note: Creature Comforts takes place between the events of Thanks
for Sharing and Fractures.
Fan Fic by Rozi
eye scanned the stall of the commerce planet thoughtfully; a shiny
array of brightly coloured bottles caught his eye. They were quite
pretty, he thought, maybe I could just- he reached out to a glimmering
red bottle, pulled the stopper and took a long, deep, sniff.
smelt so familiar... it was just like...
replaced the stopper again. Man, he thought, I am a sad, pathetic
guy. I can't just buy this because of-
like it Peacekeeper?"
head turned, standing behind the stall was a plump woman with
long green hair and pitch-black skin. Her face was one of those
kindly saleswomen who would gently urge you into buying something.
rubbed the bottle with his thumb.
what the hell.
much for this?"
strode off to look for the others, he pushed his way through the
crowd and came across Chiana. The young Nebari was looking through
her cloth bag at her 'purchases'; she had lifted a bottle out
of the bag and was examining it. It was very similar to the one
Crichton had just bought.
or stolen?" He asked.
do you think?" She replied coyly.
let it go, he knew the answer. "Have you seen D'argo or Jool anywhere?"
went to buy supplies and I think little-miss-princess went shopping,"
answered Chiana, sniffing the bottle.
best get back to the transport pod soon."
looked at the bottle in John's hand "You got that 'cause it reminded
you of someone?"
What are you? I mean..." His voice trailed off under the
Nebari's skeptical gaze.
real cute John," she purred.
need to be like that, that's why I got this," she held up her
bottle "I stole this stuff from Zhaan's apothecary once. It's
Bassem oil, the smell kinda reminds me of her."
miss her a lot."
we all," muttered Crichton. Chiana sighed and quickly changed
the subject "I'll... go back to Transport pod and wait for you."
I'll go find D and Jool."
was huffing through the stalls angrily, fuming at the things on
offer, how dare they charge that much for so much... DREN!
Back home there were such beautiful things in the markets. Perfume,
clothes, pottery and books! How she missed it! She missed home,
her parents, family, friends and, she sobbed as she thought, little
little pet Tricket, poor thing; he must be missing her so much.
If he was still alive that is.
found herself staring at a secluded little stall, which housed
a menagerie of... creatures. Allsorts of strange snouts, beaks
and claws whistled, barked, squeaked and chatted from behind bars
and on top of stands at her as she edged closer.
My dear beautiful princess! See something you fancy?"
cry caught her slightly off guard; it came from the apparent owner
of the stall. He was a fat, short man with several pairs of arms
and one eye in the middle of his forehead. He grinned with a mouldy
set of jagged teeth "I'm sure we will find something worthy of
your... heavenly face! Why, to gaze upon it is to gaze upon the
goddess of beauty herself!"
couldn't help but feel flattered.
have many creatures from all over the Uncharted Territories, trelkez,
exotic me'cash (all the way from Delvia my good woman!) And the
best breeds of trunkas this side of Peacekeeper territory!"
gazed at the animals "I wouldn't mind something, well behaved
and easy to keep."
Look no further! How about a me'cash? They make an excellent pet,
their singing soothes you to sleep and also," he smacked his lips
"make an excellent pie if served well-"
Jool's sudden shriek made the vender jump and cover what could
pass as his ears. She dived towards a cage that held the object
of her affections.
John Crichton had been the one to gaze at the creature, he would
have commented that it looked rather like a cat, squirrel and
skunk hybrid. It gazed at Jool with bright, shiny and, quite frankly,
adorable eyes. It ruffled it's black fur, yawned and then sneezed.
It was quite cute really.
so adorable!" Jool cooed.
this is a karret. They originate from the jungle moons in the
Kasira system, they are very good pets. Clean and well behaved..."
the vender was wondering how long it would take for her to take
to they eat?"
anything you put in front of them! Plants, meat, food cubes... so
try not to put your finger in front of them, they have a very
gave it a thought, on the one hand, it was so cute, it was clean,
she'd keep it out of the way on Moya, she could feed it with her
share of food cubes and... it would be like having Tricket back
again. On the other hand, D'argo would be angry, Chiana (the little
trelk!) would probably sell it to a fur trader and as for John...
might understand, he was much more sympathetic than the others.
She rather liked him, but still didn't like him that much.
He did cut up her poor cousin's brain. Pilot might not like the
idea of the little cutie running around...
FRELL THEM! They had no right to tell her what to do; she was
not about to take orders from them! If she wanted a pet then she
was frelling going to get a pet! Whether they liked it not! So
you, one hundred credmers."
