Chapter 49



                                                Chapter 49



Feeling the warmth snuggling in front of him, Aaron opened his eyes, pulling Kenny closer to him as he glanced over at the clock and glared as if it was the most horrendous thing on the planet, deciding he'd better go to the bathroom and start his day, he carefully disentangled himself from the arms and legs of Doug and Pat as he wiggled out of the covers. Finished Aaron carefully rearranged the covers over the sleeping threesome, headed out of his bedroom and peaked into Xon’s room to see that he and Ichiro were curled up together. It had been touch and go for a while after releasing Ichiro, but in the end, they had gotten through to him. Leaving the two sleeping peacefully, he decided to go up to his office and get the day started



Staring at the plasma as he read the email for the third time, he tried to figure out what the hell was wrong with these people, how many times did he have to tell them that he was not interested, for that matter, why were they not understanding him when he told them Alteran’s only had one sex and there was no such thing as a female, and he was not really interested in getting married, now how to tell this princess to bugger off. Creating a filter that would dispose of any further marriage offers without them being delivered, he realized that this marriage offer was not for him or one of his guys, but for Edward. Quickly catching the email reply before it was sent, Aaron deleted it and changed the filter so all marriage proposals would go into a folder he just created. The only question was, who could he stick with this job. No that wouldn’t work would it? He thought, but the more he thought about it the more it seemed fitting. Grinning evilly, Aaron typed out a quick message asking Kenny to handle this for him, and after sending it chuckled, let the chaos begin.



Going through the rest of his emails, Aaron stopped at another, having to read it again from the beginning; it was a request for aid, from Brazil of all places. Their local President was asking for help in fixing their broken economy, the thing that made this different was the list of released technology they had investigated and what they planned to do with it to fix their problems. Scrolling to the next page, he saw the figures laid out in neat rows, for every item bought at a wholesale price and resold, there were several columns telling him exactly what the income would be funding. This whole thing boiled down to a business plan that would fund their government and revitalize the economy, or at least on paper it looked that way.



Staring at the world map on the side plasma screen he brought up, if he made inroads into South America, the only place lacking a presence was Australia, which was surprising he had thought they would be one of the first ones to approach him with something like this. Making a decision, Aaron replied to the email and congratulated them on being thorough and letting them know he would be available tomorrow at one for a meeting. Altare One would touch down promptly at quarter till one, and he would need a guide for any of the Clan that decided to accompany him, they would wander around the city and country side while they met.



“I woke up and you were gone,” Kenny told him, as he rubbed the sleep out of his eyes as he entered the office, stopping in front of the map of South America, and trying to get his tired brain to work, “Are we going to…” looking closer to the map, “Brazil?” Kenny asked, as he turned around to face Aaron.



“Tomorrow afternoon, they sent in a proposal that looks promising, they want our help, yet at the same time, they don’t want us to do the work just let them buy our technology wholesale so they can resell it and use the money to help their people. Want to go along?” Aaron smiled as Kenny brightened at the thought then he saw him frown and look sad.



“I really want to, but I have testing tomorrow and I can’t miss any of it,” Kenny sounded really down, he wanted to go, but tomorrow was to important to his plans and he had worked so hard to get this far.



Pulling up the tutor program, Aaron brought up logs and looked through Kenny’s work and testing schedule, blinking back in surprise when he saw that the tests scheduled for tomorrow where his high school graduation tests...for all his courses. “Damn, Kenny, you’ve done real well in your studies, I’m very proud of you.” Thinking about it for a moment, “Okay, you deserve this for all the hard work, I’m willing to override the testing day either letting you take them today or Saturday, giving you an extra day if you promise not to touch the tutor tomorrow.”



“Really!” Kenny brightened as he thought about it, not sure he could keep the promise not to log into the tutor, he took a deep breath and puffed his chest out, “Today please, otherwise I don’t think I can keep from logging in tomorrow.” He grinned as he had become addicted to learning, “I need to call Jason and ask him to cover for me today, I need to go get ready.” Reaching up to activate his communicator, he realized it was not in his ear and looked horror struck for a moment before running out of the office to get it. Laughter followed him out of the office and down the hall as he ran back to the bedroom.



Walking in and leaning over to kiss Aaron, David looked back towards the common room, “Was that my brother? And why is he so excited?”



Smiling, Aaron did as promised and rescheduled Kenny’s tests for today, “He’s so psyched over taking his high school graduation tests, when he passes this series of tests; he will be ready to start college courses.”



“Holy Shit, that’s fantastic,” David was proud of his little brother, “I think I'd better buckle down this week and deal with chemistry. After I pass that, I’ll be at the same point as Kenny.” Smirking, he glanced back at Aaron, “It just won’t do to let him get too far ahead of me, being the older brother and all.” After he finished laughing he sat on the arm of the chair, “Actually I think most of us are ready to graduate at the high school level and move on, I know Derrick could if he would work a little on the biology section.”



“I heard my name, what’s this about biology,” Derrick entered the room frowning, as much as he loved the business courses and working with numbers, he just did not get the rush out of the biology section as some of the others.



“Kenny is sitting his high school graduation exams today, which means I need to buckle down and finish up chemistry this week,” smirking at Derrick, who was looking at him nervously, “And it means you need to buckle down and pass biology, so Kenny does not shame us, it’s bad enough he will graduate before I do.”



Gulping and nodding his head, Derrick hastily agreed, much to Aaron’s amusement, “Okay.”



