Excerpt From Story – Chapter 5 (Part 3)

The final part of this chapter. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m having some issues with it and was looking for some feedback. If any one wants to read more of this story, let me know and I’ll post it.

     Klaw walked down the desolate, dusty road toward a rickety-looking shack. The smell of old Chappalan blood permeated the air around him as he neared the building. He was sure it was Laga’s blood. He had heard about the beating he received from his old friend and the fact that he had been hung from the roof of that old bar. He shook his head and smirked at the thought of Laga hanging there. Served him right for being caught like that. No doubt it was a message though, meaning he was getting closer. Klaw laughed under his breath. Like he was afraid. He was surprised that their path’s hadn’t crossed yet, but he knew they soon would and this time it would be different.
     His reminisces ended as he set foot on the porch of the old shack. The wooden planks gave way a bit and creaked loudly, no doubt giving the impression that he was here. Klaw heard a rustling inside and then an all too familiar voice.
     “Go away or I’ll shoot!”
     Klaw stopped, grinned maniacally and paused; not making a single sound.
     “I know you’re out there,” Laga continued. “I swear I’ll blast you without another warning.”
     “Is that how you treat all of Emperor Zapato’s agents, Garo Laga?” Klaw asked. “ You would do well to put your gun down.“
     “Klaw?” Laga asked as he stuck his head slowly out the door.
     “Here’s a hint,” Klaw replied.
     With swift reflexes, Klaw drove his fist hard into Laga’s face, breaking his nose on contact. Blood and mucus flowed freely from Laga’s nose as he hit the floor hard with a thunderous crash. As Klaw stood over him with his fist still clenched, Laga whimpered and felt the swollen mass that was his nose. With fear in his eyes, Laga began scooting back as Klaw walked slowly into the shack. Klaw grabbed Laga by his tunic collar and lifted him off the ground, held him for a few seconds, then threw him hard into a dilapidated chair. Laga whimpered again and looked up at Klaw in abject terror.
     “W-w-why are you doing this?” Laga asked as he trembled.
     Klaw looked down on him with an insane gleam in his eyes.
     “You are a inexcusable piece of vermin,” he told the frightened Chappalan as he hovered over him. “You let Starfleet know we have been in this area. Almost gave away where I’ve been.” He stopped for a second and glared hard into Laga’s eyes. “Or did you give it away?”
     “No I didn’t,” Laga screamed. “I swear I didn’t!”
     “You should die for this treachery,” Klaw said as he reached for his gun.
     “No, please,” Laga begged with a whimper. “I wouldn’t.”
     For a long time, Klaw held the gun, pointing it right at Laga’s face. He had thought about it, ending this misbegotten failure’s life. He sighed and pulled the gun back and placed it back on his belt.
     “I have need of you, Garo Laga,” he told him. “I want your undying loyalty or I will change my mind without hesitation.”
     Laga nodded as he wiped the away the mess on his face.
     “Good,” Klaw replied. “Don’t make me regret this.”
     Klaw tossed Laga a small wrist comm, which Laga promptly put on. They both pushed a small button and were teleported from the old shack to a massive warship that was hovering above the planet. Klaw sent Laga to the infirmary and then headed to the bridge where he ordered a course set for Krenox.
     As the ship changed course, he walked out of the bridge and back into the corridor. He walked for a few lonesome minutes until he found a certain empty chamber that he had prepared. He entered, locked the sliding door, and sat down in a non-descript chair and began to think. He knew Emperor Zapato was fanatical about the sword and had spent most of the last twenty star years looking for it. Krenox was now more or less a wasteland. Most of its inhabitants were enslaved or killed. He knew a small rebel force existed on the planet, but the Centrattians had never been able to stop them altogether. Most of the damage they had caused was minimal, so he was sure they didn’t have the sword, or they would have used it.
     Another thing Klaw figured might be a problem was the rumored existence of the Dark Elders. It was said that they were there when the sword was created. He knew that if there were one or two of them alive, they would have to be ancient. Klaw slowly rose from his seat and looked out a small view-screen and watched the stars as they passed by. He knew what he had to do first; find a Dark Elder, if they existed, and see what they knew about the sword. If he managed to possess the sword, he might hold some leverage on both Zapato and Shongol. The buzzer to the door went off, alerting him that someone was outside it. He turned around and pushed a small button located on his desk.
     Laga entered the room cautiously as the sliding doors closed behind him.
     “You said you wanted to see me when I was patched up,” he said.
     Klaw gave him a look-over, noticing the bandages with great satisfaction. He then motioned for Laga to sit (which Laga quickly did) and then turned and walked back over to the view-screen. He touched a small panel next to it and a old-worn painting of a sword appeared. Laga gasped.
     “I take it you know what this is?” Klaw asked him without turning around.
     Laga nodded.
     “Good,” Klaw said as he turned back to face Laga. “I’ve been given a mission to look for it. You are going to help me.”
     Laga nodded again, though he was trembling with fear. “Why does our master want it?” He asked.
     “Emperor Zapato did not send me on this mission,” Klaw replied. “He has been concerned with Admiral Ramon Romero and Starfleet. He wants a war he can’t win.”
     “That is treasonous!” Laga yelled as he stood up. “If our master…”
     Klaw’s dark red eyes pierced Laga’s causing him shrink back into his seat, with a look of terror and fear in his own eyes. Klaw shook his head in exasperation and spoke softly to Laga.
     “I do not fear our master,” he said putting an emphasis on the last two words. “Especially with what I know is to be the truth.”
     Klaw turned back toward the screen and pressed on it several times. Laga noticed photos of who he knew to be Aran Lirian. Surely he wasn’t going to be there. Laga knew that was one person he did not want to face again. He kept watching and after a few more seconds, a worn map of Krenox appeared.
     “This is where we are heading once we get to Krenox,” Klaw continued. “As you can see, it is a mountainous region and it is where the Dark Elders are rumored to be.”
     “The who?” Laga asked disbelievingly.
     “The Dark Elders,” Klaw answered impatiently. “They are rumored to be the guardians of the sword. It is also suggested that one of it’s creators is among them.”
     “Where did you get this information?” Laga asked skeptically.
     Klaw grinned. He knew Laga was not to be trusted. He only wished to serve those who could protect him. He would have to be watched. If it wasn’t for the fact that he needed a capable pilot, he would have done this mission on his own.
      “That,” Klaw began sardonically. “Is a need to know answer and you do not and probably will not ever need to know.”
     Klaw turned off the screen and gave Laga a hard, scowling look. He made sure his eyes gave off a threatening vibe as to make sure Laga never again asked that question again. After a few seconds he proceeded to leave the chamber, leaving Laga to tremble alone.



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