A/N: Thank you to all my readers for the wonderful reviews! They truly inspire and uplift me. But anyways, I apologize if Silver is OOC; I tried to write him as true to the movie as I could. Any suggestions on characterization are eagerly welcomed, as I don't want to ruin this story.
Also, to answer a question left in one of the reviews, B.E.N. was taken to the Interstellar Academy to be analyzed, and Morph went with Delbert on his vacation to help amuse the children. But don't worry; both will reappear in later chapters.
Silver sighed as he finished drying the last of the dishes. Honestly, although he was enjoying his stay at the Benbow, there were days that he missed the cool, crisp winds of the etherium. Nothing could quite compare to the smell of lacquered wood or the sound of a ship's lonely creaking in the dead of night. And absolutely nothing could compare to the view. Silver absently placed the last dish into a cabinet before staring out the window. If he craned his head just so and squinted, he could almost make out the bright star of the world Kinapas.
Making his way outside, Silver pulled his coat closer at the brisk air. Winter was quickly approaching this hemisphere of Montressor, and Silver was reminded again why he had always avoided this particular planet. He hated the cold; he honestly did. He made his way out to the front of the inn, carefully checking that no one was watching before realizing that there was no reason to. It was hardly likely that Sarah would accuse him of going soft just for watching the stars. Silver stopped and chuckled. Even after all this time, old habits died hard.
He leaned against the cool brick wall, his eyes roving over the vast plethora of blazing stars in the sky. Starting from the east, he carefully noted all the constellations, taking comfort in the knowledge that he still knew his way around the galaxy, even if thought of late had been…confused. Every since his conversation with Sarah two nights ago, he had been trying to keep their association professional, even if only on the surface. If Sarah had noticed anything different about his behavior (namely the fact that his touches did not linger and that he kept his eyes on her eyes during every conversation), she had said nothing. Inwardly, however, he had been fighting a losing battle to keep from seeing her in any way besides an employer.
Silver sighed and pressed a hand to his eyes. He still remembered Captain Amelia's taunt about "spaceport floozies", and he could not deny that there was some truth to the jibe. Silver had always known himself well, and one thing he had always known was that he would never be one to settle down. Although he had always tried to be somewhat picky in his choice of such company, he could not say that his attempts had always been successful. After all, voyages on the etherium were long; and he couldn't deny that his body had needs. He had often chosen to engage in the services of such ladies, and once or twice he had met a particularly nice barmaid; but never had he entertained the idea of settling down with any of them.
Which was what made his current predicament so hazardous. Sarah was in no way comparable to any of his past "company"; and he knew quite well that it would have to remain that way. Always in the past, his companions had been concerned either with payment or perhaps a good time followed by interesting conversation. But Sarah was interested in neither. Instead, her mind was occupied by her responsibilities, her business, and her lad. Her lad. Perhaps e'en…me lad, Silver admitted to himself. His heart contracted strangely at the acknowledgement. For although the boy may have been sired by another, Silver knew that Jim was his son, in every way that mattered.
For a moment, Silver gazed up at the stars and silently cursed the man who had created this situation. He cursed the man who had left such a caring, patient wife and such a vulnerable, spirited son. But as he gazed up at the etherium, Silver felt the familiar tug in his soul, the comforting pull that told him he belonged up there…belonged to it, in so many ways. Had Jimbo's father felt the same way? Or had he simply grown tired of his commitments? Silver frowned as the constellation Pleiades winked at him, and he cursed Leland Hawkins again.