The man was panting as he reached the corridor junction and leaned on the corner to steady himself. He looked left, then right. So many floors, so many hallways.
Over his shoulder, the feminine figure slinking along the wall was drawing closer.
He grimaced and went left.
“Where are you going, pet?” her bemused voice called after him.
He staggered on shaking legs to the next intersection, searching frantically for a clue to guide him out of the maze of passages. There was nothing. He may have already crossed through this section. More than once even.
She rounded the corner behind him and he turned to look back. She’d opened her black latex catsuit and her perfect breasts were jutting out. Straight at him. They were slick with a sheen of oil and topped with dark aureoles surrounding thick, hard nipples.
His eyes went wide. He tripped over his feet, landing in a heap.
The woman stalked him, her high-heeled boots clicking ominously. “I knew you’d go down for me … again.”
She was close. He had to escape. This time. He had to get away from this predator before she consumed him. Too weak to stand, he began to crawl.
The things he knew, the things he’d already told her. Gods, the things he’d begged to tell her.
“Gotcha,” she purred in his ear.
He scrambled forward but one of her boots was already under him. She kicked him over onto his back. He landed with a thud, the air rushed out of him. He gasped it back in as she touched the invisible seam at her crotch. Instantly, the latex parted, from below her navel to the small of her back.
Her plump, juicy sex lips and luscious ass spilled out of the suit before his eyes. He raised a hand, trying to block out the creamy flesh stepping over his prone body.
“Now, we have much more to discuss regarding those security protocols you mentioned.”
“Please! I can’t …” His eyes crossed as her potent musk filled his nostrils. That scent … it made him numb and aroused. And compliant. Her smells tickled the folds of his brain as she shifted her weight and planted her hands on her hips.
“Good toy boy, now … do it some more!”
She dropped to her knees and onto his face in one smooth motion. Her delicious pussy closed over his mouth and nose as she mewled in delight. Below her thrusting hips, his limbs twitched frantically. The woman tossed her head back as she bucked.
His hands and feet shook in violent fits as his body begged for oxygen. Yet his mouth and nose hungrily sucked in every molecule of her addictive essence. His graying moustache was drenched.
Finally, she threw her head forward as her body went rigid. The moan of her climax boomed through corridor like a gong.
She pulled herself off the man and looked down. His pupils were so dilated there was no way to know what color they were. “That’s better.” She stood up and rubbed her fingers through her sopping sex. “Now … tell me what I want to know.”
The man was still swallowing everything she had fed him. When he opened his mouth again, he was all too eager to comply.
Meanwhile, on the Star Ranger flagship Artemis III, the crew are on their way for a long-overdue vacation …
Captain Jette Jones leaned forward in the chair in her cabin. She tapped a button on the console and resumed recording her personal log. “Although she had nothing but kind words for me and my crew, I can’t help but think that if we’d had a moment alone Queen Diamanti might have shared her disappointment in me, personally.”
Jette leaned back, staring at the ceiling.
“Sleeping with Queen Zeta was necessary to my rescue plan (see last issue - C&C). But the fact remains that Diamanti had been chaste and committed to our relationship for three years, despite the time and space separating us. After that moment with Zeta, Queen Diamanti realized I had not been. I can only hope she forgives me and understands that my duty to complete the mission had to take priority over my relationship.”
There was a soft chime from the door. Jette sat up and gave her blue Ranger jacket a firm tug at the waist to smooth it out. She switched off her personal log, then called out “Come.”
The hatch opened and the Vicar of Yasu entered, her crimson robes flowing gently around her. “Am I disturbing you, Captain?”
Jette dimmed the display on her console and looked up. “Not at all. Just going over my official report. What’s on your mind?”
“Riesga needs bed rest, but she insists she’s fine. She re-injured herself during our escape and for the Xlypham injections to be most effective she really should be off her feet.”
“A day, at least.”
Jette shook her head. “It’s gonna have to wait, K’wari. Too many repairs. The ship is holding together on spit and bubble gum. Those Diamond Warriors almost blasted the hull down to the rivets.”
Jette sighed. She knew that look. “I’ll get her to take it easier.”
“Thank you, Captain.”
Jette motioned for her to sit. K’wari took the seat across from Jette, pulling her hands into the folds of her robes. “Speaking of repairs, how are we doing?”
K’wari shrugged. “I’m not entirely sure, Captain. Flock does not want my help.”
Jette nodded with understanding. “I’ll speak to her too. She might just need some time.” K’wari looked wounded. “So might you?”
After a long moment, K’wari said, “I’m going to retire to my quarters to meditate, Captain. The experience in Te’ Sareez has shown me that I still have much to learn about myself and my commitment to the Order of Yasu.”
“I wouldn’t be too hard on yourself, Vicar,” Jette said quietly. “Mind control can happen to the best of us.”
“Message coming in from HQ, Skipper.”
“I’ll have it now, Riesga.”
An image appeared on Jette’s console screen. It was Admiral Hartley.
“I’m glad you’re accepting my offer and taking a week of R&R on Plutonia, Captain. You and your crew deserve it. I’m going to be leaving for there myself shortly. I look forward to seeing you … safe and sound. We have much to discuss. Hartley out.”
“Accepted the offer?” K’wari’s eyebrows raised in surprise. “It’s strange Admiral Hartley wants to send us there.”
