Uprising 29-03

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“What do you mean, what are we gonna do about it?” Isaac demanded fifteen minutes later, once he and the others had caught up and we’d had a chance to explain the situation. Looking around at all of us, the boy added, “I mean, hey, don’t get me wrong. Sucks for them. But there aren’t enough words in the English language to describe how much this isn’t our problem.”

Sands gave him a thoroughly disgusted look at that. “Oh, right, real empathetic there, Isaac.”

“It’s not about being empathetic,” the boy shot back. “It’s about being realistic. Look, the only reason those Seosten freaks haven’t dropped an entire army on top of us already is that they don’t know we’re here, right? We’re alive and free because they have no idea where we are. We try to get involved in this and how do you think it’ll go? Cuz I can tell you. The skies will open up and they will drop a veritable shit-ton of troops down on our heads. And they won’t stop coming after us until we’re either dead, or their obedient little puppet-slaves. I told you, I feel for the guy. But if we get involved, we won’t be helping anyone. We’ll just be a bunch of meatsuit puppets.”

Sighing under my breath, I looked over to where the chameleon-guy was. He’d pushed his back up against the nearby tree, and his eyes were darting around fearfully as he watched our every move. So far, he hadn’t reacted to anything we said, so I was pretty sure he didn’t understand English. Which was just going to end up making this even more complicated than it already was.

Roxa spoke up, having moved away to transform back into her human self. “So we just, what, ignore the guy? Walk away from him and pretend we never saw him? Is that what you suggest?”  

“Well, we can’t exactly do that either, can we?” Isaac pointed out then. “He runs out of here, and you really think he won’t sell us out to the first Seosten guard he sees to save his own skin?”

Roxa’s retort was sharp as her eyes blazed at that. “So what, you wanna take him prisoner? Or did you want to do something else, Isaac, something a little more permanent than that, maybe?”

“Look, you can take him prisoner if you want,” the boy quickly replied while shaking his head. “I’m not some bloodthirsty monster, I’m being pragmatic. If we get involved, we are all going to die or be enslaved. If we let him go and he tells them where we’re hiding, we are all going to die or be enslaved. Do you want that to happen? Because I don’t. I like myself in charge of myself.”

Roxa gave him a dirty look. “But you’re fine with just leaving a bunch of innocent people out there to be enslaved and experimented on, as long as it’s not you? That’s just fucking swell?”

“I never said it was swell!” he retorted. “I said we couldn’t do anything about it. I told you, if we get involved, we’ll save maybe a few of them, and then the Seosten will drop down on us with the fury of a thousand suns. Everyone we saved will be dead or enslaved again, and so will we. You really wanna risk your life just to get these people a few fucking minutes of freedom?”

Taking a step that way, Roxa spoke in a low, yet powerful voice as she met the boy’s gaze. “Let me make one thing perfectly clear to you. I would risk my life to give one person one minute of freedom. And then I’d do it again for another minute. And again for another minute. I would put my life on the line every second, every minute, every hour of every single goddamn day if it gave one of these innocent people the freedom that they deserve for as long as I managed to survive. So, you wanna know if I’d really risk my life to save them right now? Fuck yes.”

Isaac started to say something then, but was interrupted as Jazz moved past him. She was stepping over by the terrified Alter. Seeing her moving that way, I almost moved to intercept her.

Wait, don’t. Tabbris’s voice in my head cut in. She sounded hesitant. I don’t think she’s um… y-you know, I don’t think she’s gonna do anything bad. We should give her a chance.

I wasn’t sure about that, but I listened to my partner. Still, I kept a close, wary eye on the girl. From the corner of my eye, I saw Roxa doing the same. She looked tense, squinting that way.

By that point, Jazz had taken a knee in front of the man. He was busy trying to push himself back even further into the tree. I was pretty sure he would’ve phased through it if he could have. As it was, he stared at the girl in front of him as if she was a snake that had coiled up and started hissing. The poor guy wasn’t just afraid of us, he was pretty much completely petrified.

