While Morkai was talking to agent Effgrin, I asked Sara and Pricilla why they chose to come.
"These agents came and interviewed us," explained Pricilla, "I became worried since this whole thing took place here at Colin's, then when Sara called me and told me she had been interviewed as well, and was concerned for her brother, I came to make sure Karla wouldn't be caught up in this." Karla had been helping Mrs. Blessing, turned to her sister and replied,
"Well I am caught up in this sister, I told Moreck I would marry him, I love him very much, and we don't need you trying to interfere in our lives." Pricilla appeared hurt by this remark, but continued,
"I'm only trying to help Karla, if he is sent to Comac 4 you won't be permitted to go with him, it's a penal colony." Karla could not respond to this, just glaring at her sister and resuming her work. Sara had been talking to her brother, obviously coming over concerns for her brother.
"Where are your children?" I asked,
"Their father's are taking care of them for a change," replied, Sara, "we thought this an ideal time for them to help their offspring, Karuk grumbled at first, but Sadrina is such a little pixie, he gave in to the inevitable."
"Same with Jaerka who was eager to spend more time with his son, anyway, we're here to stand with our family members."
It wasn't long before others started knocking on the door, Sandrick made his presence shaking hands with Colin and his wife,
"I'm here as the official representative of Shai Alyt should any problems arise involving our agents here on Kagor." He also cracked a smile adding,
"I'm also here to confer with you Mr. Blessing, as well as Mr. Bickford, would it be possible to bring him out here?" Morkai spoke up,
"I'll give him a call on the comm and let him know I'll meet him at the farm, excuse me." I waited until he was out the door then went after him.
"Morkai," I said in a hurried voice, "Don't call Andy, there is someone else on this planet tapped into our frequency, don't ask me how, but a couple relfa's ago I was chatting with him and a man's voice broke in asking who we were and if he could help us."
"Falthian," asked Morkai. Shaking my head, I replied,
"No, I don't believe so, he sounded like he was here in the states." Morkai thought a moment then said,
"Don't say anything about this to Sandrick or those government agents. Someone might get the idea we had something to do with this, that perhaps somehow we let forbidden technology get away from us, and now Kagorians have advanced radio technology."
I promised to keep my mouth shut as Morkai figured out what to do instead.
"Maybe I can talk Colin into riding into town and dropping a telegram to Andy."
"There's no guarantee he will receive it before you leave later on," I replied.
"Well that's the chance we'll have to take," replied Morkai. As we talked, more people were exiting the craft, I recognized Jallack who was making a beeline for us, but there was another man and a boy who looked around Caleb's age.
"Oh that's Garath Kalcyr and his son Armaka. He's quite a chap to talk to, used to fly deep space freighters, but he tells an entirely different story about Kith and Juko." By now Jallack had caught up to us,
"Have you heard from Junni lately?" was the first thing out of his mouth. I patted his shoulder,
"Calm down Jallack," I calmly replied, "She's fine, I spent some time with her a couple relfa's ago, why, what's up?"
"Those "Japes" from the government want to have me bring in Junni, seems they have a lot of questions concerning how she got the travel permits to come here, plus who issued them, and who gave her initial permission to export goods back to Falth, it's just a damn mess…Say Morkai could I borrow that Skray so I can go pick her up?" Morkai formed a disgusted look on his face but gave in,
"You can, but only after I go get someone, and after it get's dark." Jallack looked displeased, but there was nothing he could do about it.
We then headed inside the Na'Vas as Morkai was eager to see his son, J.M. was awake and sitting up in his crib, he looked frightened when he saw his father, but Morkai picked him up and gave him a big hug.
"Here, let me show you," I said. Taking J.M. I told Morkai to stand off a bit and encourage his son to come to him, as I set him on the floor. J.M' sat on the floor for a moment looking at his father wondering what he wanted, then pushed himself up and staggered over to Morkai who laughed as he picked him up. J.M. decided that this big man wasn't going to harm him as he began to giggle.
"I sure missed him," said Morkai, "I sure wish I had been there to see him walk for the first time." We let J.M. run to his father one more time, then I took him for his bath and a change of clothes and breakfast. Morkai left for a moment but quickly returned with none other than doctor Metana, who asked how J.M. was doing. I told him that he'd been learning to walk these past two relfa's and that his leg muscles were getting stronger.
"So what brings you here doctor?" I asked.
"I came to see Mrs. Bickford's baby, er, I mean your cousin's, probably be the last time I get to see him unless they visit Falth, but that picture Andy sent was such a lovely gift, it sits prominently on my desk. I also understand Mr. Blessing's wife is about to have a child, perhaps I check with her as well, I working on a dissertation concerning human newborns, tying it all in with my study of human physiology."
Together we walked to the house. As we were exiting the Na'Vas, a large tracked vehicle was emerging from the newly arrived ship.
