lunes, 28 de noviembre de 2011

SDIV - Chapter Eight Part 2

Kermadec Island
Disputed Zone

“Get them on board Sargeant.”

Johns had discarded his armour, swapping the suit for a worn green uniform. His men moved their volunteers on board, a mixture of green troops and veterans. He had chosen his people personally, no mistakes would be forgiven on this voyage. The second most powerful man on Macaulay breathed in deeply, slapped his Sargeant on the shoulder and laughed loudly. This was more like it. Viker could stay here with his new-found pleasure and sycophants, Johns craved war. A growl bubbled at the back of his throat, a familiar sound he thought gone forever. Perhaps things were finally beginning to look up. As he heard the ramp lifting , he wondered where Alana was, and what she was doing. He could have done with her by his side.

Unknown Location

“So, how does this work?”

Shan looked puzzled. Each of the screens was extremely complex, a mix of virtual holographic technology, hard screen and table-top map-ware. The planet was divided into zones which contained their own habitat and microclimate. Troops were highlighted in one colour, non-combatants in another. Information scrolled on disposition, weapons, life signs, aptitude, power bonuses and risk.

“Games begin simply, usually in one zone. Players then can draft in further troops depending upon strict rules. You can see here how a game develops.”

The Ori flicked his fingers over a virtual keyboard, setting in motion a simulation of a Game.

“This is one of the most famous of Games. It decimated a world, causing the financial ruin of two houses and the virtual annihilation of breeding stock. It is how my family ultimately decided that they were the only true exponents and deserved to own and run the Game as they wished to do so.”

"You lost then,” laughed Shan, “how appropriate.” He waved his hand around the Control Room,

“Now, show me how...”

“We’ve already stated...aargh!”

“Not listening. This is now my Game. I want to play right now.”

His finger hovered over a rune, “What does this one do?”

“No!” screamed the Ori as the signal was sent.


Within the bowels of the Flagship, relays clicked and whined as nine non-descript pods began a short journey. Fluid was drained in the process, electronic stimuli shuddering through eight slumbering bodies. The ninth held a being who merely smiled, flexing wrinkled appendages and baring teeth in anticipation. Soon, it would be time to live again.

Alana stirred, chemicals rapidly being evacuated from her body as her enhanced metabolism kicked in. As she woke, so too did her suit, her HUD flickering into solidity and feeding data directly to her starved senses. Before she could formulate a plan the pods rocked to a stop, energy build-up causing them to oscillate in anticipation. With a huge surge they were expelled from the ship, curving away slightly, before heading for the planet’s surface.

Fold Space
Unknown Location

Johns checked the read out again, they had been travelling for what seemed an eternity, but time was deceptive within the vortex of folded space. He knew where they were going, his senses still attuned to his ex-squad member. Whatever Viker had conjured, Alana somehow called to him. His initial thought was to follow the Construct’s destructive trail, but deep down he knew it was wrong. Those on board with him believed more in Johns than they did in their once angelic Lord. He trusted them to do the right thing and he knew that following Alana and her people was important.

“How much longer, Sir?”

It was a valid question and he knew one all shared.

“Soon,” he said, “very soon.”

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