Declaration of war
He accompanied his father in the Imperial Palace when the matter of war against the Terran Confederation was discussed by the Council of Eight. Jukaga was eager for the fight, and seeing that his father was the only one who disagreed with The Emperor's decision, he looked at him with a pained, embarrassed expression in his eyes.
He and his father were present at the assembly on 2634.155 where Gilkarg nar Kiranka briefed the commanders and nobles about planned assault. After the briefing Jukaga excitedly announced to his father that he was asked to fly the lead strike, but his response was less than enthusiastic. Vakka knew that the offer was a direct suggestion of the Crown Prince, a move to make himself a factor in internal clan politics: Jukaga was the only direct heir of the clan, and his death would cause an internal splintering among his cousins. Fearing for his son's life, Vakka asked Admiral Nargth to take him with his staff.
Vakka arranged to sent him to Fawcett's World to become exposed to human culture; he intended it to be for a year, but the move of the war sooner would change the plans. Vakka mentioned the knowledge on the customs of the enemy would be an asset for him during the assault, and the Admiral reluctantly agreed, even though he had not "wet his claws" yet.
With the Terrans
Before his arrival to Fawcett's World, his father forced him to study some holo tapes of the humans, thus was able to learn some of their standard language.
Upon his arrival, he walked by the humans, dirturbed by the newly known to him scent. He heard one of them calling him "bastard" in their language, which he recognised and stopped and whirled about, causing laughter by Harga. Jukaga wondered why they don't execute him, to get the reply that executing every insubordinate one would leave no one alive; Jukaga wondered why his father let them live.
Under an ulanna tree, served the ceremonial greeting cup of jirak by Harga, they discussed the forthcoming campaign against the Terrans. He felt a human approaching the from behind and he was alerted and bristled. He was surprised to hear him talk in their language, then serve himself some drink and join them like an equal, talking calmly. He was ready to snarl out an angry comment at him. To Harga's amusement, this shock made Jukaga forget that he was not one of them, and he addressed at Abram directly; the human surprised him once more, saying that he has studied the sacred Ikgara Kutgaga. Watching them exchanging words in their own language, Jukaga shifted to the dialect of the Imperial Court, asking why Harga allows all this, to be told that Abram knows even that. Harga stunned him admitting that he considers him a friend. He heard the unknown word "Cats" which Harga explained is a breed of pets on Earth comparable to themselves. He bristled hearing about pets, causing the other two to laugh. Jukaga said he found all this pointless, prompting Harga to remind him (in front of their enemy) that they are preparing for war, that unlike how the Prince things, will go on for generations, and his father wants him to know what they will fight, as future ruler of the clan.
Abram joked saying that he should try to kill him because of his position, only to retract, saying that he is too old and weak to fight a Kilrathi; it was beyond Jukaga's comprehension that a captive wants to stay alive without honor, and asked why he didn't take his own life. Abram said that he is curious to see what the future will bring, sure that they will win the war, and he will survive. The audacious statement enraged him. In his speech Abram said that he expects from them a jak-tu, troubled Jukaga who looked at Harga, who was also bemused. Abram went on saying that the jak-tu, while considered proper for the Kilrathi, is considered cowardly by humans; with that Jukaga began to stand up to punish this insult, but Harga ordered him to let him speak. Abram explained that humans were a prey species before developing tools, admitting it without humiliation, something beyond Jukaga's comprehension. Harga smiled, and repeated that he will learn new things from him. Jukaga realised that there are alien ways of thinking, beyond their comprehension; new thoughts of realization started to open inside him and paid attention to the alien. He explained that hunters and prays trigger a primal reaction to each other, the desire to hunt, or terror. Jukaga to his own surprise retracted his exposed talons. He was a bit disappointment of the banality when Abram mentioned that humans might protect fiercely their children, something that all species do. Jukaga didn't answer his question if they devour those they defeat, and answered to him that the purpose of a jak-tu is to overpower a prey with a single blow; Abram concluded that the Kilrathi never run into prey like humans before and that would mean the destruction of the Empire; the certainty of this statement brought a chill to his spine. Harga interjected that Vakka already knew it, and wanted the same for Jukaga before fighting.
- William R. Forstchen, Action Stations, Chapter 0
- William R. Forstchen, Action Stations, Chapter 5
- William R. Forstchen, Action Stations, Chapter 1
- William R. Forstchen, Action Stations, Chapter 4