Title: Eternal Summer
Chapter: 7 – No Use To Us
Pairing: None Yet (Eventual Grif x Simmons)
Warnings: Swearing, Violence
Summary: Simmons isn’t the only one who’s not completely human.
Author’s Notes: This actually ended up getting written far sooner than I thought it would, because my muse demanded it of me.
Thank you for all the kind words on the previous chapter. You’re all very inspiring and I appreciate the support.
Another one that has to be dedicated to someone… There’s a certain fundamentalist Christian who’s facing down major discomfort to give me feedback and thoughts and help me voice and organize thoughts on the world. He knows who he is and probably appreciates not being mentioned by name. Thanks buddy.
Kaden’s eyes narrowed as the hand caught his shirt, but widened again when the Spartan spoke K’sar. “The human is mine: Pack-brother.” Cian and Jase froze and stared openly, waiting for some signal from him as to how they should take the words. He laughed quietly, then turned to Cian.
“Take a look at him. He’s either one of us or Spartans are learning new tricks. Trained medic is more likely to spot any tricks…” His voice was worried, and the small man joined him. Cian didn’t hesitate and picked up Spartan’s arm. He ran a curious hand up the mans’ arm in a manner like checking for broken bones.
“Complete with scars and claws. He’s the real thing. In bad shape, though.” Casual examination continued, Cian’s composure that of a more experienced hand than his young looks suggested. “You speak English, Kade. Ask the other one what bite his head.”
“I can insult things in English. That’s about it.” Kade laughed slightly, rising to his feet and made his way across the cleaning. With furrowed brow he leaned in and found a few words of English that would work to ask what he wanted to know. “What bite?” The Maroon-armored Spartan looked confused for a moment, then chattered for a second in English quicker than he could follow. Kade understood a grand total of two words: Big and Cat. Jase drifted quietly in the background, circling the clearing and keeping watch.
“Anything?” Cian looked up from the injured Spartan.
“It was big and feline.” Kade shrugged, then turned to Jase. “They left a trail. We should be able to find something in that direction.”
Simmons froze when the Kaelsar snarled two English words that were nearly incomprehensible with his heavy, growling accent into his face. “What bite?” Gray-hair indicated Grif’s prone form, being examined by the smallest of the three Kaelsar invaders.
“Big… Cat-thing with tentacles. Skin was blue. Mean as hell.” Simmons answered the butchered question, not completely sure that he would be understood at all. Those two words had been the first indication that the Kaelsar understood any English whatsoever. The annoyed sigh and headshake verified his fears. A few incomprehensible barked words and the Simmons was left alone with the Kaelsar re-bandaging the claw-wound on Grif’s chest. A half-hour during which the Kaelsar cut down a pair of small saplings followed.
When the pair of Kaelsar returned it was with two MJOLNIR helmets in tow. They had obviously located the spot where the fight had happened. Gray-hair tapped the chest of Simmons’ armor, snapping his attention away from his thoughts. “Rashra bite.” Just as quickly the man turned his attention to the small one. Quick growled words were exchanged. The three Kaelsar moved about with easy familiarity, growling occasionally but mostly working together with an unspeaking grace that suggested they’d been a team for a substantial period of time.
It didn’t take long for them to have Grif on a stretcher, arms bound securely. The lack of response from Grif in response to being moved had Simmons worried. He’d hoped the movement earlier was a hint that Grif was improving, but now he seemed to have worked through the reserves of energy provided by a full night of sleep. Second later the Kaelsar trio was surrounding him, bristling claws and growling while they freed him from the tree and bound his hands behind his back. While the two larger ones lifted the stretcher with Grif on it while the small one looped a rope around Simmons throat. Feeling daring and completely sick of the way he was getting treated he glared. The little one smirked, and jerked the rope. The loop around Simmons’ neck tightened like a dog’s training lead and cut off his air for a split second. Shocked, Simmons just stared at the smirking Kaelsar, who turned and started to follow the stretcher through the trees
By the time the force-march though the jungle came to an end in a small clearing full of wooden buildings the sun was just starting to move past its zenith. Hours of hiking at the pace of those used to the terrain was pushing Simmons beyond the limits of what he was capable of. The thing that kept him going were the firm tugs on the rope around his neck by an annoying kid who was a head shorter than he was.
