Sweet & Gorgeous
By: Bastian Hafrey
Her species had red scales covering their body. The scales were of a lighter red on their front from the belly up to their face. They were proportionally similar to humans, but with a long thick tail, no keratin strands, but a thick layer of thin elongated scales on their head; which could be mistaken for hair. Her face was flat, and by some convergent miracle, attractive features were evident from a human point of view. While a male would feature the elongated scales on the head and face in fashion of sideburns, females had no sideburns, but longer head scales. Each hand had a set of five fingers with mighty retractable claws. The elongated scales however did not cover the ears, which was placed at the same place as a human, the ears was much longer than human ears though, and pointy. They could fold in whichever direction, to better gauge the location of sound.
She had been abandoned as a progeny by her mother, and left in the boundary forest. Without family claims, she was considered feral, lower than the lowest caste, of no honor, value, or rights.
Years she spent, walking aimlessly through the boundary, empty of thought. Instinct guided her actions, as she hunted critters to feast. It was her only way to survive.
She would sometimes observe individuals of her kin in the boundary, she didn’t know why they strayed from the Grand City, nor did she know to care. It entertained her, however, to stalk and imagine them as prey.
She was currently committed on such a play right now, stalking a male that looked to be in a hurry. He wore a long coat, covering most of his body, but his feet, head, and hands were clear of fabric. In one of his hands, he held a big bag that was thrown over his back. She was curious of what the bag contained, she thought that perhaps it was food. It had been so long since she tasted food from the Grand City, so long since she tasted food made by her kin. Food that wasn’t raw critter flesh. She had never revealed herself before, but what if that bag would reveal her deepest desires? She decided not to take any chances of losing such a prize. She leapt out from her hiding, and landed in front of the male. She was dirty, with dried grime covering her naked body, and blood from an earlier critter kill still glowing from her claws. She hissed at the male, who responded in a display of panic, as he dropped the bag, and ran in opposite direction.
She gripped the bag, and sprinted in opposite direction from him, multiplying the distance as far as she could; then she climbed up one of the mighty trees, which she would often do when she were to inspect her catch undisturbed by scavengers. When she popped the bag open, disappointment sunk in her chest. She had so desperately wanted it to be food. She stuck her hand inside the bag and pulled out its content. It was three copper rings attached to a ball in layers. The rings could be twisted around the ball by movable joints. On the top of the ball a small knob jutted. There were slits around the knob that radiated a dim glow.
The device was familiar to her. She had seen it once before, on the day that her mother disappeared. The actions of her mother had burned into her memory, but it had been long since that she felt emotion attached to those memories. Now, the longing she had rejected for so long as her own feelings came washing over her like a hammer knocking her chest inside out. She slowly moved a finger over the knob, which made her throat feel dry. Was this the moment she would face the same fate as her mother? Or would she finally meet her again? She gently pressed down on the knob, and then everything changed.
Her eyes were closed, after pressing the knob, a flashing light had engulfed her, and she no longer dared to open her eyes. The first thing she noticed after closing her eyes were the smell. She had no memory of a smell such as this in the boundary. It was strange, but oddly satisfying. It was warm now, the boundary was never this warm, it was as warm as the insides of a critter. She could hear movement around her. She squinted one eye open, hoping that the piercing light had gone, but it hadn’t. It was still as fierce as the sun itself. A voice carried in her direction. It was distinctly different from her mother, yet it was nurturing. She dared one of her eyes to squint open once more, and a large female with an apron cast her shadow over her. The female looked mildly distressed and flailed an arm in a direction hidden from where she stood. She fully opened both her eyes now, to get a better look of her situation. She was shaking, and twitching her head, but all she could see was the large female, and blank walls in all directions but the one blocked by her. Fabric flew into the hand of the female, and she immediately grabbed the Feral’s shoulder. She tried to wrangle lose of the hand to no avail. The large female held her firmly down, which caused the Feral to hiss. Her hissing was met with what constituted as a smile of their kin, then she draped the Feral around with the fabric. The large female said she was the clerk of the establishment, but the Feral didn’t quite understand the importance of those words, she was still trying to find a way out. She twisted around and moved with force, but the Clerk wouldn’t let go. She was a prisoner of the fabric now. That didn’t stop her however, she had survived on her own for years, and she was determined to survive this too. She wouldn’t stop twisting until the Clerk said something about food. This sudden display of docility bemused the Clerk at first, but then the reassuring smile returned.
The light that had been so strong came from the ceiling, and her eyes had been allowed to adjust to it, it wasn’t as bright as she first though. But it was brighter than the floor of the boundary, it was about as bright as it could get from above the trees. The establishment was small. The walls were covered with strange looking items, but they radiated a heavenly smell, she figured it was food. There was a door with see-through wall that lead out into a street. There was also a counter with another opening behind it, where another of her kin stood, and the small room from which the Feral had arrived.
The Clerk lead the Feral behind the counter, and introduced the other kin, a male as assistant clerk, who also wore an apron. the Assistant said some words of nurture and then moved aside. Just as they were about to enter the other room, a metallic sound roared from the small compartment room from which the Feral had arrived.
A male stepped into the establishment, the same male from which she had stolen the bag. His body carried anger with his steps, as he approached the counter, he blared at the Assistant, then the Clerk, then he looked at the Feral. He gave it a long look, then a klaxon echoed loudly with no defined source of its noise. The Clerk straightened her body tall, and tucked the Feral tightly behind her. She snaked her tail around the Feral to keep her close. She glared at the Assistant, then focused her vision on the male, it intimidated the male, and he took a few steps back.
The klaxon was too loud for anyone to communicate, and no one would move as much as an inch from their position after the male had staggered back. A good minute would pass, and then a pack of three guardians crashed in through the door that lead to the streets. The glass of the door shattered and flew all over the place as they came crashing. They pinned the male to the ground, but left the other three alone. Shortly after they had pinned the furious male, the klaxon stopped. They asked the Clerk questions about the situation, but she held strong while the male protested. She reassured them that the Feral was a new hiree, and that the male had acted rash and caused a commotion for he found his job threatened by the Feral. He had only been a hiree for the better of a month, delivering fresh wild meat, but the Clerk claimed he had been unfair in his assignment. The Guardians eventually ran out of questions and carried the male away.
The Feral was terrified, shaking more now than before. She didn’t know of the rules and laws, but the big burly Guardians were scary to her. More so than the Clerk had ever been. The Clerk knew that if they had taken the Feral, she would had been executed. She was dirty, and nude, and that could only mean one thing; she was a feral. The Clerk bent down and held the Feral by her shoulders now, she looked into her eyes sympathy, and spoke those nurturing words once more. The Feral didn’t like the look at all, she didn’t understand it, and hissed at the Clerk, but the warmth of the Clerk soon subdued the hissing into a rolling purr. Content, the Clerk told the Assistant to pluck one of the delicacies from the nearby shelf and hand it to the Feral.
She gobbled the delicacy like an animal, never could she imagine something to taste this good. Both the Assistant and the Clerk were amused by her manners, but knew that a lot of work were now ahead of them.
