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Buckle In
Summary: A standard passenger run to La Terre gets a little scary on two fronts: first off, an encounter with a rather strange individual that just might be associated with HenchCorp. Second, the ship's pilot decides to have a little fun at the passengers' expense.
Cast: Long, Malion, Rillitan, Swiftfoot, Tiana
Air Date: 2006.03.07


Landing Pad <New Alhira: Demaria>
...........................................................................

A large area of ground has been flattened out and filled with thickly poured ferrocrete; yellow lines and blinking lights mark off landing pads, taxi lanes, and runways. A large building that serves as the small spaceport's terminal sits at the edge of the area, opposite the tall flight traffic control tower. Service crews stand by to help people through the decontamination corridor. To the west, far past the outskirts of the spaceport, lies the blunt Stubtooth Mountains.

...........................................................................


Malion is loitering around the militia hanger, looking overly pleased at himself. Rill and Silvereye are standing nearby talking.

Rillitan smirks, "Right, right. It's not about the laws here, amazingly, it's about you knowing more about the spaceport here." the Timonae pulls his brows further down with his features, frowning, "Would there be anyway to access passenger information, to see if any names crop up... Like that of Dayton. See where he's going."

Silvereye shakes his head to Rillitan. "That information is private, Rillitan. You should know that. We're not gonna list who's on the shuttles out of here, there's not reason to and it's not our place asking people to publicize their visits here."

Swiftfoot pads in from the decon corridor, paws in her pockets. She flicks her tail to Malion, and pads over to him. "You goin with, chief? Orr did you just want me to scurry on out?" She looks over at the other conversation, blinking briefly, but doesn't interject.

Malion smiles as he notices Swiftfoot approaching him. "I'm coming Swifty, ya know me," he says, with a nod of his head. "I never turn down a flight... Everything already for flight?" He walks towards the Demarian female, paying no attention to the conversation.

Rillitan sighs, "Everything's so damn private... Lettin' murderers run around like nobody cares." he shakes his head, muttering to himself as he turns away from the cat, "Thanks." he says behind him.

"Unfortunately it's just a little bit better than treating everyone like they're one." Silvereye replies to Rillitan with a slight shrug before looking over at Swiftfoot and Malion. "Where're you two headed off to?"

"La Terre," Swiftfoot replies simply, padding toward the Jackal. "Just a passengerr rrun, meh? Nothin to worry about." She chuckles, and ascends the ship's boarding ramp, disappearing into the airlock.

Malion follows after Swifty, hands still tucked into his pockets. He does exactly the same thing and enters the airlock.


Cockpit <IND Jackal>
...........................................................................

The hatchway opens up to a small metal platform which overlooks a compact command center. Light filters out from hidden coves, evenly illuminating the bridge consoles. A rainbow of telltales and monitors add a touch of color, breathing life into the maze of metal and machinery. A few steps down, the main terminals are arranged in a rough semicircle, following the curvature of the ship's bow. Twin stations centered beneath the main canopy face forward, while another pair face the port and starboard, situated on either side of the cockpit just before two bulky turrets outfitted with the gunnery controls and targeting computers. The whole space is tight-packed, with little room to move when all positions are occupied.

...........................................................................


Swiftfoot snorts and settles herself into the pilot's seat, taking her energy pistol from its makeshift hiding place under one arm, and stowing it in a nearby compartment. "Hrh. Glad I left the tarrget down at the beach. Burried it in the sand forr now. I don't want Silverreye catching me firring weapons in public arreas," she says, her ears flicking. The felinoid fastens the restraints around herself, and looks back over her shoulder. "To answerr yourr question, we'rre rready forr takeoff as soon as you'rre rready."

Malion moves up to the engineering console and sits down. He leans forward and withdraws his pistol, placing it on the terminal. "I'm ready now."

"HEY SWIFTY!" comes Rillitan's voice, from the airlock.

Swiftfoot flinches with her paws inches from the controls, and makes a lightning-quick grab for one of the compartments near the pilot's seat, fumbling with the catch. "Fuck. Why's this sticking now? Just my luck," she mutters, then looks back over her shoulder. "Rrill, stop scarring me. Shit. One of these days I'm actually going to shoot at you, and then you'll end up kicking my ass. Then Airry will kill you in yourr sleep." The felinoid chuckles, and shakes her head. "If you'rre coming with, take a seat, chief."

