Mr. Mason and the Carions, Information, Part 4
The following links are to Part 1 - 3, if you have not read them please do. Give them a heart, make a comment, and share them with folks you know. Thanks.
Deep Space Colony Systems are a collection of 12 space Orbs that orbit a massive central Orb. They are indeed a wondrous sight to see. The orbs are not small. A DSCS is home to 50,000 Taosans who live in luxury. The artificial Solar System is surrounded by ten thousand autonomous satellites programmed to do specific tasks that are necessary and designed to ensure the stability and survivability of the Colony. The Massive Central Station is a self-contained Nuclear reactor. Through the incredibly advanced technology of The Grand Taosan Galactic Empire, it mimics a sun. However, it is more efficient than a sun as one hundred percent of the energy produced is used and directed in intricate ways. I was docked on DSCS-5’s 3rd Orb, the Detention Center was on the 5th Orb. I decided to fly the Adventure-1 to the 5th Orb for my meeting with Josiphus. I could have used the transporter network, but I don’t like being dematerialized. Anyway, I docked and followed the instructions to get to the detention center. I signed in and sat in the waiting room. About half an hour later, after identity verification and receipt of authorization to see the prisoner, a guard entered the waiting room.
“Follow me, please.”
I stood and followed the Guard through the door. We turned left down a hall to a door on the right side of the corridor. The Guard opened it, stepped inside, and held it open for me. I entered the Visitation Suite of the DSCS-5 Detention Center. The room was austere, decorated in a minimalist style, the furnishings comfortable but straightforward. The walls were white with a barely detectable hint of green that was accented by Cyan-colored carpeting. The seating was sky blue, and the tables white. Art by artists unknown to me decorated the walls. A small kitchenette had brewed coffee, non-alcoholic drinks, assorted snacks, and a chilled vegetable and fruit platter. I poured a cup of coffee and chose a lemon-filled danish and some fresh fruit, then sat at one of the tables. The Guard who had escorted me in came over and spoke.
“Mr. Mason, We will bring your attacker, Mr. Wander, in momentarily. He is unrestrained, but you have no need to worry. He is chipped. The device moderates his hormonal balance and monitors his brain waves. The system is 98.5% effective in detecting factors that lead to violence and mischief of any kind. If any of those factors occur, the prisoner is stunned with a sedative, and I am alerted. I will be in the room just over there.” The Guard pointed to a spot in the room near a door opposite the door I entered through.
“What if I decide to attack him,” I asked?
“His chip will detect the change in physical and hormonal conditions and alert me at which time I will activate the prisoner’s protective shield. If you have hands-on him at the moment of activation, it will cause you injury. I will then detain you for judgment by the Prime,” The Guard responded.
“OK then, I will refrain from assaulting the man who tried to kill me.”
“That would be the most Taosan thing to do,” The Guard said. He then went and stood in his spot.
I sipped my coffee and snacked on the danish facing the Prisoners entrance.
After a bit of waiting, the door opened, and another guard escorted Josiphus Wander in.
He looked and saw me. “Timothy, thank goodness you are OK,” he said as he walked toward me smiling, a tear-streaked down his cheek.
“What the hell, Josiphus,” I said as I stood and moved toward him. Damned if we didn’t hug. As I received the hug from the man who tried to kill me, a man I held in high regard and considered a brother, relief filled me. Then I slugged him. Well kneed in the groin first, then a slug that caused him to fall to the ground. I looked up at the Guard, put my hands in the air, and backed away.
Josiphus, curled up in a ball grasping his groin, raised his hand to the Guard. “I’m good, sir. I deserved that. We are good.” He rolled over, coming to his hands and knees looking at the Guard, his behind facing me. I looked at him, perfectly positioned for a swift kick. Then I looked at the Guard. He was looking at me. He held a device in his hand, he shook his head. I backed up further and refrained. Josiphus stood, turned, faced me, and laughed. “Dang, that barely tickled Mason, you going soft on me?”
I laughed. “Get some coffee or something. Come join me.” I sat back down at the table and took a sip of coffee and a bite of danish.
