Bella Gerant Alii
A/N: Hello again. This was an idea that randomly popped into my head during English class. This story is set in an alternate universe, neither the Leviathan universe nor ours, but a mix of the two with some extra. So don't get mad at me for historical inaccuracy. Also, Deryn is an American with a British/Scottish background. The story is set in the beginning of World War II (ish, because American tech is modern in this story) but (again) in an alternate universe. The story will probably be rewritten when it's finished and made a whole lot better, but hang in there for now.
Disclaimer: Scott Westerfeld owns all things Leviathan related.
Copywright: I own all things in the Bella GerantAlii universe that do not intersect with the Leviathan universe or our own.
Deryn sharp stood outside of the registration office nervously. Could she do this? Of course she could. This was all she'd dreamed of since... well, forever. She took a deep breath and pressed the buzzer.
"Dylan Sharp, I'm here for the airmen trials" Deryn gulped. Her voice sounded high and squeaky. If she kept this up, she'd be discovered in an instant. Deepening her voice, she tried again. "My code is 1914AVH15" The door swung open before her, and she stepped into the cool lobby, bustling businessmen rummaging through briefcases and luggage.
A tall lady wearing a brown bowler hat and a purple skirt with a matching blazer approached Deryn through the crowd.
"Hello, my name is Dr. Nora Barlow, please follow me" The businesswoman said in a brisk tone, indicating with her head a small door a couple of feet away. She was a tall, pretty lady that exuded an air of importance and confidence. Deryn couldn't help but admire her.
As they reached the flight deck, it became apparent that Dr. Nora Barlow wasn't just some runwayloader; a term Deryn's da had used for people of jobs with no real importance that hung around the flight deck. Workmen and officers alike saluted as she passed, and greetings were called from all corners of the runway yard. The lady was a boffin (another term Deryn's da used, this one meaning scientist or engineer.)
Deryn glanced at the lady boffin with a newfound respect. The scientific field is not one easily mastered, especially not by a woman. Not that Deryn was against woman's rights or anything, (she was here, wasn't she) but there were not more than sixteen known accomplished woman scientists around the world, and it appears she was staring at one. Dr. Nora Wright Barlow bent over in front of a sign-up sheet, filling in the appropriate sheets with Dylan's name and her own.
The reality of the situation crashed down on Deryn as the lady boffin turned back to her. Deryn Veronica Sharp was about to take an airmen trial that would determine whether or not she would be issued her very own plane and offered a place in the US Air-force. Sounds simple enough, right? Wrong. Deryn was (obviously) a girl, and girls were not allowed in the US Air-force.
The original plan was to have Deryn's twin brother enroll, pretending to be eighteen instead of fifteen, which would've been easy because of his sturdy build and deep voice, but after a practice flight two months ago that went horribly awry, killing their da, a retired Air-force man himself and leaving Dylan permanently crippled, Deryn took his place. The forms were already filled out, and Deryn's cropped haircut and boyish height made her and her brother easily mistaken for each other from a distance of over five feet.
There were some differences, of course. Deryn's features were more feminine, giving her an almost fairy-like look, and Dylan was much more muscular, but with some careful tailoring, that was soon fixed.
It wasn't as if Deryn had gone against Dylan's will, after making her promise to write, he had practically forced her out the door. The people back home thought Deryn was going to finishing school. Her mom would figure out the truth soon enough, but by then it'd be too late; or so Deryn hoped. That thought snapped her back to reality like a whip.
Dr. Barlow was looking at Deryn quizzically, wondering why she had zoned out suddenly. The lady boffin placed her hand on Deryn's shoulder, gave her a reassuring pat, and said "the best of luck, Dylan."
Deryn took a deep breath and forced her feet to take her over to the slowly-growing line of young men ages eighteen through thirty-five. It was time.
A/N: so….. wadya think? Just to confirm, there will be Dalek in later chappies' but it may take a while to get to that point in the story.