I jump into the co-pilot's seat, enjoying the sturdy feel of leather upholstery as Draven takes the pilot's seat and the ship starts up. Lila utters dire threats to Draven if he tries to escape again as the ship hovers above the air dock.
I glance down out the window, eyes sweeping over the docks in an automatic check of my surroundings. The anchor line next to us is swinging in the air below the dock, as if someone had cast off the line and taken off in their ship in a hurry. I squint, betting the leftover cookie dough at home that it had been the bounty hunter and Luna that had just left. If we hurried, we could catch them easily.
". . . We are rescuing Luna together and if you change that. . ." Lila's voice drops in sincerity as she leans forward. "We. Will. Get. You."
"Yes we will, Mr. Sneakypants," I add, trying to lighten the intensity. I look out towards open skies, then back towards Lila. "Which way did they go from here, Li?''
She thinks for a moment, her eyes no doubt taking on a pondering look behind her goggles. "They went Northwest, toward the Old Mount."
Finally, we have a destination! My hands tighten on the controls as the airship leaves the L behind. "Okay, if we can speed this old ship up we should get there in an hour. . ." I estimate, looking at the gauges. It's strange, I've seen airships older and heavier leave ones like ours in the dust, yet here we are: at a pigeon's pace above the sea and with places to go.
"C'mon, old thing..." I mutter. The ship seems to gasp in offense at my pleadings and decides to stall completely.
"What's wrong, Glow? Why'd we stop?'' Lila asks from the backseat.
"I don't know! The thing won't budge!" I jam my foot against the accelerator again and again, but it doesn't do the thing.
"WHAT?! Wh-what's wrong with it??'' Lila leans over my shoulder as I try getting the ship to move. The worst thing that could happen is that we start--- yup, we're falling.
"WHAT DO WE DO!! DRAVEN WHAT DO WE DO??" Lila screams in my ear. I wince, glancing over at the pilot's seat and finding it empty. That didn't help much. . .
"DRAVEN!!!" Lila shrieks hysterically as the airship plummets downwards to a watery demise. "DON'T LEAVE US WE'RE GONNA DIE!!!" She turns back to me. "SAVE US GLOW!! I'VE NEVER BEEN IN A FALLING AIRSHIP BEFORE I HAVEN'T EVEN RIDDEN ON AN AIRSHIP BEFORE!!"
I grit my teeth, wrenching at the controls. With any aether, I could coast the ship at a gentle slant and we could land in the water with only minor headaches.
"Wait, I thought you had your hover ship that Jefferson gave you! Isn't that like an airship?" I ask, trying to distract her from the situation.
"I DON'T IF IT IS BUT MY HOVER SHIP ONLY HAS ROOM FOR ONE PERSON AND IT'S NEVER FALLEN BEFORE!!!!"
I understand about half of this as the sea comes closer and closer, the engines stalling and coughing like someone choking on peanut butter. "Hang on!" I warn Lila. She grabs the back of my seat as we dip down, then. . . UP?!
Angry, white capped waves changes to bright blue sky and poofy clouds and the ship swoops up with a thump. No, the thump was my head. . . or Lila. . . hard to say. I relax as the ship steadies, and I point it northwest again just as Draven climbs in through the pilot's window.
"There you are!" I exclaim. "What gives?''
"You missed a bug," he says, holding up a contraption the size of a cog with wires breaking free of its inner workings.
"What is that?'' Lila asks, leaning forward again. "And why'd you leave?! We nearly died!!!"
"I had it under control, I was just climbing out the window and towards the engine," Draven says innocently, tossing away the disabled bug. Lila picks it up, looking at it curiously.
"That's a bug made specifically for jamming airship engines," I explain. "It latches onto the fuel valve and jams it with a small amount of fog radiation so you can't control how much fuel is being let out. Similar to how your valve can jam if your fuel tank overheats and gives out too much radiation! It's a genius idea, putting such a simple problem into the form of a gadget. You just open the airship's engine hatch, slip it in, and tada!" I lean back in my seat, happy to be in nerd mode.
"Oh..." Lila doesn't sound too pleased.
"That means the bounty hunter knew he might be followed," Draven mutters to himself as we speed across the skies. "We need to be careful. Hey, I have an idea!" he brightens. "You two could stay with the ship once we get to Old Mount and check for more--"
"Nope." Lila and I cheerfully say in unison. Draven groans and plugs his flash drive into the ship's USB port, cranking up the volume.
The three of us travel to a hidden air dock at Old Mount, Landry Cantrell's Gravity still playing through my head as we step out and look around at the stony canyons walls.
"The bounty hunter and Luna should be around here somewhere," Lila remarks in a quiet voice.
Draven's hand rests momentarily on his pistol, and I check my arm's electric blaster. It makes a decisive Click click as I turn the voltage on medium.
We move in, going down narrow rocky paths towards an enemy and a friend.
@Sam_Darkspeaker @Luna_Fuzzyradish @Draven_Eldercraft @Lila_Lightcraft