Knollig: A Terraneu Novel ( Book 2)

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nollig

 

(A Terraneu
Novel, Book Two)

By

Stormy McKnight

Copyright and
Disclaimer

 

Copyright
pending, Stormy McKnight

 

Cover
Art by Brandi Doane McCann

 

Published by Stormy McKnight

Knollig is the second book in the Terraneu series. I would advise that the
books be read in order, to enhance the experience. However, I do try to write
them as stand alone as possible.

Knollig is a work of fiction and the characters, events and dialogue
found within the story are of the author’s imagination and are not to be construed
as real. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, either living or
deceased, is completely coincidental.

No part of this book may be reproduced or shared in any form or by any
means, electronic or mechanical, including but not limited to digital copying,
file sharing, audio recording, email and printing without the permission in
writing from the author
.

Chapter
One

Mairi McPherson knew she
was dying. She wasn’t a doctor but it didn’t take a degree to recognize the
symptoms. She knew death when it was knocking at the door…and it was knocking
at hers.

She had been losing touch
with reality more and more lately, so she wasn’t positive but she could have
sworn she had seen her grandfather earlier. He had visited her as often as
possible through her ordeal, telling her things like:
 

Ye keep
oan fightin' lassie!” and “Ye ur gonnae beat thes.” Today she could have sworn
he had told her something different, something about her going on an adventure?
Well she supposed dying would be the ultimate trip.

 
She loved her
grandfather with all of her heart, the “auld Scottish cit!” It was a shame that
she was going to die and leave him all alone. Her grandmother had passed away
so long ago, Mairi was ashamed to say she couldn’t remember much about her. She
had been a little girl, so she could excuse the lapse on that. Her own mother
was gone too, having abused drugs and alcohol in an effort to forget the man
that had left her when he found out she was pregnant. The only family she had
ever known was Callum McMpherson. The
most gentle, loving,
stubborn…solid influence in her life.

Mairi felt her body being
jostled, and figured they must be turning her over to help with the sores she
had developed all over her small frame. She could feel forward motion, and
struggled to wake up through the morphine they had been giving her. When she
opened her eyes, she saw the inside of an ambulance. They must be moving her
somewhere. With a tired sigh, she closed her eyes. She would try to think about
where they might be taking her later.

She could hear a female
voice, “We don’t have any more time to lose. We need some type of vehicle that
can get us to the fork in the path.” This statement didn’t make any sense. So
she kept listening.

“Ye can tak’ th’ four
wheeler.” That was her grandfather’s voice. “
We will follaw tae say uir good-byes
.” Where
was he going and who was he saying good-bye to? Mairi struggled to stay awake,
was something wrong with her grandfather? Suddenly she was being held against a
warm chest. Then the forward motion started again. She didn’t need to open her
eyes to know she was outside. She could tell by the warmth on her face, and the
breeze rustling the leaves. She had always loved being outdoors, and she lifted
her face to the suns rays. They felt so comforting, like a physical caress
against her skin. The sound of a motor running broke into the tranquility, then
the lights and shadows were flashing quickly across her eyelids.

When she opened her eyes
the next time, she wasn’t going forward anymore. She was in a small clearing.
From the voices she heard there were others here with her. Then her grandfather
was hovering over here, “
Mairi lassie, ah will see ye suin! Ah ken ye can make it, dae 'at fur
me!” He bent down giving her gentle kisses on the forehead, “Ah loove ye
lassie!”

The female spoke again, “If we have enough time once
we are through, we will try to send a message back that it worked. That way you
won’t worry for the next six months. What does she have that you would
recognize as a sign?”

