Despatche #016

Day 4,400, 00:37 Published in Ireland Ireland by Sethesin

4.4 Tadgh Fiacre "White Stag" Mac Allistar, White Stag Unit, Rasa Blank

The Nightingale Vorpal Super Dopper Choppersaurus Rex had us within our target distance so quick I could sense the impotent fury of Muis emanating from the cockpit. He'd barely had to lift a finger and when Dr. Ali suggested the moniker "Banshee Type Two" he threw a tantrum, ranting on about how we'd be launched into a cliff or drop out of the sky should a wire cross or someone spill their beer. I remembered the Banshee, it had earned its name. When'er it's rusty presence filled the sky with it's ear-drum bursting noise someone always died. Old but reliable. I knew why he was upset. I felt like the living equivalent. People looked at me like I was a ghost. I suppose I was figuratively. I don't recall much after the fall of Muldoanich. People were now dead, some now pregnant, having families and others just getting by. I asked about the fate of the Assouleys and got a look like I was insane, but not in the keep him sedated he's a wild man way, more like there he goes again waffling like it was four, five months ago. Lord above the world runs by fast.

I'd just barely got my wits back thanks to Dr. Payne or Macallistar-Payne as she was called now. I looked around at the people sat in this hyper luxury Helicopter. There was Muis up "piloting" with Dr. Ali, then Mick O'Malley avoiding all eye contact, which to be fair wasn't unusual. There were two others, both slight of frame and continental looking. "So, you've brought the charges yeah? We need to get in and out as quick as possible." They both nodded wide eyed. It seemed like everything I said was either painfully obvious or even worse, painfully foolish. Why did that little Goshawk runt not finish it? If there was a limbo or purgatory this would be it. Not knowing what's going on and everyone else too shy or embarrassed to tell you. Muis wrapped on the plexi-glass. We got into our gear. We were coming near to the D.Z. Maybe the "Black Hound" would be down there once we landed, telling me to get over myself. Ara sure he'd be right in fairness, we had a job to do.

4.5 Lionel "Orphan" Winters, Blind Unit, Rasa Blank

I'd checked around the office for more evidence once I'd my hands on the List of Academy Board Members. I wasn't looking for more information, I was looking for any confirmation that what I had in my hands was false. She was on the list. The other names were fairly obvious but why was she there? I could hear the gun fight far off, past the door. Maybe I was going mad. No, I wasn't, there was her name bold as brass on the sheet of paper. So why leave it loose? Maybe this was a Goshawk plan to split the ranks? Es muss sein. She'd never betray us. Not after everything we'd been through. At least she wouldn't betray me. I was her bodyguard. Nastya appeared at the door.

"This means nothing right? You're one of us." I said as she closed the door behind her. She spotted the sheet of paper in my hand. "Oh, sure. Why'd I betray you Lionel? Listen, we've gotta get out of here. The both of us. No time to talk, let's go!" She pulled upon my jackets lapel but I didn't budge. "Why would they though... Tell me your not one of them." She opened the door to barge out but I grasped her arm. She hit me a back slap so hard I went dizzy. "Look, there's no use thinking about things Lionel! Remember Andrews? He thought about things and now he's gone. We've got to keep..." The cat was out of the bag. "Tell me now, are you one of them?" I said, placing a hand on my pistol. She walked closer to me without a word.

"I like you Lionel, you know that. Just give me that sheet of paper and we can run! We can get out of here together." I seen the knife but I'd quit at that stage. She stabbed me so many times she was as bloody as me. "I'm so sorry Lionel, they'll get me if you tell... Can you ever forgive me?" I nodded then slumped to the ground, lightheaded. She blew me a kiss as she walked out the door. I looked down at my wounds. "Wait! Nastya!" I hadn't got much time. The pool of blood was enormous. She reappeared, pistol in hand, peeking behind the doorway. "Good night Nastya." She burst into tears. "Sweet dreams Lionel." I heard her sobs echo away into the depths of the Monolith. I was feeling drained, both emotionally and physically. Before I hit the hay I managed to pen with by wine dark blood "Junior Council Academician, Nastya "Raven" Mikhailovna" on the wall. It took a hell of a lot of concentration, I hoped it looked legible. The gunfight grew suddenly more bombastic as I drifted off. Maybe they'd find me? Who would even care?

