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idiot

𝘣𝘶𝘳𝘯 𝘣𝘢𝘣𝘺.




://ACT_ONE: THE ARRIVAL




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karl casey



hacker








://JORDAN_CHAPMAN_

Capable fingers clutched the simplistic, gold band; suspended around her neck by a thin chain. The inner etching caught the fluorescent light. Para mi amor.

She would make it right.

Jordan splashed water on her face, staring back at the unimpressed reflection. Pain shot through her leg, the relatively fresh bullet wound tormenting her. A constant reminder of her failure.

Ignoring the pain, Jordan stepped into her quarters. The room was barely touched, sheet's taut and cornered against the thin mattress. An entire week she had spent in this room and nothing to show for it - apart from the lone blazer that was neatly folded on the bed's edge.

Checking her watch, she surmised she had given the crew sufficient time to meet in the lounge. They were quickly approaching the MHS-Desdemona's last known location and needed to be debriefed. Not that I know much of anything. The Melton-Hisano Corp had been rather tight-lipped about the entire mission.

Chapman tucked the chain into her shirt, the mechanical door churning open.

://VALENTINE_LACASA_

Valentine's scuffed heeled-boots rested on the lounge's centre table. A cherry-flavoured lollipop settled between her plump lips. Her sultry gaze landed on Tony Varon, spooning nutrient paste into his big mouth.

"My, my, this is heavenly, Paula." The software engineer's voice smooth and suave, sending a wink towards the older woman. Valentine held back her audible gag. That man is a total sleaze. Not that he was wrong, Paula made Valentine wish she was aboard her family's ship. Masking the horrid, bland taste of nutrient paste was a feat not many could achieve.

"A little southern hospitality and spices go a long way." Words laced with a thick accent that rivalled Carl's, Paula smiled as murmurs of agreement followed. Speaking of Carl, the old man was schlumped in the corner, a dog-eared book in hand. Thin, wire-framed glasses perched on his nose, he was clearly more interested in the book than the conversation.

"You should eat up dearie, you need some meat on those bones." Paula lectured, her small eyes narrowing on Valentine's long, slender legs perched on the table. Raising a manicured brow, Valentine considered her words carefully but was beaten by a stuttering Griff.

"I-I think you look...good, V-Valentine..." Heads turned towards the representative, thick glasses made his beady eyes appear larger, blinking nervously. Most of the crew seemed to not like the presence of Griff — especially considering he was basically here to bust their balls. Yet, Valentine found him endearing in his own way. Tony barked out a laugh, shaking his head.

"Oh lover-boy has a crush, ain't that sweet," Tony mocked him, "a shame the soldier bros here have already called dibs." Sticking a thumb towards Cave and Denzel. Valentine was going to punch him. Despite his age he was a literal child. How the hell was he married?

"Shut up, you misogynist asshole."
A small yet defiant voice came from the pink-haired medic, piercings covering her face and ears. Apparently she was a medical student who offered to attend for less pay and some first-hand experience. I guess you got to start somewhere.

"Someone seems a little jealous, you'd love a night alone with Cave and Denzel, wouldn't you?"
Tongue sharp and wit even sharper, Valentine teased Tony, a smirk dancing across her lips.

Tony scoffed, rolling his eyes, "might need some medical attention after that burn, care to help me nurse?" A suggestive look in Amelia's direction.

"Does MHC have any legal rules around spacing a crew member, Griff?" Valentine quipped back, trying to save Amelia from the sleaze's advances.

"Oh...uh," as though taking it seriously, Griff seemed to think hard. "Uh, n-no. I don't think there is any specific outlines regarding—" The scattered chuckling must of made Griff understand it was a joke, nervously laughing along with them. Bless his heart, Valentine thought.

The man-child had no time to respond as the all-too-familiar footsteps echoed throughout the SS-Azael's hallway.

Any conversations ceased, silence filling the room. All Valentine could hear was Griff's audible gulp.

Chapman had that effect on people.

://TONY_VARON_

Tony adjusted his loose fitting tie — having decided to wear a royal, deep purple that had faint white dots printed throughout. While Tony loved himself, he also loved his ties. He may of gone overboard with the amount of ties he brought alone for this little expedition. Then again, you never know what occasion may occur.

Chapman's formidable steps stopped as she entered the lounge. A bland but...respectable wardrobe adorned her solid figure and Tony noted her cream-coloured coat looked expensive. Who knew the captain had taste.

"I'm only going to say this once."
The imposing woman purposefully paced in front of the crew scattered around the SS-Azael's lounge. The artificial light was harsh and coupled with the unpleasant yellow accents, Tony could tell this was an older model of Melton-Hisano Corp's world-renowned spaceships.

"You are all under my watch." Words cut with unwavering authority, it was crystal clear Chapman was a woman of little patience, "what I say is final—"

A single hand rose from the crowd; belonging to the meek Griff, who wore a wrinkled suit that was two-sizes too big for him. Tony considered cutting him some slack and teaching him a thing or two about tailoring after this.

Griff's mouth parted, ready to spout some corp bullshit. Thankfully, a menacing icy-glare from Chapman shut the walking, talking rulebook up.

"As I was saying," Chapman continued, "I was hired to keep you all alive. That is only possible if you all listen to everything I say." Jordan punctured every word, voice stern.

"If you don't mind me asking, Captain," Tony pushed off the yellow-padded wall, "what exactly is the mission? I mean, I understand we are to find out the Desdemona's status...but why send scientists?" His rolled-up, sleeved hand swept over the crowd, "no offence to you educated folk," bearing his usual smug smile towards the scientifically-inclined crew members. "I mean we even have a fucking psychologist." He glared towards Virgil, chuckling in his throat.

"To be frank, I have no idea." Chapman admitted but didn't falter. In the corner of his eye he watched the cute blonde medical assistant scribble something down. He could tell the faded-pink ends were home-dyed and her clothing was stylistically ripped, or at least he hoped. I guess MHC let any riff-raff aboard.

"Well, what about you, Suits?"
Tony turned his attention to Griff, whose blue eyes went wide, "you bloody work for them, you must know why they sent us over their own lackeys?" It took Griff a moment to respond, as though collecting his thoughts. Tony couldn't help but take pleasure as he squirmed.

"Oh, uh...well, at MHC, safety is very important to us!" Griff smiled nervously, "the MHS-Desdemona is one of our more...confidential expeditions. Regardless, these workers are our family and we wanted the very best for them, which is you guys! We like to be prepared here at MHC, this could merely be a communication failure or..." he trailed off, following with a mere whisper, "...mutiny."

"In other words, MHC is covering their own asses from another scandal,"
Valentine sat up in the metal chair, adjusting the cherry lollipop in her mouth. Griff had no response, growing smaller in his chair by the second. Tony recalled watching the news that day, one of MHC's flagships randomly combusting and killing all the crew. I mean that would make our job easy if that happened to the Desdemona too.

"Enough."
Chapman said coldly, silence filling the room, "we are to make contact with the Desdemona in the next hour. I will be leading a search-and-rescue team, which will consist of Yeon-Woo, Yohannan, and Carreira." Tony had forgotten about Yeon-Woo. He scanned the room, finding the battle-scarred woman near the exit. She had barely spoken this entire time aboard the ship. As for Yohannan, Tony's gaze lingered on the rather rugged and attractive man. He reminded him of Garrett in a lot of ways. I wish that bastard would answer my calls.

"Before I hear any back talk, Sullivan, I need you stay aboard in case the crew are placed in harms way." Chapman left no room for debate.

Leaving the testosterone-filled mutt leashed aboard the ship, smart move, cap.

"In case of injured civilians, I want Zhivago and Schulz accompanying us. Along with Koehl who will be responsible for fixing the communication system and checking if the air is breathable aboard the Desdemona."
Tony hoped it was, he hated wearing that retractable mask. It fogged up and made him sweaty.

"If your name was called, I want you suited up and ready to leave in the coming hour. Everyone else will remain on board until we find out what is the Desdemona's status," Without another word, Chapman turned, ready to disappear once more.

"What about me, Captain?" Chapman swivelled around on her heels, the question having come from the young blonde once more. Oh this will be good, Tony thought.

"What about you, Lodge" Chapman's eyes cold and challenging.

"I'm part of the medical team too, they will need me." The blonde complained, her eyes shortly flicking to Nikki. Interesting. Tony could hear a crack of fear in her words. Her youthful skin glowed in the harsh lighting, a bead of sweat on her temple. Someone's a little nervous.

"Lodge you are to remain on board unless your assistance is needed,"
Chapman seemingly didn't wait for a response, the mechanical door opening at her presence, "everyone is dismissed."

Tony hoped this was a simple case of a broken communication system and he could go back to sipping cocktails on Second Earth's artificial beach in no time.





♡coded by uxie♡
 

Krill

Lurker in Darkness
The moment Chapman was out of the room, in a motion so natural it was barely noticed, Nikki's flask - which had remained, out of habit or an abundance of caution, tucked just under the edge of her jacket while the captain was on deck - slipped back into her hand, and just as quickly, her hand moved to her mouth, where it tilted the rest of the contents down her gullet. There was a disappointing brevity to it all, marked by Nikki's winsome pout as she squinted down the metal hatch.

"Well." She kicked off the edge of the couch whose ledge she had been perched on since she'd entered the room, too late to get her own seat (and just seconds before Chapman's steps had echoed down the other hall). With a thud, a sway, and a grin (in a quick succession of that order) she landed just beside the door, and raised the metal in the general direction of Koehl, Carreira, and the silent war hero. "You kids have fun over there. I'll hold down the fort."

Hands sliding into pockets (one still clutching the empty flask, fingers relaxing to its shape), Nikki left by the main door, returning with a too-comfortable trudge in the familiar direction of the bridge.
 
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Zerulu

The Real Kanye
Supporter






Dr. Zhivago




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Gustavo Santaolalla



All Gone (seasons)









Consumed by the void, the Doctor stared off into eerily clean and symetrical patterns that adorned the walls. Suddenly snapped back to reality due to the realisation of the debrief that was being held soon.

Lukas got up off his seat, an oddly shaped, not very ergonomic white office chair. Adjusting his glasses on his face, they had to be perfectly perched upon his nose, how else were they going to serve their purpose?

All was set, the Doctor made his way to lounge in a fast manner, speed walking down the halls to ensure his punctual arrival. As the mechanical doors opened for the Doctor much of the crew were already there, he slyly made his way into the room, trying not to make his presence known. Choosing to stand over sit he heard the rich Second Earther, Tony Varon, asking the Nurse for medical assistance.

Perking up before the Nurse had a chance too, "Mr Varon. If you have a burn I'd be happy to treat it myself." Lukas' signature hollow smile spread across his face.

