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Native Training

Posted on Sun Sep 9th, 2018 @ 2:39pm by Lieutenant Me'Shlaht & Commander Leigh Jacobs

Mission: Repairs and Reprimands
Location: Shooting Range; Starbase 239

Leigh sighed as her phaser beam narrowly missed the flying drone. "Damn," she cursed. She and Me'Shlaht had challenged one another to a marksmanship competition and now it was Me'Shlaht's turn. "Eight out of ten," Leigh read off her score.

"This was your idea," Me'Shlaht reminded her gleefully, obviously enjoying both the shooting challenge and that Leigh had finally missed a shot. They'd been at it for a while, and Leigh had proven to be a pretty good shot so far! She took her time tracking a drone and then fired at it, dropping it out of the sky... and grinning rather toothily as she did so. "I have nine. You might still catch me."

Leigh had one wast turn as she tracked the drone and fired but the drone abruptly changed course that caused a glancing shot but not enough to kill the drone. "Damn drone," she cursed with a grin as she placed her phaser down. "Guess you win," she admitted defeat at Me'Shlaht's toothy grin. They had made a bet that if Leigh lost, she would have to undergo Ferasan training and trials on a holosuite on the Starbase. Me'Shlaht had intrigued Leigh ever since she came aboard. Reading up on a culture only provided so much insight as opposed to undergoing it personally, which she was now bound to.

Me'Shlaht made that odd purring noise that served as Ferasan laughter. "I did warn you about this program. You chose it anyway." The challenge had been a fun diversion, and had Leigh won... well she hadn't told Me'Shlaht what the consequence would be. She did suspect it might be mildly embarrassing, however. "The jungle will be fun too."

"Well, I enjoy a challenge. When do we begin?" Leigh asked. At the moment, her schedule was clear for the next day or so and she had a feeling Me'Shlaht would not go easy on her.

"Whenever you'd like. My schedule is more flexible than yours." It was strange not calling Leigh ma'am or commander. Me'Shlaht had to remind herself that they were both off duty, and most Starfleet officers didn't like to be called by their rank off duty. "We can start with one session and see how it goes. If you enjoy it, perhaps it can be something we do more often? Or I can offer it to other crewmates?"

"I'm free for the next day or I'm all yours," Leigh grinned. "We can use the holosuite. I reserved a couple for the the crew to enjoy while we're docked."

"Well then." Me'Shlaht's toothy grin got even toothier, if that were possible. She practically pounced on a wall console, pulling up a file to show Leigh. "We'll start by having you replicate something similar to this." She tapped the screen with her claw, pointing at a picture of a Ferasan in traditional hunting dress. It was somewhat scant clothing, just enough coverage for the naughty bits... with a heavy-appearing collar around the throat. "You don't have to wear the collar... I don't unless I'm hunting something that can hurt me back."

"What is the purpose of the collar?" Leigh asked, studying the scant outfit.

"It protects the airway and blood vessels in the neck. Useful when fighting other predators... or hunting prey with horns." Unlike some Ferasans - and some Caitians - Me'Shlaht wasn't embarrassed by sharing such information. She didn't see the resemblance to the collars other sentients might put on pets.

"I see. I will change and meet you at Holosuite Four, then," Leigh replied.

"I'll be there." Me'Shlaht's tail twitched just at the tip. This was going to be so much fun!

**Holosuite Four**

Leigh stepped inside the holosuite to see Me'Shlaht was already present. With a sigh, she shed the long coat, revealing the scant outfit that hung to her body, barely covering her private areas, along with the collar. Leigh's hair was pulled back into a basic braid. "I guess I'm ready," she replied.

Surprised by Leigh's absolute dedication to the costume, Me'Shlaht slowly got a big toothy grin on her face. She was dressed much the same as Leigh, though her paws were bare as usual. "If you want to hunt, you'll need a weapon, but you look fabulous." She wasn't planning on a hunt this time out, but she'd be up for it if Leigh wanted to.

"I'll give it a try," Leigh said. "What types of weapons do you hunt with?"

