The Krysus Effect Part One
By Steven Koutz
SPOILER ALERT: This tale takes place after the events of book 3 The Children of Home and the short story The Rise of Krysus After the Fall.
It had been only a matter of ten rotations since a small Teon star shaped shuttle carried Krysus and the Teon named Kotch beyond the barrier of the Great Curtain and into unexplored space wilderness. Kotch was a standard Teon, humanoid build and donned heavy muscular armor. The Teon exception to humans was their skeletal hands and humanoid exposed skull. Krysus was a beautiful, curvy, and long-blonde haired human woman. Her eyes had been ripped out by her target of revenge, Rico. They had been replaced with ocular implants that were solid blue in color and had the darkest blue tone ever seen.
They had been monitoring satellites and communications in the region to learn any information on this unknown area of space. The starship dubbed; The Shining Sea had still not entered this area after yet another delay. The only known members of Krysus and Kotch’s side of the Great Curtain have been former Prince Nissus from the planet Yanve and Rico from the main planet of Home. Rico was the target of Krysus. He had ripped her eyes out after her secret capture. Her old green eyes had the power to control minds and create alternate realities. Rico’s Honsho lover, Derth friend, and Nissus’ human mother had been stranded in one of those realities. Rico had taken her eyes in the belief that they could be a power source to get to the reality his companions were stranded in. He had come beyond the Great Curtain barrier in hopes of finding a method to use those eyes he had stolen. Nissus was of course human but he was not of concern to Krysus. Her vengeance was centered solely on the humanoid, Rico. He had a hard shell-like skin, big black eyes, and the forehead formation that stretched back to the center and top of his head. That was his Luth Bik side gained from his father. Where Luth Bik skin was gray, Rico’s human side from his mother was displayed with a Caucasian flesh tone. The other difference from the Luth Bik side of his mixed race was instead of the two hearts, a Luth Bik had, Rico had one slightly larger than a standard human heart.
Krysus had learned a great deal in such a short time of monitoring and observation. She was also well aware that finding Rico was more than a longshot. He had been here already a full cycle in time. In Earth terms, that was a year. Despite that fact, her vengeance was her determination and it was undeterred. The shuttle had reached a commerce planet called Origawry (Ore-ig-awry).
She landed the shuttle slightly away from the heavily populated commerce city. As she and Kotch entered, they had noticed the majority of the purple skin toned natives known as Origaans. There were also many various races unknown from the other side of the Great Curtain. Most were bipedal humanoid in form but a few were quadrupeds with reptilian top halves. Krysus assigned Kotch to blend in and conduct a scouting report. She headed to a stellar cartography station where she could gain an even greater knowledge of this region. She researched deeply into known planet cultures and abilities. She needed to find something that she could see as an opportunity in Rico’s quest. He would be looking desperately for anything that could help him find some sort of access to alternate realities and the ability to trigger the power source of her former eyes. The fact that she knew what Rico wanted was her advantage in finding his destinations.
Time had passed by Krysus without realization that the end of the rotation had come. She had found a few target worlds which focused on scientific studies of space and time. One region of space though had drawn her attention, a region called the Slippage. It was a wild space region with multiple nebulas that had reports of time and optic distortion. It was quite distant but there were many planetary options that Krysus could consider that Rico would have stopped at. These reports of time and optic distortion were growing in more numbers very recently. Perhaps the Slippage had a season of heavy activity. She could feel the Slippage was her best choice. It was a clear destination that Rico would work toward. The advantage was again granted to Krysus because she could bypass other options that Rico would not. She had a direct path. She commed Kotch. He reported that he had obtained a great deal of knowledge of how many planets in the region conducted commerce and currencies. Krysus replied that they were done here and she wanted to leave immediately. Kotch confirmed that the shuttle would be ready.
It had taken thirteen rotations even in hyperspace to get to the Slippage region. Krysus engaged scans on multiple nebulas. Many were showing short fluctuations. Two of them showed longer fluctuations and those were the two that caught the new eyes of Krysus. She then accessed the data she had on the starship, Dyam’s Quest, the Unstab freighter last recorded as Rico’s ship. She initiated a long-range scan for the Unstab freighter. With it being a unique starship to this region of space, it was expected to light up like a beacon. They waited another three rotations in time before a freighter matching the schematic design of the freighter she desired lit up the screens. It was on a slow approach and once in range, Krysus confirmed the call sign as Dyam’s Quest. Her prey had arrived.
Aboard the Unstab freighter, Rico had taken the pilot controls from auto pilot. The young former prince now going by the name of just Nissus also moved into the co-pilot seat. He had wavy brown hair and a muscular build. Nissus noted, “We might be meeting another dead end coming back here.” Rico replied, “We did not have the breacher device installed on our last attempt.” Nissus continued, “This will be our fourth slip attempt and the price on our head for killing off enemies of Lumber Tell is already quite high. I don’t think we can afford to knock off anymore if this don’t work and we have to go crawling back to him.” Rico bolstered a small chuckle. He reminded Nissus that the breacher device was from a much more credible source than Lumber Tell. He stated with confidence, “This will work and we can all head home.” Nissus started to bring the breacher device online. He then paused and reported a Teon Shuttle was on approach. Rico questioned, “Teon?” As the shuttle approached, a hail was initiated. Rico opened the hail which was had static filled visuals. He asked, “This is Rico of Dyam’s Quest. It is a bit strange to see a Teon shuttle this deep in space. Are you with the Shining Sea? Has that vessel finally made it to this side of the Great Curtain?” The reply was silent. Nissus stated that the shuttle was arming weapons. He then added that the weapons were reading a bit stronger than normal shuttle lasers. Rico again asked for a reply that went unanswered. He then stated, “You hailed us! Discharge your weapons and reveal your identity or I will engage!” Slowly the static video cleared. Both Rico and Nissus were caught by surprise. Behind the Teon pilot stood Krysus with obvious eye implants.
Krysus stated, “At last I see you again Rico!” The smile she displayed was sinister and she called for Kotch to attack. The shuttle fired heavy lasers at Dyam’s Quest. The freighter took an initial but minimal hit. Nissus raised shields. Rico retaliated with a larger and heavier laser spread. The Teon star shaped shuttle successfully maneuvered with twists and spins to also take minimal hits. The two small starships began to both exchange fire and execute evasive maneuvers. The speed of the maneuvers increased as Rico screamed to Nissus, “We will deal with her later! We need to go now! Activate the breacher!” The Teon Shuttle was now firing forward as it entered pursuit mode. Rico had set Dyam’s Quest on a course toward the Timp Nebula. He set an electric current into the clear tube that held the special eyes of Krysus and they began to glow a bright jade green. The shuttle was firing as it pursued but its blasts that did hit, seemed to pass right through the Unstab freighter due the breacher device that was causing Dyam’s Quest to phase in and out. Krysus called for a cease fire and instructed Kotch to enter the phasing trail just behind Dyam’s Quest. Both ships were now phasing in sync as they entered the nebula and seemingly vanished.
THE END OF PART ONE: PART TWO NEXT MONTH