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                             Ch I
     Now everything made sense to Allyson. She\'d5d heard them in the hall almost all of her life, but now she understood. From the Torps\'d5 high giggly voices, the midrange sound of the Ccloffs, to the deep voices of the Stegs, speaking as they patrolled. Anybody who knew Allyson would not be surprised that she was translating five different languages into her own. After all, she did have a level seventeen Geffed education. When she had the slightest inkling that they were talking about Earth, Allyson began learning the language. Her first discovery was that the seventeenth Geffed level was the equivalent of a Master\'d5s degree on Earth.\par
     As she twirled her now white hair, Allyson thought about the great physical difference between her parents and her. They were huge lumbering lizards who had stood on their hind legs. When she was angered, her description spanned sarcasm\'d5s extremes. Either of her parents would be called a Tyrannosaurus. Allyson knew that she had Princess status, but did not understand how somebody as small rated this. In talks with the Time Adventurers who had crossed the light years and visited, she was told that she looked exactly like an ordinary Earthling. That was when she had flashes of the day she first met her present parents. She could not really understand anything, as she had been only two days old, but she wanted to remember. When she reached age sixteen, she fulfilled a promise to herself, and had a friend delve into the deep recesses of her mind. The first thing brought out was a high voice saying, \'d2We can\'d5t just leave her in this dumpster.\'d3 The next voice said, \'d2I guess you\'d5re right, but you know what it means if we take her.\'d3\par
     She thought of this as often as she looked in the mirror. Allyson liked looking in the mirror when Montel stood next to her. Montel had been her friend and companion for as long as she could conceptualize the fact that there were others. Along with Montel, she would vow to find out who her natural parents were, if possible. Her second, and more important vow was to never let anything \'d2tear her present family apart.\'d3\par
     Ah Montel! She remembered when she was in the marketplace twirling what was blond hair and saw a pink monkey. She fell in love instantly! So what if he had two sets of extra arms? Over the years, Allyson had found that Montel was also an adventurer. He could not do very much though, Montel was also basically a coward.\par
     Allyson had discovered that they were of different sexes many years ago, during their morning bath. This did not matter much to her. Montel was gregarious and sarcastic at the same time. He usually toned down the sarcasm until he knew the acquaintance quite well. Montel also dealt in their black market. He had one main objective, that was to find the approximate part of Earth that Allyson had come from. Finding Allyson\'d5s natural family was to be a surprise gift to her, if he could. The only contact that he had with Earth was through the Time Adventurers, and they did not know anything that he needed to hear. They did not choose where they were to be sent, luck was with Montel every once in awhile and some \'d4Adventurers had just come from Earth. All of the Time Adventurers knew to contact Montel if they had been to Earth. As he had Royal Family Status, it was an unwritten rule or law. Besides, Montel was getting the information for Princess Allyson, so they did whatever they could.\par
     Montel wondered if he\'d5d ever get his tail back. one of the Time Adventurers had been very gruff, and did not appreciate Montel being his sarcastic self. That \'d4Adventurer left the marketplace with a pink tail stuck in his belt. Montel did not mind the loss, but every time he and Allyson argued, he heard, \'d2Where is your tail?\'d3 Which embarrassed him, ending many of their arguments.\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     One day, Montel felt new sensations, but paid no attention to them. An Eco-Sweeper, a glorified street-sweeper told him that he had to find a woman. The exact phrase was, \'d2Ya got it bad pal, gotta find a woman!\'d3 Montel heard this in the town and thought that the woman was in town. He found one. Not a very pretty sight, but she was designed for total pleasure. After thirty minutes with her, Montel thought that it would be enough sex to last at least a year. He remembered that Allyson had also told him of feelings, but this had started approximately fifteen years ago. Now he knew what to tell Allyson, but did not know if he should. He could not describe how he felt afterwards. Vulnerable did not accurately describe it, but that was as close as he could come. Montel was usually so articulate that Allyson did not believe him now.\par
     \'d2So you think I\'d5m lying to you, huh?\'d3\par
\'d2Yes, I do. I think that you\'d5re hiding something.\'d3\par
     \'d2Allyson, what can I hide from you? We can read each\par
other\'d5s minds.\'d3\par
     \'d2I know, but don\'d5t tell anybody that. Only we found that tree, and it\'d5s in the forbidden outreaches.\'d3\par
     \'d2I\'d5m not gonna tell anybody.\'d3\par
     \'d2Good, now you fuzzy, pink, tailless...\'d3\par
     \'d2I had a tail, lost it for you.\'d3\par
     \'d2You\'d5re still tailless.\'d3\par
     \'d2Well, it\'d5s better than being smooth.\'d3\par
     \'d2You see my body everyday when we take our bath. And smooth?\'d5 Montel, that adjective doesn\'d5t fit me.\'d3\par
