The Travelers of Terra

Chapter 1

New Beginnings

Dr. Cain will begin: “I have to thank you kids…you saved my life back there. I don’t know how…but you did. When those rats rushed toward me, I saw my life flash before my eyes. I’m honestly not totally sure what’s going on here, but considering the circumstances we’re in, I think it best that I tell you everything I know. First of all, Dr. Walters, as you may have noticed, is not only a friend and colleague…(pregnant pause)...she’s my ex-wife. We met in graduate school in a Cultural Anthropology seminar. Long story short, we got married 5 years later, and had dreams of travelling the world, going on fantastic adventures, and seeing every corner of the globe. The truth is, we never saw every corner, because she was obsessed with the jungle…(he pauses, and puts his hand deep into his pocket, and pulls out what appears to be a silver bangle)...and this is why.”

Dassarius – Before any of us rest, I think we need to talk about just happened. I mean, we go and touch those glowing circles and suddenly we are transformed!!!? WTF?! We have these insane powers.! I can travel around becoming invisible. You guys suddenly have insane strength and a sense of crazy wisdom (especially you Asura). And isn’t it so weird that we all have abilities and characteristics that are similar to when we were normal??? Like, me for example, I was always the one in back of the room..trying every which way to hide from my work, my classes, my professors in the hall..and now I have this ability to literally disappear with a few short steps. And you guys know I was an Earth Science Major, and now I have this uncanny knowledge of the natural world. I was just able to tell that that water was safe for us to drink by looking at it! I was able to tell that those rock formations down the hall…ya know those 4 stalactite pillars were stable. Its like I have all the experience any geologist could ever want, and I only have taken a few classes so far! But these physical changes are weird. I got these pointy ears, and am totally lean and ripped! And you Asura. You have this ability to lead us and have all these tactics planned. You were able to figure out which way to go next, and set up an amazing battle plan to fight off those rats… Although, lets be honest, it was me in the end who cleaned up that crap while you two were whimpering on the floor….HA! And what was with this healing ability? I know you have always had an interest in medicine and are thinking about Med school, and now suddenly you were able to bring us back from near death with just a few words! What do you guys think? And this nut obsessed with the jungle? What is her deal?”

Asura – This situation is certainly disconcerting, our physical and mental changes most of all. As you know I am always very cool and collected. When we first saw those giant insects and spiders, even though I should have been freaking out at their unnatural size, my first thoughts were how to coordinate ourselves to take them out quickly. Even stranger were some surges of emotion that I felt during the battle. There were times in the thick of the fights were I had an overwhelming sense of fury, like the fires of the deepest hell, rise up inside of me. While there are so many questions about what has just happened that it is completely overwhelming, we need to stay focused on the biggest issues at hand: how do we change back and get back home. Dr. Cain, it would be most helpful if you could tell us everything you know, starting with that silver bracelet.”

In his croaky, professory voice, Dr. Cain responds: “You both raise some very interesting points. I too am quite surprised at the…changes (and he leans over with an eyebrow raised to look behind Asura and notices her new tail and horns)...that you’ve all experienced, i have not seen or heard of anything like what has happened to you all…but i must say, you look like you all stepped out of some kind of dungeons and dragons game! As for this bracelet, if you could believe it, this is even more of a mystery. Syl…ehem…i mean Dr. Walters, entrusted me with this many many years ago…this really is what started her obsession with the jungle. (Sigh) According to what she tells me, this bangle was passed down in her family for many generations…and we’re talking about many generations of explorers, scientists, archaeologists… The story of how her family came into possession of it is a little vague, but we do know that it was found deep in this jungle, embedded in a rock face on top of tall rock formation. (To illustrate, he holds up his hand, palm flat, and draws a circle in his palm with his finger with his other hand). Wanting to know as much about it as possible, her family conducted a molecular analysis of the material, and learned that its composition is unlike any known metal we have here on earth. She gave it to me for safe keeping when she left to explore the jungle. She was afraid that if she didn’t survive her expedition, the bracelet would be lost again. And now I’m afraid the only viable direction is to press onward…the entrance is caved in, and i’m afraid that if we disturb the walls around it, we’ll only do more damage.” (He glances ominously at the two large stone slabs that appear to be doors on the north and south sides of this room)

Yolanda sat quietly listening to the others talk about this experience. They were all scared. She, on the hand, was excited. Instead of sitting in Dr. Liebowitcz’s class she was in an unknown place with amazing powers. She understood the others’ anxiety, but she was excited to see what tomorrow would bring. Would be able to fly? Would she be able to wield two war picks? Would she grow a tail?

Dr. C. was showing them all a silver bracelet. Yolanda heard something about keeping it safe and pressing onward. That excited her!

“Let’s press on after a good night rest. Some sleep should calm your…um..our nerves.” Yolanda smiled. She knew tomorrow would bring more extraordinary things.



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