"That's the welding rig the Andara tech's are going to use to work on our ship," observed Morkai, who insisted on carrying J.M. on his shoulder.
"It's a robot," added Morkai, referring to the machine just now coming off the ramp, "they'll set it up next to our ship where it will weld special metal plates over the damage, two techs operate the thing, the others are inside checking the ship's system for any damage there, there's five tech's all told, I'll have to get with them here shortly." Colin's kitchen was a real beehive of activity, even more so when we arrived. J.M. suddenly found himself quite popular, Kara remembered that she was supposed to have been looking after him, Sara and Pricilla were both trying to talk, Colin and Sandrick were talking to the government agents, Caleb and Armaka were making friends, Harnak and Jallack were laughing about something.
It was quite the intergalactic scene, two races sharing. Finally, things settled down, Karla and I helped serve breakfast, more introductions were made, everybody found a place at the large table, and someone to talk to. Karla pulled me aside, and asked,
"You don't think they will try and take Moreck do you, oh Holly, I'm so scared, Pricilla isn't helping things, making snide comments about Moreck." I looked her in the eye and said,
"Karla, the fact that they didn't arrest him outright is a good sign, he's being asked to state his side of the story with facts and details indicates that they are interested in his side of things, just be strong and pray for him, and have a little faith." Later, Colin said to me,
"I told that government man I would vouch for Moreck's character, Andy will to. That boy has been a real godsend for me, young Caleb is really too small to be very useful right now, but Moreck really gets in there and helps get the job done. He tells me he'd like to continue to be a doctor, but I got to tell you, he's been a pretty fair cowboy. Oh, that Effgrin fellow gave me one of them fancy writin' things, my sister says she'll help me write everything down."
"What are you supposed to write?" I asked.
"Oh, pretty much everything that happened that night, just like Moreck is doing." Colin chuckled, "They is even taking that old door for evidence."
"Well they have to be very thorough," I replied.
Morkai and doctor Metana were admiring J.M., who wasn't sure about all the commotion in the room, but once breakfast was over, everybody began to drift off. The government agents went off to take pictures of the damage on the Na'Vas, I saw Caleb and Armaka going out the door together, doctor Metana was talking with Olivia, Colin and Sandrick were going off to check the Wort fields, Morkai was holding J.M. while he talked with Jallack and Harnak. Sara, Pricilla and I cleaned up and washed the dishes, Karla was off somewhere else. Once the dishes were clean and put away Sara went to find her brother, giving me some privacy with Pricilla,
"Your sister tells me she's prepared to marry Moreck, and for a time, they were thinking of running off when he was sure the government would send someone to arrest him."
"His father tried to kill you," said Pricilla, I'm not so sure I want Karla involved with someone like him…Bad influence."
"He's all right Pricilla, I've talked with him on numerous occasions, he's very remorseful, I talked him out of running, I really do believe he loves Karla very much, as she loves him." I then lowered my voice,
"She even told him." It took a moment fro her to realize what I was talking about, her realization resulting in a gasp.
"Karla told him…That?" I nodded, Pricilla put her hands to her face, not sure what to say.
"It's all right Pricilla," I replied, "He knows, and has been very understanding, let's face it, your sister has fallen for a Nuelian just as you and I have." Pricilla started to say something but thought better of it, then just sighed,
"Suppose he is taken to Comac 4, what will she do then?"
Before I could answer, Pricilla answered her own question.
"I guess she'll have to come with us, I suppose she could stay with Jaerka and I, he knows any number of fine young men perhaps we could introduce her to some of them, maybe she might find someone who could take her mind off Moreck." I smiled, then replied,
"Now you know as well as I do Pricilla, Karla won't go with you, she's said as much, she's terrified of space travel, anyway, call it a hunch, but I don't think he'll be going to Comac 4."
"My sister has been through a terrible ordeal," insisted Pricilla, "I'm worried that Moreck will be forced to return home, and Karla will be left with no one, with all that's happened to her there's no telling what this could do to her."
Just try and relax Pricilla," I replied, "Karla is tougher than you think, especially after the "incident," with her father, Moreck has eased her mind, I won't place a bet on it, but I really don't think he'll be taken back home, his home will now be here on earth just as ours is Falth, two young people building a life together." Pricilla remained unconvinced, but replied,
"Well, I certainly hope your right."
I found Morkai, Jallack, and Garath standing over by the Na'Vas talking with a couple of the Andara techs as another was guiding the mobile platform in position next to the damaged part of our ship, agent Effgrin then joined us explaining,
"Before you get going on repairs, I need to photograph all pertinent damage for the record, I won't be long."
