Categories
Shadowstar

008

Duncan lets Bronwen know they’ve arrived at the place where Cassius is being kept. Because MacBeth is injured, she has to take Duncan. She lets him know that if she gets captured or hurt, he is to escape and in no circumstances is he to get killed. She takes Duncan inside as her ‘bounty’ but they are denied entrance without an I.D. or a bounty that’s really worth something. Bronwen returns with Duncan back to the ship, rather pissed off, where MacBeth is waiting. She realizes, he figured that’d probably happen. MacBeth would make a better bounty, but she’s not keen on the idea while he’s injured. Without much of a choice, they head backside now with MacBeth as the bounty and get easy passage.

They break out Cassius without a hitch, but on the way out someone spots MacBeth dressed as a guard and sends him off to “fetch the Shadowstar” from the cell. They have no choice but to separate. Cassius sends out a toaster that explodes, and they make it back to the ship. MacBeth doesn’t make it back to the ship with the rest of them, and Bronwen wants to go back and get him but Cassius takes over and tells Duncan to take off anyway. Duncan is still looking out for himself and does as Cassius orders, and Bronwen gives in simply because she’s out numbered and stomps off. Cassius works on the radio panel while he seems to be harassing Duncan for thinking his sister was hot. MacBeth is captured by McRaven. Bronwen and Cassius manage to catch where he’ll be taken over the radio, and come up with a plan.

Duncan: *Looks up as Bronwen enters.* Oh, hey, Cap’n! Sorry about the little er … miscommunication thing. I uh, tried to uh … get it working without, you know, breaking her but … *He sees the expression on her face.* Uh, anyways. News. We’re entering the orbit of that place you wanted to go to really badly.

Bronwen: You’re such a-..oh. Oh!! See if you can sneak us on! Then get your shit together, You and I are sneaking on board and kidnaping someone. -04:44 Apr 09

Duncan: *Blinks!* Whoa now … Did you just say ‘kidnapping someone’? Like who …? *He points.* That. That’s Morgan’s place. You’re not gonna kidnap someone from her, are you?

Bronwen: *Bronwen gave a wide nefarious grin.* Yes, yes we are. But he was mine first, so it’s fair. -04:46 Apr 09

Duncan: *Blinks! The Cap’n was bloody mad!* Mac! Can’t Mac go with you this time? I mean … he’s gone with you every time so far. Uh … Why break tradition?

Bronwen: MacBeth saved our asses with those Squidpirates and he’s getting some well deserved rest. But, if you’re going to be a big baby I can leave you here with him and I’ll go do it myself. -04:52 Apr 09

Duncan: No … No, I’ll go! *He finally stammers. He doesn’t want to get left with Mac. Now if the Cap’n had been the one staying back, that would have been an entirely different matter.* Uh … Let me see if I can sort of fly under the radar … *He starts flicking switches and pressing buttons.* The ship is going on a very slow speed setting right now. If we play it cool and stay silent, we may be able to pass under the radar as floating debris. There are tons of those around here so no one should pay another one any mind.

Duncan: As soon as we pass those things right there. *He points to the satellites floating up ahead. A security satellite that requires all ships to identify themselves or be considered hostile and shot down.* We can switch to a faster speed and become just another small ship lost in the crowd.

Bronwen: The old whore has a fortress here, doesn’t she. *Bronwen didn’t want to be impressed, but she couldn’t help herself. It was going to be a little more difficult than she thought in getting Cassius out…* -05:03 Apr 09

Duncan: It’s one of her outposts. No one is really sure why it’s here but it is. If she’s beefed up security, we’re in deep shit.

Bronwen: Oh Duncan… You have a wonderful way of putting minds at ease. *She was about 99% sure that security would be extra bad, and it could even be a trap! But… she’ll keep that bit to herself and not terrorize poor Duncan.* I’m going to get on that suit so no one will recognize me. If we run in to trouble, I am some random mercenary and you’re my bounty, okay? -05:09 Apr 09

Duncan: *Quickly nods! He’s nervous as hell and he’d probably agree to anything under the circumstances!* Bounty, right. *He says, eyes locked on the floating … thing … of doom ahead of them. His anxiety lessens only slightly when they pass by the satellites without a hitch …*

Bronwen: If I get captured or killed, you run like mad back to the ship and escape. And under no circumstances do you get yourself killed. -05:13 Apr 09

Duncan: *Another series of quick nods!* Escape, got it. *He says as he flicks the switches and presses the buttons again. The ship goes slightly faster, blending in with the many other ships coming and going.*

Bronwen: Relax, Duncan… If you’re nervous they’ll get suspicious. *She pat him on the head before running off to get her suit on!* -05:18 Apr 09

Duncan: *Leans forward over the control panel as they drift into the giant ship. He gulps.* … Can you blame me …?

[Bronwen almost thinks they’re in trouble. Almost.] -02:35 Apr 12
[MacBeth is currently out of comission!] -02:37 Apr 12

Duncan: *Gulps!* Awh man … *He takes deep breaths. Cool. He had to play it cool. He got up and went to find the Cap’n.* Ah … Cap’n? I know you’re all hyped and all but uh … what’s the plan?