     Montel was stuck now. He knew that he was wrong, but could not waver in his argument. Allyson was too well built for him to ignore, and nothing about her was smooth. From her excellent breasts to the dip of her stomach. Her navel appeared as. if somebody had stuck their finger into unformed skin, to her very firm backside. Besides that, a good part of her chest and upper arms was covered by a design of bumps that resembled Emben Sat squares. This last part surprised Allyson\'d5s parents and everyone else who knew her. A new advance in plastic surgery had been discovered, but the doctor needed a volunteer to test his procedure. The procedure was the implantation of chips in the skin cells. At the time, her parents did not think that she was old enough to comprehend the importance of the operation. What she thought was just a design on her skin, was really a tracking grid. The grid sent out signals, and the equivalent of a simple radar-scope detected these signals. Allyson did not know that she could be tracked wherever she was. When she had that operation, her parents regarded it as good fortune being handed to them on a silver platter. At the time that it was done, they were on the verge of war with a horde of energy beings. Montel was thinking, \'d4What a mistake, she isn\'d5t smooth.\'d5 They looked at each other and soon started smiling. Montel knew that this meant the argument was over.\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     One day, one of the Ccloffs waddled in, picked Allyson up under her shoulders and threw her over its shoulder. Montel did not know what was going on, but what could a mere monkey do? When he took his first step, the Ccloff looked at him and growled. Montel knew that wherever Allyson was going, he was not invited. He took another look at the Ccloff and thought, \'d4Odd creature this.\'d5 Nobody would argue with him and the Ccloffs would be the first to agree. Ccloffs were six feet tall, with legs two feet long, and could be mistaken for great brown cushions until they moved. Their eyes were functional to a point, and their arms were three feet long with no elbows. Montel was always making fun of them by bending his six arms as he walked by them. Montel thought, \'d4Enough of this train of thought,\'d5 when he thought of Allyson and tried to establish a connection with her mind. When Allyson first suggested this, Montel laughed, until they succeeded at it. That was so many years ago, and it was repeated so often that it had almost become second nature. Allyson\'d5s mind told Montel that the Ccloff was taking her into the Grand Room. That had to mean that she was going to see her parents, because they were the only other ones allowed in there. Montel felt a sharp pain on the top of his head. His best guess was that Allyson was put down now, and not very gently. Ccloffs were not known for gentleness. For that matter, only the Torps were. Montel caught random thoughts from Allyson, but thought that the best course of action for him was to wait until she returned. He wished her luck until then as his only transmission. In a way, Allyson was glad that Montel was not going to be monitoring this meeting because it took some concentration to keep \'d2his line\'d3 open. She needed all the concentration for herself, mostly to show the guard-Stegs that they were wrong. They kept insisting that she was from a race of half-wits that would one day show itself. Allyson thought, \'d4Half-wits, hah!\'d5 The Ccloff left the room as her parents walked in. She looked up, wondering if she was going to have a stiff neck later, and saw softness in her father\'d5s eyes and a tear in her mother\'d5s.\par
     \'d2What is this, Father? Mother?\'d3\par
     \'d2Allyson, do you remember the day that you became aware of where you were?\'d3\par
     \'d2Sure, that was the day that I asked you why we were so differentia\par
     \'d2Yes, I told you it was because I underwent a new medical treatment. That isn\'d5t the truth.\'d3\par
     \'d2Are you going to tell me what is now?\'d3\par
     Allyson was watching her speech now, if she was not in front of her parents, she would have said \'d2gonna.\'d3\par
     I was afraid that this would become too difficult. \'d2Would you take the rest of this Merkim? I can\'d5t.\'d3 said her mother, the Queen.\par
     Allyson watched her mother lumber out of the room. Allyson wanted to try to help her mother, but her father told her to stay where she was.\par
     \'d2Alright Father, you\'d5ve got the floor.\'d3\par
     \'d2I want..your mother and I\'d5re going on a journey.\'d3\par
     \'d2That\'d5s interesting, to where?\'d3\par
     Allyson strained to catch every guttural syllable that her father said. She knew that she had to translate them into her language once she heard them. A message from Montel was coming in, but Allyson knew that it was just a sarcastic missive. \'d2You can\'d5t do it. Listen, translate and remember everything? You may as well give up now Allyson.\'d3 She sent her own message to Montel. It was not very nice, but it was heartfelt. \'d2Shut up, or we\'d5ll be feeding scraps of pink monkey to the little animals outside!\'d3 As this echoed in Montel\'d5s mind, he swallowed hard, causing his Adam\'d5s apple to swell. He visualized somebody cutting his head off and gutting him. He also pictured the oven and the little animals outside, as he ran all six of his hands over his pink belly. Allyson caught this thought and sent him a picture of himself being broiled over an open fire. Montel got the message and Allyson returned to her previous activities.\par
     \'d2You\'d5ll be going many light years from here, to Earth.\'d3\par
     \'d2Why are you sending me there?\'d3\par
     \'d2That is your home planet.\'d3\par
     \'d2This isn\'d5t?\'d3 I knew that, but wondered if you were going to tell me.\par
     \'d2Haven\'d5t you seen the differences between you and your mother?\'d3\par
     \'d2Of course I have.\'d3\par
     \'d2We were once Time Adventurers and found you there. You were abandoned in...\'d3\par
     \'d2Father, this seems too difficult for you, you can leave that out. I\'d5m going to Earth, fine. Do you know where?\'d3\par
     \'d2Well, Suffolk County in Long Island, New York is where I want you to begin. Just go to this town called Copiague, if there isn\'d5t anything that you like there, go elsewhere. We just want you to be happy.\'d3\par
     \'d2Can I take Montel?\'d3\par
     \'d2The monkey? We haven\'d5t discussed it, but I suppose so. You know that his species isn\'d5t found on Earth, and that you\'d5ll have to hide him?\'d3\par
     \'d2Hide him? Alright, that shouldn\'d5t be too difficult considering what I\'d5ve been told.\'d3\par
     \'d2What\'d5s that?\'d3\par
     \'d2Earthlings are half-wits.\'d3\par
     Her father smiled, \'d2Oh that myth. They do the best with what they have. Of course, you\'d5re superior to them, but don\'d5t let them know.\'d3\par
     Elated, Allyson said, \'d2I don\'d5t intend to.\'d3\par
     Merkim saw certain properties in his daughter that he identified as independent. Allyson was independent, but she was also many other things. Most women would have been proud of her, even slightly intimidated by Allyson\'d5s intelligence. She could be sarcastic to the point of causing pain, and had built her body enough to be competition for the current Ms. Universe. Two of Allyson I s other qualities were the ability to play upon a person I s vulnerabilities and her stubbornness.\par
