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Topic: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces  (Read 746 times) previous topic - next topic

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Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
POKER FACES
STARDATE 57607.55
MARCH 30, 2381
2100 HRS

[ Lt Evoras | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Not Invented Here ] attn: @fiendfall @Fife @Numen

The call from Commander Hathev had been unexpected, late yesterday, but Evoras could appreciate the probable reasons she had been invited to the event. Cross was to be there, and over the last couple of weeks they had developed an amicable working relationship... though, often, based upon exasperation at the ongoing repairs and the crews responsible. Less thrilling prospects involved Hathev herself and another counsellor, Ensign Seren. Both were the exact sorts of Vulcans who could be relied upon to treat her with suspicion and disdain... though there was a better-than-usual chance that they would be able to see past their preconceptions, given their experiences both in Counselling and with Commander Cross.

She hoped.

The ritual in question was a social one - another anomaly for her - but it had been several years since she had participated. A test of logical deduction amidst uncertain variables, as well as ongoing interaction with and probing of one's peers in that environment. Another reason for her to both want to avoid it and accept that her socialisation had suffered a great deal lately. Ida was her only real friend aboard, these days, and the Andorian deputy was almost impossible to pry out of her routine. If she only interacted with people in a professional setting her health could well deteriorate.

So, to the holodecks Evoras dutifully trooped. She was the first to arrive, and so started the program. Vulcans had been engaging in this particular exercise for the last couple of centuries or so, and while the environs varied according to custom or necessity, they were often embarked upon in their traditional locale. In this case, she chose such an establishment, the felted tables filling in to the large, open room. The lighting was dim and close, but lights with conical shades hung relatively low over each table to keep them brightly illuminated.

An extended counter ran along one wall, decorated with bottles of spirits from a hundred worlds. The custodians and other participants would not be filled in by this particular instance of the program - they were to engage with the scenario alone.

Evoras retrieved a peaked transparent green visor and a steaming mug of Hell tea (still partial to the new blend introduced to her by Ms O'Riley) before returning to the main table picked out for them. The steam coiled towards the light in a twisting white stream, as she tucked some of her wayward hair behind one ear before pulling the cap down to shade her eyes from the harsh light. A deck of cards materialised at her elbow, and the small trenches along the edges of the table filled in with circular tokens.

She shuffled the deck with a sharp snap while she waited - which wasn't for long. Evoras inclined her head in greeting, before gesturing to the empty seats at the table with the deck as a whole and then flicking individual cards face-down one at a time to the other Vulcans.

"Five-card stud, deuces wild... ante up."
  • Last Edit: November 27, 2019, 05:20:18 PM by Top Hat
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

  • Numen
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • " I'm trying to make science here!"
  • Awards: Awarded to a writer who has produced graphics for the sim in a consistent and exemplary manner, be it making character images for applicants or graphics for the site as a whole. Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to the main contributing writers in a humorous scene or situation that stands out way above the norm in terms of inducing laughter for the readers. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #1
[Ensign Seren | Seren Personal Quarters > Holodeck 03 | Deck 15 > Deck 21 | Vector 1 > Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Complying with tradition ]
[Show/Hide]
att: @Top Hat @Fife @fiendfall


His Savensu had summoned him to attend a ritual and Seren had been able only to acquiesce. So he had adjusted his customary routine to adequately prepare for the event. After all, although he knew the tradition theoretically and had been a witness of it a couple of times, he had never partaken in it before. As with any baptism of fire, it deserved that he devote a great deal of detail to the whole process.

So, he groomed himself with particular diligence, paying careful attention to even out the length of his hair and spending time to ensure that no single hair exceeded 0.3 centimeters in length. Once his head was properly shaved, he replicated a new uniform and clothed himself with the utmost attention, ensuring that no rebellious wrinkles spoiled his neat appearance before he placed the combadge exactly in the statutory placement over his chest. Lastly, he unlocked one of the drawers next to his bed and extracted a single golden pip. As he rolled the small ornament between his fingers, he realized that this was the first time he had fastened it to his clothes since he had come out of the ice. The occasion well deserved it.

Before he abandoned the room, he spent a few minutes to check the condition of the two plants that cohabited with him there. Their status was overall satisfactory, although one of them still displayed the detrimental effects of the treatment to which it had been subjected. However, Lyras had assured him that it would restore its initial leafiness in the future. Ultimately, he approached the replicator to materialize some edible seeds. As he had researched, it was common to consume small portions of food in some forms of the ritual. The technical name of such food pieces was 'snacks'. From the long list of the most common ones, he had selected that leguminous variety since it was the most suited to the dietary preference of the greatest number of those attending without entailing a high risk of arterial obstruction.

The replicator provided him with a russet bag that featured a simplified depiction of the Arachis Hypogaea seed that, for some reason he could not fathom, portrayed a broad human grin. Seren wrinkled his nose a bit as he attempted to convey a meaning to that stylization of the vegetable. However, he desisted in such endeavour when he realized that nothing related to a food whose common name was erroneous could be logic: they were neither nuts nor peas, and yet they were clearly designated as such under the illustration dancing feet. He had to accept it as it was in its incoherence.

With the bag firmly secured under his right arm and the expression measurably restrained, Seren headed to the nearest transporter room.





Barely a few minutes later the door of holodeck 3 opened in front of him, revealing a colourful setting, albeit with no other people than Lieutenant Evoras. Seren barely knew the other Vulcan, whereas both had served on board the Theurgy for almost the same time span and the fact that he had shallowly surveyed her profile, ultimately they had scarcely met face to face. This fact and the formal circumstances that surrounded them only encouraged that the young man behave as correctly as possible. Therefore, before he deposited the bag of wrongly termed nuts on the table, he raised his left hand in the traditional greeting. "Dif-tor heh smusma" he solemnly added just before he sat down on Evoras' right. In front of him a bowl of plastic and an extremely saturated yellow material take shape and Seren proceeded to pour the contents of the bag into it methodically.




Savensu → teacher
Dif-tor heh smusma → long life and prosper
  • Last Edit: November 28, 2019, 04:54:03 PM by Numen
Lt. JG Khorin Douglas [Show/Hide]
Lt. Izar Bila [Show/Hide]
Ensign Seren [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to a player in recognition of their willingness and ability to put their character through extraordinary personal hardship, be it suffering through sickness or personal crisis, through which the writer contributed superb posts relevant to the situa Awarded to the writers of an erotic scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of emotion, adherence to character, atmosphere and steaminess. Awarded to the main contributing writers in an action scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of pace, thrill, scope and stakes. Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #2
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Corridors Outside Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @fiendfall @Numen @Top Hat
[Show/Hide]Cross glanced at Hathev, the Theurgy's Chief Counsellor walking next to him as they made their way through the corridors towards the holodeck. Cross had been happy when Hathev had initially suggested spending the evening together, the former hybrid looking forward to spending time with the woman who, following a series of unexpected events which at times had bordered on insanity, had wormed her way into his heart. Cross felt a sense of calm as he glanced at Hathev, the calm laced with a good deal of affection. He also felt a streak of irritation, the diminutive ship's counsellor having left out certain details of her plans for the evening until after he had agreed. Part of Cross suspected that had been Hathev's plan from the very beginning, the counsellor knowing him all too well after the events which had unfolded five days previous.

"When you suggested spending the evening together, I didn't expect it to involve being stuck in a hajari room full of Vulcans." Cross grumbled, his pale eyes peering down at Hathev from the corner of his eyes. "Well... not more than two Vulcans, at least." With those words, Cross swung his arm wide, lightly brushing Hathev's hand with his own. For the briefest moment, he sensed Hathev, the calm serenity of the woman seeming unshakable, though Cross knew otherwise. In her defense though, that had been his fault. He also sensed a certain level of satisfaction through he brief contact, Hathev having expressed her belief that interaction with other Vulcans would benefit the emotionally unstable former hybrid. Cross was well aware that Hathev would be able to sense his undisguised affection through the brief touch, as well as the mild irritation. She would also likely sense some level of amusement from Cross, the tactical officer doubting whether Hathev knew of Evoras' unconventional nature. He would not be the only non-traditional Vulcan at the poker table today.

Cross glanced as Hathev again as they neared the doors to the holodeck, his pale gaze studying the other Vulcan's features. "It would probably be best not to let Seren find out about this." Cross said softly, gently brushing Hathev's hand again. "The stuffy haja would probably have a hajari stroke if he sees you making googly eyes at a riolozhikaik mutt like me!" Cross chuckled again, both at the mental image of Seren's face trying to maintain it's serenity as his mind erupted in catastrophic disbelief, and at the stern look of indignation which Hathev directed his way, though the contact of her hand with his told him her displeasure was only skin-deep.

riolozhikaik

The Vulcan word felt strange on Cross' tongue, so different was it from both the Federation Standard and Kardasi which he was accustomed to. He had begun to try and familiarize himself with some Vulcan words, both for the fact that he was growing increasingly closer to one of the languages native speakers, as well as for the added bonus of being able to insult Seren in the man's native tongue.

Was it illogical? Oh, probably. But it was going to be fun.

Letting his hand fall away from Hathev's, Cross pulled his gaze away from her and faced the doors before pressing the button which sent them hissing open. Pausing to allow Hathev to enter first, Cross' eyes took in their surroundings as he follow close on her heels. Evoras and Seren were both present and seated at a table, Evoras shuffling a deck of cards with a peaked green visor atop her head. The sight made Cross grin slightly as he nodded a greeting to his fellow tactical officer before turning his attention to Seren and giving another nod. "Evoras. Seren."

