By Dan and Bibby Rush
Gatchaman (c) 1972 by Tatsunoko Productions Japan, all rights respected. Fan fiction for the non-profit use by Anime fans. Not for monetary gain.
Rated: PG (Except when Joe becomes angry, then the rating's useless)
Utoland Aquarium for Citation Studies
"This was a great idea of yours Ken." Joe said as he closed the door of his Skyline and gave Ken Washio a mean look. " I could be out having a good time in town on my day off."
Ken smirked as he watched Ryu's van pull up in the parking lot. " Oh come on Joe. What were you really going to do today besides mall hop for chicks? Tune your engine? I wanted us to do something together for once and Jinpei had a good idea."
"Fish. We're here to look at fish Ken. At least at the mall you can go and scope out tits and ass."
"You can look at girls here too."
"Ken...you might be attracted to pre-teen girls but I'm not." Joe said with a wink as Ryu, Jun, and Jinpei hopped out of the old van behind him. " Say Ryu? When are you going to get a new car? That crazy van of yours should be declared obscene."
"Watch your mouth Joe. My van's a classic, a veteran of many awesome DN-5 concerts."
"Veteran of Vietnam is more descriptive. Look at the suspension guys." Joe said as he pointed to the dented lower lip of the van's body..." This truck was used by the NVA to haul rice down the Ho Chi Minh trail."
"Joe, stop being such a jack ass." Jun replied.
"Woo Hoo Onechan!" Jinpei cheered as he tossed the baseball he was holding in the air. Ryu caught it and stopped to look at it, much to the boy's complaints. " Give that back!"
"I'm not hurting it Jinpei." Ryu replied as he looked at the signature near the stitching. " Hey! This ball was signed by Matsatsumi Yoshi! Are you insane Jinpei?"
"It's my ball." Jinpei replied as he pulled it from Ryu's hands and hugged it.
"You should take better care of it Jinpei." Ken said with a raised finger. " A signed baseball is very valuable."
Jinpei pocketed the ball in his baseball jacket. " I know...but I just like to hold it. Seems wasteful to keep it in my shoebox."
The others decided it wasn't worth the time to try and make Jinpei understand. They all walked towards the aquarium entrance, stopping suddenly when Jinpei squealed at the site of a seal tank along the way. He pressed as much of his face into the glass case as he could to attract the seals as they swam slowly by.
"Hey Jinpei? If you press too much, your face will distort forever." Jun joked as the youngster pressed his lips and made faces. One baby seal stopped and bobbed in fascination at the creature on the other side.
"Oh great, the kid's in love." Joe snapped as Jinpei turned from the glass.
"Probably smarter than most of the women you date." The boy said with a smirk.
"Can I drop him in with the sharks Ken?" Joe asked Washio as he stood to get tickets for the team.
"No. You'll make the sharks sick."
Ryu gave off a small laugh before turning to look at a map of the large aquarium. " Did you guys know they have some killer whales here?"
"Whales?" Jinpei replied with a wide eyed face. " Cool!"
"Yeah. And they're kin to Ryu. Only a whale could put away more food than Ryu." Joe snipped. The pilot of the Phoenix command ship walked over and put his face before Joe's.
"Yes...and whales are also big enough to kick peoples face in."
"Now boys." Jun said like she was their mother. " Let's park the testosterone for the day and enjoy ourselves shall we?" She followed Ken through the doors of the aquarium as Jinpei walked between Joe and Ryu, throwing his ball in the air.
"Bet she doesn't last an hour before holding Aniki's hand."
"Bet they don't last five minutes before going off to get it on." Joe said with a smirk as he, Ryu, and Jinpei followed Ken and Jun from a distance. The inside of the aquarium was bathed in a rich blue haze as tanks full of exotic fish filled the walls around the team. Jinpei was his typical brattish annoying self as he spouted off factoids, most of his own creation, as he boisterously bugged the others.
"Isn't that cool Joe?" Jinpei said as he pushed his way through a pack of people and snuggled a glass view port to watch sharks cruising by him. " Man...they look just as mean as Joe no Aniki on a bad hair day! Of course...Joe always has bad hair days."
"Yeah...and you cause many of them." Joe replied. Jinpei just ignored him and turned his attentions to Ken and Jun who sat at the ledge of a window father down the path. The youngster chuckled to himself before doing a sort of dance stroll towards the almost silent couple. He arrived to see Jun having some sort of close conversation with Ken, her almost inaudible whispers feeding the boys curiosity. He stood before them, bobbing up and down on the balls of his feet.
