Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Koreshi Chronicles: Titan's Tale - TN 1916, 36 Summer

The sound of the distant wind grew like a crescendo of whispers. The dull sound of waves on the shore became more brittle, like the sound of slaps. The trees rustled and bent from side to side, solid but flexible, twisting above where the wind held sway, but firm and resolute beneath where the roots held them firm against the onslaught. As the noise of crashing waves and white frothy surf competed with howling winds the image remained a beautiful one. Even in fury, nature brought him serenity.

"Corovan." Another slap snapped his head to the side and brought his attention to the present. "I asked you about the central thermal conduits and how accessible they are." The C.E.F. interrogation officer followed his previous blow with a baton strike to the shins. Corovan cried out. This resistance soldier had been captured while trying to rescue fallen comrades. He could have easily run but didn't.

When the parakommandos overran his position, he fought hand to hand, despite his young age. He stopped two of the elite soldiers before a third delivered a crippling rifle butt strike to his spine. His paralysis was only temporary; somehow there was no severe nerve damage, but the med scan showed three fractured vertebrae. The C.E.F. medics stabilized his condition at the intelligence officer's behest because it was believed that the young fighter could give them valuable intelligence on the tunnels beneath the city which the resistance continued to use and which continued to elude the C.E.F.

They beat him for three weeks. Eventually he was left to rot in a cell when no useful information could be obtained. A season went by, and despite his injuries and his near complete neglect in the C.E.F. prison, he survived. In fact, surveillance showed that he was being fed by other prisoners and that he has somehow managed to rehabilitate himself to some degree: walking in his cell, strengthening atrophied muscles and stretching weak joints.

By late summer 1916, the Terra Novan forces were pushing into the city center. Their forces were meeting heavy resistance at the hands of the parakommandos, but Col. Agrippa needed more time to put into effect her break-out plan. The interrogation unit was ordered to redouble its efforts in uncovering the remaining tunnel systems so that a covert counter-offensive could be planned which would flank the Terra-Novans.

Major Trebinski had identified Corovan as a probable source of intelligence. It was reasoned that the help he had received from others was a testament to respect he had in the resistance and therefore the likely knowledge he had been entrusted with. Moreover, his strength and determination not only to survive but to rehabilitate himself in the most nonconducive of environments spoke of his will and determination. These were the likely reasons no information had been extracted from him a season before. With newly bolstered belief in his intelligence potential and pressed by the need to gain a strategic advantage on the battlefield, Trebinski had been using a variety of techniques for the last four days on the boy, thus far frustratingly to no effect.

Trebinski had broken many a man and woman far faster than this boy, and he once again started to doubt whether or not the tunnel rat had any real intelligence value. At last, on day six, Corovan broke. He detailed, through heaving gasps, the intricate camouflage that protected the central access to the nerve center of the Resistance base, he gave names of lieutenants and detailed booby traps and even natural hazards. He gave information on his friends and comrades in order to stop the pain.

Still, Trebinski had to respect that the boy had endured more than he had believed anyone could and marvelled at the human spirit, both in its capacity to endure but also in its unfaltering resolve to live, because in the end, they all broke. As much as Corovan had shown unrivaled endurance in his interrogation and in his personal rehabilitation, all that mirrored his will to live and ultimately, that was always a subject's undoing.
When Trebinski was summoned to Col. Agrippa’s command bunker, he knew full well he would receive the full report on the success of the parakommando raid on the Resistance's base. He expected congratulations and mentally prepared himself to be modest and feign surprise at the promotion he was sure to be awarded.

Heavy Gear Roleplaying Game


Hermes 72 - Heavy Gear RPG - Most artwork Copyright 2002 Dream Pod 9, Inc.