USS VINDEX - NCC-2474-A
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Sweet Relief

Posted on Sat Jun 3rd, 2017 @ 5:58am by Lieutenant Kazyah Linn
Edited on on Sat Jun 3rd, 2017 @ 6:12am

Mission: S2E1 - Secrets
Location: Unknown Station
Timeline: Mission Day 88 - 2132 hours

The throng of people moved about the cramped space, all going about their lives without a single thought to the grand scheme of the underworld that operated among them. The noise level was calm and steady as the pedestrians minded their business. To the untrained eye, nothing would seem out of place. But for Kaz, every movement was noticed and the patterns began to emerge in plain sight.

Here he stood on the edge of a precipice, his previous life spread out before him. The darkness called to him. The shadows pulled at the hem of his cloak, begging him to walk among them, as he used to do. He took a deep breath and closed his eyes, allowing his mind to reach out as it used to. Despite his transfer to a position of administration, the old Kazyah still lived and breathed within him.

A cruel smile graced his lips as a feeling of belonging washed over him. This was where he was meant to be. The rigid life of being on a Starship was a waste of the talents. And even after all this time, the taste of blood exhilarated him into a driving force of nature.

He took a step back from the crowd and crossed behind a large pillar. Like an old habit, he moved around the station with ease, as if he'd never left. Moments passed and Kaz stepped into the shadow of the promenade and disappeared.




"You're late," Kaz said, his fingers drumming on the table he sat at. He turned and looked at the man who was walking up behind him. "You look surprised to see me."

"No, I'm neither." The Rigelian's facial creases deepened his already stern scowl. "You're on my time, and I was expecting you sooner or later." He walked past Kaz and took the seat facing the entrance he had just used.

"Let's make this quick," he said, casting a sidelong glance over his shoulder. "What is it this time?"

Kaz leaned forward, dropping his voice low. "I need any information on a Vulcan. He goes by either Saalkan or Za'ul."

The Rigelian fidgeted, then counted the five fingers on his right hand and the 3 on his left. "He was killed several weeks ago. His remains were destroyed at DS9. Nasty figure."

"I need more up-to-date information," Kaz said, looking at the man for any signs of dishonesty.

The Rigelian scowled even deeper. His lip ticked as he spoke. "I imagine his space dust got sucked into the Bajoran wormhole and has been spread across the galaxy. What does it matter?"

"Who gave you this information?" Kaz asked, ignoring the man's question.

"I never reveal my sources," the Rigelian said. "You know that."

"Unfortunately, the circumstances beg to differ," Kaz said, his voice turning dark and angry. "You will tell me your source."

"Just for that, I'll expect double the usual price next time." The Rigelian made to stand. "In case you didn't figure it out, that means our time is up."

As he turned to walk away, Kazyah grabbed the man by the arm, stopping his movement. "Sit down."

"Piss off." The Rigelian shook his arm to get free, then fixed Kaz with a threatening stare when he couldn't break the man's grip. "People will know I'm missing," he said sternly. "I have a deadman's contract. You do anything to me, and fifty bars of latinum, 25,000 darseks, and 40,000 Federation credits will be automatically placed on your head."

"Why would I kill you?" Kaz asked, his face forming with confusion. "You've always been a good informant that I can trust. But I need you to understand the gravity of the situation." He nodded his head towards the chair in an obvious request for the Rigellian to sit again.

"You don't pay enough to give me orders," the Rigelian said. He pulled a disruptor from his belt and aimed it at Kazyah from below the table. "I'm walking out of here now, and I don't particularly care if it's the easy way or the hard way."

Kaz simply let go of the man's arm. "Alright, of course. You can leave."

The Rigelian returned the disruptor to his belt. "Also, the price doubled yet again for next time. Let that be a lesson to you." He hurried to the shadowy doorway.

Kaz's eyes narrowed in annoyance as his hand instinctively went to his belt. He felt the hard blade concealed there and smiled. While it wasn't the only weapon he carried on his person during these assignments, it was his favorite and most-used tool. The Romulan Ceremonial Daggar he'd used to make his first kill. A family heirloom on his mother's side that he'd always admired as a child.

The man stood and walked through the doorway.




