Taylor loaded her luggage into the trunk of her brother small Honda and waited for him to step into the bright sun. Although Jackson wasn't't of any real blood relation, he was all Taylor had. Her parents died just 2 weeks before college started in a horrifying snow mobile accident. She now stood outside the ranch they left her in the Montana hills. It was late November and it was freezing cold but she didn't't mind. She was selling the place to travel to the small island in the middle of the pacific for 18 months.
Talihan, Khi was the main capital of the Khi chain of islands and she had been approved for a special research visa. She was to live in the newly constructed visitor center and research these new "Supernatural" creatures as a part of her Cultural Anthropology Doctorate program. She would be one of only 5 humans living in the more than 40,000 square foot center. With limited access to their ancient text and technology, she could follow their evolution. And she couldn't't have been more excited. The first to study the FIRST supernatural creatures revealed to humans.
Taylor pulled her coat tighter around her neck and trudged down to the barn. Although she didn't't ride horses, she kept two donkeys and a cow after her parents died. Now they would be going over to Jackson's family farm. She hugged Sugarpop and Doodle, her donkeys, goodbye. She hustled over to Moo, her cow and patted her flank. Making sure everything was in order for the evening, she dragged herself back to the car.
Jackson sat in the Honda warming his hands over the heater. Taylor quickly climbed in and they pulled off in silence. Taylor knew Jackson was upset about her leaving but she had nothing holding her back. They had had an on and off relationship since junior year of high school. Her and Jackson had no future as she refused to give up her studies and play house wife to his rancher. And he refused to give up the ranching life. Their final goodbye would be in a mere hour and she didn't't want to taint that with an argument.
"You don't have to park, you can just pull up to the drop off" she said quietly as they pulled into the airport. Jackson nodded his head and followed the directions around to Delta. He pulled into an opening and both quickly hopped out the car. After unloading her 4 suitcases and backpack, they stood on the curb staring at each other. He suddenly swooped in and gave her a bear hug while burying his face in her wild curls. He whispered in her ear "This is always your home. With me or not. " She slowed pulled back and whispered "thank you." As he sat her down she pulled her back pack on and grabbed the cart with her suitcases. She had a lot of paperwork to do before takeoff.
After a lengthy check-in, dropping off her suit cases and almost 2 hours of extra security checks she was finally able to board her plane to LA. She would fly first to LA, then Hawaii, before finally boarding a chartered plane to Khi. They did not receive tourist so had no commercial airport, Just a private landing strip on a separate island. She would then take a boat to the small ¾ mile long island which housed the visitor's center. It would be well over 36 hours of travel before she reached her new home.
After finally settling in she pulled out her research outline notes and began to go over all the topics she had to cover during her stay. The committee that had chosen her had given her specific instructions on what she was to learn about while in Khi and she knew had better damn well return with the information or her future career would be doomed. Population, mating, reproduction, hierarchy, and social structures. Sounded simple but could be terribly difficult if they weren't't exactly forthcoming with the goods.