Author Topic: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion  (Read 4331 times)

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Offline Phoenix004

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Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« on: March 02, 2015, 08:44:32 PM »
It's been a VERY long time in the making, but I've finally decided to bring back a rewritten and (hopefully) improved version of a fic I wrote years ago. I doubt most of you are familiar with the original version, since it's been years since I've worked on it, but there were a number of mistakes to correct and minor changes I wanted to make (resetting the Animorphs timeline back to the 90s instead of modern day, youthing my character to be the same age as the Animorphs, etc.)

If this is your first time reading, all you really need to know is that it's basically a self-insert fic. If I continue the series long enough, I'll be covering various key points of the Animorphs series, as well as some original plots of my own.

Anyway, I hope you guys enjoy and please feel free to comment in the feedback thread or just PM me directly. I always enjoy brainstorming new ideas and appreciate constructive criticism.

Important note: The only change I have made to the Animorphs is making the characters start off as 16 years old instead of 13.

Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion

CHAPTER 1: Animorph’s Wish

(MIKE’S POV)

“Ram the Bladeship.”

That was the sentence that ended my childhood. It was also the end of the longest (and quite possibly the best) book series I had ever read. Of course, there are people who disagree with that.

“Seriously Mike? No way is that the best cliffhanger ever.” My brother Stephen argued.

“You can’t argue with the blind loyalty of childhood nostalgia,” I replied.

I’m Mike by the way. I’m twenty one years old, about average height and a little overweight, although not as much as I used to be thanks to the past two years of karate lessons. I have brown eyes and I keep my dark brown hair short because I’m too lazy to put serious effort into styling it. I also wear glasses because I’m short-sighted and I don’t trust contacts or laser eye surgery. I’m still holding out hope that cybernetic eyeballs become available in the near future.

The important thing is that I am a 100% devoted Animorphs fan. For many years now I have been loyal to the book series that has inspired me like no book series ever has. Since I was eight years old I have followed Jake, Marco, Cassie, Rachel, Tobias, and Ax (Aximili-Esgarouth-Isthil) by reading about their exciting and unpredictable adventures. I have read through the good times and the bad times, only to be left with K.A. Applegate finally ending the series with the dreaded cliff-hanger.

At least that’s what I thought years back when I first read the ending. I’ve grown up slightly since then and realised that it was probably the best possible way to end the series. Well written, suspenseful all the way through and was certainly fun to read. As evidenced by many bad fanfics out there, nobody likes to read a fairy tale ending. Despite all that, something still felt a little off about the ending, although I could never quite put my finger on what it was.

My brother and I continued our friendly argument for a while about books and TV shows that ended with evil cliff-hangers. I honestly can’t recall how we landed on that subject. Yeah, it went on like that for a while before we gave up and continued with our evening. We often hang out together when we don’t have other plans. Ste playing some MMORPG, me on my DS, my laptop or the Wii. Either that or we’d watch something on his giant TV and have random conversations.
We were watching Supernatural, but I’d already seen the latest episode so my mind started to wander. Our conversation had got me thinking about Animorphs for the first time in a while though, I hadn’t re-read them in years. Some people might have thought it strange that I still enjoyed a book series originally written for kids, but no matter how old I get Animorphs will always hold a special place in my heart. Animorphs #5 The Predator was the first book I ever read for fun and the series inspired my interest in animals, which clearly had an impact on my life since I now work part time at a small zoo. And yes I do sometimes try to acquire the animals; you know you’d do it too!

The Animorphs series also got me into writing my own stories, although I’ve never been very successful with them. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some cool ideas, but I never seem to be able to stay focused on one long enough to finish it. My laptop is full of half-finished stories. Everything from superheroes and teenage spies to vampires and time travel.

As the closing credits of the episode started to play, I glanced at my watch and cursed when I saw it was gone 1am. I often stay up later than that, but I had work the next day and would obviously have to be up early. I quickly said goodnight to Ste and left.

As I climbed into bed, I couldn’t help thinking that somehow the way the series had ended wasn’t quite right. The Yeerks may have been defeated, but the Animorphs somehow became victims as well. Maybe it’s a little silly to think of it that way, but those fictional kids had been such a big part of my life, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for them.

I remember my last thoughts before I lost consciousness were: I wish I could have been there with the Animorphs; maybe I could have made a difference.

It was just a stray thought, a slightly childish daydream of someone who never completely grew out of imagining worlds full of aliens, spaceships and adventure. I’d always felt like a bit of a misfit, a geeky loner. It seems foolish now looking back, knowing just how weird my life was about to get. Because in the words of the immortal Fresh Prince of Bel-Air; my life was about to get flipped turned upside down…
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
http://animorphsforum.com/index.php?topic=10876.msg860745#msg860745

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2015, 09:16:41 PM »
CHAPTER 2: Ellimist and the Rules of Engagement

(MIKE’S POV)

I awoke to the morning sunlight beaming down on my face. Groaning and rubbing the sleep out of my eyes, I resigned myself to the fact it was time to get up for work. Then I opened my eyes. Suddenly, work was the last thing on my mind. You know that feeling you get sometimes when you wake up and aren’t sure where you are? Well this was kind of like that, except that I genuinely had no idea where I was. And I hadn’t even been drinking the night before.

I stared at the strange room for a few moments, taking everything in. It was surprisingly plain, just an average sized bedroom with a desk, chair, wardrobe and the bed I was currently lying in. There was no carpet, wallpaper or even curtains covering the large open window. The lack of decoration and furnishings gave it the look of a house whose occupants had just moved out, or were just about to move in.

Needless to say, I was rather confused by this point. This certainly wasn’t my bedroom, or the room of any house I was familiar with. A number of theories leaped to mind, each as insane as the last. I tried my best to ignore alien abduction and focus on the slightly more realistic idea of terrestrial kidnapping. Could I have been kidnapped while I was asleep? It didn’t seem likely considering I wasn’t restrained and both the door and window were open, but how else could I have ended up there?

Seeing that I was still in my pyjamas, I decided to check the wardrobe to see if my captor had left me any clothes to wear. I opened it and saw various shirts hanging up on one side, with piles of trousers on the other. I also noticed a mirror on the inside of the door, and found myself staring at a reflection that wasn’t my own.

“What the hell!?” I cried out, leaping away from the mirror in surprise.

The image reflected in the mirror also took a startled jump backwards. It was my reflection; the face in the mirror was one I recognised from photographs… taken in high school. The face in the mirror, my face, couldn’t have been older than sixteen.

“This is impossible…” I whispered. I noticed then that even my voice sounded younger; slightly higher pitched than it had been the previous night.

“Not impossible Mike, just highly unlikely.” The voice came from behind me.

I turned swiftly round to face the intruder, instinctively adopting a defensive position as my Karate instructor had taught me. A small part of me noticed that was stance was off, but I figured my kidnapper wouldn’t know that. I just prayed whoever it was wasn’t armed; otherwise this would be a short fight. I needn’t have worried.

There was a man standing before me, an elderly man who certainly didn’t look like a typical kidnapper. He was tall and very thin, with wrinkled skin, sky blue eyes and long flowing hair and beard, both of which were a silvery grey colour. His kind face and smiling eyes gave him the appearance of a loving grandfather. Besides his remarkable resemblance to Gandalf from the Lord of the Rings films, he looked quite ordinary. Except for the fact that his skin was glowing blue.

“Good morning Mike,” he held up a hand in greeting. He gave a small, satisfied smile, as if he was genuinely glad to see me.

Now when I say his skin glowed, I mean literally. He looked like a cartoon character who’d just swallowed plutonium. The now visible palm of his right hand was the same colour as his wise eyes. I could tell it wasn’t just painted on either; it almost looked like the glow was emanating from within his body.

“What the hell is going on here? Who are you? What are you?” I couldn’t help staring in astonishment at the strange, sapphire coloured man.

“We are known by hundreds of names, across thousands of worlds throughout this universe and others like it,” he explained. He had a deep voice, with no obvious accent, that matched his ‘old wise man’ look. “But you know me as the Ellimist.”

If I hadn’t just been turned into a teenager, I might have laughed.

“Prove it.” I challenged. In hindsight, perhaps not the smartest thing to say to a near omnipotent being. Also a little redundant considering most kidnappers don’t consume radioactive waste or possess anti-ageing technology. What can I say; I’m not a morning person.

There was no flash of light or gradual transition from one place to another, but as the words left my lips I instantaneously found myself not in the room anymore. No bed, no wardrobe, no crazy old man, not even a floor under my feet. I was now weightless, floating through nothingness, surrounded by darkness. Far away I saw tiny specks of light, the stars. There was something else too, much larger and much closer than the distant alien suns.

It was a huge sphere, bigger than anything I could ever have imagined possible. Mostly blue in colour, but covered in huge patches of greenish brown and white. I immediately recognised it from school textbooks and sci-fi shows. The gigantic ball I was looking at was the Earth itself!

I let out a gasp of amazement, but no sound left my lips. Of course, there was no air in the vacuum of space, and yet I felt no need to draw breath. If my home planet hadn’t been suspended in front of me, I might have been more impressed at the fact that I no longer required oxygen.

Just as I was starting to worry how long I could survive without an atmosphere protecting me, I found myself back in the unknown house, just as suddenly as I had left it.

“Now do you believe?” He asked with a sly grin.

Sherlock Holmes once said ‘when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.’ Five minutes earlier I’d have said it was completely impossible to be instantly teleported into space and back again, just like it was beyond impossible for the man standing in front of me to be the Ellimist. He’s a bloody fictional character for God’s sake! However, the highly improbable had had indeed happened, and there was only one being I knew of who had that kind of power. There was no point denying it any longer; Gandalf the Blue was in fact the Ellimist, a supposedly fictional being with extraordinary, godlike abilities.

“Yes,” I confessed, still trying to absorb the news. “I believe you.”

A million questions now raced through my mind all at once. Why was he here? Why was I here? Where was here exactly? And what did the most powerful being in the universe want with me?

