Ben and Streek: Clone Saga Ch. 07byAxelotl©
Chapter 7 - Get Over It
In the Perseus arm of the Milky Way Galaxy is a Globular Cluster known as M13. A huge gathering of thousands of stars, one hundred light years wide.
Hidden within, amongst its' blazing bright light, was the secret base of the Resistance. The base consisted of a mass of different Star Ships joined together in a jagged spherical shape, its' outer surface constantly changing as ships came and went.
Its' occupants had nicknamed the makeshift Space Station Sunnydale.
A Drummond Cargo Hauler, buried within, had been fitted out as a gym. It housed a holo-shed which incorporated Alien Technology, making it one of the most advanced in the galaxy.
Streek was in the gym, flat on her back on a weight bench, dressed in her black gi that Makita made her, straining as she lifted a barbell up over her large breasts. Bernie appeared over her. "Hey there! Need someone to spot you?"
"No, I was doing fine on my own. ...ngh!"
"Well, I was getting tired of drinking on my own, I might as well work out with you."
"If you want. ...ngh!"
"I thought you'd be in the holo-shed."
"They're using it to ...ngh, train some recruits."
Streek brought the bar down again and grit her teeth as her face tensed up as she struggled to lift it again.
"Here, I'll get that." said Bernie, going to grab the bar.
"No!, I got it! ...Nnnnnaagh!" Streek groaned and strained as she slowly lifted the heavy barbell up, when her arms straightened again, Bernie helped her put it back onto the rack.
Streek sat up again, sweat ran down her red face, she rubbed her sore arms. "I gotta get stronger," she said. "That's only fifty kilos. I wasn't that strong when I was a man, now I'm a girl I'm even weaker."
Bernie looked at her, "Right, you're weaker, that's why you had your male copy running scared."
Streek didn't say anything to that.
"They had you chained up Streek, It wouldn't have mattered how strong you were."
"I know that." said Streek, her expression darkening.
"Move over girl, I wanna go, will you spot me?"
"If you want."
Bernie laid down on the bench and lifted the barbell then started pressing, she didn't seem to have any trouble with the weight.
"Have you ever done that before?" asked Streek.
"Back at the Academy, not by choice."
"Why did you leave?"
"Are you kidding? I fuckin' hated it. ...nngh, I could see it in my Dads eyes too, he hated being a Fed. Bunch of Ass-holes!"
"Yeah, Ass-holes." said Streek.
Ben reached a point where she had the barbell down and was straining to lift it too. "Gnnh ...Nnnngaah ...Spot!"
Streek grabbed the bar and helped her to lift it up to the rack again. "See Streek, nothing wrong with getting a little help now and then. Even Rocky Balboa got help from Apollo Creed to defeat Clubber Lang."
Streek walked off to a nearby punching bag and started throwing some fast punches. The strong blows knocked the hanging bag around. Bernie went over and held it as Streek laid into it.
"This sucks!" said Streek as she struck out. "We should be out there, looking for that damn Pod!"
"I'm with you there, but the Doc doesn't even want to talk to me. Why doesn't he just get over it, so we can get on with it?"
Streek did a hard roundhouse kick, knocking Bernie back a step. "I've got half a mind to take the Avatari out there myself."
Bernie looked around the bag at her, "Do you want to?"
"Bernie ...look there's Makita."
The white plated android was walking through the gym toward them. As she approached, Bernie said, "There she is, our droid in shining armour. How are you Mak?"
"I am functioning well, thank you Bernadette. Doctor Arnott and General Bolton request the presence of both of you aboard the Angelina." she said in her monotone androgynous voice.
"Now they want to talk. It's about time." said Streek.
"Yeah, they better be telling us we're moving out again. Come on Streek, we don't wanna keep them waiting."
Streek was all sweaty and still wearing her black gi, Bernie was wearing a maroon track-suit. They didn't shower or get changed and just followed the android out of the gym.
"Hey Makita, there's something I wanted to ask you." said Streek as they walked along. "When you entered the Resolve to come and rescue us, were you scared at all? ...y'know that you'd be destroyed?"
"I do not feel scared. I do not feel any human emotions ...sometimes that makes me sad."
Streek and Bernie looked at each other. "Was that a joke?" asked Bernie.
"Yes, I have observed the use of humour, with some people, and in some situations, it is appreciated."
"Ha ha!, 'sometimes that makes me sad', good one Mak!" laughed Bernie.
