The First Her

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Part 44

Kira rubbed her face. Too much was going on. Just recently, she discovered she was still pregnant. Now Earth was gone, human women were lost in the wilderness, and Vrox wanted to marry her.

It was nearly impossible to keep up with the craziness of Ezron.

As soon as she took care of Terra, she went to the common room in search of a distraction. Most of her recent inventions were baby-oriented– bassinets, strollers, breast pumps. That day, she felt inspired to make something for the men. Most of their tents were of wood, leather, and rope. She wanted to make them metal-enforced tents that could easily be folded. She just needed to map out the infrastructure first.

“Isn’t it crazy?” Nebula asked after a few minutes of working silently. “We’re all that’s left. The last women.”

Kira sighed, her shoulders heavy. “It’s fucking awful. So many great women lost.”

She saw what Ezron became after the Vanishing. Government shut down, crime, mental illness and suicidality took over, society was divided. Earth would suffer the same fate.

“Hi.”

Lamara appeared by the entrance with Kyros right behind her. Instantly, Kira stood up instantly and offered her a seat.

“Hey. Take a seat.“”

Lamara thanked her and scanned the room, her eyes locking on Terra’s bassinet.

“She’s sleeping, but you’re free to hold her when she wakes up.”

Lamara rubbed her temple. “An alien baby… and I’m about to have my own. I have so many questions for you.”

Kira nodded. “I’m sure you do. Is there anything you want me to tell Kyros, by the way? I can translate for you.”

Lamara blinked, as if she hadn’t considered the option. “I don’t think it’s necessary. I understand him.” She looked at Kyros and gave him a tender smile.

Kira and Nebula exchanged their own smiles.

“There’s a device, a locket, that can transplant the Ezronian language into your brain. I would prefer if you didn’t use it, though. Not while you’re pregnant. Nebula can teach you a few words. She got pretty good at reading and writing the language.”

“I would love that. I take it that neither of you speak Korean?”

Kira shook her head. “Nope. Are you Korean?”

“Yes. That is why I have a thick accent. I was a part of the Korea Aerospace Research Institute. They were partnering with NASA for the Mars project. And that is when…” she swallowed hard.

Seeing that she got upset by the reminder of Earth, Nebula said, “I’ve been trying to map our location relative to Earth. Do you think you can help me?”

“I would love to. Space is my life.”

“By the way, how is your pregnancy going? How many months along are you?”

Lamara frowned. “I’m not sure. I haven’t kept track of the weeks, but the fetus is definitely growing at abnormal rates.”

“Oh yeah, Terra arrived at a whopping six months, and I have her twin still cooking inside me.” She shrugged. “Don’t ask me how that’s even possible.”

“Six months? Incredible. That reminds me, why haven’t I seen any women walking around?”

Kira exchanged a look with Nebula.

“Ezron had a Vanishing fifteen years ago. Only men remain.”

Horror crossed Lamara. “Oh…”

To distract her, Kira offered, “Why don’t I show you this tent structure I’m working on?”

The girls buried themselves in work. Vrox stopped by five times to check on Kira. He touched her whenever he got a chance. It appeared like nightly intimacy wasn’t enough to sate him. He wanted to caress her swelling stomach, her back, her arm, her cheek.

Kira was too weak to stop him.

“How was your day?” he asked her later that night.

“Fine. I got to know Lamara better. She’s settling in well, but she’s shook over the fact that Ezron also had a Vanishing.”

Vrox nodded. “That is reasonable.”

“She’s well-educated. I’m hoping that she knows enough about physics to help me with some engineering stuff. Maybe we can get a motor running within a few years.”

“Good. That is good.” He slid off the bed and helped her fold Terra’s blankets and clothes. They worked efficiently together. Silence no longer discomforted Kira, and neither did the thought of having sex with him. As shameful as it was, she found their nightly sessions therapeutic.

“I need to ask you something.”

She looked at him. “What’s that?”

“What are your thoughts on capital punishment?”

She set down the blanket she was folding and pushed her braid over her shoulder. “Well…” she started, her heart beat stuttering. “It’s not practiced where I’m from, but that doesn’t mean I want the same for Ezron.”

“What do you want, then?”

He sat on the bed and pet the spot beside him. She sat down, her thigh pressing against his.

“I just wanted to know why Ezron doesn't have trials."

"Because we have a plant that forces the truth out of people once consumed. A truth serum that is highly effective without fail and has been in use for centuries."

Kira smiled. "See? That's it. I just wanted to understand."

Vrox stared at Terra’s crib. “What did you want to say about Terra’s inability to take the throne?”

“Well... I have deeper thoughts on that. I don’t think she should be denied her birthright because she’s a girl. I think she deserves a chance to prove herself. Maybe she could face trials when she’s older. Will you pass this idea to the Council for me?”

Vrox stared at the distance.

“Will you say something?” she fidgeted.

“Come with me tomorrow. You can present you ideas to the council yourself.”

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