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 Post subject: Travels With Uncle Ahmed
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 3:47 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Galetea III Starport, 3031
“Algedi shuttle, departing from gate fourty-seven, now boarding. Executive passengers will be admitted first.”
Sitting in the waiting area, 12-year old Mohammed As`Zaman Bey turned off his datapad and looked to his uncle expectantly. The middle-aged gentleman in the traditional robes of a Bedouin merchant calmly read his holy Quran. With a sigh, the boy, wearing his white gambas and red fez, peered through the large window. It was night but the shuttle was brightly illuminated, its stark whiteness almost painful to look upon. They had been on this obscure planet for the better part of a week, tramping through warehouses, attending auctions and viewing pallet after pallet of what young Mohammed could only call heaps of junk.
Junk was Uncle Ahmed’s business. Mohammed’s cousins all called Uncle Ahmed “the Vulture,” not only because of his beak like nose but because wherever a battle was fought, Uncle Ahmed would eventually appear to pick over the remains. For the last three years, little Mohammed Bey would spend his Summers away from the academy and his family to accompany his mother’s eldest brother as he did his work, picking over wrecked battlemechs and vehicles, hoping to find bargains to send home.
This year was different. For his birthday, Uncle Ahmed presented Mohammed with the latest portable datapad –it was attuned to his voice, projected ultradefinition holovids and had all the latest games. Uncle Ahmed’s gift included a set of data crystals containing complete libraries of books as well as information needed to help him with his present hunt for useful scrap.

Uncle Ahmed made it a game. That morning, they had gone to a vast warehouse and strode between dozens of pallets each heaped with damaged electronic components. Mohammed Bey wielded a small palm scanner linked to his new portable datapad. The scanner was set to read the imprinted information on the various chips mounted on the stacks of surplus circuit boards. The data crystal in his datapad listed millions of chips, as the pulsing laser on his scanner passed over a circuit board, the chips identified would be listed. Occasionally he would scan a very old circuit board that contained a chip highlighted on his list –Uncle Ahmed promised a reward for each usable chip he found. Each pallet could hold a two thousand circuit boards and each circuit board held hundreds of chips. Mohammed quickly learned to identify particular circuit boards and reprogrammed his scanning software to locate them out of the thousands. Out of every fifty or so pallets, he may glean one or two of the valuable chips from his list. The real reward was if he found more of the special chips than the two servants, Kalaf and Taq, that his uncle employed. After a week of searching, he easily doubled their tally.
Once they presented their scanning results to Uncle Ahmed, he would pick out the pallets as well as the pallets on either side of them. This practice made Mohammed smile, he knew that these chips were somehow very valuable –valuable enough for an expensive ruse and much more valuable than a reward slice of sweet baklava.

The line boarding the shuttle thinned a bit. “Time to board, nephew.” Said Uncle Ahmed, signaling to his servants. Uncle Ahmed disliked standing in line and did his best to avoid it. He was often the last to board a shuttle or vehicle and usually the last to disembark. “These sheep hurry to stand in line, hurry to wait for their luggage –No matter how late I get off the shuttle,” He chuckled through his bristling, gray beard, “I still get to the luggage claim area before my bags do.”

Algedi
The desert world Algedi was the home of Uncle Ahmed’s clan. Mohammed Bey found the nightless planet discomforting. At the starport, Mohammed donned the covering robes of his uncle’s clan as well as a pair of thick, darkened goggles. “Mohammed, make certain you drink much water, as the air here is very dry.” The youth nodded as he sipped water through a tube from a bottle on his harness.
The grav-lev sped through the flat plains like a silver spear. All of the passengers in his car wore the voluminous cloth covering of the Algedi Azami. The long craft glided over its single track, its destination a remote station at the base of a long mountain range deep within the Azami enclave –a vast region restricted to the Azami people. As usual, Uncle Ahmed spent most of the travel time napping. Despite this being Mohammed Bey’s first time on Algedi, he too was weary of his travels and after a few hours of peering at the monotonous landscape, curled up on his seat and closed his eyes.

“Ouida!” announced the conductor, “Next stop, Ouida!” Mohammed Bey yawned and stretched, slipping his hands under his veil to rub his eyes. He pushed his goggles over his eyes, everything still blurry as the cotton in his brains slowly cleared. His stomach rumbled. It had been almost twelve hours since he and his uncle arrived on planet, a two-hour wait for the grav-lev and about six hours since they had a light meal in the dining car. He put his mouthpiece to his lips and sipped a mouthful of water. Slipping a hand into a pocket, he pulled out a dried fig. He wrinkled his nose and brushed the lint off of it before popping the chewy fruit into his mouth. He wondered when he would finally be outside. He and his uncle had been indoors, subjected to artificial environments since the left the last system’s starport. Weeks of space travel and now, on Algedi, they had been indoors and sheltered for over a month. Despite how forbidding the outer environment appeared, Mohammed was eager to stand under open sky once more. Sure enough, the Ouida station was fully enclosed.
“No need for your eye protection, Mohammed.” Smiled Uncle Ahmed. The servants had already claimed their luggage and pushed the laden carts though the tunnel that led to the parking area. “The pallets we purchased will be delivered to our clan’s workshops to be sorted and processed.” Said Uncle Ahmed, as they drove through a maze of underground tunnels to a guarded section. They were saluted as they disembarked from their old limousine. “This is where your mother’s clan keeps its wealth.”

They entered a large warehouse-sized workshop hewn from the ancient rock. Mohammed Bey guessed that the mountain range housed a huge complex, unknown to outsiders and unbelievers. Within the workshop were dozens of women, sitting at tables heaped with circuit boards, carefully disassembling them using under microscopes, soldering lasers and forceps. Mohammed could see the various chips being removed and sorted. Traditional Bedouin music played over ceiling speakers and workers pushed carts, collecting components or dropping off more boards to be disassembled. Uncle Ahmed led Mohammed through huge double doors to a loading dock where forklifts delivered pallets heaped with electronic components. Under blaring lamps, elderly men in white robes directed younger men in sorting the circuit boards, checking their clipboards and making notations. Mohammed could recognize a cart heaped with the older components that he learned to search for. Uncle Ahmed smiled, “Ah, you see the valuable ones.” He led the youth to the cart, “These are ancient bits of technology that nobody makes any more. We search through thousands of common, modern components to reclaim a handful of parts used in our peoples’ ancient battlemechs.”
“Like my father’s Mongoose?” asked the boy.
“Yes, the sensors and computer system are no longer in production. When a chip or board needs to be replaced, it will most likely come from your mother’s clan. There are five of our brothers who also travel the Inner Sphere and Periphery searching for occasional fragments of Star League technology.”

They strode into another workshop, this one filled with women taking sorted and cleaned chips and refurbishing the older, rare circuit boards. Mohammed Bey fully realized the importance of his uncle’s travels and purchases.
“We keep the refurbished Star League circuit boards for use by the Arkab Legions. The other, mundane, components are also used by the Legions while the excess are sold to offset expenses.”
“I see some new chips there, too.”
“Very astute, nephew. Those chips are factory seconds from Al’Nair that have been skimmed from rejection bins and repaired for use.”
The last warehouse toured was a small machine shop where several men were busy machining and assembling hardware components.
“Double heat sinks.” Whispered Mohammed.
“Half of the battlemechs the Arkab Legion fields are Star League grade. Our clan and its septs keep up with demand for some parts, other tribes supply different parts.”
“So we have small shops to reclaim or manufacture needed components?”
Uncle Ahmed nodded. “In 2497, the Von Rohrs were thoughtful enough to deliver unto our hands three regiments of battlemechs. Allah struck down the invaders.”
“And our people eventually gained more machines.” Added Mohammed, “We keep them as treasured weapons, handed down from father to son, assuring our survival.”
Uncle Ahmed was pleased. “You have learned much, young nephew. Would you like to meet your cousins now?”
Mohammed nodded. “That would be nice, Uncle Ahmed, but I’d really like to go outside for a while.”
Uncle Ahmed stood silent for a while. “So would I, young Mohammed Bey.” The two left the workshop and headed to the waiting limousine, adjusting their robes and goggles. Young Mohammed Bey smiled as he sipped his water.

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 3:57 am 
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General Loose Cannon
General Loose Cannon

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Location: Motown
Wow a fellow junk collector.I like this guy already. :D

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 4:17 am 
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Major
Major

Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 346
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Very good writing as always. You are starting to rival Grey's writing for popularity, with me anyway.

I like the depth that you put into each character and scene, really does open up a whole new world.


I'm hoping that you might be able to answer for me if possible.

Previously in the printed novels Kuritan mechs were sometimes descibed as being "Kuritan Tan" in color, yet in the FM, the Arkab Legion is almost the only unit I can find that uses Tan as their 'official' color scheme. I believe the Galdeon Regulars may also use Tan occassionally.

Do you know of any other Kuritan Units that use a Tan scheme ?
What type (RL nationality) names would the Arkab legion mechwarriors and AS Pilots have ?
Would any have Japanesse (sp?) type names ?

Which BT universe planets do they come from ? Were they directly in the path of the clan invasion.

What common types of mechs do they pilot ?

HR


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 4:31 am 
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Major
Major

Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 346
Location: Melbourne, Australia
can you expand on the terms clan and septs for me please ?

HR


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 6:17 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Highland Ranger,
I'll have to admit that I have read very few of the BT novels -the first novel I read in the early 1990's almost turned me off to BT as it made the Clan warriors (Jade Falcon) sound like snooty whiners.

I managed to borrow some of the Wolf Dragoons novels and they were less offensive to me.

In my present campaign, the battlemech figures I have sport paint schemes used by the Afrika Korps in WW2. I use more of a mustard base color with brown or green splotches. I use airbrushes overall, mixing my own acrylics and inks.
Kuritan Tan may be the shade of khaki worn by Imperial Japanese soldiers during WW2.

The Arkab Legions use what camouflage reflecting the areas they defend. I would guess that the Genyosha and other "modern combat" units would use camouflage too.

The majority of my unit uses common Arabic names, although there are a few members with European based names (Nikopol, McDonald) as well as common Japanese names (Nitta, Maeda). During a short stay in Satalice (FRR), I recruited fleeing mercenary remnants from FRR, FC and FWL units.

