Flora: Landing PartyMature

"And I am pleased to announce that we shall be landing on the pleasure planet Dunakis in mere moments. We ask that you remain in your seats until the ship has fully landed." The voice on the intercom informed me and the other three people in the landing pod.

Craig, the bloke sat opposite me, smiled at me again. Would he not leave me alone? He had tried talking to me on more occasions than I had been bothered to count and I was sick of it. It wasn't as if he had anything interesting to tell me.

My publisher, Debzie was sat next to me, typing into her little com-pac. She infuriates me on a daily basis but I humour her since she gets me the good gigs.

"Anything new?" I asked, grinning at her.

"They want you on the other side of the galaxy in a week's time. They want you reviewing Yalenk and it's beautiful scenery. The local government has paid rather well." She winked at me. I half expected her to put her hand on my thigh and squeeze but she didn't. Thanks for small mercies.

The other man kept himself to himself, not saying a single word for the whole journey. I didn't think it was odd - I just assumed that he was asleep or something. It was only when he looked up and I saw in his eyes that I realised something was wrong.

His eyes weren't eyes. They were cameras. He was paparazzi. They had found me.

I didn't let on that I knew; instead I nudged Debzie with my elbow and nodded my head in his direction. She looked at me knowingly. They shouldn't have found me; not this quickly at any rate.

I had been very much in the public eye of late due to my fling with a couple of royals. It hadn't been anything major, just a couple of one night stands but you know what the media is like. I looked over at the android, smiling softly. I could see the shutters snapping shut over his eyes, the images getting filed away in his brain of information. I winked at him before reaching into my jacket pocket. I waited until the android lowered it's head before pulling out my golden ring and placing it on my finger. I held my hand up in front of my face and examined the reflective surface.

I turned to Craig and, holding a single finger up to my lips, I shushed him. He looked at me, confused. I simply winked before  reaching out to shake the hand of the android. It tilted its head to look at me.

"Nice meeting you." I said with a smile.

The android nodded before taking my hand. I could feel his robotic fingers curl around mine, pressing the gold against my finger. I nodded and he released my hand. The ring had done what it was supposed to do; it had erased all of the data the android had stored in its mind. Something to do with magnetism or something - don't ask me, ask the manufacturer.

"You too, Craig." I whispered, blowing him a kiss.

The pod landed on Dunakis rather softly and we all quickly and quietly made our way out into the beautiful sunlight. Debzie ran off to her room to deal with some personal emergency or other and left me to wander. About an hour later, I got lost. Not so good for a travel writer of my calibre.

Luckily I met a rather lovely young man who offered to help me.

"Why thank you! I'm Flora by the way," I grinned at him before having a little look at the woman he was with.

"Matthew." he said as he took me towards the restrooms.

"It's so embarrassing." I muttered. "I'm normally really good at finding my way around." I fluttered my eyelashes a little to try to get his attention.

"It's no problem." He replied, looking back at the woman and the boy, clearly his family.  I smiled at him.

"You don't happen to know where reception is do you?"

He looked straight at me and smiled innocently. "It's that way." He pointed a little to the east of the way we were going. I thanked him and he looked at me again. He didn't recognise me. At last someone who doesn't know who I am.

"Would you mind showing me?" I asked just before I nipped into the restroom. He had nodded a reluctant agreement. What a nice guy.

The End

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