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 Surrounded by Water (Both Parts of Two)

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Number of posts : 1324
Age : 59
Location : Ringgold, Louisiana
Current Mood :
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Surrounded by Water (Both Parts of Two)   January 18th 2013, 5:52 pm

A Fight for Recognition
Story Twenty-Seven: Part One
Surrounded by Water

There was no real reason that things needed to happen the way they were happening. I had the most equipment. Truthfully, I had the only equipment. Sherita had her shoes and bike, but that really did not fall into the category of equipment. You could place my wings in the same category as her bike, but I needed special instruments to charge my wings. Those one had to admit were equipment. Still, they were not large or numerous. We could have done things differently.

A frigate carried the others over along with our gear and equipment. I rode with a Captain Ronalds in my plane. I had released my technology, but it was being studied instead of duplicated. I regularly received communications from graduate students in physics who suddenly found something of worth to do their thesis work upon. I was nice to them, but I had released my work with clear rules of non-disclosure. I thus would not answer most questions, but had to direct the people to the companies who had the rights to my technology. Captain Ronalds just happened to be lucky enough to be in the right branch of the military with the right skills at the right time. He also had the good fortune to be handling the one piece of my technology not fully designed by me. My plane had some really unusual features, but it still had familiar controls. Unlike my wings, most working to learn my toys could easily adapt to operating my plane. It thus flew to our destination while all the rest of the superheroes and their stuff were carried by the frigate.

“This is wild,” Captain Ronalds said. “I have landed on a carrier before, but this is much different. I mean, we can simply land.”

“You know the drill,” I replied. “The plane is extremely light compared to other planes. Thus, wind and the rocking of the carrier can pose a problem. While you might not land it like the other planes, you must still be careful.”

“Yes, Sir. Still, this is cool.”

“Won’t argue with you there.”

I doubt that I could have done a better landing. Considering it was my first time, I probably would have done a roll or something just to show off. I saw from the looks of those watching that simply having a plane come down perfectly on the deck without any concern for the length of the ship or its movement was amazing enough.

While still in the cockpit going over some things with Captain Ronalds, I heard a voice say, “Sir! Mr. Kert! I am Colonel Jorgenstein. I have all respect for Colonel Bennie, but your plane is now in my hands.”

I looked down to see a man very much in shape. Nothing about him said that he planned on retiring anytime soon. Colonel Bennie had actually been fun with his stories, but I looked down thinking this guy would only discuss business.

He had to wait for me to come down from my plane before I replied, “Colonel Bennie told me not to trust any of you until I had time to access your qualities for myself.”

The handshake was firm and quick. “Well, there are rules to working on a ship like this, so we are expecting you learn things as well.”

“Unlike you, I’m not an old dog.”

I had made the comment seeing if I could punch an easy button. The officer simply grunted, then turned to welcome Captain Ronalds. I thus assumed that Colonel Jorgenstein would be all business while on duty, so decided to save any wisecracks for other times.

As someone came up to show me to my quarters, the colonel asked me, “Mr. Kert, you wouldn’t happen to be familiar with the Ballet Slipper technology?”

“I worked with Professor Nathan to make her shoes, so I do know the technology. Never played with shoes of my own, however – if that is what you were asking.”

“Well, kind of, as we are thinking about incorporating it here. Tires are a major consumable, and we believe it would help reduce some storage and cost issues.”

Sherita had spoken to me about the proposed ideas of using her technology. We were friends, and I did have a very good understanding of what she had developed. Further, I bought a number of shares of her company, so I had a financial incentive to see her company prosper. I thus felt that I had enough knowledge of Sherita’s technology to make a comment.

“My goal is space, and I have thought about incorporating the technology in some of my designs. If you want someone to provide commentary, I can make myself available. I do consider Sherita a friend, so don’t mind speaking to her or about her.”

“That’s what I wanted to know. Take time to get yourself adjusted.”

As I moved off the flight deck, a female soldier came out stating that she would show me to my quarters. I already knew about the others, but she told me about their boat being about two hours away. Sherita came out on a company helicopter. I would have taken her with me, but I had the same problem she had in selling off rights to my own technology. I held rights to my space concepts, but even those had been licensed out to various groups who promised to make certain equipment. Captain Ronalds actually had more right to presently fly my plane than I did. I figured that I would follow the female soldier to my room, clean up, then go compare with Sherita our flights out to the carrier.

