Friday, January 6, 2012

No Earth to Call Home

The Attack

Have you ever felt true loss? Well, I have, when the Earth fell to an alien race. I was attending a birthday party at my friend’s home which turned into an informal class reunion. My friend Bruce invited many of my old classmates over for his son’s birthday party. And well, the party has just sprung into a class reunion. I met Bruce in the fourth grade when I was transferred to the South Christian Academy by my parents. Even though I didn’t know him he welcomed me into his circle of friends. The circle friends became friends all the way through high school. We never really separated from another until after high school. I figured the reason we stayed together so long because we attended such a small school. This left us with a pretty limited friend base. Nevertheless, being a small school did have one drawback and that was funding. Funding forced the school to close a few years ago, leaving many of its graduating class without a reunion. When Bruce invited our former classmates to his house for the party, it became the reunion we were denied. I saw people I hadn’t seen in forever. The first was Kim who left our little town to become a Marine. The second was Sara, who married move to the big city. These people were my friends back in high school, and today we were total stHumbles. However, now we were together again, and could remedy this problem. My brother and his kids also attended the party because his son was in the same class at school as Bruce’s. As mingled with my former classmates a most terrible thing happened. This terrible thing would change the very fabric of our lives.

Tom was running late for the birthday party. As he drove to get to Bruce’s house he turned on news radio. He always listened to news radio as a distraction and today was no different. Usually the story was about someone breaking into a home or the president’s new plan. However, today’s story would be quite different. As he got closer to Bruce’s house, he heard a strange news story. The closer he listened to story the more he didn’t believe it. On the station they were saying the world was under attack. An alien force was attacking Washington. As Tom listened he thought this cannot be possible, no way was aliens real. Nevertheless, as he listens, he became more engrossed in the story. To the point he finally believed it. When he finally accepted the truth of the story he decided he needed to warn people. So he sped his truck to the point of crashing into other cars to reach Bruce’s house in time. As he came into the driveway being in such a rush, he forced a lot of people to jump out of the way. Then his truck slammed into Bruce’s car. Bruce, Bill and Julian were the first ones to his door. They were saying are you okay Tom. He finally let out a word he said, “Attack.”
Bill said, “What?”
“Attack, we are under attack.”
Bruce said, “no way man.”
“Listen to the radio.”
Bruce reached in and turned up the volume listening to the announcer say, “a huge force of unknown origins has come out of the sky and started bombarding our large cities. They have decimated most of our large cities and have issued only one message. The message was “Surrender or Die. It is unknown now at this time if the message will be answered. The President is feared dead at this time. No one has seen the Vice President since the bombardment has happened. Our only hope relies on our military at this time.”

The announcer kept talking, but the soldier in me went for Bruce’s weapons. However, I was not the only one to go for the weapons. I guess Bruce stopped listening way before me because when I got to his living room he had already beaten me to them. So did about fifteen other guys. When I finally gotten to the front of the group, I saw Bruce was preparing for war. Bruce took on the role he always played and began barking out orders. He said, “Kim you take the front. Julian you take the back. Michael you take the side. We need to get everyone inside, Bill that’s your job.

I took the orders like a good little soldier and went about gathering up people. Instead of following my orders a lot of people jump in their vehicles heading for home. Only a small group joined me heading for the house. One of them was Sara’s husband. He took his son inside the home. As I went to get more people I saw Sara and couple others were gathering up things. I went to them and said, “You need to get in the house.”
Sara said, “We will after we get these things.”
“No, now.”
She finally listened to me after a little more arguing, and as we turned to go in the house, it exploded, knocking me to the ground.

As I stirred from the explosion I saw what was left of Kim sitting by the house. People were running around like chickens with their head's cut off. I tried to get up, but the explosion had knocked me out pretty hard. I was hit pretty hard which was making it quite difficult to get up. However, I finally gathered the strength to push myself up. When I got up I saw why people were running. A group of very tough looking alien soldiers were shooting people. They looked sort of like the mythical yeti. Many tried to fight back, but this proved useless. However, this did not stop me from doing my duty. I took off running and hit the closest one to me. I was able to knock him to the ground. As I got up I grabbed his rifle shooting another one. As I turned to fire again four blasts hit me from each side, and I was no more.

The Trip

As I was sleeping in an unknown place, a sound awoke me. In a distance, I kept hearing “Bill wake up, you got to get up.”
As I reached conciseness, I saw before me a beautiful reddish pink alien. Well, she must be alien to be so pink. She said, “Hi, I’m glad you are finally awake.”
“I said who are you?”
“The name is Xantra.”
“Xantra, that must be alien right?”
“Yes, I’m what you call alien.”
“Well it’s a beautiful name you have. Who are you again?”
“Thanks, I am Xantra of Lyria. I am a part of the Lyrian resistance.”
“Where is Lyria?”
“To answer your question, we are about four days away in hyperspace. Three days off from the moon we are going to mine.”
“You don’t know where you are, do you?”
“Not really the last thing I remember was being shot four times.” “You’re aboard a Hurrean slave ship.”
“A what?”
“A slave ship headed for the moon of Astra. You were captured by the Hurrean Conglomerate; a group of slavers and merchants spreading death and destruction throughout the galaxy.
“How do you know this?”
“Because it is what they did to my people. We have been fighting them for the last three years.”
“Has it worked for the Lyrians?”
“Not yet, but we hope one day.”
“Well it’s been fun talking to you, but my question now. What are we going to do about this situation?”
“We are going to escape.”
“Escape, is there a way of the ship?”
“Yes and no. Yes, there is a way off the ship and no I can’t help you escape. You see I’m not really in the room with you at this moment.”
“What? I can see you clear as a day."
“It’s an impression of me I’m projecting in your mind. I didn’t think it would work with your species. However, I had to try. So I searched all over the ship, and you were the only one I could contact.”
“Makes me special huh?”
“You wouldn’t believe it.”
“Ok, well if you're not in my cell. How am I supposed to escape?
“Well in about ten minutes your time a guard will come to check your cell. He will have a device with him used to knock out prisoners. It can also revive prisoners. When he gets there grab him, wake the rest of your prisoners. Once you have enough people come get me and my crew can help you escape the ship.”
“Well sounds good, but one problem, I’m not awake for real.”
“I can fix that, but it's going to hurt.”
“Wait a minute hurt how?”
“Just a sharp pain in the head.”
“Well, ok, wait before you do it. Where are you?”
“I’m in the cell down the hall from you.”
“Ok, go ahead.”

The Awakening

I awoke with the greatest headache I have ever had in my life. It was one of those which make you want to put a drill to your head just to get to the pain. I laid there on the floor surrounded by my friends. There were Matt, Rex, Bruce, Julian, Tom, Sara and Ryan. It looked like only a few people survived the reunion, or they were in another cell. All of them were sound asleep. As I looked around for something to take out the guard I felt a pain in my back. I reached back finding a sliver of glass about three inches probably a window. It must have hit me when the house blew. The aliens never took it out. I reached around trying to get it out just as I yanked out the piece of glass, I heard footsteps. I tore a piece of my shirt to wrap the glass with to minimize the cutting on my hands. Because I knew I was going to hit this guy hard and the last thing I needed to do was cut myself bad. As I looked around for something else to fight with I heard the guard coming to our door. So I hid myself the best I could against the wall. As he entered the cell, I grabbed him from behind slitting his throat pretty quick. However, I did not realize he had company. His company was another guard who grabbed his weapon firing through the door. He missed me completely, but poor Tom was not so lucky. The blast went right through his head. I grabbed the gun from the guard I just killed firing back. We did this for a few more times before I got him. I grabbed the device and started to wake each person up fast as I could because the firefight alerted more guards to us. The first one I got to was Rex, and I shook him awake. I handed him the other guard's gun saying, “get to the door.”
He looked down at the gun at first, but when he saw the alien, he understood real quickly. He let off some shots to scare the other guards as I woke the rest. The fire fight was really intense, which woke them quickly. By the time I finally got everyone understanding what was going on, the guards were making a run for the door. I hit the first with a blast to the head and the rest kept on coming. Rex was hit in the shoulder, and he tossed Julian his weapon. As the rest of the guards died, my friends grabbed for their weapons. I don’t think any of us didn’t get some kind of burn from the blasters. After another attack by the guards, we were able to suppress them. Finally allowing us to leave the cell. I yelled to my friends “grab those computers like device and let's get all of these open.”

We each took a cell waking those in it; I took Xantra’s cell. When my friends saw her, they reached for their weapons but, I stop them saying, “she’s our ticket out of here.”
She was restrained with some kind of device. I asked her “how do I get it off.”
She replied the device just place it on each restraint.”
I placed the device on each restraint and yanked them off. I did the same with each member of her crew. After this I turned to her saying, “where do we need to go?”
She replied in English “we need to get to the engine room and shut down the shields. Afterwards, my crew can fly us from the hangar.”
By this time most was awake asking where they were. My friends not really knowing, told them they didn‘t know. So confusion abounded, but this did not stop us from yelling to all the prisoners “this way, so we can escape.”
Pretty, much everybody followed me to the engine room. Some didn’t follow me, and I didn’t care because I wanted to escape. As I got closer to the engine room, I spoke to Xantra saying, “We need to get a bit more organized.”
She said okay, but after the engine room because they can put the shields up to stop us. We don’t want that to happen if we want to escape.”
I agreed with her, and we kept on running. As we got to the engine room I took a peek through the door. I counted only a couple of guards where inside the room. The ship must not have needed a lot of personnel because if I had a prison break on my ship, I would have sent most of my men to guard the engine room. I looked back telling those who carried guns to follow my orders. I told Matt to take up position behind the console, and I gave the others similar positions. I let off some covering fire while Matt went in first, followed by a whole lot of others. We must have made a lot of noise when we came to the room, because when I previously looked in I saw only a few guys. However, there must have been over thirty in their hiding and when we enter they started to let of a hail storm. We lost a few souls trying to breach that room. However, we were finally able to suppress the guards. After suppressing the room I entered with Xantra, heading to console. She took down the engines and force fields around the transports in the docking bay. Afterwards she said, “Ok, now we can go.”

When I walked out to the hall this time I found most of the humans on this ship had joined us in the hallway. I yelled over the rumbling of the group saying, “Be quiet.”
A hush fell over the group, and I said, “I know you don’t know me, but you have followed me thus far. So I ask you to follow me off this ship. These pink aliens, pointing to the Lyrians, were prisoners like you. They hate our captures as much as you and want to escape. They have agreed to help us escape from this ship, but we must first fight our way to the hangar. So I stand before you asking for volunteers to lead the way.”
About fifty people step forward including my friends. “Oh, by the way, you want to get on a transport because this ship is going to explode.”
A cry rang out through the group, and many more volunteered, but I needed no more volunteers. I said to my volunteers “we need to take the hangar and give these people covering fire to the transports.”
They must have agreed with my strategy because they followed me. As we got closer to the hangar, you could tell many were scared. However, many of these men must have been soldiers because they acted like they knew their job.

We got to the hangar in under a minute. I looked through the door seeing the positions I knew we needed to take. There were four good positions. However I had enough men for five. So I split us in five groups with the fifth group to cover our rears. I then sent the remaining groups through those huge doors. The first group went and only two made it to cover. The next group was luckier half of them made it through. Finally, when I sent the third group, all of them made it. I was in the fourth group and would take the forward most position which was the most dangerous. Once my group made it to the front the rifle fire was tremendous. However, the rest of the groups kept them pretty much suppressed, and we lost only one person. When we made it I sent the word, time to move out. Each group of prisoners entered the hangar running for the transports. We suppressed the Hurreans best we could, but some still got hit. It took only a few minutes to get them all aboard heading for the exit. As the last of the transports took off, we could hear the alarms getting louder. I yelled for each group to head to the last shuttle while my group kept up suppressing fire. As the final group made it to the transport, my group took off for it. I almost made it to the ship without being hit, but I was hit in the side just short of the ramp. I fell down and would have been a goner if my friend Rex had not grabbed me dragging me in the transport. He took one to the stomach for his trouble.