Months had gone by in a flash. The Feral had learned to trust the Clerk and the Assistant fully, and accepted their offerings. She lived with them now, happily. In the early days, it had mostly been motivated around easy access of food, food that was cooked, and perfect in taste, so perfect, she couldn’t even understand how food could taste as good as it did. The Clerk and the Assistant had taken turns to instruct the Feral, to teach her way ways of the middle caste. It wasn’t an easy task, as part of her would always be out of control, wild. They understood as much, but they cared for her, they understood what type of life she had survived up until now, yet they saw it as a sign from the deities. They weren’t rich enough, being middle class, to be able to obtain license for artificial insemination of artificial seed. The Assistant was infertile, yet they desired a progeny to exceed the family trade.
To adopt one of their kin was unheard of, as family hierarchy ruled the way of their social structure. It was like a brand, that gave you rights and contacts and traditions and ways of life; and it all varied depending on the family bonds you hailed from. The more the Feral learned, the more she understood of their ways. If anyone knew of her origin, and how she had been taken in by the Clerk and the Assistant, they would not only see her as a feral, to be killed on sight, but they would also laugh at her, for being adopted; an act intended only for critters, critters of burden. In the eyes of her kin, she was a pet. She didn’t blame her adoptive parents though, because she understood the risk they had taken. If anyone ever found out about her, not only would she be executed, but their entire family bonds would be exiled to one of the vassal planets as traitors, converted to the lowest of castes as labour slaves.
In a way, it was a kindness that could not be repaid. No matter what she thought of them, she could not but love them for their acceptance of her being. To allow her a life she couldn’t ever had imagined even in her strangest of dreams.
Officially however, she was but a hiree. Her job description was to gather wild meat from the boundary. They wouldn’t pay her for that job, nor would they let her visit the boundary often. They wanted that part of her life to be behind her, but they had to maintain the facade lest the Guardians ask questions. As payment, and part of her learning, she was instructed on how to mingle with the individuals of Grand City. The Clerk had removed her own passage chip, and given it to her. In effect, it made the Clerk a prisoner of her home and their small establishment, she couldn’t move into any building save for those she owned herself. She claimed however that she was happy to do this, to let her explore life worthy of all their kin.
She had come to love the Clerk as her mother, and began to despise her bonds mother, who had abandoned her in the boundary. Why would she be abandoned by her own mother? Who was her mother? Who was her family bonds? She didn’t know, but she was determined to one day find out.
Now that she had experienced citizenship in a guided fashion, and carried the Clerk’s passage chip, a small piece of metal attached to a necklace that each citizen wore, she told her new mother that she wanted to explore the Grand City on her own, without being accompanied by her new father. The Clerk did not approve, but acknowledged that part of life had to be taught on their own terms, without interference from a safety net. The Feral wasn’t pleased with the disapproval, and hailed the Assistant. He had accompanied her through the city after all, if anyone knew if she could handle herself, it would be him. He didn’t want to give an answer to her without discussing it with the Clerk. She handed the hailer to the Clerk, and after a long heated discussion, the Clerk looked at the Feral with piercing eyes, the same eyes she had seen her display before, in the establishment. Eyes of fury and righteousness. She then handed the hailer back to the Feral and turned to leave for the room behind the counter. The Assistant told her she was free to explore on her own terms, and so she left the establishment through the new see-through door towards the streets.
The Feral had been alone for so many years, and only recently felt the warmth of contact with others. Her species were not solidarity by instinct, but flexible. She had long since forgotten what it was like to be around others, and now that she had, she didn’t want to let go, instead, she wanted to explore it further. The day had already turned to evening, and the best place to mingle at this time would be in a place her adoptive father would never had let her tread before. One of the mating grounds.
If she could attract a mate, she would surely have adapted far enough to fit into this new world of hers. Of course, she was still inexperienced and curious about those things too, and it would be an experience her adoptive parents could never provide her with.
She went towards the nearest mating ground she had observed on her many walks through the district of the establishment where she lived. It was located three streets down the road. On her way there, she saw many of her kin, clad in different fabrics, most of the fabrics had a family crest attached to their back, but some wore their labour attire, like she did. She had an apron, a long piece of fabric with a hole in the middle where her head was. The apron was beautiful, there was a dark blue foreground with lighter blue textures circling in different ways, yet symmetrically aligned criss-cross to signify wealth, even if she didn’t have any wealth. It draped down on her front and back, with a split at the tail. It was tied around her waist with a softer fabric. Beneath the apron she had a purple body dress in a single color across her upper body, and her lower body wore single color black pants. Only her head and hands were uncovered by fabric, as her feet had shoes. She didn’t like shoes very much, but it was part of the dress code in the Grand City. They weren’t well designed for travel in the boundary though, and she loved the times she were back there, and free to move without obstruction, to feel the grasses between her toes.
Immediately after she entered the mating ground establishment, she was met by a handsome male. He asked her if she would like to drink with him, which she courteously agreed to. As he turned his back to her, she fixed her eyes on his dress. He was no labourer, as he wore official family attire. A well tailored body suit with armor distributed at the vital parts, across his chest, his shoulders, his stomach, legs, and tail. The fabric was colored in greenish-yellow, and the plated armor in a gray hue. Each armor plating had circling textures not unlike her own. She recognized his crest immediately, as it was the banner of most establishment around where she lived. He belonged to the high caste family who owned the district. His family did however not own the mating ground establishment, nor the delicacies establishment which she was part of.
She followed him to a circled counter in the center of the hall. The ceiling was much further up than any establishment she had been in before, and a thick mist floated in the air. It was much darker inside the establishment than outdoors, even if it was evening. There were chairs distributed around the circle, and one bartender working the drinks. Almost all the seats were taken by customers, and plenty of individuals stood around, chatting with counterparts of their gender. Everyone seemed to be having a good time; but most of the sound was indistinguishable by all active chatter.
Without looking at the Feral, the Handsome gestured her to take a seat next to him, while he spoke to the Bartender. After she took a seat, the Bartender flipped two mugs their way. She had yet to work on proper manners, and gulped the drink in two large gulps. The Handsome showed some visible shock in his face, but soon turned it into amusement. He would compliment her on her eagerness, at which point she would realize her mistake. She hid her embarrassment as he ordered another drink for her.
The mating ground drinks made those who drank it feel aroused and light headed. It made her feel frizzy, a feeling she wasn’t familiar with, which alarmed her somewhat. The Handsome seemed to be well accustomed to the experience, and embraced it. She would ask him why she felt the way she did, and he acknowledged her inexperience. He detailed the effects, and reassured her that it would only be dangerous if she drank too much of it, something that he would make sure she wouldn’t do. She was still not trusting of anyone, but she felt certain that he would not allow her to die soon after they made acquaintance. She was sure he sought her as his mate for the evening; for so did she.
A lot of chatting and five drinks later, she had come to enjoy, rather than to suspect, his company. Perhaps it was the drink, or perhaps the hormones he expressed; for whatever reason, she thoroughly liked it. He grabbed her by the wrist then, a sensitive part of their kins body. He moved his mouth to her ear, and whispered with a rolling purr to follow him. She approved, and he led her to one of the three doors of the hall.
