A new entry in the Omicron Matter, Building a Coalition Revisited. Jason McNeill and Neville Carter-Frasier have been assigned to work with the Molocots and their assistants. Jason has been angry at Neville since the attack on Smith’s house. Neville’s behavior and his attack seemed more than worthy of a grudge. But Neville has changed and the list of people and groups who distrust humans grows with each visit. Jason tries to come to grips with his anger.
Neville really has changed. He was a bit of a git in University. He was part of the group that harassed Jason. When Smith collared Neville, Winifred and Findley debased Neville. But he has been decent since he was away from Winifred and Findley. Jason cannot deny that. So who does the grudge serve?
I am having a little difficulty getting the next section started. It is a jump in time and space and I need to decide where the scene will go. It is started but I am having difficulty getting it moving in a good direction. I am sure the log jam will break but it is frustrating. Fortunately, I have a good size backlog so I should be able to get there should be no breaks.
Thanks for your support. Look for more on Friday.
Jason grunted as he and Neville Carter-Frasier worked the heavy Omicron storage cube into place. Jason would never be as strong as John O’Malley, let alone Millicent or John Smith. But, Charles’ training regimen was working some wonders and apparently his nanotechnology was now taking “suggestions” from Charles. He heard Neville yelp as the storage cube slipped, “Watch it chap. I had a hand there.”Jason made a fraction of a smile, but eased the cube back up. Carter-Frasier rose flexing his hand and scowling, “I get that you don’t like me. But try not to take it out on the equipment. At least think of our customer’s good will.”
Jason stared at the Molocot a few meters away who was watching them work as well as their four assistants. The Molocot stared back, sneered and pressed a button on his hand console. Two of the assistants groaned and bent over. Jason turned back to Carter-Frasier and hissed, “I don’t care much for our customers.” Jason called over a Hoon assistant who had not be shocked and pointed to the cube and said, “Bolt this in place. When you’re done, you and Brawen will work with me to wire this to the ring assembly. Pairre and Feidlimid will work with Neville to wire the console to ring assembly.”
The Hoon; his name was Connla; bowed almost to the floor saying, “Thank you, Mr. McNeill. Thank you Mr. Carter-Frasier. I hope we will serve you well.”
Jason eyed the Molocot and then said, “You and Brawen do good work. I like working with you. Now please get up before…I do something to cause you pain.” Connla scrambled away and started talking to the others.
Jason motioned to Carter-Frasier to follow and they headed outside the huge hanger. Jason stretched his back and shoulders and then rested on a rail and stared at the park across the street. Children of all species were in a circle playing a game with their attendant. His anger eased as he watched the game in action. Carter-Frasier rested beside him. Jason said, “I need fresh air.”
Carter-Frasier turned around, leaning his back on the rail and looked up at the huge ornate hanger. He said, “Blame the Molocots, not Pairre, Feidlimid, Connla or Brawen. They don’t have a choice.”
Jason said through clenched teeth, “Oh I understand. Carter-Frasier. Believe me, I blame the Molocots. That bastard charged Pairre and Feidlimid just to show he could.”
Jason heard a hard breath and then, “Winifred and Findley did that to Simone when Edward or I weren’t submissive enough.”
Jason said, “You seemed to adapt.”
Carter-Frasier snapped, “You’ve made your contempt of me clear. But I’ve made my peace to Miss Woodson. I’ve sent my note to Miss Campbell. Mrs Richards, Felicity, even has tea with me now. They have every right to loathe me. I hope they will change their minds. You are far less entitled. I owe you an apology for acting like a git at University. Nothing more.” He paused for a moment and then pointed to the hanger, “Those beings in that hanger will do anything not to be hurt and anything for a bit of relief. That was me, McNeill.” He said more hoarsely, “That was me. Until you can prove you can do better with those collars, I suggest you keep your disdain to yourself.”
Jason could see Carter-Frasier’s hands shaking on the rail. Neville pushed himself up and said, “I am leaving. I need to find a coffee or tea.”
Jason said, “Carter-Frasier…Neville, wait. Stay… please…stay.”
Neville looked at him with narrow eyes. Jason pinched his brow and then turned to face the circle of children. They were twirling to some music. He said, “University was a hard four years for me.”
Neville said evenly, “I had my part in that. I had certain ideas that…well Rachael and John have spent months showing me how stupid those ideas are.” He smirked a little and said, “Frankly I owe John O’Malley a bigger apology than I do to you.”
Jason looked back at him and said, “John has said as much. But he and Rachael led the search for Winifred, Findley and Alfred because of you. I think John might have ripped off Winifred’s other hand if he had caught her.”
The children stopped the twirling and started singing a song. The collection of voices and tones had pleasing harmony.
Neville rested back on the rail, “I …owe them a great deal. I was not a pleasant person before Smith. And Winifred and Findley spent weeks convincing me I was worthless.” He paused listening to the singing group. Then said, “It was the two from Stepney that convinced this Mayfair toff that he had worth.”
After another moment of silence, Jason nodded at the group, “Amazing isn’t it.” The song finished and the children squealed as a new game started. “They don’t care. They don’t see differences. What happened to us? When did we start caring about the differences? Maybe we really are as bad as the Guild says.”
Neville said, “Oh I’m not so sure anymore. Given a chance and a bit of help, some of us can learn the differences aren’t all that big or important anymore.”