On Steel Wings

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On Steel Wings

Post by Loki on Fri Feb 11, 2011 8:57 pm

Alex had just finished updating the crew roster within the data pad on his forearm when he was approached by yet another man wearing a modest suit. "Sorry, my crew has already been assembled and I'm no longer taking applicants." The man simply smiled at that statement before speaking. "Then it would seem I have arrived at the perfect time. I'm not here looking for a job, rather I'm looking for somebody who is interested in a job." The captain couldn't believe he had already landed a paying gig; he had planned on doing more digging before coming across something. Then again, he had yet to hear what the job entailed.

"I'm listening."

"My name is Jacob Land and I am the chief of medicine for the local hospital. What I'm offering is a simple delivery job to the hospital in the capital city on Odin. A man by the name of Erik Drane will meet you at the space port to pick up the cargo. We have twenty crates that need to get there ASAP and I'd rather not go through all the paperwork of the Galactic Fleet and Cargo Guild."

"A hospital? Are there any biological concerns I should be aware of before we continue?"

"None whatsoever." There was a pause as Alex awaited more information to be provided.

"Are you going to tell me what is inside the crates?"

"Afraid not. Since you are not licensed with the Guild, we feel that it will be in our best to keep the contents of the crates confidential. Furthermore, every crate is sealed and if Erik discovers that a single seal has been broken, then you will void the contract and be held financially responsible for the contents."

"You'll have to forgive my skepticism, but a man claiming to be from the hospital needs some mysterious packages delivered as quickly as possible. This doesn't exactly seem to be the most legitimate of jobs you see."

"Here." Jacob said as he reached into his pocket and withdrew a hospital ID holocard. Alex inspected the card closely to ensure it was legit before handing it back to its owner.

"Good enough for me. What does the job pay?"

"14,000cR."

Alex quirked a brow. "Under normal circumstances, that would be a reasonable offer. Instead I am to ship unknown, presumably medical contents for an entire week with only your word guaranteeing that there is no chance for a biological incident. If you're wanting to get this stuff there without having to worry about going through the proper channels, you're gonna need to sweeten the pot a bit."

Jacob's eyes narrowed in thought for several moments as he weighed his options. Eventually he relented, knowing that time was more important than money in this case. "Fine, 18,600cR and not a credit more, but it'll be your crew that does the loading and unloading, not my people."

The captain offered out his hand in acceptance and officially had their first job. Once Jacob left to retrieve the cargo, Alex opened his com link. "Yoshi."

"I hear people talking on the other side of the doors. Can I pleeeeease meet them now?"

"Did you finish reading the manual yet."

There was a pause before the meek reply came. "Not yet."

"Then you have your answer."

"Kuh-ooh duh lao bao jurn..."*

"I'm only four years older than you."

"Irrelevant!"

"Anyways, I need to you clear take-off with port control. Let them know we are heading for Odin are open to taking paying passengers. Also, get on the PA and tell everybody to meet in the commons room in five."

"Me too?"

"As long as you finished your homework."

"Fuuu-"

Alex closed the com link, cutting off Yoshimi's exclamation as he headed towards the meeting he had just set up. "Attention all crew and passengers." Yoshi's voice called out over the intercom, her tone still having a hint of frustration behind it. "Your captain requires your presence in the commons room in five minutes. I strongly advise that you don't be late." He was impressed that she managed to keep the announcement professional considering her irritation at him. Then again, she knew better than to show contempt for the chain of command around the new crew.




Alex stood at one end of the commons room facing the three couches that created an open ended box around the coffee table. Some chose to forgo the furnishings to stand or lean, but all gave him their attention. "As I'm sure you all are aware, I am Alexander Lance, captain of this vessel Mercury's Dream. Let me just make this clear, I am not concerned with whatever it is that brought you aboard my ship nor do I care about any titles or status that you may have. When you are on my ship, you are to follow my orders and ensure you do your job to earn your pay. If you feel this might be a problem for you, you know where the exit is. I am a fair man and as far as I am concerned if you're among my crew or passengers, you are family. Regardless of your gender, role, creed, or even race I will always be watching your back just as I expect you to do for me and the rest of those who reside upon my vessel. A betrayal towards anybody upon my vessel is a direct betrayal towards me, which I will take as an attempt of mutiny and will be promptly be kicked off my ship. Whether or not we are docked is irrelevant."

The sound of footsteps sounded along the stairwell in a pattern that almost suggested skipping. Yoshimi descended the stairwell into the commons room, her gaze fixated upon her omni-tool as she stood by Alex's side. "I finished the manual and even managed to get all the ships instruments linked to my omni-tool. Unfortunately, it isn't a fancy enough model to operate the ship remotely."

"Looks like you passed your test. Everybody-" Alex put his hand upon her shoulder. "this here is Yoshimi Kitsu, my second in command and pilot of Mercury's Dream." Yoshi looked up from her device, finally meeting the crew for the first time. She smiled widely and waved in a cheerful gesture "Hello, it's ni- what the fuck is that thing doing on my ship?"

"Whose ship?" Alex replied in a stern, authoritative tone that suggested the potential for menace.

Yoshi corrected herself while pointing harshly towards Faralon. "What the fuck is that thing doing on your ship?"

"That is Faralon, the ship's engineer. He will see to it that you are able to continue flying, so I advice you show him some respect."

"You're letting that Guh-tzi** into the engine room? Are you mad?!"

"Yoshi, get back to your post."

"But-"

"Yosh. Helm. Now!"

If glares could kill, Yoshi would have obliterated half of the ship with the look she shot the Kiri'ava before stomp her way back to the bridge muttering harshly under her breath. Alex waited until he could no longer hear her footsteps before continuing.

"You will have to excuse Yoshi. She really is a sweet girl, just a product of a close minded family who have yet to stop living in the past. I'm sure you all will love her, though it'll take some patience on Faralon's behalf to get there."

Alex cleared his throat to change topics. "Anyways, we already have our first assignment. We will be delivering sealed cargo to Odin, it should be arriving momentarily. With the exception of our passenger Archie, I expect you all helping to load and secure it in the cargo hold. It is very important that you are careful with the wares and they do not become unsealed in the process. I'm going to head to the helm to get our flight clearance and to calm Yoshi before sending her down to help. Thank you for your time and welcome aboard Mercury's Dream."

"Kuh-ooh duh lao bao jurn..." = "Horrible old tyrant..."*
"Guh-tzi" = Racial slur for "Pigeon"
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by quakernuts on Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:51 pm

Zack had his doubts when he had walked up to the captain about the job he was about to undertake. Yes, the captain looked capable, and his ship more so. It was simply the manner that surrounded the whole situation. The man seemed more like a simple business man, and less likely to need the skill set of someone such as him. If it wasn't for the fact that jobs were getting harder and harder for an ex-UEF sniper to grab, he wouldn't have even tried with this man. So, the fact that he was hired was surprise, but the other people he saw were even more so. Zack managed to catch a glimpse of a woman with what looked like a biotic arm, a combat droid, and even a Kiri'ava. If anything, the captain wasn't prejudiced, but Zack sure hoped that he had an idea as to what he was doing.

Zack didn't bother to stop and talk to anyone as he made his way around the ship. He was a little unfamiliar with the schematics of a Bestower, having spent most of his time on more combat oriented ships. He did remember though that the cabins were up top near the helm, so he simply took every flight of stairs upwards he could find until he managed to get to the top. From there, he simply knocked on the closest door, and seeing as no one answered, made himself at home.

Zack was used to travelling on ships, and with doing so, made the cabin his own very quickly. It was better furnished than a lot of his other job positions, but it wasn't the best he had seen either. A twin bed was where he would be sleeping, a metal footlocker sat off to the side against the wall, a nightstand accompanied by a lamp was set right beside the bed as well. Along with these, there was also a mirror hanging on the wall, and a retractable toilet that many other marines had lovingly called the 'Shit Wall'. Zack threw his pack on the bed, and started taking out all his equipment.

First came the general necessities. Soap, toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoo, etc etc etc. Next came the clothes, which he placed within the drawers of the nightstand. From there, nearly everything else went in his locker except compass and flint, which sat on top of the nightstand. First thing that went into the locker was his field medical kit, and next was his small amount of field rations. His lockpick kit went in next, and finally he started pulling out the actual weapons. A combat knife appeared from the bag next, which found a place in it's holster along Zack's hip, along with his 9mm pistol. His armour came out of the bag next, along with his targeting visor and firearm cleaning kit. He placed his armour on the hook, and set the visor and cleaning kit with the other things on the top shelf. His belts of ammo joined his armour, and finally he got to the main course.

His Precision Rifle. He had this baby for a long time, ever since he had lost his own sniper during a FUBAR raid that some idiot of a commander thought they could pull off. It wasn't exactly what he preferred to use, but it had served him faithfully over the years, and he couldn't have asked for a better weapon then this at the current moment in time. The weapon had lost it's shine, and scratches marred it's surface, proving how worn it was. On the side of the barrel the name of "Mary" was scratched onto the side. Zack always thought it was a little light hearted humour when he named his weapon. Other people thought it was the sign of a psychotic killer. Those people would be on the list, if he was the latter.

Confident the room was to his liking, despite a certain marking missing from the Shit Wall, he was about to walk out to find the rest of the crew when a voice came over the intercom.

"Your captain requires your presence in the commons room in five minutes. I strongly advise that you don't be late."

Oh good, at least he has the courtesy to talk to who his crew...unlike my last captain. Zack thought to himself, remembering the high and mighty rich man who thought he was the best bounty hunter in the universe, only to cry like a little baby when a small pirate clan attacked their vessal. He remembered where the common rooms were from his trip around the ship, and made his way there. He didn't want to miss any briefing that might hint at what their next job may be.

The common rooms were cozy in all sense of the word on board a interplanetary vessel. There were some couches all set in a semi-circle facing the front of the room. Zack happened to be one of the first there, and plopped himself on the couch. As everyone got into the room, Zack saved any conversation for later when he would be able to talk without fear of retribution from the captain. As Alex started speaking, he labelled himself out to be what seemed a fair minded captain. It wasn't until the pilot came trotting down did things start getting interesting. She was easy enough on the eyes, but her temper became very evident as she almost immediately started yelling about the engineer being a Kiri'ava. Zack did nothing but stare between Yoshi and Faralon. He was in not in the least concerned about this, but wondered just how deep that close minded integration was woven into that mind of hers. After that little episode was done, Alex apologized for Yoshi's behaviour, and told them of their first job.

It was a simple delivery job, boring but a reliable source of income granted that the goods you were transporting weren't high noteriety. Zack made his way to the docking bay with everyone else, to find the crates being delivered in a moving truck. It zipped down from above, and quickly landed with a hush of air being blown away from underneath it, and the back end opened to reveal the crates they would be moving. No one moved for an instant, and Zack clapped his hands together. "Even though I'm positive our mind powers can move those boxes inside, how about we get some excercise, hmm?" Zack looked around, and spotted the combat VI just on the other side. "Hey tinman, give me a hand with these crates."

"Of course." It replied, moving to join his stride towards the truck. Zack didn't even know the identification the droid went by, but did remember a certain command from his days in the military.

"Since I don't want to be calling you tinman everytime. Protocol Identification." Zack asked as they stepped up the ramp towards the crates.

"Therion." It replied simply, no signs that it was going to continue. Zack wouldn't have guessed it would, VI's have all the personality of cardboard, or at least, from what he had seen of them. Zack glanced at the armour, trying to make a identity to it's make and possibly what year the body was from.

"What make is your armour there?" Zack asked, adjusting his grip slightly.

"A damn sight better than yours. sir." This made Zack stop for a second, and his brows furrowed slightly at the machine. VI's weren't supposed to talk like that unless they were programmed to be just that.

"Humour coming from a VI?"

"I must be breaking your reality, huh?" The machine replied, eager to continue moving. Zack complied, but was still wrapping his head around the concept of having an AI with them in a combat chassis.

"If it wasn't broken already, you might have...AI?" Zack was pretty sure, but he wanted to hear it from the machine first.

"At your service Jarhead."

"Ex-jarhead Therion. Name's Zack. Glad to see a thinking machine will be with us."

"Glad to see a thinking human has a gun." Snarky little shit, wasn't he?

"I don't know about the thinking part, but appreciate it all the same."

"Move boxes, and you think enough for me." They reached the cargo bay of the ship, and placed the crate off to the side. Zack wiped his hands on his pants for a moment, before making to walk back out to the truck.

"You got it Tinman." Zack said in almost a bored voice, which was pretty much his regular voice once you got to know him. Zack motioned his head towards the door. "C'mon, let's grab another one."
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Crazy Hobo on Mon Feb 14, 2011 12:00 am

Feralon wasn't too taken aback by Yoshi's outburst. He had experienced many different incidents of racism in his time on Terran planets, and one way or another it worked itself out. Either the person learned that there was no reason to be racist or they simply avoided Feralon. While Feralon very much hoped that the former would be what happened, he knew that many times it was not the case. It was especially unfortunate for the pilot and mechanic aboard a ship had to work very closely together. Either then mechanic needed to make adjustments to the engines to improve performance in the middle of a hectic flight or the mechanic needed the pilot to fly a specific way in order to alter things in the engine room for various reasons. A pilot that hated her mechanic was never a good thing, and in most cases it would lead to a crash. Feralon truly hoped that he would be able to change Yoshi's mind, and quickly.

"I have been used to racism for long times, Captain." Feralon said as he stood, already on his way to the engine room. He had only taken a quick glance at it before the crew was called to the commons room, but either way Feralon thought it was beautiful. Sure, she wasn't the prettiest, best working machine out there, not even close, but from the first glance Feralon was able to almost feel her personality, and it was simply lovely, "Usually this gets worked out. Especially with pilot and mechanic. We must be close to work." With that Feralon bowed his head respectfully before heading down to the engine room once again. He would be needed when the cargo arrived, but until then he wanted to spend some time meeting with Mercury's Dream. Feralon pondered that name as he walked down to the engine room. He was not familiar with Terran lore, so the name confused him, but the word Mercury had a nice ring to it. He may not have known what the name meant, but it felt right on her. Mercury's Dream. Yes, it fit her beautifully.

Feralon arrived in the engine room a few minutes later, his eyes lighting up once he took a look at the large engines. Sure, he had seen them before, but they still looked wonderful no matter how many times he could possibly look at them they were always amazing to him. Feralon stepped around the warp drive on his way to the engines, quickly running his eyes and hands over it to make sure everything was in order. It was wonderful for a ship to have it's quirks, but if the warp drive had anything quirky about it, there was usually a big problem. Finding everything in order, Feralon stepped over to the left engine and quickly tied his arm feathers down before sliding under it. Soon Feralon was utterly lost in his work, occasionally muttering to himself in Thresh when he discovered a faulty component or when he simply wanted to talk to the ship herself. The entire time, though, Feralon kept a ear open for a message to come in that the goods had arrived. Sure his primary use was in the engine room, but he could in no way just let the others handle the cargo without even trying to help. Feralon eventually pulled himself out from underneath the left engine and was about to move to the right when he decided that it would probably be best to simply go and wait for the cargo, for he knew that one way or another he would get distracted and miss the cargo when it arrived. That was not something to do on his very first day. Quickly, he headed towards the outside of the ship, trying to find his way to where he first entered. Hopefully that would be where the cargo would be dropped off. Luckily he arrived right as the first boxes were being unloaded and wordlessly began to help move them.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Digital Muse on Fri Feb 18, 2011 7:00 pm

His meeting with the Captain of Mercury’s Dream had gone even better than Archie had hoped. But, as often was the case, money talks. He sauntered off, walking stick clicking jauntily in time with his footsteps, while his young Dane pup, Odysseus, trotted lazily at his side. A brief visit to his hotel was all that was required to set the ball rolling to get his rather extensive collection of luggage, tools and other belongings packed and transported to his new home. He was quite excited at the prospect of heading into the dark void once more. With luck, he’d come upon something truly remarkable along the way. A last, “And don’t forget the wingback, will you? It’s quite a favorite, after all.” A grunt that wasn’t overly surly indicated the men understood their job and he took his leave.

