“‘Go to Mars,’ they said. ‘It’ll be an adventure,’ they said,” grumbled the angry astronaut. “Jacqui, tell me again why I agreed to this?”
Jacqueline Raymons exited the rover, walked around back, and grabbed a box of tools. “You did it for the same reason we all did, Gray. You despised being on back on Earth, in that tiny apartment of yours that smelled like the rest of society. The people you knew, the family you don’t talk to? Your ex-wife?” Her tone became bitter, but if Grayson Maynard could see her face behind the visor he would see a dark smirk dance upon her lips.
“Funny, I was never married. Are you sure you aren’t remembering Your ex-wife?” Grayson chuckled to himself as he heard Jacqui’s teeth gnashing alongside a low growl. “Lighten up, Jacqs, that filthy streetwalker can’t bother you here!”
Everyone in the colony had heard about Jacqui and her very recent ex-wife, Lisa, while shipping out to the colony. It had been a quick engagement between them, and it was Lisa’s idea to get married. Jacqui was in love and thought Lisa was too. She recounted the details to the crew making sure they knew to never mention Lisa to her. It had turned out that Lisa was after the money, medical benefits, and time apart Jacqui’s position with NASA provided them both. She used the time Jacqui was away on missions to start private sessions with her “clients.” As a licensed psychologist, Jacqui hadn’t considered the possibility that her lover was sleeping around for money. She came home early from a short mission to surprise Lisa. The surprise was on her as she found her “loving” wife entwined with another woman and three men.
When Grayson referred to Lisa as a dirty hooker, Jacqui couldn’t help but laugh. “You hit the nail on the head there, Gray.” Their conversation drifted away for a few minutes while she cooled off from memories of her recent divorce. “So why did you decide to join this one-way trip,” she probed. “From what I’ve seen you didn’t need the money. You also had plenty to live for back on Earth. So why come to Mars?”
“I’m not entirely certain. I think part of it was the thrill of the adventure. Perhaps it was the mystery of what may be discovered.” Grayson was a well respected member of society. Having come from a family of many established talents, it was hard to figure out what Grayson was doing on Mars for the rest of the group. “I’ve always loved the idea of leaving the Earth behind. So many people expect so many things of me. Outside of the attention of numerous lovely ladies,” he said with a slight laugh, “the rest of those people I didn’t care to see. A few people know me here. That’s a nice feeling, but it also sucks because I’d like to not be doing this. Ugh, what are we doing here again?”
Jacqui finished checking the tools they needed for their current outing. “We were asked to take samples in this region. You should know this by now! We need to test soil composition, check for usable mineral deposits, search for water, and help start the terraforming process in this area.” Jacqui took her job seriously. She knew Grayson was a smart guy and admired some of his traits. The man was just being stubborn because they woke him up to join Jacqui for this mission.
“This is Exactly the adventure I had in mind when I signed up for this trip.” Grayson sighed heavily as he lumbered over to help Jacqui. He had already been on many of these types of trips over the two months they had been on the red planet. They had found very few sites that matched what they were looking for. “Didn’t we just find a probable expansion site last night? I know we did because I was a part of that team,” he protested.
“I didn’t choose you, Gray. That was Billy’s decision.” Bill Reddly has been the curator of the colony. His was the final voice on many matters that needed a decision. If he felt a decision had been wrongly made, he would petition the colony and lobby his experience against what had been voted for. Often enough his interventions are heeded. “You know how he is. I think he actually trusts you. I wouldn’t just spit on that, Gray. That could mean some good things for you in the future.”
Grayson picked up a hint of jealousy in Jacqui’s voice. He placed his hand on her shoulder, “If it means good things for me it will mean good things for you too, you know.” He took a very stoic stance, his hands on his chest as though he held invisible suspenders. “When I rise to power on this planet, you will be my second-in-command to carry out my justice!”
Jacqui laughed harder than she had for some time. She didn’t tell Grayson that she had requested to work with him as often as possible as she didn’t want to stroke his ego. Her laughter quickly faded as she saw a reflection off of Grayson’s visor. She turned to look at the object in the distance.
“Are you seeing this too?”
“I think it depends on if you see some strange lights over those mountains there,” Jacqui replied. “If so, then yeah. Yeah, I see it.”
“I wonder what it could b—” Grayson trailed off as within less than a second the strange lights in the far distance were not so far away. The hovering object was a few hundred feet away behind their rover. It was very circular, or at least appeared to be. It had no center but supported four quickly rotating lights, only one of which was red. “Jacqui, what do we do?”
“I don’t know, try not to startle it?”
