Real Aliens…

A scene from my NaNo.  I really like writing these characters…

**

Kirei was on duty when they reached the planet that was called Oceano.  One look at it told her why it had such a name.  There were small landmasses, but most of the surface was covered with water.  The first thing that she did was attempt to make contact with the colony.  Her first hails went unanswered.  However, after trying different channels for half an hour, she got a response.  The only problem was: she didn’t understand what the person was saying.  Her brows furrowed.

Turning away from the comm, she looked over towards the captain’s chair.  At that moment, the captain was in his study.  Calleigh was sitting in the chair, reading something off a datapad.  “Commander Skyler,” Kirei said, her ears flicking back.  When the woman looked up, Kirei heaved a sigh.

“You got a response, Ensign Firetail?” she asked, moving to her feet.

Kirei nodded.  “A response, yes,” she said.  Then she shook her head.  “The problem is, I can’t understand a word they’re saying and I’m not finding any of the phrases in our language database.”

Calleigh hummed thoughtfully and stepped over to the comm.  She took the earpiece and closed her eyes.  After a moment, she shook her head.  She turned to Kirei and nodded.  “Tell them who we are and that we’re sending a team down.  Even if we can’t understand them, there’s a chance they can understand us.”

“Yes, ma’am,” Kirei said, nodding.

Touching the internal comm on her wrist, Calleigh said, “Captain…” she trailed off when the device chirped.  She was about to touch the comm again when the Captain entered from his study.

“Did you need me?” he asked, tilting his head to one side.

Nodding, Calleigh briskly explained the situation.  “I’d advise that we send down an away team, Captain.  It might be a good idea to send Cameron Pembrook and Nicholas Rathmore with the team.”

Kit nodded.  He looked over at Ken and then hesitated.  Pembrook didn’t say that he didn’t care for Ken.  He’d said that he couldn’t read him.  “I’d like you to remain here, Commander,” he said.  “Send a couple of your people with the away team, as well as Pembrook and Rathmore.”

“Understood, Captain,” Ken said.  His tone said that he didn’t so much understand as he wasn’t going to argue about the decision, however.  Kit could accept that.  After all, he wasn’t sure that he understood why he’d made such a decision.

While Ken called on two members of his team and sent them down to the transporter room, Kit turned to head over to his usual seat.  He had only taken two steps when his comm chirped and Julian Southmaid’s voice came over it.

“Captain,” he said, “are you… sending an away team somewhere?”

Kit bit his lip and then shrugged.  It was going to take a while to get used to the accuracy of Julian’s visions.  Touching his comm, he said, “We were just about to do that, Master Southmaid.  Why?”

“Send a doctor with them, Captain,” Julian said, sounding a little embarrassed at his own request.  “Someone… versed in alien physiology would be best.”

“If you think that’s necessary,” Kit said, nodding.  He smiled when he heard the soft word of thanks from the new member of the engineering team.  Keying his comm once again, he said, “Dr. Littletree, do you have a member of your team that’s versed in alien physiology?”

“Ensign Rylan,” she replied.  “He’s a nurse, but he knows more about alien physiology than anyone else in the medical team, Captain.”

“Send him to the transporter room,” Kit said, as he took a seat.  “We’re sending an away team to the surface and Master Southmaid seems to feel he’ll be needed.”

“Aye, Captain,” Sharon said.

Kit glanced over at Calleigh and then shrugged.  “I guess we get to see firsthand just how accurate his visions truly are,” he said.

“So it would seem,” Calleigh said, her eyes twinkling with excitement.  She straightened in her seat and set her hands in her lap.  “Aliens, Captain!”

Chuckling, Kit nodded.  Most of the people they’d encountered so far were from among the Sister Planets: Kaigan, Ekudo, Daerwinn and Alterra.  As diverse as they sometimes were, there was a familiarity to them that meant they weren’t truly alien.  The wording of Julian’s request led Kit to believe that Calleigh was right.  They were about to encounter their first truly alien beings.

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