Reply to topic  [ 351 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15  Next
What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic) 
Author Message
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:57 am
Posts: 116
Location: Czech republic
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
raistlin34 wrote:
Is foreshadowing what I´m reading? :o :D


If you had a pinpoint-accurate jump drive that could warp into docking range, you'd have a pinpoint-accurate jump drive that could warp an antimatter-filled torpedo into the hull. At that point, you've jumped straight to Schlockian Terrapedos, and the war is over; the Umiak have lost, and the Loroi are experiencing brown trousers time, now that it is suddenly of absolutely critical importance they make friends with the pink apes.

Terrapedos, how I love thee!
The only thing as close as scary as a General Contact Unit named 'Meatfucker' with its GridFire Array.

_________________
Si vis pacem, para bellum. - If you wish for peace, prepare for war.


Sat Jul 09, 2016 1:22 pm
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:57 am
Posts: 116
Location: Czech republic
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Oh god. I am an idiot. I fail at mathematics for ever. Please. Kill me. The result was 3,469 tonnes. Not kilotons. The firepower is well in range of Real Sci-Fi weaponry. Oh god. This feels like the famed 'Telepanty' Debacle all over again.

_________________
Si vis pacem, para bellum. - If you wish for peace, prepare for war.


Sat Jul 09, 2016 1:40 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
I figured that was the case. Even so, they're still capable of doing more damage than a Historian Plasma Focus on Overload at knife-fighting ranges.

The trick remains getting into knife-fight range.


Sat Jul 09, 2016 1:50 pm
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2012 6:12 pm
Posts: 273
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:

Also, I was rapidly running towards the nebulous "when Notepad++ says the wordcount is 55,000, stop writing" limit. Kind of a shame, really, I had wanted to have Alex show that picture of a Supermarine Spitfire to Talon, and have her first express disbelief that it was capable of flight, and then incredulity that Alexander's people were flying those things as top-of-the-line technology 225 years ago, literally within a Loroi lifetime.

So far, the shoe hasn't dropped. Nobody with the intelligence and context to understand how fast human technology has advanced has seen any of the hints dropped about human tech from earlier. When it does, well...

Loremark lived a long life by Loroi standards in the absence of violent death. She was 459 years old. Round that to 460 and subtract it from where humanity is as of Outsider, and you're in the Golden Age of Sail, and Edward Teach is the most fearsome devil sailing the West Indies, (Edward Kenway excepted). Meanwhile, it took the Loroi 525 years to go from the industrial revolution to Sputnik.

The Loroi and Umiak have a hell of a headstart, but humanity are catching up by virtue of riding the technological equivalent of a rocket-powered death-dragster.


I don't know if you've dug them up yet, but we've actually had pretty extensive discussions on the relative rates of technological advancement for humanity and the Loroi. Just an FYI, but here's something Arioch said - http://www.well-of-souls.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=17262#p17262.

I enjoyed your latest installment (loved what Alex pulled on Talon). Looking forward to more.


Sat Jul 09, 2016 1:54 pm
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2012 6:12 pm
Posts: 273
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Durabys wrote:
Oh god. I am an idiot. I fail at mathematics for ever. Please. Kill me. The result was 3,469 tonnes. Not kilotons. The firepower is well in range of Real Sci-Fi weaponry. Oh god. This feels like the famed 'Telepanty' Debacle all over again.


Haha, you're good, man. Math errors happen, but that misspelling of "telepathically" was pretty epic. NOMAD still hasn't quite lived that one down...


Sat Jul 09, 2016 2:00 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Mr Bojangles wrote:
I don't know if you've dug them up yet, but we've actually had pretty extensive discussions on the relative rates of technological advancement for humanity and the Loroi. Just an FYI, but here's something Arioch said - http://www.well-of-souls.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=17262#p17262.


I think I had read that a while ago. Frankly, I put it down to "this is what this race is culturally geared for." Just like the Umiak and Loroi are culturally geared for domination, humanity is culturally geared for innovation. In small part, I think, this is due to both major races's status as inheritors of a long-ago dead race's technology. They're caught in the rut the Imperium of Man is, of always thinking of "the ancients" as having been better and superior, and thus there's more interest in rediscovering what "the ancients" had than in researching new things for themselves. The discovery of the psionic amplifier helps to reinforce this.

Mainly, though, I suspect it's because we're the only ones who write science fiction.

Quote:
I enjoyed your latest installment (loved what Alex pulled on Talon). Looking forward to more.


Technically, he didn't pull anything on her at all. He just let her walk blindly into something someone else was pulling. :)


Sat Jul 09, 2016 2:02 pm
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2012 6:12 pm
Posts: 273
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Mr Bojangles wrote:
I don't know if you've dug them up yet, but we've actually had pretty extensive discussions on the relative rates of technological advancement for humanity and the Loroi. Just an FYI, but here's something Arioch said - http://www.well-of-souls.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=17262#p17262.


I think I had read that a while ago. Frankly, I put it down to "this is what this race is culturally geared for." Just like the Umiak and Loroi are culturally geared for domination, humanity is culturally geared for innovation. In small part, I think, this is due to both major races's status as inheritors of a long-ago dead race's technology. They're caught in the rut the Imperium of Man is, of always thinking of "the ancients" as having been better and superior, and thus there's more interest in rediscovering what "the ancients" had than in researching new things for themselves. The discovery of the psionic amplifier helps to reinforce this.

Mainly, though, I suspect it's because we're the only ones who write science fiction.


If you read my post above that one, I agree. Humanity's "gearing" is recent in our history, but once we let our curiosity get the better of us, we were off. And, that seems to be a unique thing in Outsider.

ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Quote:
I enjoyed your latest installment (loved what Alex pulled on Talon). Looking forward to more.


Technically, he didn't pull anything on her at all. He just let her walk blindly into something someone else was pulling. :)


Well, he could have warned her. But, like any true best friend, he let her blunder right into it and got a chuckle out of it. :)


Sat Jul 09, 2016 2:18 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Mr Bojangles wrote:
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Quote:
I enjoyed your latest installment (loved what Alex pulled on Talon). Looking forward to more.


Technically, he didn't pull anything on her at all. He just let her walk blindly into something someone else was pulling. :)


Well, he could have warned her. But, like any true best friend, he let her blunder right into it and got a chuckle out of it. :)


Exactly. A mere friend would have warned her and she could have grabbed a pistol while she was aboard Coldfjord courtesy of Spiral. :P


Sat Jul 09, 2016 2:25 pm
Profile

Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2011 9:33 pm
Posts: 681
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
harlequin2262 wrote:
If nothing else, the general transliteration can be applied, even if the meter and rhyme is wasted. If they heard him speak it though, at least a measure of it could be retained.
I imagine poetry to be something the Loroi struggle with as well, being as rooted as it is with creative mistruths.
Actually, it's mostly rooted in the rhyme & meter: the syllabic structure makes it easier to memorize the contents, since it makes them semi-regular. Prose works well when written, or in some other way recorded, but reciting it from memory is also harder, hence the reason that plays traditionally contained poetry instead of prose.

The flowery content has some historicity, but mostly because having more ways to say something makes it easier to fit it into the chosen poetic structure. Traditionally poetry wasn't normally written just to be a form of art, even if that was one of the goals, whereas today it's fairly common for poetry to be written for it's own sake.

There's an Egyptian myth that's passingly relevant: when Thoth invented writing, one of the gods (either Osiris or Ra, I forget which) expressed the concern that the people might forget how to remember.


Sat Jul 09, 2016 10:09 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Mar 12, 2015 5:00 pm
Posts: 329
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
I came to think about the popularity of E-sports, especially in South Korea where StarCraft live feeds are popular entertainment nowadays. If a certain bar owner sold the feed to some network Talon & Spiral could have become celebrities with a following of fans eager to get autographs! :mrgreen: And earn a buck once they sue for a piece of earnings for the feed. I doubt individual loroi in the fleet have any money of their own other then perhaps an allowance to sample the local R&R opportunities.

I also came to think about the welcoming drink Alex got, while anything willingly consumed are probably tested for the loroi to avoid incidents. There is however always the possibility of a say, a wasp finding it's way beneath the armour of an unlucky warrior causing some interesting effect. Mosquitos on the other would not find them palatable at all letting an loroi be amused at the sight of Alex & Kelly waving their arms swearing in an desperate attempt to get rid of the pests. There is a lot of possibilities. :twisted:


Sun Jul 10, 2016 1:38 am
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Sweforce wrote:
I came to think about the popularity of E-sports, especially in South Korea where StarCraft live feeds are popular entertainment nowadays. If a certain bar owner sold the feed to some network Talon & Spiral could have become celebrities with a following of fans eager to get autographs! :mrgreen: And earn a buck once they sue for a piece of earnings for the feed. I doubt individual Loroi in the fleet have any money of their own other then perhaps an allowance to sample the local R&R opportunities.


What makes you think that the video from those engagements isn't already making the rounds?
Things will be so much better for everyone involved if the Loroi never access the internet directly.... :?

Sooooo many trolls ("Fake!" "So fake!" "I can see the holo-pixels!", "Acktually, this is just some girl in cosplay, real Loroi look nothing like us because obviously,") assholes ("So, where's the guy who's actually flying that sim,") and weirdos ("I have found mah waifu. Human women: Goodbye!")

Quote:
I also came to think about the welcoming drink Alex got, while anything willingly consumed are probably tested for the Loroi to avoid incidents. There is however always the possibility of a say, a wasp finding it's way beneath the armour of an unlucky warrior causing some interesting effect. Mosquitos on the other would not find them palatable at all letting an loroi be amused at the sight of Alex & Kelly waving their arms swearing in an desperate attempt to get rid of the pests. There is a lot of possibilities. :twisted:


Well, we've already established that they can handle alcohol in moderate amounts without any particular harm or impairment... Also, now you've put in my head the idea of Fireblade causing huge pressure snaps to disperse clouds of mosquitos down by the Mississippi.


Sun Jul 10, 2016 1:43 am
Profile

Joined: Sun Nov 08, 2015 8:46 am
Posts: 87
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Besides the "bug war", human sci -fi has conceived other possible enemies, like A.I and robots or godlike eldritch abominations. I wonder what would Loroi think about Asimov or Lovecraft works. Did they even conceive the possibility of finding entities which would make the Soians look like toddlers in comparation?


