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Found 43 results

  1. Green Log of Jylliene and Nijil The long game of Galactic Risk ended days ago in a stalemate. The Nei'rrh warped along at a leisurely pace through the heart of the Federation. Their flight plan was well known and oddly, Starfleet wanted them to be cloaked the entire time. The only reason to do so was to put listening posts through tests. Now the test for them was at an end. "Jy," Nijil called out from the pilot's chair. She had went to nap a while back, the sound of the shuttle interior rather soothing once one gets relaxed. "We have arrived." He waited. "Jy?" He activated a soft chime. Jylliene stretched as she woke, hearing the sound. “Hm? Wh- oh, we’re here?” Rising, she made her way toward the front of the shuttle. He continued to shout. "Yes, I just dropped us to impulse." Resting her hand on the top of his chair, she looked out at the view as they approached the planet Orellius “I’ve needed this. We both have.” He nodded. "Shall I arm disruptors and torpedoes? That sounds more familiar." He smiled as he continued to tap controls to place them in orbit. "Pretty sure Starfleet would be here shortly. Care to take us down?" “You go ahead,” she replied as she took a seat at the console next to him. The weapons console had gone thankfully unused during this trip. It was, as Nijil had indicated, a change of pace for them. A peaceful vacation would be welcome indeed. "Alright, taking us down to our cabin." He pitched the nose down and the planet filled the entire forward view. "Shields to full, brace for atmospheric entry." Nijil patted her arm with his free hand. "Best to secure ourselves, even though the skies are clear where we are going." The blast shield covered the view ahead of them as the craft descended towards Orellius. He continued talking. "I supposed we could have beamed down, but I never like the idea of having the ship just hang up there while we are down there." He laughed. "I mean we can't land the Aegean, but anything that land should land." The interior of the Nei'rrh rumbled as it careened into intense heat of reentry. Nijil turned to Jylliene. "So are you ready to be without replicators?" “I believe so. It will be worth it.” The blast shield retracted, revealing the lush green of the planet. Although Orellius no longer kept itself isolated, the communities there preferred to stay more or less as they had been. Their cabin would be remote enough from the inhabitants that neither would be disturbed by the other. “We will have room to land nearby, right?” "Ie, oddly a platform is there for ships like this to land. I suspect we are not the first ones to seek this isolated getaway. That said, this may be a tight fit." A forest took up the entire view out of the forward view. Somewhere in the middle was their destination. "Ah see it, just over those tall trees dead ahead." "Au see that?" She asked. "Very well. Take us in SubCommander." "Aye Lieutenant Commander." Both of them smiled as they descended to their honeymoon destination.
  2. ((Joint log, Jylliene and Jorahl. Log events transpire during the sim of 5/13/2016.)) With the station on lockdown, Jylliene had not anticipated going anywhere; the summons to the shipyard, though, was approved. The officer therefore soon found herself transported off Aegis, all appropriate documentation having been filed with security to cover herself as the investigation continued. Exhaling as she stepped off the platform, the Trill made her way to the shipyard command center. I wonder how many monitors he has here? she thought to herself with a slight smile as she neared her destination. Jorahl stood by one of the holographic design stations. Work on the Aegean-class ships could be seen on all the monitors and down in the drydocks below. A different ship design seemed to have the SubCommander’s attention at the moment, though. Jylliene’s presence hadn’t gone unnoticed -- he waited for her to formally present herself before looking up. “SubCommander,” she greeted. “How may I be of service?” “Lieutenant Commander.” He stood tall, folding his arms behind his back. “I am needing preparations made for the assignment of a Romulan ship to this section. While their assignment will have them working throughout the sector, Aegis will be their home base.” She nodded slightly. A Romulan ship? Perhaps to see to the security of the refugees? “Of course. Is Starfleet aware yet of their assignment?” “The assignment is not going through the normal channels. Romulan Fleet Command has much of their time taken up with seeing to Romulus. Certain affairs are being left to Senatorial and other independently operated fleets.” He lifted an eyebrow waiting to see what deeper questions this might entice. “It will draw attention, and tensions are slightly elevated with the investigation of the An-Ward representatives’ death and disappearances, not to mention the Nei’rrh’s mission. I am sure you have some idea in mind of how you would like this handled from my end?” “The vessel has yet to depart Romulan space so I am quite sure we will be on to some other disaster by the time it arrives. In other regards I will be responsible for the upkeep and welfare of this ship and its crew. Repayment of any burden on Aegis will be handled by myself. This however is not to be publicly known.” Jylliene nodded. “You may speak freely of the matter with Captain Ramson. She is aware of the arrangement.” That unnerving look Jorahl could get crept onto his face. “This will not be shared with anyone else. Anyone. Understood?” “I understand, SubCommander. Captain Ramson and no other,” she replied. Yep, there was the Jorahl she remembered. Jorahl turned and took a PADD from the nearby console. Handing it to Jylliene, he explained, “These are the specifics of the vessel, her crew, and typical supply load outs. Please provide quarters on Aegis for those who wish to stay over when in dock. All other documentation will come through Captain Ramson.” “Of course, sir. Is there anything more I should know?” she asked. I am going to need a drink when I get back. How the elements does he plan to keep this from Chirakis? “Not at this time.” With that, the SubCommander returned his attention to his work. Jylliene nodded again, even as he had already turned away. “Have a good evening,” she added, and proceeded back toward the transporter. Elements. This should prove interesting.
  3. [Jylliene - Sometime during TBS of 2/12 - 2/19/16] It had been a very unusual turn of events that had led to Jylliene being in command of the away team. She was used to holding down the CnC from time to time, but there was a distinct difference between “You have the conn” while the captain or commander were accessible and taking command when they were not. She liked seeing how everything fit together. It was why she had chosen to pursue Operations versus Science. While she enjoyed studies in science as she grew up, she also tended to be a gofer when it came to her teachers, family, friends - always willing to go fetch whatever. Though it seemed petty, over time, she came to anticipate what was needed in familiar situations, and would be the one to remind her parents that they were out of this, or low on that, in anticipation of a coming event. She was a planner, and taking care of such responsibilities led to learning more and more of the network of needs that had to come together for a larger purpose. It wasn’t that far removed from what she liked best of science, all told - seeing the interconnectedness of things. Operations, then, was her choice. She saw it as a logical extension of those proclivities. Make sure everything is coming together, is prepared for whatever may come, as best one can determine it. She was nearly wishing for something akin to Commander Jorahl’s bank of screens - it would come in handy given life on Aegis, which had been a lesson in expecting the unexpected (understatement). She had to consider where she would go from here. Eventually, there would be opportunities (if she didn’t screw things up, that is). What did she want to do, beyond Aegis and/or beyond Ops? What would she say if she had the chance to advance in command? And how would such opportunities affect or be affected by a husband and child? Nijil and Annisha would limit her options. Cold, she thought. No, just admitting the obvious. What you do about it, that’s what makes it cold. She supposed she hadn’t really thought about any of that before pursuing their relationship to this level. She would not sacrifice her family for - Her family. She smiled slightly. It was a welcome and a sobering realization. They already felt like family, acted like family, were family, save for official vows and signatures and paperwork (and dresses, and food, and guests, and making sure Annisha doesn’t get herself into trouble during the event, and…) Stop. Anyways. She would not sacrifice them for advancement. If opportunities arose that she could accept with them, fantastic, whether on Aegis or elsewhere. But she knew anything of a more typical Federation posting would likely be out. And when it came down to it, she liked serving here, whether it had been under Captain Chirakis or under Captain Ramson. Two very different styles, but both effective, and ones she meshed with. Where else would she experience sentient tree peoples, droid cores, Horta, past civilizations blasting them with some Elements-forsaken mix of disparate musical styles (she could have done without that), and so on? Things could never be described as dull here.
  4. [Joint log, Jylliene and Nijil, shortly after the events of the sim of 1/22/16] Jylliene sat at the captain’s chair, sorting through her thoughts, recording them in a personal log for the later report that she was sure she’d be making to Captain Ramson, at the very least. Though the tree people and cores had been friendly on the planet, they had entrapped Ramson in order to communicate with her. As they found her back where she had originally been held, Jylliene inferred that the droid core was already impersonating Ramson when “she” had helped them out of the chamber and accompanied them out and to the Aegean. Captain Ramson was not a hostile person, in her experience, and Jylliene could only assume that the Tree people would have, had they asked, been told what kind of aid the Federation could lend. Either they didn’t ask, she presumed, or they didn’t like what they heard. Their actions seemed to be of a desperate people trying to fight back against the attackers, but in doing so, they had kidnapped/held Ramson, impersonated the officer and attempted to persuade Aegean to attack - no, not persuade, but coming from the apparent captain, order. Hm. Well, no, not quite that. The core had not ordered an attack as Ramson, but had said it was their - no, your only chance. You could set back their war effort, it had said, and that it would lead if they would follow. It did stop short of actually just ordering Aegean to attack, though such a suggestion carried a different weight coming from the impersonated captain versus, say, an impersonated Ops officer. The droid cores had infiltrated Aegis previously. And they stole the cloaking technology, decloaking Aegean in a very vulnerable position. At least they did try to shield Aegean from the blasts from the attackers while the captain was recovered, but… well, at least they did do that. Jylliene regretted not having caught on a bit faster, as well as not having tried to ask the core for some explanation before it fled. Now, with the additional security of the task force escorting, they were heading back toward Aegis and leaving the newly found race to their fate. Not knowing what led to this fight, she just could not have imagined jumping in the middle. They may have sent cores elsewhere, and had been seen as aggressors, triggering such a retaliation. Surely the past events of the miners vs. the Horta were a reminder that there were at least two sides to each story. Taken out of context, their actions could indeed have been grounds for an attack, and yet, she was still seeing them as the victims of the attack they had just witnessed. Who were these other beings? And when back on Aegis, would they someday find themselves regretting not having gone along with the core, who would have known more about the others’ strategies and weaknesses, and seizing the opportunity they had? Jylliene hit the com. “Bridge to engineering. Status of the cloak, Subcommander?” A hint of frustration slipped out in Korjata's response. "It will be a few more minutes. Beaming out something is easier than placing it exactly where you found it. The device shut down as it was beamed over there, which is good since as active it could overreact. Clearly they knew a little bit about how the technology operates." A crash was heard in the background. He spoke to someone away from him. "Hey, <muffled> to watch that. Sever that connection and this repair is ten hours." His voice was louder. "Sorry about that...engineers," he huffed. "You should have the cloak at 90% function in 15 minutes." She smiled slightly. Engineers like you, e’lev, she thought. “Intact and reliable is more important than fast in this case. We’re under escort; there’s no rush. Thank you, Nijil. Bridge out.” Moments later, just enough time for Jylliene to sit down, a message came to her on the Captain's station. Nijil: The cloak technology was copied and likely reverse-engineered. Let's hope these droid cores are on our side, or not captured themselves. Please note this in your talks with Captain Ramson once she returns. Jylliene: Already planned to. So far, they seem to be non-hostile, but it will be noted. Should make for an interesting talk, Jylliene thought, and wondered what she would learn from Ramson about her experience.
  5. (Joint log, Nijil and Jylliene - takes place sometime overnight between 2388.029 and 2388.030) Space is many things... Vast. Dangerous. Silent. Contained within a single galaxy among one hundred billion galaxies, within a single asteroid field among countless others, and spinning within the confines of one of thousands of space stations located in said asteroid field lay a lifeform unable to rest. While the remainder of the universe continued in a state of constant motion, this particular ceiling appeared to be frozen in time. He sensed motion however. Not in the visible movement of his environment, but in the incessant hum throughout the station. Most people couldn't hear it if they tried, but an engineer could. Especially Nijil. Even simply shutting his eyes did not hold back his restlessness. Tossing and turning stopped over an hour ago. "Jylliene?" he asked softly. Stirring in the bed beside him. “Hm?” came the reply. "Are you awa-," he stopped himself, realizing she'd not said that if she was indeed asleep. "I can't sleep." “Something bothering you?” she asked, stretching slightly, then rolling over to look at him. "No. I mean not really," he let his answer drift off, then abruptly restarted. "It's just work, or the amount of work. It's not really harder, just more work. More people? Station is the same size, problems are the same generally. Well, maybe it's not work." He swallowed. "You can tell me honestly, am I a good father?" Jylliene peered at him, then rubbed his shoulder. “Yes. Annisha is a challenge, but you love her, and she loves you.” "I hope so." He frowned, albeit out of her view. "I'm not her real father as you know and he is still al-." He stopped himself in case Annisha had bugged the room. “Doesn’t matter, e’lev. I mean - I know it matters to you, but you are still her father. Elements know it’s a bigger job than keeping this station running, but you aren’t in it alone.” The Trill reached out and squeezed his hand. For a moment he poured all his stress into her warm touch. He let out a nearly inaudible moan, the timing of "not alone" and her contact just right, "Thank you. I never really thought I'd be a parent just a few years ago and then take in a child not of my own blood. I was not prepared." “With your own, you’d at least have a few months’ warning,” she mused in agreement. With a slight smile, she added, “She only made me love you more.” Nijil squeezed her hand this time. "For some days I was worried things were moving too fast, that you think I would bond to you immediately and leave for the remains of the Romulan empire. I was in knots." “No, I’ve seen your orders. You’re stuck here,” she replied with a grin and a wink. “No, I didn’t get that sense from you at all.” "Really? I sure felt it. And I'm feeling the same all over again when she had this relapse. I could feel how vulnerable she was. I could taste the fear." “It may not be the last time she’ll do that. But we’re both here for her. And I’m here for you now - and will be.” Nijil grasped Jylliene's hand and brought it up to his lips, pressing a kiss onto the back of her hand. He then began to move her hand back to her side as he felt a wave of contentment flow over him, but not before falling fast asleep.