My character is in 3052, the only Azami world to be taken is Camlann, which fell to Clan Ghost Bear after savage fighting with the 4th Arkab Legion. The majority of the remaining Azami homeworlds are relatively safe from the Clans, although Tukayyid had to be evacuated. Despite all the fighting, Tukayyid could be resettled.

From some research, these are Azami worlds:
Arkab (DC)
Albalii (DC)
Algedi (DC)
Al Hillah (FRR)
Al Na'ir (DC)
Dabih (DC)
Deneb Algedi
Camlann (DC/GB)
Markab (FS)
Tukayyid (FRR)

Possible:
Al Jubaylah (FWL)
Sadalbari (DC)

Additional information:
Azami heirarchy differs on each planet. Some are fundamentalist Wahabi Shiites as on Algedi and Camlann. Others are more reformed as on Markab, Dabih, and Al Na'ir. Most are somewhere in the middle.
More traditional Arkab culture centers among the various Tribes. Tribes are made up of clans and clans have individual families, the larger families are sometimes known as septs.

Arkab equipment breakdown:
Overall- Star League 50%
Light 45%
Medium 45%
Heavy 5%
Assault 5%

After Tukayyid:
Star League/Upgraded 60%
Light 35%
Medium 35%
Heavy 15%
Assault 15%

The Arkab Legions specialize in fast/fluid tactics so they prefer fast light and fast medium mechs in their formations. The most common battlemech in the 8th Arkab (my unit) is the Crab-27 (Star League specs, modified):
Code:
 BattleMech Technical Readout

Type/Model:    Crab CRB-27Az
Tech:          Inner Sphere / 3050
Config:        Biped BattleMech
Rules:         Level 2, Modified design

Mass:          50 tons
Chassis:       Hollis Mark 1A Standard
Power Plant:   250 Magna Fusion
Walking Speed: 54.0 km/h
Maximum Speed: 86.4 km/h
Jump Jets:     None
Jump Capacity: 0 meters
Armor Type:    Paulina Heavy Ferro-Fibrous 
Armament:      
  1 ER PPC
  1 ER Large Laser
  1 Medium Laser
Manufacturer:  Cosara Weaponries
  Location:    Northwind
Communications System:  Garret T11-b
Targeting & Tracking System:  Garret D2j

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
==Overview:==
     The Crab has been an Arkab favorite for centuries. The 8th Arkab, using its unit connections to various cottage industry suppliers, have been able to make an interesting and potentially deadly variant.
--------------------------------------------------------
Type/Model:    Crab CRB-27Az
Mass:          50 tons

Equipment:                                 Crits    Mass
Int. Struct.:  83 pts Standard               0      5.00
Engine:        250 Fusion                    6     12.50
   Walking MP:   5
   Running MP:   8
   Jumping MP:   0
Heat Sinks:     14 Double [28]              12      4.00
 (Heat Sink Loc: 1 LA, 1 RA, 1 LT, 1 RT)
Gyro:                                        4      3.00
Cockpit, Life Supt., Sensors:                5      3.00
Actuators: L: Sh+UA+LA    R: Sh+UA+LA+H     15       .00
Armor Factor:  169 pts Ferro-Fibrous        14      9.50
 (Armor Crit Loc: 7 LT, 7 RT)

                          Internal    Armor
                          Structure   Value
   Head:                      3          9      
   Center Torso:             16         24      
   Center Torso (Rear):                  8      
   L/R Side Torso:           12      18/18      
   L/R Side Torso (Rear):              6/6      
   L/R Arm:                   8      16/16      
   L/R Leg:                  12      24/24      

Weapons and Equipment    Loc  Heat  Ammo   Crits    Mass
--------------------------------------------------------
1 ER PPC                 RA     15           3      7.00
1 ER Large Laser         LA     12           2      5.00
1 Medium Laser           CT      3           1      1.00
--------------------------------------------------------
TOTALS:                         30          62     50.00
Crits & Tons Left:                          16       .00

Calculated Factors:
Total Cost:        4,607,000 C-Bills
Battle Value:      1,203
Cost per BV:       3,829.59
Weapon Value:      1,264 / 1,264 (Ratio = 1.05 / 1.05)
Damage Factors:    SRDmg = 19;  MRDmg = 13;  LRDmg = 7
BattleForce2:      MP: 5,  Armor/Structure: 4/4
                   Damage PB/M/L: 3/2/2,  Overheat: 0
                   Class: MM;  Point Value: 12
Further data on the 8th Arkab Legion/Cluster will be forthcoming in "Footnote."

Cheers,

MB
(Editted for added info)

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


Last edited by Mohammed As `Zaman Bey on Mon May 03, 2004 6:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2004 7:21 pm 
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Master Tech & Major Scrounge
Master Tech & Major Scrounge

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Location: Salt Lake City Utah
Another excellent story Mohammed! :D

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 2:09 am 
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The Last Boy Scout
The Last Boy Scout

Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2001 8:00 pm
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Location: Innsifil, Ont., Canada
Yes another excellent installment. This one really gives us some background.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 3:04 am 
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Warrant Officer
Warrant Officer

Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 113
Location: Aiea, Hawaii
I believe Arkab worlds are scattered throughout the Inner Sphere, but the worlds that could be called the Azami Confederation are found only in Draconis Combine space. It is from these worlds that the Arkab Legions are from. While they are not nor never were a unified political entity, they are bound by Culture, Religion, and their past conflict and eventual alliance with House Kurita. This is written up in the Draconis Combine House book, pages 117-118.

Vaidom


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 4:14 am 
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Major
Major

Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 346
Location: Melbourne, Australia
MB,

thank you very much for the information. I appreciate the time you have taken to respond.


HR


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:36 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Algedi, 3034
The sun blazed overhead, taking up two-thirds of the white sky. Five Bedouin riders approached the gully at a slow trot, raising wisps of dust that hung in the stifling, still air. One rider moved forward to a circle of sun baked rocks and slung his rifle, peering slowly about the flat plains before dismounting. Two of the other riders sat in their saddles, laser rifles at the ready, scanning the surrounding lifeless terrain. They were clad in voluminous cloth from head to foot, the sun being far too harsh for exposure for long periods of time. Dark filters screened the constant light from their eyes. The dismounted man stooped over and moved the dust-covered caprock.

“I say it is not possible.” Muttered one of the riders.
“I am certain.” Replied another, “There may not be tracks but there was movement in this area.”
The man on the ground knelt at the hole he had uncovered, reaching his arm into it. “Aya, that would not be good, brother.”
One of the riders shifted uneasily, las-rifle resting across his pommel.
The man on the ground straightened, sneering. “Someone has drugged this well.” The others snapped to full awareness, their eyes scanning their surroundings, weapons raised. They formed a circle about the smallest rider.
“What is the nature of the drug?”
The man uncovered a datapad strapped to his wrist. “Not completely sure but it appears to be a powerful sedative with a solvent binder to float at the top of the water.” He sniffed his hand, “I would say that the drug would have turned to vapor in several hours without a trace.”
One of the riders whispered something and three of them fired at a spot not more than seven meters away. Small puffs of dust leaped as the las-rifles clicked and whined, their capacitors recharging. A sheet of sand and dust erupted at the location, causing a horse to panic and rear, the rider fighting at the reins. Out of the cloud emerged a shadow, submachine gun spraying the cluster of riders. Horses screamed in fear and pain, a rider crumpled in his saddle as the others leapt clear of their mounts. The man by the well raised his las-rifle and fired. The figure flinched, dropping his firearm.
A blade appeared in the stranger’s good hand. The closest rider had tugged his own curved shamshir (also called a scimitar) from its sheath and easily deflected the other’s attack. The teen member of the group drew his sword and belt blade, moving to flank the would-be assassin.
“Mohammed, stay clear!” shouted the leader. One guard held his las-rifle at the ready while the other tended the fallen man.
“But…”
“Stay clear, lad!”
The wounded attacker lunged for the youth. Ahmed reacted a second behind him. The teen parried with his short jambiya, the steel rasping as he spun to the left, his shamshir removing the attacker’s good arm below the shoulder. As Mohammed spun away, turning to face his opponent, he saw the headless, one-armed corpse, stagger another two meters before falling. Uncle Ahmed stood behind the dead man, panting, his blade still raised for a second strike.

“Tahis will be alright,” mumbled Saba, Tahis’ older brother, “the bullet clipped his arm and he fell over, spraining his ankle.” Uncle Ahmed nodded, still frowning over having to destroy one of the horses. Of course, he was bothered by a lot more. They had stripped the dead man’s body and its torso was covered with expensive, ornate tattoos. Under his tinted faceplate he was clearly of Japanese descent, in his early twenties.
“Yakuza.” Growled Uncle Ahmed. “He could have been working for anyone but someone told him about our clan’s well.”
Saba spat on the corpse, “We would not have detected the drugged water if my brother hadn’t been suspicious.”
“Aya,” replied Tahis, wincing as he sat in the saddle, each movement causing some pain. “The unbeliever waited until the last moment to poison the well –waiting for our approach.” The group nodded –spotting a single enemy on the horizon was not unusual among those who rode over the vast plains and deserts.
It was Saba who spotted the small patch of darker sand -sand not yet bleached by the constant sun. The difference was too subtle for anyone but the best tracker to notice.
“This one has all of his fingers,” added Uncle Ahmed, “obviously trying to prove himself.” He suddenly began to laugh, joined by the others.

There was a lot of commotion at the starport as Uncle Ahmed escorted Mohammed Bey to his shuttle. “What is going on?”
Uncle Ahmed chuckled, “Oh, the usual, people are always fascinated by the mishaps of others.”
“Oh? Has there been an accident?” he glanced at a corner, near the restrooms. There were a crowd of people and several security officials. There was much muttering, many questions and more than a little laughter.
“Not quite.” Replied Uncle Ahmed, slyly, “Not an accident at all.”
As they passed, the teen could not resist peering through a gap in the crowd. His face turned slightly pale.

As the shuttle roared on its climbout, Mohammed Bey tried to close his eyes. He bit his lip and sighed, wondering how long it would take to forget what he had seen. Through the gap between nosy spectators and puzzled security guards he viewed a tattooed corpse with its head and arm removed. The severed arm and head rested in its lap but someone had taken the time to stuff the corpse’s genitals into the slack, lifeless mouth –a traditional Bedouin warning. There was also a parchment note on the wall, written in fine Arabic script: “He bit off more than he could chew."

