Tss’ckckck paused at the door to the massive central socialization area, added to the base specifically with humans in mind and felt his chelicerae twitch in annoyance. Two human voices came from the central couches in smooth rumbling tones. There was a burst of laughter, and the sounds subsided into eager, if angry conversational tones again. Tss’ckckck rubbed his head with his best gripping paw and decided against confronting the humans directly. Instead he turned and headed up the old, comfortably Trisk sized corridor to the central office. Reaching the main door he pushed aside the privacymembrane and stalked in towards the smooth old officer at the desk.
“Commander,” he said in respectful tones.
Commander Chk’k was one of the most senior serving Rangers. His head was nearly smooth from loss of sensory hairs, but his eyes still sparkled with light and his chelicerae still twitched with attention. He angled his body to greet Tss’ckckck and waved a talonless paw.
“Welcome Horticulturalist!” He called out. “What brings you to my office at this time of the solar cycle? Are the night midges giving the crops troubles again.”
“No more than usual,” Tss’ckckck said with a dismissive wave after the polite six seconds. “No, I had a question about the humans.”
“And what is your question?” Commander Chk’k asked.
“Are they not diurnal?” Tss’ckckck asked, letting his legs stiffen in a subtle show of annoyance.
Commander Chk’k’s chelicerae trembled with ill concealed amusement as he shifted his datapad in front of him.
“They are,” he agreed, “for the most part.”
Tss’ckckck got the distinct feeling that he was sorting dust by sized here but went on determinedly.
“Is it not dangerous for them to remain awake and functional this late into the night cycle?” he asked.
Commander Chk’k flexed his paws in a gesture of gentle confirmation and keep his primary eyes focused on Tss’ckckck. The younger ranger girded his joints for the final question.
“Then why have you not ordered Ranger Smith and Ranger Dodge to their hammocks for the night?” Tss’ckckck asked.
Commander Chk’k gave an amused chuckle and gently shifted his datapad on the desk in front of him. Clearly he was gathering his thoughts for a detailed reply and Tss’ckckck felt a gratified glow in his abdomen. He stretched out his stepping paws in a show of comfort and patience.
“You are aware that these two humans in particular have had trouble bonding?” the old commander asked.
Tss’ckckck flexed his own paws in acknowledgment.
“They have not been hostile to each other,” Commander Chk’k said in slow musing tones, “but they have not exchanged a single word outside of purely formal communication since Ranger Dodge arrived.”
There was a long and meaningful pause.
“Until tonight at the end of the recreation shift,” Commander Chk’k finished.
The commander pulled in his paws and titled his body to the side expectantly. Tss’ckckck flexed one paw in conditional understanding.
“They were,” he hesitated as he formed the words, “they seemed agitated, not particularly amicable in their conversation.”
Commander Chk’k heaved a sigh and flexed his paws again as he pulled up some notes.
“The point of common interest they have found,” he said in amused tones. “Is an identical web of rage they share for how a certain fictional story, presented in animation, I believe they call the style? Ended a human generation and a half ago.”
Far, far longer than the socially require six seconds of thought dragged out between them as Tss’ckckck worked that into his gut. Finally he drew a deep breath into his lung.
“They are, bonding, is the human term correct?” he asked.
Commander Chk’k flexed his paws again.
“They are enjoying…” he paused, “enjoying their mutual rage?”
Commander Chk’k positively beamed at him.
“You are learning much about human reactions!” he said.
“They should probably not be disturbed,” Tss’ckckck concluded.
“No,” Commander Chk’k said as a duet of shouting began to vibrate the base.
“I think,” Tss’ckckck said slowly. “The field mites require a few more hours of observation.”
Commander Chk’k simply turned his attention back to his reports.
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What does it mean when your human friend says “Watch This?”? Why does this simple phrase seem to terrify any alien that has first appendage experience with humans? #HFY #HumansAreWeird #HumansAreSpaceOrcs #EarthIsADeathWorld #EarthIsSpaceAustralia
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