((Starbase 118 Ops - Commercial Sector))
The woman was nervous, and Alora understood that some people didn’t do well with crowds. After a moment, she offered a hand to Ariana.
DeVeau: I’ll be right there with you, right? We’ll swim the stream together, kay?
Ariana smiled and nodded, taking her hand.
Amaase: Thank you.
Ariana took the lead as she liked to have a clear view of where she could dodge in and out of. With Alora close by her side, they pushed their way through the crowds without bumping into anyone. As they got to the other side Ariana let out a sigh of relief.
Amaase: Phew. ::She wiped the back of her head with her free hand:: I always work myself up far too much. ::She noticed she still had hold of Alora’s hand tightly, but not uncomfortably tight:: Oh sorry. ::She blushed slightly and let go::
DeVeau: Why are you sorry, silly? Nothing to be sorry for.
Ariana smiled bashfully not looking at Alora.
Amaase: So.. ::she cleared her throat:: A bite to eat?
DeVeau: Yes, food. Food is definitely good. What do you feel like? There were so many restaurants, and also an insane amount of vendors, that anything anyone could want, they most likely could fine. Alora peered down the vast lane, both sides of which were flanked with so many options.
Amaase: For a picnic we definitely need sausage rolls. ::you could hear the joy as she spoke:: Oh, and crisp.
DeVeau: Excellent choice. We’ll have to walk a bit, but that’s all right. Come on!
Alora made sure not to leave the woman behind, but she set out at a decent clip. Traffic was still heavy, but not quite as bad as the main thoroughfare as they had left behind. It was later in the day for lunch, so that helped somewhat. Weaving her way to the side, she allowed a moment for Ariana to catch her breath, then headed straight down the row.
DeVeau: I know I saw some place that sold what you were looking for….ah! Down there!
She pointed to a bright red canopy, then continued down the path. Finally, they came to a stop in front of a vendor who carried a small menu of several types of sausages in buns, meat on a stick, fries (or chips if her companion preferred) as well as chips (or crisps). The thought of the different names made Alora smile, grateful she knew what Ariana had meant. They waited in line, only one person before them, then stepped up as the previous patron had been satisfied with his food. A tall, thin man grinned at them from behind the counter above which the canopy hovered, he nodded politely, then queried -
Vendor: What’s yer pleasure?
Alora glanced at Ariana and motioned for her to make the first order.
Amaase: A sausage roll and two packets of ready salted crisps please. ::She paid the vendor and smiled at him:: Thank you.
Vendor: Comin’ right up. And you, miss?
DeVeau: Beer kielbasa in a blanket, sauteed onions, spicy mustard and an order of fries, wrapped up tight, please. We’ve got a bit of a walk to get where we’re going.
Vendor: You got it! Have it out for ya both in a jiffy.
Alora’s fingerprint was taken to deduct the credits and the man’s assistants had already set to work on the order. Stepping aside so the next person could go, Alora admitted to her new friend.
DeVeau: I do love a good kielbasa.
oO What's a kielbasa? I'll have to look that up later. Oo
Ariana smiled, she would have to try it at some point, if it was something that she would eat.
They were passed two parcels lickety split and Alora cradled hers, then motioned back the way they came.
Ariana took hers and slipped the packet of crisps into two separate pockets of her jeans. Holding the sausage roll by the corner of it's wrappings she started to follow Alora.
DeVeau: The gardens await!
Weaving back through the crowd, Alora kept a close eye on her companion to make sure she wasn’t overwhelmed. She paused once, shifting off to the side and allowing a break from the schools of fish that swam the tides of Ops’ seas. Once more, she clasped Ariana’s hand when they had to dodge through the thickest portion, then helped her navigate through to the ege of the gardens where a small lake shimmered in the manufactured sun. Motioning toward the west side where there were a couple of trees and gentle grassy slope, Alora aimed for the spot, then plopped down.
Ariana was thankful that Alora kept by her side and offered her hand when she needed it the most. She relaxed more on this trip through, knowing she was in good hands. She let Alora lead them to a nice spot under some trees. The shade of the trees washed over Ariana, it felt nice.
DeVeau: We made it!
She beamed, motioning for her new companion to sit with her.
Ariana took her crisps out of her pocket sat beside her as she spoke. She placed them on the ground.
DeVeau: Ops can be really overwhelming, but give it some time.
Amaase: I'll get used to it. ::She pulled at the collar of her top:: Damn it!! ::She got a little irritated:: I need to take this jumper off.
