The Absurdity of it All (Birdy x Nivvy)

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  1. It had been a long time since Aramdalix had felt like such a fool. Earlier that day, he would have sworn that he was at the height of perfection. He had escaped the National Space Station after the successful assassination of the Stasdon Prime Minister without anyone any the wiser about his presence. The resulting chaos from the murder would plunge the planet into chaos, leaving his assets free to move in and claim the planet as a trading post for Aram's growing intergalactic smuggling chain.

    But somewhere between the space station and his own base of operation his plan had fallen apart. The reason was simple; the ship he had stolen was out of warp-power. He had just enough left to give himself one final burst. It wasn't going to be enough to get him to any civilized planet, and he would run out of supplies long before one of his own could come find him. He wanted to scream, claw at his own face until his skin peeled away and bared his stupidity to the universe, but he retained his icy facade through pure force of will. One of his six hands wiped along his brow, wicking black sweat off of charcoal grey skin.

    Fine. If there were no civilized planets, he would simply have to pick an uncivilized one. As long as it could support him long enough for one of his own to find him, it would be sufficient. Quickly two of his hands beat out a staccato on the tracker, and he sent out a signal, searching for compatible life forms to his own. There was one in range. It would do.

    He sent out the coded signal, informing someone he trusted of his location, before powering up the warp. He drained every last drop of energy into the reactor, knowing if he didn't make it close enough he would be dead, before setting the signal to initiate the burst.

    His ship hurtled into the warp hole, before being shot out on the other side. Instantly, the inside of the craft began to heat up, and Aram realized that he had made another mistake. He had overshot his destination, and arrived within the planet's atmosphere. There was no way he could keep the ship from crashing, assuming it didn't completely burn up in the descent from high space.

    One way or another, it would be his last mistake. But right now there was only time to close his eyes and brace for impact.
  2. The sun was coming up. Her eyelids squeezed closed against the rising wakefulness that threatened to pull her out of her blissful dream land. She pulled a pillow over her head, and curled up against the morning, unwilling to release her sleep just yet.

    She began to fidget. With a frustrated groan, she threw the pillow from her bed, and sat up to pout petulantly at her closet door. There, a poster of a band standing between the cherry glow of lava flows met her. As her dream faded, she swung her bare legs out of bed, and pushed herself to her feet. The floor was cold in October, and her toes curled against the chill.

    She gathered some clothing, and made for the shower. It would wake her up.

    Washed and clothed, she brushed her hair out in the mirror, and there was no avoiding her own reflection. She was blonde, and her skin was lightly tanned from time in the sun. Freckles bridged her nose lightly. It wrinkled, and she frowned. She hated her freckles.

    She had big, blue eyes as well, and a mouth that looked like it was always on the verge of a smile. She'd been called pretty a time or two. The thought brought out her smile in full. Her hair got twined into a thick braid, and she pulled it over her shoulder, just the way she liked it. It was about time for breakfast.

    She grabbed a granola bar and a banana for food on the go, and snatched the keys from the rack near the door.

    "Momma, I'm gonna borrow the truck to go into town."

    Her mother's muffled affirmative came from upstairs.

    "Love you, bye!"

    She was out the door in a flash, with a grin splitting her face. Ever since she'd turned seventeen, her father had let her drive the pickup to and from town for grocery runs, and on the weekends at her leisure. The freedom was intoxicating. She hopped into the vehicle, and turned the key. The engine turned over, rumbling to life merrily. She was quickly on her way.

    Several miles down a dirt road through light forest, she began to hear a faint noise. She dismissed it as a mechanical malfunction of the car at first, but as the noise grew from a hum into a roar, she began to cast about for the source.

    And then she saw it. A line of smoke plummeting from the sky, tumbling towards earth. Her eyes grew wide, and she slammed on the breaks as the meteorite plummeted to earth.

    The crash was tremendous, and she nearly jumped out of her skin, when the thing passed over her truck, to crash deeper into the forest.

