2022.01.26 08:58 PKRadiance How are you acquiring Pokémon Legends Arceus?
2022.01.26 08:58 iamnotabot7890 Ship
|submitted by iamnotabot7890 to Blobfish [link] [comments]|
2022.01.26 08:58 coolfrogs365 Email address?
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2022.01.26 08:58 pizzaparty1000 Dylan Alcott last match tomorrow!
Dylan’s last match before he retires is tomorrow! I think there’s still tickets left on Ticketmaster :)
Would love to see his last crowd be as full as possible so please if you can attend get your tickets and support a legend!
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2022.01.26 08:58 SenpaiOuji Do you ever mine with TNT when you're being lazy?
I just finished a big flush mob grinder and had to use up almost all my stones and such. When I was done I had a massive amount of gunpowder so I went to a spot I didn't care about and blew a bunch of stuff up haha. I probably lost a lot of potential blocks in the process but I blew up enough crap that I had a fair amount of stacks of cobblestone, andesite, and such. Anyone else try this before or have any other lazy methods of replenishing your block supply?
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submitted by iamcalifw to TheBinanceNFT [link] [comments]
2022.01.26 08:58 Arnadus [ACA] Acala Token. Price 🔥 +1.74% in 5 minutes
2022.01.26 08:58 KaiserNazrin Another UR Card Points
2022.01.26 08:58 Snekguy Pinwheel | Chapter 1
Please note: this story contains adult content which will be tagged on a per-chapter basis.
The deck beneath my feet shook as the shuttle’s engines pushed it up through the atmosphere, the troop bay lit only by warning strips along the ceiling, the glow of the flames that licked at the craft’s stubby nose bleeding in through the small portholes. Two dozen other recruits occupied the rows of crash couches that were lined up against the walls, buffeted by the turbulence as they clung to the armrests of their seats with white knuckles. Their eyes darted about nervously, their faces lit by the orange glare, all clad in matching uniforms in a shade of Navy blue.
I reached down and checked that my safety harness was secure, tugging it a little tighter around my chest and ensuring that the buckle was properly fastened. This wasn’t my first trip into space, but I hadn’t had time to get used to it yet. I was still muddy, as the Marines and the well-traveled of Earth’s upper echelons referred to those who had spent most of their lives planetside, in reference to the terrestrial soil and dirt that they liked to imagine still caked our boots. Personally, I hadn’t seen Earth in months. I had been spending my days hopping between planets and stations as my fellow recruits and I were ferried to our ultimate destination.
Was I starting to regret joining the United Nations Navy? No, there was a war to be fought, and I wanted to do my part. The day that I had turned nineteen, I had dropped out of agricultural college against the wishes of my father, and I had enlisted in the Navy. Many of my friends had done the same. We had imagined forming a unit together, but before we could so much as protest, we had been sent off around the world to different boot camps. I hadn’t seen any of my comrades since, but I had successfully completed basic training, and today was the final step in my journey. I was finally going to finish my training and become a real UNN Marine.
The colony planet dwindled behind our little dropship as it broke through the upper atmosphere, the shaking abating and the flickering flames fading as the sky beyond the nearest porthole shifted from azure to a dark, velvety black. Stars twinkled, harsher and colder than they had ever looked from the ground. I thanked those stars that there was no weightlessness. That had been one of the least enjoyable parts of the training. The shuttle was equipped with an AG field, generating artificial gravity that would keep us firmly rooted to the deck.
As I looked out into space, frost crystals clinging to the edges of the glass, I saw our ride. Hanging above the curvature of the planet was the jump carrier, a vaguely bullet-shaped spacecraft painted in the traditional ocean-grey, its bulbous hull adorned with blue UNN logos and regalia. At over a thousand feet long and with a mass of a hundred thousand tons, it was one of the largest vessels that the Navy could field. As the shuttle banked, I got a better look at it, the sunlight reflecting off its surface like a beacon.
Along its belly was a forest of railguns that were mounted on flexible arms, intended for ground support and offensive roles in space. Point defense weapons and torpedo bays were spaced out along its curved hull at intervals, its clean lines broken up by rows of launch tubes for fighter craft. On the port and starboard sides were cavernous hangar bays, the shimmering, blue force field that prevented the atmosphere within from escaping into space visible even at a distance. I could see the glowing pinpoints of the portholes along its flanks, as well as the raised bridge, situated atop the craft’s armored hull. At the aft were the giant realspace engines, long jets of hydrogen flame spewing forth as it maneuvered into position.
The ship’s primary purpose was force projection. A fleet with one of these at its head would be able to both capture and defend entire planets. Her crew complement included thousands of Marines who could be deployed to the ground, and it was my ultimate aspiration to be among them.