“He could be lying.” Jazz’s voice was soft, hesitant. She sounded like she knew this wasn’t going to go over well at all, but still had to say it. “It could be a trap, you know? What if they sent a bunch of these… people out to all these different areas with some sob story to trick us into going where they can grab us, just because they know that you guys think they’re innocent?”

I could see Roxa gearing up again, but before she could launch into another tirade, I stepped that way to put a hand on her arm. “Wait,” I muttered before looking to Jazz. “Just go with me on this. For right now, pretend he’s telling the truth. Just pretend you believe him, hypothetically. If he was telling the truth, and this isn’t some kind of trap, then what do you think we should do?”

Jazz’s mouth opened and shut. I saw the conflict in her eyes before her head shook. “If it wasn’t a trap? I mean, if it’s not a trap? That’s not–I mean… I mean there isn’t any way to know if it’s–”

“Hypothetically, Jazz,” I cut in. “You can do that much, can’t you? If there was a way to be absolutely certain that this isn’t a trap, then what would you choose? Isaac says it’s too dangerous. Roxa says she wants to go in and try anyway. But I wanna know what you say.”

Jazz’s mouth opened and shut a couple times, and she made a noise in the back of her throat. Her eyes darted to the man, back to me, then to the man again while she swallowed. “I… I don’t… I don’t know,” she finally managed while shaking her head rapidly. “I’m sorry, I just–I just don’t know, okay? I…He’s not, he’s not what I…” Turning back to him, she stared openly while he cringed and whimpered, clearly having absolutely no idea what we were talking about. Hell, he probably thought we were discussing which one of us would get to kill him. Or worse.

After staring at that whimpering, terrified figure for a few long seconds, Jazz finally spoke again.  Her soft, weak voice was barely audible, even as close as I was. “He’s not what I expected.”

Sands spoke before Roxa or I could. “You expected a monster.” Stepping over, she gave the Alter a brief look before focusing on the girl herself. “Because that’s what we’re supposed to do, right? We’re supposed to slay monsters and demons. That’s what we grew up learning about. That’s what they told us, that we were the last line of defense against some unrelenting horde of evil creatures, that we were going to save the innocents. We were supposed to be heroes.”

She took a step back, giving a slightly bitter smile as her head shook slowly. “Well, you know what? I’m pretty sure that being a hero is about doing the right thing.” Her eyes flicked toward Isaac. “No matter how dangerous it is.” Then she looked to Jazz. “No matter how hard it is.”

I nodded, biting my lip before the words came, almost of their own volition. “Maybe fuck Crossroads,” I announced, drawing everyone’s attention. “Maybe fuck our teachers. Maybe fuck everyone who ever said how this was supposed to go. Maybe right now, right here is where we decide what we’re going to do. Maybe right now is when we decide who we are. Maybe right now is when we decide what the right thing is for us. No teachers. No rules. No training wheels or safety lines. Nobody’s looking over our shoulders and nobody’s going to tell you what to do. I’m certainly not. It’s your choice. You decide. There’s a bunch of people out there who are being tortured, enslaved, worked to death or experimented on until they just wish they were dead.

“But Isaac’s right,” I continued slowly, purposefully. “If we let them know that we’re still around, things are gonna get bad. They will come after us and it will not be fun. We might lose. We might die. We might end up in just as bad a situation as the people that we’re trying to help are in. Maybe even worse. So you guys tell me, what is the right thing to do in that situation? We can keep hiding, and let these people suffer. Or we can step out and do something about it.”    

Roxa was the first one to speak after I had finished, her voice firm. “Do something about it.”

Sands was already nodding, fists clenched tightly as she agreed, “Do something about it.”

Jazz let out a long, low sigh then. She was still looking at the ground, fists pressed against the dirt as she hung her head. “I don’t know,” she whispered. “I don’t know how I feel about… about any of this. I want to–I…” Her head shook, and she repeated, “I don’t know. But I…” Finally, she lifted her head to look at at Roxa. “I do know that I’m not going to let you go into something dangerous like that without me. I don’t know how I feel about it, but if you’re going, I’m going.”