    Almost without thinking, she pulled the truck to the shoulder, locked it, and made for the woods. Town be damned, how often did you get the chance to be the first one on the scene of a meteor?
  3. The pain was excruciating. Aram hung on the edge of consciousness, four of his arms completely shattered, one leg ripped open by a piece of shrapnel from the wreck, his chest cavity punctured repeatedly by his ribs. He could feel the fluid slowly seeping into his lungs and dribbling out of his mouth. He had been flung out of his ship when it crashed, the fragile metal designed to withstand the forces of empty space shattering upon collision with the cold, hard earth. He lay in a pool of tar-like blood, slowly seeping from his wounds, and he couldn't open his eyes. But he couldn't let himself fall unconscious, because then he really would be dead. He had to reset his bones, hold the open wounds on his body together so that his blood could go about the work of sealing his skin to prevent further blood loss.

    It was only through sheer force of will that Aram managed to force his eyes open, and as he took a gasping, spluttering breath pain tore through his chest. A muffled scream slipped from between his lips, and his eyes snapped closed. His brain was swimming through muck, desperately trying to surface as the current pulled it down, down, down...

    One of his shattered arms twitched, and the pain once more catapulted him into wakefulness. No. He had survived so much. He had been born on Ruthgan, the planet of fire, where every day was a constant battle for survival. He was the only known person to have succeeded in escaping from Gezarthi, the dimensional prison of the Abonege. He had singlehandedly faced the armies of the Ysemen, and emerged as the victor. People the galaxy wide whispered his name in fear and awe. He was not going to let one small shipwreck kill him!

    He held his breath, forcing one of his two relatively intact arms to move, reach carefully across his chest, and carefully latch onto the wrist of one of his broken arms. With a sudden jerking motion he pulled the arm out straight, causing the bone fragments to fall back into place even as they tore through muscle and flesh. This time, he could not contain the scream, and his feral, unearthly cry of torment echoed through the air.

    One down. Four more to go.
  4. She had begun picking her way carefully through the forest as it thickened, her pace slow over the uneven ground. And then she heard a cry. A scream of anguish that sent chills down her spine. Her pace quickened, and her booted feet moved more quickly over the ground. The scent of burned wood, and churned earth began to fill her nostrils, mingling with the cool crisp of the autumn air, as she came upon the furrowed crater that the meteor had left in it's wake. It was shallower than she'd expected of something it's size.

    She gave the thing a wide berth, as she approached. The wreckage -and it was wreckage, not some space-rock fallen from the sky- looked horribly mangled, and like none of the space ships she'd ever seen on the television, or the internet. Was this some secret military craft? Her fancies began to get away with her, before another unearthly scream pierced the forest. It came from nearby.

    The girl darted into the woods in front of the crash, and what she found nestled in a curtain of crushed shrubbery made her gasp.

    "Ohmygod," She breathed, all at once. She cautiously approached the mangled, many-limbed body. It was an alien. An honest-to-goodness alien.

    "Oh," She began, her eyes taking in his broken figure. "My god." She finished again.

    Cautiously, the girl dropped to all fours, crawling towards the injured creature. "An alien. Is this... Blood?" She touched the thick, sticky black sludge that was spilling out over the ground. "I-I'm going to try and help... You can't understand me. You're an alien."

    She said, the beginnings of hysteria entering her voice. She grimaced, and moved closer still, her hands hovering over one of the alien's legs. A branch had lodged itself in the meat of the limb. She braced the leg with one trembling hand, and bit her lower lip as she encircled the rough bark of the limb with the other. "I'm gonna pull this out, and..." Her eyes flicked to the shattered chest cavity. This alien was dying. She couldn't fix that sort of damage.

    "And put pressure on the wound, so please don't vaporize me, or anything." She whispered. It was like trying to keep water in a strainer by plugging the holes with your fingers.
  5. Aram did not notice the creature creeping up on him until it spoke, and his head turned wildly to the side. Bright gold eyes stared at her, and his moth opened, breathing shallowly. This was it. He had been found by the creatures that ruled this planet, and now he was going to be exterminated. He could feel his blood slowly knitting muscle and bone back together, but there was no way he would be healed in time to fight off this creature.