As he walked back along the dockside toward the ship, Archie and Odysseus garnered more than a few odd looks. Who the hell had a dog anymore? And not a dog, really. Practically a pony! What did he feed that thing? Archie, however, was oblivious of the stares and whispered comments. As if sensing the beginning of a new adventure, Odysseus bounded along, all gangling legs and lolling tongue. His deep-throated barks echoed off the cargo containers lining the way. Archie only absently reprimanded him, “Be a good boy, Odysseus.” He was ignored.

Finding the Mercury’s Dream, Archie strode aboard with his head down while he busied himself with packing his old, long-stemmed pipe and tried getting it lit. Clouds of fragrant smoke puffed around his head and he flicked the match to put it out. Odysseus jogged ahead of his master like an old pro and snuffled along the floor plates eagerly. They worked their way through the common area and chose the two cabins they’d occupy for the duration of their stay. Archie rocked back and forth on the heels of his feet, satisfied. “Yes. Should work very nicely, eh, Odysseus? Yes. Spot on.” His mental arranging of furniture and décor was interrupted by the pilot’s call for a meeting with the Captain. “Right-o, my lad. Off we go to meet our noble compatriots.” Archie spun on his heel and with Odysseus leading the way, he returned to the common room he’d passed through on the way to the rooms he’d chosen as his quarters.

Odysseus arrived well in advance and leapt gazelle-like over the back of an unoccupied couch, promptly claiming the entire thing for himself. Archie followed, almost the last to arrive and noted the rest of those gathered with bright, curiosity-filled blue eyes. My word! What an eclectic and interesting mix! Oh! Oh! A Kiri ‘ava. Bully! I shall brush up on my Thresh.” He only half listened to the Captain’s speech, he trusted the young man for some reason. Suddenly, a young woman bounded down the stairs to join the group. Archie immediately stood in a very outdated gesture of reverence for the fairer sex. About to introduce himself, he was cut off by Yoshi’s demand to know why the Kiri’ ava was aboard. Clearly, the young woman has no idea of the noble race. Most unfortunate, really.” Archie thought to himself. In short order, the meeting ended and the crew all went about their individual tasks, Oddie looked quite content where he was, so Archie chose to head after the Mechanical and the military man to the dock side, so he might introduce himself and ensure his own things came aboard in good order.

While the two new crew mates dealt with the cargo, Archie was delighted to see the two hover trucks arriving with his things. Chairs, a mahogany desk, a rare old Persian carpet, trunks and trunks of his archeological finds were hauled up into the ship under his direction. It was only when a long slender leather case made its appearance that Archie stepped in to take a hand directly. He plucked the weighty item from the startled dock worker’s hands deftly. “Never mind with that, my good man. Maggie can come with me.” Slinging the case over his slender tweed-suited shoulder, Archie strode languidly toward the ex-military man, ignoring the Mechanical for the time being. He shook out one of his expensive cigarette and offered the man one. “Archibald Dalmonte.” He lit up his own cigarette and offered the match to Zack. “What branch of the service were you in?” It was a classic bit of small talk to get acquainted. The way he ignored the Mech made it obvious that Archie believed it to be no more than a V.I.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Loki on Mon Feb 21, 2011 12:16 am

Yoshimi couldn't believe that Alex had sided with that thing. She sulked all the way to the helm before falling into her chair with a gruff. "Now what!" There was no way the captain would have been able to hear her, but that didn't matter. At the moment all she wanted to do was yell and perhaps smash a few things. Considering her surroundings, she figured that was why Alex sent her to the cockpit rather than her quarters. If she was in her room, she would have little reservation for throwing around a good number of things that came to mind as particularly good projectiles. Instead she was surrounded by components and equipment that ensured her escape from the monotonous life upon this planet making it impossible for her to even consider the most mild of lashing out. After a moment in the seat, she became too restless to simply stay put and immediately began pacing around with forceful footfalls.

"Spaceport to Mercury's Dream, come in please."

Yoshi reached up and grabbed the hand radio, bringing it to her lips responding with a rather sharp "Yes, what is it?" There was a brief pause as the person on the other end was clearly surprised by such a tone. "Errr... We have it listed on your ship's manifest that one Leolani Godani is aboard." She blinked, realizing that she had yet to actually be given the names of the crew. Using her omni-tool, she pulled up the file Alex had put into the ship's database containing the profiles of all aboard the vessel. "Looks like it." This time her voice was back to her normal tone as though she was never mad to begin with; a change in mood so fast that it once again threw off the port employee. "Uh huh... Well a carrier has just called in saying that she has a package and requests that you wait until he gets there in an hour for delivery." Yoshi's curiosity was piqued at what the mysteries the package contained that would warrant a dedicated delivery. Such service isn't cheap and is a good indicator of interesting stuff. "I'll run it by the captain, shouldn't be an issue though."

"Oh yes, and we did come across a person who was interested in being transported to Odin. One Illia Hastor."

"Sounds good, send her this way so the captain can evaluate her."

"She says that she has already met with Captain Lance."

"Oh... Well alright then. Send her aboard, we'll see that her cabin is waiting."

A minute after hanging up the receiver Alex walked into the room, taken aback by the pleasant smile on Yoshi's face. "Yosh... Everything okay?"

"Of course, why wouldn't it be?"

"Well... uhh... no reason I suppose?" Alex clearly still had trouble keeping up with Yoshi's personality.

"Oh, just got off the comm with port. A package is on its way for Leolani and your other passenger is on her way."

"What other passen-"

"I'm off to mingle with the crew!"

Before Alex's mind could catch up, Yoshi had already skipped out of the helm and well on her way to the runway.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Gunneh on Mon Feb 21, 2011 4:53 am

James looked at the crates that needed to be off-loaded into their cargo hold with the same look of disdain that a dog gives a cat upon first contact. He pulled a cigarette from his pack and lit it slowly, his eyes never leaving the crates. So, we meet again, heavy things, he thought, inspecting the situation as best he could. You've embarrassed me on so many other occasions, but I will have my revenge this time! He flexed his arm muscles, trying to prove his worth to no one in particular, but he barely felt his muscles twitch in the slightest.

"Yep," he said, exhaling a lung-full of smoke, "I'm going to be as useful as a blind boxing referee. I can already feel it."

He squinted, pushing his mind into overdrive as a solution started to form: It all came down to a simple math equation. He chuckled heartily and lifted his Omni-Tool closer to his face and began working the equation out. Yes! It was so simple! "Well, ain't that just the shiniest bit of anything you ever saw," he said with a smirk, sucking in another lung of smoke. All he needed to do was get something that could support the weight underneath the crate just along the back, right-hand corner to use as a lever, apply a little bit of pressure, and-

"Send the gorram crate toppling out onto the floor of the cargo bay," he said with another sigh. "*Na mei guan xi."

He ground out the cigarette against the heel of his shoe and stuffed the butt into his pocket to get rid of later before looking around to the rest of the crew that stood around him. "Anyone wanna come help my stupid ass lift these piece of shit crates before I hurt myself or whatever happens to be in them?"

*In that case, nevermind.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Shadow Moonseye on Tue Feb 22, 2011 9:36 am

Good t’ know he ain’t some shimmershit. Got enough of ’em flyin’ around the Void. Leolani’s heavy footfalls carried her through the ship, the solid thuds of the floor underfoot sounding out a welcome to the former rock rat. From what she heard it had a good voice, the ship, strong and deep. She couldn’t make a final call on the Mercury’s Dream until she heard her sing though. When they were flying through the Void, only then, would she make it.

Still, fucking nice t’ have a solid fucking job. Been a floater too damn long. Seven months without work, living off savings, with nothing but time to think had been its own special kind of hell for her. Hated sitting around on my ass all day. No fightin’, no drinkin’, no work; fuckin’ UEF stiffbacks ridin’ my ass at every port… Letting out an irritated snort, the woman came to stop at the top of the stairs, looking at the doors that lined the hall.

“Bossman said I get pick of the rooms.” She shrugged with her right shoulder, then turned and chose the first door to her left. The door slid shut behind her and she took a moment to over look the room. It was fairly bare, but a damn sight better than the ships she’d served on. At least they all got their own rooms and some semblance of privacy. Many vessels she’d been on crew quarters were just a room full of bunks with a wall of lockers for personal belongings.

Bed, nightstand, mirror, squatpot, locker. “I can work with this.” She crossed to the bed and dumped her pair duffel bags on it. Having spent most of her adult life bouncing from ship to ship and crew to crew, she quickly settled into the all too familiar routine of making the space her own.

Booze was the first thing unpacked, followed by the clothes she had used to help cushion the bottles. The three bottles of liquor went into the bottom drawer of her nightstand, with the clothes thrown in on top of them. Next came the packs of beer, which she stowed under the edge of her bed--easily within reach, but out of the way. Following that she unpacked the general amenities, being sure to stuff the chapstick in a pocket, almost everything found its unceremonious way into the top two drawers of the night stand. Her tool kit she set next to the nightstand, with the first aid kit ontop of it. Finding the first duffel bag empty, she tossed it under the bed and opened the second.

“Now there’s my gleams.” She chuckled and carefully lifted out her Zero-G Propulsion Pack, taking it over to the locker and hanging it from the hook. Moving back to the bed, she unpacked her combat knife, the matte blade sliding easily in and out of its sheath. “Gonna hold on t’ you, little star.” Surprisingly nimble fingers quickly strapped the sheath to her right thigh; the blade snugly slid home a moment later. Cracking her knuckles, she eyed the pair of C4 charges under her care, weighing the best spot to stow them. “Bottom of the locker f’r you.”

Her shotgun, ammunition, and firearm cleaning kit were pulled out and stored carefully in the locker as well, before she shut the door and moved back to remove the last items from her duffel bag: The charging dock for her arm, back and chest support plates, and the joint shield. The dock she handled more carefully than she would a small child. If it broke, then 96 hours later she might as well space her arm for all the good it would be. It found a home atop the nightstand, dominating the surface. The joint sheild was casually shoved under the foot of her bed; well clear of the beer. The support plates the former miner donned with the ease three plus years of near constant use brought.

Satisfied that all her belongings were unpacked, Leolani tossed the duffel bag under her bed to join the first. She made for the door, intent on seeing who else the captian had hired for crew, only to be interrupted by an announcment.

"Your captain requires your presence in the commons room in five minutes. I strongly advise that you don't be late."

Talker, ain’t he? Good, hate bossmen who pass orders down. Plentya clusterfucks caused by that. She left her room and headed down the stairs, the sound of another door following her footsteps, and headed down to the commons room. Really get t’ see how the bossman is now. Seemed capable enough before.

The commons were nice, she found, more comfortable than the metal and plastic benches that served on the mining ships. Cushy place. Nice change. Just gotta hear you sing, now. The last thought she directed at the ship, giving the wall she leaned against an affectionate pat with her organic hand. She watched as the others arrived, brow quirked at the mismatched lot of them. When Captian Lance made his appearance, she turned her attention fully to him, listening to his speech. Down came the pilot and second in command, who at the sight of the Kiri’ava pulled a mood swing faster than rock rat on leave. Alexander ordered her back to the helm swifty and sternly; apologizing when she had disappeared up the stairs.

"You will have to excuse Yoshi. She really is a sweet girl, just a product of a close minded family who have yet to stop living in the past. I'm sure you all will love her, though it'll take some patience on Faralon's behalf to get there."

“Sweet like a duster out Too Far with no squeeze.” Leolani muttered under her breath.

The captian continued, telling of their first job and thanking them for their time before sending them on their way. She made her way with everyone else to the docking bay, arriving just intime to see the hauler drop down and open up for them to retrieve their cargo. No one jumped to it, and one of the men clapped his hands.

"Even though I'm positive our mind powers can move those boxes inside, how about we get some exercise, hmm?"

Leolani laughed, the sound loud over the quiet that had followed the group from the commons room. The sound seemed to set everyone to action, as the man moved off with the tinman and everyone else started to pair off to haul the crates. A pair of trucks arrived and an older man who could only be their passenger went to direct their unloading. Another man looked the crates up and down, before pulling out his Omni-Tool and set to work on it. A moment later, he ground out his cigarette and looked around.

"Anyone wanna come help my stupid ass lift these piece of shit crates before I hurt myself or whatever happens to be in them?"

Leolani stepped forward and offered a smirk. “Best stand back an’ let me handle them.” She stepped around the man, twisting her bionic arm so that the dial to change modes was exposed. She gave it a quick turn to set it at High Stress and rolled her shoulders. “Wouldn’t want ya t’ damage the goods.” She called over her shoulder before grabbing a crate and lifting it with a grunt. She carried it to the cargo bay, set it down, and quickly made her way back out to dive in the work with a relish.

Ah, heavy lifting. How I’ve missed you.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Guilty Carrion on Tue Feb 22, 2011 10:00 pm

Therion had never really had the pleasure of riding on a Bestower before, but there was recognition of the ship’s popularity in his head. The armour on her was quite thick, and it was his honest belief that one could never have enough protective slabs between you and the guns of your foes. Still, what had possessed a man like Alex to go for this? He seemed more of the…merchant type. His thoughts drifted over reasons, as his feet carried him absentmindedly through the halls, metal steps echoing a steady rhythm to accompany the machine’s passage. On the subject of the captain, the man seemed like he knew what he was doing, or at the very least was stumbling his way through this with a hell of a lot of luck.

Maybe some rubbed of on me…could have easily failed that test of his. Some part of him, not that he’d ever admit it, found the test to be disheartening, but the AI forced that part of him into the recesses of his mind to be dealt with later. Now was the time to get ‘settled’ in, as superfluous as that was for him, he still needed to find himself a room and claim it. With that in mind, he tracked down the nearest set of stairs, and started going up. Along the way, he spotted what could only be a Kir’ava, and if the android had had a brow, it would have been raised quite high. Regardless, he gave the alien a nod (although he wasn’t sure it was paying much attention to him) and continued upwards.

The retreating backs of two others signalled the occupied rooms, and he simply snagged the last room on the left for his own. There wasn’t much to it, but then again, he didn’t need much, now did he? Un-slinging the large storage ‘crate’ from his back, Therion placed it by the wall to unpack later. Placing the small duffle bag caring his scant belongings on the bed, it was unzipped promptly, and it contents given a quick once over. The 9mm was removed first, checked, then double checked, and a quick clip popped into place, before he slipped it into the small holster built into the side of his leg. The ammo was carefully removed, before being tucked up into the top shelf of the locker, followed closely by the cleaning kit. On the shelf below, a rather worn and well used repair kit went, before the locker was shut, and his attention went else where. The beer, although he was beginning to question the wisdom in buying it, was tucked unceremoniously under his bed, before the duffle bag promptly joined it.

With one last look over the room, the droid departed to the hall. The helm would be a good place to check next, see the condition, and maybe catch the pilot if they were about. As he moved to open the door, however, an intercom interrupted. "Attention all crew and passengers. Your captain requires your presence in the commons room in five minutes. I strongly advise that you don't be late." The young woman’s voice echoed slightly, and with a quick peek through the small port into the helm, he caught a brief glimpse of movement from the pilot’s chair, but nothing really came into view.

All the same. Probably just meet her later. Heading off down the hall, he fell into step behind a tall woman with a rather impressive looking mechanical arm. Her stride and pace suggested no hindrance from the arm, boasting what likely was formidable strength. Natural, or did she work at it? A quick glance downward, and a moment of silent observation(he was immensely grateful she didn’t have that sixth sense most women always seem to have, as this wasn’t the best first impression he could make) and it was clearly worked for.

