Log entry: 3303-02-04.01
By: Franciska Charron, a.k.a. Franka.
Function: Contracted Chef aboard the private deep space explorer vessel 'Crank' under Commander Beamer Miasma.
Last Friday night Beamer showed up on my doorstep. It was late, I was already dressed for bed watching the news before turning in. As I opened the door to my little cabin on Fisher Port he stumbled in - space leg style - picked me up and kissed me hard before explaining the reason of his arrival.
- "You quit your job, we're going to Colonia."
I love his independence but sometimes he gets a little disconnected from how normal people run their life. I calmly explained to him it was Friday night and I'd have to wait until the morning before I could quit my job, and then I'd have a week's worth of contractual obligations before I could leave. He waved a paper in front of my face.
- "It was a statement of fact, not a request. I bought your contract, you work for me now. Ship's cook. Your rent has been paid 3 months ahead, if we're away longer we'll wire it from Colonia."
He's my perfect Prince. Half an hour later we were on our way to his new Asp Explorer, wearing our matching skinsuits.
was a gift on his 20th birthday, from his father. The elaborate design on the suit is a tradition that dates back some 40 generations, all the way to humanity's first steps to not just visit space, but live in it. This particular artwork is exclusively worn by the Miasma family and is as old as the tradition itself. It is a matte black skinsuit adorned with iridescent silvery clouds that shimmer with lots of greens, browns and yellows as the angle of reflection changes. On the chest a figure of a beautiful woman is breaking through the smoke, she is wearing a skinsuit herself. Her legs are still hidden in the mists but her torso and head are sticking out of it and she is reaching out her left arm as if searching for help to escape the billowing clouds. Closer inspection shows that her eyes are glowing green and a smirk - or perhaps a snarl - is curling her lips, suggesting that her intention is not to escape the clouds with a helping hand but rather to pull her wanton saviour back into the miasma with her.
On my own 20th birthday two years after his, late at night after the party had ended and we were snuggling up together, he presented a big wrapped up package. He had already given me a gorgeous necklace during the party so I had no idea what it could be. As I unwrapped the package and took out the skinsuit, holding it up I saw he had the Miasma design re-created on my suit, this time with a male figure instead of a female, and reaching out his right arm instead of the left. I fumbled anxiously to pull it on, he helped me with it and after he zipped up the last closure on the back he put his right arm around my shoulder and guided me in front of the mirror, my left arm automatically wrapping around his back just the way we so often stood or sat under one of the observation domes on the research ship, staring at the stars together.
I looked in the mirror and was dumbfounded. Standing like this it looked exactly like the two figures were holding hands and the effect of that change on the interpretation of the artwork was dramatic. Instead of looking like they were going to pull someone in to their doom, the figures looked like two super heroes escaping from danger by joining hands and wooshing out of a poisonous explosion. The snarls had changed to expressions of grim determination to escape doom and survive. Instead of reaching for help, the outstretched arms were punching a hole in the smoke to facilitate their escape.
It is the best gift I ever got and it is my most prized possession, more so than my traditional Japanese folded steel Chef's knife, and that's telling.
Even though I loved it from the moment I laid eyes on it and have worn it when I was shipside ever since, I think at the time I was still too young and naive to fully appreciate what it meant. This suit is as close to a wedding ring as I'll ever get from him. Beamer is not the marrying type, he's too independent for that and has no respect for the authority of institutions that perform weddings anyway... but the fact that I have this suit means that he will be there for me, for as long as I keep it. Not just as family, if it had been just that he would have given me a suit with the Miasma design. He made them match like this to say that I'm his woman, he's my man, until the void claims us. Together we are better, stronger, more than the sum of us alone.
He tore out of Fisher Port like Murphy Himself had opened the airlock to the universe, jumping to witch space before flight control could wish him a safe journey. I leaned over to him and put my hand on his shoulder.
- "Are you OK? Did something happen?"
- "I'm OK, just need some alone time"
He's always been a bit of a loner, even as a child. For me 'alone time' was punishment my mom gave me when I had been naughty. For Beamer, it was more of a survival necessity. If he said he needed alone time all you'd get out of him was a grunt or snarl. I started to stand up, wondering if I should remark it would have been more considerate if he had taken his alone time before he pulled me out of my life to go to Colonia. He grabbed my hand, pulling me into his lap and wrapping his arms around me as he kissed my forehead.
- "Not from you, silly. Just... people."
- "Oh... am I not people?"
Sometimes it's like pulling teeth. I don't mind, they're not my teeth. I smiled at him.
- "Why is that?"
- "Because you don't annoy me, Frankie."
I curled up and settled in his lap wrapping my arms around him, leaning close so he could reach the controls around me. I knew that was all I was going to get out of him about it right now.
- "I love you. Stop calling me Frankie."
- "Never... I love you too. Now go make me a sandwich, Chef."
- "I'll go when I hear your belly rumble."
Something has changed about him, I don't know what caused it, yet. I'll find out though. The one thing I know is that it's a change for the better, at least for me... for us.
It's going to be a wonderful trip, I only wish Colonia was further away.