“All fine questions,” Ellimist replied to my thoughts as though I had spoken them aloud. I suppose to him there was little different between a voiced question and a silent one. “I am here because it is necessary; you are here because I have summoned you. We are in a small structure in a patch of woodland on the outskirts of the Animorph’s hometown. We have brought you here because they need your help.” It didn’t escape my attention that the Ellimist randomly switched between first and third person when referring to himself, just as he often did in the books.

“Who? The Animorphs?” I almost laughed.

“Yes Mike, I have brought you here because the Animorphs need you.”

“What do they need me for?” I asked. “They defeated the Yeerks, became allies of the Andalites and then went and got themselves a nice little grave in the vacuum of deep space, everyone’s happy.” I added sarcastically.

The Ellimist was not amused. He shook his head.

“No Mike, that was not supposed to happen. Think of all the people in the series who died in vain, deaths that could have been prevented. Rachel, Tom, the Auxiliary Animorphs, and not forgetting seventeen thousand, three hundred and seventy-two defenceless Yeerks, who died when the main pool was flushed. And others too, you could save them all Mike. Or will you leave them to die when they could live?”

The Ellimist was right of course. How could I live with myself knowing that I had abandoned thousands of people to their deaths? Besides, wasn’t this what I had been wishing for the night before?

“What can I do to help Ellimist?” I sighed.

“Today happens to be the day the Animorphs meet Elfangor and receive the morphing power, but this time you are going to be there too Mike. You are going to become an Animorph.” He told me like it was the most natural thing in the world.

“Me? Become an Animorph?” I grinned excitedly. The very thing I had been dreaming of for two-thirds of my life was actually happening!

“It is what you have always wanted is it not?”

“Yes Ellimist, I always wished I could be an Animorph. Not that I ever expected my wish to come true, but I’ll do it anyway. I can’t let all those people die.” I told him. I was trying to play it cool but could barely conceal my excitement at the thought of being able to morph! “By the way Ellimist, where am I exactly?” I asked while looking around the unknown room. “And what’s with the lack of decoration?” The room was almost empty aside from a bed, a wardrobe, a desk and a picture of a tiger on the right side wall. Wait, had that picture even been there when I woke up?

“As I said before Mike, we are in the woods beside the town where the Animorphs live.” He answered. “And it is to be your new home. You will live in this house in Tobias’ meadow until the end of the series. This place is hidden from passing eyes, so you won’t have any unexpected guests. As for the absence of décor, I assumed you would prefer to decorate it yourself.”

“Creating a house in the middle of the woods just for me? What happens after I leave? You putting this place up on the market?” I laughed. 

“If and when we believe you have fulfilled your purpose here, you will be automatically transported back to your own universe at the point at which you left. It will be as if you never left at all; your family will never know you were gone.” He explained.

“What about…” I hesitated. “What happens if I die here? Will I go back? Or will I…” I froze. Somehow I already knew the answer. I didn’t feel much like laughing anymore either.

“I’m sorry Mike,” he answered solemnly.

“So, um, what am I supposed to live on while I’m here exactly?” I mainly brought it up to change the subject, but I was honestly curious. “Any chance you’ve given me my own limitless bank account to enjoy while I’m here?”

“Electricity and other utilities will be provided for you, but apart from that you are on your own I’m afraid.”

“I know it’s not an issue for omnipotent beings, but us mere mortals need food occasionally.”

The Ellimist raised his glowing hands, conjuring up a small stack of American bank notes and piece of paper out of thin air. He handed them to me and I took them without saying a word.

“The currency should suffice for a short time, until you can find a way to provide for yourself. I have also given you a list of rules that Crayak and I have agreed on, so read them carefully. If you break a rule, all of your time in this universe will be erased.”

“So no pressure then…” I muttered. “Oh, and what’s with me being back to pre-drinking age?”

“Well you can hardly expect to befriend the Animorphs as an adult. You may also see it as a sort of camouflage: Controllers aren’t likely to see a teenager as threat.” Ellimist explained.

I was far from happy with the arrangement, but was hardly in a position to argue with an omnipotent being. Not to mention the fact that he actually made a valid argument.

“I must bid you farewell for now Mike. The other Animorphs will be at the Mall at 7 O’clock tonight. We wish you the best of luck.” There was a blinding flash of light. The Ellimist was gone. What a show off…

I sat down heavily on the bed, trying to absorb the shock of what had just happened. ‘We do not interfere with the affairs of other species.’ That was what the Ellimist used to say in the books. So much for that theory.

I took several deep breaths to try and calm myself down and looked at the list that the Ellimist had given me.

Rules for Mike the Animorph:

1) You cannot give away any specific information about the future of the series to the Animorphs.

2) Your fellow Animorphs are forbidden to read books based on future events.

3) You cannot reveal the location of the Time Matrix to the other Animorphs.

4) If you die in this universe, you will also cease to exist in your own universe.


The final rule had the most impact on me. Would my family ever discover what had happened to me? Would the Ellimist even let me say goodbye to them? I tried not to think about it too much. I had to focus if I wanted to get out of this alive.

I folded the paper in half and shoved it in my pocket. I then glanced at my watch which said it was 10:03am. That meant I had another nine hours until I had to be at the Mall. So I decided to have a look round my new home.

There wasn’t much to it to be honest; the ‘house’ only had three rooms: the bedroom, a bathroom, and a final room that doubled as a kitchen and small dining area. All of them were as empty as the bedroom, containing only the essential things (fridge, oven, chairs, etc.) which would be difficult to carry or have delivered to the middle of the woods.

The only noteworthy thing in the entire building was the framed tiger picture in my bedroom, the same one I had in my room back in the real world. It was the only source of decoration in the house, but the thing that grabbed my attention was a note, folded neatly and tucked behind the frame. Curiously, I unfolded the page and read the following:

Instructions for hidden wall safe (please destroy once memorised).

1) Remove framed picture from wall.

2) Press both of your hands against the wall and say ‘Animorph’ (the sensors inside the safe will only respond to your hand prints and voice).

3) A large camera lens will emerge from the wall; look through it with both eyes for a few seconds until a thought speech speaker tells you that the retinal scan is complete.

4) A number pad should now appear. Type in a twelve digit code to use for future access and don’t forget it!

5) A sensor should now appear and scan you briefly. Remain still until the thought speech speaker tells you that the DNA scan is complete.

6) If the safe’s sensors are satisfied, the wall will open up to reveal a large hollowed out section of the wall. Inside you should find your entire collection of Animorphs books. You can also use it to hide other important objects should you feel the need to do so…


I got the feeling that he was trying to tell me something with that last part, but I shrugged it off. I followed the Ellimist’s instructions and got my copy of Animorphs #1 The Invasion out of the safe. Then I began to read it very slowly; I didn’t want to miss a single detail.
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
http://animorphsforum.com/index.php?topic=10876.msg860745#msg860745

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2015, 11:51:27 AM »
CHAPTER 3: Six Normal Mall Rats

(MIKE’S POV)

“Bollocks!” I hissed as a glance at my watch showed it was already 6:55pm. “How could I have been so stupid?” I cursed under my breath as I quickly paced around the town’s shopping mall. Why did I have to have such a bad sense of timing? I prayed I wasn’t already too late.

I hadn’t been having the best of days to be honest. For one thing I was wearing clothes I was sure I’d thrown in the rubbish years ago, but of course the clothes I’d been wearing yesterday wouldn’t have fit my sixteen year old body (I wasn’t exactly a skinny teenager). Instead I was wearing a baggy navy blue T-shirt with a picture of a dolphin on the front and a pair of black sweatpants from the wardrobe full of clothes the Ellimist had provided. If it hadn’t been warmer than I was used to outside, I would have bought a decent pair of jeans as soon as I entered the mall.

My next problem was that I didn’t know my way around town. Fortunately I had made it out of the woods without too much trouble, only to realise that I was completely lost. I’d spent the entire afternoon wandering around trying to familiarise myself with the place, as it seemed likely that I was going to be there for a while. I stopped by a Burger King for lunch and was stunned by the size of the cups. I think I even stared at a college student who ordered a large Coke (with a cup the size of a small bucket) and proceeded to go back for a free refill after he’d gulped the whole thing down. Americans really don’t do anything halfway when it comes to food and drink.

Anyway, after pretending to be tourist who’d lost his parents, I managed to get directions to the shopping mall from a kind elderly couple. It was a little annoying hearing them talk to me as if I were a child, but I was grateful for their help all the same.

The final problem I was having was deciding how exactly to approach the other Animorphs, an issue I had been struggling with all day. Even though I was technically their age now, they still wouldn’t want to walk through an abandoned construction site at night with some random stranger. Then again, Tobias barely knew the others and he still got to tag along. This made me realise that Tobias was my best bet, assuming I could find and befriend him in the next five minutes.

The main flaw in my plan was that I didn’t know exactly what Tobias looked like. The only thing distinctive about his appearance was his untidy dirty blonde hair. Instead I tried to think of what he might be doing in the mall. I knew Tobias enjoyed reading, so I found the nearest bookshop to the video game arcade (where I knew Jake and Marco would be) and went inside.

Fortunately for me, there were only five other people in the shop. Other than the sales assistant at the till, there was an old man looking at some classic novels, a young couple in the reference section, and a boy looking at science fiction.

He was about average height; he had brown eyes, dirty blonde hair that stuck up in all directions and an almost dreamy expression on his face, as if he were lost in his own little world. I was almost positive it was Tobias; but almost positive wasn’t good enough, I had to be sure. After all, the fate of a whole fictional universe was depending on me getting this right.

I took a deep breath and casually walked up to him, praying I wouldn’t blurt out something stupid like an excited fanboy meeting one of his childhood heroes. Deliberately ignoring the fact that I was about to do precisely that.

“So, you like science fiction books?” Maybe not the best opener but I didn’t have time to be more creative.

The boy I hoped was Tobias suddenly snapped out of his daydream and looked at me nervously for a second before letting a shy smile spread across his face. Already he reminded me of myself during my awkward teenage years. I also took note of the fact that this part of the book shop had a direct line of sight to the arcade opposite. If this was indeed Tobias, it looked like he might be waiting for Jake and Marco to leave. Interesting.

