OOC: Takes place after Lael’s conversation with Galven in the Officer’s Mess.
(( Holodeck 1, USS Veritas ))
(( Ravenwood Ranch))
::Lael sighed as the cool air hit her in the face, Bella picking up speed as they moved toward the grove of trees ahead at a hard gallop. She spotted the hedge fence ahead and patted the horse’s neck briefly as she leaned forward, preparing for the jump. She tapped her heels against the horse’s abdomen, her grip tightening on the reins as they drew closer and closer.::
::Her heart pounded in her chest as the horse’s front hooves left the ground followed in quick succession by her rear hooves. For the few moments that they were suspended in the air, she felt as though she were truly flying. A loud “clop” echoed in the air as Bella’s hooves found the ground on the other side, the horse slowing as Lael pulled back on the reins, leaning slightly backward as her thighs tightened around the horse’s middle.::
::As she slowed down, a figure appeared at the top of the next ridge. A familiar male with pointed ears and gold starfleet uniform - Evan Delano. He was peering around the simulation, and when his eyes found Lael on horseback, he waved to her to make sure she saw him. As she approached, he offered a sympathetic smile. ::
Delano: Good morning, Commander.
:: Evan tended to use formal address while on duty, even with those he considered friends. ::
::Her brow furrowed as she steadied the horse and climbed down, but her features relaxed and she arched an eyebrow at the formal address.::
Rosek: Evan, please. We’re off duty and we don’t have the barrier of rank anymore. Call me by my first name.
:: The half-Vulcan nodded in response to the request. ::
Delano: Of course, Lael.
Rosek: ::pulls off the riding gloves:: So what brings you here?
Delano: I’m afraid I actually am on duty. Its 1130 hours.
Rosek: ::smiles wanly:: That sounds like you. You work too much if you ask me.
:: Two years ago, Evan had balked at the idea of such a regimented life. Now, he’d gotten so used to the routines of his job on Veritas that it was sometimes difficult to remember to stop being “Commander Delano” once in a while. ::
Delano: You’re probably right. Unfortunately, without a larger operations staff, there’s always something urgent that needs to be done and I’m usually the one who needs to do it. I’m sure you can relate.
Rosek: ::smirks:: This is what happens when I’m not pulling double and triple shifts in Engineering, I guess.
Delano: Anyway, this holodeck’s scheduled to begin a public simulation in thirty minutes. I’ve got to run some maintenance and safety checks before then.
:: The holodecks were often under heavy demand on the Veritas. And even more so after that last mission, which had challenged much of the crew in multiple ways. The enlisted and junior officers had been kept out of the loop on the classified Omega Directive, while the senior staff had been forced to make some ethically questionable choices to follow orders. On top of all that, they’d had to face the Borg. ::
Rosek: ::smiles and shakes her head:: If you insist. ::pauses:: Computer, end program.
::The wide open spaces of her uncle’s farm were instantly replaced by the black and yellow gridlines of the holodeck. She turned to Evan.::
Rosek: I could lend a hand. You’d likely get it done more quickly.
Delano: I’d be happy for the help, but don’t let me interfere with your off duty time.
Rosek: ::shrugs:: I’m here and I don’t really have anything else to do. Since the hearing, Maddy’s with her biological father and Jon took an LOA to stay on Earth and visit with his parents. So I’m living the single life until he gets back. Work, eat, sleep and work some more.
:: Evan rubbed the back of his neck. ::
Delano: Well, work can be a good distraction from those things. Trust me, I know.
Rosek: ::grimaces:: From years of experience, so do I.
:: Evan made his way to the access panel near the entrance to the holodeck and crouched down, tricorder in hand. The first thing he usually did was perform a manual check of the isolinear circuits that ensured the holodeck safeties didn’t malfunction. ::
Delano: How are you adjusting?
::She paused at the question. She assumed he meant to Maddy being gone, though it could easily have been referring to Jon being absent too. A lot had happened since she and Evan had last talked and he really didn’t know the half of it.::
Rosek: ::pauses:: Have you ever had a psionic connection with someone and been able to share dreams--visions--over long distances?
::The mind meld he’d performed on Harrison Ross had had some long term consequences that might be comparable, but that was something he still didn’t fully understand, even after he’d finally gained control of his latent Vulcan abilities.::
Delano: I take it that’s what you’ve been dealing with?
Lieutenant Commander Evan Delano
Operations Officer/Second Officer
Lieutenant Commander Lael Rosek, Eng.D.
Acting Chief Engineering Officer
USS Veritas NCC-95035