Colin of House Hadden
Caution: This Science Fiction Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, NonConsensual, Science Fiction, Robot, MaleDom,
Desc: Science Fiction Sex Story: Chapter 1 - It's time for young Colin to fly the nest and see what the big bad universe has in store for him. Follow the initial adventures of Colin, Son of House Hadden as he sets out on his first Scout mission in the good ship Red Rose.
The hall was dark and whilst not forbidding, it wasn't homely either. It most resembled a gothic cathedral with its high vaulted ceiling and rows of pews. Where an altar would have been in a cathedral was a small stage where a lone man stood, looking out over the audience.
The audience was clearly split into two parts. Covering the pews of the nave were nearly two hundred young men and women dressed in black. Around the sides and on the balcony above were another seven hundred people representing the parents and families of the students in black.
The congregation rose as one at the order and the opening refrain of Giuseppe Verdi's grand march from Aida filled the auditorium. Down the central aisle, marching in time to the music came the Master of the Spacers' Guild followed by the Master of the College and alongside him the Master of the Scouts' and Explorers' Guild. Behind the three Masters came the numerous officers of the Guild and the tutors who had taught the graduating students in the Spacers' Guild's college.
The grand robes worn by the Guild Master were in pointed contrast to the plain black coveralls of the nearly two hundred of the graduating classes currently standing on either side of the central aisle.
As the last of the dignitaries found their proper places on the small stage at the head of the auditorium the music faded away. Amongst the gathered students one gave a sigh of relief that they wouldn't have to stand through all twelve minutes of the march and joined the rest of his classmates as they sat at a signal from the Master.
"Spacers," declared the Master of Guild, "I congratulate you on the successful completion of your training."
He was forced to pause as the audience burst into a spontaneous bout of cheering and whistling at his words.
He let it run for a short time and then held his hand up for silence. "You are now able to go and find employment amongst the many space-faring enterprises that have allowed our Imperium to prosper and expand. You will find that you are welcome throughout space and will be welcomed as an equal in the brotherhood of spacers."
A smattering of polite applause greeted this statement though no one present really believed the graduating students would be accepted until they'd fulfilled at least one cruise and started to pay off their tuition fees.
As the audience settled down the Master of the Guild began his prepared speech, "In 2006, when the Raenil visited Earth, the idea of growing up to be a spacer, an astronaut as they were called back then, was a fanciful dream. They were considered 'the few' and had to undergo physical and mental training far in excess of anything we inflict on our students today."
This was greeted by a few chuckles from the students.
"Twenty years later and the human race had a need for the new profession of spacers as humanity then numbered some fifteen billion and occupied the twelve planets that the Raenil had identified for us. The Spacers' Guild was formed and it began training the future bearers of goods and people around the Human Imperium. Now, a century later, you are joining that Guild as full members, ready to continue the honours and traditions of that elite few from so long ago."
Applause rang throughout the hall and the Master of Ceremonies called out, "Senior Class of twenty-one thirty, rise and come forward."
As they'd been briefed to do the front two rows of student rose and made their way to the edge of the hall and lined up in order.
"Wendy Miller," announced the Master of Ceremonies and a short girl with flame red hair and a blush to match ascended the short flight of stairs and crossed the stage to the Guild Master. After shaking his hand and receiving a scroll bound with a silver and black ribbon she crossed to the far side of the stage and returned to her seat.
As she left the stage the Master of Ceremonies announced, "John Begood."
On the dais the dignitary in the black robe turned to his neighbour, "How many have you graduated this year?"
The man who wore a deep burgundy robe answered, "There are thirty-two present today and there are another five who are unable to attend the ceremony."
"Not many considering that nearly four hundred started out four years ago, is it Master Killion?" replied the man in black.
"No, it's not," admitted Master Killion, "but like last year we are graduating nearly two hundred others at the end of their third year."
Completing the first three years of the course run by the Spacers' Guild qualified you to take any job on a spaceship without qualifying you for command. Only those who successfully completed all four years would ever command a spaceship.
The man in black nodded, "How many of these do you think will make the grade?" he asked indicating the students who were starting to ascend the stage.
Master Killion frowned, as the head of the college he should have answered 'all of them' but both he and his questioner knew that book learning was only part of what it took to command a spaceship. The truth was that most of these successful students would be found wanting when it came to that final step.
Still wearing the frown he said, "Barring the usual mishaps at least four of them should make it, possibly as many as eight." He looked at the man in black and smiled, "They're a good batch, Fergus, and don't you go mocking them."
Fergus Graham nodded, "Any of them good enough to be Scouts?"
"Good enough for you, who knows?" replied Master Killion, "I know two of them are planning to go down that route."
"Already?" asked Fergus in surprise.
"Already," agreed Master Killion. "You know Angus Graham don't you? He's the oldest son of the Duke's second wife and he's already been promised all of the support of House Graham."
Fergus shook his head slightly in disappointment. His cousin was always trying to get the Scouts' and Explorers' Guild to grant the family more prestige than it already had. Throwing his own son at it wouldn't make the Guild change its standards. Merit was the only thing that counted; well, maybe luck as well, admitted Fergus, but definitely not birth or wealth. They may give them the equipment but only an individual with skill and luck would make the discoveries and get back safely to claim the rewards and adulation that went with success.
