a Short Story by Kellis
A bell sounded, followed by a melodious female voice, loud but utterly indifferent. “Collision warning at four dash thirteen, 900 kay, three and a half vee.”
Pender snapped awake from his perpetual daydream and glanced at Spog, who dangled naked in his own restraint web. The red-bearded man looked back, eyes almost indifferent as the ship’s voice, and continued to pull on his outrageously huge erection. Obviously he had been awake for some time.
“Damn!” muttered Pender, shaking his dark mane. “Cuntless, say time to collision.”
“Four point two minutes.”
Spog grinned, detectable only by the twitching of his beard. “If you don’t scoot us sideways first.”
Pender’s lip curled. “What if I just let you jack off till it smashes us?”
The grin widened. “I might have to jack a little faster.”
Pender sniffed, touched bare foot to handhold, twisted his lanky frame and slithered into the control blister. “Cuntless, show me what’s coming.”
Celestial coordinates came up on the screen, 03.97 A and 13.32 D in the standard 16-point scales, which he ignored. His attention focused on the object centered in the view: a fuzzy white blob, and he understood its meaning immediately.
“Cuntless, compute vee difference with last report,” he ordered.
“On screen,” said the woman’s voice. The screen showed a negative fraction.
Pender slipped down enough in the blister to see Spog’s face. “It’s decelerating.”
The grin faded from Spog’s eyes and his hand fell still. “Looking for us?”
“Cuntless, say acceleration of object.”
“Minus point seven gee.”
Spog’s eyes flashed. “Shit!”
“Cuntless, say time to collision, assuming constant deceleration.”
“Eight and a half minutes.”
“Cuntless, say velocity at collision.”
“Under ten meters per second.”
“There you are,” Pender called in conclusion to the red beard beyond his feet. He punched a button on the control panel and raised his voice. “This is Prospo-477. Please identify yourself.”
He waited, watching the spectrum analyzer display. The outside emission level never varied … except for a gamma increase. “Cuntless, hull elemental analysis on screen.” And there it was: Cesium-134.
Pender announced, “His reaction water came from Saturn in the last four years.”
“So did ours,” said Spog with a shrug.
“Yeah, but it means he’s local.” He punched the emergency comm button and repeated his request for identification, again with no response.
“I don’t like that,” he said thoughtfully.
Spog sneered, “You don’t like it!”
Pender grinned sourly at the man. “Maybe now’s the time to tell me what you’re running from.”
The red beard looked away toward the suit locker, took a deep breath and looked back. “I paid you enough to raise your mortgage and all your penalties. I remind you my contract runs for another thousand hours.” His eyes narrowed. “Who’d you drop a hint to where we were going?”
Pender’s eyes rounded. “No one — neither living nor pseudolife!” He added righteously, “That would break the contract.”
“Yeah. I thought I smelled ethanol on you when you let me aboard. Did you stop off at a bar?”
Pender sniffed. “If you were a pilot, you’d know they wouldn’t let me through the seal.”
“Don’t remind me. If I were a pilot, I wouldn’t have needed you.” Spog took another deep breath. His erection had shrunk noticeably. He made a face at Pender, indicated by bizarre ripples in his beard. “And you’re the cuntless one, wouldn’t —”
“Voice not authorized,” the female tones interrupted.
Spog gritted his teeth and continued. “Wouldn’t even play the woman. If I’d known you were such a gender-bigot I would have …”
Pender asked in genuine interest, “What would you have done?”
The red beard turned fully away. Snow, formed as the approaching ship spewed reaction mass, whispered on the hull in the silence.
“Cuntless,” Pender called, “slip sideways one klick toward ay-two.”
He grasped handholds while the mild acceleration shoved them, then reversed itself to bring them again to the same vector. The whispering died away.
Spog asked hopefully, “Do you suppose he’s in distress, something wrong with his comm?”
Pender shook his head. “Waiting until he needed two thirds of a gee to stop sounds more like somebody sneaking up. What I don’t understand … Cuntless, put the last hour’s spectrum record onscreen… Uh-huh, no radar pulses but ours. She would’ve told us.” He nodded slowly. “He must’ve homed on ours.”
“Sure sounds like a cop,” Spog concluded morosely. “Are you doing anything you shouldn’t?”
“I don’t know. Like being in restricted space or not responding to an ID query.”
“We’ve had no query, ID or otherwise. The only restricted space my girl knows about is Ceres, a quarter of the way around the belt. No, Spog. He must be coming for you.”
