Tales From The Void2 Contest
Title: Fighting for Survival
Word Count: 3,526
Summary: Crash landing, Emmett and his crew brought what could be Earth's destruction. Fast growing vegetation and violent beasts – can Isabella help Emmett fight against them and save the island and Earth? Better yet, can she love an alien from another planet?
Warning: Swearing, violence and other things that come from space and go bump in the night.
Captain's Log: Day 1365
I don't know how much time I have. The crew has gone into mass hysteria and insanity. We are close to a small planet that is much like our own: water, vegetation…."
"Captain, they are breaking through!" a female screams in the background over the blaring alarms.
"I'm afraid… ship will crash land. I hope, with all my might … the explosion from our ship's core will do no damage … The vegetation from Siron … will surely and hopefully … burn … the ship. IF there is life … pray to the goddess to have mercy on their souls.
Grunting, Isabella sat up and rubbed her head. She was under a pile of rubble in her home with no recognition about what just happened. Looking around, she saw that the majority of her beach home was destroyed and gone. The house next to hers was in a worse state of devastation. It was completely leveled.
"Isabella!" a voice called frantically from outside.
Her head snapping to the side, she saw her neighbour Ben. His face was dirty and clothes ripped as he struggled to make his way into her home.
"Ben," she rasped out, her voice hoarse from dehydration.
Relief flooded Ben at hearing his neighbour's voice, alive, if only slightly coherent, but clear of any form of pain. It strengthened his determination to get to her. He had woken up an hour ago in his shelter. His home was now complete rubble, and he also had no recognition of what happened.
There was no power and no sign of a storm, but everything was completely destroyed. Even the high rises of the city were demolished, plumes of dark smoke rising high in the air and blocking out the sun.
"Ben, what happened?" Isabella asked, her eyes darting around as she struggled to lift the beam from her form.
"I don't know. I woke up in my shelter, and then nothing. I don't know why I was there or what happened." He grunted while trying to lift the beam from his best friend's legs.
"I remember - I remember…Panic. That's what I remember: panic." Isabella struggled to get out, her mind foggy. She could only remember panic, being panicked but not the reason why.
Thinking, Ben nodded. "Me too."
After a few more attempts, Ben finally managed to lift the beam. Isabella quickly pulling her legs away just as his grip slipped. The beam crashed to the floor with a loud bang followed by a crack and groan of the floor where it landed, shaking the house and the foundation. Isabella's home was constructed of large beams, hardwood, and glass. It was very open and had the best view of the beach at night, the stars twinkling overhead.
"We need to gather supplies. Is there anything salvageable at yours?" she asked Ben, her eyes looking out the huge, gaping hole.
"No. I looked quickly before coming to find you. Nothing but the bag I have on my back is of any use," he replied sadly, his eyes looking out at the ocean and not at his home.
Isabella and Ben grabbed a few large backpacks and filled them with water, canned food, clothing: any necessities that were useable. With a sigh, Isabella opened the safe in her closet and emptied it of all its contents. She had a funny feeling that it would be vital.
"Uh, we might need some form of protection," Ben told her, his fingers twisting and untwisting together, showing he was nervous. He hated violence–anything related to violence.
Cocking a brow at him, she turned back to her closet and lifted up a few floorboards. She had learned to hide her weapons long ago from her father. He was the chief of police in Forks, Washington. She herself was a gun enthusiast, or rather, she loved weaponry in general. Plus, her last boyfriend was obsessed about doomsday and preparing for it.
She strapped the hidden bow to her back and, while grabbing the quiver from under the floor, she heard Ben come in.
"Holy... Bella, are you secretly an armoury?" Ben gasped, slightly horrified as he took in the massive hole in the floor. It was filled to the hilt with weaponry and all kinds of other things.
Snorting, she looked up at Ben and handed him a gun. "Jake was obsessed with doomsday prepping, remember?"
"Ah, yes. Mr. The-world-is-going-to-end-soon." Ben snorted while shaking his head. "Though he thought zombies, not a strange blackout and then this," he said sourly, gesturing to the hole and, inevitably, his home.
"Here, take these and put them in your bag," she told him, chucking over boxes of bullets and then closing the hatch hidden under the floorboards once more.
