((Apartment 12-56, Palais-Bourbon District, Habitat Ring))
It was funny how some Starfleet officers still referred to their apartments as “quarters.”
Old habits died hard, Wil figured.
Standing on the curved balcony that overlooked the Palais-Bourbon district, there was a big difference between his old quarters on the
Veritas and the apartment that was behind him.
His 12th floor warehouse-style apartment (complete with its own mini-mezzanine that acted as the sleeping area) had a balcony that overlooked the entire Palais-Bourbon district – in fact, most of the taller buildings in the other districts
were visible. It was a hell of a view.
He leaned his hands against the balcony’s rails, tuning in for a moment on audio the speakers in his apartment were playing and bouncing his head along to the beat.
Speakers: // A bu ma bière dans un grand verre en caoutchouc…. Ooh-wooh-ooh-ooh!… Comme un Indien dans son igloo…. Ça plane pour moi...
Ça plane pour moi…
The curved apartment was one of the lucky ones where it had a thick window to outside space.
While standing on the balcony basking in the artificial sunlight, he could turn around and see the purple glow of the solar nebula.
With luck, when pressed against the window the observer could sometimes see the flashing lights of a mining ship either coming or going from the lower terminals of the Outpost.
Below him, the laneways were sparsely populated.
Given the time of day, most people were likely distributed throughout the station somewhere, either working, shopping or relaxing.
He figured that many of the shift workers might be asleep in their apartments.
Wil took one last look over the district, before heading back inside.
The large sliding transparent doors shut behind him, as he entered the red-brick-walled apartment.
A holographic mirrored version of Wil appeared a metre in front of him.
He dusted down imaginary dust from the front of his dress uniform, before breathing in then letting out a sigh.
He wasn’t sold on the ritual, for two reasons.
One – he didn’t want to be an “Emissary” to a bunch of creatures that got their kicks from bashing into things.
If ever there was an animal species to be revered as some sort of connection to a deity, surely there were better candidates than Stellae.
Wil worried that the Hawlat, any Hawlat, would now see him as a connection to the not-very-bright animals.
Two – If was going to be an “Emissary”, why didn’t he also get a shot at the Angel’s Milk during the ceremony?
A Starfleet sanctioned reason to get off his face, and he felt like he was missing out.
: // It's not to-day, Quel le ciel me tombera sur la tête… Et que la colle me manquera... Ooh-wooh-ooh-ooh!… Ça plane pour moi
Still, he was going to be seeing Carter and Wong getting off *their*
He felt a wicked smile slowly forming.
oO Entertaining. Oo
: ::Looking at his dress uniform, smirking:: Computer, cancel mirror, stop music playback.
The holographic reflection of Wil shimmered away.
The three chorded post-punk new wave song with mostly French lyrics was replaced with silence.
The Amity XO walked out of his apartment, and towards Archer station to catch the next “Blue Line” train to…
((Ground Level, Grand Mezzanine))
: Commander Carter.
How are you feeling?
: ::Slight smirk, looking at vials of “milk”:: Well, I’ll admit to being a little bit jealous.
: You’ve earned this, mate.
Go get ‘em.
Hope you see big green bunnies or something.
With a smile, Wil stepped away from Commander Carter to a point where he could observe the ritual.
As the crowd gathered in front of Janaran Fountain, Wil spotted Keehani who smiled and moved over to stand next to him.
: ::Smiling:: Hello, “Emissary”.
: ::Quietly:: You shoosh.
She tried to stifle a laugh, before her shoulders shook and she took in a deep breath to stop herself from silently laughing.
Wil swallowed then rolled his eyes slightly.
He was about to say something more to Keehani but stopped when he heard Luminary Prarim begin to speak.
: Mu’ulahati… Hawlahanae… We are brought together by the paths of the divine, whose guidance - infinitely wise - shall shine brightly upon our spirit of trust. By this ritual shall we remove all shadow of doubt from this bond and allow it to flourish.
::To Wong and Carter:: Step forward, please.
Amity's two representatives, Lt. Commander John Carter and Lieutenant Ikaia Wong, were standing nearby in their dress uniforms and then stepped forward after the Hawlat gestured to them to come forward.