Through the door, was a long corridor of more doors. Most of the doors were closed, but one of them, which had special textures painted on the door, the Handsome informed, was his private mating den provided by the establishment. After he had casually informed her of it, he brought up a key, opened, and led her inside.
The den was small, only featuring a bathroom and a soft bed. It had a lot of detailed work done to the interior design, of circling textures and a variety of colors. The light was dimmer than the Hall had been, ceiling still tall, but the mist was gone. The Handsome tried undress her, which she rejected. He reassured her that he would lead the proper way and treat her with respect. He rubbed the side of his head against hers, which was their kins way of releasing and identifying hormones on an intimate level. She was scared, but exhilarated at the same time, feelings she thought paradoxical to one another. She responded to his passion and rubbed her head in turn. He reached for her tail, and let his hand slid through the full extent of it’s underside. She wanted to return his gesture, but his tail was still covered in armor; she realized then her previous rejection had been unfounded. She pushed him away, and looked at him, he looked back at her with a bemused look, then quixotically grasped the situation. He unbuttoned his chest armor, which was connected to his back and the tail armor, and moved it over his head then let it fall to the floor with a thump. She returned her kins way of smile, and approached him again. He touched her on the sensitive parts of her body, and she returned the touch, as they rubbed her heads against one another. They soon found themselves on the bed, naked, and copulated their union. They were touching and moving sensually and rhythmically together. A strange sensation she had never felt before slowly rose with each thrust, and it grew more and more compelling. It was her first time, but it all came natural to her. After they were done, she was slightly puzzled at herself, how she had moved, how she had known it all, despite knowing none of it.
He told her she would be welcome to his den at any time, but that he could not facilitate with middle caste in anything more than a blissful enjoyment. She had only been looking for the experience, and nothing more, which she informed him. He beamed at her with a pleased expression, and acknowledged that he was pleased to have been subject of her exploration, then he put his fabrics and armor back on, and left the den.
She stayed on the bed for a good while, thinking to herself and her recent experience. Content that she had managed to fit in, to be one of the many, to be accepted.
The frizzy feeling of the drinks were about to leave her system entirely, so she dressed herself once more, and left the den to return to the circled counter and investigate more prospects of the nature of mating habits.
She wasn’t going to find another mate, she already had that experience now. Not that she had done it on her own, the Handsome had led her the entire way, but now she knew the endgame, and she thoroughly enjoyed it.
The Bartender recognized her, and called her to a seat. He whipped up a cup, apparently complimentary refreshment as ordered by the Handsome. She slowly sipped the liquid, not wishing to reignite the previous effect, as she wasn’t quite sure if she was in full control of her own faculties when fully intoxicated, it seemed more directed than driven on her own initiative. She asked the Bartender what hid behind the second door of the establishment, apparently the Handsome had told him to answer any questions she may have of this type of establishment as he had come to realize that she was completely new to this type of experience. The Bartender informed of the structure of the establishment. The hall and the drinks was the initiation, meant to lubricate their desires, then the staircase behind the second door led to the display hall, and the mating dens were complimentary if two kins had found one another pleasing enough to share their genes, but blocked by their caste to facilitate further advancement in their relation.
When she was done with the drink, which the Bartender said was not meant to cause arousal but to dampen the feelings and provide clarity once more, she headed for the staircase.
When she reached the top of the staircase, after squeezing past many patrons on the way up, she witnessed something she did not understand, as it was more aligned with her than what she had been taught about the world of the castes. The second hall was as large as the first, but much closer to the ceiling. It was split into two floors, the upper floor was gaping in the center, showing the lower floor, and circling the hall. A rail encased the upper floor from the lower, presumably to make sure no one too intoxicated or in full swing of their display would accidentally tip over and hurt themselves. The mist was thick in here, but she could still see her kin clearly through the mist. They were all moving around in a sensual frenzy, trying to attract mates, having fun, and behave in a primitive manner. They were all so youthful, beautiful and sexy, she liked this place and these individuals all bristling of energy, she approved of their behavior.
As she circled the upper floor, twitching her head around to observe all the beautiful displays and motions of attraction, she felt uneasy how the sound was even more drowned in here than the initiation hall. When she had made it halfway around the upper floor, a young female approached her. She was slithering around the Feral in a sensual way, and she thought it odd. Did the youth of the castes have no respect for that which the Clerk had taught the Feral? Why would a female express her lust for another female? It was supposed to be taboo. But despite those thoughts, she grew aroused by the display, the Young was beautiful, she had longer than usual elongated scales on her head, and she was almost nude save for her lower body, with paint covering her upper body rather than a dress to hold her crest or labour fabric.
The Feral hadn’t intended to join any display, and rather just came by curiosity. But the Young was tempting, somehow. She gave it some thought, but decided to join her, and they snaked around one another, swirling sensually with passion; just like the others in the hall who had found a partner of attraction. It was fun and exhilarating feeling, and while she understood the emotion of taboo, it didn’t seem reasonable to cast disdain on such a beautiful and wonderful experience.
They spent a long time in the fantastical dance together, but the Feral’s heart sunk when the Young drifted off and began her display with another. She didn’t quite understand why she would leave, had she offended her in some way? Was it normal to change partners in the display? With her sunken heart, she approached the rail, and looked out across the hall. She intended to look around, to identify if everyone was participating in the same manner, to swirl around one another and then move on to the next.
As she watched on, they all looked so happy, full of life. Perhaps the mist was what made them all look beautiful, a trick of the senses. Or perhaps the drinks she had before was still circling her system. It seemed unreal how they could all be so attractive, regardless of gender, even more so than the Handsome. Plenty was joined in display, locking their tails, caressing wrists, pressing stomachs against one another, and spinning around with a ferocity of joy.
The Feral was almost entranced, when she noticed the Young again. She was still in full motion, moving gracefully between individuals, giving them far less exposure than she had done with the Feral. The knot she had felt before was slowly unraveling, but not quite completely. She felt successful now, she had earned her attention more so than the others, and she desired it now. To look at the Young, and her motion, was almost magical, in her essence, as she spread her joy among them all. None of those she approached seemed to deter, or feel saddened when she left. The Feral wasn’t sure how to interpret it.
She stopped observing now, as she saw a male a glare at the Young. Was this male hostile towards the Young? He expressed predation rather than joy and lust like everyone else in the hall. What did he have in mind? She moved down the staircase which lead to the lower floor. She recognized the hostility but not the intent, so the only course of action that went through her mind was the urgency of protecting the Young.
The Young was still oblivious to the male, and continued to swirl around in her own little world, moving between partners. The Feral struggled to break through the many joined displays on her way towards the Young. When she finally arrived, she noticed two more males staring intently. Where they all looking to harm the Young? The only thing she was certain of was that she had to take the Young away from there. She grabbed her wrist gently, like the Handsome had done before, and the Young turned around to view the propositioner. She looked displeased at first, but when she realized that it was the Feral, her expression turned warm. The Young moved her mouth next to the Feral’s head, her breath graced warmly and carried a rolling purr. The Feral liked it a lot, the knot entirely unraveled, and lust began to stir in her mind. She pushed those thoughts aside, as the current urgency demanded her focus and action.
