by Ruth Draves
For the Daily Flash fiction contest. using the words key, blink, and worms
|"You never blink, do you?"
I raised my eyes away from my workstation. Officer Katta shot me a glance before turning to the new ensign, a kid named Ryan.
"We do not have eyelids as you do, so no," Katta murmured.
"That is so weird, dude!" Ryan exclaimed.
"Ensign!" I snapped.
"Oh yeah," Ryan mumbled. "I'm sorry, Officer."
"Take this to Gravitational Mapping.” I handed Ryan an infopad. Katta and I waited until the door sealed behind Ryan.
"I am sorry for his behavior," I started. Katta silenced me with a rather human-like shrug.
"You are not responsible for the lack of manners of your fellow humans," Katta replied. "But it does surprise me there are still members of your race who do not follow protocol.”
"Young humans can be impulsive," I conceded.
"My dear Officer Morales, I am fully cognizant of how impulsive humans can be. I have a full memory of your first years on board," Katta murmured.
"Please do not mention those worms again!" I grinned.
Katta shrugged again. "It was amusing at the time."
"I was quarantined for an entire pay cycle!”
Katta pursed its lips in amusement. "You feared that your superior officer would 'lock you up and throw away the key,' if my memory is correct."
"Of course, it is," I laughed. "You were very forgiving at that time," I added.
"I saw that there was potential in you," Katta murmured.
"Thank you," I said as I held back tears. "I know what that means coming from you."
"You have refrained from mentioning my new affectation," Katta showed off the shrug again.
"You do that very well," I grinned.
"I decided to take on a human mannerism. Perhaps I will take on more," Katta pursed its lips.
"Just don't call me dude," I laughed.