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I'm gonna do it!

I have been wanting kazbaby to write a sequel to To Serve and she has let me try. I am slightly frightened to do this, so I'm going to take it slowly. cathy1967 said I should write to get over this fear--so here goes nothing.



John Crichton, lost Human, sat in front of the adobe-like (what else could he call it) hut he and Aeryn called home. Tall green growths like weird Cyprus trees surround the house. Blue sky reflects the three moons of Kouri in the bright cloudless sky. He has removed his shirt in the balmy summer weather. A breeze is blowing off the ocean crashing on the stony beach 50 motres in front of him. He’s not looking at any of the beauty because he is staring at his lover as she walks the beach. He lifts his pen to his lips and chews it while trying to decide how to capture her lines on the paper on his lap.

Smiling, he begins to sketch. His thoughts are peaceful and his demeanor calm. Aeryn sighed and smiled as she looked back at his seated figure chewing on his thumb absentmindedly as his hand moves on the paper. “He is finally coming back to his old self. Yesterday was wonderful. Those arns spent working on the TreNe; John has got it again (as he likes to say),” Aeryn mussed. “I think we have finally succeeded.”

Lost in her thoughts, she had failed to notice the sound of a flitter driving up the long pathway leading up to their house. Cursing under her breath, “John!” she cries. The sound of her voice is blown into nothing by the crashing of the ocean’s waves.
As the Kouri couple exits their flitter and walks up to the hut, they wave at Aeryn and John. Suddenly, John falls of his chair. His face is white with surprise and anger. His eyes are blank as his fists clench in frustration. He no longer hears the ocean, the breezes, or his beloved’s voice. His world is dark, numb, and silent once again.

Matuba and Palano stare in shock at the man lying in the sand in front of the house. He is mouthing a scream, but no sound comes from his lips as he rolls over and tries to lift himself off the ground. “Hola, Betina! I see that your mate is no better. We are sorry we scared him. We just came up to bring you these fresh freshlick.”

“Frell! I can’t get a break, can I? God, I hate this. The dark, the nothingness. Aeryn says this planet is almost uninhabited. Murphy strikes! The bread always lands butter-side down. This can’t be happening again. Gotta get a grip on myself. Gotta find my strong place. Gotta be strong for Aeryn. That’s what she says to do. I can do this. I can do this. Put one numb hand down on the nothingness; then the other. Push up. That’s it. I think I’m sitting up. The hard thing against my back, that’s the chair. Pull up. There, rest now. You did it.”

Aeryn ran up the path from the beach to greet her guests and rescue John. “Frell, it has been so long since we’ve seen people, I forgot. Where is my training? Too much peace.” Rapid thoughts run through her head as she reaches John’s position. She sees the sweat on his brow as he pushes up from his prone position. His forehead is creased with effort as he reaches back and lifts himself back on to his chair. She gently brushes her hand along his cheek, letting him know she is nearby. It is all she can do until the Kourians leave.

“Hello, Matuba. Hello, Palano. I haven’t seen you in a long time. Thank you for your concern. No, my mate is no better, although he does have his good days. I appreciate your gift. We definitely can use this. Come inside, I’ll give you something cool to drink. I know your long trip has been a dusty one.” Aeryn quickly lead her guests indoors, away from John, knowing he would recover in their absence.

John’s world slowly came back into focus. He blinked at the sudden return of light and sound. He brushed his hand along his brow and picked up his shirt and wiped it over his chest and face to relieve himself of his discomfort. He pushed himself off the chair and began to run. His breath panted keeping time with his anger as he jogged along the empty beach. “Frell Scorpius. Frell Peacekeepers. Frell Ancients. Frell the world!” John’s fists clenched tightly as his legs pumped out the motres. “We can’t get a break. I kill Scorpy then find that only he can unlock the frelling chip. We travel to this god-forsaken planet away from Moya, and still he follows me with his technology. Why can’t they just let us be?” John’s gate is even and steady as he pounds out his frustrations down the sandy beach.

Matuba glanced at the window, curious as to what is happening to the Sebecean male, but sees no one. She elbowing Palano sharply in his ribs, she said “Where is your mate? He is no longer sitting on the chair. Does he do this often? …go wandering off? It must be like having a small child. I don’t know whether I could stand the constant worrying about whether he was getting into trouble.”

Palano blushed and stepped closely up to his mate, and speaking in soto voice, said to her “Hush, Matuba. Must you expose your tactlessness in public?”

Aeryn looked up sharply from her drink preparations, thinking fast. “Yes, I should put a bell on him so that when he wanders off I can hear it. He hasn’t always been deaf, blind, and dumb. I still can’t get used to this situation. I’m so sorry, but I have to go after him and bring him back home. Can you see yourselves out? Thank you so much for the seafood. We really appreciate it.” Aeryn spoke the last words as she hurried out the door to make sure that John did not suddenly reappear before the Kourians had left. She sighed in relief at his absence, but also shrugged back her worry about his state of mind and whether this new episode of discomfort would set him back a step in his journey back to normality.