One hundred? No frelling way! Fifty!"
is an insult!"
don't give a dren, fifty."
realised that this was going to go on for quite some time, so
she tried a little trick she learned when trying to bargain for
a dress back in the markets at home.
five!" The vender was sweating.
Jool squealed with triumph. The street vender gave up, the oldest
trick ever and he'd fallen for it. Oh frell it, he wanted to see
the back of the annoying little dren anyway (and the karret to).
"Fine! Take it!" He cried.
handed over the money and took the cage with the little karret
in it. As walked back through the street she cooed at the thing
"Izzywuzzy woo! Wooes a ickle cutie? You are! Yes you are!"
nearly bumped into here as she head back to the transport pod.
"Hey Jool," he greeted her with a smile. She quickly hid the cage
in her bag "Hello Crichton, are we going?"
I found D'argo, we need to leave a.s.a.p."
I can't wait to leave this piss hole of a planet."
felt a stab in his memory. That's roughly what Aeryn said on their
first visit to a commerce planet... "Yeah," he said, bringing his
brain back to the present "Let's go."
on the transport pod, Jool looked into the bag at the very bedraggled
looking karret. She carefully put a food cube into the cage for
him to eat "I'm never going to let anything bad happen to you,
mommy's going to protect you."
talking to?" Chiana asked.
looked up in alarm "None of your frelling business!" She cried
in shock and covered her bag quickly. Chiana's face took on an
expression of false shock "Sor-ry! Who put a bug up your eema?"
can't you save it till we get home?" John cried to the back.
and Chiana scowled at each other and looked away out of the window.
on board Moya, Jool was letting Tricket the second settle in.
She put his cage down in her quarters and opened the door, "Come
on ickle baby, this is your new home," she gurgled encouragingly.
It poked it's head half way out, looked around and tucked it back
in again. Jool smiled, "Come on, I won't hurt you..." She said and
sighed. She needed... encouragement. She picked up more food cubes
from her bag and laid them out in a trail towards her arms, she
waited. The karret poked its head out of the cage and saw the
food cubes. It leapt out to follow the trail, swallowing each
food cube one by one. Jool leapt forward and scooped it up, it
squirmed a bit, but then calmed down when it realised that if
it stayed longer it might get some more food. She cuddled it tightly
and cooed, "Aren't you just the sweetest little thing?"
the hezmana did that thing come from?"
turned at the voice; D'argo was standing in the doorway, arms
folded. Jool was lost for words for a moment, but she bunched
up her face defiantly "This is a karret, his name is Tricket the
Second and he's mine."
is leaving!" D'argo marched towards Jool "Believe me, we DON'T
want that thing on here because they cause trouble!"
shielded Tricket away from him "What possible trouble could he
cause? Look!" She held up Tricket to his face, the Luxen glared
at it "I'll it's sweet but-" He then had to duck as it hissed
and swung a claw at his face. Jool tugged him away from D'argo's
face and hugged him close "You upset him," she snarled accusingly.
She stroked Tricket lovingly whilst D'argo glared at it. "Jool?"
He said sweetly.
you don't get rid of it, then I'll jettison it!" He cried making
a leap for it. Jool let out an eardrum-bursting scream at the
top of her lungs and D'argo was forced to cover his ears.
ran down the corridor "You are not laying a finger on him! You'll
have to come through me first!" She cried as she ran. She ran
into Command and saw John staring out of the viewer. "HELP! He's
trying to kill my karret!" She squealed.
Just when John thought he was hearing things he saw Jool run towards
him with the little fur-ball in her hands. D'argo followed her
angrily into Command "That thing is not staying!" He
cried, "John, back me up, we can't let that thing stay here!
Remember the vorc?"
looked at the creature curled up in Jool's arms and sighed. "God,
not again," he muttered. Out loud he said "Look, Jool, I know
that thing is cute, adorable and fluffy, but believe me, the last
thing we need is sweet little alien critters."
won't hurt a living soul!" Jool wailed.
the moment, but we don't know what that thing could do. It could
eat us all alive, multiply, spew acid crap for all we know!" He
leaned back on the control panel "Next commerce planet we get
to, we leave it there-"
stop being so childish-" D'argo began.
of you have been nice to me! None of you like me! Tricket is the
only thing that has shown a little bit of kindness towards me!
You are not getting rid of him!" She screamed.
hung his head, he understood what Jool meant and he remembered
when his Dad wouldn't let his dog come with him to summer camp
when he was ten. God, he was so afraid of being by himself with
no one else who knew him that he desperately wanted at least his
dog with him. Of course, this was different; he knew his dog wouldn't
turn into a parasitic alien. "Sorry Jool that thing's got to go."
carried Jool as kindly as they could back to her quarters and
prised the karret out her hands. Trying desperately to ignore
the screeches from Jool they placed her in her quarters and shut
the door. "You frelling bastards!" She screamed, "How
dare you! You are not my dad! You have no right to do this!"
