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Neil Ayers

Contacts, languages, part time co-pilot, jack-of-all-trades, man that gets things done.

0 · 199 views · located in The Rud'bul System

a character in “For a Fistful of Creds”, as played by varxint


Neil Ayers is 26, though he claims he is 24. Shorter red hair, pale complexion. Bright blue eyes. A light beard that he keeps well trimmed. He doesn’t remember what he used to look like. He’s in decent physical shape, keeping to a scaled down military workout regimen. He stands 1.7 meters tall and weighs 75 kilograms.


Slightly paranoid. Not in the ‘I don’t trust anyone’ idea. More in the, ‘I’m pretty sure someone, somewhere, is plotting against me and it might be you,’ idea. He is friendly and approachable but doesn’t seem to fully open up with anyone. People can spend hours talking with him, but at the end of that realize they know very little about him. He’s very good at getting others to talk about themselves. The diplomat upbringing coming out.


Neural interface, enhanced language processing, enhanced tech interface. Black market implants that can change the colour of his hair and eyes and skin tones. A set of common tools and a less portable, but more extensive set, of specialized ship’s tech tools.


Neil grew up as a diplomat’s son. He traveled from world to world, growing up in one starship or another. He was able to meet many different people and aliens over his childhood, always being exposed to new languages and cultures. However, he never stayed in one place long enough to have any friends. Sure, he could be friendly and make a quick playmate out of anyone he met, but easy come, easy go and he was never able to find out what it means to make a lasting bond with anyone. Instead, he bonded with the ships. He would spend travel time exploring nooks and crannies. Following along maintenance accessways and other restricted areas. He was constantly being caught and punished for being in the wrong place. Which of course led to further isolation via punishments, which lead to further innovative ways to override ship security or open hatches that were locked shut. Sometimes he would help out the ship’s technicians as Neil would often know the layout of a ship better than a new tech crew. Often times he would find a hideaway and watch the pilots. Picking up general concepts of piloting.

The constant mischief and rule breaking exasperated his family though and they looked forward to when Neil turned 16 so they could enrol him in the military cadet classes. An early recruitment vector for full fledged military service. While he was not a natural in combat and weapons training, Neil’s experience with language and his knowledge of the inner workings of ships lead to a path of communications and initial training in navigation and piloting. Neil excelled. The military even paid for neural implants that heightened his natural ability with languages. As well as interface implants to be able to more directly connect with a ship’s computer. Neil soon became a sought after officer and was shuffled from one ‘important’ crew to another. Often he would be used in first contact situations or dicey diplomatic meetings where military presence might be required if things went bad.

On one such occasion, when trying to influence an inter-system squabble, Neil was ordered to translate a speech incorrectly. Making a diplomat sound insulting and aggressive, rather than cautious but open. Neil could see that his military superiors were itching for a fight. Neil felt very uncomfortable, his diplomatic upbringing railing against the militaristic and opportunistic tendencies of his chain of command. Instead, Neil defected to the opposing alien faction, told them about the plans and hitched a ride out of there as the talks broke up. While the talks were not effective this time, they were held more quietly later, and Neil played a key role in translating a rough outline that was to be used to guide peace talks. After that though, Neil knew he would have to lay low. Using the goodwill of the aliens and their advanced bio-implant technology, Neil had another implant installed. This one would be able to change his body’s pigmentation over the course of a day. Hair and eye colour were easiest. But he could change his skin tone if it suited him.

His language abilities and his new bio-implants, as well as his diplomatic abilities, made it easy for him to fall back into a nomadic lifestyle. He rarely stayed in one place for long and assumed many identities. During this time he managed to make many contacts in various underworld organizations. Assuming many identities to keep his tracks confused he knew how to play a role to match a specific organizations needs. Through these contacts he's been able to keep an eye on the Hegemony military, always staying one step ahead when they occasionally decide to look for Neil Ayers again.

So begins...

