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descriptions of sexual encounters between a human male and other males from various alien races in a science fiction setting.
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About the story:
series tells the story of an ordinary man who's life is near its
natural end, but who suddenly finds himself, at the moment of the
unexpected destruction of his world, the victim of an alien
abduction with a bizarre motive, that ultimately opens the entire
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Favors of the First Ones - Chapter 14
As Jake began to rise back up to consciousness he realized he was being gently shaken by Rhokki.
It was beginning to get darker outside and night was fast approaching. He'd been sleeping
comfortably and there was not going to be any video link with Komakwa
tonight so Jake wasn't sure why
the cat was waking him up.
Rhokki's face was close to Jake's and he spoke in a whisper, "Jake, wake up please. We must speak."
realized he'd already been untied. He sat up and rubbed the sleep
from his eyes while Rhokki switched on the light on the low table next
to the cot.
"What is it?" Jake asked quietly.
have some disturbing news. I've told the Zeth about my intention
to convince my people to break ties with Troska's group. He
informed me that that may not be the best course of action but that he
would not interfere. He asked what my motivation was and I
explained the behavior of the bulls and the dishonor of Troska in not
keeping his word regarding your treatment if you and Komakwa did not go
against him. I impressed upon him as best I could the fact that
Troska is insanely driven by his extremist beliefs and intense hatred
and would do more harm to our cause than good. I informed him
that I intended to spirit you and
Komakwa away from here. He was unhappy about that but again he
said he would not interfere. I attempted to convince him to move
to our ship with us and he said that he would consider it and make his
decision when the time came."
"That doesn't sound so bad to me. What's the disturbing part?" Jake asked.
part came afterward, when I left the Zeth's tent to walk back through
the camp to this one. I passed the communications tent and heard
Troska's voice coming from it, so I slipped into the shadows and worked
my way around to the back of the tent to listen in. I heard the
temporary leader here speaking with Troska back on their home world.
The mad bull was telling him that the
boy had succeeded in convincing his father to join their religion and
that Mogwo would have the procedure to purge the favors from his body
performed even while Komakwa was doing his trial here on the planet."
"OK, I'm still not seeing the problem. Isn't that what everyone wants?" Jake asked.
it is. However, as I mentioned before, the boy may not be a
strong strategist and this lends more weight to that impression.
He most likely approached his task with enthusiasm in order to
quickly bring his part of this to a conclusion so that he could simply
return to being with you. Troska likely added pressure by telling
the boy he would not be reunited with you until his part was done.
If Komakwa were wiser, he would
have held off until the forty days were over and he was back on his
home world in the safe proximity of his father before he convinced him
to follow through. Mogwo is still not aware of his son's close
involvement with Troska's militant group and he also still believes
that Komakwa's trial on this planet will be a normal and valid one with
Komakwa being on his own for forty days.
As long as he still has his favors Mogwo cannot be informed of
any of the truth. He is not aware of Troska's group's presence
on the planet.
that Komakwa has convinced his father to proceed with the purging of
his favors even while the boy is away on his trial, Troska will be able
to work with Mogwo directly and tell him the truth of everything about
Ones and even his wife's involvement in trying to aid the Zeth to bring
them down. There is no
doubt that he will be able to manipulate Mogwo without the aid of
Komakwa from that point forward given their long standing relationship
combined with the fact that Troska so recently rescued the boy from his
predicament on this planet. That puts you in
danger. Troska told the temporary leader here that you have
outlived your usefulness. They no longer have need of you as the
boy has already played his part and the father will be without the
favors and easily brought into the movement. The guard here asked
what was to be done with you and Troska told him you were to be held
until his return so that he could have the pleasure of dealing
with you himself."
"Shit. I sense a crowbar in my skull's future. What about Mak?"
is in danger as well. Troska no longer needs him and the boy has
been a thorn in his side. He told the guard
that Komakwa still thinks he is to be reunited with you and that he
will be waiting anxiously to be picked up and returned to you.
Once brought back here they are to place the boy in restraints
Troska will deal with both of you when he returns. It is clear
that he intends
harm to the boy. If it ever got back to Mogwo that Troska
restrained Komakwa it would be the end of the old bull. The fact that
he has ordered that Komakwa be held indicates quite clearly to me that
he intends to take the boy's life."
"How the hell can he do that? Mogwo would kill him!"
Mogwo believes that Komakwa is going through a normal ascendance trial.
It doesn't happen often, but occasionally a boy does not survive
the trial and is never found. If he does not return to the
appointed place for his pickup in forty days it will be assumed he did
not survive his ascendance and under their ancient laws no search will
be performed on the sacred planet. He will be assumed dead and
Mogwo would have no reason to be suspicious that it was anything more
than unfortunate failure on his son's part. Troska need only make
sure that Mogwo never find out the truth about what happened here.
That means that my own life is likely in jeopardy as well, though
no mention of that was made by the guard as I listened in on their
"One fortunate side effect of my impotence where it
regarded protecting you from the bulls is that they do not see me as any
sort of threat. In fact, they almost don't see me at all. I
am still just the Zeth's translator so I am
allowed to wander the camp freely. I'm afraid that may
change in time. Troska may not know about my feelings toward you
and his mind may not yet be making the connection but eventually he
will come to realize that I must die in order to protect his secrets
even though it would put their communication with the Zeths in
jeopardy. He is being driven by his intense hatred of you and
what you share with the boy."
Jake's heart began
to race. Once again that bastard of an insane old butler was trying
to destroy what Mak and Jake shared. This time it seemed he was
going to kill them both and probably Rhokki as well.
"There has to be something we can do," Jake said, "When will your ship arrive?"
for almost a week. It will be far too late. The
communication tent is closely guarded and the equipment requires a code
to be entered to function and I do not know it. I am unable to
contact my people to let them know what is happening to have them
accelerate harder to reach here sooner. Even if they did, it would still take them a couple of days and it would
still be too late. Whatever Troska
is planning for the two of you, he will likely do it as soon as he
flies back here from their home world. There will be a delay as I
have learned that in honor of Troska's rescue of Komakwa, Mogwo has
asked Troska to be the religious representation for the boy's
ascendance ceremony. That means Troska will be on the shuttle
with Komakwa, his father, and others from the ascendance committee when
they bring the boy over to this planet. Troska will take part in
the ceremony and then he will fly back to their home world in the
shuttle with everyone else when they leave the boy behind. He
will have to fly back here on his own after that so it will be at least
twenty four hours from when they leave Komakwa here, and Troska is able
fly back to this planet. We have to get away from
here and we have to get to the site where Komakwa will be abandoned and
take him away with us. We will have one day from tomorrow morning
to put some distance between us and this camp before Troska gets
"How will we find the site where they drop Komakwa? Are we close to it?" Jake asked.
is one other piece of
critical information I overheard Troska say in his communication to the
He said, 'I need you to wait until noon before you fly out to the
We need to give enough time for the shuttle to leave orbit after
We can't let them see the scout ship going in to pick up the
That tells me that the start of Komakwa's trial will happen at
the volcano that is near this camp. That may be the reason this
camp was set up here in the first place. I've observed that
volcano in the past
and it will make our job in finding Komakwa easy. The volcano
backs on to a very high mountain range. They can't drop the boy
mountains. They are too steep and rocky and he wouldn't have a
chance there. There is no safe location to
anyhow. The leeward side of the volcano has frequent lava flows
spilling down the side, so that is off limits as well. That means
they must drop him on the side closest to this camp. This side of
the volcano is smooth and there is a forested area at the bottom of it.
