Five months into her training, Solona was on her way to the top of her class.  She was ahead in most areas and on track to become an engineer.  In fact, she was going to be visiting a cruiser the next day to get acquainted with some of the systems on board.

But she couldn't think about that right now.  She was currently engaged in a training scenario with a few dozen other trainees.  She burst from cover and shot two of the targets before rolling to the other side of the hallway.  The other two members of her team peeked from cover and she waved them on.  After she looked away, she rolled her eyes.  They had only shot three targets apiece; she was at twenty six.

They advanced into the next room, Solona on point.  She swept her gun to the left where she thought she saw movement.  Damn, friendly she thought.  No sooner had the thought entered her mind than she felt a concussive shot hit her in the back.  She was now out.  She sat on the ground with her back against a wall.  Her teammates were on their own now.  They didn't last long either.


"Trainee Vyrnnus, step forward," said the instructor.  She did and he continued, "What happened out there?  Why were you ahead of your squad?"

"They weren't keeping up, sir," said Solona.  She wasn't going to be the only one to get yelled at for this.

"Irrelevant.  If someone falls behind, everyone slows to their pace.  We are a team.  We move as a team.  We fight as a team.  Is that understood, trainee Vyrnnus?" replied the instructor.

"Yes, sir," said Solona.


Solona saluted and left for the cafeteria.  She got her food and then found an empty table.  She was used to eating alone at this point.  One of the new arrivals at the training program was continuously glancing up at her from his table.  He finally picked up his tray and came over to sit down across from her.

"Hi, I'm Arkadios Sol.  What brings someone from Carthaan here to Parthia?" he said.  No one had talked to her about that since she had arrived.

Her normal cool composure began to fade as she said, "My family was killed when Carthaan was raided.  I was sent here so I wouldn't have to think about it during training.  I..." She couldn't continue.

"Oh... um... Sorry to bring that up... I didn't know..." said Arkadios.

Sol's omnitool beeped and she looked at it before saying, "I need to go.  I've got training on a cruiser.  Have to get up early."  She left before he could reply.  She almost made it to her quarters before breaking down.

The End

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