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EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

[Ensign Vinata Vinoja | Hylota Vinoja's Quarters | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan


Those final few minutes before the goodbye were always the most awkward. All had been said, all had been done; now what was there to do? Sitting on the bed besides his sister in Hylota's quarters, Vinata wrung his hands nervously, not sure what to do with himself, cursing himself for arriving ten minutes too early. He had come initially just to do a final checkup of Hylota's egg, even if the scans were quite redundant. He was hardly going to find anything with a medical tricorder that hadn't been seen in Sickbay, and Hylota would certainly be scanning the egg throughout her voyage back home to Dejino. But still he had scanned and, obviously, had found that the egg was in perfect health. Which left him and his sister sitting there, fifteen minutes before they would say goodbye.

And given the very serious possibility that Vinata would die in the coming months in the Theurgy's crusade, the weight of that goodbye was crushing.

The silence stretched. Vinata resisted the urge to check the time, instead occasionally glancing at Hylota's precious egg which they had fought so hard to save on the Versant. It was safely ensconced in a growth chamber now, with padding and other technological wizardry protecting it against whatever might transpire. Still, a little transparent part of the chamber showed the egg itself where Hylota and Maal's offspring were developing, innocent of the drama around them.

"I will miss you, sister." There. The words were said, slipped out almost on their own accord, the silence now breached. Vinata's amphibian hands kept wringing as he mumbled his words to his lap. "It's good that you're getting out, that your child will be safe. I am happy. Mother and Father will take care of you, protect you from Starfleet, and the doctors at Dejino can help you better than anyone in the universe...but I will miss you. So much. This will be strange without you."

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #1
[ Hylota Vojona | Hylota Vinoja's Quarters | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff
Sitting there next to her brother, Hylota could still hardly believe that she had actually gained clearance from Captain Ives to leave the Theurgy.

Fortune had it that Vector 2 had picked up a Runabout from the Endeavour, namely the USS Niger. The shuttle would not have any connection to the Theurgy, and while she'd be charged with the duty to care for the wounded from the Endeavour during the long flight to Dejino, she'd also have company from a couple of officers from that ship. One of them was a CONN officer, so she would not have to worry about being at the helm all the time as well. Better yet, the android from the Savi - as little as Hylota may have liked her - had actually helped with the new growth chamber for her egg, one that wasn't merely keeping it in stasis any more.

Though Vinata... he had decided to stay, to her surprise. She realised that she might not be objective in her thoughts about her brother's decision, since she had very personal reasons for wanting to be off the ship. Still, wasn't returning to Dejino preferable over the Theurgy? Had he not suffered enough on his own? While she had been unable to resist the Savi aphrodisiacs and done the unthinkable towards that fighter pilot... Vinata had been on the receiving end of such trauma a couple of mere weeks ago. As claimed, it may have tempered him... but...

In the end, she realised that her biggest concern about Vinata deciding to stay... was that she'd miss him. It had nothing to do with consequences and experiences, but the bond they had, stronger yet after having attended Starfleet Academy together. Starting out, they were merely begotten by the same parents. Now, sharing in their tumultuous adventure... they were so much more than before.

"I will miss you too, brother," she chirred quietly when he finally spoke - the unsaid finally voiced. "I wish I could change your mind... But I realise that you are not just my little brother, and that I can't continue protecting you forever. I may have thought you had to lean on me at every turn, but on the Versant... I saw how you no longer shied away from danger. You've grown... and I need to accept it."

She smiled and turned her head, the streaming stars outside the viewport shimmering across her brother's black eyes and his blue and red skin. She raised her four-fingered hand and placed it on top of his - stilling the wringing of his hands with the touch as much as her words, she hoped.

"I am proud of you, and I will likely regret that I didn't try harder to make you come with me... yet be that as it may, I think this crew needs you. The Federation and Starfleet may have let me down, being far from what I hoped, even though I realise I am unjust in my opinion given the alien infestation. You, however... you show me that my opinions may not be that of all Ovri, and that others may walk our path in the future. By the Stone Mother... please be safe, brother, and come to see me when all of this is over."

That was when the stars stilled outside the viewport, and the interior of her quarters fell into darkness. The Theurgy had dropped out of warp. It was time to depart.

"Walk with me to the shuttle bay," she chirped, and rose to her feet. She was wearing flowing, traditional Ovri clothing, her uniform folded on the bed next to where she sat. She picked up the growth chamber by the handle at the top, and shouldered her small bag. "There is something I must tell you..."

Together, they left her quarters behind - never to return there again.

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #2
[Ensign Vinata Vinoja | Hylota Vinoja's Quarters | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan


Hylota's words were not necessarily unique in and of themselves, but still, Vinata felt himself warm at her praise. His earlier awkwardness was now merely a memory thanks to Hylota's deft compassion. A lifetime of living in his sister's shadow was not an easy thing, after all, and her support was something that he would dearly miss. At her request, he packed up his medkit and made to follow her out on the short walk to the shuttlebay.

