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   Chapter 14 No.14

The Galaxii Series Omnibus 1 By Christina Engela Characters: 5379

Updated: 2018-06-29 12:01


"Mykl." Ripley said, carefully, "I have to ask you this, but as an old friend, I want the truth."

"Well, " he said weighing up all the sins of his past life to fathom what he could possibly have done that she would ask such a thing. "As an old friend, I'll certainly try my best."

She finally brought the words to her lips, forcing the issue as though she could hardly believe she was actually going to ask the question.

"Mykl…are you a Corsair?"

There as an awkward silence. Then he laughed. He laughed and laughed – and laughed some more. Had it not been for the kind of week he'd experienced, he probably wouldn't have found it quite so funny. He paused to wipe his eyes – saw the bemused expression on her face, then carried on, rocking from side to side in the chair till his sides hurt.

"Mykl, really." She finally remarked, somewhat humorlessly.

When he finally made an effort to stop due to sore sides, he looked at her as seriously as he could, and said:

"No, Ripley – I am not a Corsair!"

"Oh. Well. Good." She said, more relieved than annoyed.

She was glad he wasn't a Corsair. Well, he wasn't one. As a loderunner operator, he'd had dealings with them, though. There were all sorts of people at the space ports in or near the Omegan Quadrant, especially the newer colonies. Mykl had even got to know a few reasonably well at the bars there. Okay, maybe just one. He didn't like them much, except for old Dud Milligan, who'd become a Corsair in the first place because – well, because he thought they got lots of women. His feelings for old Dud were more like pity. Like any t

nks and snacks at a local restaurant in the capital of Ahginos… until the men with guns came, bursting into the building, beating them, threatening them with weapons, and forcing them to the floor…

"We were held hostage by the revolutionaries for seven days." He said at last. "They put us in the basement… tortured five of us to death before the colonial police and marines finally broke through and got us out."

"What was it all about?"

He gave a sarcastic little laugh. "What is that sort of thing usually about?" He asked. "Ideology. Religion. Hate. They wanted the Senate to stop interfering in local religious affairs – banning their discrimination against groups their religious sect didn't like. It didn't happen, because the mighty Terran Senate doesn't negotiate with terrorists making demands... And all those people died for nothing anyway. Twenty of them, five of us." He said bitterly. "I lost five of my crew there. Five! Good people, every one of them – and all they died for was pointless hate, not even worth remembering. Shane was one of them."

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