Bronwen: *Plan? She really didn’t have much of a plan, it’s not like they had an interior map of the place. But.. she couldn’t tell Duncan that, he looked like he was going to pass out.* We land on the station undetected – if we’re questioned or stopped on the inside, you are my bounty and I’m bringing you in. I will have on the suit with the helmet and voice disguise so no one will recognize me. We find out a little information on a certain technician… then we grab him and run. It’s easy! -02:44 Apr 12

“Do you have your orders, Captain?” The woman on the screen, Mad Morgan herself, asked. “Yes, ma’am. We have tightened security. No ship goes in or out, no one comes or goes, that we do not know. We act discreetly and quietly and keep our eye on your guest.” The captain repeats, having memorized his orders to the letter. Mad Morgan smiled. “Yes, yes, you do,” she said just before she disappeared.

Duncan: *He wanted so badly to believe it was as simple as it sounded! So … he convinced himself that he believed it. He nodded.* Right. Info, grab, run. Do I … do I get any weapons this time?

Bronwen: *Bronwen hesitated… But decided that, maybe it was for the best.* All right. You can take anything you can conceal. -02:58 Apr 12

Duncan: *Dashes off and returns … with a solar-powered screwdriver?! He shrugs.* It’s … the only thing I could uh … find … *He scratches his head with the screwdriver.* On short–Ow! *He winces as he accidentally turns it on and the thing starts drilling a hole into his scalp.*

Bronwen: …. *Bronwen snatches the thing out of his hand, and promptly clobbers him with it! Then she shoves a gun at him!* Keep yourself alive, or I’m going to make you regret you ever existed! -03:06 Apr 12

Duncan: Ow! *He winces and barely manages to grab the gun she thrusts into his arms.* Okay … Okay … *As soon as her back was turned, he huffed.* Sheesh.

Outside, it’s business as usual. Security is, indeed, tight as there are men in uniforms all over the place and they are investigating everyone. There are guards at the doors, keeping watch, and making sure no one goes in or out until they are cleared by the guards making the rounds.

Bronwen: *One perfectly disguised Bronwen, and her fool bounty cross the scene. She even jerks the rope around his neck. She knows he was smarting off to her!* -03:14 Apr 12

Duncan: *PULL! He nearly runs into her as he staggers in step behind her. He’s starting to have second thoughts about this idea …*

“Halt!” A soldier turns from investigating and waving off someone nearby and comes over to the disguised Bronwen and her “captive.” “State your name, business, and present I.D. tag.”

Bronwen: *Bronwen bullshits her reply and in an alien language to boot! Mercenry Dunbron with a highly sought after prisoner. Dunbron doesn’ta HAVE to state details, as he’s much too important for some pissass clipboard pusher to waste time with. …or something to that effect.* -03:23 Apr 12

The soldier is not impressed! “No I.D., no passage. And if you want to bring a bounty, try bringing in someone worth bringing in. Until then, no admittance.” Then he moves on to investigate someone else.

Bronwen: *Well shit! Damned good for nothing Duncan! He could have at least looked more desirable! This requires reworking on the plan… She drags Duncan back to the ship and pulls off her helmet as she stalks down the corridor.* I need a better captive! We could use myself.. but shit would really hit the fan then! -03:29 Apr 12

Duncan: *Gets dragged back to the ship!* Hey! Oooff! *He only barely avoids eating the wall as he’s tossed aside like yesterday’s garbage!*

MacBeth: *Is sitting at the ship’s controls. He swerves the seat when Shadowstar stalks into the ship.* Back already …? -03:32 Apr 12
Bronwen: Why aren’t you in be-..! *She stops! There’s an idea… He already looks like hell, it would be perfectly believable and then she could-… But he really needs a break, and she’s not a heartless wench. …but if it would work.* Hmm… -03:35 Apr 12
MacBeth: *Smirks a bit.* You couldn’t get through the front door with Flyboy, eh? -03:37 Apr 12

Duncan: *Comes up from behind Bronwen.* No … *He says, although he isn’t exactly sorry he couldn’t get her through. She’s mighty rough with that leash.* Hey, Mac, you wouldn’t happen to be popular with ol’ Morgan, would ya?

Bronwen: *Her hands rest on her hips as she cast him a scowl.* You knew I wouldn’t, did you? *Duncan went ahead and voiced her thoughts… She elbowed him in the gut!* We don’t want MacBeth biting off more than he can chew. -03:39 Apr 12
MacBeth: *The smirk doesn’t leave his face.* Heh. I had a feeling. *He glances up at Flyboy.* More popular than you, less popular than the Cap’n here, if you want to know. *He stands.* Come on. I can rest when we get Cassius out of here. The more we talk about this, the longer it’ll take. -03:41 Apr 12
Bronwen: *He didn’t have to be so smug about it, but a good idea was a good idea. Bronwen leashed her new captive, returned her helmet over her head and at least this time wasn’t so rough. She didn’t want to strangle him.* -03:43 Apr 12

Duncan: *Phew. This was one time he didn’t envy Mac. He drops into the seat, grateful he was spared from taking part in this little adventure. He salutes.* I’ll be right here, waitin’ for you, Cap’n.

Bronwen: You better ready to fly with the hounds of hell on our tails, Duncan. *And with that, she drug her new captive away!* -03:47 Apr 12
MacBeth: *Follows after Shadowstar. He’s not too keen on being at this place again. But anywhere Morgan led was a place he didn’t want to be.* -03:50 Apr 12

A different guard halts the two this time. He seems older than the first and gets right down to things. “Halt. I.D. and business.”

