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  • 📅 April 2024 is YE 46.3 in the RP.

RP [YSS Kōun] Bearing a Cross

Immortal Cyan

The Cyan Neko
RP Date
YE 44.6
RP Location
YSS Kōun
Brig, YSS Kōun

Kanzaki Akahana - @Immortal Cyan
Aliset Kōun - @HarperMadi
Qrr'te Tutala - @Deleted User
001-A-984 "Nix" - @ShadowWalker

Kanzaki Akahana's first instinct was to immerse herself in VCE.

Mercifully, her cabin was empty at the moment, but the Snowy Neko didn't think it would be long before one of her roommates returned from lunch, no doubt hoping to interrogate her about what had happened in the wardroom. It was a question that she had yet to answer for herself, nor did she even want to confront the event.

If she could, she would have deleted the memory entirely.

However, that wasn't an option. And so, Akahana floated up into her bunk and utilizing her SPINE, connected to her private VCE server. Upon connecting, the Snowy Neko found herself in an alternate reality—an open clearing surrounded by a peaceful forest with a few domestic cats lounging close by. At the center of the clearing was a white pedal harp and a small chair. Without hesitating, Akahana floated into the chair and began to practice a few scales on her instrument, to a small audience of purring cats.

Akahana knew that this couldn't last forever, but for a moments, she could pretend that it did.

A small notification popped up that Aliset Koun had been arrested on charges relating to the telepathic assault on Akahana.

Overclocking her mind and by extension, her personal VCE server to the end of spending as much "time" within her reality as possible, what passed as thirty minutes in reality was two hours for Akahana. Naturally, the Snowy Neko spent the entire time practicing her harp, letting herself fall into a flow as she ran through scales and arpeggios, before playing a basic melody. It went without saying that she had initially planned to ignore the notification, but it was only when ten minutes had passed in real time and she registered the presence of her roommate's at the door did she decide to occupy herself with something else.

And so, as her roommates entered her cabin, Akahana left not even a moment later, without giving them a chance to ask her about the events that had transpired in the wardroom. Of course, since only ten minutes had passed since the incident, she didn't have the option of work, as much as she wanted it. Her shift wasn't until later, unfortunately.

That left only one option—attending to the notification.

Akahana blinked when she processed it, disbelief coloring her expression as she came to a halt in the middle of the passageway. On a whim, the Snowy Neko decided to see it with her own eyes, still disbelieving of the fact that the incident was so serious that Aliset had been confined to the brig. Before long, she arrived at the brig, which now had a navy-panelled MP standing guard at the entrance—a telltale sign that someone was being confined. An unreadable expression was borne across the Snowy Neko's alabaster features as she was let through, her gaze unfocused, yet intense as she floated towards Aliset's room.

"Kōun-Chui." Akahana spoke. The Snowy Neko's her tone was not judgemental, but rather, disbelieving.

It was then that Tutala entered the room, a solemn expression on ther face. They sat down silently, holding in their hand a thermos-like device. As they took their seat, they silently poured out into a few cups a thick brown liquid that foamed slightly at the top. It smelled of sweet and bitter chocolate with various unrecognisable spices and aromas. It was complex and delicious smelling. After the drink was poured, the CMO finally said,

"I understand what both Aliset and I did was absolutely deplorable, and how I enabled it. Take this as an offering of peace from me. I hope you find it palatable."

Turning to Aliset, Tutala stared into her with a gaze that could tear apart souls. She clearly was not over the revelation of what had just happened. She just sat there, continuing to stare, and continuing to speak to Akahana.

"I am truly sorry for my actions, and am indebted to you. I will not forgive myself for what I partook in for quite some time. And this... Qarpok... has no right to be serving on this vessel."

Aliset rolled off her cot in the brig, approaching the barrier before sitting cross legged, itching at the pink jumpsuit issued to prisoners. It might have been notable to the telepath and the PSC that there was no psionic presence in the cell, despite it being locked with a tsulrati inside. "All three of us have cultures that have extremely harsh punishments for things like this."

She took a deep breath as she put the words for her statement together as she rubbed at the oily blood stain on the side of her prisoner's jump suit. "When I saw you blushing as you stared at Alastair, in stead of severing the mental connection, I pressed my own memories of sleeping with the Captain across the link. I did not expect you to act on this memory. Even so, this qualifies as a violation of your mind, which is punishible by death according to the Senti first Law. In Yamatai, it can be treated as a sexual assault, also punishable by execution. I do not know what the Random Alien punishment for such a heinous crime is. But considering the three people here, I would offer you the choice of which legal system to press your charges in. I was power drunk with my new telepathic ability, and instead of becoming an asset to my crew and family, now represent an immediate risk to the same. I expect to be neutralized as such. Nix implanted my null glass in my chest for the first part of that."

