Author Topic: Grymn Fluff - Eastward Endeavours Finished  (Read 16871 times)

Offline Inso

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 29
« Reply #50 on: August 15, 2012, 11:37:55 AM »
Sven could hear the whispers of a thousand voices. They echoed through his mind like the sounds of long dead ghosts waxing lyrical about the lives they once lived. Visions of the deserts of Porphys ebbed and flowed through his mind and he saw nine glittering jewels as they rose up from the sand and collided to form a single, large, bright, star. Letters from a long dead language flashed across the sky and spelled out Iddare before exploding into fireworks and falling to die on the sand below. Sven heard the rattling of bones and the sound of the dead being trampled under the boots of an army and witnessed a world of flame… then ice.

Then all was black and the remainder of his night was free from dreams.

After spending nearly two hours; swimming with Maria amongst all of the paying passengers, Sven managed to extract her from the pool and take her to the digi-plex. They watched a film about the brave defence of an out-numbered force of ancient knights. Maria sat and stared, open mouthed, at the screen whilst she ate her snack and when the time to leave arrived, she remained seated until everyone else had left.
“That was brilliant!” said Maria when they left the digi-plex “are all films like that?”
“There are all sorts of films… why?” asked Sven.
“I’ve never seen one before” said Maria. Sven stopped abruptly and looked at her for a moment.
“You and me need to have a long, painful chat about where you live and how you were brought up” said Sven “let’s go and find somewhere quiet… we’ll get some food and drinks on the way.”

After a couple of hours, Sven sat shell-shocked by what Maria had told him. Her father ruled the roost, her mother was abused, she lived in fear for both her and her mother’s life and when she wasn’t being tutored by her governess, she lived in her room; even taking meals there. She never went on holidays or spent time with her parents and the way she had been treated went some way to explaining how she reacted when she was told her parents had died.
“Is there anything you need to collect from your home?” asked Sven “keep-sakes or toys or anything?”
“No” replied Maria “I have nothing to collect.”
“Not even a soft toy to sleep with?” asked Sven.
“I don’t have one” replied Maria.
“Do you ever want to go back there?” asked Sven.
“No” replied Maria.
“Then you’ll never have to” said Sven “I’ll get the guild to market the place, take what they are owed and invest the rest for you.”
“Thank you, daddy” replied Maria with a smile.
“When I was a child, I had a friend called Orgus” said Sven “he was a soft toy that looked like a big, fat, human with fur all over it and big floppy ears. I used to talk to him when I went to bed and he kept me company at night. Let’s go and find something like that for you.”
When they returned to their cabin that evening, Maria had a selection of toys and in particular a soft toy that was barely big enough to cover the palm of her hand. When Sven asked her why she had chosen something so small, she replied that it could fit in her pocket and go everywhere with her.
“I am not going to leave you at home” said Sven “you’ll join me on any ship I work on. I’ll teach you how to fix things and cover your schooling myself. We are going to see the universe together… as daddy and daughter. You will never be alone again.”
“Thank you, daddy” said Maria and she hugged him tightly.
“You’ve earned it” replied Sven.

Sven sat at the comms panel and sent a message to Thorred aboard The Obituary. He waited for a few minutes before sending a message to the guild and then sat back and pondered everything. As soon as he closed his eyes he saw Tulley’s face smiling at him. He remembered how beautiful she was and how much he missed her. He opened his eyes and removed the pink back-pack from his cupboard and opened it. Inside were a collection of items of no use at all but they were treasures none the less. Various hand sewn patches, some name tags, a lock of hair, some ridiculous, plastic jewellery, a couple of beaded hair ties and a few small samples of fabric that had come from some of Tulley’s more adventurous skirts and dresses. He had no need for pictures. Her face was etched on his mind in the many data files that dwelt there. Just as he was about to allow himself to muse further, the comms lit up.
“Sven?” said Thorred “Sven? Are you there?”
“Yes brother” replied Sven as he turned to face the screen.
“It is great to see you! How are you? How is Tulley?” said Thorred.
“Tulley has died” said Sven.
There was silence before Thorred said “I am truly sorry, brother…”
“She died at my hands” said Sven “I allowed our happiness to cloud my judgement and was betrayed by my foolishness.”
“What happened?” asked Thorred.
Sven explained about Maria and how the marriage took place. He told him about Septus and his comments. He told him how he reacted and what new responsibilities he had. He told him where The Starfield was headed and what his plans were when he got there. Sven also told Thorred to inform Drackus of what had happened and tell him how terribly sorry he was about Tulley.
“Fething heck, brother” said Thorred after a pause “you get some trash thrown at you, don’t you?”
“I wish you were here with me” replied Sven and he looked glumly at the floor.
“You aren’t alone, mate” said Thorred “I’ll meet you at Bloor.”
The screen went blank and a light began to flash. Sven pressed it.
“Master Sven, the guild approves of your reasoning and has processed the sale. All funds have been collected and divided as agreed. The account details will be forwarded to you on your guild address” said the guildsman “it is regrettable that The Cheerful Drake has been destroyed and the guild extends its condolences for your loss. Your application for a ship has been approved and Metal Fish will be available for you to collect at Bloor in three weeks. The application for housing on Trillian has been withdrawn as requested.”
“Thank you” replied Sven and the screen went black.
“Metal Fish?” thought Sven “it doesn’t sound very exciting… but how exciting does a freighter have to be?”

The remaining time aboard The Starfield was one of relative happiness. During the days, Sven and Maria were inseparable but as soon as he was alone, Sven thought of Tulley and dwelled on her pretty face and her mannerisms and the way she used to tell him off. He remembered the last words Septus had said before he got Sven and Tulley to hold hands and knew that Septus had planned to remove Sven’s distraction… to get rid of Tulley… and what better way than to infect her with Sven’s blood. There were also times when Sven powered down and whenever he did, the whispered voices started and they continuously made reference to the tears of Porphys and Iddare.

“Thank you for your sincere and welcome hospitality” said Sven as he shook the captain’s hand earnestly “If you have need of engineers in a year or so, I would consider it an honour to be employed aboard your fine ship.”
“Mr Taters, your generous compliments are accepted with a happy heart” replied the captain who was blushing slightly “it was my honour to have you aboard.”
After a few more pleasantries Sven and Maria left the vessel and walked across the space dock terminal in search of a hotel to stay in. They had got half way across the courtyard when Sven heard someone shout.
“SVEN!” came the voice and when he turned around he saw Drackus storming towards him with Thorred in tow.
Sven stopped and faced Drackus as he approached. When Drackus reached him, he struck Sven in the face as hard as he possibly could and Sven fell backwards onto the floor. Drackus leapt on top of him and held his throat as he punched him again and again.
“YOU KILLED MY TULLEY!” screamed Drackus.
Sven just lay there and let Drackus hit him until he ran out of steam. Two security guards approached but were directed away by Thorred and Sally; who had just arrived.
“You killed my Tulley” said Drackus quietly as he gathered his wits and climbed off Sven. Maria just stood and watched impassively before she said “have you finished hitting daddy now?”
Sven sat up and got to his feet before saying “don’t worry Maria, I had it coming.”
“Daddy?” asked Drackus as he studied Maria for any signs that she may have come from Tulley… even if it would have been incredible to say the least.
“All I can say, Drackus, is that I would have swapped places with Tulley if I could have” said Sven “I loved her with everything I had.”
“Daddy?” repeated Drackus.
“Tulley and I adopted Maria before we were parted” replied Sven.
“Yes” said Maria “Sven is my daddy now so I don’t want you to hit him any more.”
“I am sorry… Maria… I didn’t know you were his daughter” said Drackus “you are a human, after all.”
“Well he is my daddy now so you better not hit him again” said Maria and she stood upright and crossed her arms in a forthright manner.
“I won’t, young lady” replied Drackus “You will both stay on my ship for the night… as my guests.”
“Are you sure, Drackus?” asked Sven.
“Yes” replied Drackus and he turned on his heels and quickly strolled off.
“It is good to see you, brother” said Thorred as he threw his arms around Sven and hugged him warmly. Sven returned the gesture and explained to Maria who Thorred and Sally were. When Sally put his hand out to shake her hand, Maria’s eyes were so wide they almost popped but she bravely shook Sally’s hand gently. They all made their way to the docking berth where The Obituary was and almost as soon as Sven had topped the ramp, Jela leapt on him and he had to magnetise his feet to remain upright.
“You poor thing!” was all she say through floods of tears. Once Thorred had managed to prise his wife from Sven, the rest of the crew appeared and welcomed him and his new daughter aboard. Once the welcomes were finished, Sally ushered everyone to the lounge where Drackus and Chook were waiting. When Maria saw Chook she looked terrified and eyed him with huge suspicion until he spoke to her and reassured her that he was an honourable lizard who wouldn’t eat her… unless she was very naughty, of course.
“Sig, let’s have some drinks and snacks… we have a lot to discuss” said Drackus.
Sally went to the bar with Sig and a few moments later returned with two fruit drinks. He handed one to Maria and said “not only does this taste fantastic but it helps you to grow big and strong.” Maria looked him up and down and took a sip before returning his broad smile.
Drinks were served and everyone took a seat. Sven looked around the room and there was only one face he didn’t recognise; a human male with a bright orange beard and bald head. He was called Frank and was the new engineer.
“Right then” said Drackus and everyone was quiet “Sven, start from the top and tell me everything.”

