Malan eased the sleek silver craft to the ground, ion drives humming quietly and three silver legs sliding out slowly to cushion the ships gradual descent.
“This looks as good a place as any” said Malan as the craft settled snugly into a clearing in the middle of a large wooded expanse. His voice was full of excitement as a green light on the panel lit up to indicate that recharging had commenced and a second blinked to indicate that there were no locals within a 1 quillet radius.
“We’re here dear” he grinned “shall I put the kettle on and we can get straight to it?”
His clan mate ran a clawed hand through thick blue fur and grunted approvingly.
“make sure the system’s are running on low power” she bristled, her thick tail swishing impatiently “we need to keep usage low until we’ve recharged enough to make the next leg.”
Their unplanned detour to this awful blue and green galactic backwater was made only slightly more pleasant by the promise of the opportunity to do some probing, something she took great delight in.
“How many did you pick up for me?” Zarb asked curtly.
“Just the one” Malan said eagerly, “there seem to be rather a lot of them so he won’t be missed for a few hours I’m sure. ”
“They all looked like pests to me!” she snapped. “Hardly worth our time I’d imagine”
He was lucky to have her he reminded himself – the benefits of a wealthy family – and she was a quite magnificent specimen when she was vexed. Standing tall she was half again as large as he, her glossy fur thick and blue and a quite magnificent tail that made him want to do nothing more than please her.
Zarb punched away at a small hand held console. “According to this there are already a number of recorded instances of probing across a number of the species on the planet” she said curtly “I guess we won’t be getting any ‘first finder’ recognition! Records seem to indicate a mostly primitive society.”
Malan brought her over a steaming cup of tea, the writhing thrubar tentacles curling around the lip of the mug made her purr with delight as she slurped them into her sharply toothed mouth. “Right, let’s meet our visitors shall we” she said almost smiling.
Malan coughed nervously.
“What?” she snapped.
“He does seem rather annoying”
“Annoying? What do you mean annoying?”
“Well, just a little backwards and he really will not shut up”
“What do you expect” Zarb snarled, “an unpleasant rock such as this is hardly going to be the most intriguing of places is it. I’d be surprised if we were able to learn a single thing of interest from him.”
“I suppose” Malan replied, suddenly feeling deflated. “I just wanted it to be fun you know – special – it’s been a while since we’ve done this together.” Despite her frightful temper he really did admire her and as clan mate’s went she was the envy of many of his colleagues and friends.
“Perhaps just turn your translator off” Malan suggested, “we can still have fun without listening.”
“Hush will you!” she snapped. “Let’s just see what we have shall we.” Zarb put aside her tea and pushed past him and headed to the medical bay.
The first thing she noticed about the earthling was just how small he was. Small and pink. He seemed to have a light covering of fur in a few places but mostly he displayed a rather repulsive amount of flesh. “How revolting!” she said scornfully as Malan followed closely behind her.
Upon hearing her voice the creature turned his head towards her and started shouting something, his eyes wide. Zarb had no idea what he was saying but she thought she would at least entertain it for a while, he might actually turn out to be interesting.
She walked across to a small panel and with a curled claw punched a sequence into a keypad. With a crackle she began to hear the previously unintelligible ramblings translated as he spoke them.
“…You will be purged ..something something…” the translator was struggling a little.
“Animated fellow isn’t he” Zarb remarked, picking up a large probe from the array of tools at the end of the silver bench to which he was strapped.
“…and fire and death will descend upon you…” he continued, his eyes bulging wide as she walked towards him smiling.
“Fire and death eh” Zarb smiled menacingly “I think I may keep him awake for this you know Malan.”
Malan congratulated himself on bringing such pleasure to his clan mate as the creature continued to rage and thrash.
“…and you will be destroyed and you will submit to the… something …will of the most something…Alan Akbar!”
“Alan Akbar” Zarb remarked, “you ever heard of an Alan Akbar, Malan” she asked, now most definitely grinning.
“Alan Akbar? No dear” Malan replied playfully “never heard of the chap.”
“Well my little pink friend” She continued menacingly, running a claw slowly down the creatures stomach, “unless this Alan Akbar is about to burst through the door an rescue you you’re going to feel this descend on you most imminently!”
She held up the probe and something in the creatures response told her that it knew exactly what would happen next.
“Malan, be a dear turn the translator off will you” she asked smiling, “I think we will do this the old fashioned way…”