MENTAL ESSENCE
PAGE 30
    "There is a lot of transports responding." Hiret said.
    "Perhaps we should avoid the situation." said Semma.
    "Well, we have enough provisions for a long hull, but we need the fuel." Hiret said.
    "Probably going to be a lot of confusion, so be prepared to assist the wounded." MB said.
    "I have very little experience with medical situations." Emarr said.
    "Back to who are the Barkazians?" asked Cree.
    "There's background info coming through know." said Hiret.
    Looking out the window Emarr said, "Not Minn."
    Cree was on the other side of the cabin watching a military transport zip by with star burst lights announcing its presents. 
    "This is Captain Rill Holtly of the transport Boyt calling transport Omi-89.  I am approaching your position.  Are you receiving this transmission" said the voice.
    "We are receiving your transmission." replied MB.
    "We are heading for the depot.  Will you be providing assistance?" said Capt. Holtly. 
    "Yes, we will.  We have no real experience in such situations, but we will be present for directions from anyone who can direct us." said MB.
    "There are several transports behind us, and probably a lot coming in from every direction if our communications are valid." Capt. Holtly answered.
    "What type of transport do you captain?" asked MB.
    "We are a tourism and general commerce company.  How about yourself?" replied Capt. Holtly.
    "We're a science expedition on our way to a planet - star collision." Hiret said.
    "Half the region will be there.  Should be a real event, see you at the depot." Capt. Holtly said.
    "With these Barkazians around, perhaps we should form a convoy." said Cree.
    The first authorities and medical personal on the scene of the attack were obviously overwhelmed by the extent of the devastation.  There were bodies and fires everywhere. 
    The crew stood at the base of the loading ramp. 
    "Can you see anyone who looks like they are in charge?" asked Semma.
    Emarr pointed to he right.  "There.  The guy with the light.  He's directing those working on that collapsed building."
    "Over there." MB said pointing to a large black transport.  "There is a military emblem of some sort on its side."
    They headed toward it, taking Trent with them.
    Making their way to the transport was gruesome task.  Bodies of the young and old lay about with large burning holes through them.  Some were seared into parts.  It looked as if the Brakazians used high-powered lasers to strafe he whole area.  The burn lines were still smoking in places.
    No one spoke a word.  Semma sank to her knees and began crying uncontrollably.  They all stopped to help her, but the emotional gravity was the same.  None of them had ever been near, let alone present at a crisis point of this magnitude.
    An excided military orderly ran up to them, "Excuse me, can you help?  We need help." cried the orderly.
    "Ah, ya, we can help." Cree said in a shaken voice. 
    "Come with me." the orderly said.
    The crew and a few others lined up behind the solder, and followed him to a row of load docks.  There they found several dozen, of what appeared to be families, in body heaps.  Some were obviously trying to protect the young. 
    "Find those still alive, and call out for help.  Stay at that spot until a medic arrives." said the orderly as he ran to help carry a stretcher."
    Some began throwing-up, others simply could not move closer to the piles of dead.
    "I don't hear crying or moaning." said Hiret as he looked around.
    "We were talking of war, and here it is.  Violent deaths." said Cree.
    Those who could walk did so slowly.  The living branched out listening for life more then looking for.  It was easier then seeing the bloody corpses expressing the last moments of a living beings' existence.
    Then over a loud speaker an anonymous voice said, "We have detected a protocol II fuel leak.  Every body leave immediately.  This is a life-threatening situation.  If you stay, you will be fatally contaminated.  Leave now.  You must leave now."
    "We can't leave wounded beings laying out here to dye." Semma shouted.
    "There doesn't seem to be any living beings here.  They are all dead.  They killed everyone." said someone rushing by.
    Cree and Hiret grabbed Semma and Emerr and carried them to the top of the bridge.
    "We should be clear." puffed Hiret as he gasped for breath.
    Pointing to three beings lang at the bottom of the bridge someone yelled, "They just dropped.  The fumes are coming this way."
    "Faster, go faster." yelled another.
    Those closest to the bridge began to cough "Here it comes.  Run.  Run." Rang the shouts of someone who began to cough herself.
    "There's fire.  It'll to ignite the fumes.  We'll never make it." yelled someone else.
    Just as those in the front of the wave of beings feeling reached the fire, the fuel fumes ignited.  The fuel burned thought the crowd setting clothing and hair on fire.  Those who could, watched the flames head for the damaged tanks.  When the flames hit the higher concentrations at the base of the tanks there was a tremendous explosion.  Even as far away as Hiret and the others were, the force of the blast knocked everyone to the ground, and the heat blistered exposed skin. 
    The screaming quickly subsided, and was replaced with foul language. 
    "Is anyone hurt?" asked Cree.
    They all had trouble breathing, but there were no life-threatening injuries.
    "That's close enough for me." said Emmer.