**Read The Undead Wars web series to help familiarize yourself with the Kryllonian race from this story**
By V.R. Fable
Peace had tentatively settled over the Kryllonians. The guarantee of war made forgetting the past CYs impossible, after all there were lessons to be learned, but the hope that had spurred them to the stars renewed itself in the promise of at least a few CYs without war. Certain that they would not restart the war with the Ith’als, the Kryllonian king, King Bethalisar, proclaimed that the return to exploration for other life would begin again with more caution than was exercised for their first encounter. Standing in front of a throng of his beloved subjects, King Bethalisar told them of the future, of the restored hope, of the unquenchable thirst for other life, and for the desire to love and live well, no matter who they may find.
The proclamation was met with festivals that lasted for half a CYThe abbreviated version of Cosmic Years.
Cosmic Years - In order to have continuity throughout the Alpha Universe, one planet was used as the staple for the Cosmic Time line. This planet (named Urth) was believed to be at the center of the universe. It has an annular solar rotation of 365 days.. Peace, however temporary, was welcomed by this species built for pleasure and entertainment. War had not come naturally and its negative effects would scar the species for years. But the return to exploration was enough to turn a concerned worry for the future into the Kryllonian’s more natural love of life with its innumerable possibilities.
The festival included the development of a plan for exploration, a more certain way of finding life more in tune with the Kryllonian philosophy. Undeterred by the tragic turn of their first finding of other intelligent creatures, the Kryllonians went to work designing new and better spacecrafts; equipment that would make life luxurious and would encourage a positive atmosphere for whomever they may find. Those who designed the best ships were allowed to captain and crew their ships. The Kryllonian way was to always reward those for their work, even when lack of experience made this a less than prudent move. Perhaps if the Kryllonians had used one of their seasoned military crews and captains instead of using the designers as ambassadors, things would have turned out differently. But they did not. And the ensuing events lead to much graver dangers for the clueless crew.
After all the pomp and circumstance the Kryllonian felt was necessary to properly send off these brave crew, the ship, called Friendship, was launched into unknown realms and a future that none could have guessed.
Nearly half a CYThe abbreviated version of Cosmic Years.
Cosmic Years - In order to have continuity throughout the Alpha Universe, one planet was used as the staple for the Cosmic Time line. This planet (named Urth) was believed to be at the center of the universe. It has an annular solar rotation of 365 days. went by with only the usual issues. Engineering stayed busy working on systems that had been impressive on paper, but were more difficult to maintain in reality. Being more lax and less structured, the crew was less efficient at correcting the problems. What they learned, they shared with those back home. At first the reports were scattered and almost incoherent, but with time came structure and a hierarchy. Fighting was not a part of typical Kryllonian behavior, but tempers occasionally ran high. Peaceful solutions were quick to come, but several of the Kryllonian were clearly more adept at space travel. Resentment did not exist, so those leads were generally listened to and honored when they made recommendations or gave orders. Unfortunately the Kryllonians who emerged as leads because of their knowledge tended to be more serious and focused. They would sometimes make comments on areas outside of maintenance and operations. Their word had come to be so well respected that their word began to dictate even over the more personal elements.
To commemorate half a year of travel, the crew was able to address to their people. Special garb had been tailored for the event before leaving, and carefully adjusted as figures shrunk from long hours of work and study. The appointed leads went over the talking points. The rest of the crew were happy to listen and do as they were told. What none planned on was the close proximity they were to a Darkstar tainted galaxy that they were nearing through space.
Cheers were raised as the crew appeared through their latest holographic communication network, an advanced technology that the crew was showcasing for the first time. They had discovered it only days before and were enthusiastic in its virtues and abilities. The King and Queen further honored the unspoken leads by naming planets after them within their own home system.
Unbeknownst to the Kryllonians, they were not the only ones picking up the communication.
