[3/31/2013 10:11:02 PM] Josie: Right!

[3/31/2013 10:11:24 PM] Josie: Here we go.

[3/31/2013 10:14:30 PM] Josie: In an effort to overcome his shady past as an assassin, Coil retired from the business, purchased a used ship, a 3100 Skybuster-class ship known for its maneuverability. Though it's also fairly fast and is quite capable of in-atmosphere landings, the ship's native weapon systems aren't much to speak of, and it would be fairly unlikely to prevail in a firefight without consideration of tactics.

[3/31/2013 10:16:23 PM] Josie: The ship does require two people to run it, but, being as how Coil's jobs often require more people, up until recently he'd had a crew of three. Two of them, however-- a nice, competent married couple--have just retired, and so Coil has been left with just one crew member--his engineer.

[3/31/2013 10:17:56 PM] Josie: Coil has been working with said engineer for at least a year or two. His name is Vir, and he's a genetically-augmented human. Hundreds of years ago, his planet was colonized by people who had  augmented themselves for that purpose, and because the planet was entirely composed of oceans, they augmented themselves to live in those conditions.

[3/31/2013 10:18:59 PM] Josie: Vir is an exceptional engineer, and has helped keep your ship running with very little in the way of equipment, though he does have a bad habit of using whatever's available to fix what needs fixing--no pots and pans or metal objects are really safe from the welding torch.

[3/31/2013 10:20:54 PM] Josie: He is, however, not really a man of action. Though Coil has never seen them, Vir's medical records are clear--he has webbed feet that aren't suitable for much walking, much less running, and he also breathes through gills rather than lungs. To enable him to breathe standard environmental air, he wears a heavy, ornate torc around his neck, and if it ever came off he would drown in the air.

[3/31/2013 10:21:00 PM] Josie: ((Ah, the Screaming Family again.))

[3/31/2013 10:21:37 PM] Coil: ((joy!))

[3/31/2013 10:22:00 PM] Josie: Vir doesn't even carry a gun, usually, and he's a terrible shot. He does carry a weapon traditional among his people--a curved knife--but you've never seen him actually use it.

[3/31/2013 10:23:17 PM] Josie: He doesn't talk about his past, or his people, and he certainly never speaks about his physical condition. However, given that he seems to premeditate on every single movement, Coil probably suspects that it's painful for him to even walk at all. For the first few months he took no pay in order to be allowed a tank of water in his quarters; Coil has never seen him using it.

[3/31/2013 10:24:10 PM] Coil: ((How is Vir pronounced?  Ver or Veer?))

[3/31/2013 10:24:19 PM] Josie: ((The latter.))

[3/31/2013 10:25:10 PM] Josie: Coil's ship, the Argent, isn't especially passenger-friendly, but there are rooms for 8 people on board, assuming no one wants to share rooms, and there's also enough space for small cargo. You're never going to fit a herd of cattle in there, but by stacking and securing things properly, there's enough room for quite a bit of stuff.

[3/31/2013 10:25:41 PM] Josie: However, if you're going to be doing any cargo runs you're likely going to need a few more people just to move things around in a timely manner.

[3/31/2013 10:26:59 PM | Edited 10:27:07 PM] Coil: ((Coil keeps his past secret, me thinks.))

[3/31/2013 10:28:28 PM] Josie: And things do need to be moved from place to place. It's a big universe out there, populated by a variety of organisms. All the humanoids--bipeds with two arms and two legs--are genetically augmented humans. Some can see in the dark, others have tails, long ears or extra fingers. Humans and their augments have been seeded across dozens, hundreds of planets, and there's incredible diversity in culture and biology--augmentation has led even to insectoid and plantoid humans.

[3/31/2013 10:31:08 PM] Josie: There are also intelligent alien species out there, but none of them resemble humans in any degree. One species looks more like butterflies (they even call themselves that in the vernacular) and they're timid, gentle people who were more or less taken over by the human species because they didn't really say no. They aren't mind-readers, but their ability to read people (even of other species) makes them seem like they are.

[3/31/2013 10:32:10 PM] Josie: There are some even weirder ones out there, too, but again, nothing resembling humans in the slightest.

[3/31/2013 10:32:50 PM] Josie: However, if you see a giant spider wandering around in a space station it's a much better idea to ask him if he's looking for the restroom than to blast him.

