1. For prospective new members, a word of warning: don't use common names like Dennis, Simon, or Kenny if you decide to create an account. Spammers have used them all before you and gotten those names flagged in the anti-spam databases. Your account registration will be rejected because of it.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Since it has happened MULTIPLE times now, I want to be very clear about this. You do not get to abandon an account and create a new one. You do not get to pass an account to someone else and create a new one. If you do so anyway, you will be banned for creating sockpuppets.
    Dismiss Notice
  3. If you wish to change your username, please ask via conversation to tehelgee instead of asking via my profile. I'd like to not clutter it up with such requests.
    Dismiss Notice
  4. Due to the actions of particularly persistent spammers and trolls, we will be banning disposable email addresses from today onward.
    Dismiss Notice

Desire for Destiny (sci-fi web serial)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by IBulit, Apr 15, 2019.

Loading...
  1. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    The last thing Jason Ling expected waking up was to appear in a library light years away from Earth. Naked, afraid and enslaved it's up to Jason to pave himself a road to the future. With only his brains to help him, will he be able to thrive on Veritanis - a giant ring-world, where good and bad, sins and virtues, heroes and villains from all around the Universe are pitted against each other in a race of ambition?

    A science-fiction web-serials that will be updated twice a week on Tuesday and Saturday. The size of chapters will vary, but with exception of the first one I plan to sticking to >1500 words per chapter.
    Also looking for beta.
     
    mightykk and Warer like this.
  2. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.01
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Chapter 1.01
    As Jason slowly climbed up from the depths of slumber he could feel the hard cold surface he was lying on. Wait, that didn’t make any sense! He could distinctly remember, through the mild haze of hangover, that after a night of drinking with his friends he fell into his bed to catch some sleep. At worst he had to feel hot and sweaty in his formal suite, not cold and with numb. Some few moments later he started to get the feeling back into his limbs, and even, human resilience be praised, was able to slowly open his eyes to see book shelves?
    Indeed those were the tallest walls of papery goods he had ever seen. There were no obvious sources of the soft ambient light that filled the room, which was neither too bright nor too dim. It was just perfect for ocular observation. Not that it allowed him to see the roof or the top of the shelves. No sir!
    After some time, enough strength returned to him, and he was able to get up.
    “Ai, the hell.” Well he tried to get up. Rather unsuccessfully as his knees hit the floor.
    ‘Goddammit, couldn’t those jackasses leave him some clothes, instead of dumping him on the frosty cold floor.” His friends were for sure behind this. Who else could have been stupid. Jason regretted not befriending a med student, who could’ve told others how bad it was for kidneys to leave him in such state.
    Having no other choice, Jason sat there, massaging his limbs and grumbling at the merits of friendicide. Normal blood flow restored, he got up and looked around properly. What he saw didn’t surprise him: long corridor between bookshelves, crisscrossed by other corridors. Only when his gaze lingered on books’ spines for a moment he started suspecting something was amiss.
    The words weren’t in any of the languages that Jason had a passing familiarity with. Moreover it seemed that each and every book was written in different languages. The symbols used had very little similarity. One had letters made up of geometric figures, and another one had angular signs that strongly resemble viking runes. Jason used to date a girl who was into this neopagan nordic scene, so he picked up couple of things. But even if he squinted, closed one eye and reverted to the drunken state of yesterday the best he got was - ‘pretty little breakwind’. So yes,Jason was quite sure those were no runes.
    Another bizarre thing - all the books were covered in translucent film. Jason took one book from the shelf to get a closer look. The book was hermetically sealed. The material was stronger than cellophane. He tried to unwrap it, but found it impossible. ‘Maybe it’s to preserve them? Reduce effect of environment or whatnot.’
    A horrible cough racked his body. Jason doubled in half, dropping the book as his forced cough out his body. When the coughing calmed down, Jason saw something very worrying on the palm of his hand - blood.
    Oh that wasn’t good. Worse than that it was impossible! He was healthy as a horse for as long as he could remember. On top of that he went to medical check ups twice a year and nothing concerning was found. Jason hyperventilated. Here he was - stuck in some high-end archive, with lungs, damaged from tuberculosis or cancer. Panicked, Jason ran down the corridor. His eyes wild, he ran without direction, purely for the sake of moving. He needed to do something, to get out of here. He screamed at the top of his lungs, desperate to find someone to help him.
    Alas, it only resulted in racking his body in coughing. As his body shuddered, expelling blood and mucus, his thoughts turned depressive. He was starting to doubt he had his friends to blame.
    Once he stopped coughing, he turned around the corner and froze in place. His ears had finally picked up something that wasn't a product of his actions. Seriously, even the typical library silence was absent. Instead of comfort the silence that space filled the space was alien to him. It pressed oppressively on him.
    So with great relief and relish he drank in the sound of someone else's steps. He didn't know why was he standing in place, listening, instead of running there. Maybe it was this entire situation. It was certainly bizarre enough to warrant some caution.
    As Jason continued listening, steps became stranger and stranger. It was obvious a duo. Two distinct patterns could be heard. That wasn't the strange part.
    Jason was no Sherlock, but he was sure: one of them was massive, the steps were too heavy. They thumped with the sound of potato sacks being dropped on the floor.
    The other had an opposite problem - steps were very light and...skittish for the lack of better word. It sounded more like a centipede scuttering around than a person walking.
    Doubts plagued Jason. Risk it or not?
    Jason made his choice. He breathed in, breathed out and stepped around the corner.
    He wished he hadn't. The figures were anything but human. One was a massive hulking ape. Its flowing orange fur was braided in multiple places, with colourful beads and streaks weaved into braids. As Jason looked up he got a good look at its “face*. It was an elongated mug, a twisted parody of an ape. Deep green eyes shone with unexpected intellect. Also, leather belts with pockets were wrapped around his arms and torso.
    Jason’s mind flashed back to the safari his parents taken him 7 years ago. They were driven through the park, when the gaggle of monkeys attacked the car. They rocked their vehicle, banged on the windows, smearing their excrements wherever they could. The thing is, they were meter long and not 2.5 meter height that this specimen showed.
    The other one was even worse. If the giant ape at least looked like something that could be found on Earth, the insect was certainly alien. A chitinous parody of a centaur, it stood on six multi jointed limbs that were attached to a broad hard shell. It was lustre, and shone with dark blue light. From it rose a long torso. It had two limbs that ended with surprisingly human looking hands, albeit blue and 7 fingered. However the worst was the head. Jason had to held back the vomit, as he watched bobbing three-eyed head. The eyes looked like those of a fly. Now Jason could hear the clicking of its many mandibles.
    Jason stood there frozen. He saw as the creatures’ heads turned in his direction when the shout escaped his mouth.
    “Dharm pklun sttram.” rumbled the Ape as he started walking towards me.
    “Click click clock click” Insect spread his wings and waved his antennas. It’s head froze for a second before a spray of pungent skunky liquid heat my chest. The smell was beyond horrendous. Apparently it was what he needed as it snapped him right back. So without any thoughts he turned around he sprinted away.
    Second later beasts gave chase.
    ‘Think Jason, think!’ Begged himself Jason as he turned around another corner. It was obviously stupid to run down straight corridor. Massive Ape would be on him in seconds, as his superior physique would grant him speed to catch up to him. So the only hope was to constantly cut corners in this maze.
    Left, right, left right. It was important to never turn in the same direction. The last thing he needed was running in circles.
    Jason was never a star athlete. Sure, he didn’t adhere to wimpy nerd stereotype, but jock he was not. With each second of sprinting his breath grew shorter. Unable to breathe fully, he couldn’t enough oxygen in. Jason could almost physically feel as lactic acid accumulated in his muscles. He had little time before he would have to stop. There was one trick he had to do.
    He picked a bookcase that was slightly smaller than the rest. He paused in front of it, squared his shoulders and leveled defiant gaze at the oncoming Ape. With even a bit of running distance it was able to accelerate to an incredible speed.It ran straight at him.
    Prepared, Jason bent his knees and in the last second he jumped away, expecting Ape to crash into bookcases. What he didn’t expect was for Ape to grab his arm and slam him against the shelves. Air was forced out of him as his ribs worryingly cracked. Pain engulfed Jason. His vision started to blur and fade. The last thing he saw were the forms of Ape and Spacemantis peering down on him. After that there was only darkness.
     
