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

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

20 May 2012

Jihad - Part1

Sandrielle found the person she had been looking for standing precariously right at the ledge above the station's massive shield generator. The pulsing light emanating from the powerful machine below, sharply outlined Sylera's silhouette in the opening of the maintenance corridor they were in.

'What are you doing all alone in here?' Sandrielle asked the young Amarrian while approaching her slowly from behind.

'Staring at the thing that separates us from oblivion.' Sylera replied dryly without turning.

Sandrielle put her hand on the other woman's shoulder and immediately felt the tenseness of her muscles. It's nature indicated a dangerously self-destructive inner turmoil according to Sandrielle's well trained ability to read people. 'Come away from the edge.' she softly urged.

'We all live behind the shield projected by this generator.' Sylera reflected with a monotone voice. 'If it runs out of fuel, if the shield drops, we are all exposed and defenseless.' 

She finally turned around and her gray eyes stared coldly at Sandrielle 'What would remain if we were stripped of those defenses? If our home would be razed and it's remains scattered?' she pushed away Sandrielle's hand with her own. 'All of what we were would become part of that accretion disk out there and finally burn in the furnace of that star.'

'Tell me, Sandrielle.' Sylera continued and kept her eyes locked onto her opposite 'What would it all mean if nothing remained? Every atom transformed by nuclear fusion. Forgotten in an unnamed solar system in an unknown region of the galaxy.' Caustic cynicism imbued Sylera's words and her fair face was marred by a cruel smirk.

Sandrielle shook her head and then leveled her gaze at the younger woman. 'Don't think like that. There's only misery down that path.' she advised sternly.

Sylera pushed away the Gallente and hissed at her through clenched teeth. 'What do you know about misery. All you are occupied with is your schemes and your self-control.' Angrily she began to pace down the sparsely lit corridor.

'You should get some control over your self right now.' Sandrielle called after the enraged Amarrian. 'I know more about how you feel than you know.' she added.

Sylera stopped and turned around with a challenging expression on her recently matured features. 'Is that so?!' she shouted at Sandrielle. 'My family thinks me dead. They will be killed if they ever come to know that I am alive.' she clenched her slender hands into fists. 'Those people destroyed my mind.' her voice started to break and she uttered a heaving sigh. 'They destroyed my soul.' she began to sound as if close to tears. 'No technological trickery of Alira can give that back to me.' finally Sylera collapsed against the featureless bulkhead and buried her face in her hands.

Sandrielle approached and sat down beside her. 'Do you think I was always the woman I am now?.' she began, and stared into the nothingness where buried memories lie. 'I grew up on a mining colony in Faurulle system. A frontier location between Syndicate and Aridia. A young girl from a simple family with simple ambitions.' she took a long, deep breath. 'One day the capsuleers of The Hive came through our system.'

A grim expression darkened her subtly tanned face. 'I was there to hear my father beg them on an open channel to spare his life and the lives of his mining crew. They told him he could leave if he abandoned his ship, the rest of the fleet and our outpost.'

Sylera raised her head to look at Sandrielle in silence while the Gallente woman paused, reliving the painful memory. 'After they landed, they took all the adults and slowly roasted them to death with the turbine exhausts of their ships. The children were rounded up and brought back to their fleet.'

Sylera shook her head in disbelief 'Why? To use them as slaves?'

'No.' Sandrielle replied 'That is how the Hive grows. They abduct children, and over the course of years they break their will, erase everything that once made them who they are and then, finally, they make them capsuleers of the Hive. That is how I got my plugs.' she explained. “Most of the children die. Either because of the grueling conditions they are kept in, or suicide, or for the entertainment of the crews. I saw my younger brother die when they …' Sandrielle drew her eyebrows together in a mixture of pain and anger. 'He was only ten years old.'

Sylera's expression softened for the first time since they had rescued her from that secret research facility. 'How did you survive?' she asked with quiet compassion.