"I prefer you talking like this." said Streek. "The other ways the Doc had you talking made you sound stupid."
"Yes." said Makita.
Bernie looked her over. "If you can learn to crack a joke, then perhaps you can develop your own personality, rather than those fake ones the Doc has been programming into you."
"I was not designed to develop my own personality. It serves no purpose."
"Yeah, you were built by the Federation, they hate individual personalities, I know." said Bernie. "But you should work on that personality thing Mak, crack more jokes, swear if things don't go your way, and if you get sick of people ordering you around, tell them where to go."
"Where is that?" asked Makita.
"You'll work it out. I'll have a word to the Doc about it."
"I will take that under consideration."
"Just as long as you don't call me slut, or honey, or dude. I want you to call me Streek."
"You got it, ...Dudette!"
They boarded the Angelina and Makita lead them to General Boltons' office. Doctor Arnott was there standing in a corner and the General was sitting behind his clean and ordered semi-circular desk.
They could see a couple of 3D holo-pics on his desk, one was of Mia and Zac, the other was of a beautiful red-headed woman, Streek assumed it was Angelina, his dead wife.
"General, Doctor." said Bernie in way of greeting.
"Hello girls, please take a seat." said General Bolton gesturing to the chairs in front of his desk. "Thank you Makita, that will be all."
Makita nodded and left the room. Bernie and Streek sat down. "Sorry about our attire General." said Streek. "...We were working out."
"That's fine," said the General, regarding them with his intense eyes. "I wanted to tell you both that we're sorry."
"Oh?" said Bernie.
"You have a background of freighting cargo through systems. We drew you into our highly dangerous world of covert operations against an extremely powerful, ruthless enemy. We assumed that implanting a few experience sets would make you ready for this dangerous mission. I see now that it was a bad call, you were almost killed, and went through a terrible ordeal."
"Hold on a minute!" said Bernie, "...You're making it sound like we were in over our heads and screwed up big time. I think we both handled ourselves well on New Heidi. We found our Sires quickly and stayed under the Feds' radar, and I got us the Intel we were after. We had no way of knowing the Pirates would show up like they did, if it weren't for them, we wouldn't have been captured."
"If you had not wilfully chosen to disobey a clear and direct order from your Commanding Officer, you wouldn't have been captured. That's what this is about Anders."
"I made a judgement call in the field. I thought that Ben Anders and his clones would be useful to the Resistance as allies."
"Your 'judgement call' put our whole operation at risk. You forced Dr. Arnott to make what was by far our boldest attack on the Federation. He disabled several Federation Cruisers, and your escape was nothing short of a bloodbath. The Federation will not take this lying down!"
"I'm sorry General, okay?! For the record, Streek was against what I did. I basically threatened her to get her to come along."
"No, I made my choice." said Streek.
"We know what happened. We've decided it would be best if the two of you didn't go out on any more missions. You're to stay here at the base, at least until the Cloning Pod is recovered. I will assign other operatives to work with Dr. Arnott."
"That's Bullshit!" cried out Streek.
"General, you can't do this!" said Bernie. "I'll accept whatever punishment you got, but we gotta go out there again. You know how important the Cloning Pod is to us."
"This isn't a matter of punishment. I think the two of you have been punished enough. It's a matter of trust, we no longer trust you in the field."
"Then how can we earn your trust again?"
"By doing as you're ordered. Anders, our engineering department is always flat out repairing and modifying our fleet, they would be glad to have someone of your abilities. McKenzie, the Doctor has gifted you with extensive combat experience, you can assist Sergeant Takoshi in training our recruits."
"Please General," said Streek, "...we feel it now, the burning hatred for the Federation that I know you feel." She nodded to the holo-pic of Angelina, "...You can't ground us now, we need to be out there doing all we can."
"I don't need wild dogs out there looking for pay-back. I need disciplined soldiers who do what's required of them."
"We'll follow orders, I promise."
"I've made my decision, that's all I have to say on the matter."
Streek looked over at Dr. Arnott, "Is that how you feel Doc? You don't trust us?"
"It is. I'm sorry Lisa."
"Can you at least bring us up to date with what's going on? With what your next move is?" said Bernie. The General and Dr. Arnott stayed quiet for a moment. "Come on, I was the one who got you the intel on this Amos Chong guy, have you found him?"
"A couple of our agents tracked him down. They were killed in action. It seems Chong is quite skilled with the weapons he sells." said General Bolton sadly.
