Cabin Fever

The reconnaissance ship was incredibly small, having been built for durability, not comfort; the crew of the ship totalled twelve, but Recon Ship 1 had already reached its carrying capacity by the time that the crew had crowded into the small cabin. The air in the compartment was hot and thick, and each man and woman seemed to be holding their breath.

The room was far from quiet, but each conversation between the twelve crew members was short and uncomfortable; each member seemed to be anxiously awaiting the landing on the first inhabitable planet in more than twenty years. Most of the members of the crew had never been on a Recon Ship, much less on an alien planet. Besides the lead navigator, the pilot, and the lieutenant commander, none of the crew had seen outside of the Xiaro IV.

Ventran Siloux was among the rookies of the crew attending the planet though he had spent a great deal of his medical career upon the Xiaro IV. Siloux was what the other crew members called a "Bird in a Bottle" -he had spent eighty percent of the last ten years of his life on that ship. The ship was his home, the only real home he had ever had.

The Xiaro IV might have been his home, but it didn't satisfy every need. The young woman in front of him was the most attractive specimen that he had seen in six months, and he could hardly conceal his interest in her. After unsuccessfully attempting to strike up a conversation with three scientists and the two guards at the cabin's door, Siloux decided to give it a go.

The young woman's name was Aiaysa Lexx, and she was new to the ship. Over the past six months, she had spoken with hardly anyone on the ship and made -as far as Siloux knew- no acquaitances outside those she had needed for work. The rumors about her and the commander had started about two months after their departure, and they had seemed to do nothing to help her antisocial situation. Siloux had seen her at meal times several times - and had spoken to her on more than one of these occasions, but he had never been able to introduce himself. With no escape in sight on the small Recon Ship 1, Siloux decided that he might have a better chance of an actual conversation.

He left the corner where he had been pressing the two guards to tell him the secret of the lieutenant commander's first name -he refused to share the story with any but his own recruits- and made his way to the bench where Lexx had settled herself.

"Ms. Lexx?" he asked, giving her a smile and a half-bow. "Have you taken your immuno-enhancement injections for this trip?"

The End

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