Friday, February 19, 2010

Dawn of the Dragonsworn-Part 3

"Welcome to the Dominion of the Dragonsworn, Agent Delgana."

Homsar looked upon this near-human woman, this twig of an almost-girl, as an adult looks upon a child pretending to be an adult.

"What brings you to our world?" she said, "Such urgency and curtness surely means that your task is severe in its importance."

Homsar still thought the slim, lithe thing before him to be not as she appeared, but he as yet could get past her thought shield- or those of her giant lizardman servants.

"I come to collect the remnants of the Republic's recent war. We sent a unit here to establish a hospital, which came under enemy attack, and was later destroyed. Those stationed here were lost, presumed dead, but neither confirmed nor denied. I am here to do just that; I will collect remains, survivors and descendants and return them to the Republic where they belong. Assistance is appreciated, which is why I am here. My time, however, is highly valuable; I have none to waste on useless status displays."

The Lady of Holy Fire scowled. She turned about abruptly, harrumphed, and walked back inside. As her armed servants turned to follow she motioned Homsar to follow, and he did. Behind him the doors closed. He turned his attention briefly to what his armor's display showed to him, which was that this was a mostly-manufactured system of caverns and tunnels based upon an existing natural network. Within it he sensed the minds of a legion of lizard-like beings; from the prosaic thoughts he picked up, these seemed to be the underclass--peons, serfs, slaves, covey labor--of this alien species. The warriors seemed to be of a superior breed, commensurate with superior consideration of their value as shown by the thought shields they sport concealed in their garb- a shield also concealed in the Lady's scanty garb.

"We Dragonsworn remember your war, Agent Delgana." she said, "We were not impressed, which is why we kept our distance and remained aloof from it until this incident you come to close out came to our world."

"Indeed." the veteran said, not appearing to pay attention. His mind now perceived another mind out there, another of these leaders apparently, briefly before his mind also disappeared behind a screen.

"You have a mate?" he said, his eyes looking elsewhere.

"My husband, the Lord of the Blessed Land as our people call him in your tongue, is in conference with several of our people's masters. He shall receive you presently."

"And what, madam, is a 'Dragonsworn'?" he continued, keeping his disinterested demeanor going.

"These beings are the spawn of a great and ancient progenitor, whom my husband and I met in our adventures and befriended after quite some time together. 'Dragon', in your tongue, is the most apt term for our patron and friend's species. We are the allies, friends, students- and, yes, you might say adopted children- of this being. We rules over its lesser progeny in its name, having no homeland of our own anymore."

"Fascinating." Homsar said, maintaining his mood, "Whence did you two come from?"

"A world that, as our anatomy suggests, is very much like your homeworld. However, that was a long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. It is gone, those lives forsaken, and we've come since to become very happy here in our new home, taking up roles of our own making."

The group continued on a little ways longer, until they arrived in what Homsar took to be the living quarters of his hostess and her husband. Therein he noted that the couple had at least one child, likely on the cusp of maturity, and then he spotted a most intriguing detail: a picture of a Terran woman.

Now affirmed in his suspicion, Homsar silently settled on a course of action- and it began with an act most ironic for those unable to pierce his own inherent screens: he shut down his armor and stepped out of it.

"I accept your hospitality." he said, and smiled.

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