|A Matter of Trust
Author: Dr. Zachary Smith PM
An alien with ulterior motives sows seeds of mistrust between Smith and the Robinsons.Rated: Fiction T - English - Sci-Fi/Adventure - Chapters: 2 - Words: 2,959 - Reviews: 1 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 04-16-13 - Published: 10-31-12 - id: 8658756
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The Good Doctor's Disclaimer: I am merely a reluctant stowaway writing of my adventures with the Robinson family. I make no claim to any part of the Jupiter 2 mission.
Author's Note: Updates to this tale may not be as frequent as I would like. Please follow the story if you'd like to be notified when the latest chapters are done.
Chapter 1: First Contact
The landscape of a new world sat just beyond the viewport of the Jupiter 2. Doctor Zachary Smith stood observing it, hands clasped behind his back, while his companions bustled about the ship, preparing to disembark.
"A barren, god-forsaken wasteland." He sighed heavily. "How original."
The Robot rolled up behind the doctor. "At least the atmosphere is breathable."
"Yeah, Doctor Smith," Will chimed in. "That means you can 'stretch your legs', like you've been wanting to for weeks now."
Smith turned to address the pair. "I'd much rather stretch my legs on..."
"Earth," Will and the Robot supplied in unison. "Yeah, we know," Will added, "but this is all we've got right now. Are you coming with us?"
"If I must," Smith groaned, more out of his habit of being contrary than any true desire to stay cooped up.
Smith followed Will and the Robot down the ramp. He paused at the top and surveyed the area, a sense of uneasiness gnawing at him. He hadn't liked the planet as seen from behind the viewport. He liked it even less as he set foot on it.
The Professor and Major quickly got to work setting up the forcefield to protect them against any hostile lifeforms the planet might harbor, while Judy, Penny, and Mrs. Robinson set up the hydroponic garden.
Will grabbed Smith's hand. "C'mon, Doctor Smith. Let's go explore."
Smith reluctantly allowed himself to be pulled along by the exuberant boy. His idea of exploration differed vastly from Will's, as he intended to explore only as far as the nearest shade tree, under which he planned on taking a nap.
"Don't go too far," Mrs. Robinson admonished.
"We won't," Will called back.
"Stay in sight of the camp," his father added.
A rocky outcropping caught Will's interest and he wandered toward it, removing a small pick from his bag as he approached.
Seeing the boy was preoccupied, Smith made his way toward a nearby tree. As he reached it, movement off in the distance caught his eye. Placing his hands on the tree for support, he peeked around it and looked for an explanation, which he quickly found. Some three hundred yards away, he spied an alien creature, olive in color, and decidedly larger than the average human. It was bipedal and obviously sentient, as it was clothed and carrying some type of bag. It must have sensed Smith's presence, as it turned and looked in his direction. Smith darted behind the tree to hide, pressing his back flush against the trunk.
"William," Smith said, trying to keep his voice calm. "I think, perhaps, we should get back to the Jupiter 2."
"But we just got here, Doctor Smith."
Smith peeked from behind the tree to see that the creature was headed their way. Panic started to creep into his voice. "William, we're about to have company and I'm not sure it's of a friendly nature. I suggest we get going before it is upon us."
The doctor dashed from the tree toward Will. He forcibly pushed the boy along ahead of him as he looked anxiously behind him for sign of the approaching alien. Will initially resisted, but after seeing Smith's panicked state and a flash of movement behind them, he decided perhaps the doctor was right.
The two arrived at camp out of breath, their excited warnings about what they'd seen blending together in an incoherent mess.
"Whoa, slow down. What's the matter?" the Professor asked his young son.
Before the boy could talk, Smith interjected. "Professor, it appears we're not alone on this desolate planet. We saw an alien, a large alien, and he looked decidedly hostile. He's headed in our direction."
"Don, activate the forcefield," the Professor commanded. He dashed inside the Jupiter 2 and returned with two laser pistols, just in case they were needed. He and the Major strapped them on and stood ready.
The wait for first contact with this new alien was tense. Everyone stood alert, watching in different directions for its approach. After a few minutes, it came out from behind some rocks. The humans studied it as it approached the group. Its appearance was a bit intimidating, but the Robinsons knew full well that looks could be deceiving. Its hands bore three long, sharp-clawed digits and an opposable thumb. Its eyes were large and almond shaped, looking very catlike, even down to the shape of the iris. Its skin seemed rough and, in places, was thick and plated, like the leathery armor of an armadillo.
The alien stopped when it ran into the forcefield, which seemed to leave it a bit perplexed. It cocked its head and moved a hesitant hand forward to touch the forcefield again. It pulled its hand back in surprise when it encountered resistance and a shock from the invisible bubble.
The alien shifted its focus from the forcefield to the humans beyond. It uttered something unintelligible in a deep but singsong voice. The Robot recorded the alien language and began analyzing it in an attempt to decipher it.
The Professor stepped towards the creature and tried a little communication of his own. "I am John Robinson of Earth. We are here with only peaceful intentions."
The alien responded, but whether or not he had understood was impossible to tell. The Robot recorded the additional dialog and added it to his analysis. "Professor Robinson, if you can keep him talking, I may be able to learn his language and serve as a translator between you."
"Alright," the Professor answered. He went to each of the members of the Jupiter 2 crew, introducing them by name and primary responsibilities. Doctor Smith, as always, was left for last. "And this is Doctor... Where's Doctor Smith?" The Professor turned to find the man had vanished some time during his other introductions. "Smith?"
Smith poked his head out from the safety of the Jupiter 2. He gave a timid wave accompanied by a sheepish smile. The alien appeared to laugh and mimicked the doctor's action with a wave of his own while uttering a few more sentences in its native language. The Robinsons and Major West laughed with the creature and considered the tension broken. If they had known the thoughts going through the alien's head, they might have reconsidered.
"I've got it!" the Robot exclaimed. He relayed the information he'd translated from the creature. "This alien is not native to this planet. He's here on an exploratory mission from a planet approximately 0.8 light years away. His name is... unpronounceable by humans. His craft experienced trouble during landing and has been damaged beyond repair. He is stranded here. Also, he thinks Doctor Smith is an idiot."
Major West laughed heartily, "I think I like this guy already."
"What?!" came the offended reply. The doctor stomped down the ramp and stood a few feet from the alien. He began by rattling off a list of his academic and career accomplishments in an attempt to prove his superior intelligence, which ultimately didn't seem to impress the alien. The creature made a quick move toward the doctor, then backed off, intending to test the doctor's fortitude. Smith let out a small yelp and skittered behind the Professor for protection.
The alien laughed again and pointed. The Robot translated the words he said next. "This one seems utterly useless. Do you just keep him around for entertainment?"
The doctor stood ramrod straight upon hearing the latest insult. He harrumphed mightily, "I will not stand around and be insulted by some overgrown ogre!" He then stalked off to his cabin without another word.
The Robot translated Smith's words for the creature, which elicited another laugh.
The Professor deemed the alien friendly enough to risk turning off the forcefield and did so with the Major's concurrence. With the help of the Robot, they spent the rest of the afternoon getting to know their new neighbor.