The Omicron Matter – A Short Story – Making Bail

The last entry in the short story – Making Bail  Millicent and Abu Silverbeam review the bail bill and figure out suitable punishments. Silverbeam is less than pleased – the two humans who started the fight were not favorites which means he will be paying out a large sum to anyone who picked them. John Smith is feeling pleased because he should be getting that large sum.

Author’s note

This is the last entry for this short story. Monday we will return to the main story.  It was a fun thing to write even if it didn’t move the story forward. And I am pleased Millicent’s crew held their own with the locals.

Thanks for your support and look for more on Monday.

Paying the Bill

At the desk, a Hoon in a dark uniform with insignias and chevrons on his arms looked up, “They are all waiting for you. Big group. They took up most of the brig.” He looked at Greeneyes and said, “I got half the bet right. Heard your niece, Giggledust was in the party. Had to pick her. But nobody would have guessed the humans.”
Smith smiled thinly, “One rarely can. I have found that out the hard way.”
Millicent stared at Silverbeam, “Your security bets on fights?!”
Silverbeam shrugged, “It was a big event. I am gracious employer. As long as they don’t influence the fight, their credit is good.” He nodded to the desk sergeant, “Show us the bill.”
Millicent looked at the bail bond with Silverbeam and shook her head. At the top of the list was Neville Carter-Frasier. She pointed to the name and turned to Smith saying, “He is yours.”
Smith shrugged, “Do you mind covering the expense?” He grinned thinly at Silverbeam saying, “I am sure I can pay it back after I collect my winnings.”
Millicent bit her tongue and forwarded the credits to the security office. Silverbeam paid his crew’s portion. He eyed Greeneyes from the side and said, “It seems your niece is fitting in nicely. She and Bloodbone were quite the pair last night.”
Greeneyes looked forward stiffly, “She and Bloodbone will be cleaning exhaust ports, sir. Separate exhaust ports.” Silverbeam scanned the list and then groaned, “Good. Her choice of targets cost me a bundle.” He handed the list back to the sergeant and leaned close to Greeneyes and hissed, “Those exhaust ports better shine enough for me to comb my hair if she hopes to make up for this.” He nodded to the sergeant, “Send the mob out.” The sergeant chuckled as he pressed a button saying, “The captains are here. Both groups have been bailed out. Send them out.”
The groups came from the back intermixed. Michael had one arm in a sling and the other around Felicity. Felicity was talking to a Tymbrimi with bright blue hair. John was between a Kaum Legit and a Menanggung and all three were gesturing wildly over some conversation that involved the dualistic nature of energy. Eleanor, Jason, and two Hoons were helping Rachael out. Simone followed talking to another pair of Tymbrimi. She was holding an ice pack to her eye. Surveying the lot, both groups were about equally damaged. The crowd came to a halt in front of Silverbeam, Smith and Millicent. All three captains had suitable scowls at this point. Neville came forward and stood before Smith, “I…I started it. They insulted Felicity…Mrs. Richards and I got carried away.” Felicity came up quickly to Millicent and said, “They were horribly rude to poor Neville and…and words were exchanged…and…”
Millicent almost shook as she spoke, “I am appalled. You could have ignored the comments. You weren’t trapped. You could have found another bar. This just promotes the idea that you’re mindless barbarians. You simply didn’t have to …”
At this point Rachael rolled up in her chair, “Beggin your pardon ma’am. But I disagree. It was something we were required to do.” She waved at the groups ”…these people don’t have the measure of us…or didn’t.” She held up a thumb, “Now they know we’re loyal.” She held up a finger, “They know we won’t just roll over,” and a second finger, ”They know we fight to win.” There were some hoots and cheers from both groups until scowls from Liam and Greeneyes silenced them. Rachael shrugged, “I’ve got a good idea what my future looks like. God knows Da’ had me cleaning the shop more than a few times growing up. But I ain’t going to say I was wrong.”
Millicent turned to Liam who was staring straight ahead and asked, “Did any of that make sense to you?”
Liam kept his eyes focused on the far wall and said, “All of it – perfect sense.”
Millicent waved her hands and shouted, “Fine. Back to the ship. The lot of you. When you aren’t working your shifts, you will be cleaning the ship. Those that are able will be getting double training sessions with me.” That elicited groans from her crew. She smiled thinly and waved at Silverbeam’s crew, “Too many of them are standing. Apparently I need to stop holding back.”
Jason put his hand up weakly and asked, “You were holding back?”
Millicent grinned at him, “You get to be first for asking that question.”
Silverbeam eyed her oddly until Smith came up to him and said, “Here is my chit for the pool.”
Silverbeam looked at the ticket and paled. Then he consulted his wrist for data and said, “Gods unfortunate. The payout is over 300 to 1 for those two. How could you know? How did you…”
Smith turned and headed out the door following Neville Carter-Frasier, “I take credit or trade…your choice.”


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