Season Notes: This is essentially a heavy nonconsent/dubious consent story set in space that’s as close to erotica as I come. If you are uncomfortable with noncon, explicit sex and/or rape, or fictional slavery, skip this story entirely.
Moira was floating in the afterglow of really good sex. There’d been more than a bit of angry-not-exactly-make-up-sex in it on both their parts, which made it better. They needed to talk, but she didn’t want to ruin the warm glow. So she snuggled down into the bed, determined to ignore the world for a few more minutes. Unfortunately, that made her bounce off the bed, which was when she realized she really was floating.
She shot upright — or tried to. Instead, she ended up in an uncontrolled spin. Something clamped onto her arm and pulled her. She nearly screamed, but a hand clamped over her mouth. Zdenko murmured in her ear, “not one goddamn sound.” He waited until she nodded, then released her mouth and grabbed a handhold next to the bed, stopping their spin.
“If we’re lucky,” Zdenko continued in that same quiet voice, “Ezra was doing some repairs and didn’t want to risk disturbing us. Might have screwed up somewhere, but Ezra doesn’t screw up.”
“And if we’re not lucky?” Moira somehow strangled her shriek down to a whisper, but they both heard the panic in it.
Zdenko made sure Moira’s hand was wrapped around the handhold, then let go himself, reached down, and turned on the magnetic soles of his boots. A moment later, his feet were clamped to the side of the wall as if was a floor. “Then we’re dealing with pirates. Or privateers.”
“Is there a difference?”
“Maybe. Pirates will take us and the ship and sell both. Privateers will take the ship and let us go somewhere with nothing but the clothes on our backs and their sincere apologies.”
Moira held the handhold until her knuckles turned white and tried not to hyperventilate. She was an academic, for god sake! She wasn’t supposed to travel the galaxy having exciting adventures. She was supposed to write case studies about other people having exciting adventures.
“And on that subject…” Zdenko rummaged in one of the bags hanging next to his bed, and Moira suddenly understood why he had bags hanging on the walls instead of a dresser. He pulled out a ball of fabric and threw it at her. She squeaked, grabbed at it, lost her grip on the handhold, realized she was spinning, squeaked again, grabbed for the handhold, and somehow managed to hold onto both the fabric and the wall. The fabric, she then realized, was a wad of clothing.
Zdenko barely seemed to notice. He walked down the wall, crossed the barrier between ‘wall’ and ‘floor’ in a single stride that left Moira feeling dizzy and reached under the bed. “Get that on. If we are unlucky enough to be stranded somewhere with nothing but the clothes on our back, you’d better have some clothes.”
Moira squeaked again, some distant still-logical part of her mind (the part that was in no way in control of her body) pointing out that while Zdenko’s had a point, she would have a hard time putting anything on with both hands wrapped around the handhold.
Then she noticed that what he’d pulled out from under the bed was a gun. Her brain, the brain that didn’t shut up even when she’d been looked on the 3P waiting to find out how she would die, immediately started up. “If you shoot that, won’t you put a hole in the side of the ship? Then we’d asphyxiate rather than whatever these… people have planned for us. And shouldn’t there be an alarm going off? This room isn’t soundproofed, so why is it so quiet?”
“You’re right, we should be hearing something, and the alarm should have gone off. But we don’t have any way to see what’s going on out there.”
Moira blinked, something about his words… “Wait!” She looked around for her datapad, left… somewhere when she’d come in the room. She saw it, floating near the other side of the room. “There! Get that.”
Looking at her oddly, Zdenko clumped across the room and brought back her datapad. Now she was juggling the clothing, pad, and handhold, and keeping a grip on none of them. Cursing, Zdenko pinned her against the wall, shoved her legs into the loose pants, grabbed the spinning tablet, and handed it back to her. “If we get out of this, I’m turning the gravity off for a week, so you can learn how to not kill yourself in it.”
Moira couldn’t exactly argue with that and wasn’t interested in trying. Instead, she pulled up the still-not-fixed hack she’d worked into the ship’s security systems. The video loaded, and she blinked in surprise, then turned the screen to show the captain.
“Well, fuck,” he said.
Sorry for the short episode and the cliffhanger. Family emergency has me scrambling, but I promise we’ll be back next week to learn what they are seeing and how they’ll respond.
Meadowsweet (S1, E10)