Be so humble there’s no h. Be umble.
“So you’ve been keeping a journal; Roc’s Ramblings, very clever.” she said as she slipped the volume across the desk towards me. “You’ve been making good progress these last few months. How does that make you feel?” she asked.
“I feel good.” I replied without hesitation.
“That’s fantastic. You didn’t pause to form the answer you think I wish to hear; you didn’t have any sarcasm. That’s a long way from when we first met wouldn’t you agree?”. I remembered that day well.
“You have got to be kidding me.” I barked at Cytral, the CEO of Freeform Industries. “You want me to see a bloody shrink? Do I look like I need a voodoo doctor to you?” The ire in my voice was beginning to rise. I had zero interest in seeing a pyschologist. I didn’t need someone repeating everything I said in the form of a question, and charging the company an outrageous amount for it. If I wanted to express what was on my mind, trust me, you’d know it. If I didn’t, then what damn business was it of anyone else’s?
“Roc, take it easy. It’s a standard corporate policy for pod pilots. We’ve found that a counselling session after cloning has really taken the strain off of our pilots. It helps make the experience a little less traumatic.”
“Tell them to grow some balls.” I harumped.
“Look Roc, just do it to set an example ok? You’ve got a lot of potential in this company, but you need to start being more than some hotshot Amarr mass murderer in the war. We need you to be a leader.”
“I thought killing Amarr was setting an example.” I could tell from the look in Cytral’s eyes that I wasn’t going to win this argument. He knew my sarcasm too well by now. “Besides,” I added, “What makes you think I even want to be a leader?”.
“Fine. If this is the way you want it, don’t say I didn’t try. Roc Wieler, report to mandatory post cloning trauma counselling immediately. It is standard corporate policy and failure to comply will result in your termination from this corporation, as per section 3.11, paragraph C of the company code of standards, which you signed upon commencement of your employment within the corporation.”
Jesus Cy, I was just pushing your buttons, I thought to myself.
“Alright, alright, I’ll go.” I waved my hands in mock surrender, and headed to the voodoo doctor.
I didn’t have to wait long; she was expecting me, and graciously welcomed me to join her in a comfortably decorated, cozy office. She was obviously Caldari, the close cropped, military style haircut, the pale skin, the ugliness; it was hard to mistake her for anything else. She extended her hand palm upwards, gesturing for me to take a seat on a comfortably oversized chair. The leather finish squeaked as I worked my way into it, allowing the plushness to surround and soothe me. She put on her glasses, then briefly flipped through a folder. I waited impatiently for her to say something; every second reminding me what a complete and utter waste of time this was.
“How do you feel?” she asked out of nowhere.
“Pardon me?” I replied, caught offguard. She removed her glasses, placing them on her desk in front of her, then closed the file folder. She looked me straight in the eyes, despite me wearing sunglasses; something not a lot of people can do.
“Would you please remove your sunglasses. It helps me to engage in conversations eye to eye.” I took my sunglasses off in my pod. I didn’t wear them when sleeping. I sometimes removed them when working out, or during sex; sometimes. That was about it. I was about to tell her to go to hell, but my brain got the better of me. I knew that I had to play the game; that I would have to comply, do as she asked, tell her what she wanted to hear to get out of here. Not being here was my primary objective. Realizing that, it was just another mission, and I would do whatever had to be done to quickly and efficiently succeed at my mission. I removed my sunglasses.
“Thank you.” she said melodically. Damned head rapists all had the same voice; soothing, smooth, relaxing, completely fake. “How do you feel?” she repeated.
I already felt trapped. I played out the scenarios in my head. Regardless of how I answered, it would lead to more questions, and regardless of how I answered those, it would lead to more questions until she extracted what information she was after, helped me come to some epiphany, then finally released me from her evil grasp to get back to my job. She interrupted my thoughts.
“It’s not true you know, what they say.” She had me intrigued. My eyebrow raised involuntarily, questioning what she was referring to. I wouldn’t bite. I didn’t care. “We’re not out to get you. We want to help. There’s no right or wrong answer, no turning whatever you say back on you in the future, no string of answers to get you out of here any sooner.” She was surprisingly perceptive. “So please, Roc, just tell me how you feel, and we’ll go from there.”
“Tired.” I replied.
“That’s a good start, thank you. Why do you feel tired?” Oh bloody hell. Here we go already with repeating what I say in the form of a question. It’s like walking through a minefield, except with a brain prober every step lands you on a mine, yet you don’t die; you just keep walking forward into more glorious misery and pain.
