Sunday, November 21, 2010

[USS Charon] SD241011.21 || Joint Log "The Bright and the Dark" Part VII || 1st Lt Brent Warren, LtCmdr Sakarra Tyrax

=/\=  Sas-a-Shar (The Forge), near the Plains of Blood =/\=

8th Day in the month of T'lakht, YS 9022


"Not so much afraid as simply not built for such endeavors and therefore wisely avoiding them when possible. Wild Sehlat do not climb at all, knowing that they would likely injure themselves, and even Warya hesitates and needs to be … persuaded. And down is always more difficult than up, if you weigh three hundred and fifty pounds." 

Sakarra's eyes had long ago adjusted to the dark, but it was her other senses that were working overtime. Ears that had their charming shape not for aesthetic reasons but to pick up sounds even in Vulcan's thin atmosphere filtered out the noise of Brent's boots, Warya's disdainful snort, even her own soft, barely audible footfalls. Only a few more hundred meters and they would be down in the plains, where other Sehlat roamed and water was non-existent. But the only sound was that of a Nightflyer far above, and a K'karee stirring between the rocks.

Pebbles slid and bounced away under Warya's paws and sent the elderly Sehlat scrambling until he arrived at the bottom of the slope amidst a minor rockslide, looking fair disheveled but rather proud of himself.


"Grandmother. Oh, dear." Adjusting her inner compass to avoid the expanse of shifting sands, the young Vulcan nodded "I had … suspected she would insist. And yes, a great deal of … noise is not uncommon where the Lady Lhorexa appears. I do hope she has not given you too much trouble?"

If Brent was going to answer right away, a massive head nudging his elbow nearly all the way up to shoulder height and amber-golden eyes staring up with a hopeful expression certainly warranted a brief pause. And Warya was even careful to not step on any feet. But really, a bit of scratching behind the ears was warranted after this.


Brent looked at the large beast before shaking his head. He did as he thought the creature wanted and did indeed scratch behind its ears, but not for long as he kept up with Sakarra along their trek back to the monastery. "I didn't really talk to her a lot. She was the one that clued me in that you were gone, as I was walking to your room when she waylaid me along with your father. When she mentioned that you were gone I rather put her out of my mind and bowled on past her to find the old monk to ask him just what was going on. Afterwords I sat down with your father and introduced myself. We talked a little bit and he told me about you, and about how you were thinking. I asked him after that where he was when I was trying to court you in all the wrong ways... He kind of chuckled at that, and that was when I left to go find you." He paused again and looked down at the large animal before grunting. "Alright alright!" he said and began to scratch behind the large animals ears.


Unseen in the silver lined darkness, Sakarra gave a tiny smile at hearing the Sehlat purr with enthusiasm and stopped for a few seconds to gaze across the crater before them. The center was almost pure glass, and the sheer size of the crater itself spoke volumes as to the power of the weapon that had made it. A quick glance towards the southwest revealed familiar jagged outlines against the backdrop of stars, and the deep purple hue in the east … they had three v'hral. No more.

"I see." Well, at least he had been spared the inevitable questions of how by the Holy Rings he had managed to catch the elusive little Vulcan. With all the interesting details which grandmother would insist on.

"Well, apart from my father and grandmother Lhorexa who I am sure was delighted to meet my Companion, you seem to have made another ally, my love. It is not often that Warya takes to a stranger this quickly." 

Around… or across? Not really a question, was it?

She checked the eroded edge for loose rocks and found this a good a place as any to descend into the crater, but still tread carefully rather than simply …


Little more than a shifting of molecules in the air. Little more than a … feeling. In a human, it might have raised the hair at the back of his neck. To a Vulcan, it was a wrong note in a symphony, barely audible and yet shrieking louder than any alarm bell.

And if she had harbored any doubt, any at all, the way Warya suddenly stared towards the north was clear enough. No going back for shelter. And by the time the scent of tin permeated the air it would be too late. Too late for her beloved, too late for the Sehlat, maybe even for her. She had no intention of finding out.


"This might be a good time for you to … carry me, Brent. And then run." She pointed at the small mountains ahead, little more than tall hills now, buried in rubble. Off their course, and still far, damn far. But their best chance. "Run as fast as you can."


Brent was about to comment that he wasn't sure that Sakarra's grandmother would be a useful ally unless he needed a diversion designed to attract the attention of an armored division... However he held his tongue and smirked at the large animal, giving it another scratch behind the ear before he looked over at his beloved. Something was bothering her. "What is it," he asked her before she told him to pick her up. That on the other hand was most definitely not a good sign. He pulled Sakarra up into his arms and began to move. Fast. Very fast. At first it was just running across the open ground where he could, until he realized that it was not fast enough. He squeezed Sakarra against him and broke into a dead sprint, his breathing moving into a steady rhythm as the dull desert scenery around them threatened to blur he was beginning to move so fast. When he got closer Brent moved into simply leaping through the air. Feeling something wrong at last himself. He rushed through the flat areas before he began to leap from crag to crag.


"Warya! Sayr'uh!" Though capable of astonishing speed once he had gotten his massive body in motion, the Sehlat was steadily falling behind. How long had they been running like this?

His powerful hindlegs pumping furiously he nearly matched Brent's leaps … nearly. And behind the rapidly moving ball of fur …

Out of time.

Howling and shrieking like a myriad furies unleashed, the sands came racing over the very hills where they had been sitting and gazing at the stars a mere few hours ago. And before the clouds swirling in the darkness, casting a veil of death over the still desert, dancing through their midst, leaping out like balls of heat and light, flashing and crackling …



"Brent. There. The sanctuary."

The scent of tin was so strong it nearly made her eyes water, but she pointed unerringly at the old ruins, a religious retreat carved into the rock itself, abandoned for centuries. She had never been there, only knew it from stories and maps, but there were underground chambers, had to be if the ceilings had not collapsed, and natural caverns, deep in the rock.

No longer hindered by hills the storm raced over the plains, gaining on them.


She dug her fingers into Brent's shoulders, looking back at the Sehlat, the determined light in the amber-golden eyes. He would burrow into the sands if he had to, but they were on sheer rock now, racing, racing … not until the echo of a great hall that had lost its roof long, long ago told her they had arrived did Sakarra turn her gaze forward again.

Ah, broken walls, empty, hollow doorways …

Think. Think!

No. Not think. Smell. Feel. Listen.

"That way, Brent. Hurry." The doorway she pointed at looked like all the others, a dot of black, blind eyes gazing at the desolate ruins, the intricate mosaic that had been the main hall's floor and was now covered in rubble. But behind it was a sense of … more. Cold. Deep. Echoes, and a faraway sense of … water? Really? Fascina…

It was a good thing her beloved was quick on his feet or the ball of fur barreling through the old gates would have cannoned right into them.


Brent moved quickly when given the order to move down the hallway.  It was getting darker as he descended down, down staircases, down ruined rooms.  "Where are we headed to," he asked quietly, completely unsure of what was going on.  He really should have brought his armor with him.  An oversight that by the looks of things might cost him his life.  Just what the hell was wrong with this planet.  The oddity of his annoyance struck him.  As his own planet had a habit of killing its inhabitants that were not prepared no matter where they made landfall, even if it took a week or two.  "It's actually kind of nice here," he said with a smirk as the cool air began to make itself known.  "Are you going to be alright?" he asked her as he jumped down a ruined set of stairs.



=/\= To be continued … =/\=


Lt Cmdr Sakarra Tyrax

Executive Officer


Brevet 1st Lieutenant Brent Warren
Marine Commander


USS Charon





For those who wonder: Winking smiley emoticon