"Can You Hear Me Calling You?"

Story by Adele
Story Copyright 2003
A story based on the series, "Voltron, Defender of the Universe."

The characters of Voltron are the property of World Event Productions.  All other characters are the copyright of Adele.  Please do not use them without asking for permission.  Thank you.

Enjoy!


Chapter 8
Breaking the News

Lance and Sven sat in the lounge area of the pilot's mess, waiting for Keith.  He sent word to his two roommates that he had something very important to tell them, and he wanted to tell them in person. 

Sven sat quietly with his head hanging down and his fingers intertwined together, with his elbows resting on his knees. 

Lance, on the other hand, was pacing the room, somewhat unnerved by Keith's communication that he had something very important to share with them both something that was going to change their everyday lives together. 

As Keith entered the lounge, Lance tapped Sven lightly on his shoulder, gaining his attention that their friend had finally arrived. 

Sven tipped his head up.  One look at Keith's downcast face, told him instantly, that he had something serious to discuss. 

Lance wasted no time...as Keith walked up to him, he immediately hit on Keith for information.

"Okay, hotshot!  You mind telling us what's so important?" Lance immediately barked rather anxiously.

Keith let out a somewhat subdued sigh.  "Lance...Sven...I...I've...I've been promoted."

"Promoted?" Sven said suddenly, as he now rose to his feet.  "In rank?"

"Yeah," Keith sighed again.  "I'm now a Captain."

"Well, congratulations, Captain Hunter!" Lance bellowed, but quickly followed it up with; "But how does that change our everyday lives together?  Did they promote you to another team too?"

"Well...kind of, Lance," Keith replied slowly.  "You see, guys...I've been offered a chance to go into deep space...to another planet.  I...I can't tell you much more than that, because the info is classified...but...I'm leaving Earth, and being reassigned to another planet."

"Another planet?" Sven replied.  "You're being sent away from Eart?"

"What for?" Lance blurted out.  "What reason do they have to send you away?"

"Lots," Keith replied.  "I'm going to help stop a war that's going on."

"A...war?" Lance replied slowly.  "Are...are you...kidding?"

Keith bent his head slightly and slowly shook his head no.  "I'm being shipped out in six days."

"Six days?" Lance shouted suddenly.  "But...they're breaking up our team!"

"They'll find another team leader for Yellow Squadron." Keith replied, trying to keep his voice upbeat.

"I'm not talking about Yellow Squadron, Keith!   I'm talking about you, Sven and me!  OUR team!  They're breaking up our friendship!  They can't do that!"

"High Command can do whatever dey want, Lance." Sven replied back quietly. "If dey want to send Keit away, dere's no-ting dat we can say about it."

"Actually," Keith added "I was offered the position...that's the important thing I had to think about."

"You were OFFERED the choice to go?" Lance replied sharply.  "And you CHOSE to go... and leave us behind?  Is that it?"

"Lance!  I agonized over this!  I don't want to leave you guys behind!  Believe me!" Keith defended.  "But...it's always been my dream to deep space travel...like my parents did!  I've wanted this for a long time, Lance!   Now, the opportunity presents itself to me!  What was I supposed to do?  Turn down, what might be, my only chance to ever go into space?"

"YES!" Lance shouted.  "At least, you could have asked US to be assigned with you!"

"I couldn't do that, Lance!" Keith replied. "I would be showing favoritism!"

"Keit's right, Lance." Sven replied suddenly. "Dey would never assign us togeter if dey knew dat Keit showed favorites."

"But...we're his friends!" Lance grumbled.  "At least...I thought we were!"

"We are friends, Lance!" Keith replied.  "ButI couldn't pass this up!  And believe me, I gave myself all the excuses in the world to talk myself out of it and stay here on Earth!  But...something pulled me to accept the assignment...something...I don't know... just something."

"I don't understand, Keit," Sven asked him.  "Are you saying dat you feel it's da right ting for you to do?"

"Yeah," Keith replied slowly. "Something like that, I guess."

"Sounds like a cheap excuse to bail on his friends, if you ask me!" Lance huffed, crossing his arms in front of his chest.

