Line Cmdr. Sundeelia: Remembrance, Part 7, “Confrontation”
Editor’s Note: The Sirian people are telepathic. I am attempting to convey their “speech” through the use of italics. They actually use more in the way of concepts and visions, but for our slower minds here words will have to suffice…
The young second commander looked at the stern pale angular features of Lord Delos’ countenance with some concern. He had known the head commander for some time, and had known of him for longer, the brilliant tactician and strategist, his uncanny way of knowing exactly where they would find the enemy ships; yet he knew better than to idolize his complex self-contained superior. Still, something was off…he actually feared for his commander’s sanity as he quietly observed the head commander sitting on a bench staring at the floor and lost in thought. He…he was so somewhere else…
Jon? His commander’s deep telepathic voice resonated through his mental body. It was the quality of the voice and presence that defined Lord Delos from every other member of the large crew.
Aye, sir? The second commander waited patiently until the other man’s attention returned to the room around him from wherever or whenever he had been in meditation.
Then he braced his legs to steady his body as the head commander’s orders flowed like a great overpowering river through his mind. What? Why? Where? He shook his head at the audacity of the plans. You want me to take command, sir?
Where will you be, sir?
Commander deAir, I will be the bait!
Then young deAir stepped back involuntarily as Lord Delos looked up, two intense green eyes fixed on him intently. There was a steel will behind that quiet set face. Jon could feel it. There wasn’t time to argue; the fleet was approaching the disputed edge of Sirian space.
You are well-trained, Jon. You’ll know what to do! There was a pause as the head commander looked down at his slender hands. His long white fingers were gripped together tightly. Lord Delos slowly pulled his hands apart and shook them gently. Guess I’m a little tense!
A little tense, thought Jon, carefully blocking his mind to the Head Commander. Ah… I would be too if I were going where he was…
The young commander almost blushed, but he was too well-trained…trained by the very man who was now standing up and moving across the council room towards him. He stood at attention, hoping his nervousness didn’t show up on his pale face. Lord Delos merely nodded at him, gave him a penetrating look, reminding Jon of the eyes of a mountain eagle his brother had brought home long ago.
Yes, sir! I will see that your orders are carried out.
Good. Now I must get ready!
Jon stepped out into the passageway behind Lord Delos. Sir, what ship do you plan to use?
An ironic smile briefly crossed the stern face. My brother’s old scout ship will do for this trip.
Jon was appalled, once again. That old wreck?
Yes, Jon, that old wreck; it will do nicely for this journey.
Jon was embarrassed that his thoughts had leaked out of his highly trained consciousness, but Lord Delos had his ways of deciphering frequencies that still baffled the young man. He snapped to attention as the lord turned to walk towards his private quarters.
By the way, Commander DeAir, I have been honored to serve with you!
With those last parting words, Jon saluted his head commander’s back, knowing Lord Delos would feel his emotions without any effort.
And I, you, sir!
And the young commander spun quickly on his heels and strode off towards the command deck to convey the wishes…last wishes…of Lord Delos.
Delos entered his apartment. It was sparsely furnished, just a single bed, a shelf for personal belongings, a small closet, and an extra blue uniform hanging from a hook on one bulkhead. There were no personal mementos, no photos, and no images of the gods. There was nothing to indicate that this was the quarters of the head commander. Delos liked it this way, simple, clean, unadorned. All that he owned was at home in Sirust. All that he loved and cherished… was at Home. Would he ever see it again…and knew the answer. No.
He sat down on the hard bed. Long ago, he had learned to sleep anywhere, even on cold, hard ground; the bed didn’t bother him. If he had needed physical comforts they would have been provided him. He was letting everything go…
Entering into a deep meditative state, Delos reached out to his Father, Lord Chananda in Sirust, the great capital of Sirius A. Distance and time made no difference in this in-between place; there was no time or space here. Father…
I AM Chananda. What can I do for you, Delos?
Delos felt the comforting Presence of his Father surround him and relaxed slightly. You know I love you, Father…
Yes…I know what it is you plan to do, Delos.
I knew you would. I just could not say anything that last day…
Tears began to fall down the pale stern face as his Father’s great love softened his resistance…
You must do what you need to do. I know you do it for the people, for the survival of our worlds.
Delos paused a moment. Father, send the Angels to me. I feel that I will have need of them today…
They will come on the Wings of Eagles, my son. I love thee!
Some hours later, the preparation was ready. The slower old scout ship moved out away from the cloaked fleet. It was headed to an old outpost on a tiny isolated rock of an isle in disputed space. The only person on the scout ship was Lord Delos. Commander Jon deAir watched anxiously as the old ship moved across the dark depths of space. And then there were explosions of light as an entire flotilla arrived simultaneously out of hyperspace to surround the aging vessel! Jon’s jaw dropped in astonishment, and then he pulled himself together. It was time for action!
Uncloak and attack, all ships! Uncloak and attack!
It was a complete surprise as the Sirian fleet attacked the enemy for Lord Delos had seen to it that every ship in the Sirian fleet was updated with the latest cloaking devices from the Pleiadians and the Ashtarian fleets. All except the old scout ship, that is…
The Sirian fleet had surrounded the area of the old outpost and immediately proceeded to burn their way into the opposing vessels with laze guns and cannons. It didn’t take long until the dark sea of space was glinting with burning hulls of enemy ships floating aimlessly around. It had been a complete rout! And the Sirian fleet had only lost a few men, fewer wounded…except?
