The next morning I awoke to find the shower occupied. I grinned and appreciated that I had a Sybarite child, someone as appreciative of feeding and caring for her own body as I was of mine. Thinking about Sheja that way bothered me yet again, and I wished that I could reconcile the rush of lust thinking about her gave me with my personal morals that told me to keep my hands off.
The worst part it was that she was probably very aware of my attraction; I'm sure she and P'nyssa had talked about it. Which I regard as a good thing. Although in the millennium since meeting P'nyssa I have never violated my personal mores of consent, I have just enough faith in the strength of human desire to warn others about it.
I had just sat down to look through some correspondence I had been putting off while enjoying myself flitting hither and thither over Battia when Sheja came walking out of the shower wearing nothing but a smile. "Ah," she sighed, "It's great to have a real shower, with real dryers-- and privacy!" She grinned.
"Yeah, I bet. I wouldn't know, seeing as someone as been in there all morning," I needled her. "Go get dressed, sweetheart."
She nodded and disappeared into her bedroom. After a few minutes, she re-emerged. "How does this look?"
I turned. She had chosen to dress in a blue dress with yellow polka dots, including the leather of her slipperboots, and I thought it looked quite fetching. Her fur is black but for two thin, white striped down the back that extended over the outrageously bushy tail she had inherited from her father. Her eyes were squared off by her muzzle but dropped to sharp points at the outside; her muzzle was short and wide, another of her father's qualities. She had tiny ears, which came from her mother. "It looks wonderful, kid."
"Good! Gotta go to school! See ya!" She bounded out the door, but before it closed she put her hand in the way and it reopened. "Dad?"
"Get over it. Oh, by the way, are you gonna talk to Dao? He's on board." Then she allowed the door to close.
I stared after her as she left and I wondered what she meant, exactly, by "get over it." Somehow I think she was referring to my constant look-avoid-look at her, especially when she's not wearing clothing. I sat and thought about her. "Lance? Have you any visual records of my daughter naked?"
"Display those you feel would not violate her privacy. Full- scale holographs. No audio." The image resolved besides me, laughing. She seemed to be throwing something, then wandered through the apartment. I watched, feeling safe, then said "Ditch it, Lance. That's enough."
The image vanished, and I returned back to my work.
Eight hours later I had almost dug my way through the entire collection when there came a knock at the door. "Come!" I shouted. The door opened.
"Shardik!" Alex said as he wandered in. "So this is your home?"
"This is it," I said. "So you came along."
"Da, Ken." He walked to the chair next to mine and sat down. "I trust you are well? Are you here with your mates?"
"Just my daughter, Sheja. Have you met her?"
"Nyet," he replied. "I should like to meet your child, however. But this is not a social call. I have come to ask you a serious question." I waited for him to speak, and finally he continued, "I am concerned that the last grasp we have of what we call human identity is going to vanish soon. I felt I should come to you and talk about this."
I turned to him, puzzled. "Alex, what are you talking about?"
Alex leaned back and folded his hands in his lap. "In the beginning, man believed he was the center of the universe. Copernicus took that away from him. Man believed he was made of solid matter. Neils Bohr took that away from him. Man believed he was the sole proprietor of sentience in the Universe and you first took that away from him. Man believed he knew where he came from, and Isadore Saman took that away from him. Now, someday soon I feel that man will not know what he looks like."
"You're talking about the polymorphism revolution that's been in the press for the past century or so."
"Da," he nodded. "I was reading the book, The Shape of the Body, with your essay in it. Do you feel concerned?"
"There is no way to stuff a genie back into the bottle. Look at how your government tried to suppress the fusion catalytic configuration back in the first century. That's a basic result of the laws of physics, Alex. We can't hide it."
"I know, I know. I am simply wondering if you feel any necessity to reach people before some forget what they look like forever. Soon, Ken, transsexualism and transspecism will become so convincing that it will be impossible to reconstruct what that person was before the operation."
I nodded. "Alex..." I sighed, my mind racing forward at high speed. "There will be no preserves of people who want polymorphism and can't have it. You will end up with people who want it and can't handle it, and people who don't want it and can handle it, along with the ones who work with it successfully and those who avoid it intelligently." I shook my head. "I'm not going to be one of the shapechangers, I'll tell you that."
