The interior of the Storm Crow was like nothing I had seen before.
The corridors and doors were larger than any human ship, and shaped like the exterior with smooth and seamless curves. The blue metal was everywhere, forming all the bulkheads and floors with no discernable joints, welds or seams; it was as though the entire ship was made from a single piece of metal.
Siandyha and I were treated to a room of our own, a roughly rectangular affair sized like a large apartment lounge. The floor and the walls were draped with finely woven cloth, featuring designs of trees and animals. A central table and low benches around it appeared to be made of marble, a pale stone finely detailed with brown and orange lines. Light seemed to come from all directions, emanating from a series of globes that danced lazily below the ceiling. It took me a while to realise that they reacted to our presence and were following us around the room.
When Alisandra Zilaerion appeared later, Siandyha and I were sitting together at the table. Her presence in the room changed the mood of the room instantly, with many of the balls of light shifting across the room to greet her. I could see little resemblance between Siandyha and her mother except for their pale blue grey eyes, and those of Alisandra were deep with intent and purpose.
She looked at me directly and gestured towards the open door. "Leave us, I wish to speak with my daughter."
I looked across at Siandyha for support but she nodded with a faint smile. "I'll be fine."
The door closed softly and I was standing in a large corridor, one of several that formed the backbone of the ship. Several simulacra like those on the Thunderbolt moved past me, giving me no attention at all, while the occasional Lazloi regarded me with a mixture of curiosity and amusement. Seeing that most of the Lazloi were heading towards the front of the ship, I decided to follow them and see how far I could get before someone stopped me.
A young looking Lazloi accosted me and began talking gaily at me in their musical tongue, but neither of us could understand each other, so she gently guided me forward to a large door that revealed a large and open space. This appeared to be the bridge or command centre, and was filled with Lazloi of every kind. White spheres of different sizes floated around them acting as light sources and control consoles, with some large enough to perform as chairs. These appeared to be for the senior personnel, who floated nonchalantly in front of three-dimensional displays above the heads of the others.
The young Lazloi left me where I stood, and I gaped open mouthed at the wondrous technology arrayed before me. Here the conversations were like the singing of a choir, a weaving of melodies with no discernable tune. My attention was so enthralled that I almost missed a solitary Lazloi male who entered the room. He was first Lazloi man I had ever seen, and his appearance shocked me. Instead of the timeless youth and grace of the females, he was prematurely old and moved as though every joint in body was on fire. Two Lazloi helped him sit at a console and helped him buckle in. Several of the senior Lazloi floating above the throng acknowledged him reverently and went about their business.
I forgot the room and its marvels and watched the man happily working the controls of his console. This I realised was the fate the Lazloi fought against with all their might.
-- Tara Alessia, aboard the Lazloi cruiser, Storm Crow of the Dark Sister.
V4 figure with Nabia Hair and Xurge Cybersuit. Storm Crow is an original model created in Hexagon.
Scene elements rendered in Vue 8 Complete with the final image created in Photoshop CS2.