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Alien Brethren: Chapter 13: Homecoming of Heroes
Posted By: Alex L (Greek Elite)<yoshi64y@aol.com>
Date: 17 December 2005, 8:09 pm

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Chapter 13: Homecoming of Heroes

Alright, be honest, who thought Chapter 12 was THE END of Alien Brethren? Who did I fool? You guys thought I'd just leave you hanging at Chapter 12, what would be a VERY climactic ending for Alien Brethren. No, I decided to have Alien Brethren come back with avengeance! I hope you're all pumped for this because this Chapter is the start of something new and big for Alien Brethren...

Before I let you read though...I MUST thank all whom read Alien Brethren and are constantly commenting and constantly clinging onto my chapters after every submit. Once again, you are the fuel to this story and as long as you guys are here Alien Brethren should live on...

Blood seeped from a minor gash upon a Sergeant's face. The Marine wiped it off his face as it began to dribble downward into his eye, almost ruining his most important aspect of combat, his vision.

He brought his SRS99C-S2 AM Sniper Rifle scope up to his eye. The back of a ugly Brute's head was perfectly in view. Without hesitation he pulled the trigger. A short fountain of blue blood spurted from the alien's skull as it fell into a heap.

The Sniping Marine slapped in a fresh clip and was startled as he heard the roar of a very angry Brute. Before he could turn to engage, there was a gushing, sickening, yet beautiful sound of searing energy tearing through a tough, hairy hide. The Sergeant turned to see a fallen, gory Brute lying at the feet of a tall, blood drenched, crimson Elite.

The blue blood of the Brute dripped from his armor, helmet, and mandibles. He shook off his soaked arm and sword and with his less drenched arm he wiped off his face. There the two stood, in the half demolished battlegrounds of an Earth street, gushing with Covenant troops and with a loss of resistance.

A pack of Jackals scattered into view while a flock of Buggers began flying into the scene. "I'll get the Jackals, you take out the Buggers," the Sergeant said.

"Baxter…" The Elite snarled, feeling his orders were unfair.

"What, Alei?" Sergeant John Baxter asked.

"Why can't you deal with the Buggers while I get the Jackals?" Alei questioned, plasma and needles soaring over their shoulders as they bickered on the topic at hand.

"Because I said so," Baxter said with a smirk.

"I think a Sniper is more suited for Buggers," Alei argued.

"Paper, rock, scissors?" Baxter asked, holding out his hand to decipher who would take care of which enemy, chaos still brewing in the background.

The Elite sighed, and extended his hand, "Fine."

Both dueled with their fists while Baxter counted, "Once, twice…"

"SHOOT!" Cried out Alei whom instantly raised his Carbine and got a head shot of a Sniper Jackal.

Baxter unloaded four shots on four airborne Buggers and then slapped in a new clip, both turned on their heels, switching off enemies. Alei took out a few more Buggers with his raging Carbine while Baxter unloaded another four rounds on the pack of Jackals. Baxter laughed as his enemies went down swiftly and how he had taken little to no hits. Alei had dropped all of the Buggers in no time and reloaded after his job well done…or what he thought to be a job well done.

He heard the humming of a single Bugger's wings vibrating in his ears and he quickly turned to see one perch on Baxter's shoulder, ready to slit his throat with its jagged claws. Alei quickly dropped his Carbine and grabbed the insect by its wings and pinned it down to the ground. With his hoof crippling the Bugger's body he was able to ignite his Energy Sword and make a quick, lethal incision. Baxter looked over his shoulder and gave a curt nod of thanks to his Alien Brethren.

Baxter turned back to the fray, Alei standing by his side, Sword glowing magnificently in hand. Alei noticed the nice job John had done. A neat pile of Jackals were several feet from them and all that remained was a cowardly Jackal, shield raised.

"Bet you a plasma grenade I can get this one in one shot," Baxter wagered.

Alei chortled and took out a spare grenade, "I'll take that bet, human."