Not seeing anything worth reading email wise, Aaron quickly fired off an email telling Edward and Andrew he would be at Elswick this morning, before closing the program and standing. Just in time as the rest of the Clan started to gather in the room ready to start their day.



Arriving at the vet barn, Aaron went straight to the tack room, today he was going to do some riding and look over the grounds so he could decide the best way to move everything come the weekend.  Slipping his tight leather shorts on then buckling his chaps at his waist before wrapping the rest of his legs in the black leather and zipping the sides up, he picked up his saddle and bridle and mind called for his horse, after straightening the bunched up leather in his crotch.



Hearing cheers from behind him, Aaron turned with a smile as the group taking their turn at being cowboys saw how he was dressed. Holding his saddle on one shoulder he laughed as he started hug duty on his way to the fence, propping his saddle on the top rail he scratched his mare’s withers as he finished giving hugs and congratulations to the excited youngsters who were proudly telling him about their latest accomplishments. Twenty minutes later he placed his foot in the stirrup and swung up into the saddle. Standing up in the stirrups as he tested his seat Aaron smiled as this morning’s set of cowboys hooped and hollered as they warmed up in preparation for Marks herd roundup.



“We are going to need a lot more horses before this weekend is out, we have twenty four, which does not include our two horses, but we have fifty riders and several more wanting to learn.” Mark had ridden over and then giggled when he saw what Aaron was wearing, “Gods above they’re all going to want to wear leather now after seeing you in that outfit.” Leaning over for his morning kiss Mark released Aaron’s lips with, “You are so hot in that getup.”



“Stop that,” Aaron chuckled, “This is not the getup to be popping wood in.” watching the impromptu races for a moment, “So what’s your solution and what breed are your thinking of,” he asked as he nudged his mount into a walk towards the group of cowboys.



“You know me too well; I was thinking of Quarter Horses, they would be the best choice for our inexperienced riders. I was checking out a couple of breeding farms in the States and I found one that has what we need, well trained mares and geldings,” Mark told him before he whistled to get everyone’s attention and gave the signal to move out.



Aaron watched the youngsters gather together and double check their equipment as he thought things through, “Go ahead and get…let’s get fifty horses, that will give us a couple of dozen extra mounts, we'll have to get some more in the future more than likely, try to get a third of them already bred and order enough semen that we have some good choices to breed the rest with.”



“I might have to go to several places then,” Mark didn’t expect to get to buy that many at one time, “I’ll send an email later, after breakfast, to set up an appointment with the one farm, I might be able to sneak a look today and get the first group bought and home before supper.”



Passing the fence line nearest the tractors, Aaron spotted Doug standing up on his hauler and waving his arms to get his attention. “I’ll talk to you later,” Aaron told Thunder mentally to turn towards the fence and several steps later he ported both of them next to Doug and stopped.



Alright I’ll give you mentally commanding your horse by a light link to her mind, but how the hell did you manage to port mid step?” Mark sent in wonder and confusion.



Because we are lightly linked she trusts me, as I don’t react to the sudden shift of location neither does she. Try linking for a while, lightly with Broke Back and start with small ports of four feet or so, then change to a different direction while standing then moving, it won’t take long to train him up.” Aaron replied, as he looked over at Doug, “Hello, Love, what can I help you with this morning?”



Doug, shocked that Aaron and his horse appeared next to the hauler noticed the horse did not have a bridle and eyed her warily while speaking, “I did a little research last night. What I want to know is can we raise some sheep when we move, I kind of miss having them around.”



Reaching over and snagging Doug from the hauler, Aaron pulled him into the saddle with him, “Of course you can, what type of sheep are you thinking about, I’m not sure we need the wool, but we can certainly use the meat, I like lamb chops,” he giggled as his mare turned and looked at them. “See, Thunder even likes the idea.”



“You’re silly,” Doug giggled before seeing Thunder stare at him with those big eyes and wink at him, causing his eyes to bug out in shock as she shook her head and neighed. “She…She…She just winked at me,” he whispered in shock.



“I told you she liked the idea,” Aaron laughed, as Thunder stomped a hoof and neighed again having picked up on his amusement. Hugging Doug close, “If you want some sheep, go for it, just do the research and find the farms you can buy stock from, Tommy will help you make a list, I’m sure.”



Giggling, Doug nodded his head before squirming his way back down, standing on the seat of his hauler he smiled, “Thank you, I know Tommy sure likes to make lists.”



“That he does, Love, that he does,” Aaron waved as he nudged his mount on and took off down the path towards the grove, porting to the beach near the sea farm after thunder broke into a gallop.



Letting the salt spray whip up around them as Thunder galloped through the surf snorting and neighing in fun, Aaron spotted Tommy and a few of the youngsters hauling feed from the sea farm up the hill to the fresh water farm, waving at them, Aaron laughed at the cheers and shouts from the youngsters vying for his attention. Mentally nudging Thunder towards the hill by the sea farm, he had her slow down as the youngsters crowded around wanting their hugs. Slipping out of the saddle he laughed as thunder was getting as many hugs as he was.



Tommy did a double take as he saw Aaron dismount dressed in tight leather and blushed as his mind went into the gutter and wondered how it would feel to rub up against him and all that leather. Shaking out of those thoughts before his body had much more of a chance to react, Tommy waved and smiled as his lover made his way through the youngsters to his side, “That was a very neat trick porting at a run, we saw you appear from up here.” Laughing Tommy stared at the ocean for a moment, “A hundred years ago, what we do would be called magic and I wonder if others traveled into the past to set up our myths, maybe longer than that.”



