Journal Entry 242 / 01028
Seren, Narquel 31, 01028
Chatenni fought off the boredom for as long as he could, but he always
found atmospheric travel like this boring and sometimes nauseating. He
hated flying. He wanted to talk to someone, but the only person on the
team he knew well enough to talk to was someone he had spent more than
enough time talking to already. He decided to go up front.
The pilot was a Satryl like himself, a centauroid feline. She had
leopard-like rosettes coloring her back and a blue jacket over her torso.
Chatenni noticed a cold-weather skirt and taurid boots hung carefully
in the pilot's stow behind her chair. She lay on a bench, her hands
holding the controls loosely, her eyes fixated out the windows. She
had a cord running into the back of her head. It descended in a coil
to a plug in the front panel. "Hi," she said, turning to look at him,
her eyes coming back from a long way away. "You're the team lead, right?"
"Mmm-hmm," he agreed. "Chatenni."
"Rima Godoroff. Rima is better than G'Rima." She looked back out the
window. "It doesn't bother you, does it?" She pointed to the cord. "It
bothers some people that I've still got a fybop but it works for me."
"It doesn't bother me," Chatenni lied. In truth, he knew lots of people
with cerebral modifications. It was thought of as just another part of
the evolution of the species. But few had wire connections; most people
used radio or the gravitic radio systems that were now available. While
fiber optic systems were those that had them swore that they were
better than the radio systems, but the apparent intimacy of mind and
machine bothered many people. It was a strange reaction; it was okay
to be a cyborg, so long as you didn't look like one. "So, you like this
kind of flying?"
"Beats doing shuttle work on one of the colonies. Or, worse, Earth." She
seemed to shiver. "So you like this groundbreaking stuff, huh? Must
be quite the thrill to get to dig up something techie like this."
"It beats interstellar space." He looked out the window. From this high
up, he could almost imagine that the world below all that cloud cover
was clean and ready for him to walk on without protective gear. But he
knew that underneath it was still a frozen hellhole.
"Hey, if we ever found anything in interstellar space, like a ruined
starship from some earlier civilization, would you be the ones to
get the call?"
"I don't know," Chatenni replied. "I don't think so. I think we'd just
get the artifacts and logs and we'd be expected to write papers on it
until the stars go out."
She laughed. "You have such great jobs."
"What about you? This isn't a great job?"
"It's what I like to do and do well enough. But your job's got so much,
y'know, flow. So, what are you doing at the site?"
"Well, it's a medium-sized city with both a school and a military base
nearby. That makes it an ideal study subject for this kind of situation.
We wouldn't want their largest city because large cities tend to
have special characteristics. This city that we're going to has little
industrial area, but it apparently has some food distribution centers. So
we'll learn a lot from it, about its advanced education, it's military,
and its population management."
"You sound like you enjoy that kind of stuff."
"That's why I do this," he said quietly. "You're staying with us, right?"
She nodded. "On this kind of thing we always supply a backup. We don't
trust the Sdisk system as much as we used to. Not after llerkin. That's
also why I have this." She pointed to the cable. "Less possibility of
Chatenni took the bench opposite her and watched the sky slide by. "So,"
she said, "Are you seeing anyone?"
"No." Even as he said it he wondered why she had asked.
"Got a roommate already?"
"You're being very forward."
"It's very cold down there," she said. "All I want is a warm body,
not a boyfriend."
"I suppose I can do that." He grinned. Sharing a room was second nature
to a student. If they couldn't get along, they'd know soon enough
and find other arrangements,
"Great. I don't snore."
"Vaqi, T'roal, you take the military base. This is prelim only, take two
seccors. Joan, Tytka, you get the school. Same measures. Aalis, you and
Styx take the warehouses. Os and I will be hitting the bureaucracy."
"What can I do?" asked the one person who was not a member of his team.
"Not a whole lot. If the day is clear it would be useful if you could
do a low magnetometer sweep of the area."
"You mean, a grid pattern search?"
"Are you up for it?"
She nodded. "I got nothing better to do," she sighed. "Besides, being
in the air means that I'll get to one of you quicker if you get
yourself into the pudding."
"I like her," Tytka said. "Can we keep her?"
"You're stuck with me as long as you decide to stay here." She
"Can you give our a ride to the military base? It's a bit out
"Then let's get going."
