Ok, first things first, to alert all my readers, before continuing further I would suggest reading the new timeline I posted on 'Asclepheus expanded' as the years of the universe have changed.
Now, keeping with the amount of feedback I got from the last chapter, this chapter will also be a training chapter. Now because of the progression the story is taking, I didn't want to spend another chapter after this one on training, so I'll get the point of the training across in this chapter.
Why? You may ask. Well its quite simple: if this training stage lasted another chapter then, that would mean I've spent this long on the story without even getting to the main point of the story yet…..seriously I'm nowhere near the second act yet and sooner or later it's going to fucking kill me.
I understand that a lot of you want to spend more time in Al'Dan's early years but his early years. Here is the main problem with that: the early years of his life contribute to about 15-20% of the story in the grand scheme of things. If I keep coming back to this stage then it will get harder and harder for me to come up with new and entertaining content and sooner or later I will stop having fun and will lose my passion for writing this story…and trust me, you guys don't want that.
Now without further ado
Al'Dan Chapter 8
The Bitter Past
Human Year: 2243
Al'Dan Age: 17
*The Next Morning
The next morning was not that eventful, Al'Dan and Liana woke up without any real trouble, Bul'Vyr already awake and ready before them, fiddling with some hardware, training dummies, targets attached to tree branches.
All in all, it seemed like Bul'Vyr meant business, he meant to train these young pups to become hunters, it was not an easy path and Bul'Vyr wasn't going to roll out the red carpet to his trainees. Liana had only just finished her breakfast a few minutes ago, and already she was sweating buckets under the training her uncle had given her, doing pull ups by her legs was easy…. but doing pull ups by her legs with weights attached to her upper torso was not.
Al'Dan however was being given a different treatment. Bul'Vyr had noticed a flaw while watching over him and Liana, and it was a flaw that needed to be rectified.
"I'm not exaggerating when I say that I've seen better tree climbers that don't even have limbs" Bul'Vyr muttered as he opened a bag he brought off of the ship.
"Well….thanks" Al'Dan sarcastically commented. Bul'Vyr wasn't known for sugar coating things.
"A hunter takes advantage of all his surroundings, the trees above you serve as platforms to get a lay of the land, you can't use them if you can barely climb them. To become a great Hunter, you need that ability" Bul'Vyr replied as he walked up the landing ramp of his ship.
Al'Dan followed his mentor into the ship, the cargo hold section to be exact. The blue skinned hunter walked up to a nearby crate and opened it up in order to reach the contents, or at least try to find them as he rummaged through the supplies.
"Master, I doubt any type of finger strength training could help me climb trees bare handed. I have plenty of finger strength, I just don't have the claws that Yautja have" Al'Dan replied to his master's words.
"I thought that something like this might happen, so before we left I had to special order something from Ran'Yal, the old bastard owed me a favour or two" Bul'Vyr said as he pulled something from the depths of the crate.
Al'Dan's attention peaked at the mention of Ran'Yal, the old Yautja that owned the trading Depot back on the clanship. Al'Dan knew the variety of otherworldly objects and items that Ran'Yal got his hands on. The old Yautja had connections all over the universe, even in the Empire. Whatever this 'special order' was, had to be good, the last special item he had seen in Ran'Yal's store was that LaarGuar leather. Last he checked no one had bought it because no could have any practical use for it.
The old Yautja had a lot of exotic trinkets, so this 'special order' had Al'Dan excited.
"Try these on" the old hunter tossed the contraptions into the hands of the young human.
Al'Dan studied the objects that Bul'Vyr had thrown him. They had the appearance of gloves, but had the appearance of unfinished clawed gauntlets. They lacked any kind of armour plating, but still looked like they had the structural integrity of tools made for combat.
"What are these?" Al'Dan asked with a raised brow.
"Those are Felician training frames, very hard to come by" Bul'Vyr replied as he began to walk outside.
"And…what pray tell are Felician training frames?" Al'Dan asked, following his master out of the ship.
"Felicians are feline humanoids that belong to the Kamad Empire, they use those training frames for members of their race that suffer from a lack of claws. They are very good climbers, so I thought those would help you with your…. climbing problems" Bul'Vyr replied.
"Huh…it'll help me climb?"
"Well you sure as hell can't get any worse" Bul'Vyr replied.
The blue skinned Yautja looked around, scanning the treeline for a tree to start with.
