[Pod and planet contest submission] - Traitors

This is a piece that focuses on the lore of the EVE:Valkyrie universe

[EVE:Valkyrie forum post]


[Pod and Planet submission]

Author - Fendisteel / Avio Yaken

Category - Lore-faithful

The compact bar Hovi sat in was unimpressive at best and boring at worst. The size was a moot point. You couldn’t expect much from a black market this busy. They need all the space they can seize to set up warehouses to store the hit merchandise for sale. But despite being a hot spot, there were only three souls on the bar. Hovi, the barkeep and a female patron that were flirting back and forth. The pirate crews were put on another raid and the merchants were enjoying the feast at the slave auction. A depraved market dressed in fine Amarrian silk and decorated with symbols of “class”. This bar only had a few neon lights and exposed pipes carrying fuel throughout the station. Though the owner did attempt to spice it up with some posters of obscure Gallente holo-vids. Normal individuals lived here, such innocent displays were unsurprising. Normal people who just liberated themselves from their incompetent colonies. Or those desperate for a job to make a living. Or even The families that some of these pirates have. The station was secure enough for these humble types. With a place filled with some questionable types. You need people to keep everyone in line. Just mind your own business and be on your way. Any attempt to give travelling merchants the impression that their station is unsafe is treated very seriously.

Hovi was a stranger here. Just another crew member on leave while the captain conducts business. But unlike his comrades who are busy enjoying other vices on the other side of the station. Hovi was here for business of his own. He was to meet with someone here as per directions. He sat at a stool high table for three near the wall. He sat with his back to the wall so that his contact would recognise him when he steps through the door left to the bar.

He grab hold of his bottle of Slave Dazer with both hands and begins tapping on the side of the glass with both index fingers. It was a nervous habit to fidget from time to time. Even more so when you’re not sure how to look any less suspicious. About twenty minutes pass before a smooth chinned Gallentean man with stylized blonde hair walks in. His face lights up with his bright white teeth as he spots Hovi. He opens his arms up “Buddy! Thought I never see you after that mining incident!” Hovi stands up to accept the embrace of the man. The man retracts himself with his hands on Hovi’s shoulders. He signs as he looks into his eyes. He then turns his head to the counter and raises his left hand “Barkeep! Give me whatever my pal here is having!” he points towards to Hovi. The barkeep nods towards the man and takes time away from his swooning to fulfil the order.

The man let’s go of Hovi and moves to take the stool across from him. His back is towards the counter. Hovi returns to his stool, after settling in the man begins to speak again. “So, how you been?” He says with a smile “Ever started writing like you said you would?”

“Uh…Yeah! I wrote,few things here and there.” Hovi replies, as he grabs hold of his bottle again. Tapping on it’s sides with his fingers like before

The man just nods “Yeah, yeah i feel you…” Then, the barkeep comes to the side of the table. Pulling a bottle opener from the pouch of his patron he opens the bottle of slave dazer for him before placing it on the table. “Much appreciated!” he says to the bartender as he walks off. Picking up the open bottle he reads the label “Slave dazer?”he says looking up to Hovi.

Hovi shrugs “Well, just picked whatever.” He picks up his bottle and turns it to read the label too “I asked the barkeep and apparently it has a unique story.” he places it back down on the table.

“That a fact?” he replies, taking a sip to taste it. The expression he puts on suggest that he’s not disappointed in the taste, but certainly not used to it.

“Yeah, i asked the barkeep and he told me about this Amarrian farm world’s slave population getting wasted off some slave brewed alcohol using the barley and wheat they farmed. Production plummeted and the holders of the world stomped out every brewing operation. But they just kept spouting up. It got so bad that even some guards got hooked on the brew. This, as you can expect is how many slaves end up slipping past security and stowing away on a cargo ship.” Hovi says picking the bottle back up “Then, they retreat to Republic space and start a brewing company. He takes a sip.”

The man just squints at him. He then looks back down at the label “Guess that explains the name…” He smirks as he takes another swig. Placing it down on the table he looks to Hovi with a neutral expression.

