Blue Stripe

Day 181 - Okay Idea

by Meanderling

Tags: #cw:gore #cw:noncon #D/s #dom:female #f/f #pov:bottom #sub:female #anxiety #dom:plant #drugs #graphic_violence #Human_Domestication_Guide #hurt/comfort #medical_play #multiple_partners #nonbinary_character #ownership_dynamics #petplay #pov:top #romantic #scifi #self_harm_is_over_were_still_doing_drugs #slow_burn #transgender_characters #whoops_i_did_worldbuilding_a_little

What kind of gay idiot decides to make their first ever attempt at longform creative writing a slow burn kink romance/drama and show it to strangers? This gay idiot apparently. Fair warning I am not a fast writer and only have so much backlog so bear with me here. Thanks for reading and feel free to comment and let me know what you think! Also, if somehow you got here without reading any other HDG fics, check out the original story or you'll be real lost. Or ya know, just read a bunch of em. Also, just a blanket CW notice up front, I'm not done writing this by a long shot yet so I'll try to mention CWs before chapter but at the very minimum there will be: mentions of emotional abuse/incarceration/drug and alcohol abuse, violence, blood (both fun and non-fun), plenty of trauma-induced panic, and existential dread. Also lots of potty mouth.

December 2, 2555


A canopy of broad ochre and copper leaves wove among a dizzying lattice of graphite branches. They hung above earth strewn with the same leaves as above and a soft bed of what might've been pale gold clover. Beneath the warm roof of the trees a break formed in the broad trunks, forming a natural arch that framed an impossibly serene plane of placid water broken up only by gold flora that might have been lily pads if they weren’t shaped like sea stars. The grove hummed with alien “bird” song and gentle susurrations through black branches and smelled faintly of citrus muddled by damp earth. It was a waking dream, a world blessed by dappled sunlight and teeming fertility. And beneath that dark arch stood a lone human.


Kira drank in the vista before her, saturating her senses and letting her breath grow slow and deep. She wasn't sure how long she’d been standing there, she was doing her best to ignore time as a general rule these days. She didn’t exactly have any responsibilities to anyone but herself anymore, and had no physical needs she couldn’t meet easily within ten minutes, not that she would be counting them. She’d seen plenty of amazing new places in her last five months–six? No, five. Right? Right, five– of travel, but it was only recently that the constant gnawing feeling of running even while standing in place quieted enough to allow for rest. And yet, even without it some elusive, restless corner of her brain still stirred and spasmed, no matter how much peace she surrounded herself with. Something disturbed the water in her mind ever so slightly, sending out persistent ripples whose origins eluded her. Something gnawed at her, an itch, an ache, a membrane between her and the rest of reality, dampening it all just the slightest bit.


It was annoying. Was proper peace really too much to ask for?


She needed…something. A distraction? Yeah, distractions are good.


A peculiar idea flashed across her mind, a foolish, reckless little thing that danced on her shoulder in place of the little devil. She pulled her tablet from the inner pocket of her jacket and opened the overnet general messenger, picking through a web of channels and IDs until she was left staring at one particular username attached to one particular vessel, just above a friendly little button with “message” glaring back at her in terran english. Her finger hovered above it.


This was a very, very bad idea.


Unless…


If she kept moving, then it might be only a little bit bad. Maybe even an okay one! Everyone needed a little risk in their life every so often right? Especially if one could squeeze a few ounces of playful torment from that risk.


Her finger hit the message button and the chat window opened. She tapped what passed for the camera icon and brought the enchanting vista into frame, bending down enough to capture the horizon as it curved gently upward and narrowed into a thin vertical ribbon before taking the picture. She considered sending it without text to be extra cryptic but thought better of it. Send.


<temp.user_KI00034860S>  

[Image]
What should I see next?
– K
 
<temp.user_KI00034860S>

P.S. No snitching



The response wouldn’t be instant, if her target was still in the ass end of terran space it would take at least a little time for a message to get back and forth, even with a little hypermetric push. She turned back to the water and tried to muster more than her usual amount of patience. The anticipation chewed on her nerves and her okay idea soon turned sour again. What if she didn’t even get a message back? What if her only answer was an interceptor tearing into real space and sending capture shuttles before she could even get off the ground? What if they just sent them from somewhere on the ring itself? They could already be on their waBa-DWING!


She reopened the messenger.



<(Startographer)> KIRA?? Is that you?!? Is that a ring world? WHERE ARE YOU?!?

