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JL | Com Ivanova, Lt. Shran | "To The Future"

Posted on 241808.24 @ 13:07 by Commodore Rochelle Ivanova & Lieutenant Anaxar Shran

Mission: Lacuna

They were back on the Vindicator and had settled in quite nicely. It was odd, Anaxar reflected, how everything was the same here. It felt like nothing had happened, like Si'a had not been suddenly spirited away, how Archer and Stacker and he had not gone after her and Valeese and got them back.

Now Si'a was resting in her quarters – between the pregnancy and her recent ordeal she needed plenty of rest – and he had resumed his wanderings through the ship. He needed it, he needed these moments of solitude, if only to clear his mind.

This time, his wandering had taken him to the observation lounge. The stars were still invisible to his mechanical eyes, but it no longer bothered him like it had done before. There was only one star for him now (and a much smaller one, as yet unknown) and she was safe.

He sat down in one of the chairs near the large window and reveled in the silence.

It wasn't longer before it was broken by a gentle, feminine cough used to announce her presence and clear the air. Chances were that he'd known she was there long before she'd even come through the doors. The Andorian's senses were just that finely tuned - and a marvel if there ever was one. Rochelle smiled gently when she recognized him there, pleased to see that he seemed no worse for wear after such a sordid ordeal. "Welcome home." She offered, coming along side and choosing to remain on her own two feet. It was after hours, no one else to contend with, and even out of uniform it remained a perfect place and time to have a chat like the one that was to conspire between the two of them. "I heard that Si'a and baby are no worse for wear, always good to hear. What about you, though? How are you holding up?"

Anaxar had heard her approach (as usual, he had switched off his artificial sight during these quiet moments, both to avoid straining the interface too much and bringing on a migraine and because he didn't want to rely on it too much), but waited to see if she wanted to speak to him or if she came here desiring solitude. He smiled as she began to speak.

"They're physically fine. I'm not sure what the psychological impact will be on Si'a – we were just back from one situation when this happened, so yeah, I'm worried where that's concerned." He twitched his antennae in the Andorian version of a shrug. "Me, I'm just glad they're back here, safe and sound."

Leaning her head one side and then the other, the Commodore stretched her neck in an attempt to relieve the tension that had set in across that particular region of her body. If anyone could and would understand psychological trauma post traumatizing incidents, it was very likely going to be her, "I think we fail to give Si'a credit where it's due because she seems so tiny and frail," She offered with a dainty shrug of her own, "We keep forgetting that she's a member of an extremely advanced and extremely strong race of beings..." And then her attentions turned from the stars to focus on the blue skin and dark carbon of the man's face, "And she has you. She's going to be ok and has been told to take as much time off as she feels she needs. I expect you to hold her to that both as her significant other and her department head."

"Oh yes, I most certainly will." He smiled again. "Though I'm sure she'll ask to be put on light duty after a few days. Sitting still is not exactly Si'a's thing." He fixed his antennae in her direction. "And how are you these days? You sound tired." More tired than the situation itself warranted, he thought. Then again, he had been out of the loop of what happened on the ship while he'd been gone.

"Light duty, work from the comfort of home. Whatever you two figure out is fine with me, just send a note up so we have an idea of what's going on." At least he was happy enough to smile. Out of everything, she'd been worried that he'd return a bit broken in some regard, after all the last she'd seen of him he was a fine mix of depression and anger that was boiling down to what was easy to see as an impending cascade failure. This was a changed man, more relaxed, and a welcomed sight. So far, so good. Everything was as it should be. "Me? I'm alright. Been a long last few days and I've had a bunch on my mind." Lots of things, really - but none of them things that should trouble him now that he had his family home and a department to get back to running.

"I can imagine the last period has been strenuous for you as well." At least he had been able to get out and do something to get Si'a back safe. He doubted he would have been able to handle things well if he hadn't been allowed to do so. There was something else he did need to ask, though, and now that Rochelle was here, he had the perfect person to ask it to. "Did anything happen here on the ship lately that I should be aware of?"

