Thursday, 17 November 2016

Better wet than white

Another Birthday story today - This one is for the person whose stay in hospital started the whole idea of my Edward Teach Stories turning into the Windspider Chronicles... She's also the person behind the character Lee'Sahr - Without her, none of this would have happened, so there's that to thank her for... Well, I say thank. In this episode, we're introduced to Carter Landry, who is a Bostonian crew-member (From Boston, in America, not from the planet Boston - Because that would be mental) and I've always thought that he'd be played by the actor Luke Kleintank, should there ever be a film. (Even though he's from Ohio)


“I’ve tried that… We’re still all going to die.” Lee’Sahr shouted into the Intercomm, sounding calmer than she felt.

“Try it again, make sure you shut down the thrusters completely before you try the cold restart.”

“Why don’t you just…?” She hit the fire dampener button with the flat of her hand, the whine of the electric motor confirming that she had completely run out of foam. “If I could stop the engines, or even put out the fire, I wouldn’t be in this mess.”

“Roger Skimmer Four, hold for instructions.”

“She’s going to kill us you know.” Britt called from the rear seat, “When she figures out we borrowed the skimmer just to get more beer for your Birthday.”

“We’ll be lucky if she gets the chance… Are you making a den?”

Britt stopped jamming floatation devices into any gap he could find and looked up at her. “I’m assuming a crash position for when we splashdown.”

“At the back?”

“Well, unless you’re intending to jam the handbrake on at the last minute, spin us around and reverse us into the ocean, yes… I’m sitting at the back, surrounded by spongy things that float.”

“What about me?”

“You’re driving.”

“What ‘bout me?” Mr. Rax uncurled his orange bulk from between the seats, where he had been hiding his giant Pradilan head and trying to think of happier, drier times.

The Intercomm beeped. “Rax, I think it’ll take more than crashing into the sea at…” She looked at the airspeed indicator, “almost the speed of sound to crack your scaly hide.  Yes?” The last comment was meant for the person on the other end of the Intercomm, but it still managed to put a confused look on Rax’s face, so that was nice.

Landry’s relaxed Bostonian voice rang from the Intercomm speaker, “Skimmer Four, this is Sidi Ferruch base, Carter Landry speaking, are you receiving?”

“Yeah, we’re still on fire, how’re things working out for you today?”

He laughed, “Lookin’ forward to your party, hope you can make it. You have all the beer. Lady Dorleith’s genuinely worried about you… And her skimmer.” There was the unmistakable sound of him putting his embroidered cowboy boots up on the control panel and leaning back into his seat, “Yeah, mostly the skimmer to be fair, she says those things are, like, really expensive…”

Lee’Sahr shook her head, “Look, is this just a social call or have you any last minute ideas on how we might survive the next few minutes?”

“Don’t get your shipsuit in a bunch. I got an idea, used to do it all the time back on the ranch just to show off. Your problem is that your starboard engine is on fire, right?”

“Yes, starboard is right, well done. Is that important?”

“Well, you’re flying over the sea, and the sea is made of water.”


“And water puts out fire… All you have to do is dip the starboard air-intake into the water, it’ll pick up some water, shoot it through the engine and put the fire out. Then you can do the cold restart. Simple.”

“Yeah, thanks Landry, nothing to it. I’ll call you back when it’s done.” She flicked off the Intercomm, 

“You hear that Britt?”

A forearm with an extended thumb rose from the pile of floatation devices, then slowly disappeared back inside again.

“OK,” She stretched her fingers and grabbed the control stick. “Counting down to dipping a wing into the water whilst we’re going way too fast that will lead to us cartwheeling across the waves and disintegrating into a giant fireball of death in 5… 4… 3… 2…”


She shot a look back at Rax, “Sorry, dropped this.” He pointed at an obviously well-loved teddy-bear with six inches of glossy black claw, then held it tightly to his chest, screwed his eyes closed and nodded.

“5… 4… 3… 2…”


She turned around again to see Britt’s head sticking out of his protective mound. “What colour T-Shirt do you have on under your shipsuit?”


“Well, whether this works or not, we’re probably going to get wet, and if you’re wearing a white T-shirt… Well, it’s your reputation I’m thinking of you know.”

“By the bare-buttocked Goddess of inappropriacy… ONE!” She jammed the control stick hard to the right and they hit the water…

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