Moonlight and More

The first week passed the trio by in a pleasurable haze. Carmen had arranged a beach front villa and handed Jack four place Trumps of the other large cities in the Shadow, and the villa. She rather suspected he would rather find his own sightseeing then go looking at rock, which was what Remington wanted to do at least part of the time. Turned loose among the stone masons and sculptors, the Begman was enjoying his days almost as much as his nights. He also discovered just why Carmen had smirked when he first donned the Atlantean clothes they had arrived in; he was a very popular boy — and not just with the woman. After the first time he found himself on the receiving end of male advances, he kept Carmen close at hand. He didn't have a problem with that lifestyle, as long as it was someone else's.

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Jack had managed to find the time to play one of Carmen's songs; It was called 'Cream', though Jack sometimes referred to it as 'The Lazy Anagram Song'. He had managed to collect a group of musicians to duplicate the music, and had sang the nearly falsetto lyrics himself. He was masterful when performing, all the languid laziness gone, and his blue eyes burned with an energy that seemed bottomless. One night, Jack had arranged a drum display, using local instruments, and in front of dazzled musicians and Temple goers, had manged to play several different kinds of drums and percussion instruments all at once. He could not sing and play, but he did not have to. Needless to say, Jack was terribly popular with the musicians, and lovers of music — which was nearly everyone they met.

It was an evening early in their second week with all of them sporting healthy tans with nary a tan line in sight. Not a big achievement for Jack, but Carmen and Remington were golden the old fashioned way. Dinner was a glorious fish baked in palm leaves and seasoned with the local herbs and a tangy fruit, served alongside the native equivalent of rice and roasted root vegetables. They had all found another local wine that they swore to keep stocked at The Garden, along with that vintage from their first night. Remington was enjoying the pleasurable state of being satiated and slightly buzzed while he played a hand through Carmen's hair and enjoying the view of the moonrise over the turquoise waters from their front porch dining area. He took a sip of the pale blue wine and shifted his eyes over to Jack.

"So," he said casually. "Carmen tells me you have a sister…" Beside him, Carmen smirked faintly at the suggestiveness in that simple statement. He had come a long way in ten days.

Jack lounged nearby almost upside down, sprawled across the cushion. His legs were where his back should have been, and his head lolled off one edge. He had been relaxed by the events leading up to the moonrise, though their house guests had departed, as well as made boneless by copious amounts of wine. His blue eyes swiveled to Remington, "Yep. I don't know if you'd like her. She's gorgeous, blonde, eyes like the sea with gray clouds. Legs from here to there. You know, none of the things red blooded men find attractive in a woman." Jack grinned, "Great, great voice. But don't you tell her I said that."

Remington ribbed his chin thoughtfully then looked at Carmen. "I don't know. Sounds iffy."

"Ridiculous man," Carmen smiled fondly and leaned over over a quick kiss. Remington chuckled as he broke off a grape from the cluster near at hand. They were a deep purple, sweet, with a faint shimmer to them that Adonia had explained was the magic that infused everything in Atlantis. They had an almost alcohol effect on a person. Carmen had to watch how many he ate after he managed to eat enough once to lose all his inhibitions. Fortunately they had been at the Villa that night alone. It had been a very interesting evening.

But he wasn't planning on eating this one. He waited for just the right moment and tossed it at Jack. Carmen felt like the den mother of a frat house at times.

Jack caught the grape and ate it like nothing untoward had happened, sighing as the juice and the effect spread across his tongue. He shivered a bit, then laughed and grinned at Carmen's expression. "We could always give her a call, those other two songs would be easier with her here. Three if you count the one we wrote because of that conga drum." He looked to Carmen, "What do you think, Angel? I don't have the means, so I s'pose that is up to you. I'd like to borrow you for a bit, to show you something, and I'm certain Rem and Kaylee will need time to get acquainted. There's always Adonia and her friends." Jack stretched like a cat, groaning slightly, and sighed when he was done.

Remington snorted into his glass. He was 'borrowing' Carmen on a regular basis already. Said woman smirked and nudged him before draping herself over his lap.

