Fruitless Vanity

by Phoenix Rafael

This document is licensed under the Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada license, available at

Disclaimer: If it is illegal to read this where you are, then don't read it. This story is completely fictional. Any similarities to any persons or events, past or present is purely coincidental. This story contains homosexual themes, along with a sci-fi/fantasy storyline.

July, 2010

Chapter #2 -- Little Boy Blue

The entire Royal Guard had been called out. Scott could not believe the pace at which the Royal Guard had responded to the order to report to duty. Every member was accounted for, and was now out searching for the Crown Prince.

He quietly observed them in their makeshift command post in the Palace. Normally only a small command post was required, but the search for Tyler was planet-wide.

Royal and Cynthia were comforting themselves and their other son, Skylan.

Scott gave a sigh, wondering what went wrong. The last time he saw Tyler, he was under escort by the Royal Guard back to the Palace. Apparently he never made it there.

"Sir, you should see this." Scott looked over some photos a Lieutenant showed him. The pictures were of a dead guard of the Royal Guard. It was one of the guards who had been escorting Tyler. But where was the other guard?

"We suspect he was a buddy of the dead guard, who stole a uniform. With the equipment thefts recently, we never thought to account for our uniforms." The man speaking to Scott was Major Gerald Simloin.

"But Major, why would anyone do that? So far as I've seen, no one has any need to kidnap the Crown Prince." Scott was trying hard to find a motive.

"Who knows, sir? Perhaps to get to his parents? Perhaps so they'll name someone else as the heir?"

Scott scratched his head. "Any suspects?"

Major Simloin nodded to Scott. "Yes, sir. We think Rebel 44 was behind both the asset thefts and the kidnapping of the Crown Prince."

Scott blinked at Gerald. "Who or what is Rebel 44?"

"Sir, they are a terrorist group here on Rigel Prime. They fire-bombed a few bank branches last month in protest of the upcoming celebrations of the Crown Prince's reaching the age of ascension."

The age of ascension in the Empire was when a child became an adult. Scott wondered though, why anyone would object to Tyler turning 16. Although he had already turned 16, the celebration was usually held a month later.

"Hopefully, he isn't off the planet yet."

Major Simloin nodded, "Hopefully not. We don't have any reason to believe he is, though. No ships have left in the last 12 hours, and all flights off-world have been cancelled."

Scott hmmed. "I presume the armoury at the base has been checked?"

Again the Major nodded. "Aye, sir. It was. Twice. Now a team is checking the entire base while other teams scour the planet."

Scott sat down and starting playing with his rank pips, deep in thought.

A few hours later, Scott found himself in the shower. He was still in deep thought, wondering why he was picked for this assignment, and why this was all happening.

Scott turned off the shower and towel-dried himself. He changed into some casual clothing, and taking his communicator, he left his room. He found himself just down the road from the Palace a few minutes later.

He walked into a tavern called Brass Dragon House. He slipped his hat slightly over his eyes, and ordered a beer from the bar. After paying for it, he found a quiet seat on the corner and started nursing his drink.

Scott had been there two hours when a man and a woman, both looking about age 26 walked into the tavern. There wasn't anything unusual about them, except that they were talking about Tyler. The public hadn't yet been told about his disappearance, so as not to cause a problem.

Scott discreetly left his seat and moved closer to he could eavesdrop.

"When do you want to kill the kid?" The woman asked the man.

"If we kill him too early, we'll never get what we want. We need those people freed from jail to accomplish the end objective of overthrowing the monarchy. So they'll insist they see he is unharmed." The man replied. Both people were speaking low, but not low enough that it stopped Scott from hearing them.

Scott got up from his seat and walked over to the table. He tipped his hat to the man and woman. "Good day."

The woman glared at Scott. "What do you want?"

Scott looked the woman in the eye, "I overheard what you were saying. If I heard it, others likely did too. I... support what you're doing. So perhaps this conversation should move elsewhere?"

Of course the woman and man didn't trust Scott. But then why was he at their table?

"I'm Raisin," the woman introduced.

"And I'm Ajax," the man introduced. The two looked like they could be twins.

"Noah." Scott shook their hands, giving them the fake name. He decided to use this as an opportunity to find where they had Tyler.

The three finished their drinks, and then left the tavern. Raisin and Ajax lead Scott to the other side of the city, to an abandoned rail station which wasn't much bigger than the washroom's at a stadium. When Scott entered the station, he saw Tyler, bound and gagged.

By Tyler were five others -- three woman, and two men. This group was Rebel 44.

