Chapter 5


Trenae stood by Jenny’s front door. What a difference the daytime sun and bright blue sky made compared to her last visit, during the dark of night. Positive, happy breezes floated over the entire city of Boise, this Saturday, February 24th. Unseasonably mild temperatures and lack of precipitation helped too, but mostly the sun delivered the good tidings. But she would have come snow, rain, or shine.

She lifted her wrist. The watch beneath her leather jacket displayed 10:20. She was a little early. Regardless she would have to knock on the door. After all, where else could she go now? The taxi had left.

Lifting her right fist, she tapped on the door. An immediate response didn’t happen, like the last time, on Tuesday night. She tried again, this time with a harder rap. Footsteps pounding down stairs came from within the house. Then, the door opened.

“Oh…sorry,” Jenny said, between winded breaths.  

“No, that’s okay,” Trenae said sweetly. “I’m a little early anyway.”

Jenny opened the door wider. “No problem. Come on in, take your jacket off. I need to find my recorder and pad. Won’t take too long.”

Complying, Trenae stepped inside, removed her black leather jacket, and placed it once more on the nearby red sofa chair, near the door. Jenny ran back upstairs.

With Jenny gone, Trenae felt it best to walk over to the blue and white sofa and sit down. But once seated, she heard Jenny’s footsteps rumble down the stairs again.

Soon, Jenny plopped down into the same red sofa chair as the last time. The familiar mini recorder and note pad was ready to go. She turned the recorder on and gave a brief description of the interview.

“There’s something I want to ask you, before I forget,” Jenny said.

“What is that?”

“Well, you mentioned that the alien guy, Ra’am, had a bathroom. And you used it, right?”

“Yes, I did.”

“I am just dieing to hear about it. A bathroom…from another planet, you know?”

“I know what you mean. I was wondering the same thing.” Trenae smiled a little, though sensing disbelief from Jenny. “That night, after he left me alone in the room, I did manage to get to the bathroom cylinder, one of those galeel khayeh. I didn’t take a shower or anything, but I did use the toilet. The first thing I noticed, right away, was white everywhere, instead of that green color. And then, I noticed it appeared somewhat similar to any bathroom here on earth.”


“Yeah, well…I felt surprised but, I figured it wouldn’t be too different, after considering that we’re basically the same body type. When I first walked in, you could see a type of sink and toilet on the left- they were somehow connected, sort of spiral, like a spiral staircase, with a central bar from ceiling to floor connecting both the sink to the toilet, only the toilet was lower, like a step down and around.” Trenae used her hands as times before, to place objects in her description. “Their material seemed to be the same similar stuff like the rest of Ha-Ta, just a different color.

“And on the right wall, there was a white, small seat jutting out of this mirror wall. The mirror just seemed to be part of the wall, not separate.”

“Hmm, a mirror.”

“Yes. But the really neat thing, was the sink had this small, strange, white tower, sort of like a canopy, except made of the same stuff like everything else, that allowed you to put your hands under it, kind of like a flattened out teepee with one side removed, so--”

“Don’t tell me. When you put your hands under it, the water turned on, right?”

More disbelief emanated from Jenny. Trenae ignored it. She had to. “Actually, yes, that’s true. There weren’t any faucets, if that’s what you mean.”

“Well, at least we’ve caught up to their technology in one way!” Jenny smiled briefly.  “You know those bathrooms, with the faucets that go on automatically?”

“Yeah, I know,” Trenae said, smiling too, “at mall or convenience store bathrooms. They never give you enough water, ya know?”

“Really! Did Ra’am’s?”

“Yes, fortunately, it did. The toilet didn’t have water in it, though. It had a very similar set up, seat and all, like our toilets, although it had no toilet seat or lid you could lift up. It was just very wide, a large oval, and had soft cushioning around the perimeter. But when you used it, something in the basin just absorb or removed the contents. There was no visible drain hole. It was weird…”

“Hmm, interesting.”

