Prologue

I am one with the Force and the Force is with me.- Jedha Guardian chant

It'd been a long grueling battle so he was grateful when it finally ended. The boy sighed as he relaxed or at least as much as he could in the barracks on his bunk brushing off the dirt and clumps of mud from his hair. He fingered his stone that laid nestled in his pocket of his tattered pants as a way to calm himself. This only thing keeping him sane at this point since all he could see was death and destruction both in waking moment and his dreams.

This was hell and yet this wasn't nearly as bad as it could've been. No his intuition had kinda nudge him at not showing the fullest extent of his abilities which saved him given what he'd seen happen to other slaves that showed a particular aptitude for having rather unusual abilities that had well vanished it wasn't too bad. Still it was a trial to say the least and he wanted out of it. In fact he was desperate to get out and was contemplating stowing away on one of the supply ships. True others had tried and failed but he was willing to try at this point because well risking death couldn't be that bad compared to this hell...

He pulled his stone and looked at it as a myriad of ideas for escape fluttered in his head. It was for all intents and purposes a pretty rock that reflected a wide array of colors when held up to the light but the boy knew that if he concentrated then it would glow with an inner light. He wasn't sure where he'd gotten it but he knew that it was important to him. As he gazed at the rock using it as a rallying point for his thoughts he heard a crash coming from the nearby supply depot. Realizing that the guards must've been either taken out or left it alone he ran toward it tucking his rock back in and pulling out his weapon. His rather unique weapon that no one had been able to replicate...

"Aw man," a strangely accented voice caught his attention as he ran in. Looking over he saw a pale being that looked similar to him dressed in a dirty shirt and well worn travel pants and boots. On top of this he wore a red jacket with a fireball patch on his shoulders. His reddish blond hair stood out in stark contrast both the muddy brown and black confines of the depot behind him were the missing guard tied up in a extra rope knocked out of course. Who was this guy?

"Um hi, I don't suppose you know where a fancy laser sword is do ya?" The being asked with disarming lopsided smile as he fingered a blaster at his side. Clearly he'd been caught off guard by his sudden appearance.

"You mean this one?" The boy asked igniting the blade with a snap-hiss it's flickering azure color lighting up the depot. The intruder's face lighted up with awe at the sight.

"That's so rad," he breathed his face acquiring a full blown grin. "Don't suppose you'd just hand it over?"

"No...but..." His voice trailed off as idea came to him. This guy wasn't apart of the army so he'd gotten here by ship. A ship he could use to escape.

"But if you can take me and I'll work for you," the boy said seizing the opportunity. This was a chance to get out of here. Granted he had no way of knowing if it was going to be better or worse then the war zone but at this point he'd take his chances. Besides it was a surer bet then smuggling himself out. He'd take it.

"Wait really?" The intruder blinked. "You'd throw in your lot with me? Not that I'm complaining but I figured it be a bit harder or something."

"Look anything right now is better then here," the boy answered him sincerely. "Please. I need to get out of here. I'll do anything please."

"Okay, okay," the intruder said looking off balanced. "This is so weird and not in my plan...Still I can do this. Okay you gotta name? I'm Peter Quill by the way."

"Um no," he replied rubbing the back of his neck somewhat embarrassed. "I-I can't remember."

And that was the truth, he couldn't remember. He could recall flashes of memory like a swish of a cloak, the taste of a spicy yet soothing drink, the smell of incense, the feel of grass beneath his feet and a hand squeezing his shoulder in a comforting gesture. But that was really all he could remember. Well that and the village before he was a slave but that was neither here or there.

"So you gotta a nickname or something I can call ya?"

"Well...I like Ben." He wasn't sure he got the name from but it came naturally to him so he wasn't going to question it.

"Then I'll call you Ben," Peter smiled at him. "Welcome to the Ravagers bro. Now let's get outta here."

"Hey what's going on?!" His overseer, Weu-Skir's voice barked making them both duck into the depot and him deactivate his laser sword. They hide amongst the shelves hoping that the onlooker would leave and soon. As it turned their luck was just plain rotten and instead he spotted the fact the guard was missing and blew the alarm. Ben tensed up at the sound. Oh no no no. He wasn't going back to this. And if this thief was his way off then so be it, he'd make it work.

"Do you have a plan?" The newly christened Ben whispered looking at Peter who looked very panicked.

"Sorta...kinda...no."

"Seriously?!" Ben glared at him.

"Well my original plan was grab the awesome weapon sneak back to the ship dude!" Peter hissed waving his hands helplessly looking a little panicked. "I wasn't expecting to pick up crew! I mean not that I mind because I reckon you're a what? A deserter? POW?"

"I'm a battle slave actually," Ben stated sourly. "I was sold as a slave."

"Well...sheesh," Peter whispered looking from suspicious to sympathetic. "Well then you're definitely coming no lie."

"Thanks but this doesn't change the fact we're trapped."

"Wait! I got something!" Peter snapped his fingers while a triumphant grin went across his face.

"What?"

"Alright this is gonna be tricky so bear with me..." Peter looked like he was steeling himself for something. But for what? Ben didn't know.

"I have a bad feeling about this," Ben muttered shaking his head. "Okay what is it?"

"Um well okay sorry in advance," he apologized as he picked up a band...medical if what he was seeing was correct.

