The Kavakian Empire – Part One Chapter 17

The Kavakian Empire
A Space Opera by Dawn Ross
Part One – First Encounter
Chapter 17
(The “The Kavakian Empire” is a sci-fi space opera by Dawn Ross. It began in August 2014.)

J.T. had nearly fallen asleep from boredom when Jori’s sharp voice jerked him alertness.

“What is that?” Jori demanded. He wasn’t talking to J.T. He was talking to a medic standing on the other side of Terk’s bed with a needle.

“It’s hippoceretine to help him heal,” the medic replied. Jori gave the man a penetrating look that make J.T. think he was trying to read the medic’s thoughts. “It’s the same injection we’ve been giving your brother every two hours.”

Terk was getting injections every two hours, but there was something about the intensity of Jori’s eyes that put J.T. on edge.

“Let me see,” Jori demanded as he stood up and made his way around the bed to where the medic stood.

Taking a step back, the medic replied, “No.” He held the needle out of Jori’s reach. His eyes looked almost fearful, which made the back of J.T.’s neck tingle. Something was wrong.

“Give it to me,” Jori demanded more forcefully. The medic shrunk back even further.

“Let him see it, Laren,” J.T. said.

Laren made a dismissive sound. “It’s nothing, Sir,” he said. “It’s just hippoceretine.”

“He’s lying,” Jori said to J.T. while still glaring at Laren.

“Why would I lie?” the medic replied.

“Let him see it,” J.T. said more forcefully, knowing that Jori could sense when someone was telling the truth or not.

“You really want me to give this needle to a child?” Laren asked with mock incredulity.

“I gave you a direct order, Laren. Give it to him now,” J.T. demanded.

“Sir, it’s just hippoceretine,” Laren said again.

Laren’s reluctance and obvious nervousness convinced J.T. that something was wrong. But before he could react, Jori used his brother’s bedside to hoist himself up and snag the needle out of Laren’s hand.

Laren reacted by trying to grab it back, but Jori quickly backed up and J.T. rushed forward. “I gave you a direct order, Laren,” J.T. shouted in Laren’s face. Laren’s eyes were wide with panic.

“Let me go!” Jori shouted. J.T. turned to see the security officers trying to take Jori into custody.

“Let him go,” J.T. told them. “It’s not him. It’s Laren.”

The officers look confused but they let Jori go. One of the officers had taken the needle from Jori and with J.T. distracted from Laren, Laren quickly went around him and tried to snag the needle from the officer’s hand. Jori swung his arm upward and hit Laren’s hand upward, making him miss the needle. J.T. grabbed the back of Laren’s shirt and pulled him back.

“Take him into custody, now,” J.T. demanded. “Jak, take that needle to Doctor Jerom and tell him I want it analyzed right away.”

Laren tried to resist when two of the officers took him by the arms. “I know who he is,” Laren shouted angrily. “I overheard the doctor talking. He’s a monster. They both are!”

Laren jerked away from the officers’ grip and lunged at Jori. He didn’t have time to attack, though, as one of the officers grabbed him again.

“They killed my family!” Laren screamed. Then to Jori, he shouted, “Gereva. Do you remember Gereva? My wife and daughter were killed because of you!”

Laren continued shouting as the officers took him away. J.T. turned to Jori to see that the boy was white. Fear? Or maybe that’s guilt, J.T. thought. Going with fear, J.T. put a comforting hand on Jori’s should and said consolingly, “It’s alright.”

Jori responded with a fiery look. “One of your men just tried to kill my brother,” he said venomously between clenched teeth.

One step forward. Two steps back, J.T. thought with trepidation.

(This story is protected by copyright) Copyright March, 2015 by Dawn Ross
Please give me your feedback. Any constructive criticism you provide will help me improve my story.

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2 Responses to “The Kavakian Empire – Part One Chapter 17”

  1. So, it’s out. I can’t say I’m surprised, it only takes one overheard conversation or misspoken word to get news traveling. There are two things that jump out at me in this chapter, and the first is that it’s kind of convenient that Laren just happened to be a medical officer. This is just a thought, but think about the tension you could create, if a lower-level officer, or even a civilian on the ship (are civilians even on this ship..?) overheard the doctor talking at the entrance to sick bay, went back to his quarters, got this assassination attempt in his head, and went to a friend who has access to sick bay supplies. He gets the poison, fakes an illness to get into the room, and then goes for it. When word of his capture gets out, the friend who helped him get the supplies starts talking because his friend has been taken into custody and you’ve got the whole ship talking. Lots of tension to work with.

    The second thing is that this could be one of those alternate POV points for you, where you follow the would-be assassin for a chapter.

    I still like what this chapter establishes though – change. Everyone, Jori and J.T. included, might have been able to kid themselves into thinking this whole thing could be quiet and peaceful, but that’s gone now.

    • Excellent idea. I could really build tension with this part. I have a tendency to jump from scene to scene because I worry I’m giving too much information. But as a result, I don’t build up enough tension and my readers don’t get into the characters.

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