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   Chapter 6 No.6

The Galaxii Series Omnibus 1 By Christina Engela Characters: 5268

Updated: 2018-06-29 12:02

"Fine. I'm Lt. Nordyke – comtech, I.S.S. Antares. What's your emergency?"

"My ship's had a – um, well, breakdown."

"Could you be more specific?"

"Well, the stardrive's out." Mykl said sheepishly, "Way, way out. No way I can fix it."

"Our entechs can probably have a go at it when we get there." Said Nordyke. "To have you on your way again."

D'Angelo was a proud man and the inconvenience of his predicament was an embarrassment to him. When he was a fighter pilot – in his rather extraordinary youth before joining the Space Fleet, he could just put his aircraft down if he experienced mechanical problems – and, barring which side of the Lines he'd landed on, he could just walk back home. If his plane took a critical hit – say, by ack-ack, he'd be dead instantly – in which case he'd have nothing further to worry about. There'd be none of this worrying about how to get home nonsense, or running out of air or freezing to death without power! He was used to being able to get himself out of situations without anyone's help.

Pegasus was a sore point, especially when she needed repairs. Usually he would have to take out a loan or empty out his bank account. Repairs were made when and if finances could allow and, as a result, Pegasus was no longer exactly shipyard specification – in fact, she'd been extensively modified over the years, since before he even bought her. Civilian corporations insured their ships against deep space breakdowns, but insurance companies would only insure ships that were at least 98% space worthy. So that left him at the go

Commander Nore had given his word. Commander Nore hoped he wouldn't have to eat his words, but that was his nature, because he was a cynical man. The reason he was so cynical could have arisen from many things: an improper upbringing, an unhappy childhood, or just one of those lives lived by deadlines and estimates of how long it would take to unscrew things which had taken other people far less time to screw up in the first place.

He considered his options while remembering, again, that before his most recent promotion just a few months before, he had been Lt. Commander Nore for the last 13 years. It honestly felt good to finally reach that level of seniority, it really did. Unfortunately, his late arrival at that level – one year before his retirement, meant that his only prospect for another promotion would be when he became 'Mr. Nore' again. Looking back over his 40 years' service, he felt a pang of regret at having spent most of his travels through the depths of space tinkering with engines instead of looking out the windows.

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