Fiera settled in one of the seats of the transport shuttle. As she leaned back, she heard a little cough at her elbow. A well dressed woman whose clothes screamed central worlds was staring at her. Fiera caught a whiff of some exotic flower and spice. “Excuse me, dear, but I think you’re in the wrong seat.”
Fiera glanced at the seat number. “I’m right where my dad paid for me to be.”
“My dear, there is no one in these backwater planets who could afford something such as this,” the woman said. “I think you should take yourself back to third class now and let whoever really has that seat sit there.”
“I'm perfectly capable of reading a boarding ID,” Fiera said. “So no, I'm not moving.”
The woman’s pleasant smile faded. “I am not spending my trip sitting next to a colonial,” she said.
“You're in the colonies,” Fiera said. “Chances are most of us are from here.”
The woman turned to one of the staff. “Move this girl away from my seat.”
“Young lady, do you have your boarding ID?” the attendant asked.
“Yes I do,” Fiera said. She handed it over.
The attendant scanned the boarding ID. She turned pale as Fiera's name appeared on her pad. “I’m sorry, ma’am. But Ms. Rezouac is quite correct in this is the seat that she paid for. If you wish to move, we can find you a seat back in third class.”
“I demand a new first class seat,” the woman said.
“I’m sorry, ma’am. We're a small shuttle with a limited number of first class seats. All of them are full,” the attendant said. “You can either take the seat you were assigned by the Port Authority or you can move back to third class.”
“I can’t believe this,” the woman said. Her voice was getting louder. “You’re telling me that I’m going to have to spend the entire trip to Ismillon next to some unlettered colonial drek?”
“You’re only going to Ismillon? Then I don’t mind if you sit next to me. I’m heading to Bouarus,” Fiera said with a sweet smile.
“Why should I have to deal with the filth in an indent gang?” the woman asked. She looked like there was something nasty under her nose.
“I am not indentured,” Fiera said. “I’m starting at the university. Biogenetics and Intergalactic Studies.”
The woman started sputtering. Fiera was hard pressed not to start laughing. The attendant looked to be in the same condition. “I insist that I be moved to another seat in first class,” the woman repeated. “Make someone else sit next to this person.”
“I’ll gladly switch with you,” a young man said. “You can have my seat.”
“Thank you,” the woman said. He handed her his boarding pass and took hers. They could hear her shrieks as she was led back to third class.