LtCmdr Nijil & DeVeau - Raging Ramen (JP Pt 2)

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Amanda Nordstrom

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Oct 11, 2020, 1:06:18 PM10/11/20
to StarBase 118 Ops – UFOP: StarBase 118
((Starbase 118 Ops Commercial Sector - Raging Ramen))


DeVeau: Oh no, I’m very happy for her.

Despite everything, Alora couldn’t resent her friend’s happiness -
things were just...too painful.

Nijil: Then what? ::he asked, bluntly but not with a cruel tone. Instead
one of interest - he had a guilty pleasure for gossip.::

Alora cleared her throat.

DeVeau: Any way, I imagine you have been on some interesting missions. 
Do you have any that were particularly noteworthy?

::He huffed a sort of half snort in response. Just as he went to retort
their waitress had returned.::

The same lady who had spoken to Alora previously returned with a tray,
upon which were their drinks as well as their orders.  She placed
Nijil’s before him, then Alora’s before bowing.

Yuki: Please enjoy and let me know if you need anything else.  I shall
check on you soon.

Then she turned and left them alone once more.

Nijil: What did you order? ::he said as he looked at her dish. She had
spoken in another language…::

DeVeau: Udon with beef.  It’s not Ramen, but I love udon and haven’t had
it freshly made in a while.  So...interesting missions?

::He rolled his eyes. She didn’t let go of something she wanted to know
or hear about. Only changed the subjects when it suited her. She had
reflected his early question.::

Nijil: I’ve been on several missions some might consider noteworthy, but
I can't say I agree. The most ‘noteworthy’ thing is the number of people
who get hurt. ::he was bitter at the end of his sentence.::

::He didn’t show it, in fact did everything to seem like the opposite
was true, but he cared. Painfully so.::

DeVeau: I’m sorry.  I didn’t mean to...

Nijil: No - that’s on me - not the most pleasant topic. ::beat.:: How
many others have you pawned your flora onto? ::it was meant to be a
jest. Whether she took it that way remained to be seen. He was making an
effort though.::

It did spur a bit of a smile as well as a soft chuckle.

DeVeau: How many?  Gosh...I’ve lost count.  So countless.  They’re so
beautiful, and I love giving people beautiful things.  How’s yours doing?

Nijil: ::he lifted and dropped one shoulder.:: Surviving so far.

DeVeau: Let me know if you need help ‘not letting it die’.

::He breathed out of his nose quickly like a chuckle without really
doing it. At least it had become less uncomfortable and more tolerable.
Which was good, as he would have hated to try and eat a good meal with
someone less tolerable.::

DeVeau: So what made you decide to join Starfleet?

It was a common question Alora asked of those whom she didn’t know well
- motivations could say a lot about a person, and it helped provide
insight.

Nijil: I agreed with its ideals and thought I’d be … useful.

::Lame - but not entirely untrue. He also thought that joining would
better ensure a chance to finish something he started.::

DeVeau: Well, there are other ways and other places where one can be
useful.

::He raised his fork to his mouth and paused.::

Nijil: I’m sure, ::he looked at her.:: but Starfleet has better
benefits. ::deadpan, absolutely delivered very deadpan.::

::But it was a joke. Rekar tended to look out for Rekarians and their
Romulan brothers and sisters. Even more so after the destruction of
Romulus and Remus. And it didn’t seem like the best place to put his
skill to use. He cared about all peoples, so he went where all people were.

He took a bite of food..::

Alora snickered a little in the middle of a bite and had to cover her
mouth with her hand.

DeVeau: Yes.  Yes it does.  I’ll have to admit, my reason was similar. 
I wanted to make a difference, and Starfleet offers so many
opportunities.  And, of course, the ideals match mine.  So something in
common.

And they probably had more in common than they realised.

DeVeau: You were a doctor before becoming first officer, right?

Although Alora hadn’t known he’d snooped about her, she’d certainly
looked him up.  She did that with almost everyone she met, though, so it
wasn’t unusual for her.

DeVeau: Why medicine?

::He used his napkin to wipe his mouth before responding.::

Nijil: I liked the work, and I was good at it. ::he leaned back.:: I
suppose it’s what I wanted to do for a very long time.

DeVeau: I bet you were an amazing doctor.  ::There was the briefest
pause, and she added, her voice changing a little, becoming softer,
gentler, and more contemplative ::. Are an amazing doctor.

There was not even the slightest hint of sarcasm.  Yes.  More in
common.  Too much in common.  Alora sat back in her chair, her udon
finished and her gaze lowered.  Shards, this was hard.  So hard. She
didn’t want it to be hard.  Gruff as he was, she found the man
interesting.  In so many ways he was like…

::Nijil shrugged. That was a matter of opinion. Some would strongly
disagree and others would say he did exactly what doctors did - saved
lives. There were days he missed the work, the passion that came with
being in one's field. But the first officer position was a chance to
stop things before people ended up in Sickbay for all the wrong reasons.
It was another way to save lives. And he wore the burden with grace.::

Yuki: Let me take these out of your way!

