The iisadsu were falling all around me. If I hadn’t hit them with my blaster Sam was picking them off with his from the mounted turrets on Ma-rye-a. We were all set on stun. I didn’t mind wreaking havoc, but I didn’t want to start an intergalactic incident. I was in for a rescue, not murder.
I ran a zigzagged pattern through the downed bodies jumping over unfurled wings and outstretched appendages.
I was headed toward the water when one caught me by the shoulders and started to lift me up off the ground. I raised my weapon and stunned him in the chest. We both fell about 6 feet. I struggled momentarily below him trying to get through the feathers and the tangle of a being made up of six foot wings.
I glimpsed Attalla, and someone I assumed was Tt’i, break the surface. Attalla looked like he had been pulled through a keyhole backwards. I ran to take him from Tt’i because he obviously needed help to even remain standing. Sam continued to rake the flock of iisadsu.
To my surprise, as soon as I reached Attalla Tt’i’s people all popped to the surface. They were armed with nets and tridents. They started in on the iisadsu that had followed me to the edge of the water. They were not as kind as Sam and I were. They were out for the kill. Before I could get Attalla to shore the shallow waters of the beach were red with the iisadsu’s blood.
“Lean on me,” I comforted Attalla. “It’s just a few yards.”
I wasn’t sure Attalla could see or had heard me. He did not acknowledge my words vocally or mentally. He had a huge open gash on his forehead above his right eye. That whole side of his face was bloody, bruised and swollen. I was sure he couldn’t see out of that eye.
Just as one of the iisadsu dove for us, Attalla stumbled and went down. I thought we were caught until I heard the cry and saw the iisadsu over shoot us and hit the sand in a pile of tangled wings – a trident through his back.
I quickly gathered up Attalla and we made it the last few yards to the ship. Sam manned the entry and took down several more of the enemy before he could get the door closed behind us. Once inside I felt we had a measure of safety. I supported Attalla down the hall to his room and onto the bed. After staunching the blood flowing from his head I got him out of his wet clothes and wrapped him up in warm blankets Carrie had prepared.
The soup and some hot tea appeared in the prep unit at the foot of the bed. I propped Attalla up and tried in vain to spoon soup into him to take the chill off. He was shivering and as far as I could see unconscious. He still had not spoken to me physically or mentally since I grabbed him at the water’s edge.
“Ma-rye-a, please raise the temp a couple of degrees in here,” I said.
“Done,” Ma-rye-a confirmed. “Should I lay in a course for the nearest Mother Ship?”
Mother Ships are the traveling hospital ships of our universe. “Is there one close?”
“Two Q’s,” Ma-rye-a confirmed. “We could be there in eight hours if we jump at the window at Tradepost #89.”
Jumping was not my idea of fun. You could get into a lot of trouble if you didn’t do it right or worse yet, the person before you hadn’t done it right and their derelict ship was floating at the other end of the window just waiting for you to crash into it upon exiting.
I looked down at Attalla. His injuries were way beyond what I could handle. I pulled the covers up higher under his chin.
“Take us out,” I said. “Call me to the bridge before you make the jump. Until then I am going to stay here with Attalla.”