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Petty Officer

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Playtime: 236h

Beiträge: 277
Wohnort: the Netherlands

Beitrag Titel: Like the Shadows
Verfasst am: 22.07.08 20:25
Antworten mit ZitatNach oben

As he was sitting in the cockpit of his trusty Dromedary, time passed by ever so slowly. The rusty ship wasn't really a technology marvel, but it fulfilled its task the way it was expected to do. The details didn't matter. The poor old ship had been battered and dented like a tin can. Paint was peeling off and the hull bore scratches of 'near' collisions with other traffic and stations. Those people just didn't understand the difficulty in moving this sluggish ship from point A to point B. Yet there was something special about this ship - a reason not to restore it other than simple laziness. The starboard of the ship bore scorch marks of rifle fire.

As the ship entered the California system he engaged his autopilot as he closed his eyes to recall that fateful day his shiny new Dromedary was stained.

It was months ago, but he remembered it well. It was the day the once so solid ruling of the Borderworlds came to an end. Ever since that day few freighter pilots dared to enter the squiggly twisting politically dead space called the Borderworlds. He was not one of them.

It was somewhere in mid-August last year on Freeport 9. As he had finished his last few shipping assignments, it was time to celebrate at the bar. His work had paid off and he had recently bought a brand new Dromedary freighter, enabling him to carry out even more profitable jobs. He had been bragging about it for days. This day was no different. Then the delegations rushed in.

The bar went silent as the two groups walked in. These guys clearly weren't coming for drinks. Silently people decided it was best for them to leave rather than to find out what was going on. Yet surely he wasn't going to let this evening be ruined by some goons who had some silly difference to settle. He silently sat down and decided to discretely watch this strange summoning. The badges told most of the story. The unter Schwarzer Flagge clan had been notoriously claiming Omicron Alpha for some time now, actively chasing those who entered for tax money. That system had turned into some sort of coil; few daring people entered, even fewer ever left. On the other side were the people from the Sirius Terror Elite, a rapidly growing organisation that had only recently grown with the addition of the Goblins and the Outcasts. Some said they had even swallowed minor terrorist cells throughout Sirius. Both clans had a history of conflicts, most partially solved by the intervention of other pirate clans to maintain stability against the thriving military show of force in Omicron Gamma presented by the military organization of the Order of Elite Gamers and their friends. Yet this pirate bond was fragile. In any case, these people were best to be left alone, but he know there was no turning back now.

He watched through the corner of his eyes as the diplomats started their talks. No shaking hands, just straight to business.
"The deal's off, it has been long enough", the uSF Diplomat bluntly stated. "Unless..."
"Unless what?"
"Unless you pay the money we demanded before this ridiculous deal came into place."
The STE Diplomat chuckled.
"We're supposed to pay you?"
"You're no true pirates, you're amateurs. Pay up. It's the best thing for your precious Coalition."
Eyes burned of rage.
"We will never and I repeat, never, pay uSF. If it's war you want, this talk's over."
The STE delegation turned and walked towards the exit doors from which they came. The uSF Diplomat grabbed for something from his equipment.
"War has no boundaries, as you will soon learn", he hissed while lifting his blaster.

The freighter pilot finally turned his head in shock of the situation at hand. he wanted to warn the STE delegation, momentarily forgetting they were no less lawless than uSF. He never got that far.

From the distance there was a gunshot and the uSF diplomat fell on the floor. The shooter quickly got up and threw a table on its side for cover. The STE delegation armed themselves as did the remaining uSF members. Backup was called and the entire situation grew out to a massive gunfight with both sides taking rapid casualties. The freighter pilot cowardly hid behind the bar and crawled for the exit doors, leaving the shouting of this fresh war behind him. He knew this would soon reach the news and entire fleets would fill the space around Freeport 9.

He ran for his life towards the docking bays, only to find people chasing him down the narrow corridors of the station. With his heart pounding he boarded his shiny ship and started the engines. He cursed the time it took to start these freighters, but he knew once they were moving there was no stopping them. As gunfire hit the starboard side of his ship, he cursed and put the engines to full throttle, thereby scraping the hangar walls causing even more damage.

It didn't matter to him, he escaped, barely. He had been lucky, that was for sure. The entire thing had been filled with shadows - people silently waiting for first blood. Neither of the groups ever had the faintest hope this would pass without some sort of violence.

As he opened his eyes again, he was relieved to be in such a safe system. Never again would he decide to return to those treacherous systems. At least here things were clear. Governments surely had things under control.

The dromedary slowly manoeuvred itself through space, till all of a sudden something slowly became visible next to the small freighter.

"This is Battleship Arrakis of the Pirate Coalition. You know the drill."

The freighter pilot sighed.
Bloody hell...
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