Sven told Drackus of the guild and the way he had been recruited. He told him of the ship and the missions. He told him about the crew and after all that, he told him about the events that led to Tulley’s death and his current situation. He even told Drackus of how the crew died at his hands. Throughout his recollections, the rest of the crew remained silent and Drackus just sat and stared at Sven whilst resting his chin on his linked fingers.

“That is everything?” asked Drackus “with no omissions?”
“Yes, captain” replied Sven.
“And Septus managed to cut your palm and mingle your… vital fluid… with Tulley’s blood?” asked Drackus “and it was poison to her?”
“Yes, captain” replied Sven sadly; his gaze dropping to the table in front of him.
Drackus paused for a long time and sipped from his glass of cognac before saying “it wasn’t your fault.”
“Pardon?” asked Sven.
“It was my fault. I knew Septus and encouraged him to employ you both” said Drackus “I believed him to be trustworthy but his obsession with the guild had obviously become too much for him to sensibly cope with.”
“You knew Septus?” asked Sven.
“You didn’t find it odd that you were so quickly accepted aboard a ship of that type?” asked Drackus “of course I knew Septus. I had no idea of what he had become… he was always a stalwart ally to me and my crew.”
Sven was silent.
“So what now?” asked Thorred “can he return to the ship, captain?”
“I’m afraid not” replied Drackus.
“But he’s been straight with you… why can’t he return?”
“I doubt very much if he would want to return… and he still broke an oath with me and my decision stands” replied Drackus.
“But…” began Thorred before Sven said “he’s right. I could never return to this ship as a crewman. Every bolt and every panel would remind me of my Tulley. Did you know that she signed her repairs with a pen?”
“Ohhh Sven!” said Jela who had promptly began to cry in sympathy with him.
“Please don’t” said Sven “I don’t deserve your tears. The captain is right… I broke an oath and he is bound by the covenant to stand by his oath as well. Plus I have a ship of my own now so I will have somewhere to dwell with my daughter.”
“We will remain at Bloor until your new vessel arrives and you will be welcome as guests” said Drackus “I commend your honesty and am sure that we share an equal pain for the loss of our beloved Tulley. Tomorrow we will convene a wake in the lounge at 19:00 hours in honour of our fallen daughter, partner and friend; Tulley.”
“Excuse me” said Drackus and he left the lounge with Valerie following closely behind.
Everyone watched them leave and sat in silence for a moment before Sig said “what we need is some music.” He went to the bar, leaned over it and pulled out his squeeze box “tomorrow we weep but tonight we make merry.”
The ice was broken and Frank walked over to Sven and offered his hand. Sven shook it.
“You ran a fine section” said Frank.
“Oh no… that wasn’t me. I did as I was told” said Sven “Tulley was the boss.”
“Then credit goes to her then” said Frank “I have never seen such ingenuity where repairs have been done.”
“She was a marvel” replied Sven.
“Do you drink?” asked Frank “I’ll get you what you want.”
“I’m fine thanks” replied Sven… maybe later.
“Okay… I’ll hold you to it” said Frank and he wandered off to the bar again.
“Daddy?” asked Maria “Can we drop our bags off somewhere?”
“Of course you can, my dear” said Jela “you come with me and I’ll show you to your room.”
Maria looked at Sven and he nodded to her so she went with Jela to find a room.
“It is good to have you aboard again, brother” said Thorred “even if it is only temporary.”
“I missed this place” said Sven “but not any more… there is nothing here for me. My friends are here but the ship is a constant reminder of everything I have lost and it saddens me.”
“Tulley would not be happy to hear you say that” said Thorred “her heart and soul went into this vessel.”
“I know, brother” replied Sven “but it doesn’t make things any easier.”
« Last Edit: August 15, 2012, 11:51:05 AM by Inso »
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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 30
« Reply #51 on: August 16, 2012, 11:45:03 AM »
Maria was made very much at home aboard The Obituary. Jela and Fran ‘stole her’ from Sven and took her shopping while Thorred and Sven caught up with what had been going on aboard both ships. The following night, everyone gathered in the lounge and celebrated Tulley’s life with a wake. Maria was with Sven throughout the evening and was allowed a small amount of alcohol to make the toasts with; as was the tradition. There were happy memories and sad ones. There was singing and crying and laughing and Tulley’s memory was cast into the void. By the end of the evening Drackus had properly made peace with Sven because they both knew it was what Tulley would have wanted but they also knew that Sven could not re-join the crew.

The days that Sven and Maria spent aboard The Obituary were happy ones and by the time it came for them to leave, Maria had made friends with the whole crew and especially fell in love with Sally. She thought he was the cuddliest creature she had ever met and had to be prised away from him on the day they left to join Metal Fish. Sven thought it was quite incredible that she had amassed such a lot of clothing and, as she called them, pretty things in such a short space of time.

Comms codes were swapped so that the two ships could remain in regular contact and after Sven had hugged his brother goodbye, Drackus shook his hand in a warrior grip and called him friend again and Sven was glad of that. It was both a happy departure and a sad one. It was like a separation but a reunion at the same time… and what had happened had brought everyone together so that they could part on good terms.

Metal Fish was a freighter. It was about three times the size of The Obituary and was silver from front to stern. Metal Fish was written on the front of the ship in large, black letters across the nose. It had no weaponry and was unassuming. Metal fish was a good name for it because it was teardrop shaped with a large tail fin. When Sven arrived at the ship, he was met by a guildsman who handed him the dockets and security keys and codes. He also handed him a pair of envelopes before departing. Sven opened the ship and he escorted Maria aboard.
“Computer, lights” said Sven and the internal corridors lit up so that the pair of them could see where they were going. As the door closed behind them, Sven dropped the bags by the door and took Maria to the bridge. He opened the first envelope and pushed the disc into the computer before pushing a finger into the data socket and downloading the ship’s manual into his data files. Maria watched and was fascinated by the process. Once he had finished she asked him if he was a robot.
“I used to be” said Sven “but now I am just very complicated… I don’t really know what I am any more but I am happiest as a Grymn.”
“Could you be a human?” asked Maria “if you wanted to?”
“I expect I could manage that” said Sven “but I would rather be myself as a Grymn.”
“Okay” said Maria.
“What would you like to call the computer?” asked Sven “it needs a name.”
“Sally!” said Maria. Sven smiled broadly and agreed that Sally was a good name.
“Right… let’s go and see what the rooms are like” said Sven and they both left to investigate the ship.

After a brief tour Sven and Maria chose their rooms and put what belongings they had in them. Sven smiled because there was a pin-board on the wall of his cabin and it made him think of Tulley. He sat on his bunk and opened the second envelope and it had the details of the first job inside it. It wasn’t a rush job so it would be a good opportunity to test his piloting skills. Sven stood up and went to get Maria so that they could go to the bridge together and prepare the ship for departure.

“First of all, I need to tell the computer it has a name and then I need to tell it what it has to do. It is called ‘setting the protocols’ and it is important because it will mean that I can leave the ship to fly its self” said Sven before he tapped the console to show all of the available protocols. He sprouted extra fingers and they blurred to life as the screen changed so quickly that Maria couldn’t keep up.
“Wow, you type fast” said Maria.
“There… it’s finished” said Sven “say Sally and see what happens.”
“Sally” said Maria.
“What is your command?” asked Sally.
“Tell him to carry out engine tests” said Sven.
“Sally, carry out engine tests please” said Maria.
“Processing” replied Sally “tests will be completed in seven minutes, fifteen seconds.”
Maria smiled and looked at Sven before asking if there was a list of tests that had to be done. Sven copied the list to a data tab and gave it to Maria who immediately took ownership of telling Sally what tests needed doing. That gave Sven the chance to check the hold to make sure everything was ready for departure.
“Before we leave, we need to get some food and provisions on board and I think it would be nice to get a few pictures for the walls… do you fancy painting some?” said Sven.
“I’d love to paint some pictures” said Maria “will you help?”
“We’ll both paint some… I’ll get plenty of paint” replied Sven.
“Can we get some films to watch too?” asked Maria “I’d like to see some.”
“We can pick those up on the comms so there won’t be any need to bring any on board” replied Sven “we’ll also be able to pick up school lessons so you can learn things.”
“Oh” replied Maria “I had forgotten about lessons.”
“Don’t worry, I’ll make it as painless as possible for you… but you have to get some schooling otherwise you won’t be able to look after yourself when you are older” said Sven.
“Okay” said Maria and she smiled “let’s go shopping then.”

