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  1. 2 points
    It was suggested that a thread be started to suggest tags for the tagging system in addition to what is already present. In Genre i would add: World Building, Poetry, Song/lyrics, Mystery, Murder Mystery and, Codex ( if people want to make glossaries so readers can check up on a term used in the story they are not sure of, like i have. ) I might also add: Political, philosophical, observational ( those these can become lightning rods for controversy so their exclusion would make sense. ) As for a body parts list that was proposed in the discord i would add: Penis, Vagina, paws, hands, Belly, neck, arms, Biceps, muscles, tail, ears, ( Pick of these what you would like ) In Interaction i would suggest: Solo, masturbation, Combat, fight, ( Because not all stories will be porn or romantic in nature ) Some might want a Species Section but that could become insane rather swiftly. Ok feel free to add your own suggestions.
  2. 1 point
    Jeremy sat down and leaned against the large tree, someone had told him what it was called, but he'd forgotten. It's bark was rough, and almost gold in color, it was at least twenty feet high and the 'leaves' were thin lines that shimmered, and made rainbows when the sun hit them at the right angle. It was his first time on Kelser, nine years after he'd found Gralgiranselhelrarvir. He'd been surprised when he found out they were coming here, and then he'd wondered why they hadn't they hadn't come sooner. He knew it wasn't because Gral wanted to keep him hidden, he was quite proud of their relationship, and had introduced him to his parents over vid. "I'm a hunter," Gral had said, "I keep my people safe, by being out here, hunting those who would hurt them." Jeremy had found it strange, considering how much Gral loved his family, and his world. Jeremy couldn't stand being on Earth, although he hadn't realized why, at the time, that was why he'd never done more than call his family. "Come on," one of the females said running toward him. "We're not done dancing!" "I am!" he replied. He tried to remember her name, but he had been introduced to so many of Gral's large family, that he couldn't. "I thought you hunters were suppose to be full of energy!" "We are! But no one trained me for *that*!" He pointed to the crowed dancing to the sound of the band. She nodded and ran back to the dance. Jeremy had danced with Gral's mother, his father, all of his siblings, of which one brother caught him in one of the slow dances, and made sure Jeremy could tell he was interested in having sex with him. Jeremy probably would, at some time while they stayed here. He was as tall as Gral, a little leaner, and could rival him in nibbling his ears. "You should have warned me about this," he told Gral, when he joined him, carrying a tall glass of the alcoholic beverage his father had made, with the fruits he grew on his land. It reminded Jeremy of the fruit punches his grand mother would make for summer activities, but the taste was much more bright, and the slight alcohol in it just enhanced it. "I didn't want to give you a chance to plan your escape." "Do you guys do this often?" "This large of a gathering? No, only when all the space faring members manage to make it back at the same time. Otherwise, it's just a small affair." "It can't have been easy to arranged." "It wasn't. We've been working on this since our trip to Earth. "A year? And you never told me?" "I wanted to surprise you." Gral said smiling. "Well, as you saw when we got here, you managed it." When they had arrived on the property Jeremy had been smothered by the crowd of family members wanting to hug him, lick him, nibble on him. "Well, all of this, is because of you. Everyone has been wanting to meet you." "I have to say, your family is very welcoming." "No more than any other." "What's your brother's name? The one that looks a lot like you, just leaner." Jeremy pointed him out of the crowd. "That's Roumalger, you want his full name?" Gral asked mischievously." "No," Jeremy answered with a laugh, "I'd have forgotten that by the time I have sex with him. But I have to tell you. You're going to have to work on your ear nibbling, I think he might just manage to steal me away from you with his." "Oh really?" Gral pulled Jeremy against him, and closed his muzzle on his ear, licking along the edge, sending a shiver of pleasure down his spine. When Jeremy was panting and moaning, Gral started nibbling. When he finally stopped, Jeremy had to catch his breath, then look at his chrono, to find out twenty minute had passed. He leaned back against his Heart, and looked at Thuruk, Asarin, and their new cub, sitting at a table, and feeding her. "You forgot to mention that yours and Thuruk's family were close." A third of the people were Thuruk's family. "All the families in the valley are close, but we're the only two with spacefarers. Everyone else just works groundside." Jeremy nodded, and was silent, watching Thuruk and his family. "Have you ever though about having a family?" he asked. "I have a family," Gral replied, muzzling the top of his head. "I mean starting your own, having cubs." Gral didn't reply immediately "I did, but I never really found the time to look for a female." "Found the time?" Jeremy asked, turning and looking at him, disbelieving. "Gralgiranselhelrarvnir. You don't *find* the time to look for someone, you *make* the time. I swear, you're lucky I walked onto your ship, I don't think you'd have found me otherwise." Gral pulled him against him and ruffled Jeremy's hair. "I would have hunted you on that station of yours. Actually, if I remember correctly, I did just that." Jeremy smiled, and relaxed against him, watching the family in the distance. "Do you want a family?" Gral asked cautiously, after a long silence. This time it was Jeremy who took his time responding. "Yes, I do. I look at them, I see how happy they are, and I think that we have so much happiness, that we should be sharing it with a cub." "Tomorrow, we can start looking for a female we both like. We'll have to stay closer to Kelser until the birth, but That wouldn't be a problem." "I was thinking of a lost cub." "A lost cub?' "Yeah, I've been reading about them, there's a lot of them, who lost their families in accidents, we could save one of them, bring him, or her, in our family." Jeremy's voice became soft. "I want to give one of them, what you gave me, a chance to be happy again." "I never thought about that," Gral said, "but you're right, it would be appropriate." They were pensive for some time after that, until three of Gral's siblings came to pull them back in to the dance. * * * * * Jeremy enjoyed the quiet house. After the hustle of the previous night, with all the guest, some peace was appreciated. He made his way to the kitchen, and put the case on the counter. He started water boiling, and took out the tools from the case. He could get all of this done in a machine, and back on the ship, it was often how he did it, but for the first one of the day, he enjoyed the ritual. He activated the gravitic anchor at the base of the mortal so it wouldn't move, placed the pestle next to it, and then measured enough beans for two cups. Grounding the beans by hand and releasing the aromas was how he liked to start his day. He was engrossed in the process, taking his time, and watching to make sure he didn't grind them too fine, when arms wrapped around his waist. "I knew I felt you leave the bed," was whispered in his ear, before it was gently nibbled on. Jeremy shivered. "Sorry if I woke you." "Don't be sorry for waking me, be sorry for leaving me alone." The hands rubs his chest, and his neck was licked. "I thought you'd want to sleep longer, we were up fairly late." "I don't recall either one of us being up. We were in bed, if my memory serves me." He paused and sniffed the air. "What are you doing?" "I grinding coffee beans." "That smells very nice." "Roumalgergravnilamir," a female said sharply, "go put some pants on, we have guests." "Yes mom," Roumalger replied, and then licked the back of Jeremy's neck, making him shiver. "I'll be right back," he whispered, and then left. "Good morning, Parkiler," Jeremy said, and Gral and Roumalger's mother joined him at the counter. "And a good morning to you, Jeremy. What are you doing?" she bent down to breath in the aroma. "I'm preparing coffee." He took out two cups, placed a dripper on each of them. He divided the ground coffee evenly, and put that in the bottom part. "I've never heard of it." "It's a human drink. Coffee is a plant grown on earth and most of their colonies." The water was boiling, so he poured it in the top part of the drippers. "I did you get a human product? I thought we weren't trading with them until they stopped persecuting some of their people." "I know someone," Jeremy replied with a smile. The water as done dripping to he took off the dripper some a cup, and picked up to inhale the aroma. "You know someone who can get you an illegal product. Maybe I should inform your captain of that." "And lose my only supplier?" Gral said, as he entered, "I don't think so." He nuzzled his mother, and then kissed Jeremy. "What did you just do?" Parkiler asked, head tilted. Gral took the other cup. "We kissed." He took a sip of his coffee. "Kissed?" "It's a human custom that we've adopted, took some trial and error, but we found a way to make it work," Gral said. Jeremy was starting to turn red. "Really?" she said, "you're going to have to show me how it's done." "I don't think so," Gral replied, "it's ours, and ours alone." He grinned at his mother. "Is it true that you only have sex with males?" she asked Jeremy. He stopped moving, cup to his lips, and looked at her over it. "Yes, it is." "Is that a common behavior among humans?" "I'm not sure I'm the right person to ask," he replied, "why are you even asking about that?" He paused. "Right, you do socio-psychological research. If you want to answer that question, you should speak to one of them, instead of me. I don't know if you could trust their answers, considering they still don't acknowledge that they have males who have sex with males." "Maybe I can get one of the ambassadors to do some research on this for me." Gral's father entered the kitchen. "I thought I heard voices." "Morning Dad," Gral replied. "Morning dear," his mate said. "Good morning Marse . . . Dad," Jeremy said, definitely not used to calling him that. Marseforderiven nuzzled everyone in turn. "What is it you're holding?" "It's coffee," Gral said, handing him the cup. "It's a human drink." Marsef smelled it, and then took a swallow. He made a face "it's very bitter." "I know," Gral said, smiling. "It's invigorating." "You drink this a lot?" his mother asked. "No, just a cup in the morning, Jeremy drinks it through out the day." "It's flavors are interesting," Marsef said. "I wonder how well I could grow it here." "Dear, it's a human plant. It' be illegal for you to grow it." "It would just be for me, an experiment, if you will, there wouldn't be any harm." He looked at Gral. "I can't give my approval, you know that dad." He nodded toward Jeremy, "But if you were to manage to get yourself a plant, without my knowledge, there isn't much I could do about that, could I?" Jeremy looked from the father to the son. "I'll talk to my contact, see what he can do about it, but you're going to have to do your own research on how to grow them, I have no idea how that's done."
  3. 1 point
    "Are you sure you want to do this?" Gral asked. "Yeah, I am," Jeremy replied. "It's time for this. Like I told my mom, I'm never coming back to earth, so it doesn't matter if I'm never going to be able to speak English correctly. I can't continue to ask every new crew member we get to learn English just so they can understand me. I understand Kelsirian perfectly, it's about time I was able to speak it." "Modifying your voice box, that's a pretty big thing." "I know, but Gariel assured me that it's a simple procedure." "It's perfectly safe," she said entering the medical room. "I've had to perform this kind of reconstruction often when I worked groundside. They worst you can expect, is having to be silent while it heals, and then have to learn your pronunciation. It's going to be like being back to a Learning Center, all over again." "I have no idea what that is," Jeremy said, with a chuckle. "Where do humans go to learn the basics of language?" "We learn that at home, with our family, growing up. Don't you?" "Yes," she said obviously realizing she'd gone for the wrong analogy. "Well, it's going to feel like you are learning to hunt, when you thought you already knew how."