Bronwen: *Bronwen replied in that other language… without any sass! Mercenary Dunbron here with a bounty, a fine little bounty.* -03:56 Apr 12

The guard moves and looks over Mac. He prods him with the butt of his gun, taking note of Mac clenching his jaw and not making a peep. “Hm.” He pulls something out of his belt. A portable computer that fits in his hand. “Computer, analyze captive.” The computer’s screen lights up. “Computer. Analyzing. Subject MacBeth. Status: Deserter. Last known position: First mate to Shadowstars.” The guard turns the computer off. “A traitor.” He gestures to the door. “Entrance granted. Drop him off down at the Cell-block and pick up your reward.”

Bronwen: *A nod of her head was all it took. She jerked her captive along! Ohoho.. MacBeth was so useful! She’ll give him a long long vacation!* -04:05 Apr 12
[Bronwen heads towards the cell blocks with her bounty in tow! Poor MacBeth!] -03:24 Jun 02
[MacBeth is taking this all in stride for a wounded guy being brought in.] -03:25 Jun 02

The two of them finally get to a small room where a man behind a counter and some armed men wait. He motions for Bronwen to approach, already typing something up on the small notebook-sized device in his hand. “State your name and captive’s name.”

Bronwen: *Twitching fingers, this was always the best part about sneaking in places.* Freelancer Dunbron. This here is MacBeth. A little treat for Morgan, if I do say so myself. -03:28 Jun 02

The man doesn’t even glance up from his device. “MacBeth, eh? Yes, we got word about him.” Tap. Tap tap on the screen. He gestures to the men beside him who approach. “Leave MacBeth with us and here is your credit.” Something pops out of the slot at the top of the device and he hands it over to Bronwen. A shiny plastic card filled with the credits for MacBeth’s capture.

Bronwen: *She took the credits and eyed them carefully. Now it was going to be tricky.* Going to throw him in with that Shadowstar chump, or do you not keep those high profile bits of meat down here in the cell blocks? -03:37 Jun 02

The man still doesn’t glance up from his device. “We already have orders about this man.” He turns to the men who grab Mac. “Throw him with our little ‘guest’ until we get further instructions.” The men nod and escort Mac out of the room. However, they don’t go through the door behind the counter to the cell block and they don’t take the door Mac and Bronwen came through. They go through a side door requiring a special card key to get into.

Bronwen: *They didn’t make these things easy did they. She took a look over her shoulder to survey the room, a small peek to see just how easy it would be for the guy to call for help and…. bribed!* Y’know, I might be willing to hand over a few of these credits if you let me back there to finish pummeling that asshat. He took a good chunk out of my ship I’m looking for payback… -03:48 Jun 02

The man finally does look up, looking at Bronwen warily. He could always use some credits. Morgan wasn’t the best employer and as long as the guy was breathing … Besides he was already screwed up. A few more injuries wouldn’t be easy to spot … “How much of those credits?”

Bronwen: 25% if I can break some bones. Promise I won’t crack him up beyond repair. *She almost wished she weren’t disguised as a man and wearing that helmet, cause she could flash one mean looking grin!* -03:54 Jun 02

25% was a nice chunk … but why stop there? “Fifty percent.”

Bronwen: I got a ship to fix, you son of a- …. 30% and I get to cut off a finger. -03:58 Jun 02

“Forty-five percent.”

Bronwen: *She deliberated a bit.. Greedy bastard, she ought to shoot him in the face and just steal his key card.* It’s a deal. -04:01 Jun 02

The man doesn’t allow himself a smug grin. No, he was too professional for that. On cue, the two guards who took Mac away return and the man dismisses them for a bit. As soon as they’re gone, he motions for the credits. “I’ll take my cut now. I transfer my share to me while you go, do whatever you have to. You can get the rest when you return.”

Bronwen: *Bronwen scowled under that helmet of hers. He was probably going to steal the whole pot, and then get her thrown in the cell block. Luckily, she was leaving this joint with her boys soon enough! She forked over the card.* Don’t be getting in mad ideas about taking more than your share. Now open this here door. -04:08 Jun 02

The man takes the card and forces Bronwen to wait as he slips the card back into the slot. He taps in a few things and then places it on the desk, probably as it transfers the credits. Then he steps forward and pulls his card key out. “Of course not, of course not …” He opens the first door for her and then hands the key to her. “There are a handful of doors between here and there. I am quite sure you can handle whatever comes in between.”

Bronwen: *Oh nice, the searching maze game.* Aye. I can. *Bronwen runs the keycard and slips through the doors!* -04:13 Jun 02

Cassius: *Meanwhile, poor Cassius is sitting locked away in what they have generously reffered to as a ‘room’ and is busy zapping some poor little machinery to death. It’s going to work, or he’s going to blow up this hole space station in the process.*

MacBeth: *Groans softly from the floor after being tossed into the room and left here. He gets to his feet and looks around. Machines, parts, everywhere. It’s a miracle when he can move around enough to start searching for anyone.* -04:17 Jun 02

Cassius: *Of course, he assumes it’s guards bringing him more scraps for Morgan’s insane invention ideas, so he’s surprised to hear a groan from the floor. He glances over his shoulder with a sautering iron in hand and appears stunned!* …. MacBeth?

MacBeth: *Grins a bit sheepishly which, on MacBeth, makes him seem a lot younger all of a sudden.* Long time no see, eh, Cassie? -04:21 Jun 02

Cassius: *Cassius gave a churlish scowl and shook the sautering iron at him.* I told you not to call me Cassie, or I’d knock your block off. So I see your luck finally ran out, and Mad Morgan finally got the best of you, eh?

