Actions

Work Header

The Lion's Vessel

Chapter Text

When Yorak had been offered the chance to accompany Prince Alfor on his quest to find Oriande, he had been ecstatic. To be handpicked by the future king for such an honorable expedition was almost every Altean’s dream. And despite the fact that Yorak was a knight and not a scholar, he too was excited for the chance to show his worth.

It was a small group only consisting of six Alteans; the prince, a medic, two knights, and two scholars. The expedition had lasted nearly seven phoebs, the hope of finding the mysterious Oriande decreasing as time dragged on. However after finding ancient texts from their ancestors, they were able to make a breakthrough.

Their journey led them to the Patrulian Zone, a literal ship graveyard. The wreckages of past attempts at entering the white hole littered around them in a grim display. From the knowledge they gathered during their expedition, Alfor believed they had to journey into the white hole. It was a mad idea, a literal death sentence. Yet they would not be deterred. At the suggestion of one of the crew mates, they embarked on a smaller ship meant for quick navigation instead of their main ship. One of the six man team stayed behind for precautions, dwindling them down to five.

The journey to the white hole took longer than anticipated and by the time they reached it, they were entirely unprepared for what they saw. Before their eyes the head of a massive lion appeared, the sound of the roar echoing in their little ship and blasting them back.

Their power was knocked out by a bright beam from the lion’s maw and like that they were drifting amongst the wreckage. Once the shock of the sudden attack dwindled, everyone scrambled to try and get the ship running again. In the faint glow given by the emergency lights, the Alteans on board made a shocking discovery. Out of the five of them, three appeared to have their marks glowing. Yorak was one of those three, his crimson markings now glowing alongside Alfor and Ukora.

“What…?” Ukora reached out, brushing his fingers against Yorak’s markings. “Your marks are glowing…?”

“Yours as well.” Frowning, Yorak looked at the other Alteans on board. He tilted his head, “My prince. It appears only Ukora, you, and I have glowing marks.”

Alfor was holding his chin, brows scrunched as he thought hard about this. Suddenly realization dawned on his face, his eyes widening and his face lighting up. “The Mark of the Chosen! Of course!” He turned around in order to face the direction of the white hole. “What we just encountered! It was the Guardian of Oriande, I’m sure of it! Do you not recall those texts we read? Only those with the marks are worthy of entering Oriande, all others will be cast out.”

“S-so does that mean… I’m worthy?” Ukora’s eyes widened in panic and he placed his hands to his cheeks. “B-but I’m no scholar! Or a warrior! I’m a simple medic how can I…?”

Yorak reached out and grasped Ukora’s shoulder. He offered the skittish Altean a small smile, “Medic or not, you’ve been deemed worthy. You shouldn’t question the Guardian’s decision.”

 Alfor laughed and gave a hearty smack to Yorak’s shoulder. “Well said! If you have been deemed worthy by the Guardian of Oriande then that is that! There’s no use trying to decide if you’re unfit or not. It wasn’t up to us to decide, it was up to the Guardian. And the Guardian deems you worthy.”

And that was the end of that argument. With newfound determination, Alfor and the other two donned on suits to survive the harshness of space. Then with little fanfare they embarked towards the white hole using transport pods. The compact devices were not intended for long-ranged flying, but hopefully they would get them in and out of the white hole without a problem.

When the lion’s head appeared once more, Yorak was convinced that it was going to change its mind. That it would deem him unfit to learn about the ancient alchemy of Altea simply because he was rasher than his fellow Alteans. Yet Yorak found himself letting out the breath he had been holding when the endless white around them gave way to a pinkish hue. As their surroundings finally registered, Yorak couldn’t believe it. They had done it, they had successfully made it to Oriande.

They didn’t use the transport pods to take them to the Temple of the Alchemist. After all, if their only means of transportation ran out of juice, they’d be stranded. So instead they had to settle on one of the floating pillars of land and make their own way across the unique terrain.

By the time they made it into the temple, Yorak, Ukora, and Alfor were breathing heavily with sweat trailing down their faces. They only had a few doboshes of rest before a deep rumbling caught their attention. At the end of the hall was the Guardian, standing tall and proud and staring at them with glowing eyes. When it turned and descended down the flight of stairs, the trio knew to follow.