Malion looks at the console and raises a brow. Rill's voice reaches his ears, and he turns back to look. "Good to have ya along for the ride Rill, just picking up Tia after she stayed behind to have a look around."

Rillitan walks in from outside, casually smirking before shaking his head, "You softass, Swiftfoot." he chuckles, seating himself semi-comfortably at the gunnery controls, "Crap." he says, pushing himself forward while nodding offhandedly to Malion. "Yeah, yeah."

Swiftfoot snorts. "Hrh. At least I know my limits," the felinoid retorts, putting her paws to the controls. The Jackal's engines cycle up as she angles the sleek, black freighter out toward the stars.

Malion leans back, getting himself comfortable. "How much for the trip Swifty?" he asks, with a faint smile.

Rillitan raises an eyebrow, turning to look at Swiftfoot curiously before shaking his head and withdrawing his stun gun, he spins it upside down, clicking the safety into place before reaching into another pocket.

Swiftfoot waits until the ship gives the customary lurch into transition space before waving a paw dismissively. "If you wanna pay forr the fuel, I won't arrgue. I won't charrge you forr the serrvice though, meh?" She looks over her shoulder and grins at the Martian, then shifts her gaze to Rillitan, one eyeridge quirked curiously.

"Sounds fair enough Swifty," Malion replies, looking down to the engineering controls. "Airy reckons I'll be able to do this shit all the time? It took me long enough to learn the system on the Artemis."

Rillitan looks up, catching Swiftfoot’s gaze but ignoring it. He preceeds to wipe down his gun with a yellow rag, making sure the outside is clean as a whistle. A clean whistle.

Swiftfoot turns her eyes away from Rillitan, yawns, and puts her paws behind her head, stretching out as much as possible in the cramped space. "Fuck, I should get this thing overrhauled. Therre's no damn rroom in herre. Damn ship was built forr humans." She snorts, then looks over her shoulder at the Martian again, crossing her paws across her chest. "I figurre, if Airry thinks you can do it, you can. She's eerie like that. She just -knows- sometimes."

Malion continues to look at the console. "The only thing I've ever done is work on a few too many hovercars, and the occasional hovertruck," he states, as he flicks through meaningless commands. "No damn room? S'pose it's pretty hard for a Demarian on a human designed ship."

Rillitan chuckles, "Ain't just Demarian's here, Mal." he mumbles, indicating how scrunched up his legs are. "Ship design ain't smart."

Swiftfoot looks over her shoulder at the Timonae, and nods sympathetically. "Hrh, you shoulda seen me trrying to fit at that station when I was a damn slug," she says, a wry smirk on her muzzle. The felinoid shakes her head, and looks back out at the viewscreen, apparently watching the light bend around the ship.

Malion passes a glance across to Swifty and chuckles. "Couldn't imagine that... How'd ya use the controls?"

The Timonae just shakes his head and goes back to cleaning his pistol, he looks down the muzzle, one eye closing so that he might get a better view. A grin is pulled out of his features and he places it across one knee.

Swiftfoot quirks an eyeridge and shoots a mischevious glance over her shoulder at the Timonae, then puts her paws to the controls. The Jackal responds by rolling off to the left as she exits transition space, starting a crazy, corkscrewing dive toward the surface of La Terre.

Malion passes a glance across over his shoulder to Rill, "Don't look down the blood..." he cut off midsentance when Swifty starts the corkscrew, not being familar with fancy flying scares the hell out of him. "What the fuck?!"

Rillitan doesn't seem to notice the crazy dive just yet, and he wouldn't - the ship wasn't fully caught in orbit yet. He does turn around after a moment of finishing with his weapon, though, upon hearing the sudden shift in engine controls. He raises an eyebrow, "Swiftfoot, could you tell me if we're all going to die." he remains uber-calm, retaining his deadpan expression, "Because I could go out and play with that Railgun. I'd die happy." he nods, something about that sentance just seemed earnest.

