Portar, the Benzite scientist, emerged from the turbo lift. He quickly walked around the bridge looking over the shoulders of the on duty crewmen as he evaluated each of their efforts. He passed in front of Captain Dorra d’Hexplora before taking a seat beside her. He leaned towards her and said, “The experiment is ready. It’s time to begin, Captain. May we proceed?”
The room was dark except for a bright light in the center of the room that punctuated the room’s most prominent feature, an occupied reclining chair with straps and adjustable head clamps. The Aurora chair was occupied by a rag-wearing Banik slave with a mask covering the right side of his face. Stark was half-mad from repeated visits to this torture chamber of horrors. He babbled loudly and senselessly with the intentions of keeping the monster that controlled the chair from learning the secrets he kept.
Stark’s tormentor stepped into the light and gracefully stepped to his side. Stark attempted to pull away from the creature as it came mere denches from his face. His breath was hot and rotten as he bared the rows of compact needle like teeth and hissed a growl at him. Stark laughed in his face, “What’s the matter, Scorpie? Are you letting a mere Banik slave get under your skin?”
Scorpius rose to his feet and peered down at Stark. “If that was true, I would have had the secrets of the Stykeria a long time ago. I merely enjoy the time we spend together, but I cannot fathom why we must endure this little performance every day? Tell me what I want to know, and we can forgo these formalities.”
“No. Scorpie. No. I love the chair. It’s my chair. You can’t have it. You can’t take it from me. It’s mine!” Stark drooled, panting loudly.
Scorpius turned and stomped out of the circle of light with conviction. “Activate the Aurora chair, 10 microns this time. We’ll see how he fairs after that.” On cue, the light shifted from white to a shade of blue. In response, Stark cried out as Scorpius’ machine ripped into his mind, attempting to break the mental defenses that stood between him and the information he sought.
Scorpius stalked from the shadows and removed the coolant tank he wore strapped to his back and set it on the counter. “Your futile attempts to fight the chair will only magnify the discomfort you feel.” He removed a small case from a pouch and prepared three blue coolant rods. His voice grew more menacing as he growled, “End this, Banik. Tell me what I want to know.” His breathing grew faster and harder as he entered an access code and the pack’s red hot coolant rods ejected. Scorpius quickly replaced each one with a fresh rod and donned the cooling pack once again. They’re affect was immediate as Scorpius regained his composure. “Share the secrets of the Stykera with me, Stark. Tell me how you ease the pain of others.”
Even through the pain, Stark managed a retort. “Your secrets. My secrets. Your secrets. My secrets. All of their secrets are my secrets. Mine. Not yours. My secrets, not your secrets.” Stark’s babbling was interrupted when the entire ship shook from an impact and went into tactical readiness condition.
Scorpius looked up at the flashing red indicators that lined the walls near the chamber’s ceiling and growled as Stark laughed and repeated his thoughts on secrets.
“Get him out of the chair, and escort him back to his cell. I’m going to see if Captain Molayne needs any assistance,” Scorpius replied as he climbed the three steps down to the chamber’s door.