Xantra was yelling over the intercom that she needed help up front to fly. I yelled anyone with flight experience to join her up front. One guy raised his hand saying his name is “Jon, and he flew helicopters.”
I said, “Get up front and help her.”
Jon took off running to the cockpit to join her. As I laid there bleeding from my side, Matt reached down to take care of my wounds. I said "no take care of Rex’s wound, I’m fine."
Matt said, “No you’re not fine. I need to take care of you.”
A man said, “I’ll do it you take care of the other guy. I’m Doug, by the way. I was a medic in the Air Force.”
“Thanks Doug,” I said as he pushed on my burn, I screamed a little. He said “Well, it looks ok, for now but will need to clean this up.”
As he was saying this Xantra was shaking the ship in all different directions. She seemed to be doing a good job, but as I thought this, we were hit with something. However, this did not stop her from going into hyperspace because within seconds of being hit everything flashed.

The Escape

When Jon reached the cockpit, the alien told him to sit down in the copilot’s seat. She seemed to be having a hard time taking control of the ship. When he sat down, she said, “Grab the handles and pull back.”
He grabbed the controls pulling them back, forcing the ship off the ground. As they left the hangar, many of the alien soldiers left alive were firing at them. However, this did not stop them from leaving. Soon after leaving the docking bay, they ran into a little more trouble. The ship they just left was firing lasers at them. The alien must have been a good pilot because she swerved in and out of the lasers. The ship was hardly hit by any laser. She said, “The reason I called you up, here is I got to place us in hyper drive. This requires two people to do. See those switches over on your right side. They are the ignition switches for the hyper drive. When I say go, we will both push at the same time.”
Just as they were about to push the switches the huge ship exploded. A piece hit the back of their ship, but this did not stop her from yelling “now.”
The ship entered hyperspace forcing the stars to flash by. The alien said, “The names Xantra, by the way.”
He said, “Jon.”
“Well I am glad we survived it”
“Me to”
All of a sudden, the ship started to jerk. She said, “the hyper drive is failing I need to get back to the engine room. Stay here and watch these controls. I will intercom you if I need anything. Press the blue button to intercom me back.”
He said, “Ok, got it.”

As Doug was finishing up patching my wounds Xantra came back saying, “were in hyperspace, but we were hit before we entered. The controls are a little wonkee and I need to fix the engines.”
I said, “ok, what do you need to fix the engines?"
She said, “a little help.”
I said, “Anyone here can fix engines?”
Two men raised their hands, and I said, “Names?”
The first one said, “Ralph Morris” and the other said “Jack Ronson.” I said, “Follow her and she will get you started fixing the ship.”
As they were leaving another man who I could tell was an officer popped up saying “hold on a minute where are we going.”
I said, “Your name?”
He said, “Captain Arthur Lewis, US Army Logistics.”
I said, “We are going to that alien’s world. She has invited us to stay there for now because Earth is under alien control. Her people have been fighting the race which took Earth. They will help us get our revenge for Earth.”
“How do we know we can trust them?” He replied.
“Well I don’t know, but they did help us escape.”
“So that could have been a ploy to get us to their world.”
“I don’t know, but this is not the time for arguing. Right now we need to fix this ship in order to survive. So I will address your concerns after we look at the wounded.”
He said, “Roger that” in a snide way. He didn’t press the issue any further. Not from what I said, but rather because the others were looking at him weird. Matt continued to work on Rex, but this was to no avail. Matt keeps saying, “I can’t stabilize Rex.” I went over sitting next to Rex holding his hand, hoping my energy would force him to survive, knowing full well it would not. He opened his eyes and asked, “We make it”
I said, “yes, yes we did.”
He said, “Good at least part of my gamble paid off, and yawl will survive.”
I laughed at this because he always was a good gambler and hardly lost. He said, “When you beat those bastards find my father and tell him I love him.”
I said, “I will and I’m proud of you” and he died. I kept mumbling I was proud of him as I struggled to my feet. I left the room so no one could see me cry but, Sara followed me out wanting to comfort me. As I went into the room which must have been the galley, she followed me in. When she got to my side, I was crying. I said “it’s all my faults their deaths are my fault. Your husband’s death is my fault.”
This made her tear up some, but she hugged me. She then said, “No, both died because of those aliens, not because of you. So don’t take this pain on yourself.”
I said, “But I failed them.”
She said, “You didn’t fail them and God has a plan for us now.”
I said, “What plan?”
She said, “Well we now have a ship, we can use to take this war to them.” As she was saying this Xantra came by the room. She said, “I temporarily fix the hyper drive, but we need to set down. My new world is over five days away, which is too far away. However, I know a place not far from here where we can set down.”
I said, “Ok, whatever you think is right.”
She turned heading towards the cockpit. I look back at Sara and left the room.

Xantra made it back to the cockpit and sat down in her seat. Jon asked “how is the engine?”
She replied “it needs some work. So we got to set down. Bill has given me the go-ahead to land at a place I know. So I am going to plot a course to it.”
As she was plotting the course, he asked her. “Where are we going?”
“To an old Lyrian base I once went to. It abandoned years earlier during our war with the Hurreans. It doesn‘t have much there, but hopefully some parts to fix the ship was left behind.”
“Cool a base; well at least we’ll have some ground beneath us. All of this space flying has got me nervous.”
“There I have plotted the course. What were you saying?”
“Never mind.”
“It is going to take us twelve hours to get there.”
“How do you know what an hour is?”
“When I read Bill’s mind, I learned his terminology.”
“You can read minds?”
“No just Bill’s mind.”
“Good I didn’t know how to respond to that.”
“Let’s make an announcement then about the time.”
She reached up for the intercom.

After speaking to Xantra, I headed back to the corridor. I found everyone was now in the corridor. I said, “We will be landing shortly on an unknown planet. So we must be prepared for anything. I’m placing myself as the commander of this group for now. Once we establish were safe we can discuss who will be the leader."
Captain Lewis spoke up saying, “I don’t think so. Most of these men here are military and since I’m the highest rank, I’m their commander.”
I look at him saying, “You have followed me so far and have I led you astray. No, so all I ask is for you to follow me a little longer. If that doesn’t settle you, then when I rescued you from your cell you were nothing. You were just wasting away there to become a slave, but I risked my life to free you so give me a chance. If you don’t like it, we will settle it later.”
He said, “I don’t see it that way and want to settle it now.”
He went for his weapon, and Bruce stuck his to his head saying, “he is in command for now, got it.”
Captain Lewis almost pissed his pants. He was just a paper pusher, and we showed him. He mumbled “ok” and sat down.
I said, “Ok now that’s settled,”
As I was starting to speak Xantra came over the intercom “we will be landing in about twelve hours. So sit back and enjoy the ride.”
I said, “Well we are going to be here for a bit so let's settle in people. Julian check the galley to see if there is any food in it. Bruce go get Xantra and Jon from the cockpit. I think it‘s time we all got to know one another.”
As Bruce left Captain Lewis tried to get up. I pointed my gun in his direction saying, “Captain sit down and enjoy your life for a bit.”

The Meal

By the time Xantra and Jon got to the corridor Julian taken it upon himself to start passing out what I guess to be military rations. He handed me a ration pack and I ripped of the top. I ate it greedily because I was quite hungry. I then asked Julian if he found anything to drink. He said “well in the kitchen they have a water tap. You want me to get some?”
I said “don’t move I’ll get it.”
I left the room and headed to the galley I found a jug and six glasses in the cabinets. I pulled them out and took a sip of water. The water was quite good and must have been from Earth. I filled the jug from the tap then walk back to the area. I handed out the six glasses and said “we’ll just have to share the glasses.”
I poured some water in each and after emptying the jug I went back for some more. Returning from filling the jug, I filled the glasses again and said “well now were full let’s get to know one another. I’ll go first.
My name is William Tucker I served in the Army for two years working in intelligence. I was honorable discharged after I injured my knee. As you can all tell I walk with a limb. After serving in the military I went back to school and got degrees in political science and intelligence. After finishing school I started to work for the State Department as an analyst in Washington D.C. However, I was not in D.C. when the attacks began because I was on vacation. Lucky thing too because it’s probably leveled to the ground. I was at my friend Bruce’s house for his kid’s birthday party when they attacked. Many of my friends and family were lost when they blew up his home. The first thing I remember after fighting them was waking up in the cell. I killed the guard and broke the rest of you out. If you didn’t already know the ship we were on was a Hurrean Slave Ship. We were all bound for mining planet. My thoughts were I was no better dead as a slave and I might as well choose my death. As you can tell some of those with us are my friends who I treat as family. one day I hope to treat you as such.”
The second to speak was Xantra. “My name is Xantra Demeter and I’m a Lyrian. I’ve already told Bill I’m in the Lyrian Resistance, but I failed to mention I’m a smuggler. However, I do not do it for profit. I do it because I need to fund an army. My father was a great general in charge of Lyrian forces and my brother followed him into service. However, over three years ago the Hurreans came to our homeworld and conquered it. My brother, my mother and me plus a group of two thousand Lyrians escaped from the planet in a few ships. We landed on a planet we now call New Lyria. It is a remote planet off the beaten hyperspace routes. My brother was the highest ranking person to escape so he has taken command of our civilization. Those Lyrians which flew off with the rest of the prisoners were my crew and will taking the rest of your people to New Lyria. My crew and i was shot down over Earth when we tried to warn your people of an attack. They fired first and took us down, but I have no ill will towards you. As Bill already said we were on a Hurrean Slave Ship. However, he was unable to tell you what Hurreans are. They are a clan motivated society which means they fight in many groups only coming together for a prize. However, we have not been able to take advantage of this yet. I hope you will all look on me as a friend.”
Captain Lewis spoke next saying “my name is Captain Arthur Lewis and I’m from Syracuse, New York. After graduating from Yale I joined the army. Been working in Army Logistics for the last two years at Fort Polk. When the base was attacked I was off base at my house. I rushed back to defend it, but was attack and captured. I hope we plan on getting revenge for our friends because I can’t stand that we lost.”
The next to speak was Julian who said “my name is Julian Russell. I have lived in Lumberton, Texas for most of my life except when I was a Marine. While in the Marines I worked as a secretary and after discharge I sought a degree. I received the degree and was about to start my job when the invasion happen. My family was at Bruce’s house when the attack happen I don‘t know if they‘re alive or dead.”
Warrant Officer Mary Harper went next saying. “I’m Mary Harper and I’ve from Wisconsin. I was attached to the airbase at Fort Polk as a technical advisor when the attack happened. I was captured in the first wave and I never got to see if my husband survived as well. After the capture I was questioned and knocked out. That is the last thing I remember.”
Sergeant Greg Wainwright spoke after Mary saying “hi my name is Greg Wainwright. I served for five years as a supply technician in the army. I just received orders to Fort Polk and was arriving when the invasion happen. I have no wife or relatives to speak of and now I have no country.”
Matt went next saying “well my name is Matt Casper and I’m a medical assistant. After being discharged from the army I worked job to job until I took the training. When the attack happen I was at Bruce’s house. My mom was in Beaumont so I don’t know if she survived.”
After Matt spoke Ryan stood up and said “name is Ryan Bell. I have a master in computer science and have worked for some top computer companies. I went to school with Bill and was invited to Bruce’s house. I was lucking enough to be at home for my mother’s funeral when the attack happen. I was actually captured rather quickly because I was knocked out by the first bombardment.”
Specialist Ronson spoke next saying “my name is Jack Ronson and I’m a mechanic in the marines. I was home on leave from Camp Pendleton and was captured just outside of my hometown of Lake Charles. Some of my friends went in the other ships.”
Airmen Ralph Morris spoke next saying “hi the name is Ralph Morris. I’m from Michigan and I am a weather geek. I was attached to Fort Polk Aviation Brigade.”
As Morris was finishing Airmen Reese spoke saying “my name is Doug and I from Philadelphia. I was at Fort Polk taking a refresher medic course. I just finished when the attack came and was awaiting orders to be shipped to an Air Force base. After being knocked out I woke up in the slave ship.”
Just as Doug finished Staff Sergeant Mason spoke up. He said “my name is Staff Sergeant Eric Mason and I’m a grunt. I’m originally from Newport. When the attack came I was leading my squad to victory. However, I lost my entire squad and ended up here.” He huffed and sat down.
Private Lauren Aarons spoke next “my name is Private Lauren Aarons. I’m from Kansas City. I’m apart of the military police at Fort Polk. I lost my partner and friends all in one day at that base.”
Sara spoke next saying “my name is Sara Williams and I’ve a pastor of a youth church. I’m from Lumberton, Texas and have no military experience, but I‘m willing to learn. Me and my family were at Bruce‘s home. However, I lost each one of them in the explosion. All I have left is Bill and my friends.”
Corporal Jessica Hauser went next saying “I like to be called either Jessica or Corporal Hauser. I am from the great state of California and been stationed as a clerk at division headquarters in Fort Polk. I was captured when the building I was in was infiltrated by aliens.”
After Jessica spoke Lieutenant Jon Lloyd said “name is Lieutenant Jon Lloyd. I’m from Charleston. I have been a helicopter pilot in the army for the last two years. My helo was shot down just outside of Alexandria and I was subsequently shipped to the ship.
Bryan Larsen spoke next saying “I’m Private Bryan Larsen. I have no special qualities about me. I’m an infantry soldier and that’s it. After getting in trouble with the law in Boston I was forced to sign up. So Fort Polk was my first tour of duty. My skills as a soldier did not prepare me for an alien attack so I was captured quite easily.”
Bruce spoke next and said “well my name is Bruce Jasper and every one of these guys was at my house. We were celebrating my son’s birthday. However, I do not know if he or my wife is alive. I was outside my house when it exploded and woke up on the ship.”
Sergeant Bob Humble spoke next saying “Hi, I’m Sergeant Bob Humble from the Lake Charles Police Department. I was captured outside Lake Charles during a routine traffic stop. I always complained about that shift, but it saved my life.”
Private Whitney Kasey spoke next saying “my name is Private Whitney Kasey. I’m from Salt Lake City and joined the military to leave that state. I’m a supply clerk for my battalion and I was captured with partner Andy.”
Private Andy Weeks spoke next saying “I’m from Eagle Pass. I joined the military after high school. I never been in combat in my life, but after being captured I hope I do well.”
Two Step Master spoke next saying “my name is Two Step Master. Ain’t no military soldier, but I have been soldiering the streets all my life. I’m from New Orleans and was captured when the aliens took down my gang. I hope we ah going to hit those bastards back.”
Phillip Lawrence spoke saying “my name is Phillip Lawrence I’m a school teacher at Fort Polk. I took the job three years ago and moved from my hometown Oklahoma City. I tried to protect the kids, but was knocked out for my troubles.”
The last to speak was Specialist Nikki Mazola saying my name is Nikki. I was a water purification specialist at Fort Polk. After surviving the first attack I raced off to the woods. However, this did not prevent me from being captured.”
Once everyone finished with their stories I spoke up saying “since we are finished getting to know each other. I like to talk about our situation here. We are stuck on this ship for the next twelve hours. We are tired and we just filled our hunger problem. So here is what I suggest. We all take a small nap to pass the hours. Me, Jon, Xantra and Julian will stay awake to make sure the ship stays in the air. Everyone else is order to get some rest. Find anyplace you can sleep.”
As I said this Bruce walked over saying “Bill you’ve been shot and well you need rest. How about I take over for six hours while you sleep?”
Matt walked up saying “I agree with him Bill”
I said “ok, I’ll sleep, but I need you to search the cargo bays with Xantra for the parts she needs to fix the ship. It would also be good to know what we got in the way of supplies.”
Bruce said “me and Julian will do that then.”
“Ok, then I’m going to sleep then.”
I walked over to Xantra telling her Bruce and Julian would be joining her. After which I left the room and went to the galley shutting the door. I passed out pretty quick.

