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|Author:||White [ Sat May 25, 2019 3:31 pm ]|
|Post subject:||[Fanfiction] L-U-C-Y|
Chapter 1: You're not the good guy here.
You know, nobody’s perfect. Everybody has an off day and anyone's liable to make terrible mistakes.
Of this, everyone is to some extent aware, and none of them more so than K: Lieutenant Junior Grade aboard the Bellarmine, recognized member of the Scout Corps, TCA academy alumnus and Highschool graduate.
All of these titles, and many others we will not discuss at present, K received solely due to the aforementioned axiom.
As an explanation of this fact, consider that human society, to at least some extent, has morphed over time in order to better combat the individual imperfections of its constituents. Institutions increasingly diversified, and power diluted so that the fluctuating imperfections of the individual become averaged out across the bland performance of the whole.
Thus, the modern society of 2150 has, to every reasonable degree, ensured that those who rise through its ranks are made up solely of the competent and the lucky.
K himself was far from perfect, of course, but, in an astounding coincidence of fortune, every single person who, throughout his life, became responsible for even a single step of his soaring trajectory upwards, was, through some contrivance of circumstance and lack of personal judgement, sufficiently bound by the rules of such an imperfect universe to let him through. And, one must add, every single one of them, even those moved by their own personal imperfections to aid his ascension, was certain, or perhaps merely hopeful, that, even on consideration of his current status, he was unlikely to ever rise higher than the post they themselves had appointed him to!
This was the case for his coronation as pumpkin queen at the fall festival and, most recently, the cause of his most recent promotion, which came, carried with all the great gravity Tempo could muster:
“I do hereby declare you to be an ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary, and do establish you as head of the mission for ‘human kind.’
“Further, in consideration of your status as commander of a foreign vessel, I recognize you as military attache, with the right to be addressed as captain.”
Now, K, for all his imperfections, was at least self aware and, to a surprisingly great extent, perceptive.
It was thus he noted with simple accuracy that: Tempo was having an off day. In fact, he was certain Humanity was having an off day.
Hey, feel free to give some critiques on my writing, since I'm looking to improve.
|Author:||Werra [ Sat May 25, 2019 4:01 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: L-U-C-Y|
I take it the Wonderkid didn't make it and humanity now has to make do with whoever K is?
|Author:||White [ Sat May 25, 2019 4:20 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: L-U-C-Y|
Yeah, that just about covers the situation.
|Author:||SVlad [ Sun May 26, 2019 12:17 am ]|
|Post subject:||Re: L-U-C-Y|
So, commissar Lieutenant Kain, hero of the Imperium TCA?
|Author:||White [ Sun May 26, 2019 9:20 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: L-U-C-Y|
I decided this chapter is probably superfluous. It's still here if you want to read it, though.
|Author:||White [ Mon May 27, 2019 3:41 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: L-U-C-Y|
Chapter 2: Somehow, you'd find a way.
It bore thinking how delicate shipboard operations could be. The elements of the crew were much like the aspects of the rocket they served upon.
And, much like that famous doctrine of rocketry which, by now, had been drilled furiously into every cadet’s head, until it seemed hardened like concrete into their very minds, it was this very aspect which acted, in isolation from all other considerations of ability, to guide the selection of scouts and scout ships:
‘Every scout must adhere to the high standards of professionalism and fraternity expected of them in all their professional tasks and duties,’ the saying, or, rather, contractual obligation, went.
K, for his part, didn’t like the wording of the phrase, it exuded too much...superfluity. Despite his aesthetic obligations, however, K, at heart, agreed quite strongly with the intent of the matter. Ship board affairs, he felt, could quite strongly be compared to rocket engines. Everything was done for the lowest bidder, backed by fountains of government money and hampered by a continent’s worth of government bullshit. On top of it all, the error margins were smaller than their chances of survival, and a single misplaced screw could turn the entire affair into the interstellar equivalent of a mismanaged illegal fireworks stand.
This wasn’t to say that the Bellaramine was shoddily made, however; it was exploding for quite a different reason.
Another flash of plasma cut across the space before him, the streak burning itself into his retinas and blinding him to the obscured starlight surroundings.
Thankfully for him, his tumbling course brought him around just in time for his eyes to miss the subsequent explosion. K, being far away enough from the ship to completely escape the blastwave didn’t, beyond the subtle flash of reflected light playing off the surrounding dust clouds, hear or note any evidence of it until his veering tumbles brought him back to face the wreck.
