Archive for June, 2015

The Kavakian Empire – Part Two Emperor Ch3b

Posted in Sci-Fi Part 2, The Kavakian Empire with tags , , , , , , , , on June 27, 2015 by Dawn Ross
prison cell bed

Prison cell bed

The Kavakian Empire

A Space Opera by Dawn Ross

Part Two – The Emperor

Chapter 3b

(You are in the midst of the continuing saga of The Kavakian Empire. This is part two of the sci-fi story so if you haven’t already, be sure to check out part one. Tabs on the right.)

The brig was foul and murky. J.T. and his crewmen were put three to a cell. There were enough beds for each, as well a food and water dispenser, and even a toilet. But the entire space was grungy. The floor was sticky and the walls were stained. And the place smelled like excrement.

J.T. sat on one of the beds and rubbed his wrists where the guards had removed the bonds. Harley and Lt. Sam Simmonds sat on the beds across from him doing the same. Both looked despondent. J.T. realized he probably looked just as downcast as they. He definitely felt that way.

“We’re going to die, aren’t we, Sir?” Harley asked.

“It certainly seems so,” J.T. replied, too glum to sugarcoat it for the young man.

“I can’t believe those boys pretended not to know us,” Simmonds said. His grey mustache turned downward when he frowned. When Jori was on the Odyssey, he and Simmonds had seemed to get along well. Simmonds, being a science officer, was highly impressed with the young prince’s own knowledge of the sciences.

“Figures,” Harley added. “The Tredons are a bunch of murdering cutthroats.”

“They’re just boys,” J.T. said. Despite his current situation, he couldn’t help but defend them. “Let’s just see what happens,” J.T. added, trying to sound optimistic.

If Captain Arden had had his way, J.T. would have been on the Odyssey instead of on the ground. But Vice Admiral Belmont insisted that J.T. was the best man to lead the ground force. It was logical. However, J.T. suspected the admiral had some reserve about J.T.s part in the Kimpke incident. Although he agreed that Rear Admiral Zimmer’s orders had gone too far, he didn’t like the fact that J.T. had disobeyed a direct order. The ground force was the best out of the way place to put such a man, especially since the admiral probably didn’t believe the Tredons would have made it to the ground anyway.

At least J.T. had been assigned a good team. Of those who were also captured, four were lieutenant junior grades and the other five were full lieutenants. Their rank wouldn’t save them though. Only Barslow and Simmonds had a chance of surviving. Barslow was an engineer and Simmonds was a science officer. Perhaps the emperor might have a use for his two tactical officers, Mendosa and Walden, as well. Everyone else may have minored in the sciences, but they probably didn’t know enough to keep them alive long enough for help to arrive.

Who’s to say whether Captain Arden is even alive? J.T. thought. The captain had faced the Tredon warships directly. If Emperor Kavak had time to dismantle the laser, then the Odyssey and the other Alliance ships must have been taken out of the picture. J.T. hoped the ships were able to retreat. More than that, though, he hoped Captain Arden hadn’t been killed or seriously injured. Robert Arden was the kind of man who would do just about anything to rescue his crew.

J.T.’s thoughts were disturbed when two big warriors stopped outside the energy shield of his cell door.

“You,” the older greying warrior said sternly while pointing directly at J.T. “Come.”

J.T. stood reluctantly as the younger man disabled the charged shield. It occurred to him that he could try to fight, but seeing how big the men were and that there were two others just down the hall made him think otherwise. What’s the point? he asked himself. Where would I even go?

Before he could think of anything to do, the older man grabbed him by the arm and twisted him around. Next thing J.T. knew, both his hands were cuffed behind his back. Harley and Simmonds looked like they wanted to jump up and help, but the younger Tredon Dragon warrior stood over them with a daring look. J.T. gave a subtle shake of his head to his two crewmen, and then let himself be led out of the cell.

“Where are you going with him?” one of the Tredon guards asked.

“Prince’s orders,” the older man replied. “You got a problem with that?”

“No, Sir,” the guard replied.

The greying man didn’t say which prince. Although Terk had kicked him earlier, J.T. felt a little hopefulness mixed in with his apprehension.

