A Chapter by DB Heinemann

Shorter, plot moving chapter debuting the awesome Ruihi


Ryan almost didn’t wake up in time. He just barely heard his alarm clock in the other room. He grogged and stretched as he tried to remember where he was. He was sitting. He remembered sitting. Warm fabric started to slip off of him, exposing him to the unpleasantly cool air. He looked to find that there was a blanket on him. He didn’t remember putting a blanket on himself. He remembered reading Nalie that story. And feeling too lazy and sleepy to get up after he had finished reading the story. He remembered staring off into space and thinking about Shoky. It gets a little fuzzy after that. He recalled a monkey slapping him with a fish and surfing the Milky Way but that might have been a dream.

He noticed Nalie was still soundly sleeping in her bed. Ryan quietly got up and tiptoed out of the room. She stirred only a little as he slid the door closed. Not limited to the amount of noise he could make now, Ryan walked a little more heavily towards his room. He told his alarm clock to shut up and pulled his handy dandy pilot clothes on. At least I’m not blinded by some stupid false sense of security! Ryan flinched. He stared at the floor. Maybe if you spent the time to get to know her instead of skirting around the room, accusing her of things with no basis, you’d see her innocence. Ryan sighed as he proceeded to the kitchen. He grabbed a box of Tofe-o’s and poured them into a ceramic bowl. They clinked, clinked, clinked- clink- clinging to your mommy government and believing all the stories she tells you.

The box of cereal was returned to the shelf. Ryan found himself sitting at his table, alone. His spoon moved to his mouth to feed him his food. In- Pokokohua -swallow, in- child- swallow, in-  upoko tamati- swallow. In- Do you even have any sense at all?- swallow. Ryan shuddered. He didn’t feel hungry anymore. He threw the remaining food in a compost bin. The bowl found itself in the sink being rinsed. It squeaked, “You want to leave a human here by herself just so you can go to some stupid festival!” as Ryan rubbed it.

Ryan put his bowl down and stared at the window above the sink. He could see the almost random rows of pod houses, lined up towards Zenon Central in the distance. Tall buildings made like mountains and trees, towering over the little pods in the distance. It was a misty morning. It’s always misty, foggy. Like a rainforest. There’s so much moisture in this region. But if Ryan focused his eyes just right, thoughts of his soggy region would disappear and be replaced with his reflection staring back at him from the window. “How can I trust a human over my own government?” it asked him without moving its lips. “You already trust her more than you trust your own government,” it continued.

More than you trust me, Ryan finished. More than you trust me. More than you trust me. He felt his tongue in his mouth. He tasted something bitter. It felt like a snake was squeezing his brain. He tried to breath. The sigh redirected his focus to the reflection of his couch. It wasn’t all pastel yellow. There was a dark mass on it. The realization of its presence replaced Ryan’s sorrow and regret with confusion. He turned to get a better look at it.

The dark mass was from a dark blanket draped over a sleeping body with long, dark hair: Shoky. Ryan inhaled sharply. She must have come back after he fell asleep. He wondered if she was the one who put the blanket on him. No, he wondered what he should do. Yes, what should he do about this development? He didn’t want to wake her but he felt sorry about the whole mess. Why did she come back?

I’m not going to let you leave a human in my house unattended. Oh, Ryan glanced at the guest bedroom. Someone had to watch Nalie while he went on a week long flight. Well, that was considerate of Shoky. Ryan tried not to be disappointed that she wasn’t here because of some love or dedication or even better, forgiveness of him. At least she didn’t abandon him with this strange child. That really wouldn’t have been cool.

Ryan’s feet decided to make the decision for him once more. They gently guided him towards the couch. Sleeping people are so much less intimidating. All their flaws and annoying habits are melted away and replaced with the innocence they were born with. Ryan knelt down and admired his gunon. He hoped she was still his gunon, at least. She was curled up like a hairless baby which really added to the unintimidating aspect of it all. He smiled softly as he brushed away the hair covering her face. How could he hurt anyone as wonderful as Shoky? It made him feel ashamed.

Hand still on her head, he leaned forward to kiss her forehead- as was his custom. Though he was sure to make this one especially deep. “I’m sorry, Shoky,” he whispered. “I still love you. I’ll see you in a week, ok?”

Shoky continued to sleep and didn’t reply. Feeling lame, he got up and left. He suddenly felt unwelcome in his home. He barely noticed the misty air welcoming him to the morning. He did, however, realize he had forgotten to call a cab before he left. He sighed, back facing his house, as he got out his phone and dialed for one. After doing so, he heard a shuffle of some sort. Before he could react, something rammed into his back. Arms swung around his sides and held him tightly, lifting him slightly off the ground.

Ihu!” Ryan gasped as he tried to escape his captor.

“I’m sorry, too, Ryan,” his kidnapper told him.

“Shoky,” Ryan breathed, trying to put his heart back in his chest. “You scared the skita out of me.”

But Shoky ignored him. “I’m sorry for dragging you into this. And not listening to you. And not thinking things through. And-”

“Shoky, put me down,” Ryan told her. “I don’t like it when you pick me up.”

“Right,” Shoky put him back down. Ryan brushed himself off and turned to look up at Shoky.

“It’s ok,” Ryan told her, taking her hands. “I’ve been the butthead in this instance. You’re right. We need to get Nalie home. She’s just a kid. She should be with her family, not here.”

