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outstretched ... kissing him lovingly...
He shut it off, clamped it from his mind. A memory! A memory that made
no sense at all. A tremor of fear ran along his spine and trembled in
his flesh. What did it mean? What was happening to him?
"Nick?" It was Beth. "What is it, Nick? You look pale and frightened."
"Nothing. We'll go away."
She beamed. "I know just the place. The cabin. Far up in the mountains.
No one will know we're there. We'll learn to love each other again."
"You have to work," he pointed out.
She nodded. "That's true, still _you_ could go up there and try to
puzzle this all out. I can come up in the evenings, and on weekends."
"Might be a good idea," he admitted, thinking that at least, he'd be
safe from prying eyes.
"Then it's settled. You go sit somewhere and I'll get things packed."
She whisked away, almost running up the stairs to pack some things for
him. He walked to the kitchen, without turning on a light, and poured
himself a glass of water. Outside, through the window, he could see the
twilight fading into evening, the heavy purple clouds of night sweeping
steadily across the sky. A star winked later and he knew it. Venus. He
stood there in the darkness and picked out many of them as they
flickered into being. Mars. Sirius, Vega and others. There were...
* * * * *
... She came into his arms and talk was insignificant and quite
unnecessary. The soft, white arms wound about his neck, tugging fingers
pulled playfully at his hair and she smiled at him. His lips moved down
against hers and they were lost in themselves. He could feel the taut
pressure of her breasts playing against his chest and the firm roundness
of her thighs working against his.
Her strong fingers worked against the muscles of his shoulders, pulling
him down onto the cottony moss beneath the strange tree. The small
litheness of her body molded into his and his hands stroked her breasts
beneath the filmy cloth that covered them. Her hands moved upward to the
straps that swept over her shoulders and pulled them down. His eager
fingers helped her, working the straps down until the firm mounds of her
breasts lifted their rubbery, coral tipped nipples toward the sky. His
fingers worked them, kneaded the warm muscles, while his mouth worked on
hers. When he had released her lips, she pulled his face down into the
twin cushions of her breasts. His hand moved against the flesh of her
* * * * *
It was gone. Like that. A sudden flickering memory of some long vanished
event that might have given him some hope. It had been fantastic again,
the strange colors and the weird landscape, but he wanted it despite
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