As Jali explains basic Harvest practices, my peripherals catch two figures heading our way. My ears immediately tune out Jali's words, and my body goes on the defensive. I don't know if the approaching figures are friends or foes, so I keep my eyes on Jali and my body ready. 

  When they stop inches from the table, Jali looks up with a smile, and my nerves ease a bit. I give the two a few timid glances, and I am shocked to see what appears to be another human. Since her eyes seemed trained on Jali, I let myself look her over. 

  She seems to be the same age as me. She is super pretty with her dark hair, green-bluish eyes, and straight nose...I wish I were as pretty as her. 

"Morning Jali, I see your harvested has arrived," the tall purple being says, and Jali nods smoothly. 

"This is Fiadh (fee-ah). She was the closest to death I have ever seen. We were just discussing the tournament," Jali says, and the other human looks at me for the first time.  

She practically beams at me, but I am too shocked to return the gesture. I wasn't expecting her to look at me suddenly and see me staring at her. She is probably wondering what is wrong with me. 

"Hi. My name's Krystal. I got here yesterday," she says after a long awkward pause and sticks out her hand. 

I force myself to return the gesture even though I don't really trust any of these strangers. At any time, things could go south. A man or male alien could get angry at us. These females could turn on me and stop being nice at any time. I must stay cautious. This isn't home, but I'm not safe either. 

"If you are afraid, don't be. The people here are really nice. Zalu has been nothing but kind," she suddenly says, and I can't help but grin. 

"Am I that obvious," I mumble lowly, and she laughs loudly, drawing unnecessary attention to our table. 

"A little," she replies after her loud laugh finally dies, and the purple alien places a hand on her shoulder. 

"I will go retrieve our food," she says, and the human girl nods before taking a seat at the four-top table. 

"So what's your story Fiadh," she asks, and I force myself to chuckle awkwardly.

"I was sick, and now I am here. I didn't have much of a life," I explain, and she glances toward Jali before looking back at me. 

"What did you have," she asks, and a million answers zip through my head as I stare at her. 

I had some sickness that caused blood to spew from my mouth, but I was never allowed to have a physician look me over. I had an abusive father and a fantastic mother. I had two brothers who wanted me eyes fall to the table as my heartbeat becomes almost painful. 

"I don't want to talk about that anymore. I'm not sick now, and I want to move on," I whisper, and I can sense her discomfort as she looks away from me quickly. 

"Are you from Ireland originally," she asks suddenly, and I nod?

Isn't she from Ireland too? How can she not tell by my accent? 

"Your English sounds so American," she replies with a cautious smile, and utter confusion hits me before I look at Jali for an answer. 

"It's the translator. Krystal sounds Irish to you, and you sound American to her. Zalu and I sound different than we normally do as well. The tone of our voice is correct, but our pronunciation is different. If you knew how to read lips, you would realize our mouths don't match the words you hear," Jali explains, and my eyes widen as I remember her messing with my head before pressing a couple of buttons. 

"What other questions do you have, Fiadh," Jali asks, and I almost sigh out loud in relief for the distraction she is offering.

"Who is all in the tournament? What do they look like," I ask, not truly caring what the answer is? 

"Okay, this is a long list, so don't feel bad if you don't remember everything," Jali says as the purple alien returns with two bowls of food. 

  I nod and hunker down as the purple being hands the human her bowl. 

"The Vaals are a strong people with even stronger ties to their family. They resemble humans the most. They look like the people from the Earth's country, Africa. They have three participants in this Harvest. All three are brothers. The Coks are next. They are a resourceful people. They come from a hot and sandy planet. They live primarily underground to avoid the heat and to be close to their water source. They have fifteen participants in this Harvest. Due to the harshness of their planet, they are known to be excellent fighters which is why they have so many. Their skin is a tan color. The Hassins have six fighters participating, and like us, they range in color. Their tones are more metallic-like, and their features are sharp. Their planet is a cold one. They are thick beings and loud. They are typically the life of the party, as humans say. Shikazs are from a planet filled with tall trees. They are very uniform in color. Their skin is a rich brown, and their eyes are dark green. They enjoy solitude and have small families. There are five of them competing. Makskins have the harshest planet. But they have built domes that encapsulate their cities, so the environment is controlled. Their skin is typically a burgundy shade, and there are five of them competing as well. Glortinons have an interesting appearance. They are light in color ranging in pale yellows, but what makes them fascinating is their glow. Their skin has taken in so much UV light from their many suns that it literally glows. Their planet has no night. They have six competing in the harvest. Froles are fast. They come from a planet that has almost no trees. They are wild-like in personality and features. Their skin is striped from their head down to their toes. They are striped so they can blend in with the grass. They see great at night and are similar to the big cats on your planet when it comes to hunting. They typically choose females from their own planet. They have seven males competing. Next are the Bronkorks. They are the largest beings fighting on our side in the war. They typically stand over seven feet tall and have orangey skin. They come from a planet full of mountains and hills. Like the Hassins, they are loud and boisterous. They have five competitors.

Last but not least are the Gaimos. Their planet is swamp-like. They have thin pupils and scales on certain areas of their skin for protection. They tend to be quiet. Three Gaimos are competing. Two planets had no competitors this harvest, and those are the Keas and the Peulos. The Peulos come from a watery planet and like to swim. They are blue or green in color. Kea's are all around you. We are the most colorful. We view everyone as family and hate conflict. Fighting in this war is hard for our people. That is why Keas host the Harvest. We are the most trusted," Jali explains, and I realize that I will have to bond myself to one of these creatures before too long. 

"Wow," I breathe, unable to think of anything else to say, and the girls beside me nod in agreement. 

"Oh, look. The other humans have all arrived. That was faster than usual," the purple one suddenly says, and I follow everyone else gaze to see three more humans walking towards us with a tall alien. 

  Two of the humans are clearly Asian, while the third is black. I can't get a read on them, so I drop my gaze. 

"Fellow Harvestees, may I present. Zuri, Xiu, and Jia. They all just arrived," the blue Kea who just arrived says, and the human beside me stands up suddenly.  

"Hi, my name is Krystal. That's Fiadh," she says easily, as if we have been friends for year's and I blush.

Krystal shakes their hands, and I awkwardly hunch against the table while trying to appear smaller. 

"Where are you from," Zuri asks as Krystal sits back down with a flop. 

"I am from Ohio. Umm, well, the United States. Where are you three from," she answers, sounding a little unsure. 

"I am from Africa," Zuri answers, and my brows lift with curiosity. 

  I don't know much about Earth and its countries since my father doesn't allow me to go to school. But I have heard about a few of the big ones. 

"China," Xiu says shyly, and again my curiosity flames to life. 

"That's cool," Krystal says, and my ears ready for the last girl's homeland. 

"California in the United States," She says, and I almost nod. 

Figures there would be two Americans. 

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