  4. 1 point
    Jeremy panted, looking into Alix's eyes. The male's legs were wrapped around Jeremy's waist, preventing him from pulling out as they both came down from their orgasm. Jeremy straighten up, smiling down at his partner. "This just keeps getting better." Alix continued holding him inside him. From that first time, only a few months ago, Jeremy had realized that Alix liked looking up at him, like this. Every few days since then they had sex together, usually in the bed Alix had in the office, and it almost always ended with Jeremy kneeling between his legs, held in this position for long moments afterward. Alix smiled back at him, but his eyes weren't as jovial as he'd expected. "Is everything alright?" Jeremy asked. "Everything's fine," Alix replied, but again, Jeremy could tell he was keeping something back. "How are the humans doing?" "Humans? How would I know how they are doing?" "Don't you go see them?" Jeremy rolled his eyes. "No. As far as I'm concerned, we're wasting time sending them to the incarceration colony. We should just space them." "Did they reveal who sent them?" Jeremy tilted his head. "Again, I don't care. I know who sent them. The fact they wont admit it doesn't change that. Alix, what's wrong?" Alix was quiet. Jeremy ran his hands through the male's leg fur. "Please, talk to me." "Nothing's wrong, not really. I'm just going to miss this; engineering, you, the ship." He untangled his legs, but Jeremy didn't move. "What do you mean, you're going to miss this?" Alix pulled himself away, and turned so he was leaning against the wall. "I'm leaving. When we get to FarSpace station, I'm going to hop on a freighter heading back to Kelser." Jeremy looked at him, stunned. "You can't leave. Who's going to be in charge here?" Alix looked at him, smiling, and this time there was mirth in his eyes. "You are." "Me? I can't be in charge, I'm just your assistant." "My assistant?" Alix laughed. "Is that what you thought you were?" "Well, yes. I followed you around, doing the work you told me to, the way to told me to do it." "I don't have assistants. As far as I'm concerned, they are just a waste of space. You were my apprentice." "What?" Alix nodded, pulled Jeremy close, and leaned against him. "I have to admit, when you first told me you want me to teach you, I figured I'd show you enough so you could do tech work and leave it at that, but you are a good engineer. I know I didn't say it, back then, but you did do good work with the repairs, especially considering you weren't familiar with our technology. "When I decided you were too talented to be limited to a tech, I knew eventually you'd take over for me here. You've been ready for a while now, but I've been postponing it - Easy to do when we're nowhere near a way to get back home." He nuzzled Jeremy. "The sex with you has made it difficult for me to reach this decision." "Then why leave? We can both be in charge. I don't want to kick you out." "You're not. It's my decision. It's time for me to go back home. I've been in space over twenty years, with nothing more than the occasional stopover at Kelser. I miss seeing the sky, and it's time for me to start my own hunt." "Your hunt? For what?" "For my Heart. I love it here, but it's out there, somewhere. And I long to find it. Engineering is going to be in your hands now, good hands, so I can leave in peace." Jeremy didn't know what to say, so he wrapped an arm around Alix's shoulders, and held him close.
  5. 1 point
    "Jeremy," the com said, as he was under panels, rebuilding them. "Here." "I have a signal here, all the way from human territory. He wants to talk to you." "I'm in the middle of something. Get the information and I'll contacted them when I'm not busy." "He says it's important," the com came back, after an extended silence, "and that he's your brother." Jeremy stopped. "My brother?" "Yes. Do you still want me to take the information?" "No," he answered, after thinking it over. "Send it to the terminal in my engineering office." He pulled himself out and cleaned his hands on his way to the office. He sat and took the call. "Byron," he said once his brother's face was visible. The image was clear enough that Jeremy could see the worry lines age had traces on his face. He was paying top money to talk to him. "Look. Dad didn't want you to know, but even though I don't approve of . . . Some of the choices you've made in your life. You have a right to know that mom is dying." "What? How?" "They found a tumor in her neck." "Can't they operate?" "It's right against the spine. They said that if they try, the odds are very high it's going to kill her. If they don't do anything, she has about one year. She decided to take the year. . . . Dad's pissed about that." "Tell her I'm coming.' "What? No! I didn't tell you so you could show up here and remind her of what you did to us. I just wanted you to know" "I didn't do a damn thing to you, Byron. And I don't care why you you told me. Now that I know, I am going to go say goodbye in person. I'm asking you to tell her I'm coming. I don't know how long it's going to take, but I will be there. Tell her to hang on." He didn't wait for Byron's reply. He cut the communication and rushed out of the office. "Bridge," he said in his hand com "Here. "Where's Gral." "I'm here," Gral answered. "What's wrong?" "I'm on my way. I'll tell you there." "Jeremy, tell . . ." Jeremy shoved the com unit in his pocket. * * * * * When he entered the bridge Gral was pacing. "What's wrong?" The captain said. "Why didn't you tell me over the com?" "I didn't want to discuss this over wave." Gral stopped moving and looked at him, worried. He took a cautious step toward him. "What's going on?" he inquired. "I need to go to Earth, right now." Gral gently placed a hand on his shoulder. "Talk to me Jeremy, you're worrying me." Jeremy finally looked him in the eyes. "My mother's dying. She has maybe one year to live." Gral's eyes went wide, and pulled him tightly against him. "I know you guys can't go back there, after the last time, but I have to go. I don't care what I need to do to get there. I can't let her die without saying goodbye." "Oh, little warrior. Of course you will say goodbye." He kissed the top of Jeremy's head, and then let go of him. "Anyl, contact the ships along our patrol, I'm calling on Family Law, and they are going to have to cover our route until the council sends someone to take over." "Yes sir." "Toom, contact the council to have them send a ship to replace us, and tell them we need passage to Earth." "Family Law, yes captain." "Once you've done that, check with your contacts in the back rooms, We need to make it there, and like Jeremy said, I don't care how." * * * * * The station they were approaching was one Jeremy had never seen. Its building had started the year he joined Gral's family, eight years ago. Behind it, Earth could be seen. Jeremy's heart caught in his throat. Seeing it again, after all these years gave him a pang of homesickness. He'd renounced his human citizenship, and he hadn't thought he'd ever be back here, let alone want to be here. He'd started thinking of himself as kelsirian over the last few years, but he still knew that this ball of rock was where he was from, and it still called to him. "Unknown kelsirian ship," a voice sounded forcefully though the com system. "You have entered Human space in violation of the Krommer treaty. Come to a full stop or you will be shot down." "Entered human space?" Toom asked aloud, "what have we been doing those last hundred or so light year since we crossed into their territories?" "They're asserting their authority, now that we are somewhere that gives them the firepower to enforce it. Come to a full stop" Gral said. "I'd like to see them try." "We're not here to start trouble. Now be quiet." He nodded to the communication officer. "This is Gral, captain of the viper's Bane. I am calling on Family law. My government has lodge a petition to allow us to be here, and it has been approved. I have a crew member with a dying family member on your planet." "There must be a mistake, captain," the reply came after a moment. "There are no kelsirians on earth." "My Heart is human. His mother is dying. I repeat that a petition for him to visit her has been approved by your government." "You are correct. He is approved for a twelve Earth hour visit. We will dispatch a shuttle to bring him to the spaceport." "We don't need a shuttle. We'll provide the transport to him and his escort ourselves." "That's a negative on the escort. He is to be on his own." Gral snorted. "Sorry, but no. Each time my Heart has been around humans without an escort, attempts on him have happened. While he's more than able to handle whom ever your government might send to intercept him, I'm not going to just hand him over." "Fine. He can be escorted by one person." "Six." "What? I can't let that many of you on planet." There was silence. Gral looked at Jeremy and then around. It was becoming obvious that the human wasn't going to make a contour offer unprompted. "Very well, I will not accept one, you will not accept six. How many are you willing to accept?" There was another silence. "Four?" came the tentative reply. "That is acceptable." Toom ran out of the room. "They will be unarmed." Gral considered this request. To go down without weapons left them at a disadvantage, but would humans really attempt anything with the ship in orbit? "Very well," he said. "Once your shuttle is on its way, you'll be given the landing pad assigned to you." The communication was terminated. "Toom, when the three of you suit up, make sure you are armored against solid slug weapons, on top of energy." "In all these years," Jeremy said, "didn't I ever mentioned that humans don't haggle?" "I don't think you have." * * * * * Jeremy took shallow breaths as he exited the shuttle, and then deeper ones when the air smelled cleaner than he remembered. They stepped through the detector that had been setup at the bottom of the steps leading down from the landing pad. The security there seemed surprised when none of them triggered an alarm. Of all of them, the only one that had been reluctant to leave something behind was Jeremy. He was used to wearing his clawed cloves when he left the ship, and felt uneasy without them. "We have a transport ready to take you to your mother's house," the agent said, and pointed to it. Jeremy hesitated as he noticed that, while a larger vehicle, with their larger frames, the Kelsirians would still be tightly packed and make defending themselves difficult. He headed to it, and the others followed. They couldn't walk to the house, his parents lived outside the city, and he didn't have earth currencies anymore, so he couldn't hire is own transport. * * * * * His childhood house had barely changed since it's left Earth. The paint on it looked to be fresh, but it was the same color he remembered. "When do you want me to come back?" their driver asked. "Don't go anywhere. I won't be here long." Jeremy walked to the door, four kelsirians close behind him, Gral the closest, and knocked on the door. "I'll get it!" a woman said, and Jeremy couldn't help smile as he recognized the voice of his older sister. The door opened and an adult woman with graying hard stood before him. His smile dropped, she was only six years older than him she couldn't be graying already. "What can I do for you?" she asked, and they looked at him, and the kelsirian behind him. "Hi Beth," he said. "Jeremy? What are you doing here?" "I'm here to say goodbye to mom." "What? How did you . . .? Byron!" She stormed off. Yelling after their brother. Since she didn't close the door, Jeremy shrugged and entered the house. The door opened to the living room, where Marcus, his younger brother, by ten years was sitting on the couch. He lifted his head on seeing him and then stood abruptly. Gral ordered the others to stay by the door, and followed Jeremy toward the stairs leading upstairs. "What the fuck do you think you're doing here?" a gruff voice said, and his father entered from the dining room. "Hi to you too dad. I'm here to see mom." "Like hell you are. It's your fault she fell sick. You abandoned her to go with those furballs." "Dad, before you go insulting my friends, I hope you remember Gral, you met him on the station, when you forced us here with your fabricated story. He's my captain, as well as my Heart, my husband. The others are three of my best friends." "Do you fuck them too?" "Yes, I do. They're also very good warriors, they don't understand English, so they might over react if they think you're threatening me." His father looked at them and then at Jeremy. His eyes narrowed, and his face reddened. With a huff he turned and went back to the dining room. Jeremy turned to the stairs again, and this time Marcus was in his way. His younger brother spat at his feet. "Dad's right. It's your fault mom's dying. If you weren't a pervert we could have gotten the best care for mom, and she wouldn't be in this condition." Jeremy sighed. "Marcus, I have very little patience left for this family. You can thank dad for that. So you're going to get out of my way, or I'm going to throw you across the room." The cold look that accompanied his words left no doubt as to his seriousness, and Marcus got out of his way. He went up the stairs, and to his parents' room. He pushed the door opened slightly and looked at her, lying on the bed. She was very thin, and pale. He stepped in, and sat on the chair by her side. He looked around, wondering where the medical sensors and other