Grimacing, he caught the boxes and shoved them into the backpack at his feet. He shoved them till they were practically at the bottom of the bag.
Double checking to make sure she had everything, Isabella grabbed a photo of her and Charlie before walking out of the house. She dared not to look at what her house had become, or the damage beyond what she'd already seen. However, what she saw on the outside shocked her to the core. Nearly every house was collapsed, flattened, or slanted in some way.
"It goes to the City as well. Everything is flattened. It looks like the City is the centre of the destruction," Ben told Bella when he stepped to her side.
Nodding, Isabella scanned the houses. "Let's see if there is anyone that needs help."
Before they even got down their little street, they could hear a cry for help. Running quickly, they raced toward the noise, their hearts racing as they came up to the small house where they knew two children and their mother lived.
"SOMEONE HELP! PLEASE!" Fear gripped them as they heard Angela's voice filled with panic.
Her house was collapsed on one side, the other dangerously close to falling. Acting quickly, they hid their bags in the shrubbery, just in case someone came along and tried to steal their supplies. They weren't too sure how long it had been since the blackout, since they themselves blacked out. Half the houses on the block had some small amount of shrubbery already growing in the middle. Not a lot, but some, and as they looked closer toward the city, the view got thicker and denser with wildlife.
Grabbing what they could, they quickly moved things out of the way, struggling with some fallen housing foundation.
"Ben, she's trapped here," Isabella called out, her voice strained as she struggled to lift the bookcase from her friend's back.
Grasping the edge of the bookshelf, he looked at Isabella. "On three. One… Two… THREE!"
They both managed to lift the bookcase with grunts, giving Angela enough room to roll out.
"Thank you. I woke up an hour ago, but I just couldn't move," she cried out, hugging them both.
"Angie, where are the twins?" Isabella asked softly, concerned.
"They went to Japan to be with Ben for a few weeks. Hopefully they are okay," she tells them, her worry clear in her voice. Relief flooded Ben and Isabella quickly, their shoulders sagging with it.
Emmett awoke, his body wracked with spasms and slight pain. His hands push down on the gravel, crunching several rocks, glass, grass blades and dirt. Lifting his body up, his eyes widened as he took in the destruction around him. A small part of his ship lay 100 feet away, the one part of the hull he was in. However, it was the destruction of the wooden homes around him and the massive growth of vegetation that stunned him the most.
The destruction was vast, Siron's fast growing vegetation already working its way into the earth, slowly and invasively growing over the land and everything on it.
"Em…Em…mett." A strangled gasp from his left caught his attention. His hearts jumped, constricting in his chest when he took in the gruesome scene before him.
"Oh, Goddess…" Emmett choked out when he saw Liam's mangled form. "I can fix it… I can help," he sobbed, crawling to his co-captain's side.
"N…o Emmett… too… broken… dying." Liam coughed, blue blood splattering over Emmett's form as his body wracked in spasms. Liam had collided with several trees, cars, and even a house when they crashed. All four arms were broken, and his body was twisted in a way that it shouldn't be. He was on his last life. One of his hearts had already stopped.
"No… no. no. NO!" Emmett sobbed, his fists pounding into the earth below.
"Sh... find... Peter... He went... That way." Liam coughed, lifting the two good arms and pointing toward where the destruction and vegetation grew thinner.
"I will stay with you until... Until your heart stops, my friend, my brother," Emmett whispered, taking two hands in his.
"Be careful… two armed… aliens…my friend; brother." Liam gasped and coughed more before finally, his heart gave out, his body sagging. Tears tracked down Emmett's face as he pulled Liam close to him, his body wracked with sobs.
Slowly and carefully, he rose to his feet and placed Liam carefully on the grass before going to collect some debris.
Piling it all together to make a semblance of a bed, he turned, lifted Liam off the ground, and then gently placed him on the pyre.
"May the Goddess find your soul and give you peace," Emmett whispered to his friend before setting the pyre afire with the two shards of flint attached to his lower wrists.
As the fire burned, Emmett looked around as he ran to the chunk of ship that he knew held some gear, cringing every time he saw a dead body of the aliens that occupy the planet. Liam was correct, though; they only had two arms, not four.
