Chapter One: Jason and Jordan

by Zarek Dragon (In collaboration with True Fan and Douglas DD)


16 June 2118


JaceIt was the summer of 2118 and I couldn't believe that I was on the transport going to Space Camp. I even got into the program that I wanted, I was really too old, but the image with my file made me look young enough so they sent someone to come interview me. One visit and he thought I just had a typo in my date of birth. In case you are wondering, I was applying to the Space Camp Robotics Division, for nine to eleven-year-olds, and I was twelve. Mom and Dad made sacrifices for me to be able to go and I can never thank them enough.

When it was over, my team won almost all of the awards. We shouldn't have gotten one, but someone hacked into the computers and changed a score. I won't mention my name.

Then in May of 2119, just days before my thirteenth birthday, some guy in a military uniform came to the house. At first, I thought maybe he found out what I did and was there to arrest me, but he asked Dad and Mom if he could speak with them. I was still nervous even though he never once mentioned the hack, but I did hear my name mentioned a few times.

Finally, they called me into the room. I was scared and walked in slowly, with my head down. It took a while, but I was beside my dad and he told me to sit. Dad looked at me and what he said really scared me, "Jace, you're going to be going away for a very long time, but I want you to know that your mom and I love you very much."

I was about to cry, "I'm sorry, I only changed one score, but we deserved the score I gave us, I know we did." Dad gave me a "don't be a sissy boy" look.

The man in the uniform spoke gruffly, "Jason, you thought your hack went unnoticed, but it was noticed. At the time, we didn't know who had hacked, but we did investigate. You did an excellent job of covering your tracks and we wouldn't have even noticed except, the person who gave you that low score was going to fix it. It had been nagging him all day. Can you imagine his surprise when he saw it was already fixed? He agreed that you deserved the grade that you inputted, so we didn't continue the investigation too deep. We did have our suspicions, though. But that's not why I'm here."

I was surprised to say the least. I hadn't counted on him changing the score, and now I was curious. Why else would he be at my house talking my parents about me? What had I done to deserve this? With what Dad had said, I was nervous, to say the least, but I had to ask, "May I ask why you are here, then, sir?"

The man smiled, "We know that your team excelled because you were on it. In fact, you took lead for your team and advised everyone of what to do. We also know that your birthday is coming and you actually will be thirteen soon. You don't look it."

I smiled, "Yeah, I age slowly. It's a genetic disorder I inherited from my Dad's side of the family and it only seems to affect males. It kicks in when a boy starts, shall we say, 'growing up,' or roughly the age of ten. After puberty, our aging really slows down. Dad is thirty-three, but look how young he looks."

The man chuckled, "Yeah, when your dad answered the door, I thought he was an older brother and asked to speak with your parents."

I continued, "My 4x grandfather recently passed away at the age of 110. He was still asked for ID when he bought alcohol."

Dad added, "He looked to be just under twenty-three and a half years of age. And he acted it, too."

The man looked like he didn't totally believe us so Mom brought up photos showing how little the men in my family aged compared to their wives. He studied the pictures thoroughly until he was convinced of what I was telling him. The man didn't exactly answer my question and I was getting even more curious, so I asked again, "So you never really answered my question, sir, why are you here?"

"Fleet Admiral Mirah is putting together a space program for boys just twelve years old to sixteen. I can't go into detail at this time, but some of those selected will go on a mission. The program was just approved and I was sent directly here. My name is Colonel Javier Savage, one of many sent out to recruit boys we believe would be appropriate for the program. We would like for you to be in the program. As an incentive, we offered your parents the usual signing package as well as a refund on your Space Camp stay."

I looked at my parents, my mom looked like she was about to cry, "Baby, it's your decision. I think it's an opportunity to do what you really want and you may not get it again. Just know, I will miss you."

Dad looked deeply into my eyes, "I know you want to do this, but I can understand if it scares you. As long as you give it your best shot, I am proud of you. The Colonel says that the program generally takes five years through the Academy. I hope to see you graduate."

I may have come across as cocky, but I stated, "If I can set my own pace, I'll do it in three."