“Plutonia has become a very popular escape for Star Rangers lately, or so I’ve heard.”
“I suppose the Admiral wants the proper atmosphere for when she meets with you.”
“Jette … you know she’s going to want an answer about the promotion. Everyone knows about it. What are you going to tell her?”
There was a terrible, wonderful darkness.
She could see Hunni standing in front of her Guardian chassis. In her hands were the power armor’s leggings.
“I gathered these for you.”
The memory floated in and out of her unconscious mind. Was this the Te’ Sareez Space Station? It was dark … cold.
“I am going to stay at the station and train to be sentry here. I think I have a knack for it.” Hunni’s smile was sweet, reassuring.
Flock felt herself grinning. “You sure that’s what you want?”
“Yes.” Hunni looked at the robot. “I’ve gotten … attached to it.” She tapped Flock’s armor over her heart. “It’s what’s on the inside that matters, yes?”
Flock looked down at her feet … she didn’t see her legs. She looked back up at Hunni, but a new face was there. The woman was laughing but Flock couldn’t hear any sound. She knew that face.
Flock felt a hand between her legs.
“You will obey.”
Flock heard herself answer: “I will obey.”
She arched her back as if her nipples were being pulled. There was a humming in her head … and words, steady and seductive.
She felt the orgasm rumble through her hips as her mouth soundlessly repeated the conditioned responses. Again and again and again.
“When you hear me give the command, my iron maiden, you will kill Captain Jones.”
A sharp climax woke her suddenly, her eyes opening into more darkness.
“Queen Zeta!” She screamed the sleep from her mind.
Flock sat up and breathed heavily, a hand to her forehead. Her legs were spread wide on the bed, the sheet kicked off.
Tonight’s nightmare was over.
Cadet Johansen “Flock” Powers shook her head slowly. Her room comm beeped.
She hit the button on the night table. “I’m here.”
It was Riesga. “Captain wants you in the CM as soon as you can. One of the stabilizers is on the fritz.”
“On my way.”
Flock didn’t move for a long moment.
The mighty Artemis III rocket ship glowed like a silver needle as it slipped into the atmosphere and dropped into an approach lane. The front view screen was filled with the neon glow of Plutonia. The city district they were headed for was still miles beneath them but there were huge floating sky stations, yachts and billboards filling the sky everywhere they looked. Each was a kaleidoscope of flickering colors and dancing lights.
There were a series of screens floating just off the starboard side of the ship. Each was as tall as a skyscraper. They were arranged like stairs, each a bit lower and farther than the last. As the ship approached the first billboard it changed from the approach light pattern into the image of a gleaming, silver woman.
“Greetings, visitors.” The voice oozed verbal sex into the cockpit over the docking channel frequency. “Welcome to Plutonia.” She blew a kiss as the ship flew past.
The silver woman winked from the first billboard and appeared on the next. Waiting patiently as the ship continued its descent and approached her once again. “You are cleared for landing in the Hampton District. Kindred Ward. Landing bay two-zero-one-seven.”
“Artemis confirms: docking bay two-zero-one-seven,” Jette replied.
“Your Plutonian experience starts as soon as you step onto the landing pad. What may we have waiting for you? Cool beverage? Warm company?”
“A repair crew, please.”
“A repair crew will be eagerly awaiting your arrival.” The image dipped one leg and sensuously posed.
“This is … uh … quite a welcome.” Riesga’s head tilted as she monitored their approach vector with one eye. The other was on the billboards.
“You haven’t seen anything yet, Lieutenant,” Jette replied as Epsilon steered them to the surface. She let her thoughts wander. Diamanti had been faithful, and now Jette was landing on Plutonia. To meet with Admiral Hartley. She shook her head. Some offers may be too good to refuse.
Jette was first through the large hatch as the crew stepped onto streets of Plutonia’s capital city. She took a deep breath of the humid evening air. “Hotel’s this way.” She pointed north. “It’s not far.” She gripped the luggage pack on her shoulder and began walking. The crew followed, Flock bringing up the rear.
Epsilon and Riesga were looking up into the impossibly high canopy of buildings surrounding them. The uppermost levels were too far away to see in the mist. “Skipper? Should we take a taxi?” Riesga pointed at a constant stream of gold and purple air skippers buzzing overhead.
“You’’ll never get the full Plutonian experience that way,” Flock chimed in. Riesga zipped up her Ranger jacket in reply.
“Good evening, dear dahmess!” A short, thin alien wearing a flat-disc hat approached them, his orange beak was curled into a sincere smile. “I couldn’t help but overhear your conversation. I just wanted to warn you, there have been a rash of burglaries in the neighborhood as of late. I beg you. Positively beg you, you must be cautious!” His feathers ruffled dramatically.
He placed a concerned hand on Riesga’s shoulder. “Thieves! Thieves are everywhere. Absolutely everywhere.”
“Uh … thank you.”
“Not at all, my dear! Happy to be of service.” He tipped his hat cheerfully. “Good evening, dahmess.” He turned to leave and stopped short. Flock was standing directly in his path.
“Nope!” Flock pulled up the sleeve of his jacket. Riesga’s ID card fell out.
“Hey!” She scooped up her badge and pushed it back into her breast pocket.
