It was late in the evening, and Queen Aethona Knight watched the horizon rise above her as the lift sunk below the planet's surface. She was accompanied by three personal guards—as would any of the Throne members of the many clans when outside the main grounds. Her last glimpse was of bright and vibrant colors touching the surface and spreading shadows throughout the land of Mahkah—a world that had been taken long ago by the Knight Clan within the Xydian galaxy.

A small ball of light lit the confined and uncomfortable space down the abyssal shaft. The building itself had been abandoned hundreds of years ago, which made it the perfect place to hide something…or someone.

Aethona began to smooth out her outfit and recheck her hair, as she grew impatient. She was dressed very elegantly—as was expected of a high-class individual—in a wide and large midnight solid blue dress with a loose black beaded blouse. Adorned her head was a golden ornate crown and sprouting out stylishly was her thick black hair. A long necklace with large gems hung down her bare chest, seductively. And on both of her long, thin, delicate hands were various rings with enormous gems as well. She played with the rings on her fingers, a nervous habit that had formed when she was far younger than over seven hundred years.

The personal guards were completely armored and armed, and more than willing to sacrifice their lives for their queen—who was the current sovereign of the Knight Clan since the death of King Taylon and the few heirs she had borne, Princes Dayleen and Fierus. The armor was made of a unique metal called tytanius and was the toughest element in this galaxy, protecting anyone from various sword and laser weapons, as well as the monstrous animals that roamed various planets. Each clan had a distinct attire, even the soldiers. The Knight Clan armor was mostly black with red and yellow highlights. The personal guards, however, looked more formal with cloaks that draped over their armor and carried long stun batons.

Xydianite's were bipedal with two toed feet, two arms, broad and very tall bodies with a rough bony material protruding all along their spines as well as the elbows, knees, ankles, and eyebrows. Between their eyes and mouth was nothing but a slope of skin with two slits that acted as a nasal cavity. Their ears were small holes on each side of their heads covered over by a thin protective skin layer. But depending on the size, shape and gender, some possessed different skin coloring, hairstyles, piercing and markings, or attire and accessories. Being a simple society didn't mean they couldn't be diverse.

The slaves—on the other hand—possessed no powers or supernatural abilities and were only loosely related in biological appearance. They had weak thin skin, brittle bones, five toed feet and no bony material or any kind of protrusions could be found on their bodies—save for the lump of flesh with holes for a nose between their eyes and mouths and a stretched oval shape for ears on each side of their heads.

The society—itself—separated the Xydianite's into two classes: royalty and commoners, but both were joined by one of thousands of clans throughout the Xydian galaxy—all fighting to climb up the hierarchy that was the very essence of their entire existence.

Over a hundred thousand years ago, Xydianite's rose as warriors and fought each other over territory. The few who rejected such a society were exiled and wandered aimlessly throughout the galaxy. And for the most part the aboriginals weren't concerned. All they really cared about was war and destruction. And at interludes various types of arenas, races, challenges, and competitions—mostly among each individual clan's numbers, but on occasion against others—acted as forms of entertainment.

The commoners lived more simple lives as machines and factories took care of the grueling work of growing and harvesting food as well as manufacturing clothes, armor, weapons, and anything else that was a necessity or requirement. However, they were expected to be educated and trained in one of several occupations. The most valued were soldiers as war and violence were the most natural instinct of a Xydianite. But those that refused or were unable to fight became a scientist, medic, instructor, pilot, guard, technology expert or some other path that contributed to furthering the pursuit of war or discovering new ways of battling one another.

Common vices were pleasures and feasts—mainly celebrated after great battles or a clan rising within the ranks. Mostly there were no divisions between the genders, personality types, and even age—as they all maintained youth—but some clans held prejudices. There were little rules and laws the Xydianite's abided by. Rare were diseases and health concerns as their bodies contained self-healing and regenerative abilities. Many took dangerous risks, but they did not always survive—although, going down in glory was just as thrilling as fighting in the endless wars to a Xydianite.

Aethona let out an exasperated breath, though container her dignified posture. Only in extreme cases did Aethona let down her guard. She had been waiting rather long—not just for today, but the past several months, if not years…

And it had better be for a good reason or I'll terminate my temporary relationship with that deranged bastard.

