Nix leans back and crosses her legs, her fingers running along the scales on her cane, as she looks at the start of her new painting. A big blue heart, bundled up with sloppy green vines that seem to bleed outward in random directions. Right before she's about to continue her work, her stomach starts to growl. "Aaaaaah!" She spins around and looks up at Sola, who's casually reading in the background on her datapad.
Sola puts away her datapad, and stands up to walk over to Nix. “Lunch time, we need to rescue Celosia from her paperwork, then we can feed you, and get some fresh air.” She picks Nix up, making sure she still has her cane, before walking back to the main room. “Celosia, lunch time, pen down and eyes up.”
Celosia looks up from her work, starting to quickly shuffle it over to her side. “Well, I’m almost finished anyway. It looks like you and Nix have been having fun with your painting, isn’t that right Petal?”
Nix nods, shrinking her cane down, and clipping it to her bag as Sola sits them both down at the table. “Bzzzzzzt!” She taps on her stomach a few times. “Bzzzt!”
“Well if you’re asking that politely, give me a few minutes, and I’ll have your lunch ready.” Celosia reaches out, ruffling Nix’s hair lightly with her vines. Watching as the girl relaxes into Sola’s embrace as she does, before pulling herself away to cook Nix a meal.
Sola sits down at the table, petting Nix a little bit as a distraction. “Such a good and polite girl you are. We will need to give you a fun reward for this behavior.” She giggles and holds Nix close, playfully brushing her belly. “I wonder what mistress Celosia is making for you? I bet that it is something you will really like.”
Nix shudders, pressing her stomach out as Sola’s vine snakes under her dress. Starting to rub in little circles. "Aaaaah."
Celosia grins, putting together some of Nix’s favorite chips, and a ham sandwich. Placing them down on the table, before sliding around to start rubbing Nix’s cheek. "She's just so much calmer like this, it makes my flowers want to bloom."
Sola wraps her vines around Nix’s arms and legs, letting Celosia take care of feeding her. “I know right, seeing how far Nix has come since we started gives me the greatest joy.” Sola smiles down at Nix before bringing her gaze at Celosia. “Thank you for helping Nix make the final step.”
Celosia shakes her head, quietly guiding Nix through the motions. "You don't need to thank me Sola, all of this has been for my own selfish ends, at the end of the day." She quickly places a straw in Nix’s mouth, letting her start to drink. "And it has been intensely enjoyable, every step of the way. In a way I doubt you would have been able to enjoy it."
Sola chuckles, and nods. “Yeah, I enjoy all the soft and cuddly moments with Nix too much, to push that hard. Not saying I can’t push in a pinch, but I simply get my enjoyment in a different way. Moments like this where I can just hold and love on Nix, those are exactly what I want.”
“Indeed, it’s something that I know you will overcome with time, but for now I’m happy to enjoy letting you be the soft cushion to make Nix feel safe, even when we need to work on breaking her will.” Celosia gently plucks the water bottle out of Nix’s hands. “But this definitely works for Nix, for example right now, we’re talking in affini, she can’t understand any of this conversation, yet she simply is nestling deeper into your vines, and allowing us to talk.”
Sola wiggles, and pulls Nix in a little more. “I know, before she would be squirmy and asking for context. But right now, she is perfectly at peace. Just getting to do this is such a relief.” She lets one of her vines begin to slowly drape over Nix’s hair, making small circles right into her head.
Nix squirms around with the additional pets, being pulled deeper into Sola’s chest as vines mix, and shuffle around her. Actually letting herself flow with the vines, as the cubby forms around her, rather than being presented for her to climb into. “Bzzzt!”
Celosia makes sure that Sola doesn’t close the cubby up, having it act like a little display case for their floret rather than a place for her to hide from the rest of the ship. “There we go, she can enjoy getting all the adoring looks, and maybe even some pets, that she deserves, while we walk over to Resin’s shop.”
