The Captain: Jason II
”Tempest?” I gasped. I couldn't believe it. How? Why? “But, I thought... You-”
”Yeah we all did.” Cayden Tirrg grunted as he punched one of the uniformed men square in the jaw. He bent down to pick up the downed man's gun, “Here,” he said as he handed it to me. “Take it and shoot any of them that come near you.”
I looked at him with a raised eyebrow before I eyed the machine gun in my hand. Could I? I've never shot any kind of gun before. “But I-” I started, but then Cayden cut me off, he grabbed my wrist and pulled me behind him as we climbed some stairs, rushing amongst the mayhem to find an exit.
It was a relief to see that the stripes, or military, had arrived. They were rushing people out while combatting the shrinking number of Tempest pawns.
Just as we were about to head out of the war zone, I heard Cayden cry out in pain. “Ahh!” he growled, bringing his hand to his left bicep. I saw the blood begin to run down his arm, he'd been grazed by a bullet. Mouth agape, I turned around. There he was, the goon who had just shot my life-saver, and he was getting ready to fire again. My adrenaline must have been sky rocketing because without even thinking, I aimed the gun away from me and straight at his chest. I braced myself and gripped the heavy piece of metal tight. I pulled the trigger.
I totally was not prepared for that. I yelped as the gun repeatedly pushed back into my chest. That was going to leave a huge bruise. I let go of the trigger and watched as my target hit the floor, followed by the gun I was holding. I didn't really know how to feel, and I didn't really get a chance to because Cayden had grabbed my arm again and was once more dragging me behind him as we escaped. “Good shot.” I heard him say as my ears rang.
Finally we were out of the mess. Amber lights surrounded the whole stadium as stripes sprinted into the fray, and the terrified audience sprinted out of it. The crowed was enormous, loud and rough, with their cries rivalling the sounds of the sirens and gunshots. I looked to Cayden as he hissed, clutching his shoulder once more. I shivered as I looked at the blood. Thank the gods that idiot was a terrible shot. That bullet could have killed him. Or me.
I took a second to admire the man. He was even more impressive here, than in any photo or news report. I blushed. He was wearing a washed out tank top that exposed his bulging, hairy chest, massive arms, and the bottom part of the shirt had been ripped off so even his abs were on display. His shoulders each had three slashes tattooed on the side, and they kind of reminded me of tiger stripes. His large hands were gloved, and his forearms were wrapped with bandages. The pants he wore were kind of like chaps, and I found myself thankful he had been modest and worn something underneath, otherwise I probably would've fainted. His boots were black and shiny and added about an inch and a half to his already huge, 6 foot-and-a-bit frame. I probably only measured up to his mouth.
Suddenly, the crowd started to panic more than they already were. I looked around to see them pointing, yelling, staring wide-eyed at the stadium. I looked over and felt a tremble as the huge ship that had crashed through the wall, and dumped out all those Tempest had lifted off and was speeding away towards the sky. “Looks like the stripes pushed 'em back.” I heard Cayden say. We stood quiet as we watched the shrinking shuttle rocket off into the night sky.
I shook my head and remembered that I hadn't yet thanked him for saving me. I took a step forward, “Thank you... Not just for catching me, but for getting me out of there. If it wasn't for you I'd probably be dead.” He looked at me with a raised brow.
He smiled, “And thank you for taking that guy out.” He turned to face me before taking his now bloody hand from his bicep and held it out to me to shake. “Cayden Tirrg.”
I hesitated and looked at the red mess on his hand and then at his wound. He seemed to realize why I wasn't reaching out to take it, and he awkwardly laughed before returning it to his arm. I smiled, “I'm Jason. Jason Hawk.” I looked at his red stained arm, “Doesn't it... hurt?” Stupid question I know, but he didn't seem to be rushing to any aide or anything.
”It's not that bad.” he said. Doesn't really answer my question but whatever. “Listen, Jason. You should get home. I gotta get back to my ship and get this sewn up. Did you come with anyone?” He asked with concern.
I looked down and shook my head, when a wave of sudden inspiration hit me. I looked up at him, “Take me with you.” I exclaimed. He raised his eyebrows.
”Are you hurt? You look fine.” he said, obviously not understanding what I meant.
I huffed, “That's not what I meant.” I swallowed, “I know your'e going to go after Tempest now, and I want to go with you.” I was surprised at how forward I was being with him. I think it was due to the recent trauma.
He looked stern for a second, “I admire your... spirit, but I don't think you realize what you're asking.” He looked over me and took a breath. I knew what he was thinking. I'm too small or not strong enough or whatever. He paused. I could tell he was thinking of a way to let me off easy without hurting my feelings, but I wasn't taking no for an answer.