Sun Jul 10, 2016 1:55 am
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
raistlin34 wrote:
Besides the "bug war", human sci -fi has conceived other possible enemies, like A.I and robots or godlike eldritch abominations. I wonder what would Loroi think about Asimov or Lovecraft works.


Probably something between being aghast at how much time humans waste in the pursuit of trivial entertainment, turning to shock when they realize how that "pursuit of trivial entertainment" and broad-spectrum, seemingly-aimless education has primed humans for insanely fast technological advancement and for conflicts that they literally only imagined.

I mean, at some point, Kelly is going to ask why the Loroi ships all look so good and have things like mosiacs and holo-sculptures aboard. Alex is going to literally use the phrase "It's Protoss versus Zerg out there; and the shells are the Zerg," and just like that, an entire ten or twenty paragraph's worth of discussion on quality versus quantity will have been encapsulated in one sentence.

Starcraft V will probably have been released by 2160, right? :)


Sun Jul 10, 2016 2:02 am
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:57 am
Posts: 116
Location: Czech republic
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Starcraft V will probably have been released by 2160, right? :)

One would think Half Life 3 was released by then.. :roll:

_________________
Si vis pacem, para bellum. - If you wish for peace, prepare for war.


Sun Jul 10, 2016 3:03 am
Profile
Moderator
User avatar

Joined: Thu May 12, 2011 8:38 am
Posts: 512
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Durabys wrote:
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Starcraft V will probably have been released by 2160, right? :)

One would think Half Life 3 was released by then.. :roll:


Nah, that's scheduled sometime around the heat death of the universe, a cousins friends uncles sisters fathers brothers former room mate works at Valve, so I'm in the know.

Episode 3 might be out then though.

_________________
Image

This is my Mod voice. If you see this in a thread, it means that the time for gentle reminders has passed.


Sun Jul 10, 2016 5:22 am
Profile

Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2011 9:33 pm
Posts: 681
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Razor One wrote:
Durabys wrote:
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Starcraft V will probably have been released by 2160, right? :)

One would think Half Life 3 was released by then.. :roll:


Nah, that's scheduled sometime around the heat death of the universe, a cousins friends uncles sisters fathers brothers former room mate works at Valve, so I'm in the know.

Episode 3 might be out then though.
Shoot, everyone knows that Half Life 4 will be out before 3.


Sun Jul 10, 2016 8:49 pm
Profile

Joined: Wed May 20, 2015 2:14 am
Posts: 459
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Information update to all Loroi :


Results of yesterdays diplomatic meetings:

Please use the formal military greeting when greeting guests of our Human Friends.
The Listel assigned to your ship has been instructed to teach all Loroi the fine parts of this particular etiquette (when to greet first, when to keep the greeting until relieved, when to wait for a greeting).
Your commander will also excercise this greeting with all of you.
It has been agreed with Humanities counterparts, that this greeting will suffice instead of their usual handshakes.
This will avoid any misunderstandings, underline us being a militaristic society, and furthermore this will avoid you from having to touch a Human.



Any other business:

Furthermore: IT IS STRICTLY FORBIDDEN TO DISGUISE AS A HUMAN.
The following footage has been taken in a Human coffee shop: https://youtu.be/VlOxlSOr3_M?t=54s .
We are currently investigating, and if the Loroi concerned does not come forward out of her own, we will punish her harshly.
Furthermore, besides any reprimands, she will have to do "compulsory volunteer work" as our Human liaisons have explained. This "compulsory volunteer work" will be chosen in cooperation between the Loroi concerned, her commander, our Human liaison, and the coffee shop owner who got his property damaged.

Furthermore, we once again remind you to NOT test any Human beverages or meals until our medics have declared them safe.
We have a list of Human meals which are considered safe, and the canteens of our host bases will have a menu available for those who desire to taste Human meals. For the time being, they will be served without any spices.
Please do not bring your own Loroi spices, as we do not yet fully understand the interaction between some Human and Loroi ingredients.
If you decide to sample Human meals, you will receive a small badge by the personnel of the Human canteen. Please keep this badge with you, especially if you tried this sepcific menu for the first time. If you feel unwell after having visited a Human canteed, visit the infirmary immediately. Our doctors will then immediately know what you have tasted, and can therefore check specifically if this had any surprising influence on your metabolism.
Coffee has not yet been declared "safe" for Loroi use. Despite the effects being seemingly benign, there are too many effects observable for our medics to declare Human coffee safe yet.
Tap below if you want more information about coffee
Spoiler: show
Coffee is a drink that most Humans seem to love, and have been offering to us since the very first meeting on their bases.
Especially the smell of freshly brewed coffee seems to be able to wake complete brigades of Humans within a very short time.
While no negative effects have been observed on Loroi yet, typical effects are hyperactivity, restlessness, hypersensitivity (telepathically, and physical sensory - touch, hearing, sight, smell), and a general feeling of happiness and well-being. - Research into the advantages/disadvantages and possible militaric use of coffee for our farseers is ongoing with a high priority.
The use of coffee before sports is, for the time being, additionally considered as abuse of performance improving medication, despite coffee not actively improving the build-up of muscles, or even improving the performance of muscles. The exact working of coffee on the Loroi biochemistry is also under investigation. (Note: the Human terminology for performance improving medication is "doping".)
We also noticed that coffee seems to cause addiction among Humans, despite lack of any physical addiction indicators.
Coffee therefore remains on the prohited list.
We have also been warned, that "Do you want to come "upstairs/to my home/inside" for a cup of coffee?" does have a completely different meaning. The Loroi who have accepted this offer felt very abused, because they have been lied to, and believed that there would be a cup of coffee waiting for them. Apparently, this question is actually a mating call. This lead to severe misunderstandings. We are currently researching why Humans use obvious lies as mating calls, and why these lies seem to be successful.
For the time being, we advice to decline any offer for coffee.

_________________
Vote for Outsider on TWC: Image


Last edited by Krulle on Mon Jul 11, 2016 2:04 am, edited 2 times in total.



Mon Jul 11, 2016 1:35 am
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Krulle: Funny, very funny.


============================


Commodore Fragile Storm, not for the first time, missed Glory, her old command vessel. In this instance, she missed it because it was larger than Retribution and had more facilities available to it, and larger cargo bays more capable of absorbing extra crew. Still, though, a Catapult-class Heavy Carrier was far, far too slow, when the mission parameters involved potentially making several hard burns through contested systems before a breakout into the undesirable, uninhabited and largely unexploitable systems of the Great Wastelands to make the crossing to the homes of humanity.

Still, even with an acceleration minimum on the vessels she could use, she felt they could have at least afforded her a Swift Vanguard-class Battlecruiser. A Vortex would have been even more preferable, but the only way they were getting Stillstorm off the bridge of Tempest was if she were dead, or upgrading to a Sector Command Ship.
I am not certain she would not reclassify Tempest as her Sector Command Ship if she were promoted, Fragile Storm's twin sent to her. The duo were sitting in Fragile Storm's office, not at her desk but at a small circular table in the middle, the remains of a meal shared together having been cleaned away, their hands clasped tightly.
Fragile Storm could not help but smile as her twin picked up on her thoughts and joked with her about them, mirth filling her. I fear you are correct, sister; only an upgrade to an Imperial flag vessel is certain to get her off that ship.

A shudder ran through Fragile Storm. Emperor Stillstorm? Matters would be truly desperate for the Diadem Council to appoint her.
Matters are already quite desperate, sister, Fragile Storm pointed out, and a sarcastic laugh came from Fragile Spear.
Point taken. Still, she is a group commander without peer.
Indeed, her tactical acumen is beyond reproach, but her larger strategies are limited, and there is only so much ground that can be given before one must stand and fight or lose by default. The inside of the Union cannot be treated as the Charred Steppes.

Fragile Storm was quiet for a few moments, and nodded. Let us hope it does not come to that. For now, at least, improved miniaturization and refit classes are turning the tide in our favor.
More returning to balance, I would say. Better-armed corvettes will not win this war, regardless of how well Captain Jardin seems able to make use of them.
The refit frigate and destroyer classes should be ready soon, Fragile Storm pointed out, and her sister filled with faint hope. Perhaps, just perhaps, a fast raiding fleet composed of refit vessels would be capable of making a strike into the shell's territory. But we are a far cry from being capable of mounting another Semoset.

And just as well; the last one was an unmitigated disaster, Fragile Storm sent, and she and her sister both shuddered, squeezing one another's hands tightly. They had both narrowly survived the debacle that had claimed the lives and ships of most of the Loroi's largest and most advanced fleet. Still, successfully annihilating even a few of their forward planets would ease the burden on our defenders. And we owe them for Seren and a lot of other worlds.
Fragile Spear gritted her teeth, her emotions hardening, and she stroked her twin's palms with her thumbs. Agreed. And you are thinking that Captain Jardin's act of desperation may be the key to enacting our retribution?

Fragile Storm peered into her twin's eyes. It would greatly simplify any such endeavors if parts of the shell's bivouac systems could be bypassed. If we had been capable of doing that during the Semoset Campaign, Sunfall would still be with us.
Do you believe the feat to be duplicable? I've had our navigators look at the alleged long-jump; they believe it to have been a probable fluke unlikely to be duplicable elsewhere, certainly not without far greater risk. Fragile Spear's skepticism was obvious, and Fragile Storm nodded.
It does seem unlikely. Yet those very same navigators believed the feat to be outright impossible until shown the evidence that it had in fact been done, did they not? Fragile Storm smirked slightly, as her sister nodded.
Unquestionably this is the case, sister, Fragile Spear conceded, as her twin's thumbs hooked around her own, curling into them. She sighed, slowly, closing her eyes; uncertainty for the future filled her and unnerved her, as they did her twin, but as always the pair bolstered one another.

After a few moments of indulgently sharing thoughtless worries and comfort with one another, Fragile Storm felt her sister distracted by something, her sister relaying after a moment. The bridge reports that Swiftwind has launched from the human docking facility on the satellite of Earth, and Swiftwind has communicated their intention to dock with us for prisoner transfer.

