"I am going to show them a world,
A world where anything is possible.
Where we go from there, is a choice I leave to you."
-- Neo, The Matrix
“Tell me again: why did we do what we did last night?”
She looked just how I felt: horrible. I nursed my coffee before answering.
“Speak for yourself.”, I finally managed. “I just came to aid a friend who had bitten off more than she could chew - you on the other hand were doing something… how shall I put it…”
“…uncommonly stupid?”, she finished the sentence for me, blushing slightly.
I took another sip from my mug, the sharp taste biting my tongue, but doing nothing against the cobwebs around my brain.
“So, you tell me - why did you attack a POS all by yourself? In the home system of my sister’s Alliance? With friends of the Alliance around? While insulting the locals?”
“I wasn’t all by myself!”, she protested, but I waved dismissively.
“The lone Hyperion at your side hardly counts.” I frowned. “Who was that guy anyway?”
“Actually I’m not quite sure.” She stood up to refilled her own mug. “I met him when we went shooting IBCOs last month, and I have kept in loose contact since. But I can’t say that I really know him.”
I nodded. “A mercenary, just like you.”
“Something like that.” Both hands around her cup, she took a deep breath of the steam emanating from the hot liquid. Exhaling, she sat down across from me.
“And as for last night…”, she shrugged, “I think the whole year simply had come to a head. And when your sister grumbled about her Alliance’ latest stupidity, I just had it.” She grimaced. “The brandy might have played a role as well.”
I rubbed my eyes. “Yeah. I may have made the same mistake.”
“Really? I couldn’t tell!”, she teased, but then quickly became serious again. “Say, will your sister be in trouble?”
“Maybe.” I leaned back, pondering. “Well - technically she didn’t do anything wrong. It was us doing the shooting, and it wasn’t even Alliance property.” I took another sip and closed my eyes, savoring the taste. “Though I sometimes wonder what she’d do if she didn’t have the corp to run. I think she might move on, if it weren’t for the others.”
Opening my eyes again, I looked at her quizzically. “What are you going to do now?”
“I don’t know. Find a new area of operations. Save up for another Moros, maybe.” She stared into her mug, as if it contained the answer. “Or maybe not. It’s not that I really need one; and with you gone, it was the only reason why I even stayed in this area.” A weak smile played around her lips. “In a way, losing it is a relief.”
“A relief with a Billion ISK price tag!”, I snorted.
“I try not to think of that particular detail.” She took a deep drink of her coffee, then put down her mug and reached across the table to take one of my hands into hers.
“Listen,” she began, her voice suddenly soft, “I know we had had our differences, and this is not how I pictured meeting you again - creating a mess instead of patching things up.” She gave my hand a light squeeze. “But I ‘m glad that you came.”
Surprised, I looked up, and saw her looking at me intently - in her eyes words she didn’t dare to say. And after previous night, she no longer had to.
I intertwined my fingers with hers. “It’s good to be back.”