“I hope not, most of the survivors of that war were cyborg’s without access to their gifts, something about being part machine interfered with the use of their gifts,” Aaron snorted as he pulled Tommy close, “I actually stopped by to ask you to help create a list for Doug, he wants to raise a few sheep when we get moved.”



Laughing, Tommy lightly punched Aaron on the arm as he spun out of his hug, “Sure make fun of my list making skills until you need them.” Dancing back to his hauler he called back, “I’ll be happy to help him out.”



Thunder walked over and placed her head over Aaron’s shoulder and pulled him close to her body and snorted as Tommy zoomed away. Scratching between her eyes Aaron got lost in thought for several moments before porting to Thunder’s back and settling in the saddle before giving her a gentle kick to get her started. Hitting a gallop Aaron ported the two of them back to the other side of the island near the fruit groves, receiving the excitement from Thunder as she ran up the beach and into the rows of orange trees.



Finished giving Thunder a good wash down from their morning run, Aaron felt recharged and ready to go, patting Thunder on the neck he gave her a mental nudge and laughed as she took off running and kicking up like a yearling as he went back into the barn. Starting the shower, Aaron let the hot water soak his sweaty body for a moment before turning at the sound coming from the doorway, searching through the steam he spotted someone, looking closer, he recognized the tear streaked face, “Donny, what in the world? What’s wrong?…come here,” he motioned the teen over and pulled him into a hug as Donny stood there sobbing.



When the teen was reduced to hiccups and shivering in the heat and steam, Aaron reached over and grabbed the shampoo, squirting some in his hand he started to wash Donny’s hair surprising him as he was washed like a child, “I have no clue why you had this meltdown, but I am willing to listen and help you, all you have to do is tell me what is wrong.”



‘I’m being a baby…sorry, I didn’t mean to cry like that,” Donny whispered sadly.



“Well I can tell you needed to let it out, and even I have my meltdowns from time to time as painful memories get out of control,“ Aaron whispered in Donny’s ear as he massaged the soap into the teen's shoulders before moving down his back. “I sometimes wonder what parents are teaching their kids when they tell them a man does not cry, sometimes a guy needs a good cry just as much as a woman does, it doesn’t make you any less of a man if you do.”



“You’ll think I’m silly and make fun of me if I tell you?” Donny whispered, as he looked out the door wondering what to do. On one hand he wanted to run and hide, embarrassed for breaking down in front of Aaron and on the other hand the comfort he was receiving was making him want to melt into those safe arms.



“So, you want to make love to a grapefruit all day long, I have to agree that is pretty silly, especially when the real thing is all around you,” Aaron smirked in amusement.



“WHAT!!!” Donny stood up straight staring in shock as he tried to figure out where the hell that came from.



“Well,” Aaron drawled as he kept his laughter in check while he turned the stunned teen around and started to wash his chest. “You said I would think it was silly, and that is the silliest thing I could think of,” he told him as he knelt down so he could soap up Donny’s legs, glancing up he chuckled at the deep blush on Donny’s face.



“Um…NO,” Donny said slowly, as Aaron stood up and he realized that he had been washed all over, and he meant all over without realizing it. Sighing as he was pushed under the water so the soap could be rinsed off, he decided to just blurt it out and take the laughter he knew was coming, “Of all the things I miss the most is my morning runs with Buster and I miss our walks in the woods.”



Pulling Donny out of the water as he traded places, Aaron tried to remember if he knew what Donny was talking about, and he had no idea. Shutting the water off, Aaron pulled the teen into a small chamber with him and hit the drying cycle, “I guess I really don’t know how you lost Buster, and I don’t want to bring back bad memories, but will you tell me what happened, I know it will be hard at first, but after a while the good things you and Buster did will overwhelm the pain.”



Sighing Donny looked out the glass walls, “Buster was my German Sheppard, and he was the best friend I ever had or could want. He was killed when the CPS workers came to tell me my parents had been killed, they startled me when they broke the door down and he attacked. He was protecting me and she had the officer shoot him,” he sobbed in pain,



Aaron pulled him close and pathed Bruce, “Bruce, I’m on my way to the Clan Hall and I have Donny, one of the rescues with me, he is in a lot of emotional pain right now, his dog and companion died to protect him. Could you meet me at the dining area, I think he could use a little of ‘the peoples’ perspective and a friend.” Smiling down at the teen in his arms, Aaron ported the two of them to the dining hall, after they appeared the hall grew silent as the Clan saw Aaron with someone crying in his arms, “Donny come sit with me, with us, I don’t think it's silly or any of the other crap you probably told yourself that people would make fun of you, I think half the people we rescued would cry with you after finding out why you were upset, the other half would just hold you because they don’t know what to do about your loss and how to make you feel better. What that case worker did was wrong and she should be punished for having buster shot for doing his job, you have every right to miss him and cry over his loss.”



Seeing Bruce running up the path by the wall, Aaron tightened his hug, “I have someone I want you to meet. Bruce is part of Clan Security, and he is Apache, I hope he can help you by giving you perspective, and maybe the two of you can talk things through as you explore the forests of the farm world, or even our new Home World.” Pushing the teen away slightly Aaron pointed to the ground, “I think you’ve been taught how to recognize portation points so take a good look at that one, this one leads to the Clan Hall, at any time you need to talk, you come here and someone will talk with you.”



Turning Donny around so he was facing Bruce in all his glory, all six feet five inches of him with a long braid down one side with several long feathers in his braid Aaron felt the surprise in Donny, from body contact, “Donny…meet Bruce, Bruce meet Donny.” Chuckling as the shy teen that materialized where the distraught one stood a moment before, “Both of you grab some food before it is all gone then Bruce will take you for a long walk and help you, Donny.”