“Actually, the garbage receptacle, called a peshokh lo n’rah- there was one in the eyzkher mazon, eyzkher tagleet, and bathroom or other cylinder rooms, would do the same, only disappearing garbage, instead of water. Ra’am said there were certain kleeproodah systems which took both water and garbage, other biological refuse, and used what it could from these things for more energy in the ma’argahar, or else just broke the stuff down and evaporated it, made it disappear. The same with the sink and shower, although both had a drain hole, where the drain water collected underneath, some container system, and got taken care of.”

“Interesting,” Jenny said. Then she asked for spelling of peshokh lo n’rah and wrote down the new word.

“But, the bathroom,” Trenae continued. “In the corner of the bathroom, next to the seat thing, was this triangular shaped shower area, very similar to a regular shower. Water came out of a white object, in the far corner, similar in shape to the sink, and up high, like our showers. When I touched this orah button nearby, running my fingers around it in a circular motion, the white shower object could lengthen, grow, widen, whatever you wanted, to get more water on you.”


“Yeah, true. Another orah button controlled these two sliding doors to come out of both sides of the walls, on each corner end, like two curtains, although it didn’t touch the ceiling, so you could see someone’s head in the shower, if they’re tall, like an ometvah. The doors could either be transparent, or solid, depending on how you touched the button. But it was the same stuff as the other doors, with that melding, disappearing quality.”

“So, you had some fun in there, sort of playing around with the controls?”

Jenny appeared skeptical and amused, but Trenae felt serious. That moment alone in the alien’s bathroom was not funny. “No, I didn’t. I just felt worried, so I had to check things a bit, make sure nothing was really dangerous or, I don’t know...”

“Oh, I see, I’m sorry. So, go ahead.”

“Well, next to the shower, on the other side, not by the seat, there appeared to be a small oval doorway, because it looked depressed inward, though it was white like the rest of the bathroom. Once the door opened, you could put your clothes in, to get both washed and dried in one container, done in a minute or two. Cool, huh?”

“That is cool…Speaking of cool, was the water in the sink heated?”

“I didn’t dare use the shower that night. I just used the toilet thing and then washed my hands, in that sink. But yes, the water actually felt warm, perfect, not too cold, not too hot.”

“And one more curious question,” Jenny said, with a smile. “Was there any toilet paper?”

 “That’s a good question!” Trenae smiled too, briefly. “And yes, there was one roll in there, on that seat by the mirrored wall. Ra’am told me it was for me, courtesy of Dod again. I asked him that before I used the bathroom, when he sat by the control panel. He told me the details about the peshokh lo n’rah then, and about the shower, the washer-dryer thing, other bathroom details.”

“Oh. I was gonna say, you did seem to be telling details you hadn’t learned yet. So, after you used the bathroom, you went to bed?”

“Yes. I changed my clothes, took off that uncomfortable dress…” Trenae looked closely in Jenny’s face. “You know, I still remember, how I had a deep red impression above my breasts from that dress’s elastic, from wearing it so long. You know?”

“Ouch! Sure.”

“Yeah, tell me about it. But anyway, I put my clothes on the floor, in a corner of my room.”

“Hey, I just thought of something.” Jenny developed a curious expression. “What about your purse?”

“Well, remember, I never took it with me, when I left that car. And then they found it.”

“Oh yeah, I’m sorry. I remember, those jerks found it and mentioned it, when Ra’am showed you that encircling screen thing.”

“Yes, that’s right. So anyway, I was still very, very concerned about Ra’am, like he was going to try something on me.”

“Like…rape or molest?” Jenny asked softly.

“Yes, exactly.” She stared at Jenny closely again. “Concerned is not the word. I was terrified of him, even thought he hadn’t hurt me yet, and L.B. liked him. It’s just that…well, everything felt so new, bizarre and weird. Scary. So when I put on the jogging suit, I made sure that I tucked in the shirt part, into the pants, in such a way that all the wrinkles were in the front, and flat and wrinkle-less in the back, so I could tell if someone messed with me, without me knowing, like during the night. Do you know what I mean?”