“Well shit.” Isaac mumbled under his breath. He lifted his gaze to the sky while muttering something inaudible, then heaved a long, heavy sigh. “What the hell. You all wanna be suicidal, I guess I don’t really have much of a choice, do I? I’m screwed if I just stay out here on my own, and there’s no way dear old roomie’s gonna leave you all flapping in the breeze.” He was obviously trying to sound light, but I could see that the boy wasn’t happy about this whole thing.

Smiling faintly then, Roxa looked over at me. “I guess, aside from Gordon, that just leaves you, technically.” Her chin lifted a little as she gave me a significant look before slowly asking, “What do you say?”  

Except she wasn’t just talking to me, I realized. Roxa knew that there were technically two votes right here. That’s why she was making a point of the question. How about it, partner? I asked inwardly. This puts you in danger too. Maybe more than us. If they figure out that you’re here…

In Tabbris’s case, there was no hesitation at all. They’re all in trouble. We can help them.

“I guess that settles it then,” I announced out loud, trying to smile encouragingly even as my heart tried to beat its way out of my chest at the very idea of what we were about to attempt.

“Unless Gordon has some really convincing argument, we’re doing this.”

“Yeah, you know what?” Isaac announced then. “Call me crazy, but something tells me that Captain Logical isn’t gonna be so logical when it comes to this. It’s just a feeling.”

I didn’t know if he was right or not. Gordon did tend to be logical about everything. But then again, he’d been acting a little differently now and then, whenever the subject of the Seosten conspiracy about Alters came up. Maybe he was like Sands, pissed off that he’d been lied to for so long. Or maybe it was something more than that. I just didn’t know.

But something told me, whatever his deal was, it would come up before this field trip was over.

******

It took some convincing to get our new chameleon-like friend to come with us. We had to convince him that we weren’t just marching him back to Radueriel. Or rather, Tabbris did. She used my voice, carefully telling the man that we weren’t possessed, and we weren’t part of Seosten military. She/I told him we were going to help, but he had to get back to our camp.

So we stopped by to grab the two pantlers that we’d managed to kill, and Roxa and I each dragged one while the others kept their eyes open for anything bad.

Gordon was already standing at the base of the tree when we arrived. Clearly he’d seen us coming and climbed down to meet us. As we approached, the dark-skinned boy stepped out, keeping his voice low and even as he looked straight at our companion. “Who’s this?”

“It’s–” I paused, squinting before looking toward the man. His eyes were darting around constantly, watching for any kind of attack. Any time one of us spoke, he flinched noticeably like he expected to be hit. Or worse. The poor guy was still completely pants-wettingly terrified of us.  

Could you ask him what his name is? I sent inwardly. Anything we’re supposed to call him.

My mouth moved then, as Tabbris spoke through me. Just like when we had been speaking in front of the others aside from Roxa, she spoke slowly and hesitantly, taking a few seconds now and then as if thinking about the right word. She didn’t have to, obviously. But it would be more convincing that it was actually me talking if I wasn’t rattling it off like it was my first language.

Still, after only about a sentence or so into it, Isaac interrupted. “Hey, how do you even know how to speak this gibberish anyway? That something you learned from that Prosser guy too?”

Before I could reply, Gordon actually spoke up. “It’s just Latin,” he announced flatly. “She’s better at it than me, but I can follow some of it, enough words here and there to get the basic gist.”

“Why do they speak La–” Jazz started, then stopped herself. “Never mind, I don’t wanna know.”

Biting my lip, I turned my attention back to the Alter, urging Tabbris to go on. She did, apparently asking the man what his name was as gently as possible, trying not to scare him even more.

His eyes darted back and forth between us. I could tell that he was trying to decide whether giving us that much information was a good idea or not. Finally, he either realized that we weren’t going to do anything bad with it, or figured that we’d hurt him more if he didn’t talk. He started to hesitantly speak, his voice so quiet that I had to lean in closer to hear him better. Which, of course, made him stutter more, head ducking as if I was about to literally eat him.