machines, to see to her health were. He placed a hand on her brow and it felt hot. He saw the bowl of water on the night stand with the towel. He wet it and applied it to her head. She stirred and opened her eyes. She looked at him, unfocused, closed her eyes, and opened them again. "Jeremy?" she asked when she finally focused on him. "Hi mom." "Oh Jeremy, you came. Byron said you would. I'm so happy you came." "How are you doing? Where's all the equipment to look after you?" She looked around. "Oh, I don't needed it. I'm perfectly fine." "Mom, how come you don't have any support? Where's the nurse?" "They told me that if I called you a traitor, they would give me the best treatment. They wanted me to denounce you, to renounce you as my flesh and blood. I couldn't do that. And I told them as much." "And because of that," Marcus said, form the doorway, "she's not getting anything. They found a bunch of loopholes to disqualify her from everything. I hope you're happy." "Watch your tone, young man. I won't have you talk to your brother that way." "I'm sorry mom. I didn't know they would go this far," He was just one man, why was the human government so set on making him pay for being happy? "Don't ever be sorry. You have nothing to be sorry. I'm the one who should be apologizing to you. I should never let those doctors do those horrible things to you, but I was so afraid, they told us that if they didn't, you would get worse that you might die horribly. I thought we were helping you." Jeremy too her hands in his to try and calm her. "Mom, it's okay. It's in the past, and you though you were helping. But now I need you to help yourself. When I leave, I want you to renounce me." She shook her head. "Tell them you kicked me out, that you never want to see me again." "I can't do that you're my child, I'm suppose to protect you, to look after you." "You did mom. But now it's time for you to look after your other children. I have my own family now." He looked up at Gral, who placed a hand on his shoulder. "They look out for me, they love me. When I leave here, I'm going back to them, and I won't ever be back in human space. So I won't hear those word you'll say. You have to say them so you can get better. You still have children to look after." His mother look above him, to Gral. "Do you love him?" "More than I can put in words," he answered. "I will always be with him, love him, protect him. He is my Heart, and I am His. Not even the Gods will tear us apart." She smiled. "Alright, I'll do it." She closed her eyes, and her breathing calmed. Jeremy kissed her forehead and stood. "Don't think this changes anything. You're still a pervert." "Marcus, don't push your luck. She's asleep now. I can probably throw you down these stairs without waking her." * * * * * The transport dropped them off by the ramp to their pad, and then left. There wasn't any security waiting for them. "How much time do we have left?" "We're only been on planet a little more than three hours." Thuruk said. "Do we have anything of value we can trade?" "Depends," Toom said. "What would humans want?" "Here, the best bet would be precious metals or gems, something they can get easily exchanged for cash" "I though you said humans don't trade," Gral commented. "They trade, it's haggling they don't do." "I don't have anything," Toom said. "Me neighter," Thuruk said. Gral shook his head. "I have a couple of gold nuggets left over from the mission on Cresting," Houlin said Toom eyed him. "You went to that market?" "They have nice stuff there." "Right, nice stuff," thuruk said, miming sniffing something off a table. "Can I have the smaller of the two?" Jeremy asked Houlin. Houlin handed it to him. "We should be going back to the ship," Gral said. "I know, but this is the last time I'll be here, and I'd like to have a good Scotch, one last time." He started for the bar. * * * * * The barman had easily agreed to give him five tumblers of his best Scotch for the gold nugget, and he took them back to the table they others were sitting at. They attracted attention, but no one bothered them. "This isn't brougtfal, Scotch is made to be savored, so drink it very slowly." Toom sniffed it, then took a small swallow, a moment later he was coughing. They others eyes him and then their drinks. Jeremy took a swallow, rolling it on his tongue, and had to work at not reacting to the burning, as it went down his throat. He couldn't keep his eyes from tearing up. It had been a long time since he'd had anything this strong. Kelsirian alcohol was more about flavor, rather than strength. He had been enjoying his drink for a few minutes, the others taking very tentative sips of theirs, when Toom, and Houlin stiffened up. They made the other turn and look in the same direction as them. Two humans were walking directly towards them. They were all on alert when they reached them. "Can, can we join you?" the taller of the two said. He had brown hair, cut short and ha lanky build under his jacket and pleated pants. The other was ahead shorter, blond hair and a slightly stockier build. They both had a silver leaf pin at their lapel. Gral nodded. "Please keep your hands on the table." This surprised them, but they complied, pulling in a chair each and keeping their hands visible as they sat. "I'm very happy we've been able to catch you before you left. You have no idea how long we've been looking forward to meeting you." They were looking at Jeremy. "Who are you?" he asked. "I'm Patrick," the taller one said, "this is Louis, we're . . .." They discreetly looked around, before grasping each other's hands. "We're lovers." Jeremy sat straighter. "I was under the impression Earth had no males who loved other males," Gral said. "The government's trying very hard to catch any of us who shows signs, and treat us for them, but some of us are more resistant to it, while others just manage to remain undetected." "Why tell us?" Gral asked. "Because, you have no idea how much of an impact you've made on us, Jeremy. They've tried to keep what you did hidden, but the stories have been circulating, and our numbers have grown in the last years. We now have people in positions that can have an impact on the government. We have a plan in the works, it's going to take time, but when it comes to fruition, we will need your help." "I won't blindly promise you assistance." "I understand." He reached for his lapel, and claws were extended, making him detach the pin very slowly, and put it on the table. "Keep an eye out for this. It's our symbol. You will be seeing it in the future." "How are you making it work?" Jeremy asked. "It can't be easy." "It isn't. This is the first time we're seen each other in two years." Patrick said "I work on the moon, and he's on Armstrong L1 station. We have to keep our distances. We're both engineers, so every few years we're at the same convention, and we get to catch up. This was a special occasion, because of your presence here." "And dangerous." Patrick nodded toward the door, where two uniformed officers entered. "We have to go. We'll be in touch." They left in different directions, and Houlin palmed the pin. A moment later the officers stood by their table. They were the same gray uniform, and gloves. There were no identifying marks, and up close Jeremy noticed they also wore faceless masks. "How was the visit with your mother," the one of the left asked. "It was good. I think she's going to be getting better." "That's good to hear," the other said drylly. "Since the visit is done, you should head back to your ship. You wouldn't want to get in trouble here." "I have twelve hours. No even half that has passed." "That's correct, twelve hours to visit your mother, not loiter around, making the patrons nervous with your alien ways." Gral put a hand on Jeremy's arm. "We'll head back to the shuttle now," he said. "That is an excellent idea. Why don't we escort you, to make sure no one troubles you on your way."
  6. 1 point
    Jeremy walked around the core of the anti matter generator, testing the new junctions. Alix and him had installed them over the week, and he needed to make sure they were able to handle the energy levels. Satisfied everything was fine he stepped away, and almost tripped over his tool bag. He put his hand on the opposite wall to keep his balance, and immediately moved it away when he felt the heat. He looked at his hand, fully expecting it to be burnt. When it wasn't, he frowned, and looked at the large circuit. He moved his hand closer, and he felt heat radiating from it, but no where near as much as he thought there should be. He looked around, at all the similarly sized circuit along the wall that was the back of the console, on the outside of the generator. He touched the circuit, wondering at the heat again, for a moment, and then, realization hit him. How hadn't he realized before why they were this way, he'd noticed that the inside of the generator was warmer, but he'd never made the connection. Slightly dazed he exited the generator, and headed to the office. It was still early, so only a few techs were there. They said hi, but he didn't notice. He entered the office, and went to the window over looking engineering. Alix looked at him, said something, but Jeremy didn't hear. He looked out at he generator. "How did I manage to miss it for all these years?" "Miss what?" "I mean the design is amazing in and of itself, but the size, why make them so large? I could build one a eight of the size and it would be able to do the same job. Let me finish," Jeremy said when he saw Alix was about to object. "I could, but then I'd have to add heat sink material, and even with that I'd have to use a heat treated backing, because it would still get pretty hot. It's heat dispersement. Because they're so large, they don't over heat. Sure, it means your generator has to be larger over all, but I'm willing to bet it masses less. This is so fucking ingenious." He felt arms go around his waist, and Alix lean in against him. "You want to know why the generator's inside is so large? It's because we like to have space to move about. You're right about the circuit's design, but I can guaranty that the size of the generator came first." The were quiet for a time, then Alix nuzzled Jeremy's neck, before bitting it lightly. Jeremy gasped, in surprise. "What do you think you're doing?" He found he was panting slightly. Alix licked along his neck. "I heard you had sex with one of the ships pilot." "You heard that?" Jeremy found himself leaning back against the male, who licked his earlobe. Jeremy shivered pleasantly. "The whole ship heard about it. I also heard the humans even got to watch." "Not for long." Jeremy's breath was faster and shallower. "They didn't appreciate the sight." "Then they don't know a good thing when they see it," Alix whispered. He nibbled along the cartilage around the ear, and Jeremy moaned. "You asked what I was doing. I'm hoping to convince you to have sex with me." Jeremy had trouble thinking, He was slightly nervous, but he very much enjoyed what Alix was doing. Would Gral understand? Hadn't he said he was okay with this? Jeremy realized this would be a perfect chance to put it to the test. "How," he panted heavily. "How do you plan on convincing me?" Alix showed him, and Jeremy was convinced. * * * * * Jeremy stood before the door, trying to calm himself. He thought about his box for a moment, and then dismissed it. This was something he needed to work through, not bury. He was dressed again, but he was pretty sure he smelled of sex. He opened the door, and entered Gral's office. His Heart was nose deep in his pad, with two screens up. He didn't react to Jeremy entering. "I had sex with Alix," Jeremy said, and studied Gral's reaction. "Okay," he replied, no looking up. Jeremy stayed silent, still watching him. After a moment, Gral looked up. "Is everything alright?" Jeremy looked at his mate's face. He'd gotten quite good at reading it over the years they'd been together. "You're really not bothered by that, aren't you?" "Should I be?" "I don't know, I wasn't sure." Gral pushed his chair aways from his desk, and motioned Jeremy over. He sat Jeremy on his lap, sideways, and had him lean against his chest. "I told you." Jeremy silenced him with a finger on his lips. "I know. You don't have to repeat yourself. I guess I just had to prove it to myself. I won't pull something like this on you again, I promise." "You saw I was okay with you having sex with Toom." Gral rubbed Jeremy's stomach with a hand. "Yes, but that's Toom, you like him. You have sex with him. I guess one some level I thought you were okay with him because of that." Jeremy gasped as he felt Gral's hand fondling him. He hadn't noticed him slipping a hand inside his pants. "You are free to have sex with anyone you like. Gods, you're free to have sex with who ever is willing, if you ever find yourself in need, and no one you know is around." Gral stroked Jeremy's now hard cock, making him moan. "This, has nothing to do with my love for you. You find someone that interests you, if they're willing, you go and have sex with them. If you feel strongly enough about them, take them as a mate. That won't change how you feel toward me, or me toward you." Jeremy was panting, and moaning. "I . . . Know. I just need to get rid of this human idea that only exclusive one on one relationships work." He groaned. "If you keep that up, I'm going to throw you over your desk and fuck you silly." "Good," Gral replied. Moments later the floor was littered with items that had been on the desk, and they were both groaning.