Yuki had returned and swiftly collected the empty containers.  With her
was another woman, younger than her, probably late teens, and they
looked enough alike that it was obvious they were mother and daughter. 
As soon as the dirty dishes were collected, the girl set down two bowls,
one in front of Nijil, the other in front of Alora.

Yuki: Compliments of the establishment.  Enjoy!

With that, the two servers left and Alora stared at the bowl in front of
her.  While the establishment generally served Japanese ramen and other
noodle dishes with a flair for authenticity, evidently they had resorted
to a more westen part of the Earth approach to dessert.  In the bowl
were two scoops of ice cream.  One vanilla, one chocolate.    She didn’t
move.  Didn’t speak, just stared in utter silence.

((Flashback))

Alora had gone to the party - because that’s the kind of person she
was.  She enjoyed people and she enjoyed celebrations, and this one had
included cake and ice cream.  A rich, Bolian version of chocolate had
been enjoyed by all, and Alora had even managed to take a slice and wrap
it up.  In particular, it was a treat because it hadn’t been
replicated.  Someone had managed to get some real ingredients and bake
it using a holographic kitchen, and the result was well worth the time
and effort.  The ice cream had been replicated, but the recipe had been
particularly delicious.  Vanilla had been available, but Alora was
always devoted to chocolate.

Once the party had wound down, she said her goodbyes and collected the
plate with her booty.  Instead of going to her own quarters, however,
she made a detour and wound up before the doors to another’s quarters,
then pushed the button to announce her arrival.

The doors slid open, and Kalin stood there, dressed in plain clothes and
holding a tablet. His expression was somewhat surprised.

Teser: Alora, hello. Is something the matter?

DeVeau: Not at all.

Alora held up the platter where the cake sat in all its chocolatey
splendor.

DeVeau: You didn’t come to the party, so I brought the party to you.

Kalin looked legitimately surprised.

Teser: Oh. Well. That was quite...considerate of you. You certainly
didn't have to go to the trouble on my behalf. Uh. Would you care to
come in?

DeVeau: It’s no trouble, really.

Alora glided through the doors and crossed over to the sitting area
where she placed the cake upon the coffee table.  That done, she moved
over to the replicator.

DeVeau: Three servings of Halier’s ice cream, one vanilla, two chocolate.

Immediately, the replicator complied and three bowls sat inside,
complete with spoons.  Alora picked them up, careful to balance them,
then carried those to join the cake before plopping onto the couch herself.

DeVeau: I didn’t know if you preferred vanilla or chocolate, so I got both.

Kalin's expression went from merely surprised to surprised and off
balance at Alora's procurement of the ice cream.

Teser: Ice cream too? Oh, well, that is decadent, isn't it? Uh. Which do
you recommend, then? Between the vanilla and the chocolate, that is?

DeVeau: What do you like better, vanilla or chocolate?

Teser: Well, it depends. I've had very good vanillas and very good
chocolates, but I haven't had this vanilla or this chocolate.

DeVeau: That’s not very helpful, is it?

Teser: Well you had both, so I'm asking for your opinion.

Alora just shook her head.  Instead of handing one of the bowls to Kalin
right away, she set them down.  Taking the spoon in the vanilla, she
split it between the two bowls of chocolate and handed him one.

DeVeau: There.  Now you don’t have to choose.

Teser: I suppose that works.

((End Flashback))

::She had been uncomfortable earlier on, even seemed to distance herself
from past encounters but this was different. An eerie silence came to
the usually talkative science officer in a way that almost seemed to be
physically felt. He looked at her, then to the dessert.::

Nijil: Commander DeVeau - ::nothing. Beat.:: Alora -

At the sound of his voice, Alora’s eyes snapped up to the first
officer.  Her breathing quickened and she attempted to use that
breathing tool to calm herself - but it was too late.  It was too much. 
It was too hard.  Water filled her eyes, and a tear even managed to
spill over as a sob choked its way out.

DeVeau: I...I...I’m...I’m sorry.

She managed the words as she jumped to her feet.  Without any other
explanation, Alora turned and fled, leaving the First Officer alone with
two bowls of ice cream.

::It all happened so fast. He had tried to break her of her focus - she
had seemed to pull into herself, unresponsive. After their last talk
about her health, his thoughts instantly went to concern that there was
a medical reason for her sudden vacancy. But then she snapped to,
looking at him with a mix of horror and… he couldn’t quite place the look.

The waitress came over in a flurry to ask what was wrong. Most seemed to
instantly bond with the young science officer, so their concern was
genuine. He said it was none of her business on the nicest way possible
and made his own exit after covering the bill.::

END
_____________________

Lieutenant Commander Nijil
Executive Officer
Starbase 118 Ops
USS Narendra
A239202RH0

&


Lt. Cmdr. Alora DeVeau
Science Officer
Starbase 118 Ops
M239008AD0

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