S1:Ep4 - You're NoBody 'Till SomeBody Loves You

Started by Lomari, February 07, 2020, 02:27:33 pm

Rian Carpenter

Rian looked up from the data-pad in front of him. He had been scouring the cortex for any hints of his father's activity. Ever since he outed himself as a Russo to the crew, the likelihood of his father coming knocking grew every day. He couldn't pin anything down besides the banal updates that got to the public about the mine and its profits. Just some crime reports about a couple murders involving a suspect who couldn't feel any pain. Son of a bitch, Buck Stanley was still alive.

What in the hell is he and my old man up to?

Just as that thought started to rattle back and forth in his mind, the summons to the cargo bay rang out. The cook dropped his tablet and picked up his coat off the chair in the armory behind him. While technically he resided in the common bunk room, he spent most of his alone time in the armory. Researching their security threats, working out, or occasionally doing the maintenance and minor customization on his weaponry the room was meant for.

Having been restless, he emerged from the armory into the cargo bay already dressed for the trip. Carpenter was again wearing a suit to mask the presence of his body armor, but the vest and jacket were near twice as thick as his normal suits and he was in the midst of wrapping a simple black scarf around his neck as he held his rifle up against his shoulder in the other hand. Last time he needed to escort the team he didn't have his weapon of choice when he really could have used it. He was better than most with a pistol but especially in the elements they were going into, a long-gun was going to be a necessity.

"Bad news?"

The security specialist / cook cut right to the chase as his captain and semi-relation entered the bay.

Tabitha Haemish

Location: Med Bay

Tabitha made her way around the improvised medical room (which had once upon a time been an office), a pad of paper in one hand a pencil in the other. She chewed on the edge of the writing implement, looking into the cabinets and drawers she'd pulled open and mentally cataloging what they'd used up during their last two jobs and what she'd need to replace when they landed on St. Albans. Viktor knew some of the folk down there and she was excited to replenish their supplies and support the preacher's friends at the same time. Jotting down 'gauze' at the end of her list, she called it 'done' and slipped the pencil back into the mass of curls tied up at the top of her head. The notebook disappeared into the front pocket of her navy blue frock and she set to closing all the storage back up.

"This is your Captain speaking. We got ourselves a storm down on St. Albans. Ain't irregular but it does necessitate a change of plans. Meet me in the cargo bay quick-like and we'll go over details."

The doctor closed the last drawer and spun on her heel, her hands in her pockets and she skipped out of the infirmary and down the steps to the cargo bay, some of her curls bouncing free of their leather tie to frame her pale face and make her look only slightly more woodsy and wild than she'd looked a moment before. Her bare feet pattered softly against the metal floor, the noise announcing her arrival.

"Bad news?" Rian asked, always prepared as he entered the cargo hold from the opposite direction.

"Good news?" Tabby offered up, brows raised and a smile lighting up her face. Always good to be hopeful in these kinds of situations.


Viktor Söderberg

Viktor could see the planet and a bloom of happiness filled his chest. He just finished up a quick note to his family saying he'd be in for a visit soon when Barnaby's voice came over the comm. He trailed a thick, black overcoat over one shoulder and slung the strap of his shore leave bag over the other. 

"This is your Captain speaking. We got ourselves a storm down on St. Albans. Ain't irregular but it does necessitate a change of plans. Meet me in the cargo bay quick-like and we'll go over details."

Viktor swung into the bay smiling and carefree. The storm couldn't spoil his mood - if it did he'd never be happy.  "Hidy gang. Gotta love the weather at home, dontcha!"

Thackery Arlington III

Tā zěnme gǎn! Arlo's hand flew to his bow tie (navy blue with satin green striping along the bias today), partly in an unconscious imitation of Grand-Mère Arlington and her authentic Australian pearls that dated all the way back to Earth-That-Was, and partly to make well sure said hand couldn't even be mistaken for hovering near the controls. He absolutely believed in the cranky Mattie's willingness to make good on her threat.

Shock kept him silent, which was just as well, because there was no civilized retort he could give. Of course he knew that folk out here spoke more... roughly than he was accustomed to - he'd even witnessed it himself, firsthand! - but to have such violence directed at him? And with such little provocation?! He'd hardly touched a thing! And pasty??

Arlo stared at Mattie, lips pressed in a thin line, eyes perhaps very slightly bugging out. Fortunately, the captain's arrival prevented the conversation (if it could be called such a thing) from continuing. He considered informing Goodweather of his crew member's behavior, but tattling like a common schoolchild was beneath a man of Arlo's station, so instead, he turned on his heel and following the captain to the cargo bay without another word, nose as high in the air as it could go.

