Friday, September 28, 2012

Vengeance – Part 5

OK, I’m setting this to auto-post on Friday as I’m having a long weekend on the Indian Ocean undertaking my other hobby, scuba diving.

As always, if crap fan fiction is not your thing, I’d recommend this post at "Where The Frack Is My Ship" for your reading pleasure.

Fly deadly and have a good weekend o/

Vengeance – Part 5

"This belt looks OK, we'll sit here see if anyone turns up."
Antoine "Nutz" Tannor and Davad "Sinner" Shorner manned the helm and tactical stations of the Moa class cruiser ‘Darkness’. Theirs was the first job, if anyone came into the belt they needed to get the ship into range and disable it's warp drive before it could escape. They didn't need to wait long. Unbeknown to them, an assault frigate had been chasing them for the last three jumps.
"Harpy class assault frigate on scan. It's on short range, get ready."
The Moa class cruiser went to battlestations.
"Nutz, Sinner! I want this ship in range and pointed within seconds of it landing, if you frack it up you'll be sorry." the captain said menacingly.
"Harpy landing sir. It's a pod jockey!"
"I don't care, go for it. We're bigger!"
"Yes sir, approaching and locking target."

As the targeting computer locked onto the capsuleer’s ship and tactical data flashed up on the bridge’s main view screen. Nutz and Sinner looked at each other in shock when they saw the name of the capsuleer.
"It's coming for us! We're being targeted. FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!" screamed the captain.
The asteroid belt lit up in a blaze of hybrid blaster fire. Anti-matter charges were being fired from both ships. Whilst the smaller guns on the Harpy were not having a huge effect on the Moa’s considerable shields, they were dropping slowly. The big problem for the Moa was that it's larger guns were struggling to track the small and manoeuvrable frigate. They were having great difficulty landing a shot on target.
"Sir, we cannot hit it. Most volleys are completely missing. Our shields are down to 30%. The guns cannot track it at that speed this close."
"Keep firing!"
The Harpy continued to fire on the Moa in a fast, close orbit. The Moa's heavy neutron blasters simply could not hit such a small and fast target whilst the smaller blasters on the Harpy continued to damage the Moa.
"Armour failing captain. We’re taking structural damage. Damage control is holding us up for now but we are detecting hull breaches. The Harpy is at 90% shield. We've lost this fight."
"OK, all crew abandon ship." Sighed the captain pressing the required codes on his console to sound the evacuation.
The bridge crew calmly moved to the escape pod and strapped themselves in. Whilst the ship was clearly lost, the small guns of the Harpy were taking time to finish off the crippled cruiser. The bridge escape pod seated all 15 bridge crew and gently accelerated from the burning Moa. They felt the shockwave as the Moa exploded.
"Fracking Eggers!" the captain moaned. Murmurs of agreement circulated around the escape pod.

Suddenly the pod lurched and the bridge crew hung onto their seats as the pod tossed and turned. After a few seconds of violent movement there was a loud metallic crash as the escape pod landed with a jolt onto the deck of the Harpy's cargo bay and settled.
"What the frack is going on?"
The captain unfastened his safety belt and went to a view port.
"Well, obviously we're in the Harpy's cargo bay but I don't see anyone about..... wait.... what the…….. are those dogs loose in the cargo bay?"
"No!" said one of the Minmatar bridge officers "They are not just dogs, they are Slaver Hounds, and they look hungry!"

A sharp crackle broke the silence as the escape pods communications system activated.

"Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. As you've probably noticed, there is a pack of starving Slaver Hounds loose in my cargo hold. I'd like to ask you for a favour. Could you throw Nutz and Sinner out so my hounds can be fed."
Everyone in the escape pod turned to the two looking quizzically. Nutz and Sinner had both gone white in fear. The captain shook his head.
"No chance egger and how do you know those two officers?" he yelled.
"That's not important. You are not going to throw them out then? Oh well, that's a shame. I have no issues with the other 13 of you in that pod. I suppose you ARE all pirates in the end, and that justifies your deaths, I suppose. Mak, doesn’t look like are going to do it, you can get started."
An eerie silence descended over the crew. It lasted a few seconds before they became aware of a rhythmic pounding. It started to get louder and closer. The crew rushed to the side of the pod it was coming from. Out of the gloom of a dark corner of the hanger a MTAC emerged. A hulking exoskeleton used mostly in construction works. The man strapped into its centre looked insignificant against the bright yellow metallic limbs of the four metre tall walker. One arm flared brightly with a plasma cutting torch. The MTAC approached the pod and placed the torch against the hull. The crew stepped back as they watched the metallic wall blister from the intense heat from the cutting torch.

