-Patricio is awake, we must go on, there are still several kilometers to go, -said Victor, while he was shaking his companion.
Patricio, still halfway between sleep and wakefulness, turned round as he lifted and shook one of his arms, trying to push Victor away -. Leave me alone, it is not yet dawn, - he said.
-Damn you, Patrick, get up now; if they find us here, I don't know what they'll do to us, -insisted Victor-. These ugly things hate humans.
-Quiet, we are hundreds of miles away from any of their hives, -he replied, still shaking his arm-. Let me sleep a little longer, until it is light, then we will continue.
Victor sat down again next to Patrick, who continued to sleep, had to turn off the communicator of his helmet so as not to hear the noisy snoring of his companion, which fortunately was silenced by the isolation of the helmet, otherwise it would be heard hundreds of meters away, in the silence of the desert.
His visor monitor indicated that it would be dawn in a couple of hours, the temperature was two hundred and seventy Kelvins. In front of them, the sliding platform was loaded with about three hundred kilograms of kalidon amber. The loot for which they had violated Parliament's ban on travel to Earth.
The Goeis were not exactly careful with security, humans took them by surprise once and they had learned nothing from experience, the planetary defenses did not exist, only the hives were guarded, for such a suspicious race, they were very careless.
There were gigantic windows of entrance to the planet, by which a small ship like the Pericles, could enter, without being detected and if it was flown to low altitude and more than a hundred kilometers of its hives, it could be crossed great part of the planet with relative facility.
The kalidonts, were a species originating from the goei world, and only inhabited the Earth, where they had arrived with them. They were unpleasant and aggressive beasts, living in large herds, which used to roam the desert in the center of the largest of the continents, mostly uninhabited.
Their amber, was a secretion product of a gland that they used in their digestive process and that they expelled in their excretions, it is a doughy and dense mass that was very appreciated in the industry of the illegal drugs, for its aphrodisiac effect. Given the prohibition established by Parliament to enter the solar system and consequently the Earth, as a result of the peace agreements with the Goei, trade with this substance was prohibited. Despite this a small number of rogues were willing to sneak onto the Earth, now Goa, to collect this precious and valuable substance.
-I don't understand, why, if generators can reproduce this stuff, molecule by molecule, then it is so valuable that it is collected on this filthy world, - asked Victor aloud, as he stared at the platform.
-I don't know, the nonsense of the fools who consume it, they say that the one generated is not the same. Shut up now, let me sleep, - exclaimed Patrick.
Collecting the amber was not a pleasant task, first I had to scare off the herd of kalidonts, not an easy task given the tendency of these creatures to violently attack those who approached their territory. To drive them away, stimulators were used to stimulate their nervous system, which could cause them unpleasant pain, while having the second effect of making them loosen their sphincters, leading to the next and less pleasant part of the task which was to rummage through their waste, looking for the amber.
After a whole day of collecting amber, exhausted, in their dirty airtight suits and grateful that they could not smell it, Patricio and Victor, a couple of rascals capable of stealing from their own grandmothers, in their first time venturing into this business, let themselves fall to rest, under some palm trees to wait for the sunrise, to return to their ship, left several miles away from the place so as not to alert the warmongers and make them escape without leaving their precious waste.
The sun was already beginning to rise among the palm trees, when Victor, who had been awake for the last hours, worried about the possibility of being found by the goei, stretched out his hand to shake Patricio again and make him wake up to continue his journey.
-Let's go Patricio, it's already dawn, we must continue, I don't want to stay on this planet for much longer, -he said while shaking the shoulder of his companion, who could be heard snoring thunderously through the communicator of his helmet.
-Well, let me stretch if we are going to continue, -he replied, after yawning for a long time.
They were approaching their ship, when they saw the peculiar figure of one of the goei ships appear behind a large dune. They immediately dropped into the sand and crawled slowly to the top of the dune to get a better view of the situation.
-Damn, the sea cucumbers discovered us, -said Patrick, looking at the ship.
-It's strange, it's only a ship and we haven't seen any other, flying over the desert, - answered Victor. Besides, I don't see any of them around.
They agreed to go round the dune, to avoid approaching the ship and to continue towards the Pericles, which was already a few miles away.
Already in the Pericles, while Patricio was starting the engines, Victor was climbing the sliding platform to the ship, when he heard some strange squeaks behind him and turned around, to see a goei pointing his gun at him, while he continued to emit the strident sounds by which they communicated.
The computer in Victor's suit did not have a translator for the goei language, so he did not understand what the creature was trying to tell him. However, the goei continued to scream loudly and threaten him with its weapon.
At that precise moment, Patrick, who was alerted by the ship's perimeter sensors, after approaching behind the creature's back, hit it with one of the shovels they used to collect the amber, making it fall on its face and drop the weapon, which Victor picked up, almost as a reflex, from the ground.
They pushed back the stunned goei, while pointing their own weapon at him, boarded the Pericles and moved as fast as they could away from the place, leaving the atmosphere and quickly setting a course out of the solar system, towards the nearest bridge.
-You know I was curious to know what the cucumber was saying to me, -said Victor, now that the surprise of the goei was over. So I passed the audio recording of his words through the ship's translator, and you don't know what the bastard was saying to me.
-I have no idea, surprise me, - answered Patrick.
-The damned cucumber, he was complaining to me because we were stealing his amber, the wretch was also coming to collect it, to sell it to human traffickers, who buy it at the limits of the solar system, - he said, and then he let out a loud laugh.