Author Topic: Taste Test (G) - 2nd Starburst Challenge  (Read 494 times)

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Offline KernilCrash

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Taste Test (G) - 2nd Starburst Challenge
« on: June 10, 2016, 10:39:13 AM »
Good evening all you wonderful Scapers,

Allow me to start by saying that the 'SC2' in the thread title isn't a mistake.  This is, in fact, a response to Starburst Challenge 2.  (Jeeeeeeezum crowbars!  I'm only a flippin' YEAR late!  What's the problem?  :laugh: )  After a very long dry spell, I'm finally finding some time to write, and one of my goals this year is to finish off the ten or so stories that I dreamed up -- but never managed to get written down -- for the Starburst Challenges. 

At long last, hauled out from beneath a very large heap of moldering fics and dusted off, here is 'Taste Test'.  Thank you VTNJScaper for coming up with the challenge.




Taste Test

* * * * *

Starburst Challenge 2 (hosted by VTNJScaper):  Write a fic that takes place during the childhood of any of the recurring characters, and include just a bit of foreshadowing into the character’s Farscape future (the foreshadowing does not need to drive the story; it can just be a tiny blip in the background).

Rating:  G.
Disclaimer:  The characters and universe of Farscape are the property of the Henson Co.  I have not made any profit off this tale, and I’ll do my best to give the characters back the way I found them.     
Time Frame:  Approximately 25-30 cycles prior to Crichton’s arrival in the Uncharted Territories.
Test Driver:  As always … PKLibrarian.  One of these days, she really ought to consider installing airbags in that test vehicle of hers.  The ride this time was a little bumpier than usual.  ;D

Note to the reader:  When the Youses Muses Gang got a glimpse of this challenge, they went charging right off into the Land of Obscurity … in other words this story involves two relatively minor characters.  None of our favorite recurring characters make an appearance.  Since I managed to send my poor test driver, PKLibrarian, hurtling into a bottomless gulch when she read this, I will give away that one of my characters is from Losing Time. 

If I baffle you completely, or you want to be spoiled, the other character is …
(click to show/hide)


Hope you enjoy it.

Crash

* * * * *

He hadn’t intended to hurt anyone. 

He only wanted to play. 

No, Tallip, one of the elders admonished him.  You must not touch them in that manner.  Never, never do that.  They are fragile.  She surrounded him with her energy, pulled him free of his residence inside with the small sentient creature. 

But --  He let the thought drift away unfinished.  Arguing never accomplished anything.  The elders seldom admitted they were anything but right. 

But what? the elder asked. 

Tallip did his best to show her.  He tried to explain why he had chosen this specific alien creature -- one made up of uninteresting matter rather than energy -- to be his new friend.  It had been the gaily spiking mental energy flowing from the being that had beckoned to him; it had been the celebration of life that gushed forth, the orderly but constantly bounding imagination, the brightness that had reached out to Tallip like a beacon.  He had known from the first moment he sensed its life signs that this individual was an immature form of the species.  That had only served to increase his curiosity and his desire to learn more about it. 

He had wanted to share his knowledge of the universe with the first youngster he had ever encountered that he thought might be able to understand.  Tallip and his kind sailed through the ether, surrounded by the ever-shifting beauty of ion storms, of interstellar plasma, and the achingly beautiful glow of charged particles swept into ethereal patterns by the last breathless gusts of far-reaching solar winds.  No one else could splash so messily through a nebula; ricochet off the condensing gravity of a slowly compacting cloud of matter that would some day become a star; or swoop in lazy patterns through a hazy cloud of atoms until their outer shells ran layers thick with amorphous matter, and then streak away in a graceful arc, trailing a beacon of glowing matter. 

Most importantly, few other species knew how to play.  Tallip wanted someone to play with him.  All the other energy riders in his clan were too old to indulge in frivolous games.  The little one he had touched liked to play.  Tallip was certain of that.  He had felt it from half a solar system away.   

No more tasting, the elder chastised him gently.  Not even if it is only to play.  They are too easily damaged.  See what you have done.  The little one’s patterns have been permanently altered.   

Tallip learned a new emotion in that instant:  Guilt.  The elder was right.  He had damaged the being that he had hoped would be his friend.  The gay colors were gone, as were the ricocheting, soaring harmonies that had been flooding from its brain in complex auras.  The tones had soured; the threads of thought were snarled into distasteful tangles, turning back in on themselves, sucking the light and bright colors out of the creature’s existence. 

I’m sorry, Tallip cried, discovering psychic agony both within and without.  Can’t someone fix it?

No.  Once damaged, they can never be restored.  The elder caressed him for a moment, wrapping a wing of sympathetic energy around him.  You did not mean to hurt it.  There will be no punishment.  But it must never happen again.  Do you understand?

Yes, Tallip moaned on a dissonant frequency.  I promise.

The elder coasted away, leaving Tallip to reflect on his crime and the fact that it had gone unpunished.  He made a silent vow, one that none of the others could detect.  He would take the elder’s admonishment to heart; he would make sure it never happened again.  From this moment forward, he would dedicate his existence to making sure that no energy rider ever damaged a member of a weak, defenseless species again. 

Come, the combined intellects of the entire clan sang to him.  It is time to go … time to move on.

He ignored the summons, lingering, searching, seeking some sign that what he had done was not as catastrophic as the elder had pronounced.  Instead, the devastation had continued.  The bright spark was gone, replaced by a malevolent mentality.  It was every bit as brilliant as it had been since the day it was born, just as exceptionally intelligent as before, but dark with twisted intent. 

This is my fault, Tallip called to the damaged being, knowing as he did that his message could not be heard.  It was something he needed to say anyway.  I’m sorry I damaged you, Kaarvok.  Forgive me.

* * * * *

Happiness is not a destination.  It is a method of life. -- Burton Hills
Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass.  It's about learning to dance in the rain. -- Vivian Greene