They will likely land right near its base and do the ceremony
Komakwa will have been told by Troska that he is going to be
picked up and he'll be waiting patiently for the scout ship to come for
him. If we can get there before they drop him we will be in
position to see precisely where the shuttle comes down and we will
locate him quite easily. He will be waiting for his pickup so he
will not move."
so we know where he'll be and we should be able to find him. How
can we escape these people? Could we steal one of their ships?"
not unless you know how to fly it. I certainly don't. I
know a bit about them but I never learned to fly. It
brings up a
good point though. They have only the one scout ship here at
present. It is the
one they will use to fly over to pick up Komakwa once he's been
abandoned. I will need to disable it before we escape in order to
them from being able to pick him up. If I do it carefully they
will not even know that it will be useless to them until the moment
they get aboard it to go and get the boy. I worked on the
engineering crew on one of our ark ships years ago before I was
selected to work with the zeth. I know enough about antimatter
fuel systems to render it inoperable. They will ultimately be
forced to wait another day for Troska to arrive with the other ship, or
they will have to proceed on foot to go and get Komakwa. Either
way it will give us a
great deal of extra time to get to Komakwa and bring him along with us
and put a good distance between us and this camp.
We will have to escape here on foot under cover of darkness
"Do you think we can do it?" Jake asked.
I think we can. These people are lax and undisciplined and they
keep exterior lights in the camp to an absolute minimum at night.
There will be guards outside of this tent as always but I can
deal with them quite swiftly and easily provided I only need to deal
with one at a time so that neither can raise an alarm. You can
help me with that."
"Why bother taking out the guards? It's just a tent. Can't we cut our way out the back side of it?"
might be able to but it would not be easy. The tent is one piece
and the material it's made of is incredibly strong and intended to
protect against the long, sharp claws and teeth of some very effective
predators. There would
also be the danger of the guards or someone else seeing us. The
two guards who cover this tent always stand at the two front corners so
they would see any attempt to go out the sides. The
back of this tent faces back towards the latrine area which is one of
the few places where they have an external light throughout the night
and it is the one place where others are more likely to appear
unexpectedly and spot us.
It would be better for us to make our exit from the camp forward
of this tent and to the left toward the edge of the camp where it is
darker. It would be
easier and much safer to deal with the guards out front and make sure
they will be no threat to us. The rest of the camp will be
essentially empty as all of the others will be in their bunks. If
we take out the guards and stick to the darkness, our escape is nearly
"OK, so how do we safely take out the guards without them raising an alarm?" Jake asked.
noticed that each time I leave here at night with your bed pan, one of
the guards looks in to see that you are securely tied. If I leave
one of your feet improperly tied and you make sure he notices, he will
probably come in and secure you properly himself. At that point I
take down the remaining guard outside quietly by breaking his neck.
I need to go around the tent and back toward the latrine so it
will be an easy thing to come back up behind the other guard.
It will take only a moment to kill him and I will immediately
come into the
tent behind the second guard and deal with him while he is facing you.
I only need you
to struggle enough with your foot to make him take a bit of time to get
you tied up to ensure that I have time to slip into the shadows and
move around back to the guard who remains outside. You should
make a small amount of noise too by arguing with the guard about
you untied for a change, or something along those lines, to help cover
any sound of a
scuffle from outside. Anything you can do to buy me a bit of time
and cover any sound I might make would help."
"That sounds simple enough, but couldn't you just leave me untied so I can help?"
I would not want to put you at risk. As long as you are
tied up you are no threat to them and they will not harm you. I suspect you are not
an experienced killer, but I have killed many in my time. Besides,
if he noticed you were completely untied, he would not risk handling
you alone and
would likely involve the other guard and we would lose the ability to
split them up and take them down quietly. If it is only the one
foot he'll assume I did a
poor job tying you and he won't see it as any risk to him and will
simply come in to fix it."
"OK, got it. What then?" Jake asked.
would have to act quickly from that point as there are some that patrol
the entire camp through the night to ensure no predators come in from the forest. We should
be able to slip out quickly
without being seen and if we move swiftly through the darkness we
should be able to put some distance between us and the camp before they
realize what happened."
"Do you think they'll be able to track us easily?"
"We will make it as easy for them as possible to do so, at least at first," Rhokki said.
"Huh? Why would we do that?"
send them off in the wrong direction. They will not be aware that
we know the location of
the trial, or that they intend to put you both to death. They
will likely simply assume we ran off because of what they did to you
with the plant today and they will be concerned that they went too far
and will have
to face the mad bull's wrath. If I know their nature they will
not even try to alert Troska of our escape. They will be in a
blind panic to
do all they can to
bring us back before Troska returns to the camp the day after tomorrow
and that will hopefully work to our advantage if we send them the wrong
way to begin with. They are already not the brightest individuals
and they will likely be scrambling like idiots when they realize
they've lost Troska's prize and rendered their movement unable to
communicate with the Zeths all because they pushed their perversions
"So, how do we send them off in the wrong direction?" Jake asked.
is a river not far from the camp. It is the source of their fresh
water. The river flows down from the mountain range that runs back
toward the volcano."
"Yes, I remember seeing both the mountains
and the volcano. The river you're talking about is probably the
same one Mak and I crossed when we headed back toward the wreckage of
the ship we crashed in."
likely. This general area
is often used for the trials and Komakwa likely knew it and wanted to
get more familiar with it on that night that he stole the ship from his
home and that is how you ended up crashing near it. My people
tend to be more active at night and we are quite comfortable in
forests and jungles. Sometimes I have gone out into
the night to explore while you slept. I took great pleasure in
stalking the local
animals to keep my abilities sharp. I have become quite familiar
with the surrounding area for miles, even back to the volcano.
You and I will exit the camp at the back and make our way
toward the river in a direction away from that of the volcano.
We'll make sure that the bulls will easily be able to follow our
tracks. We will
go all the way to the river and then cross it, but come up even a bit
further down the other side. We will leave tracks in the muddy
banks and it will be clear to them what
direction we are heading and it will be away from the volcano, not
follow along beside the river a short way leaving clear tracks and then begin to
veer slightly away from it just as we reach a rocky part along its
shore that I know of. It will be a simple thing to avoid leaving
tracks on the rocks. We will use that opportunity to quickly go
back into the river and follow it in the opposite direction, back past
the camp and towards the volcano. It will still be dark of night
and they will hopefully not have discovered our escape yet. When
eventually realize the guards are dead and find us gone tomorrow
morning, they will locate our tracks and begin their search for us in
the entirely wrong direction. They will follow our tracks across the river and as far
as the rocks and then they will waste a great deal of time trying to
locate where we came out on the other side. When they don't find
any tracks past the rocks they will likely assume we went back into the
river and they will no doubt continue to search along its banks in the
same incorrect direction trying to find where we emerged from it again.
It will likely take them a long time to decide to search in both
should have plenty of time to make it all the way to Komakwa's
location even before they drop him off. It should not take us
more than ten hours to get that far if we move as quickly as we can.
When they attempt to fly there to pick the boy up they will
realize the ship had been sabotaged and they will likely set off on
foot to retrieve
him but it will take them at least ten hours to reach him as well, but
they will only be starting their journey after we've already picked up
Komakwa and started running further onward.
"They will be
able to track us once they get to the site where Komakwa is abandoned
and they will follow us from there, but we will have a significant head
start and we should be able to shake them from our trail, though it may
From that point on we will sleep by day under cover and travel at
night. My night vision is very effective and I can lead us easily
without requiring any light whatsoever. We only need to keep from
being caught for a little less
than a week and my people's ship will arrive and pick us up. The
biggest problem will be Troska. When he returns with the other
scout ship they will be able to search for us much more easily from the air, but if
we're very careful and do not travel by day we should manage to stay out of their grasp."
