Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Story Seed - Skyward

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Stella whooped with joy, the engine of her bi-plane was purring like a great cat once more. It felt good to be up in the Blue. The two weeks on Terrace Steel Wing while Killian worked the Canary's engine over had been agonizing. She'd hemorrhaged funds to pay for the repairs, her room, her board, and all the while the best she could manage for work was low paying watch duty. 

Now though, the Canary was back soaring through the Blue, and Stella even had a contract. A strong box locked in her storage that needed to get to Terrace Green ASAP. Stella rolled her craft, noting that the engine didn't even seem to notice; she'd have to thank Killian again. She looked up at the Bright, and then rolled the craft onto its wing to get a look down; down into the deeps of the Blue and beyond that the Black. 

Stella righted the craft and set course for Terrance Green. She had a good few hours of flying to get there, and she really couldn't afford to waste fuel until she had a little more coin in her pockets. Leveling off Stella craned her neck and checked in all directions, as well as sparing a glance both to the Bright and the Black. She was alone in the Blue today, or at least alone for a good fifteen or twenty miles. She smiled broadly, today kept on getting better and better, back in the Blue, no pirates or enemy ships in sight, and she had a paying job; it was almost too good to be true.

Four hours later Stella saw a great black column of smoke on the horizon, a sooty line that got larger the closer she drew. After an hour it was obvious the smoke was coming from Terrace Green, and within the next half hour Stella grew more and more horrified as she approached the farming terrace. The buildings, all of them, were still burning, but worst, even more horrifying, was seeing the fields burn. Who could possibly bring themselves to burn arable land, and perfectly good produce. Terrace Green produced enough food to feed a half dozen other Terraces, and now it was burning. Stella circled, saw that the landing strips were clear and brought the Canary down.

Stella dropped down off the Canary's wing and looked around in dismay. Burned bodies were everywhere. The building were either burning or charred ruins. Nothing moved but the dancing flames and the blowing smoke. There was only death and destruction here. But why?

The low droning of heavy engines powering massive vertical lift propellers broke the funerary silence. Stella spun and saw a great airship rising from Blackward. The blood red banners with inverted black triangles made her heart quail. Pirates. The Crimson Points were well known reavers of the skies. "Give us the strong box, and we'll let you live!" thundered a menacing voice from dozens of speakers mounted on the airship.

"Yeah, right," Stella muttered. She clambered up into the cockpit of the Canary and kicked the engine over. It was going to take her best flying to escape. Whatever was in the strongbox in her hold, was enough to get an entire Terrace destroyed, and that meant it was valuable. Too valuable for these pirates to let her live. She took off and immediately dove for the Black. With a little luck the Canary could lose them in the thin air of the deep Blue. 

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