CHAPTER FIVE - DAWN AND DUSK
"ANARION!" Nico called as he burst through the doorway of their room and flicked on the light switch. "Are you up yet? You need to get to the launch bay! The Jump's going to start real soon!"
Anarion was still recovering from his orgasm. His body was limp and warm until Nico's ear-piercing scream of his name. He jerked fully awake and clutched the sticky sheets to his body. The much smaller man sniffed the air and turned red. The smell of cum hung heavy in their room.
"Oh, Anarion! I -- I -- didn't mean -- I --ah -- so sorry! I'll leave you!" Nico made a stiff little bow. His dark brown hair flopped over his wide forehead as he dipped low. Then he turned on his heel to leave as fast as he had come.
"Wait! Nico!" Anarion grimaced as he scrubbed the tacky, drying cum from his belly. When the MedTek froze in mid-stride, he added, "I'm ... ah, done."
"Oh, well, that's -- uhm, good?" Nico's voice rose at the end, clearly questioning his statement.
Doesn't he ever touch himself? Come to think of it, I've never heard him or smelled anything in the room. Maybe he doesn't. He's still rather young yet though teenaged boys normally think about sex all the time. I know I did.
Nico turned around to face him. His freckled cheeks were still stained crimson and his head was lowered. He looked all of his sixteen years.
Actually, he looks younger than that.
Nico was only 5'4" with a slender build. His head looked too large for his pale stem of a body. But that made sense. It would have to be large to accommodate his incredible brain. Nico had more degrees than Anarion could count. He was the youngest member of the crew and could have held any position onboard ship, but he was doing a medical rotation this term.
"I'm too young for anyone to take me seriously in command," Nico had explained. "Besides medicine has always fascinated me. I want to pick up firsthand experience. And the amazing things I'll be able to do in the lab with specimens you bring up from the planets will be well worth it."
Nico's open nature had only been one reason that they had become friends. Anarion had taken Nico under his wing initially after he'd walked into the starboard bathroom of the ship to find Nico huddled in the corner, naked and bleeding like a wounded fawn, while three burly Marines had circled him, arguing who would be first to take the boy's virgin ass. Anarion had pounded each of them into a bloody pulp. No one had touched the MedTek again and Nico had adored Anarion ever since. Even after Anarion told him he was on medicine.
And what the medicine was for. He never flinched. Not once. Never even touched his neck when I showed him my fangs. Instead, he wanted to touch them. The blood suppressors and me are his toys.
Nico had even improved the suppressant's effects, making it last longer and curb the hunger more fully. Now Nico was scuffing one boot on the ground and looking at everything but Anarion.
"So the fact that I like human blood doesn't phase you, but catch me after jacking off and you're all a mess," Anarion laughed. He wanted to make light of this. Maybe it was the memory of those men that was making Nico so shy.
"It's just ... it's something new. I've never seen you do that. I thought you didn't!" The MedTek confessed.
"Sit down and stay awhile. You're making me nervous, hovering over there." Anarion gestured towards Nico's empty bed.
Nico walked over and thumped down. He swung his legs back and forth. A hint of his usual bright smile had appeared and he was looking at Anarion with interest.
I guess this will probably be another thing for him to dissect in that clever brain of his.
"I am really sorry, Anarion. As I said, I hadn't seen you do that before so it never occurred to me that you might be ... uhm, otherwise involved? I thought you were oversleeping!" Nico said.
"You didn't really see me," Anarion pointed out. "I was done by the time you came in." He stood up. The sheet dropped off of him. Nico took a quick glance at Anarion's body as if he wondered if the masturbating had changed something about him.
"So ... uhm, clearly you do ... ah ..." Nico pinked into silence.
"Upon occasion. But it's too dangerous most times. With people present that is," Anarion said.
"The urge to bite?" Nico guessed.
Anarion nodded. Hoping to stave off more conversation on this topic, he went over to the dresser where there was a bottle of water and a towel. He soaked the towel and quickly cleaned off his belly, cock and thighs. He felt Nico's eyes on him and wondered what the boy saw. He looked up at the mirror above the dresser.
Anarion was six feet tall with a muscular yet lean build. His dark blond hair was closely shorn to his head per military regulations. None of the Kin's long lockes for him. He had a strong, defined jaw, high cheekbones, a full mouth and large hazel eyes. His gaze met Nico's in the mirror.
