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Rosemary A. Wolf

"I am just having a little bit of fun."

0 · 342 views · located in The Galaxy

a character in “The Last Humans”, as played by thenotsoinnocent

Description





Rosemary August Wolf

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H E X: #00BFBF


A G E: Twenty-three


E Y E S: Hazel


H A I R: Dark Brown


A L I A S: Wolf


H E I G H T: 5'10.5"


S P E C I E S: Human


N I C K N A M E S: T.B.D.


F A C E C L A I M: Rae Rodriguez






ImageP E R S O N A L I T Y
Wolf is resilient, confident, reliable, and intelligent. The four qualities may be the only good ones the crew sees regularly. Wolf can be difficult to put things simply. If she ever has plans of revenge, it is best to leave her to it. She can be very stern and patient when it comes to getting revenge. Though, she only gets revenge when someone messes with her or the crew. She’ll do her best to make the culprit’s life a living hell. She has a great imagination and is never short on ideas.

Another thing about Wolf is that she is rather pessimistic. She is normally the one to bring up the worst-case scenario. Her pessimistic side likes to come out when they are planning and or about to take on a job. When they aren’t working on a plan, Wolf is usually off somewhere causing mischief. Wolf has a fondness for causing trouble. She loves to mess with others. Her favorite thing is to push someone’s buttons. Wolf enjoys the reactions she gets out of others the most. She has a habit of saying things to make someone feel uncomfortable, embarrassed, etc. for the hell of it.

Friendliness isn’t an uncommon concept to Wolf. Though, since Earth blew up, she only shows it when dealing with clients and even certain strangers. Wolf is even friendly with the crew for the most part. She tries not to start too many fights or arguments with them. She even tries not to lie to them. They are the only ones she can count on. Unless someone pisses her off, which isn’t hard, Wolf isn’t aggressive at all with the crew. She saves her aggression up for strangers she doesn’t have to be nice to.

These strangers usually are the ones who want to insult or threaten the crew. Wolf wouldn’t think twice about attacking someone who tried to harm the crew. Wolf’s fury is never a good thing. When fury hits her, she feels emotional and sensitive as well. The combination of the three usually causes shit to hit the fan. Wolf is one of those people who cries when angry. The tears are likely what stops her from killing someone. It even sometimes stops her from saying merciless things.

Surprisingly, Wolf still has a sweet and squishy center. If one of the crew is hurt or ill, she pretty much doesn’t leave their side. Wolf will be gentle and do her best to help them reach a speedy recovery. Wolf will be kind, easy-going, and maybe even show happiness. Wolf does care for the crew and doesn’t wish any of them harm. For the most part, this soft and warm side stays trapped behind walls. The only other circumstance that may bring it out is bullying. She’ll be all sweet to the victim and make sure they end up feeling and or are okay. Though, this is only after she deals with the bully. Wolf isn’t okay with the strong messing with the weak.






ImageH I S T O R Y
Rosemary was primarily raised by her strict and religious grandmother. Both of her parents continued to live in college dorms after she was born. Her mother was forced to and her father had no choice since he was from Germany. Although, her parents visited her when they could throughout the school year. Her father visited a little less because he made a bad impression with her grandmother.

Her mother, father, and grandmother “agreed” to name her Rosemary Carmen Wolf-Rivera. Her father decided against it. He filled out the birth certificate Rosemary August Wolf. August was the name of his dearest uncle who asked him to name his first child after him. He could do this as her mother was drugged up, and her grandmother wasn’t at the hospital. When they found out, they were livid.

Living with her grandmother gave Rosemary a colorless life. If they weren’t at church, they would be at home. As Rosemary grew older, her father put color into her life. Rosemary spent every summer with him in Germany. When she returned home, she kept to herself about what they did. If she told her grandmother the truth, she’d throw a fit. She didn’t tell her mother as they weren’t close.

If her mother wasn’t working, she was studying or in class. They never had a proper relationship. They were strangers more than anything else. She was closer to her grandmother, and they were acquaintances at most. Rosemary’s father was the only one she was close to. He filled her life with color. He showed and helped her experience emotions she normally didn’t.

If it concerned her grandmother or if it was in her best interest, Rosemary would lie and pretend. She found it fun to do as she succeeded at tricking someone. Rosemary could have had a career as an actress. In school, she was friendly, but kept to herself. Rosemary was mainly known for putting bullies into their place without getting into trouble.

When Earth blew up, some emotions were lost. She built stronger walls to protect herself. Rosemary even left the group as soon as they landed on Glaxon. She ended up being trapped by an alien who tried to make her its slave. Rosemary escaped about a week later thanks to brains and luck. Although Rosemary didn’t return to the group, Wolf did.






I M P L A N T S

Omnilingualism: When on Earth, Wolf knew Spanish, German, and English. Now Wolf knows all languages, human or not. Wolf’s implant makes her mind the ultimate translator, well, almost. She can understand, speak, and utilize communication without any prior knowledge of the language. Though, issues have occurred. Sometimes a word is missed when she translates. Also, some words have multiple meanings, and she could end up translating incorrectly. These issues can cause the meaning of a sentence to change completely. At times, Wolf can sound an idiot. Sometimes others sound like an idiot to her.

Lastly, some words don’t translate very well or at all. There are times she needs to find a different word to use or ask them to reword their sentence. If she can’t think of a similar word, she needs make a new sentence. In turn, this can cause her or their sentence to mean something else. Isn’t it fun when you insult someone or imply something inappropriate by mistake? Or is it more fun to hear the wrong thing and smack someone for being rude? Apologizes are often used to amend things and or to simply not make things worse. Though, sometimes it is too late to apologize, so you better run.


X-Ray Vision: Wolf has seen the other humans naked at least once or more thanks to this implant. The implant isn’t prefect and at times it glitches. The glitch can last from a few seconds to a few hours. When it glitches, her vision can penetrate too much or too little. When her implant works, she can see through solid objects or see within objects. Though, Wolf can see much more than that. Wolf can see through organic matter, which allows her to see if someone is injured/sick. She can even trace bodily function activities. All of this comes in handy if she needs to find a physical weakness to take someone out, find out what is wrong with someone physically, and or to see if they have any weapons.

