Galen frowned, wondering it there would be a long wait. He supposed no else had either. There was a line at the showers, but after glaring at everyone irritably for several moments, it finally dawned on him that they could use the time to take care of other pressing matters. Women, he knew from experience, tended to be squeamish on the subject of bodily functions. When they reached the door, he gave her a nudge to urge her inside and then strode off to take care of his own needs.
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Galen frowned, wondering it there would be a long wait. He supposed no else had either. There was a line at the showers, but after glaring at everyone irritably for several moments, it finally dawned on him that they could use the time to take care of other pressing matters.
Women, he knew from experience, tended to be squeamish on the subject of bodily functions. When they reached the door, he gave her a nudge to urge her inside and then strode off to take care of his own needs.
She was red faced when she emerged some time later. The bath almost proved to be too much temptation. He studied her surreptitiously as he handed her a kilt. She looked it over doubtfully, dismay and reluctance evident in her expression. He sighed. He knew it was different from what she was accustomed to, but it was all they had. She was a Valarian now of Draken—or maybe he should say Draconian?
Perhaps the weavers can produce it? He frowned when he saw that the biggest majority of the men looked the worse for their celebrating the night before. This was confirmed when he got his first glance at the city site beneath the dome.
Shaking his head, he led Bree to the techs, who were still struggling with deciphering her language, and explained to them that Bree would help them find the key to cracking it. The men brightened immediately.
Maalen, one of the youngest of the colonists, looked from him to Bree doubtfully. He touched his chest. She shook her head, then, smiling faintly. Is Maalen. Bree obediently repeated it and then told him it was called a wall.
He crouched and touched the floor. Still uncertain of whether he was trying to teach her their language or wanted her to teach him hers, she moved from one object to another and touched each, carefully enunciating the word for them. When she looked at Galen questioningly, she saw that he was grinning at her in pleasure. Casting around in her mind for something else, she used her arms to encompass the entire room and gave them that word and then waved her arms over herself.
Bree is my name. We called this planet, this world, Mars. We named it Mars. You named it Draken. My world is Earth. I am a woman from Earth, from the United States of America. We call ourselves Americans. Galen moved toward her, pulling her into a light, but possessive, embrace.
His expression was hard to decipher, but he no longer looked amused. Realizing finally that he wanted more input, she struggled to shift gears and try to figure out what key words they would need to learn to understand, and possibly speak, English. Nouns were fairly easy. Finally, she decided to give them a lesson in biology, naming most of the body parts. She decided she would have to demonstrate the verbs—or at least the ones she could.
She stopped to catch her breath—which put her in mind of breathing. Taking some sort of instrument, he got up from his console and led her from the room. They toured the entire facility from top to bottom. She caught a glimpse of Galen when they left the building. A trail of robots carrying building materials led from one end of the building to the other side of the dome where Galen seemed to be directing the construction.
Glancing away from Galen when she saw him begin to turn in their direction, she sucked in a sharp breath when she saw the sun. It looked so impossibly small! Her belly cramped as it sank into her fully for the first time that she really was standing on another world. And home was so very far away! She shook the disturbing thought.
Not impossibly far, she reminded herself sternly. Not but what that might have taken forty forevers considering how stubborn their government leaders were, but It made him vaguely nauseated, made him feel oddly threatened. Also By Angelique Anjou.
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