Bruce reaching out, pulled Donny into a hug and steered him towards the food table as Aaron went over to his guys and sat down, giving them a chance to bond before going for his own breakfast.



“Is that Donny?” Tim asked, as he finally placed a name to the face, he had left unsaid who was Buster, as he glanced back to Aaron and frowned as he was sitting there without food.



“Yes, and relax I’m letting those two bond slightly, I’ll be getting my food in a minute, once they step away from the steam tables.” Looking at Tim, Aaron pathed him so he would know the truth, “I have no intention of not eating this morning.” Seeing the two walk away from the steam tables, Aaron stood and quickly made his way over and filled his plate before returning to the table.



Aaron had just finished his breakfast and was sipping his juice; he had heated it slightly as a trial to see if he liked it that way and found it was an interesting experience, he felt it added something different to the experience. Glancing up from the last piece of toast he was munching on, he noticed Xon sit down, followed by Ichiro who stood to the side, nervously. Motioning him over, Aaron pulled him into his lap and fondled him briefly, not enough to get him hard, more to rearrange his equipment for him as he whispered in Ichiro’s ear. Grinning as Ichiro blushed and jumped up and ran off, he turned back to see Xon looking at him with a raised eyebrow, “Yes…” he drawled with a grin.



“What did you tell him? After waking this morning and showering, he seemed to not want to leave my side.” Xon asked curiously, as he thought over what he had read, “I might have researched the wrong data sets as Ichiro does not act as the texts explained.”



Laughing, Aaron shook his head; leave it to Xon, he thought, “Welcome to real life; the problem with books is that unlike scientific texts, A plus B does not always lead to C.” leaning across the table, “I told Ichiro that he needed to do his tutor session and this afternoon he needed to hold his painting class like normal, and if he did well, he would get to be drained until he could not cum any more as he did his best to feed me everyone’s loads tonight.”



Grinning in glee at Xon’s reaction and surprise, “He’s a submissive bottom boy, and he will respond to training in assertiveness the best by using sex as a reward, the more he stands up and on his own, the more sex he gets, the more submissive the less sex he gets.” Shrugging, Aaron grinned at Derrick, “He’ll learn quickly and without being punished or thinking he is being rejected.”



“Enough about sex, and my lack of nookie this morning,” Aaron piled his dishes up, “I know you have the Crèche to start replicating this morning, how much of your attention will that take up? I was inspecting the groves this morning after hug duty and I think I would like to start putting the orchards into the buffers and transplanting them to the farm planet, if we can get everything transplanted except for the livestock by Saturday, we can move the livestock over come Saturday night after it gets dark, when they go down for the night.”



Waving Mark and Brian over, “Tomorrow afternoon, after my meeting in Brazil, I want to go back to the farm planet and set up some of the buildings and things like the chicken tractors so that Saturday night when we take the livestock after they go to sleep for the night, come Sunday morning, they will wake up none the wiser in their new homes.” Aaron smiled at Kevin and Pete, “Tomorrow night, I will not be around for supper, as I plan to finish a few projects using the replication centers over there, I have a list of projects I want to have done and ready before we move over.”



Pointing to Mark, “Our herds will be transplanted to the tropical station, the island that would be Puerto Rico in this world, I am going to install weather shields around the island so we won’t have to worry about hurricanes or the like, so I plan to build our main base there, including a small village, some of the younger guys will want to spend the night from time to time, and I’m sure we will too. Come to think of it, I might port over there this morning to get some things set into motion, ready for the groves to be transplanted there.” Aaron spotted Tommy dressed and ready to go, waiting for Friedrich to get here, “Tommy…” getting his attention he smiled, “I hope you weren’t planning on leaving without giving me a kiss goodbye.”



Blinking in surprise, Tommy rushed over, “Sorry, I forgot being all excited, I can’t wait the Aquaponics Short course starts this morning and I can’t wait to get over there and start learning.” Kissing Aaron soundly, Tommy broke the kiss and smiled in apology before rushing back when he heard Friedrich’s voice as he walked down the path, seems he was giving orders left and right to make sure that in his absence things would be covered.



Once Tommy and Friedrich had left, Aaron looked back to Xon for the answer to his question, “Once the design is locked in, the replication process only needs to be monitored, the crews are capable of doing other tasks,” Xon informed him.



Closing his eyes for a second as he thought about it, “Okay, target your collectors at one of the several landfills for mass retrieval, and start building the Crèche, use all three sets of MRB’s from Sol Station and lock the construction in, then have the Reliant team start to beam out, I think the Confederation calls it, all of our groves, leave the experimental grove alone I have other plans for where my experimental grove should go. I’ll path the coordinates to you when I return; either that or I’ll set up several beacons, more than likely both, so this afternoon the Reliant knows where to transport the groves.” Aaron smiled as the group broke up, “This afternoon, I’ll be checking up with Elswick and the Asclepius.”



Picking up his dishes, Aaron started for the kitchen as everyone started going their own way, “I’m only a thought away, for Pete at least, while I’m off planet.”



Appearing on the Sol Station gestalt deck, Aaron was slightly surprised to find it fully manned and that they were talking over the hyper spatial channel with a team onboard the Centauri Station, “Good morning, don’t mind me, I’m only here to borrow some power and then I’m  off again.” grinning as he pulled power from the gestalt generator, Aaron ported himself to the other station and waved at the crew he had just left before he greeted the new crew and ported himself down to the command and control center.