(Edited to correct spelling, grammatical and other errors.)

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


Last edited by Mohammed As `Zaman Bey on Fri Apr 30, 2004 12:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:49 am 
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The Last Boy Scout
The Last Boy Scout

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Location: Innsifil, Ont., Canada
Nasty. I look forward to seeing where this goes.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 29, 2004 1:32 pm 
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Master Tech & Major Scrounge
Master Tech & Major Scrounge

Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2002 8:00 pm
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Location: Salt Lake City Utah
:lol: Creative.

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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2004 5:03 pm 
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Freedom Fighter
Freedom Fighter

Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2002 8:00 pm
Posts: 3483
Location: Ft Lauderdale Florida
You and Grey are the reason i come to the fanfic section when i manage to make it back here. There are others i check out and am seldom disapointed by, but only two names (well three, and Mac doesn't do fanfic here so much anymore) mean instant quality.

Keep it up :D

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PostPosted: Mon May 03, 2004 5:36 pm 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Quentin, 3035
“More tea?”
Mohammed Bey nodded, unable to answer with his mouth full of noodles. Uncle Ahmed filled his small ceramic cup with steaming green tea.
Hong Fat’s was busy that evening. It was a weekend and many people were out tonight, the streets on the city were crowded with people looking for entertainment after a week of hard work. Uncle Ahmed was on planet negotiating a wholesale purchase of various materials for a neighboring clan. He also managed to procure a large amount of salvaged equipment left over from the last war. The negotiations went well and Uncle Ahmed was in the mood to celebrate. Deftly wielding a pair of chopsticks, Mohammed Bey was making short work of his plate of Mongolian beef. He wore his academy summer uniform –khaki with olive green trim. The high mandarin collar was decorated with gleaming brass Chinese characters, “Sun Tzu.” His brown belt and dress Tai Chi long sword was draped over the back of the empty chair next to him.
“So, nephew, how do you like Prosperity Point so far?”
The young man shrugged, “Uncle Ahmed, you know how I feel about large, industrial cities.” He sipped his tea. “At least they have a decent place to eat.”
The elder laughed softly, “I know, cities are dirty places with far too many people unable to survive anywhere else.” He smiled as the waiter scanned his credit stick, “Twenty percent.”

Mohammed Bey stood in front of Hong Fat’s. The air was mild and warm. The crowds coursing along the sidewalks an hour earlier had thinned to a trickle. Cars and motorcycles sped by as he waited for his uncle and the two bodyguards to pick him up. A young lady in her teens walked by and shyly returned his bow. She wore a traditional kimono with geta sandals, which clacked softly on the dusty cobblestones as she passed by. Adjusting his fez and white cotton gloves, Mohammed Bey stifled a yawn as he stood under the dim streetlights. Despite the traffic, he heard a muffled scream.

The youth strode over in the direction where he thought the noise originated and peered down an unlit alleyway. At the dark end of the alley was a small panel truck with its rear doors open. Four men were attempting to lift a young woman into the vehicle as she struggled. He could see her kimono through the dim light. “You there!” He shouted, sauntering into the alleyway, “Halt immediately!”
The four men turned as one. They wore imitation leather jackets of similar design, with the same kanji symbol embroidered on the back in metallic thread. “Baka gaijin,” replied one of them, “mind your own business!”
“Release the lady,” sneered Mohammed Bey, annoyed at being called a stupid foreigner by a lowly gangster, “and I’ll let you go.”

The men, in their mid to late teens, whispered to each other and two of them pulled short daggers from inside their jackets and yanked the blades free of their sheaths.
Growling, the young As`Zaman tugged his sword from its sheath and advanced at a run, blade raised. Wide-eyed, the people at the end of the alley froze as Mohammed Bey closed to an arm’s length and flicked his razor-sharp blade, laying open the weapon arm of one of his opponents. “Shoji! The mad foreign devil has wounded me!” The injured assailant staggered back against a building. The other man thrust his blade, which As’Zaman easily deflected, immediately using his free hand to grasp his opponent’s wrist. He spun to his right, unbalancing the gangster, his long sword dipping and draw-slicing the back of the man’s calf. As the dagger clattered to the ground, Mohammed Bey released his opponent’s wrist and let him fall, groaning.

The two remaining gang members released their captive and stepped forward, reaching into their jackets. As’Zaman leapt at them, slamming one in the chest with his open palm, sending him flailing to the pavement. The sword flashed and raked the other’s arm. There was a muffled pop from inside the man’s jacket, most likely from a small calibre pistol. There was the unmistakable crackle of a laser pistol firing, followed by the sound of a pistol striking the ground. Saba and Tahis were at the entrance of the alley, heavy laser pistols ready. “It appears that we cannot leave you alone for a minute.”
The gang members staggered to the back of the alleyway, leaving their weapons. Mohammed Bey carefully wiped his blade with a handkerchief before returning it to its sheath. “Milady, are you injured?” He offered his hand to the young lady who deftly grasped his wrist and expertly spun him about so that his back was to her. He felt cold, sharp steel at his throat. “Ugh, this is so cliché!”
“Well, hero-boy, just relax and climb into the truck –very slowly, if you please.” He felt her pull him backwards. The vehicle’s motor rumbled to life.
“Rather young for a Yakuza, aren’t you?” inquired Mohammed, doing his best to sound bored.
She pressed her blade to his neck. “I would gladly kill you now for what you did to my brother on Algedi.” There was severe anger in her voice, mixed with bitterness, “Lucky for you, Boss Sanada wants a hostage.” Uncle Ahmed, also at the entrance to the alley, nodded in silent recognition. He muttered a curt order to Tahis, who returned a subtle nod.
“Your boss has made a mistake, milady.” Replied Mohammed Bey, “When one of my people takes up a weapon, he is already considered dead.” He closed his eyes and felt her grip on his wrist go limp. The faint crackle of the laser striking her forehead reminded him to hold his breath. He hated the smell of burned flesh.

Algedi, 3035
The pavilion was comfortable, despite the number of tribesmen crowding around the table, enjoying the afternoon meal.
“Another summer at an end, dear nephew.” Sighed Uncle Ahmed, who signaled to a servant. “I have something for you.” He handed As`Zaman a small vidchip. “Watch it on the trip home.”
“Thank you uncle!” replied Mohammed, “I shall remember this vacation.”
“As long as you remember…” started Uncle Ahmed.
“…don’t tell my mother.” Finished As’Zaman, smiling.

The journey home was uneventful. Mohammed Bey waited until he could relax in his private cabin to play the vidchip his uncle gave him. He set up his holovid player and inserted the chip.
It started with a streetside scene late at night. As’Zaman could make out a high-class executive bar located on Quentin. After a few seconds, an expensive limousine pulled up outside the bar and several people got out, clearly an elderly man accompanied by two women and at least four alert bodyguards. As the people in the scene prepared to enter the bar, a small panel truck pulled up and parked next to the limousine. A guard walked over to the panel truck and suddenly began to shout. Mohammed Bey recognized the small truck from the alley just before it disappeared in a white flash.

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Mon May 03, 2004 6:11 pm 
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Freedom Fighter
Freedom Fighter

Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2002 8:00 pm
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Location: Ft Lauderdale Florida
:o :) :D 1920's chicago meets 1850's dodge city meets the middle east meets Kill Bill. Very nice.

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Big Nick, the Chainsaw Assassin
[i]Making Bad News Worse since 1980[/i]
[b]What... There's only ONE of you?[/b]


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PostPosted: Mon May 03, 2004 10:38 pm 
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Master Blaster
Master Blaster

Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2003 2:05 pm
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Location: The Base
This is getting better and better. And to be honest, it started off very excellent. So, in conclusion, wow!

_________________
Je vous aurais bien aide, mais je ne vous aime pas.

Dr. J. Edgarlove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Inferno Gel

"If you're not careful, you'll get us all whacked. Ha ha! Body in a woodchipper." - Phil Ken Sebben

What is inside the silo? Can it fly? A needle in a haystack... To crack the sky!


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PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2004 12:28 am 
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Lieutenant General
Lieutenant General

Joined: Mon Apr 12, 2004 3:54 pm
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Location: Springfield, Illinois
I thought the story started off a little slow, but it picked up very nicely. I am really looking forward to reading what other adventures Uncle Ahmed and his nephew get into! Excellent work!


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PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2004 2:08 am 
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Commanding General
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Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Thanks, guys! Its hard to believe that I'm just doing this stuff as filler between campaign scenarios.

Do you know what's harder to believe? This story line is based on what I did while in high school.

Salaam,

MB

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2004 2:22 am 
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Master Blaster
Master Blaster

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Location: The Base
You are welcome, MB. However, since you showed your talent at writing, you best keep your writings coming.

_________________
Je vous aurais bien aide, mais je ne vous aime pas.

Dr. J. Edgarlove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Inferno Gel

"If you're not careful, you'll get us all whacked. Ha ha! Body in a woodchipper." - Phil Ken Sebben

What is inside the silo? Can it fly? A needle in a haystack... To crack the sky!


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PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2004 3:48 am 
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Major
Major

Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2001 8:00 pm
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Location: Melbourne, Australia
I also eagerly await the next installment. Very good writing.

HR


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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2004 12:33 pm 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

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Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Sun Tzu Academy, May 3036
The team of five cadets leaned over what looked like a large industrial vacuum cleaner with fins. Burnished metal gleamed in the afternoon sun as Cadet Captain Mohammed As`Zaman Bey pried open the access panel. “Bent intake manifold…” His autoratchet whirred, loosening the bolts that held the damaged part. “Didn’t I tell you never to cut power if you have to maneuver?”
“If the silly thing wasn’t so fast,” shot back Cadet Rachel Benhaddad “it would maneuver better.” The team had built the fastest remote-controlled scout vehicle in the school’s history but the year-end competition required the vehicle to be able to negotiate an obstacle course in addition to maneuvering to a half dozen grid coordinates, gathering data and returning to its point of origin. Other teams had opted for conventional wheeled or tracked vehicles but the Azami cadets chose to build a hovercraft that practically flew. Unfortunately, it sometimes traveled faster than the artificial intelligence could react and far too fast for a distant observer with its remote controls.
Cadet Haffez Kamal chuckled, “If the guys in the machine shop finish the supercharger, it will fly.”

