Mynxee is back, and she’s party of Stay Frosty.
Author’s note: Please read Mynxee’s The Pirate & The Colonel chapter before continuing.
DAL VI – MOON 1
REPUBLIC JUSTICE DEPARMENT TRIBUNAL
“We’re sorry, Colonel, but we need you to come with us.” the first security escort said as the two of them stood inside of my quarters, having bypassed my security lock. They wore the uniforms and riot gear of TLF Military Police, which meant something had gone wrong, horribly wrong, and I was implicated.
I hadn’t slept a wink that night, and was still working on my rescue plan for Mynxee when they had arrived early in the morning. I wasn’t at my best physically or emotionally, being sleep deprived and wrought with distress over the entire situation.
“May I at least inquire as to why?” I asked politely, yet firmly, slowly reaching to unclip the holster on my sidearm furthest away from their view. I wasn’t about to shoot an MP, but I wasn’t going to go anywhere until someone started giving me answers.
Shakor wouldn’t respond to any of my meeting requests or comm messages. None of my own staff involved on the case would give me any information, even off the record, not even that Halwick kid I had taken under my wing not so long ago. I couldn’t fault any of them for it, duty was duty, and in a way I was proud of their resolve to follow orders, but my mind was set, and I was as stubborn as they came.
I needed to rescue her. I needed to show her I loved her. If that meant leaving this life behind, then so be it; she was worth it. The actions of my superiors in the last twenty four hours had shown me just how valued any one person truly was, regardless of their prior contributions to the cause. We were all just disposable pawns, played when needed, removed from the game board when not.
I was nobody’s pawn.
“Sir, please. Remove your sidearms slowly and place them on the floor.” The second escort said, seeing what I was attempting. I slowly removed my pistols and placed them on the floor, the first escort having his hand on his stun baton while cautiously approaching me. They were treating me like they would any other criminal. It was infuriating.
I stood suddenly, pushing my shoulders back broadly, making them aware of my full presence. They both started for a moment, quickly regaining their composure, one grabbing my wrists and securing binders on me, the second reading me the charges against me.
“Colonel Roc Wieler, you are hereby charged with treason of the highest degree against the Tribal Liberation Force and against the Minmatar Republic. You are also charged with murder in the second degree for the death of Spear Lieutenant Daul Halwick.”
The words hit me like a frigate to the face. Daul was dead? How was that even possible? I had seen him only two days prior. And treason against the Republic? I would never do such a thing. What the hell was going on?
I was thankful that I hadn’t made a scene, or engaged the MPs directly in my quarters; whatever was going on, that would certainly have made things worse for me.
With one MP on each arm, I was walked out of my room during the morning rush hour at Dal station. My sunglasses were removed and confiscated, and I felt completely exposed and vulnerable.
A crowd of pedestrians quickly gathered, gossip spreading like rampant wildfire amongst them as I was escorted into a nearby hovercart, and driven away down the esplanade, strangers staring and judging me the entire way. I hung my head low, feeling the burning shame inflicted upon me by them, but knowing I had done nothing wrong and would eventually be exonerated.
“Goddammit!” Maleatu Shakor, Sanmatar of the Republic screamed at me, spittle dripping from his mouth. His face was crimson with an anger I had never seen in him before, veins viciously pulsating in his forehead.
I was seated in a small interrogation room on a metal chair bolted to the concrete floor. A single recessed light fixture illuminated us from above. The two MPs stood on either side of me, with two more heavily armed MPs guarding the door, as well as one more watching from behind a secured mirror panel. My legs had been secured to ankle clamps on the chair, in addition to the binders still secured at my wrists.
“Just talk to me! Tell me why you did it!” Shakor said. “Was it money? Was it power? Did I not mentor you? Did I not give you every opportunity you wanted? Why did you do this?!” More spittle flew from his mouth.
“Talk to you?” I replied, my own anger threatening to make my situation worse. “You mean, like you’ve been talking to me the last few days? If you hadn’t kept me in the dark on this entire operation I could’ve helped prevent this tragedy. If you had…” I was cut off mid-sentence by a stinging slap from the Sanmatar.
“You forget your place, Colonel.” Shakor said, rubbing his hand from the force of his blow. I could feel my cheek swelling, knowing there would be a fine bruise there. Even though he was the most powerful politician in the Republic, the man was an accomplished warrior first, and those were skills you never forgot.
“I don’t answer to you.” Maleatu said, poking his finger into my chest. “You answer to me. Do you get that? Do you understand that?” He repeatedly poked me. “You’ve been spoiled with privilege.” he added.