They walked off with the karret struggling in its cage.
and Crichton headed towards the docking bays "I say we just throw
it out," snarled D'argo "We'd be better off, who knows what it
could do if left alone?" John sighed "Yeah, I know, but we have
to be sympathetic, you have to admit, we haven't been nice to
Jool lately," he said.
what harm can it do at the moment? It's in a cage and it doesn't
look as if it will get out."
don't know that John."
but it is kinda cute."
a vicious little dren."
looked at the thing in the cage, "Hey lil'guy-" it swiped at him
with a needle filled paw and caught him on the nose "OW!" cried
John, and swore as only an earthman could.
you," remarked D'argo.
glared at him, holding his bleeding nose "Very funny," he growled
"We still ain't gonna jettison it."
sat in her room sobbing, she was angry, really angry. She tapped
her com "Pilot?" She said.
Jool?" came the reply.
will we get to the next commerce planet?"
the next quarter arn, I already know that they are going to put
your pet there."
can't just abandon him! It's cruel!"
sorry Jool, but they are right. We have to leave it, for Moya
and all of your safety."
he's... mine..." Jool sobbed again.
am so sorry."
quarter of an arn later the smoky, busy air of the commerce planet
was in their lungs. They stood in an alley, Jool held the cage
with Tricket in it and John put his hand on her shoulder "Right
Jool, I'm sorry to do this to you, but the carrot has got
to go," Crichton said firmly, he was starting to feel like his
dad "We can't risk everyone else on Moya."
nodded mournfully and opened the door to the cage, "Out you go,"
she said quietly. The creature leapt out without too much fight
and hopped away. Jool turned away and sobbed into John's shoulder,
he hugged her tight "I'm sure he'll find somewhere nice to live,"
he whispered reassuringly, even though he had a feeling that five
minutes later it will probably get hit with by what ever passed
for a car around here. Carrot road kill. "Come on, we'd better
get back." They turned to walk away.
John didn't notice was Jool opening the cage door, inside was
a pile of food cubes. She felt the slight increase of weight and
the cage jolted.
on the transport pod she held the cage tightly to her and didn't
say a word on the way back. If any one tried to say anything to
her, John would signal to leave her be. Chiana however was never
always to take orders. "I'm sorry you had to get rid of the little
fur ball," she said.
scowled "No you're not."
grinned, "Nope, you're right!"
be a bit more sympathetic will you?" John called back from the
controls. D'argo fumed "Personally, I'm glad we got rid of it."
but now that we did, we got to be a little nicer to her."
as long as I never see it again."
you complaining about? The little bastard got me on the nose,
it didn't give you a scratch."
don't like cute little furry creatures. They mean trouble."
sighed "Good thing you never saw Bambi," he muttered.
they docked and got out Jool turned to the others "Can I go to
my quarters? I want to be alone for a while."
It's not as if you lost anyone important," spat Chiana disgustedly.
Jool, if you need anything just bleep," said Crichton, giving
Chiana a look.
almost felt guilty about betraying his trust, but not really that
guilty. She waited until the doors to her quarters were shut,
took off her com and hid it in her bag, which was then stuffed
under her bed. She sat down on her bed, put the cage on her lap
and opened the door. Tricket hopped onto her lap and looked up
at her with the biggest pair of eyes she had ever seen "Told you,"
Jool gurgled "Mommy's never ever gonna let anything
bad happen to you!"
her quarters, Jool bumped Tricket on her knee, singing an Interon
lullaby and smiling happily. "Who's my little baby? You are!
You are!" She cooed, tickling it under the chin.
we dump that thing?"
turned in horror; Chiana was standing in the door arms folded
and a very smug expression on her face. "Well well! Looks
like the little dren didn't leave after all, oh dear! I'll have
to tell the others-"
Squealed Jool "Please don't! They'll throw him into space!"
it worth my while."
I have a little... encouragement, I might keep quiet."
glared angrily "I will not be blackmailed by a little slut
like you!" She held Tricket close.
smiled and her finger lazily danced towards her com "Oh John,
there's something you might like to know-" She started. Jool
lunged at her and knocked her to the floor "Don't you dare!"