Baxter smiled and raised his rifle. He scoped and aimed at his target with such precision and such delicateness that it could be considered an art. This art only took however about one second and he pulled the trigger. Surprisingly the shot had found an unprotected part of the alien's head. Blood spurted and the last Jackal fell.

Baxter held out his hand, awaiting his reward and felt the Covenant grenade plop into his hand. "Banshee from behind," warned Alei.

Baxter turned immediately to the eerie shrieking of a Covenant Banshee, approaching with speed. As it began engaging with its plasma cannons Baxter readied the plasma grenade and once the Banshee was in throwing range he tossed it into the air. It stuck the Banshee easily, let off a grim hissing and dismembered the once airborne vehicle in a blue explosion.

All was silent for the moment but Baxter's paranoia caused him to spin around and quickly scope out the other end of the street. He quickly lowered his rifle and rubbed his eyes, not being able to comprehend what he was seeing.

"Hailey," Baxter mumbled in shock. Her beauty controlled his thoughts once again. She looked frightened, confused, and alone. She ran towards the Sergeant, teary eyed and quickly embraced him. She rubbed her wet face in his blood stained chest.

"Hailey," Baxter said, embracing her tightly, "Hailey what's wrong?"

She looked up, into his brave yet astounded eyes and spoke in a high pitched, laughable voice, "Baxter? You be sleep talking again? Who Hailey? Me be Kaskut!"

Quickly Baxter's eyes snapped wide open to reality and his dream was shut away in the back of his head. He looked at his surroundings and recalled that he and his crew had taken an Albatross after docking their old Pelican inside a UNSC ship.

On the other side of the Albatross was the muscular, cold blooded Lieutenant, Kyle Woodword. In the center of the Albatross were two living alien tanks, the mighty Tebo Hunter brothers; Ralna Tebo Laku and Kalno Tebo Jamu. The two prodded each other with their giant shields and chattered in their strange, native tongue. Hovering around the giant alien allies was an artifact of one of the Halos; the intellectual yet bothersome 16807 Remorseful Incentive. The monitor began blinking its green light while humming a catchy tune. Off to Baxter's right was Baxter's most trusted. Alei 'Limoto had turned into Baxter's most trusted ally after once being Baxter's most exceptional enemy on Zanzibar.

The Elite was once a loyal and highly regarded member of the Covenant as an Elite Major, but once Alei discovered the truth about Halo and had seen the virtues in mankind (especially the possibilities of alien alliances with humans that was shown through Sergeant Baxter). The crimson Elite was a scarred warrior whom held the values of honor and brethren very highly.

Baxter looked down and met face to face with the most loved and warm hearted of the crew; the loveable Grunt Kaskut. Kaskut was usually a good sidekick and ally when it came to war, but he was an even better mechanic and friend off the battlefront.

"You be awake now Baxter?" Kaskut asked, cocking his cute head at the Sergeant.

"Yes Kaskut," Alei answered on behalf of the groggy Sergeant, "He is awake and was merely dreaming."

"Dreaming about what?" Kaskut asked excitedly.

"About Earth. About fighting. About…" Baxter said, stopping before he said the name of his love. Kaskut waited patiently for Baxter's next input. "About kicking that sorry Jackal's ass with my Sniper Rifle!" Baxter said, egotistically, using that as an alternative to Hailey.

"We already heard your story on how you killed Lib, Sergeant. I don't think we need to hear it again," Woodword said, cracking a smile at Baxter's pride in killing the Jackal. Kaskut crawled off Baxter's lap and took a seat next to the Sergeant as he began to stretch. "So where are we right now?" Baxter asked.

"You'll have to ask the pilot," Woodword said, motioning towards the cockpit of the Albatross. He set down his Rifle next to Kaskut, for him to admire, as he went off to the cockpit. Inside the front of the Albatross sat a female Marine at the controls.

"How'd you sleep Sergeant?" Asked the pilot.

