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Chapter 9



by Ignominy, Avrielle, Kevin Bradly, Montgomery Walker author list
in New Worlds: Creative Works > Myren Xyquine Raiders
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Initial Report

HD: 503.9.24 10:00 Hours aboard The Sands Dementor"Ladies and Gentlemen, this debriefing is to go over our battle tactics and effectiveness of our fresh upgrades," Grivyk spoke to the group. Avrielle wasn't present, but the First Mate of Hurricanes Eye was female and she was damn good at what she did. There were other women on other ships and they were almost as unsavory as the majority of the men, but quite shapely and gorgeous.

"As you all should know, before we left Nuribis, I had an upgrade installed on all ships laser weapons, a Liquid Nitrogen Laser Focal Lens. This upgrade is supposed to produce three different effects: increases damage done by a max of 8.5%, cools the weapon down by a max of 35% and increases the rate of fire by a max of 15%. This upgrade is intended to give our ships an edge in battle. Notice how I said 'max' for all three; this is because if you don't have a clean shot or if it's a long distance shot it's going to do less damage or if you're firing from the 'sweet spot' you might possibly do more damage. Not a whole lot, but it'll still be more."

"That unknown contact didn't really give us a chance to test the upgrade, but the data that we have show very good preliminary results. Power's Deception and Death's Pin Prick did the most damage to the UNPPF ships. As such, both ships provided very good data for analysis and I must say that I am very impressed with the results."

"On average, their lasers did 7.245% more damage and fired roughly 10% faster. These numbers are near the max limits that I mentioned, but that could be due to several different factors and discussing those would be a waste of breath and speculation.

"Hannibal." The lights dimmed and a holoprojection of a scene in battle appeared in the middle of the table. Grivyk continued, pointing to a spot on the projection, "Here, you see the unknown contact, the UNPPF vessel and Power's Deception. The proximity of the MXR frigate to the UNPPF vessel is closer that what it should be. Play." The projection showed lasers being exchanged between the MXR frigate and the UNPPF vessel. Ten seconds into the scene Grivyk commented, "Notice the beginning of the unknown contacts 'Sren?kao', an extremely powerful weapon that destroyed the UNPPF ship. Stop. Right here, there is back blast from the 'Sren?kao and the UNPPF explosion.

"The combination of these is what crippled the Power's Deception. Data reports show that prior to that moment the ship was at 85-90% stability. After the explosion, the ships structure stability dropped 40%. Had it been farther away, the ship would still be with us. I warn you here and now, if any of you make a mistake like that, your ship will enter Vortex with the rest of the group. If it is ripped apart from the forces involved with Vortex that is your problem."

The meeting continued for an hour, discussing the battle and determining new tactics and the like. Grivyk had the data and battle recordings transferred to all ships, for the captains to dissect it in more detail.

Grivyk felt good about the meeting and thought that his group was becoming better, despite the fact that he had now lost a total of two ships. This is so expensive. Ughh...

He returned to the bridge to make sure that everything was ok and that they would be ready to enter Vortex again in another hour's time.

He was mentally tired. Saying all that need to be said and viewing everything from as many different angles as possible took a lot of brain power. He returned to his quarters and flopped on his bed, putting his arm over his eyes. Laying down felt so good. If only I had some music... He groaned as he got up and turned on his Jazz collection. That's better. It's been a while since I've done something really romantic with Avrielle. Perhaps I'll surprise her tonight.

Being a warship didn't supply a whole lot of amenities. He did have candles, but what he really wanted was rose pedals. Something to keep in mind for the next trip. Let's light some incense that smells like the ocean. He turned the lights down low and lit the candles and incense. He went to his wine cupboard and pulled out a bottle of special 1985 red wine. Having aged for centuries, this wine was very, very good and he only used it for special occasions.

Grivyk thought about the past couple of days. He actually felt really bad. The funeral service that Avrielle had wanted to do ended up being a flop because no one showed up. Of course, that was his entire fault as he hadn't really made it a requirement for everyone to be there. He promised himself that once they docked again, he would have a proper service. He knew that Avrielle had been less happy, but a few people had shown up and the service happened any way, however, it wasn't the great ceremony that Avrielle was hoping to have. It was good, but it wasn't what she expected. At the end, she glowered at Grivyk and left the cargo bay without speaking to him.

I suppose this is my chance to make for my lack of enthusiasm. Avrielle walked into the room. Grivyk had been sort of dancing by himself and was caught off guard. He laughed and walked over to his wine bottle. "My love, I realize this has been a less successful trip for you. Constant emotional roller coasters and a less than friendly environment." He finished pouring the wine and walked over to Avrielle and handed her a glass. "I should have made it clearer before we left what you should have expected. Now, because I haven't, you're constantly near the brink of tears because of the gentle, pacifistic nature of your people. Humans, I suppose, can endure so many different feelings because we are ignorant." He saw her smirk and new that he had said something right.

"To love and friendship, may the wine be as good as the blessing." He clinked his glass against hers and drank deeply. It felt like fire going down his throat. He smiled sagely. He set their glasses on the table and put his hand around her waist and started dancing. "You know, when I first saw you, I thought you were an angel. But now that I have experienced you friendship and love, I should have known you to be a goddess." He kissed her deeply on the lips and savored the rosewood taste.

"Oh believe me, I'm no goddess, or angel. If I were I'd have better control over my emotions and not get so upset whenever something doesn't go my way. And I'd know what to write in my report for the High Elder.?

?But Grivyk, how can they just not care to come? It was their colleagues, maybe even their friends. I thought they would want to pay their respects. Or in human terms does that simply mean getting drunk, spending two seconds thinking about the dead, getting even drunker and then passing out in a puddle of drool?? Grivyk chuckled at that analogy but had to admit for some it was their way of coping and was probably less painful than a big deal made every time they lost someone else.

?You have to understand, these people have lost so many friends and colleagues, after a while it pays off to make oneself a little numb to it." he explained.

She sighed. "I guess I understand, but I, I feel bad for those whose lives are reduced to a couple of laughs when everyone is so much more than that, even these pirates." Avrielle rested her head on Grivyk's shoulder, "I've missed you today. It felt like you were miles away all day and the day has been so long. At least some people came, and those that did seemed really glad to have a funeral service. Jeff was there too, like he said he'd be. Have you met Jeff yet?"

The casual mention of some man's name Grivyk didn't know personally momentarily gave him that same expression he'd first worn when Avrielle said ?Hello? to Tim for the first time on the bridge. She supposed it was the initial animal instinct to protect one's loved ones but then his face softened again and he admitted he didn't know who she was talking about.

"Oh, he's from the Power's Deception. We talked a bit in the gym. He was at the funeral too. Tim hasn't been around all day, I asked. I've been told he called in sick today and didn't come to the funeral either. Do you suppose he's alright?"

***


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