More stories! Hooray! As always, comments are welcomed. No seriously, comment please. :<
In the Name of a Better State
I have never worked for capsuleers prior. I suppose that is why I am surprised he entrusted me with so much responsibility, so much of the intimate knowledge. Especially given the fact that I’ve only been employed for less than half a year.
My name is Lieutenant Kahzo Hikainen, and I work for a capsuleer of the alliance Ishuk-Raata Enforcement Directive. I am responsible for managing a hefty array of personnel, and for making sure they perform their duties with the utmost in efficiency. I grew up in…well, never mind that; that is not important right now.
I’ll tell you something though. These capsuleers are a rather strange lot. It’s interesting, really. Some of them seem so normal and blend in easily with the rest of us, and others are just downright insane. It is a spectacle to see the vast spectrum of personalities they encompass. The one I work for…well, let us just say he is a very interesting man.
I will be the first to admit I was pretty nervous when I submitted my application to work for a capsuleer. I served in the Ishukone Watch for almost a dozen years, since I was eighteen, so it only made sense to apply to the Ishuk-Raata Enforcement Directive. Still, despite our mutual mindsets and loyalties, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of apprehension. I guess it was due to all the rumors (or facts?) I’ve heard over the years about capsuleers. Inhuman quasi-robotic beings, mass murderers, insane megalomaniacs, these are just a small handful of the labels surrounding the capsuleer identity.
Anyway I submitted my application, and only a day later I received a response from one “Shosho Korsavius.” I thought it somewhat strange at first. Usually these things take a couple weeks to be fully processed, and for an offer to be sent. At the same time, I felt a bit flattered. If he sent me an offer so quick, obviously I have something of value then, I thought. I booked a flight immediately to the Ishukone headquarters in Malkalen so that the interview process can take place. Whatever rumors prove true about capsuleers, one thing is for sure – the pay and prestige of working for them are high.
I was wearing my Ishukone Watch dress uniform the day of the interview. Waiting in the seating area felt like such a dreadful process. It seemed like hours went by. My anticipation rose, and my hands started to sweat.
“Mr. Hikainen,” said a clerk gently. “Shosho Korsavius will see you now. Please follow me, sir.” I stood and followed the young clerk. She was such a beautiful woman; a strong, rigid Civire face, with platinum blonde hair tied neatly in a bun behind her head.
“Here we are. Are you ready, Mr. Hikainen?”
“Yes. Thank you.”
In all actuality, my heart was racing. I was extremely nervous. Speaking in front of and delivering reports to superior officers was natural and not nerve-wracking at all for me. But this was different. She opened the door, and introduced me.
“Have a seat, Mr. Hikainen.” The voice was not at all what I expected. His voice commanded authority and respect, but also possessed traces of humility. Maybe also a bit of sadness now that I think about it. To be honest, I’m not sure what I was expecting. In any case, his voice disarmed my apprehension rather than strengthening it. I guess it’s why that moment resonates with me till this day.
I bow and take my seat, being sure to address myself properly and professionally; the office itself was dimly lit. “Shosho Korsavius,” I start, “thank you for having me here today. I understand you must be a very busy man. I brought here with me a portfolio –“
“I am already quite aware of your accomplishments, Lieutenant,” he interjects. He serves two cups of tea. He looks at me, “tea?” He starts to slide the cup over before I could even say yes. A few moments of silence pass between us as we both take sips of tea.
“How are you today, Lieutenant? Was your trip here all well?”
“I am doing quite well, Shosho. The trip was uneventful, but peaceful.”
“Ah, quite excellent.” He scans over some reports sitting on his desk, and takes another sip of tea. “I hope you like it. It is a rather new creation that springs from a system where I was raised.”
“Of course! I can’t say that I’ve had tea that tastes both sweet and tangy before. An interesting brew indeed, sir.”
“Lieutenant,” he sets his tea down and proceeds to gaze at me directly, those dark eyes seemingly piercing into my soul, “why do you want to work for the Ishuk-Raata Enforcement Directive? Why do you want to work for me?”
