"Let machinery fake my place, who has time to chase. Digital is where it is. Love can always be replaced. Welcome to my consciousness. Welcome to our race. Everything is never quite enough."
Everything (is never quite enough) – Diop, Wasis
"I didn't think there were such things as space pirates." I said, batting Heero's hand away from the last slice of Pinalr, only to see it speared and eaten by Khushrenada. I gave him a dirty look and eyed the table, eventually picking a piece of Guplit, and nibbling at it carefully to avoid the spikes.
"Technically there isn't," Peacecrafto said over a mouthful of food, "But we decided it had a nice ring to it, so space pirates is what we are."
"And what exactly do you do as space pirates?" Heero asked, pouring himself more of the fermented Hisle juice.
"We rob, steal, ex... "
"Yes, we heard you the first time, but what do you mean?"
The two men exchanged glances, then Khushrenada smiled. "Space is a large place, we discovered a long time ago, that we could travel through it virtually undetectable. New elements, fuels, foods, and rare items are discovered every day, we merely... borrow them and sell them to the highest bidders."
I felt my back tense, wondering if that's what they had planned for me. The Klishana crystal after all was one of the rarest elements in the universes, and I had the only known sample. As if to answer my question, I caught Peacecrafto staring at the wings on my back. Then I realized he was staring because I'd been unconsciously flexing them, nervous at the thought of it all.
"What are those made of? We couldn't seem to identify the main element when we brought you onboard."
I didn't know how to answer. Unsure of what would be the right way to proceed, be truthful with these two pirates? Or lie to protect myself? Luckily, Heero answered for me.
"It's just crystal, nothing special. He's a new form of Fliogan we've been working on." He stepped smartly on my foot as I opened my mouth.
"Ow! Yes," I nodded quickly, "it's still very experimental."
The pirates didn't look very convinced by our little show, but never the less, did not say anything to refute it. Though, the Raskuda gave my wings a penetrating stare, meeting my eyes with a smile.
"It looks like something I should be familiar with." He said at last, leaning back in his chair and taking a sip of Hisle juice.
"Yes, I agree my friend," Peacecrafto said with a nod. "Blue crystal, what sounds familiar about that?"
I felt Heero squeeze my leg and realized I'd been flexing my wings again in a nervous gesture. I tried to stop the motion, my hand clenching around Heero's beneath the table.
"Aha!" Khushrenada jumped up suddenly, pointing a finger. "I know what it is! We're idiots dear Peacecrafto! Idiots I say!"
"Eh? How so?" The blond man said, tilting his head to the side and staring at me.
"Don't you remember? It's the Klishana! From that fateful voyage of the exploration team."
"Aahh, why so it is. And what would a boy melded with Klishana be doing in the middle of space with a Fliogan and no ship?"
"Why running away of course!" Khushrenada said happily, tapping his feet and doing a little prance around the table. "Oh what a grand treasure this is!" He leant down and beamed at me, showing his teeth. "You're safe with us, we will not harm you little one."
"But, we would like... to study these wings of yours." Peacecrafto said, standing up and coming around the table to look more closely at me.
"Yes, at least a bit of study." Pleaded the Raskuda, reaching out to run a hand down one of my wings.
Heero caught his hand, glaring at him with a deathly gaze. "Don't touch him. We obviously cannot leave this ship, and you are showing us hospitality by letting us remain with you. But, if you harm him in any way... "
Khushrenada winced, trying to free his hand. "Alright Fliogan, I get the idea, no harm will come to him, you have my contract on that."
"And you?" Heero asked Peacecrafto, turning his eyes to the taller man.
"Contract, besides, judging from the lacerations on his back and around these wings, these are recently grown." He said with a smirk. "My guess is, that you know about as much about the Klishana crystal as we do."
"Which isn't very much at all, is it?" Khushrenada said, grinning down at us.