Sola grins and nods. “I know, and I bet that Pearl will adore the display as well.” She stands up, waiting for Celosia to put away the dishes, before the pair leave. “Ah, it is really relaxing walking out of the hab freely. Maybe Nixy will see a park that looks inviting for us to play in later.”
As the group walks through the ship, Nix occasionally sticks her head out of the cubby. Cautiously looking around, only to be repeatedly met with affini she’s never met walking up, and asking to pet her. Never getting more than a little buzz out, before she’s met with pets all over her body. Celosia, and Sola both receiving several compliments on her docility, so soon after domestication, and especially without her implant.
Sola happily chats up a few of the affini, just talking about how it is all about finding the proper care that any sophont responds well to, before petting Nix herself.
Celosia meanwhile wraps her vines around Sola. Trying not to seem too protective of the pair, but instinctively wanting to back Sola up. “Some require some more complex work, but in the end, it is so rewarding to break through those walls, and bring up the floret hidden underneath everything.”
After far too many stops, both random, and Sola and Celosia very blatantly showing Nix off, to anyone, and everyone, who would listen. The group arrives at the plush shop, Resin walking through the isles, and restocking. While Pearl is hunched over her desk behind the counter, working on a plushy that appears to be a mix of a snake and a bird.
Nix stretches slightly, letting out a little squeak as she crawls up to the edge of Sola’s cubby. Starting to wave over at Pearl. Getting no response, and eventually deciding to just use her voice. Even if it does mean being teased by Pearl for it. "Aaaaaaah!"
Pearl squeaks, and looks up before a wide grin spreads across her face. “NIX!” Pearl puts down the plush she is working on, while making sure her station is safe, and clean. She then runs over, and bounces a little bit. “Hello Miss Celosia, Miss Sola, can I have Nix please?”
Sola giggles a little and crouches down, letting Nix out of her resting spot. “Of course you may, I’m sure you will figure out the fun we have been having easily enough. Have fun with Nixy.”
Pearl nods, and eagerly pulls Nix back towards her station. “How are you doing, Nix? I’m guessing you are trying a new xenodrug, and you seem to be able to move well.” She looks at Nix closely. “You didn’t call my name… how are you enjoying your W’s?”
"Bzzzzt." Nix rolls her head to the side, trying to make it look like she's groaning, as her eye twitches. Feeling a bit awkward walking away from being at most arm's length away from her owners.
"Do not let her pouting fool you, Nix has been a very good girl all day." Celosia gives Pearl a little wave, walking over to Resin, leaving Sola behind to supervise their florets.
Nix puffs her cheeks out, sitting down in the chair next to Pearl's. Really wishing that she'd bothered showing Pearl how to use, and read, morse code. "Bzzzt."
Pearl hugs Nix a little more, before sitting back down her own chair. “It is alright Nix, if you have been a good girl, I bet it has been absolutely adorable, although if I am honest, everything you do is adorable.” She turns back to her current project. “So Nix, how do you like this? Our newest custom job, and I think it is super cute.”
Nix looks over the plushy, nodding a few times as she pokes it. Eventually pausing, and turning to look at Pearl. Giving her double thumbs up, and making a small affirmation beeping noise.
Pearl giggles a little bit, leaning in to give Nix a kiss on the cheek. “Thank you cutie, I’m happy you like it.” She wiggles a little bit, rubbing her arms. “After I go through my body mods fully, I’ll be able to get custom limbs, and things that we can swap out, and I may be… debating on a few other options.” She blushes, and looks over her work. “I’m not sure if they would be going too far, but I’m figuring out what options sound good to me, and Mixtress, out of the gate.”
Nix bares her teeth, making triangle motions on them to try and communicate that she’s considering getting her teeth modified. Feeling absolutely ridiculous about being forced to play charades, just to get her point across even slightly.
Sola giggles, sitting down behind the pair as she watches Nix’s attempts. “I’m sure whatever you, and your owner, pick out will be adorable. I do have some important news, that Nix does not have the ‘words’ to explain to you right now.”