Carrier Concept Art
As we drew closer, the swarms of vessels that surrounded it came into view, like a cloud of bees encircling their hive. There were transport ships resupplying the carrier, formations of fighter craft and gunships making their way toward her bays, along with a dozen other shuttles identical to our own. We were not the only recruits riding along today. Hundreds of people had made their way here, and we were all heading to the same destination. The carrier was taking us to an orbital station on the frontier of known space, where our Marine training would begin.
I peered out of the window as the pilot maneuvered us toward the ship, and I watched the gaping hangar bay pass us by. We weren’t landing in the bay, then. That meant we would be anchoring to the exterior of the hull. I sat back down in my seat, my stomach lurching as the shuttle flipped belly-side-up relative to the carrier, the thrusters along the craft’s hull flaring as we descended toward it. I felt a rumble pass through the deck as the shuttle mated to the carrier, electromagnets locking it into place like a flea on the back of a giant, metal dog.
A twinge of apprehension marred my excitement as I glanced at my neighbor, his face pale, beads of cold sweat already forming on his brow. We would be jumping to superlight before long.
Another role of the carrier was to drag smaller vessels along in its wake, being one of the few classes of ship large enough to house the nuclear reactors that were required for long-range jumps. The superlight drive would drain the reactors of energy, storing it up and using it to punch a hole in reality. The carrier would then leave our paltry three dimensions of space, pulling all of the ships in its vicinity along for the ride. Faster than light travel was impossible of course, but superlight bypassed the limitations of reality by exiting it entirely, passing into an alternate dimension where there were no such constraints.
Nobody really knew what happened between exit and emergence. Time might flow differently there, maybe the ship became as massless as a photon, or perhaps the two points of space somehow drew closer together. Either way, the vessel would be vomited back into reality a split second later, having crossed a distance of light-years.
There was one big downside to superlight travel. Whatever higher dimension of space the vessel traversed, it was poison to the nervous system. Symptoms included violent muscle spasms, migraines and headaches, blackouts, and what could only be described as temporary insanity.
All of the recruits had undergone superlight jumps to get here, myself included, but none of us was especially looking forward to another one. They said that it got easier with time. Some of the more experienced pilots were barely affected at all, but it certainly didn’t seem that way from where I was sitting.
After a few minutes of excruciating waiting, our fears were realized when the shuttle began to vibrate. The carrier’s superlight drive was charging up. I glanced out of the nearby porthole again, angled down toward the planet in relation to the craft, its grey hull curving away like a steel horizon. I could see a few dawdling support craft burning out of range, along with a large frigate. It was floating lazily in formation beside us, preparing to ride in our superlight wake, no doubt. Its hull was angular and blocky, designed for a low radar cross-section, bristling with hatches that covered torpedo tubes.
Frigate Concept Art
“Jump prep, two minutes,” the pilot announced over the shuttle’s intercom.
There was a flurry of movement as everyone checked their harnesses and inserted clear, plastic bits into their mouths. They were standard issue – the last thing you wanted was to regain consciousness after a jump, only to realize that you had bitten your tongue off. I reached into my pocket and secured my own bit, running my tongue over the smooth plastic as my heart began to race.
The seconds dragged on until, finally, the pilot’s voice came through again with a hiss of static.
“Brace for jump!”
The vibration became a rumbling, then the rumbling became a violent shaking. I was vaguely aware of the hairs on my arms standing on end before it suddenly stopped – as did all of my senses, my perception of time, and I could swear my heartbeat. I couldn’t hear, I couldn’t see, I couldn’t experience anything at all. For a solitary second that dragged on for eternity, I was trapped in a dark grave. I was dead. Light suddenly flooded back into my eyes, my ears filling with the sounds of wailing trainees, my nerves lighting up like a switchboard. I convulsed violently, the straps on my harness digging into my flesh. I tried to open my eyes, but all I saw were blurry shapes, like looking through frosted glass. My brain was muddled. I couldn't remember where I was, why I was hurting. Like crawling out of molasses, my mind slowly started to come together. Pieces of memories came flooding back, experiences, sensations. My vision came back into focus, and then I remembered where I was and what had happened.
I gasped, fully conscious again as the people around me moaned and struggled, a few vomiting up their breakfasts onto the metal deck. I could hear the pilot laughing at us from behind the cockpit door, amused by the chaos. This must be routine for him, but we were still novices.
I spat out my bit, hearing it clatter to the deck as I hit the clasp that would release my safety harness. I could feel the stinging welts beneath my uniform where it had dug into my skin. I must have been straining against my bonds during my unconsciousness, wracked with convulsions like I was having a seizure. My head still ached, and every muscle in my body felt like it was recovering from a nasty cramp.
