***Author's Notes***

This story was written back in 1989, during my final year of high school, as a submission for a short story contest. I didn't win, but my Grade 12 English teacher did think I had potential and as a result, I got hooked on the notion of writing short stories. I'll let you be the judge as to how well the story was.


Lone Wolf

As the odd looking triple moon hung in it's lazy orbit, a tarnished spacecraft sped towards the planet's surface in the ebony night. The pilot declined to follow the landing procedures in the Planetary Regulations and brought his ship in without registering. The canopy sighed open and he stepped out into the glare of the lights situated around the landing pad. Taking a deep breath of the cool night air, he turned back to the craft and removed his baggage.

He walked briskly to the Portmaster's Office and hurriedly stepped inside. He quickly scanned the room before walking forward and ringing the bell. Immediately, a young man in a red jumpsuit appeared from behind beads hanging across a doorway.

"Good evening, sir. How may I help you?" the young man said airily, regarding the size of his client. The pilot assessed the Portmaster's attire with distaste, for his choice of clothing was terrible. The Portmaster's beady eyes checked the pilot for some sort of identification. The pilot enjoyed watching the Portmaster's reaction at the sight of the awesome blaster holstered on his left side.

"I want to leave my ship here and make arrangements for accommodations within the city," the pilot rumbled. The Portmaster was astonished to hear a voice so deep and low. All that Wolf wanted to do was get a good nights rest before moving on.

"I'll need some information first," the Portmaster said. He removed a pad and light pen from underneath the desk, activating a hidden surveillance camera installed behind a portrait of a solar system. "Name and planet of origin."

"You may call me Wolf, from the planet Earth," Wolf said calmly. The Portmaster stopped suddenly and looked up to gaze intently at him. Wolf thought that he would perhaps call the interstellar police. In that case, Wolf would have to kill him; right here, right now.

"We don't like Earthers around here, mister. I would advise you to watch yourself or you'll wind up dead. Understand?" the Portmaster said harshly. Wolf classified him as the kind of person who deserved to have a blaster shoved up his nostril and the trigger pulled. This time, he restrained himself.

"I don't care. I just want some place to sleep, some food and water, and then I'll be out of here," Wolf replied, his eyes hooded. The Portmaster suddenly looked frightened of the Terran and quickly wrote down what Wolf had told him. "My ship's name is the Space Shepherd and the registration number is 710709. Anything else?" Wolf stated.

"Not about you but how long do you plan on staying on Johnson's Planet?" the Portmaster replied nervously.

Wolf replied quickly. "Three days and two nights. I'll be gone by sunrise of the third day."

"Here's your hotel key and food disk," the Portmaster mumbled after Wolf handed him some gold credits. He handed Wolf a key with an electronic tag and a small blue disk. "Should you need anything else, you know where to find me." With that, the Portmaster disappeared back behind his beads. Wolf watched his departure for a moment before he shrugged and went back outside.

The blackness of the night clung to him and even though the three moons were full, they shed no light on the planet. He remembered Earth's moon with its fullness and beauty so vividly that he wanted to return home. However, the logical side of him reminded the romantic part that such a move would be suicide. Shaking himself back to the reality of the planet he was on, Johnson's Planet, the Portmaster had said, he threw his baggage in the back seat of a flitter. Settling himself behind the controls, he lifted the small craft off the ground and whisked himself into the city.

After he parked the flitter in a hangar, he gathered his belongings and went inside the hotel. There did not appear to be many people moving through the concourse. He made his way to the reception desk and stopped short. Sitting behind a computer was the most gorgeous woman Wolf had ever encountered. She wore her soft blond hair spilling over her shoulders. A cascade of beauty, Wolf let himself think romantically again. Wolf could not help but notice her fair complexion, high cheekbones, and her full and sensuous lips. He swallowed a lump in his throat as he walked up in front of her and awaited her acknowledgement.

"May I help you?" she said sweetly, stopping her work to look up at him. A twinkle sparkled in her eyes as she sized up the new visitor. A smile played across her lovely features. She glanced over the muscles rippling beneath the black suede, the black leather holster securing his hand blaster, and the black leather boots that supported the lower half of his muscular legs. She paid particular attention to the shortly cropped black hair and the opacity of his obsidian eyes; the eyes, mysterious yet strong.

"Room 1701, please," Wolf managed to utter. He suddenly felt foolish for stuttering before such beauty. He wished he had kept his mouth shut and just thrown the key tag at her.

"Room 1701, yes, sir," she breathed. The woman lifted herself from her seat and approached him. "Normally, the customer is assisted by the bellhop to locate their room, but in your case, I'll personally see you there." She gently removed the tag from Wolf's grasp. Wolf desperately fought the erection he could feel forming. Sultriness encompassing her every move, she walked down the corridor to the turbo-lift. Wolf stared at the patterns in the carpet on the floor of the lift as it climbed. Upon reaching the required level, she silently walked down the corridor with Wolf trailing behind.

Stopping at Wolf's room and unlocking the door, she walked in to reveal a lush interior with over-padded furniture. She beckoned him to enter, but Wolf felt apprehensive about the ease of the flow of events. He looked up and down the corridor before entering, making sure the door was locked behind him.

Wolf immediately unholstered his blaster while he checked out the room. Scanning the street below, he saw no one walking the streets. He observed on all the interconnecting balconies between the rooms. He was puzzled at first, then he continued his search to ensure that there were neither bugs nor surveillance equipment.

"What in the name of hell are you doing here?" Nancy finally asked. Wolf gave her an icy glance before completing his search. He holstered his blaster and sorted through his baggage. "Do you have any idea the risk you're taking by being here?" she inquired, trying to keep her emotions in check.