    It kept speaking, and he let out a faint, huffing laugh as he felt the translator in the back of his head begin to quietly hum. He had encountered unknown languages before this point, and his translator was one of the best available. It would come to understand the creature's speech soon enough. The one thing he did not need was the one thing that did not fail him. Oh, the irony.

    He watched the creature move closer, but was in too much pain to do anything other than stare at it wild-eyed. But, to his surprise, the thing did not move in for the kill. Instead it kneeled next to him, looking at his wounds. What was it doing? Was it enjoying his pain? Did it want to study it? Or was this, perhaps, concern? He almost didn't let himself hope it was. One of its hands (only two. How could it get anything done?) hovered near the thing in its leg, before suddenly yanking it out. He screamed again, desperately trying to muffle the sound behind tightly pressed lips. But now that the thing was out of the wound he could feel his blood beginning to do its work, The creature's small hands pressed against the wound, and although he could not help the small whimper he could feel relief exploding through his body like some kind of exotic drug. The creature wanted to help him.

    Now that his blood did not need to pull the wound together his blood was able to do its work significantly quicker. The sticky substance pulled flesh to flesh, muscle to muscle, filling all the tiny little gaps before congealing on top of his skin, leaving a black line.

    "Burquyt selyht," he said, lifting one intact arm and swirling his finger, beckoning her away from the leg. If she wanted to help, she had to move onto something else. His blood would heal his leg now.
  6. She felt the tar-like blood swirling and pulling beneath her hands, and it made her stomach roil. She didn't have a weak constitution, but she wasn't familiar with this sort of gore. When the alien spoke, she pulled her black-stained hands away in surprise, her big, blue eyes flicking to it's face as it gesticulated with an arm that looked mostly intact.

    Her stomach lurched, and her eyes glanced again to it's ribcage. Or what she thought was it's ribcage, anyway. She hadn't a clue where to begin fixing that, so she moved onto one of it's six limbs that looked to be in worse repair. Her throat tightened, and her mouth went dry as she laid her hands lightly on the limb. She had to set the bones, and splint it. Maybe. That wasn't as easy to do as all the TV shows made it out to be. She gently palpated the flesh of the limb to find the breaks, and began to firmly, but inexpertly re-align the bones.

    "I'm sorry," She whispered, every time she adjusted an injury. Her clothing was getting filthy with blood, and she was quickly getting smeared with the tar-like substance, from wrist to elbow. "You're going to be okay." She tried to sound comforting. Inexplicably, tears leaped to her eyes, and frustration with the whole of the situation began to bubble up.

    She'd made first contact, and now she had to watch an alien die. What kind of crazy dream was this?

    "I'm sorry," She muttered again, as she straightened it's fingers. This was like putting together a puzzle when someone had stolen all of the edge-pieces.
  7. It was almost a relief, to be able to close his eyes and focus on nothing but bearing the pain. It didn't know what the creature was saying, over and over, whether it was supposed to be comforting or not, but it didn't really matter. Every time one of his bones realigned he could feel it being held in place and the break beginning to heal. Once four of its arms were intact it began to probe carefully around its own chest, trying to ignore the bright flashes of pain as the creature continued to fix the other two. He was reserved in his movements, having no desire to strain the bonding blood that held his bones together. Normally he would have waited until his bones had more fully healed, but he didn't have the luxury for that right now. He didn't trust the creature to work on his chest, even if it had done surprisingly well with his arms. It wasn't until he felt a drop of water on his arm that Aram opened his eyes once more. There was water pooling in the creature's eyes, spilling over before running down its face.

    For a moment he stared at it, perplexed, before forcing himself to dismiss the bewildering sight. He had no idea what it meant, and he wouldn't be able to figure it out until he was more fully healed and could begin adapting to this planet. His fingers probed gently, moving the bone piece by piece and letting his blood do the rest of the work. He knew there was already an alarmingly large pool of the stuff outside of his body where it did him no good, but he had to ignore both that information and the growing dizziness in his head if he wanted to survive. But the dizziness was growing worse and worse as the pool of blood outside his body continued to grow. With a sudden cracking noise one of the arms he was using went limp, the blood abandoning its job of holding his bones together and repairing them to flood to his brain and keep him alive.