MacBeth: *Rotates one shoulder and then the other.* Quite the opposite actually. I told you Shadowstars were trouble. And I’m living proof. *He starts glancing around.* I don’t suppose you have a gun or something hidden away around here. -04:28 Jun 02

Cassius: *He blinked before he let out a round of roaring laughter!* You got some fool plan of busting me out, don’t you? I knew you’d lose it! Crashing right in to one o’ Morgan’s lairs. As a matter of fact, no, I don’t have any weapons lying around here, but I do have a mighty fine toaster that can cook us both up nice and crispy if I turn the button just right.

MacBeth: *Arches an eyebrow at him.* Not me. Your sister. And you can keep the toaster. My brain is already nice and crispy. -04:31 Jun 02

Cassius: Brownie? Ha, she’s haa.. huwah? *Suddenly as his laughing he started, his jaw dropped and he was staring blankly.* ….you’re screwing with me.

MacBeth: Stands yay high. *He puts his hand up to where Bronwen roughly stands.* Sharp tongue. No common sense whatsoever. Not to mention trigger-happy and gun-ho. -04:37 Jun 02

Cassius: …And you brought her HERE?! *It was lucky that Cassius wasn’t looking to beat a man when they were about to escape, though right about now he was thinking about taking up a violet swing!* Damnit, man! Couldn’t you have put a muzzle on her and locked her in a cargo container?!

MacBeth: Gee, why didn’t I think of that? *He finds a crate and clears it so he can sit down on it.* -04:44 Jun 02

Cassius: Shitcakes and hellfire! Don’t go sitting down now, we’ve got to get out of here before one of them goons catches wind of this crackpot jailbreak. *Cassius threw his sauter iron down on the table… then yanked it back up again. Along with that bit of machinery he was working on.* …Although on the pluside, we get to test this thing out.

MacBeth: Oh yes. Test it out and see what gets blown up. Us or the door. *He mutters. Somehow, Morgan’s forces seemed that much more appealing.* -04:48 Jun 02
Bronwen: *Speaking of the door.. it swung open! Aiming a massive gun, and looking ever so dramatic. She absolutely loved it. Bronwen pulled off that pesky helmet, grinning like the cat that ate the canary.* ….Christ all mighty, you look OLD Cassius. -04:51 Jun 02
MacBeth: Two Shadowstars reunited. Touching. Save the reunion for when we’re away from this hellhole. *He growls, heading for the doors.* -04:55 Jun 02

Cassius: *He looked as stunned as a man could look. He shook his sauter iron at her too.* Red-headed maniac! You’re lucky MacBeth is right, I’m gonna *grummblegrummblecursethreat* and don’t you pull that grinning shit with me. *He lept off his chair, machine and iron in hand and stalked for the door. Not hesitating to grab his sister’s gun and march out after MacBeth.*

MacBeth: *Marches through every door that Bronwen had left open until he reaches the first one. He surprises the man with the credits and knocks him out before he can even think of calling on reinforcements. Then he digs around the desk until he finds a single firearm. Not a rifle, to be sure, and not very powerful but a weapon nonetheless.* -05:01 Jun 02
Bronwen: *Bronwen continued her grinning- until he snatched her gun.* Fine way to say thanks for saving your behind from that saggy-tit whore. *Of course, Bronwen had a backup gun and had it out in an instant. ….As well as pilfering her well-earned credits off that baffoon MacBeth knocked out.* … We should steal his clothes and stuff Cassius’s fathead in to my helmet. -05:03 Jun 02
MacBeth: I assume you’re not suggesting we steal his clothes just because you don’t like the poor fellow. -05:08 Jun 02

Cassius: *Cassius grunted as he snatched the helmet out of her hands and stuffed it over his head. It was a tight squeeze.. Uncomfortably tight, but he wasn’t going to mention that. The voice disguise mechanism, he found much too amusing.* That’s exactly what she had in mind. Let’s get going before some shmuck walks in here.

Bronwen: *She cast MacBeth a wicked look.* That’s just a bonus reason. Now, make yourself not look like you, so we can walk out of here before Cassius has a heart attack! -05:14 Jun 02
MacBeth: Fine fine. *He goes digging into the desk again and finds a large drawer with a guard’s uniform. He cleans his face as best as he can before replacing his shirt with the guard’s black jacket and cap. He arranges the jacket and cap and straightens his pants well enough to pass for a guard.* -05:16 Jun 02
Bronwen: Now, follow me, boys. *A wicked grin and a bit of hair mussing to hide her face, she leads the way out. As long as they don’t look suspicious and walk quick, they’ll make it back to Duncan with time to spare!* -05:21 Jun 02

Cassius: *He shook his head, but followed his crazy sister. Leading MacBeth around by nose, she was, no doubt!* Though a man might’ve known better than to listen to this one, after all we told ya. *He grunted!*

MacBeth: Next time you give a man advice about a female sibling, how about including the instruction manual along with it? * He mutters back, behind Cassius.* -05:32 Jun 02

Cassius: Don’t know how hard “Keep Brownie out of trouble.” could be for a man like yourself. She’s about the size of a pixie. *Grumbles Cassius back.*

MacBeth: Trouble. You mean trouble incarnate. It’s attracted to her. *He mutters back.* -05:41 Jun 02
Bronwen: I can hear you two. -05:41 Jun 02

They reach the outside but then notice that everyone is standing at attention. And every entrance/exit is blocked. As they search for a way out, the way they’d come into the stronghold opens to admit a man who is obviously in charge, escorted by a group of men more heavily armed than any they’d come across until now. “Quickly. Bring me the Shadowstar.” The trio are forced to duck into a corner to contemplate a plan.

