Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Reformation: Chapter Seven

Notes: Holy crap, I've had so much to do! Lots of projects in the works, lots of things to catch up on from my time away, but voila! New Reformation. Enjoy your Cody/Ten time :)

Title: Reformation: Chapter Seven

***

Chapter Seven



It was lucky that for Cody that Jack was in the system, actually, much less on the planet right now. Jack Vendam did a lot of the negotiating for his adopted family of drifters, a group headed up by Jonah’s mother, Karleen. Jonah and his mother had stopped talking years ago, before Cody had been old enough to remember what they’d fought about in the first place. Not that he didn’t know. It had been him, of course. It was always him. He tore people apart. Hopefully he was old enough this time to be of use, and to get her to look the other way.

As he walked back toward his tower, Cody sent a message to Jack with his implant. Have time to talk? Short and sweet was always easier on his head.

Heading out in a few hours, came the reply. You hear about Pandora?

Oh good, he was already aware. Cody knew that his biological fathers had a tenuous relationship these days, based mostly on getting black market supplies to the colony. Jonah sent a lot of business Jack’s way, and in return Pandora got much-needed equipment without the tariffs and taxes that came from official Federation shipments. The Box wasn’t a wealthy colony, never had been, more concerned with the health of its population than with mining or production. Still, it was one of the only places that would do regular business with the Helms Drifters, and that made it important to them. Hopefully important enough.

I heard, Cody sent back. Going that way?

Close enough to assess things. We’ve got a lot invested in our cargo. No place for it but there.

Is there room for a passenger?

There was a long pause, and Cody found himself stopping in place, unable to walk when he couldn’t even force himself to breathe. If Jack couldn’t help him…if he was still here when Garrett’s escort arrived…

You serious?

Completely.

Your dad know about this?

Jonah’s the reason I have to get there.

What about the other one? Jack never used Garrett’s name if he could help it.

Doesn’t agree, doesn’t need to. Cody forced down the swell of guilt that threatened to choke him. He won’t know. Promise.

Actually, the idea of getting one over on Garrett probably really appealed to Jack. He’d been sore ever since Garrett had broken his elbow during a custody dispute when Cody was a kid, then gotten out of serving time for it for medical reasons. Cody could barely remember how Garrett had been when he was off his meds, but he had a vague impression of fury and fierce protectiveness, coupled with an underlying confusion. It had been a rough time for Garrett.

Cody bit his lip. He needed to stop thinking about his stepfather, or the simmering guilt would boil over and change his mind, and he couldn’t afford that right now.

We can meet. No guarantees, bucko.

Cody exhaled heavily. When? The sooner the better, as far as he was concerned.

One hour, Durham district, Rascal’s Bar. Bring everything you’ll need. The subtext there screamed: everything a natural might need. Jack might want to have a relationship with Cody these days, but he’d never gotten over the fact that his son, his and Jonah’s only child, had been born with a disability. Cody had tried for years to disabuse him of the notion that being a natural meant he needed to be coddled and given special privileges, but it hadn’t sunk in with Jack yet.

This would be good for them. A chance for Cody to show his father what he could do. He wasn’t a kid anymore: he was an excellent pilot, a decent mechanic and an innovative engineer. He could take care of himself.

I’ll be there. The connection died, and Cody shook his head as the imprint of the last message slowly faded out of his vision. Once he could move without seeing things that weren’t there, he picked up the pace getting back to his room. He had to pack. He had to…fuck, he needed to leave a message for Ten. Who was going to kill him.

No, if anyone would understand what Cody needed to do, it was Ten. Ten would forgive him. After a long and painful period of groveling, at least.

Apollo Tower was deserted at this time of the morning, every cadet attending class. Cody slinked into his room, wanting to get out of sight of Hermes’ surveillance as soon as possible. The sooner he got off campus, the better. He opened the door to his room, then almost jumped out of his skin as he came nose to nose with Ten.

“Shit!”

“What happened?” Ten demanded, not wasting any time on pleasantries, as usual.

“What…how did you—”

“Oh, please.” Ze rolled hir eyes. “It’s like you don’t know me at all. I have an app in my implant that connects directly to Hermes and lets me know when you make abnormal movements that don’t correspond to your schedule, and another one that alerts me to a lexicon of unusual words that correlate to your personal history when they come up in the news. There were only a few mentions of Pandora before things were stifled, but it was enough to catch my attention. That plus you being called into Liang’s office? And then not contacting me?” Ten folded hir arms and glared. “What the hell, Cody?”

