Alien Circus Freak
The next morning the ship docked on a planet with reddish orange soil. There was a light breeze that made the air thick with dust. They entered a large building made of metal that seemed to have been thrown together to make on odd circular shape with a roof.
Inside, the air was filled with the sounds of animals banging against their pens and cages. Kithe looked around. Aliens of all different forms wandered around, seemingly aimlessly, crowding around cages or the larger arena.
“Um, when I think of a rodeo, I think of earth’s traditional ‘cowboy’ hats and boots,” Mario said. “Not aliens with Mohawks and piercings.”
“Welcome to my kind of crowd,” Sither said. “This is the intergalactic rodeo, a bunch of punk rock junkies with no life. Actually, most of them are outcasts or on the run from the law. That’s why I felt bringing Kithe in. Let her pick out her own ride.”
“I always thought you got your eyes tattooed after you left the rodeo,” Mario said. “Now, I can see how it’d be acceptable in this kind of environment.”
Sither glared at Mario for a second. Kithe felt a slight tension in the air and looked for a way to change the subject.
“So what, are we going to hijack some animal from here like me from the circus?” Kithe asked.
“No,” Sither answered. “I know the guy that owns this place. He owes me a favor.”
They walked through a line of people and came to a fenced in arena. A bull like creature with an alligator like head and four horns lining it’s long face slammed against the fence in an effort to throw its tentacle faced rider off.
“And that would be him,” Sither said in a surprised tone.
“Please tell me you’re talking about the rider and not the animal,” Kithe said. She jumped as the beast slammed against the fence again.
“Whatever evil genetic scientist created that poor beast needs to be shot,” Mario said.
“That is a Venus weevil,” Sither said. “We’re not getting one.”
“Thank you,” Kithe said.
A bell sounded and the rider slid off and scurried over the fence to get away from the sharp teeth of the weevil. He exchanged high five’s with a few aliens and accepted money from some others before turning to Sither.
“I can’t believe you started riding again,” Sither said.
“Well, my star attraction left, I had to do something,” the alien said.
“Guys, this is Antonio,” Sither said. “He owns this place. I used to ride for him.”
“So, what can I do for you?” Antonio asked.
“It seems we’re going into a new area where ships tend to break down and we need a livelier transportation,” Sither said.
“I have something that you’ll just love,” Antonio said. He started towards some pens on the other side of the building. “We got them from that planet you helped find three months ago. They look kind of like earths horses, but Hell gave these creatures wings and a new name.”
Kithe and Mario exchanged glances. They came to a pen where a very strange creature looked at them. It had the figure of a horse, but its front feet were massive clawed paws and its skin was that of a common bats. Two bat-like wings sprouted from its back. It had two horns, one on it’s for head and another on the tip of it’s nose.
“They’re amazing,” Kithe said, reaching out to stroke the creatures neck.
“No kidding, get a load of the white one,” Antonio said.
Kithe looked past the black ‘horse’ to see that there were at least ten more with an array of colors. A pearly white stood out most in the heard of black and browns.
“The only name we’ve found for them is Pegasus,” Antonio said.
“We’ll take five,” Sither said.
“There are only three of us,” Mario said.
“I know, but we have a new agent coming and we’ll need one to haul the extra stuff,” Sither said.
“You can have five if you ride for me on last time,” Antonio said.
“I told you when I left, I’m never riding again,” Sither said.
“Then you can only have three,” Antonio said.
“I’ll ride,” Kith volunteered.
Antonio and Sither looked at her.
“You’re kidding, right?” Antonio said. “One of those things would crush a little human girl like you.”
“Excuse me!” Kithe snapped. “I. . .”
“Listen, Antonio,” Sither cut her off. “Kith’s not exactly human. She could probably slaughter two weevils and not even break a sweat.”
“Show me she’s not human,” Antonio said.
Kithe held her hand up and allowed her claws to grow.
Antonio looked at her for a second. “Fine, you win.”
I figured as much,” Kithe said. “Where do I get on? How long do I stay on?”
“You’ve got to stay on that creature for a total of ten,” Sither said.