She hissed pinning her there.
going on up there?" Came the reply over the com.
smiled meaningfully "Oh nothing John, Jool was just about
to go and fetch me a drink" she said slyly "and do my
chores as well, since she is so nice."
glared and let Chiana up "You are so dead!" She
muttered, walking off to do as she was asked. Chiana laid back
in Jool's quarters and laughed "Chi? What the hell is-"
John asked over the com again.
I said, nothing."
to herself angrily, Jool stamped to the slues chamber to do Chiana's
washing, she bumped into John on the way "Hey Jool, what's
up? You look upset," he greeted.
off John, I'm busy," she spat.
walked away to his quarters, she'd probably still upset from Tricket,
best thing is to let her deal with it. He opened the door, looked
around to check no one was looking, went in and sat down on the
bed. No one's around, he thought, good. He reached under the bed
and got out the perfume bottle. He stared at it for a long time,
the bottle made pretty patterns in the light as he turned it over
and over in his hands. This is sad, he thought, really sad. I
can't do this to myself, I'll go bonkers over all this.
one little sniff's not going to do any harm. Just jog my memory.
carefully unstoppered the bottle and very, very carefully
let a drop onto his hand. He rubbed it in and took a deep breath
of the scent. God, it was just like having her back. He closed
his eyes and let the memories wash over him quietly. At least
she's alive now. Okay she was with someone else, but at least
it was with him... sort of... besides, they might not even be
together! They might just be friends... and Rygel might give away
all his possessions to needy children. They are probably having
sex as he thought this! They are probably having a great time
together! Hell, she's probably forgotten all about me!
sat up, just one more sniff. Jog my memory a bit more... he carefully
opened the bottle again and edged it towards his palm and the
whole ship rocked violently. The room shook and John dropped the
bottle and its contents. The scented oil splashed all over his
hands in a sticky mess, the smell was no longer arousing so much
as pungent. "Oh damn!" He cursed "What the hell
call came over his com "Commander! There is something wrong
with Moya!" Pilot's worried tone was now even more panicked
"I don't what it is, but she's convulsing! Her air vents
are starting to block up!"
this is bad.
my way Pilot!"
John turned to run out the door, he saw something, wasn't sure
what, dart rapidly through the air duct in the corner of his room
"What the-?" He thought he imagined it at first, he
crouched down to look in the duct and saw nothing.
stop doing this right now!
what?" The every annoying neural clone appeared in view,
sitting on John's bed. John turned angrily "You're frelling
with my mind!"
am doing nothing, I think there might be something in there,"
the clone said calmly.
glared "Might be the reason Moya's acting strange."
done, there I was thinking you were completely brain-dead! There
is light at the end of the tunnel!" The clone proclaimed
before had John been so tempted to shot himself in the head, just
to get rid of Harvey. "Piss off Harvey," John spat and
strode quickly to Pilot's den.
had felt the rumble of the ship and the sluice chamber's air supply
was becoming thin. Running out and sealing the chamber she released
Tricket was still with Chiana in her quarters "Tricket!"
She cried out.
dashed maniacally to her quarters and saw Chiana. But looking
around, she couldn't see Tricket anywhere. In a flash of anger
and panic she advanced on Chiana with a look of fury in her eyes
"Where the frell is Tricket?!" She cried grabbing the
Nebari by the front of her shirt "Where is he?!"
surprised by Jool's strength, glared "I don't know! He was
here a microt ago-"
were supposed to watch him!"
didn't say that!"
gone! He's probably lost, scared and alone, especially when the
ship's acting fahrbot!"
stared in disbelief, how could this girl have her priorities so
screwed up?! "Princess," she said calmly, brushing Jool
off and then launching into hysterics of her own "You're
the one who's fahrbot! Who give's a trunkas-eema about that little
furball? Worry about us!"
up! I'm going to see Pilot, you can stay here and look for the
little dren, but I'm going to see what's wrong with Moya!"
strode off, leaving Jool alone in her quarters. She screwed up
her face, that little trelk! How could she be so mean to Tricket?
What had he ever done to her? Right! She was going to look for
him, frell Chiana! Frell them all!
found a torch in a pile in her room and stalked off through the
ship looking for Tricket.
ran. Jool could die on some crazy mission to find her precious
pet, but she wanted to live!
collided with John on the way "Whoops!" He cried.
John, but there's-"
I know, Moya's gone funky on us, where's Jool?"
Chiana stopped, as much as she hated Jool, if they found out that
she had blackmailed Jool about Tricket, there would be trouble
"Gone somewhere, I don't know where."
Pilot's called her, she's probably on her way. We best'd be going
nodded and caught sight of John's hands, they were covered with
a strange, sticky substance "Looked as if you having fun,"
She said coyly "thinking of someone special?"
glared "Very funny," he said, wiping his hands on his
shirt "let's get going."
arrived in Pilot's chamber; D'argo and several DRDs were there.
