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  • Writer's pictureHaslan Hammoud


Updated: Jul 7, 2021

Hello dear Reader, it has been a few months I know. It's getting more difficult to find the time to write these out and Ms Chen and I are finding it more difficult to come across functional society. Nevertheless we are here today to talk to you about these strange new creatures we've come across. By now we've all seen a Xenomal, or Xeno for short, roaming about. But what exactly are they? Giant beasts bent on brutal dismemberment? Trusty steeds of higher caliber than we've seen before? Adorable pets to bring into our homes? I met with Dr Terrel Williams a zoologist and environmental engineer at the former Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management to ask him some questions about the creatures we call Xenos.

Haslan Hammoud: Hello Doctor Williams, thank you again for agreeing to speak with us. would you care to tell people who you are? Dr Terrel Williams: Yes of course, thank you. My name is Doctor Terrel Williams, I have a Doctorate in Zoology from UCAS and worked as an Environmental engineer and consultant before the Stock and now am the main Smoke caregiver with the Sweetriders as well as Xeno consultant for a nearby Chiliagon facility.

HH: Alright a lot to unpack there, let's dive right in! So what exactly is a Xeno? DTW: Well firstly I would like to say to your readers that what I am going to say is mostly conjecture. There hasn't been enough grounded studies to truly corroborate my findings, though I suppose that is the world we live in now. To answer your question Xeno's are animals. Just like the animals we have been dealing with for the entire existence of humanity albeit a little bigger than we're used to. There appear to be two types of Xeno's composed of mutated versions of our Earth animals and completely new species that may be entirely alien. Though I should say that it may be that they are all mutated and we are just not used to seeing a fruit fly with a five foot wingspan.

HH: I definitely wouldn't want to see that no. How is it that these Xeno's came to be mutated versions of the animals we knew? DTW: I have friends that worked in a nearby Chiliagon facility whose running theory is that direct exposure to Stock Terrforming ( that is to say the Technology they are using to change our environment) can expedite the evolutionary mutation process of a species resulting in the Xeno's we see today. Basically animals that have been exposed to Silver energy, the main essence of the Stock, mutate into different versions of themselves.

HH: Are Xeno's dangerous? DTW: We just watched a mutated black bear the size of an SUV try to invade on the territory of a strange Moose like Xeno twice it's size and be dismembered and you ask if they are dangerous? [ we laugh] DTW: It honestly depends. Much like the animals of old, some Xeno's will be aggressive and some more docile. Some it will depend on their mood. Take these Smokes here for example. A whole new breed of hyper intelligent Cervidae, or deer, that are perfectly content working with humans as steeds. We Sweetriders have been able to domesticate and partner with the Smokes very well over the past while but have also seen a Smoke who was insulted kick a hole through a womans chest. Before the world went to Hell I once saw a house cat tear into someone for stepping on his tail, so animals have been plenty dangerous for a long time. That being said I would caution people from approaching any Xeno's they see out in the wild, especially the big ones. With their new found size and strength many of these new Xeno's are beginning to realize humans are not the threat we once were. HH: You mentioned the intelligence of the Smokes that the Sweetriders use- DTW: I would be careful using the word " use" around them, they don't like it and seem to consider it a mutually beneficial partnership. Like I said, very intelligent. HH: Okay noted. Have you seen this sort of intelligence in other Xeno's as well? DTW: I have yes though I wouldn't say all Xeno's are like that. Some like the Casters, larger beavers with sharpened teeth and bristles like a porcupine, are strictly territorial and aggressive where as Thrashers, a sort of squirrel wolf hybrid, have been reported to build traps and lead whole human hunting parties into them.

HH: Are all Xeno's just mutated versions of animals we already know from the Pre War World? DTW: Not at all. There are strange creatures out there that don't resemble anything I've ever seen before. ShadowFangs, a strange beast that seems to manipulate the light around it, Skymads, giant whale like beings that float through the air and I've even heard stories of creatures that make people live out their nightmares. HH: Well that all sounds horrifying, thank you so much. Is there anything you would like to leave with our readers Doctor? DTW: Thank you Dr, Hammoud. I would like to say that there are scary things out there, giant beasts, dinosaur like creatures, and living nightmares but the Smokes teach us there are also wonderful beings out there too. In a world of uncertainty and hardship that has been thrust on us I take solace in knowing there are also some wonderful new additions to life on earth. Doctor Williams and the Sweet Riders left to head back into the forests shortly after the interview. I would like to thank the Doctor for his time and thank the people out there that are still there trying to make sense of this crazy world, and I promise to keep doing my part by finding those people and passing on the information to you. Hope in Humanity -Haslan Hammoud '30'

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