FTL-3 Faster Than Life.
“Get up cadet! Get you’re butt moving! You’ve got to be faster than that! If this was combat you’d already be dead by now! A class three venting would have taken you out! Class three venting what’s that cadet Stone?!”
I’m running as fast as I can as fast as we all can running the two mile course they have us on while on ship. One mile through the corridors then up five flights of steps then over to the other mass stairwell and down it and running back down that same mile. My lungs are burning my muscles are screaming at me and I just really, really want to lay down the throw up. I thought I was in shape. These bloody resistance suits don’t help matters much either. And they quiz you while you’re running. It’s so you can think on your feet.
“Uhm…A class three venting is a hole in the hull roughly one foot or thirty base units in diameter Ma’am!”
“What! You don’t call me Ma’am, My Rank is Corporal! I’m the one doing this! So the sergeant doesn’t have to take the time out of doing real work to shoot you lazy slugs! What am I!?”
“That’s right! Now Move, move, move!”
I push the pain and my burning muscles out of my mind and concentrate on other things, anything. The new way I sway as I run, my torso swings more side to side than as a male. The feeling of my breasts even in the r-suit still having a real bounce and sway to them that no VR sim could ever achieve, the pressure on them from being restrained, the relief I’ll feel getting out of this suit. Then there’s the glide of my legs not impeded anymore by something I hated and the movement and wiggle of my new hips and filled out rear end.
VR and Sim-life can’t make you feel what it’s really like being female. It’s close but there’s things so missing. You don’t know really what it’s like to feel beat, dead tired and hurting as a woman. How good it feels to step into a shower like that and the feelings first thing just right, absolutely right. And there’s biological things too. You can pee and even feel it in VR but when you’re bursting and needing to the relief is just so different just because of the actual plumbing. Like sitting on a real female bottom, you can try to simulate it but there’s just now way. Like having to zap bar off your body hair. They used to shave it off and sometimes you can not get it as part of your package but I didn’t go for that. I zap-bar it off like every other woman does. Feeling that metal ultra fine comb scrape over my skin and the electric bite/tickle/hum as the light charge stuns out the hairs and they pull out easily without pain. I could get them removed and I might later but I’m enjoying this.
It’s been five days and most of us new to the service are sure we’re in hell. Bree isn’t as bad off as the rest of us and she has the advantage of having a month more than us facing the abusive training regimen. No, it’s not really abusive but it’s hard, it’s physically the hardest thing I’ve ever done and the willpower it takes to keep going is…It’s making me push myself harder than I ever have before.
It’s been the toughest week of my life bar losing my family and yet despite how hard it is this is a huge ship full of people that for the most part have the attitude that there is nothing that they’d rather do. I can’t help but to feel that resonating with me so much, I’ve always wanted to feel that way about something. I mean when we sit down to chow there’s the usual talking amongst ourselves but there’s the stories from the one’s who’ve been in longer and I love listening to them, we all do.
We’re in PT (physical training) most of the time, and that’s a lot of running and then there’s swimming, I was one of the one’s that didn’t have to learn first. Zero-gravity movement classes and weight training they push you and push you and then just to break things up they teach you stuff like the emergency drills or how to clean according to their tastes and carry supplies because why waist the batteries on a perfectly fine robot according to Corporal Stillwater. We get several hours of Scut-work a day and self defence training in a thing called Tae-Budo that’s a mixture of this old but very respected widespread for of fighting called Tae –Kwon-Do and boxing along with another ancient battle form called Judo. Tae-Budo is the most common mixed martial art in the known worlds and the easiest and most effective for us to learn while being green. It’s a huge class with many different levels of belts but everyone takes it, even the ones who came in the same time as us but are the combat types are taking it with us. I’m finding they’re getting it worse from the trainers because they’re all big and tough and feel invincible and they’re quickly shown they’re not.
The third day into training I was so beaten and bruised I cried myself to sleep roommates or not. The others were just as bad as me including Bree. Nelle actually spend time for awhile singing to me and the others even though at the time we were pounded and it took us all awhile before us new girls realized it was alright to cry. I didn’t just cry because of the pain that I was in but just stuff I held the hurt back for most of my life found an okay way to let itself out. Jesika and Carrington too had their moments and Nelle too only Anna our Ice princess ignored it and rolled on her side and ignored us too.
I sigh groan and pace with the others when we’re done and told to hit the showers then morning chow. I go into the showers with the others and they’re co-ed. We’re all fixed as it were so none of us can get pregnant while on duty there’s a few hook ups I guess the call it in this area as some people are just aroused way too easily or are equipped with new equipment that they’re dying to try out. The remade men are way too easy to spot, all of them are very hung and they are like teenaged boys getting hard at the drop of a hat? That’s a strange saying. Some of these newly made men have the grace to be embarrassed but the older ones; a lot of the standard males are so used to it now we don’t really stir things up too much. We get our share of looks and I get my own eyes full of very good looking men and boys. I’m definitely straight or that’s my primary attraction base. But that Triton guy…I can’t help but to enjoy my flush as I sort of enjoy my to the date favorite shower fantasy. I don’t go there but I’m enjoying the warm flushed skin and this me being alive feeling from it all. I’m just not ready for more yet.
Sunshine the very well endowed golden blonde goddess it seems has more than become friendly with the older staff and the newer made males and even the girls. She’s so uncannily confident with her new self it’s kind of intimidating if she wasn’t so open and friendly with everyone including the many people she’s already slept with.
Yes they allow fraternization in the corps. Like the ancient Romans? It’s encouraged to promote care and unity for your fellow soldier. Well not encouraged but hardly frowned upon either and there seems to be certain times and places for such things. It’s not like some have said that any army has ever really been able to stop it from happening it’s just this is a morale tool. Along with the companions who are like sex worker meets councilors. I’ve heard a few stories about how a companion has stopped a fight or something between or over lovers because they themselves had at one time or another been with all persons involved and used that intimate knowledge to diffuse the situation.