"There" Bul'Vyr pointed at a very wide and even taller tree. The bark was very dark shade of brown and looked pretty thick, 'the perfect starting tree' Bul'Vyr thought.
"You want me to climb that?" Al'Dan asked with a raised eyebrow.
"No, I want you to lift it…of course I want you to climb it" Bul'Vyr said with crossed arms.
"Okay, okay…just how did Ran'Yal get his hands on these things?" Al'Dan asked as he put on the training frames.
"That crazy bastard has seen more of the universe than most hunters. He's defiantly been around more sentients than many of the hunters I know, so naturally he has made many friends with sentient species belonging to the empire. Those frames from what I understand belonged to the brother of a Felician woman that Ran'Yal was…intimate with" Bul'Vyr replied, trailing off at the end.
Al'Dan froze on the spot, halfway through putting on the second frame.
"Intimate?" Al'Dan looked up at his master.
"Yeah…that randy bastard gets his way around. Can't say I blame him, Felician women are considered to be very attractive by many species" Bul'Vyr chuckled.
Al'Dan just tried to finish putting on his other frame, latching it into place and adjusting it to the size of his hands.
Bul'Vyr looked over his shoulder to see Liana hard at work before he turned back to Al'Dan and crouched down to whisper in his ear.
"Although I must say, I get the feeling that Felician women are the last thing on your mind" Bul'Vyr whispered, watching with a grin as Al'Dan's eyes widened.
"I...I don't know what you mean, master"
"I think you do. I may be old, but I'm not blind nor am I deaf Al'Dan. I see the way you two look at each other and I saw you stand in front of her when faced with death, even the words you exchanged with each other last night" Bul'Vyr whispered.
"I…I was just doing what you told me, master. You want me to protect her" Al'Dan replied with a stammer.
"That's true…just remember, if you hurt her, I will rip your pretty little skull from your pretty little head…understand?" Bul'Vyr whispered in a nonchalant tone.
"Uh….Uh-Huh" Al'Dan stammered at the look in Bul'Vyr's eyes before the blue skinned hunter smirked and replied "Good…glad we understand each other" the old Yautja straightened up and pointed to the tree "Now climb".
*1 Hour Later
"Ok, there's no need to show off!" Liana angrily growled.
"Jealous!" Al'Dan chuckled back.
"I got to say, those frames did the job" Bul'Vyr smirked to himself, stroking his chin at the sight before him.
Al'Dan had taken to climbing like a natural born Yautja and was now doing pull ups on one of the branches of the tree about 30 feet in the air. The frames had enhanced his ability to grip, giving him a chance to use his strength to maintain his balance. Al'Dan was stronger than the average human his age, so he could lift his own weight with no problem.
"Not the frames, just pure skill" Al'Dan chuckled.
Bul'Vyr smirked at the declaration, it was good that his apprentice was so confident, but too much confidence could hinder progress. The old Yautja had to take matters back into his hands, and he knew exactly how.
"Well that's good to hear. If you are so confident in your skill, then the next stage will be easy" Bul'Vyr smirked.
"Whatever you want, master. Pull ups? Sit-ups? Want me to do it one armed?" Al'Dan smiled.
"No…improvise" Bul'Vyr smiled as his plasmacaster came to life and powered up.
"UNCLE WHAT ARE YOU DOING!?" Liana shouted as she saw her uncle's plasmacaster charge,
Before he got a chance to reply.
The blue bolt of plasma energy leapt forth from the barrel of Bul'Vyr's plasmacaster, hurdling its way towards the branch Al'Dan was hanging from.
With a flash of blue energy, the branch was blown to pieces and Al'Dan fell from the falling piece of charred wood.
The young human fell, gravity now his enemy as he tumbled down.
A 30-foot drop from this height would kill him if he landed in the wrong place, but even if he landed in the right place it would break a limb or at the very least concuss him.
The young human only had one option left: to regain his grip on the tree.
Using what momentum, he had, he inched his way towards the trunk of the tree, reaching out with his now clawed hands. The razor-sharp talons of his frames drug into the bark of tree, tearing bits of the bark out as he did. Leaving long claw marks against the bark of the tree as he slowed down to a halt.
"What the hell!?" Al'Dan shouted at Bul'Vyr who started at the young human before unfolding his arms to engage in a slow clap.
"Very good…you are learning. Unfortunately, those claw marks would give a cloaked hunter away, you will do this every morning until you don't leave claw marks on the trees" Bul'Vyr replied.
