Laying alone in the ISO lab, Blink ran her hands over belly for the umpteenth time. She almost felt she could feel… something changing each time. Was she getting larger? Swelling with whatever was growing inside her? No, her imagination was running overtime. But she wasn't imagining the lethergy, the strange cravings. She most definitely was not imaging the dreams… Every night they came, not sights but feelings. Warmth, noise, things crawling over her body, enveloping her. It so dark in them, only a dull red glow suffusing everything. But she welcomed it. While it happened it was the best sensation she could imagine and so familiar. But then she wold awake, awash in her own cold sweat. April was always there then, to hold her close and tell her she loved her. Hol was there too. Not sure what to say but at least there to try. She looked up as the door hissed open. April came in, wheeling a tray. She could smell the food one of Ellce's miracle creations. It smelled Itali-Greek. "Hey. Sweetling… thought you might be hungry."

"Seems like I'm always hungry these days…" Blink replied. "April, what's going on with me? I can't stop thinking about it, dreaming about it…" She sighed. "Well, bring on the chow, woman." She smiled slyly. "and food isn't all I'm hungry for…."

"You just get your rest." she tsked. "There's time for that later." Wheeling the tray beside the bed, she sat on the edge, running her fingers through Blink's hair. "Blink, its been confirmed. You are pregnant."

"Damn! What do I do about it? Do I keep it? Get rid of it? Is it even human?" Blink laid her head on April's shoulder. "I'm only 22, April. I'm not ready to be a mother……"

"I'm not sure what to tell you." April ran her hand over Blink's forehead, through her hair. "As a doctor its not my place to tell you what to do… as a person… I think life is sacred, all life. I can tell you this isn't a… normal pregnancy, not in the basic sense. I haven't enough data on the fetus to tell you anything concrete as of yet…"

"What's different about it? God, what is happening to me? I'll wait until you have the data you need, April, but then get rid of it. I don't care what the rules are, I didn't sign on for this."

"There seem to be some genetic anomalies and obviously its not the result of a typical conception." April replied as gently as she could but there was no way to play around this. "Blink, if you want we can terminate the pregnancy now. Its your body and you're decision."

"I can't do it, April. I can't be a mother, and this project and everything else. Genetic anomalies? God! It could be one of those… things… it could be anything at all… Do it, April. Make it go away, please?"

"All right, I'll help you as best I can." she stood after giving Blink a small kiss on the forehead. "just wait here." She returned after a moment with glass of water and a pill, offering both to Blink. "Here just take this."

Blink took the pill and water, then looked back at April. "If I do this, April, will you still love me?"

"You know I will." she took stroked Blink's hand gently. "Now and always."

Blink swallowed the pill, then drank the water. "Well, that's it then."

"Just lie down and get some rest." April kissed her on the forehead. "Everything will be fine."

"I hope so. I really do." Blink lay down on the bed, trying to relax. "I just wish I knew what was going on…"

"Just try and get some sleep, I'll be right outside." April said. "Call me if anything feels off kilter, all right?" April kissed her again, this time on the lips and headed for the door. She looked back at Blink, an inscrutable look in her eyes for a just a moment then she smiled and stepped out.

Blink lay in the dim light, waiting. She felt expectant, anxious. Her heart was pounding. She felt hot, a sticky warmth in her cheeks and neck.

What's going on here? Blink thought desperately. "Holly? April? Something's wrong! What's going on?"

"Blink? I'm calling Dr Martins, she coming. It must be a reaction to the drug. I'm trying to stabilize your vital signs." Holly said, a vague sense of panic starting to come across in her synthetic voice not that Blink was in much of a position to analyze it. A cramp knotted in her midsection. It felt like a fist was crushing her insides, screaming with pain she curled into a fetal ball.

Oh God! she thought. Make it stop someone please make it stop pleasepleaseplease… She screamed out incoherently in pain.

April rushed in, barking orders to Holly and pulling out the medi-comp. Blink was barely aware she was there, her world was a haze of delirium and pain. "I don't understand, her entire neural system…more like a seizure than a drug reaction. Blink, I'm administering a relaxant. Don't fight it. It might feel like your having trouble breathing but you'll be fine." April said, slipping into a professional mode, calm, steady but her hands shook as she administered the hypo.

Blink tried to listen, to relax. What's happening to me? What is this thing inside me? She tried to look at April, to see her face.

She was there, smiling, holding her, her beautiful face. Blink relaxed slowly, felt herself slipping away but she knew April would ne there for her. Darkness came…

When she awoke she was sore, tired but alive. or reasonable approximation of it anyway. Her mouth was so dry at first all she could make was a dry racking sound. April was at her side in an instant, offering her a small cup of water. "its all right, you're fine now… its going to be fine…" she whispered. leaning close.

