Log Entry 170828.210

T'Roc and I were up early, preparing for yet another day on Dirria. Arunga was still curled up lazily in the warmth of the bedclothes with only his little purry snores giving away his presence. Sharing a bed with Arunga was just like sleeping with Beastie. He would stretch and writhe in pleasure during his sleep, often pushing his big, fluffy paws against me, occasionally letting out a silent meow.
T'Roc was reading a datapad as she sipped her tea and I was putting my boots, when I caught sight of her smirking.
"What?" I demanded.
"Nothing," she said, taking another unnaturally delicate sip from the cup.
"Yes, there is. You're grinning at something."
Still smirking, she put her cup down and leaned forward to be sure that Arunga couldn't hear her.
"Well, if you must know," she whispered, "I was just musing about … you know," and she left the words hanging in the air.
"I know … what?"
T'Roc tipped her head towards Arunga. She was teasing me, but I couldn't quite see how. I took the bait shamelessly.
"What?" I hissed at her.
"How to write this one up? What do I say in my report?"
My brow furrowed in confusion.
"What do you mean?"
T'Roc grinned even harder, evil glinting in her eye. She leaned closer to me and whispered, "I've never had to report one of my officers for behaviour unbecoming before."
Horror filled me. What behaviour? What had I done? My mouth worked open and shut like a goldfish, but no words emerged. T'Roc giggled.
"Sleeping with the king!" she whispered.
The words out, she immediately leaned back in her chair and took another innocent sip of her tea.
"It's not like that at all!" I hissed, but T'Roc only laughed all the more.
"Shame on you!" she tutted.
T'Roc can be a rotten tease.

Log Entry 170424.209

An eventless day and for that I think we should be thankful. While Honka remained outwardly polite and courteous towards Arunga, it is obvious that he has little but contempt for him. Sadly, Arunga was not oblivious to it so at the end of the day we chatted quite openly about it in our rooms.
We had all gathered there before bed, primarily to compare notes but also to chill. It's quite tiring, fawning over people and feigning politeness in the way that Honka demands, so the opportunity to relax and unwind was welcomed by us all.
"So if Honka is the High Emperor, who is the Low Emperor?" Arunga suddenly asked.
Traeth explained that in ancient times (again, no idea when 'ancient' was), the country had been divided into the High Region and the Low Region. However, either due to a marriage of the two families or a war (no one could decide which because the Dirrians have never recorded their history), there was now only the High Emperor. I can't say that fact was particularly interesting, but the lack of recorded history was very intriguing.
On Earth we say that history is written by the victors. On Dirria, history is apparently written by the old wenches that feel compelled to tell it to their grandchildren. Such stories are filled with embellishments to entertain or terrorise the young (just as we do with our children), so tales often contradict each other; the truth is very ambiguous at best.
Traeth began to tell us some of the stories that were told to him as a child. Just like our own histories, his tales were filled with kings and queens, princes and princesses. There were rogues and heroes, the kind and the cruel. There were also tales of adultery and murder among the Emperors through the ages, so I suppose the Dirrians are not that different to Terrans after all.
I asked Traeth where he thought the current emperor would fit into Dirrian history. Would he be remembered as a good emperor I asked?
Traeth's eyes suddenly widened and his whole demeanour changed. He glared uncomfortably at me.
"Oh, definitely one of the better ones!" he said, but his eyes spoke differently. He tapped his ear with one hand and swept his finger across his chin with the other, pointing most discretely towards the window. We all realised what he was saying, and a faint shadow passing across the balcony confirmed it. Someone was listening.
Our conversation became stilted and dull, and we quickly feigned tiredness and a need to retire to our beds. We went inside, shutting the windows behind us and began to chat hurriedly. I was worried about listening devices but Traeth assured us we had no need to be. The Dirrians weren't that sophisticated or technologically advanced. In future, though, our conversations will be taking place in hushed tones, our doors and windows closed tightly against the outside world.

Log Entry 170325.208

The evening passed painfully slowly but thankfully without incident. Eventually, and to our immense relief, it drew to a close and we were shown to our rooms. It was the same one we had been in before but with the addition of a pet bed. I found that to be yet another insult upon Arunga and I felt fresh rage. Arunga said he didn't mind, but I sensed his deep unhappiness. He wasn't enjoying this visit at all.
We chatted for a while and then settled into our beds, but I couldn't sleep. I could hear Arunga turning in his, and Celia's words echoed through my mind.
"I can't sleep," I suddenly declared, artificially loudly.
Arunga stopped trying to organise his blankets that stubbornly wouldn't shift.
"Not used to a foreign bed?" he grumbled.
"It's more than that. I'm not used to sleeping alone. Usually I have Beastie beside me." I paused for effect. "I wonder …" I asked slowly. "Would you curl up with me, Arunga?"
The words had barely left my mouth before I felt the thud of his paws landing on the bed by my feet, and the familiar sensation of a cat running up the bedclothes. I pulled the covers back and he snuggled beneath them with me. His loud, contented purr thrummed against my chest, and it wasn't long before we both fell into a deep slumber.