There were two apologies for Akahana to contemplate—one from Tutala and one from Aliset. However, Akahana had yet to process the incident herself, having distracted herself with VCE, as a means to avoid confronting the humiliation she had suffered and what that might mean for her future on the Kōun.

If there was to be a future at all.

First, Akahana glanced at the thermos offered by Tutala, taking in its sweet, chocolately scent which her SAINT training warned her against. She had a slight sweet tooth, but the Snowy Neko sensed that she was already making a mistake by visiting Aliset at the brig. As such, it didn't take long for her to decide that she didn't want to make what could be another one by accepting Tutala's offered drink.

Raising her hand towards Tutala, Akahana shook her head in polite refusal. "I appreciate the drink, but I'm afraid I can't accept it." The Snowy Neko began. And yet, a part of her sensed that the apologies were genuine, but once more...

She felt the urge to fall into her SAINT training.

"I...I..." Akahana stumbled over her words, a rare thing for a Nekovalkyrja. "I don't know what to say. Thank you for the apologies, I can tell that they are genuine." She began. "I just want to know..."

A short pause.

"Should I carry the responsibility for what happened back there? With me...kissing the Alastair?"

"I think that one's on me," Aliset kept itching at the wound in her side. "I think that can be attributed to the way tsulrati brains process and store memories. We have a deep interconnectedness of mind and body, I'm starting to think that's a solid chunk of the psionic aspect of my species before the... Awakening, I think it was called. Sorry, Bit of brain fog."

Shaking her head, she continued, flexing her fingers as though struggling to feel them. "Due to that, our memories are more sensory dense than those of some other species. So the memory of my encounter with him was probably a lot more... intense than your own memories might be. Depending on your age, that could have caused some behavioral changes. Temporarily, anyway. If I knew more, I'd have a bit better of a frame of reference."

Tutala nodded, moving to take a sip of the liquid herself. As a fellow intel agent, she knew the feeling all too well. As she looked towards Akahana, they seemed to calm down, and said, "Anything done under psionic coercion is not your fault. You were influenced by something unfamiliar to you. As for the punishment... well... our people is less than forgiving. It's not death. It's a fate much worse."

"You would normally be sentenced to be relegated to watch out the remainder of your life while a different personality pilots your body, serving those who you have harmed. You would not have control over this body's actions, either, but would be aware of everything going on."

"I apologise too for my visceral reaction to you Aliset, I can see your apology is genuine. At the same time, every sack in my body is telling me to feel nothing but hatred towards you for what you have done. I know you are new to psionics, but this is exactly what I was worried about. How Lundin makes people drunk with power."

Nix tried opening his mouth however given the overclocking of systems his body cooling he opted to do a limited telepathic comunication. "If someone wouldnt mind I would like to volunteer to help Aliset with her psionic abilites over time."

After not seeing a reaction for sometime from Aliset he spoke up despite the crackling of his processers and repeated his statement aloud.

Akahana didn't see the point in denying the astronavigator her biological needs. However, it seemed that the MPs were still trying to figure out whether or not heating up the astronavigator's cell to the temperature her biology demanded would compromise security. Fortunately, Nix-Hei was there to assist, but there was still more that could be done.

Within a microsecond, Akahana put in a request for a heater to be brought to the brig for Aliset. It wasn't much, but it might help at least a little bit.

"I do not want that for you, Kōun-Chui. I would hardly want that for anyone, in fact." Akahana replied to Tutala and Aliset, both. The concept of such a punishment itself was horrifying for her to imagine and was nigh-unconceivable in its harshness. Slowly the Snowy Neko was beginning to understand why Aliset seemed so fatalistic.

However, this also represented an opportunity for Akahana, which the SAINT Analyst could not refuse.

"The Lundin Foundation..." Akahana began. "I was told that it changes people...how?"

Turning her head to Nix for a moment, Aliset offered a small smile. "Don't blow a breaker keeping me alive. I don't know if my body's gonna just shut down anyway."

Returning her focus to Akahana, Aliset took a deep breath. "I... Don't remember a lot. Probably for the better. Cruel psychological testing, forcing us to... It was supposed to be training on how to use and control this. In stead... All it did was make me want to defend everyone more. From them, and from everything else out here. And didn't teach me anything I didn't already know. I'm sworn by culture and oath to serve and protect the peoples of the Kikyo Sector. They claim they want only to preserve. I'm not sure I believe them. The Star Army does not torture people and call it training. Nor the Civil Service. Or the Nepleslian Marine Corps. No self respecting organization does."

"Sounds more like a program to use psionics to make a unthinking soldier capable of pulling hits off with no recollection of it at a later date, a sleeper if you will." Nix stated with his body cooled down enough.

"Doesn't sound too far different from Psychopomp if you ask me." Nix stated with a air of disgust in his voice.