“You are seriously invasive sometimes,” Cody said sourly. How was he going to get away now?

“And you’re seriously na├»ve if you’re only realizing that today. I want to know everything about you. All of the time.” There was an edge of helplessness to Ten’s voice, like ze didn’t know why ze wanted to know everything, like being in love still mystified hir. Cody was charmed despite himself. “I want to be with you, I want to do things with you, and I don’t want you doing things without me. Especially not crazy, stupid things.”

“What makes you think I’m going to do something crazy?” Cody prevaricated.

“If you weren’t, you’d have told me about it already.” Fair enough, Cody supposed. “So? What’s happening? What’s wrong?”

Cody opened his mouth to lie, to tell Ten just enough truth that ze thought he was leaving with Garrett’s babysitters. He stopped, closed it, and reassessed. Cody was shit at lying, not because he couldn’t do it in the heat of the moment but because, inevitably, he felt so much guilt for it that he punished himself until he came clean. It was a childish impulse that he desperately wanted to get rid of, but couldn’t ever seem to.

Ten, on the other hand, had never had a problem with lying. Ten was such a master of the art of bullshitting that sometimes not even Cody could wade through all the half-truths and misinformation to get to the heart of a matter. If—when—Jack took him up to the Helms satellite, Cody knew that he still wouldn’t be among allies. His grandmother disliked him, and he didn’t know anyone else up there. Surely it would be better not to have to rely solely on Jack? Plus, he’d miss Ten worse than anything.

“Okay,” he said at last. “But you have to promise not to send off any messages or try to talk me out of it. Because it won’t work.”

Ten tilted hir head. “When have I ever tried to talk you out of anything?”

Good point.

Explaining to Ten didn’t take long, maybe five minutes total. The only time hir intent expression faltered was when Cody glossed over his fight with Garrett.

“He’s going to go crazy with worry,” Ten predicted.

“He’ll have to get over it,” Cody said firmly. “I’m not leaving my dad like that.”

“You realize the Drifter satellite might not get close enough for us to affect any kind of landing, especially not if it’s an active warzone.”

“I’ll jump that wall when I get to it.”

“Of course you will.” Ten thought in silence for another moment, then burst into a whirl of activity. “All right, let me put these cell lines in stasis and make sure the safety systems are up and running. Grab a few changes of clothes for me too. It’s dirty on Drifter ships; there usually aren’t any automatic cleaners apart from the scrubbers for the atmosphere.”

Cody could have melted with relief. “You’ll come with me then?”

“You would have had to have knocked me out, tied me up and thrown me in your retractable closet to stop me. And even then, I’d have chartered a private ship and found you before you could even get out of the Central System.” Ten’s bright eyes met Cody’s. “I’m always coming with you. Get used to it. And I’ll bring my toolkit.”

Ten’s toolkit was a marvel of engineering, a box a meter long and twenty centimeters high, packed with an array of devices for use in every one of Ten’s fields of interest, which were…almost everything. “Good idea,” Cody said. “I’ve got some credits on hand to help pay for our passage, but I don’t know if they’ll be enough to get us to Pandora.”

Ten waved a hand. “Who said anything about credits? We’re going to trade our way to your dad, and they’re going to be grateful to get what we’re offering.”

“Which is what?”

“Whatever we can fabricate that they need. Which is almost everything. Oh, and we should bring your bike.”

Cody’s new bike, based on a diagram that Wyl had left with him a while back, was a marvel of engineering. It had a propulsion system that rivaled a shuttle, an antigrav unit that would hold up ten bikes like it, and even an environmental seal that could be utilized without draining the battery for up to two days. It was massively overbuilt, and a present from his dads for his last birthday. Cody resolutely pushed its origin out of his mind. “Good idea.”


“Most of them are.”

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Reformation: Ch. 6, and also, hey, I'm back!

Notes: I didn't know that I'd get the chance to write the next chapter in time, but apparently endless hours in a plane are good for something after all! Cambodia was amazing, I'll post about it soon, but in the meantime, have some Miles and Garrett to start your day off right.

Title: Reformation: Chapter 6

***


Chapter Six



Miles had forgotten the last time he’d worn his full dress uniform. He hadn’t been active duty with the marines for, oh, nearly a decade now. What used to feel like a second skin to him now seemed awkward, the medals clinking too loudly against his chest, the epaulets too gaudy, the collar far too tight. He’d have packed the thing away years ago if it weren’t for the fact that Claudia liked him to wear it occasionally, but he’d never kept it on for more than half an hour.