The end of the stairs led them to a wide room with an unbelievable sight. Ukora gasped, rushing forward and standing at the base of one of the large statues. “Oh my!”

“The Sages of Oriande…” Yorak and Alfor both looked at the statues in disbelief.

Tossing a grin at Yorak, Alfor chuckled. “Not just a story anymore, now are they?”

Yorak gave a begrudging grin, rolling his eyes instead of responding. However the sight of the statues beginning to move instantly wiped the smile from his face.

“Look out!” Yorak rushed forward, tackling Ukora and knocking him out of the way from an oncoming stone staff. Yorak grabbed him by the back of his suit, hauling him up and out of harm’s way. Yorak and Ukora both looked up at the sound of another statue moving, the two shouting out a “your highness!” just as they caught sight of Alfor.

Said prince was dodging a staff swung at him, rolling under the feet of the Sage and sliding across the floor. Yet the statue moved as if it was a living creature. It turned sharply, staff brought up to strike down at Alfor once more. However before it even got the chance to, Alfor reached into one of his pockets and held up the compass stone they had found during their expedition. Suddenly the statue froze, as did the others that moved.

Gradually its aggressive stance diminished and it instead leaned down. When the Sage held out its hand, Alfor instantly knew what it was asking for. He gave up the compass stone, the little object glowing before it projected the map that had led them to Oriande. Seemingly satisfied, the Sage closed their hand and stood. They returned to their throne just as the other statues did.

All was silent as the three Alteans processed what had just happened. Alfor was the first to break the quiet, whistling low and laughing. He ran a hand through his hair and pushed his bangs from his face. “Well that was thrilling. Good thing the compass stone worked! I honestly didn’t think it would. It’d be pretty disappointing if we were killed before we even discovered the secrets.”

Yorak sighed and rolled his eyes at Alfor’s casual brush off. Despite this he found himself nodding, “It would have been shameful indeed.”

By his side Ukora lightly touched Yorak’s arm, staring down at his feet and stuttering. “Y-Yorak, thank you for saving me. If I had known that the Sages could move, I wouldn’t have stood so close.”

“Think nothing of it,” Yorak bit the inside of his cheek to refrain from further comment. In his youth he might’ve said something sharp and uncalled for, but he was better than that. It wasn’t Ukora’s fault. Though if such things happened again in the future, Yorak knew he couldn’t save Ukora again. His main focus would have to be on protecting Alfor. He had moved instinctually this time, but next time he couldn’t afford such a mistake. If Alfor died while Yorak was too busy protecting someone else, he’d never forgive himself. He would be unable to face the people of Altea and tell them he had failed in protecting their future king.

“Well come on then! We’re already this far! Might as well keep going.”

Alfor’s enthusiasm was infections. He powered forward, Ukora and Yorak having no choice but to follow. They once again descended another flight of stairs, this time coming into a room bereft of anything but two pillars on the far end.

“Be careful.” Yorak instructed, eyes darting around for any possible traps.

In front of the pillars the lion appeared, chuffing once before it nodded its head and faded just as quickly as it had come. Suddenly the door slammed down behind them and the ceiling began to fall at a slow yet threatening pace.

“Another trap?!” Ukora exclaimed, eyes wide as he looked at their encroaching doom.

Despite his initial panic, it was Ukora who realized the pillars were in fact quite similar to a teludav. Because Alfor was the only one of them that had experience using a teludav, he was the one that stood and placed his hands atop each pillar. His eyes scrunched up in concentration, casting out his energy and feeling for something.

Suddenly a pool of white light appeared above them, swallowing up the room in a matter of ticks. Yorak closed his eyes as the light became too bright to bare. He didn’t know how long his eyes were closed for, but by the time he opened them, he realized that he was now in an entirely different place.

The endless realm around him glittered faintly and seemed to be made up of water and clouds. The sky blended into the ground and nothing significant stood out against the horizon. The one thing Yorak noticed first was that he was alone.

“Your majesty?! Ukora?!”