Metal fish left the dock at Bloor and did so at a slow and steady pace. Sven carefully guided it out of the clamps and through the main gate before continuing out to the dock limits. Once he passed the limits he told Maria to give the commands and Sally increased speed and set a course for their pick-up destination. Sven and Maria then set up a painting table and spent the afternoon painting and talking about poems and famous writers. Maria didn’t even notice she was receiving lessons and when Sven told her she hugged him and said that he was a lovely teacher which made him very happy. After they had painted a dozen pictures, Maria and Sven went around the ship and stuck them to the walls before admiring their work.
“Are you hungry?” asked Sven.
“Yes, daddy” replied Maria.
“Good because you are going to prepare lunch” said Sven.
“But I don’t know how” said Maria.
“Come on, I’ll help you” replied Sven and they both went to wash their hands and sort out some lunch.

Over the next couple of weeks, Sven became very proud of Maria’s willingness to learn. It had reached a point where every time Sven was about to carry out a task, Maria would step in and ask to help or be shown how to do it. She soaked up information like a sponge and was keen to get involved with every task that came up; no matter how unusual or difficult. Sven made sure that she was always kept busy and managed to mix in study time with the general duties that running a star-ship provided. Sven and Maria cooked together and in the evenings sat and watched films and Maria was fascinated by them.
“Can I have a gun?” asked Maria “Like the one that Star-Pilot Max had?”
“I’m not sure you are old enough to have a pistol yet” said Sven “but we can try you with one and as long as you are safe with it… I can’t see it being a problem. It will have to be stored away until it is time for practice though… they aren’t toys.”
“I know… thank you daddy” replied Maria.
“Maria, when is your birthday?” asked Sven.
“Do I get birthdays too?” asked Maria “I never had a birthday before.”
“Well… you will now” replied Sven “so when is your birthday?”
“Orga 4” said Maria.
“That’s in six weeks!” said Sven “You’ll be ten then.”
“Yep” beamed Maria.
“And another inch taller I expect” said Sven with a laugh “so… what would you like for your birthday?”
“Can we get a nanny?” asked Maria “a young one.”
“To join us on board?” asked Sven “I’m not sure we need one.”
“It would be nice to have a girl to chat with” said Maria.
“We can sort out a nanny if you really want one but that isn’t a birthday present” replied Sven.
“That’s all I want” said Maria.
“Okay” replied Sven “but if something else crops up, let me know.”
“I will” she said.

Sorfee had a pretty standard space dock and when Metal Fish docked and the load had been packed, there was plenty of time to explore. Maria held Sven’s hand as they went from shop to shop. Provisions were bought and various other craft items selected. Sven bought some new clothes and after they had both eaten lunch, Maria dragged Sven to the employment bureau to look for a nanny. Unfortunately there were none available so Sven agreed to keep trying at each port they visited. They returned to the ship, made sure everything had been delivered and then prepared the ship for departure. A couple of hours later they were steadily powering through space to their delivery point.
“We forgot my gun” said Maria.
“There was nowhere selling them” replied Sven “we’ll just have to look around the next place, won’t we?”
“I guess so” said Maria “but you will get me one, won’t you?”
“Of course” replied Sven “are you worried about something?”
“No” said Maria “but you can’t be too careful.”
“Captain” said Sally “there is a build up of carbon dioxide in the hold.”
“Likely cause?” asked Sven.
“Exhaled air from a humanoid respiratory system” replied Sally.
“Maria, you stay here on the bridge until I say it is safe, okay?” said Sven.
“Yes, daddy” said Maria. Sven left the bridge and as he did so said “Sally, secure the bridge”. There was a loud slam as the bolts slid across and once Sven was happy that Maria was safe, he powered down the corridor to the hold; forming a stun rifle in his forearm while he walked.
“Sally, lights” said Sven and the hold was lit up. All around him there were crates filled with engine parts and Sven knew it would take ages to search through them all so he switched his sight to detect carbon dioxide and immediately saw a trace to follow. Charging his stun rifle, he quietly made his way over to the crate and saw that there was damage to the casing that allowed it to be opened. Sven scanned the crate and saw that there was a stowaway inside.
“Stowaway, come out of the crate or I will have to remove you myself” said Sven. He heard a shuffling movement inside before the casing lifted up and the stowaway emerged.
“Don’t hurt me, I’m not dangerous… I can pay!” it said.
“Who are you and why have you stowed away on my ship?” demanded Sven while he trained his weapon on the stowaway.
“I’m Charlie” said the stowaway and she stuck her hand out for a handshake; which Sven declined.
“Why are you on my ship, Charlie?” asked Sven “what is your business here?”
Charlie lowered her hand and looked down at Sven “I needed to leave the dock and the crates said Parthon… so I found a ride” she said.
Sven scanned her up and down and said “give me your pistol.”
Charlie did as she was asked.
“And your knife” said Sven so she pulled the knife from her boot and handed it over.
“And the garrotte in your belt” said Sven and Charlie raised her eyebrows but did as she was asked.
“This way” said Sven and he pointed her towards the door to the corridor.
“Where are you taking me?” asked Charlie.
“To a cabin to sort your self out until I have decided what I am going to do with you” said Sven “I’ll be taking your bag so that I can check who you are.”
Charlie handed him her bag and walked into the cabin.
“Feel free to use the facilities” said Sven as he locked the door behind her “Sally, secure this cabin.”
“Cabin Secured” said Sally.
“Now let’s find out who this Charlie is” he thought on his way to the bridge.
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Offline Inso

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 31
« Reply #52 on: August 16, 2012, 03:30:25 PM »
“Who is it, daddy?” asked Maria “are they dangerous?”
“It is a human female called Charlie” said Sven “I have her bag here so we can check her out.”
“What does she look like?” asked Maria. Sven put his finger into a data socket and down-loaded her image.
“She is very pretty” said Maria “and she has lovely white hair.”
“She is also wanted for theft” said Sven.
“What did she steal?” asked Maria.
“Mostly food and clothing” replied Sven “she has certainly travelled about… her documents show that she has been to eighty seven charted planets.”
“What does she do?” asked Maria.
“Everything from, waitressing to security work it would seem” said Sven “but she only works for short periods before moving on.”

“You get around a bit” said Sven “what are you running from.”
“I’m not running from anything” replied Charlie.
“So why do you travel so much?” asked Sven “it seems to me that the only reason would be that you don’t want to be found.”
“I just like travelling” replied Charlie and Sven knew she was lying.
“I will ask you again in a moment but before I do I want you to consider this” said Sven and he changed his colour to that of smoky crystal, his eyes to a brilliant, glowing white and he raised a hand and transformed it to have a multitude of blades and probes “I can extract the information if you so wish.”
Charlie reeled in terror at the scene in front of her. Sven returned to his normal form and said “if you tell me, I may be able to help you but I need to know what you are running from.”
Charlie stared at him for a while before saying “I was a slave.”
“Where?” asked Sven.
“On Dianaxiss” replied Charlie “I was in a Harem.”
“And who was your master?” asked Sven.
“I was owned by a drugs cartel” replied Charlie and her head bowed and her shoulders slumped “they always find me so I have to keep running.”
“Stand up” said Sven and she did as he asked. His eyes changed and he scanned her from head to toe “you have a device in your earlobe.”
“What?” replied Charlie.
“Your earring is hiding a device in your ear lobe” said Sven “remove your earring and lean forward and I will show you.”
Charlie cautiously leant forward after she had removed the stud and Sven carefully reached up to her earlobe.
“This may sting a little” he said as he projected a tiny from his finger-tip and it whipped into her ear lobe; extracting a tiny plastic device. He turned it over between his fingers before showing it to Charlie “it is a tracking unit” said Sven.
“I wondered how they always found me” said Charlie. Sven crushed the device between his fingers and super-heated it until it was a charred smear.
“We have a four week journey until we reach the next destination” said Sven “you could remain locked in this room, help on the ship or be jettisoned into space… the choice is yours.”
“I will help you aboard the ship” replied Charlie.
“I will warn you that I will not tolerate any lies” said Sven seriously “and if you harm my daughter in any way, I will not be responsible for my actions.”
“Okay” said Charlie “What do you want me to do?”
“I want you use the shower because you smell. I want you to change your clothing” said Sven and then I will introduce you to my daughter.”
Charlie glared at him “I don’t have any other clothing.”
“I’ll see if there is anything aboard that will fit you” said Sven “in the meantime, you will clean yourself up.”
Sven left the cabin and said “Sally, secure the cabin.”
“Cabin secured” replied Sally.

