6.9

As soon as the others had locked the man Jerret had to assume was ‘Misa’ he took up a post in front of Calvin’s cell warily. The Mr’Kana and Pascal seemed content to retreat to a different part of the ship but the officer stayed in the room.

“So…” The man started, but the silence in the room seemed impenetrable. Calvin chose that moment to wake up and sit up. There was a brief moment where he seemed almost back to normal, and then he started screaming again, startling the officer and forcing Jerret to cover his ears. The noise petered off by the time the other two had reappeared and Calvin fell silent, staring off into space. The officer approached the cell and tapped on the wall, “Calvin?” He frowned when Calvin didn’t respond, “What the hell did you do to him?” He turned on Jerret, who put up his hands defensively even though his ears were still ringing.

“I didn’t do anything, lightning hit the ship the other night and ever since he’s done nothing but scream or stare at nothing. Can’t even get him to eat.”

The officer gave him an incredulous look then turned back to Calvin, kneeling down to be at eye level with him, “Calvin, it’s Mark.” There was still no response and he frowned.

“So is your buddy done scaring the hell out of everyone?” The pascal asked. Jerret started to retort but realized they were talking to the officer and not him.

“I don’t know, but I don’t think we’re getting answers out of him any time soon.” He stood up again and turned to Jerret, “So what’s your part in this?”

Jerret could feel his temper flare briefly and choked off a growl, “Wrong place, wrong time ‘sall.” He didn’t trust himself to say more without pissing the man off.

“What happened then? I know you broke out of restraints on my ship, why?”

“Yes why would I want out of such hospitable circumstances.” He couldn’t help himself that time and could see the officer set his jaw a little. The gun was still present, tucked into his belt a bit carelessly, and Jerret decided against further provocation, “I saw your buddy taking the girl and it didn’t seem right, so I tried to stop him.”

“So you’re saying you had no part in this whole mess? Just an innocent bystander?”

“Hey we can probably hold off on the interrogation until we’ve got the kid and are headed back, man.” The pascal finally spoke up.

“For all we know he’s done something to her, we didn’t see her run off to ‘find something.'”

“I would NEVER-” That time Jerret did growl even as he spoke, and everyone else fell silent. He stopped and took a calming breath.

It was obvious the man was more focused on blaming him for something than on hurting Calvin, so Jerret pushed past them to the outer door and sat down to watch for Jessie. A moment later he could hear the Mr’kana behind him and turned his head slightly to look.

“More questions?”

“No. I am wondering if it will storm before the little one is back.”

Jerret didn’t reply, looking up at the sky nervously. The ominous clouds were back and he fancied for a moment that he felt a drop hit him. The Mr’kana squeezed past and stood outside. He turned back to Jerret after a moment and held out a hand. “I am Yikikik. They call me Yik.”

Jerret frowned at the sharply clawed hand, “Jerret. Nobody calls me anything, really.”

Yik withdrew his hand, seemingly unphased, and sat down on one of the logs across from him, tail twitching erratically. Jerret had to press to the side of the door to allow the Pascal through a moment later. Yik and the Pascal spoke quietly for a moment and then the Pascal headed off in the direction they came from before.

“Where is she going?”

Yik gave him a startled look, “How do you know? I did not tell you!”

“Know what?”

“It is a secret, Sam must not know that she is a she but I am the worst at secrets but I tried how did you know?” Yik was suddenly very close and Jerret pushed him back a step.

“Who is Sam and what the hell are you talking about?”

“Sam is the guy Yik knocked out earlier and don’t tell him Vortran is a girl because it’s a secret.” The officer’s voice behind him startled Jerret.

“Vortran’s the Pascal?” Jerret looked back at Yik, who nodded.

“I did not tell him!” Yik insisted.

“It’s fine, stop panicking.” The man said, pushing past Jerret as well.

Jerret felt a drop hit his hand and looked down at it. There was definitely water so he hadn’t imagined it. He looked around the clearing but there was still no sign of Jessie.

“Should we look for her?” Yik seemed to be thinking the same thing as him.

“She might come back before it storms.” Mark looked up at the sky and Jerret could hear a drop of rain hit him in the forehead, “Which way did she go?”

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