  7. 1 point
    "How is he doing?" Gral asked. "Physically, he's healthy," Gariel, the head medic said, looking over the information on the datapad she was holding. "What ever they did to him, it didn't cause any physical damage." "What did they do to him?" "I don't know for certain, other than it affected him on a mental level." She pulled up an image of Jeremy's brain. "As you can see, he is extremely stressed, even while being unconscious. From what I'm seeing, I can tell you that he is afraid, but I can't tell you why. I recommend that a mentalist see to him, other than that, if the techs can work out what was done to him, we might be able to come up with a treatment. Other wise all we can do is hope that you rescued him before there was any permanent effects." "Thank you, Gariel." She put a hand on his arm. "Don't worry, he will get better." Gral wanted to nod, to agree with her, but she hadn't seen the fear in his little warrior. He had been terrified of him. "I'll go see what the techs have found out." * * * * * Gral looked at the pieces spread over the work table. "Have you figured out what they did to him?" He asked Thuruk. "They injected nightmares directly into his mind using this." He waved at the parts. "The work that went into building this is impressive, disconcerting, and terrifying. I can't imagine how they tested it to make sure it would do what they wanted it, and nothing else." He looked up. "Are we really going to let the people who built this into the federation?" "I can only hope the Gods will work against them. At least we aren't supporting them anymore. I can't see who in their right mind would support them either." Gral leaned back against the wall. "Do you know why I can't get close to him, while Saul was able to pick him up?" "They made you the center of his nightmares. I think they were trying to turn him against all of us, but because of how close he was to you, they wanted to make certain you would never be together." "Did they succeed?" he asked weakly. "Will I ever be able to hold him again?" "I don't know. They had him for hours, but not for as long as they wanted. The program they were running had hours to go before it concluded, so that's in Jeremy's favor, but I have no way to know how advanced it was on the part that dealt with you. I wasn't as gentle as I should have been when I took the processing center out of their machine. It was all I could do not to smash it." "I understand," Gral said. "I don't blame you, I blame them. I want to go back there and rip their heads off. Thank you for stopping me from killing them." "Just following your orders," Thuruk smiled, but it didn't hold. "How hard do you think they'll come down on us?" Gral shrugged. "There's no way to know. Jeremy's position on the crew and as my Heart is established, and no one's argued against him." "Would anyone contest it?" "I have enemies. If they can find a way to use that against me, they will. Gods, I hate politics." He headed to the door. "Keep working on it, send anything you find out to Gariel." * * * * * Jeremy walked through the corridor, greeting those he knew, and nodding to anyone he wasn't familiar with yet. He'd made this walk often over the last six month, and daily over the last two. Getting back on his feet after what had been done to him, hadn't taken long. Being able to move about among the kelsirians, let alone work with them took longer. It had been a month before he stopped looking for the exit each time there was more than two of them in the room with him. Another two before he didn't have to force himself not to jerk away each time one of them touched him, and another one to stop jumping each time someone he hadn't noticed appeared in his field of vision. Now, he was working on what he considered his last real obstacle. This time the shaking didn't start until he was standing in front of the door. He reached for the bell, and his stomach lurched. He pulled away and sighed, he'd try again tomorrow. He turned and headed for his quarters to get ready for work. He stopped when he saw who was buzzing his door. "Ambassador Querik?" The older kelsirian turned and looked at him. "Jeremy, it's so good to see you again, but it's just Querik. I'm not an ambassador for the time being." "What happened?" "Nothing, I just decided to take some time to focus on my family. With being posted on varying stations through the federation, I hardly got to see my mates." "You have more than one? Couldn't they go with you?" "Yes, two females and one male. If they weren't busy with their own careers they could, but they are successful in their on rights back home, so I decided to take a break and look after them for a while. I'm on my way home, actually, and I through I'd travel with you, since you're heading in that direction too." "I didn't know we were head to Kelser, I've been spending most of my time in engineering." "How are you adapting to being on the ship?" Jeremy eyes Querik. "I've been here for over two years. I'm pretty comfortable." "I'm glad to hear it. I worried that you'd miss your people." "I am with my people." "I'm glad you feel that way. I know the crew thinks of you as one of them." "Why are you really here?" "I'm here because I'm heading home, I swear." Jeremy eyed him again, obviously not quite believing him. "Since I haven't seen you since you first joined the crew, why don't you show me your favorite place on the ship?" "My favorite place?" "Yes, surely you have one, some place where you like to go to relax, where you don't have to concern yourself with what is going on outside." "I, I guess I do." "Show me." Jeremy took Querik to engineering. "This is your favorite place?" "Well, one of them, it's pretty high on the list. I'm comfortable here, I'm in my environment." "You have list?" "Yeah." "Why don't you show me another place on that list?" Jeremy took him to the mess hall, and then a few of the recreation rooms he liked going to, the one with the movies, the one with the games and the quiet one. All the while knowing that he wasn't doing what Querik had asked of him. Querik wanted to know what his favorite place was, not those close to the top of the list. He took a breathe to calm himself and headed across the ship. Querik followed him silently, until they stood in front of a door. Jeremy tried to reach for the buzzer twice. "What's here?" Querik asked. "You wanted to know where my favorite place was." He reached for the buzzer and pressed it. "Enter," the voice on the other side said, and the door opened. Jeremy started sweating on seeing Gral behind his desk. He wanted to run away, a voice at the back of his mind saying that this was the monster who had hurt him and stolen him from his family. He took a step forward. Gral looked up and stood on seeing who was in the doorway. "Jeremy? Are you okay?" He stepped around the desk and took a step toward him, but stopped. The voice was louder now. 'He's coming to hurt you. Run, run away.' Jeremy closed the distance between them and wrapped his arms around Gral, surprising him. The voice told him to move away, that he wasn't safe here. He only held on tighter. Gral gently wrapped his arms around him "This, this is my favorite place on the ship," Jeremy whispered. "Welcome back, my little warrior." "I'm sorry it took me so long, and I don't know if I'll be able to do more than this." "It's alright. If this is all I get, I'll be alive."
  8. 1 point
    Jeremy stood in the middle of the large room. It was featureless, except for the four mats on the floor, probably six meters on each sides, it was basically empty. He looked around again, he could see people walked by through the two doorways, but no one was paying him any attention. He wasn't sure what happened here, and if not for the message he received, telling him to come here, he didn't think he'd ever come here. "Hello Jeremy," someone said, startling him, and making him move away. It took him a moment to take hold of himself again. "I, I, I'm sorry, I didn't see you there," Jeremy stammered. She looked at him, tilting her head. "I'm Amigerlianfernel, I command gamma squad, and I am also a combat trainer." Jeremy nodded, his breathing slowly. "Okay, why did you want to see me?" She was a little shorter than him, with silver fur, spotted with black. "I'm not the one who requested this session. The captain did." She moved closer to Jeremy, and he found himself taking a step back. "I will not hurt you. Now that you are starting to feel more comfortable around us again, he has asked me to train you. It's been three months since your abduction, correct?" "A little more than that." She nodded. "Please come closer." "Look, I don't really need to learn how to fight. I'll just stay on the ship form now on." She motioned for him to come closer. After a moment of hesitation, he did. "You can not spend the rest of your life on the ship. Please show me your hand." Jeremy raised a hand to her. She took it and turned it over, examining it, and his fingers. "Since you don't have claws, I'll start by teaching you close fists techniques, until we can find something to correct this. have you even been in a fight?" Jeremy had to think back rather far. "When I was a kid, I think. I've never been one to look for fights." "That's good. A Hunter doesn't want to fight, but it's his duty to stand between the threat and the innocent." "I thought hunters were the name of a military unit." She looked at him. "Not here. The Hunters on the ship follow the ancient ways. For us, it is a way of life. It means I well never let someone be harmed. I will give my life to protect my people." "Isn't that a little extreme?" She shook her head. "The Hunter's creed is this : 'We are Hunters. We die so our people live.'" "I don't know if that's for me," Jeremy said. She smiled at him. "You're not being asked to become a Hunter. It isn't something anyone can be forced to be. Your mate wants you to be able to defend yourself should humans try to kidnap you again." Jeremy nodded, it wasn't an unreasonable request. He had no plans on dealing with humans again, but he couldn't know what was going to happen. He took a deep breath. "Okay, how are we going to do this?"
  9. 1 point
    Jeremy cautiously walked through the corridor. They'd told him it would be empty, but he couldn't get himself to trust them. He kept expecting to have one of them jump at him at every intersection. Walking up had been to go from one nightmare, to another; A sleeping one, to a waking one. As soon as he'd started panicking they left him alone. Once he'd calmed down, one of them entered the room, but stayed by the door. She was female, in charge of th medical bay. He'd met her before, but he couldn't remember her name. "How are you feeling?" she asked. He glared at her. "How do you think I feel? I want to get out of here. I want to go back to Earth. It's driving me insane! I know what they did to me, and I still want to go back." "Do you remember what was done to you on the station?" He shook his head. "I just remember being forced into a chair, then there's pain, hate, anger." "We are going to help you." She took a step toward him. "Stay away!" he tried to push himself tighter against the wall. "I'm a friend," she soothed. "I know that! But you're terrifying me!" She left the room then. The rest of the communications were done over com. Eventually they'd told him they couldn't keep him here, he needed to go back to his quarters. He couldn't go back there, that's where the monster was waiting for him. They'd made arrangement for new quarters, in one of the vacant habitation sectors. A ship like this was never at full occupancy, unless it was war time. Even if everyone were to bring their families with them, there would still be empty quarters. As it was, more than half the people on board either lived alone, or only with partners. That left a lot of empty quarters. As they had promised, the way to his quarters had been free of people, and he'd slowly made his way there. Once there he quickly entered, and closed the door behind him, only then able to breath again. He leaned back against the door, and slowly slumped to the floor, crying. He wanted Gral to hold him, to comfort him, but Gral was the monster out to hurt him. He screamed, holding his head. He couldn't reconciled both thoughts. They had done something to his mind, twisted it to the point where he didn't know if he could trust anything he thought. He couldn't even summon the box to help him. When he tried, he felt it, just out of reach, but it wouldn't appear. After a time, his mind calmed down, out of sheer exhaustion. He stayed there, catching his breath, then stood. He would get over this, somehow. The first step was to settle in. On the desk were a few piece of clothing, and two large sacs. He had no idea what they were, until he went closer to them, and the aroma reached him. The rich scent calmed him. There was a datapad on the top sac. He took it and turned it on. "I know this isn't going to make up for what was done to you, but hopefully, it will help sooth you. Xenial." Jeremy put his face against the sac and breathed in deeply. Coffee. Xenial had finally be able to find him coffee. He had to make himself a cup, right now. He looked around. These quarters had a cooking area, since he wouldn't be able to go to the mess to eat, but it hadn't been supplied yet. He hadn't had coffee in years now, and yet he could feel the craving coming back. He really needed a cup of coffee. He looked at the door. He'd have to brave the outside to get what he needed. He couldn't move, his craving warring with is fear. Then he realized he didn't have to go outside. He took the pad, wrote up the list of what he needed, and sent it to Xenial. Then he put away the clothing and sat down to wait. He jumped when the door buzzed. He went to it, and his hand hovered over the unlock button. "Who's there!" he yelled, knowing sound didn't carry well through the door. "It's Xenial," came the muffled reply. "I have the things you asked for. Jeremy looked at the button again, trying to decide, just how badly he needed them. His hand fell away, and he rested his head against the door. "Can you put them down! And leave!" he tried to catch his breath. "Please!" He was crying again. "Okay," Xenial said, and then added. "We're here for you Jeremy. I'm leaving now." Jeremy hated this. He slammed his fist against the door, over and over. They were his friend. They were the ones who had taken him, accepted him, even with his differences. They hadn't questioned his motives, they hadn't regarded him with suspicions, they had accepted him. Humans were monsters for making him afraid of his family. He waited for a full five minutes before opening the door. He had to glance on each side, before he could step out to take the box, and bring it in. He put it on the table, and pickup up the pad. "I'm sorry," he sent. "We will wait for you," came the reply. Jeremy fought the tears, He wasn't going to cry again, he promised himself. Never again would humans make him cry. He took a moment to compose himself, and then set about making the first coffee of his new life.
  10. 1 point
    Jeremy turned into the recreation room, to cut through it, and immediately turned back with a quick 'sorry' on noticing the two bodies lying on the couch and thrusting against each other. He'd gone twenty steps or so, when he stopped, shaking his head. Going around would add twenty minutes to his trip to engineering, that's why he liked cutting through that room. And it wasn't like they would mind. He'd noticed fairly quickly just how casual kelsirians were with sex, and he should really get with the program. He turned around and headed back. He did his best not to looked at them, but he found himself slowing just enough to notice that it was a male and a female, the male had black, white, and orange fur, the female had solid sandy fur. She was under him, and what ever he was doing to her had her screaming in delight. Jeremy swallowed, and looked at an empty couch as he walked by it. What would it be like for him and Gral to have sex in a public place like this? His pulse quickened and he started sweating at the idea. He shook his head. No, at least, not now. Probably not any time soon. Sex in public was a little too much. * * * * * He'd mostly calmed down by the time he reached the engineering office. He entered, and Alix was already seated and working on something. Jeremy went behind him and looked at the screen. Alix was running theoretical stress against he components, and seeing when they broke. Alix sniffed the air, and turned to look at Jeremy. "Someone's excited this morning." He stood. "What do you mean?" Alix moved in close and breathed in Jeremy's sent. "You smell like you could do with some release." He gave him a smile, that made Jeremy take a step back. "Release? Oh, no, I just wanted in on a couple errr . . . having sex in one the recreation room I cut through. It sort of sent my mind wondering about somethings . . ." Alix nodded. "We can have sex here, and get it out of your system. I have a bed in the back." Jeremy's eyes went wide. "Ah, no. No. I'm with Gral." Alix tilted his head to the side, and ran a finger along Jeremy' cheek. "That's too bad." He stepped back. "Do you want to go find your mate to take care of that, and come back later?" "What? No, I'm here to work." Alix eyed him. "You current state won't distract you too much?" "It won't distract me at all," Jeremy stated. "Alright, then grab your tools. We're going to level three on the port side, we need to test the power conduits on sector two through ten. It shouldn't take more than a couple of hours. After that you can go have sex with your mate." "I really don't have to," Jeremy mumbled, blushing, "I can wait until after work." Alix pulled a tool bag out of a locker. "Why wait? Have your fun, grab a shower and get back to work. Are humans so obsessed with working they forgo simple pleasures?" Jeremy didn't reply immediately, taking his own tool bag out. "I guess we are," he finally admitted. Alix shook his head and placed an arm around Jeremy's shoulders. "We are going to have to do something about that. Yes, there are time when work has to take precedence, but it shouldn't be all the time. Emergencies are stressful enough without turning every day of work into something stress filled." Jeremy looked at the kelsirian. "Just how do you get anything done, with that mindset?" "It's called having a balanced life. You work, you rest, you have some good times with people you like." He patted Jeremy's rump and brought his arm back on his shoulder. "Too much of any of them, an you get in trouble. Just ask your mate to help you, I'm sure he'll be happy to make sure you have enough sex." Jeremy found himself blushing again, as the image of him and Gral, naked, on that couch popped back in his mind.
