Louisa paled, speechless, hands trembling.
‘Come we cannot stay here, we will need to find a safe place,’
‘Come with me,’ Louisa said sinking deeper into the weeds returning the pool that collected in front of the cave, several waterfalls washed against the rock face and the charcoaled wreckage.
Climbing onto the slippery rock surface her clothes dripped as she shivered and chattered.
‘Louisa,’ Systea said as her hand hovered over her wet clothes. Water flowed from her clothes and trickled away into the water pool.
‘Thanks,’ Louisa said as she stroked her bone dry clothes. She tracked herself round the wreckage and entered a warm ambient environment. The fire in the corner had sizzled down to mere ashes that glowed red. Taking some wreckage she feed the ashes and blew, reviving the flicks yellow and orange, flames returned to life.
‘Come rest yourselves, I’ll open some of these cans, so we can have something to eat,’ Louisa said waving her guests in.
Systea and her two other companions, knelt beside the dancing flames and smiled towards Louisa, inspecting the cave. Their sights roamed the walls of cans, and rescued materials.
‘You have set yourself up well, this shall last you a while.’
‘Luck was on my side when I found the food,’ Louisa said stabbing a can with a sharp piece of wreckage. ‘Now care to tell me who and what you are, you are no member of the Institute of Planets,’
‘We are not part of the Institute of Planets, but we are part of another alliance one that acts as guardians for...not so advance planets. We observe where tensions are amassing. This is why we have been sent here, to enlighten ourselves as to the mass of warships only a few light years away.’
‘You act as guardians?’ Louisa asked with a raised eyebrow.
‘Yes, we refer our kind as Dovians, as you know I’m Systea, and this is Nevis and Mantine,’ waves of a hand came from the individuals as introduced.
‘And since meeting you Louisa, we understand that this matter needs to be brought to the attention of the Federation. The Emparians have threatened peace within the universe. I shall leave you, Louisa, with Mantine and Nevis, whilst I report our findings. Perhaps you guys could teach Louisa a thing or two, we know that the humans possess such abilities,’ Systea said as her body faded into a glowing orb of a great yellow light that hovered for a moment and then shot of through the waterfall and out of eyeshot.
Louisa gaped, fixated to where Systea had stood.
Two tins floated straight into Nevis’ hands. ‘How hungry are you Louisa?’
‘huh..umm,’ Louisa said as she watched Mantinea hovered his hands over some floating wreckage - remoulding itself into cooking pans.
‘How...how?’ Louisa asked blinking.
‘Telekinetic Louisa, and with the right motivation, belief, willingness to learn and determination. Anyone could harness such powers. Even you Louisa,’ Mantine said and emptied the contents of a tin into the make shift pan.
’Me? choking on a dry laugh. ‘Systea mentioned Emparians, who and what are they?’
‘Joive and his two guards are not Askans, but Emparians like us they have telekinetic and telepathic abilities that allows them to impersonate any species. Their civilisation is an Empire, that has developed through conquest. They possess greater powers than us, any threat; they destroy,’ Mantine said with a sigh.
‘They see me as a threat...you sure they are an intelligent species?’ Louisa asked shaking her head.
‘Joive and his companions do not see you as a threat; rather they see the alliance that your species have with the Ascorts as a greater threat to their plans. We heard that the Ascorts intervened when the Emparians used one of their fleets to attack the prison ship.’
‘And who are these Ascorts?’ Louisa asked.
‘A species that a government of your world formed an alliance with.’
‘Huh?’ Louisa mouthed as she pulled a confused face. ‘An alliance? This is the first time I have heard of an alliance between Earth and another world.’
‘Your governments are very secretive then. I believe an alliance was formed after one of their spacecrafts crashed landed on Earth’s soil,’ Nevis said glancing towards Mantine.
‘The crash site is now a military base in the middle of some dessert,’ Mantine said removing a cooking pan, steam and smoke filled the cave.
‘How do you know all this about Earth?’ Louisa asked frustration resting in her eyebrows. How can other species that I have not even heard of know more about Earth than me!
‘We too have an alliance with the Ascorts,’ Nevis said smiling as he took an empty can and filled it with food, whilst Mantine formed folks out of another piece of wreckage resting on a wall.
‘A military base in the middle of a dessert...Area 51!’ Louisa said with disbelief.
‘Oh, so you do know about the alliance?’ Nevis asked looking confused as he gave her a can filled with some form of stew, bulky vegetables piled up, as steam escaped.
‘But Area 51 is just speculations and rumours. The base exists, but not on maps and its existence is denied by the American government.’ Louisa replied cooling the food. ‘As for the alliance with another species...well that is the first I have heard of it, even if a space craft did crash land. Why would we have an alliance? Out of all the species to choose from - why us?’
