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Sabine: The rise of an Assassin:
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Sabrina Bergin





Joined: 12 Apr 2008
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PostPosted: Fri, 22. May 15, 06:39    Post subject: Sabine: The rise of an Assassin: Reply with quote Print

Sabine: (The Back story)

I never knew my foster mother, not really, to her I had been a subject to be studied, as part of her work so there had never been any real emotional bond between us. It was a bit disappointing though to realise she had made no provision for me in the event of her untimely death. Now don’t get me wrong I’m not ungrateful for what she’d done for me, without her I would probably still be locked up in that institution along with the rest of the nutcases, that was probably the reason I’d never acted on the occasional impulse’s I’d had to kill her since then.

The formal notice to quit her apartment had arrived this morning along with a reference number to take to the social services department. That would allow me to obtain appropriate temporary accommodation, yeah like I was going to hand myself over to them, and become just another little worker drone for Otas.

I packed a carryall with the clothes I wanted to keep , the ones I had bought myself, the others Suzeanne had bought for me that I’d never liked but had worn just to keep her happy, those I would leave, as I would also leave behind any plans or hopes she might have had for my future. It was time for me to shed the persona I had worn like a second skin to please her, and do what I wanted for a change.

So it was with a sense of freedom I looked down on my Mamba its hull polished to perfection and gleaming under the hanger bay floods. I had inherited it from my uncle after I’d killed him, he hadn’t known that I’d always intended killing him of course but I had made it part of the deal for him to get his hands on the family fortune. I still couldn’t believe he’d been so stupid as to buy that load of bull, he’d known it at the end just before he’d died I’d made sure of that, recalling the terrified expression on his face as his ground car under my control had dived of the cliff side road the link ending as it had crashed onto the rocks nearly a thousand metres below.

Feeling a warm glow at the memory I contemplated the plans I had been making for Jazura, in a way his death had shown me that I had a talent for the career I had finally chosen for myself, that talent was still raw and untrained though, it needed nurturing before I got myself killed. Luckily I knew just the place to get that training, and as an added bonus I would get paid for my troubles as well, that was going to be handy as after kitting out the Mamba I was now flat broke.

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Zaitsev





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PostPosted: Sat, 23. May 15, 07:08    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Interesting start. I'll be watching this one, especially since I'm tinkering with a somewhat similar character myself.

*sits down and patiently awaits moar*


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DiDs:
Eye of the storm Completed
Eye of the storm - book 2 Inactive
Black Sun - Completed
Endgame - Completed
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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Sat, 23. May 15, 07:44    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Zaitsev:

Tell me your tinkering does not involve the Xenon. Please!

This is as I stated a back story but it was a lot of fun to get where I wanted to be, so yes there is a lot more to come.

As always advice and comments are always welcome. To any critics please leave your contact details at the desk, Sabine may choose to respond personally.

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Zaitsev





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PostPosted: Sat, 23. May 15, 17:40    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

shaun bergin wrote:
Zaitsev:

Tell me your tinkering does not involve the Xenon. Please!

This is as I stated a back story but it was a lot of fun to get where I wanted to be, so yes there is a lot more to come.

As always advice and comments are always welcome. To any critics please leave your contact details at the desk, Sabine may choose to respond personally.


Regarding my character ... Well, she's pretty much as nuts as they come, so there's really no telling what she'll end up doing.

As for comments I'd like to point out that your writing has improved significantly, and hope Sabine doesn't hurt me too much. Keep up the good work! Smile


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DiDs:
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Eye of the storm - book 2 Inactive
Black Sun - Completed
Endgame - Completed
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JJRSC





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PostPosted: Sun, 24. May 15, 23:31    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

I'm looking forward to seeing more too. You're off to a good start!

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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Mon, 25. May 15, 10:10    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Thanks for the kind words they are always welcome.

A Baptism of fire:

I was free, that was the thought that gripped me as I maxed out the throttles and headed for the north gate. It was a long way to Elena’s fortune but I had planned ahead and had a stash of MRE packs in the hold. What I hadn’t planned on was the two pirates that ambushed me as soon as I emerged from the gate in Akeela’s.

I just froze, I’d never been shot at before and it scared the hell out of me I probably would have died right there till I saw the damage they were doing to my ship. That just pissed me of, I’d paid a lot to have the Hull polished and these idiots were ruining it.

