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Topic: Day 09 [1910 hrs.] Happenstance (Read 55 times) previous topic - next topic

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Day 09 [1910 hrs.] Happenstance


STARDATE: 57579.81
1910 HRS.

[ Captain Ives | Turbolifts | Deck 15 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] @TheSithChicken
It was an odd thing, feeling a bit of hope over the mission's development.

After he'd came back from the mission on the Allegiant, having made contact with Director Andersson in the Covert Ops branch of Starfleet Intelligence, Captain Jien Ives had begun to get a sense of traction when it came to the seemingly impossible tasks ahead. New officers due to arrive at the courtesy of their inside man, all trusted with knowing the real development in Starfleet's admiralty, and a backdoor access to the Federation database. Intel from the ongoings in the fleet and a strengthening of the alliance with the Klingons. The Infested had yet to make their move in reaction to the halt of the Borg invasion, merely resorting to exaggerating the fallout in the Azure Nebula for the time being. Thea's repairs were underway, and the Aldean Defence Committee was warming up to their hidden presence in the cloaked shipyards.

On a personal end, Jien was still having nightmares from the Scion's Nest; seeing Semathal in his dreams. The darkness could still conjure images from his abuse, so he had yet to turn off the lights in his quarters completely - the blackness reminding him of glistening chitin and talons. He was attending his medical examinations, and he was in talks with counselling. So far, the advise was to keep shifting between his two forms in order to regain the aptitude in his morphogenic matrix, and it was becoming easier as the stiffness wore off. With this in mind, he changed... into her female form.

After she did so, the turbolift came to a stop at a deck not of her choosing, and the sliding doors parted. Jien raised her eyes, and saw a face she both knew well... and yet didn't.

Nathaniel Isley, the Savi having made him wear his Romulan heritage plainly. The sight was a stark reminder about the suspicions towards him after Skye Carver's death. Doctor Nicander had discovered that he was of no Vulcan blood, but actually a Romulan in genetic disguise. Even though Isley had been acquitted from the murder of Ensin Carver - having fired on her Valkyrie above the Black Opal - the memory of the revelation about Isley's Romulan nature was still there. It was a source of shame for Jien, in how she'd thought the worst of her bygone lover. Worse yet was how he'd actually admitted to killing Carver just for the sake of not being in the Brig, which had delayed the discovery of the real murderer.

Nicander, having been one of the Infested since before the Theurgy was commissioned.

Nonetheless, Jien gave the Lone Wolf a faint smile and stepped aside a bit, letting Isley get some room in the turbolift. Soon enough, the sliding doors closed, and they were alone. She remembered, right then, the Niga Incident, and how Isley had stepped on her lift in the middle of the outbreak, and she'd pointed her phaser rifle at him - unsure if he'd been infected or not. This time, there was no rifle between them. Merely bad blood over a confession and an accusation. A lie and a demotion. Yet before then, Isley had been someone Jien had opened herself up to, and on the Versant, Isley had been one of the officers that freed her from the Scion's Nest. All in all, things were... complicated between the two of them, which the silence in the turbolift quite aptly illustrated.

"Thea, stop this lift," said Jien quietly, but she continued to look ahead, a frown coming to her features.

"I am surprised you've decided to keep that face," she said, but not in accusation. Slowly, she turned to face Isley, folding her arms underneath her chest. "I got the impression that you hated your mother for lying to you, and had assumed you didn't want to be reminded about what she did to you when you were a child. I am merely surprised, mind. Not suggesting either choice is wrong."

The unsaid was plain. There were things to sort out, and she'd merely opted for an observation to break the ice.

Re: Day 09 [1910 hrs.] Happenstance
Reply #1
[Ensign Nathaniel Isley  | Corridor/Turbolift | Deck 15 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

After spending as many hours as he had in his fighter out on patrol, Nathaniel was glad to be done for the day. He hated patrol duty whenever he had to do it, usually nothing exciting happened so it was pretty much 8 hours flying around doing absolutely nothing but wasting fuel, as had been the case today. Oh sure some would say that by patrolling they were deterring anybody from trying anything and therefore it wasn't a waste but Nate most certainly considered it so, even more so now that he was still getting used to his stronger emotions.