Swiftfoot snorts. “Don't worry yourr head none. We’rre not going to die. I’m betterr than that,” she notes primly, her ears flicking. “And forr the rrecorrd, the cabinet’s still locked.” The felinoid guides the ship carefully onto the landing pad, then sits back in the pilot’s seat, putting her paws behind her head again. “I’ll stay herre, you guys rrun and grrab Tiana, okay?”


Malibu Way <La Terre>
...........................................................................

The white sandy beaches seem to stretch on for miles either way. An oldstyled wooden 'boardwalk' connects the various tourist attractions along the beach area. Streaching high into the sky is the new Hot Sands hotel with its many accomidations. Down along the board walk a bit more is the High Rollers Casino and the Bluenose Bar and grill designed to look like old native hut buildings.

...........................................................................



"A kid from Mars who associates with Demarians. That must mean you have no perspective on the plight of humanity." Andrew finally turns to look towards Tiana. "I could give you a short education on the matter if you wish."

Malion walks down the boardwalk walk, hands shoved deep into his trouser pockets. His sunglasses have been removed, and placed down the front of his black tee-shirt. A slight scowl resides upon his visage.

Rillitan follows behind (and over) Malion with a contrasting grin, he keeps looking around and noticing that everyone here is smaller than him - which makes him feel good again, damn good.

"Go for it." Tiana replies. From the corner of her eye she notices Malion and Rill, though doesn't draw attention to that fact, instead turning herself fully to face Andrew.

"You see, aliens threaten humanity in many ways. Some, such as the Centaurans, forced a complete evacuation of Mars a couple years ago, as any child of Mars would know. Others, such as the Nall, have this habit of invasion, but thankfully humanity seems to have ended this threat for now. Then, a mythical felinoid called a Demarian came into existance about five years ago. Of course, the last matter is slightly more complicated, but Mars is an oppressed society, and Demaria is a society that seems to want to be done with oppression." Andrew lectures, his tone calm as he says this.

Malion looks slightly more irate than usual, especialy after he hears the remark from the Sivadian. "Nothing wrong with Demarians ya prat," he says, as he picks up the pace. "Hell, shit happens mate. Yeah, so what if we were pulled off Mars because of a few Jellyfish? Everyone knows about that... Much as I hate 'em, ya gotta get over things. Every bastard 'round knows about the Nall as well, I doubt she needs a history lesson."

Rillitan comes to a halt a few meters away from the two who are talking. He looks at Andrew and nods, "Mister Long." he says, remembering back well. That's all he says, avoiding comment like Malion's.

Tiana grins after hearing Mal's comment, "'Sides, "She replies to Andrew, "There's always gonna be people pissed about one thing or another. Like my brother says, gotta get over things. I like to just take people for who they are, alien or not."

"And there we go, it seems your brother has arrived and you can make your own inquiries." Andrew finally answers. Then he goes to ask Malion, "What was that company headquarters you were looking for again? Your sister wanted to know and I simply could not bring myself to remember." For his part, Andrew seems to have the same distanced tone that he has been having, a flat tone of almost indifference."

Malion stops off to one side, withdraws his hands from his pockets and then rubs his eyes. "Ships on the Launch pad," he says to Tiana. "I'll have a chat with ya mate here. Don't argue, I've got a headache, I'm tired and I wanna have a snooze." The man passes a glance to Long, offering a slightly roguish smile. "HenchCorp mate, think that ya'd be familar. Don't matter anyway, been paid and me works done." He sighs, mostly out of frustration.

Rillitan brings a hand up, taking Tiana by the shoulder and pulling her across, "You wanna come with me little one, we can chat while Mal sorts himself out." Rillitan gives her an old hundred million dollar smile, before guiding her back towards the spaceport.

Tiana can't help but smile, goofily at that, at Rillitan's smile, following him without a smidgen of protest. She blinks, almost sure that she's drooling. She sniffles, cover of course, and brings her arm uprubbing at her nose and mouth, "Ah, sure thing Rill."

"Excellent, I certainly hope I was at least marginally helpful with my recommendations." Andrew says next. "I do rather dislike giving poor directions but sometimes it just has to be done."

Rillitan walks along, taking his hand away from Tiana's shoulder before grinning, "You'll be learning how to shoot, next. What's your preferance?" Rillitan looks across to her, "Energy Pistol? Rifle? Projectile?"