What was enjoyable to do for his wife felt almost too heavy to bear now, but Miles straightened his tie and pulled the corners of his hat crisp before stepping out of the shuttle and marching toward Federation Central Command. His personal staff fell in around him like bodyguards, the command escort that had been sent to meet him pushed back to the edge of his entourage.

“It’s a full tribunal meeting,” his secretary, Shen Lin, murmured as they walked along. “Very formal. My sources tell me it could go either way in there.” As in, either you could be thrown into command or thrown into the brig.

Miles nodded briskly. “Who’s sitting on the tribunal?”

“General Sokha, Admiral Davenport and Admiral Rupallier.”

It could have been worse. Miles had served with both Sokha and Davenport. Sokha, in fact, had only come into command of the Federation Marine Corps because Miles had turned the job down in order to take the position as Paradise’s interim governor. Unfortunately, Sokha knew that, and had never been fond of Miles because of it. Davenport was different; they had been equals when they’d served together, young men just starting out in their careers. Davenport, at least, had no reason to dislike him. Miles might be able to get some answers out of him.

Command Central was half-office space, half-museum. It seemed like every hallway was littered with monuments to different battles fought or leaders revered. It was considered a high honor to have your face immortalized on the walls of the Federation’s military hivemind. Another honor Miles had rejected; once upon a time he would have died to secure his place there, but that was before losing his wife, and almost losing Garrett. It had reminded him that he had so much to live for, all of it so much more important than ensuring his name was carved onto a sterile monument and tucked away into a hall somewhere. His family was the most important thing in the world to him, and being called up like this now…well, imprisonment would get him nowhere. He’d have to be careful.

The tribunal was convened in a relatively small conference room just before the enormous lecture hall in the center of the building. Miles entered, walked straight up to the table where the three presiding officers sat, and saluted. “Sirs.”

“General Caractacus.” All three saluted back, but it was Rupallier doing the talking, a bald, pale man who looked like he’d never seen the sun, much less space. “Thank you for coming on such short notice.”

As if I had a choice. “Of course.”

“Please sit.” In the single chair that would noticeably set him apart from his personal staff. Shen Lin stiffened slightly, but Miles just stepped forward and sat down, removing his hat and setting it on one folded knee.

“I’m sure you’ve heard about the attack on Pandora,” Rupallier began.

“Through unofficial channels, yes,” Miles interjected. “Why hasn’t the attack been made public yet?”

“We wanted some time to consider the appropriate response for a piracy attack of this severity. Clearly, our efforts so far haven’t been aggressive enough. We decided the best thing to do in this situation is mobilize a division of the Central Fleet to deal with it. It’s an excellent opportunity for the Academy’s rising cadets, and—”

“Cadets?” Miles knew it wasn’t in his best interest to keep interrupting, but he couldn’t help it. “Why would you send out cadets? Why not use the force stationed at Ceyla; they’re weeks closer to the Fringe.”

“The division at Ceyla has orders to maintain its presence there to protect the city and surrounding stations.”

“Surely the risk there is low. It’s not exactly a Fringe planet.”

“Close enough.” Rupallier’s voice rang with finality. “And it’s at the discretion of Central Command to decide if and when to allow cadets to participate in space maneuvers, and that decision is already made.”

Fine. Time to be more direct. “I understand and respect your authority to make those calls. It puzzles me that you’re bringing me into this situation, though.”

“It’s possible that our response will involve a ground presence on Pandora itself,” Admiral Davenport said, smoothly taking the reins of the conversation. “No one in the fleet has more experience in planning and commanding ground operations than you, Miles. And given your personal investment in the colony—”

“Which makes him the last person we need commanding ground troops,” General Sokha interrupted. Rupallier and Davenport both looked at him with the exasperated airs of people who had already had this conversation, but he pressed on. “I’m against your involvement in this action. Your very investment could compromise your ability to make necessary decisions in the heat of the moment. Obviously, my concerns have been overruled,” he added with a glare at his compatriots, “but you should know that you will be under observation, General Caractacus. All of your actions will be open to review, and if they’re found wanting, you’ll be held responsible in a court of military justice.”

It was the perfect storm. Reinstatement, encouragement to undertake close-combat operations with green troops against an unpredictable enemy, and the promise that every single one of his decisions could and would be used against him if they were interpreted the wrong way. Which some of them almost certainly would.

“I feel sure that such a review will be unnecessary,” Davenport snapped. “The situation calls for a strong commander, not a backseat driving committee.”