Chatenni wandered through what was apparently not the city's ritualistic
main hall but the actual heart of bureaucratic power. He was finding
the place as typically bewildering as any he had ever found, and those
others had been working examples, not archaeological ruins. One thing
that puzzled him was the apparent lack of a city library. He had looked
for references and found none. They had found libraries in many of the
towns near Besnial, but none so far here.
He heard a beep and picked up his gradio. "Chatenni." Os looked up at
the start of the conversation.
"It's Rima. Did you do a deep magnetometer scan of this place before
"No, but there's a preliminary one from the satellite data."
"I know. I checked it. It doesn't match what I found."
That made Chatenni look up. "What?"
"I think you've got working machinery down here."
"Looks like a about halfway between the military complex and the
Chatenni felt a chill run down his spine. It could be nothing. Or it
could mean a project as big as digging out the Forcassa bunker. "When
the teams reconvene at the tent tonight, I want the data ready for
in-depth analysis. Could you do me a deep mass analysis as well? Just
"Will do, sexy. Bye."
Chatenni looked querulously at the communicator even as it made an audible
click to signify the end of a connection. Os stifled a mustelid grin. "I
think she likes you."
"She's nice enough," Chatenni said. "Let's get back to work."
That evening they assembled in the main chamber of the heated tent.
Chatenni looked at the maps displayed on the big screen set up in one
corner and wondered what they had found. It didn't look good. The mass
analysis chart showed that there was something artificial buried under the
farm. Something large and Ritan-made. He smiled even as he realized that
he had instantly though "Ritan" rather than the colloquial "man made,"
a term used even by many Pendorians. He had wanted a mainstream, ordinary
project with mainstream, ordinary tasks. Instead, he had just stumbled on
a facility that was still operating after all these centuries. The world
that had looked like a barren wasteland without distinguishing features
on the initial reports had become a massive undertaking without an end
"Well," he sighed. "I have bad news. We're going to have the military
investigation team from Heeram dropped on our heads. I'm still in charge,
but there's going to be a safety crew from Command looking over our
shoulders at every second."
"Is that necessary?" Vaqi asked.
Chatenni laughed. "It's preferable to the alternative. I don't want to
do this myself."
"I can't believe how big it is. It must be their main military facility."
Rima looked closely at the images she had rendered just a few hours ago.
"You wouldn't know it from the airbase. It's got such a small runway."
Tytka pointed to the map. Chatenni could see that her enthusiasm was
growing even as his slowly ebbed away. He had no stomach for this kind
of complexity. He liked the slow, careful disassembly of ancient ruins;
the patient cataloguing, the delicate handling. This was going to be
more the kind of operation done with bulldozers and sonar.
Chatenni sighed. "Okay. Co and his people are going to be here tomorrow.
Let's all try to got a decent night's sleep." He turned off the main
Without grumbling, his collection of mainly new students headed to their
"You handle them pretty well," his new roommate said as he collapsed
onto the inflated floor mattress back in his own assigned room.
"Thanks," he said. "I never wanted to be a leader. That's just what
happens when you became a professor's favorite student. You did pretty
well yourself," he commented. "Congratulations on your discovery."
"The machines did all the work." She stripped off the tight, grey,
military-style t-shirt she wore and tossed it aside and joined him on
the mattress. She stretched out her full length, her legs high in the
air as she groaned aloud with relief. "I love flying, but I'm not too
sure about being confined in an aerodyne for the whole day."
He chuckled and tried not to look too closely. He found himself
wondering if being a "warm body" meant anything more than just that;
it was actually rather cold in the tent even with the heating. He would
have much preferred to rehabilitate a standing building than use one of
these thin-skinned tents, but they hadn't had time to locate one sturdy
enough for that job.
Still, he liked looking at her. She was quite a lovely creature in her own
way. He found the small plug on the back of her head not that disturbing
after all, now that it was covered with a protective shield the color
of her fur. She was a little heavy, one of the two common syndromes of
those who spent too much time hooked to their machine directly, but he
actually found it pleasant to look at. Not at all the prototypical solid
body Pendorians, even he, managed to have. "Hey, Rima?"
"When you said you needed a roommate, did you want anything else?"
She rolled over. "Did you want me to want something else?"
"No, not really," he said. "Just curious."
"Me too. About you."
He leaned forward a little bit. "This curious?"
"That curious," she replied as her muzzle met his. She kissed well and to
Chatenni's surprise they spent a lot of time doing just that-- kissing.
