“I could tell him to leave. He would be safer elsewhere.” Chel admitted.
“You are over thinking this, Chel,” Sirius stated sympathetically. He leaned down into Chel’s face, nudging her gently.
“Lexx loves you. You love Lexx.” Serenity added tilting her head sideways. “It’s okay to be upset for a little while, but nothing has happened and nothing may happen.”
“Serenity is right,” stated Sirius with a toothy smile. “Enjoy now, because it is all you are certain to have and if you fill it with tears, that’s all you will remember.”
“It was just the thought of them taking Lexx away when he doesn’t want to go.” Chel leaned her head against her right hand. “I feel so helpless.”
It wasn’t right. Lexx should be able to choose what he wanted to do with his own life. Chel wanted that for him more than anything. He deserved a choice.
Sirius and Serenity smiled at each other, bobbed their heads, then turned back to Chel, eager to give her encouragement.
“There’s always someone deciding things for us.” Sirius began. “We’re considered lower life forms, unable to make decisions for ourselves, but we do. We decide to listen and obey, … or not.”
“Someone can make a decision for Lexx,” chuckled Serenity. “But that doesn’t mean he has to let it happen.” Chel stared at them. What they had said made a lot of sense. Yes, others could plot things behind Lexx’s back, but they couldn’t force him to go along with it unless he wanted to. She couldn’t help but feel that Lexx would have something to say about it and would get further than she would in the actual event.
“You’re right, Sirius.” Chel felt a little better. “I need to tell Lexx what they’re planning. They didn’t want to discuss it with them, but this is important.” Chel stood up, sliding her hands under both Sirius and Serenity’s heads in an affectionate gesture. “Thank you.”
Chel took a moment to gather herself, running her fingers through the two large dice’s fur. Together, the three of them left the balcony to look for Lexx.
Chel ran into her parents first and explained the situation to them. They listened but didn’t have anything to offer other than what Chel had already decided. She needed to tell Lexx.
Meanwhile, Keith was stuck in a room being interrogated by Chill. The ice girl was enthusiastic and made Keith uncomfortable with her lack of personal space. Her fingertips could freeze skin on contact. Her close presence was like standing in front of an open freezer.
She wasn’t unpleasant, just so spontaneous that Keith doubted her control. He was worried she might touch him and give him freezer burn.
Riley was surprised to find Lexx actually asleep in the grass. He frowned for a moment, realizing that Lexx was tired and vulnerable. It wasn’t like him to be so relaxed. A mental nudge across the relay was enough to confirm that Lexx was deep asleep. The smile plastered across Lexx’s face kept Riley from probing into what he was dreaming about. He didn’t want to end up wandering into something sensitive to Lexx. Riley did have boundaries.
“Hey, Lexx, time to wake up.” Riley settled into the grass nearby, his back to Lexx. “Calling the match in your favor in a few minutes.” He kicked Lexx across the Relay enough to wake him up. Lexx’s eyelids fluttered and he blinked in the bright sunlight filtering through the leaves above.
“Come on.” Riley encouraged. “Almost break time. I’m sure Chel is going to be looking for you.” Lexx’s eyes snapped open at Chel’s name.
“I don’t want to waste a moment.” Lexx bolted upright and onto his feet, wings fluttering behind him. They were a little stiff from being laid on.
“I don’t blame you.” Riley grinned at Lexx over his shoulder.
Lexx flexed his wings, stretching them out, then back. Riley rose to his feet, reaching out over the relay.
“Did you actually sleep?” Riley teased. “You didn’t spend that time with Chel.”
“I had a lot of things to think about,” Lexx replied over the relay with a smile. “Then I fell asleep.”
“You know these matches are random and we don’t know who you’re going up against next,” Riley stated.
“I know. It could get bad.”
Lexx stood in the grass next to Riley, looking out over the sea. It was hard to believe he was fighting for his life in such a paradise. The long grass rustled around his wingtips and the sea continued its rhythmic passing over the sandy beach below.
Lexx had a sense of where Chel was and opened a door nearby. He walked quickly in her direction, every step filling him with growing excitement.
That excitement was dimmed the moment he saw Chel sitting on a couch between her mother and father. He stopped in the doorway, steeling himself for whatever was going on. Chel didn’t look or feel happy and both of her parents looked concerned.
Chel looked up and smiled, clearly happy to see him. Lexx could feel his legs weaken. His resolve to not give in to his emotions wavered, but he controlled himself. He didn’t want to do anything that would upset Chel’s father. Her mother wasn’t a concern.
“One more done.” Lexx smiled, keeping his distance for the moment. “I need a moment alone to discuss something with Chel.” Lexx’s voice trembled as he pushed the request out. He had more on his mind than discussion but felt that for now, he should restrain himself.
Mel gave Chel an affectionate pat on the knee and got up to leave. Victor was slower in moving, weighing how far he wanted to push things. Mel kicked him in the leg and gave him a dirty look. Reluctantly, Victor got up and slowly stalked past Lexx with Mel right behind him.
“We’ll be in the next room, Chel.” Victor stared directly into Lexx’s eyes as he walked past. Lexx met his gaze for a moment, long enough to make it be known that he wasn’t going to be intimidated. He wasn’t trying to be defiant.
“I need to tell you something important too,” Chel spoke up, giving Lexx the excuse he needed to quickly look away.
Vic dragged his feet for a moment, then Mel gave him a firm shove from behind to make him walk. He grumbled and left the room with his wife. That boy needed help, but he was dangerous at the same time.
Lexx joined Chel on the couch. She scooted over to one side, giving him room to sit and not have to cram his wings into her. Lexx leaned back and smiled at Chel. She smiled back, inching closer to him. For the moment, neither of them were thinking about what it was they needed to say, just that they were together and alone. Mostly.