Interlude on Sihnon

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Ship's Pilot

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Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:26 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

McNally drifted in a semi-dream, warm and dark, as though he were lying in his bunk aboard the Robert MacKenzie. The old hauler always had a problem with her thermal couplers and the life support environmental controls couldn’t cope with the backwash from the engines giving the huge ship a tropical climate. He thought to open his eyes, but a strange pressure kept them closed and he tried to relax. It was difficult, though. There was a niggling ache in his side and he couldn’t quite get comfortable... but it was warm and dark, deep down in the bunk-spaces, away from all the noise and activity, away from the tortured screams and the gasping breaths, away from the pain of a dozen needles buried deep in his back and shoulders.

He came to with a jolt as Chang Li’s physician delivered another dose of stimulant to him, searing pain bathing his brain. He had tried to get loose, but she had described the actions of the drug she had administered with a kiss, a muscle relaxant and soporiphic that dulled his fine motor control. Until the administration of the neural stimulant he had been barely able to speak, but he was left weakened and unable to slip from the metal bands and ropes that secured him to the frame.

Li, having changed into a white medical smock and wearing surgical gloves, had taken great pleasure in carefully slicing is shirt and vest from his back, while explaining her expertise in acupuncture, although, as she brought out the first needle, he recognised it was much longer than and not as fine as a real acupuncture needle. He roared and shuddered as she inserted the first one, targeting a pressure-point on his lower back, but he couldn’t escape the white agony. Another needle followed... and another and another until ten inch-long prongs jutted from his back in two neat rows each side of his spine. The insertion of the last two, high up into the muscle of his shoulder, angled down and probing deeper, made him howl like a wounded animal and pushed him close to his first collapse.

A small dose of stimulant later and he was fully aware again as she attached fine wires to each needle and sat on a stool next to his head, a console mounted on a trolley to her side. ‘Now, let’s see if I have your undivided attention,’ she remarked brightly as she activated the console and turned a dial a quarter. All twelve needles pulsed with a micro-current, nowhere near enough to cause any damage, but more than ample to bring a whole new meaning to the word ‘pain’.

He had been shot, stabbed, beaten, had bones broken, suffered internal bleeding, but nothing felt as purely agonising as the precisely targeted electricity deep into nerve bundles. He screamed himself hoarse as she twitched the dial several times, pausing at length to allow him to breathe before beginning again, each series of nerve-shredding pulses meticulously time so that he didn’t succumb to unconsciousness too quickly. Even then, his own resolve and determination made him fight, time and again, not willing to give her the satisfaction of breaking him.

‘Is she worth all this torment, McNally shian shen?’ Li asked, raising his head as he gulped air, her frown hardening when he said nothing. She let his head drop and dialled up the current half-way, sending him into paroxysms, gripped by a neural seizure that went on for thirty seconds. His weakened muscles flexed and contracted as he strained against the bonds, eyes rolled back while froth caked his lips and blood trickled from his nose.

‘Hu li jing,’ he raged when she dialled the current down and the pain subsided. ‘Hai bu goh! Hai bu goh!’

‘Not enough?’ she snarled, hauling his head up once more. ‘Not enough? You mock me, you mei yong ma duh tse gu yong.’ She wound the dial three quarters, bringing the torture to a new level. ‘Ta ma duh.’

Mind-bending agonies seared through his body and consciousness finally began to fade, the pain overwhelming the stimulant in his system, like tunnel-vision from a high-g turn. He strained, in spite of himself, to keep conscious, to force her to choose, kill him or cut him loose. Either way he knew he would win.

This time she showed no mercy, leaving the current live for over a minute until his head slumped and his raw throat rasped with ragged breaths. Her physician dared then to place a hand on her shoulder, her dagger-glare forcing him to retreat before she realised what he meant and turned the dial down. ‘Bring him around again,’ she muttered.

Her physician was wringing his hands. ‘I, erm... I don’t think that is a good idea,’ he said softly, his head bowed. ‘His blood pressure is already high and another dose may cause a cerebral or pulmonary edema... it could kill him.’

‘Another dose of stimulant,’ she growled. ‘Or your precious wife and daughters will be on the skin market before the sun rises.’

The man paled and quickly took up a syringe, hands shaking as he prepared another stimulant injection. He pressed the needle into McNally’s neck and eased the plunger part way in, his other hand feeling for a pulse. Before the whole amount was injected, McNally flinched slightly and the physician withdrew the syringe. ‘There,’ he said, stepping back.

Li pushed the physician away and knelt before McNally, lifting his head up. ‘I don’t want to kill you,’ she said, her voice silken. ‘But you are impossible, you’ll go through all this for that girl, why? Answer me, why?’

McNally’s eyes could barely focus, blood pounding in his head, his heart hammering and his extremities tingling. ‘You... w-wanna... know... w-w-why?’ he croaked.

Li was suddenly on the verge of tears. ‘I want to know why an outlaw like you shows such devotion to a girl like her, born of wealth and education, probably from a family with more influence than she realises. She’s not your lover, your wife or your daughter, and she doesn’t belong in the black... still you’ll give your life to protect hers.’