"Ummm...whatcha two talking about?" Jinpei asked.
"Nothing that concerns you." Jun replied. " The Dolphin tank's just up the way, why don't you go up there?" She asked, waving a hand in that direction. Jinpei, however, didn't seem to care at the moment.
"You gonna kiss?" He asked her. This time, Ken intervened.
"Jinpei...go see the dolphins, they're really cool."
"But you two are gonna kiss right? As soon as I turn my back, you'll smooch. I don't wanna miss you and Aniki smooching."
Jun just huffed and stood up. " If we do or don't, it's none of your business. I didn't bring you here so you could spy on me. Now be a good boy and go see the dolphins or I'll give you a kiss you'll wish you didn't get. Understood?"
Jinpei got the message, somewhat insultingly as he frowned and walked up the path. Jun just shook her head and turned back to the window to watch a school of fish hover silently before her eyes. " Is he a lot of trouble to care for?" Ken asked with a smile.
"Only when he thinks he can get away with something." Jun replied. " He's starting to test my nerves. Happens every now and then when he thinks I'm abusing him."
"Abusing him?" Ken replied with a questioning face. " You don't hit him that hard do you?"
"Never. His idea of abuse is me keeping him on a short leash. He's like other kids his age Ken, he wants to do this and that and I tell him no. So he starts testing me and acting like a total brat. Too bad he keeps beating his head into a brick wall." Jun stopped talking until Joe and Ryu walked by as if they were oblivious to her and Ken sitting together. " What do you think? Am I doing things wrong with Jinpei?"
"No. Not that I can see. Then again, what do I know about raising kids?"
"I know a way you could find that out?" Jun joked.
"Don't even go there!" Ken replied. " I'd rather read books on it first."
Jinpei quickly forgot his sister's cold shoulder as he came up from the exhibition tunnel and walked along the railing of the dolphin tank. He stopped to look over the edge, watching the streamlined shapes speeding through the water, flipping near the walls, and flying back and forth in playful displays. It gave the youngster an idea as he pulled his baseball from a jacket pocket and dangled it over the glass covered rail in a teasing display.
"Veep, veep...here boy! Nice Dolphins! Come get the baseball!" Jinpei smiled and gasped as a bottlenose came rocketing from below and flew up towards the ball. Jinpei quickly pulled his arm back just as the animal almost had the ball in his mouth. The dolphin fell back with a loud splash, much to the excitement that the clapping Jinpei enjoyed. He did it again, dangling the ball with two fingers as the same dolphin came at him once more. Again he pulled the ball back and watched the dolphin crash back into the water. Jinpei was about to do it again when Joe's voice interrupted him from behind.
"Jinpei? What are you doing?"
"I'm playing with a dolphin. I think it wants my ball." Jinpei pointed to his hand that was still sticking over the glass rail. As Joe and Ryu watched with anticipated humor, the dolphin came back. This time, Jinpei didn't pay enough attention to remember that his arm was still sticking far enough over the glass to offer the dolphin a good target. Jinpei felt his hand pushed into the air and the emptiness that comes when a baseball suddenly leaves your grasp. He turned around just in time to watch his ball fall into the water and the boy's eyes went wide with disbelief. " Aaaaaaah!"
The dolphin seemed to understand the whole affair. It came up to carefully balance the baseball on the tip of its nose and made a series of blabbing noises and clicks as if it was taunting the boy now trying to climb over the railing above. Joe grabbed Jinpei before he had a chance to leap into the tank after the laughing dolphin. " You stupid fish! Gimme back my ball!" Jinpei screamed as he struggled in Joe's arms. " Let me go Joe! I'll kick that dolphins ass!"
"Jinpei! Watch your language!" Jun shouted as she came up behind Joe and gave Jinpei a slight slap in the face to remind him of his loose lips. " What are you screaming at?"
"That stupid dolphin! Its got my baseball Onechan!" Jinpei pointed to the animal as it bobbed up and down in the water in full view of the whole team.
"You must have been teasing it." Jun snapped. " Serves you right."
"But I want my ball baaaaaaaack!" Jinpei screamed and almost started to cry as Ken walked up and ordered Joe to let him go.
"Jinpei, let me get it back." Ken said as he patted the tear eyed boy on the back. Jinpei smiled and started to snicker at the dolphin below.
"Stupid dolphin, you're in big trouble now. Show him who's boss Aniki!" Jinpei watched Ken hop over the railing and land on the platform below that was reserved for the dolphin trainers.