That anger spurred me into action I flipped the cap of the safeties as I targeted the Harrier that had swung round to make another pass at me. Seems the pilot had forgotten that HEPT’s have a lot more range than the IRE’s he was shooting at me with, he went up in a ball of flames before he even managed to get a hit on my shields.

The other idiot in the Discoverer must have thought I wouldn’t notice him trying to sneak up on me whilst I dealt with his friend. That was a mistake as he found out when I pulled a hard one eighty and watched him come straight at me, all I had to do was wait for him to get in range then lay a wall of fire in his path.

That made me feel a whole lot better and I was looking for someone else to kill when I saw the idiots had left me a few presents. I collected the missiles knowing they would be worth a few credits when I sold them on. For the moment I just felt a bit more comfortable having them available.

That was a feeling the local sec defence didn’t share when they finally showed up to see what all the shooting had been about, and I targeted them. Luckily I had cooled off a bit by then and I’d already put the safeties back on my weapons, they ignored the fact I had bracketed them and were even nice enough to thank me for doing their job for them. It was pretty clear from their tone the sooner I moved on the better they would feel about it though.

I swallowed the reply I wanted to make and set course for Aladna hill like a good little girl, the encounter had got me thinking though. It was pretty clear sec defence were not particularly bothered whether I got myself killed or not, and that I would have to be a lot more aware of what was going on around me.

I checked the gravidar repeatedly after that as I headed for the west gate wondering what was with the Boron and Paranid ships I was passing that were all showing as being hostile to me, I had never been of station till now and was wondering what their problem was.

It wasn’t me of course it was the ship I realised, seems my uncle had pissed of both races before he’d died, that shouldn’t have surprised me. The man had been a thief and a rapist that was the reason I’d killed the jerk. I simply hadn’t bothered changing the ships IFF code to reflect the fact I was the new owner which I realised in hindsight I should have done. That oversight I was going to have to take care of sooner rather than later, and I was pretty sure would cost me money I didn’t have at the moment.

I was ignoring the Captain of the Dolphin who was taking exception to me sitting right behind her ship as we entered the gate, now I had always heard the Boron were supposed to be polite, the language this one was using told me otherwise and I had to force myself not to light her up as a target.

The bitch came to a dead stop as soon as we emerged from the gate which had me screaming curses at her as I pulled back hard on the stick getting a lot closer to the freighter than I wanted. To be honest that stunt which I am sure was deliberate probably saved my life, seems a couple of pirates had targeted me as soon as I cleared the gate, the missiles they had fired at me hitting that freighter and giving the Captain a reason to swear at someone else for a change.

I targeted the pirates as soon as I cleared the freighter my proximity alarm screaming as I flew past the bridge close enough to wipe the window clean for her. The pirates had already shot past the freighter probably not expecting her to come to a dead stop like that, and I was on their six before they had time to realise they had missed me.

I didn’t miss them, I might have been a bit heavy on the trigger I realised as both ships turned into a single fireball that I flew through a split sezura later. I swung my Mamba around and gave serious thought to blowing that Dolphin to hell as well. Lucky for her Captain a couple of the local customs ships had come over, I was pretty certain they had seen the stunt she had pulled and guessed what I was thinking.

So I put the safeties back on whilst they read her the riot act and got her moving away from the gate whilst keeping an eye on me. I had to swallow that for the moment but I made a note of her registration as I changed course and headed for the military outpost.

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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Wed, 27. May 15, 07:16    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

My apologies I think I made that last post a bit too long... whilst it is Ok, I should have polished it a bit more before posting.

Sabine is going to be controlling herself early on, she is capable of resisting her more homicidal urges when she has to. So criticism you'll probably get away with at the moment.

Having said that I do have a few pages already written, my thoughts are that in making them shorter I can avoid mistakes creeping in. If you see something that you don't understand or think is just wrong say so, I want you to enjoy this as well.

I anticipate I will be posting at fairly regular intervals, so any input/advice at this stage is more than welcome, and will be given serious consideration.

