Earth, Melbourne 2332.
Francine stepped into the elevators and pressed the foyer button. Shi was thinking about Voxanna and what shi went through. No one should go through the heartache and misery that shi went through. Especially with new life on the way.
As the doors opened, and shi went back to the front desk. Francine heard a startled cry from the receptionist as shi saw four taurs suddenly appear out of thin air two foxtaurs and two chakats. The foxtaur herm was Arctic with a black stripe from hir neck to the tip of the tail. The kit on the leash was a typical foxtaur, red fur with black socks and gloves and a black tipped bushy tail. Shi also had black ears and a white chest and hir hair was white with a tinge of pink.
The chakat was light blue, with red and yellow streaks running down the length of hir body as well as bright red ears. Shi also had a red paw pattern on a yellow circle. Hir cub on the leash was yellow with red and orange sun-shaped patterns, and hir head was cropped with lime-coloured hair. On hir right chest was a green circle with a blue paw print in the middle. Shi was tugging on the lead, looking around and sniffing at everything within reach.
"I’m sorry, but who are you and how did you get here?" the receptionist asked the new arrivals.
<My name is Illumanati, and I’m here for the poker tournament,> the foxtaur replied, communicating through telepathy to the young herm fox.
"Umm ahh, yes, I see that you are on the list. And who are your companions?"
"They would be Solarblaze and Stephillum, and this must be Sunrise, correct?" Francine asked, walking up and giving Nati a hug, who returned it happily.
Turning to the chakat mother, Francine also gave hir a hug. "So, are you staying for the tournament as well?"
Sunrise handed the leash to Illumanati, who grabbed it with hir own child’s leash.
"No, sorry, I have other appointments in town, and I won’t be finished until later Sunday evening. So I’ll be missing out on the game," shi replied, giving hir co-mate a kisslick then gave hir child a hug.
"Now sweety, you behave while you’re here, ok?" shi said, tostling the two year old’s head of hair. The cub responded by giving hir a kisslick on hir cheek.
Illumanati turned to hir seven year old kit, who was playing with Solarblaze. <Now Stephy,> shi said, getting hir child’s attention.
"Yes momma?" shi said, looking up.
<I want you to look after Solar when I’m busy with the adults, ok?> shi said, laying a hand on the young cubs shoulder.
"Yes mom, I’ll look after my sister." Shi replied, petting and tickling the cubs back playfully. The cub responded by rolling on hir back, playing with Stephy’s fingers, gently biting and licking them.
"Actually, if they want, there’s a pool on the roof that they can enjoy?" Francine commented, smiling.
"Really? Can we go momma?" Stephy asked, jumping up and down.
<I don’t see why not, as long as you look after your sister in the baby pool?> shi replied, looking sternly at the kit.
"Yes momma, I will," shi said, excitedly wagging hir tail.
Francine asked the receptionist behind the desk to show the cubs to the pool, Solarblaze received a kisslick from hir mother, before left for hir appointment in the city.
"Ahh, now. Nati, I was wondering if you could help me with problem." Shi said, turning to the foxtaur.
<Sure, what’s the problem?> the arctic foxtaur replied, turning to the rabbit morph.
"We have just received a new guest, and shi’s a little down due hir losing hir mate last year. And to compound the situation, shi’s five months along with hir first child and homeless. I was wondering if you could check up on hir, being as you’re a doctor and all," shi replied, laying hir hand on Nati’s shoulders.
<I’ll see what I can do; will shi be joining us for dinner tonight?>
"I asked hir, and shi agreed, but I got the feeling that shi hadn’t made up hir mind yet. Could you, perhaps, persuade hir to come along? I just hate seeing young pregnant mothers depressed and alone."
<Sure, I’ll be happy too. I’ll bring the cubs along, maybe they’ll cheer hir up,> shi replied. <I’ll go as soon as I have settled in. What room number is shi in?>
"Number eleven on the ninth floor. I sure hope that you can help hir?"
<As do I I hate misery. Especially in new mothers. How did shi lose hir mate, if you don’t mind me asking?> Illumanati asked softly in Francine’s mind.
"From what I understand, another one of those H1 riots, and what’s worse… it happened during Christmas week last year…" Francine stopped at hearing a growl coming from the vixen.
