Gaila had 8 sisters and each one was more impossibly beautiful than the last. They were tall, green, and they all had long black hair that cascaded down their shoulders. And their bodies...these women had the kind of curves Nyota Uhura had only seen in centerfolds and lingerie catalogs.
But it was Gaila's mother was the real showstopper.
Actually Mothers, plural, Gaila had two. Nerasa, Gaila's birth mother, a curvy older woman with the body of a twenty year old, and Gressa, Gaila's step mother who didn't look much older than Gaila herself and had the largest breasts Uhura had ever seen.
There were all gorgeous, they were all green, and they were all very Orion.
So when the door to their dorm room opened, Nyota was assaulted by a horde of shrieking, laughing sex pots who pushed their way into the room and wrapped their arms around her roommate.
"Mommies! Sisters!" Gaila said with a shriek as 20 arms squeezed around the young Orion.
Nyota had been an only child and she had spent most of her life with her Grandmother so she'd never experienced a family this large and constantly happy.
Well, happy for Orions, which seemed to involve lots of sex and skimpy metal biknis.
"Mother, this is my roommate Nyota," Gaila said as she pushed Nyota towards the horde of smiling green women, "She's single."
Gaila and both of her mothers exchanged a sly smile and before she could ask her roommate why her marital status was so important, Nerasa, the elder wife, led her family in a bow of respect that made Nyota look like the most important person in the room. "Blessings on you and your clan."
Nyota gave a polite wave but kept quiet as Gaila and her family caught up on all the things that had changed since Gaila had been away. It was the first time she heard a family discussion that qualified as pornographic.
"Oh mother! You look lovely, how's the brothel?"
"Business is booming, I'm thinking of merging with Gerzka's pleasure house next year."
"Wonderful!" Gaila cried as she hugged her mother again, "Maras, are you still dating that Kriosian prince?"
The tallest of Gaila's sisters, obviously Maras, spoke up, "No, I tired of him; I'm a freelance courtesan now."
"Fantastic! And Gressa you look great! I see you got the breast reduction."
"I'm glad I did, my back feels so much better. Still I'm only sexing half the men I used to."
Nyota watched her roommate scan the room with disappointment and the girl's face fell. "Where is Papa?"
Gressa put her hand on Gaila's shoulder in an attempt to comfort her, "The Orion Free Traders are going to war against the Nausicaan pirates and they wanted your father's Interceptor in their fleet. I'm afraid he'll be away for some time."
The women grew quiet for a moment until Nerasa tried to lift her daughter's spirits. "Your brother Hovir is here!"
"Downstairs, he met this lovely Xindi woman in the corridor and they retired to her room to have sex." Nerasa smiled then suddenly remembered Nyota standing nearby, staring in utter shock at a group of women who were simply so alien that she struggled to understand their thought process. "Oh but I forgot that you're living with another female now! How absent minded of me! Hovir should've saved himself for your friend." Nerasa said as she gave Uhura a little bow, "Do you wish to have sex with my son when he's done with the Xindi? I'm sure he'll have plenty of stamina left over."
"He's fantastic." Gressa said, "His penis is very large."
Uhura had absolutely nothing to say. After a year of living with Gaila, she was certain that she'd heard just about every possible offer of casual sex in the universe but this was a little hard to take. "Uh, no thank you."
"Would you prefer one of my daughters instead?"Nerasa's voice was very sincere and motherly, like she was casually offering a glass of lemonade, "Or myself? I'm very good."
Uhura's eyes went so wide, Gaila had to bite her lip to keep from laughing.
Hovir did finish with the Xindi (although, it took a while) and joined Gaila and Nyota for a light lunch in the Academy Dining Hall.
Nyota had heard stories about the size of Orion men but when Hovir first approached the table, she thought he looked like a mountain. He was 6'5, with at least 300 pounds of pure muscle pulsing under a surface of lime green skin, a light shade than his sisters and mothers but a little darker than Gaila herself. Orion men shaved their heads to fulfill several religious obligations and she could see the reddish stubble that was threatening to poke it's way out of his skull. It was interesting, Nyota thought, that he had the same hair color as Gaila. He and his sister must take after their father. His face was handsome but innocent and she wondered if he was much older than 17.
"Nyota, this is Hovir, Hovir this is Nyota." Gaila said as she motioned to her brother proudly. The young Orion timidly nodded his head, and then sat on the plastiform chair that was clearly built for a smaller humanoid.
"It's a pleasure to meet you." Uhura said as she extended a hand to the gigantic green man in front of her and when he shook her hand, she felt like his massive paw was wrapping around her.
Hovir, blushed a deep olive and mumbled a "hello" in return.
"So Nyota, this is my brother's first time on Earth…maybe you could show him around for me."
Uhura plastered a big smile on her face and tried very hard not to let Gaila realize that after an hour of almost getting molested by Nerasa and her VERY loving family, she was kind of burned out on big green sex monsters. "That would be…great." She said through gritted teeth.
There was a whooshing sound as Gaila rushed past her roommate for the door, "Wonderful! let me know when you're done!" And then she was gone, leaving Uhura alone with a total stranger.