     \'d2That\'d5s good, there\'d5s something else that I want you to do Allyson.\'d3\par
     The magic word. When her father called her Allyson, she knew that what he had to say was very important.\par
     \'d2What is it father?\'d3\par
     \'d2I want you to go into town and find a Time Adventurer. This man is going to be your bodyguard, so choose someone that you won\'d5t mind being around for long periods.\'d3\par
     \'d2Fine, anything else?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yes, be happy and know that your every action is being monitored.\'d3 Although we can do nothing if you are in trouble.\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     Allyson walked into town and found the Blast. The Blast was the building that the Time Adventurers congregated in. Each was so muscular, that she wondered why they needed each other when they were not on a mission. Walking inside, the women stared at Allyson until she pushed one out of her way and leaned against a pipe. She folded her arms as she looked at the different specimens. As Allyson tried to choose one for her bodyguard, she saw a shadow slowly cover her. Looking up, she saw an \'d4Adventurer give his friends a wink as he touched her arm.\par
     \'d2Hi, I\'d5m Gus.\'d3\par
     Without looking up, Allyson said, \'d2So?\'d3\par
     \'d2A feisty one, aren\'d5t you? What\'d5s your name?\'d3\par
     Her eyes still darted around, looking for the Time Adventurer who would be her bodyguard.\par
     \'d2Why haven\'d5t I seen you before Allyson?\'d3\par
     \'d2I don\'d5t come here very often, why should I?\'d3\par
     \'d2Why not? You look like any of the other ladies. Which planet were you on last?\'d3\par
     Allyson did not like the look in Gus\'d5 eyes and decided to be sarcastic.\par
     \'d2That must be one of those new discoveries near the edge of the galaxy.\'d3\par
     \'d2Do you know it?\'d3\par
     \'d2No, I guessed.\'d3\par
     Allyson\'d5s sarcasm became cold and biting, as she challenged Gus with, \'d2Oh, you didn\'d5t have the guts to sign up for that, huh? Move, I\'d5m trying to watch the sleds fly.\'d3\par
     She pointed to the oval-shaped arena that held the different warriors of a sort. This game was played by three-man squads on sleds that they moved by shifting their weights. From some minds, Allyson read that it was much like the roller derby played on Earth.\par
     Gus shot back with, \'d2I was the first to sign up for that! No ships have gone there yet. Who are you really?\'d3\par
     Standing very rigidly, she said, \'d2Allyson, as in Princess Allyson!\'d3\par
     Montel was monitoring everything through Allyson\'d5s mind and frowned when he thought \'d4She is in trouble now.\'d5 Gus grabbed Allyson\'d5s arm, she tried to push him away, but all of the building up of her body was to no avail. A shoulder pushed Gus onto the floor and returned his stare. Seeing this through her eyes, Montel applauded and Allyson looked to her left. Another man was standing there, smiling at Allyson. She wondered if he was going to be another Gus. While Gus could best a Mr. Universe when he was in his prime, this new man was a cut above that. This impressed Allyson, but only for a second. She looked into this new manes eyes and saw determination, and something that she could not identify. She called it flashes, and watched while Gus picked himself up and walked away. Turning to her left, Princess Allyson gazed for a few seconds.\par
  The-new man said, \'d2Sorry about him, we have our share of assholes in here. How about walking outside with me?\'d3\par
     \'d2If you\'d5ll tell me your name. I\'d5m Allyson.\'d3\par
     \'d2Brian. Let\'d5s go.\'d3\par
     Brian walked over to the pipe that he was leaning on before he noticed Allyson having trouble with Gus. He untied a leash and dragged a reptile with him that was over four and a half feet tall. As the door was opened, he felt the wind on his face as he caught Allyson\'d5s arm. She began staring when she saw the reptile. On Earth it would be an iguana, but she did,not know what to call one the size of a Great Dane.\par
     \'d2What was the hassle about before?\'d3\par
     \'d2I don\'d5t have a clue. Your friend began...\'d3\par
     \'d2Stop there, he\'d5s no friend of mine! I saved his life, but this is my friend..Oh I\'d5m sorry, meet Daggar. He\'d5s the last of a species, and has been with me since I was a boy and he was small enough to hang onto my arm. Gus almost stranded seven of us on a meteorite that we were exploring. In other words, he almost killed us. Daggar manipulated the pilot\'d5s mind and made him want to go back to the meteorite.\'d3\par
     \'d2Why do you need Daggar? You are so strong.\'d3\par
     \'d2Strong? Well, I\'d5m strong enough to get by. I\'d5ve been wondering who you are, I haven\'d5t seen you before.\'d3\par
     \'d2Gus said something like that. I\'d5m Allyson.\'d3\par
     \'d2I know that much..Wait, Allyson as in Princess Allyson?\'d3\par
     Allyson just smiled as her answer. Montel was thinking that this was no time for sarcasm.\par
     \'d2Sorry about how I spoke before, I didn\'d5t know.\'d3\par
     \'d2Brian, I\'d5m not wafer-thin gackle.\'d3\par
     \'d2So you\'d5re used to that kind of talk. I always wondered how they spoke in the Palace.\'d3\par
     Allyson laughed at this, because most of the time she was translating what they said into a language that she understood. The talk was very proper, but it came in at least five different languages.\par
     \'d2The way they speak in the Palace? I suppose I would be the best example. At least as far as our species goes. Sure, there are Stegs, Torps and Ccloffs, but you need at least a seven Geffed education to understand them. That is why I only spoke with my parents and Montel until I was seven.\'d3 \'d2Your parents, I\'d5ve seen their picture. They don\'d5t look at all like you.\'d3\par
     \'d2I know, that used to confuse me, but they explained it.\'d3\par
     The question left Brian\'d5s face as he said, \'d2Oh. Who did you say the other rascal was, Montell?\'d3\par
     \'d2Montel, you might meet him.\'d3 I only mentioned Montel once before, how did he remember him? I\'d5ll have to watch this one.\par
     \'d2I might? I don\'d5t think I\'d5ll like the stipulation here, what is it?\'d3\par
