Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 19:17:36 GMT -5
It had been a long flight to Tsuminar, one that did not allow much in the way of recuperation, but the commands of Stamaria's High Command were absolute, and even Gillian Arvestus of the Order of the Blade was no exception. When they called for Michael Saint's deployment to one of Tsuminar's many military fortresses, he had no choice but to come at once.
That was how one Lord Commander Daloan of the Knights of Stamaria found himself waiting for the Knight-Commander's presence in his office. He had gotten word that the leader of the Order's Hospitallers had arrived and would appear before him shortly. As the older knight waited, his eyes drifted over the report sitting neatly at this desk in well-furnished chamber. He knew that this might not go over well with the Order, but he had his commands from High Command as well, and he would see them through.
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 19:31:15 GMT -5
I don't know why they want you in Tsuminar, Michael. But even I cannot fight them on this. The Empire has need of your services, do what you always do, sir Knight. I trust I shall soon again have the pleasure of your delightful company in this dreary hall.
Michael glanced once more at the sheet of paper that his friend had sent him, shaking his head. "Why would the regular military want me here?"
All he truly knew of the situation was that he had been ordered to report to a Lord Commander Daloan at this particular fortress. The flight had been long and grueling, and his wounds were still fresh from Teradia. Yet he strode along at a brisk pace, dressed in his formal attire rather than pre-combat gear. He didn't think they would want to send him into combat so soon after being wounded.
He knocked lightly on the door of Daloan's office, ready to enter and come to attention as soon as Daloan allowed.
Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 19:34:53 GMT -5
"Come in," came the voice of the base's commander upon the knock. He looked up as Saint entered, and smiled. "Welcome, Knight-Commander," he greeted, standing up to shake the man's hand. "I'm sorry for the short notice on your summons--I heard you had taken wounds on your last mission, but I was under orders to have you come here."
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 19:40:58 GMT -5
Michael saluted briefly, and then shook Daloan's hand firmly. "I serve the Empire." He stated lightly, hiding a small grimace as he strained one of his hidden bandages. "My orders were a little light on details, however. Perhaps you can shed some light as to why I have been summoned?"
Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 19:52:39 GMT -5
Daloan nodded and gestured for him to follow him. He gathered up a few papers, including the report he was examining before Saint's arrival. "There is a great deal of secrecy behind this assignment," the Lord Commander admitted. He opened the door to leave, gesturing for Saint to follow him. "Given the recent surge in suspected Korin activity, and the unfortunate events that occurred in Minervum and the Rakutan Forest back in Allondell, High Command desires to see more results and new methods to bring our war with the Korin to a close."
He handed Saint one of the papers he gathered, about a number of projects that had been commissioned of the many research teams and think tanks inhabiting the technological capitol of the world.
"To that end, there is a new program who has recently produced its first successful graduate," Daloan said. "High Command wants her trained further by the best of the best. And despite the incident with the Order of the Blade's previous grandmasters, Knight-Commander, they are still considered among the elite in warfare, and she is to be transferred into your unit to receive this training. If she succeeds as High Command desires, the following successes will follow suit."
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 20:00:30 GMT -5
"Lord Commander," Michael began as he fell into step behind the high-ranking officer. "While I am honored on behalf of the Order at such a compliment to our fighting prowess, I am the head of the Hospitaller sub-division. While combat is of course part of our purview, we have several other duties as well. Each seen as equally important."
"The Hospitallers have some of the finest blades in the Order, it is true. But I would think for a new combatant, the Order Templars would be a much better proving ground. Do you know why High Command has deemed it necessary to send this graduate to my unit, rather than to Knight-Commander Lightshield?"
He kept silent about his thoughts regarding what sort of "program" this unknown graduate had come from. He held no illusions as to what Stamaria was capable of. But to voice his concerns about the project itself would do no good.
Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 20:14:57 GMT -5
"As I understand it, she will eventually undergo training from all the divisions of the Order, Knight-Commander," Daloan remarked. "But as I was told, Knight-Commander Lightshield is unavailable at this time, so my next best choice would be to have her report to you."
It wasn't long before they arrived at a hanger with a transport waiting for the two of them, and Daloan quickly boarded it. "At least, that's all I could get out of High Command myself. They have their reasons, I'm sure. Myself... I know that your Order has its own rules and regulations for those who join, but this does not seem to be negotiable. This Ms. Somarie is to be assigned to your unit."
He handed another paper to Saint, this time one with an attached image of the woman in question, as well as a list of qualifications and training she had. Much of the information, including her background and origins, had been redacted. "We'll be headed to the facility to pick her up now."
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 20:18:34 GMT -5
Michael accepted the reasoning for the woman being sent to his unit with a simple nod of his head. He quickly clambered into the transport after the Lord Commander. He noted with distaste that the woman was mostly a mystery, much of her file being redacted.