    Aram screamed as his arm went limp, sending one of the bone fragments punching through his skin. The sudden release of air was finally too much for his already wounded chest, and a rib tore downwards, exposing the inside of his chest underneath a flap of skin. He couldn't see anything other than blackness, but he knew his eyes were open. He was fading, fading.

    And then there was nothing. The only proof that life still coursed through his veins was the steady pumping of blood as it dripped out of his various wounds in time to his heartbeat.
  8. Her breaths were coming in short, ragged gasps, and her hands were trembling as the creature began to attend to it's own wounded chest. She didn't know what to do. She was no doctor. No surgeon. She couldn't carry the alien back to her truck, and then to a hospital. Even if they didn't lock it away in some government laboratory, they'd have only as much information on how to treat it as she did.

    Thinking quickly, she produced a little folding knife from her pocket, and began cutting strips from the bottom of her shirt. Once she had enough, she began tying them over the wounds that were pumping what could only be blood more heavily than the others.

    The sudden cry startled her, and she fumbled the knot that she was tying in the strip of cloth. She let out a frustrated scream of her own, but cut it short, clenching her jaw.

    "Please don't die," She whispered, her vision going blurry.

    It wasn't going to be enough.

    "Please don't die, Mr. Alien."

    She leaned in, and tried to manually replace the torn skin and fractured bone of his chest. The smell surrounding her was... Uniquely unpleasant, and the girl very nearly retched into the bushes when she first delved a hand into the fractured cavity to re-structure the bone there. Everything was slick. Sticky.

    She was intimately aware that she wasn't qualified for this work, and the incredible frustration of it all burned in her chest. "Please wake up. Please wake up, I can't do it," She said, even as she tried smoothing the skin over the hole.
  9. Aram could hear his own heartbeat. It was a uniquely comforting sound, a noise that had unconsciously accompanied him through every moment of his life which he never took the time to notice. But he could hear it now. The sound was slow, so slow, unnaturally slow, and getting slower. Thump... ... Thump... .... ... Thump... ... ... ... Thump... ... ... ... ...

    But with every beat of his heart, his blood coursed through his body. It did not know that the body as a whole was dying, that it was nearly time to give up. It did its job as studiously as ever, desperately trying to heal the wounds of its body. As there was less and less of the blood it abandoned the extremities of the body, causing Aram's fingers and toes to pale to a color that was nearly white. The color bled away from his wrists and ankles, along his arms and legs. It would hurt like hell when the blood finally returned to the dying cells. But at least he would be alive to feel the pain.

    She didn't know it, but she had done enough, just enough that Aram's blood could restore the necessary shape to his chest. His breath began to come normally once more, even if it was light, careful, instinctively trying to protect the ribs that were held together with nothing but a thin, sticky coating of blood. Gradually his muscles and bones began to release more blood into his system, and the color crept back down his arms and legs. When it finally reached the tip of his fingers Aram's eyes shot open.

    He wanted to gasp, to bring air to his lungs and remind himself that he was alive, but he couldn't break the instinctual shallow breathing. Those arms that had been repaired by the creature were held together by blood, only the one arm that the bone had torn through still needed attention. Aram felt like he had been fed through a warp engine, but he was alive. Alive because this strange creature had found him, and helped this thing it did not know or understand.

    The weight of the life debt came to settle heavily on his heart, but he accepted its burden willingly. He was still alive because that debt was in place, and he had payed off such debts before. He would simply have to pay it off again.

    In that moment he thought carefully, trying to find a way to thank the creature. Hundreds of rituals for the expression of gratitude flitted through his mind, from thousands of cultures, and he had no idea which one to pick. The last thing he wanted to do was offend the being that had just saved his life. Finally, one of the hands that had been least injured in the crash reached up towards its face, gently wiping away a drop of his own blood that had stained the creature's pale skin dark. It left a streak, and Aram closed his eyes in embarrassment. It would have to do. For now he needed to heal.
  10. It was fading. It was dying. It's breaths were shallow. It's eyes were closed.

