“Wow, that’s impressive. Is that projection illustrating the DMD’s progress?” Marr said as she entered the crew mess.
“Yes, Bazzer was just explaining it to me.”
“Explaining what?” asked Annee as she appeared in the doorway from the guest accommodation.
“The DMD Dance?” Mentor offered on seeing what was the focus of their attention.
“Exactly,” Luna responded.
“Food is nearly ready. Two minutes,” Dukk said from the kitchenette doorway.
Whilst they freshened up, Dukk headed over to the console and did a quick scan of the system logs.
Moments later they were all at the table. Bazzer had turned off the flight plan projection as Dukk served the meals.
“Who wants to give thanks?” Dukk said looking around the table.
“Go for it cap, you deserve it,” Annee suggested kindly.
Dukk nodded, then lifted his head and pulled his shoulders back.
“I express gratitude for all that was, is and yet to be. May Mentor, Marr and Luna find what they seek in our company and may we all serve our purposes well. Focus on that which is real in the heart. Create the space so that the process can emerge. Honour that which serves you well. Engage in the journey as it unfolds. Thanks, I give.”
“Thanks, I give,” they all replied.
Bazzer and Annee looked over at Dukk with interested expressions. Marr had a blank confused expression. Luna looked over with delight. Dukk looked stunned. Mentor tried badly to hide his smile.
“What was that last bit. The ‘Focus on what is real in the heart’ and all that?” Annee asked.
“The creed,” blurted Luna without thinking.
“The creed? No, umm. What creed? No, I don’t know of any creed. The sentences just came to me. It felt like something that I knew and should share in this company,” Dukk answered.
“The creed was something that was once spoken to young children in the incubation centres. I thought it had been banned. Clearly some nannies are still doing it. Strange that it only came to you just now, Dukk. You know of it too, Luna?” said Mentor.
They all looked around. First at Mentor and then at Luna.
“Yes, Mentor, that is what I’ve heard too,” Luna answered confidently doing her best to make up for her mistake.
“Let’s eat,” said Dukk, who was feeling a little embarrassed. He didn’t feel it was the time to explore the subject any further.
There were no objections. Everyone was hungry.
Before long, Dukk’s odd behaviour was forgotten. The conversation turned to the launch and arrival into orbit.
When everyone was done eating, Marr jumped up and started to clear the trays.
Annee sat back in her chair and stretched her arms out in front of her. Seeing her bracelet she blurted out, “What is the purpose of this bracelet? They look typical, however when I put my hand like this, it starts glowing green. That doesn’t normally happen?”
There was a moment of silence. Dukk looked at Annee, and then the new crew.
“It is no big deal. Look,” Bazzer said as he pulled up his sleeve. He waved his hand over a bulky and warn bracelet that he was never without. There was instantly a faint green glow.
The others turned towards Bazzer, looking perplexed. Especially Dukk.
Then Mentor waved his hand over his bracelet. Marr and Luna followed. Dukk figured he do the same.
With all the bracelets showing a faint green glow, Bazzer continued.
“They are anti-snooping devices. They are tuned into your implants. When they are active they will cloak any conversation from being recorded or listened to live. In the Citadel you need to cover your mouth to prevent lip reading, but in this crew mess where there are no cameras, you can talk freely once it glows green.”
Dukk tilted his head sideways and looked at Bazzer.
“You knew when I shared the story on the flight from Kuedia,” Dukk thought to himself.
Bazzer smiled as if he could read Dukk’s mind.
“When you have been around as long as I have, you accumulate a few tricks, you see what isn’t been said and little goes unnoticed,” Bazzer said out loud but clearly directed at Dukk.
“They are usually worn by thugs and undesirables to get the upper hand or swing things in one’s favour, which sums me up,” Bazzer chuckled.
“And is that what you three are?” Annee asked abruptly looking at Mentor, Luna and Marr.
Dukk sat back in his seat. He was thinking the same, but glad it was Annee who had the courage to ask the obvious.
“I can only speak for myself. Wallace likes to play outside the rules. He insists those in his favour use them. That sums me up,” Mentor answered sincerely.
“That is pretty much as it is for me too,” answered Marr swiftly, taking the hint from Mentor’s response.
“Yep, me too,” Luna was quick to add.
Annee didn’t look convinced. Dukk wanted to believe them. But he wasn’t there yet.
No one spoke. Annee looked slowly from Mentor, to Luna and Marr.
“Well this has been fun. I’m going to press some iron before hitting the hay. See you here just before two AM, Luna,” said Bazzer as he stood up.
The comment broke the tension. There was a collective sigh.
Mentor, Luna and Marr moved off.
Annee looked at Dukk.
“Breathe,” he mouthed back.
She sat back and nodded. After a moment she too got up and made for her cabin.
(to be continued...)
[Rule of Twelve, Double Take, Chapter 11 - Orbit (Passage 3 of 5)]
All Rights Reserved. Copyright © 2021 BJ Allen
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Chapter 1 - A routine descent
Chapter 2 - Perspective
Chapter 3 - Grounding
Chapter 4 - Cause and effect
Chapter 5 - The first meeting
Chapter 6 - Staying goodbye
Chapter 7- Instability
Chapter 8 - Orientation
Rule of Twelve, Double Take - Ch15 (Passage 5/5)
“Hi,” came Luna’s voice as she bounced into the suit locker.
Dukk turned around.
“Are you alright? You are all flushed?”
“Yes, I am fine. I was practicing some yoga in zero-G. I lost track of time. Quite challenging and not what I expected.” Luna replied.
“Yoga?” Marr mouthed silently at Luna from behind Dukk.
Luna smiled cheekily.
Marr held her hands up and looked away as if to say ‘I don't want to know’.
Dukk laughed. He’d been an apprentice too once. He knew what was on his mind the first time he was in zero-g. And, he could tell an intentional lie.
“Are you sure you want to try this now? I can go alone and you can get back to your ‘yoga’?” Dukk asked in gest emphasising the last word.
“Nope, I’m good. Let’s do this.”
Thirty five minutes later, Luna stood at the port outer doorway. She was in awe.
Dukk and Luna had completed the same process Bazzer and Marr had done earlier. Marr, with ...
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