Lexx took off his coat, carefully folded it and laid it on a large rock, then did the same with his shirt. “Wimps! You won’t drown and it’s good exercise. Chel, come here.”

Chel looked at Lexx reproachfully, wondering what he had in mind. She hadn’t planned on going swimming and a flicker of distrust due to a childhood filled with boys and young men tricking girls into being thrown into large pools of water, flared through her. “I didn’t bring a swimsuit and I don’t want to get my clothes wet!”

“You won’t.” Lexx reassured her, starting down the bank. “Bring the fluff balls with you … and Zeta…” The sallomandyr spun around and ran past Lexx, first looking like he was going to run into the water, and then completely losing it and turning with a yelp. “Come back here!”

Zeta froze in his tracks, not turning this time, but merely lowering his head and looking back at Lexx. “Big water try eat Zeta! See Big Mouth!” He hopped sideways as a wave crashed onto the rocks nearby with a bit more force than the ones further down the beach.