    Trembling hands withdrew from the creature's chest, and rested themselves on her knees, staining her jeans further then they'd been from kneeling in the sticky black blood.

    She stared silently at the creature, her eyes glossed over. She didn't know how much time had passed, but she felt numb. And then it's eyes popped open again.

    For an insane moment, terror flashed across her mind. Zombie-Alien! It reached up to her face, and- Wiped away a dab of tar-like blood, before it subsided once again.

    Feeling foolish, the girl wiped her hands on her tattered shirt to clean them the best she could. She felt somehow responsible for the extraterrestrial visitor, and guilty that she couldn't better provide for it.

    When she thought that it slept, she began casting about the area. Sunlight dappled the ground, and the wreckage called her curiosity. But she wasn't going to be the only one to have seen the crash. Quickly, she began to arrange the shrubbery that the alien had landed in to better disguise it's body from casual inspection. She was still filthy with it's blood, and dressed in tatters besides.

    She began to poke around the wreckage curiously. The external plating was still too hot to touch, but it wasn't radiant enough to burn from as far away as she stood to examine it.

    __________________________________________-Feel free to timeskip if you want to-_______________________________________________
  11. Aram didn't know how long he lay there, back pressed against the hard earth of this strange planet, but by the time he opened his eyes the small yellow sun around which the planet orbited had dropped lower in the sky. Unable to gain any true sense of the passage of time from this, Aram began to carefully move his body, checking about how much time had passed by the strength in his limbs.

    It hadn't been long, just long enough for his body to start to function properly again. Aram took a careful breath, testing the strength of his ribs, before he sat up carefully, wincing. He would need more time before he could return to even a modicum of his true strength, but for now he was functioning. That was more than he had expected at some points in this desperate fall. He was going to need a new suit as well. The scraps of the dark outfit that had not been destroyed in the crash were now irrevocably stained in his own blood.

    Aram continued his careful self-examination, thoroughly going over each arm to check for any remaining fractures before examining his chest a little better and checking the large gash that had been in his leg. All of his wounds were now well covered in the tar-like blood, which had congealed with an almost rock-like hardness. His bones would no longer break from standard movement, and it was doubtful that his intestines were going to suddenly fall out of his chest.

    Suddenly, Aram remembered the creature from earlier. Where was it? Had it left him, once it was satisfied that he was not going to die? Perhaps even now it was going to collect some more of its species so that they could imprison him. But, no, there it was, studying the wreckage of his ship. Most likely the creature had never seen anything like it, being from a planet that had yet to leave its own atmosphere. But the ship was in utter ruins, and even Aram's own engineer would not be able to pull anything of value from it. Perhaps that was for the best. He would not need to make sure that everything was scavenged when he left the planet.

    But before he could leave he had to pay off this life-debt to the creature. The last thing he could do was leave before it was settled, and risk one of his many opponents finding out about it. If they came and captured the creature, Aram would be forced to trade his own life to ensure its safety. He would think of some suitable repayment before he left, though. There was still time.

    His weakness meant that he could not yet begin the proper processes required for assimilation, but he could at least begin attempting to make a connection with the creature. Very carefully, Aram pushed himself to his feet. He was noticeably taller than the creature, but not so much so that he would alarm her. He carefully pulled four of his arms in closer to his body, trying his best to mimic the creature's two. That would have to do for now.

  12. She had been so enthralled by the ship, that she hadn't heard her charge remove itself from the bushes, until it spoke. It's single word gave her a start, and she spun around, one black drenched hand going to her racing heart. She was still smattered in black blood, and looked like some war-time refugee. "Oh," She said. "You're up." She glanced at the ship, one last time, before hurriedly stepping away from it.

    "I wasn't going to take anything." She explained, glancing at the sky. How had it gotten so late? Her parents would start to worry if she didn't get home soon.

    "We should go. People will have seen the crash." Again, she realized, she was talking to an alien. "Uh..." She lifted an arm, and drew a line in the air, diagonally, whistling as it dropped. When she dropped into a crouch, she made an explosion noise, and dropped her finger to the dirt before pointing at the ship. She then circled her own eyes with black-smudged hands, as if to pantomime binoculars.