As they entered the commons, he stood behind the center couch, watching as the captain explained the ground rules of the ship. All of which where extremely reasonable, more so than the old military ships he’d seen back in the day. He spared a glance towards the stairwell, only to focus much more intently on the young woman that emerged from it, happily typing away at her data pad.

Yoshimi Kitsu. It was easy to recognize her voice from the intercom earlier. She smiled brightly, and he was about to raise a hand in greeting when her demeanour slipped into hostility at the sight of the Kir’ava to his left. The outburst was stifled quickly by the captain, and she left in a fit.

One of those old families, huh? Reminds me of the War…still, nothing exposure won’t fix. It joined his discarded thoughts for the day, as the captain explained their first job, which had fallen ever so conveniently into their lap. Transporting crates. Not exactly elegant, but it would put cash in the pocket, and food in the others bellies. Alex disappeared upstairs, and the group set off towards the bay.

One of the crew set them to work, before calling the AI over to help him. The man didn’t seem to have clued in on his sentience, and with a subtly hidden chuckle, Therion decided to play along for now.

“Therion.”

They lifted the box in unison, and started off towards the ship. It really wasn’t that heavy, the droid was fairly certain he could have lifted it himself, but it was an excuse to talk. A moment or two of silence reigned, before the man, a soldier by the look of him, spoke again.

"What make is your armour there?"

"A damn sight better than yours. Sir." There was some confusion, and it was all he could do to suppress a chuckle.

"Humour coming from a VI?"

"I must be breaking your reality, huh?" It felt good to jab with a fellow soldier again, the AI admitted, although it was a little lopsided at the moment.

"If it wasn't broken already, you might have...AI?" Now there, was a curious answer if he ever heard one, but now likely wasn’t the best time to go hunting for the reason behind it.


"At your service Jarhead."

"Ex-jarhead Therion. Name's Zack. Glad to see a thinking machine will be with us."

"Glad to see a thinking human has a gun." A little sharp, perhaps, but a fair enough statement considering some of the people he had met in the past. Zack seemed far more capable than them.

"I don't know about the thinking part, but appreciate it all the same."

"Move boxes and you think enough for me." They reached the cargo bay of the ship, and placed the crate off to the side. He started to move back the way they had come as the soldier responded.

"You got it Tinman." Before the two could get going though, the odd English man swooped in from nowhere and ambushed Zack with a cigarette and some vague small talk. With a soft chuckle, he stepped soundlessly out of the bay, and back into the halls.

So far, the crew was shaping up to be quite the collection of oddities. Although that man was seriously trucking for the top spot with the way he dressed. As he moved on down the hall, the robot paused, and looked off behind him. Wait. I think the exit is this way… Lost in thought as he was, the AI didn’t hear the rapid approaching hop-skip of the pilot, so when the loud “Thunk!” sounded, it came as a bit of a surprise.

Therion blinked(as strange as that might seem from a shell with no eyelids) at the sudden force colliding with his 'sternum', not enough to really move the machine, but enough to make him give pause. The pilot wobbled back from their collision, and started to complain before noticing what she had run into. "Sorry. I didn't hear you coming. Are you alright?"

"I'm fine. Though if this becomes a regular occurrence, one of us should start sporting gym matting." She says as she knocks on Therion's metallic chest. "I guess it would be a little cliché to make abs of steel joke right about now, huh?"

He chuckled quietly at her, the sound a little grating as it emerged from his ‘vox’. “It might be, but you’d be surprised at how many people still make it regardless.” The soft hum of parts moving accompanied his arm as it extended to offer a handshake. “Never really got a chance to properly introduce myself. Therion. It’s a pleasure to meet you, Miss Kitsu.” Of all the times a smile would be useful; these were generally the most annoying ones. First impressions were horribly difficult when you didn’t have a proper face.

Yoshi looks at the offered hand, shakes her head, and moves in for a quick hug. "Nice to meet you, though no need to be so formal. Just call me Yoshi."

There wasn’t much of a way to react to that. Not really. With all the grace of a turtle, the AI awkwardly returned the small woman’s hug. “Yoshi. Right. I’ll try to keep that in mind.” There was no real time to ‘relish’ the contact, nor any real way to really enjoy the hug, as much of a shame that was. Nothing more than a pressure on his shell. “Well, if I’m not mistaken, you were on your way outside. Mind if I tag along?”

"I was actually on my way to meet up with you all, but if that's where we're headed, then I certainly would enjoy the company."

“Perfect. Shall we then?” She led the way back to the exterior, although he made careful note of the route used so he wouldn’t get turned around again. With a quick wave, she hurried off to get to work, and Therion moved to fetch a crate. Passing by the woman with the mechanical arm, he gave her crate a solid pat as she passed. “An I.B.A. Mk II, right? A very nice model.”

"Get's the job done, Tinman. Ain't shiny like you, but fuck if I don't love it." He gave a laugh as she continued on, calling at her back.

“If you want it shined, lemme know, and I’ll loan you some wax. It’ll cost you a story though!”

"Ha! Might take you up on that, Tinman!"

With another laugh, he grabbed another crate and hoisted it off the ground, starting the journey back to the cargo bay once again.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by quakernuts on Fri Feb 25, 2011 12:49 am

Zack didn't mind the AI, in all honesty, it was a change of pace. He had always heard about them and wondered, but never had he actually met one. His curious was sated, and he was ready to get back to work. As he turned around though, the passenger that was aboard their ship, carrying what looked to be gun case, came wondering up to him. The man stopped in front of him, and took out a pack of smokes. Zack's eyes were more trained on the gun case, wondering as to what could possibly be the weapon of choice to what looked like a professor or archaeologist. The man offered Zack a smoke and spoke, and only then did Zack notice that Therion had disappeared on him. Oh well, he wasn't his mom.

"Archibald Dalmonte." He lit up his smoke with what looked like an old fashioned match that hadn't been used for years before offering it to him. "What branch of the service were you in." Zack looked over the smoke in his hands, looking hesitant and it was obvious as to the reason why. He didn't smoke, but he didn't want to be rude either. With the match still burning in the man's hand, Zack answered his question.

"Zack Terrou, Archie. I'll have to apologize, but I don't smoke." Zack said, handing the cigarette back to the man as he gave him a sharp look, no doubt for the name. "As for the branches, I've been in a few. I was PIA, then marines, then special forces sniper...in that order." Zack was used to people asking what branches he was in, he didn't care that much. It was when people started saying they knew people in those branches and asked if he knew them was when he started to not care about the conversation. He hadn't been in the military for a few years now, that should be obvious, and he got tired of people overlooking that fact. Archie took the smoke back, and casually flicked the match out. His attention seemed focused elsewhere as his gaze went from Zack to damn near the entire ship. Even as the man spoke, it was clear his attention wasn't entirely focused.

"Yes, yes good work that. Mhmm, you don't say. Most interesting." Then Archie seemed to remember some long distant memory, and started going on about it. "I remember the time I was hunting with the First Royal Fusilliers. Jolly good lot of boys they were." He paused, and looked back at Zack. "Before your time, of course, my boy." Archie seemed a bit more attentive after that. "A sniper you say? Odd the captain bring you aboard. Here's hoping the captain doesn't intend to start a war eh what?' Archie laughed heartily, but Zack only managed a half smirk.

Others might have taken offence to the whole 'odd you're on board' comment, but Zack understood it. This was a merchant ship, but the fact was that it was a dangerous void out there. Yeah, they had Therion, the one ton death dealer, but other than that, no one else here looked to have any sort of combat experience. The man was odd, Zack would give him that. "No one likes to look for battles Archie, I know I don't." Archie seemed to think about this through a couple of puffs from his smoke. Then nodded at the comment.

"Quite right m'boy. No one ever truly wins a war, do they? But..." His eyes seemed to twinkle with something that seemed close to madness. "The glory of some battles can't be denied, eh?" Zack actually gave that comment a small laugh, but not because he found it funny, but because he found it ironic. This guy was talking glory to a guy who only cared about getting the job done.

"If glory is your thing, then yes, I suppose so. I'm a sniper though, glory has never been on my list of reasons to fight." Zack let the thought hang for a moment. Zack's eyes finally drifted back to the gun case, and he still couldn't grasp what could be in it. "I have to ask, what kind of gun are you carrying? I don't recognize that case for any modern weapons."

Archie seemed to nod sagely at Zack's comment. "True enough. There is no honour in today's combat, not in the truest sense." Zack wanted to say something to that, but held his tongue as the man sighed. "You never see your enemy anymore...just hulking great metal shells that hide every bit of...heart." The man shook his head sadly, and Zack wanted to tell him that it was quite the opposite if you were army, but felt that would be a worthless argument. "Can't look anyone in the eye anymore."

Archie flicked the butt away, and seemed to remember Zack's question. "Oh this?" His tone suddenly got lighter, and his eyes flickered with excitement as he crouched and opened the case to reveal an ancient weapon, one that Zack had never seen before. "Miss Maggie. Yes. The finest bit of handcrafted firearms ever to come out of the old Empire. Belonged to my great-great grand father." Archie lifted the weapon and Zack could tell the weapon was incredibly well maintained. "It's a Bland, London 8-Bore Double Rifle." He murmured, almost like he was revering the weapon. The walnut stock was furnished to a dull sheen from loving care and regular use, and it's double barrel shone bluely in his surprisingly capable hands. "She's never failed me. Not once."

Zack didn't even know they used real wood on weapons anymore, let alone that one even looked capable of any sort of damage. Zack held out his hands to hold the weapon, being a sniper, he had a very high respect for any such device. Archie seemed to hesitate on the decision, obviously very fond of his given tool of destruction. Eventually he handed it over, making sure to add his own commentary. "She's got a bit of a heft there...Yes hold it...That's right, gently now." Zack simply smiled where others would have rolled their eyes. He found it funny how the man cared so much for a single weapon. Archie watched his every move as Zack looked down the sights, tested the weight, and eventually checked the breech. The weapon had a lot more weight then he expected, but it was made with real wood. Zack handed the weapon back to him.

"I can honestly say I haven't met a weapon quite like that one. A rare find indeed." Zack looked past Archie back towards the docks, and nodded towards them. "As much as I enjoy your company Archie, I have a job to do. It's been nice meeting you." Archie took the weapon, disassembled it, and replaced it within it's confines of the weapon's case.

"Yes, of course. Of course. I shouldn't have kept you. Very good to meet you. We'll share a brandy of a night, I'll wager." Archie said as Zack walked away. He waved to him with two fingers as he walked away, wondering how much time he had wasted not getting the job done. Ok, not wasted, simply not put to more productive uses. As he walked back to the crates, he saw that nearly all of them were loaded up, just a couple still waiting in the trucks. Zack then sidestepped to avoid a woman with a mechanical arm hauling a crate by herself up to the loading decks.

"Careful, you might break something." He turned to walk away, then added loud enough for her to hear. "Like the crate." His tone was casual and sarcastic, easily readable as not serious as he walked to one of the crates. He noticed that the Kiri'ava was hauling crates around as well, and Zack motioned for him to come over. He simply pointed to the other end of the crate, not knowing how much English the bird knew. He remembered his name as Feralon, but nothing else. Together, they continued unloading the crates.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Chainlinc3 on Sat Feb 26, 2011 10:37 am

Illia Hastor stood just outside the Mercury's Dream, giving it's hull another once-over, with more detail than when she had first applied as a crew member. After all, now she was about to trust her life to this hulk of a ship. She brought up her omni-tool, and did a quick check of the ship-- evidently, the captain's "tech expert" hadn't started their duties yet, because it was child's play to access the ship's systems and execute their auto-report methods. Weapons, while few in number, were within acceptable standards of operation. The same was true of engines, comm systems, life support, and the FTL drive-- the only thing out of the ordinary was the generator, which was providing about 12% more power than it should. Still, that was reasonable-- the ship had just been purchased, meaning that the generator was likely either new or recently refurbished, and since the danger of over-supplying power outweighed the danger of under-supplying power, many generators were designed to provide above required capacity on the premise that they would lose output over time. Satisfied, her omni-tool blinked off and she looked the ship over. The Bestower was a beautiful model, from an engineer's perspective at least-- built for sturdiness, there was room on it's chassis for redundant redundancies of most major systems. If, of course, its owner was willing to sacrifice some cargo space. She sighed, then decided to track down the captain. Might as well let him know that she's a paying passenger and not a psychotic stowaway. Activity seemed congregated around the loading bay, and so she headed there herself.

A short walk around the ship later, and she was no closer to finding Captain Lance. Several people, whom she assumed were the crew, unloaded boxes cheerfully, but there was no sign of the captain. She quickly weighed her options. She could ask one of the crew, be social, maybe pave the way for a friendship, and then make a lame joke and make them think she was just another creeper. OR she could wander around blindly and hope she found the captain before he found her and jumped to conclusions.

"Wandering it is."

She gave the crew a quick look as she climbed the stairs out of the cargo bay-- a VI exhibiting odd behavioral patterns was of most interest to her, but Kiri’ava and a woman with a cybernetic arm were close seconds. By and large, they seemed too busy to pay her much attention, which was just as well. A captain's natural place was at the helm of the ship, and she remembered the ship's basic layout from the systems analysis she ran earlier. At the top of the stairs, see glanced around to get her bearings quickly, then ducked through the shuttle deck into what looked like the engineering bay-- it was rather spacious, but well organized as far as she could tell. Up another two flights of stairs, and she found herself in a hall leading to what she believed was the helm. Doors bordered the hallway--three on each side-- and she could see the captain seated in the bridge, tapping away at a console.

"Captain Lance?"

He hit a few more keys, then turned to look at her. His expression flickered from brief confusion to recognition and then distrust.

"Yes?"

Illia knew that now was the time for her to speak for herself, impress the captain, or at least build a modicum of trust. Her mind whirled though possible ways to explain the situation, and finally settled on one.

"I just wanted to check in, so you know I'm psychotic or something-- I mean, not psychotic, I'm not a psycho, really!"

Captain Lance stared at her blankly.

"I… I needed a lift to Odin because there's no work left here, and I checked in at the port, and they told me that they had a ship, so I asked which, they told me it was this ship, and I asked if there was another because you know it's kinda awkward to be on a ship with someone who turned down your job application and all the people who WEREN'T turned down but they didn't have any ships scheduled to leave for Odin for another couple weeks, so I decided I'd just deal with it, and now I'm here trying to make sure you don't mistake me for some psychotic stowaway and end up spacing me halfway through the trip."

It took a moment for Captain Lance to process all that, and Illia was blushing furiously.

Way to go. You're the EPITOME of normal.

"So you were the passenger Yoshi told me about. Fare is 1000cR, half up front and half once we enter Odin's orbit. You can afford this, yes?"

Not trusting her voice, Illia nodded vigorously.

"Your room will be down two flights of stairs from here. I'm unsure which room our current passenger has laid claim to, but I assume you'll be able to find at least one room unlocked for you to hole up in."

She nodded a couple times, then spoke in a slightly-choked voice.

"Alright. Thanks."

With that, she was down one flight of stairs and leaning against a wall.

I shouldn't be this upset. It was no big deal. He probably understands.

Another part of her, the part she preferred locked away, agreed with her.

He understands perfectly-- you're an unstable, socially outcast hacker who hasn't had a real friend in years. On top of that, you're about as sociable as an VI, but without the practical use. There's a REASON he didn't want you on this ship, Illia.

Blinking back a few tears, she lashed out with one arm, slamming it against the unyielding form of the ship. Pain shot up her arm, and she rubbed her newly injured limb, frowning. There was no reason for her to be this upset. She'd goofed her first--er, second impression, sure. She'd goofed dozens of times before. She just had to pull herself together, and keep moving. It was easy, when you knew how. Illia didn't.

