THE SPACE NAVY AU (18+)

Discussion in 'Boat Trolls RP' started by Belatu Kadros, Sep 7, 2015.

  1. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    It could be worse, you remind yourself yet again as the shuttle begins decelerating for the approach to your new posting. It could be a lot worse.

    The court-martial had absolved you of any wrongdoing. Your direct and deliberate disobedience of a lawful order was rendered excusable under some obscure subclause that could be bent to fit, because the court was well aware your CO's order had been blatantly stupid. They understood that you had gone on to win the battle despite your CO rather than because of him, and his convenient death due to an overlooked enemy sniper was just the fortunes of war and not your fault at all. Rather than punishing you, they promoted you two ranks -- into a different service. Your days of leading ground troops are over; it's the recycled air of a starship for you henceforth.

    And then they assigned you to the Captain-Killer.

    Because a high-profile young upstart like you couldn't be allowed to really benefit from disobedience. Not with your record of suspiciously egalitarian views, not with your habit of turning in buckets with lowblood friends at drone time rather than forming lifelong alliance quadrants with other highbloods. Others might imitate you!

    You understand it. You expected it. It's a neat bit of political tidying, and it leaves you comfortable for life if you can survive the Sunslammer's cursed Helmsman, mad captain, and slapdash crew. It's a carrier, it doesn't participate in battles, it just brings hardware to their vicinity. Maybe as little as a sweep ago, you would've been full of determination to shape the place up and earn back the Empire's respect, but you're a jaded thirteen now and you understand that that would only make things worse. If a dead-end posting stops being a dead-end, the embarrassments stowed there might have to be rendered simply dead.

    But you're damned if you're going to let the sloppy attitude you've heard about infect you. You are a Planetary Marine, damn them all, and even in a dead-end posting your buttons will shine.

    You check in the darkened shuttle window once again to make sure your buttons are shining. They are, of course. Your uniform is perfectly pressed and spotless, and fits your broad-shouldered blueblood frame in ways that make trolls swoon if they're the swooning type. Your horns shine, your hair shines, your boots shine. Only your future looks dull.

    And, you note as it rolls into view, badly in need of a paint job.

    Stone-faced, you note every instance of neglected maintenance as you go through the formal procedure of being bunged aboard, and then you go to present yourself to your captain. Who outranks you, you have to remember, even though your rank was Captain before you were promoted, because ground troops' ranks are different, and your new rank of Commander is equivalent to Major in your old service. It's a headache.

    When you tried to research Captain Aspera, you could only find out a few pertinent things: 1) he's batshit crazy; 2) he's easygoing; 3) he has somehow survived the Captain-Killer for three sweeps. You resolve not to underestimate him.
     
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  2. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    You're up to your elbows in reclaimed biological material when the head of hydroponics kicks your ankle and lets you know the new hand's come aboard.

    "Oh hell, was that today," you ask, dismayed, and receive confirmation that yep, and he's outside the greenblock right now, stiff as a snake with a stick luncheon.

    You very nearly forget yourself and pull on your horns— Eli grabs the hem of your glove just before you wipe lusus shit through your hair.

    "Thanks, thanks," you mutter, distracted, and strip off quick as you can. A quick, harsh scrub with the high-power watering hose and a block of lye soap gets you somewhat less mucky and you're hopping into a pair of decent shorts as you head for the airlock.

    You're still struggling into a tshirt when the airlock cycles open and you're brought face-to-face— face-to-chest— with the newbie.

    "I say," you say, looking up at him. Blue? Blue. You scrunch your nose. "I asked for someone who could do something with the plumbing," you say, disappointed. "Who're you?"

    (erskin is a lot more weedy than his ID pictures would indicate, he's hit an awkward gangly stage. he's also got an eyepatch, an eyetooth missing, a fresh livid scar under and around the eyepatch, cracked horns, badly scraped knuckles, scruffy default clothes, a very basic prosthetic, and smells like sweat and mulch under the soap)
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2015
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  3. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    You are pretty sure nobody but a space marine could keep their eyes forward and their face expressionless when presented with an absurdly sexy seadweller in a wet t-shirt and short-shorts. Fortunately, once a space marine, always a space marine. You salute.

    "Commander Belatu Kadros, sir! Formerly of the 106th Colonial Invasion Commandobliterators, now your new First Mate, sir!"
     
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  4. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    Damn. Bluebloods are all robots and doomsday devices, they don't know from plumbing. You regard him with profound disappointment.

