"I could never in a hundred summers get tired of this." -- Susan Branch
|Word count: 467
John looked out the observation window in his room as the sunrise came into view for the sixth time that day. An aurora of green and blue danced across the energy shield as the sun came around the earth. He looked at his watch and dropped his book beside his bunk. After half a year of living without it, artificial gravity was great sometimes and, at other times, a nuisance. He returned the book to the fold-out desk and slipped on the virtual reality gear beside it. John sped his way through the start-up and synchronizing sequences. Another few steps, and he was once again in his room.
Opening up his contacts, he selected the top one for a VR call. The ringtone hummed as a picture of a woman with a little girl floated in front of him. The picture then shimmered and dissolved like bubbles in a drink, and there stood the woman in place of the picture.
"Selamat malam, istri ku." Said John as he stood up from his bunk.
"Good evening, my husband," replied Syndie with her sing-song voice.
"How was your day, babe," they both said at the same time. They laughed a little as they raised their hands to each other. Hands together, their equipment synced up, and they could feel their hands touching. Like a weightless dance they had done a thousand times, Syndie stepped and spun into John's arms, his head coming around her shoulder to the side of her face.
"I missed you today," Syndie whispered.
"I missed you too," John whispered back.
"Are you mad that I made you call so late?"
"I could never in a hundred years get tired of hearing your voice." John pretended to kiss his wife on the cheek, and when she turned her head and looked at him, he gave her a virtual kiss on the lips.
"I am just worried that you won't come back to us," Syndie finally said as she looked into his eyes.
"We're all done here, cinta ku," John half-whispered, "I will be coming home on the next shuttle back to earth."
"Promise me that you'll be safe," she whispered into his ear. "Adrianna is missing her daddy."
They turned to face each other hand in hand before embracing each other's silhouettes. Their hands tingling as they glided across the simulated touch of each other.
"How is our little girl doing?"
"She's doing good," Syndie answered as a smile came onto her face. "She fell asleep early tonight."
Her husband smiled wide. "She must have had a busy day."
"Your girl chased a frog around the yard for an hour before trying to bring it inside." She chuckled as she touched John's cheek.
John laughed as well. "That's my girl!"
"I know she is."
Word count: 467