Fragile Storm nodded, closing her eyes. Something will need to be done with Opalstorm. Her sister agreed, and she looked up at the ceiling of her office. The idea you proposed in jest yesterday is growing in appeal.
Assigning Opalstorm to his command? She would find that intolerable, Fragile Spear cautioned, and her twin nodded.
I know. She would either learn some tolerance, or she would become intimately acquainted with the inside of a brig owing to frequent visitation.
Perhaps, sister, perhaps, Fragile Spear conceded, but I fear it would have a... Corrosive effect on the crew, if she were placed in their chain of command.
I did not mean to imply assigning her to a position of authority by assigning her to the crew. As long as Jardin is Captain, he alone decides who holds what responsibilities. He would be within his rights to assign her no subordinates and no position of authority, making her in effect an observer and at best a personal adjutant to himself.

Fragile Spear mulled the thought over for a bit, weighing the potential ups and downs. Although the idea is appealing in the sense of making her someone else's problem, I think it unwise. Opalstorm would find such a state of affairs enraging, and would challenge him to a duel... A duel which he would be under no obligation to accept, owing to her prior misbehavior being sufficiently bad as to have her arrested, admittedly. And, of course, he does not come from a background where duels are, even in the remotest circumstances, permissible as remedy for grievances. If his crew are as enamored of him as reported, it is not likely they would lose confidence in his leadership if he rejected such a challenge, either.

Fragile Storm smiled, and slowly ran her thumbs up, along the outside of her sister's index fingers, causing Fragile Spear's eyes to close. Still, I worry that she might become simply incensed. Opalstorm sees herself as an iron taskmaster, a strict disciplinarian and a good leader beset on all sides by incompetence, sloppiness and laziness, but she is in fact a self-righteous bully, one I have been unable to thus far correct. I have been unable to successfully discipline her, as she is apparently capable of misconstruing anything she is told to mean that she hasn't been sufficiently strict with her subordinates.

Do you think you can turn that around after she has spent time becoming familiar with the inside of a holding cell, Fragile Storm asked, and her twin squeezed her hands.
I believe it is possible. She has gone sufficiently far that I can strip her of responsibilities and enact corrective measures.

Fragile Storm nodded. I see. On the other hand, Jardin's crew, it seems, refuses to be bullied by her. She would not be able to win any status or position back by personal achievement, he would require her to demonstrate that she is capable of winning his crew's respect.
Fragile Spear was instantly dubious. After her prior behavior, I believe that may be entirely impossible. You really do relish the thought of making Opalstorm into Jardin's problem, don't you?
She could only smile in turn. It is very... Appealing. If I must put up with the source of my indignities remaining in command of a Loroi light escort squadron, if I must endure him being seemingly capable of repeatedly performing the impossible, I might as well harness his penchant for performing feats he has no business being capable of performing to offload the onerous task of reforming Opalstorm.

Her sister shook with silent mirth, barely restraining herself from a bout of giggling, which nearly set Fragile Storm off. Are you sure you don't simply idly wish to inflict two of the people you most dislike on one another in the hopes that they will make each other miserable?
The possibility had occurred to me, Fragile Storm agreed, with a grin, and her sister shook her head, leaning in, pressing her hands into Fragile Storm's, firmly pushing her sister back into her chair.
Fragile Storm smiled, shaking her head as her back fully contacted the back of her chair, and both twins opened their eyes simultaneously, grinning at one another. Fragile Storm took in a deep, slow breath; no matter how wretched she may have been feeling, her twin was able to lift her spirits, which was good, as she knew she'd need them.

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

Torrai Sormimi Risot-Soni, whose spoken name was properly rendered as Opalstorm, was not having a good day, but it was, she sensed, going to get better before too much time had passed. She could be patient when she needed to be.
The vessel, Swiftwind, had lifted off about 2,000 solon ago; a less perceptive person would not have detected the subtle sounds echoing through the ship indicating the raising of the gantry the humans had the vessel resting on, or the sound as the ship's thrusters transitioned to her main drives. But Opalstorm did. A vessel's crew should be sensitive to the tiniest clues to a change in status, after all. She estimated the time the scout would take to match orbits and dock with Retribution as being not much longer, so she sat up from the thin cot provided for prisoners, stretching and working her neck. Her muscles were stiff; just another indignity suffered at the hands of "Captain" Alexander Jardin.
That, at least, was a topic that Commodore Fragile Storm knew quite a lot about, she understood, not that she was expecting any sympathy. She had erred, greatly. She was going to be disciplined when she returned, she knew that. It was inevitable.

After all, she had been sent on a fact-finding mission to evaluate Jardin's ship. She had overstepped her remit in attempting to correct the situation immediately in her zeal to enforce proper discipline. In doing so, she had caused herself to be arrested by a crew which was wildly out of line, through what she was now convinced was no fault of their own. In doing so, she had endangered herself needlessly, and worse, endangered her mission.
Still, disciplined or not, even Fragile Storm would be unable to ignore the implications of this. It would have to be obvious that the crew of Swiftwind had been somehow corrupted. They would need to be relieved and retrained.

She needed only to be patient. So she stood up, stretching herself fully, tiny paroxysmal shudders running through her as she stretched, and relaxed, then bent to the task of dressing. She had removed her armored uniform and was wearing only her skintight undersuit to sleep in, a fact which she rectified with slow, deliberate grace. After she pulled her boots back on, she folded the cot over on itself again, and sat down to wait.

She would endure; she had to endure. It mattered little how onerous the indignities she was subjected to, for they were temporary. As she sat on the cot, she felt, rather than heard, the slight sound through the vessel that was indicative of docking.
Make that very temporary. She already saw in her mind how this would go. Jardin would have her marched to the airlock and marched aboard Retribution, smugly expecting to hand her over. Most likely the party receiving her would include Captain Fragile Spear personally. She would be handed over, Fragile Spear would order her restraints - assuming Jardin saw fit to have her restrained again - removed, and would order her to report to her office for debriefing. Then she would inform "Captain" Jardin that he was relieved of "duty" effective immediately.

All she would have to do would be to remain in earshot long enough to hear it; that would be highly satisfactory to her. Of course, she would be chastised most harshly once Fragile Spear returned to her office, there was no getting away from that. In this instance, she was the underling who had badly erred. Her only defense was that unlike the errors of her own subordinates which she had to constantly be vigilant for, born of malice or laziness, her own error had been born of a zealous desire to perform her duties. It was unlikely to bring more than a quantum of leniency, but it remained the case, and when an explanation was demanded, it was what she would provide in her own defense.

"Attention!" A woman's voice erupted from the panel by the door. "Remain back from the door; it is being opened." Opalstorm was at the far end of the admittedly tiny cell from the door, and sitting down, so she had little to worry about in the form of accidentally startling the guard. She rose again to her feet, as the door opened, sliding into the wall, the brighter lights from the bluish off-white corridor outside seeming harsh after a night in the yellow-orangeish brig cell, and her eyes stung slightly as they acclimated, which they did rapidly.

There were clearly no chances being taken; the red-maned figure of the human's Unsheathed bodyguard was in the lead. Anything Opalstorm attempted to do telekinetically, she could crush with raw overpowering might, and then do the same to Opalstorm herself. Flanking her were two Soroin crew wearing combat helmets with their duty uniforms. The Unsheathed had her pistol strapped to her hip, and the two helmeted Soroin were wearing pistols on their hips with carbines slung over their chests, hands around the weapon's grips, trigger fingers extended along the sides of the weapons. No respect there at all; no indication that they felt this was merely a formality that must by necessity be observed, as their whole hands resting alongside the weapons would indicate; both of them were ready to draw a bead and open fire on a moment's notice.

This was just insulting. They were treating her like an actual prisoner, a real mutineer, someone dangerous who could attack suddenly and without warning at any moment. At random, she locked eyes with the one on the left; she was as young as the majority of the youths on Jardin's ships, with brilliantly bright silvery eyes and matching hair, and flicked her eyes down the girl's body and back up.
Sloppy, she thought; the girl's sidearm holster was affixed not with laser-straight precision vertically on her left thigh, where it should be, but to her right hip of all places, on the front of her pelvis, angled upwards across her body. Where her pistol should have been was sheathed a long knife. Opalstorm had to work hard to fight the instinct to mentally lay into the girl for the failing to conform to the standards laid out for an armed crewmember, as she locked eyes with the silver-haired girl. To her disgust, she found the youth's mind hardened against hers; not in a mood to receive anything Opalstorm sent, let alone in any way, shape, or form prepared to concede that she might be acting improperly.

Her eyes were drawn inexorably back to the brilliant green eyes of the human's bodyguard. "Come out slowly," she said, backing away from the door, as did the two guards with her. With nothing else to be done, Opalstorm complied, making a show of moving slowly, taking one step only every two beats of her heart. She had been hoping to annoy the Unsheathed with the act of malicious compliance, but instead found herself faced with only patience as she exited the cell. The brig officer was wearing full combat armor and had a carbine on her person, also ready to be used on a moment's notice, Opalstorm saw, and the Unsheathed pointed her towards the fore of the vessel.
"Proceed to the airlock without any sudden moves," she was instructed, and Opalstorm turned to comply. After she was certain that the Unsheathed behind her had more than the required patience to walk her to the airlock at the intentionally slow pace Opalstorm first adopted, her own impatience overcame her desire to resist complying with orders being given by those in thrall to the alien, and she accelerated to a normal slow walk.

Marched to the front of the ship, Opalstorm noted that all of the crew appeared to be armed; most were wearing sidearms, but some had carbines or full-length rifles. The ones with long arms, it seemed, had been posted; at every intersection, at the doors to every sensitive area. All of them were standing straight, rigid-backed, and all of them with long arms slung; either over their backs or under their arms, but the moment she entered the compartment, they all came to the front, and Opalstorm saw with a sinking feeling that they each readied their weapon before assuming their ready posture. The crew with pistols seemed to be those not posted as sentries, and they hurried to clear out of the way as her guards marched her forward.

She had berated this crew for what she perceived as an inexcusable breakdown of discipline. Now each and every one of them was armed, and if any one of them hated her more than they enjoyed their lives, she doubted her guards would be able to stop them from assassinating her. She felt a tremble of fear run through her, from deep in her belly to her chest, and instinctively squared her shoulders, straightening up, hardening her mind. If the pink alien thought to intimidate her, it was working, but she wasn't going to give him the satisfaction of seeing it. She hoped.

