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Can only be one

Her blood was lava, her head was a hurricane, her soul was broken. A hundred methods of killing Eilyin bounced through her imagination. All I need to do is take out these guards. Come on, it’s easy. Just kill them. Break their necks, her instinct seemed to tell her. No, they have guns. Let them live, her logic replied. I don’t care, try it anyway, her emotions chimed in. They either read her mind or knew her reputation, for they kept their guns pointed during the entire walk and made every move with a careful hesitation. I recognize the one in front… The one with the scars across his cheek… he doesn’t look happy to be escorting me. I see the sweat dripping down his neck. The walk took a toll on her legs, which had lost a large amount of muscle during her sleep. But she didn’t dare complain. She couldn’t appear weak. Besides, at least she could feel. Pain was a luxury, a pleasure of life that she had been denied for too long. A door opened when they approached; the door to the hangars, and Schaa was shocked to see her old ship, looking just like when she had left it. “But...”
“Eilyin knows your tools of war. Don’t expect another one when you lose it.” The guard with the scarred face gave her a shove, and she made the rest of the walk herself. She had no illusions about the reason for this sudden ‘generosity’. A brand new ship... But what’s with this awful fit they gave me? At least they have the decency to replace my faction guns... Could I use them inside the hangar? No, no doubt they have 1600’s trained on me right now. I think I’ve had enough of this place. She coaxed the ship out of the hangar as fast as she could manage.
The burn of hate diminished the further Schaa got from Saberuas. Plus, it was thrilling to be flying again; to be doing anything besides sleeping in a vat. After a few jumps, she saw no more of Eilyin’s patrols and cargo runners, and she kept going. Infinite space unfolded after every jump; a never-ending freedom to go wherever and do whatever. The glass captivity had ended, and she felt like a new chapter in her life had began. Too many years of killing, too many dead souls on her conscious. Very rarely did Schaa experience herself the oppression and violence that she forced on others; her experience with Eilyin showed her the consequences of her career. And maybe I’m just getting too old for this… Her clone age was only 4 months, but her actual birth date was over 80 years ago. Her young body was limited by the experience cumulated in her mind: A fresh brain quickly becomes old when filled with memories of death and hardship. Those two things have been entwined into Schaa’s life since the beginning. Piracy is for the young. Maybe I’ll hang up the eye patch and try mining. But she couldn’t help but laugh at that ridiculous idea. No, I don’t think that’s for me. I can sort this all out at home. She brought up the star map. My system is 43 jumps away. 43 friggin jumps. The ship aligned to the gate.
I hate long trips.

Khis became aware of his semi-celebrity status when the first attempt on his life failed. A large frigate fleet awaited him and his escorts, but shoddy tactics and inadequate weapons are the downfall of every inexperienced merc. Khis’s team obliterated them before his shields dropped. Khis was both wanted and hated by almost every drug boss, and thanks to him, Ossin suddenly began climbing ranks and achieving the success only enjoyed by ruthless kingpins. Of course, step on a few fingers and you’ll find the bounty on your head grows every day. Khis escort fleet’s tripled in size. Then an assassin tried rushing him with a knife while he was walking through the station. Bodyguards began tagging along too. And while he was getting richer by the hour, Ossin was enjoying the true fruits of Khis’s labor.

The station allowed her first-privilege boarding access, but no doubt they wondered where she had been for all this time. Leaving the pod was tough to do, even after her muscles have had hours to regenerate. Trekking to her apartment was even tougher. Eilyin did nothing to keep her body from atrophying; followed no stasis safety procedures. Not that such a thing is really necessary, for stasis is illegal in all space. Even CONCORD isn’t allowed to practice it. The staircase felt like hot coals. Muscle pain is rarely experienced in pilots, who never need to physically strain themselves. Thankfully, the vendors sold just the drugs she needed. A cocktail of nerve suppressors and muscle hardeners gradually soothed the fire in her calves, but did nothing to stop the inferno in her head. “You shouldn’t mix those,” the vendor told her. “Those pills will set your insides on fire.” Fuck it.
“Give me a focus booster, too.” She told the vendor. A concerned look grew on his face. She knew what he thinking. “I can handle it.” The relief couldn't come fast enough.
A small gang of young boys strutted past her. Most of them clutched cigarettes awkwardly in their fingers; pretending to walk with the swag that rich men possess. The station patrol guards glared at them, their emotions hidden by dark shades. But they did nothing. Not 20 meters away, Schaa saw the obvious signs of a drug deal about to happen. The guards stood with the lazy stature they always have. They pretend to be vigilant. They pretend to defend the law. But they wear laziness on their uniforms. What is the law anymore?

A dusty mess greeted her at her room. Instinctively, she reached for her cigarettes, but realized she didn’t have any on her. She eyed the pack on the desk. Her addiction commanded her to reach for it, but Schaa ignored it. She laid on her bed and waited for her focus booster to fully kick in. She could feel in flow through the veins in her arms and up the veins in her neck. She felt it when her brain switched gears and her vision sparkled with unnatural precision and clarity. She loved this feeling: She felt young again, like a lion about to make it’s first kill. Her stress was a hammer that pounded her skull, but this drug was a monster that enveloped her soul.
What do I do with Khis? She saw herself, 100 years from now. Lying down in a frozen tube, the dead skin held to her face by ice. Her mind had lost all memory and potential; she was a vegetable, completely useless, unable to be restored. The one and only true death for a capsuleer. The thought was unbearable. Then she thought of Khis. The young pilot, a little foolish but strong in his heart. No doubt, he held great potential. I can see the ways it happens… He flies his cargo ship, blissfully unaware of me as I sit at the next gate. He decloaks and I strike: He’s dead in 60 seconds. Or maybe Khis is walking through a station, and I simply come up behind and shoot him. He sips a poisoned drink; He is sucked out an airlock. No matter what happens, Khis dies a fast and easy death. A century of slow death does not await him, only a quick release. Damn you, Eilyin- it’s just not fair- he has so much potential, and you’re making me waste him to feed your pride. No hell is hot enough for you. One day, Eilyin, you will pay... She reached for her dog tags, but suddenly remembered they were gone; she had them on the day she let Khis go. The last relics of her friends were lost now, floating in space…you will pay for EVERYTHING! Khis, I am sorry. I am so sorry. But you have to die. Not for anything you have done, but because this galaxy is run by bad men. Because I am weak, because I am selfish, and because of my sins, you must die. The one thing I can offer you is that you will be remembered. Remembered, and avenged. One day, Eilyin will breathe his last breath. One day, and I don’t know when, Eilyin will receive the death he deserves, and he will never wake up. And for you, Khis, I am going to be the woman who does it. The final phase of the focus booster flowed through her mind; she felt like the galaxy opened up to her. It’s time to get to work…


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StovAkor on :

I'm diggin it. Can hardly wait for the conclusion. :-)

DGB on :

WTF is with all these random comments? I know they're all ads, but why are they written so awkwardly?

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