3 Days Later.
Gigaer never really thought about the afterlife. Different groups had different ideas, and they all seemed equally plausible, but when you spend so much time with the metaphysical aspects of one reality, you tend to not want to deal with others. One thing that Gigaer didn't expect was the pain. Being dead was surprisingly painful, and that blinding light shining in his face was annoying.
Gigaer's eyes rolled grudgingly to the front, straining against the fog in his mind to focus back on reality. There was a single bright light blasting in his face, and his head was slacked limply backwards. Gigaer used the pain screaming from every part of his body, moving his head forward and taking slow stock of his situation. Firstly, he was definitely alive. His head was pounding, which meant he probably had a minor concussion, and the rest of his body was aching, which meant the rest of him was equally pummeled. There was an odd numbness to the pain, as if it where echoing down a long corridor.
As he tried to move sharp pangs called out from his right bicep, his wrists and ankles. Slowly turning his head and bringing his eyes back into focus, he noticed not only were his hands and feet bound with metal handcuffs, and an I.V. was embedded in his arm, feeding a sinister-looking black liquid straight into his veins from a nearby stand. The light came from overhead, so bright that he could not identify the source. He was strapped to a simple metal chair. Beyond his cone of light was nothingness. An empty black void that he could not see through no matter how focused his gaze.
Calling upon his simple mental and breathing exercises, Gigaer brought the rest of himself back into the here and now. He fought against what he could only assume was an anesthetic feeding into his arm, but its hold was powerful and the fog was still thick.
“We see you have learned a thing or two about the power of your will. That drug would keep an Amarr xenophobe sedated in a room full of Matari politicians.” Said a booming voice from the darkness. It seemed to come from every direction and was heavily distorted. It was low and godlike, booming through his body and making his head pound. Gigaer felt nausea creep from his bowels but managed to speak.
“Who are you? Where am I”
“Questions. The beginning of wisdom.” The voice chuckled softly. “ Understand you are but a baby among a pack of wolves. We sniff at you because we are curious, but do not try our patience. We will ask questions and you will answer them.”
Gigaer tried not to show weakness, but the drug made that impossible. “I don't understand. Who are you?” A sharp and explosive pain raked through his body, causing him to let out a small scream in surprise. The surge only lasted a second, and it was unlike anything he'd ever experienced. It was as if all if his body's pain receptors were switched on for a moment, then turned off. A blinding, nameless pain that he didn't care to experience again. However his captors did it, Gigaer did not wish to provoke that action again.
“ WE will ask, and you will answer. Now, what is your name?" Boomed the voice, commanding Gigaer to obey. There was no malevolence in the voice as far as Gigaer could tell. Whoever it was took no pleasure in causing pain.
“My name is Gigaer.”
“What is your clan?”
That one question spoke volumes to Gigaer. He came into the Wildlands because someone knew more about his legacy than he did. Whoever that was hired Eyes to track him down and send him into nullsec, screaming a code over and over into the void, attracting nothing but trouble. Pirates didn't take capsuleers prisoner, and neither did slavers. Too much trouble. The pieces of memory began to drag back into place. The last attack was by the Thukker tribe, and the Thukker were not known for operating in the Wildlands. Every attack prior to that was by the Angel Cartel. Were his captors Thukker? Were the Thukker the ones who hired Eyes to bring Gigaer into the Wildlands? His gut told him this interrogation was not what it seemed. “Prano.”
“No point. If what your agent said it true, you know more about me then I do.” Gigaer said with as much confidence as he could muster. Even the captive could learn about his captors if he was clever and observant. “You wanted me here, so here I am.” Another wave of agony hit him, this time lasting a little longer. The drug feeding into him amazingly didn't numb the pain at all and he hid it as well as he could, only letting out a small grunt. Gigaer's head felt like it was about to explode, and his heart was racing. He figured another jolt like that could cause an aneurysm.
“Your mind is quick, and so is your mouth. We may just be Thukker pirates, and if we are, then you're no use to us. So, why are you still alive?”
Gigaer had nothing to go on. Who would know about him? He thought about it for days with no clue, and now if he didn't answer the question right, he would probably die. Panic poked at the edges of his mind and his body was past the breaking point. The only thing he could think about was the image of his mother, and the odd expression on her face that Gigaer could never identify... until now.
Trust. She trusted her son to do what needed to be done. His father trusted him to find his way, and Eyes and his benefactors trusted him to survive. Now, Gigaer had to trust himself. He called upon all his training and exercises, reaching past his physical self and out into the darkness.
“Because you're not Thukker. Because like me you're something the world has either forgotten about or believes is dead and gone.”
The I.V. beeped and the flow of drugs changed from black to white and the fog in Gigaer's head quickly began to diminish. The blinding light above him calmed and other soothing lights came on in the room, fully illuminating what looked like a small and empty viewing room. Shutters on the wall opened, revealing space, and a vast shipyard. In front of him a metal door slid open and an ancient Matari man walked in, wearing robes that could almost be called regal. The old man walked up to Gigaer and waved his hand through the air, signaling to a wall-mounted camera Gigaer had not noticed before. The restraints and I.V. disengaged and Gigaer stood slowly to meet the old man's gaze. “You're not Thukker. You are The Elders.”
A grin formed on the old man's face that could almost be called sinister.
Beyond the Splat Zones (5-1, Tri-slosher)
12 hours ago