His hope was dashed, though, when the two men took him to an isolated room and clamped him into a metal chair that had obviously been used for torture.

Both warriors stood silently in front of him in an at-ease fashion as though waiting for something. Although the older man’s hair had a lot of grey, he still appeared to be a strong and healthy warrior. His demeanor was cool, but he looked ready to spring into action at moment’s notice.

The other warrior was younger, about J.T.’s age. He wasn’t clean-shaven like the elder man. He had a sparse mustache and a small patch of hair on his chin. And his black hair was wavy, which did not appear to be a common feature among the Tredons.

J.T. felt anxious, but determined not to show it. He was about to ask the men what they were waiting for when the door to the room opened.

It was Jori. His face was unreadable as he placed himself before J.T. in front of the two guards.

“I told you that if our situations were reversed, you would not be treated the same,” Jori said evenly. J.T. didn’t know how to reply, so Jori added, “If it were up to me, this wouldn’t have happened. But it’s not up to me.”

“Why haven’t you told your father about what happened?” J.T. asked, referring to how Captain Arden of the Odyssey had saved him and his brother’s life.

“It would do more harm than good,” he replied. J.T. had felt slightly hopeful when he saw Jori come in the room. But the boy’s placid look made him uneasy. “He believes any sort of sentiment is a weakness. Besides, if he did know he might suspect Terk and I alerted you to this plan. He’d probably realize that he’d have both the laser and the scientists in custody if it weren’t for us.”

“So what happens next? Are you going to kill me?”

“I wouldn’t do that, even if father ordered me,” Jori said, again without emotion.

“Torture me then?” J.T. asked sourly.

“I’m not, no. But you will be tortured. Terk may be compelled to participate. But believe me when I say it is not something that either of us wants to do.”

“So do something,” J.T. said.

Jori huffed. “It’s not that easy,” he objected, finally showing some emotion. “I’ve managed to alter your records to show that you and your crew may be useful in getting the laser fixed. My father won’t kill you just yet. But he will make sure you’re properly motivated.”

“What then?” J.T. asked. “How will we get out of here?”

“I don’t know.” Jori replied dolefully. “I’m sorry this is happening. I truly am.”

J.T. nodded his head. He wanted to say he understood. But did he? He was going to die here. He just knew it. “What about Hanna?” J.T. asked. “That man is going to rape her.”

“He’s not,” Jori said. “Terk is taking care of it. She will be hurt, though.”

J.T. was somewhat relieved. Somewhat. “He’s eventually going to kill us, you know. We can’t fix that laser, even if we wanted to.”

Jori’s brow furrowed. “I know,” he replied sadly.

“Are you sure your father wouldn’t let us go if he knew we rescued you?”

“I’m sure. You mustn’t say anything to anyone either. Only a couple of my men, including Wexam and Master Jetser here, know,” he said indicating the two guards behind him. “If my father suspects Terk and I have a concern for you, he will keep a closer eye on us and we won’t be able to do anything more to help you.”

“Or worse,” Master Jetser said. “He will order the boys to torture you to death in order to force any such sentiments they have out of them.” Master Jetser had a surprisingly kind voice for such a gruff man.

Jori nodded in regrettable agreement.

J.T. scowled in concern. What kind of monster would do such a thing? he asked himself. The same kind of monster who would allow a woman to be raped and would torture everyone just for the hell of it.

“Tell the other members of your crew to play along as best they can,” Jori said. “But don’t tell them how they’ve come to be recognized as experts. I realize some of them will suspect, but I don’t want anyone accidentally blurting anything when they are being questioned. Understood?”

J.T. nodded.

“Good. Now I suggest that when we take you back to your cell, you look like you’re in pain or someone will wonder what happened in here.”

“Thank you,” J.T. said with sincerity. “I know you can’t do much, but I appreciate anything you can do.”

Jori gave a disheartened look in reply.

(This sci-fi saga is protected by copyright) Copyright May, 2015 by Dawn Ross

You may share this sci-fi novella so long as you link back to this website and mention, The Kavakian Empire by Dawn Ross.

