Sunday, August 7, 2011

Briar Patch - Part 1.

Set against the back drop of silent stars and empty space, light glinted along the hull of the Othinn as if it was the rippling of gentle waves. There was no mistaking it's presence as it glided through the void. No one could misinterpret it's intent or it's purpose. Like the motto of it's crew, the Othinn was every bit the embodiment of "the spear's tip." And like the tip of a spear, the Othinn is more than just a weapon, and therein lies it's strength.

Lost in a torrent of thought and memory, Lance Corporal Warren Blake reclined in his quarters, officers manual in hand. Recollection paraded his career before his mind's-eye, highlighting every past opportunity for advancement as he passed in shadow. Not once had he ever even managed to stand out as anything more or less than average. 

"Oh, what am I thinking," Blake sighed. "I'm not cut out to lead anyone," he informed himself as if quoting from an official performance evaluation. To reinforce the point he reminded himself that with a promotion came some measure of spotlight; responsibility he could handle, standing in the spotlight had always terrified him.  Taking an order he could handle, without question, it was giving them that was an issue. More to the point, it was the idea that he was worth obeying.

As Warren Blake contemplated his own self worth, a simple flick of the wrist sent the manual from his hand to come to rest with a thud upon the floor. Unknown to anyone a similar thud was mirrored elsewhere on the ship, an event that fate alone marked, as a stack of papers were dropped beside Captain Jason Taggert. A grim figure in his own right, Taggert was a veteran of both the Rim Wars and the expedition to seek out the Vel-Teh. His gaze never wavered as he studied not the various screens and displays of data, but instead the view of space outside his ship.

Nervously, a mousey voice broke the quiet of the moment: "new orders from fleet, sir." Taggert could almost feel a sense of omen in the words, a slight shift in the tides as it were. With closed eyes and a silent prayer upon his lips, Captain Taggert turned his gaze to the waiting orders. "Very well then, let's see what awaits us this time."