ACES OF HEARTS
Disclaimer: Robotech and all of its characters belong to their respective creators.
< >: Thoughts
A Future Together
<I’m... getting married.>
Max Sterling, the ace pilot of the RDF and defender of the SDF-1 could hardly believe it himself, and he was the one who had proposed. Every now and then, he feared that he would wake up from this dream and she would vanish from his sight forever. He had to pinch himself frequently to assure himself that he wasn’t dreaming. Just a few short hours ago, he had been fighting for his life against his angel, Miriya Parino of the Zentraedi Quadrano Battalion.
Yes, his angel. That's the only way that he could see her as. She was not the warmongering enemy that he had been trained to hate and kill. She was not the foe that had to be destroyed on sight. She was the woman of his dreams and his fiancée, regardless of what she had done in the past. Fate may have cast them as enemies in the beginning but Max was certain that it could be all changed. He knew in his very soul that she was his destiny, for all he wanted to do... was to love her.
The blue-haired pilot took a deep breath as he stopped before the door to his quarters and looked down at the large package in his arms. He hoped they would be to Mirya’s liking.
The former leader of Azonia’s elite squadron did a small pirouette as she gazed at herself in the full-length mirror. The clothes fit well to her figure, but she was understandably puzzled at their appearance. The simple, pink sundress had a billowing skirt which seemed impractical to her, and showed a good amount of her long, slender legs. The sleeveless top bared her shoulders and arms. She hadn’t felt this exposed since wearing that sackdress she had arrived in during her insertion into the SDF-1. The shoes were like the ones she had originally wore, but they were more comfortable and had lower heels.
“Max? What... military purpose does this garment serve?” Miriya asked hesitatingly.
“Uh, well... none.” Max replied as he was still in awe at how lovely she looked. He was sitting nearby and had been doing nothing but drinking in the sight of his green-haired beauty.
“None? But... if it’s not for battle, then what is it for?” The Zentraedi ace inquired.
“Does everything have to be for fighting?” Sterling asked as he stood up and slowly approached her. “I think you look wonderful.”
“I do?” She didn't know why, but hearing him praise her like that made her heart skip a beat and spread a pleasant warmth through her entire being. She was used to compliments and such from her fellow Quadrano pilots and her superiors, but hearing him say them made her feel so... she just couldn't describe the sensations.
Though she would have preferred her brown bodysuit and boots, she had decided to wear these clothes to please Max. The thought of seeing him smile gave her great satisfaction and joy, which was ironic, considering that she had tried to kill him the night before. These new emotions toward him confused, yet excited her. She had been given a taste of what Max had to offer to her, and she had become hungry for more.
However, with these new experiences, also came a new kind of sensation... fear of the uncertain. She had no idea of what direction she should take in her life. All she knew was that Max HAD to be there with her to face the future.
“Miriya? Are you all right?” Max asked as he stood behind her and placed his hands lightly on her shoulders. He noted that she had become a bit forlorn.
The Quadrano ace trembled slightly as she felt his touch, yet did not shy away from him. She took a deep breath, turned around and gazed into the blue depths of his eyes for a long moment. Finally, she spoke.
“I... do not know. This is all so... strange to me. I do not understand any of this. I came here to... to...”
“Yes. It was all so simple and now I cannot even say it. I cannot even THINK of the fact that I tried to end you life and... now you wish to spend the rest of your life with me? I‘m your enemy! I‘m... so confused. Is this even right?”
“Yes. It’s right, Miriya.” Max nodded with the utmost confidence.
“How can you say that?”
“I can say that...” He leaned closer to her while gently framing her face with his hands. “... because I love you.”
With those words, he kissed her deeply and it took all of Miriya’s willpower not to swoon. How could such simple contact between lips be so stimulating? What was this powerful urge to get even closer to him? Her body trembled at being so close and intimate with Max, and the only desire in her heart was to be with him, always.
Max was so... UNLIKE what she had envisioned the Micronian ace would be like. He was gentle, and showed her a tenderness that she had never experienced before. No one had EVER given her such attention and caring in her entire existence. And whenever she looked into those ghostly-blue eyes, she could almost swear that she could see his very soul. She liked that very much.