"You've got to be kidding" Al'Dan's eyes widened.
"Have I ever 'kidded' you before?" Bul'Vyr raised a brow.
"…good point" Al'Dan dropped his head with a sigh.
"Now, come on I'm peckish. Its time you learned how to hunt small game" Bul'Vyr said as he turned to walk towards the tree line.
Al'Dan quickly made his way down the tree, dusting the bits of bark off of his chest and frame claws as he did. Liana only stood and stared at him.
"What?" Al'Dan asked.
"Don't ever be a show-off in front of my uncle again" Liana stared at him.
"I thought he warmed up to me" Al'Dan replied.
"After a few years? Hardly, Uncle Bul'Vyr barely ever warms up to anyone" Liana replied.
"Yeah…good point. Still, did you enjoy the show?" Al'Dan said with a smirk, flexing his right bicep. Al'Dan's muscles wouldn't have been big compared to a Yautja his age, but compared to other humans he was quite toned.
"Really? I just told you not to show-off" Liana said with her hands on her hips.
"You said not to show off to your Uncle, you didn't say I can't show off to you" Al'Dan smirked.
"Oh, Paya help me" Liana sighed before walking off to follow her uncle. The young human with a smirk splayed across his face following along.
*3 days later.
The trees blew freely in the wind, the rustling of leaves filling the air. Small mammals and reptiles scurrying across the floor as birds and other flying creatures flew from branch to branch of the trees above.
If not for the small differentiations in the wildlife, one would have mistaken this for a European forest in the middle of summer. But of course, the wildlife present was different from the sort you would find on earth on a first glance.
That was until a medium sized predator stalked its prey. A feline predator about the size of a grey hound, walking on all fours as it stalked a furry mammal about the size of a rabbit.
But just as the animal leapt out, a snare wrapped itself about the creature's legs, sending it hurdling into the air with a loud crack of the vines used to create the snare.
The feline snarled, baring its three rows of needle-like teeth and trying desperately to free itself, but to no avail.
"Well done I can honestly say that I'm impressed" Bul'Vyr smirked as he walked from behind one of the nearby bushes to inspect the newly captured creature. 3 days of training Al'Dan and Liana the art of laying traps and using your environment to your advantage had paid off, these two were fast learners.
"Did it work?" Al'Dan's head poked out from the bushes besides Liana.
"It did, although this isn't exactly the sort of creature you hunt for meat" Bul'Vyr said as he closely inspected the predator.
"I didn't want it for the meat" Al'Dan smiled as he walked up besides Bul'Vyr with Liana.
"Really? Then what did you hunt it for, pray tell?" Bul'Vyr asked with his arms crossed behind his back.
"You see that coat of fur? I bet my mother would love that when I come back" Al'Dan said with a smile.
Bul'Vyr had to admit, Al'Dan had the right mentality. Hunters didn't just hunt for meat, they also hunted for hides, furs, trophies, aspects of the creature that could be used to enforce and craft weapons. Al'Dan's approach to want to hunt this creature to produce a quality fur as a gift for a loved one was an attitude that belonged to a Yautja hunter.
Although the amount of pelt you would get from a creature this lean wouldn't be much. Hardly a trophy befitting an achievement. But it was to be expected as a first trophy, Bul'Vyr remembered that his first trophy was barely any bigger that this creature.
Then again it was probably best that Al'Dan wanted to give it to his mother and not keep it for himself.
It was against the Hunter's code to keep the spoils of a kill before you were anointed a hunter by your clan. If you killed a creature on another world and kept its skull, teeth, bones, hides or furs to yourself without being an anointed hunter, you would be breaking one of the laws of the Hunter's code.
In Yautja society, the Hunter's code was a set of rules that reflected upon the hunters that belonged to the many clans of the Yautja species.
If you broke one of the minor rules of the code, you would be considered a pariah or social poison in the eyes of the people.
If you broke one of the more important rules of the code you would be forbidden from taking part in any hunting ceremonies, including annual hunts, proving sports or even some festivals that Yautja celebrated.
But if you broke the most important rules of the code, you would find yourself either on death row, or be cast out a Bad Blood, a clanless criminal for the rest of your days until you died or until you proved yourself worthy.
The rule that Al'Dan would have broken in keeping a trophy without becoming an anointed hunter first, was one of the middle rules. Which would have banned him from taking part in his clan's manhood ritual. The ritual that he would inevitably have to complete in order to become an anointed hunter.
