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Oct 23, 2007 Ista Tolanna link
Ista Tolanna stood in the hanger holding a box, containing all she owned in the world outside of her atlas. Word had reacher her within minutes of her docking that the commander wanted to see her, just a few minutes after that she was emptying out her locker and desk into a box, watched by an armed escort, keeping her head down so he wouldn't see the tears. That was bad enough, but now she was back in the dock looking at her ship in disbelief. 'Got to give them credit for working so fast' she thought. On her beautiful white paint was sprawled "bitch" in red three-foot high letters across the port side, and "pig" across the bow.

She put the box inside and went to the wall com to call a friend, a person in clm who treated everyone with respect. She put in her ID and punched the channel for LNH, but her ID had been blocked from the com already.

Back in her ship she closed the hatch behind her, sat down in the cool cargo hold and stared at nothing for what seemed like forever. Her meditation was broken by a pounding on the hull. She stood and looked out the hatch window. It was her escort who had at last decided to speak when he said "you're supposed to leave now."

She grabbed a rag and a can of cleaning solvent, stepped outside, defying her escort, and started rubbing at the red paint that fouled her ship's appearence and her mood even further.

The escort stood there for a while and eventually left the dock. After a while Ista realized that the paint was not letting go and she stopped. Figuring she could wash or repaint in any of a number of stations, she decided it was time to go.
Oct 26, 2007 Ista Tolanna link
Ista Tolanna's atlas was drifting in Sedina far from any gravity well, she was spending some time on the com trying to locate Death Incarnate with no success. He had made a bet with her and lost, but refused to pay. She wanted the money as a matter of princaple as well as so she could dock and eat. He had refused to deposit his wager with a neutral party prior to their duel, saying it was a matter of honor. She now understood that it was a matter of no honor.

She was wondering if she should approach his guild when the com sounded, startling her with the first incomming call since she had left...

"Ista here"

"Hey Ista, just heard about your 'departure' from clm, I hope there are no hard feeling between us."

"Hi LNH, I'm not angry anymore, and I wasn't angry with you anyway. You weren't part of the problem. In fact you were always good to me, remember you were the one who offered to show me some fighting techniques. It's not your fault I stink at them, I need more practice."

"Ha well yea some practice might help..."

"indeed!" Ista laughed, and smiled for the first time in days.

"Is it true, ah I heard this somewhere, that you have been invited back?"

"I'm not really sure" Ista said slowly "It was implied that I could ask to be readmitted in the future, but I'm not sure how that would be received."

"Well, will you?"

"I don't know, I need some time to figure out how I feel about the whole thing."

LNH decided to change the subject "I heard about your wager with, and defeat of Death Incarnate and that you've been trying to locate him. I don't think he'll pay up though, even if you find him. How much does he owe you?"

"That could be true, the boy seems to have no honor at all. He owes me 5 million credits. I have witnesses to the whole conversation in case anyone doubts me. Hey, my sensors show a moth in the area, gotta run to bring home the synthetic bacon. Bye"

"Bye" said LNH "See you around..."

Ista Tolanna turned the ship towards the asteroids and hit the turbo. Focus returned and, for the time being, forgot about life's little problems...
Nov 06, 2007 Ista Tolanna link
Ista Tolanna's atlas was stationary between two small asteroids near a Latos wormhole. It had been a few weeks since she became guildless and she found her routine was settling down. The hazing by some of her former guildmates seemed to be done with, and she was recently able to afford a nice paint job on the altas, basicly white with black highlights which covered the red nicely.

She saw com activity from MysticRogue which reminded her of something, so she switched on the transmitter...

"Anyone seen Death Incarnate lately?"

"He hasn't been seen for about two weeks" came the reply.

"Lying cheating coward still owes me money" Ista said, but knew that even if he heard this exchange while traveling under a new name he wasn't quite dumb enough to reveal himself.

The proximity alarm sounded as a ship she did not recognize jumped in among the asteroids. Checking the ship registry she determined that it was a new pilot, probably near broke and not much worth any effort. Instead of starting the engines she simply sent her demand for payment. The new ship turned and ran back the way it came, she hoped the pilot would not be dumb enough to remain in grey space.

A while later the same ship returned. Assuming that her warning didn't carry the weight it used to while a member of clm, she hit the throttle and chased the vessle toward the wormhole. Knowing that many new pilots were relatively broke, she decided to demand only 1k, and sent the demand. She waited to see if he would stop, but when she saw the warp field open she took him out.

No cargo recovered but no missles to replace, Ista let her craft drift away from the sector center, wrote her log entries, and retired for the night.
Nov 06, 2007 epadafunk link
isn't it really discouraging when no one replys to your rp threads?
Nov 06, 2007 Ronius link
I read this thread and like it alot. Keep writing it. i wanna see what happens. :)

Nov 07, 2007 Obsidian link
Sounds like Ista is in for some lonely nights. I hope she can find a place where she is welcomed. I'll look for future installments.
Nov 07, 2007 JestatisBess link
Ista Tolanna: you are a fine pilot. I would be honored to have you in ONE1 till you find your true guild :)
Nov 08, 2007 RelayeR link
Keep it up Ista... It's an excellent read!
Dec 18, 2007 Ista Tolanna link
She held the paper in her hand and read it again. Ista didn't normally print messages but she was going to keep this one because it meant something

"..and I think you'd make a fine addition to the membership of SYN..."

