((OOC: Doing some sliiight fudging with Eru's finale, but I think y'all will appreciate the direction it takes :))
((U.S.S. Arrow, Cargo Bay 1.))
Wilde: Captain Shayne will defend this ship to the last man if we have to. Time to end this, Ghant!
Ghant: It matters little. I do not need that much time to kill you.
There was nothing sustaining Eru Ghant anymore. Nothing but rage and pain. The bulkhead cap that had collided with her not but minutes earlier had done more damage than she had previously noticed. As she had gotten to her feet again, white-hot pain shot throughout the side impacted. More than that, it felt like something was shifting inside of her. She had suffered her fair swallow of internal injuries to know what they felt like.
But that did not matter. All that mattered was her hands. And The Pretty One's neck. Despite the pain she sprang forward, sending them both crashing to the ground in a pile of skin and fists. They struggled momentarily but were separated violently by a sudden sharp kick from the Pretty One. More pain exploded throughout her chest and belly, but she pushed it from her mind and into intangibility. That was the kind of thing one could do once they stopped caring if they lived or died.
The Pretty One then further surprised her. Producing a honed, but tarnished Reman blade. Laughter boomed from her wheezing and screaming frame. At least now he finally understood the truth of the matter. And was starting to act accordingly. She sprang again, leaping like a lepreious toward the blade. Again they tousled and turned. Eru wondered if to the outside eye it might have looked like they were locked in passion's embrace. But this was even more pure than passion. This was her world. And now she would show this whelp the cost of playing in her world and thinking himself the able player.
After a quick turn and fanned flat palm, Eru liberated the blade from the Pretty One's hand and instantly clamped her thighs around his midsection with a constant pressure. He was not about to wriggle away this time. She hissed in triumph as his terrified face looked up at her. She imagined this had to have been what gods felt like. Dancing life on the edge of a blade by their whims and whims alone.
Despite her pain, Eru Ghant glowed in triumph. She bore her shining eyes into his.
Ghant: I will remember you, Regan Wilde...
She raised the blade high above her head.
Ghant: Hush, now. It will be over soon, Pretty.
Movement caught her eye in front of her. She swept her eyes up and saw...the biggest Magna Roman she had ever seen. And That ALVAREZ AGAIN! Standing side-by-side. The Magna Roman leveled a phaser at her. There was barely a moment between her clocking the weapon and him firing it.
The shot hit her square in the chest, burning and tossing her back deeper into the hold. But thankfully she kept ahold of the blade. She scrambled back to her feet and saw her attackers still standing at the far end of the Bay. Alvarez, however, was within arm's reach. Ghant would make use of it.
Alvarez: You're right, you know.
Ghant: Am I now?
She cautiously stepped forward.
Alvarez: We are alike aren't we? Two people that gave everything away to a whole other life. Our hearts, our souls, our bodies. Two people stripped down to nothing. The difference is what you found at your core was hate and cynicism. What a dark world you must live in - where you refuse to see the mind-boggling beauty and complexity right in front of us every day. Where we're different is you've decided to destroy everything around you, no matter how precious. Riches and infamy mean nothing if you've lost yourself. I believe in something more than that. That's who I am. Call me an idealist, but it's true. Starfleet is definitely imperfect, but at their heart they believe there's something more too. Can you say the same?
Ghant: I can say my enemies are dead, while I still remain. That is ENOUGH!
She slashed wildly with the blade, cutting it through the air in a wide, but sloppy arc. Alvarez pivoted quickly and then feinted faster still as Eru continued to slash and stab at the space around them. But it was the intentionality again of the movement that kept her eye. It was...a courtesan dance. She was MOCKING her. Rage bubbled again through her mind and heart.
Alvarez: You were wrong about something else, though. This is a dance. I can't believe I didn't notice earlier with your reverence... you prefer the late 22nd century style courtly dances, don't you? That hasn't been in fashion for a while. Amazing you've held onto it despite having fought your way out.
Ghant: I am grateful for your appreciation. I will wear it again for your wake.