Turning and making his way to the bar, Cross poured two coffees from a cafetiere which sat on the bar before returning to the table where the others sat. Cross placed one coffee before Hathev, then took his seat and sipped his own. It was only as Evoras started explaining what they would be playing that it occurred to Cross that he might have made a mistake, his eyes briefly flitting between Hathev and Seren as he tossed his ante into the center of the table and took up his cards.


Kardasi Translation:
Hajari - Fucking
Haja - Fuck

Vulcan Translation:
riolozhikaik - Illogical

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #3
[ Lt. Cmdr. Hathev | Corridors Outside Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @Fife

Hathev's reasoning for arranging such an event was purely logical: it was a continuation of Cross' Vulcan education, an opportunity for cross-departmental socialising between others of their species. Furthermore, although this was neither the primary goal nor indeed even a major motivation, it would provide a setting wherein the divisions between Seren and Cross, as had been established during their previous meetings, might be eased. Although her affiliation with Cross was only unofficial, she was nevertheless aware that both counsellor and patient had found their sessions somewhat trying, and in her capacity as Chief Counsellor it befit her to assist in the smoothing of such a thing where possible.

Of course, she had no other motivations for wishing the relationship between the two men eased, as such a thing would be unprofessional. She neither expected nor required a boy not even sharing her genetic coding to approve of her actions or company.  Such a thing was hardly necessary.

Should it be proffered, however, it might be appreciated.

Thus, the meeting had been arranged. It was, after all, purely logical.

Under normal circumstances Hathev would have arrived three minutes early that she might initiate the correct program and arrange the table correctly to receive her invited guests; however the Vulcan accompanying her to Holodeck 3 had rather dashed those intentions. On reflection, perhaps concealing the true nature of the evening from him had been less than prudent, as on discovery of the fact they were to have company Cross had become markedly recalcitrant. Nevertheless, she had foreseen a 78% chance of outright refusal to attend had she imparted her intentions any earlier, and given such a refusal would have been made on purely illogical grounds she saw fit to simply omit the pertinent details until an opportune moment.

Such a decision had cost her several minutes, but not Cross' attendance, and thus she still considered the outcome to be a success, if only in part.

'I am more than aware of your expectations,' she said in response to Cross' grumbling. 'Just as I am aware that, despite your insistence to the contrary, this evening will prove beneficial for you.' She caught his eye, a sly glint in her own. 'If not outright enjoyable.'

The touch, when it came, was still new enough to prove almost unexpected, despite extrapolation from prior evidence pointing to its continued appearance. Physical contact remained a rare occurrence in Hathev's life, as it had been throughout her entire existence; for one to initiate such a thing so casually, so gently, almost as if in passing... Yet this was nothing when compared to the realisation that she did not altogether dislike it.

Curious. A subject for further study, perhaps.

The emotional transference she received from Cross was no longer the barely-contained turbulence of yore; the feelings received were muted and mild, yet Hathev could still parse their meaning. There was a warmth there she recognised from her own more unguarded moments.

For a moment, she considered chasing his hand with her own -- for purposes of analysis, of course. The entrance to the holodeck neared, however, and Cross' comments on Seren required attention, and thus she dispelled such whims in favour of a more professional demeanour.

'My ocular organs have never been the slightest googly,' she said sternly. It was not an adjective with which she was entirely familiar, and yet from the way in which Cross used the word she was confident in her assessment. 'Furthermore, lying is illogical, Commander,' she admonished.

Yet there was wisdom in his words. She did not wish to undermine any potential acquaintances that might be formed as a result of tonight's festivities with distractions over her own private life, which remained, of course, completely irrelevant.

Thus she relented somewhat: 'I see no reason for any announcement. Perhaps a judicious use of discretion is called for.' An archness overcame her, and she looked up at the man to her side. 'I will take it under advisement. You are Tactical Chief, are you not?'

It was only as they continued that she realised Cross had spoken in Vulcan. The knowledge resonated somewhere amongst her ribs, along with a thought that was quite riolozhikaik in its own right.

No, she was merely pleased to hear Cross embracing more of his heritage. That was a reasonable response, after all. And she was nothing if not reasonable.

She entered the holodeck the image of professionalism, crossing the threshold first as befit her position as organiser of the meeting and maintaining a correct 45 centimetre distance between herself and her colleague at all times. Lieutenant Evoras and Ensign Seren were already present and seated beside one another; Hathev chose the chair to Seren's right and arranged herself within.

'Apologies for my tardiness,' she said; no doubt Seren would bristle at the unnecessary colloquialism, but Hathev was not familiar with Lieutenant Evoras. Thus she would err on the side of politeness until she saw reason to do otherwise.

Cross had not yet seated himself, but Hathev saw no reason for concern and thus busied herself with more pressing duties. The table had already been arranged correctly, complete with a bowl of legumes she recognised as the Earth variety Arachis Hypogaea. A pleasant addition.

Such arrangements were of a duty which should have been Hathev's, had she not been delayed. Her own mistake, nevertheless it was unfortunate that it had been foisted upon another due to her own inadequacy as host. She could only anticipate that such a thing would not be held against her by either of her guests.

Finally, Cross returned to the table, seating himself in the final space and offering her a beverage -- the reason for his delay, no doubt. It somewhat contradicted his earlier desire to operate in a clandestine fashion, and she had not intended to spurn the tea already laid out upon the table, yet the aroma of coffee emanating from the cup was persuasive in itself. She nodded her thanks, and took a sip.

It was not prepared exactly to her preferred specifications, yet it was apparent an effort to do so had been made. It was an effort that was appreciated, and which required some effort of her own not to express such a thing with another glance at the donor.

Lieutenant Evoras initiated the evening's activities, designating herself dealer in the process; Hathev was content with this development. She was not unfamiliar with the game, of course, but could boast little experience, and none from recent years. It had been an activity chosen with her guests' enjoyment in mind, rather than her own; for these purposes it served perfectly.

Accordingly she took up her own cards, and prepared for the recreational undertaking.
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor
"Logic without ethics is no logic at all." [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer
"Live fast, die stupid." [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Holoprogram Designer
"Envy isn't your colour, babe." [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #4
[ Lt Evoras | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Not Invented Here ] attn: @fiendfall @Fife @Numen

Seren produced snacks, Cross produced a pair of coffees for himself and Hathev. A curious development; most Vulcans she knew disdained the beverage, only exceptions like Cross finding enjoyment in it (and that likely explained by his less fortunate upbringing). The coils of steam from the various hot drinks around the table formed ephemeral pillars under the harsh light over the table, emulating the tobacco smoke from what must have been the poker halls of old Earth.

The particular challenge of engaging in this particular activity with one's average Vulcan (insofar as such a thing existed) was that they were all capable of keeping track of which cards were where to a reasonable degree of accuracy - while they would only see forty percent of the deck in any given game, the number of cards visible to the entire table meant that there was little point banking on statistical vagaries in order to win each hand.

Evoras herself had drawn a deuce as her first face-up card, but thanks to it being a wildcard it may as well have been an ace. As such, the first bet was not hers; she had the strongest start possible, despite the card underneath being a seven. She herself favoured an aggressive stance regardless. When the bet passed to her, she chipped in. "Raise," she said simply, coolly regarding her peers.

She was making a particular effort to keep her face still, though not because of the game. She knew that any microexpression would be picked up in short order by the counsellors, and she would far rather make the effort to contain herself than be drawn into a conflict over philosophy. Hathev in particular may already know from which monastery and seminary she hailed, but there was no need to accelerate matters if she hadn't already read her file.

She decided that there was no particular person here whom she wished in particular to beat - rather, she wanted to be the last person standing. Evoras would never admit that Cross' thievery of the killing blow against the Cube still stung, and she needed no excuse for the other two beyond their being traditionalists and, thus, avatars in a distant way of the mistreatment she had ever received from most members of their species.

The betting round finished. Evoras dealt the next face-up cards. She herself received a jack, which was less than ideal. Assuming no duplicates, the best she could hope for was a jack-high straight given that her cards so far were all of different suits. Not that it mattered in this game. Vulcan poker was almost entirely a game of bluff and misdirection because of the degree of certainty possible in determining each others' hands.

Now that the hands were being revealed, the betting switched from the worst to the best hand. A (visible) deuce and a jack was numerically-high but not the strongest at the table, so she again wasn't first to bet. Evoras spent the time inspecting the other faces for their tells, to try and gauge who might have something worth betting on, and who might simply be playing the numbers game and be about to fold. One of these hands in particular was, as some of her acquaintances might describe it, 'hot garbage'. The bet passed to her.

She pushed another few chips into the pile amidst the table. 

"Raise."
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

  • Numen
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • " I'm trying to make science here!"
  • Awards: Awarded to a writer who has produced graphics for the sim in a consistent and exemplary manner, be it making character images for applicants or graphics for the site as a whole. Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to the main contributing writers in a humorous scene or situation that stands out way above the norm in terms of inducing laughter for the readers. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #5
[Ensign Seren |  Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | oddities and strangenesses ]
[Show/Hide]
att: @Top Hat @Fife @fiendfall

"Apologies are illogical, savensu" Droned Seren inmediatly while Hathev sat on his right, and filled her designed location around the board. It was an automated response, more the result of the presence of other attendees with whom he was more unfamiliar. Had it been a concerted gathering just between the two counselors, the Ensign knew that Hathev would neither have excused herself nor would he have noted the irrelevance of the apology if it had transpired. The whole display was in benefit of the other two present at the ceremony: in the case of Cross for the paramount need for restraint and civility that he required, in the case of Evoras for the lack of acquaintance with the tactical officer.