“Get lost,” Flock growled. “Next time, I’ll feed you so many knuckle sandwiches your grandchildren will still be eating them.”
The man fluttered off, chattering under his breath.
“Perhaps a taxi would be advisable.” Epsilon’s matrix whirred in an incongruent sine wave.
“We’re almost there,” Jette pointed to a towering hotel with a huge circle of stone pavers outside its entrance. The teal and violet lights over the door read, “The Princess Blaine Caravansary”.
As the crew approached, a man rushed toward them. He had nearly a dozen umbrellas hanging from his forearms. Each sported a neon light bar in a different color. “Greetings travelers!” he said brightly. “Very rainy, very steamy at night here on Plutonia.” He snapped open one of the umbrellas. “Very useful. Only 800 credits.” He stepped forward and tried to hand it to Epsilon.
“That’s close enough!” Riesga barked. “No need for physical contact.”
“Ah!” The man beamed, not missing a beat. “It’s not your first visit to Plutonia. For repeat travelers we have a special discount. For you, only 200 credits.”
Rear Admiral Hartley sipped her drink and straightened the hem on her uniform kilt. She was 45 minutes early, but that was fine. She always enjoyed the eye candy that flowed past her in the Paw Print – one of Plutonia’s most exclusive nightclubs.
She checked her hand comp periodically for messages, relieved to know nothing “urgent” required her attention.
Although Plutonia offered her countless diversions from the stresses of her job as Supreme Commander of the Star Ranger Corps, she wasn’t here for fun and games. Having Marissa in her bed for the past three nights was satisfying enough, even if the young officer seemed more interested in the Admiral’s work life than her sex life – ship deployments, duty rosters, the chain of command.
Hartley chalked it up to Marissa’s desire to be an efficient and useful aide-de-camp. The sex, it seemed, was secondary.
She spotted her sitting with a young, male officer sharing a drink across the room. She laughed to herself. She knew what that was like. And she wouldn’t deprive Marissa of those experiences. After all, there were always officers eager to curry favor with the Admiral. But she never, ever, let it cloud her judgment.
Besides, she had someone else on her mind.
“Commodore. I’m surprised to see you here and not on Moonbase.”
Commodore Veitch sighed. “Oh, everything is backed up. Not enough resources. I’ve heard there have been some security breaches. It’s a mess. Seemed like a good time for a vacation. We are completely overloaded and underfunded.”
“Don’t look at me. I’m just the boss.”
“Oh. Cadet?” The Commodore turned to the young woman beside him. “This is Admiral Hartley.”
“Admiral Hartley! It’s an honor, really. I’ve heard so much about –”
“At ease, Cadet. I hope you’re having an enjoyable time?” The pretty cadet nodded timidly. “Yes, I think you’re in the perfect place for shore leave. What is your name?”
“Cadet Emily Darling, Sir.”
Hartley nearly dropped her glass.
“Uh … Cadet. Why don’t you go get us a couple more drinks.”
Commodore Veitch took the last sip from his glass as Hartley checked out the cadet from behind.
He met her grin. “Well, it made it easy to pick her out. And she has the ‘Yes, Sir’ down already.”
There was a pregnant pause.
Veitch strode to the bar. The smile had just left Hartley’s lips –
“Is this seat taken?”
Hartley barely looked up at the young woman. She waved her hand toward the chair, somewhat amused.
The woman sat down – careful to avoid sitting on her tail. She had pointed ears, whiskers and a tight feline body covered in a pink latex catsuit. Hartley was not surprised.
“My name is Tora. What’s yours?”
“My name is Onimanina.” Hartley gave the catgirl a quick appraisal with her eyes.
“Unusual name. I like it. Do you have plans this evening?”
“Save it, honey. I’ve been with catwomen since you were a kitten.”
“I’m just being friendly.” She noticed one empty glass on the table. “I see you are alone.”
“Not for long, hopefully.” Hartley leaned across the table. “And, are those …?”
She brushed the catgirl’s whiskers gently with the back of her hand. “I must say, I’ve never seen a catwoman with real whiskers before.”
“You like them?”
Hartley nodded. “It adds a certain something. Born that way or were they implanted?”
“I was born with them. My mother had them too.”
“I see. Very unusual.” Hartley reached for the empty glass.
“May I buy you a fresh drink?” The catgirl batted her eyes.
“Are you old enough to drink?”
“I am of age. I’m older than I look. Perhaps you’d like one of these.”
The catgirl extended a small pillbox, which popped open. There were four small capsules inside.
Hartley almost laughed. “I don’t think you want to offer an illegal drug to the rear admiral of the Star Ranger Corps, honey.”
The catgirl leaned in with a sly smile. “I thought it might move things along.”
“No, thank you.”
Hartley started to stand, but the catgirl grabbed her wrist. She slowly dragged her clawed hand across Hartley’s bare arm.
“Well that was damned stup –” Hartley froze. All the light went out of her eyes.
“It’s all right,” the young woman said cheerfully. “My catatonic is much more fun than a pleasure pill anyway. Sit down. I’d like to get to know you better. See what’s in that pretty head of yours.”
Hartley sat back down slowly, her head tilted toward nothing. She looked stunned, her shoulders drooped.
“We’re going to have such fun, Onimanina. I’m going to make you orgasm so much your mind is going to just pop like a soap bubble.”
