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Compelled from afar

Feb 18, 2020 Bobsin link
It started with some simple trading. Easy tasks to get back into the swing of things. 15 years had passed since the amnesias set in, the doctors kept telling me stories from my past, but none of it felt familiar. And so after more than a decade of avoiding it, I finally took the doctor's advice and climbed into the cockpit of an old Wraith.

I am told that I used to own this rust bucket and that running some small errands might be enough to jog my memory. It has been a month so far, and it feels like no amount of mining, trading, or basic flight skills is going to jog anything! I was beginning to give up on this plan and completely write off whatever past the Doctors said I had. This simply wasn't me, I am not a trader and doubt I every was! And it is about damn time I give up on trying to recall a past that is so elusive. Perhaps it is better this way.

I was drifting near a station in the heart of Serco territory, just watching the asteroids drift by and listening to comm chatter when I felt the first twinge. The long range comms picked up a shouting match between a trader and a inexperienced pilot. It sounded like the trader bumped or damaged the young pilots ship, and he was demanding retribution. The young pilot shouted "Come to Odia M-14! I'll kick your ass!! I've got friends here! We will show you what we do to your kind!"

Odia.. Friends.. Grey space... I felt a tugging in my gut. So I set course to Odia M-14 to see what mystery was pulling at me. The unfamiliar sights of Serco stations and worm holes gradually gave way to the familiar lawless lands of grey space. It was like piloting through a reoccurring dream. Every new sight I saw was like discovering my favorite bars and gorgeous scenery. Though I had never been there in this new life, I knew exactly who to speak to at a port to find my way around the commodity exchanges and equipment purchases. I was on auto pilot, making my way through Grey space as if I had done it a million times.. but no new memories surfaced.

Not until I stepped foot onto a station in Sedina D-14 anyway. The moment I landed my Wraith, I knew exactly where I wanted to go. There was a hidden landing pad not far from the main commerce area. I came to a locked door with a hand scanner and stopped for a moment. This place was mine. This was my home..

I placed my hand on the scanner and heard a rusty lock cycle open, clearly no one has been here in a long time. I pushed the door open and entered the main hangar. Under a decades worth of dust were photos of familiar faces. Some photos showed a close knit group drinking to celebrate something, and I was there in the middle with a glass held high! I took this photo off the wall and made my way to the center of the launch pad.

There was a ship covered under a tarp parked here and it had the unmistakeable profile of a Corvus Vulturius. Without removing the tarp I knew what color it was... Purple. My favorite color, and a tribute those comrades who fell in the countless battles we fought.

I pulled the tarp off and got into the cockpit without thinking.. still on auto pilot. I placed the photo I took off the wall next to the seat and started launch procedures.

Before long I was bound for Odia M-14, where the loud mouth trash talking inexperienced pilot was still badgering the trader via comms. When I entered the system I found him and opened fire without warning.. all instinct.

The fight didn't last long, and I found myself unsatisfied. The brief thrill of opening fire stirred something in me.. a glimpse of something that I needed to know. However, it ended too quickly to fully jog y memories.

As I drifted there among the debris, a fellow Serco pulled up near me in a Corvus Vulturius. The memory stirred again. We positioned ourselves at a short distance from one another and began to face off.. Every skillful strafe one pilot made was diligently countered by the opposition. Neutron blasts whizzed past each cockpit, both planes taking slight damage as the deadly dance carried on. We were both jockeying for a kill shot when the inexperienced pilot reemerged with a new ship.. I guess his emergency eject pod saved him..

Yet here he was, taking aim at 2 competent fighters in the midst of a duel. We both stopped our fight and quickly sent his new ship to the junkyard before turning our blasters one one another again. Our battle raged on as the adrenaline coursed through my veins.. a name came forward and I whispered it out loud.

Sebastian... I am Sebastian, Member of the Black Lance Guild [BLAK]. Grey Space is my home and I will once again become the Arbiter of all who cross into my home!

In the midst of battle, I have been reforged!
Feb 18, 2020 xDraenoRx link
Welcome back Sebastian, hoping to blow your ship out of the sky soon.
Feb 19, 2020 Bobsin link
I've been on mostly after midnight, eastern time. When should I look out for you xDraenorx?
Feb 19, 2020 xDraenoRx link
I don't have a schedule, but midnight sounds good. When i see you I will let you know.
Feb 25, 2020 Bobsin link
It is quiet. There is a lone hum of the life support systems toiling away as I drift towards my home station in my life pod. The past weeks have been laced with victories and defeats as I have been trying to sharpen my dulled reflexes back to their former glory.