As Cross engaged in some futile pursuit, Seren simply overlooked the actions of the former hybrid and, instead, he observed calmly the unknown element of the room. Except for the discordant green visor (something mandatory given the nature of the ritual in which they had embarked) nothing in her demeanor or outward appearance deviated from the conventional Vulcan composure other than what the individuality standards prescribed. Seren was gratified by that shallow scrutiny: after dealing with Cross' flamboyant unreasonableness, to relate to another proper vulcan was a satisfying novelty.

A bitter and alien smelling vapour distracted him from his lucubrations, and forced him to turn his head in search of the source of such scent. Although Seren was familiar with the concoction, he did not favor its consumption, given its scarce calorific value and the absence of effects of caffeine on his organism. He knew that there were some of his compatriots who favored the Earth beverage due to their familiarity with the traditions of that planet, but he had never felt any weakness for the brew. Cross, on the other hand, was a devout enthusiast, as he had proved through their interactions, and he was to blame for the invasion of the bitter fragrance in the holodeck. In spite of inopportune, it was not unusual. What was remarkable was that he didn't just replicate a cup for himself, but placed another in front of the Chief Counsellor. Hathev accepted it with grace, with a brief acknowledgement gaze. His savensu was one of those vulcans that take pleasure on coffee, but the informality between her and his patient was something conspicuous.

Seren tilted his head 5.5 degrees toward his left shoulder as he witnessed this interaction. An unexpected oddity.

However, he had little time to ponder over the event, as the cards were dealt and the game began straightaway. Seren placed his ante in front of him and picked up the hole card which entropy had appointed for him. A five of a black suit, certainly a card with little chance of success. The face-up card dealt in front of the ensign was a three of clubs, the lowest card in the style of play that Evoras had designated. It wasn't a convination with an excessively high percentage of victory, but a quick look at the rest of the cards exposed informed him that he still had a 1.385-10^-3% chances to get a straight flush. It was not a strong percentage, but it was still the maximum possible for that type of hand, so it was reasonable to carry on with the game  round until it was revealed whether those odds decreased or increased. Without a word, Seren pushed the chips that corresponded to the minimum bet in front of him and stared at the faces of his peers during the betting round. Evoras was seemingly well acquainted with the game and the microexpressions on her face reflected confidence and attentiveness. Most likely her cards were mildly advantageous, something logical with a deuce on the table, which implied one pair for sure, a hand that could only be maintained or improved. However, Seren's gaze focused more on the faces of the Vulcans with whom he was most familiar. And his interest wasn't so much in the game itself as in discovering any other rarity such as the one he had spotted. Evoras rised the bet as soon as possible, something he had anticipated so, after 3.47 seconds of reflection, Seren simply said. "Call" as he placed another round of chips in the bet pool.




Savensu → teacher
Lt. JG Khorin Douglas [Show/Hide]
Lt. Izar Bila [Show/Hide]
Ensign Seren [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #6
[ Lt. Cmdr. Hathev | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @Fife

She had expected Seren's displeasure, although a verbal chastisement she had not. Thus it was a somewhat sharpened gaze that she turned upon him, accompanied by the toneless reply: 'As is disrespect.' The child knew her reasoning for engaging in such alien rituals of politeness, and thus it was neither appropriate nor necessary for him to question her in this matter.

Of course, had they been in the company of entirely traditional Vulcans, Seren would have been entirely correct. However from Hathev's understanding of Lieutenant Evoras, the woman had been raised external to Vulcan, and so it was only logical that Hathev treat her with some uncertainty regarding her preferred customs. Expatriates, especially those who experienced extended periods of contact with emotional species, could occasionally adopt external beliefs and expectations. In addition, Cross, while making progress with his ability to control his emotions to some degree, was hardly Vulcan in his sensibilities; she did not wish to appear impolite.

Nevertheless, the acknowledged the reason of her orensu's statement with a simple inclination of the head. She did not appreciate challenges to her judgement, yet she would be foolish indeed were she to ignore them when they came. Seren's logic was, at almost every turn, impeccable; whatever else she might have known of him, that at least held true.

The game was begun with little ceremony or fanfare, Lieutenant Evoras becoming something of the leader in organising play; Hathev was hardly displeased with the development, as it allowed her to simply watch her assembled companions. If nothing else, she appreciated the opportunity to study the unfamiliar Vulcan in their midst.

She had met Lieutenant Evoras once before, albeit briefly, when the Theurgy first arrived at Aldea: the lieutenant had temporarily held the position of Acting Chief Tactical Officer pending Cross' promotion to the role. Hathev had considered her a logical choice for a fourth player, being Cross' direct subordinate, as was Seren hers. She was also aware that it was entirely possible that Evoras' expression of Vulcan culture might differ somewhat from that of both Seren and herself, and considered such a variety of Vulcan experience might be beneficial for Cross' understanding of his new species.

In addition, she had found the woman to display an appropriate reason, directness, and professionalism upon their last meeting, and this combined with the proper degree of quietude which Evoras exercised now was enough to reaffirm Hathev's judgement in her mind. The lieutenant was a strong addition to the table -- and a capable dealer.

Of Hathev's own hand there was little to be said. Entirely unremarkable in any fashion, it was at least better than that bestowed upon her orensu; as such she was content to remain in the game, and took the necessary steps to do so. Having slid her chips neatly into the centre of the table, she reached for her coffee, sipping it neutrally as she regarded her companions.

Evoras she had already considered. Seren, behaving much as he ever did, despite the depths she knew to be lurking beneath the surface of his mind; Hathev had to admit to no small curiosity, combined with a little concern, over the state of that mind, yet it was not her place to question, and this were certainly not the correct environs to do so. Finally, Cross, as full of expression and emotion as ever. She was aware of his presence at her side even as she studied the others, the lightness of the space between them, its very narrowness, the possibility and prohibition contained within. A desire of perfect illogicality manifested itself; she frowned almost imperceptibly with the effort required to subdue it.

'How do you find Aldea, Lieutenant?' she asked instead, viewing the woman over the rip of her mug. 'You have been with the Theurgy since the flight from Earth, have you not?'

The presence at her side defied inattention. Very well; she would see to it. Turning to him, then: 'The department treats you both well, I take it?'

In her shift to view Cross, the slight jostling had caused her knee to collide with his beneath the table, the contact so light as to be almost unnoticeable, had she not been so very aware. She considered this fact for a moment, the minute pressure where before there was only awareness; ultimately concluding such a thing was harmless, she made no move to rectify her positioning. There was little cause to expend energy on such a pointless action, and thus she turned her attention to the game instead.


orensu -> student
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor
"Logic without ethics is no logic at all." [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer
"Live fast, die stupid." [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Holoprogram Designer
"Envy isn't your colour, babe." [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to a player in recognition of their willingness and ability to put their character through extraordinary personal hardship, be it suffering through sickness or personal crisis, through which the writer contributed superb posts relevant to the situa Awarded to the writers of an erotic scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of emotion, adherence to character, atmosphere and steaminess. Awarded to the main contributing writers in an action scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of pace, thrill, scope and stakes. Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #7
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Corridors Outside Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @fiendfall @Numen @Top Hat
[Show/Hide]Cross had sipped his coffee in silence as the game began, then took up his cards and regarding his hand with a neutral expression. Evoras raised and Seren called, as did Hathev. Cross tossed his own chips into mix. "Call." No point in pushing too much off the bat. He had limited experience with poker, having played Texas Hold 'Em a few times with Kai aboard the Endeavour, and wanted to get a feel for the game. And for the other players. Placing his cards back down on the table in front of him, Cross took up his mug once more, ever annoyed at trying to avoid using his prosthetic for fear of breaking the cup.

Hathev spoke then, the sound of her voice drawing Cross' pale gaze as she asked how Evoras was finding Aldea. The table had been quiet up until that point, and he found himself amused that Hathev, such a typical Vulcan in so many ways, was the one to try and engage the table in small talk. Cross felt Hathev's knee make contact with his as she turned to address him as well, inquiring as the whether the departments were treating them well. Beneath the table, Cross pressed his knee ever so slightly against Hathev's, though above the table he turned his gaze to Evoras, a hint of mischief in his eyes. "Careful how you answer that, Evoras." Cross cautioned with a chuckle and a wink. "We wouldn't want any ill comments about your department head getting back to them." No doubt Seren would feel displeasure at a Vulcan making such an illogical gesture, but after the events of the other day when Cross had aided Seren in rectifying his horrific mistakes involving the poor orchid which resided in his quarters, Seren could deal with it.

That thought sparked a sense of curiosity in Cross, who sipped his drink as he turned his gaze to Seren. "Counsellor, how is that little matter we dealt with the other day going?" Cross was intentionally vague, Seren having requested his discretion in revealing anything about the incident. "I hope things are proceeding well?" Cross placed his mug back down on the table as he asked the question, resting his hand next to his cards as he waited for the next round of cards and betting. Cross found himself surprised as he felt Hathev's continued presence beneath the table, having expected her to withdraw form the contact soon after making it. He fought the urge to glance at her, not wanting the others at the table to grow suspicious, but continued to lean his own leg against hers, enjoying the contact, however slight it might be.

