Wrote a up prologue to The Visitors
, which I want to try and finish before beating my head against a potential For Your Safety
“You know, vacations are usually for relaxation,” Melanie observed dryly. Rolas’ wife was dressed in Commoner culottes and a crop top shirt, sitting in half-lotus atop a workbench in the car barn, one leg dangling idly over the edge. The wooden barn held a small steam tender Rolas had been puttering over for the past week, the large doors propped open to let a breeze into the un-air conditioned space.
Rolas was finishing lowering a superheater tube into the boiler of the small, colorfully painted narrow-gauge steam engine, his shirt off, dressed only in his shorts and a pair of heavy leather foot protectors to save his toes from being sliced off by errant bits of iron.
“This is relaxing,” he said, biceps straining under his brown pelt, paws holding on tight to the chain running through the block and tackle. He lowered the tube down the last few centimeters into its waiting slot, and then secured the loose end of the chain to a bolt set in a nearby pillar.
“It’d be more relaxing if you used a proper tractor-pressor unit to save you from all of that work,” she pointed out.
“I’m trying to use original materials and techniques while I restore this,” he replied proudly, slipping the foot protectors off and setting them on the workbench.
“The original Mr. Puff is sitting in a museum back in town. The one you’re working on is a replica that was built two hundred years ago using modern techniques,” Melanie said, hopping off the bench and pressing up against him. Rolas smelled very male
today, sweating from the work and summer’s heat, with a perfume of machine oil.
“Principle’s the same,” he replied, voice a bit muffled as he nuzzled her neck. She let out a pleased purr, her tail waving happily as he pushed her back against the workbench, feeling his paw reach under her shirt to stroke her back. Yes, with just the two of them here, without even servants at this small country estate in the deep woods, well away from the nearest town, this was the most privacy they’d had since their children had gone to visit their aunts on Greenholme.
Less engineering, more sex,” Melanie advised, nibbling his ear tip.
Rolas snorted a laugh into her pelt. “Not even advanced hydraulics?”
“Well that I could get into…”( We interrupt this scene for a bit of family history. )