Jokai, Tabbris announced. He says his name is Jokai. But I think he’s afraid that we’re gonna… um, take his name and use it to find everyone he cares about and… you know, make an example out of them. I tried to tell him that it’s safe, but he’s–um. They’ve been tricked before. That’s kind of the whole Seosten thing. I could hear the disgust in her voice. That’s how they um, how they stop rebellions before they get off the ground. They possess people and infiltrate the slave camps, find out who’s talking about rebelling and… and make examples out of them.

Okay, I was wrong. Apparently I could feel worse about this whole situation. Biting my lip and trying not to sigh too much, I looked back to the others. “His name is Jokai.” For Gordon, I went on to tell him the rest of it, that Jokai came from a slave labor camp, that he had run away and we’d… found him. Then I told him about the conversation we’d had before coming back here.

“So uh, that’s what we’re up to,” I finally finished with a little shrug. “That leaves it up to you. I mean, I’m sure Isaac would stay with you if you guys wanna sit this out. He didn’t want to be by himself, but if you…” Biting my lip, I trailed off and just looked to him. “It’s up to you. In or out?”

Gordon wasn’t looking at me. His eyes were on the trembling Alter, something utterly unreadable on his face. He stayed like that for a few seconds before lifting his chin and exhaling. When he finally spoke, it was obviously through a thick lump in his throat. “In.”

“That’s all of us.” Taking a breath, I turned to look at the Alter, Jokai. Tell him we’re gonna help get his people out of the prison camp. Or try to, at least.

Once more, my lips moved as the Seosten girl took over briefly. There was a short back and forth between ‘me’ and Jokai, and the more ‘I’ said, the more confused he looked. He kept repeating a phrase that I took to essentially mean, ‘what the hell are you talking about?’

Finally, however, he reached out to clutch my arm, all four of his eyes widening as he blurted a single word: sacramentum. His voice was a shaky, desperate plea, as if he was both afraid and ashamed that he was actually starting to believe any of this, but couldn’t help himself.

He’s asking if you promise, Tabbris informed me quietly. Actually, it’s more like he’s asking if you swear that you’re telling the truth, that you’re going to try. It’s an oath.

I relayed that to the others. While Isaac rolled his eyes and Jazz looked uncertain, Gordon was already nodding. “Vero,” he announced after considering his words briefly. “Sacramentum.”

After watching the others briefly, I nodded to our new friend. “Sacramentum. We’ll help your people, Jokai.

“I swear.”  

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25 comments

  1. I smell revolution in the morning! Or, you know, in however many days it takes them to get to that prison camp. 😉 Which should be… well, let’s just say this next little bit should be interesting, shall we? Yes, interesting is a good, safe word, so let’s stick with that.

    Anyhowdy, thank you all very much for reading. If I could steal your attention for just a few more seconds, I would super-appreciate it if you could give a little clicky click right here in order to vote for this story on Top Web Fiction. That would be utterly fantastic.

    And tags for this chapter aaaaaaaaaaare: Felicity Chambers, Flick, Funny – You’re Almost At The Same Time In Your School Career That Your Mother said ‘Maybe Fuck Crossroads’, Gidget, Gordon Kuhn, Isaac Acosta, Jazz Rhodes, Jokai, Roxa Pittman, Sands, Sorry Flick – Gordon’s Deal Can’t Come Up Before The Field Trip Is Over – That Was LAST Arc., Tabbris

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Huh, Issac can actually sound pretty reasonable at times.

    Roxa has his number.

    “So what, you wanna take him prisoner? Or did you want to do something else, Isaac, something a little more permanent than that, maybe?”

    Yes, yes he does Roxa.

    Roxa said:

    “Let me make one thing perfectly clear to you. I would risk my life to give one person one minute of freedom. And then I’d do it again for another minute. And again for another minute. I would put my life on the line every second, every minute, every hour of every single goddamn day if it gave one of these innocent people the freedom that they deserve for as long as I managed to survive. So, you wanna know if I’d really risk my life to save them right now? Fuck yes.”