Qwa-Roca was one of the minorities that were considered unworthy. It was rare, but throughout their existence certain mental and physical debilitating conditions arose, sometimes at birth or long after. Qwa-Roca had once been like all the others, but had somehow become obsessed with things and even individuals. Eventually he was chased away and forced to wander like a hermit, keeping only to himself and his own devious devices. In actuality, he was supposed to be dead.

At some point—Aethona didn't known exactly when—the Knight Clan had easily conquered the planet's system where Qwa-Roca had been hiding. During an exploratory mission, Qwa-Roca had been found, then imprisoned, and sentenced to death, but one of the guards overheard him babbling about his knowledge of advanced genetic engineering. Aethona had been informed immediately and chose to postpone his execution. And at first, his ramblings were gibberish to Aethona, but as the Knight Clan continued to sink, she became desperate. Even if the pathetic creature didn't deliver what was promised, it wouldn't hurt the clan.

But that had been long ago and Aethona's patience was growing very, very thin.

The lift came to a stop and the double doors hissed open to a very long and dark hallway. Aethona and her bodyguards moved forward, though they could all feel the tension. It was ridiculous. Qwa-Roca was always guarded and could easily be subdued by the shock collar around his neck. He was also heavily drugged, to help keep his deranged mind lucid and cooperative. Rare did he threaten any physical violence or start brawls with the guards. But he was unknown, unpredictable, and that instilled the worst kind of fear—even in immortal and invulnerable warriors such as the Xydianite's.

They came to a thick steel door that was securely protected by a keypad. One of the guards stepped forward and entered the code. The door opened with a hiss.

Aethona took a deep breath and entered.

The room was vast and filled more than adequately with various types of electronic equipment. Most she didn't even recognize and at first glance seemed useless. There were large vats, tubes, and vials filled with varying colors, thicknesses, and amounts of liquids, gasses, solids, and other substances she didn't even consider trying to identify. Wires and cords hung from the ceilings and along the floor like webbings. Every once in a while, a spray of sparks erupted from an overpowered panel or a conduit would burst and begin leaking whatever chemical it contained until the pressure was reset by the automated system. Dozens of computers were set all around following orders and functions as per Qwa-Roca's requests. Some of the screens displayed still images and animated examples of the varying functions of the Xydianite body, while others merely text, or a mixture of both. Their bodies had been so well designed that there was an unspoken belief that they were the most perfect corporeal intelligence in the very universe.

They did not age like their slaves and unless literally killed they were immortal. They had regenerative abilities, the strongest immune system to combat most infections, poisons, and diseases that plagued the many slaves—who had been taken from another galaxy too long ago to remember. Pain wasn't much of a problem as their bodies produced a very strong adrenaline, but also a substance that was like a drug to either mask the injury or make that area of the body permanently numb. Microscopic organisms lived inside that ate away infected cells before attempting to repair the damage. However, if their bodies or organs were too far-gone, Xydianite's could adorn mechanical prosthetic limbs and organs as replacements.

But the most disturbing feature of this makeshift laboratory was how Qwa-Roca had adorned the room with disfigured pieces of junk material. Sharp and nightmarish shapes of metal or crushed glass, broken circuits, buttons and knobs, and various colored liquids had been spewed all along the floors and walls. And each time in this room, Aethona felt a shiver run up and down her spine. She hugged herself a moment before remembering why she was here.

Qwa-Roca wasn't in sight. Her sharp green eyes gazed around until a clatter of sounds came from a large shipping container that had been turned into a small office. The guards escorted her to the entrance where two sentries were stationed. Inside, sitting at a disarrayed desk, was Qwa-Roca himself.

It was startling, with skin that looked pale from lack of sunlight, but also a grayish-brown as if he was literally molding. He was a hunchback, hairless with a long egg shaped head and his face was stretched out—all caused by experiments of his own doing and exposure to dangerous elements. He had no eyebrows either, making his eyes—which did not match—that much more alien looking. One was a brownish-red and the other was a yellowish-green. His teeth were elongated and curved inward. And lastly, he was dressed in a gray work suit that was old and used, but refused to change.

