“I’ve got it,” Xanete said, pushing the box across the table.
The room was silent. Xanete could feel the tension in the air from the other three gang leaders around the table.
What she was proposing was unheard of – a truce to their fifty year war. A truce to allow them to focus on the real enemy amassing at the edges of their solar system.
“Open it,” Olnet said. She was a gruff woman, fifty years at the helm of the Five Tongue gang would do that to you. Her greying hair was pulled into a tight traditional bun, held together with a thin needle that, if her reputation was true, was filled with poison.
Xanete reached over and opened the clasp. She paused, just for a heartbeat, to let the anticipation build.
Next to her, Tenran of the Eight Eyes guild lent forward slightly.
So he is interested, Xanete thought. She kept her face passive, even though she wanted to smile. Every leader was flanked by three of their best guards, not just for their protection but to record every movement of the other leaders around the table.
Xanete pulled back the lid.
Light erupted from within, illuminating the dark room instantly. Blues and greys swirled around the ceiling like clouds.
Even Olnet leaned forward just slightly. Xanete couldn’t blame her for the lapse in concentration.
After all, the Saturn’s Wave was an orb like no other.
“It’s real,” Gyane whispered from Xanete’s right. He was the youngest of the group, only having inherited his gang a few years ago from his now deceased sister.
“Yes,” Xanete said, “and with it, we can defeat the Yunal. Their skin cannot withstand the power if we put it in a gun-”
“Not just any gun, I assume?” Olnet chuckled, looking at Xanete approvingly, “you’ve done good, girl.”
Everyone was a girl to Olnet, even Xanete who was only twenty years her junior.
“I know,” Xanete replied, “now, are you all in?”
Tenran paused, glancing at Olnet for a fraction of a second. He had his own agreements with her, that was common knowledge. But deference? That was new.
“Yes,” Olnet said.
“Yes,” Gyane followed.
Tenran paused, pretending to consider.
“Yes,” he said.
“Then it is done,” Xanete said, snapping the box shut, “the truce is agreed.”
This flashfiction was first posted in 2020
Featured Image by Alice Hampson on Unsplash
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