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CHAPTER 02: Reunion [First Day]

CHAPTER 02: Reunion

[ Triage Centre | Yellow Zone | 3 Hours Post Mortem Arcorn Neotin | 1100 hrs. ] Attn: Adakoch21

Evelyn Rawley still could not believe who was seated next to her biobed. Even as she spoke with her, asserted that she was actually there despite what she had come to believe since months back, Ranger could not wrap her medicated mind around the fact that Oracle had come back from the dead.

"Some say any fight you walk away from is one you should be content with...just as any landing you walk away from was always considered a good landing by test pilots," she replied when she had been asked about the latest fight against the Calamity starship - sent to destroy them all form some unknown future. "That you sit here, with me...I'd say is the bloody masterpiece, but then...I don't know that I have the eye for artistry you do," she added, letting her lop-sided smile deepen a bit.

There had been a gathering three hours past, and while she had been inside the Triage Centre, Rawley thought she'd been able to hear everything that mattered. The Ship AI was unfettered and roaming free by some kind of technical miracle, and the Chief Science Officer's husband had leaped to his own death, presumably since his wife had been shot down by the Calamity hologram - leaving behind the grieving daughter. Rawley thought she had actually heard the Cadet's scream at learning about the man's selfish decision. Yet it was an Ash'reem family, so Rawley knew she would not have been able to hear the ultrasonic, blood-curdling cry.

Until Oracle had stepped into the private little tent alcove she occupied, Rawley had actually understood how the man could have leapt to his death. Being an orphan, she did not sympathise with leaving behind his daughter to suffer the fate of their cursed crew alone... yet she could understand. The Theurgy and the Harbinger were in for a near impossible challenge, and with the toll of everything that had come to pass, and what may lay in store for them, the loss of one's life-partner would uproot the wit of stronger men than him.

In her case, loosing Oracle had made Rawley take risks she would not normally take.

It begged the question what she might do next, if she ever got to see the inside of a cockpit again after trying to tear Mr. Renard a new asshole the other day - questioning his authority. She had failed miserably, and had been left contemplating the same choice Arcorn Neotin had made. What was the point to suffer hardships if there was no gratitude left in the world? Why live when she could not make any difference? Why go on when there was no one left by her side? All the liquor, cock or pussy in the world could not merit the pain she tried to hide.

A pain she wore on her sleeve now that Oracle was seated by her side.

"I..." she said and bared her teeth, refusing to cry. She stammered with pent up emotion, hidden by the scar-tissue around her heart. She lay still underneath her blanket through. "I still can't believe you are actually here."

Re: EPISODE 03 : Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #1
Soo Young had been a bit hesitant to see Evelyn when they'd told her about the woman's response to her "Death" She'd always seen Evelyn as a strong woman, someone who didn't let her emotions get the better of her. Sure she was a bit rough around the edges but she always seemed in control of herself. She couldn't believe it when she'd been told she had been injured during an engagement due to unfocused piloting due to her MIA status.

As she sat beside Evelyn she could feel waves of guilt washing over her heart. Evelyn was here because of her because she'd let herself become unfocused. She bit her lip keeping her hands placed in her lap and her eyes turned down, When she'd returned she though their reunion would be a happy one full of love and passion over the years it was what she had come to expect from Evelyn. But the knowledge of her hand in Evelyn's pain wounded her deeply. As Evelyn spoke she kept quiet as it had always been when they were together.

She didn't need to hear Evelyn to speak to understand her and at times it felt like Evelyn did the same. There had been times where one look would tell Evelyn all she needed to know about herself and she loved that feeling. The feeling that she didn't need to speak to know that someone who loved her understood her. But it made the pain of watching her lying on this biobed that much more excruciating. Part of her wanted to punch the ground in anger at herself. But the more logical part of her mind insisted that this course of action wouldn't solve a damn thing.

She turned her eyes to Evelyn turning her body a bit. She felt a small smile work it's way onto her lips as Evelyn spoke her disbelief of her presence. "Maybe I'm not here maybe it's all a figment of your alcohol fueled party driven imagination."  Soo Young said trying to brighten the mood with some humor. Her hand slipped beneath the blanket to intertwine their fingers together her thumb brushing over her palm tracing small figures. She felt a blush spread across her cheeks as she held Evelyn's hand it felt new again. Before she'd feel warm and affectionate while holding Evelyn's hand. Now it was like she was a teenager with a crush again.

She couldn't help but wonder what had Evelyn done to cope with her disappearance. Did she throw herself into work or shut down completely? Or perhaps she had drowned herself in alcohol and sex trying to cover up the pain that came with loss. She'd felt the pain it was impossible not to she'd been so attached to Evelyn's mind that the pain had become somewhat of staple within her mind in the past 4 weeks. For the 4 weeks she'd struggled to come here all she had to focus upon was pain and anguish.

Soo Young shut her eyes feeling tears on the verge of falling. The knowledge that she'd brought upon this entire situation was enough to break the wall she'd become so good at erecting around herself. She bit her lip squeezing Evelyn's hand "I'm sorry..." Soo Young whispered. She didn't really know what exactly she was apologizing for. Her disappearance perhaps or maybe being the purpose of Evelyn's hospitalization and mental anguish or perhaps it was both.

Re: EPISODE 03 : Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #2
At Soo Young's comment about her being a mirage for Rawley, she could but snort in bitter reply and look away. Sucking some air through her teeth, she answered. "My imagination has been long deprived from both alcohol and festivities. None of the bloody doctors will let me drink the smallest shot of their fine liquor to take the edge off. Fuck, none of the nurses want to slip me a bottle of anything with an alcohol percentage... even if I slip them a gander under my bloody blanket. I'd suck so much cock from any corner of the fucking galaxy for some scotch at this point. Hell, I'd let them clean my other pipes too if they found the real thing instead of the synthehol piss we got in Below Decks."

After a few moments, Evelyn looked back towards Soo Young, and as she was still there - as unbelievable a fact as it still was - the former Wolf-05 looked sad. For as unbelieving as her presence was, Ranger still found the fact that Oracle was back the best news she'd had since... Well, since she was believe lost in the phaser fires of that fight. Yet that feeling of nostalgia, that good feeling... it made Rawley feel weak too. And it was not something desirable.

That Oracle got lost had made Evelyn fall back on her old beliefs, just to steel herself against such loss to ever happen to her again. Was that why Soo Young was sad? That she could use those brain-sensor abilities to see what kind of hard-boiled bastard she had become? Yet seeing Soo Young almost cry did not make Rawley feel like a bastard. It made her feel hollow. As if her feelings were cries in an empty flight deck. He hated the echo since it told her how far gone she was.

She frowned derisively. "What's wrong?" she asked, clenching her jaws. "You don't like what you... see... anymore? Fuck it, Seung. I got over your fucking death. You should be flattered that it took two critical surgeries and it will take another couple of weeks of a second rehabilitation in order to come to terms with it. Don't you dare be sad for what I feel like to your Betazoid mind-trick nerves. I earned this on my own. My fucking prerogative. My damn choice! I literally gave up on survival in order to put my life on the line for our base ship and the squadron. I was prepared to die for your sake, and now you are sorry? It's too fucking late to be sorry. I am a walking corpse at this point. A bloody singing and dancing skeleton still in decay. How dare you look sad?"