Mattie Rooney

Mattie was in a bad mood, but not in too bad of a mood to feel encouraged by Arlo's expression of barely contained outrage and the way he clutched at his invisible pearls. A sneer tugged at her lips, but before it gave way to another verbal assault, the Captain entered the galley. Probably for the best.

She gave Barnaby a quick rundown of the situation on the planet, keeping her grumbling to a minimum. As he made the ship-wide announcement and turned to leave the bridge with the two crewmates in tow, Mattie shot Arlo a malicious look behind his back -- the look of a schoolyard bully warning their mark about the beating they were in for after the bell rang. Then, as the trio headed for the cargo bay, she seemed to completely forget about Arlo's blood in the water, her mind already moving to more important matters.

"Bad news?"

"Good news?"

"That depends on how much y'all like ridin' through a snowstorm," she remarked glumly. For all she knew, Tabby might well find a way to frame it as a fun adventure; too bad Mattie was immune to any kind of contagious positivity. As if on cue, the preacher entered, his chipper demeanor the polar opposite of hers.

"Hidy gang. Gotta love the weather at home, dontcha!"

She turned to look at the Captain, waiting for him to explain the situation properly to the others.

Barnaby Goodweather

With everyone assembled, stragglers like Chris and the passenger Mr. Potter filtering next to last and last, respectively, Barnaby was able to get a good look at everyone. He liked what he saw, for the most part. Mr. Potter still gave him the heebie-jeebies but hadn't made any trouble yet. Barnaby was sure he'd be glad they were almost to their destination. The rest of the news maybe not so much. "Alright folks. Thanks for comin'. I'll get right to it. We're narrowing in on St. Albans, we shoulda been landing in about an hour or so." He paused. "That's the good news. Bad news is we can't land, not where we thought; place called Primary Claim. Storm passin' through says we gotta land at Secondary Claim, they tell me is half-day's journey in the best of conditions. That your recollection, Preacher? Mona?" He let them answer and considered their options. He couldn't shake the feeling that he didn't have a choice, and so he gave in to that inevitability. "So. All that considered, we'll just sit tight up here in orbit 'till the storm passes. Land at Primary Claim like we reckoned. Safest thing. Everyone get cozy, might be a spell."

Everyone seemed content with this course and Barnaby pulled Chris aside. "Hey Chrissy, make sure the orbital navigation array is pinging at the right waves, don't wanna spin out into space, savvy?" Chris nodded and went to do his work. Seeing that everything was in order, Barnaby turned to head to the cockpit to find Mr. Potter blocking his path. "We'll get your boots snowy in no time, Mr. Potter. Just hang tight. Shouldn't be more'n a day or so."

Mr. Potter's hands clutched at his red briefcase, knuckles white, his jaw clenched and visibly twitching. "I am afraid this plan is a ...no...go," he informed the captain, his voice slow and overly drawn out, like every word took eons to form and complete. The leather of the bag's handles creaked, wrinkled hands wringing the life out of it slowly and rhythmically.

"How long is forever?" he asked, leaning toward Barnaby and jutting his nose at him accusingly, "Sometimes, just one second," the man answered, bushy brows furrowed in barely contained anger, although his tone remained even and strangely greasy.

"I knew who I was this morning, but I've changed a few times since then, and we must make landfall on schedule," he demanded, almost moving to remove one hand from his briefcase, likely to point or wave a finger emphatically. However, at the last second, his hand clamped back down on the handle almost frantically. "You have been paid for a timeline, and the timeline must be kept...on...time. I insist. You have given your word. We land today. Now. Or. No pay," he finally decided, shoulders relaxing and his spine straightening, which brought his nose out of Barnaby's personal space bubble and back into his own. A strained and rarely used smile pulled his lips in a taunt line, his eyes blank and devoid of the joy or mirth the gesture might have imparted when placed upon just about any face but his.

Barnaby's jaw fell, his mouth agape, concern on his face. What the hell was this guy talking about? "I... uh..." He tried to swallow, but his mouth was dry. "You see, Mr. Potter, all due respect, it just ain't safe. Might take us even longer. Storm could be over in, I dunno, a few hours." The confrontation hadn't waited for the rest of the crew to depart. Barnaby felt a powerful need to assert his captaincy. "And as Captain-" An idea. "-Couldn't risk me and mine for less than double what we agreed on."