Whenever Aethona was forced to look upon this disgusting excuse of an intelligent life form she questioned herself. She was queen of her clan, meant for elegant parties and important council meetings. But then she was reminded of the disgraceful position the Knight Clan had fallen to.

She stepped towards the desk. "You know why I've come."

"Do I?" Qwa-Roca spoke, with a hint of a grin.

Aethona looked down upon him as if he was an insignificant and bothersome insect.

"Perhaps I do, or perhaps I don't…"

He spoke strangely—sometimes in riddles, sometimes questioning everything or echoing words spoken aloud. He was also always excited, as if high on something.

"Do not waste my time, Qwa," Aethona told him. "You promised results and all the resources have to show for it is this poor and deranged excuse for a laboratory."

"Yes, yes, yes…the lab, my lab…many promises, many results…"

"Focus, Qwa!" she snapped.

He jerked and froze. Intimidation and threats were the only way to calm and gain his attention.

"The experiment, remember?"

"Yes, yes, yes…the experiment…it is on schedule. I remember very well. Yes, I do."

"What schedule?" she asked. "You never mentioned this before."

"Soon, soon, soon…" He turned to the computer and his fingers began fluttering at the keys. Several windows came up on the screen, mostly text, animated versions of cells, and so forth. He pointed, "See, see here…on schedule…yes."

"What is here, Qwa?" she demanded. "Explain it to me. Explain so I can understand."

He stared at her quizzically for a moment, then began rubbing his long thin fingers and hands together. "You…your body…everyone has a design…"

"Yes…go on."

"Very complicated design, yes, very complicated," he continued. "Too easy to make mistakes, and must be done exactly or…" slap! He clasped his hands together—hard—startling Aethona.

"Are you saying the experiment…could…" she searched for the right words.

"Burst!" he said excitedly.

"Explode?"

"No, no, no, no…not like in wars and battles," he said. "Like implosion, wink out of existence..."

"Your rambling again, Qwa. Explain again."

"The code!" he said excitedly. "Yes, the code, it is everything! It must be perfect! Or no experiment. Understand now?"

Aethona was beginning to—yes—but she was also displeased. So much time had passed and still there was nothing for her to see. Nothing to prove this crazed and abhorrent creature could create the ultimate warrior for the Knight Clan to use as a means to rise to the top.

"But I want proof," she demanded.

He stared at her, confused.

"I want to see with my own eyes," she used a hand gesture as an additional means of communication.

Qwa-Roca rose and at first Aethona didn't know what he was intending until he gestured for her to follow him. They walked to the end of his office where he opened another large door—the other end of the shipping container that connected to another passage in the vast room. The sound of air and coolant was released, turning the floor to mist. It was dark, darker than the rest of his lab. She followed though, but not before ordering the guards to remain where they stood. It was down a long hall, filled with even more cables and electronic equipment that led to a cramped room. Inside the temperature was far colder, but Aethona merely altered her own body's temperature to compensate.

He pointed to the monstrous machine and she felt apprehension. The outer casing prevented Aethona from distinguishing its function, but it was shaped like a bowl, turned upside down with only a few windows and control panels embedded. Large thick clouds of steam rose from various perforated sections at the top.

Qwa moved closer, opened one of the window panels and gestured for her to come near. Inside was a transparent vat filled with fluids surrounding some sort of mass. Qwa nudged her and pointed to a display screen nearby. She saw a strange and unreadable form of text.

"The code!" he said excitedly again. Then he gestured inside. "Right on schedule, yes, yes…right on schedule."

It was then that Aethona truly did grasp what he had been trying to tell her. Right in front of her was a life form—growing—as per the instructions of the code Qwa-Roca had input. Inside was victory. Inside...was the Knight Clans' last hope of taking back its rightful place in the Xydian hierarchy.


A/N: Due to FictionPress's strict Mature Content policy, I cannot post the rest of this story here! I have created a blog specifically to post the full length novel which is free to read! No tricks or scams! I write for the pleasure of the craft and have no desire to make money or be officially published, but I do wish for a small fan base to develop! If you like what you've read here, go to my profile for the link to read the rest of the novel!

IMPORTANT: The content of this novel contains graphic imagery, sexual scenes and themes, violence, blood, and language!