I knew I was in trouble as soon as his hologram appeared in front of my desk. I hadn’t had time for a love life in a year and a half since I took this job. We were a physician short with two clinics to run, so I usually picked up a couple extra shifts a week and took emergency house calls when no one else was available.
This guy was gorgeous, and his articulate manner was mesmerizing as he listed his credentials and talked about his reasons for coming to Zevus Mar.
“I was born on Aledus, but I am a psion, and so was my mother. After I was born, my father moved us to Zevus Mar to an agri-complex, a short flit from Elran. My parents were killed in the Tregan invasion, and the man chosen to be my guardian took me to Oltarin on the far side of Federation space. Our farm was held in trust for me until I was old enough to decide what to do with it.
“Now I have decided; I’m coming to settle there and either set up a medical practice or join an established one on Zevus Mar.”
Our candidate’s credentials were impeccable. My fellow Med-Techs and acting Chief Physician have already approved. None of them had ever worked with a psion before, and no one as sexy as this guy.
He seemed to be looking right into my eyes as he spoke passionately about his experience. A shiver of sexual awareness rippled through my body, and he is a psion. My face heated as I realized; there was no way to hide my attraction to him.
I sighed to myself as his presentation finished. It had been way too long since I’d been laid. I’d barely had time to take matters into my own hand with one of my toys. We have plenty of good-looking, sexy guys here to enjoy. But there was something more penetrating in his gaze than I had seen in any other man.
None of them were psions. Lanimer was. I drew in a couple breaths, letting them out slowly. I couldn’t vote against him just because he was a telepath—because it will only take him seconds to know I think I want to fuck him. Then again, maybe when I meet him in person, he won’t be as alluring as he seems now.
He’s fully qualified and the first applicant we’ve had in a year. Physicians who want to come to Zevus Mar are few and far between. Barely inside Federation space, the stigma of the Tregan invasion thirty years before had slowed the colony’s growth to a trickle.
I was born here. A blue-skinned Trakellisan with pointed ears and a tail, my father is one of the most handsome males I know. Mother is Zevian, a full-blooded human with light brown skin. I am neither blue nor brown. I ended up with violet eyes, ice blue hair, lavender skin, pointed ears, and no tail…
Human men have called my looks exotic, even beautiful, but I haven’t met one I wanted around permanently. There are enough Trakellisan human pairings on Zevus Mar that they were accepted. They came to this world to escape their planet’s tyrannical Chenaran Empire rule.
But I doubt Lanimer has ever seen anyone like me. My father’s people had only settled here after the Tregans were driven out. The attraction I felt might not be mutual, or maybe I would feel different after meeting him in person. So let him come. We need the help.
“I’m leaving,” I said when they were all seated for their weekly meal together.
No one said anything for half a minute. My surrogate parents, Nalina and Orin, and my guardians Hankura and Chelle all looked at me in askance.
Finally, Hankura said, “Well, you are an adult, have been for some time. What are your plans?”
He might well have said it was about time. After all, I was thirty-four years old, still living at home. The only reason I hadn’t left already was that I hadn’t decided what to do with my life, aside from medicine. I’d worked at the Blue Summit Clinic for the last ten years. I loved working there and living in the Cerulean Mountains of Oltarin, but I hadn’t found a mate.
Yet, I’d been feeling the call of the desert and my home on Zevus Mar.
“I’m accepting a job at the Elran Clinic on Zevus Mar.”
The look on their faces told me they weren’t expecting that. And even though I wasn’t reading their minds, I sensed they had mixed feelings about it. I sure couldn’t blame them. Zevus Mar was a hellhole when they were there as prisoners of the Tregans. It was during the same time my parents were killed, a time with painful memories for all of us.
“What made you decide this?” Chelle asked, frowning.
“I’ve been dreaming about Zevus Mar for a while now. Something seems to be calling me back there. I can’t even explain it. … nothing like the connection between you and Hankura, but a strong feeling I need to go back.”
“When will you leave?” asked Hankura.
“I just got the offer this morning, and I wanted to tell you before I send my formal acceptance,” I told them. “Nalina and Orin are the only ones who know besides you. I can get a passenger freighter to Rintalis and connect with Sential Trader to Zevus Mar.”
“That’s great,” Chelle said with a smile. “It’s a shame they don’t get to Oltarin anymore. We haven’t seen them in over ten years.”
“Now that Jamerin gave up tramping and settled on Aledus, I kind of wish I’d decided sooner to make the trip with Parei and him. But Otian and Rona are good people. I remember the stories you told us.”
“We’re all going to miss you,” Hankura said. “I know your parents would be proud of the man you’ve become.”
“We lost a lot of friends to the Tregans,” said Chelle, “but we gained you, Orin, and Nalina.”
She smiled with tears in her eyes, and I felt a lump in my throat. We all knew we would probably never see each other again after I left. I loved these people, and I had already shed tears over that realization.
Oran and Nalina became my parents, while Hankura and Chelle were akin to a doting aunt and uncle. I’d had a great childhood on Oltarin with them and their biological children, but it never erased the devastation of leaving my parents lying on the ground. Time and distance reduced the acute mourning phase. I have had so many wonderful memories since then.
At thirty-four, I still hadn’t found the right woman to share my life with. Maybe because I felt the pull to go back to Zevus Mar. Buried on our agricomplex, the planet didn’t kill my parents; men did.
Then there was Evalee, a stunning Trakellisan human crossbreed. Despite the harsh desert climate, it became a haven for Trakellisan refugees fleeing the Chenaran Empire rule over their planet.
There was something about Evalee that intrigued me. After the acting chief physician sent a holographic message to offer me the position, I received a holographic message from her. She introduced herself and said that the decision to offer me the job was unanimous and they were all looking forward to meeting me.
I planned to take the position before I received her hologram. I’d replayed it a few times to study every nuance of her demeanor.
“Hello, Lanimer. This is not an official notification; Chief Yaroman already sent that to you. This is from me. The other techs and I all voted for the chief to hire you. I’ve gone back and forth with myself on whether I should contact you or not but seeing as you are a psion, you will know as soon as we meet.”
She looked away from the camera for a few seconds. When she looked back, her cheeks had gone from lavender to blue. “As soon as I saw your message and looked into your eyes, I felt a wave of yearning. That’s never happened to me before. I nearly panicked when I realized there was no way I could hide it from you. So, I decided to just tell you upfront so it wouldn’t be hanging between us and get in the way of working together.”
“Goddess, I’m not even sure I should send this, but if it’s a problem for you, I can arrange my schedule, so we have as little contact as possible. I am an alien hybrid, some humans want nothing to do with us, so I understand. I don’t want to be a reason for you to turn down the job. We desperately need another physician here.”
Copyright 2022 by Christine Myers All Rights Reserved
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