“Yes, good idea. Where did you come up with that one?”

“When I used to work at the pharmacy, in Idaho City, sometimes I was invited to these parties. And quite a few times, I would get so drunk, I wasn’t sure if some of the guys took advantage of me. So, since it was hard for me to control my drinking, I just did that trick, before I got really wasted. It seemed to work, I guess. My shirt was always tucked in the same, so no one ever did anything, then, anyway...”

Jenny gave a strange, skeptical glance. Again, Trenae felt mistrusted. Maybe she shouldn’t have mentioned the true extent of her drinking problem.

“Well, so,” Jenny said, her tone a little condescending, “did you fall asleep, feel comfortable finally?”

Even so, Trenae had to tell this, regardless of Jenny’s skepticism. “I did, but first some other things happened.” Similar to before, at the last interview, she fell into the scenes of her memories…



…When Trenae came back to her new room, L.B. continued to sleep in the corner, although no longer in a curled ball. Instead, he lay on his stomach, with his head resting upon his front paws. After she had placed her clothes in the corner, she tiptoed over to the Golden Retriever and quietly knelt down besides him. So desperately did she need to touch an earth being now. More importantly, though she didn’t want to admit it to herself, she needed to prove to herself that L.B. truly was a dog, from earth, and not some strange cyborg or abnormal, freakish genetic mutation. Or worse. Since Ra’am wasn’t nearby, she could take full advantage of the moment, to positively affirm or deny her uncomfortable contentions without his influence.

She grazed her fingertips across his long, wavy fur, first starting near L.B.’s neck, and then down toward his back. Then she placed her whole hand on his fur, and stroked him carefully, delicately. His breathing seemed normal. She gently laid her ear against one side of his chest and listened for his heartbeat. This again, sounded as normal as she could remember, from the years long ago when she had a dog. She began to caress and squeeze L.B.’s body parts, like his legs and shoulders. These too seemed normal, both in their warm body temperature and in their consistency and form. All her senses undeniably pointed toward a true, real earthling animal. Everything seemed reasonable.  

L.B. finally succumbed to her gentle, yet prying touches. He awoke and eagerly looked at her face, licking her hands. At that moment, Trenae realized what a handsome dog was L.B., and how friendly and loving likewise. She embraced him around the neck and shoulders, hugging him for a moment. “I don’t know what I’d do without you now,” she said quietly, tears welling in her eyes. Her eyes felt sore and unusual from crying so much. Yet it wasn’t entirely unusual. Many times in the past months the same had occurred.

“Come here, boy,” she whispered, not wanting Ra’am to hear. She stood up and stepped toward the bed. “Come on, come on, over here.”  If he could just lay on the floor, by my bed.

The playful dog responded to her requests, leaping up, wagging his tail, and hopping over to her. Trenae sat on the bed and held his head in her hands, petting and hugging him further.

Shoot, she thought. I didn’t make my bed yet! Standing up, she turned and lifted the blankets and pillows. “Stay, now you stay there, while I do this.” She looked down at his cute face. Remarkably, L.B. listened. He sat on the floor.

She laid one of the blankets down, as Ra’am had suggested, and neatly laid the other two on top, for the covers. While laying down the blankets, she noticed the bed appeared much longer than any twin size or even queen size mattress on earth, probably due to the average great height of an ometvah. However, its width appeared only a little wider than a twin bed.

L.B. sat patiently, watching her, his mouth open, tongue panting, so typical of a domestic canine.

After she had placed the pillows on the bed, at the end closest to the ma’argahar wall and within sight of the doorway, she carefully climbed into bed. L.B. continued to sit there, tongue panting, giving an occasional paw to her. Lifting her hand up, near the wall, she touched the orah button near the bed, lowering the amount of light in the room. She petted L.B.’s head a few more times and the rascally dog finally decided to lie down. Slowly, quietly, so as not to disturb him, she wobbled herself to the edge of the bed and looked down below at him. He was lying on the floor in the same manner as when she had checked his body earlier; he appeared to be falling asleep.

