Star Blazers, Space Battleship Yamato, and all related names and elements are copyright © 1998 by Voyager Entertainment, Inc. and Leiji Matsumoto. Star Blazers is a registered trademark of Jupiter Films, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Nota Bene: This work of prose is inspired by the original North American Star Blazers series, and is also inspired by Uchu Senkan Yamato to a lesser degree. However, some events and character depictions may deviate from the accepted standard. This is a work of fanfiction by “Wicked Good Grrrl” (a.k.a. Andrea “Ande” Lyon) and is her property.
MERRY CHRISTMAS, MRS. WILDSTAR
Nova Blackwell rode in the back of a limousine on the way to Wildstar’s new house early on Christmas Eve. She was wearing a dark gray astrakhan swing coat and matching toque. Underneath she had on a spruce green velvet dress with a draped neck and a full skirt that hit her just below mid-calf. She’d dabbed Joy perfume just above the nape of her neck, where she liked to be kissed.
that day she’d received the dozen red roses that Wildstar had sent to her. The enclosed card read: I’m sorry I forgot to make reservations for the fried chicken
place. Dinner at my home, 1800, before
we meet your parents at Urakami. I love
you with all my heart. “
It was a running joke with them that Wildstar would always promise to take her out for fried chicken on Christmas Eve, fail to make reservations in time, apologize profusely then surprise her with dinner at a much better restaurant. The brilliance of the joke was that Wildstar gulled her each time so she expected to eat at Kentucky Fried on Christmas Eve (like hundreds of other Japanese across the nation). To date, the two of them had never eaten at one together, at any time of the year.
She suspected something was up, something special for this year. He had proposed to her on Yamato…sort of. They had been alone on the ship, and knew full well they were on a kamikaze mission against the Comet Empire. They had no hope of escaping the ship, and no hope of coming out of their attack alive. He held her as the weight of their oncoming death threatened to crush them as they stood. And then he’d said the magic words.
“You are going to marry me, aren’t you Nova?”
He’d said it so calmly, but she felt him shaking, his heart thrashing like a trip-hammer.
“Yes,” she’d replied, overjoyed and agonized at the same time. In her heart she had married him already, and was grief-stricken that their secret marriage could not include physical love as husband and wife, nor children, nor growing old together.
In the end they had survived, rescued by Trelaina. Earth began to recover and to realize its place in a frequently unfriendly universe…and since that time Wildstar had never broached the subject of marriage again.
Worse, Nova had time to think about Wildstar’s words. The knowledge he’d been terrified faded under the complete calm with which he’d spoken: so off-hand, as if it didn’t need her agreement.
It’s not like him to be arrogant, or to forget a promise. Maybe he feels bad about proposing under duress and wants to make it better, she wondered.
After what seemed an age, the driver pulled up outside Wildstar’s Japanese-style ranch house. It was within easy walking distance of the sea, though protected from all but the very worst monsoon. Nova and Wildstar had chosen the salt-resistant vegetables and flowers for the gardens. Nova had planted some of the flowers herself, and they were both delighted at the amounts of bees and butterflies that visited. Wildstar had also installed a wave pool for swimming, though he really preferred swimming out-of-doors. Nova liked to be able to swim all year round, and was accustomed to indoor pools. The house was close enough to the nearest city and rail lines, yet the growing military installment the house was built on was isolated enough to be private.
It was snowing gently that day, and accumulation, even close to the shore, was about two inches. There was a small Fuso van at the far side of the parking pad. Wildstar came to the main door of his house wearing a lush red shirt over a thin white sweater, good dark gray trousers and rubber gardening clogs. Nova smiled. She knew he wore red and white a lot, but especially when he was praying for good fortune. And she liked that white sweater, clinging as it did to him “like crazy”.
Wildstar crossed the parking pad, and bent to talk to the driver. Nova didn’t hear any of the conversation but saw that Wildstar passed the man a red envelope. Then Wildstar walked to Nova’s door and pretended to get snow in his shoe. Nova was tittering as he swung the door open and peered in at her. “Hi, Honey,” he said, extending his hand. She grasped it, held her arm swanwise, and stepped out daintily.
“Thank you for the roses, Derek,” she said as he kissed the back of her hand. “I love them!”
“I’m so glad.” He rapped on the roof of the car. As the driver pulled out, he walked her into his house.
Martin “Cookie” Tsai was in the kitchen stirring a pot and wiping down the counter and stovetop with a towel.
“Hi, Cookie!” Nova called to the Yamato former head chef as Wildstar helped her with her coat and hat. She sniffed the air. “It smells fabulous! What is it?”
couple of the Italian traditional Christmas ‘Seven Fishes’,” Cookie
replied. “There’s also a tortue (Canadian Christmas meat pie) in
the fridge for when you get home from
take us a couple days to get home from
Nova elbowed Wildstar playfully. To “Cookie”, she said, “It sounds lovely. Thank you for everything, Cookie.”
“The Captain even pitched in and made a nice loaf of bread,” Cookie added.
Wildstar looked embarrassed. “Cookie!” he half-scolded.
“I like your bread, Sweetie,” Nova protested, and gave Wildstar’s hand a squeeze. She knew that Wildstar often made bread when he was stressed, and she wondered what might be the reason.
“That baked fish in the oven will only take a little longer. I’ll find my way out.”
“Ah! Before you go,” Wildstar said, and handed him a red, gilded envelope. At the last minute, the two men exchanged a rough but affectionate hug.
“Arigato Goziemashite, Tsai-kun. Merry Christmas.”
“Arigato goziemashite, Kancho. And a very Merry Christmas to you, too.”
