Chapter 4: Kissing

It'd been about a week since Nick was introduced to the Trager household, and he'd been assimilating extremely well. Except for the part about speaking.

Nick knew English; in fact, he knew French, Spanish, Hungarian, Chinese, Arabic, Latin, and countless other languages as well. However, near instant translation of thoughts to and from Kyle kept him from seeing the point in using other methods of communication.

Good Morning, Kyle thought to Nick as he entered the bedroom. Though there were accommodations in the house that would allow the two their separate sleeping quarters, the telepathic connection seemed to draw them together. At one point Nicole tried to get the two to separate, but they were too busy engaging in data transfer regarding worldly information to pay her any attention.

Salve. Nick smiled and Kyle's vision was shrouded with a warm light.

You know, Nick, you're almost getting a little too good at telepathy. Kyle sat on the edge of the tub where his counterpart lay.

Is there such a thing as being 'too good'? A pause allowed Nick to weave through the thoughts at the base of Kyle's consciousness. A few partial images filtered in and out of the telepathic network. Nick plucked up a single image from the group and pulled it to the forefront of the communication. What's this?

The image of the pair intertwined in the tub flashed into Kyle's mind. Nothing. Just a wondering thought. Nick's head tilted to the side and he gave a disappointed look. Kyle should've known better than to try to lie through the telepathic com-link. It's not appropriate. I shouldn't be thinking those things.

Nick reached up to place his hand on Kyle's. It's okay. I think them, too. Images from Nick's mind filled Kyle's head. They were only kissing, but the emotion accompanying the images was overwhelming. Kyle fell softly into the tub and fulfilled Nick's thoughts. The kisses were soft and pleasant; the stuff of young girls' Prince Charming fantasies. After a few minutes, Kyle finally loosed himself from the telepathic enthrallment.

"Kyle!" Nicole's voice rang from the kitchen. She entered the bedroom with her hair in a mess. "Kyle, what just happened?" She didn't even seem fazed by the fact that Kyle was laying atop the new addition to their family.

"What do you mean?"

"Everyone was just sitting in the kitchen and then Stephen and I were suddenly kissing and apparently Josh and Lori kissed as well." Nick chuckled quietly and Kyle adorned a shocked and embarrassed expression.

"Mooooooom!" Lori yelled as she marched to Kyle's room. "What did he do?" She wiped her lips and spat air trying to clean her mouth. "This is so wrong. Kyle, I swear to God, I will destroy you!"

Nick shifted Kyle's weight and sat up. With a look he calmed Lori and shut her mouth. Looking to Kyle, he spoke his first words aloud. "I was… 'too good'."


Why is it wrong that Lori and Josh kissed?

They're brother and sister.

So it's wrong?


But why?

Because brothers and sisters should not be together. It is biologically maladaptive to have relatives within a separation of a factor of seven to reproduce and this behavior is therefore taboo in all known cultures.

But kissing has no bearing on reproduction. We kissed and we cannot reproduce.

No… but it isn't reproduction that Lori finds uncomfortable with the situation.

Then what is it?

It's the… implications that come with kissing.

What implications?

The implications of a desire to hold an intimate, passionate relationship.

But you wanted to kiss me, and I wanted to kiss you.


But we cannot hold such a relationship. We are both gender designated XY. We cannot reproduce, so we cannot.

Reproduction is not the only purpose for such a relationship.

What else is there?

Kyle paused, reflecting the thoughts and feelings that Nick had presented earlier while leaving his own thoughts and feelings up for his counterpart's interpretation.

There is Love.