‘Well somehow, you gained their alliance and Ascorts rarely form alliances. We Dovians, have only recently agreed an alliance with them,’ Mantine said feeding the fire with foam. Nevis walked outside to keep watch of the surrounding area.
’We’re not special...believe me we are probably the worst species to be allied with. Louisa said thinking back to her interview before the trial. ‘Why have they not formed alliances with others - more their equal?’
‘We do not know.. they have preferred to keep their solitude company. They do not need to learn from others - they possess powerful technology beyond our knowledge beyond the Emparians. Their civilisation exceeds any other that are members to the Federation. The Federation actually had to approach the Ascorts on several occasions, to persuade them to join us. So, when we discovered that your planet had an alliance – many were shocked, in much the same way you are.’
‘But why would they want an alliance with us? What would they gain?’
‘We would love to know those answers, like you. Before they joined the Federation of Planets – they worked as an independent unit to monitor the progress or activities of other species, and carried out similar work to what the Federation did. This was why they were so keen that the Ascorts became members of the Federation.’
’Well aren’t we lucky humans, to have such a powerful alliance, shame this is the root cause to my troubles here, I’ll be dead in no time if these ‘Emparians,’ have their way. And then what would happen? I don’t see why the Ascorts would be concerned over one mere human going missing,′ Louisa said.
‘Well for whatever reason they have, they are watching the events with the Institute of Planets...It seems they have their own agenda here like the Emparians. And they seem to be keen to intervene on your behalf. They must have a ship stationed near to the Institute of Planets. If we could get you to their ship, you would escape the Emparians, and be able to return home.’ Mantine said creating a make shift bed for himself with Nevis doing the same.
‘If I am such a threat to the Emparian plans, why don’t they just send me home?’ Louisa asked turning over to face Nevis and Mantine.
‘Well considering the Ascorts are watching, if the Institute of Planets are responsible for your murder. The Emparians would expect no intervention from the Ascorts, since their own treaty with humans would have been attacked by those in most need of the Ascorts help. That would be my the line of thinking,’ Nevis replied resting himself on his bed watching the ashes nearby, spit and glow red.
The night drew in and a sense of security and warmth lasted the night. Before long, dawn approached with light entering the cave in every crevasse that was available and the sound of scuffling echoed within the cave. Turning on to her side as she sat up she saw Nevis and Mantine clearing the area where they had slept.
‘Did you sleep well?’ Nevis asked, sweeping the remains of the fire to form a mound of ashes.
‘Ummm,’ Louisa nodded whilst she yawned and stretched her body, ‘the fire hasn’t died out has it?’ Louisa asked still drowsy with sleep.
‘Yes, but you needn’t worry about it,’
Nevis nodded, and smiled ‘you’re going to focus on your thoughts, watch,’ Mantine said and a blaze sparked to life right in front of her in midair. ‘Now we won’t expect you to create a fire in midair, but focus on the ashes and place some debris down.’
‘But,’ Louisa said looking to the collection of ashes.
‘By the time we come back we want to see a fire big enough to cook our next meal.’ Mantine said smiling as he followed Nevis and disappeared into the flowing water.
‘How?’ Louisa asked mystified.
‘Concentrate, and focus,’ Nevis echoed in her mind.
Grabbing a handful of foam, Louisa ripped it to shreds, and loosened the fibres to that of a cotton wool texture. Looking round there was no tools that she could use to create a fire manually, well none within the cave and considering her life was in danger if discovered outside she laid herself onto the cold rock floor and brought herself up onto her arms and stared into the materials that sat before her. Concentrate? On what? Build a picture of flames in my mind or focus on some tension to ...oh I don’t know.
‘Hey you do not learn by resting, come Louisa, focus. What do you want to have? Fire... so what comes to mind when you think of fire? Heat, light, or perhaps security?’ Nevis said coming to her level, and blowing the ashes away. Mantine just smiled as he rested some fresh fruit to one side.
‘Heat I guess,’
‘Good, so how can you transfer that to thoughts in your mind?’
‘I don’t know,’
’What emotions do you have when you think of fire? Nevis asked.
‘I don’t know, come on, can’t you use your powers?’
‘Nope, we are relying on you to find an emotion, to use and set alight this inviting material.’ Mantine said picking up a handful of the foam.
A groan came from Louisa,
‘We’ll head out again when we come back we want to see a fire, now you need an emotion/ memory powerful enough to combust this material.’
‘What,’ Louisa protested and left alone again.
‘Make sure you have a fire burning when we come back,’
‘And exactly how am I meant to do that!’ Louisa kicked the material prepared for burning. Storming from one side to the next her temper built, due to the impossible task. Kicking loose stones around, she collapsed and brought her legs up where a tears began to run down her cheeks.
‘What’s’ all this?′ Nevis said entering the cave with a gentle smile. He brought himself to Louisa’s level.