There was nothing she could do about it now. She pushed away from the wall, and headed for the stairwell. Another flight of stairs down, and she looked around, eventually choosing the room on the corner next to what seemed to be the infirmary. It didn't take her long to settle in; she travelled light. She couldn't say she'd miss the old shuttle she used to planet-hop in-- far too cramped really, and it was too slow for many interplanetary flights to even be considered, much less inter-system flights. Still, it had been cheap, and it got the job done.

With nothing to catch her interest in the room, she simply flopped on the bed and tried to sooth her nerves the best way she knew how. Accessing her omni-tool, she started issuing commands to the low-power VI that inhabited it. Ares, as she had taken to calling it, was a relatively simple piece of technology, but it could execute brute-force attacks far more efficiently than she could, and could even put together some basic scripts when needed. Usually though, she only had it (or he, as Illia had taken to thinking of it as) search through servers while she focused on keeping her connection open and secure.

"Ares, connect to that IP we found buried on the NuSec server. They had that marked as a mercenary network, right?"

The screen blinked with a simple "Affirmative" and then presented a plain page with a text field dead center.

"Password, password, password…"

She brought up the page's source code and began searching for scripts she could access. Finding none, she tried a few common permutations on the IP and found a terminal.

"Jackpot."

Her fingers flew across the keys, and pages flickered across her omni-tool's display. She was at home here, in her element. She was happy.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Digital Muse on Tue Mar 01, 2011 1:17 am

Once Maggie was returned to her protective case, Archie considered the other crew members, but they looked too busy to interfere with for the time being. Even the Kiri ‘ava had come to the docks to help with the loading. The Captain and volatile pilot, however, must still be aboard. He should introduce himself properly to the young lady. As he walked smartly up the steel gangway into the ship, he plucked an antique gold watch from his waistcoat pocket and brightened. “Oh splendid. Almost time for tea.” The watch was tucked away once more and Archie’s brows furrow in concern, “I do hope grandmama’s tea service came aboard in good order.” Finding his way back in the commons area, he spies the impossibly long-legged Odysseus sprawled on the same couch as before. But, in his dreams he chases after something, causing his legs to flail in the air and his jowls to flap whenever he woofed in his sleep. Archie’s eyes sparkle with wry amusement, “You have a long way to go before taking your place among your noble ancestor’s war dog status.” Continuing on to the second room that he’d laid claim to for his den, Archie carefully placed the gun case on a high shelf built into the metal bulk head.

The delivery men had filled the room and part of the hallway with his trunks, cases and furniture. Archie inspected them all and was deeply relieved to find them intact. The deliverymen returned with his last items and Archie set them to unpacking and arranging his belongings with the quick efficiency of long experience. A wonderfully soft and faded Persian rug covered the utilitarian metal grates of the floor. Next came his great dark oak desk and several leather wing back chairs. Lamps, tapestries and side tables joined the rest of the furniture. His tools, hot plate, tea, and service were unpacked by Archie himself. The activity evidently had roused the sleeping Great Dane pup and Oddie joined the chaos of unpacking. His long whip-like tail threatened more than a few of the more fragile vases and the legs of the workmen.

Finally, everything was in order and Archie beamed as he tipped the deliverymen an obscene amount of money and shooed them from the rooms with their jaws hanging open. Archie set a kettle to boiling and glanced around his new home with deep satisfaction. “Ahh. Much better, eh? Always feels so much more homey with family things about, don’t you think, old boy?” Oddie merely tilted his head at the dapper old man. Clapping his hands together happily and rubbing his palms, Archie combed his hair in a large mirror and straightened his waistcoat so he was more presentable. “Now. Let us go to invite the young lady Yoshi for tea, shall we?

Leaving the newly arranged room, Archie went back to the common area and then cast about for the stairs that would lead to the bridge where he assumed the pilot would be. Mounting the stairs with Oddie leading the way, he knocked on the door to the bridge. Not getting a response, he took out his watch and glanced at it once more. “Perhaps she’s gone to meet the others…I think it safe to say we shan’t find our young lady in Engineering. So, let us go below again and search her out.” Archie, with Oddie trotting easily before him soon tracked the young pilot down as she exited the kitchen area. Archie’s eyes lit up and he approached her in a smooth stride in contrast to the enthusiastic bouncing of Oddie.

“Ni-hao” The pilot started to greet brightly. But then, Yoshi ignored Archie almost entirely at the sight of Oddie. She squealed and threw her arms around the Dane’s thick neck while he nearly bowled her over in his greeting. Archie was appalled and called to the dog, “Get down, you great daft beast. She’s smaller than you are! Get back I say!. Oddie stopped jumping, but his tail whipped side to side happily when Yoshi made baby noises at him.
Archie bowed quite formerly and held out his hand for Yoshi to put hers into it for the traditional kiss to the knuckles. “I am so terribly sorry, my dear. He’s still rather a puppy. He’ll calm down soon, I promise you.” Still waiting for her hand, he continued, “My name is Archibald Merton Ulysses Dalmonte. I have recently booked passage aboard your lovely ship and would be delighted if you would join me for tea?”

Yoshi’s jaw worked as she chewed her gum and she finally let go of Oddie. She grinned happily at the old man, but stared at the offered hand before finally giving the old man a low five slap of the palm. “Quite a mouthful, Dalmonte. You’re the renter, huh?” She grinned and asked, “What’re all dressed up for? You an actor or something?” Her grin was infectious as she peered at him. “Tea? Like for real pinky in the air tea?” She giggled brightly, “Love to. But I really have to make sure we’re loaded right. Too much weight one side or another could make all the difference in the wrong places, you know?”

Archie blinked in confusion when Yoshi slapped his palm, but smiled and straightened when she didn’t understand his gesture. “I assure you, real tea. Yes.” He tugged as his waistcoat to straighten it and continued. “I am an adventurer, an archeologist. I dress like this because I lament the lack of style in what is currently called ‘fashion’. Quite poor workmanship, you see. Not like the old days, I assure you.” He takes her refusal of his invitation in stride. “Ah yes, your duties must come first. Perhaps a rain-check, then?”

Yoshi quirked a brow at Archie…a what check? Oh…you mean maybe later, right? Yeah. Sure. Maybe another time.” She begins to slide away. “I’ll catch you later though, promise!” The moment she is away from the anachronistic puzzle that is Archie, Yoshi buries her nose in her omni pad. “A dog! A real dog!” She nearly squealed in delight.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Shadow Moonseye on Tue Mar 15, 2011 11:14 pm

Alex had preoccupied himself in the helm plotting the route to Odin to ensure they wouldn't warp into any stars or other such hazards. Even though such things are build into the drive's software, he knew he would sleep better at night if he checked the numbers for himself. It was a new vessel after all. The overhead com unit chirped at him, indicating that the ship was being hailed as a sort of formal phone ring from an outside caller who sought courtesy over being concise. Alex picked up the receiver, "This is Captain Lance of Mercury's Dream." He couldn't help but feel a little elated over his new title.

"GPS delivery for Leolani Godani requesting permission to land upon your vessel."

"Granted, Leolani is below deck securing some cargo at the moment. I'll sign for it and see that she gets it."

"Sorry sir. This is a priority one delivery and can only be given to the intended recipient directly. Retinal verification is required as per request of sender."

That caused Alex to quirk a brow. Must be some package to require all that. Certainly cost a crisp credit to get that level of reassurance. "Alright, I'll see to it that she is there to receive it in person. Mercury's Dream out."

The captain closed the external line and opened the ship's PA system. "Leo, your presence is needed on deck to receive a package sent to you. The courier will be arriving any minute, so carefully set down any crate you may be carrying."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The courier breathed out a relieved sigh. "Finally, I found her and can get this heavy ass package off my list." Air rushed past him as he jetted towards the Bestower in his gravcycle twenty feet above the spaceport. The engine hummed idly once he finally touched down upon the ship's deck, retracting the polarized visor on his helmet so that he could rummage through the saddlebags that straddled the back of his bike. He glanced up to see a woman with a bionic arm walking out of the open shuttle bay towards him. With a grunt, he hoisted the heavy box that would just barely fit a pair of shoes. I will not miss carrying around this heavy bastard with me. Whoever mails lead bars just has a sick sick mind.

"Leolani Godani?"

The former miner eyed the struggling courier; dusting her hands off as she closed the final gap between them. When the captain had called over the PA that she had a package on the way, she had been surprised to say the least. Who in their right mind would send her a package? Not her parents, her mother was lost in the bottom of a bottle and her father was always busy--any excuse to get out and away from home. She didn’t have many friends, and none of them would pay to have a package shipped directly to her. Of her extended family, even if they pooled a sum to get something to her she doubted that they would send her anything so important that a message and a point where it could be picked up wouldn’t do.

“Aye, that’s me. Captain Lance said you had a package?” Don’t see why he couldn’t just sign f’r it an’ get it t’ me after the work was done. Must be something’ pretty damn important.

The courier gave a grunt of acknowledgement, struggling to balance the package while pulling out a retinal scanner. “Need retinal verification, ma’am.”

Leolani arched brow quizzically. Must be some package. Cost someone a fat vein t’ afford that kind of security. “Ain’t got all day.”

The courier held up the scanner, muttering under his breath as he balanced the package on a hip. “Hold still, please.” She obliged, the scan taking a few short seconds before the machine let out a soft chirp; her identity confirmed. The courier returned the retinal scanner to his pocket and held the package out for her to take, small beads of sweat breaking out on his forehead from exertion.

I get shipped lead or is this guy weaker th’n a rat on tweak? The courier dropped the package in her outstretched hand--and she tensed quickly at the sudden weight. Shit! Damn thing’s gotta weigh at least twenty fuckin pounds! What the hell’s in this?!

“Thank you ma’am. Have a good day.” The courier left quick as he came, looking all too happy to be rid of the package as he sped away.

Leolani watched him go, before turning to head inside. She passed Therion, pausing next to him, following his gaze after the fast-retreating back of the courier. “Shiny little bike, huh?” She grinned and nudged him with an elbow. “Got a thing f’r bikes, Tinman?” She laughed and gave him another hardy nudge before continuing past him and into the Mercury’s Dream.

She let her feet carry her through the ship’s passages, examining the package as she walked. It was a heavy-duty plastic case, small enough to greatly limit whatever it could hold. It could be a weapon maybe, though why would anyone send her that? The case looked to be protective, so maybe it was something fragile? Whatever it was, it had to be valuable. Combine the case and the measures taken to ensure it got to her and her only it only made sense for the contents to be important to whoever had sent it to her.

The door of her room slid open, her thoughts having carried her up through the ship. She moved to her bed, sitting down on the edge and resting the case in her lap. “Let’s find out what ya got.” She flipped the locks with her organic hand, raising the lid with a fluid motion. Inside the case was lined with stiff cushioning foam, the kind used to hold objects securely without endangering them. A note sat in the bottom. She reached down and lifted it, breath catching when she caught sight of the handwriting.

Hey Leo,

Keep your feet planted, eyes out, and hands steady.

We miss you Sis.


The handwriting could only belong to the twins. Maaka’s twisting e’s were unmistakable, and the slanted scrawl of Tipene was still a pain to read. Leolani closed her eyes, feeling the first gaze of tears raising between her eyelids. Had it only been seven months ago that she had received the news of her brothers’ death? It still didn’t seem possible that they were gone…

The woman drew in a sharp breath, opened her eyes, and carefully setting the note aside. They must have sent the package before their accident. She looked back to the case and the rest of its contents. Deeply set into the foam, a golf-ball sized stone rested. Her eyes darted back over to the note. She carefully lifted the synthetic paper, reading the message one last time before sighing. She returned it to the case and closed it, snapping the locks shut.

She got up only to kneel next to the bed, lifting the case down. She ran her hand over the top of it, before setting it down and sliding it under the bed. She sat back on her heels, rubbing her hands on her thighs. Leolani stood, and crossed the room, lingering in the doorway. She looked back towards the bed and sighed; then turned and left.

The door shut and the lights darkened.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Loki on Thu Mar 17, 2011 12:54 am

Yoshi stood in the middle of the cargo bay, watching as the last crate had been fastened to the deck with sturdy nylon straps when her omni-tool chirped at her. She pressed one of the holographic keys on it, answering Alex's call. "Sup Cap?"

"How goes the loading?"

"Just finished."

"Alright, come on up here. It's time we take Mercury's Dream on its maiden voyage."

She let out a shrill excited squeal that managed to become magnified by the steel walls of the room as she half skipped, half sprinted out of the room making a direct line towards the helm. Moments later she was comfortably seated in the piloting chair with the captain standing next to her with the radio receiver at his mouth. "Tower, this is Mercury's Dream requesting launch clearance."

There was a short pause before a voice responded. "Clearance granted. Safe travels Mercury's Dream."

Alex shot Yoshi a sly grin, giving her the only signal she needed. Her nimble fingers danced across the control terminal causing the engines to hum to life as power flowed through it. From the helm, it had the reassuring tone that comes from all seasoned vessels who have been given great care over its lifetime. "How're we looking, Yosh?"

"Systems are lighting up nicely, airlocks are sealed, mooring lines detached, and engines are reading nominal. Almost through its warm-up cycle."

Alex nodded, pressing a button labeled Engine Room on the com and spoke into the receiver. "How are things looking down there Feralon?"

"They are very nice, although your beta couple is making everything run slower, so I rerouted the energy array into the transpatial conduit."

The captain blinked at the response. "Alright, but in the future please consult with me before modifying my ship. You may know what you're doing, but I would appreciate a heads up, especially once the ship is powered up." He admired the Kiri'ava's initiative, but the prospect of things being tampered with while he wasn't aware was somewhat unnerving. With a sigh, he shrugged off that mentality and replaced it with a wide smile as he pressed the button labeled PA before speaking. "All hands prepare for takeoff." Alex hung up the receiver and met Yoshimi's gaze. "Ready?"

"Do you even need to ask?"

Excitement coursed through every nerve in her body as she gripped the throttle and eased it forward. The only indication that the ship was moving from those who couldn't see outside was the subtle shift in motion that wouldn't have thrown off even the most clumsy of canines. More throttle now that they were clear of the dock, the gentle waves of the ocean caused the ship to rock gently as it continued to gain speed. A few moments later, the massive ship rocked by the waves one last, reaching the crest of it rise without riding the downward slope as Mercury's Dream finally achieved enough lift to become airborne. Butterflies danced with elation in Yoshi's stomach as she felt the upward shift in motion. Giving the engines more power, she pulled back on the controls pointing the ship towards the heavens. The rich blue skies gradually faded to black as they broke through the planet's atmosphere and then gravity well, officially traveling through space.

Yoshi's body tingled at the notion, felt as though the all weight of her old life lifted from her shoulders; finally a chance to start anew. "Uhhhhh... Yosh?" She looked to the captain, her elated smile quickly changing to utter bewilderment at the sight of him floating in a slow path towards the helm's entrance. "Where are you going?"

"Yosh, where's my gravity?!"

"Oh!" She said, realizing that the chair's restraints were holding her in place and the weightlessness she felt was not only a spiritual sensation. Her gaze shifted back to the terminal before she let out an enlightened. "oooOOOOOoooh. The artificial gravity control was set to manual rather than automatic. Most likely the previous owner. I can see the merit in such a thing; he probably had some heavy cargo to unload before his last trip planet side. Either that or they just weren't fond of the jostling that comes when entering a planet's gravity field, causing artificial gravity to fight against the real deal. There'd be tons of reasons for it to--"

"Gravity!" Alex called out, now halfway down the corridor of the crew cabins, twisting awkwardly. "Focus, Yoshimi! Gravity!"

"Oh, right." Yoshi grabbed the receiver, addressing the entire ship. "Sorry for the lack of gravity, former owner had it set to manual rather than auto. Artificial gravity will be restored in five..."

"Four..."

"Make sure somebody catches the cute puppy!"

