Die Hard the Hunters Part 2
The Roulies were large bipedal primitives with amazing hunting instincts of their own. They looked like a humanoid mix of a wolf and a boar. They were savage. But the Science Council believed that they had great potential to be a powerful people like humans one day. Yea, powerful enough to find a million ways to kill each other, like the humans do today. Powerful enough to infest the galaxy with their deviant and corrupting cultures.
Such self loathing in one’s personality was probably unhealthy, Tyra thought but it was how she felt. Who would miss one or two of these beasts?
Tyra psychologists would say that the want to kill a fellow sentient being was psychosis. Perhaps, but growing up a big game hunter with her father, she learned to appreciate the hunt and the kill. In her life, passion skirted the fine edge of psychosis.
It was the thrill of doing something illegal but also something that could potentially kill her that drove her. These things were notoriously savage. They slaughtered the first observation teams that arrived to this world along the twelve Terran Imperial marine escort.
They observed a small village of the Roulies just after the hunters had returned with something that was a cross between a wooly mammoth and hippopotamus. The hunters were already cutting it up and a celebration had started.
“It would be more exciting to get one of the hunters while they were on the hunt,” Dadras said.
“That might take longer than we have, Dadra. That beast looks like it will feed that village a couple of days.” Tyra said.
Brade signed “Can we just pick one and go?”
The primitives were already cooking up some of the meat while their shamans were blessing the meat before it was eaten.
“Let’s wait until morning. ” Tyra said. “We’ll camp out over there on that ridge, in those trees.”
Brade sighed harder, realizing this was going to take longer than she had thought.
Brade could not sleep. It was miserable for her. She liked the hunt part but the camping part is something she could do without. Camping on a volcanic jungle planet made it even worse. She was returning from relieving herself when a sound draw her attention. The pre-dawn light from the red dwarf star did not illuminate as well as her homeworld’s yellow star and she left her night vision goggles in her stand. She also left her rifle. Idiot.
She crouched and took her hunting knife from the sheat, looking around in the shadowy loom of Roulrad III morning. She hardly saw the fast moving beast heading towards her or the powerful that penetrated her abdomen. She only had time to stare down at the lance that had her pinned against the tree before she died.
“Where is Brade?” Tyra was tired of her new young competition. But in order to enjoy the privileges that her rich husband provides, she had to tolerate and share. Being common place in her culture, a polyamorous relation was something she was used to.
“Well, I would not recommend screaming her name right now” Dadra said as he watched the village from his tree stand tent using his pair of electro-binocs. “We’ve got movement.”
The village elders and fire tenders were already stirring but there was no sign of the hunters. For the first time, Dadra noticed the stand rock formation near the fire. Apparently, they used it to tell stories. It had drawings all over it depicting their hunting trips and raids on other villages. One particluar drawing seemed odd. What is that? Three figures…
A spear penetrated the bonics on through his head. His body fell from the tend into the ground near Tyra, who was already geared up. She didn’t panic. She just lowered her rifle in the direction of the spear and fired. Out of the jungle came a Roulie hunter that took a blast from her hunting plasma rifle square in the chest. It feel silent to the ground.
Instead of pure fear, Tyra suddenly felt pure excitement and exhilaration. She ran into the jungle seeking a place to hide but she knew her hunters had gotten her sent. Now this is a hunt! She had to lose them and find some high ground and gain some kind of advantage on her pursuers.
Tyra awoke, hanging from a pole, arms and legs tied over it. How cliched, she thought. After a valiant fight, taking down a dozen of them or more, she remembers getting hit on the side of the head by a glancing blow from a spear and falling from her position in a tree to the ground. They must have collected her up line a hunt prize. Beside her were the dead bodies of Dadra and Brade both tied to poles as well. They were getting ready to cook Brade first.
Something on the rock outcropping near the fire drew her attention. There as a drawing but nothing like the others. While most depicts hunts of mammoth-hippos and raids against other Roulie tribes, one particular drawing seemed all too familiar. Three green figures with sticks that could shoot fire. What the hell? The picture gave the Roulies all the information – a number, the general direction – on the hunting party. What the hell? Someone warned them?