"Now observe everyone. This is how you make friends with dolphins." Ken said with great confidence as he found a bucket of fish in an ice cooler and stood over the edge of the platform with a large fish dangling from his hand. Joe seemed of less confidence in Ken's ability when he turned to Ryu with his wallet open.
"Five thousand yen says he gets into trouble." Joe remarked as he pulled the 5k bill from his wallet. " Hey Ken? Are you sure you know what you're doing?"
"Just watch! I'm a pro at the old switch game." Ken replied as he watched the bullet like form rocket from the water, flip the ball in the air, grab the fish, recover the ball, and return to douse the Eagle leader all in one fluid motion. Ken was soaked and Joe couldn't help but laugh.
"You were saying? I thought you were a pro?"
"How would you like to come down here Joe?" Ken said with a hint of anger in his voice.
"He's getting mad." Joe whispered to Ryu as he watched Ken make another go at snatching the ball from the dolphin. This time it worked as Ken quickly snatched the ball before the dolphin could recover from taking the fish. There he was...holding the ball in triumph and bowing slightly at Jinpei's cheers when the dolphin came back and he wasn't going to take losing his playtoy lying down.
"Watch out Aniki!" Jinpei yelped as the dolphin snatched the ball in his teeth and pulled both ball and Ken into the tank with a loud splash.
"Now there...is an example of professionalism!" Joe said with a false look of surprise. He started clapping loudly, attracting other people to look into the tank as Ken climbed out of the water. Washio turned about and gave his nemesis step-brother the finger.
"What was that Ken? Your I.Q?"
"That dolphin's still got my ball!" Jinpei snarled as he tried once more to hop the railing and was roughly pulled back by his older sister. " DAM IT! I WANT MY BALL!"
Ken reassured the angry youth as he began stalking the dolphin along the length of the pool. " Ok Mister dolphin, you want a fight? You're going to have one." Ken went back to the bucket of fish and stood at the edge of the pool with half the munchy morsel submerged in the tank. " Here....fishy, fishy, fish! Come get the nice smelt."
"Looks more like a tuna to me Ken!" Ryu shouted from above.
"Tuna, smelt, whatever...just as long as he comes up here!" Ken yelled back. Sure enough, the dolphin did come after the fish. Quickly, Ken pulled it from the water and tricked the animal into beaching himself on the platform where he started blabbing and clicking for the fish.
"Look! You want this? Well give me the ball and you can have it." Said Ken as he pointed to the fish in his hand. The Dolphin seemed to understand as it dropped the ball to the floor and nodded in approval. Ken had no sooner placed the fish in its mouth and gotten hold of the baseball when the dolphin clamped its powerful mouth over one leg and jerked Ken back into the pool. The whole scene caused an explosion of laughter from above, especially from Joe who was now enwrapped in taunting Ken to no end.
"Hey Ken! I think it loves you!" Joe yelled as he leaned over the railing. Ryu Nakanishi couldn't help but join in the fun of the moment.
"So when's the wedding Ken?" The big pilot asked as he blew kisses at Ken who floated amoung his antagonist. Every few moments, the dolphin would spash Ken or play just out of reach with the ball balanced on the tip of it's nose.
"Ryu? How about I come up there and throw you in?"
"Do you want the Hernia that goes with trying?" Ryu answered back. To everyone else but Jinpei, the whole chain of events was just plain funny. The young boy, however, was beyond being angry and he finally proved it when he kicked Jun in the shin and vaulted over the railing.
"Jinpei! You little!" Jun screamed as she watched the boy go under the water and disappear behind a rock formation and came back out dressed in his Swallow suit. People watching the whole event in the tunnel that ran next to the tank were stunned to see a Gatchaman ninja latch onto one of the bottle-nosed dolphins and get pulled all around the tank, shouting curses and reaching for a baseball that the animal was pushing.
"Cough!...Give me!...cough, cough....my baseball....cough....you scumbag!" Jinpei was screaming and swearing up a storm much to Ken's displeasure. To his surprise, Ryu, Jun, and Joe were trying to get away from each other up on the main walkway, as if to say..." Don't look at us, we have nothing to do with those two idiots."
Ken snarled at Jinpei as he came by on the dolphins back. " Sorry Aniki but I want my ball!"
"You'll be sorry when Jun blisters your ass! Get out of here now and get back in civies!"
"But I almost got my ball!" Jinpei replied as he felt the dolphin pick up a burst of speed. Jun watched in amazement as the animal launched itself, and its unwanted passenger, over a retaining wall and into another pool. Jinpei rolled from its back and fell into the water, allowing the dolphin to happily vault back over into its own pool...minus the baseball.