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Sabrina Bergin





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modified
PostPosted: Wed, 27. May 15, 10:01    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Doing the grind:

The man at the desk was saying no, ooh he wasn’t actually using the word itself but he was dancing all around it. He was obviously trying to avoid having me burst into tears at the bad news he was patiently trying to make me accept. No doubt he considered me an overly enthusiastic, and ambitious young girl who should have waited till I was a bit older before applying. Seems that I had made a big mistake in assuming I could just walk in and be accepted into the fleet as a cadet. Even after paying to have the registration details updated on my Mamba I still didn’t qualify to be considered, let alone accepted, my looking younger than I was didn't help either. My glaring at the man wasn’t going to change the facts, I would have to improve my reputation with the authorities quite a bit before even thinking about applying again.

I could do that... well I was pretty sure I could, it just meant putting my plans on hold for a while, that also meant there was no point in going on to the main recruitment centre in Elenas either. I grudgingly thanked the man for his time seeing his relief he as he realised I wasn't about to start crying, and more importantly to him at least that I would stop wasting his time. I went back to my ship grinding my teeth all the way contemplating the effects this would have on my overly optimistic plans. I was going to need to hold onto what little money I had left that was obvious, that meant getting off station pretty damn quick. If I stayed in dock any longer I would be hit with more charges than I could currently afford, incurring penalty charges was probably not the best way to start out.

Once clear of the stations shields I picked a clear hole in the space around me and flew well away from the in system traffic. I needed some peace and quiet to work out what I was going to do now, and didn’t want anyone interfering with the temper tantrum that was coming by sneaking up on me whilst venting the anger that was demanding expression. Temper tantrum over and feeling a bit self conscious about it, I opened a ration pack and chewed on it whilst putting my thoughts in some sort of order. Clearly I was going to have to find some work here in Aladna’s, something legit that would pay enough for me to get by and a bit more besides that didn't involve getting myself killed, I'd been lucky so far and knew it.

Reputation... my own and that toward the other races, would have to be improved. That I had always considered being a long term goal and planned on attending to later, if I was going to earn decent wages that was going to have to be done first. That was going to involve doing a lot of the scut work most people would turn their noses up at, and whilst I wasn't happy with the idea there was no way around it. Decision made I reasoned the sooner I got started the better, and called up the local net looking for what was going to be the first of many jobs I was going to loathe doing.



Last edited by Sabrina Bergin on Thu, 28. May 15, 16:25; edited 3 times in total
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Zaitsev





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PostPosted: Thu, 28. May 15, 07:16    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Since Sabine is apparently in a good mood, trying to avoid starting each paragraph with "I" makes things easier and less repetitive to read.

For example, instead of

"I could do that [...]"

"I undocked then [...]"

"I would have to improve [...]"

try something like

"I could do that [...]

"Releasing the docking clamps, I picked a clear hole in the space around me [...]"

"Reputation was the next thing that needed work. I needed to improve my own as well as that toward the other races. [...]"

I find that it makes for a nice mental workout to try to find the right words without repeating myself, while still making sure the sentence say what I want it to say.

*sit down on bed and await death by orbital bombardment, sharp objects or untraditional (ab)use of kitchen appliances.*


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DiDs:
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Eye of the storm - book 2 Inactive
Black Sun - Completed
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Sabrina Bergin





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modified
PostPosted: Thu, 28. May 15, 10:06    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Zaitsev:

Thank you for your reply, your advice is much appreciated and is exactly the sort of thing I need to progress as a writer.


Edited the previous post to remove some of the I's.

I didn't even see that till you pointed it out. Doh!

*Slaps ones wrist and stands in corner with pointy hat on.*

As for Sabine... I try not to let her in the kitchen due to the abundance of sharp objects, and the creative uses she keeps coming up with for the appliances. As you mentioned.

As yet she doesn't have the resources to launch a strike from orbit I suspect she could come up with something at a push, all you might have to worry about at the moment are the white goods that survive re-entry.



Last edited by Sabrina Bergin on Fri, 29. May 15, 18:22; edited 3 times in total
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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Thu, 28. May 15, 14:29    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Mazura later:

Pico came over to my table looking for trouble as I was eating my meal, and to be honest I was not in the best of moods. The patrol we had just finished had left me anticipating an expensive repair bill for the Mamba. I had patched her up for now, but it needed a shipyard’s crew to make her look good as new again.

Normally I would have let it go but this idiot had been in my face all too often of late, and to be honest… I was sick of the sight of him. He had some very strange ideas on who should be allowed to take part in sector defence missions, ideas he was always harping on about to the others.