    She’s channeling Joselyn. Dear god I love that girl.

    Sands spoke before Roxa or I could. “You expected a monster.” Stepping over, she gave the Alter a brief look before focusing on the girl herself. “Because that’s what we’re supposed to do, right? We’re supposed to slay monsters and demons. That’s what we grew up learning about. That’s what they told us, that we were the last line of defense against some unrelenting horde of evil creatures, that we were going to save the innocents. We were supposed to be heroes.”

    She took a step back, giving a slightly bitter smile as her head shook slowly. “Well, you know what? I’m pretty sure that being a hero is about doing the right thing.” Her eyes flicked toward Isaac. “No matter how dangerous it is.” Then she looked to Jazz. “No matter how hard it is.”

    Sands attacks Jazz’s worldview!
    Sands uses Let’s Be Real Heroes!
    It’s Super Effective!
    A critical hit!

    Before I could reply, Gordon actually spoke up. “It’s just Latin,” he announced flatly. “She’s better at it than me, but I can follow some of it, enough words here and there to get the basic gist.”

    Of COURSE Gordon knows a bit of Latin.

    Issac must not have expected Gordon to go for this.

    Does anyone know how to quote sections of the chapter?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Issac must not have expected Gordon to go for this.

      He did.

      “Yeah, you know what?” Isaac announced then. “Call me crazy, but something tells me that Captain Logical isn’t gonna be so logical when it comes to this. It’s just a feeling.”

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Does anyone know how to quote sections of the chapter?

      To quote specific things (like I just did right there), put (blockquote)text to quote(/blockquote), only use > and < instead of ) and ( Reversed it so that it wouldn't just make them disappear thinking it was coding.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. >Roxa’s retort was sharp as her eyes blazed at that. “So what, you wanna take him prisoner? Or did you want to do something else, Isaac, something a little more permanent than that, maybe?”

    Ohhh, she’s good at reading him, I think.

    >the boy quickly replied while shaking his head. “I’m not some bloodthirsty monster,

    That throne of lies must be rather comfortable for you, eh Isaac?

    >What if they sent a bunch of these… people out to all these different areas with some sob story to trick us into going where they can grab us, just because they know that you guys think they’re innocent?”

    Unless he’s one of the universe’s greater thespians, the level of sheer terror he’s showing is quite genuine Imo.

    >They’ve been tricked before. That’s kind of the whole Seosten thing. I could hear the disgust in her voice. That’s how they um, how they stop rebellions before they get off the ground. They possess people and infiltrate the slave camps, find out who’s talking about rebelling and… and make examples out of them.

    …Okay. I’m reluctantly calling that effective suppression tactics. Disgusting, but effective.

    >After watching the others briefly, I nodded to our new friend. “Sacramentum. We’ll help your people, Jokai.
    “I swear.”

    And thus begins Flick and co.’s involvement in a rebellion. Joselyn would be proud of Flick, I think. Heh.

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  4. It took me a little while to recognize what going to free a bunch of slaves must mean to Gordon. There’s a good chance he was thinking of his dad when he talked around that lump in his throat.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Link to what? A WoG? I’m talking about what we know from Gordon’s interlude, his dad is an Alter slave at Eden’s Garden.

        Investigations 25-01

        Where does Eden’s Garden keep their enslaved Hrimthurs? Because one of them is my father, and I will burn both of these goddamn schools to the ground if that’s what it takes to free him.

        Like

  5. Okay, seriously? Isaac is the one being irrational here.
    The group’s on a foreign planet, they know nothing about the technology, geography, culture(s) or settlements, plus only two people in their group have a (shaky) grasp of the local language… How do they expect to get off of that planet without any (local) allies? Furthermore, even IF they find a settlement, how do they get in there and talk to people without raising hell just by their appearance? Spaceships (capable of interstellar traveling, no less) are not growing on trees. (Would be some INTERESTING trees, though.)
    Considering all this, attacking a prison camp with unsuspecting guards seems like a fairly safe option, actually. Not to mention that they have a way to check each and every prisoner for possession. Therefore, the chances of getting backstabbed are fairly low, too. Isaac excepted, of course.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Actually, as far as Issac knows Flick is somehow fully fluent.