“I’m sorry but this is the best I could do for now” said Sven and he handed the stripped-down evacuation suit to Charlie “it will be comfortable enough until you and Maria can fix you up with something better.”
“Thank you” replied Charlie and she dropped the sheet she was wrapped in and put the boiler suit on. She slipped her shoes back on and stood up “I guess this will do for now.”
“Good, follow me” said Sven and he led the way from the cabin to the bridge without saying another word. When they arrived, Sven introduced Charlie to Maria and asked Charlie to take a seat so they could all chat.
“What are your skills?” asked Sven.
“I have been trained in the arts of pleasure” replied Charlie before she thought for a moment and said “I cook a little.”
“Your list of work includes all sorts… have you ever helped to crew a ship?” asked Sven.
“No… I try not to stay anywhere for too long and a captain will always ask for experience” replied Charlie.
“Can you sew?” asked Maria.
“Yes” replied Charlie.
“Good” said Maria “we can make some clothes. You can be my nanny.”
“I’m sorry kid but I am no one’s nanny” said Charlie “I don’t need the responsibility.”
Sven watched Maria’s face drop and looked at Charlie sternly.
“Well… maybe I can try for a little while to see if I can cut it” said Charlie quickly and Sven smiled at her.
“When did you last eat?” asked Maria.
“Yesterday morning” replied Charlie.
“Well let’s go and find some food” said Maria and she grabbed Charlie’s hand and escorted her to the kitchen area.
“Sally, I want a thousand kilometre scan done every minute. Any craft that are detected, I want to know about it.”
“Processing” replied Sally.
Sven left the bridge and went to join Maria and Charlie in the kitchen.

Sven sat and watched as Charlie devoured the meal that she and Maria had prepared. She was obviously very hungry and Maria made sure that there was plenty of bread available to help fill her up.
“Do you have any wine?” asked Charlie.
“We have a small amount of mead… but no wine” replied Sven “and you won’t be drinking that until we know a bit more about you.”
Charlie flashed a glare at Sven and then softened “okay… I get that” she said.
“You have drugs in your system and there were traces of Stim in your bag” said Sven “I assume that you are an addict.”
Charlie paused from eating and looked at Sven before considering her answer “I do Stim, if that is what you mean” she replied.
“There is no Stim on this vessel” said Sven.
“I sort of gathered that” said Charlie “there’s probably Tranx in the medi-kits though.”
Sven stared at her for a moment before saying “they will be locked away.”
Charlie’s eyes widened and a mild look of panic flashed across her face before she quickly suppressed it.
“You may as well lock me in the cabin” replied Charlie.
“Or we can keep you occupied” said Sven.
“It would be easier for me if you locked me away” replied Charlie.
“Something worth having is worth suffering for” said Sven “we will be able to keep a better eye on you if you stay in our company.”
“But I won’t be able to cope” said Charlie.
“Then we will help you” said Sven “but my earlier statement still stands… harm my daughter and you will regret it.”
“She can’t be your daughter, you’re not human” said Charlie.
“Very astute of you” said Sven sarcastically “I adopted her.”
“Isn’t that a bit weird… a lone… Dwarf shape-shifter… adopting a human, female child?” asked Charlie.
“I am a widower. My wife and I adopted Maria” replied Sven “My wife was a Grymn just as I try to be.”
“Even so” said Charlie “you are a weird robot thing… hardly father material” said Charlie.
“My daddy is the best daddy ever!” shouted Maria “He’s much better than my dead one.”
Charlie was startled by Maria’s response so she apologised “it’s not me… it’s the Stim.”
“Don’t be mean” said Maria.
“I’ll try not to, baby” said Charlie “thank you for the food.”

The next couple of weeks were very difficult. Charlie stayed in bed for much of each day as she fought her body and shook violently. When she did leave her room, she couldn’t concentrate on anything and Maria ended up looking after her and making sure that she was properly fed. On one occasion, Charlie lashed out and slapped Maria and was instantly restrained by Sven. Maria was fine but when Charlie realised what she had done, she sobbed uncontrollably and begged for some Tranx but Sven denied them to her and locked her in her cabin for the evening. After two weeks, the shaking subsided and she became more coherent again. She was able to do menial tasks but was extremely emotional and cried at the slightest thing. Sven worried about Maria because Charlie kept cuddling her all the time and sobbing. Maria took it all in her stride and just kept making sure that Charlie was kept well fed. Maria also made Charlie a dress from some of the spare linen so that she could relax a bit more comfortably. In the fourth week, Charlie seemed to wake up and began to sit with Maria and paint and sew and keep her company. They chatted a lot and for the first time since she arrived, Charlie laughed and smiled. The week flew by and in no time, Metal Fish docked at Parthon.

“It is up to you what you want to do” said Sven “you can stay aboard or you can leave.”
“I can’t stay on board” said Charlie “it isn’t my thing.”
“I know Maria would like you to stay” said Sven hopefully.
“I know… but I can’t. I’m sorry but it would drive me to despair” replied Charlie “she’s lovely but I would be no role model for her.”
“If you are sure, you’d better have this” said Sven and he handed her the pistol, dagger and garrotte that he had confiscated when she arrived “you may need them.”
“Thank you, Sven” replied Charlie and she bent down and kissed his cheek “you were kind to me. Say good bye to Maria for me.”
“I will” said Sven and he watched Charlie walk across the dock street and disappear in the throng of people “well… that was that” he thought and he walked back into the ship to go and off-load the crates.

“I am sorry Mr. Oak-Arm, there are no nannies available at the moment” said the man behind the counter at the employment agency.
“Thank you for looking” said Sven and he escorted Maria from the building.
“We’ll find one soon, daddy; I know it” said Maria.
“I’m sure we will” replied Sven “I suppose we’d better see if we can find you a pistol, while we are here.”
“Oh, can we?” replied Maria.
“Of course” replied Sven “I promised we’d give it a go, didn’t I?”
They both walked down the street and eventually found a general store that had a small selection of weaponry. Sven chose a small pistol that suited Maria’s grip; test fired it to check its aim and bought it. He managed to get a holster and cleaning kit and a small amount of ammunition for it. Maria couldn’t wait to try it out but Sven said it would have to wait until the ship was safely underway again. While they were on Parthon, they restocked the food and fuel and picked up another load for the guild. It was another slow-time job so Sven and Maria took the opportunity to stop off at a restaurant for something to eat. They were just tucking into their meals when there was a huge commotion from the kitchen. It sounded like pans being thrown and plates breaking and all of a sudden a woman dashed from the kitchen; crying her eyes out whilst clutching a bloody wound on her forehead. Moments later a large, fat, four armed alien burst out and threw a bag of belongings after her whilst shouting furiously in an alien language. He burst back into the kitchen and left the woman to collect her things from the floor whilst trying to stem the flow of blood.
“Let me help” said Sven and he crouched to look at her head.
“Get off!” screamed the sobbing woman “I don’t need help… leave me alone.”
“But you are hurt” said Sven and he stepped back “please let me help you.”
“Do you own a hotel?” screamed the woman “cos, I’ve just been fired by that fething moot clod!”
“No…” replied Sven “you need to fix that wound… let me help.”
The woman lowered her hand and looked at the blood in her palm before promptly passing out on top of her bag.

When the woman came too, she was on a clean bed and had a dressing around her head. She sat up and felt a sharp pain across her forehead but ignored it and climbed off the covers. The door opened and Maria popped her head around it.
“You are awake then?” asked Maria.
“Yes… where am I?” asked the woman.
“You are on our ship” said Maria.
“What? Tell me we are still in port!” said the woman and she jumped up.
“Yes” replied Maria “daddy said we wouldn’t leave until you were better.”
“Where is your daddy?” asked the woman.
“I’ll show you” said Maria and she held out her hand for the woman to hold “my name is Maria.”
“That is a nice name. My name is Heather” she replied.
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 32
« Reply #53 on: August 16, 2012, 05:02:32 PM »
“It is good to see you have regained consciousness” said Sven when Maria and Heather walked in “My name is Sven.”
“Hello Sven, I’m Heather… thank you for looking after me” she said.
“Do you remember what happened?” asked Sven.
“Unfortunately, yes” replied Heather “I guess I’m jobless and homeless again.”
“What happened?” asked Sven.
“There is only so long you can tolerate the advances of a four-armed employer” replied Heather “so I scalded him with soup.”
“So what are you going to do now?” asked Sven.
“Find somewhere else, I guess” replied Heather.
“Have you ever worked on board a star-ship before?” asked Sven.
“No, I can’t say that I have” said Heather.
“Would you like to?” asked Sven.
“What?” asked Heather in surprise.
“Would you like to work aboard this ship?” asked Sven.
“What? Just like that?” asked Heather.
“Yes… just like that” said Sven.
“Oh… I’ll have to think… it’s a big step…” said Heather.
“You have an hour to decide… we have held here for long enough as it is” said Sven.
“My things are still at the restaurant” said Heather “I’ll have to get those… but Raaax will never let me in there again.”
“I will collect your things” said Sven “and your wages will be sixty thousand plus full board.”
“SIXTY THOUSAND?!” said Heather and she quickly found a chair to sit down on “I’ve never even seen that much money before.”
“We will take holidays when we can but they will generally be where we dock… do you have family here?” asked Sven.
“No family…” replied Heather who was in a daze “but you don’t know how my cooking tastes.”
“Are you with us or are you on your way?” asked Sven.
“What the feth… I’ll stay” said Heather.
“Good” said Sven as he left the bridge “I’ll be back shortly with your belongings.”

