[encryption disallowed, QEC will be plain text, continue?] Y

[Retinal authorization of plain text transmission from 
PO3 Chris Brazinsky]

My Dearest Simone,

The captain engaged stealth mode. I think it's an exercise. Well, I
hope it's an exercise. Because it's tearing me apart.

Stealth mode means I can't see the stars. I had you memorized. I
knew exactly where you were. I even learned to use that stupid
computer that tracks your route, so I could see you. I would run
down to section three, weave my way through the degenerates hanging
around the nitrous leak and press my nose against the porthole. I'd
breathe a fog against the glass, find your star amongst all the
stars, and stare at where you must be. But I can't now.

One week ago, before the stealth mode exercise started, I swear I
saw a glint of distortion on the edge of the pleiades. A speck, a
gnat. I knew it was you, hiding deep inside the bowls of the
Basilica. You were probably lounging about, reading that same
magazine you've been working thin for the last year. And chewing on
a split of your hair, right? Spiting it out, putting a fresh strand
in, over and over as you flipped through the pages. Was it you out

BTW I'm going to get in big trouble sending this over the QEC. But
I don't care I miss you. What are they going to do? Space me? And
eat nutrition cubes for the rest of their lives, because they'll
never learn to cook for themselves.

I hope your new assignment is as glorious as it sounded when you
broke the news to me, up there in the cupola. When you hopped up
and down all smiles. At the time, the Tojiro was harvesting energy,
so you had that white hot sun positioned behind you, playing merry
with your silhouette. I poured all my happiness into you that day.
I hope you can still feel it near you now.

Maybe we could schedule a cryo together, you know? Not right now of
course but sometime. You could do the calculations because I'm
terrible at it. I certainly wouldn't want to wake up after you're a
hundred years dead!

But we could do it. Meet up in the far future like we did on Senza
Tempo, where we re-enacted that old picture of your ancestors
standing on the rings of Saturn. They looked so very happy, acting
like the kind of carefree fools that only pure love can create.

Remember Senza Tempo? We bent ourselves into that same goofy “ape”
pose beneath ice rings that seemed to stretch forever. And after
the camera drone flashed its light, I could feel the joy from your
ancestors like lightning across time. "Here," they seemed to say.
"Carry our torch. Never let it die."

I bet the Basilica is totally in love with you right now. They
fawned all over you the moment our two ships touched. They rushed
at you like groupies from the docking port, and I couldn't stop
myself from smiling. I hid myself in the shadows, so I could freely
stretch my smile ear-to-ear and watch you attend to the adoring
fans huddled about you. And boy, they pecked at you so bad, asking
you a zillion convoluted questions with such eagerness they must
have thought you were Altessa herself!

You make me so proud. Of course, I didn't have anything to do with
it. But I’ll take the pride anyway, tuck it in my shirt pocket.
Hold it fast to my heart. I don't deserve it but I want to keep it,
so I will. It's my lump of gold.

I have to go, the grunts are getting hungry.

Go be brilliant. Not because I tell you, but because it's who you

Also, think about the cryo thing, it's okay if you don't wanna.

with love,

yer Pulsar