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Jonathan Wark
Xerxes Enterprises
Posted - 2006.03.22 01:37:00 - [1]

Edited by: Jonathan Wark on 23/03/2006 04:49:35
Part - 1

An acrid mist hung in the air as chemicals from the production line spilled over onto the overheated decking. Workers, drenched in sweat, struggled desperately to suck in as much air as they could through their largely ineffective respirators, all the time their eyes and skin were subjected to a relentless bath of god knew what.

From the safety of the glass enclosed observation platform I could see people, mostly Minmatar, struggling simply to keep moving. My cybernetic enhanced vision narrowed in on one specific worker, a woman.
I couldn’t even guess her age but likely she was no more than twenty. Her skin looked like tanned leather except for the spots that had erupted in open sores. I watched as she plodded forward then suddenly, without any warning she simply collapsed onto the decking.

I’m not sure how long I stood there, but someone talking at my side finally jogged my attention away from the Dante’s inferno before me.

“So as you can see my lord, we are rightfully proud of our production record. As I was explaining earlier your holdings are the most cost effective in the sector. Leave it to a Caldari to recognize a good business opportunity like this.”

I turned my attention towards the tall Amarr production manager. He had introduced himself as Malk Davila, a distant relative of some small and obscure Noble family. I smiled as I answered, “Indeed Malk your production figures are quite impressive. However I was wondering if you had done any time studies with an eye towards introducing more robotics into the line?”

Malk scratched his chin in a thoughtful way before answering, ‘Well my Lord, Wark.”

“Please call me Jonathan” I interrupted him

Malk’s face lit up with pride, “As you wish Jonathan. Well to be honest we did do one time study and while the cost was reduced a bit the overall quality of the product suffered. We have always worked from a standpoint of providing a great product for a reasonable cost. Perhaps you can buy it cheaper but you can’t get a better value than what we offer.”

I nodded, “I see. Very commendable. But what is the loss rate on the workforce?”

Malk thought for a moment, this was obviously not a question that was asked very often. “Well I admit we are on the high end of the average slave loss rate but nothing alarming, Jonathan.”

I heard a slight gasp from the observation window and turned back to where Tom was still watching the production line. I followed his gaze and noticed the woman who had fallen earlier being placed on a cart piled high with other dead bodies.

I turned back to face Malk the smile still on my face as I spoke. “Shut down the line.”

Malk looked like someone had just hit him with a brick. “What? Jonathan … NO. If we shut the line down we will be putting a dozen, perhaps more, Amarr out of work. And that’s not even counting the various companies that support our production.”

The whine of a charging capacitor lasted only a second before the weapon discharged. Malk slumped lifeless to the floor and I turned to the plant assistant manager. “You are now promoted to manager. Shut down the production immediately.”

There was only a moment of stunned hesitation but without any further comment the new plant manager started issuing commands over his NeoCom.

The Fated
Posted - 2006.03.22 17:32:00 - [2]

Quite good, although Nobel is probably meant to be Noble.. unless you are talking about the Norwegian inventor Razz

Jonathan Wark
Xerxes Enterprises
Posted - 2006.03.23 04:45:00 - [3]

Yukio Araki
Ministry of War
Posted - 2006.03.23 04:48:00 - [4]

Part - 2

I walked back over to the observation window, and stood next to Tom. I could see workers looking up at me as the shut down orders were passed around. “I want the production floor vented of all toxic gasses and the temperature stabilized.” I ordered.

“This will take five minutes my lord.” Came the answer

I gritted my teeth at the response. “You have three to get it done. I suggest you do your best if you do not wish to loose… Your new position.”

From the other side of the room came a familiar voice “Orders Captain?”

I sighed but kept my composure, “I want medical and Haz Mat teams in here today Ratour, please see to it personally.”

“As you wish Captain.” Ratour answered as he turned to go.

From behind me I heard the voice of the new manager, ‘The production floor temperature has been stabilized and the gasses vented, my lord.”

“Open this window” I ordered.

“I’m sorry My Lord this window is sealed” he answered.