“Yeah anything with aliens in it.” He replied. The irony made me grin. “Sorry do I know you from school or something?”

“My name is Mike.” I couldn’t help imagining my own Animorphs’ book intro as I said it. “I’m new in town, just looking for some new books to read.” Sort of true since I wasn’t allowed to pack a Kindle before being transported here and it was 1996 so half my book collection hadn’t even been written yet.

“Nice to meet you Mike, I’m Tobias,” he replied.

My heart leaped! Yes! I had done it! I had found Tobias! Cue internal fanboy squeal! But I still had a job to do. I had to stay with him until we ran into Jake and Marco; then the real game would begin.


(MARCO’S POV)

“Okay Jake, you’ve just crossed the Nether Fjord, so watch out for the Sleaze…! No!” I yelled in despair as Jake was eaten by the Sleaze Troll for the third time in a row. “Dude I told you to let me play with that last quarter, you really suck at this game.”

My name is Marco. My friend Jake and I had just spent the past hour chilling in the arcade playing video games (Jake more than me since he had the most quarters). Since Jake had just blown our last quarter and most of the cool stores were closing anyway, we decided to head home. We were just heading for the exit, when two guys came walking towards us.

I recognised the guy with the dirty blonde hair to be Tobias; he was a dorky new kid at school and had instantly become a giant bully magnet. Jake had recently saved him from having his head flushed down the toilet at school by a couple of jerks. Since then Tobias seemed to have a man crush on Jake or something.

I didn’t recognise the other guy, but I guessed he was Tobias’ friend. A little surprising since I didn’t realise Tobias had any. He was taller than me but definitely shorter than Jake, and a little on the chubby side. His glasses probably didn’t help him win over the ladies either. 

“Hi Tobias, who’s your friend?” Jake asked.

I groaned inwardly. Bad enough having that dweeb Tobias hanging around, but now his nerdy friend too?

“I’m Mike,” he answered. As he spoke he stepped forward and shook Jake’s hand, then mine, coming off more confident and excited than I would have expected. Like he was meeting a celebrity and didn’t want to look like a dork. He had some kind of accent but I couldn’t place it. Maybe Australian or somewhere in Europe?

“Cool. I’m Jake, and this is Marco. So, you guys want to walk home with us? We’re going through the construction site.” For a split second after I said those words, I swear I saw a weird grin appear on Mike’s face; but it quickly disappeared, replaced with a more casual smile. Probably wondering how long he would be grounded for if he was caught.

“Sure,” Mike replied. So we carried on walking towards the door, making awkward small talk until we spotted Rachel and Cassie coming out of a clothes store.

Okay so I wouldn’t mention this to Jake, but his cousin Rachel is a serious babe. I’m not kidding, she’s actually supermodel gorgeous. She looks like she just walked off the cover of one of those fashion magazines that girls idolise. Rachel has long blonde hair, bright blue eyes and a great body. She does gymnastics but isn’t anorexic thin like most of that crowd. She’s also really into fashion and always knows how to pick a sexy outfit. Of course she would also kill me if I ever told her that to her face. I’ve seen guys flirt with her who were lucky to leave the room with all of their limbs still attached. Beautiful but fierce, that’s Rachel. Good thing I like a challenge.

Cassie however, seems like the opposite. For one thing, she usually wears a plain shirt and jeans, or something else completely casual. I’ve never seen her in a dress, I’m not even sure if she owns any. She’s dark skinned and wears her hair short most of the time. Cassie is also much quieter and more peaceful than Rachel. She couldn’t care less about fashion, unless she’s protesting against animal testing or trying to ban fur coats. She’s a total animal rights nut like her vet parents.

Oh, and Jake has a major crush on her that he thinks I don’t know about.

“You guys going home?” Jake asked Rachel. “You shouldn’t go through the construction site by yourselves. I mean, being girls and all.”

That was a big mistake, Jake should’ve known better. Probably just trying to be all manly and protective in front of Cassie. This seriously backfired, as Rachel is in fact the reincarnated spirit of an Amazonian warrior. Minus the sword thankfully.

“Are you going to come and protect us, you big, strong m-a-a-a-n?” she mocked. “You think we’re helpless just because…”

“I’d appreciate it if they did walk with us,” Cassie interrupted. “I know you’re not afraid of anything, Rachel, but I guess I am.”

Rachel couldn’t say much about that. That’s the way Cassie is – she always has the right words to stop any argument without making anyone feel bad. Either that or Tobias wasn’t the only one crushing on Jake that night.

So there we were. The six of us – Jake, Tobias, Mike, Rachel, Cassie and I. Six normal Mall rats heading home.

To get home from the Mall we could either go the long way round, which is the safe way, or we could cut through the abandoned construction site and hope there weren’t any axe murderers hanging around there. My dad isn’t exactly father of the year these days, but he would totally ground me for a decade if he found out I’d taken a shortcut through a creepy old construction site at night.

That’s if he ever finds out, I thought with a smile.

So anyway, we crossed the road and headed into the abandoned construction site. It was a big area, surrounded on two sides by trees, with the highway separating it from the Mall area. There’s a broad, open field between the construction site and the nearest houses. It’s a very isolated place.

Originally it was supposed to be this new shopping centre. Now it was just all these half-finished buildings looking like a ghost town. There were huge piles of rusted steel beams; pyramids of giant concrete pipes; little mountains of dirt; deep pits that had filled up with muddy water; and a creaking, rusted construction crane that Jake had climbed once while I stayed below and told him he was being an idiot.

It was a totally deserted place, full of shadows and sounds that made the hair on the back of your neck stand up. When Jake and I went there during the day, we always found all these beer cans and liquor bottles. Sometimes we found the ashes of little campfires back in the hidden nooks and crannies of the buildings. So we knew that people came there at night. All that was on my mind as we crept through the site.

I was trying (and failing) to convince myself that a random noise I’d just heard definitely wasn’t a serial killer creeping up behind us, when the Tobias and Mike suddenly stopped and stared open mouthed at the sky. I was about to make a witty remark about them forgetting their medication when Cassie interrupted me.

“It’s a flying saucer!”

I’m not going to lie, I totally burst out laughing. The idea just sounded completely ridiculous, especially from someone as level-headed as Cassie. I followed everyone’s dumbfounded gaze, expecting to see a plane. I froze. It was a brilliant, blue-white light that scooted across the sky, going fast at first, way too fast for it to be an aeroplane, then slower and slower. It was heading straight for us and could not be mistaken for anything built on this planet.

Holy shi-
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2015, 11:25:50 PM »
Oh! Awesome! You're still doing this :)
Richard is really Anna in disguise!

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2015, 08:44:26 AM »
I told you I was...  about 4 years ago :P Yeah I recently got nostalgic while watching the Opinionated Animorphs Guide and decided to finally start working on this again. I am determined to at least finish the first three parts of the series. What do you think so far Blue?
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2015, 08:17:53 PM »
Just like before, I love it :)
Richard is really Anna in disguise!

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2015, 08:15:54 AM »
CHAPTER 4: A Cursed Gift

(MIKE’S POV)

“A flying saucer?” Marco laughed. That is, until he looked up.

I wasn’t paying much attention to him though. I was so excited! I couldn’t stop grinning! I was going to be an Animorph!

“It’s coming this way,” Rachel said, interrupting my thoughts.

“It’s hard to be sure.” Jake’s voice was barley a whisper.

“No, it’s coming this way,” Rachel said. She seemed to have a very definite way of talking; as if she was sure of everything she said. But I didn’t have to be told, I already knew.

As predicted, the ship was slowing down, like a plane arriving at an airport, about to land. We could now see the ship quite clearly.

“It’s not exactly a flying saucer,” Jake pointed out.

He was right of course; it looked just like it did on the cover of Andalite Chronicles.

It was about the size of a school bus, and the front end was like an oval shaped pod. Extending out of the back of the pod was a long narrow shaft. There were two crooked, stubby wing-like things, and on the end of each wing was a long tube that glowed bright blue on the back end.

The ship looked harmless, maybe even cute. Until you saw the tail. It was a mean looking tail that curved up and forward, ending in a needle-like point.

“That tail must be some kind of weapon,” Jake said.

“Definitely,” Marco agreed.

The ship was still losing speed, and still flying closer to us.

“It’s stopping,” Rachel said. Her voice was starting to sound a bit weird, like she couldn’t believe it was real. I could hardly believe it myself.

“I think it sees us,” Marco said. “Should we run? Maybe we should run home and get a camera. Do you know how much money we could get for a video of a real UFO?”

That right there showed the key difference between the 90s and modern times. Any teenager in my world would have filmed Elfangor’s ship on their iPhone and uploaded the video to Youtube by now. Of course that would have meant the immediate capture of the Animorphs. Hell if Apple had been just a decade more advanced with phone technology, the entire Earth would have been doomed to Yeerk infestation from the start.

“If we run, they might… I don’t know, zap us with phasers on full power,” Jake made a lame attempt at a joke.

“Phasers are only on Star Trek,” Marco said, rolling his eyes.

“Yeah, but that tail isn’t there for decoration.” I said. Somehow resisting the urge to tell them the ship actually fired Shredder blasts.

The ship stopped and hovered almost directly over our heads, maybe thirty metres in the air. I glanced at the others and nearly laughed when I looked at Rachel. Her long blonde hair was sticking out in every direction. Only Cassie looked normal.

“What do you think it is?” Marco asked. His voice was shaking slightly. He didn’t seem so ****y with an alien space craft over his head. I was getting a little nervous myself, but not scared. I was too excited to be scared.

“I think it’s going to land,” Tobias said. I looked at him and saw that I wasn’t the only one smiling. His eyes were glowing with excitement.

As the ship came in for a landing between the piles of junk, I noticed the top of the pod section had been badly burnt; some of it had started to melt. The ship touched down and the blue lights instantly went out. Rachel’s hair fell back down on to her neck.

“It isn’t very big is it?” Rachel whispered.

“It’s about… about three or four times the size of our minivan,” Jake said.

“We should tell someone,” Marco said. “I mean, this is kind of major, you know? Spaceships don’t just land in the construction site every day. We should call the cops or the army or the president or something. We’d be totally famous. We’d get to be on TV for sure.”