Walking into the new replication control center, Aaron smiled as he gazed at the console and cracked his fingers in preparation of using it for the first time, sitting down behind the center console he looked over the controls briefly before logging in and powering the system up, first things first he told himself. Sensing the gestalt links in his chair, he activated them before porting all eighteen MRB’s to the spot where the live video feed from the SE110 on tropical station was originating, opening the side wall, he let the collector arrays out, then thinking things through, he ported one over to the island and set the array to start dematerializing mass for the sub basement. Choosing a quick design for the tropical control station, Aaron designed the power vault while the collector dug the hole, a type one mark nine reactor should do it he thought, as he dug through the quantum scans for power reactors, Xon and Pete’s teams had been busy scanning everything they could get their hands on, it looked like.



Finished with the control station, he locked it in and smiled as the MRB’s took off, creating the new station. After watching for a few minutes to make sure the program was being followed, Aaron started searching through the data base for scans of several different types of barns, he needed one for the horses and several for the poultry, not to mention the one for their cattle. Finally deciding on several types that would work, he set the designs up and chose locations for them to be built before locking them into the program. Last but not least, Aaron slid down and linked into the mainframe system and looked for the harvesters and ground tilling machines; finding them in one of the storage buildings somewhere over on the west coast, he ported them to the island in the area where he was planning to place the citrus groves and set them to work. He programmed the harvesters to mow the fields and remove the tall clippings while he programmed the tillers to dig thirty foot wide rows every thirty feet.



Setting the controls to mow the fields followed by the tillers turning everything under, Aaron started them and then programmed the mowers to mow the open swaths last and dump their clippings into the newly tilled ground where the tillers would go back over the area once the mowers powered down. Assured the instructions were locked into the system; Aaron stood up and stretched, walking over to the plasma screen to watch the MRB’s quickly construct the tiered open sided building that when finished would house the vet barn and small replication suite. Finished for now, Aaron pulled power from the gestalt and ported to Centauri station before returning to Sol Station, the rest of the work he needed to do could be done tomorrow, step one for the great move had been started.



Activating his LSB, Aaron appeared outside the Asclepius in a shimmer of sparkles, deciding to inspect the Asclepius first, he walked across the gangway, stopping just inside the door as he gazed at the triage bay and frowned when he saw the long line of people and patients standing in front of the desk, letting his eyes roam the deck, he did not see one of his people anywhere. Moving along the wall, he noticed several security type people and they were not Alteran’s, just what the hell was going on here? He thought, as he extended his mic. Stopping at the corner of the triage desk, Aaron let his fingers trace a pattern on the touch screen.



“Get back in line and get your health card out, there will be no jumping the queue on my watch,” The man spat out without looking up as he told the woman in front of him, “I want to see your referral form, there will be no treatment without a proper referral form.”



“Who the hell are you and what are you doing on my ship?” Aaron spat out, as he saw the young boy with the woman hacking and coughing and obviously having trouble breathing.



“Sir, if you will move away from there and get back in line like you were asked,” one of the security guards placed a hand on Aarons shoulder and tried to pull him away.



Feeling the hand on his shoulder, Aaron went from mad to enraged and waved his hand throwing the man across the deck using kinetics, glaring at the man as the rest of the security forces rushed over with weapons in their hands, Aaron’s eyes narrowed in rage. Tapping the side of his communicator, he let his finger fall on the flashing part of the touch screen, “Security to the triage deck, action stations.”



As alarms starting ringing throughout the ship, Aaron ignored the drawn guns and stared at the officious little man, “I will not repeat myself what the hell are you doing on my ship?”



Cringing in fright as this was evidently one of the doctors from that Kingdom, he squeaked out, “Guards.”



Head turning quickly when he heard the sound of a gun being chambered behind him, Aaron glared at the offending man letting his finger trace another pattern on the touch screen, “You are creating an international incident here, and I’m not sure your Queen would be happy with you.”



Seeing that the man actually could use the equipment and he was activating something, he poked his head over the top of the desk, “STOP HIM!!! Stop Him before he completes what he is doing!”



There screams of panic as a gunshot rang out, one of the guards had taken the instructions literally, and fired his gun intending to kill Aaron.



Aaron swore as he felt something hot on his shoulder and was enraged that he let his guard down like he had. Eying up the guards with hate filled eyes, every gun toting intruder ended up on the floor with both arms broken in several places, as Aaron kinetically disabled them, a moment later, he had the officious little man by the throat and shoved up on the wall. “You are on Alteran Soil…You are on my Embassy.” Rage built up as high as it could go, Aaron let it out as he invaded the man’s mind, ignoring the countdown on the plasma as he sought answers, it hit zero as the man screamed in agony from having his mind bashed through.






Alarms sounded throughout the ship as all open hatches sealed as the computer had not been contacted by any of the crew so it followed invasion protocols, the Asclepius pulled away from the dock and started to submerge.



The officer of the watch jumped up out of his chair he had been reclining in a moment before when the alarms started sounding and the speakers started blaring out, “CODE 99…ASCLEPIUS DECLARING CODE 99…”



Slamming his hand down on the condition red button he tied the situation room monitors into the Asclepius’s internal security net, finding the bridge empty the OOD started switching views and he went cold as he looked on the scene of the triage deck, there was Aaron bleeding from the shoulder and holding someone by the neck up on the wall. Swearing, he went over to the alert button and slammed his hand against it two more times for good measure.