"Alright then…next lesson. To take a life. Al'Dan come here" Bul'Vyr motioned with his head.
The young human rushed up besides the Blue skinned hunter. Al'Dan watched his mentor take out a serrated ritual knife, gleaming steel shining in the sunlight. Bul'Vyr then handed the blade to his apprentice.
"Finish what you started" Bul'Vyr said.
Al'Dan looked between the knife and the creature he had captured in the snare. The feline had stopped struggling and had seemed to have given into its fate. It hung upside down, waiting for the killing blow when it realized it had no hope of breaking free.
Al'Dan took the knife from Bul'Vyr and looked at the creature. The feline looking at him as he walked closer.
Al'Dan made eye contact with the feline creature and for the first time realized.
This would be his first kill.
Without even realizing it, his hands began to shake as the feline stared into his eyes. He always dreamed of becoming a hunter, it was his dream and it would gain him both the acceptance he wanted. But only now did he realize it meant taking life.
He hadn't prepared himself for this.
He had basic knowledge of how to fight, how to hide, how to craft.
But he had never taken a life before.
Liana could see the young human trembling as he held the knife, unlike Al'Dan she did have prior knowledge of having to kill, she knew how to take a life. Her father had prepared her for that long before he died.
But before she could walk towards him, Bul'Vyr put a hand on her shoulder. Shaking his head to her before he approached Al'Dan from behind.
The Sapphire hunter put his hand on Al'Dan's shoulder, kneeling down beside him.
"I…I don't know if I can do it" Al'Dan said, his voice trembling.
"…I understand. The first time is always the hardest" Bul'Vyr replied.
The old hunter reached out and held Al'Dan's hands in his own. Clasping his scaled, clawed hands around the Al'Dan's softer human hands.
"As a hunter, you must learn to take life. It is our duty to take lives to continue to cycle of life. We hunt so that others can improve, we hunt so others can evolve, it was one of the reasons my people hunted yours in the past" Bul'Vyr said, Al'Dan shooting Bul'Vyr a fearful look as he brought up that unfortunate truth.
"Yet here you are, my apprentice. The deaths of those before you have tempered your species to produce ones such as you, ones who are stronger, smarter, better adapted to the ways of the universe. This creature is just another link in the chain of life, you must deliver it to the all-mother" Bul'Vyr whispered to the young human.
"Our lady Paya, all lives return to her at the end of all things. Cetanau is the reaper that brings life to her, while she is the keeper and carer of life. We hunters are the deliverers of Lord Cetanau, you will be the first Ooman to do their will" Bul'Vyr whispered.
Al'Dan knew that his master was not the most religious of Yautja, and neither was he. But all hunters respected the cultural beliefs of their society, and that included the cycle of life enforced by the beliefs of their gods.
Al'Dan took a deep breath.
"I...I'm ready master" Al'Dan whispered.
Bul'Vyr nodded before reaching out with one hand to keep the creature steady. Al'Dan pressed the tip of the blade against where its heart would be, Bul'Vyr still holding his hands in one of his own.
"Quick and painless…this is the way it is done" Bul'Vyr whispered.
The young human and his Yautja mentor thrusted the knife deep into the chest of the feline, its eyes widening in a second before any trace of life left its eyes. The feline went limp from the snare, its crimson blood dripping to the floor.
Al'Dan pulled the knife from the creature's chest. The shaking had ceased and the blood of the creature staining his hands.
"Your first kill…never forget this moment" Bul'Vyr knelt down in front of Al'Dan and put both hands on his shoulders.
The sapphire hunter held Al'Dan's hands and wiped the blood from them. Staining his fingers in the still warm blood of the feline.
"In my old clan…we would wear the blood of our first kill…let the strength of their soul seep into our flesh as a constant reminder of the moment we became a predator. It would honour both Liana and I if you would allow me to do this" Bul'Vyr asked.
Al'Dan had never heard Bul'Vyr speak like this. This didn't sound like the tough skinned, brutally honest teacher he had gotten used to over his previous years of training. His tone was soft and caring, his face wasn't judging but was instead supportive. And the look in his eyes were like the looks he would receive from his mother and father.
"I would be honoured master" Al'Dan whispered back.
Bul'Vyr smiled, so did Liana as the old hunter wrote ancient Yautja symbols on Al'Dan's face in the blood of his first kill. it only took Bul'Vyr a minute to do, but to all three present it seemed like a lifetime had passed.