“Minutes?” Kithe asked.
“Seconds,” Antonio said. “Come on.”
They went over to the boarding area. Antonio spoke to some men then beckoned to her. She approached and looked at the weevil in the small containment by her.
“Listen,” Antonio said. “Hold onto the rope with one hand. Keep the other hand in the air. When the bell rings, bail. Get out of the way and over the fence.”
“One hand, ten seconds,” Kithe repeated. “Got it.”
“You honestly think you can ride that thing?” an alien with all three tongues pierced taunted her from the fence. “You’re going to get crushed.”
“I could kill that thing with my bare hands,” Kithe said. “Riding it shouldn’t be much of a challenge.”
“She’s cocky,” one of the aliens said.
“She has a right to be,” Sither said.
Kithe situated herself on the weevil and grabbed the rope that was wrapped around it’s chest. The bell rang and the monster tore out of the gate bucking and kicking. Kithe held on and shifted her wait according to the weevil’s movements. She pulled her leg up as the weevil slammed against the fence. The bell sounded for her to dismount. She gathered her feet and flipped on the weevil’s back. She scrambled over the fence to meat Sither staring at her blankly.
“What?” she asked.
“You beat any alien that ever tried to ride,” Antonio said. “Most can’t stay on the whole time, much less do a flip off a weevil.”
Kithe shrugged, “I’m not like most aliens. So, do we get the Pegasus?”
“Well, yea,” Antonio said. “If I had known that you would be that good, I’d agree to as many as you want.”
“Kithe turned back to Sither who still looked dumb founded.
“What’s wrong with you?” she asked.
“That was the craziest thing I’ve ever seen,” Sither said. “You are nuts, girl.”
“Don’t forget, it’s harder to kill her than other aliens,” Mario said. “I distinctly remember a miraculous escape from the circus.”
Sither shrugged. In less than an hour, the horse like creatures were loaded onto the ship and put in a special cargo hold. Mario complained lightly about the beasts being aboard his ship. They boarded the ship and took off.
“Next stop, Earth,” Mario said. ETA, twenty-five hours.”
“I’m going to bed then,” Sither said.
Kithe watched him leave then sat in the passenger seat by Mario. He glanced at her.
“Can I help you?” he asked.
“I’m just watching,” Kithe said.
Mario nodded and maneuvered the craft off the ground. They rode in silence for a while. A smile crept onto Mario’s face
“You sure had Sither floored,” he said. “He was once a really good rider. Rode all kinds of weird things in his life I guess.”
“Why doesn’t he ride any more?” Kithe asked.
“Mario shook his snake-like head. “I don’t really know. For some reason or another, he just stopped.
“So tell me about earth,” Kithe said.
“Earth,” Mario said. “It’s a really weird planet. You travel over it, one minute you see desert, the next grasslands and then you see forest and after a while you’ll run into ocean. Then you’ll come to big cities. It also has icy continents on its top and bottom. You’ve never seen any thing like it.”
“What about the humans?” Kithe asked.
“They’re OK,” Mario said. “They’re just like any other alien you meet. It’s their planet that every one’s attracted to. How New York became abandoned is really a mystery. Some one said that the air became toxic because of some underground natural gas spring. I doubt it.”
“What are the chances that the creatures that live there now chased every one out?” Kithe asked.
“Slim,” Mario said. “Humans have this uncanny attachment to their land. They’d have fought for it.”
“Does any one know where the creatures came from?” Kithe asked.
“The humans had a mythical creature called a vampire that resembled these things,” Mario said. “My personal opinion is, some one wanted to create something like that and their experiments went wrong.”
“Genetic testing?” Kithe guess.
“It seems the most likely,” Mario said. “Some freak with a petri dish and a chemical set. I think the universe is full of idiots and when they learn the right stuff, they make big mistakes.”“
Kithe nodded then yawned. “I think I’m going to go to bed.” She stood up and made her way back to her room.
She sat on her bed and thought about what Mario had said.
“Am I the result of some guy with a bunch of chemicals?” she thought. She fell back on her pillow and fell asleep.