Neil Ayers's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Neil Ayers Character Portrait: Hank Fede Character Portrait: Franz Malhotra Character Portrait: Alanys Mayor
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#, as written by varxint
Neil woke just before the gel started draining. He let his body float in a relaxed state of mind. Having been involved in many diplomatic missions, across many systems, Neil had spent more time in the gel than he had in a real bed. He learned to enjoy the floating sensations. He also knew that relaxing worked better than fighting against the sensation of the gel in your lungs. He held his breath, there was no need to try and breath yet. The gel in his lungs would have enough oxygen to sustain him for a least 20 mins now that it wasn’t being recycled. So, Neil relaxed. He slowly allowed his legs to take his weight as the gel drained. He kept his eyes closed, another trick he found helped suppress the panic most felt in the gel. “Don’t let your sight fool your brain that your body is in trouble. Your brain knows better but your eyes can easily sway it.

When he heard the capsule open he knew it was time to start moving. He stepped out, one step. Still holding his breath he shook his hands sharply to clear them off as much as he could. Then he wiped his face and eyes. Finally, like a diver clearing a snorkel, he ‘exhaled’ in one hard push. He felt his lungs clear easily and heard the gel splat to the floor.

Now he opened his eyes and grinned. A short breath with another hard exhale to get the remaining gel from his lungs and he headed to the showers. This was the one thing he did appreciate like others in the gel. Nothing felt better than a hot shower after a long gap sleep. He took his time, stepping out to hear the first of the captain’s orders. His stomach rumbled at the thought of breakfast. This ship was equipped with fairly nice dining options. Of course, anything compared favourably to military style rations. And even those sounded good compared to what Neil had to settle for while on the run.

Neil hadn’t been on one ship for longer than one gap run since he’d went AWOL. This was the first one he’d been on with the Dragon. Most times, whenever they entered a new system and the captain heard the typical list of wanted and missing they always gave Neil a funny look. Neil took the hint. Changed his hair and eyes, picked a new name, and tried to find a new ship to sign up with. Mal gave Neil a different feeling though. He got the sense Mal liked Neil’s ability to shift idents.

I guess we’ll see soon enough,” he thought cheerfully, “No doubt Fede was pulling in the wanted list right now.

Neil looked in the mirror. His hair was a mess of colours. Another thing gap sleep did to him. It made it hard to keep everything from shifting too much. He chose his typical red hair and blue eyes and shrugged. He never remembered if this was the description on the wanted list or not but didn’t care too much. It was best to get the AWOL thing out of the way quickly. See if it was going to be an issue or not.

Neil dressed and headed to the bridge as the captain issued the second order. “Uh oh. Well, here it comes I guess. Emergency meeting to discuss the implications of their language expert and co-pilot’s interesting history.

He walked onto the bridge with an expectant grin, “Rested and ready Cap. I expect you’ve something to discuss?” He looked over each member of the little crew with a cautiously friendly gaze. Trying to get a measure if one of them were going for the bounty this time or not.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Neil Ayers Character Portrait: Hank Fede Character Portrait: Franz Malhotra Character Portrait: Alanys Mayor
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Alanys greeted the rest of the crew with her customary morning smile, practically radiating positivity towards them. Whether this was because she’d recently taken a hit, or because it was her natural default with people was a question she was in too good a mood to ponder. She listened silently as Mal seemed to be taken with another one of his more melodramatic moods, observing him carefully for signs of hidden stress. Maybe it was just the gap sleep she decided without comment. Then he showed them the starseeds. They were undeniably pretty, and she stared quite attentively for a moment, relishing in the pure untainted pleasure of witnessing something new and pleasant. And then, as tends to be the case with most fleeting pleasantries, the moment was lost and Alanys turned her attention to Neil as Mal addressed him.

She tried to get a read off the red headed man, but while her specific mutation perhaps gave her a better sense of other people’s emotions than what could be considered normal, she could influence people’s emotions, not feel them. There was a big difference between the two. Alanys could testify; she’d known more than one empath. She wasn’t given much time to observe though, before Mal was calling her away to the cargo hold. “You’re the boss.” She drawled almost lazily as she turned and followed after him, resisting a snarkier comment at being referred to by her last name. They’d been friends for five years now, and though she knew it was simply Mal’s need to keep a professional formality with the crew, she didn’t have to like it, and barring situations where it was a dire necessity, attempted to foil his attempts at every turn.

