The Kavakian Empire
A Space Opera by Dawn Ross
Part One – Starfire Dragons (provisional title)
Chapter 7 – Revised
(Check under Categories for “The Kavakian Empire” then, “Sci-Fi Part 1 – Revised” link in the right hand column in order to read the previous chapters of this science fiction novella. This story has changed so make sure you go to the revised one.)
Lieutenant Junior Grade Mik Calloway’s legs were cramping. The urge to shift his balance intensified, but he couldn’t do it with Lieutenant Commander Bracht watching. The man scowled darkly and his nostrils flared as he stood before him and several other security officers. The big blond Rabnoshk warrior said nothing as he eyed each of them in turn. When the man’s eyes fell on him, he resisted the urge to swallow down the lump welling in his throat.
The Lt. Commander was upset, this much he was certain. He only hoped the man wasn’t upset at him. It was only a slight modification. Not really a lie. But the warrior was strict about such things. I had to do it, though. Jack was such a goodie-goodie. He always got all the recognition. Ass-kisser. I only did it to get what I was due.
Lt. Gresher entered the security officer’s hall. As usual, he was wearing that stupid smile of his. It wouldn’t have been so bad if the man’s mouth wasn’t so wide. He looked ridiculous. But everyone seemed to like him, so no one made fun.
Gresher nodded to the Lt. Commander and took his place in the line. The Rabnoshk warrior responded with a penetrating look, but didn’t chide the man like he should have.
“In case you haven’t already heard, we have two Tredons on board,” the Lt. Commander said. “Regardless of how many of you feel about Tredons, I expect you to do your duty with the fullest integrity of an Alliance officer.”
He paused a moment, probably to emphasize how important he felt duty was. The man was all about duty. He wouldn’t be surprised if the word was tattooed on his ass. Well, at least he hadn’t gotten caught and his recently promoted rank was still intact.
“What you may not be aware of is how this situation is being handled and the increased danger it presents,” Lt. Commander Bracht continued.
The man paused again as he gave each of the officers another sour look. Mik subtly shifted his feet and gritted his teeth in impatience. He had seen the security alert earlier but was not one of the ones called to duty. He’d been itching to find out what was going on, but the most anyone would tell him was that two Tredon children had been rescued from a crash.
He was a lieutenant junior grade now. He had a right to know more. What good was his new rank if he was still going to be treated like a grunt? Well, at least now they realize they need me. Took ‘em long enough.
The Lt. Commander took a deep breath. His face darkened. “The two boys will be treated as guests.”
Mik nearly choked. “What the fuck?” he said. Fortunately, the Lt. Commander didn’t seem to have heard him above the gasps and curses of the other officers.
“Silence!” the big man bellowed.
Mik and the others stiffened in attention. His blood ran hot. Tredons had killed two of his friends back on a space station a few years ago where he had been awaiting his new assignment on the Odyssey. And now their devilish little spawn were being treated as guests.
“The older child is in sick bay, still unconscious. But the other is with Commander Hapker. Reports tell me this younger one is very intelligent and highly trained,” the Rabnoshk warrior said. “So I want you to keep a very close eye on him. And do not underestimate either of them.”
“Why aren’t they in a cell?” Mik demanded.
“That is not your concern, Lt. Calloway,” the man replied with an angry glare. Mik should have known better not to question him, but he couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “Your concern is to the safety of this crew. At the same time, I expect you to be on your best behavior. Despite what these children are, you will not provoke them. You will guard them, and you will guard their safety as well.”
“Their safety?” another officer said.
“They’re barbarians,” Mik added. “Why should be care about their safety?”
Other officers began to protest too. He heard words like butchers, brutes, animals, and monsters and agreed with them all.
“We have our orders,” the Rabnoshk warrior interrupted. “The children are not wanted for any crimes and so they are not going to be locked up unless they give us reason.”
“Are we going to wait until they kill someone first?” Mik asked.
“Watch your tone, Lieutenant,” the man growled. His dark eyes bored into his own.
He gritted his teeth in seething fury, but turned away from the Rabnoshk warrior’s look.
“You have your orders,” Lt. Commander Bracht said with his attention back on all the officers. “You will keep them away from secure areas while at the same time allowing them to visit the public areas of the ship. And however you feel about them, you will behave in a professional manner at all times. I do not want to hear of any name calling and I will not tolerate anyone using force, unless it is clearly necessary. Is that understood?”
Most of the officers mumbled a yes, sir, but Mik said nothing. When he chose security as his profession, he hoped he’d be fighting Tredons not helping them. The mangled bodies of his friends seared his mind. That these children were probably just toddlers at the time didn’t matter. They were Tredons and all Tredons were the same.
“Is that understood?” the Lt. Commander said again more forcefully.
“Yes, sir!” they replied. He mouthed the words, but defiantly made no sound.
When the Rabnoshk warrior dismissed them, he stormed out.
I’d love to hear some constructive criticism. Please leave a comment below. Praise would be most welcome as well.
(This sci-fi saga is protected by copyright) Copyright February, 2016 by Dawn Ross
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I like this insight into Calloway – his entitlement and his quick temper are readily apparent, and if he’s still as defiant as he was in the first draft, this chapter really helps to set the stage for when he causes real trouble. Love it! ❤