by Frostfyre

Copyright© 2012 by Frostfyre

Science Fiction Story: What happens when a predator meets poachers in his territory? A NON-CANON Swarm Cycle Universe story.

Tags: Science Fiction   Sci-fi

He loved bars, especially ones like this that did not have the serenity ruined by a talking picture machine. The atmosphere was so intoxicating, with so much life and emotion. Leaning against the bar, he looked around possessively. It was too bad the selection was not better tonight, but there were some prime looking candidates. He had been coming to this bar for years, but no one ever noticed him. It was a college bar with a very transient population, which made things much easier for him. He was careful enough in his predation that his victims were never missed.

Scanning the room, he started to get a curious feeling of unease, like something was about to happen. Suddenly he cocked his head to the side, his long brown hair shifting from the motion. There was an unfamiliar machine smell in the air, and a hum so faint even his ears could barely detect it. Scanning the room, he thought he saw an extremely faint distortion near the ceiling in the center of the room. It had been ages since he had encountered anything so unusual but his curiosity was not aroused, he had more important things to worry about, like his prey. Since whatever caused the distortion was not doing anything, he decided to ignore its intrusion into his territory ... for now.

Just as he was starting to relax and refocus on the people around him, a series of gusts of displaced air swirled around and eight new heartbeats suddenly appeared to his perception. They were like the people around him, but stronger, healthier sounding. Not dulled by the chemical-impregnated glop that people nowadays called food. His interest was instantly aroused. It had been ages since his territory had been violated and he was actually looking forward to asserting his claim to it.

After the eight heartbeats appeared, the air suddenly changed, becoming charged and closed in. The moon light shining in the windows vanished, replaced by a grey barrier spell of some type. Tensing up, ready for anything, he watched for the source of the new heartbeats to reveal themselves. Soon thereafter, a file of very large men and women came out from the back of the bar, herding the employees with them. They were wearing an unfamiliar uniform and each one had some type of cestus or katar in their hand. Unsure of their intentions, he faded back into the shadows, watching them unseen, patiently waiting to see what they would do.

As they fanned out with military precision, one stepped forward and started speaking with a supernaturally loud voice. "Good evening ladies and gentlemen. This is a Confederacy pick-up. Would all sponsors please gather here at the bar. Those interested in becoming concubines stand near the stage. Anyone not interested or eligible for extraction please go and sit by the main entrance."

The big man said a few more things, but what really stuck in his mind was when he said, "With luck, all of the sponsors and their concubine picks will be leaving with us soon so everyone else will be able to resume their interrupted evening." The other thing he immediately noticed was the suddenly increased smell of arousal in the air.

They were poachers and slavers! Even worse, it was his prey they wanted to take with them. That was utterly unacceptable! As the humans started to move in the directions those rival predators commanded, he knew he had to act. Appearing out of the shadows and making the intruders jump, he let his vampiric power flow throughout the room like a cool breeze. The human sheep were instantly frozen in place, and then sat back down in eerily perfect synchronicity, making no further noise or movement. He never considered using his power on the intruders, assuming they would be much too hard to control.

"These are my prey, go elsewhere for your own." He said threateningly.

"What the fuck is going on?" One yelled.

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