<(Startographer)> Nevermind, I’ll find out. Kira, you MUST come back!! Everyone misses you terribly, especially–

Kira’s face couldn’t decide whether to smirk or scowl, so it made some unpleasant thing between the two and chided to no one, “Wrong answer.” She sent the tablet sailing through the fae doorway and over the water, where it skipped twice before slipping under the surface. She took one last chance to drink in the pleasant scene before turning to walk back across the clearing from where she'd come.


Lying at the far end of the clearing was a small space craft whose form was reminiscent of an elongated teardrop, the pointed aft end formed from 5 narrow overlapping plates that tapered to its point. The craft’s entire surface was coated in a dark, flawlessly smooth material caught somewhere between metallic and organic in texture that revealed iridescent shimmers in the light of the ring’s star. Across the surface a flowing series of fractal geometric forms were traced in faceted blue lines, grouped more densely at the droplet’s nose and gradually thinning toward its tail.


Kira didn’t stray too far from the craft these days, the spectral teardrop had become her constant companion between her destinations. A year ago she couldn’t have imagined having such a marvel of elegant engineering all to herself, but engineering marvels and extravagant elegance seemed to coat every new system she’d seen since leaving terran space. Looking at the craft now it occurred to her how familiar it was all becoming, the dizzying scale and impossibility of everything she saw. Fuck's sake, she was standing on an artificial world and she had almost forgotten that fact until she looked up to take a starsdamned picture! With every passing day unthinkable things became commonplace only to be replaced by fresh unthinkable things. 


She was broken from her reverie by the sudden realization that another form stood next to her ship. Standing about nine feet tall was a mass of plant matter wound into a quadrupedal form with something resembling a humanoid torso sporting four more smaller limbs and a long, tapered head attached at what Kira assumed was its front. The plant matter itself matched what Kira had found on the ring so far, black vines tightly bound themselves together to take the place of muscle and broad leaves in familiar warm tones laid flat across large portions of the body imitating skin. Innumerable smaller vines covered in small gold leaves and delicate blue flowers wove along its back and across the back of its head in a flowing mane of flora. 


Currently it was inspecting Kira’s craft and she failed to realize she’d stopped and begun staring. Kira had seen a myriad of affini to this point but she was still getting used to how much more alien they became as she moved away from terran space. She understood consciously that the forms they could take were limitless but that didn’t stop the fascination she felt whenever she actually came across one that wasn’t either a human facsimile or a mobile shrub. She mentally added “four armed golden centaur” to the growing list in her brain and–Oh shit it’s looking at her. Shit, she’s been staring too long shit shit shit–


The affini’s four eyes widened before a ripple ran down its form and it looked down at itself, its leaves shaking and the vines in its limbs sagging slightly. It looked back up at Kira briefly before exploding into a tornado of platter matter that coalesced into a roughly terran shape, standing closer to eleven feet tall now. It once again looked up at Kira, still with four eyes and a rough face formed from black bark plates and she watched it retract one set of eyes and shift the plates of its face to allow for what was definitely supposed to be a wide smile. Kira sighed a breath she hadn't realized she was holding in. 


Oh thank the stars, this one’s a dork.


The affini took a tentative step toward Kira and she reflected the movement. She plastered on a polite smile as the two met in the middle of the clearing. The affini spoke first in a chipper androgynous tone, “Hello little one! Does that lovely ship there belong to your owner? It is quite a beauty, I cannot say I’ve ever seen that model before myself!”


Kira stumbled through her still rough local affini, “No owner, myself lonely.” Fuck that’s wrong, “Not lonely, uh… alone!” She winced internally at her poor excuse for speech and her face must have shown it. She could never hope to speak it the way affini did, she lacked the equipment for that. But some terrans had their ways of speaking it convincingly, she’d heard it. She was not yet one of them. The affini seemed to sense her discomfort and Kira could tell that if it had better control of its terran mask it would have expressed pity, which only made it all worse. The affini looked down at her hands and then its own, which had only four fingers each, and quickly produced a fifth on each hand. She realized it was still shifting pieces of itself as they spoke and figured this was its first time taking this form. The effort it was putting into making a comfortingly familiar shape did begrudgingly lift her spirits and return a little of her smile.


The affini spoke again, “Apologies, I should not have assumed! I hope this form is pleasing enough, I have yet to meet one of your people. You are a human, correct? I have heard much about your kind and the progress of your domestication!”


Kira still missed some pieces when affini spoke too quickly but gathered enough to respond, “Yes, terran. Independent.”


The affini’s eyes sparkled, “How exciting! What’s a cute little sophont like you doing so far from your home space? Is there anything in particular you’re hoping to find? Maybe someone in particular?”


