Reuben swore under his breath as he missed his target yet again. These mock space fights were completely different from fighting on land. Firing a rifle was more tactile. Swiveling around in a Cillo gunner's chair made him feel completely out of control.
"You're trying too hard, again," Sergeant Bamtrob commented casually over the ship's comm.
Easy for him to say. He's piloting the 'verting thing.
"Stop trying to fight the motion of the ship. Work with it."
Reuben squeezed his eyes shut in frustration. He had been at this for 5 days straight. He almost missed the intense physical aspect of basic training. That had been nothing more than an endurance contest. This required skill. Skills he didn't have.
But he knew he wouldn't be able to move on until he got this. He wouldn't give up now. Not this early in his military career.
"The next round of targets are being launched. Get ready, cadet."
Reuben opened his eyes and forced himself to relax. He felt Bamtrob adjust the ship's heading and allowed his body to follow the motion rather than move how he wanted to move.
Out of the corner of his eye he caught the small motion of one of the targets. He felt the ship adjust. Using the motion of the roll to his advantage, he aimed ahead of the target and fired.
It exploded in a small cloud.
Elated, Reuben aimed again at the next target but missed. He missed two more times before he finally hit another target.
Another round of targets launched.
Reuben felt himself become part of the ship. He was completely focused. All that existed was his gunner's chair and the targets flying by.
Two more hits.
"Good," Bamtrob comment.
Reuben was startled. He had forgotten about the sergeant.
"You're improving. Might be some hope for you yet, cadet."