"No, not that I can think of." Rochelle replied, furrowing her brow, "I mean... It's been relatively quiet once you get past the kidnappings and the explosion on the station. Station's XO saw someone that apparently looked a lot like me." She shrugged, "Other than that? Nothing..." While she went through the rolodex of happenings buried and entrenched in her mind, only one other thing worth sharing came to mind if only because of her concern for health and welfare as it pertained to her crew and friends, "Oh! We did get a new counselor, though... Might not be a bad thing to think about heading down to see her with Si'a? No shame."

"I'll certainly suggest that." Anaxar himself tended to avoid counselors like the plague, but that was only because, after his accident, he'd been seen by counselor after counselor. They all wanted to talk and talk incessantly about the accident, his injuries, the loss of his eyes, his ship, his friends, all that dredge. All offering advice which was probably useful in standard situations, but none of them had ever been in a situation remotely like his and their words and advice were as hollow as a drum. They had been a complete waste of energy, and in those days he had preciously little of that to begin with. He smirked when he remembered his obligatory visit with the last counselor on this ship – he'd had a massive migraine that day, which had either totally escaped the man's notice or he simply hadn't given a damn. Suffice to say, that particular appointment hadn't gone well either.

But he was certain counselors could do a lot of good in certain situations, and suggesting to Si'a that she'd visit the new one could do no harm. If it worked, good. If not, they'd find a way. He knew they would.

The redhead nodded in silence before realizing she had no way of knowing if the Andorian's interface was active or not. Inside, she blushed and chided herself for being insensitive. "Perfect. If she isn't game, then she isn't game and we'll do what we can not to force the issue. I'm not especially fond of witchdoctors myself." Even Tristan, she thought. The poor son of a bitch had often gone head to head with her over the time they'd spent together - he being ever gentle and patient even in his frustration, she being bullheaded and difficult even at the best of times. It was a toxic mix that often resulted in both of them being stymied, but somehow coming away from each interaction for the better of it. One of life's great mysteries.

"Anyway..." Her tongue ran over her lips, "I really wanted to say congratulations and let you know that should you need advice, I'm happy to offer it. Babies are wonderful things and having new life aboard this ship is a very beautiful thing."

Actually, Anaxar had never given children or babies much thought before he learned he was about to become a parent. He had been immersed in Starfleet from a very young age, the only sibling he had was an older sister and as far as he knew, she never had any children herself. Or maybe she had, these days. He hadn't been in touch for quite awhile. "Yes, about that…" he said solemnly. "What's it like, being a parent?"

A small whisper of a smile, soft and sincere, soothed the features of her face as she heard the question and formulated an answer. It didn't take much time at all - motherhood was her finest accomplishment even if it had come as a bit of a shock and hadn't been on anyone's 5 year plan. The parallels were there, for sure, and she knew that honesty was going to be the best policy to take. "Well..." Rochelle started, "It's sleepless nights and bizarre worries. It's frustration and tears and then it's boundless laughter and pride and moments you'll never forget. You're raising the future and setting them up for success knowing that they're your one shot at changing the future for better." A hand raised, fingers trapping a wayward lock of hair that had fallen free and in one well practiced sweep, she placed it back behind her ear, "In short, it's the most amazing thing anyone could ever do. There's no manual, only instinct. La..." She paused, realizing the name and anecdote that had taken roost against her tongue, "Captain Neyes has almost ten centuries of experience and life shared with him through his symbiont. That didn't even prepare him for Javaan. Every child is different, and they're all a true marvel."

He couldn't see the smile, of course – even if he had his eyes activated he wouldn't have been able to perceive it – but it was clear in her voice and in the way she held herself. A minute relaxation, a moment of introspection before she answered. Anaxar found himself smiling in return. That expression, once so alien on his scarred face, gradually appeared more often now that he and Si'a were together again.

"So," he said with a minute shrug, "from what I hear it's best to take it one day at a time. Just like anything else, I take it."

"That's exactly right. Dream big, make plans for the future, but be flexible and let them walk their own path and write their own story." Rochelle's hand found his shoulder as she spoke, giving it a gentle squeeze, "It's an amazing part of life and I have no doubt that you'll figure it out and be a great father."

"I have no idea about that," he replied, "but I'll certainly do my best."


Commodore Rochelle Ivanova
Commanding Officer


Lieutenant Anaxar Shran
Chief Science Officer


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