As it happened, the Rigelian information broker had nothing else to do that day. He still slummed through the back parlors and waysides of the station, following his normal routine albeit with a random route.

By the time he made it to his bunker where he intended to go to ground for a few days, he was muttering aloud.

"Damn Linn. Damn Saalkan. Damn Federation."

The door closed behind him with a creaky protest. He bolted it, latched it, chained it, and then set an magna-lock for good measure.

When he turned around, he saw his computer terminal was on. He distinctly remembered turning it off. Slowly, carefully, the Rigelian reached for his disruptor again.

Air moved his right side, and he spun to train his disruptor on whatever had displaced it.

As he turned, a pair of hands grabbed him and shoved him against the wall as a metallic object was pressed against his neck.

"Don't even bother screaming," Kaz said, his voice low and menacing. "Drop the weapon or I kill you."

The disruptor fell to the ground with a clang. "Kill me and every gangster and headhunter in the quadrant will be after you to collect their bounty. Not even Section 31 can protect you from that." The Rigelian sneered at Kaz. "Yes, I know about your little promotion. Think that gives you licence to do whatever you want? Think again."

The Rigelian spat in his face.

Kaz winced as the saliva made contact. His anger seethed beneath the surface. In quick motion, he removed the knife from the man's throat and shoved it into his abdomen with impressive force.

"Despite your information network, you're so uninformed." A wicked smile spread as Kaz's eyes twinkled with pure pleasure. "You would think that the loss of your two fingers would be a reminder to not cross me. I suppose this time you need a more firm lesson." Kaz twisted the knife slightly, eliciting a pained cry from the man.

"You fool!" The Rigelian gurgled blood from his mouth. His breathing turned ragged. "You'll find nothing here. I keep no records. Everything is committed to memory." He started chuckling. "You... you screwed up."

"No, you fucked up." Letting go of the dagger, Kaz's hands when to the man's neck. He closed his eyes as his grip tightened. Reaching out with his mind, Kaz tore through the man's flimsy mental barriers with ease as the information he desired came flooding towards him. Everything the Rigellian held most dear was laid out before him like a feast of knowledge and Kaz was soaking up every delicious morsel.

There was nothing that Kaz could not see. From the man's extensive knowledge and information archives to his complete roster of informants and contact procedures, it was all there. Kaz committed everything to memory, choosing to save everything he could for a rainy day. But what was most frustrating was the information he desired most was absent. No information on Saalkan past what the Rigellian had said. He had been telling the truth.

Kaz growled as he broke the mental bond, having taken everything the man held most dear. He took a deep breath to still his anger as he looked back at the man. "I suppose I should thank you for the gift you've given me. Oh, don't worry. I'm sure I'll find a wonderful use for your informant network."

"Yo... y-y-y-y-you..." The Rigelian convulsed as he forced the words out through his uncooperative mouth. His left eye had bloodied and turned dead to one side. "F-f-forgot th-th-this."

The Rigelian held out a trembling hand that dropped something on the ground. He fought to turn it palm up, which revealed an incendiary grenade. The broken man laughed through a drooling, crooked smile at the look on Kaz's face.

A split second passed, during which time many different things flew through Kaz's mind. A decision was reached in a fraction of that time and he moved to comply. His hand grasped the blade, ripping it from the man's body as he turned to the door. But before he could take a single step, the grenade detonated, throwing him against the massive door as shrapnel pierced his skin.

In the aftermath of the explosion, Kaz laid on the floor, his vision blurred as the edges began to tinge green. He could feel the ache in his body but he was unable to move. His eyes drooped as the blood drained from the puncture wounds that covered his body, his cloak becoming wet and sticky with the resin.

This was it, a moment he had long awaited. But unlike most, who feared death and the absolute end that it entailed, Kaz saw things completely differently. His mind played like a movie reel, images from his past that haunted him before now welcomed him with a vindictive malice that he knew he deserved. But a single figure stood out in his mind.

"Tyori," he whispered, barely able to make the words out as a tear formed in the corner of one eye. The droplet fell down the side of his face and buried itself in his hair.

No, Kaz did not fear death. He welcomed the experience with open arms as he saw this opportunity for the gift it was giving it. Sweet relief from the pain.

OOC: Nathan (Akiva) played the Rigellian. This is his credit for killing Kaz.

 

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