From Friends to Lovers Ch. 33

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The next time Talia and I came off duty, she led me down corridors in an unfamiliar part of the ship. I was beginning to pick up a little of the language, and I traced the letters by the bulkhead door where we stopped. “Er, something to do with seeing?”

She kissed me, smiling. “Well done. This is what you’d call the observation deck.”

The door slid aside at her touch, and we stepped inside. Curving across the far side of the space was a tall, seamless window, but currently opaque. “Let’s sit there,” indicated Talia.

A low couch faced the window, and I sat back, Talia leaning against me. “Ready?”


She touched a control, and the glass shimmered, seemed to vanish. In its place were the wonders of the universe, galaxies, nebulae, the gas clouds of star nurseries. “Isn’t it beautiful,” Talia murmured.

Her eyes seemed to search for a few moments, then she pointed at a tiny swirl of light in the upper corner of the star field. “There – that’s your galaxy.”

A feeling swept over me very much like the one I’d experienced when we’d first met Talia, and she’d told us where the portal had brought us to. She sensed my disorientation, wrapping her arms around me. “It’s OK, love.”

She kissed me softly. “I had another reason for bringing you here. It is time to conceive our child – if you are still certain this is what you want.”

My eyes widened. “Of course I’m sure, my love. But – you said by natural means, we couldn’t…?”

Talia smiled shyly. “We need only be intimate as we normally would. Then they will take from my body what you have given me, and do what is necessary.”

She stood to slide out of her coverall, and faced the window, the outline of her body silhouetted against the universe. “Join me.”

I likewise unclothed, and stood behind her, hands resting lightly on her waist. “Your children will be heirs to all this,” whispered Talia.

She turned to face me, moving closer, and I bent my knees just a little, finding that I could press myself into her valley as we stood. I began to move against her, and she tilted her head back, starglow casting a faint light on her face. “Mm…”

I edged her backwards until she was touching the glass, pressing into her harder, and she moaned, putting her palms flat against the window. “Oh, yes, I’m ready.”

I felt my release approaching, and Talia chuckled softly. “Try not to let too much spill over this time.”

My breathing quickened, and she flexed her hips towards me, eyes locked on my face. “Now – yes -“

We reached the point of no return together, Talia moaning softly, moisture flooding around me as I stiffened. Milky fluid spurted from me, spread along the length of her valley as I continued to move, and Talia relaxed, exhaling slowly. “It is done…”

She smiled, her face haloed with stars. “At such a time as this, it is our custom to consider how a child might be named.”

Talia’s words stirred old memories, and I nodded, kissing her on the forehead. “For a girl, I like Esther.”

Her voice held a question. “What is its meaning…?”

I chuckled softly, glancing out at the diamond-studded blackness. “It means ‘star’, my love.”

Talia smiled again. “Perfect.”

She took a deep breath. “I must leave you for a little while now. Get some rest?”

I released her reluctantly, stepping back, and watched her zip up her coverall. She gave canlı bahis şirketleri me a last reassuring glance as she stepped into the corridor, and she was gone.

I pulled on my own coverall and made my way back to our quarters, the room seeming empty without Talia. Sleep was slow in coming, but eventually I drifted off, the image of far galaxies still lingering in my mind.

It was early morning by ship’s time, the room still dim, when I heard the soft click of the door and Talia slid into the bed beside me. “Are you OK?” I murmured. “Did they – did it hurt?”

Talia pulled back the covers, and in the low light I could just make out a tiny red pinprick low on her stomach. I bent to press my lips to it softly, then smiled up at her. “So a new life has begun…”

For the next few days, the ship continued its patrol, and one evening as we were getting ready for bed, I glanced across at Talia, then looked again more closely. “What…?”

Talia chuckled softly. “Did I not tell you? With us, the growth of a child is more rapid… Esther will be with us within a few weeks.”

I raised my eyebrows, smiling. “Well, no chance of introducing the girls to the idea slowly, then.”

She had no chance to reply as the hyper-relay started to buzz insistently. I hit a key, and Sarah’s face appeared, anxiously glancing off camera then back to us. “Tim – it’s started.”

