Honor. Courage. Commitment. Fangs.
Corporal Jack Coby appears in the stories Powerhouse, Nightmares, and Lockdown
The Marines snapped to their feet. The floor shook underfoot. All of them had the hardened skin, thick muscles, and heavy bones that defined their series designation. The scientists originally responsible for labeling rollover classes hadn’t been compassionate men. T stood for troll.
The captain said, “You know, you basically look like a super-large man. Keep your mouth shut, put your hands in your pockets, and my granddaddy would’ve said, ‘you could pass.’ Minimal scute development. That’s why you overheat. No brow ridge to protect the eyes, so you’re photosensitive. The real downside of the Y-variant is that you’re in the bottom quartile for muscle power for the T-series and short, relatively speaking. Puts you at a hand-to-hand disadvantage against other Tees.”
I could still rip you in half, Coby thought. “I wasn’t in a fight, sir.”
“Fast thinking.” Coby halted beside Kris. Steam rose off his armor where snow had melted already. “I was sure we’d be cleaning up porter pancakes.”
Kris realized with a stab of jealousy that Coby had recovered from a worse landing than hers, checked on the porters, and oriented himself in the time it took her to help the air elemental stand up. Practice makes perfect, she reminded herself, and thought of how many times she’d said that after her daughter’s skating lessons, after cheering for her son at track meets, after clapping at debate competitions.
Coby had been a Marine most of his short life. He’d surely had a lot of practice landing on his feet.