Supernatural Reflexes: Wolf could flow from clique to clique in high school, but she always got along with the athletes best. She always enjoyed and excelled in gym class. Before she got this implant, she already had good reflexes. Some would say she reacts with lighting speed now. She reacts faster than humans and even some aliens. Wolf is great at dodging. She finds it easy to predict what happens next or what someone may do next. Though, this ability works best when she is alert. If she isn’t paying attention, don’t expect her to dodge an attack. If you warn her about the attack and she has enough time, she’d likely be able to avoid it. This all depends on how quickly her brain processes what is happening. The implant isn’t prefect and sometimes decides not to kick in right away.




R E L A T I O N S

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Wolf adores Grace, so she is rather friendly with her. The problem is that it brings her great joy to embarrass the shy girl. Her favorite way of bothering Grace is by putting her in the spotlight. Her favorite thing about Grace is that she does dangerous and or reckless stuff with her. Though, Wolf happily knows she annoys the girl. They are like oil and water with their pessimistic and optimistic natures. Let's not forget, Wolf knows Grace doesn’t like it when she tries to make her loosen her grip on her morals.



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Wolf doesn’t bother Isaac’s on a regular basis. She leaves him alone for the most part. Isaac has pushed and still pushes one button of hers. He insists on calling her Rosemary. In protest, no matter the situation, she has mastered ignoring whatever he said or plans on saying when he uses that name. This is if she doesn't get pissed off. She’ll even avoid him for a while after he has said Rosemary. Isaac calling her Rosemary doesn’t save him from her completely. Wolf does love to play pranks and push buttons. She usually starts trouble after he has used her old name. Also, she can’t help the itch she still gets to bother Isaac.

Since she bothers him less, the pranks and or words may be a bit more extreme than her normal ones. Despite this, Wolf tries to be friendly towards him. She’ll attempt to have conversations if her old name isn’t used. Usually she is aggressive with the annoyance she has for him. They had been acquaintances in high school though. They floated around the same social circles at times. Wolf knows he isn’t that bad. She sees how he is protective. Wolf even finds Isaac amusing when he treats her like a child or is disappointed in her.



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Wolf finds Summer to be fun. Summer likes to try to get her to stop bothering the others. She even tries to ignore her when Wolf is teasing. For the most part, she bothers Summer just before she pushes the wrong button. Of course, Wolf does hit the wrong button at times. This is when Wolf sees another side to Summer. Wolf likes to see this other side. It is nice to know that Summer can feel other things besides happiness. The girl’s constant state of happiness makes Wolf feel like something is off about her. Wolf is friendly with Summer regularly though. Summer is someone she goes on adventures with. Sometimes they even get into trouble on these adventures, which adds to the fun in Wolf’s opinion. If Wolf hasn’t seen Summer in a while or feels like she has been “neglecting” her, she goes to find her. Wolf can’t have Summer thinking that she forgot about her now.



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Wolf finds Jax to be a challenge. He is the one person on the ship who’s buttons push. Wolf can’t even find them. It seems as nothing will ever bother Jax. Wolf knows words have a low chance of working, so she sticks to actions. Wolf’s attempt at bothering Jax is to interrupt his naps and to try to get him into trouble. He seems to ignore her when she does any of these things. Although, Wolf swears she sees a tiny smile or reaction at each attempt. It keeps the ever so tiny flame of hope alive inside of her. Even if the hope died, she would still bother Jax. It may seem silly, but she believes something is wrong with Jax. He is always napping, and it worries her. She even asked him once if he was dying. If Wolf isn’t trying to bother Jax, she makes sure he eats all his food and takes care of himself. Jax’s nonreaction honestly pushes one of her buttons. At each push, her mind works harder to think of more extreme ways of push his buttons.



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Buck and Wolf are like fire and gasoline. Wolf loves to push Buck's buttons because it is so easy to do. He gives her the best reactions. Surprisingly, Wolf is fond of Buck because of this. Although, she would never admit this. If they are near each other for too long, they usually end up in a big fight. The fights are usually because Wolf did something dangerous, like doing something that could get her hurt or in trouble. Wolf does try to end the fights before she gets too angry. She will usually try to say something inappropriate to leave Buck speechless. The fights stop if she gets upset enough to cry. She is useless at fighting once the tears come. When Buck is being too overbearing, she tends to avoid him. She makes sure it is hard for him to keep tabs on her. Despite all of this, Wolf makes sure to be friendly with Buck. She does like to drive him crazy, but doesn't want him to go crazy.






So begins...

Rosemary A. Wolf's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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ImageJax sighed and stretched out in the booth. He dropped his boots on the table and rolled his head back to stare at the ceiling wondering how long his team was going to be celebrating for. Celebrating five more years of living, mourning five years since their home world was destroyed, celebrating another few dollars in their pocket after today’s job. It was all the same to Jax.

The bar the group was occupying, Lealt’s, was not a high class establishment, but when you lived in the wrong half of the galaxy like they did, it was the local. Technically classified as a ship, the bar floated mid-space a fifteen minute flight from Glaxon. They’d been here plenty of times, always coming back when they’d forgotten about the previous trouble they’d gotten into.

The bar had three levels, and enough variety to satisfy most desires.

Lealt’s, despite its unsavoury glamour, was always packed. It seemed the galaxy lacked an understanding of ‘week nights’. The bar’s main appeal was Jixeon, a liquid that glowed blue and felt like swallowing static electricity, banned from any regulated establishment because its affects tended to be on the unpredictable side. Of course, that hadn’t stopped Jax and the group doing a few rounds of Jixeon earlier before they had all disappeared and left Jax to man the booth.

The room spun a little for Jax, but the Jixeon mostly just made him extra sleepy.

“You.” A beefy hand started banging on the table, and as Jax blinked slowly a few times he realised the Jixeon might have been affecting him more than he thought at the entire bar seemed to shake.

Jax dropped his feet to the ground to keep his balance and looked up at the trio of aliens in the front of him. The main one had purple bumpy skin and every time he breathed out a puff of yellow steam enveloped his head. Jax supposed he might have looked familiar but they’d been so many aliens over the years. “Where girl?”