: The Federation, newcomers to the pasturelands of the Delta Quadrant, but eager to make friends. You have shown yourselves to be honest and reliable friends and resourceful allies. We are grateful for all you have done for us, and for your patience.
Please, identify yourselves under the light of the Great Spirit and recite your pledges.
: My name is Lieutenant Ikaia Wong. The Chief Medical Officer here at Amity. Both my profession as a healer and my home of Hawai’i inform my intentions. I intend to help where it’s needed; to demonstrate my aloha, my love and compassion for others
be they for my ohana or those outside of it, in everything I do. To ease suffering where it exists and to place the saving of life above myself. To act in the greater good for everyone.
With a smile, the Luminary turned his attention to his fellow Hawlat.
: Acolyte Taven, Pilgrim Sahim. As the Federation has put forth two representatives, so too shall the Hawlat. ::Motioning:: Will you please step forward as well and recite your pledges.
: I'm Minash Sahim , Hawlat pilgrim for the Angels that have guided us here. I devote myself to the knowledge, to the betterment of the Hawlat and those around them. Those that share my path, shall know me for who I am, for what I do, for what my
The Luminary held his arms out wide. With his huge green cloak hanging down, Wil considered that one strong gust of wind might have seen him carried up to the mezzanine level.
: Mu’ulahati… Hawlahanae… Trust of the Hawlat. It is not easily won, but it shines eternal. ::Providing guidance to the participants:: You may each drink of your vials. Let the light guide you to a partner and press your brows together. The Milk
shall allow for connection, as it strips away all distractions.
Wil crossed his arms and found himself leaning in a little, as the participants began to drink the milk.
It was like watching a ship crash in slow motion.
: Wait…. When is this supposed to—- ahhhh shluhp…..
To Wil’s disappointment, nothing much really happened after that.
For a few minutes, they just seemed to stand there with everyone watching on.
Sure they seemed out of it, but it was more of a concentrated level of calmed focus rather than seeing Wong and Carter jumping around like they were at a dance party on Freecloud.
After a few minutes, they all blinked their eyes, seemingly coming out of whatever induced mental state they were in.
: Your journeys are complete. Tell us - Commander Carter and Lieutenant Wong of the Federation - have you unwavering trust in your Hawlat companions?
: Yes. I’m certain I can trust in my companions.
: And you, Taven and Sahim of the Hawlat - have these Federation officers shown themselves to be true allies?
: :: blushing a little :: Yes,... with all my being, I'll put my life in the hands of this one.
: Then, it is my great honour to formally illuminate this ordained friendship. May it shine ever brighter!
There was a soft applause from the assembled crowd, which Wil joined.
: Hear, hear.
: It's been an interesting experience, one that I'll never forget.
: Since we're going to be around, I trust we'll see each other again.
Ambassador Vataix stepped towards the Hawlat delegation.
: Thank you for letting us take part and witness that beautiful tradition.
: And thank you, Ambassador, for having the open mindedness to allow it. It is a rare quality, your Federation embodies - and one which is most welcome.
: I do not know where your journeys may take you next, but please, consider Amity your home for however long you wish to stay and whenever you wish to return.
Prarim graciously bowed his head, in a gesture of politeness and gratitude.
: You are most gracious. We are called to follow the Angels wherever they shall lead - but for now, it seems as though we shall call this Nebula home. ::With a look towards Wil Ukinix:: We shall have much to discuss, Emissary, in the days ahead!
::Back to Vataix:: Ambassador, we are honored to declare ourselves your trusting friends.
When Luminary Prarim turned towards Wil, he returned a smile and a nod.
Rivi was right, it was a privilege to see the tradition.
Prarim was also right – Wil needed to be more open minded, much like the Federation he represented.
To be anointed “Emissary” to ensure that the Federation had made yet another friendship with another species was an important job, one that he would accept.
He smiled a little, taking a tiny amount of pride in his change of mind.
The Stellae were still bloody dumb though, nothing would change his mind on that.
Rivi looked towards the crew, and Wil, sensing her own feeling of pride, gave a nod back.
He’d had doubts when he accepted the position of First Officer and Starfleet attaché, but in that moment Wil felt he was
where he needed to be.
He then went to the pub.)
[End scene for Wil!]
Lieutenant Commander Wil Ukinix
Starfleet attaché and First Officer