"YOSHI!" Alex's voice shouted from further down the hallway.

"Three..."

"Two..."

"One..."

Yoshi tapped one of the many ships controls, instantly restoring gravity within the ship with the sound of several thuds as people and objects were once again pulled downward.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Digital Muse on Fri Mar 18, 2011 8:11 pm

Having had little luck in garnering a companion to join him for his tea, Archie retired to his den, took off his shoes and placed them fastidiously into a small locker beneath his bed and stepped into old leather mules. He slipped out of his tweed suit jacket and hung it carefully in another upright locker in his bedroom, slipping instead into a deep blue, satin smoking jacket with black silk lapels. Having dressed properly for his relaxation, Archie returned to the room designated as his den and went about the relaxing, if serious, business of making afternoon tea. Oddie followed every move Archie made in the rather confined, yet luxurious space. Being hip-high to the slender elder man, the Great Dane pup was more hindrance than help.

A long-fingered hand patted the noble head and Archie smiled indulgently, “I’m doing it all correctly, am I?” He asked with a smile. Oddie wuffed deeply and Archie chuckled. “Right you are, I quite forgot the sugar. Well done.” Soon a tidy silver tray with an elegant silver tea service is set and Archie beams at the spread he’s prepared for himself. “Such a shame to indulge alone, Odysseus.” He poured himself a cup, 1 sugar and a spot of real cream and retired to his favorite chair to enjoy his daily tea. Setting his delicate porcelain cup on a side table, Archie packed his pipe and puffed on it contentedly. Being a pup, Odysseus wasn’t quite ready to settle down and trotted out of the den to explore the ship further.

Midway through his second cup of Darjeeling, Archie heard Yoshi announce that they should prepare for takeoff. Despite his years of experience traveling the wide Universe, Archie’s heartbeat quickened with excitement. This trip was going to be different. He could feel it in his bones; this time he’d discover great things. His name would be remembered forever more among the greats of the age like Carter, Schleimann and more. As he sat, dreaming great dreams and puffing on his pipe, he became dimly aware that something was unusual. Looking up, he notes the tea oozing from the spout of the silver teapot and as he watched it, it dawned on him that he was floating gently upwards several inches above his leather chair. The chair, rug, his books and tools lifted gently from their places on the shelves and desktop to float freely about the room.

Biting down on the stem of his pipe, Archie swam out of his chair and deftly plucked his precious tea set from the air and pushing off the wall, floated to a small crate where he nestled the pieces inside and closed the lid. Just then, he heard, "Sorry for the lack of gravity, former owner had it set to manual rather than auto. Artificial gravity will be restored in five..."

"Four..."

"Make sure somebody catches the cute puppy!"


“Oh dear…where is that daft beast?” Archie murmured as he calmly ‘swam’ back toward his favorite chair, gripped the arms…

"Three..."

"Two..."


Archie pulled himself into his chair once more in preparation for the restoration of the artificial gravity.

"One..."

The sudden, harsh installation of the gravity, causes everything around Archie to drop to the desk, shelves or floor suddenly. His precious tea service rattled inside the protective crate he’s stowed them in and Archie grimaced, but was relieved when there was no ominous sound of breaking porcelain. Archie and his chair thumped to the floor sharply , but his firm grip on the arms of the chair ensured he and the chair remained upright. He puffed away on his pipe, mildly irritated, but quite unharmed. “Spilled my tea.” He muttered at the sight of the brown liquid on the floor.

Oddie had wandered into the Engineering department in search of adventure. The automatic door opened to his great bulk and the Dane trotted inside the neat and orderly space curiously. Spying the only person in the space, the pup waved his tail and trotted toward the Kiri ‘ava. Part way across the metal grates, his feet left the ground and a comically small whimper of surprise escaped Oddie’s great maw. His fawn-colored ears and jowls floated upwards from his head and his great, long legs flailed ineffectively as he floated upwards toward the ceiling. Instinctively doing the doggie paddle in mid-air, the Great Dane attempted to swim toward something solid with low whines of frustration.

Somehow managing some headway, Oddie drew closer to Feralon when the gravity was suddenly restored, the gangly pup crashed to the ground, right next to the Kiri ‘ava. Missing the small engineer by scant inches.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Guilty Carrion on Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:12 am

“Shiny little bike, huh?” She grinned and nudged him with an elbow. “Got a thing f’r bikes, Tinman?”

Therion broke his gaze on the retreating form to glance at her, and had he the capacity, he’d have returned her grin. “Since I was a sparkle in my father’s eye.” She laughed again, and disappeared into the ship, as Therion started towards the last of the crates. Not the best expression there, ‘Tinman’.

Hoisting the last of the cargo off the ground, he paid no attention as the delivery truck departed with a silent hum, instead focusing his gaze on the crate in his arms. Regardless…what the hell are we exactly transporting? I mean, I don’t particularly enjoy the thought of something exploding in the cargo hold if they get nudged…

Moving through the hallways, he slipped past the other crew members with little more than a nod. At one of the many intersections though, he paused, staring quizzically at the large dog that stared right back with a similar(if more emotive) expression. That thing is bigger than the pilot… The animal did bring back thoughts of the family bulldog from his ‘flesh’ days(the fact that he had coined a term for it was far more depressing than the AI would ever let on.) Of course, it had been a lap dog, and compared to the titanic canine before him, the memory of the dog’s suprising power faltered. No doubt he could out tug this creature before him, but it would put up quite the fight if he was correct.

“Another time.” His voice was even, and the dog titled it’s head in a way that suggested understanding. Satisfied, Therion continued on his way to the cargo hold, paying no mind to the dog’s renewed stride towards engineering. Not his problem. He glanced at the slightly one-sided stacking in the bay with a light sigh. It took only a few moments to fix, although the AI really didn‘t enjoy having to fix it regardless, and then he set about securing the cargo to the floor.

Yoshi’s stood in to the bay, overseeing the loading as her Omni-tool chirped. He didn’t take long to guess it’s purpose, as a sharp squeal escaped the petite woman, blasting his unsuspecting ‘eardrums’. Before he could so much as turn his head, she was gone out the bay and off to parts unknown, although her excitement suggested that take off would be soon. The PA announced their eminent take off, and Therion chuckled to himself. Nice to know I can still piece the obvious together. Glancing at the crates, the straps appeared well fastened, and he doubted their cargo would so much as fidget beneath the heavy binds that held them. Still, it would be best to watch and make sure everything was properly fastened. Bad experiences with loose cargo had taught him that anything that needed bound would be bound to the maximum degree of his capability, regardless of what it happened to be.

The first few lurches did little to jar the crates, and the droid was satisfied that they weren’t going anywhere without some help. He turned to exit the bay, when a small hiss cued him into the emergence of his Zero-G propulsion system. But why…oh. A drifting wrench answered that question, and the AI was immediately thankful they had the wisdom to fasten everything. As more tools joined the wrench, it crossed his mind that this defiantly wouldn’t be the best place to stand when the gravity came back. A quick thought gave him a slight push from the O2 thrusters on his feet, and he reached the second level of the bay with ease. Moments after he passed over the rail, he felt the familiar tug of gravity and landed with a loud, yet hollow clang. Thankfully, the walkway was capable of withstanding his bulk smashing into it, and looked no worse for wear, minus maybe a minor ding here or there.

Standing slowly, Therion checked himself for damage, minorly annoyed when he found a small dent on his left forearm, but all in all he was no worse for wear. Climbing the stairs into the artillary recess, he gave an approving glance to their array of guns, making a note that they could use a quick once over when he wasn’t busy. Slipping through the commons, he stopped on the stairs when he noticed the captain dusting himself off from fall likely similar to his own.

“You alright there, Captain Lance? I got a ding from my spill, I can’t imagine what it might do to you. Call me paranoid, but I don’t exactly think this is the best way to start your maiden voyage.” A harmless joke, although he had known many a superstitious man in his life. Hopefully Lance wasn’t. “I was hoping to catch a view as we got underway. Permission to board the helm, Captain?”
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by quakernuts on Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:29 pm

The loading of the crates was finished, everyone was inside the ship, and they were preparing for take off. So far, everything had gone smoothly, not that Zack had expected anything different. This was different from a mercenary ship, and he doubted he would see as much action as he used to on this barge, but that was alright. He could use a slight rest from the constant adrenaline surge, and once he got bored, he simply got off at the next stop and hooked up with another captain and their goals for galactic domination. The pilot had run off like a kid in a candy store loaded to the nines with money, and Therion had stepped over to strap all the cargo down. Since the droid had it all covered, Zack didn't see any reason for him to stay in the cargo hold, and instead made his way to the lounge.

Once he reached there, he strode over to the fridge and got himself a bottle of water. He would have preferred a beer, but he didn't know what the captain's tolerance was for alcohol yet, and decided not to test his luck. Zack sat himself down at a welded down table with a booth circling around it. Seeing as no one had come to join him in the mess, Zack flopped down and placed his feet on the table, enjoying the water after the work. The mess itself was pretty bare, the fridge and table being the main things in the entire room. Off to the side was the MRE dispenser for the shit in boxes that passed as meals in the Corps. He didn't care for them, but knew they held all the nutrients needed for a long space voyage. There was also a coffee dispenser, and a few counters, but nothing else fancy. The engines gave the familiar thrum of power as Zack could feel the force of lift off pushing him slightly into his seat. It was something he was used to almost as much as walking, and wouldn't have noticed it had he not been trying to take a drink of water at the time and nearly spilling on himself.

Zack looked out the window behind him at the table, and watched as the sky turned from a light blue, to the blackness of space. He never got tired of the sight, often finding himself sitting next to window during atmospheric entry or exit. He thought he felt something in the pit of his stomach, and thought it was nostalgia, until he started floating upwards. Instantly his training kicked in as he flipped himself upright and grabbed a imbedded section of the roof to keep him from floating everywhere. He looked over to see his water doing circles through the room, the water coming out in droplets and floating around as if in a ballet. Someone must have forgotten to set the gravity to automatic. Zack thought to himself as he made his way to the door.

As he poked his head out, he noticed the gangly features of Archie's dog 'wading' through the ship towards engineering. Zack couldn't help but raise an eyebrow at the sight as it disappeared around the bend. "If I start seeing flying pigs, I'm calling it quits." Zack muttered to himself. Instead, Zack turned around, and grabbed what was left of his water bottle, and made his way out of the room. He intended to make it to the bridge, hopefully to his room to make sure he had secured all his gear and see if any of it would be damaged after this. He doubted it, but it was better safe than sorry.

Holding the bottle upright, and trying to secure the lid while he was at it, he carefully manoeuvred himself around the ship with the ease of a veteran marine. Concentrating on the bottle, Zack passed the stairs, and only briefly heard something.

"Oh shit! Look out!" Zack glanced over to see a charging mechanical armed bull heading in his direction. He attempted to shove himself out of the way, but it was too late. Lani hit him like a freight train, sending them both into the ceiling, and bouncing off. Zack got the worst of it as he grimaced from the pain, and only then did the speaker seem to cue in on his ears.

"One."

"Ah shit..." Zack said, before gravity kicked in, and all the weight of Lani's mechanical arm piledrived him into the ground, knocking the air out of him. Then, a few seconds later, the bottle fell right on his face, luckily capped due to his extreme concentration that had been broken just moments ago. Insult to injury Zack thought to himself as he struggled to regain his breath. Lani seemed to be puzzled as to what was wrong, and Zack pointed at the arm, which was still lying on his chest. She quickly took it off of him, and he gave a big gulp of air

"Norm'lly I'd ask f'r dinner and drinks first... but f'r you? Think I can make an exception." She followed up with a wink and a grin as she continued to sit on top of Zack's chest. Zack managed to gulp in some air, and put out a response.

"Thanks, I feel so warm and fuzzy in my chest...and my kidneys...and possibly my liver..." With a bit of effort, he managed to throw Lani off of him, and rolled himself to a sitting position, shortly making his way to his feet. Checking his chest for anything broken, and finding nothing, he gave a brief sigh of relief. Having a broken rib before any real mission was never a good sign. Once he was good, and standing tall, Leolani offered her organic hand towards him.

"Leolani Godani. Let's avoid the tumbledown next time, eh?" Zack took the outstretched hand, and gave it a firm shake.

"Zack Terrou." He gave a sly smile towards the woman. "And I thought the whole idea behind one night stands was not to give your name." Lani gave a hearty laugh before shaking her head and moving on to another part of the ship. Zack pounded his chest with a fist one last time to make absolute certain nothing was broken, and picked up his water bottle. "At least the cap stayed on." Zack unscrewed the cap, and went to take a drink of water, and noticed nothing came out. Confused, he suddenly noticed the small hole in the side, and the large wet spot dripping down his leg.

"Oh...you have to be kidding..."

Zack quickly made his way up the stairs, hoping to avoid anyone else, and nearly ran headlong into Therion and the captain. "Therion...Captain." He saw their gaze, and before they could say anything, he held up the bottle and pointed to the hole in the side. "No, I did not piss my pants sir. If you'll excuse me." Zack slipped by them, and entered his room to find mainly everything in place.

"Now where the hell did I put my pants?"
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Gunneh on Mon Mar 21, 2011 8:22 am

James pulled another cigarette from the pack and lit it quickly, chuckling to himself as he watched the Marine, the apparent Englishman, the AI and the woman with the bionic arm mill around and talk amongst themselves as he sat back and watched everyone unload the goods into the cargo bay and secure them into place. “Well don’t I just feel like the most gorram useless sum’bitch that ever did walk,” he said with a smile as he exhaled a deep drawl of smoke.

He heard the engines roar to life and felt the tug that meant they were finally getting off-world. A few more minutes and they’d be out of atmo and in the Black, where the real fun would begin. He pulled in another lung-full of smoke and exhaled it slowly, letting the cigarette dangle from his lips. His eyes drifted from person to person, assessing the situation as it came to him: The Marine would, more than likely, need a good many bullet removals, the bionic woman would probably need some patching up after some sort of bar room brawl, the AI would be more of an engineering job and the Englishman…well…he’d probably need some pain relievers from toting around that monstrous bore of a weapon. Basically, it wasn’t anything too-

Suddenly, James was floating and he wasn’t entirely sure why. “Zhi shi sen me*,” he asked no one in particular, the cigarette escaping his mouth and floating right alongside him. He swatted it away quickly, minding not to smack the burning ember on one end.

"Oh, right. Sorry for the lack of gravity, former owner had it set to manual rather than auto. Artificial gravity will be restored in five..."

Wang ba dan*….

"Four..."

"Make sure somebody catches the cute puppy!"

"Three..."

"Two..."

“This isn’t going to feel good….”

"One..."

And just like that, the gravity was back and then James was on his back on the floor...with a lit cigarette burning a spot on his forehead. He yelped, smacked the thing away and hopped to his feet as quickly as he could. He raised a hand to his forehead and felt a blister already starting raise up. He sighed, ground the thing up his heel before turning to see the heaps of bodies on the floor and clapped his hands together.

"Good news, everyone," he called out with a small chuckle. "It seems that the doctor is in! Anyone happen to have anything bruised, broken or generally jarred loose from the fall?"

*Zhe shi sen me - What is this?
*Wang ba dan - Son of a bitch.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Chainlinc3 on Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:34 pm

Illia rolled on her so-called "bed," sighing. That had been some easy entertainment-- rather, entertaining for her. They would have a nightmare decrypting their system folders. With a smirk, she sprang to her feet-- slamming her head against the ceiling. Rubbing her head ruefully, she glared up at it.

"Oh, right. Sorry for the lack of gravity, former owner had it set to manual rather than auto. Artificial gravity will be restored in five…"

She hooked her foot under part of her bed and pulled herself down with ease.

"Four… Make sure somebody catches the cute puppy!"