Wolf had been teaching them all Standard Galactic, the most commonly used language in the galaxy, and Jax had been a reluctant learner, but even he was better than this beefy alien in front of him. So he figured this guy was looking for Wolf to interact with, or for Grace, aliens always seemed to ask for Grace.

So Jax shrugged with a sigh. He didn’t know where either of them were, they might have said something but he hadn’t heard, or if he had heard, he hadn’t remembered.

“Where girl now!” The alien repeated with a raised voice and more insistent drumming on the table.

Jax rolled his eyes, “I don’t know, somewhere in here I guess.”


The alien roared in his own language that sounded something like how Jax imagined sea lions to communicate, hit the table one last time for good measure, then stormed off into the crowded bar. Presumably to find ‘girl’.

Jax sighed and settled back into a comfy position in the booth, dreading the thought that anything annoying was going to come from this. He could really use a peaceful nap for once.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Nothing was that easy.

There was a crashing noise, the shatter of glass, and a familiar snorting-grumble. All piggish, nasal. Familiar. Across the way stood a tall, gangly human male. Heels dug in. Mouth set into a hard line, an eyebrow flagged up in annoyance. He stood directly in front of the purple-skinned alien, its ugly head craned in his direction, lips pulled into the closest reminiscence of a scowl. A puff of yellow smoke billowed from the corner of its mouth. The other two flanked his sides and seemed to look to their leader for guidance, fingers twitching.

“Where girl, huh?” Buck’s voice echoed sourly as he drew up a finger and prodded the alien hard in the chest. The way his shoulders were set, it was clear that he’d been listening in on the conversation. Glowing blue liquid pooled at their feet and slid down the alien’s knobbed toes. Fuck off, understand that?” As knowledgeable as Wolf was about the alien language—about any language, for that matter, Buck had never been that interested in learning any of it. He believed some things were just universal.

A middle finger flagged in the air? How could anyone not know that?

Sometimes, he paid enough attention to Wolf’s lessons to pick up a couple new words. He understood some of the more guttural languages, but only enough to get by so he could make transactions, ask where the bathroom was, or shake someone down. The aliens he bumped elbows with were mostly this type: big, dumb, stupid. He couldn’t carry a conversation. Mostly because he didn’t want to. Not with flea-bags like this one, booming out their chests, looking for trouble where they shouldn’t. Where girl.

It made his skin crawl. Made him want to punch the thing in the face for even insinuating what it wanted to do. He wasn’t sure where Isaac was, or the girls, for that matter. Either way… Buck squared his shoulders, and remained anchored in place when the alien took one of its meaty hands and gripped at him, digging sharp, mishappen nails into his collarbone, pricking through his shirt. Hard to tell if the thing was smiling but it definitely looked like it. A chattering noise sounded and the other two joined it. Laughter? Who fucking knew.

“Where girl?” the alien repeated.

There was a twitch along his jawline, only splitting a fraction next to his ear. A sliver. The vague, white line puckered where pink peeped through. Barely discernible, unless you knew where to look. A strange scar, on a strange human. His eyebrows drew together as Buck leaned closer to the alien, eyes feverishly bright. He’d been drinking like the rest of ‘em. Maybe, a little too much. His hand was lowering to his waist, slightly behind his back. They were all armed. Couldn't afford not to be.

“Didn’t you hear me the first time?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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The night started out just fine. Summer and her crew had celebrated their '5 year anniversary' of being together. At the same time, Summer didn't want to remember that humans were an endangered species. It was pretty ironic, going from being the most power species on Earth to realizing you were just a drop of water compared to the numerous lifeforms in the whole universe. Summer personally hated this 'anniversary' because it was another painful reminder of what she lost. She tried pushing her increasing depressing thoughts and feelings by laughing and smiling with those she now saw as her 'new family'. It wasn't long before drinks were ordered. In the past Summer flat out refused to drink anything alcoholic. When she got her smelling implant, she was able to pick out anything that was distilled or alcoholic. While this wasn't the main reason why she got that implant, it was a definite perk, especially with Wolf around. Earth might be destroyed and the USA nothing more then a memory, but she still obeyed the "No drinking under 21" law that the US had. Plus she was scared of what it could do to her. While her original family was never religious, the times they did go to church, she never drank the wine there.

Recently Summer did turn 21, but was still reluctant to try the blue liquid. However with the combination of her curious nature and Wolf's persuasion of, "Just take a sip. It's not going to kill you", Summer finally gave into temptation and took a sip, which ended up as a gulp. It was all over from there. She felt great and went off with Grace somewhere with her drink. She was already plastered halfway drinking the stuff and somehow got separated from Grace. Seeing she was done, she recalled where their booth were. Even when drunk, it seemed Summer still had a good memory. She showed up just as the aliens Jax and Buck interacted with left.

"Hi boys! This has been the best evening of my life! Who just left? Bucky, have you been a good boy?" Summer asked with a lopsided grin.

It would have been obvious she was a goner, plus she never addressed Buck that way too. She also kept hiccuping and giggling.

"Hmmm, I could use another drink, but I think I'll rest a bit."

However, before she could do anything else, she tripped and ended up falling directly on top of Jax.

"Ooops! I fell! Hehehe sorry Jaxy. Mmmm you feel sooooo goooood. I think I'll just stay here," giggled Summer before snuggling against Jax and passing out.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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xxxxGrace Cooper

With a few quick strides, Grace exited the gambling area, moving quickly down the flight of stairs disappearing into the shadows of the bar below. It wouldn't take long for the Paloovians upstairs to realize they'd been duped. You see, Grace overhead them when she was sneaking around the floor. They spoke of a trick they planned to play on a group of aliens playing an alienized version of poker, similar to Texas Hold'em. Grace had planning on joining the game anyway, hoping to earn some spare money for her crew. It'd keep the thoughts of rations off their minds for a day or two. Before she was planning a fair game, but if she was going to cheat, might as well cheat the right people. It didn't take long to take their money. They may not be the same species, but pride was present in everyone. They were quick to bet all of their money, not wanting to show weakness around the young, human girl. They simply played right into her hand. The game finished as soon as it began with Grace collecting her winnings quickly.

