[Editor’s Note: This chapter directly precedes the Torpedoes post.]

“Yul, come on in,” said Kyra. “What do I owe the pleasure of this visit?”

Yul smiled, awkwardly. “Just wanted to say hi and check on an old friend. Haven’t had a chance to talk to you since before—“

“It’s okay,” interjected Kyra.

“I’m not worried about ‘it,’ responded Yul. I don’t know what happened in that room but Rog, well, he hasn’t been the same. How are you doing sweetie? Are you the same? Are you okay?”

“I’m fine.”

Yul’s big pale blue eyes didn’t waver.

“Really, I’m okay. Would you like some snizzle?”

“Fine? Really? Oh I can see that,” said Yul, ignoring the question with raised brow. “You put yourself with open wounds in direct contact with the animus virus, you have some sort of other-worldly experience that knocks you into a coma for the better part of two weeks. You wake to learn the love of your life, who you tried to save, is dead and the rest of the crew has held his service, without you. Why wouldn’t you be just fine.”

Kyra sighed. “Come here my friend. Give me your hands. What would you have me do?”

“Break down and cry. Throw some things, break a few others. Yell at me. Show some emotion for crying out loud. Aren’t you pissed? Bitter? Angry? Mad as hellocks?”

“At who?”

“Fate. Life. Us. The virus. This ship has seven Hynerians left on it. Only three are male. One is old enough to be your father. One is still wet behind the ears. And the third, well, he’s spoken for. You had your love and he’s gone and the chance of you ever having that again is virtually nil. I don’t mean to be harsh Kyra but I’m just not buying the fine bit. I saw your hands.”

“Be careful with making assumptions,” winked Kyra. “You look quite sexy when you get your ire up. I can see what Rog sees in you. Such brilliant blue eyes that sparkle in the starlight. Are you sure I can’t get you some snizzle? Perhaps with a little snoot? Goldie?”

“Coming right up Kyra. I took the liberty,” purred Goldie.

“Thanks Goldie. Make mine without.”

“Frail that,” said Yul. “Goldie, add her shot in mine.”

“So how is Rog?”

“Different, but I didn’t come here to talk about Rog or let you change the subject with a touch of humor. I’m serious Kyra. Talk to me. What happened in that room? What did Rog see that he can’t or won’t explain? Even you, sitting here now, look somehow different.”

“Really? How?”

“Well, your demeanor doesn’t fit. You look as calm and relaxed as can be. Under the circumstances I would say you’re either insane, on meds, or completely entrenched in denial. What did Trev give you?”

“Drink your snoot Yul. Your mind could use a little grease to ease the grip it has on your imagination. Now, have I told you how lovely you look tonight? Did you bring your toothbrush?”

“Oh my Janus girl. You’re wiggin, not very well I might add, but I like it,” smiled Yul, letting her fingernail trace its way up Kyra’s arm. “Are you sure you want me to take advantage of you in this state? You know, I’ve never had a lover who didn’t want more. I could make you forget there ever was an opposite sex.”

“Oh Yul, I have no doubt of that,” said Kyra as she leaned in close, her eyes just inches from Yul’s. “But there is one thing I need to tell you.”

“Kyra,” interrupted Goldie.

“Not now Goldie.”

“Kyra, there is an urgent request from the bridge for your presence. Rog said something about visitors.”

“Tell him I’m on my way.”

Categories: Story, Yul, Kyra, Goldie