"How will your people find us if we have no way to communicate?"
tracking device interfaced to the translator in my head that will pinpoint my
location for them once they are in orbit. They will know when
they arrive and find that I am not in the camp that something is wrong
and they will use the locater to find me. At that point there
will be no problem getting the three of us off the planet."
seem to have everything covered. This all seems to come so easily
to you. If I ever need a strategist from here on out, you're my
guy, OK?" Jake asked.
The lion smiled and nodded.
"So when do we get started?" Jake asked.
It is nearly nightfall and the camp is already quieting down.
I will need to go out and deal with their scout ship. I should have
no problem getting into it. They are extremely lax here as I said
and once darkness falls, I can blend with the shadows easily.
I will pull the antimatter routing module so they will not be
able to power the engines. They have a spare, but I know where it
is. They will not be able to locate either once they discover
there is a problem and even if they do, they will be quite
non-functional. I will make sure of that."
it be possible for you to simply hide them, or at least one of them,
where only you could find it instead of wrecking them?" Jake asked.
"I could, quite easily. The module is very small and I could bring both of them back here with me, why do you ask?"
may not know how to fly one of those ships, but Mak does. This
camp will empty pretty much completely when they fan out to search for
us. Some of them will be searching back in the wrong direction
maybe some will be searching back up river in the other direction.
They'll have another party off on foot to go and get Mak.
There would be no more than a few left here. They would
likely leave no more than one or two behind to guard the camp from wild
animals. If there were some way we could sneak back
here, something they wouldn't expect, we could steal the ship and Mak
could fly us to a much safer location or even off planet to wait for
your ship," Jake explained.
The lion grinned and said, "I
believe I would be happy to share the position of strategist with you.
That is a brilliant idea. They will not see that one
coming. We shouldn't have much trouble circling wide of the path
they will be taking out to Komakwa's pick up site. We would be
leaving that location right about the same time they would be leaving
this camp to go there. We would arrive back here right about the
same time they will be arriving there and it would be nightfall again.
We would have no problem entering the camp without being seen and
taking the ship. We would be long gone before Troska arrives with
the other ship the next morning. You would make a good rhuxus
indeed. We think more along the lines of efficient stealth rather
than frontal assault."
Jake smiled and said, "I was a corporate
executive for my whole previous life so fighting doesn't really come
naturally to me. I prefer to avoid direct physical confrontation
even though the dents in my head might suggest otherwise."
Rhokki chuckled, "I love to fight, though only when the odds are even. Leave the fighting to me if it comes to it."
Jake smiled and nodded.
Rhokki said, "The rucksack here
in the tent is still full of food. I will bring another so we
will have plenty and will not need to stop to deal with acquiring
additional food for at least a couple of days."
"Sounds good. I'm ready when you are," Jake said.
will return when I'm ready to proceed. I'll need you to make sure
you have something for the bed pan so that I'll have a reason to take
it out tonight as usual."
"What the hell? Is there no end to the demands you'll place on me?" Jake joked, "You mean I have to not
only lie here in bed while you do a few simple tasks like plan our
entire escape, sabotage a scout ship, secure our food, take out two
guards and deal with the evidence of that, then lead us off into the
night keeping the enemy off our tails, but you're gonna make me take a
shit in a pan too?"
Rhokki chuckled and said, "You're right and I do
apologize. It is unfair of me to place such a burden on you. If you hold the pan I will gladly take a shit in it to
save you the effort."
"Sheesh. If you're gonna make me
hold the pan I may as well take a shit in it myself then. I guess
when I think about it that would make our workloads about equal.
I'll lie here in bed and when the time comes I'll take a dump. You
do all that other stuff and we'll be even," Jake said.
Rhokki grinned and said, "Lie
back then, I need to tie you up before I go out. I will be back
with the other rucksack by the time darkness falls completely.
The sooner we start moving the better."
Jake nodded and said, "Be careful out there."
lay back on the cot again and Rhokki tied him up and then stroked his
head briefly while smiling at him, then he turned and left to do all
One of the guards poked his head in the tent right after
Rhokki left and checked to ensure Jake was tied up. This time,
however, instead of simply pulling his head back out and returning to
his post, he muttered something to the other guard and then he came
right into the tent.
grinned as he walked up to Jake on the cot
and said, "It wasn't fair that they gave you the afternoon off from
duties. I didn't even get a chance to use you today. I had
to guard your ass all night so I was still sleeping this morning."
saying any more he undid the tie on his shorts and dropped them down to
the floor and stepped out of them. His massive cock was already
beginning to emerge from the leathery base and it continued to harden
up as he stroked it.
turned and straddled the cot and lifted his tail and lowered his
asshole over Jake's mouth and waited while he continued to stroke his
asshole was covered in his old shit and Jake had no choice but to work
at it with his tongue until it was completely clean. The bull
then reached back with his left hand and pulled his butt cheek away a
bit to open his anus. It was obvious he wanted Jake's tongue right up in his
rectum. Jake complied and pointed his tongue and pushed it as
hard as he could until it spread the bull's anus and went inside.
He tongued the dirty sphincter while the bull moaned and continued to stroke himself.
felt the bull's massive
scrotum begin to tighten up on his chin as the guard moaned and stroked
cock harder while Jake tongued his ass and then suddenly the bull
stood back up and turned around as his breathing became short and he
jacked his massive cock even faster. He aimed the blunt end of
his long tool right
at Jake's face and grunted and a long, thick spurt of bull semen shot
out onto Jake's forehead. The bull grunted again and another jet
shot out onto his cheek.
The bull kept on moaning and jacking his thick cock and spurt after spurt of his cum shot out to cover Jake's face.
he finished, the bull flicked the end of his softening cock a few times
at Jake's face to get the last oozing bits cum off and then stepped
back into his shorts and pulled them up and walked out of the tent
without a word.
He'd left Jake lying there, tied to the bed, with thick bull semen coating his face.
No sooner had the one guard left, than the other one came in and pulled down his shorts.
chuckled and said, "I see you're one of those gay boys who likes to put
on facial cream when you go to sleep. I think you missed a few
spots. I can help you with that."
He then pushed the wide, blunt end of his cock against Jake's lips and the man had no choice but to open wide and let him in.
bull did not last long at all. He began to grunt and thrust at
Jake's mouth but he didn't push himself down into Jake's throat.
He stroked his shaft while he humped at Jake's face with just the
head of his cock and before long he grunted and a thick spurt of his
cum shot out into Jake's mouth. The bull then pulled his cock out
and continued to stroke while he shot the rest of his load out onto
Jake's face to merge with the thick cum from the other guard.
he was done and his cock began to soften up he shook it over Jake's
face to make sure every last drop of cum fell on him while it retracted
back into its base.
He pulled up his shorts and walked out to return to his post.
waited patiently for Rhokki to return while the cum oozed down his face
and began to dry. He hoped the big cat would keep his cool when
he saw what the guards had done.
A little more than an hour passed and it was completely dark outside by the time the lion returned.
took one look at Jake's face and he stopped and hesitated and let out a low growl as though he
was going to turn around and go deal with the guards, but then he shook
himself and came forward and dropped the rucksack he was carrying
beside the cot and untied Jake.
He then went to get the cloth and bucket.
held out his hand to take the cloth and clean his own face but the lion
ignored it and proceeded to clean Jake's face thoroughly himself.
will be a pleasure to do what I am about to do to them," the lion
growled in a low voice as he finished and then kissed Jake on the
Jake smiled and said, "I won't mourn their passing either. I'm ready when you are."
nodded and said, "I have disabled the scout ship. Both routing modules are in the rucksack with our food and water.
We are ready, but for one thing."
He pulled out the bed pan from under the cot and smiled as he handed it to Jake.
took it and filled it up then handed it back and said, "There, my part
was a complete success. You should have no problem with the rest."