”Please!” I cried before looking away from him. “I don't have anything here. Not since Tempest killed my parents.” I felt my eyes start to water.
The captain looked at me with, either pity or understanding, I'll take the last one and said “You should sit down...” he started, moving away towards a bench.
“No!” I yelled, “I just want... I just want to do... something. I haven't done anything with my life... And... I think this may be my only chance...” Looking back on it, I'm sure I looked pathetic. “Please? I want to help."
He didn't say anything as he looked at me. He stayed silent for a while before he finally made a noise. He sighed, “I understand how you feel, believe me.” He paced closer to me, “But it sounds like you're just looking for revenge.” I gulped as he crept closer, “And if that's what it is...” He paused, “Follow me.”
I jolted my head up as he started to walk away. Did he just say yes? “Really? You- you're letting me come?” I stuttered in disbelief.
He suddenly stopped and turned around to face me, “I'm not taking you along for some 'joy-ride', Jason. If you wan't on my ship and a place amongst my crew, you're gonna have to pull your own weight. And I don't think I need to warn you about what it's gonna be like when I do, finally find Tempest again. It's not going to be pretty, and you could get hurt.” I tried to look serious, “Still want to come along?”
I raised my chin. “I don't want to 'come along', I just want to help.”
He smiled, “Good.” he grunted before turning again, marching through the plaza. It took some effort to keep up with him. “Know anything about engines?”
Uh, what? “Um...”
”Have a trade?”
”Well not really...”
He stopped and turned to me again, “Can you fight?” My silence was his answer. “Have you ever shot a gun before tonight?” Nope. “Cook at all?” I remained quiet. He huffed before he turned and started moving again. “We'll find something for you to do...”
Half embarrassed because of my apparent lack of skills, and half incredibly excited because Cayden agreed to take me with him, I rushed behind him, a stupid grin glued to my face.
Cayden was able amongst all the chaos to find a taxi to take us to the docking bay hangar, and by the time we got there, I realized how glad I was that everything that I needed from my apartment was in my pouch. Well everything but my clothes and my knife. Those assholes. I thought back to the two Tempest goons that had ruined the concert for me. Oh well, If I ever meet them again, I'll have a bigger knife and quicker reflexes.
We stopped when we came to a huge metal door. A keypad rose up from the ground on a pole as we approached. Cayden entered in a code and with a quick “snap” and a “hiss”, the doors slid open and my eyes widened. There it was, the famous “Hurricane”, the ship that Cayden Tirrg captained. I had only seen it once before in real life. The day Cayden and his crew delivered Valak Oman to the chairman. But I'd seen it many times before in pictures. It was massive. Sleek. A real muscle car of the skies.
”Yep, she's a beaut.” the captain gloated while he too admired the red and white accented airship. I could only nod in agreement.
I watched as he clicked the metal triangular emblem that hung around his neck. Almost instantly after, a platform attached to three poles slowly lowered itself to the ground. Cayden walked up to it and stood, waving his hand for me to follow. I stood beside him as the round platform raised up with a hiss. I was in.
Wow. It was just as impressive on the inside. Cayden stepped off the elevator and onto the hard iron floor, his footprints were loud as he walked off, toward who could only be three members of his crew. They looked like they had been watching the news of the attack on a holo. I saw the newscaster's face disappear after the tall, shirtless one swiped it away. Not knowing what to do, I looked around. It had an industrial look to it, and if you ask me it suits Cayden perfectly. There were many pipes along the ceilings, and on some of the walls. And a few terminals with holo-screens which were on standby. Nervously, I paced forward. I had only heard of and seen pictures of Hurricane's crew, and each of it's members was just as impressive as their captain.
I stopped a few feet behind Cayden, who was talking with the men that had yet to acknowledge me. He explained to them about what had happened at the concert, while one of them ran off to find some supplies to treat Cayden's arm. I looked past them to what had to be the cockpit. It was a bullet shape, and the entire front was made of big, glass facets, which made even the interior of the hangar look cool. The tall captain's chair sat in front of it, with a terminal on it's right side. A barred-rail separated the empty space between the floor and the glass, with stairs leading down on each side o the two other chairs a few meters beside Cayden to whatever was below.
The man who went to get the bandages and whatnot for Cayden had returned with a kit, He looked at me questionably before smiling and getting to work on his captain. I faintly smiled back as he proceeded to rub some kind of liquid over the cut, followed by stitches. I had to look away.