“CAG…Screaming Eagles to Elswick, release and drop…CODE 99 confirmed,” Frank, was only supposed to be the OOD, not brass who should make these type of decisions, yelled over the intercom, “I need someone from Clan Stranton in here, now!!!”



“Thomas what the bloody hell is going on?” Edward yelled out as they approached the docks after parking near the old naval hospital , Edward looked over in shock as the Asclepius was submerging with three large helicopters on the landing pads still, a moment later the helicopters started to slip sideways as the water rushed over the landing pads and the Asclepius disappeared from sight. Looking at Thomas who was just as shocked, he called out as he took off for the foreman’s trailers, “Come on we better contact grandmother.”



Having been visiting some friends, some of them helped him every morning doing chores Pat was shocked and scared when Stanley ran over and grabbed him before porting him to the military docks without saying anything, “Sorry, but the military is calling for someone from the Clan, and it’s an emergency.” Stanley told him as he pulled on Pat's arm and dragged him into the office area and past the officers working there who pointed towards the situation room.



Finally being released, Pat looked around and wondered what the hell was going on as Frank caught sight of Pat and ran over, “Sir, I need you to speak for Clan Stranton right now,” taking a deep breath he pointed up at the monitor, “His majesty has been attacked and is bleeding, the Asclepius has squawked CODE 99.”



Pat froze in fright as he looked up at the plasma monitor and saw the person who meant the most to him covered in blood and people running towards him with guns. He felt like his chest was on fire as he sobbed in terror a moment before his head was on fire as he yelled out at the top of his voice, “NO…AARON, BEHIND YOU.” Right then with the extreme fright sending powerful waves of hormones and adrenalin through his system, Pat started to experience breakthrough, several years way to early as the stress induced by seeing his world in danger over powered his system. “STOP THEM,” Pat screamed out in his head and his abilities broke through, the OOD winced in pain as the mental command reverberated through his brain and every Alteran on the island.



Wincing, trying to clear his vision he caught the tail end of a flicker and looked up to see Pat was gone and glancing up at the sound of an indrawn breath, he saw Pat on the monitor angry and in the path of the people with guns. “Gods above…Everyone drop what you’re doing and port to the Asclepius before it’s too late.” Frank screamed out at the Marines who had rushed through the door, and ported himself to the triage deck. The Marines taking one look at the monitor paled and followed the OOD, weapons drawn.



Not knowing what he was doing, or how he appeared behind Aaron, Pat threw up his hands at the approaching men and yelled out “NO…” as he willed with every fiber of his being for them to be gone before they hurt Aaron.



Aaron registered a loud no, before he heard several sickening crunches, glancing behind him he saw Pat wobbling about and just past him against the bulkhead were several more security guards, releasing his hold on the puppet he rushed over and scooped Pat up as the triage deck was flooded with his Marines. Holding Pat tight to his chest as Pat sobbed in pain and fear Aaron glared at the men screaming in pain on the floor, his people should have been here by now, and what the hell,  he heard the computer sounding the code 99, “Secure this ship..Deck by deck find our people,” he yelled out as Frank came over, he was very shaken and began to talk to him.



“Sir, Pat he ported all by himself, and he pathed so loud it took me several moments to see again.” Frank whispered in awe and concern, as he saw Pat was shaking in Aaron’s arms.



Holding Pat tight so he did not drop him, Aaron gently pushed Pat’s head up and noticed he was almost seizing and his eyes where only showing the whites, “Son of a Bitch…take command here Frank,” Aaron ordered as he pulled a massive amount of power from the desk console causing it to short out as he ported his precious one to the Clan Med Bay and ran to an empty bio-tube and slid him inside.



Light headed and all of a sudden dizzy, Aaron finally noticed all the blood, catching the edge of the console so he did not fall, he grabbed the sensors and stuck them to Pat as quickly as his shaking hands could, it took three attempts to place the breathing tube in Pat before he hooked up the ventilator and hit the cover so hard it shattered over the emergency cycle button activating it and embedding plastic into his hand.



Falling to the floor from blood loss and the end of his adrenalin rush, Aaron crawled over to one of the bio-tubes and pulled himself up after pressing a hidden panel on the underside dropping the bio-tube to floor level, after it stopped moving he pulled himself up to the edge, crawling into the tube as he lost consciousness.



Having been activated in emergency protocol mode the bio-tube slowly dropped the inside floor eighteen inches causing Aaron to fully tumble inside as the lid sealed and the regen fluid rushed in. computer control initiated protocols not known to Aaron took control as nanites flooded the regen fluid dissolving his clothing and the servo flexed as the computer took control and started to apply the IV cuff.




Finally, Kenny thought, as he walked into the Hall, the tests were over and he could get something to eat. Skipping lunch to finish the tests was not sounding like a good idea right now, as his stomach rumbled loudly again as he walked towards the kitchen. Stopping and looking around, what was that he thought, not seeing anything he started his trek again only to see the flash of red out of the corner of his eye again. This is silly he thought to himself, as he frowned, staring towards the corner he saw it clearly this time a red flash of light coming from the med bay, curious, he walked over that way and saw it again, it reminded him of one of those... Running now, as he realized the flashing reminded him of those light bars on cop cars, he skidded across the med bay floor and landed on his butt as he hit a slick spot, picking himself up off the floor, he froze in fright as he saw the blood on his hands. Thinking he had hurt himself pretty bad, he jerked his head around looking at his body and noticed right away all the blood on the floor.



Bloody hands forgotten, he carefully walked through the blood and gazed into the first bio-tube and saw Pat there which frightened him and glancing over at the other one he screamed in fright when he saw Aaron, all the blood was coming from Aaron.



