I've been going back through my sci-fi series re-reading the earlier novels with an eye on both editing them for publication and re-familiarizing myself with the world so I can finish book 6. The following is one of my favorite scenes. Emmelia Spenser, Chairman of the Mining Guild, is the most powerful woman in the galaxy. In "The Lone Wolf", she's guarded by Captain Ben Drexel of the Galactic Marines. Why isn't important. What is important is the fact that they fall in love. However, given their positions, they aren't able to put duty aside to be together. Ben is sent on a mission far from the Mining Guild home base and Emmelia can't go with him. She doesn't hear from him for over three years, but as it's Christmas Eve, she's thinking of him.
Gazing at the clock on her living room wall, Chairman Emmelia Spenser watched the hands creep toward midnight. Drinking a silent toast to absent friends, she tried not to cry.
"Oh, Ben," she whispered to the air, "Where are you tonight and what are you doing? Are you thinking of me as I think of you?"
She rose, walking to the window of her penthouse apartment, high on top of the Guild Tower. Tonight she'd been obligated by her position, to host a lavish, expensive party for all the somebodies in the Mining Guild and associated riffraff.
She'd been the perfect hostess, she always was, paying extravagant and insincere compliments to the hideous wife of the head of the Miner's Consortium. All the while harboring unkind thoughts that the woman looked more like a troll than a lady of wealth and substance.
All the board members had been present, of course, their trophy wives in tow. She couldn't keep track of them any more. They all looked alike: blonde from a bottle, boobs by design, pouty lips, long legs and tiny little brains. They dripped furs, jewels, gold, platinum and other choice tidbits given them by their husbands. Usually, there was a new one every other year, and they all had names like Buffy or Tippy or Missy.
She had not been alone at her party, of course. There were any number of eligible men willing to escort the most powerful woman in the Mining Guild to a posh soirée. The one tonight had been better than most, smarter, handsomer, better put together, but he wasn't Ben.
He'd made the expected advances. She'd repulsed them until she had too much champagne to drown her sorrows, then she foolishly gave in. He hadn't been a complete disappointment, but he wasn't Ben. Without that shadow to compete with, Brett might have stood a chance. He was several cuts above the average hanger on, but he had to compete with a memory, although he didn't know it. She'd hoped that Ben would be back by now, or at the very least she would hear from him. But nothing had come.
"Tomorrow," she thought hopefully, "tomorrow I will hear from Ben."
A final sip of champagne and she made her way to bed, where Brett slept, looking for all the world like a child. She wondered how old he really was, 25, 26? Did it matter? He kept the bed warm, didn't drool, and didn't snore. Slipping quietly back into bed, she curled up next to him, facing the door, crying gently.
He must have sensed her presence, perhaps even heard her crying. He rolled over, putting his arm protectively around her, cuddling up behind her, breath warm on her neck. Tears fell anew, remembering how Ben would do the same thing.
"Tomorrow," she thought as she fell asleep, "Tomorrow..."