A sidewards smirk spread across his face "Oh if you're offering, I don't see why not, doc." his demeanour was heavy with suggestibility, enough so for the Doctor to truly understand what he meant.

"That's not what I meant, Mr Varon." The Doctor's smile slowly faded to his usual neutral face, Lukas knew Tony understood what he meant, Second Earthers just had a way of choosing to misinterpret things for the sake of their ego.

The Captain herself finally made an appearance after a bit more bickering between the crew. Her presence itself had this aura of authority, not like the faux authority Second Earthers paraded with, this was real authority.

After a bit more bickering about the real purpose of the mission, the Captain again drew attention to herself, detailing the search-and-rescue team that would be boarding the MHS-Desdemona.

Lukas anticipated his own name being called, and it was, he adjusting his tie slightly as his name was called, along with the Nurse, Amelie Schulz, one person however wasn't happy with the crew selection, Meghan Reeves from medical. Known as Elizabeth Lodge to Lukas and the rest of the crew.

A small back and forth between her and the Captain ensured until the Captain put a definitive end to it.

Lukas approached Meghan, "Your services will be better served aboard the SS-Azael, Lodge, we don't even fully know if our servers are needed aboard the MHS-Desdemona." The Doctor's signature shallow smile again made an appearance.

Meghan didn't seem very pleased with Lukas' attempt at reassurance, letting out a slight groan of annoyance, getting up from her seat, notepad in hand, seemingly going somewhere with a look of determination in her eyes.

The Doctor didn't dare pursue her, instead, he made his way to the Nurse, Amelie, "I don't think Mrs Lodge is too happy with the selection of the team."

Without a second thought, the Doctor adjusted his collar and made haste to the mechanical doors, back down the hallways he came, finally reaching the Medbay.

The suits they were assigned admittedly looked very stylish, being the Doctor meant Lukas' suit didn't undergo many changes from the stock suit. Some parts had been strapped tighter to avoid collision during surgery, but other than that the rest of the changes were aesthetic. A white patch with a red cross on either shoulder and a nameplate on the left of the chest that simply read, 'Dr. Zhivago'.

The suit took a bit of time to properly get into but once Lukas was settled in it was actually quite comfortable. He tinkered with the helmet a bit, opening and closing quite a few times just for the heck of it.






♡coded by uxie♡
 
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ravensunset

no thoughts just vibes


It had been just over a week aboard the SS-Azael. And Avi wasn’t complaining, really. If she spent the rest of her life sailing the stars on the ship, she wouldn’t mind so much. She hadn’t quite expected it to be different from the station she called home, but oh, it was. The stars changed before your eyes as the ship moved through space, really moved, not just floated in it. So Avi wasn’t complaining, but, on the other hand, she was desperately curious to learn what they’d find on the MSH-Desdemona, curious enough that it won over any of her other thoughts, and she could feel them getting close.

Avigail was in the lounge that day, electing to sit up on the table instead of in the chairs surrounding it, holding her plate of food and watching the conversation bounce between the other members of the team. Sitting a little behind everyone else, she avoided any comments aimed at her, yet got what she considered a front row seat to Valentine and Tony’s usual banter. And of course, enjoy the food, which tasted like real, actual food, something she wouldn’t have guessed from just looking at the paste.

She’d gotten comfortable, in a way, among the team. Sure, some of them were downright unpleasant, only evidenced further by Tony hitting on whoever happened to catch his gaze, today being Amelia. And others seemed not to have a single entertaining bone in their body, or perhaps just not want to talk to her. And yet, they were all different, which was interesting in it’s own way. Besides, Avigail had spent an entire week with no one but this team, and she wasn’t praying for it to be over, so clearly they were okay. She’d even managed to get a few laughs, though this being her first professional company in years to not have a deep physics background meant adjusting her humor slightly.

Avigail’s lips turned up at Valentine’s comment. The other woman was one of the easiest on the ship to get along with, someone Avi had started trading jokes with practically from the first day, and someone Avi could almost always count on to lighten the mood for her or put someone like Tony back in his place. She found herself looking over at Thalia, almost as if to check if their biologist had found the quip as funny as she did, knowing how a few of Avi’s own jokes had gone right over her head. Avi’s smile widened as her eyes met Lia’s, a smirk on the other woman’s face, able to quiety share the moment.

Before much else could occur, Chapman’s footsteps were heard throughout the halls, and Avigail didn’t try to stop the small groan that escaped her lips. She had a lot of respect for their captain as a captain, sure, it was undeniable that that woman was meant to be a leader; and yet, she sucked all the fun right out of the team, evidenced by the end to the banter and conversation in the room.

Still, Avi’s posture straightened as she got ready for their captain to enter the room, and she set her plate down beside her, eyes alert as Chapman entered the room. The words, of course, were nothing new. Listen to orders, Avigail. You’re a worker, Avigail, use that brain of yours and do only as you’re told. Avi had heard a lifetime’s worth of the sentiment.

Tony and Griff, though, their back and forth caught her interest. Or rather, just enhanced how badly Avigail wanted on board the MSH-Desdemona. There was something there, and she needed to find it. She was brought on board for a reason. Griff might not know or want to tell everything the MHC knew about this mission, but they chose her for a reason, and she--

Wasn’t going to be brought on board. Avi’s shoulders slumped as Chapman finished off her list. Of course, none of the scientists there were to be taken, which made sense, in a way. Hell, unless someone sent their ship into lightspeed or they got knocked into a black hole, Avigail had no clue what she would have to offer to the team, but the MHC wanted an astrophysicist, and she wanted to see the MSH-Desdemona. Lodge spoke up in protest before Avi had the time to, and with how quickly she was shut down, Avi changed her mind on trying, realizing there would be no point to it.

Nikki spoke up and offered the last comment to the leaving team. Avi just hoped she wasn’t too serious about holding down the fort. As the words finished, the mechanical door opened, and Chapman left the lounge. Avi picked her plate back up, and surveyed the remaining team members for a second before hopping off of the table.

Before much of the chosen crew had the chance to leave, Avigail walked over to Laura, their mechanical engineer. Avi had found she shared many of her interests and the woman wasn’t awful to talk to, other than her relative lack of Avigail’s more carefree persona. That only made her all that more fun to tease, of course.

“Sorry you have to leave all the fun to fix an old comms system,” Avi placed a hand on the other woman’s shoulder in an exaggerated and all too obviously fake show of sympathy, hiding her own disappointment at having to stay on the Azael under a pretense of staying behind being the favourable option, “We’ll try not to have too much of a good time all on our own here,” She finished with an again overly exaggerated sigh, the faint smile playing out on her lips after giving away the joke perhaps a little too easily.


Avigail Moradi.
the astrophysicist
status? healthy.
mood? impatient, slightly disappointed, bored.
location? The SS-Azael's lounge.
interactions? Laura Koehl, RIPSaidCone RIPSaidCone
coded by incandescent

 

Lekiel

Two Thousand Club
Supporter








collabs: ThatNewGuy ThatNewGuy

” Laws are for the strong to overcome and for the weak to hold dearly close. ”

☤​

An exquisite eyebrow arched as the woman of the hour made some final remarks before adjourning their ‘townhall’ briefing. The nurse lingered by the counter, leaning with an elbow placed on the smooth chrome. She was dressed in a nondescript navy sweater, tawny tresses fettered in a loose ponytail and a plastic ballpoint pen with the words ‘PANACEA'. Flight Nurses Incorporated’ inked along its side twiddling between thumb and forefinger.

Ruby lips pursed as she recollected the main points of their meeting as was her habit. Even so, there really wasn’t much to go about, a concern seemingly shared by their sleazy software engineer who voiced his opinion to the bumbling Pritchard. But as much as she wanted to agree with Varon’s exasperation, the man tested the nurse’s tolerance for dipshits; which thankfully was quite high considering her work experience. She had chosen to respond to his earlier suggestive remark with the exaggerated eye roll manoeuvre.

But as for dear old Griffy. She’d only known him for a bit over 5 days and already found his hapless puppy-dog ways exquisitely adorable; especially the way his blue eyes shifted when she spoke with him. She wondered if he knew more than he was letting on, or if he really was left lurching in the dark.

Amelie caught the Welshman glancing in her direction and the corners of her mouth curled languidly in a warm smile. Perhaps she would find time to wiggle some information out of him. . . Or maybe it didn’t matter at all since they’d be finding out anyway in a couple of hours.

"I don't think Mrs Lodge is too happy with the selection of the team."

She didn’t need to look to recognize that Dr Zhivago had come up to her. Familiarizing herself with her colleagues, even if temporary ones, was second nature to the nurse.

The corners of her lips curled into a slight smirk at his comment, “oh I bet. . .”, she didn’t say much else, but the way her voice trailed off hinted that the nurse gave more thought to Ms Lodge’s peculiar behaviour than was apparent.

Lukas began heading in the direction of the medbay, no doubt to make his preparations and she made to follow him. But on the way out the sliding doors, she passed by their resident tall dark and charming soldier boy. The one who’d the audacity to play eye games with her under Captain Chapman’s hawklike gaze.

A quickie before business seemed inevitable.

“Hey,” she nudged him with her elbow, “looks like we’re up Mister Carreira, gonna need you to watch my back out there,” she quipped, a grin brightening her face.

Cave's cheek tugged up with the trademark, roguish smile when he turned to face her. Gaze warm and inviting, scattering the artificial light. It glistened with soft greens and browns locked in a dark halo of his irises. "Me watch your back, moça?" Gesture coming off causal when his body breached her personal space and he pulled on the hem of her shirt. Like a boy in the kindergarten. "Damn girl, I was hoping you'd be the one watching my ass."

Amelie let out a throaty chuckle at Cave's retort, "watch your hands buddy," she made a playful show of waving his hands away when she felt the tug on her sweater, but despite her tone, her tawny eyes glittered impishly, "your ass? I'm not sure there's much to look at there. . ."

The tip of the pink tongue flicked against his bottom lip. Before he made a clicking sound by the corner of his mouth, indicating fake disappointment. "How about..." He turned side to her with a silly grin, playfully exposing his nicely shaped rear. "You touch then instead?"

She fixed him with a mock frown even as a smirk turned the edges of her lips, "you are absolutely incorrigible." The nurse turned to leave, but not before casting a few words over her shoulder as she made her way out the sliding doors, "keep dreaming about it- see you in an hour."

"I don't even know what the word means, gostosa!"

☤​

“Depress loading clip until the suction pipe pops out. Uncap foam canister and attach nozzle to the pipe. Once the attachment is secure, push canister into the slot until you hear a sharp-”

click

She heard the telltale click followed by a hiss as the loading indicator of the Trauma Foam Injector (TFI) lit green. “Adjust pressure and viscosity settings according to foam specifications. Indicator will light blue when the injector is primed and ready.” After the push of a few buttons on the handheld device, sure enough, the indicator flashed a steady sapphire.