She continued to evade her and Eru continued to spiral further and further into her bloodlust. More and more wild slashes darted from her hands. But STILL she twirled just outside of Eru's reach. Blood pounded in her ears. Drowning out the sound of the Bay's depressurization alarms starting to sound.
Alvarez: You see? Point, put, pivot, ball-change, forward pitch, so forth... with the thrust on the changes in momentum. Easy. :: Her whole face lit up in a stupid grin. ::
She flicked her arms out again, bracing the flat of her palm against the hilt of the blade, providing the attack with an extra direction and speed. Alvarez read the moment, snatching her wrists from their thrust and butting the blade from her fingers with a smartly deployed nerve-strike. Spines of numbness and slight stinging prickled through her hand, but it did not stop her mad scramble for the weapon, which Alvarez joined with equal aplomb mere seconds earlier. Scraping and scrapping, the two women piled atop one another, grunting and bashing as they did.
After a few tense, heavy moments, the knife was in Alvarez's hand and Eru was attempting to smother were with close proximity to not allow her the moment to strike.
Alvarez: Ironic really - you're about to be finished by your own history, and me saved by mine. :: Her face softened. :: It's not too late. You can still stop this.
Ghant: You. Don't. OWN ME!
A quick dart of movement. A new flash of pain. And Eru Ghant saw the blade sticking awkwardly from her shoulder, just to the top of her arm crook. This Alvarez looked...terrified at the turn of events. But what did she think Eru was trying to do?
She finally spoke meekly as Eru felt herself go woozy with a single step toward her, keeping on hand clamped on the blade to try and staunch its bleeding and the other reaching out to the officer.
Alvarez: :: Breathing heavily. :: Maybe starfleet isn't all the same, eh?
Ghant: F-Finish. IT!
But she was only greeted with the ashen face of a child. Somewhere...miles away...someone was warning of...something. Something about the Cargo Bay. She blinked and saw the Feds moving away into the corridor behind a newly erected shimmering status field.
Why would they need the field?
Eru Ghant never got her answer as a sudden stiff, but hollow feeling cold overtook her and the darkness came, pulling her backward roughly and spilling her into the yawn of the cosmos.
((A Week Later. Black Site 5.))
A Voice: Wake herrrrrrr.
A glassy hiss and sudden rushing liquids cut through the pregnant silence of the Black Site. Cold metal harshed the pads of Eru's feet as she is almost tossed onto unsteady legs. They buckle slightly, crumpling her at the base of the tank and against its glass. She shivered slightly, suddenly aware of her lost time. She whirled her eyes to her shoulder. The wound was gone. Along with most of her others. But the puckering lime green flesh of their scars remained. As did the slightly creaky nature of her breathing. Gone was the pain but it was an effort.
More sloshing sounds demanded her attention. But it was much more...tactile than the quickening jelly of the medi-tank. Almost directed. Almost...
oO Alive Oo came her first thought and feeling of terror in this new "form".
Ghant: W-Who is there?! Where is my crew!?
A Voice: Yooooour surviving crew is here. J-Just toooopsidddde. R-Recuperating.
Ghant: And my SHIP?!
A Voice: S-s-sevvverely damaaaaaged, b-but salvagableeeeeeeee. I-t--t-t-t- is docked in my p-personal yaardsss, Captain. Wheeeeennn your b-b-body was turned o-o-overrr by my Islesssss contact, I t-t-ook the liberrrrrttty of finding heeeerrr drift-t-ting hulk.
Ghant: And to whom do I owe this courtesy?
The noise-maker hoved into the light of the room. A bubbling, pulsing mass of brackish black ooze. It pearled itself and squirmed into Eru's eyeline. Close enough that she could kiss it. A perfect sphere of dripping black oil.
Tamazotz: I ammmmm Direct-t-t-or Tamazotz of the Sheliak C-c-Corporate and I have a buissnessss proposition for youuuuuu....
MSNPC Captain Eru Ghant
Corsair Captain of the Razor's Edge
Privateer-at-Large In Exodus.
As Simmed By
QUENTIN COLLINS III
U.S.S. ARROW NCC-69829