She passed one compartment to the next. The posted sentries didn't move, didn't flinch, as she was marched past them, but two of the pistol-armed crew, with a maintenance drone in tow, who appeared to be going past on their business, plastered themselves to the wall to make space for her to move. Both of them snapped rigidly straight, and made that same assuredly-obscene gesture that had so enraged her previously, and which she now fought against lashing at them for; not directed at her. It was directed at the Unsheathed warrior behind her, and she caught the two sending a telepathic greeting - a short and simple acknowledgment of the Teidar's rank, and the Teidar telling them to be at ease, which seemed to be the trigger for them to relax their arms.

They were mocking her, she knew it. That absurd gesture was clearly some kind of alien obscenity, meant to convey contempt. Right? It had to be. Doubt threatened to creep into mind, and she quashed it. It couldn't be anything else.
Passing through to the corridor with the airlock, she found herself facing the source of her indignities himself, at the far end of the corridor. He was not visibly armed; in fact, he was the only one who was not visibly armed. The human adjutant he had - the one who looked far more the warrior than he did - was armed, with a sidearm of a type she was unfamiliar with, black and silvery metal of some sort, worn in a holster attached to her belt. She felt incensed; he wasn't even a warrior, too cowardly or weak despite his stature to bear an arm himself, requiring the real warriors to do it for him?! By what right, imaginary certainly, did he dare to presume to give orders? Even the female of his race was clearly his better, with a warrior's hair color and a weapon - odd but a weapon - on her person. Outrage threatened to consume her as she saw the human, his arms crossed, daring to meet her eyes like an equal, let alone a superior with a stance like that?

She was jogged into motion again by a sharp telekinetic shove to the back, pushing her and forcing her to move to retain her balance. "Walk, or be carried like a sack of cargo" the Unsheathed behind her said. She snarled, but what choice did she have? The way said it implied the sort of cargo that was not handled with particular care; thus, Opalstorm walked. From the corridor behind the human, his Mizol ataché emerged, taking up the other flank - even she was armed, Opalstorm saw, and she was carrying a bag. The implications of that were unclear.

She walked to the airlock, which was flanked by two guards in full combat armor, with rifles at the ready, pistols holstered and knives worn opposite their pistols in sheathes. She almost suspected they were intentionally tempting her to make a grab for a weapon so they'd have an excuse to shoot her. She wouldn't give them the satisfaction. Coldly, she turned to the airlock door, waiting for it to open, which it did presently.

Into the airlock she was ushered, followed by the Unsheathed warrior. The two guards moved ahead of her, to the hull-facing corners of the airlock, watching her cautiously, while the "Captain' and his two flanks slipped in last.
At least I'm not being spaced, she thought to herself. The airlock cycled, to a boarding gantry extended from hull of a much larger vessel. The gantry's windows polarized in the harsh, unfiltered light from the star, but only enough to reduce the incoming visible radiation to tolerable levels, affording her a good view of the vessel ahead as she was marched to it. The cycle repeated at the far end of the extensible boarding gantry, and Opalstorm found herself again in an airlock, waiting for it to cycle.

She felt, not relief, but a cold satisfaction. She knew she would be punished later, but she would at least see the satisfaction of fulminating indignation on the human's face when he was told in no uncertain words - words, hah! - that he had no right nor authority to order her arrest. It would be well worth the chastisement she was due for.

The airlock opened, and Opalstorm walked confidently in, sensing more than seeing the human and his addled flunkies following her. She took a deep breath of the sweet scent of Retribution, of her beautiful vessel, but confusion began to hit her almost immediately. She had expected to see Fragile Spear at the least, if not Fragile Storm. Instead, all she saw was a squad of helmeted, armed Soroin being led by a Teidar Sezon - a particularly tall, strong specimen of one in fact, larger even than the Pallan behind her, with bluish-silvery hair, long and straight at the back and raised up in a high widow's peak. Behind them lurked, to Opalstorm's surprise, New Moon, waiting and observing.

A security squad? That wasn't right -
Secure the prisoner! The Teidar Sent loudly, and Opalstorm's eyes went wide. She heard, behind her, the Mizol quietly informing the two humans of the directed order, and looked around in shock; the two guards from Swiftwind had taken up positions on either side of the airlock, shifting their carbines to rest against their left shoulders, while Jardin's Unsheathed hanger-on stood menacingly behind her, and the two humans and the Mizol had stepped out to the left. She looked back to the front as one of the Soroin slung her carbine behind her back and approached her with a pair of restraints.

Shock and disbelief ran through Opalstorm; she looked around wildly; no senior officers were in sight. She was the highest-ranking officer in sight - how was this happening? She shook her head. Are you deficient or something? This ape has clearly -
Her mental tirade at the Teidar Sezon was cut off in a burst of overwhelming psychic noise directed at her by the Sezon, and Opalstorm cringed, her eyes seizing shut for a moment until she erected a defensive lotai. "The prisoner will remain silent until addressed," the Teidar snapped at her, and Opalstorm barely managed to avoid snarling, though her teeth were gritted and her eyes, she was certain, were displaying her rage at being mistreated in such an offensive manner, let alone by an officer who was her junior.

The Soroin walked back behind her, and Opalstorm did snarl as a pair of restraints were fitted to her hands. The human's Mizol stepped forward as the Soroin roughly pushed her away, handing over the bag. "The prisoner's confiscated effects," she explained, and one of the other security Soroin took the bag, nodding.
The Teidar from Retribution stepped forward, addressing Jardin. "What has the prisoner done which caused her to be arrested," she asked, and the human nodded.
"She boarded my vessel, and immediately began a campaign of psychic harassment and abuse towards my crew for perceived failings and in the mistaken belief my crew was mocking her. When I confronted her about this outrageous behavior, I offered her the opportunity to lay out her grievances before me, in private. Instead, she chose to challenge my authority to command. I ordered her to depart, and she refused, stating that she would have had me shot if she had the opportunity. I offered her one final chance to depart, to which her reply was, in full, 'make me.' At this point, I ordered my crew to arrest her at gunpoint and imprison her."

"Understood," the Teidar said, quietly and clipped. She looked back to the Soroin. "Remand the prisoner to the brig," she said, and the Soroin at her her back shoved Opalstorm forward, as the armed escort pushed her forward.
Opalstorm was shocked; so shocked she could do nothing but comply. She held out the brief hope that this was a show being put on for the human's benefit, but that hope only lasted half-way to the brig, with the restraints still on her wrists. In a few more minutes' time, she found herself ordered at gunpoint to disrobe entirely, and was provided with a plain bodysuit with no markings indicative of her rank or authority, and found herself in the interior of yet another brig cell.

All she could think was what just happened!? There was no answer.

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

The guards all but frogmarched Opalstorm out, and Alexander felt a twinge of sympathy. She had been a megabitch; had really pushed him to the kind of hard-line disciplinary measures that he hadn't had to take on the entire journey to Earth, in fact... But still, he was already starting to regret it. He closed his eyes, and sighed, then the Unsheathed who had led the security detachment said, bluntly, "Captain Jardin, Fragile Storm wishes to see you in her office."

He opened his eyes, looking at her. Man, anime hair is really popular among Loroi. I'd better never take any of them to Japan, they'd give all the teenaged boys heart attacks. He nodded. "Thank you, Sezon. We know the way." With a nod, the woman turned smartly on her heel and walked after the retreating detachment. The Listel who had been hovering behind them - New Moon, he recognized - turned too, with a longer, slower nod, an expression that looked like gratitude on her face, and withdrew as well.

"Why was New Moon here," he asked, and Tempo smiled. "She was present to witness and memorize the allegations you made."
"Ah." Alex nodded, and Kelly frowned.
"Why not just, you know... Use a camera? Ooooh, because normally, they'd be being made telepathically, right."
Tempo smiled at her, nodding, and Alex rolled her shoulders. "Well, let's see what Fragile Storm wants. Probably to formally relieve me of command."

"Awh. Just when I was starting to get used to the ship," Kelly said with a bit of a pout, causing Alex, Tempo and Fireblade all to chuckle. Alex started forward, confident he could find his way to the bridge. He made no faltering turns despite Retribution being fairly newer to him than Glory had been, and soon they were passing the holotank; it had showed an image of Sunfall in uniform, but shifted as they approached, being replaced with a vessel rather like three triangles in formation, joined by an angular body; large-looking and beautiful, decorated with gilded trim, Kelly whistled as she passed it. "Damn, that's as beautiful as she is. I'm guessing that was her ship?"
Alexander nodded, and Tempo spoke up. "The Eye of Heaven," she said. "At the time of the Semoset offensive, she was one of our largest and most powerful vessels. No expense was spared; she was only ten percent slower than Tempest, had armor over twice as thick and heavier shields. She carried a Wave-Loom device, more blasters than a battleship, and ordnance launchers that could load and fire AMMs, torpedoes and KKVs."
"It was a flawed vessel, however beautiful and powerful," Fireblade opined, and Alex looked over to her, raising an eyebrow. Fireblade paused, and pointed at the vessel's hull. "No point-defense cannons. Eye of Heaven was entirely dependent on her escorts, her multi-missile launchers and her carried flight of starfighters - only eight in number, potentially as many as twelve if all her standard shuttles were sacrificed for light fighters - for point defense. She also lacks pulse cannons entirely, despite postdating their invention. Her sole long-range options are her torpedoes and the Wave-Loom device. By way of comparison, Skymaster, although years older than Eye of Heaven and predating the invention of pulse cannons and the Wave-Loom, had twenty laser autocannon turrets, heavier armor and far heavier shields."
"They were both destroyed; around the same time, even" Alex pointed out, and Fireblade nodded.

"This is true, but Skymaster was destroyed when Eighth Dawn chose to order her personal squadron to hold the line at Tinza against overwhelming force. No particularly exploitable flaw existed in her design, she was simply overwhelmed by far more shells than even her incredible defenses could repulse. They focused fire on Skymaster exclusively, knowing that the Emperor was aboard, sacrificing many hundreds of times Skymaster's mass and uncountable shells to destroy the vessel. Eye of Heaven's flaws, by comparison, were fatal; she was overwhelmed by shell torpedoes in the middle of an all-out retreat, when her escort squadron became scattered."

