Not a Princess Ficbit – Introductions

Hank pushed on the mattress to sit fully upright, glancing at the healing scar above his gut. Damn, he was lucky Elaine hadn’t aimed any lower. Gut-shot and human, he would have died. “Special Sergeant Major Hank Henriette, Miss, lately of the 26th Company. Forgive me for not rising. May I have the pleasure of your name?” And hopefully that was enough, he didn’t remember half the manners the Church and William had tried to thump into his head. Cain had always-

Don’t think about it!

She stood, apron rustling over her dark dress, and dropped a formal curtsy. “Nancy Charlotte Bancroft, sir. Sharl. And you already know my father.” She rose, brilliant blue eyes and a shy smile. “Thank you for bringing him home, sir. The children will be so glad to meet you.”

It was looking more and more like William had brought Hank home. Why? “The last thing I remember is… being shot. What happened?”

Sharl glanced at her father. Will nodded, a clear go on.

Sharl drew a deep breath. “We don’t know very much, sir-”

Hank is fine,” Hank interrupted. Sir just didn’t feel right from the girl he’d last seen as a black-and-white young imp in William’s locket. “Your father calls me that.”

A huff, and a gentler scaled nod.

“Hank.” Sharl was definitely pink. “Father said Lieutenant Madhouse called the unit together and told them the peace treaty had been signed, you and Dr. Bluelake had gone to report to Command, and they were free to… to go home.”

9 thoughts on “Not a Princess Ficbit – Introductions

    1. I’m extrapolating from anime and manga canon here. We know Cain dispersed the unit, that he did so apparently without trouble from the Army, that he then disappeared and by the time Hank woke up Incarnates were already going mad. So far as we know, there was nothing in the treaty about the Incarnates. The Northern government just decided they weren’t worth keeping alive post-war if they were going crazy.

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  1. I read a scifi fi short story decades ago, that focused on the question what do former (conscripted/punishment unit) soldiers do after a war, when their bodies were modified to be weapons of war, and they are supposed be “demobilized/-militarized”. When the modifications involved the brain (for psychic powers) or say, making a person capable of mimicking other people physically…

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      1. The story followed 2 AWOL soldiers some time after the end of an interplanetary war (or was it interstellar?), basically targeting marks for scams/robbery (often by setting up ostensible sexual assignations. One had been modified to be an projective empath able to cause delusions/halucinations/nightmares in people, the other had felinoid mods, as some kind of scout/assassin, iirc. The empath is often plagued by terrible nightmares themselves.

        One target ends up being a former comrade in arms, hunting down those that haven’t gone through “demobilization”. She looses the confrontation, but she does have info on the empath’s origin, which the grifter pair have been trying to find out about.

        The soldiers of the particular unit they were a part of had been convicts, they already knew that, but what they hadn’t known was what crime the empath had committed. The empath being a genetically designed hermaphrodite sex “worker”, whose body is locked to prepubescence. They had murdered/killed a “client”, and so was sentenced to be a soldier (the implication is, they would be free again, after being properly “demobilized”.

        The former officer (iirc) that had been tracking them down hadn’t been really enthusiastic about the mission because she knew that to create an empathic “weapon”, that countless baby brains had been subjected to unending nightmares by direct stimulation, until one finally developed projective empathy in its defense. Only the kind of “sextoy” the empath was could stably be modified, and thus ended up the candidate. The nightmares they suffer are inextricably linked to their powers.

        They could undergo gene therapy, to undo their body’s developmental stasis, and so be relieved of their ability, and the nightmares.

        I don’t quite recall if the officer had been hoping to die at their targets hands, out of guilt, or simply ending things, because she was modified to be a “chameleon”, changing appearances (possible the bone structure as well), and for her, there is no demobilization that is survivable, or with any kind of acceptable quality of life…

        In the end, the officer is only choked unconscious, and the pair go off to other things. The empath muses on getting nodded to “grow up”, because they would like to “properly” love their companion, but she says they should just continue on, and make the best of life…


    1. That starts with not-so-good people, with un-removable power, which is an interesting start. Zahn’s “Cobra” series starts with people who’ve been sorted for quality… and shows both the problems that would still be there regardless of how much they are paragons of good, as well as how even paragons of good may not all agree on appropriate solutions when forced to choose “which evil is actually the lesser evil”.

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  2. AHHHH I can hardly wait to read this entire thing! Just two ficbits in and I’m already hooked! XD I wonder how much John told his daughter? The bit about what Cain told the other Incarnates was interesting, if only because he’d have to tell them something so they didn’t question where their Captain and doctor went.

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