The Luxan looked up "You two see what's happening to Moya?"
she's having some sort of attack," said John "the whole
place rocked like a Iron Maiden concert."
looked worried, but then he always did, "I am not sure what
is happening to her," he said "she has convulsions at
irregular rates and her air ducts have sealed up on the lower
tiers and the pressure there is building up to dangerous levels.
D'argo reported that she is secreting some sort of green slimy
substance from the walls of his quarters."
nearly slipped over in it," agreed D'argo "it virtually
covered the whole floor."
groaned "Sounds bad."
have no idea what's causing it."
believe it's an allergic reaction," supplied Pilot "the
symptoms match with one."
what's Moya allergic to?" Asked Chiana.
looked at his panels "Several things, they are listed in
the forbidden cargoes."
powder, zemhian flower spore, terleum serum..." Everyone had
a feeling that he could go on for a long time.
mind whirred rapidly; did he bring anything on board? What about
the perfume? Did that have anything in it? It couldn't do, Zhaan
had perfume like it in her apothecary and it didn't effect Moya
then. What was going on? What was causing it?
from somewhere in the back of his mind, a little thought Harvey
said quietly "What about the thing you saw in the air duct?"
guys," he said aloud "what about live cargo? Is Moya
allergic to any live cargo?"
cargo?" asked Pilot.
I saw something in the ducts-"
said D'argo "you could be-"
wasn't wrong last time was I? I swear on my dad's life I saw something
in the ducts!"
they might be something in there, but what?"
shrugged "I don't know! We didn't bring any live animals...
on ... board..." he trailed away.
growled "Oh yes we did!"
I saw her get rid of it! I saw her drop it off!"
looked at each other; then again, Jool was determined and stubborn.
She didn't give up easily.
turned to Pilot "Tell me, is Moya allergic to carrots?"
said Pilot consulting his panels "Moya is allergic to them,
quite strongly in fact."
took a deep breath, tapped his com and spoke in the sing song
tones of those about to administer a lecture "Oh Jo-ol? Could
you come up here please? Now!"
panicked as she ran to Pilot's den, how the frell did they find
out? Chiana must've talked! That little slut! She must have told
them about Tricket! Jool got to the den and fell under the heavy,
angry and smug gazes of the group. She lowered her head and walked
nervously towards them. She looked up and the gazes remained as
she spoke "Look, I'm sorry-" She began.
SORRY?!" Growled D'argo, advancing on the unfortunate Interon
"That won't help the fact that there is a creature running
around in the air ducts that is causing Moya to have an allergic
might not be Tricket..." squeaked Jool.
else could it be?!"
Chiana knew about it! She tried to blackmail me!" Jool pointed
to her accusingly.
all turned to look at Chiana who cowered "Well... er..."
the love of FRELL!" D'argo roared "You girls will kill
me one day!"
whoa! Time out grizzly!" John cried out, grabbing D'argo's
arm "This isn't going to help either! Let's just clam down
then, the ship rocked violently again, knocking Jool into D'argo,
Chiana in Pilot's panels and John over the edge of the stand.
When everyone had got their bearings, they realised John was gone.
"John?" D'argo called.
was a gasp and a groan from below D'argo's feet "Down here!"
looked down into the chasm below Pilot's den, John was holding
on for dear life and glaring up at D'argo "A little help
here?!" He grunted.
Luxan held out a hand to John and tugged him up with surprising
ease. The nearly traumatised Crichton staggered on the platform
and glared at the company.
alright John?" D'argo asked.
it! I have had it! ," Growled John "When I find
that little bastard I am so going to jettison it's furry
little ass into SPACE! All those in favour say aye!"
wait! You can't-" Jool cried out to the retreating backs.
patted Jool on the shoulders "Face it princess," she
said with a smirk "You're out voted."
hunt began. John and D'argo, armed with a pulse rifle and Qualta
Blade hunted the top tiers and Chiana and Jool went to the lowest
tiers that weren't sealed up.
hurried ahead of Chiana, making clicking noises with her tongue
and calling Tricket's name "Come here baby! Mommy's here!
