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Topic: Day 05 [0900 hrs.] New Old Faces (Read 153 times) previous topic - next topic

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Day 05 [0900 hrs.] New Old Faces
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Conference Lounge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @trevorvw
[Show/Hide]Cross sat in his usual chair in the conference lounge, having been using the room whenever it had been available to review the Theurgy's many tactical requirements. She was quite the ship, a serious jump forward in specs from the Nebula-class Endeavour. He'd had his work cut out for him just getting up to speed on his new ship's capabilities. The state of the ship was less than perfect, to say the least, after spending so long on the run without much in the way of resupply opportunities. The reprieve granted them in the Aldean dockyards was a blessing; a chance to take stock, refit and resupply. And for many of Theurgy's crew, to take a breather. Cross himself had enjoyed a bit of shore leave spending time on the beaches of the planet below. Now it was back to the grind, however, and the upcoming meeting was not one Cross was looking forward to for several reasons.

The metal fingers of the Vulcan's prosthetic left hand beat a steady tattoo upon the conference table as he waited for the minutes to pass. His eyes were focused on the view outside the viewport of the conference lounge, the Aldean space docks visible beyond the protective panes, but Cross' mind was miles away, aboard another ship in another time.

Kai and Annika walked ahead of him, close together and holding hands as they shared some private words. Annika had to crane her neck back to look up at Kai's massive frame, her smile wide and looking utterly happy. Cross trailed behind them, his left hand holding that of someone he held dear. He looked over at Jill, her shoulder-length blonde hair framing a face that was smiling at him almost conspiratorially.

"They look so cute together, don't you think?" Jill asked, bumping her shoulder into his as if trying to force him into agreement. Cross smiled as he turned his gaze back at the pair in front of him and smiled, nodding his agreement.

As the brief memory faded in Cross' mind, he raised his left hand which had been holding the blonde Human's hand in the memory. But it had not been this hand that had held hers. Cross held the inorganic appendage in front of his face, slowly flexing the metal digits as though trying to feel the warmth of her touch against his fingers once more. It had been the better part of a year since she'd left, taking a post on Earth and breaking off things between them. For a long time afterwards he had been in a funk, and it had been Kai and Annika who had forced him out of it. Now Kai was stuck in a situation worse than Cross had been in, with Annika still very much present but with no recollection of who he was. Cross sighed and let the hand fall into his lap as he thought about how unfair the situation was for his friend.

A chirp at the conference room doors pulled Cross back to the present, his pale eyes leaving the view outside the ship and instead focusing on the entryway. "Come." Cross called. The doors hissed open, revealing the familiar face as she stepped into the room.

To Cross, Annika Van den Berg looked just as she always had. Her short stature, her brown hair worn just the way she'd always had it, save for when she had dressed herself up for a date with Kai. This time there was no recognition in her eyes as she looked at him though, and Cross knew this meeting would be far from comfortable.

"Annika, come in." Cross said, rising from his seat. Even as Cross spoke the words he realized that he had greeted her as he would have back on the Endeavour, silently chastising himself for the mistake. "Forgive me, I suppose I should be calling you Lieutenant Van den Berg. Please take a seat, Lieutenant." Cross seated himself once more and took a long breath in as she seated herself at the table across form him, then let the breath out as he reached for one of the various PADDs scattered across the table in front of him. It turned out not to be the one he had wanted, and he uttered a soft curse as he flicked it to the side, sending the PADD skittering along the table as he reached for another. His second selection proved to be the one he sought, and he tapped several keys on the screen to pull up the relevant information. His eyes skimmed the displayed data for a moment before he placed the PADD carefully on the table and turned his attention back to his subordinate.

"So, Lieutenant," He began, his pale eyes regarding her with a mixture of recognition and curiosity, "How are you feeling?" A simple question to start things off, as well as test out how Van den Berg would react to him. He knew she had some issues with non-Humans. It had taken her a while to warm up to Cross the first time around, and even then only because she had been involved with his best friend. Cross wasn't sure what to expect from Annika Van den Berg given the current circumstances.

Re: Day 05 [0900hrs.] New Old Faces
Reply #1
[ Lt. (JG) Annika Van den Berg | Conference Lounge | Deck 1 | Vector 1 | USS Theurgy ] @Fife

Annika was relieved that she was finally cleared for duty, well, at least limited duty. The doctors still wouldn't clear her for full duty, even though this was all she had. She'd been doing a little more drinking since the incident in her quarters around four days previous. She'd also had meaningless sex with Eliska multiple times since then.

