NCC - 86105
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Blast from the Past

Posted on Tue Jan 8th, 2019 @ 9:33pm by Lieutenant Commander Torhild Jessen & Lieutenant Commander Halcyon Attixx

Mission: The Sincerest Form of Flattery
Location: Promenade

Tori sat in the coffee shop on the promenade, a tall chai latte in her hand as she found herself wondering how the hell it was that she had even gotten into this position... not that she was even really sure what 'position' this was that she was in. Kind of some kind of weird cross between having coffee with a friend, sitting with a random stranger in the coffee shop and some very awkward blind date that her sitter had arranged for her.

Hiding a yawn behind her cup, she forced a smile on her face and nodded, even though she had no idea at all what it was that she was nodding about.

"Sorry," Tori offered apologetically. "It was a late night with my daughter."

John scoffed somewhat. (Was that even his name? John? Or was it Shaun? Maybe it was Tom? She really couldn't actually remember.) "Precisely why I don't want any," he announced with an air of superiority. "Bothersome little brats that offer no real benefit to society."

Raising one eyebrow slightly, Tori drew in a sharp breath, resisting the urge to reach out right now and just punch him in the nose. "Well, I don't think that's very fair," she murmured softly. "After all, children grow up to become adults."

He rolled his eyes at her remark and immediately changed the subject again, rambling on about something, she really had no idea what, and at that point as she stared out blankly over the promenade in front of them, she didn't really care.

Halcyon stepped off the lift onto the second level of the promenade and looked around, eyes wide. He could feel the hum of emotions from the place, but that was because there were just so many people around. He shook his head as he started walking towards one of the few shops that seemed to have that most wonderful of concoctions: Coffee. Now he understood part of the look that the shuttle crew had given him when they'd dropped him off at the docking port.

"Mocha latte." He said to the tender, then slid over the (expected) exorbitant amount of latinum, then cupped the blessed caffeine in his hands and scanned the room, eyes flitting over each of the customers until his eyes fell on a bored-looking woman with another guy and moved on, then came back. "Oh my God..." He put down his cup, then thought better and grabbed it again.

He took a few seconds to weave around a couple tables, "Torhild? Is that actually you?"

Tori held her chai in one hand, her head tilting slightly to one side as she cast a curious glance over the newcomer. He was clearly just off the shuttle, he had that wide eyed, slightly alarmed expression on his face that she recognized all too well, probably because she had just recently been in the same position.

Finally recognition dawned on her face as she smiled, standing up and not even bothering to excuse herself from the disaster that was going on at the table. "Hal?" she asked incredulously. "Oh my goodness, wow, you look just the same as I remember. How many years has it been now?" She laughed before following up with "Seriously, don't actually answer that, I really don't need a reminder of how old I am!"

Hal laughed, noting that she ignored her 'companion' and decided to do the same, "It's definitely been a while, the Academy oh those what? Two months ago?" He winked at her, "It has been far too long, though and I..." He shook his head, not finishing that, when he'd basically run away from her instead of following through on a desire. Sure, they'd kept in casual touch for a couple-three years, but that petered out.

Instinctively, Tori laughed as she leaned in, hugging him with one arm, still holding her chai in the other hand. "It's good to see you. Do you want to join us, I'm sure John won't mind."

Her companion cast a scathing look and sullenly replied with. "It's Paul, and we were in the middle of something," he said with a pointed glare at Hal.

"Oh, we can get back to that later, sit..." she motioned for him to join them. "Tell me, how have you been. How is... oh, what's her name... wasn't it Charlotte you were dating when we graduated? She was planning your wedding if I recalled correctly, was it as perfect as she anticipated?"

"Thaaat didn't last long." Hal grimaced as he ignored Jerry, James, whoever it was as he sat down, "We never did get married, because she found Bernard from the science department and suddenly stopped her planning and spent less and less time with me until she finally decided to move in with him instead." He shrugged, "Not the smartest move I made that's for sure. You know, I'm still shocked you never dated more at the Academy, I know there were a dozen guys who would have loved to have been with you."

Tori grimaced. "What can I say, I was committed to my studies." She laughed and shook her head. "Besides, I'm quite sure that number is nothing but a fabrication at best, a gross exaggeration at least." She sipped her chai for a moment and shook her head. "Wow, so Charlotte ran off with some guy from Science huh? Bernard? Was that Bernard Epstein? The one in my graduating class?"

"He was in your class?" Halcyon asked rhetorically, "Well, unless there was another Bernard Epstein, that's him." He shook his head, mind adding 'I would have dated you...' But not coming out of him, taking a sip of his mocha, "Arrogant asshole, but she saw something in him, or at least in his possessions, because she was always talking about his collection of antique vases. They did get married, about a year after we got onto Nibelheim. What about you? Anyone special show up at some point?"

Tori's eyes darkened ever so slightly just momentarily. "No, no one special like that," she said quietly before drawing in a deep breath and forcing another smile onto her face.

Pushing his chair noisily away from the table, Paul harrumphed before setting his coffee cup down noisily. "Well, I guess I'll leave you two to catch up then. Torhild, may I call on you this evening? Say, around twenty hundred hours?"

Tori shook her head quickly. "Sorry, I have plans tonight, and for the next few nights actually, but maybe some other time. Thank you for the latte, it really has been quite an... uhmmm... interesting? experience?" She smiled politely momentarily before turning back to Hal.

