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Science Fiction Thriller Drama

Some things are greater than life. A single action can be more powerful than a thousand words. What we are doing is greater than life itself, and if we win, the world will never be the same.


Since the beginning of our journey, you have been my loyal follower, and I would trust you to hold my beating heart. If anything were to happen to me, I wish for you to take my place and lead our people towards victory.


I will always love you, my beautiful flower.


Merculio



Rosetta read the note repeatedly, her tears slowly soaking the words while she wept over his grave. She could still feel his blood on her hands when she carried his lifeless body back to their camp.

Her mind was tormented by the wails she heard while walking the body to their church. She heard sadness almost every day in the life that she lived, but this was enough to tear her soul apart, but she could not allow that to be. It was now her duty to sit upon the broken throne and find a way to restore its beauty.


It wasn’t supposed to be like this, never ever was it supposed to be like this! It was all their fault; the Molova had acted with no mercy, pouring more blood into a battle they started on their own. By the time Rosetta had sent out a search squad, there was nothing but mutilated bodies for them to find, just adding more and more bodies to the pile of unjustified genocide.


Rosetta wanted nothing more than to spend the rest of her day wasting away at Merculio’s grave, but her new crown allowed no such time for grief. Her name was being called more than ever before, being asked questions she didn’t have answers to. It was days until she could answer the most prominent question of them all.


“What is our next move, Mrs. Rosetta?”


“We return the favour.”


“You don’t mean taking down the Molova leader, do you? Merculio never had us be violent in vain before.” Tilla—her new second in command—retorted, leaning in closer to Rosetta. “Must we throw away his dedication to an honourable fight just because you are too trigger happy?”


“I am to lead the Barbakans to victory, and that is what I intend to do. Are you questioning my motives?” Rosetta pushed back, her fists scrunched up in fury.


“I’m questioning your decision. Going lethal at this point in the fight may destroy us and damage our cause.”


“Do you really believe we can win by playing nice? They threw the first strike, and it’s about time we got up and fought back. Make them pray for mercy for all the sins that have committed against us.”


“I still believe for this to be the wrong move, but if Merculio trusted you to lead on, then so do I.” Tilla crossed her arms and huffed while looking down at the territory map, her expression only softening in the slightest. Rosetta didn’t dare to express it, but a weight lifted off her shoulders after hearing those words. “How shall we even plan an attack? Our clan lacks the physical abilities they have. We could never outdo them in a contact fight.”


“We fight to our strengths, use the technology they stole from us against them.” Rosetta pointed to a flight camp just north of the Barbakan and Molova border. She placed a scroll of paper down next to the map and unrolled it for Tilla to see. “I’ve had scouts sent out to infiltrate their northern headquarters, and our translators have discovered that their leader is currently hiding in that base.”


“The northern base?” Tilla squealed, taking the translated document to read the language she was still struggling to learn. “Our technology is nowhere capable enough to overcome the walls of that base. It would be a suicide mission to even attempt it. We have lost too many lives already. We cannot spare anymore lives.”


“We shall not see the light on their faces; I would never be stupid enough to pull such a stunt,” Rosetta muttered, feeling slightly hurt from Tilla’s accusation. “Within a couple days, their leader and his inner council will be leaving for their central base in the southern region. For them so cross, they must fly over our base to avoid the mountains’ high winds.”


“You want to take down their plan while they are in our skies?” Tilla traced the flight patterns with a finger, going from the north Molova camp to the central one. A slight smile appeared in her lips once she tapped her fingers over the tiny speck that represented the Barbakans single base. “What can we do while they are there?”


Rosetta reached under the table and pulled out a small device that looked quite generic compared to a variety of technology the Barbakans had invented. “This is a radio-activated electrical shocker, it connects with the generators on the plane, including the emergency alternator. Once they are within our range, all our surveillance teams have to do is activate it, and their plan will lose all power.”


“Then they won’t have enough time to get the power back on, not enough time to avoid hitting the ground.” Tilla stared off for a moment, her mind stuck in a place of complementation. “How will we get the shockers on the generators? The planes are locked up in the base; we still have no way of infiltrating.”


“That’s what we believed,” Rosetta smirked, grabbing the document stolen from the Molova base and reading the notes from her scouts.” Sixty yards west of the back entrance is a warehouse hidden by Ivy and stone. On the east side is a back door concealed with a passcode; our analytic receiver revealed the combination to be 875116. Two guards stay in the rotation, but only guard the front entrance. Within the building are multiple helicopters and a single large-sized aircraft. Three camera’s located but easily avoided.”

