Em walked across her quarters and stood in front of her window. Like all the other quarters on Bravo, the entire forward wall of her main living area was a window to the universe. Em soaked in the magnificent view and took a deep breath, her chest rising with the slow sure steadiness of the morning sun. Standing in front of the window was as close to standing on the bow of her father’s ship as she could get. The resounding smack of the bow embracing each wave remained ever present in her mind’s ear. Only the fresh cool salty sea spray kissing her face and the warm southern breeze teasing her hair were lacking.

One other thing was missing. Like the memory of her first kiss, Sam had joyfully followed her everywhere onboard her father’s ship. The memory of him sticking his nose in the air over the bow with the wind blowing his hair back behind his ears always brought a smile to her face. All he needed was a scarf and goggles and she was sure he would have taken flight. He seemed to enjoy sailing the Nusian seas as much as she did. She missed his soft fur rubbing against her tanned leg, the wagging of his tongue and the joy and happiness he brought with his unconditional love. Sam was about the best pampus a girl could ever want. He would have liked the view on Bravo. If only she could see his tail wagging with enthusiasm one more time.

Em had placed her desk just a few feet in front of her massive view of the cosmos. Moving around the backside, she pulled out the silver aeron chair and settled into the supple leather seat, her elbows on the desk, her hands under her chin. The deafening silence in her quarters, of space travel in general, seemed to taunt her, a stark ever-present reminder she was not on the sea, not home. With an unconscious sigh a measure of tension escaped into the stillness. She opened the top drawer and pulled out a single sheet of paper and began to write.

Dear Father,

I’m sorry it has been a few days since my last correspondence. So much has happened in the last week I hardly know where to start. Rog has been terribly injured in a confrontation with our captives. We are fearful his wounds may be fatal. Trev has done everything he can, but we need outside help. Mairi has been abducted and Kyra and Von have left in the Pod to find her. Yul is beside herself. You know how she hates being helpless. Trev seems rather depressed. We are all under a great deal of stress. If only you were here, I know I would find the comfort I seek.

I know I say it all the time, but I miss you terribly. Please tell Sam I miss him too. Every time I stand in front of my window I feel as if I’m transported to the ship and I would be lying if I didn’t say my heart sinks just a little lower knowing with each passing day we move further and further apart. Soon, I hope, we will find a place to settle. And then father, you and Sam can come and join us. Just you wait and see the welcome party I have planned for you two. Believe me, I’ve had plenty of time to prepare every minute detail. I’d tell you more, but I don’t want to spoil the surprise.

I’d better get some rest now. You know how Pinky gets if I stay up too late. Besides, with all that is going on, I want to be ready if they need me. I love you father and I think of you every day. Give Sam a rub for me and make sure you take him with you to the bow. He so loves to stick his nose in the breeze.

Love,

Em

As she did most nights, Em folded the paper in precise thirds, just like father had taught. She no longer needed to measure. She slid the letter into its envelope, turned it around and sealed it with a kiss. Flipping it over, she laid the letter on her desk and gently pressed it down, running her fingers from left to right with firm pressure. Her letters were sealed like the bunks on her father’s ship; one could bounce quarters off them.

Reaching again for her pen, Em addressed the letter and in the upper corner where postage would normally go, she wrote the number 163. She hesitated just for a moment, her eyes scanning the missive, weighing it in her hands as if somehow she could mentally imbue the correspondence with the essence of her love. Kissing the letter, she opened the left hand drawer and placed the letter neatly behind number 162. Each letter stood silently at attention, all in proper order, all waiting patiently like stone soldier on station, waiting for their call to action.

Categories: Story, Emy, Letters, Bravo

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