As she turned the corner from Tarm’s office, fully knowing he heard nothing she said as he was concentrating on her ass, she kept turning over the data chip he gave her wondering just how many more he had in that piece of shit Old Earth thing of his. After the briefest of moments, she decided the next time he was out on a run, she’d have to go through it and see just what kind of information he had on her. Tarm does his homework…or rather he has other people do it for him. By now, in the few weeks she had been around, there was no doubt in her mind that he had one of his guys do some checking up on her, which means go in and dupe files without leaving a trace – if his hackers could get further than she could.
Getting to her rented quarters in Ford, she settled for a fizz, grabbed her holo-cube and sank in the sorry excuse for what was passing as a sofa. Taking the data chip out from the inside pocket sewn in to her corseted top and inserted it to the holo-cube. Quickly the files started streaming with corresponding pictures of her … associates in this little endeavor Tarm set up for her – or set her up for. Everyone gets fucked over, just a matter of how hard and how long it’s going to take. The holo-cube signaled the data processing was complete – perfect.
“Show me “Objective”, she ordered.
Working. . .
“Objective found,” the tinny voice sounded-off.
“Well fucking read the damn thing to me. Gods why does this have to be so difficult.”
“Gods not found in Objective. Objective as given by Commander Tarm Wallunga, President of the Galactic Gunslingers, First Chapter, and overall badass so appreciate this woman.”
She chuckled at his arrogance. Of course he would put those qualifiers in for himself, couldn’t resist, could he – dick.
“You are to deliver 2 tons of fesh to the Tjakiri System, Claire Dock, collect payment, and return here to Satio, Ford Orbital. Meeting you at your ship for uploading cargo will be Higard Slooter. Sloot will stow said cargo and ensure the tracking is functional. Hey, it’s business and my business so I’m tracking it, get over it. When dealing with Black Omega, how does one say this, if you’re not making enemies then you’re making friends and that’s worse. You need to get in and get out without so much as causing a ripple or mentioning anything of my name. Stop, just stop with wanting to ask questions and get it done.”
“No more Objective,” tinny finished.
“First of all, you asshole, “ looking at Tarm’s holo, “fuck you for knowing that I would have questions and second you can take your candy apple ass and shove it…fucker.”
She really hated how she had allowed him to get under her skin in such a little amount of time but then the holo version of him being just as arrogant? Gahhhhhh…no. That swagger in his voice stirred things in her she thought she stamped down moons ago, that cocky fuck you chip on his shoulder just made him all the more interesting and she couldn’t afford interesting. But she needed him – she needed him to teach her what he knew, how to become the best pilot she could, the ins-and-outs of the systems and especially what he knew about the Rats. She didn’t just stumble upon Tarm Wallunga, former Lieutenant and Shuttle Pilot of The Federation and heir to Daddy Big Bucks at Wallunga Corp. No, she sought him out and chose him from her list of degenerate potentials. Little did she know just what she was getting herself into when she made that choice.
After going through the rest of the data on her ‘cube, she got up and headed to the shower closet, stripping and dropping clothes as she went. Draining the last of the fizz, she chucked it in the bin with nothing but swoosh, “Way to go, Wildcat..two points, “ she said.
“Comms, find and signal Higard Slooter. No video, “ she commanded.
“Searching for Hig-ard Slooter,” it beeped back.
A scratchy, garbled low voice boomed from her ‘cube. “Whoe’er tis is, best start answering why you interruptin’ me during my folly.”
“I couldn’t give two shits what your pock-marked ass is doing. It’s Tauslah – meet me at my ship in 90, “ she said and abruptly ended the comms.
Turning on the jets and steam to full temp, she stepped inside her shower and let the water cascade over her body. Putting her hands up against the wall and leaning into the stream of water, hoping it would do its magic to loosen the scars on her back and eventually make her forget they were even there, she centered herself as it was time to prepare. She remembered her teachings about Old Earth, particularly what were called the Samurai. Steeped in tradition and ritual, when the warriors went off to battle, its was their wives who would cleanse them, tend to them, and dress them – a ritualistic honor done with grace, humility and reverence. Once the ritual was complete, the wife would kneel and bow at his feet in ultimate supplication of respect and profound honor. She stepped out of the shower and crossed to the drying tube to begin her own preparations. The glass on the wall holding the image of her staring back, she would honor herself as she had done so many times before…alone.