Nowhere to exit- a short story

Photo by Andre Benz on Unsplash

“How you gonna play this?” Carlos’ voice crackled over her earpiece. The system never worked quite as well when in flying space.

“Thought I might play this one by ear,” she smiled, imaging Carlos’ expression as he heard that one. Her hands moed across the touchscreen dials as she brought the ship close to the orbit of the Marshall station. Hektor’s ship was still cloaked, and Hektor himself was still put cold in the loading bay. Thankfully, he was very keen on the host’s free bar so it wasn’t hard to slip him some Crashdust. It made him very open to suggestion as she encouraged him to take her back to his scrapper ship. It also meant he wouldn’t remember how any of this happened. He’d probably be ravenously hungry for the next two days though. Which was a shame, because the Marshall’s didn’t feed their inmates well.

“By ear Chica? I don’t think you really know what that means,” Carlos snorted.

“Don’t you worry yourself Carlos, I’ll be back on board very soon and then we can contact the Galatians,” she informed him. “Keep circling the sky station and be ready.”

“What for?”

“You’ll know it when you see it,” she went over to Hektor’s limp form and dragged him over to the controls. It took a bit of effort to heave him into the seat and strap him in.

“I was worried you were going to say that,” Carlos sighed but said no more. The static disappeared from her ears letting her know he had moved to running dark. This close to the Marshalls, they were already pushing their luck. Turning back to the controls, she dialled in an autopilot, putting it on a direct course for the station. There was no way the Marshall’s would let it crash into their base but it would cause quite a stir.

Looking down at her wrist, she did a quick calculation – six minutes maximum before the Marshall’s would be here, giving her four minutes 45 seconds to be off the ship in time for them to not spot the exit. She paused for a deep breath and oved to another console at the back of the control deck. Her fingers flew across the responsive surface. It allowed her to dig down into Hektor’s systems and all of his files. His security was good but it would never stand to to a full scale attack – or her. She entered the system through a back door, typing code furiously. The screen started flashing red warnings at her. She ignored them and kept going. Four minutes left.

There, in the directories she found all the communications between Hektor and the Galatians. This would be all she needed to backtrace and get into their systems. All the intel she needed would be at her fingertips. She took a transfer drive out of her glove and plugged it in. It took seconds. She erased the logs for access and then corrupted the file so no-one would know she had ever been there. Then, as an added thank you, she left the files wide open for the Marshalls. It would give them enough to keep Hektor for a very long time and it would give them somehting to go at the Galatians with too. After she had of course.

Two minutes thirty left. A high pitched beeping echoed around the control deck. The Marshalls had already seen the scrapper ships approach. They had upgraded their systems. That narrowed her window. No time to get fully kitted out. She grabbed her black bag and made for the bay doors. Knealing beside the large, grey metal shutters she rifled through the bag for what she needed. She pulled out the helmet and the chestplate, that would do. Time to make her exit.

Written in response to Putting My Feet In The Dirt’s February Writing Prompts    URL-


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