A New Space Iteration

    Chris Canatsey as Clovis Toller


    Posts : 104
    Join date : 2011-05-31

    Chris Canatsey as Clovis Toller Empty Chris Canatsey as Clovis Toller

    Post  Admin on Sat Sep 24, 2011 2:07 pm

    He’d known Lani for seven years, and still couldn’t believe she was doing this. They’d done two shows together – the revival of The Boy Friend for three years and Ask The Peacock For My Brother’s Dust for four. The latter was a smash, the former a solid run off-Broadway. Over the seven years, he and Lani had grown closer and closer – he had been there when she’d had her breakdown five years ago. She’d been there when his husband, August, died of Zant’s Syndrome last summer.

    She was, at once, both a welcoming and deeply private person. She never talked about her past, but she loved to talk about her present and future. There was no question he was one of her best friends, which was why the news rather blindsided him.

    “Quitting?” He was nestled in her breakfast nook, clutching an oversized mug of coffee. “Just like that? You’re quitting the show?”

    “Sabbatical, Clovis,” she replied, at the stove working on some over-easy eggs for them both. It was a gorgeous Friday morning. She had enlisted him to help her scour some Christopher Street consignment shops for a mysterious project. Now, he knew why. “Two-year sabbatical.”

    “A sabbatical you’re planning to spend on a derelict space-jalopy,” he drawled. “Is this a publicity stunt? Is there something I’m missing?”

    “There’s something I’m missing,” she said, sliding the eggs onto a plate and moving to take them to the nook’s table, sliding into the bench across from him. She was swathed in a Chinese-silk robe of bright blue, her hair disheveled from sleep still. He liked her like this – as far as he knew, he was the only one to see her in such a state. In seven years, he’d never seen her date or have anyone spend the night in her flat. That fact had made things easier for him eight months ago. He’d spent nearly three weeks living with her while he grieved for August.

    “But, darling, why unearth some relic? Why not just take a cruise with Patholux? Or snag a sporty little yacht?” He helped himself to eggs and a serving of fruit. “This is going to demolish your savings. Buying and outfitting an entire Georgian-class ship.”

    “It had to be mine,” she explained, folding her arms on the table and leaning on them. “It had to be something I put time and care into. Just like the crew – it had to be…home. Family.”

    Clovis nodded, slightly. Lani had no family. No blood relations, as far as she knew. She’d often lamented that fact. Parents dead, no siblings. “You want to build a family,” he said gently.

    “And be a family to them,” she added. “They need it as much as I do. I went through so many candidates. I thought I was choosing them because they were the most qualified…and, really, they are. But they also have one thing in common: they’re all alone. Circumstance or fate or their own mistakes ostracized them from the world. They’re all by themselves, lonely. I know I shouldn’t assume or speak for others, but I really believe they need this as much as I do.”

    “You’re not alone, Lani,” Clovis said. But he understood.

    August had wasted away. He’d refused drugs and more conventional treatments, opting for holistic medicines. He and Clovis had fought bitterly about it, up to the end. They’d been married only six years, but Clovis had never loved anyone or anything to utterly as August. He felt cheated of a lifetime with his husband, of growing old with the person Fate had designed for him. He was furious that August refused to do everything possible to extend his life. There had been fights, riotous fights between them. And, suddenly, August slipped away in the night.

    They had gone to bed angry that night. The last thing Clovis had said to his husband was that August wanted to die so he could hurt Clovis.

    The next morning, August was gone. An aneurism in his brain.

    It was so strange how quickly the arguments dissolved into meaninglessness. How quickly he realized how ridiculous it’d been to fight. He couldn’t believe he’d wasted a single, precious second with August on something so pointless. That was worse that the shame of how they parted. He wanted to trade every harsh word for a kiss, every furious glare for a smile. All that time, squandered. He’d had so much time, and he’d pissed it away.

    Yes, he understood what it felt like to be alone, even among dear friends.

    “When do you leave?” he asked. “I want to get in plenty of décor shopping before then.”


    “What he HELL is that…thing in your dressing room?” Clovis asked, standing in the wings with Lani three months later.

    “That’s Hector, my SecOps on the ship,” she replied. She sounded very tired.

    “He’s positively Cro-Magnon.” Clovis shuddered. “I think I saw him picking his teeth with a puppy’s tailbone.”

    “He’s not that bad, Clo,” Lani chuckled wearily. “He’s just…simple. And prone to wanton acts of unspeakable violence.”

    “Please tell me he’s not performing those unspeakably violent acts in your bedroom.” Her look made him lift his hands in surrender. “Beg your pardon. I had to ask.”

    “We’re flying out tomorrow to meet with the captain, navigator and ship’s doctor to work on some outfittings on-board. Going to have dinner there.” She paused. “Do you want to come?”

    Clovis grinned slowly. “Yes. Yes, I do.”

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