The red bearded man’s blue eyes flashed. “Keep one thing in mind, Pender. You’re in this as deep as I am.”
“In what, Spog?”
“If as you suspect, the cops want me, you’re aiding and abetting a fugitive.”
“Am I? You know that ignorance is the perfect defense against collusion charges.”
“I’ll tell them you knew.”
“They only need to hear this conversation.”
“Your bitch of a ship is recording?”
“An eight-hour loop, as the law requires.”
Spog’s eyes hardened. “Bullshit.”
Pender glanced at the chronometer in one corner of the screen. “You have about three minutes to get it off your chest.”
This time the grin was large enough to part the red beard. “Don’t hold your breath, Pendy baby.”
They waited in the silence except for hull creaks on the sunlit side where snow had caught and was now sublimating. The videoscope tracked the approaching ship without being told. As it drew near, more and more of its hull became visible around the reaction plume. It came to rest at 970 meters distance as its drive shut down, image filling the screen.
Pender mused, “You may be right, Spog.”
“May be? Isn’t it a cop?”
“It’s about our size, two or four-man crew. Looks damaged. I see a blowout hole just forward of the inboard mass tank.”
“Half a meter, I’d say, with the edges curling out instead of in.”
“Half a meter? What in hell could do that?”
“A centimeter-sized meteor, impacting on the other side, could spread debris that wide, depending on impact speed, but I’d expect worse overall damage. It’s rotating… Ah! No dish.”
“Yeah. Its pedestal might have been over the blowout.”
“He still had his comm laser.”
“Maybe not. Some ships mount them in the center of the radar dish.”
“Then … I’ll be damned.” Spog’s face brightened. “Not a cop!”
“Probably not. Ha! Somebody just popped out of the airlock.”
“What’s he doing?”
Pender flipped a switch. “He’s on your screen now. Cuntless, zoom on the new object.”
When it filled their screens, both men recognized the naked body in a transparent emergency pod. “My god!” murmured Pender.
“That’s a woman!” declared Spog, grabbing a handhold and pulling himself closer to his screen, part way out of the net.
With a finger shove Pender pushed himself from the blister. “And she’s drifting off. I’ll have to get her.” He opened both suit locker doors. “You suit up too. I’m going to bottle our air.” Spog stepped into his own suit without arguing.
“Cuntless, save the air,” Pender ordered, keying the suit radio with his chin. A pump whined and his suit expanded slightly.
“Cuntless, move Prospo within 100 meters of the new object.”
Pender had clutched a handhold. Behind him Spog cursed when he missed his grab and the ship’s acceleration banged an equipment wall against his protected but unpadded elbow.
When the opposite acceleration died, Pender ordered, “Cuntless, open inner and outer doors.” The resulting puff of remaining air gave him a slight push toward them.
He slipped through the open airlock. The woman’s body was sunward to his left, her ship straight ahead. Pushing the recessed joyball on his hip, he caused thrusters to move him toward her then kill his closing velocity when he was at arms length.
This was a mature, ripe female. He put out a gloved hand to stop her spin with the head aligned to his own. Through the transparent pod he saw brown hair above olive skin and startlingly blue eyes, wide open and staring back. The mouth was also open, revealing white, even teeth, but she seemed not to be mouthing words. He waived his hand before her face but her eyes remained locked to his.
“How’s she look?” It was Spog’s voice in his ear.
“I think she’s alive. I’m bringing her in. Stand clear. Cuntless, warm up the autodoc.”
Pender attached his clip to the eyebolt in the top of the emergency pod, towed the ungainly package to his airlock and pushed it lengthwise into the ship. Spog stood clear as ordered but turned the pod to study the woman’s face as soon as Pender ordered the airlock closed and air restored in the ship.
When pressure had risen, Pender keyed the unpeeler and stepped out of his suit. He found and pulled the external release on the pod, which opened down the middle, spilling the woman’s body along with an odor of burning electronics that Prospo’s air cleaner quickly dissipated. He grasped her shoulders with the intention of stuffing her into the autodoc, whose cover stood open, but she shrugged him off.
“So you are alive!” he exclaimed.
With a touch on his elbow she stopped the rotation imparted by her shrug. Bright blue eyes glared at him and her nostrils flared in a deep breath, but her lips clamped together and she said nothing at all.
Spog, stepping away from his own suit and thus freeing it to withdraw into the locker, grinned at Pender. “Cat’s got her tongue.”