Cadet Suleiman Maliq wiped the dirt from the thick ramplate bolted to the frame at the vehicle’s front, “It should take a week to get the controls right.” He carefully cleaned the clear dome protecting the camera lens, “Let me put in the dual-lens system –then it would be like driving.”
Cadet Elias Bahar laughed, “Driving? Nothing scares me more that imagining Cadet Benhaddad driving something that travels almost two hundred kilometers an hour –Ow!”

The mess hall was not as crowded as it usually was –the school year was almost complete, many of the graduating cadets would be visited by relatives who had come to attend the ceremonies. These lucky people would be enjoying meals with their families.
“Cadets, may I sit here?” Cadet As`Zaman smiled as he stood in the aisle, waiting for a reply.
The ranking cadet rose, “Cadet Captain As`Zaman, we would be honored if you would join us.”
“Thank you, Cadet Captain Murom.” Mohammed Bey took his place at the table. Cadet Al Dabab signaled for a server to bring hot tea. “Chai wahid!”

“I saw that missile of yours almost take out a telecomm terminal.” Commented Senior Cadet Zaghlul. “Do you plan to win the competition by destroying the other entries?”
The Cadet Captain sliced his steak calmly, “If it were that simple, Senior Cadet, we’d clearly win hands down.” He paused to examine his meal, “This steak was supposed to be rare.”
“I certainly heard it mooing, Cadet Captain.” Injected Benhaddad, averting her eyes with as she picked at her tossed salad.
Cadet Maliq sipped his tea, “We have almost two weeks to iron out the problems –you shall see.” He adjusted his glasses and snickered, whispering, “Here comes Momtaz.”

Sidestepping through the aisles was a cadet in an ill-fitting uniform. At seventeen years old, Cadet Momtaz Kuyar Bey weighed over one hundred fifty kilograms. He had set a record in demerits due to his insatiable appetite for pastries. Some partially eaten item would turn up in his barracks room at every inspection. He was simply hungry all the time. Despite his social rank and friendly demeanor, he was shunned by most of the other cadets.
Without surprise, most of the table emptied before Momtaz waddled up to it.
“May I…” began the cadet in his near falsetto voice.
As`Zaman stood and bowed, “Please, Cadet Momtaz Kuyar Bey, make yourself comfortable.”
Rachel folded her napkin and stood up, “I have to get my gown ready for this weekend’s ball.”
“What? Did someone actually break down and ask you to the ball, Cadet Benhaddad?” Mohammed Bey smirked.
“I would have asked.” Added Momtaz, smearing a massive glob of butter on a dinner roll. He stuffed it into his mouth before he finished talking.
Benhaddad turned pale “Oh, that’s so nice of you. Too bad you didn’t ask me first.” She picked up her serving tray and swiftly glided away, the attention of many of the male cadets drawn with her.
Cadet Suleiman Maliq leaned over to Mohammed Bey, “Who’s taking her to the ball?”
“Why are you asking me?”
“Uhm, well,” the cadet replied, “I thought you would have asked her.”
Well, I did not,” he responded, slightly irritated, “and if you must know, I do not like to attend those functions.” He stopped himself, aware that he would eventually drift into a ranting tirade on the issue if allowed to.
Chastised, Maliq nodded and bused his tray.
Mohammed Bey impatiently sawed through the steak on his platter. “This has to be medium well at best.” He pushed the charred meat aside in disgust and piled sour cream on his baked potato. He looked up and noticed Momtaz staring at his plate. “Go ahead and take it.”

The Quarters Officer waved Mohammed Bey down, “The Commandant wants to see you in his office.”
“Now what?” The day was not going well for him.

The young cadet stopped in front of a display case and looked at his reflection, making certain his uniform was perfect. Satisfied, he paced to the Commandant’s office door and rapped the teak frame with his knuckles.
“Enter.”
Mohammed Bey sharply swung the door open, marched in, closed the door and marched before the Commandant’s desk, snapping to attention, heels striking together and sounding like a rifleshot. “Cadet Captain Mohammed Hajj ben Maruf As`Zaman Bey, reporting, sir!” he noticed a large plastboard mailing container on the commandant’s desk, it was open.
“Good afternoon, Cadet Captain.” The elderly Draconis Combine officer said, mildly, “Please be seated.”
“Yes, sir.” His mouth was suddenly very dry.
“This package for you arrived today.” Said the commandant, removing his bifocals and massaging his eyes. “Of course, you do have an explanation.”
The cadet nodded, “Yes, sir.” He began, noting that he was allowed to continue. “It is a gift for my uncle –Ahmed Kahman Bey.”
“Ahmed Kahman Bey?” asked the Commandant, leaning forward with obvious interest, “Sun Tzu Class of 3003?”
As`Zaman nodded and breathed a sigh of relief. “Yes, sir.”

Mohammed Bey was thankful that his rank allowed him to have a private room. He carefully put the long package away in his locker and looked forward to taking a shower –He had done more than the usual perspiring on this day.

Wednesday
“Cadet Captain As`Zaman,” remarked Senior Evaluator Otsuka, “I was disappointed with you today.”
“How so, Senior Evaluator?” replied Mohammed Bey, absently.
“While you did succeed in driving the enemy from the field with severe losses, you pressed your attacks in an unusually ruthless manner –sustaining higher casualties than necessary.”
The cadet was tired –he had been running simulator problems since early morning. His next lab concerned him. The robotic scout vehicle needed more work and his mind was clouded with distractions. “I’ll try to be more aware, sir.”
“I know you shall.” Said Otsuka, “You prefer to lead your forces from the front, as practiced by Rommel and Guderian –You get the most out of your troops that way but this morning you tried to turn a retreat into a slaughter.”
“Yes, sir.” Responded As`Zaman, regaining his focus. “I find that style of leading units more comfortable –And they do strive harder.”


“Put it on.” Said Cadet Maliq. He leaned over their hoverscout, tweaking the avionics. “It’ll be like operating a sim.”
“Couldn’t you have at least attempted to make this thing look better?” she frowned at the prototype helmet and faceplate that appeared to be little more than a tangle of colored wires held together with bare circuit boards and electrical tape.
Stifling a laugh Maliq spoke assuringly, “Once you start the turbine engine, nobody will look at you, Rachel.”
“That isn’t the point…” She sat in a weatherworn chair with controls haphazardly attached to its arms. The crude heads up display was linked to the dual cameras in the front of the craft, allowing virtual depth perception. Cadet Maliq spent untold hours working on the controls. All hooked up, she did look like she was about to be executed using an ancient Terran death machine.

The turbine whined and the hoverscout glided over the short grass, kicking up billowing clouds of dust.
“This is so weird.” Benhaddad commented.
“Ease the controls forward, Cadet Rachel Benhaddad.” Said Mohammed Bey, projecting his Command Voice. The craft moved toward the proving grounds’ track, slowly gaining speed. “Do you see the obstacle course?”
“Yes, to the left.” The machine corrected its direction and sped on its way. “I’m getting the hang of this.”
“It’s about time.” Muttered Cadet Maliq.
“What did you say?” The hoverscout jinked to the left and almost tipped over.
“Nothing!” replied Maliq, making minor adjustments to the hardware attached to the chair. “Try the AI collision avoidance setting.”
Benhaddad tapped a button and the vehicle maneuvered along the course, easily avoiding trees, underbrush and boulders.
“Now, slowly raise the velocity.” Said Mohammed Bey, observing the craft through binoculars. “As fast as you want.”
Rachel smiled and the shiny craft shot like a silver cheetah through the tall grass, leaving a satisfying wake of roiling dust.

Mohammed Bey turned. “Cadet Maliq.”
“Yes, sir?”
“I know you want to fit the supercharger tomorrow but the muffler and IR dampener have higher priority –make certain you and Cadet Kamal fabricate them in time for testing.” He was in good spirits but needed to keep the team on track.
“Yes, sir.”

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2004 12:41 pm 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Dear readers,
You are probably wondering where this story is going...






You'll have to wait until next week.

MB

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2004 12:45 pm 
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Master Blaster
Master Blaster

Joined: Fri Nov 28, 2003 2:05 pm
Posts: 2458
Location: The Base
Waiting is the hardest part. However, it does give me some time to speculate what the next installment's specifics will be about.

_________________
Je vous aurais bien aide, mais je ne vous aime pas.

Dr. J. Edgarlove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love The Inferno Gel

"If you're not careful, you'll get us all whacked. Ha ha! Body in a woodchipper." - Phil Ken Sebben

What is inside the silo? Can it fly? A needle in a haystack... To crack the sky!


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PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 2:57 am 
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Loki
Loki

Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 11444
Location: Minnesnowta
I finally took the time to read your first story in this thread...my word....you rock dude....

BTW....add Ankaa to the list of worlds settled by Sunni Moslems.

;)

I'm going to spend some time reading your work dude. I like it.

_________________
Medron Pryde - The Great and Terrible :blah:
[img]http://faileas.greywolf.googlepages.com/WOTD.png[/img]
[url=http://www.pryderockindustries.com]P.R.I.[/url] - The home of BattleTech programs and files
"I'm gonna Tea Party like its 1776." - Medron Pryde
Who is John Galt?


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PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 7:45 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Medron Pryde,
Thank you for your comments.

I took this opportunity to do some background work on the characters in the campaign, although portraying them as high-school aged teens brings up silly anime images in my head. Okay, the phrase "silly anime" is redundant.

The Sun Tzu School of Combat would be the most compatable learning facility with the Arkab Legions' style of combat. The school is less social class oriented, which suits the Azami well. I've taken the liberty to portray Sun Tzu as an Intermediate though High School military academy with potential officers going on to universities after graduation.

As students of the same ethnic background, they would assemble in the dining room (when permitted) and when working on class projects.
All in all, these are your "average" teens who happen to be attending the same academy, a long way from their home (BTW, could anybody tell me where the school is located? I haven't found any references indicating where it is).