The fact that despite my age and gender I owned my own ship, and that it was a lot better than the ill equipped Buster he flew really upset him. When he had looked up the number of kills I had been credited with in this and surrounding sectors, he seemed to have taken particular exception to me, and had been on my case ever since.

We all knew what his latest problem with me was of course, the last sector defence mission I had just finished along with most of the others in the room had been a bitch that had left me wrung out and tired to the bone. I definitely hadn’t wanted to tangle with the Xenon P at the end of it. That thing had put the dings in my Mamba's hull, but when I’d found myself on its six I knew that was the safest place a body could be.

It had taken me what had seemed forever but eventually I’d stripped its shields and blown it to toasters heaven... if they had one. Pico’s problem was that just because he had fired a couple of missiles at it from range he thought he should have got the kill bonus, he had been whining about that ever since to anybody who would listen.

He was in full rant mode so I thought I'd let him blow off steam for a bit and ignored the personal comments, waiting for him to realise I was going to keep on ignoring him. He went too far when he saw that, and started screaming in my face that I should give him the bonus payment for the kill. He shouldn’t have done that, I knew it... He knew it... and all the other pilots in the room knew it as well.

“Pico” Bran.. one of the older and more experienced guys said his voice carrying a warning in the sudden silence, “Arlen got the credit for that P because she deserved it. She was tearing that thing a new one before you even knew it was there, kept the damn thing of my back to boot.” The man raised his glass to me in salute a gesture I returned as there was a muttered chorus of agreement from the other pilots in the room.

“Look Pico” I said coldly, “you got a problem with the bonus take it up with sector defence, they decide who gets paid for what, now leave me alone so I can enjoy my meal in peace.” I finished giving him the chance to walk away from this now.

“You shouldn’t even be here” he shouted back at me instead leaning over the table and grabbing my arm, “why don’t you go back home to your MOMMY! like a good little girl, and leave this work to the grown ups... Before you get hurt?”

The threat was too blatant to be ignored.

What surprised me was I hadn’t gone for his throat the moment he’d laid his hand on me, everyone knew I didn’t like being handled if not the reasons why. It was what he’d said, calling Suzeanne a MOMMY! In such an insulting way that lit the cold rage he could see in my eyes right now. That the rage was cold and deliberate surprised me I felt calm almost serene deciding exactly what I was going to do to him. I took hold of his hand and removed it, looking at him like he was something I shouldn’t have stepped in.

That done I walked around the table to look him right in the eyes before speaking, there was absolute silence in the room as everyone watched me snap punch him hard in the chest. “You shouldn’t have mentioned my mother Pico” I told him not even bothering to raise my voice as he stepped back a pace surprised at the force of the blow, that punch was followed up with a kick to the balls he saw coming but couldn't avoid. That had him dropping to his knees in agony, grabbing at his crotch as he struggled to breathe.

“Just so you know Pico the Xenon killed my mother, and you, you piece of shite shouldn’t have reminded me of that,” I growled from somewhere deep in my chest. I calmly reached behind me picking up my steak knife before stepping around him pulling his head back, and putting the blade to his throat.

To be honest I fully intended killing him, my mind was made up not just because of the snide comments and the insults, but because I was pissed knowing that doing so would ruin any chances of my enlisting. Mazura of supressed impulses were driving that intention now.

I was going to enjoy this he knew that, he had seen the beast raging just behind my eyes as I'd intended, and knew that beast wanted to see his blood flowing. I laughed quietly as he wet himself, seems he wasn’t quite the man he thought he was after all.

The sound of a guns capacitors charging behind me got my undivided attention.



Last edited by Sabrina Bergin on Fri, 29. May 15, 19:09; edited 2 times in total
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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Fri, 29. May 15, 18:00    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Just a quick info message:

It seems IE11 just does not transfer across written italics from MS Word documents.

Thanks to advice from Alan Phipps I now have a workaround.

I mention this because if you see a SEPERATE LINE OF TEXT in italics it is deliberate, that is Sabine listening to a voice in her head not a character in the scene.

It is a tool/contrivance I will be using quite a bit for reasons I won't be explaining to anyone.