 Trenae realized she felt cold. She was trembling, too. Actually, her body began rattling like an earthquake. Take deep breaths, relax, she told herself. But in the horrifying emptiness and solitude of the moment, when she realized all people had to face their problems and demons of the day straight on, as it was the end of the day and the time when night and darkness surrounded the body and mind, she couldn’t control the shaking. Even her teeth clattered together. She closed her eyes and tried to think of positive, humorous scenes or events. But the coldness of her body would not allow it. She tried to curl tightly into a ball, releasing her hand from the bed’s side, near L.B. Later on, she hoped to place her hand on L.B.’s back, as he slept soundly. But for now, she moved closer to the wall, wrapping the blankets tightly around her body.

Finally, with the blankets coiling as a cocoon, Trenae felt warmer. Her shaking decreased. Yet just as her teeth started clattering less, the enormous magnitude of her situation and the eerie location of where she lay resting slammed into her consciousness instead. She lay on a bed, on an alien ship, surrounded by micro-robots, with no way to escape! And worse, a giant, frightening alien being, who seemed to have ulterior motives on his mind, could arrive in her room at any moment! Relax, relax…please. Breathe deeply, stay calm. Staying calm is the only way to manage this, she repeated in her mind.

Miraculously, she finally felt sleep approaching. The anxiety of her mind could not compete with the tiredness of her body. Sleep would have to arrive soon to her weary body. Yet before she fell asleep, she wondered about Ra’am’s statement, that God had created him. Was it some sort of sick joke, or just some devious way to deceive her? It was her last conscious thought.    


“STOP! Help me!” Trenae yelled. She snapped upright, sitting. A violent, terrifying dream jolted her awake. Her heart pounded, her breathing puffed shallow and difficult. Was she having a heart attack? She threw the covers off and sat on the side of the bed. L.B. was gone.

She stood up. The horrible memories of the dream would not leave her alone, only complicating her physical problems. In her dream, Stiles and Willson, even Traferro and Finley, were burying her alive, in a deep hole. But worst of all, Ra’am had arrived too, up above, his tall presence suddenly darting out of no where. He joined, laughed with, and helped the men throw massive clumps of dirt on top of her head and body. The dirt felt so heavy, stinging, slamming her skin painfully as it fell. She could see the dirt fall all around her, piling up the hole, reaching her shoulders, her neck, then her head. No escape, just like the alien dungeon that now trapped her!

I have to get out of here, climb to the surface, right away! The risks from Stiles simply didn’t seem as dangerous as the risks from the unknown, on this spacecraft.      

She walked to the doorway. Something seemed different; the light was dimmer than earlier, when she had gone to bed, making the rounded, curved corridor appear even more sinister than earlier. Her body shaking again, Trenae clasped her yellow shirt, just over her heart, and tried to slow her breathing, relax her crazed heart. But her heart raced faster than the night before, racing like wild. She staggered in the direction toward the control panel, carefully edging her way past the dark and eerie laboratory room.

But as she shortened the distance between herself and the control panel, she could see a welcoming scene of the earth above, on the khalon. A view of the night sky, speckled by stars, brightened ever so slightly by an orange-pink glow as from a possible nearby town, loomed high above an open area, a field. The scene welcomed, reassured. But then a horrifying thought occurred- she wasn’t by River Cliffs! She knew that area, she knew it well. And this open field was far too broad to be the clearing before the cliff. Where am I now?

Once arriving, she rested one of her arms on a chair in front of the control panel. She continued clasping her shirt, trying to breathe normally, finally tapering her heart rate a little. But it looked so dark on the spacecraft, save for the light of the control panel, the shleetah maksheer, with its hundreds of lights illuminating some brightness. Their strange-patterned glow reminded again of her foreign, alien location. She leaned over, exhausted, shaking. Though she hoped to find a button opening the delet tekrah, the ceiling doorway, far too many buttons occupied the panel. One small touch of the wrong control button, and I’ll a start some type of nuclear explosion!

