Sterile the Desert we have lately entered
SOONER THAN I EXPECTED
The old man said in his mind. A figure slowly emerged from the shadows in front of him. She was an obvious female, standing maybe five feet with very pale skin color. However, her head was slightly larger and rounder than normal wearing a white Hijab and a long white dress. As the young woman made her way into the moonlight, her features changed. She transformed into a small olive skin human woman Peters smiled at her strange need for fashion but couldn’t help but notice how strangely beautiful she was in the moon light. “Rumana I presume.”
“You met with the Princess?”
“The rescue mission is officially underway.”
“Yes, I know I can feel the, so many new voices.”
Impressed by how much Rumana’s abilities had grown the old man still wasn’t sure the time was right to take off the training wheels. “What do you feel?”
The question startled her and she became defensive. Peters fretted at her sudden show of emotion. Suddenly she was behaving as the little girl the WATCHERS left in his care. Now He was unsure if she was ready at all. WHAT IS THIS ABOUT?
JIHAN’S SPACEMAN IS HERE ISN’T HE.
The old man was surprised. “Your concern with the spaceman is inappropriate and out of place?”
Peters looked in dismay. No one had worked as tirelessly as Rumana Yet had she felt bitter about it all this time.
JEALOUSY IS A HUMAN EMOTION.
WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME Rumana cried frightened by how powerful her human emotions were.
“Nothing, you my dear are part human.” Peter’s informed her. “Just how much does it bother you?”
Rumana was in full resistance shutting down her human self. NO NEED FOR FURTHER CONCERN
“I’ll be the judge of that if you don’t mind.”
I KNOW WHAT I MUST DO, WHAT MY JOB IS
The old man studied her affect, “Damn you’re good. I better keep an eye on you my young apprentice.”
“Very well,” Rumana said aloud and vanished into the dark.
WHAT’S SAMMIE BEEN UP TO?
Sammie Amen knew just how to keep Sean Basrilian’s attention. This time was no different. Even though he was at the mercy of his sister’s plan to carry out the wishes of the Khad. Still he couldn’t stay away.
“So, do tell again why you are marrying that spoiled brat.”
“She’s the heir to the House of Aurora. My sister and I will have control over the two principal houses on the planet.”
“Is that all?” Sammie said mockingly.
“Is that all, are you crazy?”
“Will that bring the rebels home?” Sammie was serious. Sean knew how she felt about her mother struggling to survive.
“They have to stop fighting.” Sean remained her.
“My mother is never going to stop.” Her voice had the sound of utter defeat. “I’ve tried all I could to make her understand. I’m done trying.” Sean wasn’t sure what it was but he could sense that something was different about Sammie. He was about to ask her what had changed when he heard his name being called.
“Master Sean!” His servant Frost said trying to catch his breath from running all the way to the outer compound.
“What are you doing here?” Sean asked annoyed to see him.
“They are looking for you. Lord Asim and the Khad are,” Sammie’s eyes widened when she heard Asim’s name.
“You must go Sean, this sounds important.” Sammie insisted. Sean was surprised by Sammie’s attitude since she had never cared about regime affairs before.
“Please master you must come now.”
“Go Sean, I promise I’ll meet with you before the wedding.” she kissed him passionately and then ran off through the villa. For now, he would undoubtedly have to face the furor of his sister.
UNTIL FURTHER NOTIONS
Jihan couldn’t stand being fessed over, it was quite possible every servant in the village was there making a nuance of themselves. Her helper Upasana laughed to herself as she watched. “This is ridiculous makeup they want me to wear. That’s the last straw. Why for goodness sake, I’m gonna be veiled.”
“Would everybody take a break please?” Upasana yelled in an authoritative voice.
“Sometimes being annoying is a good thing.” Jihan said.
“If that was a compliment I’ll take it.”
“Oh, Sana you know I love you. Who else puts up with me?”
“Who else indeed,” Upasana was never subtle. “A week ago, you were beyond depressed. Dr. Samuel was worried about suicide.” Jihan covered up her giddy smile with her hand. “What’s gotten into you?”
“My prayers have been answered.”
“Sean Basrilian is the answer to your prayers?”
“No but my Spaceman is.”
“You still believe in that fairytale. I knew it you’ve gone crazy. I’m calling Dr. Samuel.”
“Don’t you dare?”
“The Houses voted in favor of this Marriage. In other words: there’s no getting out of it.”
“I’d forgotten your skill for making everyone miserable.”
