‘Tis Charity to Show
“ I guess Hyacinth doesn’t have a taste for things sprouted from seeds and dirt,” said Rand, pulling out a bag of ready-made salad—or what passed for salad-- from one of the stasis carts.
Bacteria green paste flecked with spots of red, yellow and orange squeezed out of tubes was about as garden-fresh as one got on these off-ship missions. Rand and Riley were on lunch duty, and the tubed salads of dubious colors were always in abundance, as Rose found it fit to leave those untouched in favor of the more substantial, crunchy main courses. It was truly a testament to the power of texture on the tongue, because neither the main courses nor the salads had any taste to them, unless cardboard was to your liking. Out of all the food Rand had retrieved from Rose’s room, not one of them had fallen into the ‘leafy greens’ category.
Riley laughed at the smug remark while he gathered the main lunch packets from the carts and counted them out.
“We’re running out,” he said. “If she continues with this hoarding food shit we’ll be slurping down that green stuff for all our meals!”
“Oh, no! We can’t let that happen! Where is she anyway? In her room hoarding more of our food?”
“No, she’s working in the medical room with Begay. It seems Scotty’s been getting these dizzying spells or something.”
“Yeah, tell me about it. I’m been getting those myself. I can be walking down the hall, then it suddenly hits me. You’ve been getting any?”
“Who, me? No,” Riley said, shaking his head.
“Ha! Why am I not surprised.”
Indeed, Riley was so full of energy she was amazed he was able to focus on his task, he was so wired.
“Look, I’m going to take this wonderful window of opportunity and see if Rose hoarded any more food in that pig cave of hers. Be right back.”
When Rand reached Rose’s room, she noticed neatly stacked boxes of main course containers wedged squarely in the crevice where the walls literally met in the back corner by the window.
Rand couldn’t get over that sorry sight. Did Rose honestly think that packing the food so neatly would somehow make her hoard less noticeable? If she really wanted a more effective way to hide the stuff, why not simply shove the damn food down her throat! Maybe Rose would be doing everyone a favor if she choked on it!
Rand walked over to the corner, gathered what she could of the tall pile, and carried them back to the kitchen.
Riley laughed as she entered the kitchen with the last of the boxes a third trip later.
“Is that all of them?”
“Yeah, Thank God! Geez, when the hell does she find the time to steal all this stuff? Shit!”
“Who knows! Too bad there’s no locks on the cabinet doors.”
“Hey, they never had to worry about a Hyacinth Rose in their mist. If they did, there’d be locks on the cabinet and pantry doors for sure.”
Riley had found this last comment particularly amusing and fell into a whooping fit of guffaws, doubling over and clapping his hands wildly like a circus seal.
“Calm down, Kevin! It’s not that funny!” Rand watched Riley lose himself in his mirth, afraid he might gag on his saliva, he was laughing so hard. She could see that his acne was paired with pink gouged-out areas, spotted with fresh specks of blood.
“Have you seen Dr. Begay about your acne, Kevin? To be brutally honest, it’s not getting any better.”
Rand was very aware that she had blurted out the question without much thought, but she couldn’t help it. Riley stopped laughing suddenly and turned to Rand, clearly caught off guard.
“What? My what?”
Oh, come on Riley!
“Your acne! Have you seen Dr. Begay about it? What might be causing it?”
Riley reached for a shiny, gorged whitehead and thoughtlessly rolled it between his thumb and forefinger. Revolted, Rand watched while blood surrounded and swelled around the white puss pocket. Riley shrugged his shoulders, his eyes wide and innocent.
“It’s not so bad, is it?” he asked sheepishly.
Rand stood with her hands on her hips, feeling the muscles in her face forming into one of those expressions that said ‘you’re joking, right?’ She wanted to say something sarcastic so badly, but gave up on the idea.
“Never Mind,” she said, turning back to her lunch preparations.
“Hey guys! What’s shakin’?”
Rand and Riley were surprised to see Nurse Rose peeking through the server window.
“I thought you were in the medical room. How’s Scotty? And what are you doing here?”
Riley snickered at Rand’s line of impolite questioning. Rose, craning her neck to get a bird’s eye view of the two of them preparing the food, said:
“Well, I was in the lab, but now I’m done. Scotty seems ok after Mathias gave him a stimulant shot, so I came by to see if I could help out with lunch duty.” She spoke like someone checking off things on her To-Do List.
Rand and Riley suddenly shot glances at each other. Lunch duty?
“Hyacinth, you’re not on lunch duty.”
Oh, I know. I just thought that I could help out here.”
“Really. So you could stay close to the bounty, I suppose,” sneered Riley.
“I just came from your room and found boxes of lunch and dinner packets stacked up against the wall, lady!”
“Oh, I see! So you just waltz into other people’s rooms without their permission?!”
“Food was missing! And whenever food is missing, you’re usually the culprit. Mind you, this is food for the whole crew, and you hoard it all for yourself! Do you still think you have a right to privacy under those circumstances? Sorry, Toots! We really don’t need your help here!”
Rand slammed a few of the pre-packaged meals in front of Rose, in order to emphasize her point.
“Easy, Janice,” yelped Rose.
Rand gave her a dirty look. “Don’t easy me, girl! We know what you’re doing with this charitable shit!”
“Hey, I got this one, Janice,” said Riley, intervening. “Can you set up for coffee?”
Rand calmed down. “Yeah, sure.”
The two of them purposely ignored Rose as they continued working their lunch duty. Riley carried out the prepared meals and placed them on trays, while Rand reached overhead to open the cupboard right over the sink.
Something had fallen out of the cupboard and onto the floor. Rand looked down to see what it was.
The object was a plastic rod of some kind, black in color, with a rounded, tapered end and a grooved handle for easy gripping. It looked like one of those things used with blenders, to help push the food down to the blade for maximum efficiency. She picked it up and turned it over in her hands, running her fingers along its length.
“Hey, Janice! Did you start the coffee yet?”
“Can you hold your horses, Kevin dear? You’ll all get your coffee! Don’t worry!”
Rand placed the instrument on the rim of the sink and reached up to get the coffee filter.
“Gotta rinse this.”
She placed the ball of her hand under the single-knob faucet and pushed it up, bringing jolting images of Khobran pushing her thighs up and apart, thrusting himself inside her as he pressed her against the wall, their wet, hot naked bodies slamming violently together in orgasm.
It was the rushing sound of the water that brought her back to the present. She took a sharp, rasping breath and shot a look at Riley, who was behind the outside counter getting the trays and food together, ignoring Rose while she stood over him like a forlorn child being left out of a hide-and-seek game.
Rand placed her hands on her stomach and took slow, deliberate breaths to calm herself, but was suddenly aware of the glaring wetness between her legs, and the throbbing, aching clit that accompanied it.
Suddenly, Rand had an idea. “Hey, Hyacinth? Can you come over here and make the coffee for me? Something’s just came up!”
She made sure that her voice was at its utmost sweetest.
Rose and Riley looked at each other in amazement before Riley turned in Rand’s direction.
“What? What happened? You’re not feeling well or something?”
Rand smiled. She liked that answer.
“Yeah, that’s right! I think I’m getting dizzy again. Hyacinth, would you please , if you don’t mind. And you did say you wanted to help, right?”
Just get your fat ass over here and move it swiftly, sister!
Hesitant, Rose walked over to where Rand was.
“Well, here I am. At your service,” said Rose eagerly, scouting the area with her eyes.
Probably searching for more food to hoard.
“Oh, thank you so much! I really appreciate it.”
Rand smiled brightly, promptly took the black rod from the sink rim, and walked out.
“See you at lunch,” she called over her shoulder.