[3/31/2013 10:35:17 PM] Josie: Technology has continued to progress. Space travel is easy, but it does take fuel, which is why Coil needs to continue to work and can't simply sit on a nest egg. A translation engine enables communication between the humans as well as between the different species, and medically, the cultures have cooperated enough that there's good information on most known species.

[3/31/2013 10:37:31 PM] Josie: One important innovation is the development of the Arts. The first alien species humans met as they began to colonize beyond their own solar system could do miraculous things, things that seemed like magic, with the "elements." Not the scientific elements, but the granular elements the earliest scientists once believed in--earth, air, water and fire.

[3/31/2013 10:38:44 PM] Josie: The humans believed this gift was specific to the aliens, but were soon gently corrected--some humans could do it too, if they took the time to practice, though not all had the gift, and even those who did, could only practice in one of the four areas.

[3/31/2013 10:39:06 PM] Josie: Which species taught the humans has been lost in time.

[3/31/2013 10:40:53 PM] Josie: Partly, that's due to politics. Over time, various colonies became allies, as did various groups of aliens, and now most of the governing of known space is done by the Coalition, a republic of sorts that is controlled by a massive voting body as well as a federal branch charged with getting things done.

[3/31/2013 10:41:51 PM] Josie: The Coalition is a beaurocratic nightmare, and they're far from enjoyable to work with. There are a few groups opposing them, but they mainly do so through trade sanctions and off-the-books piracy, because it's not worth going up against the Coalition's military might.

[3/31/2013 10:42:04 PM] Josie: It's also not worth going up against their beaurocracy.

[3/31/2013 10:42:29 PM] Coil: ((Picturing the Central Bureacracy from Futurama.))

[3/31/2013 10:44:26 PM] Josie: In order to gain a license to do the kinds of jobs Coil does, he had also to make certain concessions to the Coalition--namely, that he will take independent contracting jobs from them whenever they require it. They do pay for these jobs, and statutorily, they do have to pay at the going rate, so he won't be getting stiffed, but he may feel a certain reluctance to work with the government that technically, wants him for dozens of murders.

[3/31/2013 10:45:24 PM] Coil: ((Awkward!))

[3/31/2013 10:45:29 PM] Josie: Very awkward.

[3/31/2013 10:47:33 PM] Josie: Coil is on his way to one of those very-awkward assignments right now. This time it happens to be a simple passenger run--a Captain Lark and four other unspecified passengers need to be transported from one of the Inner Worlds to a mid-range space station that seems to be located between anything important and anything else important.

[3/31/2013 10:48:49 PM] Josie: He is probably in the cockpit, piloting the ship--though she will run on autopilot--when Vir clears his throat behind Coil.

[3/31/2013 10:49:16 PM] Josie: Vir: Sir. How long will we be on the planet?

[3/31/2013 10:50:52 PM] Coil: Hopefully not long.

[3/31/2013 10:52:19 PM] Josie: Vir: There are some parts I would like to purchase.

[3/31/2013 10:52:36 PM] Coil: Long enough to pick up our passengers.  I'd like to make this run as short as possible.

[3/31/2013 10:52:42 PM] Coil: Maybe a couple of hours?

[3/31/2013 10:53:28 PM] Josie: Vir: Not enough time. However, there is nothing that could not wait until we rid ourselves of the passenger.

[3/31/2013 10:53:36 PM] Josie: He frowns.

[3/31/2013 10:53:49 PM] Coil: Government jobs always make me nervous.

[3/31/2013 10:54:55 PM] Josie: To be fair, Vir frowns a *lot*. It's sort of his default expression. He's a young man, probably around 25 or so, with a pale complexion, large blue eyes and dark blue hair. Whether that's natural or dye is hard to say.

[3/31/2013 10:55:07 PM] Josie: Vir: I too.

[3/31/2013 10:57:56 PM] Josie: He hesitates, briefly, and then turns to go back to the engine room.

[3/31/2013 10:58:46 PM] Coil: Coil raises an eyebrow but lets it go, settling back into his seat.

[3/31/2013 11:00:14 PM] Josie: You're approaching the station at the moment. You won't have to actually land on the planet, which is good--saves on fuel. You just have to dock with the associated space station.

[3/31/2013 11:02:12 PM] Josie: Then pick up the passengers, and then be on your way!

[3/31/2013 11:04:49 PM] Coil: Coil sighs, watching the space station getting closer.

