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Scales

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She was furious. Anger dripped from her like saliva from a dog's mouth,  fists clenched like bared fangs, eyes glittering, glaring at the object of her utter revulsion. Her antennae perked forward once, smelling the air, before pulling back, trembling in a sense of indignation. 

The king, and the queen, they were- she couldn't stand them. How could nobody see what she did? How was she the only one who saw how corrupt they were, how horrible they were? Had Khybex had a mouth, it would be borderline snarling at this point as she glared up at the castle in front of her. Wings shaking, she turned away from the castle, looking to the town in front of her. 

They had sat idly by and let those two become the king and queen. Her hands relaxed.

They hadn't said a thing, hadn't spoken up. Her hands began to glow. 

They deserved to pay. The soft pink glow of her healing magic- used to save so many lives, so many lives under this new reign and the reign before, so many who hadn't been able to be here today, not because of her but because of the sovereignty- started to dim, sparks and crackling sounds like snappers freckling the glowing light. It started to turn a brilliant, insidious violet, exoskeleton shining like claws. They wanted to give this power to someone who didn't deserve it? They wanted to pass her over?  Her, who would be such a better leader than them, who would have been the right choice, who had seen firsthand as a healer what needed to be done. The people had overlooked her, given her not even a second glance. 

Well, they'd be giving her more than a second glance today. 

Lifting all six of her hands, the light struck forward, jagged arcs and light like claws scraping the sky jerking towards the closest civilian. They had their antennae forward in concern, their wings held back in slight fear. The scales on them trembled, reflecting the shine of the light that had just struck them in their chest, wings flicking out automatically. 

Khybex watched.

The onlooker shuddered, falling to their knees, wings and antennae trembling with something other than the rage that crashed through Khybex. Their scales stood on end, hands fanning the air desperately. In the next moment, the oddest sound crept from them- it racked their body, moving them involuntarily forward in a harsh half-rocking motion. It was... A cough. 

One hand found its way towards their face, antennae whirling around in circles, wings spread out in shock. Khybex watched, half fascinated and half revolted. 
This was the first chimera. The first one.

 

Not long after that, the disease spread. That was what her magic could do- create diseases, illnesses of change, of stunningly contagious plagues. 

And, perhaps, she started to regret it when she heard of the first nursery hit. How a chimera had transformed in front of their doors, collapsing on the ground after ambling down the street. How they had smashed the glass of a window, claws leaving gouges in the hardened stone. It was detailed in the news. The article detailed how many deaths, injuries, and damages occurred. It detailed how many caretakers and how many children were hurt. 

The next cycle she found that the off-planet pods were full. Widespread panic were supposed to mean more restrictions- but the plague spread so wildly, so fast, and hit so hard, the underground market was quick to offer illegal trips that claimed to leave faster than the officially sanctioned spaceports.

Some people who left on those illegal spaceports reported flu-like symptoms. 

Some spaceships were never heard from again once they left the planet.

 

She couldn't live here anymore, seeing the aftermath of her decision. She couldn't stay here, couldn't watch as the kingdom she loved and wanted to adore her fell to a harsher fate than she wanted for them now. She couldn't face the consequences of her actions; and as cowardly as it was, she needed to leave. Khybex needed to go. Besides, undoubtedly soon someone would be sent to find her, to try to catch her. 
Maybe if she bought enough time to synthesize a cure, to develop a less-permanent strain, she could come back- be adored, again. The lives of those dead wouldn't be saved but maybe she could save what was left, use the remnants of chaos to her advantage. 

 

So she boarded her ship, having been of relatively fine social standing prior to the crisis. She activated the ship's AI, directing them to take her off planet- to the outreaches of the galaxy, if need be, but to get her away from here. Khybex wanted to be anywhere but here, anywhere but this place infected with death and poison. The land seemed almost draped with a cloak of miasma from what she had remembered before- and it was all her fault. It was her who had caused this. Khybex, the 'mad scientist', the jealous one. Her hands stuttered on the dashboard, shaking in some form of crying. Her wings flitted slightly, drawing the air in. Through her sobs, she didn't notice that she had a follower- another rogue ship.