"Huhn?" He had almost been asleep.
"I said, why me? I mean, Arkady Nikelyovich, you could have loved any of the women here, and they would have loved you back. You could have had Maya if you wanted."
He snorted. "I could have had Maya! Oh my! I could have had the joy of Maya Katarina! Just like Frank and John!" He snorted, and they both laughed out loud. "How could I have passon on such joy! Silly me!" He giggled until she punched him.
"All right, all right. One of the others then, the beautiful ones, Janet or Ursula or Samantha."
"Come on," he said. He propped himself up on an elbow to look at her. "You really don't know what beauty is, do you?"
"I certainly do," Nadia said mulishly.
Arkady ignored her and said, "Beauty if power and elegance, right action, form fitting function, intelligence and reasonability. And very often," he grinned and pushed at her belly, "expressed in curves."
"Curves I've got," Nadia said, pushing his hand away.
He leaned forward and tried to bite her breast, but she dodged him.
"Beauty is what you are, Nadezhda Francine. By these criteria you are queen of Mars."
"Princess of Mars," she corrected absently, thinking it over.
"Yes, that's right. Nadezhda Francine Cherneshevsky, the nine-fingered Princess of Mars."
"You're not a conventional man."
"No!" He hooted. "I never claimed to be! Except before certain selection committees of course. A conventional man! Ah, ha ha ha ha ha! - the conventional men get Maya. That is their reward." And he laughed like a wild man.
-- Kim Stanley Robinson, Red Mars