"As she will be in my unit, and presumably part of the Order, if I understand your meaning. That means she will be under my command, correct?" He questioned. "Or is she to receive a special rank?"
Last Edit: Oct 24, 2011 20:41:56 GMT -5 by Steinerman
Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 20:34:14 GMT -5
"That's correct," Daloan said with a nod. "She'll be assigned a composite rank upon her insertion to the chain of command, and she is to report directly to you during your missions, or the other Knight-Commanders and the Grandmaster when you are not available, as the situation warrants."
As the hanger doors opened, the transport departed beside the airfield. Among the sights as the vehicle turned onto the road was the presence of a Red Dragon that appeared to be undergoing training of some sort. Lord Daloan paid it no mind.
The drive to their destination did not take long as they returned to the capitol city of Tsuminar--instead of going to its heartland, though, they traveled to an unusual facility on the city's borders, yet still at its richest height in the metropolis layer. The multi-story structure had a sleek, metallic and angular appearance to it, with the various floors to it widening as it got closer to the street level.
"We're here," Daloan told his companion. The door to the transport was opened for the two commanders so they could exit it. "While High Command would much rather this place stay a secret, Knight-Commander, let me be the first to welcome you to Tsuminar's Super Soldier Training and Development Institution."
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 20:44:13 GMT -5
"Super-soldier." Michael repeated hesitantly. "This young girl, barely more than a child, is a super-soldier?" He questioned, not wanting to believe that they'd turned a sixteen-year-old girl into a killing machine.
He shook his head sadly, "The things we do to win wars."
Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 21:19:45 GMT -5
"That is the world the Korin have created for us," Daloan said gravely. "That is the world we live in, and as Stamarians, we must do what we must to stop them."
The two made their way up the steps, and after showing the guards there their identification, they were allowed into the Institution. They were taken to a specific meeting chamber with a long table high in the facility, where they were met by a Tsuminarian man clad in the light blue lab coat of his field. The top half of his face was obscured by an advanced head-mounted display, hiding his eyes from them.
He nodded to the two commanders as they entered. "Welcome to the Institution, Lord Commander Daloan, Knight-Commander Saint," he greeted them in a suave voice. "I understand you're here to pick up our greatest success, yes?"
"That's correct, Dr. Zhu," Daloan confirmed.
Dr. Zhu nodded, and looked over his shoulder. "Enter," he ordered.
The door at the end of the room opened briefly, allowing a single young woman clad in a gray-green uniform to enter. As the door closed behind her, the teenager--for there was no mistaking her youthful appearance and short stature to be anything else--stepped forward until she was a slight distance behind the scientist.
The girl raised her fist up to her heart in the typical Stamarian salute. Her pale face was framed by brown hair that descended in thick bangs on each side, going down only to just above her neck. The girl's matching brown eyes looked alert, but guarded--she gave no hint as to her feelings, and her lack of expression combined with her all-too-apparent age left a disturbing image to both commanders. Curiously, the only thing that really stood out on her was the two yellow hair clips on her right bang.
"Pardon me," she said in a soft, clipped voice as she introduced herself. "I have been dispatched from the Human Enhancement Agency's training division. I am Enhanced Soldier Number One, Second Lieutenant Yui Somarie."
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 21:30:26 GMT -5
Michael saluted the young soldier, his expression grave. "By Heaven, Stamaria has truly pushed the limits of what is right." He muttered softly, clearly disturbed by the entire situation.
"Greetings, Second Lieutenant Somarie. I am Knight-Commander Michael Saint of the Order of the Blade, Hospitaller sub-division. I have received orders that you are to join my unit, presumably for further combat-testing."
Rather than asking the doctor if there was anything he needed to know, Michael instead addressed Yui again. "Unless the Lord Commander has need of us, we shall be departing shortly, I imagine. The Empire would seem to want to hurry us along. How soon can you be prepared to leave, Second Lieutenant?"
Last Edit: Oct 24, 2011 21:30:46 GMT -5 by Steinerman
Post by The Rising Dragon on Oct 24, 2011 22:21:42 GMT -5
"It is an honor to serve with you, Knight-Commander," Yui said, her voice still soft and neutral in tone. "I am ready to depart immediately."
Lord Daloan nodded. "We've already loaded your gear onto the transport airship," he told the girl. "I'm sure you're eager to begin your duties as the first completed Super Soldier, so I'll not keep you waiting."
Post by Steinerman on Oct 24, 2011 23:01:35 GMT -5
Michael saluted Daloan, and then turned swiftly, indicating with a wave of his hand that Yui should follow behind him.
Once outside of the meeting room, Michael fell back a few steps so as to walk alongside Yui. He turned his head as he walked, staring contemplatively at the young girl, having to remind himself that she was some form of super-soldier.
"So, Second Lieutenant." He began thoughtfully. "Your file says you are sixteen years old. And yet they say you are some form of super-soldier. How long have you been in this program?"