Al'Dan had never felt so full of confidence as his master marked him with the blood of his first kill.
Liana felt like she was seeing her friend evolve, progress to a higher point in his life.
Bul'Vyr felt nothing but pride in his apprentice as he marked his skin with the blood. It took courage to take a life, and even more to accept one's role in life as a hunter. Bul'Vyr thought to himself.
Was this the pride that Kal'Dan felt?
Was this the pride his brother felt in Liana?
Was this the pride of a father?
Once Bul'Vyr finished he took a long look at Al'Dan. Liana walked around to get a good look at her fellow pupil. The blood on Al'Dan's face was the work of an artist, the language of the Yautja adorning his face, accenting his human features.
"You look good, it suits you" Liana smiled at Al'Dan. The young human smiling back.
"Another step towards your hardest task, my apprentice" Bul'Vyr smiled before reaching out and ruffling the human's hair.
The night skies shimmered with stars, the night giving the promise of what was to come. Since the dawn of humanity, the human race had looked up at the stars in reverence of what may be up there. Whether or not they were alone.
As of this moment Al'Dan did not have those thoughts. He knew he wasn't alone, he knew he may have been a human in blood and body, but in his heart and soul he was a Yautja. Blood and genetics be dammed he was a Yautja, and he was not alone.
Sitting around the campfire with his mentor and the girl he considered his best friend, the young human felt like the word 'Ooman' simply did not apply to him anymore. The dried blood on his face would have made a human feel sick or dirty, but not him. The dried blood made him feel proud.
It made him feel like he belonged.
"Something the matter Al'Dan?" Bul'Vyr asked as he poked the fire with a twig to keep it burning.
"No master. Why would you think that?"
"You haven't stopped smiling since we got back" Liana chuckled.
"Just happy is all" Al'Dan replied.
The three sat around the fire until their meals had finished cooking. The flesh from the feline creature as well as the flesh from several other creatures that Liana and Bul'Vyr had caught during the time between Al'Dan's first kill and returning to the camp.
Once the three began digging into their food, Al'Dan had a passing thought. Something he had forgotten to ask Bul'Vyr a while ago.
"Master, do you mind if I ask you a question?" Al'Dan asked.
"Go ahead boy, I'll answer it" Bul'Vyr replied, not looking up from the roasted leg he was chewing on.
"How did you know my brother?"
Everything went silent the moment Al'Dan asked that question.
The only sound that could be hear was the crackling of the campfire. Bul'Vyr put his food down and his expression seemed to change from one of content to one of guilt.
"I suppose I should have seen this coming. It was only a matter of time" Bul'Vyr sighed, wiping his mouth clean and looking up at Al'Dan.
"When I said that you were the first apprentice I had taken…I lied. You are the second. The first apprentice I had was your brother, the other Al'Dan" Bul'Vyr explained, clasping his hands in front of him.
"Your older brother was all I looked for in a learner, he was strong, intelligent, swift and had skill to spare. If ever there was a hunter I wanted to take under my wing it was him, even at his young age I could see his potential" Bul'Vyr smiled with fondness, remembering his former learner.
"He took my teachings like a fish to water, every skill, every strength a hunter should have he took in. He was the pride of the clanship, a symbol of what a Yautja hunter should be, and when it came to the trails…my you should have seen him" Bul'Vyr continued, smiling with nostalgia.
"The tournament?" Al'Dan asked.
"The tournament of Cetanau. It is a special event in our species, while some clans would allow the anointment of a hunter to be decided by the claiming of a Kainde Amedha skull. The Tournament would allow young hunters to prove their skill, strength and courage in a set of one on one fights against each other and young hunters of other clans. The Dark Blades especially excelled in these tournaments" Bul'Vyr explained.
"Members of all the clans would gather, along with Elders of each clan in order to observe the tournament. Even the High Elder and the Yautja King himself would attend to judge the hunters based on their performances. Even if a hunter would lose, if he or she had proven themselves to be worthy would be anointed as Hunters" Bul'Vyr further explained the tournament.
"And what of the winner?" Al'Dan asked.
"The winner would be anointed by the King and High Elder themselves, be given a weapon of the highest calibre and be bestowed a title to be known by. I myself won the trails when I was still part of the Uin'Ava clan, I was little more than 10 years older than you. I earned the title of Bul'Vyr Sapphire Hide" Bul'Vyr smiled.
"Was it easy?"
