Mundus Novus: Fine Print Part 1
The space station welcomed them in with mostly warm regards once they discovered that three ARC members were on board although Mai had suggested that the friendliness was forced. Thi ignored her. She was always a bit paranoid in that way.
He left the ship first, Elk trotting closely behind him, and shook hands with the dock overseer as he greeted them. They chatted about paperwork and basic procedure before he gave Elk a signal that meant that she was free to get her crew and look around as well as make repairs.
She wasn’t a huge fan of following orders from a man-boy she didn’t really know but she understood that in this station he was more or less king. He was untouchable and she was little more than a petty criminal. Luckily (although perhaps it had nothing to do with luck,) she was smart enough to keep out of trouble. The last thing she needed right now was more trouble, especially after what had happened with her two friends.
The space station, she noticed, was so inherently human. She had yet to see any other species onboard. Sure, she was still in their docking bay, a docking bay that was kept orderly by the U.R.E, but it surprised her slightly to see a complete lack of any other species. Even their lowly workers were human. Miserable, but completely human.
She shook her head and tried not to think of it too much. She had already come to the conclusion long ago that the U.R.E gave humans a bad name. She really shouldn’t have been so surprised.
“I’m going to look around.” Elk said, “Unless you need me for something?”
Thi shook his head, “No, the mechanics here can fix our ship up. We’ll be here for another hour or so.”
“Ezra’s not going to like that.” She stated plainly, slightly annoyed at the way Thi had said “our ship” as if it was part of his but she kept that to herself. She was also not a big fan of any outsiders poking around at their ship but she was too tired to argue right now. Especially after the way the interrogation with their guest went. An interrogation she had no plans on thinking about right now.
In truth, all she wanted was a nice meal and a nap. The latter she probably wouldn’t be able to accomplish due to the uneasiness about sleeping in a U.R.E controlled station but the first one…well she planned on taking care of that right now.
They had taken over the ship. Ezra realized. Men and women she didn’t know or recognized entered the ship to make their own repairs without consulting her first. It annoyed her more than anything that they would just step all over this place. It wasn’t a U.R.E ship and just because they had a few members on board didn’t mean they had the right to go ahead and mark their scent everywhere.
It bothered her. Their whole damned superiority complex bothered her and she couldn’t help but glare as someone tapped on a terminal.
It wasn’t like one of their ships. It wasn’t built to code or regulation. It was ragtag. They didn’t have the best supplies. They had to make due with stolen parts and whatever they could find and she had this strange feeling that they were judging her. Judging her, even though she could out fly, out gun, and out everything their stupid first class fighters can do.
She wasn’t the only one uncomfortable with this. She knew. And she was actually surprised Elk even allowed this to happen but they’d been in similar situations like this before. Situations in which they had to dock and let people inspect their home. Maybe it was best not to argue. They weren’t going to do anything to them and they weren’t actually inspecting them. They were just helping them put parts into place.
It didn’t make her feel any less annoyed though.
She sighed. They weren’t all that bad. They took care of Alex, took her into a proper hospital for a quick check up and didn’t ask any questions. They didn’t go into any rooms they didn’t need to and they actually were helping. She just wished it could have been a little less intrusive.
She shook her head. No, no point in arguing when nothing would come of it. The best she could do was oversee and make sure that everything went well and that they didn’t do things like bug her ship.
Azeline felt much better. She actually hadn’t been that bad off but on the insistence of Mai, did in fact, rest for a few minutes before landing, missing the entire interrogation debacle. When asked if she wanted to be looked over at the clinic she declined and was surprised to find Mai letting it go that easily but then again she didn’t have her arm cut off.
Mads was with Alex at the moment, waiting with the girl and making sure that no funny business was happening in the clinic as Azeline watched the man who held a pipe to her throat.
A few people offered to take her place but Azeline wanted to see him, wanted to talk to him, just to know a little more than the interrogation told them.
He was sitting now, in a chair, but no longer tied up. The room still prevented his escape and her gun was another precaution he was eying.
“Sorry.” He said gruffly, refusing to look at her.
She nodded, not quite sure how to respond to that. “It’s alright” wouldn’t suffice because it wasn’t alright. He attacked her and she was still questioning why he was still here.
