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B'Etor Patterson

A Debt Paid...(Part 1 of 2)

Marius stood by the entrance of the transformed holodeck, in casual attire. He twiddled his thumbs nervously, glancing at the obtrusive gray door every so often, before looking back at the luxurious restaurant before him.


B'Etor just got off shift and knew she was running late, but she was dressed, rather nicely, for her. She walked down the hall, to the holodeck, staring at the doors, seeing the program running. She had no idea what to expect, or what she would see, but she tossed her thick black curls behind her shoulder, patted down the dress and took a deep breath, walking as the doors parted.


Marius heard the doors open. He hoped it wasn't someone random, who would wonder what the heck he was doing just standing there. He turned to look, and saw B'Etor. He smiled nervously. His mind raced for something to say. "You came." Crap. That was lame.


She looked behind her as the doors closed and disappeared. She looked at him again, her brow furrowing as her black eyes got a look of confusion. "Why wouldn't I show up? You invited me to meet you for dinner." She got a look of concern on her face. "Are you nervous? Your seem a bit.. fidgetty."


Marius shook his head, forcing himself to relax. "No, I'm fine." He took a deep breath, then motioned towards the restaurant, where one open table waited just for them. "Let's go then?"


She nodded and moved to the open table, sitting down. She looked around the dining room, nodding. "It's very pretty. Where are we?"


He sat down as well, looking around the room with some fond memory. "It's one of the finer restaurants near San Francisco, on Earth. My parents treated me here occasionally, usually for big occasions. The outside has an amazing view of the bay, especially at sunset."


She looked at him as he spoke and nodded. "I remember you telling me that you grew up on Earth, if I remember correctly." She looked down, then back to him. "I did as well, but I have never been here before."


Marius smirked. "It's an old place. Only locals know about it, like my mother." He looked out around the room, glad he had chosen to fill it with people, to have some background noise. "Where did you grow up? On Earth, that is."


She looked up, smirking slightly. "I grew up with my adopted Grandparents, in New Zealand." She bit her cheek, thinking about her childhood, and how odd, scary, and secluded her childhood was, in general.


Marius looked at her curiously, trying to make out the sudden change in her face. Before he could comment though, the waiter walked up. In a heavy, lilting Italian accent, he asked each of them, "What wood yoo like to drink-a?"


She looked up at the waiter as he arrived, blinking at his accent. She quickly looked at the menu and shrugged. "I'll have a water, please?" She looked to Marius, wondering what he would order.


Marius looked up as well. "Water for me as well please. Oh, and non-carbonated, both of them." The waiter nodded, and after jotting down the drink orders, retreated out of sight.


Marius turned to look back at B'Etor. "I almost forgot. It's practically authentic Italian, so they also sell soda water, as a drink."


She looked at him again and nodded. "I have never been to an authentic Italian resturant. But I have to thank you for not making it Klingon."


Marius looked confused. "Why's that?"


She smiled to him. "Not many people know I have a preference for Earth foods, not Klingon, nor Romulan. I just like Earth foods. Hot dogs, hamburgers, steaks. Thank you for making it normal food."


Marius laughed. "Oh, well that definitely makes it easier on me. I tend to be a picky eater, even of normal food. I didn't eat pizza until I went to the academy!"


She laughed. "Oh Pizza was a huge favorite for me as a child. I'm not that picky, just some thing I cannot eat. Like.. sushi, and liver." She cringed, just thinking about it.


The waiter returned, placing their waters on the table. He turns to B'Etor. "What wood you like to ordeer, signora?"


She blinked, hearing the waiter again and looked up at him. "Can I please have the Lasagna, with only a little bit of ricotta? Extra meat?" She nodded at her choice.


The waiter nodded, jotting it down, before turning to Marius. "And you, signor?"


Marius smiled, thinking of childhood memories. "The ...pollo arrosto?" He struggled to remember how to pronounce it properly, after years of un-use.


The waiter nodded, apparently finding his pronounciation acceptable, and again retreated.


She looked at the waiter as he left, then looked at Marius, brow furrowing. "I didn't place you as a chicken person."


Marius laughed. "I *survive* on chicken. It was one of the few things I would eat when the thought of jelly added in a peanut butter sandwich would make me reject it."


She looked at him, shaking her head. "You didn't like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? We need to end this date now. I can't even look at you." She smiled to him, acting like she was preparing to leave, then stopping her performance.


Marius laughed, while protesting defensively. "It's not my fault. I just didn't like the taste."


The waiter returned again, bearing a basket full of a variety of bread loaves, as well as a cluster of thin, crunchy breadsticks. The waiter placed these on the table, then, after filling up a saucer with olive oil, once again retreated out of sight.


She looked at the bread and oil and her black eyes lit up. "I love the dipping oil!" She took a piece of bread, breaking it, dipping it slightly.


Marius smiled and followed suit.


She lookeda t him, getting a little more comfortable now that hte ackward beginning was over. "So, Marius. I have to know, why did you ask me to dinner?" She got to the point. She wanted to know. Was it because of what happened? Was it because she was half Romulan? Was it because he wanted to get to know her better? There were a dozen reasons, and she wanted to know which one it was.


Marius opened his mouth to speak, then closed it again, frowning. After a few moments, he answered, "...I'm not really sure. There's a bunch of little reasons I guess, but none of them really sticks out."


She looked at as he paused, and smiled softly to him. "Ok, I'll accept that answer." She looked down at the bread, picking at it a little. She looked back up to him and smiled more, letting out a soft laugh. Well, as soft as possible for her.


Marius, continued to think about it, his brow furrowed at he tried to spell out a definite answer. "Well, part of it is cause of that 'deal'." He smiled, adding in, "And also to get on your good side so you won't eat me."


She looked at him, not remembering anything about a "deal". She blinked. "Deal? Refresh my memory?" She looked at him, biting her lip with a smile. "I have never eaten one of the patients. Do you really think I work so hard to save your life, carry you to the Sickbay, after a turbolift issue, just to eat you?" She laughed again.


Marius laughed. "I got it in my head. I had some weird dreams while I was unconscious in that turbolift. As for the deal, or whatever you want to call it, I seem to barely recall you saying I owed you a dinner and a movie if I got out of that alive."


She nodded, remembering now. "Yeah, because they dropped the gravity, and I had to hold your mostly unconcious body down." She laughed more, nodding. "That was an interesting event. Next time, listen to your doctor."


Marius smirked. "I've learned my lesson well." He returned to untangling his reasons. "Anyway... I guess in a way, I feel... I don't know... some sort of, connection, I guess? Admittedly, our ship is full of a wide range of species, but still, it feels kind of lonely, being one of the only half-romulans around. I feel like I can connect with you, because I feel like you might be in the same situation as I am."


Marius gazed off, contemplating his answer. He was satisfied with it, but at the same time, it gave him something new to think about.


She looked at him, an eyebrow raising. "Marius.. What are you thinking about?"


He continued to look off. "What I just said. Honestly, I hadn't ever really thought about it before..."


She looked at him, blinking a few times. "Okay..." She didn't know if she should change the subject, or let him think. She picked more at the bread, biting her cheek softly.


Marius shook his head, snapping out of his reverie. "Sorry. It's just that I've been so busy keeping the ship from falling apart, I've never had a chance to think about things."


She looked up at him. "It's alright. I think about it all the time. But, knowing we aren't alone.. will that fix it?"


"Maybe. It's a comforting thought, at the least." He smiled.


She nodded, having pulverized the bread with her picking. "Look..breadcrumbs..." She smirked and leaned back in her chair.




(Part 2 to follow)


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