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I woke in starlight, and heard my breath hiss out as I realized I was aboard the shuttle that had been so much a part of my dreaming. Perhaps, then, I was dreaming. still….?

Niaan -!”

The cry rose within me, and broke from me – and I felt Mother and Father, rousing themselves from their own dreaming, readying themselves to meet my needs if they were able.

I was alone in their large bed, the sheets slipping cool against my sweaty skin, and ahnstav stirred within me. I shivered as I imagined Niaan, my own, once more wearing only the light of the stars, her skin glowing, tempting my fingers.

I trailed them in the air above her, feeling her, tracing the first hints of the promised curves that stirred my blood to sparking embers, and her eyes glowed, silvered blue, warm, sleepy, capturing me…

I dared to touch my fingertips to her lips, and she nipped and suckled – and then our bodies were straining to match instincts and desires they weren’t yet ready for – I could smell her arytana, as though I was back with her inside the woven-vine bower…

I stretched outward, and inward, at once, not certain how I was able to do this, only that I wanted nothing other than to be with her thus, forever, to be certain that she was truly more than my fevered dreamings…


A faint sighing whisper, like the call of an unseen silverbird through the thin air of the desert, and I stilled myself, afraid to breathe, almost, unless I lose the sense of her.

~~Always touching – ?~~

~~And always touched.~~

No, it was no dream. We touched, as Promised, with Everdeep no match for what breathed and pulsed between us, no matter how dimly perceived. No, she was not a dream. She was my reality.

I could feel her – could look directly to the point in the deep carpet of space – the one point that led to her…

I wanted that point, wanted to go where she was, this moment –

But it could not be now…

No, not now. The sense of her was fading, as wisps of steam upon the Forge. ~~But as soon as I am able to choose for myself, I will come for you, Niaan…~~

From far too far away, too far to reach, I felt the echoes of her answer. ~~I await you.~~

Then Mother and Father were with me, tending me without blocking my view of the stars, and, with their ministrations, reality shifted, and she was small and curled in the deeps of my soul….

But, when I fell back into sleep, later, after food, and drink, it was with the promise of the future held within me, and in the glow of the stars that would one day lead me to her…