Jumping into the ship, he grabbed his carry bag with necessary items such as weaponry, food supplies, potions, and of course, his long leather duster jacket. Pulling it on, he folded his lower two arms across his front, each hand grasping a weapon that was in the holsters on his side. Looking up at the darkening sky, he jumped from the ship and took off towards the direction Liam said Peter had gone.
Isabella looked up to the sky and frowned. The sun was almost set. If they continued to walk towards the city to see if the damage was extensive past and beyond it or not, they needed to set up camp for the night. This was a nice area, but when times are desperate, so become the people. They still didn't know how long they had been out for, but since there was no electricity, they assumed all the food in fridges would be no good, lessening the amount people had on hand.
"Guys, we need to stop and make a shelter. It's getting dark, and I don't want to keep moving at night. You know what they say; desperate times creates desperate people," Isabella spoke her thoughts to the others. They had found one more person, a big burly man who didn't speak much.
He was handsome: tanned skin with sandy brown hair in a shade that Isabella has never seen before. It was his eyes, however, that captured her and Angela's interests. They were a very pale green that seemed to illuminate with the sun. He was very cautious around them and the surroundings. It was as if he too knew the dangers that hid in the dark and amongst the human race.
"I can take watch," the male said as he stood, his eyes a dark forest green now as they scanned the darkening streets.
"It's okay. You need some rest. We found you in very bad shape. I'm surprised you are standing and walking about," Isabella stated, giving the male a wary look over.
"Honestly, Ma'am, I would prefer if you would rest. You helped me, possibly saved my life. I owe you," he told her, rubbing his chest slightly with his left arm over the dark leather duster.
Staring at him for a few seconds, Isabella finally nodded. He seemed honest enough, and she was a light sleeper anyway. She would be able to tell if he were to try anything, like kill them in their sleep, before he even stepped foot in the shelter.
"Okay… Wake me if you need me," she told him before entering the small enclosure of broken wall, decking, and tarps.
Clicking his tongue in a tune that was known as a lullaby back on his home planet, Peter began building a fire from the wood around him. Looking around to check for any curious eyes, he sneaked his lower arms out from under his jacket and clapped them together, the flint on his wrists sparking the wood afire. Quickly, he drew his arms back in under the duster, his fingers wrapping around the guns at his sides and leaning against a slightly fallen tree.
The moon was full, and Emmett could hear something coming from behind him. Something coming up quickly; something that sounded very familiar.
One of the beasts that had been on the ship was charging toward him, its murky, grey-blue fur shimmering in the light and slowly turning into sharp points as its orange eyes locked onto Emmett.
Cursing in his native tongue, he took off in the direction he was already heading, toward the slight smoke drifting to the sky.
The beast snarled behind him, pushing all six legs in the ground and springing forward, its massive paws crushing and crunching everything under them as its claws sliced through the earth.
The vicious beast was called a Pocull, and it was a native animal in the wild terrain of Siron. The crew, when removing a patch of land below, didn't read it or the two other creatures. Their bodies morphed with the earth so no mechanical thing could detect its heat signature.
Pushing himself faster, Emmett looked over his shoulder, back-flipping over the beast. His arms came out from under his duster, guns in both hands, and fired. Blue lasers hit the beast, barely doing any damage at all.
Running once more toward the fire, he saw a frame that flooded him with relief, only for it to be quickly replaced with terror as he felt his back being sliced open and heard the beast roar.
Peter shot up, his eyes scanning the darkness at his name. Isabella darted out as she told Ben and Angela to stay quiet. She gave Angela a handgun before she left, knowing Ben couldn't, and wouldn't, ever hurt someone or anything.
"What is it?" she asked the man, her eyes squinting into the dark.
"I heard my name. Something isn't right," he replied, his voice hard, hands clenching the guns. He didn't want to reveal himself to the alien, but if one of his brethren was in danger, then he would have to.
His name was broken from pain, falling from the lips of his Captain. Giving the woman called Bella who stood next to him a look, he took off, his duster falling to the ground as he removed it.
Isabella couldn't contain the gasp as she took in the man's–now known as Peter–arms. Yes, arms. Four of them to be exact.