"And the other?" asked Fergus.
"Colin Hadden," responded Master Killion, "He's a second son of Jason Hadden."
It was Fergus' turn to frown, the name tickled the back of his mind but he couldn't bring the details to mind.
Master Killion took pity on the baffled Master, "You've probably heard of his grandfather, Robert Hadden. He was the one who settled the planet Dundaff fifty years ago and kept it as his own."
"Bobbie Hadden was his grandfather?" said Fergus in surprise: "I thought the family had become paupers or something when he didn't sell up."
"It appears not," said Master Killion, "Young Hadden arrived four years ago with his grandfather's blessing and stated his intention to claim his rights to join the Guild." He glanced around the hall before continuing, "He's not had it easy, and being a member of a cadet family is not the easiest thing to carry, especially when it's attached to the decision his grandfather made."
Amongst the Scouts' and Explorers' Guild it was normal to 'sell' the rights to anything that was discovered to one of the thirteen great houses, like House Graham or House Jacobs. The planets that had been discovered during the original exodus had, in the main remained unclaimed. To settle on a planet and try to establish your own house was not unheard of but so few had tried and succeeded that it was the considered the height of folly. That House Hadden could send a grandson forward after only fifty years spoke of resilience and fortitude.
"How did he do?" asked Fergus.
"All things considered he didn't fare too badly," admitted the Master. "His final score is in the high seventies, call it third or fourth on the class." He glanced up and then indicated the line of students passing before the Master of the Guild, "Fourth."
The class had lined up in reverse order of their position in the graduating class and the last six were making their way now. The last in line carried a strong resemblance to both Fergus and the Duke. Angus Graham had finished top of the class.
Second in the class was Sonia Hemmer, daughter of Admiral Hemmer, who just happened to be commander of House Graham's military fleet.
Finishing third in the class and leading Sonia towards the stage was Justin Pyott. A dark skinned handsome lad who was more interested in women than spaceships and had only attended the course under dire threats from his father. He had no intention of going into any sort of space service but his innate intelligence had carried him towards the top of the class.
Ahead of him in the line was a lad with fair-hair by the name of Colin Hadden.
As the graduating class marched out of the hall into the bright sunshine of the Montrose summer Colin let out a yell of delight. He wasn't alone in his expression of joy as four years of hard work came to an end.
A warden approached Colin and gently tapped him on the shoulder, "Sir, if you would."
Colin stopped and the warden collected the remainder of his charges as they left the hall. Satisfied that he had the top four of the graduating class he announced, "Lady and Gentlemen, the Master requests that you attend him in the refectory." He glanced from one to the other and noted a hint of confusion.
"My family..." began Justin.
"Taken care of, Sir," declared the warden, "Your guests," he indicated all four graduates, "have been informed of where you will be and should be making their way there as we speak."
"Come on, Jus," said Angus, "You know you can't refuse a Master, even if we've graduated," he added with a grin.
"I wouldn't want to," declared Sonia as she fell in beside Justin.
"If you'll follow me," said the warden who set off without waiting for an answer.
The four graduates followed the warden around the hall passing groups of three-year students who'd found their families and started celebrating their success. Numerous family images were taken that day to adorn walls of houses all over the Imperium.
The college on Montrose accepted students from all over the Imperium and House Graham had taken it upon itself to guarantee their safety whilst they were there. This had allowed House Graham to expand its influence throughout the Imperium without resorting to violence.
As they followed the warden Colin asked Angus, "Why am I here? I can understand you three but I only finished fourth in the class."
"No idea, Colin," said Angus, "but I doubt if it's going to be anything bad. Let's face it," he waved his scroll in the air, "we've passed and they can't take that away from us."
Colin continued to worry as he followed the warden through the college's garden. As the group entered the refectory he spotted three men dressed in the robes of Masters waiting for them. The warden guided the four students towards the cluster of Masters and disappeared as soon as he'd caught the eye of Master Killion.
"Gentlemen," said Master Killion, "allow me to present this year's class seniors: Angus Graham, Sonia Hemmer, Justin Pyott and Colin Hadden."
Each of the students gave a short bow towards the Masters as their names were announced.
"This is Master Brown of the Montrose Spacers' Guild and Master Graham of the Scouts' and Explorers' Guild."
"How does it feel to have finished the course?" asked Master Brown.
"It's a joyous day," replied Angus with a grin.
Sonia nodded her head in agreement and when Master Brown turned his attention to her she added, "It's been an interesting time but now we can do the job for real."
"And that is what you want?" asked Master Brown.
Nodding in confirmation she replied, "I'll be joining the House Navy when the next intake is called up, Sir."
Master Brown caught the frown on Justin's face and turned to him, "You don't seem to be happy, Mr. Pyott?"
"It's not a case of being happy, Sir," replied the young man, "It's just that I'm going to be having a fight with my father concerning my future."
