The Kavakian Empire
A Space Opera by Dawn Ross
Part Two – The Emperor
(This is chapter 1, but it’s not the beginning of chapter 1. Please check out the previous posts to read 1a and 1b of this sci-fi story. Also, this is part two. If you haven’t read part one of this novella saga, you can read it by going through the archives beginning August 2014, by clicking through to the oldest post under The Kavakian Empire category, or by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
When the Tredon Dragon warriors realized the Alliance troops had stopped firing, they swarmed into the laser room chamber. The room was vast, even with the large laser taking up so much space. But the chamber was no longer a neat, well-constructed room. The place was a disaster. The cavern walls were exposed in a number of places and debris littered the floor.
The Dragon warriors waded through easily, like killer ants overrunning and devouring their prey. J.T. and his surviving troops were surrounded in no time. Dozens of black garbed warriors towered over them. They were all huge, well-built men. Their reptilian uniforms conformed to their bodies, enhancing every muscular ripple. Some warriors of other races built the muscular look into their armor, but the Tredon warriors needed no such enhancements. If J.T. hadn’t already been afraid for his life, the stares of these hard men would have done the trick.
J.T. was sure the warriors were going to kill them then and there. But with a sharp command from their leader, the enemy manhandled and forced J.T. and the others to lay face down onto the floor. Before J.T. could even think of resisting, he and his troops all had their hands bound behind their backs.
“Hey, look at this one!” one of the warriors said as he slapped Hanna’s behind sharply. “It’s a woman,” he laughed.
“No wonder they lost so easily,” another warrior said. “They have their women fighting for them.”
“Knock it off, you dumbass brute,” Hanna growled. “I’m no helpless woman. You touch me and I’ll rip off your balls and shove them down your throat.”
J.T. winced. Antagonizing a Dragon warrior was never a good idea. At the same time, though, he admired Hanna’s spirit.
The Dragon warrior laughed. He moved to mount her but an order from the leader stopped him short. “Duty first, Lank.”
The ugly warrior named Lank obeyed. Hanna was left alone for now. But J.T. cringed inwardly at the thought of her fate.
“Sir!” a Dragon warrior called out with alarm. He was lankier than the other warriors, but still sinewy. “They have a self-destruct set on the laser.”
“Disarm it,” the leader said, as though it were the simplest thing in the world.
“I’m not sure I can,” the man replied.
Good, J.T. though. Perhaps Hanna won’t be used to entertain these beasts. Somehow, the thought of dying in a sudden large explosion gave him a sense of relief.
That small spark of hope was dashed, though, when the Dragon leader forced one of J.T.’s troops to his feet.
“Do you know how to deactivate the self-destruct?” he asked.
“N-no,” the prisoner replied.
The leader struck the man across the face so hard that J.T. heard his jaw pop. The man fell to the ground and groaned in pain. The dragon warrior lifted him to his feet again and put his face in the prisoner’s face.
“I ask you again, are you sure you don’t know how to deactivate the self-destruct?”
The man, a lieutenant junior grade who had served security on board another Alliance ship, shook his head since he was unable to speak. The Dragon warrior grabbed him by the jaw so hard that the man screamed in agony.
“Are you sure?” the warrior demanded.
The man was crying now. He was trying to beg, but his jaw wouldn’t work.
After asking a few more times, the warrior leader simply snapped the man’s neck, killing him instantly.
But that wasn’t the end of it. The warrior leader picked up another one of J.T.’s troops and asked the same question. He let the torture drag on a little longer before he killed this on too. J.T. felt his insides curl. He wanted to throw up. How much longer before the laser explodes? he asked himself.
The next man the Dragon leader picked up was Simmonds. Simmonds had actually vomited. Some of the bile was on his chin. His eyes were wide and he was so afraid that the warrior had to hold him up lest he fall.
Simmonds wasn’t a coward. He was a good fighter or J.T. never would have had him on his team. But the Dragon warrior was too much. Simmonds took two painful hits before he relented and agreed to disarm the self-destruct.
After the laser bomb was deactivated, J.T. and the surviving men and woman were put in a corner and kept under heavy guard. Their hands were bound tightly behind their backs and they were forced into a sitting or lying position. Moving even a little brought a swift kick from one of the heavy-booted warriors. There was no escape.
Time dragged agonizingly while J.T waited for something to happen. The warriors who weren’t guarding the prisoners milled about, doing nothing important. J.T. wondered what the heck they were waiting for when the emperor himself arrived. Because of their Dragon guards, J.T. didn’t see him so much as hear him.
“Start dismantling the laser,” Emperor Kavak ordered, and men behind him came forth and went to work. “Jako, download everything you can get from these computers. General Trevine, are any of your prisoners the scientists working on the laser?”
“It doesn’t look like it, your Eminence, but possibly.” J.T. couldn’t see the man who spoke, but it sounded like Trevine was the Dragon leader that had tortured and killed two of his troops earlier.
“Let me see them,” Emperor Kavak said.
The Tredon warriors guarding J.T. and the others split apart. The warriors were large men, but most were not has big as the emperor himself. He was both tall and wide with bulging muscles. He had the same dark straight hair and same dark narrow eyes as the other warriors, but his nose was sharper and more angular. His glare somehow seemed more intense as well.
Despite the tremendous presence of Emperor Kavak himself, he was not the one that caught J.T.’s attention. On either side of the great man stood two boys – a child of about ten and an adolescent, both of which J.T. had encountered only months before – Jori and Terk, the Kavakian Princes.
(This sci-fi novella is protected by copyright) Copyright May, 2015 by Dawn Ross
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