<Damn those heathens. Why can’t they just leave us alone? They’re the reason Stephan and I fled to Chakona with our cub. If it wasn’t bad enough that they burnt down our clinic here on Terra, now they take away unborn cubs’ parents.>
Francine laid a sympathetic hand on the enraged foxtaur’s shoulders, trying to calm hir down by rubbing it softly.
"Hush, I know all about that, and that H1 sympathizers killed your parents when you were a cub. But we have to be strong and think of the ones in our lives, especially the kits and new mates. How is Stephan by the way?"
Illumanati’s eyes twinkled at the thought of hir mate, busy back at home, working at the new clinic. He wanted to come along, but work was so busy, that he couldn’t leave. And besides, the Herm Haven Club was exclusively for herms.
<He's good, decided to stay at home coz he had so much work to be done.> shi replied, picking hir bags up. <So, what room am I in?>
"Room four on the ninth floor, ok. I’ll see you in an hour and a half?" Francine replied, repositioning hirself behind the desk once again.
<Sure, and I’ll try and cheer, what’s hir name?>
"Voxanna, shi’s only nineteen, from what I can gather so far."
<Poor child, shi’s going to need all the help that shi can get,> Nati said, heading towards the elevators.
"Yes shi will," Francine quietly said, looking at the still shot of the vulpine herm on hir computer screen, which was taken when shi first arrived and registered with hir new mate. The photo showed hir smiling, eyes twinkling with happiness and hope, clutching the male arctic wolf morph’s arm, as he had his arm around hir shoulder, poking his tongue out at the camera.
"Don’t be silly Daniel," shi said.
"And why not? I’m just happy to be with you," he replied, quickly kisslicking Voxanna’s ears, making hir giggle.
A single tear trickled down Francine’s cheek as shi remembered that conversation after the camera took that picture so young, so happy, expecting a new cub. New dreams, only to be dashed by some pointless callous human bigotry.
Illumanati exited the lift and made hir way to hir room, opening the door and depositing the bags on the floor. Normally, shi would unpack straight away, but the annoying fact of the pregnant herm vixen kept playing on hir mind.
<Well, no time like the present,> shi said, exiting hir room and made hir way to Voxanna’s room.
Hesitating only briefly, shi reached up and rang the door bell.
Shi then knocked on the door.
"Coming, coming! Hold your horses!" Replied a sweet but annoyed voice from behind the door. Shortly, it opened to reveal an obviously heavy pregnant vixen morph, fur wet and a towel around hir body.
"Yes?" shi asked, clearly agitated. Then relaxed by the sight of the foxtaur smiling.
<Evening, Voxanna, my name is Illumanati. Francine has asked me to come check up on you.>
"Shi has?" Voxanna said, clearly puzzled. "Whatever for?"
<Shi thought that I can do a check up on you and cub,> shi said, showing the medical combadge on hir vest.
"Oh! Umm sure. Please, come inside," the vixen said, moving aside, allowing the foxtaur to enter hir room.
"Umm, if you would excuse me for a moment, I’ll get dressed," shi said, slightly embarrassed.
<Not at all, please, take you time,> Nati said, settling down on the large mattress in the middle on the lounge.
Shortly, Voxanna returned wearing hir maternity gown, and hir hair was dry but slightly matted. Shi settled hirself down on the mattress in front of the foxtaur.
"Umm, can I ask you a question...? Illu.. Illa.."
<Illumanati, and yes, go ahead,> shi replied, smiling.
"Why are you speaking to me through telepathy?"
<Because it’s the only way I can, my vocal cords was damaged during a fire when I was a kit,> shi said, looking a bit sad.
"I’m terribly sorry to hear that. Bushfire?" Voxanna asked, looking at the foxtaur’s dual irises, intrigued by them.
<No, my home was burned to the ground by H1 sympathizers. I was hiding in the cellar at the time,> shi said, clearly upset about bringing up the memories.
Voxanna gasped and leaded forward to console the foxtaur, resting hir hand on Nati’s shoulder’s, rubbing it softly until shi started to murr.
"Humans are such evil creatures," shi said, letting a slight hatred slip through.
<Not all humans are so malicious and evil; there are some decent ones.>
"Not that I have met. All the ones that I’ve come across are greedy, selfish, rude arrogant bastards!" shi snapped suddenly, anger flashed across hir face.
Illumanati gently and firmly held Voxanna’s face and made hir look into hir eyes.