"Really? Antique vases?" She laughed openly. "You know, I can see that in him. To be honest, I always thought he was a rather droll sort... he was always droning on about some nonsense that no one else cared about."

"I really wouldn't know, I avoided him like the plague. Thankfully he never came down to engineering." He patted the table, "Oh, that reminds me, I'm not in engineering anymore! Operations decided that they liked my computer skills and dragged me kicking and screaming about eight years ago. It turns out I'm rather decent at keeping things running smoothly, better than all that wrenching and repair work I was doing before."

"Well there you go!" Tori shook her head and laughed. "I always suspected you wouldn't stay in Engineering. I, on the other hand, am still very firmly entrenched in sciences. It's actually why I'm here. I just arrived last week as Chief Science Officer. It's been... well..." she cast a quick glance over the promenade again. "It's been interesting so far. But I'm sure you'll see that in your own time."

"I'm already seeing it... You know, they never told me anything about what was going on here, they just said they needed someone who could handle a crisis and didn't have a problem in enclosed spaces. I didn't expect... This." Halcyon gestured widely, "This is chaos."

"You haven't seen anything yet, seriously..." She shook her head as she continued to watch the parade of individuals milling around. "Makes you realize how incredibly lucky we truly are. There but for the grace of God... if it wasn't for circumstance or accident of birth, we could be down there in tent city. How difficult would it be to just suddenly have lost everything you have ever known. Your home, your family, everything. The station is over crowded, there is not enough of anything to go around, resources are strained to the limit, criminal behaviors are on the rise, simply because of lack of alternatives... and that's just with the refugees. The war adds a whole extra element of chaos to the whole situation. Oh, and what ever you do, make sure you ever, ever speak the 'R' word outloud," she leaned toward him, lowering her voice to the barest of whispers. "The 'R' word sends Klingons everywhere into violent frenzies, it's actually a little scary!"

“The R word? Refugees? Ohhh, you mean Rom-“ He cut off for the barest moment as he felt the room start to turn its attention, “ance? Why would the Klingons not like romance? Besides that it isn’t in their nature.” He flushed a slight red as Hal realized he almost just screwed up big time. “But why do I get this feeling I’m going to become frenemies with Engineering over station power resources?”

"Engineering... medical... security... science... everyone's going to want a piece of you..." Realising the potential faux pas in her words, she quickly corrected herself. "I mean, everyone's going to want your power resourcing abilities. There's just not really enough to go around anywhere. I'm sure it will get better. Some of the refugee's have already started being resettled in other places, and I think once everyone adjusts to the new restrictions it will get at least somewhat easier. If anyone can do it, I'm sure you can," she finished with a smile.

“My reputation that has come ahead of me came awful fast if my assignment was as ‘urgent’ as the orders that cut me to over here... And is totally overrated.” Hal’s lips turned up in a smile at her faux pas, “But I’ll start taking bribes as soon as I unpack!” He winked at her at his joke.

Tori laughed, shaking her head. "You really haven't changed at all," she said with a smile. She was about to speak again when her commbadge chirped, a cascade of sounds, almost like chimes. "Oh damn," she muttered. "That's my alarm, I have a commitment I need to take care of..." She finished her chai and set her cup down on the table. "But it's real good to see you again Hal, it really is," she said with a smile filled with genuine warmth.

Halcyon set his own cup down and rose when she did, “It’s great to see you again too, you are going to have to tell me all about what you’ve been up to all these years, I’ll even share a few tidbits about mine if you want. And if Larry there,” He tossed a thumb over his shoulder in the vague direction of her ‘date’ isn’t going to see you at eight, would you allow me to treat you to dinner?”

Standing up, Tori hesitated visibly at his request. After a heartbeat or two she finally nodded. "Alright, but come to my quarters. The replicator does a decent General Tso's and it will be quieter than the obvious chaos around here," she finished with a smile.

“Chinese? You do know a way to a man’s heart.” Hal winked at her, “I don’t think you would have remembered it was always my favorite.”

Tori laughed. "We ate it almost every night for how many weeks? After we graduated I didn't touch it for, well, must have been years, but now I don't mind it, every now and then. Definitely not every night though!"

"Charlotte decided she wanted to break me of the habit herself, so I went a good few months without it and I went into withdrawals!" Hal laughed, "So I've tried to make up for it."

Tori laughed and shook her head. "Well, she always thought she was too good for us peasants who dined in the mess and ate from the replicators. Do you remember that trip we all took to the beach over break? When she realized we were going to be sleeping on the sand? I thought she was going to have a heart attack then and there!" She laughed openly and shook her head. "On second thought, don't answer that, if we start talking about that trip I'll never get out of here and I'm already late."

Hal laughed, "I don't even know what she saw in me anyways! But eight? I'll be there." He smiled at her.

She nodded, leaning in to give him one more quick hug. "I'll see you then," she said with a smile before disappearing out of the coffee shop.

He reached down blindly as he watched her go, grabbing for his cup of mocha, then looked down as he realized it was gone, taken by the apparently efficient waiter, who was making off back towards the bar, "Hey, wait, I wasn't done with that!"

The waiter turned back, a big shit-eating grin on his face, "Four slips to get it back."


=/\=

Lieutenant Commander Halcyon Attixx
Chief Operations Officer
Starbase Versailles

Lieutenant Commander Torhild Jessen
Chief Science Officer
Starbase Versailles

 

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