She led the Young up the stairs, pushing aside any patrons that stood in their way. A slight shock seeped into the Youngs mind, but the Feral was too busy to notice. As they continued down the stairs into the initiation hall, the Young ripped her wrist out of the Ferals hand. She turned around, and viewed the Young intently; she soon realized that the Young was trying to hide her weakening resolve for joy with an expression of disinterest. The Feral moved her hand towards the Young, but she pulled back. Her heart sank once more, and unlike most, she couldn’t hide her feelings at all. The Young glared at her for a moment, but then softened, she reached out for the Feral, and touched her face. This made the Feral regain her confidence, she knew she had to convince the Young to follow her somehow, but to tell her that there were those of hostile intent was most likely not going to cross over believably with someone intoxicated by the arousal brew she had tasted before. The Feral slowly moved her head towards hers, in hope that she would respond with affection, she did. Once again, the Feral reached for her wrist, and pulled her along, less forceful this time. The Young pointed towards the dens, but she disagreed, the Young’s expression turned unreadable, as if she was unsure of what she desired. The Feral pulled her in, and embraced her passionately for a moment that she wished would last forever, when she let go, the Young agreed to leave the establishment.
They left to the streets, and the Feral guided her to an alley close by. There were no establishments here, as the alley served as a disposal site. A smell of decay overwhelmed them both, and the Young grimaced her displeasure. The evening had turned to night, and the only source of light seeped into the alley from the street. The Feral soon realized there was no other way out of the alley other than from whence they came, she recognized a strategic disaster when she saw one, as they usually meant she had spent her energy in vain when the prey made its escape, this time, she was the prey, and her efforts could have exhausted energy she would need to fight back. Was it all for naught?
She was recovering her energy as best she could, the Young was however oblivious to the situation, and more interested in getting out of the smelly alley. She kept the Young at her back, trying to hide her as best she could, in case one of the Hostile were to approach. Despite the situation however, she could barely contain her desire for the Young. They waited and waited, but no one came. She knew the Young would soon grow disinterested and leave on her own accord, and she wouldn’t be able to stop her without causing a misunderstanding that may trample her desires forever. She lirced her tail up against the Youngs leg, embracing her thighs. The Young responded by gently touching the underside of her tail, she then snaked one hand from the back to around the belly of the Feral, and fixed her head against her ear. She breathed heavily with a rolling purr, which caused the Ferals mind to blank out in ecstasy and desire; she wanted it badly. The Feral moved one of her hands to the Youngs wrist, and the other behind her back to stroke along the side of her body. How could this possibly be taboo? This was better than being with Handsome, more exhilarating, more pleasurable. She was just turning her head around to rub it against the Youngs, when a shout bellowed into the alley.
Alarmed, she turned to view the street, but the light was obscured by a towering body. It was one of the Hostile. She let her tail go and pulled away from the Young, her eyes adjusted rapidly to the threat, and he carried a rod. He pointed at her with the rod, and made a gesture for her to move aside. He confirmed that he did not care for her, and only wanted the Young. Shortly after he made his intentions clear, four more males appeared, two of those she identified from the hall.
All of the Hostile but the Rod slowly made their way into the alley, bumping into barrels and knocking them over. They displayed agitation towards the barrels as they rolled out of their way. She did as told, and backed away from the Young, who looked distraught, with desperation in her eyes. She wanted to protect her, to stay with her forever, but she knew she couldn’t. She was a feral, and they were all likely high and middle caste. If she harmed one of them, an investigation would reveal her bonds, and she would be executed, and after that, they would banish her new parents and their whole family, to a life of slavery, on a world far far away. If only there was an establishment nearby, they could activate the klaxons and the Guardians would sort it all out, and the Clerk could make another lie to save the day. She had been thoughtless, and lead them both into a trap. She didn’t know what would happen to the Young if she handed her over, but it was clearly nothing good, and even if by some miracle this was all a huge understanding, her attraction to the Young, and betrayal, would haunt her for as long as she lived.
When one of the Hostile were close enough to grab the Young, a question rose in the Ferals mind, could she really let this happen? Could she allow someone to hurt a wonderful spirit such as hers? Was there no justice in this world? She had been taught of the justice, of the ways that the rich and entitled lived, that there was security for all within the middle and upper caste. This whole situation went against everything she had been taught for the past months. It wasn’t right, and it wasn’t just. It was wrong. When a hand from one of the Hostiles reached for the Young, the Feral hissed out, and took one step forward. The Hostile nearest the Young staggered back, and then made himself ready for a potential attack from the Ferals position. She lunged out, past his defenses and struck him on the back of his head. He fell unconscious to the ground.
The Hostile next in line readied himself to charge the Feral, but he was too late, she was already on her feet and approaching him with sprinting steps. She spun around in mid air and wrapped her tail around his head, it twisted him into the air with her, and his neck broke with a crack. The other two Hostile roared in their disapproval, while the Rod stood steady at the entrance of the alley, blocking the only way of escape.
The Young was shocked at the events that had unfolded, and cried as she ran towards the end of the alley. She huckled down into a crouch and looked more fragile than ever.
The two Hostile now approached the Feral with determination, she hissed at them and took a feral stance, hoping they would be dissuaded. It did have an effect, but not a desired one. Instead of sticking close together, they spread out towards the walls of the alley, one of them raised a barrel over his head as a weapon.
Not allowing them to make any further improvements of their tactical position, she dashed towards the one with the barrel and knocked his legs out from under him. The barrel came crashing into his head and he went out cold.
The last Hostile save for the Rod, saw his opportunity when she was on the ground, and pinned her to the ground. He fit his arms around her head in a lock, draining her breath away and lifted her from the ground. The Rod now approached from the entrance, with his weapon firmly pointed towards her. Before he could reach, however, she flipped her legs up and grabbed the Hostiles head between her thighs, she swung her tail to gain momentum, which caused the Hostile to tumble over and crack his head on the ground. This act had however immobilized her, as the heavy body kept her on the ground with her head jammed under him. It didn’t improve her ability to breathe either.
She struggled to keep conscious as her drained energy and lack of oxygen got in the way. She clawed at the ground in an attempt to pull away. It was too late, she felt a burning pain pierce her lungs, and a hand pull her out from underneath the heavy body. The Rod towered over her, with one hand firmly placed on the weapon, and the other on her arm. She desperately tried to use her other hand to remove the weapon from her chest, but she couldn’t, she realized there was no way to overpower him now, she was too exhausted, and her vision was going dark from the pain and lack of oxygen. With a punctured lung, she wouldn’t be able to fight back even if she had the strength to do so, without oxygen flowing through her veins, she would remain powerless and defenseless.
The Rod had a pleased expression on his face, he was victorious, and merely waiting for her light to snuff out in a permanent way. He leered at her as his lips told of his intent to rape and kill Young as a message to her father.
She was about to die, and he left her with such a message. If she could express disgust, she would. Cruelty saw no limits among the high caste, she thought she understood them now. They were the real ferals, creatures without remorse, beings more undeserving than her. Then, everything went black.
