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Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8


Written by Protege moi
Last updated: 07/30/2007 11:36:51 AM

Chapter 6

The words rang in Remyís ears. "Youíre a spy!" Damnit! Why in Godís name was Lilandra making first contact now? Did she forget that sheíd sent Remy to the Southern Hemisphere? Or did she not really care that she could be handing him his death sentence with this first contact? Whatever the case was, Remy had to work out some kind of tactic to get out of this new accusation, and fast!

Remy chortled, "A spy, hein?"

"Well, it makes sense! You come, and then our Empire decides to make contact with your planet? That canít just be some kind of coincidence. Plus, you know of know our language, which is odd for someone whose people arenít even a part of our Empire!" LaiíNal was disgusted. Why, in the name of Sharra, would he be playing dumb?"

"Dere be other reasons why a person would know about yí Empire," Remy retorted.

LaiíNal spat out, "How?" She was incensed. Now he was being cryptic!

"Yí ever heard of de Starjammers?" It was grasping at straws, Remy knew that much, but it was worth a shot.

Nodding her head slightly in acquiescence, LaiíNal narrowed her eyes slightly. "Go on..."

Okay, homme, sheís taken the bait, but now can yí reel her in?

"Corsair, he be Terran, no? But he lives in your Empire, speaks de language, knows yí history, even tíough mí world doesnít know íbout yours."

"Okay, so whatís your point?" LaiíNal was getting impatient now. Her best friend was in danger! They both were! Except, LaiíNal was of the opinion that Reia was a little more naïve than she, which, added to the fact that there was a spy/fugitive/outlaw living in Reiaís apartment made LaiíNal extremely uneasy.

"Mípoint is dat heís not a spy, no?" For a fleeting instant Remy had thought of claiming membership with the Starjammers, but that seemed like too far of a stretch.

"Heís not a spy, Iíll grant you that, but heís a FUGITIVE!"

Remy had to admit, her refute did cut with a certain truth. Perhaps it was a good thing that he hadnít claimed to be a part of the outlawed Starjammers, but his current tactic wasnít exactly working, either Time tí switch gears, homme.

But before Remy could start speaking, Reia piped up, "Okay, look, even if he is a spy, so what?" She could see her friend looking at her with an open jaw. Knowing her best friend, she had a good idea of what was running through her head at the moment. It was probably something like íAre you insane? Listen to yourself, honestly Reia!í But Reia had a point that she was sure LaiíNal had never though of.

"Like, really," Reia continued, "Whoís he a spy for?" She looked at Remy, who remained silent.

LaiíNal interjected, "Heís not answering you, Reia, because heís probably working for the Government."

Remy sat back and put his cake on the table next to the sofa. It no longer held the same appeal and he really didnít feel like eating it right now. His mind was now running through all the possible outcomes, and how heíd need to play his hand in order to come out on top! But, right now, Reia was defending him. Why? He had no idea, but for the meantime, he wasnít about to look a gift horse in the mouth. So, Remy decided he would just enjoy the show until his involvement was needed. He, therefore, divided his attention between the fight that was going on between two best friends, and the newscast that had started up again after the commercial break.

The authority on Terrans was now trying to explain the complex structure of Earthís governments. It came as quite a shock to the interviewer that the Terrans were not unified under one government, yet capable of very primitive space technology. Not hearing anything he didnít already know, Remy shifted his attention more to what LaiíNal and Reia were "discussing."

"So, what if heís working for the government! Big deal!"

"Honestly, Reia, I canít believe Iím hearing this from you! Like, whereís your head, girl!"

It seemed to Remy that there was some sort of passion building in Reia, and he watched the two girls now with peaked interest. He forgot about the media screen entirely, for at the moment, Remy was more the expert on Earth than any high ranking Shiíar.

Reia lowered her voice, so as not to have other tenants of the apartment complex hear the current argument brewing between her and her best friend. Plus, should anyone hear and decide to report it to on of Toríkolís goonís, all three of them would be in some serious trouble.

Reia took at deep breath, and spoke as softly as she could, while still sounding serious. "Look, Lai, I know youíre concerned for my safety, here. If he is a spy, then me letting him stay here is putting my neck on the line. I understand that, Lai, I really do.

"However, this might be a good thing, if you stop to think about it." Reia was speaking in almost a whisper now. "You know, as well as I do that, as much as he looks out for me, Toríkol is corrupt. He sits in his plush, expensive chair in his richly decorated office, tucked away in his office tower that stands out like nobility among the peasants. He taxes us highly, because he can, and he never puts back into the community, he never gives back to the people!

"Look at us, Lai, weíre the lucky oneís in this hemisphere. We have enough food to eat, we have a good shelter that doesnít fill with water every time it rains, or isnít overcrowded with people that outnumber what the house can hold! We hold good jobs, honest ones! Weíre able to go to our studies; we have enough to not be wearing rags. Compared to 90 of the population of the Southern Hemisphere, weíre rich, Lai! But weíre sitting on the poverty line when it comes to the rest of the Empire. And why? Because Toríkol and all the other gang leaders who hold some power are greedy. They take, and take, and what have we got to show for it?"

LaiíNal stared wide-eyed at her friend. It was hard to believe Reia was saying this so passionately. But in reality, LaiíNal had felt this way for a long time, sheíd just never voiced it for fear of being overheard. Maybe Reia wasnít so naïve after all.

Reia paused to take a breath, and then she started again. "And the Majestrix is totally aware that weíre in this predicament! Think of the shame; the Empireís Throne World has the most poverty out of any planet that it governs! And itís not like she hasnít tried to change it!

"The north sends in provisions, and the gangs intercept it. They never reach the public! We get medical teams and supplies sent over the border, and what does Toríkol do? He keeps them for himself, if he doesnít kill them first. Sharra forbid we ever get sick...oh...wait...we do...and unless we have the money to pay for it, we suffer. And, Lai, you know as well as I do that it happens a lot!

"And when the Government sends any kind of authority down to try and work things out, ToríKol makes sure of their death!

"So, now, youíre going to get all upset because the Majestrix is turning to espionage? Can you really blame her?"

LaiíNal was silent for a moment as she considered Reiaís words. Should anyone have overheard them, she knew their lives could be in the gravest of dangers. But, on the other hand, if Reia was right, this could mean hope. The rest of the Empire experienced wealth that the residents of Bara Nocta could only dream of. Perhaps the reign of terror would end. But could one man bring down an entire hemisphere? LaiíNal studied the alien in front of her. He looked a little pale, and he certainly had reason to be. If she could figure him out, certainly Toríkol would not be so blind. Looking at the Terran, LaiíNal had the distinct impression that he had similar thoughts running through his head.

Instead of jumping up to agree with Reiaís words, Remy was dumbfounded. And thankful! For the moment, he was quite content to listen to the two women to reason his presence with each other. However, there was a large part of his gut telling him to tell the truth. Remy had learned long ago that his gut had an annoying habit of being right. Taking a deep breath and standing up, Remy stared Reia in the eyes then LaiíNal.

"Yí both are right." He said the words as calmly and neutrally as he could manage. Remy held his breath; he wasnít sure of the reaction heíd get from either of them.


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