Adagio 3 – Homo Lupines
It was during the founding years of the Galtorr Imperium that genetically altered mutates, more commonly called “Freaks” were created in the laboratories of Faulkner Genetics. The lessons of Dr. Frankenstein were completely lost on those poor doody-heads. Most artificial races were created to fill very specific slots in the colonial plan. They first got away with monster making in the forgotten past. When the Galtorrian lizard people and the Earther primates were both struggling to make their way into space, they somehow managed to splice their genomes together to make one race that had the worst qualities of both. This melded race, of uncertain origin, is probably the fault of early Earther explorers who found the Galtorrian homeworld, and scared out of their pants by the warlike reptilians, began crazy-mad experiments the way witless Earth humans do. Having a mutual genetic link in the Galtorrian Lizard-Men meant that both the Galtorrs and the Earthers could feel like part of one people. Well, that was the big idea, anyway. These masters, though, having established an artificial ruling race, soon found use for slave races.
They created the tiny, elfin Peris of the planet Djinnistan to do immense computations in their overlarge heads with an edge of extreme creativity. The winged Eagle-men, also of Djinnistan, were used for jungle warfare and air patrol duty. They created the simian Security Beasts of the planet Karridon for obscure reasons, something about the Earther obsession with gorilla-like monkey violence. Even the speedy Longlegs of the planet Nestor’s Palace were not a natural race and kept as work slaves.
Some science geek (not like me, I’m a nerd rather than a geek, I have never eaten a light bulb) in the days of the Gene-Splicer Renaissance thought it was a natural idea to combine the genes of Earth men with the genes of Earth dogs. They reasoned that since dogs were man’s best friend, they would make a race of friendly, loyal dog-men. They could then be their own best friends! What a stupid concept! They overlooked the fact that all dogs on Earth originated from wolves. Wolves, if you didn’t already know, get hungry enough to eat you.
With my handy telescope I saw the Lupin Rebellion. Waves of wolfmen turned on their masters and stole spacecraft and weapons. Blood was shed as they threw off their collars and turned to wolf-pack piracy among the stars. They were carnivores and totally uncontrollable.
The furry man-wolves formed fleets of corsair raiders known collectively as Stardogs and laid waste among poorly protected colonies. Then, during the Second Unification War the Galtorr Jihad launched their war fleets against Stardog colonies and outposts, nearly making the Homo Lupines race extinct. The Galtorrian hero, Sir Echo Saurol, had every intention of wiping them out like fleas in a flea-powder factory. Only the Lupins who fled into deep space survived the wrath of the Galtorrians.
The first Aero-base, the sentient starport called Frieda, had originally been a Galtorrian Exploration Command Center. A surviving pack of Lupins and Stardogs descended upon it and slew everyone in the planetary command before fleeing further into the unknown. It had, however, been 329 years since the attack when the Aero brothers landed and claimed the base. They knew nothing of the Stardog Freaks and their Lupin Rebellion. All Ged knew was that Lupins were a creature he had hunted before, a very intelligent and dangerous creature to hunt. Soon both brothers would learn more than they ever wanted to know about Lupins, especially the one that had been marooned on the Don’t Go Here Grange station.