"Fairly well, Corporal," replied Baxter to Corporal Samantha Whelski. Baxter noticed Whelski's tired eyes, her dirty mangled hair that was getting longer then UNSC haircut standards, and her slightly bruised cheek. Baxter knew the Corporal could use some sleep and a shower. Baxter's heart warmed as he saw a beautiful sight outside the view port.

"Earth," he said smiling widely, looking out at the beautiful blue oceans and green lush continents.

"We'll be entering atmosphere soon," Whelski reported.

"What's our destination?" Baxter asked.

"You tell me," Whelski replied, looking up at the Sergeant.

Baxter looked at Whelski in disbelief, "I get to choose?" She nodded. "Anywhere?"

"Nobody else specified a place to rest," Whelski said. Baxter took a few seconds to think; where would he want some R & R for him and his troops? And then he had his answer, "Chicago."

Overthrowing the eerie whispers of the frigid air was the chanting, stomping, and clapping of anticipating followers of a new cause. Hundreds, possibly thousands were gathered on an elevated, frigid, mid-air cradle for their inspiration, their leader, their Champion.

Lead by two sage colored Elites and trailed by four identical Elites and one Covenant Flood Combat Form was a proud, battle born Elite. His custom made armor was jade and had a unique style to it that commanded respect from all that stood in its presence. A bold gold star was imprinted on his armor with glory and power. A chunk of armor was missing from his shoulder where marked upon the Elite's skin was a nasty looking battle scar that he regarded with pride rather shame.

The glorious, jade leader continued up the cradle with his personal guards where on the way there a few saluted as he passed. After so many grueling slopes up the cradle he finally came to his speaking platform where he had a full view of his audience. He was dazed to see the number of followers below him, all standing, waiting for him. He raised his arms in triumph and the crowd roared in glory and power.

The crowd consisted of mainly Elites, Grunts, and Hunters all looking very different from both Covenant and Heretics. The Elite's mainly wore sage green armor varying in hues among ranks, occasionally some seen with bright yellow armor. The majority of the Grunts wore golden armor while a few had brilliant, beaming emerald armor. The Hunters armor had a more royal yet terrifying look to them. Their colors were limited to a glorious golden touch or a sinister black tint. Each species did not wear their former Covenant styled armor, rather a new style to the new army.

All cheered out for the one Elite as if they were their savior or protector. The Elite closed his eyes, his followers' cheers was music to his ears. He let out a deep battle cry that echoed through the snowy atmosphere and the cheers inclined even more. Soon the hundreds began chanting a name, a title, an honor, "Champion".

Champion looked off to his right to see two guards watching over the Flood Combat form, shackles confining its limbs to keep it from attacking. "You see what I've done father? Are you not proud of me?" Ebak asked the combat form.

Its head bobbed gently and a low growl came from its infected lungs. The Champion turned back to his crowd and lowered his hands for silence, and his crowd gave their attentiveness.

"We have been betrayed my brothers," Champion began, in a grim tone, "The Prophets, the Brutes, and all that follow them, have betrayed us. Blood has been shed, blood of our brothers. The Covenant has been torn as have our hearts. Why would the Prophets deny us of our glory, of our salvation? Because they are afraid! Afraid of our true power!"

The crowd cried out at the Champion's glorified words and again he motioned for silence so he could speak, "The Prophets are stubborn fools and the Brutes have always been our enemies; this leads us to the one choice of seeking salvation for ourselves. It is OUR duty to have the power of the Great Journey, to be propelled among our saints, the forerunners. This universe belongs to the holy, divine, and powerful. The Prophets are weak, feeble, and pathetic. All they do is speak and give orders and philosophize while they have others do their dirty work. The Brutes are pig headed, mindless, and dirty. The Jackals are cowards, feeble, and backstabbing. Do any of these species have the right or cleanliness of the Great Journey, my brothers?"

"Neigh!" Shouted the crowd.