I pulled out the hand laser and pointed it at the window while it charged. As the window shattered from the energy burst, I heard gasps from the production floor. I walked over to Malk’s lifeless body and easily hefted it up and tossed it out the opening I had made. There was stunned silence.

“I…. am the new plant owner, Jonathan Wark. I want you all to take a good look at this man. This, was the previous plant manager.” My voice carried throughout the plant but I could still see fear and doubt on the faces of the workers.

“He refused a direct order from me. I will not tolerate this from an employee and I will not tolerate it from a slave” I paused and looked over the uncertain faces of the people below before continuing.

“Today there will be doctors here to examine you all and see to your health needs. You WILL bring in bring your families to have them checked as well.”

There was an odd undertone of people whispering as they started to digest what I was saying.

“This plant will NOT resume production until it has been upgraded and all workers are outfitted with the proper hazardous material suits, however you will continue to receive food and lodging as well as improved care during the retooling period.”

The whispering had risen in tone now and I needed to speak louder.

“In addition to the improved working conditions and health care, I will be opening a temple. This will be done in order to begin your long overdue religious education, and it is mandatory that you all attend services. The priests will keep me informed about those of you that make the most progress in the faith. Those that show particular promise will be rewarded accordingly.

A tension ran through the factory like a taught bowstring. Then unexpectedly a voice broke the silence like a stone tossed into calm waters. “Why should we learn the Amarr religion? What good is it to a slave?”

So the reports I had gotten were true, there had been a slave revolt brewing in the factory. The man that spoke up would surely be their leader. I looked down from the gaping hole in the observation platform and scanned the crowd but no one stood out.

The drop was about twenty feet to the decking below on the production floor, and I took the fast way down. The landing jolted me a bit more than I thought it would. “Your getting to old for this **** Jonathan.” I thought to myself ruefully.

My enhanced hearing caught the sound of a Blaster safety being released from above and I smiled knowing Tom was ready to fire if he thought I was in trouble.

I scanned the crowd of rag tag workers while my voice resounded off the now silent production equipment. “Who spoke just now? Step forward if you are not a cowered!”

There was a lull in the murmuring of the crowd then someone started pushing through the crowed towards the front. He was a young Brutor, muscular even for his race. His eyes held a fire that was obviously unquenched by his servitude, and his stance echoed the invulnerability of youth. I tried to remember when I had had such youthful convection and realized again just how long ago that had been.

There was no hesitation in his voice as he spoke, “I…Verly Gastelum of the Brutor Tribe spoke. I am no coward and I do not fear a slave master such as you.”

I nodded to him, nothing more than a slight inclination of my head but it appeared to perplex him somewhat. I took out my hand laser and there was a sudden gasp from the crowd but Verly stood unflinching. I stepped up to him. “Well met Verly. You have some raw courage I see but there is much you lack.”

He stiffened at the praise coupled with a rebuke but said nothing. I smiled and looked at the hand Laser. I flipped it around and held it out to him. “Take it.” I said

He didn’t react, likely unsure of what was to come. “TAKE IT!” I shouted.

He reached out and took the weapon but I grabbed his hand and shoved the barrel against my chest. “FIRE!” I screamed into his face.

Yukio Araki
Ministry of War
Posted - 2006.03.23 04:48:00 - [5]

Everyone’s eyes were on the scene playing out in front of them. Like a train wreck it was terrible but they simply couldn’t look away.

Verly’s eyes had gone wide and sweat beaded on his forehead but still he didn’t fire. I reached up with my free hand and slapped him across the face “FIRE DAMN IT! FIRE OR I WILL KILL YOU WHERE YOU STAND!”

I watched as his hand shook and his muscles tensed. Then there was a soft “Click” as he pulled the trigger. I took the weapon from his loose grasp and slipped it back into my holster. I smiled warmly as I spoke to him “Yes there is much you lack but mostly you lack knowledge. Just like you lack the knowledge that you must charge a hand laser before you fire it, you also lack knowledge about God.”

I stepped back and addressed the crowd “I ask you to learn, to seek the truth with an open heart and an open mind. Do this and you will be treated well, this is my promise to you all.”