  6. (Just before the sim of 6/19/15) Another away team mission down to the planet, but this time, without the subterfuge - save perhaps for the dual-approach as they considered both the Horta and the new government. And this time, Jylliene was at Ops, not in the chair. That was a bit of a relief, though she knew that the opportunities to command were good ones for her continued career. And the way things had gone so far, she could definitely understand why Chirakis had kept a stock of Romulan Ale in her office. Jylliene wondered how well - or poorly - this mission was going to wrap up (though she was confident in the abilities of the team members to come to the best resolution possible, anything could happen). And in the back of her mind, she also wondered if perhaps she and Nijil needed to have a conversation about arrangements for Annisha - a thought that had been in her head for a few days now. There would be more missions in the future that they would both be on; some they may know in advance would be risky, and some that may run into unforeseen circumstances. For that matter, even on the station, an attack could endanger both of them. They would need to consider what they would want for their daughter should something happen to them. At the same time, they should consider what would become of any future children of theirs. Annisha would not have to have the same arrangements as their biological children, but it would probably be better if she did. Or would it? All something to discuss with Nijil. The past few days had been too quiet. With Annisha on Aegis, and Nijil on the away team, the quarters felt empty. She missed both of them. She hadn’t slept as well - well, okay, the first night, she slept very well. But the next two, not so much. Which is why she was awake already, at 0430. With no decent chance of any further useful sleep, Jylliene got up, got ready for duty, and made her way to the mess for coffee.
  7. (After the events of the log “Leave It”, between sims of 6/5 and 6/12/15) While Nijil may have been more worried at her disappearance, Jylliene was more worried after what would have appeared to have been the most dangerous part was over. During the moments following the transporter, while she was being dragged to Ramson’s location, she was focused on the immediate situation - there was no time to think of anything else. But once she was inside the room with Ramson, and had started to relax, the Aegean was in the back of her mind. What would they be doing? Still, with the conversation she, Ramson, and the planetside officials were in, even those concerns were kept at bay. When she and Ramson were released, that’s when things began to sink in - when she was able to simply follow the commander as they made their way back. Would the Aegean be waiting? Would the team have already been picked up by the ship and left? Somehow she doubted that. Orders or no, the best Jylliene could guess, she hadn’t been gone long enough for Nijil to have picked up the team and left, even if it was what by orders he should have done. For that matter, had the roles been reversed, she couldn’t be certain she would have left very quickly. So now that everyone was back on the Aegean - now she couldn’t get the possibilities out of her head. Jylliene lay on the bed, staring at the ceiling. Where could this mission have left Annisha? Where might it still leave her? After all, she and Nijil were still here, and the Trill knew better than to assume that all would be well. The situation here at the planet was still a bit too unknown, though she did generally feel that the government would not want to risk conflict with the Federation. After tossing, turning, and replaying scenario after scenario, Jylliene eventually snuggled closer to the Romulan beside her, allowing his rhythmic breathing to lull her into sleep.
  8. Look Who's Coming to Dinner (1 of 2) She’d seen strange messages on her PADD, but never one like this. “See you later tonight. I'll cook something up for all of us. xo” Taking into account the sender, SubCommander Korjata, and the “xo” at the end - which definitely did not refer to the executive officer - Kirel raised her eyes to regard the SubCommander’s fiance, SrLt Kital, for a long moment, then shifted her focus back to the message. Could it be that the engineer used the captain’s first name, and that Kirel and Kital were close enough together that he hit the wrong key in sending? However, the phrase “all of us” changed the meaning altogether. “I look forward to it,” Kirel replied and turned back to her work… until the message repeated itself, and a response came from SrLtn Kital, “Will be nice.” Kital’s expression had changed. A press on her PADD revealed that tr’Korjata had mistakenly chosen default group messaging. She smiled. After some time, she read, “May have invited the Captain to dinner…” “I look forward to it. Make sure you have enough for us all.” “I miss you. It has been too long.” “And I, you. See you this evening.” Nijil chopped. Nijil sliced. Nijil diced. Nijil minced. Nijil was tired. He'd not gotten to the cooking yet, but the guests had to be here for that. Three junior engineers were nice enough to bring up a large fusion-powered cooking stove that now sat in Nijil's living room next to an elongated dining table that would accommodate his guests. He hoped Annisha appreciated his cooking effort compared to her Klingon friend. No targ served here. "Daddy," she pulled at his shirt and looked up to him with her big eyes. "Why is this big thing in here?" "Oh I wanted to cook something nice for Jylliene and you. Nothing replicated. When's the last time you had an unreplicated meal?" Annisha perked up. "Oh last week at the Klingon place. He made sure my food did not move." Her father groaned at the thought of live food. "Oh, did I tell you about my new friend?" "Yes, a thousand times. Something new about her?" "Only that I invited her over." He stopped his chopping. "I mean if you can invite the Captain why not Alexis? She won't eat much." "Probably not, but let me add more." He grabbed more of each vegetable and renewed his work. She hugged his waist tightly. "Thanks, you'll really like her." The door chime sounded. "I'll get it!" Her hair bounced as she hopped to the door and pressed the entry key. "Daddy, she's here!" "Just a moment." He put down his knife and straightened up his shirt. A quick check of his hair and he walked over, prepared to see the smiling face of Jylliene, or, if a bad day, a worn out version. "My e'lev, it-" Nijil froze. "Captain, you are early, I-I thought you were someone else." The captain gave a gracious, though playful smile. “I can always come back later.” "No no, you are welcome anytime Captain. Let me, er, get you something to drink." Next time he spoke to Annisha he would go over the times when names are needed. "Replicated or something from our stock?" Now stock in a Starfleet station is limited to a small refrigeration unit, but this was from the off-world family vineyard. Doubt Chirakis has this spirit in her locked cabinet. “Some of your stock, thank you. Your father’s vineyard and its products are legendary,” she responded, admiring the decor. Her eyes fell on the youngest Korjata. “Annisha.” she said cordially. "Captain." She gave her a look. "Have you ever thought about trying a dark green rather than black? My parents wore black all of the time, but that's the Tal Shiar way." The little girl looked her squarely in the eye. "You have the Tal Shiar look, except for the ears." “I have the Tal Shiar look for good reason, young one. The black serves the same purpose as it does for the Tal Shiar. I’m sure you can figure out the rest.” "In the shaaadows..." She raised her hands and waved them about. “Indeed,” Kirel replied, leaning forward mysteriously. “In the shadows.” Back in her quarters, Alexis was curious to see what would be served at this dinner. Donning one of the new dresses Dacia bought her earlier, she quickly sent a message to Dacia asking permission, and got a quick response back saying she could. Her quarters were close by so it did not take long to arrive. She pressed the chime button and waited. "Daddy, she's here!" Annisha shouted. "Finally," Nijil said, once again putting down his knife. The Captain seemed to enjoy the Korjata wine, or the view out the long window. He wiped his hands, walked to the door, opened it, and spoke. "Long day at work swee-" "I'm not your sweetie. I'm Alexis. Is the lady of the house here?" "Well, Jylliene is not here yet...," he said and paused. "But you mean Annisha." Annisha jumped from behind her father. "Boo!" “Hey Annisha. Long time, no see.” Alexis replied sarcastically. "Wait, did I just try to scare a mind reader?" Annisha looked dejected, thinking Alexis knew she was there the entire time. "It has been long time," she continued in clear earshot of her father, who believed she had never left her room after the broadcast. Alexis giggled. “I didn’t read your mind, but I can detect your presence nearby. You’ll have to try harder than that,” she replied smiling, sauntering over to Annisha. “So, what’s for dinner?” she asked. "He's fixing noodles, vegetables and protein on this large stove thing. Said he had to modify the fire suppression so it would not kill the flame.” “Hmm sounds delish,” replied Alexis tentatively as she peaked into the living area. “So, who else is coming? Ooh, and is that the Captain there? Your father must be making something fancy.” She latched onto Annisha’s waist. "I dunno what he's making. It a big stove is all I know. He said his mother made him cook. She was often on the other side of their farm." Annisha placed her hand over Alexis' clutching hand. "He, let's go see my room. I don't think you've been there. Come on.." Alexis needed no coaxing and the bedroom door slammed behind them. "Whew, thought Annisha was going to hang around me while cooking. Bless her friend." Nijil continued to cut up fungus. "Captain, you are being quiet. I am not keeping you from something am I?" “Not at all, SubCommander. I’m observing your process while enjoying your father’s excellent vintage. It’s too smooth to interrupt with words.” She held her glass up, admiring its contents. "Well the plant does not exist anymore, so it's some of the last batch from the homeworld," he said with disappointment. "He is trying again at his new place though, but it will be a bit before it's ready. He chopped and she observed in silence until he once again broke it. "About the misdirected message. I'm glad you are a good sport about it." “Misdirected? Interesting.” She let it hang, as a smirk broke her otherwise stoic expression while she placed her lips to the glass and raised a brow. Nijil diced the last of the vegetables and wondered where Jylliene was; her shift had been over for some minutes. Lots of ships in orbit he thought. "Unless you think the evening could go somewhere. I'm sure Jylliene won't mind, if she ever gets here. Now where..." The door chimed. Nijil sighed in relief, put down his utensils, approached the door, and opened the comm. "I'm not kissing whomever is at my door. I've been burned twice." "Well then you are going to have a very lonely evening sleeping on the floor." It was Jylliene, but Nijil could not tell if she was serious. Opening the door, he went in for a peck on the cheek, but her hand blocked his attempt. "Nah ah, it's my turn to burn." Jylliene walked in and stopped as she saw the captain. "Captain, good to see you. I presume Nijil is trying to court another?" She gave the woman a grin, barely able to hold back a chuckle. Nijil's face turned green with embarrassment. Kirel turned to face him. “You’ve already consulted Captain d’Ka? Has he accepted the agreement?” "D'Ka? Agreement? I have not spoken to him." Nijil had never even met him. “I thought it was customary to consult with the bond-mate before proposing to his significant other. Am I mistaken?” The captain’s expression turned serious, the wine glass cradled in one hand. Clearly nervous and off-guard, Nijil stammered, his hand shaking. "I-I did not consult with anyone. I did not know he was your significant other; my apologies to both of you. I should contact him now to see if this meal is okay." “Unfortunately, the USS Missouri is not in system. However, the meeting can be arranged at his earliest convenience. You should know that he does not respond well to surprises, nor is he prone to sharing.” Kirel exchanged a playful glance with Jylliene. "Okay, okay. Either I will be roughed up by this d'Ka or I'm being played. In any event I am ready to start the grill." He looked around. "Where are the girls?" Giggling came from Annisha's room. At his comm, they jumped and skipped into the room and to their seats. "Jylliene, I'll begin to cook while you get ready." He heard her affirmative from the other room then turned to the Captain. "This protein will taste like chicken, so how do you like yours cooked?" “However you prefer,” she replied graciously. “I am not particular. And,” she spoke in quiet confidence, “do not worry about Captain d’Ka. He is a peaceful man.”