"We are our planet's greatest geneticists, Ken," Alex said. I didn't argue; both Alex and I were among the best, and in other moods we spoke the same language still. "Do you feel we will be obsolete, soon?"
I shook my head. "Alex, we will always be men of talent and we will always be needed."
"I am afraid," he admitted to me.
"I am too," I said. "But there's not much I can do except try my best to convince people to use technology responsibly. It's like the nuclear destruction of Los Angeles in 2006. There's nothing you can do about the technology; the science is there and is understood. Anyone can make a nuclear bomb, or a killer germ. It's amazing more people haven't."
He nodded. "I would like--" The door opened, interrupting him.
Sheja walked in. "Hi, Dad. I'm home! Who's this?"
"Alex, I would like you to meet Sheja Satpulov, my daughter." He held out his hand and she shook it carefully.
"I am pleased to meet you, young lady."
"Likewise," she said. "You're Alex Paleovitch?"
He nodded. "You've heard of me. I am pleased. I will leave you alone with your father." He stood up. "Good day, Ken."
"Good day, Alex. Enjoy the trip." He left as cryptically as he entered, the issue unanswered and leaving me feeling confused. "There goes a very strange man."
Sheja stood in front of the SDisk and placed her hand on her jaw, thinking. Finally she turned and said, "Dad, have you eaten yet?"
Reminded of food, my stomach leapt to attention. "Not yet," I admitted.
"Let's go." She grabbed my hand and tried to haul me out of my chair. I allowed her to pull me to my feet and led me out the door.
"Where are we going?"
"Forward lounge," she said.
I sighed. "Sheja, beloved. Why are you trying to set me up with Dao?"
She let go of my hand and turned around. "Is it that obvious?"
"You've mentioned it a couple of times," I laughed. "Listen, sweetheart, I appreciate the effort, but I'll get into Dao's grip at my own pace." I thought about it for a moment. "And now might be a good time to set the pace. Okay, Sheja, lead on."
She bounced down the hallway and I had to run a little quicker to follow her. Finally, we reached the lounge and the door opened. She looked back and forth and finally pointed. "There he is."
I followed her finger and spotted Dao. He was lying on a 'taur bench, leaning over a table and stirring a tall glass of something. He did not look all that happy. I walked over to him. "Can I sit here?"
"Sure," he said. A quick sniff of the air revealed that he was drinking just tea. At least I wouldn't have to deal with him drunk. "I'm glad to see you."
"Has my daughter been bothering you as much as she has me?"
He shook his head. "I haven't noticed."
"Dao? What's wrong?"
He straightened up and stretched. "Tonni. I'm feeling a little left out these days. Between Aaden and Noah, your family has occupied his time more than I have in the past couple of weeks."
I kept my tongue still before going on, since Aaden had been complaining that Tonni wanted more of his time than he was willing to give. I thought about how beautiful I found Dao, how much I wanted to hold his quasi-lynxine white fur and curious orange eyes. I think what bothered me was this mel, fully adult and quite old, struck me as boyish. "Dao, would you like to spend this trip with me?"
He looked up. "What?"
"Last night I was really too tired to notice, but my bed is big and it is lonely. I think my daughter is trying to avoid hearing me complain about that." I didn't add that she might be trying to put out the fire in my heart that encouraged me to stare at her. But this tactic wouldn't work. Beauty is something hard to ignore. Maybe Dao would exhaust me. "Would you like to help fill my bed?"
He thought about it for a few seconds. Finally I said, "Something wrong?"
"I don't know what to say."
He grinned. Then he laughed. "Okay, 'Yes' it is. Can I ask why?"
"Honestly? You're beauty. I found myself staring at you, wondering when I would have the chance to hold you. You're obviously competent, and I respect that intelligence. But I find myself wanting to make love to you because you are so very handsome."
"Ken," he said, "I accept." He stood up.
"Wait, wait!" I said. "I've been working all day without food. Can I get something into my stomach first?"
"Oh," he grinned. "Sure."
I looked around the lounge and saw Sheja sitting at the bar, drinking something through a straw. I waved her over and she joined us. "So, did you guys talk?"
"Yes, we talked. Meet out new roommate."
"Really?" she asked. "Solar!" She hugged Dao. "You'll like him. He's really gentle."