[3/31/2013 11:06:30 PM] Josie: You dock with a thud, and the ship shakes.

[3/31/2013 11:06:46 PM] Josie: The intercom crackles on; it's Vir. "I will have a look at that."

[3/31/2013 11:07:08 PM] Josie: ... apparently he felt the thud was too jarring.

[3/31/2013 11:07:16 PM] Coil: 'Preciate it.

[3/31/2013 11:07:52 PM] Josie: Then the communications panel flares up again. This time it's a woman's voice, flat and no-nonsense. "Permission to come aboard."

[3/31/2013 11:10:52 PM] Coil: Coil clicks back.  "Acknowledged."  Then he hits the intercom.  "I'm going to retrieve our passenger, Vir.  hold down the fort. "

[3/31/2013 11:11:09 PM] Josie: Vir: Consider it held.

[3/31/2013 11:12:03 PM] Josie: The docking mechanism leads into the hold.

[3/31/2013 11:12:19 PM] Coil: Coil goes to meet his mysterious passenger!

[3/31/2013 11:12:30 PM] Josie: You *could* open the door from the cockpit, but that would mean that strangers were milling around in your hold.

[3/31/2013 11:13:13 PM] Josie: While there's nothing incriminating in there *that you know of*, it's best not to take chances.

[3/31/2013 11:13:54 PM] Josie: It takes you a few minutes to get down there, and when you do it's still empty, just like it was before. You still don't have enough crew to take any cargo assignments, really.

[3/31/2013 11:14:51 PM] Josie: The door is a heavy one, doubled up, as is standard for any airlock.

[3/31/2013 11:15:09 PM] Coil: Coil opens it!

[3/31/2013 11:15:10 PM] Josie: It does need to be opened from the inside.

[3/31/2013 11:16:01 PM] Josie: The door slides open without a sound; and Coil finds himself face-to-face with a woman carrying a sort of double-wide briefcase, or possibly an oversized lunchbox.

[3/31/2013 11:18:21 PM] Josie: She's wearing the standard dark-grey, black-edged uniform of the Coalition military, and her collar and sleeves bear the insignia of a captain. She herself has blonde hair coiled into a knot at the back of her neck, unadorned, and although she's very pretty, with blue-green eyes, she also has an aura of no-bullshit-I'm-a-professional.

[3/31/2013 11:19:28 PM] Josie: Woman: Captain. Permission for five to come aboard.

[3/31/2013 11:20:52 PM] Coil: Captain Lark?

[3/31/2013 11:21:46 PM] Josie: She nods. "And the prisoners."

[3/31/2013 11:23:05 PM] Coil: Prisoners?

[3/31/2013 11:23:25 PM] Josie: Lark: My prisoners, yes. The other four passengers.

[3/31/2013 11:24:39 PM] Coil: I wasn't told they were prisoners.  Are they dangerous?

[3/31/2013 11:24:49 PM] Josie: Lark: Only if released.

[3/31/2013 11:25:33 PM] Josie: Lark: The most dangerous ones are either sedated or otherwise contained.

[3/31/2013 11:26:05 PM] Coil: .... all right, come aboard.

[3/31/2013 11:27:40 PM | Edited 11:27:55 PM] Coil: Coil steps aside for Lark and her Fabulous Foursome.

[3/31/2013 11:27:45 PM] Josie: She nods.

[3/31/2013 11:29:44 PM] Josie: She holds up a small remote-control-looking object and touches one of the buttons before stepping in. Two people follow her, both women. One is tall and standing fully erect, hands held behind her in electronic bindings, loose dark hair falling everywhere. She glares at you as she passes you.

[3/31/2013 11:30:22 PM] Josie: The second woman has reddish hair, but it's hard to tell much of anything else, as she seems to be cowering a bit as she passes you by.

[3/31/2013 11:30:49 PM] Coil: Coil watches them, unimpressed.

[3/31/2013 11:31:03 PM] Josie: Then a gurney suspended by antigrav floats by you. It's a coffin-shaped object, probably containing the sedated prisoner.

[3/31/2013 11:31:25 PM] Josie: All of them--the captain and her three prisoners--step into the hold. There's no sign of a fourth person.

[3/31/2013 11:31:41 PM] Coil: I was told you had four passengers.

[3/31/2013 11:32:07 PM] Josie: Lark: I do.

