The First Her

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Part 60

The next few days were full of paranoia. Kira was expecting someone to rip Terra away and throw her down a flight of stairs. It would be a difficult feat, though. Considering that Vrox hardly let her out of his sight.

Corzon and his men weren’t allowed to mingle nearby since they weren’t fully trusted yet. They camped in the wilderness. While a part of Kira felt like they were being rude, the greater part of her understood the precautions. Being a leader meant stepping out of your comfort zone, and after all the shit she dealt with Wo’ton, she’d gladly do it to keep everyone safe.

It was day seven since Wo’ton met his demise. Things were settling, but there was still a conversation that needed to happen.

Layla.

She had been hiding in her room, probably because she was afraid of her fate. Of course, Kira wouldn’t allow anything to happen to her. She was only another victim of Wo’ton’s insanity.

“You need to control your expression and your tone, okay? Layla isn’t like Corzon. She is more sensitive, and I don’t want you to scare her.”

“I cannot make any promises,” Vrox said. “She plotted to kill my female and daughter.”

“No, Wo’ton did. And Layla didn’t go through with it because she knew that it wasn’t right. We have to give her credit for that. She chose our daughter over her lover.”

Vrox crossed his arms over his chest, still defensive. “I will try my best.”

“That’s my baby.” She kissed his cheek and checked on her other baby. Terra was once again bouncing with life. After receiving the antidote, the signs of poisoning quickly faded. Kira had been practically bathing her in the stuff. She wasn’t taking any risks.

“Let’s go see Layla now.”

They left Terra with a babysitter and headed out.

“Layla?”

“Oh, hi. Come in.”

Layla looked from Kira to Vrox, but she was mostly intimidated by Vrox. She knew that the most merciful one between them was Kira, who was also Vrox’s tamer.

“Do you mind if I sit?”

Layla smiled thinly. “I mean, this is your home, so…”

“No. This is your room. You are welcome here.” Kira pat the seat beside her. “I just have some questions and I’ll let you rest. We want to wrap everything up so we can begin healing from this disaster.”

“I’ll tell you everything,” Layla promised.

Vrox stood by the door, watching the exchange closely.

“Tell me about this Xulor guy. Is it serious?”

Layla’s eyes melted, and Kira no longer needed her to answer with words.

“Where did you meet him?”

“On a planet called Tulis. I landed on Ezron first, and I ran into a girl called Akane. We were both ripped from Earth survived together for two weeks before getting separated again. These weird-looking aliens took me.” She shuddered. “They were so ugly… with their three eyes, and…” she swallowed.

To distract her, Kira asked, “when does Xulor come in?”

“Tulis is a slave planet. They have sex slaves and gladiators. Xulor was their most prized fighter.”

Kira pursed her lips. She didn’t like the sound of this place and didn’t like that Xulor was their champion. They might come back to reclaim him.

“Did they hurt you? Did you meet any other humans there?”

“No. I was lucky. They were trying to gift me to Xulor, so they programmed his language in my brain. Xulor didn’t want to hurt me. He broke free, and I followed him. He stole his slaver’s ship and flew us to Ezron.”

“Wow… and how long was that flight?”

“A few weeks. We were traveling at ridiculous speeds. I think Tulis is many light years away from Ezron, but they have obviously mastered transportation.”

Kira gave Vrox a worried look. If this species was more technologically advanced than them, they were in for trouble.

Connecting the dots, Layla added, “They’re pretty weak. Physically, I mean. They’re about as strong as human men. Xulor told me he fought hundreds, and they’re nothing compared to Ezronians. We have that advantage over them.”

“Kira, you need to go through this ship,” Vrox said. “You said you did this on Earth, yes? You made ships that flew to space?”

Kira cringed. “Uh… not exactly, baby. NASA isn’t Area 51. I made some parts here and there, but I’m not an aviation engineering expert. I mean, I can try to pull some information off the ship, but if they have clearance codes…”

“They used biometrics for their clearance,” Layla said. “Xulor… um… severed his slaver’s thumb and reprogrammed the ship so he and I are the new administrators.”

“That’s a start,” Kira nodded. “But if this thing has some beacon that will ping Tulis once it goes online…”

“Xulor thought of that already. He destroyed the beacon.”

“I’m starting to like this Xulor guy. When did you get separated?”

“Wo’ton attacked,” she whimpered. “We were happy, and then he found us and took Xulor captive. He said he would kill him if I didn’t do as he said. He wanted to…”

“Okay,” Kira interjected when she saw that the woman was about to pass out. “Breathe.” She rubbed her back.

“I just want him to come back,” Layla cried. “He has already suffered so much. He needs me.”

“We’ll find him. First, we’ll go through that spaceship for clues. Maybe he escaped and left a note for you or something.”

Layla heaved with sobs, because she knew that was wishful thinking.

Kira’s heart shrunk for her. She would be just as devastated if she was separated from Vrox.

“We can start looking tomorrow. Right, Vrox?”

He hesitated. He couldn’t organize a search party with a snap of his fingers. He needed time to plan, and Kira knew that she was asking for too much.

“We will leave tomorrow afternoon,” he grumbled, obviously displeased by the circumstances. He would have to stay up all night to organize such a big expedition.

She smiled at him, because the big guy just earned himself a blowjob.

“How far is the spaceship, Layla? Do you remember?”

“Um… about three days’ walking distance. Xulor’s childhood home was in The Ruins, so he parked it pretty close.”

“We will ride there,” Vrox said. “It will cut down the travel time.”

Kira nodded. “Good. This is good. I’m going to help Vrox prepare. Keep your head up. We’ll be back.”

“Thank you,” Layla said through her tears.

With a final squeeze, Kira followed Vrox outside. He looked troubled, so she slipped her hand into his.

“Are you mad? I’m sorry. I just couldn’t take her sadness. She has waited long enough to be re-united.”

“Of course I am not mad. I am worried. I do not want you and Terra in the wilderness.”

“I know, and I don’t want to leave Lamara when she’s so close to giving birth, but we need to get control of this spaceship situation. We need to find as much as possible about these Tulis assholes.”

Vrox gritted his jaw. He was really upset about taking her out of the safety of the pyramid.

“You, Terra, and Layla will ride in a carriage. We will stop every few hours for Terra’s feeding.”

She nodded, knowing that those terms weren’t negotiable. “Sounds good.”

They dove into preparations. Vrox picked fifty of his most trusted men, including Draekon, Terson, and Rokan. Kyros and the others needed to stay behind to look after the women.

Nebula said goodbye tearfully. She wanted to join, but she had to say behind in case Lamara’s went into labor.

Although they would only be riding for two days max, Vrox packed food to last them a month. He then sealed Layla, Kira, and Terra in a big carriage lined with the finest fur. After asking for the millionth time if they needed anything, he slid the door closed and started leading his men.

The carriage shifted forward, and they took off.

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