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Posted by Moon Walker, 27 February 2011 · 1,767 views

With the Earth still plagued with Kojima since after the National Dismantlement War, mankind resorted to flee to the skies, aboard majestic vessels cleverly named "Cradles", high above the intoxicated lands beneath them where they can continue to maintain their existence.
Ever since then, every business, expedition, mining… etc. was done remotely. The laborers, miners and soldiers were the unfortunate ones to be sent down to earth to carry out their tasks. Despite of this, many of them did not mind the consequences of working on the contaminated Earth, after all the lives of millions on the cradles depended on them, and they will continue to do so till this a cure for this "plague" had been found.

-Cradle 054, 1355hrs-

Looking out through the reinforced glass window in the elevator, any person could see no more than white puffs swimming across the blue background, provided that he or she looks beyond the Cradle engines and support beams that hold its sections together.

"Heh, as usually, nothing but blue skies and white clouds…. it's so quiet up here" a person said to himself as shifted his sights away from the window into the crowd present with him in the elevator.

"There's not much we can do seeing as how badly the earth is polluted, this is the only the safe place to stay until some genius figures out a way to clean it or adapt to it." remarked an old man beside him, it showed on his face that had already lived much of his life judging by the wrinkles drawn all over, and with barely any hair over his head.

"There's also the matter of those rogues causing problems for The League and threatening to take down our Cradles." added one of the women present, her uniform indicated that she was a Rosenthal personnel as far as anyone can guess. "Damn Line Ark… what's worse is that they have White Glint doing the dirty work for them."

Before anyone could respond the elevator pinged and announced their arrival at Level 1, East Wing. The doors opened wide, wide enough that nearly everyone in the elevator got out in one go. There, shuttles took them to different sections or sectors as they called them of the Cradle wing. 4 levels, each level with 4 sectors each side except for the 1st level that included the bridge.

Pulling up his shades over his head, the man walked towards a shuttle thematically painted to represent Algebra, one the major companies in the League. He presented the driver his ID and took a seat on the first available seat he found. After the last couple of people took their seats and no one else seemed to be coming on for that shuttle, the driver headed for the back of the bus and returned the IDs to their owners, ticking their names on his check list.

"Bilal Rabah?"

"That's me." answered the man, taking back his ID then pulling his shades over his eyes hoping to take a short nap before they reach their destination. Bilal was a former mechanic specialized in repairing non-military MTs. Hoping for a job with more pay, he applied to Algebra and was soon after recruited with a stroke of good luck, at least that's what it appeared.

In what felt like a 10 minute trip, Bilal woke up by the feeling of his body swing around then colliding with the seat in front of him. He shrugged off that little embarrassing accident despite hearing few chuckles behind him and fixed his shades over on his face and looked out to see where they reached. To his disappointment, the Algebra office wasn't as impressive as he thought it would be then again there isn't much room for innovative structures aboard the cradles. Unlike regular houses which are more like apartments stretching throughout long corridors divided into Blocks in each sector in different parts of the cradle wings, the Algebra office was simply a whole block under one roof and a few entry doors and emergency exits.

"Alright, this is the place, everyone head to the reception desk to get directions to where you're supposed to go." The bus driver announced as soon as he opened the bus doors.

As told, everyone on the bus who weren't already an Algebra personnel headed to the reception. The receptionist was no one special, cooped in a suit, glasses, name tag clipped on his chest. What stood out most is that he was missing a left arm, his left sleeves were folded inwards up to where the limb had cut off. It wasn't long before Bilal was already at the desk and infront of the one armed receptionist.

"May I see your temporary Algebra ID and documents?'

"Ok just a sec…. there."

The receptionist skims through the papers and checks over on his computer screen for something then finally faces Bilal

"Very good, everything is in order and you may begin right away, just take the left exit and follow the signs towards the hanger."

"What, I get to start working as a mechanic alre-?"

"Mechanic? You're the newest Algebra Next Pilot."


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