"Did you see that?" Jun said as she held Joe. " I'm gonna kill him. I'm gonna use a wooden spoon on his butt, I swear he's dead."
"Alright...alright." Joe said as he leaned away from Jun's banter. " How about we blow him up and save us all the trouble?"
"To quick." Jun answered back. " I want the little terrorist to suffer."
Jinpei missed his sister's death dealing snarls as he came back up to the surface of the water and saw the sign posted on a large access gate. " Warning...you are in the tank with Nankachomp the Orcha...she does not like visitors...except when they're dinner?" Jinpei gulped, turned about, and came face to face with a big black eye and very big teeth.
"Uh.....hello? AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH OOOOOONEEEEEECHAN!" Jinpei started swimming for his life as Nankachomp slowly followed him around the tank. Ken heard the boys screams and quickly ran for the edge of the other enclosure, vaulted the access gate, and saw Jinpei swimming from a very large, but playful looking Killer Whale.
"Shit! Jinpei? Get out of the tank!"
"I can't! Help me Aniki! She's gonna eat me and I don't taste very good!" Jinpei watched the whale submerge below him and started to cry as Ken called out for Joe.
"JOE! I NEED YOUR CABLE GUN!"
"Catch it Ken!" Joe replied as he threw his weapon end over end into Ken's hands. He was about to aim the gun when Jinpei suddenly went flying from the water! The Orcha had come up from underneath and flipped the boy out of the pool with his tail. Jinpei flipped end over end to a crash landing in another tank. He felt the hard impact of ice as he slipped across the surface of a floating block and slid to a stop....
Before a very big polar bear. "
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!" Jinpei screamed and shook as the bear stood up on its hind legs and gave out a big bear roar from its tooth filled maw. It seemed it would rip Jinpei to shreds before Ken could get to him and as he climbed over another wall, the bear grabbed Jinpei by the cape and pulled him into a cave.
"Ken!" Jun cried out in tears as Ken made a dash for the cave entrance. He peaked inside, expecting to see Jinpei chewed up on the floor but was surprised when he saw the boy sitting in a corner with the polar bear sitting before him.
"Jinpei? Get out of there." Ken called.
"I can't." Jinpei replied shivering. " It took my candy and it won't let me out....Ken....I'm scared!"
"The brave Swallow scared? Look...I'm going to fire the cable gun dart right across your face. Grab the line and I'll pull you out before that bear even knew what hit him." Ken was ready to fire his shot when someone smacked him across the head.
"What do you think you're doing?" A green uniformed girl asked as he grabbed the cable gun.
"Uh...saving that kid in there. He's in big danger."
"Danger my foot." She said back. The girl whistled with her fingers and called the bear. " Cindy? Come out here right now and stop bothering that kid?" The woman beckoned the polar bear out of the cave, past a hand that petted it as if it were a pet, and back into the tank. " There...now you can get your little friend. I have a good mind to report both of you to the police for this."
Ken seemed taken by the seriousness of this young girl. " I would never have gone through this trouble had your dolphin given back this baseball in the first place." Ken replied as he held the ball in his hands. The girl took it from him and threw it back into the dolphin tank, much to the sudden anger of the young swallow.
"Why did you do that?" asked Jinpei. The girl took the two of them back to the dolphin tank and called for her favorite dolphin.
"To teach you nuckleheads a lesson. You don't go bossing my dolphins around like you did." She said as the dolphin came back up and blabbed happily at her. " Raya? Get the baseball please?" She pointed to the baseball and watched as the Dolphin retrieved it and pushed it back onto the dock. " See? Just say please and they'll do what you want."
The girl left Ken rather dumbstruck as Jinpei threw the ball back into the water and called for Raya. " Can I have my ball please?" he asked. Sure enough, the dolphin responded and handed Jinpei back his baseball. " Hmph...learn something every day huh Aniki?" Jinpei asked Ken as the Eagle leader brooded on an overturned bucket. eyeing one of the larger fish on the ground, Ken nodded.
"You know Jinpei, your right? We do learn something every day. In fact, you're about to learn something new..."
"Oh yeah? What Aniki?"
"What it's like to be spanked with a tuna!" Ken reached for the boy and ended up in the pool once more as Ken chased him with the Tuna in his hand.
"ONECHAN! HELP ME! KEN'S GONNA SPANK ME WITH A TUNA!"
"WELL! YOU ALWAYS SAID LEARNING NEW THINGS SOMETIMES HURTS!"