“No, no, what am I doing here,” she whispered. “Oh God, please help me.”

Yet she really wanted to scream, scream like a deranged lunatic. She lifted her head, taking a glance at the khalon again. Then she hung her head down and continued clasping her shirt.

“Trenae, are you all right?”

That voice! She startled and jerked upright. She turned left, from whence the voice came, by the evesmol.

Ha-Ta’s lighting suddenly became brighter. Now she could see clearly. Ra’am had been lying on that seat, with some blankets. He should have been in his room!

Ra’am stood up from the evesmol and started walking toward her, still wearing the black shirt and blue jeans he had on earlier. His thick hair strands hung loosely around his head, at shoulder length, obviously not tied back, making him appear even more daunting and formidable than before.

Without even thinking, Trenae started backing away, toward the curved wall to her right.

“You are not all right, are you?” Ra’am said. His low, thundering words broke the air. “But, we will solve this now.” He continued walking toward her, taking slow, deliberate steps.

His words wounded menacingly. Continuing to move backwards, Trenae’s back found the wall. Trapped. She removed her hand from her shirt and placed both palms on the strange, malleable surface of Ha-Ta, by her sides. “Please, just leave me alone,” she said weakly. “I can’t, I can’t …” Though tears tried to flow, having cried so much, their source was dry. Her eyes hurt, yet she watched Ra’am with an eagle’s stare.

“You can’t what?” he asked defiantly, his voice threatening. “You do not know what you need, a woman of your fragility. Did you truly believe you could make it through the night alone?”

“I had L.B. Where is he? Where did you p-p-put him?” She locked her eyes on his every motion. Her trust for him evaporated.

“L.B. is fine. Sometimes I must keep him in my room, if he is uncontrollable or energetic, as he was later this night. Yes, he did sleep by you, but then he left. He could not comfort your negative thoughts, though you believed he could.” Inch by inch, foot by foot, Ra’am drew forward, devouring the distance between them.

“No, I didn’t,” she mumbled. “Please, can I leave?”
            “Now? In the night? Are you this suicidal?”

“But…but we’re not by the cliff. I…I don’t even know, wh-where we are. Where are we?”

“1.8 miles away from the location I acquired you. We traveled, when I first held you earlier today, to my current location.”

“What?” she whispered. No! She hadn’t felt any motion!

“I never stay in one area for long,” he said, still walking toward her, closer, closer. “My parameters cover a 40 mile radius, in particular the Tolo Lake area.”

“No…you…” she said weakly. Unfortunately, her tears had found a passage; thin liquid streams poured down her face. She trembled more. “No, this can’t be, it can’t…”

He arrived. Ra’am now towered over her, several feet away. He lowered himself, balancing himself on bended knees. Right away, she noticed his boots were gone. His feet were covered in socks, yet seemed human-like.

“Trenae, look at me.” She looked into his black eyes. “You need to sleep with me tonight, just for tonight, to adjust to the new environment. I will hold you close, and calm your heart and breathing rate. I will not hurt you.”

She brought her hands to her mouth, covering her lips. Rapid gusts of air whizzed between her fingers. She could barely speak. Fortunately, Ra’am looked less frightening right now. She removed her hands a little. “I’m, I’m not…w-w-worried about you hurting me.”

“Then what is wrong?” His expression demanded an answer.

“I can’t, I can’t s-s-say.”

“Then I will carry you to my bed.”

What? Shock cut through Trenae. She had to do something. Images of Stiles and Willson, and what they had done to her repeatedly, came rushing back from her memories. If this guy has what I think he has between his legs, then maybe a good kick will stop him! She took a deep breath, and without considering any consequences, exploded her right foot forward, toward his supposed genitals. There, take that!

Swack! Not even in an eye blink, Ra’am seized her leg, just above the ankle. She hadn’t even see his motion! His large, powerful hand now completely engulfed her lower calf.

“Did you honestly think you could overpower me?” he demanded, his deep voice angered.

