ultracosmicrays: (ray/ray just another day)
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Rays!In!Space AU, Part 5

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4



Ray tapped on the keys in front of him, running another sweep. He and Kowalski had been taking turns to monitor the vast emptiness surrounding the ship. So far they'd had a couple of false positives that had turned out to be a garbage pod and a small meteorite, but of the Subura there had been no sign. The sweep was negative, no blips on the monitor. Ray rubbed his eyes, and rolled his neck, letting his head fall backwards. This was not one of his favourite parts of the job – all wound up with tension because the bad guys were getting away mixed in with the boredom of hours doing nothing but running sector scans and watching. So. Much. Watching. He closed his eyes, figuring he'd watch the insides of his eyelids just for a moment or two. Or possibly three.

"Sleeping on the job, Vecchio?" Ray's eyes flew open and he tracked Kowalski to the seat next to him. "I should write you up for that."

"That's 'sleeping on the job, sir,' to you and if there's any writing up to be done it'll be me writing up you for sneaking up on a superior officer."

"Now that depends on your definition of superior, doesn't it?"

Ray scowled. Why did the guy have to have such a smart mouth on him all the time? It only made Ray need to slap him down a peg or two and he was too tired to be delivering his best quality smackdowns.

"I'll be giving you my definition of my foot in your ass if you don't shut your mouth and run a complete sector scan. I'm going to bed. MacDonald should be back up here in a couple of hours, if not you have my full permission to wake him in whatever way you see fit."

Kowalski had already set the scan running by the time Ray got to his feet and stretched out, bones clunking in his spine. Ray made it halfway down the ladder when Kowalski called out,

"Wait."

"This better be good, Kowalski," grumbled Ray, clambering back up the ladder. "Last person who tried to keep me from my bed ended up becoming the newest member of the Asteroid Belt."

"You need to see this."

Ray craned over Kowalski's shoulder, a large mass showed on the screen in front of him.

"That's no garbage pod," said Ray. "How long before we can eyeball?"

"Ten, maybe fifteen. We're heading straight for it."

Ray leaned past Kowalski and opened the Com.

"MacDonald!" he yelled. "Stop dreaming about sex with many-tentacled aliens and get up here now!"

Static. Followed by a sleepy response.

"'m comin'. 'm comin'."

"That we did not need to know," said Kowalski.

Ray couldn't help but grin. He slid back into his seat, staring intently out into the black.

"Where are you, little fishie?" he crooned under his breath.

Neither Ray nor Kowalski moved or spoke in the couple of minutes it took Ian to get to the cockpit. Neither Ray nor Kowalski noticed the surprised look that flitted across Ian's face when they explained they may have the terrorist ship in sight.

"I got it!" Ray followed the line of Kowalski's finger. Straight ahead, a ship looking no bigger than family class. As they got closer, it was clear the ship was in trouble, it spun lazily around like Frannie in her favourite chair.

"That's not right," said Ray, not taking his eyes off it. "That's really, really not right. Ian, hail her."

"I'm not picking up a distress signal," said Ian. "I'm not picking up anything at all."

"MacDonald. Hail her."

"This is COPS Watch 23. Please respond." Pause. Nothing. "This is COPS Watch 23. Please respond." Pause. Nothing. "This is COPS Watch 23. Please be advised that repeated failure to respond will be recorded as a violation of Pan-Solar Code 478K2 and you will be boarded. Repeat, you will be boarded."

Nothing.

By now Riviera was close enough to the unknown ship to see that it had no markings, nothing to check against. Sure, this could be the terrorists but Ray knew flying without official registration was not unusual with nomad families and it seemed like the temperature in the room dropped as he contemplated what they might find on board.

He turned to Ian.

"Match rotations and prepare to dock," he said. "Kowalski, with me."

*

"Well," said Ray, "It's not like I was expecting them to have a doorknocker and a welcome mat, but this is not good."

He was considering resorting to bashing on the hatch and yelling 'Open Sesame!" It couldn't fail any more than anything else they'd tried.

Kowalski smacked his helmet with his glove.

"Duh, I am such a bonehead. Wait there."

"Yeah, sure, Kowalski!" shot Ray at Kowalski's retreating back. "I'll just hang around here using up oxygen while you act all mysterious."

"Works for me," came Kowalski's voice in Ray's ear. Ray could hear the slow, curling smile in his voice. It made him mad. He bashed his hand against the metal door and then shook it in pain, cursing under his breath. Stupid, stupid. He never remembered that the pressure suits weren't as padded as he thought.

He waited. And waited. What the hell was Kowalski up to now anyway? Ray couldn't figure him out at all. He was new to COPS and to the ship. He was supposed to be all wide-eyed and 'whatever you say, sir,' but no, he was confident, a little cocky even, used his own initiative which, Ray grudgingly admitted, was not altogether a bad thing, and worst of all spoke to Ray like they were equals already. Ray considered ways he could show Kowalski exactly who was senior officer round here.

"Get a move on, would you?" he growled to relieve his frustration.

"Genius can't be rushed," returned Kowalski from wherever the hell he was.

Ray groaned and began to bang his helmet off the door and did not stop until Kowalski came back into view. He was grasping a long, thin metal object, curved and clawed at one end.

"A crowbar? You think you're gonna jimmy this thing with a crowbar? You got super strength or something?"

"Watch and learn," said Kowalski, pushing past him.

Ray watched as Kowalski ran his fingers over the left edge of the hatch. He repeated the action twice more and then inserted the crowbar the tiniest fraction at a point just over halfway up. There's no way he's got enough leverage, thought Ray, but Kowalski simply pushed at the curved head, a little grunt the only sign of exertion.

Ray didn't even have time to develop his scorn into a thought before the door popped open. He made a noise that could only have been translated as incredulous.

"Handy hidden release mechanism," said Kowalski. "I've been around a ship or two like this in my time."

"What? When you were developing your breaking and entering skills?" Just what exactly did this guy do before he joined up?

Kowalski shrugged.

"Door's open, Vecchio. I broke. You enter."






Part 6

(no subject)

Date: 2007-08-09 08:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nos4a2no9.livejournal.com
Oooh, I don't have much to say about this bit since I'm too busy gripping the edge of my seat and waiting to see what's up with this mystery ship. I did notice a few more issues with grammar (and a couple points of dialogue/pacing that could stand a quick fix) but on the whole...I just want more!

(no subject)

Date: 2007-08-09 09:31 pm (UTC)
catwalksalone: happy grey cat surrounded by flowers (ray ray smile)
From: [personal profile] catwalksalone
Fix me! And also yay! *twirls you*

(no subject)

Date: 2007-08-09 10:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] thehousekeeper.livejournal.com
This is honestly my favourite series I've read, ever. I don't even know. It's just the awesome.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-08-09 11:28 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ultracosmicrays.livejournal.com
Oh, thank you! *hugs* That's such a good thing to hear.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-08-13 06:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] spuffyduds.livejournal.com
Love the ending line, particularly.

(no subject)

Date: 2007-08-13 07:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ultracosmicrays.livejournal.com
Thank you! *beams*

(no subject)

Date: 2007-11-22 11:23 am (UTC)
ext_10634: (dS | chicago pd)
From: [identity profile] snoopypez.livejournal.com
"MacDonald!" he yelled. "Stop dreaming about sex with many-tentacled aliens and get up here now!"

Static. Followed by a sleepy response.

"'m comin'. 'm comin'."

"That we did not need to know," said Kowalski.


So wrong. And yet, so funny.

I heart the ending line too. :D

(no subject)

Date: 2007-11-22 07:17 pm (UTC)

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