"CORRECT! The Covenant show all the characteristics of foolishness, weakness, and cowardice. Truly the Forerunners shall not look upon them, glorified enough to have eternal glory of the universe. The Covenant itself is a sin. Anyone who chooses to fight and join the Covenant has been immediately damned to oblivion where they shall not receive the blessing of the Forerunner's Great Journey. But who…who is worthy of the Great Journey?"

Champion looked out at his crowd thoughtfully as a low murmur ran through the crowd, "What about the Elites; strong, noble, born warriors?" The Elites growled and 'Worted' to each other proudly at Champion's words.

"What about the Grunts; loyal, hard-working, and trustworthy?" There was a content chatter among the Grunts whom found much praise in their leader's words.

"And what about the Hunters?" The Hunters immediately roared out in glory and their battle cries echoed through the frigid air. Ebak chuckled, glad to see the Hunters' pride, "Yes, you Hunters should be proud for what you are, for your power. And so I come back to my original question, who is worthy of the Great Journey?"

His crowd hung onto his words again, waiting for him to continue with his powerful speech, "Those whom have the eternal determination of finding the key to the Great Journey and fulfilling their brother's goals by activating Halo. Do you all have the determination to live, fight, and die for you and your fellow brothers' salvation of the Great Journey?"

All cried out affirmatively.

Champion raised his arm and pointed to the hundreds, "THEN ALL OF YOU ARE WORTHY OF THE GREAT JOURNEY!"

There was an even greater roar among Champion's followers. The celebrating cries of the crowd nearly shook the cradle from all the excitement. Ebak smiled at his follower's determination and held up his hand, ready to speak again, "However, not all Elites are worthy." There was a disappointed murmur among the Elites as Champion spoke, "Not all Grunts are worthy, and not all Hunters are worthy."

Before the murmur turned into a close outrage Ebak spoke again for his devote people, "A perfect example of this can be described by one individual." The crowd all waited patiently for Champion to go on. The frigid cradle became so awkwardly quiet that the whispers of the chilly wind could be easily heard. Champion took a deep breath of the icy air and went on, "Alei 'Limoto, the traitor." Champion spoke again, before a noisy muttering could stir about in the crowd, "Yes many of you may know this Elite. A once highly regarded Elite in the Covenant if I am correct. However he did disband from the Covenant some time before the betrayal if my information is not at fault. Despite his turn on the Covenant he is blind and pig headed. He is one of the few whom do not believe in the Great Journey. He is not the only one that turned on the Covenant yet does not believe in the Great Journey…there are many more along with him, siding with the humans. Brothers, what do we call these vermin that are to impure and sinful to see the glory in the Great Journey?"

"HERETICS!" Cried out the crowd in rebellion.

"This proving that every Elite, every Grunt, and every Hunter may not be worthy enough for the Great Journey. So my brothers, my followers that stand before me, you must accept something. Accept the fact that your cause will involve killing, slaughtering, and annihilating any who imperil the Great Journey. The Heretics and Humans are as sinful as the Covenant. So let us stand together, rejoice, and honor your fellow brethren before you, and share your similarities in virtue with honor! For we are the truth, we are the betrayed, we are the Forerunner's followers, we are salvation, we are…"

"THE DERELICT!" All roared, honoring their new title with a quaking, thundering force that the cradle began to shake in fear of the power.

"What is this place called again?" Alei 'Limoto questioned, looking around at the towering, claustrophobic buildings.

"Chicago," Baxter replied, happily.

"Is it always this cold and deserted?" Alei asked, noticing no life on the streets.

"Today is a special day for us humans Alei," Baxter said with a smile.

Alei did seem to notice a sense of celebrating among the city. Various houses were lit up with colorful lights, joyful singing could be heard in occasional homes, and sweet scents lingered from various doorways into the streets.

"The Covenant have waged war onto Earth, yet you humans seem to be celebrating. What is the significance of this special day for you humans, Baxter?" Alei asked.