"Do I look different than you thought?" Anarion asked.
Nico pinked and began pulling pilly lint balls off the blanket he was sitting on. "You're as beautiful as a Kin."
Anarion snorted. "Space must be getting to you, Nico."
The MedTek swung his legs faster. "It's not just me who thinks so, you know. A lot of people do. I heard that even your Kin trainer Dorn liked you."
"Dorn?" Anarion squawked. How on Earth had Nico heard about that? "Who told you? It had to be Oakland. You shouldn't listen to him. He's been hit one too many times in the head."
"He said you didn't respond, but Dorn was totally into you," Nico continued as if he hadn't heard Anarion. "Why didn't you go with Dorn? He's a Kin. It would have been safe, wouldn't it?"
Anarion was the one to blush this time. His mouth opened, but nothing came out. He had never told Nico about his feelings for Abaddon. It was insane what he felt. He knew that.
But it won't go away. It only grows.
Faced with Anarion's mouth-opened silent stare, Nico flushed and ducked his head. "I'm so sorry! Sometimes I ask things I shouldn't. I really should just shut up sometimes --"
"Nico, it's okay! Really. Seriously. It's fine," Anarion managed to get out. "It's a good question. But the thing is ... I didn't know Dorn was interested at the time so ... that's probably why I didn't really pursue it."
He knew how lame his excuse sounded, but he hoped it came off as slightly more sincere than it felt. Because the truth was that it was a lie. Dorn had told him how he felt. Only Anarion couldn't respond in kind. He pressed the front of the dresser and the drawer silently opened revealing his form-fitting gray uniform. It was a one-piece lycra suit that hugged his body from his neck down to his wrists and feet. It would fit well in the Teklan suit he would be putting on at the launch bay. The suits were gifts from the Kin, but they were also necessary to Jump in. They were made to withstand the many dangers of the homeworlds. Dorn had been the one to present Anarion his first suit and to reveal to him something else as well.
As he got dressed, Anarion remembered that the Kin had asked him to come to his rooms after their training session. Anarion had thought that strange, but intriguing. Though he and Dorn had gone out many times or stayed after practice to talk, he had never been to the Kin's quarters and was curious about them. They were in the Madana Spike, one of the tallest buildings in the San Angelles Megalopolis. The living room had a curving wall of windows that let the viewer see clear from east to west.
"I like to watch the Sun rise and set," Dorn had said in explanation as Anarion stared out the tinted windows.
"But if the tinting were to fail or the glass to break and you didn't have your suit on ..." Anarion broke off. He swung around to face Dorn. "You like living dangerously."
The Kin was leaning against the couch. "Yes, I suppose that's true. I never wear my suit in here and I find myself nearly plastered to those windows. I guess I must have a deathwish. But it's been so long since we spent any time onworld that I find myself fascinated with watching the Sun from here every morning and evening."
In fact, Dorn wasn't wearing his suit then. He had on a white long-sleeved t-shirt and black pants. His feet were bare and his long silver hair was undone and still damp. He looked to have come out of the shower. He was scrubbed clean from the training session.
"So what's up?" Anarion asked after the silence had stretched too long.
"Today is a special day," Dorn said.
Anarion's eyebrows raised. "What's special about it?"
"Your last day of training was today. You passed, Anarion. You're a Ruin Jumper," Dorn said softly.
He gasped. "You're serious? But you never said -- you just -- I thought --"
Dorn walked over to him and grasped his shoulder. He squeezed it softly. "You've done so well. So very well. You have no idea how proud I am to have had you as my student. I know that you will be the best Ruin Jumper out there."
"Thank you! God, thank you so much!" Anarion knew he was beaming. But he couldn't stop the smile from breaking across his face.
"It means so much to you, doesn't it?" Dorn asked softly.
"It means everything!" Anarion said.
And it did. He intended to be the best Ruin Jumper there was. Because then he would get his chance to serve aboard the Abyss. He's earn his place on Abaddon's crew and then the Kin Commander would see that he wasn't that messed up kid anymore. He had control of himself. Abaddon might come to regret leaving him like he had. He might even come to care for Anarion. Anarion swallowed hard. There were tears in his eyes. He blinked them rapidly away.
Dorn watched his reaction without saying anything, giving his shoulder a final squeeze, before he went over to the side table and lifted up a disk that was as large around as a grapefruit, but thin as a sheet of paper. It was a deep blue. He placed it in Anarion's hand.