A very young Daystar Disciple Resolve was on surveillance, his first solo test, learning the different methods of how to listen to the universe through meditation and focus. Amused by the lighthearted transmission and the obvious jubilation of these odd little life forms, the Disciple Resolve decided to break from his exercise and witness how these beings progressed. As he honed in on their location, his speed picked up. They were nearing a place where no life should tread. An area recently expunged of all life by a visiting Darkstar. The Daystars had driven the intruder out of the area, but the remaining dark energy still caused them problems and would be fatal to any mortal.
The transmission over, the Kryllonians continued their celebration. Only one Kryllonian did not revel in the events, too concerned with some odd readings that they had been receiving. All other stations were abandoned for the event, but Thakrahas was too interested in discovery to break away. Among the most well respected on board, Thakrahas had no previous space travel before this trip. It had been his dream to travel the stars that had made him a more serious person than before. He now knew when to enjoy life, and for him enjoying was in his work and learning.
Thakrahas was the only one who saw the dark, indescribable field coming through on the readouts. He tried to isolate the field, but it was too massive. He tried to plot a course around it, but it appeared to be surrounding them. How could they be encircled by a field? What was going on? And there was a spot, far too bright that was almost invisible on the system. As if the system had no way to describe it. Was it a meteor heading toward them? No, they had seen those before as they showed up brown on the readouts. Curious and a little concerned, Thakrahas headed to the celebration.
He passed along the corridor with windows to the outside. Space was beautiful, truly beautiful. But he could also make out something dark out there, much darker than the empty space filing so much of the universe. He did not look for the light that was on the other side. Thakrahas paused for a moment as he neared the door. What happened to the star that he had been watching as he progressed down the hall? Surely it had been just off to his left, but he could no longer see it. The darkness seemed to be moving rapidly. What was it?
As he reached the door, the ship rocked back and forth, throwing him to the ground. He could hear the change in the room in front of him, from excitement to shock, it seemed to be coming to life with a very different heart. A light soon pressed against his eyes. Thakrahas could hear the silence from the room that seconds ago had been on the brink of panic. Blinking against the light, Thakrahas thought he glimpsed something wrapping around the ship. Holding his eyes shut for what he thought was only a moment, he opened them.
The door burst open and another Kryllonian poured out.
“We’ve landed! How have we landed? Thakrahas! Thakrahas!” Jumbled questions and statements issued through the open doors, but the party stopped once they saw Thakrahas pushing himself from the ground.
“Thakrahas! We’ve landed. How did you land us. The reading in the other rooms are impossible to understand. Where are we?”
Thakrahas did not know and could not explain. But he closed his eyes and read something that was speaking into his mind, scribbling against his subconscious.
“Sorry for the bumpy ride. It was the only way to extract you from the darkness that tried to consume you. My apologies for your ship. It could not handle my presence and the circuitry is now fried. I was instructed to listen, but I could not sit by and watch you die. I have placed you within Titan territory, it being the nearest safe haven from where you were. I must now go confess and report. By the time deliberations are done, you will have moved on and will be at peace.”
“Thakrahas? What are you talking about?”
Shaking his head, Thakrahas had no idea. Again he spoke. “No, no, it is not Thakrahas who has done this. I left an imprint for him to read because I could not stay. Treat him well, it was not his fault.”
The Disciple Resolve need not worry. Kryllonians were not the type to shoot the messenger. Eager to learn about this being, they pressed Thakrahas.
“Another contact! We’ve made another contact! We must transmit this back.”
Thakrahas again closed his eyes. “A much better reaction than planned, but that is not possible. You are nowhere near where you were and in Titan territory it will be safest for you to settle and live until the Titans have a chance to study you. They are not likely to harm you, but they will assess. Give them time. There will be no returning to home, and no way to contact them through your regular communication. I have removed the advanced communication system from your ship. It can only attract unwanted attention. And welcome to your new home.”
The crew stood in stunned silence. Were they trapped? Was this really now their home? Who or what are Titans? And are they worse than the Ith’als? For the first time, the Kryllonians felt apprehension and uncertainty.
To be continued…