“I…,” I stumble a bit surprised at the serious inquiry following a rather casual interview, “I wish to continue my service with Ishukone by extension of the Ishuk-Raata Enforcement Directive. And I wish to serve the people of the Caldari State, sir.”
He leans back in his chair a bit. A shadow cloaks a portion of his torso and his face. But through the darkness, the nano-tattoo on his face emulates a metallic silver moonlight. I can tell from this that he is still gazing intently at me.
“Very well. Miss Oteshi is going to be debriefing you on the details of your position. I look forward to working with you, Lieutenant.”
And just like that, I was hired.
That moment isn’t really what I wanted to talk about though. No, something happened recently that just seems seared into my memory. What I’m about to tell you is something that happened shortly after the Haatomo incident. An Ishuk-Raata task force conducted a raid on a hidden Provist facility in Lonetrek, and brought back dozens of them. I was one of the officers present in the interrogation room where the Shosho himself would conduct an inquiry.
“Nero Ikeshi, sir.” I guided the man to a seat directly across the steel table to where the Shosho was sitting. I took off his cuffs before he sat, and proceeded to stand at my post beside the entrance to the room.
Almost a minute went by where the room was full of complete silence. The Provist and the Shosho seemed as though they were shooting lightning into each other’s eyes.
“Mr. Ikeshi,” the Shosho finally said, “you have been detained for crimes perpetrated against the authority of the Caldari State, and the people of the Caldari State. Smuggling of illegal weapons, oppressing the workers of the State, laundering corporate scrip, conspiracy to commit murder, murder, accessory to murder…,” the list went on and on it seemed. “Have you anything to explain yourself?”
The Provist remained silent, however. A look of rage engulfed his face. His Civire head looked ugly and contorted with anger. I felt as though he would explode any second, and prepared my firearm should he try anything against the Shosho.
A few more moments of silence filled the room. Finally, the Shosho took a teacup and poured a serving. He slid it over to the angry man, and silence again grasped the room.
Out of nowhere, the man finally erupted. “Jaijii
! Disgusting traitorous filth! You will get yours one day, you can count on it!” With that, the man quickly downed the cup of tea and awaited his prompt and honorable death. Or so he thought.
After a couple minutes of silent waiting the man finally asked, “What the hell kind of hak’len is this?” The Shosho, with a face of unmoving expression the entire time, simply responded “It is not hak’len. It is simply a drink to quench your thirst, should you have any.”
This enraged the Provist beyond words. He threw the teacup against the wall and spit on the Shosho’s face. The other Ishuk-Raata officer and myself both made approaches to the man, but a hand gesture from the Shosho told us to stand down. The Shosho pulled out a handkerchief, and wiped the spit off his face.
“As you seem so willing to get straight down to business, then you shall receive your wish. I sentence you to death by firing squad for your crimes against the authorities and people of the Caldari State. Please follow Lieutenant Shirozen to face your sentence.” The Provist immediately had a look of fear and horror on his face. The Shosho continued.
“May the Ancestors have mercy –“
“This is unjust! I am a citizen of the Caldari State you disgusting scumbag bastard! I deserve an honorable trial, or at least a real Teamaker ceremony!” Panic quickly grasped the Provist and both the other officer and myself restrained him.
The Shosho paused, hands folded over each other on the table. “May the Ancestors have mercy on your spirit. You are dismissed, Mr. Ikeshi.” With that, two marines entered the interrogation room and hauled the Provist out to meet his fate. The Shosho looked over to me, and could see I was a bit ruffled by the emotional outburst.
“Are you alright, Lieutenant?”
“Yes, Shosho,” I responded. “We do this in the name of a better State.” He nodded with approval. It was a phrase he told me just before we started the interrogation of the captured Provists. I cleaned up the broken teacup, and marines brought in the second Provist of the group to be interrogated.