"April? What happened? Everything hurt… Where am I?" She tried to sit up and look around.

She was still in the ISO Lab. April brushed back her hair, "Blink, there was a reaction… not to the drug but its effects. The fetus is… has connection to your nervous system. I don't really understand it, but attempting to terminate the pregnancy… it could kill you." by this time her voice had dropped to a pained whisper.

"So it isn't human. It can't be… Something from 'there' did this… it stuck in my body… came through with me… that's what was in my room… that Warp and I fought… Damn it! If it's one of those… things, April, we can't let it live. We can't… What am I going to do?"

"I don't know… I don't know…" April whispered. "Its not like that… creature… not externally I can tell you that much. Perhaps… perhaps its not something evil, Blink. It might be the only way it can reach into our world…"

"You don't know what it's like there, April. Cold, insane… you can taste colors and smell textures… the thing, or things there are claws and teeth… and tentacles, apparently. How do you think I ended up with this eye? And this arm? That's what those things there did to me. You couldn't know that, though…" Blink reached out and grabbed April, pulling her close. "If this thing thinks I'm going to take this laying down, it's got another think coming… What can we do now?"

"It's ok, April. I understand. But if it's as you say, the birth will kill me anyway, won't it? We can play wait and see, right now. But I don't know what's going to happen anymore than you do. What I want to do is have control over the end result. Can you understand that?"

"I… I don't think it will," she said, "the birth I mean… but yes, I understand."

"Good. Then we get back to as normal as can be. Keep this a secret, April. Drs. Morsham and Lee should know, but Holly shouldn't be allowed to tell anyone. No offense, Holly. This is more news than this new team needs right now. April, I need to interface with her. If it's possible. I need information, and there is only one place to look. And I'm the only one who knows how to get there. I'll need a cyberdeck, too." Blink seemed almost detached now, planning with almost manic intensity. "I may need you for something else, April. Well, maybe a couple of somethings…." Blink winked at her. "Will you help me?"

"I'll do what I can, Holly is Dr Lee's project though. I can't speak for him." April seemed somewhat relieved the subject had turned away from Blink's demise for the moment. She was planning, at least that meant she felt she had a future. "Blink, I think I should be honest with you as well. There is something about me… I'm… what in popular terms is called a "Genie", gene engineered like you." She smiled, a slight self- depreciating smile," I know you are as well… but I've just gotten so used to not telling people…"

"So you're a 'genie', huh? What's your point? April, you accept me with all these," she held up her arm, "enhancements. Did you feel like I had to know? I'm glad you told me. Now, can I get some new quarters? My old one is pretty trashed. I want to change clothes. And maybe something else." She winked at April.

"Not so fast, little ranger." April smiled slightly, all professional again. "I'm keeping you here in the ISO lab for awhile longer, where I can keep an eye on you" so saying she kissed Blink softly, stifling her complaints. "Just for a few more days until I'm certain about everything."

"A few more days? Well, I guess you'll just have to baby me, then. Well, I have something I want you to be certain of, April." Blink pulled her onto the bed with her, and kissed her deeply. "I love you, April. I'm glad you're helping me through this. Now, do I let you up or not?" she smiled.

"For now love," she smiled, kissed Blink's cheek, her lips. "Much as it tempts me…" she husked, eyes narrowed. "You're feeling up to that… you must be getting better, insatiable…" she kissed her again.

"Well, I have to keep a positive state of mind, right? And this is not going to beat me!" Whispering softly in April's ear, she said, "If you don't hurry up and finish, I'm going to tie you up and carry you somewhere that I can have my way with you." She sucked gently on April's earlobe, then nibbled softly at her neck. "Now go do what you have to do… I'll be waiting."

April laughed softly, breath caressing Blink's cheek. Her fingertips ran slowly along her jaw, down her neck to come to rest on Blink's breast, light and gentle through the filmy gown. Her smile grew sultry. "Nothing would please me more…here's something to think about." With that she brushed Blink's nipple with her fingers. The contact was instant but electric running from her breast to groin. Blink sighed softly, eyes half closing. How did she do that, know just where to touch…

Blink rested, listening to the sounds of the lab, to April as she moved around. Her hearing wasn't enhanced like her sight, but you didn't get as far as she had by not listening. What am I going to do about this thing inside me? What is it? I'll figure this out… no matter what. She concentrated on more pleasant thoughts. like a tied-up, naked April… much better! A small smile crossed her features as she waited for April to be done.