She scratched Hartley under her chin. A thin red line appeared. Hartley moaned helplessly. Her legs spread on their own. The catgirl discretely reached under her skirt and slit the admiral’s panties open effortlessly.
A long-nailed finger wormed its way inside.
Flock already had a fistful of drinks in her hands as Jette and K’wari ordered, leaning on the bar in the Taco Twins Drinkery. For once, Jette was dressed casually – a white blouse with a black vest and matching pants. She still had her rayvolver at her hip. It was the type of bar Jette would have found herself in 10 years ago. Divey but fairly tame. She was happy to indulge her crew tonight. She was more interested in the R’s of R&R.
K’wari ordered their drinks, then took in the room. “I’m curious, Jette,” she said, turning to face her. “How was the mad queen in bed?”
Jette’s eyes went wide. “You really want to know all the details?”
K’wari half-smiled. “Frankly, yes.”
Jette paid for the drinks and handed K’wari her glass. “I did what I had to do to save my crew. And I’d do it again.”
“That good?” Jette sneered at her playfully. “I assumed Zeta wore the strapon.”
“A phallus? A synthetic penis.” Jette couldn’t hide her embarrassment. “She fucked you.”
“No. I fucked her. Trust me, you weren’t there.”
K’wari looked Jette in the eye. “Did you ask her for permission to cum?”
“She fucked you.” K’wari quickly took a sip of her drink.
Jette barely moved. “Goddammit.” She took a drink. “You’re right.”
The crew was seated quietly around a large table as Jette and K’wari returned. Flock and Riesga had opted for dresses tonight – each garment complimenting their curves without being overt. Everyone looked at the brown, bubbling mixture in front of K’wari.
“How can you drink that?” Riesga scrunched her face.
“The bartender knew how to make it. It calms me.”
“You may need it,” Jette said quietly as she looked around. “I don’t see you doing much meditating here.”
Riesga looked, wide-eyed, at two spidery aliens copulating in a corner of the bar. “Who picked this place?”
“I did,” said Flock. “It’s early. See what it’s like in three or four hours.”
“Three or four … hours?”
“Things don’t get cranking until the half-moon.”
There was a long silence. Flock looked around the table.
“Okay, so who’s visiting Plutonia for the first time?”
Riesga timidly raised her hand. Flock pointed at Epsilon. “I know you haven’t.” She pointed at K’wari. “I know you have. How about you, Captain?”
“I was here once before. When I was a cadet.”
“Have a good time?”
Jette’s memory smiled. “I think so. I don’t remember too much about it. It was the goal of my classmates to drink as much as possible as quickly as possible.”
“How about the … entertainment?”
“We’re here, aren’t we? Speaking of which, I spotted one of my old instructors from cadet school. I think I’ll say hello. Anybody need anything?”
Flock downed her drink and raised a finger.
“I’ll be back in a bit.”
Flock turned to Riesga. “So, Kanivia, a Plutonian virgin. This should be interesting.”
Epsilon looked around the dark room. “I don’t see very many men here.”
Flock patted her back. “Atta girl, Epsilon. Play the whole field. You’ll never learn about these things unless you –”
“Cut it out, Flock.” K’wari gave her a cross look as she swirled the brown liquid in her glass.
“Says the wise elder. I’m just trying to liven things up, K’wari. In fact, I think I’ll take a look around.” Flock stood up and leaned across the table. “Don’t wait up.”
Epsilon followed her with her eyes. She was confused, her body’s matrix flashing across her arms. “Flock seems … not her normal self.”
“She’s been through a lot,” Riesga volunteered. “We all have.”
“She’ll be all right,” K’wari said. “She just needs to blow off some steam. That may be a good idea for all of us. I know the Captain could use a break.”
Jette approached Commodore Kruett, tapping his shoulder and stepping back with a smile.
It took a moment for Kruett to turn from the bar, his eyes vacantly fixed a foot above Jette’s head.
“Commodore, it’s great to see you again. How are you?” Outside of a slight muscle twitch on the side of his mouth, Kruett didn’t acknowledge her. Didn’t recognize her. “Commodore? … It’s Jette …”
Kruett smiled slowly – not to her – but to something only he could see in his mind. He slowly shuffled around and walked away.
Someone started their party early tonight, Jette thought.
Flock was hanging by the bar, but didn’t see anyone interesting. She let out a long exhale.
“Would you like to use me?”
Her head snapped around. A very pretty pleasure bot looked at her both vacantly and intensely. Her robot body was perfectly 36-24-36. It got Flock’s attention.
“Maybe.” Flock pretended to act like this was a real woman. “What do you offer?”
The female robot smiled.
“I am versed in 220 different ways to give a woman pleasure.”
“Really? Sounds good to me. How much?”
“That would be 450 credits. In advance.”
“FOUR hundred and –” Flock pulled out her ID card. “Done.”
The robot stood close, a small horizontal slit opened at its abdomen. Flock stared at it a moment, then pushed the card in. The robot vibrated gently.
“I will need to probe you in order to arrange the proper atmosphere.”
“None of that holographic shit. I want a real place.”
“I have access to multiple activity rooms, fully sanitized.”
“Any bed will do. Lead the way.”
Jette was making her way back to the table when she saw a familiar face.
“Captain Jones. Do you remember me?”
