Chapter 26 of Death and Coping


Sorry about the wait, my server wasn't working and I couldn't get email or post to my website. I am also looking for serious comments on another story I am writing. If you enjoy this, then check out . Im looking for any feedback on it that I can get. Any feedback on Death and Coping would also be appreciated. Thanks and enjoy the story.

Chapter 26
Aaron Williams walked down the corridors of the Eclipse. His mind was racing against time. The ship had been in chaos ever since Captain Donaldson had executed the XO and his mutineers. With them had died the only hope the Kilrathi had unless he could somehow stop them. But he was just one man among hundreds and he didn't know if there were any potential allies. As he reached the observation deck, he found one of the marines staring at the strange black and white space out before him. He walked up next to him and peered out, thinking to himself. If only things were as cut and dried as they had been during the war, then it would have been much simpler. Now it seemed as if he lived in a universe of shaded grays. Things that were once clear cut had become muddy. He sighed and looked at the marine.
"Beautiful sight, isn't it?"
"If you say so," the marine grumbled. "Seems to have lost some of its shine for me."
Aaron nodded his head. "I understand. I've always dreamt of fighting the Kilrathi, of saving humanity. It never felt like this in my dreams. I dreamt of vanquishing the Kilrathi, not slaughtering them."
The marine turned and faced Aaron. His skin was a dark red, his features sharp. "There is no honor in this. My ancestors were the Apache. They were fierce warriors feared by all that stood in their way. Much like the cats, I suppose. But then our lands were invaded and our enemies did not fight with honor. They took what was ours yet we fought them and refused to give up our land."
"What happened?"
"My people died. They slaughtered almost all of them. My grandfather used to tell me horror stories of what our people went through and the sacrifices that they had made. And now, here I am, no better than they. My ancestors would be shamed by the things that I have done here."
"Perhaps there is still hope," Williams said.
"How so?"
Aaron mused on his situation. He wondered how much he should risk. He knew that this could be it for him. "We could act. Save the Kilrathi."
"No! I couldn't kill anyone one here. What you ask is impossible!" he said, turning from Aaron.
"No, no one has to be hurt. All we would have to do is disable the cloaking device and we would have to turn back. Maybe send out a signal just to be safe. That way Kilrathi would know where we are and we would be forced to turn back. No more people have to die. And our XO's sacrifice would not have been for nothing." Aaron waited what felt like an eternity before the marine responded.
"My ancestors would be proud of that perhaps," he said smiling. He offered Aaron his hand. "My name is John Deercreek."
"Aaron Williams," he said, taking the marines hand. "Welcome to the conspiracy."

"That was an incredibly foolish thing you did, Captain," Admiral McDavis said. His voice was utterly calm, devoid of any passion. "What we are doing is difficult enough without you slaughtering your own crew."
"They were planning a mutiny, Sir! Should I have just stood by and let that happen?" Donaldson said back. He stood up, visibly angry.
"Of course not, but they should have been thrown in the brig. Morale is devastated. News of that little speech your XO gave is all over this ship. If we don't make it to T'lan Meth then everything we have worked for was for nothing. The Kilrathi already know something is up, but they still don't know exactly what. If we act fast enough, they won't have a chance. We drop the virus and watch them die."
"Yes Admiral, you are, of course, correct. It's just... I can't believe that they would actually sympathize with those beasts. They're worse than the Mandarins. Didn't they know the price we paid in this war? We mustn't risk another one against those monsters. It must end here and now."
"I agree Captain, I agree. Now we must..." McDavis began to say when an explosion rang throughout the ship. Admiral McDavis looked and saw the space outside flickering as the ships decloaked. "What the hell is going on?"
"I don't know!" Donaldson yelled as he opened the comm channel to security. "Sattler! What the hell is going on? Are we under attack?"
"No Sir," Security Chief Sattler responded over the comm "The explosion was internal and took out one of the cloaking devices. Without it, we cannot maintain the cloak. We're completely visible. We'll show up on a system scan, though our shadow is still reduced. It's putting a heavy strain on our system running with only two cloak generators. If we keep them up, we risk burning out the other two. What do you want us to do?"
"Keep the field up at all costs. Is there any way to repair the damage?"
"No Sir, it's a total loss. Someone blew the hell out of the thing. We reviewing the security logs right now, Sir. We'll find out who did this."
"Make sure you do or I'll have your hide, dammit!" He clicked off the comm and howled. "God damn it."
"It appears you didn't get every last mutineer after all. Get up to the bridge and make sure they get those responsible, Donaldson."
"Yes Sir."
McDavis watched as Donaldson left, cursing. They had made it too far for it to fall apart now. They must succeed no matter the cost. If he had to sacrifice every person on the ship, he would. The Kilrathi must die.