Col. Savage chuckled, "You've been watching that Star Trek movie from 2009 with Chris Pine, haven't you? He said almost the same thing."

I responded, "It was a good movie, especially for that time period, but I'm serious. I'm graduating from high school this year, only five years early."

Col. Savage smiled and said, "I saw that in your file. With how you excelled at Space Camp, and the skills you demonstrated, I'd like to enroll you in our Information Systems Division, or ISD for short. If you excel as much as you believe, then perhaps we can add a second major."

"Can it be anything I want?" I inquired.

Col. Savage replied, "We would prefer something that works hand-in-hand with ISD, like engineering, but I suppose you could decide."

"Cool," I let slip, "and for the record, I was thinking engineering. Dad found an old Dodge Challenger from 2016 and let me rebuild it. Unlike its original design, using current technology, the vehicle hovers and is capable of doing 483 kph. I've replaced her entire body and everything steel with alumitanium molded to appear like the original part. Dad says that I can't drive her until I legally obtain a driver's license, but he thought I would have fun making her into something special."

Savage smirked, "Alumitanium, eh?"

I thought he might not know what alumitanium was, how arrogant I was, so I went to explain, "Yeah, from its name, you may think it's an alloy of aluminum and titanium. It's not! Alumitanium is a recently created synthetic metal that is light like aluminum but strong like titanium. It's resistant to oxidation, can be used to shield from extreme temperatures, and is easily replicated."

Savage chuckled, "I know what it is. I can see why Mirah specifically requested you for this program. I take it that you agree to be a part of it?"

Becoming once again a little nervous, I queried "Do I need to go pack a bag now, or do I have time to say goodbye to my friends?"

Savage said, "I hope you have your valedictorian speech ready. You will graduate from high school in less than a month and a transport will be arranged for a couple of months after that so you can start the fall courses."

16 August 2119

*** Cadet Journal Entry

This is my first day as a cadet in the Academy.

Once I was at the Academy, I was really nervous. Here I was, only recently turned thirteen amongst a whole group of thirteen-year-olds. I didn't feel there was anything special about me like when I was in class with eighteen-year-olds, making them feel dumb. I was so nervous, I headed for the refuse receptacle to empty my stomach. Col. Savage was standing beside me; I felt like I'm letting him down.

He tried to calm me, "Yes, most of these boys are your age or younger, many are almost as intelligent as you are, but remember, most of them have only completed their sixth or seventh year, some are still in the Prep School. I have a feeling that you will shine amongst them."

That did make me feel better, but I also felt like I had more pressure on me. Savage insisted that a little pressure was a good thing, he claimed that pressure can turn a lump of coal into a diamond. He forgets that it's more than just pressure, there's also heat and time involved. And I'm pretty sure he just called me a lump of coal.

Jordan RiversAs we entered what would be my quarters for the duration, there was another boy already here. He looked at us and I thought I saw the most beautiful being. He stood at 1.702 meters (5 feet 7 inches) with a swimmer's build. For being only thirteen, I was surprised to see he had already lost his baby-fat. His jet-black hair was still shoulder-length. I had heard that the military gives everyone a buzz cut, so either this wasn't true for us, or this boy hadn't received his yet. I hope it's not true because I like this boy's hair like it is. He had deep brown eyes that made me hungry for chocolate, and a smile that melted my heart. I felt weird as I stared at him. I've never felt this way towards anybody before. And him wearing only a towel didn't help.

I was lost in thought as Col. Savage chuckled. He tried getting my attention., "Jason, oh Jason, ummm, Jason." Finally, he raised his voice, "Cadet Blackwell! This is your roommate."

The boy walked over and held out his hand, "Hey gorgeous, my name is Jordan. I'm guessing that your name is Jason."

Did he call me "gorgeous"? Has he looked in the mirror? I took his hand and didn't want to let go, "Yeah, ummm," I swallowed hard. I could barely think as his smile made me feel like goo. I finally got out, "Yeah, my name is Jason."

His smile made my knees feel so weak, "Jason is a good name, but I like Jace. Do you mind if I call you Jace?"