"Deal," Potter replied simply, then turned to walk around Barnaby and find a nice spot in the far corner to brood. "You tell me when we are landed," he called from across the cargo bay, then fell into silence and stared into space.

A deep breath, exhaled sharply out of his cheeks and Barnaby was able to relax again. "Okay, folks. Belay that recent set of orders. New set formulating. We're landing at Secondary Claim afterall. We'll take the mule, only five spots onner so-" He looked at the assembled crew and did some math in his head. "-Me and Mr. Potter o'course. Who else? I reckon-" His gaze fell on Rian, and quickly shifted away. "-Mattie. You got some survival experience. Might need it. Preacher, you're native, could do with a body who knows his way around. And hell, whataya say, Mr. Arlo? Let's see what you got." He nodded, satisfied. "That'll do. Chris, I'll need your help converting the mule for snow. Mona knows what's what. Use Rian if'n you need help. Tabs, make sure we got supplies we need on the mule. When the weather clears hopefully we can ourselves stocked up, too. Check the larders and the like. Use Rian if'n you need help." That was that. Decision was made. Barnaby checked the time. "We got forty-five till we land. Everybody who's comin' ashore, bundle up. It's gonna be cold."


Co-written with Lomari

Tabitha Haemish

May 21, 2020, 09:28:53 am #46 Last Edit: May 21, 2020, 10:28:22 am by Lomari
"That depends on how much y'all like ridin' through a snowstorm," Mattie asked, and Tabby set a finger on her lower lip in thought. Maybe she liked it a lot? She hadn't tried it so she wasn't sure if she liked it at all or not, but she was always willing to try new things. And with that mental decision, her smile returned and she beamed warmly in Mattie's direction, silently praising her for such a fun suggestion, as well as having made a new friend! She'd entered with Arlo and they looked absolutely thrilled to be together. Her hands clasped over her heart and she rocked back on her heels with the effort it took to contain her joy.
 
"Hidy gang. Gotta love the weather at home, dontcha!" Viktor announced as he entered and the doctor turned the full strength of her smile in his direction. He looked much happier than the had in the last weeks, and there was color in his face. Turning, she made her way over to him and stood on tip-toes to place her hands on his cheeks, smushing the together just slightly, inspecting his face and seeming to find everything more than satisfactory. Her hands lowered and she patted his heart happily, thanking it for pumping so thoroughly and bringing life back into their preacher's eyes.

Hearing the presentation begin, Tabitha twirled on her bare heel to face their captain, her hands idly untucking the hem of her over-sized knit sweater, the girl positively drowning in the pink fabric. There was a storm down below, and they'd need to bide their time and wait for it to pass. That sounded reasonable, but it did mean no riding through a snow storm. Tabby offered Mattie and apologetic look, knowing how much she wanted to go out into the blizzard. Once the meeting was over, she'd offer to keep the other woman company so she wouldn't' have to think too hard about not being able to go on that cold adventure down on the planet.

The meeting, however, apparently had no intentions of being over when their guest began speaking sternly and strangely with the Captain. Her brows furrowed lightly and hands rose to tug at some of her blonde curls. Mister Potter was quite sweaty and he looked much paler than he had when he'd arrived. She crept a little closer to the pair, stopping when a deal was made and the man stalked past her to stand in a corner. Baby blue eyes watched him and she chewed hard on her lower lip, wondering if she should get him some water or some medication. He looked quite unwell.

She was still staring in his direction when Barnaby turned to give her her orders. His voice made her flinch and she turned her attention back to the Captain. "Tabs, make sure we got supplies we need on the mule. When the weather clears hopefully we can ourselves stocked up, too. Check the larders and the like. Use Rian if'n you need help."

"I'd love some help!" she said cheerily, turning to look in Rian's direction and raising her brows in question, "Would it be okay if you helped me? You have a better eye than I do for adventure and road trips! I can get the medical supplies, what else do we need?" she asked, hopping up and down in excitement at being able to do something to help prepare her family for this thrilling new opportunity. Her hands lowered to grab one of Rian's, ready to either pull him along or let him pull her!

Rian Carpenter

May 22, 2020, 11:51:46 am #47 Last Edit: May 22, 2020, 11:53:31 am by Rian Carpenter
"I'd love some help!...Would it be okay if you helped me? You have a better eye than I do for adventure and road trips! I can get the medical supplies, what else do we need?"

Rian was for just a second a statue. He'd gotten prepped for the cold journey he worried might be necessitated by the lousy local weather. Some say meticulous, others say anal retentive, he'd say neurotic. A sort of inventory of all the magazines he'd stuffed into the customized pockets in his jacket and vest. Then there were the two pistols, and magazines for them.