It didn't take long for them to come after her. Grace stayed in the shadows, blending in despite her human nature and fiery red locks. She watched as they approach Jax first, whom appear apathetic to the whole situation as he did with most things. It worked out in handy when creatures left him. Unfortunately for the creatures, they ran into Buck next and that will lead to a disaster for Grace when he realized she was causing trouble again. It was her fault, but she was helping the group and it felt good. Call it an adrenaline rush or a foolish lack of self preservation, but it made her feel whole for a moment.

The group's celebration of their five years together was bittersweet for everyone. Some remembered the people they lost and others just felt sadness for being the last remaining humans. Grace was both yet neither. She left behind two people on Earth whom she knew she would lose at some point. She was mentally prepared for it, but not in a ball of fire. The lost affected her too, but not in an obvious way like some of the others. The growing recklessness of one of her teammates wasn't unnoticed by her and the growing guilt in another. The team has been going five years strong, hopefully they can last another.

Grace moved closer towards the both the group had been occupying. The Paloovians were distracted and if she needed to, Grace could duck under the table. The wrath of Buck is still hard to deal with, but it's deserved. A drunk Summer was leaning, more like laying, on Jax which brought a smile to her face. Space alcohol and the persuasion of Wolf must have lead to this. She took a seat next to the two, careful to not sit on a passed out Summer. With a simple nod in acknowledgement to her group, she observed the area, keeping a close eye on the Paloovians.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Wolf’s eyes fluttered open in confusion. Had she been asleep? She blinked a few times to clear her blurry vision. Wolf remembered a few things from the night’s events. She knew she was at Lealt’s. She knew she had convinced Summer to take a sip of Jixeon. She wasn’t sure when, but at one point she left the booth to get drinks. Though, a male and female alien had distracted her. She never saw their kind before. They reminded her of kittycats from Earth. Her eyes felt heavy, but she forced them to stay open. Something was off. She was being held in someone’s furry and warm arms. They were holding her bridal style as they leaned against the bar. Wolf licked her lips and winced. They tasted a bit bitter and herby. She touched her lips and pulled her fingers away. A giggle escaped her lips. Her finger tips were now covered in a glittery green substance. The sight oddly amused her.

When Wolf finally looked up, she realized she was being held by the female kittycat. She parted her lips to speak, but she didn’t know their language. Had she heard them speak before? It was hard to remember. Despite her hazy mind, she had a feeling she should try to escape. Wolf could see Jax and maybe even Summer at the booth. Wolf was distracted when she was adjusted in the alien’s arms. Surprisingly, the movement cause her left hand to hurt since it was against the alien’s body.

She looked at the palm of her left hand. It had five bright red scratches across it. Though, a clear liquid seemed to prevent the cuts from bleeding. Wolf closed her eyes as she tried to remember what happened. She remembered petting the female alien. Next the male slapped her hand away, his claws had given her the cuts. She opened her eyes as she felt ready to doze off. Wolf knew she had to get on her feet fast. She had to reach the ship, a hiding place, and or the others.

“Put me down?” she whispered, hoping the alien understood Standard Galactic. Wolf felt as if she had been sedated. The alien hissed and Wolf’s brain struggled to process the language. The alien said no. Wolf let out a soft sigh. She wondered what the alien wanted with her. Wolf was about to speak again, but the alien started to walk and she heard a familiar voice. Her eyes wandered over to the source of the voice. It was Buck. A smile graced her lips. He was irritated it seemed and talking to aliens. Wolf grew hopeful as they drew closer to him. If she could grab onto him, she could get some help with escaping the kittycat.

Though, Wolf realized seconds later she wouldn’t need his help. The male alien came out of nowhere and yanked Wolf out of the female’s arms. Wolf hit the ground, but she didn’t feel any pain. She knew she’d likely feel tender in the morning. Slowly she stretched out on the floor and turned onto her back. She listened as the two aliens argued. The argument was about her. The female wanted to take her home, but the male was against it. At the thought of being stolen away, she turned and slowly got to her hands and knees. She clumsily crawled over towards the sound of Buck’s voice. Wolf appeared behind Buck just as he reached for his weapon. Wolf got into a kneeling position. Her vision blurred. She knew she wouldn’t be able to stand on her own.

“Didn’t you hear me the first time?” she heard Buck say.

“Buck, help me up. Leave the aliens alone,” she said, her voice thankfully coming out clear. She was starting to feel a bit sober, but her body was too relaxed. Wolf still felt tired too. Tension filled her when she heard a series of hissing. She glanced back at the aliens that reminded her of kittycats. The female’s eyes were on her as the male tried to drag her off. Wolf felt panic rise inside of her quickly. She held a hand out so Buck could pull her up once he turned around. She cleared her throat and took a deep breath to push away the panic. Wolf knew she couldn’t freak out now.

“Buck. I need to hide before I get adopted by a kittycat,” she said, her voice now raised in volume. Wolf was starting to freak out and it annoyed her. If she was sober, she’d be fine with her current problem.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Jax was first alerted to Buck’s presence on his left by the shatter off glass, as a few drops of the blue liquid landed on his jacket. Jax looked down at the glowing blue liquid soaking into his jacket before his eyes wandered over to where Buck had intercepted the Paloovians. A move so common for Buck that it didn’t even warrant a full head turn from Jax, who just swiped as his jacket and nestled further into the booth.

Their team had plenty of responsible members who would deal with that. Or, well, they had Isaac.

Of course just as Jax justified ignoring one disaster, another blonde one appeared. Summer’s giggling and red rimmed eyes made it fairly obvious someone had talked to into drinking, which didn’t bother Jax, he’d just wished she’d done it earlier. Like, illegally, back in high school, like most of them had.

"Hmmm, I could use another drink, but I think I'll rest a bit."

Jax raised an eyebrow as the Blonde took a tumble straight on top of him. He’d been reclining in the booth, with his legs kicked up on the table, and she’d fallen onto the seat next to him with her whole torso on top of his lap.