"It's called Christmas," Baxter said with a broad smile.

"This day, Kreesmas, would stop your race from worrying about the Covenant threat?" Alei asked.

"I've heard reports that ever since Regret left Earth through slip space the Covenant haven't been attacking Earth that much. However I think we can expect the Covenant to strike Earth fairly quickly," Woodword explained.

Alei shivered as a cold wind passed by.

"Getting cold big guy?" Whelski asked, noticing Alei shudder from the cold.

"I've been walking through snow for how many days now?" Alei said, irritated at the cold climate.

"Sergeant, where exactly are you leading us?" Woodword said, starting to get a bit irritated in walking through the snow as well.

"Here," Baxter said, stopping instantly.

They all stopped and examined their destination. It was a white, snow covered, two story house with smoke coming from the chimney. All the lights were on and a delightful smell wafted from the windows and doors.

As Baxter approached the house he quickly turned to his squad, "Sorry guys you'll need to stay out here for a few minutes. I don't want Hailey freaking out or anything."

"Understood," Alei said, speaking for the others as Baxter entered the house without knocking. The Sergeant took great care in trying to be as silent as possible when entering, trying to keep his presence a surprise.

He quietly shut the door behind him. He examined the living room; it was warm, quiet, and exactly as Baxter had remembered it. He quietly proceeded into the kitchen where there he saw her. She was slaving over the stove, preparing her Christmas dinner.


She turned, looking shocked from the familiar voice.

"John!" She ran over to her soldier and hugged the life out of him. The two embraced and John could feel her tears wash the blood off his uniform.

"John I missed you so much," she whispered in his ear.

"So did I," John said, "So did I."

Alei and the rest waited in the frigid streets of Chicago, wondering what to do. Alei stared absently at the snow white house when he felt something tug on his leg. Alei looked down to see Kaskut tugging on his leg, doing a funny little dance.

Alei chuckled, "What is it Kaskut?"

"Me gotta go!"

"Go? Go where?"

"Go pee!"

Alei's eyes widened hearing this, "Now? Can't it wait, Kaskut?"

"NO! ME NEED GO NOW!" Kaskut squeaked, his dance becoming more ridicules then ever.

Alei looked back at the house. He couldn't let his sidekick be humiliated to pee himself in the human streets. He sighed and took the Grunt by the hand and escorted him into the house like a teacher escorting a kindergartener.

The couple kissed and examined each other, seeing the changes that time had on each other.

"You look different," John said, noticing her shorter dyed hair. Not only had her hair looked different but her figure had changed by a few pounds but Baxter discarded the small physical change in appearance and embraced her true, eternal beauty.

"Really? Not too different, right?" She asked, playing with her new hair style.

"You'll always look beautiful to me," Baxter said smiling.

There was a moment of silence that was quickly cut short by a pleasant barking that Baxter recognized instantly. "Jasper!" Baxter said, as a golden lab came sprinting into the kitchen looking happier then ever. The golden lab pounced and took down Baxter easily and immediately drenched the Sergeant's face with love filled saliva.

"He looks really happy to see you," Hailey said, laughing at the two.

"No kidding. What have you been feeding him? He's gotten big!" Baxter managed to wrestle the dog off and got back to his feet. "I remember the look on your face when I first brought him home," Baxter said, stroking the dog's furry head.

"It was my birthday," Hailey said, recalling the past, "May 3rd, the day you left me."

"But I made it back for the holidays," Baxter said, glad to be in his love's presence once again.

"I was worried sick about you John," Hailey said softly.

"And I missed you so much," Baxter replied. There was another moment of silence and Baxter could tell there was something on Hailey's mind, "What's up?"

Hailey sighed and failed to meet eye contact with her love. "John, there's something you need to know…"

Baxter clung to her words, waiting to hear what she had to say. Then there was an abrupt slamming of the front door and both turned immediately towards the living room. Hailey shrieked seeing the sight of two aliens walk into her living room.

