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All Systems Optimal

Angela Daniels
New Dawning Bookfair , English
1 rating

Tage is facing banishment from the planet he calls home, and the only two humans who call him friend. He’s not suppose to care. It’s not part of his programming. But as his departure gets closer he’s plagued with unfamiliar sensations and thoughts that can only be described as erotic. All aimed at Sean and Lolly. On his last night with them will he discover he’s capable of love, only to have to say goodbye?
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“Leave it to you to see luxury in what everyone else considers a hovel.” She looked up to the glass dome that covered the short length of the module acting as ceiling and walls. “It is beautiful, but a bit oppressive.”

He followed her gaze. A coral garden in infinite colors of teal, yellow, and purple stretched up jaggedly some distance from the front of the dome. Beyond was endless blue. “I have lived here since the overcrowding laws required me to leave topside. Three years and I am not tired of the view.”

Lolly shuddered. “So much water. And the damn seals always leaking. I worry that I’ll see a newsflash on the vid: ‘Hydro Terrace apartment building implodes under weight of a napping jelly fish.’” She waved her hands in front of her face in mock terror.

Tage laughed, pleased that humor was within his parameters. She was so vibrant and gregarious that it would be difficult to relate to her otherwise. He enjoyed their interactions. He gave into an impulse to touch her and playfully flicked her earlobe. “It is not as fragile as that. And anyway droids cannot drown, remember?”

She pursed full, shapely lips colored with a rich cinnamon gloss. He stared a moment, wondering if she would taste like cinnamon if he kissed her.

Her eyes twinkled as she gave him a slow inviting smile, as if she knew what he was thinking. His heartbeat quickened and his control over his body functions slipped enough that his shaft thickened. He turned back to the fruit on the counter and ran a hand through his tousled brown hair before he resumed slicing.

Lolly, incurable flirt that she was, would perhaps let him satisfy his curiosity, but he had good reason to hesitate. That reason pinged the door hatch as Tage struggle to calm down his erection.

Lolly skipped the three steps to the hatch and flung it open. From the doorway, Ian gave her a small smile which accentuated the perfection of his face. A gently squared jaw and high cheekbones gave him a rugged look, while wide sky blue eyes under shaggy chocolate eyebrows suggested sensitivity.

He wore his usual-a simply cut light cotton shirt with short sleeves, and baggy tan work pants. The snug shirt stretched across his toned chest, and was a light blue that made his eyes stand out. Tage’s throat tightened at the sight of him, accompanied by a pleasant lightness in his chest. Ian had always been beautiful to him, but lately, as with Lolly, his body’s reactions were intense and off program.

Ian moaned in appreciation and pulled her closer, one hand running over her short white dress and tight, round ass. “I love your way of being upset with me.” He gave Tage a teasing grin over her head. “And you mate? You upset too?”

Tage tilted his head as he attempted to decipher his friend’s meaning. Though sure Ian was making a joke rather than an invitation, Tage imagined walking over, squashing Lolly between them, and sliding his tongue between Ian’s lips. As the image burned in his mind, desire flared in his belly.

This is too much. Tage instructed the operating system of his postironic central nervous system to send out the necessary signals to calm the excited parts of his anatomy. His throat and erection relaxed immediately, but the feeling of lightness in his chest remained.

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