((Astrofori I: T’ang Wu’s Vulcan Chinese Cuisine.))
::Raissa agreed to meet Alora for lunch on the station. She had found this place the last time she was here and had wanted to try the food for herself. She found a corner booth to sit and wait for her friend, drinking water.::
::Her wandering around the ship had not improved her mood. She was beginning to feel as if nothing would. She could still do her job and she supposed that was what mattered. It wasn’t enough, but it would have to do.::
DeVeau: Hey Raissa!
::Raissa had been early and Alora - usually early, but not quite as early as her friend. As she slipped into the booth across from her friend, she smiled and then slid over to position herself in the middle of the bench.::
DeVeau: Shore leave, at last!
::Raissa raised an eyebrow at her.::
Moonsong: Technically we weren’t away that long….::faint smile.:: But I do know what you mean.
DeVeau: With the Q involved, it seemed like forever.
::That was an exaggeration, but boy was Alora glad to be out of that mess. If she never saw another Q again, it would be far too soon. A Vulcan server came over and handed them menus. After a quick thank you in Golic, Alora scanned through the offerings on the flat screen before her.::
DeVeau: Hm. What to get.
Moonsong: I’ll have the sweet and sour plomeek soup.
DeVeau: I’ll take the orange c’torr as well as an order of two fried gespar rolls. I’d like the rolls to start. Also, an order of garlic saffir. Oh, and water to drink, please.
::She offered the miniature screen back to the waiter and then focused once more on her friend.::
DeVeau: Have you ever interacted with a Q before?
::The faint smile on Raissa’s lips faded. She was still haunted by the predictions.::
Moonsong: No… and I hope never to do so again in this lifetime….
DeVeau: Amen to that. Once was far more than enough.
::The waiter arrived with a drink for Alora, asserted that their food would be out momentarily, then let the two return to their conversation.::
DeVeau: So any plans for shore leave?
::Raissa shook her head.::
Moonsong: No… but I do have some counseling sessions coming up. ::pause:: Shore leave seems to be the best time to do them.
::She folded her hands on the tabletop.::
Moonsong: Although I did hear something interesting via the ‘Gaby-vine’.
::The Gaby-vine? Amusement tickled the corners of Alora’s mouth.::
DeVeau: Before you tell me what you heard, you must assure me that you are going to take _some_ shore leave. Counselor or no, you need some downtime too.
::Raissa’s gaze drifted to stare over Alora’s shoulder.Downtime to do what? Carter was gone. CD was gone. And their absence was significant enough to make her realize how limited her life had become.::
Moonsong: Alora… if someone needs my help, I will not turn them away.
DeVeau: I’m not saying you should, just that you need shore leave too.
Moonsong: After a mission is when I’m needed most. ::sighs:: I promise to take some time. I went around to introduce myself to some of the scientists assigned to the Invicta. Happy now?
::Alora shook her head, then lifted her glass so she could sip at her water.::
DeVeau: Nope. I need a promise that you’re going to watch a movie with me. I have a ton of options.
::Raissa sighed. Alora was rather persistent with sometimes very odd tastes.::
DeVeau: Tomorrow. After dinner. My quarters. Do you like fairy tales?
::If Saveron didn’t care for fairy tales, maybe Raissa would. If not, there were plenty of other choices.
::That elicited a smirk from Raissa.::
Moonsong: Depends on the culture you cull from…
DeVeau: Good. Okay, so tell me what’s been traveling along the ‘Gaby-vine’.
Moonsong: The Incredible adventures of Cinderella in Vulcan-land.
::Alora groaned, then rolled her head around only to hide her face on her arms upon the table. After a moment she rose and sighed.::
DeVeau: It was a disaster.
Moonsong: You’re lucky he cares enough about you to learn about our culture.
DeVeau: Yeah. Well, I think he was interested in learning our culture long before he met me. I doubt he’ll ever want to do that sort of thing ever again.
Moonsong: ::frowned slightly.:: It’s not like you made him do it. Plus… he could have walked out at any time.
DeVeau: Yeah. I know.