I might do a small article on the main characters of the story, a little background and summary after the next installment as this series ends when Mohammed As `Zaman Bey graduates.

Cheers,

MB

PS: This Sunday I play another Battle of Luthien tabletop -anything could happen. Wish me luck... I'll need it.

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2004 12:34 am 
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Loki
Loki

Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 11444
Location: Minnesnowta
It is in the Draconis Combine, but I have yet to see any information on where exactly it is.

I will ask the Writers on CBT and see if they know.

_________________
Medron Pryde - The Great and Terrible :blah:
[img]http://faileas.greywolf.googlepages.com/WOTD.png[/img]
[url=http://www.pryderockindustries.com]P.R.I.[/url] - The home of BattleTech programs and files
"I'm gonna Tea Party like its 1776." - Medron Pryde
Who is John Galt?


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PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2004 8:43 am 
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The Last Boy Scout
The Last Boy Scout

Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 9172
Location: Innsifil, Ont., Canada
I've been off line for a little while. That was another good installment.

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General Brett "Hitman" Coote S.L.M.H., P.H. w/9 Clusters, S.S.B.
S.L.A.F. (Retired)
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2004 4:09 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
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Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Thursday
“Cadets, may I please sit here?” Cadet Captain Mohammed Bey stood waiting with his tray. The table was practically clear of occupants. Cadet Momtaz Kuyar was in the process of systematically devouring the heap of food covering his tray.
“Mmmff.” The hefty cadet motioned with his flabby hands.
Smiling, Mohammed Bey put his tray down, “I’ll interpret that as an affirmative, Cadet Momtaz Kuyar Bey.”
“Miso, rice and a salad today, Cadet Captain? He sounded disappointed.
As`Zaman nodded, “Aya, Cadet Kuyar, I haven’t time for a full meal this afternoon.” He replied, “I’ll have to make up for it later.” He wiped down his hashi (Japanese = chopsticks) and mixed some shoyu and wasabi in a tiny bowl.
“Oh?” Momtaz looked hopeful, “I’ll be in for dinner too.”
Unable to resist, Cadet Kamal shot, “What? I thought you never left the mess.”
“At ease, Cadet Haffez Kamal!” replied As`Zaman, his voice raised, “How dare you address Cadet Kuyar Bey with such coarse familiarity?” It was a rare display indeed.
Haffez bowed his head, “Forgive me, Cadet Captain.”
Mohammed Bey, closed his eyes, “Your rude remark was not aimed at me, cadet.”
Haffez lowered his eyes. “Please accept my humble apologies, Cadet Kuyar.”
The rotund cadet blushed, “Cadet Captain, he was just saying what everybody thinks.”
“That isn’t my point, Cadet Kuyar,” replied As`Zaman, “If Cadet Kamal wanted to correct you, he should have taken you aside, not made his contempt a public matter –that would be the duty of your superiors.”
“But I don’t care…”
“Obviously,” snapped As`Zaman, “but your lapse in discipline is causing others to forget their bearing.” He took a deep breath, “I shall continue this discussion at another time, Cadet Momtaz Kuyar Bey.”
“What did I do?” piped Kuyar.


There was a knock at his billet door. “Enter.”
Cadets Maliq and Kamal peeked in, “Cadet Captain,” began Maliq, “we’re going to Blasters. Wanna come with us?” Instead of the khaki school uniform, the two wore gray coveralls.
“Blasters?” asked Mohammed Bey, “Isn’t that a Gray club?” Setting his pen aside, he looked up at the cadets at the door.
“Uh…yeah…but we’re not Gray.” Replied Maliq.
“Oh, no, we’re not Gray!” added Kamal.
“Ah.” Responded As`Zaman, “tell me why you guys are wearing gray clothes.”
“Um, well, this is what they wear at Blasters but we’re not Gray.” Said Maliq, backing away.
“Really, we’re not Gray.” Assured Kamal, adjusting his glasses.
“I’ll have to pass, cadets, I’ve got plans.” Sighed Mohammed Bey, chuckling, “And I don’t go to Gray clubs.”
“But we’re not Gray.”
Mohammed Bey shook his head as the door closed and took up his pen once again. He thought for a while and decided it would be a good evening for a walk.


“I’ll give you five fourty-five for it and no more.”
“Done.” Replied the shopkeeper, his shoulders sagging. “You know, young man, you are robbing me.”
“I should have my hands up,” returned As`Zaman Bey, “for I am the one being robbed.” He smiled, handing the shop owner a wad of paper currency and coins.
“The very devil must have taught you how to barter, cadet.” Said the elderly man, with a tinge of admiration.
Mohammed Bey hefted the guitar case, it was very light, sturdy and was lined with maroon velvet.
“Perhaps I could interest you in a fine guitar for that lovely antique case?”
As`Zaman smiled, “Oh, thank you, no.” he headed to the door, “I have just the instrument for it.”

Mohammed Bey walked back to the billets. It was late but Cadet Kuyar was on his way off campus. “I didn’t know you played the guitar.”
“Oh this.” As`Zaman replied, “Yes, I’m just learning.”
“I’m going out for a snack,” said Kuyar, “Would you like to join me?”
The Cadet Captain shook his head, “I’ll have to pass, Cadet Kuyar Bey, I’m far too tired.”

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2004 4:16 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Friday
The morning sim training went particularly well. Next year, the cadets would be out in the maneuver field, piloting light battlemechs. At the end of that year, they would be learning to maneuver a lance or more of `mechs, along with vehicles and infantry in exercises. Mohammed Bey looked forward to piloting a battlemech. All of his sim training was coming together and his fellow cadets had no problem taking orders from him. He never ordered a cadet to do anything that we wouldn’t do himself and they all respected him for it.

Noon at the mess was routine. “Cadets, is this place free?” asked Mohammed Bey with a slight bow.
“Please join us, Cadet Captain.” Replied Cadet Benhaddad, moving over to make room for him.
“Thank you, Cadet Benhaddad.” said As`Zaman, seating himself.
“Cadet Captain,” began Cadet Maliq, “the sound and emission suppressor was installed this morning –you will be satisfied with the results.”
Mohammed Bey nodded as he stripped the wrapping paper from his hashi. “Very good, Cadet Maliq.” he mixed soy sauce and wasabi in a small bowl, “Following this afternoon’s testing, I want to be able to relax this weekend.”
“Oh?” responded Cadet Kamal, “What plans do you have this weekend, Cadet Captain?” Cadet Maliq stifled a snicker.
“My Uncle Ahmed Khaman Bey is visiting.” Replied As`Zaman, dropping the bowl of hot sauce into his won ton mein.
“The Vulture?” asked Kamal. “He’s your uncle?”
Mohammed Bey frowned.
“He’s a legend, you know.” Said Maliq, “Among us technophiles, he’s like the supreme treasure hunter.”
“Can we meet him?” asked Kamal “That would be ultra!”
As`Zaman shrugged, “He’s supposed to be here either today or tomorrow. I’ll have to find out what his plans are.” He picked up a won ton with his hashi and ate it.
“Please, please, please!” begged Kamal, who lived and breathed lost tech gadgetry.
“We shall see,” replied Mohammed Bey, “although I thought you had plans to go to Blasters.”
“Blasters?” inquired Benhaddad, “Kamal, tell me you’re not Gray.”
“No!” The two cadets blushed.
“Funny, I saw you and Cadet Maliq in gray jumpsuits last night.” Injected Al-Dabbab, chuckling.
“I saw that, too.” Added Cadet Captain Murom, as he picked up his tray, “The next thing we’ll see them marching in Gray Pride parades and wearing bulbous headgear.”
“Hey!”
Mohammed Bey whispered to Benhaddad, “I don’t suppose you want to meet my illustrious uncle too?”
“Senior Cadet Zaghlul Bey is escorting me to the annual Sun Tzu Academy ball,” she replied in an annoyingly demure manner, “I’ll be far too busy.”
For once, the usually eloquent Mohammed As`Zaman Bey was at a loss for words.


“Power on!” The turbine engine whined to life, the sound evolving into a dull roar as the gleaming machine lifted up on its skirts. “Cadet Benhaddad, cruise speed, run the AI through the paces.” The sleek, mirror finish turned into a sudden blur as the hovercraft sped on its way to the maneuver track. On its side was written in kufic script, “Ifrit.”
“Engage suppression unit.” The hovercraft slowed and the muffled roar became almost undetectable at 100 meters.
Maliq and Kamal danced joyously. Mohammed As`Zaman Bey smiled. He followed the craft with a palmcam, recording the team’s progress. “Run the Ifrit though the obstacle course.”
Cadet Benhaddad leaned forward in the beat-up chair rigged with wires and controls and she grinned from under her makeshift control helmet. The hovercraft twisted and turned along the awkward route then found the open ground and shot across the grassy fields like a silver arrow, too fast to follow.
“Bring the Ifrit home, Cadet Benhaddad.” Mohammed Bey said proudly, switching his palmcam off. “Exemplary work, team!”


Upon returning to his billet, there was a message waiting for him. His Uncle Ahmed would be arriving at a nearby landing site next to the lake the following afternoon. This would be a good weekend after all.

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2004 4:53 am 
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Loki
Loki

Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2001 8:00 pm
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Location: Minnesnowta
Nice...hehehe

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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2004 9:34 am 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
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Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Saturday
“Detail, stand ready!” Mohammed Bey had taken a friend’s place for morning flag raising detail. It was one of the few ceremonies that he actually liked. “Loader, charge powder.”
The artillery crew stood ready as the loader pushed a scoop of black granules down the bronze barrel of the ancient Chinese dragon gun. “Prepare the fuse.” A fuse was inserted into the touch-hole. Once the fuse was made ready, As`Zaman raised his sword. “Detail, present arms! Sergeant, fire.” The sergeant, who held the burning linstock, stepped forward and applied flame to fuse. After a brief shower of sparks, the cannon emitted a short, low roar and recoiled a few paces, enveloping the detail of uniformed cadets in a cloud of gray smoke.