[3/31/2013 11:32:25 PM] Coil: ... all right, then.

[3/31/2013 11:33:10 PM] Josie: Lark holds up the case. "A proscribed species. We're bringing it for interrogation and scheduled destruction."

[3/31/2013 11:34:13 PM] Coil: I see.  Where will you be wanting to secure your ambulatory passengers?

[3/31/2013 11:35:15 PM] Josie: Lark: With me. If there's no compartment big enough, we'll stay in the hold.

[3/31/2013 11:35:28 PM] Josie: The redhead lets out a choked sob.

[3/31/2013 11:36:31 PM] Coil: You can stay in one of the rooms.  They should be big enough.

[3/31/2013 11:37:57 PM] Josie: Lark: Excellent. The containment coffin can stay here in the hold; it has biometric locks on top of the ordinary safety precautions, in case you're worried about your crew.

[3/31/2013 11:39:21 PM] Coil: Coil nods.  "All right then.  Follow me, I'll show you to your accomadations."

[3/31/2013 11:39:54 PM] Josie: She nods, and secures the coffin easily.

[3/31/2013 11:40:36 PM] Josie: The redhead girl is still crying; the dark-haired woman glares at her derisively; Lark mostly ignores them both, and all three women follow you.

[3/31/2013 11:41:33 PM] Coil: Coil shows her to a room big enough for the three of them.

[3/31/2013 11:43:21 PM] Josie: Lark: Is there anything I should know about? Emergency procedures, meal times?

[3/31/2013 11:46:02 PM] Coil: At the moment, I only have one crewman, we pretty much eat when we're hungry.

[3/31/2013 11:46:38 PM] Josie: Lark: ... ah, I see.

[3/31/2013 11:46:59 PM] Coil: Emergency procedures... well.  If we're in trouble, just do what I say, you'll be fine.

[3/31/2013 11:47:12 PM] Josie: Lark: ... what if you're incapacitated?

[3/31/2013 11:47:38 PM] Coil: Then listen to Vir, my engineer.

[3/31/2013 11:48:43 PM] Josie: Lark, impatiently: And if you're both incapacitated?

[3/31/2013 11:50:05 PM] Coil: Let's hope that doesn't happen.

[3/31/2013 11:50:17 PM] Josie: Lark's mouth tightens. "I prefer not to rely upon hope."

[3/31/2013 11:50:34 PM] Josie: There's a sob from the little redheaded girl, who's leaning up against a wall.

[3/31/2013 11:55:14 PM] Coil: Coil gives a little smile.  "Welcome to life on the fringe, Captain."

[3/31/2013 11:55:50 PM] Josie: She frowns. "... quite. I shall make my own plans, then."

[3/31/2013 11:56:30 PM] Coil: Do you have reason to believe that something unforseen will be happening?

[3/31/2013 11:56:57 PM] Josie: Lark: Just a bad feeling, that's all. Nothing more. The one in the hold has ... friends.

[3/31/2013 11:57:26 PM] Coil: I see.  Well.  Shall we get underway?

[3/31/2013 11:57:55 PM] Josie: Lark: Quite. You'll receive your fee on arrival.

[3/31/2013 11:58:48 PM] Coil: Coil nods.

[3/31/2013 11:59:08 PM | Edited 11:59:38 PM] Josie: Lark sets her case down, carefully, and the redheaded girl moves over to you. "Help. Please help, I didn't do anything, I'm innocent!" She looks up at you--she has cat's eyes.

[3/31/2013 11:59:52 PM] Josie: Probably a human-augment. That would explain the odd posture, too.

[3/31/2013 11:59:53 PM] Coil: Coil looks at her.  "Sorry, miss."

[4/1/2013 12:00:19 AM] Josie: Lark: It's not a life sentence. Leave him alone or I'll sedate you again.

[4/1/2013 12:00:44 AM] Josie: The redhead cringes, and backs off. "No, no need, no."

[4/1/2013 12:01:17 AM] Coil: No need for that, Captain.

[4/1/2013 12:02:10 AM] Josie: She slides down against a wall and curls up in a little catball.

[4/1/2013 12:02:24 AM] Josie: The other prisoner looks like she'd like to give her a kick, but she doesn't.

[4/1/2013 12:02:33 AM] Josie: Lark: Excellent. Good day.

[4/1/2013 12:03:34 AM] Coil: Coil nods, and heads to the cockpit to set off!