::Could have, but didn’t. Of course, Raissa was probably implying that meant he might have similar thoughts about her, but honestly, Saveron just wasn’t the sort to be so impolite as to interrupt the holo adventure.::
DeVeau: How in the world did Gaby find out? It’s not like I told anyone.
Moonsong: How does she find out about anything. You might have been seen going in or coming out. A quick check on last program you used. A little Nurse Porchevska flair and BOOM! On the chatlines you appear.
DeVeau: Someone needs to censor her before she causes problems.
::Some people just didn’t learn. While Alora wasn’t guiltless when it came to gossip, she did try not to spread rumours around and often gave little weight to those she heard until she could go straight to the source.::
DeVeau: I hope she hasn’t spread anything further about me. That was embarrassing enough.
::Did the entire ship know? Ugh, would Adrian know? Last she heard, he’d transferred to A1 as well.::
Moonsong: I think the idea was enough…. And it is done with affection… mostly.
DeVeau: Affection? Really?
::Alora snorted and spread a napkin over her lap.::
DeVeau: Anyway, I would prefer to get off that topic. You know, to something not so completely embarrassing.
Moonsong: She did give you the cat and I doubt she’ll ever try to get you drunk again.
DeVeau: True, I do have to admit, Sachiko was a rather nice gift.
::And a sweet little thing. Every time Alora came home, the little feline greeted her with loud purrs and gentle rubs against her legs. ::
DeVeau: So other than watching a movie with me, do have anything you’d like to do to relax during shore leave?
::Raissa’s smile, slight though it was, faded.::
Moonsong: I am beginning to wonder if I ever did. Remember I do a lot of counseling during that time.
DeVeau: Yes, we’ve already established that, but you’ll not be doing counseling all of the time, which means that some of the time you’ll be eating, some of the time you’ll be sleeping, and some of the time you’ll spend on enjoyable pursuits. I was just curious as to what those pursuits might be.
Moonsong: ::sighs and pushes away her barely touched soup.:: I used to spend time with Carter until I broke up with him… Or CD until he was transferred to the Columbia.
::Alora’s own smile faded and she stretched out to pat her friend’s hand.::
DeVeau: I’m sorry, Raissa, I really am. But I’m still here. We can hang out, right?
::Raissa withdrew her hand quickly. According to Saveron, Alora was probably a Sensitive, but the last thing she wanted to do was risk the only friend she had left. After a moment, Alora withdrew her hand, brows furrowed.::
Moonsong: Of course we can…. ::pause.:: Alora, that doesn’t mean I don’t want to be touched. It just means until Saveron determines that my control is solid, I don’t want to risk harming you. It’s the reason Carter and I are no longer together. A brief touch from you is safe enough since you’re a sensitive… But I almost put Carter in sickbay… even so, it was close. I almost damaged him…
DeVeau: I’m not afraid.
::And she wasn’t. If anyone could get control of such power, it would be Raissa and Alora had confidence in her abilities. The problem was, did Raissa have confidence in herself? The counselor closed her eyes a moment.::
Moonsong: It’s so hard… I feel so alone…. I didn’t realize until I lost the two of them… All I have left is you and Saveron and Evan… Everyone else is a patient….
DeVeau: We’re all patients at some point or another.
::Except maybe Saveron, but he was a Vulcan and generally their self control was unshakeable.::
DeVeau: Have you thought about seeing a counselor? Talking about what’s going on?
::After all, counselors might sometimes need counselors too. But Raissa was shaking her head.::
Moonsong: I’ve come to realize that the counselors on the ship are not that comfortable with me. I don’t know if it’s because they don’t know me well, I’m their boss or if they’re freaked out by my telepathy.
::She sighed again.::
Moonsong: I suppose I could consider contacting one of the station counselors, but I don’t know if any have a security level high enough.
DeVeau: You never know.
::Raissa glanced at her friend. A faint smile reluctantly touched her lips.::
Moonsong: You’re going to pester me until I do, aren’t you?
DeVeau: This is not pestering.
::Alora’s eyes glimmered with a mischievous light.::
Lt. Raissa Moonsong
Chief of Counseling
Lt. Alora DeVeau
Chief of Science