"This is an organization that has Mishhu in their employ. They had a pureblooded Nightmare teaching class. They tamed something that burned all of our skies twice. C was one of the good ones. But I still want to stand over their smoking corpses. I can't promise I wasn't under some psionic coercion, and wish to request a full psychological and psionic checkup before my execution."

Nix Silently fumed in the corner of the room at the mention of Mishu being used. for things like this. "Ali, all I'm going to say is if i meet those who run this kind of thing expect to court martial me because i might gun them down without warning." Nix warned

The more Akahana listened, the more terrifying the Lundin Foundation seemed.

"Wait, a Nightmare-type Mishhuvurthyar?!" She said incredulously, her eyes wide with consternation. "And...does the Captain know about this? Anyone from Star Army Command?"

Akahana was already working up a report in her digital mind. This was something that needed to be investigated by someone higher than her.

Tutala nodded before saying, "The captain knows, to an extent. The Lundin foundation is unadulterated evil. That's what I tried to warn Aliset about. Like many, she was too drunk with opportunity to listen. I won't go into my experience with them, but needless to say it wasn't pleasant."

"The problem is, they're not someone you can just fight with brute force. They're far reaching and nearly untouchable. I try to avoid them at all costs. As for you Nix, you seem to have telepathic abilities. How... strange..."

"No. Nono. Don't you be mistaking my fear and anger for opportunity. I took the risk of being awakened and going to their little camp to gather information. And yes, Akahana, Professor S was a full blooded Nightmare. Nudist with a carapace. Nice enough behaved, but still scary. Also, I kinda got tossed in jail before I could properly brief the Captain on the dangers of the Lunden Foundation."

"This is dangerous." Akahana said, her voice almost shaking. As obvious as it was, the Snowy Neko needed to remind herself of that fact. "And Professor 'S' Do you know her full name?" Without hesitation, Akahana ran a search of PANTHEON for an 'S' correlating to a Nightmare-type Mishhuvurthyar. Unfortunately, she found nothing that was within her clearance level or that she had immediate access to without filing a litany of paperwork. In choosing to become an Analyst, Akahana had known that her career would involve paperwork and other clerical duties, but at times she felt like that was all she did.

"How long were you with the Lundin Foundation?" The Analyst queried.

"Not sure if it was even her real name. We never got anything more than that. An image of a sakura blossom when she spoke to introduce herself. I was there for... A week? Plus or minus a few days?" Aliset gave a shrug. "Fastest way out was through. Shoot for the top of my class, pretend to be numb and stable. Fold my instincts away in their own lazarus trap... You know how it is. Both of you."

Akahana realized that this had turned into a pseudo-interrogation session, almost making her wish that she had been the one to bring the sweets, rather than Tutala. Fortunately, the heater Akahana had previously requested arrived at the brig, carried inside by a Nekovalkyrja MP. Even so, the heater was ultimately a stopgap measure until the MPs figured out whether or not raising the ambient temperature to such an extreme level would compromise security.

"I...have a lot to process." Akahana said simply as she took a relieved breath. "Thank you, Kōun-Chui." The Snowy Neko added. Her tone was grateful, but underlying her words there was still little in the way of trust.

Nix nodded to Tutala, "Yes I have that ability lets just say there's a lot about me that should stay buried in rumors and secrets. Other than that I have a few abilities and was present on the bridge and able to hear Alisets thoughts during her interactions after the snake bite." he stated slipping back on his uniform shirt and old looking green flak jacket.

Tutala looked to Aliset, and then to Nix, and finally to Akahana. They frowned, saying "I wish you had listened... Aliset. We would not be in this situation if you had. Nonetheless, I highly suggest that you do not investigate Lundin. I know you will likely not listen, but it is simply not worth the risk to the livelihood of others. The best thing to do is to just let them be. They do less harm that way."

Tutala took another sip of the drink, and as they did, they sat back, and looked at Akahana. "What do you intend to do with this information? I won't stop you from seeing to it that someone investigates this, but just... try to keep your distance."

"I wish I had listened, too. Really. But we can't change that, now. Thank you for the heater. If I could change any of this, bury it with the rest of my traumas, then I would. But I bled on someone who did not cut me. Do not allow that corruption to spread."

"Commander Tutala, I will take your warnings into consideration. However, the ultimate decision of whether or not to investigate the Lundin Foundation will not fall to me." Akahana said.

"I would advise that you take the matter up with my overseers in SAINT." The Analyst continued. Her tone was still high-pitched, but carried an uncannily omnious ring to it. "For now, I will take my leave. Thank you." With that, Akahana offered a respectful bow towards the assembled group and turned to depart, intending to begin working on her reports. However, upon remembering Tutala's offered drink, the Snowy Neko could not resist the urge to satisfy her cravings. And so, she first went to the fabricators and ordered herself a hot chocolate, before returning to her quarters!