That was the sound the door made when it was blown out of the spaceship.
For a moment all the five trouble-students could do was stare at it in
horror. Then all chaos broke loose.
"Look what you did, you dimwit!" Rheeann
called out with the high screeching voice that was so typical for a female
Taranli. Especially the females, with their larger throats and stronger
vibrating muscles were extremely adapted to making the loud noise that was
racketing the ship at the time.
"Be quiet, Rheeann." Mi'raz
called to his sister. Like most male Taranli he hated the sound of a woman
in anger and frustration. From what the other three, who were Ytlip -a far
more advanced race of course- had learned about the Taranli way, Mi'raz'
fear was well-founded. In ancient days Taranli females had often
decapitated some males to get calm again.
While especially Zer was rooting for a nice decapitation in the privacy of
his thoughts, he was all to aware that he too was male. "Yeah
calm down, you freak." he said.
"What do you mean by that?"
Mi'raz asked, ready to jump at the Ytlip.
"Come on if you dare, you Ssshaaaaseen!!!"
Zer called out, using an old Ytlip word for chicken, though slightly more
provoking than the English term. It was enough for Mi'raz to charge toward
Zer, long fingers flexed out for a slow, suffocating death. He
accelerated, floating and pushing his body mass through the ship now that
the gravity was failing. Then he slammed into a door, which of course
didn't provide a pretty picture in almost zero gravity.
"Quit it!" Lorry shouted.
"Why?" Zer asked, "I
could have taken him on."
"Men!" Lorry said with all
the frustration she could muster. Just like them to go fighting in times
of disaster. With a few long strides, Lorry moved her body made for low
gravity gracefully through the air. She landed next to Rheeann, took out a
roll of duck tape and taped shut the screeching girl's mouth before she
"Ahhh... Now I can think again."
Lorry said, "Whose fault was this?"
"Certainly not mine." Zas
It was the first time on the trip *cough*joyride*cough* that Zer's twin
brother had spoken. Logically the others became a bit silent when they
heard his raspy voice. Zas had never fully learned to talk the common space language
used by over twenty races in their vicinity. Thus his voice was still used
to the harder, louder sounds from the Ytlip talk.
No-one of the other's came forth to confess blowing of the door. Lorry
walked past Zas, Rheeann and Mir'az. She stopped in front of Zer and
looked at him.
"You don't seriously think I did it!"
he yelled at her.
"You're just about crazy enough to do it.
And isn't there the old saying: 'If there's an explosives expert in the
group, blame him for any explosions you might encounter?'"
she asked innocently.
"Oh come on!" Zer called
out, his pride badly damaged, "You blame me
when these two, Taranli scum are around?! I can't believe it."
"Neither of them has the brains to pull this
This of course got Lorry some foul, angry looks from both Mir'az and
Rheeann, though they didn't attack, they knew better than to attack Lorry.
For an Ytlip, who were usually small and slender she was freakishly strong
and well educated in some form of Kung Fu.
"We better fix it." Mir'az
finally said with his teeth jammed together in his mouth which produced a
grinding sound. Lorry smiled her toothless Ytlip smile that looked like a
Piranha who was about to eat you and said: "That's
a good idea, Mir'az."
"How?" Rheeann asked who
seemed to be calmed down enough to talk normal again. She was hardly red
at all anymore, though her skin seemed to have lightened to a white shade
of pale. Lorry always found the Taranli skin-changes amusing. An Ytlip
always stayed the same pale green-blue, a far more attractive colour.
Zas and Zer started working on the door, giving anyone who came too close
an angry look. Soon the two Taranli kept to themselves in the back of the
"Why did we ever come along?"
Mir'az asked his sister.
"You thought it would be fun to see some
Ytlip in action." she answered.
"I thought...? I'm sure you had something to
do with it too." he said.
"Well maybe I pushed you through the door
when you looked back to say you had just been kidding..."
she said innocently, "It's all behind us
"That's easy to say now."
Rheeann shrugged. The day had been boring at school, like it always was.
'Nebula School for the gifted' they called it, but most kids weren't all
that gifted. Not since the school had been forced to also take military
cadets who were being trained in killing. Those guys were just big
softies. They dragged the whole average down and made the real students
look like dorks who couldn't take out someone if they had a gun in their
hands and were within 2 metres of their target.