[4/1/2013 12:04:24 AM] Josie: You leave the room, hearing the redhead weeping piteously, and head to the cockpit!

[4/1/2013 12:05:36 AM] Josie: You undock and start your trip without incident, and you don't hear from Lark at all the rest of the day. Eventually you'll have to either put the ship on autopilot and sleep, or swap with Vir, who doesn't seem to sleep much, if at all, that you've ever noticed. He's not a pilot but he's quite knowledgeable enough to keep an eye on things during a milk run like this one.

[4/1/2013 12:06:23 AM] Coil: Coil will do that, trade off with Vir with orders to wake him if anything happens.

[4/1/2013 12:07:09 AM] Josie: He meets you in the cockpit, carrying some sort of part with a lot of wires sticking out of it. One of his many projects, most likely.

[4/1/2013 12:07:27 AM] Coil: what's that?

[4/1/2013 12:09:18 AM] Josie: Vir: Part of the engine.

[4/1/2013 12:09:41 AM] Josie: He starts to give you details.

[4/1/2013 12:10:19 AM] Josie: Essentially, he's rigging a replacement part for another replacement part. Of course he's far, far, far more technical than that.

[4/1/2013 12:11:07 AM] Coil: Coil nods.  "All right.   As long as the engine doesn't need it to run."

[4/1/2013 12:11:55 AM] Josie: Vir: Not yet.

[4/1/2013 12:14:37 AM] Coil: Good man.  Listen, this captain has four prisoners on board.  One of em is locked up in a coffin in the cargo bay.  The others are with the captain in her room.

[4/1/2013 12:15:22 AM] Josie: Vir blinks. "Prisoners? Our destination isn't near a prison."

[4/1/2013 12:15:40 AM] Coil: Yeah.  Hushed up goverment business.

[4/1/2013 12:15:54 AM] Josie: Vir: Not our business.

[4/1/2013 12:16:30 AM] Coil: Pretty much.

[4/1/2013 12:16:44 AM] Josie: Vir: I will keep my eyes open.

[4/1/2013 12:18:52 AM] Coil: Good man.

[4/1/2013 12:18:59 AM] Coil: Coil claps him on the shoulder and heads to his quarters!

[4/1/2013 12:20:05 AM] Josie: Coil almost knocks him over--he's pretty slight, though definitely masculine.

[4/1/2013 12:20:28 AM] Josie: Coil heads to his quarters and sleeps!

[4/1/2013 12:21:24 AM] Josie: He wakes up in the middle of the night with the feeling that something is wrong.

[4/1/2013 12:23:15 AM | Edited 12:23:20 AM] Coil: Coil gets up, gets dressed, grabs his side arm, and heads to the bridge!

[4/1/2013 12:23:52 AM] Josie: Vir is there, still, fiddling with the wires in that doodad.

[4/1/2013 12:24:06 AM] Josie: According to the instruments, you're still on-course.

[4/1/2013 12:24:10 AM] Coil: Everything okay up here?

[4/1/2013 12:24:17 AM] Josie: Vir: Yes.

[4/1/2013 12:24:35 AM] Coil: Hmm.  All right.

[4/1/2013 12:24:58 AM] Josie: Vir: Is there a problem?

[4/1/2013 12:26:07 AM] Coil: No, no, it's fine.  Just one of those annoying feelings.  I'm going to check on our guests.

[4/1/2013 12:26:46 AM] Josie: Vir: I will stay here.

[4/1/2013 12:26:58 AM] Coil: Good idea.

[4/1/2013 12:27:03 AM] Coil: Coil heads down to the cargo bay.

[4/1/2013 12:28:35 AM] Josie: As soon as he steps in someone tries to shoot at him.

[4/1/2013 12:29:00 AM] Josie: Whoever it is misses, but the beam weapon strikes the wall right next to his ear.

[4/1/2013 12:29:44 AM] Coil: Coil pulls his weapon and points it at whoever shot at him.  "Who's there?"

[4/1/2013 12:30:37 AM] Josie: There's no answer, but a couple more shots. One singes the hair on Coil's head.

[4/1/2013 12:32:51 AM] Coil: Coil frowns and takes a shot back, trying to hit an arm or leg.

[4/1/2013 12:33:33 AM] Josie: There's a yelp and a thud.