I looked back at Verly and he appeared to break out of his stupor. To my surprise he dropped to his knees in front of me and grabbed my robe “My Lord, take me with you. Let me be your servant and learn the ways of the Amarr religion directly from you” he pleaded.

I grabbed his arm and raised him to his feet. “I am no theologian, and I have no time to be a teacher to a young boy such as you, Verly”

His jaw set and he had a serious tone in his voice as he answered “if you do not take me as your personal servant then I will end my life. Perhaps not today, but I will find a way”

I was about to reply but a voice from behind me interrupted, “Jonathan!”

I turned around. Tom was standing there with a look in his eyes that needed no charging to be deadly. “A quick word with you please Captain Wark.” He said in a low tone.

Jerek Laz
PIE Inc.
Posted - 2006.03.23 14:24:00 - [6]

Cowered = Coward.

Other than that, so far DAMN good :) I like this Caldari's approach ;)

Yukio Araki
Ministry of War
Posted - 2006.03.24 02:38:00 - [7]

Part – 3

Tom nodded his head in the direction of the observation platform “Jonathan…. There are some…. Gentlemen here to speak with you”

I looked up and noticed the security detail speaking franticly with the “New” plant manager. “Tom, bring our guest from the ship and meet me in the observation room.”

As Tom turned and disappeared through the hatch leading to the docking bay, I turned towards the lift that would take me back up to the observation room. Before I took a single step Verly garbed my robe.

“My lord, don’t go back up there.” He pleaded “You killed an Amarrian free holder, they will execute you on the spot.”

Even though I pulled my punch the backhand staggered the young Brutor a bit. I could see confusion in his eyes as well as anger. “If you truly wish to be my personal servant and learn of the Amarr religion, you will keep you place. Wait here and do nothing is that clear?”

To his credit Verly regained his composure quickly and answered with a bow, “As you say my Lord.”

I smiled. Perhaps this one had some merit after all. It appeared I would be stuck with him regardless.

As the lift door opened I could see the room was filled with security agents with weapons at the ready. As I stepped into the room the production manager pointed in my direction “That’s him. He’s the one that murdered Lord Davila”

I scanned the room and finally identified who was in charge. “You only brought twenty security officers with you Sergeant?" I asked. "I’m insulted.”

The Sergeant looked like a veteran of many a skirmish and while he didn’t appear to be intimidated he also didn’t look like he would underestimate me. “Well Captain Wark, you know how it is these days. It’s so difficult to get good help. Now if you would be so kind as to remove any weapons you have on you we can get this done with quickly.”

I reached under my robe and I heard the safeties of the weapons pointed at me released.

The Sergeant smiled “Slowly Captain, very slowly. My men are a little green and I wouldn’t want any accidents. Place your weapon on the table there.”

I chuckled a bit before answering “Sergeant this may take a few minuets as I have more than one weapon.”

Finally all the weapons were on the table. Two full size laser pistols, two single shot laser derringers, A full size Caldari High Tech hand blaster, both of my bowie knives, and last but not least my four braces of throwing knives.

The Sergeant arched his eyebrow at the hardware. ‘What no rocket launcher?”

I grinned “Rocket Launchers are so insurgent. I almost never carry one.”

His face turned grim at that point “Fine, then lets get this done with shall we? Jonathan Wark you are accused of the murder of an Amarrian Free Holder, one ‘Malk Davila’. I am placing you under arrest for that Murder. You will be held for trial and execution, god have mercy on your soul.”

The Door behind me slid open and all eyes in the room turned towards the lift.

His voice was gravelly but held a tone of someone used to being obeyed. “Indeed Sergeant, God is exactly what brings Captain Wark here today. Put down your weapons they are not required or welcome.”

Jonathan Wark
Xerxes Enterprises
Posted - 2006.03.24 02:41:00 - [8]

Edited by: Jonathan Wark on 24/03/2006 02:41:11
Several times now I have tried to post with my main character Jonathan. I think I know what happened though. As I did a preview it reverted back to my Alt. Yes like most of you I made up a Kanid Alt just for the heck of it. It is me though. Thank you for you kind words and spell check I do appreciate both. One more chapter after this one.