For some reason, Eliska had stopped talking to her. To Annika it seemed like Eliska had been banned from talking to her. Although it didn't bother her, to Annika, it was just a fun hookup. However, the thing that bothered her was that she had nothing else to do besides work...even if it was only in a limited capacity.

She had been summoned by her new boss, a Lt. Cmdr. Cross. She laughed internally at the name, as it had reminded her of her love of twentieth century music. She thought of artists like Cher and Prince and wondered if Commander Cross was some kind of hidden singing star. The thought of that brought a smile to her face as she approached the doors to the Conference Lounge. She stopped just short of the doors and put her serious face on. She reached out a hand and pressed the door chime. She was invited in and the doors opened. She stepped just inside the doors and came to attention.

"Lieutenant Van den Berg, reported as ordered" as she saw her new boss wasn't a singing star, but instead, a Vulcan.

Ewww, she thought as she looked at him.

The Vulcan used her first name when he first addressed her. This felt weirdly wrong and why would this random Vulcan, whom she clearly didn't know, address her in such a familiar way.

To the Vulcan's credit, he did apologize and addressed her in a more professional way. She was invited to take a seat, and she did. She tried to subtly sit as far from the Vulcan as possible without seeming too overt about her actions.

As her new boss was going through PADDs in front of him, he tossed one to the side and it went skittering across the table top. Annika rolled her eyes subtly at the apparent lack of professionalism of the Vulcan. To this end, she was surprised at how un-Vulcan he was acting, however, she couldn't really expect an alien to act professionally.

Annika sat in the chair, uncomfortable and most of her muscles tensed. She felt like she was in the principal's office, except this time, with a...Vulcan. She couldn't wait until she was dismissed and she could get out of there.

The young woman sat there, unaware to herself, that her xenophobia had gotten worse over the four days since she unsuccessfully tried to kill herself.

The Vulcan asked how she was feeling. She'd answered this question so many times over the last few days.

Annika had pretended to make eye contact, however she stared at the bridge of the Vulcan's nose instead. She saw Bajoran ridges and was confused, wondering if she was still drunk from the previous night.

"Ready to get back to work." was all she said in response.
Lt. Cmdr. Kai Akoni     [Show/Hide]
Lt. (JG) Annika Van den Berg     [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [0900hrs.] New Old Faces
Reply #2
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Conference Lounge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @trevorvw
[Show/Hide]"Ready to get back to work"

Cross regarded Annika with a level gaze, having noted the subtle hints that she was none too happy to be there, and less than happy to find a non-Human at the table with her. He had expected as much from the Human, having known her for over a year, though he found himself disappointed by it all the same.

"I'm glad to hear it, Lieutenant." Cross said, making sure not to address her with familiarity this time. "There are, however, somethings I wish to discuss with you first..." Cross leaned forward in his chair, resting his elbows on the tabletop and interlacing his fingers in front of his chin, though not resting his chin on them. "and I'm afraid you're going to be at somewhat of a disadvantage for this discussion."

Cross sighed softly and let his hands tip forward so that they rested on the table before him rather than obscuring his face. "I'm aware, to some extent, of your current situation. Amnesia must be a hell of a thing to be dealing with." Cross held up a hand to forestall any interruptions. "And before you go assuming that..." Unable to help himself, a small smirk found purchase in the corner of Cross' mouth. "that some gross alien gained access to your medical information, I can assure you that that isn't the case here." Cross let his hand fall to the table and sighed, regarding the Junior Lieutenant sitting across with him with a hint of sadness. "The fact that you don't recognize me is enough to tell me that your memory is missing, miss Van den Berg. From what I gather, you remember nothing of your time aboard the USS Endeavour."

Cross sighed, rising from his chair and moving to the replicator. "Can I get you anything, Lieutenant?" Cross waited to see what she would like, then ordered a coffee for himself. He took Annika her own beverage first, leaving his steaming coffee sitting in the replicator, still not trusting his prosthetic not to crush the mug. He returned to the replicator and took up his coffee before returning to his seat. "I know this is going to be a lot to take in, Lieutenant, but I was the Chief Tactical Officer aboard the Endeavour, and was your commanding officer for the past year aboard that ship." Cross gave Annika a sympathetic look, knowing that he was hitting her with a lot of information. "That is why I've said that you are at a disadvantage during this discussion."