Amelie brought her left hand forward, aimed the TFI and clicked the trigger. A steady stream of cloud white foam diffused onto the back of her wrist. She brought her hand up for a closer inspection mouthing a silent count as after exactly fourteen seconds, the whipped cream looking foam shrank and hardened into something akin to pliable silicone. “Neat,” the nurse nodded her head, seemingly impressed.

PANACEA certainly spared no expense to equip their flight nurses. While the Certified Nurse Practitioner (CNP) was no stranger to Portable TFI’s let alone the wonders of Trauma Foam, having been trained in the trauma and emergency department herself, this was the first time she held such a comparatively small TFI. This was barely larger than an industrial nail gun while those she was used to required an additional shoebox-sized foam primer. The device in her hand was worth more than her salary for a whole year, before taxes.

Turning to a couple of half-opened carton boxes on the steelwork table beside her, she grabbed a couple of foam canisters from them and inspected the labels.

“Hey Doc,” the nurse quizzed, she knew Lukas was in the Medbay making his own preparations for the boarding, “Nanomed™ or AstraSanitas™?” She turned towards him with a foam canister in each hand and held them up for him to see, “I placed an order request for both cause I wasn’t sure which one you’d prefer- personally, I’m used to Nanomed but I heard AstraSanitas upgraded their formulation for more efficient spread.”

Getting Miller’s input, she proceeded to fill a side pouch with several canisters of foam. After some final checks, she headed over to the corner where her protective suit hung on a rack, pulling her sweater over her head as she went, not bothering to change in the toilet despite being clad only in a black bra and tights. Other than the fact that her back was turned to him, whatever interaction she’d had with doctor Zhivago the past few days were nothing short of mature and professional so she didn’t really feel the need to take a walk. Folding her sweater neatly onto the shelf, she pulled on a black form-fitting thermal and pressure regulator before beginning the process of fixing up her outer suit.

The protective suit was one of the newer models, cutting down on bulk without sacrificing function. Its outer synthetic polymer fabric was painted mostly white with pink linings in the colours of PANACEA, the flight nurse’s organisation she’d signed up with and a red medical cross band on the left arm.

“Could you help me with the back?” Amelie called out to her colleague as she held her long hair to the side.

She waited until he approached before giving voice to a niggling thought, not sure why she felt the need to lower her voice a notch, “any guesses about what we’re going to find?”

For the rest of the remaining time, Amelie would help Lukas with his own preparations where necessary and finish up their prep before following him out the Medbay to join the others.









the nurse



amelie.













♡coded by uxie♡
 

spacecowboys

exo soldiers







Lt. C. "Cassy" Carreira








location: SS-Azael's lounge




status: relaxed&ready











  • ://ACT_ONE_WARM_WELCOME


    Her melanin-soaked, honey hues kept smiling down at him. Dimness of the low lit bedroom turned them into smoked caramel. Just as warm and sweet as Amelie could be once the vehement dance of their fiery bodies would dip them into bliss. Moist skin grazed with the cool waft of the AC, radiating sex and notes of orange that her heated skin seemed to emanate.

    Unruly locks like dark chocolate in the shadowed space. Shimmering with accents of cinnamon swirls when she'd turn to the sun-imitating light. Cave liked it when she wore her hair loose, a perfect frame of a beautiful picture. It could tell him a story with every crest by her eyes, with every upward twitch of kiss-swollen lips.

    He wondered...did they taste like citrus too?


    Tony's laughter pulled him out of another daydream and the mention of the "soldier boys" brought him back completely. Leaving nothing but a ghostly touch against his lip. Cave was manspreading next to Valentine, arms propped on each side to the back of the couch, one leaned behind the nape of girl's neck. His bronze cowboy hat rested over a stripe of dark hair, tilted back. "Dibs on what? She's like a sister, Varon." The little sparkle in his jovial hues and the smile-curled lips implied that maybe it wouldn't stop him...if she wanted it.


    Cave's body twitched with a burst of short, sincere laughter and he momentarily clasped his arm around Lacasa's neck. Mocking a choke-hold after she indicated he and Denzel could bone the asshole. Metaphorical one. I mean… Flashing healthy-looking teeth at the older male the soldier joined the joke-fest. "Think it would be more than a minor burn once we done with you, papi." Which, in all honesty, probably would be no joke for any of a more vanilla soul that entered without knocking...


    He giggled at Valentine's next "question". Spine easily molding back, relaxing as much as possible against the uncomfortable sofa. The image of Amelie touching Tony's "little burn" was a total turn off but it soon faded. Leaving just the nurse's pretty face in his sight. He winked at her when she met his hazel eyes. Then his attention was snatched by their leader and his lascivious smile shrunk to the usual, gentle curve.


    He listened to the others' questions. Questions he already knew the answer to. The one stating there were no definite answers. He only wondered if the crew was ready for what he and Denzel knew they might find. Their objectives were clear either way, he just hoped nobody would get in the "crossfire".


    Carreira's last name rung in his ears, making man's brows furrow when it was not followed by Sullivan's. He glanced at his partner, watching Denzel's predatory gaze narrow. But there was nothing lustful in those dirty green eyes. The taller man was visibly not buying the bullshit excuse for splitting them apart. Yeah… Cave wasn't happy either. The news swept the usual soft expression right off his face, turning it to the one of a serious professional now staring back at Chapman. Leaving half of the best prepared duo behind but taking civilians on the recon job? That's just asking for trouble.










coded by weldherwings.





Lekiel Lekiel
idiot idiot
 

spacecowboys

exo soldiers







Sgt. D. "Sunny" Sullivan








location: SS-Azael Lounge




status: pissed off











  • ://ACT_ONE_WARM_WELCOME


    Keen, dark-green orbs steadily trained on the center of attention. Always vigilant, poised to act. Sullivan knew that woman, he knew what she was about. Was she going to cram in the way of his and Carreira's objectives? Did she perceive their goals might stop aligning? Denzel didn't give a fuck, he didn't consider the bridges yet to be crossed.

    Until her first mistake. Making him stay behind with the sheep? Fucking stupid. But he didn't voice it, he didn't have to. His hawkey glare was sending enough of a message. Bitch was going to regret this if the Command's intel was right. On the other hand, fuck it, it usually wasn't. He'll just kick back some more while Cassy is babysitting the fucking school trip.

    Still charged with anger he watched the group pour out of the belly of the ship like scattering ants, into their posts and quarters. He clocked the two by the counter. Cassy had hots for the nurse, of course he did. Like a fat-muscled feline, Denzel pulled away from the pillar he was braced against, strutting towards the lovebirds.

    "I don't even know what the word means, gostosa!" His brother laughed when the taller soldier stopped beside him, leering at the woman with a dirty smirk. "I heard she has a thing for little pricks." Cave shouldered him without a shade of animostity. "C'mon. We gotta talk..." His voice less cheerful compared to how it was a moment ago with the nurse.

    Yeah, they had to fucking talk. Just in case this time the Command was right...









coded by weldherwings.


 

mangomilk

big oof






y. borgov




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vessel



anima








His long wiry fingers crawled over the metal surface. Like naked branches they swayed onto his equipment. The warmth his hands dispensed formed moisture on the table like breath on a mirror: there, but gone in a moment. The microbiologist’s big brown eyes darted across the room at the two-story radiator.

He remembered day one like it was only 120 hours ago.
Dr. Zhivago and Schulz drew blood from each crew member before commencing their journey. Just like that a pretty line formed and everyone got their jolly little puncture. Yanan – as good as gold – waited next to the practicers with a black box in his pale hands where Schulz and Zhivago dumped the sample for his further use one by one. "I’m more than thrilled for the opportunity to minister our bodily property. However, Pritchet it was?"
"Pritchard."
"Pritchard. What for? If I understood correctly, you don't want me to examine certain DNA strands. Aside from that, I'm afraid it would be illegal to proceed with such actions without the crew's written consent..." Not that he cared, really.
"Oh, uh, well actually…it was included in the fine print when the crew agreed to this expedition."


The information gathered in the last few days resulted in the knowledge that those samples had no use as of now. It was reserved for emergencies where further tests would be crucial. Despite coming up with too many scenarios which might lead for such events to happen, Yanan was not confident any of those would vindicate. But who’s to say? His profession found a spot on the expedition after all.

After intermitting the intense stare-battle between him and the radiator – which Yanan felt like he won – he pushed the microscope to his left. As the man rose from his seat, he slouched over to the radiator. The tip of his nose pressed against the freezing glass. On the other side of the glass in cryogenic sleep erythrocytes, thrombocytes, leucocytes and blood plasma waited in in each sample to be discovered what they were all about. He could surmise the names scribbled by Zhivago on the tubes, barely but enough.

"Hmm," he hummed. Who did he want to read? Sullivan? His eerie but vigorous demeanor piqued his interest. He was rather good-looking as well. Or rather Schulz? She could hide behind polished facades but her blueprint would not. The watch on his wrist stroke its alarm. His face yielded from the glass, the tip of his nose now red.

It was time. The captain had ordered them into the lounge. His bushy brows raised as he tensed his lips in a motion resembling a shrewd smile. Just in time, he thought. "You are safe for now, love." He pulled up his arms and shoulders. No can do. He patted the radiator’s surface and left his laboratory, locked. His shoes squelched slightly on the clean ground. Passing quarter after quarter, he noticed one lone open door. Half of his face allowed a glance into the tidy room. In the middle of the room, Thalia was occupied with what seemed to be a study. Single strands of her curly fro fell into her face as she appeared to be immersed in a zone of complete concentration he knew all too well from his own passions.

"What’cha got there?" The man held onto the frame of her door, only half of his body peaking through. "Oh! Hello, Dr. Borgov." He did not mean to disturb her performance. He also did not mean for her to be late for their meeting.

"I’m just…writing notes for what will eventually become an archive file for the Jewel Beetle," Baldwin blinked and raised the small glass box with the insect. "I tried to convince the executive board at the AEPI to preserve it but, despite my efforts, they have decided to let it go extinct. People should still remember it, though, so I’ve taken it upon myself to ensure that there will be ample documentation of it after its extinction."

Yanan raised his slouchy back for once, revealing his height as he glided over the floor. He took no efforts really in pulling his feet above the ground. "Seems like an important job to do." The scientist reached for the box which contained a beautiful specimen of a Bruprestidae. Its vibrant iridescent greens deemed it worthy of its name. Yanan held the box as close to his eye until the box hit the surface of his glasses. As if that wasn’t enough, he shook the container like a child with a snow globe. "Woah. Be careful please."
"Ah- My bad. I just wanted to see him dance a little," he grinned as he gave the box back.

