The last distress signal was two weeks old. Silence packaged in disbelief permeated the transport. With no time to prepare, each Zing Tao was given standard issue identification cards in the first prep meeting onboard their transport.

Papa Kyra did his best to look studious, studying every aspect of the Javalina Main Command Dreadnought. He hoped no one noticed the sweat dripping down his forehead. Years of working with fear were about to be put to the test. So far, fear had the upper hand. The older hands onboard knew and he felt, without words, their compassion and undying brotherly love. Once a Zing Tao, one was a Zing Tao for life. The brotherhood was small and about as tight knit as was Hynerianly possible.

Not much was known about Javalinas. They were known to be aggressive and technologically advanced, but other than that, subsector Zael was still vastly unexplored. What little they knew came from the several scientific outpost established to study Zael duality, a subject near and dear to the heart of all Zing Tao.

Zael Studies, what few had been published, fascinated the entire Zing Tao community. The first distress reports were disturbing. The second and third stuck fear and from fear action. Papa Kyra’s transport would be the first to reach the sector. It had been two weeks since the last relay message had been received. No one quite knew what to expect.

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