"Ooops! I fell! Hehehe sorry Jaxy. Mmmm you feel sooooo goooood. I think I'll just stay here." His reflexes kicked in and his arms raised up out of her way, as she proceeded to turn around and actually snuggle in.

Both Jax’s eyebrows had practically crawled into his hairline, and he sat still as a statue. He’d never really been much of a snuggler, even his mother had complained that her only baby had never wanted to have ‘cuddles’. So this was a particularly new experience for him. Eventually, she stopped moving and when Jax looked down her eyes were shut.

“Jaxy?”
He whispered to himself, utterly bemused. He even looked around for Wolf, convinced she was playing some sort of trick on him.

“Summer.” He said prodding her with a finger. “Summer. Summer.” She didn’t respond and so Jax shrugged and eased back into the booth. Smothering a yawn, he grabbed his drink off the table and ignored the snoozing blonde still attached to his chest.
Then Grace appeared and took a seat next to him. He gave her a little, lazy half smile and mock salute.

Their quiet didn’t last long though as Buck’s dispute became hard to ignore. “Didn’t you hear me the first time?” Buck said, and Jax got a good look at him reaching for his weapon. He sighed and shot Grace an annoyed look, where was Isaac when you needed a straight laced kind of guy?

Looking at the mild-mannered Grace and dozing Summer, Jax realised he was their best bet, which was a shocking and horrifying fact.

He peeled himself out from under Summer and eased past Grace. He downed the last of his glowing blue glass and stepped in between Buck and aliens. He sighed and threw a hand in the air in a lazy surrender before summoning his best Standard Galactic.
“Look Paloovians, I don’t know, I think Buck just means-“ The rest of his words were strangled off, and his neck was literally strangled by one of the Paloovians who held him up dangling in the air.

Jax for his part, hung there choking as his vision went spotty. He regretted most of what had just happened, and realised quickly why it was easier to let Isaac deal with these things. The guy with a cannon for an arm never ended up being strangled. Of course, then Wolf turned up clawing at Buck’s leg talking about kitty cats. And they all wondered why Jax hadn’t wanted to come out tonight…

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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So many things were happening at once, it made Buck’s head spin.

Fortunately for him, he fed off the annoyance threading from the Paloovian in waves. It pulsed, spilled over. Tensed his shoulders even more, made his anger justified. It pooled from them like the glowing drink dripping off the creature’s clawed foot. Maybe he’d got it wrong. Maybe they weren’t looking for a good time, and one of the girl’s screwed them out of money. Made more sense, the way they were going on. Out of the corner of his eye, he spotted Summer slithering past him, nearly bumping into his shoulder, before plopping down into Jax’s lap.

She, at least, was fine. Drunk, but in one piece. Safe. Not knowing where the others were rankled his nerves, made him want to escalate the situation further. Push until this Paloovian pushed back. The thing huffed out yellow smog from its lips, which peeled back from pointed teeth. It seemed to look to its companions, clicking its tongue. He didn’t know what it was saying—if it was saying anything at all. Couldn’t understand him. Not that he’d admit it, but he wished Wolf was here. Then, she could tell them to fuck off properly. It usually worked. For whatever reason, alien’s didn’t respond well to their spoken language. Probably thought it was an affront to their damned race.

Another muscle jumped along his jawline as the Paloovian’s claw sunk deeper into his collarbone, forcing him a step backwards. Pricking uncomfortably into his skin. They were bigger than him. Seemed as if most aliens towered over them, unfortunately. It made it harder to stand toe-to-toe with them, though it didn’t really stop him from trying. He’d earned more broken bones than he could count from picking fights with them; humans were fragile, in comparison. It pissed him off.

A familiar face bobbed into his peripherals. Fiery hair bobbing past. Grace seemed to be picking her way carefully across the bar in a way that he recognized immediately. He tore his gaze away from the Paloovian’s ugly face, and watched as she plopped down at the table Jax and Summer inhabited. All trouble. It oozed from her; that caution he’d become so attuned to. Though he wasn’t sure of the specifics, he could guess pretty damn well what had happened. Didn’t mean he’d step down and apologize. “There ain’t no girl you’re looking for here—”

A tugging at the hem of his shirt distracted him enough to drop his hand from the hilt of the pistol, tucked safely into the hostler strapped to his back. He dropped his gaze and spotted Wolf there, sprawled at his feet. His mouth worked for a question and snapped shut, eyebrows jamming together. Where the hell did she even come from? A huff of breath hissed past his lips as he looked in the direction she’d crawled from, ears straining for sounds. Two more aliens, furred bastards, heatedly pointing towards Wolf. Abandoning his pistol, Buck pushed the Paloovian’s hand away and took a step backwards, creating some distance, and for whatever reason, the alien seemed inclined to let him. He leaned off to the side, and grabbed onto Wolf’s forearm, hauling her back to her feet, but maintained his grip on her arm.

To keep her steady. To keep her from running off. To keep himself anchored. He wasn’t sure anymore, but the room span and everything seemed too damn loud in his ears. Too full.

Whatever calm he’d amassed in himself dissolved as soon as Jax pushed himself between them, unsuccessfully. He was two seconds away from telling him to step off. But, once the Paloovian’s clawed, meaty hand wrapped itself around his neck and pulled him off he ground, Buck reacted instinctively. He couldn’t think around the pounding in his head. He released his grip on Wolf and immediately freed his pistol from his back, jamming it underneath the alien’s face, nestled under its ridged chin. A furious breath puffed out. “Let him go or I’ll blow your brains out.” He pressed the muzzle of the pistol harder, insistent, desperate, “Understand that?”

There was a clattering of noise in the background. Then, silence. Uncomfortable, heavy. Curious eyes already turning to stare at them.

Humans, making trouble again.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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It always amazes Isaac that some concepts are universal, like bars for example. No matter where there's always people looking to drown their sorrows, trying to find some sort of escape from themselves, or life at the bottom of a bottle. Though he supposes there's a certain comfort in knowing that no matter how far they go in the endless black sea that is space, or how strange the lifeforms they encounter it's all more of the same, just with a different coat of paint. For the most part aliens were basically the same as humans, they had the same wants, desires, and vices as any human being.