Mark had petitioned for Edgar’s stay. Mark had been the one to tell them that it wasn’t okay to just “dump him” somewhere. Especially after the interrogation.
It was Mark who had the most sympathy for Edgar and the answers he gave.
Elk still wanted to throw him overboard and Thi still wanted to hand him in.
Mark was the one who said no and for some reason, some reason that only those of them who were in the interrogation debacle plus Thi knew, they allowed it.
Azeline was leaning against the wall and Edgar looked positively bored with his current situation. Bored and frustrated.
“You know if you just let me go I’ll be out of your way.” The male stated simply. He had said this statement before to several others.
Azeline just shook her head. “Can’t.”
“I don’t know, I just can’t.”
“You don’t know why do you?”
She just glared and he knew he had struck gold.
“Why do you listen to them?”
“That’s not going to work you know.”
There was a beat of silence.
“I trust them.” She said suddenly.
“That’s a stupid reason.”
“They’re my friends.”
“So – they’ll tell me later. I was put under bed rest and I didn’t get a chance to hear the full story.” She was accusing him. That much was very clear and he caught on.
“Right.” He stated, and then, after another beat “Sorry.”
“You said that already.”
He shrugged and they fell silent again.
Mads was frustrated. Very much frustrated by the fact that her friend was being poked and prodded with instruments and tools and she couldn’t do anything to help. They told her she’d get in the way and she threw them a look and they promptly shut up and hurried onwards back to what they were doing.
Despite the look she shot them, she left the room knowing that she would, in fact, get in the way. Even if she didn’t want to admit it.
If she really thought about it, her frustration was worry, worry that her friend wasn’t alright, worried fucking arm, and worried about the fact that she didn’t know enough to help and that maybe they should have spent more time working on first aid than fixing engines. Although the second part was important too. But until she had the time to mull it over she was just going to stick with frustrated.
Very. Fucking. Frustrated.
She couldn’t forget that bit either.
Mads had no idea what the doctors were doing to their friend. She had only half listened to their medical jargon, not because she didn’t know what they were saying (she didn’t) or because she wasn’t interested (she was) but because things were happening too fast, too quickly, and she couldn’t keep up.
She was so tired.
Tired enough not to put a fight when the doctors ushered her out the room and sat her in the waiting room to, well, wait.
She didn’t know how long it was until a familiar one popped her head out and told her that Alex could return to the ship and then proceeded to give Mads instructions on what to watch out for for the next few months.
Apparently Mai had done well. The cut was clean, despite the circumstances, and everything was good to go. The only difference was that the doctors added something Mads never thought they would.
Alex had an arm again.
A robotic, mechanical arm, that was still, according to the doctors, a prototype but it worked and for that Mads was glad.
It wasn’t the same but it was certainly cool and Alex was coping with it just fine.
If the day hadn’t been so long and grueling, Mads might have been in a good enough mood to make a joke about how she wanted to cut her own arm off if it meant replacing it with a cybernetic one.
Protocol was not something Mai was inherently fond of but it was definitely something she wouldn’t mess with. It was not her place and she would have been too afraid to break rank anyway. She wasn’t really as rash as she pretended to be – not at all, and that was the reason why she went into medicine.
She just couldn’t make the decisions someone like Thi (and Mark) would (not that those two boys weren’t goody goody two shoes themselves)
She was a slightly bad influence but only because she wouldn’t have the guts to do it herself. She was afraid of the consequences and not as rash as the Espoinage crew and for that reason, she was both comforted and anxiety ridden by her new companions.
So when she made that decision to cut off Alex’s arm, she knew that she alone was responsible for the call she made.
She was the one who cut Alex. She was the one who didn’t bother to look for another route.
She was the one who did it.
And she felt bad every time she looked at the blonde girl.
Mai needed to fix it, if only to ease her guilt a little more.
She told the doctors to install something they had never thought was possible. She showed them the schematics they held back at the ARC that could be pulled up on the terminals at the station and she gave them clearance (not that she really had it) to start the procedure.
She gave Alex her arm back but she didn’t realize that this meant that she was now bound to the girl by rules, laws, procedures and protocol.
She should have read the fine print.
And Lt. David Carlton told her so as Eevee connected them for a much needed conversation.