Disclaimer: Not mine.

Always the Same

Zoil slides a cup of coffee across the table, and he catches it with ease, curling his long fingers around the hot paper cup. He pulls it closer, stares into the dark liquid, and barely hears the human asking,

"Rough night, Short Round?"

And maybe it has something to do with the way he slept, or maybe it's because it's one of those goddamn early days and he really, really isn't a morning person. Maybe it's a combination of both, and he just woke up on the wrong side of the bed, as the humans like to say.

Or maybe it has something to do with the way his mind's wandered from him again. Away from this base and away from whatever job they put him up to now, and back to bad weather and malfunctioning anti-gravity generators and a little girl and her crushed dog.

He wonders how she's doing, if she remembers him, if she thinks of him the way he thinks of her from time to time.

Zoil clears his throat. Paul looks up, bringing the cup slowly toward his lips.

"SSDD, man. SSDD."