But then again some aliens were about as far from human as they could possibly get, like the one that "sat" across the table from Isaac in a private room on the upper floor at Lealt's. Rather than sitting the alien was floating above the chair, it's body was translucent and round and filled with some kind of dark-grey gas swirling around inside, looking almost like a thunderstorm, along with having four tentacles dangling down. Instead of a visible brain it had a web of neurons, much like a nerve net in jellyfish. This nerve net glowed brightly, and pulsated, switching between pink, and light blue. It was from a species called the Zroushesh, a species with no verbal communication, and instead relied on visual signals from their bioluminescent nerve net. This made communication difficult, but not impossible. Thankfully this particular Zroushesh, some merchant named Bemso, had a robot servant to translate to other species. The robot was sleek, and shiny, looking almost brand new. It was rather out of place in the dirty dive bar.

On the table between them sat a hookah-like device, and the robot held the tube to Bemso's body, and a purple gas released into it's body. Isaac meanwhile was sipping on a glass of a green liquid, a drink called Preiwox, something that was alcoholic to some species, though humans weren't one of them. Isaac preferred to remain clear headed, especially since nine times out of ten the others would end up causing trouble that he would have to fix. "I have a shipment of Tronacite Crystals for a client on Zaoter IV, but it's been difficult to find a transport ship on such short notice. And you have come highly recommended from Lealt." The robot translated in Standard Galactic, thankfully over the past five years Isaac has become fluent enough to be able to use it without the help of Rosemary.

"Hmm....Zaoter IV? Bit of a difficult trip, pirates have been steadily getting more active around there." Isaac said as he placed his glass on the table. "It's nothing we haven't handled before, so it shouldn't be too difficult. As for payment, we'll take twenty-five percent of the profit, half upfront, and half upon completion. That's our standard rate." They're used to dealing with dangerous aliens, and pirates aren't anything new. The robot translated what Isaac said back to it's master with a series of flashing lights coming from it's singular eye. Bemso took a moment to think it over before it answered with it's own series of flashes. "This is acceptable. I will send you the location, and time to pick of the cargo. I look forward to working with you."

With their business meeting done Isaac left the room, leaving Bemso to finish whatever it was smoking. Almost as soon as he stepped out of the room did he hear a commotion coming from the bottom level. And of course it had to be coming from the others. It always comes from the others.

Isaac got down to bottom level as fast as could, just in time to catch Buck holding his pistol to the head of the large alien that was holding up Jax. "Enough." Isaac calmly walked over to them, almost exuding authority. "Put the gun down. And put him down. Now." Whatever was going on that seemed to be the best place to start to calm things down. Isaac and the alien stared each other down, and after what seemed like an eternity the alien finally released Jax. "Let me handle this."

"Where girl!?" Isaac's eyes instantly drifted towards Wolf, it was usually a safe bet that when trouble is stirred up it had something to do with Wolf. "No! Red girl!" That would be his second guess. His eyes lingered towards Summer and Grace at a booth, the guilt on her face pretty telling. The alien's eyes followed Isaac's, and once he laid eyes on Grace he let out a loud roar, and pointed at her. He began to storm over to her, but Isaac reached out, grabbing his arm before he could go.

"You're dealing with me no-" Before he could finish his sentence the alien swung around, bringing his beefy fist towards Isaac's head. At the last second Isaac managed to bring up his right arm to protect himself. While his right arm looked no different than his left, appearances can be deceiving, and in reality his entire right was replaced by a cybernetic one that housed his plasma cannon. This arm was much tougher, and stronger than his regular one. Pretty handy when he wanted to surprise assailants with some superhuman strength without having to use his Overdrive function.

The alien was surprised to say the least. "For the record, you threw the first punch." Isaac took a deep breath, and quickly let it out, activating his Overdrive implant. Now he needed to get this over with quickly. Isaac punched the alien in the gut with his free arm, causing the alien to stumble back, and double over in pain. Isaac grabbed the alien by the back of his shirt, and tossed him into one of his buddies with little effort. As they toppled over the third one rushed towards Isaac, as it swung it's massive fist towards him, Isaac threw his right fist into his. The collision caused a disturbing cracking sound as a piece of the alien's wrist bone jetted out of it's wrist.

The alien howled in pain as he cradled his wrist. While it was screaming Isaac delivered a powerful uppercut, actually lifting up the beefy alien a few feet off the ground before he fell down. Once he was down it wasn't long before the other two rejoined the fray. The leader punched Isaac across his face, causing him to stagger backwards. That's gonna sting when he comes down. The other alien rushed over to join his leader in double teaming him. A flurry of punches followed as Isaac exchanged blows with the two, using his increased speed, and strength to try to defend himself from them, forcing him back.

'I don't have time for this!' Isaac kicked the leader in his knee, forcing him down, and gave his lackey a right cross, causing him to stumble backwards. Isaac grabbed the leader, and tossed him several feet away across the room. The lackey rushed Isaac, and tackled him to the ground, all the while shouting what was no doubt unsavory words in his native language. As the alien mounted him, Isaac's right arm began to transform, turning inside out with everything below his elbow turning to a plasma cannon. Before the alien could start wailing on him, Isaac pressed his cannon to his ribs. A bright green blast fired from the cannon, forcing the alien several feet into the air. At point blank range his cannon caused a large hole straight through him.

Isaac pulled himself up, and took in several deep breaths. "I....I think it's time to go. Any objections?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Wolf was grateful when Buck pulled her up and kept his grip. Though, the movement made her see doubles. She closed her eyes as she noted to thank him later. Wolf heard Jax speak, but it took her a second to realize he stopped. Her eyes fluttered open when Buck let go. Wolf eyes stayed on Buck as he pulled out his pistol. It was hard to focus her thoughts, but she knew something was wrong. When her eyes wandered over to the alien, fury and fear raged in her. She felt hot and cold.

Jax was lifted in the air…by his throat. She glanced at the pistol Buck had jammed into the alien. Wolf wanted to tell him to shoot, but she couldn’t remember how to talk. She noticed the silence, but focused on clearing her mind. She knew she had to do something. The issue was that her mind was chaotic with thoughts. Slowly, her mind cleared. She was ready to grab one of her hidden blades, but then Isaac appeared. She glared lasers at the alien as Isaac spoke to them.