<It so happens that I am mated to a human,> shi said, smiling. <And he’s the most wonderful mate and sire to our cubs.>
Voxanna’s eyes just widened with shock then the look of guilt and embarrassment replaced hir anger.
"I.. I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean to say such horrible things," shi stammered.
<That’s okay, hun, you weren’t to know. And with what you’ve been through, I can’t blame you,> shi said, cuddling the pregnant herm fox.
"Umm you said OUR cubs, correct?" Voxanna asked, after Nati released hir from the hug.
<Yes dear, he’s also mated with my co-mate Sunrise, shi’s a chakat.>
"But, that’s impossible! I thought that humans can’t mate and have children with us furs?"
<Normally that would be correct, but with genetic alterations to the human male testes, he can interbreed with taurs or morphs, but never both. Although, I have heard of one human male who can get taurs and morphs pregnant quite easily,> shi said with a snicker.
"Really? Wow. So, did they come out okay? His cubs?" Voxanna asked, clearly interested in the subject.
<Yes, they were born quite healthy and normal. In fact, they here at the club, enjoying a swim.>
"Swim? Do they have a pool here as well?"
<Yes, and a theatre and games room.>
"Cool, umm do you know if there’s a dance hall as well?" shi asked, a twinkle in hir eye.
<I think so; I’ll just ask Francine. Be back in sec, ok?> Illumanati said.
"Sure…" Voxanna began, before jumping in surprise when the foxtaur just vanished with a slight gust of wind. Confused and a little worried, shi started searching hir room for the missing medic. No sooner had shi finished than Nati reappeared in front of hir, making hir yip in surprise.
"Wha.. How… what happened? How did you do that? What did you do?" shi babbled.
<Sorry, should have warned you about my teleport ability, I use it so often, that I forget that some people haven’t come across one before.>
"Teleport? Like in the federation starship’s transporters?"
<More or less> Nati replied, resting hir hand on Voxanna’s chest, feeling the slight elevated heart rate.
<Hmmm... heart rate’s raised, stress count high,> shi replied, as hir golden eye started to glow.
After ten minutes of running hir hands over Voxanna’s body, which included the swollen abdomen, shi concluded that the kit was healthy and fine, and the mother should get some rest and decent food.
<And for your mental health, lots of company,> shi said, with a smile.
"Ok, what on earth was all that about?" Voxanna asked, hands on hir hips.
<Sorry, I was using my other ability, I can heal and diagnose body sickness and injuries by my touch,> shi said.
"Really? Wow. That’s just amazing." the fox morph exclaimed. "So, um... is there a dance hall?"
<Shi said that there is one, and a karaoke as well.>
"Cool; I so want to dance and sing," shi said, excitedly.
<Hmm maybe shi can arrange that. Now, how about a swim before dinner?>
"Ok, but, what will I use for a swimsuit? I don’t think they have any in my size."
<Oh, that’s easily fixed,> Nati replied, going into the bathroom and came back out with a towel. <This’ll do.> shi replied, handing it to Voxanna.
"You’re not serious, are you?" shi said, looking at the foxtaur, puzzled.
<Of course I am. Oh! Didn’t you know, it optional to wear bathers? Most of the guests here just go in their fur.> Shi gave a chuckle.
"What? Starkers?" the pregnant fox exclaimed.
<Sure, wattle Lake Ayer?> shi joked, using an old Austen Tayshus quip.
"Eh?" shi replied, confused.
<Nothing; come on, let's go,> shi replied, holding on to the protesting vixen, who blinked once and found hirself on the roof, surrounded by furs of different types and sizes. Cubs, teenagers adults and long tails. Voxanna felt a little nauseous from the sudden teleportation, but the foxtaur rubbed hir belly, making hir feel calmness.
Looking around, shi saw a large pool and a smaller kiddie-size pool. Off to one side was a spa. Suddenly a squeal made hir look towards the pool, to see a husky morph floating in the air and come down into the water.
<Telekinesis,> Nati answered the vixen’s puzzled glance. <The ability to move objects with your mind. Looks like a class five or six to me.>
"Wow," Voxanna replied, watching the husky swim towards a skunktaur and dunk hym under.
<Now, where have those little rascals gone…? Ahh, there they are,> shi said, waving to two cubs in the small kiddie pool. Upon seeing hir wave, the youngsters got out and padded over, shaking vigorously, sending water spraying on the foxtaur.