The Drill Sergeants hadn’t been exaggerating to mess with us, it really was terrible. After every jump, all that I could see in my mind’s eye were the laughing faces of our instructors as they imagined us getting our cherries popped. I stood up from my seat on shaking legs, leaning on the armrest for support, and a few of my compatriots attempted to do the same. Some fell out of their chairs, one of them tumbling face-first into a pool of his own vomit, the laughter from the pilot becoming riotous.
There was a mechanical thud as the shuttle disengaged from the carrier, drifting away from it and reorienting itself in space. I looked out through the porthole to see a dozen craft just like our own detaching, as though the mothership was shedding its scales. They would have been almost invisible against the black backdrop of space was it not for the glare of a new sun, its light distinctly yellower than that of the system that we had just left.
I watched the frigate that had trailed behind us break off, the thrusters along its hull flaring with blue fire as it peeled away. The breach that the carrier had punched in reality was now little more than an expanding cloud of technicolor gas and cosmic dust, spreading out like a miniature nebula, as beautiful as it was strange. It looked like a colorful smear of paint on a black canvass, the residue sparkling in the sunlight.
The shuttle lurched as it began to burn away, and I reached up to grasp one of the handholds in the ceiling as I peered intently beyond the windows. My eyes lit up as I glimpsed it for the first time. There it was, Fort Hamilton.
Its white hull was silhouetted against a gleaming, terrestrial planet that was sheathed in white clouds, its arid surface colored in shades of brown and beige. The orbiting station grew larger as we neared it, until it filled my field of view entirely. My first impression was that it looked like a giant bicycle wheel. There was a central hub that was covered in communications equipment and radar dishes, jutting out into space like antennae, which was connected to a rotating torus via long spokes. The giant, donut-shaped habitat was spinning slowly. It was far too large for artificial gravity generators, so it must be rotating to simulate gravity like a centrifuge.
There were hangar bays spaced at intervals along the thick torus. The same shimmering force fields that I had seen on the carrier were present here, albeit far more massive in scale. It was hard to estimate the size of the station with no point of reference, but there were Navy vessels floating around it like shoals of giant, grey fish. There was another carrier that was dwarfed by the structure, along with several frigates and a cruiser. Some of those bays looked large enough to house a Martian battleship.
My discomfort now forgotten, I looked on in awe as we neared the starbase. The size of the carrier had amazed me, but this was something else entirely. It looked as though a dozen of them could have docked here at once.
Our shuttle pulled up alongside the wheel, matching velocity with its slow spin. The matte white hull rose up like the edge of a cliff, more of its features jumping out at me now that we were closer to it. There were no windows visible, but there were comms arrays everywhere, the armored tiles and tiny pressure doors adding detail to its smooth surface.
The shuttle coasted toward one of the hangars, the aperture growing wider and wider as we neared it, until it swallowed up our tiny craft like the gaping maw of some celestial beast. We passed through the thin, glowing barrier of energy that prevented the air inside the vast bay from venting into open space, and I got a clearer look at the interior.
It more resembled the mouth of an artificial cave than a hangar. Everything was made from the same white material as the hull. The deck was wide enough that three or four of the one hundred and fifty-foot frigates could have docked here side by side, and when I ducked down to get a look at the ceiling through the narrow porthole, I saw that it was a good hundred feet above our heads. The walls were lined with walkways and gantries, some of them extending like the arms of a crane so that they could reach the large ships that would dock in here. Right now, the only craft occupying the deck were more transport shuttles like ours, along with a refueling vessel that looked like a row of giant golf balls contained within a skeletal frame. Fat, thick hoses snaked along the floor, leading out of view as it filled its tanks.
“Strap in, we’ll be landing in a moment,” the pilot announced. I returned to my seat, securing my harness once again, feeling the rumble of the landing gear as they extended from the belly of our little ship. We touched down with a bounce, the gear absorbing the impact. Before the pilot even had time to give the order, we were already up, waiting eagerly for the troop bay ramp to descend. We slung our heavy packs across our backs, carrying all of our gear and what few personal belongings we had elected to bring with us.
The engines powered down, and the landing ramp began to lower, a crack of bright light appearing that steadily grew. I smelled the stale, recycled air that was so common on spaceships and stations, marching down the ramp with my fellow recruits. Our boots hit the deck, our footsteps echoing in the expansive bay as though we were walking inside a cathedral. Everyone’s head was on a swivel, taking in their surroundings. I glanced back over my shoulder, feeling butterflies in my stomach as I gazed at the force field. The thin, insubstantial barrier of energy wasn’t much of a comfort, and I immediately imagined being sucked out into the freezing nothingness. The field would trap the atmosphere, but would allow solid objects to pass through it. It was best not to wander too close. The stories of people tripping and falling into space were probably exaggerated, but it was a distinct possibility if you were careless.