Once again, I felt my wings nervously twitching, soft flutters against my back. It was strange how the crystal was hard and yet soft at the same time, like feathers would feel, or so I imagined. We didn't know much about it; Khushrenada was right about that. Though, I wondered if perhaps Heero knew more then he'd yet told me. He had been there when the deed had been done to me, so he must know more. But what wasn't he telling?
"If you don't mind, we'd like to go back to our room now and clean up, it's been a long journey." Heero said, standing up and gripping my shoulder tightly, pulling me to my feet. I glanced at him, realizing that there was still dried blood on his face from earlier, though the cuts had stopped bleeding.
"Certainly Mr. Yuy, our facilities our some of the best available. Enjoy yourselves." Peacecrafto said, smiling and eyeing Heero's face. "Try not to do anymore damage Mr. Maxwell."
I felt myself blush and stifled that feeling. Glancing around the room, I noticed 138 was no where in sight. "Have you seen... "
"Down here Mr. Maxwell." The small voice said, a tug on my pant leg following the command. "I will continue to remain with Mr. Khushrenada and Mr. Peacecrafto, they have much equipment onboard that I wish to look at further."
"Oh, all right 138. I'll check in with you later." The Youlin calmly clawed its way up Peacecrafto's leg, looking perfectly at home sitting on the blond mans shoulder.
"You remember where your room is?" The Raskuda asked with surprise, turning towards us again.
"Of course, 10 doors down on the left hand side." Heero muttered, already pulling me from the room, he seemed in a hurry to be gone from the pirates.
"Ah, bathing room right across from there, enjoy!" Khushrenada called happily after us; the door sliding shut as we began walking.
"So are you going to tell me what all that dragging me out of the room was about? Feeling a bit possessive Heero?" I was sitting on the bed in our room, watching as Heero paced back and forth across the floor in front of me. My shoulder still ached from the grasp he'd had on me, and I felt my anger begin building again at the thought of it.
"Men like that need to be shown what is owned by whom Duo, or else they will merely take what they want." He stopped, raking his eyes over me and coming closer. "If they know that you're mine, I don't think they will try to steal you."
"Don't be ridiculous, they wouldn't try and 'steal' me as you put it." I rolled my eyes, flopping down on my stomach, and pillowing my head with my hands.
"Duo, believe me, they would." The bed shifted as he sat beside me, a tentative hand barely touching my back below one wing. "I just don't want to see any harm come to you because of something I failed to do right."
"I can take care of myself." I said through my hands, turning my head to look at him. His face looked crestfallen, as if he'd hoped I would somehow need him more.
"I know," he said softly, his hand beginning to stroke softly, a touch that coasted feather light along my spine. He chuckled, his hand stopping in its movement for a moment. "Believe me, I can't help but be aware of that now." He said ruefully, and I glanced around to see him rubbing at the cut on his forehead.
I laughed, delighted that he finally seemed to realize it. Standing up I held out my hand to him, wagging it. "Come on, let's go hit the bathing room and I'll clean you up."
"Deal." He said as his hand slipped into mine, the warmth of it more comforting then any words he could utter.
The pirates hadn't been lying about having a well-stocked bathing facility. It was huge, at least 3 of the doors in the hallway opening into it. It had robotic massagers, steam baths, showers, a heated bathing pool, simply everything a tired traveler could've hoped for. I stripped almost as soon as I entered the large room, leaving the tattered heap of my clothes beside the door and running around to examine everything.
"Hey Heero! They even have an automatic comber!" I yelled across the room, bending down to look closer at the little robot holding various brushing devices. It blinked at me, gears whirring softly within it.
"Yes, but I thought you promised to help clean me?" Heero said from behind me, a note of peevishness in his voice.
I glanced over my shoulder to find him naked and standing with a hand on his hip beside the bathing pool.
"Oh, sorry, it's just that I've never seen such a nice bathing room onboard a ship before." I said with a grin, flipping my hair over my shoulder and checking another little robot. "What do you think this one does?" It was holding various oddly shaped devices that I couldn't identify.
