The Cimalian Princess: Clone
by AJ Marks
Henry made his way through the throne room thinking about what else he might do to his niece, Meia. She still had the fear which he instill in her when she was younger. It made it easier for him to control her. However, he also had to acknowledge something else had happened while she was in the Alliance.
The doctor stated she had been off the drug for several months, which did not surprise Henry at all. He looked up hearing the familiar footsteps of Jezic. He saw the tall admiral entering the room dressed in the familiar fatigues.
“What’s the news admiral?” Henry asked.
“We have information that one of the ships of the Alliance was destroyed,” Jezic said.
“One out of four, not the best record I see,” Henry said. “It’s a good thing I’m in a good mood today.”
Henry watched the admiral carefully for a few seconds before seeing that the admiral had something else on his mind.
“You’re still thinking about the decision to send Ann to replace Meia in the Alliance,” Henry said to him. “Do not worry about it, she is not the one to replace me as emperor, or is next in line to rule the empire.”
Jezic still appeared confused by the comment before he said anything. “Its still too much of a risk to the empire to allow someone with that knowledge to head to the enemy’s camp. I don’t trust her.”
“Neither do I, that’s why I already have another plan for her. You might say another spy,” Henry said clapping his hands with excitement.
They both turned to see the door open allowing another person who looked like Meia to enter the room. Henry looked over at Jezic noticing his stunned face.
“Admiral Jezic, meet Mia.”
“Mia?” Jezic asked.
“Yes, and I hear you have a problem with a rogue agent,” Mia said to him.
“Yes we do,” Henry said to her, then looked over at Jezic.
“Okay, but you ate going to do what?” Jezic asked.
“You see, Ann was never meant to be a replacement, only the first trial clone. Several things went wrong in that process which we have since ironed out. Mia will replace Ann, and with her blue hair will be more accepting to the people of the Alliance. She also has better memories and anything which has happened since returning can be chalked up to being here,” Henry said looking over at Ann. “Go back and continue your preparations.”
“By your will,” Mia said with a slight bow and then headed out of the room to continue her preparations. Jezic was silent for a few seconds before finally speaking up.
“So, what makes her different than the others?” he asked the emperor.
“Mia knows her place in the empire. She is not the next in line and knows who is,” Henry said to him.
“And who is next in line?” Jezic asked.
“That is a closely guarded secret at the moment, but will be announced soon,” Henry replied. “Trust me, when the time is right things will happen for a reason.”
“Seems like the web is getting too complex for me,” Jexic replied.
“Sometimes you need a complex web to catch a fly,” Henry stated back. “And that’s exactly what I’ve done, created my web and now I wait for my fly. Is there anything else?”
“Only one other thing, the Cimal has completed trials and is ready for action,” Jezic said. Henry recalled the Cimal was the latest warship and an improvement over the battle-cruisers.
“Excellent, assign her to the 1st CF, and tell Admiral Wambu that it’s almost time,” Henry said to him.
“By your will emperor,” Jezic said, walking out of the room.
Henry took several seconds to go over everything before turning to a smaller figure which appeared out of the shadows.
“You didn’t tell him?”
“No, he doesn’t need to know about you yet. You know the timing must be right, especially for the lower classes,” Henry replied back to her.
“Of course father, you’re right,” the voice said. “And what of Mia?”
“She’ll meet an unfortunate accident after she’s taken care of Ann,” Henry replied back to her.
“Ah yes, the preverbal pain in my side. I think I’ll let her punishment fall to you,” Henry said, knowing she probably had several cruel ideas.
“It’ll be my pleasure.”
“Yes, I’m sure it will,” Henry said in a soft voice, turning toward the voice and seeing the small shadow head away from the throne room.
Trina cleaned up her breakfast, wondering if Carl and Ewa talked with the others yet. She hoped they would do something, otherwise things might only get worse. She saw the time when the lower classes could actually do something, but they had to convince the leadership of the rebels.
She looked up at the door at the soft knock. Walking over and opening the door she felt only slightly surprised to see Carl standing there.
“Come in,” Trina said, stepping aside to allow the taller man entrance to her apartment.
“Can’t stay long Trina, but I spoke with Rex about your lights, unfortunately he can’t do anything about it at the moment. He lacks the experience to work on your lights and fears he could damage it beyond repair, sorry,” Carl said.
“I see,” Trina said, watching as Carl left to figure out what he meant. She reviewed his statement realizing that Rex mean the rebels, and the light was probably Meia. They were not going to do anything which angered her. They were too afraid of actually doing anything and preferred the status quo.
She returned to her breakfast trying to think of a way to help Meia out before heading to her job.
Randy waited as the shuttle slowly descended to the surface of Pacifica. He looked out the window again at the surface of the planet. Water covered almost all of the surface, the few islands were mostly populated by the military, or at least that had been the case years ago before the budget cuts. Storms which ravaged the planet helped hide the bases scattered all over the planet, but made going down or up more difficult.