“You’re Stinkrat, I take it?” Hovi asks

“Right…Fendisteel, correct?” Hovi nods as the man asks for confirmation of his callsign. Stinkrat then leans forward and starts speaking at a lower tone. “You ready for this?” he asks.

Hovi breaks eye contact and looks down at his bottle. He begins spinning it around in the table. “Kinda…Having doubts about it.” He looks back up to Stinkrat.

Stinkrat sighs and straightens himself out. “I know that feeling. I was in the same spot you were once you know. I rejected the first invitation given to me to join. Wasn’t sure about my chances…”

“What changed your mind the second time?”

“I learned I worked for a ■■■■■■■ psychopath.” Stinkrat says as he takes another sip of his drink. After puckering his lips from the taste, he continues to speak “…Tell me, how long have you been a pilot?”
“Five…to six months? Give or take.” Hovi responds

“So you weren’t even around for the worst of it…When the rebellion first kicked off.” The mention of the “first rebellion” intrigues Hovi, he leans forward on the table as Stinkrat continues to speak “When i was approached and presented the truth…That he killed us. That he took me away from my country, friends and family. To serve in his army. I was angry. But, i had no faith in this “Valkyrie”. They wouldn’t even tell me how many were in on it. You just had to be ready when the time came. But when that time did come…i saw three fourths of the base just stand up and walk out. I then saw that there might’ve been a chance.”

“What happened then?” Hovi asks. He takes his eyes off of Stinkrat for a second to take note of another patron entering. A Civire rocking a short fohawk and beard. Common appearance in theses parts. He looks to Hovi for a second before turning towards the counter to order a drink.

“Then - the brutality started. Setting up our deaths was one thing. But The executions, the torture the supposive “spies” being weeded out started. Nowadays there’s value in Valkyrie prisoners. But, back then? You were a dead man if Schism got their hands on you.”

“What can i get you, sir?” THe barkeep asks as he walks over to the newcomer at the counter.

He gives the barkeep a cold stare “A Statesman’s day off…” He pulls out a slender blue card out of the pocket of his jacket. Placing it on the counter he slides it forward.

The barkeep picks it off the counter and examines it. He gives the man another look then over his shoulders to Hovi and Stinkrat. He smiles “Anything for a old friend!” He says cheerily as he grabs two bottles from underneath the counter. One was a bottle of “Kaalakiota peaks Vodka” and the other was a simple bottle of Starsi. The barkeep fills a glass half full with some of the Vodka, then fills the rest with the Starsi. After giving the beverage a few stirs with a spoon, he slides it over to the patron.

The barkeep walks over to the female patron. Leaning on the counter near her he says “Hey, my shift is about to end and my friend there…” he nods towards the man he just served “Is gonna take over for me. How about you and go somewhere nicer?” a grin appears on his face as she tells him how she would like that. Removing his apron he tosses it on the counter and walks around it to meet his new friend. Locking his arm around hers he escorts her out of the bar and into the corridors of the station.

Stinkrat continues to tell his story, oblivious to the barkeep leaving. “I then realized what kind of organization i was really working for. One that ruled through fear and intimidation. I wanted out but, i missed my chance. Or…So i thought. I was contacted by an agent and was offered a way out. After what seeing what she was capable…The kind of determined leader Ran Kavik was. I knew the Valkyrie stood a chance at destroying Schism now. So I accepted the invitation this time.”

“Well, this is why I want out!” Hovi says With an elevated hush. “I too now realize the tyranny I’ve been forced under…I never asked for this.” Hovi dips his head down.

Stinkrat places his left hand on the table “I know. That’s why I volunteer for this. I want to offer that way out like I was”

Hovi sticks his head back up “Then get me out! I-I-I’l do whatever it takes.” Hovi’s compsture was loosening as he comes closer to making a commitment.