  9. [2 November 2387 - Stardate 2387.306 - About an hour after the beginning of Alpha shift (immediately following the sim of 5/30)] - Jylliene Jylliene sat at her station, scanning through items on her console screen, a nearly empty coffee cup in one hand. Workworkworkworkwork. The reports are so much easier to read more quickly now. I really am flying through these. I wonder what the explanation was for the whiskey and the florist? Why does a florist need whiskey? Well, though, maybe I’d need whiskey too if I were selling flowers all day. “Did you anger your wife? Your girlfriend? Your wife about your girlfriend? Is it your anniversary? Her birthday? Was it yesterday? Do you need something to encourage your superior to give you that promotion?” That probably wouldn’t work with the captain. She doesn’t seem like the flower type. A nice dagger in a display case, perhaps. Or maybe that’s what the whiskey is for. Branching out. Black is a good color on the captain. Dark blue or green or red might be too. But it would need to be very dark. Have I seen her out of uniform? Surely I have at some point. Maybe not. I don’t remember at the moment when it would have been, though. Wow, I’m already done with these reports. Nice. Now to review supplies. Can’t imagine we’d be needing supplies this soon, but who knows? Always good to be sure. The SubCommander probably would know right off the top of his head, if this were his duty. He’d look good in black too. In most of the same colors, really. I wonder if the tailors on board have enough of their material? But that’s why I’m going through this. Make sure. We’ve been going through a lot of coffee, too. Might need to check on those levels. Can’t run out of that. It looks like we have a fair bit. Good to know. Wonder how fast we’ve been going through it? What was the inventory level at last record - ah, there it is. Hm. We are burning through pretty quickly. Might need to order some now, before things get desperate and we need to ration or something. How would they decide on those rations? I mean, it’s not like this is a desperate survival - well, perhaps it would be. I mean, if security isn’t alert, they might miss something important. Or any of us here. Might try bringing two vessels to the same docking port. That would be bad in a number of rather large ways. I wonder if the SubCommander drinks coffee? He misses nothing. But that’s why all the monitors. What does he drink? Eh well. Where was I? Oh, supplies. This all looks pretty good. Only thing that stands out is that florist request. Security has that handled. I’ll let it stand until I find out what the outcome was. Maybe there is a sensible reason. I don’t know what it would be. Unless to numb one from sales. That must be it. Or maybe she’s hosting a meeting. A Floral Symposium. Wonder what that would be like? “The Latest Trends in Tulips. Arranging Azaleas for Fun and Profit. Rare Roses and You: A Study in Conservation.” Wait, they sell them, not raise them. That would be more of a gardener or arboretum topic. “The Best Vases for Violets.” I don’t think violets are really much of a florist flower. Pretty, though. Nice color, too. Do I have anything in violet? I wonder if you would try to match your clothing to your topic? Might be too much. Or might be the perfect gimmick. What was that quote? Gotta have a gimmick… Something like that. What would I host if I were at a symposium? Nothing exciting, I’m sure. Well, not to anyone outside the job. Let’s face it, it’s a bunch of monotony punctuated by moments of sheer chaos. Only hopefully organized chaos. I mean, that’s what all this record keeping directing ships stuff is for, right? So that we have the information and supplies in hand when everything goes haywire. Hard to see how cleaning materials or furniture might matter in the middle of a possible station siege, but maybe building barricades. Who knows? Ours is not to reason why, or something. We keep our stuff straight and don’t worry about why. Other than when a florist orders whiskey in bulk. My cup is empty. Here comes the Ensign. Cute kid. Probably not much younger than I am, all told, just has the youthful type of look. Ensign Lackey approached with another cup. Jylliene smiled at him, then shook her head. “No thanks, that was plenty for now. Thank you again, Ensign.” She watched him step away, then returned her attention to her console. Workworkworkworkwork...
  10. If Pillows Could Talk (You’d Never Get to Sleep) - (Jylliene/Nijil) [sD 2387.191] Jylliene cradled a cup of tea and gazed out the window of her quarters. Out there, somewhere, was Annisha. And out there, somewhere, she had to hope, she had to believe, was someone working on a way to find her and, if she were indeed in danger, to bring her back safely. She had told Nijil as much, and would continue to do so. But without knowing what exactly was being done, she was unsure that she could say anything that would give him any real assurance. She hoped her trust and her feelings were not misplaced on the matter. If she didn’t really believe it, she’d be just as eager as Nijil to do...something. Anything. Not that there was much they could do. The woman turned her attention from the window to Nijil, who seemed to be napping peacefully for now. Sitting down on the edge of the bed, she gazed down at him in thought. He had called her mother. He had called her mother to arrange this visit he hoped to surprise her with. She reached out and stroked the side of his face softly. If Annisha were indeed in danger - and the ship were not merely disabled - and she were returned to the station, what then? Well, there was no question that Nijil would likely jump to offer to take her in. Would they let him? He might be the only one Annisha would trust after this, but Jylliene was unsure if they’d allow a single officer to adopt. They could try to adopt her together, but as an uncommitted pair, that was less likely than Nijil on his own - and rightly so. Besides, what kind of family would they make? She nearly chuckled, but then glanced down at Nijil again. A happy one, she increasingly began to think. Placing the empty cup on the table, she lay back down beside him. Her eyelids drooped, and she drifted back into sleep. “Nijil!” shouted a voice off in the distance. The world started devoid of sights, smells, and touch. With no warning, he found himself in a darkened room, perhaps an alley. A mist hung over the ground extending over his head. The distant lights above glowed an eerie green. It was hot and humid. “I’m coming Annisha! Stay where you are!” Nijil shouted as he ran. The voice seemed just ahead. After fifty meters of running no girl appeared. He stopped and twisted around to see if he missed something. Frantic he called, “Annisha!” A beat in time passed. Her voice wailed, “Nijil!” The sound came from another direction some fifty meters or so away. Nijil ran even faster this time. “Annisha stay there!” The mist made breathing more of a challenge. The faster he ran the more it taxed his lungs. Running further this time only claimed the same result. His body spun around. His eyes darted all around. Annisha was not there. Nijil cried out again, but a voice interrupted. “Nijil, help me!” He asked again. “Where are you? I can’t find you!” “I’m right here,” a little voice said right behind him. He spun around, looking down. “I’m right here, or at least I was Nijil. I asked if I could live with you on the station, but you said you were too busy.” Annisha dematerialized into the fog. “Now I’m gone,” she exclaimed from an unknown distance. “I’ll come find you!” Nijil shouted. “No you will not Centurion tr’Korjata,” said the distinctive voice of Chirakis at the back of his neck. If distance mattered here, he would have jumped out of his skin. He turned to face her, but something seemed wrong with her face. Her pronounced nose ridge and evil glare caught the engineer off guard. He screamed. “Ahhhhh!” he exclaimed, finding himself in a bed with someone holding him. “Nijil?” Jylliene asked. “Are you okay?” “Wha, where am I. Oh, elements...” Nijil soon realized he had been dreaming - or more like having a nightmare. “Bad dream?” “Annisha, I could not find her. It was dimly lit. I told her I would find her, but then our Captain said I would not.” He covered both eyes with his hands. “Sometimes naps are refreshing, sometimes...less so,” Jylliene remarked. “Anything I can do to help you relax...?” she said, quirking an eyebrow at him. Nijil agreed, “Yeah.” Then he realized what she meant. “Ohh yes,” with a sly grin.
  11. A Fine Mess VI: Back from the Rock (Joint log of Jylliene and Nijil) Back again. The Aegean’s mess hall was a welcome sight for Nijil, even with the crowded tables. One thing the Federation and Romulan alliance on this vessel forgot: a properly sized mess hall. Even so it did not matter. The engineer/pilot/doctor of a Rihan simply stared into his cup of warm liquid. He asked at the counter what everyone else got that day and ordered the same. Klingon coffee. Sure, the Romulans had a version of this, even his parents grew it on their massive farm, but this brew must have been laden with bloodwine. He drank. Jylliene pulled up a chair next to Nijil and rubbed his shoulder. “I’m afraid to ask what we’re drinking,” she said, as she gazed in her own cup. Nijil smiled at her touch. “Klingon coffee and my elements it is very strong. I can appreciate why many Federation personnel drink it. Thanks for joining me on short notice. Many debriefings.” She nodded back to him. “Glad to be here with you,” she replied with a gentle smile. He reached out and held her hand as it rested on the table, did not make eye contact and spoke. “It’s too bad they don’t have any kind of method to emotionally debrief. I would not have made a good security officer. I’ve never seen so much death so close.” He drank more and winched a little. Jylliene embraced his shoulders. “I hope we can all find what peace we need when we return to Aegis.” Nijil choked as he thought of something. He squeezed her hand harder. “I hope so. This Mist station can’t be the entirety of the rebel population.” “No, I’m sure it isn’t. But I hope we can at least enjoy a reprieve before we need to deal with any more. Perhaps it will be for others to handle,” she sighed, not quite believing herself that there wouldn’t be further for their own crew to deal with. “Would you like something to eat? I never know when the next debriefing will occur.” He release her hand to tap on his PADD to look for food. He hoped a full stomach would ease his current state. Jylliene nodded. “That would be appreciated.” “I think I have chosen,” he handed the PADD to her. “I don’t know what ‘Shepherd's Pie’ is, but it sounds like something my mother would fix.” He paused a bit to think. “Favorite foods from your childhood?” She pondered that. “I don’t recall anything specific - no, wait. There was a poultry dish that we always had if we had a bad day. I remember we had it fairly often when my mother was trying for tenure for the first time,” she chuckled. Her expression turning serious, she added, “They also had it the night I left for the Academy.” “A bird? The Romulan people hold all birds in high regard and would never consume them. Had I known you participated in this type of animals for food ritual...” Nijil looked shocked. She shrugged. “Many cultures have their own specific lines they draw around what plants and animals are considered in such a way. Some would even say that though a particular animal or plant is considered too sacred for normal consumption, certain rituals would include...” she peered at him quizzically, then rolled her eyes. “You’re trying to be funny,” she chuckled. “And you are not making it easy for me. We ate birds all of the time. It’s the hunting birds we hold dear. I can’t imagine the nei’rrh bird was a species highly regarded until they got their own shuttle.” He looked at her. “So, do they have that dish?” “I think this one is similar,” she said, pointing to a listed casserole. He peered at the PADD, nodding. “You should get that, though I’m not sure this is a particularly special time special occasion foods” He gestured with both hands at the mass of people in the mess hall. “Having you here is special enough. Let me know when you are ready.” “I am - did you want me to get the food so that you can keep our seats secure?” she asked. “Yes, I will stab anyone who attempts to sit in your place.” Jylliene grinned and went to get their food. While she did so, Nijil thought back to the station, partly because of their promise to each other, but also of one item left behind: Annisha. The mission timing could not have been worse. The girl would be gone long before getting back. Her new home is far and no immediate method of contact. Perhaps she composed a letter or funny picture for him. He could see Jylliene returning with their food. Placing the food on the table, Jylliene retook her seat. “Dig in,” she said, indicating the meal before them. “Looks good for replication.” He started into his meal of meat, a starch and a vegetable. He smiled and hoped her meal was fine. He considered her for a moment and stared at her Trill spots. She peered up at him quizzically as she ate. “Something wrong?” “No, not at all...” His mind raced a bit after being caught looking. “Kids?” He coughed. She blinked at him. “Here, now? I would prefer some privacy if we’re going to work on that,” she replied with a grin. “What? No, no. I mean, well. Interest in kids?” Why did he speak? He took more of his meal into his mouth to prevent further outbursts. Did they speak of their respective siblings? He could not remember. “Eventually. And you?” she asked, wondering where his line of thinking had suddenly appeared from, but willing to follow along. “Yes. It’s been on my mind a lot.” His eyes went wide. “With my family mostly gone and watching Annisha. But she’s gone I suppose.” Another bite. He could scare her away with these questions. Jylliene nodded. “She very likely is,” she answered, and quickly took a bite of her own food to try to stifle the sorrow she felt over not seeing the girl off. Or indeed, over not seeing the girl remain with a family on Aegis. Quite a conversation stopper Nijil. He continued to finish his meal. “Well, that is great to hear. I mean not that we are bonded or anything...yet or if, you know. One does not want to be on opposite pages on the issue of children.” He threw a mental punch at himself where on the one hand he wanted kids, but said no to Annisha asking him to adopt her. Smiling affectionately at Nijil, Jylliene just chortled inwardly. She leaned toward him and whispered in his ear...
