It was dusk when a large, tired caravan stopped to establish and construct a new city to live in.
"Star, what is our current casualty count?" The leader of the caravan asked the woman sitting on the motorcycle next to him, surveying the land as the caravan stopped.
"I'm afraid that it's pretty bad," The woman responded in a strained and tired voice. "We lost forty brave men and women tonight and we have nearly a hundred wounded to contend with. We took quite a beating this time but, at least the enemy didn't reach the outpost."
"Bring the torches. This is where we'll start building," the leader said with a tired sigh. "Have everyone who is able to work, meet here with me."
"All right but, take it easy brother; the last thing that we need right now is for you to give out on us," Star stated as she rode out into the caravan to spread the order.
Not long after Star left, members of the caravan began to arrive with torches. In the torchlight there was shimmer of molten silver. This shimmer was caused by the light of the torches reflecting off of the leader's long silver hair, a trademark of his lineage. It was a stark contrast to his deep obsidian fur, which shined like polished obsidian. Removing his helmet revealed the features of a handsome Martian mouse. The torchlight glittered in his ice-blue eyes, eyes that were very rare to see in male mice. His expression was one of great sadness and worry.
"Thor," the leader called to a huge chestnut-colored mouse.
"Yes, my prince," Thor responded, his voice was rich and deep.
"I want you to organize everyone who is here to start construction," the leader commanded, and then added. "I'm tired Thor, and that is the only reason why I'm not going to argue with you tonight about your insistence of calling me by my formal title."
Thor just smiled as he got off of his bike and started to issue orders to those who were assembled and ready to work. He towered over the other workers, at 7'3. His hair was cut short with the exception of a small ponytail that barely reached his shoulders. Two braids that fell down to his shoulders from behind his ears. Thor could accomplish the work of ten mice due to his massive size and strength. No one could match his raw power, except his commander.
"Sir, can I speak to you a moment before you go help Thor and the others?" A young female mouse called to the black mouse as he got off his bike. She had tan fur, long chocolate curls, and a look of intense concern.
"What do you need, Ashaylea?" Silver replied in a gentle, almost seductive voice.
"Where is a good place to move the injured, sir? I'm worried that they'll be in the way of the workers who are building the city walls," Ashaylea asked, as she studied her commander. She could see that he too was tired and under a lot of strain.
"Where are the wounded located?" Silver asked the doctor.
"Many of them are located very close to where the southern wall is to be constructed, sir." Ashaylea responded.
"Hmmmhow many people do you need to help move them to a safer location?" He asked Ashaylea. "And will you please stop referring to me so formally? I am no different from you or any other member of the Drifter clan."
"Alright sirSilver. I'll try," Ashaylea said with a small smile. "I think that I'll need at least ten people to help move the everyone to a safer location."
"I want you to talk Thor and see if he can spare ten workers to help you. I'll start moving the wounded while you find out," Silver replied with a grin and turned to leave.
"But sir! You can't move the wounded by yourself! You shouldn't even help with the city's construction. You should be resting and letting your own wounds heal," Ashaylea gasped. There was a strong note of shock and alarm in her voice as she grabbed Silver by the hand.
"Everyone here is my responsibility, Ashaylea; especially the wounded. It won't take long for others to reach the area of the southern wall. I'll be fine; don't worry." Silver replied softly, as his grin changed to a gentle smile. "Now will you please let go of my hand and go talk to Thor?"
"Ok, just as long as you promise me that you'll take it easy. If I find out otherwise, I'm going to make you stay with wounded," Ashaylea replied sternly, still holding on to Silver's hand.
"I'll be careful," Silver repeated gently, as he waited for the doctor to release his hand.
"You know the consequences," Ashaylea remarked coolly as she let go of Silver's hand. The sternness of her expression melted away. "And remember, it wouldn't be good for morale if you collapsed, OK?"
Silver just smiled at the doctor, then he turned and walked across the encampment.
I don't know how I'll make Silver stay with the wounded if he breaks his promise, Ashaylea thought as she watched Silver walk away, but I'll find a way if I have to.