Out of shot I heard Beth’s gasping cry, and I nodded. “Talia – let’s go. Beth, darling, hold on, we’ll be there in no time.”

We hurried down to the warship’s portal room, the technicians already setting the controls for Earth, and as soon as the shimmering field formed, Talia and I stepped through, finding ourselves on the gravel outside the house. The front door opened, and Sarah appeared, Beth leaning on her arm as they came towards us.

I embraced them both. “Let’s get you to the car, shall we.”

Sarah shook her head. “Think it’s a bit late for that – our little one is in too much of a hurry.”

I swallowed, trying not to panic. “Back inside? Damn, I wish Francesca was here.”

Talia put her hand on my shoulder. “Tim, I can help. Just – don’t tell the Council I did this.”

She took Beth’s hand, then mine, and Beth nodded her understanding, grasping Sarah’s fingers. My vision blurred, and when I could see again, we were standing in the reception area of the maternity unit.

A busy nurse turned, blinking. “Where did you – oh, goodness, let me get you upstairs…”

A couple of minutes later Beth was safely installed in a side room, and I sat by her holding her hand, trying not to grimace as her fingers tightened painfully on mine with each contraction. “Breathe like we practiced, darling.”

Talia stood at the end of the bed, and Sarah glanced away from Beth for a moment, her eyes widening. “Tali – are you -“

Talia nodded, and Sarah threw me a puzzled look. “Tim, I don’t understand.”

Beth cried out again, and Sarah turned back to stroke her forehead. “I’ll explain everything,” I promised. “Right now, though…”

The midwife reappeared. “How are we doing?”

She examined Beth carefully. “OK, you’re fully dilated.”

Beth nodded, biting her lips, then “Ohh…”

Her cry built to an almost-scream, then I heard a different sound, another pair of lungs, and the midwife smiled. “You have a daughter.”

I couldn’t have breathed a bigger canlı kaçak iddaa sigh of relief, my fingers tenderly catching damp strands of Beth’s hair away from her face. “Well done, darling.”


I drew the car to a careful stop outside the front door, and helped Beth out, turning back to pick up the car cot. “Looking for something?” teased Sarah, already cradling Jamie in her arms.

I chuckled softly. “That child is going to be so spoilt…”

We went through to the kitchen, Sarah still holding the baby, and after a few minutes we heard the sound of the front door. “In here, Mum,” called Sarah.

Sarah’s mother came in carrying a cot. “Thanks for looking after him,” Sarah smiled, passing Jamie over to me and taking Jacob from her mother’s arms.

“I’ll get going, then,” her mother nodded. “Let me know when I can babysit again…”

We listened as the sound of her car disappeared down the drive, then Beth grinned, taking her daughter’s tiny fingers in hers. “Wave at your brother,” she cooed.

Jamie gurgled, and I waved Jacob’s fingers back. “Time for another feed for both of them,” Sarah ventured.

She raised her eyebrows at us knowingly. “I take it nobody minds…”

Both babies fed, miraculously they settled down for their nap without protest. I was in the middle of making us breakfast – “Guess I’ll be the one tied to the stove now -” when once again there was the sound of a car engine outside.

I looked through the window, and blinked, then passed the spatula to Talia. “Just try not to let the bacon burn,” I teased at her blank look, then half-ran out to the hall. “‘Cesca – Marie – how -?”

Marie wrapped her arms around me hard enough to squeeze the breath out of my lungs. “We, ah, told the Secretary-General that there would be a diplomatic incident if we didn’t get on the next plane back.”

“Come through,” I gestured, and there was a flurry of hugs and not a few tears as the girls welcomed the newcomers. “I took the bacon off the stove,” confided Talia.

Marie hugged her again, then held her at arms’ length, smiling. “Seems our family will be having another addition soon.”

Talia nodded. “Just a few weeks.”

“Let’s all have breakfast,” I urged, and we sat down. “The bacon’s perfect,” I reassured Talia.

I fought back a yawn. “Sorry – what with changing time zones and sleeping in a hospital chair last night, I’m absolutely wiped.”

“We could probably all do with some rest,” Beth nodded. “One or other of the little ones will definitely need something again soon, though.”