Something about the way it was said irked Illia. The speaker… seemed like the kind of person who was effortlessly sociable, the kind of person who was easily accepted by others. She envied the ease with which they could do the impossible.

"Three…"

She knew they weren't just born that way. She knew that they weren't doing anything wrong, they'd just practiced more than her. But rationalizations have never held before envy, and her mind conjured image after image for the speaker-- smart, fun, pretty. She must have it all.

"Two…"

But these thoughts were the kind that caused trouble for Illia, and she knew it. There was no reason for her to be so worked up about this, especially when she'd never even met the person. Besides, they probably weren't all that different. She could be sociable too, if she tried. It couldn't be that hard.

"One…"

Something deep inside her smirked at that last thought. Famous last words.

Gravity made itself felt suddenly and forcefully. She landed "softly" against her bed as various thuds and bangs sounded across the hall.

"Eh… might as well."

She rolled out of bed and rose, striding out of her room and across the outer chamber, and peered into the open doorway.

"Everything okay in there? That was a lot of noise."

The room inside was... well, an anachronism. Everything about it's decor seemed quaint, archaic. She was so distracted by the room itself that it took her several seconds to register that there was a person, and that she should be looking at him, and did so.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Loki on Fri Apr 01, 2011 9:55 pm

Alex groaned as he rubbed his shoulder, which had taken the brunt of his weight once gravity was restored, sending him crashing to the unforgiving metal floor mere feet from the stairwell. All in all, could have gone much worse. He had been in the process of rolling and stretching out the soreness when a voice with an inhuman tone addressed him, causing him to turn and become aware of a stiffness in his neck with a wince.

“You alright there, Captain Lance? I got a ding from my spill, I can’t imagine what it might do to you. Call me paranoid, but I don’t exactly think this is the best way to start your maiden voyage. I was hoping to catch a view as we got underway. Permission to board the helm, Captain?”

"I'll be fine and if this is any indicator, life aboard this ship will at least be interesting. Anyways, you're free to enter the helm as long as you don't mess with the controls or distract Yoshimi. We're about to go into warp and I want to make sure that goes more smoothly than takeoff."

After that, Alex moved to the lower levels to determine what sort of mess was made and what damage may had been done. Though she may not be aware at present, the captain would be sure to bill the pilot for anything that needed to be replaced.




Yoshimi sat at the controls blushing at her blunder, hoping that she hadn't hurt anybody or otherwise gained their disfavor. That and she would never forgive herself if she hurt the floppy puppy. Her lip quivered for a moment as she envisioned Odysseus limping and whining. With a clearing of her throat and a shake of her head, she dismissed that thought and refocused upon the instruments before her. She flicked one of the switches to power up the ship's warp flight solution with a rather heavy and metallic sounding THUNK. Yoshi blinked, bewildered at the switch for a moment before continuing with her task. She began typing in the coordinates to Odin, looking in disbelief as every other keystroke made the same resounding THUNK as before. Yoshi stopped and the sound did the same.

"The... hell?"

She gently pressed the button that would begin the ships calculation routine, which made yet another metallic THUNK that was extremely uncharacteristic of the small gesture.

"Did... Did I break something?" She muttered to herself in concern.

"Unless you're counting a small dent as the reason I can't be quiet worth a damn, no."

Yoshimi's eyes grew wide as she looked upon the control panel with awe and excitement. "The ship talks?!"

There was an odd noise that resembled laughter before the voice spoke again. "Yes, Therion and the Mercury Dream merged when the gravity turned back on. We're one and the same now."

She grimaced, reaching up for the ship's intercom to make a call to the Captain. "Alex isn't going to like that news..."

As she reached, something large appeared in her peripheries, causing her to let out a shrill cry as she swatted a plastic cartoonish dinosaur, one of the many such novelties that she had replaced upon the panel's dashboard after they had scattered from their trip in zero g, at the mass in question. The figurine bounced harmlessly off Therion's metal chassis.

"You honestly didn't believe that, right?"

Adrenaline still coursed through the pilot's body that only managed to remain in the seat because of the straps holding her in place. It took her a few racing heartbeats to recognize the metallic mass as Therion, their new hire.

"What are you doing sneaking up on me?!" She said with surprise in her tone rather than malice.

He raised his hands defensively, a light chuckle escaping from his vox before he could stop it. "I wasn't sneaking! Well...I wasn't sneaking very good anyway. Captain Lance just said not to distract you or touch anything. Was trying to be quiet, honest."

Yoshi let out a chuckle as she responded. "Looks like you are not very good at either of those things."

"I think Alex asked a bit much, if I'm to be completely honest." He spared a glance downward, before bending over to pick up the small figurine she had weaponized not moments before. "Here. I believe you...'dropped' this."

The pilot blushed a deep shade of red before retrieving it from Therion's hand, setting it back where it had rested before. "Th- Thanks." She said meekly. "I should get back to work..."

"If only so Alex dosen't tear my head off and mount it on the bow for a month when he comes back." He took a step back, his gaze shifting to the large view port just in front of the pilot. If he could have, he would have smiled. "I'm just going to enjoy the view. Pretend I'm not even here."

The control panel let out a low chime, indicating that a safe warp path had been plotted and the ship was ready to enter warp space. Yoshi cheered excitedly as she reached for the button that would send them forth into the depths of space. She paused, her finger less than an inch from the button before withdrawing it do look through the plotted course first. She didn't want to risk losing flight privileges by making two consecutive mistakes. Once everything checked out, she eagerly slammed her palm on the button. At once, the engines began to hum more intently as energy diverted to the warp drive.

For several seconds, nothing happened apart from the building sound from the engine room. Unlike Faster Than Light Drives that build up speed through increased thrust, Shaw-Fujikawa Warp Drives builds up all that energy for one massive push while building up a field around the ship to put it in a sort of stasis that prevents the effects from the intense and sudden acceleration from being felt by those within. It isn't as agile as its FTL counterpart, but it is significantly faster and far smoother.

Yoshi watched as the countdown to warp descended from thirty to the single digits, her hands gripping tightly to the armrest of her seat and biting her lower lip in anticipation. Once it displayed "1", her glance snapped ahead of her to behold the vast expanses of space ahead of her through the helm's view port. One moment, the stars stood motionless among the black nothingness, white pinpoints streaked by as colors resembling that of a fast moving aurora borealis danced ahead of them. A spacial anomaly caused from breaking the speed of light, similar to the shock collar that occurs when an object enters mach.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Crazy Hobo on Sat Apr 09, 2011 8:24 pm

Feralon had quickly found himself back in the engine room once most of the loading had finished. The engines really quite nice pieces of machinery, but there were just a few things that Feralon felt he could do to help make things runs more smoothly. Grabbing a spanner, Feralon slipped under the left engine, worming his way past the pulse-feedback generator, finding his face sitting directly under the beta couple. Feralon mumbled to himself slightly about why anyone would even install beta couples on ships anymore. All they really did was tax the engine, and their function could be easily bypassed with a few alterations of the path of the energy array. A few minutes of work, and Feralon climbed out from under the left engine, more or less satisfied.

"Now, what else do you need from me?" Feralon asked, flicking from English into Thresh with hardly a thought. Feralon watched the engines hum lightly as the pilot no doubt began to run them through their warm-up cycle. That sound was utterly infectious. Over the years he had spent working on ships, Feralon began to notice that he didn't like being away from that sound for too long. It just felt right to him. As if that sound mirrored everything that was right in the world. Feralon pulled his attention away from the large engines, and turned towards the warp drive, for they were going to be entering warp in a short while, and Feralon wanted to make damn sure that the drive was running correctly. He was happy that it was a Shaw-Fujikawa warp drive, and not an FTL drive. Those things were so rough. One thing he readily missed about Kiri-ava technology was the warp drives. Although Shaw-Fujikawa drives were superior to their FTL counterpart, Kiri-ava drives were plain old better than human warp drives. After only a quick examination, Feralon was interrupted by the intercom.

"How are things looking down there Feralon?"
Captain Lance's voice asked.

"They are very nice, although your beta couple is making everything run slower, so I rerouted the energy array into the transpatial conduit." Feralon almost sighed as he once again reverted to English. It was not exactly a pleasant sounding language, and on top of that Feralon still couldn't speak it perfectly, although he was so much better than he had been even two years ago. Feralon smirked slightly as he felt the minuscule lurch that signified that the ship had begun to move, It had really been too long since he had been off-world in a ship. Turning his attention back to the warp drive, Feralon silently swore to never be on land for that long. It just didn't suit him. Finding nothing to really tinker with on the warp drive, Feralon stood to notice a large dog come through the automatic door.

"My, you're a big one." Feralon said, once again speaking in Thresh. He didn't get much else out, for he suddenly noticed a weightlessness to his body, and he also saw the dog begin to float. 'Who would set the artificial gravity to manual like that?" Feralon mused, as he instinctively caught his foot on the lip of the warp drive, pulling himself down to get a handhold as well.

"Sorry for the lack of gravity, former owner had it set to manual rather than auto. Artificial gravity will be restored in five..."

"Four..."

"Make sure somebody catches the cute puppy!"

“I think it would kill me if I tried." Feralon said jokingly to himself.

"Three..."

"Let's just hope I don't break something." Feralon laughed a bit at his comment, before bracing himself.

"Two..."

He took a breath in, readying himself for the inevitable drop.

"One..."

Despite his best efforts, Feralon landed with a crash, feeling on of his fingers snap as it smacked the warp drive on the way down. Wincing, Feralon stood, and dusted himself off with his good hand. Feralon looked down at his hand, sighing as he saw that his finger was bent at an odd angle. This part was always so painful. With a sharp intake of breath, Feralon twisted the finger back into place, letting out a small yelp as he did so. Although he had set the finger himself, Feralon knew he would need a splint from the doctor. He figured that was what he got for hoping he wouldn't injure himself.

"Excuse me, pup, I've got a date with a doctor." Feralon said as he exited the engineering bay. It didn't take all that long for Feralon to find the doctor. A man calling out that the doctor was in was a rather blatant clue to the location of the doctor. Feralon subtly shuddered as he flicked back into English. "Doctor, need splint, please." Feralon said, indicating his finger in case the doctor didn't understand his English.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Digital Muse on Sun Apr 10, 2011 1:38 am

A slender, red-haired girl with the look of a seasoned traveler despite her young years, poked her head in through the open doorway as Archie went about putting his den back into order.

"Everything okay in there? That was a lot of noise."

His clear blue eyes peered at the young lady and he smiled widely. “Well, this is a pleasant surprise.” He said heartily. Setting aside a pair of books on Troy and Angkor Thom of old Earth, he approached Illia with his hand extended as he had with Yoshi and waited for the girl to place her hand into his. “A fellow passenger?” He deduced since he hadn’t seen the girl at the initial meeting prior to lift-off. “Archibald Merton Ulysses Dalmonte, at your service, m’ dear.” He asserted by way of an introduction.

Her question about the condition of his room made Archie sigh gently, “Nothing broken, I don’t believe, although my tea was spilled. Bollocks.” His eyes widened suddenly at the curse, “Oh, do forgive my foul manners; quite unforgivable.” He lifted free hand to cover a cough, “Well, yes…how far have you booked passage?”

As Illia answered his question, he sensed an unease in the youg girl. Retrieving his Mother’s tea service from the crate he’d stashed it in, he reset it on the side board. He’d best go to find poor Odysseus in case the great brute had come to some harm. He fastidiously changed from his smoking jacket back into his tweed sport coat. He straightened his tie in the mirror and once satisfied with his look, left his rooms in search of Odysseus and the rest of the crew to ensure they were all in good health.

As he rounded a corner, he found the Doctor up and dusting himself off, calling out that he was now in. Next to him, the imposing young woman with the mechanical arm was picking herself up from the deck with a bemused look upon her face. Ever solicitous, Archie swiftly strode to Leolani’s side and offered a hand to the more-than-capable miner. “Please, allow me to assist you. Are you quite alright?”

The dark-eyed, hard-faced woman blinked momentarily as she looked at the elderly scholar’s offered hand. “What?” She asked him in confusion. Her eyes fell to the offered hand and she deliberately placed her natural hand into his and climbs to her feet easily. Smiling, Archie brought her hand to his lips and placed a kiss on the knuckles in a very old-fashioned gesture.

Leolani coughed softly, trying very hard not to show her extreme discomfort at the bizarre behavior. Followed by a mumbled "Didn't bang m'self up. Had a good cushion. Thanks."

Archie doesn’t hang on to her hand over-long, however, he’d noted her unease intuitively. “Archibald Merton Ulysses Dalmonte. It is my pleasure to make your acquaintance.” As if to break the awkward tension in the air, the Kiri’ava engineer appeared; followed closely by Odysseus who appeared none the worse for wear. Feralon, however, called to the Doctor, having sustained a minor broken finger in the abrupt restoration of gravity within the ship.

Much relieved, Archie smiled, calling Oddie to his side and introduced him quite seriously to Leolani, “Miss Godani? Allow me to introduce you to Odysseus. My companion.” Archie turned to the Dane pup, “Odysseus, this is Miss Godani. Say hello like a good boy.” Oddie raised his leg and pawed the air, waiting for Leolani to shake it. “Smart as a whip.” Archie assured Leolani. “Excuse me, Miss Godani.”

Approaching Feralon, Archie cleared his throat and spoke in broken, but passable Thresh ”Hello. Name Dalmonte, is. Um…Help me learn speak, correct?” He smiled, knowing he’d butchered the introduction, “Forgive me. My Thresh is rudimentary at best.”
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Gunneh on Sun Apr 10, 2011 8:23 pm

James turned to see the Kiri'ava walking towards him and smiled as he spoke. "One finger splint coming right up," he said running over to where his medical supply kit had drifted and fallen to during their brief moment of weightlessness and then running back to Feralon just as quickly. He sat the bag down on the floor and knelt besides it, rummaging through its contents until he found the splint and a small roll of medical tape and rose again, only to be greeted by the sight of the Englishman as well as the Kiri'ava.

"Nice to meet you, Mr. Dalmonte," the doctor said, not looking at the Englishman. He took Feralon's hand softly and inspected the finger quickly. "I know you weren't exactly talking to me, since you were speaking Thresh and whatnot, but I just figured that I ought to get my introductions done with for the two of you in one go. And don't you worry your little head about not being able to speak Thresh all too well, Mr. Dalmonte: Hell, I worked off-world at a small hospital treating mostly Kiri'ava and I only learned enough Thresh to introduce myself properly, which is why I'm going to do this."

James slid the splint into place and finally looked over to Archie with a smile. "It's very nice to meet you, Mr. Dalmonte. My name is Jameson McCallister, but you can call me James, and I am the operating physician on this boat." His focus then shifted to Feralon and, with the same smile and the confidence of having repeated the same line hundreds of times, said, "My name is Doctor James McCallister, and everything will be just fine."

With that, he handed the roll of medical tape to Archie and then knelt back down beside his bag to search for some pain meds. "Now, Mr. Dalmonte, I would be much obliged if you'd cut me off a couple of decent sized pieces of tape for our fine, feathered friend here while I try to find something to dull the pain. Shiny?"
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by quakernuts on Thu Apr 14, 2011 9:51 pm

Zack rummaged through the drawers of his dresser, trying to remember exactly how he had sorted everything, and managed to find a pair of dry pants at last. Quickly he changed into them, and after making sure nothing was damaged in his room from their little Zero-G joy ride, wandered out into the hallway. From there, he noticed that both Therion and Alex had moved on, which was fine in his mind. He wasn't ready to be ridiculed by the crew that he barely knew. He was about to head back downstairs towards the Mess when he realized the door to the bridge was open. The pilot, which he hadn't properly been introduced to yet, was sitting in the chair while Therion was watching the spacial anomaly through the bridge windows. Well, if she's just sitting there, might as well introduce myself. Zack thought to himself as he walked towards the bridge.

