"Here Kitty Kitty Kitty"
[Previous post: "Fear Can Be a Dangerous Thing or a Powerful Ally"]

Setting: YUDARA Asteroid Field, Planetoid, Trade Center, Market Place
Stardate: 63073.2015

The idea of being a betrothed Kerelian prancing around inviting others to challenge another man's claim now more than ever seemed a bad idea to the ANUBIS' aCMO.  An increasing number of man and creatures she could only surmised had been the male of some strange alien race had taken time to look her way to study the woman and her dress.

More than once Adriana had found herself fidgeting with the bracelets around her wrists, wondering if maybe she should not have had a few more there to increase the odds in her favor.  The only thing having kept Ensign Lopez from running back to the designated transport coordinates for an emergency egress had been the calm and collect presence of the Kzinti huntress a few paces back.

Adriana had managed to catch a few glimpses of the ANUBIS' Sec/Tac officer as she looked over her shoulders to study some of the men gawking at the bride-to-be.  Luckily for the aCMO most of these aliens seemed aware of the antiquated culture and the significance of the dress, those who had not been knowledgeable about it having been held back by friends who did.

This left the betrothed Kerelian open to the verbal jeers of many who knew that only a physical challenge could be answered.  As vulgar as some of the comment and stares had been so far though no one had dared to accept the challenge, a fact that had made the Ensign exceptionally glad.

"I'd watch out for that one," a green skinned Orion woman whispered to the Kerelian as the two came within earshot of one another.  "She looks like the type that might enjoy claiming you as a prize."

The aCMO remained stunned for a moment then stopped and glanced in the general direction indicated by the Orion woman, curious and terrified to see what matter of beast the green skinned passer-by had meant to bring to the Kerelian's attention.  To Adriana's surprise and puzzlement though all she noted in that direction had been the Kzinti huntress.  Could it be that Hex had been the one she the warning had been about?  It was true that the Sec/Tac appeared somewhat formidable in her outfit despite her 5'2" frame, but Ensign Lopez could not bring herself to see what the Orion woman had seen.  After all what kind of prize could a Kzinti huntress want with a betrothed Kerelian woman?

A shiver swept through the curly haired woman as one possibility for the warning came into focus in the aCMO's mind.  She had come to hear some stories and legends pertaining to the Kzinti people while back on CESTUS III, stories and legends that Adriana had never dared to ask Hex about for fear that they had been completely untrue and would offend her friend.  Actually, part of Ensign Lopez had also reasoned that not asking would insure that she would not be made to find out if these graphic tales, either in part or in whole, had indeed been true.

Their current mission had proven to be a perfect excuse to not think about such things, atl east up until now.  Images her own head mounted on some wall as a trophy haunted the aCMO's next several steps to the point where Adriana failed to see something large and black having made its way in front of her.  Of course by the time the betrothed Kerelian had made this realization it had been too late and Adriana impacted against the imposing form with as little grace as could be imagined.

A vague sensation of skin-tight leather and fur covered muscles had imprinted itself into Ensign Lopez' mind as she attempted to understand what had happened while struggling to get back to her feet. The impact had been such that the betrothed Kerelian had landed face first on the ground, facing away from the wall she had encountered.

Thanks to the dress, the task of getting back to her feet had proven to be a rather difficult one but eventually the aCMO managed to find her way back to an upright position.  Once on her feet she pivoted on her heels to see that the imposing figure in front of her stood a great deal taller than she did.

Once Adriana had managed to identify the species of this mountain that she had ran into, her breath became so short that she feared passing out do to the lack of oxygen.  If the betrothed Kerelian had received a warning because of the Kzinti huntress who had been following her, what matter of alarm should the aCMO have been expecting after having collided with a larger, meaner looking Kzinti bounty hunter?

Marissa Montonera-Lombardi (mmlm24@gmail.com)

Ensign Adriana Lopez
Assistant Chief Medical Officer