Sir over here!” Shouted Kip one of the Khad soldiers who had been exploring ahead of them. “Their camp is over here.”

The squad made their way over the ridge and found the tracks mostly intact. “Secure the site.” Carlos said looking over at Rube to see if he had any counter order.

“We’ll set up camp and wait for orders.” Rube said.

“I’ll take a few men and look around for any traces of the movement of the rebels.” Carlos said waving to his guys.

“Go with them Gig and take your team.”

Carlos did his best to keep everything in order, but he welcomed the help from Gig who the Khad respected. After an hour, they made their way down into a basin where they stopped to make camp. They found needed water and the troop had time to mend their wounds.

“We need to get them moving as soon as possible.” Gig said pulling Carlos aside. “Blood has been spilled and instincts take over when they are left inactive for a long time.” 

“Do we have the time for some tea?”

Gig’s eyes widened at the sound of that. “Well perhaps making a time for tea is a wise move.”

The two sat down next to the camp fire as the water heated. Carlos and Gig had been in just about every possible situation the past year and yet the still enjoyed each others company. Especially over tea.

Gig was a female reptilian from the clan of Khad known as the Rad-Ge. They were under the rule of the Throojan Ryptordians when the Orion Empire showed up and made them all get along. That didn’t stop the armada from giving her a lowly post on a dry climate planet that made her soft leathery scales brittle.

But boy she enjoyed tea. Almost as much as she enjoyed her long talks with the human Carlos. At times, she dreamed of home but that wasn’t ever going to be possible to return to. So, she made this small but sturdy mixed group her family.

It took all of ten minutes for Ryman to come back to camp with a report. “Looks like another Patrol came this way.”

Gig could hardly contain herself and she mumbled something under her breath. “That was fast.” She was not really surprised though Ryman hated humans and didn’t like it when the two species were getting along.

“All patrols have been accounted for. There are three still missing up on the ridge. The furthest away about four days.”

Then he turned to the others. By his look the bad mood had turned to one even more uneasy.

“What is it Ryman?” Carlos asked.

“They reportedly saw something?”

there was a brilliant flash and something was flying just above the horizon and it caught their attention.

“Carlos, do you think there’s a ship or something up there.” Gig shouted.

“Dammit Gig shut your mouth.” Carlos looked at Ryman, “Did you see anything?”

“Nope human, I saw nothing.”

“Then it’s probably nothing. The reflection of the sun on the mountain peaks.” He turned and held Gig’s hand and smiled at her. “Forgive me for my outburst.”

Gig looked at him but softened her features. She was just about to say something when right then a silvery blue metallic object came down out of the mountain clouds and hovered just beyond the overhanging pass. It did a 360o and then headed off at top speed along the mountain range leaving a vapor trail as it disappeared behind the ridge. The group just looked at each other in utter amazement.

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