Now she did it. It became her final undoing. Her heart raced even more, Ra’am’s grip causing her pulse to thump against his hand. She had defied him. And the incredible speed of this being shocked her mind; he was truly invincible. She couldn’t fight him anymore.

Defeated, she covered her face with her hands and began crumbling at the knees, weakened by fear. “I’m so scared, I’m so scared.” Ra’am released his hand, finger by finger from her leg. “No, no, this can’t, this can’t be,” she mumbled through her hands. She began to sink down, her shirt rubbing against the wall behind her, lifting it a little. But it didn’t matter now.

Trenae felt the inevitable. After raising himself from the floor, Ra’am slid his right arm, the arm with the powerful and lethal koaksekhel, around the back of her waist. She felt its odd, metallic surface press against her skin, from under her shirt. His other arm wrapped around the back of her thighs. He lifted her effortlessly.

He began walking with her, holding her securely, yet gently, his grasp not hurting.

With her hands still covering her face, Trenae became forced to rest her hands and face on his shoulder. But this quickly became uncomfortable. She removed her hands from her face and reluctantly, yet out of necessity, placed each hand on his shoulders, then laying her face on his right shoulder. She could feel the great broadness of his shoulders, and his thick hair strands brushed against her head. She could feel the wire-like power of his tendons and muscles cutting against her, with his motion, his every step. Even though he had yet showed no desire to inflict injury upon her, while carrying her toward the evesmol, she realized her life now lay completely in his hands.

“I’m so scared, I’m so scared,” she said, keeping her eyes closed, holding on to him. “Please, Ra’am, please.” His strange body and scent reminded her again and again that he was not human.

Ra’am didn’t respond to her frightened words.

Although with her eyes shut she couldn’t see their direction, she soon felt him stop. He must be right in front of the evesmol! Expecting him to place her down, she instead felt him hold her tighter. He lifted her up a little, and then brought her down. She opened her eyes. Immediately Trenae could see he was lying her down on the bed with him, at the same time not releasing her. Time slowed down.

And then, she was on his bed, her head just above a pillow and his left forearm. His other arm secured around her waist and stomach area. He supported himself upright, using his left arm and elbow as a right-angled brace. 

Trenae darted her frightened eyes toward his face, his face so close now. “Please, I can’t do this,” she said, trembling. “Don’t do this, please don’t do this, please, please Ra’am, don’t do this…” Her breath ran out. Her voice became a faint whisper. 

Ra’am removed his right hand from her waist and gently began stroking her hair, by her head’s left side. Staring into the alien’s dark, dagger-like eyes, she lifted her trembling hand and touched his right hand, while in motion stroking her. But then she removed her hand, bringing it back down, realizing she may upset him again.

“I assure you,” he said calmly, continuing to stroke her hair, “I will not hurt you.”

“I know.” She swallowed. “I know…you will not hurt me. That’s not wh-what I’m worried about. You have to know what I mean.” Her voice pleaded for an answer.

He casually gazed his eyes downward, away from her face, toward her breasts and waist, ignoring her question. Trenae felt her mind leave her body, just as it happened many times with Willson and Stiles. No longer was she a participant, but an observer.

“No, tell me,” Ra’am said passionately. “Tell me what you mean.” He looked back into her eyes.

All her individual terror reactions crashed together. As she felt herself floating, flying away, she unfortunately developed an uncontrollable desire to burry her face into Ra’am’s chest and embrace him madly. But this would only intensify his apparent passion and desire for her! Yet maybe it would help him to be easier on her. Yet then his self-control, if any existed, would be gone, and maybe her self control as well! Remember, he’s not human, he’s not human!

Answer his question, Trenae. She took a deep breath and closed her eyes. Her mind displayed herself rattling against Ra’am’s body, from a distance.  “Stiles...and, and some of those, of those oth- other guys…” She opened her eyes. She had to make him understand. “They ra-raped me, repeatedly, and hurt me, m-many times, made me d-do things…please…I can’t, I’m so scared, please, please…” Her voice trailed off into silence.