Size didn’t make a difference as the Kaelsar’s agile fingers tightened ropes around Simmons’ torso. It was another tree he was tied to, but this time his arms were pinned behind his body by the tree, with cords drawn tight at waist and chest. The rope around his neck had been tied to the tree to limit his ability to struggle.
Cian finished the last knot, ignoring the glares from the exhausted Spartan. Then he vanished, heading towards Tysari’s clinic. There, he joined Kade and Jase, who were still dealing with explanations. He tried to join the group unobtrusively, but she noticed. She always noticed.
“You left a Spartan alone in our city?” She was old, in the later part of her eighties, but still a force to be reckoned with. “Is this what you let your pack get up to, boy?”
“If he thinks it’s safe to leave him, then it is.” The confidence was gone from his voice. “It’s fine…”
“Kaden Saris… Spartans are some of the most dangerous warriors that walk any planet. There is one in our city, unattended.” Her eyes narrowed and she made her menacing way towards Kade. Her cane was being wielded as a weapon rather than used in any manner associated with keeping her upright.
Gray eyes searched for an escape while Kade gave ground. Cian slid behind Jase, who was backing away from the situation. “If their any indication of what Spartans are capable of, we have nothing to fear.”
“I decide what dangerous is here.”
Simmons eyes were closed as he did his best to recharge. He was well into his second day on Kael and had yet to get any actual rest. The scuff of rocks and a myriad of high-pitched voices shook him from his attempt to relax.
They were children, a half-dozen of them all in the same age-group. Had they been on earth they’d have been in Grade school. But apparently on Kael they were given the run of the jungle, making them a ragged and feral looking lot. The curiosity from them was palpable as they formed a half circle, chattering with excitement. Then the first one snarled something directly to him. He watched for a few second, listening as the phrase was repeated. Seconds later it was a cacophony, aggressive snarling. The attempts to get a rise out of him were obvious, despite the language barrier.
Taking a deep breath, Simmons closed his eyes in an effort to block out the sounds rising fury. When silence descended it was with such suddenness that something had to be up. Simmons opened his eyes just in time to know which one of them had thrown the rock that bounced off the side of his head. It did mean he also got to see the big gray-haired ringleader from his capture grab the boy by the scruff of the neck and give him a good snarling-at. Gray-hair was followed by the other two from the capture, and an old lady who walked with a cane. It was the old lady that approached him strait off while the kids scampered in all directions, vanishing from sight into houses and down streets.
Her voice was steady, though she shared the growling accent of Gray-hair when she started talking to him. “Our pups are thrilled. It’s not often one has the boogieman trussed up and waiting. Good thing none of them are old enough to have cut-claws.” Her expression was unhappy. “Why have Spartans come to Kael?”
“Accident. Teleporter exploded.” Simmons Answered her question simply, slightly dazed by the blow to his temple. A trickle of blood was running down the side of his face. “Grif and I woke up here.”
“Spartans don’t show up places on accident. Tell me the truth. Why are Spartans on Kael.” Now the demand was becoming angrier, and the growling accent was thickening. Her cane jabbed his armored chest. “Cooperate and you might actually leave Kael.”
“It is the truth. We were standing next to the Teleporter. Sheila shot it. It blew up. We ended up here.” He repeated the story, looking warily at her.
“The truth will tell. The other Spartan will be without the presence of mind to lie for a few days. You’d best hope his pack-claim on you is genuine. If you won’t cooperate, you’re of no use to us.” The old lady had jabbed particularly hard at his chest plate with her cane while she snarled something at Gray-hair, then turned to make her way back into the village.
Gray-hair sighed heavily, quietly growling to the rest of his kidnapping team. As they dragged Simmons off he could only hope that their were no trees wherever they had decided to take him.