    "We should go."

    She repeated, pointing first to the alien, and then to herself, and finally, back towards the road.

    "Can you walk?"

    Finally, she jogged in place, and pointed at the road once more.
  13. A look of amusement briefly flickered across Aram's face at the creature's over-the-top pantomime actions, but at the very least the creature's message was, in basics, clear enough. It wanted to depart the site of the wreckage. Uncomfortable with his own state of weakness, and still more than a little bit uncertain about the standard levels of hostility he could expect from the creatures of this planet, Aram twisted two of his hands on top of each other in agreement, before taking a couple of cautious steps forward.

    His leg was not in perfect condition, but it would support his weight. He walked his way carefully across the uneven ground, bare feet carefully probing through the grass to find solid footing. He only cast one last glance at the ship before turning aside and slowly moving in the direction the creature had pointed. The thing was of no use to him now. There was no reason for him to worry about it.

    Briefly he stared at the creature, taking just a moment to run through the various possibilities. It was not going to kill him, he knew that much. The possibility that it wanted to imprison him was still there, but that was highly unlikely unless it was a creature that took some sadistic pleasure from having its victims walk willingly into the slaughter. He had no evidence to prove this one way or the other, but he could not help but believe that its gentle hands belied this tendency.
  14. She grinned hopefully as the alien stepped, and stepped quickly to it's side, walking along beside it should it need her support. Occasionally, she'd glance back up at the alien in disbelief. A time or two, her lips parted as if she intended to speak, but she bit back her words each time, until they had gotten closer to the road. When they had, she was happy to find her truck alone on the shoulder.

    "We're in luck," She said, more to herself than to the alien. Quickly, she darted around to the passenger side of the vehicle, and opened the door. She pointed to the seat, and said "In." Simply.

    She went around to the driver's side, and pulled that door open as well, before suiting her own words, and climbing into the seat.

    She glanced at the alien to see if he understood his instructions. It occurred to her that she was addressing the alien as a masculine figure. She had to wonder if it was an accurate assessment. She had no real way of knowing, she supposed.

    "My name is Samantha, by the way." She said idly, touching her chest briefly to indicate herself once again as she uttered her name. She was catching on quickly to the use of body-language for communication.
  15. The journey through the forest was quiet, and Aram found himself wishing that the creature would resume speaking. It wasn't so much that he was bothered by the silence as it was that Aram was not fond of wasting an opportunity. The creature would need to speak significantly more before his translator was going to be able to make even a rudimentary understanding of her language. He would learn it soon enough, of course, once he was able to fully begin the process of assimilation, but for the next couple of days he was going to need to rely upon the translator. The sooner it began to build a working translation the better.

    But he was even less inclined to stop their journey to try and find a way to ask her to speak. If the creature found it necessary to leave the site, he would have to trust its judgement and cooperate as fully as possible.

    That didn't stop Aram from pausing when they got to a break in the forest, where some sort of hard black surface ran through the middle of the trees. He slowed as he approached it, carefully testing the surface with one toe, before he bent down to touch it more fully. It was hard and rough, seemingly comprised of many different substances that served to make a single unit. Content that it was not going to offer any sort of threat, Aram switched his attention to the thing that was on the side of the long rock.

    He walked up to it, briefly tapping the side, before seeing that the creature was getting inside. It only took him a further moment to realized that this was probably this planet's equivalent of a ship. Uncivilized indeed. But in the state he was in it would undoubtedly be faster than walking, and so Aram deigned to enter the craft. But it was now that the creature began to talk. Aram looked over at it, blinked a couple of times, before returning its attention to the black path. He did not understand this creature's priorities at all. Was this craft some sort of safe space?

    But when the engine finally began to crank Aram flinched in surprise, before letting out a pained hiss as his various injuries complained. He was no master engineer, but even he could pinpoint countless inefficiencies in the thing's design. By the stars, it even sounded like the thing was still running on some sort of corporeal fuel source. Slowly it began to move, and Aram waited for it to speed up further before realizing that this was probably the thing's top speed.

