Lisbeth had learned at least a few things in her lengthy study of korinthidons, and one of those things was to watch the way that they behaved and then follow their lead. It did not take long for the korinthidons to explore the island, and soon they seemed to find some areas of interest. Without being told where the theft was going on, they managed to make their way to the very farms where the theft had been the worst, those farms which were the furthest distance from the port. Lisbeth and Hephizbah, along with the crown prince, decided to visit such areas before the crown prince returned to the palace. Not only did the crown prince want to repot on his successful diplomacy with the korinthidons, in following after his grandfather’s efforts, but the possibility of smuggling that decreased the wealth of the area and of the imperial coffers was of high interest to him. After the pleasant trip through the agricultural island, it was clear that the part of the island that was furthest from the port was also the poorest, from what could be readily seen.
“Thank you for visiting us,” the local farmers said to the crown prince and his associates.
“No problem,” the crown prince said, with nods from the others. “We think it is important to look after the well-being of all of our people, no matter where they happen to be.”
“As you can see, we are but very modest farmers here,” the tea farmer said, speaking for his neighbors.
“I see that,” the prince said. “If you do not mind me saying so, I think that you should be less modest living than you are at present, and I hope we can find out why.”
“That would be much appreciated,” the farmers replied. “We would like to be wealthier than we are.”
At this point the korinthidons made some noises and they looked at various items that were stuck in the farms. A quick scan demonstrated that these were sending out some kind of signal into space. “Are these yours?” asked Lisbeth.
“No,” the farmers said, somewhat concerned.
“Could you disable these for us?” Lisbeth asked the dinosaurs, who nodded as they tore at the machines and shredded them apart.
“How does the trade work between here and the port?” the crown prince asked.
“Well, we do our planting and harvesting, and when we have finished harvesting here, however much we get, we take our harvest via carts to the port, and then it gets sent off to the capital, I guess,” the tea farmer said. “We aren’t really involved much with the trading aspect of things.” The rest of the farmers agreed with this.
“I hope this solution helps us all get to be more well off,” the crown prince said to general laughter.
It quickly became apparent to the crown prince that the farmers in this remote community were not smuggling to avoid paying their taxes, and so he quickly left to return home with his companion to report to his father what had happened. The other four had more business to do. It was obvious that there was no infrastructure here for trade that occurred by sea, and the route by land was fairy rudimentary, without a great deal of wealth to be found. Yet the area was clearly a fertile land and there was wealth to be found. The dinosaurs continued to keep guard over the plantations, and as the weeks went by the two women wrote some reports and commented on what they had done, and what the dinosaurs were doing. When the time for the winter term was up, they too returned home, having left the island’s farms in good hands. One of the reports was to the lady who was in charge of the pre-cognition team, because there was likely to be something of interest here. And with that, they had to go.
It was some months before any trouble was noted. By this time, there was a bored cop from the capital area who was sitting around waiting for something to happen. And what happened was somewhat dramatic, the sound of screaming dinosaurs and a crashing ship. It was the crashing of the ship that drew the farmers, the cop, and the dinosaurs to investigate. The ship was wrecked pretty seriously but inside the ship there was a small crew of people who were soon dragged out of the ships unconscious. When they woke up, they were in the holding cell at Port Maddon, wondering what happened. The local officer was happy to explain.
“Well, your ship crashed and we pulled you out. Obviously you were up to no good,” the officer said.
“Where are we?” the spokesman for the ship said.
“This is Port Maddon, of the Multipian Empire,” the officer continued.
“And we are under arrest at the moment?” the spokesman said.
“That’s right,” the officer said.
“I demand my rights,” the spokesman said.
The officer stared at him as if he was some sort of alien.
“Are you deaf?” the spokesman said in a rough version of common speech. “I demand my rights.”
“Do you know where you are?”
“This is, at least as far as I know, Multi Prime,” the spokesman said.
“Are you a Multipian citizen?”
“No,” the spokesman said. “Does that matter?”
“Yes, it does. Where are you citizens?” the officer continued.
“That’s complicated,” the spokesman said.
The officer made a silent request for urgent imperial backup, and the first to arrive was the bored officer from the precognition team, along with one of the pairs of the korinthidons.
“Who are those monsters?” the men said, panicking.
