(IC) Last Son of Prano: Chapter 4

<Chapter 1 can be found HERE>

<Chapter 2 can be found HERE>

<Chapter 3 can be found HERE>

1 year ago.

Gigaer exited the docking area and stepped onto the expansive promenade of Hakeri VII station. All around him were small shops where peddlers bought and sold goods and services in a desperate effort to eek out a living. Shopkeeps yelled at passer’s by, announcing that within their modest establishments were the best products at the best price. Food, clothing, baubles and services of every kind lined the expansive maze. Gigaer frequented this place. Watching people live and laugh and swoon were one his simple pleasures. To him it kept him connected. It was far too easy for a capsuleer to detach from the realities beyond money and combat.

Past the more active paths was a simple pub he chose to frequent whenever in the region. The Serpent’s Lounge. There was often one on any stations that sported large Minmatar populaces. It wasen’t exclusive, but if you weren’t Matari you probably avoided it. Rumor had it that many who chose to live on the darker sides on the law frequented these establishments, which made for a solid clientbase and a foreboding reputation. Gigaer entered and reverse-nodded the bouncer. Gigaer had been doing business with a local tribal agent for a few months now and the staff had come to recognize him. Sitting at the bar, Gigaer saw that the barkeep was already preparing his usual lunch order, so he took out his datapad and accessed information on the status of his Rupture (which was relatively new but took a few hits in a small scrap with a pirate convoy this morning), latest news from across the galaxy, his financials, messages and possible jobs he could take next.

His burger and quafe arrived after a few minutes. Gigaer placed the pad beside his plate and took a swig of his drink while still looking at his balances, trying to decide if it was a good idea to upgrade a few tertiery systems, when the pad prompted him to view a new “URGENT” message that had just come in. Opening his inbox, Gigaer noticed the sender’s name was restricted and the subject was “From a friend…”. He wondered if it was just another piece of spam that got through his filter until he opened it up.

To whoever you think you are,

I know who you are, who you REALLY are. I’ve been watching you for some time and I’ve realized you need what I have. Meet me in the back alley after you have finished your meal.

Regards,

Ambiguous.

Gigaer turned quickly towards the door, and swore he saw someone leave and turn towards the alley. Normally he would have ran after the stranger, but the message suggested he eat first, and the prices in these places were a little high to just walk away from. It was also rare for someone to be poisoned in the Lounge (it being the social equivalent to sacred ground), so he ate and returned to his other reading, confident the stranger would wait.

An hour later (It was a big burger and Gigaer hated eating fast) Gigaer stood at the entrance to the dead-end alley behind the lounge. Gigaer wore a black leather trench coat that covered most of his body, black cargo pants with a gear-laden belt and black combat boots. The coat covered most of his torso, but split open at the collarbone and belt. He also had a few accessories, including a Gallente handgun and his kandjal. The stranger stood at the end on the alley, wearing non-descript clothes and reading the listed contents of an energybar he was already eating, looking none-too-please with what he had just ingested. He was Matari, but Gigaer couldn’t really spot anything of interest about his face or appearance. Noticing Gigaer walking towards him, he threw the bar over his shoulder and tried to wipe the caramel-like substance on his shirt. They stood a few feet away from each other, sizing each other up for a few seconds before the stranger smiled and reached into his back pocket. Gigaer assumed he was reaching for a weapon and whipped out his kandjal. Quickly extending it, the bladed tip came to within millimetres of the stranger’s throat.

“Name, or your head. I’ll have one or the other right now. Your choice which one.” Gigaer said directly. The stranger held his smile but retracted his hand from whatever he was about to grab.

“If you’re going to kill me, you should at least tell me your name.” said the stranger wryly.

Gigaer hesitated for a half-second. Everything up to this point hinted to this man knowing about Gigaer’s true bloodline. Perhaps this man was too dangerous to leave alive, but Gigaer’s quest was at a standstill because of a complete lack of information. The contents of the old Amarr datacore were mostly musings on his lineage and destiny, but few specifics were to be found. A test was in order. Best to let the stranger show his hand first before Gigaer comitted to anything. “Gigaer, of the house Kaliso.”

The stranger began to laugh a little. “Amusing. We both surround ourselves with illusions to protect ourselves. The difference is I know who you really are, while you don’t have a clue.” The words struck Gigaer slightly harder then he thought they would have. The kandjal retracted and he placed it slowly back in its sheath. The stranger’s hand went again to his back pocket. He slowly retrieved a Minmatar datacore. “I’m known as Eyes. I deal mostly in information. I see everything there is to see. I see you. I’ve watched you putter around, doing jobs for various organizations, not really having any real direction or cause. Sure, you’ll hunt down pirates and slavers and think you’re saving lives. You post on chatrooms anonymously and think you’re saving souls. You know you’re really doing neither but you don’t know what else to do. I was hired to track you down, and if it looked like you were directionless, give you this.”

Gigaer cautiously took the datacore and took stock of it. “And what exactly is this?”

Eyes took stock of Gigaer. “Direction.” Gigaer shot him an angry glance, as he was in no mood to be toyed with. Eyes shot his hands up in resignation. “Hey, that’s all I was told when I asked. Rare that I ask such things but… you intrigue me. Your instructions are simple. Fly deep into the Great Wildlands and interface the datacore with your comms system. It’s programmed to send an automated and heavily encrypted message on a very specific bandwidth.”

Gigaer humphed, “Sounds like suicide to me.”

Eyes nodded, “Agreed, but I was payed ludicrously well to give this to you, and before you even ask, no, I can’t tell you who I’m working for. If you want my advice, and this is just personal opinion, you’d be wise to do what these people want you to. They know things about you that you won’t be able to learn anywhere else.”

Gigaer looked into Eyes’ eyes. Gigaer thought of himself as a good judge of character and has been able to sniff out deception in the past. As best he could figure, Eyes was telling the truth, and there was really nothing left Eyes could tell him. Gigaer nodded and walked with datacore in hand towards to docks.

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~ by psychediver on 11/30/2010.

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