"For this? My teeth and claws. But you don't have claws or teeth like mine so..." Me'Shlaht paused to think for a moment. "Something primitive, like a bow or a spear would work well."

Leigh nodded, knowing she would likely have a better chance at hunting with a bow than a spear. "Computer, one traditional terran hunting bow with a quiver of standard arrows." A simple bow and quiver of arrows soon materialized as Leigh moved to pick them up.

"That's perfect!" Me'Shlaht's excitement was genuine, and she practically vibrated. Like a cat about to pounce on a mouse. "How fast can you run?"

"Depends if something is chasing me or not," Leigh joked. "But I'd like to think I'm pretty fast--doubtful I'm as fast as you, though."

"I'll let you set our pace and direction then." Me'Shlaht liked to run very fast indeed, but it wouldn't be fair to Leigh if she just ran off.

"Ok," Leigh turned, getting her bearings in the tropical, humid jungle. She heard the sound of a waterfall not too far off and decided to head in that direction. "What sort of animals are we hunting?"

"This is a jungle on Earth, so most likely we will find birds and small primates." Me'Shlaht followed Leigh through the trees, listening for where the waterfall was. "There are fish too, but I'm not going to make you try to catch a fish."

"That's good but water sources always attract animals, so I think that will be our best bet for hunting," Leigh stated as the sound of water grew louder. From the humidity of the jungle she theorized they were either in the Amazon or on the African continent.

"You're right. And with the trees hanging over the river, we can hunt from above." Me'Shlaht grinned happily until she remembered that she wasn't hunting with a fellow Ferasan. "...oh. Do you know how to climb a tree?"

"It would be easier if I had shoes," Leigh admitted with a grin. "I think we could hunt from two directions--me from the ground and you from the trees."

"That will work! There should be some brush you can hide in." Me'Shlaht took a moment to study the trees around them before choosing one and scampering up into the branches.

Leigh stared after Me'Shlaht for a moment, amazed at her ability to climb so effortlessly and quickly. She shook her head, drawing an arrow from the quiver and setting it into her bow as she crept through the brush slowly until she had a clear view of the river bank while remaining concealed. Over the stream, there weren't any animals currently. After several minutes of waiting, a warthog emerged from a brush and made it's way to the stream for a drink.

Spotting the warthog, Me'Shlaht made a chirping noise, drawing its attention upward so that it wouldn't spot Leigh creeping up behind it.

Leigh drew her bow, taking a breath and released. The arrow sliced through the air before piercing the warthog's hind legs. The animal squeled in pain and ran off to the cover of the nearby brush. Leigh ran after it, drawing another arrow.

Me'Shlaht followed up above, leaping from branch to branch to stay with the warthog as it ran. As the smaller animal ran toward a break in the trees that led to a clearing, she dropped down in front of it, and it slid to a stop with a loud squeal.

Leigh ran up from behind as she let loose another arrow that missed the warthog. "Damn," she cursed as she loaded another arrow, wishing she was a better shot with the bow. The warthog snorts, turning towards Leigh.

Me'Shlaht took that moment to pounce, grabbing the animal with her claws and holding it still, despite its loud squeals. She would give Leigh the kill, but holding the critter still might help.

Leigh drew once again as she quickly approached the hog and released the arrow that found it's target, puncturing it's heart as death instantly claimed it. "Ok, I suck at archery," Leigh joked as sweat glistened her skin. "Thanks for the help."

"You're welcome." It would be rude to laugh, so Me'Shlaht merely smiled and she gracefully got up from the ground. "And you do not 'suck'. You just haven't practiced it. Of course you won't be good at it right away."

"Well, it's obvious I need alot of practice," Leigh replied. "So what's next?"

"Well, normally we'd eat it. But you can't eat it raw, so you'll have to cook it if you want to do that. Or we could just call this exercise done and play more another time." Me'Shlaht gave Leigh a lazy sort of grin.

"Let's call it a day and continue later," Leigh replied.

"Agreed. Computer, end program." The scene around them blinked out of existence, and Me'Shlaht cheerfully bounded toward the exit. "See you next time!"


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