A/N: I hate all the swearing, but… well, these are the StarCraft Terrans. They swear, and I have to deal. Anyway, here's the chapter. Enjoy.
"Spectres. Tell me, you ever see a Spectre? No? Because they don't exist."
A short time later the hovering structure had begun to hover in what looked like the night sky. About then, a female voice emanated from various points in the walls. "We've just breached the ionosphere, Commander. The Hyperion should be in sight any minute."
"Good," said Raynor. "All right, boys. We're almost in the clear. If the Zerg don't attack us for a little while longer, we're home free."
"Come on, sir, please," pleaded one of the men, half joking, half serious. "Tempting fate is one thing, but tempting the Zerg is even worse! Don't, or we're all deader 'n a nuked Baneling!"
There was mixed reactions to this. Some laughed, while others looked nervously out the window, reminded, suddenly of their fears. Are the Zerg those things that attacked us? he wondered. What were they, anyway?
He posed these questions to the Commander. "Yeah, they're the things you were fighting," he replied to Spyro's query. "They're monsters that can mutate into a whole lot o' different shapes, and almost all of 'em are dangerous. Tosh said you wouldn't know about 'em. Wouldn't say why. Mind if I ask?"
Spyro transferred over to his closed channel with Cynder to talk to her about it. "What do you think, Cynder? What should I tell him?"
"I don't think we should tell him we're Dragons until we're certain he won't kill us for that," she mused. "He does look a lot like an Ape, after all. Just tell him we're not from around here. That's true, at least."
Spyro did, and was greeted with a snort of disbelief from one of the troopers. "I really don't think it's likely that they're from outside the sector, Commander, and unless that's the case, they'd know 'bout the Zerg. Somethin's off about all this."
"I'll give you that, Nubston," Raynor said to the one who'd spoken. "But I really don't know what the Hell anyone would gain by being so damn obvious about fooling us. No one in their right mind would believe this story, and anyone in their right mind would know that. So I'm not going to believe it entirely, but I am going to let it pass. And you all better just do the same."
At this point Spyro spoke again. "I swear on the Ancestors, Commander Raynor, I'm telling the truth. We don't know where we are."
"'On the Ancestors'?" said the doubting soldier; Nubston. "You some kind o' Protoss or somethin'? I ain't never heard a Terran swearin' 'on the Ancestors.'"
"Be quiet, soldier, if you're gonna talk about what you don't know the first thing about," said Raynor rather sharply. "First off, none of the Protoss swear like that either, and second, like it or not, dammit, the Daelaam, at least, are our allies now, so you just better get used to treating the Protoss like people."
Spyro's mind was burning. Daelaam. Protoss. The words reverberated in his head, as though he'd heard them before… as though he should know them…
He immediately switched from open to closed channels, and spoke with Cynder. "When he said the words Daelaam and Protoss–" just saying them gave Spyro a strange thrill "–Did you feel anything? As though… as though you knew them from somewhere?"
"No," said Cynder, but her voice was growing excited. "I got that feeling when they said the words Zerg and Swarm! Exactly that feeling! That's really strange."
"Yes… it is…" Spyro replied, pondering. "I wonder what it means."
He tuned back into the open channel to find an argument had broken out. It was likely started between the soldier, Nubston, and his Commander about the Protoss, but it had somehow evolved into Nubston sulking in a corner of the room, Raynor trying to quiet everyone down, and all the others randomly throwing insults at one another for no intelligent reason; save for a few who were on the sidelines, and egging on anyone who seemed to be gaining anything remotely resembling an upper hand.
"Is this how they normally act?" Spyro asked the Commander, who seemed to be taking a break before trying to calm his troops again.
"No," grunted Raynor. "Usually they only do this after they get drunk."
Suddenly, the female voice which had spoken earlier rang out again. "Hyperion in view. We will begin docking momentarily."
Most of the creatures ignored it, but Jim gestured for Spyro and Cynder to come to him. When they reached him, he led them to one of the windows, and said, "Look out. That's the Hyperion."
They did, one by one. Spyro looked out and saw, hovering in front of the stars, what looked like a massive, intricately crafted block. They were rapidly going towards it. The structure they were in was large, it was true, but in comparison with the thing they were hurtling towards, it was miniscule.
"Are we going to hit it?" Cynder asked the Commander with the first traces of panic evident in her voice.
"No," said Raynor, a grin creeping across his face. "We're headed for the hangar. We're going in."
They soon did, too. As the 'docking sequence,' as Spyro heard it called, began, the troopers began to quiet their argument. When the metal doors opened up and down, letting them out into the main hangar, the soldiers had completely quieted.
"Come on, you two," Raynor called to them from a doorway as they stood in the middle of the room, staring around, overwhelmed by all the sheer newness of everything in this world in the sky. "We're headed to the bridge to meet Tosh and the others."
The two Dragons in armor followed him through a corridor and into a small chamber. They remained in that chamber for a time with the door closed, and Spyro could feel that they were somehow rising. The chamber itself was lifting them. The doors opened soon after the motion stopped, and they – after going through one more steel corridor – found themselves in a very different room. There were unarmored versions of the ape-like creatures all around, sitting and working with strange illuminated screen. Dominating the room was what looked like a glowing, three-dimensional diagram of some kind, hovering over a table.
As they entered, one of the beings came over to them. It was wearing a strange, brown bodysuit with glowing red lines shimmering through it in a regular pattern, and its skin was darker than Raynor's. When it spoke they immediately recognized the voice. This was the being which had trapped them in the MageWalkers.
"Ah, good. I was beginning to worry. Thank you for rescuing them, Mister Raynor," said the creature.
"No problem, Tosh," said Raynor, but his eyes were slightly narrowed. "You'd just better have a damn good explanation as to why this feels so much like what happened with Tychus."
"This is very much like what happened with that Tychus," said the darker-skinned one, baring his teeth in a feral grin. "Only difference is this time they're on our side."
Raynor glared at him for a moment, before calling to the room at large, "I'm getting out of this suit. Be back in a couple minutes." He then left the room.
"Follow me, you two. We need to talk," ordered the brown-suited being; Tosh.
"Not until you give us some answers," said Cynder flatly. "Why are you putting us through all this? What do you want?"
"Your questions are delicate, the answers even more so," said Tosh, "I'll answer you when there's fewer prying eyes and ears around. Follow me."
They did, to another, empty room. Then he turned to them. "All right. I know you don't understand what anything around you is, so let me explain. My race is called the Terrans…"
And he began to explain to the Dragons the world and story of StarCraft.
A/N: There. Happy? New chapter. I am burnin' with ideas for future Hierarch books after the main trilogy, but they'll have to wait, now won't they? Now, PRESS THE BLUE BUTTON AND REVIEW!