  11. 1 point
    Jeremy was in the Engineering office with Thuruk, Danil, Hosmelt and Jufdet, talking after their shift, when the kelsirian entered. He was about Jeremy's height, gold fur with black stripes, and with a leg in a brace. He looked around, scolding. "Alix!" Thuruk exclaimed, and everyone stood. "You're out of med bay." Jeremy looked at the other four, and stood too. Alix grunted, and stepped to the window looking out onto engineering. He looked down at the techs working there, and then moved to the terminal. He entered a few commands, looked at the results, and then at Jeremy. Jeremy extended a hand. "Hi. I'm Jeremy. I did the repairs on th generator." The kelsirian snorted, and looked back at the screen, entering more commands. Surprised at the gesture, Jeremy looked at his friends, who all wore a worried look. "What did you do to my generator?" Alix demanded. "I repaired it." "You call that repairing? We're not even getting eighty percent of the normal output." "Excuse me?" Jeremy glared at him, "but when I started working on it I didn't know how it was built. I had to learn as I went." "It shows," Alix said with derision. "What the hell is that suppose to mean?" Jeremy couldn't believe the gall of him. "You should be thanking me." "Thanking you? For what? The botched work you call repairs" "Hey! I did the fucking best I could. I'm not the one who blew the thing up. You should be thanking me. If it wasn't for my work we'd still be limping along." Alix glared at him. Thuruk grabbed Jeremy by the arm, and pulled him toward the door. "We'll leave you to it, Alix. Our work's done, so we're off to eat." Alix grunted and turned back to the screens. They walked in silence for a moment, Jeremy fuming. How could that guy call his work botched. It worked fine. So what if it wasn't up to a hundred percent yet. He'd have gotten it there in time. "You have to forgive Alix," Hosmlet said. "He always gets cranky when someone else works on his generator." Jeremy stopped in his track. "Do you remember how it got when they did the refit, two years ago?" Thuruk said. "Gods," Danil answered, laughing. "He was fuming the entire time, always getting under foot, telling them how to do their job. If the captain hadn't forced him off the ship, I'm sure someone would have decked him." How could he have done that? Jeremy asked himself, he couldn't believe that he'd lost his temper, like that. "Jeremy, are you okay?" Thuruk said, once he realized they had left him behind. "You guys go ahead," Jeremy said, turning around. "I'll join you. I have to do something first." He walked back to the engineering office, without waiting for their reply. He almost opened the door when he reached it, but stopped himself. Instead, he buzzed it. "Come in," Alix said, and Jeremy entered. The kelsirian looked at him, frowned and went back to the screen. "What do you want?" "I'm sorry I lost my temper." Jeremy said, and Alix looked at him, tilting his head after a moment. "It's your generator, you have the right to judge the quality of the work as you see fit." Alix studied him for a moment. "I accept your apology. Is there anything else?" "I'd like to learn from you." Alix crossed his arms over his chest, and leaned back against the console. "Don't you mean, you want a chance to show me just how much better your human way of doing thing is over mine?" Jeremy opened his mouth to protest, then closed it, realizing that at the back of his mind had been that exact hope. "I thought so." He turned his back to Jeremy. "I do want to learn," Jeremy stated. "I want to be useful on the ship, and for that I need to know how things work." "You're the captain's mate. You don't need to do anything on the ship." Jeremy gritted his teeth. "I'm not some freeloader. I'm an engineer. I know I don't know how your systems work, but if you teach me, I can be useful." Alix looked over his shoulder, doubt on his face. "So you're going to be happy being one of the tech?" "If I can help, yes. I'm not afraid of work." Alix looked at the screen again, entered some information, nodded at the result. "Be here first thing tomorrow morning." * * * * * Jeremy put different types of meat on a plate, and added that to his tray that already contained a bowl with vegetables, then poured some hot liquid that smelled spicy, in a cup. With that he joined his friends. He was still trying a variety of the food they served. He'd tried enough of the meats to believe he would enjoy all of them, so long as the sauce they were prepared in wasn't too sweet, or too spicy. He was amazed at how varied the taste of the foods were. The fruits and vegetables were also all palatable, so long as they were on their own. Kelsirians had a very different idea of what deserts should taste like from him. He wouldn't say the baked good made with fruits were bad, but when they would mostly savory, instead of sweet, that was too much for him, so he stayed away from them. The one thing still hadn't found to his liking, was the selection of hot drinks. He missed coffee. "What's wrong with this one?" Thuruk asked, seeing the face Jeremy made. "I don't like the spice." Thuruk took the cup and had a sip. "Areeze, with a bit of Granom and Junn. Not my kind of thing either." Jufdet lifted his cup. "I love the stuff." "I wish you guys had coffee." "What's that?" Hosmelt asked. "A human drink," Thuruk replied. "It's quite bitter, has a hint of Junn and maybe dried Hildes leaves, and other tastes I couldn't place." The three other kelsirians stared at him. "Jeremy brought himself some while we were at the station, and I had a taste." "You can probably get one of the cook to make something like that," Hosmelt commented. "Might take some time to get it right, though." "I doubt it would ever be right," Jeremy sighed. "I wish I'd been able to bring some, I could brew it myself." "Then just order some," Hosmelt said, before spearing some meat with a claw and popping it in his mouth. "Somehow I doubt we'd be able to buy any," Danil said, "they would know it's for him, and they aren't happy with him." Thuruk and Jufdet exchanged a look. "There's always Xenial," Jufdet said. "Who's that?" Jeremy asked. "He works in procurement," Thuruk said. "His family owns multiple 'trading' ship." "They're smugglers," Jufdet clarified. "He claims there's nothing he can't get a claw on, if you can pay for it." "I don't have any money." "Talk to the captain," Thuruk said. "You're part of the crew, so you have a salary. Even if you become a civilian, now that Alix's back, you'll still have something for the work you did." Jeremy though it over for a moment. "Where can I find this Xenial?" * * * * * The procurement room wasn't very large, maybe enough room for three people. Immediately in front of the door was a large window, with rows and rows of shelves behind it. A kelsirian with fur, that was a swirl of brown and gray, was putting boxes on one of the shelves. "Hi," Jeremy said. The kelsirian turned toward him, and he realized she was a woman, with the only thing covering her breast being fur. He looked down at he counter. "I'm looking for someone, I was told I could find him here." "I'm sorry," she replied, "I don't understand your language. You must be the human we took in." Jeremy quickly looked up, to her face. "Yes, I am. I'm looking for Xenial. Right, you don't understand me." "Xenial!" she yelled, and a moment later another kelsirian joined them, this one had light orange fur with patches of white. "I think he said your name, do you know him? Do you speak human?" The newcomer looked Jeremy over. "No, I don't. But I wouldn't mind getting to know him better. I've never had sex with a human before." Jeremy blushed, and looked through his pockets, pulling out his datapad. It's was a kelsirian one, and he'd gotten Leiha to teach him how to read and write. He quickly typed on it. "I understand Kelsirian." "Oh, good." Xenial said. "Are you interested in having sex?" Jeremy stared at him. It took him a few times to manage to type what he wanted "no! I just need to talk to you." "That's too bad. What do you want to talk about?" "Can we talk in private?" Jeremy typed. Xenial looked to his colleague, Jeremy and then the datapad. "That conversation, is it urgent?" Jeremy shook his head. "Then how about I learn Human, and we can have it once I'm fluent." "A private conversation, huh?" the brown and gray kelsirian said. "Watch if he doesn't want to have sex, but doesn't want to admit it." Jeremy's eyes grew wide. "He understands you, remember?" Xenial said. She looked at Jeremy, ears folded back and quickly left. Xenial chuckled. "I'll find you in a few days, and we can talk business."
  12. 1 point
    "Bridge," Jeremy said, to the com. "Bridge here," came the reply. He through it was Haradrel, but he wasn't sure. He was trying to get to know everyone on the bridge, but recognizing voices still wasn't something he'd mastered. "Can we come to a full stop? I'm ready to do a test power up on the generator, and I want the backup offline, to avoid any chance of feedback messing up the readings." There was a conversation, one of the voice was Gral, that voice he could recognize easily. "We'll be in a zone we can safely power down in two hours and a half," Gral said. "You can do the test then." "Got it." Jeremy walked out of the office and went to the techs standing around the generator. "Okay, you guys are off work for two hours. Go eat, relax, have fun. Be back here on time." Nods and smiles were the response, as they headed out. Jeremy turned to get back to his office, but Thuruk grabbed his arm. "You said we all get to go relax for two hours, that includes you." "I have . . ." "No you don't. You have to relax, and I'm not talking about a night of sex with your Heart. There's someone I want to introduce you to." Jeremy grumbled, half heartedly, as Thuruk dragged him along. They went up half a dozen levels to a section of the ship Jeremy hadn't been to before. It looked like a mall. He stopped. "There are stores?" he asked. "Of course we have stores," Thuruk replied, "don't your ships do too?" "Not our military ships." "Then where do the people on those ship get what they need, what their families need?" "Military ships don't have families on them." It was Thuruk's turn to stop. "No families? Where do they go to at the end of their work? Who comforts them on rough day?" "They go to their bunks, I guess. And they have shrinks for those who have trouble dealing with rough days." "Your peoples are weird," Thuruk said. "I don't know, it seems pretty weird to me to have families on a ship you expect to go into battle, what if they get hurt?" "That's why the family units are located in the core of the ship, so every wall acts as extra protection, and that whole section is reinforce. If it get to bad, it can be jettisoned and it will home in on Kelser, and got there. But it'll be pickup before that. No that we'll ever let *that* happen." Thuruk pulled Jeremy inside one of the store. Males and females were standing around, talking. One of the walls was lined with beds, the rectangular kinds this time, and at waist height. He went to the group, moved behind one of the females without her noticing. He nibbled on her neck, just before wrapping his arms around her. "Can I pull you away from your team, love?" he asked tenderly. She turned and nuzzled him. "Of course you can." She looked up and saw Jeremy. "You finally brought him!" she let go of him and walked to Jeremy. She stepped around him, looking him over. "Please take off your clothes," she said. "Excuse me?" Thuruk grabbed her and pulled her into an embrace. "Calm yourself. At least, let me introduce you to him. Jeremy, this is Asarin, my Heart. She's been wanting to meet you since you joined the crew." "It's an honor to meet you," Jeremy said, "But I don't think this is a good idea." Beds, a group of people waiting for customers, yeah. He knew what this place was about. He'd figured out quickly the kelsirian were a lot more relaxed about sex than humans, he still couldn't stopped blushing at eh memory of the couple he walked in on, in one of the recreation rooms. "Why not?" Thuruk asked. "For one thing, you really should have told me what you were planning, for another. I'm with Gral. I know that you are comfortable fooling around outside of a relationship, but I'm not." There was a moment of confusion with Thuruk and Asarin, and then she brightened "Oh, sweets, I don't want to have sex with you." He looked him over. "Actually, I would like to, if you were so inclined, but this is about relaxation. I want to see your body because I'm curious about your musculature." "Asarin gives massages," Thuruk said, at Jeremy's confusion. "She owns the store, and she's been wanting to test her skill on your body. You won't regret it, I promise." He took off his clothes and climbed on one of the bed. One of the males in the group went to him. "I promise," Asarin said, "I simply want to massage your body. I wouldn't have sex here, it wouldn't be appropriate." Jeremy nodded, and watched as the male took a bottle from under the bed, poured liquid on his hand, probably oil, and start massaging Thuruk's back. Jeremy looked around, and turning beet red, took off his clothing, and lay on his stomach on the bed. "Does your clothes keep you skin from tuning red?" she asked as she moved next to him. He shook his head. She placed he hands on his back. "You are radiating heat." She paused. "You're embarrassed?" Jeremy nodded. "Undressed in public will do that to me." "Oh, Sweets, you shouldn't. Even without fur, nakedness is nothing to be ashamed of." Her hands started moving on his back. Her touch was light. "Having fur must make it easier. No one can see of you're blushing." She leaned in. "Look at the inside pavilion of our ears," she whispered, "that's where our blush is the easiest to see." Jeremy smiled, decided he liked her, and let her melt his back.