Pearl giggles, and kisses Nix on the lips playfully. “Yeah, what can I say, Nix inspired me to go for more. Honestly, I was thinking if all my limbs were removable, to maybe go for a way more committed doll base, then get some of that reptile going on with replacement limbs, like Nix is gonna have. And I am guessing the charades was sharp teeth.” She nuzzles into Nix’s neck a little, as she looks up at Sola. “So, what can’t she tell me currently?”
Sola places a hand on top of Nix’s head. "Well, we've made the decision that Nix is not going to remember her time in the Terran Comsic Navy or the forced time in the rebellion." She starts scratching right on the base under Nix’s ear, watching the girl shudder, and flop against her vines. Letting herself be taken away from the moment. "She won't forget about you, of course, but we simply can't allow these horrible memories to plague our pet."
Nix shudders, taking a deep breath. Trying to force herself to not worry about Pearl's reaction, relieved when Sola pulls her into a tight hug. As little touches are danced along her body, to help keep her calm enough not to need more intense xenodrugs. "Aaaaaaa…"
Pearl looks down with a sad smile. “Yeah, honestly, the only reason I am working to accept some of what happened, enough to eventually hold my very important memory, is because of the person who got me here. I haven’t told anyone else yet, but once I can personally hold those memories, I want my mistress to get rid of every other memory about the navy. My problem is how tied a lot of them are to what happened in my past. I do think that Nix would be happier without those though.”
“Indeed, I’m sure if it wasn’t for the sake of that memory, your owner would have made that choice for you… but Nix doesn’t have anything to gain from living with those memories, she has no attachments anywhere left that we could find.” Sola looks down at Nix’s squirming form, her vines wrapped around her florets ears, to make sure that she couldn’t hear this conversation. “Celosia feels particularly strongly about all of this, and I can not find a reason to disagree.”
Sola gently reaches out, pulling Pearl down to lay next to Nix. “I simply want to ask you to comfort her about this, to let her know that once she comes home from her implantation, you’ll still love and care for her. Even if she doesn’t remember her time in the cosmic navy.”
Pearl smiles, and begins to gently brush Nix’s hair. “Of course, the navy was horrible to each and every one of us. Much less those with disabilities.” She cuddles up close to Nix, and sighs. “I swear, I will always love and support her through everything. The implant is scary at first, but once you are on that high, you just feel all loved and special.”
“Exactly, I’m just glad to hear you taking the news well.” Sola rolls her leaves, and vines, over Nix and Pearl, acting as a blanket for the pair to cuddle under. Taking a moment to just adore the sight, before removing the vines from Nix’s ears, letting her hear everyone once again. “Alright sweetie, all the nasty stuff from last night is dealt with. And I think Pearl has something to say to you.”
Nix nods slightly, rolling over and up against Pearl’s chest. While she can’t say anything that she wants to, she simply finds herself more deeply than anything else, wishing to be held by her partner. Almost relieved that the burden of the news had not been allowed to rest on her shoulders.
Pearl hugs Nix tightly, and gives her a kiss. “I love you so much Nix, I will always be there for you. I understand the pain that the navy and the accord put everyone through, especially those who have been in your situation. You will always have me, and my mixtress, and your own mistresses, and Jason and Anthurium. You’ll never ever be alone again.”
Nix lets out a small squeak, before simply starting to buzz against Pearl’s chest. Her fingers starting to stim on Pearl’s companion dress, as she barely keeps herself from starting to nip at it as well.
Celosia taps on Resin’s shoulder, taking a few of the plushies and helping with stalking the shelf. “Hey Resin, how’s your day going?” She smiles softly, making sure to adjust each plush, to look as desirable as possible. “Nix is officially ours.”
Resin grins, and puts some more up on the shelves. “That’s great, the moment when our cuties break is always so magical.” It leans in against Celosia. “However, I have a feeling you want to tell me a little more about what happened, so please, don’t keep me in suspense.”