"Hi momma, who’s your friend?" the young foxtaur asked, looking up at Voxanna.
<Stephy, this is Voxanna. Shi’s come to have a nice swim with us, so no rough-housing, ok?> shi replied, giving hir a stern look.
"Of course, momma, hello Voxy," Stephillum said, extending hir hand to be shook.
"Hello sweety. My, you are pretty. How old are you?" Voxanna asked, smiling, taking the hand and shaking it firmly.
"Seven. Are you going to be a momma too?" shi asked, noticing the large belly.
"Yes, wanna have a feel?" shi asked.
Looking at hir mom for approval, who nodded hir head, Stephillum reached up and touched the furry abdomen and giggled and yipped when shi felt it move.
"Wow! Cool!" shi said, running hir fingers slowly over the fur.
"Thank you, and who is this cutie hiding behind you?" shi asked, noticing the tiny cub hiding beneath the foxtaur, peering out from between hir front legs.
"Oh, that’s my sister. Hir name is Solarblaze," Stephy replied. "Shi’s a chakat. Hir momma is in town."
Bending down slowly, Voxanna called to the cub, who nervously hid hir face.
"It’s okay, sweety, I won’t bite," shi said, arms wide and palms up.
"Although shi might, especially strangers," the foxtaur sibling remarked, rubbing a sore arm.
"Oh, I think shi’ll behave with me," Voxanna replied, softly cooing at the cub, which turned to humming and then singing.
So, take my hand and walk with me.
Join with my soul for the life you need.
I shall be yours and you will be mine.
So feel my love, my joy and sorrow.
As I feel yours now and tomorrow."
The reaction was almost instantaneous the cub stopped hiding, and attentively came out and over to the vixen, arms outreached to be picked up. Voxanna cuddled the infant in hir arms, nursing the chakat, who started purring.
Both mother and daughter foxtaurs just stood, mouths open in surprise and wonder at the sight of Voxanna holding the purring felitaur, who was plucking at the obvious erect stained nipple.
Then they also noticed the quietness of the pool, as they realized that they had an audience.
"Whoa! Absolutely wonderful," a wolf morph replied, smiling.
"I concur," said the skunktaur, whose mate was holding hys arm with a blissful look in hir eyes.
"Encore, encore!" a chakat teenager cheered.
"Yes, please sing more," said a mouse morph named Peta.
Voxanna suddenly felt very shy and nervous from all the attention.
"I’m sorry, I can’t," shi said, quickly handing the cub to Illumanati, before dashing through the doors that led back into the building.
"What’s wrong? Why didn’t shi want to sing?" asked Darla, Peta’s mate.
<I’m sorry, Voxanna is getting over a loss, and shi needs support, not requests,> the foxtaur replied to the crowd.
Some sighed, others gave a heartfelt nod, while the younger ones just squealed and leapt back into the pool. Illumanati and Stephillum left as well, trying to locate the upset vixen. They didn’t have to go far though, as shi had slumped in a sofa, sobbing in hir hands.
Sitting down in front of hir, Illumanati rubbed hir hands softly. Stephillum carefully snuggled up next to hir on the sofa, placing hir arm around hir, rubbing hir left arm and resting hir head on Voxanna’s neck, murring.
<It’s okay, sweety. What’s wrong?> shi asked, looking at the distraught vixen’s face with hir dual-coloured eyes with concern.
"I’m sorry, it’s just silly. I get upset after singing that song, coz it reminds me of Daniel. He’s the mate I lost last year."
Upon hearing this bit of news, Stephy yipped and murred even more, hir eyes brimming with tears.
"Sorry Voxy, I didn’t know," shi said.
Voxanna looked at the young cub and smiled, reaching over to give hir a hug.
"That’s alright. Sorry to have interrupt your swim," shi said, apologetically.
<Hey, no sweat. It was time for them to get out anyway, dinner will be ready soon. What do you say to dining with us tonight?>
"Sure, I would love too. I’m famished," shi said, as hir stomach growl, making the small chakat cub growl as well, thinking there was a monster somewhere. Upon seeing this, Voxanna and Nati laughed out loud.
Soon, morph and taur walked arm in arm to the elevators, with the cubs trailing behind.
To be continued.
Copyright © 2010 Illumanati Glazer.
The Chakat Universe and the Double H Club are the creation of Bernard Doove and are used with his permission.
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