A Staff Sergeant was already waiting for us with a tablet computer clasped in his hand, his rank emblazoned on the breast of his Navy-blue uniform. We lined up in front of him, some of the recruits still unsteady on their feet after the jump, his expression hardening as he examined us. We stood to attention and returned a salute, some more enthusiastically than others, and he began to check our names against a database. After a short roll-call, he gestured to the hangar bay.
“Welcome to the UNN starbase Fort Hamilton, or as we like to call it, the Pinwheel. My name is Staff Sergeant Vasiliev. I see that some of you took the jump harder than others,” he muttered, eyeing a dejected trainee who had drying vomit all over his coveralls. “But, you’ll quickly find that life here can be pleasant, if you follow the rules and do as you are instructed.”
He stowed his tablet computer neatly under his arm, beginning to stride up and down the line of recruits.
“Having completed your basic training on your home planets, you will now begin your Marine training. This is a Coalition starbase, which means that we have many non-human personnel from allied worlds who you will learn to live and work with. Some of you may find this difficult,” he continued, pausing to make eye-contact with one of the trainees. “Others may find it...undesirable, but creating cohesive units that include multiple Coalition species is paramount to the war effort.”
Everyone knew about the Coalition. It was an alliance formed by several alien species with the intention of combining forces against common threats, and humanity was a member. An attack on one was an attack on all Coalition members, and our combined strength could take on any enemy that dared to test us. For twenty years now, we had been at war with the insectoid Betelgeusians, as long as I had been alive. We had ratified the Coalition treaty after, unprovoked, the Bugs had destroyed a colony ship crewed by forty thousand people. It had been humanity’s first contact with an alien species, and we’d had no idea of what was waiting for us in the void. All hands had been lost, and soon after, we had discovered that we were not alone in our struggle. The Coalition had made contact, inviting us to join their alliance, and the United Nations had not hesitated to accept.
The Bugs attacked any habitable planets in their path, with no regard for anything resembling rules of engagement. They bombed cities from orbit and used inhumane chemical weapons in their bid to seize territory, invading with vast fleets and armies. They were a plague, their only desire was endless expansion, and so the Earth and her colonies had been locked into a perpetual war of attrition.
Joining the military was pretty much the only way that someone of my social class would ever get into space and see the Galaxy, and although adventure had factored into my decision to enlist, seeing the damage done during the battles on the frontier worlds had filled me with resentment. I wanted to get involved, I wanted to help. Most of all, I wanted to kill Bugs. If I succeeded in becoming a Marine, then I might be among those deployed to defend the vulnerable colonies that bordered contested space.
“You will be forming units with trainees from two other species that have been specially selected for this program,” the Staff Sergeant continued. “You must learn to interact with them and to fight alongside them effectively in combat. You will be eating with them, training with them, bunking with them. Anyone who can’t cut it gets sent back to whatever rock they came from, is that clear?”
There was a chorus of affirmations, then we were led out of the hangar bay and into the station proper. There were gasps of awe as we emerged onto the torus, an artificial breeze ruffling my hair and the muddled roar of a thousand conversations rising to my ears. I could have been standing on any city street back on Earth. The torus was massive, the curvature beneath my feet imperceptible, only the way that the walkway curved out of view in the distance giving it away. The ceiling was painted blue, dotted with puffy clouds to create the illusion of a sky, the large lamps that were spaced along it at intervals shining with a light and heat that approximated Sol. Buildings lined the torus to either side of us, seemingly carved out of the white hull material, their facades decorated to resemble terrestrial structures. There were molded bricks and wooden slats, windows and doors, colorful awnings over what might be stores. There were planters along the center of the walkway that housed trees and flowers, along with benches and information kiosks. They had gone all out on selling the illusion that one was standing on a planet rather than on a space station.
My senses were almost completely fooled, and I immediately felt more at ease than I ever had on any of the previous ships and stations that I had visited. I felt more like I was standing in a resort rather than a Naval base, but in the back of my mind, I knew that the feeling would fade once the hard work began.
“Welcome to the torus,” the Staff Sergeant shouted over the din. The walkways were packed with bustling crowds, civilians and military personnel alike. I could even see a few aliens, although they were too far away for me to get a good look at them. “The station is split into four quadrants – military, tourism, residential, and engineering. As trainees, you are to remain in the military quarter. You see those colored lines on the floor? If you get lost, or if you end up somewhere that you’re not supposed to be, follow them to find your way back. Now, keep up, and don’t get separated. The Pinwheel is even larger than it looks.”