This thing that he called love was indeed a powerful force and the Zentreadi pilot couldn’t resist it. Why would she?
Miriya’s legs could barely support her when the kiss ended and she found herself leaning against him for support. Her arms wrapped tightly around him as she laid her head against his chest and listened to his heartbeat. It was a wonderful sound and she could scarcely believe that she had wanted it stopped. She was not at all acting like the Queen of the Quadranos and yet, it didn’t matter any more. What mattered was that she was going to be married, (whatever that meant), and that she and Max were going to be together. She didn’t know what was going to happen to her, but with Max by her side, she would be able to face whatever strange future she was now heading toward.
Everything was going to be all right.
The next morning, the cafeteria...
“Well, it’s about last night. I think I’m going to get married.”
Rick Hunter let loose with one impressive spit-take, nearly drenching his subordinate and best friend in coffee. After coughing for a few moments, he found his voice and summed up his reaction in one exclamation.
“YOU’RE GONNA WHAT?!”
“Marry... I guess.” Max replied quietly as he bowed down his head and began staring at his hands on the table.
“Max, you’re talking nonsense! You only went on ONE date! Don’t you think you take some time to get to know this girl better?”
“It’s... not the time I’m worried about.” The blue-haired pilot said hesitantly.
Standing nearby, Miriya watched with a bit of apprehension as Max spoke with his commanding officer. A part of her feared that he would betray her and turn her in, but that thought was quickly dashed as she knew in her heart that he would never abandon her. She didn’t know why she was so certain, only that she knew.
She watched in fascination as Max’s features became hardened, as he suddenly hit the table in anger and started talking back at his superior. More words were exchanged as Rick suddenly laughed out loud, then pointed a finger at his subordinate. Max stood firm as he continued to argue his side of the situation. It was then that she noticed him signaling to her to approach them.
Taking a deep breath, she began walking toward them, bolstering up all of her courage. As she passed by several tables, she caught sight of three particular individuals who were currently entertaining the Bridge Bunnies. However, she couldn’t do more than give them a passing glance and a small smile, as she neared the table where Max and Rick were sitting at.
Rico, Konda and Bron’s eyes widened to the size of saucers, (the flying kind), and their jaws dropped to the floor.
“Is that who I think it is?!” Rico gasped.
“It... can’t be!” Konda exclaimed.
“It is! It’s her!” Bron affirmed.
Kim, Vanessa and Sammie were a little put off that their ‘dates’ were suddenly interested in another woman and not paying attention to them. They were about to succumb to their urge to smack them upside their heads, when they looked over to where Rick and Max were sitting. Their curiosity was piqued as they saw Max stand up and embrace the strange woman as he introduced her to Rick. Their eyes widened in shock as Max got down on one knee, took out a small velvet box from his pocket, and placed the ring on Miriya’s left third finger.
The main council room...
Gloval was quite upset that Max had waited this long to inform him of the appearance of another Zentraedi defector. He was even more shocked to learn that the ace pilot planned to marry her and that Miriya was quite willing. He could only gaze upon the Zentraedi ace with fascination as she sat in the hot seat with her fiancé.
Miriya was very cooperative as she was being questioned by the SDF-1’s captain and his senior officers. Her responses to their inquiries were straightforward and honest, though the top brass found them hard to swallow.
“So let me see if I understand.” Colonel Maistroff began. “You came to the SDF-1 in order to kill Lieutenant Sterling, our best Veritech pilot. Have I got that right?”
“Yes.” Miriya nodded as she shyly took Max’s hand and smiled at him.
“And now you don’t want to kill him. Instead, you want marry him?”
“That is correct.”
“Because... I...” She turned to face her husband-to-be. “What was that thing you called, Max?”
Max blushed a bit as he replied. “Love.”
“Yes, that is it. I love him.”
“Huh? Love him?” The colonel and the rest of the top brass became even more confused.
“Is that not a good enough reason?” Miriya asked.
