Author's Notes: Hello everyone, just an idea that has been bouncing around and I thought that I would give it a try. As always I own nothing. Yes, I know they use the metric system, but I am American so I will be using the imperial system at times. I own nothing.
The clanging of the alarm sounded throughout the hab-block, rousing all within. Theobald Traub forced his eyes open and groaned, five more minutes. That was all he wanted, just five more minutes. It was not to be; however. The alarm would not let him go back to sleep and he knew all too well the consequences of being late. He rose from his sleeping mat, pulled on his robe and walked out the door of his living space. It was considered a mark of his station as a mid-level scribe at Leiner & Leiner Brothers Shipping Company that he was allowed a living space of eight by eight feet all to himself when often whole families had to share similar space.
Once in the corridor he fell into his place in line to go to the communal showering. There were two line, one for men and one for women. As they entered their respective areas some of the more adventurous young men tried to peek into the women's' shower, but Traub did not. At nineteen and his rank he felt it his duty to set an example and he knew full well the consequences of being caught, even though he did not see any proctors around one needed to always look out for informers. As he entered he stripped off his clothing and walked to the nearest faucet which he shared with three others. Time was short so there was no time to talk. After scrubbing and rinsing for two minutes the water was cut off and they made room for the next group and walked to the exit where piles of clean robes awaited them. They slipped these on and made their way to the hab chapel for the mandatory predawn service.
They all filled in and sat dawn on the hard wooden benches and waited for Preacher Pilzer to arrive to administer the daily sermon before work began. Pilzer was a good ten minutes late and though no one said anything Traub knew that people were getting restless, knowing that their pay would be docked for any time that they missed from their shifts. At last Preacher Pilzer arrived and, after making the sign of the Aquila, began his sermon. As he droned on Traub let his mind wonder. The sermon was essentially the same as every other one he had delivered, expounding on the virtues of citizens to do their duty to the Emperor and the Imperium. Pilzer merely changed the wording around a bit each time. At last the sermon ended and they filled out of the chapel. Once out the clean robes were taken from them and the clothing that they had been wearing before showering was given back to them. The robes were taken away to be cleaned and once a month Traub and all the others would be expected to pay for their cleaning. Just then the speaker system blared to life.
"Attention residents. In order to ensure that work quotes are met for today you shall all go to your places of employment immediately, the morning meal has been cancelled." There were a few groans from children which the adults, who had suspected as much, quickly hushed.
They trooped down to the public transport station and there they began to move apart, with the various people moving to the transport which would take them to their places of work. Traub moved to the one which would take him near the planet's only spaceport. Wayfarer's Haven, the planet which Traub inhabited, had little in the way of natural resources and would likely have been regulated to Agri-World had it not been for its one unusual feature. The world was located at the juncture of several stable, in as much as such things could be considered stable, warp currents. The result being that many ships passed through the system as they went about their way. Naturally many of these were merchantmen and Wayfarer's Haven, or just Haven for short, became a place where many merchants bought and sold goods and the majority of the population not employed in agricultural work were employed in the unloading, moving and loading of cargo.
Traub, fortunately, was spared from either task. Leiner & Leiner Brothers Shipping Company, despite what the name said, did not ship cargo themselves. Rather they bought and sold it and at times acted as brokers for others. Traub's task was that his father, grandfather and indeed as far back as Traub knew was to assist in the management of the company's accounts. Traub spent his days staring at rolls of parchment checking and correcting columns of numbers dealing with the profits, loses and expenses of the company. He would then pass this on to the senior clerks who would then check and correct his entries. It was monotonous work, but at least he was not breaking his back in a field or warehouse.
I suppose it could be worse. Traub thought as he settled down on his desk and began to work.
The day past slowly, as all days seemed to do. The work was extensive, but it was nothing that Traub had not done a thousand times before and due to the fact it was highly unlikely that even if he made a mistake that it would ever be noticed. Indeed he could very easily imagine the piles of parchment that he and the others worked on being used to create a musty mountain of parchment in some storage room somewhere. So while his body checked and recorded the numbers on the parchment in front of him in almost servitor-like fashion, he allowed his mind to wander to more pleasant matters.
Haven's population was strictly controlled in order that the population not cut into the food exports which brought quite a bit of profit to the planet. The population cap meant that Traub had been an only child, as many of the people whom he had grown up with had been. This meant that parents who could afford to often indulge their one and only child as best they could. At the time of his birth his father, Herman Traub, had already risen to the position of Senior Scribe at Leiner & Leiner and this granted him greater capacity for the indulgence of his child.
Theobald had, of course attended, the schola sponsored by Leiner & Leiner for the training of its future employees, but he had gone beyond that. He had always loved to read and his father had been able to secure him several books. Theobald had devoured these with relish and still had those books with him.
Most dealt with the planet's history and how it had been reunited with the Imperium during the Great Crusade. At the time the planet had been conquered by a xenos race and had cruelly subjugated the human population. According to both the books and the sermons preached on the anniversary of Haven's liberation the people had despaired and had cried out for deliverance and the God-Emperor heard their cries and sent his Angels of Death, the Adeptus Astartes of the Raven Guard led by their Primarch, the demigod Corvus Corax himself.
