Sorry about how long it took to upload the second chapter, a lot of crap popped up back to back including my internet having a heart attack. I had a friend do some proof reading so hopefully it has better grammar but no promises.

Tracing her friend's footsteps wasn't as hard as Xala had anticipated. They made a good amount of progress despite having to carry her three friends back to her village. It didn't take long, however, to reach a roadblock in the shape of a canyon wall. This is what Xala dreaded the most; she had no idea on how she would be able to get them out of the canyon even with James' help. Luckily they had only been traveling for about an hour before they reached the bottom of the canyon wall

"How are we going to get up there?" Xala panicked as she set Kala down gently. She tried her best to restrain her panicking, however, reaching the wall had finally broken her self restraint.

"Hmm, we'll have to find a path." James quietly said, while deep in thought.

"How are we supposed to do that?" Xala turned towards James frantically.

"Argus, find a suitable path that we can carry these three up safely." James began looking around to allow Argus to scan the area.

"Argus?" Xala questioned, "What the heck is Argus?"

"Oh yeah, Argus is an artificial intelligence that helps me with tactical information during combat and other missions. He is one of the 26 smart A.I.'s currently serviced, however, that number has probably changed over the years that I have been in Cryosleep." James continued looking around the area for a way out.

"And he can find a way out for us?" Xala asked skeptically.

"Yes, however he doesn't always have something helpful to say." James remembered the counting down that while somewhat useful, had no tactical advantage during the engagement.

"To the South there is an… acceptable path." Argus cut in before James continued his rant.

"What do you mean by acceptable?" James questioned Argus.

"The path has the least chance of you falling to your collective deaths," Argus responded cheerily.

"Great," James turned towards the south, looking for the supposed path. "You're kidding right?"


"That isn't a path, it's a ledge barely wide enough the carry two people," James exclaimed.

"Are you okay James?" Xala was confused by James' conversation with seemingly no one.

"Yeah, there is a path to the south, I'll have you and your friend go up there, while I slowly try to follow you with these two," James started to head over to the ledge.

"Are you sure you can make it up with them on your back," Xala asked worriedly.

"I'll be fine, just don't drop her and we'll get up in no time," James assured her.

"O-okay," Xala was skeptical as to the safety of the path but made her way slowly towards the top, reaching it without much issue, James however wasn't faring as well.

The process of making it up the side of the canyon was very difficult for James. Balancing two people on his shoulders and not having enough room for himself on the ledge made his advance slow. With only one major mishap, which was luckily at the widest point of the ledge, James slowly lied the Talai and Talin on the ground above before pulling himself up as well.

"I'm never carrying anyone in or out of there ever again," James exclaimed as he stretched his sore arms. While they were lighter than he had expected, the awkward positions he had to hold them in definitely put a few kinks in his muscles.

"Hopefully we won't have to," Xala said from her position next two her three friends.

"How far are we from your village?" James asked, looking towards the sun.

"I think we were running for around four hours before we came across the canyon," Xala informed him.

"It will probably take more than double that to get back then." James Picked Talin and Talai up once more. "Let's head out, once the sun is about half way down the horizon, we'll make camp for the night."

"Okay." Xala just wanted to be back in her home as soon as possible.

They had been traveling for about two hours before the sun had even touched the horizon. Throughout the trip, nothing important happened besides Xala and James asking each other questions to get to know the other a little better. James found out that the days were a few hours longer than on Earth, meaning that they still had another two hours before they had to stop.

James was pondering how he was going to find the other segments of the Dreadnought when Xala interrupted his thoughts with another question.

"What did you do for an occupation before you were trapped in the ship?" James didn't mind the questions, in fact he welcomed them in place of the silence.

"I was a soldier mostly." James tried to decide what was safe to tell her.

"Really, what did you do as a soldier?" Xala continued.

"Mostly secret missions, and protective details." James carefully skirted the question. "However, I wasn't only limited to those two." Shiro was referring to him being stationed on the destroyer class Lancelot which was destroyed while during his attempt of protecting it in a Sabre.

"Do you have any cool stories from when you were a soldier?" Xala turned to him now.

"I do, however most of them are considered ghost missions, meaning they never happened according to, well anyone." James looked towards her as they stood among the dense brush and tall green trees.

"Just change the names of the places, and people you fought, that way you aren't talking about a mission, you're telling a story." Xala pushed.

"Hmm, okay, this is a long story however." James chuckled at the fact he was about to tell someone about one of the missions he 'never' took part in. "It all started with this planet coming under attack." James began.

James told Xala an extremely detailed summary of a mission where he was sent on a ghost mission to a planet that had been under siege by Covenant Forces. He spent many months taking out groups of them slowly gaining a reputation among the occupying covenant forces as a devil in the woods. Eventually, his presence was enough to finally scare them off, when he assassinated one of the generals. He found out that the Covenant were highly religious and believed in different kinds of demons, which he of course used to his advantage in his future missions.

"Wow, you definitely didn't mess around did you." Xala admired as she continued walking.

"Yeah, not very much free time to be able to," James responded. "Sadly though I could never get the title of Hyper-Lethal, that was reserved for two amazing Spartans."

"Oh yeah, who were they?" Xala loved learning more about his people and cultures.

"Spartan John-117, A.K.A. Master Chief, and Spartan B-312, I admire both of them equally." James remembered the brief moments that he had met both of them. (Separately)

"They must have been amazing if you're praising them." Xala chuckled.