That's why she had wanted to get on this ship. It was easy to
find out what the other students were planning... well it was if you were
a flexible youth with a sense of direction that could conquer the vent
system in the school. Spying had always been Rheeann's passion, she loved
to know things no-one else knew. In fact she had been accepted to Nebula
because she had incriminating evidence about the guy taking the
interviews. Boy had he been naive.
"What are you smiling about?"
Mir'az suddenly asked.
"Nothing... just memories. You know, I think
my life is flashing in front of my eyes already." she
shrugged. Lying was also something that didn't come hard to her.
Mir'az looked at her a little and then gave up. He had never been able to
understand what made his sister tick. He didn't even know how she had
gotten into the school, though she always seemed to get good grades.
Mir'az had never been able to be as good as she was... well he was better
than her in one area of expertise. Mir'az could disassemble a whole
spaceship and put it back together in working order. All mechanics made
him shiver in delight. One night he had broken into the school's
computer... he knew what the others were like. That didn't exactly make
him feel better at the moment, though if anyone could pull off a
spectacular escape it would be them.
"Lorry... should I help with the door?"
"No Taranli-boy," she said
smiling, "You'll be sucked out before you
can say Riot. You and your girl can check out the lifepods."
Lorry continued grinning.
"I am not his girl!" Rheeann
screamed, "How do you dare say that! I'm his
sister and I could do better than him!"
It was always nice to hear these things from your sister, very good for
your self image. In fact, now that he thought of it, he also got good
grades for psychology. Maybe he was better than his sister in two areas.
This sudden thought made Mir'az feel better again. It's funny what things
make you feel better in the face of certain death.
"I just heard you Taranli like such kinky
games." the Ytlip said menacingly.
"Come on..." he said to
Rheeann, dragging her away from the female Ytlip, who though she was half
a meter smaller than Rheeann could in fact beat his sister to pulp if she
had the chance.
Lorry turned to Zer and Zas when the two Taranli were out of earshot. She
really needed to find out who had blown the door. Zer still was her main
target. A short fuse and a knack for bombing were a deadly combination, a Molotov-cocktail
if you will. And the door had been blown out. On the other hand, though
Zer could be called a little loony, he wasn't completely suicidal.
This brought her to Zas. Zas might have been suicidal. He might have been
a drag queen in his spare time for all she knew. Zas was a mystery. A
strategical mastermind according to their professors. But what did they
know about them? Not much. Ytlip were still largely a mystery to the dull
Taranli researchers. How did she know this? They had been admitted to the
school. No-one in their right mind knowing anything about Ytlip history
would let members of their race in on defence-secrets. In fact, if the
mission went well, Taranli-Main was in for a nasty surprise very soon.
"Is the information safe?"
she asked Zas.
"Locked tightly in my noggin."
he said in fluent Ytlip, filling the corridors with hisses and slurs, his
voice now sounding very adapt to the language.
"Quiet." Lorry said, "I
suspect the female knows our language."
"That screamer?" Zer said,
his eyes again ablaze with fire.
"Yes, her. She knew how to find us,
Zer looked at his brother, the resident mastermind. Zer, though a bit
envious, still found being a bomb-specialist and a terrorist was way
cooler than being a mastermind... which showed just how juvenile he still
was to Lorry.
"The door must have been the guy... he's the
one who knows how to handle the machines." Zas remarked.
"I sent him away." Lorry
"The life pods."
"You trust him with that!!!" Zer
suddenly cried out.
"Control yourself! I've got them on the
monitor, he knows that. No, we won't have to expect any more
"It could have also been a failure." Zas
"What?" Lorry asked.
"It's very hard to tell... if he was sent to
sabotage us, which is likely -these Taranli always take the quiet,
controlled types for these jobs- then he is good. I can't tell you 100%
sure that it was him. It's more like 50-50."
"Interesting." Lorry said.
"I don't think we can fix it." Zer
finally said, looking up from the rubble of ton metal.
"He's right." Zas added. "This
baby is flying her last lightyears."
"Too bad... We'll miss our
appointment." Lorry said.
"So be it. It's not like they're expecting
"They might if they find out we're
missing." Lorry told Zer.
As one the three stood up and walked toward the life pods. They talked a
bit about random things as not to alert the two Taranli. Soon they might
have to dispose of them. Unaware victims always were the easiest.. and the
Lorry, chosen to attend the academy on her leading abilities and martial
arts skills decided to give the Taranli the benefit of the doubt. Maybe
they were just what they seemed, harmless.
