I've Got You Under My Skin

I've Got You Under My Skin

January 1, 2184 EC // 7.3.6 SW
10:35/21 SW-CP-Local Time
Sotillo > Mess Hall

Food and corporate espionage were about the only things, it seemed, that Seegson Corp didn't cheap out on. The food wasn't tasteless, but it was still "space food". You could get frozen bags of soups, meats, and sauces and it was good unless the Seegson freezers crapped out on you mid hibernation.

The Sotillo crew sat around, eating, drinking, and smoking at the island table in the galley/mess while Cham's old music played over the intercoms. This time it was some kind of jazzy big band tune.

"So what's next? asked Cham, chomping on re-hydrated fried potatoes.

"Stay here awhile, yeah? Get paid. Maybe weasel our way into the local population." Captain Bolaji replied.

Hel took a hit off of her cigarette, "Your contact working on getting us those access cards or what?"

"Yeah, I'll get on him about it." she paused. "You know he tried to warn me about those crates, I'm sorry, H..."

"Forget it. I'm fine." Hel coughed a little. Her memory of the past few days was still fuzzy.

"You alright?"

"Yeah, just gotta quit these damn things." she waved her cig around.

"You sure?"

"My chest just feels a bit heavy. My ribs are still tender, might have a cold or somethin'. I'm gonna take a shower."

Cham had just put a fry to his mouth and stopped mid bite, watching Hel knock back the rest of her can of Aspen Beer and walk out of the mess to the communal locker room showers.

After she was out of sight, he dropped the fry, it didn't seem appetizing now after she mentioned feeling sick. He looked to the Captain.

"You think that parasite gave her somethin'?" he asked.

Captain Bolaji still had her eye on the door. "I don't know... We'll keep an eye out, maybe when she's done we'll get her back into the Medbay and run some tests.

"Tellin' you man, this was a shit gig from the start."

"Yeah? Let me know when you can find better. After what you did on Tientsin."

"I told you don't bring that shit up. People. Make. Mistakes. I'm still a better pilot drunk than most colonial pilots are sober."

"And that's why I hired you, Cham. So don't give me shit about bad gigs. Beggars can't be choosers, as they say."

"Pssh. Fuck you."

-----

A few minutes later, in the Sotillo showers..

Hel tilted her head up to the shower head, running her hands through her blue dyed hair, the warm water felt nice on her skin but her face felt kind of tingly like when your arm falls asleep. Maybe it was the painkiller. She rubbed her face, squinching her eyes. Then she looked down, examining the gunshot wound and arm laceration. They seemed to be healing very quickly. 'Great. More scars,' she thought.

All at once, there was a throbbing pain in her chest that nearly made her slip. She winced and grabbed at her chest, "Ah fuck." For a moment it felt like her heart was trying to kick out of her chest. Her throat felt raw as if she had been talking over loud noise all day. Then the pain subsided again giving way to the fuzzy numbness again. She rubbed her chest and rolled her shoulders back and forth, stretching. Something... wasn't right. She shook it off and continued showering.

A moment later, another jolt of pain hit her, this time it took her to her knees. Slowly she lowered herself to a sitting position, one hand on her chest. She coughed.

Laying at an angle in the corner of the shower, she began breathing heavily, things were blurry and she was getting very dizzy. The next push forced a strange, involuntary heaving sound out of her so strong it knocked the wind out of her.

"Adi...sa... Adisa!" she managed to get out before the final push hit her. Her senses were muddled but she heard a crunch and splash. Suddenly, her hand was on the wall for support, smearing streaks of crimson down, washed away by the shower stream. She stared at her quaking palms. Hel had never given birth, but she imagined it was something like this. The pain was so primal, but it was all wrong. Now all she saw was red and then Mama said, "Shhh." and turned out the light.

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