The Apostasy Gambit
Ishta part 4
Ishta Watched as the lift doors closed, outside the little steel bubble in which she now stood the once butch but unmistakably human Rosabel hissed venomously then turned and rushed at Lazarus.
As the doors shut she was left in the near dark, a small dim bulb in the roof of the lift was the only source of light and it flickered ominously constantly threatening to go out forever.
Still holding her stub auto she crossed her hand into a crude aquillar, her words beseeching the emperor to protect her.
She closed her eyes for a second but the horrors that threatened to find her in the dark forced her to open them again.
She glanced at the walls of her rusted metal prison, they would not protect her they would not keep out the things that lurked in the warp.
The prison rocked violently in its shaft, knocking her to the ground and the sound of tearing metal filled the air…
Something huge and terrible that lay in the warp just outside wrapped some kind of appendage around the ship.
Laying in the corner of the lift Ishta pulled her knees into her chest, glancing at the empty pistol in her hand she resisted the urge to cry, instead she focused on pulling a fresh clip from her pocket pressing it into the gun her eyes scanned the cell for intruders.
The idea of shutting herself away, alone, began to feel like the worst decision she had made in her life, as the lifts agonisingly slow progress continued to draw out the possibility of her being discovered by one of the many demonic entities that inhabited the immaterium and now this ship.
A clank shook her thoughts back to reality, as the doors began to open at her destination, bringing her pistol to bear she looked out into the outer cockpit chamber expecting the worst…
it was empty
barren of all life and unlife.
Standing she stepped to the doorway warily, still expecting the worst, but there was nothing, behind her she could hear the sounds of fighting.
In front of her the cockpit was silent…
What waited for her in that silence?
She mustered her courage, clicked open the safety on her pistol and open the door to the cockpit.
The sound of a gun shot rang through the air…
Ishta’s head jerked to the side on instinct but not far enough.
A searing pain spread across her head as the bullet grazed across the back of her skull.
It wasn’t the first time she’d been hurt in her life, but since the penal legions, since the inquisition, she’d been shot at she’d been threatened but never hurt.
The pain brought focus to her world.
“For fuck sake, hold your fire”
“shit sorry, its you Ishta…
I thought you were Javier” Vladimir’s voice was clearly trembling as he spoke
“Javier” with what she had seen of Corvin and Rosabel Ishta thought better than to ask why he’d be shooting at one of the crew.
“We need to get the ship out of the warp”
“But those things”
“I’ll worry about whats out there”
Ishta pulled herself into the seat next to Vladimir.
“You worry about translating the ship out of warp”
As she spoke Ables voice came over her auspex.
“Were in the engine room we need to get the gelller field back up but we don’t how”
She looked to Vladimir, Able’s voice had not come over the ship’s coms system, flicking the com’s back on.
“why are the com’s off, people need are help”
“But Ishta the things…
The things are in the coms”
“So are our friends…
Able need help getting the geller field online, and you need to get this ship out of the warp”
I can’t do both”
“Then do what needs to be done first”
Able’s voice came back across the main coms
“Vladimir, thank the emperor how do we get power back to the geller field, There’s a bottle of vodka for you if you get us out of this”
“Ill need more than vodka”
Ishta squeezed his shoulder
“You’ll get it " she winked
Well, we need…
Shit I don’t know”
Ishta could see the fear and panic in Vladimir’s face, the same feelings filled her heart, but panic would not help them now.
She thought back to all the times she’d had to lay smiling, whispering words of encouragement to some fat ugly trader who wanted to celebrate his latest deal.
This was no different Vladimir didn’t need to know how scared she was, he needed to know he was going to save them.
Smiling she placed a hand on his knee, her face portraying not a hint of the fear she felt inside.
“You can do this, you can save us all”
Buoyed by her words Vladimir started shouting short precise commands to Able, as he prepped the ship for translation to real space.
The ship’s hull began to creak as the vacuum of real space pulled at it, Ishta closed her eyes as she sacrificed a prayer to the emperor that the damaged ship’s skin would hold.
Vladimir glanced around the control panels, opening his mouth to speak he found himself unable.
As Ishta wasted no time in expressing her gratitude, and for filling her promise to him.