"What are you-?"

Ben's question was left unfinished since Peter unexpectedly cuffed him in the head hard enough to give a headache making him hiss. Peter on the other hand yowled as he held his bruised left hand.

"Ow man! You've gotta a hard head! Ow ow dude!"

"Oh for the love of...where's your ship?" Ben rolled his eyes as he rubbed his head while Peter continued to rub his now bruised left knuckle.

"A few meters to the left of here. Why?"

"Good the prison is that way," Ben said as he pulled out a spare set of cuffs from the piles and slammed them on Quill's wrists making him squeak with surprise. "Now get moving."

"Wait, why do I hafta play prisoner?"

"Because it makes sense I know the terrain better. What were you planning on doing then? Running around with me unconscious on your shoulder?"

"Well yeah," he gestured to a discarded medic band on the ground. "I was gonna make like you got sick or something..."

"No," Ben said giving him a hard look. "Hospital is other side of the camp near the officer's quarters."

"Well it seems your plan was a better idea," Peter said gesturing with his bound hands one of which looked like had a cut and bruises. "Lead on MacDuff."

"Who?"

"Just go."

"Weirdo."

"Hey look who's talking jerkface!"

"Quiet," Ben hissed as they exited the depot just in time for the overseers to arrive with backup.

"Soldier 4321," the lead one that Ben recognized as another overseer, a big Kree named Gar-Tavi hissed. This was both bad and good. Bad because the man was a sadistic jerk and had been known to beat slaves to death hence why he was in charge. Good because he wasn't too bright, oh he was smart enough to get a head but he tended not to notice things if one was clever enough. Weu-Skir on the other hand was much more crafty then him as was head overseer Geon. "What is this?"

"A thief trying to steal supplies," he replied as he thrusted Peter out to prove the point. He used his abilities to push a suggestion into his mind. "I caught him in the act and so I'm taking him to the brig."

"Good," the Kree said his white teeth standing out in contrast to his baby blue skin. "I look forward to dealing it. Congrats you just got yourself some extra rations brat."

"Yes sir, thank you sir" Ben saluted as he dragged the Ravager along. After they'd gotten a safe distance from them he let go of Peter and asked: "Okay where's the ship?"

"That way," he pointed to an outcropping nearby the camp. "It'll fit us both if you don't mind the squeeze getting in. I had to park it in a tight place."

"I don't care as long as I get off this piece of rock."

"Now that's music to my ears. Now come in we're get outta here."


"What the noble stars systems were you thinking boy?!" Yondu howled. "I thought you were smarter then this boy!"

"Okay alright alright," Peter waved his hands trying got calm down the irate captain while Ben stood quietly in the background. Yondu had been bitching and moaning the entire time since they'd gotten back and really there was no need for it. "So what? I didn't get the laser sword per se. But I got the wielder and now he's member of the crew. So I'd say it's a win."

"You nearly lost me a great deal of money and nearly got yourself killed and you're worth a lotta money too," Yondu hissed glaring daggers at him. "So he'd better be worthy it or I toss him out the airlock. You hear me?!"

"It will," Peter smiled sneaking a glance to Ben who looked like he was trying not to get caught in the middle of the argument. "He's my bro. And he's a smart guy too so it's all good."

"You've adopted him?" Yondu looked confused. He looked at thoroughly dumbfounded Ben and back to Peter.

"What are you-" Peter cut himself off realizing that yeah for all intents and purposes he had adopted Ben since he'd busted him out. Not that he minded since he was quick on his feet and fun to banter with which they'd been doing the entire trip back... so yeah he was his brother...Actually he really liked the sound of that. Yeah he'd roll with it.

"Yeah he is," Peter declared smiling at an astonished Ben. "And his name is Ben Quill. He's mine so you gotta problem with that?"

"No," Yondu said strangely backing down. This seemed to be a day for surprises. "But he'd better be worth it."

"I'll earn my keep," Ben interjected giving Yondu an earnest look complete with a silly looking short bow that made Peter snort softly. "I promise. Please just don't send me back to the Kree."

"Yeah he was a battle slave to the Kree so he's good for a fight and he's smart too," Peter added figuring he could sweeten the deal. The more assets he had the less likely Yondu would kick him out. "He's good and he won't be a burden."

"I'll hold you both to that," Yondu growled his familiar snarl coming back as his gaze snapped to Ben. "Or my men will eat you like they wanted to do with...your little brother."

"Over my dead body," Ben replied giving him a really scary look. Peter himself was a tad unnerved by the glare as well. Note to self don't piss him off.

Yondu nodded and walked off in a huff leaving Peter alone with Ben. Looking at the boy he asked: "So how are old are you anyways?"

"17 standard cycles," Ben said absently giving him a searching look.

"Aw man," Peter moaned. "You're a year older then me. A come on, now that just ain't fair."

"Peter...did you really mean that or was that a lie to get me abroad?"

"No it's not a lie and yes I'm adopting you," Peter answered with a smile.

"Um I mean if that's okay with you," he hastily added not wanting to offend him. "If not then that's okay...I mean it's totally cool."

"No," Ben whispered looking rather touched. "No it's fine."

"Yeah?"

"Yes."

"Cool," Peter smiled at his newly minted brother. "Now let's find you a bunk material and make some space in the Milano for you..."