Read Tarik: Entry Level Warfare Online
Authors: K. A. Kerr
By K.A. Kerr
Copyright © 2015 K.A. Kerr
All Right Reserved.
To the Trippel Family and their lost son. Your welcoming compassion towards myself and my family will not be forgotten. I pray that your son has found peace.
Tarik took the pulse rifle in his hands.
The GR-638 was a
built for close quarters
. His preferences chip transferred all his relevant information and changed the stock and sights to suit his firing style perfectly.
"I'm not sure that I like the weight of the front sight post." He said. "What else do you have that
"Depends on how many points you have available to spend." The dealer stated.
The dealer was a Sornain, a squat bear looking creature with deep red eyes, standing on its hind legs at about four feet tall but weighing over three hundred pounds. Known for their
was sure that he would show him the most expensive weapon he had, with the intention of either setting him up to be robbed after leaving or taking all of his points. Tarik needed something reliable but fairly priced if he was to survive as a contractor on the outer territories.
"Just show me."
said, trying to get out of this shady area while he could.
Tarik could handle himself but when dealing with other species it was best if you didn't get attached. As most species did not have any sense of morality, well no type
. That always seemed to be the problem with aliens, everything about them was alien. Tarik thought it amusing just how wrong early humanity was about other intelligent beings. Nearly every
was broken, the things they thought impossible were not just possible but likely. When dealing with the numbers involved in the universe anything was possible, compound that with an infinite timeline and anything will happen.
The dealer grabbed a rifle from under his counter; it was like no other he had ever seen before. The rifle was flat black with a wide point midway through the stock that he couldn't fit both his hands around. There was no front sight post and the trigger was shaped like a bell the size of his thumbnail. It was familiar and strange at the same time. It felt more like a blend of both a hand blaster and rifle more than one or the other. It was almost like it was designed to be both. The black lacked any shine, it was frightening, and he felt like he could
in it. It was like he was staring into the void itself. As he was inspecting the rifle he heard the door open behind him.
Glancing back he saw a Gorrex walk in; similar in size to a
the Gorrex resembled a mix between a wolf and a chicken. With his feet displaying three toes with 5 inch talons, it walked to a position several feet behind him and slightly off to his right. His two fangs yellowed as he glared at
No doubt the owner had
grabbed the rifle trying not to show any concern. Animosity between Gorrex and
was still high even though their war had ended nearly forty years ago. The Gorrex were first encountered a century back. During the first encounters Gorrex acted as if humanity were nothing but nesting insects. The Gorrex did not even acknowledge
on the first outlying systems, they simply
around them setting up their own bases, when they finally moved to a populated
world and killed several people humanity started with warning shots. After that the Gorrex finally agreed to meet. One of the only species to display outright hostility towards
their leader dismembered our ambassador then ate him on video, which he sent back to the fledgling
systems on all networks. Humans having little presence besides the five systems they claimed as settlements and the three mining systems for resources went to war with guerrilla tactics quickly wearing down five small Gorrex systems. When the five systems closest to the
were abandoned the
quickly asserted their claiming rights. The
doubled in size before the Gorrex could even confirm it was the
who were attacking them. Now with only eleven systems the Gorrex were in a tight spot. As the war raged on neither side was able to push the lines beyond that. The Gorrex still viewed our tactics as cowardly and bemoan their fallen systems. Ten years after the peace treaty had been signed the Kami started their raids, now allies of opportunity the
and Gorrex fight together within the
As his preferences implant sent the rifle his details he visually searched for the rifle on the network. Only a partial match returned but his shock was too much to keep his mouth shut.
"This is a Kami rifle?" Tarik exclaimed.
The shop owner stared at him with his beady eyes unsure how to take his new speech pattern. Figuring his question was rhetorical he looked behind
to the Gorrex.
"Maybe if the
had more courage and fought on the front lines more of you would
the weapon of enemy.” the Gorrex half growled.