I stared with my mouth agape until the impatient trainee that occupied the place in the line behind me gave me a shove, ushering me forward.
The Staff Sergeant gave us a guided tour of the quadrant, and I only became more surprised as we marched on. Not only were there barracks to house the troops, but also gyms and recreation centers, even an Olympic swimming pool. Everything was built from the same white material, but decorated with planters and other aesthetic touches that made me feel like I was back on a college campus.
Sergeant Vasiliev led us to our barracks, a large, squat building that looked as if it would house around a thousand recruits. We marched down a small pathway that was lined with trees and artificial grass, and as we entered through the main door, I saw that the building was far larger than its outward appearance would suggest. As well as the facades that protruded out onto the torus, the interior of the structures here extended deep into the station’s hull. Rather than finding exposed pipes and naked wiring, the buildings were as attractive on the inside as they were on the outside, the white corridors decorated with potted plants and UNN regalia.
The barracks building that we would be calling home for the foreseeable future was split into several different areas. Our quarters were comprised of a small room that housed two trainees at a time, each one furnished with two bunks and two lockers, along with a desk and a few other pieces of necessary furniture. I couldn’t help but notice some irregularities. Some of the beds were conspicuously larger than the others, and in some of the rooms, the second bed was missing altogether. Instead, there was a bowl-shaped recess in the floor that was lined with pillows. What might be sleeping in those? I had to assume that the rooms would house two aliens of a different species, as this exercise was not solely for our benefit.
The less presentable soldiers were given time to change their clothes and to freshen up, and then our tour continued. There was an expansive mess hall, a communal shower and bathroom, and a common room where recruits could spend what free time they would be allotted.
Boot camp had been rough. I had spent almost a year crawling through wet mud and running obstacle courses while Drill Instructors shouted insults at me. We had marched from sunrise to sunset until half of the platoon had passed out. In comparison, this facility was downright luxurious. What must it have cost to put a structure like this together?
The smells of cooking food captured my attention as we neared the mess hall, but I was distracted when I noticed a procession of Krell entering the building. I had never seen one in person before, and I couldn’t help but stare at the aliens.
The Krell were huge, lumbering creatures evolved from amphibious reptiles. They were about eight feet tall despite their hunched posture, and at least fifteen feet from their long snouts to their oar-like tails. They resembled bipedal alligators, with jagged teeth jutting from their jaws, their bodies coated in a protective armor of spinach-green scales and bony scutes that tapered into a lighter beige on their soft underbellies. Their many-toed feet slapped on the deck as they marched toward our group, wide and splayed to prevent them from sinking into the mud of their homeworld, their heavy tails dragging along the floor behind them.
They wore no clothes save for a kind of leather poncho that was draped over their broad shoulders, worn for utility more than to preserve their modesty. It was covered in pockets and pouches where they might store items. That wasn’t to imply that they were nude. If they had genitals, they weren’t visible.
Krell Concept Art
The two groups exchanged suspicious glances, the humans shifting uneasily as the Krell peered back at them with their beady eyes. It was no fault of the aliens, but they were fucking scary. They were golems of teeth and scales, standing a good two feet taller than their human counterparts in spite of their poor posture. It was hard to tell what the Krell were thinking, as their faces weren’t exactly the most expressive.
“Looks like some of our friends have arrived!” Vasiliev chimed, walking over to meet them. I noticed that the aliens were being led around by a human. I had been so engrossed by the sight of the strange creatures that I hadn’t even seen him. It was another Staff Sergeant, judging by his uniform. He must have been giving a similar tour to the aliens. He chatted with Vasiliev for a minute or two, out of earshot of the recruits, who continued to scrutinize their reptilian allies.
“These are the Krell,” Vasiliev announced, turning back toward the trainees and gesturing to the giant aliens. “They’re ugly bastards, but nigh unstoppable on the battlefield once their blood gets flowing. Consider yourselves lucky that they’re far friendlier than they look.” He glanced back over his shoulder, appraising the squad of reptiles. “These guys are a little green,” he added, chuckling at his own joke. “But here’s a tip from me to you. If you have to share a room with one, don’t fight him over the humidifier. You’ll lose.”
The human trainees chuckled nervously, now dreading having to bunk with one of these monsters for the next several months.
“They don’t talk much,” the other Staff Sergeant said, pointing to his throat. “They lack the vocal apparatus to reproduce human speech. That said, they understand English well enough, so you shouldn’t have much trouble communicating.”