I couldn't believe how I responded, "You can call me whatever you like. Er, um… I mean, my dad calls me Jace, but I it sounds better coming from you. I mean uh, yeah, sure you can call me Jace."

Jordan giggled as I fumbled with my words. I loved his giggle. Then he noted, "So, this program is for twelve-year-olds, and older. You look a little young to be getting in."

I thought, 'Am I going to have to explain this to everyone?' as I explained why I look younger than my age. Jordan responded, "That's cool, maybe that's why they assigned us as roommates and I'm glad they did." Then he flashed that smile at me before continuing, "Most of the 12-13-year-old boys are going to prep school. It's nice having a roomy going to the Academy, especially a gorgeous one. Would you like me to help you unpack?" There he called me gorgeous again. I may have to explore that with him. With a smirk, Col. Savage asked if I still wanted a tour but Jordan spoke up, "Sir, I have been here for almost a week with nothing to do except explore. If you have other things needing your attention, I would be happy to show the new Cadet around."

I saw sort of a pleading in Jordan's eye as he spoke. Col. Savage must have seen it too because he grinned. I noticed that he does that a lot. Anyway, he nodded and replied, "Thank you Cadet Rivers, I do have other duties needing my attention."

I looked at Jordan and asked, "Did I hear him right? Is your name Jordan Rivers?" I had to stifle a laugh, but I don't think it went unnoticed.

"Go ahead and laugh, everyone does and I don't mind. My parents thought it would be funny. I guess they were right." I noticed that he wasn't really smiling.

I told him, "I'm not going to laugh, I think it's a beautiful name for a beautiful boy. I can see why your parents would think it was humorous, but only if you find it so."

He looked at me and smiled again, "Did you just call me beautiful?"

"Well, you called me gorgeous earlier, twice," I shot back.

"You are gorgeous. If you weren't already my roommate, I would have done anything to try and get you in my room. I hope I don't scare you away, but I'm gay and very attracted to you."

I swallowed hard. He admitted that he was gay and attracted to me, to me, he was actually attracted to me. I had no idea that I even might be gay until this time. I've never really been attracted to anyone until I met Jordan. "Ummm, no, you're not scaring me away, but how do you know you are gay?"

He explained, "Well, I haven't even experimented if that's what you're wondering. The most I've done is kiss; otherwise, I'm as virgin as they come. For me, it was I don't find girls the least bit attractive like most boys do, but I have seen some good-looking guys I've fantasized about. None of them compare to you, though."

I admitted, "I have never found anyone attractive in that way, that is, until I met you."

He had the biggest grin on his face, "You think I'm attractive?"

I started blushing, "Well, yeah, especially when you smile. When I was zoned out earlier, I was thinking of how much I wanted to kiss you, but was afraid you would punch me. I'm not saying that I'm gay because these feelings are new to me, but if I am, I wouldn't mind finding out with you."

Jordan took my hand and held it gently. He looked into my eyes and slowly moved closer. Our lips touched, and I was drawn in wanting more. Jordan's tongue touched my lips and I don't know why but instinctively, my mouth opened. I could feel Jordan doing some deep exploration into my mouth. This was my first kiss and I am happy that it was with Jordan.

As he backed off, all I could say was, "Wow, if that kiss is any indication, I am definitely gay, at least when it comes to you. But this was my first kiss ever."

Jordan smiled and my heart fluttered, "I'm guessing that means you liked it. I have to admit, that wasn't my first kiss, but it was the first one that I actually enjoyed. I'd love to experiment with you, but not right now. I promised I would give you a tour so I need to get dressed."

I looked at Jordan and asked, "Can the tour wait for a few? The ride in the transport was hot and I was stuck beside a boy who hasn't showered… like ever, I think. Col. Savage was going to give me time to freshen up a bit."

Jordan looked so caring, "Of course you can freshen up. I was just getting ready to head for the showers myself when you and the Colonel came in." His hair felt damp when we kissed, so I'm wondering if he hadn't showered before we came in. But then, I wouldn't mind his company, so I guess it doesn't really matter.