More like avoiding someone in particular, she didn’t say. Instead she gave a half truth, “Exploring. Never seen this area. I am…” She couldn’t remember the right word in affini.


The affini noticed her stumbling again and tried to assist, “Lost? Excited? Adventurous?”


“Close…similar word.”


“Spontaneous?”


“No…”


“Curious”


“Yes! Curious! I am curious terran.”


The affini’s smile broadened again and it generated eyebrows in order to cock one of them, “That you are, little one! It is rare that I meet an independent sophont so ready to venture beyond what they know. Ah, forgive me, I started pestering you without so much as an introduction, I am Trifolian Fabos, 1st bloom!” They nodded toward the terran with an expectant pause.


“...Kira. You local?”


Trifolian gave an enthusiastic nod, “Indeed, I first bloomed on this ring, only a few degrees from here! I have spent some time away of course, it’s healthy for a young bloom like me to take in the splendor of our universe, or so the higher blooms always say! But I am rather fond of my home and have spent my last few years in a nearby city you’ve no doubt seen, Kehet.” Kira had indeed passed through it on her way. It was a sparkling panoply of utopian architecture traced across the land in sweeping organic grace with local flora woven seamlessly throughout, as much art installation as it was city. The affini there had called it ‘quaint’. “It is one of a number of sanctuary cities on this ring for a race of sophonts whose homeworld has tragically been rendered uninhabitable. I have always found them simply adorable! And quite the conversationalists in my exp–”


This affini’s a talker.


Kira’s eyes had started to wander back to her ship, despite her best efforts to stay tuned in to the conversation. Trifolian ended their diatribe with their own glance toward the ship, “Am I perhaps keeping you from the next leg of your journey, little one?”


Kira scrambled, “No! No, it is ok…I have time. Still… looking for next stop.”


Trifolian’s eyes twinkled again, “Oh! Have you ever seen Montari one? The station orbiting it has an exquisite view! And I’ve heard the food on board is some of the best in forty lightyears! Not that I would know personally…”


Kira turned and took a tentative step toward her ship, “Sounds pretty, will look. Thanks! Good talking to you.”


“It was lovely meeting you as well Kira!” Trifolian’s enthusiasm was infectious, Kira felt more than a little bad for being so curt. But that tablet would be tracked down sooner or later and she'd prefer to be elsewhere when it was. “Oh! And before you go, I’ve heard that Aceri Palmora’s path of the budding tongue is among the best guides to the affini language for self taught fl–sophonts, and surely it will be translated to terran by now… I hope it isn’t too presumptuous of me…” 


The affini’s eyes dropped and Kira recognized nervousness in the way its leaves sporadically rippled. Ugh why did this one one have to be a harmless dork… a year ago such a suggestion would’ve coaxed a generous series of fuck yous from her but now…ugh, she was getting too soft.


“Thanks, will look in to it!” She gave a brief but genuine smile, the sort that actually involved one’s eyes, before turning and continuing to her ship. As she approached, a section of the blue filigree on the side facing her rippled with light and the surrounding surface split on hidden seams into a series of panels that unfurled into a door. A few more long panels on its underside descended silently to form steps for more vertically challenged pilots. She only made it up one before Trifolian spoke again.


"Oh and Kira! If you tire of being lonely on your travels, I come to this grove rather frequently, so you know where to find me~. And please travel safely, it's a big universe for such a cute little thing as you~~!"


Aaaand there was the flirting.


She turned in time to catch a clumsy wink from the affini with a freshly generated eyelid and chuckled to herself, "I will remember that!”


The interior of Kira’s ship was not spacious by affini standards, which meant it was plenty spacious by her standards. Of course, decades of squeezing through hallways that felt like glorified air ducts aboard overpopulated ships and stations that were one bad accident away from being derelict had skewed her standards considerably. She made her way to the cockpit and into the smaller of the two chairs. 


She began her ship's ignition sequence and was greeted by the unnervingly quiet, almost soothing hum that went against everything life as a spacer had taught her about starships. She flipped to her navmap to search for "montari" and moments later the ship gently rose above the grove. The five tapered plates of the droplet’s tail unfurled and rotated counter to a second set hidden beneath in a blooming flower of indestructible alloy and pulsing blue energy, yet another agonizingly graceful display of affini power that had become just another part of Kira’s days. She placed one hand on the sublight thrust controls and another on the FTL drive primer and gave the golden ring world a final fond glance.


“Alright Rhia, let’s go exploring!”


And in a ribbon of humming light, Kira was gone.

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