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TitleAll in the Family
Author: Jebbypal
spoilers: Post-Peacekeeper Wars so the whole series is fair
game. Avoid if you haven't seen PKWars and don't want to be spoiled.

She’s had the dreams for as long as she can remember. A man with pale skin, brown spiky hair, and eyes blue like the open ocean. He haunts her. No matter how hard she looks, how many people she meets on the Royal Planet or its protectorates, no one matches the image. Sometimes, she feels like she’s almost met him, but something will be off. The smile will come too easily and be too wide, the eyes will be green instead of blue, or even more frustrating, everything about them will taste off to her perceptions.

And still she dreams. Of paper flying in the sky with a string tail, supernovas, and green open fields filled with strange four legged creatures that amaze and terrify her.

Eventually, she dismisses them as dreams. After all, the royal heir has much to occupy her time once childhood is over. Books of policy and history fill the days: the lore of her ancestors’ estrangement from the Peacekeepers, the balancing act of their independence, even her own birth.

And her free time? Her choices for relaxation frustrate her parents to no end. They’d prefer that she enjoy the many parties of the elite. Find her mate. Though her mother often looks sad when they discuss tasting. Her brothers are too young for such talk still, but she knows the urgency that underlies her family’s hold on power. But it, and trivial parties, holds no interest for her. When she does attend governmental functions for her mother, the affairs bore her.

No, in her free time, she much prefers the company of the defense engineers. One of her fondest memories is the first time that she went on an inspection tour of the satellite production plant with her parents. The parts made sense and the orbital formulas felt like…coming home. Her parents had asked the engineers to excuse her ten-year old excitement and questions, but as the heir, her every query was catered to.

The first time she heard her parents argue was the time she received books on mathematics and astronomy from the plant’s head scientist as a birthday gift.

She’d outgrown those books, but never lost her fascination with mathematics or the stars.

Or the dreams of the man she could never meet.

“Princess, this is a really bad idea,” Lohris says for the tenth time.

“Come on, Lohr,” Kellis replies, “you asked me what I wanted for my birthday and this is it. You’ve got the codes and today is the only the ship is going to be unguarded. It’s now or never. Make up your mind already.” Lohris regards her with an intense gaze one more time before letting out a sigh and entering the code on the shuttle door. Kellis feels a twinge of guilt given Lohris’s feelings toward her. She’s received many lectures about manipulation over the years and the reasons under which it was allowable. A birthday lark in space most assuredly does not qualify.

Kellis pushes her guilt away and revels instead in the fact that she is stepping inside the most advanced space ship on the Royal Planet. Intended for short-ranged scouting missions, The Clavor is designed for speed and stealth. She and Lohris will be the first non-test pilots to take it into space orbit. Kellis has never been this excited.

Lohris’s hand hesitates above the ignition button. “Princess?”

She graces him with her best smile. “I’m certain, Lohr. Just enjoy it and when we get back, I’ll take care of everything.” Lohris smiles back in that sad way that she’s been familiar with for years and nods.

The ship begins to shake as the engines start. Kellis laughs as the runway flashes past and then disappears as the ship leaves the ground. She reaches out and turns off the speakers when they begin to emit squawks of protest at the unannounced flight. She has no worries – it will only be a moment before they pick up the royal transponder she wears in her jewelry. A welcoming committee of royal guards, and possibly family, will await their landing, but in the meantime, no one will interfere with the flight.

Her eyes widen as colors light up the cockpit’s viewport as the shuttle passes through the atmosphere. She looks over and sees Lohris glancing at her to catch her reaction. A test pilot, he is inured to these wonders, but he seems to be enjoying her delight. Lohris is a good friend. Perhaps the best. It’s a shame, but it isn’t why they are here. Kellis refuses to let the worries of everyday life darken this experience.

She is in space!

The stars are so bright and clear. Even the Royal Planet shines below them with a light paled only by the twin suns on the horizon.

“Is it everything you dreamed of?”