    mightykk likes this.
  3. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.02
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Chapter 1.02
    For the second time Jason had to climb up from the abyss of unconsciousness. Surprisingly enough he didn’t feel the pain that he should have felt. Jason slowly inhaled and exhaled. Yep, he could breathe normally, without pain strangling his lungs. Odd. He could’ve sworn his ribs got cracked. Then again when you’re attacked by a tonne of giant Ape, thoughts were bound to get jumbled up.
    Well there was no point looking gift horse in the mouth, his body seemed alright and it was all that mattered. Now he needed to think of a plan to get out of this mess. Whatever this was. Jason had discarded the thought that his friends were behind it. The situation possesed painfully reality to it, something a prank could never have.
    “While I understand your reluctance to confront the situation. It is prudent for you to open your eyes.” Someone interrupted my thoughts. Well joke on him, for he was dealing with the Jason Ling - three times winner of international “Just 5 more minutes, Mum” competition.
    “I can see on the monitor that your cerebral activity increased. Also it’s quite obvious that your heartbeat spiked. Please do not attempt to evade the inevitable.” Despite the overall flatness of the tone, Jason still heard the annoyance creeping in.
    Crap! He got me cornered. So he had no choice then. It wasn’t like he was going to continue this childish petulance. Obviously!
    One by one, as if hesitating, Jason opened his eyes. He immediately searched for the person who spoke to him, some desperate part of him hoping that it was just him going crazy from all the cramming. His hopes were dashed as the figure conversing with him was the Spacemantis that accompanied Giant Ape.
    “There is no need to be afraid.” It was weird. He saw mantis wave its antennae and clack its mandibles. Not to mention the horrible, albeit muted, odor. Yet halfway between his sensory organs and his brains all of that translated into coherent human speech.
    “Well, looking at these readings, it appears your organism was restored sufficiently well.” informed me Spacemantis.
    I looked at him, puzzled. What readings? Then I noticed behind him a tall panel with what appeared to be molten silver on top. Constantly, vibrating spikes surged from the surface. They had different height, width and colour. In addition, they vibrated with different frequencies. This monitor? Made no sense to me, but evidently it worked for Spacemantis just fine.
    “Eh...that’s good to hear, mr…” I trailed off, expecting him to give me his name. Awkward, unwieldy silence settled between us. He didn’t seem to have any discernible reaction, instead he stood there still, his antennae erratic and the body still as a stick. Seeing no other choice I elaborated.
    “What should I refer to you? See, I was sort of calling you ‘Spacemantis’.” I told him embarrassed.
    He continued to peer at me, and most likely the rest of the room through his fly-eyes. He lowered his antennae until they were almost parallel to the floor. Jason had no clue why, but the gesture seemed to convey...bemusement.
    Having finally come to some conclusion, he answered.
    “You may refer to me as…” what followed was a rather long series of clicks and clangs, as well as about seven different flavours of rotten sweat-like odor. All of that was quite neatly summarised as “Mossegg.”
    “Nice to meat you, Mossegg.” Jason was feeling quite proud of not stumbling on unusual name, as he automatically outstretched his hand for a handshake. Second later the strongest desire to strangle himself hit him. What was he doing! He had seen this guy’s paws, those sharp hooks for fingers did not look good. Nevertheless, the civility of their exchange, that contrasted so much with what he expected, gave him a pause.
    Jason took a deep breath, and kept his arm outstretched. Mossegg meanwhile had his antennae in the same bemused position as before.
    “What does this mean?” asked he.
    “It’s a gesture we - humans, use as greeting. You know, to show that we don’t hold weapons.” said Jason, remembering half-forgotten trivia one of his friends once shared with him.
    “What an aggressive species you are.” remarked Mossegg dryly. Jason nothing really substantial to argue with, not that there was any need. He didn’t sound judgemental. Then again it wasn’t like he was an alien space insect expert. Who was he if not an optimist, though.
    “As educating as it is, I am afraid you are expected somewhere else.” said Mosseg. He grabbed the edge of blanket that covered Jason and removed it. Cool hair hit him. Alas he was still just as naked as that time he had to run around the campus. It was a long story.
    Nevertheless, there was no point in stalling, so he rose. He shivered as he stepped on the cold floor.
    “Follow me.”
    They walked through the corridors. Unlike the library which at first and the second glances looked like typical high-end library, these corridors were quite different. They weren’t rectangular but rounded, with walls and floor being grainy rather than smooth. Not to mention the corridors were much taller. Good thing too, as if they were human sized, Mossegg would have been unable to travel through them. Still, what was the coarseness of the surfaces for? Maybe to allow species with different mobility methods to move?
    Jason voiced his guess.
    “Correct. Myriads of various life forms pass through these halls on regular basis, architecture must be able to serve the needs of each and every one of them. Granted, it can be rather difficult with some of the more…” the clicking of his mandibles continued at a steady pace, as he trailed off, as if looking for a right word, “unconventional species.”
    More unconventional than a sentient insect? Before Jason could was able to ask Mossegg to tell him more, they arrived to their apparent destination. Mossegg stood in front of the circular membrane that gleamed with pale white light. His folded wings quivered strangely as Mossegg bent his legs in a manner that was entirely too bizarre.
    “I believe it would be better if you stepped first.” pheromoned me Mossegg with...Is it trepidation I smell?
    Shrugging, Jason stepped into membrane. Momentarily, its elasticity resisted him, but then he passed through. It was an admittedly weird sensation of having something cool and elastic enveloping, and then releasing you on the other side. A heartbeat later Mossegg passed through the entrance, nervously waving his antennae.
    They were in a large dimly-lit chamber. Its wall walls were hidden behind shelves that had numerous books, scrolls and various nick-knacks whose purpose Jason couldn’t fathom. In the centre, perched on the large crimson pillow was a lizard. It was abnormally large for a non-dinosaur reptile with its 1,4 meters of height, but it certainly looked diminutive compared to even Jason himself. The fact that it was pink with yellow spots and stripes didn’t help. Jason felt a grin form on his lips. Maybe it was a touch hysterical, but after scary looking Mossegg and Giant Ape*, this adorable creature was just too much. Jason cracked a smile seeing a large bowl of lollipops standing on the table in front of the lizard.
    “I brought him, sir!” said Mossegg, still standing behind me. What was with him?
    Lizard froze, his head and eyes finally locking into one position as he looked at me.
    “Yes, I see.” He opened his mouth and hissed at me. “My name is Garuda Doj and I don’t have time for you, so I’ll be short. You aren’t on your mudball anymore, you’re on Veritanis - the centre of the Universe. Due to phenomenon of Quantum Super Tunneling your atoms spontaneously materialised in our library. The damage you wrought with your mammalian behaviour will be compensated by your labor. From now on and until you pay off your debt of 56,000 singlars you will be an indentured servant.” hissing paused, as Garuda moved one of its eyeballs moved to stare at Mossegg. “Go settle him in, and explain his situation.”
    “Now wait a second. Who the hell do think you are…” Jason was interrupted as Garuda shot its tongue at him. Its fleshy tip hit his throat and quickly retracted back into his mouth. Jason felt his throat going numb, it was getting harder to breathe.
    “He was getting aggressive wasn’t he?” asked Garuda energetically. “I think he was. Just look, look at how he looked. Those mammals never know how to behave like proper sentient species.”
    Mossegg gave no reply, probably seeing rhetorical question for what it was. Yet he made no move to help Jason, he just stood there cowering. His antennae were pointed straight up, as they vibrated.
    Jason didn’t have enough oxygen in the blood to understand him. His throat was inflamed, so no matter what he tried pull in some air, he couldn’t. The edges of his vision had already started to darken, when Garuda shoved a lolly into my mouth. Was that bastard laughing at me? He probably was, undoubtedly the sight of Jason writhing on the floor delighted him, with last desperate burst of spite, he tried to bite the offending fingers. That did nothing as Garuda’s skin was as tough as leather. Lolly remained in his mouth. Good for Jason as a moment later it dissolved and the resulting liquid washed down his throat, relaxing and relieving inflammation.
    Jason never knew how brilliant and amazing, previously considered sterile, air could be. He lay on the floor, feeling as sweet sweet oxygen spread from his lungs to all the corners of his body. He had forgotten where or with whom he was, and just enjoyed the acts of inhalation and exhalation.
    Alas Garuda was all too eager to remind him of bad bad reality.
    “Now, softscale. If you don’t want to get on my bad side, you’ll follow the rules and obey your betters.” he pressed his clawed hand to Jason’s cheek. “Got it?”
    Up close Garuda Doj no longer looked as comical as before. On the contrary the contrast between humorous appearance and the violent disposition made Jason shiver.
    He nodded, and was relieved when Garuda removed his hand from Jason’s cheek.
    Garuda turned around and stalked back paying neither Jason nor Mossegg any mind.
    Mossegg bent, and helped Jason get up. He hurriedly, or at least with greater haste, shepherded Jason out. When they were outside, and after walking for a couple of minutes Mossegg started talking.
    “That went surprisingly well.” clacked he. Jason wasn’t sure whether to take it as sarcasm or if he was being serious. Considering that he had never over the course of their acquaintance heard him sarcastic, Jason decided to take it at face value.
    “Are you kidding me?”exclaimed Jason. “What did he mean - indentured servant? I didn’t damage anything in that library of yours.” He was beyond angry, again someone was trying to collar him to their own design. Difference was, it wasn’t his family doing it.
    “You seem to be under misconception that damages were physical.” Mossegg tilted his head, giving two of his eyes a better look at Jason. “Are you not aware of Probability Dispersion Phenomenon?”
    “No, never even heard of it.” said Jason.
    “But it’s the basics. Even I know them!” said Mossegg, looking agitated.
    “While we are on the subject. What the hell is Quantum Super Tunneling?” asked Jason.
    “How primitive is your species?” asked Mossegg.
    “Yeah, yeah puny humans are dumb,can’t you just tell me?” ignored Jason the question.
    “Well this terms describes a phenomenon that increases the discrete probability of certain states of atoms from microscopic to an absolute certainty.” said Mossegg.
    “Okay, so it basically makes possible but improbable into inevitable.” tried Jason.
    “A succinct summary.” conceded Mossegg.
    Jason rolled his eyes at his companion’s apparent need to overcomplicate things.
    “So what does it have to do with any damages? I remember waking up on the cold floor, not telefragging the bookcases.” asked Jason.
    “To blatantly oversimplify, the act of your materialisation increased the chaos of probability, which affected the data systems within the library. Electrons didn’t know where they were, and as there was nothing to observe them, they were everywhere. Exabytes of data corrupted…” Mossegg trailed off. But Jason got the picture.
    “It wasn’t my fault I didn’t ask to be sent here.” said Jason.
    “It actually was partially your fault. You see, some sentient beings possess ability to manipulate quantum states to achieve all kinds of incredible feats. When it first manifests, beings tend to undergo Quantum Super Tunneling and appear here.”
    Jason furrowed his brow. Having some sort of super power sounded amazing, slavery, however, not so much.
    “So what is here.” asked Jason as they stepped into a large hall. Unbelievably large, with ceiling disappearing far above. There were two large water tanks on the both sides from the entrance. Scattered throughout the hall were silvery platforms, like the one jason saw when he woke up.
    Without a word, Mossegg approached one of them, and pressed his hand against the surface. Small ripples appeared, as he manipulated its surface. I got my answer a second later, as an opposite, previously grey wall dissolved into translucent barrier.
    What I saw in space was beyond mere words. It was a gargantuan, circular wall of darkness so pure, it shamed the blackness of the night and deepest caves. It was devoid of life, of meaning, of purpose. Yet it possessed an almost hypnotic quality to it. Jason had no idea how long he stared, but when he was able to tear away his gaze, he saw what surrounded the darkness.
    It was a veritable flood of molten light, which encircled the darkness, Jason didn’t know how far away was he from that, but it even as far away as this, it all looked gargantuan.
    Once the shock and awe receded, Jason noticed “smaller” details, like bits of molten light being torn away from the ring to be consumed by Darkness. It was an almost religious experience. Some part of Jason’s brain, that wasn’t occupied by the awe, was amused at the parallels with Egyptian Mythology. ‘Although in this case its disk of darkness devouring the serpent of light.’
    “Yes, most beings find the sight shocking.” Jason was startled by the Mossegg, who quietly approached him. “As you might have been able to surmise we are in space. The megastructure we inhabit is Veritanis - a massive ring that rotates around an artificial star, which itself orbits this black hole.” He paused to make sure Jason understood. “As Garuda Doj told you, it’s the centre of the universe. Not necessarily topologically, bur rather economically, financially, and more relevantly to you - academically.”
    “Huh, what do you mean?” Jason was puzzled. Sure he was a student, but he hadn’t applied here, nor did he tell Mossegg about his status as a student.
    “You now owe a large debt to Veritanis Academia. So you’ll be working for it.” explained Mossegg. “Don’t worry you will be given access to the education. If you are not taught control you will cause more damage than your services could be worth.”
    “Basically they’ll fatten me up to get more money out of me?” Jason asked to clarify.
    After some period of pondering, Mossegg replied.
    “I suppose it is not an inaccurate analogy.”
    “Well, it could have been worse, I suppose.” said Jason.
    “After you are sufficiently trained you’ll probably be sold off. Skilled quanters are in high demand.”
    Few times deserved a facepalm as much as this one. Of course that bastard would be willing to sell him. Yesterday Jason was a winner. He just finished his bachelors, he had friends, he was on top. Now he was going through the corridor of some alien station, officially enslaved with prospect of being sold off somewhere. And the only friendly individual was an alien insect.
    Jason was very engrossed into the dark thoughts. Sights that would have normally spellbound him now were passed by with indifference. As they started walking through more inhabited areas they started meeting more and more other people. Contrary to Jason’s fears, the aliens weren’t all as bizarre as those he met. There were plenty of individuals who wouldn’t have been out of place on a Star Trek set. Variety wasn’t restricted to species though. Clothing was as varied as individuals wearing them. Some wouldn’t have gotten a second look on the streets of New-York or Singapore. Others would have been too bizarre for BDSM dungeons.
    Mossegg and Jason joined a group of tall lean humanoids in a large lift.
    “Where are we going?” asked Jason.
    “The surface.” curtly replied Mossegg.
    Jason decided against pressing for more. Instead he started examining their liftmates. There were five of them. All identical, they stood there motionless, without talking or even exchanging glances. Only after carefully examining them, was he able to see them slowly breathing in and breathing out. Otherwise he would have believed them robots.
    Ding!
    When they walked out, Jason was hit by the stark rays of the sun. After some time spent under unnatural electrical light, being out in the sun was heavenly. Jason was quite content to just stand , as the warm light of the sun suffused him, filled him with pleasant warmth from the head to the tips of the toes. As if by magic all of his thoughts of doom and gloom were swept away. Well not really, a little bit of sun can’t magic away the thought of guillotine prepped and ready, nevertheless Jason felt a little better.
    “Let’s go.” said Mossegg.
    Jason followed Mossegg as they walked down the paths rather slowly. That gave Jason plenty of time to look around. At first glance, nothing seemed too alien to Jason who visited various Botanic gardens in Asia, but as he to looked closer he noticed more and more differences. It was little things that sticked out. Structure of leaves, odd shades of colours and so on. Jason inhaled deeply, enjoying unfamiliar scents.
    Thought struck him.
    “I am not going to get killed by an allergy or some alien virus? Not gonna cry my guts out?” Jason asked Mossegg after catching up to him.
    “I am not sure your biology would allow you to lose your intestines through tear ducts. I wasn’t present when your body was examined, but you wouldn’t have been released if there was any such risk.” he replied, carefully stepping over a purplish yellow snail crossing a walkway.
    “Eh, examined?” That didn’t sound very good to Jason. Mossegg continued to walk towards their apparent destination.
    “Yes.” was his unhelpful reply.
    Nope, Jason most certainly did not feel something cold and slime slither down his back. He was just amused at the irony of going from laughing at stories about people being probed by aliens, to living one.
    He sighed suddenly feeling so very tired. He now had to deal with slavery, lack of basically anything save for clothes on his back and goodwill of an alien creature. Whatever that was worth.
     
    mightykk likes this.
  4. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    So.. He's naked this whole time? LOL. Seems to be a trend these days.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2019
  5. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Yep, that's why comments are good. I haven't spotted this little plothole. I'll need to write in him getting clothes, considering in the next chapter he's already wearing something.
    I mean, it's not unreasonable for others to not give him any clothes, considering his nakedness is about as sexually interesting for them as lizard's or mantis's nakedness for humans.)
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2019
  6. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Which could be a reason for them to 'forget' giving him any clothes. Also, he may not be allowed to purchase this 'luxury' for himself, until after he has paid his debts.

    Just saying... There must be a reason why Skyclad is trending on topwebfiction.com;)
     
  7. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Eh, they don't really have any reason to do that. They may be dicks to him by the virtue of not caring, but petty malice is unneeded, considering their plans for him. Plus he isn't the only humanoid on this gargantuan structure, some of them may take affront))

    As for "Skyclad" I haven't read it, so I don't know, but when this story moves to NSFW it will be due to gore and mature themes, not for lewd.))
     
  8. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    That sounds good too. I'm looking forward to the next installment.
     
  9. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.03
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Well you don't have to wait for long))



