I graduated today.
I graduated today. I can now call myself a capsuleer.
Four years of study, of sweat and late nights, little sleep, of being hooked up to machines and suffering endless medical tests. Four years of struggling to maintain some sort of life outside the academy, of holding onto memories and motivations. Four years of being terrified I would fail, end up mindlocked or worse, that everything would turn out to be for nothing, that I would have to go back to Intaki to an empty house and a ruined life, and my mother, myself, and Intaki would be no better off than before.
All this so I can pilot a ship with my very thoughts. I will roam among the stars with the other so-called demigods, the rare humans who incite fear and awe among the regular population.
The ceremony was stiff, boring, and replete with words like “honor”, “duty”, and “glory for the Federation”. The navy focused more on itself rather than celebrating the achievements of our too-small class of graduates. I recalled Devan’s oft-repeated talks about how so many capsuleers leave the navy after graduation, and saw in the speeches today a note of desperation and desire to retain as many of us as possible within the navy’s ranks.
They gathered us together along a wide observation deck overlooking the academy’s private hangar bay, and one by one called us forward. A tired-looking general I’ve never heard of shook our hands and mumbled congratulations before bestowing upon each of us our first official capsule, a great oily-black egg that shone green in the hangar lights. Everyone connected up and monitored the balance of the ceremony from our pod feeds.
Representatives from Pend Insurance were in attendance too. They brought Velator-class frigates for each graduate. Apparently they hand these things out like candy. I plan not to use the ship at all. I’ve already injected the initial skills that will allow me to fly cruisers and can feel the data percolating in my mind even now. Devan generously gifted me some ISK as a graduation gift; in four days when the skills finish compiling I plan to buy myself a Vexor. It shall be called Happy Face of Death.
I have five days to myself before I’m placed in active service. I plan to spend them with Devan down in Bereye.
And then the Serpentis will finally feel my wrath.