A FanFic SF Story by jespah
She is not my daughter.
The thoughts came, unbidden, as Saddik attempted to meditate.
Eriecho is not mine. There is no blood relation. We could, at Pon Farr ....
He banished the thoughts from his mind, but it was difficult to concentrate. It was never easy to concentrate at Canamar.
He thought back to when he had first come to Canamar Prison – when they both had, actually. Their ship had gone to Keto-Enol, to do trading with Enolians in preparation for a survey run. And nothing more, it was not like they were sightseeing or anything. But the Enolians had mistaken them for thieves. There had been no trial, just a talk with a biased Judicial Administrator. And the Administrator had sentenced them all to Canamar. T'Kef had been with child, and she went into labor while on the prison transport.
He had delivered the infant even though he had no medical training whatsoever. The other prisoners on the transport had hooted and hollered, getting a free show of female Vulcan genitalia as T'Kef screamed, for there were no medicines. T'Kef had not survived much longer than that, a victim of untreated massive blood loss. It seemed that her daughter could not possibly live. Saddik knew it was not logical for the child to go on.
But at Canamar there was one female prisoner, a Suliban named H'Shema. She was an angry thing, prickly and understandably concerned about preventing violations to her person. When she first saw Saddik, she had threatened him with a metal shank. But then she had seen the infant, and her demeanor had softened. She had come voluntarily, once she had heard there was an infant. It did not matter that the infant was not Sul.
Saddik had needed her. She could not nurse the infant – she was far from her childbearing years – but H'Shema was resourceful, and was able to get powdered milk and the semblance of swaddling and Saddik never asked her how she got it. He was just grateful – an emotion, to be sure, but a thoroughly appropriate one – whenever she did so.
He even allowed her to name the infant. He had not been T'Kef's husband, and that man, Sterrik, had, too, died on the Enolian transport, fighting to save his wife and deliver his own child. So H'Shema had named the infant – Eriecho.
The name meant nothing, so far as Saddik knew. It was just a pleasing sound for H'Shema, a bit of euphony amidst the harshness of Canamar existence. The three of them had, somewhat, lived together, a semblance of a family in that terrible prison realm. It had been over thirty years. He was eighty-seven. Eriecho was thirty-one, beginning to come into her own as, almost, an adult. And H'Shema was gone, and had been so for four years.
And so he had no one for Pon Farr this time around, which he knew would be happening fairly soon. H'Shema had been a poor substitute for a Vulcan woman, but she had tried. He had not loved her, and she had not loved him, but he was grateful – there, that word again – that she was willing enough to help him out with Pon Farr, and on more than one occasion.
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Tevun-Krus #49 - Best of 2K17Science Fiction
Well, we here at Tevun-Krus have been doin' this sort of thing since 2014. What is "this sort of thing"? Best-Of issues, of course! And 2K17 is no different-- That's a lie! Best of 2K17 is different, in that this time we wanted* to bring you 38 bran...