Every attempt to face the ship, or to face anything in particular, were obscured by the frustratingly determined trajectories his bodies coursed through in his haphazard fall through space.
“Ek 2612, this is K-null 2211.”
“I repeat, this is K-null 2211.”
“Fuck,” K said as the continual silence answered his question, quickly scrambling afterwards to turn off the transmitting signal. He hoped, for a moment at first, that no one had heard that. But that, now seemingly childish, line of thought brought his mind unwillingly to darker avenues. No one would hear it the thought came, everyone who could was dead, and if they weren’t, he was going to die soon anyway.
Turning his eyes askance, he observed the oxygen meter. He had eight hours. He laughed, almost, at that realization, a giddy feeling rising up along the untenable tension which ran along his abdomen as his tumbling course moved to pull his head apart from his feet. Along with this, another force worked to pull him apart in subtler ways...would he wait here for all those empty hours, or would he just get it over with?
What was life worth if it is to end anyway? The question seemed to come, as if he’d been blind all his life not to have thought of it before...to have really considered it with all the earnestness such fundamental problem required and deserved.
The question was soon answered on his behalf.
A glint of metal, like a shooting star, and a sudden and powerful shock ran up the bone of his left arm, his left hand seeming to disappear in just that synchronized instant; this, he barely registered before the breath exploded from his lungs, sudden, howling suffocation blinking him to action as he flailed about to pointless effect, feeling lost in the hurricane of noise that screamed about him.
A flash of insight followed by the unthinking motion of instinct... and he took a shuddering breath. He seemed to hover stillly now, the universe was the one moving around him, and not he within it.
Looking down, he could see a stream of red mist swirling beautifully around him; following the trail, he found it guided him to the blood stained stump above his left wrist, which he’d at some point clamped shut with his right fist and from which streamed forth a soft hiss of leaking air and frozen blood particles.
An intense shiver rang through him, and a reactionary bloom of goosebumps ran across his body, as if it were only now that his body had noticed the cold.
The shiver lasted for some minutes, and he could feel the cold taking an ever deeper grip on him. His desiccated stump felt icy in its pain, as if it’s nerves had been frozen into inaction, and the continuous stream of escaping air whispered into his ears in the reverberating universe of sound that existed inside his suit.
Paradoxically, this event only seemed to clear his resolve, and K was soon moved to follow his sudden and new sense of purpose.
Gauging, once more, the oxygen levels, accounting for the leakage, he found he’d have about an hour remaining until…
He left that thought alone, mechanically moving his encumbered arms as he dialed in the appropriate frequencies.
“Mayday, Mayday, this is Lieutenant Junior Grade K of the Terran Federation. I am requesting assistance. My ship, the ECS-150 Bellarmine was destroyed at approximately 2:40 on July 14th, 58 days into our mission of contact, by an unknown enemy using a high energy beam weapon. We were attacked multiple times and, I believe, deliberately,”
K spoke with a mechanical tone, seeming to hear his own words as if they came from someone else. The fact that he was speaking in Trade only strengthened the illusion.
As he spoke on the open frequency, he also took the liberty of setting up his recorder. Later, perhaps, he would record a formal report in English, but right now the sudden death which space implied pushed cause for efficiency.
All through his mind, plans and tasks and responsibilities whirred. He had too much to do and too little time to do it in. Quickly, the idea of using his med kit to patch his arm was considered, and then disregarded just as quickly as a second idea to contact the Bellaramine again came.
But the next thought, and even those before it, were forgotten as the shadow fell over him. Once again, he felt as if he were the one moving, the gargantuan size of the ship hitting home the truly massive scale of the universe which he, at that earlier moment, had deigned to believe revolved around him.
Hey, give some critiques on my writing if you've got any, would ya, because I'm looking to improve.
|Author:||White [ Fri May 31, 2019 1:35 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: [Fanfiction] L-U-C-Y|
Chapter 3: Just simulate the emotions, then!
K's teeth chattered in the cold and the pain, a nervous rattle going through his body in the wake of the senseless numbness which itself barely hid the intense pain which seemed to underlie, subtly, his every thought and awareness.
“Greetings," the blue woman began, leaning over to peak her head into his field of view, "I am Litzel Totzet Eilis, my spoken name is Beryl; can you understand me?” she looked down at him as she said this, a winning smile plastered across her face. All the while, the soft THUD of her steady foot steps kept pace with him as he floated along the hallway.