I hope that we can have at least the walls done before dawn, Silver thought as he walked through the encampment. Everywhere he looked, he saw his people, exhausted and worn. We can't handle another assault, not in this state. The area that Silver walked through consisted mostly of exhausted young children who, slept in the care of a few women that could not help with the construction. So many young faces, Silver thought, taking off his vest. He knelt down to gently cover a small trembling child. Sighing he got up and continued on. He knew that many of these children were now orphans, and that thought weighed heavily on his heart. Damn Plutarkians, Silver thought bitterly, why can't they just leave Mars alone for once? It's not like we have much left to offer those filthy fish anymore, since they already strip-mined the planet years ago.
When Silver arrived at the site of the southern wall, he silently and wearily sighed. His people had gone through so much in the last few months, fighting with incredible courage against innumerable odds; and yet so many barely escaped with their lives. There was at least ONE good thing about everything that has happened, Silver thought, as he stood among the injured. At least the Plutarkians that discovered our city are no longer around to tell about it, or find the new location of the this one. Carefully Silver made his way through the wounded to those who were still able to walk. This will be a good place to start, Silver thought, as he knelt down next to a young, red furred male mouse.
Ashaylea watched Silver make his way across camp. I wish that I could do more to help him, she thought, but this is getting me nowhere. And if I keep standing around here well we'll never get the injured moved. Ashaylea thought, then she shook her head to clear her mind. Then the doctor turned and started walking toward the outskirts of what would be the city's eastern wall. Ashaylea marveled at how her people could find the energy to work so quickly under such strained circumstances.
"Thor," Ashaylea shouted, waving to get the chestnut-colored mouse's attention over all of the noise of the construction. "Can I speak with you a moment?"
Hearing someone shouting his name, Thor turned to see the doctor standing on the ground below him. He jumped down from the wall, to speak with her.
"Is there something wrong, Miss Ashaylea?" Thor asked as he walked over to her. "What can I help you with?"
"I was wondering if you could spare ten workers to help move the wounded to a safer location? They may be in the way of the construction of the southern wall. Silver is already starting to move people, but I don't want him doing it all by himself. He's done enough already. Can you help me?" Ashaylea explained.
"Hmmmm," Thor said then turned to face the workers. He let out a loud whistle.
Hearing the whistle all of the workers stopped what they were doing and looked to Thor.
"Listen up," Thor shouted, his voice rolled like thunder in the silence. "We need to move the injured to a safer location. They are in danger of being too close to the construction of the southern wall. Since our number one priority is the safety of our people, I want all of you to help move them. Am I clear?"
Thor turned back to the Ashaylea and said with a smile, "Will this be enough helpers for you Miss?"
Ashaylea watched in amazement as all of the workers put down their tools and made their way down from the walls to join her.
"I think that will be fine," Ashaylea replied softly, with a grateful smile.
It took them a little more that an hour to move everyone, Ashaylea marveled, as she stood in the middle of the camp surrounded by the wounded. She shook her head in amazement as the last of the workers returned to the walls to finish the construction.
"Is there anything else we can help you with?" A soft voice asked from behind her.
Turning, Ashaylea saw Silver, followed by Thor, deftly moving through the mass of people to stand next to her.
"No," she replied gently, " the two of you have done enough already. Thank you for all your help."
"Then I believe that it is time for me to return to my work, Miss," Thor replied, then turned to Silver and asked. "Are you coming my Prince?"
"Of course." Silver responded, clapping Thor on the shoulder, then he began to walk toward the construction. "We have much to do before the sun comes up."
"Yes we do," Thor said as he followed his commander.
"Please, be careful," Ashaylea, said quietly to herself as she watched the two men leave. "I don't want to lose either of you," then she turned and looked at her people, and thought, yes, we do have much work to do before the sun comes up.
Several days later, as the sun rose, Silver stood a top the northern wall by the gates of the city watching and thinking. From his vantage point he could see the Martian outpost bustling with activity.
It all seems so peaceful, he thought in wonder. It's hard to believe that only days ago a battle took place. Thankfully the walls that face the outpost were finished before dawn. The outlanders stationed at the outpost know nothing of our presence here, which is good. There is still much work to be done and I worry for everyone's safety. It seems as though the Plutarkians are hunting my clan, trying to eradicate us.
"I thought that I might find you here," a woman's voice seemed to float though the haze of Silver's thoughts.