Jonathan Wark
Xerxes Enterprises
Posted - 2006.03.28 02:00:00 - [9]

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2006 11:59 pm Post subject:


Part - 4

The door request sounded. I looked over towards Verly but he had fallen asleep while studying the simple reading book, I had given him. Sighing I went to the door myself.

As the hatch slid aside I was rather shocked to see Bishop Arayz standing there with his enigmatic expression. “You Grace.” I said while bowing, “How may I serve?”

“Well first you can invite me in, and not leave me standing outside your quarters.” He answered flatly.

I backed up and motioned him inside. “Of course your grace, forgive this unworthy one.”

The Bishop looked around my quarters, The Freighter was slow but it did have a lot of spacious rooms. His eyes caught site of Verley and he paused for a moment, “Humph! That one is trouble Captain, mark my words.”

I motioned towards the couches on the other side of the room “It would do me great honor if you would have a seat. May I offer you some refreshment your grace?”

Arayz moved towards the couch and settled into it like a vulture lighting on its prey. “No Wark I’ve come to talk not for hordeurvs and A drink! Besides I HATE sushi, and I detest Sake.”

I smiled modestly “Indeed Your Grace so I was informed. This is why I stocked up on Regioun Spiced Wine. However if you would rather not…”

His voice didn’t vary in pitch or tone as he answered “Damnable Caldari, Get me some wine then.”

I wasn’t sure exactly how angry he was with me at this point. I couldn’t read his expression at all, and decided he would be a tough opponent at the card tables. I poured him a glass of spiced wine and set it on the side table for him. I stepped back and watched as he sipped at his favorite wine, hopping it might lighten his mood.

After a few moments I spoke up again “Now your grace, how may I serve?”

He looked at me with an unblinking gaze “Well then I’ll say what I’ve come to say. The church would like to extend it’s thanks to you for undertaking the execution of the heretic Malk Davila. Further, as a sign of our gratitude I would like to offer you this small sum in compensation.” Bishop Arays pulled out a small data pad and handed it to me.

A nice six-figure sum flashed across the screen. I bowed again “Your Grace is too kind. I would however like to donate these funds to the church.”

He took the data pad back and slid it beneath his robes ‘As you like Wark.”

He took another sip of wine “One thing I’m curious about Wark, why did you go to such great lengths with this assignment? In the past you have been strait-forward in your approach. What made you buy the production facility and start religious education for your newly acquired slaves?”

“I…” I hesitated for a moment as I remembered exactly who I was talking to. “I had a vision… Your Grace.”

The Bishop put his wineglass down and leaned forward “What sort of vision, Captain? Describe it to me.”

“It was when I was meditating Your Grace. I saw a field of flowers and in the middle of the field a man stood with a scythe. He was harvesting the flowers and placing them on a cart. Suddenly his scythe hit a rock and dulled the blade so that he could harvest no more. As he wandered off to another field I could see the remaining flowers start to wither for lack of light and care.”

Yukio Araki
Ministry of War
Posted - 2006.03.28 02:00:00 - [10]

Edited by: Yukio Araki on 28/03/2006 02:00:36

Jonathan Wark
Xerxes Enterprises
Posted - 2006.03.28 02:01:00 - [11]

Bishop Arayz had risen and was standing next to me. “Captain?”

I turned back to the Bishop, trying to shake the memory of the vision from my mind.

“I think it best you don’t repeat your ‘Vision’ to anyone else” he said solemnly.

I Nodded “Yes Your Grace I believe that is indeed wise.”

He smiled for the first time “I think in the future if anyone should ask again perhaps you should say simply ‘It was a Good investment.’ That sounds much more in line with Caldari thinking I would say.”

I couldn’t help laughing “As you say your grace so shall I do.”

couger malthas
Violent Purge PLC
Posted - 2006.04.06 05:11:00 - [12]

jon-o i dont know how you do it but you make one of the best storys out there next to grealyn and pulgor.


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