Jordan led me to the showers and we decided to conserve water by using just one shower head. He washed my back and I did his. Then he whispered, "In the short time since I've known I was gay, I've fantasized about sucking a cock in the showers. Can I live that fantasy with you?"

I looked at him nervously and asked, "What if someone comes in?"

Without hesitation, Jordan joked, "I won't mind if they watch, maybe they can give me pointers on how to do it better." Then he lowered himself to his knees and his mouth felt so warm as it engulfed my thirteen-year-old 12.7 cm (5 inches) penis. It felt so good that I became weak in the knees. If Jordan didn't have his hands on my butt holding me in place, I might have fallen.

Jordan seemed to be enjoying himself, and if I said I didn't like it, I'd be lying. Suddenly I felt my whole body spasm. It was nothing like I had ever experienced in my life. I fell back against the wall while Jordan continued until my body calmed down. I asked, "Wh... wh… what was that?"

Jordan let my penis fall out of his mouth and gave me a smile. He informed me, "You had a dry orgasm. If you liked that, wait until you actually cum. You're thirteen so it could happen any time."

After the shower, Jordan took me on the tour. What I thought was cool, he held my hand like we were boyfriends and no one said anything about it. I liked it, I mean, I really liked it and believe that I love Jordan.

Once we'd returned to our quarters, Jordan explained that he was born locally so it didn't take long for him to get here. He said that a Captain Tekia approached him right after he completed his eleventh year. He would be finishing his twelfth year as well as training for the mission. I guess we better make good use of our time, he may be too busy.

A couple of days before our first class, we were given physicals to be sure we would be able to perform the necessary tasks. Then the day before my first class, I was called into Dr. Picardo's office. He looked at me and said, "Young man, I'm not sure what happened with your DNA test, but it appears some reptilian DNA mixed in with it somehow. I would like to take another sample?"

I was nervous, but asked, "Do I have to give another sample? I'm not a fan of needles."

"We don't use needles for DNA testing. In fact, I've already collected a second sample."

It was a few minutes when a lab tech walked up to the doctor. She was whispering, but I heard every word, "Doctor, the DNA has the same results. They show that the boy is only half human. He's also half Draconian."

"Draconian?" Dr. Picardo challenged, "I didn't realize any still existed. That would explain why the boy ages slowly and is very intelligent. When the Draconian race first landed in Edo, what is now Tokyo, they had quite a long lifespan, like around 900 years. The purebred Draconians either went back to their planet or died off here. Radiation from our sun mixed with merging their DNA with humans has reduced their lifespan to around 100 to 150 years. When their DNA merges, it always retains half the Draconian and half the human DNA, but they only produce a male offspring. And the Draconian intelligence is off the charts. This young man will make an excellent officer for someone."

The Tech looked dumbfounded, "If you didn't think any still existed, then how do you know so much, Doctor?"

The doctor answered, "I still had to learn about them in Med School and I became intrigued, so I did research. Mirah is hoping that at least one of the ships encounters the planet from which they came."

I didn't know what to think, but what the doctor said made a lot of sense. I wonder if Dad is aware. I'll have to ask him. This information also explains why only the males in the family are affected. It's not a genetic disorder at all.

12 April of 2120

*** Cadet Journal Entry

I can't believe how fast the year has gone by. Jordan and I are sharing my bunk and I have discovered that I am definitely gay, or at least when it comes to Jordan. He is so versatile that we have experimented in any way we could think of. I won't go into details but when they say the first time hurts, they weren't lying. I'm not sure who screamed louder, but we both definitely knew when the other entered.

Jordan actually completed everything he needed to graduate from twelfth year, so we only had to focus on classes for our training, leaving plenty of time for more experimenting.

Sunday will be Easter, so we were expecting to have Spring Break. Were we surprised when one of the instructors scheduled a test on Monday. When asked about Spring Break, the instructor informed us that we weren't little kids anymore and the Military doesn't take time off. I thought the instructor needed some time off.

After classes, Jordan and I went back to our quarters and were preparing to go shower when someone knocked on our door. I wrapped a towel around myself and opened the door. It was Colonel Savage.