Over the years as a Recon specialist, Zack had gotten into the habit of walking quietly even when he wasn't meaning to. It was a passive thing, and it didn't even register to him he was doing it even as he walked up beside Therion, who didn't seem to notice him. Zack stood there for a few moments, not bothering to say anything and just enjoying the view. Finally, he decided to break the ice. "Never gets old, does it?"

Yoshi gave a yelp, and Therion peered over quickly. Obviously his bad habit had, once again, worked against him. Yoshi cursed in Chinese, enough that Zack couldn't quite grasp what exactly she was saying. "What is it with people sneaking up on me today? I'm telling Alex to get all of you guys some bells!" Zack peered over at Therion, who did nothing but stare out the window some more. Zack simply looked between the two, kind of curious as to why she said that but not wanting to pry.

"Sorry, bad habit I picked up while in Spec ops. Name's Zack Terrou, Ship's main hired gun. Yoshi, right?" The pilot let out an exasperated sigh, although Zack got the feeling it was more from the sudden scare than him asking the question.

"Yup, that's me." Her tone was still kind, but there was nothing else to indicate that she was going to continue the conversation. Zack nodded, continuing to look out at the spectacle of space around them. He had been aboard ships nearly his entire life, and yet he always had a hard time yanking his eyes away from the windows, well, without someone firing at him at least.

"Good to know I got the right person. How long you been flying?"

Her interest seemed to pick up a slight more as Zack got onto the topic of piloting ships. "I've been flying low-altitude courier shuttles well before most kids had their permit for motorized vehicles. I believe I was about twelve when I first took over the controls..." She looked over at Zack with a smile. "With my uncle ready at copilot of course." Zack gave a smirk, not sure if he believed that last bit seeing her hyperactive and wild personality first hand a few minutes ago.

"Good to hear. I've been with a fair share of pilots who think because they have a bar on their shoulder and a yoke in their hands that they're the best damn thing since Warp Drive." Zack stared off into space a bit more. "Turned out, all you did was point them towards a little fire, they pissed their pants, and one of us marines had to try and fly the thing." Zack shuddered slightly. "Worst idea...ever. They give us vids and tests, so technically we know how to fly the dropships...but words and actions never really translate, you know?"

Yoshi seemed to hesitate slightly, and her voice filled with uncertainty and a slight air of concern seemed to fill the room. "Unfortunately I don't know... Sure, I've flow in some of the worst storms you could ever imagine. But I've never actually done so in a situation where I was trying to be shot down..." Uh oh, I've hit a tender spot. Zack thought to himself as he thought how best to approach this next step. Instead of trying to apologize for making her uncomfortable, or saying she would do fine when the situation happened, he simply shrugged.

"You never really know what you'll do when you're presented with just such a situation. The pilots I mentioned? Yeah, they were damn near useless, but that doesn't mean all of them were like that. Hell, I would be dead today if it weren't for them space jockeys. It all comes down to which group you want to put yourself in." Zack looked directly to Yoshi this time, giving a smirk of approval. "I have a good feeling about you, and I've always trusted my gut." Zack nodded towards the door. "Anyways, I'm getting a little thirsty. Talk to you later." Zack turned, and nodded towards Therion on his way out, heading for the stairs.

He quickly made his way downstairs, and passed by the infirmary on the way. He managed to sneak a glance of a party going on in the room, and stopped by the door to check if everything was alright. As his head poked in the door, he could see that Archie, Feralon, and Doc were all there, and it looked like Big Bird had managed to break his finger. That was never a good sign, to not even have begun a mission and someone was already injured, no matter how small. When everyone started looking back to him, he simply gave a lazy salute. "Just curious." Was all he said, and left the room without a further word.

Back in the mess, he noticed several things had fallen from where they were supposed to be, a couple were dented but all of them looked operational. He quickly gathered them, and replaced them to where he remembered them being, before opening the fridge to grab another water to replace the one that had soaked his leg. He sat down in the booth seat once more, propping his legs up and looking out the window to his side. He didn't really know what to do with himself on the ship at the moment. He was a hired gun, not a tech. doctor, or even pilot. He also thought to himself that if this was the typical kind of assignment that they would be doing, this was going to be the easiest, and most boring job he had ever done.

So long as he got paid, he could deal with boring.


Last edited by quakernuts on Mon May 09, 2011 5:10 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Shadow Moonseye on Fri Apr 15, 2011 8:54 pm

Though the sudden loss of gravity had been surprising, it hadn’t thrown the former miner off. She had logged enough hours of zero gee over the years for it to be second nature to her. No, it had been the sudden collision with Zack that had thrown her for a loop. He had taken it in good humor though--despite being crushed by the monster of her arm--and he was easy on the eyes so Leolani wasn’t complaining. She’d be lying if she said she hadn’t taken advantage of the view as he left.

Preparing to stand, she was interrupted by an odd older mean striding swiftly to her side and offering her a hand. “Please, allow me to assist you. Are you quite alright?”

She blinked, confusion crinkling her features. “What?” Was the guy serious? She didn’t need help. She recognized him from earlier; he had been directing several men with the unloading of his cargo. Must be the passenger. Shit, need t’ shine my spit. Don’ need boot out Too Far before our first mission’s done for offendin’. She case a quick glance at his face before her gaze fell back to his proffered hand. She grasped it with her natural hand and climbed to her feet. The man practically beamed and then of all things he kissed her knuckles!

Joke with her, make lewd comments towards her, treat her like one of the guys, or pick a fight with her and she’d give as good as she got. But treat Leolani like a proper lady and she felt embarrassed and uncomfortable. She was a rock rat for Ivar’s sake! Rough and vulgar and hard as the asteroids she mined; not some fragile and delicate ‘spheregrown woman. Of everything she could say she was, a lady was not one of them.

She coughed, her free hand coming up to rub the back of her neck and mumbled an answer: “Didn’t bang myself up. Had a good cushion. Thanks.”

He didn’t hand onto her hand too long and promptly introduced himself. “Archibald Merton Ulysses Dalmonte. It is my pleasure to make your acquaintance.”

“Leolani Godani.” She fell into silence, still awkwardly holding the back of her neck, waiting if Archie had anything else to say. The appearance of the Kiri’ava engineer followed by the Dane pup shattered the tension as easily as ice under a drill and the miner let out a relieved breath. The Kiri’ava had suffered a broken finger and called to the doctor. Archie called the dog to his side, smiling, before turning and introducing him to her.

“Miss Godani? Allow me to introduce you to Odysseus. My companion.” He turned to the large pup, “Odysseus, this is Miss Godani. Say hello like a good boy.” Oddie raised a leg and pawed at the air, waiting for her to shake it. “Smart as a whip. Excuse me, Miss Godani.” Just like that, the odd little man purposefully left her for the direction of the Kiri’ava and the doctor.

She looked down at Oddie and had to laugh. He made quite the sight, sitting patiently and pawing at the air. He was the first living dog she had ever seen--pets weren’t usually kept out in the mining colonies, especially not large pets like dogs. They were too costly, and ate up valuable resources: air, water, food, space, in the end most deemed the companionship they provided wasn’t worth it. She grinned and carefully shook his paw with her natural hand. “Good t’ meet ya, Oddie.”

She released his paw and Oddie stood, tail wagging. She chuckled and scratched the top of his head, earning a happy bark. Giving him an affectionate thump on his side, she thought that she could grow to like the critter. “Go get ‘em, big guy.” She gave him one last pat before he bounded off towards the trio.

The warp drive was engaged and the journey underway; the ship would be singing her song to the stars and any ears willing to listen. Let’s hear that pretty voice of yours.

She made her way down to the cargo hold; pausing just long enough as she passed the mess to shoot a quick wave at Zack before continuing on her way. The hold was deserted--as expected--the crates still firmly strapped down, having survived the bout of zero gee no worse for the wear. Scattered about at random were tools, obviously displaced by weightlessness and distributed by the sudden restoration of gravity. “Figures I get t’ clean.” She rolled her left shoulder a few times before setting to work collecting the scattered tools and returning them to their places. It was simple, easy stuff, but she was glad for the work. Sitting around doing nothing all the time left her feeling restless.

After a final walkthrough of the hold to make sure all the tools were put away; Leolani stopped in the middle of the room and rested her hands on her hips. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath, letting the last whispers of her movement fade and the ambient voice of the Mercury’s Dream fill the hold around the miner. Her song was low and deep, resonating in the space with a haunting descant. She had a good, strong voice--though it lacked the pure crystalline quality brand new ships possessed--seasoned, and promised safe haven for those who crewed her and dwelled within her halls and hull.

A genuine smile curved Leolani’s lips and she hummed in time to the Mercury’s Dream’s song, a tune from her younger years taught to her from the knee of a favorite uncle.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Guilty Carrion on Wed May 18, 2011 1:57 am

Therion barely moved during Zack and Yoshi’s conversation, his eyes registering the two in his perphiries, but focusing mainly on the dancing lights before him. How many times had he seen this? A tally started running in the back of his mind, rapidly cycling through memories, thousands of snapshots flashing past his eyes.

Somewhere in his mind, he snickered at Zack’s awkward blunder, but outwardly, there was little more than slight head shift. An image snapped into his mind, but this one lingered, slowly shifting into the image of a burning star. The Android stiffened, and a soft whisper escaped him. “Sol.” The star’s still form burst into radiant life, as the AI slipped into memory.

-----------------------

“All hands, jump in five…”

Brown eyes flicked briefly upward at the broadcast, before refocusing on the view port in front of him. A quiet murmur broke out in the small group gathered behind him, the observation deck filling with the echoes of hushed voices off hollow walls. A mixture of excitement and trepidation charged the air, and Clyde would be lying if he said it wasn’t making him a little nervous.

“Four…”

Sol shone brightly outside the viewport, the yellow star’s radiant form difficult to watch, even through the UV shielded glass that the viewport was made up of. Still, he managed to linger on the heart of the system for a few moments longer, before the water forming in the corner of his eyes forced his gaze out into the comfortable void of space.

“Three…”

He swallowed, and released a breath he didn’t realize he had been holding.

“Two…”

Somewhere out there, beyond all these stars, the enemy lay in wait. The Drex. Aliens. This war had been raging since before he was born, battles raging across worlds and vast empty spaces. The scale was unheard of, and to think of it made Clyde painfully aware of how insignificantly small he was.

Although he felt nothing, it was impossible to notice the sudden, instantaneous shift in the star outside the viewport. Once a blazing orb, it surged into a streak of blazing light as the ship jumped pass, the image burning itself in his eyes to linger even after the source had long died out. Staring for a moment out into the dancing aura, Clyde lost himself in the sight, before a woman’s voice broke through his stupor.

“You just gonna stare at the window all day, Clyde?”

He turned slowly to look to the old face, as his mind snapped back to the present.

------------------------------------------

Staring to where the ghost image had been just moments ago, Therion found himself mentally trying to swallow even though he didn’t have a throat. A moment later, a small fist came into view and promptly knocked on his forehead, before Yoshi’s voice filled his head.

"Hey. You OK in there? Need a reboot?"

He blinked once, the pilot having stood up on her seat to place herself directly in sight, fixing the machine with a curious look. Then it dawned on him.

Ah shit. Sharply turning his head away, the AI fumbled for an excuse for a moment, mentally berating himself for letting himself slip off like that. “Fine, I’m perfectly alright. Just…got distracted.” Pausing he glanced back, catching the brow raising higher. “Memories. Just caught up in memories. I do that sometimes, it’s a robot thing.”


Silence hung between them for a moment, before Yoshi returned to her seat. Before she could respond, however, Therion turned on his heel, starting towards the exit with suprising speed. “I’m gonna go check up on the gun batteries. If the captain needs me, he can give me a page.” It was rushed out, he almost stumbled over his words, but managed to slip out of the bridge before she could respond.

Halfway down the hall, he realized that was probably a smidgen of an overeaction. Smooth. So, so smooth. Running a hand down his face, the android lumber off down the stairs, intent on disappearing into the gun batteries for several hours. People skills. You need to brush up on them. A lot.

Descending into the mess, the machine ignored the noise in the infirmary, but paused when he spotted the soldier. The man had mentioned serving in the Spec Ops earlier. It was a little odd to see one of them outside of the corps. Still another former soldier would be a nice addition, and might even provide some familiar company. But, that was for later.

“Don’t spill this time, eh?” A light, grating chuckle filled the quiet, and he continued down the small hall into the Artillery Recess, quietly examining the guns, before moving over to the master control, and started up the diagnostics. Painless, mind numbing calcaulations, and a few quick once over. What better way to kill several hours?

In the back of his mind, the AI started a tally.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by quakernuts on Wed Jun 01, 2011 11:56 pm

Zack hadn't really moved from the mess once he had gotten there, and nursed the water he had in his hand as he continued to watch out the window. He watched as stars streaked by, and the nothingness of space seemed to calm him. He knew that if there was even a pinprick hole in the side of this ship, he could be sucked out of it, but that didn't bother him. He had been in so many situations like that that the thought was easily pushed out of his mind. No one had yet to enter the mess besides himself, and he found the bit of solitude comforting and familiar. He was used to being alone, from when he was in the military, and after. One of those feelings that no matter how many times you feel it, it never gets old. He sighed slightly inwards to himself, and wondered if he should take out Mary for cleaning when he noticed Lani pass by and offer a wave. Zack gave a quick two finger salute in her direction as she passed by, and was soon visited by the robot man as well.

"Don't spill this time, eh?" Therion said with a chuckle, or at least, what sounded like a chuckle.

"I'll do my best mom." Zack said with all the enthusiasm of a university professor. Soon Therion was gone as well, and Zack was left alone once more. That is, until Archie made his presence known to him by walking in and sitting next to him.

"Ah, Zack my boy, enjoying the facilities I see?" Archie pulled out a pipe, playing with it slightly. Zack gave a half smile, and drank a bit more water.

"Only the smallest bit Archie. Food would look good right now, but I've had it with MRE's. A man can only stomach those as his main course for so long." The corners of Archie's eyes crinkled with amusement.

"The lament of every Military man, what?" He packed his pipe carefully, "I believe Miss Yoshi or the Captain will be arranging dinner?"

Zack raised an eyebrow for a moment before giving a half smile. "Funny ain't it? We have everything from a robot to an alien, but we didn't manage to hire a cook." Zack shook his head slightly. "I hope flying a ship transfers over to cooking some food, or it's our stomachs which will be in for the ride."

Archie's fine white brows rose, "I can only imagine this to be because our good Captain has it well in hand." He lit his pipe, puffing on it vigorously to ensure it was smoldering nicely. The burning tobacco had a rich aroma to it. "If the Captain wouldn't mind, I can hold my own with a knife and spatula as it were. I'd be delighted to lend a hand."

Zack gave a quick look out the window. "Oh I don't doubt that. A man of your experience and travels must have some fine recipes to help around the ship. Though I'm not sure what Yoshi mi-" Zack was cut off suddenly when the PA system interrupted his thoughts on the matter.

"For anyone wanting any food, supper will be served in the mess hall in five minutes." Zack gave a smirk as he looked upwards, then back to Archie.

"Looks like you're right there Archie, they already have someone in mind."




Five minutes later, Zack was standing beside Yoshi as she created what appeared to be her version of food. The way she simply looked at something and tossed it in had Zack raising an eyebrow as to just how she prepared everything. It looked edible, and it smelled edible, so he didn't mind. He had yet to say anything, and he had the feeling that he was making her uncomfortable, but he didn't come casually into conversation, and was rarely the one to start it. She tried to reach for some spices across the counter, but Zack was blocking her way, and it took a second for him to move out of the way. "Something you need?" Her tone was polite enough, but Zack wasn't stupid and could hear the impatience behind it.

"Just curious as to what we're having tonight. You seem to be grabbing a little bit of everything." She seemed to pick up slightly as she quickly ran through the menu.