Cassius: Clever planning, Brownie. You got an army ready to jump in and save us? *Growled, Cassius… but then he suddenly had an idea! He started tinkering with his little machine.*

MacBeth: *Glances at Cassius. If he was the religious type, he’d probably be praying right about now. He even thinks about it as he stands and acts natural.* -05:50 Jun 02
Bronwen: *Well, shit! So much for underestimating Morgan’s goons!* I’ve got a Duncan, but he ain’t much use. *Running out and shooting, as fun as it sounded, wouldn’t be a good idea… Maybe if they found and engineers tunnel, or crawled in the air ducts, or-…Oh god, Cassius had a toaster!* What are you doing with that?! *She hiiissed!* -05:52 Jun 02

Cassius: *Not looking up, he was pulling a screwdriver and a pair of pliers out of his pockets to make a few adjustments.* It’s a distraction. Shut up and give me a minute. *He tugs out a few wires and the thing starts ticking and glowing.*

Suddenly a voice rings out. “You there! You! In the back!” At first, it’s easy to ignore but then the guards turn to look at Mac still in his guard’s uniform. Fortunately Bronwen and Cassius are hidden by the shadows. “Yes, you! Go with the others and fetch Shadowstar at once!” Mac had only two options find a way out or play it safe for now.

MacBeth: Yes, sir. *He salutes. When the other guards turn away for a bit, he glances at the Shadowstars.* Get out of here. I’ll meet you at Dion’s place. *And then he marches through the line and follows everyone else back into the stronghold.* -06:02 Jun 02
Bronwen: *Her jaw dropped via a very Cassius-like expression! He can’t just march off with them guards, he was going to get- Damnit, he did it anyway! Bronwen scowled!* Get that thing working quick! -06:04 Jun 02

Cassius: I can only work as fast as – Got it! *Cassius latched it’s cover back on and set his little toaster on the ground. It sprouted a set of wheels and started rolling on down the hall, around the corner and way out in to the main sector with a nice big group of men.* Get ready to run.

Duncan: *Meanwhile, Duncan was kicking back in the cockpit, having a pleasurable time of dozing off, daydreaming, and dozing off again. Oh yeah. He should be pathetic more often, especially if it means getting out of doing something dangerous.*

There’s not much time to question, as by the time the little rolling toaster makes it way in to the middle of the room there’s a sudden ginormous BOOM! Quite an impressive explosion! Not much fire and bloody death, but it was sure to send people and things flying in a shocking display of chaos!

Bronwen: Moving! *Bronwen grasped Cassius by the collar of his shirt, and ran! While everyone was good and put-off by that blast she ran with Cassius back for the ship!* -06:12 Jun 02

Duncan: *The impact of the explosion literally knocks Duncan out of his seat! He lands with a heavy THUD! on the floor but as soon as he realizes it was an explosion, he jumps into his seat and starts the ship up. He’s about to escape–without even waiting for Bronwen or Mac!*

MacBeth: *As he follows behind, the explosion stops all activity to get Cassius. The visiting commander barks out orders and sends the men scrambling until only he and Mac are left in the cell block room.* -06:15 Jun 02
Bronwen: That man better not be- *Whether or not she was talking about Duncan or MacBeth it was unknown! She did, take a moment to shoot the first and hopefully only idiot in the docking bay that thought he recognized a Shadowstar and chase down her ship.. that was getting ready to leave without them!* Sonofabitch DUNCAN! -06:19 Jun 02

The visiting commander then goes through the handful of open doors to Cassius’ cell. When he discovers Cassius not to be inside, he mutters something under his breath and turns–

Duncan: C’mon, baby! Take Daddy home! *He murmurs as he presses buttons, flips switches, and pulls on the controls. The ship was purring but she wasn’t moving!*

MacBeth: *He slams his fist into the commander’s face and crackles his knuckles as the commander hits the ground! He searches him for something, pockets what he finds and heads for the door.* -06:22 Jun 02

Cassius: Don’t you have communicater links?! You staged a rescue without coms?! *Clearly, they were going to be captured and die. This was MacBeth’s fault for listening to his sister.*

Bronwen: Of course I d- Shit. *She turned quickly to snatch the helmet off Cassius’ head and stuff it back on her own, pressing a button at the side.* Duncan! Duncan don’t you dare take off without us! Open the doors before I cannon them open! -06:25 Jun 02

Duncan: *Stops in the middle of trying to work his ship and whips his head around.* Cap’n? Hey! Don’t hurt my baby! *He quickly flicks the switch to open the door for her and waits on trying to fly out just yet.*

Bronwen: *Dragging Cassius like a dog, she flung off her helmet as soon as the boarded the ship!* We can’t leave yet! Macbeth is out there playing hopscotch with the guards. -06:28 Jun 02

Cassius: He said he’d meet us at Dion. If we don’t fly out of here soon, we won’t be able to leave the station!

Bronwen: He’s not going to be able to leave the station if we take off without him! We’re not leaving until he’s on this ship. -06:32 Jun 02

Duncan: Um … I don’t know who he is. But I totally agree. MacBeth is a grown man and can take care of himself. If he said he’s going to meet us somewhere, then who are we to judge?

