[url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/257344913/0/0]Link to Chapter 4, Part 3[/url]
[spoiler]All chapters of the War of Lies will be linked to the [url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/257167399/0/0]Table of Contents[/url] as they are posted[/spoiler]
Now the squad leader was speaking quietly with the woman and the gunman next to her, probably explaining that he was one of the only two people of decent standing left, which didn’t mean a whole lot within our rabble of scum. There was some pointing, mostly directed at the squad leader, and also towards the guy who had acted as our deck officer when we still had a fleet. He was the other man of relative rank. He had kept to himself since the battle because he knew as well as we did that no one in this lot was going to listen to the guy who had just made sure that some doors, pipes, and engines would work.
They waved the deck officer over, and the three seemed to be explaining something to him. After a few moments more of my shifting impatiently in the cold, I was pleased to see the woman reach out her hand to the squad leader to close some agreement. He took her hand to shake it, and the woman’s gunman raised his rifle at his head. The squad leader tried to duck away, but the woman’s grip kept him from escaping as the barrel lined up.
Everyone’s guns came up as the body hit the rock we stood on, including my own, but no one else on either side fired. There was a tense moment where I thought some idiot would start the firefight between the two Mob groups even with all these prisoners around, but thankfully the situation was left in the hands of the only two people who didn’t have weapons.
The woman extended her hand towards the deck officer, who stared at it distrustfully for a long moment before shaking it. This time, no one got shot.
“Inside!” The woman ordered loudly, and all but two of her troops receded back into the structure.
Now the deck officer turned to us. “They get half of whatever the prisoners get us.”
“You wanna say that again?!” A Mob man challenged.
“They could take more! The only reason we’re not all dead is because they need manpower to contain this Syndicate slop!” The officer waved his hand at the prisoners, “Take what money you’re given or go give that bodyguard a nice fondle and see what happens!”
No one wanted to get handsy with the man who just shot a subordinate, so we all accepted the situation and began to file inside with the prisoners at gunpoint.
It wasn’t exactly bright outside or even dark inside, but I still wasn’t able to make out the interior of the building until we had crossed through the half-open gate. It was definitely the hangar, with several light fighters inside and a couple slightly larger ships scattered around. The inside was just as bleak and minimalist as the outside, but at least there wasn’t ice everywhere thanks to the heating. A glance up revealed a ceiling divided into slates so that it could open up to let ships come and go vertically instead of being limited to the one wall that opened up. A single huge hunk-of-junk cruiser rested on the far end of the space, just as blocky but slightly more colorful than the home it sat in. That would be our ride.
A small number of security and maintenance staff wandered about with helmets and fully insulated gear on, showing that the hangar wasn’t pressurized even if the open gates hadn’t been enough evidence, but to our left I could see windows looking into the hangar from the other section of the building with unprotected people inside. We probably wouldn’t get a chance to recover in the hospitable part of this place, but at least the ship would be warm and the recycled air wouldn’t smell like my own bad breath.
“We were just about to send her out, you know,” the woman’s voice rang out again, referring to the cruiser, and it took me a moment to spot her this time with all the bustling people around me, “You shouldn’t have come here. BUT… it’s no skin off my nose if Seren kills you for knowing this place exists. Maybe she’ll send some of you back to work for me until you die of boredom. We’re down a few men now anyway. Thank the Hive for your new job opportunity, not the boredom.”
“I ain’t working for that witch until I die,” I whispered to Dikedda, “I imagine she’ll be in charge of hell by the time I get down there.”
“She’s already in charge of hell,” Dikedda reminded me of the wasteland we were situated in.
“ANYONE who touches ANYTHING gets thrown back outside,” the woman warned, pausing just as she was starting to turn to lead us across the hangar so she could add to the threat, “And you’ll be lucky if you still have your helmet.”
We made it halfway across the hangar before the woman’s bodyguard rejoined her from wherever he had split off to. He leaned close to say something to her and they stopped, forcing our entire procession to halt. They spoke a little more, close and clearly at a whisper, not that I would’ve been able to hear them at normal volume. While they chatted I looked around some more. The small jumpships that were docked in here looked like hunks of scrap taped together, but they had some serious looking guns on them.
I wondered why they hadn’t helped us fight.
I spotted the eyes of some Fallen Dregs peering out at us from below a pair of the ships that were being worked on, none wearing the colors of any House. It always disgusted me how similar the Reef Mob Fallen were to the Reef Mob humans; a bunch of lowlifes crawling to Seren for scraps. I hated being able to compare myself to the aliens. We were also being watched by what looked like every gunman in the outpost, only numbering a little less than our own force. A couple were Vandals, watching from beams and catwalks high above our heads with fur capes and Wire Rifles slung over their backs.
“ALRIGHT!” The Awoken woman shouted for the whole hangar to hear, turning away from her bodyguard and shifting her gaze across all of her own personnel rather than us for a change. Everyone froze and looked at her, even the two Vandals above, who had started chatting. “Who was screwing with the door wiring?”
Silence answered. No tools. No voices. One dying hum of an engine that had been hurriedly shut off.
“If ONE DOOR locks up, or ONE HIVE gets in, ALL OF YOU will wish you were stuck with this Thrall food!” The boss lady warned furiously, jabbing her thumb back at us. I wanted to see some Thrall eat her.
“So save yourselves some trouble, and someone tell me who gets fired,” the way the bodyguard hefted his weapon as she said those words made it clear that fired meant killed.
A warbled crackle sounded, making it clear the PA system was just turned on. “That,” a man’s voice came to life over the speakers, “Was me. Sorry about that.”
[url=https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/257384661/0/0]Link to Chapter 4 Part 5[/url]