Unfreezing The former Russo said:

"Ah, uh yeah. One sec."

He blinked a couple times and kept his business-like poker face on. With a flick of his finger the bolt on his rifle was disengaged - click and then the magazine popped out into his waiting hand. Clack. The gun-hand, now hands full of guns and ammo walked back over to the armory, plopping his ammo and the rifle down on the workbench, only just getting started.

Rian shot Tabby a look of slight embarrassment. He'd prepared for a mission he wasn't going on, and over prepared at that. Given how the last job went, it would be understandable if he had possibly gone overboard as clip after clip of ammo clacked onto the workbench. Finally with his jacket off and was draped over the bench's chair, despite it not being tall enough to keep the jacket from draping over the floor.

Not wanting to keep Tabby waiting any longer he left the pistols and their ammo strapped up to his chest.

"Sorry doc... so we need to get them supplies..."

He stopped mid-step as he walked out of the armory then turned right around.

"Sorry!"

Rian jogged back to the armory and started packing his rifle, and the clips into a duffel bag, then a couple pistols from the Darling's inventory, and then another box of rounds.

ZIP

Duffel now swung over his shoulder he motioned with a jerk of his neck towards the med bay.

"My part's done. Guess we just need gauze, tampons and something for fevers maybe?"

The tampons were for bullet wounds. Get in enough gunfights and you learn real quick what works at stopping blood in a pinch.

Viktor Söderberg

While waiting for instruction to begin, Tabitha made her way over to Viktor and stood on tip-toes to place her hands on his cheeks, smushing them together just slightly. Her hands lowered and she patted his heart. He stuck his tongue out a little at her in jest when she squished his cheeks and when she put her hands on his chest he lowered his head down and gave her a little peck on the top of the head.

He wasn't surprised to hear that the storm was going to require them to change their landing location. It wouldn't be a fun trek through the snow, but it could be done. The captain made the right choice, in his opinion, to wait the storm out. It would be much more comfortable up here.

Unfortunately, their passenger took issue with that decision. "You have been paid for a timeline, and the timeline must be kept...on...time. I insist. You have given your word. We land today. Now. Or. No pay,"
Viktor began to interject that landing in this storm wouldn't be ideal and the journey back to Primary Claim would be very cold and long. He didn't have time to do this, however. The deal was changed double the money to land now.
Frankly, he might have tried for triple, knowing the terrain if the storm didn't let up.

"Okay, folks. Belay that recent set of orders. New set formulating. We're landing at Secondary Claim afterall. We'll take the mule, only five spots onner so -- Mattie. You got some survival experience. Might need it. Preacher, you're native, could do with a body who knows his way around. And hell, whataya say, Mr. Arlo? Let's see what you got."

It was an interesting group, to say the least, but Barnaby knew their skills and Viktor couldn't deny they would be the best for the job.

"Bundle up is putting it lightly. Traveling through this storm won't be the best time we've ever had. We'll be able to do it, most likely, but it'll be a smidge miserable for a bit.
"Those that don't have snow gear can pick some up when we land, at the very least I recommend the boots, gloves and goggles. Hats too, if you don't got one. Snowsuits if the storm's real bad."
He let out a sigh. Riding the storm out on the ship would have been so much nicer, but home was home and he was certainly used to snowstorms by now.

He stepped to Barnaby putting his back to Mr. Potter and whispered "Argument could be made, crew wouldn't have needed to buy snow gear if we'd waited. What're the chances he'd pay for that too?"

Lomari

May 26, 2020, 11:50:36 am #49 Last Edit: May 26, 2020, 12:04:19 pm by Lomari
Ship Time: 1305
Planet Time: 1003
Syncing...
...
...
Ship Time: 1003
Location: Secondary Claim, St, Albans

The Darling vibrated and groaned in mild protest as it set its full weight down onto the empty landing pad at Secondary Claim, the sound of the metal landing clamp securing the ship into spot echoing through the metallic hull in welcome. As the ship powered down most of its functions, the temperature dropped significantly before the Darling had a chance to let its heating system kick in and bring it back up to a comfortable temperature. That left ten or so minutes of their ship being mildly uncomfortable before the thrum of the heating turning on finally began to pump the vessel full of warmth again. Outside, dock workers bundled up for the typical cold of the planet worked to brush some mildly accumulated snow off the dock controls and while they registered the ship in their systems and went through the checks and balances required, which did include a small docking fee being sent to their Captain's data pad.