Turning Silver saw Star, his sister, making her way up the wall to stand next to him. Star was an attractive woman with deep obsidian fur like her brother and short cut silver hair. Though, unlike Silver, her hair did not did not appear as true molten silver, it carried a dull, almost tarnished tone.
"What are you thinking about?" Star asked her brother as she stood next to him and looked toward the outpost.
"I was thinking about going to search for help." Silver replied simply.
"What do you mean search for help?" Star cried out, on her face was a look of shock.
"We need help Star; you know that as much as I do. We've been hunted by Plutarkians for several months now. If I don't find help soon I'm afraid that the Plutarkians will eradicate our people. We've lost so many; I can't bear to lose anyone else," Silver explained to his sister.
"But who will you go to? The outlanders at the outpost will only try to kill you. We have no one to turn to brother," Star responded with a sigh, turning her gaze back to the outpost.
"We have one chance, Star, on earth," Silver replied softly.
"Earth!!! Are you crazy!!" Star nearly shouted in shock, "who are you going to find? It's not like the humans there are going to be much help!"
"It's not the humans that I'm searching for. It's the biker mice," Silver stated calmly to his sister.
"The biker mice?" Star questioned. "What makes you think that they'll help us?"
"I believe that they will understand what is happening to us, they will be the only ones who will see us for who we are, not what we're claimed to be," Silver said gently, as he placed a hand on Star's shoulder.
"The young one will never listen. He's too egotistical and hot headed; he'll fight before he listens." Star started, shaking off her brother's hand.
"Yes the young one will take some convincing but the leader is and honorable man and will listen. He will not judge us. The gray one is also honorable; he will wish to help the children. Even the young one is honorable if a bit hard to control," Silver explained softly. "I have to try, sister. Our lives are at stake here."
"Then let someone else go," Star pleaded. "We need you here, you're our leader."
"All the more reason why I must go. The people of this city are my responsibility," Silver replied, pulling his sister into a gentle hug. "I will leave in three days; by then the walls and defenses should be complete. I will leave you and Thor in charge while I'm gone"
"Does Thor know that you're leaving?" Star asked in a choked voice as she pulled away from Silver. She was determined not to cry. "He'll want to go with you."
"Not yet. I'll tell him later this evening," Silver said with a smile. "Now I should quit standing around and help around the city."
"Let us both help," Star said with a small smile, thankful for the change of subject.
Then brother and sister took one last look at the Martian outpost before walking side-by-side down into the heart of their bustling city.
Later that evening Silver decided to go break the news to Thor.
"What!!! My Prince you can't go to Earth alone." Thor started in shock.
"I will go to Earth ThorAlone" Silver interrupted, the tone of his voice finalized the matter but, he still knew that his friend would still try to dissuade him.
"But...but...but you can't go alone," Thor nearly shouted in exasperation.
Three days later Silver mounted his motorcycle and left the city alone.
"This is going to hurt," Silver muttered to himself as he and his bike streaked across the sky toward a tall building.
Charlie was working on cleaning up the shop when she saw something blazing through the sky just outside the window. What in the world was that, she thought as the object streaked by. Was that some kind of meteor?
Silver braced for impact but he knew that there wasn't much that he could do. His ship was breaking apart as he wrestled with the controls. The only thing that I can do is eject, he thought, maybe the remains of the ship will buffer my impact somewhat. Silver ejected and watched as the remains of his ship crashed higher up on the building that what he was going to, both he and his bike crashed into the unyielding building.
"What the" Charlie remarked as the dilapidated, abandon building next to her just seemed to explode.
Running outside Charlie saw the last remnants of the old, six-story warehouse fell into the pile of dust and rubble. What's going on here, she thought. Was this something that Limburger was planning to scare me into selling the Last Chance Garage? Well it failed miserably, she thought with satisfaction, then turned and walked back into her garage to finish cleaning.
Silver slowly came to consciousness with a moan. Where am I, he thought as he sat up slowly. Looking around he found himself buried in the remains of the building that he crashed into.
"Ohhh no!" He cried when his eyes came to rest on his ride. His bike lay under a huge slab of broken concrete and steel beams. Carefully he stood up, wincing at a sharp pain in his side. He placed his hand against his side where he felt the pain and realized that it was warm and moist. Looking down at his hand he saw that it was covered in his own blood. He shook his head and thought, there is nothing that I can do for this now. I need my bike; without it, it will be much more difficult trying to find the Biker Mice, not to mention I don't think that many humans here on earth have sentient motorcycles either. Slowly Silver made his way over to his bike and began moving the rubble. After the rubble was moved he began to examine the damage. There was quite a bit of it.
