Atlak collapsed to the ground at the sight of Mellor being crushed underneath
the massive weigh of the Pikatan, as if the blow had crushed him as well. He
quickly returned to his feet and sprinted to his fallen parent. He kneeled
next to Mellor, knowing he did not survive the blow he closed his parent's
eyes and bowed his head for a moment.
He stood breathing heavily with a fire burning in his eyes, his distaste for
the Pikatan now as hot as Altoos over the Lokai desert. He quickly ran back
to where he had been working earlier and gathered a few lengths of rope and
his staff. Henul, a friend of Atlak noticed him gathering his supplies and
quickly ran up to him and placed his hand on his shoulder.
"You could do nothing to prevent this, don't let revenge kill you as well"
Henul said looking deeply into his friends eyes.
Atlak sighed and looked up at his friend, "I don't plan to kill it, but I
will not let this beast roam the lands looking for another victim. Something
scared this Pikatan, perhaps something life threatening to us all, I must
"You always were stubborn Atlak. You've been my friend for as long as I can
remember, I won't let you do this alone. Now quickly, before the elders
notice our leaving."
They two packed a few essentials they might need and swiftly moved into the
brush where the Pikatan had left the Unarra encampment. They easily spotted
the tracks of the out of control beast and followed them into the dense
jungle west of the camp. They noticed the tracks were not straight, it almost
appeared as the beast hobbled away which was unusual, for the Pikatan's that
were kept were extremely coordinated in their movements. The tracks led them
miles away turning in random directions every so often. Sometimes the tracks
would run up against trees and rocks.
"I think it's gone insane" Atlak whispered to his companion as they noticed a
large circle of tracks in the middle of a clearing.
A loud snort was heard off in the distance, both Unarra crouched down behind
a nearby tree at the sound. They nodded to each other knowing the Pikatan was
near. Atlak whispered his plan to Henul as they tied 2 lengths of rope
together. They both got up and ran on the far side of the Pikatan to get
ahead, making sure not to be spotted by the crazed beast. When they were a
few hundred yards ahead before they stopped at an appropriate spot. They
found two trees that appeared the Pikatan would cross between when it reach
the young Unarra. They laid the rope across the ground between the two trees,
making sure to camouflage it with leaves and branches, and each holding one
end of the rope climbed the tree's and climbed out to a branch where they
would be able to look down at the crossing Pikatan.
Moments later the Pikatan came into view, tossing and turning its head from
side to side as if fighting some invisible pain. It moved closer to where the
Unarra hid in the trees, walking awkwardly and they noticed a white crust
forming around its eyes and mouth. The Pikatan moved steadily on, now about
100 feet from the two trees. Henul shifted nervously at the approaching
Pikatan, but then the beast stopped, quickly darting it's head side to side
and sniffing the air carefully. Atlak watched intensely at the searching
creature, for this may be their only chance. The Pikatan noticed a small
creature scurrying off behind a log and continuing walking as if in relief.
Atlak watched the Pikatan's every step as it approached the rope, it was now
only a few feet away from the set trap. It took two more steps and Atlak
signaled his friend Henul, with a mighty pull both Unarra pulled the rope up
behind the talons below the Pikatan's mouth onto his neck. The Pikatan looked
up with vicious eyes as Atlak jumped off the branch to the other side of the
beast skidding in the dirt to stop as his friend did the same. The rope was
wrapped once around it's neck as they tightly gripped the ends of the rope
and ran towards the trees to tie them off. Their captive let out a roar and
crouched low to the ground, the young Unarra saw this and stopped, wrapping
the rope tightly around their wrists. The Pikatan jumped into the air pulling
the two off their feet and throwing them under the Pikatan nearly hitting
each other. Atlak struggled to keep his balance but managed to stay up and
pulled harder on the rope as a large cloud of dust shot at him from the
Pikatan's landing, the rope tightened firmly from now being wrapped around
twice. Henul couldn't keep his ground from the throw and hit the ground hard.
He got to one knee wincing in pain, then turned back to the Pikatan who stood
not 15 feet away. He swallowed hard as he looked into the large yellow
bloodlust filled eyes glaring straight at him.
As Atlak watched he noticed a stream of blood running down the enraged
creature's right leg, he looked quickly to find the source of a wound and
noticed a small creature attached to the Pikatan's inner thigh. He knew what
it was, the master tamers of his village had described them many times in the
past, and this one fit what he had been told perfectly besides a strange
coloring. The creature was called a nirvir, or a type of parasite that
feasted, but did not harm animals such as the Pikatan. When it attaches
itself it induces a drug like substance into the creature calming it and
nulling the pain of the bite. It appeared this nirvir was doing the exact
opposite and may have been carrying some type of virus. Henul looked up in
fear as 100 spines jutted out of the Pikatan's back and began charged him
with lightning speed. Henul stumbled backwards as he saw the beast charge him
with his head low, he watched in fear as his friend ran around a tree and
with a yell pulled the rope as hard as he could. The rope become taut around
the creatures neck and jerked him backwards as Atlak was slammed into the
tree. The rope become taut before the Pikatan hit Henul, but it didn't stop
it completely, it's snout hit him in the chest just barely missing one of the
razor sharp spines. He flew back through he air from the blow, tumbling to a
stop. Atlak let go of the rope and picked up his staff, he ran towards the
unsuspecting Pikatan who was occupied on making another charge at Henul. He
spun around swinging as hard as he could at the parasite attached to it's
back leg, hitting it square blood sprayed from the creature as the staff
completely smashing it's body. The Pikatan jumped onto it's hind legs
screeching, it finally fell sideways passing out from the immense pain as the
parasite slid of it's leg.
The two collapsed from their task, sighing deeply in relief. They
examined the nirvir closely, it looked sick as the Pikatan and must have had
some type of virus that was spread to the beast. They stayed with the Pikatan
until it awoke and was secure with the remaining ropes. Still recovering from
the incident and virus the Pikatan got up with a struggle. They guided the
wary beast back to the camp the rest of the day, the elders came up to greet
them on their arrival.
"What is the meaning of this?!? You were not permitted to follow the Pikatan"
scowled one of the elders.
"We apologize for not letting you know of our leave, but we couldn't let it
go on to kill others. We discovered a nirvir infected with some type of virus
attached to it's leg, that's why it went out of control" Atlak replied.
The elders spoke to each other for a few moments and nodded to the two in
This time the Unarra took the place of the lazy Kompa by letting a nirvir
take over the Pikatan and they paid dearly with the blood of an innocent.
Atlak spend the rest of his days becoming like his parent, he never took his
concentration off of the task at hand and never became lazy with such a
delicate balance on the line.