Tales From The Clave

Vignettes by Cheryl Petterson

(Standard Year 2236 - 2241)

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Standard Year 2238

It was very late - or very early, depending on how one looked at it - when Del finally dragged himself out from under the fuselage he'd been working on. His head was quiet, which meant there was no one else awake in the Clave's work bays, but not silent, which meant there were still a few people up and about elsewhere in the small station. He rose on legs unsteady from having been stretched out under a needle's belly for too long and made his way to the coffee urn at the front of the hangar.

He was more than shocked to find a living, breathing, awake person standing next to the urn, gulping down the strong brown liquid as if it were water. He blinked a couple of times to make sure he wasn't hallucinating from lack of sleep, then stepped up to get his own cup of coffee.

"Hey, Kam," he muttered.

"Cajun," the Racer replied. "I didn't jam you up, did I?"

"Naw, I 'bout to take a break." He paused to let a mouthful of the coffee slide down his throat. "What you on?" he finally asked. "I not hear you."

The Asian's smile was sly and secretive. He leaned forward and whispered "Hell if I know," then chuckled, shrugging.

"You been partyin'," Del concluded.

Kam nodded. "But it got boring," he said. "I thought I'd go for a nice - uplifting ride." He chuckled again and Del snorted.

"You wanna get all jacked up so they not be so borin', I be t'inkin'," he corrected.

"You always were the perceptive one," Kam agreed with another smile.

"I also be t'inkin' I not gonna let ya," the Cajun added. Kam's eyes went wide with surprise. "Not knowin' what you on, you might crash my li'l beauty - an' where that leave my rep?"

Kam laughed a full, unrestrained sound. "You ever known me to crash on anything?" he managed. The laughter was contagious, and Del found himself smiling, feeling very much at ease with the Racer. Kam suddenly grabbed his arm. "Come on, Cajun," he said, "You're never boring."

He was pulled into the Clave's lift and Kam immediately brought the Maker close to him. "Whatever I'm on," he murmured, "it's makin' you damned attractive."

Del's senses were filled with a golden glow, but it was tinged with green and streaked through him like a swarm of hornets. It was overlaid with something that sparkled and called, promising both excitement and the unusual quiet of Kam's obviously working-overtime brain. Del couldn't fathom why it was so quiet, but that called to him more than any other factor. So he relaxed into the Racer's embrace, letting the warm mouth kiss his, the skillful hands tease and arouse his flesh.

The noise in his head picked up as the lift came to a stop. There were others here, and he realized they were on the cabin level, where Racers, Makers and Groupies fucked and crashed. Kam took a hold of his wrist, whispering, "Only a little while, Cajun. Once we get to a room, I can make it all go away."

"How you do that?" Del rasped.

Kam again smiled his sly smile. "Hell if I know," he repeated.

Wincing, Del decided that if there were even a chance the Racer was right, it was worth it. He followed down the hallway to an obviously unoccupied room. Kam shut the door behind him, then turned, kissing the Maker with hedonistic intensity.

Del held his breath, then felt the buzzing insistence of other thoughts and emotions melting away from him. It wasn't dulled, like on the sapphire he was so dependant on. Nor was it enveloped, as sometimes happened during particularly fervent sex. It was, in fact, most like - and Del would have started if not encompassed by the soothing waves - being out on the Gulf in his uncle's shrimp boats. It was as if Kam somehow held all those simple little shrimp minds that absorbed Del's chaos, sending it out through their antennae into the deep water.

"Mmmm, you taste good," Kam was murmuring, and the sound vibrated in Del's emotions, bringing forth a response that was sweet, yet insistent. He found himself grasping at the Racer's clothing, pulling his own off, stumbling backwards to the bed that dominated the small cabin. "Oh, baby," Kam crooned, "this is gonna be so fucking fine…"


It was. Hours later, Del was breathing deeply, his body tingling from the pleasure he and Kam had shared. The most amazing thing was that his mind had been absolutely his own throughout the entire experience. He had been aware of Kam, but the emotion that came to him was no more than the aftertaste of his own hungers. The strange ocean tranquility still soothed and surrounded him, cradling his brain in languid peace and sated lethargy. He turned to Kam, still lying beside him, and gave him an impulsive hug.

"Cher," he murmured, "you fantastic." He felt rather than heard the Racer's chuckle.

"No, Cajun, that was you."

"We both take credit then."


There was a companionable silence, then Del raised himself up on his elbow. "You really not know what you take?" he asked.

Kam's eyes looked a little troubled, a little distant. "I can't remember," he said, then shrugged. "But it sure did the trick for us, didn't it?" he added brightly.

"It surely did, mon ami," the Maker returned. "An' if you ever take it again, you look me up."

The Asian smiled. "I will, you can bet on that." He paused. "And can I look you up if I'm not on - whatever it was I took?"

Del frowned. Without the peace and silence in his brain, he knew he was likely to be an entirely different kind of lover. But considerin' Kam's rep, that might not be such a bad t'ing either, he thought. "If you in a different kind o' mood, I might be interested," he replied carefully.

Kam's eyes gleamed. "I bet I can guess what kind of mood that would be," he said, running an arousing finger across the engineer's chest. Del grabbed the hand the finger was attached to, bringing it to his lips, softly biting.

"I be t'inkin' you can," he affirmed.

Kam pushed himself up and over Del's body. "Why wait?" he growled.

"Well, mostly 'cause I got an engine to get back to, " Del said, "Or there gonna be one unhappy Cobra."

Kam laughed, kissing Del lightly. "Well, I don't want to spoil his racing," he said, and sat up. "Another time, then, Cajun."

"Most surely, Kamikaze," Del agreed. As the Racer got up, finding his clothes and putting them on, the pressure that was the normal state of Del's being began slowly seeping back to the Maker's awareness. He sighed, closing his eyes, raising his hand to his forehead. When he opened them again, Kamikaze was gone.


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