  12. [sD 2387.180 - joint log, Jylliene and Nijil, a few hours after the events of Turning Rihannsu, Part II] Nijil felt right at home on the Nei’rrh. Given enough time, however, even a home can feel like a prison. The shuttle was dark even at its brightest illumination. His quarters on the Aegean, although small, were a nice change. To his delight, Jylliene had absorbed the language and controls quite well. Reading a manual on how to fly a Romulan shuttle was no substitute for actual flight time, however. Other than the shuttle’s simulator sessions, she would need to rely on her Starfleet training. Nijil needed to not get distracted by his own memories. Eating in the shuttle triggered a strong memory of his mother’s disapproval of his entry into the Galae. Jylliene’s comfort came at the right time. If not for the mission he’d have stayed with her until the next day. Without more preparation this day is all they’d ever get. “This section of the Nei’rrh is the key to this mission and our biggest problem.” Nijil remarked, pointing to the nose of the shuttle on his PADD display. Jylliene watched intently as they sat on the small couch. “So what specifically is the issue with it?” “The radiation it may give off after using it to punch a hole in the shielding of the M-2,” he said with worry. “I just don’t know what we are dealing with here.” She pondered that. “Did science have any ideas what might come of it? Or did you have any ideas about shielding the Nei’rrh or its occupants?” Nijil smiled. “Well, they frankly don’t have as much experience as I with this shuttle. The singularity can be tricky for starters.” He flicked to another image. “My idea is to install a lead-based alloy barrier then seal it with yet another lead substrate of polymer foam.” The engineer seemed proud of his idea. “I believe if I need to run the navigational deflector intensity up to, say, 130% this should block about 95%.” The image zoomed and panned. “Will you be able to compensate for that addition?” “Well, during the firing of this beam sensors will be compromised. Electromagnetic bands surely, and a bit lesser on the subspace bands. The good news is once we light it up we can crank the active scanning systems.” He turned to smile at her. “I have drawn up some sensor profiles, but I need your knowledge to check my figures.” “I’d check your figures anytime,” Jylliene replied with a wink. “Show me the profiles,” she continued, looking over at the PADD. Nijil opened up the files, a simple view that one could dig down further for the gritty details. He got up from the table to get something for them to drink. Truthfully he turned a shade of green. “Coffee or tea?” He asked. “For this? Coffee, I believe,” she replied, as she started to review his work. Nijil got two coffees, as strong as the computer could replicate. He brought the serving tray with two cups, sugar and cream over to their table. The aroma filled the air around the table as if they jumped into a bin of roasted coffee. He inhaled deeply. “Oh...whew. That’s very aromatic,” he said as he sat the plate down. “It is,” she agreed, and took one of the cups, adding some cream, and sipped as she continued. “It all looks reasonably within specs, though I know as much about the Nei’rrh as anyone else but you - that is, next to nothing.” He nodded. “I wanted to show you more, but this mission came up, plus I don’t know how much you cared for these kinds of things. She’s a good little ship, better shape if I do say so then when I first met her. Didn’t even have a name. So, if the numbers are alright choosing the place to strike will be...interesting.” He sipped. “I’d say at their weak spot, but I guess we don’t know where that is yet,” she sighed, taking another sip of her coffee. “Too bad it is not your weak spot,” he quipped. “Corny Engineers?” “Are you making light of my ears? Our kids would have them, I, er mean if we...” He brought the cup to his mouth and drank to stop himself from talking. His eyes focused back to the PADD. Jylliene grinned at him. “So...back to the mission. Was there any information in any of the scans that gave any hint of a good approach to that rock?” “We know they have fine-tuned any cloaked surface features. Probably the first thing the Romulans in the past made sure to hide. My guess would be one, perhaps two small craft sized openings. Those would be the cloak or hologrammed features. I can only guess at how many weapon points are hidden. If the Aegean and Narada hit the rock just right a place for us to hit will become evident.” “We’ll have to hope so. If not, I suppose it’s just pick a place and cross our fingers.” “I want to impress on you something,” he said intently, grabbing both of her hands in his. “Once we light up the beam we will become a giant target in the asteroid field. They will have countermeasures and will react pretty quickly. Not that I doubt your abilities, but if anything is wrong alert me immediately. My people can be very vicious.” He let her go and gave a stare of concern. “I expect no less of anyone defending their base,” she calmly replied. “Shall we run through some flight simulations, perhaps?” He gave her a look. “You wish to go back to the shuttle? I thought it was getting depressing in there.” “Well, a change of scenery was definitely nice. I think we both needed a break. But if I’m going to be flying that thing during this mission, I want us both to feel as confident as we can about my doing so.” The woman paused briefly, then continued, “So I suppose that means going back to the shuttle, yes.” “Only if you desire.” “It’s not a matter of desire, it’s a matter of being prepared. Just like spending every moment I had reviewing the layout of Aegis as we were inbound to retake the station. This is what I think I need to do.” “Well, then. How would you like to travel?” She peered at Nijil quizzically. “...I’m sorry?” “Allow me.” Nijil tapped his comm badge. “Nei’rrh, moraere.” Before she translated his command in her head they both disappeared in a swirling green transporter beam. Then instantly, for them, they reappeared at the shuttle’s transporter pad. “Needed to test it anyhow.” Jylliene grinned, and sat down at the helm. With a deep breath, she ran her hands down the controls and said, “Let’s get started, then.” ----------- “That was very good for your first simulation run. At least they never found out who crashed into one of their asteroids.” A few hours of simulations tired both of them. Nijil teased her all the way back to his quarters. “Come on, I’m only joking.” Jylliene rolled her eyes. “You’re fortunate I’m your guest, or I’d throw you onto the floor and out of the bed for the night,” she grumbled. “At least by the end things were a fair bit smoother.” He bellowed out a laugh. “Throw me on the floor? I must be tired as well.” “You think they don’t teach us hand-to-hand in the academy, e’lev?” she replied with a smirk. “Oh I bet they do,” he said, grinning ear to pointy ear. “As you can imagine, we have several classes in daggers. They aren’t just for ceremony.” Grumbling, Jylliene entered the quarters and prepared for sleep. Nijil let her get ready first. “I’ll be a minute, are you alright?” “Mhm,” she murmured in response, as she collapsed onto the bed. Exhausted too, Nijil slipped in as best he could without waking her. Minutes later he was fast asleep. ---------- Jylliene sat bolt upright. That was..what, the third dream ending with them crashing spectacularly into the asteroid? She sighed and glanced over at the sleeping figure next to her. Kissing him lightly on the cheek, she got up and threw her uniform back on. After quietly requesting coffee from the replicator, she tapped her comm badge. “Nei’rrh, moraere.” With a shimmer, she appeared on the shuttle, and sat down at the controls to begin another simulation.
  13. [Joint log, Jylliene and Nijil - after sim of SD 2387.180] Jylliene sat at the controls of the Nei’rrh. She ran through the commands again, reading the controls aloud to Nijil, with their translations. Glancing over at him, she waited for confirmation or correction. “You are correct,” Nijil said with a slight grin. If this had been anyone else the gesture would be a bit out of place. She exhaled. “That’s a relief. Now what, rekkhai?” “So the controls are readable. How are your response times? What if I do this?” The engineer completely changed the control locations. He waited for her reaction. She took a deep breath and ran through them again. “Though perhaps, if I could make a suggestion," she added, when she was finished, "call out the commands and I’ll indicate the control? I’ll need to be able to react immediately.” He considered her request for a moment. “I can simply use Federation standard. No need to complicate things further. Getting the controls is important though - unless your interest spans beyond this mission.” Jylliene pondered that. “Let me make sure I have it down from Standard - but I’d like to practice Rihan as well,” she responded, with a glance at him. Nijil put the console into simulator mode. “Daom Itheil idh!” he exclaimed with some measure of urgency. Her hand flew to the control, activating left thrusters on full. “Ie!” She grinned. “Hann’yyo. Onre?” Nodding, he continued, “Hnahn aeh’lla!” Jylliene activated the cloak. They kept at this for some time. What she hesitated on, Nijil repeated later, and she improved. The only one she missed entirely, they repeated several times immediately, and then later. “Siu?” she eventually asked. He pulled up his PADD and answered, “A few minutes past 13:00 ship time; does not feel like it, though.” She nodded. “How long do you want to continue?” “I’m even tired of Rihan,” Nijil said while laughing. “I didn’t know that was possible,” Jylliene replied with a grin. “We have been at this for...what, four hours or so now? I *am* getting hungry.” The teacher agreed. “How about something from the shuttle replicator? Strange as it sounds this...thing reminds me of home. Can’t imagine it does for you.” He looked out the cockpit window to a gray wall at the other end of the cargo bay. The gray and green seemed to clash somehow. The longer Nijil remained in Federation facilities, the more distant Romulus became. “That sounds good. I should try to get comfortable here on the Nei’rrh.” “Good,” Nijil replied, relieved. “Let’s go to the table in the back. A little more suitable.” Jylliene nodded and followed Nijil. “Will you have to be transformed into a Rihan for this mission, or did they decide?” His curiosity was genuine. “Not that I’ve been told. I’m on loan for operating the shuttle, not so that you have yet another non-Rihan “Rihannsu” to worry about on the station.” “Is there an option to buy? You could be my slave.” He joked, only partially teasing; another part dipped in reality. She glanced at him and rolled her eyes. “You wish. What’s on the menu here?” He tapped on the console of the replicator, honestly uncertain of what the vessel offered in the way of food. “A wide selection of dinners, soups and drinks. No Romulan Ale, sadly.” “Probably good that it doesn’t,” she interjected. “I’ll take whatever you have, unless you’re getting soup. I’m a bit hungrier than that.” So was Nijil, and for other things. He perused the menu items for something she’d like as well. If they did indeed take what they had farther, he’d want her to experience what he remembered. Not the current Romulus, now a giant wasteland. The air in the shuttle felt chilled. Of course, he recalled. Earlier he had to take the life support system offline in order to implement the changes. “I think I have something you should like. Are you cold by chance?” “It’s a bit cool in here, yes." One plate of hot food materialized in the replicator. Nijil grabbed the edges carefully and placed it on the table. Then he got his own plate and sat it down. Instead of sitting, he went out of view for a moment. He came back with a blanket of some unknown material and placed it around Jylliene. “There you go, now let me get some tea.” Back to the replicator he went to order his favorite hot tea. Jylliene started to eat. The food was indeed good, and the blanket, nice; she hadn’t really noticed how cool it was in the shuttle while they were training. Now, however, she did. The tea was excellent. She did feel comfortable in here with him, though now more than any other time on the Aegean or on Aegis, she felt like she was in his realm. Nijil dug into his food as well. Some of the tastes he remembered, some not. Even with the hot tea goosebumps could be seen on his arms. Only one blanket was in that compartment - something he’d have to change later. For a moment, he merely stared at his plate as a memory crossed his mind. Nijil suddenly recited, “Don’t you go off to the Galae, Nijil, like your brother. You should stay here and help us on this farm. Business is looking up. You’d do well here. Your brother is chasing a dream and he does not need to bring you along. Now eat your greens, we’ll be getting up early tomorrow.” Jylliene looked at Nijil. “E’lev? Are you okay?” “She didn’t want me to join. Afraid I’d die out here, away from the comforts of home and Romulus.” His eyes started to water. “My brother had already gotten his commission.” She stood up, moved her plate and tea over to sit next to him, and spread out the blanket to wrap over them both. Putting her arm around him, she kissed his forehead. He took the blanket and leaned on her shoulder. “I guess this time she was wrong, even if her heart was in the right place. I really hated her for saying that, but I’d give anything to see them now. I don’t even know if I’m an uncle.” He let out a long sigh. “You are all I have and maybe that little girl back at the station. My apologies.” “No, no you don’t - no apologies for this. I’m here for you.” Nijl, in this for him fragile state, only nodded. “I believe you have the language part down. Do you have a background in linguistics?” He wiped something from his eye. “My mother studied linguistics. I learned a little of several languages. Mostly long dead ones, but root languages of others. It’s not that I knew any Romulan before coming to Aegis - but I’ve learned how to learn languages, if that makes sense? If you learn enough, you’re likely to find one that you already know that has a similar structure that you can plug the new one into." She considered this for a moment and the added, "Don't be too impressed, though. Matching commands to controls is just a matter of vocabulary. Save the compliments for when I'm able to carry on a conversation." “Sort of like understanding foreign ship systems,” he quipped while tilting his head back and forth. “I think I understand.” He then asked, his head still resting on her shoulder, “What element are you?” “Hm? What do you mean?” she replied, stroking the side of his face. “Rihans believe each of us are forged from one of four elements: Air, Ground, Fire, and Water - Jaeih, Avilh, Okhala, and Ihhuein.” He drew each elemental symbol in her hand as he spoke. “I think you can guess my parents.” “Ground - Avilh?” “Yeah. Brother was air. Sister, fire. And I... I was water.” She drew the symbol for water with her fingertip against his chest, over his heart. “I think I can understand that. What would you think I am?” “I don’t believe Fire. At least I don’t think so,” he said, grinning. “You don’t share many traits with my parents, so Ground is not likely. That leaves only Water or Air. I’d hope for a Water, but would gladly take an Air.” He looked up at her and laughed. “I guess it’s all a bit silly once you think of it.” Jylliene chuckled. “Maybe, though recognition of one’s temperament is hardly useless." She pondered that. “I fled everything that was settled and expected of me, and yet, I’m happy here in the security of the rules and directives of Starfleet and the captain - I don’t know that an Air could say that, do you think?” She pondered. “Probably Water - but I suppose perhaps we’ll find out more when we get back to Aegis..?” she added, with a grin. Nijil looked into her eyes and smiled.
