The Bear!

This scene was insane fun to write!

**

Alexander ducked into a room with Raven close behind him.  Then, he slammed the door shut.  He had just enough time to get out of the way before Raven shoved a table up against the door.  “Oh, my God,” he breathed, as a crash reverberated outside the door.  He looked at Raven and shook his head.  “It just doesn’t quit!”

Raven gave a nervous laugh and then screamed when the door shook with the force of the thing outside attacking.  “Go away,” she screamed.

Giving a weak chuckle, Alexander said, “Go away?  Is that all you’ve got?”  The beast outside let out a vicious roar and he looked around for some kind of weapon.  “Never mind,” he added, as she began piling more furnishings against the door.

“Al?  Raven?” a voice said.  It took Alexander a moment to realize that the call was coming from his wrist-comm.

Tensing, he hit the button.  As before, it chirped twice and then fell silent.  “Are you kidding me?” he rasped.  He tugged the wrist-comm free and slapped it on the table.  Then, he hit the button again.  “Kit,” he cried when the wrist-comm made the single chirp that indicated it had opened a comm-line between them.

“Al?” Kit said, sounding surprised.  “Where are you and Raven?  What’s your status?  Why haven’t you answered?”

“The stupid wrist-comm clearly wanted a bear to eat us,” Alexander said, when the door shook under another attack from the beast outside.  He glanced around and then heaved a sigh.  “We’ve locked ourselves in a room – the record’s room, by the looks of it.  There’s a vicious bear outside – in the corridor, that is.”

“Are either of you hurt?” Calleigh asked.  She sounded a bit out of breath.  Obviously, they were running to get to the town hall.

“We’re fine,” Raven said, shaking her head.  She gave a weak laugh when the door cracked under the constant onslaught from the bear.  An enormous paw reached through the crack and flailed around for a moment as the bear tried to reach them.  As the paw withdrew, Raven said, “Go away!”

“We’ll be there in a few,” Kit said, his tone strained.

Alexander heaved a sigh of relief.  “Our weapons don’t seem to work on it,” he warned them.  “I don’t know what the bears on Anchorage have been eating, but they shake off our lightning guns like they’re nothing more than a bee sting.”

“Hurry,” Raven said, as the bear reached in and grabbed the door, trying to break the opening wider.  She grabbed a ruler off the wall where it was hanging and struck the beast in the paw.  It roared and pulled away.  When its face appeared in the opening, Raven poked it in the eye.  That time, it pulled away with a cry of pain.

“He’s huge,” Matthew cried from outside the room.  This was followed by the sound of several shots from their lightning guns.

Alexander rolled his eyes.  “Yeah, those don’t work so well,” he called.  He looked at Raven and shook his head.  “I’m fairly sure that I mentioned that.”

“You did,” she grimaced. Shouting through the opened, she said, “Don’t die on us, guys!  Once it finishes with you, it’ll come after us again.”

“Actually, this might be our chance to escape,” Alexander said, shrugging.  “When there’s a bear chasing you, you don’t have to outrun the bear, after all.”

“Right, just the people with you,” she finished smirking.

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Real Aliens…

A scene from my NaNo.  I really like writing these characters…

**

Kirei was on duty when they reached the planet that was called Oceano.  One look at it told her why it had such a name.  There were small landmasses, but most of the surface was covered with water.  The first thing that she did was attempt to make contact with the colony.  Her first hails went unanswered.  However, after trying different channels for half an hour, she got a response.  The only problem was: she didn’t understand what the person was saying.  Her brows furrowed.

Turning away from the comm, she looked over towards the captain’s chair.  At that moment, the captain was in his study.  Calleigh was sitting in the chair, reading something off a datapad.  “Commander Skyler,” Kirei said, her ears flicking back.  When the woman looked up, Kirei heaved a sigh.

“You got a response, Ensign Firetail?” she asked, moving to her feet.

Kirei nodded.  “A response, yes,” she said.  Then she shook her head.  “The problem is, I can’t understand a word they’re saying and I’m not finding any of the phrases in our language database.”

Calleigh hummed thoughtfully and stepped over to the comm.  She took the earpiece and closed her eyes.  After a moment, she shook her head.  She turned to Kirei and nodded.  “Tell them who we are and that we’re sending a team down.  Even if we can’t understand them, there’s a chance they can understand us.”

“Yes, ma’am,” Kirei said, nodding.

Touching the internal comm on her wrist, Calleigh said, “Captain…” she trailed off when the device chirped.  She was about to touch the comm again when the Captain entered from his study.

“Did you need me?” he asked, tilting his head to one side.

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The Only Thing to Fear

Here’s a nice little vignette with the prompt of: write about a fear your character is ashamed of.

**

“You could go up and get a birds-eye view, so to speak,” Kit suggested.

Calleigh looked sharply at Kit.  “It’s dark,” she said, her voice strained.  She flushed when Kit regarded her with a curious expression.  In a soft voice, one she could barely hear herself, she said, “I don’t fly at night, Kit.  I could damage my wings.”

“It’s not that dark, Calleigh,” he said.  His tone was gentle and reasonable.  He was also absolutely correct.  It wasn’t so dark that she risked flying into anything.  She couldn’t think of any other excuse for not doing exactly what Kit had suggested.

“I could do a spell,” Alexander offered, looking from one to the other.  He smiled at Kit.  “Commander Skyler would see further with a bit more light.  Wouldn’t she, Captain?”

“Yes,” Calleigh said, nodding.  She gave Alexander a weak smile.  “Thank you,” she said, her voice soft.

“Do the spell, Al,” Kit said, nodding once.

Alexander wove the lighting spell and the area where they were – where Calleigh would need to fly – brightened noticeably.  A moment later, Calleigh flew up and got their bearings.  After she’d landed and the spell began to fade, they set off once again.

