Two Green Lanterns Walked Into A Bar (Hal Ducked)

Author: Caia (caia_comica on LJ)
Recipient: Platinum Takahashi (nitrophilia on LJ)
Request: Guy Gardner (DC MISC) - I'd like to see something with him and Kyle (gen's fine)
Summary: Guy, Kyle, and a bar full of aliens. (Takes place in some nebulous time between the end of GL CORPS: RECHARGE and the RANN/THANAGAR WAR SPECIAL.)

It was your standard bar from one of the more cosmopolitan sectors--three or four species from the surrounding trade ways scattered around various varieties of barstools, chairs, booths, tanks, and other furniture that defied human terminology.

There was also a bar, of course. Complete with a barkeeper of the local variety (more or less humanoid, if rather purple), and the requisite variety of intoxicants to supply all the species likely to come through. And a few for species less likely to show up, like humans, two of whom walked into the door just at the moment.

Guy Gardner strode through the in his usual inimitable fashion. "Hey!" he yelled. "Give us some drinks!"

His companion gave him a long-suffering eye-roll and conjured up a elaborate and graceful barstool next to the three-legged green one Guy had conjured. If subtlety had been in the books, he wouldn't have been traveling with Gardner. "Do you have anything for humans? From Earth?"

The barkeeper eyed them. "We don't get those too often. I think there might be something compatible, let me check..."

At this point, Guy's ring decided to be helpful. "Earth-type humans ought to be compatible with all liquors from Z'nang, except those containing alloys of--"

Guy slapped it. "No one asked you! Damn rings, ever since the corps came back, they never shut up."

"Alloys of what?" asked the barkeeper.

"Oh, just give us both your best local brew. From the look of it, worst thing that'll happen is that we turn purple."

"Two pints of s'Twilla Horlena it is, then," said the barkeeper. "We accept currency from all over the local exchange region."

"No problem." Guy turned to Kyle. "Since I became LANTERN NUMBER ONE of the Corps Honor Guard, I'm gettin' an expense account for this!"

"And you haven't stopped gloating about it. Ever."

"You're jealous."

"Getting paid for hero-duty is wrong."

"Hey, I'm just letting the Guardians contribute a little more to this 'patrolling the universe' bit. By paying the best Green Lantern they've got!"

"So you did talk them into paying Hal too?"

"Oh, shaddup."

The drinks arrived. They were an unnatural-for-earth chartreuse, and bubbled. "Ring," asked Guy, "Is this going to kill us?"

"Fermented leaf of..."

"YES or NO?"

"No, but..."

"Perfect." He tilted his head back and swallowed.

Kyle gave him the "why did they Guardians ever pick (much less PAY?) that?" look and watched.

"Excuse me," said a rainbow-colored, rather star-fished-shaped alien who had come up and sat on Kyle's other side. "Are you, in fact, Green Lanterns from Earth?"

Kyle looked around. All around him, there was a tremor in the crowd, as various sorts of aliens looked away, whispered, and changed conversation topics--except for the few who stared. "Yes, we are. I'm Kyle Rayner, and he's Guy Gardner."

"Just wondering," said the starfish, and seemed ready to leave it at that. The alien on its other side, however, prodded it and whispered in a tentacle. With a shrug of sorts, it turned back and asked, "Which one of you destroyed Xanshi and which one of you destroyed the Corps?"

"Um, neither of us," said Kyle. "Those were both other Green Lanterns, and neither of them, meant to, exactly." He wondered if he was going to have to explain the whole Parallax thing, and hoped he wouldn't; he barely understood it himself.

Fortunately or unfortunately, Guy, not having been killed by the s'Twilla Horlena, intervened. "I go to another galaxy, and they still confuse me with Jordan." He looked a little drunk already, but with Guy, it could be hard to tell.

"Don't worry, they may have been confusing you with Stewart," commented Kyle. Teasing Guy about Hal was almost second nature at this point--it was so easy.

"Ignore him, he's the rookie." Guy leaned across Kyle. "The Earth GLs who don't destroy planets or try to destroy universes, atcher service!"

The bar as a whole, as this got conveyed and translated, looked slightly relieved and more than a little disappointed (Guy's ring would have glossed their body language for him, but it was under repeated orders to SHUT THE FUCK UP).

The starfish, however, still looked suspicious. "You know this Jordan and this Stewart? They are your kind?"

"Hey, are you acquainted with Starro the Conqueror? I see just a tad bit of family resemblance."

The entire bar performed the species-appropriate version of uproarious laughter at that one.

"Distantly," said the starfish. "His species diverged from mine many millions of years before you humans were ever heard of. He has closer relatives on Earth, or so they tell me."

"Too bad. I was hoping for some excitement here..."

"...but our people do have some of the same talents..."

"Hey, hey," said Kyle. "Break it up. You're supposed to be an inter-Sector troubleshooter, not troublemaker." He turned to the starfish alien. "And we promise not to blow up planets, if you don't do the mind-control-by-attaching-to-faces thing."

"Mind-control by attaching-to-faces thing, INDEED."

"Don't tell me how to do my job, rookie."

Kyle sighed. He took a sip of his drink. It was surprisingly pleasant, if he ignored the color--sweet, and otherwise indescribable. As the volume increased around him, he took another drink. Guy and not-actually-Starro went back to insulting each other.

Within ten minutes, they were well into a barfight. A no rings, no face-clinging, free-for-all. Kyle's drink was making him oddly quiet and contemplative, so instead of diving in like he usually would have--he'd started a barfight or two in his day--he found himself sitting under the bar with some of the staff, sketching action scenes on what he presumed was a napkin (in any case, it was available and write-on-able).

He'd just managed to get a good sketch or two of some of Guy's more ignominious poses (always the fun kind) when the police showed up.

Metaphorically. In point of fact, it was just the being they'd come to see--the new Green Lantern of Sector 1132, Fozu Loven. "Beings of all kinds, stop! The Holsta section is for trade, not for war." Guy's ring noted (and got yelled at for its trouble) that it was more poetic in the original language. Green beams pried the more dogged adversaries apart, but most of the combatants stopped and tried to look innocent as soon as they saw the green beam.

Guy picked himself out of the middle of the brawl, mending his clothing and straightening his hair with a flash of his ring. "Green Lantern 1132-2, took you long enough."

"You are the Guardians' representative? In a barroom brawl?"

"That's me, Guy Gardner himself. I've been hearing some disturbing reports from this sector."

"What about?" said Fozu Loven, drawing himself up defensively.

"About you being a busybody who spends too much time breaking up brawls and not enough time saving people."

"So you came here and started a brawl? To see if I'd come?"

"Most direct way of finding out. Now come on, there's important work on the other side of the sector. You too, Kyle--where are you?"

Kyle put a finishing touch on the drawing of the position Guy had been in when the other Green Lantern had shown up. Nothing quite like Guy Gardner wrestling with a starfish-alien; he and Fozu Loren shouldn't be the only ones scarred for life.

"Before you leave. Please apologize to Asteria Etolla; she is an important diplomat." He indicated the starfish-alien.

"Sorry about that," said Guy, shaking its tentacle. "Good fight, though!"

"No problem at all." It--she, apparently--bowed with surprising dignity. "Next time you need a brawl for your work, just call me directly."

Later, when Guy and Kyle were on their own again, traveling through space, Kyle asked, "Did you know that starfish lady?"

"Nope. Nice fight, though. Hey, I know a great bar on Graxos V, come on, maybe you'll get to fight this time."

Kyle petted his growing collection of pictures. "Maybe."