"They could route entire armies just with their presence, they struck fear into their enemies hearts. I could only hope to hold a candle to their careers." James was almost glowing with passion towards these two.

"It would be cool to meet them." Xala turned her gaze towards James.

"Yeah, they're probably dead now, being gone for that long, so much must have changed." James sadly remarked.

"S-sorry for bringing up a sad topic." Xala quickly said trying to remedy her mistake.

"It's fine, I've been thinking about this for a while now." James replied. Looking at the sky, James realized how much time had passed during only one of his stories.

"We should stop and make camp soon, it's about to get dark." James said as he looked for a clearing nearby.

"Yeah." Xala followed James as he searched for a spot to camp.

Finding a spot, a large clearing 13 meters across surrounded by thick foliage, James set up camp making a small lean-to for the each of them. After that was finished he began collecting wood for a fire.

"I'm going to set up a perimeter so we don't get ambushed during the night, you should get some rest in the meantime," James finished starting the fire and turned to the forest, "Keep an eye on the three over there."

"Don't worry I will," Xala looked towards the largest lean-to that housed her three friends.

Without another word James disappeared into the thick brush that surrounded the small clearing. James had already been gone for ten minutes before she started hearing shuffling in the vicinity.

"Who's there," Xala searched for the sound, which originated from the lean-to. Groans began to echo from the lean-to, surprising Xala. Jumping to her feet, Xala sprinted over to her friends quickly peeking into the area.

"Thank goodness, You're alive." Xala exclaimed as her friends winced at her sudden voice.

"What happened," Talai asked as he slowly pushed himself up into a cross-legged position.

"Yeah, it feels like I was hit by a truck," Kala agreed.

"The last thing I remember is being hit by something big," Talin continued their thoughts.

"Well, all three of you did get thrown around by a mongrel," Xala was still surprised at their sudden awakening.

"So we're dead," Kala sighed before collapsing back onto the floor.

"No, we were saved before we got completely wiped out by it." Xala leant against the pole holding up the lean-to.

"Wha- who would have been anywhere near that place." Talin looked up, surprise written all over his face.

"It's a long story, that he can explain better himself," Xala beckoned the three to follow her to the fire that was in the middle of the clearing. "I don't even know where to start."

Off to the side of the clearing more rustling was heard, the bushes parted, yet nothing could be seen to have parted them.

"Ah, so you finally woke up I see." James deactivated his active-camo, revealing himself.

"What is he doing here," The three jumped at his sudden arrival

"Just passing by, what does it look like," James scoffed as he took a seat at the campfire.

"He saved us from the mongrel," Talin realized.

"Ding ding ding, and whatever that was it definitely didn't want to sit down and die," James sighed.

"Why did you save us if it was so much trouble," Kala questioned.

"Do I need a reason to help you," James stared into the flames of the fire.

"No, but I'm worried that you're gonna use us for some sort of ransom," Kala countered.

"A reasonable thought, however I don't have any idea where I am, so I'm just going to get my bearings then hopefully find the rest of the Dreadnought and it's crew," James shrugged.

"So we don't have to worry about you stabbing us in the backs," Talai interjected.

"I've been traveling with Xala for a few hours already and she's still alive, in fact I was carrying you and the other guy over there," James tried to sound offended.

"That's right I haven't told you their names yet, have I," Xala exclaimed, as Talin and Talai blanched at the reveal.

"Nope," James responded.

"I'm Talai,"

"I'm Kala,"

"I'm Talin,"

"Nice to meet you I'm James, I'm a soldier from my planet that got stranded on your planet around a thousand years ago, how I'm alive I'll never know, but yeah," James introduced himself.

For the next hour stories were shot around the campfire between James and the group. Everything had been great, no fighting, suspicion, or aggression in fact they seemed very interested in his past. Xala had nodded off at the 45 minute mark, understandably due to carrying her friend for quite the distance. His barrier had only had a few birds and other small creatures cross it, so James wasn't very worried. That was until Argus ruined everything-

"Warning, multiple large creatures have crossed the perimeter barrier!"

"What," James exclaimed, surprising the group around him and waking Xala.

"What's wrong," Kala inquired.

"A group of, well... something, crossed the barrier I set up earlier."

"40 meters out," Argus warned. "Heading directly for us."

"Crap, uhh, do we know if their hostile," James quickly got up drawing his now fully charged rifle.

"Behavior points towards a scouting party," Argus informed. "30 meters."

"Okay, just to be safe, you guys get behind me, and if I yell run, what do you do," James tested the teens.

"We run," Xala answered.

"Good, now don't forget that," The Xalins quickly grouped up behind him.

"20 meters, 15 meters," Argus continued.

"Those are some heavy footsteps, how many are there again," James stared forward.

"Four total."

"Great." James stood, waiting for the group to break the bushes. "Are they mounted on horses?"

"Negative." At Argus' response, four bipedal minotaurs broke through the foliage, all but one wielded axes yes plural axes. The last one had a large butcher's knife.

"I'm beginning to see a pattern in the creatures on this planet," James sighed as he prepared for battle"RUN!"

A/N: While annoying I can't stop myself from leaving a cliff hanger, but don't worry next chapter is gonna have a metric ton of crap go down.

It was a little short I'll be honest, but the next chapter is most likely going to be the biggest yet.