Chapter 3

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Waking up after a loss by Manasi is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

“Waking up after a loss”

Chapter 3 “once more into the breach”

On board the cruiser, Manasi smelled the confines; the air wasn’t stale, just slightly old.  The ships familiar feel came back to him and he relaxed a little more.  He and his guests made way towards the flight bridge.  Normally when fast changing ships the docking mechanisms just extracted the pod and placed the pod into the new ship.  Behind him in the heart of the ship was his pod and he could get there with a few seconds and jack in.  The ship was relatively empty, save for a few maintenance bots that cleaned something or adjusted something.  The ship seemed in excellent shape.  HE spoke to Jeffrey about the layout of the armaments and realized how far behind the technology curve he had become.  Heavy Missile launchers were loaded with Paradise heavies, but any of the other types could be loaded as he had a cargo hold full of different missile types.
“Thanks for taking such good care of her Jeff!”, he appreciated the work that had gone into maintaining a ship for someone that may not come back and had after 3 and a half years, man chief’s would have just sold the ship and the modules or melted it for minerals.  Not Jeff, Manasi thought, he had maintained it and kept the “Vengeance” ready for action.
“Let me show you your rooms” Manasi told the others.
“Jeff and I will be next door to each other, and you two ladies will be down the hall just a ways.  There are bathrooms in every room and while the ship isn’t barren it has been a while since anyone has been aboard her. So if you need something please comm link me directly.” Manasi was hopeful that their quarters would be clean, Jeff and he did not mind much, but he wanted to make a good impression and be a good.  While aboard the vengeance all were his responsibility.
Janelle walked into the cabin.  It was larger than she imagined, but she had not known what to expect.  The blue steel reflected a nice shine; at least the space was clean.  She touched the panel behind the bed which turned see through and she was taken aback.  The window was floor to ceiling and she had a wonderful view of the shipyard and the docking area.  She watched as the docking lines retracted and ever so gently the cruiser pulled away.  What was she doing here?  She knew Jeffrey well, her mother and father trusted him  and she trusted him too.  When Jeff showed up breathe less at her door talking rapidly about his long lost friend she was intrigued.  As she made their way to the station, she reviewed his records and was clearly astounded.  Stasis for almost 4 years was unheard of though it was not as rare as it had once been.  The duration was the difference.  She admonished herself; he was a man who had obviously been through a great deal.  Once meeting him she liked him.  He had a smiling face, broad shoulders and tall.  All three things she found physically attractive, but more than that he had the internal temperament of solid steel and you could almost see the shine reflected from within him, yet he was not a braggart.
She walked out her room and then ducked back in to see if there was anything she could change into, sure enough there were some Caldari uniforms but to her surprise a Minmatar, Amarr, and even Gallenete styled clothes.  She locked her door, and stepped over to the shower.  Setting the temperature she stepped out of her clothes.  She detached the knife sheath, two hidden guns and a small patch containing data chips.  She stood at the window, without her clothes and wondered if any of the docking workers could see in, she doubted anyone could see in, but she would ask Manasi later.  She was not ashamed to be naked but rather didn’t like voyeurs.  She hoped Manasi didn’t have any Cameras to spy on visitors, but thought that he would just come and ask if he wanted to ask someone anything.
She relaxed a little and took a long shower, relaxing in the water.  She would ask Manasi if there was a relaxing bath she could take, she didn’t know the capabilities of the ship, and while she could find out she preferred to ask the captain.
A voice made her jump about 3 feet towards her weapons, “Janelle”, it was Manasi’s voice from a speaker.
“Yes?” she replied comforted he hadn’t stepped into the room and surprised her.
“Sorry to bother you but if you’d like some food we can eat on the flight bridge, or anywhere else for that matter, are you interested?”
“What’s on the menu?” she replied.
“Anything you want, we have a well stocked pantry, thanks to Jeff, just make your way  to the flight bridge if that where you would like to eat.” He replied with a calm tone.
“The clothes are all cleaned, I bought a large selection when we would have guests, is there anything you can wear?” Manasi asked.
“There is a large selection, thanks for being a kind host, I’ll see you in five minutes” the communication link clicked off, and Janelle turned off her shower.
She dressed hurriedly and took a look in the mirror, she waved her fingers across her eyes and a more nighttime style of makeup appeared on her face.  She touched her lips and the assumed a fiery tone that was several shades off from her natural hair color.  There was a great Minmatar half dress/ half sash that showed off her curves but was modest enough to not embarrass anyone she hoped.  She brushed the hair from her face and made her way to the flight bridge.  If the view from her room was so incredible, the view from there would be fantastic.
As she stepped off the flight bridge lift she noticed several other men and women, neither Jeff, Manasi, nor even Marisa were visible.  A Caldari officer approached her “Ma’am, May I help you?”
“Where might the Captain be?”
“Oh he is in his personal study, ¾ of the way around the other side of the bridge you’ll see his ready room marked.” He pointed her in the direction
“As she was making her way there several of the men on the bridge offered to show her they way.”
“No thanks, I can manage” she replied to each in turn.
“CAPTAIN on the BRIDGE!” called the first Officer.  Everything stopped and snapped to attention.
“As you were”, said Manasi “ And gentlemen, while I appreciate your offers to help Janelle, trust me when I say she can eliminate any of you before you would blink, so tread very lightly if you would.”
“Aye Captain!”, they responded
Marisa and Jeff walked off the lift and Jeff asked Manasi “how many do we have onboard sir?”
“Thirty one not including us, according to the ships log, the compliment is larger normally but this is the skeleton crew.  We have engineering, weapons, communications, but all navigation will have to be done either in my pod or here on the bridge.” replied Manasi.
As they left the Tash-Murkon star base behind, Manasi thought of his long departed CEO phrase…”Once more into the breach…”


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