     \'d2I\'d5m going on a long journey, to Earth I gather. My parents want me to take a bodyguard with me. I don\'d5t think I want a baby-sitter type, just a companion. Do you want the job?\'d3\par
     \'d2Job? I travel all the time. Let\'d5s go to the Palace and work out the terms.\'d3\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     The two who were Gus\'d5 only friends, followed Brian and Allyson outside, but did not approach them immediately. They were afraid of Daggar, but soon maneuvered themselves into a better position.\par
     Brian heard \'d2Hey reptile-man!\'d3\par
     \'d2You mean me?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yeah, that was our friend you pushed in there!\'d3\par
     Brian knew the next few lines by heart. He left Daggar to guard Allyson, as he faced Gus\'d5 friends.\par
     \'d2So? Gus is still a gossit-head.\'d3\par
     \'d2Who said you weren\'d5t one?\'d3\par
     \'d2I know this scene, insults go back and forth until we start fighting. Is that what you want?\'d3\par
     \'d2No, we\'d5ll let you walk away.\'d3\par
     Brian knew this scene as well, and he trained his hearing on the vicinity that he had just walked away from. After taking two steps, he heard scraping and turned. Brian saw the two running at him, holding the equivalent of knives. He picked up a pipe-and stood still. The two came close enough for him to kick one in the stomach, as he knocked the other\'d5s knife away with the pipe. The man that he kicked threw his knife at Brian as they both ran at him. Allyson dropped Daggar is leash, trying to tell him to go to help Brian, but it was no go. He only obeyed Brian. Brian\'d5s eyes flashed purple, much the same as Daggar\'d5s, as the knife flew past his head. He kicked one away again, as his hands pierced the other\'d5s stomach and pulled out his intestines. Allyson was both impressed at his strength and frightened by his brutality. She saw Brian wrap the intestines around the neck of the man that he had kicked away, obviously strangling the victim. The other man stood up, allowing more of his intestines to begin falling out. Brian picked up the rest of the intestines, and tied them around this man\'d5s neck as he screamed. After seeing their eyes and tongues bulge almost out of their heads before they fell, Brian was fairly sure that the adversaries were dead. To be certain, he took their pulses, and wiped his hands on the second man\'d5s jacket and face. Brian turned to Allyson and called Daggar to him. Once he had the leash in his hand, he walked back and wiped his hand once more before he took Allyson\'d5s. They stepped over the bodies as they walked back to the Palace.\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     As they were walking into the Palace, a  Steg tried to stop Brian from following Allyson into the Throne  Room. He dropped into a fighting stance. The Steg did too, as  they stared at each other. Daggar saw that Brian was in a threatened situation and growled. Allyson saw lavender flashes in Daggar\'d5s eyes and pulled him aside, where she tied his leash to a heating duct. The lavender flashes began moving closer to a deeper hue of purple. Allyson had never seen this before, and did not know how to stop it. All that came to mind was telling Daggar that everything was alright and turning back to Brian. She saw daggers fly from each pair of eyes, and knew that this fight could go no further. A thug who would start fights with everyone he met was not the type of bodyguard that her parents had in mind-for her. Allyson scanned that in her father\'d5s mind. Scanning minds was another ability that she possessed. The fight attracted all of her attention. It would be alright with her if she knew that Brian was going to win this fight. She halted it temporarily by saying stop, but knew that it would not last. She scanned Brian\'d5s mind, and saw a picture of herself and Brian in a position that she had not even thought of before. Scanning a little deeper, Allyson heard Brian say, \'d2I like her, maybe something will come of this.\'d3 She planted a picture of them walking and holding hands in Brian\'d5s mind, expecting to see it rejected. When it was accepted, she had an idea.\par
     \'d2Brian, the room is down this corridor, leave that Steg alone and leave Daggar there.\'d3\par
     Allyson smiled, thinking that this would assuage his mind. He might even interpret her words to mean that she thought he would win that fight, so why bother?\par
     \'d2Okay Allyson, you\'d5re coming too, aren\'d5t you?\'d3\par
     \'d2Brian, while we\'d5re in the Palace, I think you should call me Princess Allyson.\'d3\par
     \'d2Okay, do I just stand here?\'d3\par
     \'d2No, sit down on one of those cushions.\'d3\par
     Brian barely had time to sit down, when two gigantic reptiles walked in. Brian pulled his gun from its home in his belt. The gun was along the lines of a laser gun, but it was shaped much differently. If one did not see the trigger, one would think that Brian had pulled out a seven inch pipe (one with a four inch circumference) with a switch on it. He saw that these reptiles were in the same family as Daggar. As a matter of fact, they were greatly exaggerated examples of his friend. He soon he recognized the King and Queen. Looking back and forth between the three, Brian was in a quandary and it showed on his face.\par
     Allyson saw his confusion and said, \'d2It\'d5s alright Brian, this is my Father and mother.\'d3\par
     \'d2But they\'d5re so..and you\'d5re so...\'d3\par
     \'d2I know there is a vast difference. They explained that to me.\'d3\par
     \'d2Well, you\'d5ll tell me about it sometime. Right now, I think that your parents and I should have a talk.\'d3\par
     \'d2I think I should stay to interpret.\'d3\par
     \'d2Is it necessary?\'d3\par
     \'d2Say hello and when you hear the answer, tell me.\'d3\par
     Looking into the wrinkled leather faces, Brian saw the warmth in her parents\'d5 eyes. His hello was met with a language that he did not understand and he nodded to Allyson.\par
     \'d2You want me to stay, don\'d5t you?\'d3\par
     \'d2I need you to.\'d3\par
     \'d2What did I tell you?\'d3\par
     \'d2Are you always like this?\'d3\par
     Allyson smiled and sat down.\par
     Facing the King, Brian said, \'d2Okay sir, what do you want me to do?\'d3\par
     \'d2Just see that our little girl is safe and never in danger.\'d3\par