Come on out for me please!" She cried desperately.
rolled her eyes "Will you give it a rest!"
sneered "If you hadn't brought that thing on board we wouldn't
be in this mess!"
if you'd been a bit nicer to me then I wouldn't have brought him
hard to be nice to annoying, screeching, whining little cry-baby!"
irritating, nasty, barbaric little TRELK!"
stopped, glared at each other and took a deep breath "I think
it is best," said Chiana calmly "if we split up."
agree," said Jool "You go that way and I'll go this
stormed off in opposite directions, muttering insults and the
think it's still in the air ducts," said John, cocking the
rifle "probably hungry by now, how about if we set a trap?"
idea, what about food cubes?" D'argo replied, brandishing
the Qualta rifle "I saw Jool feeding them to it-"
The curse was followed by several blasts from the pulse rifle
"I saw something in that duct!"
knelt down and looked into the duct "It's gone!"
well at least we know where it is," he tapped his com "Jool?
Pip? You there?"
was kneeling down by a duct; firing shots into it and didn't hear
the call over the com. She stood up as the call came again "Chi?
I think I saw it in this duct and I'm just trying to-"
I just saw it in this duct!"
must be imagining things."
don't think so..."
following this trail to a big duct, I can crawl in that way and
get a better shot."
the ducts are sealing up, you don't want to become the Uncharted
Territories' first Nebari pancake."
know," said Chiana, wondering briefly what a pancake was.
reached the big duct way, pulled aside the grating, brandished
her pulse rifle and cried out "Alright you little son-of-a-trelk!
I've got-" She stopped when she saw what was in the duct.
karret was there alright, but it was lying on it's side and all
around it were a least ten little pink shapes all digging their
faces into the karret's side. At first, Chiana thought they were
suckling, but when the pink shapes turned to look at her she stared
were eating it!
pink shapes focused, they looked like the karret except they were
small and hair-less. They bared several pairs of shape teeth,
dripping with blood and some of them were fighting over pieces
of the karret. The one nearest to Chiana hissed at her.
herself together, she pointed the rifle towards the litter and
fired several shots before they all scattered down the duct way.
Chiana looked down the dark duct; she missed them all, dren!
Moya heaved violently and Chiana rolled out of the duct before
the sides started to swell and close tightly into a little passageway.
She panted for breath and tried to take in what she saw.
highness is not going to like this!" She breathed.
what a mess," Crichton said flicking his touch around the
swelled vent "it's been half eaten!"
Please!" Jool sobbed "Those barbaric little... little..
THINGS ate Tricket! It's disgusting!"
am sorry Jool," said Pilot over the coms "I did not
realize that these creatures ate the mother of the litter after
didn't even know she was a SHE!" Wailed Jool "Why poor
is apparently what these things do, when the female karret reaches
one cycle it self-pregnates. The litter are born carnivores, they
become omnivores as they reach two weekans. The litter is born
and the karret dies from exhaustion, so the young's only source
of food is the mother's carcass-"
I can't take this any more!" Jool cried "It's horrible!"
that's nature princess," Chiana said with not the slightest
touch of sympathy. Jool scowled angrily.
Crichton crawled out of the vent "why didn't you tell us
am sorry, I didn't know commander, I have only just scanned my
data files for this species' profile. Also, it is not the adult
karret that causes the reactions in Leviathans but the young.
They secret a special oil through the skin that causes the reactions,"
Pilot sighed apologetically "Jool was right, it wasn't Tricket
that was causing the reactions, it was her litter."
things have to be found, Moya's reactions are getting worse and
they are spreading through out the ship. If they are not stopped
are all so totally screwed," interrupted John "let's
set off again, armed with pulse rifles and determined to find
them. John and D'argo headed along the air ducts on the lower
tiers and Jool and Chiana investigated the higher tiers.
pointed his gun around corners and D'argo inspected the vents
"She's defiantly getting worse," D'argo said "look
at these vents, you can't even fit a finger through there!"
was Jool thinking?"
shook his head "I have no idea, but let's find them before
ARRRGH!" He jumped up and down screaming and cursing violently
"there's one on my frelling FOOT! D'argo!"
karret young had sneaked up on John and had bitten into his foot,
it's sharp teeth penetrating his boot and it wasn't going to let
go in a hurry. "DON'T JUST STAND THERE! SHOOT IT!"
aimed carefully, but it was hard with John leaping around and
trying to shake it off. "Stand still! I can't hit it if you
don't stand still!"
mother of GOD! GET IT OFF!"
shot at it and missed, hitting an opposite wall. The karret dropped
off John's foot, lunged at D'argo and landed on his chest, hissing
and spitting. D'argo cried in alarm, pulled it off and threw it
against the opposite wall. It flew like a hissing Frisbee and
hit the wall hard, but got up quickly before the two astonished
men could take a shot.
recovered their senses and shot at it desperately, but missed
and it dived away down the corridor.
turned to his human friend "You alright?"
glared "Just peachy," he spat, his voice dripping with
sarcasm "I had a nasty little critter bit into my foot, but
apart from that-"
have to let Jool take a look at you," the Luxan said, ignoring
the sarcastic tone "who knows what diseases that thing could
for making me feel so much better D."
tapped his com "Chiana? You there?"
what's wrong?" She replied.
just been bitten by one of these things so careful when you see
one, they seem to have quite a nasty bite-"
problem D'argo, I'll keep a look out."