The one directing me was mentioning that my berth was just a few doors down when she fell against the wall at attention as a man in a business suit advanced upon me. “Mr. Kert, I was told that you are still the best man to wear the Minnow costume.”

I looked at him considering that I could take him. He was larger than me, and bulkier, but really did not appear in shape. By the time I would be feeling my blood flowing, I felt that he would be huffing for air. The way he set his lips gave me the impression that he regularly smoked a cigar. Looking at him, I did not like him.

“I cost twelve hundred an hour, rounding all fractions up, and the clock starts ticking when I decide that I need to start thinking about putting the costume on and lasts until I decide that I cannot justify running the clock any longer.”

“Money is not the object.”

“Tell me what company you work for, so I can make certain that I don’t have any of that stock.”

I knew that he was going to give me an order. Something in his eyes stated that he thought that he owned me. Not wanting to take things personal, I promised myself that I would talk to the company president before ordering a termination of our agreement.

“I need you in bay eight, pronto.”

“Get yourself a martini. I will be there, eventually.”

I guess the metal bulkhead the female soldier had her back against infused her with a spine, because she interjected, “Mr. Kert has not had a moment to freshen up since his arrival.”

To support those words, I added, “I am going to call my wife and let her know that I am all right. I am going to check on some things with my various business dealings. I might check the news. I will then wander through this vast ship seeing what there is to see OTHER than bay eight. Upon arriving at bay eight, I will then determine just how many martinis you have consumed and whether or not I might be able to catch up with you.”

He glared at me while saying, “I don’t drink.”

“My wife’s father owns a brewery. I thus am not feeling a connection between us.”

“Mr. Kert, there is a situation that requires your skills. Your country needs you.”

Not only was he not wearing a uniform, his hair was not regulation, and I saw an earring in an ear. “I am here on this vessel of my country not giving any of the good men and women serving my country any trouble.”

“I served my time. Eight years Army reserves.”

“Reserves?” I had to stop, as I had not even done that much. “Listen, I am here. Since I told you about my fee, and you agreed, I am not against doing a demonstration…”

“There is a need for you, as the Minnow.”

“I don’t know who you represent…”

“Cliff Mornings. Chaffron Developments. We make the ignition pads for military grade heavy armaments. They don’t go boom until our little devices go boom.” I guess he saw my face display my wonder at how what he said had anything to do with my activities as the Minnow. “I cannot tell you more, Mr. Kert, until you arrive in bay eight.”

“Then sip your water slowly, Mr. Mornings, as you wait for my arrival. Also, consider that your company will already be in debt to me by the time I arrive.”

As he rushed away, the female soldier softly said, “I had only heard about him, although it was not good.”

“Maybe those manners work in certain military situations, but there is nothing about me that is military. I support you that serve completely, but I am going to claim every freedom just because I want you men and women wearing the uniform to know what you are fighting for. That means Mr. Cliff Mornings is going to have to learn how to treat civilians.” I graciously bowed to the lady while saying, “Now, Corporal, if you don’t mind finishing what you started.”

Up to then the female soldier had mostly spoken an informational monologue about things pertaining to the carrier. She now smiled, and started asking about things about me. In return, I asked her things about herself. There was really nothing in common between us, except that we began to learn things about each other. When the female soldier left me in my quarters, I felt that our relationship had more of a future than whatever would occur between me and Mr. Mornings.

When I called Professor Nathan, he did not mention knowing anything about Chaffron Developments or any situation that might need my services. Cindy did not speak of knowing anything either, but that was just a momentary exchange in a rather long phone call. It was Mrs. Lorshein that spoke of a possible connection with Chaffron Developments.

“Weapons are basically universal, Larry. There are particulars to each nation, but the basic technology is not very different. Chaffron Developments has thus tried to sell their technology all over. I heard that they got into trouble, and it is causing some complications. Let me know what you find, Larry, as I have the connections to get you out of something you don’t want a part of.”

It was not much, but I did want her to know that I was grateful for the heads up. “I’ll keep that in mind, Mrs. Lorshein. I however know that they have Boom and Ages coming, so suspected something like this. I will keep you informed. All my NDAs cite you as a recognized confidant, even those restricting conversations with Professor Nathan or Cindy.”

