Joining the Nation - Part 5

Silver carefully set the diary down on the table and studied it, considering. His hands unconsciously straightened the silverware as he regarded the worn cover, eyes tracing the marks of time across the binding. A waiter came up, perhaps to see if he needed anything or to politely imply that the restaurant had been closed for 2 hours. Silver tossed a 100isk note on the table without looking up and the man disappeared again. The story, the journal, had finally reached mention of True Slaves - near the end - but it wasn't quite what Silver had expected:

We- it's terrible, unbelievable. They're saying that Mr Kuvakei, that the Nation, that we have done such horrible things. I know none of it is true, it can't be. I'm scared though. They're, they say they're coming, the fleets from the Empires. That they killed them, everyone, the places they have been already. Our fleet, we are evacuating, all of us. Miri and the kids are here with me. It's funny, my second time on a spaceship. I think we've cleared the atmosphere, I'm sure everything will be fine. This is a cruiser, it's huge, we could see it out the window in the transfer shuttle. A Phantasm, Utopia Realized is its name. Surely we are safe now. The crew, they seem a little strange. Quiet, lots of implants. Mostly Minmatar. Helpful though, very helpful...

Several pages had been damaged, then:

...can feel pounding all around us, alarms are going off. I'll write more later, when there is time, I'm going to be with Miri. Ancestors and spirits shelter us.

That had been the last entry. Silver thought back to the database dump from the ship he had destroyed, the first time she was nearly killed, when Utopia Realized was still her name. When what the report said was a dead center hit from the main batteries of an Amarr battleship had ripped clear through the reactor power coupling and the cargo hold. He wondered how the book had even survived.

Silver picked up the thin volume and tucked it into a jacket pocket, then stood and walked from the restaurant to find a transport back to his hangar. By the time he stepped out of the lock and into the corridors he had made his decision. After all, he had wanted a change. Needed a cause that was worth it. Hike Osa's Nation had had nothing to do with True Slaves or grabbing power. It had been about making a life somewhere where happiness was possible. Not to mention where you were born wasn't as important as who you were. Something like that was, well, a better thing to fight for than stuffing some agent's pocket anyway. He made a call,

"Ms Invelen, please contact Asbury and forward to the rest of the ICT directorate my resignation, effective immediately. Inform the crew that per their contracts, they can leave service if they would like, with 6 months severance pay. We are going to be making a bit of a change and it may not agree with everyone. Ami... that goes for you too, of course. If you find our new employer objectionable. Anyway, in the mean time, spool up for a jump and see what you can do to get me in touch with Ms Izzychan of Naqam corporation. I have an offer to make. Thank you, Ami."

Silver felt his doubts fade, felt the same unshakable confidence he had coming out of the academy settle back in. That what he did was right, that the costs, whatever they would be, would be worth it. As he passed through the blast doors to the pod chamber and his ICT uniform crumpled on the floor behind him, he knew certainty.

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