As he twisted around for what seemed like the hundredth time, Yorak suddenly found himself facing the Guardian. It stared at him just as he stared back, the two of them unmoving. Suddenly it crouched, growling threateningly. Yorak’s heart was pounding and his hand moved towards where he always kept his sword. His first instinct was to draw his blade and fight. Yet Yorak knew deep down that it would be foolish to even try. He could not win, there wasn’t even a chance.

In a realm of infinite clouds with him and the lion being the only occupants, Yorak knew nothing of his surroundings or his opponent. He was at a clear disadvantage no matter how you looked at it. And besides, Yorak didn’t have his weapon to begin with. Alfor had felt it would be better if they didn’t bring weapons into a sacred place, so Yorak had left his saber back on the ship.

Gritting his teeth, Yorak broke eye contact with the lion and instead lowered his gaze. He forced his muscles to relax as he slowly kneeled. Though he didn’t see it, the lion’s ears angled forward as if it was curious at his actions.

Yorak squared his shoulders and spoke in a clear voice, “I am Yorak of Altea. I find myself in your domain, ready to face your judgement.”

He could sense when the Guardian began moving. Yorak tensed and held his breath as the entity walked on silent paws. When the ghostly white legs of the lion finally entered his field of vision, Yorak lifted his head to look up.

His eyes locked with the lion’s and he felt his breath catch. The Guardian rumbled low in its throat and closed its eyes. Then ever so gently it leaned forward and pressed its forehead to Yorak’s. He gasped and a moment later the strain on his muscles loosened.

Violet eyes slipped shut and Yorak pressed back against the lion’s fluffy white head. Each breath in felt like he was inhaling the crisp air of falling snow. It hurt his lungs but also sent a soothing chill, leaving a confusing duel of sensations.

Words filtered into Yorak’s head, hundreds of voices both male and female overlapping in perfect harmony. Yorak couldn’t discern what they were saying, they were speaking an old form of Altean, too old for him to dare try repeating.

As if sensing he couldn’t understand, the voices gradually died down and instead were replaced by images. They formed words without sound, offering Yorak an understanding through sight and feeling alone. It felt like phoebs had passed but in reality it had only been a few ticks.

When the onslaught of visuals finally died down Yorak raised his hands in order to hold the Guardian’s face. He breathed out slowly and opened his eyes.

“I accept.”

///

Yorak was the last to leave the temple, Alfor and Ukora already standing in the center courtyard. Ukora was bouncing excitedly as he babbled about what he’d witnessed, his eyes wide and shining bright. Alfor seemed to be just as hyped, quickly tossing back his own excited ramblings. The two of them paused and looked up at the sight of Yorak, their eyes widening.

“Yorak… Your hair!”

“And your marks!”

When Yorak had entered Oriande, he had looked as he usually did. Skin slightly darkened from his time spent training under the sun and his hair blacker than the void of space. His crimson Altean marks were bright and complimented the swirling purple of his eyes.

Yet now things were different. Yorak’s appearance had changed thanks to the blessing he received from the Guardian. His hair and markings had lost their colour and were now a snowy white, matching the glowing lion standing at his side.

Blinking slowly, Yorak pet the lion as it pressed its head to his hip. He offered a small smile to Ukora and Alfor before bowing at the waist. “My prince. It would seem that… I have been given a far different blessing than you and Ukora.”

The lion seemed to realize that Yorak needed time to speak with his fellow Alteans. It let out a small rumble before disappearing from sight. Yorak moved down the steps and stood before Alfor and Ukora.

“The Guardian spoke to me… Or well it tried to. It asked me to carry out a mission. I am not too sure as to what the mission is, but it said I would know when the time comes.” Yorak looked down at his hands, slowly clenching them into fists. “The Guardian cannot leave Oriande. It is tied to this realm so it personally cannot interfere with the outside world. It asked me to be a vessel for it, to carry a piece of it and fulfill its will. I was honored to even be given such a chance, so of course I accepted this request. And in doing so it bestowed upon me a piece of itself. That is why my hair and marks have changed. It is to signify my status as the Guardian’s vessel.”