“Th' necklace she is wearin'. When she went aff tae
college in America,
Ah gae it tae 'er tae remin' 'er ay haem
.”
Her grandfather was talking
about her necklace! She remembered it now. When she had left for schooling in
America, he had been against it. They had argued and in the end he had sadly
agreed to let her go. She could have gone to school anywhere, but she chose the
States as a form of rebellion. She thought it was a case of being independent, she
knew a few therapist friends that would love to get a hold of her! She had
ended up liking it in the States and stayed longer than she should have. She
couldn’t get any of that time back now, if it was possible to go back in time
she would have stayed close to her grandfather. She hadn’t taken the necklace
off since she had been diagnosed to remind herself that life was short, and
second chances were few. If you loved someone, you should show them every day
how much they meant to you.

“Thank you for everything! It is going to work out, I
just know it will.” The female sounded excited and scared at the same time.

There was some faint
mumbling around her, she couldn’t make what was being said. Then the person
holding her moved and she was closer to the female she had heard talking
earlier. They were still for a few moments, then she felt an awful pulling
sensation. Lights were flashing around here, she couldn’t keep her eyes open.
Thankfully she blacked out.

~*~*~*

When Mairi opened her eyes
next, she had awoken to the strangest sight! There were a bunch of really good
looking men, a supermodel gorgeous woman, and some kind of ant thing all
standing around staring at her. She really did have an active imagination. She
wondered briefly what her subconscious was trying to tell her.

After a moment the others
moved off, and she was left looking into the eyes of the most breathtaking man
she had ever seen. His purple eyes were looking so deeply into hers she thought
he must have been trying to see into her soul. She was so focused on his
perfect face that she missed his hand moving. She couldn’t miss the silken
touch as his fingers traced her sunken cheeks and upward to the crows feet at
the corner of her eyes.

She ended up in his arms
and as he turned to walk away, the female said something. Her necklace was
suddenly removed from around her neck, she struggled to get it back but she was
too weak and the effort exhausted her. She was struck by how hard it was to
breathe and knew that this must be the end. She must be facing a test or
something before she could go through the gates. Everything she was seeing must
be something from her subconscious, trying to tell her something. The
supermodel gorgeous woman must be a warning against vanity. The super hot
men…that was easy, temptation and lust. The ant creature, she wasn’t sure about
that one. Maybe a warning about being nice to creatures big and small? Or in
that creatures case a small thing made big! She worried for a moment, then
remembered who was holding her. She felt herself instantly relaxed. For some
reason she felt safe with the Angel assigned to take her to Heaven, she somehow
knew that he would keep her safe.

He
turned and started running, moving toward the gates perhaps? They walked
through a sheer curtain, then he stood still. Concern etched on his features.
She smiled weakly up at him, she was ready.

“Baqu
un purka rurashar!” he said urgently.

“I
don’t understand what you are saying.” She replied weakly, “I am ready to go to
Heaven with you, you don’t have to re-assure me. It’s ok.”

There was the awful
pulling sensation again, she thought about what she would have changed about
her life in those seconds as she flew toward Heaven. Her number one regret was
her grandfather. She should have stayed closer to Scotland, and been a better
granddaughter! She also should have spent less time at work, and more time on
having a lasting relationship. She had gone through boyfriends and taken
lovers…but never anyone she would spend any amount of effort on. She should
have been a better friend. She should have developed hobbies.

Given
a second chance she would have been a more rounded person. Not physically,
because she had been plenty round before she had gotten ill. There wasn’t
anything American’s wouldn’t deep fry in oil, and she had tried most of it. To
the detriment of her waistline! Coming back to Scotland these last years, she
had started to walk off some of her indulgences but then she had gotten the
diagnosis that changed her life. The “C” word…she had it, and it was terminal.
All the “should have done” and “would have done” meant nothing now. Quite
simply put, her time had run out.

Chapter Two

 

Mairi woke up with a groan. With reluctance she
opened her eyes and peered up. Her “Angel” was hovering over her, his concerned
gaze was locked on her. She remembered those amazing purple eyes. Curious about
the rest of him she took in his face. It was strikingly handsome, with high
cheekbones and full lips. His dark black hair brushed against his wide
shoulders. A black vest contrasted with his golden tan skin. She could make out
his muscular chest, and with the vest was open enough she could see washboard
abs that tapered to a trim waistline. His black pants encased his muscular
thighs, and impossibly long legs. He had to have been well over six feet tall.
He was an impressive sight, and even better looking than she remembered.

