Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Dieing to Live - Pt 4

Selina rolled her eyes and sighed deeply. So tired was she of all this blah blah this and blah blah that. She swore that if the person still lived who came up with the idea of these long, boring graduation ceremonies, she would shoot them as soon as she got free and back in her ship. She glanced again at her Neo-pad, looking over the agent information shown on it. It was her first agent and she couldn't help being just a tad excited about it. Her first agent and her first step towards making a name for herself. Plus it meant real work, real targets, rather than flying around shooting unmanned scrap heaps they called training vessels.

As soon as the so-called, ceremonial terms “class dismissed” was given, she was off to the hanger like she was being chased by a dozen blaster yielding cartel. While most lingered in the auditorium, hugging their families and friends, bathing in the limelight of being the most recent graduates of the Academy, Selina was quickly stripping and hopping into the warm goo of her pod, the hanger crew having already prepped the ship for launch. Even before receiving confirmation to undock, she was already on her way out, the control tower basically cursing at her over the comm’s for being so impatient.

Miranda, the name she gave her ship’s on-board computer, inquired as they exited the station if they were to head towards the Isikemi system to meet up with her agent. Instead Selina smiled and shook her head. “No Miranda. We have some other business to attend to first…”

“And what would that be Miss Selina?”

“Set a course for the State War Academy in the Hageken system. We have somebody there I need to speak with first.”

“As you wish,” the computer responded. In a mere second the course popped up on Selina’s HUD and after selecting the first stargate en route shown on her overview, she engaged the warp drive, more than ready to leave the Academy she’d spent so many months in behind her.

Fidgeting a bit in the booth where she sat at the predetermined cafĂ©, Selina waited for her acquaintance with as much patience as she could muster. She’d never met this man face to face before but he was referred to her by ‘a friend of a friend of a friend.’ Bunch of rubbish she knew but he was known to be good at what he did and charged considerably less than most agents like him. However, he was already nearly 45 minutes late and her patience was growing thin.

After waiting yet another 15 minutes, she was finally fed up and was just about to stand and leave when out of nowhere, a man appeared at the table, plopping himself ungracefully into the seat across from her.

“G’day beautiful,” he said with a smug grin. “Needin some company this evening?”

Selina narrowed her eyes at him. With her patience already run thin from having waited for her no-show guest, she had even less for some sex-starved moron hitting on her. “No. I’m not. Now piss off.”

Aww…now that’s not a nice way to talk to a man who just might have something you want.” Leaning back he gave her an overly zealous wink.

Smirking now, Selina stood and leaned towards the man. “The only thing I’d want from you is to either leave…or die.”

At this the man grinned as he reached into his jacket pocket. Selina, thinking him to perhaps be pulling a weapon, was just about to spring upon him, ready to pummel him to a bloody pulp when he withdrew his hand holding a small data card. “You sure that’s the only thing?”

Stopping herself from killing him anyways just for making her wait so long, she plopped herself back into the seat across from him. “You’re late.”

“Nay, I've been here long before even you arrived.” He leans towards her, his voice lowering. “You can understand that in my business, you can never be too careful. I've been tracking you since you first arrived in system. Had to make sure you were legit and not some damn cop.”

She smirked at him and leaned towards him as well. “Well I’m not…now is that what I want,” she asks, pointing to the card in his hand.

“Aye, it is. I've managed to have your man scheduled to be relocated to another system. No questions about how or why. That’s my business. Inscribed in this data card is the times and route to be used during this transfer. What you do with that information is your business.”

“And the individuals I requested?”

He grinned. “Young thugs from a local planet near the station where you’ll be pickin them up. No attachments Cheap. Just as you requested. You can pick them up at the time also given on the card. You just dock at the given station and they’ll be there waiting for you. Given prior agreement, once they are aboard, you will have their services for 24 hours. Should be all the time you need. Any more after that and it’ll cost you extra. Either way, they’ll get the job done.”

She nodded before reaching to the take the card. Immediately he snapped his hand away. “I do believe we had an agreement,” he stated, his eyes narrowing at her.

Selina smirked, rolled her hand and produced a credit chip. “40K, as agreed,” she said, dropping it on the table between them before snapping her arm out and snatching the data chip from him.

The man smiled, took the credit chip and stood. “Well then, seems our business is done here. So as you pilots like to say, fly safe,” he said, tipping his non-existent hat before heading for the exit.

She didn't even watch him leave. Instead she sat for a long moment, her eyes glued to the data chip as if it were some awe inspiring trinket. Slowly, a sly grin began to form at the corners of her lips, her mind playing out the planned events once more in her head. “Not much longer now….not much longer….” She softly mumbled to herself before standing and making her own way to the exit.