James Drake blinked his eyes as he awoke, the sudden light momentarily blinding him until his eyes adjusted.
"Oh good," said a soft feminine voice, "You're awake."
Groggy and disoriented, he tried to identify the voice. "Mom?"
The voice responded with a giggle. "You don't have a mother, silly. Never did. But I am a mother, yes. Just not yours."
As he began to focus, his memories returned. They did that quite quickly and easily, these days. Ever since someone had toyed with his brain's wiring like a kitten with a ball of yarn.
"Oh... hey Anne," he said, focusing his eyes on the source of the voice. "Um... where are we? What happened?"
"Zikaren fleet," said the bioroid with a frown. "Seems they consider us pirates, simply due to the fact that we're affiliated with the Imperium."
"Grudge much?" he muttered. "So then... the Syndicate is hunting us. The Zikarens will shoot us on site. Seems we have no safe place to turn in this entire blasted sector. So where ARE we?"
"We're at Vegalia station," said Anne with a shrug. "It was the only place with the technology to repair the Vengeance."
"Ugh..." said Drake. "And how much did THAT set us back?"
"Only about five," she said with a shrug. "Pocket change."
"Five MILLION IC?" asked Drake. "Pocket change?"
"Oh no, not five million," said the girl with a coy smile. "Five billion. Don't worry, I've already covered it. This one's on me."
"What the heck?" asked Drake. "When did you get that much money?"
"Hm..." said Anne, putting a finger to her lips. "The initial patents sold for a trillion. Plus, I'm getting a bit more for every augmentation conducted, and they're asking me for some more ideas... oh, a lot has happened."
Drake blinked. "You sold your patents to the Imperial Armada?"
"Mmmm.. yep," said Anne. "And unfortunately, I'll no longer be able to to offer augmentations to just anyone... Imperial law has deemed them military-grade technology, you see. And we're going to need a new crew... we're still continuing the mission, right?"
"You just made enough money to be labelled among the richest in the galaxy," said Drake, "And you want to run around playing Corsair. Well, I won't force you to stay, but nor will I deny your services."
Suddenly, her arms were around him. "I could never leave you, James. You're my Creator, after all."
"Right..." said Drake. "Well, glad to hear it. Let's see about recruiting some crew then, shall we?"
On the Surian outpost of Vegalia Station, James Drake felt naked without his powered combat armor. But there should be little to no danger, as Surians kept security pretty well. Commies, he thought to himself, At least they know how to maintain control and security.
Stepping in to a typical spaceport cantina, he posted a job application on the station's network, using his hyperlink implant to do so wirelessly, with a simple thought.
Sitting at a table, he looked over the room. Looked to be the right type of place... mercenaries, bounty hunters, even a few smugglers were likely to be present, though they were unlikely to be carrying contraband at the moment, due to the mandatory inspections conducted by the Surian security forces. All different races were present... type A humanoids such as Achenarans and Surians, a lizard-scaled man in the corner... even a half-Eldar, it seemed.
Ordering up a drink, James Drake sat at the table, sipping on the black Achenaran rum and relaxing.
Last edited by Holeypaladin; 12-15-2012 at 06:50 PM.
Ruler of Silverwater
Lydia watched the Achenaran intently as he say down at the bar. She noticed that he had posted a job application on the hypernet, and decided to investigate further. A corsair crew mission. With a Writ of... er, whatever it was? This sounded interesting to Lydia... Very interesting indeed. The man's name was familiar to her... Sir James Drake. James Drake? Where did she know that name from? She racked her brain until one little gem popped up. James Drake, the privateer! Was this guy really him? He seemed far from the privateer Lydia had heard of as a teenager. Lydia was only 21, but she had three years in the military under her belt already. She was a member of the crack Strike Team Alpha of the Kislevite Special Forces, in effect a commando in all but name, and she cared little what people called her as a job title. Her military training had started at 15, with admittance to Izhevsk Military Academy, and she was quickly selected for the KSF, instead of the Army or the Navy... Lydia relished the opportunity to prove herself as a superior soldier. Even unaugmented, she was a lean, fit woman who was easily capable of feats of strength that her slim frame might not initially appear possible to perform. With her implants and enhancements, Lydia is a force to be reckoned with.