She glared at her roommate's fleeing green figure. Uhura wondered if this had been Gaila's plan the whole time: to leave the poor human to babysit "little Hovir" while she and the women of her family trolled the campus for men.
That was when it dawned on Uhura that 11 very horny Orion women were roaming the city of San Francisco totally unsupervised. She pictured a holomovie that might follow the same plot, one part horror movie/one part porno: "The Alien Sex Monsters That Humped San Francisco".
The men of Earth were doomed, Uhura thought.
There was a moment of awkward silence as Hovir and Uhura realized they had nothing to say to each other. But Hovir surprised her and spoke up in a deep, nervous voice. "I'm sorry for being late, my step mom told me to have sex with this Xindi girl that held the door open for us and I had to explain to her why she shouldn't be insulted by what my mom said and she got really weirded out and…it was awkward."
"I understand." A shy Orion who didn't want to have sex with total strangers. Now Uhura had seen everything.
"I also want to apologize for my sister. Even though she's lived on this planet for a year, I don't think she really understands humans very well." Hovir flashed a sheepish grin, "My mothers and sisters are Orion women and they think everything begins and ends with sex. It must seem weird to you."
"It took a little getting used to." Uhura said with a smile, she liked this kid, "But you seem very different."
"I am. I read a lot about alien cultures and I think this planet is really cool so I'm trying to, you know, adapt." He blushed even deeper as he continued to explain, "I like girls and I like sex, same as any other Orion, I just try to be a lot more discreet about it."
Uhura nodded, trying to be polite. She took a sip of her orange juice just as Hovir dropped a megaton bomb into the conversation.
"Look, you can be honest with me. If you don't want to marry me, I'll totally understand."
Uhura spit the entire cup of juice across the room.
"You embarrassed me in front of my mothers and sisters, Nyota!" Gaila shouted at her, practically in tears as Uhura sat calmly at the other end of the dorm room, utterly stunned by her friend's reaction. This was the first time she'd ever seen her roommate frown, let alone cry.
Uhura spoke calmly and slowly. This was a cultural misunderstanding and she didn't want to make things worse. "I didn't mean to insult you, I'm sure he's a great guy-"
"Then why don't you want to marry him?" Gaila snarled
"Because that's not…humans don't choose their mates like that."
"By the gods, I am so sick of all these crazy human rules!" Gaila was so frustrated that she threw a datapad into the wall, cracking the carbon fiber plastic cover. "You call yourself my friend but you won't have threesomes with me, you go weeks without sex like it's nothing, and then you reject my brother's offer of marriage." She flashed a look of rage at her "former" friend and Uhura felt the heat of a thousand suns pointed in her direction, "What's the matter, are we not good enough for you?"
"Gaila, I didn't reject him. He didn't actually ask me." She tried again, speaking calmly and clearly, "Look, I know my culture must seem really weird to you but just because I don't want to have sex with your brother doesn't mean-"
"WHO SAID ANYTHING ABOUT SEX? I'M TALKING ABOUT MARRIAGE!" Gaila screamed. There was a sad, angry look in her eye as a floodgate of frustration and rage flowed out the Orion woman, "NOT EVERYBODY GETS TO GROW UP ON SOME FRILLY HUMAN PARADISE! SOME OF US HAVE TO LIVE IN THE REAL GALAXY, NYOTA!" Then she started to cry, releasing big terrible sobs that seemed to cut their way into Uhura's chest.
As tears flowed down Gaila's green skin, Uhura was left utterly speechless.
"And I assume the situation has not yet improved?" Spock's eyebrow was raised almost to his hair line after hearing Uhura's story.
Spock had been Uhura's first choice when seeking out advice for most of the previous semester and it surprised her how comfortable she felt around her former science instructor. While other people found the Vulcan's penetrating stare and monotone voice uncomfortable, Uhura found it oddly comforting.
And his door was always open to her. Even though discussions about college girl drama made him incredibly uncomfortable, Uhura knew she could always count on his quiet strength to get her through whatever was bothering her.
"So what did I do wrong? Don't tell me I actually have to marry the kid to get my best friend back!"
"I am afraid that there is very little you can do in this circumstance." Spock returned his data padd to the desk drawer and returned his probing gaze to Uhura's face, "Cadet Gaila may be too frightened to listen to reason."
"Orion men have less social mobility than females. The matriarchal syndicate that controls Orion's government often kidnaps unmarried men to use as pirate soldiers or worse, slave labor." Spock said, "Even those who escape slavery have no choice but to join merchant fleets like the Orion Free Traders and service in an OTF Merchant fleet can be extremely dangerous."
Uhura imagined nervous "little" Hovir standing on a Syndicate auction block or forced to fight on a Syndicate warship. Gaila's outburst suddenly made a lot more sense now. "She's upset because if I married Hovir, he could move to Earth and never become a slave."
Spock nodded, "It's possible Gaila and her mothers are desperately trying to find a solution to Hovir's living situation before he's forced into a life of hardship." Suddenly the Vulcan's eyes clouded over in thought, "My own father often struggled with similar problems after my brother turned to a life of crime."