Ensign Kelly nodded, and Alex nodded forward, to the doors. "I'd better not keep Fragile Storm waiting. You guys can stay here and debate the finer points of shipbuilding, if you like," he suggested with a smile, getting a grin from his cohort as he started forward, to the doors. They opened at his approach, onto the command deck of Retribution. It was somewhat smaller than that of the considerably-larger Tempest, but it still offered a hell of a view, and he grinned as he looked to the right; Earth was visible, dominating the screen, with ECS Victory and ECS America easily as close to Retribution as her sister ship was, and the rest of the fleet the Loroi had come with.

It occurred to him, then, that the Loroi were demonstrating an incredible amount of trust. At this range, the heavy mass drivers on America and the Mjolnir Cannon on Victory would tear the Loroi vessels apart in one salvo, screens or no screens. He also knew that they had to know this. And yet, there they were. I guess we really are officially allies now, he though, with a softly-suffusing sense of satisfaction. He saw Fragile Spear was floating around the command deck, much like Stillstorm did aboard Tempest, and she turned, approaching him.
"Captain Jardin, welcome back aboard," she said with a nod, which he returned.
"Captain Fragile Spear, thank you. I wish the circumstances were more pleasant."
"Indeed, so do I, but often life is such," Fragile Spear conceded. "The Commodore wishes to see you immediately. Your adjutants may make use of the observation area," she said, nodding her head to the couches at the aft of the bridge, "assuming they ever get done admiring the holo-sculpture of Eye of Heaven."

So there is a camera out there. Jardin nodded at her, and turned to the door to Fragile Storm's office, heading through it. Within stood Commodore Fragile Storm, her back to the door, examining a viewscreen that looked much like a window, but it was showing the view out of the port side of the vessel; at the bottom was Swiftwind, connected to Retribution by the gantry and docking arms that were holding her in place.

"Commodore," he said, walking to the middle of the room, standing stiffly at attention, though not saluting.
She turned around, looking at him, her eyes piercing. "Captain Jardin," she said, turning and walking towards him. "Explain to me why one of the junior command officers in my fleet is now in my brig instead of discharging her duties."

"Yes sir," he said, smartly, and outlined the events surrounding Opalstorm's incarceration, yet again. Fragile Storm listened intently, without interruption, and he summarized, "And so I ordered the distribution of small arms and sentries posted at all junctions and sensitive areas aboard, for her transfer to Retribution."
"I see," Fragile Storm said, peering into his eyes. "Did you think there was a real possibility she would lash out?"

"I couldn't discount it, given the utter contempt she had displayed for my crew and myself," Alex said. "So I decided to send a message, a very clear and unambiguous one, by allowing her to walk out without restraints."
Fragile Storm raised her eyebrow again. "Oh? And what message, exactly, was that meant to convey?"
"That her actions were her own - and that any consequences arising from those actions, were also hers."
"I see," the green-haired Unsheathed-cum-Commodore said. "And was that the only message you intended to convey?"

"No," he replied, with a grin. "One of her chief complaints about my crew was that discipline was nonexistent. Perhaps it was somewhat petty of me," he admitted with a slight grin, "But I felt like demonstrating exactly how incorrect she was by putting on a perfect demonstration of discipline and martial pride. The crew rose to the challenge, and put on as fine a display of martial pride as I've seen anywhere, in human space or in the Union."
Fragile Storm was silent for a few moments, considering. Then she leaned in, close. Alex swallowed as she peered into his eyes from very close away, suddenly consciously aware of just how attractive - and deadly - the Commodore was; rather the same traits he saw in Fireblade. He inhaled, reflexively, scenting her from mere inches away; her perfume, her shampoo, the natural sea-breeze scent of a Loroi woman - and wine?
Hooooly shit, is she drunk? No, not nearly, or I'd have smelled it before now. He stared into her eyes, ignoring the worried churning in his guts and standing stiffly at attention, as she said, "Show me."

Show her - oh, she wants to do an inspection herself? Okay. Alex nodded. "Yes ma'am," he said, as she leaned back, and gestured for him to lead on.
Turning on his heel smartly, he walked out to the bridge. Fragile Spear was leaning over the XO's chair, looking at her console as they had a silent, psychic conversation, but she turned on her heel to follow him and her twin. Past the doors to the bridge, he saw his friends, apparently discussing history. Tempo was speaking, "- And so, in the year 1111 SYU - that is, 1632 C.E. by human reckoning - the first Emperor of the Loroi Union, Loremark, died a peaceful death of old age. She was four-hundred fifty nine Earth years at the time, which is an old age for us to reach. Her reign lasted three-hundred and nine Earth years. It was a glorious reign, during which the Loroi Union prospered."
Kelly shook her head, snorting. "It saw an entire sapient species almost wiped out and rendered a non-space-faring civilization. Maybe that meets your definition of glory, but I'm not sure I can agree."

"Andrew Jackson, Kelly," Jardin said, as he approached the holotank - upon it, Sunfall was again displayed in glorious nudity. "He was an asshole who ignored the treaties the United States signed with Native American tribes and began a campaign of having them forcibly relocated to make their land available to use. Without him, the American Civil War probably would have happened thirty years earlier than it did, and may not have ended in a Union victory and we wouldn't be here today. Some of the stuff he did might not have been nice, but in hindsight, it may well have been necessary."

The redhead looked up at him, her eyes going slightly wide in surprise as she caught sight of Fragile Storm and Fragile Spear at his flanks, and he saw that she caught the subtext; don't question Loremark too stringently in front of the brass. She took in a deep breath, held it for a moment, and nodded. "I suppose you're right, when you put it that way."
Fragile Storm raised an eyebrow. "You allow your subordinates to question your historical heroes," she asked, and he turned back to her, placing his hands on the holo-tank behind him, and nodded.

"Yes, Fragile Storm, we do. The freedom of speech - to question the government openly and without fear of suppression or retaliation, to assemble, and to demand redress of grievances - is of paramount importance to our culture, practically to the level of sacredness. We have fought wars to assert it in times when it is threatened; it is as important to us as warrior honor is to the Loroi."

Fragile Storm snorted, and shook her head. "But how do your leaders enforce order, if their every decision is subject to questioning from any and all?" Alex shrugged.
"Order isn't really how we operate. The Union is a heavily centralized society, with power concentrated in the person of the Emperor, and authority coming therefrom. By contrast, in most Terran societies, authority flows partly or wholly from the people, and those who govern do so with remit from, and the consent of, the governed; and yes, in most such societies, there exists the possibility for that consent to be revoked should the public feel the government is inadequately performing; either at the next scheduled election time, or, in extreme circumstances, immediately by some form of vote of no confidence."

Alex swallowed. He was always worried when he was trying to talk brass tacks about human societies with a Loroi higher-up. Emperor Greywind had found his explanations amusing, and decided that human politics must be entertaining to behold. Fragile Storm seemed to digest this, and she shrugged. "Well, it sounds perfectly barbaric and unworkable to me, but clearly it is working for your people. As long as it continues to work for you as allies of the Union, it isn't our place to criticize... But since your people seem to feel free to criticize us, I believe I shall reserve unto myself the right to criticize in turn."
Alex nodded; that seemed perfectly fair. "Of course, Fragile Storm. As I said, we hold the freedom of speech to be paramount; even when the person speaking is saying something we don't like to hear said, or agree with."

Fragile Storm smirked at him. "How curious. You would not silence me, even if you could, when I say that a ruler ought to be able to silence any critics who are proving disruptive to the social fabric?"
Alexander shook his head. "Absolutely not. I might attempt to argue my position; to convince you that my point is right, just as you might argue for your position. But I would not silence you; and I would find it an outrage akin to an assault on my person if you attempted to silence me; or if another party attempted to silence you."

Her eyebrow raised, and the commodore leaned in. "Really? You consider an attempt to silence you from speaking your opinion as outrageous as a physical assault?"
"He understates, Commodore," Fireblade interrupted. "In my experience, he reacts more poorly to an attempt to silence someone from speaking their mind than he does to physical assault. From what admittedly little I have seen of other humans, this seems to be not a peculiarity of Captain Jardin himself, but a common factor among those who share his culture."

Fragile Storm frowned, her eyebrow raised, as she quizzically looked at Jardin, leaning close again. He gulped, as again the scent of perfume, shampoo, wine and Loroi reached his nose, and she tilted her head from side to side, examining him. "What a curious thing," she murmured, "to be willing to risk harm to protect your ability to speak your mind. What an even more curious thing, to be unwilling to silence those who oppose your views. It seems given to fractiousness and chaos."

"It is," Alex conceded. "Human society can be likened to directed chaos; and we like it that way, and historically resist any efforts to change it, from within or without." Unspoken was the caution that humankind would react extremely negatively to any attempts by the Loroi to impose their idea of order. Fragile Storm remained close, moving her head parallax to his, peering down one side of his face, then moving back to the other; as he was reaching a state of the uncomfortable beginnings of nervous arousal, she finally leaned back.

"Well, if that is the way humanity will be, so be it," she said, with a shrug. "The Hierarchy represent an existential threat not only to our lives, but unquestionably to our minds and opinions. Surely your people will band together with us in the face of such adversity, if you consider the right to dissent to be so important."
"We will; we have," Jardin promised. "The Loroi Union will be subjected to incredibly harsh criticism from human sources, and our leaders will be both unable and unwilling to prevent this. But at the end of the day, the Loroi are clearly akin to us; the Hierarchy want to consume us, and you. We will not tolerate this, and will act to prevent it."

"So be it," Fragile Storm murmured. "Anyway," she said, and he nodded, turning back to his friends.
"Kelly, Fireblade, Tempo; on me. Nobody calls the ship. The Commodore has requested and required a personal inspection. Fireblade, ensure that all crew we pass do not alert anyone telepathically. I want to see how they handle suddenly finding the Commodore aboard."

The three of them fell in with a synchronous "Yes sir," and Alex smiled in satisfaction as he walked around the holotank, leading the group back through Retribution towards the docking arm clamped onto Swiftwind. Kelly had been with him less than two days, and she already seemed to be meshing with his existing friends. To the point of being able to debate with Tempo without angering her, even.


Last edited by ShadowDragon8685 on Mon Jul 11, 2016 7:59 am, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Jul 11, 2016 1:52 am
Profile

Joined: Wed May 20, 2015 2:14 am
Posts: 459
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
Krulle: Funny, as usual. :)

Thank you. It's been my first, though...
Pity,the [spoiler=xyz] tab ddoes not work on this forum....