"Anyway. It’s time for the meeting. Would you care to join me, miss?" His choice of words were something out of an old movie he used to watch with Arlo back in their college days. Between powdery candy and sour neon fluids, their eyes would reflect the screen.

"I suppose I should put this down for the moment,“ she said. Within the same breath, she laid her notebook to the side. "I don't want to be late." – "We’ll make it in time." Yanan watched her movements as Thalia did a speed run cleaning up her working space. "Yes. Let’s go."

His hands folded comfortably behind his back as they made their way towards the lounge. The long hallway was designed in a clean, sterile outlook. A truly liminal space with the two of them sharing each others company as the only comfort between the clasped walls. His steps were stretched and fast-paced, leaving Thalia little options but to either increase her speed or her step length. Perhaps both was necessary to keep up with Borgov.

A whistle clean and sharp blew from his pursed lips, opposing his usual playful and biting accent. The walls channeled the ringing sounds in an illuminating echo. The melody resembled Shchedryk, a ukrainian folk song he remembers all too well from evenings with his father. Although the song was better known as its english version Carol of the Bells, his father had always stressed the importance of honoring tradition. Preserving stories and songs was just as much tradition that the youngest Borgov could promise. The off-white lab coat draping his shoulders swayed with his movements but no sound resonated from him, aside from the clicking soles of his shoes and his eerie whistle.

The heavy door to the lounge was closed. Yanan paused in front but it was lesser to give Thalia time to catch up, and more to recharge for their big entrance. He grabbed the door at both of its metallic handles and pushed it open, making both of the doors bang against the wall behind them. Note for Pritchard: secure door stoppers for impulsive entries by Borgov.

"Now look at you, Varon. You look infernally dapper today," he pointed at their software-engineer and approached the group already assembled. He took a stance next to Valentine and gifted her a goofy smile before complementing her as well. "Pritchard has a point! No doubt, Valentine...," he paused as if trying to catch his breath. "You look best." Within the energetic banter everyone took their turn, before the harsh steps seemed to slice open the floor upon impact. The kind of steps that everyone had witnessed as a child when one was supposed to sleep and someone would approach the room in a hurry. The mere memory of something he had deemed forgotten let his skin ascend in goosebumps.

She’s only going to say this once... While Borgov had to discipline himself to give the captain’s speech a thorough listen, his eyes trailed off towards the rest of the crew. The fog of his mind cleared as his attention was drawn back by the raising voices around. "…But why send scientists?" He raised his brows in utter disbelief as if Tony just questioned his competence. Tony however was an endearing individual in his eyes and his addition let him simmer down again.

He watched the scene with his hands in his pockets and kept quiet unlike his usual willingness to converse. While Chapman assigned the first teams for further investigation and contact, he threw his head back. How boring. "I also want to do something," he mumbled in the air. As Elizabeth spoke up, he remained glad he was not the one to mouth his boredom out loud and directed at the Captain herself. As he was not called to prepare himself, he flopped down on one of the couches that were too hard to really be comfortable. "Contact in an hour, huh? That’s plenty of time if you ask me."





♡coded by uxie♡
 

xayah.

i return stronger than i left
mood :
Tense & Anxious

location :
The SS-Azael's Lounge
outfit :
mentions :
Krill Krill

interactions :
Nikki
Jensen
;; erick
if the brief sideways glances and small, silent steps away from him were anything to go off of, it was clear that a gruff, unshaven man with the deepest of dark circles under his eyes was not exactly the typical passenger of a spaceship. around him were scientists and soldiers galore, fitting their informal titles as the lifeblood and protectors of a ship appearance-wise, and the very people judging him at the moment. erick was no stranger to being the center of attention, suspicious and judgmental looks included, yet something about their rising suspicions unsettled the man. perhaps it was because the success of this mission, his entire reason for getting on a ship and being sent into space with complete strangers—many of whom most likely detested those on Earth—depended on their cooperation. maybe it was just because a ship does not run without everyone's cooperation. the disappearance of the mhs-desdemona could've been a testament to that.

speaking of the mhs-desdemona, erick's rough, calloused hands tightened around the ring hung securely around his neck. now aboard the ship and somewhat settled in his quarters, the dane became aware of his tense heart and even tenser hand—so tense in fact that his fist turned white and blunt nails left deep indents on the palm. a deep sigh—containing all the hopes, prayers, worries, and curses of an anxious father—escaped his lips as he loosened up his grip on the necklace and lightly spun it around to glance at the inscription on the inside: a scratchy A & J now faded from the many times he'd rubbed the two letters with his thumb over the past year. two letters representing the world, the universe even, to him, and now they were the only thing left.

"Dad, do you think mommy's out there somewhere? there's so many stars up there that she must be looking over us from one of them. maybe second earth even?"

a young annelise, still reddish and swollen under the eyes from nights of crying, sat in erick's lap, arms wrapped around her father's neck: so small, so fragile, and clearly trying her hardest to keep it all together. all he could do was nod, unwilling to crush her imaginations—the small glimmer of hope that keeps a child sane after trauma.


was that where it all went wrong? was that why she was now missing? because of a single gesture he made? the thought was crushing, and as erick headed to the lounge with the other passengers, it was all that lingered in his mind, clouding his thoughts and attention span. so much so that when the captain finished her speech, erick found himself alone—not that he wasn't before—but more alone than he just was. as the crowd of passengers began thinning and spreading out, erick quickly looked around. was he supposed to do something? the clear scientists of the group began grouping together, seemingly ready to head somewhere, and it was clear that wasn't his place. anything to do with academics were never his forte.

just out of the corner of his eyes though was a slight gleam, and it disappeared as fast as it appeared. whipping his head around, erick squinted at the swift and deft movements of a fellow passenger lingering on the couch. was that... a flask? of alcohol? the gall—maybe carelessness—of his fellow passenger surprised the dane who had a strange inkling to go after her. if she was holding down the fort, erick assumed he had a similar order from the captain. he needed to figure out what was just announced, and who best to ask than the person who seemed strangely carefree? following her to the bridge, erick announced his presence from a few feet away, trying his best not to surprise her.

"erick jensen. i missed a great bit of the captain's orders. do you mind sharing what was said and some of your..." his eyes trickled down to her hands in her pockets. alcohol made for loose lips and good company, and with the amount of stares he received from most of the passengers, erick needed an exorbitant amount to get them to consider him good company. hopefully this would be the start of it.
coded by reveriee.
 

Krill

Lurker in Darkness
The halls of the ship existed just beyond the perceptions of space and time with which Nikki was comfortable. They seemed to span no distance, to be crammed in like mycelia spinning from a fungal core, overlapping and undercutting one another in the desperate pursuit of a perfect matrix, every inch of space leached dry for its utility - but her feet dragged like molasses, her eyes disappeared into the clean lines of wall decorp; her mental map of this space blurred into the memories of muscles and she tugged herself through a maze she wouldn't fathom. A finger trailed along a patch of wall - and then it didn't. She sidled onto the bridge.

"...some of your..."

She turned at the same rate as the smile that slid across her face, such that when she faced the man behind her, the querying smirk was solid - not a hint of the blankness it had overcome remained.

Tired, she thought. The man always looked tired, in an infectious way, borne out of long, exhausting recollections. Nikki resented that presence, the inescapability of it, the weight of it. She resented the surrender to it - the admittance of, what? Despair? Regret? Blame, affixed to ill fortune, godly intervention, powers beyond control?

He disappeared into the background, broke from the social fabric, let himself be nothing in the midst of a crew jostling with each other for... whatever people jostled for, in the absence of a goal.

He was doing something different, following her here. Something new.

"Mind going numb in your old age, eh? Thought they would have caught that in medical." She glanced down to her pocket, where his eyes had led, and pulled out the edge of the empty flask. "And you know this stuff won't help with that, right?"

xayah. xayah.
 

RIPSaidCone

tolmie






Laura Koehl




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Perturbator



Technoir









Head kept at a downward angle, and concentrated expression kept hidden from the rest of the crew by her protective curtains of dark-brown hair, Laura was entirely consumed in a personal project, as she had been for the past several days. One of the few things that could bring solace when on one of these kinds of jobs, far enough from home that she didn't want to think about it, and surrounded by strangers, though the fact this wasn't her first rodeo did help with what was generally an otherwise mediocre state of affairs.

Tinkering with a small, metallic blue box, slim tools operated by delicate fingers picked away at the miniscule electronics and circuitry that could be seen from the confines of its opened case. It was a radio-- and no it was not her primary one-- but rather a spare that she'd brought specifically to work on during her time on the Azael. Difficult to accomplish, she'd picked the task of attempting to strengthen its in-built signal enhancer, to give it a wider radius and clearer connection, so far she had only achieved minor success, though it would not have been a challenge otherwise.

The artificial ambience of a spaceborne vessel was routinely broken up by the continuing, and in some cases erupting conversations around the woman, much to her chagrin. Despite her best efforts to mostly ignore them, she couldn't resist momentarily gazing up at one or two members of the crew whenever something that stirred particular curiosity was uttered. Running a pale hand through her bangs, the engineer's attention-- and relative isolation-- was finally broken with the appearance of the captain. A hard-headed woman to say the least, not that Laura had much issue with that.

Neatly putting aside her project, deep blue eyes-- briefly squinting to adjust once more to the ship's noticeably aged lighting-- followed by its accompanying photogenic face turned upward to view the ship's leading authority as she detailed their task. It'd already been a week apparently, having passed much too quickly for the Swiss engineer, and they were seemingly making their last approach to the target in question, the MHS Desdemona.

Mind swiftly falling down the rabbit hole of all the possibilities as to what happened to their mystery ship, it was only when she heard her surname announced by the captain that the engineer was pulled back to the here and now, blinking as her thoughts scrambled to recall the prior five seconds of missed information. Holding in an overly dramatic sigh of relief when she was able to find the elusive memories. She was part of the boarding team. Got it. She was meant to check the comms and life support systems. Got it.

Laura pushed herself up from her seat, fixing her navy blue jumpsuit and intending to make her way to her quarters, where much--though not all-- of her necessary equipment would be waiting. If only it were so simple. "Sorry you have to leave all the fun to fix an old comms system," Avigail, the Azael's resident astrophysicist and perhaps one of the few vessel residents whom she shared at least something in common with, greeted her with. The corners of her mouth turned up, and Laura nonchalantly gave a shrug of her shoulders, rolling her eyes somewhat endearingly as the physicist continued.

