Friday, July 10, 2015

Insidious - Part 2

Friday Fiction! Escape pod here. This is part 2 following last weeks piece.

Insidious Part 2

Four years later.......

Yverens slowed the vehicle and brought it to a stop outside the sprawling college. It was good to have a car again. On the station it was mostly transit and lifts.

"You'll be fine!" he said turning to his daughter who looked terrified.

She meekly nodded and opened the door. Yverens watched her climb the steps with the other students. He worried about her. She'd never been the popular girl at school. A bit of a geek and with a very small circle of friends. Moving from the station to planet-side had been hard for her. Starting college here she'd need to make all new friends.

As she disappeared inside the building he pulled away and into the traffic. It was a complete change for him too. He'd left the Federal Navy two months ago. The last few years had been hard. He had found it more and more difficult to distance himself from the death and destruction he ordered Capsuleers to carry out on a daily basis. The orders where not his own of course. They were given down through directors and executives paid a magnitude more than him. However it had still been tough in the last years. The nightmares came most nights. Hundreds of thousands had died through the contracts he brokered. Mostly pirates who decided to live on the wrong side of the law, although there was always collateral damage. He shuddered at the term. Women and children killed for the greater good whatever that was.

He and his wife had decided to take a year off work as Doure settled into college and they settled into their new lives. Two months in and his new life wasn't going at all to plan. His wife wasn't interested in him lately and his daughter had withdrawn further into herself. He was worried especially with the notifications he got when his daughter was absent. Hence why he was now driving her to college. Luckily he couldn't see what was happening inside the builting.

"Look at 'little miss Daddy was an agent' here! Probably thinks she's too good for us." the taller girl sneered.

Three of them had Doure backed into a corner. She had her bag pulled tight across her chest. The three popular girls had taken an instant dislike to her on the first day and had made the last two months hell for her.

"Please. Just leave me alone!" Doure whispered.

"Or else what? Daddy going to call an Egger on us?" the leader asked drawing a chuckle from the other two girls.

"No. You'll have to answer to me." another voice said.

All four girls looked around surprised. Doure vaguely recognized the girl who spoke. She was was leaning against the nearby lockers. Doure shared a few classes with her but never said anything to the unknown girl. She was ethnic Gallente. Raven black hair was straightened down to her shoulders. She was someone you'd call beautiful and Doure had thought how her life might be different if she'd looked like her. She also thought looking like that she'd be one of the popular girls. May be a cheerleader on the Zero-G Handball team. Someone not interested in speaking to Doure.

"Oh and what will you do?" the leader asked turning to face the other girl. Hands on hips defiantly.

The new girl looked her up and down.

"First I'll take you down with one blow. Whilst you are on the ground crying I'll break her pretty little nose" she pointed to the girl on the left. "And her..." pointing to the one of the right pausing a second "I think I'll split her lip and knock out her two front teeth."

The three girls were stunned into silence for a moment then all laughed.

"I'd like to see you try!" said the leader.

The new girl simply shrugged her shoulders and approached.

Doure watch the three bullies tense but hold their ground. The leader stood defiantly. The new girls fist moved faster then anyone could expect. The punch hit the leader in the solar plexus and she went down fast. The bully lay on the floor gasping for air looking like a fish out of water. The stranger turned to face the next girl.

"It was your nose next wasn't it before her teeth?" she asked casually thumbing behind her to indicate the other girl she had her back to.

The girl shrieked and ran. She didn't need to even look at the one behind her as the sound of fast moving heels clicked down the corridor.

"You OK?" the girl asked Doure who was staring at her former bully laying on the corridor wheezing. A small crowd of students had gathered around.

"Erm. Yes. Er. Thank you?" she stuttered.

"Don't mention it." the stranger said and casually walked off.


Doure walked into her archeology class and scanned around. She spotted the girl who had stood up to her seated near the back. She walked over.

"Hi!" Doure said nervously.

The raven haired girl looked up and smiled.

"Hi yourself." she replied in a friendly tone.

"I'm Doure."

"I know. I'm Vysena." The girl said extending a hand.

Doure took her hand and was amazed how soft her skin was. A pang of jealousy crept into her.

"Look I just wanted to say thanks again for earlier. Why did you help me?"

Vysena smiled. "Look, I know their type. Seen them before, had that type on my case before. Through trial and error I learnt that is by far the best way to deal with them. I doubt you'll have any more physical trouble. They might still talk behind your back but thats all. Take a seat." she said indicating to the empty chair next to her. Doure smiled and sat down.

The two girls started to chat.


Nex morning Yverens sat at the breakfast bar in the kitchen eating his Gallente toast in a foul mood. His wife was 'not in the mood' again last night and any moment his depressed daughter would come downstairs and depress him even more. He was wondering if he had made a mistake giving up being an agent and leaving the space station to come planet-side. At least up there they had been settled and happy. He heard footsteps down the stairs. They were fast, not like the usual begrudging trudge of his daughter. Doure practically bounced into the kitchen.

"Eggs and bacon please Winston!" she beamed at the domestic drone.

"Immediately Miss Doure." it replied in its robotic tone. Within seconds the food was frying on the big grill. Yverens had treated the family to the old-fashioned cooking device. Whilst most homes used a rad-heater Yverens always preferred his food cooked on the big old fashioned skillet. It wasn't energy efficient, it wasn't fast, it wasn't healthy but it sure made food tasty.

"Someones happy" Yverens said whilst thinking "For a change!"

"I made a friend yesterday." Doure beamed.