“You had such potential,” he continued on, turning and walking away from me. “You had so much promise. I was so blinded, forgive the pun, by what I saw in you. You could’ve been a great leader, a wonderful politician. Don’t you see I was grooming you to be the next Sanmatar?”
I felt like a child who had disappointed his father one too many times, had crossed a line where unconditional love no longer applied. I was being disowned by my mentor, but moreso, by the Sanmatar of the Republic. The worst feeling in all of this was that I hadn’t been part of any of the things I stood accused of.
“So let me ask you once again, Colonel Wieler; why did you do it? Was it love? Did you love her? Loved her enough to murder one of your own men? You are a disgrace to the uniform; a disgrace to me.”
“Sanmatar, please, as I’ve said every time I’ve been asked, I had nothing to do with this.” My anger had been replaced with fear. Not fear for the ramifications to the Republic or fear of how the press would feast on this; it had been repeatedly hammered into my dense skull lately that I simply wasn’t that important in the grand scheme of things. It was a fear of failure. I had worked so hard at my career, tirelessly put in effort towards making my life successful in the ways that mattered most: loyalty, honesty, integrity, morality, and now I was being perceived much in the same way I was when held in captivity by the Amarr as a child.
I was a dog.
The Sanmatar was visibly trembling with thinly held rage.
He stormed towards me, his hand raised, his mouth open, and I prepared for another blow. But then he stopped, holding the pose for a moment. He closed his mouth, lowered his hand, and spoke to me gently. His words cut me open more than any physical attack he could’ve made.
“You disappoint me, son.” was all he said, then turned and left the room.
There was no room for self-pity. A good man had died. That is what mattered.
I’m sorry, Daul. I thought to myself. You deserved better, kid.
I had gone over possible scenarios in my mind as to what had could’ve gone down, and came up with countless scenarios, each vastly different from the other.
There were only two themes in common amongst them:
I didn’t know how, or why, and I didn’t honestly believe she was capable of doing something so cold blooded, but no matter how it happened, she was responsible for his death. His blood was on her hands… and mine for having ever been so naively taken in by her in the first place.
I nearly laughed out loud at my latest self realization; how quickly passionate and fierce love could transform into vengeful and unrelenting hate. Mynxee had finally made it clear what her position was regarding us, and it suited me just fine.
I swore to myself that one day, no matter where or how it happened, I would hold Mynxee accountable for her actions. There would be no secured return to the Republic for her. There would be no trial; no incarceration.
There was going to be hell to pay. Hell. To. Pay.
This had been brewing for months and there was nobody to blame but myself.
I could’ve sat philosophically, overanalyzing my motives that brought this moment about, but really, now was the time for action. It didn’t matter if it was done with good intentions; it didn’t matter if it wasn’t. Perhaps in my subconscious it had been a grab at power, I’m sure Sard say would say it was overcompensation, but was it? And again, did it matter? No.
The truth of the situation left me cold. Mynxee, the CEO of the pirate corporation Hellcats, and perhaps the only woman to ever melt my heart, had been captured and interrogated by the very task force I had assembled and set in motion. In principle, I was fine with it; I had warned/pleaded/begged/lectured her since we first became romantically involved that the life she had chosen would inevitably lead her to ruin. The irony of course is that I never once considered it might ruin me.
I had to save her. Wasn’t that the right thing to do?
The dilemma was that I had sworn to serve the Republic at all costs, regardless of my personal feelings. Duty was duty, and it was my strict adherence to my duty that had elevated me to the position I had earned through blood, sweat and tears.
There were few Matar Colonels in the Republic, and I held that honour proudly. The Republic was slowly gaining momentum, slowly redefining its identity, remembering its once proud heritage, and coming together as a unified people. We just needed more time, and more leaders driven to embracing our people, driving them forwards into glory; I wanted to be one of those leaders. It rang true to my heart.
And yet Mynxee was in my heart as well. We had shared much together, and I cherished those memories, and the emotions that welled up inside of me upon thinking of them. The thought of continuing this life without her was almost too much bear. Was this love?
I slammed my fist against the wall of my quarters, as I laid uncomfortably on my bed, having been tossing and turning all night. An entire day had already passed since the Sanmatar had first delivered the news of Mynxee’s detention, as well as following that up with a clear understanding of my role in this scenario. I was strictly forbidden access to this prisoner, as our romantic relationship was a well known rumour that if discovered to be true could bring about such a fallout that would ruin both my military and political careers.
Double dipping? The head of the Anti-Pirate Task Force romantically involved with an infamous pirate. That is how the tabloids would read.
I hated to admit it, but the Sanmatar was right. The Republic was still too fragile; a scandal like this would only weaken us. I knew my duty, and it was to the Republic. Forgive me, Mynxee, I had thought to myself at that realization, but felt at peace with the decision. It wasn’t my fault she led the life she did. It wasn’t my fault she was foolish enough to get herself captured.
