I took a last look at the ballroom the Rising Star had set aside for our use. They weren't charging us a thing for the space since it was the food and drinks that were going to cost an arm and a leg. But my brother deserved the very best now that he was finally landing the big one. Half of Starbuck's side was going to be his old girl friends. The squadrons had decided to split up half-and-half so both sides were going to be full.
It was amazing how many people wanted to watch Apollo and Starbuck get sealed. Cassie joined me after checking the flower arrangements one last time. Every thing was as perfect as we could make it and I thought about all the mess and fuss of the last two sectons. Did I want that for myself? When Cassie slid her arm around me, I decided that it probably was.
We both loved dressing up.
"Why are you grinning, love?" Her voice sounded just under my ear and when she licked 'that' spot, I shivered.
"Just wondering if we want to do this again when we're ready?" I decided to be brave and when I looked down into her blue eyes, I saw only love.
"Maybe. Then again there's something to be said for eloping and going straight for the honeymoon." She brushed her lips over mine and I melted. There's something magic about her that just turns me inside out.
"Now, now, none of that, ladies." Father interrupted us before we could go any farther. "We have a sealing to attend to. Where are Apollo and Starbuck?"
"Your son drank too much last night and is head down at the moment with Starbuck giving him a back rub." I had promised Apollo instant retribution if he got sick during the ceremony.
Adama only laughed and continued up the aisle to the beautiful star burst that hung over the table/altar. High Priestess Hestia had already spread out the golden cloth that signified union under the symbol of the Lords of Kobol. She was meditating beside the altar and had been for the last centar. As people began to enter, Cassie and I slipped into the side room where the lucky pair waited. Apollo was slightly less green than he had been just a few centons ago.
"The guests are beginning to arrive, brother. Up and at'em." My voice was bracing and I watched him shudder.
"Not so loud, 'The. My head is just barely hanging in there." Apollo sighed as Starbuck soothed a sore spot on his back. "I promise I will never drink again."
"You guys need to get dressed unless you want to get sealed in your uniforms."
"Frack no! The Captain and Lieutenant aren't getting sealed. Apollo and Starbuck are." My brother turned over and sat up. "All right, I can do this. Help me up, Star."
"Uppsy-daisy, love. I've got you." Starbuck smiled and pulled him up into his arms.
"You certainly do." Apollo held on to him and closed his eyes. "All right, I'm fine. If you ladies would excuse us, we'll get all dressed up for you."
"No sneaking out the back, you two. If you're not out there in 30 centons, we're coming after you. Both of us." I do 'mean' pretty well if I do say so myself.
"Don't worry, Sis, I'm not letting this one get away." Apollo smiled at the man holding him up and I watched the two of them go to a different world that existed only for the two of them.
I recognized it because it's where Cassie and I go when we're alone. Maybe that spot is reserved just for lovers. She smiled at me as if she could read my thoughts before going over and pressing a medical stimulant to the side of Apollo's neck right over the carotid artery. He flinched once then his face smoothed out with the relief from the pain.
"It's good for about six centars so once you get where you're going, get some sleep and your body will naturally right itself. No more than a swallow of ambrosia when you toast each other." She reminded them before coming back to me.
"Remember, you've only got 25 centons now." I reminded them before leaving them alone. Cassie came with me and we took over for Father welcoming the guests so he could keep an eye on Boxey.
A few moments before time, Father sent Boxey in to get his parents. With a swell of music from the speakers hidden in all four corners of the room, they all three appeared with Boxey holding on to both their hands and grinning so widely I was afraid his face would split. But then I could feel the same smile on my face.
Finally, my brother was choosing the person who loved him more than anyone else in the universe. For some reason, my vision kept blurring while I watched them come up the aisle in their matching outfits of simple white shirts tucked into white leather pants which were in turn tucked into knee-high white leather boots. The full sleeves billowed just a little and I heard a sigh race around the room from all of Starbuck's former lovers.
But they couldn't know the symbolism behind the choice of outfit. Apollo had come up with it and Starbuck had protested with a shudder but I'd watched my brother take his lover in his arms and tell him that instead of death they were celebrating life. My soon-to-be brother-in-law had gone quiet, resting his head against Apollo's shoulder. And that's when I knew that they were remembering the ship of lights and those strange entities who'd given Apollo back his life and Starbuck back his love.
Starbuck had obviously given in because here they were standing in front of Father and giving their responses to his set questions. But when High Priestess Hestia came forward with the golden cord and tied their wrists loosely together, looking up at them with her wise eyes, the ceremony took a different turn from most of the ceremonies I'd attended.
"Starbuck, what do you give to Apollo?" She asked calmly.
Those big blue eyes met my brother's with such a shining look that I felt as if I shouldn't be seeing it. "I give him my love . . . and my life."
"Apollo, what do you give to Starbuck?"
I couldn't see his eyes but Starbuck's were tearing up so I could just imagine the look. "I give him my life and all my love."
"Life is short or long, depending on the will of the Lords. But love lasts forever. You have loved before and you will love again. I see eternity in your eyes. Cherish each other and make of your lives ... one soul ... one heart ... one body." She closed her eyes and the golden cord began to glow, filling the room with a soft wash of color that left me feeling tingly all over.
"May the blessings of the Lords of Kobol be yours for all of your days."