I awoke to Julian banging on the door. He entered saying “we didn’t find the parts she needs and well were about to come out of hyperspace.”
“Why didn’t you wake me after six hours?”
“Matt said we shouldn’t so you could heal better.”
“Alright, but don’t do it again. Wake everyone up so we can prepare for the landing.”
“Ok Bill.”
I walked back into the corridor saying “okay were about to land. We don’t know what’s down there so when we land don’t anyone get off this ship before I say.

The Planet

Andy sat there staring at the walls as they closed in on him. He couldn’t wait to get off this ship. While everyone else slept the trip away he had been staring at the walls. He tried many different things to get his claustrophobia off his mind. He tried humming to himself as well as counting sheep, but nothing helped. Nothing helped until Bill announced the ship would be landing which made him quitehappy. However, he did not like the fact Bill told everyone not to get off the ship until he said. So Andy decided he would play along until the ship came to rest on the planet. He thought he could do this, it was only a little longer and he be free.

As I was speaking I noticed Andy fidgeting a little bit, but I thought nothing of it. I continued my speech by saying “ok, when we land we will be breaking up in groups to search the base. I want each of us prepared for resistance. However, I believe there will be none. Alas we still need to prepare. So the groups will be as followed. Julian will lead Bruce, Mary and Bob. Jon will lead Nikki, Eric, and Bryan. Captain Lewis will lead Greg, Doug and Lauren. Matt will lead Andy, Phillip, and Whitney. Xantra will lead Jack and Ralph. Leaving Jessica, Sara and Two Step for me. Is that clear?”
Everyone agreed in some fashion and I spoke to Julian asking him if he found any weapons. He said “yes we found a crate of rifles plus a few other goodies.”
“Good pass out the rifles to everyone.”
Julian pointed at Captain Lewis saying “What about him?”
I looked saying “Him to.”
Julian started passing out the rifles as he was about to pass one to me we heard a big explosion.

As Jon flew the ship with Xantra for those twelve hours he learned many things about her race. For instance she was only eight years old. Her race matured at a faster rate than humans. A Lyrian child would reach adulthood after six years. Even though they aged fast, they still lived almost as long as a human. Another interesting fact was about their telepathy power. They could communicate with each other, but it was rare for them to be able to communicate to other species. The fact Bill could understand them was quite rare. She told Jon “it didn’t mean Bill was smarter, but his brain chemistry was different.”
As Jon thought over the things Xantra had said she started their drop out of hyper space. Just as they dropped out an explosion happen. The ship started to spin and he grabbed for the wheel. Xantra screamed “don’t let go or will die.”
So Jon held on with all of his might. She kept pressing buttons and Bill came tumbling into the cockpit. She screamed at him “sit down and strap in.”
He listened pulling himself into the third seat in the cockpit. He finally strapped in as the ship stop spinning. Xantra had finally gotten the right button pushed and the stabilizers started to work. The ship entered the atmosphere just south of the base. This according to Xantra was about ten minutes away. Jon had not realized he been holding so tightly on the wheel. When he took his hands of the wheel he realized they were bleeding. Bill told him to go get them fixed by Matt. So he unbuckled and left the cockpit walking to the corridor.

As Jon left I plopped myself into his seat. Speaking to Xantra I said “we made it. I’m so glad we did, because I need some earth beneath my feet.”
She laughed saying “earth is so human. You might mean soil, but not earth.”
I thought about this for a second then said “your right, but you knew what I meant.”
She replied “I knew, just wanted to mess with you.”
“I know you did” I said.
As we spoke small talk the time must have passed us by because we were coming up on the base. We started to descend getting closer to the ground I saw the trees and landmarks were not so different from earth. A minute later we made our final descent to the base. She said “I’m going to set us next to the hangar, because I don’t know if the awning will open for us. The base hasn’t been used in a few years so there might not be any power.”
She sat the transport down perfectly next to the hangar. Our earlier troubles did not prevent this from happening. She said “I’ll need to look at the engine so I’ll need some help. From the sound of it I think it is ruined completely.”
I said “ok, Jack and Ralph are already ready to work with you.”
She replied “good, well I’ll get started on it” leaving the cockpit. I followed close behind her.

Walking into the corridor I saw everyone was a little bit scared, but this did not stop me from issuing orders. I said “ok now the building before us is an aircraft repair hangar. Behind it is the main building for the base. We will be doing searches of both buildings. Jon you will be leading Nikki, Eric and Bryan.”
He said “ok”.
I said “everyone else you know your groups. Julian team will patrol the outside. Jon and Captain Lewis will patrol the hangar. Matt and my team will patrol the main building. Divvy up the search areas and be careful. Ok, take the ramp down.”
Julian hit the button and it started to drop.

Andy listened to Bill’s spill about sticking with assignments, but he could not wait much longer. He eased himself towards the ramp. As he got closer to it he felt more right. Finally he was the first one who was going to get off. He ran down the ramp like his life depended on it followed by Phillip and Bryan. Just as they got about ten feet from the ship he felt nothing no more.

I was still on the ship when I heard the explosion. Xantra was in the engine room and came racing out. She was looking at her device saying “stop everyone from moving.”
We ran of the transport with her screaming “don’t move.”
Everyone listened to her not out of respect, but rather fear. She held up the device over the area saying “ok, all clear.”
Matt ran over to Phillip who lost his left leg in the explosion. Bryan was lying there with a piece of Andy sticking out of his back. Andy was all over, most of those outside the transport hadbeen peppered with his body when it exploded. Captain Lewis screamed at her about why she didn’t tell us there were mines. Xantra kept trying to explain, she did not know about the mines until now. However, he wouldn’t listen forcing Julian to tackle him when he charged Xantra. I screamed “enough get the wounded on the ship now.”
Matt tied off Phillip’s leg hoping to stop the bleeding. Bruce, Eric and Lauren help him pick up Phillip to bring him in the ship. Captain Lewis finally calmed down and helped us pick up Bryan to carry him in the ship. As Matt passed me he said “we really can’t do anything for them.”
Xantra was with me said “I know something” rushing ahead of them into the transport. As I got into the transport she had return with a med kit and I wonder where the kit was while Rex died. However, I put this out of my mind. After she set the kit down she said “with these devices you all have which we call portables you can scan areas of the bodies to locate wounds. Here is how they work.”
She pushed a couple buttons in front of Matt and Doug showing them. She scanned Bryan saying “his wounds look bad and he might do better if we used Meta.”
Matt asks “what is Meta?”
“Meta is in this round object here. It is a fast acting healing substance used in the battlefield quite expensive.”
She pulled out the bone in his back and squirted some Meta on it. The wound started to close pretty quickly, but Phillip screamed in pain so I didn’t notice. She said “this stuff here is very good, and it keeps the soldiers going back to the battlefield.” After squirting Bryan she scanned Phillip. She said “his wound looks bad, but” she then squirted some of the Meta on his leg. What happen next was quite miraculous. Skin started to form over the bloody stump. Before we knew it was completely healed. The medicine must have produced a relaxant affect because he eased down on the floor like he was in no pain. I said “wow that was miraculous”.
She said “nope just good science, but in very short supply. I used most of it on his leg. So after it is gone we are stuck with traditional medicine.”
After she finished I got up saying “I know we had some excitement and we lost someone. However, this doesn’t pull from our mission. We need to patrol this area. Xantra ready our portables so we can be prepared in case of other surprises. Everyone else get ready to go with your group.”
Matt walked over to me saying he needs to stay. So I told him it was ok and told Doug to stay as well. Since Matt was not going and most of his group was down I told Whitney his final member to join Jon. She agreed with this heading over to him. Xantra by this time finished fixing all of the portables for us. Now that we could detect things I told everyone to go to their assign duties. After everyone else left the transport except my team, Xantra spoke to me saying “the engine looks bad, but I’ll still need to get more into it.”
I said “ok, we’ll be searching inside. Come get us if you need anything.”
She said “very well and good luck.”