Jool to come up to the lab to treat John."
we'll keep looking and I'll send her up in a while."
was anxious "Do we really have to shot them? I mean couldn't
we keep them in cages or something? Take them to a commerce planet
or something and make sure they go to a loving home?"
was on the verge of pulling out her tonsils just to have something
to hit Jool with. "Listen Jool, those things are dangerous!
They are killing Moya, trying to eat us and when all of Moya's
air ducts close up we are going to run out of air and then we
will all DIE! So stop whining!" She stalked on, occasionally
looking in ducts.
had had enough "Look Chiana, I don't know who the hell
you think you are, but you could at least stop acting like
you know it all! You brought the last dangerous creature on board!"
stopped and her voice turned to ice "How did you find out
rolled her eyes "No.."
carried on in angry silence for a while, until suddenly Chiana
stopped and pointed her gun around the corridors. Jool jumped
"What? What?" She asked hurriedly.
I thought I heard something."
frelling do that to me!"
me like that!"
don't talk to me like that!"
talk how I like!"
acting like you know it all!"
when you just-"
won't you ever just-"
YOUR WAKKET HOLE!" They screamed, facing each other and hissing.
there was a scratching noise coming from a small storage room.
They turned, argument forgotten and their pulse rifles trained
on the door. "What was that?" Squeaked Jool, paralyzed
carefully tapped the door to the storage room with her rifle,
it opened easily so she cautiously walked in.
room was pitch black and Chiana couldn't see a thing. She edged
forward and turned to Jool who was standing in the door way "You
got a light princess?" She asked.
one here," Jool replied and flicked a switch by the door.
The room filled with light that was overwhelming for a moment.
Jool jumped "Well at least we can see now-" She stopped
and stared in horror. Chiana turned to look and saw it.
karret young were fighting over something, it was a leg of the
shook violently, tears sprung to her eyes, she threw her head
back and screamed at the top of her lungs. Chiana covered her
ears and bellowed "STOP THAT!"
she heard tiny noises, like little explosions, and tiny splats.
When the noise died away, she opened her eyes and looked down.
The two karret young were dead, they lay head-less around the
leg that they were fighting over. Chiana smiled "Hey Jool,
looks like your talent as a screaming cry baby actually helped."
was still shaking "Those little..." she muttered.
Jool, let's go find the others."
in the lab Jool gave John an injection to prevent any diseases
from the bite spreading and bandaged the foot. "I hate karrets,"
John muttered "I like them when they are older and fluffier,
rather when they are young and they try to eat your foot!"
scream?" D'argo was saying "That's what killed them?"
their heads exploded, I guess the pitch was too much for them,"
Chiana said with a laugh.
now we know what can kill them easily, shooting them is going
to take too long, so if we get something that can get them all
at once it will solve the problem faster."
is, they'll have spread out all over the ship by now," D'argo
pointed out "Maybe if we broadcast Jool's scream over the
will leave the bodies in the ducts and all over Moya, their fluids
will probably kill her," Pilot said over the com.
need to get them into one place," John said.
about your idea for a trap earlier?" D'argo remarked "we
can set down some food and get Jool to scream and kill them all."
are we going to attract them all?" asked Chiana "I mean,
how do we know that we haven't got thousands of them all over
checked the databanks," interjected Pilot "it is physically
impossible for a female karret to give birth to more than ten
in a litter."
got two," said D'argo thoughtfully "that's only eight
of them left."
might be trapped in the swollen vents," said Jool coldly,
still in a mild state of shock, "we need to get them out
first won't we?"
DRDs are working on a antidote to cease the swelling, if we get
most of the karrets away from the ship, then she would be able
to flush her ducts and expel the rest of them into space,"
scream kill them first, flush the others later? We are making
some progress!" Cried John in delight "Pilot, you mix
up the antidote and we'll get us a karret trap together-"
need somewhere to amplify the smell of the food, so they'll all
be able to sniff and come running," said Chiana.
where all of Moya's ducts are connected to," agreed D'argo
"and where we'll be able to get them all in one place."
all knew the perfect spot.
was silence from the com for a while and then "Alright, use
the den, but be careful when bringing those things in here! It
is the center of Moya's functions!" Cried Pilot.
be careful," said John reassuringly, he stood up "Pilot-
ow! Goddamnit - We'll go round the ducts with some meat to flush
them out towards the den, Jool, you go to the den and wait for
us there and keep those DRDs cooking up some remedy."
grinned, picked up a pulse rifle and limped towards the door "Alright
y'all," he drawled, his accent at the forefront of his speech
"let's go bag us some CARROTS!"
found some meat in the food storage and hurried along the ducts
around Pilot's den "Here little bastards.. come here.."