Days had passed, the Feral had been admitted to one of the high caste healer facilities. According to the Youngs accounts, when the Feral had been pinned down, the Young had mustered enough strength and courage to help her. She had fought valiantly to protect the Young, and now that she needed her support, who would the Young had been if she were not to provide it? She had mustered all her might to stealthily carry one of the waste barrels towards the Rod, and before he knew what happened, he fell to the ground with a cracked skull.
She had then rushed to the mating ground establishment and activated their klaxons. The nearby Guardians had arrived immediately, and they always carried a teleporter to one of the medical institutes. She had been sent to the nearby emergency facility, but the Young had demanded that as soon as she was stable, she would receive the best medical care on the world, and hence be transported to the high caste healer facility.
To the Ferals surprise, the Young was a highness, the first born of the high caplain. The ruling caste of all kin. The Feral guarded her secret well, however. She would only tell the Young that she was a hiree of a delicacies establishment. The Young had been delighted with that knowledge, and demanded to have a taste of their delicacies.
The Feral continuously requested that the Clerk and the Assistant come visit, but they had refused. Not even telling her in person, the refusal had been delivered by the medical staff. She didn’t understand why they had seemingly abandoned her now. Did she do something wrong? The fact that she had saved the Young made her immune to any punishment of hurting individuals of the middle and higher caste which had threatened the Young. She thought they would be proud of her, but perhaps her assessment had been wrong, perhaps they hated her now? The idea made her heart sink low whenever she was alone. Added to the mental anguish, was the fact that the medical room she lay in was small and covered by copper. No one surface of the room was saved. She wasn’t always alone though, she was very content with person who would visit, the Young. She always beamed with cheerfulness and happiness on her visits, and the Feral grew to obsessively long for them, as her departures burned like an open wound. She understood that she was in love with her, a feeling she was unfamiliar with but soon identified from the past teachings of the Clerk. It was scary, yet a feeling she could not hide nor suppress. She found she wanted to feel that way, she craved it, no matter how paradoxical it seemed.
She learned that the Young had only approached her to despise her own father, but that she had found the Ferals natural moves to be enticing, different, and exciting. He demanded a heir from her, but she wanted freedom. To live life as she wanted. She would often visit the mating grounds to let loose, to feel the world from a more lenient point of view. The mating grounds held no demands for status, for castes, they allowed everyone to be equals. The way she imagined the social structure could become, the way she wanted to be treated. She would often approach females for that reason, because it was a deeply ingrained taboo, and her father hated it. She insisted she had enough love for both genders, and it wouldn’t matter to her who she found, no matter what caste, no matter who it was, her father could not stop her from finding a facilitated relation on her own, regardless of gender, and he would have to accept the norms she would set if she indeed choose a female for her facilitated relation. This however gave the Feral a glint of hope, if the Young could decide her own life mate regardless of status, then why not her?
A personal guardian of the Youngs father had visited once, he instructed the Feral to keep the brush with the Hostiles secret. It wouldn’t do if it became public knowledge that the ruling kin had enemies within the high caste. Enemies who sought power for their own, should the High Chaplains only progeny be murdered, his family bonds would lose their ancient rule. If the middle and lower caste knew of this, they might get unpleasant ideas of their own.
It took a month for the Ferals lungs to fully heal, at which point she could finally leave the healer facility and discover the truth of her adoptive parents dismissal. When she stood at the door of the delicacies establishment, the Clerk looked at her with disdain, then left to the back room behind the counter. The Feral found her reaction quizzical, and pressed on. She went in to the back room to confront the Clerk, and the Assistant was there too. They sat at the table, not saying a word, just looking at her expectantly.
She didn’t know what to do, what to say, her only reaction was to cry. She had come to accept this place as her home, but she no longer felt welcome here. In her cries, she managed to ask if they hated her now, if they wished they had never taken her in, given her a home, and spent all that time teaching her of caste life at the risk of their own happiness. Clerk was the first to fold, and she opened her arms wide, threw herself over the Feral, and embraced her, crying all the while doing so. She assured her they loved her still, that they would never stop loving her, but that no matter how much they worried and wished to visit her, they had to keep their distance, to keep her safe. To avoid raising questions. She thought she saw the Assistant struggle to keep his firm passive expression, she had a feeling he would have liked to throw himself over them too.
Two years passed. During which the Feral had managed to gain hold over the Youngs feelings. The Young had partake in copulation with multiple individuals at the mating ground establishments, but those were all temporary and purely out of the enjoyment it provided. She would avoid facilitation at all cost, as it was what her father wanted her to engage in. But to her, the Feral was different. She was wild, and out of control, something that was seemingly unheard of in the upper echelon. No one but the Young would act out of status, and it was enticing and exciting to find someone as daring and uncontrollable. An equal not afraid to show character and be an individual in her own right.
To ensure that the Feral wouldn’t drift away from her, she had cut a deal with the delicacies establishment, and employed the Feral as the personal servant of the highness. All to the Ferals own pleasure, of course. As a personal servant, her tasks were to take care of the Young, to provide for her, but that relationship had turned into the opposite. The Feral was of middle caste as far as the Young knew, which meant she had no means to provide anything on her own, nor the knowledge of the inner works of the ruling caste. She was useless as a servant, the Young knew, but that’s not what she wanted her for. She did discover that the Ferals feelings for the Clerk and the Assistant were unusual, they acted more like a bonded family of the same bonds rather than a mere hiree. Even after the Young had hired her, she would continue her persistent contact with that family. She saw however not to pry in the private matters of the middle caste, if the Guardians found out about it, which they would often do, keeping a close eye on her ever since the incident two years ago, it might stir trouble, and she wouldn’t want to cause the Feral any unnecessary struggles.
She was in love with the Feral, and they would mate every night after she acquired her as servant. She struggled to accept her own desires though, because despite how much her father hated the idea of the taboo she engaged in, he would still approve of her having found someone to facilitate a relation with; but the drawback was that it would be required to seed the fruit sooner rather than later.
The Feral had other ideas though, now that she was certain she was her lover. She wanted more. She couldn’t care for the status, she never had, and never would, she was a feral. But the idea that she might one day be robbed of her relation with the Young in favor of a male to produce an heir crushed her heart. She would never allow it, lest she take her own life and the pain with it.
In one of her weekly visits with the Clerk, who was now prouder than ever to have her adopted daughter be the lover of the ruling caste. She asked about the artificial insemination. Where she should turn, and how she could do it secretively. She wanted to know everything there was about it. She understood that if the Young could choose a mate of any gender, and the High Chaplain would approve of it no matter what, then that meant that either she, or the Young, could carry the genetic profile of one another to produce genuine progeny without a male involved.
The Clerk agreed to help her, and the next day, she gave her a teleporter, which would bring her to the low caste clinic, no one of the middle and higher caste cared about such a filthy place, they cared so little they didn’t even keep record of their facilities or their means of support to the kin it served. The Feral immediately hailed the Young to visit the delicacies establishment, but didn’t give her the reason why, only the notion of urgency.
