“I never came onto your daughter - to Judy.”
John Robinson gave the mechanic a steady stare.
“I mean, she’s beautiful and all. And if things were different...”
“Let me stop you right there.” John shifted to face Don West as the younger man looked everywhere but in John’s direction. He wasn’t used to seeing Don flustered; cocky, sneaky and confident, sure. But flustered? Never. He decided he liked Don this way - he was cute even.
“So what has this got to do with you wishing you had a father like me?”
Don shrugged as much as he could in his spacesuit. “I was thinking, if you... I mean if you ever wanted a boy.”
“I already have a son. Besides, I heard you wanted to be a girl anyway.”
“A badass princess.”
Don threw up his hands in frustration, before quickly moving to grip on to a piece of wreckage once more. “She told you?” Don sighed to himself. Of course Judy had told her father about the whole princess mix-up.
John placed a hand on Don’s shoulder. “I can always do with another boy. I’m feeling kind of outnumbered at home. I guess you’d even things out if you joined us.”
Don scrunched up his face. “Stop messing with me.”
“Who’s messing?” John gave Don a little punch. “I’ll be your Daddy if you want.”
“Okay, old man. No need to get fruity with me.”
“Yeah, fruity, queer, gay.” Don waved his hand around.
“I know what it means. I wasn’t born yesterday. This old man could show you a few things.”
Don gave him an appraising look. “Didn’t know you were into that.”
“I was in the army, Don. You take your comfort where you can find it.”
Don turned away. A billion dots of light reflected on his spacesuit’s visor - sparkling all around him. He felt suddenly small, and not in a good way.
“You wouldn’t be a convenience thing for me,” John continued. “I’d treat you right, before, during and afterwards.
“I don’t joke about power exchanges. If you wanna be my special boy or a little princess, I’ll still be your Daddy.”
Don wanted to blame the low level of air in his suit for the way he became suddenly lightheaded.
“Think about it, okay?” John’s voice was gentle but firm. “When you make a decision, come find me. You know where I live.”
Both men looked at each other and then began laughing.
“Yeah I know where you live - right here on this piece of space garbage.”
“Well I always wanted to move out of the city, and you can’t beat the view.”
Don wished he could wipe away the tears of laughter that escaped his newly-healed eyes.
“Listen,” John continued. “I’m serious here. And Maureen knows I need this sometimes, so you don’t have to worry about causing trouble for her.”
John nodded his head, even though the movement was partially hidden by his suit’s helmet.
“Okay then,” Don said with a soft voice.
“No. I mean, okay. Yes okay.” Don’s voice was so timid, John could barely hear it over the suit’s audio receiver. “I want a Daddy. I want you to be my Daddy. I’ll be a good boy for you.”
John raised an eyebrow. “How would you be a good boy for me?” John knew it wasn’t fair, but he was intrigued with what Don had in mind, and why he’d been so quick to accept his offer. Don was very nice to look at, and his constant swagger and cocky attitude were definite bonus points too, but this was very sudden.
“I’d bring you tea and soothe you after a hard day,” Don began. “I’d sit at your feet, rub your toes and make you feel special.”
John’s mouth widened with shock. This was certainly not what he had expected to hear from the mechanic. “Who knew what a softie you could be,” John whispered.
“Ah, now you’re making fun of me.”
John gripped Don’s arm, wobbling a little as his hold on the wreckage slipped. Don grabbed on to the other man pressing him back to relative safety.
“I’m not making fun. I’m just a little surprised. Makes me think that you’ve done this kind of thing before.”
“Yeah, couple of times. Once when I first ran away from my folks, and once just before I left Earth this last time. Guy I was with told me it could only be a short term thing. He knew I was off-world all the time, it wasn’t sustainable, you know?”
“I have some experience of that, yes.” John’s voice was low and thoughtful.
“I suppose part of me was always searching for family - a father figure who wanted and appreciated what I’ve got to offer. But that’s not all of it. I don’t want a replacement. I just want a Daddy.” Don’s voice trailed off at the end.
The two men lapsed into silence for a while - the weight of Don’s words filling up the cosmos between them. The vacuum of space was cold and brilliant - a sense of a new way of life opening up for both men.
“So when are we going to talk about sex,” John ventured.
Don held back a laugh. “I was wondering when you’d bring that up.”
“Like I’m the only person with a hard on right now,” John countered.
This time Don let himself chuckle. “I like to give, you know? I hate not feeling useful and I’m inclined to service.”
“That’s good to know.” John regarded the younger man for a moment. “I’m not a demanding man. I like being a caring Daddy, but I know not everyone is into sex.”
“I thought everyone liked sex,” Don said screwing up his face in confusion.
“No, not everyone. I knew a guy - Wilson. He joined up the same time I did. He was asexual, and he was a good friend too. I lost him in the first wave of active duty.”
“You miss him.” It wasn’t a question.
“Of course I do. He opened my eyes to so many things, like how to be a Daddy without any sexual input. He told me how folks are searching for alien life and undiscovered ways to live, but how we ignore all the diversity on Earth. We close our eyes to people who are different, who aren’t alien but they may as well be for how we ignore them or turn them into fetish objects. Wilson taught me about people who were gender queer, aromantic, demisexual, polyamorous. I miss him like he just died yesterday. It’s been years now.” John looked down. “You would have liked him.”
“Hey,” Don replied. “At least you can pass on all the things you learned to me now.”
John smiled. “Yeah. I’ll teach my boy everything I know.” He grinned even wider. “As soon as they find us, I’ll start the lessons.”
Don bit his lip. “I thought we could start with me on my knees, giving you a blow job.”
John jerked back a little. “We are going to have so much fun, you and I.”
Don turned away as he spotted a small grey dot approaching them. “Thanks, Daddy. Time to get rescued.”