Short Story- Shade

Past morning in Marseille, light shining through the window at a 40 degree angle, covering most of the desk and the Admiral’s chair. He thinks for a moment how he’d like to have a cigar in his mouth, despite him not being a smoker. Stationary and office things on his desk are gently bathed in bright light, but he only sees the document in his shadow.

A middling strength knock comes from the door, four knocks.

A: Yes.

The door opens promptly.

G: Admiral, Colonel Toulouse reporting for duty.

A: Colonel, come in. Take a seat.

G: Thank you sir.

A: You have heard of the attack in Toulouse?

G: No, sir, a terrorist attack in Toulouse city?

A: Oh, well, rebels attacked the base and stole a Praetor. You will be in charge of finding them and returning the ship undamaged.

G: I don’t q-

He gestures towards the door without noticing Col. Toulouse was asking a question:

A: Ask him for the details. He can answer any questions you have.

G: … Yes sir-

A: You are welcome colonel, this is a great opportunity for you. You are a smart man. I asked for you personally on this case because I know you can get that which belongs to us back without messing it up. You will be attending the gala next week?

G: Possibly, sir. I might have to attend a family event beforehand.

A: Don’t be modest colonel, it will be fun. You will be done with this by then, I will introduce you to General Septheim. Make sure you have some stories to tell him.

G: I’ll do that, sir.

A: You are on your way, -colonel-.

G: I’ll be on my way then, with permission, sir.

A: [Laughs a bit] Go, go.

He not impolitely gestures with his hand for him to leave. Col. Toulouse closes the door conscientiously, relieved and confused, and asks the assistant for the report.

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