The Young used the teleporter there, and before she could ask regarding the matter of urgency, the Feral teleported them to the low caste clinic. Upon arrival, they were met by a medic. When they exited the teleportation arrival chamber, they peered around the facility. It was dirty, and held plenty of individuals who looked to be in immediate medical need. There was a counter, as well as seats along the walls. Some of ill lay on the bare floor. The Feral handed a paper to the Medic, that she had carefully folded to avoid anyone to be able to read the content without unfolding it. The letter had read of a request regarding information about manipulation of the tool used to allow males without seed to insert their genetic DNA into a female, however it would be a female with a female, highly unorthodox and taboo, but the low caste had no say in the matter, especially when they knew who the Young was. The Medic lead them to a separate room, and the Feral revealed her scheme to the Young and the Medic. Once she had explained her desires, she asked the Medic to leave the room and provide them with utmost privacy.
The Young was taken aback by all this. She knew that she had to facilitate an official relation with the Feral sooner or later, but she wanted more time. The Feral however refused to let it go, she opened her heart fully, and told the Young of her fears, of their situation, and of the danger that loomed due to her background. The Young was shocked at first, but did not feel betrayed. It explained so much about her, why she behaved like she did, and why she was as free in mind as the Young wished she could be. She was slightly envious, but paradoxically happy at her choice of mate. Not only would this revelation be a stab in her fathers face, a stab he would never live down, and be forced to accept lest he threaten his own rule, but she also felt she had truly found the one she was ready to spend the rest of her life with. She was as wild in soul, as in mind. She was a feral. She was hers.
The Feral had wanted to carry their progeny, but they realized it would serve better security for both of them if it was the Young who carried it. Had the Feral carried the progeny, it was possible her father might make an attempt at her life. That wouldn’t be acceptable in any way or form, but even if he did take that action, she would be forced to live with it. No, she would carry the progeny, to make any such notions disappear forever. It was a good thing that the Feral had brought them to a low caste facility, here, there would be no records, and they could keep it a secret from her father for as long as needed. They could go through with the ceremonial facilitation of relation, and then reveal their gift to the future of rule.
They left the room and informed the Medic of their decision.
Being part of the ruling caste was beyond her dreams, she didn’t seek power, nor did she know how to handle it. Her only priority was for the attention of her mate. She told the Young that despite her carrying their progeny, she was the male of their relation. The Young found such notions amusing, as her father had disowned his wife, her mother, when she could no longer birth, and the only progeny he ever received was a daughter. He had loved his wife, and still did, in his own ways, and sworn never to facilitate relations again, so the whole situation he had placed himself in, threatened the family rule, his empire, and his familys future. If she had been born male, the life within the walls of the ruling caste would had been very different.
They stood at the front of the High Chaplain, with their tails twinned, as he spoke the words of facilitation. All of the head leaders of the high caste families attended the facilitation as witnesses. The room was otherwise used as the crown hall, with a high ceiling, and radiating colors texturing the walls in interesting patterns. The seats had been brought in to accommodate the visitors, as otherwise the room was clean save for the High Chaplains chair, and a beautiful rug stretching from the door and all the way to his chair. There were passages in his speech about desire, eternity, and rule. The way the ruling caste bound two individuals together in matrimony was different from the others in the way the partners had to swear allegiance, as they would one day ascend the throne together. The High Chaplain still did not know of the Ferals secret, nor the progeny growing in the Youngs belly. They had plotted it to the point of no return for the old male; he would surely explode in rage and possibly defenestrate the day he found truth. The thought amused the Young during the speech, which caused the High Chaplain to squirm as he thought he read the oaths wrong. He would quietly blame her for waiting so long on this day, how would he remember it done properly, when it was so long ago since he himself had stood here, and had the oaths read in his favor.
When the ceremony was done, they had managed to bring the Clerk and the Assistant to partake in the feast as cooks. The Feral was determined to let them participate in her happy union in some way no matter how small; which the Young had agreed to as a necessity. It had proven hard to convince her father to allow lowly middle castes to be part of the greatest facilitation bestowed upon their great empire. He had eventually folded, when the Young had refused to wear the official union attires, lest they be allowed to participate. After all, they were caretakers of the Feral. The High Chaplain wasn’t sure what she had meant, and had brushed it off as her typical nonsense, but he were soon to discover the real burden of those demands.
When the feast was over, and the day to continue as orderly, the Feral and the Young had returned to their quarters for consummation of their vows.
A messenger burst through the door to the High Chaplain. The message he carried, bore clear ill news. Somehow, the public had gained knowledge of the highness progeny, and an admission of the Feral that she was indeed of no caste. Of no family, honor, value or rights. She was a feral, and she had somehow gained her favor with the ruling caste, and formed bonds into the family, not only had she done all that, but she was a female, in facilitated relation to the daughter of the High Chaplain, and she had used illicit means to inseminate his daughter with artificial seed.
The High Chaplain was furious. He would had been furious either way upon discovering the truth, but he wouldn’t had been able to do anything about it had it remained a secret. Now, not only could he do nothing other than to crush his daughter and cause her to hate him for all eternity, but his rights to rule was threatened. All of the high caste, especially those next in line to rule shall his empire falter, knew of this travesty. The thought that his daughter knew all this, crushed his soul more. He wished for her happiness, but he always knew what had to be done to protect his family, he knew she accepted all these facts about the Feral, especially since it meant hurting him emotionally, but now these facts were not only going to hurt him, but her, and the empire as a whole.
The Young, who never quite agreed with the ways of her kin. Had embraced the truth of the Feral, and accepted her in every way. She dreamed of a different world, a world where everyone was equal and accepted. A world where everyone shared the same rights, and could be happy without the proverbial food chain of rule tucked into a fold. She was naïve, but her views were different and unprecedented enough to deter individuals from the high caste. No one before her, in the upper echelon, had viewed the empire from her point of view, and had only sought power individually, the power to govern over others. This line of thought, which was previously unknown, provided her with some leeway. While most at first sought to execute the Feral, the voice of her highness stilled their hands, and granted forgiveness.
It wasn’t as much genuine forgiveness as it was curiosity that motivated the decision to let the Feral live. What would the Young do now, with her strange and alien point of view? She didn’t trust anyone but the Feral, and only knew to believe in the Clerk and the Assistant. They had known the truth all along, for they had facilitated it, they were the heart behind the appearance of the Feral in the Grand City, they had granted her luxuries, and life, something that was equally strange and unusual among all caste. If anyone understood the Young and her feelings, it was them. But they were also under scrutiny now, it was a miracle they had been included in the minds of the higher echelon at all, and not immediately exiled. The Young had managed to extend her father’s protection to include them for the time being, he would allow Guardians to protect their livelihood until further decisions on the matter were made. Everyone was anticipating a move by the Young, how she would try in her ideals to change the world. A world no one necessary agreed with, and if they didn’t, they would shut her down forever, and permanently remove her family crest from the future records. They all desired an excuse to act, one way or another.
Shortly after the Feral had been detained, the Young had requested that she be held in the chaplain spire. The highest structure of the palace and the city. As the Guardians moved her there, the Young dashed to the teleportation device in their chamber, and appeared in the delicacies establishment. The Clerk and the Assistant had yet to arrive, as they were being escorted from the palace. She moved to the room behind the counter, and there she waited. The looked around inside the room, she had never been here before, only seen the Feral arrive from here in the past. This appeared to be the place of their near-magical delicacies. There was a table in the center of the small room, as well as a sink with a cabinet and enough room to create foods. There was a large heating bin, as well as smaller heating plates with cutlery and pans and other tools hanging from the wall right above it. On the other side of the room was storage units, she assessed it was where they kept the raw materials.