“I have never abused the trust between us, Larry. But, yes, you need an outlet, and I promised my husband that I would support you. Let me know what you need, Larry.”

“I will, Mrs. Lorshein. I however hope it is only a good story.”

Fantasy puts more requirements on the writer than any other fiction, because the world must be made as real before anything else can be real.
Adult Christian fiction quite different than all the usual lame stuff in that market.  "Dilemma of Dreams" now in hard back.
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Number of posts : 1324
Age : 59
Location : Ringgold, Louisiana
Current Mood :
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Part Two   January 23rd 2013, 3:36 pm

A Fight for Recognition
Story Twenty-Seven: Part Two
Surrounded by Water

I did not take any grand tour of the ship before arriving at bay eight. Honestly, I doubt that I took an hour, although I started the timer on the second hour as soon as I walked through the portal. What I saw were the others standing around and speaking with each other. Coming up to Sherita, I let her know that I was only being an asshole to Mr. Mornings.

“You could have called.”

“I only got here myself, Larry. I would have called, as I don’t get paid unless I am in uniform and being presented as Ballet Slipper. In other words, I’m not being paid.”

“Yes, but you get twenty grand when you do. I am at twelve hundred an hour.”

As she whistled, Ages stepped up to us to say, “Trouble is coming. Can either of you speak for those who are using your technology?”

We both spoke a negative. He acted as he wanted to speak, but was interrupted by Mr. Mornings starting to welcome us. I spoke over him to someone I felt could help us make the meeting productive.

“Sir Soldier! Who is paying that guy? He’s not military.”

“No, but with civilians we need a civilian liaison.”

“Well, we got trouble, so send him someplace safe.”

As he stammered, “Uh, what?” I pointed to Mr. Mornings.

MPs came in and escorted Mr. Mornings out of the bay, then I called over someone. “Boom! Come here!”

He had been helping himself to the refreshments, so came with hands loaded. “What you need?”

“Ages says something is coming, which means that something is already on its way. You and I are the only ones that can work over water, and my technology is presently in the hands of others. That puts you on the spot, although I will be working to provide you with support.”

“I’m not in uniform.”

“If you need to be in uniform, go get in uniform.”

“Well, my mask protects my face and provides goggles for my eyes.”

“I said to go get in uniform.”

I turned to Ages to ask, “Can you give us an approximate time?”

Just then sirens blared. Ages and I locked our gazes on each other. I believe that he knew what I wanted to say, and I felt that I could guess his response. I thus turned to another while speaking over the sirens.

“Sir Soldier, I guess we are going to learn if we need a liaison, but I would say that it needs to be military and not civilian.”

“That is my position, Larry.”

“Then let’s see how much difficulty you have, as I am going topside.”

Luckily, our little meeting had not been done anywhere deep in the bowels of the ship. We thus gained the flight deck rather quickly. I was impressed that none of the soldiers made an action to stop us. Our hurried pace had them step aside with their backs to the wall, as if our frantic movements gave us priority in spite of not having a superior rank.

It was not the spray of humid ocean air, but a warm blast of salty mist that assailed us when we tried to see the reason for the sirens. I turned to see an elevator bringing up my plane. Looking up, I saw someone in my uniform discussing things with an officer. I told Sherita to wait for Boom while I moved to yell up to the one possessing my technology.

“Hey, throw me my headset!”

The officer looked down at me to say, “You’re crazy! You cannot go up against that thing alone!”

“I believe your first statement negates the second! Throw me my gloves as well!”

The one with my equipment tossed the items down. The wind did blow them a little, but I found Sir Soldier present to help me catch them. As he handed my gloves to me, he asked a necessary question.

“Do you know what you are doing?”

“Reconnaissance. Boom has the offensive capabilities. I assume the headset in this is active, but I don’t think Boom has a headset in his mask.”

“I’ll get to work on that. Good luck.”

I would have preferred my full uniform, but I knew how long it took to put the thing on. While I wanted the gloves for their hooks to hold onto the bars beneath my wings, I really could not trust them without the rest of the uniform to disperse my weight. I however knew that once I had height that I could ride my wings safely. I thus took no time to put on my gloves and cowl.