“You’re planning not to marry Sean?”
Jihan gave a wry smile. “You never know.”
GATHERING IN THE SAND DUNES
The Khad met up with Asim’s caravan as night fell. For the Khad it was always a show of might and the procession that accompanied them was purposely extravagant. The pomp did not sit well with either but they had grown accustomed.
The Khad demanded a marriage between the House of Aurora and the House of Basrilian. The tribal Settlements, led by House of Basrilian, House of Aurora, Desert Dwellers, and the Outlanders have distinct society norms leading to long lasting rivalries between different clans.
The Khad hoped the arranged marriage would decrease the talk of rebellion that had begun to spread. Only one other time the Khad had to quell an uprising. That came about due to work on an asteroid off world using young men and women from desert tribes. Hundreds of new members joined the rebellion.
More than a few references had been made to the resemblance the Khad armada had to the NAZI’S of Earth history. Presumably the Khad would have considered the THIRD REICH a noteworthy symbol and the concept of an Aryan race of the human species something of respect. They were ruled by Omori Shi, which translated from the original Khad means CHARACTER OF GRAVE IMPORTANCE.”
Personally, he believed humans to be of no value. That’s the reason the Khad Ruling body sent Leeg Tor to be Governor. They knew living slaves were more productive than dead ones. Governor Tor brought cooperation with the settlers.
Up ahead Asim noticed, Omori Shi was waiting for him and he rode toward him. “Is there something you want Lord.”
“Tell me more about this Genghis Khad. You say he was a great king all the while a drunkard who required hundreds of wives yet responsible for mass-destruction. He is the human you most admire?”
“He had POWER. By the way it’s Genghis Khan.”
“The power to crush your enemies,” Omori wailed.
“And that is all you understand is it not?”
“Does my desire for power frighten you?” Asim asked.
“Your indifference toward your own species is puzzling but I’m not frightened, I know you would never defy me.”
“Well Then, you have nothing to worry about.”
Overhearing the conversation Leeg Tor joined the exchange; “Then there’s the subject of Princess Aurora,” Then Leeg Tor spoke directly to Asim. “Rumor has it that you are her protector.”
Asim suddenly had an angry look that surprised both. “That’s none of your business.” He rode ahead.
“Now that should worry you.” Leeg Tor said to Omori.
The mighty caravan allowed its collective momentum to ebb and came to a stop.
MEET THE CREW
Matt invited Maggie over to see his projection on the cave wall. There larger than life was Lt. Commander Quinn staring back at them.
“Finding and establishing contact with the Rebels was a stroke of luck. We have to set up meetings with their leaders.”
Dr. Shenckler a tall buxom woman stepped into the frame. “Major Stewart I expect to see you and your team in the infirmary for a complete exam sometime within the next 24 hours.”
“And the rebels,” Quinn asked her.
“It will take time to examine them all but from the initial reports the health of the rebels is surprisingly good.”
“Conrad here,” A burly gray hair man with a grimace said.
“I’m the one who runs the operations of the ship. Before taking any equipment any at all you need to report to me.”
“Are you referring to the power packs?”
“Chief, not now. That’s not important.”
“It won’t happen again.” Matt told them.
“See that it doesn’t.” Conrad looked directly at the monitor. “I’ll be watching you.”
Quinn was annoyed but did nothing to undermine his Chief’s authority. “He runs a tight ship.”
“You’re telling me.”
“We weren’t supposed to make contact.” Keiko Matsui said from out of the view.
Everyone was surprised by her complaint. “We had no choice.” Matt responded.
“You have a right to your opinion Dr. Matsui but you have no right to question the landing party after they risked their lives?”
“Yes, I understand that, but he engaged Alien troops?”
“Yes, and I take full responsibility.”
“That still doesn’t answer why you did it against orders?”
“TO FUCKING SAVE OUR LIVES,” Maggie broke into conversation in a heavy Irish brogue.
The command crew stood stunned. “I’d like to introduce the leader of the rebels; Margret Amen.” Matt moved over and Maggie flushed with embarrassment stepped into the frame.
“Sorry for the outburst Captain.”
“We are all happy that you and your people are safe.”
“whoever that was asking the question, I can guarantee to you my people and I would be dead had your crew not intervened.”
Keiko’s face stiffened. She gathered herself. “So who gave Stewart permission to bring her into this?”
Quinn had enough, “Keiko, into the hall now,”.
“Of cause Jim.” They stepped out the room.
Deforest looked over at Matt. “See what you started?”