"1... 2... 3..."
"Now we know it's three seconds deep!" -- OohLookShiny
Humans. The Ch'voth had been essentially using them as cannon fodder for a passage of months before they realised two things:
First - humans were extremely hard to kill.
Second - their primary method of finding answers seemed to be 'throw things at it'.
It didn't matter what the question was. They would throw things at it. The Ch'voth theorised that most of their science evolved in the same way.
How fast is light? Let's throw some at some spinning gears and see!
Can we make a bridge here? Let's throw a rope across and find out!
Can we colonise this new planet? Let's throw some people and equipment there!
And, one that Ch'terin saw herself: How deep is this hole? Let's drop a rock in it!
"Ssh!" The human was counting under their breath. "Five. It's five seconds deep..." Now they had a stick. And a human with a stick could do terrible things indeed. "With a fall rate of eight DU's per second per second... hm, hm, hm... One hundred DU's to the bottom of that thing. And there's no telling if it goes out."
Ch'terin watched the human poke at the ground with their stick.
"Can't go back. If we go down, we might be cut off worse..." the human sighed. "You're not going to make it if I scout and backtrack all the time, and I have to save you because I like getting paid." Another sigh. "You're not going to like this, my friend... but I'll have to carry you."
"That... that goes against protocol," objected Ch'terin. She did not voice her concerns about this dangerous mammal pack-bonding with her. Now was not the time.
"You like living. I like you living. What's to argue about?" said the human. And it was not as if Ch'terin could actually fight them. Humans were frighteningly strong.
And frighteningly fast. And frighteningly cavalier with their own lives. And... just plain frightening.
Ch'terin took all of her sedatives, but was still amber-lining her stress indicators by the time the human got back to their vessel.
Humans, she would later report, also solved problems by throwing themselves at them.