He brought a plate of vegetables, fruit, and water over to the table. He popped a carrot in his mouth and leaned back a bit in his chair, looking at me. As he chewed, he wiped his eyes with a napkin. “Dang, chip messes with my body chemistry. I am all emotional about everything except, I can’t get angry.”
“Serves you right, asshole,” I said.
He smiled, “I don’t even know how to explain.”
“I’ve seen the court record, so skip to how you thought killing me instead of recruiting me to help was the best idea.”
“Well, you were with that beautiful young lady, and you did walk by and not even notice I was standing at the bar. You hurt my feelings you did,” Josiphus said. He took a bite of a Perisan Banana.
I sat silently staring at him for a moment. Then Josiphus shook his head and began to chuckle.
“I’ve gotten myself into quite a mess here, Mason, and I need you to help me out,” he said.
“Not a very good apology or explanation, so, no,” I said, standing up.
“Wait, wait, it is difficult to explain. I couldn’t figure another way. I thought they were watching me and that if I tried to talk to you, they would kill the Princess.”
“A bit closer to an explanation but still not very clear,” I said, pushing the chair in and stepping back from the table.
“Mason, I’m desperate. I need you to find the Princess and return her to Bracus-5. I will transfer my status as Benefactor of Bracus-5 to you if you help me. Please.”
“You should do that anyway, just as payback for killing me. I do love Bracus-5,” I said.
He just stared.
“That’s right ass, the only reason I’m standing here right now is that we were on DSCS-5, and they were able to get me medical care right away.”
He started crying. “This flipping chip, God.” wiping his eyes.
“So, why me, Josiphus? What are you going to be doing while I risk my life to rescue a princess I’ve never met?”
“Um, sitting around in the Detention Center till they transfer me to the Prison system on Gelk, Duh.”
“Right, there is that now, isn’t there. So, if I were to help, how do you suppose we get me, the Gleb, and the Princess together,” I asked?
We sat for a long while discussing various options. Josiphus then gave me access to the file he put together on the Carions and his Gleb attacker. We discussed Gatlis Reil and the Gleb that had taken the Princess. The audio, when compared, led us to believe there were two Glebs involved. I didn’t bother to tell him I asked for his release. First, because I wasn’t sure they would actually do it, and 2nd he deserved to sit and stress a bit about the prospects of life in prison. Just saying.
I flew back to the 3rd Orb docked and went to the Bracus Lord. I did several things while there. I retrieved the file, hid all his handheld weapons, underwear from his cabin, and took a Taosan Topshelf Brandy bottle from his pantry. Then I sent a message that I had him make at the detention center to his Gleb.
“To the Gleb Bastard who is holding Princess Chelise. I could not kill Timothy Mason, but I have convinced him to meet me at Bracus-5. Bring the Princess, and I will exchange Mason for her, and we can be done with this.”
I then programmed the communications system to relay all communications to The Adventurer-1. Then I programmed his ship to fly un-crewed to the designated rendezvous location. I included three life sign Mimics so the Carions would believe a crew was aboard.
I got back to my ship and waited to hear if they were going to release Josiphus. While waiting, I reviewed the file, which contained everything from the expedition logs, video, audio, and inputs from the crew and the expedition members.
This is what I learned.
_____________________________To Be Continued__________________________________
Please be sure to enjoy the other Mr. Mason, Adventures in The Grand Taosan Galactic Empire, here on this site. Here is the link . https://www.tmarkmangum.com/mr-mason-and-the-gtge
Copyright: T. Mark Mangum, 2020. All rights reserved. No part of my story may be copied, reprinted, or published without my written consent.
T. Mark Mangum, is the product of the 60s and 70s, his imagination, wonder, thoughts, and ponderings, emboldened by Star Trek, Star Wars, Conan the Barbarian, and The Hobbit. He loves a good story and hopes you will love reading his stories. Veteran, Father, TTRPG, and Board Game Junkie. He spent 20 years in the United States Army, another 10 working for the government, before realizing he should write.