"We had a talk with her… and she's been struggling and in a lot of pain, because she can't allow herself to break." Celosia shakes her head, giving Resin a hug. "Not in the way she, and we, want her to, so… she will be getting her implant, and will not remember any of the last few years of her life. The cosmic navy will be entirely gone, with no way to be recovered. I was wondering if you have any recommendations or opinions, given while not exactly the same. The only reason you haven't done this is out of respect for Pearl's late friend."
Resin gives a squeeze back, thinking over everything it had to plan out in regards to Pearl. “You are right, if not for her late friend, Pearl would not remember her time there at all. Luckily she wasn’t in it for very long after the end of the war. As for Nix, she will notice the time difference between her last memory from before being taken in, and her first memory with the compact. I would be honest with her, maybe let her know that she was in the navy, and hurt very badly from it. She may have other traumas that may come to light without the navy to cover it up, and those you will have to work through, as much more memory removal could have dire consequences on the person Nix is.”
“I’m absolutely sure of that, and she’ll still remember the time she spent with Sola up to the trial. I’ll have it contextualized for her as simply her recovery after the accident. All she will know is she was hurt, and Sola helped her get better.” Celosia looks over at the group behind the counter, watching Sola pull the florets to cuddle together. “I was just intending to remove the accident, but she openly, in the best way she could manage, asked for it to all be gone. So I’ve been working intimately on the reconfiguration of her memories.”
“Alright, just know that Nix could be a little spacy when you are done. Like I said, even removing the memories of the navy, she will be able to recognize that there is some lapse in time of what she remembers. Trust me that there will be some panic over that, even if she remembers asking you to remove her memories.”
“Trust me, I’m anticipating all of it, I’m just glad we don’t need to remove everything.” Celosia finishes putting the plushies in their places, as she starts to pull Resin back towards their cuddling pets. “But I do believe by simply removing those memories, she will be susceptible to more traditional, and even softer methods, which will not only stop her from being in pain, but also help Sola.”
Resin grins a little bit, and rubs Celosia’s back. “Nix will also probably begin asking for the harder stuff more, and I could see someone like her being naughty as a way to ‘ask’. But at the same time, I bet you will have her very well trained.” Resin quiets down as they get closer to Sola, giving her a tight hug.
Celosia sits down next to Sola, reaching down to start gently petting Nix. Watching her floret start to passively buzz, while nuzzling against Pearl’s chest. “I’m absolutely sure Nix wouldn’t misbehave just to get attention. Would you petal?”
Nix buzzes a bit louder, shaking her head rapidly, before pushing it back in against Pearl’s chest. Trying to hide her flushed cheeks, and ignore the fact that she’s basically done nothing but act out this entire time, to get herself to this point.
Pearl giggles, and rubs Nix’s sides. “Oh Nix, it is fun to get in trouble like that. When Mixtress just strikes and makes me helpless using injections, it is just fantastic.” She shudders, looking up at Resin. “Sorry, just reminiscing. I still think you would enjoy it once in a while.”
“Eventually I had to stop playing into her games, when I realized it was encouraging bad behavior. No matter how absolutely adorable it may be.” Resin chuckles, starting to lightly pet Pearl. “And I do have the good news that Pearl’s mods are going to be all done, while you’re getting your implant. So you’ll be able to wake up to the sight of your adorable girlfriend with her new doll appearance.”
Pearl blushes, and halfway hides behind Nix. “Mixtress, I wanted to surprise her!”
Sola giggles, and pets both Pearl and Nix. “Well, to be fair, Nix knew you were going to get the rest, but just not when. I am sure she will be thrilled to have the perfect dolly to hug, after she gets her implant done.”
“Anyway, I can very easily add this little memory to the chopping block.” Celosia grins wide. “Infact, let’s have a little trial run, Nix. Be a good girl, and roll around to face me.”