McNally smiled through all the pain still buzzing in his body and inclined his head so she had to lean in closer as his voice became a low whisper.

Li listened, her eyes half-closed... and a single tear crept down her cheek. She stayed, knelt before him, for several minutes, listening to his laboured breathing and groans of pain, as she fought to control the turmoil of emotions, finally reaching a decision. She reached her feet and turned to her physician. ‘I'm finished with him,’ she whispered, her throat tight. As the startled man prepared a different drug she turned to one of her enforcers carrying a handheld camera, gazing into the lens and making a cut-throat gesture.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’

kid

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Kid was next to the wave terminal when the message came in. She told herself she hhadn't been waiting for it. That this had been the easiest place to get the crossfeed panel ssorted. It wasn't true. As time had stretched on, she'd known the message was more certain.
All the message had was an address or rather coordinates and initials. It seemed that honour held firm. That or fear. She briefly contemplated rousing the entire ship, but stopped herself. If this went the way it was looking to go, she didn't want to have to face them all afterwards. Her gun was at her hip, she had at least three knives and her giant wrench. She grabbed her face mask as she slipped through the cargo bay and wheeled the mule down the ramp. No point waking anyone that didn't need it.
Nah, ship didn't need those parts anyway...
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Character name: William Burton

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:27 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Burton was whistling to himself cheerily as he restocked the shelves and cupboards in the infirmary and wondered how long it would be till Alisha decided to reorganise it.
It really bugged him that she kept moving things around, so far it had been a mild annoyance, he hoped that if he did have an emergency on his hands he'd be able to find the things he needed quickly. Part of him felt like telling her that but had always relented as when she was "organising" she wasn't drinking.
I hate flying!
This one's got no pulse. -Next!

kid

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:28 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

As she kicked the mule into life and roared away, Kid pulled up her mask. Her ship insignia was in her toolkit back on the Roisin. Nothing to lead anyone home. Strangely, she didn’t find herself questioning her decision to stay on board the ship. If she’d left when she’d meant to, she wouldn’t be doing this, but then this crew weren’t just welcoming, they were…accepting.

She pulled the mule up a short distance from the target in a side alley, facing back towards the ship. No point making it harder than needed to get away. She reached under the dash and pulled out a small segment which she dumped in a coat pocket. No point in making it easier than needed for anyone else to take it away either. The buildings had the air of something that had been thrown up in a hurry for temporary use and then were somehow still standing decades later, with ever newer structures crowding into even the smallest spaces left behind. Grabbing her bag from the seat, Kid made her way forward slowly and quietly, slipping from shadow to shadow. It had been months since she’d had to move like this, and she was clumsy by her own standards. If she’d been hunting in the woods, she wouldn’t have caught a thing, but even a quiet section of a city is loud by comparison.

In an alley alongside the warehouse, Kid found a couple of mules. They had a guard, but he was standing at the far end of the alley, chatting and laughing with two people she couldn’t see round the front of the building. It was the work of seconds to slip up behind the mules and find a couple of places to stash her devices. Then she moved quietly back down the alley away from the guard. A quick glance around the back of the building identified a handy-looking window, as well as an interesting-looking mains electronics box at the base of the rear wall. Her final device got tucked in alongside the box. It was easy enough to scale the building behind and work her way across. The latch on the window was almost laughable. It was almost like they hadn’t expected anyone to crouch on the three inch wide sill twenty foot in the air with a thin metal shim. She eased the window open using the sounds coming from inside as cover, while trying not to concentrate too hard on what those sounds actually were. She lowered herself carefully onto the wooden gantry inside the building and, keeping low and as out of the light as possible, peered over the edge into the cavernous room below.
Nah, ship didn't need those parts anyway...
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Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:28 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Regan scowled at the screen. ‘Damn it, Thorner, I figured if anyone could give me a gorram option you would!’

Thorner’s eyes closed. ‘Regan, I already told you! The Chang and the Gong are working together. The Feds are frozen and the Old City has plenty of security. Sure they’ll let you in... only they won’t let you out. If the Dragon Lady’s got you friend, you’ll probably get him back in lots of little bags.’

Regan shook his head. ‘Thanks for nothing, ol’ buddy!’

‘Listen, Regan, Sihnon may be a core world, but the Triad culture is ingrained. Even the Alliance authorities accept it. They Triads help keep the peace. If you start a war, there’s no telling what’s gonna happen. ‘If he’s not killed she might hand him back for a price, but you’ll have to go to her and ask... I’ll send you the location of the Mama Chang’s bar, but that’s all I can do. And if you go in there gun ablazing, expect a bloodbath.’ He shook his head. ‘Seriously, man, is this McNally character worth it?’

Regan chuckled coldly. ‘He’s a decent pilot and useful in a fight, someone I know I can count on in a pinch.’ His eyes narrowed. ‘You used to be that guy.’

‘Things change,’ Thorner remarked.

Regan shook his head. ‘They do,’ he muttered. ‘So long.’ He cancelled the wave before Thorner could reply and turned to the tall, imposing figure in the doorway.

‘The young mechanic has taken the mule,’ Tobias said softly.