"Greetings Cadets," he stated. We saluted and greeted him back before he continued. I almost lost my towel, causing him to chuckle. "Cadet Blackwell, do you remember when you said that you would complete your training in three years?"

"Yes Sir, I was a bit arrogant," I stated. "As I hope you can see, I have matured at least a little since coming to the Academy."

Savage gave me that grin that I have become accustomed to, "I am here today to say you are in fact, on course to do just that. After this session is completed, I would like to add the Engineering program to your curriculum."

I couldn't believe my ears. I knew that I was applying myself as best I could but I never realized that I was meeting my goals. "Are you serious, Sir?" I asked.

Savage chuckled, "Yes Cadet, I am. Let me guess, you didn't think you were doing so well?"

I was flabbergasted but I managed to say, "I knew I was acing everything, Sir, I just wasn't aware of how far along I was. I was afraid you were here to tell me that I was on course to complete the course as scheduled. Of course, I would love to add the Engineering to my curriculum, Sir." I was ecstatic.

Jordan looked at me, "That will be cool. I was thinking of taking Engineering as a secondary. My main elective is Operations."

I forgot about Savage being there and replied, "Babe, you will make a great operations officer, and I would love taking Engineering with you." And then I kissed him.

I overheard Savage chuckle as he said, "I believe that's my cue to leave. Starting with the next session, you will have IS and Engineering as your primary electives. And Cadet Rivers, don't be surprised if you are offered the course. You are a bright cadet, but I have never seen a cadet like Mr. Blackwell."

Jordan barely got his thank you out before Savage left.

11 May 2120

*** Cadet Journal Entry

I know that I haven't been sharing to my journal entries regularly, but today is special. I'm only sharing those times important to me and the story.

I'm not sure who leaked out to Jordan that I was born on the eleventh of May, but he found out that today is my fourteenth birthday. Being it's a Saturday, he told me to get dressed and then took me to his parents' house. I couldn't believe how he introduced me, "Mom, Dad, this is Jace, the boy of my dreams, the one I want to marry once we are old enough."

His dad walked over to me, "So you are Jace, the one who has my son ever so happy. It's nice to finally meet you. Jordy has told me so much about you." Then he shook my hand.

Mrs. Rivers gave me a hug and whispered, "Jordan has never been happier since he's met you. I suspected that he was gay long before he confessed his love for you. Last time he visited, he told us today was your birthday and he wanted to do something special. We suggested that he bring you here."

After she let go, I was surprised how accepting they were. I know this is the twenty-second century, but I still hear stories about people not accepting gays. I'm glad that Jordan's family isn't among them.

We ate a nice seven-course meal with the seventh being cake and ice cream. Then I opened presents. Mr. Rivers gave me a robot kit. He thought it was kind of lame, but didn't know what else to get me. I told him that I loved it and would challenge myself to make it better than the original design was.

Mrs. Rivers made me a martial art outfit. It was dark blue and had secret pockets. She claimed, "Jordan says that you are the top student in your martial art class at the Academy. I hope you like it."

I told her, "I love it. I can even use it for when Jordan and I go jogging after classes."

I started to open Jordan's present and he started to blush. He said, "I meant for you to open that in private." I chuckled when I had it opened and held up a dark blue jock strap. Mr. and Mrs. Rivers gave Jordan a knowing look and just laughed.

When we were finished, it was dark so Mrs. Rivers suggested, "You boys don't have class tomorrow. Why don't you spend the night? I'm sure Jordan won't mind sharing his bed."

Come Christmas, Jordan and I requested time off to visit my parents. We'll spend time with his for him to open presents, but they understand that I want my parents to meet their son. I just hope they are just as accepting.

20 December 2120

*** Cadet Journey Entry

Jordan and I had to work hard to make sure all our work was done before we could go visit my family. His family gave us (not just him, they included my name) a seventy-two-inch vid screen. While in the dorms, I don't know what we will do with it, but it looks really nice. My worry is, what if we get separated. I told Jordan that since it came from his family, he should hang on to it until we are back together.

