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 are you kitten me [18+], smutty sci-fi
abbey
 Posted: Oct 17 2015, 07:06 AM
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All that Leander wants from life—or lives, in his vernacular—is a little R&R. Rest and relaxation. A holiday. Hitting the proverbial snooze button.

That's what he says.

There are those who say the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and his pudding has been flung across kitchens in several galaxies. That what it proves is he is a different calibre of person. One whom, when unrelaxed, would rather sharpen his claws on other people's drapes, and collect their trophies to line his throat and shoulders, and, and pulverise planets and stars when things don't go his way, and don't forget lounging, lounging! in dens of iniquity. He has heard his share of talk, good and bad, true and untrue, and it has never particularly bothered him. If they're talking about him, good. The universe is big and vacuous enough that relevance is a good thing.

He isn't lounging long. As 'important' as Leander is, there is usually someone waiting to talk to him. Even eloping to Cimmerae's red moon, where the daylight hours are plentiful and hot and the night is a quick, sighing dream of coolness, he hasn't escaped it. If he turns his head just so, he can see out the window: the baked, shifting sands and the dragon-tail patterns made by the stifling breeze when it moves. The sun is a white ball of spite in the sky. The shadows are long and getting longer.

When he shuts his eyes, he's transported. Away, away from Lanquis, the catnip den. The smoke in his lungs fills him up with a feeling like weightlessness, though his bones feel twice as dense. The chaise longue sinks away, the tasselled cushions and throws become mounds of dirt and hilly grass. He's in a golden field in his mind, and there are swallows and sparrows flitting through his fingers, begging him to catch them and bite into their downy bodies. Dandelions tickle his nose.

He opens his eyes. The field disappears.

Chancellor Ferox is still talking. The haze of catnip smoke shrouding the room hasn't affected him. Where Leander's eyes are clouding over, Ferox sits bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, seeming to vibrate with a scarcely contained energy.

Ferox. Ridiculous name.

His tail sweeps behind him. His eyebrows are two angled points of anger above his eyes. "And that was just last week! Bells and collars. They were jingling them at us in the pavilion, and us smiling and sheathing our claws. You have to admonish them. If they're to learn any sensitivity at all, they have to stop thinking of us as common beasts. We aren't their— pets."

"Admonish, hmm," Leander agrees. He puffs on the end of the rope-pipe in his mouth and exhales a sweet-smelling cloud of smoke. "I'm not sure how much they like that."

"It won't be ill-received from you. You're a prince, of a sort."

"I am. Thank you for noticing," Leander agrees again. "Fascinating story." He says it without fascination. "It is better on Earth than it was a few years ago. Time heals all, Chancellor. I'll consider re-addressing the topic. Now our time is up, regrettably, and I have another audience."

Having forgotten who it is or what the time is on which day, doesn't change the facts.
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XANDER
 Posted: Oct 21 2015, 12:17 AM
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There is quiet in space. There is quiet like ancient men never knew, the quiet of total emptiness, of the vacuum, of death. In the vacuum, everything evaporates. It is dry and freezing and there is nothing in this particular expanse but this hollow metal beast, its engines idling, as it relaxes, for a moment.

Inside the monster's belly, in a cold room with bare metal walls, he carefully dips an eyedropper into a petri dish filled with saline; he holds out his arm. Across his forearm, the skin has parted and lies open, cut by a laser -- native defense system or pistol, he forgets. The charred, useless pieces of it have been cut away with fine scissors, where they lay across the floor like bits of burnt newspaper. In the silence and the darkness, there are no witnesses to look or tell what lays between that flayed arm.

With thumb and forefinger, he draws the skin together, the eyedropper poised between his index and middle fingers. A light bump of his chin on the plunger drips the saline onto the skin.

It will take time for the expensive blend of nanites and stem cells to knit him back together. But there is much time out here, in the dark. In the emptiness.

��

He shields his eyes from Cimmerae's sun with one hand, casting a shadow across the bridge of his nose, as his crew floats the shipment indoors. His three assistants work to control the hoverpallet and lower it from the truck, transporting as well as guarding. All three of them originate from different planets, and yet, they all look related: there is a threatening air to them, between the facial tattoos and scales and the assembly of crossed arms. Only one of them sweats in the heat. That one, a tall, canine-like creature covered in fine white hair, spits into the sand, and utters a curse in its native language.

"Mind yourself," drones the captain.

The hoverpallet is directed to the back of the establishment, where the crate is opened with the captain's thumbprint. The shipping container hisses as it hydraulically unfolds, revealing smaller crates inside. The aliens bring them inside by hand.

The catnip den is a luxurious place for luxuriating, but unfortunately for the captain and his crew, it appeals to one species in particular. The haze of the smoke and the sleepy smiles of the residents are mere numbers, boiling down into grams and cryptocurrencies. The captain looks from customer to customer, and considers. He agreed to a meeting today. He considers forgetting about it. So much of his business is done without ever meeting face to face, and it is often better to keep it that way.

But today he feels good about himself. He separates from his crew.