"After everything that we have survived, I bet that there's little you can say that would surprise me," Vinata joked, smiling as they walked despite his anxiety of staying without his enviable and more capable sister. He reflexively swept a hand over his bald cyan head, an odd tic that he had picked up since the Savi had violated them. "Although I haven't had much time to catch up on everything that has happened in the past few days. I've'been so busy with work that I only heard rumours, most of them being really silly. Weird things, you know, like that the Bajoran gods interfered to save us from the Borg, or that the Organians are helping us fight the Parasites."

Vinata laughed, although there was a distinct touch of nervousness to his laugh as they entered a turbolift that belied his derision. "I don't even know who the Organians are, but my patient was so insistent and sure of himself! I referred him to the counselors, but they are so busy right now that it might be a long while before he can be helped..."

The turbolift doors opened, and Vinata winced, closing his eyes. "Apologies, sister. I was babbling, you know me, I do that when I, you know. What did you want to tell me?"

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #3
[ Hylota Vojona | En Route to the Upper Shuttle Bay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff
Hylota was amused at the patient of Vinata's who'd insisted on Organian involvement, but she'd also heard that the Bajoran Prophets had been aiding the Theurgy. In what way or fashion, she wasn't sure, but either way, they'd made it. The losses were deeply felt, personal and horrible, but they'd made it.

"We both saw what Doctor Nicander was, before we were abducted. One of them. The Infested," she chirred as they made their way towards the shuttle bay. "On the Versant, you told me of your off-duty relationship with the Câroon, and how you were enjoying yourself sexually with him. I do not judge you for that, in how he could deceive you about his true nature," she said, thinking of Maal, and how she'd felt a bond to the late Klingon, and forgiven him for what he'd been forced to do by the Vasser mutineers. "How could I... when Nicander also took advantage of me just before I went into heat."

She had not told Vinata exactly what lay between her and the Câroon, and she didn't want Vinata to learn about if after she left. She looked at her brother, wondering how much of an attachment the other Ovri had formed with the Chief Medical Officer. "Had the Infested Doctor pumped my circulatory system full with aphrodisiacs one mere day later... it may have been his egg I carried with me now. Instead, it is Maal's, and I am glad for it. Before I started to show, a week before Starbase 84, I also took the Câroon to my quarters, not yet having forgiven Maal. Had I known about you and him... I would not have done so. I hope you can accept that as truth, even though it would have been ideal if neither of us fell for his viles."

Little did Hylota know what Vinata and Maal had done, the day before the Versant found them.

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #4
[Ensign Vinata Vinoja | Hylota Vinoja's Quarters | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan


The more his sister spoke, the more nauseous Vinata became. The idea of Lucan being...tainted...was profoundly disturbing, and Vinata's blue skin tingled in response. He gulped, trying to stay calm for his sister and her egg, but it was far from easy. His mind flashed back to his intimate encounters with the Câroon doctor and Vinata fought the urge to retch. He tried to remind himself that there was nothing unclean about it, not really. It was merely a parasitic infection, after all...and yet Lucan had been tainted with evil. A sickening, horrifying evil. Remembering the sensual excitement that they had shared, the wondrous feel of Lucan's cool skin upon his own, the erotic headiness of his perfect shaft, the incomparable rush of the orgasms that Lucan had given him...argh! Vinata felt himself respond ever so slightly, and he hated himself for the instinctive reaction. It was horrible!

And the monster had done it to Hylota too! Worse, he had violated her! Vinata desperately wanted to feel anger, to feel murderous rage, but it wouldn't come. He wasn't that kind of man. He only felt awful for his sister and the terrible things that she had been through. Thus, as they reached the shuttle bay doors, Vinata wordlessly just turned and hugged Hylota.

"I love you, sister," he affirmed softly before releasing her and stepping back. "Thank you for...for telling me. I had heard rumours, but it is good that I hear it from you. Now, I must...I must do the same." Vinata paused, taking a deep breath as he nervously stroked his bare scalp. "You know of what happened to me and Maal. You the rest." He glanced anxiously at the closed shuttlebay doors, where the runabout that would take Hylota away was waiting. "After the mutiny, and what we were forced to do to each other, Maal and I experienced a mutual attraction. I believe that the attraction was born of the trauma that we shared, nothing more. The attraction was becoming a distraction for us both, though, and Maal wanted to focus on you and your child, so we...we...we sated our desires. I am sorry, Hylota, so sorry. I should have spoken to you first!"

Vinata turned, rubbing his hands together anxiously, not knowing what else he could possibly say.

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #5
[ Hylota Vojona | En Route to the Upper Shuttle Bay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff
Hylota embraced her brother, returning the affection given. Shared between victims. "It's all right, I have come to terms with it. It took me some time during our stay with the Savi to get over it, but I am fine now."

Then, after they parted a little, Vinata began to talk about another incident entirely, and one that he felt guilty of. Hylota felt her black eyes widen a bit in reaction, surprised that Maal hadn't mentioned any of this to her, but she could also understand that - given the source of this desire - it was something neither Maal nor Vinata cared to be open with. Desire was a fickle thing, and theirs had sprung in unsound soil. Still, given their culture, and how men of the Ovri were known to play with other men quite often, she supposed she shouldn't discriminate on Maal and Vinata just because Maal was Klingon.