We dropped the vid screen off in our dorm before boarding the transport to take us to my home. Jordan was all excited about meeting my family. He was asking all kinds of questions about them. I told him that the last vid message I received told me that Mom was ten months along into having another child. Oh yeah, I found out that Draconians take longer to birth, too. Wouldn't it be cool if she gave birth on Christmas? Dad's already planning to name him Christmas.

We stepped off the transport and made our way to my house. Dad greeted me with a hug and then looked at Jordan. He asked, "Who is this? We were expecting your girlfriend Jordan."

"Dad, this is Jordan, but he's my boyfriend," I exclaimed.

I had never seen my dad so irate. I think his eyes turned red, he was so mad. He started yelling, "YOU'RE A FAGGOT? GET OUT OF MY HOUSE AND DON'T COME BACK UNTIL YOU FIX THIS. I DON'T CARE IF IT TAKES THIRTY YEARS. YOU WILL NEVER SEE YOUR BABY BROTHER SO LONG AS YOU LOVE THIS BOY!"

I was stunned, "But Dad, there's nothing to fix, I didn't choose this. I'm still your son."

Dad walked to the door, "I SAID GET OUT. YOU ARE NO SON OF MINE; I AM NO LONGER YOUR FATHER. AND TO THINK, MY WIFE AND I SACRIFICED FOR YOU." And then what really hurt, he spat on me.

Jordan tried comforting me and telling me how sorry he was. He felt as though he was the one who caused my issues with my father. I told him that none of this was his fault, my dad was just being close-minded and I gave Jordan a kiss. We took the next transport to spend the rest of our time off with the Rivers.

When we finally returned to our quarters, there was a package on my bunk. I opened the package and there was a note from my mom. I was a little scared to read it after hearing what my dad yelled at me, but she did send my Christmas present. I handed Jordan the note and asked him to read it.

He read, "Dear Jason, I want to apologize for your father and the way that he reacted. I understand that you are in love with Jordan. I wish I had a chance to get to know him. He looks very handsome and even Silver Monogrammed Mugsfrom across the room, I could tell that he loves you. Your father thinks that I took your present back, but I wanted you and Jordan to have it. Love Mom."

 With a tear running down my face, I opened the present and pulled out four silver coffee mugs with blue J's on them. They looked exquisite and expensive. A tear ran down my face, knowing how much Mom loves me.

12 February 2121

*** Cadet Journal Entry

Time flies when you are too busy to notice. I was informed, I had a meeting with Commander Bowman. He will be captaining one of the deep space exploration ships; there are twenty total, or so I was told. Somehow, he was given first pick, so his crew will be the elite of the cadets and only the best will be chosen. As I approached the room for our meeting, I stopped in front of the door and knocked. The Commander opened the door, he looked younger than I expected, maybe seventeen or eighteen. I walked to in front of the desk and saw several personnel folders on the vid screen, waiting to be opened. They were organized, probably by department. The commander took a seat and I salute, "Sir, Cadet Blackwell reporting as ordered."

The Commander saluted back and told me, "Have a seat, Cadet. I see you are taking two courses here at the Academy, is that correct?" That was when I noticed, my file was opened but minimized on the viewer.

I was nervous, but I answered, "Yes Sir, I was excelling in ISD, so I was offered Engineering Division as a second primary elective."

The commander maximized my file and scanned the pages with his eyes. I awaited patiently for his next question or comment. "I see you are excelling in that field as well. Would you consider yourself a genius?"

"Sir, while I believe I do have a high enough IQ to qualify as one, I wouldn't be so arrogant as to make that comment," Boy have I matured. Before I joined the Academy, I may have answered, "You better believe I am."

The commander looked directly at me and said, "Tell me something about yourself that isn't in your file. Why do you believe I should choose you to be on my ship?"

I swallowed hard. I didn't know what to say, so I ask, "Does my file say anything about why I was chosen to be a part of this program, Sir?"

Commander Bowman didn't look happy, "It mentions that you hacked the systems at Space Camp? Do you think I should choose you for THAT? If so, this interview is over."