The Runaway

Muztagh Zuran had enough with his life working as a slave. He had been at this mining base for about three years now and was not going to take it anymore. He needed to escape because if he stayed here any longer he was going to die. He had always planned to breakout. Yet most of the other slaves warned him not to go. However, he would not listen to them. When he saw the weekly transport had arrived, he decided he would finally stowaway this time. All he needed to do was break the collar off his neck. He thought up many ways to do it, but his friend Xonidian created the best idea. Too bad he was sold to another slaver. However, before he was sold Xonidian told him the idea. If he placed the power source from a portable backwards on the circuitry it would short out. He stolen a portable from the guard two nights before and they have been searching everywhere for it, but he hidden it well. Now the transport was here he could escape. He snuck to his secret location where he hid the portable which was the watering hole. He reached in fishing it out, it smelled, but no one thought to look here. He washed it and his hands in the water. Pulling the cover off, he became quite excited, he was going to do this and it would work. He pulled the battery out, stuck it to his collar. Sure enough the circuitry shorted out letting the collar slip right off. He pulled it the rest of the way off continuing his plan. His plan was quite simple he could sneak aboard the transport in one of the mining barrels. No one usually checked them because the collars prevented slaves from leaving the base. As he left the watering hole and started to sneak his way past the guards. When all of a sudden he was grabbed from behind. He was quite scared until he saw it was Gaetan. Gaetan was one of those people who you would not say they were stupid to them, but they were. He must have followed him out of the watering hole Muztagh thought. Gaetan spoke to him saying “I know what you are doing, I am going to.”
At this time Muztagh noticed Gaetan collar was also off. He could keep going, but if Gaetan raised an alarm he be finished. He had only two choices make room in the barrel for him or kill him. He decided two escaping was better than one. He spoke saying “all right, but follow my lead.”
Gaetan replied “Ok Muztagh, but no funny business.”
After the short reply they started their escape again. Just as they made it to the shed a guard was walking by and spotted them. Before he could raise an alarm Gaetan grabbed his rifle and broke his neck. Muztagh never knew Gaetan had it in him to do that, but he did. They dragged the guard to a perfect hiding place under the rusted equipment. The guards would not find the body for days. After hiding the body they slipped in the warehouse. No one usually came in here until it was time to load the ore. Muztagh opened the special barrel he been preparing for the escape. The both slipped in the barrel closing the lid just as the doors opened. They must have already emptied the first warehouse now they were onto this one. After long period of waiting, they finally moved the barrel. He could hear the guards talking as they rolled past them. A few moments later they stopped and the uncomfortable silence began.

The Search

Arthur stood before the building thinking he needed to find out who was on his side because that fat man didn’t need to run anything. Bill was not a leader and him following him was just stupid. He really needed to bid his time until he could get enough people to back him. Especially if that alien could get the ship fixed so they could leave the planet. His best hope was Lieutenant Lloyd would be able to fly them back to Earth after flying with the alien. As he thought this he reached for the door and opened it. Inside he found the place was a wide open room. Scattered across the floor were what look like broken pieces of a ship which stood half-finished in the middle of the room. He noticed there were offices to the left and right of the building. He told Lieutenant Lloyd to take his team and search the west side of the building. He order his team in a spread formation so more ground could be covered. He team only had two portables so he took one on the left while Sergeant Wainwright took the one on the right. They walked in spread formation until they came to the door. They then set up in MOUT positions. MOUT is Military Operation in Urban Terrain which Arthur learned at officer training school. Sergeant Wainwright kicked the door down and the rest enter the room. They spanned out saying clear from room to room. After searching room they found no life signs were visible. So Arthur and his team went about searching these offices for anything of use.

As I entered the main building I noticed the desk at the front looked like someone just left it. Things were scattered across the desk and many of them were on the ground. They must have just picked up and left when the Hurreans attacked their homeworld. After passing the desk I entered the first room. Inside the room was a huge computer console with many monitors. The monitors looked like it belonged to the security force which been stationed here. After leaving the room we went into the next room which looked like the armory. The door was shut so we could not get inside so we let it be. Afterwards we went from office to office until we found the commander’s office. The reason we knew it was a commander’s office was because in the center of the room was a huge desk. As well as being furnished with better decorations than the previous offices. After leaving the commander’s office we found the med bay and the dining area. I put these in the back of my mind for future use. As we left the dining room we headed for the second floor. I lead the way to show everyone I could do it. As I entered the second floor I took up a defensive position. I said “let’s search left first.”
Two Step lead the way with Sara and Jessica right behind him. I followed up as defensive cover. We entered the first room finding a bunk bed set. No one was in there. We left the room and went into the second room finding the same. It was like this for the next four rooms. So we headed to right side of the building finding the next four rooms were the same. However, the fifth room we found was a one bedroom which meant it must have been the security chief’s or commander’s room. After leaving the fifth room we look into the sixth room which appeared to be a communal bathroom. I pushed one of the buttons in the sink and water came spurting out in a brown color. I said “well we got water just not fresh. We’ll need to look at this later.”
Everyone agreed with me in some fashion and we left the bathroom heading for the third floor. When we got to the third floor we found only two rooms. One room appeared to be a radar station while the other appeared to be the commander’s quarters. The reason I thought they were commander’s quarters was because it was big, having its own bathroom. After finding no one in any of the rooms we all sat down on the bed in the commander’s quarters. I laid my back on it saying “wow all most as comfortable as my bed at home.”
Sara said “yeah it is quite comfortable.”
Two Step said “wish I had a bed like this back in New Orleans.”
Jessica just laid there soaking up its hominess.

Xantra just finished looking at the engines when everyone was getting back from their patrols. She spoke to Ralph saying “well this is quite hopeless. We are going to have to replace all of these parts in the engine.”
Ralph not really a ship mechanic just listened to her. As Bill walked into the engine room, Ralph said “hey what’s going on?”
Bill replied “found the barracks are livable and the hangar has a lot of parts strewed about.”
Xantra replied “that’s good because we need to replace the whole engine. It will take me at least a week to do this. So I’m glad we have a place to stay because we need to move everyone out of here.”
Bill replied “ok, I’ll take care of this, so don’t worry about it. However, I need you to get the power running for us. Also I need you to fix the filtration system on the water it is brown in there. So if you can do any of these, it be appreciated.”
“I know where they both are, after the meeting I will get on it.” said Xantra. Bill turned leaving the room with Ralph and Jack right behind him. Xantra turned looked at the engine then followed them as well.


The transport finally arrived at the location and Muztagh could not wait to get out of the barrel. He and Gaetan been stuck in here for over three hours and it was a tight fit. This would have been fine except Gaetan smelled very badly. As the transport came to a stop he heard the crew coming to the rear to unload. They waited for a short period of time before the crew finally made it to their barrel. They were picked up and totted across a walkway. Well Muztagh thought it was a walkway. Gaetan went to say something, but Muztagh hushed him as the barrel came to a stop. The Muztagh heard voices “Ok here is the barrel I swiped for you I hope this covers my debts.”
“You are sure the barrel if full of Eisen.”
“Yes, it came straight from Kushuh.”
“Good, get it aboard, but if I found you have cheated me. You know what happens?”
“Yes, Eimhin I do.”
“All right then get it aboard!”
The barrel moved forward and it came to a stop. Muztagh heard a door closing and figured they were in a cargo bay. However, he would wait a bit before they tried to escape. A good amount of time past still no sound was heard so he gave Gaetan the go ahead. They clicked the latch on the lid pushing it off. They stumbled out one by one until they lay on the floor. Muztagh’s entire body hurt as he laid there, but they needed to get up because they needed to get off this ship. They made their way out of the cargo hold down the hall to the right. When he saw it, the stars were flashing by. They were stuck on this ship. As he was thinking this he heard a noise. He and Gaetan tried to hide, but they were cornered. Somehow the ship’s crew pinned them in without their knowledge. The big burly one said “do not try any funny business or I will hurt you.”
Gaetan not wanting to go back to being a slave struck out. He almost made it when they all blasted him. When they were done most of his body was on the wall. The crew turned their weapons toward him. He said “take me please do not kill me.”
They rushed him, pinning him to the floor. As they dragged him through the ship he felt every bump along the way. Finally after hitting every hole he was in front of the captain. The captain said “what are you doing on my ship?”
Muztagh pushed through the fear saying. “Sir I just wanted to escape my hell I did not mean to end up on your ship.”
“Well you are here and from my account you have cost me a barrel of Eisen.”
“I know sir, but all I can do is apologize.”
“Apologize, this means nothing to me. I need repayment for my merchandise.”
“How can I repay you?”
“Well I do need another slave unless you know some way for me to make money?”
Muztagh thought about it for a while. Then thought about his last assignment where he had been stationed on Planet Wald at a forward observatory base. If he could convince them to go there they would find enough stuff to purchase his freedom. He said “I know a place where you can get many military computers and equipment. The best thing is the place is empty, because we left it in a hurry.”
“No place like that exist, if it did then someone has already found it.”
“No really it was remotely located off normal hyperspace routes. We used it to observe the Hurreans and when they launched an attack we left it. We wanted to warn our people, but our ship malfunction making us late to the party. We surrender pretty quickly and were sent to Kushuh. I am the first to leave there so it still must be abandon.”
“Well alright, give us the coordinates, but if you’re lying will kill you.”
“I know” Muztagh said and gave them the coordinates. They carried him off the bridge locking him in a small room.

The Move

As I walked into the room I could see all of the sad faces. Whitney was the saddest of them having lost her friend Andy. I spoke saying “I got good and bad news. The good news is the ship will be flyable again, the bad news is we don’t know how long we will need to fix it.”
As I said this the group started to stir and Captain Lewis spoke up saying “How is that good news at all?”
“Listen I know it is bad, but we have our lives and it can be repaired. So have some faith we will fix it. However, I’m not here to discuss the ship, but rather our situation. We have three things we need to do today. The first is we need to bury our dead. The second is we need to move our operations from the ship to the base. Finally we need to find spaces for everyone. Xantra will be working out the power issues we need fix to live at the base. Ralph, Ryan and Jack will join her. Everyone else will join me in burying our friends.”
Everyone got up getting ready to bury our friends. I asked some of the guys to help me carry Rex of the ship. The others went about picking up Andy of the ground. It was a bloody job, but someone had to do it. As we carried Rex down the ramp people stop in condolences. I knew some of them hated me, but them showing respect to the dead made me hate them a little less. We carried him over to a little tree inside the fence and I said “well didn’t think to ask for a shovel.”
Bruce said “be right back.”
He went over to the hangar grabbed a piece of metal bring it back. It was a crude shovel, but after taking turns we dug the hole. We set Rex in the hole, we then set Andy on top of him knowing it was wrong. Nevertheless, we hope they would find peace together. Sara spoke a few kind words over them and said a little prayer. Then it was to me to commemorate Rex. I started by saying “Rex and me met when I first transferred to South Christian. He was in a lower grade, but he befriended me all the same. We spent many of weekends as a child at each other homes. This lasted all the way through adulthood. No matter where we lived we still hung out at least once a year. His death is a blow to us because his gambles always paid off. So I hope he finds his lucky hand wherever he is.”
After speaking I was followed by Whitney saying some sad words about Andy. She said “Andy saved my life back on Earth. During the attack on the base I was almost killed by a pulse. However, he pulled me down saving my life.”
After speaking these words she cried to herself running off towards the transport. Without her we finished burying them little by little. After an hour of commemorating them and thinking some sad thoughts I exclaimed “ok, now that’s done I’ll finish my thoughts. I’m going to assign each person something to do. However, before I assign duties I’m going to assign the positions of our group. I’m in command with Captain Lewis as my second. Is that feasible for you Captain?”
He spoke saying “yes Bill it is.”
“Good, the next thing is security. Julian will be security chief with Jessica as his second. You need to make up a four person list for every four hours to do guard duty tonight. Two in the base and two out here in the transport.”
Julian spoke saying “thanks Bill.”
“The next thing will be medical bay duties. Matt be first with Doug as his second. The final thing will be supply officer which I say will be Greg and Whitney as his second. Now the positions are out of the way let’s talk duties now. We need to get all of the supplies off the ship into the base. I want our supply people to start inventory the items so I know where we stand. Sara will show you, Greg, the dining room and med bay so you can place those supplies there. As for assigning quarters I will be doing that while the rest of you get the supplies. Captain join me in this discussion.”
He said “ok” following me towards the transport. Everyone else mumbled something, but went about their assignments. As we walked I said “let’s go to the base and look at the rooms again.”
He said “let do that”.
We walked into the base going up the stairs I showed him the rooms on the left then those on the right. Passing the last room we came to the bathroom. I turned on the water again this time it squirted clear water. I said “Xantra must have got the filtration device on.”
Captain Lewis look like he was growing impatient saying “I thought we were here to assign rooms.”
“Yes Captain let’s do that. I suggest we stick the girls in three of the rooms on the right. The boy’s two to a room which leaves three people without a double room on this floor. However, the single room will be yours on this floor. Xantra will get the main room while I will bring some beddings up to the radar station. So everyone gets a room, but me. Sound fair to you Captain?”
Captain was trying to hide an evil little smirk, but it was apparent saying “fine with me.”
“Good let’s get back downstairs.”
As we walked down the stairs we started to notice it was getting dark. By the time we got down the stairs, all of the supplies from the transport was in the lobby. Greg was sending them to their correct rooms. As I spoke to him the lights started flickered coming on. He said “good, it was getting quite dark in those rooms.”
I said “well Greg hopefully they will stay on, but the main question I have is do we got some food?”
He replied “already in the dining area.”
I then spoke to the rest of the group saying “head into the dining area to get something to eat.”
Xantra walked out of a room, where I guess she finally found the power for the building, wiping her hands. She said “well we got power and water filtration which should last us awhile. Those generators run off solar power so along as the sun shines recharging the batteries we are good.”
We turn walking towards the dining room and I said. “Thanks for doing that, I gave you the big room upstairs and I will be right down the hall if you need anything.”
“You did not have to give me the big room, but I do appreciate it. In the morning I will get to work on the transport so we can leave this place.”
I said “cool” and we walked into the dining room.