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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Fri, 29. May 15, 20:11    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Continued:

Now Dal the guy who owns this bar doesn’t allow personal weapons in his place, so I was pretty sure he was the one holding the gun on me. I was also sure from the sound it made charging up it wasn’t a stunner either.

“Hi yah Dal how you doing?” I asked not moving a muscle.

“Not bad Arlen, yourself?”

“I’ve had better days” I admitted.

“Yeah I can see that Arlen... now I don’t doubt this idiot has done something that has you thinking he deserves whatever you plan on doing with that knife, but I just had this place carpeted for fracks sake!”

The absurdity of what Dal said tickled me it was so left field I couldn’t help but grin at it, that was probably what he’d intended. I changed my mind about cutting Pico’s throat, the idiot wasn’t worth the trouble it would bring down on me , well that and the gun was also a pretty good reason of course. The rage that a moment before had seemed so implacable, and undeniable vanished as fast as it had come over me. I moved real slow as I took the knife away from Pico’s throat and handed it over my shoulder to Dal.

“Appreciated Arlen” Dal said taking the knife, and letting the charge on his gun dissipate. I moved with a speed he hadn’t anticipated, and slammed Pico’s face into the floor before leaving him lying there in a pool of his own piss. Dal looked at that with disgust as he leaned over close to Pico’s head “You are going to pay for the mess dick wad, now get your stuff together and get out the hell out of here before I throw you out.” Pico scrambled to his feet and ran for the door as best he could whilst trying to hide the growing stain on his trousers, and stem the flow of blood from his nose.

“There any reason I shouldn’t be asking you to leave as well Arlen?” Dal asked me reasonably enough as we both watched Pico leave. The man was serious and I didn’t have a ready answer for his question, so I was grateful when Bran came over and spoke up for me.

“Pico had that coming Dal, he’s been trying to make a claim for the bounty Arlen earned for killing a Xenon corvette all by herself today. He was insulting her and started making threats, fact is... I think he deserved a lot more than he got.” Dal nodded accepting Brans word on it. He looked over to the bar and signalled for a cleaner to take care of the mess before turning his attention back to me.

“Were you going to kill him Arlen?” Dal asked looking me straight in the eye.

“To be honest after he grabbed hold of me and mentioned my mother I was giving it serious thought Dal, I knew if I did the fleet would never sign me up” I said truthfully accepting the fact that if he didn’t buy it I would have to give up my spot here. Fortunately Dal accepted what I said at face value, I’d made no secret of my ambitions regarding joining the fleet, and he had called me crazy often enough for wanting to enlist.

“Well this probably calls for a drink then” Dal said leading us towards the bar and handing me a message envelope as he did so. “This came for you just now Arlen, which is why I came down here in the first place.”

The message envelope must have been delivered by courier from the Outpost its only distinguishing mark was the fleet emblem. I just stared at it when I got to the bar, I’d worked my butt of for the best part of a jazura to get this, and I was unsure if I wanted to see the rejection slip a part of me warned it might contain.

“Go on open it” Bran urged, they can hardly turn down a girl of fifteen with a Xenon corvette credited as a kill can they?” They all gathered at the bar as Dal ordered a drink for everyone in the room including me even though I was underage. I took a sip of the whiskey wincing at the harsh taste before opening it and reading the plain card it contained.

“Spit it out girl is it good or bad news?” Dal asked not unkindly.

That question made me realise they were waiting on me to speak, “I’ve got a place” I said reading it again to make sure I hadn’t misread it. The party just sort of happened after that with everyone wishing me well, and others joining in as they arrived. Despite the drinks being offered me I didn’t drink much though I was tempted, I had a long awaited interview to attend in the morning.

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PostPosted: Mon, 15. Jun 15, 20:33    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

A cautionary tale:

The noise of the disc grinder was deafening as I applied it to the last of the welds I had been forced to make yesterday even with the ear defenders I was wearing. I could have left this for the techs at the shipyard to do but I was damned if I was going to fly my plane over to the outpost looking like it had when I’d docked yesterday. I wouldn’t have time to get it fixed at the shipyard before I was due to be over there, vanity? I suppose so but I had been awake anyway, and the more I had thought about how ugly she looked when I had bought her in, the more I wanted to do something about it. I ran my hands over the seam to make sure the weld was smooth before stepping back a bit too look at it from a different angle to make sure the repair didn’t mar her lines.


