Fabian worked long hours, but he spent as much time as he could at the Sample house, talking to Zahra. They filled the air with talk about computers, new discoveries at the science institute, and stars a million light years away. He was a beat cop now, but his dream was to get back behind a computer keyboard and become a forensics expert. Zahra should have realized that he’d never have moved this far away from science without a plan.
But it didn’t take a rocket scientist, or more effectively, a social engineer to figure out what he wanted.
Fabian had a gift for gab. He knew just what to say and how to say it, and he was even better at NOT saying things in a way that made them perfectly understood. Zahra’s husband was not just dead. He was dead twice over. She could let her life end here too, or she could start building something new. He’d rather if she was going to start something new, she did it with him.
But did she want something new with anyone? Zahra had spent her whole life loving Cycl0n3. She’d never expected to find herself single.
Things started to get out of hand.
Then they got really out of hand.
Was this what she really wanted? It certainly felt good.
Zahra spent a lot of time alone, thinking about what she wanted her life to be, and eventually things fell into place. It really was about choosing life over death. She wanted to love life again. And Fabian’s devotion had always been unwavering. If there was anyone in her life she could trust, it was him.
Zahra hated parties and crowds, fancy dresses and pretty jewelry. When she knew what she wanted, she invited Fabian to meet her alone at the beach at dusk.
There, she asked him to start a new life with her.
“I thought you’d never ask,” he said with a twinkle in his eyes.
And so, still frightened, Zahra stepped into the unknown.
(Woo. I’d always thought that Fabian would make a good alternate mate for Zahra, but when I got a look at his traits, he’s like her perfect man. He’s just like Cycl0n3, except with Charisma and social skills.)