    A sexy alien babe. Part 1​
    The rest of their walk was spent in silence, as Jason mulled over everything that had happened to him. There was still much to learn if he wanted to thrive but for now settling down was the priority. Well, maybe he should have paid more attention to his surroundings, as truth be told he had no idea where he was exactly. However judging by the look of the hallway he was in, it was some kind of dorm. Such places, whether they were on Earth or in space, had a unique magic to them. A slightly uncomfortable yet oddly charming feeling that seeped into ones soul. Jason was glad at ending up in a place with something similar to his “pre-phenomenon” life.
    After quickly explaining the situation to the manager, Mossegg quickly left without so much as a goodbye. Jason decided to be optimistic and consider it a cultural difference.
    “Here is your key and the terms of conduct, one infraction and you’re out.” Jason wasn’t sure if it was healthy to feel happy at a rude lady, but goddammit he was ready to kiss her.
    Jason went on looking for his room, and after half an hour of wandering through broad, poorly lit hallways he found what he looked for. Fortunately without any incidents save for bumping into a short person with translucent...well, everything save for clothes. Jason was torn between being rude to a guy who cussed so quickly the translator couldn’t cope, and trying to get a good look at liquids running through the vessels.
    Jason stood in front of the door, key in hand. There was no point in waiting and so, taking a breath, he pressed the key to a sensor pad. Its green diode blinked and turned to blue as the door opened up.
    Inside was a spacious room loosely divided into two parts. The one closer to the window was occupied, with books, clothes and gadgets strewn on the table and the bed. The other occupant wasn’t present and so the meet and greet had to be postponed. Having no personal possessions Jason didn’t have to spend too much time on unpacking. If Mossegg was to be believed, and Jason had no reason not to to, he would receive some basic amenities tomorrow. For now he would have to make due.
    Jason looked at the books that were strewn around the room. “Behavioral sociology of the post-cataract societies” “Xenobiology of dendrovertebrates”? That was some heavy stuff by the looks of things. However nothing really grabbed jason’s attention when he leafed through the books. The terminology-heavy text made it rather difficult to comprehend. Whatever translated everything for Jason, was apparently unable to handle more academic literature. Most likely because those terms had no match in english language. Guess, that was something Jason would have to pick up on his own.
    He lied down the bed, hoping to drift off to sleep, but alas the excitement of the day still coursed through his blood stream, denying him him the oblivion of sleep. With frustrated sigh, Jason got up and headed out, intent on exploring the grounds alone, now that Mossegg had to leave to take care of his own business.
    As Jason walked out of the dorm, he was hit by a shot of self conciousness. He was dressed in white trousers and t-shirt, made of some synthetic material, plus simple shoes. Jason couldn’t remember the last time he was anything but presentable, now he looked like a mental hospital escapee. The thought soured Jason’s mood somewhat. In the end he decided to bullshit his way through, if anyone asked he was going to say it was his culture thing. It didn’t seem like there were any humans around to call him out.
    His worry was unfounded, as the only one judging his appearance was he himself. So as Jason strolled through the park, enjoying the shade provided by canopy of purple leaved trees. He hadn’t gone for walk in a park for so long, he almost forgot the serene feeling it inspired in him. Unfortunately, time was scarce when you had to juggle masters program, work and drama club. Today was probably the first day in 6 months when he didn’t have to rush from place to place, hastily switching gears from studying to serving coffee to Shakespeare. It was ... nice not worrying about that kind of stuff. Jason took another deep breath. Yes, this situation was not without its perks.
    He tried not to think about his friends back home. He had no idea how much time he spent here, but he was most likely already reported missing. Sun no longer filled him with pleasant warmth, now it was just hot, as his shirt stuck to his body from sweat.
    My parents are beside themselves with worry, this is the first time an accident happened to me.’ Jason tried not to think about his grandfather. He was a strong man, who arrived to USA from China with only his clothes, and twenty years later he had a thriving business he clawed and fought to create. Even now, in his old age he was spry and more active than some decades his junior. Still, as formidable as Jason’s grandpa was, he was still 70 year old. It was always a gamble whether or not something would hit him strong enough to kill him. All Jason could do was hope that his strength wouldn’t abandon him this time.
    Jason’s stomach growled. Right, he hadn’t eaten anything since his beer filled “dinner” with his friends. He looked around hoping for an all you can eat buffet to spontaneously materialise in front of him. ‘I mean if I can randomly wake up light years away from home, why can’t human food do the same?’ Jason waited for a minute, but his hopes, to the great surprise of no one, were in vain.
    Well it was a long shot, however it was important to keep an open mind. So Jason went back the way he came, and soon enough he found a large gathering of humanoids. After loligagging for a bit, Jason braved the herculean task of asking for the directions. With that accomplished he went looking for canteen. It was an unremarkable white square building with typically for this place large doors and windows. Canteen was surrounded by tables most of which were already occupied by eating people.
    Inside was not too different from the his university canteen, the only exception being the lack of lunch ladies. Jason joined the short queue, and he shortly reached the end.
    “Insert your dietary chip to the scanning pad or press “Standard nutrition” on the screen.” said an electronic voice. Jason had no idea what “dietary chip” was, so he pressed the provided spot on the screen. In a heartbeat, a tray with 2 kinds of slop filling it. One was salad-green and smelled vaguely of seaweed, and another one was pink in colour and had an unpleasant odor of spoiled meat. Jason was no vegetarian but this time he’d rather skip the meat option.
    “Never throw away food, Jason. You never know when you’ll be able to get another meal.” When grandpa Jeong gave this advice it was ridiculous. There was always plenty of food at home or in supermarket. He wasn’t at home though. He knew no one and had nothing to justify frivolous waste of food.
    After getting a glass of surprisingly normal water, Jason exited the canteen. He might as well enjoy the scenery while forcing the slop down his throat.
    He was lucky, as the large group of humanoids finished their lunch and freed up the spots. Jason chose a little table with a nice view on the lake. Other people kept periodically throwing pieces of food in the lake to the apparent delight of emerald green fish that jumped out of water to snatch a treat. Their sparkling gem-like scales glistened in the sun, before dropping into a sapphire waters.
    Jason just sat down and was about to dig in when a strange sensation washed over him, causing hairs on his arms to stand up. A second later someone put their tray on the table and dropped on the seat across him.
    “Hello, name’s Kalia.” said a female. One wouldn’t be blamed for confusing her for a human - her complexion was very human-like. However only at a glance. Upon further examination, Jason saw the apparent differences. Her arms were longer and more muscled than what would have been proportionate for a human. Fingers ended in short straight, dangerous-looking, claws. She was tall, like a basketball player. Her dark green hair looked dump, like she just got out of the water. She was dressed into a sky blue poncho and dark-grey trousers that contrasted pleasantly with her light red skin. However, what struck Jason the most were her eyes. They shone like molten gold, fiendishly gleaming in the sunlight.
    Jason quickly recovered his addled wits. She might have looked pretty at first but now all the subtle deviations from human-form looked grotesque and quite off-putting. Jason read somewhere that people psychologically find mannequins that are very life-like more disturbing than completely inhuman ones. Jason used to doubt that, but now he was convinced.
    He started to get up, but suddenly he felt weight press on his shoulders. Some creature put its head on his, and flicked its forked tongue across his nose. Jason was not amused. This “vibes”, whatever they were, made him wary. He had little desire to socialise in his current mood.
    “Heya, where are you going, friend! You haven’t even given me your name. Thank the Void, my lershi stopped you.” said Kali with the same bright smile. She grabbed a small pastry roll and dipped it into Jason’s slop, and threw it to this “lershi” of hers.
    “I am Jason. Call off your pet.” said Jason, mustering all the intimidation he had. For years he played the villains in theater, he was an elder brother, there was no doubt in his mind he could scare her off. He was wrong.
    “Uuuh, pretty ballsy of you, considering you have a lershi on your head.” said she with the same careless smile as she snacked on her pastry rolls. Jason swallowed. He didn’t know what they were but they certainly smelled delicious. Kali noticed his look, and her smile widened.
    “Hey now, nice to meet you Jason. See, that was easy. Soon enough we’ll be bestest of buds. We could share our stories and other stuff.” said Kali, suggestively biting into a roll.
    Jason quickly caught on to what she was implying. What he really had to lose? Nothing, and he might get food out of it.
    “Well that’s quite a tail I have to tell you. But seriously, could your pet get off me. It’s distracting.” said Jason, slowly getting into his “stage” voice.
    With a satisfied laugh, Kali beckons the creature. A shadow crossed the table as a dirt-green crocodile creature jumped into Kal’s lap. It was a peculiar thing with four eyes shining with malicious intelligence. Intelligence that was currently directed at Jason, as the creature hissed at him.
    The eyes weren’t the peculiar part though, it was its skin that was weird. Instead of scales one would expect to find one a creature like this, it was covered with something akin to lichen. Swamp-green strands made the creature look furry but little yellow flowers vividly stood out.
    “Erm why is there flora growing out of your lizard?” asked Jason puzzled.
    Kali gave him confused look.
    “What do you mean? It’s a healthy lershi so of course symbiote is so lush.” said she with an expression of a person who just had to explain someone that 2+2=4.
    “So it is normal for animals and plants to fuse?” asked Jason fascinated. That was so different from anything he ever saw or read about.
    “Of course it’s common for life from…” she trailed off, then suddenly pointed a finger at him. “You are trying to distract me. Want to pump me for information, while not telling me anything about yourself?” she said aghast. Jason was about to defend himself, when he caught a mischievous glint in her eyes.
    “What kind of conniving brute have I met?” continued her acting Kali.
    Jason rolled his eyes, exasperated, and grabbed a roll from her tray. Warm, spice-filled juice filled his mouth. It tasted like a mix between thyme, paprika and pepper. The juicy part was the cheese like substance. Jason chewed, looking straight into Kali’s eyes.
    “Now you steal my food, whatever shall I do.” said she.
    “Fine, fine.” said Jason raising his hands in mock defeat. “Honestly, it’s my first day here. Don’t really have much to tell.”
    “Nuh-uh, you are not getting out of this. Where are you from?” said Kali.
    “Earth.” said Jason, before taking a swig of water.
    “Really? I pegged you for a sherak. I mean you surely pale enough.” Klai laughed at her quip. “Still, never heard of Earth.” said she, when Jason put down the glass.
    “It’s nothing interesting, so it doesn’t stand out.”
    “Sure, it’s easy to forget about one world in several thousand, but surely a database wouldn’t be so forgetful.” from the bracelet on her wrist a screen was projected. There was a “search result:eek:” message on it.
    “You caught me.” said Jason with a forced laugh.
    “So I did.” Kali’s voice had little of her previous playfulness. “Why don’t you tell me the truth. I can really help you if you help me.”
    Having little choice, Jason launched into explanation. He went over everything: from how he had gone to bed drunk and woke up in the library to him being pressed into indentured servitude. Throughout his explanation Kali maintained concerned expression on her face, making all the appropriate noises in all appropriate places.
    “You poor guy. So terrible that the administration would enslave you - a confused newcomer to the wider universe. I mean sure, if someone messed up and they can't pay the fee, they have to work it off. Everybody know that, but still” She patted his hand. “How do you plan to buy yourself out?” Asked she. Seeing his confused look, she continued. “They did mention that you can buy yourself out, right?”
    Jason looked at her blankly.
    “I’ll take it as a no then. It is allowed to earn one's freedom back. Just pay back your debt and you are free to go.”
    “Why didn’t Garuda Doj tell me about it!” exclaimed Jason.
    Kali thought for a moment.
    “Never met him myself, but from what I heard he’s a real moldrot. He was probably making sure you stayed in debt so that he could sell you later for a nice profit.”
    Jason ran his fingers through his hair. Nothing Kali said was a surprise to him. Nothing about their handling of his situation was positive. It seemed like a clear sign to him that they wanted him to stay here and stay miserable.
    “Now, now don’t let it make you purple. I know a thing or two about oppressive higher ups.” Kali looked around and lowered her voice. “Tell you what. I think the two of us can make a nifty profit. What do you say? My plan, your powers, we’ll split the catch half an’ half?”
    Jason was deep in thought. What Kali suggested smelled of something less than legal, but did it really matter? He owed this place nothing. After all, they did nothing but shit on him. He had to do anything in his power to get on top. What difference did it make if he got some cash in a slightly shady way. On top of that, Kali mentioned powers, was she talking about quanting? To say that Jason was interested in learning more was an understatement. And here was a person offering him knowledge and money! Why would he refuse?
    Full of resolve, Jason looked Kali straight into her eyes.
    “Tell me more.”
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
    mightykk likes this.
  10. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    You might want to change termins to terminology, unless your usage is intentional.
    Termins is actually a bona fide word for dead-line, according to wikitionary.org.

    Also isn't it a bit early for him to make a deal, which involves using his 'power'. Shouldn't he need to get a bit of training first? He wouldn't even have known that he had a power if Mossegg hadn't told him.
     
  11. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    I'll change the termin.
    As for him making deals, on one hand I tried and failed to convey that he isn't thinking straight. A lot of stuff happened to him, and he didn't have any opportunity to really unload.
    Plus he didn't agree to anything, he merely expressed interest. If I manage to finish chapter 5 tomorrow, chapter 4 will arrive at approximately the same time as today. If not, then on Saturday.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
  12. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.04
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    A sexy alien babe. Part 2​
    Jason and Kali quickly finished their lunch and headed back into the tree grove. Privacy and space were Kali’s reasons. Jason doubted there was much privacy in a planted grove, but who was he to know anything.
    Once Kali was satisfied with the place - a small, shadowy clearing surrounded by shrubbery and trees, she stopped and turned around to Jason.
    “So, I can see you’re curious and asking yourself “How can I be useful to Kali?” Well listen carefully.” She plopped onto the ground and sat cross-legged and looked at him expectantly.
    “I am not sitting on the ground in white.” said Jason, tugging his white pants.
    “Wow, you’re a dandy, aren’t you?” said Kali. Then she waved her hand in front of her, and stared on the ground expectantly. However, before jason was able to open his mouth, she blushed. Colour of her cheeks darkening from light red to burgundy.
    “Right, silly of me.” said she under her breath. “Well, I guess you’ll have to stand.”
    Jason snorted. So far he was not impressed, as she reminded him of all those “expert-tutors” he ever met. They pretended they knew what they were talking about, but in reality were revealed to be frauds reading off textbooks.
    “When I say power, I mean your negative-probability charge, field to be precise. Did you notice how my attempt to turn the ground into concrete failed?” seeing his nod she continued. “After initial burst of quanting, the charge becomes inverted and probabilities get harder to change. The more impressive the burst is, the harder it is to do quanting afterwards.” Kali saw Jason’s concerned expression hurried to reassure him. “It will balance out soon enough, and you’ll be able to learn it to do it.” said Kali.
    Jason stared at Kali. He felt like he went to a wrong class and ended up in on some quantum physics lecture. He got the gist but he lacked perspective to understand everything.
    “Just explain to me what’s quanting is. We don’t have anything like that where I am from.” said Jason.
    “Nobody knows precisely, but in practical terms it’s ability to affect the likelihood of something to occur. It also has some effect on basic interactions like strong and weak nuclear forces and so on.” she trailed off looking uncertain.
    Jason fixed her with a pointed look. Yep, just like he had expected, she barely knew what she was talking about. He was wasting his time here. He was ready to just walk away.
    Kali seemed to realise the direction of his thoughts.
    “Wait, wait. Sure I don’t know much about academics, but we won’t need it for what I have in mind. Please listen me out.” said Kali.
    “Why should I? You proved your incompetence once. Your confidence is probably bunch of hot air.” said Jason. His excitement quickly shriveled up, he would probably spend time more productively by looking for some version of internet cafe.
    “Look Jason.” Kali got up on her feet. “I’ll be honest. I don’t know much, it’s more than you know, but nothing really impressive. The bottom line is you need singlars, I need singlars. Together we can get those singlars.” said Kali. Her tone was completely serious, as she looked Jason in the eyes.
    After some thought, Jason agreed. Then they started planning.