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The Kavakian Empire – Part Two Emperor Ch3a

Posted in Sci-Fi Part 2, The Kavakian Empire with tags , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2015 by Dawn Ross
space ship corridor

Corridor of the Kavakian space ship, the Dragon

The Kavakian Empire

A Space Opera by Dawn Ross

Part Two – The Emperor

Chapter 3a

(Part two of The Kavakian Empire novella continues. If you haven’t read the first part of this sci-fi story, check out the tabs on the right.)

Two giant men on either side gripped Hanna’s arms painfully. They were hurting her but she dared not give them the satisfaction of letting them know. She pursed her lips in grim defiance as they escorted her down an empty corridor. Hanna had no choice but to walk with them. If she decided to stop, they would simply lift her by her arms… or drag her.

The reality of what was about to happen hit her when they stopped at a door Hanna suspected was the entrance to someone’s living quarters. She dropped her weight and jerked her arms in hope that she would catch them unprepared. But they held her tight.

Fear seized her. She struggled violently. But she couldn’t do anything very effectively with the way these big men held her. Before she had time to consider another move, they had her inside the room and one wrist cuffed onto a metal ring located by the bed.

“No point in fighting it, Sweetie,” one of the men said. He smiled at her in a way that made her cringe. His eyes were glinted with lust. He moved to grab one of her breasts, but the other man stopped him.

“Lank will kill you if you take her before he has his time with her.”

“I don’t give a fuck about Lank,” the lusty man said with a glower.

“Don’t be stupid,” the other man replied. “You’ll get your turn. Besides, she’s hardly worth risking your neck over.”

The lusty man grunted in agreement.

When the two left, Hanna was shaking so badly she could hardly stand. She breathed heavily and wondered if she had even been breathing a few moments ago. Her heart raced uncontrollably and for a moment she thought she was going to pass out.

Hanna tried to calm herself by taking a slow deep breath. But taking in the odor of the room almost made her retch. It reeked. It smelled like horrific body odor mixed with something rotten.

When Hanna’s heart finally began to slow down, she took a better look at her surroundings. The small room was beyond dirty. The floor was carpeted, but the grime was so thick in places that it looked slick from being trampled into the fibers. Empty liquor bottles and half-eaten food littered the floor and furnishings. Even the bed had garbage on it.

A closer look at the bed revealed grossly stained sheets. Hanna almost broke out into a sob. Not only was this brute going to rape her, he was going to do it on this filthy bed. No, I’m not going to cry, she told herself.

Hanna tried to pull her wrist free, but the cuffs wouldn’t budge. She jerked harder, back and forth, ignoring the pain in her wrist.

“You fucking bastards!” she yelled. Despite the promise she had just made to herself, Hanna began to cry in earnest. She couldn’t break free. This was going to happen and there was nothing she could do to stop it.

Hanna wept a little longer before she got a hold of herself and resolved to be brave. If this is going to happen, she thought, I won’t give him the pleasure of crying. She could try to fight it, but maybe he’ll like it if she tried to fight. Perhaps she should just lay there lifeless and let him do his thing. Doing nothing would make his excitement very short-lived.

But no, Hanna couldn’t imagine just allowing herself to be used. She was going to fight no matter how pointless her situation was.

Hanna’s heart leapt to her throat when the chamber door suddenly opened. To her surprise, it was Terk who entered the room.

When Terk had been on her ship, he never leered at her. Nor did he do anything sexually overt. He did smirk at her once when he noticed she was a female security guard, but that was all. Seeing him here now, though, petrified her. When she had met him that time before, it had been easy to forget he was anything but a boy. He did not look like a boy now. He was tall, as tall as her. He wasn’t built like the men were, but he was in good shape. His black reptilian armor gave him a sinister look, one that was enhanced by the deadpan lack of expression on his face.

Somehow, Hanna found her courage. She spewed a string of curses at him. “You little shit! You’re not man enough to take me. I bet your balls haven’t even dropped yet,” she screamed.

Terk scowled but said nothing in reply.

