Ten

Ten

A Chapter by Natasha Reams

Vharri was silent as she disembarked from her ship on Shyria. The spaceport was small and could hardly be called busy. Only a small commotion of some well-dressed alien complaining to the authorities about a stolen ship disturbed the quiet jungle.

It impressed Vharri that Saiyani, with her severe lack of experiences, had managed to make it so far. After seeing the destruction on the Regalion space station, which had ultimately led her to this world, she had not been sure the young Vis was still alive. In a brief lapse of emotion she recalled the sight of the destroyed ship at the station. It had been massive, and likely well armed. The aliens Vharri had spoken to had said the same man that had destroyed it was also after Saiyani.

Another lapse of emotion came over her as Vharri also remembered their description of Saiyani’s escape. The foolish child had shown her wings and talons to everyone there. Even used her powers! If the Elders were to know of this they would demand she be brought home immediately!

Calm yourself, Vharri paused to take a deep breath. She is young and foolish. If Saiyani was smart she would learn from her mistakes at the space station.

As she walked Vharri examined the various aliens in the spaceport. Most were of a feline race, but there were plenty of the fleshy Nacrians and Skandians. It felt odd to be surrounded by so much foreign culture. At over seven hundred standard years old, Vharri had never considered leaving Yievis and her people. She could not imagine doing so even for the sake of a vision. It is not like Saiyani is the only one capable of pursuing such a vision.

Vharri sighed. She was wasting too much time pondering on what Saiyani was thinking. All that mattered right now was catching up to her and observing. Unfortunately, all she had to go one was the kind of ship Saiyani had escaped on. A T-35 Freighter according to one of the space station witnesses. They had called it outdated and clunky. If that was so, it likely did not go further than this system.  

She approached a Nacrian worker in a faded jumpsuit to inquire about the freighter. The worker’s eyes lit up at the name of its model, but seemed unwilling to give a firm yes or no as to whether it was the correct one. Vharri quietly reached into an inner pocket of her long cloak and held out two thin pieces of metal. Apparently they were a common type of currency in the galaxy used in trading.

“One of the passengers or crew members would be tall and cloaked like myself,” Vharri held out the money expectantly.

          The worker grabbed it quickly, glancing around as if for spies. “Know nothing about the crew, but there’re only two ‘T’ class freighters I’ve heard of in the past month.”

          He proceeded to describe the location of a recently crashed ship in the jungle. The second of the spacecraft he had mentioned had already left the spaceport the day before yesterday. Thanking the worker, Vharri turned to survey the spaceport again. A group of the feline aliens were gathered near the spaceport gate leading out into the jungle. As she started to approach one male blocked her path while holding a long spear.

“Outsiders are not welcome in the jungle. Turn back,” His voice was quite an intimidating growl.

She stood firm, “I am looking for a companion of mine. Her ship crashed in the jungle. I need to see it.”

“If the ship crashed she is dead,” The male growled back simply.

“Nonetheless,” Vharri sighed, tired of this conversation. “I need to see it. If none of you will guide me I will fly there myself.”

The feline’s spear came up to her throat. “No outsiders may pass into the jungle! It is for your safety as well.”

Very well then, she thought as she pushed back the hood of her cloak. Each of the aliens stepped back in surprise at the sight of her scaly head and long jawline. With a grin Vharri showed off her two rows of sharp teeth.

“Show me the way now, if you would.”

The male backed down with a scowl. He barked orders at one of the other aliens in their native tongue. A scrawny young male stepped forward with his chin raised. Vharri nodded appreciatively and followed the young guide out of the gate.

The two traveled for several hours along the massive jungle branches. Along the way Vharri noticed several landmarks the spaceport worker had mentioned. Silently she realized she could have easily made it to the ship on her own. It also would have been much faster than following the alien youngling. At this pace she had plenty of time to think; however, thinking was not what she wanted. Only catching up with Saiyani was on her mind.

By the time the planet’s pale sun had reached its zenith the guide had led Vharri to the site of the crash. It looked to Vharri as if nothing had been touched since the incident. Surely the locals would have scavenged the ship for parts by now? When she voiced her question, the youngling looked horrified at the thought. Unfortunately, this one did not seem to understand standard speech, and so Vharri had to hold back her questions.

Stepping inside the ship Vharri felt a considerable drop in temperature. Ice clung to the darker corners of the ship, dripping slowly on the metal. Inside the cockpit was even more ice. It looked as though the entire ship had been coated with it when it crashed. Vharri stared at the wreckage in alarm. Had Saiyani managed to do this? If she had, she would be considerably weak now.