4.6 2nd Commander Joe "Jackdaw" Quigley, White Stag Unit, Rasa Blank

I didn't think a person even had that much blood inside them. He'd written something on the wall but it made absolutely no sense. I couldn't believe Winters was still conscious. I told him to keep counting to ten in sets as I bandaged him as best I could. Once the cavalry arrived with a seemingly reanimated Commander Mac Allistar in the mix the tide turned quickly. Three of Tideman's men were K.I.A, Tideman was in chains and now Muis, Flinch and Gad where having a competition over how best to blow up what was essentially a mountain. "How many tens is that Winters?" He didn't answer. I slapped his pale face. "23, *ahem* 7, 8, 9, 10, that's 24 Jackdaw. We nearly there?" I rushed along the tall, grim corridors as fast as I could but my own wounds had me weighed down.

By the time we got to the entrance I collapsed. I'd still enough mustard to ask about Winters. Lovely kind Doctor Ali was there all dressed up in military gear. "He's on an I.V drip Joe but he's lost a lot of blood so it's best to keep reasonable expectations." I nodded with a smile. Why was I smiling? I was worried about my friend who was at death's door. The other lads seemed jovial. Mac Allistar, or what looked like a stick figure drawing of him had started to come around, which was nice, I suppose. Once we landed in les Grandes Conches we called into the Geneva Prio Civ Council about a "Imminent Mining Blunder" and watched from afar as the mountain rumbled. I thought it was impressive, it set all the Prio Civ security alarms off in the valley but I suppose Muis, Flinch and Gad wanted the whole mountain to explode by their lackluster reaction.

Winters flatlined on the flight home. Dr. Ali did all she could but he'd lost too much blood, simple as. She said it had been a miracle he'd even gotten that far. I kept thinking about what he'd scrawled on the wall. I'd never even asked, I was too busy trying to keep him conscious. The lads sang "the Parting Glass" then tossed him from the Chopper into Dublin Bay before we got back to Liberty Hall. The way I'm saying it makes it sound disrespectful, but the lads all said a few words. It was... Oof... It was kinda respectful. I was carted off to the Med Bay. I could hear the celebrations a couple stories down with the occasional pause and a roar of "To Winters!" I was plagued with guilt. I should have been quicker, I'd found him too late. I dozed off... What was he trying to say on that wall smeared with blood?

X.X Nastya "Raven" Mikhailovna

"Lucky lucky you, Miss Mikhailovna!" Oh G*d, how'd he get here so soon? I was miles away from the Monolith and there he stood, in my hotel, seventh floor, in front of my room with his big crude grin. "What do you want Roger?" He licked his thumb and smoothed out his eyebrows. "Oh nothing really. World peace, an end to world hunger... You know..." I wasn't in the mood for his games. "Give me that list of names now or I'll peel your father's face off and slam his head into a bowl of salt, you trottel!" I guess he wasn't in the mood for games either. I handed over the paper, all scrolled up. "Good! Great! I'll be on my way, so sorry for being rude." he said insincerely. "Proshchay mademoiselle Voronoy!" I tried to rush into my room before he could harass me any further. "Oh! Seems like a name has been scratched out of the list. One could argue it has in fact been torn out of the list." he said half way away by the stairwell. "Shame about that Raven. It's a kinda no backsies kinda agreement." I crossed my arms, fed up. "So what?" He smiled his nothing smile, ear to ear.

"Oh and your friend the short, swarthy bespectacled guy?" Oh no, no, no! He had Winters tied up somewhere or something awful, my mind burned. "He didn't survive. My condolences." He was lying, he had to be. I'd only grazed him a couple of times. "So sorry, only just heard it through the grapevine. Well I best be off, Dobroy nochi Ms. Mikhailovna." I heard his footsteps echo down the long flight of stairs as he whistled his signature tune. I was beyond tears. Numb, I opened my hotel room half expecting Lionel to be in their, happy and amiable and what Roger said to be another one of his joyless pranks. The lights flickered on but he wasn't there. I heard Rogers tune ringing in my ears. He wasn't there.

Thank you for reading! So this is the last season...
Started back in Day 4,083
Thanks to everyone who has followed our tale this far.

Go raibh maith agat!

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