The stillness and the wait gave her time to think. Her emotions were in turmoil. Her lover and life mate was likely to be executed. Her father would do whatever he had to do to keep his power, lest they were all to be executed or stripped of status and shipped off to some remote vassal world somewhere among the stars. He might even revoke the facilitated relation, and force her to facilitate with a high caste male as a desperate move. Would he kill their progeny then? That idea dawned on her as a jolt of pain. The progeny wasn’t safe if she returned to the palace, but that’s where the Feral was held, and she couldn’t abandon her, she mustn’t abandon her, she had to save her, no matter the price.
The wait was driving her insane, and she felt as if her skin was crawling in fear. She moved her hand in front of her face, and it was shaking uncontrollably. How was she going to fix this? How could she had let it come to this point? Why had the Feral not been more careful? She could had just written it all on a paper, and they could had burned the paper together. No one ever had to find out the truth. It could all had been swept under the proverbial rug and they would had lived happily ever after. Was it her fault? For rejecting the idea of facilitation at the low caste clinic? No, the Feral would never had agreed to relation without the Young knowing her truth. She knew that, she was too honest, too pure, to innocent. She would had laid it all out straight regardless of when and where. Then, she heard the outer door of the establishment creak open.
The Feral was told that she would be denied all contact with the outside world. Not even the Young would be allowed to speak to her in any form or way. She were to be imprisoned in the spire cell, and there she would spend the rest of her days. It was the highest point of the spire, and the cell was as minimalistic as they come. She had a hole in the ground to relieve herself, and a bed, that was it. The walls were nondescript, and the only way in or out was covered by a green power field. Touching the field could kill her, and she was advised to do so when she eventually came to terms with her new reality. She would receive food once a day, at the first sign of dusk. It would be her only way to keep time, but save for that small entitlement of awareness, she would be deprived of all else.
She began to pace around on the small space of floor between the latrine hole and the field. It barely allowed her three full steps before she had to turn. She wasn’t as much scared as she was furious. Someone threatened to rob her of the Young, and possibly hurt the Young for no logical reason. She had little sympathy for the castes, as they were dumb and unjust and only served to hurt one another in her mind. How no one but her adoptive parents and the Young saw clarity was beyond her. Was the entire universe insane? Life was so much easier when she lived in the boundary. There, she was free, and didn’t a care for any of this nonsense, and in truth, she still didn’t. Her only motivation had always been for her own well being, it had gotten complicated, sure, but it was still as clear as day, she had adopted a need for loved ones, this was true, but save for that paradoxical desire to belong with certain special individuals of her heart, she only cared for a source of sustenance. Now she was bereft of both. She would no longer feel the warmth and love of the Young, her breath, and soft rolling purr, her touch. Nor would she be scolded by the Clerk, or be granted her wisdom. Now, she would never again feast on the delicacies carefully crafted with passion by the Assistant. A passion for his fatherly love to her.
This was all wrong, the whole world was wrong, and they had to be taught of their fallacy. They had to be instructed, like she had been, on how to live a good life. She was sure now, that none of them knew. They were all obsessed for the wrong reasons. They were all trying to gain something that no one had to give, trying to rule over others as if they were mere critters. How could her kin all be so twisted and lacking on an individual level? Had they no empathy? No understanding of what it would be like for themselves if they were in the position they put others? Who were they, to believe they had the rights to control the behavior of one another, as if their life was more valuable? No. Wrong, it was all wrong!
She stopped pacing and moved to the back of the bed, she leaned against the wall for a moment as she took a deep breath. After exhaling, she turned her shoulder towards the green power field. She made a powerful dash, using her legs against the wall as a spring, and plowed her body towards the field. It rejected her at first, but the force of her momentum allowed her shoulder to break through. A smoldering sensation washed over her body as she fell through the gate.
She now laid lifeless on the ground, the Guardians guarding the cell turned from their posts and saw a smoldering lump of burned flesh. One of them called the high chaplain for orders, while the other one was too distracted by the charred state of her body.
She recognized the voice of the Guardians who had stepped into the delicacies establishment. Alarmed, she left the stool she had been sitting on, and crammed herself into the sink cabinet. She hit her head on the drain pipe, but hoped the sound weren’t loud enough to alert any of the Guardians.
Then came the voice of the Clerk, she sounded as if she was struggling to keep from yelling at them, with tears in her words. The Assistant coolly asked the Guardians to leave their establishment, and if they must stay around, they should do so from a distance, not to interfere with business.
She heard the motion of two sit down around the table, and they began a discussion regarding the Feral, and the Young. The Clerk plotted to smuggle a teleporter into whichever cell the Feral was imprisoned in, but the Assistant assured her the hold would disable any such devices. She went on with other ideas, such as attacking the palace out right, free the Feral, and escape to the stars on a ship. The Assistant kept denying any such plans. They felt sad, not only for the Feral, but for the Young too. They wanted to help, but they were powerless. They had no resources other than themselves, as any action they took would exile their family forever.
The Young crawled out from her hiding place, she was sure that they were alone considering all the plans they exhausted. At first they were shocked to see her come out from the sink cabinet, even the Assistant forgot to contain his otherwise passive expression, then, the Clerk got angry that she had been spying on them, lastly, the Clerk began to cry. She reached a hand for the Young, and placed it firmly on her shoulder. Her cries were that of lost hope, and acceptance of her inability to take action when there was still a chance to do so, perhaps, if she had fought the staff of the palace over the supplies she had wanted to bring home with her, she would had still been there when they ordered for the Feral to be seized and locked away. Then, she could have acted in the moment, when there was still disorder as each hiree tried to find their role, she could have springed the Feral free, and sent her back to the boundary; It would had given the time to plot a means to send her towards the stars. After all, the Clerk was big and burly for a female, even bigger than most male, and no palace Guardian would had been able to stand in her way when she was determined to the extent of risking her very own life for the sake of her adopted daughter.
This gave the Young an idea, she had the influence the Clerk needed. She could easily order an escape ship, the problem was to get the ship to the palace without being turned away or shot down in the process. If they could free the Feral, the task would had been easy. Despite the orbital defenses, they would not fire on the ship of their own kin without warning, giving them enough time to escape orbit, and the system.
She told the Clerk that she could arrange anything they needed, as long as they did so immediately, before the high caste found proper order in the current mayhem of decisions to make. She was convinced the upper echelon were more interested in removing her father than to focus their attention on her and the Feral.
Then her hailer rang out. It was her father. He called for her with grim news. She thought he was going to order her return to the palace, but the words he said crushed her. The Feral was dead.