When the alien released Jax, her super reflexes kicked in. Before the alien fully let go of Jax, she caught him. Well, she caught him enough to help keep him standing up. The last thing she wanted was for him to get even more hurt by hitting the floor. Once she was sure he wouldn’t fall, she wrapped an arm around his waist. Her heart was pounding. Her face was blank, but fear made her feel cold. She thought it was fear that made her feel cold anyways.

“Are you okay?” she whispered, not really expecting an answer. She was aware the alien was after Grace. She even knew Isaac was fighting the trio now, but she was focused on Jax. Wolf was staring at him. She was scared he’d just drop dead. Wolf wanted to keep an eye on him to confirm he was alive. She only nodded when Isaac spoke.

“Let’s go Jax, we need to get you on the ship,” she said. Without a second though, she nudged Jax so he could walk to the ship. Wolf didn’t plan on leaving his side. Hell, she planned on leaving her arm around his waist until he sat or laid down. Thanks to him being the one who came closest to meeting death tonight, she’d be his shadow for the next few days. Wolf felt her anger rise at the thought, but she brushed it away. She had to make sure Jax was safe and well.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Summer felt like she was floating between a few layers. Like between the realms of awake and sleep. It was a very unsettling feeling. She also felt sick to her stomach. Where was she? How would she get back? She felt herself move as something warm entered her. Unknown to Summer, this was when Jax moved her and tried waking her up. When things settled, she felt herself sink deeper into sleep. This felt much more soothing, even though her stomach was still queasy.

This moment of stillness would last long as noises started penetrating her unconsciousness, and she slowly started to wake up. However, she wouldn't become fully awake though when Isaac started to get physical with the aliens. She jolted upward when he used his plasma cannon and gasped.

The blast caught her off guard so much that she was brought back to when her life changed forever because there was a series of blasts too. She was actually prepared to run again, but her mind, although pounding, started to function and she took in stock of her situation.

Where was she? She looked around and remembered she and her fellow humans were celebrating their 5 year anniversary and she finally gave into trying alcohol. From there everything was a blur. Oh gosh, just what had she been doing? Her cheeks turn red in embarrassment. She felt awful, physically too. Like her mouth was dry, her head was pounding, and her stomach felt worse then when it did when she was on her monthly. She wish she had a mirror. At least her brain was working. She looked around again to see Grace next to her, Isaac suggesting they leave, Buck nearby, and Wolf helping Jax. She saw the remains of an alien who had been obviously blasted by Isaac. It was then she remembered Isaac's words.

"You'll have no objection from me. I feel awful! she replied.

It was then her stomach started to twitch and she stumbled from her seat and raced for the nearest restroom. She got there just in time and when she returned, she was sheet white and exhausted.

"That's the last time I have any of that . . . . stuff. No more drinking for me." she stammered, her voice cracking, eying Wolf with that last bit.

She started heading for the ship, frustrated she wasn't strong enough to help Jax.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Jax can’t say he is entirely aware of the events that led to his release. What, with the blurriness of his vision, and burning in his lungs, he was slightly predisposed. Though he was entirely aware of his release. The sudden and unexpected intake of breath. The floor beneath his feet. Of course, he only managed to stay upright, wheezing, but upright, due to Wolf’s arm wrapped around his torso.

It took the entirety of the ensuing fight for Jax to regain any sort of normal breathing, and stop his lungs from hacking at air. Though regaining his breath and feeling decidedly calmer, Jax surveyed the alien with the giant hole blasted through its middle.

He rubbed at his, probably bruising neck, and caught Buck’s eye. “I’d like to see you do something like that.”
His voice was husky, but was, like usual, devoid of much enthusiasm.

He looked down at Wolf still attached to his waist staring back up at him with a blank face. He wondered how in the last ten minutes he had ended up with two girls wrapped around him as if he seemed the cuddle-y sort.

Isaac suggested it was time to head off. And Wolf repeated that sentiment, but with a lot more sensitivity to Jax’s sore neck, which he was still rubbing at. He seemed unable to stop prodding at his neck, like a child who pokes their bruises. Jax couldn’t think of a single thing that would make him want to come back to Lealt’s at a later date, let alone stay now. So he let Wolf prod him along.

“No more drinking for me." Summer announced re-joining the group on their way out.

Jax gave a lazy grin and motioned at Wolf still attached to his waist. “Good choice, with me already taken.” He then paused, and leaned on Wolf to nod at Buck. “And, I just don’t think he’s the snuggle-y type.”

He continued his way out of Lealt’s, and arrived the docking station, where an alien with five blue arms, and a green waist coat was waiting at a podium. He shrugged at Wolf, “Well, I don’t have the parking ticket.”

Seeing as Lealt’s was its own large ship in the middle of space, rather than a terrestrial planet, the group were forced to leave their ship to be parked by the valets. Lealt, like most spaced-based establishments, hired aliens who could sustain their life in space without atmosphere and whatnot. Thus they could park and, later, retrieve the ships from external parking yards without, you know, dying.

An identical alien appeared, and spoke in its natural language to the first alien. They went back and forth a couple times, Jax was sure Wolf could understand whatever they were saying but he felt no inclination to request a translation. Finally the first alien turned towards them. “The humans? With that orange thing.”

Jax nodded, not minding the clear attitude. The trouble they were currently legging it away from kind of made the humans part understandable. And as for orange thing, well, their ship had been an old model five years ago when they purchased it second-hand. Not a single one of them could understand what possessed the previous owner to decided on the visually assaulting paint job. Plus, even with Summer’s abilities, well, there were a few pieces here and there they weren’t fully attached.

Hey, it still got them from A to B. Jax didn’t see the issue, it had been a bargain.

The Valet spoke into an ear piece and after a few minutes the large circular door behind the valet opened. It revealed a chamber about the size of a double-storey house in which their ship was currently parked.

Wolf didn’t let up and she followed Jax around the ship and deposited him in the passenger seat. His usual spot, seeing as he was navigating. In the back there wasn’t a whole lot of space, but enough, at the back there was some bench space, and U-couch that surrounded a small table.