Cross sighed and took a sip of his coffee as he wondered if he was hitting her with too much. It was difficult to remember that she wasn't the same Annika Van den Berg he had known, despite what Kai had told him. That she had no recollection whatsoever of their friendship, or her relationship with Kai, or her time aboard the Endeavour, well... it was difficult to imagine how she must feel. And now here he was, someone that her xenophobia must be horrified to see, telling her they knew each other. It certainly put her in a difficult position, though in truth Cross was in a tricky spot as well. He knew he was throwing a lot of information her way, but at the same time he wanted to be sure she was able to function in her role with the stress of her condition. The doctors may have cleared her for light duties, but Cross didn't much like doctors and wanted to be sure for himself.

"I know I'm throwing a lot at you right now, and I'm sorry," Cross informed her, "but I though it only fair that you be made aware of the situation. I'm well aware of your xenophobia, for example." Cross directed a stern gaze at Annka, as though daring her to deny what he had just said. After a moment, his expression softened, and he continued. "Though believe it or not, you made great strides aboard the Endeavour in that regard." Cross smiled at Annika, hoping the gesture would make the deluge of information seem less harsh. "While I know you'll have trouble believing it right now, you and I eventually became friends through a mutual acquaintance." Cross put his mug down and reached for one of the PADDs that littered the tabletop, keying it out of sleep mode and flicking it towards her, the PADD spinning as it slid in her direction.

The PADD's screen displayed a photograph Kai had taken about 6 months previous. In the photo Annika stood beaming at the camera, still very much in love with the photographer at that point. Beside her stood Cross, his face screwed up in a comical grimace, the Bajoran nasal ridges on his nose seeming to double with the scrunching of his features as he stuck his tongue out at the camera. They were dressed in civilian attire, as the photo having been taken while on shore leave. Cross had had to access a database on the runabout to find the file, and it was one of the few he had managed to recover. Most had been lost with the Endeavour's destruction.

Cross paused to sip his coffee, giving poor Annika a moment to process everything. After a few moments, he set his cup down.

"Now, given that I've just hit you with the proverbial..." Cross' features took on a quizzical expression for a moment, "what's that expression you Humans use? A ton of blocks?" Cross shrugged and gave up on the idiom. Humans had so many strange sayings. "Given everything you've just learned, I'll ask you again. How are you feeling, Lieutenant?"

Re: Day 05 [0900hrs.] New Old Faces
Reply #3
[ Lt. (JG) Annika Van den Berg | Conference Lounge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] @Fife

Her new boss sat across the table from her. He kept blabbing on, pretending to know her from the Endeavour. Annika sat there, she knew she had some missing memory, but there was no way that she could have lost her apparent service on board the Endeavour. She couldn't quite grasp that concept as she listened to the monotone voice drone on and on.

Can't he just shut up already? she thought to herself, before she was interrupted asking if she wanted something to drink.

Annika looked at the man and just said the first thing that came to mind, in an effort to make the awkwardness in the room about as short as possible.

"Ice water, please sir" she managed to spit out the words in rapid succession. The alien brought her a glass of water and set it down on the table and then returned to the replicator, presumably to retrieve his drink.

After Lt. Cmdr. Cross had sat back down, he kept talking and talking as Annika pretended to listen to what he had to say.

It's not that Annika was purposefully apathetic to what he had to say, it's just at that moment in time, she just didn't care.

If he knew how truly fucked up I am, there's no way I'd even be on this ship, she self-reflected while simultaneously hoping that the man sitting across from her wasn't a telepath.

As he kept talking about the 'good ol' days' on the Endeavour, he all of a sudden tossed a PADD in her direction which had skittered across the table top, spinning before coming to a rest in front of her. She reached out in front of her a picked up the PADD. She looked at the picture on it and saw herself next to Commander Cross.

It hit her all at once, like a punch to the gut.

She studied the photograph as a flash of memory revealed itself.

Annika found herself standing on some planet she didn't recognize. She was standing next to Commander Cross, feeling happy, smiling at the camera. Behind the camera stood the behemoth of the man that was Commander Akoni. She was amazed at how lucky she was. To be in love with the best man in the universe, to have her boss be such a good friend and to genuinely just be in a really good place in her life.

As, as Kai said cheese and took their picture, she felt the warm breeze blow around them as she displayed her biggest smile.

The memory, or what had seemed like a memory, had faded just as quickly as it appeared. She once again found herself sitting in the comparatively cold conference room, holding the PADD with that picture. She ran her finger across the display, longingly, trying to recapture the memory she had just experienced. 

Commander Cross asked the question that broke her out of her trance. He had asked how she was feeling.

Annika outwardly smirked at the question. She truly didn't know how to answer that.