  14. [Joint log, Jylliene/Jorahl/Ramson - takes place shortly after the sim, SD 2387.179] Jylliene ran the simulations of a scenario in which the Aegean would use the asteroid to block the link with the Narada, and use that link as a scan. Unfortunately, they didn’t seem terribly hopeful. When she had the computer compare the type of information they were likely to get to what had already been gleaned from the Narada, the probe, the Nei’rrh, and the Aegean's brief “mineral” scans, it calculated a ten-to-fifteen percent chance of finding anything further. How significant that information would be, if they got it at all, would be unknown. There was also the distinct risk of those on the Mist Station finally figuring out that such a scan was far from innocent, and being compelled to act. The communication link was indeed predicted to result in a spike in the station's communications system, which would be rather the opposite of subtle. Wait, a spike in the station's systems? Jylliene re-ran the simulation to confirm. She checked into the load capabilities of the Aegean and Narada, and ran the simulation again; this time, with the ships intentionally ramping up their output to 60% of their maximum. Then again, at 80% of their full load. The resulting spike predicted for the station was something that seemed quite probably capable of disrupting systems fairly significantly. Which systems might be a little bit of a gamble; but if they wanted a distraction on the station, this could do it. The Ops officer grinned slowly as she amended her report to add the last simulations. "SubCommander? The report, sir," Jylliene said, still with a lingering smile on her face as she handed him the PADD. Jorahl took the PADD, other thoughts obviously on his mind. The numbers played out more or less as he had figured, a shot in the dark. The last data set, however, gained more than a passing glance. An eyebrow raised as he glanced at the young Ops officer, then back to the simulation data. “Almost Romulan thinking here. Though, I guess a few things can be picked up when in close quarters for long enough.” Jorahl turned quickly without another word. If the wording took the Trill off guard, he didn’t have time to enjoy it. After a few brief words with Commander Ramson, both turned and headed towards the port bridge exit. As she stood, Kallah said, “The SubCommander and I will be in astrometrics. Lieutenant Kital, you have the bridge.” “Yes ma’am,” Jylliene replied as calmly as possible, watching as they left. The SubCommander’s comment, coming from him, she would take as a compliment. That she now also had the bridge? This was definitely quite a day. Jylliene sat down in the command chair, watching as the relief ops officer stepped up to the console, and exhaled quietly.
  15. [The evening/night after the (so far, what seems to be) temporary return of the Nei’rrh – SD 2387.179. Joint log, Nijil and Jylliene] Jylliene walked down the corridor toward Nijil’s quarters. She was pleased that she’d be able to see him again. Well, and not pleased, at the same time. She thought that the next time she’d see him, the mission would be complete - at least, the part that involved the most direct, immediate danger to them separately - and that she’d be able to relax. Instead, the risk is still before them. They’ll need to grapple with their decision again. They’ll need to say goodbye again. She entered the code and walked through the door. Nijil was lying down, with something over his eyes and ears. Running simulations? Reviewing feeds from the Nei’rrh? Jylliene pondered. She considered interrupting, and walked over to him, slowly, quietly, considering her possible tactics. Nijil remained motionless with his hands across his stomach. He also changed into something far more casual than his uniform. His chest moved up and down, slowly, so he was alive at least. The room seemed less lit than normal, but the engineer always kept things overly dark, only using spot lighting when needed. Jylliene crept up beside him, knelt down beside him, and softly kissed his cheek. A smile emerged over his face, then a laugh. Soon he was back to his dream state. Whatever covered his eyes and ears kept his attention. “A challenge..?” the woman intoned softly. “I think I’m up for that.” She grinned slowly. She eyed the man’s sides and then tickled him. It occurred to her that she actually had no idea if he WAS ticklish, though. Nijil of course heard none of this. The light touch of her lips on his cheek piqued his senses, but the bombardment of pink noise and light kept his body very relaxed. The adrenaline of flying would have kept him up all hours. Months had passed since he last flew. This was his first real mission with a vessel more than a light shuttle. The strange headphone/eyewear combination appeared to be working. He took a deep breath, then exhaled slowly. Seeing that he was apparently fairly deeply into the relaxed state he seemed to be in, Jylliene stopped - and instead, she stretched out beside him on the bed, and snuggled against him. Whether he’d respond or not didn’t matter - she suddenly felt greatly comforted simply being with him. The machine started to wind down its magic and bring the young engineer out of his deep relaxation. The lights kept blinking, so nothing looked different from the outside. The pink noise drew down in volume. His vision through the glasses returned to black. In moments Nijil rejoined the universe in a silent dark void. Something seemed different this time. A warmth at one side. He started to move his hand from his colder side toward the warmth. His other arm seemed pinned down, but all at once and in one quick motion he brought his hand together and attempted to retaliate with a tickle of his own. Jylliene squirmed and laughed. “You’re awake?” “I am now. This thing knew someone was around and roused me, albeit slowly.” He returned the kiss and flopped back down on his side of the one-person bed. “Sorry we did not blow the M-2, but it is good to be back.” ‘Even if just for a while,” she replied. “But ie. It’s very nice to have you back at least for tonight, e’lev. “So, how was the Aegean? Not waiting for an explosion of the Nei’rrh on the side of a rock I hope.” “Na. We were simply continuing to gather information from the feeds from the Narada and the probe. I think you gave the SubCommander an idea when you broke our link to get our attention, but I don’t know that it will work out.” Nijil looked surprised. “Oh, I gave him an idea? That’s a first. My other plan was to tap the Aegean, but I did not want hull repair duty after I got back.” “That’s assuming you’d survive to take that duty on,” Jylliene replied, and winced. “I think what you did was the better idea.” “I’ll have to thank myself,” he turned and smiled. “You seem a little tired,” he said raising a brow. “Turn around and face away from me, please.” Jylliene turned over. “Just what do you have in mind?” “Nothing sultry (?) or anything.” He began applying pressure to points on her back. One thing he did not know was if Trills were arranged the same as Romulans, but it would not hurt to try. Both on their sides also not the best position for this, but both were tired as well. “I’m tempted to say that’s a pity, but this is very nice,” she said, exhaling into a relaxed sigh. “Let me know if any of this hurts too much. Some of it will,” he smiled unseen. “Would have been nice to have you onboard, but probably not a good idea. I don’t mean you are not qualified. You had no ears.” He indicated her lack of ears by drawing two fingers along her ear and extending the touch to where the Romulan point would be. The Trill chuckled. “I think we’re all better off leaving that to those who come by them naturally, and have the accent and mastery of the language to match - instead of trying to make me into a Romulan.” “Pity,” Nijil replied in the same tone she said from before. “This is hard, the waiting, isn’t it?” Jylliene sighed, and replied softly. “It is. I was hoping the next time I’d see you would be on our way back to Aegis, and we’d be looking at only a day or two before...being home. But regardless of any of that, I’m very glad to have you here.” Nijil stopped the pressing into her back and gave her a caress. “I have an idea, but I’m not very good at it. Get up.” He released her and started to get up on his side of the narrow bed. Jylliene stood up, wondering what he had in mind, watching him. He moved into the center of the room and urged her to do the same. “Computer, music, um... human music, ah, something to dance to.” The computer chirped and began a song. Some lively music started. “We’re no strangers to love, You know the rules and so do I...” Nijil spoke quickly, “Next!” Another beat. “Young man, there’s no need to feel down...” Jylliene, this time. “Next.” Nijil shrugged. Humans had more eclectic music than he thought. Another song started. “You can’t see it, it’s electric! You gotta feel it, It’s electric...” “Um, computer, next.” A rather different sound this time. “It’s astounding...Time is fleeting...Madness takes its toll...” “Next, please, computer. Something softer, perhaps?” Jylliene ventured. The computer let out an extra chirp and a new beep as if tired of looking. A big band sound started. “Somewhere beyond the sea, somewhere waiting for me...” As the music started Nijil held out both hands. “I’ve only watched this a couple of times.” Jylliene took his hands. “That’s more than I probably have. Do lead on.” He placed one hand on her waist and held her hand with the other. As the unknown song played he tried his best to formulate a slight sense of rhythm or at the very least keep her close. The whole time he kept his eyes on her. Elements he must look a bit foolish. He had no idea what his legs were doing. This is not exactly the kind of song he wanted, but perhaps the next one. The music went on, “If I could fly like birds on high...” She felt a bit awkward, but focused instead on feeling his presence. As in the arboretum, Jylliene tried simply to remember this, to have this memory to keep. It was a good song, whatever the title, but another slow song started. Nijil would later learn it was La Vie En Rose, which did not seem to be in Federation standard. Even still, the universal translator seemed to have trouble with this one. He looked directly into Jylliene’s eyes and made a slight nod. He pulled her close and rested his head beside hers. He laid both hands on her waist and hoped she put her hands in the proper spot. He closed his eyes and started what he hoped was a slow dance. Jylliene had no idea where one’s hands WERE supposed to go, but they seemed to work around his waist. The song was pretty. There was something soothing about the language. Before the song ended he whispered something in the old tongue she’d not understand. His little friend back on the station, if she was still there, would. Maybe Jylliene would later understand it, but he meant every word. After the song finished he had the computer cease playing. He tilted his head toward the bed. “Another big day tomorrow. Let’s get to bed.” She wanted to ask him what he had whispered, but instead just kept them in her mind. Nodding, Jylliene changed and prepared for bed, climbing into what had become her side, and sat up to wait for Nijil, lying down when he was ready. He wasted no time crawling into bed and holding her once more. As they lay in silence he could hear her breathing and heartbeat. “Khnai'ru rhissiuy,” he said to her softly. “Au are more than I deserve.” As he inhaled he held her even closer. “E’lev,” she whispered back to him. “I hope I can live up to that.” Jylliene felt his hold on her loosen as his breathing slowed into peaceful sleep. She closed her eyes. They would have to say goodbye again, yes. But this was worth it. He was worth it.
  16. (Joint log – well, short log. Branch? Joint branch? Loggette? Twig? Joint Twig? – Jylliene and Nijil) [sD 2387.178, immediately following Nobody’s Fool] Jylliene woke with a start and sat bolt upright. She looked around for a moment, disoriented, then noticed Nijil blinking sleepily up at her. “What do you think of Dr. Davis?” she asked. Nijil stared at her in puzzled bewilderment. “Forget I said anything. Night, e’lev,” Jylliene responded to his questioning look. She lay back down, and fell asleep. Still confused, Nijil quipped, “What did she tell you, e’lev? Jylliene?” The only answer was the sound of peaceful breathing.