“Yeah, you’re right” Jake agreed. “We should call someone.” But I knew that none of them would leave. They weren’t going to just walk away from a freaking spaceship.

“I wonder if we should talk to it,” Rachel suggested. She was standing there with her hands on her hips looking at the spaceship like it was a puzzle she had to figure out. “I mean, we should communicate. If that’s even possible.”

Tobias nodded, stepped forward, and held out his empty hands to show that he wasn’t carrying a weapon. In a loud, clear voice, he said, “It’s safe we won’t hurt you.”

“Do you think they speak English?” Jake wondered aloud.

“Well, everyone speaks English on Star Trek,” Cassie said with a nervous laugh.

“Please come out,” Tobias pleaded. “We won’t hurt you.”

<I know.>

It was strange hearing thought speak for the first time. I mean, I heard it alright; just not through my ears. I heard it inside my own head, almost as if they were my own thoughts, except that it wasn’t me thinking them.

“Did you guys…?” Jake started.

“Yep,” I replied. “He’s finally here…” Jake gave me a strange look but didn’t have the chance to question me.

“Can you come out?” Tobias asked in his loud talking-to-aliens-voice.

<Yes. Do not be frightened.>

“We won’t be frightened,” Tobias said.

“Speak for yourself,” Jake muttered. Marco, Cassie, and Rachel giggled nervously.

A thin arc of light appeared, a doorway, opening slowly in the smooth side of the pod part of the ship. I stood there, gazing towards the ship, and grinning like an idiot. Waiting.

The opening grew, like a crescent moon at first, then a full, bright circle.

And then Elfangor appeared. For a moment he stood tall and proud, like the great warrior he was. He was just as I had imagined him.

My first glimpse reminded me of a Centaur from Greek Mythology. Half-Human. Half-horse.

Actually that’s not entirely accurate. The horse section seemed okay (except for the blue fur and all), but the more-or-less Human part was slightly different. For one thing he didn’t have a mouth. This is because Andalite’s absorb nutrients from the grass as they run through it; and they communicate telepathically through thought speech. His nose seemed to have three vertical slits as nostrils (God knows why) and he also had a pair of stalk eyes on the top of his head, which he could turn 360 degrees so that he could see in every direction.

The eyes were slightly disturbing, but you could get used to them after awhile. The same thing cannot be guaranteed when you look at the tail. It was like a scorpion’s tail, thick and powerful-looking. On the end was a wickedly curved, very sharp-looking horn or stinger. An Andalite tail blade. You could easily tell by looking that it could cause some serious damage.

“Hello,” said Tobias. His voice was gentle, like he was talking to a baby. The more he grinned, the stranger he looked, but I couldn’t blame him; I probably looked a lot weirder. All this tension and excitement was killing me.

Seeing Elfangor was a strange experience; a bit like déjà vu because I had pictured this scene in my head so many times. He felt like a forgotten friend that I hadn’t seen since childhood.

<Hello,> Elfangor greeted us kindly.

“Hi,” we all said back. I wish I could have said something a bit more poetic but I was still in shock at meeting an iconic fictional character from my childhood. In the unlikely event that it ever happens to you, I’m sure you’ll understand.

Then, as predicted, he stumbled and fell to the ground, giving us a clear view of a large burn which ran down his right side.

“Look! He’s hurt!” Cassie yelled. Pointing at his burn.

<Yes,> he replied. I am dying.>

“Can we help you? We can call an ambulance or something,” Marco said.

“We can bandage that wound,” Cassie said. “Jake, give me your shirt. We can tear it up and make bandages.” Cassie helps her dad look after sick and injured animals, so it was only natural for her to want to help. But you know what the sad thing was? I knew there was nothing anyone could do. Elfangor was fated to die here amongst this collection of half-finished buildings and rusting cranes.

I could still hear Elfangor’s saddened thought speak “voice” as he started to explain to the others about the Yeerk threat, but I wasn’t really listening. Could I actually allow this alien to die? Could I do anything to save him?

I decided that I had to at least try to do something to save him. After all, wasn’t that the reason why I had been sent here in the first place? To save lives? The least I could do was try to talk to Elfangor after Tobias had his moment with him. I was still trying to formulate a better plan when I saw Yeerk ships in the distance and noticed that the others were staring at me, waiting to see if I thought we should accept the morphing power.

For the next three years these people were going to be my team mates, my only friends in a world of anger and hatred. I stared at each one of them, one by one. Jake, Cassie, Marco, Tobias, and finally Rachel. When my eyes reached Rachel I smiled.

“Let’s do it!” I yelled enthusiastically.

Elfangor smiled at me with his eyes and told us to put a hand on the square. My hand touched Elfangor’s and I smiled at him as a plan began to form in my head. I felt a tingling shock go up my hand, like a small electric shock except that it didn’t hurt.

<Go now,> Elfangor said. <Only remember this – never remain in animal form for more than two of your Earth hours. Never! That is the greatest danger of morphing! If you stay longer than two hours you will be trapped, unable to return to Human form.>

“Two hours,” I repeated, looking at Tobias thoughtfully.

I waited until Tobias and the others had gone, and then knelt down next to Elfangor.

“We will avenge your honourable death my Andalite friend,” I said. I placed my hand on his shoulder to comfort him. Having spent time on Earth, I hoped he would appreciate that very human gesture.

<You seem different from the others, are you not shocked by what I have told you?> Elfangor was understandably puzzled.

“Never judge a book by its cover Elfangor Sirinial Shamtul,” I smiled.

He started at me; confused for a moment. Then he smiled.

<Ellimist,> he said. It wasn’t a question.

“I was sent by the Ellimist, yes,” I said.

<I knew there was something about you.>

“Prince Elfangor, I am familiar with the morphing technology. Can’t you just morph to recover your injuries?”

<There is no time, and besides,> he said. <My time has come.>

I nodded, struggling for a moment to find my voice again. There was one last thing I had to tell him, he had the right to know and I hoped it would bring him some small comfort in his dying moments.

“Y-your brother lives Elfangor, and he loves you very much.” I told him.

<Thank you…> If Andalites could cry I think he would have started right then. <When the time is right, please tell Tobias who his real father is. And tell him I am sorry for not being there for him when he needed me.>

“I will guard your son, and your brother, with my life,” I promised him. I fought the tears that were welling up in my eyes.

<Now, leave quickly child!> he yelled. <Visser Three is here!>

“Goodbye Prince Elfangor Sirinial Shamtul…”

I ran to join the others behind a crumbled wall. Then, I watched the horror unfold.

I watched as the Blade ship came in for a landing.

I watched as the bladed Hork-Bajir and the nightmarish Taxxon surrounded Elfangor.

I watched as Visser Three, the Abomination, the first and only ever Andalite-Controller, morphed into a huge, hideous beast, and devoured the defenceless Andalite, a hero beyond words. After that I decided that I couldn’t take anymore.

I ran away. I could hear the others close behind me, but I didn’t look back. I just carried on running until my burning lungs and muscles could take no more and I collapsed on a random street corner.

And I cried.
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2015, 12:26:25 PM »
So this will be the first completely new chapter that wasn't in my original version. Those of you who read my old fic will obviously notice that I've completely changed how Mike gets his first morph. Hope you all enjoy it :)

CHAPTER 5: Mike’s First Morph

(MIKE’S POV)

I don’t remember falling asleep that first night after receiving the morphing power, but I must have managed an hour or so because I do recall waking up feeling awful the next morning. It had taken me forever to find my way back to my house in the woods in the dark; I kept getting lost even though I was sure it was a simple route back there.

Anyway, I woke up completely exhausted from a chilling nightmare/memory of the night before. Based on the tiny amount of light coming through my bedroom window, it couldn’t have been long past dawn. No self-respecting person should have been awake at that time, but I clearly wasn’t going to get anymore sleep. I decided to make the most of it and go hunting for my first morph.

*

One hour later I was back out on the streets of the Animorphs' hometown, searching for The Gardens or a pet shop, whichever I found first. It briefly occurred to me that all this walking I’d been doing was going to make losing my suddenly regained teenage fat a little easier. If I could resist the allure of American fast food that is.

“What kind of town doesn’t have sign posts pointing to the local zoo?” I muttered to myself as I continued to walk down street after street in my fruitless search. “Or at least a tourist information office or a–”

I froze mid-sentence and stared at the building just ahead of me. It was a little rundown with a SOLD sign in the window and a large car park attached full of various cars with price signs on their dashboards. A temporary banner sign was hanging over the entrance, which read: DEALIN’ DAN HAWKE’S CARS - OPENING SOON!

“I don’t believe it…” It was the used car shop that Rachel and Tobias had trashed in book 2. Or would trash at least, clearly the shop hadn’t opened yet. And if Dealin’ Dan was here, maybe I could finally snag my first morph after all: his Red-tailed Hawk mascot.

A pickup truck had just parked outside the entrance and two men stepped out. One of them was carrying a small bird cage with a clearly distressed hawk inside. The man with the cage was obviously having heated words with the other guy, but I couldn’t make out most of the conversation over the sound of the hawk squawking loudly.

I moved closer and tried to look like I was waiting at the bus stop on the corner, while actually eavesdropping on the two of them. From what I could make out, the man with the cage was asking the other guy (who turned out to be Dealin’ Dan himself) why he had insisted on having a real living hawk as his mascot. Dealin’ Dan was explaining that his name was Hawke and people loved puns, but even he looked like he was starting to regret his decision.

“Hey can you get her to shut up already? Get her some food from inside!” Dealin’ Dan shouted to make himself heard. “I need Price-Cut Pauline here to look pretty for the cameras, not give my customers a headache!”

Something about the bird’s name didn’t sound quite right, and when I looked closely I realised why: she wasn’t the Red-tailed hawk Tobias would later be rescuing. The bird in the cage was in fact a Harris Hawk.