“Here are your things, here is a letter of apology and here is your severance pay” said Sven as he handed everything to Heather “Raaax was kind enough to provide me with a verbal reference as well.”
Heather opened the envelope with the money in and gasped “there’s over a thousand credits in there.”
“He was very sad to see you leave” said Sven “Sally, seal the ship and let’s get underway.”
“Doors are closed, pre-flight checks in progress” said Sally.
“Has Maria helped you find a room yet?” asked Sven.
“Not yet” said Heather.
“Well, you two go and sort that out and we’ll worry about everything else once we are underway” said Sven. Maria helped Heather with her bags and they both disappeared from the bridge.

Sven was happy with his ship. He was happy with his job because there was no rush and there were no worries. He had time to practice with his pilot skills and he was able to gather any information that he needed from the guild data banks. Heather was a terrible cook and was almost unbelievably clumsy but she and Maria were happy in each other’s company. Heather was not as pretty as Charlie but she was human, a little older; about thirty and was always happy to talk. She had difficulty reading but Maria was helping her to get better which, in turn, was helping Maria to learn. Sven missed Tulley very much but was managing things much better now that Maria had a friend.

Time passed. The three travellers had a good life and enjoyed the days, months and years as they meandered by. The routine of picking up and delivering loads of parts, food-stuff or all manner of hardware was something that sat very well with Sven. Whenever they stopped at a dock, the three of them would go and explore and if they had time they would stay for a while so that they could have a chance to stretch their legs and enjoy the facilities for a week or so. Maria became very fond of Heather and Sven was glad that Maria now had a mother figure; especially because she was approaching womanhood and Sven had no wish to deal with some of the more troublesome issues that came about as a result. In fact, the only thing that troubled Sven was the dreams he had. Whenever he powered down, the whispers started and they always said the same things. It was always Iddare; always fire and ice and a single star.

“I can’t explain it, brother” said Sven into the comms “it is always the same dream.”
“How long has it been now?” asked Thorred.
“Nearly four years” replied Sven.
“Have you located Iddare?” asked Thorred.
“I haven’t looked for it” said Sven “I am afraid what might happen if I go there.”
“You will have to face it one day” said Thorred “anyway, how is my niece?”
“She is as perfect as ever” replied Sven “she is a fantastic shot with a pistol and she can draw it from a holster quicker that her hero, Max.”
“Ha! I knew she was a natural” replied Thorred “I bet she’s almost twice your height by now too.”
“Not quite… but she is going to be a tall human female when she has finished growing” said Sven “she is already taller than Heather.”
“Jela and the crew send their best” said Thorred “even Chook has said it is about time you showed up for a visit. Frank has found one of Tulley’s special repairs and he asked if you knew about the catalyst driver or something like that. He’s going to send you the details because he is trying to sort out a ticking noise from the port engine and believes it is that.”
“No worries, brother” said Sven “send it over and I’ll take a look.”
“Cheers, mate” replied Thorred “well, all the best and give Maria a kiss from us all.”
“I will, brother” replied Sven “catch you later.”
The screen faded and Sven was left with his thoughts.
“Sally, search the guild data-banks for Iddare and send the details to my console please” said Sven.
“Processing” said Sally.
Sven left his cabin and found Maria and Heather in the common area with data-tablets spread all over the table. They were deep in conversation about how planets were formed and Sven was so proud of his Maria because Heather could read perfectly now.
“Big bang theory is it?” asked Sven when he entered.
“Yep!” said Maria.
Sven walked over to her and kissed her forehead “that’s from Thorred and the crew. They send their best to all of us.”
“Dad! You should have said” blurted Maria “I would have loved to see Jela to speak to.”
“It was Thorred” replied Sven “they want us to visit so we’ll have to make a date soon.”
“Captain, data is waiting at your personal console” said Sally.
“Thank you Sally” said Sven. He kissed Maria on the forehead again and said to Heather “I hope she isn’t tiring you out.”
“No way, Sven; this is fascinating stuff” replied Heather.
“Well I’ll leave you to it” replied Sven and he was about to leave when Maria said “what data are you searching, dad?”
“Just maps and things” replied Sven “nothing too interesting.”
“Oh” replied Maria “you haven’t forgotten that it is my birthday in three weeks, have you?”
“How can I forget it is your fourteenth birthday when you keep reminding me all the time?” replied Sven; smiling.
“I am only checking” said Maria and she continued with her studies.
Sven left the common area and returned to his console. He opened the file and absorbed the data. Iddare was not a star. It wasn’t even a planet. Idarre was a moon. In fact it was one of four moons that circled a planet not too far from Porphys. Sven noted the coordinates and he suddenly remembered the area. It was very close to where The Cheerful Drake was destroyed. Sven sat back heavily in his chair and thought “I have to go to Iddare.”
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 33
« Reply #54 on: August 17, 2012, 10:03:04 AM »
After a few calls to the guild, Sven managed to get a four week gap between deliveries so that Metal Fish could meet up with The Obituary and also have the time to find Iddare. As usual, they dropped off the load and met up with The Obituary at Charran. Heather and Maria disappeared with Jela and Fran while Sven spent time with his brother and helped Frank to unravel the mysteries of Tulley’s repairs. This time around they managed to get time to visit Elradar and enjoy the gardens for a day before they had to move on. As usual, Heather and Maria returned to the ship laden with gifts and Sven was happy that he had linked up with Tulley through her repairs and modifications on the ship. Once everyone was aboard, Sven set a course for Iddare and they let Sally take control.

Iddare was a moon that orbited a small planet near to Porphys. It was a lifeless, dusty, rock; covered in the craters of millennia of meteor strikes. When Metal Fish approached, proximity sensors flashed to life; warning of debris in the flight path so the ship was brought to a halt. In the near distance Sven could see the wreckage of a star-ship. It was The Cheerful Drake. Metal Fish got as close as it dared before Sven ordered a halt and a tether was attached. Maria asked what he was going to do and Sven told her he was going to investigate before he disappeared to his cabin and emerged in a crystalline form, ready for the vacuum outside. It was the first time Heather had seen him in that form which only served to prove the peace that Sven had enjoyed since she joined the ship. She was quite shocked but when she saw how relaxed Maria was, she calmed down and started asking lots of questions.