“Well, I... uh, that is...” Maistroff stuttered as he tried to regain his composure. “I mean, when you say you... love him... uh... you’re a Zentreadi.”
“Yes I am Zentraedi. So what does that have to do with my wanting to be with Maximilian?”
“Well... I... didn’t... I mean, we... weren’t aware that the Zentraedi even knew what love is... and... I mean, no offense but...”
All eyes turned to Captain Gloval as he cleared his voice, quietly telling Maistroff to stop before he dug that hole any deeper. He addressed the Zentreadi ace in a firm tone.
“You must forgive the Colonel’s lack of tact. This war has been quite trying on all on board this ship. We were surprised to hear that one of our own intends to marry a member of the enemy forces, who had originally come with the intent of murdering him.”
“Captain! Miriya isn’t...”
“I did not give you permission to speak now, Lieutenant, so I expect you to hold your tongue until then.” Gloval gave Sterling a frown, which immediately made Max go silent. He then turned his attention back to Miriya. “Now then, Miriya, could you explain to all of us as to why you suddenly changed your mind and decided not to kill Sterling? Are you even aware as to what marriage is?”
Miriya nodded. “Max had explained it to me that when two people love each other, then marriage becomes the next step. And I came to realize that I do love him. I will marry him. It is that simple.”
“Well, I wouldn’t say it is THAT simple. However, you do realize that your actions may have some serious consequences.”
“Yes, Captain, I do.”
“You might be hated by your own people, just as the other defectors.”
“You may never be able to return to your own people.”
“I am aware of that.”
“You may find that not everyone on board this ship will accept you.”
“I can expect such things.”
“And you are still willing to marry Sterling?”
“I love him.” Miriya said simply and confidently.
“Captain! You can’t seriously believe all this!” Maistroff exclaimed.
Gloval gave Maistroff a bit of a glare, then addressed the two lovers. “Miriya wishes to defect to this ship, just as the other Zentraedi had come, looking for an alternative to constantly engaging in war. The only difference is that she is willing to undergo one of the most sacred acts of our society. That in itself has made me to believe that her intent to be genuine. So I see no real reason to deny her.”
Both Max and Miriya smiled as their clasped hands squeezed each other tighter.
“This is ridiculous! It’s some kind of trick!” The colonel declared as he stood up and slammed his hands on the conference table. “We can’t truly believe all of this love and marriage nonsense! I say that she should be placed into the internment section with the other Zentraedi. This may all be some kind of elaborate ruse!”
Both Max and Miriya became alarmed at the possibility of being separated. They had just found each other and were ready to spend a lifetime together. They couldn’t be torn apart now.
Thankfully, Captain Gloval was on their side, as he ordered Maistroff to sit down and shut up. “Maistroff, I have already given my blessings to these two and I shall hear no more arguments of it.”
“I SAID, I shall hear no more arguments. We have already extended the hand of acceptance to the other Zentraedi defectors. To deny Miriya that same hand would make us nothing but hypocrites. And besides, do you realize that we have here an opportunity to perhaps end this war sooner?”
“Think of it, Maistroff. We have already seen how some Zentraedi have become interested in our way of life. They had gone to great lengths and risk, abandoning all that they ever knew, in order to embrace our world. And now, their greatest fighter pilot wishes to marry one of our own. If THAT is not an incentive to put an end to this long and costly Robotech War, then I do not know what is. Lieutenant Sterling may have broken proper procedure with his emotions, but I see it as a blessing, just as I am now giving it to him and his fiancée.”
“Captain, you’re not serious are you?”
“I am MOST serious, Maistroff. I want no expense spared for these nuptials. That is an order.”
Max smiled with his bride-to-be as he brought her close in an embrace and leaned forward to kiss her.
Both stopped with less than an inch between their lips and looked back at the captain, who gave them a slightly whimsical smile.
“Could you two wait until the minister pronounces you husband and wife?”
Miriya couldn’t believe how she looked as she gazed in the mirror.