”Hey Tirrg, who's the kid?” I heard one of them finally ask. I looked back to the group, trying hard not to look at Cayden's arm.
Cayden leaned against a pipe and looked back at me with a smile, motioning for me to come over with a tilt of his head. “This is Jason Hawk. Saved him from a nasty fall, and he saved me right back from a second bullet. He's gonna be joining us here on the ship.” I felt uncomfortable as the three of them eyed me suspiciously before they exchanged glances of doubt between one another. Cayden noticed this I think, “Don't really know what we'll do with him, but I'm sure we'll whip him into quite the sailor.” I fidgeted awkwardly. “Jason, this is Torbul, Tai, and Uric” he said, motioning to each of them as he called their names. “You'll meet the rest of the lot sooner or later.”
First there was Torbul, who Cayden said was his first mate and I could tell right away was a real hot-head, and not because of his red hair, or his sharp, pointy eyebrows. He had a thick red and blue band tied around his head and it made his spiky hair stand up like a candle. He had a necklace with some kind of metal symbol on the end of it, and fur-lined blue vest that was open so I got a great view of his hard-muscled arms and chest. For his legs, he wore some orange shorts that cut off just past his knees and some stylish sneakers. He wasn't as tall as Cayden, and his eyes looked like a dark blue. I don't know how I managed to wander up and shake his hand. The “Hello” I uttered also sounded more like a croak. He looked at me with an icy stare as he bone-crushingly took my hand. Ow.
Next there was Tai, who looked very stoic and was a bit taller than Cayden. I could tell right away was from Ordash. He was incredibly sexy and his thick, dark eyebrows were't doing anything to keep my knees from going out. He was shirtless with nothing on but some loose, white pants and he had some interesting flame designs tattooed on his shoulders. Like the captain, he also had his forearms wrapped in bandages. He was a bit leaner than Torbul, but still had incredible definition. Unlike Torbul, he actually said “Hello” when I greeted him and shook my hand. He looked right into my eyes. Like he was trying to hypnotize me or something. I started to feel uncomfortable and turned away.
Finally there was the doctor, Uric, that was now wrapping a bandage around Cayden's arm. He looked to be about the same height as Cayden but he was much leaner. He also was incredibly dreamy. Smooth dark skin, a killer smile and a strong jaw. His hair was black and short, and he was more clothed than the others unfortunately. He was wearing medical gloves, which had become bloody, and had rolled up the sleeves of his collard shirt which was just unbuttoned enough down the front for me to see his smooth chest. The shirt was tucked into his dark pants, which were also inside of his knee high boots. “I'd shake, but I got captain blood all over me. Nice to meet you, Jason.” He said to me with a grin.
”Thanks,” I offered back as he finished wrapping Cayden's arm. Cayden told him his thanks before gently rubbing his hand over the bandages.
”Uric pulled off the gloves with a snap, “I live for sewing you up, Cap'n.” He said with a hint of sarcasm as he moved across the room with his kit, “If you'll excuse me, I'll go get rid of the rubbers and wash up.” He said before grinning at me with a nod as he walked off towards a large, circular door that slid away as he approached. It made a snapping sound when it closed.
Cayden got up from leaning on the big metal pipe, “Is the rest of the crew on board?” He asked, turning to Torbul.
“Just Machotta, but he's asleep. Fozz, and Ollins went out to party a while ago. Said they were goin' to a bar. Stone left too, but who knows what the fuck he's doin'.” Torbul replied.
”Wan't me to call them?” Tai offered, arms folded across his chest.
Cayden shook his head, “Nah, nothing we can do about Tempest tonight. I'm sure they already know.” He turned to me, “Kitch isn't here, but you'll be roomin' with him, Jason. C'mon, I'll show you.” he said before turning and walking past me.
A roommate? Wonderful. The last time I shared a room it was with 6 other kids in a centre for orphans. I ran away from that place, but I was in to position to argue with the captain. I nodded at Torbul and Tai and followed close behind Cayden.
He took me down the halls of the ship, past the kitchen, rec. room, and some of the quarters of the other crew mates I had yet to meet. The ship really was huge, and Cayden promised to give me an in depth tour tomorrow. The halls were plated with metal and pipes just like the bridge, and they felt cool and smelled like iron.
”Here it is.” Cayden said as he stopped in front of a metal door with a button pad to the side of it. Cayden pressed a button and the door slid to the side, revealing the room. Cayden gave me an “after you” gesture and waited until I was inside to follow me. The door hissed has it closed and the captain turned on the lights.