The demigod had conducted a brilliant campaign, striking from the shadows and denying the foe an enemy that they could bring their whole strength to bear on. The accounts of the end of the campaign varied, some saying the foe was completely destroyed and some saying that they had fled into the dark of space, too fearful to ever face the Emperor's wrath again. Regardless of the fate of their former masters the People of Haven had been saved. They pledged their loyalty to the Emperor and the Imperium and had been faithful servants of the Imperium ever since.
Theobald have loved those stories and often in his youth he and his friends had often played at refighting the ancient battles. Their favorite place had been the Ruins. The Ruins consisted of a part of the hab-block which had collapsed due to poor construction and lack of maintenance. As a child the Ruins seemed endless and while there had been a number of calls for the Ruins to be rebuilt, but various governors had dismissed this, citing the cost and the need to keep the population in check. While this may or may not have been a wise decision as for as the adults were concerned, for Theobald and his friends it had been wonderful. While they were, of course, forbidden to enter the Ruins for safety reasons that had not stopped them. The call of levels and levels of ruins for them to climb through and explore, more than they could all see in a lifetime, was simply too much for them to resist, even if they had wanted to.
They had often sipped away from the schola to play and explore, as far as Theobald was concerned the courses of their lives were already determined anyway and so it did not matter if they did well in the schola, or even if they were to show up. Of course they were beaten by the instructors and their parents on more than one occasion, but that had not stopped them. The Ruins had represented more than just excitement to Theobald, it had represented freedom. He would at times slip off to the Ruins at night, in ways he preferred to go alone, dodging patrols of Enforcers and moving through the ruins in the dark. Even in his youth he knew that it was the closest thing to freedom that he was ever likely to know. Sometime he would climb to the very top and stare out at the stars. He sometimes wish he could travel and see the stars, but that was an impossible dream.
Most people on Haven never left the world and most of them were those who did so as members of the Imperia Guard and Theobald had no desire to do any such thing. He enjoyed playing at being a warrior, but he had no desire to actually be one. He knew about aliens only from having them mentioned in sermons and while they were portrayed as weak and cowardly the mere thought of actually fighting one filled him with a dread that he dared not mention to anyone, certainly not the priest when he took confessions. So instead he roamed the ruins at night and when he could talked to any travelers who were willing to talk to him. At last; however, he grew old enough to leave the schola and join his father at Leiner & Leiner and there was no more time for adventure, only day after day of ledgers, numbers and monotony.
A bell chimed, signaling that the time of the mid-day meal had arrived. They all rose from their desks and moved toward the feeding hall for their thirty minute lunch break. As the one holding the senior position in their room of work Traub was permitted to enter the hall first. He took his plate of nutrients and headed to his usual place at one of the tables, he favored this table because it had a fine view. The view in question was of Vallie Duffus, one of the stewardesses charged with serving the owners and their important guests.
Though a few years older than Traub, he found her highly attractive. She was not beautiful in the conventional sense, or she would have been serving the owners and guests in a more intimate manner, being slightly thicker around the waist than many found desirable, but Traub did not mind as she had nice eyes and a nice smile. Though their positions meant that they did not interact frequently on the few occasions that they had spoken he had found her very kind and polite. Indeed, he was already composing his request for permission that he could enter into a marriage contract with her. He was sure that she would say yes because while he was not the most hansom of men, being a bit too tall and think by local standards, he was likely to one day assume his father's position of Senior Scribe, which was as high as one of his class could hope to go and he would be able to provide her with a standard of living beyond that which she enjoyed now and would be more than able to provide for their child. Many relationships were founded on a lot less. A chime sounded, indicating that the meal break was half over. He took his mind from dreaming and turned his attention fully to his meal.
At long last the day ended and they all lined up to receive their pay for the day. One by one they went up to the pay clerk, who placed the coins in their hands. Standing next to the clerk was a man who took coins way to cover the cost of the temple robes, tithes to the Church, cost of food and rent and all the other taxes and expenses. They then all trooped down to the public transport which took them back to their habitations. Once there they went to the feeding hall and ate their dinner. Once this was done the people were released for free time. As there was very little to actually do the majority simply returned to their living units, Traub among them.
Once he was in his unit he went to the small pile of books next to his sleeping mat. While old and worn they were all that remained of his parents, who had passed several years earlier due to a public transport accident. He read these till the lights were turned off for the night. He then slipped off his cloths and got under the blanket on his sleeping mat to rest till the next day to begin again.
This is it. Traub thought, feeling the old frustration build up within him. This is my life. From now till the end of my days.
Author's Notes: Well what did you think? I know nothing really happpend, that's next time, I mostly wanted to establish things. While this is about a Rouge Trader, it will be some time before he becomes one I wanted a logical reason why he, of lowly birth could obtain such a title. All will hopefully become clear soon. Till then please pray for all who need it and may Jesus bless you.