As a result, after he had changed out of his flight suit and taken a shower, he'd decided to spread his legs by taking a walk around the ship. He didn't really have any idea where he was going, it was more just to stretch the legs a bit and loosen up after spending hours upon hours in his fighter. Of course how moving between decks in the even more cramped jefferies tubes could be defined as stretching he didn't know. Nor was he entirely sure he was allowed to be in them, but what they didn't know wouldn't hurt them. He'd only gone up from deck 16 to 15 before his body protested being in the confined space, it might not hurt anybody else but it was certainly hurting his body currently, so he decided to just take the turbolift to another deck and continue his walk the normal way.

Summoning the Turbolift, Nate looked down at himself and straightened out a few creases in his pants from where he'd been crawling around the tubes and didn't pay much attention to the lift as first as he heard the familar hiss of the doors opening. Looking up he was briefly frozen in place at the sight of Ives standing there. A part of him briefly wondered if Thea had known about his crawling around in her tubes and had planted the Captain here to make him pay for it, he wouldn't necessarily put it past the AI but for now he'd play it cool, after all he hadn't really done anything wrong.

He caught her faint smile as she stepped aside to make room for him and stepped inside, taking a spot beside her while leaving some room between the two. "Captain." he greeted the shapeshifter with a nod opting to keep things professional.

To say the two of them had a complicated relationship would be quite the understatement. From the whole discovery of his heritage debacle, Skye Carver's murder, the mistrust, his lie about killing her to avoid jail time and hampering the capture of the real killer to the Niga incident when she'd aimed a rifle at him, they'd been through some things and that wasn't even including their sexual history. None of which they had really addressed for one reason or another, mostly due to the chaos that generally surrounded them on all sides nowadays including the recent incident with the Savi, of which they both suffered through.

The awkwardness was even more palpable in the confined space of the turbolift and the Wolf quickly decided he'd rather be crawling around the jefferies tubes aching again or on another 8 hour patrol doing nothing than be in this situation right now, he never was one for uncomfortable silences after all. As they continued to ride the lift in silence, he heard Ives quietly ask Thea to stop the lift, a brief thought flashing through his head of if she had said it louder than she had meant to, if the quietness at which she had given the order was due to the uncomfortable silence or if his newly gained hearing had picked up on it, he supposed he would never know, although it was an interesting thought to have.

He could see out of the corner of his eye that when she had first spoke, mentioning that she was surprised he decided to keep the Romulan facial features and kept his head straight until seeing her turn slowly to face him, continuing to speak as she folded her arms under her chest, at least she was making sure that it was an expression of surprise and nothing more.

"Oh I still very much hate her for that." he said "I figure that for all I know this is how I was always meant to look and have gotten back something that was taken from me without my permission." he added "Plus it's kind of a big fuck you to her...granted she's not here to see it but it's a victory for me at least."

Shrugging he finally turned to face her "Not sure if I'll keep it though, not really adjusting to looking in the mirror and not entirely recognising the person looking back at me too well so we'll see. On the other hand I've had enough of people messing with my physical and genetic makeup for a lifetime so we'll see." Nate finished explaining.

He remained silent briefly as his mind flashed back to times when she had opened herself up to him and the time they'd spent together, those seemed like years ago now before flashing forward to his relief at finding her alive in the Scion's nest and being part of those to bring her back, despite the clear hell she had been through, perhaps more so than the rest of them, which was saying something.

Aware of his brief lapse into memory and the lingering silence filling the room again he decided to speak and break it "So how are you doing know..." he said somewhat awkwardly, with a shrug. Smooth Nate, real smooth he thought to himself. As much as they needed to discuss...well a lot of things, evidently this might well be one of those awkward small talk situations but he hoped it wouldn't be, he hated those just as much as uncomfortable silences.