She seemed to enjoy just that little bit of touching, although she had one
free hand and kept running it up and down his back as they made out. Her
breath was sweet; she took care of her teeth. An uncommon event in an
age of perfectly painless medical care.
The simple pleasure she gave him made him shiver. Her arms pulled their
torsos closer together. Both struggled to move under the heavy blankets,
but soon they were in a tighter embrace. She moaned softly as mouths
nipped at cheeks, tongues licked at ears, and hands roamed over bodies
that spent too much time recently trapped in environment suits. Chatenni
fert his heart beating faster even as her lower paws, claws retracted,
padded at his torso, suggesting play in such a way that he couldn't
"Wow," he gasped.
"Yeah," she said. "Thanks for not being a stuck valve, Chatenni."
He had heard that phrase before. "Did you talk to Shera?"
"She says that. Stuck valve.'"
"She also said I shouldn't bother trying. Something about you being
Chatenni laughed. "Not asexual. Choosy. I just don't get excited by
"So I'm not ordinary?" Rima asked.
"No," Chatenni said. "You're extraordinary. At least, that's my current
She grinned and resumed her assault on his senses, her hands rubbing
against the grain of his fur, her mouth nuzzling his neck and shoulders.
Her rear paws pressed against his belly and he felt her probing around. He
opened his legs slightly to let her in and find what she was clearly
looking for. Paws found his erection. She giggled. "My, is that what I
think it is?"
"It might be."
"Let me see," she said, tossing aside the blankets to make maneuvering
easier. The cool blast of air made Chatenni's fur rise. She turned over
and looked down between his thighs, then closed in for a closer look.
"You could always find out for yourself if it is."
"I could, couldn't I?" she replied. She licked the length of his cock
from base to tip. A warmth spread out from his groin throughout his body
and he moaned. "It is tasty," she said with a grin.
"You don't have to stop!" Chatenni gasped.
"I didn't plan on it." She opened her mouth and took his cock into
her mouth. She couldn't all of it and he hadn't expected her
to. But what she was doing was unbelievable. He could actually feel each
individual swipe of her tongue across his cock, and he could feel her
sucking. It was like she was actually trying to suck his cock into being
bigger and harder. He thought it was as hard as it could possibly get.
What she was doing was so good it actually almost hurt. But the pleasure
arcing through his body was telling him to take more.
She stopped. He looked down to see if anything was wrong. "I tasted a
little something," she said. "If you're getting close, I'd rather you
got inside me, Chatenni."
"Okay," he replied, his head swimming with desire. She again rolled over,
onto her belly, her body stretched out lengthwise until she was taking
up a full three meters or more. Chatenni eased up beside her, then on
top of her, his cock falling easily between her hindquarters. Their
bodies lined up perfectly even as he slid into her without pause.
The slick grasp of her sex around his cock was almost enough to make him
come right there. She had aroused him so much just with her mouth
and now the sweet tunnel of her was almost more than he could bear.
He stretched out atop her, his weight on hers, his muzzle nipping loftly
at her ear.
"Fuck me, Chatenni. Oh, yes." He was already pumping his hips in and
out of her, giving her what she asked for. Her moans increased in volume
even as they found a comfortable rhythm.
He looked down at his hands, where they grasped her torso, held on. His
hands were mauling her without his trying to. She placed her
hands over his not to discourage him but to hold him in place. Her growl
of pleasure came hot and as he slid in and out of her, pounding
her firmly into the bed.
But that solid rhythm proved their undoing; he came with a loud groan,
shooting off inside her, filling her with at least a few day's worth
He panted as he pulled out of her, taking deep breaths as his cock slowly
shrank. The final pull out made him grimace. "Yum," she purred softly
as they turned over in bed together and lay, side-by-side, panting out
the heat they had created. "You are good."
"And you were the best," he sighed, reaching up to lick her cheeks. "Thank
"You wanted more than just a warm body, then," he pointed out.
She laughed. "I guess I did. I might even want more again. Are you
"For the time being. But I have a job to perform."
"So do I," she pointed out. "Don't worry. I'm sure we'll have plenty of
time to practice in the future."
They lay quiet for a time, recovering. "Sleep?" he suggested.
"That sounds like a good idea."
"Lights out, Nix," Chatenni said clearly. The lights dimmed rapidly to
black. "Good night, Rima."
The Journal Entries of Kennet R'yal Shardik, et. al., and Related Tales
are Copyright (c) 1989-2000 Elf Mathieu Sternberg. Distribution limited
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