‘It’s impossible to light a fire with no tool to help me,’
‘Louisa, you are a human, that uses a tiny proportion of your brain. Don’t you think it’s time to make use of your other abilities?’ Mantine asked.
‘Don’t try to be smart you know as well as me, that I have no abilities like either of you, I’m going to be stuck here. I’ll never to go back home.’
‘Well if you have that line of thinking then ... But, come on we have got some fresh fish, fruit and vegetables to cook. And we both want you to create a fire for us, now let’s start on focusing on your target the mound of material for a fire to burn. Now I tend to use memories, to help me use my abilities, but Nevis focuses more on emotions to help focus his abilities. Now choose something that you can focus on.’
‘Like what? I have nothing to focus on.’
‘Really... so after being taken, no abducted from your home planet for research, and framed for murder, so a race can hopefully carry out an invasion with no trouble from the Ascorts, and sacrifice your life for their own end. You feel nothing? Are you not a bit angry?’
‘Yes, but how? I do not have your abilities!’
‘Louisa back home, have there been any reports of people doing strange thing - not possible for a human - Supernatural activities?’
‘A few humans can bend a spoon. As for supernatural activities I guess I could tell you a few ghost stories.’
‘What are ghosts?’
‘Those of us that have not moved onto the next world,’
‘We -well some of us believe there is life after death, but a few have unfinished business and so do not cross over.’
‘So what stuff do they do?’
‘Oh move objects, scare people, I don’t know, I’ve never seen a ghost,’
‘Well your ghosts have learnt how to access their core powers, all you need to do is gain access to them as well.’
‘Nothing is impossible,’ Nevis said grabbing Louisa’s hand ’The amount of untapped energy you have Louisa, no wonder why the Ascorts are so interested in your species.
Mantine hovered a hand over Louisa’s a triumphant smile appeared. ‘I certainly think the Ascorts know something we don’t. You’ll have to find your core from which your abilities derives whether it be emotion, memories, senses whatever works for you. Once you have awakened them I sense even the Emparians may have difficulty in reigning them’.
‘Now we’ll start preparing the food, You create the fire.’
Louisa throw herself onto the dirt ridden floor and took a handful of foam where she continued to pull it apart. Memories of her family and home flooded into her mind. Anger took over and she threw the foam to the floor.
‘Come on Louisa,’ Nevis said placing her hands within his ‘focus on the emotions, I can sense the anger you have for this situation, let’s try this together direct your thoughts on fire Louisa.’
‘I can’t!’ Louisa said.
At once Mantine eyes glowed a yellow colour together with his hands.
‘Mantine you cannot link with her, she cannot learn like us,’
‘We might as well try, we both can sense her abilities - they just need unlocking.’ Nevis said and slammed his right hand onto Louisa’s chest and his left onto her head.
Shocked, Louisa felt the heated touch of Nevis’ hands that spread throughout her body, waking up every nerve cell that led to a domino effect. An electrical current spilled out reaching the four extremities of her body, her own fingers glowed for a moment. Nevis then gripped her hands, pins and needles travelled throughout.
Memories of the recent events flooded her mind and the anger that came sent the pins and needles into overdrive; a flame soon licked her hands and left a burning sensation.
‘Good,’ Nevis said with a mass of flames growing, whilst Mantine sat smiling shaking his face placing three fish within the flames. ‘Now that Nevis has helped you discover your core powers. You shall need to practice to strengthen and develop these powers. You may gain some helpful skills that may be beneficial to you and us when we try to get of this moon.’ Mantine continued as he grounded herbs and added them to the fresh water.
‘Get off?’ Louisa asked still very aware of the pins and needles sensation across her entire body. A force that got stronger between her hands as she concentrated on this invisible power.
‘Yes, you will be discovered if you stay here, the Emparians will never rest until they discover you alive or dead. They will start scanning for human DNA, if they have not started to do so already. No, I’d say we have a day or so, before they will trace us here. Maybe even less time, which is why this must be our last meal on this moon. We shall set off into the night when the search parties have settled for the night.’
‘But there will be search parties during the night,’ Louisa said.
‘Yes, but reduced numbers, and based around the camp, but we shall have the cover of night to aid our escape.’
‘Escape? How do you plan to escape – surely you would need a ship,’
Nevis nodded and dished out a fish onto three plates and set a salad to the side washed with wild vinaigrette of herbs and spices. ‘Now eat up we have a long journey ahead of us, one that may be jarred by the Emparians.’
Butterflies swarmed Louisa’s stomach, as she stared at Nevis and Mantine clearing the cave to its original state, tipping the cans of food in the pool of water that floated away and towards the distant flares coming from the make shift base, occasionally balls of light would float up and disappear within the midnight sky.
‘That’s the way out of here,’ Nevis said gathering Louisa within an arm of comfort, as the three stared at the blanket of stars above them.