The light was dim and the room was a lot nicer than my dusty old apartment, even if there were clothes and things thrown all over. My roommate's doing no doubt. It was about the same size as my apartment, with a messy double bed on the left hand side, and a set of bunk beds that were serving as clothes rack on the right. The overall colour of the room was burgundy, which I didn't mind.
The sight didn't even seem to phase Cayden, who went over to the bottom bunk and swept what was on it to the floor, revealing the bed sheets to be a brownish colour. I couldn't help but chuckle as he motioned for me to come sit next to him. Thankfully, the bed was soft. He turned to me as he leaned forward, hands gripping his knees. “Wish I could give you your own room, but these bunks are the only things vacant.” he told me.
”Its fine,” I replied looking around again, “It's much nicer than my place.” I looked back at him with a grin. I just hope 'Kitch' isn't a dick, I thought.
It's like Cayden knew just what I was feeling again, “And don't worry about Kitch, he's a bit of a spitfire and apparently a little messy, but once you get to know him I bet you'll get a long just fine.” He cleared this throat, “He's one of our mechanics, the other is Ryk, or 'Stone' as we call him.”
I smiled and hoped that Cayden just wasn't saying that to ease my worrying, when I remembered something I was meaning to ask him. “Uh, Cayden? What were you doing at Prestigo's concert?” He raised his eyebrow at me. “It's just... you don't seem like the type of person who would be into that sort of thing. Did you know that Tempest was going to attack?” I asked him.
He smirked and let out a laugh, “Funny you should ask,” he began, “No, I didn't know Tempest was gonna hit it, but I was actually there with an old flame who's obsessed with him” He looked at the floor.
I suddenly felt that asking him that was a bad idea, as his lack of arm-candy could mean that they had been victimized by Tempest. “Oh uh, I'm sorry-” he cut me off.
”Don't worry. The night went south long before Tempest arrived. Reminded me why we broke it off in the first place,” he said with a laugh, “He got out though.” He sighed as he leaned back on the bed, resting himself on locked elbows. “I should have recognized those soldiers...” he said with an agitated tone, “When we raided an abandoned Tempest warehouse a few years ago, there were a few of those suits left behind, hadn't seen them before. Didn't think much of it either, as Tempest rarely used human soldiers. I didn't recognize what they were until it was too late.” With big brown eyes he looked at me, “I'm sorry for what happened to you.” He said with a pause, causing me to shift on the bed, “I saw what was going on with some of them in the crowds... before they started attacking...”
I shut my eyes. I really didn't want to talk about that right now, it was really embarrassing and made me feel sick to think about. “Thanks,” I cut him off, “Thanks...” I whispered as I gently rubbed my knee, as I always do when I'm anxious. I suddenly then realized that Cayden had used 'he' when he talked about his date. He was gay? I suddenly became even more nervous, causing me to bounce my knee as I rubbed it. I was at a loss for words, the idea that I may actually have the slightest chance with Cayden scared me more than excite me. But this was something I'd have to get over if I was going to live on this ship with him, and quick.
He eyeballed my shaking knee before sitting back up, “Anything you need from your apartment? We'll be in the capitol another day before we take off, I gotta have a chat with the chairman. I can have one of the boys take you to pick up what you need. We gotta speeder or two in the cargo bay.”
I finally looked at him again and swallowed before I smiled, “Yeah... um, just some clothes I guess."
He smiled back before grunting and patting my thigh and taking to stand, sending shivers through my whole body as I ceased the rubbing and shaking of my knee. “Well you should probably try to sleep, been through a lot tonight and I bet you're beat.” he said, “Top or bottom?” He asked while bending to pick up the clothes he had swiped to the floor.
”Bottom” I instantly replied, before blushing at the realization of the double meaning behind the question, even though I really doubt that was his intention. He smiled as he set the clothes in a heap upon the top bunk.
He proceeded to walk out of the room until he quickly turned around again, “Oh! And bathrooms and showers are down the hall to the right.” he said before turning back around, pressing the button on the wall to the right of it. The door slid open.
Just as he was about to walk out, I called to him, “Cayden?” my voice said with a squeak. He turned to face me, lifting his arms to clutch the top of the door frame as he did so, exposing his wonderful, dark underarms. I gulped, “I just want to say thanks... again for everything tonight. Especially for letting me on board and everything. I hope...” I paused, “I hope that I don't disappoint you.” I said while turning to look up at him.
Cayden grinned and gave a small chuckle, “You're welcome.” he said before letting go of the door frame and turning to walk through it, “Now get some rest, we'll talk in the morning.” And with a hiss and snap of the door, I was alone.