After each defeat, I am left drifting with only my thoughts keeping me company. I have taken to keeping a bottle of authentic tequila in my life pod to help pass the time. There is still much that I do not remember from my old life. There are a few references to a "BLAK Virus" wreaking havoc on anyone related to the BLAK Guild.. but I can not remember if it was a biological virus, a computer virus, or both. After spending too much time thinking about it in the silence, I become agitated and get stuck in a cycle of confusion over the few things I do remember, anger at myself for not protecting the few people I loved, hatred to whoever ripped that life away from me, and loneliness as I pine over everything I had that I can barely remember.

Whenever I hit the height of the vicious self-loathing cycle, I pour a shot of my tequila. The aroma fills the air of the cramped space as I swirl the drink in my hand. As I inhale the scent of the tequila, all the negative emotions quiet down and are replaced by shadowy memories from my past. I stare at the photo of my guild mates that I took off the wall of my launch pad back in Sedina D-14. With each sip those faint memories become a little clearer. We celebrated after each victory over the Vipers and Itani Alliance, partying every bit as hard as we fought. Some parties lasted days!

This was my favorite part of the return trips. The part where I am just buzzed enough to start humming a familiar tune as I try to force the lyrics into manifesting in my mind so I could sing it. Just me, the whirling of life support, my humming, and the resurrected ghosts of my fallen allies keeping me company as I drift back to a station.

I pour another drink and inhale the intoxicating aroma again before raising the glass in salute to my fallen allies. The ghosts cheer with me as I take another swig..

They have to be out there somewhere...
Feb 25, 2020 xDraenoRx link
This is making me feel some type of way...
Feb 25, 2020 Bobsin link
If I am being honest, there are a handful of people I wish I could get ahold of to flesh out this story. I am pulling elements from an old thread that was created when the original BLAK guild fell off the face of the planet for a month-ish. :)
Feb 25, 2020 xDraenoRx link
If only your old gang were here.
Feb 26, 2020 Bobsin link
As well as some of my old enemies. 😏
Feb 27, 2020 Bobsin link
The sun was shinning through my window shades, beckoning me to wake up. I blinked with discomfort building behind my eyes as I begrudgingly joined the world of the living. I may have hit the tequila a little too hard last night after that last fight. But it was only a small hangover.. nothing to really worry about.

I laid still in my bunk and let my senses come back to me and replayed what I remembered from the night before. There were multiple fights between me and members of the other nations. While I now know that I was and am a pirate at heart, my Serco Heritage pulls at me at times of crisis. In this case, Itan sent their Capital Ships to our borders and attempted to blockade the trade lanes entering Serco territory.

As a pirate, I could care less. However, the Serco government has been the ones taking care of me and footing my bills throughout my 15 year recovery. My personal sense of honor bound me to helping disrupt the Itani blockade. Besides, I was in a funk and wanted to try to unlock more of my history through combat. So I saddled up and made my way to Initros.

It was there, on that battlefield that I crossed paths with Draenor.. a skilled Itani pilot with unclear allegiances. At first I took him as an Itani to the core rank and file pilot, overzealous in his cause. But after many spars during this war and comm chatter that I picked up with my pirate scanner, I came to view him to be similar to myself. Someone that follows His personal code, but is sometimes thrust into political confrontations.

As we sparred throughout the encounter, trash talking slowly turned into honest compliments on piloting technique and playful insults at each other’s choices in ships. The campaign against Serco trade routes faded into the background after the first Capital Ship fell.

“EYES UP Sebastian!” Commander Sonora shouted through the comms.
“You going soft on that Itani Scum?” She was starting to notice that we were no longer enemies fighting to the death, but more like comrades pushing each other to surpass their limits.

As the conflict came to an end, Draenor and I took to fighting our last battle of this encounter. With rockets and blasters whizzing past one another I told him about the 15 years I couldn’t remember and how fighting seemed to be the only thing connecting me to a past I was trying to remember. I don’t know why I told him.. a complete stranger and enemy by all rights. But he felt trustworthy.

Just then a rocket exploded near my ship and left me dead in the water. I closed my eyes and prepared for my fate. There is always a chance that when the ship explodes, the life pod will malfunction. Safety, while very common, is not guaranteed.

“Well, I guess this is it Drae. Go ahead.. finish it.” I say through comms.

“I have a question about your story Sebastian. You say that you have been in recovery for the last 15 years.. but only recently started flying?”

