“I want my own bed!” Moray lamented, sprawling on the small bunk they had in the restraining facility.
He glared at the man and pushed his big boots away again as they brushed against his jeans. Yeah, so did he, but what can you do? His boss was an ass and his co-worker even managed to top that.
To calm down, the younger alien had said. He hadn’t slept a wink since they pushed them in here to share one bed. Then at least given them the place with two bunks. But he guessed it had went for the rest of the quartet.
It wasn’t really the missing bed that had kept him up, he’d slept in worse places, or the buzzing of the blue ceiling lamp that had switched on the moment the main lights had gone out for the night. He was trying to understand why Eren had left them like that all of a sudden. There had to be a reason and it wasn’t because they were caught up in a fight. A simple look on security tapes would have cleared that misunderstanding in no time.
“I said, I…” Moray started again, nudging him with his boot, but he pushed it away.
“It’s your mess we’re in here for!” he grumbled. If they were still on Earth he could at least watch Moon through the windows, but here the only entertainment resembling an art form was the guy’s tattoos. Long, twisted veins of flowers running from spiderwebs.
“Besides, you slept soundly, so…”
“No, I didn’t.” Moray’s grin replaced with a frown he’d seen earlier and he looked away.
“I know.” He whispered, looking back at the tiny scratched in hole in the paint in the opposite wall. He’d been watching him and his twisting around. Neither of them had been in a good mood in a long time, probably why they felt so good around each other at this point.
„So,” he started with a sigh, “why did we end up here?”
“You’re not my mother!” Moray announced with no respect, sprawling himself over the tiny bunk and forcing his boots straight into his thighs despite the earlier warnings.
“I feel sorry for the woman, who raised you.”
His head spun up. “Why not for the woman, who bore me?”
“She’s long dead I hear, but the sweet woman, who put up with your moods for the past thirty year must still be alive.”
“No,” he stretched again, moving his boot a bit, but it remained a painful reminder in his thigh. “she’s long dead too.”
“Then out of respect to those two, spill your guts so I know it was for business that I spent a night in this bunker!”
The younger man didn’t say anything for the next few minutes, massaging his thigh like a cat. He didn’t like it one bit, but put up with it in hope he’d give him something to go on. It was obvious he had been in bad mood and he wanted to know, why.
“I wanna quit my job.” Moray said, when he was about to declare defeat.
“You can’t. We won’t have enough men in our team to finish the job. You know that.”
“I do. But I still want to get out of here.”
“Why?” Sinclair knew he had a wife back home, but the youth had been rather enthusiastic about coming here, when the job opportunity came. Given, the paycheck was fatter than on Earth. Was her running into wall with Jeanine? He was afraid to even ask about that. He wasn’t in his early youth any more and he’d broken enough women’s hearts because of his job to know it wasn’t getting easier over the years. It wasn’t because they didn’t understood his priorities, but he wished they could find somebody else, who put them first.
Had he asked it aloud? “Then what?”
“Mabel’s with child.”
He wasn’t surprised, but he chuckled still. He didn’t even know, why he was acting like this.
“I still want the kid…” he heard him mumbled before hiding his face from him.
“God, you’re a romantic!” He sighed. “So, she’s with kid and you run back to her? If you want it, you need money to raise it.”
“Him, I’d get a son.”
That’s nice, but it did little to change the fact he needed money for it and as far as Sinclair saw it, it was the best he had on him.
“I don’t get you two at all.” He said, patting his boot.
“You don’t have to.”
“You still need money, romantic, and lots of it if you want to take over another scumbag’s responsibilities.”
“I don’t care.”
“She will care when the bills start arriving for food, for clothes, for diapers…”
“Diapers!” Moray snorted as if he’d said something utterly ugly and funny.
“Yeah, you’ll see lots of them.” Sinclair sighed. He remembered his sister and her husband letting their kids run but naked in the garden while the laundry dried in the sunny day. Given, their humble home was far away from the cities and thus nobody cared, but somehow that was still the only thing he could remember about the quartet. That was before landslide took their entire home in the middle of the night and buried them under mountain’s worth of mud in the valley down below. At first he’d mourned for the loss of them, especially her fair haired sister’s before realizing that had she survived, she’d be forever in pain for losing her other half and their two kids.
He shook his head. He didn’t want to go back there. It was fine to remember the washing day instead of that part.
“Earth to Sinclair!” Moray tugged him with his boots.
“Sorry, you were saying?”
“I think they’re coming for us!” Moray pushed himself up and sat straight as if he hadn’t just spent the entire night horizontal.
Sinclair cleaned the side of his trousers with few swaps before hearing the footsteps coming closer. Two guards that had arrested them yesterday. The third one, who had opened the door yesterday wasn’t with them, but he could hear them counting numbers on the board and the door moved away.
So this was the alien his future chief had set his eyes on? He looked up, straight at the duo and took a good look at the man, who was the real reason they’d spent the night here. The alien was smaller than Eren and was far slimmer, but he couldn’t be sure with all those clothes covering his torso. Still, he nicely filled out his suit and it didn’t drag around him, giving him a fit look. He wasn’t very old, taking in count the two blood-like stripes running from the edges of his mouth. Older aliens had them stronger, yet this guy’s were yet to bloom, so to say. He liked his eyes though, dark and stern and with attitude. He liked, when guys had attitude, but he wondered if Eren would take that. Eren was chief’s son, but he had rather no-bullshit take on most people around him and if challenged, they never stood down. They – as him and Eren. Maybe it was good though, if this alien really was Eren’s other half, then he had to have an ounce of pride in him or he’d be stomped all over. He wasn’t armed now, despite seeing the stave they used yesterday. He wondered what other weapons they were using on board. They couldn’t be fire arms, but he doubted they were left without means to protect themselves or take down suspicious people should there be reason for it.