He returned to his room and pulled the plastic bag from his utility pouch. The bag contained about half a kilogram of black powder. “I just have to grind this down a tiny bit.”
It took him about two hours but he was satisfied that everything was perfect. He closed the clasps of the guitar case and slung it over his shoulder.
The campus was like a ghost town, with perhaps one or two other students could be seen traversing the grounds but Mohammed Bey was the only one in uniform. The student parking area was remote as well as small –few were permitted to have vehicles on campus, even less could afford such luxuries. He pulled the mylar climate cover from his turbocycle and ran his fingers over the hand-tooled leather. A gift from his father, it was a classic Usako street turbo, light and maneuverable. The tank and fenders were glazed in ivory with a Rif horseman motif throughout. All the metal portions were plated with gleaming platinum. He keyed his helmet and activated the HUD, the starting motor turning the fans. He finger hit the ignition and a small tail of flame erupted from behind his cycle. He shifted to reduction gear drive and obeyed the on-campus speed limits. As he pulled up to the Torii arch that greeted everyone who first arrived at the academy, he checked the route ahead. People were scrambling to get off the pavement. He switched to ballistic and coursed down the long avenue of cherry trees at 180 kilometers an hour, trailing blue flame.

Entering town, Mohammed Bey again observed the posted speed limits. His HUD indicated an incoming call. “As`Zaman.”
It was Maliq. “Cadet Captain,” he stuttered, “Kamal and I were running a few tests and something happened.”
“What do you mean? Did you break something?”
“Uh, no.” stammered Maliq, “We were tweaking the supercharger and the remote shorted while it was maneuvering on the track.”
“So its on AI?” Mohammed Bey slowed down.
“Yes.”
“It’ll run out of fuel in about half an hour, right?”
“Uh…”
“Right?” He pulled over.
“We filled the tank, sir. We wanted to do a run at full weight.”
“That machine will run for over four hours on a full tank The AI will keep it on academy grounds, correct?”
“There is one little problem.” Added Maliq.
“It’s the lake, isn’t it?” As`Zaman suddenly felt ill. If the hovercraft took off over the lake, it could go almost anywhere.
“Listen,” responded Maliq, “Kamal and I are going after our turbocycles to go look for it.”
Mohammed Bey keyed his tracker, which did not show the Ifrit in its detection range of three kilometers. “Deal with it. I’m not going to let this ruin my weekend.”

As he cruised through town he passed by the Grand Plaza Hotel and spotted Cadet Al-Dabab in his academy uniform. He pulled over, “Cadet Al-Dabab!” he waved, “Attending the ball tonight?”
The cadet shook his head, “Not this year, Cadet Captain.” Replied the teen, “I’m driving a limousine for a friend.” He patted a gloved hand on the sleek black vehicle that he proudly stood beside. “Is that really an Usako?”
Mohammed Bey deployed the kickstand and dismounted, “It sure is.” He paused as about a dozen heavy turbocycles roared by, their riders wearing off-road armor. The golden kanji symbol on the backs of their uniforms looked familiar.
“Hey, I’ve got some time,” Al-Dabab warmed up, “mind if I take it for a short ride?”
As`Zaman checked his chronometer, “Sure, have fun.” He unplugged his helm from his datapad and handed it to the eager cadet, who wasted no time as he sped away.

“What’s he doing?” Mohammed Bey had been standing beside the limousine that Cadet Al-Dabab was supposed to be driving that evening. He had allowed the cadet to borrow his turbocycle over ten minutes ago. His comm unit sounded. “As`Zaman.”
“Nephew, it is Uncle Ahmed!” There was the sound of great activity in the background.
“Uncle Ahmed! How good it is to hear your voice.”
“It is good to hear yours too, my good boy.” He replied, there was confused shouting.
“Uncle, is everything alright?” asked the cadet.
“I was just about to bring that up, my favorite nephew.” He said, “Remember on Quentin, those young men in the alleyway?”
Mohammed Bey suddenly recalled the kanji symbol on the uniforms of the bikers that sped by earlier. “Uncle! A dozen of them in body armor? A golden kanji symbol on their backs?”
“You always amaze me, nephew!” said the elder, “They have managed to sabotage some of my dropship’s systems and are trying to gain entrance.”
“What can I do, uncle?”
“I cannot contact Saba, at the hotel.” Said Uncle Ahmed, “I’m bouncing this signal off the jumpship to contact you.”
“Oh, another discreet operation –no police again.”
“Yes, and don’t tell your mother.”

Mohammed Bey tried to call Cadet Al-Dabab’s commlink. There was a chirping sound from a datapad on the limousine’s driver’s seat. Al-Dabab was not to be found. He tossed his guitar case into the passenger compartment and made himself comfortable in the driver’s seat. The control key was in the panel so As`Zaman started the engine which purred in near silence. The polished teak inlayed dashboard lit up so the teen cadet set the environmentals, and cranked up the bellydance music. Just before he put the limousine into gear, the passenger door opened and closed. Someone had entered the vehicle. “Now what?” He tapped the monitor, a young woman was in the passenger compartment. “Miss, you are going to have to get out.”
The teenaged woman looked straight into the camera, “What did you say?” It was Cadet Benhaddad.
“Cadet Rachel Benhaddad, what are you wearing?” asked Mohammed Bey, shocked by the revealing neckline.
“Johann, is that you? Stop the jokes, already.” She commanded, “Draco Zaghlul Bey will be here at any moment.”
“Cadet Benhaddad, this is Mohammed As`Zaman Bey and I need this vehicle.” Replied the youth, sliding the panel between the driver and passenger open. “My uncle needs help and it will be dangerous.”
“Are you insinuating that I cannot handle danger, Cadet Captain?”
He grit his teeth and punched the throttle, “No time to lose.”

The Union Class dropship “Al Idadah” was under siege. Its internal power had somehow been cut and armor clad figures climbed about the outside, using various cutting tools trying to gain entry. Local defense turrets were unable to challenge the men who used grappling hooks to climb the vessel’s sides. The dropship had set down in a field near a place called Tranquility Park, near the lake. The park area was crisscrossed with small streams so a maze of concrete footbridges linked different sections of the park together.
During the twenty-five kilometer drive out of town, Mohammed Bey was able to contact Saba, who had been at a theatre and had his commlink turned off. He was enroute with his armored rover and small arsenal.

“I can’t believe what you did to your hair.” Commented Mohammed Bey. “And that dress –you are almost falling out of it.”
“This is the latest fashion in Luthien, I’ll have you know.” She shot back, not giving an inch. “And I didn’t wear this for you.”
Mohammed Bey pushed that last remark from his mind and tried to formulate a battle plan in his head. He didn’t have a sword -the only weapon he had at the moment was in the guitar case. “Cadet,” he called, “there is going to be shooting. –Are you sure you wish to get involved?”
“I am certain, Mohammed Bey.” She replied, “I shall be a mechwarrior and take similar risks.”
“Very well,” He nodded, “Open the guitar case.”

The female cadet opened the case and her jaw dropped. Her well-manicured fingers lighted traced over the fully restored Algerian flintlock made of acaccia wood inlayed with geometric figures carved from camel bones. The Damascus steel barrel looked like metallic wood with a golden bead as the forward sight. “You aren’t going to face slug throwers and lasers with this antique.”
“No, you are.” Replied As`Zaman, opening the vehicle’s sun roof. “We don’t have time to switch positions and I’ve seen your range scores –you are a much better shot that I am, Miss Benhaddad.”
“You may call me Rachel, you know.” She replied, “How do you work this thing?”
“In the case, there is a leather bag under the barrel.”
“Yes.”
“That is the propellant in powder form.”
“Measure about a teaspoon’s worth of powder and pour it down the barrel.”
“How?”
“Cup your palm, like in measuring salt.”
“Oh.”
“See the strips of cloth? That acts as a seal when you push a round down the barrel -You will note that there are one dozen sabot rounds in addition to the round lead balls. The sabot rounds will be more stable.”
Mohammed Bey cut his headlights and used the night vision HUD the limousine was equipped with. Sure enough, he could see the Al Idadah sitting in the darkness, with the flashes caused by cutting tools and torches twinkling in the distance. He slowly pulled up into Tranquility Park’s main gate. They had crossed half the park at a slow crawl before Rachel was ready to fire.

Miss Benhaddad had located another set of night vision goggles and with her elbow resting on the limousine roof, recited the routine. “Hammer at half cock…prime the pan…close the frizzen… full cock and aim.” She pulled the trigger and the ancient musket flashed. She held on target for the one and a half second delay as the weapon belched flame and smoke.
Three hundred meters away, it appeared as if one of the bikers scaling the side of the Union decided to take a dive off the side of the dropship. Laser beams flickered and slug throwers popped, firing in every direction. Mohammed Bey realized that the musket he had a reach farther than the modern weapons carried by the bikers. He smiled. “Reload, Rachel, they’re firing blind.”

“Measure powder…ram wadding…” She wondered how the Rif horsemen loaded and fired such weapons while riding.
“Rachel, did you know that the powderbag you are using is made from a camel’s scrotum?”
“Ewwww!” That was not the kind of information she needed at the moment.
Mohammed Bey noticed that Cadet Al-Dabab’s commlink was chirping. He discreetly turned it off.

Benhaddad had taken six shots with four confirmed kills. The bikers finally took notice of where the firing was coming from and had taken action –they moved to the opposite side of the dropship.
As`Zaman’s commlink sounded, “Yes?” It was Saba -he was on his way. Mohammed Bey would have been a bit more relieved if he didn’t notice the dozen more turbocycles heading toward the park. “Rachel, we have company coming.” He chose to halt the reinforcements at a choke point –the main gate. “Hold on.”
He hit the throttle and sped toward the main gate, all lights off and running silent. The lead cycles slowed when their collision detectors began flashing. Mohammed Bey turned his collision detection system off –all those alarms distracted him. He put the limousine into six-wheel drive and braced for impact. The other cycles in formation would have their proximity detectors turned off. He grinned.
“What are you do-“
The HUD distorted momentarily and the limousine suddenly pitched upward and rolled onto its right side, accompanied by a cacophony of screams, shrieking metal on metal and multiple impacts of turbocycles as they struck the limousine, the gate, the wrought iron fence and the pavement…

“Rachel, are you alright?” asked As`Zaman, pushing the debris of the impact airbags away. “Rachel…”
“Oooh…my hair!” She crawled from open the sun roof, still clutching the musket.
Mohammed Bey climbed from his door window, carefully looking about for movement. The moans of the wounded came from all directions. “Rachel, we have to find a safer place.”
The sound of a firefight came from the direction of the Union. With the intruders driven to one side of the vessel, the crew was able to send a sally force out to catch the gang unaware. A familiar vehicle approached, it was Saba’s rover. As`Zaman took Benhaddad’s hand, “I ruined your gown and your evening, Rachel, will you ever forgive me?” He looked at her face, stained with smoke and framed by her disheveled hair and handed her a clean handkerchief.