A sigh escaped her and she said, “I’m ready for
judgment now. I can face anything with your help.” He just looked confused so
she hurried to ask, “You are my Guardian Angel right?” Before he could respond
she said, “I know I haven’t been the best person all the time, but I haven’t
done anything that would get me sent to Hell.” She licked her lips and she
noticed that his gaze went to her mouth. Then his frown intensified and she
gasped, “I am going to Hell, is that what you are scowling for?” He leaned
forward and she clenched his vest in both hands, pulling him forward to within
an inch of her face. She could feel tears pool in her eyes. She hadn’t even
considered that she would end up in Hell! There were a lot of things she had
denied herself. She didn’t steal, she tried not to lie, she had never killed
anyone…not that she hadn’t dated guys who deserved it! She hadn’t slept around
when she was younger, and she hadn’t gotten many offers as she got older! She
had lived thirty-nine years, and hadn’t done anything totally crazy in all that
time! Well not anymore by god! If she was bound for hell…she might as well earn
it.

“I guess I’ve failed the “temptation of lust” test
because I’ve been wanting to do this since seeing your face.” Without any
warning she pressed her lips against his, he gasped in a breath and she took
advantage. Pressing her lips against the fullness of his mouth, she nipped and
suckled his lower lip. With a groan his mouth opened, and her tongue swept out
searching for his. He was frozen for a moment, then seemed to melt into her.
His chest was suddenly pressed against hers. She was wearing some type of thin
gown, so she could feel the hard material of the vest he was wearing. Impatient
to get it out of the way, she put her hands on his shoulders and pushed it off
his chest. Marveling as his muscles flexed at her touch. Her fingers followed
down his arms, massaging his biceps and further down to his wrists.

“You are the most stunning man I have ever seen. I
could stare into your eyes for eternity.” With the vest out of the way, she
could rub her chest against his. It felt incredible, her breasts got heavy and
her nipples erect. He was still leaning over her, his body pressed against her.
She opened her legs to allow him to fit between them. Reaching down she grabbed
two handfuls of his muscled ass and pulled him forward. He was now pressed into
the vee of her legs, and if this was Hell she would take it over Heaven any
day.

“Get a room already!” The laughing female voice was
like being drenched by a bucket of ice water. Mairi dragged her passion filled
gaze from her Guardian Angel, to see the supermodel from before and a male that
looked similar to the one she had been kissing so fervently. “Knollig the
Council members are on their way, you might want to stop molesting the poor
girl and get ready.”

Horrified she looked up at the male to see
smoldering purple eyes, and a wry smile on his face. “I am glad you are well,
we were worried about you Mairi.” His husky voice sent chills gown her spine.
He gently pried her hands from his body, and fixed his vest, then turned to
face the newcomers to the room. “Thank you for the warning Amber.”

With that he pushed a button, and her bed sat a
little further upright. He stepped to the side, while the female and other male
come over to her bedside. She looked around and realized there was another bed
like the one she was on. Eight walls went around the room, with different doors
or consoles spaced throughout.

“I am Amber, and this is my mate…Kniam.” The female
held out her hand. “It’s nice to meet you.” Mairi shook hands. Then froze as
she noticed the fullness and color of her fingers. Then she looked farther up
her arm, the same fullness and color reached there too. Her skin was tighter
and the muscles more defined.
 
Mairi
started taking deep breaths to try to regain her composure. Then it hit her…she
could take deep breaths. They weren’t rattling or raspy! What was going on? She
was going to hyperventilate!

“Didn’t you tell her anything Knollig? I can see her
freaking out.” Amber glared at him, “You could have saved the make out session
for later you know.”