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #8
[ Lt Evoras | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Not Invented Here ] attn: @fiendfall @Fife @Numen

The round of bets from her companions as the hand went on was cautious - logical. This early in proceedings, with unfamiliar opponents, it made sense to attempt to gauge one's playing partners to see how they acted and minimise one's own losses to do so. It was, in the good lieutenant's opinion, an inefficient use of their time.

Evoras also found that boring.

So her aggressive betting stance remained unchallenged, but that was fine. They all had chips enough to stand a few bad hands, should she lose this one. The next cards, the last of the hand, went around the table.

Hathev was keen to distract from the game, it seemed. Or perhaps was attempting to get a better read on a near-stranger. It would be a lie to say that Evoras was entirely comfortable with being examined so by a counsellor whose career tenure exceeded her own track in Tactical, and in an environment that didn't necessarily constitute an easy escape - even if she could produce a suitable excuse.

"Aldea is acceptable. I have not ventured to the surface nor the docks, in truth. There is a great deal of work to be completed aboard ship before I would consider any leave for myself..." she trailed off a second, inspecting her cards as if there was some new insight to be divined. Middling. "And our replacements require drilling to standard."

"You have been with the Theurgy since the flight from Earth, have you not?"

"I have, but for a brief stint in stasis," she supplied, without elaboration. She was offered a reprieve as Hathev focused on Cross, though the question was for them both.

"The department treats you both well, I take it?"

"Careful how you answer that, Evoras. We wouldn't want any ill comments about your department head getting back to them."

"The Captain likes me better anyway," she deadpanned, only one belatedly-quirking eyebrow betraying her own quip in return. "Though I trust we are making you feel welcome, Commander..."

As Cross queried Seren, Evoras looked at the visible cards on the table. Statistically she was in a mediocre position, though not the worst of the table... unless someone was sitting on a secret pair of cards that matched one or two of their visible ones. An outlier did not an impossibility make, after all.

Having driven the betting, now she was content to wait to see how the others acted. To see who would bet or call, and what reaction that might draw.

She sipped her tea.


ooc: thank you for your patience, folks
  • Last Edit: July 12, 2020, 10:45:25 PM by Auctor Lucan
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

  • Numen
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • " I'm trying to make science here!"
  • Awards: Awarded to a writer who has produced graphics for the sim in a consistent and exemplary manner, be it making character images for applicants or graphics for the site as a whole. Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to the main contributing writers in a humorous scene or situation that stands out way above the norm in terms of inducing laughter for the readers. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #9
[Ensign Seren |  Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | oddities and strangenesses ]
[Show/Hide]
att: @Top Hat @Fife @fiendfall

Hathev's remark about his disrespect made the young Vulcan tip his head to the side a bit. While the comment was delivered with a flawless dispassionate tone, his experience with the Chief Counsellor and the content of the short sentence distinctly characterized it as a perfunctory reprimand. It was illogical since Seren had only pointed out a fact, which was far from implying an act of disrespect as she had alleged, at least in the young man's terms. Seren blinked a couple of times but made no response to the observation, instead he preferred to reflect on that unexpected scolding later. In the meantime, Seren focused on the game, while the elders around him concentrated on their own cards.

As the rounds were handed out around the table, the Vulcans engaged in what the humans used to call "small talk". It was an idle pastime in which Seren rarely partook, but given the origin and nature of the ceremony, it seemed only appropriate to be involved. However, due to his lack of expertise in the subject, the ensign was doomed to listen as the dialogue began to revolve around the tactical department. It was not surprising that Hathev would bring up this particular topic, a commonplace of the lesser-known elements for her (and him) surrounding the table, and that it would allow her to learn a little more about them.

Predictably, Cross managed to morph a polite approach into a kind of humorous game and, to his astonishment, Evoras answered with an absolutely neutral tone and with a content that could be entirely true, in spite of being slightly pretentious, but due to the content of her sentence was rather discourteous towards her superior. The slight alteration in the position of her eyebrow implied, though, that her intention was also facetious. Seren perceived this as an opportunity to engage in the conversation. "It is logical that the captain holds in higher regard an officer who has served with propriety under hir command for a longer period of time," he said as he concentrated on aligning the cards perfectly in front of him. Although his primary impulse was to sort them according to the baby straight that was slowly building up before him, that would be counterproductive to the purpose of the game. So Seren just corrected the angles between them so that they were perfectly parallel, trying to ignore the slight uneasiness the disorder caused him. "Perhaps you should try to show a high degree of excellence in your position, Commander, or Evoras could soon replace you. In any case, educate yourself about her preferences regarding tea or coffee. " He quipped, his face still as sober and unexpressive as ever. However, he allowed his Orbicularis oculi muscles narrowed in a minimal degree, in the most subtle microexpression of a smile.

The next roll of cards came and it laid a douce before Seren, the last card he needed to complete the game he was building. Without being one of the most potent plays in the game it was at least noteworthy, so the young ensign began scheduling how to handle the final round of bets. Just then, Cross adressed him anew. Seren averted his eyes from his cards and surveyed his fellow table companions in turn, until he looked back at the former hybrid. For 3.4 seconds he remained like that, while meticulously suppressing the greenish blush that struggled to ascend to his cheeks at the mention of the help he had needed. To address the issue in front of his savensu and an acquitance was mortifying at the very least. "There was a minor deterioration of the condition that made me question your advice, yet since the arrival of the second agent the problem has been firmly set on the course of amelioration". He cryptically answered. " I am evaluating your advice regarding the ceremony at the moment," he confessed as he placed a moderate bet in the pool.
Lt. JG Khorin Douglas [Show/Hide]
Lt. Izar Bila [Show/Hide]
Ensign Seren [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to a player in recognition of their willingness and ability to put their character through extraordinary personal hardship, be it suffering through sickness or personal crisis, through which the writer contributed superb posts relevant to the situa Awarded to the writers of an erotic scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of emotion, adherence to character, atmosphere and steaminess. Awarded to the main contributing writers in an action scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of pace, thrill, scope and stakes. Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #10
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Corridors Outside Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @fiendfall
[Show/Hide]Cross chuckled as Evoras returned fire at his little joke, claiming the Captain liked her better before asking if they were making him feel welcome. "Let's just dispense with the ranks for now." Cross said, glancing between Evoras as Seren. "We're off duty, after all." Cross turned his full attention back to Evoras. "The crew has been very welcoming. I feel more at home after three weeks than I have on most ships I've served on." Cross gave Hathev's leg a light press with his own beneath the table. "Besides, nothing makes a man feel welcome like being told "Welcome aboard, here's an extensive list of damage reports for you to deal with."" Cross chuckled, taking a sip of his coffee and turning his attention to Seren. The counsellor had remarked on the logic of the Captain holding a longer-serving officer in higher regard, going on to suggest that Cross show a high degree of excellence in his position, lest Evoras be marked to replace him. Then he suggested that Cross educate himself on hir preferences in tea of coffee, which made Cross blink.

Was that a joke? Cross wondered, pale eyes regarding Seren quizzically. Then the pointed nature of the last remark hit home, and Cross felt a faint blush rising in his cheeks. "Perhaps I should." Cross finally said, his tone neutral despite the slight glare he directed that the male counsellor at the table. "Thank you for the suggestion, Seren." Cross said coldly, while he felt the leg belonging to the other counsellor at the table gently press against his. Cross cursed himself inwardly again for his little slip in bringing Hathev her coffee. He should have known the beady-eyed junior counsellor would notice it. Cross gently pressed his own leg back against Hathev's as he drew in a deep breath to calm himself. As that happened, Seren had continued to speak, this time addressing Cross' question about the little matter he had consulted Cross on. Cross had to carefully school his features as Seren made mention of the ceremony, not wanting to break into a grin and give his little joke away. "I'm glad to hear things have improved." Cross spoke honestly as he lifted the newly dealt cards to inspect them, though his mind was half consumed with the leg which still rested against his under the table. "Let me know if you want any more advice on the matter."

Turning his attention to Hathev, Cross looked at the diminutive Vulcan with a half-smile. "How about you, Counsellor?" Cross asked, giving her leg a light nudge under the table. "Have you found the Theurgy welcoming so far?"

When the better came around to him, Cross would toss his chips into the middle of the table and mutter "Raise.", not entirely paying attention to the game and unsure of how strong his hand was.
  • Last Edit: January 10, 2020, 03:06:41 AM by Fife

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #11
[ Lt. Cmdr. Hathev | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @Fife

'I have, but for a brief stint in stasis.' Evoras answered Hathev's question with perfunctory fact, belying her previous effusiveness in replying to Hathev's question on Aldea. Unfortunate; this had been the more interesting of the two as it affordered Hathev, a newcomer to the vessel, another perspective on the ship upon which she now served. The distinction between the woman's two answers led Hathev to wonder if Evoras harboured a reluctance to share information on the subject of her own service aboard the vessel. Perhaps she resented her current position, ranking beneath a newcomer as she was; it could be logically argued that Evoras, with her familiarity with the ship and its crew, would have been the more proper choice.

A logic that Seren seemed to adhere to. His comments were clearly intended as an attempt at light-hearted jest, and Hathev might have been pleased to see the boy working to get along with Cross in such a manner had it not been delivered so. Under other circumstances she might have offered the child a lesson in the dangers of contrariness, but he had made it clear he neither desired nor would accept her assistance in such matters. Instead all she could do was apply a prohibitive amount of pressure to Cross in an attempt to mitigate any damage.

'We would all do well to remember and respect the competence of our colleagues, both new and old,' she said for little other reason than to prevent anyone else from speaking. And then, directed at the two from the Theurgy: 'How has it been for you, seeing the crew so changed recently?'