The planet had been central to winning the last couple of wars the Alliance had been in. There were the Pirate Wars and the last major war the Alliance fought, the RC War.
He glanced over at Meia, who still had the blonde hair, something he had yet to get used to. He realized he liked her better with the blue hair instead of the blonde hair. The reddish hue in her hair added an interesting look.
The shuttle bumped indicating it landed on the planet’s surface and he looked out the window again see the familiar military buildings surrounding them. “So, are you ready?” he asked Meia.
“Yep,” Meia replied, glancing back at him.
“Then let’s get this over with, you know how my dad gets when he’s waiting for information,” Randy said. He got up and led Meia off the shuttle and noticed Chad waiting for them. The young man had been his father’s aide now for several years.
“Sir, the admiral is waiting for your report, this way please,” Chad said to them.
Randy nodded following Chad towards one of the conference rooms. He also hoped to hear any word from the Spirit about the Sunray. He really hoped the destroyed made it back without any further engine damage.
Entering the building the air went from the humid Pacifica air to the dry, air-conditioned air before waiting a second for the others to catch up to them. Meia, along with Aaron accompanied him down to the planet to present the information they gathered. They walked down the corridor making a couple of turns before reaching the conference room.
Randy walked and made his way over the computer to sync to his data pad. Once that was finished he turned to the others in the room, including his father. He recognized a few others, including Vice-Admiral Hayes and some of the other lower ranking officials in attendance including a video feed to the President.
He took a breath and accepted the glass of water from Chad before starting. “Ladies and gentlemen, I know many of you have questions so let me give you a quick briefing of what we’ve discovered first. The planet, labeled Cimone, is indeed the new homeworld, or part of the Cimalian Empire. Upon arrival we were not challenged by any Cimalian warships giving us time to send two people down to the surface.”
“Who were the people who went down?” a voice asked, and Randy did not recognize the person.
“Lieutenant Victor and Meia, both pilots aboard the Akagi and have extensive research with the Cimalian Empire,” Randy answered.
“Is this the same Meia who was a Camilian fighter pilot?” Randy heard the question through the speakers and looked over at the screen at the president. Randy thought it was strange as he would already have that information.
“Yes sir, Meia will give her report when I’m done,” Randy answered.
“Carry on then,” President Able Sauer replied.
“We determined a time limit for those who went down at twenty-four hours for recon. After a couple of hours a force of ten Cimalian warships jumped into the orbit around the planet. I had no choice but to order a retreat, and left a message on the shuttle we would return at the end of twenty-four hours,” Randy said looking around the group in front of him.
“And was this part of the plan,” Jack asked.
“No sir, but it seemed the best course of action at the time,” Randy answered, unsure what he might have done if Meia had not returned. “That phase of the mission actually went very well. We coordinated to maximize our area around the planet so our recon team had the shortest distance to travel, and we jumped in from a short distance to minimize the time to jump back out. I would like to ask about the Sunray?”
“I’m sorry to say, the Spirit ran across a debris field in sector sixty-one. It was positively identified as the Sunray, sorry Randy,” Jack said to him. “That brings something else up.”
“We might have spies and saboteurs in our repair facilities,” Randy stated before his father could.
“That’s a serious charge admiral,” Able said, speaking up again.
“I know, and I’m aware of it sir, but the Sunray recently finished a refit to its engines,” Randy said tossing the statement out there. It was an accusation which could endanger the fleet. “I make the charge with reluctance, but either that or there was a saboteur on board the Sunray.”
“Either are serious charges,” Able said. “Admiral have you done anything about this situation?”
“I’ve informed people I feel I can trust about this situation, and we’ve started extensive background checks on all personal working in the docks,” Jack replied.
“Very well, let’s move on to Meia’s report then,” Able said.
Meia felt herself dragged along towards the room once more. She had been drugged again for transport. She understood she had to figure out a way to escape if she wished to live. The biggest relief was the fact her uncle did not appear anywhere in the room. He might make her fearful but these people she did not fear.
Through the drug haze she managed to notice several people working at the computers, probably lower class citizens. She wondered how many people were employed on this project.
“Over here,” the leader said.
“The two guards dragged Meia over to a table and placed her on the table. Each time they extracted some blood, took readouts of her heart, brain and other things she had no idea about. It all involved no pain surprisingly considering the empire’s brutality. She also realized everything worked around keeping her healthy for some unknown reason.
“All right, let’s get this over with people,” the same voice said.
The two guards strapped her down to make sure she could not move. She had to think of a way to escape, but drugged up her awareness was limited. She tried to focus on her surroundings and maybe manage to escape when they took her either out or back to her cell.
Scanning the room she looked for anything which might help her attempt to escape. Her eyes locked onto another pair which seemed familiar to her before the other person looked away. In that short instant Meia felt she knew that person and tried to place her.
The lead scientist walked over at looked at Meia before activating a machine to extract more from her. She knew if they continued it might affect her health. She could not stay in this place much longer.
The machine went to work as Meia continued to think of ways she might be able to escape.
End part 15