Hanna knew in the back of her mind that antagonizing him would get her nowhere, but she just couldn’t help herself. “We should have let you die when you were on our ship! You don’t deserve to live, you warted blackbeast.”

Terk looked angry as he approached her. She tried to kick at him and swung her free hand in a fist. He deflected all her assaults effortlessly.

“You won’t take me without a fight, you bastard!” she yelled.

“I don’t want you,” Terk growled menacingly. “And by the time I get done with you, no one else will want you either.”

Before Hanna could reply, Terk grabbed her by the back of the neck and pinned her to the wall. She had intended to fight him but he was too strong and too fast. He had her completely subdued. Her fear really set in now, especially when she looked into his eyes. They were dark and unwavering, cold and at least a little angry.

But instead of groping her or forcing her to the bed, he injected a hypospray into her neck. Then he let her go and stepped back.

Hanna looked at him in surprise.

Terk said, “I’ve just injected you with a pseudo-strain of Ghondorian venascabia. You’ll develop a rash in moments. When Lank sees you, he’ll be pissed. He’ll beat you, but he won’t rape you.”

Hanna swallowed hard. Her heart was racing. She was still afraid, but she was also confused. “Um, thanks,” she replied with uncertainty.

“Don’t thank me,” Terk replied without emotion. “The beating will not be pleasant. This is for the pain,” he said, handing her another hypospray. “Hide it as best as you can.”

With that, Terk left. And a moment later, Hanna began to feel itchy. Ghondorian venascabia was one of the most disgusting sexually transmitted diseases that a person could get.

(This sci-fi saga is protected by copyright) Copyright May, 2015 by Dawn Ross

You may share this sci-fi novella so long as you link back to this website and mention, The Kavakian Empire by Dawn Ross.

The Kavakian Empire – Part Two Emperor Ch2c

Posted in Sci-Fi Part 2, The Kavakian Empire with tags , , , , , , , , on June 13, 2015 by Dawn Ross

The Kavakian Empire

A Space Opera by Dawn Ross

Part Two – The Emperor

Chapter 2c

(Want to read the part one novella and the first chapter of part two? Check out the archives beginning August 2014. You can also click through to the oldest post under The Kavakian Empire category, or you can send me an email through my About Dawn page.)

Clunk. Clang-clang.

Emperor Devon Kavak turned towards the sound and saw his men trying to pretend nothing had happened. One man mumbled a curse, then pointedly looked away when he saw Devon glaring at him. Jako picked up whatever metal piece had fallen off the large laser part the other men had dropped.

“Damn it! Be careful,” Devon yelled. “You break anything, you’ll pay for it in blood.” Devon tried to give each of the five men an enraged look in order to emphasize the threat, but none would meet his eyes.

“I want you to move fast, but not so fast that you blunder,” Devon added for all in the room to hear. They didn’t have much time to get the laser dismantled and off this desolate planet. Fourteen hours was the least amount of time it would take for the Alliance to return with reinforcements.

Defeating the Alliance had been easy. Devon used cloaking devices to hide his ships as they left Tredon territory and again as they approached Thendi. His ships would have arrived weeks ago, but cloaked ships can’t move very fast.

Once his warships had arrived, everything moved at a much quicker pace. Devon was a master tactician. His two warships easily wounded the three pathetic Alliance ships. Ships belonging to the Alliance Core generally had more firepower than those of many other races, but not nearly as much as a Tredon warship. They were faster than Devon’s ships, sure, but Devon was even faster with his targeting calculations. He already had two Alliance ships limping away with their tails between their legs by the time his Anacondas landed on the planet surface.

Devon wished he had been able to join the ground forces. He relished the hand-to-hand combat he had done in his youth. But his men were more than capable. The Alliance was scattered and the laser secured in just under four hours.

Too bad we can’t disassemble this laser just as fast, Devon said to himself. He tried to contain his impatience as the men worked, but he couldn’t help but to pace back and forth. At least his pacing seemed to inspire the men to be busy.

“No, no, no!” Jako said to one of the warriors working on the laser. “You have to remove that valve first. And not with a hammer either.” Turning to another man he yelled, “Biskol! It doesn’t turn in that direction. It goes the other way.” Then back to the other man, “Put that hammer down!”