The lion smiled and set the bed pan down as Jake lay back on the bed again.
Rhokki tied him up but simply wrapped the cord around Jake's right ankle loosely.
He then picked up the pan and walked out of the tent.
immediately began to work his foot while he waited for the guard to
peek in. Sure enough, the guard's head appeared while Jake was
making a show of trying to get his foot free and the guard looked
closer and realized the bindings weren't done up.
He muttered something to the other guard and then came right in the tent again.
walked up to Jake and stood over him and said, "Well, look at our
little escape artist here. You'd need more than one foot free to
get out of here you know. You wouldn't last more than a few
minutes out there anyway even if you got away somehow. There are
predators out there that would make you shit yourself."
wasn't really trying to get away. I just missed your cock so much
already, I wanted to give you an excuse to come back in here," Jake
bull chuckled and said, "I knew you loved every minute of the treatment
you've been getting. I just came on you an hour ago, but I guess
I can coax another
load out if you're that desperate for my spunk. I'm not hard
though, you'll have to fluff it up for me."
The bull then undid
his shorts and pushed them down to his ankles and Jake made a point of moaning at the sight of the bull's
sweaty genitals as they were released and the bull chuckled again.
Jake just wanted to keep the level of sound up a bit to try to
muffle anything going on outside.
The bull took the thick, flaccid, leathery base of his cock in hand and moved it towards Jake's mouth.
opened wide and let the bull slip the dirty end of it in to his mouth
and he moaned fairly loudly as he sucked. He could feel it
stiffening up already and the blunt, pink, fleshy end of the bull's
penis began to stretch out of the base into Jake's mouth.
was definitely practiced at being stealthy because Jake did not even
realize the big cat was in the tent before he saw a large paw quickly cover the
bull's face while another clamped on to the back of his head and the
lion twisted violently and Jake heard the sickening crunch of the
bull's vertebrae separating and severing his spinal cord.
Rhokki had a cold look in his eye and an unsettling smile on his face as he lowered the bull's limp body to the floor.
began to untie Jake as he said, "The leather shorts you were wearing
when they captured you are in the rucksack. Put them on, then
come out and help me with the guards. I will need to turn out the
light now to make the rest of the camp think we're asleep if they look this way."
Jake nodded and reached into the sack to get his shorts out.
gathered up the cords that had been used to keep Jake tied up and he
turned out the light, plunging the tent into pitch darkness, and then
he went outside.
As Jake pulled up his shorts and fumbled to tie
them in the darkness, he could hear a rustling sound against the
outside of the tent.
Rhokki came back inside and asked Jake to help him with the other guard's corpse.
carried the body outside and Jake saw that the first guard had been
tied against the pole at one corner of the large tent in a standing
position. In the near total darkness it looked like he was at his
post as normal.
They maneuvered the other body to the pole at the other
corner and Jake held him up while Rhokki tied him the same way with the
cord around his neck and another using the back of his shorts to
hold him against the pole while his knees were locked to keep him
It looked a little odd but should be convincing enough
in the darkness to fool anyone else who wandered through the camp to
the latrines and looked over this way. It would look
like the tent was still guarded.
They each took a rucksack and
Rhokki led the way out to the edge of the camp. They circled it
to the back on the side opposite from the volcano and they headed out
through the trees into an open field beyond.
They ran through
the chest high grasses as Rhokki led them toward the river at a very shallow angle
to make it clear their direction was continuing away from the volcano.
They ran for about thirty minutes before they finally entered the river. It was very
shallow so they waded across, still following the same angle away from the volcano, and emerged from the other side.
followed along the river bank a little ways and then Rhokki led them
out and away from it just as the river began to turn a bit. They
came across a rocky area. This was where they would try to leave
no further tracks.
They walked careful now on top of the larger
rocks so as not to disturb any and not leave any tracks in dirt or sand
anywhere. They hopped from rock to rock back towards the river
and entered it again.
Now they waded as fast as they could against the flow in the middle of the river back in the direction towards the volcano.
less than an hour they were back alongside the camp but it was a
ways away from the river in a large stand of trees and it was pitch
dark and nobody could possibly see them here.
heard no sound so it seemed nobody had discovered their escape yet.
The more time passed the less likely it would be that they would
be discovered until morning.
continued on as fast as they could go for a couple of hours before
Rhokki decided they were not making good enough time in the water and would have to
leave the river and strike out on foot towards the volcano at the
fastest pace they could manage. They had done enough to put the
bulls on the wrong track and it didn't matter now if they left traces.
The bulls would eventually know their intent and would pick up
their trail at the site of Komakwa's trial anyhow.
through the night they ran with Rhokki at the lead. They stopped
only occasionally to rest briefly, and for Rhokki to get his bearings
and ensure that they were traveling the fastest route possible.
was the first time Jake had ever really worked his new body hard and he
was impressed with it. He was not really getting tired at all,
even after they'd been running for hours. His joints did not
ache, his muscles were fine and his heart and lungs were like well-oiled
machines that just kept putting out the power. The favors must be
working absolutely every muscle in his body including his heart and his
diaphragm and keeping them all in perfect shape. He had no problem
whatsoever keeping up with the big cat as he ran and Jake felt like he
could maintain this pace for days if he had to.
There was no sign of any pursuit, nor did they expect to see any.
They continued right through until dawn and they saw the volcano looming large and close now.
angled straight towards its base through the thick forest that
surrounded it until they suddenly came to a clearing from which they
could see right up the side of the volcano to its smoking summit.
should retreat back into the trees and wait here," Rhokki said, "We do
not know exactly where they will drop Komakwa but we should be able to
see and hear the shuttle as it approaches and we can see where it
lands. It should arrive within the hour."
Jake nodded and they went back into the trees to wait.
had made good time and arrived well before the shuttle.
or even a few hours ago probably, the camp would know that they'd
escaped and would have tracked them to the river and be searching for
them in the wrong direction. Even if they'd decided to search in
both directions it would be a slow process for them and it would be
hours before they found their tracks emerging and heading toward the
likely not even try to use their scout craft to search for them now
that there was daylight to allow it. It would be far too risky to
take the ship out when the ascendance committee shuttle was expected to
fly over at any time. They had to keep the scout ship hidden
under its camouflage netting until after the appointed time for
Komakwa's ceremony. Even if they had tried to use the ship and
realized it had been sabotaged and decided to send a party on foot to
retrieve Komakwa, they would still be hours away. They should be
able to get Mak and then still have hours to circle out inland and
further away from the river and begin to head back towards the camp to
try to get to the scout ship and steal it.
It suddenly occurred to Jake that there might be a simpler solution to all of this.
we can get to the ascendance committee's shuttle before it takes off,
couldn't we just come out of hiding and tell Mogwo everything?" Jake
That would not be wise. We know that Troska is insane and
we don't really know how he might react if we corner him. We also
know that the pilot at least will be on Troska's side. We do not
know how many others in the party will be in his pocket. In any
case, we would be putting not only Komakwa and his father at risk, but
their entire race as well. Mogwo still has his favors. The
Zeth device has been shut down so as not to cause the duplication issue
to occur with Mogwo or anyone else on the shuttle. That means
First Ones can see and hear everything Mogwo sees and hears.
monitoring systems would flag anything suspicious. If they
see me here, as a member of the rhuxus race that is now known to
conspired with the Zeths, a race that they attempted to completely
annihilate, or you, a duplicate of the other Jake who died under
suspicious circumstances and is currently in the process of being
resurrected, they will know that there is a threat to them here.
They may choose to act swiftly and decisively to eliminate it by
doing to the miquanowan world what they did to the rhuxus world.