[4/1/2013 12:33:40 AM] Josie: Then silence.

[4/1/2013 12:34:58 AM] Coil: Coil creeps forward.

[4/1/2013 12:35:32 AM] Josie: There's a sort of a pained gasp for air. "Got.. him."

[4/1/2013 12:36:08 AM] Coil: ((who is it?  Can i tell?  Male voice or female voice?))

[4/1/2013 12:37:47 AM] Josie: It's a female voice. It could be Lark, though it's hard to be certain.

[4/1/2013 12:38:02 AM] Josie: Someone coughs, wetly.

[4/1/2013 12:38:30 AM] Coil: Coil moves over to her, cautiously.

[4/1/2013 12:40:23 AM] Josie: When you get close enough to see her--it's very dark here--you also step into a great big puddle of her blood. She's also the one that's coughing.

[4/1/2013 12:40:40 AM] Josie: There's two other people lying on the ground next to her, too.

[4/1/2013 12:41:17 AM] Josie: One's the dark-haired woman prisoner, and the other is a man--a very big, very tall one, lying face down. He has what looks like Lark's sidearm in one hand, and he's probably the one that was shooting you.

[4/1/2013 12:41:27 AM] Josie: The woman prisoner's eyes are open and she looks quite dead.

[4/1/2013 12:42:05 AM] Coil: Lark?  What the hell happened here?

[4/1/2013 12:44:15 AM] Josie: Lark: Escape attempt. She was programmed to...

[4/1/2013 12:44:40 AM] Josie: She coughs, and spits some blood out so she can keep talking.

[4/1/2013 12:45:19 AM] Josie: Lark: ... to let him out. Listen. He's dangerous. The others... don't matter. Box will die anyway.

[4/1/2013 12:45:40 AM] Josie: Lark: Don't let him go. Do you hear me?

[4/1/2013 12:46:51 AM] Coil: She was programmed to let the guy in the coffin out?  What should I do with the box?

[4/1/2013 12:47:52 AM] Josie: Lark: Let it... let it...

[4/1/2013 12:48:45 AM] Josie: Her eyes go a bit blank and she settles back on the floor, dead.

[4/1/2013 12:49:20 AM] Coil: Coil frowns, and clicks his comlink.  "Vir.  Get down here."

[4/1/2013 12:49:37 AM] Josie: Vir: Yes.

[4/1/2013 12:49:56 AM] Josie: You notice that the box is glowing.

[4/1/2013 12:50:02 AM] Josie: It's also counting down.

[4/1/2013 12:51:11 AM] Coil: Coil frowns, and looks around for the fourth prisoner.

[4/1/2013 12:52:03 AM] Josie: You don't see her.

[4/1/2013 12:52:50 AM] Josie: You do hear a voice coming from the box. "I realize these aren't the most favorable circumstances under which to meet someone, but good afternoon. I am hoping that you can save my life."

[4/1/2013 12:53:08 AM] Coil: What's going on here, box?

[4/1/2013 12:55:35 AM] Josie: Box: I'm not a box, per se. You see the countdown? We are under somewhat straitened circumstances, I am afraid. My unfortunate jailer possessed a certain substance she had to introduce into my accomodations here in order to preserve my life, and alas, the substance has been destroyed by the goon you see before you.

[4/1/2013 12:56:06 AM] Josie: Box: As a result, I will shortly perish unless you see fit to release the lock on this box and let me make my own accomodation.

[4/1/2013 12:57:17 AM] Coil: Captain Lark seemed to be pretty dead set on letting you die.

[4/1/2013 12:58:24 AM] Josie: Box: Alas, she did indeed. You do realize that as a member of a proscribed species I am condemned to die based solely on that basis.

[4/1/2013 12:59:19 AM] Coil: Why are you proscribed?

[4/1/2013 12:59:29 AM] Josie: Vir turns up, finally. He seems to have found an antique blaster from somewhere.

[4/1/2013 1:00:41 AM] Josie: Box: It would take rather a long to explain, time which, I am afraid, I do not possess. If you would let me out I would be greatly obliged. If you will not... I suppose I shall try to die with dignity, although that will be rather difficult to do in quarters of this kind.

[4/1/2013 1:01:04 AM] Josie: Vir eyes Coil, then the prisoners, then the dead cop. "Sir."

[4/1/2013 1:01:23 AM] Coil: Yeah.  It's all gone horribly wrong, Vir.