Jako knew what he was doing better than anyone. The only person who came close to understanding the things Jako understood about this scientific crap was Jori. Where is that boy anyway? Devon asked himself. He glanced around the room and noticed not a single man was idle. But his youngest son was nowhere to be seen.

Before he thought to ask anyone, he was distracted again by Jako’s yelling. “Damn it, Raldof! I told you not to use the hammer.”

Jako did not have the military might of these other warriors, so few took him seriously. Normally Devon could care less, but this laser was too important. “Raldof!” he called to the man. “If I see you with that hammer one more time, I’ll break your arm off and beat you with it.” Raldof tossed the hammer aside without complaint and gave Jako a dirty look that told him he’d get even with him later.

While capturing the laser had been easy, taking it apart and reassembling it would not be. And it would be even more difficult to get it to working condition. As far as Devon knew, the scientists had not yet finished it.

Those men we’ve captured better have the skills needed to complete this thing, Devon thought to himself. My men certainly won’t be able to do it. My youngest son knows more than they do. Where the hell is that boy?

Jori had a higher intellect than any of his other sons had ever had. But he was also the most troublesome. The boy questioned too much and was often too squeamish to do the things that most warriors knew needed be done. Terk did what he was told. And he was good at it most of the time. He was smart, too, but not like Jori. Even though Jori was young, he had a lot of potential. He wasn’t as good of a fighter as Terk, but he was a better fighter than Terk was when he was his age. Jori had excellent tactical skills as well. Damn that boy. Where is he?

Even though Devon was irritated with his son at the moment, he really had little to complain about. Whatever shortcomings he had, Terk made up for and vice versa. If the two didn’t kill one another, as some of his other sons had done, they’d make a great team that would continue to exalt the Kavakian line.

The Kavakian Empire was waning, no thanks to Devon’s own father. Devon’s great-great grandfather had held nearly twice the territory. Part of it was lost when a wormhole collapsed, cutting them off from the Quevar system in a distant galaxy. That wasn’t really his father’s fault, but losing the Pentam system was.

Devon desperately needed this laser to not only subdue his internal dissidents and fight off his external enemies like the Alliance, but also to reconquer the Pentam system. Devon’s father lost it when Devon was about Jori’s age. When he became emperor, he tried to retake it, but two things kept him from succeeding. The Pentam system was distant and Devon couldn’t amass enough force to take it without leaving the rest of his territory vulnerable to his greedy lords. Lord Falcorn especially would take advantage of Devon’s absence and take control.

The second reason Devon couldn’t reconquer the Pentam system was because their cities were protected by powerful shields. Devon’s ships couldn’t penetrate them. He believed this laser would be able to do it with one decisive strike. And it could be done with just a handful of ships, allowing the others to stay behind and keep Lord Falcorn in check.

“Your Eminence,” General Trevine said. “Jetser is reporting that fighting in the canyon has begun again. I believe the Thendi have regrouped.”

“Damn!” Devon replied. He didn’t need to give General Trevine useless orders like ‘gather our men’ or ‘kill them’. The general had probably already done all he could. By reporting to Devon, he was asking for his tactical expertise. And to give that, Devon needed to go out and get an aerial view of the fighting.

“Mavers, you’re in charge. Make sure they hurry without breaking anything,” Devon told the colonel. As an afterthought, he added, “And find out where the hell Jori is and tell him to get his ass down here.”

(This sci-fi saga is protected by copyright) Copyright May, 2015 by Dawn Ross

You may share this sci-fi story so long as you link back to this website and mention, The Kavakian Empire by Dawn Ross.

The Kavakian Empire – Part Two Emperor Ch2b

Posted in Sci-Fi Part 2, The Kavakian Empire with tags , , , , , , , , on June 6, 2015 by Dawn Ross

The Kavakian Empire

A Space Opera by Dawn Ross

Part Two – The Emperor

Chapter 2b

(Want to read the part one novella and the first chapter of part two? Check out the archives beginning August 2014. You can also click through to the oldest post under The Kavakian Empire category, or you can send me an email through my About Dawn page.)