“More, Lohris. More,” she answers. Idly, she wonders if the man in her dreams has ever seen these sights? Don’t be silly, Kellis, she tells herself. He’s a childhood fancy. Nothing more. And yet, she wishes that he could be here.

The ship shakes with an impact.

“Frell!” Lohris curses.

“What’s wrong?”

“The defense system isn’t accepting the codes,” he says as he reactivates communications. “If they don’t override them on the surface-“ he stops, the rest of the answer unnecessary. She knows exactly how the orbital defense system works and how important it is to the security of the Royal Planet.

A light on the horizon grabs her attention away from Lohris’s distress call even as another impact rocks the ship. “Lohris, what’s that?”

“Hezmana, I don’t know, Kellis. Hold on, it’s sucking us in.”

She screams when a missile hits them harder than the previous laser fire. Lohris’s head slams forward onto the console and then remains limp. Frantic, she activates her own navigational controls and begins to pray to her ancestors as the ship enters the blue column of light. Outside the cockpit windows, lightning sparks everywhere and the tunnel splits into two time after time. Desperately, she steers the ship away from the walls and the dividers.

Tears stream down her face and she wishes she could check on Lohris. All she had wanted was to experience something new. To interrupt the tedium and indulge her fantasies of being able to do whatever she wanted with her life.

She wants the excitement to be over. She wants to stare at the stars from the safety of the ground with Lohris at her side.

It’s not to be though.

Relief cascades through her when the blue tunnel spits them out in a field of stars. She looks through the navigational info and feels hysteria begin to creep into her mind. There are no planets within a dozen light years and they are in a heavily damaged short range craft.

She’s gotten what she wanted. This is a birthday she’ll never forget.

*idea: princess takes a ride in a space shuttle w/out parents knowledge…wormhole sucks her back into past and she meets her father?*

posted above here

Color has finally returned to the girl’s face. When they found her, every inch of her skin had been almost Nebari grey except for the blue tinge of her lips. The doctor’s believe she’ll make it though. Something about the rapid loss of temperature after the life support failure protecting her brain. Somehow, Chiana doubts the child will be grateful. The same loss of temperature caused her shaking hands to drop the kill shot from the med pack before she could deliver it to her male companion. As a result, the concussion and other injuries were fatal.

Chiana waits, oblivious to the activity around her in the medbay. The doctors believe the girl is about to regain consciousness and Chi doesn’t want her to wake up alone. Not that the kid will know her at all, but still. After the heads Chiana had to break to get Nerri to stop and render aid to the small, forlorn shuttle, she feels possessive. And curious.

You don’t see very many Sebaceans out here in this part of the Uncharted Territories anymore. Nerri’s group came here specifically because they draw so little attention in this widely Nebari settlement. Well, very little attention so long as she and her brother stay safely on the ship and none of the operatives get caught in the Establishment’s nets.

Chiana’s attention is attracted when moans come from the biobed. “Hey, it’s okay. Take it easy,” she says as she gently pushes the girl back on the bed.


“Shh, rest. You’d been without enough air for a while before we found you. You’re on a ship in the Uncharteds. Safe as can be for this area of space, promise,” Chiana explains. When she hears the doors open, she looks over her shoulder to see that Nerri has joined her. Frelling doctors. They scurry to her brother with every piece of info, but she has to threaten their mivonks to find out what she wants to know.

“Lohris, where is he?” the girl asks. Well, demands. After spending so long with Jool, Chiana recognizes the difference. She banishes the memory before the hurt touches too deep.

“I’m sorry. Your friend didn’t make it.” The girl is strong. Only her eyes show the pain that the news causes. Chiana changes the subject. “So, where were you trying to get to? Maybe we can take you part of the way.”

“Nowhere really. It was a birthday lark, but there was a malfunction with the orbital defense system,” the girl says. “Lohris only took me because I’d been begging him to take me into space for over a cycle.”

Chiana squeezes the girl’s hand. Sebacean, orbital defense system, Chiana doesn’t like where this is leading. She doubts that Nerri would believe it even if she tried to explain. The Peacekeepers still have too many spies about. Worse, the Establishment has too many spies about and access to perfect genetic cloaking technology if they want it.