"Well, what can you do, eh? And I appreciate you taking the effort to limit your fun on my behalf." She retorted in slightly accented English, although it was close enough to fluent, a relic from her past American employers. Gathering her partially disassembled radio, and the tools picked for it from the table, her eyes gave a quick glance to them before she made her way past Avigail. "Now, if you'll excuse me I have to go prepare my things. I do hope you keep a lid on the excitement here, until I get back." And with that she vacated the lounge, knowing it wouldn't take herself too long to get ready for the job ahead. Curious, and only slightly nervous.






♡coded by uxie♡
 

jay - arbiter

the alpine witch



thalia.





































  • mood



    dissatisfied
















In the white light of her quarters, Thalia’s pen moved quickly and carefully across her pad. A small glass container containing a little, iridescent insect rested in front of her. The field biologist wasn’t a fan of her own blocky handwriting, but she preferred it for this intimate task: drafting notes for the archive of a species soon to be extinct. Penmanship also allowed her to insert her sketches of the specimen’s form in the margins, something she enjoyed more than she ever really told anyone.

Chrysochroa fulminans. The type species of its genus and the most famous member of the family Buprestidae, known as the “Jewel Beetles.” They are most commonly iridescent green in color, sometimes with violet or orange tints. Adults are typically 30 to 40 millimeters in length. Before the extreme degradation of the Earth, they were commonly found across Southeast Asia and Oceania: Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines. They disappeared from Malaysia first, then Indonesia. We found the last few remaining specimens—including the one in front of me now—in the wastelands of the Philipp—

"What’cha got there?"


Thalia started, then relaxed once she realized it was just Yanan. Lowering her pen, she turned towards the door to greet him. She found him easier to talk to than most crewmates due to his occupation as a fellow scientist and his ability to look past her social peculiarities.

When explaining the AEPI’s call to let the Jewel Beetle go instinct to Yanan, Thalia felt her throat tighten a little. The decision was still a fresh wound to her. The day she found out, she had sulked for the rest of her shift and flopped down on her bed tearfully when she had returned home, bitter at how unfair it all seemed. She had come so far and worked so hard, and, alas, there were still times where she couldn’t preserve life the way she wished to. “It’s simply not an important species, Dr. Baldwin,” her superiors had said. “Second Earth can do without it. We can’t waste resources keeping it alive just because you feel personally invested in its survival.” The only thing that had hurt more than their jab at her professionalism was their failure to see the bigger picture as Thalia did. The preciousness of Chrysochroa fulminans.



Thalia followed up behind Yanan closely on their way to the lounge, appreciating his quick pace since the worry of being late still gnawed at her slightly. They entered the room in the midst of banter among the other crew members. Relieved that Chapman hadn't arrived yet, the field biologist took a seat near the group quietly (and a little awkwardly) and tuned in to the conversation.

Lia’s eyes whipped from Tony to Griff to Valentine as words were traded. She found herself grimacing when Tony spoke, barely able to hide her distaste. She didn’t bother suppressing her satisfied smile when the pink-haired girl took a jab at him and the curly-haired comms officer quipped at the man’s expense. She found herself meeting eyes with Avigail, who was also smirking, and they shared a moment of understanding. Thalia and the astrophysicist had begun getting along better recently. They didn’t always see eye-to-eye, but Lia rather enjoyed when they did—this humorous moment being a prime example.

Then Chapman entered, and Thalia turned in her direction to listen carefully. When Tony brought up the question of why scientists were sent, she thought to herself: Because someone up at MHC thinks there’s a chance that something aboard the Desdemona will require scientific investigation. Thalia had her suspicions about this mission but kept them to herself for the moment, not wishing to annoy Chapman with fruitless inquiry. After all, the best way to satisfy her curiosity would be to simply get aboard the ship.

Which was… not going to happen. Thalia was beyond disappointed. Apparently, Elizabeth was similarly dissatisfied with not being chosen to board the Desdemona, but, after watching the young woman’s interaction with Chapman result in nothing, Thalia figured that the Captain’s choices were final.

Once Chapman left the room, Thalia’s shoulders slumped. She stood up from her seat and began pacing, her mind quickly turning out questions about the Desdemona and the mission. Situating herself somewhere between Yanan, who was flopped down on a couch, and Avigail, who had been talking to the now-departed Laura, Thalia vocalized one of these questions: “Do you suppose that we’ll be brought on to the MHS-Desdemona later?” Not bothering to lower her voice so Griff wouldn’t hear, she went on: “Surely, we were employed for reasons beyond someone just wanting to be prepared? The question had no venom. Only genuine, if not intense, curiosity.

The query was open for either of the other scientists to answer—or someone farther away could chime in if they pleased.































adult contemporary



sasami










♡coded by uxie♡
 

lovers

fools on parade











VAR., Y.



Maybe it was the taste of the air. Maybe it was the dull white walls patterned with decorative ridges, the low seats with flat backs, the particles of dust gliding in the air threatening to intrude into his imagination. The looming déjà-vu of the ship: he's seen this model before, he thinks, in the dark. The clean lines and blocky architecture coated in dust, the ones who once crowded around the table long gone. Maybe it was the memories.

Whatever it was, Var felt a distinct unease spread over his shoulders. The phantom, freezing blocks of ice resting on his shoulders melted into water, dripping into his bones to soak and send a sensation of cold throughout his body. He fixed a stare forward, hoping it conveyed his half-listening and faux solidity, not his mind grasping at a feeling slipping through his fingers.

Surrounded by strong-spirited soldiers, clever but detached professionals, and the officers of the corporation who agreed to allow him passage, Var didn't want to show his unease. Establishing himself as a man of whims and emotional drives was not something he was keen on; he was on a job, seeking a man worth a fortune. The ends would justify the means. He had spent too long letting the reverse of the phrase justify his terrible actions, and he was better now.

As though the feeling of being haunted by himself was a head-cold, and not a constant inner turmoil that required conscious guarding. He needed to keep his mind clear, focused, attuned only to his job. The week on the ship was a transitional phase. Now, Chapman allowed him an opening to investigate where his target was. It was an easy enough objective, never mind he was allowing someone else to set up an objective for him. Carreira developed a friendly rapport with him. Yeon-Woo was an unknown, but her title as a well-known hero earned her his respect.

He thought about speaking with them, then decided against it. Carreira seemed busy, and Yeon-Woo seemed as though her mind was elsewhere. Instead, he left with a brow subconsciously furrowed, powered by the will of him forcing his instincts down. The familiar knife of self-doubt was beginning to graze at him, the edge threatening to slip beneath his skin and bring out his thoughts: a self-taught bounty-hunter at the helm with a soldier and a celebrated veteran. Like a child, investigating ships in the dark.

Dreading it.

He tried not to think too much about what it meant, and suited up.










CONFLICTED









ss-azazel lounge









none
















nine lives

 

idiot

𝘣𝘶𝘳𝘯 𝘣𝘢𝘣𝘺.




://ACT_ONE: THE ARRIVAL




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gazelle twin



nocturne








://VALENTINE_LACASA_

In one of his sober moments, Valentine’s father explained that God possessed a magical paintbrush that was capable of creating anything. He painted everything into existence, from her favourite ice-cream flavour — mint choc-chip with cherry swirls — to the unruly mop sat atop a young Valentine’s head.

Yet, it made Valentine question the ugly things God painted.

Why did he paint a bottomless bottle into her father’s hand, weekly hospital visits and never-ending tears in Valentine’s eyes? Her entire childhood was painted in nothing but dull and hideous colours.

She tried to amend what God had done, sketching colourful scenes of non-existent childhood memories. Day after day, the crayons soon turned to nubs, the edges of the paper curling as the stack of drawings faded from the sun beaming in her small bedroom window.

It took eight years for Valentine to realise God didn’t exist.

Now in the present, Valentine couldn’t help imagine God with that magical paintbrush; painting broad strokes of blue, yellow and pink hues over the black canvas that was outer space. In the centre of the painting was a monstrous colony ship with stars haphazardly speckled around it. The MHS-Desdemona. About bloody time, Valentine thought.

“Wait...” Valentine squinted out the bridge window, enamoured by what she saw. She had never seen anything like this before. Dozens of tethers snaked down from under the Desdemona, piercing the surface of a planet chunk that mirrored the size of the colony ship. Yet, everything remained in place, as though frozen in time. Below a planet was in view, a gigantic crater present; Valentine assumed that was where it came frombut how?

“They are gravity tethers,”
Tony begun, as though reading her mind, “planet cracking they call it. Attaching the tethers to a planet, it is capable of literally ripping a chunk of the planet into orbit.” Tony explained smugly, happy to be a know-it-all.

“Thanks genius...but why?” Valentine twirled her seat in his direction, thick brow raised, “and why isn’t the ship being dragged down?” The colony ship sat unmoving, as though frozen in time.

“Planet cracking is mainly used to mine valuable resources from the comfort of one’s ship.” Valentine was surprised how much Tony knew; she knew he was a computer nerd but not some engineer type. Tony must of read the surprise on her face as he continued, "my eldest was obsessed with these things, she always wanted to work on a ship with one. It is pretty cool stuff." A small, genuine smile replaced his smug expression.

"Tony the Varon has children? I would of never guessed, how about you Nikki?" Valentine quipped, eyes gazing towards the pilot in the helm, "...then again you're too busy talking about yourself."

"Real funny, Lacasa."
Tone drier than ever. "As I was saying before I was rudely interrupted. The gravity tethers can then target a specific area and extract the sample into the ship’s mining deck. So, to answer your question, gorgeous, the ship is equipped with a high-tech gravity centrifuge which keeps the ship stable.”

Interesting, Valentine thought, but that means…

“The gravity centrifuge thing-o is still active then,” Valentine noted.

“Ding-ding, gorgeous, seems you aren't just a pretty face. Which means the crew didn’t plummet to their death at least. Could of called it a day if they did." Tony scoffed and Valentine couldn't help but roll her eyes. He really seemed to just care for himself.

Having her maximum dose of Tony, Valentine spun back around to the console.

“Now, let's get this rodeo started,” Valentine adjusted her reliable, old-fashioned comms headset onto her bouncy mane.

After pressing a few buttons, Valentine spoke.

“MHS-Desdemona, this is the SS-Azael, we are requesting entrance aboard the flight deck.” Valentine’s methodical, customer-service voice rung in everyone’s MHC-branded earpieces; specifically aimed at Desdemona’s crew.

Silence.

“Do you read me, Desdemona?”

Dead silence.

://RYO_YEON_WOO_

What the hell was she doing?

Ryo took a deep breath, ignoring how shaky it was as the SS-Azael landed with a sold thud. The pilot, Nikki, had gained entry via the Desdemona’s flight deck which was sketchy in itself. Who let them in? And why wasn’t anyone speaking aboard? This is all wrong.

“Helmets will be mandatory until Koehl can verify there are no breaches to life support.” The captain ordered. Ryo hoped it was, these helmets had to have blind spots.

