tagSci-Fi & FantasyStarship Traveler Ch. 06

Starship Traveler Ch. 06


Starship Traveler: Chapter Six:


The next time she 'ordered' a meal Xeno carried a large strangely textured bowl in one of his other hands. "You wished to observe me when I consumed food?"

Revekah looked at the sushi she was about to eat and set it down beside her, suddenly queasy. "Yes, I guess so."

"My food is not varied like yours. This is my daily meal." He held out the bowl for her to look at. She cautiously looked in, half expecting to see something alive in there and was surprised to see a number of greenish looking objects. She looked closer and realized that they were wrapped packages of something. They looked like really large cabbage rolls or maybe something wrapped in grape leaves.

"What is inside them?"

"A mixture of vegetables and protein."

"And you just pick them up with your tongue?"


"Okay, that's not too weird." She picked up her plate of sushi and began to eat. "Don't wait for me to finish. Go ahead, eat." She watched as he efficiently picked the packets up one at a time, his tongue retracting into his mouth and almost instantly returning for another. She watched but as far as she could tell they just slid down inside him without any observable swallowing action.

"So when do you drink?"

"I drink in the immersion pool while I am submerged."

She giggled at the thought of him subsisting on bathwater. "That may be almost too weird. Where do you excrete?"

"I am tempted to try a joke, but considering your violent reaction to my suggestion that you excrete where you sleep, I suspect you would not find it humorous if I were to say 'in the immersion pool.'

"Oh my god, don't even think that. That is too horrible." But she was laughing hysterically.

"In truth, I have limited that activity to a room not in use, considering your preferences to keep your body distant from your excretions."

"I appreciate that."


It was day seventy-two before she could no longer force her mind away from her need. She had woken early from a particularly erotic dream and automatically sent a query to Xeno and found she had only slept for three hours. She requested for him to keep the lights off, and tried to go back to sleep, but try as she might she could not force her mind away from her restless hunger. Her hands stroked the length of her body and she thought back to her dream. She had been swimming in deep warm water and the pernicious tingling and itch had been unbearable. She had begged Geoff to scratch it. He had only grinned his devilish grin and told her to scratch it herself. He had told her he wanted to watch her. She had tried, but no matter how hard she had rubbed at it, it had just gotten worse and worse. She had been weeping in need when she woke.

Slowly, almost shyly her fingers found their way to her center. She forced her mind to picture Geoff watching her, his eyes hot and filled with love. When her climax shook through her, she made a soft whimpering cry, "I love you."

As she lay soft and limp, feeling the echoes of her spent feelings, she felt a little sad and alone. She had an irrational wish for a blanket or a teddy bear as she slowly slipped back into sleep.

Revekah found herself feeling sheepish and embarrassed as Xeno greeted her when she woke. But he followed her instructions perfectly, making no reference to her 'self stimulation' in the night. For once she was appreciative of the fact that there was no way for her to discern his expression. His alien 'face' looked just as neutral as ever and his voice was just as caring and as warm as usual.


One day ran into another. Revekah was quickly becoming very aware of the sheer amount of distance and time involved in being a Traveler. Eternity stretched out before her and she realized it was going to take an eternity to get anywhere. She studied hours every day in the data room, realizing that learning was one of the few refuges from mind-numbing boredom.

She had learned how to make her way from one room to the next and had explored the whole ship a hundred times.

She had tried to imagine a jigsaw puzzle, but all the pieces turned out the same shape. When she explained it to Xeno, the second attempt was a little better but she had only managed to get the puzzle about half finished on the flat end of her bed when she went to sleep and woke to find it gone. She had had a major temper tantrum then, screaming at the ship to give it back and stomping on the floor.

Imagining a deck of cards was better. She played solitaire and then taught Xeno how to play cribbage. He was quite good at playing and seemed to enjoy it too. He said that cards were a very marketable concept and that he was thinking about selling the game. With his help Revekah had researched and taught him as many different card games as she could find.

She taught him to play chess and then he taught her a more complex strategy game that worked on a three-dimensional board. He always won, but she could tell she was improving in her abilities.