Malion and Long are talking out in the street, while Rillitan leads Tiana back towards the spaceport, having just departed the other pair.

Malion cocks his head slightly to the side, and gives Long a questioning look. "Ain't even gonna ask what ya mean by that." He pays no attention to Tiana and Rillitan as they depart, his interest held in Long for the time being.

Swiftfoot pads out along Blades Boulevard, whiskers bristling. "Hey, I thought maybe you guys got jumped orr something. Figurred I'd come check, meh?" She chuckles, and flicks an ear, then turns back toward the landing pad.

"I uh, get a preference now?" Tia replies, shaking her head a little, "I..I dunno..maybe start with the little stuff and work my way up. Less you think I could manage something bigger to start." She looks up, and we mean up, to Rillitan as she follows along beside him.

"It seems everyone else has left." Andrew answers, "I hope everything has been sufficiently resolved."

Malion rubs his hands together, and grins slightly. "Ya most likely wonder what I was after yesterday, the Battleclaw Silvereye wanted to arrange a meeting, I'm assuming that HenchCorp are ya employers." With that said, he turns and starts to follow after them.

Long shrugs with this, going back to looking towards the ocean now.


Cockpit <IND Jackal>
...........................................................................

The hatchway opens up to a small metal platform which overlooks a compact command center. Light filters out from hidden coves, evenly illuminating the bridge consoles. A rainbow of telltales and monitors add a touch of color, breathing life into the maze of metal and machinery. A few steps down, the main terminals are arranged in a rough semicircle, following the curvature of the ship's bow. Twin stations centered beneath the main canopy face forward, while another pair face the port and starboard, situated on either side of the cockpit just before two bulky turrets outfitted with the gunnery controls and targeting computers. The whole space is tight-packed, with little room to move when all positions are occupied.

...........................................................................



The bridge of the freighter is much as it was left before, weapons on the floor and all. Jackal's irreverent pilot sits with her feet up on the nav console, a Sivadian-model energy pistol in paw, her mouth open in a wide yawn. As the hatch cycles open, she looks back and waves the pistol vaguely at whomever might be there, the barrel pointed carefully upward. "Hey, look, I got the comparrtment open."

Rillitan walks into the cockpit and ducks down, picking up his weapons before frowning, "The what now?" he says, frowning and looking back to Tiana and Malion.

Malion moves over to the engineering console, and raises a brow at Swifty. "What ya on about?" he asks, as he lowers himself into the chair and retrieves his pistol.

Tiana trots in pretty much right on Rillitan's heels. She blinks at the weaponry on the floor, looking briefly to Rill before over to Swifty, "Huh? ... Uh."

Swiftfoot snorts and waves a paw dismissively, securing the weapon again. "Neverrmind. Just sit, meh? Let's have a little fun." The felinoid winks, and turns back to the console, taking her feet off of it and strapping the restraints over herself again.

Rillitan raises an eyebrow, falling down into his seat before grinning up at Tia, "Ain't much room for us big folk, you know. It works both ways."

"Great, I'm getting the feeling that I'll be spewing me ring up," Malion mutters, as he starts to strap himself into the chair. "Just don't get us killed Swifty."

Tiana wanders over to the communications console and sits down, strapping herself in, "Least you big folk have got that intimidation factor going on." She calls back to Rill, "Why do I get the feeling I'm not going to like this flight very much?"

"You have to make that fer yerself, darlin'." Rillitan calls back to Tiana with a grin before turning on the weapons console, doing some preliminary checks on the turrets. The edges of his mouth raise slightly.

"I'm not -that- bad. I got us to La Terre in one piece, didn't I?" Swiftfoot inquires, chuckling. The freighter's engines cycle up suddenly, and the pilot looks over her shoulder briefly. "Surrely nobody would deny me a little fun once in awhile, hmm?" With this, she turns back to the controls, and the ship roars off the landing pad, twisting out through the atmosphere in a series of dips and dives.

"I'll watch Mal and start taking notes then.." Tia calls to Rill as the flight progresses, "He did a damn good job of it yesterday with those men."

Malion runs a quick check over the engineering controls. "It's gonna take me a month of bloody Sundays just to know what half of these symbols are meant to mean." He ignores the compliment coming from Tiana.

