I walked the ten centimeter ledge as if it were a wide path and ignored the thousand meter drop to my left. The cliff bent and then I was walking onto a very wide ledge covered in thick moss. In the center was a tent and in front of the tent were three human males around a holographic fire, drinking.
To one side was a collapsible stasis container with six spike-like horns on it. I moved closer and finally stepped into the light. It was still several moments before I was seen. The men jerked and cursed but I did not move as I watched them. One stood, "You scared the hell out of us Kaire."
I turned my head to look at the crate and the horns before looking at him, "You are not allowed to be here human or to kill a Adlerhorn."
An Adlerhorn was a strange mix between insect and reptile. It fed on the moss and lichen on the cliffs and high mountains. The human licked his lips as he swayed, "We uh ... have a permit."
I snorted, "You are on clan territory and they have issued no permit. The Adlerhorn is a respected animal and we do not allow it to be hunted."
His left hand fumbled into a pocket, "I have the permit..."
I was watching more than his left hand and drew my rail pistol as he started to pull his plasma pistol with his right hand. He froze and the other two men stopped moving as they reached for weapons. I gestured, "Go ahead human. I can always throw your body off the cliff to feed the ice worms."
He let the weapon go, "We can work this out."
I moved closer and reached out to grab and spin him. I yanked the pistol out and tucked it under my belt at the back. I pulled restraints and pulled one arm back and then the other. I pushed him toward the edge of the cliff, "Move to the edge and do not turn around."
He staggered towards the edge and I looked at the other two. They were intoxicated but I could see they had some training. I gestured to one, "Go ahead; stand and try it."
He smiled, "With you holding yours?"
I nodded, "It would not make a difference but you know that."
He frowned and slowly stood and carefully pulled the pistol and let it drop. I gestured, "Turn and step back towards me."
He did, but I saw the way he did it and I took another step back. When he spun and started to strike, I was out of reach and lifted my pistol. He froze and licked his lips and I moved closer and growled, "You wish to play with a warrior of Nor?"
His face paled, "They are a myth."
I grabbed his arm and yanked and spun him, "We are real, human."
I put restraints on and stepped back, "Go stand with the other one."
He moved towards the one swaying back and forth. I looked at the last one as he stood. He pulled his weapon and dropped it and moved towards me. I shifted and waited as he came closer. He snapped a kick, but I had moved to the side and caught his foot and yanked it up. He was already twisting and rolling as my other hand dropped my weapon and grabbed his arm.
I slammed him straight down and went with him and struck into the spine. I yanked his head back as my claws dug into his forehead and growled as my other hand caught his throat, "You are not good enough to face even a child of the Nor, human."
I let him go, yanked his arms back, and put him into restraints. I pulled him up, and then moved him to the stasis crate. I shoved him down, "Move and I will break your spine."
I put the other two beside him and searched them. I took their weapons and put them on the sled before sitting. The humans whined and sniveled all night as I looked into the darkness while doing the report. As the hint of the rising sun appeared I pulled my comm from the belt, "This is Killyon. I have the three humans and they have killed an Adlerhorn. I need a retrieval."
"We understand Killyon. A flight will be there soon."
I looked at everything the humans had brought and the grav sled before I packed it. An hour passed before the flyer was hovering over us. They dropped a line and lifted the sled and then took the humans one at a time. I stood and checked around the site before catching the line and letting the grav hoist lift me while the flyer turned and started moving.
Of course the humans were whining again, but the crew had heard it before from many races, even our own. I swung into the flyer and squatted as I looked at the crew. One grinned, "You cost the pilot a hundred credits."
My eyes flickered towards the pilot and copilot, "She bet I would not take the humans?"
She glanced back as her tail caressed her copilot's leg, "I bet it would take longer."
I snorted and looked at the humans, "I had them several hours before the mid of night. They were drinking and made the mistake of trying to use weapons and then attack me."
The crew laughed as I shifted and looked out, "We are not going to your clan warren?"
