"The moon rose like a silver disk in the sky to mirror the same silver pool on the ground. At that pool's center sat a white oblong shape, blemishless and perfectly intact. Nothing moved, and nothing was to be heard as the cold quiet of the night set in once again. Yet as the shimmering light of the Aurora Borealis reflected off its surface, symmetrical lines appeared. Like a blossom of an alien flower opening, the pod opened slowly and revealed a dark interior. In the dim light, serpentine shapes writhed and the soft subdued whirr and whines of mechanical locomotion were unleashed. As the petals pulled further apart, contained within the interior was revealed to be an anthropomorphic lupine figure, head cast down and arms held loosely at his sides. One by one, cables begin to withdraw from ports along his form, clicks and hisses of pneumatic valves closing marking each detachment. Black latex eyelids rolled back and backlit red optics flashed to life, the male figure moving as systems started up. His head rolled upright, ears spinning and perking to attention. Higher from the pod he rose, propelled upward as the petals at last reached their fully extended positions.
And there he stood for what seemed like forever, thoughts consolidating as he booted, facts and graphical data scrolling across his vision while silently inside that synthetic skull a history lesson was being taught. Phiko Misit was alive, intact where mind and personality were concerned. Yet he was not alone, the symbiotic intelligence from the crashed ship bonding and calibrating herself to the new host she had acquired. The two were now one; the female AI having transformed and assimilated the warrior wolf Tipisk into a machine for her needs and rewarding his sacrifice with his memories and mind unaltered.
At once, he broke from his trance and begin to stare down at himself. A hand was brought up, fingers curling one by one into a fist as he watched, muzzle held agape astounded. Questions were asked and answered between the two through digital conversation. The wolf glanced up, seeing his lost spear still resting at the crater's edge and knowing what he must do now. A foot rose out of the pod and stepped onto the smooth silver pool; the surface hard beneath his textured latex rubber pads while metal claws clacked neatly against it. The other followed, and the now robot Native walked smoothly over to retrieve it. Kneeling down and placing a hand on his thigh, he looks down the path he'd come up. The others of his tribe would be looking for him, undoubtedly. It was time to return home and show them what he'd become... What they too would become in time."
An AWESOME piece of artwork from the ever-wonderful Psebae of Smokepaw in an alternate universe, finding the fallen "meteorite" his tribe was looking for... And suffering the fate his discovery cost him. Poor wolf... He's never going to be the same!
This is an alternate version done as a bit of artistic freedom by P-sebae. A sharp contrast to the typical black Smokepaw, I think Qzurr and his suggestion of a "Winter Mode" is quite fitting. Even in the snow, the wolf is perfectly suited for his hunt. ;)
The rest of the story is found here: https://www.weasyl.com/submission/574544/a-fallen-gift (Sorry about the formatting issue, Weasyl is being difficult.)