Bronwen: …I’ll judge you a punch in the face if you don’t do as I say, that’s what! -06:34 Jun 02

Cassius: *Cassius wisely, or perhaps not so wisely, headlocked his sister under an arm and slapped a hand over her mouth. Biting, kicking and all.* Cassius Shadowstar, and new captain of this ship. Take off now, before we lose our opening.

Duncan: *Instantly quells!* Uh … Carry on then! I um, see no harm in just … waiting … *He starts tapping his feet restlessly.* To die …

Duncan: *Doesn’t have to tell him twice! Gee, why hadn’t he thought to do that once or twice! He starts that ship up and gets her up and away without a moment’s hesitation!*

The muzzle of a large gun greets Mac at the door and beyond that, an ugly face he could stand to be without. “Look what the Shadowstar dragged in …”

Bronwen: *He was her brother, and that was the only damned reason she wasn’t pulling a gun on him. But that didn’t stop her from landing an elbow to his balls and kicking him when he hit the floor!* Damn it, this is my ship and I’ll give the god damned orders! -06:39 Jun 02
MacBeth: *Raises his hands and starts walking out of the cell block while he thinks of a plan. Meanwhile, personnel were running back and forth to tend to the explosion and the general chaos.* -06:42 Jun 02

Cassius: *Cassius was practically rolling in the floor. Should’veseenthatcomingshould’veseenthatcoming!* he’s a… grown man… brownie… Uuggh…

The man holding Mac at gunpoint was one of the men who escorted the commander here. No sign of the rest of his squad as they come in sight to the door to the outside.

Bronwen: In Mad Morgan Fortress of Terror that four Shadowstar men couldn’t even get someone out of! *She turned to stare at Duncan!* Now, if you’re so damned scared of dying you can just fly me on back and drop me off. I can save that idiot and steal a damned ship to escape, myself. -06:46 Jun 02

Duncan: Now, technically … I’m just watching out for myself. No sense in trying to rescue someone when it’ll only result in suicide. And … I need you to pay for the repairs for my ship.

Cassius: *Now that he got the wind back in his body, he was quickly staggering to his feet.* The man talks sense, Brownie. We can wait a ways out and see if he escaped, and if he hasn’t we can go back for him when it’s not likely to get us all killed! It was suicide enough busting in there once!

MacBeth: *Only one chance for this. He suddenly trips and finds that he has trouble getting up from the floor!* -06:52 Jun 02
Bronwen: *Bronwen growled, pulling up her gun looking perfectly prepared to shoot Duncan with it if he didn’t do as she said! She finally shoved it violently back in her belt and stalked out.* Fine! We do it your way. -06:53 Jun 02

“Get up!” the guard growls and grabs him by the shoulder. He turns Mac over and for his trouble, gets a gun in his face and a new hole in his head. Fortunately, the din from outside is enough to muffle the noise. Just to be on the safe side though, Mac wastes no time in dragging the guard into the closest room or closet.*

Cassius: *Rubbing his head with an exasperated sigh, he watched her leave. She was going to pay him back for that later, he just knew it!* Uhkay…. If you can park us somewhere out in space that’s a safe distance, I can get to work on something to catch transmission signals. If they capture MacBeth, they’re bound to transmit out and let Morgan know. Then we’ll… think of something.

Duncan: *Gulps. Man, that was close! Way too close! This was the last time he ever serves under a female captain. Mark his words! He nods.* Will do. *Safe distance. Music to his ears.*

Cassius: *His hand moved down to rub his chin, as he was deep in thought.* She hasn’t shot you yet. That’s a good sign. Looked like she did a number on MacBeth, though. She give him all them scrapes and bruises?

Duncan: You have no idea how close I keep coming to that, man. *He shakes his head.* Ah … Those were from these strange alien dudes him and the Cap’n took down. They’re blinkin’ nuts, I tell you.

MacBeth: *Pokes his head out of the small room and looks around. It’s hard to figure whether he should be glad or worried that the place has gone so quiet. But he has no idea if reinforcements are on their way or if the station itself is going to blow sky high.* Thanks a lot, Cassie. -07:10 Jun 02
Bronwen: *Bronwen was seethingly angry and trying to reign it all in before she did something she might regret later. Like gutting her own brother and kicking Duncan out the garbage shaft. That traitor! If he thinks he’s got a new captain just because Cassius in on board, he’s got another thing comin’… And if she weren’t worried about all the horrible things Morgan could do to MacBeth, she’d be plotting some good revenge about now!* -07:10 Jun 02
MacBeth: *Figures that everyone is either trying to loot the place, getting off this dump, or already gotten out of here by now. There should still be a few ships around here but more likely than not, they were in good need of repair. And he didn’t have time for that.* -07:13 Jun 02

Cassius: MacBeth and Brownie, that had to be a sight. *Cassius wasn’t sure if he were amused or horrified at the thought. So, he pulled his tools out of his pockets and knealt down at the control panel to work on getting the system able to spy on local transmissions. An simple, but messy job!*

MacBeth: *Think, Mac, think. There was always a way out of a mess. He heads for the hangar. Perhaps some poor soul forgot his ship or something and wouldn’t mind if it got "borrowed" for a bit.* -07:17 Jun 02

Duncan: Brownie …? *He sighs and shakes his head. Somehow he just couldn’t see a connection between such an adorable nickname and his hot but insane captain. The hot, insane captain that was going to flog his hide very soon!*

Cassius: Brownie. Because she’s so sweet. *Cassius snorted at his own joke.* Dion couldn’t say her name right, and it stuck. *He glanced from outside the controls and frowned.* You’re not thinking my little sister is hot, are you?

