02 May YC124
Companion Services Admin Hub Fortizar, Archavoinet

“Heya, look at this,” the muscular Brutor said, indicating a nearby door. “Restricted, heh. Keeping something shady back there, probably. Let’s check it out.”

“Sir,” a nearby man warned. “Boss said to keep on the down low. These UNF folks are our hosts. Boss doesn’t want us stirring anything up.”

“You want to stay behind, feel free,” the Brutor replied. He pointed to the badge sewn on his shirt. “I’m going to honor this badge, and find out what this UNF is up to. They sure as hell are shady.”

“Sugbert, come on. Boss wants us to be back at quarters in two hours.”

“■■■■■■■ hell, boy, relax. We’ll be in and out, no sweat!” Sugbert said, wrenching open the door. “Come on, or stay behind. I don’t care. Rest of y’all, come on!” Sugbert marched into the adjoining corridor, reluctantly followed by the rest of his squad.

“Come on,” Sugbert whispered to his squad. “Final few rooms, then we’ll head back.” The group of Legionnaires crept down the side of the hallway.

“Hold on,” another Legionnaire whispered. “I hear voices. That door.” Sugbert nodded and stealthily headed for the indicated room first, stopping near the door and settling into a crouch.

“It’s like thalassophobia … ,” Sugbert strained to hear more.

“We shouldn’t be here, boss,” another Legionnaire whispered. “This is a restricted zone.”

“Shut up,” Sugbert said, easing the door open and peeking in. He saw a couple of children silhouetted against a large holoscreen. A pseudo-Triglavian man stood in a cone of light as red lightning and detonating ordnance created a sinister light show in the background. Sugbert flattened himself against the wall, one hand drifting down to undo the cover of his holster.

“Hey, hey, what the hell are you doing?” A Legionnaire whispered forcefully, putting his hand over Sugbert’s pistol.

“That was a Triglavian, and he’s on Skarkon. ■■■■■■■ stole my home, and these bastards are shielding them. I’ll show them that there’s consequences to being sympathizers of those invaders,” Sugbert said, shaking his hand free. He pulled the pistol, kicked in the door, and all hell broke loose.

“Boss!” Praetor Darim stormed into Duke Shasta Ariend’s office. “We’ve got a problem!”

The duke sighed, setting aside the stack of paperwork before him. “Okay, what sort of problem?”

“Idiot troopers got into an altercation with UNF personnel, resulting in casualties. Two dead, three injured, all critical.”

“You’re kidding,” the duke said, rising to his feet. “MPs on site?”

“They’re around, but UNF’s been keeping them at arm’s length.” The praetor checked the datapad in his hand.

“Alright, come on. Details on the incident?” The duke spoke over his shoulder as he strode quickly for the exit.

“Few, sir. Erm … we don’t have any conscious witnesses who aren’t UNF personnel. It appears one of the troopers opened fire with his service weapon, though.”

“Geez. Who were the troopers? Known troublemakers?”

“Squad of five, on temporary assignment from Venal to help deal with the piracy problem. Most of them are rather clean, except their corporal. Anneh Sugbert, former Angel Cartel member. Got a bit of a sheet. Nothing recently, though, so no MP tail.”

“Damn. Alright, keep all Legionnaires in quarters until this can be sorted out. Will our raid be affected by this?”

“They shouldn’t, boss. We’ve got enough men for the op, and I can transfer more in if necessary,” the praetor said confidently. “That said, morale might drop a little, seeing as how two of our men got killed and all, and the rest are being confined to quarters. I’ll make the rounds, try to calm them down, but the sooner we resolve this, the better.”

The duke sighed. “I want disciplinary action taken against each survivor. I’ll leave the details to you. Now. When does the op commence?”

“Dropships are ready. They can launch from Base Two within five minutes of the “go”, sir.”

“This is the go. Execute the op immediately.”

“Yes, sir.”

Meanwhile, in a Dark Wolf Legion occupied hangar in the abandoned Minmatar station off Eugales gate in Archavoinet

“Go, go, go!” a grizzled sergeant shouted, holding a helmet in his hand and pointing to a dropship with his other hand. “Klenzig, you’re in Vigilance 2. Go!”

“Sir, yes, sir!” the sergeant clad in red and black combat armor shouted, snapping a salute. “Let’s go!” Private Jemoto Fujirnheimer followed his squad as they ran towards the squat dropship at the end of the cavernous hangar bay. As they ran, Fujirnheimer could hear a flurry of radio traffic across a variety of channels.

“Status of my eyes?”

“Vigilance 1, red ball. Vigilance 2, 3, 4, red ball. Vigilance 5, confirm full load.”

“Control, Vigilance 5. Confirming full load and requesting green ball.”

“Copy, green ball. I repeat, Vigilance 5 has green ball.”

“Scout ship overhead target location.”

Fujirnheimer saw a plume of smoke began enveloping the first dropship as it rose into the air, a traffic controller on the ground waving wands to guide the dropship towards the bay entrance. One by one, the dropships lifted off. Fujirnheimer ducked instinctively as one glided over his hPead, foam in his ears automatically expanding to protect his ears from being damaged by the deep thrum of the thrusters.

“This one’s us!” Sergeant Klenzig shouted, stopping at one dropship with its ramp down. “Get in! Get in!”

Without breaking stride, the squad charged into the waiting vessel, with Sergeant Klenzig and Private Fujirnheimer bringing up the rear. Nary a second after they had stepped aboard, a crewman in a jumpsuit slapped the ramp control and shouted into his radio, “Go! Go! Go!”

Up in the cockpit, Ahzu Tesen and Yamagi Keneko were running final checks. “All systems green?” Keneko asked her copilot.

“Yes, ma’am. We’re ready to go. I’ll call it in.”

Keneko began her final check, tuning out Tesen’s raspy voice talking to the traffic controller on the radio.

“Keneko, we have green ball. How engines?” Tesen cut in.

“We’re good,” she said, making a thumbs up to the traffic controller below. “Lifting off.”

The bulky vessel slowly navigated the bay, following the lights set into the ceiling towards the void beyond.

“Switching to V-general,” Tesen said. “Desto set?”

“Desto set,” Keneko confirmed. “Clear of bay. Prepare for warp.”


“In warp,” Keneko said as the ship vanished into the blue warp tunnel.


This topic was automatically closed 90 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.