The crew on the command deck shouted aloud in triumph. The uproar silenced when the commander stepped forward to the scanning station, signaling for quiet. Where is the scout vessel?
Everyone knew he was really wondering, Where is Lord Delos?
Sir! There it is! The scanning tech zoomed into the viewer bringing an image onto the large screen in front of the command deck. The scout vessel was listing. There was a great hole in its outer hull.
Any life signs?
The medical monitor looked up from his instruments and shook his head. No, sir…sorry, sir!
Commander deAir straightened up, his jaw tightening even as he felt tears starting up. For the first time, he felt the weight of command heavy on his shoulders. It would be his duty to report to the Head Commander’s family, Lord Chananda and his son, Aman Kumara.
It was a victory, a great victory, sir!
Commander deAir looked at the man who had spoken up with a hard glance. We lost a great man here today. Never forget it!
He turned away and strode out of the command deck. Let the Fleet know we’re going Home!
A couple of days later, the Commander found himself standing in a lovely private garden taking tea with Lord Delos’ father, Lord Chananda. Jon found the older man quite imposing despite his slender build and quiet demeanor. He sensed a powerful Presence behind the physical façade of the lord.
How did it happen, Jon? Lord Chananda was casual in his address; he had known Jon for all of his life and was quite determined to put the man at ease.
He set a trap, my lord, and…and he was the bait. He knew they would come if he was alone. And they did. They could not resist getting their collective dirty hands on…
Jon clenched his fists trying to control the emotions that were fighting to the surface.
Lord Delos loved you like a son, you know. The soft inner voice cracked his disciplined shell; Jon sunk to one of the benches, tears flowing down his angular cheeks.
Why did he do it, my lord?
The answer surprised Jon. To give us time…
Time? Jon looked up at Lord Chananda with a mixture of emotions crowding his features, disbelief, grief, and a touch of anger?
Yes, Jon…time. Lord Chananda got up and began to stride around the garden. You will see…it’s in the planning stages.
Jon, you’re tired. The older man strode up to Jon and shook his shoulder lightly. Go home now…to your mate and children. You haven’t seen them yet, have you?
No…I wanted to speak to you first.
Lord Chananda nodded and with a wave dismissed the commander out of the garden. Go home!
As the commander entered the portico to find his way through the huge mansion to the entry hall, he nearly ran into Aman…the priest son of the Commander. Aman.
Jon could sense a deep underlying current of mixed emotions in this man; like himself, the son could not understand the why of his father’s death…what he thought was a needless death.
Aman… The other man turned and stared at the commander, his mind clearly preoccupied with other matters. Jon surged on… If it will help, the Commander…Lord Delos knew that the enemy was massing a great fleet on the borders of our space. They were planning a huge attack, even on this city…
How did he know? The priest’s finely boned aristocratic face was frozen with shock.
Jon shrugged. He had his ways. He just knew…
With that terse reply, Jon snapped a salute and marched out of the front door passing a startled guard. He was glad to leave that house of mourning. He felt the priest staring after him, but he didn’t look back. Aman may have been Lord Delos’ son, but he didn’t know his father well. And now he would never know him.
Less than a month later, Jon stood among the crowd who had come to gather to watch the latest series of suttee, widows all, who following the ancient custom of Sirius, were now to walk voluntarily into the pyre fires of their husbands. There were five pyres lined up in the great park at the edge of the city. It was a sad place, a place of sorrow today for one of the great women of the city was to take her last walk, the Lady Anya, wife of Commander Delos.
When Anya appeared in the break in the tightly packed crowd there was a distinct hush. Jon looked around; all eyes were fixed on the tall slender figure dressed in a simple white saree. There were no jewels bedecking her body, only a wreath of flowers around her neck. Her pale blonde hair hung loosely down below her narrow hips. She was like a virgin coming to a sacrifice…but she was not a virgin or a sacrifice. She was fulfilling her duty after a month of preparation, fasting, and prayer. She was already not of this world… Jon sensed the same determination and strength of will that he had witnessed in Lord Delos. She climbed up the steps to her pyre and sat down on the bench provided there. Her face was quiet, set, silent. She stared out over the crowd, her eyes seemingly fixed on something they could not see. The priests approached each of the pyres, holding up in their right hands a flaming torch. Anya ignored them. The fire started up, catching fast in the dry wood. Her clothes were soon alight, but still Anya did not move. She went to her death as Delos did to his, without fear.
Jon thought, they were a good match, this Anya and Delos, a good match, indeed. For a moment he wondered where Delos was now…for he knew that such a man, such a courageous man would be born again…but where?
The priestesses began to sing hymns of prayer, redemption, forgiveness, and eternal love for the Creator as the five figures disappeared into the smoke and fire. The people sighed. They knew that these five would be reborn, again, but what would happen to those who did not return from battle? There were no answers today. The crowd began to break up and return to work or home.
And so it is done. Jon strode away, heading towards his home where his children and his mate were waiting. Life continued and he knew that he would meet Lord Delos someday, perhaps in another place, another time, but they would meet.
Where was Delos? Well, I will end this part now. Many of you who have been reading along already know that answer, Arcturus.
Peace to all,
I AM Sundeelia, Line Cmdr., of the Pleiadian Flagship, The White Winds.
P.S. For anyone finding issue with the practice of suttee, the immolation of widows, please read part 5 of this Remembrance series. Part 5 addresses the ancient Sirian culture and many of its customs.
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