  13. 1 point
    "This makes no sense," Jeremy said, "Why would you put the backup generator here, of all places? You've got what? Some hangars and storage around here, and nothing else." Thuruk looked at him, smiling. "What?" Jeremy asked. "I'm waiting for you to realize you've answered your own question." Jeremy looked at him, no understanding. "You said it yourself, this makes no sense. This is someplace where no one would think to look for it." "How about scans? Even powered down, it's bound to show up." Thuruk shook his head. "This whole area is shielded. It's in the hull. Something pretty complex, from the subversion division. I don't get it, but it makes scanners see various containers of goods." Jeremy though on it. "You guys really aren't merchants." Gral had implied that much, but he hadn't pushed the issue. "We do trade, at times. Some stations only know us as traders. Being merchants can give us access to information we wouldn't have otherwise." Thuruk led Jeremy out of the room and sealed it behind them. "We are hunters. Our government sends us after criminals, or enemies. Most of the time, we are left to decide what we hunt ourselves. As merchants we listen to the whispers, seek out the scents that lead to those who plot against us, and take them down." Jeremy looked at him. "You sound like you know a lot about that stuff, for a tech." Thuruk laughed. "You'll find that most of us are more than just the title we wear. I am leader of one of the hunter squad. I know what I'm talking about, because, when I'm not working in engineering, it's my duty to go through the information we have gathered and find the parts that lead to our next hunt." "Should you be telling me those things?" Jeremy asked after a moment of silence. "You're one of the crew now. One of us. It's your right to know what we do. As Gral's Heart, you'll learn the workings of the ship, and in time, you'll lead us, like he does." Jeremy swallowed. "I guess nothing says 'welcome aboard' like putting pressure on the new guy." Thuruk put an arm on his shoulders. "Never doubt that you are up to the task. You are a warrior, in time, you will be one of the best." Jeremy looked at him askance, trying to figure out if his friend was just trying to make him feel better, or was serious.
  14. 1 point
    Gral paced by the passageway access. "Where is he?" he grumbled. "He will be back," Thuruk said. "He has already been gone for over an hour. It can't be taking that long to pack his belongings. He said he didn't have much he wanted to bring with him." "I am certain he just got held up. There's nothing to worry about." Gral slammed the communicator by the side of the door. "Bridge here," the communicator said. "Toom, can you tell me where Jeremy is? He should be near his quarters." "Ahhh, yes sir." Was Toom hesitating to answer? Gral wondered. "I'm going to need a moment, to force myself in their system." "That's fine, just tell me where he is." Gral went back to his pacing. "Captain," Toom said no more than a minute later. "He isn't in his quarters." "What?" "I'm accessing the station's schematics. He's in their brig." He wasn't able to hide his surprise. The expletive that came out of Gral's mouth made Thuruk's ears fold back and grow warm. "Get five of Alpha's, suit up and arm yourselves. We're going to get him. I am not going to let them imprison my little warrior." He stormed by Thuruk to go get his own combat suit and weapon. "What caliber?" "Sidearm. As much as I want to bring this station down around their ears, I'm going to try and be reasonable." They went their separate way at the first intersection. * * * * * When Gral came out of his quarters he was dressed in a mate black fur tight suit, and had the largest sidearm attached to his hip he owned. He could make very large holes in the station with it, if they pushed him. Six other Kelsirians were already in the access corridor when he arrived. They wore the same type of suits and had various weapons. One even had a rifle, but Gral didn't feel like getting him to change it. Unlike him they also wore helmets, with their visor on clear. He noted that each one of them was someone that Jeremy knew. They moved out of his way, and Gral found himself with only one person blocking his way. "Ambassador Querik, what are you doing here?" "I am here to stop you from making a mistake." "They are holding Jeremy prisoner." He said in a menacing growl. "I will not let that go unanswered." "I know. The anger you are radiating reached me in my quarters." "Then get out of my way." "No. Not until we have clarified some things." Gral's eyes narrowed, and he growled, but the ambassador did react to it. "I am in charge of this rescue," Querik said. "Alpha is my support and will do what I say and nothing else. Is that clear." "If one of them does anything that looks like it might threaten my little warrior, I will kill them. Is that clear?" Querik stared back at the captain for a moment and then nodded. "Then lets hope it doesn't get to that. I'd hate for my last day here to be marked by the start of a war." He turned, opened the door and strode into the station. * * * * * The station commander met them in the fourth intersection, with ten heavily armed guards. "What is the meaning of this ambassador?" the Commander asked. "You are holding one of the captain's crew prisoner. We are here to take him back." The commander frowned. "We don't have any kelsirian prisoners. Your intel's wrong." "The crew in question isn't kelsirian. I am referring to Jeremy Kromer." "Kromer isn't part of his crew. He's a station tech. If you attempt to kidnap him we're going to be forced to take you down." Querik eyed the commander, then the men behind him. "Do you happen to know who stands behind me, Commander O'Neil? They are six members of Alpha squad, and the captain of the hunter ship Viper's Bane. Alpha squad is an elite hunter team, anyone of them can take down your ten guards without even moving from the position he's in right now. And not hit any unintended targets." The guards behind the commander tensed and pulled up their weapons. No sounds came from behind Querik, and it might seemed like they were relaxing, but he could sense the tension coiled inside each of them, just waiting for the order to be unleashed. "Before this situation escalate out of your control, I believe there are some facts you need to be made aware of. Jeremy Kromer is the captain's Heart. I won't bother trying to explain the details of what this means, you wouldn't understand it, but suffice to say that it makes him his mate, his husband, in your language." "That furball's a homo?" the commander exclaimed. "Yes, he is." Querik knew it had been meant as a slur, but he was the only one who knew the word and he didn't bother reacting to it. "And so is Jeremy." "Bullshit. Kromer's a strong worker. Not a homo. If he's done anything with that thing then he was forced and it's a good thing we took him away from you people." "You may deny it as loudly as you wish, send subliminal indoctrination through the station as long as you want, but it does not change the fact that Jeremy is Gral's lover." "There's no way he'd ever have agreed to that!" Querik suppressed a smile. The commander had be easy to manipulate. "Why don't we ask him?" The commander stared at him. "You said he would never agree to this, then why don't we ask him directly. Have him brought here so he can tell us himself what his choice is." "You're wasting your time," the commander stated. "Then it is ours to waste, and you have nothing to lose." The commander tried to stare Querik down, but he was the one who looked away. "Bring Kromer to my position." He said in a communicator. Less then five minutes later Jeremy arrived, escorted by two guards. They stopped when they stood behind the commander. Querik could sense that he was nervous, but he wasn't letting any of it show. He didn't offer any resistance, he just stood straight and went where directed. "Kromer," the commander said, "why don't you tell the furballs here that there's no way in hell you're going to go with them. "I want to go with them," Jeremy said without hesitation. "What?" the commander turned and reached to grab Jeremy. An arm materialized itself by Querik's head and pointed a large sidearm in the commander's direction. "If I were you, commander, I would be extremely careful about what you do next." The commander turned looked over his shoulder and blanched when he saw the weapon Gral was pointing at him. "Now," Querik said. "Jeremy as answered your question. He wishes to go with us. As per his wishes, we will be taking him. If you want to try and stop us, you are welcome to do so. I'm actually curious to find out if any of your scared guards will be able to let out one shot before they are dead." He extended a hand to Jeremy, who stepped by the commander and joined the Kelsirians. "That's isn't over, ambassador. I'm going to be lodging a complaint." "That is your right, but you'll have to do it when a new ambassador arrives. I am leaving. After learning how you treat your citizens, I find that I can not tolerate staying here. Further more, I will recommend that the kelsirian government removes its support of earth's entry in the federation." He turned, walked through the Squad and headed for the ship's access. "Thuruk, you're Jeremy's shade," Gral said. "Milin, Houral, watch our back. Al'alut and Werin, I want you to cover each intersections we'll cross. We don't have far to go, but I don't trust them to let us go without a fight." "They won't fight us," Querik said. "We have cowed them thoroughly." He proved to be right, there was no opposition on their return to the ship. Gral hit the com as soon as the door was closed behind them "Cycle the engine, we are leaving, have the weapon's hot, we might take fire." "How," Jeremy said. "The generator's still down." "That'd be true," Thuruk said, "if this was a merchant ship, but this is a hunter ship. It wouldn't be very wise of us not to have a back up." "A backup? I don't understand, if you have a backup, why did you limp in?" "We were sent here to find out how advanced your antimatter research is." Gral said, as they continued moving. "We damaged our generator on purpose for the excuse it provided us." "Right," Jeremy said. He'd forgotten their previous conversation about it in the excitement. "Do you need me to tell you about the anti matter generator?" he asked, cautiously. "No, that's irrelevant now." Querik said. "The suppression of it's citizen's sexual preference will be what I will be discussing with the council. We have very strict criterias as to whom we support for entry in the federation. And what earth is doing goes against a major one." By the time Gral, Querik and Jeremy reached the bridge, the ship had already broken from the station.