Seren and Cross shared a cryptic exchange which she had to admit more than a little curiosity about; yet she curbed her desire to inquire. Obfuscation of that kind would only be utilised by Seren of all people should he deem it necessary, and she would not impede on his efforts.

And then Cross turned his attention to her, and for a moment she was uncertain whether doing so was foolish or clever. She hardly wished to draw attention to their arrangement by conversing overmuch, but would not ignoring one another entirely appear odd?

'Certainly,' she replied, quickly recalling her gaze from his face to fix her eyes more properly upon her cards where they could not betray her. 'Considering he circumstances under which we first met and came aboard the Theurgy, my crew and I have found her surprisingly accommodating. There is much to get accustomed to; I admit I had not seen active duty for several years prior to now, let alone on a vessel such as this.'

She matched Cross' bet to remain in the game; her cards were mediocre, and she would expect either Seren or Evoras to have a hand better than hers, but she had no real interest in winning, the little chips they were playing with having no value beyond the pride of their holder.

'What of you others? I would imagine the Theurgy is quite a change for us all.'
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor
"Logic without ethics is no logic at all." [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer
"Live fast, die stupid." [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Holoprogram Designer
"Envy isn't your colour, babe." [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #12
[ Lt Evoras | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Not Invented Here ] attn: @fiendfall @Fife @Numen

"Besides, nothing makes a man feel welcome like being told 'Welcome aboard, here's an extensive list of damage reports for you to deal with'."

"I will endeavour to tell the Task Force to leave us with fewer holes in future, Cross," she said, glancing across the table at him and sipping her tea. "However, they have thus far been disinclined to listen."

Evoras was caught somewhat flat-footed by Seren's comment regarding her beverage preferences, though. She had ever avoided the counselling staff aboard the ship - the Vulcans in particular - due to her unique living circumstances following her technical widowing. But it meant that she had little basis from which to judge whether or not his recommendation had been in jest or sincerity.

She had to admit that running the department had a certain charm, but she knew precisely how much paperwork she was able to avoid by her secondary role on account of being the one to punt it directly up the chain, and she was quite satisfied with her current PADD/trigger balance.

"We would all do well to remember and respect the competence of our colleagues, both new and old." Perhaps not a joke, then. Interesting in itself, really. Evoras looked again between Seren and Cross. More tea.

"How has it been for you, seeing the crew so changed recently?"

"Were it not changed, it would instead be depleted. Sankolov has not, to borrow a phrase, spared his horses. And integration in the face of shared adversity has been smoother than we could otherwise expect... The greater obstacles lay with your own erstwhile crew, Hathev. The loss of the Bellerophon is regrettable, doubly for the fact it was not the intent. It was gratifying to see them mostly forgive us so readily, given what happened."

Like Hathev, Evoras called Cross' raise, though with a suitable delay to avoid giving the impression she was merely hiding a bluff. Though on the subject of interactions between Hathev and Cross, there seemed plenty of microexpression going on for such a traditionalist in the former. A detail for later, perhaps? Something to throw off her superior's game, if nothing else, she'd wager.

She was curious to hear what the newcomers' opinion would be of the ship. It would be a small window into what they'd have to face (writ large) once their mission was complete and they had to face the galaxy once again in the open.

With luck, she'd even be alive to see it.
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

  • Numen
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • " I'm trying to make science here!"
  • Awards: Awarded to a writer who has produced graphics for the sim in a consistent and exemplary manner, be it making character images for applicants or graphics for the site as a whole. Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to the main contributing writers in a humorous scene or situation that stands out way above the norm in terms of inducing laughter for the readers. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #13
[Ensign Seren | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | oddities and strangenesses ]
[Show/Hide]
att: @Top Hat @Fife @fiendfall


Cross stared him carefully. At first, his glaucous eyes and his expressive countenance displayed an obvious confusion. Later, when clarity seemingly enlightened his mind, his gaze became almost accusatory, darting into Seren brown eyes with manifest animosity, though his words remained in a decently neutral tone. Even the Chief Tactical Officer expressed his gratitude for the suggestion he had made regarding Evoras' personal preferences. The young Vulcan blinked a couple of times, somewhat perplexed by the sudden mood shift that indicated a clear misunderstanding of Seren's intention.

That confusion only deepened when Hathev spoke in a distinctly admonitory fashion. While her tone and demeanor remained as impeccable as ever, she seemed determined to ignore his efforts to connect with his patient on a level that Cross could relate to. This time it was Seren's turn to look at the counselor in bemusement, his head tilted 5.3 degrees to the left.

"The purpose of my statement has not been punitive, yet I will observe your advice and will refrain any further attempts to become acquainted with our fellow participants in a Non-Surakian manner" he droned with the slightest furrow of his lower lip.

Perhaps it was that remark or perhaps something else which prompted his Savensu to address Evoras once again, but that was the very moment Cross chose to address Seren regarding his orchid ministrations. The two men had a properly disguised exchange, which gratified the young ensign deeply. "The partner you had referred me to is thriving adequately. I have prepared a detailed report on this subject that I will send to you after I have gathered the last set of data, so that you can assess whether the two are compatible." Certainly, the orchid he had originally kept had improved substantially since Cross' assistance, and even more so since the former hybrid supplied him with a second plant. Seren intended to formalize the situation between the two to encourage a complete recovery, if they were suitable for the other.

Shortly thereafter, the conversation moved again to Cross and Hathev, focused on the same kind of pleasantries that had adorned the beginning of the ceremony. Such recidivism was tedious, primarily due to the emptiness of the answers, as well as Seren's (at least peripheral) knowledge of the answers, given the interactions he had previously maintained with both Chiefs. To some extent, even Hathev seemed to find the exchange dull, concentrating her attention more on the cards than on the mundane reply. Thus, when she delivered another insipid question afterwards, Seren could not help but stare at her closely, as he endeavored to judge her purpose. There was some tension in the muscles around her mouth, a slight narrowing of her eyelids. If he added to that the signs of irascibility that she had shown against him, the increased latency in her verbal responses, and the slower-than-usual movements, he could deduce that Hathev presented a mild case of stress. This could be due to her status as de facto hostess of the ceremony, to the interaction with all or some of those present, or to some condition that Seren was unaware of. The therapist in the young ensign took good note of this to address the issue with his en'ahr'at later, privately. After all, Seren was the closest thing to a family member she had on board.

With that resolve in mind and estimating that the counselor's next question was not addressed to himself, Seren laid his cards face down on the table. Without wasting a moment, Seren pulled out a narrow case from a pocket hidden inside his uniform jacket, from which he, in turn, extracted a delicate pair of lacquered chopsticks. He used these to harvest the hitherto untouched small Asachis Hypogea tubers from the receptacle in which he had previously stored them, and he began to consume them parsimoniously. Obviously, by doing so, Seren ceased to participate in the conversation, for there were few things that he considered more inappropriate than talking during food consumption.

The faux nuts were a pleasant surprise. They were tasty, with a salty, buttery touch that made them highly palatable. Although Seren had avoided that type of nourishment due to the incongruity of its vernacular designation, he started to consider adding them to his dietary intake. Although their caloric value was substantial, they could be part of a quick meal or a kit for away missions, if he ever found himself needing to participate in one.

In the meantime, the bets kept rising around the table, and, when they reached him again, Seren entertained himself for a moment figuring out his opponents' hands. He soon dismissed Cross and Hathev from the equation given their general lack of attentiveness regarding the game. Evoras, on the other hand, was still an uncertainty. It was obvious that her cards should contain a winning combination, between the middle and upper sections of the chart, exactly the same rank as his own. The almond-eyed Vulcan had bet with measured restraint in every round, almost too much of it, which could point to a concealed winner hand. Determined to find this out, Seren pushed a new mountain of chips to the center of the table, raising the bet by 33% over the previous round. 



savensu → teacher, instructor
en'ahr'at → godparent, alternative guardiar or advidor en ausencia de un progenitor.
Lt. JG Khorin Douglas [Show/Hide]
Lt. Izar Bila [Show/Hide]
Ensign Seren [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #14
[ Lt. Cmdr. Hathev | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @Fife

Cross' question, aimed at her alone, was brazen in its pointedness; she kept her gaze firmly fixed upon her cards as she answered.

'In most respects,' she said calmly. Then, glancing up minutely: 'As I believe you are aware, Commander.'

The game continued, leaving Hathev's own enquiry unanswered; no matter, she had harboured little personal interest in its asking other than the encouragement of further discourse from her current companions. Under normal circumstances, she would not have made such efforts to entice conversation from fellow Vulcans -- of course, under normal circumstances, she would have been unlikely to orchestrate such a meeting as this. The purpose was, primarily, for the benefit of Cross, and he being as he was she felt a certain responsibility to lubricate the social situation that it might better conform to his preferences. It had been she, after all, who had required his presence.

Nevertheless, they traversed fraught subjects. Evoras' opinion of the Bellerophon in particular had Hathev scrutinising the woman more carefully. Indeed, such a heinous and preventable loss of life, without due cause and demonstrating a foul lack of morality, had been regrettable. And certainly, such destruction had been the intent of those who gave and enacted the orders. Wholesale massacre did not occur by accident.

Furthermore, the woman's professed belief that the crew to which they had done so much harm had forgiven the Theurgy 'so readily' betrayed her naïveté. A member of that crew had murdered one from the Theurgy little more than a week ago. Did Evoras aim to downplay such an event? Or did she simply consider it the outlier in this equation?