Alfor had listened in silence with a frown growing more prominent the longer Yorak spoke. He crossed his arms and sighed, “So the Guardian decided you were to act as its living puppet? And you aren’t even aware of what the Guardian wants?”

Yorak shook his head, “No. But I want to trust the Guardian. It found me worthy enough for such a task, I want to prove that it did not make the wrong choice.”

Ukora hesitated a moment before he stepped forward, glancing between Yorak and Alfor. “So… What does that mean? Is it sending you somewhere to find the mission?”

Once more Yorak shook his head. He took a step back and clenched his hands tightly. “No, I will not be leaving Oriande. Not yet anyways. The Guardian said that my mission has not even begun to exist yet. I am to stay here until I am needed.”

Yorak bit the inside of his cheek before he knelt on one leg and bowed deeply to Alfor. “My prince and future king, I beg of you to forgive me but I cannot join you on the journey home. I ask that you let my mothers know that… I’m sorry I could not return.”

Alfor’s expression grew complex for a moment before a small smile appeared. He walked to Yorak and reached down, clasping a hand over his shoulder. “Stand, Yorak. There is no need to kneel.” He waited for Yorak to rise before placing both hands on his shoulders, squeezing Yorak and smiling brightly. “You have been granted a chance to do something I’ve never even thought possible! This is a grand honor, one I am delighted to see you take, my friend. Though I wish you could join us, I understand that this is indeed where our paths have to part. You are a good warrior and a good man, Yorak. I am proud to see you be granted such a chance and I know your mothers will be as well.”

Yorak smiled, “Thank you, your majesty.”

Ukora rushed over and placed his own hand on Yorak’s arm. “Yes! Prince Alfor is right! Do not worry, Yorak! I know you’ll do great things with this gift! And whatever your mission is, I’m positive you’ll succeed with flying colours!”

That prompted Yorak to grin even wider. He nodded his head, lifting a hand and brushing it along Ukora’s markings and then to his ears. Ukora returned the gesture before stepping back, his eyes watery. Alfor patted Yorak’s shoulder before repeating the same gesture Ukora and Yorak did. Yorak hesitated for a moment before he touched Alfor’s markings and then his ear.

Yorak swallowed heavily and took another step back, “You will do wonderful things, my prince. And Ukora, the knowledge you’ve gained here will surely help you in your research.” Yorak said, offering his own watery smile to the two. “I thank you for everything we’ve been through.”

It was hard to say goodbye, but there was simply nothing else keeping Ukora and Alfor from staying. They had their own things to take care of, just as Yorak had his. He watched as they gradually disappeared from sight, his chest aching the whole time. With a heavy sigh he turned around and returned to the temple, the Guardian appearing beside him and offering a comforting rumble. Together the two of them disappeared inside, the doors closing behind them.

///

Yorak gradually opened his eyes, consciousness drifting in bit by bit. A quick flash in his mind told him that it had been quite some time since he last awoke. Shuffling off the raised platform, Yorak seemed to misjudge the height of the thing he had called a bed for the past… Who knew how long.

Standing, Yorak also realized that his robes that had previously fit now hung around him like a sea of fabric. He was utterly confused at this predicament and struggled to pull himself from the folds of white and red. Yorak kept a cloak around himself to protect his decency and stumbled over towards one of the walls. They were extremely reflective, polished till they shined. It wouldn’t be hard to see his reflection and discern what was going on with him.

However what he saw had Yorak stopping in his tracks and blinking in surprise.

“Oh.”

Yorak was no longer his full 25 deca-phoebs, he barely looked to even be a full 5. “Guardian?” Even his voice was as squeaky and high as when he was a child! Just what was going on?

Beside him the Guardian appeared. It now towered over him like a colossal titan. Bending down its head and nudging Yorak’s, the lion stuck out its incorporeal tongue and brushed it over his cheek. Despite the Guardian being transparent, Yorak still felt the sensation of a lick.

He blinked at the onslaught of images that passed through his mind. “You made me younger by warping my quintessence? I didn’t know you could do that! But why would you…?” Yorak frowned and stared at the Guardian as it communicated silently. “So I could learn? Does this have to do with my mission…? But I thought it already started!”