The lead tech looked at him and shrugged,
" Well just be careful climbing up on the scaffold, it's easy to loose your balance climbing around up there." Agent Effgrin glared at him, but made no comment. Morkai then introduced two of the techs,
"This is head technician, Jath Gersark, and Urgon Chaimon, Gulan Lormecki is the one operating the platform." I shook hands with the two men, as Jath added,
"Lorvam Krankark is inside, and Parmec Drojella is over at the other ship, they're our electronic expert's, uh, we were wondering if it would be permissible to look around this area when we're done for the una, quite frankly we all jumped at the chance to come here to Kagor and we'd like to look around a bit."
"I've got no problem with it," replied Morkai, "However you may want to check with Colin first, he's got cattle roaming around somewhere, plus we don't want you folks stumbling across any Kagorians who wouldn't be able to understand you, Colin will give you an idea of where you can walk." Then Garath Kalcyr approached me with a similar request, but adding,
"When Deshka chartered my ship I couldn't believe my luck, to actually go to Kagor. My wife hates space travel but Armaka jumped at the chance, his teacher gave him a special assignment to prepare a full report on everything he sees and does here. Little did we know there would be a boy his own age here, I've been watching the two of them play." I smiled and said,
"Well Garath, it just so happens I'm a teacher by training I'm part of the Kagorian studies program at the university, although of late I seem to be more of the student. I'm currently helping Caleb with his studies as the Blessing's live too far from any sort of school. I'd be delighted to help your boy as well. Perhaps we could put together a collection of various leaves from the trees, as well as plants and flowers that grow in this area. Maybe Armaka would like to sit in on our class sessions, and learn a little of the language and history of this nation. Your son has been given an opportunity few children his age could ever hope to imagine, I think we can make this experience one he'll remember for the rest of his life."
Garath gave hearty approval to the idea, so for the following relfa we would go out and pick various leaves, and flowers, as well as bark samples from the trees in the area. Armaka recorded all of it, on his videocam, even getting shots of chipmunks, squirrels, a marmot, a turtle, and even a long shot of a deer and a coyote. He also took pictures of the Andara crew welding repair plates on the Na'Vas's hull, Colin riding his horse, agent Norfei told him not to take any pictures of Moreck, which I thought odd at the time. I also had Caleb make up a collection as well, naming everything he collected, and then we would carefully press our collection between plasticine pages preserving them for the future. Morkai changed his mind about making Jallack wait until his return from picking up Andy, letting him leave to get Junni around dusk. After dinner, and the chores were done Sandrick suggested we build a campfire and all sit around it and just talk and enjoy each other's company, remembering it from the gathering we had back at my Uncle's farm. The idea was well received, even by the government agents. Moreck finished his account, so for the first night he sat next to agent Effgrin who asked him questions concerning his recollections. An anxious Karla sat next to him with her sister next to her. The techs as well as Garath were just as enthusiastic as Sandrick was, doctor Metana also enjoyed this informal gathering as well.
Close to midnight, Jallack returned, bringing with him an angry Junni who confronted both agents demanding to know why she would have to return to Falth,
"I have the proper permits I spoke to a Mr. Darmorig from the foreign office who assured me everything was all in order, see, here is my permit." Both agents looked at the permit then agent Norfei said,
"I'm sorry ma'am, Mr. Darmorig no longer works for the foreign office, he's…"Been relieved of his duties." This did not sit well with Junni who began to screech, alarming everyone else.
"Well he was certainly in charge of things when I left, how am I to know that he's been relieved." Junni was finally convinced to calm down, with agent Effgrin carefully explaining,
"I'm sorry ma'am We can't do anything for you here, this matter requires that you return to Falth and re-submit your application, basically the foreign office wants to make very sure no part of the prime directive is being violated, and that what you're importing back to Falth meets certain with approval." Junni finally realized that she was up against a brick wall and could do no more, other than return to Falth.
"What am I going to do, I'll be ruined," was all she was heard to cry.
She finally settled down pouring out her problems to Jallack who appeared rather bored as he was forced to listen to her complaints. Morkai told me he would leave around three in the morning so we went to bed early, as I was putting J.M. to bed Morkai watched with a big grin on his face,
"I missed both of you very much, especially him. I certainly wish I'd been here to see him walk, I certainly don't want to miss anymore events like that." Morkai and I made love with a passion that bespoke of our deep longing at being away from each other. As we lay entwined in each other's arms, he said,
"Hanna and Nargra hope everything in going well here, Hanna gave me a gold disc to give to Colin in the hope he would put flowers on Mary's grave"
"What are those two up to?" I asked, Morkai chuckled,
"Spending all their time on the beach at Akdor watching Graza grow and simply being a family. Oh, that reminds me, I delivered a letter to Sally from Andy, and judging from what he must have said, she wasn't real happy, she wrote him a response which I'll give him when I pick him up." Out time together was all too short, a few short shon's of sleep and he was gone again, I had him take my father's Spencer and ammunition canister , then stood in the cool early morning watching the run-a-bout rise straight up, and zoom off into the pre-dawn darkness.