Picking scabs

Comments   0   Date Arrow  December 3, 2007 at 4:33am   User  by Aria Jenneth

This is the first time I’ve written my thoughts here since the incident with Star Fraction. So much has changed that I don’t even feel like the same person writing here, and perhaps I’m not.

I made my first solo kill on a fellow capsuleer a couple of weeks ago, an Acheron Federation destroyer pilot who managed to weaken my Crow’s shields to about thirty percent before my missiles dispatched his ship and crew to the great beyond. A kid … a rookie … he must have been. I was struggling with flight control so much I could hardly maintain lock, much less warp scrambling; he had half a dozen chances to escape, at least, and never took one.

Or perhaps he was like me, caught up in the thrill of the hunt, of the kill. He came back moments after his first loss, only in a Thorax, which the rest of the gang jumped and proceeded to shred in about twenty seconds.

How many dead? … Ten to fifteen, maybe as much as twenty from the destroyer, another few hundred from the Thorax. Why am I even keeping count? The dead don’t bother me anymore, if they ever really did, but I still find myself trying to calculate the number of dead as though I’m picking a scab. The numbers are rhetorically useful, but the numbers on a capsuleer vessel aren’t even particularly significant next to the hundreds of thousands of dead from my assorted commissioned battles against conventional vessels. It might be a method of keeping track of my own contribution to eventual backlash and extermination, but that doesn’t ring true, either. I’ve known, ever since that first Armageddon, how much I enjoy this, the satisfaction of the hunt, the power to seek out, ensnare, and kill, the ecstatic glee of the successful predator. I seem to be fairly good at it.

Why am I trying to stop myself? What purpose can I serve by scratching at this itch, by constantly reminding myself how many people I’ve murdered? It’s not even as though I still try to keep anything like an accurate count. It’s not as though I care.

And now I’m torturing myself over torturing myself without giving myself the slightest ounce of pain. It would make more sense if I were actually in anguish, or numb, or some other dramatically appropriate state, but as it is I can’t even tell what I’m actually feeling from what I think I’m supposed to be feeling– it’s that faint.

Mostly, as I think over all of this, what I’m feeling is just anticipation. Tomorrow, or the next day, I’ll get to hunt, again, another capsuleer, and, by the way, another few humans will die because of it.

… by the way. Collateral damage. Death as byproduct. Pick, pick, pick.

Tagged   Combat Report · Personal