The Guardian tilted its head, Yorak pursing his lips at its response. “My mission really didn’t start at that time? What does that even mean? ‘They weren’t born yet’?” Suddenly his eyes widened, realization dawning just as fast as he had asked the question. “You mean… The new Paladins?”

The nod he received had Yorak reeling, “So you made me younger in order to go to their planet and learn? Why?”

He was met with silence, the Guardian not responding. Yorak knew this meant that the Guardian also didn’t know the reason, only that something it saw in the future indicated that Yorak had to be younger. Already used to the Guardian’s sporadic ability, Yorak merely sighed and resigned himself to dealing with his youth all over again. The Shifting was going to be a pain to deal with though. Yorak was not at all looking forward to it.

He gathered up his robe and left the room. Behind him the Lion trotted after, not going as fast as it normally did simply to keep pace with Yorak’s shorter legs. He emerged from the temple and into the courtyard. Around him the eternally pinkish sky still shone as bright as ever, this realm never knowing the darkness of night.

He walked briskly in order to reach the construct in the middle of the courtyard. It was crouched low to the ground, the gleam of its white frame reflecting the light and giving it an ethereal glow. Before him was a mechanical lion, the appearance quite similar to the Guardian beside him. From the blue and yellow markings to the bulky frame around the neck resembling a mane and the ear tips being longer and tinted violet, everything was to mimic the white lion.

In his time on Oriande, Yorak had woken from his slumber a total of five times. Three of those times were when Alfor came to visit. Yorak could see from him alone how time outside of Oriande was beginning to pass. The first visit he was prince, the next he was king. And by the final visit he was a father on the brink of a glorious creation.

From Alfor’s visits Yorak had learned all about what had been happening during his time away. He’d learned of the marvelous feats Ukora had done for healing, about Allura, his parents, and about the comet that had landed on Daibazaal. From there Alfor began describing his intentions for the comet and how he was going to use the Guardian as inspiration for their designs.

That had been the last time Yorak had seen Alfor.

 Yorak closed his eyes, images flashing before his mind. From the visions the Guardian had given him, he knew that the Voltron lions Alfor created were far larger than the ship Yorak built. The White Lion would barely come up to the other lion’s shoulders. If anything of his visions were to go by, the only lion closest to its size was the Red Lion, and even then Yorak had a feeling it was still smaller.

Yorak moved over to the machine and stood in front of it. He felt something press against his back and Yorak sighed. “I know… Even when I am out there, a piece of you will always be with me, even if I cannot hear you. Let us hope there never comes a time where I will need it.”

It wasn’t a farewell, there was no need for one. Yorak would always be connected to the Guardian no matter the distance. Even if the piece of the Guardian inside of him were to disappear, there would still be a link. Without looking back Yorak walked his way up to the lion and placed a hand to its muzzle. From his palm a soft glowing light arose and spread out across the machine. With a deep rumble it opened its mouth.

In the cockpit of the lion the only things of note were a single chair and an outcropping for the controls. However instead of buttons and levers, there was nothing but a flat panel. Though similar to the lions Alfor built, this one was made to be quite different. It was designed without any of the ore Alfor gained from the comet, it did not have a “spirit” of its own. It was not made to be independent, it was made to simply exist. Yorak would not be controlling a machine, he would become the machine.

Yorak wrapped his robe tightly around himself before settling into the chair. He frowned when he realized that the panel was not at all close to him. He let out a sharp sigh in frustration. Honestly he didn’t see the reason he needed to be so young to “learn”.

Standing up from his seat he leaned forward and smacked both of his hands down on the panel. Instantly the smooth platform lit up in a bright white hue. Blue text appeared on the screen and flittered past before disappearing a moment later.

Yorak took in a deep breath and closed his eyes. He called forth his quintessence and pushed it into the cool panel beneath him. It spread out to every part of the machine like the tide washing over. The next moment he opened his eyes, Yorak was standing up as the lion. He shook out his body and looked down at the small form of the Guardian. Yorak dipped his head, the action mimicked before the Guardian disappeared like mist.