     \'d2That sounds a little too easy, I\'d5ll do it. We\'d5re going to Earth?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yes, I think that she wants to take montel along.\'d3\par
     \'d2That\'d5s okay. It might even make this job interesting.\'d3\par
     \'d2If you mean dangerous, consider the different dangers that there are on Earth.\'d3\par
     \'d2Dangers? Well, I guess you would say that if you haven\'d5t been there. I blast anything that looks remotely dangerous, so there\'d5s nothing to worry about.\'d3\par
     Merkim was not about to explain being sent to Earth while he was a Time Adventurer. He smiled and said, \'d2Alright then, you\'d5ll take off in three days. Oh, I almost forgot to tell you that Allyson has a tracking grid built into her.\'d3\par
     \'d2In other words, you\'d5re gonna be monitoring her every minute.\'d3\par
     \'d2Not every minute, but you have the general idea.\'d3\par
     \'d2Okay, she\'d5ll be safe.\'d3\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     Walking to Allyson is room, the two tried to steal glances at each other, but when there was eye contact, they looked away. She knew that this was foolish, but had read Brian\'d5s mind and knew what behavior he wanted to see at any given minute.\par
     \'d2Alright Brian, sit down anywhere, I\'d5ll be right back.\'d3\par
     Brian sat on the bed as Allyson went to another room. She thought that she had a surprise for Brian, forgetting that Montel had been in town many times before. Allyson did not worry about Montel because \'d2He\'d5s just a monkey,it as her parents had said. Her thinking was, \'d4Who\'d5s going to want to hurt a little monkey?\'d5 At times she remembered him coming home without his tail, but that was one time and it was not as if he had sustained a mortal injury. Allyson opened a door and walked into a room that nobody bothered with. She walked directly to the closet and opened it.\par
     \'d2I\'d5m back, you can come out now.\'d3\par
     \'d2Did you find your bodyguard? Hah hah.\'d3\par
     Allyson telekinetically lifted Montel and tossed him across the room. \'d2Don\'d5t laugh at me. I know we both don\'d5t think I need him, but my parents want me to take someone along, and who knows.\'d3\par
     \'d2I know Allyson, you might really need him on Earth.\'d3\par
    \'d2I might need him? He\'d5s your bodyguard too.\'d3\par
     \'d2And you want me to meet him now.\'d3\par
     \'d2Well, is it a problem?\'d3\par
     \'d2Nah, I just don\'d5t think I need him.\'d3\par
     \'d2Montel, neither of us know if we\'d5re gonna, but if...\'d3\par
     \'d2Okay, which room is he in?\'d3\par
     \'d2Mine. \'d2\par
     \'d2You let him into your room? I wonder what he\'d5s stealing?\'d3\par
     The Princess I white hair flew as she shook her head and said, \'d2Cut that out, I don\'d5t think he\'d5s interested in stealing. I mean he\'d5s well dressed..for a Time Adventurer. Get that picture out of my mind! He wears more than three bands of fur, and how could he wear anything if it was hanging on a doorknob.\'d3\par
     \'d2Did you like the picture?\'d3\par
     Allyson did not have to answer, her blush did it for her. She worried that she would not be able to meet Brian\'d5s eyes. Montel loved getting her into embarrassing situations. He was not alone in this pursuit, she did the same to him. She could not see him blush through the pink fur, but he would lose the ability to speak and that to Allyson was priceless.\par
     Walking back into her room, she and Montel held hands. He squeezed hers when he saw Brian reach into his back pocket and pull out a book. Allyson stopped when she saw Brian reading some passage in the book.\par
     \'d2What are you doing Brian?\'d3\par
     \'d2Reading, it\'d5s allowed, isn\'d5t it?\'d3\par
     \'d2Reading? I used to do that too. Of course it is allowed.\'d3\par
     \'d2Why did you stop?\'d3\par
     \'d2I\'d5ve read every book in the Palace..the nation for that matter.\'d3\par
     \'d2No you haven\'d5t. I have friends who write, but that isn\'d5t allowed, unless they were writing something that the Government liked.\'d3\par
     \'d2Nobody ever told me that. Will you tell me your friends\'d5 names?\'d3\par
     Brian became angry as he said, \'d2Of course not! You\'d5re part of the Government.\'d3\par
     \'d2I just meant that if there\'d5s something new to read, I\'d5d like to see it.\'d3\par
     Allyson read that Brian would like her to speak a little better.\par
     His anger subsided as he said, \'d2Princess, these people have saved my life a few times . I\'d5m not gonna put theirs in danger.\'d3\par
     Smiling, Allyson said, \'d2I understand and admire that.\'d3\par
     \'d2So you\'d5re the bodyguard, huh?\'d3\par
     \'d2I guess so, and you are Montel?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yeah, is it a problem \'d4Adventurer?\'d3\par
     \'d2of course not.\'d3\par
     Allyson thought that Montel was baiting Brian a little too much, and sent a picture of what happened when her parents walked into the room. This time, the gun was going off and pieces of Montel\'d5s head were flying all around the room. When Montel saw this, he gulped and then smiled as he looked at Brian.\par
     \'d2You\'d5re not really gonna shoot me old buddy, old pal, are you?\'d3\par
     Brian\'d5-s face showed surprise. \'d2Huh? What made you think I was gonna shoot you?\'d3\par
     \'d2That\'d5s the picture I got.\'d3\par
     They both turned at this point.\par
     Picture? \'d2Allyson!\'d3\par
     \'d2Little me?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yeah you, you didn\'d5t tell me about the mind games that you play with montel.\'d3\par
     Montel just stared at her, while Brian saw her wink at him. It took all of a second for him to decipher this and look back at Montel. He saw that first he would have to break the stare between Montel and Allyson. He found that simple, tossing a cushion between them was distraction enough.\par
     \'d2Montel, I\'d5m not gonna shoot you.\'d3\par
     Montel started smiling again when he heard this.\par
     \'d2of course I might feed you to Daggar!\'d3\par
     At first, Montel was confused, but he scanned Brian\'d5s mind and found Daggar on the top. The smile faded and his six arms began shivering. Brian looked at Allyson, asking if he should tell Montel that this was just a joke. Allyson shook her head, not only answering Brian\'d5s question, but confirming his suspicion that these two read minds. Although it was disquieting to Brian, almost being killed was worse, much worse. Brian smiled and put an arm around Montel.\par