“So, who had the best night then?” Jax asked sarcastically as he rubbed at his neck and kicked his feet up on the dashboard.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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Wolf eyes wandered over to Summer as she spoke. When Summer finished speaking, she couldn’t help it. She rolled her eyes. Wolf swear she just told her to take a sip. She didn’t tell her to drink so much that she’d feel like shit. Wolf was tempted to say so, but then Jax spoke. A smile graced her lips when he spoke. She contained her laugh to not cause any trouble. She wanted to get Jax home as soon as possible.

His neck looked like it may be bruising, but she couldn’t tell as her vision was acting up. She had to take a deep breath. She felt dizzy. Wolf looked where Jax did and listened to his next words. Her smile grew as she imagined Buck being the snuggly type. She wondered what Buck would do if someone did decide to snuggle up to him. It gave her an idea that she mentally stored away.

For now, she focused on helping Jax out of Lealt’s. Wolf was confused when he mentioned the parking ticket. Did she have it? Her memory was all mixed up and not fitting together. What the hell happened with the female kittycat? She got lost into her thoughts until Jax started to move again. Redundantly, she deposited him into the passenger seat. Wolf wanted to bring him to the back to make sure he was okay, but she knew he had to navigate.

Wolf crossed her arms and noticed the icy temperature of her skin. She allowed everyone to get inside the ship before she took the seat nearest to the door. Wolf wanted to help Jax out once they landed. She crossed her ankles. Before leaning back, she crossed her arms and closed her eyes. Wolf focused on her breathing as she tried to remember the night. Though, she was then distracted by Jax’s question. A soft laugh escaped her lips.

“Mmmm, I can’t even remember my night much. I must have had the best one,” she said before a soft sigh escaped her lips. Wolf kept her expression neutral during the ride, but her eyes fluttered open when they landed. Quickly she got up, exited the ship, and opened Jax’s door. She flashed him a devilish grin before she glanced at Summer. Wolf remembered the comment Jax made about him being taken.

“Come on lover, I promise not to choke you tonight,” she said once her gaze returned to Jax. She held a hand out for him to take. Wolf knew he would noticed her icy skin, but hopefully he wouldn’t say anything. As she waited for his hand, she looked him over slowly. Wolf guessed he looked lively enough and was pleased. She didn’t need him dying.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Riley Jaxon Character Portrait: Isaac Clarke Character Portrait: Grace Cooper Character Portrait: Summer Montgomery Character Portrait: Buckley Groves Character Portrait: Rosemary A. Wolf

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A breath puffed past Bucks’ lips. An exhale, harsh. He felt the room spin. Revolve. As if it were taking a larger breath, huffing it around him. All caustic heat billowing past his ears, no relief. He didn’t hear Isaac stomping over to them until he was at his side, all calm demeanor; something he didn’t feel. Something he hardly ever felt these days. Those were emotions that felt like small, ineffectual tides, pushing idly against a violent swell. It did nothing to calm his nerves, and it took everything inside of him to loosen his grip on the alien, pulling the muzzle away from the Paloovian’s scaly face.

Because Isaac knew better. Always did. Still. Still.

Gritting his teeth, Buck finally allowed some space for Isaac to step in. He kept his pistol in hand. Just in case. Finger idly sliding the outside of the trigger, only a hairs breath away. Just in case. Sometimes, he hoped things went south. Just to quieten the noise, dampen it a little. Didn’t take Isaac long to wrangle the situation at hand. Busted a hole as big as three fists; ended things nicely. The leader pushed itself to his feet and shook its head, breath hazy, eyes blinking. He raised his pistol, and inclined his chin in the opposite direction. A quick nod. Get lost. Witnessing what just happened—alien was smart enough to stagger in the opposite direction.

Things like this didn’t help their case. Humans. He understood that well enough. Though, it wasn’t their fault. Like Isaac said… guy hit ‘em first. Several eyes swung in their direction. Unintelligible chatter, in different languages. Another swell of emotion. Disgust? Confusion? Fear. Fear. It was the heaviest of them all, weighed down like a wet blanket. Dragging down like anchors tied to his ankles. He hated that the most. “Yeah, best get outta’ here while we can,” he tucked his pistol away and glanced at Jax and Wolf.

Good. He was breathing. For someone who didn’t like sticking his nose in things, he always managed to get himself in situations like this. Hurt. As if it wouldn’t happen, because he didn’t care at all. Too much trouble. Best stick in the background. A walking target. He wondered, sometimes. Buck knuckled at his nose, and took the lead. Slightly ahead of the others, though he occasionally peeked backwards. Making sure they were good enough to walk on their own two feet.

No more drinking for me. Where’d he hear that before?

Buck made a noise, scoffing at Jax’ comment. A soft mm’hm. Whether or not he was agreeing with the statement was anyone’s guess. He wasn’t cuddly. He didn’t rub elbows with the girls like Jax did. Didn’t make sly jokes, as if it were easy as pie. Slick tongue as his, it was a wonder he didn’t get into any more trouble, for all of his efforts to stay out of things. While they stepped out of the valet, his thoughts swam, spilling over. “What was up with that, anyway? Stickin’ your neck out like that—” it came out meaner than he’d meant to. Maybe. All bite, with a side of bark. He shook his head and stormed ahead, clambering up the ramp and into their ship; all sunshine colors, an affront to anyone’s eyes.

Only once they’d all boarded did he do his rounds, checking up on them without so much as a word. Checking to see if they were fine, without the embarrassment of letting them know that’s what he was doing. Summer would feel like shit, but she was alive and well. Nothing some rest wouldn’t help. Isaac would have some bruises, but he was tough. Wolf would mother-hen Jax until he fell asleep, and Grace was fine, probably thought the whole thing was hilarious. He plopped down on the U-couch and leaned his head back against the cushion, mouth set into a hard line. The swell was quieter here. Sure, he could feel Wolf’s worries; Summer’s disappointment. But they were fine, safe on the ship.

Home. As close to home as Earth had felt, anyway.

“This night’ll get better when we get off this rock.”