Written by Darala Starr :: [Monday, 01 July 2019 20:48] Last updated by :: [Thursday, 04 July 2019 09:47]
Darala, Tina and Jason were together in Tina’s living room after dinner. Darala found the food to be excellent, although she desperately missed the far more nourishing meals on Tau Ceti Alpha. Neverthelss, she was satisfied, and it was after the meal that she proceeded to explain things to Tina, who was fascinated.
“So, you’re really… from another planet?” Tina asked, seated on her sofa, still in her shorts and T-shirt. Jason was standing in a corner of the room, his arms folded, listening closely.
Darala said, “Yes. A heavy planet with well over thirty times Earth’s gravity.”
Tina nodded and said, “That explains why here on Earth you are so strong.”
Darala said, “Correct. That and on Tau Ceti I’ve been training very hard, growing stronger even there.”
“Wow,” Tina said. “So you’re like as strong as fifty men?”
“Approximately,” Darala said. “When I first landed I’d forgotten about the ratio of my homeworld compared with Earth. In fact, it wasn’t until I was detained that my ship’s computer talked some sense into me and I escaped capture.”
“Escaped capture?” Jason asked, slowly walking back toward the sofa.
Darala decided not to divulge all the details about the Torellian masquerading as a human. There were some things she would need to keep to herself in order to successfully complete her mission.
“Yes. I won’t bore you with the details, but I got myself locked in a rather primitive holding cell. Once I realized the advantage I had, I was able to bend the steel bars apart and escape. After that, we met on the road and that’s where I feel I went too far. I was showing off my strength and if I hadn’t done that, this deputy Brown wouldn’t be so suspicious of me.”
Jason said, “Darala, what you did today was incredible. You shouldn’t feel that way.”
“Thank you, Jason,” Darala said.
“And you saved Kyle’s life,” Tina added. “I don’t know how we would have manually gotten into that vault without your powers, Darala. You are a real superwoman.”
Darala lowered her gaze and then broke into a smile. She didn’t understand the reference, but appreciated the sentiment just the same.
“I was so pleased that he wasn’t hurt,” she said.
“So what would happen if I went to your planet?” Tina asked.
Darala thought about it. “Well, imagine adding more than thirty times your own weight to your body. Your bones would most likely break from the stress and your lungs would implode, along with your heart muscle. Come to think of it, it would be very horrible.”
Tina thought about that and shook her head. “No thank you,” she said. “I’m happy right here on Earth.”
“I suppose I am too,” Jason added.
“Now,” Tina asked, “what exactly is this thing you’re looking for? If it ended up in our storage vault at the antique shop, perhaps if you describe it, I can give you some useful information.”
It sounded reasonable to Darala.
“Besides,” Jason said, “we’re friends. We want to help you in any way we can.”
His smile was so warm it gave Darala a very subtle tingle in her cheeks. It seemed Tina somehow picked up on this.
“So,” Tina said, “what does this thing look like?”
Darala said, "It’s a small cylinder, just over a foot long and perhaps four or five inches in diameter. There’s a small display panel on one side and Tau Ceti inscriptions along one part of the cylinder.”
Tina thought hard, then something came to her. “I know this is going to sound crazy, but there was this guy… very odd with these almost… electric eyes. Brought this thing in a small duffel bag and wanted to store it. I glanced at it, but didn’t really spend any time examining it. That was just over a year ago. He was so odd.”
The Torellian, Darala thought. He’s been interacting with people in the town.
“And now it's gone missing,” Jason said.
Darala nodded. Tina finally stood up from the couch and said, “Well, I don’t know about both of you, but I’m very tired. Darala, it’s getting late. I want you to have the guest studio. I’m sure you’ll find it’s very, very comfortable. You’re welcome to stay for as long as you like. There’s a private entrance so no one will bother you.”
Darala nodded appreciatively and glanced quickly at Jason, their eyes touching softly. She very carefully and softly pulled him into an embrace. “Thank you for everything, Jason. You are such a good friend.”
Tina cleared her throat loudly. Jason fumbled a bit and said, “I think I’d better go, it’s getting late.”
