Radim did indeed find himself something to do during the day, firstly checking through Stana’s kitchen to see if she needed any supplies that he could pick up during the day, before heading out to wander the streets of Station Geraldine.
But once he had restocked Stana’s kitchen, he made a beeline for the rear of the station, to an area near where the shuttle-station airlock was built. Upon his arrival, he saw what he was hoping to, an area that, to accommodate shuttle entry, had no tall buildings they could collide with, and instead had a long flat surface between the shuttle loading docks. Offering a faint smile to himself that he had found what he wanted, he turned and made his way back to Stana’s house.
Radim was busy preparing food in her kitchen when Stana arrived home that evening, she looked at him with a look of mild shock to see him cooking, but the heaviness of her tired eyes quickly returned to replace it.
Radim looked up at her, just in time to see her all but collapse from exhaustion onto her sofa. “I’d ask if it was a good meeting.” He called out. “But it either took you all forever to reach a conclusion about how to proceed, or there were a shit-ton of small details to finalise.”
Stana slowly turned to look at him, first her head, then followed slowly and lazily by the rest of her body, all while not moving from the sofa. “Both.” She sighed.
Radim tilted his head. “Even worse than I thought. Anyway as you can see I made dinner.” He gestured towards the food in front of himself, even though by this point Stana had already rolled back the other way and could no longer see him. “I thought we could maybe take it out with us on a stroll.”
“I don’t want to move.” Stana mumbled. “They fed me in the meeting, now I just want to sleep for a week.”
Radim raised an eyebrow at the food he was preparing. “Well double portions for me I suppose.” He laughed to himself. “I don’t think I ever realised how tiring those meetings could be, we can go out tomorrow instead.”
He glanced back over at the sofa again, but no response came his way.
“Stana?” He called out. Again receiving no response, he made his way over to her, only to see her sprawled out, heavily breathing and asleep. He shook his head with a smile. “Tomorrow it is then.”
It was gone midday the next day when Stana woke up, where she found herself in her bed, still wearing her work clothes from the day before. Ruffling up the covers she made her way out the bed and headed towards her sitting room, where she saw Radim sitting watching the television.
“You put me to bed in my work clothes? You didn’t think to change me?”
“I did consider it.” Radim peered over his shoulder back at her. “But I figured you might have felt a bit strange had I undressed you.”
Stana shrugged. “I did it to you literally just yesterday.”
“I know, and I felt strange as a result.” He turned his attention back away from her again.
Stana frowned. “Well now my work clothes are all crumpled.”
Radim turned his attention back to her. “Well you sure are a little bundle of happiness today aren’t you?”
Stana walked quickly up behind him and gently slapped the back of his head. “Oh shush, I’ll be happier once I’ve eaten.”
As if on cue, Radim leapt to his feet, switched off the television and turned to face her. “I’m so glad you mentioned it. You probably don’t remember my mentioning it last night, but I had thought we could go out for the evening.” He paused, grinning. “But seeing as you ruined that, we can go now instead.”
Stana raised an eyebrow. “Alright? Where do you want to go?”
Radim was already heading to the kitchen by this point. “All planned out, don’t you worry.”
The spot Radim had picked out was the clear land he had seen the previous day, where, due to shuttle landings nearby, the land was flat and grass coated, and due to the large airlocks, gave a clear view of the empty space behind the stations.
With the blanket laid out on the grass, Radim and Stana sat eating the food he had prepared, watching the stars seemingly twirl in the distance.
“Night time in the middle of the day.” Stana laughed, taking another sip of her drink. “How adorably unconventional.”
Radim rolled his eyes. “It was going to be night time at night originally but your meeting overran.” He smiled and winked at her. “So it would have been boringly conventional, so this is better.”
Stana smiled and kissed him gently on the cheek. “You raise a good point there Radim.” She shifted back to resting position and gazed back at the dancing stars. “So to what do I owe this?”
Radim shifted his weight so he was looking at her, despite her not returning the gesture. “I was thinking about what you said, about because I’m from Nimura I don’t understand the situation of stations such as Geraldine.”