Harris Hawks are a medium-sized bird of prey with mostly brown and black feathers. They also happen to be my favourite species of bird. I once saw a documentary about them and they are apparently one of the only raptors in the world that hunt in groups, like a Wolf pack or Lion pride. Harris Hawks are also commonly used by falconers and bird trainers to put on public displays. They are typically easier to tame than other birds of prey, but someone clearly hadn’t mentioned that to poor Price-Cut Pauline.

Fortunately Dealin’ Dan and his friend left Pauline’s cage on the driver’s seat while they carried a bunch of boxes inside, presumably to temporarily escape the screeching bird. There was no way I would get a better chance than this. As soon as they were out of sight, I ran over to the truck. I knew I didn’t have much time, but there was no way the distressed hawk was going to let me just reach in at pet her without me losing a finger. Luckily the solution came in the form of a McDonald’s breakfast McMuffin, still warm on the passenger seat.

“Sorry Pauline, I know this isn’t exactly healthy.” I apologised to the beautiful bird as I picked out a piece of sausage and tossed it into the cage. I felt a pang of sympathy as Pauline instantly swallowed the dead meat, she must have been starving.

I dropped the rest of the sausage in front of her, opened the cage and nervously reached out to stroke the back of her wing. Thankfully the meat was enough of a distraction that she barely seemed to notice me. I closed my eyes and did what I had practised so many times on old family pets and animals I worked with; I focused on the magnificent hawk beneath my fingertips and pictured her in my mind, imagined what it would be like to see the world through her eyes.

After about ten seconds of silence, Pauline became active again, snapping out of the acquiring trance and finished off the rest of the breakfast sausage. Hearing raised voices from inside the building, I quickly retreated back to the bus stop. I made sure to leave Pauline’s cage open of course. It didn’t take her long to take advantage of her newfound freedom, and she soon took flight into the open sky above her. With any luck, I would soon be joining her.

The look on Dealin’ Dan Hawke’s face when he realised his precious Pauline was gone was priceless, although something tells me he was secretly relieved. I doubt he was planning on keeping her for very long before getting a less vocal replacement. His friend was already talking about being able to get a good deal on a Red-tail while I casually walked away.

I knew I should have waited until I was back at my own little Fortress of Solitude in the woods before I tested out morphing for the first time, but I was too excited to wait that long. Besides, I reasoned, the trip back would be a lot shorter if I flew there.

So that’s how I found myself in a dead-end alleyway a few minutes later, crouched behind a large rubbish bin and preparing myself for my very first attempt at morphing. I was shaking a little, barely able to contain my excitement. I quickly stripped down to my underwear, deciding to leave my clothes behind. Hell, I needed a new wardrobe anyway. My glasses were a bigger issue, much harder to replace, but I improvised by taking them off and putting them inside one of my socks. I figured my Harris Hawk body would have little trouble carrying them home that way.

I noted with interest that my eyesight wasn’t as bad as usual when I took off my glasses. Of course, this was my sixteen year old body. I’d changed glasses prescriptions more than once since then so naturally my eyes were a little sharper than I remembered. This was a relief, as I disliked the idea of being half-blind everytime I demorphed.

Unable to restrain myself a second longer, I closed my eyes and concentrated. I once again pictured Price-Cut Pauline in my mind, but instead of being trapped in her cage, I now thought of her flying free through the great open sky. I put myself in her place, trying to imagine the wind rushing beneath my talons and the warm thermals beneath my wings. Then I felt the changes begin.

The transformation began with an itching sensation. I opened my eyes to find a feathered pattern being sketched into my skin. It almost looked like a very realistic tattoo, until the pattern began to rise out of the surface of my skin to form real feathers! I gasped but tried not to freak out, somehow managing to keep my concentration on the other changes that had started happening all over the rest of my body.

My entire body was shrinking, making it almost feel like I was falling from a great height. As my body drastically reduced in mass, my clothes fell to the floor. My feet hardened into sharp talons, while my lips became stiff, forming a curved beak.

It had taken over three minutes, but the change was complete. I had feathers, wings, a beak and a pair of very vicious looking talons for tearing into my prey. I was a Harris Hawk.

I was stunned by how good the hawk’s sight and hearing were. I mean, I had been expecting it, but it still came to me as a huge shock. I had thought this alley was empty, but with my newly heightened senses, it was now crawling with life. I could count the legs of every fly buzzing around the rubbish bin, and hear the rustling of a worrying number of rats nearby. I instinctively began to search for one of them before realising that the hawk’s mind had merged with my own. I had to fight the animal’s natural predator instincts to pursue the small creatures and snatch one up in my talons.

To prevent myself from making rat my breakfast, I tried to concentrate on what I knew about the Harris hawk. As I mentioned previously, it is one of the very few types of birds of prey that hunts in groups, usually in groups of five or six, and is quite a successful hunter when working as a team. I also dimly recalled that they’re usually found in the southern states and parts of South America, which could be a slight problem if I wanted to remain inconspicuous. I decided however, that the Yeerks would not have infested many bird-watchers, as they don’t tend to be too highly ranked in society. Besides, Harris Hawks are popular with falconers and sometimes captive birds do escape, even without assistance from a teenager with a McMuffin.

I carefully grabbed my sock/improvised glasses case with my talons, making sure not to crush my glasses in the process. Then I opened my wings, flapping hard until I felt my body leave the ground and take flight, barely scraping the alleyway floor to begin with but soon gaining altitude as I shot out into the streets. Hopefully anyone who happened to notice the sock would assume it was just roadkill.

How do I even begin to explain how the wonder of how it felt to fly as a bird for the first time? It truly was indescribable. I’d say it was like a dream, but it was so real that for the first time since I’d arrived in this world, I knew for certain I was awake. I spread my wings to their full length as I caught an early morning thermal, rising up into the clouds and soaring over even the tallest buildings in the town below. In that moment, I can honestly say I had never felt more alive and free. If you’ve ever been on a plane and felt a bit like you were floating as the plane leaves the ground, multiply that feeling by a billion and you might be able to imagine how I felt in my first moments of self-propelled flight. I was fighting against a force I could never fight as a Human: gravity. In my hawk body, gravity wasn’t a law anymore; it was an easily ignored street sign.

I rode the thermal until I was about half a mile up, yet still able to clearly make out the faces of the weekend workers about to face another day on the job while everyone else enjoyed their Saturday. I let the hawk’s instincts adjust my tail feathers slightly as needed, allowing me to soar effortlessly. If this was how Tobias felt the first time he morphed Red-tail, I could actually understand why he might have intentionally trapped himself as a nothlit. I felt so liberating up here in the clouds, far away from the troubles of the real world. Life’s problems couldn’t reach me here. I was a god in the skies and the people below were mere mortals. I’d be lying if I said the feeling wasn’t powerful and addictive, something that would definitely appeal to Tobias as a bully magnet with a terrible home life.

Sadly, as with everything in life used to escape reality, the real world always catches up with us. I reluctantly turned my thoughts to what I was going to do next. At some point today, Tobias was going to morph his cat Dude and then pay Jake a visit and get him to morph Homer. No reason to interfere there, not to mention the fact that I had no idea where either of them lived. The same applied to Marco and Rachel. Cassie on the other hand…

I swiftly changed course and started heading back to the woods. I needed to drop off my glasses first and then I was going to search for Cassie’s place. How hard could it be to find a farm from up here anyway?
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2015, 08:53:19 AM »
This is great, more soon as possible please!
Yet seeing your post made me think, "omg, I've never thought of that, you are an evil genius".

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2015, 04:47:40 PM »
Thanks for commenting. :) Anything in particular you like or dislike? Always nice to hear feedback.
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #10 on: April 01, 2015, 12:59:53 AM »
I just finished reading, really good Mike! :)

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #11 on: May 16, 2015, 07:40:10 AM »
This is great! Can't wait for more :D
I'll start the engine, but I can't take this ride for you
I'll draw your bath and I'll load your gun
But I hope so bad that you'll bathe and hunt

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2015, 09:28:09 PM »
Thanks. :) I've been a bit distracted lately but I'll get back to this as soon as I can.
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2015, 10:36:46 PM »
My apologies for the delay in updating, I'm sure it's no surprise to anyone who knows me :P Obviously I've been preoccupied with RAFcon and such, but I did promise people in DC that I would get back to work on this. I'll try my best to stick with it, but don't expect fast updates.

As always, feel free to post comments and suggestions and I hope you all enjoy :)

CHAPTER 6: The First Meeting

(CASSIE’S POV)

It wasn’t that I minded checking on the animals for my dad, I love animals. In fact, I trust animals more than I trust some people. The only problem was that I couldn’t stop thinking about that poor Andalite. The way Visser Three just mutated himself into that hideous creature. The way he lowered him into those jaws of death and began to… I don’t like to think about it, but I can’t help myself.

The distraction of the morning feeding routine lasted only up until I had finished feeding the Red-tailed Hawk we have (he broke a wing when he was mobbed by some crows). Then it was back to thoughts of death and horror from the previous night. I needed something else to take my mind of it. I was considering taking my favourite horse out for a ride when I suddenly had a different idea. If what the alien had said was true, I didn’t have to ride on the back of a horse, I could become one.

Moments later I was petting my horse and feeling rather foolish. How was this even supposed to work anyway? I thought about my old childhood fantasy of becoming a horse, just like the way Native American shamans once claimed to summon ancient animal spirits to imbue them with speed and strength. Perhaps it wasn’t all myth and legend after all, if the Andalite was to be believed.

I noticed the horse become more passive than usual when I touched him, but soon perked up again as I broke contact. I didn’t think anything of it at the time. I was lost in the thought of running across the fields with powerful legs and the wind rushing through my mane.

“This is stupid,” I said aloud. At least that’s what I meant to say. It actually came out more like “Hith ith huuhidd.” That’s round about the same time I realised my tongue was suddenly twice as long as it should have been and I started freaking out. I ran over to mirror above the sink in the corner and stared in horrific fascination at my reflection. My face! It had started to bulge out and grow fur!

My heart rate tripled in speed as I started to panic. What would I tell my parents? How could I ever show my face in public again? Jake would never want to ask me out now. All I’d wanted was to run like a horse and now- My face began to change again! Bulging out even further now as my ears began to slide upwards and fur continued to grow and spread across my arms and neck.

