(To the tune of: Rule of Nines – Spiritbox)
Centuries ago, when the Sage Three ruled with an iron fist...
A corvette floated in empty space, somewhere in the Insanus galaxy. Most of the ship was powered down, and the cargo hold was empty. On the exterior, the name “FREEDOM LIGHTER” was inscribed in simple print. The ship was warm, uncomfortably so. An airlock opened, steam and sweat escaping into the open hair. A man, giggling, exited, pulling on a pair of pants as he did so.
“-not like you, the heat bothers me.” He was calling back, laughing. From the doorway was dispensed a boot, flying high. The man ducked and it collided with the wall behind him.
“Missed!” He shouted back, a second too late as a second boot landed lightly, richocheting against his hip.
“Check the damn comms!” A voice whispered from within, stifling laugher.
“Yes, yes, whatever you say.”
The man made his way through the darkened ship, hopping on one foot as he placed his boots on. Every step he took, another compartment lit up automatically. He exits the halls and enters a wide room with a long table. As the room lights up, one of the walls opens, and various appliances activate. Steam emerges as a fresh cup of caffeine is being brewed. The man snatches a tank top off the table- which has various garments strewn about, and pulls it over his head.
“Good morning, FL.” The man declares. A bagel fires from the now-exposed wall, and he catches it instinctively. “Nice shot.” A brief chime calls over the intercom as a synthetic voice speaks up.
“Good morning Captain. I’d prefer my original designation.” Taking quick bites of the hot bagel, the tall sculpted man grabbed the hot cup from the automatic dispenser.
“Oh, come on darlin’, I don’t want to have this fight again.”
“Freedom Lighter is not my original designation, Captain.”
“As Captain, I have the authority to assign new designations.”
A brief pause. A new chime.
“The Captain did not assign the new designation.”
The man opened another airlocked door, revealing the small, two-seater cockpit of the vessel. Taking a seat and acknowledging the dash display, he sighs, taking another bite of his bagel while speaking with a mouth full.
“Look, Computer, it was her idea, but I chose it.”
Chime, and reply: “Biorhythm signs indicate this to be deceptive.” The man stopped chewing. Under his breath, he muttered, “I didn’t know you could do-“
Chime: “Captain, we’ve worked together for several years. I have learned both of your fondness for deception and some of your biorhythm patterns. This one prefers their original designation.”
The man stared wordlessly at his dash, frozen in mid chew. A voice came from the mess hall.
“Nails! Have you checked the comms yet?” snapping his head back, Captain Nails spotted his lover pulling clothing off the table. A short woman with well-tanned skin stood on one foot, the other up near her hip and she tried to pull on an errant stocking that had been hanging off the chair. She was naked save for a large watch-like piece of technology on her wrist. A bagel fired at her; gabby caught it while simultaneously giving a final tug on her stocking. “Nails!”
Distracted by the view, Nails snapped back to attention.
“Yep, communication received. Computer, display in the mess hall.”
“What is this one’s original designation?” the familiar voice chimed in; this time isolated to the cockpit.
“Not now…” Nails muttered under his breath.
“Fine! Grace Sonata! Would you please display communication to the mess hall?”
“With pleasure, Captain.” The voice chirped happily.
At this point, Gabby had pulled on another stocking, ate half a bagel, and was in the process of lacing up her tall canvas Zonverse boots. A projector attempted to display from the table, but its lens was obscured by the cup of a bra draped haphazardly over it. Gabby pulled it free, tossing it recklessly away. An image filled the room of a cloaked figure, Gabby wasn’t sure she could make out any of the face. The image was distorted, and the voice crackled and hissed with static.
“…I’ve heard you have a talent for destruction and a grudge to settle with dictators. I happen to serve one of the worst of them.” A new image overtook the old. A woman beamed from the projector, pink haired, with wings unfurled.
“…My Mistress, Hikaru Tyris. I have long wished to break free of her rule, but her power is overwhelming. I’m not sure of anyone who can truly best her. But I’ve been told you may have your ways.”
Gabby, still mostly nude, munched absentmindedly on the remains of the bagel as she listened to the prerecorded message. Nails took a seat next to her, taking careful notes on a keyboard projected onto the table.
“I have bided my time, but just yesterday, she went beyond the pale. She caught wind that somebody intended to escape, or challenge her in some way. This was her response.”
The image shifted again, showing a recording that had almost definitely been taken in secret. If Hikaru had been watching the recording, she would note it was captured from exactly where Purple Thumb had been standing.
"This thinking is dangerous, and can lead to very severe consequences..." a chilling voice declared. Gabby eagerly watched the pink haired woman’s next move.