Alexander let Kit a bit ahead of them and then smiled faintly at Calleigh.  “I’m afraid of the dark too,” he murmured.  Then, he shrugged.  “It’s less frightening when you aren’t alone.”

A faint smile touched Calleigh’s lips.  Taking his hand, she said, “Your secret’s safe with me, Al.”  She knew that he’d keep her secret as well.

Applying Percussive Maintainance

I’d actually written this earlier in the month, bit it fit the prompt so well: Write about your character’s most terrifying experience so far.

**

Gretchen growled softly as the ship suddenly slowed to impulse speed.  Somewhere, there was a chirp and she heard the captain’s voice.  “Commander Neary, we’re going to be in worse trouble if we go at this snail’s pace and they catch us.”

“I know that,” she grumbled.  Then, she hit the comm button and said, “I’m doing the best I can, Captain.”  Grabbing her wrench, she released the button and struck the engine housing with all her might.  “Run, you piece of shit,” she snapped.  There was a hum as the starlight engines kicked back in and Gretchen nearly fell over when the ship lurched up to starlight speed once again.

Tossing the wrench to one side, Gretchen heaved a sigh of relief.  They weren’t out of the woods yet, but at least they wouldn’t get caught because the damn ship was creeping along at impulse speed.

 

On the bridge, Kit gave Calleigh a tight smile.  “So,” he said, “we both know those pirates aren’t going to leave us alone just because we’re cruising along at maximum speed.  They’re ship is faster than Hannah.  Give me options, Commander Skyler.”

“We could come about and blast them to kingdom come,” Ken quipped.

Kit looked over at him and nodded.  “We could.  If we had more than two torpedoes left and a better chance at actually making a hit on them, that would be a better course of action than running.”

“What if we increased those odds?” Calleigh said, her eyes twinkling.

A frown touched Kit’s lips.  “Listening,” he said, nodding.

“Come about and run at them,” Calleigh said, grinning.  She shrugged and said, “We can’t miss, even with our weapons’ guidance system down, if we get close enough.”

“They’d certainly never expect it,” David said.  He didn’t sound pleased with the idea, but he wasn’t protesting it as insane either.  That was a good sign.

Kit nodded.  He pressed the comm button to hail the entire crew.  “All stations, prepare to come about on my mark,” he said.  He looked at George and added, “You know what we’re doing.  Lay in the course.”

“Aye, sir,” George said.  His fingers flew over the buttons and after a moment, he nodded.  “Course laid in, sir.  Ready on your mark.”

Kit took a steadying breath and then touched the comm button once again.  “Mark,” he said.  He bit his lip as the ship spun around and then flew back the way they had come.  He looked over at Ken.  “As near as you dare, Commander Holmes,” he said.

“Aye, sir,” Ken said, his brows furrowing.  He had his gaze locked on the screen that showed him the pursuing pirate ships.  Then, he keyed the torpedo button.  “Firing one,” he said.  He nodded.  “Direct hit on closer pirate ship.”  He hit the other button and said, “Firing two.”  His brows twitched when nothing happened.  He slapped the console and hit the button a second time.  This time, the second torpedo fired.

Their ship rocked with the percussive force of the second ship exploding.  Then, it fell quiet and Kit relaxed in his seat.  “All hands, assess damage in your areas.  Any wounded, go to sickbay.  Commander Neary, start repairing systems by priority.”

“That was insane,” David breathed.

Calleigh chuckled softly.  “There’s no denying that it worked, though,” she said.  She got to her feet and smiled at Kit.  “I’m going to check and make certain everyone got through our adventure in one piece.”

Kit heaved a sigh and nodded.  “I’ve got to message Starbright Station and let them know about the pirates in this sector,” he said.  As he got to his feet, he said, “Commander Holmes, you have the bridge.”

He vanished into his ready room and sank into the chair at the desk.  He glanced over at the photograph on the wall.  “That was just a bit scary,” he said, his voice soft.  Pirates, if they’d taken the ship, would have killed him and all the men on board.  The woman, like Calleigh and Gretchen… he didn’t even want to think about it.

“The devil’s own luck,” he said, still looking at the portrait.  “Isn’t that what you used to call it, Sarah?”  He heaved a sigh and reached into his desk to retrieve a bottle of whiskey.  He poured just a bit into a glass and raised it to the portrait.  “To luck,” he said.  Then, he tossed the drink back.  After he’d tucked the bottle and glass out of sight, he began composing a message to his superiors in the Confederation.

Who’s asking?

Calleigh watched Julian with a slight frown on her face. Few in the crew knew that there were agents on board. From the way Julian watched Ophelia, she had to wonder if he was the exception. If he was, what had given them away?

“Why did you decide to stay on board?” she asked, keeping her tone casual.

Julian gave her a sly smile. “Who’s asking?” he said, his voice soft. “Commander Skyler or Agent Skyler?”

“How’d you know?” Calleigh asked, not answering his question. After all, he hadn’t answered hers.

Chuckling, Julian said, “It takes one to know one.”

Now we’re wearing the same jeans

“We’re dressed alike,” Alexander said, looking from his outfit to the one that Ravin was wearing. He tilted his head to one side. “Same tunic – same slacks, but yours fit you differently.”

Ravin shrugged. “It’s a uniform,” she said. “Everyone on the ship – well, everyone in the crew, at least – is wearing the same outfit.”

“No,” Alexander said, shaking his head. His brows furrowed. “The tunics change, just the slacks stay the same.”

Kit nodded. “The tunics show what part of the ship you work in,” he said. “Since you both work on the bridge, your uniforms are exactly the same.” He smiled and glanced over at Calleigh. “Nice, now that everyone is in uniform.”

“Absolutely,” Calleigh agreed.