Welcome back to Behind the Hero. Tonight, where are galactic heroes Ratchet and Clank? Well, after defeating the Creature Collector aka Ephemeris on Planet Magnus, Ratchet and Clank are taking a much deserved holiday. No one knows where they went, but the galaxy hopes they will be back on duty soon. In other news, explorers are still gathering data on the newest galaxy discovered last month-
"See? What'd I tell you, Clank? The plan worked. They'll never find us here. We're home free."
The 2 foot robot nodded at what the radio spoke through the speakers. "Agreed. We really needed this little break on Fastoon after our last adventure." Clank watched as his Lombax partner and friend work on their starship, Aphelion.
"May I be of assistance, Ratchet?" Clank asked, trying to find something to do besides sit around as he saw nothing but Ratchet's long yellow furred ears underneath Aphelion. Ratchet heard him with a twitch of his ear but didn't look up. "Huh? Oh, yeah. Grab my wrench, will ya pal?"
Clank nodded and jumped off the crate he was sitting on, fetching his friend's Omni-wrench, and he wet a nearby washcloth that wasn't covered in grease. He brought it back to Ratchet, who rolled out from under the starship and wiped his forehead with an arm with a huff. "Here." Clank said, handing him the wrench and cloth, "It's a hot day today. You need to stay cool."
Ratchet blinked then smiled at his friend's thoughtfulness and wiped his face and muzzle with the wet rag. "Thanks Clank. Bad time for the air conditioner to go out, huh?" He mused as he slid back under the ship. "I'm just about done, then we can have some lunch. I just gotta re-adjust these-"
Clank jumped at the sudden boom that came from under the ship. Right where Ratchet was. He heard an 'Aw, crap' as he ran to Aphelion. "Ratchet! Are you alright?" He asked concerned. Ratchet rolled back out from under the ship, the fur on his face wild, charred, black and burnt. "…peachy…" he grumbled as he reached for the washcloth Clank had given him earlier, "Stupid power stabilizers. It's so touchy that you screw it even a little too tight, boom!"
"I am sorry, Ratchet. Can I get you anything?" Clank asked, still worried. Ratchet got up from underneath Aphelion, wiping the black off his face, his pilot suit almost covered in oil and grease. "A seat at the table." He said. "I'm starving and I think I need a break from Aphelion for a while."
They both went into the house they had restored well enough to live on. But they weren't halfway up the steps to the garage door when suddenly, they heard another boom. This time much, much louder. They both jumped. "What the…!? What was that? I didn't leave the compressor on again, I don't think!" Ratchet said as he ran back to the garage. Clank followed as Ratchet simply jumped over the stair rail and onto the dust covered ground below. He looked around. Nothing running. No one here but them.
He then looked over Aphelion. "Okay, turbines, thrusters, automatic ignition, automated GPS, power gauge…"
"Nothing's left on. So what went boom?"
Ratchet looked up from under the ship's hood, "Yeah, pal? What's- whoa." He stopped, frozen at the sight of what Clank was pointing at outside. His only thought was, What the…?!
A huge pillar of smoke wafted up from the crash site. A trail of destruction showed where it had touched down exactly. He walked next to Clank and they both stared at the scene. Clank sighed, "Why is it that every time we try to take a vacation, something happens?" Ratchet shrugged as his eyes narrowed to look closer at the object, "Seems like action seems to find us no matter where we go, I guess."
His eyes widened in realization. "Clank it's an escape pod! C'mon! Someone might be in there."
Ratchet broke in a run. "Let's go, pal!" Clank leapt up onto Ratchet's back, locking himself onto the harness Ratchet wore. The Lombax took off past the plaza, leaping over rubble and ducking vines that had grown up over the years, until Ratchet finally arrived around the same area where he found Aphelion almost 4 years ago.
The pod must've had a hard landing, throwing up a crater of dust, the pod's door crushed apart, smoke ascending from the inside of it.
Ratchet instinctively slowed his pace, old Megacorp commando training reminding him to always be alert and aware of his surroundings. From experience, he knew that sometimes things are more alive than you think.
First thing he noticed as he peered inside the pod, appeared to be an arm, a red colored sleeve over it, draped limply over a piece of sharp shrapnel. He took a closer look in the pod, hand gripping tightly on his wrench in case whatever the arm was attached to was trying to trick him. If it was, it seemed it was really good at playing possum.
Dust and smoke caused from the impact had hidden it, not to mention it was in the shadows of the pod, but he could see it was bipedal, and around 5 feet in height. Long brown hair had flown over it's face. He cautiously reached out, bracing himself for a possible attack, and brushed the hair away. What? Markazian? No, then what…?
It was female, and she wasn't a Markazian, given it's nose was different and no tail or pointed ears. So then, what species was she? She looked young, probably in her late teens, maybe early twenties. She wore jeans, which were now partially ripped, and black and white shoes with white laces that went up above her ankle. And he saw what looked like a backpack down near the back, probably sent flying by the impact.
He felt Clank jump off his back and glanced down at him as he was walking over to investigate. "What is she?" He asked him. Clank shook his head, "I do not know. I've never seen anything like her. But I do believe she needs medical assistance."
Ratchet looked back at the girl. She was breathing, but barely. A streak of crimson leaked from her mouth, and also a gaping wound on her left shoulder that turned her intire sleeve a darker shade of red. Blood.
"You're right, pal. Scan her and see if she's heavily wounded." Ratchet replied, slowly descending into the pod to retrieve the girl. Clank reached into his small compartment in his torso and retrieved a small monitor. Then a white, flat looking light quickly flowed up and down the girl's body. "Interesting. No broken bones, but she had lost much blood. She does not look well at all. We must get her inside at once."
Ratchet gently picked her up, cradling her head against his chest for support. "Aye Aye, pal." He said, climbing back out of the pod and toward the house, while Clank followed.
He gently laid her on a nearby couch. She flinched from a sudden pain, then released again. Ratchet looked over her carefully, other than a few minor cuts and bruises, she was overall undamaged. He scratched his chin in thought. He had saved 3 galaxies, and been to many planets with various species of life. So why hadn't he seen a type of alien like her before? He quickly grabbed and opened a jar of nano-tech, bracing for any reaction as the blue light swirled and vanished into her body.
He relaxed as her breathing calmed. "Ratchet, are you sure you haven't seen her species before?" Clank suddenly asked, interrupting his train of thought as he came in with some bandages. "Nope…" He racked his brain. "…never." He then had a idea, a spark of realization. "Clank, you think that maybe…she's from that unknown galaxy? You know, the one explorers just discovered." Clank looked thoughtful. "Hmmm, It is a possibility. But if so, I wonder what she is doing all the way out here?" Ratchet shook his head. "I dunno, pal."
He was silent for a moment, practically vibrating with curiosity now. Natural Lombax instinct at work. "Clank, can you keep an eye on her? I'm going back to the escape pod to see if I can find out anything. The on board GPS might still work and then we might get some answers." With that, he quickly pulled on his hoverboots and was gone.
Clank jumped onto the couch's arm after he finished bounding her shoulder wound and watched. The girl was still out, so he had plenty of time to ponder the days happenings. He had no information on her species in his databanks. He frowned. Well, he thought, this event should be quiet informative…