I’m delighted to be able to sit down for a chat with Gabol Raimes, Captain of the merchant vessel Paladin, to talk about the experience he shared with us in The Sanctification Molecule. He is an enigmatic man with red eyes and a signature look consisting of a full skirted long leather coat, which he always wears with the collar turned up, and musketeer boots. The whole effect gives him a presence that is at once both intensely attractive and slightly disquieting. He doesn’t smile much and doesn’t do eye contact either.
Captain Raimes, welcome and thank you for being here. I know you have a busy schedule.
You’re very welcome.
We’ve all had a little time to read your story and get to know you, and I get the impression that you’re a very private person.
That’s certainly true.
What made such a private person as yourself decide to tell the story of The Sanctification Molecule?
I wanted to give others who may be in similar situations the encouragement to speak out, to do something to stop men like Kletus Vanroy. Men like him, rich and powerful psychopathic leaders of huge conglomerates, have the means with which to engender great fear among their workforce and anyone who comes into contact with them. It is this fear that enables them to keep doing what they’re doing, ruining lives and livelihoods, breaking up families, killing with impunity, and it is this same fear that prevents the ordinary people like you and me from speaking out. I wanted to do my little bit to help redress the balance a little.
Tell us about Kletus Vanroy. Who is he and how did he affect your life?
Kletus Vanroy was the head of a huge conglomerate called the Potentiaflow Corporation. The company makes arms for the military and also does research and development on new projects they think might be of benefit generally. They are often at the cutting edge of military development and through their various smaller companies, have a presence is almost every home. If you have a high tech gadget in your home, the chances are good The Potentiaflow Corporation made it, developed it, or had some other input into it. When I was in the military, doing the standard five years all people from Kylhari are expected to do, his company developed some new hardware, guns, air filters, body armour, that kind of stuff. The military from many planets combined in an exercise in which much of this new kit was trialed. The group I was with had new guns to try out. We were required to try out the kit and make a report at the end. If I tell you anymore detail, I might spoil it for those who haven’t yet read the book.
What was the Sanctification Project?
It was all about terraforming. This is the process by which a lifeless or barren planet is turned into a habitable one much more quickly than nature alone takes to do the process. On its own, nature takes thousands of years to change a planet into a habitable place, but the most modern terraforming processes do it in a few decades. The Sanctification Project was a process by which it could be done in weeks.
Forgive me, but isn’t that a good thing?
Not the way Kletus Vanroy’s process worked, no. It was terrible, awful, a cost I decided was way too high. So my crew and I decided to try and stop him.
And you did just that.
We did, but we paid a high price. Our success didn’t come for free.
What are you doing now, since leaving that experience behind?
We’re doing what we do best, working. We have two new crew members who are fitting in great and despite working most of the time, we manage to have a laugh and we do take the odd day to just bum around and behave like dicks.
(we both laugh and he blushes)
Sometimes you gotta just be a dick or you’ll go crazy.
What does Captain Raimes like to do when he’s being a dick for a day?
(he laughes) Well I do a martial art every day for at least two hours. One time, we took a weekend off and camped out in the middle of nowhere in the deepest, darkest forest you ever saw. My co-pilot, Beck, decided to get up in the early hours and creep around making scary noises and creeping the rest of us out. His wife made him sleep on the floor for a week after that. We went to another place that promised us snow but we got there to find it unseasonably warm and ended up knee deep in thick mud, so we had mud ball fight. It’s all schoolboy type stuff but we let off some steam and have a great laugh. I believe that’s why we’re such a tight team, because we have a laugh and be dicks together sometimes.
Will you ever return to Kylhari?
No. I made that decision during the time outlined in the book and I don’t intend to change my mind about it. I’m a new person now; all the years since then and now allowed me to become Gabol Raimes, the guy with the coat and boots who will always deliver on a deal.
I have to, once again, mention the look, Captain Raimes (he grins). That’s a unique look you’ve got going. For someone who is known to be a bit reclusive, you sure know how to get noticed.
This look gets me a lot of business. I’m memorable because of the way I look and even if people don’t know my name, if they’re looking for a haulage firm or someone to source something they need, they’ll say, “how about that guy with the coat and boots, I’ve heard he’s an honest man.” Ask most business men if they know the guy with the coat and boots, and the chances are they’ll be able to give you my number. This look isn’t really me, it’s a contrived business acquisition tool and it works, believe me. And I’m not reclusive, by the way. Neither am I anti social, which is another label people attach to me without getting to know me. I learned long ago that people are most often untrustworthy, and I have no desire to keep dealing with the fallout of one deception after another so I keep a little distance between myself and people I don’t know.
Is there a lady in your life yet, Captain
(he blushes and laughs to hide obvious embarrassment) All I’m going to say on that matter is maybe.
Will there be more from the Paladin and her crew in the future?
We’ve no definite plans at this time, but never say never.
Thank you so much for giving us your time, I know you’re a busy guy. I wish you luck and hope to meet you again.
You’re very welcome. Be safe and remember, life is too short waste time regretting the past. Learn and then get living.