“You! The baka gaijin from the alley!”
Mohammed Bey stepped in front of Rachel he saw a figure stagger through the park’s main gate. He clutched what appeared to be a laser pistol and struggled to raise it.
There was a familiar muffled roar coming from a nearby stream.
Mohammed Bey looked at his wrist crystal. “Ifrit!”
The wounded biker turned as the gleaming silver hovercraft rose from the stream and glided up the bank. The Ifrit’s AI steered it toward the freedom of the main gate.

As`Zaman waited until the last second before he used the remote on his datapad to cut the hovercraft’s power –and its ability to steer, causing it to go ballistic through the main gate. The biker attempted to leap aside but was struck full on by the quarter ton Ifrit, the body landing with a wet crunch. The hoverscout tumbled and struck the limousine, sending shiny metal fragments in all directions.

Saba arrived and handed the teens assault rifles. He looked at the carnage then back at Mohammed Bey and shook his head. A trio of turbocycles slowly made their way to the main gate area. It was Cadets Maliq, Kamal and Al-Dabab. Mohammed Bey waved and smiled. He retrieved the guitar case, powder and bullets from the limousine and carefully put the musket away and slung the case over his shoulder. He offered his left elbow, “Cadet Rachel Benhaddad, would you do me the honor of accompanying me to meet my Uncle Ahmed?”
“Cadet Captain Mohammed As`Zaman Bey,” she replied, taking his arm, “I could think of no better way to spend an evening.” The two walked through the moonlit park at a leisurely pace, taking time to enjoy the view of the lake.

The loading ramps of the Al Idadah were down, and a trio of forklifts loaded the excess turbocycles abandoned and otherwise strewn about the park onto the dropship. A small recovery vehicle was needed to load the limousine. Saba was at the front gate, he had taken care of the police patrol vehicle that came by and a small crew was repairing the main gate, washing down the pavement and putting a new coat of paint on the fence.

Cadet Maliq was depressed, the Ifrit’s engine was in need of a total rebuild. Cadet Kamal eagerly poked through the wrecked turbocycles, he hoped to find components he could use.

By the time they reached the Al Idadah, Mohammed Bey had removed his coat and draped it over Cadet Benhaddad’s shoulders. The evening air had suddenly grown cooler and he still considered it unseemly for a young lady to wear a strapless gown that bared so much skin. Together they walked into the repair bay where technicians removed the dents and scratches from the limousine.
Uncle Ahmed stood by a worktable, giving orders to his men. He saw the teens approaching and smiled. “My good nephew and a princess!”
As`Zaman placed the guitar case on the work table, “This is Cadet Rachel Benhaddad, we bring a gift for you, Uncle Ahmed.” Cadet Benhaddad executed a curtsey that a duchess would envy.
“A gift? Because they are so rare, I happen to love gifts!”
“Help me with this, Rachel.” The two opened the guitar case and stepped back. The elder’s jaw dropped.
He picked the musket up and shouldered it, “A fine weapon,” he said, “a fine weapon indeed but these markings on the stock are not of our people.”
“That may be so, uncle” replied Mohammed Bey, “but if you look closely at the lock, you will note that it is marked TOWER with the Common Era date, one thousand six hundred and thirty two.” He removed a multitool from his belt and removed the lock. “Behold!”
Old Ahmed sat at the table and examined the inner workings of the lock. His eyes began to tear. “No greater gift has ever been given to this old man.”

Rachel leaned over to Mohammed Bey and whispered, “What is it?”
“The lock mechanism was once broken and the original steel part replaced with a portion cast of bronze.” Replied As`Zaman, “That bronze part bears a stamp –the vulture symbol of my mother’s and my uncle’s clan when they scavenged materials from their home desert on Terra, fourteen centuries ago.”


EPILOGUE
Early Sunday morning…

Cadet Captain As`Zaman Bey escorted Cadet Benhaddad to the entrance of the women’s billets, his coat still draped over her shoulders. “One more time.” He said.
“I didn’t feel well, so I left the ball early.” She recited, “The limousine was stolen, recovered later and the insurance company will reimburse Cadet Zaghlul Bey the rental.” She smiled. While in the Union, she had taken the time to brush her hair into the long raven tresses that Mohammed Bey was accustomed to.
“Cadet Al-Dabbab gets a nice turbocycle for his silence,” said Mohammed Bey, “Cadets Maliq and Kamal get to use the workshop on my uncle’s Union to rebuild the Ifrit in time to compete next week.”
“I’ve never heard of the Kanga design.” Commented Benhaddad.
As`Zaman shrugged, “Neither have I. At least everyone got something out of this.”
“Oh? Do you think so?”
The Cadet Captain did not like the sound of that at all. “Why didn’t you say something while in the Union?”
“Simple, there wasn’t anything I wanted from Ahmed Kahman Bey.”
Despite the chill of early morning, Mohammed Bey began to perspire. “Alright, I’m ready to barter.”
“Barter? What ever for, my silence?” she asked.
“What else is there?”
“I’ve just had the most fun I’ve ever had in my life, you idiot!” she replied, “There is no way I’m going to tell anyone what we did tonight because if I did, despite your stuffy demeanor, you’d be surrounded by girls.”
Now he was confused. “Ah! You are mocking me.”
Benhaddad began to laugh softly, “No, Mohammed, I want to help you.”
“Help me what?” he asked, turning to leave, “Discuss my personal flaws in front of the women’s billets at two in the morning? I feel better already.”
“Wait.” She started to follow.

He spun on his heel, “Stop.” He raised a finger. “Miss Rachel Benhaddad, if you follow me, I shall have difficulty respecting you. So please…you may return my coat tomorrow.” He was about to turn, instead he gently took her hand and bent forward, raising it to his lips and kissed it. “I shall ever be grateful that you shared this evening with me.”
He turned and strode purposefully along the tree-lined path. It had been a long day and all he wanted to do is get to his room and sleep.

Cadet Benhaddad sighed and walked up the stairs to the billets and carefully opened the heavy front door. As she entered the building, somebody turned the entranceway lights on. The nightwatch desk was surrounded by young ladies, a couple in uniform, a dozen or more in robes. What were they waiting for?
“She’s wearing his uniform jacket! Oooooh!”
Rachel smiled despite the situation and muttered, “Oh, crap!”

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2004 1:07 pm 
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The Last Boy Scout
The Last Boy Scout

Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 9172
Location: Innsifil, Ont., Canada
Good installment. Interesting, a love interest for our hero?

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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2004 1:21 pm 
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Major General
Major General

Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2003 10:24 pm
Posts: 850
Location: Capital Region, New York
I'm really enjoying these stories; I think they're well-written and very interesting. I can't wait to hear more. :)

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--neko128

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"The cookie told me to!"
"Cookies aren't always right, you know."
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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2004 2:04 pm 
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Cubefarm Warrior
Cubefarm Warrior

Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2002 8:00 pm
Posts: 1385
Awesome work Mohammed!

Great stuff, Your stories have great depth to them and it is cool that your writting about the Arkab Legion and the people from their worlds, your doing a great job fleshing them out.

The one question I do have for you it's kinda off-topic but I thought a Shamshir & the Scimitar are two totaly different swords ?






Edited for spelling and other bad stuff

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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2004 5:49 pm 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Brigoon,

Thank you for your comments. While there was good information on the Arkab Legions and their capabilities, I haven't seen any stories about them. RPing a member of the 4th Arkab has given me the opportunity to answer questions I've had about the units in addition to detailing a significant minority population that functions within the Draconis Combine.

"Footnote," of course, is the ongoing campaign with occasional flashbacks.

"Travels With Uncle Ahmed" provides background information on the Arkab Legions and the Azami people as seen through the eyes of a young nobleman. These stories end where "Footnote" begins.

If anyone has any questions about the Arkab (a Japanese corruption of the word "Arab") or the Azami, feel free to ask. I'm not the ultimate authority on the subjects but I have done extensive research and have compiled significant amounts of data.

The word scimitar is an English corruption of the Farsi (Persian or Iranian dialect) shamshir.

Peace be upon you,

MB

_________________
[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2004 6:19 pm 
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Cubefarm Warrior
Cubefarm Warrior

Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2002 8:00 pm
Posts: 1385
Quote:
Brigoon,

Thank you for your comments. While there was good information on the Arkab Legions and their capabilities, I haven't seen any stories about them. RPing a member of the 4th Arkab has given me the opportunity to answer questions I've had about the units in addition to detailing a significant minority population that functions within the Draconis Combine.

"Footnote," of course, is the ongoing campaign with occasional flashbacks.

"Travels With Uncle Ahmed" provides background information on the Arkab Legions and the Azami people as seen through the eyes of a young nobleman. These stories end where "Footnote" begins.

If anyone has any questions about the Arkab (a Japanese corruption of the word "Arab") or the Azami, feel free to ask. I'm not the ultimate authority on the subjects but I have done extensive research and have compiled significant amounts of data.

The word scimitar is an English corruption of the Farsi (Persian or Iranian dialect) shamshir.

Peace be upon you,

MB
Well it is Praise that is earned not just given :)

Thanks for the info about the Shamshir. Evil English always messing things up :o

Now give us some more stories !

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PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 5:25 pm 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
The Summer of `36
The student barracks were almost empty. His luggage packed and personal effects on a small shipping pallet, Mohammed As`Zaman Bey inspected his room once more before taking the long walk down the two flights of stairs to the entrance of the men’s billets.
Saba, one of Uncle Ahmed’s bodyguards, waited wearing a white business suit and maroon fez. “Sahib Mohammed Bey, may I carry your bag?”
Nodding, young As`Zaman hefted the duffle bag from his shoulder to Saba, who slung the canvas bag over his back. “Thank you, Saba.” Replied Mohammed Bey, adjusting his summer uniform, “How is Tahis?” he began walking along the wide, tree-shaded walk.
“My brother is fine, Sahib.” Returned Saba, “He is aboard the Al-Idada.”