Mairi could feel her head spinning, and her vision
was beginning to tunnel.

“Quick, put her head between her legs! It should
help.”

Knollig was the closest, so gently pulled her
forward and pressed her until her head was between her legs. This caused a
massive wave of auburn hair to sweep almost to the floor. “Oh my god! Is that
my hair?!” She gasped as she reached from her upside down position to run her
fingers through the mass of curls. Watching as the light played off the
different strands, dark brown, red, and dark red. “What is going on?”
 
She almost made it through the shock of her
hair, when she realized she was bent over…and she wasn’t feeling any pain! She
took in the silky smooth skin of her legs, also toned and more muscular that
she remembered. “What…” she didn’t get any further. Her overtaxed mind couldn’t
take anymore, and blackness took her once again.

~*~*~*

Mairi was stirring on the bed when she heard the
female, she remembered her name was Amber.

“I swear Knollig. You think you would have learned
from when I woke up. We are very sensitive to the changes that happened. You
should have calmed her down and told her what was going on!”

Her mate Kniam chimed in, “I agree with Amber. To
kiss on the female first thing upon her waking was not very smart.” There was a
pause, then the male continued speaking, “Although I am happy to know that you
too were able to break through the genetic block and feel desire for a female.”

The one she had been kissing, Knollig replied, “I
was waiting for her to wake fully before telling her what was going on. I had
leaned in to check her pupils for signs of sickness when she kissed me.” He
continued, “She was…confused when she first woke up but I would have gotten
around to talking with her.” Mairi was glad that he hadn’t told the other two
that she had hallucinated that she was dead. She was pretty sure that this
wasn’t a waiting room in Heaven or Hell. She was getting a little less muddled,
and figured she obviously wasn’t the dearly departed.

Amber continued teasing, “Yeah, right after you had
sex on the table.” She started laughing, “I am just kidding around with you
Knollig. We are just worried about Mairi. We need to tell her what is
happening, then let the Council members in.”

“I have told them telepathically what is going on,
and they are content to return to the meeting dome and wait there. Knaleg is
keeping them busy with details of security features he is implementing anyway.”
Knollig had stated this, but what did he mean by telepathically?

“I think the female is awake again, I can see her
eyelids twitching.” Kniam stated, and when she opened her eyes she saw they
were once again watching her.

Amber rushed over, “Are you feeling okay?” Laughing
at her own dumb question, she said, “Forget I said that! I know you must have a
million things running through your mind. Believe me…I’ve been in your place.”
Seating herself on the edge of Mairi’s bed, she took a deep breath and said,
“Would you like me to explain, or do you prefer one of the men?” Her eyes
sparkled mischievously. “Actually, I better do the honors or you might never
get to the important parts if Knollig has his way.”

Mairi blushed at the reminder of what she and
Knollig had been doing. Before she could respond, Amber exclaimed, “Well no
wonder Knollig couldn’t keep his hands off you. I wish you could see yourself…your
hair is gorgeous, and your eyes are like sparkling emeralds…only a deeper
green.” Amber paused, “I wish someone had been able to talk to me when I came
out of medical. I mean…just waking up in that box! I thought I was dead! Can
you believe how embarrassed I was?! Then running around slapping my head
thinking my hair was an animal they were feeding me to or something!” Amber was
waving her hands around her head, re-enacting a slapping motion. “I was yelling
really loudly, and Knollig picked me up like a sack of potatoes.” Amber was
obviously some type of chatterbox, because she just kept talking. “I know back
on Earth before I was changed the men couldn’t have done it…”

That caught Mairi’s full attention and she broke in,
“What do you mean ‘back on Earth’?”

Amber stopped in mid sentence. “Oh, that’s right. I
need to start at the beginning.” She grasped Mairi’s hand and squeezed, “I
don’t know how much of an imagination you have but…Mairi, you are not on Earth
anymore. We brought you here to Terraneu…” she waved around the room, “Well, it
was a deal we worked out with your grandfather.” Amber was trying to find the
words, when Knollig stepped forward.