The risk is far too great and billions of lives are at stake.
We need to stay hidden."
"You're right, I didn't think it through," Jake said.
smiled and said, "You cannot be faulted for looking for the quickest
solution to our predicament. If it makes you feel any better, I
can assure you that it will not be any more difficult for us to get back to the camp than it was to get this far."
Jake said, "I just wish we were at least armed. Weren't there any weapons we could have stolen
from the camp?"
were weapons, but they are all kept
locked away in containers inside the munitions tent. We could not
a direct confrontation with the bulls in any case. There are too
many of them and they are trained killers. As I said before, it
is in the nature of my
people to move stealthily and efficiently. Our best hope is to
never meet up with even one of them from this point forward. We
must stay hidden, and
stay moving," Rhokki said.
"Yes, but if any of them should happen to find us, we're unarmed and helpless," Jake said.
lion snarled baring his gleaming white and deadly looking teeth with
the nearly six inch long fangs, raised a large paw, and extended his
long, razor sharp claws and said, "Speak for yourself."
chuckled and said, "I'll just stay behind you then. The favors
keep my nails nice and short and they won't be much use in a fight."
Just then Jake saw
movement out of the corner of his eye. He looked over and saw two
long, black, six-legged, crocodile-shaped creatures scrambling out of the woods
into the clearing and racing across the open ground. He
recognized them immediately as the black-furred predators that had
attacked him and Mak on their first night here.
"I wonder what
the hell those things are doing out in the open in broad daylight?
They hunt at night and sleep during the day. They shouldn't
He was interrupted when a massive bird-like creature
burst out of the trees in pursuit of the black animals. It was at
least nine feet tall with incredibly muscular legs that ended at
four-toed, bird-like feet with ten-inch razor sharp claws. It had
stubby wings and was covered in a shaggy looking reddish-brown fur.
Its head was large with a bright red crest on top and it had a
long, powerful, curved, razor sharp beak that was at least two feet
long with a sharp hook at the end.
The creature raced across the
open ground and was on the lagging black-furred predator in seconds.
It stepped on it and its claws went right through the animal and
severed its spine and skewered it to the ground.
barely missed a beat as it continued racing forward toward the second
black animal while lowering its head and letting out a bloodcurdling
screech as it spread its long, curved beak. As it came upon the
black predator it turned its head sideways and snapped its beak shut,
slicing the animal nearly in half.
Jake and Rhokki watched as
the large bird skidded to a stop and then turned and walked slowly back
to the creature it had just killed. It placed one clawed foot on
the upper half of the creature and reached down with its beak and tore
a long strip of the animal's flesh off and began to consume it.
"Do you still think your claws will be enough for you out here?" Jake asked in a whisper.
Rhokki chuckled softly and said, "There's always someone with a bigger set of claws."
the large predator's meal was interrupted by an even louder and longer
version of its own screech that came from a long ways off across the
clearing and behind a large stand of trees.
The bird-like creature stopped what it was doing and stood alertly and looked around in the direction of the sound.
Suddenly, a massive version of the same bird came out from behind the stand of trees and began to lope towards the smaller bird.
first bird had to have been just a juvenile and this second one was an
adult. It was more than twice the size. Jake estimated it
would be close to twenty feet tall at the top of its head.
opened its massive beak wide and showed it's stubby, purple tongue and
screeched once more when it saw the smaller bird standing over the fresh kill
and the giant predator began to race toward it.
The smaller bird wasted no time and turned and ran as fast as it could back into the safety of the woods where it had emerged.
larger one slowed to a stop and screeched one last time and then turned
its head down and plucked the first of the two halves of the
black-furred predator off the ground and tilted its head back and
gulped it down in one go. It ate the second half the same way and
then moved on to the other dead predator and it picked the whole thing
up in its beak and in just a few bites managed to swallow it all down.
was in awe of the size of the creature. It could eat him or
Rhokki just as quickly and easily as it had the black furred predators
and it would likely still be hungry for more.
"You're right," Jake whispered, "That one's claws are definitely bigger."
"Indeed. I think we'll stick to the trees from now on," Rhokki whispered back.
creature looked around as if to see if there were anything else to eat
nearby, and then began to lumber slowly in the direction the smaller bird had
run, then it suddenly stopped and tilted its head up and sideways as
though listening for something in the air, then it turned and began to
run back to where it had come from like it was being chased.
wondered what the hell a predator of that size would run from and he
looked up to see if there was some sort of threat coming from the sky
From their location deep in the trees he couldn't see anything
back in the direction the predator had looked, but he began to feel a
familiar vibration in the air and suddenly there was a shadow from
overhead and a large shuttle passed over them and began to come down in
the clearing further ahead, almost at the stand of trees the giant
predator had just passed on its way back where it had come from.
"Let us go further back into the trees and make our way closer so that we might observe," Rhokki said.
followed him and they worked their way along deeper in the woods until
they came to a spot with some heavy brush blocking them from being
seen, but with a few spots they could peer through to observe the
They hunkered down and waited.
ramp extended down and shortly afterward several bulls emerged.
Two large and older bulls that Jake did not recognize came out
first. One of them was dressed in what looked almost like
ceremonial garb that would be worn by native Americans in one of their
ceremonies. It was an impressive looking outfit made of bleached
leather adorned with beads, fur trim, feathers and polished teeth and
claws from some sort of predators.
recognized the next bull
to emerge as Mogwo, Mak's father. He wore a simpler version of
the same type of bleached leather ceremonial garb. He walked to
the bottom of the
ramp to stand beside the official looking bull with a smile on his face
and he turned and
watched with obvious pride as his handsome and strapping son finally
emerged. He wore what Jake remembered seeing him in last. A
simple and rugged pair of leather shorts, and heavy hiking boots with
grinned as he came down the ramp and stopped, facing the two older
bulls and Jake's heart leapt with joy at the sight of him.
He looked happy and Jake couldn't wait to get out there and be with him again at last.
last one to emerge from the shuttle was Troska. He wore a much
more subdued version of ceremonial garb that was died black and had red
and grey beads attached to it in various patterns and black and white
feathers and a necklace of teeth and claws. He also carried a
very tall, black staff with a ball at the top that looked as though it
was made of some sort of polished stone.
When Troska reached the
bottom of the ramp the gathering rearranged themselves with the leader
of the ceremony standing with Troska at his side, and Mogwo standing
and facing them with Mak at his side.
Jake couldn't see properly
so he carefully moved forward through the brush to get a better vantage
point near the edge of the trees.
"Be careful. Do not be seen!" Rhokki hissed quietly.
Jake ignored him and continued to move closer. This was an important moment in Mak's life and Jake wanted to witness it.
moved out of the bushes he was hiding in and went behind some trees for
cover. He came around a thick tree trunk to another set of bushes
just next to the clearing and carefully and quietly pushed his way into
the bushes. He accidentally snapped a twig on the ground just as
his face emerged through the other side of the bushes. He moved
quickly backward to hide himself again but it was too late.
saw Troska's face turn toward the sound and the mad bull's one functioning
eye locked right on Jake's and opened wide and the bull's face began to
twist into a look of surprise, and then rage.
Jake's heart began to hammer in his chest. He'd given himself away.
Troska stayed quiet and then began to work his way back from the group as though to come over to Jake's position.
couldn't risk trying to run. It would make too much noise if he
were to scramble out of the bushes in a rush and it might expose him to
the whole group. It appeared only Troska had seen him.
He kicked himself for his stupidity. He'd only wanted to see Mak's ceremony up close and he'd put them all at risk.
Suddenly Mogwo noticed Troska's movement and he cleared his throat and said, "Is there a problem, Troska?"