“NO…No…NO…” Kenny started to hyperventilate, as he tapped the side of his head and activated the communicator, “help me…Help…NO…No...No…”



Xon stood up straight, then tilting his head, “Kenny?” closing his eyes Xon tried to do what he had seen Aaron do many times before and found where Kenny was by thinking about it. Getting an impression of him being in the Med Bay at the Clan Hall, Xon ported off the Sol Station leaving a stunned crew behind who had turned to him after he shouted out Kenny’s name.



Sliding as he appeared in the med bay Xon quickly pulled Kenny close, Once Kenny felt someone hold him, he broke down in tears and started sobbing. Glancing around, Xon raised both eyebrows in concern at the amount of blood on the floor and the two bio-tubes. Concentrating really hard he called out, “All Clan Members return to the Med Bay this is an Emergency. Fred we need you now.”



Tommy was having fun, he was learning a lot of neat things. Grinning as once again the instructors stared at them in shock over one of their questions, his grin faded just as quickly when he noticed Friedrich grab his arm and fall to the floor in pain. Jumping over the table he rushed to Friedrich’s side, “Tell me…tell me what you see!”



“Aaron’s…been shot, He’s taking out the attackers but…but he does not realize he’s been shot,” Friedrich panted in pain and stumbled over the words trying to tell Tommy what he saw. A minute later as he felt Tommy slap him to get his attention he felt the pain go away, so whatever happened it was either too late or going to be okay, he decided to keep telling himself that and maybe he would believe it. He was just getting up to a sitting position when Tommy stiffened as he heard a pathed message and ported out.



Holding a sobbing Kenny, Xon felt several people appear near them and looking over his shoulder he felt relief as he saw Fred appear behind him and rush into the room.




“So you don’t have any idea either? This is worrying grandmother, something’s wrong, I can feel it, the Asclepius would not submerge like that with helicopters on the landing pad unless things have gone horribly wrong.” Edward sighed into the phone as he looked at the site foreman. Hearing screams from outside, “Hold one moment grandmother, something is happening.” Placing the phone down, Edward moved to the window and saw that the Asclepius was starting to rise out of the water, rushing back to the phone, “Grandmother the Asclepius is starting to surface, I shall call you back shortly as soon as I know what is going on…yes, I agree…alright if you haven’t heard from me in half an hour go ahead.” Hanging up the phone, Edward rushed outside Thomas at his heels as he ran across the docks.



Waiting impatiently for the door to the triage deck to open, Edward tried to think of things that could have caused the Asclepius to submerge, not thinking of anything that would have him submerging for a short period of time, he squeezed through the door as it opened and stopped and stared, “Bloody Hell.”



Taking in the frightened people being worked on and the group of Marines with weapons pointed to a group of people grouped on the floor with their arms tied behind their backs, Edward got a cold chill up and down his spine, as if someone had taken ice and dropped it down his shirt. Being careful of the nervous Marines, he slowly walked into the room and looked around, “What the Bloody Hell happened here and where is Aaron?”



 “Aaron left with Pat. Though one of these scumbags shot Aaron, I don’t know how bad it is, but there is a lot of blood behind the desk,” Frank told him as he motioned for the Marines to lower their weapons, he recognized Edward from all the time he spent on the Island and with the Clan.



Upset and trying to come to grips with what he had just heard, Edward walked over to the desk and looked behind it and saw all the blood on the floor, pale and shaken, he looked over at Thomas before walking to the open door to the bio-bed section and asking, “What happened here today, who are those people and…and…bullocks,” Edward sat down on the edge of one of the beds.



“The blighter shaking in his boots behind the desk came on board this morning right after morning rounds your highness,” William walked in, “he and his goons landed in those three choppers that were on the landing pads and he barged into the conference room flashing his id as if it was a badge and proclaimed that health services had sent him over to take charge.”



“His goons kept us prisoner on the treatment decks as he moved on, even his Majesty's residents were kept under guard and when they prepared to leave those despicable men threatened to shoot the children if they transported out,” William sighed as he stared at the suffering patients in the room.



“Commander, why aren’t you doing something to help these people, some of them don’t look too good,” Edward asked as he finally glanced around the room.



“We can’t. The whole system is locked down, security protocols don’t you know, in the event of a hostile takeover, the systems lock down and for all I know melts down into puddles of goo, those still in the bio-tubes are being treated just fine, but the residents warned me that unless Aaron logs in and overrides the self destruct order, they will destroy themselves as soon as the patient is released.” William patted Edward's leg to get his attention, “Can you contact his Majesty and ask him to pop over and unlock the system, then maybe his residents will pop back also and we can treat those poor souls huddled over there.



Shaking his head sadly, Edward sighed, “I wish that was possible, Aaron was shot, or at least that is what they told me when I came aboard.” Standing up with a lost look on his face, Edward started for the triage deck, “let me see if I can get someone to take the patients to the trauma center on Altair minor, at least.”



Stopping next to one of the Marine sentries, Edward got his attention, “Can I ask that…can we get those sick people to Altair Minor before the kids end up dying, they don’t look too good right now.”



Frank, hearing the request, moved over and looked in the room, “I think that could be arranged, I’ll have a couple of the sentries take them over as soon as we figure out what to do with all the prisoners.”



Blinking, Edward tilted his head, “Do with them? Whatever do you mean? Kill them and be done with it.” He told him, confused, before moving closer to the desk and pointing to the plasma screen, “Can we contact my grandmother with this equipment, I need to update her on what we’ve found out and make arrangements to take into custody everyone from the health services department until you lot can scan their minds.”



