"Amelia, don't resist them, just give them what they want!" her father's voice trailed off as he was dragged away from the bridge, the fear in his voice apparent; he knew his daughter's fate, but still he had hoped...
Amelia held back tears as one of the partially exo-armour clad thugs gripped her jaw, aligning her face with his; his thick, unkept beard almost brushing against her.
"Now, are you going to do what the good old man said?" He uttered, spittle from his course words spraying on her, the vile smell of his breath almost making her sick. "If the little girl plays along, maybe she will survive longer than he did!" A sadistic smile formed on his pock-marked face as she heard her father's screams in agony from beyond the bridge airlock.
"Fuck you." Amelia spoke sternly, anger taking precedence over terror, her vision locked to his.
"And here I thought we weren't going to have to kill you." The Pirate grunted, slapping the girl to the deck with force. "Alright lads, when you finish up with that asshole get over here and have some fun. Been a while since I showed an Aquarian girl how us 'shark boys play 'nice!'" He shouted, bursting out into laughter as he stepped away from Amelia; who was still dazed from her head impacting on the deck.
The pirate leaned over one of the consoles on the deck opposite Amelia, who had pulled herself up to a pained sitting position. "Now let's see what we have here..." he muttered, but clearly loud enough so that he would be heard by his captive.
"Biometrics security-sealed container?" He asked aloud, before laughing sadistically again. "Oh, as if we need to authorise the container to take what's inside... but you know..." he paused, looking over to Amelia who glared back helplessly. "Wouldn't it be fun to rip out your eyes, or cut off your hands... Maybe gut you a little, just a bit, to collect some biometrics, little girl?"
Amelia was terrified, but she tried as hard as she could to hide it externally, but her breathing and heart-rate increased nonetheless. Despite this, the anger at this vile pirate scum once again took over her, pushing the fear aside for a moment she gritted her teeth. "Only talking like that when your victim is helpless." she paused, spitting out blood-filled salvia from her jaw injury inflicted moments before. "If it had been just one fucking moment before, you would be sucking up to an Imperial's gun barrel right now you piece of shit".
The pirate grinned back at the girl. "That's why we're here, in neutral space, girl. Across the border, where the Imperial scum can't find you. All alone, and if you keep speaking with that tone, I'll make sure your death is as slow and as painful as it can be as we remove your organs one by one..."
The pirate's threat was cut short by a voice crackling over the communicator attached to his salvaged exo-armour.
"Skip, we've got contacts, uh, three contacts..." The voice exclaimed.
The pirate stood up from the console and gripped the communicator on his vest. "What? Where are they heading, speak you jackass!"
"... Intercept with our position, looks like we've been tailed. Garga's just about to finish latching the haul, he says we have like, a minute until it's ready to go, better hurry it up in there!"
"Gah!" The pirate barked. "Fine, latch it out and punch it. I'll meet you in the pen."
Amelia was almost as surprised as the pirate, it wasn't normal that the Aquarian authorities would follow civilian vessels beyond the Angel Reach's nebularic border zone. Hope filled her mind suddenly, but she knew this piece of human garbage wasn't likely to let her live...
"Well, it's your lucky day, Aquarian girl!" He shouted over to Amelia, who pulled herself to her feet. "No time to have any fun, so you get to die nice and quick." he added, pulling out his sidearm and aiming it single-handedly at Amelia's head from across the deck.
Amelia felt an adrenaline rush overcome her as the end drew near. Confusion, terror and anger overcame her as she squinted, it was time.
A several gunshots echoed across the bridge, followed by the heavy sound of a body falling to the deck with a metallic thud. The sound of heavy footsteps filled the bridge as Amelia opened her eyes tentatively, lowering her arms from the instinctive protective stance moments before her expected death.
She was terrified, but as her eyes focused, the crimson-accented exo-armour of Imperial Navy Marines became clear. She dropped to her knees with exhaustion as one of the Marines moved to break her fall.
"Pincer, this is Sigma Team. Bridge secure. We've got a single survivor, civilian, female. Requesting medevac on this position." One of the marines spoke, his helmet modulating his deep Aquarian voice.
"Are you injured, civilian?" The marine asked Amelia, who shook her head nervously, wiping the blood from her jaw injury.
"No sir, just a bit shaken up." She replied.
The marine nodded in acknowledgement. "We've got the situation under control, you'll be evacuated to our ship in a few moments."
"Thank you, he was going to kill me just as you showed up. Pirates..." Amelia stated, looking over to the pirate's hulking dead body; charred impact holes from high velocity FIMD weaponry still smoking from his back.
The marine looked over to the corpse, then looked back at Amelia. "We need you to co-operate and provide us with any information you have regarding these pirates and your vessel, can you do that?"
Amelia paused for a moment, looking back to meet the Marine's gaze, before nodding nervously. "Yes, of course."
A few moments later, two more marines showed up on the deck, restraining a captive pirate.
"Sergeant, we found this one hiding near the cargo hatch." One of the marines exclaimed.
The Marine Sergeant nodded and gestured to the marines to haul the captive back through the bridge airlock. "I'll deal with this, Sigma Team, secure the civilian for medevac in 5, I'll flag the ship for recovery and we'll pull the logs when we bring it in. Time to wrap thins up".
As the bridge airlock door sealed, the Marine Sergeant kicked the pirate captive to the deck and placed his armoured boot on the back of his neck.
"I don't know anything, ugh, I swear! We're just simple pirates!" The pirate exclaimed in pain under the weight of the marine's armour.
"Piracy?" The Marine Sergeant stated, increasing the pressure under his boot as he drew his sidearm and levelled it with the pirate's head.
"I don't think so."