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Book: The Nomads and the Mind Machine
Chapter 30: Healing Drugs and Hormones

Sovereign Dug Tihsadeen, wearing nothing but a thin white towel round his waist, dismissed the last of the females.  She turned, politely waggled her black furry buttocks – matted with lubricant, and then strode naked out of the sovereign’s luxurious quarters.

The sovereign turned to Yug Evahsadeen, who was lying on a sofa opposite.  Like the sovereign, Yug was wearing nothing more than a thin white towel.  Behind him the sovereign’s huge collection of wall-mounted battle knives glinted in the soft lighting.  The sovereign smiled broadly, his brown teeth sharp and straight.  “We’ll get the scan results shortly.  Then we’ll know how many offspring we’ve fathered!”

Yug nodded.

The sovereign eyed him up.  “You look confident of winning, Yug.  Do you consider yourself more fertile than I?”

Yug shook his head.  “Of course not.  You’re extreme level of fertility is well-known, and your tens of thousands of offspring prove it.  But I was without relief for an unusually long time.  My sacks were particularly full, and the pressure on delivery was great.  That could put me at an advantage.”

The sovereign laughed.  “It could indeed!  But remember, quality counts more than quantity, and accuracy more than speed.  I impregnate regularly – usually daily.  Experience such as that cannot be learned, only acquired.”

Yug nodded.  “You’ve worked hard to get to your position.  You deserve every impregnation opportunity you are given.”

Sovereign Tihsadeen frowned.  “Your lips a getting a little too close to my anus, Yug.  Do not make contact.”

Yug reacted quickly.  “It was a genuine compliment, sovereign.  Nothing more.  I had no intention of…”

A console on the side of Sovereign Tihsadeen’s armchair chimed.  The sovereign answered.  “What is it?”

A voice, sharp and level, spoke.  “An extraordinary situation has arisen, sovereign.  Your exceptional leadership is required.

“What situation?”

The nomad ships have left subspace.

Sovereign Tihsadeen grunted and got to his feet.  He yelled.  “How can that be?!  The implanted heads were working perfectly!”

All contact was lost with the implanted heads a few minutes ago.  We are investigating why.

“Forget the investigation!  Reverse course.  Take the fleet back to where the nomad ships emerged into normal space.”

Immediately, sovereign.”  The order could be heard being given in the background.  “There is something else I must tell you, sovereign.

“Then tell me!”

The nomad ships’ exit from subspace was sudden.  Many of our ships that were immediately behind the nomad ships were unable to react in time.

“What are you saying?”

More than three-hundred of them were destroyed as they collided with the nomad ships.  Several hundred more were damaged.

The sovereign silenced the communicator and looked at Yug Evahsadeen.  “It looks like the nomads destroyed or disabled their own bio-mind.”

Yug’s discomfort was obvious.  “It appears so, sovereign.”

Sovereign Tihsadeen sat back into his armchair.  “The nomads would not have done so of their own accord.  They revere their bio-minds.  They must have been persuaded.”

Yug spoke.  “I’m not so sure.  The nomads are resourceful and…”

The sovereign roared.  “They are almost completely dependent on their bio-minds, and you know it!  The thought of destroying a bio-mind would not occur to them!”

“Of course not, sovereign.”

The sovereign calmed himself and thought for a moment.  “Persuading nomads to destroy their bio-mind is a monumental task.”  His eyes narrowed.  He stared at Yug.  “Only a top-class bounty hunter from the Palace of Amino would have any hope of success in that regard.”

Yug was staring at the sovereign.  He obviously knew better than to say anything more.

Sovereign Tihsadeen continued.  “Bounty hunters must be onboard the central nomad ship.  Do you not agree, Yug?”

Yug had no choice but to agree.  “That does seem like the most plausible explanation.”

The sovereign slammed his furry fist onto the arm of his chair.  “That is the only explanation!”  He glowered at Yug.  “Is there anything you want to tell me that you didn’t before?”

Yug signed.  “I think one of the bounty hunter ships visited the nomad ship that we penetrated.  But it definitely left before it connected with the other nomad ships.  The ship came to the rescue of the small bounty hunter ship that attacked my ship.  As you know, they both escaped into…”

The sovereign shouted.  “They could have left a contingent behind!”

Yug shuddered.  “That’s possible, sovereign, but…”

“It is more than possible!  It is exactly what has happened!”

“Yes, sovereign.”

Sovereign Tihsadeen sighed.  “I am gravely disappointed, Yug.  Your errors have reduced the chances of success for our mission.  And your exclusion of information concerning the visit of the bounty hunter ship to the nomad ship has led to the destruction of hundreds of our ships and the deaths of thousand of Sadeeni.”

Yug Evahsadeen was visibly shaken.  “Sovereign, I did not think it would come to this!  I was only thinking of your feelings when I…”

The sovereign had activated a control on the arm of his chair.  A double set of doors on the far side of the sovereign’s lavish quarters opened.  Six heavily armed security guards marched in.  Their belts jangled as dozens of knives and other bladed weapons clanged together.  The lead guard spoke.  “What is the problem, sovereign?”

Sovereign Tihsadeen pointed at Yug.  “Yug Evahsadeen has failed us!  He is personally responsible for the deaths of thousands of Sadeeni!”

Yug was desperate.  He stood.  His towel fell to the floor revealing his flaccid but remarkably thick manhood.  The appendage hung limply between his thighs.  “But sovereign, I was only doing what I thought was for the best.  This is a military operation.  Losses must be expected and allowed for!  You must…”

The sovereign interrupted.  “An example must be made.”  He thought for a moment, and then took a deep breath.  “With the authority vested in me by the Sadeeni Council of War I sentence you to immediate gender reassignment.”

Yug shouted.  “No!  You can’t do this!  I only have 76 offspring!”  He stepped towards the sovereign.  “I must father more!  I have yet to reach the numbers required to…”

Two of the guards grabbed Yug, one of them tying up his mouth with a thick gag.  The other guard punched him hard in the stomach.  Yug doubled up, moaning.

The sovereign continued.  “Take him to the secure medical facility.  Tell the medical team to perform the operation without anesthetic.  I want my personal physician, Surgeon Gahsadeen, to perform the operation.  Ensure that it is broadcast live to the whole fleet.”  The sovereign thought for a second.  “And I wish for Yug Evahsadeen to be ripe for impregnation within hours.  They must ensure that the highest doses of healing drugs and hormones are injected into his body.”

The guards nodded.  Two of them grabbed Yug’s feet and lifted him into the air.  Groaning like a puss-laden Trawsomone gunge farmer, Yug was dragged towards the doorway.

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