The Krell joined our procession, and we toured the remainder of the barracks. Unfortunately, we didn’t stop by the mess hall for more than a minute. It seemed that dinner wasn’t being served just yet. Instead, we headed back outside and moved on to an adjacent building. Could these structures even be called buildings? They were technically integral parts of the station, making them more akin to the cabins on a spaceship, but this place was so huge that it blurred the lines.
The next structure housed an impressive gym. It was a large, open-plan space littered with exercise equipment. This was also where the lauded Olympic-sized swimming pool was situated, the colorful lane dividers floating on the surface of the blue water. As we neared the edge of the pool, I could make out a few humans in swimwear moving up and down the lanes as they swam lengths. There were Kell, too, floating on the surface like crocodiles in a river with only their scaly backs and their snouts visible. Their long, powerful tails waved back and forth lazily, pushing them along. Our Krell entourage seemed pleased by the sight of water. They were amphibious, after all. They must be relieved to see that they would be able to take a dip if they wanted to.
I leaned over the edge, looking into the pool and wondering how deep it was. To my bemusement, I spotted a dark shadow lurking beneath, a solitary air bubble rising up to disturb the calm surface.
Suddenly, a great shape exploded out of the water. Before I could so much as cry out in surprise, a powerful force slammed into my chest to send me skidding backward on my ass, knocking over a fellow trainee like a bowling pin. As we picked ourselves up – the Krell bristling unhappily and snapping their jagged teeth together – an orange mass emerged from the pool. It shook itself like a wet dog, spraying us with water. I nursed a bruised rib, glaring accusingly at the alien.
It was a she, that much was obvious enough, all eight feet of her. She was basically humanoid, with a feminine figure and the impressive musculature of a swimmer or a gymnast visible beneath a tight-fitting, one-piece swimsuit. My eyes were drawn to her impressive bust and the rows of abdominal muscles that rippled beneath the wet fabric, even before I had noticed her more alien features.
She had digitigrade legs like a dog or a cat that was standing on its hindlimbs, ending in paw-like feet that were tipped with black claws, her round thighs dimpled with muscle. Her hair was a shade of ginger that bordered on orange, cropped short in a messy bob. Protruding from it were a pair of small, round ears like those of a lion or a bear, situated high on her skull. They were covered in matching fur, pivoting and swiveling independently of one another as they tracked the sounds in the environment.
Her smooth skin was eerily similar to that of a human, but it ended at her knees and elbows, where it gave way to a coat of orange fur that was patterned with faded tiger stripes. It gave the impression that she was wearing furry gloves and socks. Whether she was furred beneath the swimsuit, I couldn’t speculate, but I didn’t see any protruding tufts. She was resting her four-fingered, fuzzy hands on her wide hips, each one tipped with the same curved claws as her feet. They looked like shiny, black meat hooks to me.
I looked up at her face, finding it somewhat uncanny. She looked human enough, but the brow and the bridge of her nose were flat, ending in a pink nose like that of a cat. Her lips were full and rosy, while her eyes were a mesmerizing shade of amber, the alien peering back at me with her feline pupils.
Raz Concept Art
“You’re dead, tree climber!” she announced as she flicked her long tail back and forth. She spoke English with a thick, rolling accent that reminded me of Russian. Unlike the Krell, her species must have a similar enough vocal apparatus to humans. Behind her, more orange heads emerged ominously from the pool, their reflective eyes peering at us from beneath mops of wet hair.
I prepared a retort but thought better of it, merely rubbing my side as I scowled at her. I had worked too hard to get here, I didn’t want to make a bad impression on my first day and put my position in jeopardy.
“These are the human soldiers that I’ve heard so much about?” the alien continued. “They’re tiny! I thought that they’d at least be larger than the support staff.” She pointed a clawed finger at me, exposing a set of pointed, carnivore teeth in a mocking grin. “This one reacted so slowly that I could have killed him in my sleep!”
Vasiliev stepped forward, his tone stern now.
“Stand down, Raz. May I remind you that you’re here as a guest of the UNN?”
The big, orange alien shrugged her shoulders dismissively, falling backward into the pool with a splash.
“These are the Borealans,” Vasiliev continued, addressing the recruits. “They recently joined the Coalition. They’re not quite as well socialized as some of the other species, so be patient with them. Their planet is right on the frontier, and it’s going to be an invaluable asset. Now, if you’ll follow me this way, we can continue the tour and get everyone fed.”
