She really wanted him.

“I have had time. I thought you were pretty great the first time we met. I’ve wanted you since.  I wasn’t going to ask.”

“When did we meet?”

“The evening of the flight, in the hospital. I was struggling to keep it together. I knew it was bad. I was crying. You looked over at me, reached out, took my hand and held it. I realized this was a guy who was hurt and hurting as bad as I was and he was trying to help me. At that moment knew I wanted to get to know you and was pretty sure I wanted to spend my life with you.”

“I looked like something out of a dog fight.”

“I couldn’t have looked any better.”

“You looked good to me.  Do you remember what you said when I took your hand?”

“No.”

“You thanked me for being with you. Then you started telling me how important what we did was to the country and how you thought the pilots of the transport were so great. When I hit a low and said something about my legs you told me anyone who flew like that could do anything He tried. I need someone like that.”

He opened a suit pocket, took out something, reached over, took her left hand and slipped the item on her finger. It was a plain band with a small stone that was flush with the band. With one movement she unsnapped her belt and a pushed herself on his lap and kissed him. The moment was broken when Elena quipped, “Back in the seat belt. Docking in five minutes. We have first time pilots up here. It isn’t good to distract them.”

Deede obediently returned to her seat as the two pilots chuckled. She continued to hold Lauren’s hand as if he would get away if she let go.

Alexis deGaulle and Martin Bach welcomed them and they went to work. By the end of their EVA they had seventeen missiles on line. The undefendable black hole was shrinking even more.

Check the end of chapter 1 or my site for more chapters or stories by

Ralph Brandt

The Perfected Astronauts

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