“Been a long day.” I really didn’t want to be here. We both knew it.
“We’re both adults here, so let’s be blunt. Instead of making me ‘play shrink’ and use my ‘tricks’ to get answers out of you, like I would a child, why not try offering better explanations so we can both get on with our day? Hmm?”
Did she just call me a child? What kind of quack insults her patients? I think I was actually starting to like her a little.
“It’s a strain piloting a heavy assault cruiser; tires you physically and mentally. Worrying about your crew, worrying about your ship, worrying about whether you will succeed in your mission or end up in the cloner; there’s stress all around. Been doing this day in and day out since before the war. It wears you down is all.” Chew on that. You wanted answers; you got them.
“Yes, I hear that from many capsuleers. I don’t envy the burden you bear.”
Burden? What burden? Being a capsuleer is a gift; an honour; an obligation of duty. It isn’t a burden in the least, it’s a privilege. I was going to interject, but she continued.
“The mind is a fragile and beautiful machine, its full capabilities still unknown. It allows us to fly starships; it is solely responsible for every great achievement in all of our histories, and yet understanding our own minds is something we neglect to explore. Our greatest conquest is inwards, yet man has always focused his goal seeking outwards. Master your mind, and you master everything.”
Cut. Print. Gay.
“Yeah, we’re done.” I said, rising from the chair. “You want to talk about the ‘inner cosmos’, go right ahead. Me? I’ve got a job to do, people to kill. I haven’t the time nor desire to sit here listening to you ramble on about a spiritualistic justification of career self importance. I got podded; it happens. My body’s fine. My mind’s fine. I want to go see how many of my crew made it out alive, what was salvaged from the ship, make any next of kin notifications I need to make, then head to the tattoo shop and get some ink on my face. Have a nice day.”
I turned and stormed towards the lobby. I knew I was going to hear about this from Cy. I really didn’t care at the time. I was fuming angry. Who the hell did this woman think she was, poking at me like some junior science experiment? I’ve bedded women who talked less and enjoyed my company more. I didn’t need her analysis to understand my own mind.
I slammed the door on the way out, to emphasize my point, and headed about my business.
“Yeah, probably not my best first impression.” I offered.
“You still hold onto a lot of anger, Roc. You use it to drive you. It fuels you in battle; it strengthens your core beliefs; it gives you strength. But it also weakens you. It makes you predictable. It can be used against you.”
I contemplated her words, looking for flaws in her logic.
“You’re an asshole.” she said bluntly.
What did she just call me? I could feel my hands balling into fists, the throbbing of the vein on my forehead. Then I realized what she was doing, and calmed myself. I still had much to learn.
“Nice try, doc.” I smirked at her. “But I see what you did there.” She smiled back. She wasn’t as ugly to me as she used to be. She hadn’t changed at all; maybe I had.
“Very good. We need to find out why you’re so angry, so volatile. To do that, we’re going to explore what makes you happy. Tell me, what makes you happy Roc?”
I gave it some thought, but didn’t hesitate in my answer. I just went with my gut, the first answer that came to mind. “Killing Amarr.” was my obvious reply.
“Let’s set some parameters to the question. There are no Amarr. There is nobody else at all. There is nothing in this universe except for you. What makes Roc happy, all on his own?”
I furrowed my brow, inwardly concentrating. What did make me happy? What did I like to do that was solely based on me and me alone? I struggled, searching for an answer that refused to surface. The realization was both startling and revealing. I wasn’t happy.
“I …” I began.
“Go on.” She encouraged.
“I don’t know what makes me happy. I’ve never given it much thought. There’s always been something else that required my attention more; my entire life. I’ve always been the one to get things done, the shoulder to cry on, the one who had to be strong. I don’t know what makes me happy.”
“Then that is where we’ll look next. What about the journal writing? Have you enjoyed that?” I thought about that, the daily journal I keep. It did actually make me happy. I enjoyed writing my memoirs, my thoughts on life, my introspections into self. I enjoyed it immensely.
“Yes actually. I do enjoy writing. Very much so.”
“Then keep with the journal. Keep writing. And how did it make you feel releasing it for public consumption?”
I was nervous at first. I don’t know why. It’s not like I knew the trillions and trillions of citizens of New Eden. It’s not like I cared what any of them thought of my writing. I was doing it for me; doing it because it was recommended by my psychologist. But that had changed; I liked my audience. I enjoyed their comments. I felt good when they had positive feedback. I felt a connection with them. I had actually started reading more of the public feeds available around New Eden, had started becoming a more active member of this galactic society. And good things had been happening to me since I started writing. Promotions at work and in the militia; popularity with my own people; a taste of fame, unwanted as it was; and recognition. I felt good when I thought about my journal. I felt happy.