Re: Day 09 [1910 hrs.] Happenstance
Reply #2
[ Captain Ives | Turbolifts | Deck 15 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] @TheSithChicken
Isley's reasoning made sense, she supposed, in how he kept the face out of spite towards his mother T'Mei, who's motivations might have been understandable if she was a Romulan undercover operative. Yet she suspected that there was far more to the story of this woman, and before she'd make her suggestion in T'Mei's regard, she'd wanted to hear what Isley thought of it. It had been one of the things on her mind since Isley's true heritage was revealed, but back then, they had been in no position to do anything about the Romulan operative.

Before she could make her inquiry, however, Isley asked how she was faring, and the question caught her a bit off guard - not having thought he cared overly about her since she'd demoted him. She cleared her throat and glanced towards the side of the turbolift.

"As expected, I still dream of the time in the dark of that place," she heard herself admitting, not having thought she'd be so open about the repercussions of her abduction. She was the Captain, and she couldn't show weakness. This was the same reason she'd sworn Isley to secrecy about what they had ended up doing in the gymnasium before the Niga incident - regardless if there had been spore-pheromones in the air systems or not. They still didn't know if the development between them were caused by the pollination, but either way, when she'd come to his modular shelter on Theta Eridani IV, there had been no pollen in her blood. Only a need to assert a distinction of her own free will, as a kind of assurance that she was in control of herself and her body. After having succumbed to the Niga virus, she had wanted to act on her own needs. Her own choices. Isley had obliged her, the promise from him still binding him to silence. Perhaps it was this very promise that had her talking right there in the turbolift.

"You need not be concerned," she said, however, and looked back at Isley with a faint smile, "with Commander Hathev in charge of the Counseling Department, I have access to the right kind of listeners when it comes to what I've been through. I might be the worst kind of patient, since I was once a counsellor myself, but I will process it all in due time."

She wanted to return to him, however, and his current situation.

"I can understand how you would refrain from any further genetic tampering being done to you," she said, and she did understand. She just wanted to tell him what she'd learned from sickbay before they could move on with the conversation to T'Mei. "If you do decide to have your appearance restored, I do get reports from Doctor Tyre stating that the android that the Savi gave us isn't anything like the actual Savi in their Correction Program. V-Nine, which is the name of the android, has even been upgraded by Thea, getting the same kind of processing matrix that she has herself. This has made V-Nine quite personable, and she fully abides to the ethical protocols of Starfleet Medical. Reports from sickbay as well as the abductees whom have decided to be restored state that the process - unlike the one on the Versant - is completely painless, and is done without the intermediate steps the Savi employed in their methods. You come to sickbay in the morning, you get sedated, and when you wake up in the late afternoon or evening, she's finished. I wouldn't have believed it myself unless I'd actually seen them before and after during the same day. In any case, I don't think you have any reason to be apprehensive if you do decide to undergo the procedure."

She paused, letting Isley think about it for a moment, before she got to the obvious question.

"Now that we have an inside man in Starfleet Headquarters, someone on our side and right behind enemy lines," she said, the name of Director Anderson of Covert Operations still on a need to know basis since otherwise he might be compromised, "I wonder what you want us to do in regard to your mother. She's a Romulan infiltrator, and sooner or later, she'll have to be brought in for questioning. She might even be deported, or forced to be a double agent somehow. I am not sure, but either way, before T'Mei's name is brought up, I wanted to speak with you and your half-brother, Drauc T'Laus, whom I believe are also aboard our ship."

A difficult decision, for certain, but perhaps Isley had already thought about it.
  • Last Edit: February 24, 2020, 11:22:55 AM by Auctor Lucan

Re: Day 09 [1910 hrs.] Happenstance
Reply #3
[Ensign Nathaniel Isley  | Turbolift | Deck 15 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

Nate listened as Ives spoke, not really surprised that she was having dreams still about that place. He'd had his fare share of them too, as had a lot of the others who had gone through that hell. He suspected that they all would for quite some time. Admittedly he was a little surprised that she had revealed as much to him considering how things had been between them as of late, yet he couldn't deny that what they had shared had allowed her to open up to him about certain things and after their time together on Theta Eridani he had swore that he would keep quiet about what had happened between them and as far as he was concerned that also extended to whatever she might share with him, he might have made some mistakes in the past but Nate knew that his word at least still meant something, even if his reputation didn't.