"Easy!? I broke a third of my ribs, shattered my pelvis and got my right arm yanked out of its socket. Not to mention I couldn't piss straight for five weeks after that fight. Then again it was worth it" Bul'Vyr chuckled.
"Your brother. When he entered the tournament, he was doing our clan proud. Our clan had never gotten as far as the semi-finals of the trails. But your brother had resolve, he fought his way through every hunter put against him. He even made it to the final round against a member of the Dark Blades, a brute about twice his size" Bul'Vyr explained.
Now the Dark Blades had a reputation for bieng the elite, the best of the best when it came to Yautja clan hunters and warriors. Most of the Yautja Monarch's bodyguards were Dark Blades as were most hunters with anointed titles. Then there was the fact that Dark Blades held the record for most victories at the Tournament of Cetanau.
"How did he do?"
"He ultimately lost, but not before he shattered his opponent's orbital bone, snapped two of his mandibles, broke his left arm and ruptured his spleen. The look on Al'Dan face afterwards was one of best I had ever seen. This was the final fight of the tournament, everyone doubted your brother but time and time again he went in, fighting like the hunters of old, for every vicious strike the Dark Blade hit him with, Al'Dan would go in with fire in his eyes. By the end…he was laughing" Bul'Vyr began chuckling to himself.
"I don't know if he was delirious or not, but the look of fear on that Dark Blade's face was priceless" Bul'Vyr chuckled.
"I wish I could have known him" Al'Dan replied.
"I'm sure he would have loved you. When your brother El'Dan was born, I remembered that he went insane, he couldn't stop talking about his new little brother, how he was going to teach him all about the universe, how he was going to be the best big brother that had lived. I had trouble getting him to train at all once El'Dan started crawling" Bul'Vyr smiled.
Al'Dan loved what Bul'Vyr was telling him. His parents rarely talked about his older brother, so hearing about him only enhanced the reverence Al'Dan felt for his deceased brother. The stories Bul'Vyr told also made Al'Dan realise how well his mentor knew the brother he never met.
But then the dreaded question came into Al'Dan's mind. The inconvenient question that lingered in the young human's mind.
"How did Al'Dan die?" Al'Dan asked. The strange feeling moving through his gut as he referred to his brother by their shared name.
"It was…about a month before your parents found you. Al'Dan and I were hunting on a dense jungle planet, tracking a large predator similar to what Oomans would tall a T-Rex. But when we tracked down our quarry we found that we were not the only ones hunting on the planet. A Black Yautja named Kal'Khan had killed our prey, it was only inevitable that we would get caught in a fight when he fired at us" Bul'Vyr took a second to regain his composure as the memories flooded back.
"I failed to notice the other 7 Black Yautja hunters in the trees. We were outnumbered and outgunned, I managed to kill 3 before Kal'Khan drove his wristblades into your brother's back like a coward" Bul'Vyr spoke, clenching his fists so hard it drew blood.
"I somehow managed to get Al'Dan out of there and back onto the ship…when that happened they stopped hunting us…they must have thought it wasn't worth losing more men for a single trophy" Bul'Vyr's eyes uncharacteristically began to water.
"I…I couldn't get him back to the clanship in time. His wounds were too deep for first aid…there was so much blood, so much blood. I tried my best to stabilise him but no matter what I tried he just kept bleeding" Bul'Vyr quickly wiped his eyes.
"…the first thing your parents saw when we returned was me…carrying his corpse, covered in his blood" Bul'Vyr's voice broke as he finished his story.
Now Al'Dan's parent's comments made sense, now he understood why they hated Bul'Vyr and resented him.
Now Al'Dan understood what his parents meant, why his mother was so aggressive towards him.
"For all these years, I have had to live with the guilt of what I did. I lead him into that bloodbath and he paid the price for it. I could only apologize to your parents so much until they decided to take vengeance in their own hands…I'm sure you know the rest of the story" Bul'Vyr replied, hanging his head low.
The old hunter had never showed shame amongst Al'Dan or Liana before. It was a rare sight to see him show such emotion, then again it did speak volumes of Bul'Vyr and the first Al'Dan's master-student relationship. There may have been a time that Bul'Vyr wasn't the same hard-skinned hunter that he was today.
"It wasn't your fault, uncle" Liana said softly putting her hand on her uncle's.
"Yeah, there was no way you could have known" Al'Dan tried his best to reassure his teacher.
"Well, it's all in the past now. No use in crying over it" Bul'Vyr took a deep breath before recomposing himself.
