This article is a work in progress; It is currently being updated to a full character sheet for the Val'ta, and may reflect outdated information. Please proceed with caution.
“The little helashio could feel the familiar prickling, starting in her too-still tail, traveling up to her rear. From there, it crawled up her back and then began to dig into her brain. Danger, it told her. Danger, my good girl, you are tiny and they are large. But you can take them anyway.” –LSDF Val'ta
Insert personality filler here.
“Three evenings ago she walked into my office. Now, I gather that you and her went to the armoury - you saw the scar on her belly, correct? Bullet hole, puncturing uterus, destroying one of her ovaries, and an unborn child.”
“Do you know who did it to her?”
“LSDF Ar'esr, Captain Her'vak Hunter New Tur'Lista. That was the one digital fingerprint that stood out, and its the only other person I know monstrous enough to do something like this.” – Keib to Mars, LSDF Akahar
The person who is now known as “Elm Petra” has her birthdate listed as YE 7, 1st month, 1st day. Making her thirty years of age. She had parents, and seems to be a genetic original, but her progenitors are named in her file under aliases.
For twenty nine years, everything is darkness.
There are only a handful of reasons for the Lorath Matriarchy to erase a person from existence, and all of them, in the modern era, stem from convicted criminality. To erase a person’s memory so thoroughly, it requires facilities, time, and money. To alter their appearance to obfuscate any attempt to place them in popular media, perhaps for an anonymous trial, takes even more time and effort. For a person—no, for a helashio—to merit so much care that she still lives and breathes following whatever trial, for whatever crimes she must or might have committed, only a very specific and particular sort of circumstances might suffice.
She must have been valuable, or an embarrassment for the powerful. She must have killed someone, but only at the behest of someone else. Or to protect someone else, someone important. Someone who can not be known.
And the person that she was must never again see the light of day.
Her record officially begins with the following designation: “46”.
“46” arrived onboard the Akahar as an attache of the Captain's. Although she is listed under a rankless, civilian ‘custodial’ designation, in actual fact her true purpose was much more common and seems to have had very little to do with actual custodialing. There is no telling how many Captains passed the collared helashio from ship to ship, but there is evidence that they took advantage of the mental stopgap provided by the slave collar that the judicial system had given her. Never truly remembering for more than a few days before the collar muddled any long-term memories, not even 46 was cognizant of the things that happened to her.
When she arrived aboard the LSDF Akahar, it was with an entire latticework of scars all over her body, and a still bleeding gunshot wound in her abdomen—an injury that lost her a child from an unknown father, but gained her the only clue to her past in the form of the lodged bullet’s signature. Captain Her’vak Hunter New Tur’Lista, the Captain of the LSDF Ar’esr.
Her eventual savior was actually a rebel, and a dissident; Executor Mar’zhaz Keib “Howler” New Tur’lista noticed her predicament. He stitched her up, removed the bullet, and placed it in the database. He salved her wounds.
And then he removed her collar and gave her back her freedom.
Under the Executor’s authority, she was enlisted as a Soldier in the Lorath Self Defense Force, a rank-and-file grunt who very, very swiftly proved more capable than the average rank and file. She earned a wage, gained an identity, and began to rediscover who she was as she loyally, in gratitude—or perhaps as an extention of her servitude—began to show her true prowess and colors. She was the first to lay eyes on Medic Merril ‘Soft Touch’ Ghere Lmanel after she had been transformed by her contact with the ancient relics of the Sourcian race, an extinct species who's lingering remains in their search to communicate and numb their loneliness in the knowledge they would never find home, destroyed her.
Elm encountered this unspoken taboo of the Lazarus Consortium early into her new life. These events left trauma and emotional scarring the extent of which is not yet known, which has not yet left her, which may yet be permanent. When she and the others abandoned the Akahar, it was for good, very good reasons.
To say that the Lorath Self Defense Force had no idea what to do with a new soldier of 46’s caliber is, perhaps, an understatement. But as far as paperwork goes, the odd helashio did not have to face this. The Captain of the Akahar was missing in action, presumed dead. The Executor, her savior, Keib, had fled and completely dropped off the grid. Her only companions were the remaining soldiers of the Akahar, the survivors of a fight that could have made them war heroes, if the nature of their commanders hadn’t barred them from ever receiving official credit.
During this general march of shame, and with her comrades to vouch for her, 46 signed her new name to the official orders. Elm Petra, she wrote, and her occupation was Scout.
Scout Elm Petra was much easier to place than 46. The Lorath Self Defense Forces employ hundreds of thousands of people, Lorath and Helashio both. Who would give a damn at gaining one more? Perhaps a few—and it might be why, again, the newly christened Petra found herself boarding a literal ship to nowhere.
The LSDF Val’ta has become her new home.
As for her past, maybe it’s lost for good. Or maybe, eventually, someone will remember her and come looking for her. But in the meanwhile…
Job Descriptor: Scout Elm “Ghost” Petra is the primary scout for the ground team of the LSDF Val’ta. As a Scout, she typically precedes the actual ground team.
Scout Petra is currently a Soldier in the Lorath Self Defense Forces. She makes 2,000 HS per month.
She possesses little wealth to speak of.