Tears welled up from some far recess of her blackened heart, yet she refused to acknowledge them. Despite the tears she bared her teeth while she spoke. "I fucking dare you to look at me and make me feel again. I..." She snarled, looking away. "I can only... cope like this so get the hell out!"

Re: EPISODE 03 : Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #3
Soo Young could feel the chill in the air as Ranger replied to her feeble attempt at humor. The bitterness in her voice and annoyance was all it took for her to know that Rawley wasn't in the best of moods. She'd know long enough that an angry Rawley was a Rawley you didn't want to be around. As she listened to Rawley's anger infused comments toward the Theurgy's medical staff  and how far she would go to get her fix for alcohol. To say it worried her was an understatement but she'd grown used to Rawley's wild style of living. But what she was seeing now wasn't drinking for the sake of it. The woman she sat beside was drinking more to drown out so many things that fluctuated.

She closed her eyes again as so many different emotions flooded her mind it was like someone was invading her personal space pushing into her mind making it difficult to separate her own thoughts from the ones she knew belonged to another. 4 weeks ago Rawley was her lighthouse in the storm the one mind she loved to listen to. The person who's emotions she loved to share and feel, now however everything she'd grown to love was gone killed the same day she was.

The fact that she had a hand in it's disappearance only served to make the pain of having lost it worse. She couldn't lie she was scared of what Evelyn, "Her" Evelyn had become. The times they'd shared together the times when they were happy and passionate. Her mind drifted back to nights shared together in Rawley's quarters or even times where they'd been adventurous and shared intimate moments of passion together in public areas around the ship. During those times Evelyn and she were happy. They felt for one another but the person sitting beside her now was empty of everything except sadness, anger and pain and the overwhelming want to shut out everything else.

She softly gasped as Evelyn addressed her asking what was wrong with her. She bit her lip as she spoke asking her if she didn't like what she saw anymore. She opened her mouth to speak but was cut off as Evelyn continued speaking talking about how she'd gotten over her dissappearance after the skirmish with the USS Sydney. Right now she wanted to shut everything out of her mind to just curl into a ball in some dark corner and tune out the world altogether. But even more words hammered Soo Young's ears as Evelyn continued speaking explaining her transition into what she was now. She clenched her eyes shut unable to stand the words coming from Evelyn's mouth. She stood abruptly clenching her fists at her side and steeling herself. This wasn't hard considering she shared an emphatic link with people around her.

"I...never wanted you to die..." Soo Young said through clenched teeth fighting back her tears. "I never wanted this to happen...I didn't want to leave you...." Soo Young hissed before turning to Evelyn looking her in the eye. "Fine!!" Soo Young said loudly feeling her heart ache as she said these words. "It's too late I see how it is! Anything we had meant nothing because you want to shut everyone else out!" Soo Young's eyes held pain within them as she spoke but also an unspoken look of resolve. "You want to be dead...Be dead then...I won't get in your way, I won't be sad for you why should I Evelyn?" Soo Young said.

She quickly felt her heart ripping itself to shreds as she saw tears forming within Evelyn's eyes but only more hateful words left her mouth. "I won't make you feel...You don't want to I can tell that much..." Soo Young said quietly before leaving the infirmary. As the door slid to a close behind her she walked a ways away from the room before sliding down a wall and allowing her pent up emotion to burst through. She felt tears steaming down her cheeks as she buried her face in her arms. She didn't want Evelyn to cope she wanted everythign to be how it was before this entire shit storm had occurred. She wanted to go back to the times they were happy. Soo Young let out an anguished moan more tears stained her uniform.

Re: EPISODE 03 : Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #4
After Soo Young left, Rawley was choking on the raking sobs that accosted her where she lay on the biobed. She hated herself for being so frail that she could not contain her feelings despite all that had happened to her.

"Shit!" she cursed and slammed her fist into the plastic softness of the biobed's surface. "Shit, shit, shit!" Again and again. Measured, hard and brutal hammering that made her carpus hurt and redirect her focus from the hurt inside. Her eyes were blurred with damnable wetness, and she clenched her teeth together in order to refuse voice to the misery. She would not fucking cry like a little girl without her mom and pa. She hated herself for refusing Oracle back into her life, yet she could not do it. Not again. She would never break again and therefore she could never return to the mawkish and jolly life she'd led with Soo Young. She would never be that soft again, because that softness was bound to make fate cut her up once more.

"Fuck it! Give me some scotch or I swear I will kill someone!" she cried out through the tent flap of her ward, struggling to get to her feet. "Or give me back my wings so that I can serve some bloody purpose!" Once she was on her feet, holding her blanket to her front with a white-knuckled fist, she began to kick the side of the biobed - making it topple over on the third try.

"I hate!" she cried and tossed the blanket, kicking the biobed where it lay, tears running down her cheeks, "I fucking hate just lying here!"

Then the medics came, and her hate turned on them anew. Familiar hate. Far remote from the new fact of Oracle's return.

[ Outside the Triage Centre | Thirty Minutes Later | 1130 hrs. ]

Stepping out into the sunlight of the valley, Dr. Lucan cin Nicander took a deep breath - closing his eyes to enjoy the light and rare breeze.

He had just finished the autopsy of Arcorn Neotin together with Miko Dauntless, and it had given him need for a short break. Pause which he used in order to breathe the open air and remember the crisp winds of Envon - the home which he sought to destroy. Dressed in uniform and with a white labcoat billowing lightly around his legs, he turned his tanned countenance to appraise the activity outside. It was then that he spotted the fighter pilot seated a few yards away from the entrance to the Triage Centre. Tilting his head, he reckoned - as he observed her - that there was something that troubled the young lass. On the outside, he came to wear a concerned frown, yet on the inside... the beast rejoiced, and grinned with animal lust to scar more than that hurt soul.

"Hello?" the CMO said, and as he crouched down in front of the woman, his labcoat spread like wings upon the grass - like a guardian angel come to take mercy upon her. Only he was not the angel she'd care for if she could read his mind. Those Betazoid eyes of hers was merely subject to his silent mockery, for he knew that his Câroon heritage made him appear like a white sheet to her - with nothing of his internal machinations visible. None of the taint. None of the beast. And none of the brief inclination to strike her down and rape her eyes out.

"What's wrong? What happened, Chief... Seung? Wh-where you not lost back when...?" his pale grey eyes were wide with both concern and surprise.

Re: EPISODE 03 : Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #5
[ Outside the Triage Centre | Thirty Minutes Later | 1130 hrs. ]

Soo Young sat beneath a tree a few yards away from the triage center. Even after 30 minutes had passed the ache inside of her heart and mind refused to leave her be plaguing her mind with it's looming presence. She gripped the sides of her head she just wanted all the emotions to shut up she wanted them to go quiet and silent. To have them stop tormenting them with their trespassing into her mind. Times like this she would just place her headphones in her ear and try to tune out everything letting the music paint it's own picture in her mind while shutting out all other things. But 4 weeks had been a long time and finally the small device had died even with the extensive power rationing she'd put into keeping it alive during her trip.