Taking that as a sign to leave, Yorak stood and leapt from the ground. He had learned to fly as the White Lion back when he had finished building it, so Yorak was very used to maneuvering in his new “body”. Likewise, he was also keenly aware of the few abilities he had while piloting. Though they weren’t much, Yorak still considered them to be quite useful.

His jaws parted and a roar ripped through the air. Suddenly a white wormhole appeared in front of him. The moment Yorak flew through it, he found himself in an entirely unfamiliar solar system.

Now where to?” He thought as he floated along.

Not a moment later a small tug on his mind had Yorak looking past the ringed planet. He followed the sensation, knowing it was the Guardian telling him where to go. The feeling increased the closer he got, Yorak’s heart beating wildly in his chest when it took him to a planet spotted in various shades of blue, white, and green.

The pull guided him down into the planet and over the vast lands, Yorak remaining high enough so he wouldn’t be spotted past the clouds. Yorak didn’t want to alarm the people of the planet, not knowing how advanced they were with alien races. The last thing he wanted to do was cause a panic and then have to deal with the fallout.

However Yorak longed to fly low enough to see the surface. It’d been so long since he saw an environment other than Oriande. He had the strong urge to explore this new place and learn all he could. What were the inhabitants like? What were their architect like? Their military? What about animals? Plants?

An image appeared in Yorak’s mind before it quickly disappeared. He paused mid-air, tilting his head to the side. “The Blue Lion? She’s here?”

He pushed his ship to move faster at the sudden flare of quintessence he felt. It was like the Blue Lion had sensed his presence and was calling out to him.  

Yorak was a white streak through the sky as he followed after where the quintessence was flaring. At this point he’d gone lower, needing to see if he could spot Blue from where he flew. He made note that he was above a desert, lights only appearing in the distance and not even in the direction he was going in.

 Eventually he landed at the edge of a wide canyon that seemed to hum with energy. After he crouched down and opened his jaws the light in the Lion’s eyes faded as he relinquished control. Yorak blinked a few times before he moved to step down from his seat, once again forgetting that he was no longer as tall as he used to be.

Yorak’s foot caught in his robes one moment and the next he was sprawled out on the ground with aching limbs. Suddenly overwhelmed with emotions at the unexpected bout of pain, Yorak felt his bottom lip trembling and his face scrunching up as large globs of tears welled up in his eyes.

He tossed his head back and wailed. If Yorak had been his previous age he’d never have cried over something as simple as falling down. Yet currently he was in a small body and his emotions were too big for him to handle. The small amount of pain seemed far more pronounced to the former guard. He didn’t know how long he cried for but he was aware that he was calling out his mothers’ names, wondering why they hadn’t come to comfort him yet.

It was a very sobering thought and Yorak found himself crying harder when he realized that his mothers wouldn’t be coming for him. He curled up on himself and hiccupped, pulling the robe over his head and trying to bury himself under the fabric.

He had no clue how long he laid there and cried. The only thing snapping him out of his own pity party was the sound of a vehicle approaching. Yorak quieted down almost instantly when he heard whispering and then footsteps outside the cockpit. He watched the door with wide eyes, pulling his robe tighter around his body and biting his lip to hold back a whimper.

The door opened and someone stepped through, their posture tense and ready to counter any attack. From where he lay mostly blocked by the chair, Yorak could peek at the newcomer without them noticing him right away. She was tall, her skin having a violet hue and her hair matching in a similar vibrant shade. He must’ve made a sound, for eyes flickered down towards Yorak, the yellow of their sclera glinting in the light.

Both of them showed signs of visible surprise at the sight of each other. Yorak didn’t hesitate to duck back behind the chair when a voice came from further behind the Galra.

“Krolia? Did ya find the pilot?”

While Yorak couldn’t understand what the voice was saying, he could pick out a name that was Galran. The one Yorak assumed was Krolia looked over her shoulder at whoever had just spoken and talked in that weird language as well. “The pilot seems to be a… Child?”

“What? A child?”

Krolia nodded, facing back towards Yorak and slowly lowering herself down to the floor. “Wait there for a moment, we don’t want to crowd them. I will try and coax them out.”