Both the Clerk and the Assistant just blankly stared now, stared at nothing. It was as if the news of her demise removed any sense they had of being alive, of breathing, of moving, of acting. For a moment, the Young thought they were dead inside. She was alarmed of course, but she wouldn’t accept such notions, not until she knew exactly how she had died. She immediately asked her father if the death was an execution. Which he confirmed it was not, it had been an accident, he said. She had fallen against the cell door, and her body had been scorched to death. The Young found light in those words, scorched to death, that was nonsense. the power grid wasn’t strong enough to turn a grown individual into pure charcoal. She asked her father for the time of death, and he responded by claiming it was still within the minute. This was good news, either they just assumed she was dead, or she was still alive, but slowly dying, or she had just been confirmed dead, either way. She could still be saved. She could, but for that to happen, they had to act now, if they didn’t do something, she would really die with no means of return within the next fifteen minutes.
She ordered her father to deliver the Feral to the high caste healer facility immediately, he protested. He knew that for as long as she lived, the empire under his family rule would be threatened. But he also knew that the high caste had come to a difficult position thanks to his daughters unparalleled political view. She had been different enough to create a curiosity, and put a hold on the otherwise automatic execution of a mere feral, if he didn’t act, he would lose his daughter forever, but save the family bonds, if he did act, he could salvage the relationship with his daughter, and she could still manage to pull events in their favor within the empire, with an added potential to strengthen their grip on power. She repeated her order, and he responded with a plea for the position she placed him in, he refused to appear weak in her eyes, but her order was already underway.
The unfazed Guardian received his orders, pulled up his teleporter, and grabbed the charred remains of the Feral. They arrived at the emergency hall of the high caste healer facility shortly after. The medical staff flooded to receive them, and rapidly brought the appropriate equipment. one of the staffers stabbed a large syringe into the Feral’s chest, another staffer attached a small plate connected to a string into her mouth. The insides of her mouth was unharmed and fleshy. The string then further connected to a device, which read her life signs. A short moment after the content of the syringe had been plunged into her chest, lifesigns began pumping. She was alive, but that life was hanging on a thread, as she was still in critical condition. A third staffer rolled a tank into the room, the tank was roughly the size of the Feral. The staffers worked together to gently move the Feral into the tank and seal it shut. The tank would slowly heal her body, all while keeping her under for as long as the healing process required. The healing agent also served to resuscitate her in case of approaching death, as well as supply her body with nourishment. If all went well within the next few hours, she would survive, and in a few months, she would be back to a healthy state.
A metallic sound roared from the teleportation arrival chamber, and the Young came through, fervishly looking this way and that. One of the staffers pointed her in the direction of the tank, as a staffer was rolling it away to one of the copper cased rooms.
She accompanied the tank to its room, and blared at the staffer to leave as soon as the tank was in place. She stared into the tank with passion, she knew her lover would make it. She was stronger than all, and smarter than most. There was no way she would wither and die, not even after being charred. She expressed her love to the almost lifeless body inside the tank, and reassured her that their progeny would one day change the world. A world that both of them wished for. A world of true justice and harmony for all. If it was a male, he would conquer the empire, and demolish the caste system, with his own bare hands. He would then stop the deity ceremony, and spare the lesser worlds in the cosmos. He would become an eternal God in the eye of their kin, and lead them on the righteous path. If it was a female, she would be clever, and dominate the political echelon of the upper caste, turn them all her way with little effort. She would demolish the caste system, and segregate the opposition, teach them of their folly, and allow them back to the realm of the empire. She would not be ruthless enough on her own, but use the deities as a tool for peace, unify the cosmos as a galactic empire of different kins, regardless of their ideologies and unfounded hatred for one another. This she swore to the Feral, who quietly laid in her tank.
The deity ceremony was a cleansing held each year, it would sweep across worlds yet to be colonized by her kin. It was once a weapon capable of destroying worlds, but now hailed as gods, who would listen to the ruling caste and do their bid. It would protect not only the empire, but the worlds from being exhausted from their resources. It removed all complex life, in favor of the simpler and easier to subdue life forms. Before the high chaplains family gained power, they had struggled in wars across the galaxy, but with the deities, such worries had been permanently put to a rest. While it would take sixty-three million years to sweep the entire galaxy, just shy of time it took for complexity in life to reach a technological point and pose a threat, and it had protected their empire for aeons. The Young saw the weapon with disgust. It stood against all she believed in, billions upon billions of intelligent, yet different kins from hers had vanished at the hands of their weapon, and she sought to put a definitive end to it. Why was this? Why could they not simply forge cooperation and unite all kins among the stars? She didn’t understand, and she decided she never wanted to understand. It was a line of thought only the upper echelon could produce. A dark, grim line of thought, that should have been abolished in eons past.
She reassured the Feral of all these ideas, plots, and future plans. She swore them all to her, and then, she swore that they would one day be reunited. One day, they would once more find each other. She would set their progeny on the righteous path in her absence, and make sure it knew of its heroic mother, teach it the Ferals ideals, and of the way to live life fully. Then, she began to write a letter.
The enemies of the ruling caste claimed to had made a discovery. They used the public channels to announce an origin of the Feral. It was hard to know if it was true, but it was said that the mother of the Feral was a tainted exile, an unbeliever, who had escaped her shipment to one of the vassal slave colonies, and abandoned her young progeny in the boundary forest before taking her own life.
The Clerk heard the message through the public channels, as she, and the Assistant, sat aboard a ship. They hovered above the Grand City, taking one last view of its golden structures, which reached as far as their eyes could see. The city was shrouded by a hue of pink from their home star. The ancient city had stood for millions of years, their family, and all the bonds before them, had lived there, been raised there. All under the rule of the High Chaplain and his ancestors. They looked out across the city, trying to see the boundary forest. They knew it laid to the east, but the city was too large, to wide, to grace them a view. A view they wished to give the Feral one day. One last view of her home.
They swooped down to the high caste healing facility, as they neared a window of the structure, something hard came flying through, a medical instrument of some kind, and then the Young waved at them from inside.
The ship was small and roughly cylindrical in shape, with an angled front and rear. The front section contained the cockpit and control functions, with a large port view. It had two seats for the pilots. The aft section had four seats for passengers. Two of the four passenger seats had been removed. The side of the ship had a hatch for access, which they pointed towards the window.
The hatch slid open, and they could hear klaxons sounding in the background. The Young pushed the tank towards the window, and the Assistant left his pilot seat, climbed his way to the hatch. He held steady by a metal cable which was attached to the inside, and stuck close to the hatch door. Designed for just this type of affair.
He grabbed the tank with his free hand, and pulled with all his might. The Young pushed from the back end of the tank, and they managed to get it aboard the ship. She yelled that she had stuck a letter to the back of the tank, and that when the Feral woke up, she were to read it. It was intended for no one but her eyes.
The Assistant agreed, and shut the hatch. He latched the tank to the floor, and climbed his way back to the pilot chair. The Clerk and the Assistant looked to one another in agreement, and they left the planet behind. They flew towards the stars, with designation to an unknown world, where the empire was sure not to find them. Only the deities would be connected to this world, and it was still thousands of years until the next time it would arrive.
The Young said her farewells into the wind, she reassured herself that this was not the ultimate end, that they would find one another once more, perhaps not here, but among the stars. She wished so dearly for such a future, and she would make sure it came to be.