Bran joined me calling out to signal his presence as I started wrapping up the gear I’d rented from the hanger crew. I was surprised to see him up and about at this hour he had downed quite a few last night. He didn’t say anything at first as he ran his eyes over the section of the hull I had been working on with a practiced eye.

“It looks a lot better than it did than it did,” he allowed when he’d finished his appraisal which told me he had looked her over after I’d landed yesterday. “You still need a bit more practice welding but that will save you time and credits down the line Arlen.”

Bran was right about my skill with a repair laser but that wasn’t why he was here. There was just something about the way he was looking at me that told me that much. Too be honest if it had been anyone else I would have just blown them off, but Bran had been decent enough towards me since I had taken up residence on station, and had always been willing to give good advice gained from his jazura working freelance security and protection here and in the adjacent sectors. Plus I owed him for speaking up for me to Dal last night. He hadn’t had to do that. That he wanted to speak to me about more than saving credits on repairs was obvious, which aroused my curiosity. I got the impression he had some more of that advice he wanted to share but was uncertain how to say it without giving offence.


“You didn’t get out of bed at this ungodly hour to talk about my skill, or rather lack of it making repairs Bran, what’s on your mind?”


“Last night was on my mind Arlen, I saw the move you made on Pico, that was training I know it when I see it… I’m also pretty sure you were going to kill him. Despite what you let Dal think you’d made up your mind to kill him and to hell with the consequences. I recognised that look you had in your eyes girl, no way I couldn’t. I’ve seen it too often not to recognise it when I do.” This could be a problem, and it was coming at me from a direction I hadn’t expected, to be honest I was uncertain how I should deal with it… I liked Bran.

“Whoa girl don’t you start giving me that look… personally I think you’d have been doing the verse a favour if you had killed him, I’m not criticising just saying I know what you intended is all.”

“Your point being?” I asked, still not liking what I was hearing, or that he seemed to know pretty much exactly what I’d been thinking.

“Well you seem to have your mind set on enlisting, and whilst I’m pretty sure you have your reasons for that, I wouldn’t want to see you screwing it up at the last hurdle so to speak.”

He was serious, he also seemed pretty sure I wouldn’t make the cut at the interview , he was waiting for me to ask him the reason why he thought that. “Okay Bran now you’ve got me curious, I’ve always intended enlisting, and I’ve never made a secret of it. I’ve also given it a hell of a lot of thought and preparation, so what makes you think I’m going to screw it up now?” I asked genuinely puzzled and not a little worried.

“You won’t be able to fool them the way you did Dal Arlen, I’m ex fleet myself” he admitted which surprised me though I suppose it shouldn’t have.

“They’ll catch an attempt at an evasion in the psyche test, I should know I’ve had quite a few of them myself,” he continued without saying why.

“The fact you’ve notched up so many combat kills means a psyche test is going to be mandatory for you.”

I’d suspected that would be the case and the prospect of facing the test hadn’t really worried me till now, Suzeanne had put me through them on a regular basis both before and after she had adopted me. If I could fool her I was pretty sure I could fool the fleet shrinks. “Look I appreciate what you’re saying I’ve got no intention of trying to lie to them. I was pretty much expecting a psyche test there are reasons why… but that’s my business okay?”

“Hey Arlen I’m not prying we all have our secrets, thing is if they say no, well you can always come and work with me and my crew.”

That threw me completely more so for the fact he was serious, Bran and his crew were well respected and a lot of pilots wanted to work for him. I’d never even considered asking myself, I’d always had my own plans and to be honest I doubted I was either good enough or had the experience he would want. So it was some offer, and it did give me an option if things went south with the fleet interview.

“The offer is appreciated Bran, it shouldn’t come to that, I’ll be definitely be giving you a call if it does though. Just one thing you should know… when I found myself behind that Xenon P I didn’t know it was tracking you.” I admitted not wanting him offering me a place on his team out of some sort of misplaced gratitude.

He just laughed at the suggestion, “that I don’t doubt Arlen, hell in your place I would have been too busy trying not to fill my pants trying to figure out how not to get myself killed to care what else was going on. Fact is though when you lit into that thing it showed you’d weighed up the situation correctly and knew exactly what you had to do to survive. That’s not something you can teach people. I know I’ve tried.”