So why did I feel so damned guilty?
All day, my heart grew heavier and heavier, my conscience weighing me down until I could barely function as a pilot, my thoughts a jumbled blur that half the time spilled over into commands to my Aura unit, which she couldn’t process properly.
I grounded myself temporarily, until I could get my head back in the game. One single woman shouldn’t have been able to affect me so. It was more than physical love, though her face possessed such radiant beauty as to be able to get her way from any man. Her body was sculpted to athletic perfection, but not to the point of losing a single ounce of femininity. And don’t even get me started on her hair! Thick, red, flowing dreadlocks, some down to her heart shaped, firm ass, man!
I pulled myself from that line of thinking, as it clearly wasn’t going to help the situation any.
Shutting myself into my quarters, I spent the rest of my day trying to access the reports surrounding her incarceration, only to find that my access had been revoked. I didn’t know what else to do, and lay torn about the issue.
“Do you want to throw away your career for a woman?” I voiced out loud, hoping that maybe talking myself through it would be of benefit. “Do you even love her? Do you even know if she loves you? Better be damn sure old man.”
I sighed heavily.
“What if she doesn’t? What if you do all this, throw away everything, simply to have her deny your affection? Then what are you left with? Nothing but regret and a broken heart. No woman is worth that. Never forget that.”
I rolled over onto my stomach, still unable to get comfortable. Usually, I was asleep minutes after my head hit the pillow; no such luck tonight.
“But what if she does love you and you do nothing? You’re the only one that can save her, and think of how grateful she’ll be. Of course she loves you, look at all you’ve been through together. You think that sexual tension is just for show? She wants you as much as you want her. Why do you think you can’t sleep? If you’re willing to listen to your heart, you know what the right thing is to do.”
I sat straight up, my moment of epiphany upon me.
I had to do it. I had to rescue her. I had to be with her.
Motherfucker, Mynxee thought to herself, curling her legs tightly to her chest on a stone bench within her cell. She had been there three days, and hadn’t even heard from him. Goddamn him!
She was left only in basic undergarments, and was shivering with cold; her cell seeming very archaic compared to some of the prisons she had spent time in over the years. Leave it to us Minmatar to have the crappiest jails in New Eden, she echoed in her mind, laughing. It had been a long time since she’d been in a Republic jail.
The dank walls were split only by the solid steel door with two slits in it, one at eye level for the guard to check on her, the other much lower to slide food to her. She had eaten some horrible food in her lifetime, but even this had been pushing the limits of her intestinal fortitude.
Thinking of food made her stomach grumble. The door double tapped, and despite herself, she hoped it was Roc. Her hope didn’t spring from longing or romantic desire, or some typical notion that he would somehow magically set things right, and she would be free, no. She wanted to see him personally so she could spit on him, tell him to fuck himself and his misguided ethics, tell him she didn’t need to be saved from the life she loved, and relish in the resulting look on his face.
Yes, she cared about him deeply at one point, but he had gone too far; he had crossed the line with this latest escapade of his. The Hellcats and the Bastards wouldn’t stand for this. She knew she wouldn’t be here much longer, one way or the other.
The upper slit slid open, revealing piercing blue eyes. It wasn’t Roc. It was the same man that brought her food every evening shift; he had called himself Daul.
He was the only one that had been gentle with her, the only one to treat her as a human being, and not some stray, sickly dog that deserved to be beaten.
The lower slit opened, and he pushed a tray of hot food into her cell. Her stomach growled in earnest, the scent of the hot dumplings the foulest aroma she had ever known.
She devoured the plate of food, gagging only once on its horrid taste, picturing her favourite steak dinner and wine as she ate.
With food in her stomach, her temperment softened slightly, and her thoughts turned once again to Roc Wieler. The Colonel, she harumphed sarcastically.
Where had they gone wrong? Had it been destined to fail from the very beginning? Was she so blinded by his chiselled jaw and carved body that she had let her judgement waver?
Her heart raced thinking of him now. He is dead sexy, she allowed herself to indulge, remembering his touch, the security and warmth of his arms around her.
And she loved his insecurity. He hid it well, but nowhere near as well as he thought. It added a humourous awkwardness to the otherwise ‘gruff’ persona he projected. She wondered how long he had worked on that, and if he really thought anyone bought into it.
That made her chuckle slightly, the first time she had smiled since being brought here.
She scowled at the realization, her mind racing to scorn once more.
Whatever they had shared, it obviously hadn’t meant as much to him as it had to her. Fuck him.