"Run," he whispered to her before taking off into the night.
She waited for two seconds. "Fuck." She took off after him, the bow in her hands.
It took her a good bit to catch up to him. He was fast and could obviously see much better than her in the dark. Her eyes took in the amount of vegetation that had grown since night fell, but it wasn't that which surprised her. No, it was the massive beast in front of her.
It was large, at least three times the size of a bear, with features of a wolf and a porcupine back. Peter was struggling as he tried to rescue the obviously massive body underneath the monster's paws.
Acting quickly, she pulled an arrow from the quiver and aimed.
"Take a deep breath, Bells, then release as you exhale…" the voice of her father instructed.
Taking a deep breath, she let go of the arrow, the end of the bow just grazing her cheek as it released from the bow's string. It sliced through the air and into the soft flesh of the beast's eye, causing it to rear on its hind legs with a roar, its one remaining eye trained on her as it charged.
Emmett lifted his head at the sudden release of pressure from his spine and the loud growl. He was stunned to see a female alien standing so calm, an ancient weapon in her hand as the beast charged. She was beautiful, even to Emmett. She would be considered a maiden or a goddess in the eyes of his people, alien or not.
"Captain, I need to help her," Peter uttered, his form fidgety as he stood watching in horror.
"Go," Emmett gasped out, pushing his body off the ground only to let it fall as his arms gave way. He watched as Peter dashed forward with a ferocious look upon his face, one that he had never seen before on him but many times on others. This alien had saved his life and had now forever, willingly of course, pledged his allegiance to her, and he owed her his life.
Honour was one thing his kind was devoted to. Without honour, you were nothing.
Isabella let go of another arrow. She was scared, but fear would not help her now. She saw Peter coming, his face one of determination as he fired at the beast from behind. It whirled on him, its tail striking her and sending her flying into a tree.
A cry of pain left her lips as her body collided into the hard surface. Gasping, she got to her knees, using them as leverage as she lifted herself up off the ground. She walked haphazardly toward the fallen male, the one she assumed was Peter's friend.
Her estimation was correct; he was huge, both in muscle and in height. But she wasn't counting on him being handsome, with dark, curly ringlets and bright baby blue eyes.
Dropping to her knees, she shook her head clear, hands shaking as she dug through the bag that she picked up from where the man must have dropped it. She didn't know what half of it was, but a needle and stitching thread she knew.
Quickly sterilizing the needle with a nearby fire, she threaded it and began working. Her hands shook as she stitched the wounds close. Curiously, she was not queasy from the sight of blood, so Bella guessed it must be human. The sight of his blood reminded her more of dye. It was a purple blue, a colour that she couldn't ever remember seeing.
When she was done, her vision began to swim a little. Shaking her head once more, Isabella looked over to see if Peter was okay, surprised when she saw that he was fine and still standing. Peter dove under the beast in a roll, two blades from his wrists shooting up and slicing the soft underbelly of the beast, swift and quick; guts and blood spewed from its stomach like water being released from a dam.
"Thank you," the male sighed out, drawing Isabella's attention back to him.
"You're welcome…?" she replied, finishing off in a question for his name.
"Emmett…" he gasped out through his pain.
"Rest, Emmett, you are safe. Rest," she instructed, her hand covering his eyes slightly as she saw him slowly succumb to the pain.
Looking up at Peter, she frowned. "Can you carry him back to the shelter?"
Nodding, Peter lifted his brother off the ground. "Yes."
"Good. He should wake tomorrow. He just passed out. I can give him some pain medication when we get back. I want answers tomorrow, Peter. For now, though, it can wait." Isabella's voice was hard and left no room for argument as she took off in the direction of the base.
Peter knew she would indeed get her answers. She wouldn't drop them, not after what she saw, and for that, he couldn't blame her. He was also sure Emmett would agree too since she saved his life. This alien, Bella, was a kind woman and deserved her answers. Thinking about it a moment, Peter realised that to her, this was her home planet and he was an invading alien. Shaking his head, he didn't know why she was helping them. After all, she had no obligation to. However, from observation, Peter knew Bella had a good heart–and that, he admired.