Crin: Phases of the Moon

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4

I stretched and rolled over. Unfortunately this action dumped me off the bed. I immediately jumped up, my heart racing. I was definitely awake now. I looked around knowing no one was there but still feeling the need to check. Groaning I started getting ready for the day. It was most likely going to be a dull day full of filing reports and typing up safety measures. We only ever got to experiment after we had done lot's of research and gotten it approved. It made yesterday's field trip all the more exciting to know that I would be doing paperwork all week. 

I Hopped out the door and into the narrow streets. I must have been later then I thought, there was usually a couple of people making their way to the cafeteria or factories but the streets were lonely. I nervously tucked my hair behind me ear, a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach. Lateness was not tolerated by the council. I sped up my pace to a brisk jog, eager to get going. I changed my course so I was no longer heading to the cafeteria but straight to the lab. It was eerily quiet; there was usually some sort of noise even if it was just the quiet footsteps of some soldiers running laps.

I ran my hands over my arms, feeling the rough scabs and raised scars from training. I shivered, glad that I only did it part time. As i jogged up to the lab, my shoes slapping down on the pavement, I saw screen flickering on the door. I gave it my thumb to scan and once it made sure I was me a message flicked onto the screen.

Hey, looks like somebody slept in! So I'm guessing you missed the announcement. Theres a community meeting at the center, the council's going to be there! I'll try to cover for you as long as I can. - Keen

Crap. I pulled up the clock on the screen: 9:00. Crap. That means the meeting probably started An hour ago. Oh, Crap.There was no way Keen could cover for me for that long. I started full out sprinting, glad that the Council required that everyone be able to run a six minute mile. I would be able to reach the Center in about ten minutes. There was absolutely no one on the streets but one man who was running in the opposite direction carrying a stack of papers. 

  We didn't acknowledge one another as we passed, both focused on our running. I walked the last stretch to the Center. I didn't want to walk in panting. I approached the huge, white building. A feeling of reverence came over me as I looked up at the statues of past leaders. We were always to revere and respect those who had fought to build our home. I quickly ascended the steps and swung the large, glass door open to let me in. I slipped through halls until I reached a door that would lead into the back of the room. Nervously I opened the door, making sure it didn't slam shut.

I looked out at a crowd of thousands. Not one person had heard or bothered to look back at me. Glad, that everyone was standing I made my way up a small aisle at the side, avoiding curious and disapproving gazes. Most looked straight ahead gratefully. I kept my head down as I winded through the crowd and up to the row of Third commanders, taking my place next to the 3rd commander of military strategy, Gade. He gave me warning look before turning back to the council at the front. I stared forward, trying to concentrate on the words being said by an elderly man.

"Our founding fathers built up these communities in order to form a society of constant progression. So today embrace the past's mottos in order to take a step into the future." He paused, scanning over the audience with his steely gaze. "Today we expand our military to now include air warfare, we will be selecting people to pilot and fight in our newly designed ships that will revolutionize our fighting technique. We are promoting a young man we believe is perfectly suited for starting this new division. He has surpassed all of our expectations, blowing away his teachers and excelling in his previous field of military technique. I present to you: Jon of Koin."

I looked over at Gade with wide eyes, mechanically clapping my hands together. I raised my eyebrows questioningly, wondering if had known. But he shook his, seeming as shocked as me. We turned back to the podium to see a familiar face walking up to speak.

"Thank you, I am honored to take on this challenge and I am humbled to know I will be working with some truly wise men. I have hand selected all of my commanders and soldiers who will be working with me in this exciting new division. All of who will be notified tonight and expected to report to Training Center 5 at 0:700. I will now list my secondary commanders.” Jon withdrew a paper, staring at it silently for a moment before he spoke again.  “Corter of Linn, James of Shen, Brennan of Mid, Don of Jennerson, Bryden of Koin, Shay of Zoh and Gade of Joon.” I heard my jaw drop and looked over to see Gade beaming with pride. It was a very great honor to be promoted to a secondary officer especially at such a young age of a new division.

Jon went on to explain about the duties and privileges of this new division then a council member went up and concluded the meeting; dismissing us to our houses. We all stood as the members of the council left, the first Commanders following. Finally it was my turn to leave and walked side by side with Gade out into the foyer. An older man stood there waiting and he glanced at me with a recognition I did not return. He walked over to us and held out his hand.

“My name is Hain and you must be Erin!” He said, delighted. I was once again in shock. Hain was a member of the council, representing Koin, and he was talking to me?! I swung out my hand woodenly to take his hand; Feeling small in his strong grip.

“Ah, yes sir. I am very grateful to meet you.” I said amazed at this opportunity.

“Yes, yes. And you are Gade! Congratulations on your promotion!” He said, turning to him.

“Thank you, sir.” Gade said reverently also aware of this rare circumstance that we were in.

“I came over here to personally thank you Erin.”

“Thank me?” I was very confused now and felt embarrassed by my ignorance.

“Yes. The gas that your team has produced will truly change the way we fight. Why, being able to destroy the enemy and then inhabit their homes? I am quite impressed with you Erin, quite impressed!” He was waving his arms about to express his enthusiasm for the team’s innovation. I was astonished and quite proud of myself.  A personal thanks from the council? Unbelievable under any circumstance.

“Your achievement has prompted us to place you with your companion in our new division!”

“Wait what?” This time I wasn’t honored but horrified. I was a trained chemist not anywhere near a pilot!

“Yes, yes. You will be reporting along with twenty other lucky individuals who are our new third commanders for air warfare! We will be traveling through space to vanquish our enemies!”His face was serious but excited as he got caught up in his words.

“Yes, it will be glorious.” He said sighing. “But there is much to do. And I expect hard work from all of our soldiers. You will be putting in more hours a day of course, a good fifteen I’m sure. But you might find it very… amusing.” He finished. He winked and with a salute, walked away.

“Well that was unexpected.” Gade said, taking my hand and leading me outside.

“Gade!” I hissed. “I don’t know anything about being a pilot! I’m a chemist!” He shrugged.

“Well neither do I. I don’t think anybody does. That’s why it’s exciting; we’ll all be on the same level and we can surpass everybody else if we work hard.” That was just like Gade. To already be planning to be the best, the hardest worker, the most dedicated to the cause. It was a good quality, something that had helped him get this far and something I lacked.

            We parted and said goodbye, each heading towards our buildings and getting ready to say goodbye to our teams.  I thought of Keen and Mary and our recent successes together. And I had to leave that all behind to join up with a new division that no one-besides the council and Jon- knew anything about. This task would test my eloquence but was something that was required by duty. I would accept this with grace and work hard with Gade to excel in it.

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