A few hours later after assigning all of the rooms I was headed to take a shower because my body really needed it. I learned from Greg about some spare uniforms he found in one of the supply crates. After the meeting I told him to pass them out to others. After everyone got theirs I picked up mine heading for the shower. Except it was already full of people washing of the grime. So I decided to see if Xantra would let me use her shower. I knocked on her door and she was still dressed in her dirty uniform. I said “I came to ask you to use your shower, but I see you haven’t used it yet. So I will come back later.”
She said “no come in you can use it first.”
“I don’t want to make you wait, I’ll wait.”
“No go ahead, I’m going to take a long one so waiting is no problem.”
I stepped into the room heading to the shower. When I got in the bathroom I took off my clothes and looked at my burn in the mirror. I thought to myself it needs to be cleaned good so it won’t be infected. I stepped into the shower and turned it on. The hot water poured from is spout. As I was cleaning my wound I heard the door open. Then the shower door open in stepped Xantra naked. She kissed me straight on the mouth and I shuttered as she touched my chest wrapping her arms around me. I leaned down saying to her “I love you”, which she already knew. The kiss turned into passionate sex which we took from the shower into the bedroom and did for the next few hours. Afterwards we sat there in silence and look into each other’s eyes finally falling asleep.

A New Home

Arthur awoke that morning around 6 am well he thought it was 6 am. He always awoke at that time so he was just assuming. He left his room heading downstairs for breakfast. When he got into the dining room he found Lieutenant Lloyd and Sergeant Mason already eating breakfast. He sat down next to them saying “hi” to them. As he opened his meal pack, Sergeant Mason said “hey listen what Lieutenant Lloyd just told me sir. Tell him sir.”
Lieutenant Lloyd spoke saying “I was just telling Sergeant Mason what Xantra told me about her people. They have the ability to communicate between minds. However, they cannot communicate with ours except for Bill.”
“Are you telling me Lieutenant that the man leading us is communicating with an alien telepathically?”
“Yes sir, he is.”
“Well that makes me mad. How do we know it is him that is leading us and not her?”
“Sir she never said she could influence him, but I didn’t ask her.”
“What do you think of this Sergeant Mason?”
“Captain, I don’t know about that, but I believe you should be leading us as senior member of the military. Some of these civilians may have been former soldiers, but you are an officer.”
Jon said “I don’t disagree with you Sergeant, but I believe they have done the best job they could so far.”
As they were speaking one of the civilians walk into the dining room. Captain Lewis said “well speak of this later.”

Ryan was just finishing up his guard duty for the night. He been sitting in the security room for the past four hours. Whitney was outside guarding the entrance so Ryan saw no need for him to watch the monitors. So he did what he always did explore the technology. He turned on the computer about four hours ago and found some very interesting things. He used the portable Xantra setup so he could read Lyrian texts. She wanted him to be able to turn on power switches for the buildings. So when he stuck the portable into the computer it changed the format to English. So he was easily able to search the computer. One of the things he found was a shield generator. He could turn the shield on or off. Another thing he found was the base had weapon systems in case of an attack. They registered as working, but he would need to make sure they actually worked. He couldn’t believe it here he was across the universe playing around with alien tech. Something he always dreamed of doing. So when Two Step came in the room telling him his shift was over, he hadn’t wanted to leave. However, he was quite hungry so he would grab something to eat and ask Xantra about the weapons. As he walked into the dining room though he saw Captain Lewis and Jon sitting with that Sergeant, they hushed their voices as he entered. However, he thought nothing of it and grabbed a meal heading to Xantra’s room.

I awoke the next morning to the sight of a beautiful woman lying next to me. I couldn’t believe I had made love to her last night, but it happened. I climbed out of bed and went into the bathroom. After returning from the bathroom I found her awake lying there. She said “come back to bed.”
I climbed back under the blanket and we kissed. The kissing turned into a full blown sex which lasted an hour. I only stopped because I heard someone pounding on the door. I grabbed my pants putting them on as I went to answer the door. I opened it to find Ryan standing there he had a portable in one hand and a food bag in the other. He said “Bill I’m sorry, I was looking for Xantra.”
Xantra said “in here Ryan come on in.”
She must have been a faster dresser than me because by the time he entered she had on all her clothes. As I reached down for my shirt she asked Ryan “why you need to see me?”
He sat on the bed placing the food on it saying “I found something interesting in the computer last night. I believe it is a defensive system built for the base.”
Xantra replied “well I did not know this base had one, but they could have put it in since I was here.”
I said “we have a defensive system that’s cool.”
She said “even more cool is it might have some of the parts we need to fix the ship. However, I will scrounge the hangar first for the parts just to see if they are any.”
Ryan said “well I’m glad I could make your day, I’m going then to eat this in my room.”
As he left the room I turned to Xantra saying “you want to finish.”
She kissed me on the lips yanking off my shirt and we went back to it.

We came down to the dining room about two hours later and most everybody was up now. I saw Captain Lewis was set off to the side talking with Sergeant Mason. Jon was with them to, but he look like he was just making small talk. Greg handed me a meal and I sat with Xantra. As I was sitting there Matt sat down to saying “well Phillip and Bryan are both awake. I just brought them both a meal and they feel fine. Phillip still looks a little depressed about losing his leg, but he says he’ll push through it.”
I said “good, whenever he feels up to it I like him to start interact with everyone. We don’t want him to feel shunned which might kill him.”
Matt replied “I’ll tell him. So what did you two do last night?”
I looked at him saying “how did you know?”
“Ryan’s my roommate remember?”
“Oh you know, but don’t tell anyone.”
“Too late I think everyone knows already.”
I looked over and saw Bruce giving me a thumbs up. I went to shrink my head down, but I decided against it. Nope, no one was going to make me ashamed again. I stood up speaking to everyone “Hi, everyone.”
They all said hi back in some way, I then started to change the subject on everyone’s mind. I said “well we had a good night last night some better than others, but this don’t change much.”
I got a giggle out of some and I continued. “The biggest challenge today is finding out what we need to fix the ship. Also what we really have for supplies. Greg, Whitney, and Two Step will account for all of our supplies not related to the dining room, security or med bay. Sara and Bob will go count all of our food calculating how long our supply will last. Matt and Doug will look over the medical supplies. We must know what we have in the way of medical equipment. Finally everyone not on guard duty will give Julian and Jessica their weapons. Xantra was able to get the armory opened last night and found some pistols with holsters in it. Not many, but enough for everyone. We will carry pistols around so we won’t lose our rifles. Once the weapon collection is done we will all meet in the hangar bay so Xantra can give us instructions on what we need to fix the ship.”
After saying all of this I sat down and gave Xantra a long kiss.

After searching through the aircraft hangar for about three hours Bruce came running over to me. He said “Bill and Xantra you go to see this.”
Xantra turned to him saying “what did you find?”
He said “just follow me.”
He directed us towards the offices on the right and in the corner buried beneath a pile of junk was a metal door. I was quite excited at this, but he said “there is more down below.”
We opened it started going down as we did it became more and more dark, but all of a sudden I saw light. In the middle of the light stood what look to be a subway car. Bruce said “this looks to be a cavern connected to something, those lights you see is just luminescence on the rocks.”
“Cool I never would have guessed that. Have you searched it very far?”
“Not yet, I came to get you when I found it.”
“Xantra what do you think of this?
“Well I guess they were mining down here. The car is a mining vehicle to move ore back and forth. It doesn’t do us any good unless.”
She jumped in the car and started to look around. You could hear her pulling off hatches and such. She said “finally I found what I needed it.”
“What you find Xantra?”
She exclaimed “the engine in this car is compatible with the transport. However, it is not everything we need, but can put us a bit closer to getting it to work.”
“It’s a start” I said.
She climbed out of the car saying “well need to break it down and carry it piece by piece out of here. I‘ll get started if you can get me some helpers.”
I said “get started and I’ll get you the help.”
I climbed back up to the hangar calling the rest of the people in it to come help us carry some things to the transport. We took a break for lunch an hour later, finally finishing up around dinner time. I came into the building and spoke to Greg who said “we found some personal items in the inventory.”
I told him “we’ll discuss it after dinner.”
So we all turned heading to the dining room.

After dinner Greg told me they found a bunch of Earth things in one of the boxes. He said “I guess the aliens took these items as spoils of war.”
I said “well what’s in it?”
He said “some books, mp3s, an ereader, and some computers.”
Do the electronics work?”
He said “yeah we tested them.”
“Is there enough for everyone?”
“About thirty items in the box. So yes enough.”
I said “well let’s have a drawing so everyone has a piece of home.”
He said “I thought you say that and I have already placed all the names in this hat here.”
“I’m so transparent.”
I spoke up to the group asking. “Is everyone here?”
They replied “yes” and I said “good, because I have a treat. We are about to give away personal items to everyone. They are books, mp3’s, an ereader, and some computers. We will have a drawing for each item. Greg has already placed your names in the hat so when I draw your name, come forward to collect one item. The first name is Jon. Come pick your item Jon.”
As he rummaged through the box he pulled out a Mp3 players. He said “I hope it has some good songs.”
I reached again in the hat and said “Bruce your next.”
Bruce choose one of the computers in the box. After Bruce went Ryan was chosen. He jumped at the chance to get the second computer. Captain Lewis followed them and got an ereader. Jessica was picked next getting the last Mp3 player. I was lucky because I pulled my name next. I choose the playing cards because I could have a lot of fun with them. After me Sara got the last computer. Bob got a yo-yo. Mary chooses a book. Julian was called next taking a pad and pens stating he wanted it because he does a lot of writing. Jack got a lighter. Ralph chooses a glove and ball. Whitney picked up a hairbrush. Nikki took a book. Doug took a ball. Matt took some needle and thread. Sergeant Mason grabbed the pocket knife. Xantra opted out. Lauren took a flashlight. While Two Step saw a harmonica and took it. Greg grabbed a book. Leaving Bryan and Phillip a bag of marbles and a book. After everyone got their items we all sat down to play with our new things. I sat next to Sara and she said “I’ve open this computer and found that it has a pretty good selection of games, and music.”
I said “cool.”
She then replied “I feel guilty about looking at another person’s computer and calling it my own.”
I said “well that is because you have kindness in your heart, but they won’t need it anymore.”
She said “well I see your point, but I still feel some guilt.”
After saying this she kissed me on the cheek and hugged me.
I said “enough of this guilt I think we should find a way to lift our spirits. And oh I think I have it.”
I looked down at the computer to surf the music and click on the file with country music on it and hit play all. The first song to pop up was a favorite of mine by Lonestar “Amazed.”
I stood up leaning down to her saying “may I have this dance?”
She grabbed my hand and stood up. She put her arms around me and we drifted softly to the song. While we did this others stood up and followed our example. Before long most of us were dancing. The song ended and the next song pop up and everybody got into it. It was by Tracy Bird “Ten Rounds.” As this one played I said to Sara “you feel better?”
She said “I feel better.”
Bruce then asked her to dance and I sat down next to Xantra. Xantra asked me “what were you doing?”
I said “dancing.”
“What is that?”
“You don’t have it on your world?”
“You do have music right?”
“Yes, but not like this and no what you call, dancing.”
“Well it is a way for us to express ourselves.”
Just as the song ended a new slow song came on. I asked “Xantra do you want to dance?”
She said “yes” taking my hand. I lead her out on the dance floor and we danced. She experienced trouble at first, but she got the hang of it as we went along. After the song ended she stayed with me dancing. The dancing went on for a few hours lifting everybody’s spirit. As the computer died I thought of how I would find a way to recharge it because we needed music. When most people hear music it livens a situation. It gives people the heart to go on. I believe in order for our morale to stay up we needed to have cheerful things to hear. After the computer died Sara picked it up heading for her room saying “goodnight Bill.”
“Goodnight Sara.”
I said goodnight to the rest as Xantra and i went to our room. I went to the bathroom when I returned Xantra was under the blanket. She lifted it up to show me she was naked. I sat down next to her and we started kissing. She took off my clothes and we went to bed. Even though we hadn’t showered that day. If we had, after what we did that night, we would have needed another. I sat there stroking her hair as she fell asleep and thought about how lucky I was at that moment.


