“I could get addicted to these things,” Damion said, as he popped the last of the cookie in his mouth.
“Moby? Could you oblige us with another plate full, please,” I asked.
“Coming right up,” Moby said.
The Yakoshi had barely said hello and it was off to chase the Helavites in the direction Ma-rye-a indicated with her tracking information. So, we had sat for another hour and a half until MT 2424 arrived. Coal was in on the conversation this time by com link. He was taking notes at his console aboard the galactic vessel as we discussed what I had seen. Captain Targus was doing the questioning and Damion was reveling in Moby’s cooking skills.
“Make sure you pocket a couple of those for me,” Coal said over the com.
Damion smiled at Coal on the monitor and bit into another cookie with relish.
Targus had already asked me to recount what I had observed in detail. Now he placed a wanted poster on my console. “Did they look like this?” he asked.
The drawing made my skin crawl. No one had ever been able to get a photo or vid of the beetles and live to show it. With all our technology, a drawing was the best the Verse had.
“Yes, that’s them,” I responded. “I’m sorry we weren’t able to get a picture of them for you. I was just in a pretty big hurry to get out of their way.”
“Understandable,” the Captain said. “I am thankful we are not picking up the debris of Ma-rye-a.
“Me too,” Ma-rye-a piped in.
“Sorry,” I apologized. “I’ve made them very interactive AIs.”
“I’m sure they are a lot of company to you on long trips,” Damion offered.
“You can’t imagine,” I confirmed.
Targus folded up his poster and stuck it back in his breast pocket. “Where are you headed from here?”
“I was on my way to Outpost #68 for the birthday party of a friend. I don’t think I feel much like a party now. I may go back to Trade post #1313 and see if I can pick up another load.” I didn’t want to say anything about Daniel and have Damion get the wrong idea. I just thought I might hang out at the Trade post until it was time to take off for Valaria and the GTD celebration.
“Well, we won’t keep you any longer, Captain,” Targus said as he rose to his full seven feet eight inches (I had gotten up my courage to ask). He shook my hand and headed toward the cargo bay.
“Here,” I said. I handed Damion the remainder of the cookies. “Some for the empty space.”
“Thanks, we’re going to have to stop meeting like this,” Damion said. “I have leave soon. If we don’t get caught up in a Helavite confrontation, will you be at Trade post #1313 long?”
“For a couple of weeks. Then I am headed to GTD on Valaria,” I answered. “Any hope of you coming by that way?”
“Not much,” he replied. “Valaria is a wee bit out there for us.”
“Maybe later,” I offered with a smile.
“Definitely later,” he said and leaned over and gave me a kiss on the cheek. “Thanks for the cookies.”
I felt a tingle down to the soles of my spacer boots.
My luck, I hate long distance romances.