We continued through the facility, touring the rest of the gym, then we headed outside and into a training building. It looked much like a school, with desks of varying sizes and shapes in order to accommodate the different species, along with wall-mounted monitors that would display lesson information. I wondered what the subjects might be. Advanced tactics and enemy intelligence for sure, perhaps cultural and historical studies of the different races participating in the program.
The Krell seemed interested and attentive. Although initially wary of their fearsome appearance, the humans had begun to warm up to them, and crude communication was being attempted between the two groups to the amusement of all. The Borealans, on the other hand, were nowhere to be seen.
Once the tour was complete, we made our way back toward the barracks and the mess hall. I was glad of it. We had been on our feet all day, and some of the trainees had lost their breakfast in the shuttle. My stomach was growling, and I was more than ready to get some food in me.
The mess hall was large enough to feed a couple of hundred people and aliens at once. To the far wall was a glass counter and stacks of metal trays, and beyond it must be the kitchen. Occupying the rest of the space were tables and benches made from metal, spartan and functional in their design. Much like the bunks and the desks, they came in various sizes in order to accommodate the different species who were participating in the program.
As we made our way toward the counter to pick up our trays, I noticed that the Borealans were already sat at their table. There were half a dozen of them in all, their tight-fitting swimsuits replaced with more standard UNN attire, jumpsuits in the usual Navy blue. I noted that none of them were wearing shoes. They seemed to prefer to go barefoot. They were all females, as far as I could tell.
They were eating what looked like slabs of bloody steak, along with some kind of large fish that I didn’t recognize. The sea creatures were almost intact, their long, muscular bodies sporting more fins than I was comfortable with. The aliens didn’t use cutlery, there wasn’t a knife or a fork in sight. Instead, they dug into their meal with their curved claws, tearing off hunks of flesh and chewing them noisily. Every so often, one of them would bring out a glass vial from one of their pockets, uncorking it and seasoning the food with some unidentifiable sauce.
I was a little annoyed by the bad attitude of the aliens. The humans and the Krell had spent the entire day interacting and bonding, while the Borealans had been nowhere to be seen. They hadn’t mingled with the other species at all, save for the encounter by the swimming pool.
They nudged one another, peering across the room at us as we collected our trays and started to load them up with food. I chanced a look over my shoulder at them, meeting Raz’s gaze, her yellow irises reflecting the glow from the lighting strips in the ceiling like those of a cat. She gave me a sardonic smirk, then went back to her meat, tearing into it with her sharp teeth as red juice dribbled down her chin. She maintained eye contact all the while, trying to intimidate me. What was her problem? I stared right back at her, refusing to let myself be bullied. After a few moments, she broke off and began to chat with a companion to her right.
I felt as if I had achieved some minor victory, turning my attention back to my lunch. I selected a fruit cup and a sandwich wrapped in clingfilm from the counter, watching as the towering Krell beside me picked out his or her own meal. Unlike the Borealans, it was hard to tell if the reptiles were males or females. The Krell were eating what looked like a gelatinous mass of caviar and stringy, dried seaweed. They gestured to one another, grunting happily in low, resonating tones that made my teeth chatter. It seemed as though they were pleased with the catering.
The humans and Krell paired off into several groups, making their way to the various tables, sitting side by side as they ate their meals together in the spirit of the exchange program. Sandwiches were dissected, seaweed was examined, and everyone seemed to be having a good time. Except for the Borealans, of course. The feline aliens watched from a distance, their round ears swiveling as they listened in on our conversations, their furry tails whipping back and forth behind their benches as they muttered to one another in a language that nobody else could speak.
Once everyone had eaten their fill, the Staff Sergeants ordered us to our sleeping quarters. The humans and the Krell were now firm friends, mingling as they made their way down the corridor. The Borealans lagged behind the group unenthusiastically, talking to each other in their yowling, spitting language despite their obvious mastery of English.
As I had surmised, once we reached the dormitories, everyone was paired off and assigned to one of the rooms. The Sergeants read from their tablet computers, directing us to our respective quarters. Krell and humans, humans and Borealans, Borealans and Krell. The mix seemed to be completely random. The humans, who were now more comfortable with their reptilian friends, seemed relieved to be placed with one of the placid amphibians rather than with a Borealan. Those that drew the short straw gave their comrades desperate, fearful looks as they followed the surly felines to their assigned rooms.
The Krell seemed perfectly happy wherever they were placed, not uttering so much as a word of complaint as they chose a locker and unpacked their gear obediently. Unlike the humans, they hadn’t brought rucksacks with them. All of their belongings seemed to be housed within the pockets of their leather ponchos. The mystery of the strange bowls in the floor was solved as I watched one of the Krell sink down into the padded recess, curling up like a giant dog.