Sven exited the ship through an airlock and slowly pulled himself along the tether. The dark wreckage of The Cheerful Drake loomed up in front of him and he entered the cargo area through the rescue hole that had been cut when he and Maria were removed from the ship. Once inside, memories of the day Tulley died flooded into Sven’s mind. He steeled himself and went to find Tulley’s casket but when he got to where he left it, it wasn’t there. He froze and began to search the cargo area; tearing chunks of debris from the floor and throwing them aside so that pieces were floating around like jagged clouds. Tulley’s casket was nowhere to be found. Sven stood, desolate for a moment before a determined look flashed across his crystal features. Glowing vents opened up on each of his calves and he powered upwards; bursting through the wrecked hull and plunging towards the surface of Iddare. The speed at which he landed on the moon was such that a massive cloud of dust leapt into the airless void and a crater was formed.
“Sally, scan the planet for any power sources” said Sven.
“Processing” said Sally.
Sven took stock of his surroundings while Sally worked. The moon was red. It must have been very rich in iron because the dust was like rusted metal.
“There are two power sources” said Sally “one is at your current position. The other is five point two-five kilometres due south from the direction you are facing.”
“Thank you, Sally” replied Sven.
“The power sources are identical” said Sally.
“What?” asked Sven.
“The power sources are identical” replied Sally.
Sven turned around and hovered across the surface in a southward direction. It didn’t take him long to reach the second power source and as he approached, he could see it was Tulley’s casket. Sven landed next to the casket and looked down. It was covered in red dust and even when he brushed the dust off, there was no obvious sign of an energy source; the glow of the lights Sven had put in place had long been extinguished. Sven tried to clear the crystal enough to see through but quickly realised that there was no way he would be able to do it without water so he scanned the casket and discovered a very faint energy signature. “It must be the last of the battery” he thought. He stood for a moment and looked at the casket before he was momentarily distracted by a bright light from behind him. He turned to see a sun cresting the horizon and for a moment, the light that played across the surface of the red moon gave the impression that the dust was on fire. Sven returned his gaze to the casket “I’ll find a place for you on Charran” he said. He carefully lifted the casket and the vents along his calves glowed brightly, lifting Sven and the casket swiftly into the void. As he passed the wreckage of The Cheerful Drake, he ordered Sally to disconnect the tether before Sven fired a salvo of energy from a forearm ion-blaster that sent the remains of The Cheerful Drake tumbling towards the sun in the far distance. Once he was happy that things had been cleaned up, he took his precious cargo aboard Metal Fish.
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 33
« Reply #55 on: August 17, 2012, 12:22:42 PM »
...nearly there...
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 34
« Reply #56 on: August 17, 2012, 02:07:46 PM »
Sven stood in the empty hold and looked down at the dirty casket in front of him. He had insisted that the casket should be quarantined until it had been properly cleaned so Maria and Heather were now barred from entering the hold.
“Sally, is the decontamination unit operational?” asked Sven.
“It is serviceable” replied Sally “but it will not be sufficient for the task.”
“Why not?” asked Sven.
“The box is currently at a temperature of minus one hundred and ten degrees” replied Sally “and the temperature is dropping at a steady one degree every fifteen minutes.”
“”Could we just use hot solution?” asked Sven.
“That may cause fatigue failure of the box structure” replied Sally “it is recommended that an insulated surface is used to shield the ship from the low temperature of the box. The temperature decline cannot be predicted.”
Sven went over to the packaging material storage area to find some insulation when amber lights started to flash and alarms started to sound.
“What is it Sally?” asked Sven.
“There is a power drop throughout the ship of fifteen percent” replied Sally.
“What is causing it?” asked Sven.
“Undetermined” replied Sally.
“Is the power drop increasing or is it constant?” asked Sven.
“Constant” replied Sally.
“Kill the alarms and monitor. Let me know if it drops by a total of twenty five percent” said Sven.
“Alarms deactivated. Monitoring temperature” replied Sally.
Sven found some insulation material and placed it over by the casket. When he lifted the casket onto the material, he felt the cold on his fingers and when he placed the box down, he left a pair of clear hand-prints on the sides. He looked through and could see the yellow material of Tulley’s coveralls and immediately continued to lay his hands over the surface, leaving more and more clear hand prints. He could feel the cold spreading up his arms but ignored it until all of the dust had been pressed off the casket and he could see Tulley from head to toe. He stood back and gazed at Tulley open mouthed. She was still perfect. Her clothing was pristine and he could clearly see Tulley embroidered on her badge but what was most surprising was her skin; it was like frosted ice and the patterns swirled like foam on a rough sea across the surface. Sven stumbled backwards and sat heavily on the floor of the hold.
“What is going on?” he thought.
“Captain, what are your orders?” asked Sally.
“Sally, remain stationary until further notice” replied Sven “I need time to think” he thought.
“Remaining stationary” replied Sally.
“I need to power down” thought Sven so he walked into the decontamination unit and set things going. A few minutes later he left the hold and went to talk to Maria.

“So mummy is now in the hold?” asked Maria.
“Yes, I have recovered her casket” said Sven “and she is still in peace.”
“May I see?” asked Maria.
“Not yet” replied Sven “the casket is contaminated and we can’t get it clean until it warms up a bit.”
“How cold is it?” asked Maria.
“Minus one hundred and thirteen degrees” replied Sally.
“If you touched it, your hands would freeze” said Sven.
“What are we going to do, daddy?” asked Maria “we only have another four days before we have to get back to work.”
“I don’t know… but I think I have to power down to see if I dream again” said Sven.
“Oh” said Maria.
“It shouldn’t take long” said Sven.
“Well, I’m sure Heather will keep me company while you are away” said Maria.
“I’ll be in my room if I am needed” said Sven and he kissed Maria on the forehead before leaving the common area.

As soon as the whispers started, Sven noticed a change to the dream. There was no mention of Iddare or fire or ice. The tears of Porphys were there and they spiralled around a circular garden of tiny flowers. In the centre of the garden was a single gem and the surface spiralled with swirls of mist. All around the garden was the desert of Porphys and Sven immediately recognised the scene. It was where he awoke after he had helped to defeat the Hybrids.

“You will like Porphys” said Sven.
“Why?” asked Maria.
“It is where Chook comes from and it is filled will lizard people” said Sven “and there are giant, flying dragons made of crystal. The females control the planet and are much bigger and stronger than the males too.”
“Are the females as scary as Chook?” asked Maria with wide eyes.
“Much more scary” said Sven.
“I won’t have to leave the ship, will I?” asked Heather.
“Not if you don’t want to but I have a good number of friends there who would make you most welcome” said Sven “they would be honoured to have you both as guests while I attend to my business.”

“Welcome Guardian. Welcome Crystal Saviour!” said Greylar as she bowed low when she saw Sven exit the shuttle that had brought him, Maria, Heather and the casket to the surface. All around, lizards stopped their work and knelt on the ground to worship their saviour.
“What are they doing, daddy?” asked Maria.
“I am viewed as a god here” said Sven “it is a bit embarrassing really.”
“You should embrace your stature, master Taters” said Greylar as she graciously shook his hand in greeting.
“Welcome, Greylar” said Sven “I’d like you to meet my daughter; Maria and our friend Heather.”
“You are all most welcome in my nest” said Greylar and she bowed to them again before she escorted them into the dome. Sven watched as four lizards carried the casket from the shuttle on insulated poles. He smiled to himself at the honour he could see etched across their faces.
“What is your wish, master Taters?” asked Greylar.
“My wish is to leave my two companions in your care while I walk into the wastes with the casket” replied Sven “and please, I am known as Sven now.”
“It will be as you wish, master Sven” replied Greylar “when do you plan to depart?”
“As soon as Maria and Heather are settled” said Sven.
“Well, we’d best get them settled” said Greylar with a toothy grin.

The garden was exactly as he had left it. The tiny flowers were still growing low to the ground in the large crater. Sven noticed that there was no sand on the flowers and it was as if they had a protective bubble around them because they looked so fresh amongst the arid and barren area around the crater. Sven carefully carried the casket to the centre of the garden and noticed that there was a silhouette of a Grymn outlined by flowers there. Inside the silhouette was rich soil but nothing grew there. Sven placed the casket on the silhouette and stepped back but nothing happened so he sat next to the casket, on the lush flowers and waited.

The sun travelled lazily across the sky and slowly dipped behind the horizon, leaving the desert to bask in the glow of a billion stars. The sound of night creatures could be heard as they scampered around; hunting and being hunted. Sven looked at the sky and marvelled at the view and instinctively rested a hand on Tulley’s casket. It felt warm. He took his hand away straight away and felt the ground vibrate as tiny stems began to climb up around casket out of the rich soil. The flowers that sprung from the stems matched those in the rest of the garden and Sven was glad to see that they didn’t cover the top of the casket so he could still see Tulley. He touched the casket again and noticed that his hand was in its crystalline form. He quickly checked the rest of his body and saw that he was completely crystal apart from his clothing so he removed his clothes and placed them just outside the crater. He was about to step back into the crater but for some reason, he couldn’t. It was as if there was a force holding him away. He stepped back and was about to attack the field when he felt a dull vibration rising through the ground. He looked towards a small outcrop of rock to see one face of it open and a cavern appear. From the cavern came a great roar, closely followed by the Tears of Porphys flying forth. As the Dragons approached, a pulse of force spread out from the garden and launched Sven clear. He sat and watched as the massive dragons circled the garden; just as they had in his dream. The casket began to rise into the air on a column of flowers and glowed brightly with a pure, white light. Sven could only watch as all nine of the Tears of Porphys swiftly converged on the casket and dissolved into it. The casket glowed furiously; so much so that Sven had to look away. There was a dull thump and the light dimmed enough for Sven to see nine crystals fly radially away from the casket and drop to earth; just inside the rim of the garden. Then all light was extinguished and it took a moment for Sven to adjust his sight. The casket was lying at the centre of the garden with only the light of a billion stars to illuminate it. Sven climbed to his feet and walked to the edge of the garden. He pushed his hand forward and felt no resistance so he stepped onto the flowers and carefully made his way to the centre. When he reached the casket, he gingerly touched the case and it immediately shattered. He looked down at Tulley’s crystalline face and her eyes opened.

“The prophesy is begun again” whispered the voices “the nine tears shall dwell in the depths to awaken when the home is most threatened. The Guardian will depart and will take his heart’s desire with him and he shall find peace. The balance will be restored and the shards will be spread across the void.”