Quickly Vharri tapped the screen of a small device on her wrist. It had come with her ship when she departed Yievis, and was connected to another Vis craft back home. After several more taps and staticy voice could be heard.

“Erag?” Vharri’s voice slightly echoed. “I found the ship they used to leave the space station.”

“Any… -ign of the-…?” The fellow Elder’s voice faded in and out of clarity with such a long distance between them.

“The ship had been here a week according to the locals. There is a problem though. It looks like Saiyani had coated the entire ship in ice before it crashed. Some of it still has not melted.”

“Tru...y?” Despite the interference Vharri could tell Erag was worried. “Mus… find … -uickly.”

“I agree,” Vharri started to make her way out of the ship. “Even if she had managed to find somewhere cool enough to recover from the shock, Saiyani will have difficulty using her powers.”

“When… find her…, be… pa-ent.”

Vharri frowned. “I am losing you, Erag. I will call again when I have found her.”

Tapping the screen once more to end the conversation, Vharri stepped out into the jungle again. The young guide was still waiting nervously for her. This time as they journeyed back to the spaceport Vharri could not help but think of Saiyani. She was nearly an adult and the youngling nearly kills herself by using too much energy at once! Surely she had learned as all Vis had that the amount of Breath from one’s core we can use grows as we get older. Krota, being the eldest, had more power at her disposal than any other living Vis. Saiyani’s power level right now would be a mere worm just starting to burrow into the soil.

Hours later, back in the spaceport, Vharri was outraged. The gall of such a reckless youngling! She walked up to the worker from before and shoved more currency at him.

“How did the crew of the crashed ship leave this planet?”

Surprised, the worker sputtered out his answer without even taking the money. “T-they stole a ship. That guy who was yelling earlier… they stole his!”

“What kind of ship? How can I find it?” Vharri demanded.

“I-it was a ‘T’ model, just like the crashed ship, only newer. The one like you and the others all got on and took off in a hurry. I saw them!”

Vharri paused. “Others?”

The worker was shrinking away from the Vis. “Yeah, there were two Vechs, a Nacrian, and a Shyrian with the one like you.”

Instantly her anger went away, only to be replaced with astonishment. So not only had Saiyani broken Vis law by leaving Yievis without Elder consent, and pursued a vision without consent; she was now traveling with four aliens who likely already knew about the vision because Vis do not grasp how to lie!

Vharri dropped the money at the worker’s feet and walked back to her ship. She was going to find Saiyani, and she was going to demand how any Vis could be so incredibly rebellious.


*****


I stretched as I rose from my now usual sleeping spot. The clang of metal as Alb brought us to port at the Crowna Station had woken me from another dreamvision. Busy pondering the vision, I declined Alb’s invitation to get supplies. He, Sh’Kena, and Zev disembarked together.

In the silence that followed I found myself wandering over to the crew’s quarters. It was considerably larger than the last, with three bunkbeds situated against three of the walls. Two footlockers lay on either side of each bunkbed fitted with high-security locks. In the center of the room was an odd table with several chairs. It was odd because each of the chairs hovered over the floor with a metal bar connecting their bottoms to the leg of the table, which was bolted down to the floor.

Jace sat in one chair, staring down at a piece of paper with an odd expression. I went to sit across from him and found that the chairs swiveled around on their metal anchors.

“Well this is… different,” I commented on my chair as it swung me to face the table.

He looked startled that I was there, though he had surely heard my talons on the floor? Alb said I would never get lost on a ship with the way they clacked so loudly.

“Ah, Saiyani,” Jace’s voice sounded strained. “Where are the others?”

“Getting supplies,” I answered. “They only just left if you want to join them.”

He forced a smile. “No, thanks. I’m a bit tired from all the excitement recently….”

We sat in silence for quite a while. Something seemed to be troubling him, but to my knowledge nothing had gone wrong since we left Shyria. Four days of space travel had allowed all of us time to relax since the Vasnova had been detained. After getting supplies here there would be another four or five days until we reached the trio of star systems that housed the Vech, Nacrian, and Skandian homeworlds.

“Saiyani,” Jace started to say. “Do you… think it’s worth it?”

I tilted my head at him, “Is what worth it?”

“Saving this galaxy,” He sighed. “It’s a lot to deal with, what with all the wars, politics, disease. Maybe it’s time for it to just… end.”

I frowned, “I do not believe that. Why do you?”

“I- I don’t know,” He sighed again, frustrated. “Like I said, I’m tired. Besides, didn’t you say when we met that your people would punish you for this? Is trying to save this messed up galaxy worth whatever that punishment is?”