  17. [Joint log, Nijil and Jylliene] SD 2387.178, evening. At the table, Jylliene sat eating dinner. Nijil should be back anytime; she heard that he was inbound from the trial run of the shuttle. She had a plate ready for him as well. She had dressed up a bit, and was glad she had thought to take one of her dresses. If this was to be the last night before he took the shuttle out for the mission, then, she wanted this night to be at least a bit special. Usually, Nijil would insist on checking out the shuttle after a run, but not this time. The mission called for this level of attention, but something, or someone else did too. Leaving the shuttle checks to others he rushed back to his quarters. A ship this size meant getting there in only a few moments. After only those moments he stood at his door, nearly walked right in, but thought otherwise. The chime rang. Jylliene looked up, and replied, “Enter.” “Are you decent?” Nijil asked with a grin, happy to be back. He looked for her. Laughing quietly, she replied. “As tempting as it would have been, I think it would have been disastrous for our agreement not to be. Dinner,” she said, gesturing to the table. Flight weary, the engineer gleamed. “Is that the ship special I see?” He walked over to the empty seat and sat. “I ran back as fast as I could.” “Of course,” she said, grinning. “Oh, it looks delicious. I’ve only had one ‘nutrition’ bar all day.” He looked up, matching her grin. “I’m still wired from my flight. On edge on the bridge today?” “Oddly calm. I think everyone coming to terms with things...plans and such. Somber.” Picking up his knife and fork, he replied, “No anticipation of an explosion as I drive the shuttle into the side of an asteroid? Not even close today. Felt great being out there.” Jylliene could definitely see the glow to him. “Flying seems to agree with you. I’ve not seen you this happy in a while.” “You,” pointing a fork at her, “Don’t know half of it and don’t get me started on the thrill of low altitude atmospheric flight. Clears the mind. I’ll have to take you out sometime. Unless you are afraid of heights plus speed,” he remarked with a slight evil smirk. She chuckled. “I’d love to go on out sometime.” “You’d love it.” Nijil drank a good helping from his glass. “Mmmm, this is good, what is it?” “A tea infused with a light mead. Had to bring it in from Aegis. One of the barkeeps acquired it for me.” Jylliene grinned. “It IS good,” she added, and ate a bit more of her meal. “This makes the special a bit more, special. Though I’m surprised this is not synthohol, given the mission.” He too ate. “It’s a very light wine. Low content. Far less than the ale, especially once you mix it with tea as well.” She continued eating. “Do you think you’re prepared for tomorrow, then?” “I think me and the ship are ready to go. I mean look at me.” Nijil beamed even more. “What could be better. Fit for a dangerous mission with a shuttle I’m quite familiar with, my e’lev here in front of me and another waiting for me back on the station. “...I..I’m sorry, I must have misheard. Say that last part again..?” Jylliene looked confused. “My e’lev here...?” He took another bite. “No, the part about back on the station. Unless I utterly misheard you.” Jylliene was peering at him quizzically. “Oh, you mean another waiting for me? Well, I hope she’s waiting for me. We hit it off so well I just...you know perhaps she’s bonded, but it sure didn’t seem so.” He grinned and took another drink. “Is this..the norm for Rihannsu relationships?” Jylliene’s stomach was clenching into a knot. “Well, it’s not mainstream, but far from abnormal.” Nijil finished his bite. “Desperate times call for desperate measures.” “..desperate?” She poured more of the drink, and gulped half the cup down. “The Breen dealt us a severe blow. Families gone. Lineages broken. Family is very important to us. In truth this is a main tenant of our culture. This disaster has set our people back for generations. I can’t imagine having my family line snuffed out before its time.” Jylliene finished the other half. “So..I am a ‘desperate measure,’ who is intended to be one of several?” She set the cup down on the table rather firmly. And loudly. “More like highly desired. You know I love you as much as anyone. That will never change. I hope the good Doctor feels the same about me.” “Just a question - wait, Doctor? Doctor Davis, you mean?” Jylliene’s mind reeled. “I fell for or over her in the Arboretum a while back. Whatever they taught her at the Federation medical school worked wonders for me.” He took another drink. “She could get me to talk about anything. Spoke of my family at great length. She was quite the interrogator, by any standard.” “Arboretum seeems to be a good place for you,” Jylliene replied, wincing as she thought of what she had previously imagined had been a special location for the two of them, now apparently just another good place to take his women. “Jussst one question,” she added, downing half of the fresh glass of the infusion she had just poured for herself. “Yes my dear?” “If this whole thing is so deshperate, why the agreement about returning to Aegis? I’d think you’d not want to rishk your lineage dying out on the mission,” she paused, then added, her stomach adding a new knot to its collection, “...or did you alrrrready begin working on that with others...?” “Oh no, nothing like that yet. Our time should be special. Just as my time with her would be. And if I can get over my fear of telepaths, well, who knows. Yes, I should have thought about this before heading out on this mission, but an agreement is an agreement. However, if we agree to ignore our arrangement.” Nijil’s wandering eyes matched his sly smile. “As it is, I have the perfect sholution for you, then,” Jylliene replied cheerily. Pausing, she she stood up, grabbed a padd, and made a few quick entries. “Read thish...thish...is where my quarters were. I’ve got the code here. Let’sh see if the little yogaurt enthushiasts would be happy to shtart your little collection off.” Flinging him the padd, she grabbed the back of his tunic, yanked him out of his chair, and, calling for the door to open, threw him through it. “Off on your misssshion, flyboy! Good luck!” she called out as the door closed. “Out with the basht..bas..guy,” she added in a mutter as she walked back to the table, grabbed the bottle of mead, and took a swig. “Let’sh see...three for three with the men,” she grumbled to nobody. She collapsed across the bed, then added, “Maaaaybe whatshername is shingle. I’ll hafta assshker...” as her eyes closed in sleep.
  18. (or, Not The Log You’re Looking For) [Joint log, Jylliene and Nijil] Jylliene returned from her shift to the quarters she was sharing. She was looking forward to getting to know her roommates a bit; it almost felt like the Academy again. Both were junior grade Lieutenants, just as she was. The Elasian, Miraen, was in science, and the Human, Leanne, was in engineering. They had taken their meal back to their quarters, and enjoyed talking about their roles on the station. Leanne was typically gamma shift, and Miraen, beta - so although they likely would have crossed paths numerous times, their shifts meant that they hadn’t worked together before. Jylliene, of course, had seen their names on manifests, but that was the extent of it. Miraen and Leanne did know each other, though. A little too well for Jylliene’s comfort, as it turned out, as she awoke that night and became aware that the two were *not* sleeping. ---------------------- In the corridor, her bag over her shoulder and her pillow and blanket under her other arm, Jylliene juggled a padd and looked up the quarters assignment for Nijil. Yes, it did look like he had a room to himself. Privileges of rank, she thought, as she walked to the correct deck, and down the hall to his door. She rang the chime and looked down. Trill equines again. Oh well. Right now, she just wanted sleep. The sound of someone singing stopped at the sound of the chimes. Nijil had not expected anyone at his quarters this hour. Must be some engineer trying to adjust the engines in ways they didn’t understand. Too embarrassed to call over the comm system no doubt. “I told you once before not to touch the eng... oh, um...Jylliene?” His mood wind-down mood came to a halt. The family dagger lay blade down in his right hand. “Is something wrong? I thought you were asleep.” “I am apparently rooming with limber liplocked lovers. Also, I need to take up yoga. I’ve never been anywhere near as flexible as they are. But not right this moment. Sleep. Can I use a corner of your quarters, please? Or if not, do you have any of that ale with you, so I can go back, drink myself to sleep and ignore them?” “Elements, get in here.” He moved her in quickly and poked his head outside, and looked both ways. “You will not use a corner of my quarters to sleep nor will you drink any of my ale. Do you think I could sneak any of that onboard under Jorahl’s nose?” Nijil made his way to the bathroom sat down the dagger then got something out of the sink. The sound of ice in water. He held up a fresh bottle. “This is not as good as the one I gave you earlier. And about where you will sleep...” he stopped talking, he could see she meant to get more words out. She was about to protest, but stopped. “Go on. But if you mean to give me your bed and take the floor yourself, you’ll find yourself in an argument. These are your quarters, and a patch of floor in here is more than generous enough for me.” Nijil growled and smiled at the same time. “Very well, e’lev, perhaps I’ll have a sip of this and not share.” He went to grab one, or perhaps two small glasses. “Let’s not be hasty, then. Go ahead, say your piece, whatever it is,” she replied with a half-grin. “I would not dare turn you away. I’d give you the bed and you know that.” He looked at her directly. She’d already taken his mind off of Annisha’s unexpected outburst. He held both glasses in one hand and poured some ale in the other. He offered a glass to her. Jylliene accepted the glass and took a small sip. “Nijil, you have to fly a massive so-called-shuttle that barely fits through the cargo bay doors. I have no idea how you managed to get that behemoth IN, but I know you’ll also need to be rested and alert to get it back OUT without wrecking it and the Aegean. And the floor isn’t going to do that. I have ops. I man ops at Aegis every day. I need sleep too, yes, but believe me, I’ll be able to do that fine in here on the floor versus back in my room listening to those two,” she sighed, “and wanting you while they’re...” she waved her free hand, and took another sip - this one a bit larger - looking away from him. “Why...what were they doing? Wait, I don’t want to know.” Or do I? he thought. The bed had been calling his name and he sat at the corner. His hair lost its straightness and his mind too. Another sip. “I told you. Lovers. And not much trying to hide it, though I suppose they didn’t expect me to wake up while they were so occupied.” “Or while someone was in the middle of his favorite music.” His smiled extended. Jylliene gave him a very confused look, then looked at her glass, then back at him. “...wait, what?” Nijil shook his head. “I was singing. I know, when was the last time you had the notion of a Rihan singing?” “Depends, are we talking about battle songs, or some kind of romantic ballad? The first, I could easily see. The second, admittedly, not as easily. But even Klingons have their opera.” “It’s a song about betrayal from a long-time love. I don’t know if it’s translatable, yet. Not the best song to take one’s mind off of a little crying girl.” “Annisha.” She winced. “Poor thing.” “Yes. There’s a good chance I’ll not see her before she’s gone off to A’tari IV.” Nijil closed his eyes a moment. “I hope we make it back in time to see her. She said there’s still a fair bit of red tape tying things up, and that it was likely to take some time before she’d actually leave. We had a nice conversation last night. Which reminds me, you might want to change your security code. She was jumping on the bed chanting it.” “She’s very observant and has great recall.” Jylliene nodded. “That’s quite clear.” Nijil’s attention drifted to his talk with Annisha before leaving. She didn’t understand what was happening. No indication of a second thought about being adopted, but she’d expected her hero to see her off to her new home. He fell into a brief silence. A glance back at Jylliene’s dark green eyes pulled him back to now. “Elements, I must be tired. Earlier did you say ‘wanting me?’” She took a larger drink of the ale. “I think I recall saying that, yes,” Jylliene replied, quietly. She had wanted to tell him before they left Aegis, but couldn’t make the words come out. This time, she couldn’t stop them. “H'tah-fvienn...” Not so much a command, more of a request. Jylliene put her glass down and took the few steps forward toward him, her eyes lowered, then finally looked up. Nijil in turn stood up and approached. He pulled her close and held her tightly. No words. In time he broke the silence. “I think we both know what the other wants, but this is neither the time nor the place.” He led her to the bed. “No one sleeps on the floor. We both use the bed the way it’s intended, for restful sleep. It’s been a rough time for both of us.” Now they were at the blanket’s edge. After nodding, Jylliene replied, “Just one question. If - When we get back to Aegis...what then?” Nijil bent over and softly whispered...