"No sir, that wasn't what I was implying. You asked for something not in my file, and having not read it, I was curious. I didn't want to repeat what is in there," I tried. I became nervous, but tried to hide it, maybe too good. "Although I was only twelve at the time I did the hack. Since then, I have been at the top of my class in both ISD and Engineering Division. What else helped me to be selected for this program was that starting at the age of ten, I had been rebuilding a hundred-year-old car, modernizing it and replacing its hull with Alumitanium. I didn't know if that was mentioned in my file. I programmed the computer to replicate the parts I needed. If I could do that almost five years ago, imagine what I can do for the ship now. The hacking did help with getting me noticed, but I believe I've proven my skills in both the ISD and Engineering Division since. I've had the top scores in both and I know I can only improve."

The Commander looked at me and I didn't know if I would be selected or not. He said, "That is impressive Cadet, if I select you, you will be contacted. That will be all."

I stood up and was about to salute him, then leave, but I had to ask, "Sir, if you do select me, may I request that you also select Cadet Jordan Rivers? He has proven himself in his fields of study as well and I believe he would be an asset to your team even more than myself, both as an Operations Officer and as an Engineering Officer. And…" I paused, not sure I should continue.

Commander Bowman glared at me, "And what, Cadet?"

Without another thought, I replied, "I love him, Sir. If you select me and not him, you would be separating two people who love each other very much. Could you imagine how you would feel, separated from the person you love more than anything?"

Bowman looked at me, "My duty is to select those I believe to be the best asset for the ship, but if I select you, I will consider your request."

I gave Commander Bowman a salute and said, "Thank you, Sir. That is all I can ask." When the Commander returned my salute, I left the room.

I got back to my quarters and Jordan was waiting on me. He asked, "How'd it go?"

I felt bummed. I looked at Jordan and said, "I think I blew my interview. For the first time in my life, I don't feel so confident in my abilities. I don't think Commander Bowman cared much for me."

Jordan moved beside me and started massaging my shoulders. "That sucks, switch into your athletic gear and let's go jogging. Maybe that will help you feel better."

Before I could move, there was a knock on the door. Jordan answered it. As he opened the door, there was an upperclassman standing there. He sounded firm, "Cadet Rivers, you are to report to Commander Bowman on the double."

"Understood, Sir," Jordan replied and then he looked at me, as if to say, "Sorry." Once he was gone, I decided to take a shower and go to bed. I hope he gets selected, even if it means we get separated. I only want the best for him.


I felt bad leaving Jace in the mood that he was in. I'm sure he understands that I was ordered, but still… I'm hurting for him. I get to the room for my interview and knock on the door. As the Commander opens the door, I saluted and said, "Cadet Rivers reporting as ordered, Sir."

The Commander returned my salute and told me to come in and have a seat. As he sat down, he said, "I've been reviewing your personnel file. You were top student in your Operations Class and second in Engineering."

I remarked, "That may be true Sir, but I still have a lot that I can learn. Given the chance I will do my best to do so."

The Commander gave me a smile, "That's an answer I like hearing. Do you know who beat you in Engineering?"

I felt a little pride, but not too much. I respond, "I believe that would be Cadet Blackwell, Sir. He is the best that I've seen at anything we do. Almost everything comes so natural to him. In fact, I've never seen him lack confidence until he returned from his interview with you. He returned to our quarters sure that he messed up for the first time in his life. Please give him another chance?"

The Commander lost his smile, "You're not here to discuss Cadet Blackwell. I want to know about you. What makes you so special? Why should I choose you to be on my ship?"

I looked down, knowing that I was probably making a big mistake, "I'm sorry Sir, but I am nothing special without the backing of my boyfriend. If you don't want to choose him, then you probably shouldn't choose me. A position on your ship would mean the world to me, but Jace, er, I mean Cadet Blackwell means even more."

Bowman looked at me and said, "Thank you Cadet, if selected, you will be contacted. That will be all." I saluted and left. I hope that Jace isn't upset with me for possibly throwing away the biggest opportunity in my lifetime. Once we are old enough, or if we are separated, when we get back together, I hope to marry him.



End Notes:

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