Chasing the Dark Star

I'm not just an engineer

"I'm not just an engineer..."

"No... nope... no, no, no. No, Bolin. Okay? My answer is no." but Bolin leaned closer into the cabin, his big green eyes screaming please. He leaned in further, his eyes reflecting on the white face plate. "Dammit, Bolin, I said no!" he exclaimed rather loudly. Bolin half tripped, half drug himself into the cabin, whining as he went.

"Aw, come on Khan. It'll be fun." he moped over to Khan's desk, plopping into his chair and spinning till his feet hit the wall before returning the other way.

"Fun? Bolin, you want to break into the cargo hold." Khan was none too pleased with Bolin's incessant whining over the situation. And Bolin had been overly upset by his refusal, as they both could clearly see. Bolin planted his feet, stopping the chair and slumping down, letting his arms dangle at his sides.

"It's not breaking in. It's more like... staying at the museum after hours. Nobody cares so long as everything's where it was in the morning." he raised his shoulders and put on his best smile, to no effect.

"The authorities care! When have you ever even been to a museum?" Khan stepped back and sat on his bed, removing his helmet. Like everything else on the ship, it was white with the Future Industries logo stamped on the front. He set his helmet on the bed and ran his fingers through his hair.

"That's not the point." Bolin waved his hands in front of him to change the subject.

"Then what is the point?" Khan said impatiently. He was already twenty minutes behind on his sleep and was eager to get some before the docking. But Bolin was full of energy, and rather insistent on doing this together. He danced around in the chair, trying to distract him.

"Think of all the cool stuff that's in there!" he said enthusiastic. He points at Khan's chest, more specifically to his standard issue guard vest. "Maybe there's some of that new hard-plate ballistic riot gear in there. I heard from Ling in maintenance on the Ox station that that stuff could stop a grenade. Well, the armor would be fine at least, but maybe not the guy inside." his eyes drifted to the monitor as he spoke.

"And what does Ling know about riot gear? That guy is freaking nutcase who doesn't get planet side enough. The vacuum will make you crazy Bolin, but I think it might be to late for you." he picked a piece of lint of his blue uniform. Security gear was one of the things on the ship that didn't have to be white, something Khan enjoyed greatly. "And so what if there's cool stuff in there. It's like a museum, remember? Look but don't touch. And besides, I know for a fact that the hold is full of supplies for the station when we dock. Not high tech gear for elite troopers." he pointed at Bolin, emphasizing his point. "Maybe there's some tranquilizers in there to calm you down." Bolin lit up, straightening and looking at Khan.

"So you'll go?" he asked. But Khan just shook his head, rubbing his tired eyes.

"No, Bolin, I won't." he said it with a a sigh. He was tired of this. He was tired of Bolin, to an extant. Yes, they were friends, but the man was taxing.

"You know, if you had some of that gear you would be a better guard." Bolin stated, like it was some great revaluation or that it wasn't a purely dumb statement.

"That's just it Bolin, I'm just a ship guard. I'm not some super trooper from the SSF out in the rim fighting pirates. My job is to walk around the ship and make sure idiots like you get enough attention so you don't break something." he stated it, rather than said it.

"HEY, I am a great engineer." Bolin stated in factual tone. "I haven't had a citation in over two months." he waved his finger at Khan as he said it. But Khan just laughed.

"Yeah, and what was your last citation for?" he asked, knowing the answer. Bolin crossed his arms and leaned back. "Come on Bolin." he grumbled something and Khan leaned forward, cupping his hand over his ear. "I couldn't hear you, what?"

"Tampering." Bolin stated again, dejected, picking a loose strand from his gray uniform.

"Tampering, that's right. And what was it with? No wait, let me guess. You were trying to mess with some system that's out of your pay grade." he finished with a hint of frustration.

"No..." Bolin interjected, "I was just... trying to reconfigure the heating valves for the aft section showers so I could have hot water." he spins around, talking like it was no big deal. He hated the aft section water. It was always luke warm.

