"Excuse me!"

Brek turned around to face the newcomer. It was a young man, no more than twenty, with dark blond hair and a bright smile.

"What can I do for you?" Brek asked, placing the cover back over the fuel tank of his vehicle.

"My name's Travis," the young man replied. "I'm ready to leave this place, but I don't have the money to pay my way." He looked sheepish as he ran his fingers through his bangs.

Brek looked him over from head to foot. He was short and slender, but sturdy looking.

"What do you want me to do about it?"

"Well," Travis continued, "you looked like a pleasant fellow, and I though maybe we could work out a deal. I'm good at maintenance, and if you give me a ride to wherever you're going, I could do all the work and upkeep on your vehicle." Here Travis got a hopeful, yet innocent expression as he waited for the traveler's reply.

Thinking, Brek stared at the sky, then back at the earnest young man standing in front of him. Traveling by himself was lonely, he decided.

"Very well. I'll take you."

"Really? Great!" Travis grinned happily.

"Hop on in," Brek instructed. "We'll leave the refueling stop in about ten minutes."

Hoisting his pack onto his shoulder, Travis got into the waiting ship, and Brek used one of his twelve purple tentacles to close the door behind him.