Wednesday, April 17, 2019

WEP April 2019: Captain Wrath and the Jewel Box

I almost missed the last day and I wrote this three weeks ago, but forgot to upload.
Here's my entry - super late.

I'm continuing to delve in the legends and history of my fictional character Captain Wrath, with help from Professor Shlump and also from Cecily, the leader of Captain Wrath's fan club. To read the earlier entry about Captain Wrath, go here: 28 Days.
This is an ongoing saga, and will continue in June.

To recap: Captain Wrath (a man in costume for a themed space ship cruise) has been recruited to work under cover to rescue victims of human trafficking. His sister went missing over a year ago. He has some problems with drugs, alcohol, and a general disregard for rules. He has a tendency to jump feet first without thinking, especially if he sees someone he believes needs rescuing.

The story is told via "historical" records of his Captain's log and commentary by those compiling or refuting the records.

999 words, not including the title
Captain Wrath’s Jewel Box is a new decryption from the legendary exploits of the individual known only as Captain Wrath whose true identity remains unknown. My colleagues and I continue to urge the Galaxy’s Hall of Heroes to strike Captain Wrath from their list. It’s ridiculous to believe one man saved “millions.” We have also discovered the “decryption team” is actually from a student fan club at Excelsior University. They couldn’t possibly be giving us correct information. We’ve included their latest letter as proof of their fallibility. (Dr. Aranus Shlump, Professor of Cultural Purity at Halitox University)

Dearest Members of the Captain Wrath Historical Society,
We have unearthed one of the original belongings of Captain Wrath! It’s an aquamarine jewel box with an authentic star map inside and a string of pearls. Our best decryption team is working on it along with the journal. Maybe the map will lead us to understand how the Captain saved the lives of millions of people. Maybe we will find out about his love life! Who knows? There’s so much more to uncover!
Captain Wrath’s Biggest Fan, Cecily Rodgraves
PhD student of Heroes in History at Excelsior University

Captain's Log
16.4.2175 First Day Back Aboard the Wraith
After six weeks of grueling basic training from the GIA, the last thing I expected was a package on my desk. The GIA doesn't give out rewards for exemplary, or other, training.
Back to the package. It was wrapped in plain packaging.
When I opened it, I had to step away from my desk. My hands were shaking. I longed for a drink. I wanted to shout, but I couldn’t find my voice. My GIA training officer would not be pleased to see how a simple object could bring me to my knees. But it was my sister’s jewelry box. Lia’s favorite out of all the ones our family had given to her. It was from me for her thirteenth birthday.
            I know I should open the lid, but I just can’t. I don’t know who sent it to me. There’s no return address listed. When I finally called Garth, my Head of Security, he took the whole thing to the lab for clues to where it came from and why it showed up on my desk. I don’t know if it means my family found me, or if Lia is dead.

17.4.2175 In Port, Waiting for Orders
            It is Lia’s jewelry box. They found her prints on it. The shipping package showed nothing. The ship lab scanned it, opened it, and sent it back to me. It took me two hours to have the courage to open it.
            There’s a star map inside. Coordinates for a journey which lead to the Waystar Moon, a hidden colony infamous for housing criminals. It’s a map someone in Secure Force should have. It’s a map the Space Force should have, or the GIA. But I’m not giving it up. It doesn’t matter where it came from. I’m following the coordinates. I need to speak to my crew. I can’t take them into a fight without their knowledge, can I?
            I really don’t want to tell Miss Nosy Counselor. She’ll probably tell me to turn it over to the “Proper” authorities who can deal with it.

19.4.2175 Underway
I waited thirty standard hours before making my decision. My AA sponsor would be proud of me. My GIA training officer would be kicking me in the pants. I gathered my crew and told them about my sister Lia, about how she was taken, and about the star map inside the jewelry box. As predicted, Counselor Amai wanted me to hand it over to the authorities. Hank, Telli, and many of the others disagreed. Hank put Counselor Amai in the brig for her own protection. We’re underway now to the first set of coordinates.

20.4.2175 At the First Set of Coordinates
It’s a pirate space port. Real pirates. Overall, most of the pirates here actually do have terrible taste in garish clothes like my costume. My crew and I are trying to blend in, but as always, Telli or Garth take turns making sure I don’t actually drink anything inebriating. What they don’t know is that I would never put my cravings above finding my sister. The strongest Rock Troll vodka doesn’t begin to compare to the justice I crave for Lia.

21.4.2175 Second Set of Coordinates
We had to leave in a rush from our first port of call. Hank took offense to some traffickers he discovered. We joined him in the fight. I’m not proud my anger almost took me away from our main objective: freeing the slaves. Now, we have eleven in the medical bay and we’ve decided to rest our wounds at this second set of coordinates, an old mining colony which appears to be abandoned.

22.4.2175 Underway
The mining colony wasn’t abandoned. The creatures who live on those barren rocks have acid for blood and they seem to feed on any species they contact. We barely escaped with our lives and had to blow the place to space dust.