This is combined with a fierce temper. Lydia's temper is short, and very violent. She enjoys inflicting pain on her victims, which once included Kaliell Thorwyn, her closest friend... It was a test of mental strength for them both... Kaliell was slightly unnerved by Lydia's methods of torture. Officially, Kislev was against torture, but being both officially dead and thus outside the law, Lydia is brutal to those who keep silent. Kaliell survived the torment of Lydia's torturous attentions, with no hard feelings.
But for now, Lydia was in Zikaren space. This was not helpful. She got up and walked over to the Achenaran, taking a seat next to him. "Sir James Drake, I presume? I read your job posting. My name is Lydia Sukhoia; you won't have heard of me..." she dropped her voice to a whisper, "I'm a Kislevite commando. I'm interested in joining your crew."
Originally Posted by Jannge on Skype
Drake noted a girl approaching... half-eldar, by the looks of her. Other half was probably Kislevite... one of the few races known to have friendly relations with the normally-aloof Eldar race. Also one of the more advanced Empires in their sector of space... around the same tech levels as the Zikarens, if he remembered correctly.
"Yo," he said as the girl took a seat. "Have a drink. Probably won't affect you, what with your augmented physiology and all that. Takes me too much before I start to feel it, too. You have any idea how hard it is to get your blood cops tailored to allow at least some of the alcohol into your system so that you can have a good time every once in awhile? Eh, you probably do, come to think about it."
"Hmm..." Drake said, thinking over the girl's credentials. "Heh... you're overqualified for most crews. But you'd fit right in to mine. We do the high-risk jobs that no one else can manage. Just like your squad, no doubt."
It didn't take him long to think about it. "You're hired," he said, "So long as you can play by our rules. Commandos have a reputation for being rather brutal and I don't like to kick puppies or kill civilians. Find it rather tasteless, really."
Ruler of Silverwater
Lydia laughed. "We do stuff so you don't have to, eh? I like that." She had concerns over his principles of honour. Did he think she was a brutal bitch who loved to kill innocent civilians? Kicking puppies? She wasn't a savage. She wasn't... Sergei. God, she hated that royal pain in the arse. He was a bastard of the highest quality. The man was hardly her equal in intelligence, let alone as a tactician or assassin. He was a run-in, guns blazing kind of guy, not a careful planner. He was a sexist, misogynist dinosaur, a relic of the ancient times. Lydia held him in contempt. She was no sapphic, nor was she sexist against men, but Sergei was an idiot. A cretin.
"I think you and I will get along just fine, Sir Drake. D'you mind if I simply call you James, or are you a stickler for etiquette?" She bought herself an ice vodka, a drink that was chilled to 0 degrees Celsius, served over ice. Lydia's favourite.
Last edited by Legion X51; 12-11-2012 at 04:51 PM.
Originally Posted by Jannge on Skype
Jerun had been on the station for several solar days, scanning everything and everyone in sight. It had gathered quite a bit of data which it was currently in the process of sending back to vel space.
Jerun was plugged into a computer terminal in the corner of the room, sending the aforementioned data while simultaneously siphoning electricity from the station's energy grid to power itself. That was when it noticed the achenaran's job offer appear on the local network.
Jerun turned its head and primary photoreceptor toward the humanoid. Jerun quickly accessed all the information it could about the privateer. Jerun became... excited, for lack of a better term. Serving on a mercenary would be an excellent opportunity to explore, and perhaps even discover some evidence of the vals' fate along the way. Jerun disconnected itself from the terminal and approached the achenaran.