Regan raised his hands to the sky. ‘Kid? Gorram, when are this crew gonna learn safety in numbers. Get Hopscotch over here, I’ll rouse the others.’ He pushed past Tobias and headed for the mess deck.

‘Where to?’ Tobias asked. ‘I take it only have a vague location for Mr McNally.’

Regan turned to reply but realised he didn’t have a good answer. ‘We’ll just go and take a look around. If we find our mule we find Kid and I reckon we find McNally.’

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Kid watched as an Oriental beauty in a stylised nurses outfit tortured McNally, pausing to allow a man in an authentic medical smock to inject some form of stimulant, reviving McNally so the torment could continue. So she was a real sadist, Kid thought, seeing a man to one side holding a camera. She was having the torture recorded so she could relive it later? Nice to know McNally hung out with wholesome characters like her. The time would soon come to act and, in a moment’s consideration of the gantry, Kid had several options down without being detected and she couldn’t help but feel a small swell of pride that she had got so close. She prepared to move, only at the last moment feeling the fine mesh overlaid on the gantry walkway. She barely had time to mouth a profanity when her body was convulsed with a sharp jolt of current. She tried to claw for her remote, but she realised as another jolt pulsed through her they had let her get that far... in spite of their fear of her, they had not underestimated her.

She collapsed onto her side as a third pulse threatened her continuing consciousness, her eyes finding the small red light above her, a sensor, one of probably a dozen set over the crawl spaces.

Below her Fung glanced up as he heard the trap-device go off and nodded to two of his men to take a look while Mama Chang was occupied with McNally.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Lock, Chai, Marshal and Regan were finally ready, weapons concealed. As Tobias and Hopscotch approached from the Roisin Fuil Regan drew them together. ‘We’re just going to take a look. Kid’s taken it on herself to go after McNally on her own so I figure we find her, we’ll find what we’re looking for.’

‘And then what?’ asked Lock.

Tobias smiled slightly. ‘We discover if Mr McNally wants rescuing,’ he said.

Regan shrugged. ‘We see if he’s still breathing and get his fat out of the fire.’

Alisha appeared suddenly, without her white coat but wearing her new gun and holster... the one McNally had purchased for her from that woman. Now she intended to... do what exactly.

Regan looked down at her. ‘So you’re comin’?’ he asked.

‘Don’t try to stop me,’

Regan shook his head slowly. ‘You’re sounding more like McNally all the time.’

Alisha shrugged nervously. ‘What’s the plan?’

‘The Old City’s crawling with Triad enforcers and so we haven’t got a solid fix on his location, but that’s where Kid’s headed with the mule. Find it, find her and find McNally, then deal with whatever we have to in our own fashion. Then we come back here for milk’n’cookies!’

Alisha eased the revolver from her holster and rolled the drum slowly. ‘If that woman is there...’ Her voice trailed off as she countenanced taking another life.

‘She’ll be there,’ Regan finished. ‘We’ll impress upon her how useful McNally is to us and how expensive it would be for her if I had to replace him.’ He meant is as a gallows-joke but saw Alisha’s eyes flicker with emotion.

Alisha forced a nod, not wanting to think about the condition McNally might be in... and that it might be too late.

Poppy suddenly appeared from the ship. ‘Alisha, you’ve got a wave... from ‘Mama Chang’?’

Alisha exchanged glances with Regan and then she stormed back onto the Roisin Dubh, almost running to the console on the flight deck. She activated the screen and accessed her personal comms profile, the wave symbol flashing steadily. She sensed people behind her but ignored them. That woman couldn’t expect her not to share this with the crew, not when it involved McNally. She finally accessed the wave and Chang Li’s beautiful face appeared.

‘Hello, Dr Corbon,’ the woman said, the view panning back to reveal her regaled as some fetishistic nurse. ‘I trust you’re sitting comfortably.’ She then proceeded to walk across the view, the camera following her to a metal and wood frame. Bound across it, stripped to the waist, was McNally, a series of needles embedded in his back and shoulders. Li moved to a console on a trolley and turned a dial.

McNally’s screams suddenly filled the deck, making Alisha jolt as tears spilled from her eyes.

‘Poppy, Chai, trace this, NOW!’ bellowed Regan. ‘This bitch has made her last mistake.’

Poppy was shaking and Chai swallowed hard. ‘You’ll... need to keep the... channel open,’ he said.

Alisha shook her head, her hand hovering over the ‘cancel’ key but Regan stayed her. ‘We need this live to find him.’

Her fingers didn’t retract from the console, but neither did they move to push ‘cancel’. Her green eyes stared at the screen, the image burning into her skull. She wanted to turn away, she wanted to hide, she wanted to run. But there she sat in McNally’s seat on the flight deck listening to his blood curdling screams, rarely blinking as tears spilled down her cheeks. She watched him convulse in pain she couldn’t imagine. She bit her lip when he slumped the first time, horrified to see a physician deliver an injection that brought him back to consciousness, and the torture recommence. She shook her head slightly, she felt her throat tighten and her breathing becoming difficult. ‘Regan...’ her voice quivered, and she didn’t think she could trust it to continue. She wanted the image to go, she wanted it to prove untrue, to believe that it was just a trick. But then they would never find him.