The old butler looked at Mogwo and paused a moment to think, then said, "No, sir. There is no problem."
"Then kindly return to your position and keep still. I will not have you ruin this moment for my son," Mogwo warned.
The old bull sheepishly returned to his position and briefly glared toward Jake's hiding place.
dawned on Jake that they were still perfectly safe. Troska
couldn't risk revealing Jake to the rest of the group any more than
Jake could risk revealing himself. It would mean the death of
Troska and the end of his entire militant group if Mogwo found out what
was going on and it would put their entire race at risk if the First
Ones saw what was happening through Mogwo's eyes. The enraged
butler could do absolutely nothing but keep quiet.
It made Jake
feel good to know that Troska would have to sit and stew on the long
flight back to their home world, knowing full well that as soon as the shuttle took off, Jake and Mak
would be back together and on the run from him. It would drive
the old bull even more insane.
There was nothing Troska could do
until he arrived back on their planet and contacted the camp. Of
course, it made no difference to Jake, Rhokki and Mak because the camp
would by now already be well aware that they had escaped. His
revealing himself to Troska made absolutely no difference in the end
except to make the old bull suffer and that was a good thing.
kept stealing glances towards Jake's hiding spot so Jake carefully and
quietly extended his hand through the bushes and he flipped his middle
finger up at the butler. Troska saw the finger and raised one
eyebrow and then looked away again.
Jake realized the gesture
was likely completely meaningless to the bull so he pulled his hand
back in. It had felt good to do it anyway. He enjoyed
watching Troska silently seethe. The old butler clung on to his
staff with a death grip. Jake was sure the mad bull was already
imagining bringing it down repeatedly on his skull and laughing with
glee as he did it.
Everyone appeared to be ready so the ceremony began.
world was once our home," the leader of the ceremony intoned as he
raised his arms to indicate the land around them, "One day we will return to it. We were a proud
people and we were struck low by the power of the ancients as a test of
our courage and resolve."
At the old bull's words the thought
suddenly entered Jake's mind that maybe they were right in a very
literal sense. It could easily have been the First Ones that
pushed this planet's moon into an unstable orbit, just to see how the
bulls would react to the coming cataclysm. It was just the sort of entertainment they enjoyed.
The old bull continued, "We will prove ourselves worthy and one day return to claim this sacred land as our home once more."
He then turned to Mogwo and asked, "What do you bring us to aid us in our goal?"
"I bring you the flesh of my flesh, my son," Mogwo replied solemnly.
old bull looked Mak over briefly and then said, "This world is harsh
and unforgiving. Only the strongest of our men can survive here.
What need have we of a boy?"
"He is no boy. He is a man," Mogwo said with obvious heartfelt conviction.
is no man until he has proved himself so," the old bull retorted, "He must brave the
hardships of this world with no outside aid of any kind. He must
show the courage and resourcefulness required to make a home of this
world. Will the boy do precisely as his fathers tells him, as is
the custom of our children?"
Mogwo smiled and said, "No, he will
not. As I have said, he is no boy. He is the world to me
but he is a man and must speak for himself. I relinquish the
right to guide his life and he must now decide his own fate."
Mak's chest swelled with pride as his father spoke and Jake smiled as he watched from his hiding place.
The leader of the ceremony then nodded and turned to face Mak directly and said, "What is your name, boy?"
set his broad shoulders back and puffed out his muscular chest further
and said in a deep voice that perfectly matched his fathers, "I am no
boy. I am a man. My name is Komakwa."
Komakwa. If you are a man as you say, then you will have no
trouble showing it by besting the land itself and the dangers it holds.
Will you submit to forty days in the wilderness to prove your
The leader nodded again and said, "I would not ask you to do this task completely unarmed.
We will provide you all that you should need to survive this
The old bull then turned to face Troska and nodded at him.
mad bull reached to his side and pulled out a large and deadly looking
knife with an ornately carved bone handle. He hesitated for a few
moments, suddenly realizing that he was about to give the young bull a
tool that would only help him to get away from Troska once the shuttle
left and Jake couldn't help but smile at the wonderful irony.
Mogwo cleared his throat impatiently and Troska seemed to snap out of it.
held up the knife and said his lines, "This weapon has been blessed by our
priests. It holds within its handle the spirits of those who
perished on this world. May they guide your blade and show you
the way to conquer this sacred land for our people once more."
He turned the knife to hand it with the handle facing Mak.
young bull took it from his hand and slipped it into a sheath he
already had hanging at his hip just as the ground shook and the volcano
rumbled briefly and belched a thick cloud of smoke from the crater at
Everyone turned and looked up but there was no further activity from the volcano.
leader of the ceremony smiled as he turned back to Mak and said, "The
world trembles in fear of you already. It is a good sign."
Mak smiled and looked at his father and Mogwo smiled back.
leader of the ceremony put his large hand on Mak's shoulder and
addressed the others as he said,
"It is time for us to leave this place. I have no doubt that when
we return here in forty
days we will find no sign of this boy. In his place we will find
man, proud and strong. Forged in the unforgiving crucible of this
harsh world and ready to claim his own place among our people."
old bull stepped back and Mogwo stepped up and put his hand on Mak's
shoulder and smiled at him as tears welled in his eyes. The two stared at each other for a moment and then Mak
suddenly reached out and put his arms around his father's and Mogwo hugged him hard for a few moments, then pulled back and
rubbed his big hand on top of his boy's head for the last time.
When next they met they would both be men.
Mogwo then turned to go up the ramp into the shuttle.
The rest of the entourage followed him in with Troska taking up the rear.
grizzled old butler turned and stared back at Jake's hiding spot with
his one good eye and his face was twisted in hatred. He knew he
might have lost his chance to kill them and he would have to sit on the
shuttle with the others for the full twelve hour flight back to their
home world knowing that they were slipping further and further from his
grasp with every passing hour.
He reluctantly turned and entered the shuttle as the ramp began to rise back up.
wanted to race out and latch on to Mak right away, but he knew he had
to wait until the shuttle took off or risk being seen.
to hear and then feel the vibrating hum of the anti-fermion generators
powering up as the craft began to lift into a hover over the ground.
heard a noise behind him and felt Rhokki hook a claw onto the waistband
at the back of Jake's shorts and the big cat said, "Stay hidden until
the shuttle is truly gone. I believe it is their custom to slowly
circle the area to ensure that the boy is truly alone before they head
back to their home world."
Jake was anxious but he held his
ground as the shuttle slowly lifted up and then began to move forward
in an ever growing circle around Mak.
It rose higher and
higher and then finally Jake heard the hiss and crackle of the air
being superheated as the plasma drive kicked in and the long blue cone
emerged from the back of the ship and it began to tilt upward and head
out of the planet's atmosphere.
Mak looked around and then began to walk towards the tree line a little ways away from where Jake and Rhokki were hiding.
lion continued to hold Jake just a bit longer until the plasma thrust
from the ship was just a very tiny blue dot before he finally let Jake
Jake plunged out of the bushes and ran toward the young bull.
turned suddenly at the sound while reaching for his knife, but when he
saw Jake his face was split by a wide grin and rushed toward him and
nearly bowled Jake over as they crashed into each other and held on
Jake felt like his heart was going to explode it was so full of joy at having Mak back in his arms again.
"I missed you so much, Mak. I love you."
love you too. I was so worried not knowing what might be
happening to you over here," Mak said as he increased the strength of
Rhokki emerged from the bushes and walked towards them with a smile on his face.
"I hate to interrupt this beautiful reunion but there is no time to lose. We need to get moving, right now," he said.
pulled back and said, "What's going on? I thought they were gonna
send the ship to pick me up in an hour or so? Why did they let
you two come for me?"