"WHAT ARE YOU DOING!" screamed the captain.
"Opening a can of food up for the puppies. As you won't feed them, I have to." the voice boomed through the comms system.
The MTAC had soon opened a two metre long slit in the side of the escape pod. The flame now turned ninety degrees as the operator continued cutting an opening.
"Captain, no offense but I don't want to be eaten alive." said one of the bridge officers.
"Yeah, especially as he only wants those two!" said another with panic in his voice.

“They’ll be through that bulk head in minutes!” screamed another.
"Nobody is sacrificing anyone!” the captain knew he was in a tricky situation. These were pirates he commanded and as that MTAC opened the hull, sacrificing two of their crew mates to save their own skins would likely be the preferred option to them. “What we will do is........" the captain was silenced as another officer smashed him over the back of his head with a fire extinguisher. He fell to the ground unconscious.
The MTAC deactivated its cutting torch and backed off as the crew overpowered Nutz and Sinner and threw them out of one of the emergency escape hatches.

The capsuleer floated in his pod savouring the combined sounds from the cargo bay of animal growls and screams of pain.
Over the course of the last few days Vian had covered the entire hanger array. It was just as he had been told, they were well catered for, but there didn't appear to be anyway to escape. He'd looked at the various outer doors and hatches from afar, and just like they'd said, automated sentry guns covered the escape routes, a large red line painted on the floor identified the limits of the safe area. The ones that didn't have room for a sentry gun, for example hatches in engineering access crawl-ways, had suspicious holes in the walls and floor. The older residents of "Hotel Egg" had assured him they were laser traps. Getting too close activated a spinning beam that would, and had previously, cut someone to pieces. The red stains on the deck with splatters on the walls and ceilings made Vian think twice about testing the theory.
The stores were well stocked and there was food to last them a long a time. Each sparsely furnished quarters served as well as any ship bunk that the majority of the residents were used to. It just didn't make sense to him why the capsuleer would capture some crew and hold them here.
That night he joined in a card game and the topic of conversation turned to "why?".
"I says he's working with the Blood Raiders. He's collecting us and when he has enough he'll sell us on!" said one of the captive crew.
"I say he's Amarrian. Once we reach 200 he'll sell us to a Holder as slaves and we'll be working plantations high on Vitoc for the rest of our lives!" said another.
"I say he's out for revenge."
That comment drew silence from the table. Vian turned to the old man who had said it, he was studying his cards.

"Interesting theory. What makes you say that?"
The old man didn't look up from his cards.
"Each time he's asked about the same six or seven people. He's tried to avoid killing anyone he hasn't had to. In fact just look at this place. How much do you think this is costing to run just in fuel? Three hundred? Three fifty a month? And that's millions of ISK not local credits. The food here is better than any ship I've served on. Why treat us like this? He could have dumped us somewhere much harsher and less stocked. Hell, he could have just flushed us and saved himself a cool billion over the last three months. He doesn't want to hurt us or kill us, he just wants to keep us quiet and out of the way until he's caught up with the ones he's looking for. We'll be released as soon as he's finished what he needs to finish."
Vian looked thoughtful
"Interesting. And what do you think his end game is?"
"Death. Clear as plexi-steel to me. No man does what he does unless he is out for revenge. I don't know what those men that he’s looking for did, but I's a guessing it wasn't nice. Whatever the reason, that eggers out for revenge. Anyone in his way will be sorry. For us, it's just a waiting game until he finishes."
The card game continued in almost total silence as the other players reflected on that.
Gantor flicked through the file on his datapad again. His free hand went up to his forhead and massaged the tense skin. He was getting nowhere. It was no surprise that the investigation team deemed the story circulating at that time a lie. Nobody told the same version. They were all on the same theme but different. A capsuleer engaged by the Guristas and pointed. That was generally the same in each story. But then they went from one extreme to the other. Some said they brought the capsuleer onboard and tortured him, some said it was his wife and daughter that they hurt, others said it was his favourite pet furrier. However, there was a common theme running through the stories. The same capsuleer had been caught, some wrong had been done to him whilst he was trapped in his capsule, and then the pirates had podded him. Was there any truth in any of these? A bleep sounded on his communicator.


“Sir, you still awake?” asked his aide.

“I am, what is wrong?”

“I’m on my way up to see you now sir, about that capsuleer!”

“What is it?”

“Well sir, there’s been an escalation.”


1 comment:

  1. Scuba diving ftw. Spent 3 weeks in Phuket, Thailand this summer. Did 8 days of diving with 3 dives a day.
    Enyo your diving.