“Are you okay, babe?” said a voice that was like the echo of a dream “Sven… wake up!”
Sven opened his eyes and looked up at Tulley.
“I thought I’d lost you” she said.
“I thought I’d lost you too” said Sven and he sat up.
“No chance of that, silly” said Tulley.
Sven reached out a hand and touched Tulley’s face “you are real” he said.
“Of course I am… but The Father knows how I got here.”
“You are flesh” said Sven in a dazed fashion.
“Why wouldn’t I be?” asked Tulley “you are.”
Sven quickly looked at his hands and they were indeed the colour of flesh. He thought of them as crystal but his hands didn’t respond. He tried again but still nothing happened.
“What is it?” asked Tulley.
“I can’t change” said Sven.
“Good, I love you as you are” said Tulley “are you going to put your clothes on because this garden has enough stems in it without you showing yours off as well.”
Sven looked down and realised he was naked and flesh… he was a Grymn. He was stunned.
“I am flesh” he said.
“Of course you are!” said Tulley “now put some clothes on and let’s get out of here.
Sven climbed to his feet and slowly dressed. He remembered the crystals falling from the casket so he looked for them. All he found were nine patches of fertile soil around the edge of the garden of flowers.
“What are you doing?” asked Tulley.
“I thought I saw something… I must be a bit sun-blind or something” replied Sven “we’ll have to travel in the dark or we’ll dry up.”
“Okay babe” replied Tulley “is it far?”
“A day or so” said Sven.

They were only walking for an hour before the sun began to rise above the horizon and they felt the fierce heat on their backs. Sven was about to direct them towards a rocky bluff but noticed something coming towards them in the distance. He strained to see due to the light reflecting from the sand but eventually he realised that it was a crowd of lizards and they were all walking towards them. In the lead was a very tall and mighty warrior who carried a staff. The whole crowd was naked apart from a staff and a belt that each of them carried. Sven heard a shout and the lizards began to dash towards Sven and Tulley. When they arrived the leader immediately threw herself at Sven’s feet and like a ripple in a pond, the rest of the crowd followed and Sven could see at least a thousand lizards bowing low.

“It is our privilege to bear you to our settlement” said Greylar.
“Only if you stop all this nonsense” replied Sven.
Greylar got to her feet and the rest of the lizards followed suit. A litter was quickly fashioned from staffs and belts and Sven and Tulley were carried aloft by the multitude; at great speed towards Greylar’s settlement.
“This is a bit weird” said Tulley.
“This is nothing compared to what you will soon learn” replied a rather stunned Sven.

Maria’s eyes nearly fell out when she saw Tulley alive. “Mummy?!” she said as she cautiously approached.
Tulley threw her a questioning look before Sven told Maria that there needed to be a bit of catching up. Maria shook Tulley’s hand and said hello before letting go and stepping aside to allow both Sven and Tulley into the room.
“How did you know where to find us?” asked Sven.
“The sky was lit up like a beacon. The Tears were aloft and when we felt the ground move and saw the signs, we knew where to go” said Greylar “the prophesy is fulfilled and renewed.”
“So you knew this was going to happen?” asked Sven.
“Not exactly” replied Greylar “the prophesy is vague on most things but the outcome was predicted.”
“Could someone tell me what is going on?” asked Tulley “Where is Drackus?”
“We have a lot to tell you, babe” said Sven but we will have to leave soon or I will be in a lot of trouble with my bosses. You will be told every thing once we get underway.”
“Greylar, please accept my humble gratitude” said Sven “without you and your generosity, I would not be here as I am in front of you now.”
“It is Porphys that should thank you” replied Greylar “you have suffered much at the hands of the prophecy but you will forever be welcome here.” Greylar handed Tulley, Sven, Heather and Maria a pendant. Each was a tiny piece of crystal on a leather string.
“Have peace and prosperity on your travels” said Greylar.
“Thank you” replied Sven.
“The shuttle awaits you” said Greylar and she escorted the four of them from the dome and outside. As far as the eye could see, the sun shone on the dorsal scales of prostrate lizards. No sand was visible just the rainbow sheen from thousands of different coloured lizards. The four of them boarded the shuttle and said their farewells to Greylar before the shuttle lifted into the air.
“So… what is going on?” asked Tulley and she crossed her arms abruptly and scowled at Sven “and when did you stop being called Taters?”
“Do you remember when I was called T87?” asked Sven.
“Yes” replied Tulley and she paused for a moment before saying in a shaky voice “you were a robot.”
“When we get back to the ship, we will talk for as long as you like” said Sven “The ship will be unfamiliar to you but it is our home now.”
“Oh” said Tulley weakly “I need some tea.”
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Offline Inso

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastern Endeavours Part 34
« Reply #57 on: August 17, 2012, 04:52:09 PM »
“Sally, set a course for Palerma and proceed at pace” said Sven.
“Course set. Seventy five percent velocity” replied Sally.
“Right, let’s get some tea and go to the common room” said Sven “I’ll just take Tulley to show her our cabin. Heather dashed off to the kitchen and Maria dashed to the common area to make sure it was tidy.

The door to the cabin closed behind them and Sven took Tulley in his arms and hugged her tightly. He kissed her forehead and smelt her hair. She felt warm against him and he began to cry.
“What is it, babe?” asked Tulley.
“I have missed you so much” said Sven through his tears.
“Well I’m back now!” said Tulley and she kissed him tenderly “you can loosen your grip if you like.”
“Sorry” said Sven and he allowed her some space.
“The bed isn’t very big” said Tulley and Sven suddenly realised that they would need to move into a different cabin… he had got used to being alone “don’t worry; there is a bigger one a couple of doors down.”
“Good” replied Tulley “there’s no space for fun in there. Are there any other clothes I can wear?”
“I’m sorry, I lost everything” said Sven “but Maria will have some old clothes that will fit.”
“Well, I guess that will have to do” said Tulley “are you going to kiss me or are we going for tea?”

Five minutes later Sven and Tulley returned to the common area and joined Maria and Heather. There was some fresh herbal tea and some snacks waiting.
“Tulley, this is Maria and this is Heather” said Sven “Maria is our adopted daughter and Heather is our friend who lives aboard the ship and helps us with everything. This is Tulley, my wife.”
“Your wife?” asked Tulley “when did that happen?”
“All in good time” said Sven “let’s have tea… we have a lot to talk about.”

Sven went right back to the start; the moment he stepped aboard The Obituary for the first time. He explained how he had changed over the years and how he had fallen in love with Tulley. He talked about how they had been thrown off The Obituary and how Drackus had become friends again. He talked about the war on Porphys and their time aboard The Cheerful Drake. He told Tulley how Maria had been rescued and how they had adopted her after a brief marriage ceremony. He told her how she had dies and how he had dreamt of the prophesy. Finally, he told Tulley all about Metal Fish and how Heather had joined the crew.

When he had finished, he looked at Tulley, Maria and Heather and they were all sat in stunned silence.
“You’ve done all that?!” asked Heather in awe “WOW!”
“So… basically” began Tulley with a broad smile “we got married, adopted a human daughter and you owe me a blessing on Charran then?”
“Not just that… but yes” replied Sven.
“Wow!” said Tulley. Sven could see she was lost for words. There was a pause before she said “as soon as we get to port, we’re going shopping.” Tulley held Heather and Maria’s hands and grinned broadly “I’ve seen paintings… who did those?”
“Me and daddy” said Maria.
“They are gorgeous!” said Tulley “do you sew?”
“Yes” replied Maria”
“Brilliant” said Tulley “how about you, Heather?”
“Maria taught me” replied Heather.
“We’ll soon have some fun together… but I need something to wear” said Tulley “Maria, do you have anything?”
“Yep!” she said and she leapt up, grabbed Tulley by the hand and they hurried off together.
“You’ll like Tulley” said Sven “she’s fething bonkers.”
Heather nodded and sipped her tea. She suddenly felt very naïve after hearing all the adventures that had been going on.
“You used to be a robot?” she asked.
“Yes… with a copy of my Grymn brother’s brain pattern” replied Sven.
“And now you are a flesh and blood Grymn?” asked Heather; sipping her tea again.
“Yes” replied Sven “but if you ask me the next question, I won’t be able to answer it… maybe it was just magic?”
“So you don’t know how it happened?” asked Maria.
“If I could guess, I would say that Porphys needed me to help her out and when she was finished, she gave me everything I wanted” replied Sven “I can’t provide a better explanation.”
“But you ARE really a Grymn now?” asked Heather.
“I certainly feel like one” replied Sven.
“Good” said Heather “because you scared the fething plop out of me when you turned see through the other day!”
“Well… you won’t have to worry about that again” said Sven with a laugh and he kissed her hand.
“Will I be able to stay on, now that your wife has returned?” asked Heather.
“What?” asked Sven in surprise “you can’t leave… you’re part of the family!”
Heather smiled broadly and looked like the weight of the world had been lifted from her shoulders “thank you” was all she could say.
“I could never have done without you over the last few years” said Sven “and Maria adores you… of course you will stay… I won’t allow you to leave.”
Maria wiped a couple of tears from her eyes and smiled “I was so worried” she said.
“Now all we have to do” said Sven “is find you someone to make your heart pound.”
Maria laughed and blushed and slapped Sven’s arm before saying “don’t be so cheeky.”
“What? You can’t see yourself courting big Frank or someone like him?” teased Sven and he was slapped on the arm again for his trouble “Would you give me a hand sorting out a double room?” he asked.
“Don’t you worry” said Heather “I’ll clean one up for you and if I need a hand I’ll grab Maria.”
“Thank you” said Sven. Heather left the common room and Sven sat for a moment, sipping tea.
“I’m a Grymn” he said to himself and he smiled “just wait until my brother sees me next time.”