"This time is different. I've surprises." Jack smiled bemusedly, and with a sigh, finally rolled up and to his feet. "I was so comfortable."

"Call her if you like; my deck's in the table beside the bed on Remington's side. Tell her to bring an acoustic guitar. The instrument makers will want a look and then the musicians will all be in love."

"I'll call and see who she's doing." Jack chuckled, and went into the villa.


He found the Trump Deck and looked for Kaylee's, once he saw her familiar face, he stood on the balcony overlooking the gardens and made the call. "Oh, Kaylee…" He looked and realized he wasn't wearing anything, and then shrugged. "Calling all Planets of the Solar Federation…"

"Hey, bro," Kaylee answered almost immediately. She was walking down through the city somewhere, in bright afternoon sun - and in those painted-on jeans she liked so much, with a low-cut tank top, sunglasses, and tennis shoes. A guitar case was slung over her left shoulder. There was an instant's pause; then her eyes rolled skyward, and she said, "Oh, Fortune's tits, Jack - PANTS!"

Jack snapped his fingers, "Right! Pants. I knew I was forgetting something." He looked around, and then, "Stop looking at my junk you perv!" He eyed her, and coughed, "So its still cold there I see." He grinned, "And you're even carryin' an axe. You have to come here. Sun, sand, mens, wimmens. There's a fellow Carmen and I would like you to meet." He took a few steps and tossed a red fruit through the connection, it was half peeled, "C'mon, you've everything you need right now."

"I left my coat behind this morning," Kay answered with as much dignity as she could muster - given that it was very cold indeed, and that she was trying to have a reasonable conversation with her totally naked twin brother. "I was just headed off to make sure I don't leave it behind tomorrow." She caught the fruit and took a bite out of the peeled side as she turned off into an alley. "'Carmen and I'?" she smirked. "How domestic. Where the hell are you, anyway?"

Jack grinned when she bit into the fruit, his bright blue eyes full of mischief that Kaylee recognized all too well. "Well, Carmen, and I, and her boyfriend Remington." He smiled, "I'm in a place called Atlantis. It's where you need to be, especially now that you've bitten into that fruit." He looked happily smug, and held out his hand. "C'mon now, I promise, you will thank me later."

Kay regarded the fruit - and her brother - with mild suspicion for a moment. Then she shrugged. "If you're wrong…" She trailed off, looking slightly puzzled, and then picked up again, "…You owe me a flutist, two guitarists, and a bass player." She eyed the fruit again, this time a little more thoughtfully, and experimentally licked her lips. Then it clicked; grinning, she scooped a handful of snow off the nearest object and threw it at her brother's head. "Brat," she said, amused. "Took your own sweet time getting around to telling me, didn't you? Bring me through." She held out her hand.

Jack ducked, "Hey! No snow at nude-Jack. Nude-Jack gets massage oil only." He chuckled, "Aah, Kaylee, I'm never wrong about this sort of thing." He smiled, "Making a new band? I mean, damn." He took her hand, "I had to settle in, scout the place out, make sure it was a suitable place to leave my sister." Jack raised his eyebrows, "You remember that time on the tour bus to Texica, we got a hold of that cactus with the little buds on it, and the tequila they soak it in. Valeria and Ray had a bunch, and we had, all that much more to catch up — and then we broke down in the desert, and had to wait for a tow." Jack grinned, "And we had the groupies from the last one-horse burg — remember what that turned into?" He pulled her through onto a balcony, a garden awash in colors was below, the colors bright even in the light of two moons. There was the soft sound of water lapping at the shore of a nearby beach, and soft music on the air. "It's like that. But better."