  15. 1 point
    "Thuruk said something that I'm wondering about," Jeremy said. They were lying in Growler's bed, a bowl shaped mattress in the floor. It was surprisingly comfortable to curl up together in it. Growler was behind him, arms wrapped around Jeremy's chest. They were still mostly clothed, being simply bare chested. They had been this way since they'd entered the room, quite some time ago, and Jeremy was happy things hadn't progressed further, he wasn't sure he was ready for more. "What did he say?" Growler rubbed his muzzle in his hair. "It was just before I ran after you. He said that I was letting my heart walk away from me. I got that he referred to you, but what did he mean?" Growler was silent for a moment, just resting his head on his. "In the beginning of times, Thuruksamian, the father God, created us, and for a time everything was fine. We functioned as he had made us. We survived, we saw to the land, saw to the beasts, and procreated, but eventually he felt that something wasn't right. We did all those things he had made us to do, but we didn't take joy in what we did. We survived, but we didn't seem to truly live. "He pondered that do to for a time. He considered wiping the slate clean and starting anew, but he didn't. He cared for us. If there had been a fault, it was his, not ours. So, he set to work repairing his error. He made Hearts, enough for all of us, those he had created and those who were then born of his creations. "When he was done, he gave them to Salmialie, the messenger God, to bring them to us. Salmialie was normally reliable, but this time, he was distracted by Gezbiliam. Gezbiliam is the Goddess of inspiration, but she isn't always the most . . . lets say, stable of the Gods. Thuruksamian had been locked in his workshop, so she didn't know what he had made, and she wanted to know. "It was an easy task for her to distract Salmialie. The messenger had a thing for her, which she normally ignored, but this time she took full advantage of it. She drew him to her bed and plied him with food, wine and sex. When he was fully sated, and sleeping. She opened the package he had been carrying, and saw the Hearts. "They were precious things, not very big, and fragile, but beautiful. She had a flash of anger that Thuruksamian had been able to make something of such beauty without her help. She almost broke them, but she stopped herself. Gezbiliam is devious. She through, why destroy them, when she could tinker with them, maybe add some confusion to the lot. "And tinker with them she did. And then, feeling that it wouldn't be enough, she shuffled the Hearts in the package, so that none of them would end up with the person it was destined for. When Salmialie woke, alone, he grab the package, unaware of what had been done to its content, and made his deliveries. "What Thuruksamian had put in the heart was happiness, joy, life. What Gezbiliam added was passion, rage, sorrows, envy. And the Hearts being given to the wrong person gave us longing. We can feel that something is missing, and we spend our life looking for our Heart. And when we find it, if we find it, we truly become alive." Jeremy took in the story silently. "We have something similar," he eventually said. "I guess. We call it, being soul mates. They say that when souls are made they are connected to another one, and if we meet the person that has that soul, we can feel it." "You don't sound like you believe it." Growler ran a finger down his chest. "Until I met you, I didn't. I'd never really thought about it. I didn't have any plan on finding someone to spend my life with." "You were planing on being alone?" there was dismay in Growler's voice. "Considering what was done to me, is that so surprising? Every time I thought about what I might want in a mate, I became sick, 'cause they'd programmed me to be sick if I thought about other men this way, and even if I didn't realize it, that's what I wanted. Women never interested me, so I just stopped thinking about it." He felt Growler's arms tighten around him, and they were silent for some time. "Thuruksamian," Jeremey said, mangling the name, as he mangled every kelsirian names. "That sounds a lot like Thuruk's name." "He's named after him. His full name is Thurukselminial. It's a mix of the name for the father God, and the God of work, Lalminuial." Jeremy had had a few session with the kelsirian linguist, so he now understood the language enough to understand that the 'sel' meant 'of both' that it linked both names as one. "I'm named after the Gods of the hunt, and the God of protection." "You're well named. "Jeremy smiled. "Is everyone one named after Gods?" Jeremy asked. "No, not anymore. His family and mine are rather traditional." "Won't they have a problem with you loving me then?" Growler laughed. "No. What we have is tradition. You have my Heart and I have yours. They would never fight against that." "Your Thuruksamian certainly sent the Hearts far." "His reach is infinite, but I think my heart being misplaced so far is more Gezbiliam's work. The Hunter and her aren't on the best of terms. I can easily see her sending my heart so far, to hurt him, through me. But a hunter never stops hunting until he catches his quarry." He nibbled on Jeremy's neck, who squirmed in his arms. "Do you all imagine your gods affecting your lives?" He asked, once his had caught his breath. "Imagine? We don't imagine it, the Gods do intervene in our lives," Growler said. Jeremy turned and faced him. "Come on. gods aren't real. Our ancestors made them up as a way to explain how to world worked, and they became part of our mythology. I really don't want to offend you, but you can't really think gods are real." "Do you know why we docked at your station?" "You needed to make repairs." Growler shook his head. "No, that's just the excuse we fabricated. We are here to find out how advance human research is on anti matter technology." "I've seen your generator, remember? That's no excuse. The damage is plenty real." "It is, but it wasn't suppose to be. Alix, was just suppose to disable it, so that when the station scanned us they'd see we didn't have main power. While here we'd scan the station, access the computers and find out what we needed. Then our 'repairs' would be done and we'd leave." "I thought you were a merchant," Jeremy said. "And I thought Humans didn't have a working anti matter generator," Growler replied with a smile. Jeremy looked away for a moment. "So what happened?" he looked back to him. "Alix disabled the generator, and there was an explosion, it nearly killed him." "So he made a mistake." "No. Alix is my engineer. He's a master at his craft. He doesn't make mistake. Gralgriran intervened because he want me to meet you." Jeremy eyed hims suspiciously. "Consider this, my little hunter, if the explosion hadn't happened, or if Alix hadn't been gravely hurt, I probably wouldn't have left the ship, or maybe just to meet the station's commander, a courtesy. You certainly wouldn't have been there. "Because Alix was hurt to the point he couldn't even direct the repairs, I had to contact the commander, via Querik, to let him know what had happen that we would be at the station for a long time, either until Alix was sufficiently healed, or another ship came to help with the repair. That's when he offered to have his anti matter expert help out. You. I couldn't refuse the offer, but I requested to be present. I wanted to see who I was going to have to let on my ship, and judge that person myself." "You do realize you only got me, because our actual expert, Alison, wasn't here." "Really?" "Yeah. She left the day before you showed up." Growler stared at him, his lips slowly tightening in a smile. Jeremy suddenly realized the reason for the smile. "You can't be serious, it's just a coincidence that she left just before you arrived." "What is a 'coincidence'?" He carefully pronounced the word. "It's the word we use for a when a series of unrelated event can seem related." Growler nodded. "Then coincidence, is the human word for when the Gods meddle." Jeremy rolled his eyes. "Think about it Jeremy. Look at the number of events that had to line up, so we would meet. If any one of them hadn't, we wouldn't be here right now." Jeremy looked at him, having trouble believing he as serious. Coincidences were just that. Sure, it seemed extraordinary, but then so was life. That didn't mean some sort of extra dimensional being had a hand in creating it, right? He felt his confidence waver. Extra dimension were a scientific fact, they couldn't be breached from this side, but did that mean it couldn't happen from the other side? He shook his head. No, that was ridiculous. Their lives weren't guided by other beings. They couldn't be. He sighed. Okay, life could be a series of accidents, over millions and billions of years, but their circumstance was over a few days, a week at most. He had to admit that was a lot of coincidences in such a short amount of time. "Are your g . . . Gods always interfering in your life?" "No, just at important junctions." "So at those times you have to do what they want?" "Hardly. We aren't machines. When we realize one of Them is intervening, we can fight them. They don't all have our best interest in mind. Of course, most of the time, we don't realize what's happening until it's too late to do much about it. They can be very subtle. Then there's the problem of figuring out who is intervening, that will affect how you respond. When the explosion occurred, and Alix was injured, I knew someone was intervening, but I didn't start suspecting who, until I met you." "And then?" "You mean other than force myself not to grab you by the shoulders until you realized what you meant to me?" Jeremy chuckled. "What could I do? I made sure to be around you as much as I could, and not drive you away with the obvious problem you had being me around. Querik did tell me to be patient, that he as helping as best as he could, but ultimately, I could only hope that Gralgriran knew what he was doing, and that we could defeat what ever Gezbiliam's plan was." Jeremy rested his head on his lover's chest. "You do realize that a lot of that sounds like justification after the fact." Growler laughed. "Yes, I expect it does." They were silent for some time. "Tell me your full name, please," Jeremy whispered. "My full name is Gralgiranselhelrarvnir" Jeremy's bones rattled as the name washed over him, and his heart swelled. He looked into Gralgiranselhelrarvnir's eyes, and kissed him. He was ready.
  16. 1 point
  17. 1 point
    General Information Name: Makeo Nicknames: Maki Age: 22 Species: Gryphon (Osprey/Puma) Gender: Male Orientation: Bi, mostly gay Physical Characteristics Height: 6' (Quadruped, approximately 9' from beak to tailtip) Weight: Approx. 440lbs Handedness: Left (Though not used often) Eye Color: Gold/Orange Coloring: A mixture of ivory and a rich brown, reminiscent of the osprey colors and patterns. A series of turquoise accents spiral across the dark brown parts of his wing structure, flank, and tail. Markings: None Jewelry: Wears a selection of various gold bands designed to jingle and make noise History Parents: His parents are a nesting pair of gryphons residing in their claimed territory away from civilization. More details coming soon. Siblings: Several clutch mates, many of whom he's not particularly close to. Backstory: Makeo grew up close to nature, being raised in lands away from common civilization. As a result, he and his siblings were taught the basic skills any fledgling gryphon would need to survive, as well as essential skills needed to interact with bipedal society. Per gryphon habit, the clutch left the next upon reaching adulthood, Makeo among them. From there, he had spent the next few years trying to establish himself as a prime member of his species, but had failed in succeeding in that task. With a fixation on the healing magics he grew to admire at a young age, his ability to fight left him defenseless and at the losing end of any scrap. As a result, he had spent his time roaming territory to territory, in hopes of finding purpose in life. One night, he encountered a strange deity, and followed it to a glass mirror lake. There, he had learned more about himself physically, and his future... a prediction of adventure and exploration, far beyond his home. He was left awed and in wonder, but what secrets were revealed remain a mystery to those around him. He would spend months contemplating this encounter, grasping the revelation bestowed upon him. Upon coming to terms, however, he prepared what little belongings he had, and traveled to mix with the races of the world. In that time, he had earned the trust and respect of a guild of clerics, branded as The Guardians. Surprised at welcoming such a mythical creature but awed at the raw talent of his gryphon heritage, Makeo was taught in the ways of The Guardians. In that time, he had encountered another of his kind, a traveling nomad like himself. In their short time together, Makeo had learned to fight, combining his magical ability with primal fury. As a result, Makeo transformed from a skittish young feral gryphon into an adventurous and centered Guardian, using his newfound talents to meet his destiny head on. Personality Temperament: Makeo is typically open to interaction or request, and will rarely shut out a conversation. A bit awkward, yet full of energy, he has a knack for being the first to blurt something out. Skills: Being trained under a guild of clerics, Makeo has a mixture of potent healing and combat magic abilities that assert him as a Guardian. That understanding of magics go just beyond healing, being able to runecraft to an extent using the natural talent of his gryphon heritage. Phobias: Makeo has a deep fear of failure. When taking a responsibility, the last thing he wants is for it to go wrong. As such, he will grow overly paranoid and anxious about a situation, overexerting himself to correct a problem that isn't even there. Bad Habits: As being from beyond society, Makeo lacks a few social cues that make him somewhat of a nuisence in regular conversation. Among these are occasionally talking out of turn and general lack of awareness to racial cultures. It is a habit that Makeo works extensively on to prevent any trouble, but will sometimes slip into his feral logic at times. Quirks: When it comes to matters of a more intimate nature, the gryphon seems to be reserved, as if hiding something personal. This seems a bit counter intuitive to his curiosity about the subject of intimacy as a whole. Best Qualities: Makeo prides himself on his flexability and willingness to go the extra mile for his friends. Capable in both offensive and defensive abilities, he embodies his title as Guardian to the full extent as he can. The gryphon also enjoys the calmer moments, being an open ear and a warn bed of feathers to lean on in times of strife. Worst Qualities: Because of his fear of failure, Makeo has a tendency to be hypercritical of himself and carries a never-ending sense of anxiety. If there's something he could've done better, he'll berate himself for it. He may even freeze in a critical situation, unsure of the best and most perfect choice of action in that circumstance. Morality: Lawful Neutral. A member of The Guardians, the cleric guild of order and protection, he follows their basic code in his daily travels. Its basic rules can summed as follows. 1) A Guardian must always intervene when danger is imminent. 2) A Guardian must use better judgement to resolve a situation. 3) A Guardian must be prepared to aid anyone, even those who swore his death. Miscellaneous Style of Speech: The gryphon speaks normally for the most part, but has the tendency to mix more feral sounds into his conversation. These can include purrs and chirps. Goals and Motivations: Makeo's motivation was what he had learned from his contact with a deity that fateful night at the lake. A mixture of questioning the feral life he once lived, combined with the desire to seek out the ends of the earth, the gryphon is a true adventurer at heart. Other: >Character Sheet In Progress< This sheet will be revised with more content in time.
