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A Hunting We Will Go

Posted on Fri Jan 17th, 2020 @ 8:19am by Chief Scientist Jinx Jorasco & Chief Helmsman Eden Bowers & Chief Armoury Jake Ford

Mission: Mission 10 - Temperance
Timeline: MD 10 1400

Eden looked around her feet first. She checked herself over, and then Jake. "No, he's not here. I must have accidentally let him go when we were sitting down over there. We better find him, Jake. The others will kill him on sight!" Eden was quite distressed that her little friend had wandered off. "Okay," she said, trying to calm herself down. "If I were a spider, where would I go? Someplace dark and cozy, which doesn't help, because this whole ship is that way. I probably would avoid people if I could." Eden wandered off without another word to him.

"Calm down," Jake urged, following best he could and trying to put his hands on her shoulders to settle her. "I can go grab a tricorder and we can scan for him." As much as it might be a little relief for Stan to disappear, Jake was more concerned about seeing Eden heartbroken.

"A tricorder, right." That made sense to her. Why hadn't she thought of it. She looked back at Jake and had a sudden thought. Hopefully there wasn't more than one jumping spider . . . .

There was a skittering of claws on metal as something came down the corridor and darted into the room. The size of a cat, the small raptor skidded to a stop on the deck plating. It had some blue streak patterns on its back, but was otherwise an earth tone green. It crouched, hissed, and bared it sharp teeth, its reptilian eyes watching Eden and Jake carefully. Then it edged closer, sniffing along Eden’s pant leg, the large claw on each foot tapping menacingly on the deck plating.

"Hello," Eden said as neutrally as possible. Of course, she was frightened of the creature, but she was trying not to show it. She certainly meant it no harm, as long as it didn't mean her any. She held out an arm to stop Jake from doing anything foolish.

"Relax. It's Zambi." Jake shrugged, still glancing around for sign of Eden's spider friend. "He won't hurt you. Although..." He frowned down at the lizard-like creature. "I don't know if its diet includes spiders..."

"A what?" Eden said, slightly confused, not only because she'd never seen this creature before but that Jake seemed to know it.

Zambi smelled Eden’s fear. It made her blood run hot, like any predator. It hissed, showing its sharp teeth again, crouching to pounce.

“Zambi! Chini!!” came a sharp command. “Hapa!

There was a low whine from the raptor and it scampered away as a small figure rounded the corridor. She was a tiny woman, less than three feet in height. She had red hair and green eyes, with freckles spotted over a cute, pert nose. She was small and lithe with an athletically toned body. She had facial tattoos, as well. On her left side, along her eye and upper cheek, was a stylized tribal winged creature in black. On her left cheek was painted a blue line that didn’t seem to be an actual tattoo, but rather face paint.

The raptor rushed up to the little woman. “Good girl,” she said, feeding the cat-sized lizard a piece of jerky. “Sorry about that. She gets a little excited about meeting new people.” The small woman smiled, brushing back her red hair.

"Uh, Eden...this is Jinx. Jinx, Eden." Jake decided to pre-empt Eden's normal reaction to make sure they were properly introduced. Between the quirkiness of both, he was both interested and terrified to see how this encounter would turn out -- especially with Stan somewhere unknown.

"Hi, there. You don't eat spiders, do you? Haven't had a snack lately, have you? I'm missing a friend. He's about this big, kind of a tan color. Big black eyes." Eden moved her hands to show Zambi the size, as if she would understand everything Eden was saying. "Oh, and hello," Eden said, finally looking at the other woman. "Sorry, priorities are kind of set on finding my friend before the other people on this ship roast him."

“Oh, no problem. I’d be the same way if Zambi was missing. But she mostly listens to me,” Jinx said, scratching the raptor’s eye ridges. “Need some help? Zambi’s a good tracker.” She cupped the lizard’s chin to meet her eyes. “No eating the spider,” she told Zambi.

Zambi hissed.

“She’ll help,” Jinx told Eden with a smile. “So are you raising it to get bigger?” she asked. “Nice and fat? I know some good recipes for spiders. There are some big plains spiders back home.”

