Hot Quafe, Cold Hearted


System sat reclined in the J-cluo chair in the East Lounge. She was looking out over the ocean contemplating it’s depths, and it’s ability to keep a balance, trying not to let her imagination engage in what was to come.

Mr.Pinn strode into the room carrying a tray in his left hand and clutching a satchel in his right it’s strap over his shoulder, the House Baud emblem stitched across the satchel.

The tray had a large silver frosted bottle, an empty glass tumbler, and two pipping hot cups of Quafe.

He set the tray down on the table beside System and pulled a large leather chair up to it.

He then sat down and placed one of the hot cups of Quafe next to System’s arm, “I do not know how you can drink that stuff hot, Little Miss.”  The term of fondness warmed her heart, recalling memories to her childhood momentarily.

System grabbed the bottle by the neck, twisted off the cork, and poured a short shot into the cup of Quafe. She set the bottle down and then picked up the cup and carefully blew across it’s surface.

“It takes some getting used to Mr. Pinn, but 125 year old Donny, sure does take the edge off the Quafe.”

He grinned a bit, there it was, the old Mr. Pinn she remembered was still in there.

“Dear old Mr. Pinn, Please tell me now what happened to mum and da,” her voice faltered and cracked on that last word.

“I am unsure how to say this wisely, so I beg your forgiveness.  Let me just tell you the circumstances blatantly.” he said while picking up the empty glass tumbler and pouring himself a generous pull of Donny straight.

He tipped the glass tumbler back, the cool intoxicating beverage tantalizing his tongue, and slipping down his throat.

“It was the Minmatar.” he said, an edge in the tenor of his voice.  “Two Thukker assassins and a Krusual bitch.” he spat the last word out revealing the deep hatred he held in check.

Anger welled up inside her chest, her stomach tightened and she felt herself beginning to bare her teeth.  A flush of blood and adrenaline surged across her face.

Thukker?” System queried, the word had mixed emotions wrought from the roof of her mouth. “They are a bit far from the Great Wildlands aren’t they? Why did they do this? Why…” her voice trailed off.

“That’s not all dear princess, the Krusual bitch was a capsuleer.” and again the disdain could be felt when he uttered that word, bitch.  System winced when he said it, but hoped he didn’t notice. She could not remember a time of ever hearing Mr. Pinn using impolite language.

“The house authorities think they know what happened. I’ll leave the details of their attack to you to read as I cannot bring myself to put them to voice. The why is what we should discuss dear one.”

He continued, “the Thukker’s had scrawled in Helio nano paint across the walls of your parents chamber five words, ‘Slaver Pish. Blood Vi Cunt’.”

System’s heart sank, she knew exactly what it meant.

They were Retributionist.

A growing problem on Oris in the last decade was the number of politically motivated terrorist ‘revenge’ killings for Amarrian slave owners, at the hand of alien Minmatar assassins.

As it is with many activist and terrorists, misinformation, and the gullibility to believe without verifying, these three must not have known, nor took the time to find out about the Baud family history.

The House Baud had done away with the practice of slave ownership nearly five generations ago. Forsaking passages from the Book of Reclaiming, and the prophecies of Gheinok the First they suffered politically and socially. After several generations they had found a peace with it managing to abstain from the practice completely without drawing to much attention.

Later, System’s great grandfather started an abolitionist movement, underground at first, but by the time her grandfather and father had come to power they had moved the abolitionists movement, though in minority, into the modern Amarrian civilization’s collective consciousness.

Then her father’s life’s work was honored and recognized when Empress Jamyl I proclaimed her Emancipation Decree in YC111.  Hundreds of millions of slaves were freed, although a large number of slaves, Minmatar and otherwise, remain enslaved with in the Empire, even here on Oris to this day.

System had grown up in a house where slavery was not taught as a right, and that the freedom of all sentient beings was the highest enlightenment to attain to.

Proving being first was not always being correct the Baud House was considered by many, even to this day, as heretical to traditional Amarrian religions beliefs.

Her father had worn this general Amarrian disdain toward himself and his House as a badge of honor.

Every Minmatar that had worked for the Baud’s over the last 135 years, had been free to leave if they wanted.  They were treated fairly and paid well.  Even if they left, they had the protection of the House Baud, which came merely by having been in their employ.

The Bauds had many enemies in Amarrian society, but none were physically dangerous.

Their enemies had always resolved themselves to wield their enmity toward House Baud with political power and with the manipulation of social medias against them.  This was not that kind of enmity.

This attack was guttural and intimate.

She spoke with Mr. Pinn for the next few hours asking him many questions, many of which he was able to answer. They both cried, and at one point they just sat quietly enjoying each others company in silence commiseration.

Then Mr. Pinn had pulled out of the satchel several data links and some official linen paper documents for System to sign and blood stamp.

The beginning of the legal transfer started, Mr. Pinn excused himself to freshen up a new brew of Quafe and grab a couple more bottles of Donny.  Dusk was beginning to fall, as the evening sun light began to ebb.  They would be up late into the evening sorting things out.

While he was away System sat quietly thinking.

She had set in her mind firmly that she would have to hunt down these two Thukker mortals and their Krusual capsuleer and bring the holy justified might of Amarrian punishment to them.

They would die by her hands, slowly, and painfully she hoped.  She knew it would not bring relief to her or her House’s grief, but it had to be done to send a message to other Retributionists, and to sate her anger and rage.  Until this was accomplished she would not find balance in her immortal life – she could not fully begin this new chapter in her life, until…

Mr. Pinn entered the room with fresh provisions and sat quietly not speaking.

After a few minutes, System spoke, “Let us attend to the final official legalities and ceremony of my Heirship and the power transition as the Heir of the House. I want to get the House in order so I can leave as soon as possible.  We must also plan and attend the burial rites in 3 day, after which I plan to leave Oris.”

She realized she was going to have to leave the Pacifier behind, in more ways than one. She would leave it docked at the station orbiting Oris and acquire a more suitable ship for the task at hand.

System would also have to keep her plans quiet.  Any word reaching the Enclave’s ears might raise too many ‘Creedo’ compliance questions, and at this time she could not afford to have anything hindering her.

She would deal with Mynxee and Splunk later if she had to… for now she was going to become invisible and stalk her targets, learn their ways, and bring to them a slow raging death.

This phoenix had teeth, and would bring fire and anguish.

She felt the power of her ancestry pulsing through her veins, and desperately tried to keep it in check and balanced.