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Aftermath

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Michael's heart was empty, her limbs heavy, when she eventually allowed herself a well-deserved moment of rest.

She laid on her bed, back stiff from having occupied the red angel suit for many hours, and was not even sure if she thought too much or not enough. Memories and emotions filled her overwhelmed mind, and yet she felt slow, unable to solve anything. Tired. In a gravity state of her own. Sadness and pain, as well as the sorrow of losing some of the people she loved the most, burdened her entire being and toned down the pleasure of succeeding in her mission. Their mission.

She rolled onto her side. Sleep would be hard to find, even though it was much needed, and she wondered for a second if she should go find Dr Pollard to get some help with it. She had just tried for the twentieth time to find a comfortable position when the door of her quarters opened and Tilly walked in.

Seeing their room in the dark, Tilly carefully closed the door and did not bother turning the lights on. Michael wondered if she should disclose her state, or pretend to be asleep to avoid conversations, because as much as she loved Tilly being chatty enough for two, she didn't have enough energy to engage in discussions at the moment.

She was used to the absence of light after laying in the dark for so long, and did not miss a second of Tilly carefully removing her dirty uniform, as swift and silent as her adorable clumsiness allowed her to. Michael could not contain a smile seeing her girlfriend's underwear. Only her favorite ensign could literally save the universe wearing panties decorated with pink paw prints. She had a magic of her own.

Tilly expertly removed her bra with a content sigh, without taking her t-shirt off, and left it on the floor before she carefully slid under the sheets to curl herself around Michael.

“Nighty night, Wonder Woman…”

There were just so many things to say about this sentence, it was wrong and inaccurate on so many levels and yet, Michael simply hummed in reply and crawled closer, wrapping her arms around Tilly.

She had wanted to avoid her girlfriend in favor of being alone but now that she could hold her, Michael had to admit her Sylvia was pure softness, a soothing presence like a balm over her anxious mind. Everything about Tilly was soft: her hair, her skin, her quiet breathing. Against her body Michael could feel her tender breasts, her tummy, her thighs, so pale and soft. Underneath the sweat she had broken during those last hectic shifts, Sylvia still smelled sweet from her favorite perfume, a fragrance that remembered Michael of sugar and candies.

The commander barely shifted and placed a hand on Tilly's bare hip, under the seam of her t-shirt, feeling imperceptible stretch marks under her fingers. Her existence, so kind and pure, made this whole mess slightly more bearable. As she gently squeezed the velvety flesh between her fingers, a flash of touching memories replayed in Michael's mind.

One day when she was young, Amanda gave her two candies from Earth, with a knowing smile. Two white marshmallows. She explained she got them at a reception and thought they would remind Michael of her homeworld. That was so typically Amanda, trying to preserve her daughter’s heritage and her own through chemically processed saccharin. Unexpectedly, Michael decided to put the sweets away and waited until Spock was home to share them with him, then made him discover the incommensurable pleasure of chewing on clouds and licking their sticky fingers not to waste a taste of sugar.

The memories brought tears to her eyes and Michael quickly wiped them, trying to remain silent. Sweet and pale, soft and squishy, Tilly was everything she always loved from her favorite candies… and so much more. A best friend, a girlfriend, a lover, a partner. Her everything.

“Nighty night, my marshmallow,” she managed to whisper in a strangled voice.

Tilly looked up from the pillow where she was dozing, eyes opening wide. “Uh? Wh-what was that about?”

“Nothing,” Michael lied before she kissed Tilly's lips, the most efficient way to avoid explaining herself.