Though fragile as a wounded lamb, she watched him closely, from both her eye’s view and her outer body view. Ra’am eyes quickly became sharp, fierce-looking slits, as he removed his hand from her hair. She noticed his right hand form into a taut, clenched fist. No, he’s going to punch me! She squeezed her eyes shut.

A warm hand pressed gently on her stomach. She opened her eyes. Eerily, his expression appeared as before, calm yet ardent. Then why did he make a fist? She quietly panicked within.

After a moment, Ra’am lifted his hand from her stomach, placed it near the right pocket of his jeans, and reached within, pulling out a folded tissue. He brought the tissue toward her face and began wiping, blotting the tears away, very gently, around her eyes and cheeks. Again, she closed her eyes. Though his action caused her to relax more, she struggled internally just the same, trying to determine what would come next.

He finished. She looked at him again. He had laid his hand on his right side, the tissue gone. “Trenae, I told you before, in your room. I only wanted to hold you close tonight, and apply negee’ah ragoo’a, so your heart and breathing rates can decrease.”

“Apply, wh-what?” she asked. Her mind had returned to her body completely now, forcing her racing heart, rapid breathing, and rattling body to register brutally.

“Negee’ah ragoo’a, the calming touch, which I touched your abdomen with earlier today, when I first brought you here.” His deep voice, his face so close- those dark lines, those dark eyes, those odd hair strands, like black snakes falling by his face! “At least you will be able to sleep. And no, I will not remove your clothes. Is that all right?”

Trenae searched his face for emotion, wiping her eyes with her shaking fingers. Passion remained, but he also had, though she could not pin point it exactly, a gentle honesty and patience that maybe, just maybe, she could grasp hold of somehow. There, in that part of Ra’am’s demeanor, she would be safe. She inhaled and stammered, “I…I guess s-s-so.”

“I do not smell offensive to you, do I?” Humor and curiosity colored his words.

Though wanting to smile, her tired face wouldn’t allow it. Heck, she could barely speak, especially with her body still rattling. “No…not, not at all.”

“Then I will cover us now,” he said.

Ra’am reached his arm behind his back, to where the crumpled up blanket must lay. No, wait! That powerful koaksekhel is still on his arm! The thought of having it next to her all night felt very unnerving. “Can I ask you s-s-something, th-though?”

“Yes, Trenae?” He stared into her eyes.

 She took a shallow, staggered breath. “Can you take that koaksekhel off now?”


Ra’am placed his right arm directly against the wall by the bed. The koaksekhel’s underside could be seen- a thin, silver, elastic or mesh-like material, with several solid bands spaced equal distances apart. Nonetheless, like everything else on Ha-Ta, it appeared as one unit, with no seams or joints, only differing in texture or shape. So weird. 

Trenae watched. The wall itself grew outward, a large, living amoeba, and swiftly enveloped the koaksekhel on the alien’s arm. Right afterwards, it split the koaksekhel length-wise, from the viewed underneath area, and yanked it off Ra’am’s arm, into the wall. It was gone. She quickly noticed that his arm’s skin and muscles just below the koaksekhel did not appear any different to the condition of his left arm.

“No way,” she said. “How did that happen?”

Shhh,” he said.

He didn’t answer me! Not good.

Ra’am grasped the blanket behind him again. A dark blue thick blanket, the kind normally used as a bedspread comforter on earth, came closer, closer. It looked so warm, so comforting.

But as he pulled it nearer to the bed’s open edge, she panicked again. “No, no.” She thrust her palms up. “Please, I can’t.”

“Trenae, what is it now?” he asked softly. He held the blanket motionless, just above both of them.

She struggled to speak normally, though still trembling. “You have to realize, how hard this is for me. That you are an alien, and I never thought you existed before and now…I am…I am lying so close to one…do you understand?” She surprised herself, her words flowing clearly, without a stammer. For it was her last ditch effort for mercy and understanding.

“I understand. But now, I am tired of negotiating with you. This situation is now under my control. I know what will help you.” He continued wrapping the blanket over both of them.