"No," Eden replied, with a bit wider eyes. "He's a pet. I just found him here and decided to rescue him. I'm going to bring him back to Rosie with me."

“Oh, a pet. Hm. Well, I never would consider a spider a pet -- a good Ascension Day meal, maybe, but not a pet -- but okay. Do you have anything with the spider’s scent on it?” Jinx asked. “Where did you last see him?”

Eden might have asked what Ascension Day was, but she was distracted by the question. "Right over there. And, well, I was holding him for a long time. Would there still be a scent on my hands? He's a new pet, I just discovered him, and decided to rescue him from a life of living on this cold ship, plus a couple of people wanted to kill him because they were afraid."

“Well, I’m not afraid. I am getting hungry, though,” Jinx mused. “Your hands might work. Hold them out for Zambi. Don’t worry. She won’t bite,” she reassured Eden. She gave a gesture, and the small raptor stepped up again. “Find the spider, Zambi. Time to hunt. But no killing,” she affirmed.

Eden placed her hands down toward the floor, palms out to the raptor. She wasn't afraid any longer, merely curious about the creature. She'd never seen anything like her. "I'll bring you an extra special treat for this if you find Stan, whatever it is you like to eat."

“Not sure you can get hornblower eggs out here,” Jinx said, amused, “but the sentiment is appreciated.”

Zambi sniffed at Eden’s hands. Her breath was warm. She opened her mouth, showing her sharp teeth.

“It’s okay,” Jinx reassured Eden. “It helps her get the scent.”

Zambit turned around, starting to circle the area, snuffling and hissing. Then she suddenly froze.

“She’s got it.” Jinx hurried over to the small raptor and scratched her chin. “Fetch!” she said. “No kill!”

Zambi hissed -- acknowledgement of orders, or annoyance at not being allowed the kill? -- and raced off, following the scent.

Eden grabbed Jake's hand and hurried off after her. Her emotions were almost spilling toward the surface, and if they found Stan okay, she might even lose a couple of tears over it. Who knew she could get so attached to a spider.

Jake followed, albeit a little reluctantly. His concern was more for Eden and how she would be if anything happened to her new pet. Admittedly, he would have been gutted for her if she couldn't find him in one piece.

Suddenly sucking in a breath, she saw a spider scamper across their path. Eden raced forward and scooped him up into her hands. "Stan! Oh my god! Thank you so much, Zambi! I'm going to find you the biggest treat ever. I wouldn't have thought he'd gone that far."

Jinx smiled. “Here, girl,” she said, tossing a bit of dried meat to the raptor. Zambi snapped it up eagerly in her jaws and retreated to munch on it.

“So that’s Stan,” Jinx observed. “A little on the small side. Wouldn’t provide much of a meal. He’s kind of cute. Does he eat jerky?” She held up one of Zambi’s treats to the spider.

"I don't know," Eden replied, just as curious as the other woman.

Stan seemed to move very slowly toward the treat and then suddenly snapped it up, protecting it under all his legs.

"I guess so. Thank you very much." Eden grinned at her. "For finding him, and for the treat."

Jinx smiled back. “Not a problem,” she said. “I’m glad I could help. I know what it’s like to mislay a friend,” she said, scratching Zambi’s head. “Good girl,” she praised the raptor. “Might be good to get a carrier or cage for him until he learns not to run away.”

"Yes, he'll have an aquarium in my quarters. I do want to see if I can train him though." Eden examined him, apparently concerned that he might be injured in some way. Then, satisfied, she perked up happily and returned to Jake.

FIN




Eden Bowers
Chief Helmsman
SS Mary Rose

Jake Ford
Chief Armoury Officer
SS Mary Rose

Jinx Jorasco
Chief Science Officer
SS Mary Rose

 

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Comments (1)

By Captain Rueben Gregnol on Fri Jan 17th, 2020 @ 10:36pm

HA! I felt like Jake reading this both intrigued and scared by the quirkiness.

Good post guys!