Sandrielle got up and looked down at the fair haired Amarrian. 'By always remembering who I was, and by knowing what I would never be: A victim.' she stated with grim determination 'And neither should you be. Now come, we should pick up your training where we left off.'

Sylera nodded, grasped Sandrielle's offered hand, and rose.


'Noble captain Roucellis and his Sebiestor prodigy.' the tall, powerfully built Brutor exclaimed with open arms and a broad smile on his tattooed face. 'Where did you leave that stinking Amarr pirate dog of yours?' he asked while he approached the visitors from the elevator door of his ship's bridge. Two stern-faced, armored women carrying heavy projectile rifles flanked him.

'Oh, right now he is sitting out there, cloaked, waiting for my signal to destroy your ship, Arrakh.' Cedrien answered flippantly and gestured at the wide bridge windows of the Loki they had boarded for a rendezvous in an unsettled wormhole system.

Arrakh burst out in laughter and hugged the much smaller Gallente man with such force that he gasped for air. 'It is good to see you again Cedrien.' the Brutor captain playfully punched the other man's shoulder to underscore his words.

'Come, let me serve you and your girl some spiced wine.' he offered and lead them to the sliding door of the captain's ready-room. The bridge crew and Arrakh's swarthy personal guards relaxed noticeably.

'She is not my girl .' Cedrien clarified as he fell into step beside the dark-skinned Matari, trying to match the large man's long strides.

'Still not?!' Arrakh shook his long, braided mane of black hair. 'What kind of Minmatar woman are you to not lay a claim on a man like this?' he berated Alira.

The Sebiestor pilot cringed with embarrassement and remained silent as they stepped into the captain's room furnished in traditional Minmatar tribal style. Martial trophies and clan artwork adorned the walls. The center of the room was dominated by opulent cushions arranged in a circle around a low table laden with fruit and cold roast. The small chamber did not look lived-in. As a capsuleer, Arrakh would rarely have use for it except for occasions like this.

Arrakh offered them a place before he sat himself and uncorked a bottle of dark spicewine that had waited there along with the food. He waved his guards away and they left to wait outside after a curt nod of acknowledgement. 

'Please eat.' he offered. 'Spending your life in dreary space stations and in capsule fluid offers so few pleasures as it is.'

Cedrien almost wanted to decline politely, but a direct look from their host silenced him before he opened his mouth. Alira, obviously familiar with the customs of Matari hospitality, took one of the succulent fruits after a short, thankful nod.

'So I heard a rumour you recently kicked the Janissary Order out of your home-system.' the Brutor began while he filled the metal drinking cups of his guests.

'We got lucky, and it cost us dearly.' Cedrien replied humbly between two bites.

'You know, if you would join with us, nobody would dare to attack you.' Arrakh looked at the Gallente capsuleer earnestly from under his bushy eyebrows while filling his own cup.

'If we would join with you, that would also put us at war with Rift Arrangements.' Alira remarked with a quick smile and took a swig of wine.

Arrakh waved a finger at the redhead after taking a deep gulp of his own. 'Sharp girl.' he grinned. 'You wouldn't have to worry about them. They are busy making fortresses of their wormhole systems where they can hide from us behind their stations' shields.' His tone turned more earnest. 'Trouble is coming, and it's coming for you. You should look for allies while you can.'

'What are you talking about?' Cedrien wondered and inclined his head quizzically.

Arrakh emptied his cup and put it down. 'One of our scout groups ran into a large fleet of Scions.' he began. 'They sent two of my capsuleers back to their clones in Empire Space and wiped out four ships with baseline crews.' he looked at his two guests significantly 'The one ship that got away reported that the Scions told them they are lead by a prophet. A prophet who is looking for a white haired angel. Sort of sounded like that Amarr girl you took under your wing last year.'

Alira's eyes widened and she turned to look at Cedrien. 'Sylera?' she wondered.

Cedrien put the drink down and rested his forehead in his palm, slowly shaking his head.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I like the way where this is going. Or where I think it could be going....