Aeryn waited behind the hut until her guests had left. She then came around and sat in the chair where John had sat only a short time before. She absent-mindedly picked up his book and slowly turned the pages. Every page was covered in drawings of her, Chiana, D’Argo, Zaahn, Rygel, Moya, and Pilot. The detail was amazing considering that John hadn’t “seen” his friends in over two cycles. She shook her head in sorrow at his losses and pain. She also felt sad for the loss of her own life as a Peacekeeper. A life where she simply had to follow orders and not think, or lie, or help another person recover from torture and its emotional and physical tolls. She remained sitting staring out to the ocean lost in thoughts of loss.

Arns later, John entered the hut without acknowledging her presence on the chair just outside the door. Throwing his now extremely soiled shirt on to the pile of other dirty clothing, slung his body forcefully on to one of the hammocks hanging from the ceiling, setting it spinning madly. “I was good. I was really good. I was following the rules. I was.” He kept repeating to himself.

Aeryn overheard this litany with a sinking heart as she entered the hut right behind him. She stood at the doorway, arms on her hips and asked quietly, “Where have you been? I have been worried about you.” John shrugged his shoulders from his position on the hammock and continued his mumbling chant. “John, look at me! You know that these periods of nothingness have nothing to do with your behavior and everything to do with that frelling chip that still lies buried in your head. This is not your fault. We just have to be more alert so that when strangers come you can go into hiding. We will find a solution to your problem. I promise you. Have I ever broken a promise?”

John shook his head as if to clear it and pushed himself carefully off the hammock. He walked carefully over to Aeryn and wrapped his arms around her. Laying his forehead against her brow, whispered “I know, Baby. I just get truly frustrated with this stupid situation. I forget that Scorpius is dead and can’t hurt me. I get so scared and angry.”

Aeryn and John lived simply since their arrival on Kouri a cycle earlier. Aeryn maintained discrete contacts with off worlders in the village that lay several motres away from their isolated home by the beach. She traveled as seldom as possible to the market in the village for food and other supplies and checked in to ensure that the solitude she sought for John and herself was unbroken by Peacekeepers or other strangers. During those trips to the village she left John alone at the house so as to avoid his loss of senses as much as possible. The Kourians didn’t seem to mind the strange couple who lived outside the village since they were quiet and caused no trouble. They did wonder how such a beautiful woman coped with the ruin of a man she lived with, but as it was none of their concern, they let them live in peace.

John put the Sebecean language flimsy he had been studying down on the table when he heard Aeryn’s arrival outside the hut. “Hola, Aeryn!” he called in Sebecean. “Do you need any help?”

“John, your pronunciation is frelled, but you are getting better and better at speaking. Yes, I would love help. Would you please carry in the bag of vegetables.” She replied back in the same language. “Your studying is paying off nicely.”
John grinned and said in Sebecean, “Yes, I will. I have been working hard on studying. This language is very confusing.” He then continued in English, “God, I missed you. I was lonely with just the ocean birds for company. I’m glad you’re back. Any news from the outside world?”

Aeryn’s good mood turned dark and she frowned. “Yes, I’m afraid so and it is not good. Let’s finish unpacking and I’ll fill you in on the details.”

Later, over cups of raslack, Aeryn filled John in on what she had learned. “Crais has joined up with a disruptor named Mele-on Grayza. They are actively hunting us and there is a price on our heads of over 50,000 Kretmas each for apprehension dead or alive. They want revenge for the death of Scorpius.” Aeryn looked down at her hands and continued quietly, “At this rate, with wanted buoys posted everywhere, we’ll never be able to leave safely and find a diagnostician with the electronics knowledge to remove that chip. I’m sorry John.”

John placed his hand on Aeryn’s hands and replied, “Aeryn, so long as we are alone here, we seem to be safe. We’ll find a way to fix this thing. I trust you. I’m feeling more alive and less scared every day, thanks to you. We’ll just have to take the time and figure out a plan. They can’t track us here to this backward, piss-poor planet. We’ll have the time to research a safe doctor and some way to clear our names. We just have to find an honest Peacekeeper, an oxymoron, I know; but there might be one somewhere. Come to bed now and I know a new trick that can get you mind off Crais and this Grayza person.” He took her hand and led her to the loft where they slept, all though of bounty hunters and wanted beacons soon fled from their minds.

Comments

Very decent piece. Do write more.
Thanks, I'm trying.
This is funny! I think I've read this before. Or have I? I can totally not remember anything right now. But I love it. More, please? :D You rock, girl.