K lay insensate across the table, certain he was hallucinating and unable to draw what little wherewithal he had away from the invisible stretcher which cushioned him against the air, and drew him in a steady line through the spacious walkways of the craft, along with the fiery haired woman it seemed to follow behind.
His mind briefly revisited the shining porthole this same invisible force had drawn him through, and, just as he started to draw the connection to all the alien abduction scenery he’d seen in the old movie archive, the woman spoke again.
“CAN YOU HEAR ME!” She yelled, speaking slowly and with a steady rhythm which encapsulated the usual, clipped formality of her speech and which seemed tailored to the stiff legged steps she took as she bent over to examine him.
“Uh, Yes, yes!” K jerked to respond, raising his own voice in an attempt to match her own. “I can hear you. Loud and clear,” he said, calming.
“Excellent,” she straightened as she walked, “I require to know if you have sustained any injuries other than the loss of your hand, it would convenience the medical crew to know of them beforehand.”
At this prompt K lifted his left arm, eyes widening to see the delicately wrapped bandaging that covered his stump, and another shiver ran through him at the memory of the chilled oxygen blasting through his suit.
Shaking himself free of the distraction, he turned to face her as he answered. “Uh, no,” he said, yelling through the howl of wind that assaulted him inside his helmet, “I don’t think so,” he added, shaking his head slightly.
“Thank you for your cooperation,” she said, again smiling. “We will begin removing your suit now, just say so if you experience any discomfort!”
“Wait, what?” K managed to protest before a sudden great PUFF of air blasted above his chest cavity. His own jump of excitement was restrained by the invisible bonds he was just now becoming aware of; he could still move his head, however, and, looking down, he saw with apparent amazement as his suit just...fell to ribbons, collapsing into a sheet of dead spaghetti around him as what seemed to be a thousand invisible knives combed efficiently through the structure.
Thankfully, they’d left his underclothes in tact. K, however, wasn’t in the state to appreciate this, as it was just as this became apparent that they’d strapped him into what he guessed was either a hospital bed or a dissection table. The sudden clamp of restraining guards around his wrists and ankles had him leaning more towards dissection table.
“...Ok,” K began after a short breath, uttering what, to him, seemed to be his second lucid thought since he was floating in the hall way several microseconds ago. “I...take it you’re the Loroi?” he began, building his theory on the fact that, increasingly, it seemed like this wasn’t a dream and that these aliens seemed to look like a bunch of humans, which could only have been the work of telepathy. Just like in that sequel to Planet of the Apes.
“Yes, we are Loroi,” the one called Beryl answered, hinting to him that they had, or perhaps just wanted him to think they had, more than one individual running the illusion.
In either case, it became apparent to him that he had more immediate problems, namely that he really didn’t know what to say; he was incredibly bad at holding a conversation.
“Oh, ok,” he said, “you’re the Loroi, got it,” he nodded his head, as if confirming the fact to himself by doing so.
“And, you are?” Beryl prodded.
“Oh, right! I’m K,” he said, attempting to gesture to himself and succeeding only in rattling against the manacle of his right wrist.
“Of course,” Beryl said, “I was asking for your species name, however.”
“Oh!” K’s eyes bulged, embarrassment flushing through him at how completely he’d misread the intent of the question. “I’m human,” he answered, the sudden act reminding him painfully of the memorized greeting he was supposed to have said ‘upon first contact with any alien beings.’
“Oh, wait!” He startled, interrupting Beryl, “do over,” in English, before relapsing into that formalized trade and continuing, with a surprisingly smooth and collected transition, “I am Lieutenant Junior Grade K, of the Terran scout vessel Bellarmine. We are on a mission of peace from the Terran Colonial Authority, on behalf of the Six Worlds of Humanity.”
It must be noted that the only force at this point keeping K from patting himself on the back was the Pauli Exclusion Principle.
“Oh, we-” Beryl suddenly turned, facing the bright diagram of a human skeleton which flickered on the nearby medical screen.
“Ensign, K,” she said with a worried look, “It appears your heart is beating erratically and you seem to have suffered from heavy loss of blood. With your permission, we would like-” again, she paused, turning her head to face in the opposite direction, the look of worry only deepening as she seemed to follow an invisible line against the metal walls of the room.
With a sharp, steel hiss, the sliding doors parted, and in stepped a tall woman with angular features and a shock of blue hair, flanked on both sides with what seemed to be a personal guard. Sparing K a single glance, she continued smoothly in her stride, stepping forward to face “Beryl”, as he’d come to know her, who, for her part, seemed to only barely succeed in not shrinking back from the woman, despite the support she seemed to be getting from the red haired Loroi who stood beside her.