"How would you know?" I asked.
"I asked Mom," she said. I shook my head. Dealing with this little bundle of moxie was beginning to look more and more like a good idea. "Anyway, let's eat." She flipped open the menu door on the table and punched buttons really fast. "I got used to punching my favorites."
I picked my menu and Dao did too. A few minutes later we were served our meals; for me, a sort of strange, pasta salad with red peppers. Dao got something smothered in curry, and Sheja ordered plaka, a llerkin sandwich mix. I could never enjoy it myself, but there were other llerkin meals I loved that my family couldn't stand.
After dinner, I stood up and stretched. "I'm ready for bed."
"Again?" Sheja asked. "You've only been awake for ten hours!"
"My schedule is entirely out of whack," I growled. "Dao?"
He nodded. "I'm tired myself. I have to stop by my room and get my luggage, however."
"I'll meet you at my place," I said. He left, looking a little happier. I stood up to go when Sheja grabbed my sleeve. "Hold on a sec, Dad."
I sat down again. She took a deep breath and said, "I talked with Mom before we left." Uh-oh. "And I wanna apologize."
Now I was puzzled. "Apologize?" I asked. "What for?"
"Teasing you. I think maybe someday I'll try and sleep with you, but..." She shrugged. "I know you don't want to, but I've been trying to tease you into saying something."
Well, this has taken an interesting turn, I thought. "If I had invited you instead of Dao, what would you have said?"
"You wouldn't have," she said. "Mom knows you too well, and I think so do I."
"But if I had?"
"I probably would have said yes. But I don't know what I would'da done afterwards."
I smiled, reached out and ruffled her headfur. "Sheja, you're one of the most wonderful joys in a father's heart. Grow up, but don't change."
She nodded. "I'll do my best. Hey, you better get going. Your boyfriend is probably standing outside your door, waiting for you."
When I got back to my room, Dao had not yet arrived. I picked up a few things and began putting them away when he knocked on the door. I opened the door myself. He stood there with a small, white bag over his shoulder, and I pulled him into the room, threw my arms around him and kissed him, hard.
He seemed surprised at first, then eased into the kiss, enjoying it apparently. "What was that for?"
"Just to show you how much I appreciate you're accepting my offer. I really needed someone to keep me company or I would have just gone crazy."
He smiled. "I never imagined you needing someone."
"Dao, I'm just a guy."
"You're also the creator of all Pendor," he pointed out. "I'm a little nervous being offered a bed by God."
I scowled. "Sorry, I know you don't like that," he said. "It's just hard to get out of my head when I look at you. Everyone expects you to be perfect, to be something supernatural."
"The only thing super about me is my ordinariness these days." I grinned and said, "The bedroom's over there, and the bathroom right there. We're sharing it with a twelve-year-old girl, so I hope you won't be too surprised by some of the little knicknaks lying around."
"I think I can handle it."
My eyes were about to fall out of their sockets on their own accord, and I decided that it was well past my bedtime. "I'm heading into bed," I sighed. "Are you ready for bed yourself?"
"More than you, probably," he yawned.
"Then let's make it official." We walked into the bedroom and I dropped my clothes onto the floor casually. He took his uniform shirt off and dropped it on the floor as well, then picked up the covers on his side of the bed, and crawled in next to me.
I slid up next to him, carefully pushing his paw out of the way. I brushed up against his chest and touched his cheek with the back of my hand. "Dao?"
"Huh?" he said, lifting his head.
"Oh," he whispered. "G'night, Ken."
In the morning, I first became aware of a soft, rumbling noise to my right. It had been long enough since I had last slept with a feline that it took me a few seconds to recognize it. I opened my eyes and smiled. He was lying completely on his back; his shoulders had fallen back in their sockets as they do and he was effectively a furry puddle under the covers. I looked over at the clock. Nine hours had gone by and I figured it was safe to wake him. Lying on his back, he was a perfect target. I slipped under the covers and crawled towards him.
I realized this might be a little dangerous. Dao had never struck me as the violent kind and I hoped he didn't startle too much. But the temptation of his body lying there was more than I could bear. I slipped up to his side and placed my hands on his side, caressing his fur gently. A slight change in the pitch of his purring warned me that he was aware of my presence, but there was no other motion on his part. I slipped up along his belly, supporting myself on my right arm, until I reached his furry sheath.