I turned away from the mirror before I had the urge to hurl up my breakfast. It was clear to me now that thinking about being the animal was the key to the changes, but I still had zero desire to actually watch it happen. It was incredibly gross. I made the mistake of looking down and saw my fingers all merge together before turning hard and hoof-like. I forced myself to look away again, but I could still feel the changes happening. Bones cracking and rearranging themselves, an itchy sensation covering my entire body due to the spontaneous eruption of body hair, and even my teeth growing larger as my jawline became stretched.

My clothes tore open from a massive increase in size and I found the extra weight forcing me onto all fours. I almost laughed at what Rachel would say about a waste of clothes, but since I’m not a fashion queen like her, she’d probably say the world was better off without my ill-fitting jeans and stained T-shirt. I did like those boots though…

A few minutes later, I realised that I’d stopped changing. A glance back at the mirror with one eye revealed that my transformation was complete. I had actually turned into a horse!

My excitement soon turned to panic as my newly enhanced nose began to pick up a series of worrying scents. There were other animals everywhere! Was that a wolf I could smell? I had to get out of there! I bolted for the open door and took off running across the wide open fields.

(MIKE’S POV)

I made a careful note of the time before hopping onto the window sill and taking off again, back into the open air where my hawk body belonged. It had taken me longer than it should have to find my way home, but I still had plenty of time left in morph. The reason for my delay was that I kept getting lost and turned around on my way back to the Fortress (I’d decided I liked that name for my little house in the woods). It was almost like some unseen force had been drawing me away from where I wanted to go…

Ellimist. That crafty bugger must have given my new home the same defence mechanism as the Hork-Bajir valley. Come to think of it, that explained why it had taken me so long to get home the previous night as well. I have to admit, the Ellimist really does think of everything.

I’d been in Harris Hawk morph for almost a whole hour now, and it was still the coolest thing in the entire world. Now that I had dropped off my glasses back at the Fortress, I was really able to take my hawk body out for a test drive. Swooping between the branches of trees and soaring high up on the thermals, I started to wonder why I’d never tried sky diving. I imagine it’s a similar experience, minus the beak and feathers.

I was gliding over the open fields now searching for Cassie’s house, or at least her barn. Of course that didn’t mean I couldn’t have a bit of fun at the same time. I wanted to see just what the Harris Hawk was capable of.

Pointing my body downwards, I folded my wings and began to plummet towards the earth below at high speed, letting gravity and aerodynamics do all the hard work. The sight of the rapidly approaching ground terrified the human part of me, but my hawk instincts were keeping me calm and in control. I have no clue how fast terminal velocity was for a hawk a dive, but it was obviously far faster than anything I had ever experienced outside of being on a plane. I was breaking the speed limit and then some by the time I opened my wings and pulled up out of the dive, mere metres from the very solid ground below.

<HAHAAA!> I whooped ecstatically. <THIS IS AWESOME!>

There was a flash of movement as I saw a nearby deer practically have a heart attack before fleeing in terror for the safety of the forest.

<Sorry!> I called out to the rapidly escaping animal.

After regaining altitude and gliding just beneath the clouds for a few more minutes, I spotted a horse running across the fields. Even from this height, it looked too clean to be a wild animal, and yet it had no saddle or rider. It seemed to be heading towards a barn in the distance, with a house opposite. There was no doubt in my mind; I had finally found Cassie.

Horse Cassie entered the barn and I descended and circled the area a few times, making sure that neither of her parents were around and trying to find a place to land. I soon found an appropriate spot and swooped in to land in the rafters. And that’s when things got awkward…

See I had been right about the horse being Cassie in morph. What I hadn’t counted on was that she might not have figured out the clothing problem yet. She had just demorphed and discovered her predicament (thankfully with her back to me) and was walking over to some kind of work station to retrieve a spare pair of overalls that had been left there. As it turns out, Harris Hawks can’t blush.

I had obviously noticed the night before that both Rachel and Cassie were rather attractive. Rachel was a given since the books basically described her as a model, which was true, but they really didn’t give Cassie enough credit in that department. And while I was technically the same age as the Animorphs now, I still felt creepy spying on a sixteen year old. One who could turn around any second. Plus Jake would actually murder me.

You know what? I’ll come back later… I took flight as silently as possible to avoid further embarrassment.

*

It was about midday and I was once again on my way to Cassie’s house to meet with the other Animorphs. Tobias had called me an hour earlier to tell me about the meeting (I had given him my phone number last night at the Mall). It was kind of unnecessary since I already knew, but it was nice of him just the same.

I flew on until I caught sight of Cassie’s barn, and spotted the other Animorphs. Jake, Marco, Tobias, and Rachel, were all standing outside the barn. Cassie was some distance away in horse morph, galloping through the fields at top speed. I carried on flying until I’d reached the others, before landing in front of them while Jake was reading the newspaper.

Rachel looked at me with a puzzled expression on her face.

“Weird bird,” she muttered.

<I’ll take that as a compliment thank you. Being normal is so overrated.> I told her.

Rachel froze.

“What the–” she started.

“Glad you could make it Mike,” Tobias said. “What kind of bird are you?”

<It’s a Harris hawk.> I answered.

“Aren’t you going to demorph Mike?” Jake asked me. 

<I would Jake, except that there’s a cop car on its way here and I think they might question why I was naked after I demorphed.>

“Seriously a cop? I wonder what they want?” Rachel wondered aloud.

<No idea,> I lied. <But he’ll be here soon. I’ll keep a lookout from above and let Cassie know to demorph ASAP.>

“Sounds good, thanks Mike.” Jake said as I took to the skies once more.

“Great now the cops are involved? This is what I’m talking about; why do we have to deal with this?” Marco asked. “I say we just forget it. We never talk about it. We never morph. We just deal with our own lives.”

If anyone else had said those words, I would have argued with them. I made an exception in Marco’s case. He didn’t know the truth about his mother yet, and his dad would be devastated if anything happened to him. So when Tobias gave Marco a side-ways glance I spoke to Tobias privately.

<Marco isn’t a coward,> I told him. <He has his reasons.>

Tobias looked up at the sky at me with a puzzled expression on his face; then he shrugged.

I moved out of earshot after that, but it’s not like I didn’t know how the rest of the conversation was going to go.

<Cassie can you hear me?> I called out to the horse racing towards the others. I wasn’t yet sure what the range was for thought speech.

<Hello? Who is that?> Cassie asked. She came to a halt and began to look around for the source of my voice.

<It’s me Mike, from last night. Just warning you that there’s a cop about to reach the others so you better demorph now before he gets here.>

<Okay, thanks.>

It quickly became apparent that Cassie’s talent for morphing was already starting develop. Her demorphing process certainly wasn’t attractive, but it was definitely smoother and more controlled than mine. I was also relieved to see that she had indeed solved the clothing problem. I’d already had enough awkwardness for one day.

<Wow, you can morph clothing? How did you manage that?> I feigned ignorance.

“It’s not that hard,” Cassie shrugged modestly. “Just takes a bit of practice. And it only works on skin-tight clothing. And don’t even bother trying shoes, I’ve already shredded half of mine. Rachel is going to end up dragging me to the mall to go clothes shopping again…”

<Cool, I’ll have to try the clothing thing later. I’m going ahead to check on the others, see you soon.>

I made it back in time to see the Controller policeman still talking to Jake and the rest.

“Can we help you, officer?” Rachel asked the Policeman in her best ‘responsible’ voice.

“We’re making some inquiries,” he answered. “We’re looking for some kids who were shooting off fireworks in the construction site across from the mall last night.”

Suddenly Marco started coughing for some reason.

“Something the matter with him?” the policeman questioned.

“Nope,” Jake told him. “Nothing wrong with him.”

“We want these kids,” Controller cop said. “We want them real bad. See, it was dangerous what they did. Could have been someone hurt. So we want to find the kids.”

Yeah, so you can force one of your slimy brothers into our heads you filthy slug! I thought angrily.

As the Controller went on to talk about the Sharing, it occurred to me that he was probably one of the guys at the construction site last night, laughing as Elfangor was murdered in cold blood. I was momentarily tempted to swoop down and give the guy a spare eye socket.

The time for revenge will come, I told myself. But not today.

“Well, you call me if you hear anything about those kids in the construction site. I should warn you – they may come up with some wild story to conceal their guilt. But you’re too smart to believe a bunch of crazy lies, aren’t you?”

“He’s a regular genius,” Marco said, indicating Jake.

The policeman got back into his car and took off. He did, however, glance back suspiciously as a bare-footed Cassie re-joined the group…
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
http://animorphsforum.com/index.php?topic=10876.msg860745#msg860745

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Offline Tim Bruening

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2015, 12:42:56 AM »
An excellent start!  When will it continue?  I hereby suggest that Mike get the other Animorphs to acquire every animal at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center!  They should especially morph ducks, geese, sea gulls, and owls.  The ducks and geese can fly long distances and in formation.  The sea gulls will prove handy in book 4.  The owls can see at night.

Mike should also get the Animorphs to acquire dolphins in case they need to escape by water.

I am hopeful that the addition of Mike to the group will make it possible to rescue Tom.  I am also rooting for Mike to prevent Tobias from getting frozen in hawk form.

I was hoping that Mike could secure the morphing cube and lock it up in his vault!  Maybe he can do so after the David Trilogy.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2015, 12:46:42 AM by Tim Bruening »

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2015, 06:01:24 AM »
Thanks for reading. I already know how the first book is going to end as I've written this fic before years ago. This is the (hopefully) improved version.

I did plan to do a whole series including the David saga, but I doubt I'll ever get that far.
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2015, 08:48:36 PM »
So this chapter ended up a little longer than expected, due to a combination of editing/merging old chapters together. Only just realised that despite adding new content, I'm probably going to have less chapters than the original, lol.

Anyway, enjoy! :)

CHAPTER 7: Flying Free and Beach Sirens

(MIKE’S POV)

The meeting broke up soon after, with Jake, Rachel and Marco heading home and Tobias, Cassie and I staying behind to check out the animals in Cassie’s barn. Everyone had basically agreed not to make any rash decisions about what to do about the Yeerks just yet. Marco probably thought that meant he had won, at least for now. Tobias certainly didn’t see it that way, as he excitedly browsed the various animal cages looking for a new morph to try out.