Aside from shorts, which Pender wore for their flap-covered pockets as well as deflection of Spog’s otherwise constant disparagements about penile size, the two men were equally naked. So was this woman, with thickly tufted pubes and underarms plus dark down on arms and legs. Only her head hair, straight and of neck length, so dark as almost to be black in the interior lighting, showed evidence of a barber’s touch. She stared frankly at Spog’s unconcealed manhood, standing up, as even the flaccid penis does in zero gee, a full 15 centimeters.
“But she likes what she sees,” declared Spog, grinning wide enough to show his teeth. “Baby, you haven’t seen anything yet.”
Pender moved to intercept her vision. “Miss, we have to ask you some questions. Who are you and what happened …”
His voice trailed off. With a few deft touches on walls and equipment she slipped around him straight to the exposed genitals. She caught Spog around the hips. Her body stretched out perpendicularly, obstructing Pender’s view, but he understood her objective well enough when the red bearded man gasped and straightened with a jerk.
Spog’s hands closed around her head. “God, what a pull!” he declared, eyes wide in delight.
Pender shook his head. He took a breath but could not resist moving to the side where the contact was fully visible. With her head tilted back her lips enclosed most of the organ. Her cheeks had collapsed around it and the tongue worked in her throat.
Spog grinned crookedly around at him. “Her other end is free.”
“I see that,” said Spender dryly. “What I don’t see is her motive.”
“Hell, that’s obvious. She loves cock. She thought she was about to die and never get one in her again.”
“Women don’t react so …”
“Honestly? Directly? Is it possible, Pendy baby, that you never had a woman who loved more than your money?” Spog threw back his head and laughed uproariously.
The woman’s foot, as if equipped with its own eye, found a projection and pushed off, turning both bodies. Her other foot contacted something on the adjacent wall and stopped them both. Her legs remained wide opened. Pender found himself staring down at the crimson line between slightly parted labia, the more eye-riveting for its dark, hairy surround.
“That’s plain enough,” said Spog, recovering from his laugh. “Give her a little fun too. I mean, warm her up. I’ll provide her the fun part, after she gets the taste she wants at this end.”
“Damn it, we need to find out who she is, what’s happened to her!”
“Well, you won’t get her to talk yet awhile.” Spog laughed again. “Come on. Give it to her, or I’ll know you’re queer after all.”
Pender had been effectively in the same room with Spog for almost 4000 hours, seeing, hearing and smelling the man’s nearly constant masturbation. He was not particularly surprised that this woman’s attitude and body, hairy or not, had speedily erected him too. Could she be hysterical in some manner? Had she been accustomed to sex but, judging from all the hair, been without it for a very long time? With her comm dead and possibly navigation dead as well, had her dying computer simply homed on Prospo’s radar pulses when it drifted within reach, using the remaining reaction mass? Obviously she had not lacked for food and water. Was Spog right for once?
Pender found himself removing his shorts. When she felt the contact of his thighs within hers, she pulled up her knees, flaring her nether cheeks. His arm caught her under the belly and he guided himself into her with the other hand. She was gratifyingly slick. He began to pump, grasping her hip bones in either hand.
She shivered. Spog sneered. “So she likes your little cock. Just wait, baby, till you get this one in there.”
That reminded Pender of his curiosity about her reaction to Spog’s equipment at its monstrous full extension. He shook his head and thrust the deeper, feeling his pleasure rise. It soon peaked. Straining against her, he emptied pent-up testicles.
Above him Spog sneered, “Jackrabbit!”
Pender tightened both arms around the woman’s belly, pulling his face down against her warm back. “Thank you, sweetheart,” he murmured, grateful indeed for his first proper release in 5000 hours. After a moment he thought to wonder at the survival of the word “jackrabbit,” given that the animal so named was said to be extinct even in Texas.
After a while Spog began to grunt. Pender raised his torso off the woman and sought to push away, only to find that her legs, hooked at the ankles, entwined him. He smiled, taking it as an act of affection. Slipping a hand into her groin, he stroked the lumpy clitoris. The lips and outer vagina, yielding to his thumb, were curiously dry, despite his recent expression of several — he was sure — cubic centimeters of liquid.