After the pick-up at Palerma and the drop off at Largo, Metal Fish travelled to Veelan 7 to collect another shipment. Fortunately, the shipment was destined for Charran so Sven arranged to meet The Obituary there. It would take a further two weeks to get there but that allowed plenty of time for Tulley to settle in and get to know everyone again. By the time Metal Fish reached Charran, Tulley was an over excited wreck. As the ramp dropped and Tulley, Sven Maria and Heather left the ship, the crew of The Obituary was waiting for them. Drackus ran up to Tulley and hugged her as tight as he could. He was overjoyed to see her alive and didn’t care how it happened; just as long as she was there. Everyone else crowded round and Sally managed to extract Tulley from Drackus so he could hug her as well. He was so happy that he had Tulley in one arm and Maria in the other. It was a proper reunion. When Drackus saw Sven, he had to double take. He walked over and shook his hand in a warrior’s grip and suddenly realised that Sven had changed. He stared at him for a moment and said “you are flesh.”
“Yes” replied Sven “it happened when Tulley returned to me.”
“Us” said Drackus “she returned to us.”
“Us then” said Sven.
“Thank you, son” replied Drackus “you have made an old Grymn very happy today.”
“I couldn’t have lived much longer without her” replied Sven.
“She does that to you, doesn’t she?” said Drackus “I truly wish she was my daughter.”
“She is” replied Sven “as sure as Maria is mine.”
Drackus smiled “you look after her this time” he said.
“I will die trying” replied Sven “and I can now so I’ll have to be extra careful.”
“Aye, you will that” said Drackus.
“Fething heck, brother” said Thorred as he approached “what in The Father’s name has happened to you?”
“Everything worked out for a change” said Sven and he embraced his brother.
“You are flesh!” said Thorred in a stunned voice “you must have a tale to tell us!”
“Excellent!” boomed a familiar voice behind the group and Elradar appeared. He put his arms out and said “Welcome! Welcome!”

Elradar had pulled out all the stops. The garden was resplendent with blooms and the finest silks and satins. There were guests from all over and dignitaries from both Porphys and the new Grymn colonies. All of the male guests were regaled in formal dress and the women wore the finest gowns and hats. Sven stood at the altar with Thorred at his side and when Tulley walked down the aisle she had Drackus’s arm to hold. Maria and Heather walked ahead of them; throwing petals upon the ground and Jela and Fran followed; carrying Tulley’s train. Tulley was dressed in a multicoloured silk gown with embroidered flowers and she had her name badge fastened to the front. Her hair was swept back and she had a single white flower in her hair. Her peerless beauty was there for all to see.
“You’ve done alright, brother” said Thorred with a nudge of his elbow when he and Sven first saw her.
“I’ve done better than that” said a nervous looking Sven.
“The deed’s been done, brother… don’t worry” said Thorred “it is only a blessing.”
“Not for me” replied Sven “this is the real thing and I want it to be perfect”.
When Tulley arrived, Drackus gave her hand to Sven and sat down along with the bridesmaids.
“Normally, I would insist on carrying out this blessing myself” said Elradar and the gathered guests went quiet “but there are times when even the most adventurous of dignitaries are out of their depth!”
There were a few laughs from the assembled guests before Elradar continued “on this occasion we required some help so I would like to introduce High priestess Felrak’khar, seer of Porphys and the honourable padre Long-Look from the new territories.

“Quiet and listen” said the padre “when The Father brought us from the cage he saw that we were strong. He knew we would survive and flourish. He gave us rules and he made us work. We followed the rules and enjoyed the work and our culture flourished. There were challenges along the way and we faced them. There were joys along the way and we embraced them. Divided we were strong but united we were stronger. Today, we bless Mrs Tulley, Fedorra Oak-Arm and Mr Sven Oak-Arm as they cement their unity in The Father’s name.” There was a short pause before the padre shouted “stand and be counted”.
Everyone stood up and the padre looked at them all before he turned to Sven and Tulley “in The Father’s name, receive this blessing.” He leant forward and placed his thumb on each of their foreheads “The Father sees and The Father writes this blessing in your tome so that when you go to meet your ancestors, they know that The Father has blessed you and they will be proud.”
The padre stepped back and allowed the seer to step forward.
“It is not our usual custom to bless unification like this” said the seer “exception has been made for The Crystal Guardian whom the prophecy sent us.” The seer removed a pendant from her neck and held it aloft. “Porphys blesses the crystal Guardian and his unity with the flower of the sands.”
Behind Sven, there was a sudden commotion as a few chairs were scattered and the sound of fighting erupted. Everyone turned to see a tall woman clad in gold wrestling with four security guards and winning “Hei’sath… Frahhhlk!” shouted the woman as she struggled to her feet, throwing off one of the guards. Elradar stormed towards the commotion and bellowed “what is the meaning of this interruption?”
“I will see this blessing!” shouted the woman who stood up to her full height and Elradar recognised her “Ther’ule?”
“Yes, Ther’ule” she scowled “how dare I be treated in this manner.”
“Guards! Stand down” said Elradar.
“Thank you human” she said as she brushed past and walked up to the altar “My apologies for the interruption, little warrior.”
“It is good to see you Ther’ule… we thought you were gone” said Sven.
“We will speak of such things later” said Ther’ule and she took a seat before saying “continue.”
“The blessings have been given” said Elradar who appeared at the altar between the seer and the padre “but I have one more guest to introduce… Drackus.”
Drackus climbed onto the altar and faced everyone present.
“I once called this man oath-breaker” said Drackus and there were a few gasps amongst the Grymn present “and I meant it!” Drackus paused for a moment before saying “I renounce the accusation and I do so in front of The Father. That is all… they’ve got my blessing.” Drackus went back to his seat and there was a pause before Sig stood up and said “for feth’s sake… can we start drinking yet?” Everyone cheered and started clapping as Sven kissed Tulley tenderly and they left the altar.
“Was that about right?” asked Sven.
“Perfect” replied Tulley.

There was a party that evening, of the like rarely seen anywhere. The longer the evening went on, the more guests arrived and soon the garden was awash with cheerful chat, drunken singing and friendly banter. It was great to see so many Grymn amongst the guests and the crews of The Obituary and Metal Fish were welcomed in to the group and received the requisite banter that all Grymn would expect. Ther’ule joined the Grymn and was quizzed about what had happened. All that she would say was that she was lucky and there was a small Sleiti colony with enough inhabitants to rebuild but unfortunately, the choir had stripped them of all but the rudimentary psychic abilities required to wear bio-suits and they were very short of crafters to grow any bio-ware.

A week later, The Obituary and Metal Fish departed Charran and went their separate ways. Sven had received the destination details of the new Grymn colonies so that he would no where to go if he ever wanted to settle with his family. Ther’ule returned to her people and all the guests returned home. Elradar remained on Charran and sadly watched everyone depart.

“Well, back to work then” said Sven.
“Yes, captain” said Tulley and she slid onto his lap, put an arm around him and gazed out of the forward screen.
“Less of the captain” said Sven and he kissed her cheek.
“It’s about time we had a bit of good fortune” said Tulley “does this mean I can have a puppy now?”
“If you want a puppy” said Sven “I will see to it that you get whichever one you want.”
Tulley paused for a moment and said “I don’t know… I already have my puppy.”

The Obituary set a course towards the East and the Grymn colonies.

Metal Fish travelled towards Sertal 4 to pick up the next shipment.

On Porphys in the wastes of the desert the sound of breaking crystal could be heard. Nine patches of soil began to erupt as the tiny heads of nine dragons appeared in all their crystal glory and cried out to the stars. The stars answered with a roar and the little dragons leapt into the air and disappeared into the desert just as the prophesy predicted.
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastward Endeavours Finished
« Reply #58 on: August 18, 2012, 11:53:46 AM »
Inso aka "Pringles" it seems. Brilliant blast through to the end, all sorts happening, loved it.  :applause:

Offline Inso

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Re: Grymn Fluff - Eastward Endeavours Finished
« Reply #59 on: August 19, 2012, 08:53:23 PM »
Thank you.

At one point I was tempted to have Charlie's employers turn up and blow up Metal Fish, killing everyone on board (once Sven was a proper Grymn)...

...

... but I think Kev would have disowned me if I'd done that :)
The light at the end of the tunnel is just someone with a torch, locking the gate.

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