“So which one are you going to morph?” Cassie asked Tobias. She hadn’t shown any interest in testing a new morph herself. Personally if I was in her place, I’d be acquiring every animal brought into the clinic.

Tobias was gazing at two injured birds of prey. An Osprey with a broken beak, and a Red-tailed hawk with a broken wing.

“I think I’ll choose…the Red-tail!” Tobias decided.   

“Good choice,” I told him with a smile. “You’re going to love flying.”
   
Tobias walked up to the hawk’s cage, stuck his hand inside, and stroked the injured bird’s healthy wing. The hawk glared at him furiously (although it was kind of hard to tell with raptors) and started to flare up, but it suddenly became passive as Tobias started to acquire its DNA.

“The same thing happened with Dude,” Tobias said once he had finished acquiring the hawk’s DNA. Dude is Tobias’ cat. “I think that all animals are put into some kind of trance while they’re being acquired.”

I nodded thoughtfully.   

“Yeah I guess that would make sense,” I said. “I mean, how else would these Andalites be able to morph really dangerous animals like Vis…” I stopped in mid-sentence. I’d been about to mention the beast Visser Three morphed the previous night, but talking about what happened to Elfangor… it hurt more than I would’ve expected.

Cassie broke the awkward silence.

“So…are you morphing or what?” she asked. Tobias nodded, and began to morph.

I always used to think that the Animorphs were exaggerating when they said that they would never in a million years get used to the morphing process. This was only the second time I had actually seen someone morphing, so you wouldn’t think that I’d had time to form a real opinion yet. But as I watched Tobias’ body begin to reform; feathers exploding out of his skin and his facial features melting together to form a beak, I made up my mind. I would never, ever get used to watching something like that. Trust me on this one.

“Aren’t you morphing too Mike?” Cassie stared at me curiously, as if I were a puzzle she was trying to figure out. I almost laughed at that. Cassie may have had a reputation as a being incredibly intuitive, but even a freaking mind reader wouldn’t have believed I was an inter-dimensional traveller brought here my a god-like being to save a fictional universe. Hell, even I thought it sounded ridiculous.

In any case I didn’t want to increase her suspicions, so I started to morph Harris hawk once again. Although the way Cassie had looked at me reminded me of the fact that I was going to have to tell the other Animorphs my little secret eventually. Or at least some variation of the truth.

Eventually yes, I told myself as I finished the morph. But not today. I stretched out my raptor’s wings, flapping them hard until I found a small updraft, and then floated off towards the afternoon sun with my brand new Red-tailed friend by my side.

*

(TOBIAS’ POV)

<YEEEEEHAAAA!!!> I yelled out loud at the exhilaration and joy of flying. It was wonderful. We had been flying over the city for over half an hour, searching for the Yeerk Pool the Andalite had told me about, but I was still ecstatic! It all felt so open, peaceful, and free. It was almost as if I had spent twenty years in prison and then been released into the world. Freedom. Absolute, total freedom! If there was one moment of my life I would never forget, it would be the first time I morphed a bird, flying free through the blue afternoon sky. It was by far the greatest moment of my life.

<WAAAHOOO!!!> My new friend Mike went shooting past less than five metres to my right. He seemed to be enjoying it almost as much as I was. But then again; how could you not enjoy flying?

<This is incredible Mike,> I told him. <The eyes, the ears, the wings…Everything!>

<I know! It’s so amazing!> Mike replied. <We are nearly a mile up, but I can still see all the people down there so clearly it’s like we’re right next to them. I can even hear the cars!>

<It’s like a dream come true,> I said. There was silence for a while before Mike started talking again.

<By the way Tobias, what made you choose the Red-tail instead of the Osprey?>

It was a perfectly reasonable question, but it took me by surprise.

<I don’t know really,> I admitted. <The Red-tail looked cooler I guess.> It was only then that I realised something that should have been quite obvious. <Where did you get your Harris hawk from Mike?>

<You wouldn’t believe me if I told you!> Mike laughed. <Let’s just say there’s an ignorant car dealer out there who is now missing a mascot.>

<Okayyy…> I was very confused but decided to drop it. <So what do you think about this Yeerk Pool thing I mentioned?>

I had told Mike all about this weird telepathic info-burst Elfangor had given me the night before. It was all a confusing jumble of words and images, but it was clearly information about the Yeerks. Apparently they had to leave their host body every three days to feed by swimming around in a Yeerk Pool and absorbing something called Kandrona radiation. Like a plant using photosynthesis to feed on sunlight.

<Sounds like something we definitely need to check out,> Mike replied. He’d been strangely unfazed by the bizarre information I’d given him.

Reality check Tobias, if you think anything is strange compared to what happened last night then there must be something seriously wrong with you. I reminded myself.

<But I don’t think we’re going about this search the right way though.> Mike added.

<How so?>

<Well the Yeerk invasion is obviously a secret, they wouldn’t leave their feeding ground out in the open for anyone to find.> He pointed out. <Don’t get me wrong, I’ll take any excuse to fly around like this, but I’m guessing this Yeerk Pool will be inside a building somewhere, or maybe even underground.>

<Good point,> I acknowledged, feeling a little foolish for not thinking of it myself. <We’re near Jake’s house now anyway, let’s swing by and see what he thinks about all this.>

I stared down at the patchwork quilt of suburban buildings below and eventually spotted one I recognised, despite the birds-eye view still being new to me. We had arrived at Jake’s house. However, as Mike and I began to descend towards Jake’s window, I heard a bunch of loud noises coming from inside. It sounded like somebody having a fight. What was going on? Fortunately my incredible hawk ears could hear what was being said now that we were close enough, even with the window closed.

“Jake, quit acting like a stupid jerk!”

“Take that back!”

“Not likely, you think it’s just a coincidence he’s suddenly all interested in what happened at the construction site?”

<What the hell is going on in there?> I asked Mike.

<Not a clue. I can’t see into the room very well with the sun at this angle.>

<Me neither,> I said. <But from what I can hear it sounds like Jake and Marco are fighting about something.>

<Yeah and I don’t think it’s about pizza toppings.> Mike agreed.

<Should we still go in?>

<Definitely. Red-tails first.> Mike said with a laugh.

<With pleasure, let me show you how it’s done.> I called back before heading right into a dive towards Jake’s bedroom window. I folded back my wings in the bird of prey equivalent of a free fall and let gravity bring me in for a landing. I opened my wings wide again as I got close to slow my descent, then started flapping against the window with my left wing to try and get their attention. Mike appeared next to and did the same.

<Let us in, alright? We can’t hover here forever!> I insisted.

<Yeah what do you think we are, Geese?> Mike added.

Thankfully Jake walked over to the window and opened it up as wide as it would go to let us in. I landed on Jake’s dresser and Mike fluttered over to the bed.

<What on Earth are you two fighting about?> I demanded. <Oh, and what do you think of my new Red-tailed hawk morph?>

*

(MIKE’S POV)

Tobias and I told Marco and Jake about the Yeerk Pool information, and it wasn’t too long before Marco pointed out that both Tom and the Cop had invited us to the Sharing. As we suspected (and I knew) them both to be Controllers, we decided to go along to the meeting that night down at the beach to see if the Sharing really was just one big happy family. We got in touch with Rachel and Cassie who also agreed to come along.

Jake, Marco, Cassie, Rachel, and I walked there, but Tobias flew most of the way. I almost wish I’d been up there with him; flying is just so incredibly awesome! I used to think it hard to believe that Tobias would purposely trap himself as a hawk, but after experiencing it for myself; I found it hard to argue with considering Tobias’ appalling home life.

After spending over an hour at the meeting, I started thinking that if I didn’t know it was run by brain-stealing slugs, I’d probably be having a really fun time. I talked with some of the newer members, played volleyball with Jake and Tom, and ate some delicious barbeque chicken. Not surprisingly, I suck at volleyball, but the food was fantastic and everyone was so friendly.

No wonder the Sharing is so popular, I thought worriedly. I looked around at all the people hanging out on the beach. There must have been at three or four dozen people, and over half of them must have been Controllers. The worst part was that I knew that this was only a tiny fraction of the Yeerk forces on this planet. Even this early in the series, there were already hundreds of Human Controllers in this town alone, possibly more. It was a frightening and humbling thought.

After a while I kind of wandered off a bit from everyone else and just stared out across the ocean, the cool sea breeze wafting the scent of burned wood along the shore. Watching the gentle waves wash up the beach made me think of Ax. I wondered how he was doing right now. He must have been really lonely. Trapped beneath the surface of an alien ocean with nothing but the sharks for company? It must be horrible for him.

Hang in there Ax, I thought. We’ll be coming for you soon…

“You’re new here right?” the voice snapped me out of my thoughts. I turned to see who was talking and found myself face to face with a tall girl who looked to be about twenty one or so, the age I was before the Ellimist ‘youthed’ me. She had long blonde hair and sapphire blue eyes. With the swimsuit she was wearing showing off some impressive curves, she could have passed for Rachel’s older, hotter cousin.

Now I admit that I don’t have the most experience with dating and I was a little nervous, but I wasn’t the sixteen year old wuss she saw when she looked at me. So when I replied, I did so with all the confidence of a mature, well-spoken adult.

“Er, uh hi?” I stammered. Cue mental face palm. I’d like to blame my hormonal teenage body for my lack of vocal skills, but honestly my mature adult self is still a nervous wreck at talking to girls.

“Are you always this coherent?” She teased, letting out a small laugh. “Don’t worry I don’t bite!”

The whole exchange would have been embarrassing enough even without the added knowledge that she could easily be a Controller. Sure she appeared to be just a normal, harmless, attractive girl enjoying a fun night at the beach, but in a world inhabited by Controllers you can never judge people by face value. Having said that, her joking and flirty tone did put me a little more at ease.

“Yeah this is my first meeting,” I replied with a nervous smile. Controller or not, she was sexy as hell. “And believe it or not, this is one of my more coherent days.” She laughed again, and suddenly the beach felt a whole lot hotter.