Sighing he got up, "I have to find a repair shop or I'm going no where", he muttered to himself, again placing his hand to his wounded side. "The sooner I have my ride fixed the faster I can have a look at this minor inconvenience. Don't worry, baby I'll be back for you soon," Silver added giving his bike a loving pat, then began to walk away.
Silver was surprised when he found himself not to far away from what looked like a mechanic's garage. Slowly he made his way toward the building, and as he got closer he could read the sign above the door.
"The Last Chance Garage, that's an interesting name", Silver said softly, then looked down at himself. Hmmm better hide this, he thought as he wrapped his tail around his waist. I'm no sure how humans are going to handle my kind. I'm glad that my helmet stayed intact, I only wish that I had brought something long-sleeved to wear. Ahhh well there is nothing that I can do about it now. He was only wearing a leather vest the color of Martian sand. Then almost as an after-thought he reached into his pocket, took out a strip of cloth and wrapped it securely around the tattoo on his upper right arm. Taking a deep breath, he readied himself to enter the Last Chance. Gently he pushed open the door and walked inside.
"Hello, is anyone here?" Silver called gently. "I need inquire about getting some parts for my motorcycle."
The pain was starting to get worse; again Silver placed a hand to his side. He could feel that the wound had reopened and fresh blood flowed. He began to feel weak and leaned gently against the doorframe for support. I can't let this bother me, he thought, grimacing in pain, I have too much to do!
"Just a moment," a voice called from the other room. "I'll be out to help you in a second.
Silver looked up when he heard the voice and when a woman emerged from a room at the back of the garage, and caught his breath. He hadn't been expecting the owner of the garage to be a woman. Not that there was anything wrong with a woman running a garage. Some of the best mechanics in my clan are women, Silver thought, but it just seemed odd to him for some reason. Maybe it was because I'm on earth. She was tall for a human woman, he could guess that she stood about 5'7." She had shoulder length brown hair and was dressed in a slightly baggy long-sleeved shirt, rolled up to her elbows and a dark pair of pants tucked into work boots.
"May I help you?" the woman said in a pleasant voice, "I was just about ready to close up shop and I wasn't expecting any customers this late at night."
Charlie was a bit startled; she wasn't expecting some one so big by the sound of his voice. The stranger had to stand almost 7' tall. He was wearing what looked like a form fitting, jet-black shirt covered with a rusty red colored leather vest. His pants and gloves were the same color. He wore multiple belts around his waist and there were three leather straps wrapped around his right leg, half way between his knee and thigh, all a deep rust in color. He also wore a black pair of biker boots. She couldn't see his face due to the helmet that he was wearing.
"Sorry to bother you ma'm," Silver said softly, "I'm not from around here and I had some trouble with my ride and was looking for a place to buy parts. I hope that this isn't to much of an inconvience for you."
"No not at all," the woman said with a smile, and then she noticed that he was holding his side. "Are you all right?"
"I'll be fine ma'am," Silver responded, gritting his teeth against the pain. "It's nothing really."
"Let me see," Charlie said, as she walked over to Silver.
"It's nothing really. I'll be fine," Silver responded, hoping that he wouldn't start to sway, for he felt terribly weak and was wondering if he would be able to say on his feet.
One look at Silver's bloody side was all it took. Charlie walked over to Silver's good side and slipped his arm around her shoulder. How odd, she thought, it almost feels like he's covered in fur.
"Ma'm, you don't have to do this," Silver said softly as Charlie led him to the back room. Please don't let me pass out before we get to where ever she's leading me, Silver thought, there is no way that she will be able to carry me if I do.
"You must be joking, right!?" Charlie said to Silver as she helped him walk. She could feel his steps starting to falter more and more. "There is no way that I'm going to let you die in my garage. This looks awful serious."
Charlie led the stranger into the back room of the shop and helped him into the bed that was there. "I'll be back in a moment to take a look at that wound after I get something to clean it up with." Then she left.
Returning a few moments later, Charlie had a few clean rags and bandages along with some antiseptics and a bowl of clean water, which she set down on a small table by the bed.