“Yes, of course, Sella. How have you been?’
Jette liked Sella. Whenever Jette had business with the Galactic Systems League’s Judge Advocates Office on Moonbase One it was usually Sella who dealt with it. She was older, fairly attractive and always pleasant. Jette had long since gotten used to the fact that Sella had four arms. And six breasts.
“May I have a moment? In private?”
Sella looked nervously around the bar. Jette nodded her toward a far corner. “What can I do for you?”
“I’m sorry to trouble you, Captain, but I don’t know … who to trust.” Another nervous look around the room got Jette’s full attention.
“What is it?”
Sella tried to whisper above the background music. “I think there’s something going on. I can’t put my finger on it but there have been some strange coincidences.”
“Well, as you know, I’ve been working in the JAO. Our computer system has recently been updated, so we’ve been busy transferring files. Much of it is top secret. Anyway, last Friday I was collating some data into the system. I was the last person in the office, except for Judge Zinn, who’s been working later than usual lately. Well, the next morning, I came in early to finish the project I was working on and I noticed that many of the files had been copied.”
“By Judge Zinn?”
“Yes. He was the only other person with access. The next day he flew here.”
“What kind of files?”
“Almost everything related to the JAO – personnel files, case histories, the financials. Anything anyone would want to know, I suppose.”
“I’m not sure what I –”
“There’s more.” She tugged Jette’s sleeve, so she was facing away from the room. “I was talking with one of my friends, she works in the legal department at GSL headquarters. She said a very similar thing happened to her – someone making copies of sensitive documents. Then the vice president himself came here to Plutonia the next day!”
“I thought … maybe? But the friend of another friend told her that Commander Chin-Wa was recently reprimanded for –”
Sella nodded forcefully. “It seems that someone or some group is collecting classified information all over the GSL. And Commander Chin-Wa?”
She pointed to a booth along the opposite wall. Chin-Wa was sitting with two catwomen.
“Okay, Sella. Keep this to yourself for now. I’ll ask a few people, see what I can find out.”
“Taffey’s Emporium. That seems to be where everyone who has been acting strangely has been congregating.”
“All right, Sella. I’ll poke around. Maybe you –”
“I’m on the next cruiser out of here, Captain. I’ve already been poking around. I feel like I’m being watched all the time.”
Jette ran her hand along one of Sella’s arms. “Okay. Good idea.”
“Thank you, Captain. And … be careful who you trust.”
Riesga sat up as she saw Jette heading out the front door, then slumped back into her chair. “I’m going to back to the room,” she said, finally.
Epsilon’s matrix jittered as she processed this development. “You do not wish to partake in shore leave?”
“This isn’t my scene.”
K’wari eyed her, folding her hands on the table casually. “Are you sure, Kanivia? I know some places we could check out. Maybe find something you like?” K’wari studied the young lieutenant but she was already shaking her head.
“I’ll see you all later.” Riesga pushed herself back from the table and marched toward the door.
“Right,” K’wari muttered, taking a long sip of her drink.
Epsilon watched her quietly a few moments. “You are disappointed.”
K’wari pushed her own chair away from the table. “No.” She waved Epsilon to her feet and steered her to the door.
“You are not disappointed?”
“Not for long,” K’wari called over her shoulder.
Jette had been to Taffey’s once before. And it looked exactly the same – dreamlike, perverse, shadowy, smokey. A no-tell-don’t-ask establishment.
She took a seat in an empty back booth in the half-filled club. It was still early, after all. It had a small stage for the evening’s entertainment, usually nothing more than a welcomed distraction from the vice. It had a long, wide, double-sided bar that ran down the center. That’s where most of the action was. Twinkling strobes hung above it, shooting out silvery diffused light streams playing in odd contrast to the blood-red footlights that gave Taffey’s its signature decadent vibe.
One could barely see the faces of the “guests” who inhabited the spiral-patterned tables that ringed the bar.
A cymbal crashed and a spotlight hit the stage.
Jette waved off a cocktail bot before it could engage her.
“Good evening, alien ladies and gentlemen!” The short, round man bowed, his arms out. “Welcome to Taffey’s Emporium. Tonight, we have a very special treat for you. Lady Azure and the snake!”
A smattering of applause met another cymbal strike as the spot moved toward the center of the stage. Weird, sonic music assaulted Jette’s ears as the performer – tall, red-haired, voluptuous – appeared from behind the curtain. A six-foot, orange boa constrictor was wrapped around her near-naked body.
“Snakes,” Jette groaned to herself. “Why does it always have to be snakes.”
Jette took in the rest of the club. Just as Sella had said, the room was filled with familiar faces – dignitaries, officials, officers … a who’s who of Galactic Systems League power-brokers.
Hovering around them were robot servers, golddiggers, favor-seekers … and catwomen, Plutonia’s preferred “ladies of the evening.”
And Commodore Kruett.
He had one catwoman in his lap and another standing over him. His eyes were lidded and unfocused, as he had been when Jette tried to talk to him. Kruett was a happily married, all-business guy – he looked drugged.
The catwoman standing put out her hand. Kruett pulled out a small stack of discs. He handed them to her without a blink, without even looking up.
The catwoman tucked the discs into a small pouch at her hip, leaned down and kissed his forehead.