She let out a small yelp of surprise as she heard someone speak. She had honestly been surprised by this person's presence often she could feel when someone was coming closer to her as their thoughts would intensify as they approached. But as she wiped away the tears from her eyes she looked up to see the Theurgy's doctor Lieutenant Commander Nicander. She blinked her eyes for a few seconds simply staring at him. She couldn't hear a thing as she stared at him it was like sitting in a room completely devoid of sound no feelings or thoughts just silence. She broke eye contact turning her eyes towards the ground, she wouldn't admit it but the doctor's presence wasn't unwelcome in fact it was quite pleasant to have someone who she couldn't hear.

"I just came back...But now I'm wondering if maybe I should have stayed lost..." Soo Young said curling in on herself pulling her knees up to her chest. "My reunion with Rawley didn't end up as...happy as I thought it would." Soo Young said wiping a stray tear away from her eyes. "I shouldn't be surprised...How would I feel if she just left me?" Soo Young muttered. She sighed before looking up at Lucan "I'm sorry I shouldn't be unloading this on you doctor..." Soo Young said as she regained some semblance of composure her common neutral expression returning to her face.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #6
Behind those keen and kind eyes of his, Dr. Nicander was dissecting every word the Wolf pilot said. Diagnosed every gesture she made as a symptom of her thoughts. Unravelling the mystery of the mind that hid behind those dark eyes of hers. "I understand."

Behavioural studies was a survival instinct of his, born from a life led pretending to be someone else. That was why his kin had chosen him as a suitable host. He was already hiding his true dark nature from the world, masking his life-devoted ambitions to be else than righteous justice upon a world that had taken away his sole reason to live. Since the ritual, he had been harbouring two different evils behind his immaculate façade, without the world knowing the difference. That he had become... oh, so much more. For he remained the same man that had sacrificed everything for love, only the fissures and cracks in his heart had been sealed shut by something far stronger. A beast created by society had become one with a beast born in the primordial soup of a profane existence.

"I have dedicated my life to treat people for their injuries," he said to Chief Seung, smiling kindly where he crouched before her with his elbows resting on his knees - his tattooed hands clasped in a relaxed away between them. "Committed myself to preserve their health and rinse them from toxins and decease. Convinced them to get back on their feet and learn to walk through life again, regardless how worse for wear they have been when they came to me. Trust me, unloading your troubles onto me is hardly a burden I cannot shoulder. I am a doctor, not a counsellor, yet I for one should know that injuries may go deeper than the flesh we wear."

A truth wielded in untruth. He may be a flesh puppet for his kin, yet he also remembered what kind of misery that may corrode a man enough to give up on living for his own egotistical needs... and devote himself to a justice that merited him none at all. Yet now, oh, he had dual purposes in his duplicitous existence, and so little time to enjoy the possible spoils that may come of it. Then again, control begets opportunity...

"Evelyn Rawley has been just as lost as you were," he said with his exotic accent, and he reached out to rub her shoulder with his tattooed hand, letting on a smile of compassion, "Now, you are her anchor, and she may need some time to understand that. She cannot drift alone forever. Give her some time. Rejoice in the simple fact that you survived, and that you are among friends anew."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #7
Soo Young pulled her body in closer on itself wrapping her arms around her knees and pulling them towards her chest. The doctor's presence was comforting it made her feel like herself and not someone else. Like she could feel for herself and not for others. The pain of her falling out with Evelyn was still fresh upon her soul leaving a deep scar in her heart but the additional burden of Evelyn's pain no longer weighed on her mind.

She felt the doctor lay a reassuring hand upon her shoulder part of her felt a jolt rush through her body at the small act of bodily contact. She didn't know why but the reassurance felt good the kind words spoken by the doctor soothed her soul like a lullaby soothes a child. She raised her head looking into the grey eyes of the doctor and gave him a small smile. She couldn't feel the doctor's emotions or hear his thoughts but the smile he gave her just sent her so many emotions that she could feel for herself. Happiness, relief, perhaps a small glimmer of affection.

All of these things were felt through the comfort provided. "Thank you doctor..." Soo Young said placing her hand over his and giving him a small smile. "Perhaps Evelyn does need time...I shouldn't have assumed that Evelyn would just retake me into her life." Soo Young said. The doctor's hand was warm in her own only solidifying the comfort that she felt from him. "It's good to know I'm among friends especially one like you." Soo Young said.

(Sorry for the long wait ^-^)

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #8
"Of course, Chief Seung," said Lucan, his face serene in its exotic and kind way whilst she lay her hand on top of his. "I am very happy to see you have returned. When news reached me that you were lost in combat, I felt... helpless in how I was not even given the chance to bring you back from the place where the winds cease to blow." A native expression of his, he realised, meaning where death awaited all.

"I try to be there as much as I can for all of my patients, even if it proves hard lately given all the casualties and injuries." He glanced down over her body, and he came to chuckle as if he came to a sudden realisation; as if he was checking her for blood rather than the figure of her womanly form. "Then again, you are not really my patient, given that you are out here instead of inside the centre. Which reminds me... have you gone through a physical examination since you returned to us? I would imagine you came here in your Valkyrie yes? A long flight, I reckon?"

Withdrawing his hand, he produced a medical tricorder from one of the pockets in his lab coat and began to scan her where she sat against the tree. Her readings were normal, unsurprisingly, if still a bit malnourished and dehydrated. Common after long flights. "Make sure you eat and drink a lot the next couple of days and you will feel better. Not only based on what your body needs, but I can but imagine what kind of cravings you may have developed once you finally found your way back here."

That said, Lucan had set the conversation upon a path that may just lead to words of other cravings needed to be sated, dictating the turn of the conversation three steps ahead. It would serve his plans to have another wolf in his pocket, since Evelyn was grounded and Nightmare did not quite... committed to him.

Alas... he was foiled.

"Dr. Nicander. Chief Seung," came a highly familiar male voice. The voice of Captain Ives, Commanding Officer of the USS Theurgy. There was concern in the Chameloid's tone, looking at the scene and thinking Soo Young was being scanned for more serious reasons. "Anything wrong?"

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #9
Soo Young felt a fluttering feeling in her stomach as he mentioned his concern at her loss. Part of her was shamed that she didn't feel the same towards Evelyn's mental break down over her loss. But to know that someone had shown some concern for her, Someone who hadn't just given up on her and decided to move on. Someone who remembered her and kept her in mind rather than try to leave any memory of her behind. The guilt she felt for Evelyn slowly built into a small seedling of resentment. If Evelyn had truly loved her would she have tried to banish her from thought so easily?

As the doctor spoke again looking over her body as if checking for any injuries she smiled. "I haven't had much time to come in for a check up my apologies doctor. I'll be sure to come in so you can perform a more thorough examination." Soo Young said smiling she sat still as he began to scan her using his tricorder. "The flight was quite long yes, It was quite uncomfortable flying in that tiny cockpit for so long." Soo Young said. The Valkyrie wasn't exactly small but sitting in the same position for so long had left bruises in quite uncomfortable places. Thankfully they'd just been bruises and hadn't turned into bed sores otherwise she had no doubt she'd be lying right next to Evelyn in one of those biobeds.