“These are a couple of the royal korinthidons, a type of dinosaur that is native on this planet and that resides all over the empire,” the officer said.
The prisoners looked at each other in some sense of alarm. “We hadn’t seen these dinosaurs here before in our travels here,” the spokesman said cautiously.
“That was a gap that we felt it necessary to rectify,” the officer said.
“Obviously,” the spokesman said.
“Why did you call for me?” asked the pre-cog officer.
“These men are not from around here,” the officer said. “They demanded their rights and stated they weren’t from around here, and you just heard them say that they have visited here often without realizing that there were korinthidons around.”
“Yes, I am sure the capital will want to try these guys a lot,” the pre-cog officer said. The three prisoners were watched and when they fell asleep they were brought, bound and sedated, into a prison carrier vehicle to be taken to the imperial courts, to be the first cases tried as part of the precognition team. The trial went about as well as could be expected when guilt is obvious and when prisoners are not used to the legal system in question. There was no protection against self-incrimination and the trial was lengthy and filled with a great deal of unpleasant discussion. It was determined that the ship, whose parts were observed and taken in for observation, to see if there were any capabilities that might be worth adopting, was involved in a smuggling effort from off-planet, and that the people involved were representing some of the more unpleasant elements from old earth. Once the ship had been examined thoroughly, it was determined that there were ways to bypass the security from the starbase in orbit around the planet. These vulnerabilities were corrected. It was determined that all human settlements and farming communities were in serious need of their own local korinthidons, and so gradually more and more efforts were made to bring small populations from the Southern continent to other places where they quickly bred and expanded their population on Multi Prime as well as other planets.
Lisbeth and Hephizbah and heir associates had a lot more work to do with all of this, as it became obvious that it was the lack of interaction between humans and korinthidons that was responsible for the lack of bonding that had existed between them. It did not take very long before there were a great many connections between the two species, and many people who were able to provide insights into some of the patterns that they found. Some of the patterns that had been seen still held. A parent with a bond passed a potential bond onto his or her children. Dinosaurs bonded with people based on a complex series of factors which included personality and temperament, homosocial bonds, the rank of both beings within the social hierarchy of each species, as well as the relationships that each was a part of. It was determined that bonds increased the sttaus of both individuals, such that Lisbeth, whose family came from relatively ordinary backgrounds, and Hephizbah, who came from very plain and simple folk, quickly found their status rising immensely because they were bonded with dinosaurs, each other, as well as the royal family. This was not found to be an isolated phenomenon either, and once it became better known, then the desire of people to bond with appropriate dinosaurs increased dramatically, even at the cost of some of the privacy in one’s thoughts and feelings that one might come to expect.
It goes without saying that it was not hard at all for there to be volunteers for the pre-cognition team when it was understood that bonding with these beings made for an instant increase in one’s own social attainments and one’s own position within society. As it was seen that even those people without a particularly high degree of ambition were able to serve the realm and thus themselves far better when their thoughts and feelings were aligned with other people and the dinosaurs of the realm, then that alignment was quick to take place across wide segments of the population. There were, of course, some antisocial elements who were not quick to desire to bond with other people or with the dinosaurs, but these people received the proper and appropriate consequences of their antisocial leanings and quickly found themselves existing as marginal populations within the empire, while elites were found not necessarily among those who were ambitious for power, but who were ambitious to serve and who happened to find, almost by accident, that they held a great deal of power in various areas of life. And that was precisely as it should be.
We would be remiss not to mention some of what happened to the unfortunate smugglers after they were found out. All things considered, things did not go too badly for them. They were, of course, sold into slavery until such point as their debt to the people of Port Maddon was repaid. Although they did not have the best work ethic, they were able to repay a great deal of the lost resources of the area, and also worked to build up the infrastructure in such a way that it became a vastly wealthier area, and this was to the general happiness of everyone involved. It so happened that as things got better with Port Maddon and Maddon Island as a whole that things got better with other remote areas once dinosaurs and mankind were living in harmony. The Southern continent was still left alone to dinosaurs, but they were seen as capable of defending themselves, and those people who did visit were in time tolerated as researchers and scientists and the like, and even if they did not build permanent buildings, the search for whatever mysteries were there began in earnest, and promised to reveal much of interest. But that is a story for another time.