“You know, doc. I’m glad I have an audience. I appreciate them.”
She smiled again. “We’re done for today. I want you to find other things that make you, and you alone, happy. Bring some unbridled joy into your life, Roc. You deserve it. No matter what argument you have against that, you deserve happiness. Go be happy.”
And with that, we were done our session.
I punched the wall again, this time hearing the knuckles split, and looked at the blood on both the wall and my fist.
“That damn arrogant, double talking sunuvabitch!” I yelled to nobody. I punched the wall again, adding more cracks to my hand, but finally starting to crack the wall. I still wasn’t satisfied.
“You foul smelling, fat waste of skin!” I punched again, even harder than before. I was outraged. I was beyond angry.
“You condescending, self righteous, hyocritical pain in my ass!” I exploded. “Fucking Amarr piece of shit.”
ATTN ALL PILOTS:
Mandi Kai is to be terminated on sight, commencing immediately. Colonel Roc Wieler will pay 10 million ISK per verified kill. Culmulative kills are encouraged. Destroy her ship. Destroy her pod. Punish her until she ceases to exist in this universe. You will find her close to the Amarr homeworld, flying frigates, cruisers, and assault frigates. She must be taught a lesson.
Bookmark this post and link your Battleclinic killmail in it.
“You messed with the wrong person this time.”
It’s ok to be wrong. I just enjoy being right more often.
Welcome to the November installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed here. Check out other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!
This month’s EVE Blog Banter comes to us from Brinelan over at The Shard (http://www.theshard.org). He asks: What drew us into EVE, what keeps us playing the game and what brought us back if we’ve ever left?
Everyone has a story to tell.
I remember my humble beginnings. My life began in a simple city, of no more than one hundred and thirty five citizens. We weren’t the biggest clan by any means, but we were very close knit. War raged around us, eventually destroying what was our home. We tried to rebuild, but it was never the same. I was a tribal leader then, a valued member of the clan, but I made my mistakes. I hurt a lot of people unintentionally, trapped in an ever growing web of my own lies. It is something I truly regret to this day, and have vowed to never get caught up in such a situation again.
Despite the fame, despite the community I failed, my destiny was to be elsewhere.
I was enslaved at ten years old, forced into a life of servitude by the Amarr. There was a point when the only escape my mind had was to fantasize about crazy things. I remember one nightmarish fantasy I had, where I was undead, some kind of mystical warlock, able to cast about magic, like the bedtime stories I remembered when I was an infant. Once I was a superhero, able to jump over buildings in a single bound. There was even a time I lived among small human like creatures, seeking some all powerful and unifying ring. But I grew up; I no longer had a desire for such childish things.
Eventually, I snatched my freedom. It was no easy task. I fled from Amarr space, knowing nothing of the New Eden before me, unskilled, untried, unprepared. A lot had changed in twenty years.
I made my way to Hrober, where I lived for months, etching out a precarious living, never sure if each day would be my last. I was eventually taken under the wing of some local mercenaries there. It was they whom shaped the future I enjoy now. They trained me as a pilot. They recommended me as a capsuleer. They taught me to do more than survive; they taught me how to thrive.
Since leaving them, I’ve made my own little dent in the universe. Sure, I am not as well known as thousands of capsuleers, but my goal was never to acquire fame or fortune. I simply want to make a difference. I want to free our people from the tyranny of the Amarr.
When the Republic started recruiting capsuleers for the war effort, it was a no brainer. I signed up immediately, leading engagements into both Amarr and Caldari space. There are some who enjoy my style of fleet command; and a few who don’t. Through much effort, aptitude, diligence, and patience, I am now a Matar Colonel of the Tribal Liberation Force.
And yet, war cannot last forever.
There is still so much of this universe for me to explore. In reality, I’ve seen very little of it, not even much of my birth planet. But then again, who has really? Even to master all the cultural intricacies on one planet could take several lifetimes, let alone fully embracing the entirety of New Eden?
Fortunately, I have several lifetimes to explore; to learn; to embrace.
What keeps me here? My story has only just begun.
Swearing is but a crutch upon which uneducated people lean to express themselves.
Something I have never understood about people is what I have termed “Woeful Ignorance”. “Head in the sand”, “Oblivious”, “Self-centered” are all similar terms, but they just don’t completely embrace the message I am trying to convey when I say “Woeful Ignorance”.