Alanys looked up at the machinery mildly as she approached Mal in the cargo hold, and felt no desire to touch it. She didn’t need to feel the grime to know it was there thank you very much. She returned his half smile with one of her own, and took the data pad he handed her gingerly. She’d have to find a safe place to put it, somewhere in her room she imagined would suffice, though perhaps keeping it under computerized lock and key wouldn’t be a bad idea either. She might like Hank and Neil well enough, but she sure as hell didn’t know them well enough to not keep important valuables locked away.

“And since when exactly have I ever been a good judge of character?” Alanys half quipped in response to Mal’s question before shrugging with a sigh. “I don’t know Mal, they both seem like good enough guys. They both…are obviously hiding something, but having crap in your past you’d rather keep buried is something I don’t typically judge people for you know.” Which was entirely true, though from both a command and personal perspective she knew that crap sometimes had a tendency of finding its way to the surface with disastrous consequences. Not the ideal condition for your crew from a captain’s perspective either.

“I feel better about Neil than Hank.” She felt obligated to report. “I’m not entirely sure why though. Do you want me to keep an eye on them, see if I can find anything out?” Alanys asked carefully after a moment. She hated using her ability on people to make them need to talk to her, especially about things that could be private, but if the safety of the ship could be assured, and if Mal asked her to, she would. Even if it made a part of her cringe on a base level.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Neil Ayers Character Portrait: Hank Fede Character Portrait: Franz Malhotra Character Portrait: Alanys Mayor
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#, as written by varxint
Neil listened to the captain’s opening lines, waiting for the questions. He was amused by Malhotra’s dragging it out. When the outside view was revealed Neil was stunned momentarily. He watched the starseeds, admiring their beauty. The colours washing over his face, reflecting in his eyes. The tint of his eyes shifted and changed with the colours of the starseeds. Neil was lost in the view and didn’t realize how his eyes were reacting.

Neil’s reverie was broken by Malhotra’s statement. He blinked and turned to look at the captain, his eyes shifting back to their normal view as he did. He was about to address the question when Malhotra asked him to think and walked away. Neil watched him walk away, confused, and slightly annoyed.

He couldn’t figure out what Mal’s angle was, “Why ask a leading question, then walk away? What the hell is there to think about? Is he trying to make me more nervous, thinking it’ll get me to talk? He obviously knows, so why draw it out. I’ve nothing to hide. It’s not like it’s a big secret that isn’t plastered all over the universal wanted lists. He doesn’t like it, the crew doesn’t like it, then I do my thing. Get them through the cargo inspection and move on. Whatever.

Neil shrugged at the departing captain and move his gaze to Alanys. Even though he’d only had a few chats with her before the gap he realized he kind of liked her. She was friendly and easy to talk to. Now, though, she was giving him the once over. He watched her striking blue eyes take in all she could in a brief glance. He nodded to her, “Yup, she’s gotta know too. Why give me the eye like that? I bet she’s trying to figure out if I’d be a threat to the ship before the inspection. Whether to dump me now or take advantage of my contacts.

Again, Neil was about to speak when the captain called her away, “Alright then. Typical drill. It’s not like I’ve not done this multiple times before. Same thing every time. They pretend they don’t know. They take a measure of how much I might lie to them. They figure out it’s not worth the risk to have me around, but they don’t quite want to go through the hassle of turning me in. Too many other things to risk having the military police poking around. So, I’m encouraged to seek another ship, since maybe I want to move around more than they plan to. Or maybe the next job doesn’t need my contacts. Or a hundred other excuses to kick me out. Wish it would have happened quicker, but I’ll deal with it when they come back. At least with all the activity in the area it shouldn’t be hard to find another ship to jump to if they decide they don’t want me around.

Neil gave a satisfied nod and looked back to the controls. Keep the ship steady and bring her in easy. That’s all he figured he’d be asked to do while the captain was in the hold, “Easy enough. Not much going on out there right now. The inspection will be the challenge. Better start making inquiries around to find out who the ‘right’ inspection officer is.

Neil turned to Hank. Neil hadn’t had any significant interactions with their techie and couldn’t really pinpoint how he felt about him. However, at this point he needed some secure communications and no time like the present to meet someone, “Hey, Hank right? Or would you prefer Fede on the bridge? Anyway, can you set me up with an encrypted communication line? It will probably have to jump around various end points in customs and inspections. I need to figure out who we want to come aboard and play the inspection game with us.”