Administrator Perdan paced back and forth behind the communication techie. He said “try them again.”
Techie replied “trying again sir.”
A little time passed then the techie said “no sir still not answering.”
Perdan could not believe it Commander Batea was still not answering hails. He was three cycles late to Astra with his new cargo of slaves. Batea was always one to play loose with his cargo so when he did not show up on time Perdan thought nothing of it. However, when he was cycles behind schedule something must truly be wrong. The problem was Perdan was supposed to report if any ship arrived late. He not reporting Batea might get him fired or worse ex communicated from the clan. Nevertheless he needed to report this into the Hurrean command. He looked at the Techie and said “put the Hurrean command in my office.”
The techie looks back in fear because he knew what it meant to contact them. He then turned saying “placing Hurrean command in your office sir.”
Perdan turned walking into his office. The first words he heard were “why have you contacted me?”
“We have a situation sir.”
“What is the situation Administrator Perdan?”
“General we have lost contact with a slave ship. It was due to arrive three cycles ago, but we have not had contact.”
“Why am I hearing about this now?”
“Sir, Commander Batea has a reputation of being late and I thought it not best to contact you if he was to show up a cycle late.”
“Well you were wrong Administrator Perdan, because now I have to waste one of my war vessels to go look for Commander Batea.”
“Yes, sir I know, but maybe his ship has just had a malfunction and he is unable to contact us.”
“Well hope that is the case Administrator Perdan, because if we lost an entire ship full of slaves to either a disaster or pirates this will be the last time you’re an administrator.”
“Yes General, I understand.”
As the general hung up Perdan stomach twisted in knots knowing this would be his last day as an administrator. He and Batea been skimming the profits for years so he would be set up real nice once he got off the planet. However, he needed his code discs from his house. He gave his staff the go around hoping he could make it home in time to escape. As he was running to his home he noticed the guards were already there. They must be trying to prevent him from leaving until his clearance could be revoked. Lucky thing though they did not know about the secret entrance he built into his home. He climbed in gathering up all of his precious things plus any money he could find. He grabbed the code discs heading for the secret entrance. He was able to sneak by the guards again. Jumping into the first transport he could find he blasted off this moon for the last time.

General Heras after getting off the line with Administrator Perdan called the local guards to stake out his home. He knew men like Perdan and all they thought of was money. So he knew he would run at the first chance. After alerting the local guards he got on the comm to Captain Rostra. He ordered him to take the Tueur out to find Commander Batea lost slave ship. He hated to pull anyone off defensive line, but a crop of slaves that valuable needed to be found. After ordering the ship out, he went back to the bath he was interrupted from.

Food Shortage

The ship crashed about five days ago and life here on this planet had been quite pleasant. Xantra has work tirelessly on the ship everyday replacing the engine parts. However, she had no time frame for when she be done. Good thing this place was beginning to become livable. The base had running water which allowed us to take showers. Ryan has been playing around with the defensive systems until Xantra pulled some parts from it. The weapons still work, but not the shield generators. So we were without protection except for our guard duty. This seems to matter little because we had a fence to keep out the wilderness. Xantra and I had started a relationship with many others pairing off as well. We didn’t know if this would be the last place we lived or if we ever get off this planet. So we made the best out of what we had. People spent their free time working on things. Bruce and a few of the guys explored the downstairs area to see where it would take them. However, it was quite expansive so they hardly got anywhere. Others played card games or read books. Even Phillip and Bryan were starting to interact with the group. Phillip was limited in what he could do, but we made him head of the kitchen. He did fine at this job. Bryan was better off than Phillip, his wounds healed rather quickly and he could do pretty much anything. So things were going well until this morning when Phillip informed me, we were getting short on food. This left me in the position of sending people outside the fence into the jungle. Hopefully we would find some type of food we could eat. It pained me to venture out, but I decided everyone not working on the ship or doing guard duty needed to go out. This made it about fifteen people. I decided we split in four groups of four. My group would only have three. However, before we left Xantra stopped us. She handed me one of the medical portables and said “this portable can be used to locate edible food.”
I ask “how can it do that?”
She said “it’s simple; it will buzz when it finds a compatible food. Just place the portable over it like this and purple means good everything else is not. Yellow means do not eat or touch. Hold out your arm Bill.”
She then stuck me with the device. I said “owww what the.”
She said “I had to get the portable configured to your species.”
She clicks a few buttons on each and they all registered our biochemistry. She said “now these portables will know what you can and cannot eat.”
I said “ok now that we have solved that problem I suggest we start our patrol for food. Captain Lewis will be Team 1 with Greg, Doug and Lauren heading north. Julian will be Team 2 with Bruce, Mary and Bob heading south. I will be Team 3 with Jessica, and Sara heading east. While Jon will be Team 4 with Nikki, Sergeant Mason, and Bryan heading west. The ship will be home base. So when we respond to each other respond with those designators. Ok now we can go. Everyone else you know your jobs.”
After everyone got a rifle from the armory we left the fence area. We would be able to keep in touch due to some communication devices found in the security room a few days earlier. Stepping outside of the fence brought about the fear of the unknown. However, I recovered from this heading east with my group yelling to everyone else “bring back any food you find.”

As we headed east I let Jessica take point and I took rear. We walked for about thirty minutes scanning things as we went when the device started to buzz like it found something. When we got closer to the food we realized we were getting near a stream. As we looked around for the food source we realized it was across the stream. It looked like a bunch of bananas hanging from the tree. There were many outcroppings of these banana like fruit. However, it would be impossible to swim across without losing some of the fruit. Some may have thought this stream wasn’t that wide and they could swim it. However, I cautioned against this, just in case the water had a fast undertow. Where I lived back in Texas was a stream many people thought they could master, but it killed them. Jessica turned to me and said “I can do this I’m a very good swimmer.”
I said “you may be good, but your life is my responsibility plus we may lose some of the fruit when you swim across. So I decided we should look for a way across.”
After agreeing with me we all headed up stream for about twenty minutes when we found a tree lying across both banks. It was small, but I thought we could shimmy our way across. I sent everyone else over first covering our backs. Then I started to shimmy my way across the log. As I came to the other side I saw to my right a big green thing headed my way. I struggled to get to the other side faster and just as I was almost there it came out of the water and almost bit me. However, before it could bite me its head explode. I look over and Jessica had her rifle pointed at it. The creature looked the same as an alligator, but was a little different. However, its head was gone so we would never know. I said “thanks” and sat down on the bank. As I did this I noticed the body was still there. The water must have been shallow so I told Sara to grab me a stick so I could push the body to the bank. She grabbed a big stick from the woods and I climbed back out on the log. I shoved the body towards the bank and everyone pulled the body out of the water. When I got back to the bank I ran the portable over it and saw that it registered purple so the meat would be edible. I pulled out the rope I put in the backpack in case of emergency and told everyone to grab some logs from the woods. We tied them together to form a stretcher. After strapping the gator to the stretcher we headed for the bananas. The bananas were a good twenty minutes’ walk from the log. After scanning them with the portable they registered bright purple which meant they were edible. Jessica volunteered to climb the tree and get some down for us. After scrambling up there she knocked the first bunch to the ground. After the first one fell I peeled one to try it out. I was wary of this not because I disbelieved Xantra, but rather the fact I hated bananas. However, when I took a bite it tasted more like a cross between an apple and orange. Sara took the next bite and she liked it too. We were all quite hungry not having breakfast. After we all took a bite I yelled up to Jessica, she should knock more to the ground because they were quite good. She knocked down about five more bundles then scrambled down the tree landing in a crouch position. I gave her a piece of the fruit which she gobbled up saying “damn better than a banana. This is like a cross between an apple and orange.”
Sara said “I know I’m sure glad it doesn’t taste like a banana. I believe we should call it an orange banapple or banapple for short.”
As they were speaking I said we need to get our stuff and head back to the base. After packing the stretcher and our bags with the fruit we started for the base. It was quite a load so we struggled to carry the food, but we persevered. As we came to the log we stopped to make a plan to cross. I decided Jessica would be first then Sara. I threw the bags over quite easily, but it took us forever to wiggle the stretcher across the log. After finally getting across the stream we continued towards the base. As we got closer to the ship I was able to contact Julian and call his team back. By the time we got back to the fence it was after lunch time. However, Phillip had a fire going in the dining room for the food. After we dragged in the stretcher Bruce went about pulling the gator off and carving it up. I thought this was going to be a good meal.

As his team headed west Jon took lead. He had always been a helicopter pilot so he never really led anybody. However, Bill’s trust in him proved to him he could do it. He liked the guy even though Captain Lewis thought he was leading us down a path of destruction. As he walked east he kept wondering if this portable was ever going to beep. Just as he thought this it started to go crazy. He didn’t think it had anything to do with food. So when he looked at it he saw his team was being surrounded. He didn’t know by what, but they needed to get out of there. As he told the team to run he saw the first beast. It looked like a wolf, but it was more ferrous. It went straight for Nikki and Jon fired his weapon. He hit it in the head, just as he was about to settle himself another attack happen. This time they hit came out of nowhere and all at once they hit Sergeant Mason. Mason knocked off the first one and he was about to throw the second when a third attacked. All of the team converged on Mason shooting at the animals when others attacked. Nikki was not paying attention when one grabbed her by the leg. It started to drag her, but Bryan fired his rifle straight into the creature. Blowing out the sides everywhere. Finally after those last attacks nothing else came. So the team fought off the rest. By the time they were done Nikki had received a gash in the side of her leg. Bryan covered it the best he could, but with no medical training they would need to get back to base. Bryan picked up Nikki while Jon helped Sergeant Mason limp back to base.

Captain Lewis and his team headed north. They painstakingly made their way through the forest. However, they were having a hard time finding food. Until they found a stream as they followed it, it began to grow wider. It grew so wide with each step it became a massive lake with an open field. This open field is where they finally found food. In the field grazing by the lake were beasts that look a little like goats. Not like the goats you see every day on a farm, but rather like the goats that reside in the mountains. Lauren stopped Captain Lewis saying “if I’m right these goats will be real hostile. Their kin on Earth are.”
He thanked her, but ignored her advice. He walked up to the creatures and instead of them running away they charged him. The first few missed him, but the last two got him on his sides. As he lay on the ground he heard two shots ring out. Followed by his attackers hitting the ground. Sergeant Wainwright was the first to get to him saying foolish boy you could have got yourself killed. He said “that is Captain to you Sergeant.”
He said “yes sir” and clicked his heels together. By this time Captain Lewis said “at ease and thanks for saving me.”
He said that wasn’t me, but the girl. She is a pretty good shot. Took down both beasts by herself.”
He said “well that’s pretty good” and turned to her saying “thanks private for the assist.”
She said “no problem sir, been hunting all of my life. My father is, no I mean, was into it a lot.”
Captain Lewis said “well he sure trained you well.”
She said “yeah he did” and pulled a knife from her boot.
She leaned down to each of the two goats she killed, slitting their throats.
“Well now that’s done all we have to do is carry them back to base.” Captain Lewis said “I’ll take one and Sergeant Wainwright will take the other. We’ll stop along the way and exchange loads.”
With this they turned and headed back to base.

