Sibilius was excited. The ship was arriving from Earth after once again filling its belly full of dirt, plants, water, grain and farm animals. It had been orbiting out toward Mars for the last seven months.
Thousands of years ago, a disaster had occurred disabling their ship so that it was no longer able to move between stars. The heavy elements necessary to restore their star drive were not available in this solar system. Trapped with the local life forms, their continued existence depended entirely on the whims of an unstable dwarf star and whatever preparations they could make for its inevitable demise.
“We are going to visit our new home,” Sibilius announced happily to Béla as he entered the lab.
He seemed to find it perfectly natural that she lived here in his laboratory. After all, this was where she’d been born. Her siblings in their Martian Drone bodies had insisted on personal housing, but Béla was perfectly comfortable sitting around naked in his lab all day. She was almost constantly mind-linked with the Praetor and she was learning a lot from it.
At night, or rather, during the off-duty period when most of the Deimosians rested, she would go out and fly. There was always a group of admirers there to gawk at her, but she didn’t mind. When she radiated love to them, they reinforced it and sent it back to her. They didn’t seem to be offended by her nakedness at all, probably because they weren’t the same species. Also, some of the locals seemed to think of her as a pet rather than an intelligent being; but they loved her just the same.
After her evening flying practice, she would quickly fall asleep in the lab and go dream-walk with Jake. At least she did when their sleep times coincided. And she made sure they did as often as she could manage it, sometimes by simply taking a nap in the middle of the day and leaving her body lying on the floor for Sibilius and his assistants to step over her like a pet dog.
“Am I going with you?” Béla asked, completely ready to go explore someplace new.
Sibilius looked lovingly at his daughter. “Of course you’re coming with me! Do you think I’d leave you behind, Child? But, there are a few rules…
“On the ship, you will have to wear clothes,” he told her. “You can’t go around disrupting crew members who are working by ‘flashing’ them. You could cause an accident. You don’t want accidents in space.”
He had picked up the term ‘flashing’ from her, actually, when she’d used it during a heated discussion about her casual lack of attire.
“But I don’t even look like them! How can flashing a member of a different species be disruptive? It would be like dressing your pet monkey or something!”
“That’s exactly right, Child!” he had replied, sternly. “And many of my people view you as a sort of… exotic animal! An intelligent one that can learn interesting tricks to keep them entertained!
“That’s nonsense! They treat me like a princess! They even call me Prince…
“Oh my God!” Béla exclaimed, suddenly subdued as she realized…
‘Princess’ is also a dog’s name…
The great ship left Deimos six weeks later after replacing the tired crew and restocking supplies for the journey to Jupiter. It carried, in addition to Béla and her father, about twenty percent of the remaining population of Deimos. That group also included Béla’s siblings, in their Martian Drone bodies and her father’s projects as they matured into fully grown hybrids for her siblings to inhabit.
It would take almost three years to orbit out to Jupiter. The reason for that, her father explained when she asked him, was they had a finite amount of fuel left, and it had to last several more centuries, as the technology no longer existed for them to make more. For most of their motion, they depended on the local star’s gravitational pull to orbit them to their destination. The return trip would be noticeably faster, dropping back down to the inner planets.
Béla had believed that the ship would be cramped because of all the people coming on this journey, but this thing was truly huge and she found vast spaces where nobody went. There, she could explore in private and practice her flying.
Using her wings in free fall was a completely different exercise than pushing against a gravitational pull. This was like flying in the middle of Deimos, in the invisible center of its weak gravity field. It was also a lot different than the new way of balancing she’d had to learn in order to fly in a straight line along an inverted surface.
Plus, on Deimos, it was easy to fall into an artificial gravity field, and dangerous. She’d had to learn some fancy, hot maneuvers to compensate for the changes in gravity of rapidly spinning Deimos in order to keep from slamming against a structure that, a moment before, had been off in another direction and not in what appeared to be her flight path.
Sibilius was checking his projects when Béla entered his makeshift lab aboard the giant ship. As usual, she was naked. She was also lonely and depressed.
“You were gone six days, this time,” her father admonished her. He looked at her. He could see her ribs under her skin. “You’re not taking care of yourself like you should. You’re neglecting your body and spending too much time outside of it. You’re making it sick, Child.”
Searching through his cooling system, Béla found a packet of meat her father had been holding for her.