"We need to get moving as we talk," Jake said, "We're on the run from them."
led the way and ran back toward the trees, but stayed out in the open
along the tree line for the time being to allow them to move more
quickly back toward the camp, but at an angle slightly away from the
river and the path the bulls would likely take to reach the clearing to
Jake and Mak followed and as they ran along the young
bull asked, "Why are we on the run? What's going on? I
thought everything was over once I convinced my father to get his
Jake said, "Rhokki overheard Troska talking to
one of the men back at the camp yesterday. He said that now that
you convinced your dad, he had no use for me or you any longer.
He's insane and he hates me. If I don't miss my guess he'll
probably kill us both with his bare hands. The only question is
which one of us he'll kill first. I guess it depends on which one
he hates the most. I think he hates me just enough to kill you
first and make me watch."
Mak shouted, "Fuck! That old man
is as crooked as the day is long. He smiled at me before we left
and said all I had to do now in order to finally be back with you again
was to wait patiently here to be picked up."
is a half truth at best," Jake said, "You would have been back with me,
and we both would be tied up and waiting for him to get back and finish
us off. He planned to kill us both and let your father think you
didn't survive the trial. Once your father has his favors purged
Troska can tell Mogwo the whole truth about the First Ones and how you
wanted him to help your world get free of them. He would probably
tell Mogwo that the best way to honor your memory would be to make it
happen. There's no doubt
your father would play along gladly with anything Troska asked him to
do, so he didn't need you anymore. If he didn't need you, he sure
as hell didn't need me. He's insane, so taking our lives would
only make him happy."
Mak shook his head as he ran and said, "I
can't believe I fell for his lies again. He told me if I could
convince my dad to purge his favors and join the religion while I was
on my trial he would have no need to keep us apart anymore and we could
be together for the rest of our lives. He was sort of telling the
truth, just like you said, yet behind the truth was a different truth.
I've had enough. If I see that old bastard again he's the
one that won't be walking away. I still need to give him this
knife back at the end of the trial. I would be happy to stick it
right in his chest and he can do whatever the hell he wants with it
Rhokki chuckled from ahead of them and said, "I like the way you
think. My people like to think ourselves clever enough to see
through the facade straight to a person's true character and we do not
like to be duped. We have a saying that goes, 'Fool me once,
shame on me. Fool me twice, and you will fool no other.' We
aren't really poets so things rarely rhyme, but the bottom line is we
do not take betrayal lightly. He has proved he has no honor and
no remorse. He does not deserve to breathe the same air as those
who do. His life is forfeit. By taking it from him we would
only be protecting any others he would crush beneath his heel in the
"Ordinarily I would say that would be a bit extreme, but I'm willing to bend in Troska's case," Jake said.
said, "I have seen with my own eyes that you are kind and tolerant
almost to a fault so it surprises me that you would actually allow
Troska to be killed. Tell me, if I were to offer you the ability
to press one button and set their entire camp and all of its
surroundings ablaze with all of the bulls in it, would you do it?"
I wouldn't. I may have wished for their deaths in my mind
occasionally or fantasized about it, but I couldn't actually kill them all in
cold blood," Jake said.
"Even after all you have endured at their hands for the past two weeks?" Rhokki pressed.
wasn't so bad. It did no damage of any kind. It didn't
change me. It had no lasting effect of any sort. Does it really warrant taking all of those lives?" Jake asked.
one of the many things that impresses me about you," the big cat said, "You remained completely in control
of yourself in the face of terrible trials at the hands of lesser men. I do
wish you could teach me some of your restraint. Before you do
though, I may just press that button myself once we are aboard my
people's ship. We are slightly more pragmatic than you. The
way I see it, allowing those men to live is the same as encouraging
them to do the same atrocities to others in future. They have proved
themselves unworthy of living among real men and I would feel nothing
were I to take their undeserved lives from them."
"Just what the hell are you two talking about?" Mak asked, "What did they do to you, Jake?"
I couldn't handle. You don't need to worry about it. It's
over. I'm absolutely fine. Rhokki helped me get through it.
It would have been hard if he wasn't there. Maybe it would
be different if he wasn't. Maybe I would have gone off the deep
end, but he was there and he kept me grounded. No matter what
they did I could look forward to him taking care of me at the end of
the day and making me feel like a person again."
Rhokki looked over his shoulder at Jake and smiled at him as they ran along and Jake smiled back.
what did they do?" Mak asked, "Troska told me you were being treated
well and, like an idiot, I believed him. Rhokki, will you tell me?"
am sorry. That is for Jake to do. I can only say that I
would not have been able to last beyond one day. I would have
flown into a rage and attacked them, and they would have killed me
outright for it. They would likely have done the same to Jake had
he retaliated against them and he would not be here with you now if he
had the same lack of control as I do. Jake has an inner strength
and self-control that I could only ever dream of having. He is
truly an impressive man."
Mak heard the depth of feeling in
Rhokki's voice and said, "You two have grown really close over the last
two weeks, haven't you? I could hear it in Jake's voice any time
he mentioned you when we talked on the comm screen every night."
said nothing, but Jake said, "Yes. He was all I had to keep me
from losing hope each day. He cared for me after Troska bashed my
head and he continued to take care of me every night after that.
He didn't really have to, but he went out of his way to make me
comfortable and to help me out. They did everything they could to
strip my manhood from me and he did the simplest things to make me feel
like myself. He means a lot to me. I have strong feelings
"I have very strong feelings for you too, Jake.
You are an honorable and beautiful man and it has given me no end
of pleasure to care for you. I can honestly say that I am almost
sorry that part is over for us," Rhokki said.
Mak said nothing more and neither did the others.
continued to run through the day, stopping occasionally to rest and eat
and drink a bit from their rucksacks of food and then they pushed
At one point Mak asked, "Where the heck are we going anyway? It seems to me we're heading back to where Troska's camp is."
are indeed," Rhokki said, "It was Jake's idea. They will
never expect us to run back to their camp. As they get further
and further away from it in search of us, we move closer and closer
back towards it. Our intent is to steal their scout ship and have
you fly it out of there. I have taken the antimatter routing
modules and they are in our possession. That ship can go nowhere
without them. We will sneak in under cover of darkness and make
our true escape then."
"That's awesome! Sneak right back in and take their own ship from them! I love it!" Mak exclaimed.
your last experience with this type of ship was to crash it, I trust
that you can still recall how to fly one successfully. There are
only two seats in it and there are three of us so one would have a
fairly hard landing in a crash. I tend to be a nervous flier.
I am much more comfortable with four feet on the ground," Rhokki
"Is that what Jake told you? That I crashed our ship?" Mak asked.
"No, but he didn't need to. You were the pilot were you not?"
"Yeah, but...oh, never mind," Mak said and chuckled.
followed the line of trees that bordered the open plains for as long as
they could. They didn't want to go out into the open and risk
being seen by anyone or caught by one of the large predatory birds, but
they didn't want to enter into the forest and have to run slower, even
though it was a more direct route back to the camp.
they had no choice and they had to go back into the thicker forest as
the tree line began to veer away from the direction they needed to go.
Mak led the way as he was the largest with the thickest hide and a
large enough knife to cut his way through thicker weeds and vines that
got in the way. He was big enough to push his way through and
clear a path that made it easier for the others to follow behind him.
He led on with cues from Rhokki until the light began to soften a
little into evening and finally Rhokki called a halt and led them into
the midst of some very thick shrubs in the middle of a big stand of
"We are very near the camp but we will have to cross the
open field to get to it and it is too light to proceed yet. We
should rest here for a few hours until darkness sets in."
The big cat sat and looked at the others quietly.
sat on the ground cross-legged and smiled up at Jake. Jake smiled
back and walked over and sat in the young bull's lap and wrapped his
arms and legs around him.
