((Alora DeVeau’s Quarters, USS Garuda))
::The door to Alora’s quarters chimed.::
DeVeau: Come in!
::Alora didn’t even turn to see who had come to visit her right away. Rather she finished pouring water into the pot in a slow, steady stream. It was easy to overfill and suddenly have puddles upon one’s shelves, so Alora never rushed. Once the pot was full and the top section lowered into its proper place, she turned to greet her visitor - except there wasn’t one. The door gaped wide to reveal nothing but the corridor beyond.::
::Outside her quarters was not a person but a robot, one of the square-sided box-like sort used for transporting items around the ship, usually things that were too large for the domestic replicators and had to come up from the industrial ones in Engineering. They also delivered mail when it had a physical component, such as care packages from home.::
Robot: Mail Delivery for Lieutenant Alora DeVeau. Personal access code required.
::Alora hadn’t expected anything. Had her parents sent her something as a surprise? She knew she was supposed to get a package from Dueld, but that had already come. So what was this? Alora crossed over to the door and gave her access code.::
::There was a moment of beeping consideration before one of the hatches in the robot’s side flew up to reveal some sort of bulky object, wrapped in fabric with an intricate pattern woven from threads the colour of sand and ochre.::
::Alora carefully grasped the object, uncertain as to what it might be. Was it fragile? She took care in handling it if that were the case. She fingered the fabric and admired the pattern a moment before she began to peel back the layers and reveal the mystery gift.::
::The object had an awkward yet familiar shape beneath the cloth, definitely meant to be held in a particular way. Clearly someone had got the concept of ‘wrapping’ but missed the concept of ‘paper’. The fabric was held closed with several discrete pins which, when removed, allowed it to slide off to reveal a Vulcan harp in the Nel Gathic style. It was smaller than Saveron’s yet clearly meant for a more petite frame, and where his was of pale Vulcan woods from the T’ralorian Preserve this one had been apparently crafted of walnut wood inlaid with a rich red cherry wood in abstract Vulcan designs. This far out it would have to be replicated but clearly some thought had gone into the programming.::
::The sight of the instrument left her breathless. Had the one who sent the instrument been there, she would have attempted to speak, but it would have been all in vain. She crouched there, still within the threshold. She drew the instrument into her embrace and cradled it. Her fingers stroked the fineness of the wood and ran along the strings. After they had explored the outlines of the instruments’ various features, they traced the curls and valleys of the designs. She tilted her head and inhaled the scent of the wood, and though it held no such redolence due to its replicated nature, she couldn’t help but imagine it, then let her breath out slowly.
Finally, after she had familiarized herself with every inch of the instrument, Alora rose. She moved past the door and into the corridor, her steps quick and purposeful as she aimed for the quarters of a certain Chief Medical Officer.
When she arrived at his door, she waited impatiently for the door to open. As soon as it did and the Vulcan stood before her, the words burst forth.::
DeVeau: Oh Saveron! Did you do this? You had to do this, you’re the only one besides my family who might, and the markings, oh Saveron it’s gorgeous, you didn’t have to do this! Thank you so much!
::The Vulcan was accustomed to Alora’s seemingly boundless energy and enthusiasm, but this particular speech was even more effusive than usual.::
Saveron: I recall that I did promise to source a more suitable instrument for you. ::He pointed out mildly.:: I am satisfied that you find it acceptable.
::When the doors opened there had initially been a gust of air into his quarters, and now a marked warmth started to leak out. He had the environmental settings on Vulcan Standard again.::
::The heat slapped at her, but Alora didn’t care. It could get even more intense and she wouldn’t mind, so intent and preoccupied was she with her new gift.::
DeVeau: Yes, but this is so beautiful, it’s not just a practise instrument, it’s a performance instrument! And the wood is divine! I love dark wood and...I can’t wait to try it!
Saveron: I would not do you the discourtesy of gifting you an inferior instrument. ::He replied evenly.:: If you are not otherwise occupied, I can teach you the appropriate tuning methods.
::He gestured with one slim hand in invitation.::
DeVeau: Are you kidding? ::Well, no, he was a Vulcan, Vulcans didn’t ‘kid’.:: I would love to.
::The Captain herself could request her presence at that very moment and Alora would be sorely tempted to ignore her. She fairly bounced into the room. Sweat beaded upon her brow but there was not a word of complaint, despite how hot she must be in her uniform. Her excitement overshadowed her discomfort.::
::A few words from the Vulcan and the environmental settings changed over to what Saveron considered a ‘visitor friendly’ compromise. It was still pretty hot but no longer liable to cause heat stroke in species accustomed to cooler climates. The air thickened and the gravity shifted back to Federation Standard.::
::Saveron noted that Alora appeared to be particularly energised this visit. He hypothesised that this might be construed as a positive reaction to his gift.::
Saveron: May I offer you refreshment?
DeVeau: Water’s good, thank you.
A JP by
Lieutenant Commander Saveron
Lt. Alora DeVeau
Chief Science OfficerUSS Garuda