Raymundo perched on the edge of the captain’s chair. Becky paced in front of the wall, reading the screen and mumbling as she walked. Each step echoed, drowning out the words and leaving Raymundo raising his eyebrows and biting his tongue.
“Do you think it will work?” Raymundo asked.
“I’m not a geneticist,” Becky paused, turning her head towards Raymundo, “but perhaps. DJ’s right in that it’s not likely to do DNA tests on every single one of your tissues.”
Raymundo sighed and leaned back in his chair. “But it’s not impossible. And… if someone were to dig, or try to sequence it, I’d be found out.”
Silence filled the room. The white glow from the screen cast Becky’s shadow across Raymundo until she moved to sit next to him. Her fingers trailed up his arm and then rested on his shoulder.
“Breathe. You are sounding like paranoid Ray again.” His chuckle came out broken. “What would make you feel less paranoid?”
“If humans went back to living a bucolic lifestyle and stopped trying to know everyone’s business.” Ray reached up and curled his fingers around her hand. “It was so much easier for my ancestors to hid their secret.”
“And the other option, since I can’t help you convince eight billion people to go back to living closer to nature and minding their own business, is you run. Like one of your ancestors mentioned if Star Surfer had been capable of flying.”
“That’s not feasible either.” Raymundo nodded towards the screen. “Even the closest extra-terrestrials capable of traveling close to the speed of light, I would die long before reaching them since Star Surfer’s warp drive is still broken.”
Becky pushed her chair closer to Raymundo and leaned against his shoulder. “Sure, Star Surfer’s doesn’t work. But you mentioned there was a rescue mission, and one ship left with two Qwortarians.” She turned her head, nuzzling his neck. “But the second ship never left, did it?”
“I see where you are going with this.” Ray rested his head on Becky’s. “I’m not taking on the government again. The shape shifting is something they are looking out for now.”
“Oh no,” Becky giggled. “I wasn’t suggesting that. You should be you, the brilliant mechanic you are, get hired, and then steal the technology from right under their noses.”
Raymundo’s laugh was fuller, brighter, the echoes through Star Surfer’s halls making the whole ship feel alive.
“Thanks Becky,” Raymundo wiped a tear from his eye, “I needed a laugh.” Becky smiled, though she was only half joking, in order to hear his laugh, she let him think it was all a big joke.
Word count: 442