Flock’s climax made her collapse onto the pillow.
“When I get 27 of those,” she puffed, “I’ll let you know.”
She slowly caught her breath in the simply decorated “activity room.”
Flock flipped to her side, her arm propped under her head. “I’m here for a week.”
The robotgirl stretched. Flock studied every curve.
“C’mon. Let’s go again.”
The robotgirl turned to her. Its face emotionless. “That will be another 450 credits.”
“Do I get a discount?”
The robotgirl considered. “Three hundred and fifty … with a tip.”
Flock laughed. “Robots need tips?”
The robot sat up in the bed. “I am self-maintained. I am not owned.”
Flock pulled it by the waist and kissed it deeply.
“We’ll see about that.”
The music throbbed. Every surface – tables, floors and walls –flashed in time with the rhythm. The strobing and shifting colors painted the sea of bodies that danced in service to the beat.
K’wari stood at the railing looking down on the dance floor below. Her hips and ass were already moving to the music. Epsilon was beside her, hands perched on the railing. She followed K’wari’s gaze down to the writhing bodies below, her matrix shifting through several uncertain patterns.
“Do you dance?” K’wari shouted.
“I have not attempted to do so.” Epsilon called back. “But it seems accessible enough.” She looked at K’wari and began weaving her hips left and right while her upper torso and feet remained totally motionless. K’wari turned away to bite back a laugh, then she took Epsilon by the shoulders and helped her stop the ridiculous undulation.
“That’s a great start,” she nodded, trying to sound enthusiastic. “But, it’s more fun if you use your whole body.” She lifted her arms over her head and demonstrated, swaying her hips and gliding her hands smoothly through the air. “Let the rhythm flow through you. If you let yourself feel it, the music will guide your body.”
Epsilon stood rigid, processing. After a moment, her matrix began to throb. The white lines flowing over her body bounced in perfect sync with the driving beat. Then, her hands glided over her head, drawing curves in the air while her hips began to roll forward and back in a lewd rhythm.
Epsilon’s eyes were nearly closed, her mouth open in a silent moan, as she danced and caressed her own grinding body. Her hips and legs were thrusting as if atop an invisible lover.
A small opening in the crowd around them parted. Beings of every sort were gawking – fantasizing of how it would feel to be the lucky person between Epsilon’s flexing thighs.
K’wari’s eyes gleamed.
“Is this more appropriate?” The living computer turned away and the view from behind was even more spectacular. “The music feels like … fornication.” K’wari’s eyes followed the sensuous weaving of Epsilon’s body as she slowly spun around to face her again.
“Uh … yeah. That’s gonna work great.” She smiled and took Epsilon’s hand, pulling them toward the gravfield lift connecting the upper level with the dance floor. They stepped into the column of light and floated gently to the lower level.
In the darkest shadows of Taffey’s Emporium, a man and a woman have their eyes on Jette …
“She followed him,” the woman said, her voice thick with an Algarian accent. “She is going to be trouble.”
The man leaned into her ear. “Star Ranger. Coincidence?”
Four eyes followed Jette as she got up and followed the catwoman, who was hurriedly walking toward the back of the club.
“Following him? Now following the pussy? She’s going to find Dyn, and then we will have more trouble.” The woman’s voice was a sneer. She sucked on her astro-smoke. “Now that we are so close. She will need to be dealt with.”
“I’ll take care of it.”
The woman grabbed his collar. “Find out who she is with. Alone, she will be easier to handle.”
The man nodded and hurried off. A smoke ring, in the shape of a heart, drifted from the woman’s lips. It vanished with a wave of her hand.
The catwoman walked directly down a long hallway at the back end of Taffey’s. Jette kept as close as she could without being noticed, but the club was so dark, who would notice her?
As the catwoman reached the exit, someone gripped her shoulder. Jette slid behind a tall dish cart. It was quieter here, quiet enough to hear their conversation.
“What’s up, pussycat?”
The catwoman was startled. “Oh, Elexa. I didn’t expect to see you.”
The woman towered over the smaller catwoman, one hand pressed against the wall. “I keep my eye on all the pussies. Hand over the goods, sweetie.”
The woman was angular, blonde, fit. She wore layered dark clothing with pants and high boots that accentuated her height. Even in the hallway’s red glow, her lips stood out. Her eyes sparkled in a bed of black mascara.
“What if she says something?”
“She won’t. Just tell her what I told you to tell her. Let me worry about everything else.”
Jette stepped off the lift. The hallways were empty, quiet. She looked to the right, where she’d followed the mysterious woman exiting the transport lift in the same hotel the crew was staying. There were only four rooms on that side of the hall. She listened at each door. She heard the sound of a sonic shower outside one of the rooms. She made her best guess.
On a recent mission, Epsilon had taught Jette how to pick locks, despite not having data spikes coming out her fingers like Epsilon. Jette took out her multi-tool and tried out her new talent.
Thirty seconds later, the door popped open with a low click.
Drawing her rayvolver, Jette tip-toed inside. She began searching the room as the shower ran. She moved quickly, but thoroughly. Nothing.
Jette didn’t hesitate. The rayvolver hit the floor.
Wrapped in a towel, it was hard for Jette to not stare. Long legs, with an ass that didn’t need to be more than it was, round but compact. Toned arms and legs. Narrow waist. Breasts that filled out the S of her shape perfectly.