“Yes,” I answered without thinking. When he raised his eyebrows at me, I tried to elaborate. “I see nothing but death in my visions. For my entire life. And I will continue to see death when I sleep, and now while I am awake. My people are supposed to live in a way where we do not affect the outcomes of our visions. Growing up in my training, I had to watch strangers across the galaxy die without doing anything to help. Some were agonizing murders, others peaceful deaths while sleeping.

“My point is: seeing so much death makes one realize how important life is. All life. Because of this when I saw an entire galaxy of life being destroyed, and saw a way to prevent that, I decided it was worth it.”

Jace’s troubled expression turned thoughtful. “I wish I could see things the way you do. Between that and my military training, maybe I could end this war and finally go home.”

“Why do you want to go home?”

He grinned wryly and slid a piece of paper across the table to me. It was a colorful picture of two female Vechs. Compared to Jace they looked young.

“Those’re my sisters,” Jace’s voice sounded much softer as he spoke of them. “The shorter blonde one is Maron, and the dark-haired one is Gwinn. They live back on Vecharivs, our homeworld.”

I handed the picture back, “You want to return to them?”

“Of course,” He seemed surprised that I would ask. “They’re my family. Our parents died just before I finished my military training. Gwinn’s a genius engineer, so she started work making cybernetic limbs and implants. Our combined salaries make enough money for the two of them to live comfortably.”

“You sound upset about that,” I observed. His face had gone troubled again.

He sighed, “I should be with them. Not reporting back means the navy will assume I’m dead with the rest of my crew. Or at least MIA. It’s probably worrying them both sick not knowing if I’m okay. Little Maron is… she’s sensitive since our parents passed.”

I was silent for a while, thinking. Vis had no family connections. Even when mating we did not form relationships or bonds. Everything a Vis does is for the survival of the whole species. Besides our training focuses on suppressing emotions. Family bonds would tempt us to choose a single Vis’ welfare over all others. That level of emotion could cause one to lose all control of their powers.

Jace and I suddenly looked up as the door opened and Sh’Kena walked in. She was frowning and her furry ears were bent back.

“Are you and the others done resupplying already?” I tilted my head at her.

“I came back first,” She grumbled. “My father sent me along because I do not care for outsiders. I thought going to resupply would help, but I had to come back or end up battling all of them.”

Jace snorted, but I tilted my head again. “Do you want to go back to your father?”

Her eyes turned sad, like Jace’s had, “Yes. He is the only family I have left. I want to spend what time left he has in this galaxy by his side.”

My eyes lowered as I frowned. If they both missed their families, why not return to them? None of my companions had to follow me towards my vision. There was nothing stopping them from returning. So why were they here putting my vision above the welfare of their families?

Sh’Kena noticed my silence and spoke up, “What of your family, Saiyani?”

My head rose at the question. “Vis do not have family bonds. We are taught that such strong emotions make it impossible to control our powers. It is also viewed as putting one or two lives above those of the entire species. That is not in our nature.”

While Sh’Kena nodded as if she understood, Jace jumped to his feet with a shout.

“You have no idea who your family is? You’ve never met your mother or father, and you don’t care?!” He was breathless with anger. It was obvious the thought upset him, but I had no idea why. It was not like I had no feelings about being without a family. I simply could not tell what they were. Emotions were as foreign to me as Jace’s half-cybernetic face.

Without answering him, I stood and left the crew’s quarters. To say there was some emotional reason for my abrupt exit would not be false. The problem was that I did not know what emotions I might be feeling. Whatever they were, they were not natural; they could not be. If they were how could I have lived one hundred and nineteen years without experiencing them yet? Perhaps there was something about galactic travel that brought them out.

My head ached with so many unanswered questions. It was hard enough attempting to follow my vision without knowing what I was doing. There was no way of preparing for what the cause of that black cloud might be; just as there was no way of explaining the emotions I had begun to feel. At the very least I wanted another vision that elaborated more on the first. Any clue that might lead me in the right direction would ease some of my worries.

Back in the storage room I curled up in my corner to sleep. I was not tired, but sleep was the only thing I could think of to put my mind at rest. Perhaps I would speak with my companions about my vision later.





© 2017 Natasha Reams



My Review

Would you like to review this Chapter?
Login | Register




Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


Stats

33 Views
Added on July 20, 2017
Last Updated on July 20, 2017


Author

Natasha Reams
Natasha Reams

Anderson, AK



About
Hi, thanks for reading my stuff in advance. I LOVE with wolves, and supernatural romances are my favorite books. I have two dogs (one of which is named Samwise Gamgee so I'm pretty nerdy) and I used t.. more..

Writing
One One

A Chapter by Natasha Reams


Two Two

A Chapter by Natasha Reams


Three Three

A Chapter by Natasha Reams