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No Such Thing as a Stupid Question

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So, a year and a half there, year and a half back, huh?

In best possible circumstances, yes.

Okay, excelle- wait, best circumstances? What circumstances?

Well you nearly left us without supplies, and even then we’ll still need fuel to get us to homeworld. We’re ridiculously lucky the dropship even started, with how much fluid you wasted.

I wasted? You were hiding that shit in a lunchbox!

You should have been more careful.

I was careful!

I very much disagree, considering your transformation.

Oh fuck you, Christopher.

I have been without access to proper newsfeeds for over 20 years, so the journey may take longer than my estimation. The ansible will have to be repaired as quickly as possible. The light speed drives as well.
Along with most everything else. Your help will be useful, we hoped to have at least one or two more sets of limbs aboard before MNU ruined the plan. As it is, Oliver will probably be teaching you to do basic tasks.

I’m not a little kid!

But you act like one. You are also developing unfamiliar biology. We’re hatched with instinctual knowledge, you may have trouble adapting.

Thanks for your confidence.

You’re welcome.

I was being sarcastic.

I was not.

It’d probably be hard to tell anyway. The, uh, tentacles.

There is all sorts of intelligent life across this galaxy. When we get into more highly trafficked space, we will need to be careful.

Other aliens?

Yes. And for simplicity’s sake, you are not human, you are Poleepkwa.
It is the name of our people. We are not a particularly large presence in the galactic community, but well known for reliability in trade.

You were never reliable on earth.

We were far from home without leadership. It has been difficult to keep our minds in order.

... We’ll get back to that later. First, aliens.

Alright. There are several wars on, the longest running of which, as far as I’m aware, is the Stentarian civil war. They generally keep to themselves. It’s been in a cold arms race for a long time.
More importantly, Cybertronians. They’ve been fighting a civil war amongst themselves for 4 million years, and destroy any people in their way. Our species is part of an alliance that protects us in exchange for natural resources, the Galactic Council.

Like Star Trek?

Not really. It’s very nearly extortion, to be honest, but it’s preferable to being crushed by giant robots.
The longest conflicts are always between mechanicals. Probably because they live such long lives. It’s best to keep your distance, and stay sharp.
And of course there’s always conflicts between organic species. Andalites blockade planets across their sector over matters of pride, Klyntarans and Dire Wraiths infect populations, the Kree and the Xandarians scream at each other as they race to colonize and gentrify or rape and pillage, depending on who you’re asking.

Alright. And your people are friendly?

That’s not exactly a simple question. I doubt the council will enjoy hearing about the injustices on Earth, but I’m sure you will be safe enough.

And you’ll vouch for me?

... Yes. Because we made a deal, and you did your part. But first we have to get there.

———

Wikus, you must keep close to me while we are in public. You must keep your hands and eyes to yourself. Actually, just keep your mouth shut as well.

Why isn’t the kid getting this speech?

Because my child knows how to do all these things. I’m far more concerned that you will screw this up for us.

So then why am I even going with you? Just leave me on the ship!

It will be easier to keep an eye on you if you’re beside me. And I may need some assistance bartering for fuel.

———

Yes, my companion is shedding. They are transitioning species, a very interesting case. Tests on the remains are sure to be fascinating. We could certainly be persuaded to part with them for the right price.

You know, this isn’t what I expected when you said you needed help bartering. Less aliens ripping off the last of my skin.

You won’t be needing it. If it gets us what we do need, you will have contributed something very valuable.