"Don't panic," John said reassuringly, "Don't worry, they're friends."

"Friends?" Hailey asked, terror in her voice.

"Excuse our presences," Alei said, bowing in courtesy, "But Kaskut needs to use your latrine."

"Second door down that hallway on the right," Baxter said pointing down a hallway, having memorized his girlfriend's house by heart.

Kaskut dashed towards the given destination while Alei was left in the awkward presence of a frightened human.

"Hailey, this is my friend…my brother, Alei 'Limoto."

"Brother?" Hailey asked now confused and frightened.

"How do you do?" Alei said, bowing humbly to the female human.

Hailey continued to look puzzled and scared. "Hailey, don't worry, he's not part of the Covenant any more. He's sworn to never hurt another human again. And if it weren't for Alei, I'm not sure I'd still be standing here right now."

Hailey took another look at the crimson armored Elite and couldn't find any reason to fear the alien. If the Elite had contributed to Baxter's life then he was to be trusted. "Well…I suppose I could set up a few more plates for your friends," Hailey said.

"Speaking of friends; me, Alei, and Kaskut aren't the only ones who came back to visit," Baxter said, remembering the rest of his squad, still waiting outside.

"Your speech really compelled the audience, Champion," commented one of Ebak's guards, escorting him into a more private area.

"So it did," Champion said, closing his eyes and feeling the mighty presence of his loyal followers, "The Derelict will prosper quickly I should hope. All we need is a few strikes of vengeance on the Covenant, a few more recruiting campaigns, and of course the studying of our secret weapons."

"Choosing the Flood as a pawn and weapon in your plan was a very wise decision, Champion," said the guard, examining the restrained Flood.

"He is but a mere symbol," Champion said, noticing his guard's amusement in his Flood father, "A symbol of how loyalty, dignity, and honor keeps us all alive even when we suffer. I thank you father for your sacrifice to the Derelict and I hope to one day find a remedy for your infection."

All Ebak's guards were dead silent as their Champion gazed at his Flood infested father. Champion turned back to his guards and spoke, "Leave me and my father in peace and carry out orders assigned by my appointed officers. The Derelict's time to unfold and react to this new age of this war is now."

"Kaskut why don't you sit at the table and eat with the rest of us?" Alei asked, looking down at the Grunt whom was plopped on the floor near a bowl.

"That food smelly, this food better!" Kaskut said, occasionally taking off his mask to dig his hand into the bowl of odd food and shoving it in his mouth.

"Er…Kaskut, that's not regular food. That's do…" Baxter began but Alei put his hand on Baxter's shoulder and shook his head, not wanting to spoil Kaskut's meal.

Everyone watched the Grunt feast on dog food. Jasper quickly ran over to his bowl defensively and tackled the Grunt playfully. The two began to wrestle and everyone began laughing at their entertainment for the night.

"I guess Jasper didn't want to share his meal," Hailey said, wiping tears of laughter from her eyes. After the laughter had settled everyone began eating their Christmas meal.

"You know, I kind of sorry for the Hunters…" Woodword brought up at the table as he swallowed.

Hailey dearly dropped her fork, "You…you brought Hunters too?"

"Relax, Hailey," Baxter said, placing his hand on her arm reassuringly.

"Don't worry, they'll be fine outside," Alei said, remembering the Tebo brothers had to stay outside since they could never fit through the human doorways.

"I think Alei might be right," Whelski said, putting away her dirtied dishes in the kitchen sink, and looking out the window. Through the window she could see the Hunters playing with children outside whom tossed snowballs at the Hunters' giant shields and rode on the goliath aliens while the Hunters in return roared in laughter at the amused children.

"Do you mind if I use your bathroom Hailey? I haven't showered since departure," Whelski asked.

"Go ahead. You can use the bathroom upstairs," Hailey replied.

