Matt returned his gaze to the balcony where He fully expected her to throw him off. “So why did you come tonight?”
“You invited me.” Matt felt that feeling flooding over him again. This time he fought to stay focused and somehow could keep the feelings at bay. “This is not the time.”
“Not the time? I’ve been waiting for you all my life.”
Beads of sweat formed on Matt’s head and he felt the familiar tension in his groin. There was the sound again in his ears as if a frequency was being sent. He looked at her as if he was dying from starvation. No, “I’m sorry Princess but I can’t.”
“Don’t you know who I am? I’m Jihan.” She rocked back and forth and wanted to cry but she was too angry. Who did he think he was “You have to know about the prophecy that I have saved myself for you. I had faith to believe you would come. Every night I searched the sky for your ship. Men have fought over me. They laid riches at my feet, all to no avail. But the MAJOR has the nerve to refuse me. How did this MAJOR FELLOW get the nerve to refuse the most prized possession on the entire planet?”
Matt had trouble believing a beautiful princess would even want him. Still he felt strangely flattered. He hung his head and kneeled in front of her. “The truth of the matter is I do like you. Why wouldn’t I?” Hell, I wouldn’t be the first Officer to take advantage of his rank. I even have your consent. Matt reached up with his hand and wiped a tear from her cheek. “You’re right Princess. I can’t say I haven’t dreamed about you. I can’t say I’m not burning with desire to hold you.” DID I JUST SAY THAT?
“Then, why don’t you?” Matt stopped her before she could say anything more.
“Look princess, you have to understand, this prophecy just doesn’t sit well with me. This is bigger than the two of us. The planet, the colony, the Khad, right now my job is to protect the colony; it can’t be any other way. Please say you understand.”
“I hate you. How could you humiliate me like this?”
“You spoiled brat.” He walked a few steps backward. “If you can’t understand this maybe I need to tell you about your father.”
“You knew my father?”
“Captain Aurora was my idol. He’s the reason I became an astronaut. In a way, he’s the reason I’m here.” Matt saw he had her attention. “This is not about you. It’s about your father. It’s about the sacrifice he made for the colony and the brave men that gave their lives with him. What would he say about you carrying on like this? I know what he would say. Stop being selfish, that’s why I’m here.”
Jihan suddenly felt sick to her stomach. Matt was there because of the settlers, not just for her. He was there to free them from bondage. “I’m so sorry. How could I be so childish? How could I be so insensitive? Of cause, I understand. It’s just that I’ve been waiting for you all my life.”
“Standing here before me is a beautiful woman who has overcome impossible odds and based on the past few days who wouldn’t think the prophecy wasn’t true?” Jihan tried to talk but Matt stopped her. “Now just is not the time no matter how we looked at it.” “Listen to me Jihan, I’m not really sure what to make of all this. But I promise you when the crisis has passed we will have time.”
This time she stopped him “Shhh. You called me Jihan for the first time.” She wrapped her arms around him and Matt held her in his. “I’m not sure anymore either, but I am sure about this.” with that, she kissed him. It turned into a long passionate kiss. For Jihan it was a lifetime in coming.
Matt whirled and headed to the balcony. “This isn’t over, far from it. We’re just putting it on hold for now.” As he left he knew his words were more than just an act of contrition, or an expression of regret, they were a pretense of things to come.