Nix looks between the group, finding that everywhere she looks she’s only met with smirks, or a polite grin from Sola. Eventually fully rolling around to face Celosia, looking up in her Mistress’s eyes… and… and…
Celosia watches as Nix’s flustered state starts to drift away, Sola gently using her vines to support Nix, keeping her sitting perfectly still. “We’re going to use some nice class H’s to make you forget this little thing. That way you can be all surprised when you see your girlfriend.”
Pearl smiles, and looks up at Celosia, carefully avoiding her eyes. “Thank you Miss Celosia, I’ve been looking forward to her reaction.” She slowly backs away from Nix, letting Celosia give her full attention to her girlfriend.
“Of course petal, it is for the best Nix has a baseline context for the experience beforehand. As it will make explaining what she experienced easier.” Celosia pulls an injector out, slipping it into Nix’s eye flower. Watching as her expression goes from locked, to distant.
Nix blinks a few times, finding herself seated in a pile of plushies alongside Pearl. Looking around, Celosia and Sola are both sitting on the opposite side of the room, talking to one another. “Aaaaah!” She looks over at Pearl, wondering what they were doing.
"Hey Nix, have I mentioned just how cute you get when Miss Celosia gives you extra attention? It was wonderful." Pearl giggles a little bit, rolling over on the pile and cuddling up to Nix. "How do you feel, one 'ahhh' for good, two for confused, and three for not great."
"Aaah, Aaah." Nix looks around, starting to stim on her outfit. Looking around for a way to get the nervous energy welling up out. Eventually electing to grab her water bottle out of her bag, seeing it leaned up against the pile of plushies. Nipping, and nibbling, on the straw between sips.
Pearl reaches up, and emulating what she’d seen Sola do earlier, starts to slowly scratch at the base of Nix’s ear. “Well, my mistress accidentally said something that I wanted to be a surprise for you. Then Miss Celosia said she could get rid of your last minute or so of memory, and make it go away. So, now I can still have the surprise for you when it is ready.” She leans in, and kisses Nix on her cheek. “So, your first experience with hypnosis getting rid of a memory, it is strange, but it can be kind of fun.”
Nix blinks a few times, her eyes rolling up slightly as if she’s trying to think back to the now clearly missing memory, only to end up crossing her arms and huffing. “Bzzzt!” She grumbles a bit, nuzzling into Pearl’s slide. Mostly pouting to make a point, knowing that this is going to be something she’s going through in the future anyway.
Pearl makes Nix look back at her. “Nix, I know it feels a little odd, but I think going through this a few times, with smaller memories, will help you adjust better to when the big one happens.” She sighs, but frowning for a moment, before shaking her head, and going back to a smile. “Trust me, the big one will make you feel really strange for a while. For me it was about a month, but I adjusted.”
“Bzz bzzz.” Nix nods slightly, squeezing Pearl and starting to drag her partner down into the pile of plushies. Kissing her on the cheek a few times, to show off that she really isn’t all that torn up about losing the memory, especially if it means making Pearl happy.
Pearl giggles as they sink into the plushie pile, before squeaking at the kiss. "Thank you Nix, I'm excited to show off my little surprise, but it needs to be ready first. I promise, it will be ready by the time you are coming down from your implantation."
"Mhmmm." Nix squeezes Pearl a little tighter. Nuzzling her partner, and not even noticing as a shadow is cast over the pair.
Celosia’s hand comes down on the back of Nix’s head. Gently grabbing her and making her look up. "Alright petal, I'm going to let you have a little talking time with Pearl, before we go home. You've been such a good little lizard, you've really earned it." She giggles, pulling an injector out, and pressing it into Nix’s flower.
Pearl excitedly watches as the injector sinks into the flower, waiting for Celosia to pull it away before speaking. “Have I ever mentioned just how cool I think this method of injections is? Because it is really amazing to watch.” Pearl gives Nix a little hug as she is released from Celosia’s hold.