Sunshine’s already showing all the instincts for being one of those people. I see her sitting with a group of them this mornings as we’re in the mess getting chow. It’s I don’t know neat knowing that she’s going to likely be one of them but I’m from the same cradle group as she is and that she’s going through right now the exact same things in training as we are.
The rest of us are sort of developing too I guess. When you’ve lived in your head for most of your life as a group and now you’ve been thrust into a group of people who’ve gone through the same thing as you, and are going through real life more intense than anything you ever knew…you change, you change surprisingly faster than you thought.
Jesika… Arabic and tall has been finding something in our hand to hand training and dancing. She’s still quiet but not shy, she’s reserved. I like that she thinks things through really good.
Anna…is literally our ice princess, she’s aloof and quiet, she never ever cries and she socially avoids us as much as she can and she has this acerbic wit to her that leaves you hurt half the time just talking to her. It’s like she has no use for anyone and we’re all beneath her. It seems to go hand in hand with her looks and her pale beauty. I’ve said before she knows she’s one of the better looking ones, heck she’s one of the better looking girls on the ship period and she knows it. She doesn’t even deign to be social with the other elite cliques of the good looking, or well in this case the best looking of a good looking crew. I don’t understand her, I don’t because as bad as she is, and sharp tongued and bitchy she will turn that attitude on anyone who messes with her room/bunk mates five times as nasty as she does with us. Thanking her only gets you this look that’d peel paint.
I really wonder what happened in his now her life that has left them so damaged. I worry about her too, I can’t help it and of course I never will tell her that. She’d probably stare at me so hard I’d burst into flames.
Carrington…is very much my daunting first exposure to maybe either my first girl crush or we’re really becoming actual friends. I’ve never had very many friends outside the computer systems. Real life even then was full of parents who didn’t understand me, kids who’ve got no idea of how to deal with someone who’s different and why the different person doesn’t get fixed.
She reminds me of home in that way of myself and stuff but she had this whole race thing going on that just doesn’t make sense to me but where she’s from being part Africanized and another part Chinese that were consider not as socially right compared to the full ethnics of her home colony. Her family was fine except with her transgenderism and said that nature made her perfectly, that she was just gay. And the race stuff was of course unimportant with her family being so motley but like me the other children would never get it. Like me… but unlike me and most people I knew Carrington dove into books instead of online. It’s something she’s brought with her and she’s been sharing them with me. Books are this whole new experience to me, I’ll lean on her in the bunk as she reads to me and tells me what some of the old words mean and there’s this smell to them too. There’s something so visceral so real to actually cradle and hold a book, to curl up into your bunk and flip through the pages, scan along with the tip of your finger…
She showed me that, and brought that to me, plus I felt closer to her just by being close with her. It’s just simple being close to another person intimacy but I’ve never had that in my life. It fills a spot in me somewhere. And the English accent that’s always so sultry when it’s spoken clearly and in Carrington’s case softly.
Like I said. Girl crush? First friendship? I’ve never thought about her like that but I’m not sure I’d turn her away either.
I guess I’m rambling but if I’m talking about the rest of my Bunkie’s then I had really mention Nelle. Nelle could be a companion if she wasn’t so freckled, or just plain odd I guess. She talks all the time about everything and nothing, dances on a whim and can be so distracting. But Nelle’s the first one to lend you a hand, sing to you when you’re sick and everything. She’d be a great nurse but where she’s such a chatterbox I guess it’s good she’s going into communications.
Sorry, I head from the showers to the lockers and spray down with deodorant and some powder and fresh underwear and back into a fresh r-suit and then off to the mess hall. It’s busy and a hodge podge of so many kinds of people here and specialties and units. But there’s this us, thing here.
I’m getting used to the food. I’m getting used to the artificial gravity. It’s not easy but it’s getting to be less alien. Living without our OBC’s links to the network and stuff is hard. It’s harder when you’re not tired or between things and honestly I think that we’ve very much lost the ability to be okay with our own thoughts. It’s why I started writing here there’s some sort of withdrawal we’re all going through. My brain hurts sometimes from thinking. There’s a lot of apps you’d run like translators and calculators but search engines too. You’d say something to me that I wouldn’t get and it’d automatically find it and then refer me to just in case topics to have at the ready so I could contribute to the conversation. It wasn’t just me either, it’s everyone. Only like twelve percent of the people in the Colonial Union aren’t chipped up.
I’m finding it hard but some of them are complete nervous wrecks. It’s like they were more their on body computers and their programs and apps. That’s why they yell, and scream and push us. They’re thinking for us and most of the time we’re too beat to freak out. Then it’s eating and training and showering together. Depending on others for the information and input that we’ve been starved for. It builds socialization pretty fast. It forces us to bond in this whole new society, and like someone said we’re all offline, so this, this is ours and no one who isn’t here or one of us can access it.
I think I get it as I’m tucking into my granola and fruit and yogurt with a few strips of soy-bacon and a hot cup of caffeinated-meso soup. I stop eating and look around at my Bunkie’s and the others in the mess. This is real, more real than anything most of us have ever done and we’re choosing to do it together. Training together like a family and getting taught in order to do good for the family and for each other. I look at all of it and I can feel what they call l’esprit de corps? I really, am so feeling why I’m here. Why we’re all here and why after years and years tour after tour there’s nothing they’d rather do. Nothing that I’d rather do.
The ship lurches and the gravity plating goes off line as I see the blue drill condition lights go on and I grab another bite of my food before it floats away.
I’m ready for more. Bring it on.
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