After I got out of the bathroom I found Julian and Jessica working in the kitchen getting our food ready for lunch. They set up the food as shish kabob. They stuck gator then fruit then gator again. It was quite magnificent the way they done it. After doing this they gave them to Bruce who was placing them over the grill. Phillip stepped aside when Bruce ask to cook. Julian told the rest of us waiting for the food. “Wait a minute and some of the food will be ready.”
I said “cool deal Julian. Anything is better than those rations we‘ve been eating. I can’t believe we are grilling on another planet. Too bad we don’t have any sauce to cover the meat with.”
Bruce said “kinda reminds me of sitting in the backyard cooking sausages and hamburgers with Liz and Derek.”
He whimpered a little, but Jessica reached her arm around him and said “I know hon.”
This surprised me because she looked like the mean military type, but pain does affect us all. The conversation went on for a few more minutes and the food was ready. I took some for me and Two Step who was on guard duty. As I got to security I heard him singing a little tune. It was a catching little thing. However, he stopped singing it when I walked up on him. I said “what you whistling?”
“Nothing just a little tune my momma taught me.”
“Well I’m glad you are handling this so well.”
“It isn’t that I’m handling it, it’s that I know it can’t be changed.”
“Well I brought you some lunch; hope it’s better than the rations.”
“Me to Bill.”
After giving him the meal I headed back to the dining room. As I was about to sit down I heard screaming. Jon and his team was returning with some wounded. Nikki and Sergeant Mason were hurt pretty badly. Matt jumped right in trying to take care of them the best he could. However, he was just one man. Xantra grabbed the last of the Meta and poured it over Sergeant Mason’s leg which stopped the bleeding. However, none was left for Nikki. So this forced Matt to resort to normal medical procedures. As he did this Captain Lewis and his team walked in carry what look to be goats. When Captain Lewis saw Nikki he dropped the goat to the ground running over. He had been having a semi personal relationship with her. As she lay their bleeding, he was overcome with rage. He assaulted Lieutenant Jon saying “how could you let her get hurt? You no good for nothing officer.”
Just as he was about to punch Jon I stepped in between them. He said “this is more your fault than his.”
Not wanting to get in a fight I walked away. Nevertheless, he ran over pushing to me ground. I jump up with a precision he did not expect from a chubby man. When he threw the next punch I counter it. Captain Lewis was able to kick some dust into my eyes, but this only slowed me down. Once he approached me, I grabbed him pulling him to the ground. We rolled around punching each other widely. I took him by surprise when I slapped him across the eyes with the back of my hand. This blinded him for a second, but it was all I needed to flip him into an arm lock which broke his arm. He responded with the hardest punch he could do to my nuts. However, this did not faze me and the next position I put him in was the sleeper hold and the lights went out. I stood up from Captain Lewis after putting him in the choke hold doing something I knew was wrong. I kicked him as hard as I could in the nuts. Lying down for a second to catch my breath. Doug ran over to check on me. I refused his help telling him to check Captain Lewis. As he was checking him out he started to wake I pulled my pistol out. A lot of people yelled at me not to do it I yelled “just wait.”
I stuck the gun right up to his face and I was the first thing he saw. He looked up at me with fear in his eyes. You could tell he was in a lot of pain. I said to him “I could have killed you when I put you to sleep, but I didn’t you know why?”
He shook his head no. I said “the reason why is because I need you, not because you’re a great soldier, but rather you’re a human being. Human beings are in short supply on this planet. I know you’re hurting from what happen to Nikki, so I won’t kill you. We all need to work together to get off this planet. However, if you ever attack me again,”
I then shot next to him pressing my hot barrel into his heart. “I won’t miss your heart. Take care of him Doug”
I yelled “everybody gather around now. I know it has been hard and we have lost people to death or injuries. However, we need to stick together in order to survive. Captain Lewis seems not to understand this and has shirked me at every turn. I am a man trying to keep the human race alive. I guess I’ll have to resort to some drastic measures to do this. So my first measure is to punish Captain Lewis. His punishment is three days locked in the cargo bay. Afterwards he can return to his original position if he can take my orders. Julian take him away and make sure the guards know not to interact with him.”
As Julian took him away he tried to struggle and others just let him be dragged out of the building. Some looked at me in horror, but others knew I had to do it. I left the hall entering the dining room again to get some more food. Others followed me, but some did not.


After Eric woke up from his drug induce coma he was told the news by Airman Reese. Reese said “Captain Lewis and Bill got in a fight when you came in Sergeant. Bill beat him down and placed him under house arrest. However, the way he put the Captain under arrest don’t sit well with me. He kicked him the nuts and shot his weapon next to him. Afterwards he placed the hot barrel into the Captain’s chest give him a burn scar. So that is why I’m telling you this Sergeant. So we can right this wrong.”
Eric knew right away what needed to happen. He and Captain Lewis had been formulating a plan over the last few days on how to take control of this situation. Bill’s treatment of Captain Lewis made it all the more urgent. So he ordered Airman Reese to gather key personnel. People he knew to have problems with Bill. Airman Reese stops him saying “one of the people on your list is performing guard duty right now in the security room.”
“Who is it Airman?”
“Private Aarons, Sergeant.”
“Leave her there well pick her up on the way, but get the rest.”
After a half hour everyone was there: Lieutenant Lloyd, Airman Reese, Bob Humble, Private Kasey, Private Larsen, and Specialist Ronson. Total people in this little rebellion were eight, but he figured he could get the rest to follow when the command changed. However, some may need to be left on this planet. He asked Specialist Ronson “How far is she from fixing the ship?”
“Just one more piece is needed and she has it there already. I can probably put it in, but I might need her to talk me through it.”
“Ok, good then. Here is the deal people we are in a bad situation here. Our commanding officer has been placed under arrest by civilians who have no business doing that. So my thought is we take back the control these civilian so love. Who made them the ones to tell us what to do? Yes, they may have facilitated our escape. That doesn’t give them the right to lead us. Especially that man who is either dumb or under the control of that alien. So are you with me?”
Lieutenant Lloyd said “no way man, I’m not going to help a man who hates me. And what makes you Sergeant; think you can lead us on an alien planet. I will not stand for….”
Doug hit him with a portable knocking him out. He said “he’ll be out for a few hours so we can do this.”
Eric said “anymore unbelievers.”
No one moved to join him, so Eric said “well that leaves seven of us, but it will still work. The Captain and myself have been formulating a plan to take this base. It was a two prong plan, but I will need to move it to three. The first prong will be to take security. Once we take security this will lead to the second prong. To capture Bill and that alien in their room. Once they are capture the third prong will be a go. That is the insertion into the ship taking out the guards holding Captain Lewis. Once we have the ship and the hostages we can fix the ship leaving this planet for Earth.”
“Does this sound good soldiers.”
They all replied “yes Sergeant.”
He continued “Specialist Ronson, Bob, and Private Larsen will be the third prong. Me, Airman Reese, Private Kasey, and Private Aarons will be the first and second prong. Will pick up Private Aarons when we launch the first prong. How you might ask is simple. Private Kasey will go see Private Aarons as a pretense to get her ready. Once they’re in position we will go. We will capture Sergeant Wainwright who we know won’t join us. Afterwards Private Kasey and myself will launch the second prong upstairs. Airman Reese will be our backup in case something happens. While Private Aarons will keep up appearances for the rest. Everyone got it.”
“Yes, Sergeant.”
“Alright let’s do this.”
Private Kasey walked down the hall like nothing was up. When Sergeant Wainwright asked what she needed she said “just here to visit Lauren, Greg.”
He said “ok,” and she entered the room. Private Aarons was surprised to see her, but knew a plan was in place. When Kasey gave the code word Ares she knew it was a go. She got up not having much to put on because she had always been prepared for this. Outside she heard a commotion like Sergeant Wainwright was having a fire fight with her team. He called for her help and she ran out like she was there to help him. He said “I don’t know what has gotten into them, but they came around the corner way too quick to be friendly. They fired at me and well you know the rest.”
She said “yes I do.”
As he turned to look around the corner she slit his throat. He never knew what hit him. Sergeant Mason asks “why did you do that Private?”
“Sir it was the best thing, he would have fought us long after this day.”
“Very well, but don’t do it again Private, stay here with Airman Reese unless we call you.”
Yes, Sergeant.”
With that the second prong started.

Sara was in my room for about an hour now after she wondered in here because she was having a bad night. So Xantra and myself sat with her as she cried about her husband and children. I knew not what she felt because all I lost was siblings and mother. However, I could try to feel what she lost through them. So when she spoke of how she wanted to leave this life to join them. I said to her “Sara, I know you hurt. We all hurt, but talking of suicide will not help them. They are in a better place. You know this. Every time you say a prayer to God, you place your faith that you family is with him.”
With me saying that she cried a little more mumbling “I know, but it is so hard.”
As she was about to say something else the door opened, in stepped Sergeant Mason. He looked angry, ready to pop someone. He said “Stay where you are or you will be hurt.”
I said “what’s going on Sergeant?”
“I can’t let you keep running this place, you are out of control.”
“Out of control Sergeant, really what would make you say that?”
“Your treatment of the Captain for one thing and your inability to do anything without someone getting hurt.”
By this time Xantra had enough, but before she could do anything Whitney hit her on the head. As she was about to hit her again I screamed “stop, stop I’ll do what you say.”
He said “good” and I reached down looking at Xantra’s head. She was out cold, but not injured bad.

Julian was minding his own business when he heard on the comm system Ares and he knew something was up. No one was supposed to use the system and Ares was no word he knew. So when he saw three forms approaching the transport he yelled out to them. He said “what are you doing out here?”
No one answered. He said it again “what are you doing out here?”
Still no one answered. When he saw the rifle he knew they were trying to take the ship for themselves. He fired a warning shot and hit the button to close the door. As the door shut he heard them screaming outside. They must have been real angry because they pounded of the door like it was made of glass. After a few minutes of this they stopped and must have set to unconventional methods. Ryan went to the cockpit to watch them when he saw what they were doing Julian heard him yelled back “we got to stop them.”
After yelling Ryan walked into the back with his portable. He said “I have an idea, but it might not work.”
He plugged it into the door panel click a few buttons. He said “Julian when I click this next button whoever is touching the panel will be shocked. That’s the good news; the bad news is the door will open. So be ready to shoot.”
Julian nodded his head aiming his rifle out the door. When Ryan hit the button you could hear a scream and the door slid open. Julian never hesitated; he left off as many shots as he could. Ryan tried to jump out of the way, but took one to his shoulder. Though they tried to fight back, Julian had hit both men left standing by the door forcing the fight to end. When he looked out he saw it was Jack, Bryan, and Bob. Well what was left of Bob. He took most of the shots point blank. Bryan was hit in the kneecap and he was out of commission. This left Jack knocked out from the voltage. In that instant Julian knew what had happen. Captain Lewis people were making a power play. He needed to act fast or they would take over. He pulled in Bryan screaming at the top of his lungs while Ryan dragged in Jack. After they tied up the traitors they opened the door to Captain Lewis’ cell. Julian screamed at him saying “your plan didn’t work.”
Captain Lewis looks up laughing to himself “what plan?”
“The plan to take over.”
“Prove it, you loser.”
“I don’t have to prove it, I already have proof. Just the fact these men attack us is proof. So you are going to tell me the plan.”
“No and just try to make me.”
“I don’t have to Captain” as he stepped on Bryan’s missing kneecap. He said “because if you do not tell me I’m going to kill these men one by one then you.”
“You wouldn’t? You were a soldier.”
“No I was a Marine. Big difference is we have to do what is necessary to finish the job. I don’t want to kill them, but if you don’t tell me I’ll have no choice.”
Captain Lewis looked at Private Larsen and then Specialist Ronson knowing he could not let them die. He said “ok, give me the comm. All I have to do is say we are in control. It has to be me.”
Julian held the comm to his face and he spoke saying “Sergeant we are in control so prepare to leave.”
Sergeant Mason answered “roger that sir we just need to wake the alien to fix the ship.”
“Right Jack told me that.”
All of a sudden you could hear a gunshot go off and Sergeant Mason came on the comm again. “Ok, whoever is threatening Captain Lewis get on the horn.”
“Julian here what do you want.”
“Let the Captain go or I will kill Bill. I just shot Sara in the leg.”
As he was speaking a warning beacon sounded throughout the ship. Sergeant Mason asked “what it was?”
Ryan replied “we have incoming.”
As he spoke he heard a door swing upon and all hell broke loose.