The Mule had been prepped as much as it could have been, supplied strapped in tight and its wheels removed from the main chassis, its hover functionality more or less re-calibrated for a snowy terrain. Mona had helped them prepare, had worked with Viktor on a small walk-through of typical snow storm conditions, and then had left to pack the rest of her belongings. When it was time to depart, some of the crew had already gathered in the cargo hold, including Chris who looked apologetic as he stood with the tall blonde viking and let his new Captain know he'd be getting off here as well. Tabby just about imploded from the loss of not one, but two crew members, but she contained it rather well while making sure the Mule had enough tampons on it to service an entire fleet of women folk, still not entirely understanding the need but wanting to be helpful anyway.

Outside the freshly docked ship, a bundled man in furs and clearly prepared for the weather stood ready and waiting. The berthing station of the Darling had been updated in Rigg's data pad just moments before they had entered the planet's atmosphere, giving him just enough time to meet them there when they arrived.

The docking bay doors opened and the ramp lowered to allow them to disembark, the dock workers shuffling up toward the waiting crew and heading in to begin the standard refueling process, as well as attempting to add on minor ship repairs and/or other liquid or supply replacements in order to pad the docking fee. "Jus' need yer sig here fer the dockin' agreement, basically sayin' you ain't here ta cause trouble, an' that you agree ta' pay the standard dockin' fee. You can check them boxes there if'n ya want any of tha extra go se, coolant, oil, what have ya. Or you can jus' sign and we'll get outta yer hair," the dock foreman mumbled to the Captain from behind a fuzzy scarf, only his eyes and the tip of his nose visible beneath his winter gear, a pad held out for Barnaby to look over.

Mister Potter stood like a gargoyle about a foot behind Barnaby, his red briefcase held tightly against his chest and a stern look on his face. He was pale, paler than usual, and was now sweating obviously through the neck of his sweater, which poked out from beneath his winter coat. A shaking, skeletal hand rose to smooth out what remained of his hair, his fingers visibly shaking before it returned to grasping the red briefcase's handle for dear life.
CHARACTERS
Charity ~ Melody ~ Tabitha


NARRATION
Darling ~ Iscariot

Barnaby Goodweather

Barnaby, befitted in a well-worn parka and a faux-rabbit fur hat, and a bright green scarf that Tabby had knit him many years ago, descended from the bowels of the Darling to greet the dock crew. He glanced at his away crew to be sure they were all, likewise, safely bedecked with appropriately warm gear. This wasn't going to be a fun trip, but with winter modifications like the top, canvas window covers, and the hover function, they should at least arrive safely, if not comfortably. The dock crew intercepted his one final goodbye hug with Mona, which made his heart ache. But they'd already done their see-ya-laters. Time to move on. Chris was unexpected, he'd been quiet but a hard worker. Spacing ain't for everyone, though, and far as Barnaby knew, the kid had been terrestrial his whole life to now. Best a clean break. He'd get a good recommendation if he asked for it.

He listened patiently as the crew leader gave him the rigmarole. Normally, Barnaby wasn't one to to let these folks upcharge him for the works. He knew that the nickels and dimes were where these folks got their money, but he couldn't afford it every time. And he liked to think that maybe he took good enough care of Darling to not need such things. But this particular berth was on Mr. Potter's dime and, well, when in Rome... "Fill'er up, pal." He said, checking each of the items off with a flourish of the pen. "My... errr... mechanic..." Sh*t. Who was going to supervise maintenance while he was gone for near a week? Sh*t sh*t sh*t. Barnaby tried not to show the distress on his face. A glance at Mr. Potter indicated the man hadn't really noticed, apparently battling his own discomfort. Just what he needed. A sickly elder barking orders with that dog-gumb suitcase of his. Can't even fit a suit in there. Barnaby looked back into the ship to see Rian standing up at the top, watching them.

There was something holding Barnaby back from trusting Rian to run things on either side of this endeavor, he couldn't put his finger on it. Of course he'd known about his brother-in-law's past. Knew it when Rian had met Maya, sister to Barnaby's late wife. Knew it when they got married. Barnaby had known it and helped Rian escape with Maya to build a new life. He'd known it when Maya died and when Rian went hog-wild against his gangster father. All those years in between, Rian on the run getting into trouble and Barnaby often as not bailing the youngster out. And Barnaby knew that having him come be a permanent part of Darling that there was a risk Rian would cause trouble for them. And that trouble hadn't come yet and Barnaby didn't mind if it did- he'd rather face it head on than run - but sure as hell it was coming.