There was something in his voice that told me that was the truth, and that he had watched people die because they hadn’t understood what he had tried to teach them. That haunted him I could see the pain in his eyes at the memory and guessed it had happened in his past, probably when he had been in the fleet.

“Anyways” he continued shrugging of those memories “you turned its attention away from me, and that gave me a chance to break off and get clear. The fact you didn’t know that doesn’t matter, way I figure it I still owe you. If you had panicked and tried to bug out I expect neither of us would be here now.” Seemingly without thinking about it he offered me his hand.

That took me totally by surprise, I was looking at his outstretched hand like it was toxic. What the hell was he doing!? He knew I avoided almost all physical contact? Then it hit me…. Seems he wasn’t done giving advice, I would have to get over that weakness if I was going to enlist in the fleet, and this was his way of telling me that.

Without thinking!? .... No definitely thinking about it I realised. The man saw more than I’d suspected, I grasped his wrist unconsciously using the Split style, forcing myself to remain passive as his own hand closed around mine.

“Told you I recognised training, Split right?” he asked looking at the grip I’d used, and confirming my suspicions as to why he’d offered me his hand.

“Sort of gives it away doesn’t it” I agreed, “I had a few lessons a while back. It seemed a good idea to learn how to defend myself.”

“Can’t argue with that Arlen just don’t use it less you have to, it’s the sort of thing you want to surprise people with like you did Pico. The job offer is genuine and always open to you Arlen,” he added releasing my wrist and walking off towards his own plane. That left me wondering what else the man had figured out about me.

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Sabrina Bergin





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PostPosted: Mon, 15. Jun 15, 21:31    Post subject: Reply with quote Print

Questions:

To be honest Brans admission that he had been through fleet psyche evaluations, and the fact he thought I wouldn’t be able to finesse one gave me a lot to think about as I flew over to the military outpost. That he had discerned my intention to do just that was equally troubling, he had already demonstrated his acuity this morning. So I was having to give serious thought to his advice which at this late stage left me few if any alternatives. The question was did the fleet use a more sophisticated evaluation procedure than the one Suzeanne had used?

If they did I would be taking him up on that job offer which… whilst not to be sniffed at, was not what I wanted. Decisions … Decisions. I wondered which one to make as the Mamba glided into the hanger bay on the military side of the station. Unlike the civilian traffic controllers the woman on the com link was keeping in continuous contact giving me instructions that showed she was monitoring me live on her displays. A marine was waiting for me to exit the plane on the boarding platform as I powered down in the bay with the controller giving me instructions to follow him before signing off. Following his signals I opened the canopy and climbed out of the cockpit, leaving my helmet on the seat behind me as I stepped over the edge.

“Miss Poler follow me please” were the only words he spoke as he led me from the hanger, and through various levels and corridors to the Induction centre.

That’s where he left me in the hands of the admin clerks who made sure I had signed all the appropriate papers before they in turn handed me over to the medical staff. I lost my clothes almost straight away and was given a skimpy hospital gown to wear for the examinations. I’m not particularly keen on walking around practically naked in public, that being said I was slightly irritated that the people prodding and poking me gave me as much regard as they might a slab of beef. I was ushered through one examination room after the other and was examined and scanned multiple times over the next stazura. Before I could actually freeze to death I was finally given a set of coveralls to wear and asked to take a seat in what the nurse said was the final examination room.

There was a single occupant sat behind a desk in the room and a single empty chair opposite him. It was a psyche evaluation chair. I had anticipated being seated in one at some stage in the examinations and recognised it instantly. One just like it had been a part of my room’s furniture in Suzeanne’s apartment for as long as I could remember. She had sat me in it countless times whilst she monitored my progress, as she had put it. I looked it over as best I could as I approached it, but if there were any differences between this and the one she had used on me I couldn’t see them.

“You have seen this type of device before I take it?” The man asked seeing my obvious recognition of it for what it was.

I made my decision for better or worse just hoping Bran had been right. So we got into it one question leading onto the next, by the time he was done he knew more about me than I was comfortable with, more than anyone other than Suzeanne ever had. I was dripping with sweat by the end of them, and struggling to keep my emotions under control.

That the interview was over was evident when a marine entered the room and escorted me to a larger one where a group of other potential Cadets were gathered.

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