A/N: This is the first story I ever wrote and my pen wasn't the best. I've edited it a lot, but I won't change it too much. If you enjoy my sci-fi stories I hope you'll check these ones out too: Companion, Nival, Gravity Eyes and Invasion.
"Almost done." Finn murmured and bandaged the last of the sparrow's wing.
He carefully placed the bird into a cat carrier and closed the lid. He'd made sure to pack a hot water bottle, beneath a nest of blankets, to keep the animal warm.
The boy lifted the carrier in both arms and set off for the vet.
He reached the familiar building in ten minutes and pushed the door open with his shoulder. The receptionist greeted him with a smile.
"Finn. Let me see if Judith is available."
"Thanks, Clara." Finn smiled and took a seat on a green plastic bench in the waiting area.
A harried looking young woman, with red hair and a white lab coat, stepped into room. She grinned at him wearily.
"Finn. I know you love animals, but you can't keep showing up without an appointment." She chided gently.
Finn stood and cradled the carrier with a wry smile.
"Sorry, Jude. I thought I might catch you at a good time." He spoke quietly.
Judith was his older brother's ex-girlfriend. She'd babysat Finn plenty of times when he was younger and their mutual love of animals had kept them close.
She sighed and pushed back a few stubborn strands of red hair.
"I just had a cancellation, actually. Come on through." Judith said and he followed her through the door.
"It's a sparrow." Finn supplied, as he opened the carrier. "I think a cat might have got him."
Judith donned a pair of latex gloves and gently lifted the bird. She hummed approvingly as she examined the wing.
"This is nicely done. He's lost a few feathers and is a little scratched up. Nothing serious." She fetched a tube and applied antibiotic cream to the scratches.
"So where'd you find this one?" She asked absently.
"School parking lot." Finn replied, watching the process attentively.
"You know bud, I love your compassion but you can't keep bringing in every injured animal you find. If my boss catches me treating without charging, I could lose my job." She said softly and placed the bird back in its carrier.
Finn lowered his eyes and nodded.
"Sorry, Jude." He said soberly. "I can pay."
Judith removed her gloves and ruffled his curly hair.
"You know the prices are too steep for you, bud. Just be a little more careful and save up for vet school, alright?" She said fondly.
Finn smiled back and rubbed his neck sheepishly.
"Good job on the wing and keep up the hot water bottle. Do you still have the vitamin supplements from your last patient?" Judith asked and Finn nodded.
"Sprinkle that on his food and apply this twice a day for a week. Then come back for a check-up." She handed him the tube of antibiotic cream.
"Thank you." Finn said gratefully. "I'll see to your lawn this week."
Judith handed him the carrier with a mischievous glint in her eye.
"You know my car could use a little polishing." She said with a small smirk.
"I'll bring my dad's wax." Finn promised, and ducked out the door, before the young vet could think of more creative ways for him to pay his debts.
He nodded to the waving receptionist and held the door awkwardly with his shoulder, for an old lady and her poodle.
He went home and fed his patient, before donning a jacket and heading off to babysit his former neighbors kid, Ben.
Ben's mother was a single parent, who'd been forced to move into smaller accommodations when she couldn't make ends meet. She had three jobs and Finn babysat her four year old twice a week, to give the poor woman a break.
"You're a lifesaver, Finn." Sofie was wearing makeup that didn't quite mask her dark circles and wan complexion, but when she smiled she looked lovely. "Call me if anything comes up. There's a lasagna in the fridge."
Finn nodded and assured her he would. The woman kissed his cheek and hurried out the door.
"Fiiiinn!!!" Ben, three feet tall with shaggy blonde curls, raced through the doorway and latched onto the older boy's leg.
"This is a tricertots!" The child stated proudly and held up a plastic dinosaur.
Finn grinned and lifted the kid onto his hip.
"Triceratops." The older boy corrected and kicked off his shoes. "That's cool."
"Want to see his friends?" Ben asked eagerly and wiggled to be let down when Finn nodded.
Finn spent the evening playing with dinosaurs and watching cartoons. He fed them both Sofie's leftover lasagna and prepared the child for bed. By the time Sofie arrived home, Finn was anxious to see to his animal patient.
"Thank you, darling." The mom left a pink stain on the boy's cheek and a blueberry pie in his hands.
Finn set off home at a brisk pace, and jumped over a park fence, to cut the journey short.