'Certainly, amongst my erstwhile crew mates opinions of the Theurgy are divided,' she said tactfully, studying her cards. 'Nevertheless the common enemy makes necessity your ally in this case.' Combined with the fact that, had any of the Bellerophon crew wished to leave the Theurgy, the logistics of allowing them to do so without sending them to their deaths at the hands of Task Force Archeron were fraught with difficulty. Truly, there had been little choice in the matter; a fact Hathev had endeavoured to soften by advocating so vocally for the Theurgy's cause herself. None had been forced to remain; yet neither had they been truly free to refuse to do so. In all, hardly the ideal circumstances to promote solidarity.

'True unity will take some time to be achieved, yet we are certainly on the path to doing so,' she said finally. In this, at least, Evoras was partially correct: she may have been hasty in judging the degree to which those from the Bellerophon had forgiven the architects of their previous ship's destruction, such forgiveness was not only possible but being enacted by at least some.

For Hathev's part, she saw no logic in either holding such events against those who had no real hand in them, nor in forgetting the circumstances which allowed such an atrocity. She would remain sensible to the possibility of the reoccurrence of such an act, and to the necessity of preventing it should it be possible.

The matter apparently closed, the game continued in relative silence for the span of a few minutes. Seren had removed himself from the conversation in order to consume several of the fruit provided in the bowl at the centre of the table, and both Evoras and Cross were seemingly unwilling to reciprocate Hathev's attempts at prolonging the discussion. Very well; if they had no interest in conversing she was hardly one to force them to do so.

Seren's movement beside her drew her from her thoughts as he stood, crossing to the bar to retrieve another beverage for himself. It was a shame that her earlier words to the boy had been so clearly misunderstood, to such an extent it seemed almost wilful. Perhaps this was the cause of his quietitude.

Excusing herself from the table briefly, she crossed to join the boy at the bar.

'Your attempts to acquaint yourself with Commander Cross are appropriate,' she said as she reached him, voice quiet that they were not overheard. 'It is correct that you should make such efforts. I would clarify that my earlier comment was merely meant as caution that your words not be misinterpreted; they contained a double-meaning distinctly Human in style, and while Cross may appreciate such an approach, as a more proper member of our species Lieutenant Evoras may consider your intentions to be other.'

She paused, distinctly aware of the distance between them -- perfectly correct, of course, as was everything they shared. The memories of his heart in her hands, of K'shatrisu blossoming at her touch, of her eviction from Seren's mind, were irrelevant. For a moment she might have wished to say more, and yet she was far too controlled to act upon such a foolish whim and speak so.

Thus, her piece said, Hathev returned to the table and her cards. 'Forgive my absence,' she said as she was seated, taking in the state of the game with a glance that finished upon her immediate companion. Perhaps her plan had been ill-conceived, requiring his presence here; he could hardly be enjoying himself. She shifted her seat ever so slightly closer to his own; imperceptibly so, surely. Yet she could not deny that his company was welcome to a truly illogical degree.

'Have you had much cause to explore Aldea, Commander?' she enquired with the proper amount of interest. 'I admit I have yet to properly experience much of the planet.' Perhaps she had merely lacked the correct incentive.
  • Last Edit: February 05, 2020, 12:46:07 AM by fiendfall
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor
"Logic without ethics is no logic at all." [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer
"Live fast, die stupid." [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Holoprogram Designer
"Envy isn't your colour, babe." [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to a player in recognition of their willingness and ability to put their character through extraordinary personal hardship, be it suffering through sickness or personal crisis, through which the writer contributed superb posts relevant to the situa Awarded to the writers of an erotic scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of emotion, adherence to character, atmosphere and steaminess. Awarded to the main contributing writers in an action scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of pace, thrill, scope and stakes. Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #15
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Corridors Outside Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @fiendfall
[Show/Hide]Cross grinned at his fellow tactical officer's promise to inform the Task Force which hunted them of his desire for fewer holes in their ship, chuckling softly as she added that they had thus far not listened to such requests. Unable to stop himself, Cross returned Evoras' gaze with one heavy with mischief. "Perhaps Sankolov would respond to a less Vulcan approach. Have you tried saying "please"? The question was asked over the rim of his mug, his chuckle silenced when he followed the comment with a sip of the bitter liquid.

He turned his attention to Seren as the counsellor addressed him, chuckling at Seren's report of "the partner" thriving, the former hybrid finding himself looking forward to the counsellor's promised report. While he was happy that he had managed to help with Seren's problem, he couldn't help but find the entire series of events entertaining. Especially the little joke he had played on the counsellor, who had already made reference to the ceremony that he eventually intended to perform. "I look forward to reading it, Seren." Cross finally said, giving the other man a slight smile. "I'm glad our little intervention worked out. I'm sure the two are very happy together." He held Seren's gaze a moment longer before dropping his gaze to study his cards. What he found there in his hand was not promising from what he could tell. Hatehv and Evoras had both called his raise, and now Seren saw his wager and raised again.

He was surprised at Hathev's reply to his question. He made a point of returning her gaze at her addition of "As I believe you are aware of, Commander", fearing that a glance at Seren might give something away. "I'm glad you've found the Theurgy welcoming, Counsellor." he murmured, nudging her knee with his own beneath the table. Then, turning his attention back to the game, Cross gave his cards one final glance and tossed his chips into the pot.

"Call."

That done, he listened as Hathev spoke of the crew from the Bellerophon and their attitude towards the Theurgy, expressing the belief that true unity between the crews would take some time. Cross found himself reflecting on how easily the Endeavour crew had integrated with the Theurgy's be comparison. But then, the Endeavour had not been destroyed by the Theurgy as the Bellerophon had, but rather by the Borg. He was pulled out of his thoughts as Seren and Hathev rose fromt eh table and made for the bar, the former hybrid glancing after them briefly before turning to Evoras. "Want to look at their cards? I won't tell if you don't." Not very Vulcan of him, he knew. But then, he also knew that Evoras could be less than proper at times as well. Their meeting some two weeks prior had been rathe enlightening, though the two had hardly discussed the matter further in the time since. "I'm glad you find Aldea acceptable, but you should take some time and visit the planet, Evoras. I appreciate all the work you've been doing, but you deserve a break just as much as the rest of the crew, if not more so based on the amount you've dealt with keeping things running." A slight smile spread over his features. "I can drill the replacements and get them up to snuff. You've earned a little R&R." Cross' slight smiel turned into a full grin. "Maybe with a bit of relaxation, you might be quick enough to beat me to the kill next time."

Cross gave his fellow tactical officer a wink, waiting for some comment in return. He eventually glanced up when Hathev and Seren retuned to, Hathev with an uttered "Forgive my absence". Once seated, Hathev asked if he had had much cause to explore Aldea, adding that she had not had a chance to properly explore the planet yet. "I've visited the planet, though the majority of the time was spent on the beach rather than exploring the city." Cross' features took on an absent smile as he remembered his time on the beach, though they faded slightly as he recalled the conversation he had had with a young woman from the Theurgy's crew who he had met there. As well as the short time he had spent there the previous night, though eh was hardly going to bring that up in the present company.

He gave Hathev's knee another nudge under the table, though his face gave away nothing of his thoughts. "You should try to take some time and enjoy Aldea, counsellor. From what I've seen, it's an interesting place. The beaches were beautiful, and the water was quite nice." Perhaps they ought to try and find the time to go together. Cross certainly wouldn't mind seeing Hathev sunbathing, though he wasn't sure Vulcans did such things. "Unless you find such things illogical, in which case I've heard there are museums and other places to visit as well." Cross felt that, given some time, he might be able to convince Hathev that the beach wasn't all that illogical.


OOC: I'm so sorry for the delay! I've been super busy lately. I meant to get this out earlier today, but we got slammed with calls today.

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #16
[ Lt Evoras | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Not Invented Here ] attn: @fiendfall @Fife @Numen

Evoras had to stare at Seren. He'd raised the pot by a third, and she wasn't convinced about his hand. However, this first round was one of discovery, and she could hardly test all avenues without matching his wager. Which would of course betray her own intentions, but every action was its own description regardless, whether she engaged or refrained. She suppressed a sigh. It was always so tiresome to be presented with nothing but suboptimal choices.

An apt metaphor for the ship's lasting situation.

Of her playing partners, however, she still had clearly to get the measure. It seemed she had misinterpreted the younger counsellor and disappointed the elder. No matter; it was hardly as if she cared what a counsellor might think of her. Certainly not a traditionalist, either. She added another stack of chips to stay in the game.

The blueshirts took a recess to the bar, and Cross took the opportunity to offer a free cheat. Evoras could hardly help but raise an eyebrow in response. "That would entirely take the... fun out of the game. At any rate, the change in my betting pattern would be obvious to them," she admonished, though not without returning the twinkle in the once-hybrid's eye. Her expression returned to neutral. "As for Aldea, I have little interest. Deserts just remind me of home, and... it isn't the same."

She was being honest in several ways tonight, it seemed. She wondered if she could stop before she wound up on the receiving end of an unfriendly mind meld. Which was probably an uncharitable view of her fellow Vulcans but she had heard of worse, once or twice. Things that got hushed up. Hidden.

"... museums and other places to visit as well."

"I confess that I do find myself interested in the Gestalt program," she said. "They aren't dissimilar from the Dominion's Jem'Hadar, though obviously the Aldean government are not expansionist enough to pursue the same strategy using it. The Federation ban on such tinkering does preclude the usual pitfalls of such... experimentation, but the Aldean regime shows how they can be used to benefit their host society."