When she learned he had the contents of nearly every book written in the data banks she began to ask for books a few chapters at a time and began to read insatiably, casually dropping the pages to the floor when she had finished them.

Her hair grew out to about shoulder length and she found it was almost perpetually damp and in her eyes. She had imagined a pair of scissors and carelessly cut it off quite short, only an inch or two long. It grew out again and she cut it again. When Xeno told her that it had been a year on the ship she did not feel much excitement about the anniversary. She just sighed and muttered, "... and many more."

She found herself retreating into day dreams a lot, thinking hard about Geoff. She told herself that she was just working to keep the memories alive but she also knew it was an escape from the perpetual boredom of the ship. More and more frequently she would allow her hands to slip down and bring her pleasure, calming her restlessness. She told herself that she was giving Xeno pleasure too but she could not bring herself to speak of this with him.

But she continued to feel lonely and it seemed like the more she thought about Geoff the more she missed him. It seemed like he did not visit her in her dreams like he used to. Sometimes now after she had sought her own lonely pleasure, she would find herself weeping softly. Finally one time as she lay there in the dark afterwards, the tears sliding silently down her face, Xeno spoke softly in her head, "Revekah, why do you feel so sad?"

She did not even speak out loud. She just thought the words in her head, "I just feel so lonely afterwards sometimes. I just need to feel loved."

"What would make you feel loved, Revekah?"

She lay there in the dark and thought about that question. She tried out a dozen answers, but they all frightened her. Did it mean she wanted to feel wanted? She knew that Xeno had spent millennia wanting her. Did it mean she wanted to feel needed? Again she knew he needed her, he had spoken of that need and yet had been willing to set it aside to insure her comfort. She spoke out loud, "Xeno you love me, don't you?"

"Very much, Revekah."

"It is very frightening for me to know that. I am terrified to love you. I love the voice in my head. But when I look at you, how different you are from me, I can't come to terms with that. You don't look right. You don't feel right. You don't even smell right. All I get from you is this continual feeling of wrongness. And then I close my eyes and I hear your voice in my head and it is music. I am confused as hell. And all I know is I need something more if I am going to make this thing work."

"I would do anything to make you happy, Revekah."

"Could you come here? But leave the lights off. Just come and sit on end of the bed like you always do. I just don't want to be alone right now."

She could hear his steps as he moved to sit and once he was there she scooted down and sat beside him. "Lift all your arms up and wrap them around me. Kind of hug me up close to you. I need to feel arms around me." As she felt his arms surround her she felt something slip loose inside her and she began to sob softly.

"Is this distressing to you, Revekah?"

"No, I will be alright. I just need to cry for a while."

When she finally calmed she took a deep shuddering breath. "Do you remember me telling you how hard I fought loving Geoff? How I did not want to let my guard down?"

"Yes, Revekah."

"This is going to be ten times as hard."

"Tell me what you need."

"Okay, can you rock back and forth just a little? It is kind of soothing." As he began to gently rock she yawned, "If I fall asleep just lay me down. You don't have to stay here."

"I will stay as long as you need me to."

When she woke, she was lying curled up on her side and when she sighed and stretched, Xeno spoke softly in her head. "Do not be startled, Revekah. I am still sitting on the end of the bed."

"Did you stay all night?"

"Yes, in case you felt lonely again."

"That was sweet, but it is not that big of a ship. If I need you I will call for you."

"There are some things that do need attending to. If you need me call for me."

Revekah made her way to the data room and began to look up all the information she could find on massage. When Xeno came into the room she spoke softly. "Xeno, could you make some reading materials for me and then could you review this information? I think it is time for me to get used to you touching me and I think this will help. Come tell me when you are done reading this." She took her book and went to her room to wait. She knew it wouldn't be long; he could absorb data much more quickly than her.

She was still reading her book when he spoke in her head. "I have finished reviewing the data you asked me to look at."

"Do you think you could do that? Give me a massage?"

"Yes, Revekah."