She then shuffled slowly towards Yorak, hands raised in an unthreatening gesture to show she held nothing in her hands. Still that didn’t stop Yorak from scrunching up and hissing at her, his skin flashing an array of different colours in hopes to ward her off. He glared from his cocoon of robes, a very unintimidating look leveled at the stranger.

Krolia seemed more surprised at the reaction, her eyes widening a fraction. Despite shaking terribly, Yorak attempted to straighten up from where he sat. He was in no place to fight should she make a grab at him. Yorak was small and weak, his natural Altean abilities unreliable until he went through Shifting. Even now he couldn’t control how his body was flashing colours. So long as he was still scared and panicked, his skin would act like he was a colour wheel. There was no way Yorak could do anything with how vulnerable he was. Though he didn’t like feeling so exposed to a stranger, Yorak knew he needed to communicate with this Galra. She seemed able to understand what the other person was saying so his best bet at getting around this planet was by talking to her.

I am Yorak, son of Ilor and Atka. What planet is this?” He mumbled in Galran.

Of the few languages Yorak knew, Galran and Altean were the only ones he was fluent in. However apparently his words caused Krolia to grow even more confused.

She spoke back in Galran, though now it was Yorak’s turn feel befuddled. Her pronunciation was different and a few words sounded odd. Despite this, Yorak was still kind of able to understand what she was saying.

Your Galran is… Strange. It sounds quite old and far more formal than a child of your age should know.

Frowning Yorak sat up further and let his robe fall from his head. “I would say your way of speaking is odd too. But I’m…” Yorak reached a hand up and ran it through his hair, pulling at the white strands. “I’m not from this current age.

I’m afraid I don’t understand.

Yorak bit at his lip before he felt something brush against his conscious. He gasped when he realized he knew just how to tell her what he couldn’t put into words. He held out his hands, hesitating for a moment.

Um… I know a way to explain to you… If you’d let me.

Krolia’s eyes narrowed as she debated the pros and cons of this request. When she finally came to a decision, Krolia nodded and shuffled closer to Yorak. He reached up and placed his hands to her cheeks, the both of them closing their eyes. Yorak’s markings began to glow as he showed Krolia bits and pieces of his life from before he arrived to this planet.

When the two of them finally came back to the present, there was a sense of understanding swirling in the depths of Krolia’s eyes. She offered a smile to Yorak and placed her hands over his.

Welcome to Earth, Yorak. My name is Krolia. The man outside is named Tex. If you’d like, you are more than willing to come with us. Tex is human so he knows a lot more about the planet then I do. I’m sure he’d be happy to help you.

Yorak hesitated, looking down and shifting uncertainly. “But I can’t understand him. I was never injected with a translator like yours.

Krolia hummed and pursed her lips in thought. “That would be a problem. But you don’t need to worry, I can translate for you. And we can have Tex teach you how to speak the language here so that you don’t have to always rely on me.”

She made a rather good point. Yorak was used to learning languages from his time in school, so how hard could this be? Then again it’s been over 10,000 deca-phoebes since he last went to school, so maybe it wouldn’t be as easy as he thought.

Well no matter, Yorak would deal with it when the time came. He took a deep breath and finally nodded to Krolia. She offered him a smile, standing and backing up in order to offer him space. Yorak would’ve appreciated the gesture if it didn’t suddenly fill him with anxiety. He looked up at her with wide eyes before quickly dropping his gaze to the floor. With a minor whine, Yorak lifted his arms out towards Krolia in a silent demand to be picked up.

Though she was shocked by the action, she quickly schooled her expression. Without another word Krolia bent down and picked up Yorak. She settled him on her hip and made sure his robe was tucked around him securely. “Well need to get you a change of clothes too…

Yorak nodded in lieu of a response, not having any words to add. Instead he clung tighter to Krolia and faced the door to the cockpit like he was facing an enemy. Krolia, Yorak guessed, was able to smell how nervous he was. The Galra dipped her head down and nudged his cheek with her nose in a gentle gesture.

Don’t worry, kit. It will be fine.”

Despite not knowing her for long, Yorak felt that he could trust her. So with resolve he took a deep breath and nodded. Krolia took that as a sign to continue and without a pause she walked through the door with Yorak in tow.