He was big, but that's expected of Ssphynxes. They're supposed to be big. I ran my hand along that beautiful sheath, stroking the fur gently and brushing it back. His cock twitched slightly. I smiled. His cock knew I was here, even if he didn't. I watched with anticipation as the tip expanded slightly and the pale, yellowish tip of his cock appeared. It took every little bit of self control to keep from pulling the sheath back hard and gobbling that cock down my throat. The head slid out of the sheath and I reached out with my tongue to taste it.
The smell and taste of his cock carried all of the familiar, youthful sweat and musk of a sleeping feline. The sweat of the night before had collected behind his surprisingly prominent head and licking it up made my own cock stiff. There are a few bodily fluids I haven't tasted, but not many, and of those I have tasted, there aren't many I dislike. The idea of taking into my body the creation of someone else's body turns me on a lot.
As his cock extended a little further, I took the head into my mouth-- an act that required I really open my mouth wide. Almost instantly, a complaining ache awoke at the hinge of my jaw. And as the head slid against the top of my mouth, I slid down further and felt the sweet mass of his cock against my tongue. It was everything I could do to keep my teeth from scraping. I pressed it back against my throat and realized I wasn't going to be able to take it down. There are ligaments and rigid structures in my throat that I would never be able to stretch enough to take something as large as his cock. But I wasn't going to not try!
As I slid my head back and forth on his cock, the side of my face brushing against his bellyfur, the purring of his voice changed in timbre, and then seemed to break up and fade. "Oh, it's you..." he moaned. "I was having this wonderful dream."
"You still are," I gasped. "Do me a favor and tell me how you like it."
"I will," he sighed. I slipped my mouth back around his gorgeous shaft and kept sucking on him, sliding it back and forth within the limits of my mouth. I grabbed the rest of his cock in my left hand and stroked it slowly in countertempo to my mouth, trying to keep him going. He groaned loudly. "Ken, I don't need to give you advice."
His paws twitched in the air as I ran my tongue around the head. A slow leak of semen appeared at the tip and I licked at it, sliding the fluid to the top of my mouth and spread it across my tongue. Then I rammed his cock down to the back of my throat. "Ken..." he warned, "close..."
I didn't change my pace; I wanted to keep whatever was getting him close to keep him getting closer. He moaned softly, and the volume of his moan grew until he suddenly went silent, his paws twitching in the air as he came, his body going solid. When he came a big shot of semen hit the back of my throat, and I nearly came myself from the taste of catcome. Three or four pulses of semen filled my mouth as I slid off his cock, and then one more struck me on my lips. I licked it up with my tongue as well, then closed my eyes to enjoy the salty taste and thin, gooey texture of his come before I swallowed it all down.
I raised my head and smiled at him, then crawled up into his arms and hugged him close. "Hey, my pleasure," I said. "You were just too tempting a morsel to pass up, lying there like that. I hope you don't mind me waking you up."
"Not like that," he gasped. "Not like that. I need to clean up..."
"Not really," I said, puzzled. "I swallowed most of it."
"You... you did?"
"Well, yeah," I said. "Usually, I love swallowing come."
"Wow," he said. "Thanks."
"Like I said, my pleasure. Still... Lance, what's on my schedule for today?"
"Neither of you are actually assigned to any duty. However, Ken, Etta has requested that you contact Tonpili down in education. He has need of tutors in mathematics and biology."
"What age groups?"
I sighed. Some age groups I love working with, others I just can't stand. Except in my own kids, for some reason. I love them no matter how old they are. "Sure thing, Lance."
"Most mathematics and biology students are older than seven, Ken."
I nodded. "I know. What about Dao?"
"As I said, no current assignments. However, there is a voluntary staff meeting of all onboard planetologists at three."
Dao checked the clock. "I'll be there."
I crawled out of bed and stretched. "Another day... " I groaned. "And a great breakfast."
Dao blushed and turned over onto his belly, padding his way off the bed and onto the floor. "Thank you. I hope I can repay you."
"Repay me?" I said. "Dao, I adored that. Tonight, you can repay me by fucking me."
Dao looked surprised. "I'll have to... think about that."
"Then think. Now come on. I need some carbohydrates to go with my protein."