“And there’s no one else in the entirety of the fleet, in active duty, who could do this?” Miles asked. He already knew what they were going to say, but he wanted it recorded and out in the open.

Admiral Rupallier folded his hands on the table in front of him. “Are you refusing reinstatement, General?” Every staffer in the room tensed, and Miles could almost hear his secretary’s teeth grind.

“I will always do my duty,” Miles replied. “Even if that duty is a hard one.”

“What’s so hard about the situation at hand?” Rupallier asked. “One could almost think of it as a gift from Central Command, letting you back into the field for this operation. Who else would you trust to ensure it gets done right?”

Miles smiled thinly. “Absolutely no one.” Davenport flinched a little, but Miles wasn’t done twisting the knife. “I assume the customary twenty-four hour reinstatement rule applies here, or is that another formality being done away with?”

“Time is of the essence, General,” Rupallier reminded him.

“Certainly, but given that I know nothing of the forces being mobilized, or who my fellow commanding officers will be, I would think that you’d want to minimize mistakes in the field by giving me time to review what intelligence we have on the attack and coordinate a plan of action.”

“Let him do it by the book if that’s how we’ll be judging him,” Sokha said, in an unexpected show of support. “You have twenty-four hours until you leave, General Caractacus. Use them wisely.”

“I plan to.”

“Be back here at 1300 tomorrow to meet the shuttle that will take you to your command,” Rupallier said. “You’re grounded until then. Your military escort—”

“Will be waived.” Both the other commanders looked at Davenport like he was crazy. “For which I’ll take personal responsibility,” he added. “But I don’t see any need for it. It’s not as though Miles is going to run off with state secrets.”

Sokha shrugged. “Any fuckups are on your head, then.”

“I don’t anticipate any problems.” Davenport looked directly at Miles. “Do you?”

“No.” He nodded slightly, then stood up. “Sirs.” He held his salute until it was returned, then left the conference room without a backward glance. His staff held their positions around him, but now at least there were no direct threats.

“Claudia and the girls are en route to meet you in a suite at the Palace Hotel,” Shen Lin said as they walked. “I’ve ensured that the highest level security measures are in place. Everyone attending to them has been personally vetted, and there are three potential exits for them in case of emergency. Your son has transport standing by to take them out of the system as soon as you’re gone.”

It was above and beyond their standard emergency procedures, but Miles wasn’t about to argue. “And Garrett?”

“He’s waiting for you as well.”

He wasn’t waiting at the Palace Hotel, though. Instead, Miles found Garrett waiting for him in the shuttle, sitting in the pilot’s seat. He swiveled around when Miles entered, his expression apprehensive. “So? Is it as bad as we thought?”

Miles sighed. “It’s not good,” he admitted. “I’ll be subject to heightened oversight, and I’ve got very little time to get ready for the mission itself. But I’ve done more with less.”

“And their explanation for why?”

“I’m too good at my job, apparently.”

Garrett snorted. “Those fuckers. I mean yes, you are, but that’s such a flimsy reason to draw you out of retirement when there are dozens of armchair generals champing at the bit to take on ‘pirates.’” He laced his fingers together. They looked red, like he’d been wringing them a lot. “You know they’ll send out the kids.”

“I know. But not Cody.”

“Not Cody,” Garrett affirmed. “I’ve got transport on the way to grab him. He’ll be joining Claudia and the girls, but Ten and Darrel and probably Grennson, if they think they can get away with it. I need you to look out for them. They can’t get hurt.”

Miles nodded. “I’ll do my best.”

“Just make sure that it’s enough, Dad.”

There it was: the specter of Garrett’s distrust in him. For the most part they’d fixed their relationship, through a lot of hard work on both their parts, but every now and then Miles’ past came back to haunt him. “I promise,” he said, feeling the weight of his own words. “I’ll do everything I possibly can to keep them safe.”

Garrett’s eyes were getting as red as his hands, shining too bright for anything but fear and grief. “I know you will,” he said, and Miles almost couldn’t hear him, he spoke so quietly. “I don’t know why I said that.”

“It’s okay. I understand.”

“I love you. I trust you, you know I do.”

“Of course I know,” Miles said gently.

“I’m just so fucking afraid.”


Miles closed the distance between them and pulled Garrett forward into his arms. It wasn’t often that he got a chance to be an actual father to his son these days; Garrett had his own family, his own life and work. But as dark as the circumstances were that led to it, Miles couldn’t be upset over the chance to hold his son as though he were young again. “We’re going to get through this,” he said, and this time he was promising himself. “All of us.”

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

I'm Tripping!