"I knew you were here and I also knew I could count on you to help me," Wolf answered, finding the power-pack for his near depleted blaster. He left it on the end table while at the same time flinging his tunic across the bed. "I need your help now more than ever, Nancy. Can I depend on you?" he asked.

"You know damn well you can," she replied, grabbing him by the head and giving him a lingering kiss. Wolf held her tightly, drinking in her sweet scent. She sat down heavily next to him on the bed and looked up at him with pleading eyes. "Now that you are here, can you please tell me what's going on?"

Wolf took a deep breath before starting. "You already know that I was part of the Terran Special Forces Legion before all of this started. I was genetically engineered and trained to be an assassin, shock trooper, or whatever they needed me for all rolled into one. Do you remember the Martian Seige two years ago?" Nancy nodded quickly.

"During that incident, we learned important and crippling information about the new United Worlds that they did not want made public. To ensure total secrecy, they had us hunted and killed," Wolf growled, sounding dangerous. Nancy could see the black fire raging in his eyes. He stood forcefully and walked to the balcony window. "There are all but a few of us remaining now." Looking down into the square, he noticed a pub. A novel idea came to mind. He turned back to her and picked up his tunic.

"Where are we going?" Nancy asked as he took her small hand.

"To have a final good time together," he replied.

Many hours later, the Portmaster was trying to trace the Space Shepherd's travels when the door was suddenly kicked in by a creature that resembled a rhino, but that was where the similarity ended. It stood on two powerful legs and clutched in its massive paw was a laser cannon-rifle. A second reptilian creature entered and stopped at the desk.

"Who owns that Canadian-class fighter out there?!" the reptilian shouted. He squinted at the Portmaster, who cowered in fear for his life.

"S-s-some guy named Wolf!" the Portmaster exclaimed.

"Where is he now?"

"He-he's gone into the c-c-city! He said he'd be here three days!!" the Portmaster screamed, his eyes darting back and forth to see where the rifle was aimed. Presently, it was aimed at the ceiling. The reptilian looked over at the rhino and nodded his head as he stepped out.

"What now, Dillard?" asked the rhino.

"Toast," was his reply. The rhino smiled a toothy grin and lowered his weapon. The Portmaster screamed hysterically as the rhino stepped backwards out the door and pumped two rounds into the office. The entire building exploded, throwing pieces of the Portmaster and his trade all over the landing field.

Unbeknownst to the men, a sensor within the fighter craft had been activated by all the fireplay. Within nanoseconds, it sent a signal to its owner for his protection.

Wolf and Nancy had shared a few drinks and were talking about what they had did in the other's absence. Wolf noticed the minute changes in Nancy's facial features: she was attempting to bring up sensitive material.

"Wolf, two years ago there were 250 warriors of the TSF. You mentioned back at the hotel that there were only a few left. How do you know that?" she asked softly. Wolf smiled at her.

"I talked briefly to one of my 'brothers', Apollo, at Charon. He said that there were still some Legionnaires left that haven't been eliminated," Wolf said solemnly. "There is hope for us yet, Nancy. We just have to get the public's attention to let them know what the United Worlds is doing to us but no one believes us. It's frustrating!"

Nancy was about to say something when she noticed Wolf's gaze seem to go vacant for just an instant before he snapped back to reality. "Quickly, we must return to the hotel," Wolf growled, grabbing Nancy and making a break for the door.

"What is it? What's wrong?" she asked as they raced for the door.

"United Worlds Security is here," he stated. As they approached the door, a huge bear-like creature blocked their way. The bear snarled and licked his lips.

"Your girlfriend looks like she could use a real man," the bear said. Wolf didn't stop running. When the bear reached out an arm to bar the door, Wolf clenched his fist. Five twelve-inch steel claws leapt from their housings above Wolf's knuckles and cut the bear's arm off at the elbow. Wolf pulled Nancy through before she could get covered in blood. They ran to the hotel and locked themselves in Wolf's room.

Wolf checked out the balcony window to see if they had been followed before he made his way back to Nancy's side. She was trying the regain her breath when she saw a rhino land on the balcony and raise a laser rifle. She screamed as Wolf dove, catching her and tumbling off the bed. The stray laser shot tore into the bed, spraying water everywhere. Wolf scooped up his blaster and squeezed off two bursts towards the balcony, managing to hit his opponent squarely in the chest. He checked around to see if there was another. He started moving Nancy towards the door.

"Go, Nancy! Get out of here!" Wolf yelled, letting off another three bursts at the shattered window.

"I won't leave without you!" she cried.

"Get out of here, dammit! I'll catch up to you!" Wolf growled. Nancy raced down the hallway, into the awaiting arms of Dillard. She looked up into his face and screamed. Dillard laughed manically.

Wolf stepped out of the room and aimed his blaster. "Let her go, Dillard! She's not the one you want! It's me you want dead, not her!" Wolf yelled.

"Quite right," Dillard said, firing his laser. At the same time, Wolf tried to hit him but missed. The shot from Dillard struck him in the shoulder and slammed him against the wall. The laser had a sleeper in it. Wolf could feel it taking over his desire to fight. Dillard corrected his aim at Wolf, who was trying to fight the drug in his system. Wolf tried to scream, yell, anything but his throat and body wouldn't respond.

"Watch, dear Nancy....your mutant-hero is about to meet whatever deity he prays to!" Dillard chanted. Nancy tried to turn her head away from the sight of Wolf laying against the wall, but Dillard forced her to watch. The last thing Wolf saw was Dillard smiling like a Cheshire cat as he raised his weapon again.

He fired.

| Lone Wolf Trilogy | Lone Wolf II |

Sentinel's Kyoto Castle - Lone Wolf
Layout and Design: 1999-2011 Gruesome, Inc. Productions
Revised: 27 April 2011