    ***

    It turned out the dorms area was but a small corner of a monstrously large megastructure. When Jason heard that Veritanis was a ring around a star, he didn’t really comprehend the sheer size. He had no numbers to compare, but from what he understood, each of 9 gigantic sectors, into which the ring was divided, was much larger than Earth. It made him wonder just how 7 trillion sentients coexisted together.
    Each segment was very different, however one of the things that connected them all was a “Divine Corridor”. Contrary to what Jason assumed, it had little to do with religion. It was a free market heaven with negligent regulations, simple rules and breadth of goods that streamed here from all throughout Lenced Universe. It was a space-age Bazaar that catered to every imaginable whim, that stretched across every section. It was an artery through which the lifeblood flowed.
    Jason and Kali pushed and weaved through the masses of aliens. The various smells were in equal measures seductive and revolting, as various aromas mixed creating a unique scent that only places like these can have. Jason was sure - if it wasn’t for Kali dragging him by his arm, he would have gotten lost very quickly. The spinning kaleidoscope of colours was entrancing as no stall or shop was like any other. To add to the variety, sellers were eager to entice the passerbiess with offers of exotic wares that ranged from food and primitive baubles, that natives everywhere tried to sell to tourists, to second-hand tech that would have made the entire Silicon valley salivate.
    Jason didn’t know the value or conversion rates for singlar - local currency, but he was sure that a used waste-reprocessor being sold for the price of 8 sacks of what looked like sweet potatoes was rather cheap. That wasn’t even among the most outrageous of pricings. Still, Jason was curious what local malls would be like?
    Jason had little time to ogle, as Kali continued to pull him. They finally managed to get into a slightly less crowded part of the street when they ducked into an alcove.
    They approached an inconspicuous door which was guarded by a hulking mass of humanoid flesh. Jason was reminded of japanese sumo fighters, if they were five times larger and had a tree bark-like skin. His small black eyes were almost invisible underneath the imposing frontal lobe. His stance exuded readiness and even eagerness for violence.
    Unconcerned, Kali walked up right to her, still dragging Jason. Bouncer took one long look at them, and shifted slightly allowing them passage inside.
    “Thanks Ragda!” cheekily said Kali, as she closed the door behind them.
    “Why did you do it?” whispered Jason.
    “To be polite.” said Kali incredulously, “Seriously, I don’t know what kind of society you come from but I was taught to be polite.”
    “He looked like he wanted to kill us!” Jason was fairly certain of bouncer’s murderous intent.
    “Ragda is a darling. She wouldn’t hurt a fly, unless it was a particularly nasty fly.” scoffed Kali at his concern.
    Jason wasn’t really concerned about the bouncer. The fact it was a “she” was surprising, but he supposed it was his fault for giving in his preconceptions. Who would’ve thought that Hollywood could have filled his head with stereotypes?
    A nervous chuckle escaped his mouth, which didn’t go unnoticed by Kali.
    “It’ll be a sun soak. Stop fidgeting so much.” reproached him Kali. Her words didn’t help him at all.A short explanation of her scheme as well as a primer of quanting didn’t feel enough. The last thing he needed was more trouble. Still, somewhere underneath the worry and anxiety beated a nervous excitement. The same type of feverish thrill that had coursed through Jason’s veins all those years ago when he and his friends ran around doing dumb stuff. Only this time the stakes were exponentially higher.
    After walking through a twisting, dimly-lit corridor they descended into a large area. The air was clogged with sweat and smoke, rot and blood. Raving and hollering masses surrounded a large cage. Two humanoids circled each other, keeping their gazes firmly fixed on their opponent. It was a fight of David and Goliath. One was a massive ape, not dissimilar to the Ape that had caught him, although this one lacked any semblance of clothes or accessories, with long fur hanging unadorned.This brute loomed over its opponent,who seemed more amused than concerned.
    Small humanoid hobbled on stubby legs, showing off his long purple tongue, mocking the Ape. Dressed in grey tunic, the Imp had the look of someone having a great time. Imp kept rubbing his lobe ridges, smearing the blue paint that accentuated them.
    Jason moved to stand closer, eager to see his first quanting fight. Kali stopped him, tightening her grip on him.
    “Not now.” reminded she him, warning apparent in her tone.
    Jason smiled sheepishly. That’s right, if he moved closer the cage would be within his “Inhibited-quanting” range. Through some experimentation they determined that its radius was 10 meters give or take a couple centimetres. Interestingly enough there was a gradual decrease in resistance the further Jason was to the person quanting. So up close Kali was unable to make water spontaneously turn water into ice by reducing waters entropy, but as she stepped away, the more she was able to do.
    Upon this discovery they based their strategy. By carefully keeping his distance Jason would fix the fights. Never stepping too close to the fighting, so as to not stop quanting completely (which would have been too suspicious) but to make it difficult for one of the fighters to quant. Thus guaranteeing the success of their bets.
    At first Jason was concerned about selectiveness. His “field” affected everyone indiscriminately, he had no more control over it as he had over his heart beating. However, Kali was quick to reassure him that most fights were contactless. As when a fighter had no choice but to resort to physical fighting the opponent could quant them down at their leisure. Apparently the fights were quanters got into a stalemate were very rare.
    So if everything went according to plan, Kali and him would be dipping into the betting pool pretty soon.
    “Good old gambling. How lucky am I that my parents don’t see me.” Jason had never been the model son, his rebellious nature clashing with his family's regard for others perception of them. However Jason’s bullheaded resolve to become an architect and not a doctor most certainly didn’t mean he was into degenerate behavior. “I have no choice, I need the money.” Jason hoped this wasn’t the start of the slippery slope he was so often warned about.
    “I gonna check out the odds and the timetable.” said Kali. “Stand right there,” she pointed at one of the columns supporting the high ceiling. “Watch the fight but don’t go anywhere.” she emphasized her words by jabbing her finger in Jason’s gut. Her claw-tipped finger.
    “Hey, watch the claws.” exclaimed Jason, rubbing his stomach.
    “Exactly.” said Kali. Then she turned around and disappeared into the masses, her beast still clinging to her back..
    Confused by Kali’s response, Jason had no reason to do otherwise. So once he reached the column, he turned his attention to watching the fight.
    The fighters had apparently finished their standoff. Suddenly the Ape whipped his arm in the direction of Imp. Sparks of ozone blue streaked from all over their body, concentrating on Ape’s arm. Bolt of lighting moved forth to strike the Imp. The blinding flash seared the image of a lightning between the Ape and the Imp onto Jason’s retina.
    He quickly blinked, trying to get the flashes out. In a heartbeat he saw something shocking. The strike missed! Instead of charred remains of the Imp, there was a line of molten slug couple of meters left of Imp. Unperturbed by the miss, the Ape continued flinging lightnings. Jason shielded his eyes with a hand and paid attention to the Imp, who continued to make faces and chortle at Ape, while bolts of plasma landed anywhere but him. Seemingly exasperated, he spread his hands as if to hug the incoming attacks. Lightings bent and warped, changed their direction and flew back towards the Ape. With a thunderous bang they slammed into him, sending the watching crowd into bloodlusted frenzy.
    The crowd demanded gore: “Boil his blood” “Rip his gonads out” “Flay him to the nerves” were among the tamest suggestions as the sentient creatures from all across the universe indulged in the gift of sapience - senseless cruelty.
    The Ape was unwilling to give the crowd satisfaction of seeing the colour of his guts. His finger twitched and Imp suddenly found himself unable to move. His legs were stuck to the floor, as the ethereal film covered his feet and little bit of floor beneath them.
    Imp spat a large blob of yellow spit or snot at the Ape. Disgusting mix landed on his knee, where it suddenly transformed into translucent liquid that burned right through the flesh. Dissolved flesh sizzled on the floor with a severed leg lying next to it, while the Ape howled in pain.
    “Dad!” Jason heard a screech that got translated into a desperate plea. Jason searched for the source. A younger ape clung to a nearby column looking at the fight, desperation plain on the face.
    The Ape heard his son and released a mighty roar. He slammed his palm on the ground and wave of distortion spread. The spilled liquids turned to brown gas that engulfed and clung to the Imp. Jason couldn’t see what went on inside the cloud but the heart-wrenching screams of pain could be heard even over the gleeful noise of the spectators.
    The Ape started to rise, grunting from pain. Jason couldn’t imagine the stress he was suffering: surviving several lightning strikes, and having one of the limbs melted off. Yet he refused to stay down. With fire in his dark eyes, Ape positioned himself to peer straight on the Imp, who was bent, retching dark wine-coloured liquid on the floor. The bubble of dark gas greatly reduced, now showed the Imp, whose once pale lilac skin now was blackened with strands of muscles falling on the floor.
    Jason felt sick in the stomach, bile threatening to force its way out. That was beyond anything he had ever seen or expected from this fight. He had never been very good at handling gore, and now he could almost taste the metallic tang of burnt blood. His face was chalk-white pale. What was happening was deeply repulsive, and yet… Some primal part of him, a leftover remnants of savage hunger that drove humanity’s ancestors to kill everything that opposed them, enjoyed the fight. Watching two monsters that wouldn’t have been out of place in some sci-fi horror flick was...awesome! Jason couldn’t tear his gaze away from the fight.
    Despite sitting on his leg, the Ape still towered over the Imp. He furrowed his brows in concentration. A ripple of distortion surged forth and slammed into the Imp. Something strange changed in the air around the Imp, whereas the brown gas was transmuted into a neon orange moisture.
    Time slowed down for Jason as he watched what was happening. The Ape raised his fist with a triumphant roar. Neon blue sparks gathered around his furry fist, when suddenly the Imp jumped and slammed into the Ape. His eyes widened in panic and before he was able to slap the Imp away the sparks fell to the cloud.
    Surge of flames exploded, engulfing both fighters. Smoke flooded the spectators. Jason’s eyes stung and no matter how much he coughed he couldn’t get a clean breath in.
    When the smoke cleared, Jason saw the aftermath of the explosion. Imp’s prone form laid motionless on the floor, his charred remains smoking. The Ape, on the other hand, did not get away that easily. His fur was burning with bright orange blaze, while he rolled around on the ground, fruitlessly trying to smother the flame.
    Ape’s son leaped from the column. He started forcing his way through the crowd. Short and young he might had been, but he packed quite a bit of muscle as he had little trouble getting his way. He was close to the door into the cage, when suddenly a large hand grabbed him. Tall, milk-white humanoid, wrapped in midnight black robes stopped the young Ape. No matter how much young Ape struggled, he couldn’t free himself from the grasp of lean, bony hands.
    “I hope he dies quickly.” said Kali behind Jason, who jumped in surprise.
    “How can you say that?” exclaimed Jason, turning towards her. “Why is no one helping him?”
    “Those are the rules.You either walk out on your own, or you don’t leave at all.” said Kali, attentively examining the column. She doggedly kept her gaze on anything but the cage, flinching every time howls of the Ape reached them.
    “That’s horrible. Why did you brought me to this madhouse?” Jason furiously whispered. Deeply unpleasant shivers running across his skin.
    “Do you really think our scheme would have a yota of a chance in a more proper fight club? This place has no money for a decent quanting cage, the one here just prevents active quanting from outside.” Her words may have been defensive, but the guilt was still apparent on her face.
    Jason opened his mouth to argue further, but he decided against it. Kali didn’t seem to enjoy being here, screams of pain bringing her no pleasure. He should cut her some slack. He agreed to shady, he got it.
    They heard commentators voice as the raving crowd quieted down. No noises of pain could be heard.
    “Well, what a thing! Not often do we have fighters both go down, truly a battle of spite. Neither combatant wished to go, knowing the other will walk away. Only fair that they both die.” said a cheerful voice. “Hey would you look at that, it looks like the big and hairy had a slightly smaller but no less hairy progeny.” several lights highlighted the child Ape, who was looking at his father’s body. “Thinking about entering the cage in a couple of years? Your father was a disappointment, but maybe you’ll make the old chimp proud by doing a wee bit better, eh?” The crowd laughed jeered, while Jason looked at the floor of the cage.
    The Ape’s corpse laid next to the door, his scorched fingers clutching the bars. What was he trying to do? He must have realised he couldn’t stop the burning, so he tried to...what? Reach out for his son? That was unlikely to say the least.
    “Why didn’t he try to stop the burning. I mean, he could’ve stopped the oxygen reaction and quenched combustion, at least.” asked Jason.
    “My best guess is that he was in too much pain to concentrate.” replied Kali, still doing her best to avoid the sight of dead bodies. Said bodies were actually already being wheeled away.
    “Where are they taking them?” asked Jason.
    “Morgue of course.” scoffed Kali. Some of her attitude returning.
    Before Jason was able to ask anything else, the next fight was announced.
    “Well, it’s your suntime, Jason.” said Kali. “Here’s what you gotta do…”
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
    mightykk likes this.
  13. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Depending on size, a ring world could have the surface area of 3 million earths. If the population is 7 trillion, the population density works out to about 1 person per 220 sq KM.

    It's reasonable that crowds would congregate at a market, but this should result in corresponding empty areas.

    Surface area of Earth: 5.1 x 10^8 km^2

    5.1 x 10^8 km^2 x 3 million / 7 trillion = 220 km^2

    The narration was a bit choppy. If you plan to re-write, I suggest moving the section where the quanting mechanics are explained to the top, and then have them go to the fight club. Some of the suspense will be lost but it would give the narrative a logical flow.
     
    IBulit likes this.
  14. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Yeah population spread is very uneven.



    I am curious how the first fight scene I've ever written turned out. What do you guys think?
     
