Chapter Nine, Part Two: Fish and ChipsMature

A smile lights her face. He watches her lips curve, red as cherries, across a tanned mask of carefully mocked indignance as she angles her way toward him. 

“And here!” he calls to the small ballroom-intended sea of fishbowls on custom hover-pillars, reaching out an arm in white to his wife as he matches her smile. “A morsel of food, nay, but she’s not angry anyway!” 

“Shouldn’t you be calling me Emily? Benjamin darling?” she teases, reaching down to fit long hands nicely to his pregnant belly. 

“Yes, dear. Hrm? Oh. Oh! Oops.” he flounders, grasping at verbal straws while the one in his mouth bumbles about across the wild terrain of his pouty red lips. 

“Close your mouth, Benjamin,” her finger says as she clamps him shut with a trim nail, manicured and natural. “…you’ll catch flies when you ought to be attracting other kinds of prey.” 

“Like you?” he gasps, turning into a ripe beet as she plays with the Easter egg swell of his small stomach where it bulges beautifully beneath a stretched length of creamy toga drape. 

Her greyish greenish eyes turn blue with wonder and she glares at him, the happy laughter in her gaze deepening as she drinks him in. She takes him by the arm, digging her fingers light as a child’s into the tame olive-ochre folds of tunic cloth at his side and the rich milk bends of toga spilling down from his left shoulder, and guides his front in the direction of the food. 

“I was thinking of you needing to eat. You’re looking pale, my love. Let’s go see if they’ve got anything more substantial than… ” she stares at him then, her almond-shaped eyes widening as she takes in the sudden chalky color of his face.

The End

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