there. One of the first things the bastards did was to fire at his implant. They didn’t manage to destroy it like Nebula had but he couldn’t control his arrow and wouldn’t be able to until Rocket had a chance to fix it.
That alone made Yondu suspicious that the whole thing was a set up. The Kree had been looking for him for decades and since the Battle of Xandar they’d been trying a lot harder than they had in years past. Now he needed to figure out who set them up and got one of his new crew members killed. He would have to set up a meeting with Stakar to see if maybe they could put an end to this with the Kree once and for all. The four of them finally managed to take out the last of their pursuers and were able to slow down and catch their breath.
“You don’t think the Broker had anything to do with this do you?” Peter asked when they were just approaching the rise hiding their M ships.
“Nah, wouldn’t be good fer his business.” Yondu had considered the same thing and ruled it out just as quickly.
“Don’t mean that whoever asked fer that Dagger didn’t.” Kraglin looked over at Yondu and Peter meaningfully.
Before either of them could respond Yondu’s wrist com pinged. “Darlin’? We’re almost back ta the M ships.”
“Hurry Yondu.” You were speaking barely above a whisper and he had to strain to hear. “Two aliens I’ve never seen before came on board the ship. I killed one but the other one is looking for me.”
Yondu pulled his lips between his teeth, you sounded scared and that was something he had never heard in your voice before. “Hide Darlin’, wherever you can, hide and stay quiet.”
“I am, just hurry.” It sounded to his ears like you might have sobbed before ending the com.
He looked down at Rocket who motioned up toward Yondu’s implant. “Gimme a boost and lemme see if I can fix it now.”
Rocket climbed onto Yondu’s shoulder when he crouched down next to the raccoon and went to work trying to fix the implant while they jogged over the rise. When the M ships came into view they saw a small Necrocraft sitting there. Yondu was sure it was a set up now and all he could think of was how scared you sounded.
“Alright Blue, it don’t look pretty, but try your arrow.”
Yondu swept his duster back and whistled softly. The Yaka responded and came to attention next to his head. He whistled it back into its sheath and Rocket jumped back to the ground. He glanced to Peter and Kraglin who both had their blasters out and the four of them started ahead to the M ship. From outside the ship they could hear the Kree tearing things apart searching for you and Yondu just hoped your hiding place was secure.
“I know you’re in here little human, come out and I will send you to the slave pens rather than killing you.”
Yondu snarled and vowed to put his arrow through the Kree’s head for even suggesting sending you to that hell hole. When he heard a distinctly feminine squeal he started climbing up the ladder without any consideration to the noise he was making. At that point he didn’t care. The Kree had ahold of you and all he could think was he had to keep you safe. The others made their way up the ladder as quickly as they could and stopped behind Yondu.
The Kree stood in front of them, fist twisted in your hair with the neck of your jacket, and held you directly in front of them while he pointed a blaster to your back. Your eyes were wide and your hands were grabbing onto the Kree’s trying to regain control of the motion of your head. “Yondu Udonta. Is this yours?” He shook the hand holding your hair and Yondu heard your painful intake of breath.
“If ya hurt her again, it’ll be the last thing ya ever do.” Yondu bared his teeth and motioned the other three to stay back.
The Kree twisted his hand in your hair even tighter which made you cry out. “Udonta give yourself up or I will kill this human and take your other companions for the slave pens.”
Yondu’s eyes flicked between your terrified ones and the Kree’s face. “Darlin’ do ya trust me?”
A sharp pitched whistle sounded and Yondu’s arrow shot from his side and through the Kree’s skull. His hand dropped the blaster as he died but the one tangled in your hair didn’t let go and you were pulled down with him. You started screaming and pulled at your hair to try to get the dead Kree off of you.
Yondu rushed over and put his hands on your face until you opened your eyes and focused on him. “Darlin’ calm down, I got ya.” Your hands held onto his wrists in a death grip and you nodded frantically. “Okay, Darlin’ let me go so I can untangle you.”
Your hands let go of his wrists and he kept his eyes on yours hoping you wouldn’t panic again if he did. He untangled the Kree’s hand from your hair and helped you stand up once he extricated you. The others had already moved off to start cleaning up and locate the other Kree. You fell into his arms and he held you while you shook but at least you weren’t crying.
“I stayed on board the ship.”
“I know Darlin’.” He started to worry a little bit when you were quiet and he could feel your heart racing. His hands went to your shoulders and he leaned back to look at your face. You were chewing your lip.
“I’m sorry I doubted you Yondu.” Your eyes lifted to his and he felt you start to shake again. “I’ve never been so scared in my life.”
“Ya don’t have no reason ta apologize ta me.” He kissed the top of your head and pulled you back into his arms. “I’m just glad yer safe is all.”
“I killed that other blue one. With my blaster.” Your voice was barely above a whisper. “I’ve never killed anyone before.”
“I know, it’s okay. It was you or him. Ya did what ya had ta do in order ta survive.”
Your hands fisted the front of his duster and he felt you jerking on it. “I don’t want to do that again.”
Yondu sighed and rubbed his hands over your back. “I know. I promise ya, I’ll do everything I can ta make sure ya don’t have to ever again. But if ya ever do, don’t ya hesitate. Ya hear me Darlin’?”
“I won’t. I promise Yondu, I won’t.”
Yondu was thankful things hadn’t gone more wrong than they did or he might have lost the only woman he’d ever loved. He held you tighter to him and kissed the top of your head. For the next few weeks he held you a little closer when you slept and stared at you a little longer when you weren’t looking.
Fortunately for you, that was the one and only time you ever had to take a life. You never doubted him again when he told you something about life in space.