Jerun was aware that the application had been sent from an implant, but it did not know the capabilities of this creature's device. Jerun was now standing next to the former Corsair, its large, primary photoreceptor looking straight at him, but Jerun did not yet attempt to speak. Instead, it attempted to network with the organic through his implant.
Again, Jerun did not know the device's capabilities, and it did not wish to damage another sentient's neural network, so it transmitted only a small stream a data: a question, inquiring whether the humanoid was capable of non-linguistic communication.
"Etiquette..." Drake chuckled. "All that Etiquette stuff is one of the main reasons why I steer clear of the aristocracy. Oh sure, I might hold the title of a Knight, but I'm no Royal, that's for sure. None of that whole courtly etiquette stuff for me... give me a ship, some guns, a contract or ten, and I'm good to go. Expect me to call you Lydia, though, if you're going to be all informal and stuff."
He noted the approach of... an android. It seemed to have some sort of biomechanical technology involved in its technology, but it was definitely synthetic in nature. Probably largely due to Anne's constant complains of the limitations of organic material, or something. Still, as organic sentients tended to be quite attached to their fleshy shells, chances are this was some sort of droid or artificial intelligence life form.
He noted the android attempting to establish a connection with his hypernet. An inquiry, of sorts. With a wordless smile, Drake broadcast a message through the hyperlink to the droid. "Yo," he thought through the wireless connection, "Wassup? You here about the job application?"
Ruler of Silverwater
"It's a non-talking robot. Great..." Ludia felt uncomfortable around the robot... She was such a xenophobe. Act your age, not your height in feet and inches. It was, after all, just one robot! She was 21, she had seen more horrors of the galaxy than most other people at 21. A robot isn't all that scary.
She drank her vodka and felt the alcohol rush through her system, but it was swiftly suppressed by her body. Her implants afforded her panimmunity from poisons and disease and the like...
Originally Posted by Jannge on Skype
Jerun was intriegued. This organic was communicating verbally... through the network. Jerun decided that it was the wisest course of action to follow suit.
"Yes" thought Jerun in response. "I wish to offer my services aboard your vessel."
Jerun paused for a moment before thinking once more: "Is James Drake's implant capable of receiving technical specifications?" Jerun searched its drives for information regarding its frame and prepared to send them to privateer, but waited until confirmation from him that it would not cause damage to his synapses.
Drake suppressed a chuckle at how disturbed the half-Eldar was by the nature of the robot. Big tough commando girl, scared of a simple machine capable of complex thought and calculation. Whether or not it was fully sentient or not was yet to be determined, as he was drawing a blank at the nature of this creature so far, but it didn't matter. Seemed it wanted to work for his crew. Since the half-eldar seemed uncomfortable, Drake said, "You can head over to the ship whenever you're ready. Think we'll work well together. I was ASF, so we did... similar operations."
"It's a hyperlink," said Drake wordlessly to the robot, attaching the specifications of the hyperlink's capabilities to the message. It was a tiny, compact, organic computer system with a high-speed wireless connection, capable of all the functions of a laptop computer and cellular telephone, as well as accessing local hypernets for the systems advanced enough to have them. It didn't have the capabilities of faster than light communications, as FTL radios were far too bulky to be miniaturized into an organic implant, but at least it had local access, as well as access to his ship's computer systems as well. But it was more than capable of receiving technical specifications and data transfers without interfering with the neural processes of the user.
Jerun was still not about to take chances with another being's safety. It began transferring data regarding its current frame and personal history to James, but slowly, assuming that his implant was non-quantum.
It also added: "This is this frame's capabilities, requirements, and history." over the small hyperlink as it sent the data. "It is my hope that James Drake will find it satisfactory." it added.
Jerun continued to ignore the half-elder at the table, assuming her to be irrelevant to the current dialogue. Jerun had not yet scanned her either, and at this time did not know anything about her. Uncharacteristic of it.
"I await James Drake's response." Jerun transmitted.