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A note from Viirin

I wish I could draw so I could show you what Sting does. Would have a graphic violence warning if I had art.

The kids... well, you called the young of goats and humans kids, but not spiders. Well, they were partially human so let's just go with it. The kids were behind the buildings from the perspective of the road leading into the front of the village, except for Cletus and Sting. Djraine wanted to stay up with us too, but I sent her to hide as well. Ten drider hiding behind a few buildings all over the walls and ground wasn't an easy task, but it was necessary. If everyone was here and out, who knows what would happen?

I tried to keep everyone calm, though I think they all sensed my own anticipation and anxiety, and I had to calm them down while also riling them up. I guess I still had my problems from before- death didn't cure me. Well, I guess it was more that office lady didn't! All schizophrenia really was, was increased capacity for pattern recognition and neural connections. Then again, that's what genius was, too. Heck, even my own psychologist had pretty much agreed with me when I told her that. Hopefully those powers would help me in this new world. While I still sat in waiting, I thought about clones. Some fun thought experiments back on Earth asked the question 'if you have sex with a clone of yourself, is it gay sex or masterbation'? The answer was actually pretty obvious, which I think would explain why I still remembered everything and still bore my mental illnesses. Clones exist in nature. My previous mother, since I guess I didn't have one in this world (Was I divinely created? Would that explanation count here?) was a fraternal twin that happened to also be identical. Not a surprise, really. A zygote breaks and forms two people and not one, though there was only one egg. If the clone's brain had an imprinted copy of the person's neural net and pathways and shared senses in real time, then both would be the same person, and then it would be self-pleasure. If the clones were natural clones or at least acted like it, well, the answer reverses. Not that there's anything wrong with either, I guess. Whatever floats your goat. *bleat*

Luckily for my own derangement, a slight hill that the road curved around got my attention. I heard marching on the other side of it. A heavily armored man was in front, holding some strange-looking... I couldn't tell if it was a boomerang, sword, or club. Behind him were two armored men who wore similar armor to the commander we ate, though there were designs on the shoulder plates, and they had spears. There were three others, though they only wore some sort of leather armor designed similar to brigandine.

"Is there something I can help you gentlemen with?" I asked the obvious leader.

The look of revulsion overtook him instantly, his entire face and even body language showed me that he was not someone who felt like talking even slightly. "Skimatsi cuhauwj kai zoak beasts!"

The brainless piles of experience points flung themselves forward, but the lead unit didn't do anything except scream and look like it was about to vomit. "Free for all! Dinner for everyone!" I screamed, sending images through the hivemind to my children, letting them know that it was okay to kill everybody and make them watch as we ate their pack members. Cletus skittered sideways, though not as fast as I'd think would have been necessary in order to dodge the spear thrust, but maybe it was the spearman's own similar expectation that was to blame. Sting grabbed the spear aimed at him and pulled upward, sliding his hand along its length as he lurched forward. I had seen him fight a large group of crickets when he was only an Emperor Scorpion, but I think he would get more impressive in this form.

All the drider pouring out over the buildings, surrounding and rushing into the village center where we were was a beautiful thing to behold, though someone was missing. It probably wasn't beautiful to the yucky things that were stupid enough to pester us and scare our friends, but that wasn't our concern. It was Malas. Malas wasn't with the others, and I had to look and see through his own eyes where he was. He was wandering towards the road! Laina, where are you? Go get your brother!

The leader raised its strange weapon, and saw a drider off by itself. The thing probably knew it wasn't going to end well, but it threw the device- and it spun through the air vertically, similar to how a boomerang flies horizontally. When it got up to where Malas was, it... I had to confirm this later somehow. It seemed to pass through him! The One Who Pukes For No Reason looked confused, too. I looked over at Sting, who had gotten a few injuries in his fight somehow, but then I saw his finishing blow- clasping both of his enemy's hands, puncturing its face with his stinger, and using his massive claws to cut through its left leg and right side below the ribs and above the hip, all at the same time.