As Lucan told her to eat and drink properly for the next few days she smiled and nodded "I'll be sure to do that doctor." She said. She blushed as he mentioned her cravings, So far it was true she did have cravings though now that she'd been able to properly satisfy her bodily needs only one remained. One that she didn't really understand, When she was younger and serving upon the USS Sydney she'd learned about a life stage called the phase from the ship's Vulcan science officer. A stage in every Betazoid female's life where their sexual drive kicked into overdrive. She'd recalled her saying that her human and betazoid genetics could make any number of changes including bringing about the Phase quicker due to the increase in sexual hormones felt by humans at a young age.

Needless to say for the last few weeks her sexual drive had been quite active, It had made itself evident with her behavior with SCO Miles when they were bathing in the springs shortly after she'd arrived. Even now the doctor seemed more and more attractive than he already seemed. She was saved from her hormones however as she heard a familiar voice. She looked over as the Captain approached a look of concern upon his face. "C-Captain..." She quickly got to her feet giving him a quick salute. "No sir Doctor Nicander was just performing a physical examination I neglected to receive one when I arrived." Soo Young said.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #10
Stepping forth, Captain Ives looked between his CMO and the returning wolf where they sat by the tree. Dr Nicander was smiling faintly as he rose to his feet, pocketing his medical tricorder casually and extending a hand to Chief Seung in order to help her up as well. The Lone-Wolf, however, had already gotten up and given Jien a salute, one which he returned with a nod.

"The Chief shows the expected signs of bodily fatigue, dehydration and malnutrition that ought to be expected from long-term flight in one of those death-traps we keep in the Flight Hangar," said Lucan, who seemed to be in quite good health despite having had some gruelling days since the battle with the Calamity, with the treatment of all the wounded, the preservation of dying bodies in the stasis units and the establishment of the Triage Centre on the planet-side once they reached Theta Eridani IV.

Moreover, there was the accident at the morning gathering, where Lucan and one of the Harbinger's surgeons had taken care of the remains of Arcorn Neotin. Sometimes Jien Ives wondered what was the worst position to have on the Theurgy during this grave mission of theirs, being in Command of the nightmare voyage or taking care of the body count that they were piling up. When he thought about it that way, he was immensely grateful to have had Lucan as his CMO since the day the Theurgy was commissioned. Sufficed to say, the antidote for the Niga virus was only one of the more recent accomplishments in a long line of merits. For a time, Jien had even considered a romantic relationship with the Câroon, only he had stayed away since he thought it would be too much of a distraction.

"Thank you, Doctor." Jien smiled faintly with his eyes and nodded to Nicander. "I am glad to see you find the time for regular physical exams."

"Of course, Captain. Nice speech this morning. I did not fancy the ending though," said Lucan and put his tattooed hands in his pockets.

"Me neither. My heart goes out to the daughter. Make sure to let Cadet Neotin take whatever time she needs. Make sure she sees our new Chief Counsellor. The poor child has already lost her mother to the stasis graveyard, and I think she needs all the help she can get to survive this mission."

"Well, the same can be said for everyone involved," said Lucan with a cheerless smile, "yet it will be as you say, Captain. Oh, I got your message about the prisoner on the Harbinger, by the way. I will have a team ready by 1400 hrs."

"Thank you, Doctor."

"Captain," said Lucan in parting, and he nodded to Soo Young Seung too before walking back towards the Triage Centre, "Chief."

Alone with the returned Lone-Wolf, Jien Ives glanced her way. "At ease, its obvious that you are on a break so there is no need to stand on ceremony. I am heading to the Canteen for some food if you would like to accompany me." Despite the burdens on his shoulders, the death that morning and the interrogation that was due that afternoon, Jien tried to find some kind of normalcy, and lunch with some company was as good an opportunity as any. "If we are lucky, Ops have found the energy available to replicate some food. Otherwise, I am afraid we'll get field rations, which I am sure you don't fancy any more."

Walking, Jien commented on her appearance, which had undergone some chance since she touched down in the sparring arena the night before. "One could never tell you just got back from your long and lonesome flight. You cleaned up well, Chief."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #11
Soo Young watched the two carry on their conversation part of her was at a loss for what was being spoken of. For a while she'd fallen into her usual pattern of isolation not just because it was what she was used to. But because it helped put a restraint on the sexual desire brought upon by her hormone induced phase. Needless to say her old habit had effectively left her out of the loop of the going on's around both ships. She stayed silent however opting to listen to the two men speak instead. She smiled briefly at Doctor Nicander's description of a Valkyrie Fighter it likely wouldn't be wrong to assume that he wasn't a large fan of Starfleets newest brand of Starfighters.

The conversation between the two men however took a darker turn as they spoke about events that had occured earlier. She didn't have any specific details but from what she'd already heard she was able to realize that someone had been lost perhaps more than just one person. Leaving behind a daughter with no parents. She couldn't begin to wonder what it could be like to lose both of her parents in such a short time. She opened her mouth to speak on the subject but quickly closed it as they began to speak on a different subject. Something about a prisoner, part of her felt embarassed for having missed so much due to her solitary nature.

As the Doctor took his leave she offered him a small smile along with a wave. She turned her eyes toward the Captain she didn't know what to say honestly. What was there for an pilot to say to her Captain? It wasn't as if she could just start talking about the weather and she didn't know enough about current events to speak on that either. She glanced toward the Captain meeting his eyes with her own and winced a bit as her empathy kicked in at the wrong moment. That small moment where she'd felt what Captain Ives was feeling was more than enough to tell her that much had been occurred and it was all weighing on Jien's mind.  She could only hope the Captain hadn't noticed her moment of temporary discomfort.

She had rarely interacted with the Captain but the few times she'd been around him it was always a great ease upon her mind. The same commanding aura the Captain had about him existed mentally as well his thoughts seemed to dominate the space it occupied leaving her with one focus her mind and his. She'd never found a real explanation for it but as far as she was concerned the Captain's presence was a welcome one. Her train of thought was broken as Jien commented on her formality and how it wasn't really necessary at this time. "Sorry sir it comes from being born and raised on a ship, It just becomes a habit after a while." Soo Young said she lowered her hand from the salute.

With the offer of food Soo Young nodded "I'd love to accompany you." Soo Young said rations wasn't high up on her list of favorite things to eat anymore. If those damned replicators still didn't work she'd be willing to pull the reactor out of her Valkyrie just to get some juice into the damn thing. Anything to avoid eating anymore dried or artificial nutrition bars provided in the standard issue field rations. As the captain commented on her appearance she blushed "Thank you sir the same could be said about yourself." Soo Young said smiling faintly.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #12
Realising that the last time Chief Seung had seen him, he had been covered in sweat and dirt, bare-chested and savage after the sparring match that she had interrupted, he chuckled faintly where he walked by her side. "Thank you in kind, then. Even if I can change my appearance at will, I still do have to wash off the dirt. It still ticks to whatever texture I might wear, be it skin or the textile of this mimicked uniform. The sweat as well, since it is something I have made myself do for sake of being like you humans. To sweat, that is."