"I'm... just surprised at Maal having an interest in males... Then again, aside from what my sex had been before the Savi, I look male to most of the species aboard this ship," she chirred, not completely certain how to take the information. "It... It's all right, just a little bit odd that he didn't tell me. Perhaps... Yes, perhaps it was because of his culture, to keep it from me in order to preserve me any hurt. Inadvertently, I'd say he managed to hurt me by not telling me something so honest and, frankly, understandable."

She glanced towards Vinata, sensing that the answer was evident. "I take it he was nervous about being with you, because of how he was raised in the Federation, and didn't wish you to tell me either because he thought it so shameful? I regret to hear it, because I would not have begrudged the two of you a way to reconcile with the horror you both endured. I forgive you, Vinata, don't you worry...."

She raised a four-fingered hand and stroked his cheek. "Let's head to the shuttle bay now. Survivors from the Endeavour are waiting for me. My the Stone Mother, let's just hope the doctors on Dejino can handle the situation I have betwixt my legs, right?"

Evidetly, there was a Savi android aboard that would help Vinata. As for herself? She would have to find other means to become herself... but perhaps she'd experiment some first, given the unique circumstances she was in.

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #6
[Ensign Vinata Vinoja | Upper Shuttle Bay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan


Grinning, Vinata shook his bald head ruefully. "You always were the better of us," he said honesty. Once, when they had been competing so fiercely for their medical careers, those words would've crushed him, but now the resentment was almost non-existent. It was just another way that the brutality of recent weeks had affected him. After all the pain and horror, such trifling things as sibling jealousy seemed all the sillier with hindsight.

Vinata tapped the small control next to the large shuttlebay doors and they opened with their usual loud clunk to reveal the expansive shuttlebay beyond. Amongst the Theurgy's flock of small shuttles before them, the large runabout was unmistakable, a small starship in its own right. People were milling about the Niger already, either preparing the vessel for its long voyage or, like Hylota, preparing to say their farewells.

The two siblings walked up to the runabout in companionable silence. Not seeing Maal yet (and ever so slightly grateful not to), Vinata crossed his arms under his breasts and glanced at Hylota. "When you see Mother and Father," Vinata said, "be as honest as you think they can handle. I can't...oh. I can't even think of how they must be handling all this. If you can, though, please tell them that it was my choice to remain. I'm staying because I...I think that I can help." Vinata shuddered, his shoulders hunching at the memories of what that had already cost him...the rapes, the violence, the constant terror, the endless funerals. "Tell them that I love them, and if I make it, I'll come visit when it's all over. Please do that, sister."

His night-black eyes flicked over to the Niger anxiously, than back to his sister with a forced grin. "And maybe don't get angry with me if I forget to send you a hatch-day note? On account of saving the galaxy?"

Re: EPIL: S [D06|2345] Exodus

Reply #7
[ Hylota Vojona | Upper Shuttle Bay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff @Top Hat p
Hylota inclined her head towards her brother, with the activity around the Niger seen behind her back. "I will speak of your brave choice, and once you can safely communicate, I expect to hear from you. Just like father and mother."

Then, she raised her four-fingered hand in their native farewell, with the fingers spread and the hand turning from herself... until their palms touched. She held her brothers gaze for a long time, smiling as the lights of the shuttle bay danced in their black eyes. Custom held that no words were to be spoken - the farewell loosing its meaning if they did - so eventually...

...Hylota turned around and walked away, without looking back. She vanished in the throng of people around the Niger, and Captain Ives could be seen there as well, along with other officers that were going to stay on the Theurgy. Briefly, she caught the eye of her Commanding Officer, whom had also been abducted by the Savi. Doing so, the man - for he was in male form - stepped up to her.

"Thank you, Lieutenant Vojona, for your service. We will do what we can to keep you and your people safe on Dejino. The Ovri might decide to not enter the Federation, I know this, but regardless, my thoughts will be with both you and this child... that came to the world aboard this ship."

Simple words, but Hylota found them earnest. The simplicity of them did not feel rehearsed. "Despite all that befell me and my mate... and how I am unable to continue..." she chirred, "it has been an honour, Captain."

Jien smiled to her, and extended his hand in the Starfleet way. "On behalf of our new First Officer, I also wish to thank you for the help you lend the survivors of the Endeavour. You will make many families out there grateful, and they will also seed the truth behind enemy lines. Your final service to us may be decisive in this mission. Good luck."

Raising her hand, she shook Ives'. It would be good to leave such odd customs as the handshake behind. "Thank you, Captain."

Eventually, after the last arrangements were done, the Niger lifted from the deck and slowly turned towards the open bay doors. Hylota saw the bay through the viewport of the Runabout, with a CONN Officer from the Endeavour next to her. She saw her brother, making eye-contact one last time, before he vanished from her view... and the Runabout exited the Theurgy.

Soon enough, the Niger went to warp - winking out of sight in the distance.


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