Holy Gaia Hypothesis! The unknown planet is a living entity, its biosphere awash in sex hormones, one planetary consciousness radiating its arousal across space. The spaceship Magellan, chartered by religious fundamentalist Josiah Wenlock III, on its way to colonise a new world, is pulled inexorably off course for a climactic meeting with the planet dubbed "Aphrodisia" by the ship's science officer. This officer is the only man who can keep his head as the bisexual captain, the rest of the crew, and Wenlock's repressed "flock" are overwhelmed by Aphrodisia's influence, as the ship draws toward her bosom. For she has the power to reignite half-buried memories and unsatiated desires, turning fantasies into alluring flesh and blood and shattering inhibitions. But what does Aphrodisia really want? And how can the voyagers escape entrapment, if indeed they even want to flee the paradise of sexual fulfilment she offers?
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His senses awoke in the wash of a warm sea. His heart was pounding like a swimmer breasting its dark waves: waves whose regular metronomic current he could feel surging through his limbs. With each drum-beat of his heart they surged in increasing intensity. Acute pleasure poured through him as he penetrated the warmth and was himself penetrated. Then the sense of parting narrowed down, concentrated itself below his waist where he was pushing rhythmically, his whole body behind each push. The dark grew light, as if a bloody setting sun were rising in reverse. With it, sound dawned on his ears: the sound of his motion, the sound of his heart, of his quick, gasping breath; and the responding motion, the quick, responding breath of the thing he penetrated.
Light hit him in a flood, and out of the dazzle blonde hair; a girl’s beautiful face, the mouth wide open, the eyes rolled back; breasts shaking with his motion deep within her. He felt her fingers squeeze the hard shaft ramming her hot, acute wetness, her head knocking out her breath, her breath hot pellets of Morse Code. She squeezed him tight and he came … awake.
He lay in his hibernation pod: naked, alone but for the soft light, warm as a hand, upon his erection that lay pulsing like a silent alarm against his abdomen.
‘Cock-a-doodle-do. Nice. Wish I had somewhere to stick it. Pity these hiber-pods don’t allow you to bunk up with someone.’
He sounded more casual than he felt. The air was charged with the presence of the blonde girl he’d been having such intense dream-sex with just a moment ago. She was a girl he knew but would never see again. A girl he’d stupidly never even spoken to, back on Europa – 30 lights years away in Earth’s solar system and more than five years in the past. All he had of her was a name: Belea.
‘You awake, Hayward? Oh, I can see you are – sorry, I’ll switch off visual.’
The unmartial tones of Captain Lucia Stepankova reverberated through the pod. It was at least something, a feminine voice. He slipped his fingers round the shaft of his cock and cradled its head.
‘Hello, Hayward here. Yes, I’m awake; forgot to put the pyjamas on – apologies. Have we arrived?’
‘What do you mean, “not quite”?’
‘I’ll explain when you get up here.’
‘Is it bad?’
He wanted her to keep talking. When he closed his eyes he could see her thick, soft, red lips moving. Her breath was like breakfast to the big, dumb, hungry brute in his hand.
‘No, I don’t think so … I hope not.’
‘Can’t you just spit it out?’
He lay, eyes closed, relishing the lingering effect of each of her syllables.
‘No, I can’t. Will you get up here or do I have to pull rank?’
‘What was that you said? Pull what? We have a weak link …’
‘Get up here, Hayward – now!’