There was no answer except for the soft sounds of splashing, turning around again, I found Heero already settling down inside the tub with a sigh. His eyes closed with contentment as he sank further into the water, his wings glistening with the moisture. My eyes couldn't seem to break away from him as I stared. It seemed I'd forgotten many things, like the fact that he was beautiful, truly, as only he could be.
"Are you going to help me?" He asked, his eyes remaining shut though his head turned slightly in my direction. I nodded, slipping over the edge of the huge tub and sliding into the warm water beside him.
"Ahh, that's good." I moaned happily, wiggling my toes and stretching. "Feels like I haven't bathed in years."
"Mm, we still need to try and figure out how long we were out there."
"You don't think it was that long, do you?"
"Who knows? It could have been years, the crystal and Steelshift would have kept us frozen in time, so we wouldn't have aged."
"Really? Hmm." He nodded, and I felt a foot slide over my own. Then it hooked around my leg and dragged me under. The water closed over my head, and I opened my eyes beneath it, eventually crawling up beside him and shaking my hair.
"So when are you going to tell me your last secret Heero?" I found a soft cloth sitting on the edge of the tub beside some cleaning products, and picked it up, slathering soap onto it and gently brushing it against his face.
"Ouch, ugh, you really do pack a punch."
"Sorry, but... you made me angry." I shrugged, running the cloth down his neck, over one shoulder, my fingers brushed a wing and it flexed slightly beneath my touch. "The last secret?" I reminded him, letting my hand coast over his wingtips and down beneath the water.
"It is fairly simple, you are not the only one containing the crystal."
"What?" My hand stopped just shy of his hip.
"There was a reason we knew it would be compatible with the human body, they put it inside someone else before they put it inside you."
"It was you, wasn't it Heero?"
"Yes, they thought they could help me, and I was willing to try." He wiggled, moving closer, one arm easing around me to drag my body closer. "They imbedded two fragments behind the Steelshift within my eyes. But unlike what happened to you, the crystal did not join with me so completely."
"You were too old already."
"Yes, the Klishana wouldn't merge with someone so close to adulthood."
"Why didn't I see these things when I experienced your memories?" I began wiping the cloth down his cheek, over the bridge of his nose, up his forehead, down the other cheek. Noticing that the cuts were already healing, the Steelshift closing them faster than a normal human body would have.
"I deleted all of my ship memories from the databanks. I didn't want anyone to know I'd ever been on that voyage."
"All right, that makes sense. Where did you find the crystal anyway? I've been wondering." I dropped the cloth, touching his face and letting my fingertips coast over the smooth planes and angles of it.
"It was located in a passing meteorite, we pulled a sample of it, and then went back for the rest of the crystal once it was discovered. It was assumed to come from a planet in the Relado Universe, though, we never did have a chance to find the planet." He arched his neck, tilting his head to one side as my hand made its way down to his collarbone.
"So, the crystal has a home?"
"Yes, somewhere. From what we could determine, the crystal sample we found was from it's moon, perhaps the gravitation of the planet breaking bits of it off, sending it coasting into space."
"No, I think you're wrong Heero." I said it softly, realizing what the crystal had been humming to itself inside of my mind. "The meteorite, it was a vessel, they were exploring."
"What?" His eyes opened, silvery depths looking at me. "How do you know this?" He looked truly puzzled, and I realized the crystal fragments within him really hadn't bonded with him the way mine had.
"It told me, it whispers to itself. I think it's sad sometimes, it misses its home world." I smiled slightly, letting my hand drift lazily over his wings. "Turn around so I can wash these, please?"
He did so, and I rubbed more soap on the forgotten cloth, brushing it gently against his wings. "How does it feel inside of you Heero? What does it do to you?"