Ignoring the comment,
went on the network to find out more about the rifle. The rifle fired both energy pulses and traditional projectiles via an improvised ammunition port. The improvised ammunition port allowed the Kami to fight in nearly any environment, if you were on a rocky world simply put in some rocks, if you were on a comet just put in some ice, in either case ammunition was literally everywhere. The customizable velocity setting would allow you to fire in low-to-null gravity without launching yourself; they also helped to ensure you wouldn’t
a hull. The rifle also had some defensive abilities; a null field sweeping shield capable of stopping any projectile in a thirty inch radius. When active it may look like you're walking with an open umbrella but it was effective enough to not be made fun of. This was complemented by the self-destruct, after the shield had absorbed too much energy it would become a suicide bomb for the soldier helping to wear down the overwhelming
. Crude but deadly Kami rifles were rare, not as rare as Kami bodies which would set you up for life if anyone ever managed to recover one, but rare enough.
"How much?" He asked the dealer.
thousand points." the dealer said, expecting to find out just how much this robbery might net him.
Tarik was shocked it did not cost more; the shield should have cost him fifteen thousand easy. He was either being baited or there was something wrong with the rifle that he couldn't expect the dealer to disclose.
Tarik performed a quick diagnostic of the rifle everything checked out. It even had a full charge on the shield. He did a net
to see if the diagnostic could have been tampered with. Turning up nothing he saw an article about the safety hazards involved with Kami rifles. Diving deeper into the article he found the reason most suspected that few rifles had ever been recovered. The best theory was that the self-destruct would not only detonate because of energy absorption but also in the proximity of too many coded enemies. How many enemies and the priority given to each race remains a mystery but taking this rifle to a market while activated would be a very bad idea.
Probing the rifle he could see that some of the base code had been
but by who and what the new code said he would need several hours to decode and find out. Kami troopers were stupid grunts as far as anyone can tell; operating alone and securing small areas until they could be backed up by larger patrol ships. What happens after that is a bit of a mystery as once it has been claimed by the Kami it was either destroyed in their retreat or masked by the shield the patrol ship operated.
“What will it be
? Either purchase it or leave, as you can see I have other customers.” the dealer stated flatly.
“I’m not sure I can afford that, think you can knock it down to twenty three thousand?”
“The price is the price here; I do not haggle with lower beings.”
The Sornain was acting strangely, normally shrewd negotiators he must still being trying to figure out how much he could take from him. It was either that or he was trying to impress the Gorrex. Tarik wondered if this wasn’t all part of the Gorrex’s plan, calling
“lower beings” was more their style.
Tarik brought up a legal
program to see if outright robbery was illegal here, at the same time he activated his personal recorder to capture evidence if it were. Being directly interfaced with the program and operating at the
of thought; the apparent lag in the conversation shouldn’t raise too much suspicion.
“Is robbery a crime on this world?”
“Robbery is illegal on this planet; if you suspect you are going to be a victim of a crime I can alert the local authorities.”
The program went on like a buzz in
“I see that you have activated a recording device, be aware multiple other recording devices are active within the building. I would advise against informing the authorities now as a false report comes with stiff penalties.”
Tarik had to think. Why would they have active recordings ready to transmit if they were going to commit a crime? Just then his attention was called back to the Gorrex.
“The scent of
is disturbing me, finish your business with the
[untranslatable name]. They smell disgusting when they are still alive. I much prefer the smell of cooked
; although they still smell like [untranslatable] at least you know you're going to feast.” The Gorrex shifted displaying his red tail feathers. Obviously this was an older
who more than likely was a veteran of the war. Asserting his dominance through body language was normal,
was just glad he wasn’t spraying the walls.
“This one does smell familiar though” he continued obviously trying to goad him into a fight “I must have slaughter one of his kin, they are filling but I wish they didn’t taste so much like rodent.”
The Gorrex was pushing him hard. He did not believe this particular Gorrex had slain and eaten his kin. However most of
’s family did fight in the war, all of them who left did die so it could be true. Tarik was green when it came to the galaxy but he wasn’t completely naive.
“Legal counsel, is assault legal on this world?”
Tarik queried the program. Did they just want him beaten to the point whereas he gave up his points?
“Assault is illegal on this world, however if parties challenge each other they may assault one another without recourse.”
“What are the rules of a challenge here?”
“To initiate a challenge one party must issue said challenge and the other party agree to that challenge. After acceptance the initiating party may attack at will, the accepting party cannot initiate the first attack or they will forfeit any rewards that are to be gained and will be put to death by the initiating party’s closest kin. The accepting party is permitted to defend oneself during the first attack. Being an off worlder you are not permitted to initiate a challenge, that right is reserved to citizens of [untranslatable] and tax paying members of the packs.”