Read Alien Refuge Online

Authors: Tracy St. John

Tags: #dominationsubmission, #erotica aliens, #clans of kalquor, #kalquor, #erotica bdsm, #tracy st john, #futuristic erotica, #science fiction erotica, #erotica, #menage

Alien Refuge (5 page)

BOOK: Alien Refuge
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“Uneventful, really.” Jol shrugged. “More signs put up by the E.I.K. that I had taken down.”

In recent months an underground movement had made itself known on Haven. Missives signed by the Earthers for Independence from Kalquor, or the E.I.K., had begun appearing in public areas of the colony. These declarations and threats demanded the Kalquorians leave Haven and let the Earthers govern themselves. Warnings of ‘severe consequences for treasonous actions’ were issued to the Earthers known to be friendly with their hosts. Several homes had come under attack with crosses erected and burned on their properties.

Rivek smiled, as if contemplating naughty children instead of militant adults. “Occupation is never appreciated, even when benign.”

Jol scowled at him. “Occupation? We’re in Empire territory, which these fools so conveniently forget. We gave them this colony as a gift.”

The Imdiko priest’s strong features were at odds with his serene expression as he scooped the fried bread circles out of the sizzling oil. He set them to drain on absorbent towels. “Some people can never be helped enough to overcome their anger.” His smile grew as he looked over his shoulder at Jol and Ospar. “Which is not to say we give up on them.”

Ospar returned the smile. “Of course not. But you have to admit, they make it damned hard to do that sometimes.”

“Thank the ancestors for challenges. Otherwise, we would all fall into weakness.”

Jol thought of the challenges facing Iris, of the strength she showed despite all her problems. Rivek would no doubt think her the perfect example of perseverance. Yet, the Nobek wanted to make her lot not so difficult. Surely there should be more pleasure than pain to life.

Jol wished he could do more for her than put up a fence and keep her home warm, something that might erase the darkness in her eyes.

* * * *

Morning’s first light was barely in the sky when Iris approached the Kalquorian Temple of Life. She held a food container in one hand and Thomas’ wrist with the other. For once the little boy wasn’t struggling to escape her and go his own way. He stared at the temple with wide eyes.

The structure was beautiful, probably the most stunning Iris had ever seen. It looked like something out of a fairytale. It didn’t quite resemble a castle, but she could almost imagine a princess sleeping somewhere within, waiting for the enchanted kiss of her one true love that would release her from a spell.

It was so white, it put the surrounding snow to shame. White and blameless enough that it almost seemed made of solidified clouds and vapor. The spired and sweeping architecture couldn’t be pinned down to any specific shape. It was as if a smallish mountain had resolved to turn itself into a something between a gothic cathedral and a palace. As if the earth itself had formed the building at God’s request.

Iris had never seen its like. She thought she would not be one bit surprised if angels resided here.

The open entrance that yawned wide yet showed them little of the shadowed interior. As they came closer, a tall figure in robes stepped out. Iris swallowed to see the large Kalquorian watching them with interest, even though his demeanor couldn’t have been more welcoming. After all, he was only the second of the alien race she’d been up close to despite living the last year on Haven. Most Earthers kept away from their hosts, especially since the E.I.K. had begun threatening everyone.

Yet she didn’t really feel fear as she looked at the alien. She felt more a sense of anticipation.

The priest – Iris assumed he was the Kalquorian equivalent of a priest – was as amazing a sight as the temple itself. His features were strong, as if sculpted from granite. It seemed to Iris that such robust masculine features should make this man look as fierce as Jol. Instead, he radiated kindness and warmth. The forward part of his black hair was braided at the temples and the rest left loose to hang to his ankles. She’d never seen such long hair on anyone.

His robes matched the snowscape and temple with shimmering layers of white, gray, and blue. Bare feet peeked from beneath the flowing hems. A braided cord of silver circled his waist. He somehow managed to look ethereal as vapor and solid as granite at the same time.

Iris had never seen his like anywhere, yet he looked ... right. As if he was what she had expected to see, though she’d not known what to expect when she drove here.

As she and Thomas neared this amazing specimen of the Kalquorian race, he bowed to her. “Good day, Matara. May I assist you with something?”

The man’s voice was smooth, like brushed silk. It tickled Iris’ ears and seemed to slip down her spine. She had to restrain a shiver. First Jol’s distant thunder voice, and now this. It made her wonder if all Kalquorians had such distinctive tones. But then, Thomas had a musical voice himself, like the tinkling of piano keys. Maybe it was simply the way she heard things.

Iris smiled at the nice priest. “Hi. I, um, I was looking for Imdiko Rivek? I understand he’s a priest here?”

The Kalquorian’s eyebrows rose. “I am Rivek. Please enter.” He swept an arm towards the entrance.

Iris blinked. “You’re Imdiko Rivek? Oh, well, I don’t want to take up any of your time. I’m here because your Nobek did a wonderful thing for us yesterday.”

Rivek cocked his head as he regarded her. “You are Matara Iris? And this must be Thomas.” He leaned down and widened his gentle smile at the boy. “Hello, Thomas.”

Thomas not only looked the Kalquorian in the face, he even responded without prompting. “Hello. Train.”

He held out his latest construction for Rivek’s inspection. It was the same engine he’d shown Jol the day before, plus a caboose he’d made from a small wooden box that Iris had kept her sewing needles in. She still hadn’t found all of the needles after Thomas had dumped them on the floor. No doubt bare feet would seek out each and every one for weeks on end.

Rivek crouched down to inspect the pieces closely. “This is a train?”

“Yes. Engine and caboose.” Hook and eye closures, also swiped from Iris’ sewing materials, coupled the two together.

The priest told him, “I’ve never seen one before. Quite remarkable. Did you make this train, Thomas?”