"It really doesn't make itself known much, except when I need it most. As I did when I was looking for you after leaving Chang's residence. Then, it helps me to see, but not in a way that is like normal sight." His shoulder twitched, "Could you get the undersides please?"
I slipped a hand beneath one wing, pulling it out slightly and cleaning the other side of it. "How is it not normal sight?"
"With normal sight, or when I am connected to Fina, I can see as you do. But when I am forced to rely on the crystal, it does not understand regular ways of seeing. It... projects images within my mind, shadows of what is around me. Things glow, as if I am seeing as the crystal would."
I nodded though he couldn't see it with his back turned to me as it was, and started cleaning his other wing, marveling as always at the living warmth of it. "Heero, I want to find the Klishana's home planet. I think it misses its life there."
"What does it feel like within you Duo? Is it so different?" He turned around, grasping my hand and giving me a penetrating stare.
"It... it is a part of me and yet separate, like a ghost sharing my body. It's been trying to communicate with me lately, but there seems to be some sort of barrier it can't break through." I shook my head, smiling at him. "Your turn to wash me."
"A barrier?" He asked, taking the cloth and carefully cleaning my face. His touch was light, soothing as it traversed its way over my skin.
"Yes, it doesn't exactly speak my language, and it's trying to figure out how to communicate with me. The human mind is a mystery to it, so different from it's own way of life and culture that it has trouble understanding." My eyes closed of their own volition as he rubbed my neck and shoulders. I could feel the warmth of his breath against my cheek; his body pressing closer through the water that surrounded us.
"Perhaps... perhaps a study of it would help. Do you think you would mind letting those pirates look at you?"
I opened my eyes to find his face inches from own, a tiny frown marring his features. "You think you could deal with that, what with being so possessive?" I grinned at him, leaning forward to steal a kiss. A grunt of pain made me pull back, remembering the split lip I'd given him. "Sorry about that." I rubbed the little cut, watching it heal even as I touched it.
"It's alright, just surprised me a little."
He leaned forward again, and I held his face between my palms, smirking at the surprised look on it. "Uh uh, you haven't finished washing me yet."
"Oh, I'd forgotten." He smiled; mouth meeting my own for a moment before he pulled away slightly and began washing my chest. The little smile on his lips grew as the cloth slipped lower, slithering over my stomach and down to my lap. I leaned back, closing my eyes as he began sliding the soft cloth over my already growing erection. My legs spreading without any orders from my brain.
"You seem especially dirty down here, extra cleaning is needed." He whispered, chuckling as he shifted between my thighs and began kissing my neck.
"Mmm, what kind of cleaning?" My mind was slowly melting out of my ears with each caress; the cloth slipping away beneath the water as his hand enfolded me. He felt so good pressed against me the way he was, smooth and warm against my skin, smelling like soap and Heero.
"Have you ever seen the way a feline cleans?" He asked, lifting my hips up until I sat on the ledge of the bath, only my feet remaining in the water. I popped open an eye, watching as he leaned between my legs, resting his head on my thigh and nuzzling his cheek against it.
"With its tongue?"
He nodded, one hand lazily wrapping around my arousal once more, fingers toying with it. I watched as he stuck out his tongue, slowly giving my erection a lick that went from the base of it to the tip of it in one long swipe. I shivered, putting my hands down, needing more support for what I knew he was going to do next.
My fingers clenched as his mouth wrapped around me, the heat of it excruciatingly pleasurable. My own mouth opened in response, breath coming faster as he eased his way down my length, his tongue doing wonderful things as it passed over my flesh. One of my hands unconsciously went to his head, fingers wrapping themselves in his hair. As his nose brushed against my stomach, one of his fingers slowly entered my body, a shot of pure ecstasy riveting me in place.