"You're not getting massage oil from me," Kaylee answered, "and I had to do something to occupy my time. It just happens that 'something' was a band visiting Amber for the first time. It's really too bad you weren't around, though; the rest of the set was female. And don't give me that 'suitable' crap, little brother, 'cause you know I don't believe a word of it." She grinned, looking around curiously. "Yeah, I remember that trip. Most of it, anyway; I'm a little fuzzy about what happened between when the tow driver showed up and when we actually got around to getting the bus towed. Hell of a good time…"

"Oooh, I don't think its too bad at all." Jack grinned, "That's good, 'cuz I don't mean a word of it. I was otherwise occupied, and just now came up for air." The weather was tropical and warm, a stark contrast to where Kaylee had been. "The tow driver showed up? Huh. One moment we were in the bus, the next I was shoved on the stage." Jack nodded, "One of the best times." He smiled, "they're waiting outside." Jack looked her over for a moment, and groaned. "And you're over dressed.' He walked away, "C'mon, you might as well jump right in with both feet." Jack sighed, "I'll try to cope."

"Well, I think that was the tow driver," Kaylee answered dubiously. "He smelled like a mechanic, anyway. And then the bus was towed, and then…" She trailed off, frowning slightly. "I don't remember getting on stage. I remember being on stage… and something about riding the redhead in the third row back to the stage after a body surf… or did I ride him later…?" She chuckled and shrugged. "That's the second time, by the way. Ever. Take the guitar, would ya?" Kay added, swinging the case off her shoulder and handing it to him. "I don't wanna knock it over; these jeans take a little work." Then she started removing her clothes.

Jack rolled his eyes, "Yes, yes. He probably knocked on the door and was dragged into the mess." He shrugged, "I'm not sure it matters. We did the gig, exchanged tired for fresh groupies, got back on the bus, and were on our way. I don't remember any redheads specifically, at least not some ginger dude." He grinned, "Well, I doubt you'll hear it again until we're back to boring, uptight, old Amber. This place, its like home, but more." He took the guitar from her and shouldered the strap, hissing slightly at the roughness of it. He grumbled to himself about tuning back the sensitivity. It took a second for her words to register, and he cursed, "Aw, Dammit." Jack turned away, and leaned against the wall. "I need more wine." He waited a suitable amount of time, "I thought you needed paint thinner to get those off?" He gestured for her to follow, "C'mon."


He stepped out onto the veranda a little while later, with a guitar case over his shoulder. Jack put the instrument down on a table, and stepped out of the doorway. "Carmen, Rem — this is Kaylee, my Twin." He gestured to the doorway, but did not quite look in that direction. Instead, he got the wine, poured two large glasses, and started to drink one while holding out the other in a gesture that was too casual to not have been done before. Jack swirled the glass slightly in a 'hurry up and take it' motion.

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A tanned Remington and Carmen were languidly reclined on one of the sofas; she was not dressed so much as decorated in a sheer hip sarong that bared one leg to the hip. Remington, he was mostly wearing Carmen draped over his lap. Both of them exuded a lazy sensuality that just seemed to be a part of the place.

"I've met your sister, you prat," Carmen drawled. "Hey, Kay."

Remington was giving the blonde an appreciate look-over. "A pleasure."

Kaylee snagged the glass from Jack with the exact same not-quite-looking, though it almost came off as a 'I know you so well, I know where your hand is going to be without looking' gesture. "Hi," she said cheerfully, apparently unconcerned by the state of nakedness of everyone in her room that wasn't her brother. She gave both Carmen and Remington a smile - and tacked on a very frank and interested once-over to Remington's portion. It's very obvious where her second tattoo is; the red and black inks are rather stark against her skin… and very effective at drawing attention to the area. "Nice to meet you."

Remington raised an amused dark eyebrow at the tattoo. He looked down at Carmen. "One of yours?"

"No," the brunette grinned. "She came already detailed." She sat up, ignoring Rem's noise of protest. "Have you eaten, Kay? The fish is divine."

Remington, mindful that a naked Kaylee might not want to sit next to the naked hairless monkey, shifted him and Carmen down on the purple cushioned lounger and patted the now open place beside him. "Interest you in a seat?" he asked casually. Remington was obviously the tallest of the bunch. His muscled chest was darkened with just the right amount of chest hair, and a Pleasure Trail graced his centerline downward. Unlike Jack, who seemed to enjoy having his bits waving in the wind, Remington was wearing a short hip sarong that matched Carmen's sheer blue, was more for protection and decoration then modesty. He had the strong arms of a sculptor, and one muscled bicep was currently decorated with a silver band embossed with leaping dolphins.