“I don’t like space,” she said sullenly. “I can’t fly here.”
She sat down on a table and tore a piece of raw meat off with her teeth. She actually was malnourished. She could tell that by the way her mouth absorbed the congealed blood and fat in the raw meat as she chewed. She wished there were some way to heat the meat up.
“How’re your bodies coming?” she asked, trying to be interested in at least something.
Jake was fighting her for some reason. For the last two nights, he’d had a girl with him. Béla had spent the time she’d wanted to dream-walk with Jake exploring Albuquerque, instead. Two thugs had beaten and raped a young woman and Béla hadn’t been able to stop it because she wasn’t really there. As the young woman lay on the ground, afterward, she had looked directly at Béla and begged her, ‘Please help me…’ Startled, Béla had leaped back into her body on the great ship.
“The projects are coming along fine. There is less damage to the skin because of the light gravity here,” her father said, “and we’re actually ahead of schedule for their preparation. The first one should be ready in a few more days.”
'Really? That soon? Can I teach her how to fly?' Béla radiated her thoughts excitedly.
'No, not right away,' her father mentally responded. 'She has to learn to walk, first, like you did. But, it will probably take her longer. Not many of your sisters had your drive.'
“Here is something you might appreciate,” Sibilius said, switching back to verbal as he changed the subject.
He held up a coil of thin wire with a harness on one end. The harness was designed with a collar around the neck and a long strap to go down the back, between the legs and back up to the neck. It fastened at the front and the back of the collar. As Béla looked at it, her father sent her an image of how to use it.
Strapping one end around a supporting girder, she floated into the air, wearing the harness, backing away until she reached the maximum length of the wire. Then, forming her wings, she beat against the air as vigorously as she wanted to, with no danger of slamming into anything. The perfect form of exercise to keep her body in shape.
Béla happily sent her father an image of her kissing his cheek. Although he was right there, she didn’t actually kiss him because she could feel his aversion to raw meat, and, right now, she was pretty much covered with it.
Popping the last bite into her face, she hopped down from her table and headed toward the communal baths. Mostly because of her eating habits, her father had ordered the construction of a small, personal shower for her to rinse off in before she joined other members of the ship in the common baths. Only a few crewmembers considered her a step lower on the evolutionary scale, but almost everyone mentioned that they didn’t care for her washing in their bath water.
Béla found the shower great for washing her hair. The tubular enclosure surrounding her shower also had handholds on the sides, as it was cannibalized from a passageway on a part of the ship that was not being used. While she was showering, she could grab the handholds and do a slow handstand in the low gravity, availing every part of her body to the spray.
After not fucking Jake for two days, she stayed in the shower a long time holding herself upside down until she lost her grip, crashing to the floor as she came.
Despite the fact that she had fond memories of being fucked, fisted, sodomized, shot and stabbed, the body she now wore had not experienced any of those things and was, in fact, completely virginal in every aspect. The nervous system of her body and the nervous system of her astral form didn’t respond the same way. That made her feel off-balance and itchy most of the time.
She knew that once her present body got laid a few times and got used to sex, she wouldn’t feel so anxious. But, right now, she was the only sexual creature on the entire ship that stood on two legs, and she wasn't interested in horses.
The surviving members of her father’s race were all dormant, sexually. According to the Praetor, the local sun’s radiation had destroyed their ability to reproduce before they had even realized there was a problem. In addition, no humans had been collected on their last trip to earth as no one had stumbled onto their alien activities this time.
She stepped out of the shower and watched the cut on her arm heal. She’d cut herself on the sharp edge of a panel a moment before when she’d experienced her body's first orgasm and lost her balance. In her mind, she could hear some of the Martian Drones (no, her sisters) in the communal bath, complaining about the very thing she had just been thinking about. Only, for them, it was the fact that their drone bodies didn’t even *have* sexual organs.
She decided to go back to father’s lab and get the harness he had given her. Then she was going to go down into the cargo hold, strap herself in, and beat herself into a fucking frenzy.
The wire and harness contraption worked pretty well if she made sure not to push any air on the upward stroke. She already knew how to do that, from learning to fly back on heavy gravity Earth. She worked herself into a good shine in a very short time.