      She’s not actually fluent at all … but Tabbris is a native Old Seosten speaker with a hell of a lot of information in general.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Not really. Isaac is presumably waiting for either Gaia and co. to find and rescue them or, more likely, the group to get found by the Seosten in a way that lets him be captured uninjured and let the Seosten know he’s on their side. Getting involved in a rebellion or whatever runs the risk of getting caught up in a chaotic fight and hurt or killed by guards he’s far less likely to have the opportunity to talk round.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Tabbris getting a vote was a shockingly emotional moment. That little girl needs autonomy and hugs in a big way and damn if Roxa isn’t providing.

    Also, if I were the Seosten and I needed to wrangle this justice-devoted group, this is 100% the kind of thing I’d try. The true existence of slave labor camps and runaways who genuinely need help is not mutually exclusive with the whole thing being a Seosten trap.

    Especially because the Seosten have shown extensive body modification capabilities. I don’t believe for a moment they don’t have every slave chipped with a GPS tracker. That kind of thing is so within their capabilities as to be casual for them. There’s no way they don’t know exactly where Jokai is right now.

    Like

    1. We’ve seen body modding from Radueriel … who is a 3k+ year old evil scientist. Pegging Seosten SOP what he can do is like pegging Crossroads SOP to what Gaia and Wyatt together can do.

      And the Seosten don’t know what planet Flick and co are on, which is one of the many things that must have Radueriel screaming CHAMBERS!!!! in private.

      Like

  7. Isaac is acting what I like to call, ‘shortsighted evil’. I mean, he makes a good point, but only if you ignore the big picture. The way I see it:

    1. They will have to make contact of some sort with the Seosten to get home. Sure, Gaia might be able to rescue them, but that seems like a silly thing to count on. She is not omnipotent.
    2. They can use liberated slaves as a distraction. A thousand freed slaves means a thousand things for the Seosten to pursue other than Isaac.
    3. If he’s lucky, this is Isaac’s chance to pick up the possession power, allowing him to effectively hide inside anyone pursuing him. With patience, this could let him sneak his way home without help. Or he could try to start a new life as one of the Seosten overlords.

    There are lots of good reasons for a selfish jerk to go along with freeing the slaves. Isaac is just too shortsighted to see them.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I dunno,
    Rad’s whole “Can teleport any number of troops to the location of any single soldier, and teleport himself in the same way” mechanic makes me view an assault on a Seosten prison camp as an activity with a 99.9% probability of leading to facing off with Rad and a hundred or so of his best and brightest Alterborgs. Not to mention whatever security forces are already in the camp.

    Then there’s the logistics of the thing. Let’s say against all odds, Team Stranded succeeds and frees a thousand or so slaves. What are they supposed to DO with them? It’s likely these slaves were born into slavery, so the chances of them having skills which could help keep them all fed and concealed are close to nil. The tactics Team Stranded have been utilizing to meet those needs aren’t viable on a grand scale.

    I guess I fail the Hero Test, because as unspeakably detestable as I find the practice of slavery, I’m not willing to shoulder a much more likely than not-level risk of ending up some bodysnatcher’s favorite combat exoskeleton for the next several centuries (or even millennia, if they use my body to kill an Alter with life-extension powers). Not for strangers that I don’t believe I can keep free of the Seosten for any meaningful length of time.

    Rousing as it was, I disagree with Roxa’s speech PROFOUNDLY! Risking my life to provide an enslaved being a single minute of freedom? NO. I will risk it when I can make a MEANINGFUL contribution to the life of an innocent. Getting yourself killed to make a moral point robs all the people you could’ve helped had you been more discerning about the risks you chose to take.