‘Chai, Poppy, get me that trace, ma shong!’ Regan snarled, muting the line.

Chai swore voluminously as Poppy’s trembling fingers tapped more codes. ‘Looks like it’s being bounced off a nav-sat,’ Poppy said.

‘The feed’s coming to us via the uplink tower,’ Chai groaned.

‘Devious bitch,’ Regan muttered.

Poppy’s hands shook and she rubbed her palms together. ‘Wait, we can push a carrier signal back to the uplink, mask it as a routine systems check to the transmitter.’ Her hands became a blur and Chai started reading off data-strands from his hand-held.

‘How long?’ Regan asked.

‘Five, maybe ten minutes,’ Chai remarked.

‘Gorram,’ Regan hissed, resting a hand on Alisha shoulder. ‘We’ll get it.’

But Alisha didn’t hear him. Even though the sound was muted she could see McNally’s head roll and his mouth gape. She had heard him scream once and now her imagination was filling her ears with his beseeching cries for mercy.

Poppy shook her head. ‘I’m just getting the nav-sat responder,’ she cried.

‘Look for an alternate input frequency,’ Chai suggested. ‘I’ll see if there’s a wave signal piggy-backing in the regular traffic.’

Regan regarded Tobias, standing at the door, his eyes fixed on the screen, a somewhat appreciative smile on his lips. Regan stared at him for long seconds before Tobias realised he was under scrutiny. ‘Sorry Regan I was... distracted.’

‘Tell the others to get ready, we’re going to her bar,’ Regan said. ‘I don’t care what Thorner says.’ He glanced to Chai and jabbed a finger at the continuing scene of torture. ‘Get me his location as soon as you have it and let me know if Kid checks in.’

Chai gave a grunt of assent as he waited for his terminal to respond, looking to Alisha who sat trembling in the pilot’s seat. On the screen McNally’s head rolled and shook as he was subjected to more ungodly agony, Chai finally tearing his eyes from the image, seeing more codes appear from the cortex. ‘This can’t be happening,’ he murmured.

Alisha heard his words. ‘But it is,’ she muttered... and all she could think was this is my fault.

‘No!’ Poppy wailed. ‘There’s nothing, Chai, I can’t find where this signal is coming from!’

‘It can’t be,’ Chai hissed. ‘It has to be from somewhere planetside.’

‘No...’ Alisha sobbed. That woman was knelt at McNally’s head, listening intently. Alisha unmuted the line and strained to listen.

McNally’s voice rasped, ‘You... w-wanna... know... w-w-why?’

That woman’s clear tones came through. ‘I want to know why an outlaw like you shows such devotion to a girl like her, born of wealth and education, probably from a family with more influence than she realises. She’s not your lover, your wife or your daughter, and she doesn’t belong in the black... still you’ll give your life to protect hers.’ His head moved slightly and she leaned in. His voice rasped again, but the words were lost in the soft static buzz from the wave itself. He went quiet and that woman stayed, knelt by him, for a time.

Alisha shook her head. ‘No... no, he can’t be...’ She watched that woman rise and look to the physician, saying, ‘I’m finished with him,’ then she cast her glance to the camera and make a ‘throat-cut’ gesture.

The screen blanked.

Alisha, for so long hunched forward, slowly sat back. Part of her mind wanted her to scream, part of her mind wanted her to cry, but it was the surge of numbing dread which engulfed her. ‘It’s all my fault,’ she said, her voice a harsh whisper.

‘There’s nothing, Regan,’ Chai muttered into his com-link. ‘It just ended and... we’ve got nothing.’

‘Wait,’ shrieked Poppy. Her terminal showed a pulser signal. She called up the Sihnon City database and confirmed the signal emanating from the Old City warehouse district. She grabbed the com-link from Chai and blurted the co-ordinates to Regan, needing to repeat them three times.

‘Get Burton and meet us there,’ Regan’s voice came back then the line went dead.

Chai looked to Alisha. ‘Poppy, stay with her and tell Mei and Harrison what’s happened.’

Alisha rose to her feet. ‘I’m coming with you,’ she said, her tones breaking into a croak. Chai opened his mouth to answer but he saw the determination in her expression and simply nodded. Together they summoned Burton from the infirmary and dashed from the ship.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The warehouses were quiet, no mules in the vicinity, just a couple of tracked cargo-loaders parked on an otherwise empty lot. Chai, Alisha and Burton stalked along the long wall of one warehouse, reaching a junction and catching sight of the target building across a wide thoroughfare.

‘I still can’t believe it,’ Burton whispered.

‘Well it’s happened,’ Chai said as he kept Alisha behind him and cast a glance around. ‘Look’s deserted,’ he said.

‘Good,’ muttered Alisha, throwing caution to the black and striding out.

‘Wait,’ Burton hissed as he and Chai followed in her wake. ‘It might be a trap.’

Chai caught up with Alisha, seeing her gaze fixed on the warehouse door, keeping his eyes out, peering into the shadows. ‘He’s right.’

‘I don’t care,’ Alisha said, her voice clear in the night, her hand resting on the gun at her hip.