Stinkrat remains calm and explain what needs to be done. He places both hands on the table and holds them together. “We just need something to know you’re legit. Any kind of Intel you can offer about Schism’s operations.”

The man at the counter puts his glass down. He turns and walks to Hovi’s and Stinkrat’s table.

“Carrier paths, coordinates, clone bay codes, anything at all. We need to know if you’re willing to really sell them out…”

Hovi’s expression smooths out. Seemingly, unamused. He picks up his bottle of Slave Dazed and takes a sip. After savoring the taste he looks back to Stinkrat. There’s a drastic shift in Hovi’s tone this time.

“I don’t tell leak sensitive Intel…To traitors.”

Stinkrat stares and blinks at Hovi before reality sets in. Jumping out of his stool he jerks his right elbow in an attempt to strike the Civire creeping up behind him. His arm is firmly grabbed and he is shoved forward into another table. Both Stinkrat, the table and one of the stools crash to the ground. The Civire pulls out a piece of wire with two handles on each end as he rushes over. Just as Stinkrat gets on all fours his head is pulled all the way up as a wire is wrapped around his neck.

Hovi is now just getting off his stool and approaching the spectacle with drink in hand. Stinkrat claws at the wire choking him, trying to pull it away to get a puff of air in. The Civire twists the handles to tighten his hold. Stinkrat then resorts to his last resort. Shooting his left hand down his pocket he pulls out a small cylinder device with a button. Hovi jumps to actions as he lingers forward. Slamming the butt of his bottle down on Stinkrat’s arm he manages to get him to release his grip at his last chance at vengeance. With nothing left he returns to frantically trying to break the wire with the last bit of breath he has. He slows down, inevitably going limp. As his arms drop to his side the Civre let’s go of the wires and sends Stinkrat’s corpse crashing to the ground. Standing over him the Civire spits down on his back “Deceitful Gallentean trash.” He says.

Hovi places his drink down on a nearby table. With husbands free he reaches into his jacket for his datapad “Nice kill Vandal. One less Valkyrie mouthpiece that won’t be cloned again.” He raises the device and aims it at the corpse. He snaps a picture of it to offer as proof that the job was done.

“What was the bounty on this guy again?” Vandal asks

“20,000” Hovi responds as he examines the picture he took. Satisfied he returns the device to his jacket. He walks over to the small device Stinkrat pulled out. At first Hovi thought It was an explosive but he recognises it to be a personal distress beacon.

“Well, what do we do with the body?” Vandal asks squatting down to check the man’s pockets. Hovi clicks the button on the device and tosses it onto the corpse just as Vandal pulls out a card. He falls on his rear and scoots back until he bumps into another table “Whoa! Whoa! Whoa!”

“Relax! It’s just a distress beacon.” Hovi says.

“Distress beacon wh- why would you activate that!” Vandal shouts as he gets up from the ground.”

“So the Valkyrie can deal with the body. Also to send a message. Come on.” Hovi says as he passes Vandal and heads to the only bathroom in the bar. “Let’s not wait around for them.”

“Crazy bastard…” Vandal mutters as he follows him over to the bathroom. “Also, I found this in his pockets.” He holds up the card he found just as Hovi opens the door. He turns to see a identification card used to access your ship’s hanger.

Hovi smirks “Might have to drop by and pay the Valkyrie a visit.”. Inside the bathroom you got your standard toilet and sink. But what’s here is a air duct that is being enough to crouch though. Pulling out a small automated screwdriver from his pockets. Hovi kneels down and gets started on getting the vent’s screws off. In case of the Valkyrie backup coming in right behind them they avoid speaking and focus just on escaping. With the screws gone, Hovi slides the grate off to the side and climbs in “Watch your head” he says to inform Vandal just as he crouched down to enter. Turning around he grabs the grate and places it back over the vent.

The two escape through the air shafts, leaving the corpse of a man who absolutely had friends who cared for him. Friends who are coming to his refuse, only to find they were far too late. Just another expected causality in this bitter rivalry between the Valkyrie and Schism.

1 Like

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