Darala smiled and lightly kissed him on the cheek. Her eyes met his and she was almost overcome with how handsome he really was, especially this close.
Slowly she turned and disappeared into the next room. A moment later they heard the outside door open and then close.
“I need a cold shower,” Jason said under his breath.
“Yes, you do,” Tina said, glaring at him.
“Tina, I’m sorry, it’s just that… she’s….” He was at a loss for words. “I know that you and I were growing….”
“Jason,” she said, “I get it. I’m not upset. She’s a real-life superwoman. And she’s gorgeous. But think about it… she’s not from this world. Remember the insane gravity, the broken bones and imploded lungs? You and she could never… be together like that.”
Jason allowed the reality of that to sink in. Tina glanced down at the front of his dolphin shorts, expecting to see pronounced growth as a result of Darala’s embrace and kiss. But from what she could tell, it seemed he was mostly in control.
“I will say, Jason, your control right now… is superhuman. Maybe you and she could be together. Or maybe, you and I can pick things up where we left off last month.”
“Tina,” he began. “I’m sorry about….”
She smirked and kissed him lightly on the mouth and gave his waist a firm squeeze.
“Just behave yourself,” she said. “Now go.”
A few minutes later after Jason left, Tina found Darala in the guest studio. She was carefully examining the space and seemed to enjoy the comforts of it, especially the very soft queen bed.
“This is wonderful, Tina, I can’t thank you enough for your kindness.”
Tina smiled and said, “Darala, it’s my pleasure. You are a most welcome guest. Here….”
Tina handed her a folded set of clothes. Darala examined them: a white t-shirt and a pair of those marvelous satin track shorts—just like Tina’s.
“Now,” Tina instructed her, “The shorts are a little snug, but I think they’ll fit you.”
“Thank you,” Darala said, turning them over in her hands, holding them up to the front of her hips.
“You can wear those to the gym tomorrow.”
“The gym?” Darala asked.
“Yes, it’s where Jason and I train with weights.”
Darala said, “That sounds wonderful.”
Tina said, “I just think it might be wise for us to stick together. The three of us. This world can be very deceptive and dangerous, Darala… no matter how strong you are. Do you understand what I mean?”
Darala nodded. “I think so.”
“Well,” Tina said, “Goodnight.”
Darala nodded appreciatively, and Tina excused herself and left, pulling the door gently closed behind her. Three minutes later, Darala had changed from her mission suit into the shorts and t-shirt. She found a full-length mirror in the bathroom and stood in front of it, examining herself. The shorts were perfect on her, the satin playful and shiny.
She twirled in them and enjoyed seeing her legs in the open. Darala squeezed her leg muscles and they hardened immediately, the hardness and shape of them astounding.
“Wow,” she said. She moved her attention to the T-shirt and noticed how it complimented her arms and chest. Darala squeezed her bicep into an iron peak, the shirtsleeve sliding up to her shoulder to give way for its size.
Just then she heard the computer’s voice in her bracelet.
“Darala Starr, where are you now?”
Darala answered, “I’m staying with a friend. And she let me borrow some human fitness clothes.”
Darala flexed her leg one more time. “I look so amazing in them!”
There was a note of exasperation in the ship’s computer voice.
“Darala, do you have any idea where the transponder is?”
“No,” she replied. “But I know where it was.”
“What is your plan for locating it?” The ship’s computer asked.
Darala looked at the door to her guest quarters and for a moment thought about what might happen if Jason were to come through that door and how they could do what she wanted while controlling her incredible strength so as not to injure him. But then her gaze fell on her mission suit and she thought about how saving young Kyle felt. It felt good. And what was it that Tina called her earlier…a superwoman. The term was unfamiliar, but moment-by-moment, as Darala stared at her mission suit folded neatly on the bed, a new confidence rose within her.
Darala said, “Don’t worry. Darala Starr, the Tau Ceti Superwoman will complete this mission.”
“Superwoman,” the ship’s computer said. “Darala are you sure you know what you’re doing?”
Darala said, “I’ll call you back,” then turned off her bracelet communicator.