Nocturne 8 – In Space, in an Egg…
The two escape pods pushed out of the back end of the Apatosaurus-shaped command starship both looked like extremely large dinosaur eggs. Two command-level officers were being marooned in space in each pod. Fortunately for those inside the space-dino eggs, Admiral Cloudstalker and Captain Black Fly in one, ADaB and PiP, the two Djinnistani Peris, in the other, they were still on the edge of the Don’t Go Here star system. They could communicate with Aerobase Frieda and be rescued within a couple of hours at sub-light speeds.
“Well, I guess I really blew that one,” Arkin Cloudstalker said, referring to the theft of their command vessel while they were making their initial inspection tour.
“You really can’t blame yourself for this one, sir,” Black Fly said sympathetically.
“What do you mean? Certainly, I can blame myself if I want to. It’s what good leaders do… take responsibility for failures, I mean.”
“You didn’t fail. You were taken prisoner in a very well-planned shipboard insurrection carried out by a group of religious fanatics, the very existence of which no one could’ve even predicted, much less defeated.”
“We were aware such a cult existed, weren’t we?”
“No. We were not. You can take my word for it as a top agent of the White Duke’s special intelligence forces. We knew there were scholars and zealots who followed the prophecies religiously, but no one knew they had leadership with Imperial Intelligence training and a gift for military plans just like the one we fell victim to. If you have to blame someone, blame me. I’m the one with the intelligence responsibilities and long years of training.”
“Well, I certainly don’t blame you. Tell me, since Black Fly is some kinda code name, do you even have a real name?”
“My name is legally now “the Black Fly,” my mother once called me Amanda… and you can too, if you like.”
Arkin nodded. He would certainly remember that name. He knew that he preferred it to her real name.
“Maybe we should put in a call to ADaB and PiP. They may have called Frieda already. I’m sure help is probably on the way.”
“It’s part of the genius of Lizard Lady’s plan that she kidnapped us, and waited until we were at the edge of the heliosphere before she set us adrift in space.”
“She knew that no one could blast her out of orbit with you still on board. You’re the Grand Admiral, after all.”
“Well, that’s something I will have a hard time living down with Tron Blastarr. I lost his brand-new starship design the very first time I was acting as the Grand Admiral.”
“He shouldn’t be that hard to handle. You’re his boss now, you know,” she answered.
“Yes, that’s true, isn’t it?”
Arkin reached over to the comm unit on the inside wall of the space egg. He punched in the code for the other egg.
“Um, Admiral… ah… um, ah, AH, AAAHHH!” said ADaB’s voice, cryptically.
“What’s happening, ADaB? Are you being murdered?”
“Um, ah… no, Admiral. It’s PiP. She says we have a couple of hours to kill. And, well… She’s very much a female you know.”
“Yes, I know.”
“And the average female Peri is taught many years’ worth of love-making skills on Djinnistan. And she’s… she’s… very GOOoooOOOoodddD! Um, gotta go now, boss…”
“Hmm. And here I thought the two of them didn’t really like each other very much.”
When Arkin looked at Black Fly Amanda, though, he noticed the evil sparkle in her eyes and the smirk on her face.
“Why are you looking at me like that?” Arkin asked.
“Well, those two little imps put some ideas in my head. And, anyway, you had to have noticed where it was always going to end up between the two of us. Am I right?”
Arkin Cloudstalker blushed furiously. He was a Space Knight, a hero in a white cowboy hat. He had worked with Lady Knights for years, and never once…
And then beautiful Amanda kissed him. He reached up and switched off the lights.