“It’s not a goddamned bear back on Earth!” As Grayson shouted to Jacqui, the red rotating light blinked and got darker. “Or I can shut up and listen to you, that works too.” The light pulsed again, returning to it’s original brightness. “I think it likes you, Jacqui.”
All four lights blinked in a rhythmic pattern. “Why? Why would it like me?” As she asked her question, all for lights darted to the ground between them and their rover. A dull, spinning ring was left hovering in the sky above. The dust cleared around the spot where the lights landed, revealing pods not much bigger than their rover. The red pod opened first and out walked three very tall, slender figures. The blue pods opened revealing similar passengers. Each one stood at least a full head above both Jacqui and Grayson. The figures began to slowly walk toward them, lifting their hands into the air.
“Why are they doing that?”
“It could be a sign of peace,” Jacqui squeaked, hoping she was right. The figures stopped just ten feet away. The first being from the red pod grabbed an item off of it’s waist and threw it on the ground between them. The item burst and from it gushed forth a substance that enveloped the groups entirely. Within the bubble of liquid, the beings brought their own hands up to their heads. Both Grayson and Jacqui heard the distinct hiss of depressurization from the helmets as they watched the figures slowly remove them.
“Oh wow,” Grayson whistled as he caught a glimpse of the first being.
“Wow doesn’t cut it, Gray,” Jacqui confessed. The beings standing before them reminded Jacqui of the Amazons of old Earthen legend. Beautiful and tall tribes of warrior women who were said to be daughters of the gods. The Amazons vanished hundreds or thousands of years ago, but their legends inspired Jacqui to become the woman she was today.
“No, no… wow definitely doesn’t cut it, Jacqs. Now I don’t know if this is a dream. Please tell me I’m not dreaming. Please tell me I’m awake and beautiful alien women have just made first contact with us. Please help me not make an ass of myself..” Jacqui knew Grayson was in shock. She couldn’t blame him, she was just as shocked and intrigued. She felt like she had just met her heroes.
One of the beings slowly walked over to Grayson, an already decently tall guy, and made him appear like a child by comparison. She ran her gloved hands over the sides of his visor as if caressing his face. He watched a series of expressions dance across what appeared to be their commander’s face before an approving nod was given. Suddenly he felt arms draped around his shoulders and her head resting on his helmet. He heard a voice softly whispering to him.
“Everything is fine. I am Dahnie of the Nebtua crest. We are here as friends, and we hope you are as well. My people are a noble race. You both share an ancient bloodline of our ancestors. The royal blood of the Peryn crest flows through you both.” Her voice was soft, sensual. Grayson nearly fell listening to her speak. “I give myself to the human descendant of the Royal Crest of Peryn so that I may act as an ambassador for my kind.”
“Your blood relation,” she paused, looking on as their commander embraced Jacqui in an emotional moment. The beings slowly removed both Jacqui and Grayson’s helmets within the liquid bubble. To both of their surprise it was breathable air. Grayson looked back and could see tears in the tall woman’s eyes. “Your blood relation will go with the last descendant of the Peryn crest, Visr Aarale Perynsa. Her blood is more pure and therefore more important for their joining. Soon our families will be whole again!”
Jacqui looked back at Grayson having been told the same. She knew there had been something about Gray she felt connected to, and now she knew. Tears filled her eyes as her emotions collided. The Visr leaned down to whisper a few words into Jacqui’s ear. Jacqui’s complexion turned a bright shade of red right before Aarale placed both hands on her face, connecting their lips in a passionate embrace. Her eyes spoke of her ecstasy and then Jacqui’s body quivered. Aarale gave Dahnie one last longing gaze before returning to their pods and leaving.
As quick as the encounter had begun, it had ended. There he was, Grayson Maynard of the Royal Peryn crest, alone with Dahnie while Jacqui was off with Aarale and the rest of the group. “What are they going to do with Jacqui,” he couldn’t help but ask.
“Reintroduce the royal highness, educate her on our culture, reinstate her as head of the royal crest, and then further the bloodline,” Dahnie replied casually.
“Further the bloodline… you mean, they’re going to breed her?!”
“No! My people can produce offspring regardless of which anatomical orientation one belongs to.” Dahnie started to put her helmet back on, preparing to help Grayson finish what he and Jacqui had set out to do. “She will most likely sire many children, in much the same way we shall I expect. Unless you are dissatisfied with our arrangement?”
Dahnie smiled coyly at Grayson before leaning closer and whispering a few words to him. A few words that turned his face bright red and made his knees weak. She put her helmet back on and started to walk away leaving Grayson fumbling for his helmet. “So, uhh, when do we start?”
© T.A. Rindler “Noble Blood” 2015
© T.A. Rindler “Noble Blood” Short Stack Story Time 2015