Dangers of Do-Gooding
by Jez Patterson
Back when she'd been a captain of the Fleet, before she'd chosen to marry her mentally and physically enhanced first mate and lost her command, Percina would have been flying sorties into the warzone, protecting refugees, or destroying the bases of errant warlords.
Her current role was flying a vessel bringing food and medical supplies to a refugee camp on the border of the fighting.
Since she'd become pregnant, however, Martin considered even this to be too risky a role to play.
"You should put your feet up," he said.
"That's for heart attacks," Percina said. "Or nosebleeds." Or the cancan. Or levitation.
"I was just thinking about the baby," he said.
"You think the baby would be more comfortable if I stood on my head?"
Martin sighed, his previously flawless forehead now possessing a single worry line, his eyes equipped with crows-feet and bags. Like carrion queuing for the airport shuttle.
You'll want him there for the birth, her mother had told her. There's no relief to be had digging your nails into something that doesn't scream back.
"We're here," she told Martin, swinging the ship down towards less a sea of misery as an entire ocean.
"We'll take it from here," the local group of kings informed her, their eyes running over the crates of vital food and medicine stacked behind her.
The war on Creulkin had been raging for thirty bitter years and involved more factions than a dramatized history of the universe. The war had started over territory or resources... or over rare trees or tortoises. It didn't much matter. Winning wasn't so much a relative term as a meaningless chiming of syllables.