     \'d2Come on, that was a joke\par
     \'d2I knew that, I just wanted you to think I was af..afraid.\'d3\par
     \'d2I also think you\'d5ll be a little too tough for Daggar. Give me your arm. to\par
     \'d2Which one?\'d3\par
     \'d2Anyone will do. Yeah, just like I thought, too much gristle.\'d3\par
     As Montel drew his arm back, he extended the other five with his hands out. Brian simply reached for one and shook it. One thing that Montel did not expect was for Brian to begin squeezing. When Brian saw Montel I s eyelids and mouth fly as wide open as possible, he stopped squeezing and saw Allyson trying to pry his hand open. He\'d5d had enough games and just opened his hand. Montel pulled his hand back and began blowing on it, but Brian knew that only a little time would make it stop hurting.\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     Allyson saw Brian walk down the hall and knew that Stegs and Ccloffs would try to stop him. She sent messages to every mind in the vicinity not to bother Brian, that he was alright. Allyson saw a Ccloff obviously receive the message and look around wildly, trying to determine where the message came from. Their eyes met, but Allyson just stood there. Reading the Ccloff\'d5s mind, she saw Sweet little Allyson manipulating my mind? It must be someone else. It is probably that little monkey that she is always playing with. She turned away and smiled, as she walked after Brian. Catching up to him was not easy for Allyson because all of her training had not built up her legs sufficiently. Her white hair swung from side to side as she ran and was almost at his shoulder. Tapping him, Brian spun around and dropped into a crouch. This surprised and frightened Allyson. Reading Brian\'d5s mind, she saw two thought processes, one paranoid and the other pragmatic. So this is why she really brought me to the Palace, it\'d5s either a test or just a grand plan to kill me. Don\'d5t be so stupid, look around you before you jump to any conclusions. As their eyes met, Brian did not smile, as she expected.\par
     \'d2Hey Adventurer!\'d3\par
     Brian snapped back to reality when he heard her. He looked down and saw that his gun was in his hand. He tucked the gun back into his belt and stood correctly.\par
     \'d2Sorry Allyson, I don\'d5t know what I was thinking.\'d3\par
     \'d2I do, and I don\'d5t like it. Do you really think that\par
I would bring you here to kill you? If that was what I wanted,\par
somebody would have come into the Blast and killed you there and then.\'d3\par
     Brian admired the candor that he found, he also liked seeing Allyson brush the few hairs out of her cleavage and back over her shoulder.\par
     \'d2Thanks for telling me that, I\'d5ll sleep much better tonight, knowing that somebody might try to kill me.\'d3\par
     \'d2That isn\'d5t going to happen. I\'d5ve read that you wanted dinner now, come with me.\'d3\par
He was very impressed by the way that Allyson was speaking\par
now and she saw him smile. He remembered where he left Daggar and was going to get him first.\par
     \'d2Allyson, Daggar and I eat together. We don\'d5t eat the same food, in that I give him what I don\'d5t want.\'d3\par
     \'d2Oh, I gather that he has a much bigger selection of food?\'d3\par
     \'d2No, it truthfully is fairly small, amounting to table scraps and other pieces that I wouldn\'d5t bother with. We have to go to the doorway to collect Daggar. \'d3\par
     \'d2I think it would be a better idea if I led the way, let\'d5s go. if\par
     After untying Daggar\'d5s leash from the door, Brian and Allyson began walking to the kitchen. In a minute or less, they heard a growl from Daggar and saw him begin turning around. As the flashes were beginning in his eyes, Brian put his hand in front of the reptile\'d5s face and told him that it was alright. Allyson saw Montel at the end of the hall, walking as fast as he could, but he stopped and stood very still when he saw the flashes.\par
     \'d2Montel, it\'d5s alright, come on.\'d3\par
     \'d2Are you sure Allyson? I mean that reptile looks hungry and I\'d5m only two swallows.\'d3\par
     \'d2I\'d5m sure. Don\'d5t you know that we can destroy a primitive mind like his?\'d3\par
     \'d2I knew that!\'d3\par
     \'d2Walk here and stand next to me, sandwich Brian and myself between you and Daggar. Don\'d5t you feel safe now?\'d3\par
     \'d2From it, yeah, but he can throw you out of the way at anytime and grab me.\'d3\par
     \'d2Listen you tailless...\'d3\par
     \'d2Hey! That\'d5s fighting dirty!\'d3\par
     \'d2Sorry furball, do you want to see pictures of intestines around a pink neck instead? Or try this one.\'d3\par
     The picture was Daggar chewing, while one of Montel\'d5s arms dangled from its mouth, the arm that had the bracelet on it.\par
     \'d2Princess, are you that angry? On another note, aren\'d5t we la de dah? I heard you talking before, you never said \'d4going to\'d5 before. I wonder what else you\'d5re gonna do for him.\'d3\par
     Allyson knew that Montel was baiting her, but her independent streak would not disregard this.\par
     \'d2Montel, I don\'d5t appreciate you listening in on our conversation. What else am I going to do for him? If I knew what he wanted, I\'d5d do it.\'d3\par
     \'d2As an Eco-Sweeper told me, \'d4You\'d5ve got it bad.\'d5 Remember that time I told you about when I was in town?\'d3\par
     \'d2Sure, the picture is etched into your mind. Do you really think that he wants me to do that? She certainly looks uncomfortable.\'d3\par
     Allyson realized that she had been neglecting her guest and looked back at him. She saw him smile, and interpreted it to mean that he was glad to be going to dinner. She was slightly concerned that his mind was able to receive and interpret the conversation between Montel and herself, and that it had offended him. He was merely standing up after playing with Daggar, before and had \'d2heard\'d3 nothing. Allyson took his arm and led him to the kitchen. Once there, she began to take different foods out of the shelves. Brian had seen these foods in the windows of restaurants, but never expected to have this opportunity. He piled all of the food that he saw onto a plate and ate much too quickly.\par
