Chapter 17.2

From: Thomas Castle
Subject: New Year’s news
Date: Taurus 12, 0031 12:03
To: Tyler Cody

(CLT): 10 min 29.57 sec

Hey Ty. Happy New Year from planet Mars. Congrats on the promotion and new mission assignment. Bran shared the news with all of us, just a few moments ago. Well, I guess that changes my plans… I was intending to ask you to be my best man when we get home. But, just about the time we’re getting back to the ranch, you’ll be arriving here. What a hoot!!

Yeah, Sally and I are getting married. I popped the question last night and she said yes. I’m one lucky guy to be able to marry a girl like Sally. After Penny died, I never thought I could love another woman. I don’t have a ring yet, but you should see the pretty little stone I’ve picked out. Ha, ha. Come to think of it, you have seen it. It’s the rock I was holding on day two, when we were sipping Champaign last month. I figure the band will have to fit over her head so she can wear it as a necklace. It’s way too big for a ring. : }

Everyone up here knows about the upcoming nuptials and they are OK with it. In fact, Brandon helped us set up private quarters in the Mars Ascent Vehicle. As an apartment, it’s a bit cramped, but at least we can have our privacy.

Of course, all of this isn’t just for us. Sally and I talked about it and decided we could try to keep our relationship a secret, or be open about it. But, we felt any PDA’s (public displays of affection) wouldn’t be fair to the rest of the crew, since none of them are having the same sort of intimacy… so far as we know, at least. ; }

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