23.4.2175 Third Set of Coordinates
I’m glad I deciphered the coordinate code from the jewel box. I recognized it as the one Lia and I used as children. It’s given me hope for this journey.
However, this place we’ve found is dangerous. I wonder what Lia's trying to tell me.
The primary intelligent life on this planet is plant-based and symbiotic. The ruling class of plants secrete a substance which forces all others to their will. I’m glad we have a good toxicologist on board. We could have all been killed.
Is Lia trying to warn me away or warn me of dangers ahead?
No matter. I'm going to rescue her.

Dear Fans,
We regret we have been unable to finish the decryption past this point. Our funds are low and college is expensive. Please be patient.
Cecily Redgrave

 Go here to find more awesome stories for this month's theme: WEP


Pat Garcia said...

Plants on another planet who dominate people an interesting take on the jewel box and well-crafted.

Shaom aleichem,
Pat G

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks, Pat!

Jemi Fraser said...

Such fun! I really enjoy the Captain Wrath tales!! great take on the theme!!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thank you, Jemi! Glad you like them!

krystal jane said...

Yay! More Captain Wrath! ^_^

I love the note at the end about being low on funds. I’m donating to their cause.

Olga Godim said...

Fascinating! Plants that dominate - what a concept. I wouldn't want to be on that planet either.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Krystal - Thanks! :P

Olga - me either! Thanks for stopping by.

Elephant's Child said...

My greedy reading self wants more. I do love a flawed, impulsive and determined protagonist...

Tyrean Martinson said...

Elephant's Child - aww, sweet! Thanks!

Mark said...

Such a unique backstory, luv it! :)

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks, Mark!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tyrean - not sure I can wait til June ... but guess I'll have to. Love your take on the jewel box and how you've woven it into your story line. I think I'll stay here ... plant-based symbiotic life ... I'd never survive! But enjoyable storytelling ... I too would donate to Cecily! Cheers Hilary

Natalie Aguirre said...

Great story. What a fantastic way to weave in the theme of a jewel box. And you really made it fascinating with the box being his sister's. I really enjoyed it.

Nilanjana Bose said...

Well crafted and engaging. Captain Wrath is a flawed hero in the classic style. Great world building in a few words - really admire that. This is turning out to be a compelling series. A brilliant take on the prompt. Kudos.

J Lenni Dorner said...

Ohh, very intriguing! I do wonder about those plants being used to control people. Coffee, anyone? Ha ha. Excellent work with this.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks for your encouragement, Hilary!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Glad you enjoyed it! Thanks, Natalie!

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks! I was hoping the world-building was clear.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Love your thought about coffee! I may have to tweak my idea to go that direction.

cleemckenzie said...

Finally the plants will have their way! Great idea,Tryrean. I loved the idea and I loved getting more of your Captain Wraith.

Bernadette said...

Interesting... Would like to know what they uncover. (Maybe I could join the research team at Excelsior University and help them out?)

Edix said...

Fun and fanciful.

D.G. Hudson said...

This appeals to me due to its sci-fi setting, a starship. I would like to read more so will have to go back to read the previous WEP. I like the premise, and a rogue captain is always interesting. Glad you did post your story.

L.G. Keltner said...

I love reading about Captain Wrath! Those Cultural Purity snobs have no sense of adventure! I hope he finds his sister in the end.

Tyrean Martinson said...

C. Lee - I thought you might enjoy a plant take-over! :)

Bernadette - You would be welcome on the team!

Edix - Thank you!

DG - Thanks!

LG - I hope so, too. :)

Thank you all for commenting!

Toi Thomas said...

Great take on the prompt and a cool continuation of this story. I look forward to more of it in June. I really like this character and love that he's taking on bad guys.

Denise Covey said...

Intriguing Captain Wraith tale, Tyrean! Haven't we all noticed how nature takes over abandoned houses etc and vines strangle. Always intrigued me. Here the plants are in control. Nice touch with the jewel box belonging to his sister. Adds another element so we don't forget his search for her. We all want more. Roll on June!

Rebecca M. Douglass said...

So glad you are continuing the story, and that Captain Wrath is getting some clues, maybe getting closer to his sister. I like the format, though it does make the story a little skimpy on the sort of “showing” we are always told to do. Still, it works...

Roland D. Yeomans said...

I enjoy the Captain Wraith tales. I, too, just squeaked in today:

Roland Clarke said...

What fun - this how I love my SciFi. An irreverent hero. Lots of adventure - with a splash of vodka. Humour. Laughs. Stuffed-shirt authorities. Broke student investigators. I want more. Like if Counselor Amai is in the brig, will she get out? Are the millions of people human, plant-based, or rock-pirates. evn jewels?

Tyrean Martinson said...

Toi - thank you! I'm glad you like it!

Denise - thanks! I thought it would be fun to do more with plants ... and there may be more about them in the future.

Rebecca - Thanks! Yeah, I worry about the "telling" aspect of this kind of writing, but I'm thinking of a few ways to combat that in the next installment.

Roland D. - Thanks! I just read your entry.

Roland - I love your "what if" questions! Thank you. They are definitely on point for some of what's coming. :)

Michelle Wallace said...

The Captain Wraith adventures continue...
I love the style and voice of these entries.
Well done!

Jamie said...

Gah, seems like such a cliffhanger. Ties in so well with the start though. Enjoyable read.