"Once you two have finished eating, go get some sleep. You'll need it for our next few days" Bul'Vyr said as he stood up and walked away from the fire.
Al'Dan and Liana were left sitting at the fire, besides one another. Both of them were a little stunned at the display that Bul'Vyr had put on in the last few minutes. It was no wonder he was so guarded when it came to emotional attachments. He had learned that if you let someone in, the more it would hurt when you lost them.
"I never knew" Liana spoke up. Implying that she somehow withdrew information from Al'Dan.
"I know, I just…I had to know. I've spent my whole life wondering what he was like. I guess this was all a bit much for one night" Al'Dan replied.
"Didn't your brother know him?" Liana asked, referring to El'Dan.
"Nah, El would have been too young to really know him. El's only a few months older than I am, by the time my parents brought me to the clanship he had only learned to crawl on all fours" Al'Dan replied.
"Well, at least you still have one brother" Liana smiled.
"I wouldn't trade him for the world. By the way, while we are talking family I always wondered, why doesn't Bul'Vyr have red dreadlocks like you and your father did?" asked at the end of his reply.
"My father and Uncle Bul'Vyr shared the same father, but different mothers. My grandmother was a part of the Uin'Ava clan, but Bul'Vyr's mother was a member of the Swift Edge clan, your clan. Bul'Vyr told me that his mother died when he was a pup, so he barely knew her, but once he came of age he wanted to reconnect with his roots" Liana explained.
It made perfect sense. Many Yautja with bloodlines belonging to more than one clan would often move from one clan to another when they wished to. Seeing as their species was much more endangered than they had been in previous centuries, it was only natural to be more lenient towards clan emigration.
The Human/Yautja war along with the ongoing genocide that the Yautja species were suffering from their Black Yautja cousins had caused many millions of Yautja to lose their lives. In this point in history, the population of Yautja was much lower than it had been in a very, very long time. many clans over the years had went extinct, with the exception of Liana and Bul'Vyr the Uin'Ava clan was one of those clans.
"Do you have any siblings?" Al'Dan asked, now they were talking about family.
"No, just my mother and father. My mother died shortly before I came here, my father…well, you know" Liana replied with a sad tone.
"I…I'm sorry, I didn't mean to bring that up again" Al'Dan replied.
"No, No its fine. I mean, we have both lost loved ones. Uncle Bul'Vyr was all I had left until you came along. The blushing Ooman sitting beside me in class" Liana smiled.
"Hey, I wasn't blushing" Al'Dan quickly retorted, trying to cover his ass.
"I'm not the same naïve girl that I was back then, Al'Dan. I have researched Oomans since we met, you were blushing…but don't worry, I find it cute" Liana winked, causing Al'Dan's face to burst out in bright red.
"See? You're doing it again!" Liana giggles, pointing at Al'Dan's face.
The human and his Yautja companion continued to laugh and joke, unbeknownst to them Bul'Vyr was standing behind one of the nearby trees, listening to their conversation and their display of bonding. The old hunter smirked to himself, Al'Dan was a great apprentice, better than he expected him to be. And Liana seemed happy, for the first time in a long time.
Bul'Vyr looked up to the stars and thought to himself.
'She'll be alright brother…she has someone looking out for her'
Yet again, sorry about taking so long, I just hope you guys enjoyed this chapter.
Please let me know what you thought about this chapter in a review (remember, THE LONGER, THE BETTER!)
Next chapter I will be introducing quite a few things I have been itching at developing and showcasing since I started writing this story. Things like festivals, the Tournament of Cetanau, new characters and some old character (well…I say old, but let's just say that those of you that love the old Preds in the films and a certain…Scared, faced Predator from a jungle of concrete will be making appearances)
NOTE: Yeah, I am using Swift Edge as the name of Al'Dan's clan. I realize that I have a nasty habit of leaving Yautja clans unnamed, and seeing that Dark Blade is a clan name, why can't Swift Edge be one?
In order to get your reviews to be a bit lengthier its time I bring back something I really liked doing early on in my writings…a question to ponder on: WHO WOULD WIN IN A STRAIGHT UP FIGHT? A BLACK YAUTJA (SUPER PREDATOR) OR AN ENGINEER? Let me know what you guys think.
Thank you all for reading. I shall see you guys next chapter, and if not, then the next chapter of Asclepheus (which will be the next to be updated)
Dakkaman777 signing out.