The boy nodded solemnly. “Yes. Thomas’ train.”

“It is a wonderful train.” Rivek rose to his full height, perhaps an inch or two taller than his Nobek, Iris thought. He again swept his arm at the open entrance and said to her, “Please, come in and get out of this cold.”

She held out the food container. “I really wanted to just drop this off, if that’s okay? It’s a pie. To thank Nobek Jol for saving Thomas’ life.” Her cheeks warmed. “It’s not much, certainly not enough to repay his kindness to us, and I don’t know if Kalquorians would even like apple pie—”

Rivek gently interrupted her embarrassed babbling. “I have not tried apple pie yet, though I understand it is an Earther favorite. I know Jol will be very appreciative. Please, Matara, do come in.”

Iris peered into the dim environs beyond the doorframe uncertainly. “I don’t want Thomas to break anything valuable. He can be a little destructive.”

Rivek’s chuckle tickled her ears anew. “That is no concern, truly. Please.”

He took the food container from Iris with one hand and gently pressed her shoulder with the other, ushering her in. Still clinging to Thomas’ wrist, Iris found her feet moving her through the entrance.

“Well, if you’re sure,” she said. She was very curious to know how the amazing structure looked on the inside.

Iris walked into what she thought must be the foyer. It was a small, enclosed space with no features. A much smaller doorway waited opposite of the one she’d stepped through. The moment she stepped into the foyer, the cold gave way to warmth. Apparently, a climate field was in use at the large entrance. Rivek guided her to the smaller doorway with that same gentle pressure against her shoulder blade. The way into the main part of the temple was just big enough for the two of them and Thomas to fit through.

As they crossed the threshold, Iris gasped. As fantastic as the exterior had been, the interior was twice that.

It was like walking into a stylized winter wonderland. Gleaming white pillars that looked much like soaring trees with interwoven branches dotted an otherwise wide-open space. Everything in here was the same blameless alabaster as the outside. The windows high above on the domed ceiling were real windows like Earthers tended to use on their buildings and not the Kalquorian-preferred vids. Either someone had cleaned the latest snowfall off, or the windows were heated, because natural light streamed in. Today’s brilliant sunlight created shadows of the tree-pillars on the floor, giving the illusion that Iris walked in an enchanted forest where winter reigned without the cold.

Shucking off his coat and hat, Thomas squealed with delight as he stared around. “Trees. Thomas can climb.”

As Iris picked up the boy’s outerwear, Rivek made his ear-prickling chuckle again, and this time she couldn’t help but shiver. It really was a delightful sound.

The Imdiko told Thomas, “You may try, but they are slippery and the branches are high up. I do not believe you would get very far.”

Thomas pulled hard against Iris’ grip to reach out to one of the pillars. He rubbed his hand over it as they passed. “Slippery. Slippery trees.”

Rivek smiled at them both. “We’ll go to my counseling room where we can sit and speak.”

Iris couldn’t decide whether she wanted to look more at the priest or the temple. Both were exceptional sights. “All right. Your temple is amazing. This isn’t typical of Kalquorian architecture though, at least not from what I’ve heard.”

Rivek nodded. “It is not often we build such places from the ground up. Kalquorians tend to keep our structures part of the actual landscape. However, this being an Earther colony, we have tried to conform a little more to what your people are comfortable with.”

“You outdid yourselves with this. It’s absolutely beautiful.”

His smile deepened. “Serene surroundings make for easy contemplation.”

“Slippery trees,” Thomas declared. He was still touching each pillar they passed, tugging hard against Iris. He had finally decided he wanted to pull free and explore.

Iris said, “Stay with me, Thomas. You can’t run wild in here.”

“Actually, he can,” Rivek said. “He can’t harm anything of real value here.”

He reached within his robe and brought out a small com unit. Rivek brought it to his lips. “Copin?”

A bright voice issued from the device. “Yes, Master Rivek?”

“We have a young visitor who requires a chaperone while his parent speaks with me. Are you available?”

“Yes, Master Rivek. I am approaching your location now.”

Iris waved her hand at the priest. “That’s not really necessary.”

Thomas jerked hard. “Thomas run in trees!” he shouted. His voice echoed in the peaceful quiet, making Iris wince.

Rivek gave her a look that spoke of infinite patience. “Of course it’s necessary. The boy needs to run. If he did not, he wouldn’t insist on it. Hello, Copin.”

Iris jerked her head around to see a younger Kalquorian joining them. He beamed, radiating cheerfulness at her. His hair was arranged like Rivek’s with the braids swinging before his ears and the rest of his tresses reaching knee-length. His layered robes were the rich brown of earth, the fresh green of new growth, and sunlight yellow. He was a blast of color in all the whiteness surrounding him, like the first growth of spring after a long winter.

He bowed before them. “Good day.” He gave Iris that brilliant smile, his face that of a young male just reaching maturity. Then he knelt before Thomas. “Hello, little one. What is your name?”

Their eyes met. Thomas froze and took a step back. Then, apparently eased by the smile before him, he stepped closer to Copin again. He pointed at the temple’s interior. “Run!”

Copin nodded encouragingly. “I would be happy to run with you, but first I need your name. What is your name?”

Thomas blinked. “Thomas?” he said uncertainly.

Copin gave him his biggest grin yet. “I am glad to know you, Thomas. My name is Copin.” He looked up at Iris, who hovered in case Thomas decided he’d had enough conversation and took off. “Shall we run now?”

“Yes,” Thomas said firmly.

Iris looked at them all. Rivek was just as patient as ever, Copin looked expectant, and Thomas was straining to get away. Not sure she was doing the right thing, Iris said, “Um ... okay. I guess.”

BOOK: Alien Refuge
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ads

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