Rhats!: A Takamo Universe Novella

Rhats!: A Takamo Universe Novella

Rhats! by Kerry Nietz is one of several stories dedicated to transforming the Takamo Universe–a strategic science fiction Massive Multiplayer Online game (MMO)–into written words. In Rhats!, we follow the exploits of Frohic Smerch, a muto. As the author describes them, mutos or rhats as they are sometimes called, “are a mammalian race that resemble a cross between a human and a Terran rat.” Frohic’s brother, Deav, is supposed to go into space on a contract arranged by the Smerch patriarch. After a hunting fatality takes Deav’s life, Frohic is coerced into taking Deav’s place to satisfy the family name and contract. Despite his lack of ambition to leave his planet, Frohic succumbs to the pressure.

Aboard the spaceship, humans, here called “umans” by the mutos, rule. They need the mutos’ smaller size and agility for salvage operations. Frohic becomes acquainted with the range of other muto personalities onboard including a bully and his cronies, an earnest supervisor, and a hungry muto who is willing to trade advice for food. The salvage adventure goes well enough until the bully insists that Frohic join him on an unauthorized outing. This happens at about the midpoint of the story and sets up the denouement of the tale.

Those looking for a somewhat humorous story with an arc, decent pacing, and sufficiently developed characters will enjoy Rhats! The tale does not depend on familiarity with the Takamo Universe though reading Rhats! may make you curious about that world. Rhats! and other  universe stories are available at the Takamo Bookstore.

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