“Remember girls, I’m a hell of a lot meaner than you.
Think about that the next time you get the bright idea to talk Ayama into pranking me by proxy,” he told them as he turned his back to them, then strode out resolutely.
The guards followed him, but only when they got on the other side of the closed door, did the twins hear the explosion of telepathic mirth from them. This isn’t over, Jason! We’ll get you for this! Meya’s sending boomed once the door was closed and she had a feeling of security and power again. You can try, he replied calmly.
Oh, by the way, the viddy of your new look is going to be broadcast to every vidlink on Karis. You wouldn’t! You made me appear in public like this.
You made me appear before the Confederate Council like this, and that was far more embarrassing than you can ever imagine Now you get the same privilege, he replied cheekily, which made Aya wheeze in that voiceless laughter behind him. Damn you, Jason! Myra raged.
That’s not funny! Oh yes it is, at least to me, he replied shamelessly, which made all his guards explode into that voiceless laughter. With the righteous dispensation of justice meted out, Jason returned to Karis just in time to meet Dahnai’s dropship as it landed on the pad behind her guest house, the shower having passed by and leaving shafts of sunlight pouring through breaks in the clouds.
Dahnai was over an hour early, and Jason had had to push them to get him there before Dahnai left the dropship.
Jyslin was there with Rann, Tim and Symone hurrying down the walkway, Symone taking the time to change into a bikini top and a pair of shorts, and Shya raced out of the hatch the instant it opened and literally tackled Rann to the ground as she hugged him.
Jason came up from the beach and got there just in time to give Dahnai a hug, feeling much more amenable now that she’d finally conceded.
You made it on time, Jayce, she smiled.
She was wearing a very Terran-like tank top that ended about a finger under her proud breasts, showing off her washboard stomach, and a pair of skin-tight spandex-like shorts, almost like running shorts, that were black with a white vertical stripe along each outside hip, and very simple sandals on her feet.
Just a glance back at the others made it clear she was not greeting him in any way formally, since the entire Imperial family was wearing clothes more suitable for a beach than a ceremony. Just barely, he replied.
You’re early. Only an hour or so, she replied, smiling at him as she patted his blue-tinged cheek.
Not as dark as I hoped, but it’ll do, she winked. Bitch.
Kellin, he sent happily, clasping the Prince Consort’s forearm warmly, then giving him a careful hug, since Jason was in armor and Kellin was a little…vulnerable.
Much to his usual style, Kellin was wearing only a robe-like garment that wasn’t large enough to wrap all the way around him, which left a visible strip of his chest that went all the way down, allowing his garment to all but showcase his penis as if the hip-length red garment were curtains.
In Faey society, men did tend to go bottomless quite a bit, especially if that man had an impressive package, and Kellin liked to show off for his wife.
Jyslin hugged him, pulling their hands apart, and he laughed and put his arms around her. Hi guys! I’m so glad to see you! he sent, then he hugged Symone when they got there.
Hey Symone, how have you been? Busy.
I have a real job now, Kellin! Really? Doing what? She’s a rigger instructor for the Karinne Marines, Jason replied as he reached down and picked up Sirri.
Goodness, Sirri, you’re even bigger now than the last time you were here! How have you been? Okay, Uncle Jason, she replied, kissing him on the cheek.
Sirri was only wearing a pair of panty-like shorts, which for her was normal.
Sirri didn’t really like shirts, and preferred to go topless whenever she could.
You look kinda funny blue, but it’s sorta neat. It won’t happen again, that’s an absolute guarantee, he sent darkly, which made them all burst out laughing.
He was definitely the most clothed of the three kids, wearing a knee-length white robe-like upper garment that only had a right sleeve, but that sleeve came all the way down to his wrist, with light tan leggings on under the robe that looked to be made of a very thin fabric.
Jason sometimes admired Maer’s taste in clothing, he was definitely more fashion-conscious than his sisters…but then again, he was a male, and his appearance was extremely important.
Maer, I like the new haircut. The eldest of Dahnai’s children put a tentative hand to his very short haircut, almost a buzz cut, and smiled sheepishly.
I wanted to try it, but wasn’t sure how it would look. I bet it’s a lot cooler. Oh yeah, and I don’t have to comb my hair anymore, he chuckled aloud. I think it looks a touch silly, but he’s old enough to make his own decisions about his hairstyle, Dahnai sent, her disapproval swirling as an undercurrent to her thought.
She’d liked him much better with shoulder-length hair.
Besides, it’ll grow back. As fast as his hair grows? Give it a month, Kellin agreed as he shook hands with Tim.
You still work for Miaari? Oh yeah, she’ll never let me go now, he replied lightly.
The whole office would fall apart without me. So, how did the revenge go? Dahnai asked with a grin. Meya and Myra will never do it again, he replied bluntly, which made them all laugh.
They all almost fell down when Jason put up a hologram using one of the hovering camera pods of what he did to them, the riot of colors all over their bodies, the hair with every strand a different color than the hair beside it, the looks of absolute horror on their faces when they realized what he’d done.
Songa helped me whip it up.
It’s a variation of the medical compounds they use to incite melanin growth in newly grown skin, just highly accelerated, he sent with amusement.
Accelerated like that and used on skin that already has developed melanin, it randomly alters existing pigmentation instead of inciting normal melanin development.
They’ll look like victims of a paint factory explosion for about a takir, as the effect slowly fades.
