YC111.01.19 // The Faded Shadow

[date/YC111/01/19.return_log]

  • {call-in ref:date/YC110/07/07.ref_log}

“So tell me the end of the story!” She yelled over the channel as the afterburners burned loudly, swooping us into descent over the station. “What happens to Mithathrotes?”

I stand up, grabbing the handlebar for support, readying for deployment with my team.

“Mithathrotes defeats his brother in battle. Traditionally, the battle is said to have taken place at the foot of the Basileau mountains.”

“We’re coming in cold ma’am, ain’t nothin’ showin’ on scan.” said Hario as he maneuvered us toward the docking bay.

“How’d he do that?” she asked, standing up beside me.

“Erebo offered him the power to call up the dead, but he was arrogant. As he fought at the mountains with his brother, the battle wasn’t going in his favor. He realized how weak flesh and steel really were.”

Lights blinked in the bay as we slipped inside, our craft slowly nearing the loading platform.

“So his brother surrounded him and what men he had left, and just as they were about to descend upon him, Mithathrotes cries out to Erebo, asking for his gift. Erebo grants it, and the dead rose up from the ground and consumed Alakalios’ men, dragging them into Erebo’s domain.”

“Boardin’ on your signal, ma’am.”

“As Mithathrotes is about to slay his brother, his sister Agatheria comes to Mithathrotes on the battlefield, accompanied by Athero. They beg him to reconsider his actions, but Mithathrotes is completely taken by his lust for vengeance. He kills Alakalios, and as his brother’s body falls to the ground, a great howling is heard throughout the land, and Erebo comes up from below the earth.

“Erebo tells Mithathrotes that he has stolen the royal blood he promised to him and that his Halls will not be robbed so easily. He demands from Mithathrotes a soul, and in a rush to save his own he reaches to offer up his sister. As he’s about to take her, Athero raises her hand and a great light spills over the field. Erebo screams and writhes in pain, retreating back into the earth. Mithathrotes is blinded by the light, and falls to his knees.”

“Ma’am, we’re pickin’ up movement on scan. We need to get goin’.”

“What happens to Mithathrotes?” asked Caillamode, switching us over to a private channel.

“As Athero whisks his Agatheria away, to the Realm Above, his sister damns Mithathrotes to an eternity of blind wandering to atone for his sins, and with Athero’s blessing revokes his kingship. Mithathrotes can therefore not be consumed by Erebo, because he is not royal blood, and cannot enter into the Enduring Heavens because he is damned. Agatheria and Athero vanish, and the world falls into darkness. They say Mithathrotes still slinks around in the shadows, haunting the kingdom he never had.”

She was quiet for a moment. “That’s not a very encouraging story, is it?”

I chuckled. “No, I suppose not.” I looked at her, and smiled. She smiled back.

I tapped the side of my helmet, and my visor descended, locking into place.

[date/YC111/01/19.end_log]

  • {call-out ref:date/YC110/07/07.ref_log}

YC109.09.23 // The Hard Way

[date/YC109/09/23_return.log]

“The capsuleer program is not an easy road, Adainy. Many attempt and very few actually ever succeed.”

I nodded.

“And you know that once one becomes a capsuleer…” he hesitated. I met his gaze. “Adainy, there’s no going back.”

Another nod. “I know.”

It was quiet for a moment. The ventilation in the room kicked on, letting out a slight creak. I rubbed the scar by my right eye. The slight paralysis that affected the muscles near my temple was acting up again.

“How are your piloting skills?” he asked, breaking the silence.

It was a loaded question. None of the empires would let any regular soldier join, let alone one whose piloting was limited to shuttles and civilian craft. I didn’t respond. There was no need to.

“You could complete the Federation Navy Reconnaissance program. Extremely dangerous, but they teach basic frigate skills, along with tactical fighter piloting with carriers.”

It was an option. I was hardly the most competent and skilled soldier, but I had shown an innate ability to not die. I thoroughly surprised those higher in the chain of command after being sucked into the vacuum of space following a debilitating attack by Amarr extremists on the Minmatar tower where I had been stationed.

“Would you write me a letter of recommendation, Barle?” I asked.

“For the FNR?” He looked puzzled.

“No, for an application to the Federal Navy Academy,” I corrected him. “For capsuleer training.”

He raised his eyebrows, and let out a huff. “Provided you complete the Federation Navy Reconnaissance program – and live trough any subsequent missions or sorties – yes.”

A terse response. He furrowed his brow, shifting some papers on his desk, then looked up at me.

“Adainy, if you do complete the program,” he paused, mulling his thoughts around, ” – well, I can’t make any promises, but I’m sure we could find a way to declare the recommendation to be from the whole of the Servant Sisters of EVE, not just one of their contracted agents.”

I smiled a short smile. That was enough for me. “And my debt with the Servant Sisters?”

“You know there was never a debt to begin with, Adainy.”

I sighed. Barle lifted a glass off his desk and stood up, gazing out his window at the planet below. He took a sip of his drink.

“Moral obligations – there’s something you won’t have to deal with when you’re a capsuleer.”

[date/YC109/09/23_end.log]