Tilla’s snatched the document back, her nails catching Rosetta’s hand and causing her to hiss, but Tilla was too distracted to care. She read it over and over as if she didn’t believe it. Rosetta rolled her eyes and got herself a bandaid while Tilla took in the truth.


“How can they be this stupid? Leave something so vulnerable out to the open eye. Did they really think the Ivy was going to stop us from finding it?”


“All of that doesn’t matter! This is our window of opportunity. This is how we make them pay. They started this war to steal our technology, so we shall use our technology to end it.” Rosetta looked Tilla dead in the eye and leaned in close. “Are you ready to do with me?”


Tilla looked down while taking a deep breath, scaring Rosetta until she finally looked up and nodded. “I will be by your side. When will we make our first move?”


“Tonight we sent out the scouts with a team of engineers, then tomorrow we have them reconfigure the radio tower to pick up on the shockers signal. From there, we wait for the flight to take place.” Tilla nodded before joining Rosetta at her side to assign the tasks.


“What will happen if this succeeds?” Tilla asked, her voice now not seeming as sure of herself.


“When this succeeds, our world will never be the same again.”


September 06, 2020 22:41

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56 comments

Sue Marsh
20:59 Sep 16, 2020

Lynn, this was a really well thought out and written story. Grief is a good motivator to commit genocide and the character of Rosetta is a prime example. If you have the time would you please read Cold is Cold But This Is Ridiculous, please leave a comment. Thank you, Sue

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Yvonne Barker
21:29 Sep 15, 2020

I think she's acting through grief otherwise she wouldn't also be willing to commit Genoside. But oh to have a radio-activated electrical shocker - though for fun not destruction!

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Lynn Penny
15:40 Sep 16, 2020

I was hoping to highlight the effect of grief on moral decision making. Also I love my radio activated electrical shocker, I was shoving words together and hoping they sounded scientific!

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Kate Enoch
02:20 Sep 09, 2020

I loved the story!

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Doubra Akika
09:56 Sep 08, 2020

Hey Lynn! This was amazing! The way you started it was fantastic. When I read the intro, I knew I had to read to the end. And I’m glad I did. Your story was so well organized and easy to picture. The tension is so well-built. I’m honestly looking forward to maybe a sequel? Few suggestions... Three camera’s located but easily avoided.” I’m not sure there should be an apostrophe Tilla’s snatched the document back Same thing with this “Are you ready to do with me?” I think there’s a word missing. Anyway Lynn, fantastic job as a...

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Lynn Penny
19:31 Sep 09, 2020

Thank you! I’d love to check out your work!

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Doubra Akika
20:04 Sep 09, 2020

My pleasure and thanks as well!

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Kristin Neubauer
16:53 Sep 07, 2020

I loved this! You developed the tension between Rosetta and Tilla so well....I feel like they can go either way - turn into fierce enemies or the best of friends. It sounds like there will be another installment coming?

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Jonathan Blaauw
14:10 Sep 07, 2020

Huh, what a cool story! And a brilliant take on the prompt. It kind of reminds me of the story of Hannibal’s famous victory at Cannae or any one of Spartacus’ triumphs – same idea of succeeding in battle not by brute force but by clever tactics. And your bad guys in this sound a lot like the Roman’s to me. I think that’s why I enjoyed this so much. That, and the fact that it’s as beautifully written and as well structured as your other stories. Starting with the letter gives it some nice emotional punch and using the same words in the closin...

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Lynn Penny
21:52 Sep 07, 2020

Thank you so much! Reading comments like yours makes my day. I love getting editing suggestions, editing is my weakness and most likely my downfall when it comes to writing.

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Jonathan Blaauw
14:13 Sep 08, 2020

Ah, but there you’re wrong, I’m afraid. You’re a writer, so all you gotta do is write. Editing is someone else’s problem. Good thing, too, cause it’s very boring. Self-editing is almost self-defeating – didn’t Einstein say “You can’t solve a problem with the same logic with which it was created.”? So, if anything, pure writing without worrying about editing will be your… what’s the opposite of downfall? Upfall? Upbringing? Uprising? You get what I mean though (I hope) 🧜‍♀️

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