    Right now, Team Stranded are like fighter pilots who were forced to eject over enemy territory, during time of war. Just as such a pilot isn’t expected to settle in and establish a resistance movement against the enemy, Team Stranded haring off to free a bunch of slaves onto the surface of a Seosten-controlled planet makes little sense.

    In the short-term, it’s heartbreaking to turn one’s back on a multitude of innocent sentient beings who are going through the same sort of horrors as prisoners in the Nazi death camps. Yet it’s better to survive to one day cut the head from the serpent responsible for these atrocities in the long-term.

    Yes, I’m creeped out to find myself agreeing with the Isaac-character.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Solid point. Bearing in mind that I’m pretty sure I’m the token evil commentor, I can still see two good, pragmatic, reasons to try to free the slaves.

      First reason is to try to steal whatever transport is in the camp. As is, Team Stranded is just waiting to get captured by a patrol looking for escaped slaves. While they don’t have to free the slaves while they do this, it still requires them to take all the same risks.

      Second reason is to use the escaped slaves as a distraction. A slave rebellion might not be something that Rad immediately thinks Team Stranded is behind, so he may not react at all. Either way, once the slaves scatter, that creates a lot of false trails for Rad to follow. Sure, most of them will be recaptured, but at least some might escape, including our heroes.

      The question is whether or not the attempt is worth the risk, and Team Stranded doesn’t have the information to assess that. The smart next step would be to have Flick scout the camp by doing some stealthy Body Surfing (or have Tabbris mind-rape a couple isolated guards). After they know the details, then it would be time to decide whether to play hero or not.

      Roxa’s speech… I also disagreed with, for rather similar reasons. That’s just part of the story, though. My only real criticism of Cerulean’s writing is that he tries too hard to make sympathetic characters “good”.

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  9. …words cannot describe how bad of an idea this is. Like, this is completely, 100% ridiculous.

    Flick doesn’t even ask for more information from Jokai before making the decision, either.

    Look, when you’re impossibly deep in enemy territory, being hunted by an entire army, the very last thing you want to do is draw attention to yourself. The ONLY reason they are still free is because they are hidden.

    So trying to start an uprising at a slave camp is going to immediately reveal their location to the Seosten. Who will then proceed to drop an army on top of them. And it’s not like the slave camp is anything important; the Seosten could wipe it out without hesitation if they wanted to.

    And trying to start an uprising is itself a long shot at best. Those slaves are fucking terrified. Jokai begged for death, because he feared being used as an experiment or meat puppet. And he was the guy who had worked up the courage to run away in the first place. Frankly, under these conditions, I’d be very surprised if the slaves decided to rebel at all.

    And if they succeed? What the hell are they going to do then? The Seosten have an army, and air dominance, and even warships in space. The slaves have no means of running anywhere the Seosten can’t easily eradicate them. Trying to get them to rebel is basically going to get them all killed.

    Flick knows that she needs time–time for her allies back on Earth to come up with a way to get them back. Staying hidden buys them time. Going balls to the wall rebellion against an army with complete control of the air and space is just asking to get fucking crushed.

    It’s fine and dandy to have ideals, but being pragmatic is necessary for survival. Flick has no end goal, no plan, no means of combating an army or enemy aircraft or spacecraft, no means of getting off the planet, etc. This whole plan is stupid.

    But I’m sure it’s going to all work out anyway, somehow, even though it should, by all rights, end Red Wedding style–with selfish, idealistic stupidity resulting in utter disaster.

    I mean, it’d be one thing if they decided to go through with this plan once they found out that, say, the Seosten are starting to close in on them (such as, say, them encountering a patrol of Seosten soldiers and having to take them out with an ambush). That would make sense–you’re desperate, and so you make a desperate move. Making a desperate move when your’e already safe is just…

    Like

    1. You know, you MIGHT want to stop making rant posts about issues that are very promptly addressed?

      Or that are pretty obvious?

      They need a way off planet. A labor camp MUST have some means of exporting finished goods. Which means starships and a way onto them. Which are things Flick knows are stealable because she knows from Vanessa that Haiden and Larissa pulled it off.

      Liked by 1 person

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