On her left were Sammie and Kim, who were fussing over her wedding gown’s ruffles and sleeves. On her right was Vanessa, who was arranging the wedding veil. As soon as word got out for the wedding preparations, the Bridge Bunnies had immediately elected themselves as Miriya’s bridesmaids. As for her maid of honor, that position was taken up by Claudia Grant. Though the bridge officer was still saddened over the loss of Roy Fokker, she harbored no ill will against Max’s intended. In fact, she was quite eager to see something good come out of this terrible conflict.
“Hmmm, I think that the sleeves should be tapered back a bit more.” The dark-skinned woman suggested as she assessed Miriya’s wedding attire. “And instead of those high-heels, I think Miriya would prefer those low-heels.” She pointed over to a selection of shoes. She then walked up to the future bride and winked. “I’m certain that your feet would appreciate them.”
“H-How did you know?” The Zentraedi girl asked in surprise.
“Oh, just call it a woman’s intuition.”
Just then, Sammie came up to her and handed Miriya a bouquet. “Here you go Miriya. You look fabulous! Oh, I wish I was getting married! Say, when you toss the bouquet, be sure to throw it my way, okay?”
“Uhm... all right.” Miriya wasn't certain why Sammie would request to have plants thrown at her. Perhaps this was another Micronian custom?
“Hey! Who said you were going to catch it?” Kim cried out. “Miriya can throw it to anyone she wants!”
“That’s right, and I’m certain I’ll be the one who gets it.” Vanrssa declared.
The Bridge Bunnies soon got into an argument as to which one of them was going to catch the bridal bouquet. Standing with Miriya, Claudia developed a very large sweatdrop.
The green-haired girl however, was still confused. “I don’t understand. What does throwing plants at someone mean?”
Claudia smiled and replied. “It’s just an old custom at weddings. You see, when the bride throws her bouquet after the ceremony, the next single girl who catches it...”
“C’mon Max. Everything is going to be all right.” Rick assured as he helped his friend adjust his tux.
Max was still a bit nervous that he was going to be married in less than an hour. As this was a battle-fortress, it had been unanimously agreed that the affair would have all the trappings of a military wedding. Dr. Lang had come up with some interesting effects for the event. The entire Skull Squadron would play a pivotal part in the ceremony.
At that time, a knock was heard at the door to their room. As the door opened, Max was quite surprised to see Mr. and Mrs. Dixon. In her arms, Ben’s mother held little Maxine.
“Congratulations, son!” Ben’s father said as he slapped him mightily on the back.
“We’re so happy for you.” His wife agreed whole-heartedly. “That girl is very lucky to have you.”
“Mr. and Mrs. Dixon... it’s great to see you and... what are you...?”
Ben’s parents smiled at the groom’s sudden lack of control. Mrs. Dixon nodded as she cooed her daughter, then addressed Max. “You didn’t think that we were going to miss our son’s wedding did you?”
“But I’m not your son.” Max pointed out.
“As far as we’re concerned, you are.” Mr. Dixon affirmed.
Mrs. Dixon nodded again. “Yes. Oh, I wish that Ben were here to see his little brother getting married.” She then smiled toward Rick. “And you must be Rick. Max has told us so much about you in his letters.”
As the Dixons got to know Rick, Max could only watch and smile. He then looked out a nearby window at the Earth below as it continued to float in the star-studded void. He then saw an image of Ben’s smiling face and smiled back at it.
Miriya couldn't stop trembling as she and Max sped by the ranks of Battloids in his Veritech. Each mecha was throwing forth beams of light like crossed swords. They were flying over a rainbow-colored runway that was being projected from the Prometheus. Above them, fireworks were being set off, lighting up the space around them in bright, flashes of color. She couldn’t believe that all of this was being done in honor of her union with Max. She had received many medals for valor in battle, but this went far beyond anything she had ever experienced. However, she was just so happy to be with Max, that she wanted everyone to share her joy.
For Max Sterling, he was just happy to be with the woman he loved. The whole thing was being televised all over the ship and even to the people on Earth. Though he would have preferred a simple, intimate wedding, he was still glad that his fondest dream was about to come true. He glanced over his shoulder and smiled as he saw his bride make another adjustment to her veil. She was just as anxious as he was, but when she looked up at him and smiled back, Max felt a new surge of confidence.