John coaxed "I got a score to settle..."
got one on the scent!" Called Chiana from two tiers below
him over the com "I'm heading to Pilot's den!"
here John!" Jool was heaving the hunks of meat around the
increasingly worried Pilot.
that meat spread around the den?"
there is about eight or so around the meat you scream like a banshee
and do it quickly!"
try, DO IT! D'argo? Everything okay there?"
got one on the scent as well John, we'll be there in a microt!"
tapped the com off and walked quickly down the corridor, for some
reason, he was actually enjoying himself. He wasn't sure why.
look out if I were you," Harvey said, some where in the back
of his mind.
turned to see a karret hissing at him. He grinned "Hey there
little buddy," he smirked evilly "want another taste
of genuine human foot?"
creature raced for John's foot again , but John was ready this
time. He lifted his foot and brought it down hard on the thing's
head. There was an satisfying, if rather disgusting, squelch!
Jool?" John wiped his foot on the floor as best he could
"make that seven."
saw them first, they dived in through ducts beside the door to
Pilot's chamber and ran like small, pink, hairless streaks towards
the meat. She shook as she watched them devour it quickly, unable
to move or speak.
she told herself "do it now."
one of them, the biggest, looked up at Pilot. It yelped as it's
gazed turned from that of curiosity to one of hunger.
Cried Pilot in alarm "I think it's going to-"
leapt. It almost flew towards the unfortunate Pilot and bit into
his great dome like head. Pilot cried out in pain as even more
of the creatures leapt towards him, jaws dripping.
yelped Jool. She ran towards him "Get off of him you frelling
What the hezmana's going on?"
is for TRICKET!" Jool cried, she stopped in front of Pilot,
who was fighting off the karrets left and right, and screamed
and screamed, her lungs near busting.
over the ship, the crew ducked and covered their ears at the sound.
It echoed through the com channels like a roar and in their skulls
like a cavern. It was Chiana who managed to come to her senses
I THINK THEY'RE DEAD NOW!" Shouted John above the din.
scream died away, Jool took heaving breaths and looked at the
scene around Pilot's panels. There were at least six or seven
dead, headless karrets lying around the shaking, traumatized Pilot.
exhausted, rolled her eyes towards the ceiling and spiraled to
awoke with something blessedly cold pressing against her forehead,
she opened her eyes and saw John's kindly blue eyes staring back.
"You okay Jool?"
uh..." she sat up "think so, what happened?"
passed out, you nearly broke our eardrums with that scream!"
I get them?"
D'argo and the DRDs are cleaning up the mess in the den. You missed
the big flush by the way."
Moya got her ducts back to normal size, she could flush them out
and now the lower tiers are opening up again," that was Chiana's
voice "the whole place shook!"
rubbed her eyes and waited for her head to stop swimming "So,
it's all over then?"
much," said John.
looked uncomfortable for a moment, she hugged her knees and turned
her head away from John "I'm sorry, I shouldn't have brought
Tricket on board, it's all my fault."
got that right ."
Said Crichton meaningfully "be nice."
should I? She nearly got us all killed!"
really sorry.." Jool began to sob "I just wanted...
someone to be nice to me..."
Don't turn on the water works princess, it ain't going to work!"
Chiana growled angrily.
Be nice, okay Jool brought that thing on board, but you did it
to remember? She's sorry, that's good enough."
attacked Pilot!" Sobbed Jool.
recovering," soothed John patting the Interon's hand "it's
okay, everything's alright."
please.." muttered Chiana, walking angrily out of the room.
they were alone, Jool sniffed deeply and Crichton patted her on
the shoulder "We managed to... er... scrape, I mean gather
together Ticket's remains-"
Tricket's remains and I'd thought you'd like a burial for
looked up through tear blurred eyes at him, "That would be
so nice," she hiccupped "I can say goodbye to her properly."
got up, staggered a bit and walked towards the door. She remembered
something and turned "John?" she said "thank you,
at least someone on board is being nice to me.
okay, I'm glad I could help."
she was sure she was far away enough, she stopped and leaned against
let out a huge sigh and smiled.
was going to be fine. Really.
is appreciated. Be sure to visit Rozi's