  15. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    It's was good.:)
     
  16. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.05
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Sexy alien babe. Part 3​
    Kali attentively watched as Jason moved to get into the position. This would be the test run of their scheme. Kali bit her lip. She really hoped it would succeed. She had some savings to tide her over, but still she needed money and soon. If she wouldn’t deliver, he would be angry. Her shoulder throbbed with angry pain from the last time she failed. She couldn’t go to medbay without permission, and private hospitals were way outside her pocket.
    Kali lost all hope, and was seriously considering running, when she caught wind of the rumours. A humanoid spontaneously materialising straight from another corner of the Universe! That was unheard of. An arthropod or mollusk could pull of something like that, sure, but everyone knew “Quanting Gradation”. Humanoids like her or Jason were near the bottom. The only ones with lower potential were those high-end biocomputers that some races started experimenting with. So it was understandable that Kali’s curiosity was peaked.
    She had set off to find this anomaly. She had known that others would also be looking for it, power hungry molders that they were. However Kali had always been a top notch tracker. So it didn’t take too long to find him. When she first saw him, she was relieved - he was sitting alone. So no one had discovered who he was! However momentary relief got replaced by apprehension. He didn’t look like much. Too pale, with dirt coloured hair and on top of all that he was unnaturally, grotesquely tall for a male, and Kali was sure he was male. She knew it was unfair to judge him by the standards of her species, and she saw worse many times before, but she couldn’t help it. The point was, he most certainly didn’t look like a mighty quanter from beyond the known Universe. She got the wrong guy.
    Confused, nervous expression on his face didn’t help. Kali was disappointed. She had spent six hours looking for him for what looked like a dud. She almost walked away, there was still time to come up with something to solve her problems.
    However some niggling feeling in her guts made her stay. She wasn’t disappointed. He truly was a paradoxical quanter. Surprisingly, it didn’t take too much time convincing him to go along with her plan. Plan she was coming up on the fly.
    She just hoped it didn’t rot in her hands. Jason seemed like a good person, and she felt a little bit guilty for playing him. She didn’t want to get him into trouble.
    Her thoughts were interrupted by a commentator announcing the next fight. It was showtime.

    ***

    Jason had no time to worry about being caught or failing to do his part. No, right now his biggest concern was staying in place and not being swept away by a constantly shifting crowd of spectators. The ring of columns was too far away from the cage. So Jason had no choice but to remain afloat in this rolling sea of alien flesh.
    The biggest downside, if one didn’t count the pungent smell, was the overall chaos. Constantly this arm or that leg would bump into Jason, making him stumble. At least in most cases aliens were clothed or dry. A couple of times a cold, wet bodies brushed past Jason, leaving him with with back coated with cold slime.
    So understandably, keeping an eye on the fight proved to be a challenge. However Jason did what he could. He was determined to earn as much as he could.
    The odds weren’t the best - 1:2, so with Kali betting 100 singlars, and his cut being 40 % from the extra money, he would get 40 singlars. Jason had only a vaguest impression on the worth of currency, but having any money would be good. According to Kali, the odds were going to increase the further into the brackets they go. Jason couldn’t wait. He was both apprehensive and excited to see the more intense matches. Jason could only imagine what they would be like.
    This particular fight was not much of a spectacle. An elastically rotund alien, that wore a bowtie of all things, named Gantz, advanced steadily on his opponent. So called “Lady Bluesun” was the same height as Gantz but whereas he was a water balloon on the verge of bursting, she was a compact predator of lean muscles and elegant speed. Her azure scales glowed ominously,flimsy feathered strings adorned her body. It reminded Jason of type of clothes brazilian dancers wore for their festivals.
    With several quick victories under her belt, she was a sure victor against a newcomer like Gantz. Well, she should have been, if it wasn’t for Jason whose bet was riding on Gantz. With her quanting inhibited, she was hard pressed to push back against onslaught of Gantz.
    Despite the way he looked, Gantz was a confident quanter. Unlike the previous combatants, he favoured subtler forms of quanting. There were neither flashes of light, nor crazy transmutations of matter. Gantz seemed like a fair hand at temperature manipulation. He kept moving heat from one place to another, reducing temperatures to sub zero levels. Jason had no idea what Lady Bluesun was doing, as there were no apparent signs of quanting, but she managed to preserve unfrozen and unboiled state of her body.
    However she was still disadvantaged. As he advanced, Gantz kept pressing her into a corner, forcing Jason to move accordingly. It seemed Gantz’s compatriots were here to cheer him on, as Jason was now surrounded by a large group of short fat humanoids. Their squeaky, high-pitched voices were not as disturbing as the way they looked. They wore different clothes, but their shouts, movements, expressions of their faces were all the same. Like the stereotype come alive, they cheered and jeered like one, with no gaps between reactions.
    Jason was so distracted and repulsed, he almost lost track of the fight. Fortunately, nothing of game changing happened, and Jason turned just in time to see a massive guillotine blade of frozen air forming above the Lady Blueson. At the same time the floor underneath her feet reddened and started to smoke. She jumped up, startled by the heat, right into the path of the blade, which cleaved her in half .
    Bisected body fell on the floor, spilled blood immediately boiling on the surface. Lady Blueson’s lower half still twitched, not yet aware that it was dead. So the tail continued to flap, smearing blood all over.
    Gantz released a howl of victory...simultaneously with his cheering squad that surrounded Jason. They were drunk on victory, they jumped and hollered, wave hands and shouted, all as one. Jason was Odysseus - alone in the middle of dark ocean, whose waves threatened to swallow him whole. For the first time
    “Enough is enough” Jason had no desire to remain here, so he looked for a place to wait for the next fight. He pushed his way through, too repulsed and sick in his stomach to care for propriety, he moved straight forward. He expected to elbow and shove his way through. He was wrong. Instead of solid mass of meat and bone, he had to waddle through soft, malleable swaths of flesh that parted easily. He was walking through something or rather someones who had the consistency of liquid jelly.
    Jason gritted his teeth and picked up the pace, feeling vomit rising. He barely reached a bin in time to retch his stomach out. He puked his meagre lunch out, then came the stomach bile.
    Jason wiped his mouth, white fabric of his t-shirt was already stained with a wide variety of fluids. He hoped most of them weren’t bodily fluids.
    A comforting hand grabbed his shoulders.
    “Are you fine?” asked Kali, who apparently approached him when he was puking his guts out.
    “Peachy.” Jason breathed out. “Why are you here? I thought we aren’t to meet up until the fifth fight is over, to not raise suspicions.
    “Just thought to cheer you up. You look ill.” She glanced over Jason’s shoulder. “Ah, I see. Nothing shameful about being spooked by jenilians.” Kali shuddered, “creepy guey bastards. Still we can’t have you being so shaken. We can stop now, consider this a successful test run, and come back later when you are well rested.”
    Irritation bubbled inside Jason. The last thing he wanted was her looking down on him.
    “I am fine. I can do this.” Jason winced as pain surged through his brain. Kali was looking at him dubiously. After a moment of silence she said softly.
    “You are obviously not fine. Why are you trying to run yourself yellow in your first day?”
    Jason stared at her incredulously. Was she kidding? She knew full well what his circumstances were, and yet she asked him this. Jason was starting to get irritated. Everyone here was looking down on him, putting him down for not knowing all their little facts.
    Jason shrugged Kali’s hand off. Luckily the commentator announced the start of the next fight.
    “Just do your part and I’ll do mine. Don’t screw up.” scoffed Jason, and stalked back closer to the cage, carefully avoiding the “jenilian” group.
    Next several fights passed by almost routinely. Commentator announced fighters, they fought and someone died. Jason was starting to feel rather numb. Guts and gore didn’t seem so shocking, now that he saw it several times. It was starting to be almost too easy to disconnect aliens from someone he was supposed to feel empathy for. Especially when some of them looked the way they did.
    Jason wasn’t really concerned. His thoughts were on the prize. Everything was going well, when suddenly an object hit hm in the head. Startled, Jason turned to look in the direction projectile came from. Only to see Kali, as discreetly as she could, waving him over. Jason frowned, they had one more fight to fox, before they agreed to leave. What sort of stunt was she trying to pull?
    Suddenly, two burly, uniformed humanoids grabbed her by her armpits and started walking away. Jason saw her struggle for a moment before seemingly giving up. Second later he could no longer see them.


    A bit shorter than usually, had to cut out almost a thousand words when i realised i was writng a meaningless fight scene for the sake of one rather than for any practical purposes, that would drive the plot or the characters.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
    mightykk likes this.
  17. mightykk

    mightykk Getting some practice in, huh?

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    The POV change did a lot of world building. So is rigging fights just a way to feel out Jason? What does Kali really want with him. Anomaly or not, there seems to be no shortage of Quanters, considering this society allows them to be killed in pit fights.
     
  18. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    First time writing different POV's, don't if i was able to convey differences in their voices.
    As for her interest in Jason...without spoiling the rest of this arc, she is in pretty tight situation herself (tried hinting in her POV) and Jason at first was a curiousity, and after hearing his precise circumstances she saw an opportunity. Also, it wasn't his quanting she was interested in. It was the inhibition-field, wich is proportional to the strength of initial burst of quanting. So for most cases of humanoids it would be too small to be useful.
    As for apparent disregard for death of Quanters... all i can say now is that dynamics of quanters in the Universe in general and Veritanis in particular will be revealed more and more as story gets into actual Academy set of arcs.
     