She awkwardly shuffled against the padded walls, the rest of the expedition crew cramming into the airlock chamber. The door closed behind them, the decompression began with a hiss. The soldier resisted the urge to tear the door open and get out of dodge.

Breathe, Ryo, recalling her therapy with Hye-Bin.

Her stomach twisted as everyone’s helmets retracted from their suit and sealed around their heads. Despite the protection the helmet offered, Ryo couldn't help but feel vulnerable.

“Formation is as followed,” Chapman’s voice rung in her earpiece, “I will take the lead with Carreira and Yeon-Woo in second.” Those eyes devoid of colour settled on the others.

“Koehl will follow with the medical crew, Zhivago and Schulz, while Yohannan covers the rear.” The only relief Ryo had was the fact Sullivan had been ordered to stay aboard. Something about that man made her feel uneasy. She had met men like him during her service, they usually ended up getting their squadron killed.

“Ready?” No... Ryo thought, but stiffly nodded with the rest in response to the captain's rhetorical question.

The heavy door opened with another frighteningly loud hiss.

Chapman wasted no time, hunched forwards with her pistol in hand; the captain stepped through the exit and onto the flight deck. Natural instinct kicking in, Ryo's fingers wrapped around the familiar grip of the handgun. Following alongside Carreira, her heavy boots clunked loudly against the Desdemona's interior.

The flight deck was a vast, open space, mimicking an airport of sorts. Several transport ships were scattered around with a scant waiting area for flights and a receptionist desk. The sparse ceiling lights dimly illuminated the path ahead.

A glass panelled room was situated to the right, which Ryo recalled from studying the map, was the tram’s control room. The Desdemona had a tram line snaked throughout each section to aid travel among the sizeable ship.

That was when Ryo realised the deafening silence.

Not a single soul could be found on the flight deck – no passengers eagerly waiting for transport, no bored receptionist or tired pilots manning their ships. Were all space stations like this?

The only sign of life could be found in the strewn about belongings; with bags seated on the cushioned-metal seats and discarded rubbish on the ground.

No. Something was definitely off.

“SS-Azael, do you read me?” Chapman broke the silence.

“We read you, expedition team,” The young comms officer responded, “we are also receiving live coverage from all body cams.” Ryo forgot about the small camera strapped to her chest’s suit. That sleazy man, Tony, had fitted everyone’s suit with a camera.

At the confirmation, the captain signalled for everyone to follow her.

Slowly, but surely, the team made their way into the heart of the flight centre. Situated in the flight lounge, Ryo’s alert eyes darted around.

For something.

Anything.

Just a sign of life on –

Oh my god...


Ryo’s mouth went dry at the sight.

Up ahead the metal floor was smeared in the tell-tale colour of blood. Dark and thick, the bloody mess streaked around the corner and out of view. Up above, the words, 'CARGO BAY'
were printed on the wall with an arrow pointing towards the corridor. Towards the blood.

Ryo swore she could hear something...

Before she could say anything, the captain’s light illuminating from her pistol settled on the blood trail.

“Weapons at the ready,” the captain merely whispered into their headsets, “and silence on the comms.” Her voice was oddly devoid of surprise or shock, Ryo noted. This wasn't her first time either. She tried to take comfort in that, but her hands wouldn't stop shaking.

All she could think of was her squadron. Min-Ha's mouth spurting blood, those sparkling eyes losing all signs of life. Her skin going cold in Ryo's arms. I'm sorry, Yang...

Tightening her grip on the pistol, she clicked off the safety; ignoring the cold sweat beading down her scarred forehead.

What the hell was she doing?

://GRIFF_PRITCHARD_


"If you don't mind me interjecting, Ms Baldwin, the Desdemona was investigating some...important research."
Griff spoke slowly, choosing his words carefully. Remember confidentiality. MHC would have his head if he revealed too much.

"So, yes, I promise you are all here..." pushing up his thick-rimmed glasses as he eyed Borgov, Moradi and the beautiful Baldwin once more. He admittedly was drawn to the the field biologist. Alas, he was focused on the mission and finally getting what he deserved - a promotion. Then again, Griff had to be kidding himself, she probably thought he was a loser. Borgov was probably more her type, he seemed to have a way with words unlike Griff.

The pity party almost infested Griff's fragile mind, yet he realised he never finished speaking...

Eyes on him, he straightened up, grinning nervously, "are...all here for a reason! MHC carefully put this team together." Not true, they actually chose the most likely to accept their proposition but Griff would keep that to himself. He needed to get out of here. He didn't need more embarrassment to recall later when he was alone; ripping at thoughts like old scabs.

Griff knew he reeked of sweat at this point; sweat stains under his crinkled suit's armpits. He was still recovering from the embarrassment that was the crew meeting. The cold, menacing stare from the captain was burned into his skull. He knew she didn't like him. She hated him, he could tell. He didn't even want to think what the rest of the crew thought.

To avoid the questioning he knew was coming, Griff stood up as a quiet rattling sounded above them. It was coming from the bridge and while it wasn't out of ordinary...the rattling was getting louder. Closer.

It was coming from above. The vents? The rattling became more distinct.

Griff swore something was scuttling in the vents. Rats? No, that was impossible. The thought of anything scuttling around gave Griff the shivers.

The scuttling rushed past above them and towards the back of the ship. Then it suddenly stopped.

Clunk.

Metal clanging together? Griff wondered. The sound seemingly came from the med-bay where Dr Imhoff had excused himself. No, no, no. Absolutely not. Griff shook his head to emphasis the thought. There was no way he was going to investigate that.

A high-pitched yelp came from Griff as his phone pinged to life in his hand. His cheeks flushing red.

"I, uh...must answer this. I will leave you all to investigate, I'm sure you're more capable than me." Chuckling awkwardly, Griff scrambled for his phone and swiped open the notification.

It was from MHC headquarters, the message was asking for an update on the expedition. He took the time to construct a message, thinking purposefully about each word. After some thoughtful consideration, Griff pressed send. Yet, the message quickly bounced back. What...

He pressed retry.

Still nothing.

He probably pressed it a dozen times to be met with the same result. How is this possible? Maybe it was just his phone?

He recalled the bridge had access to comms, maybe he could contact MHC headquarters from there?

As though more of a sign to take his exit, he heard a female swear loudly from the other side of the ship. It was towards the crew lodging. Is this ship haunted or something?

Happy to get far away from all the noises, Griff shuffled quickly towards the bridge, leaving the others behind.





♡coded by uxie♡
 

Zerulu

The Real Kanye
Supporter






Dr. Zhivago




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Gustavo Santaolalla



All Gone (seasons)









The Doctor gave an inquisitive look to the Nurse as she held up the two foam canisters, admitadetly he hadn't dealt with trauma foams very often, he wasn't a first responder and his patients were all too far gone for trauma foam to be useful or had already been prepped by a nurse beforehand. Anyhow, he entertained the Nurse's enquiry, "Bring the AstraSanitas, I've had good results from their products."

That was a lie, Zhivago can't recall ever using an AstraSanitas product, he did like the name though. The Doctor turned his attention back to a spreadsheet on his datapad, a chart of names and data filled the lines. It had the names of the crew aboard the SS-Azael, the data was all relatively standard, there were still chances some anomalous readings could be found, though the likelihood of that was relatively low this late into the blood testing.

Closing the data-pad he turned his attention back to his colleague, she was requesting assistance with zipping up her suit at the back. As he approached she inquired about what they would find aboard the ship, he entertained the thought, "Either an incompetent crew or a bloodbath." He finished zipping up Amelie's suit. "That or aliens." He shrugged, he was almost certain they wouldn't find anything aboard the Desdemona, it was a fun thought to entertain, however.

Most of his own preparations were already complete, it was now time to embark on the journey that would turn out to be endlessly more interesting than last thought.

Joined with the rest of the first contact crew, Zhivago already had his helmet closed and ready. He already checked his comms unit prior in the Medbay so he was ready to disembark. The formation Chapman proposed was relatively standard, with the medical crew in the centre followed by one of the soldier types.

The door hissed open, they were on the flight deck, which was surprisingly empty. Zhivago looked around, no one was there, the air was filled with the sounds of breathing from the crew and the heavy steps of their boots.

That all changed when Zhivago caught sight of blood ahead of them, this just got a whole lot more interesting. Captivated by the sight, Zhivago didn't hesitate to hasten himself to inspect the site. His body-cam lights illuminated the splatter, allowing Zhivago to deduce more from it. It wasn't a blood splatter, it was more of a smear, handprints were also present amongst the blood, this was purposeful.

The Captain had already ordered radio silence, though information like this was almost too important to not give, in and ushered voice he spoke over comms, "Captain, this isn't a blood splatter, it's a smear, someone made this, like a work of art, or possibly from dragging a body through." All Zhivago wanted to know now was where the blood came from, and it seemed the Cargo-Bay is where they would find their answers.

Any of the other crew would notice Zhivago's complete lack of emotions present in the situation, carrying the same demeanour of a Second-Earther observing art to purchase for their new beachside mansion.






♡coded by uxie♡
 

ravensunset

no thoughts just vibes


Avigail had settled back down into a spot near Thalia after Laura and the others had left. Her question caught Avigail’s attention, and she turned to face the other woman, the thoughts echoing in her own mind. The biologist’s tone was genuine, curious, in a way that Avi herself didn’t fully understand. If the words had come out of her mouth, they would’ve been an accusation. Thalia’s sincerity, the parts of the other scientist that were so different from her standing out like glowing stars among the parts that were so alike, almost took up more of Avigail’s thoughts than the question she’d asked. Almost. She was certainly not sure what situation could cause Chapman, a practical and serious woman, to call for an astrophysicist to join the Desdemona, and she figured it to be rather unlikely for her to find out.

Before Avi could throw in a joke or speculation, however, Griff interjected, providing a response as useless as his earlier remark. She didn’t bother hiding a roll of her eyes at the words, though they made her wonder. Was he bullshitting, as lost on the matter as the rest of them and trying to seem important, or was he covering up for the MHC? Before Avigail could push him on the topic, a sound began to echo through the lounge. Avigail’s eyes went up to the vents, just as she was sure Griff’s and the others’ did. Avi watched as it passed, from the bridge to them and then towards the back of the ship, where an echoing clunk followed.

Avi’s eyes sparked with excitement, although she knew it was surely just wishful thinking. More likely than not, the ship was just making, well, the sounds of a ship hovering in space, and Avi just really, really wanted an adventure after being left off the Desdemona crew. The next sound was a much more, well, ordinary one, and Avigail didn’t muffle her chuckle at Griff’s yelp. The man exited, and Avigail didn’t even mind that she couldn’t question him about the earlier topic.