  19. (Joint log, Jylliene and Annisha [Nijil] - SD 2387.174, night) Stepping out of the shower, Jylliene wrapped a towel around herself. It felt strange to be getting ready for bed after already having slept much of the day away - that ale had quite a kick - but she did want to try to keep to her normal sleep schedule. She walked to her wardrobe and looked through her pajamas. Reaching for a cozy pair, she stopped, her eyes falling on a recent purchase, and instead selected her new red silk nightgown and matching robe. She had purchased it with other things in mind, admittedly - but she wasn’t going to pass it up for a restful night. A little luxury before the mission. She stretched out on the couch, a fresh cup of tea - ginger and jasmine - cradled in her hands. “Computer - music, Jylliene ambient three.” The sounds of Trill flute and Vulcan harp blended in a light, soothing harmony that Jylliene found utterly relaxing. Up and down the corridors, crew members were abuzz with activity, packing and making ready to move to the Aegean or the Narada as per the crew assignments SubCommander Jorahl had given her the previous day to send out. Indeed, Jylliene was already packed as well, her bag in the corner, near the door. She was unwinding now - grabbing a night of tranquility before who knows what, assuming she was indeed still to be on the Aegean. She hadn’t heard otherwise yet. The door chime rang. Nijil? Or someone with a change in her assignment? “Come in.” A little Rihan girl stood at the doorway. Brown eyes framed by straight black hair looked up at the Trill. “Hello? Is this Nijil’s quarters?” Jylliene smiled warmly at her. “No, he’s down the corridor. Would you like me to take you to his door?” “I tried others doors and he wasn’t there either, guess he’s a busy man,” Annisha continued. Without a prompt she walked in, found the closest chair, and plopped herself down on it. “I’m Annisha.” “I’m Jylliene. Let me find out where he is for you, sweetheart.” She tapped the panel on the table. +Nijil+ “Jylliene to Nijil. Annisha is looking for you.” The female voice of the computer answered, “Sub-Centurion tr’Korjata is not onboard the station.” Jylliene pondered this. “Odd, it should have gone to his personal communicator if he wasn’t on board.” She looked over at Annisha. “Is there anything I can do for you?” “Where did he go Jyllie?” “I’m not quite sure - I imagine he may be working on one of the docked ships. That might put him out of range of the communicator.” Perhaps he’s moving that shuttle, she thought to herself - she imagined that if it were cloaked, they might get that response. “He told me he fixes things, but you do not. What do you do?” She flexed her legs in the chair she sat in. Her eyes looked all around. “I’m one of the operations officers. I monitor incoming and outgoing ships, communications, who is working where, and so on.” She paused. “Would you like something to eat or drink?” “Oh, do you have anything sweet, but not that tea?” Annisha looked excited at the prospect of not having dried leaves shoved in a cup. “Of course. Hmmm...” Jylliene scanned through a suggestions list on the display of the replicator. “Hot chocolate?” She glanced at Annisha. “Have you had that before?” She turned her nose slightly. “Tea is hot too. Sounds bitter.” “Hm. Ice cream soda?” “Ice dream soda! I’ve heard of that. No...what is it?” Jylliene pulled up the description. “Let’s see...ice cream, mixed with seltzer water, with any desired flavors - strawberry, chocolate, or vanilla are the most traditional - topped with whipped cream.” Annisha got out of her chair now. “That one. Ie, ie.” The translator had trouble with her last excited phrases. Jylliene grinned. “Which flavor?” “Choocoolatte.” “Chocolate it is.” The woman gave the commands to the replicator, which produced the drink. Jylliene took it over to Annisha and handed it to her. “Enjoy,” she said, smiling. Not knowing exactly what to expect from this drink, she took a big suck through the straw. Her face turned a different shade. “It hurts...ewww. It’s tasty though.” She kept on with the drink. “Did you hear? Someone’s taking me in! They said it could take a while. Something about tape.” “Nijil mentioned it, yes. He said you were very excited,” Jylliene replied with a smile. She felt a pang of sadness, though - somewhere in the back of her mind, she had briefly pictured the girl as being adopted by Nijil - and perhaps being hers as well one day. “I’m very glad to hear it.” “The dad seemed very quiet, stood back talking to other grownups. My mom talked all about the Tari planet. The farms, trees and open air. Lots of kids.” She studied her drink with genuine curiosity. The sound of slurping could be heard from the bottom of the glass. Jylliene nodded. “I looked up the planet on my console. It sounds like a wonderful place. I’m sure it will be nice to be able to play outside and to have a home again.” She remembered the evening in the arboretum. It WAS nice to be around trees and flowers. You could almost forget you were on a station. She liked the station, but there was something calming about natural surroundings. Annisha’s eyes widened as she remembered something. “Can you give this to Nijl? I stole back the knife from the medical place so he’d have something to remember me by.” She presented the knife once embedded in Nijil’s back. It had a makeshift bow on it. Jylliene stifled a laugh. “I’m sure he’ll be very happy you thought of him.” She accepted the knife and laid it on her table. “I’ll give it to him as soon as I see him. He still has the picture you drew for him hanging up in his quarters.” She grinned at the girl - and wondered how she managed swiping it. She’d tell Dabi just to see his reaction, if she weren’t afraid of getting Annisha in trouble with him. She smiled a big smile and let out a burp. “What? Ow. That hurt.” She put the empty glass on the table then bolted for the bed. “Wheee!” she cried and plopped on the blanket. Jylliene laughed. “Is there anyone who will be looking for you tonight? Will you be expected back anywhere? I should tell them where you are so that they don’t worry.” “They don’t know I’m gone. Two pillows and a ball are sleeping in my bed,” she replied, jumping up and down. The woman was actually beginning to get a little worried about whomever was directly overseeing the children. “You are certainly a very resourceful young lady,” she said, watching the girl. “Adults keep on telling me I’m too much a smarty. I like to watch people. I watched Nijil open a door once. One seven three three two. One seven three three two.” Jumping and jumping she went. Higher and higher, until she landed on her back on the safety of the bed. “You’d be a perfect engineer - or perhaps security officer - with those observational skills of yours.” Smiling, she replied, “I’d like to be a thought-stealer, like that one lady.” Jylliene thought about that. A thought-stealer? “The one with the little device on the side of her head? Or was it one of the people in medical?” “I never got her name. She doesn’t speak with her mouth. It’s weird.” Jylliene nodded. “Commander Ramson. I’ve had the privilege of serving under her on a ship a couple of times.” The girl appeared a bit shocked. “She knew I thought she was weird.” The Trill grinned. “Well, I don’t think that’d necessarily be an unusual thought for someone to have, if they haven’t met a Minaran before. I’m sure she wasn’t offended. She’s always been very nice when I’ve spoken with her.” “I,” she yawned. “Sure she did.” Annisha remained sprawled across the bed. “Do you need me to get you back so that the pillows and ball aren’t found in the morning?” Jylliene asked. “I don’t want to get you in trouble with security.” “What pillows? Oh, the me pillows. That’d be nice. Oh.” Annisha nearly hurt herself yawning once more. Her eyelids were harder for her to keep open. Her movements slowed to nil. “Nijil said...” Looking at the sleeping girl, the woman added in a whisper, “Or you can stay here, and I’ll take you back in the morning. Your choice - which I think you’ve already made.” She stood up, and pulled a blanket over Annisha, then sat back down at her console and sent a quick message to security. “If those in charge of the orphans realize they’re missing one - Annisha showed up here and is asleep in my quarters. I will see her safely back in the morning. -Lieutenant Jylliene Kital” Jylliene got another cup of tea and reclined on her couch. There was something that felt decidedly right about the girl being there. She hoped that her adoptive family felt similarly.
  20. [sD 2387.173] The warmth of the night air reminded Nijil of nights on Romulus. The lights were carefully controlled to be just this time somewhere on Trill’s temperate regions. The computer had all of the answers, since other than the planet name, he knew little of Trill. Any city names she threw out held no meaning. He did not mind. Now, had she been Andorian, none of this would have worked. The thought of those temperatures reminded him of the Breen. The engineer minutes before had drug a large case of items with him for this occasion. “The transporter,” he thought to himself. Lugging around that large case must have made him the laugh of the evening. Anyhow, the largest item in the case was a very nice blanket. Supposedly it was woven by a Bajoran Vedik some years ago, but the Ferengi who sold it guaranteed its origin. Soft at least, he lied on it for a few minutes and nearly drifted off to sleep. Lucky for him some mental process jerked him back. “She’ll be here soon,” he said aloud to an empty room. He settled minutes ago at a clearing close to the large willow tree. With the blanket laid flat he started to unload the rest of the case. The items had scattered along the inside due to his bumping as he carried. Nothing appeared broken. One by one he laid the contents along the outer edge of the blanket. He got a fire going. Well, not a real one. The gardener would have never let him in again if a flammable heater burned down the entire garden. The heater took no time to warm. He continued preparing for her arrival. At the entrance to the arboretum the gardener quietly told passersby the place would be closed for the evening. No woman matching the Romulan’s description had yet passed by. “Maintenance tonight, the Arboretum is closed. Come again tomorrow,” he said. Over and over, at least half a dozen times. In a break he looked both ways down the long hall stretching from the entrance. He shook his head. Perhaps that young man’s friend would not show. Still, a deal’s a deal, and the garden would be getting a new Romulan section. He waited for others to ask if it was closed. Jylliene hurried down the corridor and slowed as she neared the entrance to the Arboretum. It didn’t look open - she saw someone at the entrance turning away a couple of other visitors. She nearly turned back herself, until the gardener caught sight of her and waved her over. “Miss, come here a moment, let me get a look at you,” said the old man. She approached the gardener. “I was supposed to meet someone here - is the Arboretum closed?” “Why yes it is, young lady. What brings you here?” he asked her. “A friend - a Romulan engineer here - asked me to meet him here at 2000.” She frowned. He smiled. “I don’t know of any engineer, but you are welcome to take a look around inside. Go on in.” The old gardener turned and logged into the panel. The large doors hissed open. Jylliene smiled and nodded to the man. “Thank you,” she said, then walked inside. Starting down the main pathway, she looked around, wondering where Nijil might be - or if he were inside at all. In the background, she heard the doors close. After glancing back for a moment, she continued on her way. “Nijil? Are you in here?” Looking around, she happened to catch a glimpse of a star on the horizon of the dome. Jylliene gazed upward, immediately recognizing constellations from home. A smile spread over her face. Engineers, she thought. When they get it right, they get it *right*. “Nijil?” Nijil had been in his own thoughts; it took a moment to realize someone was calling out. “Jolan tru?” Not the best choice. He should have paid attention to more of the Trill language. He stood up and waited for another response. Hearing his greeting, she turned along a side path and hurried toward his voice. “Jolan tru - where are you, e’lev?” She turned a corner and saw the willow tree ahead, a familiar figure beside it. Jylliene grinned at Nijil as she approached. “I’m glad you made it. Things were busy all of the sudden in the Control Tower today. Welcome.” “That they were. And thank you,” she replied, looking around again. “It’s perfect. What do you have planned?” she continued, smiling. “A few things here and there for one stressed out operations officer aboard the busiest station in the sector. Come sit, I think the fondue is warmed up enough.” Nijil sat in front of the warm pot of chocolate. One of the midway restaurants got this for him, not that Ferengi. Beside the pot was an assortment of fruits. All colors and even more varieties. He speared one he thought was made of straw. Turned out just to be the name. “Here,” handing over a speared fruit. Nijil speared one of his own. Jylliene accepted, dipped the red fruit into the chocolate and tried it. “Wonderful,” she said, licking the chocolate from her lips. “Oh, you have to try that one,” she added, as she speared a bright yellow star-shaped slice. “One of the ones I recall having during my time at the Academy,” Jylliene explained as she dipped the fruit, then ate it. “And just as good as I remember. Better, perhaps.” “To be honest I don’t know what any of these are,” he said spearing the star-shaped fruit. One dip and a bite. “Oh,” his face twisted at the flavors. “Romulan food is decidedly less tart. This is...mmm very good. Mmm.” He looked her over, wondering if she translated the note fully. “You look very nice,” he complimented, his grin widening. Blushing, she replied, “Thank you. Hann’yyo, ie? You’re a very welcome sight. Not likely to be many more moments like this before we move to the Aegean.” “No, I think not,” he said undeterred. “Seems we’ll be on the same ship. Unless the Captain wants me to wait in the shuttle the duration of the trip.” He grabbed a long blue fruit and peeled its sides. “Denobulan banana, so they say.” He handed a section to her. “Very sweet. Oh - I almost forgot, the tea.” Nijil turned to the other heat source where the teapot sat. He poured some into each cup. Jylliene tried the banana section. Very sweet, indeed. But very good. She gazed at him as he poured the tea, trying to lock away each motion, recall every moment. She wanted them both back safely from the upcoming mission, but if that wasn’t to be, she was determined to try to recall every moment of a night he went to so much trouble to make for her. She took a sip of her tea and tried to remember. What was that phrase...? Arhem rruieh...something. Come on, Jylliene, one more word, what was it... “Hope you like the tea. It’s something new.” Nijil took more than a sip in of the tea. It made him a little light-headed. He told himself to take smaller drinks. “How is your wrist? I was concerned, but did not want to bother you.” She snapped out of her reverie. “Oh, it’s improving well. Barely a concern working at a console. I wouldn’t want to be trying to do anything too intricate, but I’m no surgeon,” Jylliene replied with a grin. Hwaveyiir? No, that’s not it... He looked down into his cup. “Actually I tried to see you the other night. It was too early in the morning, and I hope I did not wake you.” Another piece of chocolate-dipped fruit reached his mouth. This one popped in his mouth, the seeds bursting with flavor. The tastes should have been vetted, perhaps. “I’m sorry I missed you. You didn’t wake me. Obviously,” she replied with a grin. --- Their picnic complete, Jylliene helped Nijil pack the blanket, warmers and utensils back into the case. “It was a beautiful night, Nijil. Thank you,” she said, smiling warmly at him. Inside, she still struggled to remember that one word. “Shall I help you get this back to your quarters?” “Please, if you would. I could have had this beamed earlier, but like a madman I dragged it all over the station.” Jylliene smiled. “Gladly. It’ll give me a few more minutes walking back with you.” She picked up the case. Nijil grabbed the other end, the one without the handle. “I’ll get this end. Oh, I could have gotten an anti-grav one from cargo bay three. I do not think these things through.” Hwav...hwav..hwavhel - that was it. Jylliene smiled and helped him out with the case. ----- They stopped outside of Nijil’s quarters. “I hope you liked everything. I owe the gardener,” Nijil said, smiling as much as ever. “Absolutely,” Jylliene replied. “It was all wonderful.” She gazed at him. Arhem rruieh hwavhel. Say it. He stood there simply staring at her dark green eyes and realized the wonderful scent earlier was her. He smiled again, but said nothing about it. Moments passed. “Busy day tomorrow?” She nodded. “It will be. Oh - one thing, e’lev...” Arhem rruieh hwavhel. It’s not that difficult to say. Just say it. Before she completed her sentence, he took another chance, held her and kissed her. After some time, he let go. “Thank you and good night.” Nijil smiled the biggest smile then dragged the case into his quarters “Good night,” she replied quietly, then walked to hers and entered. As the doors closed, she collapsed onto the couch. Arhem rruieh hwavhel. Please gods, elements, prophets, fate, fortune, and everything else, we see each other safe again afterward and I get another chance to tell you.
