Most people seem to get a mite bit surprised when I tell ‘em I was on Helios for the Forefather’s first attack. Me, I don’t quite get all the fuss. It was a bad time, sure. But as you might soon learn, it takes a whole lot to rattle me. Always has, far back as I can remember.
Burn my hand with a soldering iron at five? Nary a tear. Watch my old man blow his brains out when his business went south? No big thing. See my family burn when a Forefather missile hit our home on Helios? Shoot, that was no picnic, but I still don’t remember feeling much of anything at the time. Some people might say I’m a bit detached, and I’d say that’s a not unfair assessment. But I’d much rather be keeping my cool and fixing a problem then running about like some dumb sap without a plan.
I was barely eight for the first attack, and so I got shuttled off to a home for war orphans. Those times were alright; sneaking off in the dead of night to monkey around with the tech in the scrap yard next door. I built my first robot at twelve and my first functional hover ship at fifteen. Yessir, not to shine my own badge, but I was something of a prodigy when it came to matters of building and fixing. In my time at the orphanage, I learned a valuable lesson, one I’ve kept with me ever since.
With the right tools, you can fix damn near anything.
My pop’s business failed cuz he didn’t have the business chops to get things done. Turns out he also lacked the mental tools to deal with failure of such a kind. The Helios defenses failed that day on account of the fact they were designed for enemies of a decidedly more local variety. You see what I mean. None of these things had to happen. Heck, nothing bad needs to happen. Just gotta keep your head and have the right tools for the job….
But I digress.
I got myself a full-ride through college, with a little help from a government military recruitment program. What with the Forefathers running around known space picking fights with every inhabited human planet, it should be no surprise that they were always looking for fresh talent.
Once I left school, Aeronautical Engineering degree in hand, I was quickly scooped up by the Helian SDF (Space Defense Force) and assigned to a Dreadnaught-class warship on patrol at the edge of one of our primary supply routes. It was a decent assignment, and gave me plenty of time in the off-duty to redesign much of the ship’s emergency response system and weapons platform. Apparently my little side projects caught the eye of some of the higher-ups, and I got myself fast-tracked to Chief Petty Officer onboard. At twenty-nine years of age, I do believe I am the youngest individual to reach such a rank.
Yessir, this ship has been pretty good to me. Do wish I’d had more time to work on the shield actuators, though. Might’ve given us a few more seconds to abandon ship once the Forefathers blew us out of the sky. Oh well. Least my escape pod system seems to be humming along nicely. Awful cramped in here, but I don’t mind.
I sure hope this planet I’m about to crash land onto has some water, else I might find myself in a pretty pickle. Reckon I’ll find out soon enough.