by Paul BENTHAM
Maverick alien bounty hunter G12 travels to an uncharted planet to locate a rogue agent.
|Xiaon G12: Core Element.
Chapter 1: Climate Change.
Vickelli square, Vickelli City, Planet Ramduan 12th sector. Year : 4012.
The air was humid and dusty, and the nearest sun shone brightly on the planet Ramduan. The market place of Vickelli square was filled with locals buying a variety of goods, such as cakes, bread, and vegetables.
A senior male five feet in height and ivory-skinned, held onto his walking stick whilst examing pieces of bread on a market stall.
'' Five cents for this crusty piece of bread?'' The Senior male asked a vendor squinting his eyes.
''That's inflation for you?'' The stall owner responded.
''Tut.'' The Senior male shook his head and slowly walked away to the many other kiosks and stalls.
The area was crowded, and sandy, old and overused, there had not been an influx of funds to modernize the market. Regardless of this fact, the locals continued to use the market regularly.
A small ship hovered above the market square. The Senior male and the market stall owner switched their gaze and froze. The ship descended, and several androids made their way down steel steps in succession.
Tall and armed, they were adorned with humanoid physicalities. One of the androids withdrew his proton rifle and shot a local and her child. The other androids followed suit, indiscriminately shooting Mothers, single males, or females, who were casually shopping.
A much larger transporter arrived and landed. Its boarding ladder collapsed, the shooting stopped, and a much larger android marched out. It wore a helmet, which distinguished it from the other mechanical soldiers.
‘‘Ramdonians let your deaths be a message to your leaders, that their disrespect for life has not gone unnoticed and will not go unchecked, and your debt will be repaid,''. The Large android stood out from the other robots and stated.
The Senior male approached the tallest android and began pointing his stick at it.
‘‘Stop, we have seen much death over the years,'' He said presuming it was the leader.
‘‘Well then, you should be used to it by now, '' It reached for one of the other androids Proton blasters and fired at the older civilian.
‘‘Carry out operation 71,'' The Leader ordered his Sargent and handing back his blaster.
The subordinate a slightly shorter android turned to the other soldiers.
'' Corporals, Operation 71 implementation,'' It barked to its fellow androids. The market stall owner watched in a state of shock and horror.
The Androids remained silent, as several Ramdonians held onto each other with fear. The Androids placed their weapons on their sides, and retracted from their backpacks small detonators, and set them on the ground. The choreography of their combined movements was unnerving, it made the locals clench onto each other tightly, then some began to run out of fear.
The corporals carried on with their duties, taking no mind to what was going on around them. The corporals primed their charges, and the detonators bleeped continuously, counting down.
The tallest robot looked around at the natives, running around in a frenzy. The leader showed no remorse for its actions, turned away from
them, and walked up to the steps to its ship.
The Sargent ordered his corps once more.
''Return to the ships.'' It said following the leader. Obediently the androids moved towards their vessels.
The market stall owner awoke from his state of shock, clenched his fists and gritted his teeth. He grabbed a plank of wood from a nearby kiosk and ran towards a ship, hoping to board it or at least attack the Androids. Before he could gain higher ground, he met blaster fire, and his lifeless body fell to the ground.
Then, panic intensified, as some scurried for shelter. Others ran continued to run out of the square. The detonators went off, fires burst out, and flooded the market square.
The leader boarded its ship and looked down at the chaos and set a course for its base, taking the other ships with it aswell.
Two lights years away from Earth, the small cruiser ship the messenger was on autopilot its course, a system called Duriant. The ship's captain, a maverick bounty hunter. G12 was en route to his home planet and drank whiskey whilst in his meditation centre throughout.
''Incoming message Agent G12,'' Belled the ship's computer from its overhead speakers. G12 arose from the bed and steadied himself, walked to the control console of the ship, and pressed the play option. A hologram of his human handler Earl Swift appeared.
''Agent G12, Agent 56 has gone missing whilst on a mission on a system called Ramduan. Your mission is to locate him,'' Swift urged, he was a stout man with a long moustache who looked about sixty.
''How long has he been missing for?'' G12 asked taking another sip of whiskey.
''The last communication we had from him was three weeks ago,'' Swift informed looking at the bottle.
''Consider it done, I'm on my way,'' G12 responded with a modicum of respect.
''Good, you are to liaise with a detective Severign of Vickelli Police at the city centre. It has been attacked by unknown forces, so use some discretion when making your inquiries about agent 56,'' Swift urged.
''Well you know me, I'm always tactful, '' G12 smirked taking another mouthful of whiskey.