"Into the pods!" she yelled
when they saw the two humans in front of them. They didn't react quickly
enough, so maybe a little panic would be good.
"We DO need to get in them."
"The door?" Mir'az asked.
"Beyond repair." Zer said,
"Got a problem with that?"
"No." Mir'az answered...
though he felt it was hard to keep his cool around these guys. They seemed
to be walking around with a permanent "Bash me!" sign flashing
in neon colours above their heads.
"Taranli! You and Zas take this pod."
Lorry said, "Zer, you're with me."
"Do we get any say in this matter?"
Rheeann asked bithy.
"No." Zas replied. He opened
the hatch and threw them in, waiting for Lorry to give the 'go'-sign.
Lorry steered the life pod away
from ship while they still had fuel. The trick was to get as far away as
possible before all the air was sucked out and the ship buckled, trying to fill the whole of empty space.
"The others?" she asked Zer.
"Coming right behind us."
After a short pause Zer continued: "Was it
wise to leave them with my brother?"
"Well I couldn't leave them with you and not
a scale on my body was thinking of spending a few weeks with that Taranli
girl in close contact."
Zer shuddered, "I know what you mean.
They're so ... horrible to the touch."
"Now you're over-exaggerating."
"Not one bit." Zer said.
"Ai!" Lorry said, "They're
still too close to get out of the blast's way."
Before their eyes they saw some of the ship's debris flung toward the life pod
of Zas and the Taranli. With expert steering Zas kept the pod flying,
though on a crash course to the nearest planet. And this in unchartered
"Lock these coordinates in your brain, Zer."
Lorry said, "I just ran out of fuel."
"We can't get him?"
"Not any time soon."
"The info..." Zer said.
"We'll get him back, just set sail to the
nearest space station where we could hitch a ride home."
"It's a Taranli-base. Star City
"Neat. No-one will look for us there."
Lorry smiled her piranha smile yet again and set course to Star
ZER - LORRY
do you keep calling us Taranli?" Rheeann asked the
grim-looking Zas, "We told you, we prefer to
be called humans. I just know Taranli is something demeaning."
The grin Zas gave her only confirmed her thoughts on the word Taranli.
"Where are we going to land?"
Mir'az asked, trying not to start a fight in the small quarters of the
life pod. He knew all too well what an Ytlip could do to human flesh if
they couldn't run off and hide until they found some guns. Maybe humans
had grown too accustomed to guns, Mir'az surely missed the semi-automatic
he had at home.
"Down there is where we're going."
"A-ha." Rheeann said with a
look of sheer panic on her face. "Mir'az,
you remember what I said earlier about my life flashing before my
"Well... it's happening for real now."
"This titanium shelter will protect us from
the worst impact." he told her, doubting it would prove
true. They were falling faster than he could even calculate, but only
because he didn't know the exact mass of the planet below them. He never
had been good at guessing.
"Where are the others?" he
"Blown away by the blast."
Mir'az sighed. Now that the immediate danger of death had been replaced by
the 'we'll get crushed eventually'-danger Zas had returned to being
silent. Mir'az almost missed talking to him even if the alien's voice
sounded like sandpaper and crushed glass.
Right before they hit the atmosphere, which would hurl them faster to the
ground and -hopefully- into an ocean Rheeann suddenly turned to her
brother. "Hey! Why were you already..."
But she couldn't finish that thought, suddenly realising that her brother
had been walking around the spaceship before she had entered it with him,
but not knowing why. They hit the planet in a bay, which was about the
best place they could crash, with land close enough around them.
Zas clicked open the hatch with one move from his skilled hands -fingers
with an extra twist did seem to enhance movement and motor skills- and
dragged himself out. Mir'az watched as Rheeann crawled out behind him and
then also left the pod.
"Hello!" they heard screaming from the shore.
"Thank God!" Rheeann smiled,
by what?" Mir'az asked when he saw the large green
creature behind the person waving at them. Mir'az looked at Zas for a
reply, but the Ytlip didn't seem to feel like talking now that he saw the
planet was inhabited by more Taranli and their large, powerful friends.
ZAS - MIR'AZ -
Back to Lantessama Isle
Zer and Lorry are Candidateas at Star
Mi'raz, Rheeann and Zas are Candidates at Tripaldi
Font used is called 'Hypmotizin' and can be found here.