‘You might not, but we do,’ a voice said. It was Lock, leading Regan and the others, all but Marshal, emerging from an alleyway. ‘We found our mule and swept the area but there’s no sign of any Gong or Chang guards.’

Regan directed Hopscotch and Tobias to cover the corners and checked his com-link. ‘Marshal?’ He paused, listening. ‘He says we’re clear.’

Lock nodded. ‘Shall we?’

Regan and Chai reached the door, listening, before Lock’s boot popped the flimsy lock and dislodged the hinges. ‘Knock knock,’ he murmured, rifle at his shoulder, darting inside. Regan and Chai followed with Burton and Alisha brining up the rear.

Their eyes were drawn to a small table and two chairs illuminated from above, laid as for a sumptuous meal. There was a coagulated blood-puddle nearby and signs of a body being dragged away and, tied to one of the chairs, was Kid. The small bundle of her pack dangled from the other chair-back. Burton and Chai reached her, the medic sighing with relief as he felt her pulse coming through strong. As Chai released her hands he noted a strange reddened pattern on the palms of her hands and she gave a soft groan her eyes fluttering. Burton looked to Regan. ‘I think she’s okay,’ he said.

‘She can hear you,’ Kid growled, her eyes finally opening to focus. ‘That could’a gone better.’ She blinked in the bright light and finally set eyes on Regan, squinting at him. ‘Sorry, Cap’n, I just figured I’d mount a rescue mission.’

‘Next time, we discuss it, dong ma?’ Regan said as Chai helped her from the chair and headed for the exit. Regan looked around. ‘So where’s McNally?’

Lock moved deeper into the gloom, just able to make out a steel and wood frame. Beside it, heaped on the floor, were a short brown coat, a rawhide waist-coat and the tattered remains of a shirt and vest... and beyond those a body wrapped in a grey blanket. ‘Found him,’ Lock called, crouching beside the motionless form and rolling him onto his back.

‘Is he alive?’ Regan asked.

Alisha muscled Lock aside as she grabbed McNally’s wrist as well as pressing fingers to his throat, tears steaming but her jaw set. ‘Be alive, be alive, be alive,’ she chanted.

Burton knelt on the other side, seeing Alisha grip too tight, looking for a pulse but not feeling for it. ‘Relax,’ he said calmly, taking up McNally’s other wrist and finding a pulse in an instant. ‘I’ve got a pulse, slow but strong.’

Alisha immediately pulled a light from her pocket, peeled back McNally’s left eyelid and skimmed the beam across his eye, repeating the operation with the right. ‘Slightly depressed pupillary reflex,’ she managed to say.

Burton nodded, turning over McNally’s arm. ‘Looks like they were injecting him with goodness knows what,’ he said, finding track-marks. ‘I suspect he’s been heavily sedated.’

‘Can we move him?’ asked Regan.

Alisha was already trying to haul the unconscious man up on her own. Burton leant aid from the other side and Lock made an effort to help Alisha, but her scowl to him revealed that, in spite of the strain on her small frame, she wanted to struggle with the fist-fighter’s bulk. Lock simply looked to Regan as Alisha and Burton half-dragged McNally across the warehouse. ‘I think that means yes.’ he remarked, gathering up McNally’s coat and waistcoat.

Regan and Lock followed the medics across the space, eyes still scanning, waiting for the trap to spring, but it didn’t. Marshal had confirmed over the comms that the area was still quiet and they reached the street without incident where Hopscotch was now waiting at the controls of the mule.

They loaded McNally on first then clambered on, Kid being checked over by Burton while Alisha sat alongside McNally. She held his hand in hers and stroked his forehead. ‘It’s all my fault,’ she said as Marshal pulled a thermal blanket over McNally, Alisha’s tears splashing onto the glimmering foil.

Regan stood on the foot-plate at the back, holding onto an overhead grab-bar as Hopscotch set off, leaving the Old City behind them, his gaze fixed on Alisha as she watched over McNally.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Ship's Doctor
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Character name: Dr. Alisha 'Scrubs' Corbon

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:29 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

The trip was uneventful, but seemed to take an age, as Alisha tenderly stroked McNally’s hand, and watching the shallow rise and fall of his chest. She was almost fearful that any second he might stop breathing. As they reached the Rosin Dubh the first splattering of rain started, the hot days and stuffy nights finally relenting as the sky opened up behind them.

Alisha struggled with McNally, one arm slung over her shoulder as she started to move him, finally relenting when Burton appeared on his other side. Between the two of them they manoeuvred McNally through the ship to the infirmary and lay him on the table.

“Thank you William.” Alisha mumbled; as they got him lay down. “I… I’ve got it from here. If you want to take what you need for Kid… I’ve got it handled here… could just use some quiet time for a while.” She brushed her fingers on the back of McNally’s hand, “I’ll call you if I need you.”

Burton buffeted around the infirmary grabbing the parts he would need for kid, she was suffering from firstdegree burns on her hands, but apart from that she was healthy and well. Alisha waited for him to leave before starting her examination. She rolled the fist fighter onto his side, and placed him in the recovery position to ease his breathing and take the pressure off of the bruised needle holes along his spine. She opened the cupboard to discover that the swabs and antiseptic that she had organised before they had come to Shinon were no longer there. She opened the draw, then another cupboard and grumbled her irritation. What if it had been an emergency.