Hi guys!

It's that time of year when my husband and I run off to do something exciting. This time, we're headed to the Kingdom of Cambodia, where my MIL is working as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Oh, the nostalgia.

Well, not really. Togo and Cambodia? Lots of differences, the biggest one that we'll be in Cambodia for less than two weeks. But still, we're incredibly excited!


I'm officially putting Reformation on hold while I'm gone. I have no clue how often I'll get a chance to write, and don't want you to pine for a new chapter when I simply can't put one together. Unofficially, if I get a chance to put words on page and send them winging your way, I absolutely will.

Another trip, in the more distant future: I'm registered for the RT Conference in Atlanta next year, woot! Atlanta, where we can find people who want to do knife stuff, where I've got author friends, where I can drive for a few hours and visit my ficwife's actual, honest-to-goodness house and coo over her pets...what's not to love? Oh yeah, and the conference stuff will be cool too.

So, that's me for now. Wish us luck, darlins!

Reformation: Chapter Five



Notes: More Jonah, yay! Not exactly in the best shape, but he's here. I'll be posting a little later about my upcoming trip to Cambodia and what it means for Reformation, so stay tuned, darlins.

Title: Reformation: Chapter Five

***

Chapter Five



Jonah woke to the steady splat of liquid against metal as it fell down from up high. He would have groaned, but his vocal chords felt too thick and raw. His eyes were swollen, and his nose was stuffed up in a way that could only mean blood, because he never got sick. He forced his eyelids open and looked around.

Looked down, rather, at the ceiling. 

Well, shit. Of all the outcomes he’d predicted, flipping his ship upside down wasn’t on the list. He’d have to check and make sure the engine coolant wasn’t leaking into the maintenance compartment when he and—

“Lacey!” Memory hit him like another blow to the head. Jonah twisted to the side to get a look at her. “Lacey?” She hung limp in her harness, unresponsive. Still just knocked out, Jonah hoped. If he was only waking up now, then it made sense a natural would be a little longer at it. He couldn’t see any blood, so there was that. 

Not that he could really tell the color of anything under the glare of the blinking yellow emergency lights. He needed to get her down and see if he could still fire up the ship’s medical system. The medbot wouldn’t be able to inject her with Regen, but it could still diagnose and treat simple things.

Okay, then. Jonah had to get himself loose before he could take care of Lacey. He let his head dangle and fumbled for the release catch that would open his harness. His fingers were slick and heavy, and his right wrist hurt bad enough that he switched hands after a moment, reaching cross-body to undo the catch. Almost…almost…

The webbing kept him from falling flat on his face, thankfully. Jonah got his feet under him, testing his balance on the slight curve of the ceiling before he pulled his arms free. The control panel in front of him was almost entirely inert, black except for the transmitter light. SOS. Jonah wondered whether or not it was a good idea to keep that going, all things considered. They’d been shot down by hostile forces, and the emergency system would lead anyone right out here. On the other hand, pirates wouldn’t be interested in hunting down one lone ship, while friendly forces out of the Box would. Better to leave it on.

Jonah stumbled the little distance to Lacey’s chair, needing his arms for support just to stay on his feet. He brushed her long, pale hair back and cupped her face in his hands. His fingers left glistening smudges. “Lacey? Honey, you with me?” No response. He needed to get her down.

Undoing her harness was easier than working on his own; catching her was another thing entirely. Lacey was a slim girl, but she was tall and Jonah was far from his best form. He managed to keep her off the ground, barely. It send a shooting pain through his ribcage, but Jonah gritted his teeth and ignored it as he half carried, half dragged Lacey down the hall to the medbot.

The medbot, like the engine failsafes keeping their fuel from irradiating the ship, had its own emergency generator. The bot wasn’t immersive, but Jonah could make do with the handheld diagnostic tool. He set Lacey down, primed the bot for emergency measures, then picked up the wand and touched it lightly to Lacey’s head.

“Diagnosis: concussion, moderate. Fractured ribs: 6, 7, 9, left side. Internal abdominal hemorrhaging: ruptured gall bladder.”

Fuck, that didn’t sound good. “Treatment options?”

“Limited. Remand patient to the nearest medical facility immediately.”

“No can do, I need treatment options for here.”

“Regenerative—”

Jonah slapped the side of the wall, then immediately regretted it when his wrist throbbed painfully. “No, dammit, I need treatment for a natural! You know how to do this, you goddamn machineyou’ve been treating Cody for years, now figure it out!”