"Ramen noodles stir fry with eggs, bananas, stewed tomatoes served with parmigiano-reggiano cheese sprinkled over top. Sides include white rice, dinner rolls, and kernel corn with honey stirred in for flavour!" Zack gave a nod, watching her mix a few more things together before wandering over to the table. Everyone was slowly starting to trickle in, and Zack took up a seat next to Therion whose head was turned away from him at the moment, watching the door. Zack slid himself in on the bench, assuming a relaxed posture with his arms cross leaning forward on the table. Therion glanced back, and just by the slight hesitant silence, Zack knew he got him off his guard.

"Yep, I'm buying you a bell." Therion said, his voice indicating he was being a smartass. Zack gave a smirk, and continued staring straight ahead.

"Go for it Tinman, you still won't hear me coming if I don't want you to." About this time, Lani decided to take up the spot directly across from Zack, and obviously didn't shy away from coming into a conversation as much as Zack did.

"Sneakin 'round the ship; sounds like trouble t' me." She said and grinned as she sat herself across from Zack. "Where do I sign up?" Zack gave a smile as he looked back at Therion.

"Well with the way Therion's gaze keeps wandering, I would say his room after midnight standard time."

"Last time I checked, looking at my crew mates didn't warrant a late night visit, but I suppose I won't complain." Therion shot back in defence. Zack gave a smile while Lani gave a small chuckle. Zack gave a good look around the table, noticing that Archie had taken up a spot at the other head of the table, seeming to engage in conversation but not catching the majority of it. Everyone else was assorted around the table, entering into their own conversations. Yoshi finally gave a clap to get everyone's attention.

"Help yourselves, I've made plenty!" Zack didn't waste anytime, and got up from his seat at almost a lazy pace. Making his way to the food, and helping himself to anything he wanted. Despite his previous assumptions about how she was tossing everything around like crazy, he couldn't help but notice how good everything looked. He wondered just how often it turned out like this and not the other way. He shoved that thought to the back of his mind, thankful to have a decent meal for once in his life. He returned to his seat next to Therion, who hadn't moved for obvious reasons. Zack dug in, and looked around slightly to see everyone taking their seats once more.

"A pilot and a cook. What a combination. What will they think up next? A giant robot and a therapist?" Zack said to Therion and Lani finished taking her seat across from him.

"Didn't you know? There's nothing I like more than sitting around listening to people complain about their lives. Fills me with joy at the very thought of it." Therion replied, heavy sarcasm evident even through his metallic voice. Zack grabbed another fork full of food, and looked to the robot.

"And here I thought I was the sarcastic bastard." Zack replied before digging into his food.

"Always happy to help a breakthrough." Therion said, his head swivelling to look at the others. Zack simply shook his head as he continued with his supper. So far he hadn't made too bad an impression on the crew, at least, he didn't think he did. He only hoped that the rest of the crew could do as well. Zack knew all too well just how much camaraderie and trust went on a ship, and he hoped that it would be built quickly and without hesitation. Glancing at Yoshi, and then at Feralon, he knew his hopes were pretty slim.


Last edited by quakernuts on Mon Jun 20, 2011 6:10 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Loki on Fri Jun 03, 2011 11:31 am

Yoshi sat in her seat, watching with awe at the phenomena that danced over the ship as it traveled at unperceivable speeds. After a few more moments, she recalled that Alex had asked her to prepare dinner this evening. She replied in the affirmative when she was asked if she could cook, and she could quite well. However, one common oversight with that is that knowing how to cook and knowing recipes of dishes to make do not necessarily go hand in hand. So while the dishes she prepared were appealing to the eye and cooked to near perfection, the flavors tended to be unusual and at times unappealing. Ingredients were typically picked for their individual flavor, mainly around whatever sounds most appetizing to her at the time, and are not considered about the resulting flavor when combined into the whole of the entrée. As a rule of thumb, she tries to incorporate every food group into the main entrée if at all possible. The result of which tended to be meals that were interesting, unusual, and only occasionally unpalatable.

With the flick of a few switches on the control panel, armored shutters slid over the helm’s observation windows with a series of heavy thunks. Yoshi hopped out of her chair and went to head downstairs when she realized that Therion was still standing entirely motionless, staring at the shutters as though they had not obstructed the view to the outside. “Therion?” The comparatively tiny woman walked around the robot and looked up at him, puzzlement clearly expressed on her face. “Hellllooooo.” She followed what she suspected was Therion’s gaze and seen nothing but uninteresting armored hull. Walking closer, she knocked on his armored chest a few times as though it was a door; still no response. The Captain gave me direct orders not to allow any of the others into the helm without one of the two of us present, unless there is an emergency or until we get to know them better. So I can’t leave until he leaves… Sighing, she deactivated the magnetic couple to her captain’s chair, allowing it to move freely and placed it in front of Therion before securing it in place one more. She climbed up and began knocking on Therion’s forehead. "Hey. You okay in there? Need a reboot?"

She just looked at him in confusion as he explained himself before hastily retreating downstairs. “Robots are weird.” Yoshi returned the chair to its rightful spot and headed down to the small kitchen in the commons portion of the ship.




A little over half an hour later, Yoshi was putting the final additions on the meal when she turned and nearly bumped into Zack. She had been aware that he was in the kitchen, but lost track of him when she began focusing on the meal. I swear. Bells are soon to become a part of the uniform. Ooooo, the ones on collars like kitties wear. WITH KITTY EARS! It’ll be such a cute uniform! She blinked and returned her thoughts to the present and politely asked. "Something you need?"

"Just curious as to what we're having tonight. You seem to be grabbing a little bit of everything."

She smiled delightfully, continuing her preparations while she reviewed the menu. By then people began filing in and she set about putting the meal in their appropriately sized serving bowls and corresponding utensils. With a slight skip to her step, she set the food upon the table in a few trips before saying, “Boardinghouse reach rules; take what you plan on eating and help yourselves to seconds.” Yoshi plopped down into the seat at the other side of Alex and across from Archie and began filling her plate with food.
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Gunneh on Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:30 pm

There was only one thing in the 'Verse that James hated more than heavy things, and that was...well...anything involving paperwork, and even though their voyage had just begun, he was already sitting at his desk filling out his own copies of the crew's medical histories. With a long, drawn out sigh, he finally dropped his pen and stared up at the ceiling, hoping silently that each and every one of their parents had decided to pull an Achilles and dipped them in the river Styx just so he'd never have to do this ever again.

Unless of course they all somehow managed to fuck up their ankles, he thought. That would be just my luck, wouldn't it?

James sighed once more and looked back down at his desk, a small smirk finally coming across his lips as he slid each piece of paper into its appropriately marked manilla folder and stuffed them all into one of the larger drawers of the desk. He lifted his right hand toward his face and stared at the screen on his Omni-Tool, re-checking the inventory list and noting what they needed more of, what it wouldn't hurt having more of and what they had plenty of. He chuckled to himself as the realisation that he was finally out of his own personal Hell as he hit send, transferring the list to the Captain's Omni-Tool immediately.

"And now," he said to himself, the faint smell of food finally hitting his nose, "I think it's time to go get some grub."

**************

James entered the mess hall with as much swagger as he could muster, trying to make up for not being able to help everyone unload the crates earlier...and the whole burning himself on the forehead after the low-gravity incident.... He frowned slightly and sucked his chest back in a bit, feeling a little less confident now, but generally more happy about being around people for the first time in over an hour and a half.

“Boardinghouse reach rules; take what you plan on eating and help yourselves to seconds.”

James grinned, grabbed a bowl and began piling everything into one heaping pile before stirring it all together and dropping two dinner rolls on top of the mound. There was an open seat next to Leolani, formerly known to him as the woman with the bionic arm, and across from Zack, formerly known to him as the Marine, and Therion, the giant combat bot he'd seen before. He nodded to himself and sat down next to Leolani, greeting the other three with a smile.

"I hope you all don't mind me sitting here," he said, tossing in a small pause, as if waiting for them to send him to the other end of the table.

"So long as you remember no surgery on this table, no problems," Zack replied. "What's up, Doc?"

"Just finished writing up my own copies of all of y'all's medical records," James replied, twirling his fork around in his noodles as he took a bite of one of his dinner rolls, chewed it quickly and then swallowed, "and secretly hoping that each and every one of you somehow finds a way to become invincible so I don't ever have to do paperwork again."

He chuckled at his own joke and took a bite of his noodles, chewed and swallowed before his gaze shifted to Therion. "I've got a question for you, big boy," he asked. "I've got nearly any kind of equipment I need to keep the bio-members of this crew stitched up pretty well, but I've got no way of monitoring anything you've got hidden away in that shell if need be, so tell me, are you all metal or have you got anything fleshy and somewhat huggable underneath there?"
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Digital Muse on Mon Jun 20, 2011 3:56 am

When the announcement for dinner came over the comm, Archie rose with a slight nod toward Zack. “If you’ll excuse me, I’ll just pop off to dress for dinner.” The older man strode through the corridors trailing aromatic pipe smoke. Oddie trotted into the room, hopped up onto the bunk, made one turn on the mattress before collapsing into a comfortable heap to watch his master. Archie set his pipe aside in a marble ashtray on his desk and turned to one of his 4 wardrobe trunks. “More of a casual setting, eh, Odysseus? Yes, Quite, the white, I believe.” He confirmed with the Great Dane pup.

Archie donned his elegant white tuxedo jacket over his white shirt, tied a satin black bow tie and fussed with it until it was perfectly straight beneath his chin. Studying his reflection in his mirror, he seemed satisfied and returned his tweed jacket fastidiously to another wardrobe trunk before calling for Odysseus to follow him back to the common room for his first dinner with his new companions.

When Archie passed the galley, he sniffed the aroma appreciatively. It wasn’t any dish he could name, but individual smells were recognized. He and Oddie continued on to the common area where most of the others were already seated. Automatically, Archie took the seat at the end of the long table opposite the Captain and acknowledged each of the others. His eyes lit upon the VI with some curiosity. Why was the mechanical there? Before he could ask about it, Yoshi came from the galley bearing bowls of wonderful-smelling hot food. He could identify none of it, but it certainly looked good.

Archie stood each time Yoshi left and returned with food and his eyes sparkled with mirth at the unrestrained joie d vivre the pilot showed. “I must say, Miss Yoshi, it certainly smells wonderful. Is it a family recipe, perhaps?” He waited for bowls to be passed around the table politely and took small amounts of each bowl offered. “Who are we missing? Miss Godani and our Engineer and oh, of course, Miss Ilia as well. I do hope they’re all right.” He put his fork down, always one to follow the strict rules of etiquette, “Shall we wait for them?” His blue eyes glanced around the table, seeing that the others were following a more casual code of conduct and appeared to figure the missing crew members would catch up. “Well, I suppose….they can join us as they can.”

His eyes kept sliding to the VI. Finally, his curiosity got the best of him, “Forgive my curiosity, Captain…but the VI. Is it customary to invite them to dinner?” At almost the same time, the Doctor also spoke up, "I've got a question for you, big boy," he asked. "I've got nearly any kind of equipment I need to keep the bio-members of this crew stitched up pretty well, but I've got no way of monitoring anything you've got hidden away in that shell if need be, so tell me, are you all metal or have you got anything fleshy and somewhat huggable underneath there?"

Archie blinked at the question, his gaze swinging between the Captain, Therion and the Doctor. “What’s this, then? Are you saying this mechanical is not a VI?” He paused, quite taken aback by the revelation, “I must say, that this is quite a surprise.” He looked toward Therion, examining him more fully. “Not on the run, are you, M’boy?”
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Re: On Steel Wings

Post by Guilty Carrion on Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:36 pm

As his eyes flicked over the control one last time, Therion nodded happily at his work. The guns had been in tip top shape already, but a few easy calibrations had ensured their aim was slightly more accurate. Enough to be noticeable? Maybe, but it had served its purpose of occupying the AI for the time being. Of course, now he had nothing to do…

Double check the numbers? No, I’ve already triple checked…

Drumming a metal finger against the side of the Preforator, he mused for a moment before the intercom crackled to life and announced dinner would be shortly. Well, that’s convenient. Might as well join them and socialize a bit. Setting the guns back into standby mode, the Android gave the weapons one last look, before departing for the Mess.

As he entered, the hall was mostly deserted, save for Yoshi, who was the one in charge of cooking tonight evidentially, and Zack, who seemed content to observe and obstruct. Taking a seat quietly at the table, “Tinman” settled his gaze on the door, wondering if there were any amongst the crew that he hadn’t already met. Not likely, but there was always rooms for surprises, even on a ship with such a small crew.

The slight shuffle of feet to his side caused the machine to turn, and he stared silently at Zack, who had occupied the spot whilst he was distracted. The recon specialist certainly had the potential to be a reoccurring surprise, at this rate. "Yep, I'm buying you a bell."

"Go for it Tinman, you still won't hear me coming if I don't want you to." That nickname had stuck awfully fast, hadn’t it? Before he had a chance to speak however, the rough woman from earlier dropped into the seat across from the two ex-soldiers, and spoke.

If he was being honest, he really didn’t pay attention to what she said, but Zack interrupted, and Therion flicked his eyes, not that anyone could tell, away from the gruff woman’s body. "Last time I checked, looking at my crew mates didn't warrant a late night visit, but I suppose I won't complain." Fat chance of that. Silence held over the trio for a moment or two longer, before Yoshi announced that the grub was on, and that it was time to eat.

Therion didn’t move, watching the others as they snatched up their food, and he mentally groaned when he felt a probing glance at his presence. Zack thankfully returned to distract the AI from his ‘flaws’ and the machine chuckled quietly at the man’s comment.

"Didn't you know? There's nothing I like more than sitting around listening to people complain about their lives. Fills me with joy at the very thought of it." It was a crock of shit, and he let it show. Oh it felt good to be casual.

Perceptive as ever, Zack shot back. "And here I thought I was the sarcastic bastard." He was better, to be fair, better at ensuring his jests were playful, instead of jerkish, but Therion had the advantage in years (not that he’d every share THAT particular tidbit).

“Always happy to help a breakthrough.” The doctor’s arrival caught his gaze, and he shifted his focus to the small man. He remained silent throughout the exchange; the medical needs of the proper human body had grown neglected in his years of travel.

"I've got a question for you, big boy," he asked. "I've got nearly any kind of equipment I need to keep the bio-members of this crew stitched up pretty well, but I've got no way of monitoring anything you've got hidden away in that shell if need be, so tell me, are you all metal or have you got anything fleshy and somewhat huggable underneath there?"

“Tinman” was suddenly very aware of several pairs of eyes upon him, and glanced quickly to the source of it, finding Archie to be the source, along with the Captain. Oh great. Attention. Just what I needed.

“What’s this, then? Are you saying this mechanical is not a VI?” He paused, quite taken aback by the revelation, “I must say that this is quite a surprise.” He looked toward Therion, examining him more fully. “Not on the run, are you, M’boy?”

Drumming his fingers into a rapid beat, the machine chuckled awkwardly. “Not a scrap of flesh left inside, Doc. They…took that when I…transferred to the ‘division’.” He forced the memories into the back of his mind, sealing them off without inhuman resolve. Not. Now. “So, as much as I appreciate the gesture, I’ll have to take care of myself for now. I’ll let you know if I ever need some tiny, steady hands.”

There was stillness in the air as he debated on how to answer Archie’s question, before he stilled completely, and addressed the man with a frigidly cold voice, one that fit his machine appearance far better than the one he used just moments before. “No. I’m not on the run. Just left the military is all. Simple as that.”

He'd consider that answer, sipping his drink and nods, "Another Veteran, then? We have quite some experience aboard, it seems." Therion gave a slow nod in response, and found himself content to stare down at his metallic knuckles as the others resumed their meals.
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Re: On Steel Wings

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