She didn't receive a lot of compliments these days, this one felt good. She read it again and decided to file it before losing her grip.

She wanted to join. This was not a message from the commander or a LT but someone on the council who she didn't think would say something he couldn't follow through on. Just the same...

It is the guild Death Incarnate belongs to. She wondered how the membership would feel about her determination to collect the 5 mil he wagered and wouldn't pay. Should she ask outright if they would interfere or expect her to give it up?

Also how did she know she wouldn't have the same problems in SYN that she had in CLM? She knew she would honor the confidentiality of information she possessed from those days. She wondered if anyone knew how seriously she felt about such agreements.

Too much to think about. She climbed into the pilot's seat of her atlas and set up a jump to Latos O-12. On entry her instruments showed two vipers, both within 2k meters. She locked the turbo and ignored the abuse hurled at her from those light ships with high energy drain while setting a course they could not follow. She knew she couldn't beat them both and nothing they said would compel her to stay. Even if she could beat them they would have nothing of value and she would have repair bills she could not pay. She thought at least if nothing else, her survival skills still worked well enough.
Dec 18, 2007 toshiro link
Yes, it's enjoyable to read. More, please. :3
Dec 19, 2007 Phaserlight link
Good story.
Dec 19, 2007 Ronius link
Dec 26, 2007 Death Fluffy link
Patiently waiting for more.
Ahem. I SAID "Patiently waiting for MORE"

<not so patiently waiting>
Jan 02, 2008 Ista Tolanna link
She used the printer a second time in as many weeks. This time the message was from Kragmier, a powerful member of The Syndicate. She couldn't believe she received a message directly from him. She had passed his ship at a distance once or twice before but they had only exchanged brief greetings.

"...your interest in our organization has been noticed. You have been recommended by one council member, but that is not enough. We need to asses your skills at the very least. We will be in touch. In the mean time you may want to spend more time in Odia..."

She filed the message and thought about it's meaning. She wondered why she was being directed to Odia. Latos and Ukari had been her hunting ground since leaving CLM. She decided that she should take the suggestion seriously and spend some time learning the territory in Odia.


Two days later reports arrived at SYN offices of slightly elevated pirate activity in Odia. Kragmier wondered if it could be the CLM washout someone suggested they may want to check out. He remembered sending her a message a week ago and then the orders he sent to an operative shortly after that to watch for her. This would be just a standard evaluation to start with.
Jan 12, 2008 Death Fluffy link
Patiently waiting for more.
Ahem. I SAID "Patiently waiting for MORE"

<not so patiently waiting>
Mar 03, 2020 incarnate link
Reviving the thread, at the behest of Ista Tolanna.
Mar 03, 2020 xDraenoRx link
After 11 years????
Mar 04, 2020 Bobsin link
We honor the past by reviving long forgotten ghosts and sharing lessons we learned Drae.

Thanks for the late night story Ista.

Mar 05, 2020 Ista Tolanna link
The light was so bright it hurt, it's supposed to be kept low when coming out of cryo. Looking at her wrist chronometer which turned out to be much brighter that the room light, she realized it was her eyes and not the room lights that were out of calibration.

It was a familiar yet still surprisingly bad feeling in her gut, this being the second time she decided to jump a few years ahead via cryo when the verse got a little crazy. People with families didn't do this sort of thing. 'Lucky me' she thought to herself.

The tech told her she had been in stasis for over ten years, not bothering to look at the dates in her file to give her an exact accounting of the time that passed when she was revived. A splitting headache convinced her to not try math right now, it could wait.

"Only ten? I paid for 30!" was her response.

"Rates changed a couple of years after you went in, you're meter is up, we need the pod" was the only explanation.

She bought 30 years hoping all her enemies would be dead when she came out. She really needed a fresh start. She realized she was not winning the fight for survival, so thought she would change the playing field.

It took her a few hours to be physically ready and to be mentally hardened enough to go to a network terminal and start looking up names. Some encouragement, a lot of her competitors were dead or missing for years. But some were still known to be alive. Some of the pirate guilds she had belonged to or competed with had fallen on hard times and were not much of a threat anymore, but some new guilds emerged.

Once that research was done she looked up the nationalist guilds, mostly out of curiosity since she didn't do any real amount of business with them. She was suprized to see that the Serco nationalists were either gone or has become rogue actors or pirates. She wasn't expecting competition from that corner, but whatever. The Itani nationalists seem to still be there although a much smaller force.

Then came time to look up the sheep, otherwise known as the trade guilds. She mostly found new guilds of unknown size and activity, but was happy to see that TGFT was still dominant. She hoped that they still didn't spend any effort defending themselves and just paid up. She agreed with that philosophy if you could call it that. It's better for all parties involved.

The best revelation came last, she realized that there was almost no mention of the Vipers. They were a big thorn in her side and a reason she had decided to disappear. Not the main reason but definitely a reason.

All in all she was satisfied with the current situation, which was a good thing because she didn't have the resources for more cryo, just enough cash for maybe a refit, food, fuel, ammo, and some updated charts to get her started again.

She wobbled down to the station's communication nexus and paid the surprisingly high fee to send an encoded subspace signal. Then she just had to find a place to wait. The signal would reach her ship and it would start the journey back from deep out in the sector. It would take time. She had time. Nobody was looking for her yet.
Mar 05, 2020 xDraenoRx link
More please.