Her face was both sly and no nonsense. It seemed to be her default expression.
She carried some oomph.
Jette looked the laser pistol in her hand impassively. “Okay, what’s next? I saw what you did in the club. I heard every word.”
“Why do you think I have this pistol pointed at your heart.”
“I’d be more than happy to walk right on out of here. As long as you tell me how you’re mixed up with that catwoman.”
“Really. You think catwomen are new to Plutonia? Or any other pleasure planet? You need to take more vacations.”
“Well, these cats seem to be catnip to every member of the Galactic Systems League who lands here.”
“That’s not a surprise either. Everyone wants to touch the robes of the powerful. It’s part of the barter system here.”
“I think someone is taking it to extremes.”
“Plutonia is a funny place …” She looked at Jette expectantly.
“Captain Jette Jones.”
The woman back-peddled waving the pistol, shocked. “Oh you have got to be fucking kidding me. Jette Jones?”
Jette took a step forward but the women smoothly leveled the laser pistol at her again.
“There must be some serious shit going on around here to have Jette Fucking Jones on the job.”
“And your name is?”
“Dyn. Elexa Dyn. I’m … on holiday.”
“You know, pointing that pistol at me is going to get you less information than if you put it down. How about you tell me what you know. I’ve already told you what I know. Then we break.”
Jette took a step forward. “Of course, if I find out you’re mixed up in this more than I already think you are, then our next conversation will be a lot more one-sided.”
The woman shook her head tightly.
“It’s not going to happen. I don’t want to have to lie to a Star Ranger. You just need to back off.”
“Then what are you going to do? Pull that trigger? Right now, Elexa, you’re in a bigger fix than I am. Killing a Star Ranger is pretty much a death sentence. There are about 4,000 Rangers who would hunt you down. So, your choice.”
The woman knew she was being outplayed. There was a split-second when her attention drifted off Jette as she weighed her options.
The pistol flew out of her hand, slamming against the side of a table. Jette’s foot still hung in the air in front of her face.
“That kinda settles that.” Jette lowered it slowly. She bent down to pick up her rayvolver …
The woman dove for her, the two collapsing in the corner of the room. They wrestled for control, pinning themselves against each other. The woman’s towel sliding down and off her. Neither one could get an advantage … but neither seemed to want it the more they struggled together. Their legs wrapped in knots, but their hands pushed and pulled against the other. They rolled toward the bed, their breasts smashed together.
One last turn, and Jette was on top of the woman, pinning her shoulders. The fight went out of the woman’s body. She smiled. Jette raised up, but the woman gripped her ass with both hands.
“Oh, the things we could do right now,” Elexa purred, eyeing the bed.
Jette slid back and stood up. She picked up her rayvolver and slammed it in the holster.
“Maybe after I find out what’s going on you’ll get your chance. Let’s see those discs.”
Elexa stood up and casually plucked the discs from underneath the nightstand. “Oh, these? They aren’t of much use. Except for drink coasters.”
She handed them to Jette, who immediately noticed that the reader chips had been broken off.
“You do this before or after you downloaded the information?”
“You’re free to search my room, Captain,” she said as she picked up her towel. She didn’t use it. “But if you aren’t a member of the polizi or hotel security, I’d have to have you arrested for trespassing.”
Jette looked at her hard. “One way or another, I’m going to get to the bottom of this.”
“Like I said, Captain, Plutonia is a funny place. Everyone is trying to get to the bottom of something. Some bottoms are better than others.”
Jette reached the door and not breaking stride said, “I’ll be watching you.”
The woman stared at the closed door and shook her head. “Jette Fucking Jones …”
The Hajick female’s body was covered in short tendrils, each a bit thinner than a small finger. They rippled like wind blowing across tall grass in a field. K’wari gasped and pressed her ass into the woman’s legs as another wave of the tiny digits rolled over the fabric of her skin-tight black pants.
The woman was nearly eight feet tall. She bent over, bringing her face close to K’wari’s ear. The thicker tentacles, one on either side of her mouth, glided across K’wari’s neck and chin eliciting a moan from the swaying Vicar. “Do you like my fahlahangeis?”
“Yessss,” K’wari hissed into the nub of silken tendrils on the side of the woman’s head.
“Humans and Hajicks are a good match. Your bodies enjoy our tentacles.”
K’wari’s breath caught in her chest as she felt some of those tentacles creep across her back and shoulders. One of the tendrils at her neck slipped under her shirt and began to weave its way down toward her stiff, throbbing nipple.
“Did you know Hajicks can send energy through their fahlahangeis?”
“Oh my fuck!” K’wari’s neck rolled on her shoulders as the tentacle closed over her nipple and squeezed. She pinched the other one herself.
“I can turn your nerves into pleasure points. All of them.”
K’wari took a fistful fahlahangeis near the woman’s knees and tugged. The woman moaned in three simultaneous octaves. K’wari’s eyes were slits as she tugged open the catch on her pants. Across the sea of bodies she could see Epsilon boxed into a corner by two women.
Reluctantly, she pulled away from the Hajick. “I … I need to check on my friend.”
The Hajick studied her a moment, nodding. “Maybe you’ll come back?”
K’wari pulled her down and kissed her full-on: mouth, lips and both tentacles.