"Don't be a boy! Don't be a boy!" Yverens repeated in his head whilst smiling and looking interested.

"She's called Vysena and she's awesome!"

Yverens resisted breathing an exaggerated sigh of relief.

"She's an orphan. She said her family was killed but didn't go into details. She was rescued by the Sisters and is on her own. Its really sad. She lives downtown and works in a shop to pay her rent. She wants a proper education and is willing to work for it! Isn't that amazing."

Yverens nodded and smiled but was inwardly worried. This girl sounded damaged goods. The Domestic Drone placed Doure's eggs and bacon in front of her and retreated back to the skillet to clean it.

"We're going to the mall after college so no need to pick me up!" she continued between mouthfuls of food.

"I'll pick you up there if you'd like." he offered wanting to get a look at this new friend.

Doure nodded with a mouth full of food.

Yverens heard more footsteps behind. He twisted to see his wife enter with a robe wrapped around her. The look she gave him left him in no doubt he was still in the dog-house. She moved to the worktop and switched on the coffee maker. She was the only one of the three who drank coffee. Yverens marveled how even the domestic drone knew not to speak when she was in this mood. It had quietly retreated to its corner waiting to clear the plates. It was his fault and he knew it. When she turned down his advances last night for about the 60th night in a row he'd said some things he regretted. However he wasn't going to try an apologize with Doure there. He'd wait until she'd left for college and then say sorry.


The sun was starting to dip and the yellow-green of the Gallente nebula was starting to take over from the blue sky. Yverens was sat in his hover car at the mall pickup bay. Whilst he waited he thought back to earlier. He'd apologised to Slens but she wasn't happy. She put the blame on him saying the move planet-side and his pushing was to blame for her lack of interest and mood swings. They had sorted it out but there was still an air of tension. As the sun set and the night sky took over he could see the station in orbit. He turned the radio up as the jingle for the hourly news played.

"CONCORD has again protested to both the Federation and the State regarding the use of Cloned Mercenaries in the ongoing hostilities in the Black Rise Region. State Protectorate and Federal Defense Union troops have been clashing in Hasmijaala with orbital support from capsuleers. A mis-targetted orbital bombardment wiped out the settledment of Veirares with 50 colonists reported killed."

He glanced across to the exit and saw Doure walking towards him with another girl. Vysena he presumed. He quickly assessed her and wasn't massively happy with what he saw. They looked the same age. The other girl was much more fashionable albeit in a darker sense. Her glossy black hair fell to her shoulders. The short black top revealed a taut stomach. The skirt was also short and the knee-high boots sported a silver spiked heel. She looked trouble, beautiful yes, but certainly trouble. He lowered the window as they approached.

"Hi daddy!" his daughter greeted. She only ever used the word 'Daddy' when she wanted something.

"Is it OK to give Vysena a lift home?"

He glanced back at the girl who smiled. It wasn't a sweet smile, it was, if he had to name it, seductive. He felt he had no choice with her there listening and simply nodded. If nothing else he'd get to know a bit more about her. Find out if he really needed to be worried

"Shotgun!" Vysena shouted and ran around the car and jumped in the passenger seat. Doure 

"Where we going?" he asked as he pulled out into the light traffic.

"Downtown. District 12."

Yverens nodded and tried not to react. That was not a good area. Whilst he wouldn't term it either slums or ghetto, it wasn't many steps up the ladder from there. Low-cost run down hab-blocks serving the budget end of the market.

"So Doure said you were once an egger agent!" Vysena said.

Yverens looked in the rearview mirror at his daughter who just shrugged.

"Everyone knows dad. Don't worry about it."

However Yverens did worry. He tried to keep his previous life discreet. In the course of a fifteen year career as an agent millions had probably died from the missions he passed to the Capsuleers.

"I think that's cool! Making the cluster a safer place and all that." Vysena continued "Hey these seats are fantastic!" she said stretching out.

Yverens glanced at the girl. Her long legs were bare and smooth. The exposed stomach was flat with a green-stoned gold ring in her bellybutton. He looked higher, the vehicles cooling was certainly having an effect on her. He snapped his vision back to the road. Had he seriously just been eying up his daughter's new friend's breasts? He felt disgusted and for the rest of the journey kept his eyes firmly on the road.

The ride into District 12 took 20 minutes. Yverens watched as the neighborhoods became more and more run down. Gallente styling giving way to a more Caldari design approach. Functional and cheap. They were in the shadow of the space elevator now being so close to the industrial area. The massive structure dominated the view to his left.

Finally Vysena pointed out an old hab-block on a busy intersection. Yverens pulled up at the kerb. Vysena climbed out and turned and leaned back into the cab.

"Thanks for the lift Mr Catelnau . I really appreciate it. See you tomorrow Doure!"

Yverens didn't really hear as he was transfixed by her gaping top giving him a full view of her chest. Was she doing this on purpose? His daughter appeared and jumped in the front seat.

"What do you think?" she asked excitedly.

"What?" the question caught him by surprise.

"To Vysena. Isn't she great?"

"Erm, yeah. Bit of a bad neighborhood." Yverens stated as they drove off.

"Yeah but its all she can afford. The Sisters of Eve give them some cash when they leave but she's totally on her own. She says she works in a shop uptown part-time. She's got it hard. Studying and having to pay her own way." Doure said wistfully as they headed home.

Yverens was torn. The girl was having a very positive effect on his daughter. However, he couldn't shake and uneasy feeling that the girl was trouble.

To be continued...

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