The Borealans, on the other hand, hissed and protested. One of them argued fervently with Vasiliev, who appeared to speak their language. She spat and growled, gesturing with her furry hands, leaving the rest of us confused as to whether those odd vocalizations were a component of their speech or not. The Staff Sergeant quickly grew frustrated with her, ending the argument with a reprimand and the order to “speak some damned English.” The pleading look on the face of her roommate told the whole story.
I was assigned to room number forty-seven, and I waited patiently by the door, hoping that a Krell would separate from the crowd and walk in my direction. To my horror, it was Raz who swaggered over to me, her face split into a cruel grin. No, this was impossible, there must be some mistake. What were the odds?
“Are you in forty-seven?” she asked, looming over me and enjoying my pained expression.
“I...suppose so,” I replied, dumbfounded by my bad luck.
“Looks like we get to be roomies, tree climber.”
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2022.01.26 08:58 eusuntjur Why does she want to go on a trip with me?
Hi everyone, i'm pretty clueless about relationships so here i go: -I talk to this girl from my uni -We went on a date once, nothing spectacular happened, we both kinda stopped talking (work, college projects, not a lot of time) -We kinda started talking again -She askes me if i want to go on a trip with her alone for 2 days.
My question is: from all my points, do you think she's interested in me or she just wants a traveling partener (even though we don't really know each other that well)? Sometimes i feel she's kinda into me from the messages she sends, but i'm afraid i might take it too far and this girl just needs a friend to travel for a few days. What do you think?
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2022.01.26 08:58 Pomie99 Hang on folks, Doge Coin is about to have its highest gains... imo
2022.01.26 08:58 HanyouInuYasha Yashahime Episode 41 Preview Images
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2022.01.26 08:58 Dreadfulbandit Will there be a rollback for the people who don't have their accounts back yet?
The in-game support said it would be 2-3 business days for a reply. Also what will happen with collecting rings, I assume people will be behind with them when they get back online?
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2022.01.26 08:58 johntwit Journalists Used to Correct Their Mistakes | Two recent incidents illustrate the shamelessness of contemporary reporters. Anything goes when you’re in an imaginary fight to save democracy
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2022.01.26 08:58 HrustKosti Quick questions! 1) Should BBIG make PR about filing, or now all communication connected to TYDE will not happen, because it is like "separate entity"? 2) We see all meme stocks right now green!Is the growth we experience is connected to filing OR overall shorting/FTD's and we will get meme rally?
2022.01.26 08:58 Interesting-Ad3379 Phonebooth in space, i hope you will like it
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2022.01.26 08:58 AutoNewspaperAdmin [World] - Viral videos, stoicism and stockpiling on Ukraine’s uneasy borders | BBC
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2022.01.26 08:58 tropicaldesert89 How good is the tremolo on the Ibanez essentials series?
I'm looking to do some dive bombs, nothing too crazy, like 2 whole steps at most, and just dive down and not up.
how good is the T106 Ibanez trem/bridge? Is it better than a standard fender trem?
Are there direct replacement trems for the Essential guitars that are better, like a Gotoh or wilkinson?
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2022.01.26 08:58 starwarsgeek644 [US][Selling] Japanese and English Manga
Hanoko Japanese language 1-13 90 shipped
NOT IN ENGLISH.
All of the books shown are practically new, I had bought them a year ago and never got around to reading anything beyond the first volume so I thought it was time to let them go. All the volumes except for the first one still have the obi and probably have never been read before. I had bought them from someone who thought they had gotten the English copy
Jojo part 1-7 box set 600 shipped Part 1/2, and 7 are missing the box but 3,4,5,6 are complete
My hero volume 1, 6 shipped
Erased volume 9, 5 shipped
Inuyashiki 1-4. 20 shipped
Vagabond viz bigs 1-7 250 shipped
Saint young men 15 shipped
My hero 1-2 14-28, 150 shipped
Zelda Majora’s mask + twilight princess volume 1, 15
Toilet bound 3/4, 20 shipped
Misc manga 15 shipped
Initial d 5-7, 60 shipped
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2022.01.26 08:58 sujai1234 Chicken Drumstick Recipe | Home-made Chicken Recipe | Easy And Tasty Drumstick Recipe
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2022.01.26 08:57 AutoNewspaperAdmin [Arts] - China changes Fight Club film ending so the authorities win | BBC
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2022.01.26 08:57 raaner12 Belarus to Remain Crypto-Friendly as Ally Russia Mulls Blanket Ban
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2022.01.26 08:57 Excellent-Ad28 Tik Tok Songs
2022.01.26 08:57 JWebsterr He wasn’t wrong…
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