  21. [Joint log: Jylliene and Kallah] Her mother had once said, “Be careful about whom you place on a pedestal. They do not tend to stay there.” The first real memory Jylliene had of Jorahl - other than fleeting moments in passing - was seeing him hit by the disruptor blast. That image from the Aegean viewscreen was vividly burned into her mind as the fight to retake Aegis began. To discover later that he had carefully constructed a way to survive was mind-boggling, and added to her respect for the chief engineer. It was one of Jylliene’s first tasks once back on Aegis to rewrite the shift rosters and duty assignments - to undo numerous things, actually, that Jorahl had done while the renegades were there. In doing so, she became aware of just how carefully the SubCommander had prepared for their retake of the station. She almost felt like she really knew him. It all added up to quite an internal admiration of the Romulan officer. Her vision of him warped upon truly seeing him in his element. Jylliene was well aware, and kept trying to tell herself, that it was his intimate knowledge of the details of the station’s operations that allowed him to do what he did for Aegis those weeks ago. But until now, her view was comfortable. She had admired the results without knowing what it took to produce them. Jylliene stepped out of the lift onto the Control Tower. Any attempts to hide this uncomfortable feeling Jylliene now had were in vain as Kallah Ramson stepped towards the Ops console. "You've been to Engineering." The Trill looked at Kallah, likely still with a somewhat dazed expression. “You can tell..?” The words were no more out of Jylliene’s mouth before she realized what she said. “Of course you can.” She leaned on the console, the slightest smile briefly appearing on her face. Ramson returned the smile. "It's an amazing amount of data coursing through there," she said as she casually stepped over to lean against the station. Jylliene didn’t dispute that at all. Instead, the image of the SubCommander standing at the displays flashed back into her head. She glanced at her console. “I suppose it’s what I get,” she sighed, running her hand through her hair, then wincing as she turned her injured wrist the wrong way. "I suppose I can relate well with an engineer’s insight into the systems they maintain. It's not too unlike Minaran telepathy. Our nervous system extends much farther than most species. It's more than just reading thoughts; that's almost just a byproduct. All those around me, I can hear their heartbeats, sense the same tastes and smells, be swayed by the same emotions, and..." glancing towards Jylliene's hand, "feel their pains." The Trill glanced at her helplessly. “I’m not sure that makes me feel better.” "Sorry." Kallah tried to give a reassuring smile. "But, understanding doesn't always mean feeling better. Sometimes you just have to learn from the pain." Jylliene nodded in reluctant agreement. "It's just going to take time to see this all as a safety net and not as a snare to fall into.” "Isn't it like that with so much in life. You see it in work, in families, in... love." A cheeky grin spread across Kallah's face. The Trill smiled at Ramson. “Remind me after the shift - I owe you a drink.” "Oh, what for?" Kallah asked with a grin. “Counseling fee, if nothing else. But I’d rather just call it a drink among friends.” "The latter sounds better to me. I'll take on the Athra, Breen, or Renegade Romulans. I'm not up to caring for the mental well-being of half the crew of this station." The laughter from the Ops console drew the glances of the others on the Control Tower. For the first time that day, Jylliene didn’t particularly notice - or care about - anyone watching.
  22. (Joint log, Jorahl and Jylliene) (Events take place about 2387.172) The turbolift sped its way down to Engineering. Inside, Jylliene tried to forget seeing the bank of monitors behind which SubCommander Dabi had been seated, intently watching the goings-on all over the station. She didn't really like the atmosphere in main security - she gave them their PADD and left - but then, she wasn't a security officer. They did definitely know their jobs. As the door opened, she stepped out into engineering and looked about for Jorahl. He was standing before his own array of screens, maps and status updates continually refreshing. She pulled the final PADD from her reclaimed satchel - a cross-body leather case she had found in a crate of old supplies that had been moved from place-to-place for who knows how long. When Jylliene had inquired about the items, she had been told they were terribly outdated and could be cycled back to the replicator. This, though, which had apparently once been used to carry a medical tricorder, she had kept. She liked the feel of it. So when she was handed the PADDs for hand-delivery, Jylliene retrieved it. She felt much more comfortable having them in something versus simply held. "SubCommander? Secure report," Jylliene said, as she approached him. Jorahl slowly turned his attention towards the young Trill. He had not dealt directly with the Ops officer much, though he was quite familiar with her. By nature of the position every action at Ops had an instant reaction in engineering. The shifting patterns of energy demands and computer functions, activation of sensors and the communication array, even what subfiles were activated by the Control Tower replicator told Jorahl about the actions and intent of whomever stood at the Ops station. And each officer had a unique rhythm. The Trill had not been on the station long, but the SubCommander felt he had a fair grasp on the nature of the young officer. "Thank you," Jorahl said simply as he took the Padd, his attention returning to the boards. Jylliene eyed the displays. She recognized several portions, due to their duplication at Ops. Others were unfamiliar, though she had at least some vague sense of the type of data being monitored. The Master Display Board could be much like a giant spider web. Everyone on Aegis pulled on its threads. Security's monitoring was obvious by intent. Those who know they're being watched tend to behave themselves. Engineering's vantage point could be more subtle, which Jorahl found more advantageous in most situations. More subtle and, as evidenced by the sudden chill Jylliene felt, more ominous. While cameras along the corridors and public areas of the station were practically an expectation, this seemed like something more. It made perfect sense that engineering had the capability to monitor what was displayed, but the attitude of the SubCommander standing before the board was something akin to the the person behind the scenes, pulling the strings of his puppets - whether to entertain children, slyly manipulate a ruler, or plot the end of empires. It was one thing to hear such stories; quite another to witness it - and to realize that you yourself are upon his stage. With a nod and a quiet thank you, she turned toward the lift. The Romulan engineer nodded, keeping his eyes on the boards. Even after the lift doors closed, however, Jylliene could still feel the unseen gaze.
  23. Jylliene sat at Ops, watching the activity in the area about the station. Things seemed tense on the control tower. It was understandable, given the coming plans, and the secrecy. The mission would have been enough of a challenge anyways, but with that as well - it meant that planning had to be done either in hinted phrases or while locked down. It wasn’t the type of situation that lent itself to a relaxed crew. It took Jylliene a little while to unwind at the end of a shift. She focused on the console in front of her. She was increasingly tightly strung. It happened earlier with each successive shift, and took longer to unwind each time. While Jylliene liked her posting, and the command staff, she found herself sometimes dreading the shift when she got up in the morning. She just wanted to be able to DO something. The day she spent assisting Ramson with interviews had been such a relief in that sense; she felt like she was directly assisting the coming mission. Which was ridiculous, in a sense. She knew that what she was doing right now, here at Ops, the usual things, were just as important as ever. Moreso, almost. Regular station operations did need to continue, and smoothly, while so much was going on under the surface. A lot was happening ON the surface, for that matter. Jylliene sent another of her regular reports to Chirakis, detailing the number and type of ships in the area, the amount of subspace communications, and the like. This time, the spike in subspace chatter prompted a quick message to the captain to be sure to note that portion of the report. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ OOC/Background Notes: Starfleet frequency 1486 was the comm channel the USS Enterprise-E tied into to listen to the fleet's battle against the Borg in 2373. (Star Trek: First Contact). Assumed 1000-1900 around it. Max transfer rate of 18.5 kiloquads/sec over subspace channels as per ST Tech Manual, Next Gen 11188800 max kq per 7 day standard week 11188800000 max q per wk; therefore 11.19 max Gigaquads - assuming this as ideal, using 10 as an actual use max Ops report 2387.172.pdf
  24. Jylliene stepped out of the shower. That worked better than anticipated, she thought. Even the one thing she thought would be most difficult, washing her hair, went relatively smoothly. Not *easily*, but it worked. It did help that she had her hair cut - just shoulder-length now, which seemed to her like it would be simpler. Easier to comb, definitely. All kinds of thoughts had been passing through her mind about dealing with the next couple of weeks. Admittedly, the chance that maybe she’d actually need to ask Nijil for a little help with bathing had not *exactly* been an unpleasant idea. She paused. Stop it, stop it, stop it. Jylliene changed into her pajamas - NOT the Trill equine ones this time. Solid color. Safe. Safe, she thought to herself as she got a cup of tea. His quarters were just a few doors down. And here she sat, safe on her safe couch in her safe quarters. The same safe couch that he’d slept on each time he’d been there overnight. Sure, it had been a bit soon to risk more by sharing a bed instead. But would they, in another month, in another year, still be safely holding to status quo? She looked at her tea. Her nice safe tea. I could use some of that ale right now, she thought inwardly.
  25. A Little Girl and a Strong Woman Nijil and Annisha headed down to the midway without Jylliene. The Rihan girl had more questions. Some he could answer, others embarrassing to contemplate. The life could not more fast enough. They grabbed their two drinks at a place down the walkway from that bar and sat. “So, Trills have those spots on their bodies…do they go all the way down?” Annisha asked in the middle of Nijil’s mouthful. Choking, “As far as I know they do. I do not have first-hand experience.” He held it together, finishing his slug. “And that thing, inside them,” she continued, “Does she have one of those insider her wiggling around, eating her insides?” “What? Certainly not. The thing a symbiote and does not eat a Trill’s inside. As for the wiggling, I don’t know. I’ve never asked her.” Too bad his drink did not contain alcohol he thought. “I bet it does,” a smiling Annisha said as she sucked up her drink through a long winding straw. Her eyes crossed and she twitched her head. “Oh, oh. My head hurts.” She closed her eyes now. “It’s a ‘brain freeze’. The discomfort will pass,” he said with a grin. “If you are finished I can take you back to the temporary orphanage.” The girl looked disheartened. “Aww. Can’t I stay with you?” He did not know how to answer, though he should have realized she might ask. Time froze for him before he replied. “I’d like for you as well, but this is not the time. I just can’t.” His answer felt dismissive. So many children who would never see their parents again. So many Federation races who may possibly turn their backs to Rihans in need. “We will talk about this later, okay?” With big eyes, she nodded. He got up, took her hand and headed back to the orphanage. Neither of them spoke on the way back. The engineer remained in a bit of shock at her asking him. She walked with an air of disappointment. Another rejection by the closest friend she had. For all of the fortune passing his way of late he too had few friends. What she found in him other than her hero left him baffled. After minutes of walking and turbolifts, they arrived at the passageway into the orphanage. “Now you behave yourself. I’ll do what I can to find you people to live with.” He bent down and gave her a hug. “Jolan tru Annisha.” “Jolan tru, daehlen,” she said, returning the embrace. She scurried off in the direction of the orphanage’s headmaster. The woman gave him a stern look. Nijil simply nodded and turned to go to his quarters. A long silence marked the walk back. The closer he got to his place the more he thought about Jylliene. What did I see earlier in sickbay? Jylliene’s terse explanation of her injury made little sense. She spoke to her mother and then broke her wrist. Must have been some conversation. Was it some old disagreement? Wait, she mentioned speaking of me. Was it about me? The last thing he wanted to do was mess this up. Not like the last time. Hindsight demonstrated leaving his first love had been the right move. Well, she left him, but it is unimportant now. Plasma out the manifolds. His walk took him past her quarters first. The curiosity rose as he passed each door. Was his thoughts for himself or for her? Was there a difference? How about… There it was. The door. Jylliene’s door. Perhaps if he pressed his ear against it he could hear something. No. He needed to respect her personal space and family relations. He had to know if something he did caused this. Let her calm down. She needed a friend. She is a strong woman. His hand closed in on the door chime. Creeper, give her time. Closer. She is probably resting. Closer still. My e’lev. Millimeters away… Stop. Nijil did stop. He backed his hand away from the chime. He turned and walked to his quarters a few doors down, gave a look back down the hall then entered his place.