Now she returned his gaze. “Radim I didn’t mean anything by that and you know it, you don’t understand the troubles of Geraldine much in the same way I could never appreciate the hardships of Nimura.”
Radim nodded. “I know but it made me think.” He paused and looked at her closely. “I was thinking what if we lived together?”
Stana’s eyes widened rapidly. “What.”
“I’m not saying right now.” Radim quickly found himself adding. “Just something we could consider, I could move here or we could both move to another station, I doubt you would want to live on Nimura.”
“Radim that’s a big step.” Stana just about managed to stutter her words out.
“I know, but we’ve been together nearly three years.” He turned his gaze back to space again. “I don’t mean we should do so soon of course, just something to maybe think about.”
Stana let out a heavy sigh as she turned her attention back out the void of space. “Radim, we both have fairly busy jobs, would it even work for us practically?”
“It works for us now doesn’t it?”
Stana paused for what felt like an eternity to Radim, before slowly turning to look at him. “Okay.” She nodded. “Let’s do it, you can come over here and still commute for when Lady Mitch needs you.”
Radim looked at her closely. “Are you sure? We don’t have to decide right now.”
Stana smiled. “Yes, surprising myself here, yes I am.”
Radim couldn’t help but beam back at her as he quickly moved in for a hug. “This is fantastic.” They held onto each other for a few moments. “I suppose the big question now.” He spoke up again, without letting go of her. “Is a matter of when?”
At more or less the same moment that Stana and Radim were making future arrangements, back on Station Nimura Lady Mitch was busy resting in her house. Book in hand she rested in her reading chair, which faced her pseudo-fireplace. One of her hand-servants had just rested a tray of tea on the table next to her, when the screen above the fireplace lit up. “Incoming call from Madam Night of Dunnwood station.” An automated voice rang out.
Lady Mitch looked up from her book in mild surprise, before looking at the two servants in the room. “Close the door and stand behind my chair.” The two nodded and did as she had instructed. When they were in position behind her, Lady Mitch slowly closed her book, placed it next to the tray on her table, picked up the cup and saucer off of the tray, and sat back in her chair. “Accept the call.”
The image on the screen changed almost immediately to that of Madam Night, she was seated at the desk in her study, papers neatly composed in front of her. She was dressed informally, much in the same way Lady Mitch was, but had a look of visible disappointment on her face. “Lady Mitch.” She spoke softly.
“Madam Night.” Lady Mitch responded in a similar tone. “To what do I owe this unexpected call?”
“I have just received a call from Sir Arjes, he spoke to Lord Cammeo yesterday after looking into the protocols around Station Scorpion as he said he would. As a result of the conversation they had, Lord Abultrates has called an emergency meeting, tomorrow, at midday, and has tasked me with informing the other Committee members.”
Lady Mitch leant forwards and gently placed her cup and saucer back on the tray. “I had not been anticipating such a fast response to the discussion.”
Madam Night shook her head. “Neither had I. It would seem what we said to Sir Arjes and Sir Fisiio has caused a stir.”
Lady Mitch nodded. “We already knew that Sir Arjes cannot be trusted, but what of Sir Fisiio? He seems to think similarly to ourselves.”
Madam Night shook her head. “I do not know, he appears to be very much against the committee members meeting each other outside of the weekly meetings, but that unfortunately means he will not speak to me on my own either.” She moved one of the papers in front of herself. “In the meantime I hold doubts as to fully placing my trust in him.”
Lady Mitch nodded gently. “I have no doubt in my mind that you are correct.” She paused briefly. “We shall just have to see how this meeting plays out. I need to contact my pilot, I have given him time off after the last meeting which I will now have to revoke. Contact me again if you hear of any changes.”
Madam Night shook her head slowly. “You are not my superior, so do not give me orders. But I will do as you ask.” With which she signed off.
Lady Mitch snarled slightly at the blank screen, before turning to her two handservants. “You may leave me now.”
The two nodded and complied, leaving her alone in the room.
Lady Mitch once again composed herself and looked at the monitor, at which she spoke three clear words. “Call Radim Spurling.”