  19. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.06
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    A sexy alien babe. Part 4​
    Kali was in trouble, and she knew it. As time went on, the feeling that something was weird, that they were observed, had been steadily increasing. She ignored it of course, everything was going according to plan, and she netted a nice amount of money. Nothing to write home about, but a significant sum nevertheless. However before the last fight was announced, a worrisome feeling spiked in her guts.
    Kali always followed her guts. It had gotten her out of some very bad situations. Alas the temptation of staying and quadrupling her money prevailed. After all, when would an opportunity like this present itself? Jason’s inhibition field was bound to dissipate sooner rather than later. And speaking of Jason, she needed money almost as much as Kali did. He was in a pretty rough position. It wouldn’t have been fair of Kali to deprive him of some additional cash, just because Kali got a little spooked. She was probably just nervous, it was her first time putting a scheme together. She usually just did what she was told and got her cut. So she stayed, and didn’t recall Jason.
    She had been wrong to do so. Surprisingly, two hulking brutes reached her with neither her nor her pet noticing them. So it came as quite a surprise, when she was grabbed and dragged her off somewhere.
    She threw a desperate look in the direction where she had last seen Jason. She wasn’t sure if he saw her, before she was carried into another room.
    Kali’s heart rapidly beat. Blood hammered in her ears. She was scared, and what was worse she had no idea what was going on. She had never done anything in this establishment, and today she was sure they didn’t do anything too extreme or noticeable. Could it be Dai’lir? But why would he do it? She still had time before she was supposed to deliver.
    Calm down, Kaliandra P’tolyansky’ came the memory of of her mother. Years ago, long before she scraped together enough money to bribe a freight ship captain to ferry her through the Lense and to Veritanis, she used to get panicked from everything. However, regardless of how scared she was, her mother never failed to calm her down. So it was all the more devastating, when the brothel with her mother inside got burnt down.
    Kali took a deep breath. There was no need to worry. She would roll with the punches, and who knows? Maybe there’ll be an opportunity ahead.
    So when the door at the end of the corridor opened, she was brought in with a calm smile on her face.
    Kali almost convinced herself that the smile wasn’t fake.
    The room was very spacious, despite the heavy antique furniture, there was nothing stifling about the room. Kali knew that they were deep underground and yet the waning light of the evening sun streamed through large, ceiling-high windows, showing the view of the azure waters of what appeared to be either lake or a sea with white mountains in the distance. Kali couldn’t help but be impressed. Whomever owned this room had singlars to throw around on frivolities like this. It must have cost a fortune to have light from some of the more...rural sections of Veritanis, pouring from the windows.
    Expensive-looking rugs covered the floor and those few parts of the walls that weren’t concealed by ornate bookshelves with leather-bound books on it. A smell of spices and flower-scented candles permeated the room. After hours spent breathing in sweat-soaked air, this fancy odor made her nose itch. She hoped she wouldn’t sneeze, even breathing on all this money seemed wrong.
    Brutes threw her on the floor. Surprised, Kali failed to land on her feet. Instead of standing proudly, fully in control, she was now lying on the carpet. Long, coloured fibers tickled her nose. Mortified and annoyed Kali quickly rose to her feet, rubbing her nose.
    “No,no! Why did you threw her on my new shachinian rug! It was only recently delivered to me. Now I’ll have to get rid of it.” came the growling low voice from somewhere within the rows of bookcases. “I absolutely can’t have her sweat and body particles rubbed into my rug.”
    Kali was perturbed by the contrast between the whiny words and serious sound of voice. Brutes didn’t seem to have any reaction as they turned around and exited the room. Kali was uncertain what to do, so she did what she was good at - talk.
    “Hello, name’s Kali. Guess you’ve heard of me, if you decided to invite me. Gotta say I am impressed. I’ve been to palaces that are poorer than this room. May I have your name?”
    Silenced stretched, with only the sound of her beating heart, and air rushing through her clenched teeth. Finally a figure stepped out from around the corner.
    Wait…
    What?
    In front of her stood a yellow-skinned, stout humanoid of slightly shorter than Kali’s stature. He was dressed in orange, loose-fitting robes. He was holding an old book in his hands, unconsciously flipping through the pages.
    There was no doubt. Small horns on the forehead and a constantly changing expression on the face made it all the more obvious that this was a J’anirian.
    Kali shivered. Destruction of their homeworld was one of the marks of shame, that distinguished her people. Centuries ago, after conflicts sparked between their governments during the meeting on Veritanis, her people purchased the right of passage to the J’anirian star system. The war was short and brutal. J’anirians quickly lost the battle for their system’s Lense. With no way to go, and with no reinforcement or resupplies, they were overwhelmed and overrun. Kassan dynasty that ruled Kali’s people at that time, had no mercy for the defeated. Heavy orbital bombardment and every type of weaponry known to humanoid species were used on the planet. After months of hell pouring down the skies, J’anirians were all but wiped out. Satisfied with what was done, Kassan fleet returned back to the Veritanis, and through their systems Lense, back home.
    What few survivors remained, were quick to die from the miasms of poisoned planet. Biological weaponry employed, was too effective at wiping out life. In short order, the only J’anirians remaining, were those that were on Veritanis or other planets during the war. A small yet fierce community of expats survived, harbouring a deep seated hatred against her people. Community that regularly produced insane murderers that went on a killing spree when they weren’t twisting things around to steal people’s money.
    And now she was in the clutches of one of them.
    Oh shit.
    A bead of sweat trailed down from her forehead to the chin and onto the floor. So that was moldbad, worse than that. She heard rumours about what those crazies did to her people, when they thought they could get away with it.
    And this one could get away with a lot by the looks of things. They were in a private, sound proof room, with two of his grunts guarding them. No one knew where she was, save for Jason and what was he going to do? Try to pout extra hard to get some pity help! She couldn’t rely on him doing anything useful to help her.
    Kali didn't notice she was subconsciously walking backwards toward the door, until she felt the smooth surface of the door.
    “Miss P’tolyansky, please have a seat.” J’anirian gestured to the pair of plush armchairs with a small table between.
    Kali numbly complied. Initial shock of terror passed, and she could feel reason slowly coming back. It didn’t look like she was going to baked into a pie just yet.
    “Allow me to introduce myself - M’Bali. Do you want anything to drink.” asked he with a geniality that Kali did not expect.
    “I guess water would be nice.” replied Kali, just to be polite. If he tried to spike it, she would be able to sniff it out.
    It was hard to tell whether M’Bali knew her thoughts or his smirk was just typical J’anirian loose-muscled face. Suddenly a tall water-filled glass materialised in the air in front of her. A strong smell of seafood hit her, making her scrunch her face up in disgust. She raised a questioning look at M’Bali. A series of expressions rapidly replaced themselves on M’Bali’s face: amusement, fear, excitement, anger, fear, satisfaction, contempt. Fool was the one who trusted J’anirian face, and Kali had no intention to be that fool. So she took the glass and tasted the water. It was cool, fresh and tasted just like a normal water was supposed to. Kali started cautiously sipping water.
    “Thank you.” said Kali politely.
    M’Bali nodded graciously.
    “Now that we are calm and seated why don’t we discuss some business.” said he.
    Kali tensed. Everybody knew that when a J’anirian wanted to “discuss business” you ran. If you didn’t, you’d end up without clothes, deeply in debt and thinking that a J’anirian was your best friend.
    Alas, retreat was not an option. She had to hear him out.
    “I am always interested in doing business with someone as distinguished as you.” said Kali, hoping to appease his ego.
    Fury, anger, hatred, amusement, and laughter appeared and vanished from his face in a blink of an eye. One would think J’anirians who wore their emotions plain on their faces would be terrible liars, yet it wasn’t true. The trick was distinguishing between the real and false emotions.
    “You don’t need to flatter me. I rather doubt that you have ever heard about me.” said M’Bali.
    Kali remained silent, having nothing to say.
    “Fine then, let’s cut to the chase. You might not this know but I had dealings with your boss. It was very profitable but unfortunately he decided to play dirty, and cheat me out of my slice of pie.” said M’Bali.
    His words made Kali worry. A lot! The patron of her expat community - Stevrum Yupesskiy was a man not to be crossed. After his meteoric rise through the community and the Academia he firmly established himself as the big boss everyone asked for favour.
    Kali was one of the many expats who having nothing and no one to turn to, arrived to his doorstep begging. Kali never regretted anything more in her life. After only several local months she was sick of working for him.
    Kali was so tired of it. With every little task, errand and task she felt herself getting more and more into his web. Once again her damaged shoulder reminded of her punishment for failure.
    “Now I am big believer in justice. I merely want everything to be fair. Will you help me?” said M’Bali.
    Kali sat there frozen. She wasn’t stupid. She was no genius sure, but she could read between the lines. M’Bali was trying to make her his snitch. How many people just like her did this J’anirian invite to this room and seduced to his side?
    Now Stevrum was a moldball, but he had the same blood running through his veins. He was J’anirian!
    Kali hoped her feelings weren’t apparent in her body language.
    “Of course I’ll make it worth your while.” said M’Bali, smirking and frowning in quick succession. “I heard Stevrum is rather demanding of his honey girls and boys.” he clicked his fingers and a neat, thick stack of singlars materialised in the centre of the table. Once again odor of rotting fish and algae slammed into her. “This should be enough to reach your quota, there will be even some left! Isn’t nice, you could buy something nice. You know, to celebrate the start of a wonderful working relationship.”
    Kali glanced down at the money. The rotson wasn’t lying. It would cover her quite nicely.
    She bit her lip.
    It would be beyond stupid to take that money. Whatever was going on between the two moldballs was none of her business. If she was lucky, the two would kill each other. Wouldn’t that be nice… Kali allowed herself a heartbeat of daydreaming.
    A blissful heartbeat that ended all too soon.
    “Ah, I can’t do accept your generous offer. I am afraid I have nothing to offer in exchange.” said Kali, fruitlessly hoping that M’Bali would accept her refusal and let her go.
    No such luck.
    “Don’t be so hard on yourself, I believe you to be a very capable individual.” his tone was so genial, so sincere. Kali almost wanted to believe his words. “On top of that I am not going to ask you anything extraordinary. Just trifle little errands. A rumor here, a delivery there. Nothing someone like you can’t do.” said M’Bali, sounding almost like a caring mentor, encouraging his pupil. “ Of course if we don’t come to an agreement I’ll have to do something about your illegal activities in my club.”
    Blood suddenly rushed away from her head. Lightheaded from the fright, Kali tried to sound nonchalant.
    “What illegal activities? I just came here to watch some quanting blood shedding. Play some odds as well.” she awkwardly patted her pocket, where she had some loose change. The actual winnings were concealed much better.
    “I would never begrudge anyone enjoying themselves in my pride and joy,” said M’Bali, apparently proud of his club. Then his entire demeanor changed, his face quivering with barely restrained fury. “ However, no one interferes in the fights, not me and most certainly some pospolitian whore.” as quickly as anger came, it left. “I don’t quite know how you managed it, but winning 6 times in a row is quite impressive. Especially considering that in 4 out of 6 fights the combatants were so uneven that one would have to be insane to pick a darkhorse. Yet, you did it 4 times and it shockingly paid off.” He lowered his voice. “ Now I admit to not knowing how you managed to pull this off. Nevertheless you gave me more than enough reason to treat you way more roughly than I did. So why don’t we just come to an agreement and I’ll forget this has ever happened.”
    Kali gulped as M’Bali’s cold dark eyes bore into her.


    ***
    Jason was worried, ill and had absolutely no idea what to do. Kali disappeared somewhere, and no one could properly explain who the brutes, that captured Kali, were. It was obvious that they didn’t leave the club. The first thing Jason done, was to run up to the bouncer and ask whether Kali left. While all he got was a grunt, it was an undoubtedly a “No” grunt.
    So she was still inside. There were plenty of private rooms, alcoves and platforms. It was impossible to know where she was. Jason tried to poke into whatever places he was allowed into. It bore no fruit, save for, perhaps, getting into some embarrassing situations. Jason shuddered, remembering one of the restrooms he barged in. He was never much of a farm kind of guy, and this incident only reaffirmed his disdain for manure-filled barns. He just hoped the smell didn’t rub into his clothes.
    Jason was starting to get nervous. He could not find Kali, and from what he had seen, the thugs that kidnapped her were not friendly.
    Without warning, Kali slammed into him, grabbed his arm and started pulling him towards the exit. Jason noticed she her pet was absent. Before he could ask what the hell happened, he heard outraged shouts from behind them. He turned his head to see what the commotion was. Two thugs from earlier were pushing their way through the crowd, their were firmly fixed on Kali and him.
    “Move faster!” came the voice of Kali.
    With a sinking sensation in his stomach, Jason realised: ‘We’re about to be fucked.’
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
  20. IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Had to take more hours at my work, so I don't if I will be able to post more before Saturday.
     