The Hajick groaned, “I’ll stay a while.”
K’wari nodded and finally pulled away. She ran her fingers through her hair and took a deep breath as she headed for Epsilon.
Riesga was lost.
She hadn’t been on Plutonia long enough to know her way around and had left her hand comp in her room. Retracing her steps to return to the bar only led her farther away from the city center. There were fewer and fewer people. Each distant sound lured her into unknown territory.
She heard laughter and music as she cut across the street and down an alleyway. She stopped from the suddenness of the silence. It was darker here. A sky taxi zipped by overhead and disappeared before she could flag it.
Riesga slammed her hands on her hips as she debated which way to go at the end of the alley – dark or darker. A shadowy shape slinked along the wall that separated two buildings.
Riesga looked up and saw eyes and teeth and breasts … and a tail.
“Just took a wrong turn somewhere,” she said slowly. The sound of an overturned disposal container turned her head. Two more catgirls had somehow managed to sneak up behind her. One stepped closer, licking her lips.
“Puss, puss, puss.”
“This won’t … work.” Speaking took so much effort. And that effort had to be borrowed from the resolve that kept Admiral Hartley from begging the catwoman to stroke her G-spot, warm and waiting inside. “Security detail … plainclothes … outside.”
“Oh, I know,” the catwoman said. “They’d spoil our fun quick if they saw me try to take you out of here.” She stretched her arms up over head and let them rest on the back of the booth. “Fortunately, I have a place close by where I can fuck your mind properly.” She pressed something under the table and Hartley fell backward, spilling through the seat cushion until she crashed onto a padded floor.
Hartley looked up and realized she was on the other side of the wall, staring through it and out into the dimly lit club. She put her hand to the “wall“ and felt it vibrating in her hands. There was a flash of heat and she yanked her hand away as if stung.
“Hologram projection … force field.”
“That’s right,” the catwoman said behind her. “Doesn’t just block light. Sound as well. Which is good because you’re about to be making a lot of noise.”
Hartley turned, not sure what to expect. A black, smooth sphere with a red light in the center was floating near one corner of the dark room. The catwoman tapped something on her wrist comp and the light blinked once and then surged brightly. The bot began to hum as it advanced on the Admiral.
“What … what’s that?” Hartley slurred, trying to steady herself. She could feel the insistent buzz of her clit soaking her fur.
“Interrogation bot,” the catwoman smiled cheerfully. “Now that your mind is nice and simmering, we can get started pouring in some new … seasonings.”
The bot hovered closer, humming more and more loudly. Hartley leaped toward it, striking out with her hand … but passed through empty air as the bot zipped out of the way. She fell off balance and collapsed to the floor, shaky and disoriented.
“Pick her up,” the catwoman instructed.
The lower half of the bot split open and Hartley saw spidery limbs unfold from within. The arms spread wide as the bot grabbed for her. She tried to kick away, but it had slid behind her and was at her back. It climbed onto her!
The articulated limbs closed around her shoulders, under her arms and around her neck. Holding her as tightly as steel clamps, the bot rose up into the air and took Harley with it. She hung limply as the catwoman produced a small cylinder with a red tip. She pressed it to the Admiral’s uniform.
There was a whiff of burning and then the garments split open. The pink-latex woman grinned and finished cutting off all of Hartley’s clothing. The Admiral’s pert breasts spilled out of her top, nipples erect and throbbing.
“What are you do –” Hartley was cut off by a deep thrumming from behind her head. Another set of arms reached out and into Hartley’s wobbly field of vision. There was a spoon-shaped device at the end of each limb with green lights within it.
“Stop!” Hartley gasped as the small cups drew near her face. As they got closer still she could see tiny silk-fine tendrils around the edge of the green lights. She tried to wrench herself free, but the clawed appendages under her arms held her in place.
The silken tendrils slooooooowly snaked out and spread her glassy eyes open, fixing them widely as the cups closed over her corneas and sealed there.
The catwoman smiled as green light began flashing from underneath the eye cups. Hartley’s body twitched in midair as the bot held her in its grasp.
Admiral Hartley moaned in despair.
Lt. Kanivia Riesga’s eyes were riveted to the circular movements of the striped tail bobbing in front of her. A meow. A purr. A lick across her cheek. The three felines moved in a slow circle around the Star Ranger mesmerized by them.
They had been so helpful, so calming, so nice. Kanivia enjoyed their compliments and attention at first. Then gradually she began to lose focus – the soothing purrs and gentle caresses making her a bit sleepy. Comfy. Like lying in a bed of fur.
She hadn’t even realized that she had dropped to her knees, then onto her back. Her eyes floating from one tail to the next languidly rolling across her vision. Up and down, in and out.
And the petting, stiffening her nipples, making her body warm and relaxed. Dreamy.
She was just about to fall asleep …
“Scram, tabbies. This one is for me.”
“Aww, you’re always spoiling our fun, Marissa.”
Admiral Hartley’s aide-de-camp waved the three catgirls away.
“Patience, kitties. There will be more playmates soon.” She leaned down, turned Riesga’s head with a finger under her chin.
“Hello, sleepyhead. When I’m done with you, Star Ranger, you’ll be a purrrrrrfect addition to our litter.”
To be continued next month in Part 2 of “Pleasure Trap of the Catwomen” …