[4/1/2013 1:03:17 AM] Coil: Here's the problem, box.  I accepted a mission from the Coalition to deliver several prisoners to a space station.  I assume they would accept proof that you had died in the stead of living prisoners.  So if I'm going to get in *major* trouble witht he Coalition, I need to know what will happen if I let you out.

[4/1/2013 1:04:26 AM] Josie: Box: ... I will survive. If you wish to turn me in, you may do so; I will not be likely to be able to stop you.

[4/1/2013 1:04:55 AM] Josie: Vir: It wants to get out?

[4/1/2013 1:05:21 AM] Josie: He puts his blaster away and checks the other prisoners, passing quickly from the woman to the man.

[4/1/2013 1:05:45 AM] Josie: With great difficulty, Vir shoves the man back into the empty coffin and turns it on.

[4/1/2013 1:05:45 AM] Coil: Will you infect us with a pathogen?  Will we grow wings because of exposure to your rays, or whatever?

[4/1/2013 1:06:12 AM] Josie: Box: I do not emit rays and I am quite healthy, thank you.

[4/1/2013 1:06:24 AM] Josie: Box: No one will be harmed.

[4/1/2013 1:08:55 AM] Coil: ... I'm sorry, box.  I can't risk the trouble the Coalition could give us if they found out I let you out.

[4/1/2013 1:09:56 AM] Josie: Box: ... please. I would prefer to die outside this box, if I  must.

[4/1/2013 1:10:15 AM] Josie: Vir: I can scan it to see what's inside.

[4/1/2013 1:11:02 AM] Coil: ((How much time does the box have?))

[4/1/2013 1:11:06 AM] Josie: He pulls out a pad and starts tapping at it.

[4/1/2013 1:11:06 AM] Josie: About two minutes.

[4/1/2013 1:12:07 AM] Josie: Vir: One life-form. Small, about six inches. No radiation source.

[4/1/2013 1:14:19 AM] Josie: Box: I beg of you, mercy.

[4/1/2013 1:14:53 AM] Coil: Coil looks at Vir.  "Stay here.  Don't open that."

[4/1/2013 1:15:09 AM] Coil: Coil runs over to check Lark's cabin for the other prisoner.

[4/1/2013 1:15:47 AM] Josie: Vir nods.

[4/1/2013 1:16:23 AM] Josie: She's in the corner, cowering and muttering to herself. "Not moving. Not moving. Not my fault, not my fault. Didn't do it. Where I'm supposed to be. Not escaping."

[4/1/2013 1:16:40 AM] Coil: You okay?

[4/1/2013 1:17:00 AM] Josie: Woman: Fine, I'm fine. Not escaping. Not my fault. Didn't do it.

[4/1/2013 1:17:10 AM] Coil: What happened?

[4/1/2013 1:17:39 AM] Josie: Woman: She helped him go. She helped him go.

[4/1/2013 1:17:53 AM] Josie: Woman: He shot her, but I wasn't there, I was here the whole time.

[4/1/2013 1:18:22 AM] Coil: All right.  Stay here.

[4/1/2013 1:19:11 AM] Josie: She nods like a bobblehead doll.

[4/1/2013 1:19:34 AM] Coil: Coil goes back to the cargo bay.

[4/1/2013 1:20:27 AM] Josie: There's about thirty seconds left on the box.

[4/1/2013 1:20:50 AM] Josie: Box: Well. I suppose this is it, then.

[4/1/2013 1:21:24 AM] Coil: .... damn it.

[4/1/2013 1:21:30 AM] Coil: Coil opens the box.

[4/1/2013 1:21:43 AM] Josie: The box opens!

[4/1/2013 1:22:33 AM] Josie: Inside is a ... well, it actually looks like a black-and-white striped slug, with bright electric-blue antennae.

[4/1/2013 1:23:02 AM] Josie: The slug slimes its way out of the box, moving surprisingly quickly for its sluggy looks.

[4/1/2013 1:23:26 AM] Josie: Vir eyes it; he's kneeling beside the dark-haired female prisoner.

[4/1/2013 1:23:35 AM] Josie: He has his hands in her chest.

[4/1/2013 1:23:46 AM] Coil: What are you doing, Vir?

[4/1/2013 1:24:19 AM] Josie: Vir: Trying to determine what circuits are preventing her from consciousness.