  21. Threadmarks: Chapter 1.07
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    A sexy alien babe. Part 5​
    It was official - Jason hated being chased. Twice in what felt like a day some weird-fucking aliens tried to catch him. At least this time he might have deserved it. Not that it changed much. It was no time to think but run, pushing oxygen down the lungs. Kali was adamant at running as fast they could. No matter what they did to shake the brutes of their trail, brutes were relentless in their pursuit. They were running for quite some time now, past the stalls and shops, past the merchants peddling their wares. Several times they almost hit the bizarrely primitive carts that were towed by beasts.
    Jason was so tired.
    It was a long day. He barely ate, and what he ate he threw up. His face pale, and cold sweat dripping, Jason ran fueling all his exhaustion into a desperation. Desperation that drove him to run further than he could.
    Jason was just so exhausted.
    Through the haze of sore muscles and aching lungs Jason refocused on the Kali. Whatever happened to her, it was nothing good. Her clothes were torn, barely managing to keep her decent. Yellow bruises were blossoming on her bared skin. And that critter of hers “Kershi”… He was also missing. What a pity.
    Still the question of what happened refused to abandon his mind. What did Kali do wrong? Was it even related to what they were doing? Questions that demanded answers, but time was not right.
    Finally Kali turned one too many corners wrong. They all but slammed into a wall that cut off the passageway. They were in a dead end with heaps of trash and old containers strewn around. Jason gagged once he smelled the odor, for once he was grateful that he ate so little. There was no reason to empty his stomach for the second time.
    It seemed Kali didn’t share his enthusiasm. Her panic was briefly replaced by disgust as she herself smelled the wretch of back alley. She soon recovered her composure and pushed Jason into the mounts of trash. Well she tried to. Despite his feeble state Jason had no desire to be pushed around. So he stood his ground, reducing Kali’s efforts to merely making him wobble for a bit.
    “The fuck are doing?” Jason exclaimed.
    “Quick, you must hide somewhere.” Kali was looking at various articles of trash that were abundant there. She paused before a particularly large container. “That might do. Help me open it up!”
    Jason was not eager to dump dive, but he did hope to avoid beating.
    Together, they lifted the hood of the container. There was some foul-smelling sludge inside. And just enough space for two.
    “C’mon they’ll be here soon, get inside.” Kali hurried him, while looking out for their pursuers. “I’ll keep the lip open.”
    Jason hesitated briefly, almost offering Kali to go first. But then again she was a big girl. If she wanted to place herself in greater danger, who was he to argue.
    He started climbing up the container, smearing dirt on his once pristine white clothing.
    “Stop, you fraggots.” came the gravely shout from the other end of the alley. Brutes were breathing hard, their faces red with exhaustion. They clutched heavy clubs in their paws. After a momentary pause, they started advancing on Jason and Kali, swinging the cubs with clear intent.
    Kali dashed away from the container to grab a metal bar that stuck out of the trash mound. She quickly swung it to deflect the blow that would have cracked her head like an egg for breakfast. Instead she was merely sent tumbling to the ground. Kick from the brute slammed her into the wall. She moaned pitifully as blood dribbled from her split lip.
    Jason was torn. He wasn’t going to let that bastard kill Kali, but he had his own hulking mass of problems about obliterate. Making a split second decision he jumped, hoping to sail over the bastard as he collided with the container.
    It worked, somewhat.
    He successfully avoided being flattened by the brute, but screwed up the landing. He landed hard on his shoulder. He heard a sharp crack, and only adrenaline and shock keeping throbbing pain at bay. Jason rose to his knees, wincing at his now useless arm. He stared dully at an oncoming foe.
    He was tired. Tired of this world pushing him down. Tired of it placing obstacles at his every step. He took every bit of anger, spite and greed fueling his strike. With a defiant cry he grabbed metal rod that Kali lost and jumped. He aimed for the head, swung widely and struck.
    Two things happened at once. Brute buried his fist in Jason’s stomach. The strength of the blow forcing the precious air out of his lungs. The edges of his vision darkened and sparks clouded his mind's eye. However that wasn’t enough as Jason's heavy rod collided with brute’s temple. He dropped like a sack of potatoes, bluish blood slowly forming a puddle, that would have looked like a cocktail if the empty eyes didn't stare at the sky aimlessly.
    Jason looked at the body wide-eyed. ‘Did...Did I just kill someone?’
    He hadn't. After a second of perfect silence ringing in his ears, Jason saw brute's chest laboriously rise. It was as if it was struggling to lift the heavy mass of bone and muscle.
    That’s good. I am not a killer. Despite everything that happened I won't cross that line.’
    Jason knew that all his bravado of not caring of the aliens’ death was just that - bravado. Pompous words of an arrogant, stressed out prick. Well that was a nice realisation. Nice to know he wasn't a terrible person!
    Jason's bout of self congratulation didn't last long. As a matter of fact it was cut short rather quickly as a shadow loomed over Jason. A deep shudder ran along his spine as he realised something he really should have kept in mind.
    There were two of them.
    Quick as a spasm, Jason tried to put as much distance between himself and the second brute as he was possible. Brute was just fast enough to grab Jason's arm in a grip that promised to make dust out of his bones.
    Tide of panic flooded Jason's mind. He tried to hit right into his nauseating face, but failed. Brute intercepted the improvised metal bar. He effortlessly wrenched it out of Jason's grasp, making Jason regret, for what seemed like a thousandth time, skipping high school P.E.
    Brute raised the rod, its shadow blocking what few sun rays that reached this gutter. His gaze promised neither mercy nor rage. It was completely apathetic. Like guillotine's blade about to fall on person's neck. There was no thought, no consideration for hopes and feeling of a fellow person. Just a cold knowledge of its purpose and stalwart resolve to see its completion.
    Later, Jason would say that he continued to look his executioner straight into eyes, maintaining dignity even at the sight of inglorious death. However it would be a shameful lie. Almost against his will, he closed his eyes. Like a child pretending to be invisible in the vain hope of trouble losing you. There was no place such naiveté in the real world.
    However sometimes.
    Very rarely.
    It was possible for a miracle to occur.
    “Tug.” Kali’s ferocious shout snapped Jason right out. He reacted purely on instinct, without any thought to the reason for such action.
    So tug he did.
    That turned out to be a right decision. Frost that wasn't there a heartbeat ago coalesced into thin yet strong ice sheet. Bereft of any friction, Brute's legs couldn't help him when Jason's jerk destroyed Brute's balance. He lost his footing and so a 200 kilogrammes of solid alien muscle collapsed into the floor sending a sizable quake throughout the neighborhood. Thankfully, the fall loosened his grip, allowing Jason to escape.
    Alas Jason had no time to celebrate. Brute was still conscious and was already trying to get up. His eyes bore into Jason with very human like intensity.
    “Don't stand like a tree.” Kali said, pushing him out of the alley. “We are close. If we hurry, we'll be safe from them soon.”
    “Close to what? Could you please explain me anything!” Jason said, as they resumed running.
    “There are places where they can't go. Once we are there I'll tell you.” She replied, carefully pacing her breath.
    Jason could see she was running through pain, as her hands kept instinctively touching her stomach. Jason was no doctor, but even he could tell that she would be very lucky if she wasn't internally bleeding right now.
    “That was stupid.” Kali said. She seemingly felt his questioning gaze, elaborated. “Killing one of them. There will be loads of trouble.”
    “I didn't kill him.” Jason said under his breath. “I checked, his chest rose and fell. He was breathing.” Jason finished defensively.
    “Good.” Kali's relief was palpable.
    That was the end of their conversation. Neither had time or breath to spare. It was fortunate that the gates to the market were unguarded. Although it took some time but they finally managed to squeeze through the endless river people leaving the market.
    Once they were in sight of academy, Kali fell on the grassy ground and just laid there relaxing in the blue foliage. She closed her eyes and just breathed in and out, letting out the tension accumulated during the run.
    Jason looked around to check for pursuit. There was none. Some passersbys didn't spare them so much as a second glance. With a deep sigh, Jason sunk to the ground and pressed his back against the tree. He could taste the stomach acid. Running did his stomach no favours. But now he could actually rest without worrying.
    The period of silence was short-lived, as Jason quickly grew hungry for answers. He nudged motionless Kali with his foot.
    “So I guess Academy grounds are forbidden territory for those mooks?” Jason asked.
    “Yep. It's not their territory and they could have ended up in a heap of rot if they entered.” Kali said, vaguely waving her hand, with eyes still closed.
    “Territory? There is a gang operating out of academy, and administration does nothing about it?” Jason asked incredulously. That was... actually it wouldn't surprise him. Back home, dorms and university grounds were rife with all sorts of shady stuff. Jason never participated of course, but he heard some things from the grapevine. Things never went further than drugs, rumors said. But it was just shady or maybe desperate students trying earn a buck. Jason never seen anything to suggest large scale organised crime.
    “What made you think they do nothing? They take Stevrum's money and don't make any fuss as long as nothing extreme happens.” Kali replied after finally opening her eyes and sitting up.
    “Who is Stevrum's?” Jason asked, wriggling to sit more comfortably.
    “You'll be introduced to him soon enough.” An unknown voice came from behind Jason.
    At the sound of it Kali went rigid, her eyes darted to look over Jason's shoulder.
    “Hello, Unoch.” She said, her voice nervous and tired in equal measure.
    “Boss wants to have a talk with you and I am sure he will be delighted to meet your new friend.” Unoch said, giving both Jason and Kali an impassive glare. “So I suggest you get up and get moving.” After a minute pause he added. “I do hope you were able to get enough money by now. Something tells me you’ll need everything you have to soften the inevitable blow.”
    Kali winced.
    “Is it that bad?” Kali said.
    Jason must have been getting woozy from all the stress of the day. There was no way Kali was being timid. He blinked couple of times to get haze out of sight. Nope, she was still acting very apprehensive.
    Well, none of his business.
    Kali and him stood up and started following Unoch, who was walking in the direction of the looming buildings with a poise of dignified indifference. Without complaints Kali followed him. Jason was struck by indecision. He didn’t have to go with them, did he? Whatever Kali’s business with that guy and “Stevrum” was, it didn’t concern Jason. However, Kali still had his share of winnings.
    Jason quickly caught up to Kali, curiosity flaring.
    “Psst. Kali. What money is he talking about?” Jason whispered. More for the sake of situation rather than to be discreet. There was no way Unoch, who was walking right next to them, couldn’t hear what he was saying.
    Red of Kali’s cheeks darkened.
    “Remember how I said I also needed money?”
    “No. No I don’t remember you mentioning that.” Jason interrupted her.
    “Eat some mold.” Kali snapped back at him, clearly not appreciating his dickery. ”Not that it was any of your business, but I kinda owed my criminal boss a certain amount of money that I was rather lacking.”
    “Why “was”? Is it my business now?” Jason felt his anger rising.
    Kali turned to look at him sheepishly.
    “Sorry?” Kali asked. Jason got to know her well to recognise this insincerity.
    “I am sure it will be nothing. Stevrum have nothing against you. He’ll probably just ask you some questions, threaten you, and then let you go.” She explained.
    “That’s supposed to make me feel better!” Jason exclaimed. “I don’t want to be involved in this kind of ...thing.” He finished after a second of looking for a right word, waving his hand in the direction of Unoth, who raised a questioning eyebrow.
    “It’s nothing.” Jason said placatingly. Unoth didn’t look dangerous but how could he be certain? For all he knew Unoth could spit acid and shoot laser beams out of his eyes.
    “We are here.” Unoth uttered.
    They stood in front of a small, three story building. Jason was once again struck by how familiar mixed with alien in these crazy ring. It looked like a frat house. There only thing missing was a gaggle of jocks, doing whatever jocks do. Well there will probably at least one jock inside. The top jock he was led to.
    Before Unoth could open the door, it opened itself. A clearly inebriated humanoid fell out of the entrance. Odor of drunken “fun” clung to his body like a cloak. Jason wrinkled his nose in disgust. The smell was awful in a very familiar not-space way. The alien in front of him was clearly Kali’s racemate. Red hue of his skin and clawed fingers were a testament of that. However he was very short - no taller than meter and a half. Jason had trouble taking him seriously If he was being honest.
    “Hey Unoth, bringing the girls to Stevrum.” Druncard said, slurring most of the words and leering at Kali and Jason.
    Unoth just gave him a pointed glare. This quickly made the jock regain at least a semblance of sobriety.
    “Right, eh. I’ll go. Wouldn’t want to slow down Stevrum’s business.” He said nervously, before walking past them.
    Their little group entered the house, which was about as remarkable as some of the art of futuristic architecture Jason had seen on the internet. After walking down a flight of stairs they entered a large circular chamber. In its centre stood wooden desk with holographic monitors, partially concealing another diminutive red skinned humanoid.
    Unoth let out a delicate cough, attracting his attention. Stevrum raised his eyes to look at them and even through the veil of holographic screens Jason was struck by the sheer intensity of his gaze. That was not a person to be trifled. Jason hoped nobody noticed cold shivers running down his spine.
    “Kaliandra, what happened? I do hope it’s nothing too bad.” Stevrum addressed Kali, his words flowing like freshest honey. “I am very interested to learn just what made you go into someone else’s territory so brazenly. From what my other helpers told me, you’ve stirred up quite the angry hive.”
    “Really? There were only two goons chasing us.” Kali said frowning.
    “Only two found you. The rest most likely tried to cut off other paths.” Stevrum replied. “Of course you were able to slip past the. You have always been one of the most capable of my helpers.” Stevrum said. Slowly, almost sensually he caressed her cheek. “But by all means do continue explaining what were you doing in that fight club?”
    “I was running short on money I owed you. I was getting desperate and when the chance to skim a little extra singlars presented itself to me, I couldn’t resist.” Kali stammered.
    It was very strange seeing Kali like this.
    “Oh, Kali you shouldn’t have.” Stevrum said. Without any warning he punched Kali. “And I mean that literally. Do you have any idea how much you little stunt cost me?” Stevrum asked, maintaining the same tone of voice. It was like he didn’t just send a girl sprawling onto the floor.
    Jason noticed burgundy blood dripping from Kali’s nose.
    “I am sorry.I..I just didn’t want to disappoint you.” Kali hastily said, cowering on the floor. Stevrum continued to tower over her, judging her.
    ‘Not my problem’ Jason was eyeing the door. ‘Why was he here exactly?’
    “If you were getting hopeless, you should have told me.” Stevrum said before viciously kicking Kali somewhere below her ribs. She let out a soft wine that was muffled by blood. “Do you see what you are forcing me to do? You leave me no choice but to discipline you. I do hope you will learn you lesson.”
    As tired and stressed as Jason was, seeing Kali like this made him feel uncomfortable. Even if it was done out of clear self-interest she was the first person here to understand and sympathise with him. She gave Jason a helping hand, when he had nothing and didn’t know what to do. So watching her being treated like this was a little bit heart-wrenching.
    Don’t think about it. This is the result of her choices.I don’t have to intervene and suffer for it. I still have my goals to complete.’
    “Naturally all this fuss wasn’t all for nothing? Did you get the money that is owed to me?” Stevrum asked.
    Seeing a chance to placate her boss, Kali quickly nodded.
    “Here my winnings get me just a little bit over the sum owed.” She said, retrieving the stack of singlars from somewehere.
    Stevrum quickly counted the cash, and seemed to be satisfied. The same could not be said for Jason. ‘Did she just gave him my share?’ Spark of anger was unable to turn into a blaze as Jason’s growing worry for Kali swiftly smothered it.
    “Well at least you didn’t suffer these indignities for nothing.” He said, clutching Kali’s hair. Judging by her wince it was quite painful. “Nevertheless I still feel the need to disciple you.” he said before hitting her again
    “You understand why I am doing this, Kali?” Stevrum asked, occasionally striking whimpering Kali. “You must learn these lessons. Do you promise to take them to heart?”
    Kali nodded mutely.
    “What exactly have you understood?” Stevrum asked softly.
    “To go to you If I have a problem.” Kali replied.
    “Correct, what do you say when you are taught a lesson?” he asked.
    ‘Don’t interfere. Not your fight’
    “After all you need to learn a lot if you want to ever become an exobreeder.” Stevrum said. “They would never allow someone of your caste to become one back home. Here things are different, and I don’t believe I have to repeat myself, but if you want to succeed you listen to me.”
    ‘Wait what? Was she all these time doing it to reach her ambition? Despite what others told her?’
    Jason made up his mind.
    “Listen there is no need to make her jump through the hoops. She brought your money, nothing terrible happened. Surely you are gracious enough to let her go?” Jason inserted himself into conversation, alerting Stevrum of his presence, who previously seemed too engrossed by Kali to care.
    “How rude of me. I didn’t even ask your name.” Stevrum said, ignoring Jason’s question.
    Jason frowned, but before situation could escalate Kali intervened.
    “That’s Jason he is a newcomer to Veritanis. He helped me pull this scheme.”
    Stevrum was looking at Jason intently, then he stepped closer, invading his personal space. Jason resisted the urge to step back. Despite his diminutive height Stevrum managed to look down on Jason. So it was very important to Jason to stand his ground.
    Stevrum wrinkled his nose, as if he wa sniffing.
    “I see. You had your first burst of quanting which was so impressive that following inhibition field was massive enough to affect the quanting in an effective radius.” He said contemplatively.
    Jason’s eyes widened in shock. He turned slightly to look at Kali. She didn’t seem surprised at Stevrum’s words. ‘Had she told him about it in advance? No it seems he deduced this.’
    “Now, Jason. A pleasure to make your acquaintance. A friend of Kali’s is a friend of mine. You are new to all of this so I will let it go for now.” Now his voice gained a noticeably threatening inflection. ”However I suggest you don’t interfere. I wouldn’t want to deprive Kali of her friend.”
    “I am not interfering. But Kali is clearly injured and in pain from the fight we got into with your rival’s thugs. I don’t how extensive the injury is, but the sooner she goes to a hospital to patch her up.” Jason said.
    Moment of silence stretched into a minute, turning into a distinctly tense and uncomfortable one.
    “Stevrum, thank you for a lesson.” Kali said, trying to break tension.
    Jason hoped she succeeded. He started having doubts about confronting Stevrum.
    Suddenly Stevrum backed off and smiled pleasantly.
    “Kali why didn’t you tell me you needed medical assistance.” Stevrum fretted. “The fact they ripped your clothes is bad enough, but injuring you!”
    Jason almost got a whiplash from sudden change in tone.
    “Take her to medbay.” Stevrum commanded.
    Jason wanted to argue just to be contrite, but one look at Kali’s battered form took the wind out of that sail. He helped her get up and they left the building. But not before Stevrum told Kali to “pay him a visit” tomorrow.
    As they stumbled towards looming buildings of Academy, Kali turned to him.
    “Thanks for sticking up for me back there.” She said in a tired voice.
    “Don’t mention it. I didn’t get any money out of it, but I learnt a lot and today was...well not fun but certainly something.” Jason replied with a half-smile.
    “Well.” Even through the film of exhaustion, there was a sliver of mischief in her tone. “Who said you got no money?” She said as she once again produced a stack of singlars. “I will feel bad if you get nothing out of our little adventure.” She said before thrusting this wad of cash into Jason’s palm.
    Jason was momentarily speechless.
    “How? I thought you said that all the winnings were barely enough to pay your debt.” Jason said.
    “I lied. The very unexpected outcomes skewed the odds just enough for me get a little extra. It’s rightfully yours.” Kali replied.
    Jason should have been satisfied with the answers as he was very satisfied with the money he got. But there was something else to this situation that interested him. Something that smelled fishy. And no, not that odd scent.
    “Stevrum mentioned you wanting to become an “exobreeder”?” He asked.
    “Yeah, it’s a dream of mine to become one. Just imagine studying rare and exotic species from all over the universe, and adapting them to various uses.” she swooned.”That’s the dream.” Then her enthusiasm dimmed. “Silly dream I know, a low-caste like myself gaining such prestigious profession? But I want to. That’s why I came here, and why I work for Stevrum.” Kali said self-deprecatingly.
    “It’s not a silly dream.Never let anyone stand in the way of your ambitions.” Jason said and encouragingly squeezed her shoulder. Only to regret it as Kali’s pained face made it clear that shoulder was also damaged. “I was told that becoming an architect was stupid, and that I should choose a better goal like doctor or a lawyer. But I said fuck it. I have one life and it’s mine to live as I see fit. Not anybody else’s.” Jason confessed.
    Kali laughed briefly, before wincing from pain.
    “Look at me, sobbing my life story to you after a day of knowing you. What a mess.” she said. “But thank you for what you said all the same.”
    Jason just smiled and they spent the rest of the way to the medbay in silence. A very comfortable silence.
     
    mightykk likes this.
  22. Threadmarks: Chapter 2.01
    IBulit

    IBulit Getting sticky.