    "Well, we'll just have to figure out what to do with you," you decide. "Commander, what? I suppose I shouldn't bung you off on Lainey for the tour. Do you want a tour, Kadros? You probably need a tour. The ship's wiki is all memes and misdirection lately."
     
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  5. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    "That won't be necessary, sir." The tour is probably full of pranks. You'll familiarize myself with the ship when you're off duty. That 'figure out what to do with you' remark is ominous, though. "Sir, I was assigned here as first mate; has there been a misunderstanding?"

    If there isn't even a job for you to do, your poker face might just crack.
     
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  6. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    "Yes, probably, Lainey's my first mate. Hold on."

    You dig your phone out and contact Lainey.

    "Lainey, old sport, aren't you my first mate?"

    "What? No!"

    "You aren't?"

    "No! Haha, god, why did you think that?"

    "You said I needed a first mate and I said sure! I thought you wanted the job!"

    "Wow, no, no way. I've seen your office. I put in the paperwork for a first mate. Who sure as hell isn't going to be me, oh my god, I've seen your office, no thanks."

    "Oh." You tug on one of your horns, glance up at Kadros, frown at the wall. "Lainey, what does a first mate— hang on." You put the phone against your chest to the sound of muffled hysterics. "Kadros, what does a first mate do? If you're there to sort of follow me about and be all stiff and tell me not to do whatever it is I bloody well want to, like that Spocke chap, I won't have it."
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2015
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  7. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    You raise a single eyebrow exactly like that Spocke chap. You just can't help it. "No, sir," you say levelly.
     
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  8. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    You stare in abject horror for a long moment before bursting into laughter.

    "Oh, spot on! You really had me going there, you big blue devil." You pop him one gently in the arm, still grinning. "You'll get along fine here, I'm sure, come on, unstarch, and let's have that tour. And then lunch. I haven't eaten yet tonight. When you're mulching you don't particularly want to, what?"
     
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  9. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    Easygoing, and a bit mad. Well, you were warned. You relax just a little, clasp your hands behind your back, nod agreement. The captain really wants to give you the tour, so you guess you're getting a tour. "You... participate in the farm work, sir?" you venture.

    (ok and now i'm really going to bed for reals, game to play tomorrow some!)
     
    • Like x 7
  10. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    "You know how it is, no one likes the scutwork, and anyway we're always too bloody understaffed to cull anyone. Not that I particularly care for more hands running about— er, no offense. And anyway, I say, there's no shame in a good night's work, whatever it is. Even if it's the bloody fucking plumbing."

    You lead him along to the nearest transport block, pull out a bike— look him up and down— pull out a proper cart. Usher him in and drive it off along one of the dedicated wheel-device corridors.

    "It's all down to nitrates, as I understand it," you say. "I've been working to get this heap self-sufficient so that means plants to scrub the air, soil to feed the plants, lusii to produce the soil, trolls to bring the lusii on board, air for the trolls to breath, it's all the great circle of life plus tomatoes. What's your custodian, Kadros?"

    (the ship is a two-mile by one-mile brick, the maps of it have been hacked into uselessness, and the different departments like to steal one another's signs. bel needs a tour.)
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2015
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  11. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    "My Binesi is a thunderbird, sir." Since Ascension, you've learned not to call him Eagledad, but to refer to him by his previously seldom-used name, because you weren't the only marine with a soarbeast lusus and it got confusing. "I had him taken to the carrier deck so he can fly around a bit, I hope that's all right. He hasn't had a chance to stretch his wings since our last ground battle."

    As the cart trundles along, you get out your tablet and start taking notes. You downloaded a blueprint of the original layout when you were first assigned here, but you can see some changes have been made. You do not approve, in principle, because unauthorized alterations can compromise the structural strength of the ship and interfere with security protocols and yadda yadda. Captain Aspera's goal of oxygen self-sufficiency is an interesting one, though, and you decide to reserve judgement.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2015
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  12. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    You glance at his map and laugh, reflexively— the chap goes all stiff again and you wave a hand at him apologetically.

    "Sorry, old bean, didn't mean to offend. It's just, er, that's the map of the ASS Go Fuck Yourself. See, the aft exhaust-port support structures spell out 'nook'? Like I said, the ship's wiki is all memes lately, I'd restrict access to teal-and-higher but they're some of the worst offenders."
     
    • Like x 3
  13. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    Scowling, you flip back and forth a few times between the bluprint you got from the Admiralty website and the one on the ship's wiki. Now that he's pointed out the tampering, you're spotting more hilarious 'jokes' everywhere you look.