  18. 1 point
    Jeremy stretched as he walked by the guard, in the opposite direction that he normally would at this hour. He was sore in places he hadn't known the human body could be sore. Growl . . . Gralgiranselhelrarvnir, he forced himself to use his full name, even if there was no way he could pronounce it. Gral had been gentle with him, but but it still had been his first time with another man, and as pleasurable as it had been, even with some of the pain that couldn't be avoided, his body was now telling him that he needed to let it rest before the next time - and there was going to be a next time, there was no doubt of that. He was on his way back to his room, for a shower. Gral had suggested they take it in his cabin, but Jeremy wanted to put in an appearance on the station, to avoid drawing to much suspicions. "Mister Krommer," someone said behind him, when he was halfway to his destination. Jeremy spun. "Commander!" he said when he saw who it was. "Sorry, you startled me. I wasn't expecting to run into anyone at his hour." "I understand, I need to get an early start today, otherwise I'd be enjoying a few more hours of sleep. Aren't you heading in the wrong direction?" "Ah, no. We worked until late in the night, and I crashed in one of their empty cabins. I'm just going to grab a shower and a change of clothes before going back to work." The commander walked to him and placed his hands on Jeremy's shoulders. "Mister Krommer, I know I said that I wanted them off my station as soon as possible, but I didn't mean for you to work yourself to death. You need to take it easy . . .. Are you alright?" Jeremy's stomach dropped when the commander mentioned the ship leaving. "I'm sorry," he said, turning. "I think I'm going to be sick." He ran to his room, and leaned against the door as soon as it was closed behind him. How could he have forgotten about that? In the euphoria of his day with Gral, it hadn't occurred to him at all that they would be leaving, once the generator was fixed. Gral couldn't stay with him on the station. Even if he wasn't taking into account his duties as captain, there was no way they could have a relationship here. So would he be leaving with them? He tried to remember their conversation before they had become sexual, and he thought that the implication he would was there, but he didn't recall it being said, and he had to know. He couldn't deal with the uncertainty that he might be left behind after discovering love. He turned and almost opened the door to run back to the ship, but stopped himself. If he did, he would arouse suspicions far more than if he'd stayed on the ship. He closed his eyes and rested his head on the door. He brought up the image of the box and considered putting his fear in it. It had helped him remove the artificial anxiety, but this was real. Even if it could help remove his fear, did he want to banish it away. There had to be another way to deal with this. He forced himself to remember what he was to Gral and he to him. He was his Heart, the one his Gods had chosen for him and guided to, across the stars. He wouldn't abandon him. He's said that only when he was with his Heart was he truly alive. That certainty calmed him. He would have to talk with him when he went back to the ship, but he didn't have to rush there, and attract attention. He chuckled to himself. It wasn't like they could go anywhere while he was in the shower. They would have time to talk. * * * * * With his shower done, and fresh clothes, Jeremy headed to the cafeteria hall to get something to eat before heading back to the ship. He grabbed two bottles of liquid meal replacement, he didn't feel like sitting down, he could drink those on his way back. He almost collided with Omar on his way out. "Jeremy," Omar smiled, "I haven't seen you in a while." "Ah, yeah," Jeremy hesitated. "The pills you gave me are working, and I figured I wouldn't bother you until I needed more." Did his excuse sound as lame to Omar as it did to him? "Good, I'm glad to hear it. Why don't you sit down with me and have a real breakfast." He pointed to the bottles. "These things really aren't good for you." He took him by the arm and guided Jeremy back to the line. Jeremy could protest, say that he needed to get back to work, but would that make Omar suspicious? He had time, he reminded himself. Gral wasn't going anywhere. "Are you treating yourself okay?" Omar asked, "I ran into Kathy and Patrick, and they mentioned that you haven't hung out with them much recently." "I've been spending most of my time working on the kelsirian ship. The commander wants them off the station sooner rather than later." "Still, you shouldn't sacrifice your social contacts, and they miss seeing you. How is it working with the aliens?" Omar asked, when Jeremy shrugged. "It's okay," he answered with a smile, and then cursed mentally, he wasn't suppose to be becoming friends with them. "I mean, it isn't like I'm getting to know them, but they are good workers." "If they are so good, why aren't they able to fix it themselves?" Jeremy looked at Omar from the corner of his eyes as he ate. Had his tone really been angry? Or had he imagined it? "They're technicians, think of them as your nurses. They can really help, but they couldn't perform an operation on their own." "And they really have only one person who can work on that generator? That doesn't sound really smart." Jeremy wanted to ask him what the problem was? But he was afraid that he already knew. He force his tone to be casual. "They're aliens, you can't expect them to think like us." He finished his plate. "I should get back to work. How about we meet up tonight? We can talk some more." He didn't wait for the response. He put his dishes in the cleaning bin, and headed back to the ship, forcing himself to walk there, not run. * * * * * He buzzed Gral's office. "Come," he said, and the door opened. "I think they've figured out something up," Jeremy said immediately, removing the smile from Gral's lips. He told him about his encounters. "What do you think they will do?" Gral asked. "I don't know, but considering the extent they went to make sure I'd never feel attracted to a man, I can't imagine it would be good. To be honest, I'm not sure how safe I'd be on the station if they become certain I'm doing more that fixing the generator." Gral leaned back in his seat. "You can move to the ship." He said evenly. Jeremy wasn't sure how to take the statement, he couldn't read Gral's expression. "Do, you want me to?" he asked cautiously. Gral lowered his head. "Yes, I do." He looked at Jeremy. "I can't keep you safe when you're on the station. I know how your people feel about what we have, and I've been worrying about it each time you left the ship." "Then I'll move in with you." "Do you have much you need to bring?" Jeremy thought about it. "No, I've never really accumulated much. A few sentimental things, and my drawings. That's about it." Gral nodded. "Then, when you go to the station for your mid day meal, take your things when you come back. Once you're here, I'll be able to make sure they can't get to you.
  19. 1 point
    Jeremy tossed and turned. He'd woken up, and after trying to fall back to sleep for some time, he looked at the clock. Two AM. And he was fully awake. He could stay here, tossing and turning, or he could go do something productive. A quick shower, dressed, tools in hand, and he was entering the kelsirian ship. The guard just nodded to him, he'd come and go some much that he didn't need an escort anymore. If the commander knew that he basically had free reign of the ship, he'd either be horrified, or demanding that he poke in every cubbyhole and report what he found. The corridors were deserted, but he was still surprised to find the lights dimmed, and engineering empty. He'd expected there to always be someone monitoring. He didn't mind, he could do the work he was planing on alone. * * * * * He'd been working inside the generator for an hour when he heard a door open and close. They had finished replacing the damaged section the previous day, and most of the work now consisted of reconnected the circuitry. Jeremy saw a shadow out the corner of his eyes. It moved around the generator, and then stopped. He could see a pair of kelsirian feet, brown fur marbled with lighter brown. He didn't understand why the circuits were build so large, He could easily rebuild the circuit he was repairing, small enough to fit eight of them in the same space. He finished the connection and crawled out of the opening. He looked at the kelsirian waiting for him and stood straighter on seeing who it was. "Captain," Jeremy said, and kept the mental box close by in anticipation of the anxiety attack. "Engineer," Growler nodded, "how are the repairs going?" "They're going well, I expect that in a few days we'll have reconnected all the circuits and we'll be ready to do a test power up." Jeremy stayed mentally aware of his state, wondering why the attack hadn't come yet. His heart was beating fast, but it was with trepidation, not anxiety. "Do you always come to engineering in the middle of the night?" "No." Growler's lips stretched in what Jeremy now recognized as a smile. "The guard at the access informed me you'd boarded the ship. I decided to come see you, without being one in a crowd of many." "How do you get anything done, if you're always being informed of who comes and goes on the ship?" "I don't. Normally the information goes to the watch on duty, but I left special orders to be contacted directly when you're the one to come on the ship" Jeremy felt himself blush. "Why?" he whispered. "Because I've been asking the Gods for the day when I can do this." Growler took a step and reached for Jeremy. He gently ran the back of his hand down his cheek. Jeremy started panting, gazing in Growler's deep eyes azure eyes. He swallowed and realized he was rubbing his cheek against the hand. He didn't noticed that Growler was closer until he felt his muzzle against his neck, and then a tongue moved up along it. He backed up until he hit the generator console. He put his hands on each side of Growler's head and forced him back in front of him. He tried to kiss him, but lips on muzzle didn't work very well. After a moment of surprise Growler licked his lips and nibbled them gently. Jeremy returned the gesture, and then yelped in surprise when Growler lifted him, and sat him on the console. Jeremy wrapped his legs around him and pulled him against him, gasping as he felt the kelsirian's erection pressed against him. Why wasn't he afraid of what was obviously going to happen, Jeremy wondered to himself. He didn't know, but he did feel he needed some breathing room. He pulled out of the nibbling. "Is this really an appropriate place for this?" he asked softly. "No, it isn't." He could see the effort Growler had to make to calm himself. They were gazing in each other's eyes when they heard a light gasp. They turned to see a furry back walking away. A moment later a door opened and closed. "I guess," Jeremy said, "that if the others are arriving, I should get back to work." He didn't want to work. He wanted to stay in Growler's arms, to find out what else might happen. Growler reluctantly pulled away. "Yes, I expect you should." "Wait, why me?" The question had been at the back of his mind since he'd suspected why Growler kept looking in on him. The kelsirian tilted his head. "You have a ship full of people, I'm not even the same species as you. Why do you want me?" "Because each time I see you, I'm alive. My heart tells me that you're the one for me. That you are the warrior for me." "I'm not a warrior," Jeremy looked away, and Growler gently grabbed his cheek and made him turn his head so he could look in his eyes. "You are a warrior, I saw it on that first day, when you fought not to react to your affliction. I saw it when you came back on the ship, knowing that you'd see me, and terrified of that moment. The battles you fought have been inside you, but you still fought them." He pulled him down from the console. "When you are ready to have your meal, come find me. I would be honored to have it with you." He nibbled on the side of Jeremy's lips before heading out. Jeremy was still dazed when Thuruk walked around the generator. He shook his head to clear it, and realized the kelsirian was looking at him oddly. "What's wrong?" Jeremy asked. Had he done something horribly wrong by being that close to the ships captain? "What are you doing?" Great, he had done something wrong. He tried a few times to explain himself, finally saying. "We were just talking." He wondered if it sounded as lame to Thuruk as it did to him. "Is that what humans call what I saw?" Jeremy reddened. He grabbed a tool and turned to get back in the generator, where Thuruk couldn't see his embarrassment, but the kelsirian grabbed his arm. "What are you doing?" "Look," Jeremy said with a sigh, "I'm sorry if me and Gr . . . The captain did something wrong, I didn't know." "He left," was all Thuruk said in response. "Yes, we have work to do." "You let him leave?" "We have to repair the generator." Thuruk took the tool out of his hand and grabbed him by the shoulders. "The generator can wait. Listen to me, are you really going to let your Heart walk away from you?" Jeremy was taken aback by the earnestness in Thuruk's voice. He looked at the generator, an inert machine, and then beyond it, at the door he couldn't see, but knew Growler had left by. "No, I'm not." He ran out of engineering without a second thought.
  20. 1 point
    Jeremy is standing in the middle of a field, holding his box. Around him are banners, everywhere, with symbols on them. The one closest is a spiral, with a flower on top, this time. He doesn't recognize it, and yet, it seems familiar. On the banners around it are more symbols, some he remembers from the last time he was here, others he hadn't had time to noticed before. A scream in the distance, and Jeremy crouches. It's back. He doesn't know what it is, he's never been able to catch a glimpse of it, but it isn't the first time it's been after him. Night after night it chases him away from this place. The banners want to protect him, but there is little they can do. He can't find safety here. The scream comes again. A metallic screeching that hurts his ears and tries to get inside his head. He can stay here, and try to fight it, but that hasn't worked before. He needs help. He turns and runs, dodging the banners. He knows he won't find help among them. He needs to find the end of the forest of banners if he is to find who he is looking for. The banners thin, and in beyond them, he can see someone, a darker shape, standing, waiting for him. He pushes himself, the thing is catching up. He needs to reach him. As he clears the banners, he can see it's a kelsirian, with brown fur and deep amber eyes. He doesn't stop, he can't give the thing behind him any chance to catch him. The thing screeches, close behind him, when he reaches the kelsirian. The kelsirian closes his arms around him protectively, and roars. That sound eclipses the screeching. * * * * * Jeremy opened his eyes. He didn't know what had woken him, this time, but he quickly notices that his was the first time he'd woken up in the middle of the night without his stomach in knots. He smiled to himself turned and fell right back to sleep

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