"I suspect we'll all being dreams like that for quite a while." he said, repeating his earlier thought out loud "Although as bad as some of us had it..." he said, motioning to the ridges now on his head "...It looked like you'd gotten it far worse than the rest of us." the Wolf said, his voice going quiet as his mind flashed back to the moment seeing her in that chamber covered in blood, wanting nothing more than to rush over and free her from her captivity yet knowing such display of emotion would have more than likely implied that something had or was going on between them,  broking the vow of silence he had promised her about their....liaisons. "It uh it didn't look good." he eventually said, hoping his voice didn't betray his calm exterior about how much he had been worried about her.

Lucky for him Ives decided to change the subject, unlucky for him it was to another subject he didn't really want to dwell on, his mother. Having still not fully mustered control of his stronger emotions, he felt his fists clench and his eyebrows furrow at the thought of T'Mei, the anger about her lies still the primary emotion he felt at the moment as he listened to Ives talk about what would happen to her, even as he glared a hole through the turbolift door. Of course their inside man would have to be an Intelligence Officer. At least until the guy is exposed and killed or implanted with one of those parasites he thought before shaking his head, evidently pessimism was another trait he'd unlocked with his change it seemed.

He tuned back in to what Ives was saying about wanting to speak with him and his half brother about what to do about their mother. When she finished speaking, Nate was silent for a few minutes, thinking about his mother and what he thought about the situation. It wasn't easy at first based on the growl that came from the back of his throat as the words liar, betrayer and deceiver seemed to orbit the mental image of the woman  his mind conjured up, causing him to take a deep breath and focus on pushing past his current anger into the memories of him growing up as a child, of the T'Mei he knew before the revelation about his heritage came out.

"I appreciate that." he told her after a few minutes "While I'm sure my mother's original subterfuge was to spy on the Federation, I don't think that's why she stayed. Thinking back on my life there were plenty of opportunities she had to flee back to Romulus both with and without my father or me knowing and she didn't. As angry as I am with her for lying to me about what I really am, I do believe she stayed and continued posing as Vulcan not because she was still spying on the Federation but because..." he paused and turned to look at her "She loved my father and I." he said "Of course I don't know if she was still continuing to spy during that time but I don't believe that to be the case." he continued "I honestly don't know what to do about her but if it's possible to talk to her at some point I would appreciate it, as I'm sure will come as no surprise I have a lot of questions that need answering." he finished.

"As for what my "brother" thinks, you'd have to ask him, we haven't exactly talked much but I'm pretty sure I spent more time with her than he did, then again she was pretending to be a Vulcan with me soooo...." Nate said with a shrug.

"At the end of the day though it doesn't change the fact that even if she stopped spying because she loved my father and I it doesn't change the fact that she started as a spy who willingly lied about who and what she was, unlike me who had no idea I was what I was, she did and I suppose at the very least she will have to answer for that." he said.

The tone in which he had spoke about his own genetic "deception" and the reaction of that revelation, especially from the woman standing opposite him right now hadn't intended to be laced with the somewhat confrontational tone that he had, but he couldn't exactly deny that he wasn't a little bitter about it. Not so much the suspicion, given the Federation's history with the Romulan Empire that was fair enough, but it was Jien's reaction that had hurt. That look of suspicion she had given him, especially given not only his own shock at the revelation but everything they had been through at that point. Sure one could say it might have been simply sex but they conversations they had had, there was a connection there that might have implied something more than just a somewhat friendship with a sexual aspect, it was something they had never discussed or even had time to really figure out but at the very least he would have thought that whatever it was they had been developing would have earned him something other than immediate suspicion from her.