While I felt speed was one detriment to my technology, it had proven itself fast enough for most local situations. In almost no time I had gained enough height to see over the mist. While I wanted to see the cause of the situation, I feared being seen in return. I thus performed some quick maneuvers getting back into the feel of being in action while surveying my surroundings.

“Mr. Kert, this is Corporal Thompson. We believe that we have the antagonist to the north – northwest.”

I had no idea about directions with only water around me. I just called over my large wing, and found myself glad to see that it was Bumble. Jumping on it, I knelt down to activate a camera.

“Very good, Mr. Kert. We have picked up your video signal.”

I felt the attack about the time that I saw the baby-blue drone. It was actually rather large for an unmanned vehicle. I set myself to hold onto grips set in the sides of Bumble as I directed it to perform some rolls. Whatever mount was directing the laser did not follow me that well, which gave me time to direct my lady, Barracuda, at the drone’s tail.

During the move, I felt the burn of the laser upon my body. That simply told me that I was in danger, so my evasive actions were necessary. It however also told me that we needed to take the drone out of action. I thus did not worry about my own pain, but hoped for Boom to hurry up and appear as I continued to move to keep the laser from targeting me.

I got burned as I move close enough to get a good look at the drone. It had a strong laser mount on the bottom, but another on top. That prevented me from landing on the device. I however still knew some things about aircraft. I thus opened the compartment on Bumble to get the grapnel as I looked at the drone to plan my attack.

There were probably a number of factors that came into play that caused the drone to explode. The one attempting to target me probably saw my actions to prepare the grapnel. The arrival of Boom also surely had the ones that sent the drone worry about attacks. Barracuda bumping the upper turret also probably disturbed those directing the craft. As I was glad to have Boom nearby, as his powers kept me from feeling the full concussion of the drone exploding.

We came down to the fight deck with some soldiers cheering while others came to check on us. I had a serious burn, so was directed to some medics. As I went along the way, Sir Soldier and the officer I had spoken with earlier came with me. I however did pause to shake hands with those soldiers I passed.

The officer however said, “You took quite a risk, Mr. Kert.”

“It’s called life. Our side suffered a burn while their side lost an expensive piece of equipment. I would say that we won.”

“Personnel is more important than equipment.”

“Thanks for the concern, but we learned quite a bit about the determination and technology of our opponents. I still say that we won.”

I heard the voice of Boom coming up behind me asking, “Larry! Larry! Are you okay?”

The officer grimaced as I had him and the others escorting me wait for Boom’s arrival. “A burn, but other than that all is well.” I shook the man’s hand, then said, “Listen, you only wear a cowboy outfit. All you really need is that mask, right?”

“Yeah. I’ll carry it with me. Abe will want to make a report.”

“Then come on. We can work it out as I get treated.”

Sherita came up to ask, “Hey, you get a bonus for combat situations?”

She wanted to hug me, but did not want to touch my burn. We thus simply traded a simple kiss. I then answered her question.

“No, but they are responsible for any medical bills. I thus need to let them treat me.”

“Okay. Speak with you later.”

Boom also said that he would speak to me later. I told him to go speak to Ages and find out what more he could tell us about those that launched the attack. He assured me that he would, then said that he was glad to be part of the superhero group. We spoke about later coming up for a name for our team.

Reaching the infirmary, Sir Soldier finally spoke. “You seem to be our leader.”

“I would hope that it is because I am willing to take the risks, and what I tell the rest of you to do makes sense.”

“You also have the greatest time of service.”

“So, does that change anything?”

“Yes, as it means that you can fire Mr. Mornings.”

Honestly, I had to admit that I did not know anything about Mr. Mornings. Not wanting to speak against someone that might have had good credentials, but only made a bad first impression, I spoke suggesting an evaluation of the man. Sir Soldier listed that as a necessary detail, then spoke of some more. The officer in charge of the use of my Minnow equipment had his own concerns. By the time the medical officers said that I could go, Mr. Mornings was actually not the most pressing detail on my agenda.

Fantasy puts more requirements on the writer than any other fiction, because the world must be made as real before anything else can be real.
Adult Christian fiction quite different than all the usual lame stuff in that market.  "Dilemma of Dreams" now in hard back.
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Surrounded by Water (Both Parts of Two)
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