Reda and Starboy - True Colors

Starboy hesitated, his fingertips nearly brushing the door controls. Reda had summoned him to his quarters dozens of times, but something felt different this time. An uneasiness had crept into the back of Starboy’s mind during the conversation; he couldn’t pinpoint exactly what had shifted in Reda’s tone and mannerisms. He centered himself and firmly pressed the controls. After all, he knew there were consequences for keeping Reda waiting.


The door to his quarters opened with a mechanical whirr, Starboy standing before him. The young man’s slender form was covered by a robe just sheer enough to tell he was naked underneath. 

“How may I serve you today?” Starboy signed, his excitement showing in the nearly imperceptible shaking of his hands. 

Reda smiled at his enthusiasm. He began by moving his forearms down twice, his hands in a Y gesture, “Today I would like something special. I want to see all of you.” Without hesitation, Starboy let his robe fall to the ground and slowly turned in a circle.

“You can see as much of me as you like any day,” Starboy stepped forward and caressed his chest. 

Reda shook his head. “I meant that I would like to see you as you truly are. Your natural state.” 

“What do you mean?” Starboy’s brow furrowed as he took a half step back. Feigned ignorance. Starboy truly was a wonderful actor, but Reda knew him well enough by now to have noticed his tells. The nervous fidgeting of his left thumb and forefinger were a sure sign that his suspicions were correct. 

“I know that you aren’t like the rest of the crew, that you can change your appearance at will,” Reda paused to squeeze Starboy’s hand, calming it, “I would like to see the true form of my cherished friend and lover.”

For a moment, Starboy’s eyes swam in nervous indecision. He closed them tightly and let out a deep breath. “Anything for you, my darling.” His hands begun to unfold as his body expanded into the space between them. Colorful shapes and rich fractals spiraling into infinity spilled from where Starboy had been standing. Reda’s mind reeled as he struggled to comprehend how such a massive entity could be contained by the modest room. A headache pounded in his skull and he pushed the thoughts back; best to avoid that paradox, then.

At once, Starboy stood in front of him again. Reda forced his grimace into a smile to placate Starboy’s worry; this was nothing he couldn’t handle. Once again, Starboy expanded. 

Reda reached for Starboy and felt himself disperse as the alien mass enveloped him. It was a bizarre sensation; he was at once both separate and whole as his body was released from its physical shackles. He began to explore his new reality but was soon met with bursts of sharp reds and yellows from Starboy: Be careful not to drift too far.

Reda somehow knew the meaning of the shifting colors and shapes as if they were second nature. Something slithered inside of him, probing and massaging areas he was previously unaware of. A shudder of pleasure sent ripples of blues and greens through his own form. He strummed at a cluster of pale spheres, which danced like fireflies in response. 

Warmth and joy spread through Reda like a small flame, snaking their way into his deepest regions. Metallic pinks and purples pulsed rhythmically with their movement. Sparks of yellows flared into existence and vanished just as quickly. Time ceased to exist within the room. He and Starboy mixed and intertwined, a veritable aurora of ecstasy. Light spilled around them in green and golden drops which fizzled and sputtered where they landed. 

He and Starboy sliced through each other. What was this feeling? Pleasure? Pain? He craved more. A burning sensation in the core of his being seared outward, only to be quelled by the crashing waves of Starboy against him. They crescendoed in a dazzling display of light and color, an exploding sun that push the boundaries of Reda’s cognition. Then, suddenly, it was black.

Slowly, color began to return. Pale shapes ebbed and flowed at the edges of Reda’s mind. He opened his eyes to find himself in bed, Starboy curled into his side. How much of what had happened was reality, and how much had he imagined? He could only be sure by trying again.

Reda looked down at Starboy’s sleeping form, stroking his light hair. There would be time for that later. He pulled Starboy close and drifted into a deep sleep. 


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