This was the happiest day of their lives.
“Do you, Maximilian Sterling, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife? To love, honor and cherish, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, for as long as you both shall live, ‘till death do you part?”
Max smiled as took Miriya’s left hand. “I do, but I will love her, beyond death and eternity.”
The minister nodded as he then addressed Miriya. “And do you, Miriya Parino...?”
“I agree to all of what you have said to Maximilian.” She interrupted as she turned to face her beloved. “And I wish to add that before I met Max, I only knew of the battlefield. I did not know of truly living, until I met him. My heart is yours Maximilian, and I shall treasure each and every moment of our lives together.”
The minister nodded and smiled as he turned to Rick Hunter. “The rings?”
Hunter produced two golden circlets from his pocket and handed them to the couple, instructing them to place the rings on the third finger of their left hands. When it was done, he proudly pronounced them as husband and wife.
Camera flashes lit up the wedding hall and cheers drowned out every other noise as the two kissed deeply.
Max was more than nervous as he and Miriya retired for the night. It had been a whirlwind of events after they had started on their new life together. The Zentraedi attack that took place just minutes after the wedding reception had been badly timed, but to everyone’s surprise and relief, they suddenly broke off. No one was sure as to why they suddenly pulled back, but they didn’t complain.
The newlyweds had been given larger quarters at the RDF base, though it hadn’t been soundproofed yet. They had given Rick quite an earful when Miriya accidentally cooked the coffeepot.
But now, came a new dilemma, which was their wedding night. Miriya was of course... inexperienced, as was Max. She was more than embarrassed when her husband gently untied the ribbon, which held her nightdress together. When she was bared to her mate, she instinctively began taking off Max’s clothes.
Slowly, but surely, the two began exploring each other’s forms. Max couldn’t stop thinking how beautiful she was, and forced himself to take things slowly. For Miriya, her initial impressions with such acts made her want to run in fear, but with her husband’s gentle words of praise and encouragement, her body eventually eased in its tension. She marveled at how well their forms fit together. It was almost as if they were made for each other. Every touch, every kiss, every caress, made Miriya hunger for more. She felt herself trying to sate a need so overwhelming, that nothing else mattered. She didn’t know what that need was, but she knew that only Max could satisfy it.
Then, when they finally became one, Miriya cried out as a sudden, sharp pain stabbed into her. Max stiffened and began apologizing for hurting his wife. However, for the Zentraedi ace pilot, the raw feeling was already gone and she felt a kind of fulfilling warmth spreading all over her body. It was if a void that she had been unaware of, had been filled and now she was complete.
Soon, the mating ritual took over as the two began climbing toward their peaks of absolute bliss. Miriya could feel a delicious pressure building as she began moving in rhythm with her spouse. She felt her right hand grasping Max’s left above her head as they continued. Finally, after what seemed to be an eternity, they both cried out as they reached their highest levels of ecstasy.
Miriya’s breathing came back down to normal levels as she and Max continued to embrace each other in the warm afterglow of their lovemaking. She had never felt so broken and spent, yet feel so renewed and refreshed. What she and Max had done went beyond words, yet need not be described as anything less than wonderful.
Before long, the two began again... and again... and again...
For now, the war was forgotten as the two greatest pilots of the Earth and the Zentraedi, continued to duel on a more intimate battlefield.
But soon, new challenges would be sent against these two Aces of Hearts...
To be continued...
Well, there we have it. I’ll admit that this chapter was a bit on the lime side, but I made sure not to cross certain lines and it’s no more R-rated than a Harlequin Romance Novel. In any case, that takes care of chapter 8 and there’s about two more chapters left to go in the Max and Miriya story. I’ve enjoyed writing this story and I’m amazed at how fast I’m able to crank this out. See you in chapter 9 as a certain emissary comes to the SDF-1 and our favorite couple must face the biggest battle of their carreers. Stay tuned!