"He doesn't want you to go into space?" asked the Master in surprise.
"No, Sir, I'm the one who doesn't want to go into space," declared Justin.
"May I ask why you undertook this particular course then?" asked the Master sounding a trifle put out.
"My father insisted," replied Justin, "and House Graham requires that those controlling interstellar shipping need to members of the Guild, whether they go into space or not." He looked from Master Brown to Master Killion and back again, "That's the only reason I attended. From here I plan on going to the Economics Guild and completing their course."
Master Brown looked to the college Master, who was nodding.
"You were aware of Mr. Pyott's intentions?" he asked.
"Yes Sir, he's made no secret of the matter since he arrived," replied Master Killion.
Master Brown raised his eyebrows and gave Master Killion a look that clearly said we would discuss this later.
Master Graham stepped into the lengthening silence, "I understand that you plan on becoming a Scout, Mr. Hadden?"
Colin looked across to the Master dressed in black and nodded, "That is my intention, Sir."
"You have the necessary equipment or funding?" asked Master Graham.
"I hope it is in place, Sir," replied Colin, "But I will know for sure when I return to Dundaff."
"I see," replied Master Graham. "Will you be working out of Tagliana?"
Like the Tortora space station to the galactic North, the Tagliana space station had been established to the galactic south of explored Imperial space and was built by all the Great Houses as a common place to trade and launch exploration missions from. As such, each House had a representative on the station and it was considered a neutral zone during the occasional House conflict.
Colin nodded from under hooded eyes, it was never wise to reveal too much as a Scout but lying to a Master could cause even more trouble if the deceit ever came to light.
"Drop in and see me there before you depart," said Master Graham, his softly worded request an order to any member of the Scouts' and Explorers' Guild.
"Sir," agreed Colin without enthusiasm.
"It has been a pleasure meeting you all," announced Master Brown, "but I see your guests have gathered so I'll let you go and meet them."
A flurry of thank-you's greeted his statement and the four graduates happily headed for the safer waters of friends and family.
Bill and Wendy greeted Colin by wrapping him up in a hug as though he'd been their son rather than just a lodger at their home.
"I'm so proud of you," beamed Wendy as she released the young man. "You never told us you were doing so well."
"Fourth," crowed Bill, "Your father is going to be so proud of you."
"Not as proud as his grandfather," added Wendy as she gave Colin another hug. "It's just a shame they couldn't have been here for your graduation," she finished.
"Credit's tight," admitted Colin finally free of Wendy's grasp, "it would have been a waste of funds to come here just for a party."
"True," agreed Bill, "but we've got the ceremony recorded so you'll be able to show them everything when you get back."
Bill Houseman had worked for Colin's grandfather many years ago and had offered to put up the young man in his home for the final two years of college. Bill Houseman had worked for Colin's grandfather many years ago and had offered to put up the young man in his home for the final two years of college. This was the period when the college no longer offered dormitory accommodation to the students. Bill had refused all of Colin's efforts to contribute towards his keep stating that the debt he owed the Hadden family couldn't be paid. To Colin's frustration he would never reveal just what the debt was or what he could do to mitigate it. The young man had made a promise to himself to investigate the matter once he was back home on Dundaff.
"Colin, may I present my father, Admiral Hemmer" called Sonia as the two of them approached Colin's group.
"Sir," responded Colin as he regarded the man who led the military fleet of House Graham. The tall, slender man reminded Colin of his daughter. They both had the same studious air and a sense of detachment from the buzz around them.
"Sonia here tells me you're planning on being a Scout?" said the Admiral, his tone making it a question.
"I hope to, Sir," responded Colin.
"For the House?" asked the Admiral.
"For House Hadden," replied Colin warily.
"And who are they allied with?" pressed the Admiral.
"We're sept to House Graham," responded Colin looking the Admiral in the eye.
"But you are your own masters," pushed the Admiral, "Aren't you?"
Colin felt his calm beginning to slip, "Our honour has never been questioned, Sir," he responded stiffly, his hand dropping to his hip. Fortunately for all it was not permitted to carry weapons within the college grounds.
"And I for one would not do so," replied the Admiral.
"That's just as well," said Angus from behind Colin.
Colin jumped in surprise, as did Sonia. Neither of them had seen Angus approaching the group.
Angus Graham may have been the son of a second wife but he stood high in House Graham and no one would willingly cross him. That he was normally an affable sort of fellow didn't mean that he didn't know how to use that power if the need arose.
Admiral Hemmer knew the young man and his position in the House. Who had the greater say was a matter for debate and an issue that neither of them had tried to resolve.
"You never know when I might need some help out there in the back of beyond," added Angus as he slipped his arm around the Admiral's daughter. "I may have to rely on Colin rather than your lovely daughter to save my scrawny neck."
"Why, Angus," asked Sonia, "What makes you think I'd even try?"
"Because you don't like to see people cry," replied Angus, "and my mother would flood the planet if her poor little boy was lost in space."
The tension dissipated as everyone laughed at the young man's antics.
The rest of the evening was enjoyable as the graduates slowly mixed with the guests before taking their leave of the college for a final time.