The morning was still and pleasant, the skies clear. Mohammed Bey loved to travel, he considered the Al-Idadah more than a dropship, it served as his home for every summer for the last four years. He pondered his future. The next year at the SunTzu School of Combat would be his last. All he required was his battlemech certification and at the age of sixteen, he could begin training with the 4th Arkab Legion reserve elements on Dabih.

Saba’s armored rover was parked in a special marked stall near the shelter for the spaceport shuttle. As Saba loaded Mohammed Bey’s luggage into the vehicle, As`Zaman heard a voice call him.
“Cadet Captain As`Zaman!” It was Cadet Benhaddad.
“A moment.” Mohammed Bey told Saba. He approached the shelter and saw that Rachel was wearing a medium length white cotton dress. “Good morning, Cadet Benhaddad,” greeted As`Zaman, “are you waiting for the shuttle?”
“Good morning, Cadet Captain,” she replied, with a slight nod. “I have two more days before I return to Dabih. I’m seeing some friends off.” She fidgeted a bit, “Uhm, you aren’t just leaving, are you?”
Mohammed Bey nodded, “Yes, but the Al-Idadah won’t be lifting off until tomorrow night.” He thought for a moment, “We usually have dinner in town before we depart –Would you like to join us this evening?”
Rachel smiled, “Oh, that’s very nice of you, Mohammed Bey, I would love to.”


The belly dancers swirled with serpentine grace, their tinkling bells and brass zils matching the beat of the doumbeks. Sitting on piled cushions, Mohammed Bey closed his eyes and enjoyed the smells and sounds around him. The roast lamb with couscous was passable, the pastilla with pigeons was outstanding. Hajji’s served Moroccan cuisine to their general customers but since the young As`Zaman began attending the nearby academy, they had occasional visits by Uncle Ahmed who always demanded a feast.
“Cadet Captain,” said Cadet Benhaddad, “Would you like more mint tea?” She hefted the porcelain kettle.
As`Zaman nodded, “Please.” He placed his glass under the kettle and Rachel topped it off with hot, sweet tea.

“So, will you be returning to Dabih tomorrow?” asked Benhaddad.
“I’m not sure.” Replied Mohammed Bey. He turned to his uncle, “That is a good question, Uncle Ahmed, where do we go from here?”
The elder stroked his gray-streaked beard and looked up thoughtfully. “I have nothing really pressing this summer, perhaps a visit to Algedi and Al Na’ir…”
“You know,” added Mohammed Bey, “if we make our last stop in Dabih, Miss Benhaddad could travel with us when we return here.”
“Really? Would that be alright?” asked Rachel.
“We’d be making the trip anyway,” said Ahmed, “It would save a lot on travel for you.”
A waiter brought a tray with small cups of kaveh, the thick, hot coffee popular among the Azami. Mohammed Bey placed a sugar cube between his teeth and sipped his kaveh –It was very strong.


Cadet Captain As`Zaman Bey escorted Cadet Benhaddad to the entrance of the women’s billets. The building was dark, many of the rooms being empty and it was late. “I must say,” began Mohammed Bey, “your company this evening was well appreciated, Cadet Benhaddad.”
“You are very kind.” She replied, “Thank you for inviting me –I had a wonderful time.”
As`Zaman stepped back and bowed, “I guess we shall meet again in August, when we return to Dabih.” He cleared his throat. “You shall be contacted with our departure schedule.”
“Thank you, Cadet Captain, said Rachel, “my parents will be grateful.”
“Peace be with you, Cadet Benhaddad.” Said As`Zaman softly as he turned to leave.
Benhaddad was about to say something but stopped herself. “Peace be with you, Mohammed Bey.”

Algedi
The Elder Council Pavilion was a large Bedouin tent erected near a small oasis. Around the pavilion were smaller dwelling tents, each decorated in the subtle patterns of the various ruling clans of the planet. One of the larger tents bore the stylized vulture pattern of clan Kahman. Beneath shades stood dozens of horses and camels being given water by attendants covered from head to toe in off-white cloth. What vehicles were present were concealed beneath dwelling tents, the traditions of the Elder Council being that the chieftains meet with minimal taint and distractions of so-called civilization –even the guards’ modern weapons were concealed.

Mohammed As`Zaman Bey listened intently to the heated debate. The dozen sheiks present represented the major clans of Algedi. They assembled to decide the fate of an errant family –A family that allowed a spy to enter the exclusive Azami region. The spy was killed after he had drugged a well, wounded a horse and wounded an Azami bodyguard. Each of the elders had received a full, detailed report. The investigation took over two years and confessions obtained. While outsiders would conclude that punishing those involved would be the logical way to settle the issue, tribal law held sway here.
While he was only the nephew of one of the Algedi elders, he wore the white-trimmed fez of an imam, one capable of judging in accordance to the Holy Q’uran as well as tribal law.
“We cannot allow the other clans to interfere –This is a problem our clan shall solve alone.” Said the elder from clan Najjaf, his tone adamant.
“Your clan failed in upholding its laws.” Replied Sheik Yusuf Kahman, elder of his clan. “That failure almost allowed an outsider to learn the most ancient secrets of our people.” Many of the other elders nodded in agreement, much to the consternation of the representatives of clan Najjaf.
The elder of clan Yasbani, a man of 97, raised a hand. “What says our young imam, As `Zaman?” He asked, “What guidence does our holy book say?”
As`Zaman stood and bowed to the assembly, “Venerable elders,” he began, “I must agree that clan Najjaf must apply its laws to the family in question.” He raised his hands to silence the others. “It is forbidden for an outsider to enter our lands –Those who made that trespass possible are just as guilty. The outsider caused injury and loss to one of out clans –Again, those who allowed the outsider to enter our lands are to be held responsible.” He frowned and closed his eyes. “Lastly, the stranger poisoned a well –Perhaps the most serious crime among out tribal laws.”
“My people did not poison that well!” the Najjaf elder shouted, knowing the tribal laws.
Sheik Yusuf leaned forward, pointing, “Those who allowed the stranger to do his crimes also bear the guilt!”
“Elders!” interjected Mohammed Bey. “The traditions of our people are ancient and we hold them inviolate. The scriptures given to us by the hand of Allah supports our sacred traditions.” He looks at each elder, “Who among you shall deny those truths?”
“Imam As`Zaman, nothing you say is disputed.” Said the Yasbani elder. “How do you judge?”
Shaking his head, “It is not for me to judge, worthy elder.” Mohammed Bey began, “our laws and holy writings have already judged. Clan Najjaf must apply its own laws to the offending family.”
The members of clan Najjaf bowed and covered their faces.

“In accordance with the laws of clan Najjaf, all men of the offending family above the age of 16 are to be killed.” Recited As`Zaman, “The women and children shall be absorbed into other Najjaf families.” He continued, “If clan Najjaf is unable to take in the remaining family members, the rest shall be absorbed by clan Khaman, the offended clan.”
The elders nodded in silent agreement.

Sitting at dinner in his uncle’s tent, Mohammed Bey did not have his usual appetite. “Are you having misgivings on your ruling, young nephew?” asked Uncle Ahmed.
“None, my uncle,” Replied the youth. “I have compassion for those who must die as well as those who are tasked with slaying their kin.”
Uncle Ahmed sat in thoughtful silence. “You make me proud, Mohammed As`Zaman Bey. You have upheld the laws of our people and have impressed the elders of this world with your judgement.”
As`Zaman nodded quietly, “The strength of our people is in our laws as passed down through generations. I could have made no other judgement. Leniency would have won friends among the Najjaf but laxity in upholding our laws would eventually divide our people.” He sighed, “The punishment serves to warn others within our clans of the risk people take for a few coins.”

The Al-Idadah was securely docked with the jumpship Manara. Mohammed Bey sat in his berth and meditated, preparing himself for jump. He cleared his mind of its conflicts, thinking more of the traveling he had ahead of him –The cargo holds were packed to capacity with Star League grade components manufactured on Algedi, ready for delivery to Arkab, to the Arkab Legion Supply Distribution Center. From the Arkab Legion, the Al-Idadah would accept damaged components and parts to be repaired, rebuilt or recycled in the numerous workshops scattered throughout the Azami Worlds.
Because the Azami sector of Algedi was closed to outsiders, the majority of the secret workshops were located on that desert world. The Yakuza intruder that was discovered and killed two years earlier was searching for those workshops –That spy was the first casualty of a secret war between the Azami and the Yakuza.

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[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 7:09 pm 
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The Last Boy Scout
The Last Boy Scout

Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2001 8:00 pm
Posts: 9172
Location: Innsifil, Ont., Canada
Excellent. More under tones of Azami lfe. Another good installment. May I suggest that you start a fresh tread for these storys.

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General Brett "Hitman" Coote S.L.M.H., P.H. w/9 Clusters, S.S.B.
S.L.A.F. (Retired)
[img]http://www.heavymetalpro.com/countries/ ... da-red.gif[/img] [img]http://www.heavymetalpro.com/countries/can-ontario.gif[/img]


Last edited by Hitman on Tue Jun 01, 2004 1:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon May 31, 2004 8:58 pm 
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Commanding General
Commanding General

Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 10:05 pm
Posts: 1471
Location: Kingdom of Hawaii
Hitman,

Good idea! The next installment will begin in a new thread.

Cheers,

MB

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[i]And Allah turned back the unbelievers in their rage; they did not obtain any advantage, and Allah sufficed the believers in fighting; and Allah is Strong, Mighty.[/i] from The Koran, 33rd Sura- The Clans


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PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 6:14 am 
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Recruit
Recruit

Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 6:10 am
Posts: 1
hey frndz m looking for more info about ahmed. plz help....

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[url=http://forum.urduworld.com/f188/gehri-b ... ad-113282/]Ishfaq Ahmad[/url]


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PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 10:19 am 
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Supreme Mugwump
Supreme Mugwump

Joined: Wed Dec 06, 2006 3:42 pm
Posts: 3183
ahmed?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1uwOL4rB-go&feature=fvst

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typos and spelling-mistakes are property of the finder. english is not my mother-tongue.


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