“Well, maybe you didn’t travel very far. Is there someone you want to contact?”

The drugs are taking over, so even with Chiana’s acute hearing, she barely makes out the next words: “Queen Katralla.”

“Frell!” Chiana whispers. Nerri’s questioning gaze pierces her when she turns around. For once, she’s scared to tell her brother exactly what she thinks. Despite the influence of the Eidolons, the Resistance is fighting a losing battle against the Establishment. The Peacekeepers won’t listen to their warnings, so they’re all on their own out here. The only bit of luck that Chiana has in this situation is that Nerri won’t suspect anything unless he’s told. She doesn’t plan to let the girl remain here long enough for that to happen.

Already her mind is turning with how to get the girl off the ship and to contact Moya. She hopes that Rygel is ready for some company because his planet is the only safe place she knows of right now and she might have to wait awhile for Moya to bring Crichton to her.

“All I’m saying is that it feels like a trap.”

John tries to count to ten so he won’t wake the sleeping toddler in Aeryn’s arms. Thank God that shuttle rides work just like car rides. He swears that Little D’ hasn’t slept for a full night ever since he turned two. So much for hoping that his Sebacean side would save his parents from the terrible twos.

“Aeryn, love, you think that everything is a trap. It’s Chiana. On Hyneria. We know that the mind cleanse doesn’t work well on the little frog. Not A Trap. You could have stayed on Moya.”

She smiles at him. “This way I’m closer when the two of you need rescuing. Like you said, it’s Chiana.”

John rolls his eyes and continues to follow the…well, he never did catch the term, but royal butler is probably the job description. Buckwheat the sixteenth is too high on the food chain to meet them personally at their shuttle even if they did save the galaxy from war.

He’s still surprised that Chiana requested they meet here. He doubts that Nerri would have come with her and she’s been pretty dedicated to the Resistance since…well, since everything except for Little D’ went to hell in a handbasket.

“Oh good, you brought my godson,” Rygel says, zooming straight for Aeryn when they are delivered to the throne room. “Reckel, take Crichton to the gardens.”

“Rygel,” Aeryn starts.

“Don’t worry, Aeryn. Perfectly safe. Chiana just wants to chat alone with him for a bit and I want to play with my godson. Go with him if you like.” Aeryn’s having to dodge Rygel’s sticky paws to keep him from waking their sleeping son, so John just winks at her and follows the butler down the hall. If it is a trap, better for him to go alone. A screaming baby woken from it’s nap does not aid a stealthy approach after all.

The gardens are as spectacular as he remembers from Rygel’s re-coronation. Garden is understatement – to his eyes, they feel more like the Florida Everglades. The butler leads him down a convoluted path until they finally reach Chiana. Surprisingly, she’s sitting with a beautiful young Sebacean. Even after two years of peace, John feels his hand settle on Wynona at the sight a Sebacean other than Aeryn.

“Good to see you, Old Man,” Chiana greets him.

“You too, Pip. Who’s your friend?”

Chiana squeezes the girl’s hand. “John, meet Kellis. Kellis, this is the friend I’ve told you about.”

John shakes his head. “Aeryn’s not going to go for the junior wife idea, Pip.”

Chiana cocks her head as she stands. “Whatever. Tell him who your parents are, Kellis.”

The girl, Kellis, looks at both them both uncertainly. “Empress Katralla and Regent John.”

Her words rock him to his core. “It’s not possible. They’re still frozen. Aeryn’s right, Chiana, this is a trap.”

Chiana grabs his arm before he can bolt. “It is. I was worried too, so I had Rygel arrange a scan. She’s only half Sebacean.”

“You’re lying,” Kellis interrupts. “I’ve lived on the Royal Planet my entire life. My parents are Sebacean and so am I.”

John’s head begins to ache. He was having trouble dealing with a two year old son. How in the hell was he supposed to explain the facts of her existence to a teenage daughter?

TBC possibly


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