The two sat quietly, holding each other while they caught their breaths and began to cool off from their hard run.
rubbed his cheek against Jake's and he pulled his head back and kissed
him on the lips and said, "I'm so glad you're OK and we're back
together again. It's all I could think about for the last two
"You're the other thing that kept me going," Jake said,
"Any time things were getting a bit too rough I would just think of
seeing you again and it would lift my spirits. You mean
everything to me now, Mak. I love you so much."
"I love you too," Mak said and squeezed him tightly again.
Jake got up and said, "I need to just go and use the bushes really quick. It could be a long flight once we get going."
Mak smiled up at him as he walked off, then he turned to face Rhokki and watched him for a few moments.
suddenly got up and walked over to the big cat and then knelt down and
wrapped his massive arms around Rhokki's neck and said, "Thank you so
much for taking care of him for me. I'm so glad he had you there
with him. It would break my heart to think of him going through
whatever it was they did to him alone."
Rhokki put his paw on
Mak's back and said, "You are truly a good person. I have heard
the deep love he feels for you in his voice and seen it in his eyes any
time he spoke of you. He is a wonderful man. It was my pleasure to take care of him for
Mak sat back and faced the lion directly and said, "You love him, don't you?"
stayed quiet for a moment as if deciding what he should say, and finally
said, "I cannot lie, it is not in my nature. I love him very
Mak smiled and said, "Did you tell him?"
"Not exactly, no."
should tell him. I know Jake and I can tell he loves you too.
It's obvious. You shouldn't let another minute go by
without letting each other know in case anything happens to us.
If you're worried about how I feel about it, don't. I love
Jake more than I could ever imagine loving anyone else and I feel
secure in the knowledge that he loves me that much right back. I
want him to be as happy as he can be. You're a terrific guy and
if he loves you that makes me happy. If you love him back that
will make him happy and that makes me happy too."
and said, "You are indeed a wonderful person Komakwa. I don't
think I could have ever let Jake know how strongly I felt about him
without your blessing."
"Call me Mak."
Rhokki nodded and said, "Thank you, Mak."
heard Jake coming back and Mak stood and met him and kissed Jake on the
cheek and smiled knowingly at him, then said, "My turn to use the
He walked off into the forest and looked back at
Rhokki and jerked his head toward Jake just before he disappeared into
Jake saw the obvious gesture and turned to face Rhokki and said, "What was that about?"
Rhokki smiled and said, "Mak is a very good person and he loves you very much."
Jake smiled and said, "That's not news to me. I love him more than I could ever imagine loving anyone."
Rhokki chuckled and said, "That is precisely what he said of his feelings toward you. He also asked me what my feelings were toward you and I had to tell him the truth."
"The truth?" Jake asked.
"Yes, I told him I love you. He seemed quite pleased."
Jake smiled and said, "Don't you think you should have told me first?"
said, "You're right, and I apologize, but he dragged it out of me.
I do love you, Jake. I have for some time now. It
truly was a unique pleasure caring for you and I feel a strong bond
with you that I have never felt with anyone before. I find
you to be the single most beautiful male I have ever had the pleasure
of laying my eyes on. It tore me apart as I watched those animals
throw that plant on you and I thought that you were going to die
without ever knowing how I felt about you. I came very close to
telling you right afterward in our tent, but I felt it would complicate
things between you and Komakwa. I do not know how it is with your
people. My people are polyamorous by nature. Our males take
many wives into our pride. Being homosexual means the distinction
between husband and wife becomes meaningless for me. From what I
understand, it is much the same with Mak's people. Their males
traditionally take many wives and in their past also took many male
lovers as they evolved the specialization to make male on male
sexuality equally valid."
Jake walked up to Rhokki and knelt down
and kissed him on the lips and hugged him tightly and said, "I love you
too. I've loved your for quite a while now. I couldn't help
it. You treated me with such kindness and tenderness. You
showed what a loving soul you have. You're easily the most
attractive person I've ever seen. You're breathtakingly
beautiful. I feel so comfortable with you, like we fit together
well. It really bothered me to have you make me feel so good
every night but not be able to do anything for you. I couldn't do
it without finding out how Mak felt first."
"Do not feel bad.
I experienced great satisfaction by pleasing you. I look
forward to exploring you much more. I long to feel you inside of
me. I have never been with a male before and I have been filled
with detailed fantasies about you ever since I first saw you two weeks
ago. I know that things may not be straightforward for us
sexually due to the nature of my equipment, but I am confident that we
will find ways to please each other. It feels wonderfully freeing
just to be able to talk openly to you about it."
"I can't tell
you how much I look forward to exploring you too," Jake said, "What you
were saying about the Matchmakers modifying us to increase our desire
for sex seems to be completely accurate. I have an almost
insatiable appetite for it now and it's hard for me to control.
I've had plenty of fantasies about you. I intend to find
out how good of a job they did strengthening me back there. I
want that incredible tool of yours inside me, Rhokki. I can't
wait to have the chance to see just how well we really fit."
was getting hard just thinking about it but he didn't feel the time was
right just now. They were in a life and death situation and they
needed to keep their wits about them.
"You two are so cute together," Mak said as he came back to their hiding spot.
smiled and said, "I believe it might be a good time for me to go and
dig a hole and make a deposit while the two of you talk. I will
Mak smiled and watched the beautiful cat slip away into the forest and then he turned to Jake and grinned.
case you're wondering, I'm thrilled that you two love each other.
Rhokki is awesome and I can't wait to get to know him better,"
Mak said as he came to sit on the ground next to Jake and then he lay
back and put his arms behind his head.
Jake lay down beside him
and propped his head up on one elbow to face Mak and said, "You're a
pretty special guy. I love you so much. I can honestly say
it doesn't matter how many other people I fall in love with, you will
always be my true love. I could never love anyone as much as I
Mak rolled onto his side to face Jake and put his arms around him, then rolled onto his back and pulled Jake up on to him.
feel the same way about you. I don't love anyone else right now,
but I can't help but think that I will come to love Rhokki for the same
reasons you did once I get to know him. It doesn't really matter
to me how many people you love or how many I love, you will always be
my man. You're all I really need in the whole universe. I'm
so happy to have you back in my arms."
They kissed each other
tenderly and rubbed against each other a bit. Mak's cock was
growing hard and so was Jake's, but neither one of them made any move
to take things further. It just wasn't the right time.
Jake lay quietly atop Mak with his arms around the young bull's thick neck and Komakwa kept his arms wrapped around Jake.
came back and smiled at the scene and said, "My people tend to start to
feel more alive when darkness comes. I do not feel any need of
rest at the moment. Mak will be piloting the ship on what may be
a long flight. The two of you should take a short rest while I
keep watch. We have a few hours before total darkness and that
much sleep should carry you quite a bit further later on."
you sure?" Jake asked, "You remember those furry black things we saw
get eaten by the big bird earlier? They start to come into their
own at night too. Mak and I had a tangle with some of them a
while back. Only fire keeps them away."
and said, "I know the animals you speak of. They are nothing to
me. I have enjoyed hunting several of them for sport already.
They still need line of sight for their night vision but my sixth
sense allows me to feel their eclectic field from behind trees and
obstacles long before they know I'm there. We have nothing to
worry about from them. Sleep and enjoy each other's company in
peace for a few hours before we need to get moving again. I will watch over you and I will wake you when it is time."
big cat walked up to them and lay right beside them and turned his head
and kissed Jake on the lips. He then kissed Mak on the cheek and
sat up again and turned to face towards the camp.
Jake and Mak
held each other and basked in the joy of being back together until
their weariness from the long run finally dragged them down to sleep.
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