_________________
Vote for Outsider on TWC: Image


Mon Jul 11, 2016 2:03 am
Profile

Joined: Wed May 20, 2015 2:14 am
Posts: 459
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Spoiler: show
Still, even with an acceleration minimum on the vessels she could use, she felt they could have at least afforded her a Swift Vanguard-class Battlecruiser. A Vortex would have been even more preferable, but the only way they were getting Stillstorm off the bridge of Tempest was if she were dead, or upgrading to a Sector Command Ship.
I am not certain she would not reclassify Tempest as her Sector Command Ship if she were promoted, Fragile Storm's twin sent to her. The duo were sitting in Fragile Storm's office, not at her desk but at a small circular table in the middle, the remains of a meal shared together having been cleaned away, their hands clasped tightly.
Fragile Storm could not help but smile as her twin picked up on her thoughts and joked with her about them, mirth filling her. I fear you are correct, sister; only an upgrade to an Imperial flag vessel is certain to get her off that ship.

[...]

Her sister shook with silent mirth, barely restraining herself from a bout of giggling, which nearly set Fragile Storm off. Are you sure you don't simply idly wish to inflict two of the people you most dislike on one another in the hopes that they will make each other miserable?
The possibility had occurred to me, Fragile Storm agreed, with a grin, and her sisters hooksister shook her head, leaning in, pressing her hands into Fragile Storm's, firmly pushing her sister back into her chair.
Fragile Storm smiled, shaking her head as her back fully contacted the back of her chair, and both twins opened their eyes simultaneously, grinning at one another. Fragile Storm took in a deep, slow breath; no matter how wretched she may have been feeling, her twin was able to lift her spirits, which was good, as she knew she'd need them.

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

[...]

After all, she had been sent on a fact-finding mission to evaluate Jardin's ship. She had overstepped her remit in attempting to correct the situation immediately in her zeal to enforce proper discipline. In doing so, she had caused herself to be arrested by a crew which was wildly out of line, through what she was now convinced was no fault of their own. In doing so, she had endangered herself needlessly, and worse, endangered her mission.
Still, disciplined or not, even Fragile Storm would be unable to ignore the implications of this. It would would have to be obvious that the crew of Swiftwind had been somehow corrupted. They would need to be relieved and retrained.

[...]

There were clearly no chances being taken; the red-maned figure of the human's Unsheathed bodyguard was in the lead. Anything Opalstorm attempted to do telekinetically, she could crush with raw overpowering might, and then do the same to Opalstorm herself. Flanking her were two Soroin crew wearing combat helmets with their duty uniforms. The Unsheathed had her pistol strapped to her hip, and the two helmeted Soroin were wearing pistols on their hips with carbines slung over their chests, hands around the weapon's grips, trigger fingers extended along the sides of the weapons. No respect there at all; no indication that they felt this was merely a formality that must be necessity be observed, as their whole hands resting alongside the weapons would indicate; both of them were ready to draw a bead and open fire on a moment's notice.
I would use a different formulation, e.g. "necessary formality that must be observed", or "formality that must necessarily be observed". Your call to leave it as is or amend if desired.

[...]

She was jogged into motion again by a sharp telekinetic shove to the back, pushing her and forcing her to move to retain her balance. "Walk, or be carried like a sack of cargo" the Unsheathed behind her said. She snarled, but what choice did she have? The way said it implied the sort of cargo that was not handled with particular care; thus, Opalstorm walked. From the corridor behind the human, his Mizol atacheattaché emerged, taking up the other flank - even she was armed, Opalstorm saw, and she was carrying a bag. The implications of that were unclear.
If you do not want to use the accent, you can write attache, but it is with a double t.

[...]

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

[...]

Ensign Kelly nodded, and Alex nodded forward, to the doors. "I'd better not keep Fragile Storm waiting. You guys can stay here and debate the finer points of shipbuilding, if you like," he suggested with a smile, getting a grin from his cohort as he started forward, to the doors. They opened at his approach, onto the command deck of Retribution. It was somewhat smaller than that of the considerably-larger Tempest had been, but it still offered a hell of a view, and he grinned as he looked to the right; Earth was visible, dominating the screen, with ECS Victory and ECS America easily as close to Retribution as her sister ship was, and the rest of the fleet the Loroi had come with.
these words just seem superfluous

It occurred to him, then, that the Loroi were demonstrating an incredible amount of trust. At this range, the heavy mass drivers on America and the Mjolnir Cannon on Victory would tear the Loroi vessels apart in one salvo, screens or no screens. He also knew that they had to know this. And yet, there they were. I guess we really are officially allies now, he though, with a softly-suffusing sense of satisfaction. He saw Fragile Spear was floating around the command deck, much like Stillstorm did aboard Tempest,(Superfluous comma), and she turned, approaching him.
"Captain Jardin, welcome back aboard," she said with a nod, which he returned.
"Captain Fragile Spear, thank you. I wish the circumstances were more pleasant."
"Indeed, so do I, but often life is such," Fragile Spear conceded. "The Commodore wishes to see you immediately. Your adjutants may make use of the observation area," she said, nodding her head to the couches at the aft of the bridge, "assuming they ever get done admiring the holo-sculpture of Eye of Heaven."

[...]

Lovely, haven't read it fully yet. But I do understand Opalstorm's confusion and frustration.
Also, why has no-one told Alexander that it is customary to force any prisoners to remove armour and any rank insignia?
Logical too, as insignia are valuable when fleeing and meeting crew members that do now KNOW she is a prisoner....
Possibly Alexander did not want to go through this humiliation of her? Being ordered by a male to undress? (directly or indirectly)

Also, nice to see she sees the smaller Kelly as the real warrior, and even attaches the hair colour a warrior value.
She is a Loroi, and has much to learn. Very much. A transfer under Human command will be beneficial to the whole Loroi union, even if just to reinforce the understanding of how different the two races are. And if this works with Opalstorm, then the diplomats have an exemplary attestor of how important the understanding of the differences are. And that Humanity is not insulting the Loroi by using male diplomats or male attachés as liaisons. Those simply are the highest ranking and job-to-do trained individuals available. (And sending lower ranks, or less trained, just because they are female can also be seen as insulting!)

reason for edit: commented more on slight typing errors. How can I belittle this work by pointing out minor errors everyone can see the correct meaning of?

_________________
Vote for Outsider on TWC: Image


Last edited by Krulle on Mon Jul 11, 2016 5:05 am, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Jul 11, 2016 2:55 am
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2011 11:46 am
Posts: 939
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Dear gods... this stuff writes itself! :lol:

There is a almost inexhaustible resource of material to write about Human/Loroi interaction difficulties! So cute how Commodore Fragile Storm, knowingly or perhaps unknowingly is coming on to Alex! HA! Hilarity!

_________________
PbP:
[IC] Deep Strike 'Lt' Kamielle Lynn
[IC] Cydonia Rising/Tempest Sonnidezi Stormrage
[IC] Incursion Maiannon Golden Hair
[IC] TdSmR Athen Rourke

"...you can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is Kill him."


Mon Jul 11, 2016 3:01 am
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
Krulle wrote:
<Snip Edits>


I'll get to those when you're done (and probably after I've slept.)

Quote:
Lovely, haven't read it fully yet. But I do understand Opalstorm's confusion and frustration.
Also, why has no-one told Alexander that it is customary to force any prisoners to remove armour and any rank insignia?
Logical too, as insignia are valuable when fleeing and meeting crew members that do now KNOW she is a prisoner....
Possibly Alexander did not want to go through this humiliation of her? Being ordered by a male to undress? (directly or indirectly.)


Alex is aware that prisoners being afforded long-term accommodations in the brig are traditionally stripped of their armor (the Warrior's badge of office,) and even their Caste-colored skinsuits. He chose not to inflict this indignity upon her, just as he could have had her held in irons the entire time and marched to Retribution manacled hand and foot, but did not.

It was kind of an extra spiteful jab at her; "I am not going to insult your dignity or disregard your authority, although you have chosen to do both of these things to me and mine."

Plus, there was precisely one (1) Torrai (of any rank) aboard Swiftwind, and she made herself personally unwelcome to each and every member of the crew. None of them would fail to recognize her, even stark naked, let alone wearing the uniform she wore when she delivered such abuse to them. As for crew of the Retribution, well... He was confident she wouldn't do a legger, if only because Fireblade could reach out and pin her to the deck remotely.


Quote:
Also, nice to see she sees the smaller Kelly as the real warrior, and even attaches the hair colour a warrior value.
She is a Loroi, and has much to learn. Very much. A transfer under Human command will be beneficial to the whole Loroi union, even if just to reinforce the understanding of how different the two races are. And if this works with Opalstorm, then the diplomats have an exemplary attestor of how important the understanding of the differences are. And that Humanity is not insulting the Loroi by using male diplomats or male attachés as liaisons. Those simply are the highest ranking and job-to-do trained individuals available. (And sending lower ranks, or less trained, just because they are female can also be seen as insulting!)


Yep. It's very much a case of like mother, like daughter with this one. It probably doesn't help that shortly before being assigned to Retribution, Stillstorm and Opalstorm actually had a (rare) opportunity to meet, and Stillstorm spoke primarily unkindly of Jardin and humanity in general, because she is largely untrusting and greatly dislikes him.

Still, Stillstorm would never comport herself like this. Much as she dislikes Jardin, she wouldn't ever ignore his rank, or the very real martial accomplishments he's made.

sunphoenix wrote:
Dear gods... this stuff writes itself! :lol:

There is a almost inexhaustible resource of material to write about Human/Loroi interaction difficulties! So cute how Commodore Fragile Storm, knowingly or perhaps unknowingly is coming on to Alex! HA! Hilarity!


If only it wrote itself. Then I could just lean back and read it. :P

And yeaaah. She isn't exactly three sheets to the wind - more like one sheet to the wind. She had just enough wine to loosen her inhibitions slightly, not enough to really compromise her judgement. She doesn't really yet get how the wine affects her, because Loroi intoxicants don't appear to be liquid in form.


Mon Jul 11, 2016 3:07 am
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2011 11:46 am
Posts: 939
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
ShadowDragon8685 wrote:
If only it wrote itself. Then I could just lean back and read it. :P


Man...! Wouldn't THAT be convenient {soft jab at Arioch}! 8-)

_________________
PbP:
[IC] Deep Strike 'Lt' Kamielle Lynn
[IC] Cydonia Rising/Tempest Sonnidezi Stormrage
[IC] Incursion Maiannon Golden Hair
[IC] TdSmR Athen Rourke

"...you can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is Kill him."


