Star Crossed on TWCS
Star Crossed on AO3
I paced the length of my quarters that I was sharing with Maralice. The low hum of the ships engine reverberated through my body and the stars streaked by, looking like Rishna flies from my home world. I remember capturing the flies, keeping them in a jar and staring at them with my brother, Charanel. They glowed beautifully, lighting up my room. It was such a time of innocence and happiness. A time when my father was still with us and I did not understand the cruelty of war.
The door chimed. I walked to open it. I was greeted by the red-haired woman with the tail. “Greetings, Empress,” she said gruffly. “Dr. Halé wanted me to check on you. She was called away for a medical emergency.”
“I’m fine, Commander Braxas,” I smiled. “The accommodations are quite luxurious. I’ve never seen such a ship with rooms like these.” I gestured for her to enter and she looked around my new home with appraising eyes. “Is everything alright?”
“Sorry, Empress. It’s in my nature to constantly look for a threat. Captain Cullen received explicit instructions that you are not to be harmed,” she said, smiling sheepishly. Commander Braxas was the head of the security team on the Volvo. It made sense for her to worry about my safety. Though, at the mention of the captain, my heart stammered against my ribs. I could feel my spots luminesce and my eyes darken. Why am I reacting to this man’s name like he was my mate? It made no sense. I never met Captain Cullen and he was a human. “Empress? Are you okay? You look a little flushed.”
“I’m fine, Commander,” I replied, trying to calm my body down. I needed to get these reactions under control. Alice noticed my spots glowing as we were walking to our quarters.
“Empress…” Commander Braxas began.
“Please, call me Bella,” I smiled. “I’m not an empress on this vessel, just a passenger.”
“Only if you call me Victoria.” I nodded, giving her the standard Cygnarian greeting. Victoria mimicked my actions clumsily. “Bella, if you need anything, you can access the computer at this terminal.” She pressed a few buttons and a screen lit up. “The cultural databases of all of the Federation worlds are on here, including literature, music and art. You can also send communications out to your home world at the same terminal.”
“The journey to Lapus is long. We’ve never been able to communicate with ships along the borders,” I whispered.
“We have a very strong communications array along with many Federation satellites and space stations that can relay your hails,” Victoria explained. She reached into her pocket, handing me two brooches. “These are communicators. The captain wants you to wear these at all times. One is for you and the other is for your envoy. They clip to your clothing. To make them work, just tap it and ask for the person you want to speak with.” Victoria tapped her communicator. It chirped. “Braxas to Cullen.”
“Cullen here,” came a velvety baritone voice.
“I’m contacting you to inform you that the empress has received her communicator,” she said.
“Thank you, Commander,” Cullen said. “Are the Empress and the Envoy linked into our computers?”
“I’m going over that now, sir,” Victoria said. “Anything else, Captain?”
“No, Commander. Excellent work,” he replied, a smile evident in his voice. “Cullen out.” I stared at the tiny brooch on her chest, wanting, yearning to hear more of the captain’s voice. This is why you are not to interact with males, Nirabelle.
Star Crossed cover created by Mina Rivera! Thank you so much!!
Alphan capital on Lapus
Lapus capital city