Burton had just flung the supplies in any direction, shoving them where there was space, and completely ignoring all the organising that she had done previously. Eventually she found what she was looking for and methodically set everything out on the table. She guessed and she hoped that it was a drug induced sleep, but she couldn’t tell just by looking, and she daren’t add more to the cocktail of drugs running through his body. Right now he needed cleaning up and monitoring, with some luck he would come round on his own.

Filling a bowl with warm water, she sponged down his upper half, wiping away the sweat and blood, and cleaning around his mouth. Alisha put a soothing antiseptic cream over the puncture marks that marred his skin. She took in every new wound. “I did this… this is my fault,” she murmured as her hands worked swiftly at cleaning the damage, so that it could heal without incident. All the while she worked he didn’t flinch, he didn’t move, he didn’t wake.

Once Alisha had finished, and double checked, once she had done as much as she could and there was nothing else to distract her, more tears fell down her cheeks, “I’m sorry,” she said to his unconscious self, pulling up a chair, she held one of his large paws in both of her small hands, her forehead resting on them. “I’m sorry…” she mumbled again, not bothering to wipe her tears as she waited.
OOC- Cassie
IC- Dr. Alisha "Scrubs" Corbon- "If you can't do somethin' Smart, do somethin' Right... If you can't do somethin' Right, do Somethin'"
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Character name: William Burton

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:51 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Burton quickly grabbed some bandages, salve and then led Kid out of the infirmary to her quarters. Best to leave Alisha with McNally for the moment. He would keep an eye on them both later. From the quick look over he'd managed before leaving he noted that there was no obvious signs of trauma other than the acupuncture wounds on his back, and abrasions from the restraints.
He would live, but he'd be sore and tender for a long time, and he doubted the fighter would be able to speak for a while, not with all the screaming they'd heard over the wave.

He'd seen interrogations before and they're after effects, and been involved in some to, to his shame. While as a doctor he'd hated them he had understood their necessity at times. This on the other hand and had been pure torture, no aim other than to cause the maximum amount of pain for the longest possible time before the victim either passed out or died.
He was glad that that other "doctor" how could he call himself that? Hadn't been there otherwise he may have found himself on the table with needles in his back and Burton's hand over the dial.
We ease pain, not cause it. He said to himself.
Tell that to those you shot. A small voice in the back of his head said.
That was different.
Was it? Do tell. It prompted.
It was war and my life or theirs.
And after?
"Why are even discussing this? Shut up." He asked out loud.
"Eh?" Kid asked as they headed through the ship.
"Nothing!" He said gruffly, holding the door to her cabin open.
Kid entered and sat on her bed holding her hand out for him to examine.
"Nothing serious you'll be glad to hear." he said turning them over a few time. She sighed. "Though I'd recommend you don't go tinkering around the engines for a day or two."
"You're kidding?" She exclaimed. "What 'am I goin'a do?"
"Sorry." He said applying salve and then bandaging her hands. "You could go and stick your hands back in the engines, but I wouldn't recommend it. They'll be sore and will take longer to heal."
I hate flying!
This one's got no pulse. -Next!
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Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:39 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Chang Li sat in the near darkness. She had the bar closed early and had gone up to dismiss the girls for the night, paying them handsomely for their trouble, before descending the stairs once more. She had poured herself a generous measure of good quality bourbon and took a seat at a table, sitting in the shadows, alone. She sipped her drink and contemplated the night, a strange stir of emotions as she remembered McNally’s screams... and his last words to her. She smiled to herself as she recalled his rasped whisper, revealing finally why she could not have him... and then her eyes began to sting with tears.

She bit her lip and tried to shake off the confused feelings, yet she couldn’t escape that fact that, from the first time she had seen ‘Detonator McNally’ fighting in the Krivak Arena on Athens, her infatuation had set her on a path to possess that which even her father told her could never be controlled. She found out later McNally had been offered a sizable sum to ‘take a fall’ by his opponent’s sponsor, Adelei Niska, and, in refusing to do so, the fighter had gained the admiration of the Chang Triad. Li had watched, enthralled, as McNally had fought against a hulking mountain of a man, enduring a terrible battering to win out in a brutal finale.

He had demonstrated that same tenacity under torture, enduring what precious few could, denying her the satisfaction of breaking him. When, in the end, he finally answered her, his words burned into her mind, chilling her to the core.

He would never give up, he would never give in and, while Alisha Corbon was under his protection he would indeed give his life for her. ‘Such devotion,’ Li murmured, sipping her bourbon and then rolling the glass between her delicate fingers.

Footsteps came from behind the bar and Fung emerged, flanked by two enforcers. ‘They have returned to the spaceport,’ he remarked.

Li swallowed back her emotions. ‘Gong Lau has my gratitude?’

Fung chuckled slightly. ‘The Companion has been sent, as you requested.’

‘Good,’ she murmured. ‘If there’s nothing else, you can go.’

Fung hesitated. ‘There is... one thing?’

She turned to him. ‘Yes?’

‘What about McNally and the girl?’