“Afraid not, when his Majesty ported out with Pat he pulled so much power, so fast it overloaded the circuits frying half of them,” the Marine Sergeant told him, apologizing for not being able to help.



“I see, Edward replied emotionlessly, all he could think of was someone had shot Aaron, he needed to find out what was going on, looking at the head of his team, eyes dead, no expression on his face he stared at his security officer,  “Thomas hand me your service pistol.”



Thomas stared at Edward, “Excuse me, what did you just say?”



Staring at Thomas intently, “I said hand over your service pistol,” Edward was starting to feel something finally and it was anger built on top of fear of losing Aaron.



“Edward, you know I can’t do that…” Thomas started before Edward glaring at him interrupted him.



“Leftenant Thomas Jones, this was not a request, but a direct order from the Prince of Wales, Heir to the Throne, and you will obey or be taken into custody, SIR!” Edward stepped forward to punctuate his words.



Gulping at the rage in those eyes, Thomas slowly pulled his pistol out of its holster and handed it over, under the watchful eyes of the Marine Sergeant.



Taking the gun, Edward glanced down before pushing the small lever that would disengage the safety, walking over to the prisoner closest to them, he held the gun at his side, “I want answers. Let us start with who shot Aaron shall we?”



“Torrey Bastard! I not be telling ya anything.” The man spat at Edward who didn’t even flinch as the spit hit his leg.



Quickly pointing the gun at the man’s head, Edward pulled the trigger, “Wrong answer.” Glancing down at the man on the floor as he moved over to the next prisoner who was babbling something about his rights and he couldn’t do this after all it was England. “It seems you miscalculated just a tad. This is an embassy, and as such Alteran soil, and the punishment for what you lot did is death, I have no problem with performing the sentence. Now would you like a chance to answer the question, which one of you shot Aaron?” he asked as he raised the pistol and aimed.



Looking around frantically for someone to come to his aid, he cried out, “I wasn’t even here, me mates an I were upstairs guarding the medics, ask the bloke on the ground with the broken arms.”



Placing the barrel of the gun against the man’s head, Edward looked down at the man on the ground moaning in pain, “I’ll be right back, I think we might have more questions for you in a moment,” Edward pushed the man backwards with the still warm barrel if his gun and stepped over to one of the slightly moaning guards on the floor. Kicking the man’s leg to get his attention, “I want to know who shot Aaron and you’re going to tell me.”



“Go to hell,” the man was defiant in his pain as he glared at Edward.



Nodding his head, Edward glanced over to the man sobbing on his knees before lifting the gun and shooting the man in the head, “Once again, not the answer I was looking for.”



“Jesus, Mary and Joseph…Edward, don’t do this,” Thomas pleaded for him to see reason.



“Well, since I’m not a telepath I have to get the answers the old fashioned way,” Edward told him as the rage in him at almost losing the future father of his son was still in control.



Pointing the gun at the next man on the floor Edward stared at him in curiosity as he blubbered about being in pain.



Frank, hearing Edward's thoughts and feeling the rage, glanced at the Marines and noticed that most of them were satisfied and horrified at the same time, stepping between Edward and the man on the floor, Frank spoke carefully and slowly, “Your ordeal is over Edward, I will read their minds for you, so you don’t have this on your conscious, torture is not what Aaron would want you to do, even he does not torture people, this needs to be about justice not vengeance?”



Edward just stepped to the next one over so he would not hit the officer raised his gun again and stopped and listened as a plea was put forth.



“You're right Edward, under Alteran law all of them will be put to death. After telepathic scans confirm their actions and we get the names of all involved, they will be put to death. So even if the shooter is still alive, he won’t be for long,” Frank pleaded with Edward as he held out his hand for the gun. “You should not have to do this, and Aaron is not here right now to help you mentally. To make sure you will be okay with what you had to do, you’ve been around the Clan enough to know they are ruthless when needed, but above all, JUSTICE must be served.”



Sighing only slightly as Edward turned to face him, though the gun was still pointed at the prisoner on the floor, Frank screamed for Colin, the only shrink he knew and trusted. “COLIN I need you on the Asclepius right now.”



Seeing a dripping wet Colin appear behind Edward, Frank tried once more, “Justice…Edward, justice is what the Clan stands for, not vengeance, leave them to me, I can promise you they will stand trial for what happened today.”



Edward stared at the officer who was pleading with him and thought things through, lowering the pistol he heard sighs of relief from behind him and sensed a sudden lunge towards him from one side and brought the pistol up in time to see one of the prisoners get hit upside the head in mid lunge. Reason overruled rage as he stepped back, “He seems awful eager to be shot, doesn’t he?” Edward told Frank as he handed the pistol over.



Colin waited until Frank had a good hold of the pistol before moving close, “Edward, let me help make sure you will not have any problems from this, let me help you.” He asked softly as he moved forward, making sure he radiated he was not a threat.




Editors section:





RadioRanchers Musings: Do you think it is possible that Edward is a bit more than miffed? Could he be slightly agitated or unhappy, or even a trifle distraught. I can't say for sure, but I think there is a slight possibility that he is not in a very good mood at the moment. I wonder how Aaron is doing. I sure hope he will be alright. Is there something about being a political hack that makes them a total idiot and makes them do such stupid things?


 Just because they have some kind of political hack job doesn't mean they have the right to take over a ship that is there to save lives and keep it from doing so.

Darryl AKA The Radio Rancher