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2018
    Messages:
    72
    Likes Received:
    543
    Twins and Tricks. Part 1​
    Something was bothering Jason. Here he was lying, surrounded by warmth and comfort, but something kept niggling. It was trying to get into his eyes and no matter how many times he swung his arm the damned bug kept pestering him. Finally he had enough. He opened his eyes. Bad idea!
    Bright light blinded him and suddenly the events of the past day came back to him in a flood of memories. Jason rubbed his head, still feeling very weak. A lot of running and worrying, and not enough of food. His stomach roared and, despite the distinctly unappealing prospect of eating sludge, reminded him that his organism needed sustenance.
    ‘Yeah yeah, I’ll have to go to canteen.’
    Jason rubbed his face, trying to blink the sleep away. He shuddered. Yesterday was the worst day of his life. The death and the blood and mafia… All he wanted was to get some money. Well he got himself money. Jason slid his hand underneath the pillow to ensure the cash was still there. But he definitely did not want to get involved in all of this criminal business.
    Jason clutched his head.
    At least one criminal boss now knew who he was and that was one boss too many. Still, at least he now had one person he could tentatively call a friend. ‘That’s right think of the silver lining.’ What was he supposed to do now? He had some money sure, but he still needed to figure out the rest. Kali confirmed that his inhibition field had petered out yesterday so the same trick with fixing fights wouldn’t work.
    Aside from financial matters, he had to think of his education and wasn’t it a bit weird that his slavery was going completely slave labour-free? ‘I guess it’s been only one day.’
    Jason stretched his arms working out the kinks, finally opening his eyes. He rose from the bed and started morning workout. If the past day was any indication, he would need to be in a best shape possible. ‘Plus nobody likes a flabby manservant.’
    Sweaty from the exercise Jason got dressed and went outside. His stomach was already eating itself. He needed to eat and eat quickly.
    Once he stepped out of the dorm there was a surprise approaching him. It was weird to see Mossegg after so long. It wasn’t long though. They parted ways last morning, but it felt like a lifetime ago. Regardless, Mossegg was moving in his direction.
    “I am here to give you instructions.” Mossegg sprayed Jason with his chemicals. Jason was sure it was the most disgusting method of communication ever.
    “Hello to you too.” Jason replied, wiping his face.
    Mossegg cocked his mantis head.
    “I forgot, vertebrate species like their greetings.” he said.
    “Right.” Jason said, very much baffled. “I’d love to hear the instructions the great and terrible masters have for me, tell me while we walk to the canteen.” Jason said and said started walking towards the cafeteria.
    “Fine.” Mossegg said, as he walked near Jason.
    “First of all, here is your identification card. I presume you know how to use it?” Mossegg said, giving Jason a small silvery card.
    He took it and looked it over.
    “Presume nothing.” He said.
    “It contains your identity and will allow you to access Academy. You can also use it instead of currency. Although you’ll need to put money in your digital account. There are station throughout the academy grounds you can use.” Mossegg explained.
    “Neat.” Jason surmised.
    “Also here is a tablet. It’s price will be added to your debt.” Mossegg said.
    “Stop right there. If it increases my debt, I don’t want it.” Jason protested, pushing the tablet back into Mossegg’s grasp.
    “I urge you to reconsider. How do you plan to take notes while studying? You will also require it to access Veritanis intranet. Tablet is relatively cheap, you’ll not be hurt by its price being added to your debt, but the benefits for you far exceed meager negatives.” Mossegg kept tablet on an outstretched hand.
    Jason looked at the tablet. It was true. It would be very handy to have one as soon enough the lessons would start. What he was going to do? Scrunge up pieces of paper to take notes? Come to think of it, he hadn’t seen any notebooks in his room. Not that he paid much attention to his mysterious roommate who managed to go to sleep later than Jason and wake up and leave earlier.
    There was no other choice. Jason bit his cheek and took the tablet.
    It looked just like any other Earth-made tablet with no significant differences except for its material. Instead of hard cold plastic one usually expected from technology, this one was ever so slightly soft. On top of that its temperature was a little higher than a still cool from the night air. All of this made an impression that Jason wasn’t holding a product of decades of chemical and engineering research and development, but something a little bit more organic.
    While Jason was admiring his new possession, they left a dorm area were walking through a park with a canteen area already in sight.
    After some time, Mossegg got tired of the silence.
    “Inside is everything you will need. Your schedule, some assigned reading as well as a program that will allow administration to contact you with assignments.” Mossegg said evenly.
    “Neat.” was Jason’s reply after he finally turned the tablet on and submersed himself into its interface. It didn’t take long to find what Mossegg was talking about. A dozen or so files with titles like: “Basic guide to Veritanis”, “Theoretical basis for Quanting” and “Stowaway’s guide to Galaxy.”. A mix of textbooks and guides, probably so that Jason didn’t bother others with stupid questions.
    An excited thrill filled Jason. Sure most of them had very boring titles, but the opportunity to return a normalcy of back breaking study hours of slowly, masochistically going through endless walls of text and plucking seeds of useful information was welcome. The fact that it would make jason much less clueless was just a bonus.
    “So assignments eh?” Jason asked after tearing himself from the tablet. “I guess guys upstairs found a use for me?”
    “Administration is located on technical levels, so they are guys downstairs.” Mossegg said dryly, tapping on the ground with one of his legs.
    Jason stared at him dumbfounded.
    “Did you just make a joke?” He asked after regaining his bearing.
    Mossegg continued to walk.
    “Nonsense, I am not an epidermic like you. The thing you call humour is not common to higher races.” He dryly replied. Nevertheless his antennae twitched in a distinctly playful manner. “Returning to the matter at hand. Yes you’ll be given tasks. Nothing hazardous I assure you.”
    “Wouldn’t want to damage the merchandise.” Jason replied, anger rising. Kali’s words rang in his mind, reminding him of their probable plans for him. “The only reason I will be taught is so that they could sell me for more.”
    “Indeed.” Mossegg didn’t have response other than that.
    Jason could only fume.
    Mossegg stopped and raised his leg to make Jason stop. However before he could say anything they heard a loud shout.
    Kali walked out of the woods with a bright smile on her face and leaves and small twigs in her hair. The smile dimmed when she noticed Mossegg towering over Jason.
    “Jason, I was just thinking wouldn’t it be sunny to have breakfast together. I would offer to treat you but I don’t know if my fare will suit your stomach.” she said with a cheeky smile that covered her frown.
    “Good morning Kali.” Jason replied confused. He honestly thought now that he was no use to her she wouldn’t seek him out. “I was just going to the canteen some of that delicious sludge myself, but I wouldn’t mind company.” Jason turned to Mossegg.“What do you say? Wanna join us?”
    Kali paled and made a weird face at him. Her eyes were wide open and her entire face seemed to stretch.
    Jason had no idea what she was trying to do.
    Mossegg clicked his mandibulae speculatively.
    “I suppose it wouldn’t take too much of my time. I shall accompany you two.” He thought for a moment, his antennae vibrating in their places. “Please note that it’s not like I do it for the sake of social interaction with you. My only goal is to get more data of humanoid interactions. Epidermics are so bizarre.” Mossegg’s clicking noises gained a distinctly huffy edge.
    Jason didn’t know why but something about Mossegg’s protests sounded really familiar. It was just on the tip of his tongue but he couldn’t quite put his finger on it.
    Kali let out a depressed groan and took her place on the other side of Jason.
    “Jason why did you invite that thing with us?” She whispered while keeping her eyes on a hulking form of giant insect.
    It was hard to tell whether or not Mossegg heard her. His movements were the same as before.
    “Thing? Kali what’s your deal with Mossegg, I don’t know him well, but he seems fine.” Jason replied in a low-voice.
    “I don’t care about its name, and I don’t have a problem with this bug in particular. It’s more his buggery that irritates me.
    “Buggery?” Jason repeated uncertain whether he understood her words correctly.
    “I know you’re from a primitive world that haven’t opened their Lense yet, but surely you heard the legends?” Kali huffed, clearly irritated. She still kept a wary gaze on Mossegg.
    “What legends? Back home giant insects are rarely the centre of a myth. It’s usually gods and incest and animal sex.” Jason finished somewhat awkwardly.
    Kali gave him a look.
    “What?” Jason asked defensively. “Don’t tell me your people’s stories don’t include some weird stuff.”
    “I am not going to answer that question.” Kali said. “Still, How couldn’t you have heard the “Star Swarm” or the “Seed of the Abyss” and “Imago of the Night”? Everybody heard those stories.”
    Jason rolled his eyes. Not the wisest thing to do when going through the park with roots sticking out here and there. He tripped over and would have fallen if he hadn’t grabbed one of Mossegg’s legs. He graciously paused and waited until Jason regained his balance. After that he continued walking without any reaction whatsoever.
    “In case you forgot Earth is not part of wider universal community. Folks back home aren’t even sure if there are any aliens.” Jason whispered into Kali’s ear, while keeping an eye on the narrow path they were walking.
    “It’s very much part of the community.” Kali quietly said before suddenly grabbing a fistful of soil, startling a little purple snail. “See, where do you think people grow food?” She finished in a tone of voice that was something between perplexed and amused.
    “The global translation system doesn’t process names very well. Better use a different name for your planet if there is one.” Mossegg remarked, startling Kali and Jason. “I must admit I am also quite interested in this question. To my knowledge, without any exception, there are stories like the ones that your companion mentioned appearing in all the younger races. Of course, some variations are inevitable, and some races decided to isolate themselves and withheld any information regarding their culture but overall the picture is clear. It is quite bizarre and a little bit unsettling, if I am being perfectly honest.”
    Kali, pale-faced and sneering, looked at Mossegg.
    “Wow, your kind can be unsettled.” She decided to forego subtlety and was now looking shocked at her own audacity.
    Jason stared at Kali incredulously. He wasn’t the politest guy around, especially by the standards of his family, but Kali was acting hostile without any reason to do so. At least no apparent reason.
    So Jason stepped on her foot, grinding his heel on her toes. Kali hissed in pain, leveling an outraged look on Jason.
    “Kali’s rudeness aside what stories are those?” He asked, ignoring Kali’s outrage.
    “Throughout eons, humanoids and reptiles alike tell myths of scourges of demon-like insectoids flooding the peaceful realms. Of horrific chitinous mysteries traversing the gloom to steal the souls of the innocent. Fear and secrets shroud those myths but poison of suspicion seeps into hearts and minds.” Mossegg said with strange for him grandiosity.
    Jason was deep in thought. What Mossegg described wasn’t too different from typical myths of various countries. But those insects…
    Jason didn’t consider himself an expert of legendary lore, his interests laid in a more practical side of things, but he could have sworn that there were no giant insects.
    “Weird that Terra doesn’t appear to follow space trends but honestly I don’t care. Right now I am hungry and would you look at that! We’re here.” Jason said to change the subject. At the end of the day it wasn’t important what bedtime stories were told.
    Without warning, Kali slammed her elbow into Jason’s gut.
    “That’s for trying to crush my poor toes.” she said flicking her hair over her shoulders. Then she went forth and entered the currently empty but quickly filling canteen.
    “Got it.” Jason croaked and began to follow, but was stopped by the Mossegg.
    “Was it a beginning of a courting ritual?” Mossegg asked seriously.
    “God I hope not.” Jason replied still short of breath.
    Luckily there was no queue, and fairly quickly they got their food. Granted getting a tray full of nauseating slop was distinctly unfortunate. Beggars can’t be choosers and all that nonsense.
    When they took the table, Mossegg had to remain standing as no chair was suitable for his massive bulk. So, engrossed in uncomfortable silence and under scrutinous gazes of others, which mainly were directed at Mossegg, they ate.
    Well Kali and Jason ate while Mossegg just briefly bit into a milky-white cocoon that was the size of Jason’s head and injected it with what Jason assumed were digestive enzymes. The cocoon now sat on the tray, slowly pulsating as its colour went from white to deep purple with flashes of light revealing a misshapen siluet inside.
    Kali kept glancing at it disgusted and Jason had to admit it was very disquieting.
    As for Mossegg himself, he was watching Jason’s apple bobbing as he swallowed disgusting nutrient mix with his antennae moving very jerkily.
    “Is something wrong?” Jason asked warily looking up at Mossegg.
    “I think I now envy humanoids’ evolutionary adaptations.” he replied.
    “What now?” even Kali couldn’t remain silent.
    “Gagging reflex sounds more and more appealing by the second.” He replied, disgusted.
    Jason snickered. It was just too funny. Snicker turned into a laughter, and under the incredulous gazes of a dozen of aliens he laughed. Unseen weight that bound his chest and restricted his breathing, now loosened.
    Even Kali’s foot hitting his shin couldn’t stop him.
    The rest of the meal passed by without incident. Kali and Jason spent time talking but the conversation was hitting dead ends as Jason was unable to offer his opinion on most topics she brought up. Jason’s attempt to find out how to get a suitable dietary chip were a failure. Both Mossegg and Kali apparently had gotten them on their respective homeworlds and never bothered to learn how they were made.
    Bummer.
    Kali was the first to leave, claiming she has exogenetics to hurry to. Mossegg however had a few parting words.
    “One last thing, your studies begin tomorrow. I suggest you familiarise layout if you had not done so already.”
    With that out of the way, he spread his four magnificent lace-like wings that glowed with light-green light. Mossegg bent his legs, jumped 10 meters in the air and flew away in the direction of the market.
    With only his new tablet for company, Jason decided to return to his dorm. Lessons were going to be tomorrow and he woefully unprepared.
     
Loading...