     \'d2Brian slow down, there isn\'d5t a time limit on how fast or slow we can eat.\'d3\par
     \'d2I\'d5m sorry, I usually have to eat fast so nobody steals the food.\'d3\par
     \'d2Steal your food, who can?\'d3\par
     \'d2Anybody can try, knocking it over in the process.\'d3\par
     \'d2Oh, I\'d5ve been told that that is bad for your stomach. You don\'d5t have to worry about that here.\'d3\par
     Allyson and Brian were quietly eating, when a picture came into her mind. Brian worried as he saw Allyson cover her mouth and run to the bathroom. He began staring at the wall, his way of thinking, when he looked at Montel. Montel could not hold back any longer and started laughing. Brian stood up and pointed at the little monkey.\par
     \'d2Daggar, food!\'d3\par
     Now Montel was frightened and puzzled. Puzzled because he did not think the reptile was able to hear. He backed into a corner and was terrified when he saw the purple flashes in Daggar\'d5s eyes. The only way Montel could think of to save himself was to send an image into Daggar\'d5s mind. At first he wondered what image to use, but the answer was right in front of him. He sent an image of himself pulling Daggar\'d5s eyes out. Frightening as it might be to some, Daggar was trained for combat and this was a clear challenge to him. He began growling as he stood, just as he began to walk toward Montel, a hand covered his face.\par
     As Allyson returned, she shouted, \'d2Brian, I\'d5ll thank you to keep a tighter reign on your reptile!\'d3\par
     \'d2I will. If you keep better control of your monkey.\'d3\par
     \'d2The truth comes out now, does it? Montel isn\'d5t my monkey, he has his own mind.\'d3\par
     \'d2Okay then, as long as he knows not to play little games in the future.\'d3\par
     Allyson stared at Montel and saw him nod profusely.\par
     \'d2He does Brian. Let\'d5s go.\'d3\par
     \'d2Where are we going this time?\'d3\par
     \'d2Down the corridor to my room, we\'d5ll have to sleep soon.\'d3\par
     \'d2I don\'d5t know, are you sure I shouldn\'d5t just wait outside?\'d3\par
     \'d2I\'d5m sure, after all, you are my guest. Would you stop looking around? Nobody is going to bother you.\'d3\par
     Muttering \'d2Typical man.\'d3 Allyson opened her door.\par
     \'d2Okay, just one question. What do you expect of me?\'d3\par
     \'d2I don\'d5t know, nothing I guess. This is the first time I\'d5ve had somebody in my room.\'d3\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     The next few days were fairly uneventful. Brian\'d5s eyes opened on the morning that they were to be prepared for their travel, and he sat up. He had three concerns at this time. First, was deciding whether to take Daggar to Earth. Although he had been there before, a giant reptile might be a hindrance to their blending in with everyone else. Brian noticed the strange resemblance between Daggar and Allyson\'d5s parents. He wondered if he could leave Daggar with them. His next thought was, of the procedure that prepared one for traveling at more than the speed of light. Brian was very familiar with this and did not mind it. He did not like the clear plastic bodycast that one was put into. His main complaint was the mask and the lens protectors that were put over the eyes. Brian thought that Allyson\'d5s complaint would be different. He thought that she would mind leaving her clothes on a hook as she climbed into the \'d4cast. Brian\'d5s third concern was, how were they going to arrange getting dressed again once the time limit was reached and their lids were lifted. Allyson awakened with a completely different mind set. She was anticipating this trip and could not wait to see what was involved in it.\par
     When they were out of bed and dressed, they met in the dining hall and waited for Merkim and Fallet to walk in. When Allyson\'d5s parents arrived and were seated, Allyson and Brian sat down. Allyson saw a Torp glaring at her from the corner of the room. She did not understand the reason at first, and it did not help that all Torps looked the same. Allyson sent a message to Montel, who scrambled to the dining hall and sat between Brian and Allyson. Montel saw the Torp and asked Allyson what was going on. When her answer was along the lines of \'d2Who knows?\'d3, he planted a picture in the Torp\'d5s mind. The picture was a snake-beast covered with staples coiling itself around the Torp. Torps lived in mortal danger of the snake-beasts. Allyson would have done better if she merely read the last few thoughts that the Torp had. Montel read the Torp\'d5s mind and saw the picture. He tapped Allyson\'d5s arm and made his \'d2Montel sound.\'d3 The Montel sound was a high giggle ending in a long, sustained note that he sent by curving his lips. Allyson knew that she would only hear this when Montel approved of something. She also recognized the Torp and knew why it was glaring at her. This was the Torp that took her in and gave her her bath every morning. Allyson knew that she had to break away from being treated as wafer-thin gackle, and this act was the beginning.\par
     \'d2Brian, how was sleeping in the Palace?\'d3\par
     \'d2It\'d5s great. No squiggle-tails or other animals that you haven\'d5t seen to beware of.\'d3\par
     \'d2Why do I see flashes in your eyes?\'d3\par
     \'d2I was.just thinking. If we are gonna live on Earth, we can\'d5t have Daggar with us, so I was wondering...I\'d5 \'d2Yes?\'d3\par
     \'d2This is more a question for your parents.\'d3\par
     \'d2Then ask them.\'d3\par
     Brian stared at the Princess, who understood once she read his,mind. She nodded to him as she thought, \'d4Doesn\'d5t he know that I will translate for him?\'d5\par
     \'d2Your majesties, would you take care of Daggar while we\'d5re gone?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yes Brian. He\'d5ll be living in Allyson\'d5s room. I don\'d5t know if you are returning.\'d3\par
     As before, Brian needed Allyson to interpret.\par
     \'d2I heard the not returning part and don\'d5t understand it, but it\'d5s okay if Allyson thinks so.\'d3\par
     \'d2Father, I don\'d5t understand it either and what\'d5s this bit about Daggar living in my room?\'d3\par
     \'d2You might want to stay on Earth once you\'d5ve gotten to know it. Allyson, have you noticed the resemblance between Daggar and your mother and I? Your room is the second best room here, so that\'d5s where he\'d5ll stay.\'d3\par