    Faster than walking, he reminded himself.
  16. "Sorry," Samantha said again, as the thing hissed in pain. She wasn't flooring it. She certainly didn't want to have to explain an alien passenger to the local police. What if they called the government, and the government came to take the alien away, to do an autopsy? She kicked herself for being silly. She'd seen one too many sci-fi flicks.

    "It's a little weird," She said, a tremor in her voice. "Going out for a joyride, and finding an alien. Dying." Her knuckles might have been white on the steering wheel, had they not been too grimy to discolor properly.

    "Performing what I think might have been surgery on something at whose anatomy I can only guess." She was babbling, but she didn't much care. It made coping with the situation a bit easier. "I don't know if you're a boy or a girl, really. You don't look like any girl I've seen, but I suppose there are more things in this world than I could imagine, so it only goes to follow that the things that aren't from this world could be even farther from my relatively small bubble of expertise than anything within."

    She stole another glance at her strange passenger. "You must be in incredible pain," She said, compassion leaking into her voice. Big, blue eyes returned to the road. "I don't really know what I'm going to tell my parents. Dad was pretty pissed the last time I brought home a bird with a broken wing. Guess what dad, I found another one that fell out of the sky! Only this one's got six arms, and might be related to Piccolo." She rolled her eyes.

    "Nerd reference. God, I'm glad you can't understand me."

    As they drove, they passed an orchard, and it seemed to have apples in full ripeness. It wasn't her parents farm, but occasionally she'd stop by to steal an apple or two. They were always sweet.

    "I hope you don't get sick. With the way you pulled yourself together, I've got to assume that your medicine's pretty advanced, but you'll have to be careful. Your immune system could be vulnerable to stuff we've been living with all our lives, and-" She broke off. "What am I saying? I'll warn you again when I teach you to speak. If you can speak."

    Again, she glanced at the alien, specifically his mouth. "I suppose you can make all the noises I can, so it should be possible. Probably. Unless you're telepathic or something, and you can read my thoughts."

    A big two-story farm house came into view, with a red barn that could have fit in any depiction of the american midwest ever portrayed.

    The vehicle rolled to a stop outside, and Samantha got out of the car, hurrying around to the passenger side to open the door for the alien.
  17. The creature began to speak again as the craft trundled slowly on. Aram mostly ignored her words. They were meaningless to him, and his translator would begin to sort through them whether he was paying attention to what she was saying or not. He took the time to study the world that was slowly moving past the craft. Naturally there were very few familiar elements, but after all of the planets that Aram had visited a little bit of newness was hardly unexpected. He would adjust quickly. The first priority would be finding something that his system would consider food, and which wouldn't poison him. Normally it wasn't that big of a deal to go a couple of days without eating before he was able to assimilate, but he had used all of his resources healing from the crash. He would need to replenish soon.

    By the end of the ride, the translator had finally started to pick up on some of the most basic elements of the language. "I", "if", "you". It was a start. Most likely he would be getting plenty more words soon. Most cognizant creatures liked to discuss when they found new things. Unless they were more of the butchering type than the conversing type. But he had already mostly established that this species, or at least this one example of the species, did not harm needlessly. Perhaps, in a massive chain of unlucky things, he had finally found a stroke of fortune.

    When the craft came to a halt Aram remained seated, unwilling to move without first getting permission from the creature that had saved his life. This was new territory, and until he knew the rules his best bet was to simply imitate and hope for the best. Although he was certain that he could handle anything this uncivilized species could dish out, he knew that this creature was taking him someplace it considered safe. He did not wish to offend the creature by being forced to kill its nest mates.

    The exit from the craft slid outwards under the creatures fingers, and Aram delicately moved out from within. However, he did not take more than a step or two away from the door, waiting from some signal from the creature.
  18. Samantha rubbernecked around the property, with all the stealth an eighteen year old girl could muster, before waving a hand towards herself, and moving towards the side of the house, where no doors were. A ladder lay beside the house, and she picked it up from it's resting place. She leaned it against the side of the house, and pointed to the window above.