"This is ... this is a Teklan suit!" Anarion said.
"Yes. All you need do is to press the disk against your chest and the suit will emerge and cover you completely," Dorn explained. "This suit will protect you on our worlds, Anarion. It will give you an edge when you need it."
Anarion stared down at the reflective piece of metal then he grinned up at Dorn. "This is really happening. I'm a Ruin Jumper. I'm ... shit, this is awesome."
Dorn smiled back and then his smile died. His silvery eyes became filled with an emotion that Anarion didn't recognize at first. He realized it was tenderness when Dorn's mouth descended on his. The Kin's lips were soft. They glided silkily against his own. Dorn's tongue flickered out and licked between Anarion's lips. Anarion opened them without thought and the Kin's tongue was inside his mouth, claiming it.
Anarion stood there stupidly. His only thought was that if Kin weren't supposed to touch without permission, what about kissing? Shouldn't there be a special protocol for this? Dorn tried to meld their bodies together. His hard cock pressed against Anarion's hip finally had the human Jumper moving. He broke the kiss as he stumbled back.
"Anarion?" Dorn asked. His face was filled with longing. His incisors were extended slightly and touched the bottom swollen lip.
"Why? What?" Anarion couldn't find words.
"I thought ... you became aroused so often with me. And our talks. I thought ..." Dorn shook his head. His platinum hair covered his face for a moment.
Anarion wanted to protest. He had only gotten aroused because Dorn reminded him of Abaddon at times. But he had never pursued the other man. Never made himself available.
But why not? Why shouldn't I have this? He's beautiful and my friend.
"Have I misread you so completely, Anarion?" Dorn's voice was soft. He made no move to come near.
Anarion felt the setting sun on his back. Soon night would fall and the soft lighting in the Kin's rooms would come on. He could imagine them both stripped down and tangled with each other on the couch. Their cocks would press together and Dorn would kiss him long and deep. He would be held against the other man's chest. It would be fun and safe and wonderful. But his stomach knotted and he felt sick, too, at the thought of being touched by someone other than Abaddon.
"I -- I ... can't," Anarion whispered. "It's not you."
Dorn's eyebrow rose at that. "Please do not patronize me --"
"I'm not!" Anarion's hands fisted at his sides. "There's something wrong with me. I -- I should want this. You. I do but ..." Another twist in his gut. Where there was white hair, there should be red. Where silver eyes, there should be green.
Dorn's forehead furrowed and he approached Anarion with one hand outstretched like he was a frightened animal that might bolt at any moment. "Tell me what's wrong."
"I can't! I don't know!" Anarion gripped his hands into fists. "It's been over ten years and he's still in my head ..."
Dorn frowned. "Who?" Anarion tried to turn away, but Dorn caught his chin. "Who has hurt you like this?"
"Not hurt me. I ... dammit!" Anarion's whole body trembled. Admitting his feelings to Dorn for the Kin Commander would show just how pathetic he really was. Would the Kin laugh in his face? It was so preposterous.
"Who is this that has such a hold over you?" Dorn asked.
Anarion took in a deep breath. "Abaddon."
There was silence between them for long moments. Dorn didn't even blink. His silver eyes stared into Anarion's for endless amounts of time before the human had to look away.
"So he's done it. And when you were a child. A defenseless child," Dorn breathed.
Anarion blinked. The Kin had released him and turned away. He shook his head.
"Abaddon didn't do anything to me," Anarion insisted. "He was just ... kind. He offered to take me on the Abyss, but then I -- I did something that turned him away." The guilt over his actions in nearly attacking his mother washed over him anew.
Dorn gave out a humorless laugh. "You think he left you behind because of something you did?"
"Why else?" Anarion asked. He heard the childish whine in his voice and snapped his mouth shut.
"Why else indeed?" Dorn's voice was filled with anger.
The Kin was known for his mercurial mood changes. Anarion braced for one of those. He had turned Dorn down and revealed something that had angered him.
"This is my problem. With Abaddon, I mean. I've just never ... really gotten over him and I -- I wasn't expecting this between us," Anarion said as he gestured between them.
"No, of course not. He has bound you to him," Dorn whispered.
"Bound me -- no, no, he's just ... hard to forget." Anarion ran a hand through his hair. Abaddon permeated his life. He couldn't imagine being with another. He could never truly love them like he should. His heart was the Kin Commander's.
