(( Mess Hall, USS Triumphant ))
The award ceremony went out, and Tan received some surprising awards, and some unsurprising. He guffawed at Marshall's jokes, he smiled and clapped where appropriate, and it felt good to be recognised for a pretty crummy first day.
When it was all done, Marshall said the magic word.
Marshall: Champagne time, sir?
Reynolds: The very finest Defiant-class replicators have to offer. ::Amusement twinkled in her eyes, and she gestured toward a table where a selection of drinks — including Château Triumphant, 2397 vintage — were on offer.:: Enjoy a drink and share your congratulations while you can, before we're stampeded by Beta Shift in search of lunch.
Marshall: And well done, everyone! May the next routine inspection go half as smoothly!
Serren gave one last round of claps, took up a champaign glass, dolled himself out a nice half-glass of bubbly, then weaved his way through the crowd toward someone to whom he had been meaning to track down.
Tan: Commander Samira Neathler, right?
Tan gave his best semi-formal smile, straightening his back and extending a hand for a handshake.
Tan: I'm Serren Tan. The new guy in Sec-Tac. New meat, literally. I've met Pira -- uhh, that is to say, Lieutenant sh'Qynallahr -- over dinner, makes sense I would meet you over drinks. Congratulations on the Department Chief Ribbon. From everything I hear it's well earned.
Serren offered his glass out for clinking, then sipped the bubbly. First time having champers with this host, and oh boy did it taste different. Marlee had been a wine aunt and Alleran drank occasionally, and he couldn't remember Safine's palate, but for this guy, it tasted like fizzling boot polish left in the sun too long. He couldn't help but make a weird face.
Tan: I... fear it might be an acquired taste. This host is particularly naive I think, unfortunately. First time having real alcohol. Whoo. Is it meant to be so... bitter?
Tan defaulted to occasionally swirling the glass in lieu of drinking.
Tan: I'm looking forward to serving in your department, sir. ::he looked over his shoulder, perhaps a little guiltily, then back to her:: I uh, sorry to say, didn't do a very good on my first day. Kinda makes me feel like I don't deserve this.
Tan: I don't know if you know exactly what happened, but I'm happy to fill you in at a later date if you want. Either way, I'm eager for any suggestions you might have to improve my performance.