The Thief

She couldn't help but think that all these men were judging her. The men, and the one woman with the stern face of someone who'd just swallowed a stinging fly. They were speaking to her through the haze of anesthetics - something about the sanctity of her genetics. "Your temple is intact," one of them droned as he leered at her from above the thin sheet. "The surgeons have altered your body, but not your soul." Her children would be pure. To Sybr- no, it was Amatallah now. To her, it sounded like they were reassuring themselves.

She remained still and thoughtless-looking under the sheet. The surgeons had done their job - her face kept the blank look of a nicla-grinder, and her heart kept thupping out its slow steady beat. Her body tried and failed again and again to display signs of stress, but her neural pathways had been subtly bent. She knew from what little they had told her that she could no longer blush from shame or betray her thoughts with involuntary eye movements. Something else, too - something about machines that scanned her brain for telltale signs of lying. It had all been blocked, like a dammed river.

The Apostle

Eight years later.

Amatallah willed her head to clear, but it didn't help. She was always morose after a killing. This was not like the murders she had done for food or shelter on Miriam. There, she had killed for the sake of her own life. Here, and on the three-score planets where she had ended the lives of the wealthy or the dangerous, it was on behalf of those who held to the Book and the Way.

She had always supposed that God was some distant force - perhaps He was concerned with the well-being of the nobles, but if He really existed He had not seen fit to cast any crumbs toward the thirty billion mouths that she had struggled against from her first days upright. No, she held no illusions about doing God's work. She had never been in a school-room (unless one counted the Apostle indoctrination centres where she had learned the arts of shooting and quiet death), but even she knew that what they had her do served the interests of man.

What else could she do? The Brotherhood had taken her in. Taken her when she lay begging in the street, dying from the muscle-toxin, barely able to lift her hands.

Amatallah swung out the window and clambered like a monkey up the thermpipe that reared up to the roof. A quick hop to a nearby power cable suspended above the street took her down to the alley where she had hidden her garment.

The blipping police cruisers shot by, bathing the crowd in intermittent reds and purples as they veered around the corner. An old couple followed the cruisers with their gaze before she pulled her man back, not wanting to make contact with and shame the woman whose blue burqa marked her as a Penitent pilgrim.


Born on Miriam

Age: 30

Str: 7 (was 7, then 2, then regrown back to 7)
Dex: 12
End: 9
Int: 11
Edu: 6
SS: 6

0 –3
1–2 –2
3–5 –1
6–8 +0
9–11 +1
12–14 +2
15 +3

Poor, high-population world

Animals 0
Athletics (Coordination) 2
Computer 0
Deception 2
Gun Combat (pistol) 2
Investigate 1
Recon 0
Stealth 2
Streetwise 0

Regrown muscles = 6,250 credit debt to the Brotherhood

Parts of her brain and central nervous system have been altered, with connections severed and reconnected. The process serves to suppress involuntary physiological responses like neurological changes, blush response, and eye movement. (+1 to Deception rolls)

Life Event: New Contact

Body Pistol
Gauss Pistol

Weapon TL Range Damage Auto Recoil Mass (kg) Magazine Cost (Cr.) Ammo Cost (Cr.)
Body Pistol 8 Ranged (pistol) 3d6–3 No –1 - 6 500 20
Gauss Pistol 13 Ranged (pistol) 3d6 4 –1 0.5 40 500 20

Thief careers: 1
Agent careers: 2

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