    "But what if someone needs to repair those structures, sir? What if we need to, to repel boarders or -- and the map is inaccurate? Sir, why do you allow this?" You're more baffled than indignant. This isn't how the Fleet works.
     
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  14. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    "Allow?" you blink at him. "Good lord, Kadros, it's all I can do to keep this heap in food and air, everything extra we've got goes towards fleet repair. I don't have time to go chasing about everyone who wants to blow off a bit of steam 'round here, and if I laid on the rod or ninetails or whatever like some of the great violet jackasses out there enjoy we'd fall even further behind. Plus my arm would fall off."

    You shrug. "Sorry, old thing, you'll have to get used to a different set of supply logistics. I don't know about you ground-pounders but on the Sunslammer we're all kept on a very short leash."

    (he doesn't say this bitterly, but as if these were basic and obvious facts that bel is being dense about)
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2015
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  15. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    You consider that for a minute or two. After some thought, you decide to embrace the lax atmosphere enough to volunteer a suggestion: "I'm aware that I've been here less than an hour, sir, and am thus the very definition of an ignorant newcomer, so I hope I don't come across as some Hardass From HQ marching in to try and shape the place up. But there is harmless fun, and then there is function-compromising slackness. As First Mate, it will fall to me to make the distinction clear to the crew. Perhaps... perhaps they could be distracted with games or competitions so as not to kick at being forbidden to vandalize necessary information resources?"
     
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  16. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    "Oh, is that the sort of thing a First Mate's for? Wonderful, yes, by all means give that a try."

    You chew your lip, look at him sidelong. Big as a bhemoth and probably has the alternian anthem tattooed across his bulge— "If I find out you've been thrashing anyone, mind you, you'll go right out the airlock. Understaffed or not, we don't tolerate that sort of thing here."
     
    • Like x 4
  17. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    You almost smile. "Understood, sir. I myself have found that violent punishments create resentment rather than obedience. Extra work and suspension of recreational privileges has proven far more effective. For instance, in my battalion there was a squad that was famous for drinking to excess on shore leave. While this is not in itself against regulations, they would habitually present themselves for duty afterwards in a state of unreadiness. I instructed their sergeant that on these occasions they should be given the most odorous tasks on base, such as changing the fryer oil in the mess truck, washing bedpans in the medical tent, and so forth. There were a few apparently amusing incidents of projectile vomiting, but their behavior afterwards improved markedly."

    You glance at him curiously to see whether telling funny stories is the way to fit in, as you suspect, or whether you've overstepped bounds.
     
    • Like x 3
  18. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    "Ha! Hope they aimed for the bedpans and not the fryer oil," you grin. "Oh, right— we're coming up on the machinery blocks, I thought we should start at the aft and work forward. Here, give me that."

    You park the cart, take his tablet, open up a fresh notepad program, and sketch quickly with your foreclaw. "Here's a decent map for you. Engine- and helms-block furthermost aft, then machinery and fabrication, the honeycomb of docking bays, then recreational areas are all mixed with the lusii allotments, we've mostly worked out who goes where with that, and the livingspaces are mixed in with the farms and gardens. If you can't garden you're going to learn. Oh, and I suppose here's the bridge, I mostly only go and sit in the big chair when I've got to shout at someone. Visiting captains do like to stand on ceremony."

    You give the tablet back to Kadros and hop out of the cart. Your phone buzzes.

    "What? No. Again? Well make a salad or something and get a better lock— no. Alright. Tell Gloria hi for me and fuck off."

    You hang up.

    "Are you any good at mechanical repairs?" you ask. "Biomechanics at a preference. You wouldn't believe the state of some of the helmsblocks we see coming through here."
     
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  19. Belatu Kadros

    Belatu Kadros crossfireHurricane

    "I'm... adequate to keep ground invasion hardware running," you admit. "I don't know anything about helm wetware. Sorry, sir. I guess I'll learn. My moirail used to do forestry, planetside, but gardening is a closed book to me. Aquaponics, now..." You pause hopefully. If they have a fish farm aboard your lusus will be one happy birdie.
     
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  20. Erskin Aspera

    Erskin Aspera flintlockGallivant

    You have to think for a minute. Aqua? Aquaponics. You mouth the word thoughtfully. "We've got a few ponds here and there for landdweller swimming and marsh plants, but they fall under the purview of the greenthumbs, I think. I cultivate a sort of tidepool biome in my recreational allotment, there's enough room for a good paddle, anyone's welcome but it's mostly just me and visiting captains who use it. It's rough on the gills, you know, just making do with bathtubs and whatnot."
     
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