Alora had ust been about to unwrap her sausage on a bun when Ariana made the declaration. Ah, yes, layers. Sometimes, it was good to have them, especially if you were cold natured, but they’d been exerting themselves, so perhaps she was getting hot .
Ariana looked at her hopefully.
Amaase: Would you mind holding my vest top at the bottom whilst I take this off please?
DeVeau: Oh sure.
Setting her food aside, Alora complied with Ariana’s request.
Amaase: Great, thank you. ::She rolled the jumper up under the vest tops then shimmied her arms out of the jumper poking her arms back through the vest tops she pulled the jumper off over her head:: Thank you.
DeVeau: No problem. Feel better?
Ariana sighed with relief.
Amaase: Much better.
DeVeau: Good! Let’s eat, I’m starved!
The food had been packaged well and the meat was still steaming when Alora unwrapped and took a bite. Turning her gaze out to the lake, she admired how natural it seemed despite the fact that it was man made and set in such an odd environment.
Ariana sat back down and pulled the sausage roll out of its wrappings a little bit so she could take a bite.
DeVeau: So, Ariana, tell me about yourself. Where are you from? What sort of things do you like other than water? For instance, plants. Do you like plants?
Ariana finished her mouthful before she answered.
Amaase: I was born and raised on Earth. Drawing is good. I love plants. I've tried to grow some myself, but succulents are hard to grow. At least some types.
Alora didn’t find them difficult, but she had an advantage over most people - that was one of her fields, so of course they would be easy for her. There were, of course, some plants that were even less difficult to cultivate, but for the moment, she moved on to a different topic.
DeVeau: What sort of things do you like to draw and paint? Do you have a specialty?
Ariana lowered her arm holding the sausage roll in as she was about to take a bite.
Amaase: Anything really. Some things from my brain, others from a picture. No speciality.
DeVeau: Oh! I haven’t asked what you do! You just graduated, but I don’t even know what position you hold.
Amaase: I'm a counselor. ::She smiled::
DeVeau: Lovely, another counselor! Do you know Ashley? He’s also a counselor.
A rather infuriating one. Alora elected not to share some of Ashley’s techniques with the newcomer. If she did, Ariana might try to employ them. Not that she was likely to see Ariana, for Ashley had made certain Alora was steadfastly on his own docket.
Amaase: I've met him, at the ball. He was very friendly and welcoming. ::She quickly took a bite of her sausage roll::
Ariana looked around the gardens as she chewed her mouthful. As she finished she looked at Alora.
Amaase: So, what is it that you do? I know you mentioned being a botanist and zoologist. So is that something you do here or?
DeVeau: Oh yes. Most of what I do has to do with research. I’m actually the Assistant Chief Science officer.
As Alora spoke Ariana took this chance to eat another bite. She listened intently to what Alora had to say. She smiled at her.
Amaase: That sounds really interesting. So other than plants, what piques your interest?
Again as Alora answered Ariana tucked into her sausage roll. Crumbs were littering her top and lap. She was enjoying the taste of the sausage meat and pastry, she would definitely go back there in future. She didn't always enjoy the meat in a sausage roll, but this had to be one of the tastiest she had tried.
DeVeau: Animals. Music. Martial arts. Actually, all sorts of stuff, but those are the things I engage in regularly. I used to perform on stage in shows, but haven’t had much opportunity for that sort of thing since entering Starfleet, but that’s okay.
Ariana brushed some of the crumbs off her chest, a pointless exercise as she hadn't finished yet.
Amaase: Hey, random question, sorry to go off topic.. but can you play cards? I've not had a good game in years. I'd even play pairs at this point. Playing solo games isn't as fun. ::She blushed::
DeVeau: Random and off topic questions can often be the most interesting. To answer, yes, I do, I know a few different games - and I love board games in general.
Like Ariana, Alora had been working on her own meal, taking bites in between the conversation, and admiring the peaceful scenery that surrounded them, an oasis among a noisy, restless district. Turning her gaze back to Ariana, she smiled.
DeVeau: Tell you what, why don’t we meet tomorrow evening. If you don’t mind replicated food, you can head over to my quarters and we can play some games together. Ariana beamed.
Amaase: I’d love to. ::she said excitedly:: I was actually going to ask you, dependent on the answer.
DeVeau: Awesome! Sounds like a plan!
Amaase: Indeed it does. ::she had a big grin on her face::
Ensign Ariana Amaase
Lt. Cmdr. Alora DeVeau
Starbase 118 Ops