“No, you haven’t… but I’m glad you like it.” Nix sighs, relieved to have her words come out as intended, rather than just buzzes, and screams for attention. “Thank you for allowing me to speak, Mistress…”
“You’re very welcome Nix.” Celosia gives a few more playful pets, before stepping away. Grinning at her blushing floret all the while. “You just keep being a good girl. I’ll be over with Sola until you’re ready.”
As Celosia walks over to the other affini, Pearl squeezes Nix, pulling her back down into the pile of plushies. “So, aside from being adorable with me, is there anything you want to use your words to say to me?” She rubs Nix’s back, carefully tracing her spine with very light brushes of her fingers.
Nix shudders, while Pearl’s touch isn’t nearly as intense as her owners. But when being dragged along somewhere as sensitive as her spinal implant, it’s still absolutely world shaking. “I… aaaaah…” She wiggles away, just enough to make sure that Pearl won’t break her train of thought in the middle of it again.
“I wanted to… say, I love you.” Nix chuckles nervously, starting to stim on the plushies in the pile. Anxiety over Pearl’s response still bouncing around in her chest. Despite knowing better still having that lingering fear that her feelings wouldn’t be returned by Pearl. “Stars, it’s always so weird to hear that coming out of my mouth.”
Pearl squeals, and kisses Nix on the lips several times. “I love you too Nix, and I remember feeling weird saying things that I kept deep down before, but it will get more natural.” She giggles a little bit, shifting them around in the plush pile. “I’m so glad you are doing all this Nix, I promise that you will feel so much better, once you don’t have those bad memories.”
“Y-yea…” Nix nestles on top of Pearl’s lap. “It’s weird, even three weeks ago… I’d think it’s inhumane to just rip away the trauma I experienced, and… I still am unsure about it, deep in my chest.” She sighs, tucking her legs against herself. “But it’s finally not my choice, and that’s what I’ve been leaning hard on since I lost that game. I… want it to not be my choice, deep down, I wanna have a stable environment to live in, but every time I try to accept it. A new problem pops up in my head, screaming, thrashing, and telling me I’m a failure, for accepting any of this being done to me.”
Pearl sighs, nodding and squeezing Nix’s hand. “I know, it is a lot to deal with, but you are right, having that choice taken away does a lot to remove the stress of a situation. Just knowing that big decisions are not mine to make, really opens me up for freely enjoying the life I now have, and I think you will feel the same way.”
Nix simply nods, unsure if she’s unable, or simply unwilling, to continue this conversation. After another few minutes of silence, Celosia walks over to the pair once again.
“Alright petal, it’s time to head home.” Celosia gently pulls Nix out of the pile of plushies. Frowning at just how sad Nix seemed to be after only a few minutes of being allowed to speak. “And… After today, we will be keeping you on the W’s until your implantation.”
Nix hums afferminatively, unable to pull out the will or energy to actually talk. Fairly certain that Celosia wouldn’t want her to either way, simply nestling into the embrace, waiting to be put in her cubby for the trip home. Craving the feelings of safety, the small compartment provides.
Pearl smiles sadly. “We talked about feelings a lot. Starting off with us, and then onto being florets, and not having to make big choices. For us, it was pretty deep and I felt impactful, but it was also very emotional.”
Celosia nods slightly, turning away as Resin comes over to pick Pearl up. “Sola, can you make Nix her compartment? It seems our lizard is having a hard time right now.” She keeps a calm, quiet tone, as she walks up to her partner, running her hand through Nix’s hair repeatedly to keep her floret calm.
Sola coos and shifts around, eventually opening up, and taking Nix. “Of course, now come on in our cute little lizard, you can have a nice and quiet place to relax away from the world.” She guides Nix into the cubby, letting some vines pet their floret, before doing a quick check that Nix has everything. “Alright, get settled in petal, we will be home soon.”
Nix curls up, rolling her bag around, and starting to hug it as tight as she can. As a few of Sola’s vines start to press down on top of her like a blanket, the rest close up the cubby, in order to block out most of the light, and sound, from reaching her. Leaving Nix floating in the warmth of her owner's rhythm.