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    Cia
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

Ancalagon - 78. Chapter 78

“This is not the path you were expected to take.” Mother folded her hands tight. She moved toward a set of benches along the path. I followed in her wake, much like my father and I had always done. Father didn’t really seem bothered by it; he was often more involved in his research and lab work. Mother did the bulk of their networking, but she banked on the name.

Probably why she resented his name being bandied about by those in charge. He’d been named for his great-grandfather who’d famously saved an entire continent after he came up with a cure from a plant that solved a bacteria that had been invading the eyes of the colonists settling in the northern half of the planet’s habitable land. She also disliked that biology ran in father’s side of the family too, but I’d never been into aliens.

Before Garjah, that is.

I was very into him.

Putting up with Sonez’s crap until I could land a new assignment, or get so sick of it I let him fuck me just to escape him? Nope.

Garjah came to stand behind the bench I sat on. It was less of a protective stance and more of an anti-destructive one; the outdoor set looked like it would break under his weight. I was careful how I moved on it myself. He placed his lower hands on my shoulders, and I leaned back against him.

“Expected or not, I’m happy. I am doing important work. I won’t apologize for unintended consequences I couldn’t have foreseen.” She’d just have to get over it.

“Government officials do not like it when entire planets are taken away from them,” Mother hissed.

“I cannot take away what they never had. Galactic policy is what dictates how to proceed when they encounter a species with a prior claim.”

“But you are the one who is bringing that race to them. Before, they were hidden. If not for you, they might still be, and the planet’s rich resources might be available.

“They would not,” Garjah rumbled. “We would have responded, had teams come to rape the planet.”

Mother was not impressed with that answer, but it did seem to make my father happy. He was a strong conservationist and often fought to the Galactic Council to preserve animals and rare habitat finds.

“When will you resume your studies?” Father asked. “Will you be writing a paper on your four-legged red friend?” He indicated Bouncer. “What is he again?”

Garjah’s grip tightened on my shoulders, and Bouncer rumbled, leaning against my legs. I winced and stroked them both, easing the hold Garjah had on me incrementally and quieting the rumbling vibrating through Bouncer’s deep chest. “Go play while you can,” I told him. I waved my hand at the strips of grass. “Run.”

The fact that he listened and actually went only proved the point I was about to make. “One, Bouncer is no longer a good comparison to any cerops in the wild so no, I didn’t plan to write a paper about him. And two, I won’t be returning to Sonez’s ship.”

“You have an obligation,” my mother gasped in offense. If she sat any straighter, her spine would snap.

“He’s my bonded. He will stay with me.” Garjah didn’t offer any justification and his tone said the conversation was over. I didn’t mind.

“The other reason you brought us here?” I asked. I knew they had more than to ask us about just my job.

“Bonding to an alien race has never precluded a scientist from being part of the Institute.” Dr. Vikrish had been silent up to this point, but he finally spoke up. If he hadn’t been watching us so closely, I might have forgotten he was there.

“Garjah has a lot of responsibility on his planet. It’s not something just anyone else could do.” I hedged my response, hoping he’d leave it at that and back down.

“We’d love to know more about your home planet, actually, if Essell will not return to his post,” Dr. Vikrish said. “He is an unofficial ambassador already, is he not? A trusted man who could help bridge the space between us.” He said it so reasonably, like that was the whole idea.

I could only imagine what they would really want to know. If they hadn’t grasped that my loyalty was to Garjah by now, they were the fools. I wasn’t about to make that obvious to them. At this point, I just wanted to get through this conversation. Making bland noises of agreement while Dr. Vikrish kept going on about discovering new things about each other and my mother glared down her nose at us bought us another ten minutes of Bouncer playing before he decided he was done.

“I’d like to take him back to feed him. He gets agitated when the food isn’t forthcoming.”

“We are staying at the guest quarters, the Aqnars said, so if you’d like to come see us tomorrow before the meeting.” I almost elbowed Garjah for that, but my mother shook her head.

“We will see you just before the meeting.”

Relief flooded me. I wanted to eat in the morning, and the thought of having to do it with my mother in tow was not a good idea. There was a restaurant I’d loved when I was at the Institute that I thought Garjah would enjoy. Maybe we could order in. I’d have to comm them on the way back to our quarters.

Garjah and I sat close in the shuttle on the way back to the Council building; his hands stroked my sides and stomach under the tunic.

As soon as Bouncer was fed again, we were going to bed. I didn’t care it was still light out, my system wasn’t on this time. I was tired from the long, tedious day. I wanted Garjah and the bed I’d promised myself.

Copyright © 2020 Cia; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
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