The park was dark and deserted, but he knew it well and walked the swerving paths confidently.
He had just taken a bite of pie when a bright light glared through the trees. The boy yelped, dropping the dessert, and covered his eyes.
A harsh buzzing filled his head and Finn spun, stumbling blindly backwards. The noise increased to a deafening volume and his knees buckled.
Finn woke to a pounding migraine and a chemical taste in his mouth. He was lying on a spongy surface and his arms were lined with tubes running a blue liquid. His veins seemed to throb, in time with his head, and a large hand brushed over his brow.
An alien, Finn thought dazedly, as he stared up at the blue being before him.
Something in the lines of its face made him think it was female. It wore a white bodysuit with grey markings and its nose was flat and cat-like. Her eyes were yellow with red pupils and her smile revealed sharp teeth.
Finn felt his whole body shiver with apprehension and the alien's long fingers stroked again.
"You're safe. Try to relax." Her voice was deeper than a Human woman and had a hissing quality to it.
Unsurprisingly, this statement didn't ease the boy's racing heart in the slightest and he cleared his throat.
"Where am I?" He spoke hoarsely.
The strange alien smiled wider and kept petting his hair.
"You're in a clinic, being prepared for transportation to Keafule. A facility for multi-racial species." She answered lightly.
Finn's heart stuttered painfully, but he kept still beneath that large hand. The needles in his arms felt deep and his legs were strapped down.
"Will you let me go home?" He asked gravely.
Her smile twitched, but her gaze remained steady.
"No. Are you thirsty?" She said, switching the subject deftly.
Finn nodded numbly and sipped the cup held to his lips. The drink was both sweet and salty and his heart beat slower afterwards.
A crash sounded beside them and a steady chime began to ping through the room. The alien lifted her hand and hurried towards the commotion.
Finn turned his head and watched in disbelief as a purple boy - with furred white ears and claws - was wrestled onto a mat by several blue aliens. The boy snarled and bucked, long legs ripping free of their confines and kicking out at his assailants.
The blue aliens inevitably restrained him and a clear mask was placed over his spitting mouth. The needles, that lined his purple arms, bled red as his struggles gradually eased and then stopped entirely.
The blood was mopped up and a few aliens rubbed their limbs from the unconscious boy's hits.
The mask was removed and the boy slept, chest moving steadily as the chime died down.
Finn eased out a shaky breath.
The boy's face was sharp, with a pointed chin and tilted eyes. His nose was small and straight, mouth thin and wide. Purple hair fell to his shoulders and was only a few shades lighter than his skin. And the triangular ears, on the top of his head, twitched lightly in sleep.
Finn felt a presence step up beside him and turned his head to see a new alien smile down at him. This one was male and seemed a little older than the first.
Without a word the alien placed a mask over his face and a cool mist filled the boy's nose and mouth. Within seconds, Finn's eyes closed and he slept.
When he woke up the second time his headache was gone and his limbs tingled oddly.
The female was standing over him.
"How do you feel?" She asked.
"Ok." Finn croaked and licked his parched lips.
The alien silently handed him a cup and he drank thirstily of the sweet and salty drink.
"Try to sit up." The alien instructed and removed his cup.
Finn slowly sat up and the tingling intensified in the areas that pressed against the spongy surface of the mat. His bare feet touched the floor and his toes cramped. He winced.
"Any discomfort?" The alien asked and Finn shook his head.
"Just pins and needles. My feet are a little numb." He explained.
The alien knelt and massaged his feet and calves. Her fingers were long, with red nails and six digits on each hand.
As her hands moved up his leg Finn noticed his skin was hairless. He lifted a hand to his head and patted the familiar curls with relief.
When her hands reached his thighs, Finn eased away. The alien glanced up at him and smiled in understanding, eerie eyes narrowing with the motion. She moved onto his hands and arms - motions firm and impersonal.
By the time she was done most of the prickling was gone and Finn stood shakily. His arms were bruised from the needles and a pink line ran up his pale stomach. He swallowed with nausea, as his mind offered possible reasons for it.
He looked up and was speared by icy blue eyes. The purple boy was restrained in an upright carrier and surrounded by several aliens. He watched Finn through slit pupils, mouth fixed in a sneer.
The female touched his arm lightly.
"This way." She said and Finn followed, stepping gingerly on the smooth black floor. The purple boy was steered out after him.
He felt self-conscious walking naked before the feline and softly asked for some clothes.