It’s more than just being a selfish jerk. It’s more than being ignorant of politics and news. It’s about allowing your own ignorances to detract from others, taking away from their enjoyment of life is some way, big or small. To be so completely out of touch with reality, microcosm or macrocosm, to the point where you are impacting strangers, friends and family alike, is one of my greatest pet peeves.
I have no patience for stupid people.
It was a hot and humid summer. I was on the magtrain. I know, you probably still wonder why I spend so much time among my own people if I just become infuriated. I wonder that myself sometimes too. These are the people I fight for, but there are days I question why. I think that might be my reasoning really. My own internal conflicts are often brought to self-illumination while riding the magtrain, and I force myself to somehow work through them to resolution. Doubt in a pilot’s mind can be lethal, and I couldn’t afford to have doubts.
So, I was on the magtrain, observing, listening, remembering what it was like to be anonymous. It was my usual routine; one which I enjoyed. I am a people watcher. I find for me, it’s the best way to gain understanding of a situation; observation. I am detail oriented. I take in sights, sounds, smells, body language; everything I can.
I’ve had some tell me I’m too judgemental. Isn’t that, in and of itself, a judgement?
One particular male had my attention. He was talking on a handheld communications device. Not everyone had aural implants, even though they had come down in price drastically over the last two years. Anyway, I gathered from his vocal volume that he was having trouble hearing the person on the other end. I find that ironic. If you can’t hear them, why must you speak louder? Does it help you hear them better? Do you assume that because you can’t hear them, they must not be able to hear you? I hadn’t been on this particular magtrain before, but had a particular destination in mind. The magtrain was quite crowded, and I was near the back, which made it difficult to see the “Next Stop” sign at the front of the magtrain. There was an Aura-like voice that broadcast the next stop, but with that guy talking so loudly I couldn’t hear it clearly. I was getting to know all about the person he was talking to though, as were most everyone else in his vicinity.
I really didn’t want to miss my stop.
I politely said “Excuse me.” to get his attention. He put his hand over the mouthpiece of his device, throwing me a dirty look. “I’m in the middle of a call.” he said, in case I wasn’t already painfully aware. “Would you mind keeping it down a little? I can’t hear the stops, and don’t know the area. It would be appreciated.”
“Move to the front of the train then. Not my problem.” he replied.
“Look, the train’s full. I’m just asking you to keep it down a little so I can hear. It’s not a difficult request.” I was standing directly in front of his seat now, my volume normal and steady, non threatening, so as not to raise even more of a disruption than his excessive volume.
I guess he didn’t like that because he asked the person on the other end of his phone to hold on, then stood up in front of me, inches from my chest, looking up at my face, his bravado evident. Good for him. He felt brave.
I didn’t back up. “Why don’t you find somewhere else to stand, Brutor?” he said at me with disdain. “This is an important call.”
“Yes, I realize Kelly’s cousin isn’t feeling well, and now Kelly has to do all of her grocery shopping, and with all the hours she’s been putting in at work recently, she’s so tired that she doesn’t even want to get out of bed. It’s quite the dilemma.”
I pay attention to details. His eyes narrowed with furious intent. I had violated his privacy. The irony of course, is that he had violated his own privacy, but I have often found it’s difficult to explain these subtle truths to people when they become angry. His body posture changed slightly, becoming more aggressive. His hip turned. I knew he was going to throw a punch.
Having said that, to the witnesses there, it would like I started the fight. I did not. I simply knew the punch was coming before them, and diffused the situation before it became embarassing for this guy.
With my left hand, I grabbed his handheld. With my right palm, I forcefully angled downwards a firm push where his neck and clavicle met. Simple biomechanics. It doesn’t matter how big you are, how strong you are, your body will respond as it was designed to, no matter how hard you try to resist it.
He plopped down ungracefully on his seat, murderous rage and confusion on his face.
As I mentioned, it was a hot summer. The magtrain had a few windows open. One happened to be right behind him. I threw his handheld out of the window.
He went to stand again, his aggression apparent. I stiff armed him back into his seat, quietly warning him “Don’t”.
Just then, I heard the next stop being announced. It was mine. I backed away, keeping my eye on him lest he not realize this was already over.
He just sat in his seat, glaring bloody murder towards me. I was used to that look. It said to me, “I am now impotent, and know it. I hate you for making me feel that way.” It was a common rationalization. It made the other party to blame, instead of having to look at your own woeful ignorance.