''Yes I know that's what I'm worried about...Swift out.'' The old man mentioned, rolling his eyes, and then shaking his head.
G12 usually resented the task of finding a missing person, but Agent 56 was a great warrior and a close friend for many years. G12 was a tad, worried about Agent 56's welfare, it sounded as if Agent 56 needed help.
No one knew what the G12 stood for. It was self-assigned, and in the fifty years of working for the confederation, no one ever questioned it.
G12 was from a race called '' Core Elements'', of which had a life span of over two hundred and fifty years. G12 had lived for over Seventy years, so in relative terms, he was in his prime.
The Core Elements were peculiar looking beings, and G12 was no exception. G12 inspired curiosity wherever he went, he stood at ten feet tall, with light grey skin, fangs, spots, and spikey hair.
He returned to the medical bay and resumed drinking his bottle of whiskey. He reached for the inner pocket of his waistcoat and retracted a small locket. The oval silver trinket opened out flat, and up sprung video footage of two beings of his race. One was a young male and another female. They were his wife and child. G12's family had been dead for over thirty years, but naturally, he still missed them. He drank to subdue the pain, to numb the sense of loss.
A few hours after accepting his mission, he arrived on Ramduan. He left his ship at the nearest docking bay and took a speeder to the market place. A local police officer received him and pointed out Detective Severign. By that stage, any small effects of alcohol were no longer present in his system or appearance.
The area had developed into a crime scene. G12 approached the vicinity watching law enforcement draw outlines to establish evidence areas.
''Are you in charge here?'' G12 asked on approach.
‘‘Yes, you must be Agent G12, I would like to say welcome to Ramduan, but it wouldn't be the best of times for you to visit, to be fair,''. The Ramdoian ran his fingers through his thick long white hair and sighed.
‘‘You're Severign I presume?'' G12 quizzed ignoring the sentiment implied. He eyed up Severign, who was much shorter than him, but he had a build much stronger than what G12 had observed from the other inhabitants.
‘‘Yes, it's been stressful, the locals are fearful that the attackers would return,'' Severign mentioned taking note of the broken buildings, shattered windows and desecrated park benches.
‘‘I'm here to locate a missing Agent, did he report to you?'' G12 enquired holding out a picture of a furry mammal male. He was there to do a job not to be a counselor.
‘‘No, but we have some HD footage at the station. Later I'll show them to you and introduce you to my superiors since we will be working together,'' Severign replied feeling slightly befuddled by the G12's abruptness.
Chapter 2: Fectaron Legislator.
It had traveled for hours across many systems then finally the Android leader, that attacked Ramduan, eventually reached its destination. It had made its way to a major spaceport. The hub was at least a mile long, with various ships interchanging and refueling, including its accompanying Sargents cruiser's.
It stepped out of its ship and walked into a large steel tunnel until eventually being greeted by an android guarding a secured door.
''Sir, you have a telecom message from Senator Whetherton of Ramduan,'' The Android stated.
''Fine, I will receive it in my meeting room.'' The leader commanded.
The walls of the meeting room were lined with holograms of battleships, it had amassed them through years of war. Androids were stationed at every corner of the darkroom. At the far end of the room was a control desk, which governed his intel.
A spectral light came from the control board, and from the light projected a figure of a Ramdoian, who was in smart clothes, and of mature age.
‘‘General your forces attacked Vickelli Square, unprovoked, what was the meaning of this? '' Senator Whetherton said addressing the Android leader.
‘‘I would have thought that was obvious Senator. You have failed to repay the debt on time,''
'' So by killing innocent civilians, you think this will speed up the process?'' Whetherton questioned.
''You needed to be taught a lesson, as it seemed unclear whether or not you understood the terms of our agreement,'' The Android leader reiterated.
'' But do you understand that Ramduan has been through several years of economic decline. Employment has been at an all-time low, that's why we took the debt in the first place,'' The Senator slammed his fists on his desk and took a deep breath.
''Be mindful of your tone, or else there will be repercussions. Your constraints are no concern of mine, you knew there would be penalties if you did not follow the repayment plan,'' The leader followed, it was illogical to emotionally blackmail him.
''But if you destroy our Cities, our industries, kill all of our workers, then how can you expect us to repay you and your employer?'' The Senator insisted.
'' That is your responsibility, Senator. I am not an economist. I will return to Ramduan to instruct another lesson if I do not receive repayment. End transmission.'' The Android leader turned away from the control centre, alarmed at the ignorance of the Senator.