Then he began easing back upwards, the tightness of his mouth surrounding me, so wet and sweet. Another finger joined the first, my legs opening wide with it, feet pattering against the water only to lift and rest on his shoulders. His wings brushed lightly against the soles of them, a tickling counterpoint to what his mouth and hand were doing to me. I could feel an orgasm building, the tingling of it easing through me, growing with each bob of his head, with each thrust of those fingers.
Suddenly, the feeling changed slightly, glancing down my muscles clenched at the vision he presented for my eyes. His own eyes were closed, lustful concentration on his face, looking below his face to where his hand was working within me, I realized why the sensation had suddenly changed. "Ohh... Creos Heero... "
He'd coated his fingers with the Steelshift, the smooth, slick metal joining his fingers into one object. Each thrust of them hitting that spot inside, forcing me to grip his head with both hands, my back arching, fingers clenching tightly within his hair. When I managed to open my eyes again, the Klishana was glowing inside of me, the bright sapphire of it filling the room.
Apparently, the crystal enjoyed this touching as much as I did. I clutched at Heero, pulling him tighter against me, losing all control as I felt release wash through me, mind blowing in its intensity. The feeling so extreme that I couldn't even form words, couldn't begin to concentrate.
A shimmering sound filled my ears, the sound of the crystal singing to itself as I spilled into Heero's mouth. Like the tinkling of a million bells, the whisper of space itself as it travels through time for an eternity. Each swallow around me sent a quiver through my body, my euphoria so high I thought I would pass out from it. Slowly, I began to come down from it, easing my fingers from their grasp, leaning forward to wrap my arms around Heero's shoulders, nestling my face against his neck.
I chuckled, whispering into his ear. "Am I clean now?"
"Yeah, I think I got all the 'dirt' off." He said with a laugh, pulling me down into the water again to sit on his lap. My hands remained curled around his neck, my ear pressed against his heart, listening to the steadying thumping of it inside his chest. I felt sleepy, lethargic with the passing of so much energy.
A cough from one of the doorways jerked both of us upright to stare at the intrusion. "Sorry to interrupt what looks to be post-coital snuggling," Khushrenada said with a grin that was halfway on its way to becoming a leer. "But, I'm afraid we've got some trouble."
"What?" I asked, already climbing out of the bathing pool and searching for something to dry off with. The Raskuda handed me a towel, smiling at me and letting his eyes roam over my body.
"Tell me, does the crystal always glow when you get turned on?" He asked curiously, staring at the wetwiring in my hands, which was still glowing gently.
"Yes, now what's the trouble?" I said with annoyance, wrapping the towel around my waist and glaring at him.
"Oh nothing much, except that apparently half the systems universal finders are after us."
"What!?" Heero yelled, moving so fast he nearly blurred. In seconds, his hands were wrapped around the Raskuda's throat, their faces inches apart. "What do you mean?"
"If you... let go of my throat I might be able to tell you... " He rubbed his neck as Heero released him, rolling his eyes upwards. "Fliogans, yeesh."
"Will you just tell us already!?" I shouted, stepping on one of his feet and grinding my heel into it.
"Ouch! Ok, all right, enough with the violence. There's about 300 finders out there right now, I don't know how they tracked you down, but they're there. I just thought you should know." He smiled suddenly, leaning down to run a hand along his foot and wincing. "That hurt."
We glared at him, waiting.
"Don't worry your wonderful heads over it, this ship can outrun them in a nanosecond."
"How?" Heero and I asked at the same time.
"Why my dear men, we have the best of everything on our ship." He said with another grin, turning his back and sauntering towards the door. "Haven't you ever heard of the KhushrenadaPeacecrafto drive?"
"Ah well, you'll soon find, we're much more than mere pirates. Now get dressed my lovelies, and buckle yourselves down for a quick jaunt through stars." And with that, the door slid shut on his cackling.
Transpod: A dimensional traveling device. The transpod will transport human mass within any area that contains another transpod. The time taken for each journey will always be exactly 10 nanoseconds, as time is folded as well as matter to create no ripple within the dimensions.