She looked about the table and the cards arranged thereupon, having realised (again) too-late that such rambling only betrayed more of herself than she wished to present, and indicated the pot. "Any further bets?"


ooc: take that, @Fife. my procrastination turned out way better than yours
edit to add the actual bet
  • Last Edit: July 12, 2020, 10:47:04 PM by Auctor Lucan
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

  • Numen
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • " I'm trying to make science here!"
  • Awards: Awarded to a writer who has produced graphics for the sim in a consistent and exemplary manner, be it making character images for applicants or graphics for the site as a whole. Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to the main contributing writers in a humorous scene or situation that stands out way above the norm in terms of inducing laughter for the readers. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #17
[Ensign Seren | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | oddities and strangenesses ]
[Show/Hide]
att: @Top Hat @Fife @fiendfall


For a while, Seren pondered over the long list of beverages the replicator offered. Under ordinary circumstances, he would have selected one of his usual tea blends, water or some kind of fruity juice. However, his elders seemed to favour coffee in these particular circumstances, and while his lectures regarding the details of the ritual indicated that the consumption of alcoholic beverages was common, Seren suspected that there was an intentionality in the consumption of caffeinated products. Perhaps it was a variation adapted to Vulcan physiology, immune to the intoxicating effects of alcohol. Perhaps it was merely a coincidence of personal choice. Somewhat highly unlikely, on the other hand. That one or two Vulcans favoured coffee as a drink in that event was fortuitous. That three of them did? That was a pattern. Or part of the ritual.


So Seren selected all the entries that matched the search for "coffee" and began to study them thoroughly. Half the names didn't make any sense for him. 'Doppio', 'Espressino', 'Cortado', 'Ca phe sua da'... those words were Standard? The young Vulcan scrolled through the strange choices when his savensu stepped up to his side.


The Chief Counsellor's words were rational, aimed at solving an inaccurate interpretation of the events that had taken place around the table. As he listened her, nodding sharply, Seren's hand tapped the replicator's screen and a pitcher of refreshment began to materialize in the alcove. "Your logic is sound, en'ahr'at" he acknowledged under his breath, without delving too deeply into either his or her motivations in the whole affair. It would be something the young Vulcan would address in their next private meeting.


The two of them became silent once again, aware of all that was unsaid between them, but without referring to it in any manner. Finally, without further ado, Hathev returned to her position at the table, next to a former hybrid, and Seren turned to collect the drink. It was much more than he had intended, about a quart and a half of a dark brown drink, topped with a sort of white cream sprinkled with orange lines and a soft reddish powder. Seren blinked a couple of times as he surveyed the drink and his gaze shifted to the screen. '1250 ml of Borgia' stated the small display. That didn't clarify the nature of the concoction. Seren inhaled deeply. Under the evident scent of coffee he managed to identify cinnamon and orange, two terran flavours that suited his palate. There was another distinct aroma in the blend that he could not identify, but the young counsellor attributed it to the whitish cream. He wasn't particularly partial to dairy and wasn't too familiar with its scent; that was probably the thing he couldn't identify. Seren synthesized four cups and walked back to the table, poured the drink in the cups and distributed it among the present.


Cross and Hathev were debating the virtues and defects of Aldea's recreational activities, at one point, the former hybrid asked Evoras for her opinion on such matters. The lieutenant dismissed the issue with a few words, declaring her lack of interest in Aldea, considering it an imperfect copy of her Homeworld.


Seren could not help but nod, absolutely in agreement with that definition. The young Vulcan took a brief sip of his drink, tentatively. The taste was pleasant, sweet and fruity with a slight bitter aftertaste at the end. The drink warmed his anatomy as it flowed through him, as well a tingling sensation in his throat. Odd. Seren was unaccustomed to that particular experience and found it intriguing, if not absolutely unpleasant.


" Gestalts are an interesting paradigm on a psychological and social level, in fact I attended a symposium a few days ago on how the accelerated development impacts on them... a frankly fascinating concept," Seren stated in response to Evoras' remark. Strange. He had no intention of providing unnecessary data about his activities on the surface, but something inside him commanded him to elaborate further than he was accustomed to. Surprised, he took another sip from his cup.


"Yet, though Aldea does not resemble Vulcan, it is comforting to set foot in a desert again," Seren declared shortly thereafter, disagreeing with Evoras. "I miss the Homeworld"


Why had he made such a... atypical confession? Even Seren shocked himself.







References on different types of coffee:
[Show/Hide]


OOC:
savensu → teacher, instructor
en'ahr'at → godparent, alternative guardiar or advidor en ausencia de un progenitor.
Lt. JG Khorin Douglas [Show/Hide]
Lt. Izar Bila [Show/Hide]
Ensign Seren [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #18
[ Lt. Cmdr. Hathev | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @Fife

Seren acknowledged her words only briefly, but the manner in which he did so was enough to mollify her. It was inevitable that she would study him with a closer eye after her ill-fated discovery, and his psychologically violent response; with this additional insight she could read further meaning into his words and actions, and into their risk for misinterpretation. She merely wished him to be careful and circumspect in his speech, although with such an emotional complication residing within him she was uncertain whether he was capable of being so.

But he had shunned her advice and assistance, and thus there was little she could do to treat the cause. Instead all she could attempt was to curb the more visible side-effects lest he misrepresent himself to another of their species.

She rejoined her compatriots at the table, returning to the game as further bets were made. Cross, it seemed, had spent some time on Aldea, recommending variously beaches and sites of more cultural import. She had not had cause to study the particulars of Aldea Prime; she wondered if the society allowed for theatre.

'You have much to learn of logic, Commander,' she said in response to Cross' slight teasing. 'A beach in itself could not be illogical; such coastal areas are important not only to local ecosystems but to weather patterns and sea levels. Perhaps you were thinking more of certain activities which one might reasonably assume visitors to partake in while in such environs; certainly some of those might be considered illogical. The practice of constructing miniature fortresses from an impermanent and improper building material, for example.'

There was no heat to her words; she would not pretend the prospect of spending time on the planet did not appeal to her somewhat, now she might do so with such company.

Seren returned to the table, accompanied by a cup of coffee, and Evoras turned the conversation to the Gestalt program. It was something of a non-sequitur, tonally discordant with the previous discussion of beaches and leisure time, and Hathev found herself watching the woman more carefully than before as she spoke of The Dominion, the Jem'Hadar, and the implication that Federation morality was somehow an inconvenience rather than a necessary check on the ambitions of those without their own sense of such ethics.

'I am sure there is much that could be achieved if one did not take into consideration the potential consequences of such progress,' she said. 'Nevertheless, that the Federation places such import on doing so has prevented a great many misuses of such powers. Even should Starfleet have found a way to safely engage in such practices, as the Aldeans may have done, recent discoveries regarding the fallibility of Starfleet Command only reinforce the frailty of such perceived safety.'

She had not been aware Seren had attended a symposium on the subject; she was interested to hear his opinion on the matter. However he too turned the conversation sharply once more, returning to discussion of Aldea only briefly before sharing his desire to return to Vulcan. She regarded him carefully; the boy was, in her experience, not normally so loquacious.

'There are few places like one's home, certainly,' she mused. Then, to Evoras: 'Does the planet resemble your own, Lieutenant?' She had to admit to no small amount of curiosity concerning the woman after her latest point of discussion. Lest such a line of inquiry appear too pointed, and that she might also learn more of Cross without such a thing appearing preferential, she included both Tactical officers in her next question: 'Have either of you travelled to Vulcan recently?'


OOC: Y'all I never added this to my queue I'm sorry it's so horribly late :C
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor
"Logic without ethics is no logic at all." [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer
"Live fast, die stupid." [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Holoprogram Designer
"Envy isn't your colour, babe." [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to a player in recognition of their willingness and ability to put their character through extraordinary personal hardship, be it suffering through sickness or personal crisis, through which the writer contributed superb posts relevant to the situa Awarded to the writers of an erotic scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of emotion, adherence to character, atmosphere and steaminess. Awarded to the main contributing writers in an action scene that stands out way above the norm in terms of pace, thrill, scope and stakes. Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #19
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Corridors Outside Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn:
[Show/Hide]Cross suppressed a chuckle as Hathev informed him that he had much to learn about logic, going to to explain that a beach, as a location, could not be called illogical. The practices which take place at the beach, however, could be illogical. She gave an example which brough the suppressed chuckle bubbling to the surface, Cross' eyes twinkling slightly as he smiled at her. "Don't let Commander Akoni hear you say that, Counsellor." Cross said, his tone filled with amusement. "The man practically grew up on the beach, and I'm sure he'd have plenty to argue for the merits of illogical architecture." Cross gave Hathev a slight nudge under the table. "I imagine a good part of his argument would be summed up by the Human phrase "don't knock it 'til you've tried it". I never had the opportunity to build a sand castle as a child, but I imagine it to be an unwinnable battle with the tide." Cross shrugged. "A child's kobayashi maru, perhaps?" The question was posed with an impish grin, the former hybrid imagining the Vulcans trying to logic their way to a more durable sandcastle.

Cross turned his attention away from Hathev and listened as Evoras briefly expressed an interest in the Aldean Gestalt program, the topic not one he knew overly much about, before she moved on to ask if there were any further bets. Cross remained silent, having no wish to raise the stakes of the game.

