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Baby, Hit Me - snippet 4
“She stays.” It’s a definite order in her best take no prisoners tone as she tossed her flight bag on their bed.
She’s not even looking at him and he wondered again just how good her senses were, if she really had eyes in the back of her head, or if she simply knew him so very well.
“No way in hell.” It’s a knee jerk response in his best you don’t scare me missy voice as his bag joined hers on the bed.
“You agreed,” she said calmly, not bothering to look at him as she moved to snag a couple of fresh tee shirts.
"I agreed to be the good little PK tech boy who saved your life when your mission went south," he sulked, unhitching his belt and tightening his grip on Winona.
“Techs don’t carry pulse pistols.” She snagged some socks to join the tee shirts.
“Fine,” he snorted. “Give me one of your knives.”
She tossed him his own shirts and socks instead. “No.”
He shoved them savagely into his bag. “I will not be the bare assed naked new guy on the block,” he growled.
“Yes, you will,” she corrected him. Moving into the fresher, she grabbed their travel bags and was back in a microt, tossing one to him. “They’ll check.”
He caught it one handed, dropped it in the bag, rolled his shoulders and kinked his neck. “I don’t like this.”
“You said that before. Multiple times.”
“Just so you know.” He slid narrowed eyes toward her. “It’s kinda nice getting to say that somebody else’s plan sucks for a change.”
“That’s the happy little optimist I married.” She threw him a small smile as she tossed her hair, held out her hand.
A smile played at the corners of his lips as his fingers tapped happily on Winona.
“Oh, for frell’s sake,” she grumbled as her fingers snapped her palm, demanding the pistol.
He handed her over, watched her disappear with Aeryn’s other toys as she zipped her bag.
He chewed on his lip, brought his thumb up to run over it, looked at her through hooded eyes. “We’re in. You do your thing. We’re outta there. Right?”
“That’s the plan,” she promised.
He zipped his bag, turned to face her head on, eyes locked on hers. “You ready?”
“Ready.” She hefted her bag onto her shoulder.
“Let’s go say goodbye to D.”
She squeezed his hand in passing. He pulled his flight bag off the bed and followed her into the corridor.
Far flung stars, pinpricks of light on some distant horizon sparkle in the blackness surrounding them. Somewhere far behind them Moya waited while they hung motionless and still in the inky void.
He concentrated on the beating of his heart, the slow inhale and exhale of his breath, the spill of hair as black as the horizon in front of him.
There’s nothing in his head. No fire bell. No buzzing.
Nothing to tell him what’s going on. Nothing for him to feel.
She’d always waited better than him, and he’d never learned to appreciate the sound of silence as she did. He leaned forward in the cramped cockpit, rested his chin on her shoulder, felt the quiet tension seeping from her as her hands wrapped the armrests of her seat.
“He’ll be fine.”
“I know that.”
“We’ll be back before he really misses us.” His stomach knotted at the lie, at her shoulder’s sudden twitch under his chin.
“We will be back.”
“I know that, too.” She shifted slightly and slapped open a channel. “Pilot?”
“Are you and Moya certain about your location?”
“According to the data from your ship and our calculations, we should be a safe distance from the wormhole when it opens.”
“It should be soon. Just wait for it.”
He leaned forward again. “You make sure everybody stays safe, Pilot.”
“Yes, Commander. Moya and I will be here waiting when you return.”
“It’s here,” she breathed as the gaping maw of the wormhole bloomed in the forward portal.
She was moving before he even registered the fact that it was there, hands dancing over controls as the blue waves undulated before them.
He’s blind and deaf to their call now, but not immune to the twisted mix of excitement and fear that churned in his gut at the sight. His fingertips itched to be at the controls, but he’s unable to do anything except wait out the ride.
His hands grabbed the back of her seat and he pulled himself forward, willing himself to silence as she maneuvered closer to the swirling blue entrance.
He felt the pitch of the ship and the pull of the giant, felt her fighting the controls, correcting and recalibrating as her fingers flew and they drew closer to the horizon.
Suddenly they’re in and he’s back on the e-ticket ride, careening madly through rushing blue tunnels in the twisting, swirling tunnels. The ride was over almost before it’s begun and they’re spit back out into normal space.
Right in front of the command carrier.