"When you make the massage oil, could you make it smell like this?" Revekah closed her eyes and concentrated on the way Geoff smelled, pouring every ounce of her memory into it.

"I could do that. Do you want me to do this now?"

"Want is a relative word. I need to be touched and held and you are going to be the one that is going to end up doing it. I need to learn to accept that touch from you without my skin crawling. The only way to do that is get started and get used to it."

When he came in, he had a small bottle of clear liquid in his hand. Revekah held out her hand. "Pour a little into my hand. I want to smell it." He tipped the bottle up and she rubbed the warm oil between her palms and held them up to her face. Instantly she felt her heart lurch. She murmured softly, "Geoff, wherever you are. I need you to help me with this."

She turned, lay down on her stomach, closed her eyes and spoke softly, "Turn the lights down to almost, but not quite, dark. Just massage my neck, shoulders and back for now. Let's start out gentle and I will tell you how it feels. I will tell you what I need."

Xeno's voice was so gentle, "Revekah, when I touch you, I know how it feels."

Revekah blinked and thought the words, "Then this will be just as difficult for you."

At first it was horrible. Her muscles were rigid and unyielding. Every time he touched her she could feel her skin almost trying to pull away. "Talk to me while you do it. I need to hear your voice in my head."

Xeno began to recite the names of the muscles as he began to massage them, a kind of a Latin poetry. The nonsense syllables of the Latin words had a kind of hypnotic rhythm, "...latissimus dorsi, levator scapulae, rhomboideus major, rhomboideus minor, serratus anterior, trapezius, erector spinae, iliocostalis, interspinales, intertransversarii, longissimus, multifidus, obliquus capitis inferior, obliquus capitis superior, rectus capitis posterior major, rectus capitis posterior minor, rotators, semispinalis, serratus posterior inferior, serratus posterior superior, spinalis, splenius, splenius capitis, splenius cervicis..."

Slowly, almost imperceptibly, she began to relax, her muscles softening. She forced herself to breathe deeply and rhythmically with the slow, steady push and pull of his hands, inhaling the familiar scent of the oil. She was intensely aware that he was using all four hands on her back, his stronger fingers probing deep and his finer hands were just the slightest bit abrasive, but it felt soothing.

After a while she spoke softly. "Thank you, Xeno, that is enough for now. That felt really pretty nice. You did a good job and next time I am sure I will enjoy it more. I just need to learn to let go of my fears." She rolled over onto her back and forced herself to look up at him in the dim light. "You know it isn't just that you look like an alien. It is a lot of things. I think I am feeling like I am betraying Geoff a little. I know it is irrational, but he was the only one for me for so long and I guess I was a mate for life kind of woman. It will take awhile for me to make that adjustment."

"We have all the time in the universe, Revekah. I just do not want you to be unhappy."

"Hopefully this will help. I will need this every day. Do you think you could do that for me?"

"I would do anything for you, Revekah."


It took nearly twenty days before she could relax and enjoy the massages. Only then did she roll over and allow him to massage the front of her body, but even then she made it very clear that he was not to touch her breasts or genitals. Every night she would cuddle up to his side as they talked, asking him to hold and rock her to sleep. She found herself asking for the Geoff scented massage oil frequently. The smell seemed to help her relax to his touch.

She found she was thinking of Geoff less and Xeno more and she knew that had to happen if she was going to be happy. She was beginning to think of the scent as Xeno's rather than Geoff's and she did not correct herself.

One night in the dark as he held her sheltered in his embrace, gently rocking, she whispered, "I want to lie down and could you lie down next to me, kind of, um... cuddle up to me? Lie still and could you do this one more thing? Could you recite the names of the muscles, like you do when you are massaging me?"

As she lay back in his arms, listening to the familiar Latin poetry and began to lightly caress herself, she spoke one last time, "I am not going to even try to come. I am just going to do this for a little bit and then go to sleep. We will work on the fireworks show after we get good at this part."