Seren deposited a large jug of what smelled like coffee, taking the time to pour the jug's contents into four mugs which he distributed. Cross gave a slight nod of thanks to the counsellor before turning his pale gaze to inspect the beverage. As he lifted the mug and took an investigative sniff, followed by a hesitant sip, he found in not altogether bad. Certainly better than what he would have expected Seren to serve. The drink was sweet, though had the bitter coffee aftertaste that he loved so much. Another sip, larger this time, brought with it a familiar tang and a slight rushing sensation which brought a grin to Cross' features, though he tried his best to hide it behind his mug, only depositing the cup back on the table when he had managed to school his face to his usual serious expression. Cross glanced around the table as his companions, wondering it Seren knew exactly what he had replicated. The male counsellor certainly seemed more talkative after a few pulls from his own mug. Hell, Seren seemed almost sociable.

Cross fought back a second grin and turned his attention back to his cards as Seren finished his comment about missing his home planet. Seren's comment about his feelings brought Cross' eyes rising again, the former hybrid peering at Seren with a mixture of amusement and curiosity. He was about to ask Seren what the drink was when Hathev spoke, giving what Cross supposed was the Vulcan equivalent to the Earth phrase "there's no place like home" before asking Evoras if the planet resembled her own homeworld. The Hathev asked if either of the Tactical officers had travelled to Vulcan recently. Cross cast a sideways glance at Hathev as she asked the question, his eyes thoughtful as he gently resting his knee against hers below the table. "Actually, I've never been to Vulcan." Cross admitted after a moment, glancing around the table as he added. "What I was a hybrid, I didn't tend to have good relations with... our kind. So Vulcan was never a planet which held much appeal." Cross leaned back in his chair, taping a finger on the table thoughtfully. "I suppose, given recent circumstances, I might have to think about reconsidering that..." Cross shook himself from the brief musings, glancing at Evoras. "How about you, Evoras?"


Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #20
[ Lt Evoras | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | Not Invented Here ] attn: @fiendfall @Fife @Numen

The smell of lactose-sweetened coffee invaded her nostrils, provoking a quirked eyebrow as she saw who was carrying it. Of all those arrayed around the table, Seren seemed the most adherent to good, traditional Vulcan asceticism - and here he was replicating intoxicants. As her own frothy concoction was placed in front of her she inclined her head in gratitude - though her gaze did flick to her own tea as she wondered how the flavours would interact. The prognosis was not good.

Cross saved her from immediate need to reply to Hathev, though, by supplying his own answer. She couldn't help but agree with his reasons for not going there, but in general she had no such excuse. Completely Vulcan, born and raised - though merely part of a counterculture within the broader vulcanoid umbrella.

But why should she be trepid about revealing her upbringing? Fear of reaction? She nearly scoffed at her own childish worries. These counsellors were hardly the worst examples of traditionalists she'd ever met.

Her first problem, though, required experimentation. She sipped the coffee, and couldn't stop her ears flaring back and a rapid series of blinks. The flush brought on by her reaction to the sugar was expected, but the combination with the Hell tea was truly atrocious. And she still had half a pot left. A dilemma, then. Which to drink first?

That decision was left pending due to Cross finishing his answer.

"I have visited Vulcan several times, mostly when visiting my husband's family. They were difficult visits," she paused just long enough for it to be noticeable, "because I am from Trilan."

The world itself was mostly L-class but for a few zones of M-class habitability where sufficiently-large meteoric impacts had uncovered the planet's subterranean sea. It was more arid than either Vulcan or Aldea, but the landmasses of the three shared a general hue between burnt ochre and gold. Its geography, however, was not why she resisted telling other Vulcans where she was from. The dominant school of philosophy on the colony was one of permitted emotion - though trammelled, it was not suppressed as in the wider-held Surakian belief. At best, she had encountered Vulcans who considered the practise quaint, if doomed to failure. At worst, she had been treated as if she were dangerous.

The likely outcome here would probably fall somewhere between those poles, but it was still a friction for which she cared little.

Evoras' gaze dropped to the table to check the revealed hands. A minute crease appeared between her brows as she tallied the cards. Seren had won. His gambit with increasing the bet hadn't been idle, it seemed.

"Congratulations, counsellor," she said, nodding to the pile of chips on the table. "The pot is yours."

She slid the dealer's coin clockwise around the table, and sipped her coffee. The second sip improved upon the first, at least.
Nator 159: "I accept no responsibility for the ensign's manifest stupidity. Sir." [Show/Hide]
Ranaan Ducote: "A ship is a home; its crew a family." [Show/Hide]
Evoras: "Your odds of prevailing against us are... slim." [Show/Hide]
Valkra: "Come! We will shake the gates of Sto'Vo'Kor!" [Show/Hide]

  • Numen
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • Inactive Theurgist
  • " I'm trying to make science here!"
  • Awards: Awarded to a writer who has produced graphics for the sim in a consistent and exemplary manner, be it making character images for applicants or graphics for the site as a whole. Awarded by the GM in appreciation for any act or contribution to the sim which is especially superogatory, rising above and beyond expectations. Awarded to the main contributing writers in a humorous scene or situation that stands out way above the norm in terms of inducing laughter for the readers. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #21
[Ensign Seren | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy | oddities and strangenesses ]
[Show/Hide]
att: @Top Hat @Fife @fiendfall

He had won.

It was his first participation in that ritual, and not only had he managed to complete it relatively successfully, but he had also succeeded in beating his elders in an activity in which they were much more seasoned than he was.

His face contorted in a strange way, with an alien as well as a totally improper sound poured from deep within his chest.

A smile.

And a chuckle.

Seren should be horrified by that development. Those deviations in his expected behavior hadn't occurred in years. In decades, in fact.

Yet his brain did not scold him for this, but sent another rush of adrenaline into his system that immediately turned into another satisfied giggle.

"I win," he said, as he stood up briefly, embraced the bunch of chips on the table, and dragged them back to his seat at the table. The clumsy movement made that more than half of them fell to the floor, in a multicolored waterfall. Despite the torpidity and the uncontrolled movements, Seren cared little and hoarded the chips under his small figure during a couple of minutes before he added.

" Right now, l will retire from the game. I will never play again so that I will be, now and forever, the champion." The sentence finished this time not with a chuckle, but with a hearty fit of laughter, as the young counsellor piled up the chips on the front of his uniform and stood up in a manner that not only staggered, but seriously threatened to knock his bones to the floor.

"En'ahr'at... I am unwell," he declared as another smile threatened to damage the muscles around his lips, muscles which had not undergone such exercise in centuries. "I think I should retire to my quarters."

He did not wait for an answer and staggered to the door, leaving a trail of chips in his path. Chips that disappeared as soon as he crossed the threshold with a very inelegant stumble.
Lt. JG Khorin Douglas [Show/Hide]
Lt. Izar Bila [Show/Hide]
Ensign Seren [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 20 [2100 hrs.] Poker Faces
Reply #22
[ Lt. Cmdr. Hathev | Holodeck 03 | Deck 21 | Vector 03 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Top Hat @Numen @Fife

Hathev was not particularly surprised to discover Seren the victor of the evening's diversion; she was, however, thoroughly taken aback by his reaction to such a development. A noise escaped him quite improperly, and his facial features were twisted into an uncouth expression. He was emotional in a most shocking manner, and to a most shocking degree -- and all this from one of the most controlled members of their species Hathev had ever met! She had been within his mind, she had seen the extent to which his emotional centre lay dormant; that it lit up now was almost unthinkable.

And yet it did, and continued to do so.

It was only as she observed his lethargic, unco-ordinated movements that she recognised inebriation in him, although from what source she could not determine. She almost felt a whisper of embarassment herself at the conduct of her subordinate, only exacerbated when he saw fit to refer to her with such a familiar epithet.

She stood as he did, on hand to catch him should his stumbling result in a fall, although reluctant to do so lest she receive any of the chaotic emotion seeming to course through him.

'That would be best,' she said as he articulated his intention to return to his quarters. 'Inform me should you require time from your duties.' There was a high likelihood that he would be fully recovered by morning, although without knowing the exact dosage of sucrose he had ingested she could not be certain, and she did not wish him to attempt counselling while yet inebriated.

He began to head for the exit, and her worry for his balance proved unwarranted; he took his leave without decorum, leaving a trail in his shuffling wake, yet he did not fall. Hathev briefly considered whether she ought to escort him further, but dismissed the thought. It was not her place, and he had not the need. She would send a missive to judge his state later this evening.

With Seren gone, the table was woefully unbalanced. Hathev did not in fact have enough familiarity with poker to know whether such a thing would prohibit them from continuing to play, yet she found she had little desire to extend the evening. Evoras had seemed reluctant to engage in conversation with her, and Cross' presence at her side had become a constant, magnetised awareness that went beyond mere distraction.

Thus: 'Perhaps this concludes our evening,' she said. 'It grows late, and no doubt we all have other calls upon our time. My thanks for your company, Lieutenant, Commander.' She offered up the customary salute. 'Peace and long life to you both.'

It was only as she reached the exit that she paused, hesitating for the briefest of moments before turning to add: 'Commander, should you wish to discuss that earlier matter, I shall be available for the remainder of the evening.'

She left quickly, before she might be tempted to embellishment.

It had not been a disastrous meeting, certainly. It had been logical to speak with Seren, and to acquaint herself with Evoras. Nevertheless, those other calls upon her time had grown all the more pressing; she was not unduly disappointed to find cause to answer them.

--FIN
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor
"Logic without ethics is no logic at all." [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer
"Live fast, die stupid." [Show/Hide]
Xelia - Civillian - Holoprogram Designer
"Envy isn't your colour, babe." [Show/Hide]