A new twisted tale that I have been mulling around for a while. Just something to pass the time while I work on the third chapter of “Lessons” as well as a story that I am going to be writing. I really would appreciate some feedback on this story to see if you all like it and if I should continue with it, as well as more suggestions for the third chapter in “Lessons” because I am stalled at what I should do with it.
Since I was sold I was under the knife, not even a year old they started the operations getting the cerebral augmenting spinal column in me early. Basically they took out my entire spine, starting from the tip of the tail bone and put it directly into my skull like a real spinal column. This made me stronger, react to things faster, more receptive to learning, not to mention they could do just about anything with me and know exactly when to stop right before my breaking point. The directive of this experiment they were doing was to create not just the perfect soldier but a perfect pilot. Now not a pilot in the essence of aircraft or such, I could fly anything from the little remote control helicopter to a type 7 juggernaut space cruiser. What they needed was a pilot for the hardest thing of them all, a Valkyrie. The Valkyrie is a mechanized fighting machine. Standing at about 12 meters tall, they were simple enough for anyone to get into one and move around in it, but for one to actually do a real ballet of death you needed to be skilled. A normal civilian with no training could get it to move in jerky, stiff jointed robotic motions. In the hands of a skilled operator though we could make them do a recreation of swan lake with just as much flow and fluid movement as an actual dancer.
So jump ahead from my childhood of endless classrooms, strict training regimes and whatnot and into the present. So let’s start at the beginning of my shift. When I space travel my body works on a completely different clock than when I am on a planet. On a planet I go by that planets day cycle, when I’m in space I go off the standard 36hour day. I heard my alarm go off and I was already rolling out of the small cot I was on. The alarm that sounds for me to wake up was a “WEIIIIIII WEIIIIII” sound, the alarm sounding at the moment however was going more of a “BREAAAAAA BREAAAAA” meaning “ALL HANDS TO DECK!”
I ran out of the barracks and bolted down the halls of the Royal Class Cruiser. I rounded only a couple of corners before I got to the hanger, I went into a sprint across the hanger and jumped into the Valkyrie battle system. I wasn’t wearing a link suit or anything so I wouldn’t be running at full sync but for what it was I didn’t think I needed to be at full sync. This part of space is usually just filled with rogue pirates looking to make a quick buck, they would know it wasn’t their day when they realized they had stumbled upon a royal cruiser.
I booted up the systems in the Valkyrie and was out in space in 4 minutes. I was doing an overall patrol of the area of the ship, there was already they royal guard out doing their thing and this gave us a force of about 40 machines not to mention the defense turrets on the ship itself. A couple hundred 8mm high impulse lasers to deal with any missiles or ships that foolishly got too close along with the quad 14meter ion cannons that could rip through the shields on a juggernaut class in just a couple of volleys.
Everything was quiet, it was space though so it wasn’t that uncommon for things to be quiet. No one was talking over the communication lines, we all knew what we had to do. And then hell broke loose. They had jumped directly into our grid and we were more than surprised to see other royal knights charging at us. It was a mutiny, and it was all led by another Lord Knight, his name being Vincent Heart. Every Lord Knight knew that he was pining for the throne, he was already courting the Kings eldest daughter but the King still had an elder son to take the throne should he die. But it all clicked when I saw Heart’s Valkyrie, the Kings son was on this cruiser with the King himself as he was failing in health.
The battle was fearsome, because the knights we were fighting against had the same ID as the rest of us the ship couldn’t help as it was still considering the traitors as allies. In the end we failed, Heart had some with a force a hundred strong along with his own private subordinates. These were the elites of the guard that served only one Lord Knight never anymore. Mine were on vacation and I knew I would never see them again as I floated off into space in the dead body of my Valkyrie. Heart had made sure to kill me first and send my floating, dead corpse of a machine into space slow enough that I could watch as he tore through the Kings cruiser killing him. And now he was King, Vincent Heart would be the next King.
All of this played back in my head as I stared out into the deep black void of space. The whole thing about the nanite reserve in my artificial spine was sort of a failsafe for this exact predicament. Not the whole mutiny, but being trapped inside of a shuttle while in space. Only thing there was usually a distress beacon that went out for a rescue, I knew right now that there was nothing going out to rescue me. The nanites would slowly lull me to sleep and then start the preservation process, after the cockpit of my Valkyrie senses that I enter the third or fourth stage of sleep, deep sleep, it starts to lower the temperature for cryo freezing. Because of the nanites I would not dream, when I fall asleep I would be asleep until either my Valkyrie system is reactivated, at which case it safely brings me up from temperatures from around 77-74 Kelvin to more normal ones fit for living.
For a normal person inside of a normal escape pod they can last around 6 years, for a pilot inside of a Valkyrie they can last anywhere from 10 to 16 years depending on the damage of the Valkyrie. But because of my artificial spine with the nanites and my special Valkyrie unit the scientists projected someone like me to survive anywhere from a century to a millennium in space. And yet for some reason, none of this reassured me as I watched the glowing wreckage of the Royal Cruiser I had been tasked to protect be surrounded by explosions and more fighting. I knew a lot of things could happen, I could get picked up by pirates who would see the royal insignia on the Valkyrie and use it as target practise. The prick of a Lord Knight Heart could kill me simply by slicing through to the cockpit exposing me to the empty void of space in which I might last a whole 2 minutes sins I wasn’t in a sync suit or an environment suit. And the thought of staying alive as a lifeless corpse in a lifeless war machine for decades upon decades, maybe even centuries upon centuries, none of it comforted me.
But there was nothing I could do as I felt the nanites perform as tasked, it felt like my limbs had fallen asleep with the pins and needles feeling running all over them, I knew that this was just my nervous system hitting the nanites and trying to sort out what it was feeling. Next came the drowsiness and then I was out.
And then I woke up.