The ship slid back into the hanger, not a scratch on it. Scotty was waiting as Mike decanted and came out of the hatch, scrubbing his hair dry. Another hatch was disgorging his passengers who all were talking among themselves and slightly drunk. One very shapely lady with a small cluster of camera drones orbiting her rushed over to Mike.
“That was the most terrifying thing I have ever experienced. The total lack of control and not knowing what was going to come next. And all through it you were joking with other pilots who would shoot you without a moments hesitation if they could.”
“Ah, miss. That be where the joke was . . . if they could. To slow down for combat would lose time in the race. Those who chose to do dat? Well they was well behind me. Those we was running with, well they was too busy racin to be wasting time trying to target a lil ship like us.”
“That makes sense most times but what about the battleship?”
“Grog? He was sportin smarties. As long as we didn’t get to close there was no worry there at all.”
“But it meant you were not on the move, others might take that chance to shoot competition.”
“They might, but if you noticed I did make us move fairly quick when we took on the orbit and I was watching the proximity. Anybody strayed too close and I swerved a wee bit to keep us from be a, shall we say, temptation. Nobody laid a lock on us durin that stage.”
“You chose to dock to pickup a purchase during the race, do you regret that?”
“Nope, not knowing what would be needed somebody had to be willin to grab it. And this little baby kept us movin, that was for sure. Even with the pauses.”
“So you never knew what the route was?”
“Miss, I opened my comms so you could see what I saw. We swung the long way round at the start since that is when the most damage is done. Once the ships started to spread out things got more focused on ‘go fast’ and less on ‘die now'”
Two of her camera drones were now orbiting him, getting the scene from all sides. He smiled straight at her and shrugged. ‘Maybe we didn’t win but we made it all the way to the finish line.”
“We all thought we were dead, there at the end.” She trilled.
“Yeah, bubbles and the reports of it being a shooting gallery were enough to give a guy second thoughts about jumping in.” Mike admitted. “But we had come so far so I jinked to the right and stretched the ships legs a bit till we were well back an out of range, then I pointed us back into the fray and manage to warp us to within 15 km of the finish line which we covered in a shade over three seconds. Then I got us the hell out of the madhouse before the shooters even noticed we had come back into range. The traps were all on the path leading in so i took us out an alternative way and that seemed to work out juss fine.” He held up a hand. “Now I know y’all may have some more questions but something like that does take it out of a pilot. I am gonna go rest and have some peace for a bit iffen you don’t mind.”
Scotty joined him as he walked away from the ship and the reporter. ‘You know she was damn near sending every signal short of tossing off her clothes.”
“Not on this station.” Mike growled. “And I am a bit too keyed up to be much company right now. Gonna get changed the switch ships and head over to Rens to calm myself with campaignin.”
“That calms you?”
“Tell you about it later, but yeah, for the most part, it does.”
Holy sh*t. I survived the Death Race.
Flew a Comet and boy did that thing move. Fed AB and MWD in it (yes, dual prop)
Was a blast and Rixx and he Tuskers deserve a round of applause. Oh there were some things they could have done better but it was a damn fun race that amazingly started on time!
wow, just wow