The grass underneath their shoes was green yet dry. Parched from the light of binary suns, and with the number of people around, much of the valley had become trampled, hard mud. The ways between the Canteen, the Engineering Assembly area, the Thermal Springs Lounge and the camps of modular shelters had become so trampled that they resembled thin roads across the open area.

"Pardon me, I was only half-correct about you being human," he amended as he led them to the Canteen, "Point still stands. I need to clean up as much as you do. The cost, I suppose, from honing my morphogenic matrix to perfect only two Chosen Forms. Then again, my experimenting days are over, even if I do miss some of the forms I have come to used over the decades."

When it was their turn in the line, the Ops officer spotted Ives and gave him a replicated meal of potatoes, beef and peas with some gravy. When it was Chief Seung's turn, she was given a tray with assorted nutrition suppliments and a thick bar that was coated with something vaguely resembling chocolate. You could almost see how hard it was going to be to chew. The bottle of water was generously sized though, because of the heat, yet just as appealing as a bottle of water might ever be.

"Here," said Jien as they stepped away from the Canteen, having predicted this outcome when he asked her to join him. He traded his tray for hers. "It would not be fair for me to have Captain's privilege when you have not eaten anything worthwhile for quite some time. Let's find somewhere to sit."

OOC: I'm sure you can find them a spot. :)

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #13
Soo Young gave a small nod in acknowledgement to the Captain's thanks. She couldn't begin to imagine how dirt or sweat could effect someone who really never wore clothes. In her mind it brought up a good many questions, Seeing as Captain Ives mimicked his uniform instead of wearing one she wondered if he could feel everything that touched it as if it were part of his skin. Part of her wanted to reach out and touch to find out as she walked a few steps behind the Captain but a larger part of her mind suppressed such ideas reminding her that doing so would be a complete disregard for respect in chain of command not to mention personal space.

"Did you take on many forms in your youth Captain?" Soo Young asked as they continued onward. She'd only ever seen the captain take on two forms. Male and female she could only wonder what other forms he'd taken in the past. To be able to change one's appearance at will must be such an interesting ability. One moment you could be someone known to all and then become someone who doesn't know a soul in the world in an instant.

As they arrived in line at the canteen she couldn't help but frown as she received the meal she dreaded to receive. To those around her she seemed calm but inwardly she was raging. She'd spent days eating this very meal on her tray and if she had not self restraint she would likely by beating the Ops officer behind the counter unconscious with her tray while screaming an ungodly amount of profanities in his face all the while cramming said nutrition bar down his throat.

However fortunately for the officer the young Lone Wolf pilot had more restraint than most people. Giving a small nod of thanks she moved on from the counter staring down at her "Food" It surprised her however as she felt her tray being taken from her hands and being exchanged for a different one. This tray holding a much more delectable selection. She quickly directed her eyes to the Captain and opened her mouth to protest. But her words died in her throat before they could be uttered and instead she bowed her head "Thank you sir." Soo Young said.

She couldn't find it in herself to deny the meal no matter how much her dignity demanded that she do so. Soo Young began to lead them away from the main Canteen area, Even when the Theurgy had been in space she'd never eaten with most of the crew too many thoughts only served to make her lose her appetite. She'd spent most of her days dining in the hallways around the Theurgy where she could enjoy her meals in peace. She finally stopped finding shade beneath a tree and seating herself cross legged beneath it. The grass beneath the tree was still somewhat moist mainly due to the little protection the tree provided it from the blazing suns.

Soo Young patted the ground next to her. "It's more comfortable than it looks trust me." Soo Young said giving Captain Ives a small smile.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #14
At the question about whether or not he had worn many forms in his adolescent years, Captain Ives had smiled faintly and shrugged. "Only a few that I cared to make something worthwhile of. It is a lengthy ordeal to change my form below the surface so that it resembles the species I try to immitate, while the surface is easy. Results quicker to judge and correct. One only needs a mirror instead of a diagnostic table or a medical holo-camera, yet when you do find a satisfactory form, you learn over the years to memorise it too - my matrix needing less and less time to morph. Like muscle memory for humans. Subconscious process, really."

When he had been an infiltrator on Aldea, Starfleet Intelligence had - by means which he did not care to dwell upon - given him enough information to change his biology to that of the natives. It had been necessary for such a long mission, and it left him free to alter his countenance as required to get him where he needed to be. Even after all the years since then, he still had that Chosen Form in the back of his mind, like a reminder of the man he used to be. Not the Aldean, but the undiscriminating SI operative.

Their conversation fell silent at the canteen, and the silence lingered as Chief Seung led the way - taking them away from the crowd and into the remote shade of a tree. It was a comfortable silence however. As for the choice of location, he knew of her abilities, and he made no comment - accepting her wish to be away from the bulk of the crowd. After all the time she had been away, the presence of other people was likely far more overwhelming than it used to be. The former SCO, Commander Jaru, had never reported her as being a liability because of her strong empathic abilities. Rather an asset. Therefore, Ives had faith in the fact that she would eventually be able to handle the confinement of her duties aboard Theurgy. She just needed time.

"If you say so," he commented with a faint smile and sat down next to her, raising his brown eyes to look around. Where the canopy of the cluster of trees gave way to the sky, they could see some parts of the great metallic beasts that were the two landed starships. There were no people in sight, even though one could hear the presence of the two crews not far away ahead of them. Behind them, beyond a hundred meters of low foothills, towered one of the mountains - a jagged and massive wall of stone ascending towards the sky.

"How are you feeling?" he asked and looked towards her after chewing on a bite from the nutrition bar, "I hope the debriefing with Commander Renard went well, and that the heat of the Thermal Springs helped rid you from the soreness of your pilot seat. I can't even imagine how good a bath must have felt after what you went through."

Looking at her, he appreciated her permanent form as only a Chameloid could: appreciating the beauty of the finality - the results of genetic chance and heritage. It was common that he did this with most people he spoke with, like a behavioural heritage of his own that had passed down his line of unknown ancestors. Like humans with their change in adrenaline levels in some situations, or their obsolete tailbone. It made Ives wonder what primitive versions of a Chameloid might have been. Life-long questions of his, really.

Chief Seung reminded him about Asia, where he hailed from on Earth. The Asian physique was his one of his favoruites, for obvious reasons.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #15
Soo Young listened as Ives spoke about his past forms. She wondered how many different people the Captain had been before. How many identities had he held before being the man or woman he was today. "So how did you obtain this form?" Soo Young asked glancing at the Captain as she took her first bite of her meal. She closed her eyes savoring the taste of actual food instead of the mass distributed rations she'd been forced to survive on. Her eyes snapped open and her cheeks reddened as she heard a faint moan escape the back of her throat after she swallowed. "You have to mimic someone don't you?" Soo Young said trying to draw attention from her lapse in composure.

Once they'd reached the spot she had led them to she wondered if the Captain disapproved of her shy behavior. She'd strayed away from others long before she'd been lost in space. She returned his smile as he took a seat beside her. She ate in silence enjoying her meal her eyes strayed toward the captain who seemed to be looking around at their surroundings. She almost lost herself in admiring their surroundings until she heard Captain Ives ask how she felt. Soo Young smiled sadly recalling her previous encounter with Evelyn. Regardless of Dr. Nicander's talk with her she still felt some pain from the void left in her heart.

