Indy exhaled a quiet breath as she closed the door behind Janet and Alex, motioning them into the chairs across from her desk. “I apologize for leaving you in the dark,” she said to Skyy as she made her way around her desk and slid into the seat behind it. “You were dealing with a lot and I figured that our tactical situation could wait a little longer. After all, it’s not like the fighting was here.”
The look that her Skyy shot her was half grateful and half wary. “I appreciate that, but the way you’re talking now makes me think that perhaps I’m not going to like what you’re about to tell me.”
Hul Matuul’a knelt beside the fallen, unconscious shaper and drew his coufee. Unlike the fallen warriors around her, this one had not elected to suicide when the infidel gas began to fill their compartment. Instead, she had succumbed to it, and fell with her face pointed towards the armory which had been her charge, and a certain set of chemical reagents and triggers in her hands. Admittedly, it would have gone ill for his plan had she actually reached the armory and carried through with her intentions, but with communications down and an obvious boarding about to take place, she likely felt there was little choice
“I would have done the same,” the shipmaster whispered as he slit her throat. “There is no shame in what you tried to do, daughter of Yun Ne’Shel. Nor shame in failure. But I will not allow you to be captured, so go to the gods in honor.”
Behind him, and all over the ship, his few remaining warriors did likewise for those few who had not opened their own throats or bellies when the gas overtook them.
“Sir, we’ve the final report from the SAR teams.”
Carlos closed his eyes and let out a breath, leaning over the tactical board in the Illuminator’s flag bridge. A steady buzz of activity filled the air, though those nearest to him fell quiet, and stood by to hear.
“How bad, Aral?”