Eyrie Productions, Unlimited
Jun-27-04, 09:51 PM (EDT)|
"Well, fair's fair..."|
LAST EDITED ON 06-27-04 AT 09:52 PM (EDT)|
I yanked one teaser out from under you, the least I can do is replace it.
I stood at the end of the Prince of Thebes' cargo ramp and
checked my gear. Everything was right where it'd been when I checked
it the minute before. I was as ready as I was ever going to be.
I turned to the person next to me and asked, "Are you sure you
want to do this?"
Thanks to my radio headset, so I didn't have to yell, though
the plane's cargo cabin was full of the roar of wind and the drone of
engines. The person I was speaking to had a headset too, but she
didn't answer me verbally; she just tugged one of the straps of her
harness a little tighter, then gave me a huge, gleeful grin, her teeth
glinting scarlet in the red glow of the get-ready light.
Not for anything like the first time, I remarked to myself
that my recently-acquired apprentice was a strange, strange girl, and
one who bore close watching. Fearlessness is handy, but it can get a
person into a world of trouble.
I've done a lot of things in my life that weren't legal, but
today I was breaking new ground. If taking a minor into a potential
combat situation is reckless endangerment - and it is - I don't even
want to think about what getting her there by jumping out of an
I sighed to myself and turned to look out and down. Silly,
really. I couldn't see my target; A, by the time it would be visible
from this doorway, I'd better not be standing in it, and B, there was
nothing to see out there but the night.
Hitting a small island in the middle of a big ocean from a
moving airplane is a tricky business. If your drop aircraft is
off-course by just a little bit, or you jump at the wrong time, you
miss the land and wind up in the water.
Nothing I could do about either of those factors, though. I'd
just have to trust Zoner to get me to the right spot, and then it'd be
my turn to do the rest.
The light above the door turned green and, for a moment, I
didn't have time to think any more.
"Let's go," I said to Sakura, and then I stepped into the
night. Suddenly it was very quiet indeed.
As I plummeted toward - I hoped - Santo Tobogi Island, I still
didn't have time for a lot of rumination. While the wind snapped at
my clothes and the glowing dial of the altimeter on my wrist wound
down, I only had one stray thought:
How did I get into this again?
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