Chapter 29 Land Worms
"What do you mean, they're all clones?" asked Dustin confused.
Walter glanced up at him, after helping Trey sit up, and said, "We can't have kids normally anymore. Something about inbreeding. I don't remember it all at the moment, but everyone on our station is born using clone technology."
"These two are brothers, and she's their sister. I wonder if everyone on that station of theirs is related?" murmured Granny, checking out her claws and digging something out from under one.
"I think so," answered Walter, sitting down heavily.
Trey was still breathing heavily and staring around him wildly. It looked like he still wasn't with it. Dustin wondered if he had some kind of brain damage from being dead so long.
A crash in the distance had Dustin and Granny on their feet.
"Damn! I was hoping we would have a little bit longer for the poor humans to recover. Oh, well, better get them on their feet. Unless you want to deal with the locals?" Granny looked Dustin up and down, then raised an eyebrow.
"They might have a ship?" he suggested.
"Hardly likely. Planet like this, our best chance is getting to those mountains. That's where we're likely to find a base of any kind. The locals here, are rather dimwitted."
"Granny, what lives on this planet?" asked Walter, trying to get Trey to his feet. The noise seemed to have him panicking.
"My best guess would be giant land worms, and nomadic sand men. Though, I could be wrong."
A memory popped up in Dustin's head and he looked at her.
"Is this the planet where you brought us, looking for sandworm teeth for an idea I had once?"
"I believe so."
"Ah, crap. Those land worms can only be killed from the inside."
Dustin hung his head. Walter and Trey were in no position to walk any further. They needed rest, and Sherry still hadn't woken up. He was going to have to fight whatever was coming.
"Well, shit," he said, turning to head towards whatever had made the noise.
"Language!" shouted Granny.
He shook his head and chuckled. He had gotten his language skills from her.
'PED, will this form handle stomach acid?'
(PROBABLY NOT, WANT ME TO EVOLVE YOU?)
'Probably for the best. I'm about to see the stomach of a very nasty creature. Oh, and it has diamond-like teeth all the way down its throat, if you could help with that too, that would be great.'
(OF COURSE, DUSTIN. INITIATING EVOLUTION.)
His form shrunk only a tiny bit, and the crystal scales started covering his skin. He could feel his hair disappear, and scales covered his eyes.
(EVOLUTION COMPLETE, GOOD LUCK)
Breaking into a jog, to keep the worm from reaching the others, he soon saw the dust plume that gave away their location. There were three of them. Now that he thought about it, they never traveled alone, and often fought over their prey, tearing it into pieces. This would be interesting.
Just before he reached them, there was a whining noise behind him, and he ducked, sliding to a stop. A ship flew overhead, blasting bolts of energy at the three worms, and sending them fleeing back the way they had come. He looked up at the ship, as it turned around and flew back towards him.
As it landed, he stood up and dusted himself off.
"Uz'En! This way, hurry before they return!" cried a woman, standing at the open door.
"I have others with me," he called back, pointing back at the hut he had built.
"We'll grab them on the way!" she said, waving for him to hurry.
As Dustin went to jog towards the ship, he suddenly had a strange feeling, and stopped. "I'll meet you there!" he called at her, and started to run for all he was worth, away from the ship.
Behind him, he heard her cuss, and the door slammed shut. The engines revved up, as it prepared to jump back into the air.
'PED, I need to move faster!'
His legs started to get longer, and he was suddenly flying across the ground, eating up the distance.
Granny saw him coming, and the ship right behind him, because she jumped up and dashed into the hut with the others. When he arrived, she waved for him to join her inside.
He just barely managed to squeeze in, with his super long legs. The ship screamed overhead, and then returned.
"You'll need to kill them quick. They've probably already told their base that they've found you, so reinforcements will be here soon." Granny's breath smelled awful in the enclosed space.
"Who are they?" gasped Dustin, trying to ignore the smell.
Walter was watching in silence, as Trey stared at each of them in terror. Dustin worried that he might not make it off this planet.
"They're human, but they're not our friends." Granny shifted her weight, glancing down at Sherry, who was still unconscious on the ground.
"How did they find us?" asked Walter.
"We just crash landed a ship in their neighborhood. It's kind of hard to miss that," said Dustin. The part that was bothering him, was the fact that they knew he was a Uz'En.
The hum of the ship suddenly stopped, and Dustin looked around in confusion. Walter and Trey were on the ground, holding their heads and spasming. Granny looked terrifying, as her eyes dilated and she started to snarl, her teeth bared in ferocious display. He tried to pull away from her, but she ignored him, darting out of the hut and out of sight.
His eyes went wide when he realized they had used the big gun on him. The Josagn had tried to use one on him once, during a bee swarm, but he had been protected by the shelter he had been in. Glancing back at Walter and Trey, it seemed they were especially susceptible to it.
Sound returned, and he could hear screaming. Poking his head out of the hut, he saw a gaping hole in the side of the ship, and blood was splattered on the inside of the windshield.
"What the hell?" gasped Walter, behind him.
"They tried to use a weapon on us, but it looks like Granny took care of it."
"Who's Granny?" asked Sherry, weakly.