“Well,” A smile played out on her lips as she looked between Yanan and Thalia. Yanan, a scientist in a very different field but with many qualities not unlike Avi’s own, and whose boredom Avi had noticed as he’d sat on a couch, would be on board for some investigation. At very least he’d want to attempt to make some fun out of the situation, his excitable and attention grabbing manner something that Avi enjoyed seeing on the ship. And Thalia, while less prone to jokes than the two of them, was so clearly driven by curiosity that Avi knew it would take next to nothing to get her on board,

“As Griff said, looks like we’re the capable investigation crew. I guess we just have to go check it out,” Avigail’s tone dripped with a dry humour as pushed herself up, briefly scanning the room. The only one else left in the lounge was Sullivan, but the soldier was a bit of a mood-killer, so Avigail elected to ignore his presence, though keeping her tone loud enough to be heard by anyone in the vicinity, “Besides, Captain’s finally gone, ship’s completely ours. I say we find some trouble, and if the noises were nothing, we cause some.”

Avi wasn’t expecting, really, to find or get to do anything. It was an empty challenge of authority, well, most of the woman’s words ended up being empty, empty jokes and challenges she’d never be able to act on. And yet, there was always something about the possibility. There was no Captain on board to stop them or pick out a more capable member than three scientists to check the noises out, and perhaps the joke and hope for a mystery of their own was a way for Avi to release some of the impatience building up inside of her. Still, feigning genuity, she reached out a hand to Thalia, looking at her and Yanan for their agreement to join her towards the med-bay.


Avigail Moradi.
the astrophysicist
status? healthy.
mood? restless, bored, hoping for something fun
location? The SS-Azael's lounge.
interactions? Yanan Borgov, mangomilk mangomilk , Thalia Baldwin, jay - arbiter jay - arbiter
coded by incandescent

 

spacecowboys

exo soldiers







Lt. C. "Cassy" Carreira








location: MHS-D. Flight Deck




status: focused











  • ://ACT_ONE_WARM_WELCOME


    Damn.

    It's been a while… Since the last time Cave was out in the field without Denzel to watch his six and vice versa. Something akin to nervousness crawled up his back at the very idea. His brother's words still bobbing around his head. Better make it quick so we can get the fuck out of this can, I'm getting bored. Apparently, Sunny was convinced it was just some comms failure. Or maybe oxygen got corrupted and everybody was dead and rotting. That Command was wrong and there was no job for them here. The problem was… Sullivan's gut was only working right on a short distance. When it came to stuff like that? Usually? He was wrong.

    Soldier's gaze skipped to Ryo. There was something in her eyes that distracted him from his own train of thought. No words but he gave the woman a small nod. His own eyes shining with reassurance. Half of the chamber was crammed with elite killers. Whatever it was, they got this.

    "Ready?"
    "Affirm." Pointed voice of the level-headed trooper. Formal compared to the usual, breezy overtone during downtime. Girded up, Carreira watched the sealed slabs of metal come apart.

    Locked behind the limpid visor of his armored space-suit he drew in steady breaths of filtered oxygen. Collimated wave of aqua blues ebbed across his vision over the inside of the HUD. Scanning. Quick to latch onto any dubious object in his line of sight. To alert or verify and file away at his peripheral.

    His magnetic boots intruded the foreign deck with the light thumps of metal on metal. Disturbing the echo-sensitive space the man followed Chapman's right flank. Legs and arms reinforced by the titanium skeleton of his Octane 200. The leading manufacturer of military grade exosuits. The company that his adoptive brother Christian was working for.

    Shouldered rifle obeyed his trained motions, sweeping the unnaturally empty space. Cave was never lacking in imagination, his mind easily visualized MHS-Desdemona's passengers and crew crowding the now abandoned flight deck. Going about their routines, chasing tasks or catching a breath in between them. But the images played at the far back of his head. Leaving the forefront for the calculating professional who derived first conclusions.

    Then it went from zero to sixty. The sight of blood like alarm going off in his head. Seeing Ryo's shaking arms in the corner of his eye tightened his stomach even more. Carreira leveled muzzle with his optic axis, aiming in the same direction everyone's gaze turned to. Jesus Christ. Did the doctor just feel like a chitchat now?? They all had damn eyes to see it was a smear. Cave knew, from the start, he had this feeling shimmering just below the surface. That it was a terrible idea to drag civilians in here. The image of Amelie's face involuntarily popping into his mind... Standing near their Captain the man waited for more orders. Don't tell him that Chapman was seriously planning for all of them to scout ahead...










coded by weldherwings.




idiot idiot
Zerulu Zerulu
Lekiel Lekiel
 

Lekiel

Two Thousand Club
Supporter








Space was a peculiar thing. It forced you to put stuff into perspective. Amelie never really considered herself a romantic dreamer, at least not in the last decade of her life. Sure she had her hopes and end goals. The kind you saw in swirling shapes of grey-blue hues and glittering bokeh lights with every drag of Ambrosia filling your lungs. But often these seemed like the twinkling of a faraway galaxy, faint against the backdrop of making through each moment of her arduous existence.

Not that she felt the drag. There simply was no time to count each rolling second when your ears were tuned to the constant beeping alerts of patients in distress, as your subconscious was stretched taut to monitor the requests of assistance from triage all the while you were trying to recount the conditions and medication responses of innumerable patients to an indolent locum physician who clearly didn't give a flying fuck; as long as their last breaths weren't signed in his name. Nevermind the fact that simply accepting care within his means - instead of the cash it would bring - would ensure no one had to leave healthcare so debilitated in wheelchairs and walking aids, they were probably better off in a body bag. She was the one who had to smile and lie through her teeth, telling family members it was the best they could do. That they were lucky. That she'd seen others who didn't make it.

That they should be thankful for the half-arsed job their loved one received because someone wanted more than their fair share of the pie.

It was white noise. Like the stewing gossip behind her back. A backdrop hum that susurrated in her ear as she pored over mountains of texts; in an effort to 'up-her-game' so she could roll better dice. And even as she slept, fretful dreams of how she was failing that little girl with strawberry locks and impish smile stole away what meagre rest she had. It never stopped. She never stopped. Stuck in fourth gear of the 'fast but not too fast', careening down the highway with snapped brakes and broken lights. It wore on her axels and weighed on her soul. So the only way was up. Into the blue-tinged darkened ceiling of borrowed peace, her lender the tip of a syringe and her creditor the pellucid azure cocktail only a barista of her accreditations could easily access. They called it Ambrosia. It was her debt of mounting interest rates. But it was a damn good one.

Perhaps that was why she was so afraid of the abyssal blackness. The void that both seemed infinitely large and infinitely confining at the same time. Space was silent. It demanded silence. You could scream till your lungs tore and nobody would hear you. Amelie didn't know how to deal with silence. No, not the one that bashed on your eardrums. The ones that scratched in the corners of your mind. The ones that enveloped you in stifling colours of umbral blacks and maddening greys.

Or maybe it was just her claustrophobia acting up and she was overthinking things. Standing in the crowded airlock and watching their approach of the derelict Desdemona on the observation screen. It was difficult to gauge its size. Not until they approached the flight deck did the nurse fully comprehend how large the colony starship was. It was comforting in a way. A larger ship meant more solid ground. At least that's what she told herself in an effort to trick her unevolved irrational fear of confined spaces. She checked her pulse reading on her visor's HUD.

121 to 79. Not great, but not terrible. She would be fine once they boarded.

Obviously she was wrong.

Captain Chapman was giving them a final briefing, her austere tone crackling in her earpiece, a welcome distraction that pulled her thoughts back to the task at hand, “-Koehl will follow with the medical crew, Zhivago and Schulz, while Yohannan covers the rear.”

"Understood." Her voice cracked, but nobody seemed to notice, or at least say anything. She wet her lips and swallowed the lump in her throat, eyes flitting from Zhivago to the brown-haired Laura.

Finally, she felt the rumble of the landing gear and then the airlock opened with a loud hiss. Their little group wasted no time in disembarking and stepping into the vast area at a brisk albeit controlled pace. It was a moment of brief respite for the nurse, thankful for the expansive area which did much to alleviate her anxiety. But barely a minute in and that same anxiety returned, though this time it was from a different source.

"Where's everybody?" Amelie's voice crackled over the comms in puzzlement. She remembered Zhivago's jestful prognosis of what they might find. Some otherworldly entity didn't seem so far fetched as their very situation looked like it could be taken out of a horror sci-fi movie set. Covered with all her layers of protective clothing, she could still feel her hairs stand. The nurse paused at a scattering of luggage at the foot of a bench. The purple canvas trolley bag looked so unassumingly innocent as if its owner had left it in the care of another to go to the bathroom. Only they never returned and whoever was watching it, had to leave in a hurry. She turned and hurried forwards, careful to maintain her position behind the captain, Cave and Ryo.

It was all too eerie.

If it was some kind of fatal systems malfunction, where were the bodies? If it was something minor-


"Oh my God." She couldn't help herself. The involuntary exclamation spilling out of her mouth perhaps at the exact moment everyone else caught sight of it. It wasn't a sight the nurse hadn't seen before but it certainly wasn't what she was expecting. The fact that the first sign of human life they'd encounter was the crimson liquid of someone's veins painted all over the floors and walls chilled her to the bone.

"There's too much of it," her voice dropped to barely a whisper at Chapman's request for silence. Her mind churned. Nobody who had lost that amount of blood could move. Definitely not without help.

This much blood. . .

If it came from one person, they were most likely dead.

Why were they moved?

How did it happen?


A part of her wanted to hurry forward. The instinct to respond to an emergency situation. To see if someone needed help. To rush around the corner where the crimson fluid was smeared out of view like the streaks of a calligraphy painting. But her rational mind won out. Something was definitely off and against her better judgement, Amelie wasn't about to run headlong into whatever that something was. In the early years of her practice, she had her fair share of touring with paramedics in response to emergency calls. Overcrowded ghettos meant plenty of unpredictable gang-on-gang wars and while many still had the sense not to target civil health personnel, they were not immune to becoming collateral victims.

Lukas apparently felt the same but didn't hold himself back as much as he picked up his pace to make his assessment known.

"Hold up, Doc..." She cautioned.







the nurse



amelie.








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♡coded by uxie♡
 

mangomilk

big oof






y. borgov




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His long limbs sprawled over the surface of the couch like a centipede. His legs spread wide and his arms leaned both ways on the latex cushions, leaving little space for any company. The scientist threw his head back with his body radiating expressions of exhaustion and boredom. The conversations across the room flowed into one ear where he considered word for word before it left the other again. Employed beyond preparation. – Presence for purpose. Each time Pritchard’s high-pitched voice rose, Yanan waited for it to break. He thoroughly relished that small unique characteristic of his. But even more he was entertained by the way the skinny man with piercing blue eyes seemed surprised about his body’s reaction to his brain’s controls. An itch laid on his tongue every now and then to express some rough words towards Pritchard for the mere reason of witnessing his incredulous but very humane reception.