Cookie left soon after.
Wildstar turned to Nova. Alone at last, they grabbed each other in a big kiss and a bear hug. He craned his neck to take a deep inhale of the back of her neck. “Mmmmmm. The night we set the bedroom on fire.”
“You learned to not put out so many votive candles at one time.”
“I thought the smoke alarm would never stop.”
“Well, we got some comedy value out of running around, both of us buck-naked and waving wet towels at the detector.”
They both giggled at the memory. Nova daubed away the lipstick she’d smeared on him. “No matter how light a touch I think I have,” she teased.
“You’re just marking your territory,” Wildstar said waggishly. “Shall we go look at the tree or eat first?”
“Let’s look at the tree first!”
He linked arms with her and they walked in. “It’s a really great tree this year!”
The Christmas tree was hung here and there with a few Japanese folk ornaments, shrine talismans and toys they’d collected over the past several years, but was also covered with a preponderance of origami cranes and stars. Nova knelt to get a better look at the base and gasped at what she discovered. It was in a tub of potting soil and vermiculite.
“A live tree! Oh, Derek, are you going to plant this?”
“With any luck.” He knelt by her. “I’ll have to take it back to the nursery after Christmas so they can keep it warm for the rest of the winter. We’ll plant it when spring comes, and it’ll stay alive through next winter and many more to come, I hope.”
Wildstar smiled wordlessly and gazed at her softly.
They ate a helping apiece of a baby greens salad, the baked fish and frutti di mare and some of Wildstar’s still-warm Italian bread. Then Wildstar and Nova went back out to his living room and sat under the tree to drink strong cappuccino.
“Sorry I couldn’t take you out for fried chicken this year, either,” he said.
Nova gave him a light, playful shove. “Oh, you.”
Wildstar finished his cappuccino in a gulp. “Sweetie,” he began, “There is something I would like to apologize, for real. I…proposed something under the worst conditions possible. Moreover, what I asked you…umm…didn’t come out quite right.”
Nova’s eyes took on a misty gleam. She squeezed his hand hard. The lump in her throat was so large and hard she could do little more than mouth it’s OK.
“Oh, Nova-chan! Gomen nasai! Gomen nasai!” he cried as he scooped her up in his arms and began to rock her.
Minutes later she lifted her head and laughed quietly. “How puffy are my eyes?”
He took her face gently in both his hands and wiped tears off her face with the pads of his thumbs, windshield-wiper fashion. “You’re beautiful, Nova. Do you want to go get some cold water?”
“I’ll keep. Honestly, I’m OK.” She ran the back of one finger up his cheek. “You’re leaking a little, too.”
Wildstar began again. “When I we were on Iscandar, and until we got out of radio range, I spent a lot of time talking with my brother, trying to get the old family stories he knew before they were gone from me forever. There was one he couldn’t quite remember, that either our parents got married under a tree, or that our father simply proposed to our mother under the same tree. I like both versions of the story, and I hope, maybe, it could become a tradition that Wildstars through the ages might honor a tree kami to witness…”
He had palmed a small wooden puzzle-box off the tree and handed it to Nova. He was shaking. Nova was shaking as badly when she removed some key pieces and got to what was hidden inside. She gasped.
Wildstar had backed up a little, walked on his shins until he had enough clearance to bow to her. And bow he did, like a samurai in front of his most-revered liege, very low and with his fingertips placed neatly and closely.
“My most beloved “Snowy”-chan. Would you marry me…”
Nova’s mouth fell open and she let out a squeak, speech having momentarily failed her.
She had to force herself to breathe. “Yes!” Nova bent over and kissed Wildstar on the lips before he could come out of his bow.
They fumbled the ring on to Nova’s finger after several tries, for they were still shaking. Then they clung to each other until their trembling had quieted.
“How long had you planned this?” Nova asked, her mouth muffled in Wildstar’s shoulder.
“Ever since I asked you on Yamato. You absolutely deserved the most wonderful proposal after that debacle.”
“I felt like such a dope after…” He did a crude parody of his own voice. “`You are going to marry me, aren’t you?’ Sheesh!”
Dee, my poor, sweet
She held his chin and tipped his face to hers. Nova kissed him and had the favor amply returned.
“I love this ring, Derek, it’s gorgeous.”
“Alex palmed the original diamond to me on Iscandar. I don’t think Starsha would have minded if she knew, but she was always funny about certain things and lifting artifacts or natural resources, he said…”
She smiled at him impishly, confidently. “You know what would really make this night perfect?”
“Blowing off Mass to make love all night long?”
“Making love, yes. But doing it fast enough so we can still show up at Mass…”
She playfully forced him to the floor. “…ever so slightly rumpled and smelling like sex.”
Wildstar considered. “Don’t you want to strip down down? Hit the bed?”
Nova was wiggling out of her underpants. “Mmmm, I think we could add a kinky twist to that Wildstar family tradition. How else are we going to get slightly rumpled?”
“Oh, Honey, that’s such a nice dress I don’t want to…”
Nova had unlatched his belt buckle and had just unzipped his pants.
“…stain it!” he quailed, his voice suddenly an octave higher.
“It’ll clean up OK, promise. Besides…”
She kicked her right leg over him as if she was getting on a horse. “…I’ll drive!”
Wildstar groaned appreciatively. “Just…before we lose our heads?”
“Merry Christmas, Mrs. Wildstar.”
“Merry Christmas, Mr. Wildstar.”
Wildstar thought a moment. “Umm…not that I think you should change your name…”
“Or you retire from the military,” Nova replied.
“Touché,” Wildstar agreed.