Hearing the mechanic's return, Silver tried to sit up. Gritting his teeth to keep from crying out in pain he collapsed back onto the bed, weak and exhausted. He was having a hard time staying conscious. Looking up at the garage keeper, he whispered, "Thank you for your help ma'am," before the darkness of unconsciousness overcame him.
Charlie barely caught what the mysterious biker had said before he passed out. She shrugged slightly as she sat down in a chair next to him. This is so strange, she thought. Why am I even doing this? Well, I guess that the first thing that should do is remove his helmet. It would make him more comfortable. She leaned over and unbuckled the biker's helmet, and as she carefully removed it, a long grayish colored braid tumbled out from inside. She nearly dropped the helmet when she saw the face underneath.
"I wasn't dreaming when I thought that I felt fur", she muttered to herself. "I don't believe it. He's a Martian mouse!"
After a few moments the shock wore off and Charlie went to work. It won't do him any good if I don't get this wound taken care of, she thought as she worked on trying to remove the biker's vest. Frustrated, since she couldn't get the vest off, Charlie got up and went to find a pair of scissors. Digging through a drawer she thought, I know I have a pair of scissors in here somewhere now were did I "Ah ha! Found them," she exclaimed then dashed back into the room were her patient slept.
I don't think that he'll be wanting this vest anymore, she thought as she cut it off his wounded side. At least I hope that he won't. It took her a while to bandage the wound. When she was finished she went back out into the other room with to take care of the dirty supplies and clean up. Periodically she looked at the room where Silver slept, and when she finished, she sat down in the chair she had in the work area thinking, it should be comfortable enough.
Charlie got up and stretched the stiffness from her joints. That chair's not as comfortable as I thought it was, she pondered. Well I wonder if my guest is awake or not? She walked over to the room in back and peeked her head in. Nope still asleep, she thought. It's probably a good thing. He'll need rest to recover. Now I wonder where that bike of his is? Charlie walked around the garage tidying up her tools to help her think. After she was done picking up she went outside to think some more. As soon as she stepped outside she remembered, of course how silly of me! I bet his bike is somewhere over in what is left of the warehouse next door. The comet that I saw was probably his ship.
Charlie made her way over to the remains of the old warehouse and began to carefully search for the signs of a motorcycle. I hope that it's not buried under this rubble or I'm gonna have one unhappy mouse. Charlie thought, shaking her head as she chuckled to herself. Behind a large pile of rubble she caught a glimpse of something metallic shining in the morning sun. I bet that's it, Charlie mused to herself. I wonder what our mysterious mouse's bike looks like. Her musings were soon put to rest; the motorcycle was an enormous piece of machinery.
"Man, this is something that would make Throttle proud," Charlie muttered to herself in shock.
Charlie carefully made her way to where the motorcycle was carefully stored. As she got closer, Charlie could see that the bike had sustained a great deal of damage when it had crashed. She was just about to reach out to lay her hand on the handlebars when the bike revved to life and tried to move out of reach. The motorcycle rumbled like an angry animal, and quaked with fury or perhaps, fear.
"Easy, easy. It's ok; I'm here to help," Charlie said softly to the bike. I forgot that these Martian bikes are sentient, she thought. I'd better be careful. "It's all right I just want to help you."
The motorcycle whined and rumbled, still trying to pull away from Charlie even though the damage prevented it from doing so. Charlie took a couple of steps back she was sure that it couldn't move to well, but just in case it could she wanted to be out of its way.
"Look your rider is inside my garage and he's fine, now let me help you," Charlie told the bike. At this the bike seemed to calm a bit. "That's better," she said, relieved that she no longer had to worry about being run over.
She walked over to the bike and began to clear a path. "I sure hope that you can still roll," Charlie commented to the bike. "If you can't I'm not sure what I'm going to do." The bike rumbled softly in agreement.
It took Charlie almost a half an hour to clear a good enough path to walk Silver's motorcycle from out of the warehouse's remains. "Ok, ready?" Charlie, asked the bike. I'm gonna need your help." To her surprise the bike could still roll. Charlie carefully made her way out of the rubble and debris safely with one large Martian motorcycle. Opening the large bay door of the Last Chance she slowly wheeled the bike in.
