One might begin to ask me why I wold take any job being by myself against a whole group of people. The truth was even if Suvan was not with me I would have agreed to do the job. Even if I was not psionic powered, I would take this job. In large part this is because the security on starship is pretty hard to crack. There are fail safe security measures for just about every major operation on the ship. My bio-features are regularly scanned and no one but me can activate the major systems. It would actually take a pretty high degree of computer skill to reprogram the computer to ignore me in favor of someone else. That creates a problem for any would be hijacker of thief.
Pirates don’t even bother most times to try to steal a ship. They disable it, board it and take everything of value that isn’t part of the superstructure and then blow it to kingdom come. On the flip side I can give a verbal or gesture command and the whole ship would be flooded in a matter of seconds with a very powerful knockout gas to which I am immune. No pretty much you would have to find a way to control the pilot of a vessel to get it to do what you want.
The two belters did not concern me. They looked a little rough but they were only at the point of having enough force to force people to stay away from their claim. Nope the only guy that was a match for me was Mr. Space Marine and he would think twice about it because he is not a qualified pilot. I mean he could whip my ass, but then he would be stuck in space. Nope, mutual benefit and security meant these people needed me and given that they were going to be flying through asteroid belts they were going to need a top-notch pilot and that is me.
Even so I took to wearing my sidearms all the time when outside my room. The drama of me and Suvan being lovers seemed to be working as the men folk were definitely staying their distance from both of us. All it would take is a well placed hand or kiss and that ended the heterosexual desires of the menfolk aboard the Sabine Hawker. The only problem I had with all the playacting was that about five days into it, Suvan was not acting anymore she was seriously attracted to me and told me so one night when we crawled into bed. I told her plainly that I don’t like girls except for once in a while but mostly I preferred boys particularly if they know how to use their equipment effectively. She said she did understand but she could not help her feelings.
I sighed deeply and continued to run my ship. We came out of hyperspace right on schedule and the system was just as I remembered it. Not too much of a possibility of an inhabitable world. There were several large asteroids that could be converted into space stations. The two big resources for this system were the asteroid belts which could be mined and the gas giants which could be used for refueling. The hope was that my teams initial survey many years ago had missed something in the scanning of the asteroids the first time. I set course for the outermost belt of asteroids and began very focused scans on them to see where the best spots to do prospecting test drilling might be. I found three good possibilities and headed for the closest one.
Prospecting is up close and personal. Scanners are great for finding possibilities but if you want to know for sure you have to go out and take a look. Asteroids with all their metals tend to put out a lot of interference so you have to put people on the ground. That means that you have to get in close and use Vacc suits. larger operations might use shuttles and Vacc suits but we only had the Grav Vehicle which was not good given that asteroids don’t have much of a gravity field.
I placed the ship next to an asteroid that was about the size of a very small moon. The gravity was almost non-existent and so the three prospectors left the ship via the airlock and went across to it and started some test drilling. The first asteroid was a bust and so were the other two spots in this outer belt. We began scan even further as the days went by but we still found nothing. We were on the fourth spot on the second belt when we discovered something. The meters were at least registering precious metals of various kinds. I adjusted the scanners for this and did more active scans.
We quickly discovered this whole area of this belt was loaded with precious metals. We marked the area and adjusted the maps. It would take an actual prospecting ship to mine the ore but we estimated that this was definitely worth the return trip. I could see the three of them calculating their shares in their heads. The wheels of greed were now in motion. I prepared for a double cross but also hoped it would not happen. This could be much more profitable if no one got greedy.