“Secure your suit before we go,” Leon instructed. “During combat your cockpit could be blown open by enemy fire and it’ll give you some margin of safety. Hell, we had one trainee crash her ship and rupture the cockpit.”
“Really?” Farah asked.
“Well, my suit is secure,” Farah said. “I’ll do my best not to crash.”
“Good,” Leon stated. “I’ll follow you in the Healer. If you lose control just let go of your controls and let me tractor you.”
“Yessir!” Farah declared.
“Off for her first flight,” Ophelia muttered.
“She’ll be fine,” Kat said. “Unlike some people, she isn’t the reckless type.”
“Who might you be talking about?” Allison asked. “Grace doesn’t even fly a ship.”
“Maybe the only person we’ve had crash during flight training,” Kat said.
“I hear that she’s quite sexy and became the best of all pilots,” Allison said. “Maybe Farah could also learn from making a mistake.”
“We have a transmission coming in,” Lucy reported.
“Good. It might be another job,” Ophelia said. “Patch them through to the main screen. Kat, keep monitoring the flight training.”
“Patching through,” Lucy said.
A humanoid form with a distinctly canine appearance appeared on screen. She had grey fur, hetero-chromatic blue and brown eyes, and a long snout.
“Hi.” she greeted. “Is my friend there. I heard he was there.”
“A Ca’urr,” Ophelia muttered. “You must be talking about the doctor, Paul Albrecht.”
“So he is there!” she cried. “Can I talk to him? Pretty please?”
“Sure,” Ophelia said. She pushed her communication button. “Paul, I’m sending a call to you.” She turned back to the Ca’urr. “I’ll patch you through to the medical bay.”
“Yay!” She declared. Her fluffy tail wagging. Ophelia transferred her to the medical communication console.
“I’ve always wondered how they mastered space travel,” Allison mused. “They’re such a silly species.”
“I wouldn’t be so sure,” Lucy muttered. “Ophie, Paul’s activated his security lockout. I can’t eavesdrop on what they’re saying.”
Ophelia shrugged. “It’s not a big deal. The Ca’urr’s are harmless. Maybe they’re discussing what happened on Ca’urrg.”
“There’s no reason for him to hide that from us,” Lucy protested. “Everyone but Farah knows and she wouldn’t be able to hear it anyway.”
“Honestly, you’re making this a way bigger deal than it needs to be,” Ophelia stated. “We can trust Paul. He certainly isn’t going to cause any trouble with a Ca’urr.”
Farah turned, slowly, carefully. She knew the controls, but she still didn’t have a feel for her machine. It was highly responsive. That much was certain. The movements were smooth and natural. It was almost like turning her own body.
“You’re doing fine,” Leon’s voice came in over her radio. “Just remember that you’re in flight. You can fly up and down. You aren’t limited to one plane.”
Farah steered her craft into a slight descent, pushing forward at the same time. She wondered what it felt like to dive, ascend, turn and dodge quickly. Would she get motion sick her first time trying?
She increased her speed ever so slightly. Moving her craft up, testing its responsiveness at the increased speed.
“This is so boring,” Allison said. “When is Farah going to kick that sucker into high speed?”
“Farah isn’t the type to just turn the speed up,” Kat said. “She’ll increase it, get the hang of the faster speed and repeat until she’s mastered the controls at every speed.”
“Captain,” Paul’s voice said. “I’m transferring the communication back to the bridge. Apparently, she has business to discuss with you.”
“Understood,” Ophelia said. The main screen switched back on. “I understand that there’s something you need from me, Miss…”
“Uras,” the Ca’urr woman said. “My pup is really sick. I need you to bring the doctor to help him.”
“Is this another plague?” Ophelia inquired.
“No, Silly,” Uras said. “The doctor fixed that already. This isn’t so serious.”
Ophelia looked over at Lucy. “Well, Ca’urrg is out of our way. I;’m not sure if we can make the stop.”
“I know. You take jobs!” Uras declared. “So I’ll give you ten thousand credits. Kay? I’ll even get the rest of you some nice rooms at a resort while he works!”
“You, Ma’am, have got yourself a deal,” Ophelia said. “Send us the coordinates and we’ll have him there quickly.”
“Sent,” Uras said. “Thanks much!” The screen went dead as she cut the communication.
“That’s a lot of credits just to have Paul give a kid an exam and some medicine,” Kat said.
“I don’t like it,’ Lucy muttered. “It’s far too suspicious.”
“I would normally agree,” Ophelia said. “But Ca’urrs are the least deceptive species out there. They also don’t care much for credits. So, I think it’s legit.”
“They do always turn down enormous offers from people who want mining rights for their resources,” Kat said. “I suppose there is truth to that.”
“Did you sense anything odd from her?” Ophelia asked.
“I didn’t get anything from her,” Lucy said. “Humans are easy to read. But Ca’urrs are either too open or too skilled at hiding.”
“Well, we’ll head over there and be on our guard,” Ophelia said. “I don’t think there’s going to be any problem, though.”
“I hope that’s the case,” Lucy said, her voice betraying her uncertainty.