thededfa:

While there are no scientific studies that can provide a concrete answer to this question, anecdotal evidence and the vast amount of sentient species asking this question leads us to hesitantly answer that: While human aggressiveness is not contagious, beings that spend a lot of time around a human may begin to show a certain confidence and recklessness beyond their norm. This change is even more pronounced in beings that form close bonds with a human, and seems to be permanent.

Leader Nashini twitched her tail irritably and logged her personal anecdotal evidence to the mainframe for the Homeworld scientists to log. The answer was vague and unreliable without scientific backing, but for now it was worrisome. So far Crew Huhui was the only being on the ship affected by the human’s…. recklessness, but how long until the rest of her crew were affected? Although, from a pure efficiency standpoint, Huhui was performing much better than their counterparts. But the…

There was a shriek followed by a loud laugh from the corridor. Probably Huhui dropping from the ceiling onto the human to startle them. They were going to get themselves killed. Nashini just knew it.

A notification from the communication station pulled her from her dark musings and she trotted towards the helm quickly. The communication officer ducked their head respectfully gestured towards the comm station.

“A hailing from a passing ship self identified as Mike’n’Mike.”

She wiggled into place and stood on her hind legs before opening the feed. “This is Leader Nashini of the Space Freighter Unia hailing from Homeworld.”

There was a moment’s pause before a green Muria appeared on the feed. “This is Co-Captain Mikel of the Exploration Ship Mike’n’Mike. We’d like to ask if you are open to trade.”

“Just a moment.” Nashini said and glanced at the cargo log that Crew Huhui had provided before she had even asked. “We have some rations, luxury items, and biological cargo that is open for trade.”

Co-Captain Mikel turned on the visual feed and seemed to converse with someone off screen. They turned back to the screen and raised their blue crest in excitement. “We have maps of several fringe world systems, some valuable data on habitable worlds, and scientific samples from unclaimed planets. Are you willing to trade?”

Leader Nashini barely suppressed a full body wiggle of joy, those were very valuable, very marketable! “We are willing to trade!” Her tail lashed out of the camera view. She glanced at the docking report that Huhui had again provided without prompting (what were they doing on deck anyway?) “If you would dock at airlock 3B, you may board and we will begin negotiations.”

Co-Captain Mikel glanced off screen again as if listening to someone, then hop-nodded. “That is acceptable. We will see you in a few.”

The feed cut and Nashini rested back down on all four hind legs. She cocked a head at Huhui, who was gazing at the proximity maps with widened pupils and forward whiskers.

“Crew Huhui, why are you on deck? You are an accountant.”

Crew Huhui’s ears flicked back in embarrassment but they respectfully looked a little to the left of Nashini’s eyes and said, “Human Crew Jayne remarked once that having a variety of skills made a being valuable in many situations. So I am currently under training for Communications and Navigation.”

Leader Nashini’s ears swiveled in confusion. Multiple classifications was…. practically unheard of. “Well… I commend your enthusiasm for your job.”

Crew Huhui gave a quiet purr of happiness.

“Summon Crew Jane if you would, I would like them and you to accompany me to negotiate with Co-Captain Mikel.”

Crew Huhui nodded and raced off in a quick but entirely undignified manner and Leader Nashini trotted at a much more civilized speed towards meeting room 3B.

By they time she arrived Crew Jane and Crew Huhui were already waiting with tablets and a pitcher of water in the room, and the decontamination chamber showed that two lifeforms were about to enter.

Leader Nashini had just settled at the head of the table when the door opened and- gods past and present help her- another human ducked through the door. He glanced around the meeting room suspiciously, before nodding at Crew Jane and letting Co-Captain Mikel bounce out of the decontamination chamber.

They settled at the opposite end of the table and the human bared their teeth. “Hello, I Co-Captain Michael.”

Crew Jane barked out a loud but short laugh, which relieved Nashini’s sudden fear at the aggressive greeting. Nashini swiveled an ear towards her in question. The human obliged the non verbal question and leaned over to quietly murmur, “The ship is named after them both, Micheal and Mikel to Mike’n’Mike.”

Nashini didn’t quite understand the humor, but Crew Huhui looked just as confused, so maybe it was a human thing.

Co-Captain Mikel perched on a seat and ruffled their feathers to look bigger. “May we begin?”

Leader Nashini slid a tablet with the available cargo list over to pair. “If you would just tap the items you want, my accountants can begin compiling an agreeable trade.”

Co-Captain Michael slid a similar tablet to Crew Huhui and spoke a few strange words to Crew Jane. Crew Jane bared her teeth and replied in the same language, something that made Co-Captain Michael chuckle but lean over Co-Captain Mikel’s shoulders to look at the trading tablet.

Crew Huhui showed Nashini a quick compilation of things they found and she curled her tail under the table to keep it from flicking. The Discovery Rights to an entire Mining Class planet! That was worth her entire ship’s contents alone, and probably her ship as well! She selected the Discovery Rights and the map data and slid it back across to the odd pair, they probably wouldn’t agree to that much, but Nashini could find the planet on her own if she needed to. Co-Captain Michael raised his eyebrow at the items selected and murmured to the Muria in his odd language. The Muria hushed him with a clicking noise and re fluffed their feather before speaking to Nashini.

“Do you have live plants, cuttings, or seeds?”

Crew Jane nodded and spoke over her Leader, pointing out a few items on the tablet. “We also have some equipment for agriculture in space, I don’t know what you’d need them for, but there’s artificial sun light that can be calibrated to 7 different sun types, atmospheric bubbles, and chemical additives to mimic the native soil and water needs of most datafied planets.”

The Human and Muria conversed in a clicking, whistling language before sliding both tablets across to Leader Nashini. She couldn’t suppress the surprised mrriirp the data caused. They were willing to trade the Discovery Rights and map data to an entire Mining Class planet for… for… What was that human phrase? For peanuts!

She carefully signed the agreement and sealed with with her biometric data and flicked her whiskers forward. “It is an absolute pleasure doing business with you. If you would like, you can leave your communication data with Crew Huhui and send us requests. We would be happy to add your ship to our trading partners.”

Mikel chirped a triumphant noise at the human and raised her wings and crest in a decidedly aggressive manner, but the human just raised their hands in a peaceful gesture and laughed.

Nashini watched the human back down from the being half their size and decided that humans were just too weird.

Co-Captain Michael leaned forward and said in coarse Common, “We would be happy if become trade partner. Good money for both, yeah?”

Leader Nashini agreed and they exchanged information quickly. That done, Human Michael lunged towards Human Jane and they bumped into each other with a thump that had Nashini scrambling backwards out of their reach as they wrapped their arms around each other and squeezed picking each other up and talking in their odd human language as they tried to toss the other to the ground. The Muria listened with her head cocked before settling her wings on her back comfortably.

“They are litter mates, as you’d put it.”

“Then… Why are they attacking each other?” Leader Nashini’s ears were clamped against her head.

“They are playing.”

Nashini watched the humans a bit closer and saw, that yes, they were playing, much like younglings would pounce and scuffle as kits, but these humans were almost 6 umrat tall and adults! She shrunk back and fled, in a dignified manner, at a crunching noise and an, “oops” from Crew Jane. She was not dealing with this right now. She was going to celebrate the deal of a lifetime with an entire bottle of crema and some imported ‘catfish’ from Terra. Crew Huhui could deal with the humans.

Huhui backstory Huhui part 4
Mikel Part 1, Part 2, Part 4

About C.A. Jacobs

Just another crazy person, masquerading as a writer.
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