Duncan: *Blinks!* Hot?! Ah, no! Of course not! I mean, she’s beautiful, yes–but I could … *He quickly shakes his head.* I could never think of her–you know, that way …

MacBeth: *As he approaches the hangar, one ship in particular catches his eye. As he gets closer and closer to it, he can make out the details. Sleek, and small, black, like an ancient bullet. A mercury-class cruiser said to be impossible to catch in open space. And the markings along the side, red claw marks and at the end the name in fancy script: eresia. The first half is worn away. He recognizes the ship!* Du–!! *Something comes swinging out of nowhere to send him flying. He hits the ground with a THUD! and shakes himself out of it.* -07:30 Jun 02

Cassius: Liar. *Cassius returned to his working, rewiring some of the transmission controls and looping them to new switches on the main control panels.* I’d like to see my sister settled down and get married. You the marrying type, Duncan?

Duncan: *Gulps again. This is thin ice!* Uh … Sure, if I uh … met the right woman. I mean, not to say your sister isn’t everything a man could hope for but um … you know, someone who is uh … compatible with me …

The brown clad figure sporting the cannon-like firearm slung over his shoulder grins down at him. “Hello there, MacBeth. Fancy meeting you here.”

MacBeth: *Gets to his feet and rubs his jaw. It hurts like hell but it doesn’t feel like anything is broken. Although he’s surprised that swinging cannon hadn’t taken off half his head with it.* Yeah, same here. -07:34 Jun 02

Cassius: I’m thinkinga man needs a good woman who knows her way around a ship, and has good family blood. …I got the panel ready to start reading signals. *Cassius crawled back up to his feet, stuffing his tools back in to his pocket. He flipped a switch on the top panel, allowing the sounds of various transmissions to start buzzing through the com.*

Duncan: Uh yeah … Exactly! Um, excuse me for a moment. *He takes this opportunity to steal away to some back room where he can put these thoughts of marriage–marriage of all things!–behind him!*

Bronwen: *Bronwen had had enough of waiting, and she was stalking back to the control room, only to nearly run in to Dunca whom seemed to be fleeing!* What’s the matter with you?! -07:38 Jun 02

Duncan: Nothing! Nothing! Can’t a man just … want to go into the back room and uh … rest a bit! *He says, appearing even more highstrung than usual just before locking himself in his room.*

“Imagine my surprise when I find in the hunters’ log that someone has already claimed your bounty. And what are the chances of you being brought to this very place where I happened to be taking a rest stop?” He suddenly launches forward and swings the cannon again as if it was nothing but a golf club.

Bronwen: …. Cassius! What did you do to my Duncan? *She entered the control room, tilting her head at the random transmission sounds. Hmm… some sounded like intermissions for Morgan’s space fortress. Maybe Cassius had a good idea there somewhere…* -07:42 Jun 02
MacBeth: *For a man of his size, slightly larger than Mac, wielding a weapon like that, he moves awfully fast! Mac takes a step back and leans backwards to dodge the first swing. When the man swings back again, he drops into a squatting position and then rolls out of the way.* -07:42 Jun 02

Cassius: I asked him if he was interested in marrying you. *He dropped in to the pilot’s chair and was trying to focus his attention on the transmissions.* Your Duncan, huh?

Bronwen: My Duncan, my MacBeth, and my ship. …Did that nonsense actually work? He looked like he was ready to jump out a window. *Maybe she’ll propose to him next time he gets fresh! That ought to scare him!* -07:44 Jun 02

The man doesn’t seem to be in a hurry in the least bit. It’s as if he’s treating this all like a game. “How would you like to be taken to Morgan? Dead or alive?”

MacBeth: Not at all. Thanks. *He mutters, getting into a defensive stance. Mercenaries. They were almost as bad as Shadowstars.* -07:47 Jun 02
[Bronwen was having a conversation with her brother…] -02:40 Jun 03
[MacBeth was a bit preoccupied to look for an escape.] -02:41 Jun 03

The man chuckles. “Your wit has not changed in the least.”

Cassius: Shush, I’m listening for news on MacBeth. *He waved a dismissive hand at her as he leaned closed to one of the control speakers.*

MacBeth: And you’re just as ugly as ever. *What a time to be without a gun!* -02:43 Jun 03

The man’s grin fades and he suddenly charges forward. This time he’s much faster than the last and he catches Mac in the gut with the cannon. As soon as Mac doubles over, his elbow goes up and comes slamming down on the part of Mac’s back where his neck meets his shoulders. Mac lands with a THUD! He looks down at him and touches the ear piece at his ear. “This is Duff McRaven. Lady Morgan, I have a little prize for you …”

“This is a classified frequency. How did you hack into it?” a voice cackles over the earpiece.

McRaven smirks. “Does it matter? You might not have the little Shadowstar bastard anymore but perhaps a little consolation prize is in order. I believe you’ve been looking for a certain deserter. MacBeth.”

Bronwen: *Bronwen opened her mouth to ask exactly how he pulled that off but-* I heard his name! What the hell did that say?! -02:49 Jun 03

Cassius: Shut up a damned minute! *Cassius adjusted the setting buttons for the transmissions to focus in on the right one!*

MacBeth: *Groans softly but doesn’t move. That last blow hurt like hell. Although the blow to his gut hadn’t been very easy to shake off, either.* -02:50 Jun 03

Silence. “MacBeth, eh …” It is difficult to tell whether the voice is interested in him or not. “He … may … prove useful. I will give you every credit of his bounty. Where are you?”