Rillitan nod nods, taking in the view for the moment.

As the Jackal comes to the end of a wide, lazy arc, and makes a seamless shift into transition space, her pilot looks back over her shoulder, one eyeridge quirked. "Everryone okay back therre?" She chuckles, and shakes her head then, looking to Malion. "It's easy once you get the hang of it, chief. I know what most of the stuff on the console does, at least, if not why it worrks."

"Yeah, that's reassuring Swifty," Malion replies, with a slightly raised brow. He then grins slyly and asks, "So if something is working, it's bad?"

Swiftfoot snorts, and shakes her head. "I meant that console. I'm no engineerr, but you bet yourr ass I know what the nav contrrols arre all about, or do I need to demonstrrate again?" she inquires, grinning mischeviously at the gunsmith. The Demarian shifts a curious gaze to Rillitan, then. "Hey, why -did- you come along, anyway? I'm still trrying to figurre that out."

The Timonae seems to have dozed off on the spot, either that or he doesn't want to answer Swiftfoot's question.

Malion looks over his shoulder to Swifty, and nods. "Go on then, bet ya wouldn't," he dares. "Gotta get used to ya flying if I get on."

Swiftfoot snorts at the Timonae's silence, and shakes her head. "Take a nap then, Rrill. Be my guest. Hey, I'll go get you a pillow." She turns back to the viewscreen, watching the last bits of the jump field melting away. Immediately, she pulls the nose of the ship up, sending it first -away- from the planet, before dropping it suddenly in a seemingly uncontrolled spiral descent towards the desert world. "Uh oh, I think we'rre in trrouble now, guys..."

Tiana quite suddenly acquires a death-grip on the armrests, her eyes squeezing shut as she bites her tongue to keep from shrieking.

Malion holds onto the strapping that keeps him in place, looking mildly concerned. His knuckles go white, but he won't let himself panic... Too much.

Rillitan murmurs something as they descend, not opening his eyes.

Swiftfoot works the nav controls frantically as the ship continues to descend, plummeting right through what would be a normal orbit, and screaming towards the surface. "Hey, serriously, brrace yourrselves, meh? This one might be a little rrough. I think I've got it aimed generrally at New Alhirra, though," the felinoid says, a note of mild concern in her voice.

"Oh jeez oh jeez oh jeez." Tiana mutters, her grip on the armrest tightening.

Malion closes his eyes after hearing Swifty's comments. He holds onto the harness tighter, waiting for impact. He really starting to feel himself slip into a panic and fights his hardest to keep it under control. A glance to the engineering controls an array of gauges spinning wildly. "This is it," he mutters to himself, awaiting the inevitable.

Rillitan opens one eye, staring out of the screen before grunting lightly, "I always wanted a green one, too." he mumbles, before closing his eye and drifting off agaian

The ship keeps plummeting toward the planet, lights alternating between amber and red on every display. When the ground is all too close for comfort, the Demarian nudges the ship's nose up again. The manuevering jets shriek in protest as she pulls the ship spinning back up into the atmosphere, dispersing the inertia from the freighter's overly fast entry. The Jackal tops out over the clouds again, then turns over and drifts lazily downward, coming to a rest quite safely on the landing pad in New Alhira.

Swiftfoot, for her part, puts one paw to her forehead and laughs almost maniacally as the ship comes to a rest. "Oh man. You guys... You rreally thought I was gonna crash it..."

Malion grumbles about something, and starts to unsecure his harness. He's looking a bit worse for wear, and makes his way towards the corridor.

Rillitan mumbles something in his sleep, reaching out jaggedly before turning off the console level with his face, he mumbles again, then turns over to find there's no chair left, his hands catch him and he pushes himself up, messing his hair up a little as he follows Malion. He looks a little dazed, just got out of bed.

"Oh je.." Tiana cuts herself off as they land safely, poking herself a few times before unstrapping herself and standing, "You… are mean." She remarks to Swifty before taking the same course as Malion and Rillitan.

"Oh, come on, it wasn't -that- bad," the felinoid says, then realizes she's talking to herself. "Ah well. Not my fault they can't take a joke, meh?" She chortles softly, and heads aft to take a nap.

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