Alien General's Bride (Brion Brides)(5)By: Vi Voxley
The implantation was said to be more torture than reward. They were electronic, for the lack of a better word, connected directly into the warriors’ nervous systems, reacting to their mood. Besides being really bright and clear to see, in battle they sent out pulses of light and sound to attract enemies who reacted to that. They were signs of ranks, testament to strength (and brutality) and a challenge to their enemies all rolled into one. It was the Brion way: they invited the attention of their enemies, showing they had no fear of them.
What a horrible way to live, Isolde thought, to invite death so loudly.
She was ripped out of her musings by yet another Brion gritting his teeth. Agent Perkins was looking smug. Isolde wondered if he was enjoying this as much as she thought. In physical combat, he would be stomped to pieces by these guys, but in this he could make them do what he wanted.
For her part, Isolde remained quiet. She had no intention of further creating a scene and besides, she really didn’t want to risk angering a Brion, and as much as the stories could be believed, Brions needed very little to take offense.
The new Brion was looking at her now. Isolde straightened up and stared back. With wild animals, you must not show fear. They wouldn’t take her as a threat anyway, so she was safe in that regard. Less safe from the intense stare the Brion was giving her. Finally, he turned away and addressed agent Perkins again. “I must speak to my commanding officer,” he said.
Oh, come on.
There was a caricature she remembered. “There is always a bigger fish”, it was called. She was reminded of that, which was to remain her last coherent thought for the day, because the Brion tapped a device on his shoulder and spoke the following words, “Commander Grothan, we have a situation that requires your presence.”
It sounded like he was signing his own death warrant, as much as Isolde could tell. More from the words than his tone, really. Her head snapped to agent Perkins so fast she thought she broke something and saw his mouth drop open too. Having much more experience, eloquence, and training, he beat her by half a second to, “Fuck...”
While Isolde was still trying to piece together what was left of her sanity, agent Perkins continued with the tactical analysis.
“Fuck, fuck, fuck...” he murmured. “I am sorry, Miss Fenner. I seem to have killed us both.”
They had both switched to English. First of all, because it made swearing easier, and second of all, because they could hope the Brions didn’t understand a fairly unimportant language like that, only spoken on one planet.
“You didn’t know?” Isolde hissed at the agent. “Tell me right now you didn’t know that the Brion ship you were trying to get me on was the bloody Triumphant?”
“It is not here,” the agent whispered back frantically. “It could not dock at such a small station, the sheer mass of it would pull Luna Secunda out of orbit. The ship docked here is called the Forger. But if the great Go’Ran is not merciful and there are not two Commander Grothans,“ – the Brions snapped to wary attention at the mention of the name – “then it’s the Triumphant’s cruiser and if that ship is here, then yes, he must not be far either. I didn’t know, I never imagined...”
“Then you’re saying there is a good possibility you just summoned the bloodiest of Brion generals and the main reason why the species was denied membership into the GU for so long to fucking give me a ride,” Isolde sputtered.
“It would seem so,” agent Perkins said, and although Isolde could very well see the sweat beading on his brows, she had to once again admire the man’s courage. There were many warriors in the galaxy, men and women of great strength, who didn’t consider it a shame to run from that name alone.