Slosta: A drink created from organic matter grown on Jilad, the Slosta is filled with nutrients that heighten awareness and energize.
CR chips: Two microchips implanted behind the ears, the connectors that allow a direct linkage to the VR modules.
Shinalp: A form of cursing, Shinalp is somewhat akin to saying "shit" or "ah shit"
Kajacrap: The Kaja is a life form located on the planet Neskin, a large beast known to produce huge amounts of feces. The phrase kajacrap is akin to saying "Bullshit"
Fliogan Warriors: The Fliogan is a race that attaches metallic wings to their young while they are still being formed within the incubators. The wings are partially organic, fusing with the young so as to become part of their bodies. This warrior race is known to be extremely high tech, and very vicious, most normal humans will not go near them, as they are known to kill without reason. Very little is known of the Fliogan or their ways.
Feed Tubes: Connectors that feed information and nutrients to any life form connected to any long-term device.
Lavablue 6: The planet on which the society of Fliogan reside at this time.
Levels: Technological knowledge is rated by level; most societies only have an average of 30 levels. The common level of most humans is 5, techmaster levels tend to be higher and in the upper ranges.
Steelshift: 1 of over a million different charted elements, Steelshift is partially organic, allowing it to be integrated with human DNA, testing is still in experimental stages, most distinguished users of this element are the Fliogan.
Slipshot Diskwings: A style of wing known to be common among the Fliogan, Slipshot defines the integration of movable parts, Diskwing is the style of the small circular patterns of metal that form the wings of Fliogan.
Contract: A contract is a more binding way to say, "Promise or swear?"
Optilenses: Cyber optic lenses, which can be used during a VR program only.
Creos: The original form of the name Christ has changed with the passage of time, modern form of the word when used as a curse is Creos.
Orstras: A plant matter grown in dark caves on the planet of Trinition, considered a delicacy on most planets, the plant is dark purple with small white bells that can be plucked and cooked. The taste is said to be sweet and delicate.
Realtime Call: The difference between a realtime call and a regular call is in the distance, all realtime calls infer off planet residence of the caller, communications run at high speeds, face to face talking is still difficult between planets.
What is your task: This is the way most people will ask what your job is, what career you're in.
Crèche Technician: Most people are born to the incubators and raised in crèches, the technicians help care for the many children being raised in such places.
Grower: The still forming body of a child within the incubator, a delicate time that must be carefully overseen to prevent accidents. A grower is usually designated as a child in a womb-like state. Between –1 to –9 months, or the time a child would be inside of a mother's body.
Youlin: I manmade mammalian life form, these animals are specifically created to improve the technology behind cloning. Most tests are performed with a small VR module; with which the creatures are filled with the only knowledge they know, as the Youlin is created with a blank slate for a mind.
A Set: A group of Growers that have reached maturity.
Trance state: Every few months of a citizen's life is recorded during REM cycles, the consciousness is stored within a neural processor called a memory chip. Occasionally when one wishes to know another, an exchange of such chips may occur.
Wetwiring: circuitry and modifications that can be installed within the human body without harming it.
The System: There are 3 levels of the system. The first is that which take cares of the minor systems such as basic maintenance, the second level controls techmaster training, medical facilities, and knowledge. The final level of the system controls all other functions between worlds, each detail is observed, and stored within it.
Klishana: A crystal found during an expedition of exploration, it is not only organic, but sentient as well.
Pinalr: A vegetable that can be eaten raw or cooked, it is said to be an acquired taste due to its strange fleshy texture and nutty flavor.
Guplit: A type of fruit grown on many planets, it is small and covered in tiny spikes which make it needful to be carefully eaten. It is said to taste rather sour, with a hint of sweetness.
Fermented Hisle Juice: A type of fruit also grown on many planets, it can be juiced and distilled to form a mild form of alcoholic beverage.
If you would like a definition for something not listed here just ask! ^_^