“Mairi do you recall that you were gravely ill?” he
asked gently and Mairi’s eyes swung to him.

“Yes.” She answered hesitantly, she would never
forget the feeling of helplessness, frustration and pain. The lost hope for a
life she hadn’t lived to the fullest. “I remember.”

“Do you recall your last moments on Earth, thinking
maybe it was dream?” Amber asked. So Mairi’s eyes swung back to her.

“I remember my grandfather saying something about an
adventure. Then he was saying good-bye and I felt an awful pulling sensation,
then I blacked out. When I woke up, there were strange people around me. You
were there Amber, and you Kniam. Some weird, giant, ant person thing.” Mairi
looked back to Knollig her voice thickening, “You were also there. I remember
you saying something, but I didn’t understand you.”

“That is because we had yet to perform the medical
fix on you. I was speaking my language, not having learned English. With the
medical treatment you received you are able to speak and understand my language
now. It will seem to you as if you are speaking your native dialect.” He smiled
warmly, and her insides melted.

“We need to explain why you are here, where you are,
and what the medical unit has done.” Knollig sat on the other side of her bed.
She now had Amber on one side, and him on the other. Mairi just tilted her head
slightly to indicate he should continue.

“First thing is where you are. This is a planet the
original fathers named Terraneu. We are actually descended from a very distant
Earth civilization. Our original fathers were sent out to search for a planet
to colonize. They were given a port pad that connected to Earth and were to use
that portal when a suitable planet was found. By the time they tried to reach
Earth and bring more people here, there was no answer. We were left on this
planet with no way to contact Earth.” Knollig paused and Amber jumped in.

“What you might have picked up on was the ‘original
fathers’ part. When they left Earth, with no idea of how long they would be in
space…well they didn’t bring any women! All of the men went through a genetic
cleansing so to speak, which turned off their sexual desire. The only thing
able to turn the genetic switch back on, is an Earth female’s pheromone. Not
just any pheromone though, it has to be strong…and how shall I put this…of a
sexual nature.” Amber was blushing again and her mate stepped up against her
side.

“Without females here on Terraneu we had to survive
using the only other means at our disposal. The original fathers had been given
a limited supply of cloning eggs, for use in an emergency. They had been
stripped of all DNA, so we used those eggs to clone ourselves in cycles. We are
at the last of our supply.” Kniam gestured to Knollig to continue.

“Six months ago, a primate was captured on Antilles.
That is the place you saw all of us standing around the giant ant thing…his
name is complicated to pronounce, Amber calls him Zerxix.” Knollig reached out
and gently held her hand. When she didn’t pull away, he continued, “The
Antilleans had no need for the primate, and it was bartered to us. Only it was
not a primate. It was Amber in winter clothes, we mistook for fur. She had
fallen onto the port pad outside your grandfathers B&B in Scotland and
activated the port pad. After a misunderstanding…” Knollig eyed Kniam, “Amber
was placed in the medical unit, just as you have been. The medical unit will
take a genetic blueprint, and create the best possible “you” from it, getting
rid of anything considered unnecessary. When Amber was deemed medically fit by
the unit, she was released. You can imagine what a female loose on an all male
society has been like.”

Amber, Kniam and Knollig all had a laugh over what
she can guess would have been six months of crazy antics. She was more
interested in the rest of the answers they had to give. She needed to look at
things logically. This was something she always did when faced with a question
or problem.

Fact number one, something that was irrefutable she
felt great! There was nothing on Earth that could have done it. Her skin was
clear of sores, her hair was thick…and long! Her body didn’t ache and her mind wasn’t
foggy. She had been cured of the cancer that had ravaged her body, and it
wasn’t Earth technology that accomplished it. So was she on another planet?

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