One of the birds the animals were riding on lay dead already, though I'm not sure why. They had all run off the last time, but I'm not sure why. I'll have time to figure it out later. The leader threw something at one of my other children, though I'm not sure what it was. I heard a scream, but I couldn't deal with that now- worrying about people, even someone you care about more than yourself, just isn't something you can do in battle. That's why so many soldiers don't realize their comrades are dead until after bullet hail lets up for a reload. I threw my own weapon at the lead barf bag. It hit, but it didn't really matter because it was wearing metal armor and I only threw a piece of wood. It didn't look any cleaner, but at the same time, I did see some dirt come off of it. The weapons we had were probably not going to work against that thing- it was too armored and had some sort of special equipment. None of it seemed to work yet, but that wasn't the point.

I ran up to it; the other things were distracted. Sting went after his second target, and I let him know I'd want one of the weak ones to be kept alive. I tried to punch the thing in its face, but it leaned back and avoided the blow. While my punch was falling, I scratched my other arm at the ground, and spun around as soon as I felt something in either hand. I felt the wood I was reaching for, and hit the screamer over and over, most of the attacks being blocked. I had heard two dings in my head, but I ignored them both for now. While the messages dinged, I was distracted, and the monster I was trying to defeat reached out and grabbed the inner curve of my robe, forcing it open. It stared at my chest, and then reached to its side and tried to pull a curved knife out of a saddle sheath.

That's when I saw Djraine, my wonderful... pet/daughter. She had a blade of some kind, though I'm not sure what. I didn't see it. I did, however, see the thrusting motion her arm made as she stabbed the thingie in its back as it faced me. Her face was bleeding, and it was obvious her jaw was at least fractured and a few teeth and a fang was missing. The bird the creature was riding on just... stood there. This was odd behavior for any animal, and I was really getting curious about its behavior now, even more now that I've seen a few of them. All of these were yellow; I had only ever seen one red one- or at least that was true so far. Out of the six birds and six riders, one of the least armored ones was alive like I requested, and four of the birds were still alive and present. The birds hadn't even tried to run away.

I had Aneis wrap up the survivor so it couldn't move anymore no matter how it tried, but we left its head alone so it could talk to me if I wanted it to, and it was willing. It wasn't willing, but I also wouldn't let it escape. Either it would eventually change its mind, or it would die, and we would eat it. However, now was the time to move. We wouldn't move away from our cave- we had worked too hard on it. I needed to move on to wherever the leader came from and have a chat with whoever it was that ruled it... I was hoping it had a brain able to hold thoughts within it. I should really stop thinking 'sentient' when I mean 'sapient'. So many people back on Earth made that mistake, or maybe not a mistake, but just an unofficial expanded use for a more common word. If whoever the leader was was sapient, then hopefully they'd also be open-minded.

Djraine wanted to come, but I sent her back with Laina. Sun had asked Esmerelda if she could have some of the herbs for Laina to heal wounds, but she was turned down. The birds were brought back to the cave too, though they were supposed to be kept outside in a pen made of bushes and webbing. Cletus wanted to come with me too, for some reason, but I wouldn't let him. He should get to know his new family more, and hopefully get to crafting things- and that went for Aneis too, though her crafts would be pretty different. Three of Shore's legs were broken, and one was cut in half... he was able to walk still, but at a much slower pace. Malas was herded by Mels since Laina was busy, so I just took Dulcet and Sun with me. We cut the webbing off of the door and window frames, but didn't actually clear it off. It was more structurally sound with it intact! Everything could open again, though. Some of the food we acquired had to be eaten soon, so we feasted when the jumi weren't looking. The rest of the loot would be dealt with at home, though not by me.

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About the author

Viirin

Bio: I'm on Patreon (and with your help I can increase the quality and volume of my work for your enjoyment) here: https://www.patreon.com/Viirin

And the Discord I created for the players of my games, readers of my books, and readers of my comics can come together as a community is available here: https://discord.gg/ebTGMhf

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