"I remember when Kai took that picture. It was just after Jill had left for Earth. Kai and I wanted to cheer you up." Annika said matter of factly, speaking with some familiarity. She was surprised that had come out of her mouth. She still didn't know these people, but yet her brain decided to spit that out.

"Commander...I need help... she said, looking at the hybrid sitting across from her, pleadingly and with genuine fear in her eyes.

OOC: [Show/Hide]
Lt. Cmdr. Kai Akoni     [Show/Hide]
Lt. (JG) Annika Van den Berg     [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 05 [0900hrs.] New Old Faces
Reply #4
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Conference Lounge | Deck 01 | Vector 01 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @trevorvw
[Show/Hide]"I remember when Kai took that picture. It was just after Jill had left for Earth. Kai and I wanted to cheer you up."

A simple statement, though one that held great weight behind it. Despite the fact that Annika had openly smirked as he had asked his question for the second time, Cross found himself surprised that her smirk was followed by her admission of the memory. To say the mention of Jill's name stung would have been an understatement, the name drudging up memories both fond and painful, though Cross pushed that reaction aside and put it from his mind and choose instead to focus on Annika.

"Commander... I need help..."

The look she gave him seemed was fearful, the fear mixed with what seemed to be a pleading expression. In that moment, Cross' heart went out to her. He knew what it was to live with horrible memories, memories which would likely be best forgotten. But to have actually forgotten? To have a void where memory ought to be? That must be terrifying. For a moment Cross questioned whether he should have shown her the photograph. Perhaps it was best not to stir up such memories, and the fear that apparently came with them, though he wanted her to know that he was a friend, that he was on her side. The fact that the picture had jogged something in her mind seemed to have been enough to elicit the plea for help, at the very least.

Cross was glad that he had broken through her shell, that he had established at least some level of trust, no matter how small. The Vulcan was also acutely aware that he was not qualified to provide Annika the help which she needed, which she so desperately wanted.

I'm glad Kai's not here to see this. Cross thought to himself, again feeling a pang of pity for his closest friend.

"I'll see to it that you get whatever help you need, Annika." Cross cursed his slip up, quickly correcting himself. "Sorry, Lieutenant." Cross raised his cup, intending to take a sip of his coffee though hesitating with the mug hovering in front of his face. "I didn't show you that picture to try and drag memories out of you, or to try and make you uncomfortable. I wanted to let you know that I'm on your side here, Lieutenant Van den Berg. You're not alone in this." Cross sipped his drink then, savouring the bitter darkness held within the cup. He sighed, placing the mug on the table once more. "I'm often accused of being a grumpy bastard, Lieutenant, but I'm a grumpy bastard that you've got in your corner. You may not remember me, but I do remember you, and I'll do anything within my power to help you." Cross leaned back in his chair, pulling the mug from the table and cradling it in his lap as he regarded her with pale blue eyes filled with concern.

"I know you don't remember my background, Lieutenant, but I am sadly not very qualified to actually help with what you're going through." Cross admitted, speaking carefully. "I'm happy to talk with you should you ever have the need, either as your department head, or as a friend. Though to get the help you need, and while I know you won't be happy to hear this, I believe it best if you see one of the ship's counsellors." That reminded him, he had an appointment of his own with one of those same counsellors later that day. Cross' jaw tightened at the thought of going to see the fellow, who a quick look at the ship's records had identified as a Vulcan.

Fucking pointy eared bastards... Cross grumbled inwardly, the irony of the fact that he, too, was a pointy eared bastard not being lost on him.

"I'll be seeing one of the counsellors myself later today." Cross informed her with an amused smirk, "I'll let you know if he's an asshole." Cross chuckled and sipped his coffee, his facial expression returning to one of seriousness as he continued. "That being said, if there's anything you want to talk about... or anything you want to ask... I'm here."

Cross waited a moment, yet Annika stayed silent. Cross nodded to himself, knowing that the Human woman had just been given a lot of information to process. She'd likely need time to make sense of it all. "Very well, then. If there's nothing else, Lieutenant, I won't keep you." Cross nodded again once Annika shook her head, giving her a slight smile. "Alright. Dismissed, Lieutenant." As Annika rose form her seat and made her way to the door, Cross' eyes following her as she went.

"Oh, and Annika." He watched her glance at him over her shoulder. "My door is always open." With those words he watched her go, the doors hissing shut behind her. Cross sighed then, his gaze lowering to take in the array of PaDDs on the table before him. He reached out and lifted one, keying the screen to life and seeing duty rosters listed as he set back to work.

  • Last Edit: September 11, 2019, 06:41:57 PM by Fife