"We can take him down," said Streek. "Come on, you need us to capture him."
"No we don't. Chong is a known associate of the Steel Sharks Pirate Faction."
"Do you think he sold the Cloning Pod on to the Pirates?" asked Bernie.
"It seems likely. Mia and Zac have confirmed rumours that the Pirate Alliance has reformed, under the leadership of a man known as Skylar, of which we know very little. They are hunting down Xenoform Technology as well."
Dr. Arnott walked forward and spoke up, "If the Pirates have the Cloning Pod, it's a very dire situation indeed. They would have the means of creating a powerful army. With it they would go about seizing territory and full scale war with the Federation would be inevitable."
"The Galaxy will bleed." said General Bolton, "...and with Alien Technology coming into it, it'll be a war the likes of which has never been seen. I don't mean to sound dramatic, but the human race may not even survive such a war. The Final War!"
"Do you know why the Steel Sharks attacked the Facility?" asked Bernie.
"I have a theory." said Dr. Arnott. "I remember you mentioning a book authored by my former colleague, Dr. Gascoyne."
"The instruction manual for the Cloning Pod?"
"Yes, I think that perhaps it wasn't sold with the Pod. The Pirates need it to work out how to use the machine."
"You think it was still onboard the Clubber Lang?, the Feds didn't find it?"
"I think perhaps the Pirates thought it was still on the Clubber Lang. They planned on taking the ship and finding it, and when you disabled the main security system, they seized the opportunity."
"I see." said Bernie.
"That means that for the time being, they don't know how to use the Cloning Pod."
"And the Clubber Lang is not only going to be hunted down by the Federation, but by the Pirate Alliance as well. General, you need to let us go out there, I can find the Lang and at least we will have that book."
"No, I told you, you're to stay here."
"But General, you need..."
"You've been given your orders, I want you to report to Lieutenant Roughen in the Engineering Section at zero seven hundred tomorrow morning, that'll be all Anders."
Bernie and Streek reluctantly left the Generals' office, they were both pissed off. Doctor Arnott came out behind them, "Bernie, Lisa wait up, there's another matter I wanted to discuss with you."
"What's up Doc?"
"Well, I just wanted to know how you were doing. ...I know you both had a very rough time on the Resolve, I feel terrible about that, I feel somewhat responsible for you, you know."
"You helped us get out of there before things got far worse. We're very grateful Doc." said Streek.
"Yes, but still it must be a terrible burden for you to bear. I wanted you to know that there is something I could do to help you out with that."
"What are you talking about?"
"You know that with the mind-write device I can load experience directly into your mind. I can also go in and remove experiences as well, things that might be hard for you to come to terms with, like sexual assault and torture."
"You're saying you can wipe our memories of getting raped?" said Bernie.
"Yes, I'm telling you that it's possible, the decision is, of course, up to you. Alternatively you could talk with Makita, she's a qualified councillor you know."
"Of coarse she is," said Streek. "The droid with a thousand professions."
"Well, think about it, and discuss it with each other. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help." Doctor Arnott went back into the Generals office, leaving the girls standing there.
"Well, ...do you wanna go and get a drink?" said Bernie.
"I'm going back to the gym, I need to punch something."
That night, Streek was there again. Chained up and naked in the interrogation room. Several dark, indistinguishable figures were all around her.
She struggled against her bonds but was helpless as they kept on hurting her. Then she saw the face of one of her attackers, it was male Streek, and he was laughing at her. Then all of them were male Streek, laughing at her and continuing to hurt her.
Streek suddenly jolted up from her bed in her dark quarters, she was covered in sweat and panting. Stupid clone mind, I'm not there anymore, I escaped!
Then Streek noticed that the door to her quarters was open, there was a dark figure there in the room with her.
Streek quickly reacted, lashing out with a kick, hitting the person. She pounced from the bed, tackling them to the ground. "Aaaargh ...Streek Stop! It's me!" cried out Bernie just a Streek was about to punch her face.
"Ben?!! ...Bernie!" Streek got off of her. "Drakk Bernie, what are you doing?"
"I... I just ...wanted to be with you."
"Fuck, I was about to take your head off. ...I don't want to have sex with you, okay?!"
"No, ...I ...just want ...will you hold me?" There was something in her voice that made her sound really vulnerable.
Streek got up and got back into bed. "Yeah, come on." she said.