The magtrain slowed to a stop. I left the train, and thoroughly enjoyed the rest of my day.
I’m not crazy. Neither am I.
“Sir! Wake up.”
“Sir! Roc! Wake up!” I feel myself being shaken by the shoulders and open my eyes. My team lead is there, looking at me with concern. “What is it?” I ask. “Sir, you were barking like a dog. It was kinda freaking out some of the new recruits.” I sit fully up, working the kinks out of my neck. Dreaming of dreams within memories that aren’t. I’m messed up.
The mind is a wondrous device. It has the ability to store every detail of every moment of our lives, and even those memories that aren’t from our lives. I am still haunted by what they have done to me. Obviously.
“I’m good. At ease, Major. Report.”
“The storm’s finally died down. We’ve contacted the landing shuttle. They’ve brought fresh supplies and also commended us on our search.” He smirks at me. I don’t like it when people are in on a joke and I’m not; makes me wonder if the joke is about me.
“Our search?” I ask cautiously. The Vorshud Major salutes, turns on his heel, and walks to the entrace of the cave we had been holed up in. I arch my eyebrow, put on my enviro suit, and follow fifty two seconds later.
I put my hand in front of my eyes as I leave the cave. The sun is blinding in its brightness. I squint through my polarized glasses until my eyes adjust, then my eyes bulge, and my jaw drops. I lower my hand and stand in complete awe.
Less than half a kilometer away are a ring of twelve obelisks, each at least 500 feet in height, maybe more. We were sitting on it the whole time. The Elders were right. It does exist. After all our effort, after all our pain, salvation may finally be in sight.
“Entering the atmosphere now, sir.”, the pilot reports. “Very good.”, the Gallente capsuleer says. “Soon I will have you, Roc. Soon you will know your eternal death.”
“Ok, contact the ship and have them prep the dig teams. Send a few men to help with the setup. I also want snipers covering the site from there,” I point to an outcropping on my left, “there, and there.” I point out two more locations. No sense getting sloppy near the end. Stay alert. Stay alive.
I don’t know what it is, but I’ve got a bad feeling about this…
“Hard to confirm life signs, sir. The dust storms on the planet’s surface make it difficult to insure accuracy.”
I know you’re here. I’ve been following your trail. It’s because of you I’ve lost my honour. It’s because of you I’ve lost all credibility. Everything I’ve spent my lifetime achieving is gone, because of you. Your death will be slow. I will break you, Brutor. You will beg me to kill you, and I won’t. Ever. I will just make you wish you were dead; like I wish I was dead.
Hours passed; the dig was going well. The team had already found a few unidentifiable ship parts buried beneath the surface, a treasure in their own right, but not the one we’re looking for. I squint against the sun, looking to sniper position one. “S1 Report.” I say into my communicator. I get the triple click of all clear. I go through the same process with the other two snipers, getting the same confirmation message that all is clear. Good. I like it when things goes easy.
“Colonel, we’ve found something. It could be the artifact.”
“Alright, I’m on my way over.” I say into my communicator and head towards the main dig site recovery area. This could be it. Months of searching, months of pain and torment, months of sacrifice. The Elders say it will all be worth it if we acquire the Terran artifact, but they also said time is of the essence. That if we could decipher its whereabouts, so could the other Empires. The fact that it was in Minmatar space only gave us a slight headstart.
As I approach, I try not to get my hopes up. I don’t understand all the intricacies of science. I pay people for that. All I know is that if the Elders say it’s important, I’ll get it done.
“Here we are, sir.” one of the technicians says to me. I walk with him for a few moments until we come across a completely bare and sterile looking table. On it is a simple black box. It’s about the length of my arm, maybe half a foot high. Not at all what I was expecting them to find. “That’s it?” I ask, not really understanding what I am looking at. “That’s the outer casing, Colonel. It’s what inside that is glorious.” the technician replies, moving towards the box.
I hear the screeching of engines from above, then the sounds of laser turrets. I dive for cover to my right, but there is no cover, only sand. The technician gets incinerated by the laser turret, as does most everyone else around me.
The attack shuttle lands heavily about fifty feet in front of me, its two laser turrets appearing trained on our area.
After it secures its landing feet, the side door panel opens, hissing against this dusty desert air. They have the sun behind them, making it difficult to see how many there are, or what formation they are breaking into. Five of them walk into focus, and I feel my blood boil. There he is, that treacherous cur. My friend, I think with utter bile on my tongue. All of my suffering has been because of you. I start walking towards him, hatred burning through me. He is flanked by two on either side, carrying laser rifles. All five of them have their weapons trained on me. We are thirty feet from each other, neither side stopping.