She pushed those thoughts to the back of her mind before nodding. "The briefing went very well I'm up to speed with current and past events on the Theurgy and the springs felt amazing I almost didn't want to leave." Soo Young said smiling. She was trying her best to be social. The Captain was being so kind to her and she wouldn't allow her reclusive behavior push him away. She noticed his eyes upon her but immediately she could tell that his eyes didn't hold the same lustful desire she'd seen in the eyes of some of the men she'd encountered on the Theurgy.

The Captain's gaze seemed more "Appreciative." as if viewing a piece of art. It didn't really bother her as much as she thought it should. "Umm Captain? My eyes are up here." Soo Young said cracking a small joke as the Captain continued to look her over.

(sorry not my best post ^-^)

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #16
"Not necessarily," said Jien when she asked him about the process of adapting to a new form. He noticed how much she enjoyed her food, but merely smiled faintly without comment. "I may have a template from observing someone, but the process of defining a Chosen Form takes years. Decades. Both with subconscious and actively chosen changes to it, and that goes for both the cosmetics as well as the biological adaptation. In the end, I look like neither of my two original templates, which was a woman from my youth and a man from Starfleet Academy. In the latter case, being as changes were needed quickly lest I'd wear someone else's face, I made major changes over the course of a couple of hours."

After she had reassured him that she was up to speed on current events, she must have caught him observing her physique, and Jien realised he must be tired since he lapsed so in thought. He chuckled faintly, grateful that she did not seem to have taken offence. "Pardon me," he said, "our conversation about my form led me to observing yours. I didn't mean anything by it other than it's attractive, since my studies come from my abilities. The ability to change necessitate the ability to derive physical form by observation. I suppose its a survival instinct among my species, even if I have never met another Chameloid that know anything about our origin in this galaxy. My best guess is that we observe and then adapt in order to survive, and have been doing so down the centuries."

Picking at his food, Jien looked away from her body. "As to why we are nearly extinct, I have no idea, but I am guessing that it has to do with the need for both parents to have a morphogenic matrix in order to create offspring. Being able to adapt as we can, added with space-flight, may just have led to my species dispersing across the the stars to find their own, unique forms. Finding their own lives together with species and at places where they came to feel like they belonged. Finding partners and joy despite the lack of children. Sometimes, the ability to adapt might make anyone forget who they really are."

Glancing back to Chief Seung briefly, he continued as he looked into distance, "And sometimes you do not forget, but accept that you are what you are, and try to be more for a cause greater than your own needs. For the Federation, and for Starfleet, I have ceased to seek new forms, in order to be as human as I can. For to me, being human and accepting humanity has given me cause far greater than I could ever have achieved in the futile pursuit to find my ancestors out there. I may be yet another Chameloid that aids in the extinction of my own kind by not seeking a mate that can provide a pure-blooded offspring. Yet I like to believe that helping all the species in the United Federation of Planets is a cause far nobler than to safe-guard the survival of a single, nomadic species with far lesser numbers, and that may have come to loose any identity of their own."

Pausing, Captain Ives put aside his tray. "Now, the Federation is loosing its identity as well, with the enemy taking over the lives of our leaders, and making us turn on each other. The life I have chosen, and everything I have come to believe in, and sacrificed my heritage for... may be lost. And it makes me angry. It makes me so full with ire that I cannot rest until everything is put right. Until truth, order and justice is restored to my adopted species, and the Federation that I have come to love."

Captain Ives scowled as he stared into the distance.

"Death upon this enemy of ours that think it can tear us asunder from within."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #17
Soo Young listened to Jien's explanation of adapting to a new form, Saying that she found it interesting was an understatement. It was an interesting concept to try to comprehend how a person could create a new identity just from knowing a person for a period of time. She took a spoonful of potatoes into her mouth and chewed, She looked over the captain wondering how many other people had been in his youth, What was so significant about the woman and the man he'd spoken of that made him choose them to be the templates of his current forms.

Soo Young smiled as he apologized for observing her, It's not like she really minded she waved off his apology. "It's alright sir I'm flattered you think of me that way." She said. She looked back down at her meal her smile still present on her lips, It was nice being around Jien, She didn't have a way to explain it but his air of authority just made it easier to separate her thoughts from the thoughts of others. As he spoke more about his people and how they seemed to be nearly extinct she felt a bit at a loss of words. The thought of his people slowly dying out seemed like such a sad notion but the way he seemed to describe it, Finding a place where one truly belonged and finding love with someone they felt strongly for made the thought more poetic and significantly less grim in her eyes.

Jien continued talking and moved onto a new subject more specifically about their new mission. She watched as he lay aside his tray and spoke with an air of determination towards the goal he'd set for himself and for the Theurgy's crew. The determination he held for bringing those who'd betrayed them to justice was quite uplifting. She could feel his resolve in his emotions and thoughts, The strong feeling that the man seated beside her would not falter in the face of an enemy that outnumbered and outgunned them so drastically. The way that he described his dedication to the Federation and not to his dying species only filled her with the same resolve that filled him.

"Is this what the captain feels every day?" Soo Young thought as she felt pride swelling in her chest, She didn't know if the captain felt such pride but the dedication to the Federation that Jien exhibited was more than enough to fuel her own, His dedication was hers as well every moment she stood by his side. A new emotion washed over Soo Young as Jien's lips turned downward into a scowl. It was anger, anger towards the one who seeked to manipulate the Federation for their own ends and soon enough Jien's anger had become her own. She felt her grip on her spoon tighten instinctively but caught herself before she could exhibit similar behavior to Jien's.

She instead placed her own tray down "I can't speak for the crew sir but...I'm behind you I'll follow you to whatever end our mission brings us to." Soo Young said. That was her attempt to show her own motivation towards their goals but she had never been one for motivational speaking. She blushed at her poor attempt, She'd spent most of her life avoiding people and being so charismatic was a new experience for her.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #18
Hearing the pilot speak next to him brought Jien out of his thoughts. "I know."

He turned his head to look her way, his faint smile reappearing. "I know you will. After all, you returned to us, didn't you?" Raising his hand, he lay his arm around the Chief's shoulders and clapped her opposite arm briefly - a gesture of camaraderie. "Still, it's good hearing it once in a while. Especially when it does not sound like empty words."

Yet his hand came to linger as he felt her warmth through the sleeve of her uniform - touch being another part of his species inborn observations. He had long learned to keep his actions within human social parameters, but after the battle with the Calamity and the loss of so many officers on the Theurgy, the closeness of someone seemed such a rare treat that he was disinclined to remove his hand. Images of Nicole Howards flared to life before his eyes, how she had pretended to fix his sonic shower and adjusted it to vibrate off her own clothes. She had ended up hurting him since he had made his own form mimic clothes, and she had been devastated. It was actually quite humorous in retrospect. And the sex that followed had pushed the memories of Niga far back from his thoughts. Vivid imagery of claiming her against the glass wall of the stall, and then upon the floor - bombarded with cascading water from above. Then... there had been the argument afterwards, and they had separated in discord.

