"Come on guys, don't want to be late!" the whispers echoed through the streets and alleys to the homeless children living in Spaceport D-113 on the planet Conventia. Chiropterans, Vortians, Irkens, Polians, Placens, Sodiuns, and all other species besides wove cautiously through crowds and into the back alleys. They didn't want to attract attention after all. That would mean bad things for both the children and the one they were heading towards.
Crowding as far into a back alley as they could, children shuffled for seats, older ones allowing the younger to use their laps as cushions, and taller ones allowing the shorter ones to take closer seats. Some of them had obviously been here before and were surveying the scene with a kind of comfortable familiarity, while some were new here and quivered with barely restrained excitement.
Sitting in the center of the crowd was a thin figure, wrapped in a dirty sheet of canvas that formed a sort of two-layer poncho over their body, another strip of canvas wrapped loosely around the head to hide their face. Despite the shroud around the face, a pair of almost glowing magenta eyes peered out from the shadows. From the top of their head a pair of curly black antenna were visible, the right one slightly crumpled and bent. A pair of clawed, four-fingered, leather-clad hands held themselves in front of the figure's face. The magenta eyes watched until the children finally had all settled and watched the figure with eyes full of curiosity and eager joy.
"Good evening, children." Said the figure, in a voice that sounded female. The children leaned forward and grinned wider, each turning to those next to him and giving them eager looks.
"Good evening, Captain!" they chorused dutifully, still quiet to avoid outside detection.
"What story shall I tell you tonight?" asked the one they called the "Captain". There was a great deal of murmuring as the children talked amongst themselves. Eventually a small Sodiun child who had been clearly been there before raised his claw. Everyone quieted down and the Captain nodded at the young thing.
"How about the story of the crew of the Swallowtail?" he called out. A happy hum of talk began among the children, with the phrases 'good idea' and 'that sounds great' reaching the ears of the Captain. With what appeared to be a smile, only visible in the large magenta eyes, the Captain nodded.
"Very well. It's a good story, and the children who haven't been here many times before have not heard it yet." The Captain said, antenna twitching, "Okay then, children, we'll start at the beginning..."
:END OF PROLOGUE:
Hello readers! CheshireCatGrin here! Thank you for reading my story, first of all. I hope you enjoy it. For now I think a small explanation is needed.
We all know what Irkens and Vortians are. Chiropterans, Polians, Placens, and Sodiuns were all made-up by me. Here's a small description of what each species looks like:
Chiropterans (pronounced 'k-eye-rahp-tear-ins') are like anthropomorphic bats. They don't have separated wings coming off their backs. They have long arms and comparatively short legs. A flap of skin runs between their arms and their sides, forming their wings. The flap goes from their wrists to their ankles. They usually have small holes near the waist so their can tie some sort of pants on. They have small tails that are also connected to their legs by flaps of skin. They have large, oddly shaped noses and four eyes. They also have a pair of large ears off the tops of their heads. Their fingers are webbed. They are covered in fur except for the flaps of skin.
Polians (pronounced 'pall-ee-uhns') are like salamanders that walk upright on their back legs. They come in any pattern and color you would see on salamanders. They have large eyes and four fingers and toes. They lay eggs instead of having babies, and must lay their eggs in water. Some even have big frilly gills. They breathe through their skin and can lose and regenerate their tails.
Placens (pronounced 'place-eens') are krill-like creatures. They are mostly see-through with each individual having different colored and patterned internal organs. The only way to really tell any of this species apart is by their organ colors and patterns. They have lots of legs, segmented exoskeletons, antennae, and large black eyes.
Sodiuns (pronounced 'so-dee-uhns') are crystalline creatures. They take a variety of forms and colors, but always are made of crystals of some sort. They have multiple pairs of "eyes" shown by small lights within their bodies that are the exact opposite color as their crystals. A lot of them have some sort of carvings in them, their version of tattoos.