Shoky looked at him strangely.

“What?” Ryan asked her.

“Nothing,” Shoky replied but continued to look at him strangely. “Are you feeling alright? Are you a robot? Did you hit your head? Is there something I’m missing here?”

Ryan huffed. “Ok, don’t make such a big deal out of it. I’m not human. I’m allowed to gracefully change my opinion in response to new information.”

“Oh, and what new information is that?” Shoky asked.

“I’m still a little suspicious of her! But…” Ryan shrugged his hands. “I don’t see what harm she could do if we’re watching her the whole time in my house. It’s not like she can do any major hacking from my home computer. And…”

Shoky raised her lack-of-eyebrows at him.

Ryan sighed, giving in. “She does seem pretty alright, I guess.”

Shoky smiled widely. “I’ll take it.” With no further prompting, she grabbed the back of his head and kissed him. Ryan sank into it. When she pulled away, she told him, “Come back in one piece.”

“I will, probably,” Ryan told her back. “I should be back on the 78th at 4 o’clock. I expect you to be ready to go by the time I get home and we can leave right after that. You can handle ordering the rental and all that?”

Shoky nodded. “Yessir.

Ryan’s cab had been waiting for him since Shoky put him back on the ground. Ryan stepped towards it. He hesitated before turning back to Shoky. His face scrunched up as he tried to figure out how to say it.

Shoky sighed. “I’ll keep out of trouble. Don’t worry. I got this.”

Ryan smiled weakly. He wanted to believe her. No, he will believe her. That was his job right now. He had to learn from past mistakes. He had to trust her. He nodded. “Ok,” he smiled. “I’ll see you, then. Tell Nalie I said haera.”

Shoky beamed at him. “Will do.” They waved at each other as Ryan got inside the cab and drove away. He watched as Shoky disappeared in the distance. God, he hoped she didn’t screw everything up.

* * *

“Ready to fly?” Ryan’s co-pilot, Ruihi, asked him. He was a medium green, short and beefy man with short and beefy dreadlocks.

“Ready as ever,” Ryan sighed.

“That doesn’t sound ready,” Ruihi said before bellowing, “I said, ARE YOU READY TO FLYYYYYYYYYY?”

Fan, yes, geez,” Ryan’s head retreated into his shoulders, hoping to cover his ears. “We’re in the cockpit, there’s no need to shout.”

“I’m just pumped,” Ruihi responded ecstatically. “I’m ready to ride this stogey to the moooon!”

Ryan raised a brow at him. “Do you know what a stogey is?”

“It’s awesome is what it is,” Ruihi continued unfazed.

“Is this your first time flying out of atmo?” Ryan questioned him further.

“Nah, I been doin’ this about... 20 years,” Ruihi responded, his nostalgia voice thankfully quieter than his normal voice. “Last one I did was to Hisatung. Oh,” Ruihi paused, “That was a fun month. Hey,” Ruihi patted Ryan’s arm. “You ever wonder why a week is 7 days both here and on Earth but a month is a year here and only 4 weeks there?”

“No,” Ryan responded dully, trying to focus on checking the control panels. “I try not to think about humans too much.”

“Ah, that’s a shame, dude,” Ruihi leaned back. “I find them to be an incredibly fascinating species. We’re kind of similar if you think about it, but opposites. Like, they’re different shades of brown but we’re different shades of green. Like, isn’t that so trippy?”

“Ok,” Ryan turned to him. “I finished running a check on the panel. We’re about ready to take off if you want to tell the passengers.”

“Righteous,” Ruihi smirked. He took the intercom mic and announced, “Good day, dudes and dudettes. You ready to soar to Titan? Cause that’s where we’re headed and if you don’t like it, get off now. But if you’re here with no fear, I welcome you on this grand adventure we call life. We’ll be ready to take off in about teka minutes. You have until then to decide.” Ruihi finished in a slightly darker tone then beamed proudly at Ryan, looking for his approval. “Hey, you bummed about missing the Earth Food Festival? I am but there’s always next year, right?”

Ryan pursed his lips. “You forgot to turn the intercom button on. They didn’t hear you.”

Ruihi looked at the intercom mic. “Ha! No way! That’s hilarious.” He punched Ryan in the arm. “Ok, take two,” Ruihi smiled, making sure to press the intercom button on first. “Good day, dudes and dudettes,” he repeated.

Ryan concentrated on his control wheel as he prepared himself mentally for the trip ahead. He also made a mental note to never mention Ruihi to Shoky. She would surely leave Ryan for him.

© 2016 DB Heinemann

Author's Note

DB Heinemann
Again, not super great with emotional development so any tips would be appreciated.

My Review

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I think you developed the emotion perfectly, especially doe Ryan considering he seems to be an awkward character that has trouble saying what he really means.

Anyway, keep up the wonderful writing and I look forward to the end of the book so keep writing!!! (^U^)

Posted 2 Years Ago

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Added on November 6, 2016
Last Updated on November 6, 2016


DB Heinemann
DB Heinemann


Just a super awesome person looking to hone the craft. I mostly do fantasy but I occasionally get science fiction-y or some artsy fartsy soul searching writing. But fantasy's my main go to because the.. more..

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A Chapter by DB Heinemann