At least they had met one more time before the Calamity hologram shot her down on his Bridge. She had come to him in the morning on the day of the attack, and they had set aside their differences, resolved their argument, and while in his female form, they had spent a passionate time in his Captain Quarter's bath. The second time they had been together had been as good as the first, only different because Nicole had wanted to learn to know his other form intimately. Fingers and tongues, lips and palms coursing over wet skin, gripping, thrusting and undulating. Water slopping over the edge of the bath. That was how he wanted to remember Nicole, yet the image that ceaselessly came back to him was how she had stepped in the line of fire. Protected him by forfeiting her own life. If it had not been for her, Jien would be dead, and the mission would solely have rested upon Captain Declan Vasser's shoulders.

Thoughts of Nicole - heated, conflicted and mournful - had made his arm stay around Soo Young Seung. He removed it as if he had been hurting her.

"I am sorry, I just..." he rubbed a hand over his face to try and get his mind together, picking up the pieces from the gutter and the fires of battle, "I did not mean to..."

The realisation of what the Chief might have experienced through his thoughts stole away both breath and words.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #19
Soo Young blushed as Jien placed an arm around her shoulders. Even though she knew it wasn't meant to be romantic she couldn't help but wish it was. Perhaps it was just her genetics talking for her, when she was a child she remembered being told that due to her human and betazoid genetics not everything would be as they should. One of the things the USS Sydney's CMO had warned her of was a special period in each Betazoid's life known as the Phase. A period in every female Betazoid's life in which their sex drive is quadrupled. He'd told her that due to human genetics in her DNA and the fact that humans felt sexual hormones much sooner in their life it was a possibility that the Phase would come much sooner for her.

It took a few moments of silence for her to realize that Jien hadn't removed his arm from around her shoulders, Not that she minded but it did fuel her romantic imagines however, His current thoughts did nothing to stop it either in fact they seemed to pour even more fuel on the fire. She could almost visualize the images that Jien was thinking about, She blush only darkened more images flashed before her eyes. She shut her eyes to make the images clearer she didn't have actual memories to work with but the thoughts and emotions were more than enough for her to paint a detailed picture in her mind. Biting her lip she said nothing to interrupt his flow of thoughts and emotions, She didn't want it to stop she felt guilty for exploiting his emotions like this but her body and a more dominant part of her mind refused to allow her to stop.

But soon the thoughts began to become mixed as new emotions began to pour into her mind, Sadness and mourning, Feelings of loss and regret. The pain felt from loss of someone important. She looked up broken out of her own mental trance as he removed his arm apoligizing. Soo Young immediately felt the cool air wash over the place Jien's arm had occupied. The feeling made her feel empty she shook her head "It's alright...really sir." She looked toward Jien a small smile on her face. "We all have our moments of weakness, With all you do for use, keeping us strong and united I think you deserve one as well." Soo Young said placing a hand on his arm. She knew loss as well she'd lost her mother to those shadows that manipulated the Federation and she had just today lost someone who had held a dear place in her heart.

Soo Young was silent for a moment as she removed her hand and instead brought her knees up to her chest wrapping her arms around them as she looked out at the scenery around them. She reflected on what she had felt from Jien's thoughts and emotions and she was shocked to realize how much he'd experienced and yet he still found the strength to lead them all even in through these hard times and trials. "Was she important to you?" Soo Young finally asked her voice a bit soft. She didn't know if she was touching upon a delicate topic but to have felt all the emotions that Jien felt toward the woman she'd seen in his thoughts she just had to ask.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #20
Gratified that the Lone-Wolf had not taken offence at his lapse of thoughts, Jien took a calming breath of ease as Soo Young smiled to him and touched his arm. "Thank you for understanding, Chief Seung," he said and cleared his throat, trying to give her a smile in turn.

Being in the position he was, he could not afford to make such bad impressions. To have halfway embraced her and subjected her to such inappropriate musings, and then shown her one of the many scars upon his soul, it was hardly the kind of image he wanted to uphold. If anyone of the crew that did not sympathise with their current course of action learned, they might exploit it in mutiny. It was not like the entire crew was convinced it was the right thing to return to the Federation only to be court marshalled. Even if they proved themselves to not be traitors, they had destroyed too many starships and killed too many fellow Starfleet officers. The outcry of the surviving families would not be ignored. The demand for punishment too loud.

Jien knew the risk, yet he meant to put things right nonetheless.

"I do not know," he said when asked if Nicole Howard, perhaps nameless to Soo Young depending on how much she had caught on to, had meant much to him. He watched the fighter pilot as she had changed position, obscuring her Asian bodily form for his eyes by hugging her knees. The profile of her face remained to see, yet he felt he had no right to gaze upon her despite how she may draw his eye and attention, for now he spoke of someone he'd lost. Instead, he looked out towards the scenery like she did, and it would seem they were alone where they sat behind the treeline, so it would seem no one had seen him embrace Soo Young. All personnel had finished eating beyond the trees, returning to duties and repairs.

"We never got to learn if what lay between us had been important; the time too brief for us to know if there was aught more than mere attraction. She was... damaged from the Niga Incident, just as I was. Her perhaps more than I. We sought comfort in each other; relearned what real attraction and emotion was. Without the virus affecting our minds and making us slaves to our own desires. We were... intimate... by our own choice. Yet we never got so far as to see if there was was more beyond our... physical compatibility. I do think, however, that there was... potential."

Looking towards Soo Young's profile again, finding the study more rewarding than the quiet scenery behind the treeline, Jien leaned back and propped himself up on his elbows in the grass. Leaning back thus, he was rewarded by the sight of her back and waist, leading back to her derriére. Since the Chief had said she did not mind, and understood why he looked, he continued to do so. The problem... was that the memory of Nicole in the shower and in the bath had made the nature of his studies else than that of aesthetic observation. Notions of what her form looked like without clothing could not be ignored. Nor what it would be like to wrap his hands around that waist or those hips while he...

"I..." He cleared his throat again, jaws working. What was he supposed to say? "Apparently I am missing her."

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #21
Soo Young felt her heart flutter as Jien smiled back at her, She turned her head to gaze out at the landscape before her as she tried to sort out her thoughts, "Of course sir." Soo Young said in response to his thanks, She was silent for a few moments before speaking once more "If it's not too informal while we're off duty you can just call me Soo Young. Or if you prefer Soo...It's what a few of my friends call me." Soo Young said. This wasn't entirely true as only members of her family had ever called her Soo and even then she could count those family members on one hand.

As Jien continued to speak of the woman from his thoughts she kept quiet preferring to listen to him talk. It had been very rare for her to have spoken to Captain Ives back when things were relatively normal back on the Theurgy. For the longest time she'd believed that as a fighter pilot she wasn't allowed to interact with any of her superiors on a personal level, Or rather she didn't feel comfortable doing so as she felt that in doing so she was breaking some unwritten Starfleet mandate. But as she continued to speak and interact with Jien she was steadily becoming comfortable with him. She still saw him as her commanding officer but now she could see him as more than that.