Uhura blinked. In the year she'd been confiding in Spock, he'd never once mentioned a brother, "You have a brother?"
"A half-brother from my father's first marriage, his name is Sybok and he is…I have not seen him in many years." If she didn't know any better, Spock almost sounded…sad.
"You never talk about him."
"That is because he is not my favorite subject of discussion."
"I'm sorry, I didn't know."
"It is illogical to apologize for something that is not your fault. Sybok was exiled from Vulcan when I was a teenager." Spock said, "Despite my family's best efforts, Sybok became a criminal."
Uhura was stunned, not just a brother but a black sheep of a brother, "A criminal? What was his crime?"
"He committed many but the crime that sent him into exile was treason. He joined an extremist group that attempted to over throw the High Council."
She knew that sympathy was just going to make him very uncomfortable, but she couldn't stop herself. "I'm sorry to hear that."
Spock lifted his eyebrow, "You continue to apologize for things that are beyond your control." Classic Spock
"I'm just trying to tell you that I understand what you're going through."
"I mean no disrespect but I doubt that you truly do understand." That made Uhura look up at her Vulcan mentor with concern. There was a hard edge in his voice telling her that this was not a pleasant subject for him."You are an only child and therefore do not fully comprehend the struggles that a multi-child household must suffer through to ensure prosperity for their offspring."
"If a marriage of convenience allowed my family to ensure that our brother would remain on the correct path in life, we would have explored such an option."
Uhura couldn't help herself. She reached down to Spock's hand and gripped it tightly. "I'm sure they did everything they could."
For a brief moment Spock seemed to relish the sensation of contact before quickly jerking his hand away. "I beg your pardon but I have papers to grade." He rose from his chair and led her to the door. Leaving her to ponder a problem that had no solution.
It was the first time her mentor had failed to provide a solution to her problem. To make matters worse, just asking Spock for help had forced him to relive a painful family drama.
Good work, Nyota, she thought, you managed to alienate two friends in a row. As she walk out of the Academy's science offices, she briefly remember Spock's words to her.
"…we would have explored such an option vigorously."
Not every family in the galaxy had the option of choosing their destiny and Hovir was doomed to-
Options, Uhura thought.
Then she had an idea...
Earth might've been the political capital of the Federation but Bolia Prime was the financial capital. Millions of credits passed through the latnium coated walls of his dozens of banks and stock markets. Humans may claim they didn't care about money anymore but the rest of the Galaxy had rent to pay and for most of it's existence, the Royal Bank of Bolia was the only place in the universe the major galactic corporations did their financial business. To become a "Bolian Banker" was to be part of a grand tradition of loyalty, quality, and friendly customer service.
At least that was what it said on the training manual they gave Hovir when he arrived on Bolia.
Gaila smiled when her brother stepped up to his little cubicle behind the counter and she smiled even wider when she watched him aid a trouble customer in withdrawing money from a particularly complicated 500 year old savings account. He does such a good job that the account manager comes over and tries to pat Hovir on the shoulder but because of his large size he has to settle for the man's lower back.
"Oh, this is wonderful!" Gaila squealed, "Nyota, how did you get him this job!"
"I have a friend from high school who works here now, I got him the interview and he landed the job." Uhura made a mental note to thank Muhammad for his help. She made another mental note not to let Gaila thank Muhammad in person otherwise his wife would throw a fit.
Standing beside the young women, Spock seemed to share their enthusiasm. "It was a most inspired solution, Cadet Uhura."
"We're technically here on vacation, Spock, you can call me Nyota." She with a smile. In the pale Bolian sunlight, Spock did look quite handsome in civilian clothing.
"You are on vacation, I am merely off duty." He said curtly and then turned to leave.
Uhura didn't blame him for rushing out of the building because seconds later Gaila's entire family ran into the room and wrapped the tiny cadet into a group hug.
Sly Vulcan dog ditched me so he wouldn't get mauled. Uhura thought with a smile as Baras, Gaila's father, waded through the sea of thankful green women and pulled her toward him. Uhura didn't think it was possible for anyone to be bigger than Hovir but Baras was at least a foot taller than his son and had even bigger muscles and shoulders.
"Nyota of Clan Uhura, you have given my family a great gift." The massive giant wrapped his arms around her and lifted her off the floor, "I must reward you!"
"I hardly think that's necessary-" The big man squeezed her tiny figure with joy and Uhura could feel the air leaving her lungs. It was no mystery why Gaila preferred Human men over Orion men, because the affection of Orion men felt a lot like suffocation.
"No! You've returned honor and joy to my son, allow me to pleasure your body to return the pleasure I feel in my heart!" Baras' voice was a booming baritone and Uhura could swear she saw some of the other customers were staring at them.
"Let me have sex with you!" Baras said
"Oh yes, please, by all means have sex with our husband!" Gressa gasped excitedly.
"He's very good at it." Nerasa added.
Uhura started to stammer frantically when she heard Gaila whispering in her ear. "I know you're going to say no to this...," Gaila said, "But my father is considering taking another wife and my mothers would just love to have you in the family."