The Dawn

As Eimhin’s ship came out of hyperspace above the planet his second in command stated “captain the planet has life on it the Lyrian lied to us. What do you want to do about this?”
“Well first thing I want you to do is to scan and find the majority of life. Then I want you to prep the tubes and lasers for an assault. If we can get the majority of them we won’t have much of a fight.”
“Doing that sir. I count must of them is in the tall building with only a few in transport. However, the transport does seem to have weapons.”
“Lock one on the building then the transport.”
“Very well sir. Both are locked and ready.”
“Let them fly second.”
The missiles left the tube heading for their targets.

Bruce and Matt went downstairs when they heard gunshots, but they were unable to move the door no matter how hard they tried. Finally giving up they decided to go upstairs to tell Bill what was going on. Communication devices were limited so they would have to tell him in person. However, as they got closer to the door they could here yelling going on inside. Then a shot ranged out and they heard Sergeant Mason say he shot Sara. This made Bruce angry because he cared for her not as a girlfriend, but as a sister. He hit the door with all of his might knocking down whoever was in front of it.

The door swung open hitting Whitney straight in the back knocking her down. This startled Sergeant Mason long enough for me to pull the pistol I had hidden under my pillow. I fired one shot which went straight through his head. He never saw it coming. As he slumped to the floor Whitney tried to let off a shot. However, Xantra must not have been as hurt as I thought and stopped her from doing this. When she was done with Whitney she looked a little like a jig saw puzzle. As the tussle ended we heard and felt an explosion. The radar station toke the full brunt of the attack, but a lot of the ceiling was down. I yelled to everyone we had to get to the bottom floor. Picking up Sara and rushing down the stair was not good for me. However, my adrenaline helps me through it. As I reached the floor I heard Captain Lewis yelling to whoever was at the security station to stop firing. As they did another explosion rocked the base.

After hearing Ryan say incoming Julian told Captain Lewis let’s settle this later, were under attack. Captain Lewis agreed with him and Ryan said “we need to get inside now. I need to get the weapon systems online.”
Julian said “let’s go then.”
Captain Lewis pointed at the Bryan and Jack saying “what about them.”
Julian said “they’ll have to wait” and he left the transport. Just as they left the transport the top of the building exploded. They barely made it to the hangar when the ship went up. Captain Lewis thought about the two men left inside, but nothing he could do for them now. As they came to the front entrance whoever was inside opened fire on them. Captain Lewis yelled “stop firing it’s the Captain.”
As they did another explosion hit the building. Even though the building was hit the men inside complied with his orders. They came out showing it was Private Aarons and Airman Reese. Captain said “Ryan has to get the guns online, help him now.”
As Private Aarons complied he heard banging on the door. He spoke to Airman Reese saying “help us move this desk out from the door.”
As they moved the desk they heard the cannon come alive firing at whatever was attacking them.

As I came out of the door I heard Ryan yell he hit whatever had been attacking us. This brought some joy to me because when I saw Captain Lewis I was quite mad. The first thing I did was set Sara down allowing Bruce to pick her up caring her to the med bay. Matt had been caring Whitney and continued to carry her there. Airman Reese followed them to the bay and I said to Captain Lewis. “Look what your power play has cost us. If we had not been fighting, we still might have an intact base. Now we have a ragtag base and a destroyed ship.”
The transport was still blazing and could be seen for miles. I continued “so now my question to you. Do you want to fight humans or aliens?”
He looked at me saying “aliens.”
“Then let’s mount up because we are going to war.”

The Eyes

As Eimhin got up from his busted command chair he was quite angry. Those pest shot his precious ship out of the sky. Now here he was stuck on a planet with no way off because he destroyed the only other flight capable ship. His first officer stirred and he reached down pulling him out of the mess. The rest of the crew appeared dead, so it matter little if he left them for now. What he needed to do was to get off this ship and take the base. Because if he did, he might have a chance to call his old buddy in the Hurrean command to pick him up. As he stepped out of the ship he heard footsteps in the distance. They must have the same ideal about his ship. So now it was going to be a battle of wills to see who the better man in combat is.

Me and Captain Lewis settled our differences for the moment allowing us to go to war together. As we entered the forest where the ship crashed we fanned out. A total of eight was all we had to work with because people were either dead, injured, or busy helping the injured. This coup almost cost us the planet, but hopefully it wouldn’t cost us a way off this planet. As we approached the ship I decided we would leap frog to our objective. I sent Bruce, and Jessica first. Then Julian and Mary, then Xantra and Two Step went. Captain Lewis and I followed close behind. As we came closer to the ship I saw movement on the portable, we had two bogeys. We spread our formation out to take them from different sides when all hell broke loose.

Muztagh awoke in the storage room where he been thrown, finding the door open. The last thing he remembered was the ship being hit then crashing to the ground. As he stepped out of the room he heard a fire fight was taking place outside. He knew he needed to help whoever was out there. He learned over the trip Eimhin and his team were ex Hurrean Guard, some of the best Hurrean soldiers. So whoever was out there, hopefully Lyrians, needed his help. He found one of the crew dead on the floor with his weapon still in his holster, grabbing it he took off for the exit. As he came out of the hatch he found the second in command crouched behind the ship. The second never saw it coming as Muztagh pointed his pistol at him firing the shot, killing him instantly. However, the glee he received from this was short lived when a shot rang by him forcing him to step back inside the ship. As he did he fell backwards knocking himself out of the fire fight for the moment.

Arthur was listening to Bill give orders when he saw an alien appear at the hatch. He saw it shoot at something so he fired at him. The alien fell backwards which took him out of Arthur’s line of fire. Arthur look down at the portable hoping to get the signal of the other alien, but he could not find him. So he step in the direction of the ship in hopes he could flush him out. As he made it to the edge of the cover a rustle in the bushes startle him. However, instead of being an alien, it was some kind of animal. Or so he thought as he continued hearing the bushes again he turned and never thought another thought.

Eimhin lying in the bushes cover caught up with one of the aliens. He was quite different from the aliens he seen while in duty. However, this did not stop him from pulling the trigger on him. After the alien passed him he snuck up behind him fire through his head at point blank range. One down seven to go. He turned skulking towards the other aliens who seem to be good at diversions. They were trying to flush him out, but they had another thing coming to them because he would not fall for it. As he snuck over were the apparent leader was giving orders, he reached down in his boot to pull out his knife. He went to cut the guys throat, but another alien must have been watching his back. Because when he went to cut the throat a hand caught his pushing him back towards the brush. As he tried to stop it he aimed his weapon at the assailant and firing. It worked; the assailant took one to the chest. He stumbled back out into the brush as a shot rang by.

As I watch Mary struggling with the alien who tried to kill me I tried to shoot it. However, she blocked my way. As I was moving to get a cleaner shot I heard the blast and saw the alien run. I took a shot at it, missing it, but I was little preoccupied with Mary. As I got to her I knew she was in the thrall of death because her eyes glistened over as she coughed the last of her breath and blood. Seeing I could do nothing for her I continued in the brush after the alien. I screamed to the rest follow me as I stumbled about trying to get the picture of her death from my mind.

Muztagh finally situated himself when he saw Eimhin running through the brush. He knew he could help whoever was out there, but they might kill him. However, he was not going to let them die while he still had a breath in his body. He ran to the left hoping to cut Eimhin off. As he did he ran smack dabbed into someone. Whoever it was stood firm which knocked him to the ground, as he rolled to his side looking up to find Xantra Princess of Lyria standing over him. She looked at him with fear in her eyes pulling her weapon towards him. He quickly gave her the sign of obedience he learned so many years ago. She reached down picking him up saying “What are you doing here?”
“I was kidnapped by the Hurreans you are fighting.”
“So you do not help them.”
“No my princess I do not.”
“Good help me send this one to his death.”
“My pleasure my princess.”
After showing his obedience they continued on their way to catch the final Hurrean.

Eimhin kept up his running as he fired behind back hoping to get away. However, as he ran he noticed those trailing him kept getting further behind. He thought this might be because they lacked his physical strength, so he continued to run faster leaving them behind. Just as he thought he might get away two shots hit him in the chest. Falling to the ground in a thud he couldn’t feel his arms. How was it he survived all those wars to die here on an unknown planet? This could not be it, but his killers turned him over. And he saw before him the little twerp who brought him here and another Lyrian. As they stood over him, he growled the best he could trying to show he was unafraid to die. When the other Lyrian aimed her weapon….

I heard the shot ring out through the forest and I hoped it was the end of the Hurrean. Xantra had contacted me through her telepathy earlier she had a fellow Lyrian with her. Also they were about to take the Hurrean down, which I not known it was one at the time. I slowed my team down as she requested and they were able to catch him. As I stepped out of the brush I saw her standing over the Hurrean with another Lyrian. She introduced him saying “this is Muztagh. He used to be stationed here. Those Hurreans in the ship captured him after escaping a slave camp. He was forced to tell them the location for his survival.”
Muztagh bowed to me saying “greetings earthling Xantra has told me much about you. She says you can share our telepathy.”
I said “it seems only to work with Xantra, but I have not put it to the test.”
“Well in the coming days I hope we can try.”
“Me to.”
Xantra broke up our conversation saying “let’s get a look at this ship.”
We turned heading towards it, ready for anything.


Perdan landed on the Hurrean home world three cycles after his removal as administrator. He left the transport he stole in the open docks hoping no one would notice. As he got closer to the bank he became more excited than he been for the last three cycles. Here he was about to make the biggest withdraw of his life. As he entered the bank he noticed no one was looking in his direction which was a good thing. So he stepped in front of the console sliding in his chip. Just as he suspected all the money was there. He was a rich man now nobody could stop him. As he gathered up the money from the console something strange happen. He felt a sharp pain in his back. As he turned to see what the pain was he came face to face with the General. He was holding the handle of the knife he just thrust into his back. The General kissed him on the head as he slid off the blade. That was the last thing he saw as he drifted off to a beautiful dream of himself enjoying his wealth.

Tueur searched for days before finding Commander Batea’s ship scattered throughout the Glizen Sector. Captain Rostra ordered a full scan of the wreck in hopes he might find some intact memory sticks which might tell what had happen. However, after days of search they had only found mostly burned memory sticks. Though Rostra knew this would be probably pointless he set his best techie on it. Just now the techie contacted him. He said “Captain you need to hear this. I got a good transmission out of the damage stick we found yesterday.”
Rostra said “play it.”
A second later he heard this the prisoners have escaped led by a human. He is …… but my guards believe they can stop him. …… in the engine room which seems to be his objective. He is accompanied by a …… we found on Earth. If anyone can hear this please ……… help.
As Rostra heard this he said “we need to contact the General.”
The techie said “we need to leave this sector first Captain.”
“Why do we need to leave?”
“Well the area is full of slight radiation which is why we never heard the call for help. Somehow the radiation blocks signals. So if we want to contact the General we need to leave sir.”
Rostra got on the comm saying “flight officer make for Astra so we can contact the General.”
As the ship jumped into hyperspace Rostra left the techies work area for his cabin. As he did he thought humans might be someone the Hurreans need to study. If one human could take a prison ship while in hibernation sleep. Then what could a thousand do. He would tell the General of this when he got in comm range.

After a month of fixing the Hurrean ship we were finally going to leave this planet. However, some of us were going to stay. The ship could not handle all of us and we did not want to suffocate on the way to New Lyria. Julian, Jessica, Doug, Ralph, Muztagh, and Whitney were staying on Wald which we learned was the planets name. Muztagh would be helping Julian and Ralph rebuild the base. In regards to Whitney and Doug, I decided they should be pardon for their betrayal. However, in the case of Lauren she was put on trial. I defended her, but she was found guilty of murder. I had even put Whitney and Doug as jurors, but she was still found guilty. We hanged her on a beautiful Sunday morning burying her next to my friend Rex. Some may say we had no right, but justice must be everywhere even without a government. As for the rest of us we would be going to New Lyria. Xantra counted down as I sat next to her. We let Jon have some sleep in the back so he could take over later. Giving me and Xantra plenty of sleep time together. She counted down 3.… 2.… 1.… lift off and we were on our way.

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