The copilot looked back, "To the gathering field. The humans have warrens there and the Peacekeepers will take them for judgement."
I shifted and looked at the pilot, "Their warren?"
She grinned back at me, "There are even Human Kaire breeders that have come looking for mates."
I smiled, "And you have a bet that I will seek them out, sister?"
The crew laughed and I looked at the ground far below. Crysta knew me well as did all my litter sibs. Her choice of mate had been a surprise to the clan but the litter knew why. She loved to fly the peaks and his clan lived in them and he was learning to fly. When the flyer slowed and went lower, I turned to the crew, "You can have the sled and their things."
They grinned and the humans protested which made me growl, "You have no right to them now human. You were caught on their clan territory and killed an Adlerhorn. You will be lucky to leave the planet."
The flyer landed and I turned to yank one of the humans to the door. I stepped out and then pulled him to his feet while the other two were shoved out. Two black-and-tan-striped Peacekeepers arrived and pulled the humans into their vehicle. One waited as I transferred my report. She grinned and slapped my arm, "Go look at the human climbing wall Killyon."
I snorted as she climbed into the vehicle before it sped off. I started for the edge of the field and ignored the shuttle carts. Being a retriever for the clans gave a lot of people a chance to know me. When I reached the edge of the field I took a cart to the public exercise area for the smaller clans' isolated warrens.
I left it plugged in as I went to watch the few humans trying to exercise. The climbing wall was where I saw several females. I stretched while looking at the females and their bodies. Two stood out, one had long black hair. The other had long red hair and they both wore very little clothing. which showed their bodies off.
I shifted as a human stopped beside me. He cleared his throat and I glanced at him, "Looking for a human mate?"
I went back to watching the females, "Why do you ask?"
He grinned, "I am looking for a Kaire mate."
I looked at him again before I started to move, "Why did they not build advanced exercise areas?"
He followed me, "These are advanced."
I snorted, "These are for a child."
I moved forward and away as the black haired female slipped and hung by one hand. She did not panic as she swung and then caught a small projection and then managed to get a foot on another. I leaped and swiftly climbed until I was below her and caught her other foot. She looked down and smiled as I lifted and moved the foot to the side.
I climbed up beside her and touched a stone, "These will always seem slippery."
She nodded and I climbed to the top and sat. I looked at the red haired female when she climbed over the edge. She grinned and I gestured and patted the edge beside me, "Sit with me, she."
She blinked and then moved closer and sat and I bent to catch the black haired female's hand and lifted her. She looked at me in surprise since I only used one hand. She twisted and pulled herself onto the edge, "Hi."
I nodded and looked at both of them, "You are here looking for a mate?"
They nodded and I looked into the distance before I sighed and nodded to myself, "I am Killyon Saj Nor."
I stood and pulled them up, "We will walk and tell each other about ourselves and, if we can accept each other, I will claim you."
We used the twisting stairs behind the wall to go down and started to talk. They knew a lot more about Kaire custom than I thought. Gillian was a sim artist; she went to different places and used a neural net to record them. She showed me the neural net in her belt pack. Mostly she did wildernesses and isolated places that most people never saw, let alone experienced.
Nira had actually been a wilderness guild on her world. She took people out into the wild of the planet Mist which was a very dangerous world. I told them of being a warrior of my clan and of being a retriever for the clans in this area. Of course I had to explain what a retriever was, and I did.
I liked the two, and we ate at a small human café on the edge of one of their warrens. I finally turned and led them to a public grav walk. I looked at them and watched how they shifted on their feet. I nodded and my tail stilled, "Gillian Marie Qiunn and Nira Sara Gibbins I see you."
They grinned and Gillian caressed my chest, "Killyon Saj Nor I see you."
Nira nodded as she moved to press against my side, "Killyon Saj Nor I see you."
I smiled, "I claim you."
I turned and pulled them onto the walk and steadied them as I transferred us to the faster center. I nodded to a smaller warren in the distance, "that is the only Nor clan warren on this world."
.... There is more of this story ...