Mon Jul 11, 2016 3:34 am
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 16, 2016 10:01 pm
Posts: 357
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
This was too big to fit in the last post - damn the character limit! Damn it! (Also it wasn't finished at the time.)

The soundtrack to this bit:
Spoiler: show


Now: I am going the feth to bed. :?
=================================

Back at the entry corridor, he lead the way to the airlock. His two armed and helmeted, but not combat-armored, Soroin remained stationed, their carbines slung behind their arms. As they approached, the one on the left - distinctive silver hair and eyes marked her as Mountain Mantle - called out "Capta - Mazeit!" She and the other armed Soroin with her, Rainfall - a pink-haired Maiad Loroi whom Jardin wished he had the resources to send to a technical school - snapped smartly to attention, raised their right arms in salute, facing Fragile Storm.

There was shock in their eyes at seeing the Commodore, he could tell, yet they still performed as trained. Alex glanced back, to see Fragile Storm, who was staring, somewhat nonplussed, and who leaned a little uncomfortably close to him, from behind, quietly inquiring, "I believe this is a human military salute, yes?"
Alex nodded, firmly. "It is."

"Explain the significance," she directed, and he nodded.
"Salutes are gestures of respect and acknowledgment, directed to a senior officer; the seniormost officer, if a party contains more than one," he explained.
"I see. We have a salute as well, but it is telepathic. You would not be able to perceive it; thus, you taught your crew to perform this human military salute which is obvious to all with eyes."
Alex nodded, trying to ignore the crawling feeling at the back of his neck as Fragile Storm spoke quietly. "And you taught them to perform this gesture towards other, higher-ranking Loroi as well," she asked.
Alex shook his head. "I did not need to. It came naturally, and spread from Swiftwind to the rest of the ships, as we juggled crew and met whilst docked."
"I see," Fragile Storm said, her voice surprisingly without the sharp edge he was used to hearing in it. "And are they expected to hold this gesture until I leave their presence?"

"They are to hold the gesture until you relieve them of the requirement to do so," Alex explained. "They are expecting you to return the salute, acknowledging their proper acknowledgment of your rank and authority, and to issue a command; they are currently standing at attention, with the arm raised in salute. 'Attention' would allow them to lower their arm. 'At ease' would allow them to relax their posture somewhat, and 'stand easy' allows them to relax almost fully. 'As you were' would dismiss all notice of your presence, and free them to return to whatever they were doing before you came to their notice; in this case, guarding the airlock. If you depart from sight, 'as you were' is assumed."
Fragile Storm shifted, but paused as her sister placed a hand on hers, and Alex saw her lips turn up in a smile, as Fragile Spear leaned around her sibling. "How strong is their discipline," she asked, and he turned his head to meet hers.
"Stronger than even I believed. They stood resolute in the face of the worst that Opalstorm threw at them, and I am told it was some of the worst psychic abuse that did not constitute the psychic equivalent of physical assault." He allowed himself to grin. "Fireblade drilled them well."

Fireblade grinned, her teeth pearlescently bright, and Fragile Spear nodded. "May I?"
Alex looked to Fragile Storm, who nodded, and so he nodded to Fragile Spear. Suddenly, the serene and placid Torrai Torret stepped towards the duo on the airlock, full of sudden fury, screaming... Something at Mountain Mantle. He couldn't quite make it out.
It took him offguard, and he felt a sudden burst of anger; this, he had not been expecting, and he took a deep breath, squaring his shoulders, but Fireblade and Tempo put their hands on his chest, holding him back less with force of strength as with caution. He looked into their eyes; each of them seemed to hold no outrage.
Damnit, I wish I could hear them, he thought, not for the first time. Mountain Mantle remained resolute, her eyes fixed on Fragile Storm, but Alex could see anger in her eyes. Fragile Spear stalked around her, to the left, then doubled back, to the right; opposite the airlock from Mountain Mantle, Rainfall - a pink-haired, somewhat darker-than-usual Maiad Loroi - had shock and surprise in her eyes, which were flicking excitedly from Mountain Mantle to Fragile Spear, to Jardin. I'm missing something, and I wish I knew what it was. The instincts in him were screaming at him to step in, to stop this, but Fireblade and Tempo were urging him caution and to let it play out. There were times to listen to instinct, and times to listen to his friends - this, he knew, was a time to listen to his friends... Even if it made him damned angry.

Fragile Spear stalked around Mountain Mantle in a semicircle, pacing; she reminded him of a great hunting cat, on the prowl; her face fierce, unlike any expression he had ever seen on her. She sporadically shouted at Mountain Mantle, and he could tell by the tension in her jaw, growing in her posture, that fury was building inside her. Jardin thought some of the shouts coming from Fragile Spear were Trade, or like it, but some of them were utterly incomprehensible. Finally, she seemed satisfied; just before Jardin was close to giving in and stepping in, she stepped back, smiling at him.
"She is disciplined," Fragile Spear said, with a grin. He turned towards her, sure that his anger was visible on his face.
"Would you care to explain that, Fragile Spear," he asked, gravely, and she nodded.
"Of course, Captain. This girl is Hos'te Blec. Her clan, like mine, supported Eighth Dawn in her uprising against Emperor Swiftsure, and for this, our peoples were awarded with the right to continue to exist, as opposed to being forcibly dissolved and relocated to far corners of the empire. Even so, our clans have ever been rivals, dating as far back as the Classical Menelos period. I exploited this fact to challenge her by her heritage, our shared rivalry, to issue ancient calls to conflict; insults and belittlements, of herself and her ancestors. Even now, you can see the outrage and fury on her face, crying out to battle me; yet despite this, she remains resolutely disciplined, locked in salute of my sister's authority."

Alex locked his eyes on Fragile Spear. Why the fuck would you think that was a good idea, he thought, but all he said was "I see."
"Indeed; look at her. Every instinct in her body is screaming at her to draw that blade on her hip and lunge at me. I fear I have rather insulted her so gravely only attacking me will salve her feelings."
Alex swallowed, and Fragile Storm raised her hand, saying, quietly, "Stand easy." Their posture shifted, but it became anything but easy; Rainfall's eyes were locked on Mountain Mantle with an expression approaching horror, and Mountain Mantle shifted her attention to Fragile Spear, violence writ on every muscle in her face. Alex swallowed again, and was about to order Mountain Mantle to go to quarters, when Fragile Spear rolled her shoulders, and stood back.
"Give her leave to act as she wishes, please, Captain," Fragile Spear said, and Alex blinked, looking at her, his expression clearly asking are you insane? The same murderous fury he had seen on many of his crew in the face of Opalstorm's aggression, but Fragile Spear and Storm nodded. He looked to Fireblade who nodded as well; Tempo looked dubious, and he swallowed, looking to Mountain Mantle, who met his eyes, her silver irises blazing with need.

If I do this, one of them is probably gonna wind up dead. If I don't, she's never going to respect me again. Against his better judgement, Alexander nodded, taking a deep breath. Fragile Spear was stepping back, opening up some distance, as Alex looked to Mountain Mantle. "Paset, you have leave to... Act as you will."

The explosion of intensity was almost immediate; she threw down her rifle, screaming something he could half-understand as an insult. Her next movement was to cross-draw her pistol holstered for just that motion, and Alex felt a moment of fear as she threw it, too, to the ground, screaming with even greater rage and anger.
Thirdly, she whipped her helmet from her head, flinging it to the deck with sufficient force he wanted the armory to inspect it before it was reissued, revealing her hair in the process; short, elaborately arranged into several braids hanging at the back, decorated with golden bands, and with Talon-like bangs hanging in front of her face.

Okay, if she's just gonna scream back, that's not so - GAH!
With a wordless scream of rage, an explosion of fury, her utility dagger seemed to materialize in her left hand, and she surged towards Fragile Spear. He instinctively tried to lunge for her, but felt Fireblade and Fragile Storm both telekinetically restraining him from the movement, almost constricting his chest as the short, young Loroi charged her elder.

So, this is how my first command ends; giving one of my crew permission to murder Fragile Storm's twin sister, he thought, as thinking was all he could do. Fragile Spear appeared to be caught off-guard, standing normally, and Mountain Mantle's blade described a brilliant, flashing arc towards Fragile Spear's throat. Alex's first thought was that if they could get her to the medics fast, they might be able to save her, but Fragile Spear leaned back with serpent-like speed, evading the blade's bite by what he could only imagine was the narrowest of margins, and lashed out with her right palm, at the youth's head.

It was on and Mountain Mantle craned her head to the left to evade the blow, launching an icepick stab with the knife at Fragile Spear's ribs. The blade and the Captain's armor chinked off one another, the blow forcing the Commodore's twin back a step, which the youth followed up with a heavy right cross.

It was fast - so fast, but Fragile Storm managed to intercept the haymaker with her left arm, catching the younger Loroi's forearm on her own, and she lunged forward in a headbutt. Alex thought it might well have worked, but he knew that Mountain Mantle was unquestionably his ship's unarmed and melee arms combat master, and she evaded by stepping back and retaliating with a viper-like lash of her boot, catching Fragile Spear in the sternum, forcing her back.
The fact that she had a knife worried Alex, but as angry as she had looked, he genuinely worried that if given the opportunity, Mountain Mantle would murder Fragile Spear with her bare hands, as she indeed appeared to be attempted to do so. He gritted his teeth, desperately trying to lunge in, to tackle one of them to the ground and shield her from the other with his body - and hope that the other liked him enough not to get to her quarry through him, but the psychokinetic force around him was far more than enough to immobilize him. His eyes glanced sideways at Kelly; she, too, was attempting to move, but was held securely by nothingness, her teeth gritted.