She also discovered that the strap running between her legs stimulated her clitoris quite nicely. By the time she quit, she'd managed to give her virginal body four more orgasms. She’d also sweated off almost two liters of moisture and was feeling dizzy and disoriented. Every muscle in her body burned. She felt great!
Béla dropped her body down onto the cold, metal floor without bothering to cool down and went to see Jake. He was alone. He was awake. She couldn’t get through to him. He had magnetic things strapped to his ears.
'People are so stupid, sometimes!' Béla thought to herself, frustrated again.
Before they started inventing things, people had a sense of ‘others’ about them. They could tell if a friend, husband, or wife was upset or hurt. There was a sensitivity there that began to disappear when people started getting obsessed with ‘things’. The smarter people got about things, the dumber they got about people.
The simple fact that she could communicate with people in her 'dream state' indicated that the humans had the same mental potential to do what she could do. But they surrounded themselves with electronic devices that radiated on the same frequencies as thought, flooding their psychic senses with useless noise, then wondered why they couldn’t get along with each other.
'Finally! He’s asleep!' Béla thought excitedly.
She mentally suggested that he take off that uncomfortable headset. Jake turned over and the headset slipped off his head. Then Béla bounced onto the bed, cheerfully waking him up.
‘Miss me?’ she asked happily. Without waiting for an answer, she pulled him into a sitting position. ‘Come on! I want to show you something!’
Béla pulled him up out of his bed and into the image of her ship. He floated in mid air, looking around, dumbfounded. ‘What is all this stuff?’
‘These are supplies from Earth,’ she told him. ‘We’re taking them to our new home.’
‘Where are we?’ he inquired, still sounding confused. ‘I think I’ve been here before…’
‘You have. I brought you here last week,’ Béla replied. ‘We made love just floating in the air. But there are a lot of places on the ship you haven’t seen yet. Let me show you!’
She created an image of the communal baths around them. She stepped down into the warm water, then realized Jake had arrived dressed! She stepped back out and began unbuttoning his shirt.
‘You can’t take a bath with your clothes on,’ she laughed.
Béla opened his shirt and began rubbing her hands on his chest. ‘I miss you, you know?’ she said quietly as she caressed him.
She began kissing his collarbone, working her way up his neck. Jake pulled her to him and kissed her passionately. Béla moaned in pure pleasure. But with his arms wrapped around her like that, she wasn’t able to get his belt buckle to work. Finally, she just vanished his pants completely out of her image. Then she vanished the rest of his clothing.
‘Much better!’ she thought as she ran her hands over his bare skin.
She led him down into the bath, stepping carefully on the slippery marble. It wasn’t marble on the ship, but in her image of the ship, she made it marble. There wasn’t anyone around to interrupt, either.
Warm water cascaded over an artificial waterfall at one end of the bath. Béla stepped underneath it and looked up, allowing the water to cascade erotically over her face and breasts and down her body. The weak gravity let the water splash over a much greater distance in a dream-like fashion.
Jake joined her a few seconds later and the water poured over them both as they kissed and caressed each other. Béla wished she could spend the rest of her life like this. Jake began fondling her breasts, making her nipples hard. Behind the falls, Béla created a marble bench, just large enough for the two of them.
Jake, spotting the bench, took the initiative this time. He pulled Béla back behind the waterfall and sat her down on the bench, then knelt down in front of her, kissing and licking her breasts. He began caressing the insides of her thighs while he kissed and licked his way down the front of her slippery, wet body.
Béla spread her legs, making it easy for him to get his head down there. In the next moment, she felt his tongue separating the folds of her labia and licking into the edges of her cunt. He inserted a couple of fingers into her and began licking and sucking on her clitoris. As she came, she lost her hold on the image and on Jake. Everything faded away.
Béla woke up. Opening her eyes, she found herself naked, floating in the cargo bay, tethered to a support structure by a long, thin wire. She felt gaunt and exhausted. As she moved, her wings, which had been dangling out on either side of her, became arms again.
She slowly and painfully pulled herself down, coiling the wire around her arm as she did so. When she reached the end of the wire, she unfastened it and secured the end around the coil, holding it in place. Then she found a catch on the wall and secured her harness and wire to it.
She pulled herself through the cargo bay door and into a section that had a gravity field in it. Finding a carton that was padded with canvass, Béla climbed up on it, curled up and went to sleep. It occurred to her as she drifted off, that, while they were making love, Jake hadn’t said a single word to her.