Maybe it was fear that bound Barnaby? Not of Rian - and by extension himself - failing. But of Rian leaving. Anna-Maria had passed. His folks had passed. His brother was gone, probably dead. Gerry had left. Autumn, too. But they'd never loved him. Tamara though... Barnaby tried not to think about Tammy. Crew came and went but this last batch was hitting him harder than most. Would tossing too much responsibility at Rian drive him away? Maybe. But more likely Barnaby saw him leaving on his own accord to "protect" the crew. Maybe that would be for the best, but Barnaby didn't want him to go.

Barnaby didn't know what to do. About any of it. He sighed. "Alright. Gimme a few and I'll get you situated on board." Barnaby pulled his hat from his head and began climbing back up the ramp. "Everybody get loaded up quick-like. We're heading out soon." As the gap closed between him and Rian, Barnaby didn't know what he was going to say. Would he stay and help with maintenance? Send Rian on the expedition? He stopped and took a deep breath, looking at Rian again. This was it. This was the test. If Rian could run things proper while Barnaby was gone then he'd get the job. Maybe. Probably. Barnaby still wasn't sure. Barnaby waved goodbye to Rian and walked over to Mr. Potter. "Grab your bag, Mr. Potter?" Barnaby said, knowing the answer.

"No."

"Thought so. Hop on up into the mule if you don't mind. We'll get shortly." Barnaby loaded himself up into the driver's seat and waited for Mattie, Mr. Arlo, and the Preacher to get on before putting it in gear and heading out into the snow.

Rigger "Riggs" Mirton

May 27, 2020, 01:11:26 am #51 Last Edit: May 27, 2020, 09:19:54 am by Rigger "Riggs" Mirton
Riggs made his way, as best he could through the tumult of wind and sticky snow, to the docks. The Cortex had pinged him a not ten minutes earlier to indicate that the "Darling Francine" was on final approach and would be landing shortly. It gave Riggs just enough time to bundle his meagre belongings in to the old sandy coloured duffle bag, get layered up and out into the streets.

The joy of leaving this rock was intoxicating, to be free of this damned cold meant he covered the distance between the bunkhouse and the docks in under fifteen minutes, but to his surprise there was no ship!
He grabbed for the cortex in his pocket praying he hadn't misread the information and the ship had landed at the other claim, but no, he was in the right place, it was just...and then he heard her.

The storm had masked the sound of her laboured engines as it tried its best to flip her and throw her across the sky. Riggs did his best to repress the grin that spread over his face, fortunately no one could have seen it under the scarf he wore. It was a Scarab class, series 4 by the look of her. Beautiful. Despite the conditions she looked in great shape. Riggs loved this design, he always thought that the name of the class was unkind, people think of scarabs as horrible bugs, to Riggs it looked more like one of those beautiful creatures from 'Earth that was', the one with the velvet like hair and the beak of a duck, the "flatty puss". So when Riggs saw a Scarab Class, he actually saw a great, majestic, Flatty puss.

Whoever was flying knew their stuff too, although the approach was a little wavy he'd seen established pilots do worse in better conditions. He pushed his way through the dockworkers started making his way to the berth the Darling was putting down in when a hand grabbed his arm.

"Where d'you think your goin'?" It was the dock foreman, Riggs had the pleasure of conversing with this charming creature when he'd arrived. "This is my ship chief" he replied, "I'm just going to meet my ship".
"Assuming they want you more that the other one did" he chortled, the remark stung more than the icy wind did. He jerked his arm free and headed to the ship, foreman stepping in behind him.

The ramp lowered and with it a rush of warm air rolled over Riggs. A man walked out to meet the dock foreman, he could hear the irritating local reciting his usual speech, the man replied "Fill'er up, pal. My... errr... mechanic..." and his voice trailed away. He was not what Riggs excepted, he wasn't sure what he expected, but it wasn't him. The captain turned and went back into the ship. Riggs was dragged from his thoughts by a yell, the dock forman was shouting across the dock, "Well? You  getting on? Or have they changed their minds already?" a series of muffled guffaws around him and the rising embarrassment was all he needed and he put his foot on the plate steel ramp.

At that moment, the mule pulled out of the cargo hold and shot into the snow. Riggs, watched as it disappeared into the crowd.

"Hi, I'm Riggs, I sent you a wave 'bout the mechanics position"
he said to no one in particular. Wondering what he should do next. "Well this coulda gone better"



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