Aaron ran down the hall, heading for the backup communication room. It was the only place that wouldn't be too heavily guarded. They had separated since they had a greater chance of succeeding on their own. At least one of them would hopefully make it and it appeared one had. Deercreek had managed to steal a grenade and had apparently managed to use it on one of the cloaking devices. Now he had to take care of his side of things. He knew time was running short though. Security would be tightening very fast. His hands sweated against the cold wrench he had picked up on his way down here. It wasn't the deadliest of weapons but most people wouldn't think much of him running around with it either. A gun would have drawn immediate attention even if he could have gotten one. He bolted into the comm room and smiled at the officer.
"May I help you?" the man asked.
Aaron walked up to him, still smiling as he swung the wrench he had held behind him. He winced at the sickening thud it made when it hit. The man dropped like a rock. Aaron went to the comm controls, hit the override switch, and started speaking.
"To all ships in the area, this is the TCS Eclipse. We are on an unauthorized mission and are planning to spread a deadly virus. I repeat, we are spreading a deadly virus at T'lan Meth. This ship must be stopped. I repeat..."
"Put that mike down, Aaron," Chief Sattler said. His gun was raised towards the 2nd Lieutenant.
Aaron sat the mike down slowly. He eyed the security chief. Sattler was a big man and was nearly ten feet away. They had done all that they could at least. Everything from this point on was in the Kilrathi's hands. Though if he were going to die, it would be on his terms. He nodded at Sattler and sprinted at him. One shot rang out and then another. Silence fell in the Comm room as the TCS Eclipse headed onward towards T'lan Meth.

There is no God but myself. No destiny but what I deem for me. I walk my path and no others, for I am free.

[This message has been edited by Vondoom (edited August 20, 2000).]
As you requested specific details during a previous conversation, I give you these after a brief look...

<LI>There are a number of run-on sentances.
<LI>The segment between the Aaron and the indian is incredibly cliche'd and awkward -- not to mention improbable. I mean, come on, "the white man"? Sheesh. I wish everything could be black and white? Eck!
<LI>You don't capitalize "sir".
<LI>The name of the system is T'lan Meth, not T'Lan Meth.
<LI>The period after 'comm' is wrong... it makes it look like the sentance has ended.
<LI>Stop using the word 'screamed', it makes you sound like Ziggy.

[This message has been edited by Bandit LOAF (edited August 20, 2000).]
Actually Bandit LOAF, here's what I think of your suggestions. Thanks
The only way for me to hone my writing ability is feedback as long as it isn't bashing, I love it. As for your responses.

1) There were a few I had missed. These should be fixed now. (I'm horrible with them above all things)
2) This was a problem and re-wrote it to fix it. It still is not perfect and I fully admit this. I'll rewrite things after I am fully done and will add him earlier, and deepen him somewhat. I just needed two people to make it likely and cheated which I shouldn't have done. I've made it less clinched but there are still problems with it probably.
3) Damn Word doesn't pick that one up on spell check. Fixed.
4) My error, also fixed.
5) I wasn't sure on that one, Word insisted that it was how it was supposed to be. Also taken care of.
6) I agree that I can use the same word occasionlly too often. Fixed that. But I would have to be plastered to write like Ziggy

Thanks again, I really do appreciate feedback and welcome anyone's. Even from people who don't like me

There is no God but myself. No destiny but what I deem for me. I walk my path and no others, for I am free.
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Y'know, I went over Ziggy's stories because everyone keeps mentioning them, and then I went over some others I found...

Though Ziggy lacks the writing ability, he ranks right up there with everyone else for creativity and accuracy. I think everyone picks on him too much since, to me, there's a striking resemblance between Ziggy's stories and everyone else's.

Hats off to the new-age hairstyle made of bones,
Hats off to the use of hats as megaphones...

Yeah, Trelene is surely the greatest one of all.

There is no God but myself. No destiny but what I deem for me. I walk my path and no others, for I am free.
It's not the same without Matrix doing a truckload of nitpicks.

Is the guy still alive?

The WC Source Code Release Project needs you!
"This matter winds itself ever in new riddles.", Faramir - The Lord of The Rings
"Yesterday we obeyed kings and bent our neck before emperors. But today we kneel only to truth..." - Kahlil Gibran

Member of the LMG(Centaurian)
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well i'm not going into the ziggy vs. anyother writer right now.
but let's get serius...

Vondoom's one hell of a writer, so are most guys here, sure there are some stories that don't make it past one chapter (like mine)

I really like Quarto's stuff
I really like Crickets stuff
I really like Matrix's stuff
I REALLY love Vondoom's DaC
and if you look at this whit and open mind; just because the "book" has no cover to judge it bye, doesn't mean it's bad

When I'm in the air...
I'm indestructible.
No one can stop me...
But they try.
Real WC fans support the WCESCRP
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Finally someone's saying some positive stuff around here.

If I'm locked on, there's no such thing as evasive action!
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That would be strange, since it would mean that you read my stuff twice
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