    "Meet me up there. I'll let you in. I don't know how to tell my parents that I brought home an alien, so we'll just hide you for now." She was sure that that made all the sense of garbled radio static, but again pointed to the window for emphasis, before darting around to the front of the house.

    She poked her head into the entry-way, and was lucky to find nobody else there. Up the stairs she raced, to her room. "Home mom, love you!" She called hurriedly, before rushing into her bedroom, and hurrying to the window. She pulled it open, and stuck her head out to search for her alien companion. She gestured for him to join her up the ladder again, stabilizing the top of the ladder with her dirty hands.

    "Samantha?" Called her mother from the hallway. "Where did you go dear? I've made some hot dish, and it's warming in the oven."

    Sam rolled her eyes to herself, and called over her shoulder. "I'll be down soon mom, I've gotta change. Helped a fellow on the road, and got oil all over my clothes."

    "Well hurry down, or it'll get cold! And wash up before you do."

    "Yes momma, I will." She insisted.
  19. " ... you... ... ...I... ...alien..." Garbled radio static indeed.

    Aram eyed the ladder with a measure of disgust. It had been so long since Aram had been severely wounded that he had forgotten exactly how much he relied upon his body. Normally a leap to the space the creature wanted him to go to would have been completely manageable, but now he was going to be forced to slowly crawl his way up the side of the house like some parasitic slug. What his people would say if they could see him now. Most of them would probably abandon him then and there, if they didn't try and take his life for displaying such weakness.

    But Aram did what was required of him, waiting quietly until the creature appeared through the window. He placed two hands carefully on the ladder, testing its stability, before working his way up. It was a tedious and frustrating process, not aided by the fact that the ladder was clearly built for beings like the creature, who only had two arms. But he did eventually make it to the top, and all without making a single sound, even as he could feel the strain on his ribs building. The last thing he needed right now was for one of his ribs to break again. There was already blood all over the inside of the creature's craft. He would prefer not to get it into its nesting space as well.

    But getting through the window turned out to be a far trickier feat than Aram had originally anticipated. His broad chest wouldn't fit through the window comfortably, and when he tired to turn himself sideways and go through headfirst he nearly kicked the ladder over. Aram took a slow, steadying breath, ignoring the strain on his ribs, before forcing himself through the gap with a twist that would have done a contortionist proud.

    In pain and feeling mortifyingly fragile, Aram lay himself out carefully on the floor. The blood bonds that held his bones together were failing, and he needed to give them time to replenish before he attempted any sort of strenuous movement again.
  20. Samantha grimaced as she watched her guest come up the ladder, unable to do much beyond keeping the thing from wobbling, which was a feat in and of itself. When the thing began to crawl into her window, she hesitated to help him. He was injured after all, and she didn't know exactly where pulling on him would do damage. When he laid down on the floor she knelt beside him.

    "Okay, momma's got dinner on, so I'm gonna go get you some food."

    She opened her mouth wide, and bit the air, making a show of chewing nothing, swallowing, and rubbing her stomach with satisfaction. She glanced down at herself, and wrinkled her nose.

    "But first I'm going to change. I'm filthy, and I don't wanna have to explain all this-" She gestured to the blood. "- to my parents. You," She pointed at the alien. "Close your eyes," She squeezed her eyes shut, scrunching her face for effect. "Until I-" She pointed at her chest again. "Yell 'ready'!" She cupped her hands around her mouth.

    She was totally going to win charades at the next family gathering.

    Standing, she walked first to her dresser, and then to her closet to select some suitable clothes. It wasn't until she was sure the alien's eyes were closed, that she began to doff the dirtied garments, using them as rags to wipe her hands free of the rest of the blood, before slipping into the new clothes. Nothing special, just jeans, and a new tee-shirt.

    She stopped quickly by the bathroom to wash up and check herself for any excess blood, before slipping outside once again to replace the ladder against the house.
    "I'm gonna eat in my room, momma! School work. Food smells delicious!" She said, rushed, as she heaped a plate full of ham-and-green-bean cassarole, and darted upstairs, fork and spoon clutched in her free hand. She hurried into her room once again, and sat down besides the alien.
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