Chapter 2 - Sunshine in an Icy Land.
When I woke, I saw her face over me, and her hair hanging down.
"This isn't real, is it?" she asked between kisses.
I said that it was.
She shook her head. "No! And you aren't real either," she added.
I nodded to that. "I am a traveler from a place far away," I said. "I was born on Gamma Point Eight of the Alpha Centauri system."
"What?" she grinned. "But go on!"
"Alpha Centauri is 4.3 light years distant from the earth towards the morning star on a mid-December day. It has three suns, locked together in a gravitational bond. One is very large and immensely bright, the other is more orange in color, and the third, the smallest of the three suns is the coldest, it glows a bright red. You might name the three suns Alpha, Beta, and Gamma. And the Point Eight," I explained, "indicates that my planet's relative gravity is eight tenth that of the earth."
I stroked her hair gently while we talked. A faint morning glow was on the horizon, outside.
"Can you imagine three suns in the sky?" I asked her. "Alpha looks sometimes blue from Gamma Point Eight. And as the day changes, the light shifts to orange and later to red. Gamma Point Eight also has seven moons. It is without doubt the most romantic planet in the universe."
I talked to her, looking deep into her eyes.
"On Gamma Point Eight the air changes daily from misty morning hues that become intensely bright like a snowstorm at mid day. Then the weather clears when the orange sun comes up, followed by the red one and three brightly glowing moons. It's a planet for lovers," I said. "We make love there all the time."
"And now you are come to teach me," she interrupted.
"Teach!" I repeated, "I don't like the word, teaching. The concept of teaching has become distorted. The teacher to student relationship has become a hierarchical one in the world, in which one person is assumed to be greater than another, while it really should be a lateral relationship where everyone is equal. I would never suggest that there is anyone greater among us. I rather think that we are both perfectly complete and equal."
She didn't answer to that.
We cuddled up to each other again in a caressing embrace. We almost missed breakfast, too.
Breakfast was served at the top floor of the hotel with a view away from the airport but open to the morning sun. There were no blinds to block the sunshine. The sun was welcome there.
The place wasn't at par with the New York Hilton, of course, but who cared? There was plenty of freshly baked bread, butter, and several kinds of preserves. Even the coffee tasted like coffee. Could one ask for more? Everything was perfect, and much of it, no doubt, appeared that way simply because Anton was there with me. Her love, her smiles, her gentle gestures of caring, altogether shone brighter than the sun, and the night that we had shared added to this brightness. Nicolai's generosity, too, added to this wonderful light that had begun to envelop us, that made us feel secure.
I had to confess to Anton that I had felt like a traitor the night before, for a brief moment.
She smiled across the table, "you mustn't feel like that. In fact we must make an effort to keep on being as close to each other as we were in Caracas and in Queensland, and this in every possible way, including sex. The privatization of sex has ended. That door is closed. Nicolai knows this as well as we do. I don't ever want to loose us being as close to one another as we are now. It means too much to me. You are my heart and in my soul, just as you had said about me when we first met, which I didn't understand. So you must never feel like that ever again, Peter. Also, there really is no cause why you should feel that way. Nicolai knows that I would never be married to him behind a tiny wedding ring. He is a human being, you know. He knows that sexual interaction is a part of being alive, a part of the passion for living. We are all sexual beings and wouldn't exist without sex. But we are also human beings, with a wonderful mind, so that sex means an a whole world more. It's a powerful thing. Nicolai understands that. He respects that. And besides that, why should you feel like a traitor anyway? Nothing happened, or could have happened, that violated the principle of universal love. Our being together in Caracas hadn't established anything that hadn't already existed before. We merely opened our eyes to it. The principles that we acknowledged there and in Queensland, still apply today as they did then. Nor do these universal principles change in any respect with Nicolai coming more fully onto the scene."
She asked moments later, "What would your friend Helen say?"
"I think Helen would say: What have these little things got to do with anything?" I replied and laughed. "Do they change the principle involved or invalidate it? That's what she would ask."
"Universal principles don't change with the winds of circumstances," Anton replied in acknowledgement. "To be honest, I enjoyed being treated by you like a woman, and always will, and this for more than one reason. The truth is, I can fully understand your appreciation of women as I had been able to experience that myself."
"You, in Caracas?"
"Of course, in Caracas. Remember, you said yourself that we must always go forward. And Peter, Sylvia is such a beautiful person in every respect, not just physically. I can appreciate why you fell in love with her, and with Heather, also. I can appreciate why you are fascinated with the beautiful female nature of women, because I am, too. And why shouldn't we be? It is a part of our humanity to appreciate the beauty of one another, just like a gardener appreciates the beauty of a rose. Only we have it in our heart to do this much more so in respect one another; because we are infinitely more beautiful and complex, and worthwhile than any rose."
"We really did open the door to a new world in Caracas," I replied, smiling, "and we stepped through it into this new world, and in Queensland we moved forward. Heh, didn't I promise you that night in Caracas, that something like that would happen as you asked the question, 'Where do we go from here?'"
"It also looks like that the sexual aspect isn't the main part of it either, not by a long shot," said Anton. "It somehow unfolds in the stream of things as barriers fall all around us, and boundaries vanish, as we are becoming closer to one another. It also seems to me that one can't just jump from A to Z in a single bound in real life. It's like your dream of the four rivers where you couldn't get past the draw gate of the first river unless you cycle through all of them and become a more complete individual. As the gatekeeper warned you, if you jump the gate you cannot survive in the more challenging environment that you'll be in. Isn't that what the gate keepers have told you over and over?"
"I must have known this, to have dreamed it," I replied, "even though I didn't understand then why it is so. Maybe it was my relationship with you that inspired the dream in the first place, considering the care I had to take to build a foundation for every step forward."
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