‘I have my satisfaction,’ she said softly. ‘Lucas has paid for his final betrayal while Dr Corbon will have at least an inkling of my wrath even if she couldn’t stomach the whole display.’

‘And McNally shian shen?’ Fung folded his arms.

‘I underestimated him, Fung,’ she replied, swirling her glass and regarding the dark-amber liquid in the half-light. ‘But now I understand him... I know now why he denies me.’

‘Do you think he will be a danger?’ Fung asked. ‘The female intruder planted explosives and when the others arrived they were organised and quite heavily armed for such a small party, so it is clear he has powerful allies.’

‘I doubt he will seek reprisal,’ she said. ‘And as powerful as his allies may be, McNally himself is the more dangerous individual.’ She gave Fung a tight smile, the trace of a tear shining on her cheek. ‘Would you kindly go, now, Fung,’ she said, her voice a tight whisper. It was not a request, in spite of the polite tone, it was an order. The three men left the way they came and she was once more alone.

Minutes passed and she sat in silent contemplation, tears spilling from her cheeks, anguished that she had so misunderstood and wholly misjudged McNally, thinking him no more than a resourceful and careful criminal-turned-brawler. But he was much more than that... so much more. Finally, she raised her glass. ‘To you, McNally shian shen,’ she said, her voice near breaking. ‘Wo hu, chung long.’
Last edited by McNally on Thu Nov 14, 2013 11:53 am, edited 2 times in total.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Character name: Det McNally

Post Wed Nov 13, 2013 5:50 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

‘McNally, please,’ Brett Gatlin cried. ‘Let me outta here!’ The dark-haired youth rattled the heavy timber-mill doors, but there didn’t budge more than an inch. Beau and Luke were already taken care of, bloodied and battered elsewhere in the building, leaving only their younger brother to face McNally’s wrath alone.

McNally appeared, face gashed from where Beau had swiped at him with a piece of two-by-four, but the bloody wound went unheeded as the blond-haired boy strode into the open. ‘Not nice, is it?’ he said coldly, his fists clenched. ‘No brothers here to protect you, no where to run. This’ll be the last time any o’you even lay a finger on my cousin again.’

Brett made a break for cover as McNally lunged at him. He was three years younger than McNally and didn’t have the stomach or the strength to fight, unlike his brothers, and only went along with them so they didn’t pick on him. But this was beyond all of them. McNally had trapped them in here, picked off first Luke, then Beau and was now meaning Brett harm. ‘Please, I’m sorry,’ Brett hollered as he dived between two milling machines, looking for another exit.

McNally calmly pursued the last Gatlin brother, having already memorised the layout and knowing the Brett was running into a dead end. ‘You ain’t sorry,’ McNally bellowed. ‘You’re just straight-out scared.’

Brett glanced back, seeing McNally, and darted to the right, squeezing between the back of a conveyor and the wall, trying to find a route out. He whimpered as he turned again, expecting to find an escape but only came up against the back of a wood-stack. He started to sob as he tried to climb, but the wood was tidily piled and he only managed to get splinters in his fingers and palms. He was crying as he realised McNally was right behind him. He spun about and crouched, wailing, ‘Please, Det, don’t hurt me, it was them what started it, I didn’t wanna, I like Molly, it’s just, please don’t hurt me, I’m beggin’ ya!’

McNally looked down at Brett, a kid the same age as Molly, still a child growing up in his brothers’ shadows. The sound of trickling water and the dark staining at the crotch of the boy’s britches revealed Brett's dread, and it made McNally hesitate... then he took a step.

‘NO!’ screeched Brett, his hand thrust forward, a small blade flashing in a shaft of sun-light. ‘Stay back!’

McNally eyed the knife, the smell of panic and warm urine reaching his nostrils. ‘If you’n’your brothers so much as wink at Molly, I’ll make you wish you weren’t never born.’ He turned away and clambered back between the machines and wood stacks, reaching the padlocked doors. He had no key but one of Molly’s hair-pins was all he needed to pop it open, strolling off into heat of a blazing sun. He raised his eyes to the light, lids closed, as warmth overwhelmed him and he felt suddenly as though he was falling.


With the return to consciousness, everything ached, back, chest, stomach, legs, arms, head, everything. Even the low lights of the infirmary in the early hours were almost too much, setting a throbbing pain behind his eyes. His mouth was dry and his throat sore, but his mind slowly began to process his surroundings, the warmth, the clinical smell, the feel of a medical couch... the gentle pressure of small fingers on his big hands.

He was aboard the Roisin Dubh, in the infirmary and Alisha was asleep, tears dried on her face. He wished not to rouse her but his position, now he was conscious, was somewhat uncomfortable and even the slightest shift in his hips roused her.

Her emerald eyes were ringed with dark circles and she almost gave way to sobs and she moved to cradle his head. ‘Oh Det, I’m sorry,’ she whispered. ‘It’s all my fault.’

She helped him roll slowly onto his back, the twinges running down his spine as the nerve-bundles so recently assaulted merely echoed remnant discomfort. ‘S’okay,’ he croaked.

She brought a drinking-bottle with a plastic tube attached to his lips. ‘Just sip,’ she murmured as he gulped two mouthfuls. ‘I thought you were...’