Spog stiffened with an unintelligible moan. His body twitched galvanically. “Whoa, ease off, baby!” Pender saw his pectorals bunch up, but apparently the woman was holding his hips too tightly to be thrust away before she was ready. “Oh, god!” the man called, body twisting. At last the female head withdrew, exposing twice the penile length it had originally engulfed. Spog breathed a delighted sigh of relief —
Only to have the breath forced from his chest as the woman suddenly convulsed. Her arms and legs slammed the two men together. Spog was thrown over her back so that his head thudded into Pender’s. Dazed, the men hung immobile, eyes and mouths bulging, for the moment she needed to cram them together into a restraint net, pull the external fastener closed and remove the release bar.
“Wh-wh-what …” Pender stuttered. His hand clasped his head, unaware of the 35 centimeter erection still leaking on his hip while its owner shook his head groggily.
The woman smiled at him and pronounced her first words. “First I thank you for what might have been a very nice fuck. Second I inform you that you are both my prisoners.”
Pender’s head was clearing. He pushed distastefully away from his companion, but the net immediately shoved him back. “Your p-prisoners? What are you, some kind of a pirate?”
She smiled smugly and raised her voice. “First override sequence: green meteors shave without razors.”
When nothing happened, she blinked. “So this ship has been commandeered before, has it?” Again she raised her voice. “Second override sequence: the great red spot sucks before breakfast.”
Immediately the ship’s female voice responded, “Override accepted. Override voice key accepted. Attention word: cuntless.”
“That’s not very original,” sneered the woman.
“How would a pirate learn the overrides?” Pender demanded.
She shook her head. “Don’t jump to conclusions.” Again raising her voice, she soon elicited details of the ship’s ownership, its ports, cargoes and trips for the last 6000 hours and the name Spog for the passenger but not the details of the current contract. Curiously she asked no question of the humans.
“You must have already known all that,” observed Pender when the ship fell silent.
“I merely wondered if your ship did. Cuntless, evacuate the airlock and open its outer door.”
“What’s going on?” asked Spog with a whimper.
Pender took a deep breath. “She’s a cop of some kind.”
“You mean the cops can take over a ship with that shit about green meteors?”
“Only this ship. Each one has unique override sequences that they don’t even give to the owners. Somebody must have seen you come aboard Prospo.”
“So, Mr. Pender,” pounced the woman, “you knew this personality who calls herself Spog was wanted!”
“No, but the way he behaved — Herself?”
The woman’s mouth twisted. “I agree. No female should ever grow a 35 cm. penis. Mr. Joel Pender, whose DNAID and mentation index agree with the record, meet Ms. Grace Olin, whose mentation index agrees and whose DNAID matches the record of her last decanting — into a male genup with the gene for red hair. This grotesque appendage” — her hand reached out and touched the flaccid object, which Spog snatched away — “must have been an afterthought.”
“You should see what it can do for you,” Spog groused.
“Trying to push it down my throat reminded me that I have a sensitive cervix, thank you just the same. Mr. Pender, you may be interested to know that Ms. Olin is far worse than merely a sex changer with an oversized cock.” She chuckled. “Neither of those is actually illegal. But killing 3000 Loonies is, even if it was accidental and even if all but one were recovered from backup.”
“I flipped the wrong switch,” Spog protested weakly.
“So you said. Except the bottle you switched into their air supply, after appearing as evidence in your trial, was reapplied to another warren. And you know what happened then.”
“What?” asked Pender.
“Another 1500 tried to breath it and couldn’t.”
“Damn it, it was still an accident.”
“You can tell that to your next judge.”
“But this time they might destroy my personality!”
“Yes, they might.”
Spog gritted his teeth and began to tear at the restraint net. The woman took something from a pocket on her emergency pod — a tiny needler, Pender saw — and shot Spog’s unprotected chest. The struggling man spasmed and went limp. Pender turned, wide-eyed, to the woman, but she had lowered the needler.
“Mr. Pender,” she intoned, “do you admit to harboring this known fugitive?”
He took a breath. “I didn’t know he was a criminal.”
She nodded complacently. “I thought as much. You’ll come out of this okay.” She smiled. “Maybe we can even resume where we left off.” She released him from the net, but locked it again on the unconscious Spog.
“Are you actually human?” Pender asked her curiously.
“Would you have fucked me if you thought otherwise?”
“I …” He laughed self-consciously. “It’s been a long time. How could you analyze the … Ah! You have nanotech augmentation.”
“Of course.” She grinned. “And it had a curious effect. Regular guys run when they hear about it, even when they learn how much I love cock.”
He looked into her eyes. “Guess I must not be a regular guy.”