When Dorn didn't respond further to him, Anarion realized it was time to go. His heart ached that he had hurt their friendship by giving off signals that he was available when he truly wasn't.
"I'm sorry about all of this. Really, I am," Anarion said. "I'll go and -- and let you be."
Dorn didn't respond nor turn towards him. Feeling sick about that, Anarion slowly walked over to the door of Dorn's quarters. He held the disk that was his Teklan suit tight in one hand. All the joy he'd had in getting it was washed away. He waived his hand over the sensor plate when suddenly Dorn was at his back, grabbing his wrist.
"Anarion, he isn't what he seems, you know," Dorn whispered in his ear. The Kin's breath was hot against his skin. "I've been on more of our homeworlds than most Kin. I've seen things. Read files. Looked into homes and found journals. There are things about our past, the Kin's past, that Abaddon isn't being honest about. Terrible things."
Anarion shuddered at the intensity in Dorn's voice. His wrist ached as the other man didn't release his hold. "Dorn, please, let me go."
The Kin suddenly drew back. "I'm sorry, Anarion. I didn't mean to hurt you. I ... I've never wanted to hurt you. Just the opposite."
Anarion's head hung down. "I'm sorry I can't feel the same way."
Dorn gave out that humorless laugh again that grated on Anarion's ears. "It's not your fault. You truly have no choice in the matter. Abaddon took that from you."
Anarion jerked around to look at him. "He's not bad! He helped me, Dorn!"
Dorn's silvery eyes narrowed, but then he shook his head. "I know you believe that, but what he really did was to help himself. That's why you want to be a Ruin Jumper, isn't it? To get to him?"
Anarion wetted his lips. "They say he's going to let a human Ruin Jumper on the flagship eventually. I plan to be that one. I'll earn my way on."
Dorn caressed Anarion's face. "Yes, I'm sure you will. Only ..."
"Only what?" Anarion asked sharply. He didn't like this negative talk about Abaddon. He didn't like this feeling that he was standing on the edge of a precipice and if he just allowed himself to fall forward he'd see how far the bottom really was from where he stood.
"It takes a specific type of person to rule the Kin as long as he has," Dorn said. "A certain type of passion mixed with ... ruthlessness. Don't forget the latter, Anarion."
"You don't know him like I do," Anarion said. He felt slightly ridiculous saying that as he had only been in Abaddon's presence once yet he felt like he knew the Kin Commander down to his bones.
Dorn smiled. "After all those horrible things your father tried to put in your head about us, you're somehow able to not see us as monsters. Especially Abaddon ..."
"Abaddon was the one who showed me the Kin aren't as my father said," Anarion pointed out. "I wish you could understand ... God, I wish I could explain this!"
"You don't need to. I know," Dorn said. He drew back further and allowed Anarion access to the door again.
Anarion frowned. "How do you know, Dorn?"
Dorn's face twitched into a sad smile. "Would you believe I read about such reactions as yours?"
Anarion's temper had flared up then. He wasn't like anyone else. His relationship with Abaddon's wasn't something that had been written up like a mental disease. He had stormed out and had never seen Dorn again. Until this mission.
Do I want to see Dorn again? Will he be angry or will he have forgotten any feelings he had for me?
"Anarion?" Nico stood up and tucked his hands around his back, looking at the other man brightly.
"Sorry, Nico. Just thinking," Anarion answered as he pulled on his boots.
"Well, you have to get your mind back to the present. Because it's adventure time! Are you ready to go down to an alien world, unseen by any human eyes before yours? Are you prepared to face countless dangers and risk losing friend and limb alike?"
Anarion's eyebrows crawled into his hairline while his mouth threatened to twitch into a smile as Nico went on.
"Are you certain that you are strong enough, smart enough and fast enough to face the traps and tricks of dead Kin?" Nico rose up on his tippy toes as he said the last, "And are you confident enough to face all of this with Lord Abaddon watching?"
Anarion froze. His mouth went dry. "What did you say?"
Nico's brown eyes shone. "Didn't they tell you? Boy, they never tell us MedTeks anything and here I know something you don't! I mean --"
"NICO!" Anarion modulated his voice when Nico's eyes went as wide as saucers. "What did you say about Lord Abaddon?"
Nico smiled hugely as he swung his body forward and back in excitement. "He'll be there. Lord Abaddon will be on Talos IV."