The medbot blinked contemplatively for a moment. “Recommended: painkiller injection, localized anti-inflammatory, stabilizing gel for fractures.”

“Confirmed. Get on with it, then.” The process of actually getting the recommended treatment into Lacey, usually a minor symphony of lights and tiny pinpricks from the medbot, came down to Jonah grabbing the things it indicated out of the cabinet behind it and injecting them himself. He thanked his stars that Lacey was still unconscious through his fumbling.

By the time he was done, she seemed to be resting a little easier, at least. Jonah slumped down onto his hands and knees beside her, turning laboriously into a sitting position and just breathing for a second. He could feel his own ribs giving him problems, and his head ached fiercely. Half-heartedly, he touched the wand to himself.

“Diagnosis: Concussion, moderate. Fractured ribs: 4, 5. Broken nose. Internal bruising. Sprain to right wrist extensors. Recommendation: Regen.”

“Of course,” he muttered. “Of fucking course.” One little shot and he’d be spruced right up, while Lacey had to deal with goddamn ruptured organs and all she got was a painkiller. Part of Jonah wanted to refuse treatment, whether out of a bizarre sense of solidarity or guilt. Personally, he suspected guilt.

You can’t help her if you don’t help yourself. When had his inner voice started sounding like Garrett? Get the damn shot, feel guilt later. Or better yet, never.

The medbot had helpfully lit up the syringe with the Regen in it. Jonah took it and shot himself in the thigh. Less than a minute later, the double-vision he hadn’t even realized he’d had disappeared, he started to breathe easier as the muscles around his fractured ribs relaxed, and his headache vanished. Even his nose cleared up some, which—dumbass, he must have hit himself in the face with his own hand to break it.

“The wonders of modern—whoa.” Whoa, because the ship had just moved. It had moved. What the hell? Jonah took his jacket off, stained as it was, and laid it over Lacey, then headed for the back door. There was a porthole there, an old-fashioned one that usually just looked out on the blackness of space. Right now, though, it looked out on a wall of water lashing the ship. Jonah didn’t know exactly where they were or how they were oriented, other than upside down, but clearly the storm had caught up to them. The top of the ship wasn’t nearly as firm a landing place as the other side was, and whether it was rain or actual waves, the fierceness of the storm was moving them around. Too much movement and they might be swept away.

The ship had stabilizing, magnetic tie-downs that could be used in bad weather, but they all presumed that the ship was upright when they were deployed, so they’d be useless. Or…

“Oh, please still be on board.” Jonah headed for the storage compartment. The magnetic tie-downs were a newer innovation for the ship, retrofit into the old casings. The old version had been rather crude, by Central System standards, but a good solution for landing in adverse areas and conditions. The expanding harpoon heads had worked in rock, in dirt, even to a degree in sand. They were disruptive and environmentally unsound, but right now that was exactly what Jonah needed.

“C’mon, come on.” Spare parts for the engine, spare parts for the shielding, a box full of—oh, hey, good thing he found those before Cody got curious one day, because Jonah didn’t want to explain the use of analogue sex toys to his kid. Ten had probably told him all about them anyway. Harpoon, harp—there. There was…

One. One harpoon. Not even two, to distribute the load. No, he got one fucking harpoon.

Better than none. Jonah headed for the casing at the back, the one that had the shallowest angle to overcome. If he could get the harpoon into that one, he could swivel it so that it landed just a few meters away. The manual controls responded sluggishly to his handling, but the housings for the harpoon and the mag locks were a perfect match, and it didn’t take long to refit.

He’d have to divert a lot of power from one of the generators to get the juice for a good stick, though, and engine containment wasn’t an option as long as they were trapped inside the ship.

So. Emergency beacon or medbot.

“Fuck.”

 He had no idea how long they’d be stuck out here. The beacon could bring either good to the rescue, or bad down on them so hard they never even saw it coming. The medbot was basic, at its core, but provided help that Jonah couldn’t even begin to guess about. Then again, it had already recommended a hospital for Lacey. How much better could it do?

In the end, Jonah had the bot identify all the injections he’d need for Lacey, just in case it lost power completely. The ship was wiggling on the rock now, back and forth, helpless to the power of the hurricane. Whether they were on the verge of going over a cliff or not, he didn’t know, but he didn’t want to find out the hard way.

The power reroute was easy. Aiming the harpoon into the darkness and hoping for a stick was harder, but Jonah just took a deep breath, pointed it down, and fired.

The light on the top of the casing glowed green. It was sunk.

The light illuminating the medbot, and Lacey, went dark.