“We’ll take first turn,” Francesca volunteered. “You put the babies in Marie’s room anyway, didn’t you – we’ll just nap until we’re needed.”

“Or something,” Marie’s voice was suggestive, and I threw her a curious smile.

Her eyes were soft as she looked at Francesca. “We – well, let’s just say we got quite a lot closer while we were together in Geneva.”

She took Francesca’s hand. “Come on, love.”

The expression on Sarah’s face when they’d gone mixed an obvious sharing of their happiness, with mild amusement. “Well, well.”

She glanced at Talia. “While we’re talking about who’s sleeping where… Tali, why don’t you come in with me?”

Sarah raised an eyebrow at me as though reproachfully, but her lips curved in a smile. “Tali can fill me in on exactly what happened to give her that – glow, shall canlı kaçak bahis we say.”

I squeezed Beth’s fingers. “Seems like we’ll have plenty of room in that bed of ours.”

She exchanged grins with Sarah and Talia. “Oh, we’re sure to have company soon enough. But it’ll be nice to snuggle for a while – we can have the babies in with us for their nap sometimes, too.”

“That’s a slippery slope,” teased Sarah, getting a roll of Beth’s eyes. “Come on, Tali.”


Beth stepped out of the shower, towelling her hair. “That feels better.”

She slid back into bed, and I wrapped my arms around her, damp hair against my face. “Missed you.”

She shifted closer with a sound of contentment. “But the fleet can do without you now, can’t it.”

I nodded. “The university has put its foot down, gently but firmly. All of us are co-opted to the team dealing with technology transfer between us and Talia’s people, and the economic impacts.”

Hesitantly I moved a hand to cup her breast, intending only quiet intimacy, but she put her fingers over mine, squeezing gently. “Missed you,” she repeated, her voice holding a clear hint.

I hesitated again. “It’s OK,” she murmured. “Some things might have to wait, but I think we know enough creative ways for this, don’t we.”

She turned in my arms, kissing me. “Why don’t you see how my breasts respond…”

I moved down, burying my face in her softness for a moment, and she cradled my head. “You feel like Jamie when you do that,” she teased.

“And when I do this?” I murmured, taking a nipple between my lips, suckling gently. The trickle of sweetness I tasted somehow surprised me, and I swallowed as Beth gasped quietly – “Not the same.”

I moved to the other nipple, and Beth shifted onto her back as I used my tongue softly. “Would it be selfish of me if I asked you to go straight down there?”

My answer was to move down between her parting thighs, my mouth so careful on her. “Ahh…” she breathed, “that’s perfect.”

I dared a tonguetip on her, and she flexed her hips. “Oh, yes… you can touch me harder there.”

I used my tongue more insistently, and Beth’s hands moved to her breasts. “Oh, leaking a little,” she chuckled softly. Her now-wet fingertips brushed her nipples, and again her hips lifted, lowered. “Oh – so close -“

I took her nub between my lips, suckling softly, and Beth gasped. “Mm – if I -“

Her fingers pinched her nipples, giving her the final push, and she arched, putting a hand over her mouth to muffle her cry. “Ohh…”

She relaxed, reaching for my hand. “Tim… I love you.”

“Love you too,” I nodded, moving up to hold her.

“Your turn?” she queried.

“Mmm,” I nodded. “But however works for you.”

Beth’s response was to sit up, then get to her knees. She glanced down at the cleft between her breasts, then at my face with an arched eyebrow. I nodded, shifting closer, my hardness pressing between her breasts, feeling her nipples brushing my skin. “Mm,” Beth breathed, “feels good for me, too.”

She pressed her breasts together with her hands. “Better?”

I nodded wordlessly, starting to move, already feeling an increasing urgency. “Oh – Beth – missed you -“

Her eyes widened as I pressed against her a final time, then spurted stickiness over her throat, running back down onto the curve of her breasts. “Wow.”

She dabbled fingers in the creamy blobs, tasting, then reached for hankies to mop the rest. I wrapped my arms round her, drawing her down to the bed. “Ready for a nap now?”

She snuggled closer. “Just one thing, first.”


“Tell me about Talia…”

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