That’s right you fool, keep walking. I feel a primal rage within me. His arrogance. His insolence. He just walks at me, by himself, unaware that he is already mine. His comrades are dead. He has nothing. What can he hope to accomplish? We will take the artifact, and take him as my prisoner, to do with as I please. Keep walking, dog. Walk towards your death.
The shuttle’s turrets aren’t moving, meaning his squad is probably all he has. I’ve already had my glasses adjust to compensate for the sun in my eyes. At twenty five feet, I give my head a slight nod. Three of them drop dead instantly. Of the two remaining, one panics, looking around for his assailent, his laser rifle pointing in every direction but mine. The Gallente is already reaching for his laser pistol. I reach for my ballistic pistols, holstered against my hips.
No! No, you will not take this from me. You are mine, Roc Wieler, you are mine!
The devil may be fast, but I am faster, and we both know it. A fourth shot rings out, and the last escort falls to his sandy grave. The Gallente immediately drops his pistol, hands reaching for air.
“I surrender. You’ve won.” he says far too smugly as he walks towards me. He disgusts me. Does he really think I’m new? Does he really think I don’t know what he is trying to accomplish stalling for time?
“I have to commend you, Roc. I didn’t think you …” I shoot him straight between the eyes. I have no interest in listening to his crap. I walk over to him, shooting him twice more in the torso, just to be sure. There is no satisfaction in this, despite the torture I suffered because of his actions. He was once my friend, and though he lost his way, I will not lose mine by making the same dark decisions and enjoy revenge.
I quickly give the orders for evac, taking our dead with us, downloading what data the technicians recovered into my datapad. We have the artifact, and undoubtedly there will be an ambush waiting for us in orbit. No capsuleer would’ve surrended so easily unless he had something else up his sleeve. I send the pre-arranged signal to the Renegades, who have been waiting this entire time behind a nearby moon, specifically to cover our exit. It’s a good exercise for them, as we are still new as a fleet. This will teach them discipline and patience.
We push hard for escape velocity, soon finding ourselves in the familiarity of cold space. The Renegades are ready and waiting, in beautiful formation. “All ships, align to Escape Marker Alpha One.” I blare over the secured channel.
That is when the Amarr fleet jumps in to ambush us, but they are too late. Before they can deploy their bubbles, we enter warp. They scramble fighters on pursuit vectors, but we didn’t just make a line for the nearest gate. We bounce around a few safe spots until our cloaked Rapier gives us the thumbs up on the gate we’ve selected for our escape.
All ships accounted for, I take the black box to my private quarters, and send a secured comm to Sam on a non military channel. He requests some three dimensional imaging scans of it, and I comply, as well as sending him our collected data. A few minutes later, he has this to say.
“Jesus Roc, do you have any idea what that thing is?” he asks.
“I know it’s Terran. I know it’s important. Why do you think I contacted you?”
“Important? Important!?! That’s all you have to say? Bloody hell, Roc, that thing could change New Eden forever.” he exclaims.
“Well, what is it then smart guy?” My patience runs thin. My patience often runs thin.
“Roc, open it up.” I am little skeptical, a little hesitant, but I know Sam. He wouldn’t tell me to do anything that would jeopardize me, my ship and my crew. I don’t know if my technicians had any special tools or process for this. I trust Sam. I open the box.
I see lots of circuitry, most of it inactive, and a small glass container with some type of electrical nodes wired into it. The container has a small glass slide suspended in it. It’s really nothing too impressive. I share that with Sam.
“You are SUCH a Brutor sometimes.” he says. “You see that slide? Zoom in on it, 20,000x magnification.” I do as requested. I see something on my monitor, but no idea what I am looking at.
“THAT, my friend, is DNA. What you are looking at is a DNA computer. There are trillions of terabytes of Terran data stored on that single strand, far more advanced than nanotechnology. It’s the single most amazing thing I have ever seen!”
“What information is in it?” I ask ignorantly.
“I can’t tell that from here. Your technicians didn’t have the equipment to store that kind of data. You’d have to bring it to me.” That probably won’t happen. As soon as we reach our rendezvous with the Liberation Force, a special ops flight team will be escorting the black box straight to Maleatu Shakor’s office.
Sam is disappointed, but duty is duty. The mission was successful. The price was high. I hope whatever data is contained on this thing was worth the cost.
One mystery solved; a new one revealed.