Borgov’s eyes rested shut and let the voices of Griff and Thalia illuminate his imagination. If only Griff would be better at his job, they might nod with a feign smile and leave him as it is. With the MHC behind his back, he could be as scary of a ruler as Chapman. Instead he nebulized the lounge with the vestiges of insecurity and cold sweat. He was going to put his plan to action, he was going to say it. "Prit"– A loud rattling interrupted his dialogue as he opened his eyes to track the sound to the vents up above. Something new on his mind, his ideas from moments ago have been deemed outdated in the very second. The unworthiness of his words fell to dust from the lack of his tone as Yanan did not intend to speak his mind any longer.

His head lifted from the couch cushion as his the onyx shaded strands of his hair fell back into his face. He was looking for recognition of his peers for the origin of the unfamiliar sounds. He still caught Pritchard's steps through the exit of the lounge. The scientist raised himself from his seat and slouched back to the table where he took the spot Griff left. "As long as it’s not rat-like organisms…," he thought out loud and raised his shoulders unknowingly. "Rats are fine," he felt the need to shoot a glance at Thalia for his expression. He didn’t want to bash rats in front of their field-biologist. "However their balls are massive, which is slightly intimidating…Not to say large testicles are abnormal." He nodded with a satisfied smile as if he he had fulfilled his honorable duty in standing up for the individuals with enormous testicles.

"As Griff said, looks like we’re the capable investigation crew. I guess we just have to go check it out," Avigail said. Yanan stemmed his arms in his hips and howled out his hyena-like laugh as he threw his head back. "Miss Moradi. I see we will get along well!" He clapped his hands and nodded with purpose. "Let’s go ladies!" He exchanged a look to Avigail on the right and Thalia on the left, offering both of them the respective side of his arm to hold onto and make a worthy exit.





♡coded by uxie♡
 
Last edited:

Krill

Lurker in Darkness
Nikki flicked off a few more systems as she worked through the rest of her post-flight checklist. The checklist existed in two places: on the corporate-issue datapad she had forgotten to charge since day one of the trip, and in her memory, nestled tightly in a spot where intuition and common sense could easily fill in the gaps disinterest produced.

It was supposed to be a multi-person process, with checks from the engine room and other ship officers, but Chapman either didn't know or didn't care, and Nikki had every reason to keep it that way. The ship would work, whether the licensing authority was happy or not. And Nikki had always gotten on better with the Captains who trusted her enough not to waste her time.

"So, Lacasa," she interjected when the crew on the MHS Desdemona took too long to respond. "Let's say you're one of the old man's kids here." She paused her switch-flicking and glanced over her shoulder to study Tony, for the effect. "And you're about ten years older than you are now, just to keep it realistic. What do you get daddy dearest for the birthday, huh?"

Tony couldn’t help but scoff at the ten year older comment from Nikki. As for Lacasa, she had her devilish smirk back on and before she replied, the comms officer made sure she didn’t have her microphone on.

“What do you get the man who has everything?” Tapping a manicured finger to her lips, as though deep in thought. “Empathy? Oh, maybe an ounce of humility!”

Nikki shook her head ruefully over the controls.

“Pfft, please. And I’m sure both you girls would love to call me da-“ Tony’s quip was thankfully cut short as the expedition crew began speaking… with the mention of blood!

Tony and his two victims-by-proximity all seemed to raise the same collective eyebrow in unison. As Lacasa moved to answer, Nikki abandoned the last two steps from the checklist and leaned back in her swiveled chair to really take in the conversation that followed.

Unfortunately, this effort to focus was torn away by the sudden flash of movement across the side of the ship, followed by the rough sound of tearing metal on the hull. The noise, which Nikki heard through a rapidly-enclosing veil of dread, co-opted the space of whatever Lacasa had been saying in response to blood.

She knew ships. She knew the sounds they made. She knew repairmen in the vents and she knew the awful tearing roar that had chased her through the body of the Skipper Ricky IV when a drunk deck-hand in one of the American ports had tipped the sports cruiser Ysemeni onto the side of the trash-hauler she'd been planning to quit after the next gig. Thousands of tonnes of metal sheared over the side. The Ysemeni's paint job, worth as much as the entire hangar, sundered beyond redemption. She hadn't thought she'd survive that sound, let alone what it implied. It had been the thunderous noise of the end of the world.

This sound was quieter. The shape that made it, softer. Like a piece of plating, tumbling from the hangar ceiling up above.

Terrifying, because she had no clue what had made it.

Her eyes met Tony's. They'd heard the same thing, something more immediately pressing than whatever anatomical tragedy the expedition was gawking at deep in the apparently bloody bowels of the Desdemona.

"Well shit," she muttered, at a tone that wouldn't disrupt Lacasa's conversation.

She, the pilot, needed to be ready to take off at any moment. It wasn't a matter of pure protocol, though Chapman would expect as much immediacy as Nikki demanded of herself. It was a matter of identity. A pilot didn't have to fly - but they had to be capable of flying. Any barrier between the ideation of "I will fly" and its realization was a barrier between a pilot and their self.

A damaged, broken ship, a ship that might not hold itself together out in the void - that was a barrier. A barrier she had become increasingly aware of as she had endured endless corporate quality assurance assessments from contractors demanding higher and higher standards of spaceworthiness. She despised their standards, borne from numbers, not immersion, not identity; but she respected, at least, the necessity of their purpose. A pilot must fly; ergo, a pilot's ship must be worthy of flight.

And as the pilot of a ship that wasn't flying, she could see no excuse - no other option - than to go out there herself, and ensure this ship could fly. Before it needed to.

"That had better be Saint Nick on the rooftop," she said quietly, standing, as she switched her headset to an open channel. She jabbed a finger at Lacasa, realized she was still on the line with Chapman, and turned it to Tony. "Don't you fucking let me make a fool of myself, Varon."

What Varon replied with didn't matter - as she left the bridge, she let her raised middle finger stand guard at her behind.

***​

Nikki liked feeling bare, unguarded, at one with the moment and the world. She liked the sensation of lightness, of efficiency, of a necessary immersion in everything that swallowed her up and chewed her up but she survived.

Maybe that was what she liked. Surviving.

It would certainly explain why she felt so naked here, in a full IEVA suit, hands digging into her hips as the airlock before her hissed with sanitizing gases. Her suit was scrap compared to the state-of-the-art she'd seen on the soldiers, and she couldn't deny that she would have felt a lot safer in one of those, but this was a BYOS affair and her old rags had gotten her through enough tight scrapes she felt, maybe, a smidge of loyalty to them.

Says something about my loyalty. The suit would end its life in an incinerator or forgotten under a one-night's bunk.

All it had to do, as far as she was concerned, was its job. And it wasn't a lack of faith in this that had made her stop by her bunk to retrieve the pistol Chapman may or may not have known she was stowing on board.

The doors opened. She stepped through. They sealed behind her.

She let her grip fall to the holster's latch. Precaution. Discipline.

That would get a kick out of somebody.
But a name eluded her.

The outer doors unclosed.
 

jay - arbiter

the alpine witch



thalia.





































  • mood



    focused
















Thalia turned in the direction of Griff’s voice, and her eyes narrowed slightly when he addressed her. Before she could correct him by clarifying that she was “Dr. Baldwin” and not “Ms. Baldwin,” he mentioned something about “important research” that caught her attention. She raised an eyebrow and waited for him to elaborate, but he didn’t, much to her disappointment. Instead, he provided more vague reassurance that did little to sate her curiosity.

Thalia scoffed quietly when he finished, knowing she should’ve known better than to expect specifics from the MHC representative. Thalia appreciated his organized and well-mannered disposition, but, when it came to questions about what they were really doing on this mission, it was as if lucidity failed him completely. Thalia got the feeling that it had more to do with confidentiality than plain incompetence—which, as a professional, she understood, but it still frustrated her.

The field biologist was used to having details about her ventures. Field studies and specimen extraction trips had detailed itineraries, more likely to result in informational overload than unanswered questions. A good mission itinerary wasn’t just about what they were doing; it was about why they were doing it. It helped many of AEPI’s researchers—especially Thalia herself—stay motivated. A month or so in the grim Wastelands of the original Earth was tough. The extent to which life was almost completely absent from some areas often upset Thalia. But it was more than worth it because she knew why she was there: to preserve what remained of that Earth for the future of another one. For a second chance.

Strange rattling sounded above them. It seemed to travel past them towards the back and stop suddenly. Clunk! Thalia turned from the direction of the sound to Griff, only to find him flushing red. After mumbling something about needing to answer a message and the higher capability of the three scientists, he began tapping at his phone and was soon out of the lounge. The field biologist curiously watched him leave.

It wasn’t quite a smile, but Thalia’s expression softened pleasantly at Avigail’s “Well.” She anticipated the astrophysicist’s suggestion and prepared herself to agree. Yanan piped up: "As long as it’s not rat-like organisms… Rats are fine." She met his glance squarely, saying with her eyes that she had no particular affection for rats. All organisms were precious in their own way from an ecological standpoint, of course, but not all organisms were pleasant. The image of a large-testicled rodent that formed in her head as the microbiologist went on reinforced this idea.

“Besides, Captain’s finally gone, ship’s completely ours. I say we find some trouble, and if the noises were nothing, we cause some.” Thalia nodded in agreement. “It certainly sounds more stimulating than sitting in this lounge. Also,” Thalia threw a brief glance in the direction of the sound, “I’m actually curious about what exactly that sound was. I don’t know much about ships, but I wouldn’t attribute that rattling to gears or pipes.”

Thalia gave Avigail’s outreached hand a curious look, grabbed onto it with her own, and gave it a firm shake before letting go. Thalia didn’t quite understand everything the other woman did, but she understood well enough that the outreached hand was an invitation to investigate. It seemed to mean something that this invitation came from Avigail, whom Thalia suspected had an inquisitive spirit similar to her own. She gave the astrophysicist a polite nod as she released her hand, her lips pursed slightly as if she had just given up on saying something hard to articulate.

Thalia then turned to Yanan, who was offering one arm to her and the other to Avigail. She somewhat appreciated this, which she construed as an attempt at a gentlemanly gesture, but didn’t quite see the need. She tilted her head and said sincerely, “We should walk a little spread out—to cover more space. Thank you, though, Dr. Borgov.” She started in the direction of the med-bay, her walk brisk and purposeful, anticipating that the two other scientists would follow suit.































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sasami










♡coded by uxie♡
 
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