Star Climber, Sequel to Skybreaker & Airborne

Disclaimer: I do not own these books or the characters

Chapter2: Introductions

The doorbell gave a whimsical ring when Kate pushed the button.

"You look great, Matt" Kate whispered to me, trying to calm my nerves.

"Thanks. So do you" I had finally shelled out and bought a new uniform from the academy with the 4 gold bricks I gained through the Hyperion. My sisters and mother had received some of it the then I had put some into saving and the rest I used on a birthday present for Kate because hers was just a few weeks away.

Just then I got the urge to bolt as we heard someone come to the door. I was steeling my nerves for the first meeting. The door opened and… I was saved because in the doorway stood a flimsy looking old butler.

"Right this way, please" he said in a raspy voice and ushered us into the house.

As we were following him through a myriad of hallways, he spoke. "Your parents were waiting for you two in the sitting room, Miss De Vries."

He led us to a door and when Kate stopped I did the same.

"Good luck, Young Sir," said the butler as he shuffled away.

"O.K. are you ready?" she asked.

"Let's go." I said before she stood on her toes to give me a kiss for luck.

The door opened soundlessly and we walked. There was a large man in a tuxedo standing by the hearth poking the fire. He had a brown beard, with flecks of gray flecked throughout it, following his jawbone up to his sideburns. He turned to look at me as Kate and I entered the room and I noticed that he had the same angled features as Kate did. Next to him in a soft-looking armchair sat an elegant women dressed in a blue dress with hair almost the same color as her daughter. She turned at the same time that the man did. A large smile split the man's face in two while the woman remained impassive.

"Hello, There my boy" he bellowed in a voice that practically shook the floors with its deepness. He crossed the room in 2 large strides and grasped my hand and began to shake it, hard. I blinked in surprise. Kate's father had just broken the rules of etiquette that Kate had deemed so precious.

"Hello, Sir" I said trying to be as courteous as possible as to impress Kate's mother who had not even rose.

"I'm so glad to meet you Kate's told me all about you through the telegrams she's sent. My name is James De Vries." He said as Kate's mother finally stood up and walked over slowly.

I took her hand and trying to be as polite as I could I said, "I'm delighted to meet you"

"It's good to finally meet the person my daughter has been spending so much time with" she said as she eyed me over with contempt.

"Lets get to Dinner," said her father as he began to walk away.

Well, Dinner was delicious and her father immediately delved into asking questions of my adventures which Kate and I told him all about and told some of his own. It turns out he was a soldier in the great rebellion in Greece. After being left there he made his way to Lionsgate city then to Britain and eventually flew home to Paris. When I told him that I was from Lionsgate city he went into great detail about why it was one of his favorite places to vacation. After watching her Husband and I talk for over an hour Kate's mother had barely spoken a word. A couple of times during dinner I would look over to Kate to see how I was doing and she would smile brilliantly at me and that would wipe away all my nervousness.

When her driver was taking me home I felt as if I weighed 10 pounds less.

"Oh my gosh, Matt you were great" said Kate as she turned sideways in her seat to look at me.

"So you think they liked me? I thought your mom seemed a little standoffish," I asked hoping for a good answer.

"Well I thought so, but I hoped it was just me" she said as her brow furrowed.

"Did I do anything wrong?" I asked.

"No" she said gazing up at me."I just think that she needs to get used to you that's all."

"O.k. I'm sure it will work out" I said sounding much less nervous than I felt.

"I don't know what it is" I continued " but just the thought of your parents makes me nervous."

"Mattie it's fine they like you I promise" she crooned as she pulled herself closer to me.

I suddenly became aware of every part of my body all at once. She leaned towards me and I kissed her. I swear no matter how many times we do that its always amazing. Just then we heard the cough of the driver. Could we ever get a minute alone!

When I finally made it to my bed I had the strangest dream. My dad was there with me flying like any other night but then we were in a strange place I had never seen. My father pointed and I turned around and saw the strangest airship I had ever seen. The nose, which came to a point, was aimed towards the heavens. Simultaneously my father disappeared and the strange ship took flight. As I looked towards the cockpit, which had rotated into view, I saw my dad manning the controls. I wanted to follow him but couldn't find a way to he got higher and higher until the ship was just a point in the sky. Then the ship flashed and was gone.