They moved together as one and the kiss went on and on and on. Boxey was giggling quietly by Father's side and Cassie's smile was luminescent. It was too much temptation for me to pass up and I kissed her softly, only to have her pull me in closer for an even deeper caress. We were both panting by the time the muted cheer went up around the room.
Pulling back with an effort of will that made me tremble, I watched them slowly end the impressive kiss and a quick look at the audience told me that Cassie and I weren't the only ones ... inspired to mimic them. The feeling of light and love pulsed through the room like a heartbeat, bringing all of us into its rhythm. The High Priestess was beaming up at them and the gold cord was nowhere in sight as they each kissed her cheek.
"Now that you are Sealed in the sight of gods and men, I believe we have a party waiting for us." She smiled and took one of Boxey's hands, leading him and Father down the long aisle.
Cassie and I stepped forward to kiss them both. Starbuck tasted different to me and I realized that he had indeed become my brother. Cassie and I went arm in arm down the aisle knowing that Apollo and Starbuck would be close behind us. Then the guests would join us in the party hall.
A centar later, I watched Starbuck casually leave one group of pilots and sidle around the corner out of sight. Cassie had her eye on Apollo and a moment later she murmured to me that he'd made his escape. We grinned at each other and waited for a count of ten before we followed. Father had an arm around each of them and the beaming look on Starbuck's face told me that he liked wherever the old man was sending them on their honeymoon.
Cassie and I hugged them both and promised that Boxey would be fine before watching them depart for two sectons. Father threw an arm about each of us and guided us back to the party, refusing to tell us where they were going. He just smiled genially and asked Cassie for a dance.
He can be such a pain sometimes. But he is a good dancer and I co-opted Boomer for the dance floor so Cassie didn't get swept away. A centar and a dozen partners later, I finally got her back and we moved across the floor slowly, staying on the edges away from some of the more ... energetic dancers. She snuggled into my arms, resting those soft blond curls on my shoulder.
"I wonder where he sent them." I said idly, my hands smoothing little circles over her shoulder blades.
"I know. Tigh let something slip." She chortled against my throat and I felt myself shiver.
"I think I need to be ... persuaded." She licked that little spot beneath my ear.
"Um ... I can be very persuasive."
"Really? I think I'd like to see that." And she wiggled just enough to make me catch my breath.
The little minx was teasing me and it was her turn to shiver when I lightly ran my nails across her shoulders. "Well, I do my best work in private. So ..." I nipped her earlobe. "My place should be private enough."
"Your place it is." She sighed and lifted her head, her hands drawing me towards one of the exits.
Entwined around each other, we made it back to my quarters without shocking any passerby. But once the door locked behind us, we started undressing each other so we ended up in bed only wearing matching silk camisoles. My lips nudged one of the spaghetti straps off her shoulder and down her arm baring a beautiful breast for me. Kissing my way around the silken flesh until I reached the pert nipple, I settled in between her legs for my favorite snack.
Her hands combed out my hair from its formal upsweep for the Sealing. A scalp massage always makes me purr and tonight was no exception. Finally, I got her other breast exposed and blew across the luscious nipple that peaked hard for me. She's really sensitive there so I didn't play too long before heading down to her mons. The silky skin denuded of hair surprised me.
"When did you have time to do this?" I licked delicately at the smooth folds that hid her secret essence.
"Oh ... this morning. Oh there ... right there." Her hips moved restlessly and I stole a quick look up to find her hair spread out over the pillow case while her head moved back and forth in time to my movements.
So I went back to 'there' interspersing licks with gentle nips that brought her hands to my head in an unconscious urge to guide me further. I had two fingers buried in her now, searching and finding that small spot that warmed her into a frenzy. That's when I began to suck strongly, rewarded by her panting moans.
Which is when I stopped all movement and grinned up at her. "So, where are they going?"
Her eyes opened in disbelief. "You're stopping now to ask a question?"
I wiggled my fingers a little and let my hair fall gently over the stimulated flesh. "Yep, it seemed like a good time to me."
She moaned. "You're an evil woman, 'The."
"Takes one to know one." I blew against the wet skin and the ripple went all the way up to her breasts.
"Ocean I. Adama booked one of the inner islands for them." She was back to panting.
I paused for a moment thinking back to my tour of the Fleet and the brief impression I had of the ship that held our aquatic life. "Starbuck will be in seventh heaven. He loves to swim. I hope Apollo doesn't get seasick."
"He'll be fine, 'The but I won't be if you don't get back to trying to persuade me." Her plaintive whimper sent me back to her pleasuring and it wasn't long before she shook herself into release.
I love it when she does that. Especially when she lets me concentrate on what I'm doing. When we come together is always special but these moments when I'm the only person she's thinking of are most satisfying. I drank her down like a fine wine then slid back up to her breasts to nuzzle there until she came back to me. I love the cuddly way she clings to me after she's climaxed. I'm probably unbearably smug at that moment but she hasn't called me on it yet.
Thinking about Apollo and Starbuck, I thought back to the ceremony and the flash of ... something that had filled the room. Maybe it was the herald of a period of peace and contentment for the whole Fleet. Then again maybe it was just a promise of the love they felt for each other spreading out to encompass all of us.
It was a nice dream but for the moment, I held my dream in my arms and she was tugging me up to her lips. We kissed gently then with a flex of muscle she flipped me onto my back and settled into place between my legs.
"I believe you said it takes one to know one." Her grin was incandescent with a touch of evil. "You're right."
And with laughter and tenderness, she proved it.
End part 12