Sighing and shaking his head, he looked away from her and back at the door. They hadn't had a chance to discuss whatever their sexual meetings and talks meant, if anything nor had they spoken about that revelation and the outcome of it nor really his demotion and Carver and that certainly wasn't going to help matters any. "Sorry I didn't mean for that last bit to sound like that." he said quietly, keeping his eyes on the turbolift door "Stronger Romulan emotions and everything, not really got them under control yet." he added, unsure as to what and how Ives, who was still his Captain would say...or do.

Re: Day 09 [1910 hrs.] Happenstance
Reply #4
[ Captain Ives | Turbolifts | Deck 15 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] @TheSithChicken
Of course the question about the fate of Isley's mother had weighed hard on him, and Jien gave him the time think it through. The answer was somewhat expected, him wishing - despite his betrayed feelings - to give her the benefit of the doubt. At the same time, she ought to be brought in for questioning because she'd started out on an assignment by the Tal Shiar, and there was really no way of knowing for certain what her ultimate ambitions were, even if it appeared like she'd abandoned her mission for sake of Isley and his father.

The remark about him not knowing his own true nature was a baited one, but Isley apologised for it. Still, it triggered something in Jien, recognising an accusation when she heard one. Romulan emotions enhanced by the Savi or not, Isley had no way to take those words back, and Jien wanted to settle the matter in that regard, instead of having to wait for it to surface again.

"Just like T'Mei appears to us now, being this unknown quantity with enemy ties in her past," she said and raised her chin a bit, her oaken eyes as unsmiling as the rest of her face, "I just want to remind you of the circumstances in which your true heritage was revealed, before you so readily leap at accusing me and the rest of Security for doing their job given the situation at that hour. You were also the same kind of unknown quantity."

Jien adjusted her stance a bit, tilting her head a little. "As unfair as it might feel for you, proven innocent as you are now, please remember how there was no sign of system errors in you warp fighter. All the internal sensors and the onboard computer corroborated with Thea's own sensor readings at the Black Opal. Everything pointed at you shooting down Ensign Carver, and Doctor Nicander - Infested as he proved to be - presented the fact that you weren't Vulcan at all. Specifically, that your true heritage had been carefully hidden with genetic tampering so that you might pose as a Vulcan hybrid instead of a Romulan one. This is exactly how undercover operatives infiltrate foreign powers, incidentally, just like your mother did."

Needless to say, there was another quantity to her own reaction, which she wasn't prepared to admit, and that was how she couldn't risk the chance that a Romulan spy had not just inserted himself into her crew... but between her legs as well. Being a spy of old, and the Commanding Officer of the ship, such ignorance and weakness was not just disastrous, but catastrophic. She had enough officers questioning her actions, and she'd already suffered a mutiny. The Devoted would have a field day if they learned what had happened between her and Isley, and Jien couldn't allow anything of the kind.

Regardless of these circumstances... she also felt that it was unfair to not say anything at all.

"Moreover," she added, eyes still hard, "I had come to trust and confide in you on a personal front. So, I hope you understand how you not being who you said to be... felt like a betrayal close to home. Then, when you even chose to admit to shooting down Ensign Carver, claiming absentmindedness as a reason - saying that you were daydreaming during a mission - I found it just too implausible. It led me to think you were indeed a spy, for I had great trouble accepting that you'd be such a poor officer. To make matters worse, the admission even ended the Carver investigation prematurely."

It had to be said, for despite how hurt Isley might have felt, the facts were not on his side at that time. "I thought I knew you better than that, but you disappointed me - regardless what blood you have in your veins. Of course, had we known that Doctor Maya had preformed a mind-meld on you, as well as Thomas Ravon and Lin Kae, at the behest of Doctor Nicander, we would of course have acted differently, but surely you can understand why you ended up in the Brig at that time?" Jien glanced towards the single pip in Isley's collar, just to indicate it. "It was how you got out of the Brig that earned you the demotion you still live with. Is this truly so hard to accept?"

She almost added 'Ensign' to the sentence, but stopped herself, feeling that it would create an even greater divide between them than had already separated them at the Black Opal.