In Version; Chapter 103, Beam 186

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Stories from the Verse
In Version
Chapter 103:  Beam 186
Table of Contents
Previous chapter:  Slade 239

Emperor, what are your commands? Lieutenant Commander Malacon said, and Bob translated.  Lors looked at him, and so did the other thirty little green men in the room.  His mind wandering, he noted that Lors at four and a quarter feet tall was the tallest of them, but all of his people, even Dawn, were taller.  In there was some seed of an idea.

“My lord husband, your second wife would like to speak to you in private.” Sophia said.  He looked at her.  She was being unusually polite, and standing up for Ashleigh, the frequently detested Wife Number Two (or was it Three?).  What was she after?

“Bob,” he said.  And his alien moved its multiple limbs which caused a stir in the room of unease.  His crew knew that they danced on a knife’s edge, and if they wanted to stay alive in this universe, it would be helpful to hint of deep, dark things.  At the same time, they wanted to gain loyalty.

I speak for Ashleigh.  She offers to surreptitiously assassinate Norax.  She can do it by herself, and return with the head.  Or she can take you and this one, and have you broadcast with this one from his chambers.  Then I can eat his brain.  You will look strong and terrifying.

He looked over at Ashleigh, and she nodded gravely.  His sweet little wife was all eager to go and cut someone’s head off, probably with whatever those energy pikes were since she did not have a knife.  He blew her a kiss.  But this gave him a better idea.  Ultimately, this would be a war of public relations.  Sure, they could wade through bodies, and fill hallways with inches of blood, but not only would such be unpleasant, it would also likely get him killed.  If they could do it without a life-or-death mission, so much the better.

Beam turned to Malacon.  “Can you get me contact, video contact, with the whole of the ship?”

I’m sorry, Emperor.  I can connect you to my floor, and to the floors above and below, but there are fifty floors.  I would have to have higher rank to get access to the all ship’s comms.

“Well,” Beam cracked his knuckles, “I think we can see if I can pull out some old tricks.  Show me your video console, Lt. Commander.  Log me in, and I will take it from there.”

Next to the general conference room was a video room.  Malacon activated the computer system, used his rank designator to activate the messaging, and chose video all call for floors twenty-seven, twenty-eight, and twenty-nine.  He then gave his chair to Beam.  Beam looked at the small chair and pushed it aside.  He could type standing up.

Thirty minutes later, Ashleigh spoke in his ear.

“One of Malacon’s men tried to cut the power to this level.  I dealt with him.”

He shivered slightly, and thought Bob.

Norax turned one of Malacon’s men with bribes.  Tasty.

For a second, Beam was very glad that Ashleigh and Bob were on his side.  With Dawn trailing him, he walked out into a more general room beyond Malacon’s office, and checked up on what Bron and Sophia were doing.  She was entertaining a crowd with her fire magic, and he was arm wrestling five little green men at a time in front of another crowd.  He decided both were trying to make good impressions of friendly and powerful at the same time.  He returned to the video room and plunged deeper into hacking.  After some time, he stood fully back up, cracking his fingers absently.  He felt almost certain that his latest ploy had succeeded.

Video Message Shipwide All Call Activated.  Begin message at your convenience, Admiral.

The message hung in the air above a holovid projection table.  It had worked.  Whatever he said would be sent out to flatscreens ship wide.  Now what was he going to say that would keep the Seeker from war, and place him undisputedly on the Throne?  Like in that underground tech world, he was not eager to be Emperor--but it was better than the alternative of being executed for crimes against the Imperium.

Now, how to begin?

Wait, there was another problem.  Bob, get the whole team in here.

Next chapter:  Chapter 104:  Brown 271
Table of Contents

There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with eleven other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #493:  Verser Engagements.  Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter.  It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.

As to the old stories that have long been here:

Verse Three, Chapter One:  The First Multiverser Novel

Old Verses New

For Better or Verse

Spy Verses

Garden of Versers

Versers Versus Versers

Re Verse All

In Verse Proportion

Con Verse Lea
Stories from the Verse Main Page

The Original Introduction to Stories from the Verse

Read the Stories

The Online Games

Books by the Author

Go to Other Links

M. J. Young Net

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