"Believe me, Lance!" Keith replied, laying a gentle hand on his friend's shoulder.  "If I could take you with me...if it were my choice to make...I would have asked!  Don't you think this is killing me too?  I'm leaving everything and everyone I know here on Earth, and heading off to, what sounds like, a war zone!  Of course, I'd want my friends with me!  But that's not my choice to make!  Please understand, Lance!  I don't want to leave Earth, knowing my friends are angry with me!"

Lance suddenly looked up at Keith...meeting his dark onyx stare.  Lance could almost feel the hurt in Keith's eyes.   It was then that Lance let out a long exhale of air.

"Well, we can't have that, can we." Lance said quietly.  He unfolded his arms and extended his right hand to Keith. 

"Congratulations, Keith.  I know you'll do fine...and you'll make a fine Galaxy Alliance representative." Lance replied.

Keith grabbed onto his hand, slowly shaking it  "Thanks, Lance." he said quietly.

Sven grabbed him from behind.  "We're proud of you, Keit." he said.  

Keith turned and gave Sven a handshake, at first.

Then, the handshake quickly turned into a hearty hug.  "Thanks, Sven." Keith replied, somewhat choked up.

As the three men patted each other on the back a courier arrived.

"Captain Hunter!" the boy said with a snappy salute.

Not quite used to the feel of the new title, Keith smiled, somewhat sheepishly, and returned the salute. 

The boy dropped his hand, then turned to Lance and Sven.

"Pardon me, gentlemen." The young lad replied.  "I have communications for Lt. Sven B'Yourn and for Lt. Lance Andrews.   I was told by the gentleman at the coffee stand in the front, that you two are the men I'm looking for?"

"Yes.  I'm Sven B'Yourn."

"I'm your man, Lance Andrews!" Lance replied, chucking his thumb at himself.

The young boy nodded his head as he distributed the envelopes.  "My orders were to hand deliver these to you both."

"Tank you." Sven replied as he took the letter into his hand. 

Lance grabbed onto his slowly as well.

The boy then turned to them again.  "Can you also tell me where I can find Lt. Jonathan Simon and Ensign Pidge Villatoro?"

Lance quickly scanned the room for Hunk.  "Well, doesn't appear that they're here."

The boy nodded, then saluted Keith.  After Keith acknowledged the salute, the boy turned and left.

"Huh, wonder what this is all about," Lance mumbled.

Sven began to open his letter immediately.  After a few seconds of readinga slow smile came to his face. 

"Well, Keit!  It looks like you won't be leaving me behind!  Dis is an order dat I'm being reassigned to Planet Arus, in the Denubian Galaxy!"

"What?" Keith replied as he suddenly grabbing Sven's letter from his hands.  "Here, let me see that!"

"Dat iz where you're going...izn't it?" Sven chuckled.

Meantime, Lance immediately began ripping into his letter as well.   As Keith read through Sven's letter, his attention was suddenly drawn to Lance...

Lance let out a wild shout and a whooping holler of joy, as he then waved the letter in Keith's face. 

"So, you think you're dumping us, do you?" Lance chuckled suddenly.  "Well, buddy!  Think again!  I've just been assigned to the Planet Arus mission too!   My commanding officer is none other than, the dashing, somewhat, 'stuck on himself and walking procedure manual', Captian Keith Hunter!  I'm to report to Vice-Admiral Marshall tomorrow morning at 08:00 hundred hours for debriefings!"

"Get out of here!" Keith hollered joyfully at Lance, grabbing his letter too.

After a moment of reading the letters, Keith immediately tossed them both in the air, letting out a shout of his own.

The three men embraced each other happily, until Keith broke it off.

"Hey, I just realized!  Hunk's going with us too then!  And so's that new whiz kid, Pidge!"  Keith replied. "The same courier that gave you your letters is looking for them as well!"

"Who cares!" Lance blurted out.  "So long as the three of us are together!  That's all that matters!"

Keith hugged his two friends once again. 

Now, leaving Earth just got easier.
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