Trenae covered her eyes again with her hands. “No…no,” she whispered to herself.

“Please, it will be all right. Just trust me.” He completed placing the blanket snuggly around her back. He brought his right arm under the blanket, and gently, slowly wrapped his arm around the middle of her back, softly prying his hand between her waist and the bed, only her thin shirt separating their skin from touching. He had her secured. She felt close to fainting.

Grasping her tighter, Ra’am gently moved her closer. Her fear increased. The strange pain or sensation Trenae had felt earlier stabbed her stomach again. She whimpered helplessly from the pain, persisting to cover her face with trembling hands. He continued bringing her closer, closer, until her face pressed lightly against his upper chest. His left arm, the arm that had been under her head, he now used too, embracing around her body. She became absolutely at his mercy, his honesty as well.

With her hands still covering her face, she felt it difficult to breathe. But if I move my hands, where will I put them? “Ra’am?” she asked. She slid her hands apart and looked toward his face. His hand began stroking over her back, up and down. It felt comforting, reassuring. Nevertheless, she continued to tremble.  

“I know you are scared.” His deep voice vibrated within her body. “You have been shaking for so long. Try to relax. Hold on to me. I promise, I will not do anything but hold you close. Shut your eyes, go to sleep.” Ra’am inhaled and sighed deeply, a sigh of someone grateful, content, his chest expanding against her, behavior much like a human being.

His words, his last words, inflected so tenderly, patiently. Somehow, they soothed Trenae into submission. Placing aside her fear, she glided her trembling palms from near her face to over his chest, moving upwards, sideways along the shirt covering his skin, placing one hand on his upper left shoulder and her other hand over the right side of his body. While she did so, a warm sensation, like earlier, when he first held her, flowed from Ra’am’s hand, his hand yet softly stroking up and down over her back. The warm sensation penetrated inside her rib cage and then flowed to her spinal cord, where it caused a light tingle. Amazingly, the sensation did just as before, quickly reducing the rate of her racing heart, her rapid breathing, her shaking body.

But the sensation frightened her just the same, forcing her to do the only thing she could now; she embraced Ra’am tighter. She could feel her legs press against the coarse jean material covering his legs. She shuddered for a moment, to think how incredibly near their two bodies were. Yet it didn’t matter. She snuggled her face sideways against the shirt over his chest and hugged his solid, sinewy body with all the strength she could find. Though his body was inundated with tough geed’aso fibers, and had a faint coppery scent, his body also felt warm, even slightly pliable. She could hear his heart beating now, pounding similar to a human’s heart, but with a slower, slight metallic clang.    

As Ra’am embraced her, gently stroked her back, Trenae suddenly realized she needed him so desperately, for so many reasons. All the fear, pain, sorrow, betrayal, loneliness, and rejection that people had inflicted upon her in the past year, needed to be erased from her mind, released from her soul. This was the first time in so long she had actually felt comfort.  Even though, as she hugged him tightly, she knew the intimate contact might entice him further; she could feel her breasts press against his chest. Nevertheless she could no longer control her desire. The need for someone to care for her and hold her very, very close, weighed utmost against anything else. Ra’am did know what she needed.

But even though she hugged him tightly, Ra’am held her to the same degree as when he first pulled her near. Only cautiously and gently did he press her against his strong body, continuing to glide his hand along her back, allowing the negee’ah ragoo’a to flow welcomingly into her exhausted body. He was keeping his word.

Slowly, quietly Trenae felt herself dive into a relaxed and peaceful state, her thoughts focusing only on positive, docile scenes and ideas. For some reason, she could no longer fear him nor loathe him. Her breathing slowed and calmed, her body became warm and still. And as she began flying toward a sleeping condition, floating, drifting, and finally entering a dream-like trance, the last thought she had before entering her dreams, without any internal fight or trepidation, was how wonderful it would feel if Ra’am did make love to her now, with the care, gentleness, and passion his touch and emotions exhibited. It would feel so good…so good…