"Bolin, you shut off life support for the aft hold and caused a rupture in the cooling unit for the starboard engine. And how does that not count as an accident?" Bolin spun back around, inching the chair closer to Khan, scrambling his legs on the slick floor.

"That wasn't supposed to happen. If Chan hadn't tried to stop me we'd all have real hot water. But... now we don't have any. And nobody got hurt." he shoved his finger in Khan's face. "And when was the last time you tried to do something helpful?" Khan smacked Bolin's finger away and shoved the chair back.

"The only reason they keep you around is because you are the only one who can get the stuff you break working again. So, are we done with this sneaking into the cargo hold thing? I'm not in the mood to look at fruit right now." Bolin stood up quickly, determination on his face.

"We aren't going to thathold, we're going to the automated hold. That's where they keep the good stuff." he said like khan was an idiot for not knowing. Khan smacked his forehead.

"Of course we are, I'm such an idiot. Why would we go to the one hold, when the other has security check doors, to which we don't have clearance, and cameras. Just... how does this possibly seem like a good Idea to you?" sometimes Khan worried about Bolin, this was one of those times where one has to ask if he was really sane.

"I could get us past the doors. And we are only two hours from dock, there's no one watching the cameras. We'll already be reassigned by the time they ever bother to check the footage, if they check the footage." Bolin walked around the room, pointing and gesturing.

"And the doors?" Khan regretted asking as soon as the word left his mouth. Bolin smiled wide.

"I can hack them." he stated, smiling as Khan stood up and put his hands on Bolin's shoulders.

"You... are... an... engineer. You are not an electronics master hacker type guy. You are a member of FICE, not the tech group. Bolin, you can't hack anything, let alone security doors." Khan's tone resembled that of a doctor's who was giving his patient bad news. But Bolin continued to smile, saying two simple words.

"Mai Li." Khan pulled back, narrowing his eyes.

"Bolin..." he said slowly.

"Mai Li, I know you have been talking to Mai Li in navigation. I know you like her." Khan pulled his hands back, tilting his head to one side. Why would he know that?

"Bolin... how do you..." he couldn't form the sentence.

"I hacked your terminal on your last patrol. And you are going about her all wrong." Khan felt his eye twitch upon learning of the breachof friendship, let alone protocol.

"Bolin... you hacked my terminal? You... you looked at my private files? You came in here when I wasn't here?" Bolin's smile faded, sensing he may have made a mistake. He was sure this was going to work, up until this point. He stepped away from him, shrinking ever so slightly as Khan stepped closer. His hands shaking as he reached towards Bolin. "You..."

"I can hook you two up!" he squeaked. He didn't really think he could do it, but trying sounded better than dying. Khan stopped and Bolin took his shot. "I eat with her at lunch, I can put in a good word. Get you guys from digital to physical." he said enthusiastically. Khan stepped away. He had been trying for months to get her to look at him as more than just a guard or a friend. "Yeah, I can help you here."

"If?" Khan said, trying to restrain himself, knowing the price he would demand.

"If... you go with me to the automated hold to see what's in there." Bolin's voice raised a little with each word. But Khan just sighed.

"Fine. I'll help you end your career, but if we get caught, I'm saying you blackmailed me. I wont lose my job over this." Bolin almost squeaked with excitement, pumping his fist. "Wait, why are you so eager to get in there?" Bolin stopped and looked at the door, an exaggerated motion as he cupped his hand over his mouth.

"I heard that Mr. Sato... the Mr. Sato, called for this ship personally and loaded some special cargo last time we fueled up." Khan just sighed again.

"Man, where do you hear this stuff?" it was far from the first crazy theory Bolin had had.

"I didn't just hear it, well I did hear it from a few people, but I checked the logs and we're running at least four tonnes heavier than before we fueled up."

"Wow, you can read." he knew Bolin might actually be right for once, but he wasn't going to let him know that.

"Just go." Bolin muttered as he pushed Khan out the door. He had a secret to find.

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