All he could do was watch, as Mountain Mantle launched slash and stab at Fragile Spear, who deftly intercepted and deflected each blow with her armored forearms. In a way it was elegant to behold, like watching a pair of kung fu masters, but the very real murderousness on Mountain Mantle's face made him fret, as the two attacked and parried, riposted and lunged, back and forth; a palm-strike from Mountain Mantle was intercepted by Fragile Spear's fist. The skin contact seemed electric, both of the duo gritting their teeth, but neither backing down; Alex, psychically blind as he was, could sense the battle of will that took place in that brief moment, each of them apparently attempting to overwhelm the other's mental defenses. Mountain Mantle broke the sanzai-lock with her dagger, making a broad slash at Fragile Spear's face, obliging her to pull away to protect herself.
The younger Loroi braced, and appeared to lunge, and Fragile Spear dropped low, attempting a leg sweep, but Mountain Mantle had feinted; she launched forward into a knee-strike, her legs clearing Fragile Spear's leg, her armored knee impacting the Captain on the face. She went flying back, to the deck. It took the youth a moment to recover from her awkward landing, and she caught Fragile Spear's boot in her armored codpiece for her trouble.

Alex winced, but the impact seemed only to knock his crewwoman back a step, and she leaped, lunging for Fragile Spear, who rolled out of the way. The blade skittered on the deck; someone less quick would have been caught offguard, but she turned the motion into a sweeping, icepick stab, again for the ribs, but the red-and-silver armored Torrai Torret's armor held, and the blow rolled her to her back. Again, Mountain Mantle pounced, and this time she caught an open-palmed blow to the armored sternum, but Fragile Spear was answered with the girl's fist, clenched around the blade of her dagger, slamming home in the tiny soft portion of armor just under her breasts.

The blow took the wind out of her, and Alex sucked in a hiss of breath as it was driven out of Fragile Spear; the youth quickly moved to pin, but Fragile Spear reached up; with both arms on Mountain Mantle's breasts (and what Alex suspected was a telekinetic blast), she shoved the girl back, off her; to her credit, the pinwheeling youth managed to gain her feet instead of being sent to her ass, as Fragile Spear twisted, spinning over and lunging, half-crouched, for the far wall, trying to grab hold of a railing, presumably for leverage to lunge fully upright.
She didn't get the chance; Mountain Mantle was atop her in a flash. Had the lunge actually sent the girl to her ass, it might have worked, but Mountain Mantle got her left arm under Fragile Spear's body, jerking her legs out from under her, using the blunt backside of the utility knife for a lever, right fist twisting in the elder Loroi's hair.

Fragile Spear went to the deck with a cry of alarm, and Alex felt a jolt run through him. Though she had provoked the fight, the feminine cry of alarm made his fists and teeth clench, his heart racing; the same primal urgency running through him as he felt any time Fireblade or one of his other friends wound up in a fight. He strained against the telekinetic restraint, his arms and legs burning, attempting in vain to somehow generate enough force to push himself forward, as an open-palmed strike from Mountain Mantle to the back of her shoulders sent Fragile Spear sprawled completely on the deck.

"You're out of practice, old woman," Mountain Mantle nearly spat, her fist twisting in Fragile Spear's hair, jerking back, and getting another cry of pain out of the Captain. Alex's heart beat now; afraid that instead of Fragile Spear, her twin was going to let loose and turn his crewwoman into a smear on the wall.
"Fireblade, let me go," he hissed, his jaw clenched so tightly it was all he could do. "Stop her," he hissed, hoping against hope that his Teidar friend would rip Mountain Mantle away from the Captain and thus, prevent her Unsheathed twin from destroying her, but to his horror, she did not.

All he could do was watch, in horror, as Mountain Mantle's blade flashed again. He cringed, expecting the blast of blue mist - if she was lucky, Fragile Storm would only remove the offending limb, and not turn her head into a smear on the wall, but neither happened. For a terrifying moment, he thought that she had stabbed Fragile Spear in the throat; then the clannish Captain's head snapped forward, and Mountain Mantle's body was pulled back, no longer connected; she came away with Fragile Spear's long mane of luxurious green hair, raggedly shorn clean by the flashing of her knife, twisted in her hand, and she stepped away, letting out a barbaric cry of rage and triumph. On the deck, Fragile Spear propped herself up on her elbow, breathing intensely hard and looking up at the youth clutching the majority of her hair, reaching back hesitantly and touching the edge where it had been cut off.

Fragile Spear blinked, a look of surprise on her face, followed by a snort of disbelief. "So I am," she said, as Mountain Mantle finished shouting, sucking in a heavy gasp of breath. Slowly, deliberately, she sheathed her knife, dropping Fragile Spear's dismembered tresses to the deck, and turned, stalking back to the airlock; heaving for breath, her lips twisted up in a triumphant, barbaric grin, she bent down; first putting her pistol back in its holster, then picking up her carbine and slinging it. Finally she picked up her helmet, which Alex noted appeared to be entirely undamaged despite the force with which she had flung it to the deck, and placed it back upon her head. Thus re-armored, she straightened up, breathing hard, calming slowly, and snapped into a rigid salute, toward the Commodore. At a gesture from Fragile Storm, she lowered her arm, but remained standing at attention.

Hoooooooly fuck, Alex thought as he felt the psychokinetic force restraining him vanish, leaving him, too, to heave for breath. That was at least in the top twenty most terrifying things I've witnessed, he thought, as he breathed hard. Fragile Spear had since rejoined her twin, who was disapprovingly looking at her cleft mane, and shook her head. "Was that entirely necessary," he demanded, quite roughly, of Fragile Spear.

"I'm afraid it was, and I apologize for any alarm it may have given," the Torrai Torret said, quietly. "I quite overdid it in attempting to see where her discipline would break. If we had not permitted her the outlet of attacking me, I fear it likely would have led to discipline problems in the future.

Mountain Mantle looked like she was slowly riding down from an adrenaline high, but to her credit was still holding together - barely. Alex rubbed his eyes. "Okay. Mountain Mantle," he said, and she snapped to again, refocusing on him, saluting smartly. He saluted in turn. "You are dismissed. Return to your quarters. Do not inform anyone of our presence here, or of what has just transpired. Inform the crew that the Captain gave orders that only one guard on this side of the airlock will suffice and that Rainfall remains at her post."

"Aye, Captain," the draining youth said, snapping off another salute, turning smartly on her heel, and walking into the airlock. It cycled behind her, and he looked at Fragile Spear, incredulously.
"Did you let her win," he asked, raising his eyebrow. Annoyance - though thankfully not anger - flashed in the older Loroi's eyes.
"I most certainly did not. I grossly underestimated her," she said, reaching up and touching the ragged edge of her hair, a deeply pained look coming to her face. "And I have paid for it. It would take years to regrow that much hair," she said, with an audibly pained tone to her voice, and Fragile Storm laughed.

"You may have it regrown in a day, you know" Fragile Storm said with a smile. Her twin looked at her, with something like mock horror on her face, and Fragile Storm smirked. "You can have yours regrown, or I'll have to shear mine off to match and we can both bear the shame of your failure to remain in practice. The choice is yours, sister." The horror on Fragile Spear's face turned very real, and her shoulders slumped for a moment.
"You can't mean that," Fragile Spear said, and Fragile Storm smirked, then stepped towards Rainfall.
"Your blade," she demanded. Swallowing, the pink-haired Maiad girl produced it. Fragile Storm took it, and reached behind herself, gripping her hair in her right hand, and drawing the blade across to her left.
"Stop! I'll do it," the Captain of Retribution said, urgently, and Fragile Storm looked back, grinning at her. Smoothly, she returned the blade to Rainfall, who tucked it away silently.

Alex let out a huff of breath, looking around. Fireblade looked amused; Tempo looked relieved, Kelly looked exhausted as he felt, clutching her hand over her chest. "You okay," he asked her, and she laughed.
"Am I okay? I thought I was just going to see someone murdered," she replied. "Like, with a fucking knife, right in front of me. No, I'm not okay," she said, letting out a laugh. "My heart is racing about a mile a minute. Is that kind of thing typical," she asked, looking up at him.

Alex shook his head, and Fireblade chuckled. "Not particularly," the mustard-armored warrior said. "But sufficiently egregious insults - such as those which I presume Fragile Spear delivered to Mountain Mantle, in some archaic form which was mutually intelligible to them - can so outrage a warrior's sense of honor that demanding redress by combat can feel her only recourse. In short, an honor duel. What I do not understand, however, is why she refrained from killing Fragile Spear, or at least maiming her far more severely."

Fragile Spear herself smiled. "That, too, goes back to the Third Emperor, Eighth Dawn. Our clans had ever been at one another's throats, and though we both threw our lot in with her, it was... Difficult to make our forces operate together in unison without severe casualties before even contact was made with the enemy. Eighth Dawn resolved the issue by formalizing a dueling ritual between our clans; we are, by ancient oath, forbidden from taking more than hair from one another in a deliberate act. Granted, had she struck home and true in the heat of the fight, this would not have been a violation, but she rather... Thoroughly established her superiority in getting the better of me, and per custom, well..." She glanced down at the pile of her discarded hair, reaching up and stroking again the ragged, uneven remains.

Alex facepalmed, and sighed. "You couldn't have told us she wasn't going to kill her," he asked Fragile Storm. "I was about in a panic there," he said, and the Commodore smirked at him.
"I know. I admit, I have had my doubts, but seeing genuine fear, shock, and urgency on your face in your desire to protect my sister was quite illuminating. Take a few moments to catch your breath," she suggested, and Alex facepalmed, nodding, breathing hard and bending forward, bracing his free hand on his knee.


Last edited by ShadowDragon8685 on Mon Jul 11, 2016 8:06 am, edited 4 times in total.



Mon Jul 11, 2016 3:49 am
Profile
User avatar

Joined: Mon Mar 21, 2011 11:46 am
Posts: 939
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Post Re: What to Do with Jardin (Fan Fic)
:lol:

Alexander Jardin - Alex facepalmed, and sighed. "You couldn't have told us she wasn't going to kill her?"

Commodore Fragile Storm - "I know. I admit, I have had my doubts, but seeing genuine fear, shock, and urgency on your face in your desire to protect my sister was quite illuminating. Take a few moments to catch your breath"

Alex - 'Dear God's.. You Loroi girls are going to be the Death of me.. either by Heart Attack or Heart Break!'

_________________
PbP:
[IC] Deep Strike 'Lt' Kamielle Lynn
[IC] Cydonia Rising/Tempest Sonnidezi Stormrage
[IC] Incursion Maiannon Golden Hair
[IC] TdSmR Athen Rourke

"...you can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is Kill him."


Last edited by sunphoenix on Mon Jul 11, 2016 5:03 am, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Jul 11, 2016 4:24 am
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic   [ 351 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15  Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by STSoftware for PTF.