Scott looked to Raisin and Ajax, "Why did you bring me here?"

Ajax looked over to Scott. "You seem trustworthy, Noah. Besides, when you went to the bathroom, Raisin slipped a drug into your beer. You'll pass out in a minute or two. It had enough of a lead time so you could walk here yourself, saving us from having to carry you."

And of course Scott promptly passed out.

Scott awoke an hour later, tied up but his mouth was free. He could talk if he wished. They hadn't searched him, as he still has his communicator on him not that he could reach it.

Raisin looked over to the awake Scott, on the chair next to Tyler. "We're all going for dinner. You're in charge." Not like either of them could escape.

Rebel 44 left the station. Tyler was now awake as well and managed to slightly loosen his gag. "Nice going. You got yourself caught." Both of them were sure that no one was listening in.

"I apologize, Tyler." Scott didn't think it was the time for tittles.

"Yeah, whatever." Tyler was clearly not impressed."

"Listen, Tyler. I can't reach my back pocket, but if we can get close enough to each other, perhaps you can get my communicator out."

The two shifted and shuffled, but finally they were back to back, and Tyler was trying to get out the device. He was having a very hard time of it, as both of their hands were exceptionally bound.

But finally after a few minutes, Tyler got it out. He knew what to do, having been trained in them and hit the silent emergency response button. Thankfully, the communicator could be tracked.

But unluckily for them, Raisin came in half an hour later though they had put everything back the way it was before they got out the communicator. So nothing looked out of place.

"Perhaps you were telling the truth, Noah" Raisin commented, in general not expecting a reply. She was considering untying Scott.

A few minutes later, the station was surrounded, with a very loud speaker outside. "This is the Royal Guard. Come out with your hands up." How typical.

Raisin was still the only one there. She blinked, but she did as they demanded knowing that if she didn't, they would raid the place.

And so an hour later, Tyler and Scott found themselves back at the Palace, with Scott in the shower and Tyler with his family.

Scott could finally relax, now that Tyler was safe. They both gave the Royal Guard their statements, and the rest of Rebel 44 was rounded up. Their fate was still to be determined, but a trial in the Royal Court instead of the regular courts was being seriously considered.

When Scott finished his shower, Leslie was waiting for him in his room. She was naked, too. Scott smiled and walked over to her, not bothering to dress. "What brings you here?"

Leslie grinned, "You're my hero. You managed to save the Crown Prince. So I thought you deserved a reward."

Scott grinned a little. "I am getting a military medal."

Leslie laughed a little, "Yes, but this is a little more... up close and personal." She ran her hand teasingly down Scott's chest while he moved to sit next to her.

Scott's lips joined Leslie's while they started to touch each other.

The doors to the room opened, and Tyler stepped in. "What are you doing?!?"

Both of them jumped up and off the bed, standing as rigid as possible. "Your Highness, we were..." Scott started to explain, but was stammering. Why he was so nervous about a 16 year old he wasn't sure. Scott was a confident man. He was considered a jock and could sleep with any woman he wanted. Even Leslie.

"Save it, Major! Yes, you saved my ass. But you shouldn't be sleeping with the help." Tyler simply growled and left the room.

Leslie sighed. "He doesn't like me. Never has, I'm not really sure why. He always insists on an intermediary when he deals with me. When he takes the throne, I'll be out of a job."

Scott nodded a little in understanding. "Such is the life and career you've chosen Leslie."

Leslie couldn't disagree. "Perhaps I should have joined the Imperial Guard."


Scott found himself in the kitchen well after bed time. He was hungry, having missed dinner. Royal was there, and made him a sandwich, something he didn't expect. "I'm afraid I offended Tyler earlier."

Royal simply nodded. "He told us."

"And you don't mind? That I was going to sleep with Leslie?"

Royal shrugged. "She's single. You're single. I don't see an issue with it. But Tyler has never liked her. He finds her cold, to the point of being mean even when she's not trying to be. More than once he's wanted to have her executed."

Scott ahhed and took a sip of his orange juice. "Does he suspect something about her?"

Again Royal shrugged. "I honestly don't know. But she's been a great Chief of Staff to Cynthia. As you know I have my own his name is Ethan Jeffers. He and Leslie get along well, but he's married. Tyler doesn't like Ethan either."

Scott nodded and ate his sandwich. "Is there anyone Tyler does like?"

Royal had to think about that for a few moments. "I think he likes you."

Scott blinked at that. "What makes you say that?"

"Because he's never complained about anyone so much as he does about you."