The veranda that appeared to wrap around the two story villa of blue marble was wide and faced the darkened turquoise waters that reflected the light of a full moon that hung close in the sky, and a second half moon that was farther up and out from the Atlantean surface. They were neither the brilliant white of Amber's moon; the closets was a pale lavender, the smaller, a softly glowing blue. The sky was littered with stars that lent their pale light to the exotic and colorful foliage around them. Even muted, Kay could tell very little of the plants around them were green. Silver leafed trees with blue trunks rustled softly over the collection of purples, blues, reds, oranges, and a dozen other colors. The beach before them seemed to be of black sand, the moonlight picking up the occasional flash of tiny colored light from the dark ribbon of land that met the clear waters. In the distance, a pair of dolphins frolicked and splashed.

Kay settled into the offered seat with an easy, "Thanks. I'll pass on the food, though; just had breakfast about an hour ago." She turned sideways to face them and tucked her feet up. "So," she continued casually, "I know a bit about Carmen… Why don't you tell me a bit about yourself?" And she smiled just at Remington - a gorgeous, charming smile with just a hint of mischief to it.

Jack chuckled, and sipped at his wine. He took a seat on the other lounger, and made a small gesture for Carmen to join him. He then poured more wine, before looking out at the sound of the dolphins. He rather liked the dolphins, and wanted to try and swim with them if he could. Water adaptation was one of his earliest skills with shapes-shifting. Jack also had a couple of surprises up his proverbial sleeve, Kaylee knew them, but he was a bit concerned Remington might be thrown for a loop — and he was making such fine progress. Jack sipped his wine, smirking. "You'll need your guitar later, Kay. I'm sure you can convince Rem to show you around."

"Just leave it somewhere I can find it," Kaylee answered.

Remington regarded her from hooded eyes a moment before looking at Carmen. "I'm in trouble, aren't in?"

Leaning forward , Carmen looked at Kay with feigned seriousness before looking back at Remington with a bright smile. "Quite likely."

"Excellent!" he exclaimed, kissed Carmen on the temple, draped an arm over the back of the sofa towards Kaylee and gave her a charming smile while the breeze ruffled his dark hair. He wasn't drunk, but he was very mellow. "Your brother insists on trying to give me a nickname, but my name is Remington. I'm the scandalous rebel son of House Burroughs in Begma," he said cheerfully, then leaned in closer and stage whispered; "Shacked up with an Amber Royal in the Artists Quarter, of all places. My mother does go on and on about it. I can't imagine what she would say if she dropped by for a visit and found Jack there. We'd have to try and pass him off as the house boy."

Carmen laughed, patted his knee and unfolded herself from the seat. "Come along, Drummer Boy. You peaked my curiosity earlier. Kay, don't break him, please."

"I haven't broken anyone in at least a week," Kaylee answered with a laugh, mischief sparkling in her eyes. "Don't worry about it." She turned the bright smile back on the sculptor and leaned against the back of the sofa, her shoulder landing just beside his fingertips. "Mom gave up on us a long time ago. She used the word 'incorrigible,' I think." Her head tipped slightly and she tucked a few strands of hair behind one ear. "Or maybe it was 'impossible'. I wasn't paying much attention at the time." She grinned and took a cautious sip of the wine. "Did they tell you much about me?"

Flavors exploded across her tongue. Exotic and unknown, but blending together into something heady and smooth and intoxicating. She could tell that the effect of the fruit Jack had tossed to her earlier had started to fade, but there was more of it at hand; the ruby red of the skins glistened from a golden bowl on the table near Remington.

Jack laughed as well, "I don't do windows." He moved over to Carmen and took her hand, smiling. "Good, that was my intention Angel." As he led her away from the veranda, he said over his shoulder, "That only means she's due. Wear a helmet!" He chuckled and led Carmen away from the veranda and the house, and down to the beach where the stars twinkled merrily over head, and the moon bathed everything in silvery radiance.


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