Challenge #02017-E193: Like a Boss

in fiction •  last year 


Adrenaline is a well known (and banned due to its effectiveness/danger) military combat drug.
What happens when aliens find out that human bodies produce it naturally when under stress or danger? -- Anon Guest

The V'rithi had known Human Jak as a 'team mom', constantly fretting over their collective wellbeing. Making sure they had rodesnax[1] and clothing that would protect them from the elements. Human Jak was constantly gentle and kind, and -to use a Human phrase- wouldn't hurt a fly.

When the Vorax attacked, it was quite a shock to everyone that Human Jak went Mama Bear and actually threw the Vorax patrol leader at the rest of his crew before picking up the V'rithi transport unit and running away with it. This was also a shock for Human Jak, self-confessed ninety-eight pound weakling.

He had enough time to get the transport unit to safety before setting it down and collapsing in a trembling heap. "Saloop," he panted. "Loads'a sugar. Big cup." This was the traditional aftercare for those suffering an overload of Adrenaline. A soothing beverage loaded with sucrose. In Human Jak's case, a solution of tannin infused with bovine lactate.

Fifriz synthesized the remedy and quadrupled the usual amount of sucrose, while Jorist monitored Human Jak's livesuit readings.

"We didn't know you had an adrenaline injector in this livesuit, Human Jak. You should warn us of these things."

Human Jak stood by using the transport unit as a prop. Started walking back and forth between the nose and the open door. He was shaking like a leaf. "No injectors. Just me. Good old fight or flight. ThinkI'mgunnabesick..." some dangerous-sounding coughs and burps, but nothing came up.

Fifriz arrived with the insulated cup. "Slow and careful, yes?"

"Slow and careful," Human Jak agreed, blowing on the contents before taking a careful sip. "Powers, yes. This is exactly what I need."

Jorist was confused. "If you don't have an injector... how did you get near-lethal amounts of adrenaline in your system?"

"Near-lethal for you little lizards." Sip. Pace, pace, pace. Sip. "Humans make it naturally. Survival rigging for a Deathworld. Comes in damn handy, but it wipes you the heck out afterwards." Sip. Pace, pace, pace. Sip. "When I'm done here... I recommend an expeditious retreat to the survey vessel. Full defences. And a beacon for backup. Just in case." Sip. Pace, pace, pace. Sip. "Just thew their boss at their cohort. Could have pissed them off. Could have scared the shit out of them. Can't tell from here."

Human Jak was shivering all the way back to the relative safety of the survey vessel Curiosity, where they changed into their ship's skins and as many warming outer layers as they could fit onto their thin-for-humans frame.

An under-muscled, under-aggressive Human had just thrown a Vorax at four other Vorax, and picked up a transport unit that was four times their own weight - passengers included. And then ran a four-minute mile with that burden.

This was how Humanity gained its reputation. And this was how they kept it.

[1] From the Dictionary of Confounding Human Terms: finger foods with a lengthy shelf life and debatable nutritional value. See also: nibbles, nibblies, bento and packed lunch.

[Image (c) Can Stock Photo / Ig0rZh]

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