[4/1/2013 1:24:28 AM] Josie: Vir: ... she is an android.

[4/1/2013 1:24:58 AM] Josie: The slug slimes over to Lark and crawls up onto the corpse.

[4/1/2013 1:26:57 AM] Coil: An android?  Can you make it so she doesn't kill us?

[4/1/2013 1:27:07 AM] Coil: Cause that would be fantastic.

[4/1/2013 1:27:30 AM] Josie: Vir: Given that her memory circuits have been destroyed, I find it unlikely that she would remember wanting to kill us.

[4/1/2013 1:27:39 AM] Josie: The slug crawls into the corpse's mouth.

[4/1/2013 1:31:40 AM] Coil: ((The male corpse?))

[4/1/2013 1:31:56 AM] Josie: Nope, the man is still alive, and he's in the coffin.

[4/1/2013 1:32:08 AM] Josie: The only corpses are the android's, which Vir is working on, and Lark's.

[4/1/2013 1:32:23 AM] Coil: ((Oh.  Lark or the android?))

[4/1/2013 1:32:27 AM] Josie: Lark.

[4/1/2013 1:32:43 AM] Coil: What are you doing?

[4/1/2013 1:33:16 AM] Josie: There's no answer; possibly the slug can't speak. It didn't seem to have anything resembling a human mouth.

[4/1/2013 1:34:44 AM] Josie: There's some icky-sounding noises from the corpse, and then Lark opens her eyes again, sitting up. "... that's better."

[4/1/2013 1:36:16 AM] Coil: ... well, that's disconcerting.

[4/1/2013 1:37:10 AM] Josie: Lark: Is it? My apologies. I personally found being in a box quite disconcerting.

[4/1/2013 1:37:41 AM] Josie: She looks down at the gaping hole in her chest and frowns at it.

[4/1/2013 1:38:01 AM] Coil: Well, you're controlling the body of a dead woman.  And you'll probably start smelling before long.

[4/1/2013 1:39:00 AM] Josie: Lark: Fortunately, I produce enzymes that prevent that eventuality. Of course, there will need to be some... upkeep, if I am to continue in this host.

[4/1/2013 1:39:40 AM] Coil: Is this why your species is proscribed, box?

[4/1/2013 1:40:44 AM] Josie: Lark: Yes. I myself have never harmed another sentient being, but there are others of us who are not so concerned with ethics.

[4/1/2013 1:41:27 AM] Coil: Can you take over living hosts?

[4/1/2013 1:42:05 AM] Josie: Lark: ... the idea is not an attractive one.

[4/1/2013 1:42:40 AM] Coil: But you can.

[4/1/2013 1:42:42 AM] Josie: She looks at her hands curiously.

[4/1/2013 1:43:02 AM] Josie: Lark: No.

[4/1/2013 1:43:21 AM] Josie: Lark: Possession kills a host.

[4/1/2013 1:44:19 AM] Josie: Lark: That is why the idea is unattractive. Slaying sentients is never necessary.

[4/1/2013 1:44:29 AM] Coil: Mmm.

[4/1/2013 1:44:43 AM] Coil: Coil sits down on a cargo crate.

[4/1/2013 1:45:19 AM] Josie: Lark: It is a shame this one died. She was rather interesting.

[4/1/2013 1:45:48 AM] Coil: .... you can access her mind?

[4/1/2013 1:46:39 AM] Josie: Lark: Yes. I arrived in time to preserve much of it and it is accessible to me.

[4/1/2013 1:46:43 AM] Josie: Vir: I find you disturbing.

[4/1/2013 1:46:54 AM] Coil: You and me both, Vir.

[4/1/2013 1:47:42 AM] Josie: Lark: Understandable. Personally, I find your habit of walking around naked disturbing. I suppose you do have clothing, but without a host... one would feel quite naked.

[4/1/2013 1:48:13 AM] Coil: Coil rubs his eyes.

[4/1/2013 1:50:18 AM] Josie: , by the way.

[4/1/2013 1:51:16 AM] Josie: Lark, sadly: She was very dedicated to her cause. Of course, that did require committing genocide, but I suppose we *are* a threat to your species, technically.

[4/1/2013 1:53:31 AM] Josie: Vir: How often do you need to change hosts?

[4/1/2013 1:53:49 AM] Josie: Lark, surprised: Why, never, if one takes proper care of them.