He sat back, blinking, his eyes adjusting still, his throat soothed by the cool water and his head spinning as the room moved. ‘It’d take more than that to kill me,’ he muttered. She still held onto one of his hands as though she feared to let him go. He squeezed her hand gently. ‘You okay?’

She almost gasped in amazement. ‘I saw what happened to you, that woman showed us,’ she said. ‘And you’re asking if I’m okay? If it wasn’t for me this would never’ve happened.’

He grunted noncommittally as she fed him more water. He coughed suddenly, his head throbbing and the room spinning. ‘Gorram,’ he growled, closing his eyes and waiting for the ‘verse to settle. ‘You’re in the clear, anyway,’ he said softly, licking his lips and still tasting cinnamon. ‘Sealed with a kiss,’ he added enigmatically, a smile tugging at his lips.

Alisha frowned at him. ‘It’s not funny,’ she murmured. ‘She could’ve killed you and that would be down to me, another life gone because of me, more blood on my hands.’ She made to pull away as her eyes seared and her heart ached, but his grip was suddenly firm and his other hand went to her shoulder. She saw the effort it took him even to do that, but she also saw the determination in his eyes.

‘What she did to me wasn’t down to you,’ he grunted. ‘I walked in there expectin’ somethin’, maybe a beating. I never figured she’d be a little more inventive, but that don’t mean what happened is down to you.’

‘But it was,’ she hissed. ‘If I hadn’t...’ She suddenly couldn’t bring herself to say the words.

‘If you hadn’t killed her brother, he would’ve blown me and her away,’ McNally said softly, squeezing her shoulder. ‘You save my life... an’ we got played anyway. I didn’t realise it until last night. We walked into a set-up, fit right into her plan, up ‘til you put a bullet through her brother’s neck. She had to do somethin’ about that. She knew that, I knew that.’ He released her shoulder and settled back, the sheer effort of holding onto her almost too much, his body screaming for him to stop. ‘She needed a scapegoat.’

‘She could’ve killed you,’ Alisha said again, stroking his calloused knuckles.

‘If she’d wanted me dead she’d’ve gone an’ put a bullet in my brain-pan,’ he said, staring at the ceiling. ‘Or slit my throat. But she didn’t want to kill me, she just... wanted me.’ He shifted uncomfortably. ‘She wanted me as her consort, to stay with her, get her pregnant and then I could live a life of luxury with all the power and money and women I wanted. All I had to do was stay on Sihnon. Then she’d forget all about you.’ He looked to Alisha, seeing the consternation in her eyes. ‘She got all uppity when I refused, that’s when I figured I was due the beatin’. She, ah, did what she did, but it changed nothin’.’ He sighed and closed his eyes. ‘Ain’t no power in the ‘verse controls me.’

Alisha leaned forward and rested her head on his chest, listening to him breathe and feeling the strength returning to him. Ain’t no power in the ‘verse controls me. ‘Was that what you told her? At the end?’

His hand stroked her hair. ‘No,’ he said softly. ‘I just told her exactly why I’d die before I’d let her so much as touch you.’

‘Will you tell me?’ Alisha asked, voice hushed and strained.

‘No,’ he replied, flatly. She was about to ask him why but he continued. ‘I need to rest anyway, right?’

She felt him settle, his hand still gripping hers, gently but firmly, his breathing steady and even. ‘Goodnight, Det,’ she whispered.

‘Goodnight, xaio mei mei,’ he whispered back, stroking her hair once more.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’

kid

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Post Wed Nov 20, 2013 9:48 am

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Kid sat on her bunk, staring down at her bandaged hands. Stupid, that's what she'd been. Stupid, and insufficiently insulated. Adding another layer of rubber to the soles of her boots was going to be the first thing she did when she could use her hands again. Couldn't afford to get caught out like that in the black.

At least no-one had asked her what she had planned, so she hadn't had to lie. She was terrible at lying. She checked the time. Twenty minutes, that's all she'd been awake for. Just twenty gorram minutes. Two days of this was going to kill her. She groaned in frustration and jumped to her feet. At least she could have a stroll around the port.

 

She passed Marshall warily in the corridor. There was something about someone who so openly admitted to having been a soldier that meant she just couldn't trust him. Not to mention the fact he didn't seem entirely aware he'd stopped being one. She'd not been properly at ease since he'd been on board; she'd started carrying her knife again. Despite herself, the thing he was carrying caught her eye. "Body armour" he said in reply to her query "It got a bit beat up back…there. Need to get it repaired but it costs." She squinted at it lopsidedly "Let me have it for a day or so, I'll see what I c'n do.”  She'd seen the captain and the preacher with some of this stuff too. Maybe if she could fix it…

 

She found Chai at work on one of the terminals in the Roisin Fuil. "How's it goin'?" she asked as she lent over his shoulder to look at the readouts. He shrugged slightly. "Not bad. Some of the wiring's a mess, fixable though." He eyed her "Aren't you meant to be resting?" In reply she held out the armour with a grin "Teach me about this stuff? It'll keep me outta trouble."
Nah, ship didn't need those parts anyway...
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