Streek was laying on her side on the bed. Bernie got in and pressed her body up against her so that they were spooning. She was wearing her panties and a flimsy singlet.
Streek put her arm around her and could feel the warmth of Bernies' body against hers'. Perhaps it was what she needed too, after her bad dream. "Thanks Streek." Bernie said softly to her.
"That's okay. Sorry about hitting you."
"No, It was my fault. ...I wish I was strong like you."
"What? You're the strong one, nothing ever phases you."
"I wish that was true. Back ...there, when I woke up and you weren't there, I was so fuckin' scared. And then they took me into that room and I saw those guys ...raping you. I was shattered. But then you fought Streek, you fought like a fuckin' demon and you set me free."
"You fought too Bernie, and it was the Doc who set us free."
There was a moment of silence between the two of them and then Bernie said, "Are you going to take the Doc up on his offer?"
"I don't know. I just... I need to think about it."
The two of them fell silent again. Streek could smell Bernies' hair, hear the steady rhythm of her breathing, and feel her soft warm flesh pressed against her. Eventually she drifted off to sleep again with Bernie in her arms.
The next morning Streek headed into the large, empty cargo bay of a ship located near the gym. There were ten young men and women lined up in the middle of it wearing white gis.
Sergeant Takoshi was standing in front of them, talking, giving them an introduction to unarmed combat. Streek was wearing her own black gi. She approached the group, feeling a bit anxious.
The Sergeant stopped talking when he saw her. "You're late recruit. What's your name?"
"Lisa McKenzie Sir..."
"That's Sergeant Recruit, ...not Sir!"
"I'm not a recruit, General Bolton sent me here to assist you in instructing the recruits."
Sergeant Takoshi was a square jawed Asian man in his forties, his hair was short and dark grey, he wasn't much taller than Streek. He had the look of a tough, disciplined military man.
"Did he now?" The Sergeant looked her over, she could feel the eyes of all the recruits on her as well. "...How old are you?"
One week. "I'm twenty years old."
"Have you instructed in CQC before?"
"Close Quarters Combat. Are you sure you're in the right place?"
"No and yes."
"No and yes?"
"No, I haven't instructed before, and yes, I'm in the right place." she heard some of the recruits snickering.
"And how long have you been practicing martial arts Miss McKenzie?"
"Uh, honestly ...about four days, but..."
"Drakk! What's Bolton doing to me?!" Most of the recruits laughed.
One of the recruits spoke up, he was a big guy who stood around six and a half feet tall, he had short brown hair, and was around twenty as well. "I have a black belt in Karate Sergeant. I'm not gunna learn anything about fighting from someone I can wipe the floor with. It'll just be a waste of my time."
Streek stared hard at him. He gave her a mocking smile and stared at her breasts. "Sergeant, would it be all right if I demonstrated my qualifications to this recruit?"
"Sure, I'd like to see this." said Sergeant Takoshi smiling.
Streek stepped forward, "Come on then, what's your name recruit?"
"Ryan Olsen. I generally don't like beating up girls. How about I take you out on a date instead? You would like that much better."
"I seriously doubt that."
The other students watched in interest as the two of them faced off against each other, the man was over a foot taller and had forty kilos on her.
"I'm interested to see what you both can do." said Sergeant Takoshi, "...Begin."
Ryan came at her straight away, striking out with his fists and feet. Obviously he wanted to take her down quickly in front of his classmates.
Streek was dodging his blows with ease. She knew Karate backwards, his every move was so predictable. Ryan continued to lash out at her, but was only hitting air as Streek moved about.
"Raaaah!, stay still you bitch!" His attacks got more frenzied and Streek just continued to dodge every blow without striking back.
"Have we started fighting yet Ryan?" Streek teased him. The other recruits laughed. She was enjoying humiliating the big meat-head, he reminded her of the big jocks that used to pick on her when she was a wimpy boy in high-school.
Ryan came at her again, and she dodged his attacks. Then he managed to grab her by the front of her gi with both hands. Streek quickly raised her arms and knocked his arms wide apart, leaving him wide open. She gave a single quick jab to his nose. He cried out and stumbled back, clutching his face.
"Aaaagh, you bitch!, I think you broke by dose." said Ryan as blood streamed down from his nose.
The other students were staring with great interest. Streek realised the front of her gi had come loose and part of her boobs were exposed, she quickly closed it up, blushing with embarrassment.