Time to Choose
Episode 1: Hell is a four letter word
Location: Prison - Outdoor Grounds
Tana Moonpool, the woman who had introduced herself to Taam Sor'el as a friend only a few days earlier once again stepped out from the larger prison complex and into the gated courtyard. Her long fingers tucked a cigarette into her lips as she began walking across the courtyard to him, a smile blossoming. "Hi there, stranger," she said warmly. "Care for a smoke?"
"Of course." Taam nodded, if nothing else he needed to find out what this woman's game was, ~Wonder if I cut her if she'd bleed green...~
She reached into a pocket and withdrew a cigarette for him. She pulled the light-tab, igniting it, and handed it to him. "Let's walk. I have some...information...you may be interested in."
"Do tell." He replied, walking alongside her and waiting for her to reveal her information, ~She's way too convenient.~
Tana kept her eyes on her feet as they slowly marched their way forward on their walk. "I've recently become aware that there are a small number of prisoners who are in the middle of an escape."
"Really?" Taam asked, showing a great facsimile of genuine shock, though he figured Gray would try and get them out of there somehow, ~Kinda wish he had told me something.~ "And here you are ready to attempt one of your own."
"I've been here a lot longer than you have. I've had time to make more friends than you," she said with a shrug. " These friends of mine are ready to take advantage of a good thing, and were kind enough to invite me along. I just wanted to pay it forward. And like I said before, I could really use someone with your skills."
"And which skill exactly are those?" Taam asked, if she knew about his intel past, she was definitely a plant.
Tana stopped walking, turning to Taam and placing a hand on his shoulder. "Why do I get the feeling that you don't exactly trust me?"
"Don't take it personally, old habits." Taam smiled, "Old teacher told me to be very careful with trust, it's a powerful weapon." ~Actually, the Queen taught me not to trust anybody outside of our own, but that's a story for another time.~ "Anyway, you mentioned a child..."
"He is not my child," she explained, "but I am responsible for -- " her words cut off suddenly as she turned about in place. "--him." She finished. Her brow furrowed. "The guards are gone."
Her words were truly spoken. The guards that had once been so dutifully watching them from the perimeter of the yard were now suddenly nowhere to be seen. Instead, from the doors that separated the prison from the meager exercise yard, a group of several prisoners emerged. There were five of them of various sizes and races, with their unkind eyes all on Taam. Having found their target, they wasted no time in marching toward him.
Knowing the guards were gone, en masse no less, led him to one conclusion, ~Gary.~ He smiled slightly, turning to Tana, "Friends of yours?"
"So this is the famous Taam Sor'el?" the lead gang member, a brute of a Nuasicaan, laughed at him. "You don't look so tough to me."
Another of the gang, a human, thrust his chin at Tana. "You're sure it's him?"
Tana avoided Taam's gaze as she gave a small nod.
The Nausicaan punched his fist into his open palm. "Time to collect our money."
"Don't think I know you, friend." Taam replied with a laugh, this fool had no idea who he was up against, "And I don't think you want to know me. So why don't you go find your way out of here while you can still do it without pallbearers?"
The Human of the gang focused his glare on Tana. "He don't look none too drugged to me, Tana."
She stepped away, doing her best to put distance between herself and both groups. "I found him for you. If you want him drugged, you'll have to do it yourself," she said. Her gaze flittered on Taam. "I'm sorry, Taam. I didn't have any choice."
"Yeah, you did." Taam sighed sadly, "And you made the wrong one. Hope you like it here, because this is where they're going to bury you." Focusing back on the gang, "Last chance, idiots, only one I have a personal problem with is her. You can all walk away. Whatever you've been offered by whoever isn't worth your lives."
The Human narrowed his eyes. "Thanks, but I think we'll take our chances," he said. He gestured for his allies to move on Taam, stepping forward himself as he did so.
Tana continued backing away. Although Taam certainly seemed confident about taking them on, she didn't see how it could be possible. Certainly not five of them. Certainly not a Nausicaan.
They were just about on him when the ground began to shake. Violently.
The prisoners were rocked about, staggering for the their footing even while the final tremors subsided.
Suddenly Liselle was there at Taam's side, having beamed down from the shuttle. "Looks like Gary's bomb was a success," she said. She placed a hand on Taam's arm. "We need to go."
Liselle didn't know Taam's training, didn't know where he came from, otherwise she'd have known he could take them without breaking much of a sweat. That being said, he wasn't going to risk Liselle's life to prove that point, "Fine." He shrugged, walking away with her, "You should remember this woman on your birthdays, gentlemen, she's the reason you'll have another."
Qwyyn pressed her thumb into something small in the palm of her hand. A communicator. "Computer," she said. "Two to beam --"
"Wait!" Tana cried. "Taam, please. Don't leave me here. Not with them! I didn't -- I swear to you I didn't have a choice. I was going to tell you. I swear. Please! I'm begging you!"
It was clear to Liselle that the two of them had some kind of history together. She was certain that whatever it was involved a little too much nuance than she had time to hear explained. And so she said to Taam, "Is she with us or not?"
"Before or after I was forced to kill all of them?" Taam snarled; wanting so badly to leave her behind to those animals, ~Too many questions I'll never get the answers to if I do. Damn it...~ "Okay, you can come, but first thing's first. You mentioned a child, where's the kid?"
The look of sheer relief that washed over Tana was so plainly written on her face that Liselle nearly asked her if she was going to be okay. For her part, Tana reasserted herself, getting down to business. "She's being held in another cell block. But, it's on the other side of the prison..."
"That's alright," Liselle assured her. "We've got a ship in orbit. We'll use the transporter to get her out. Speaking of which..." She eyed the gang of prisoners that were even now screwing up their courage to start surrounding them. She tapped the communicator once again. "Computer *three* to beam up."