Not bad, he nodded with agreement. The alien glared him down at the same time as if he’d just insulted him greatly, but Sinclair answered it with wide smile, which he knew they were unfamiliar with. He nodded lightly and got up, stretching his muscles while Moray mockingly imitated his movement.
“You’ve been paid for, time to go back.”
“What time is it?” Sinclair asked, ignoring the other man’s chatter. They’d removed everything besides their clothes.
“Seven and quarter.”
Simple seven and fifteen minutes would have been sufficient, Sinclair sighed, but didn’t say anything.
“Eren’s gonna put us in shift?” Moray groaned loudly and Sinclair kept back the urge to knock some sense into him.
“Should have slept when you had the chance, beauty. Now your ugly mug is missing it’s usual shine and is just ugly.”
Moray huffed, but didn’t answer the coaching, but then snickered quietly while the alien nudged them out, beckoning them to follow. They did and for a moment they walked in silence through the small corridor surrounded by small holding cells.
He let his gaze fall lower and watched the way both aliens moved their hips. Both were limping their left side a bit, although it seemed natural now to their body, which meant they’d been using the same weapons for a long time. He kept his eyes on them.
“Bingo!” he whispered when a small corner of a holster appeared from under the left side alien’s hem. They were carrying simple sword like knives, which they most likely were very good at.
The younger alien turned to glare at him over his right shoulder, but Sinclair had nothing left of his curiosity on his face by that time and instead he looked straight at him. Few seconds later he turned back and they kept walking in silence. Sinclair used the time they had left and lowered his gaze once more. His eyebrows flew higher – the younger one was carrying a hidden knife despite all the lectures and search through that had left him without his. Well, only as far as they knew it. He still packed a few. Seemed this guy had the same caution in mind, although he would have gladly suggested the guy painted over the very top of the knife. It glinted so nicely against the bluish light in the corridors.
They reached the front desk of the cell complex and the aliens stood aside, leaning casually against the counter while some new girl was finishing with the paperwork for Eren.
The bastard shined like sun, all rested and showered, perfectly set up to impress with his ten minute hairdo, clean shave and black t-shirt that hugged him just in the right places before reaching his thick work belt and large baggy trousers that were to prevent the sparkles reaching to his more prized areas.
Sinclair arched an eyebrow, both angry and amused, reaching out for the coffee cups in the holder. Eren greeted them as if he’d been a very good boy and deserving a reward.
There were the same two plastic baskets neatly set on the counter and the lady gave them more forms to sign that listed the items they’d given away and what they’d received back. Sinclair read them over carefully while Moray just jotted down his signature and grabbed his stuff. There seemed nothing wrong and so he followed Moray’s example. Then they wished the entire team down there a good day and headed for the elevator while gulping down their coffees.
“Was this some lame excuse to get a night alone…” Sinclair started, then his eyes flickered towards what Eren was looking at. The alien. He felt frustration running down his spine as he let out a loud, not very subtle sigh before leaning closer to Eren’s ear and whispering. “So we are clear, boss, I’m not spending another night in jail so you can check over a hotty.”
Moray snorted and coffee went flying from his nostrils, coughing like crazy while Sinclair and Eren grimaced. Damn, he hadn’t taken in count the space – of course he could hear them!
“You’ll be reason they’ll stop allowing coffee in elevators!” Sinclair murmured, patting him hard.
“No!” Moray shouted after he had regained at least some of hold. “No changing the subject…” he coughed again, choking on the words. “You let them take us…” he coughed again.
“First!” Sincalair started instead of Eren, who was now grinning widely like a cat on cream. Sure he was feeling happy – his plan had worked, hadn’t it? “ You deserved it! Joining a fight like that. What were you thinking? Next time come and find us. Or at least use the language mothers took their hard time teaching us and say you ache for a fight!”
Moray sank back, away from Sinclair listening him put all his own frustration into the words.
“Secondly, yes, he used us for that.”
Sinclair sent Eren a wide grin which died pretty much the same moment when Moray crouched his neck a little to do the same.
“I can’t believe this!” Moray started with anger, but the elevator’s doors opened and Sinclair left, leaving others no other choice but follow.
“You needed time to cool off.” Eren said coolly, back in his boss mode.
“So?” Sinclair turned, giving his cup to Moray before braiding his long blond hair into fishtail. “Is there at least breakfast?”
“Shoot!” Eren’s eyes widened.
Both Moray and Sinclair let out a loud argh. And before their lovelorn boss could even manage an apology, Sinclair dug into his pockets for the last change he had on since last night, took his cup from Moray’s left hand, replaced it with two fives before taking Moray’s cup and shooing him back towards the elevator.
“Whatever it is! As long it’s not a salad!” he shouted after the boy and turned, not looking at Eren and kept walking towards their work station, murmuring. “I don’t care. I ain’t working without full belly.”