((OOC: trigger warning: there is talk concerning abortion in this sim. Continue on at your own risk.))
((Officer's Lounge, Deck 19, Deep Space 224))
Aine had spent the day avoiding public spaces. She was nervous enough to agree to meet Mel, running into him would have just made things worse. She wished she hadn't arrived early. The minutes felt like lifetimes. She wondered what Mel wanted to talk about. Her worst nightmare was that he would want to rekindle their relationship. She sipped at her water and sincerely hoped he'd be late so she'd have an excuse to leave. But no luck there, for there he was. He approached and everything felt like it slowed, save for her breathing which quickened. Walking up to the table, he handed her a single purple dahlia, her favorite. She took it and stared at it for a moment, it's many petals standing out in the dim lights of the lounge.
Martinson: May I? ::gesturing to the chair opposite her::
Aine's eyes shifted back and forth.
Sherlock: Of course.
Martinson: ::settling into the seat:: Can we...can we just start over for a moment?
Sherlock: We can try.
Martinson: Ok. Well, how are you? How are you finding your time in the fleet?
Sherlock: I'm good. Things are good. I'm ::beat:: making friends with some of my shipmates. The work can be tough, but I'm enjoying it.
Martinson: That's good. I've read a couple mission reports from the Resolution. ::laughing behind his words:: You guys' have seen some stuff.
Sherlock: You could say that. :: shrugging with her hands:: Just another day in the Fleet, right?
Aine watched as the normally overly confident man seemed jittery and nervous. His hands clasped on the table. He appeared to be trying hard to not anger Aine...again. She almost felt bad for him. She decided to show him she was going to be civil.
Sherlock: Um...what about you? You got assigned to the...Gle...
Martinson: Glenn, yeah. Still there. Nothing quite as exciting as your ship. But, we're more diplomacy focused. Mostly it's been settling small colonial disputes. So, how are...uh...how are your parents?
She thought back to when they came to visit the Academy campus in San Francisco, a long journey as far as they were concerned. Mel was a nervous wreck meeting them. Aine grinned at the memory.
Sherlock: They're good. My ma brings you up every now and then. My da, well, he's a father so he despises you.
They both laughed at the notion.
Sherlock: And your ma?
Martinson: She's good. Still in the fleet. I think she's planning on retiring in a few years. She hasn't brought you up since...
Sherlock: Gee, thanks.
Martinson: No, that's not what I meant. She loved you. She just, for me, doesn't bring it up.
Aine saw his nervousness rise. She flashed him a sly grin to let him know she was only joking.
Sherlock: So, is this what you wanted? Just to chat and catch up?
Martinson: Yes. Well, I wanted to say something. I know what I did was horrible. I'm not denying that. And I am sorry. I was young, career driven...stupid. And I am really sorry. I still care about you. And, I want you to know that.
Aine swallowed hard. oO Maybe he does really feel bad? Oo Truth was, she never could fall out of love with him despite the pain. She nodded her head slightly to acknowledge his apology.
Sherlock: Thank you.
Mel took in a deep breath of relief.
Sherlock: But, please know, it hurt. And it still hurts. This doesn't excuse you leaving.
Martinson: No, I know that. I get that. Totally. I screwed up. I know.
Sherlock: Good. Ok.
Martinson: Ok. So, I know this is a big ask, but can I meet them?
Aine's eyes narrowed as she thought about the question. She was more confused by it than anything.
Sherlock: Meet who?
Martinson: The baby. I mean, they're not a baby anymore, it's been three years and...
Sherlock: Is this a sick joke?
Mel looked like a man who'd made a mistake and Aine wondered now how much he really knew. How much he'd really looked into the situation after he'd left.
Martinson: I know I haven't been there. But maybe that can change?
Aine couldn't believe what was happening, she felt sick to her stomach.
Sherlock: You don't even know, do you?
Martinson: Know what?
Sherlock: There is no baby.
Mel looked shocked as he clasped his hands together in front of his mouth.
Sherlock: After you left, just like you, I chose my career. I couldn't have a kid.
Martinson: Aine, I'm so sorry.
Sherlock: All of that nearly ended my chance in Starfleet, ya know? Even after I had the pregnancy terminated, it wasn't easy. I nearly failed my next year. Nothing was easy.
She could feel the heat building in her cheeks and ears. It was bad enough he showed up, and now this, the ultimate painful reminder. Mel looked defeated sitting across from her. She could tell he was in shock and had never even considered that she'd go that route.
Martinson: I don't know what to say.
Sherlock: You don't have to say anything. Clearly you're full of it. You just showed how much you really care. You should just walk away, right now. Like you do.
Aine looked around with her eyes, biting her lower lip seeing that all the other officers present were now looking at them. The heat of anger in her face was now replaced by embarrassment.
Martinson: Can we ju...
Sherlock: ::gritting her teeth and staring angrily:: Leave. Now.
Martinson: ::standing:: Ok. I'll go.
Mel looked like he was about to say something else. A brief pause before he turned and walked away.
As he moved out of ear shot, Aine let out a breath she was holding, but the weight in her chest felt like it would cave it in. She breathed heavily as she held back tears.
to be continued
"special" appearance by Lt. Melvin Hollis Martinson
Lieutenant Junior Grade Aine Sherlock