When Chancellor Ferox is dismissed, he must suffer the added humiliation of having the offensive species in question eavesdropping on him. The man behind him is human, a cool 6'4'', and armored from neck to toe in a flexible dark-grey body suit; he is examining imaginary dust on the tips of his fingers when Ferox turns. The pose is an almost perfect replication of Image 42 from Dr. Nicholas Barencroft's renowned "Body Language Visual Encyclopedia: Homo sapien". If Ferox has ever had the chance to scan it, or he has performed any studies of his adversaries, he will clearly understand that Captain Reese considers him a waste of time, and an insult to relaxation and quiet.

He steps around Ferox into the room. "Are you Leander?" And then Reese smiles, and there is much in what he doesn't say, and in the silent gleam of his gold eyes.

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abbey
 Posted: Oct 23 2015, 08:08 PM
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Ferox is small, even for a Miramiaow. The tips of his ears don't clear Reese's shoulders, and he is left looking at the much bigger man's chest. His reflection is blurred in the bodysuit. He hasn't studied anything by Barencroft, but he knows when he's being insulted. His lip curls. His teeth flash. The tabby-like stripes in his fur all seem to move of their own accord, as the hairs bristle.

"Your Grace," he hisses at Leander, with the 'C' pushed out between his teeth, becoming a sibiliant 'S'. He leaves with teeth bared.

One in three Miramiaow aren't affected by catnip. They tend towards being high-strung.

Leander, when his name is spoken, is anything but. He lifts his head, his ears already pricked at the sound of the hydraulic containers a room away. Prettiness has lost its objectivity, in the vastness and variety of the greater known universe. What is pretty to one person is green and monstrous to another. But Leander, by many humanoid standards for prettiness, is pretty indeed. His eyes are long, sleek and faultlessly blue, fringed by white-blond lashes. They regard Reese with a professional interest. White-blond: his hair and ears and the pile of endless, mink-y tail curled around him on the cushions. His complexion is better suited for the snows. The room is a little cooler with him in it, even with its deep wine reds and browns, its satins and smoke. A mahogany fur is falling off his shoulder, overlaid with jewellery: bits of gold and copper, rough ores, small bones picked clean. (That much is true.)

"Yes." Leander smiles at Reese, and it doesn't look much different from Ferox's snarl. "You're... Reese, from the shipping company." One of the mind-sparrows helpfully drops the name in his lap.
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XANDER
 Posted: Oct 26 2015, 01:02 PM
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Reese, from the shipping company. That is a... proper way to recall him. Reese's company is his own, and 'shipping' is mere the profitable aftermath of 'acquiring' -- in ways sometimes less than legal. His ship, Charybdis, is outfitted closer to a small battleship than a neutral freighter, though Reese argues that is because space is a very dangerous place, and he is just very committed to his business. His bodysuit looks resistant to high-speed projectiles and a few of the common attack acids.

"I am." He comes forward, and Leander can get a better look at him: tanned skin, long black hair, pinned up in the back, gold eyes, sharp jawline. By humanoid standards, he is the word 'handsome'. Certainly the professional regard is returned, but for a blink, his gaze sweeps across Leander, taking him in all-over. He offers his hand for a handshake, another human gesture found in Barencroft's book.

"Your shipment has been unloaded in the back. Was the last one to your satisfaction?" Reese clasps his elbows behind his back, and does not invite himself to sit down. It puts him in the somewhat intimidating position of looming over Leander, but... So much the better to look at him. He is a lovely specimen, for a Miramiaow.
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abbey
 Posted: Oct 27 2015, 01:52 PM
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Small shipping company. It rolls off the tongue better than 'illegal operation' or 'flying smuggler's cove', and with Leander's blue eyes and soft voice, it gives him an air of plausible deniability. He reaches for Reese's extended hand, but Reese still has to come a little closer and loom a little lower to take it; Leander shakes hands with just his fingers and knuckles clasping Reese's same, and the tips of his claws in Reese's palm, tickling his lifeline. His claws are smoothly curved keratin, with a depth to the cuticle that human fingernails don't have. He semi-retracts them when they shake.

"It met expectations." Like an average report card, a B+: meets expectations without exceeding them. There isn't the conversational politeness of attributing too much. He points to an overstuffed armchair across from him. "Please sit. Can I get you anything? A drink, or something you're amenable to?" His left leg is off the chaise, stretched all the way to the floor. The leather of his pants creaks over his thigh.

Lanquis only caters to one clientele, as the catnip delivery and the occasional claw marks in the furniture will tell. But there is a back-back room, where Leander keeps amenities for his guests. He looks at Reese. If he could pick a poison, what would it be?
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XANDER
 Posted: Nov 4 2015, 01:26 AM
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A 'C' is meeting expectations, according to certain planetary academic guidelines; 'B+' is exceeding them without knocking anyone over. Reese smiles. It is the smile of someone who has a plain confidence in their wares, and does not require excessive praise to bolster that confidence.

Though he considered disavowing memory of this meeting, Reese does not similarly debate declining the invitation. He likes looking at Leander, foreign species though he is; Ferrox is not totally wrong about humans and their demeaning fetishes. For what it is worth, his handshake is firm without being crushing, and there is no lewd glint to his steady gaze. He expands over the armchair, spreading out his arms and his legs. Even for a human, he is rather large.

"Oh, I think I should abstain. I wouldn't get anything else done." Reese smiles again. "Remind me, have you had Lanquis for very long?" The question isn't something he's interested in, but he is decent enough at perpetuating conversation. For a smuggler. For a pirate.
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