This is a collection of short in-character fiction pieces about Awakened Industries, a group of capsuleers and their crews living in the enigmatic and dangerous regions of Wormhole Space in EVE Online. None of the protagonists are actual characters or corporations in-game. All similarities with persons fictional or real are possibly coincidental and only sometimes intentional. - Emergent Patroller

For an introduction to this blog refer to this link. You may also want to check out the guide for new readers

: The stories on this blog contain mature themes involving sexuality and violence and are not suitable for minors or sensitive people.

9 Nov 2011

The Wrong Crowd - Part 3

Considering that their known-space destination lay on the Amarr side of the border between the low-security regions of Solitude and Aridia, it was unwise to appear there with either a Gallente or Minmatar ship for a peaceful rendezvous. Keram, as the wanted man that he was, would also not be a good choice. So the lot fell on Shisei to fly out a small Caldari shuttle and meet with the locally deployed detachment of the Crusader fleet. It appeared that a contingent of the Imperial Paladin Order had been taken off it's usual duties at the border with Minmatar space, to fight the increasing smuggler-trade moving across this barely controlled frontier region between Gallente Federation and Amarr Empire.

The small bird-like craft emerged from the wormhole into the Shirshocin system. Sylera regarded the unmoving face of the Achura man at the helm beside her in the dusky glow of the small yellow sun. He had not said a word or quirked a facial muscle since they undocked. Even when he was told by Cedrien what his task would be, he had only uttered a small grunt of approval and nodded. 'The restraint and discipline of the Achura is well known, but I did not expect such stoicism.' she reflected. 'What a strange and diverse group those wormhole capsuleers are'

Presently Shisei engaged the communication systems. 'This is Shisei Kanioota of the Caldari shuttle designation A-IND-2 calling the Crusader fleet' he transmitted via holographic link on a frequency Sylera had provided.

The holo-projector on the control board of the small bridge activated and showed the bald and stern-faced head of an Amarr Templar wearing a segmented metal skullcap. 'This is Tribunus Colonel Temerel Nash-Kelar of the Imperial Paladin Order – commander of the Crusader battleship Deliverance. How do you know this frequency?'

'It was entered by my passenger' Shisei answered truthfully 'One Sylera Aulithe, a member of your forces.' he specified.

Wary surprise knotted the wrinkled brow of the veteran Amarr commander. 'How is it she became your passenger?' he inquired with suspicion.

'She was found captive aboard a Minmatar ship.' Shisei replied impassively. 'She wished to rejoin the cadres of the Crusade'

The Templar nodded. 'Very well. We will transmit the coordinates for a rendezvous. We expect you to come unarmed and alone' he emphasized.

Shisei simply nodded wordlessly and aligned the small craft to warp as soon as he received the coordinates.


'The reward was quite substantial for such a young capsuleer' Shisei said thoughtfully after he had finished his report to Cedrien several hours later.

'Maybe she comes from an important noble family' Cedrien shrugged dismissively. 'I am not complaining about them paying us more than we expected.' he added. 'In any case, she's back where she belongs now.'

'Captain Roucellis, we have an incoming fluid-router transmission for you' sounded a crewman's voice over the intercom. 'Allright, pass it on through' Cedrien replied.

The holographic projector on Cedrien's smoothly rounded office table came to life and presented the rendering of a mature and hardened Jin-Mei man, wearing the uniform of an Aegis Commander serving in the Federal Defense Union. 'Greetings Cedrien' he said with a slow nod of respect 'It is good to see you after all this time' he added.

'Yun Wei-Chian' Cedrien exclaimed joyfully, then caught himself 'Sorry, Aegis Commander Yun' Cedrien amended with a salute.

Wei-Chian waved away Cedrien's military formality with a small chuckle. 'Forget about that, we both know that you are no longer under my command.' he sighed nostalgically 'A regretful circumstance that nevertheless came to pass for all the right reasons'

Shisei quirked a brow at the ambivalent statement, but Cedrien knew which meaning it carried and bowed his head thankfully at the elder officer. 'So, how come you contact me at this particular time … Wei-Chian?' he obviously felt awkward using the man's given name.

'Well, it so happens that my Defense Union fleet got an anonymous tip about an unregistered secret Amarr convoy that would move across Solitude to reach the Intaki Syndicate. We intercepted them in the Faurulle system.' he paused and operated some control off the display. A familiar young elfin face appeared as a portrait next to Commander Yun's holographic representation. 'This is one of the survivors. She was held captive on a Crusader ship, and she mentioned your name. Is she one of yours?'

Cedrien knotted his brow and stroked his close-cropped beard 'Held captive?' he pondered 'Well, we ended up rescuing her some time ago. Eventually we returned her back to the Crusader fleet for a reward, because that is where she wanted to go.' he explained, still confused.

'As it looks, she was subjected to some harsh interrogation. We found mind-controlling chemicals as well as pain-amplification substances in her bloodstream. She is barely recovered at this time.' the Jin-Mei officer elaborated. 'In her stupor she repeated your name several times, so this is why I sought to get in contact with you.'

Shisei looked at Cedrien across the table with an unspoken question on his calm face. Cedrien sighed. 'Well. We still have that exit to Shirshocin. I guess we can send out a covert-ops craft to meet with you.' Cedrien paused 'Actually, I will come myself. If an offender like me is welcome on your ship, that is' he added with a smile.

Commander Yun laughed 'Don't be ridiculous. You are more welcome on my ship than several superior officers I could think of. I will have my best tea ready for you. I am looking forward to seeing you in person again my young friend'


Again Alira sat in the sickbay, looking into the gray eyes of that fine-featured Amarr visage. 'So I guess it was not the welcome you expected' she jabbed at Sylera

The young woman's face was overcast with desperate anger. 'They drugged me and interrogated me. They planned to bring me to a secret facility hidden in Intaki Syndicate space to conduct experiments with me.' she squinted her eyelids together, squeezing out tears of rage 'They treated me no better than the Min … the people who had originally captured me.'

Alira had to smile involuntarily at how Sylera had stopped herself from saying 'Minmatar' Despite herself she began to feel a bit of sympathy for the girl. 'I know many who have experienced worse at the hands of the Amarr Empire.' she said emphatically.

Sylera wiped away the tears with the sleeve of her tunic. 'How could my own people, my own brothers in the Crusade, do this to me? At the same time, a group of … renegades like you show more compassion than they do?' her breast heaved with a shuddering sigh 'I don't know where I belong anymore' she said and suddenly came to a stop 'I rather wonder whether you still know who you are' Sandrielle's words echoed through her mind. 'Did she know that this would happen, and if so, how?' cold shivers coursed over her body at the unsettling thought.

'Looks like you fell in with the wrong crowd, young lady' Alira said as she stood up to stretch her lithe body languidly. 'Well, seems you're stuck with us now. Guess we have to get you a ship to fly.' she turned to leave. 'Report to Cedrien about that when you are ready' Alira added on her way out.


Elsewhere on the station, Sandrielle finished a final check to make sure all traces of her anonymous messages to Tribunus Colonel Nash-Kelar and Aegis Commander Yun had been erased. Satisfied with the results she disconnected from the fluid-router terminal. 'That one will make a good student' she thought to herself and returned to her duties.

1 comment:

  1. This story (and the others) are excellent. You capture the mood of living in a wormhole, the connection between the outcast crew and above all manage to thread in the racial backstory seamlessly into the plot. The characters are "real" and I started caring for them and pondering what is next. Awesome work, I am really looking forward to the next story and installment.