Monday, March 16, 2015
May 7, early
Happy birthday to me! Betra started my day off just right by giving me breakfast in bed. I wondered why he was so intent on finding out about blueberry pancakes and bacon the other day. The ship’s kitchen didn’t do a half bad job of approximating my favorite breakfast either. The berries, bought from the Xniktix station, are from one of Adraf’s agricultural colonies. They look similar but are more tart than blueberries. The flour the kitchen had made the pancakes from is a bit denser than what we had back on Earth. The syrup was super thick. Even though it was a little different, my special meal was delicious. Best of all, the bacon was the real deal.
Betra had never had bacon before. I take it he approves; he crunched his way through an entire pig’s worth. Okay, maybe not that much, but he ate a lot.
I still haven’t gotten him to admit how wonderful coffee is. There may be no hope for that man.
“What do you have planned for today?” he garbled through a mouthful of his new favorite food.
“I’ve decided to ask Dr. Tep if I’m having a girl or a boy,” I said.
Betra’s eyebrows rose at that. “What happened to wanting it to be a surprise? Just last week, you said you wanted to wait until it was born.”
I waved my hands. “I know. The truth is, I can’t stand not knowing after all. I’m tired of saying ‘he or she’ every time I mention the kid. And I refuse to call him or her ‘it’. Besides, I want to know what to raid the ship’s stores for. The way Candy and a few of the other women are carrying on, I may not be the only one showing up on Kalquor with an extra resident. I want first dibs on the baby goodies.”
Betra nodded. He lifted my nightie up to plant a bacon-greasy kiss on my stomach. Not caring about my yells, he delivered yet more oily kisses to my decidedly round stomach. At 23 weeks, I’m getting big. Betra still thinks it’s wonderful, the big loon.
My whining finally convinced him to leave off. A cleansing wipe got rid of the grease. I looked into my empty coffee cup and sighed.
“You had two cups, and Dr. Tep wasn’t enthralled with me letting you have that much at once,” Betra warned. “You’ve still got an entire carafe of decaffeinated, if you must drink that stuff.”
I made a face at the decaf, but poured myself a cup anyway. “Decaf is as meaningless as dry humping. It’s not the real thing.”
Betra laughed and shook his head. “Silly girl. My present for you should be ready this afternoon. I’ll stop by and give it to you once it’s been delivered to me. You can tell me if I’m getting a niece or nephew.”
My smile felt a little tight. I hate being reminded that Betra, a career fleet officer, won’t be around for much of my child’s life once we get to Kalquor. The Imdiko will be an honorary but often absent family member.
I’ve already left behind too many men who part of me believes should be surrounding me and my little one. I’ll leave behind two more; Betra and my other current lover Oses. It hurts when I think about it too much.
I did my best to distract myself from the ready pain. “Another present? Like an extra morning cup of real coffee and a special breakfast aren’t enough? Not to mention naked Imdiko.” I openly leered at my big, stunning bedmate.
Betra is as close to cute as a Kalquorian man can get. With his open face and charming smile, one would never suspect how dominating he tends to be in bed ... until you find yourself looking up at six-and-a-half feet of muscular male and he’s holding you down while forcing one orgasm after another on you. As he did to me last night. Yow.
He leered back, his purple cat-slitted eyes drinking in the filmy nightie I’d pulled on this morning. Those eyes seemed to glow in his brown face. “I’m glad you think I’m a gift. But you’ve seen me naked plenty of times, and breakfast is hardly a proper present. Therefore, I had to get you something special.”
“Aw, Betra.” I pushed my platter out of the way so I could fling my arms around his neck and give him a kiss. “You are so good to me.”
That sweet face warmed at my appreciation. Love showed in his gaze. The idiot has fallen in love with me despite knowing we will go our separate ways in a few months. As for me ... I admit it’s been a hell of a fight to keep Betra – and Oses, for that matter – firmly in the beloved friend category. I can’t not love the two men, so I try to make sure it’s not happily-ever-after love.
They don’t make it easy. Both have put their lives on the line for me in the past. Their lives and, in Oses’ case, sanity.
This birthday was making me ruminate way too much on the temporary lovers in my life. I had to get moving so my mind would shut up. I took the one untouched slice of bacon left on my plate and waved it in front of Betra’s face. He gobbled it up, making happy noises usually reserved for sex. I giggled.
“Okay, big man, you have to get to your office and I have to go see the doctor.” I stood up and stretched with a contented yawn. “Thank you for the wonderful breakfast. I’m tempted to go back to bed just so this day remains perfect.”
Betra also stood, stacking our trays and dishes neatly to put in the kitchen-return unit. “If it was anyone but you, I’d ask what could possibly happen to a woman well guarded by three destroyers and hundreds of warriors on a space transport that’s been set up for her every comfort.” He grinned. “But you are Shalia Monroe, so such a question begs for trouble.”
I laughed ruefully. “You know me well, my friend. You know me well.”