Woodword and Alei finished their meals not long after Whelski had,s and both were offered guest rooms upstairs. Baxter and Hailey were left, eating their dinner together in private and in silence. Both gazed into each other's eyes that they had missed for so long.

"So now that we have some privacy…" Hailey began but was stopped by Baxter. Baxter turned to find Kaskut and Remorseful Incentive staring awkwardly at the couple.

"Um…do you mind?" Kaskut merely blinked perplexedly at Baxter. "Could you leave us two in privacy?"

"Where we go to then?" Kaskut asked.

"I don't know…go bug Woodword," Baxter said, getting a bit impatient with the two.

Kaskut waddled up stairs, the monitor tailing behind the Grunt.

"As you were saying…" Baxter said, getting back to what Hailey had to say.

She blushed and took a few seconds to think over what she had to say, "John there's something I have to tell you."

"Go on. I'm listening," Baxter said, staring into Hailey's luminous eyes.

She took a deep breath and looked back at the Sergeant, "John," she began, Baxter anticipating her words, "I'm pregnant."

Alei dropped like dead weight onto the surprisingly soft and comfortable human bed. He ran his fingers across the comforter taking great pleasure in how soft the human's kept their beds.

He sat upright and felt an aching pain that he had been suffering throughout his journey. His back and entire body was tired and limp from fighting and from wearing his armor constantly. He tried to recall the last time he took off his heavy armor; it had been possibly months.

He began with his leg attachments and worked upwards to his torso and helmet. He sighed in relief having the burden of his armor relieved. Then there was a faint, musical humming that became noticeable to Alei instantly. He turned to discover that the bedroom he was in had another door, where the humming had originated.

The door opened and steam plunged from the bathroom leaving only a silhouette of someone barely visible. Alei squinted trying to make out the figure when he could identify who it was.

"Alei!" Whelski said in a jumpy manner.

The Corporal was no longer in her combat uniform, rather draped in a fluffy, white towel. Her hair was drenched and strained, her face was moist and clear, and her skin was wet and pale.

Samantha held onto her towel defensively, still shocked to see Alei in her in only a towel. Alei too felt awkward without his combat dressing. Both were at a loss of words, having mutual feelings of the current circumstances.

"Excuse me," Alei said, feeling his presence was disturbing Whelski's privacy, "I shall leave you in private."

Just as he began gathering his armor Whelski spoke, "Alei wait!"

Alei turned and saw Whelski slowly approaching him. He stood there, wondering what Whelski was doing. She was now close to him, very close. The two stared into each others' eyes and Alei was shocked to be experiencing such a sacred feeling for her.

Alei was shocked to now see beauty in the human that stood before him and he felt a mutual feeling for her. But how could this be, Alei thought. Feelings for a human? Sure a bond of friendship easily built up between Baxter and Alei, but one of the most sacred feelings to the Elites, love, with a human. Alei could feel it but couldn't believe it. He tried speaking but everything came out as jumbled stuttering.

Whelski could tell what Alei was feeling just by hearing his nervous babbling. She put a finger to her lips for silence and placed both hands on each side of the Elite's head. Alei closed his eyes, taking comfort in her smooth palms and felt something wet make contact with his forehead. He opened his eyes and saw Whelski blushing and smiling.


Whelski chuckled and explained, "It's called a kiss. It's what humans do to say I love you."

Alei stood their dumbstruck, at a lack of words now. Then he felt Whelski's warm arms wrap around his waist and her damp head rest against his chest. "And this?" Alei asked.

"A Hug," replied Whelski softly.

Alei looked at his own hands, wondering what to do with them and decided to copy what Whelski was doing. He placed his arms Whelski as well and did an act of affection that Elites do when they're in love.

Whelski began laughing softly as she felt Alei's mandibles tickle her neck. "What are you doing?" Whelski asked, still laughing softly.

"It's what Elites do to say I love you," Alei replied.

The two then both plopped onto the bed and the two both broke the barriers of love between alien species and for that night alone Earth was the peaceful place it was so long ago…