“Well it’s nice to meet you…”

“Mike,” I replied, trying to act casual and also not stare at her swimsuit too much. “And you are?”

“Erika. I’ve been coming to the Sharing for a while now; some of my friends recommended it. How about you?”

Was she actually interested in me? Or was she just simply another tool for the Yeerks trying to entice teenage boys into joining the Sharing.

“A friend of mine invited me, his brother, Tom, is a full member here,” I informed her calmly, looking for some kind of reaction which would prove she was a free girl. Unfortunately, it’s not so easy to spot a controller that way.

“Oh, so you know Tom as well!”

My blood turned cold; if she knew Tom then that increased the chance that she was a Yeerk after all.

“You know him?” I asked, faking mild interest. I hoped she didn’t notice my panic.

“Sure! He followed me and my friends to a meeting last month. To tell you the truth,” she said, lowering her voice. “I think he has a crush on me!”

Okay, so she didn’t really sound like a controller. As I looked at her dazzling smile and sparkling blue eyes, I couldn’t help but pray that she was just a normal girl.

“So you like him?” I questioned. My heart skipped a beat as she flashed me a mischievous grin.

“No way! He’s not my type, I prefer younger guys.” She looked me in the eye and raised an eyebrow suggestively. My heart then skipped about a dozen beats!

“Good to know.” I finally managed to speak after a few seconds of trying to get my lungs to start working again. Maybe she wasn’t a Yeerk after all. I mean, what kind of controller would waste time flirting with a teenager? Sure girls literally never came onto me like this, but maybe American girls were just more forward than the girls back home.

Or more likely, you’re being a bloody idiot and she’s using her looks to trick you into agreeing to a slug in the brain. The more cynical part of my brain pointed out.

My thoughts were interrupted again, this time by a meaningful glance from Jake. He and the others were standing over by a quiet corner of the beach waiting for me to join the conversation.

“Anyway, it was great to meet you Erika! Maybe I’ll see you at the next meeting?” I suggested. Why did I say that? Even a face that pretty wasn’t worth a return trip to The Sharing. Curse my testosterone-filled brain…

Erika smiled again, turning my legs to jelly. “Sure!” she agreed happily. She went off to join some friends on the other side of the beach. Shockingly, I found myself hoping she was going to talk to them about me. I walked over to the others. They seemed to have overheard some of my conversation with Erika, as they each had an amused expression on their face.

“Maybe I was wrong about the Sharing after all,” Marco conceded. “No way can a girl that hot be an alien!” He obviously meant Erika. “Although if she isn’t being brainwashed by an alien slug, how come she’s turning her charm on you Mike?” I knew he was just teasing me, but his comment did sting a little. Fortunately, I am not easily offended.

“Give it up Marco, you’re just jealous that you could never get a girl like that,” Rachel told him. “Most girls actually like guys who use there brains for things other than making up bad jokes.” 

“Yeah well luckily for me, you aren’t like most girls Rachel.” Marco replied grinning.

“Be quiet you two, I think it’s sweet,” Cassie said, playing the peacemaker. “She seemed to really like you Mike.” A comment like that from Cassie was usually a good sign, as she was supposed to be the master at reading people.

“Thanks Cassie,” I replied gratefully.

“Moving on,” said Jake. He was trying to sound serious, but I could see the amused grin on his face when he looked at me. Was it really that obvious that I liked her? It must be if even Jake could tell. “I don’t think all of these people are here for a friendly get together. Something’s definitely wrong about this place, and I need to find out what that is.”

“And how do you propose we do that? Walk up and ask them if they’re part of an alien conspiracy?” Marco asked sarcastically, although he was sure to keep his voice down.

“Do you really think they’re going to notice a stray dog wandering along the beach?” Jake replied.

“A stray dog? Oh.” Marco realised what he was getting at.

“Good thinking,” Cassie agreed. “I’d go too, but they would definitely suspect a horse.” As she said that, I remembered that she was going to try going after Jake anyway, but would be stopped and marked for infestation by the cop. That was something I would have to intervene in; it would solve a few problems later on.

I waited while Jake morphed Homer and Tobias demorphed back to Human. I could almost see the sense of loss as Tobias became Human again. It made me wonder if I should try to prevent him becoming trapped as a hawk later on. After all, he seemed much happier as a hawk, and his bird eyes and wings were vital at several points in the series. But he wouldn’t have Rachel… I thought. And Rachel is what, or who he wants. I can’t take that from him, not for anything.

With that decided, I realised I had an opportunity to set things right, here and now. If I could stop Cassie being spotted by the Cop Controller here at the beach (while Jake was spying on the full member’s meeting) then he wouldn’t have any reason to grab Cassie and take her to the Yeerk Pool in a few days’ time. That would mean I could stop Tobias morphing hawk early the night of the Yeerk Pool mission, and stop him getting trapped in the first place. Small plays leading to bigger changes, the Ellimist would certainly approve.

I spotted Cassie in the distance, following the path Jake had taken in Dog morph. I didn’t have time to morph Hawk, and the spot Jake and Tobias had used was no longer secluded enough in any case. The bird’s eye view was out, so I would just have to follow Cassie on foot and pray I got to her before any Controllers caught her snooping.

I lost track of Cassie for a few minutes, but after fighting my way past a bunch of new Sharing members, I managed to find where she had sneaked off to. It wasn’t hard to find her honestly. Cassie has many admirable qualities, but being a super spy is not one of them.

“Mike? What are you doing here?” Her eyes widened in surprise, but she at least had the sense to keep her voice down this close to the full member’s meeting.

“Looking for you before you get yourself caught.” I told her. “I know you’re worried about Jake, but he’s fine and you’re a sitting duck out here. Now let’s get back to the other before somebody–”

“Hey you there! What are you kids doing here?” Cop Controller appeared out of nowhere and looked very suspicious. Clearly the universe has a sense of humour.

“Just looking for shells.” Cassie and I said simultaneously. She gave me a weird look. “Oh look here’s a good one Cindy.” I grabbed the first shell I could reach from the sandy ground, then started pulling Cassie back towards the main beach area. “We better get going, sorry for the confusion Officer…”

Cop Controller didn’t follow us, but I could almost feel his laser-focused sight on the back of my neck as we walked away. Clearly he hadn’t been fooled anymore than he had been in the original timeline. Damn it, I was going to have to keep an eye on Cassie if I had any hope of saving Tobias from a permanent diet of rats and roadkill.

“Why did you call me Cindy?” Cassie questioned me once we were out of sight of the cop.

“Would you rather I used your real name in front of Sergeant Suspicious back there? Come on let’s get out of here before we attracted anymore attention. Something tells me Jake’s spying might have been a bit more productive than yours.”
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
http://animorphsforum.com/index.php?topic=10876.msg860745#msg860745

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Offline Tim Bruening

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #17 on: September 03, 2015, 01:24:16 AM »
So the Elimist has recruited Mike from the future to help the Animorphs.  Is Crayak allowed to recruit anyone to help the Yeerks?

Recommendations for Mike:

Book 8: Ask Ax straight out what the Yeerks will do about Controllers whose Yeerks starve to death.  Get Ax to admit that such Controllers would be murdered, then urge that the Animorphs snatch any Controllers whose Yeerks are about to die.

Book 10: Secure the Pemalite Crystal and lock it in his vault, in case any Chee other then Erek want to disable their non-violence programming.  Also suggest the idea of using the Chee's inbuilt Kandrona generators to keep alive Yeerk defectors.

Book 20: Point out that just before a mission to save world leaders is not the best time to be breaking in a new Animorph (David).  Suggest that David be parked with the Chee or with the free Hork-Bajir until the Animorphs have some down time with which to break in David properly.

Book 31: Suggest that Tom be kidnapped during the Berenson family visit to the Lake Tahoe cabin (to honor Grandpa G) and held until his Yeerk dies.  The situation in Book 31 was a golden opportunity to save Tom!

Book 49: Urge that the Animorphs save Jake's family FIRST!

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2015, 06:31:04 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions, most of it is stuff I've already thought of, but you'll have to wait and see (assuming I ever get far enough in the series for half the awesome stuff I have planned). In the original version of this fic, I had planned a story involving another "off-worlder" sent by Crayak to kill Mike, but I honestly haven't decided if I'll still write that or not. The original idea I had sucked so at the very least I'll have to change it.

Regarding #31: any attempt to rescue Tom would result in the Yeerks trying to track him down and kill/re-infest him, not to mention killing/infesting Jake and his parents. Yes they could go on the run but I dislike that idea so early in the series.
Animorphs Travels #1 The Invasion
http://animorphsforum.com/index.php?topic=10876.msg860745#msg860745

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Offline Tim Bruening

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2015, 02:39:32 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions, most of it is stuff I've already thought of, but you'll have to wait and see (assuming I ever get far enough in the series for half the awesome stuff I have planned). In the original version of this fic, I had planned a story involving another "off-worlder" sent by Crayak to kill Mike, but I honestly haven't decided if I'll still write that or not. The original idea I had sucked so at the very least I'll have to change it.

Regarding #31: any attempt to rescue Tom would result in the Yeerks trying to track him down and kill/re-infest him, not to mention killing/infesting Jake and his parents. Yes they could go on the run but I dislike that idea so early in the series.

I have seen suggestions that in book 31, the Yeerks would have expected Tom's Yeerk to not come back alive from the 4 day trip, so Tom could have been freed and his death faked without rousing suspicions.

I have suggested that the Chee fake the crash of the medivac helicopter they brought to take Tom back to town.

Suggestions for Mike: Book 8: Urge Alloran to morph something small to negate the rattlesnake poison and be easily carried to safety.

Book 4: While Visser 3 is chasing the Animorphs and Ax in Mardut form, and the whales attack Visser 3, urge the whales to finish Visser 3 off!

Book 17: Hide the oatmeal in his vault for future use.

Offline Tim Bruening

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Re: Animorphs Travels #1: The Invasion
« Reply #20 on: August 22, 2016, 02:48:13 PM »
I look forward to a continuation of this story!