She took another bite from the tasteless ration stick and chased it with a swig of water. She frowned at the stick. These may sustain life but they sure as hell wouldn’t qualify for fine cuisine.
Her ears were assaulted by an earsplitting roar. Something struck the side of the life pod and sent it tumbling over and over. Gina was tossed around in the interior like a rag doll in a dryer. When the craft stopped rolling it was upside down. Again a tooth rattling roar came from outside and something struck the side of the pod sending it rolling once more. This time she managed to grab hold of a chair and controlled her tumble.
The ship ceased its wild rotations with the hatch on top. Gina opened it and stormed out like an angry hornet defending its disturbed nest. The creature she faced was the most horrible sight she had seen in her entire young life. She estimated its head was thirty feet above the ground. Its open jaws revealed row upon row of sharp teeth. Two eyes, each half the size of her body, glared at her. The beast had green tough looking hide. It had a long tail, two powerful looking legs and smaller arms midway up its torso with deadly appearing talons.
Brushing a lock of disheveled hair from her eyes, Gina glared at the animal. Anger and frustration took control. She splayed her feet wide. “You will not destroy my ship you damned ugly brute! Ever since the Men-gar I’ve been spoiling for a fight. Something to take my aggressions out on. You’re fuckin it!” she screamed.
Fire snapped and popped between her fingers. She pointed the digits at the beast. Flaming balls streaked across the distance to explode in the creature’s face. It roared in surprise and pain. Its head darted forward and its jaws opened wide. Its putrid breath made her gag and sent her hair swirling. More fire burst from her fingers. This time flaming balls burst deep in the beast's open maw. The roar cut short when the creature’s jaws snapped shut to extinguish the burning flames in it mouth.
“Take that asshole. I may be little but I have a vicious deadly bite.”
The beast took two steps back. She launched more fiery balls. It screamed in anguish vanishing for a moment in a hail of intensely burning softball sized globes. The acrid smell of burning flesh filled the air. With its entire body engulfed in flames the creature voiced a final shriek of agony. It toppled to the side creating a huge splash of muddy water that drenched her. The creature lay still.
Gina remained stiffly erect for some time waiting for the it to rise. She pulled her drenched hair back from her face. With one hand she wiped the mud from her eyes. The sudden silence was eerie. “I think its dead Gina,” Grant said.
“I guess that answers the question of life existing on this planet.”
The pod shifted under her. She gazed down and saw a huge gash in the side the creature had made. The craft was in deeper water and it poured into the gaping hole. She leaped back inside and in dismay saw water already sloshed across the floor. Grabbing the four packs she climbed out, slid down the side of the rapidly sinking ship and swam to shore.
She sat in the sand breathing hard from exertion and the energy expended from forming her flaming balls. The pod settled deeper and finally sunk beneath the surface. “So much for my home.” Turning to the side, she glared at the dead animal. “Grant we need to find shelter.” She glanced up at the sinking sun. “Soon,” she added. “I don’t fancy sleeping here on the beach and having my slumber interrupted by one of those.” She pointed at the dead beast.
“If you wake up before it eats you,” Grant teased.
Gina was in no mood for her AI’s humor. “I’m assuming you’ll remain alert and warn me before something like that occurs. I’ll remind you that if I perish so do you.”
“I’m aware of that and will remain vigilant while you sleep.”
“Thank you,” she said sarcastically.
She gathered the packs, two to an arm. “Something above the ground in the trees for tonight I think.”
“I agree. I will help you search.”
She settled into the branches of the selected tree. Her nightshirt was a shambles after tumbling and rolling inside the pod. “While I’m sleeping I want you to access your archives and look for the methods of tanning and curing hide. I’m going to need clothes soon and that beast out there has a lot of hide I can use.”
“I will do so. You need sleep Gina. It has been a big day.”
“Goodnight Grant. Talk to you in the morning. Remember to wake me if danger threatens.”