On the planet of Zulaire, legend had it that to find the tracks of the fabled urabu in front of one would guarantee a year of good fortune. Urabu were majestic, long legged gazelle-like creatures, with three impossibly sweeping ebony horns, to whom were attributed all sorts of magical powers. Glimpsing the creature itself for even a second would be a stroke of luck or divine favor, or both, conferring at least a decade of blessings from the spirits. Urabu were rare, some even insisted extinct, or perhaps creatures of myth altogether.
To touch one was known to be impossible . . . for how does one touch what does not exist?
Andrianda Markriss, outworlder by birth, longtime resident of Zulaire, stood holding her breath in a forest clearing. Her entire concentration was on not disturbing the five creatures now ranged in front of her.
They were inworlders, natives of Zulaire, judging by the way they sucked in the poisonous miasma. Short and stumpy of leg, with clothes that were so last season as to be laughable, they were creatures of legendary boorishness. To see one was said to guarantee seven years of bad hair days. To touch one was inadvisable, for it would result in a severe rash that presented with blistering and subcutaneous lesions, requiring the application of expensive salves.
Andrianda remained motionless as a statue, still not doing anything that might spark a flame of interest in someone reading her story.
Opening: Anonymous.....Continuation: Mignon