She frowned as he told her that the time they'd shared together was too brief to determine if what he and the woman had was special. His emotions said more however, The way she could feel slight sadness and regret radiating off him. The intimacy the two had shared, The passion they had experienced together made her a bit envious. Her eyes widened a bit at the thought that had popped up in her mind she blinked for a moment a bit shocked that her mind had allowed her to think in such a way. How could she even harbor the thought of being envious of someone who had risked their life to save the man sitting beside her.

She pulled her thoughts out the gutter shutting out the envy that had taken up residence in her mind, For once she welcomed the thoughts of another as she allowed Jien's thoughts intertwine with her own. What she found was not what she had expected, She blushed craning her head as she found her mind filled with thoughts directed toward herself, Thoughts of her naked and images of herself with Captain Ives with his hands wrapped around her waist. The thought was so detailed in her mind she could almost feel Jien's hands on her body if she thought about it enough. Soon her mind began to drift onward building small fantasies from what had been seen.

As he spoke again she let out a small squeak as she was broken out of her fantasy. She looked toward him as he mentioned missing the woman and was silent. What could she say to that, What could she do that could ever make up for the loss of someone he may have held dear to him. The thought of it made her mind wander back to what had occurred earlier in the day. The silence continued as Soo Young's thoughts focused on Evelyn her lover, or former if one took current events into account. She bit her lip as the void in her heart began to ache she'd drifted alone for 2 weeks to find the woman she had loved broken in more ways than one.

"I know how it feels...Losing someone hurts doesn't it?" Soo Young said before she could stop herself. She bit her lip and looked down at her boots why had she went and said that. Evelyn was still alive at least she didn't know a damn thing about how Jien felt about losing the woman he'd cared about. "I'm sorry...I shouldn't have said that." Soo Young said quickly hoping to make up for any offense taken.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #22
"That is quite alright... Soo," said Jien, justifying the breach of protocol since they were quite evidently off duty. Again, it seemed like the halfblood Betazoid had not taken offence - or not noticed - the way his thoughts had been led astray. Her words begged the obvious question, since she had him at a disadvantage. He did not know of whom she spoke when she said she could sympathise with how he felt.

"Did you lose someone in the fighting after we left Earth?" he asked quietly, realising that Soo Young had probably just come to learn of that loss. Perhaps that was why he had spotted her outside the Triage Centre, where she might have learned from Dr. Nicander that someone in particular did not make it. After asking his question, he felt that he could not be still any longer. Restlessness came with the position, and he got to his feet next to her. Back straight, he lowered a hand to help her up. "Come, walk with me."

Listening to what she had to say about his question, Jien chose a path at random through the trees - leading them along the edge of the foothills to the mountains. Scarce and odd trees surrounded them, the undergrowth bare and covered in gravel - the volcanic region not allowing for much wild grass so close to the slopes. Stone and mud lay beneath their feet, and the binary suns cast their light through the canopy of the trees. Most of the wildlife had been driven off by the landing of the two starships in the valley, yet there was still trails of small ones living in the bedrock. The equivalence of rodents and birds, Jien reckoned.

Alone, they were sharing heartache before their duties would resume, and Jien did treasure the opportunity to postpone thoughts about the grim voyage ahead. Towards the end of her talking, Jien turned to face Soo, unblinking brown eyes looking into hers while he listened intently. Yet again, his eyes came to wander, since the light was now different as it caressed her appearance.

OOC: I think it was two months and not two weeks. :)

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #23
Soo Young took Jien's offered hand and pulled herself up to her feet uttering a small thank you as she followed him. Had she really lost anyone? The question was making her think more than she thought it would. Her mind strayed to thoughts of Evelyn, She felt the familiar ache in her heart return she had lost her in a way. As she thought more her mind finally came upon the subject of her mother the thought hurt more than it had to think of Evelyn's loss. She'd been contacted by her mother during their escape from earth, She could remember the way her mother begged Soo Young to turn herself in insisting that she would do anything in her power to protect Soo Young from prosecution.

Soo Young had refused and in return her mother shunned her calling her a traitor and claiming that her real daughter was dead. Soo Young closed her eyes biting her lip hard enough to make it bleed. The memory hurt more than she thought it would much more. She reached across her body gripping her arm tightly as she walked alongside Jien. "No...Not unless you count heartbreak I suppose..." Soo Young said closing her eyes. "My reunion with Evelyn didn't go exactly as I had hoped..." Soo Young said quietly. She sighed as she struggled to speak the next sentence "And...I spoke with my mother shortly after we left earth...She told me that I'm dead in her eyes...Just a traitor to the Federation so I suppose in a way I did lose her..." Soo Young said.

She looked toward Jien trying to place a smile on her face but failing. "I'm sorry sir...Here I am acting as if I really understand when I really don't..." Soo Young said looking down at the ground as they walked. "I feel like I do though...It hurts so much to think of what's been lost even if it might not be lost forever..." Soo Young said. As Jien stopped she did as well for a moment she was hesitant to look him in the eyes but found the courage to do so. She slowly raised her head her eyes taking in Jien's appearance from head to toe for once taking in his appearance instead of him taking in hers. When she reached his eyes she noticed that once more he was observing her with that same look of interest she'd seen earlier.

She felt a slight blush grace her cheeks. She had said she didn't mind him appreciating her body but the interest he showed in her seemed to be a bit more than just artistic admiration now. "S-Sir?" Soo Young said. She felt her shyness resurfacing but to be honest she didn't want it to she wanted to find the courage to talk to him. To say things she seldom said she kept her mouth closed as she thought back to how bold she had been when she had spent time with Miles at the springs.

"D-Do you like my body?" Soo Young asked she fought back the blush that wanted to darken on her cheeks, Mentally she was scolding herself for saying such a thing not because it was inappropriate but more for the reason of thinking what she'd said was "Stupid" or "Embarassing"

OOC: Oops  :D I'll change it.

Re: EPISODE 03: Unconquerable Soul [Chapter 02: Reunion]

Reply #24
When the fighter pilot had spoken of momentary losses, or the hopes of such since the mission might restore her loved ones to her, Jien had merely said the obvious. "We have the truth on our side, even if we might not know the full extent of the conspiracy. Once the word gets out and we make people listen, our families and friends in the Federation will be the first to doubt and question the fabricated stories that Starfleet Command is spreading about us."

When they had come to a stop, and their words ran out, the atmosphere in the forest changed. Looks were exchanged, and it was evident that there were not merely innocent words between them. Soo Young may have been the first to give voice and words to it, yet the premonition had been there from the moment they had sat down to eat. Plenty had been conveyed through thoughts, and Jien did not care if the pilot's empathic abilities may have affected him, or if the mutual attraction stemmed from the different losses they both had suffered. Did it matter if they merely might seek comfort in each other?

To Jien it might, since he could not afford to be pinned in the eyes of mutineers to fraternise with his crew. Hence, he was hesitant. "Yes," he said with great meaning, for her body held the native characteristics of his adopted part of Earth - the Asian form well known and greatly apprechiated. He could not deny being drawn to the idea of experiencing it more intimately, yet it may be for the wrong reasons - no romantic attraction being involved.

"Dangerously so," he said quietly, yet she may already have derived the reasons why he could not take the first step.

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