It took nearly three months before she could relax enough to reach orgasm in his arms. She turned to him, dripping in sweat, her eyes filled with tears. Her voice was husky with spent effort. "That was a lot of work for a pretty small goal. Now this is what I needed, please wrap all four of those crazy arms around me and hold me close."


By year two Revekah had mastered the use of the data machine and was busily forcing herself to become accustomed to a base twelve numerical system. She was also learning the written language of the Kofandi race, but for the life of her she could not begin to hear the subtleties of their tonal language. The Kofandi were the most common trading partners of the Travelers and some of their written texts were not translated. She also was learning the universal trading language that all the other interstellar species used when there was not a Traveler translator available. The trading language was made up of both an audible language and a simultaneous sign language.

Revekah began practicing Yoga daily to help with her continued feelings of claustrophobia and restlessness. She kept Xeno busy with continued daily massages and creating endless little things; like exercise mats, make up, music players, toys. Xeno had drawn the line at candles. Evidently fire was not part of his experience and he did not like it around him. He said something about it tasting wrong in the air. Every night she demanded to be held until she fell asleep whether she shared with him sexually or not. She had made a clear conscious decision to not go crazy.

She still could not say that she loved him. Every time she tried to say the words they would stick in her throat.

It was almost year three when she asked him to touch her sexually for the first time. Taking his hand and guiding it with her own as she gently teased herself closer to her pinnacle. To her relief she did not find it the least bit of a distraction; in fact she found the heat of his fingers an enhancement to her excitement. She spoke softly to him, "That's good. I like that." As she arched her body against his hand and trembled in anticipation of her finish, she whispered for the first time, "I love you," and then the pleasure surged through her.

As she lay trembling against him she held his hand against her face and whispered, "I am getting better at this."

His voice in her head was soft and happy, "Yes you are, pretty mind. You are everything I had hoped for and more. Thank you for your gifts to me."


It took another five years before she could forget he was an alien and he just became Xeno. She would still tense if his tongue came too close to her face, but she was developing a very marked preference for feeling it elsewhere on her body.

Revekah was rapidly developing a ravenous appetite for sex. And Xeno seemed always to have time for sharing the feelings she was starting to crave. She was starting to very much appreciate a lover with two sets of arms, one set strong enough to lift her and hold her in any position, a second set to caress and touch, and a prehensile tongue that could reach anywhere, and she took very great pains to test out that anywhere theory over and over again. She would giggle and ask if she still tasted like chicken.

Xeno could tell almost before she did what felt 'right'. Intimately linked to her, his telepathy literally gave him a sixth sense about when and where to touch her. His caresses were magical, lighting fires in her mind. Not only was he finding erogenous zones Revekah had no idea existed, Xeno was increasingly becoming a delightfully aggressive and innovative lover. He was a connoisseur of orgasms and seemed to pursue them with a single minded intensity that lifted Revekah to higher planes of passion than she had ever thought possible.

She loved to have him hold her helpless and tease her to the brink of explosion for what seemed like hours. She would beg for release, but Xeno would murmur in her head, "Travelers are patient, pretty mind. It will be all the sweeter if you wait just a little longer." Then he would push her excitement just a little higher and higher until she felt like she would die from waiting. Then he would finally push her over the edge and keep up the stimulation as she came over and over, screaming out her love for him, not relenting until she had nothing left to give and was delirious with spent passion.

Revekah knew she was totally, madly in love with an alien. She found herself grinning and humming. She could not be near him without reaching to touch him, press her lips to his hot flesh, and whisper crazy lustful thoughts to him. She kept giggling for no apparent reason other than because she felt so insanely happy.

One night as she lay spent in his arms, drifting to sleep, she giggled again, "Is this what it is going to be like for eternity? Perhaps I did die. I think you are really an angel and I am in heaven."

By the time they reached the feeding grounds for the ship, Revekah had only faint memories of her life before coming on board the ship. She would look at the pictures and movies of her life on Earth with a faint sense of nostalgia and remembered happiness. She still loved to look at pictures of Geoff and remember that she had used to love him. But it was all long ago. It seemed being on board the ship had been her whole life.

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