The Female turned herself slowly, tuning in to the clicking message that resounded toward her.
Him. Near. Joy.
Rolling her weightless girth in his direction, she offered him the panorama of her gravid womb.
Fulfilled . . . alive . . . readying.
His streaming clangs arced through the water, the deep sounds a reminder of his penetrating power. Then his rapid-fire clicks struck the immensity of her belly, delicate probings that stroked the pinked, pulsing membranes of her uterus . . . the personal echo-location for which she’d yearned and waited.
He perceives. He knows. He feels. Mine. His. Ours.
An ultrasound picture now forming in his mind would reveal to him what she, herself, longed to see . . . the gender and weight, the position and snugness, the press toward delivery.
It came, then, the sound-image she’d carry always, a perfection of perpetuation, his next gift to his mate. She rolled again, catching sight of him.
Close. Breathing soon.
She fixed a tender eye on his for a lingering moment, then swam a circle around his length, sharing the deep joy only they would know.
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