All of this, K observed through the increasingly distorted and slushy view his lightheadedness seemed to obscure the world with.
K wasn’t completely oblivious, however. It only took him several seconds to pick up on the fact that this “conversation” between the Loroi was happening in complete silence. Actually, strangely enough, squinting his eyes, K noticed that it... looked more like an argument than a conversation.
‘Telepathy,’ K’s mind managed to guess, thoughts coming slow.
In the meantime, taking advantage of the sudden lack of attention focused on him, K decided to play the observation game with the newest arrival. She looked, to K’s estimation, to be military. A military official of a high rank.
And, not just any military official, K’s watery thoughts continued, unstructured; she looked exactly like the type of military official who, it seems, fate has determined will end up being the Secretary of Defence whenever anybody's shooting an alien invasion movie. You know, the one who at first convinces the president to call for a futile military strike in favor of the subtler method proposed by the hot, science type protagonist...
His thoughts returned to reality when the Loroi turned suddenly to face him, grave expressions all around, Beryl looking almost sad as she looked at him with what seemed to be pity. K didn’t know at the moment why exactly he thought so, but he was certain the older woman had just proposed an idea so brilliant that it was going to kill him.
Beryl started off taking a deep breath, continuing, “we require that you tell us the intent of your mission, the location of your home system and we also require that you lower your Lotai immediately and for the duration of your stay aboard the Tempest.”
“Of course, I’d love to!” K chirped with enthusiasm. “You know, that’s actually my job on this mission so, if you could just get me a star chart, I could point you to earth right quick.”
“We appreciate your willingness to cooperate, K,” Beryl ground out with a brittle tone, “but I must ask, again, that you lower your lotai, Immediately,” as she spoke the guards seemed to loom closer with threatening expressions.
“Ah, about that,” K started, voice trailing as he observed every Loroi express their particular brand of annoyance at that answer, “I’m actually not sure what it is you’re asking me to do. What is a...Lotai, was it?”
Beryl perked up at this, happy to explain and rushing to do so under strict expectations of her compatriots, “a Lotai is your, psychological barrier,” she said after a pause, continuing, “we desire to know how you have formed it, as well as how we may bypass it."
K only cocked an eyebrow at the strangely personal question, chalking the strangeness up to the Loroi’s telepathic nature. “Well, I’m not really sure what the exact cause of my Lotai is, in that case,” he said with the blindly searching tone he normally reserved for verbal exams, “but I guess, it’s mostly the result of the lack of accomplishment I feel in my everyday life. It’s kind of like...I just feel as if I’ve never earned any of my successes, you know? It’s difficult to explain, but I always feel a pressure to avoid responsibility, and notice that I often try to deflect-”
“K,” Beryl interrupted, an urgent note to her words, “please take this seriously and answer all questions promptly. The captain wishes for you to know that you are making her lose patience, and, even as a diplomat, I can not guarantee your safety unless-”
“I’m...sorry,” K shook his head in a sobering motion, “could you just repeat the key points very quickly. I’m really sorry, but I feeling light headed at the moment,” K said, licking his increasingly dry lips, feeling as if some invisible force were churning his guts to sickness.
“We need you to lower your Lotai, or otherwise tell us how to bypass it,” Beryl repeated, her words cutting off as if she lacked the time in which to speak them.
“Well, I don’t know, that may take years of therapy, to be honest,” K, replied, valiantly concealing his grogginess.
Beryl’s next, pleading words were killed instantly with a sharp, sweeping motion from The Secretary of Defense, as K had termed her.
Beryl looked back with a worried as she left through the door, herded before the Secretary along with the rest of the medical staff. The guards, in stark contrast, were left moving towards him.
|Author:||SVlad [ Sat Jun 01, 2019 12:29 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: [Fanfiction] L-U-C-Y|
Did you mean Tempest?
The first Loroi Alex met was Spiral and Talon who brought him aboard. But Alex was unconscious at that moment and doesn't remember that. The K was not, but it seems like Beryl was the first Loroi he saw.
|Author:||White [ Sat Jun 01, 2019 9:16 pm ]|
|Post subject:||Re: [Fanfiction] L-U-C-Y|
The opening with Beryl was meant more as the first experience he had that brought him out of his daze. I decided to skip describing the process of how they brought him onto the ship.
The first Loroi he would have seen would probably have been Fireblade, however, as it was her TK which fished him into the Bellaramine as hinted at by:
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