"Boy do I have a lot of work cut out for me," Charlie muttered to herself aloud. "But I'm afraid that you're going to have to wait just a little while longer. Vinnie's coming over to work on his bike and I don't what him to see you." While talking to the bike Charlie walked over to one of the cabinets in the room. She pulled out a large drop cloth from it and threw it over the stranger's motorcycle.
"You're going to have to be quiet," Charlie told the bike with a smile as she lifted up a corner of the cloth to look at it. The bike responded in agreement with a flash of its lights then turned itself off.
Vinnie arrived at the Last Chance Garage no more than ten minutes after Charlie hauled Silver's motorcycle into the shop.
"Hey Charlie girl," The 6' tall, white Martian mouse called boisterously as he came in. "Do you have the parts ready? I just can't wait to get back on the road!"
"Almost Vinnie," Charlie responded with a smile as she walked over to him, cleaning her hands with a towel as she walked along. "I have to grab a few parts from the back room so why don't you get started? I'll be right back."
"You want me to grab the parts for you Charlie girl?" Vinnie asked when she turned and started to walk away.
"No thanks Vinnie, I can handle it," Charlie responded as she playfully chucked the towel at him, then she disappeared out of the room.
The last thing that I need is for you to see who I have here, she thought as she quietly opened the door and slipped into the room were Silver slept. Why am I doing this!? I don't even know him!
"All right Charlie girl," Vinnie called after her with a shrug, turned and walked to the bay door, where he brought his ride in and parked it in the middle of the work area.
Let's see here the only thing that I'm missing now besides Charlie girl's help is some tunes, Vinnie thought as he started to set up the tools to get to work on his ride. Putting them down next to his bike he then got up and walked over to the radio. He turned the radio onto a heavy metal station, full blast.
Charlie cringed when she heard the first few whining chords blare out of the radio. Silver woke with a start and, disorientated by the awful noise assaulting his sensitive ears, bolted painfully upright and looked around in confusion.
"What is that awful noise? Somebody, please make it stop," Silver moaned in pain, then he lay back down and pulled the pillow up around his ears. "Will someone please put the poor thing out of its misery?"
"I'll take care of this," Charlie growled in anger when she saw Silver's reaction. "If I've told him once I've told him a thousand time to turn the music down!" Then she stormed out of the room toward the work area, making sure to close the door behind her.
"VINNIE! TURN THE MUSIC DOWN!" Charlie yelled at the top of her lungs. "VINNIE!"
Vinnie was paying Charlie no heed since he couldn't hear her over the music blaring from the radio. Hummed to himself and kept on working on his ride.
"VINCENT!" Charlie yelled sternly as she entered the workroom. "TURN THE MUSIC DOWN NOW!!"
Hearing his full name being shouted, Vinnie looked up from his work, at a very angry Charlie who was covering her ears to try and block out the noise. His ears drooped and he quickly got up and turned the radio down to a more tolerable level.
"Sorry Charlie girl," Vinnie called to her innocently from across the room.
Charlie just sighed and rolled her eyes at Vinnie before replying, "How many times do I have to tell you to keep the music down, Vinnie? I swear you never listen." Her anger just slipped away as she saw Vinnie trying to look innocent and cute.
"But you'll for give me right, Charlie girl, cuz I'm just so darn cute," Vinnie responded with a charming smile.
"Don't press your luck," Charlie called back, and then turned around. I'll be right back. I'm gonna go get those parts that we need to fix your bike."
"Ok Charlie girl, I'll be here if you need me," Vinnie replied as he walked over to his motorcycle and went back to work.
Silver looked up when he heard the door open and saw Charlie walk in.
"Thank you m'am," Silver said weakly then passed out cold.
Charlie walked over to Silver, and checked his wounds and whispered to him, "Your welcome, and I'm sorry too." Then she walked over and gathered up the parts she needed and went back out to help Vinnie.
It took Charlie and Vinnie most of the afternoon and into the early evening to fix his ride. Silver slept the whole time. When they were finished Vinnie tore out of the Last Chance Garage to go find Throttle and Modo, who were probably wondering were he was.
"Whew! I'm glad that that is over with," Charlie sighed to herself as she cleaned up the garage. Wiping her hands clean with a towel she sat down in a chair and fell asleep almost immediately.