     \'d2Well, he is the last of his line. Alright father, but I think we\'d5ll be back.\'d3\par
     \'d2If that makes you happy. After breakfast, go to the launch pad and be prepared for time travel..and don\'d5t forget montel.\'d3\par
     Allyson knew that she could not forget Montel, he would not let her. Once breakfast was over, Brian handed Daggar\'d5s leash to the King and Queen as Allyson grabbed Montel\'d5s hand. This was slightly difficult because he extended three arms to her. She was in no mood for games and grabbed the top arm. Brian stared into Daggar\'d5s eyes and a purple beam connected the two sets of eyes. It was as if they were communicating thoughts, but Allyson thought, \'d4No, my imagination is running away.\'d5 As Brian stared, he stroked Daggar\'d5s side and his hand moved up to the mouth, opening it. Allyson saw teeth and an almost violet tongue. Brian rested his arm on the teeth, but Daggar would not bite him. Not knowing this, Allyson worried and took a mental picture at the same time. She planned to insert this picture into Brian\'d5s mind at times in the future.\par
                                                *            *            *\par
     Brian led Allyson to the too familiar launch pad. He thought that the sight of all the machinery frightened her, so he squeezed her hand a little more tightly. Allyson did not understand why Brian was squeezing her hand and thought, \'d4Typical man\'d5 again. Montel read her thoughts and read Brian\'d5s. He did not agree that Allyson was frightened by the launch pad and needed reassuring, but he thought, \'d4Okay.\'d5 Montel did not tell Allyson this because not doing so could lead to a fight between Brian and the Princess.\par
     \'d2Brian, why were you squeezing my hand?\'d3\par
     \'d2I thought you were afraid and I was trying to tell you not to be.\'d3,\par
     \'d2I know that there\'d5s no reason to be afraid. Who do you think built this?\'d3\par
     \'d2Yes Brian, hired by?\'d3\par
     \'d2Engineers higher than they were? I really don\'d5t know.\'d3\par
     \'d2This was one of my father\'d5s pet projects, he hired the engineers. I played here when I was younger.\'d3\par
     \'d2Good, then you\'d5re not afraid. Have you ever been in a light-craft?\'d3\par
     \'d2No, they wouldn\'d5t let me in them. I didn\'d5t understand it then or now, is there some secret?\'d3\par
     \'d2Secret, no. To let you in there, they would have to depressurize the craft first. It takes somebody trained in light travel dynamics to do that and I think it I s pretty expensive too. if\par
     \'d2Oh really? Give me seven hours and I wager I can perform that operation.\'d3\par
     Brian threw his head back and laughed, a laugh that seemed to reverberate through his entire body.\par
     \'d2You think so, do you Allyson?\'d3\par
     \'d2It only took me three hours to learn the operation that I performed on Montel.\'d3\par
     \'d2What kind of operation was that? Dressing him in one of your old dresses?\'d3\par
     Allyson thought, \'d4So that is what he is really like,\'d5 as she stared at Brian and wished that she exhibited flashes at these times. Knowing that there would be no flashes, she planted an image in his mind. The image was Brian with intestines around his neck. A second later, he stared at her.\par
     \'d2Listen Princess, it\'d5s not fair to do that, since I can\'d5t.\'d3\par
     Hearing Brian\'d5s complaint, Allyson\'d5s face was the picture of innocence. \'d2Do what?\'d3\par
     \'d2Plant a picture in my mind.\'d3\par
     \'d2How do you know that I did that\'d5.\'d3\par
     As he spoke, a Montel sound was made, but Brian did not even blink. \'d2Montel told me.\'d3\par
     Looking into his eyes and pointing at him, Allyson began her \'d2You tailless little furball...\'d3 tirade, until Brian held a hand up and said, \'d2Stop!\'d3\par
     Brian led Allyson up the stairs, to the platform. He did not sense fear anymore and wondered why. They were approaching what he was afraid of. That was the bodycast. on the surface it seemed harmless, but the danger came if the inhabitant touched the sides while in it. The simple answer would seem to have been concentrating on not moving, but involuntary movements were unavoidable. The only answer was to hope that the electrical field was not disturbed during an involuntary movement.\par
     Once on the platform, Brian walked into what could best be described as a shed and met some old buddies. They asked what his destination was, and began looking up the amount of time that it took to reach Earth. Allyson did not understand why they were weighing her. Brian guessed about this and told her that one\'d5s weight determined the amount of Cryogen that was slowly put into the system. The developer died before he told anybody what the real name of the serum was. That honor fell to Brian\'d5s grandmother because she tested the serum when she traveled to Earth. On her return, she told of the cryogenic experiments that she had seen. Thus the name sprang to mind. When one of Brian\'d5s friends asked Allyson to take her clothes off, he was met with a cold stare. Soon he was seen holding the sides of his head as he ran to the edge of the platform and fell off. Montel began making his sound again which confirmed what Brian was thinking.\par
     Brian explained, \'d2Princess, he wanted you to take your clothes off because that is how you are put into the plastic bodycasts.\'d3\par
     \'d2This is new to you, huh?\'d3 Would it help if I went first?\'d3\par
     \'d2I don\'d5t know, perhaps.\'d3\par
     \'d2Okay, just don\'d5t kill anymore of my friends.\'d3\par
     Allyson looked away as Brian was prepared for the journey. Montel watched the entire operation and sent an image of it into Allyson\'d5s mind. She began to think, \'d4This isn\'d5t so bad, I can do it. I just hope they don\'d5t tell Brian about my plastic surgery.\'d5 When Montel\'d5s turn came, he was slightly reluctant. Montel\'d5s thinking was, \'d4I should be afraid, they\'d5ve never administered this..operation on someone like me.\'d5\par
     After awhile, Montel was prepared for the journey and the switch was flipped, creating an invisibility shield. This \'d4shield also enabled the craft to penetrate radar or any other tracking system. The rockets soon fired and the craft disappeared into the galaxy.\par

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