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Chairman Emmelia Spenser, head of the Galactic Mining Guild Board of Directors, is one of my favorite characters. She’s the most powerful woman in the known galaxy and isn’t afraid to wield her power when it suits her. Fortunately for everyone, she’s tempered with high intelligence and a great deal of bureaucratic savvy. She never shakes her fist without good reason.

Dealing with Commandant John Riley, head of the Mining Guild, isn’t easy. He’s cagy, clever, vicious and cunning. He’s become a pain in Emmelia’s shapely backside and is unexpectedly dangerous. Emmelia has been in contact with Wil and others, hoping to contain Riley. Unfortunately, their efforts haven’t been fully successful.

Emmelia Spenser addressed the Board of Directors, trying hard to remain calm. The more she thought about Riley and what he was putting her through personally, not to mention the Guild and the planet, she could hardly think. Taking a deep breath, she called the meeting to order.

“Members of the Board, I need not tell you the events of the last twenty-four hours. It’s obvious to us all the situation we now have here has surpassed anything we could have anticipated.”

The men nodded. Sissy chittered with agitation, fiddling with her com-link.

“I met briefly with Navigation Board Chairman Shimmelfenig, attempting to assure her that we are doing everything possible to contain this situation. However, despite my assurances, they and the planetary government complained loudly enough to the Galactic Committee, that they sent in the Marines. A contingent of them was here.” She held up her hands to quell protest. Nodding to Sissy, she gave the floor to her.

“Chairman Spenser enlisted the help of the Marines to rid us of the mercenaries. We have the assurance of Captain Drexel that he will call down troops to contain them. However, we should levy a curfew for the townspeople, Guild members and tourists effective immediately.

“I further add, we should advise everyone to stay home unless absolutely unavoidable. I anticipate the mercenaries will not take kindly to the Marine involvement. The likelihood of armed resistance is eminent.”

Muttering followed this remark. Spenser was appalled at her own lack of planning. None of this had occurred to her.

“I have taken the liberty of sending a message to the planetary police force to levy lenient martial law, requesting all residents, visitors and Guild members to remain inside for the next twenty-four hours.”

The Board gasped in unison, Spenser included. She had allowed her personal feelings to interfere with her judgement. Never in her entire career had she been so unprofessional.

“I know I speak for the entire Board, Ssylvenia, when I say thank you for your foresight in this matter. Let me assure you, I have plans for Mr. Riley,” Spenser mused aloud, dismissing them abruptly by walking into her office.

As they left, the men said nothing, thanking God that The Dragon Lady wasn’t after them the way she was Riley.

© 2014 Dellani Oakes

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