The hair, well, they’ll have to either dye it or cut it off and wait for their normal hair to grow back. Jason, that’s awful! Dahnai protested, then she burst out into new gales of laughter. — Well then, is Ayama and Surin available to help Evin watch them? I trust them with them. You shouldn’t, Ayama is a treacherous bitch who will get hers in time.
She’s the one that sabotaged my tanning bed, at the behest of Meya and Myra, Jason retorted, which made Dahnai giggle. Aya, have a couple of guards with them, just in case Ayama tries to turn my children purple. Aya smiled slightly, and nodded. First, you get out of this, Dahnai ordered, rapping her knuckles on his armor.
Then we’ll sit down and talk, then have a nice dinner.
Then you’ll be spending the night over at my house, and Jyslin will be hosting Kellin, she declared. Stop ordering me around on my planet, woman.
I’m the one in charge here. She gave him an adorably dirty look.
Now, Jason. He laughed and reached down to pick up Shya.
What do you think, Shya? Should we tell your mother to push off? Don’t drag me into this, Uncle Jason, she protested. Good point.
Go ahead and go down to the beach and have fun while everyone gets everything settled in, but stay out of the water until Ayama gets there.
Understand? Yes, Daddy, Rann replied, taking Shya’s hand and hurrying towards the beach.
Sirri and Maer followed them with Evin and four guards following.
The damp sand would keep them entertained as Dahnai’s servants and staff brought their things down and got their rooms ready to Dahnai’s satisfaction.
Ayama and Surin were mainly over there just to stock their pantry, prepare some snacks, make sure everything was working properly, and get the climate control where Dahnai liked it.
Two more water-based dropships descended and landed at the pier beside the corvette, and Dahnai’s small army of maids, grooms, pages, and more of her guard began to disembark, carrying crates, bags, racks of clothes, and boxes up the walkway and heading for Dahnai’s house.
Aya met with the commander of Dahnai’s guard, then they started deploying Dahnai’s guards along with Aya’a guards along the strip, securing it for the Empress’ visit.
Kyva and two of her KBB strode into view down on the beach, which caused all the kids to run over and gawk at the sleek black Gladiator, the heavy railgun holstered over her mecha’s right shoulder.
Jason watched musingly as Kyva had her Gladiator kneel down, forearm on knee and looking down at the excited kids, who didn’t get to see a Gladiator from that close very often, and Jason had a strange image of a green-skinned Benga in a similar pose, looking down from his 18 feet tall frame at the puny humans. Jason was a bit surprised when he looked at the wooden walkway and saw Kumi hurrying towards them, along with Yila Trefani.
Both Kumi and Yila were bare-ass naked, not even wearing sandals, and both were dripping wet; the two of them must have been in Kumi’s hot tub…and of course, neither bothered to put anything on to come see what was going on.
She hurried up past the guards and bowed sinuously. “Great Trelle, I had no idea you’d be here, your Majesty!” she said with honest surprise. “You’re days early!” “What is she doing here, Jason?” Dahnai asked. “She kinda has free right of passage to and from Karis,” he chuckled. “Sometimes I don’t even know she’s here, like right now.” “I just got here a few hours ago.
Me and Kumi closed a few new business deals with the Haumda and the Ogravians, and were taking a soak in Kumi’s hot tub to celebrate.” The Ogravians were a small empire in the Verutan sector, way on the far side, which just had to somehow be related to the Goraga.
They were both a bipedal bovine species, though the Ogravians were actually highly intelligent and a little smaller than the Goraga, and lacked the Goraga’s violent tendencies.
Jason had once mused that the Goraga might be the basis of the old Minotaur legends, but the Ogravians were probably the more likely suspect, since they’d had hyperspace jump engine technology for the last 1,500 years. “We’re expanding laminated titanium sales deeper into the Verutan sector.” “As long as I don’t get any angry missives accusing you two of swindling them,” he said, which made both of them grin a little. “Oh come now, we’re undercutting the closest competitor by nearly five thousand credits per benkonn,” Yila tutted. “How can that possibly be swindling them?” “How are you pulling that off?” Dahnai demanded. “Easy.
We can replicate laminated titanium,” Kumi grinned, flicking a little water at Yila. “We don’t have to make it like other metal companies do.
That lets us sell it at nearly a quarter of the price of anyone else.
But we only undercut by 10% so we can rake in pure profit,” she added with an outrageous smile. Dahnai crossed her arms under her breasts and gave Jason a cool look. “I hope you realize you’re undercutting Merrane Mineral and Metal Fabrication?” “That’s business, your Majesty,” Yila said smoothly, giving her a dangerous little smile. “Besides, 3MF doesn’t do business in the Verutan sector.” “We will soon,” she said. “And I think we’re going to have a little talk about Karinne replicator accessibility,” she said, poking Jason’s breastplate. “I’m sure you can talk about it, your Majesty, but House Trefani has already secured exclusive partnership rights with Karinne Metals,” Yila declared, admiring her manicured nails. “Someone needs her ass taken down a couple of pegs,” Dahnai noted to Jason. “I’ve come to that conclusion myself a few times over the last couple of months,” Jason agreed, the two of them looking at the totally unrepentant Yila. “Don’t hate me because I’m a step ahead, your Majesty,” she grinned, then winked outrageously, which made Dahnai laugh despite herself. “Jason, your Majesty, would you mind terribly if I brought Dara here for dinner?”
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