Jori’s stomach churned as he was beamed onto his father’s ship along with Terk and the others. With most of the warriors on the planet below, the corridors were empty and eerily quiet. No one spoke as the heavy boots of the Dragon warriors echoed off the walls. Even the Alliance prisoners were quiet.

Jori could sense the prisoners’ apprehension, but he could also feel their grim resolve. He could see it too, with the way they set their jaws and walked purposely, as though they were guests rather than prisoners. The people of the Alliance may not have the mentality of a Tredon warrior, but Jori didn’t see them as cowards. They appeared to face their fate as well as any warrior.

Jori used his senses to single out J.T.’s thoughts. The commander was just as uneasy and yet as determined as the others. Jori felt a sense of betrayal from him as well. I did warn him, Jori thought sullenly. Still. Jori felt a wave of nausea. His gut tightened and he swallowed down the sour taste rising in his throat.

A couple of warriors split apart from the group with Lieutenant Hanna Sharkey. The Alliance men began to protest, but the Dragon warriors quickly beat them into submission. Jori winced when Kelar hit J.T. hard enough to knock him senseless. Prince or not, there was little Jori could do to stop it.

He remembered Lt. Sharkey as one of his guards when he stayed with J.T. on the Alliance ship. He had never spoken to her, but he sensed that even though she hadn’t trusted Jori, she at least didn’t have any malice towards him. Even if she had been his worst enemy, though, it made Jori’s stomach turn at the thought of what Lank wanted to do to her. No one deserved Lank’s form of cruelty.

Jori touched Terk’s elbow and stopped him before he could follow the larger group to the prisoner cells.

“We can’t let Lank have her,” Jori said quietly so that the receding group couldn’t hear him.

“It’s too late,” Terk replied. “He’s already claimed her.”

“It’s not too late,” Jori said. He faced his brother and leaned in, locking eyes. “You can use that stuff we used last time. I know Terena keeps it handy.”

Terk shook his head. “You can’t save everyone. Eventually the men will catch on.”

“I can’t stand by and do nothing,” Jori replied. His jaw clenched and his brows drew together. “Not this time. These people saved our lives.”

“They didn’t. Captain Arden did,” Terk countered.

Jori frowned at the weak argument. “These aren’t bad people. They don’t deserve this. And it is our fault they’re here.”

Terk sighed audibly and crossed his arms. “Damn it, Jori. If we keep helping people, we’re going to get caught. There are two of us, remember? Father only needs one son.”

“Then I will do it myself,” Jori said. He turned abruptly and was about to leave when Terk caught his arm and turned him back.

“All right,” he said. “You’re right. We owe them. But this has to stop. Until I am emperor, we have to go along with our father.”

Jori scowled. There was a time when he had idolized his father. But he was growing to hate him. The more he watched his father hurt people, the stronger his resentment grew. But he didn’t argue the point with Terk this time. They had argued about it so many times before. While they both agreed the on dangers of defying their father, Jori was more willing to take risks.

Terk wasn’t a coward, though. If anything, Jori was the weaker one. He was the one who gave into his emotions most often, especially now when it concerned J.T. He liked J.T. A lot. The thought of J.T. being beaten or tortured to death because of his father made his chest tighten painfully and bile rise up in his throat. Jori had to think of something to save him.

“Fine,” Jori replied. He snatched the scanner from Terk’s hand. “You get the stuff from Terena. I’ll take this.”

“What are you going to do?” Terk asked. His eyes narrowed in suspicion.

“Nothing risky, I promise.”

Terk pressed his lips together and scowled. “Well, hurry up,” he said. “You’re supposed to be helping with the laser.”

Father can wait. I’m going to help J.T.! Jori gave his brother his winning smile.

Terk let out a capitulating sigh and rolled his eyes. “Be careful.”

 

(This sci-fi saga is protected by copyright) Copyright May, 2015 by Dawn Ross

You may share this sci-fi story so long as you link back to this website and mention, The Kavakian Empire by Dawn Ross.