The blue alien smiled pleasantly, but denied him.
They stepped through several tunneled passages lined with lights and met a set of white doors, that seemed at odds with the dark surroundings.
"These are the doors to Keafule. Your temporary stay." The alien supplied.
"Temporary...then where will I go?" Finn asked quietly.
The alien touched his shoulder and guided him forwards.
"To your new home." She answered and the doors opened.
They were received by several blue aliens, who eyed Finn with pleased expressions and the purple boy with blank wariness.
"This is the Human and the southern Ytra." The female said, gesturing to Finn and the feline. "The Ytra is aggressive. Both have been chipped with all twenty-two million and eighty-five thousand currently recorded languages."
Finn's head spun with that announcement.
He was led forward by another alien and they walked through a second set of doors. Boys of all kinds lounged around the room.
Some were tall, short, colorful or had various animal appendages. They were all humanoid on two legs, though some looked more Human than others. All were naked.
The alien beside Finn took his wrist and wrapped a strip of black material around his upper arm. When its edges met a beep sounded and Finn jumped as a jab of needles hooked into his skin.
The alien smiled at him with his disconcerting eyes.
"It's a Keafule transmitter. Nothing to fear." He explained and directed him to a lounge area covered in blankets and pillows.
The Human sat and leaned back against the wall. He closed his eyes against a rush of exhaustion and listened as the alien moved away.
A soft shape brushed over his fingertips and Finn's eyes flew open.
A slim boy - with white skin and black wavy hair - grinned at him. His large eyes were a pale blue with barely discernible grey pupils. He also had triangular black ears and a puffy black tail that he was currently brushing over Finn's leg.
"You look cold without any fur." The boy said and, when he spoke, small fangs flashed between his full lips.
Finn didn't have a clue what to say, so he simply nodded. A gesture of agreement or greeting; he wasn't really sure.
The boy seemed to take it for agreement because he climbed onto Finn's lap and wrapped his tail around the Human's waist.
Finn let out a startled breath as their limp genitals touched.
The feline ran his hands through Finn's brown curls in a shockingly familiar gesture.
"This is soft." The boy remarked. "Not as soft as mine though. Feel." He took Finn's limp hand and placed it on his neck.
Finn felt a moment of dazed distraction as silky fur brushed over his fingers. The boy's entire spine was covered in it, leading a trail down to his long tail. The feline purred against him and leaned into the touch Finn barely registered he was giving.
He ripped his hand away and the boy gave a disappointed pout.
"Keep going!" He demanded, reaching for Finn's hand again.
A new voice laughed.
"Noni, not all species are as affectionate as you." The voice belonged to a grey skinned boy with long white hair. His eyes were an inky black with white centers and his limbs were thin, almost gaunt.
"This one is!" Noni turned back to Finn from inches away and his blue eyes seemed uncomfortable discerning.
"He's just shocked from his arrival. What's your name?" Noni ran his slim fingers through Finn's hair again and smiled sweetly.
"F-Finn." He answered, and clenched his fingers against the urge to stroke that fluffy tail.
The white haired boy laughed, voice ringing melodically through the room.
"You didn't even ask his name before molesting him?" The boy grinned, sharp teeth flashing in his thin face.
"This isn't molestation!" Noni's ears pushed flat. "This is an introduction. Would you mind your own business?" He snapped, making the request sound more like an order.
The grey skinned boy tilted his head and nodded amiably at Finn.
"My name is Anargi. I'll be happy to show you around, when Noni proves too much for you." With a final toothy grin the boy stepped away - moving gracefully on the balls of his slim feet.
Noni watched him go with narrowed eyes, then turned back to Finn, ears perking up.
"I don't mean to overwhelm you." Noni said softly, running his tail over Finn's back.
"This really is a greeting on my world. I like you. I want to be your friend. Is this allowed?" His gaze was filled with such serious solemnity that Finn wanted to duck away and hide. Instead he swallowed hard and struggled to speak. He'd never been good with words.
"I'd like to be friends." He finally managed and Noni's face lit up with a bright smile. The feline ducked his head and rubbed their cheeks together. And Finn felt downy soft hairs brush against his skin.
"Friends." Noni purred and twined his arms around Finn's neck.
Finn clenched his hands against the floor. He'd known he was gay from a young age and Noni's animal characteristics didn't seem to be dulling his hormonal response to an attractive male.
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