“Yes.. what of it?” I reply

“Don’t you think it is a little odd that it took 15 years to get to this point? Shouldn’t your cranial cybernetic implants have mitigated the damage from whatever caused your amnesia?” He asked.

I felt my suspicions rise a little at his question. He is right. Serco Augmentations should have limited the damage and had me back in action after a major traumatic injury in a year.. maybe two. 15 years for this type of injury is a little odd.

“What the hell actually happened to me… “I said out loud as I pondered his words.

“I don’t know stranger.. but good luck figuring it out. Goodbye for now.” He said as I watched a final rocket launch from his payload and fly toward my ship.

“Goodbye for now…” I replied. A moment later my ship was nothing but another debris cloud and my life pod was launching itself toward my home base. Looks like I will live to fight another fight.

I popped open the cork on a new bottle of tequila and pondered the night’s revelations. As I sipped on my drink I looked at the bottle and read the side of it.

“Property of LeberMac”

All of the bottles of tequila in my stash are stamped with that label. Half of them have “LeberMac” crossed out and “Borb" written in underneath it… a third of those had “Borb” crossed out and “TumbleMonster” written in with crayon.

I smiled at the playful shenanigans of my old mates before beginning my ritual of drinking, humming, and prying at my lost memories.

And now that I lay in bed, joining the world of the living begrudgingly, my head has 2 things going on..

A splitting migrane (maybe the hangover isn’t so small)
And a deep seated urge to know everything about the BLAK Virus..
Feb 27, 2020 Bobsin link
***Some source material is coming from this thread***
Feb 27, 2020 xDraenoRx link
Im hooked to this story! Thanks for mentioning me here :D
Feb 27, 2020 Luxen link
Drae also has a heavy piracy background, so the honest pews fit him quite easily :P
Mar 19, 2020 Bobsin link
Edward Hyde sat back at his small desk and sipped his coffee. It was nice to have some quiet time between assignments. His last one wasn’t too challenging, but did require extreme patience.. a virtue he sometimes has trouble with. It was a shit job, just the kinda thing his boss loved shoving upon him.

His office has been steadily downgraded over the past 5 years. See there was a disagreement between him and a superior officer long ago over how to handle a certain high profile case. The disagreement turned into a pissing match between him and his boss. Unfortunately it seemed that if you are full of enough shit, then you also have an abundance of piss. Edward lost, his boss was promoted, and Edward’s career has been steadily in decline ever since.

Edward sipped his coffee again and closed his eyes for a moment while he mulled over what could have been had he not had that disagreement. A better office? More exciting cases? Happily married and retired while cruising the universe in a luxury ship he and his non-existent wife owned?

*DING! His terminal lit up with a new message from an old acquaintance, interrupting his old hobby of imagining a better life. Edward opened an eye and looked at his terminal.

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Incoming Message: Draenor.
Subject: Long Time..

Been a while Hyde. I have some information you might want to know.

Subject Black SeaBass SD-14 is active. Combat skill is Fair, maybe 65% lethal, and improving. Subject is starting to question his history and slowly discovering bits and pieces about it.

How would you like to proceed?

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“Fuck” Edward cursed under his breath. This was a piece of history he was hoping wouldn’t return in his lifetime. He mulled over his options as he drank from his mug. The current administration will want to terminate the subject and sweep the whole incident under the rug. Edward wished he could agree with that approach. It would be so much easier, but would waste over a decade of planning and preparing for SeaBass’s return that was laid out by the old administration. Their original goals for this project were still relevant, even critical to the success of humanity’s survival. No, the current administration should not know about this until the wheels are moving and they have no choice but to see this through.

Edward realized that he couldn’t operate on this case while at his current job. He needed to be free from their bureaucracy to do what needed to be done. He knew just how he wanted to make his exit from this shitty job.

Edward gulped the remaining coffee, backed up all of the relevant files to his personal data cube, grabbed his 20th Anniversary Trophy the company gave him at last year’s retreat and headed to his Boss’s Office.

He walked right into the office, went straight to his boss and bashed him in the head with the trophy.. knocking him out cold.

Edward smiled and exited the building.

As he rode in the back of the taxi on his way to the spaceport he typed out a short message.

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Outgoing Message to: Draenor
Subject: RE: Long Time..

Observe and report back any changes directly to me. I’ll Contact you when I get to Grey Space.

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Mar 20, 2020 xDraenoRx link
Ahhh yes I have been waiting!