“Now, now …” Seeing his little bounty stirring, he walks up to him and places the cannon against his back. The message is clear one move and there’d be a rather large hole in his body. “You can play your mind-games all you like but I know the company he keeps makes him worth more than his bounty. I want ten times his current bounty. And not a single coin less.”

Again, silence. “Very well. I like your style, Mr. McRaven. Ten times his current bounty. I want him in perfect condition, though. Not a single hair on his head harmed. If I’m going to pay so much, I want him to be worth it.”

The mercenary smirks. “Of course. Where would you like me to bring him?”

Bronwen: *Bronwen crossed her arms, scowling as she listened to the crackling transmission. What’s Morgan want, a new manly love slave? Eeyyuch!* What kind of stupid name is McRaven. *She muttered to herself.* -02:58 Jun 03

“Planet Grecia in the Delta Ora system. The city of Danaris. We can arrange a meeting once you arrive.” And suddenly the voice is gone and the transmission is over.

Cassius: Sounds like Morgan is on vacation. *Cassius was already keying in the data, flipping the com switch for Duncan.* Hey flyboy, we’re ready to move out. We need to get to Grecia and pickup a package.

Bronwen: I should have put a tracker on him. How are we supposed to find him when we get in Danaris? If we ask too many questions, some one is going to tip off Morgan. -03:12 Jun 03

Duncan: *Pokes his head out and finally walks out as if sensing it’s “all clear” from talk of marriage.* Package, huh? I think our little baby here can get us through. *He plops down into the pilot’s seat.* Isn’t that right? *He pats the control panel as he gets the ship running.*

Cassius: I’ll think of something when we get there. We sure as hell ain’t pulling no crackpot rescues like you did back there. *He eyed his sister with a concerned big brother scowl.* Morgan’s likely going to stay at her fancy smancy hotel.

Bronwen: *She gave a slow mischevious grin.* Really. Perhaps I’ll pay Morgan a short visit and introduce her to one of your exploding toasters. -03:16 Jun 03

Duncan: *Sweatdrops but keeps himself busy with the ship. He was going to get killed for sure and his poor ship … it was going to the scrap heap!*

Cassius: Teah that sounds like a great idea. Waltz in to another of Morgan’s fortresses and find yourself iced again, or worse! Shot full of holes. Then where will Duncan be. Up the creek without a wife.

Duncan: *So much for everything being clear! He hunches over the control panel and tries to make himself seem smaller.*

Bronwen: Hardy har har. Seriously, then. How to get in there and intercept McRaven without getting recognized before Mac ends up Morgan’s playtoy? I’m running out of disguises. -03:26 Jun 03

Duncan: Um … There’s a place all the mercs and bounty hunters go to sort of hang out and refuel. Chances are, McRaven will go there first before he gets to Danaris.

Cassius: *Cassius grinned, motioning his hands in Duncan’s direction.* There we go. A brilliant idea. As for disguises we’ll try something that isn’t so obviously…. Bronwenish. Really, Brownie… an alien bounty hunter? Even a two year old could see through that one.

Bronwen: What?! Duncan fell for it! Didn’t you Duncan? It’s an ace disguise! -03:32 Jun 03

Duncan: *Speechless! He’s not the smartest guy to grace the galaxy but he knows better than to get into this one!* Um … uh … *He pretends to be occupied with something on the control panel.*

Cassius: Duncan doesn’t know you like I know you, and Morgan’s massivly trained Shadowstar killing fleet of assassins know you. *Grinning still, he rocked back and forth on his heels.* You’ll like my idea, Brownie. It’s a killer.

Bronwen: I think I’m going to hate it. *She was crossing her arms again. But she wanted Mac back safe and sound, and Cassius DID know a lot more about Morgan’s goonery than she did…* Hrrmph. Stop your yammering and lets get to work, then. Fly faster, Duncan! *She spat out before leading the way down the hall.* -03:44 Jun 03

Duncan: Uh … Ye–Yes, Cap’n! *He turns his attention back to flying. Phew! Maybe now he could get a break from this talk of marriage and such!*

Cassius: *Cassius pat Duncan’s shoulder consolingly.* ‘Course this disguise means she’ll prolly end up marrying some shlub we meat in Danaris, but I’ll try to put in a good word for you. *Chuckling under his breath, he left poor Duncan be, so he could work his magic!*

“Come on, Mackie. Don’t look so glum. You’re about to be reunited with Lady Morgan herself.” McRaven shackles Mac up and leads him into the small little hole reserved for prisoners.

MacBeth: *Turns when they get to the little hole to face McRaven. His wrists are bound behind his back.* Yeah. By the very man who swore to never work for her again. What happened, Duff? Did the promise you made at your son’s side at his last breath suddenly lose meaning? -03:51 Jun 03

CRUNCH! THUD!

MacBeth: *Falls to the ground when a punch catches him squarely in the jaw! His head hits the wall with a bang and throbs with an unholy ache!* -03:52 Jun 03

“Never mention my son again.” Then the door slams shut and the locks are activated, leaving Mac alone.

By Diala

Alarice and Diana have a severe addiction to Oracle, while running naked through Shadowstar, Desire of the Deep and anything else they dip their hands in to.

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