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Facing Forward (A Glimpse of the Past II)

Posted on Wed Jan 3rd, 2018 @ 3:19am by Ensign Vecon Fick & Lieutenant K'Laus & Lieutenant Kalin 'Shae' Brennan PhD & Lieutenant JG Cailus Griffin

Mission: Into The Wild
Timeline: Lieutenant K'Laus' Birthday

ON:

Ensign Vecon Fick was running down the hallway pretty much full tilt toward Cargo Bay Two. He was late for an appointment with the industrial replicator. He had a very limited amount of time with it and he had been late getting off his shift. He nearly flattened one of the crew chiefs as he came bowling around the corner into the double doors of the cargo bay. "SORRY!" He yelled over his shoulder.

He skidded to a stop in front of the giant replicator and grinned hopefully at its operator. Twenty minutes later he walked out of the cargo bay with two Klingon Baldrics. He found he couldn't make up his mind. One was a dark, brushed, gunmetal grey and the other was burnished copper. Maybe Shae would have a better idea of which one would work. He was nervous and he also didn't want K'Laus to catch on. There had already been several close calls.

A day earlier...

Fick had forgotten to close out his computer station before K'Laus came over one evening. There was a drink that he had been trying to make for dinner, but the alcohol could only sit open for a certain amount of time. Fick had jumped up to pour the drink when the Klingon had let himself in. Unfortunately, the computer terminal was also in the living/dining/entry area. So as Fick poured the drinks, K'Laus got a chance to look at the wide variety of Klingon baldric designs on his screen.

The Klingon was not an entirely nosey individual and often kept to himself. He usually respected privacy, but when he noticed the screen had text that was Klingon, it intrigued him to see what the helmsmen was reading. Klingon love poetry? wondered K'Laus, but upon further inspection he found the helmsmen had been researching Baldric's. Risians thought K'Laus shaking his head. Probably thinks these are for bondage he thought as he grunted and walked away from the computer station.

Present...

Fick wasn't sure if he should ring Shae's bell or knock. He'd found out where her quarters were from the crew manifest. What if she wasn't home? He couldn't take the baldrics back to his own quarters, there was too much risk that K'Laus might see them. He stood in front of her door for at least ten minutes debating.

In the midst of Fick’s procrastination in the corridor, Cailus approached. He had clearly just been working out, wearing light pants and a grey vest, and the Security Chief’s skin was glistening with the sweat of what had clearly been a thorough exercise regimen. Cailus eyed Fick with an undecipherable expression, plainly wondering what the helmsman was doing outside Cailus and Shae’s quarters with a pair of baldrics.

“Ensign,” Cailus said in deep voice, “can I help you?”

Fick spun around and quickly tucked the baldrics behind his back. "Oh!" He started to blush, the color rising from his chest to his cheeks to his ears. "Lieutenant... sorry... I just... Shae said... she would help me with a patch... for... for the baldric..." he stammered, embarrassed. He looked up at the Security Chief, hopefully. "See it's gonna be K'Laus' birthday... and I wanted to make him a baldric... but I couldn't figure out what house he was from so I had to make up my own house thingy..." he rambled. "I told Shae I would bring her the baldric but I couldn't decide on the color so I had to bring two of them cause she's going to help me with the house patch and knows more about color then I do..." he said in one breath.

“Breathe, Ensign,” Cailus advised mildly, crossing his muscled arms. “I doubt your boyfriend will appreciate your asphyxiation as a birthday present. Now, did you try pressing the chime?”

Fick's mouth fell open, but he didn't seem to be able to make words come out. He looked at the chime and then back up at the taller officer. He shook his head. "I got nervous. Which is funny cause, like, I never get nervous. So it's kind of a weird feeling for me. I just really want this to work out and so far it's worked out but I'm so afraid something's gonna go wrong now." He fidgeted, shuffling the baldrics to one hand and looked over at the buzzer again.

A lengthy silence followed, and Cailus raised his eyebrow in a very Vulcan way. Then, utterly deadpan, he reached around Fick and tapped the chime.

Fick jumped a little when Cailus reached forward to tap the chime then blushed all over again. "Thanks..." he whispered.

A moment later, the door opened to reveal Shae with little Aoife sitting on her hip. Shae smiled when she saw Fick, but then there was confusion in her eyes when she saw Cailus. "Cailus, did your access codes not work?" she asked. Aoife leaned forward, practically spilling out of Shae's arms to get to Cailus, but Shae held tight to her. "No no, little one, he needs a shower first," Shae scolded softly, then stepped aside to let Fick and Cailus in. "Hello, Fick, please come in."

Fick was still blushing. "Hi!" he said brightly, staring at Aoife. "Is... is this your daughter?" He started to make funny faces at Aoife. They were admittedly pretty funny and he was trying very hard not to make any of them scary. "The Security Chief was helping me with my buzzer anxiety."

"How thoughtful!" Shae said with a bright smile while Aoife, who wore the new dress with the little fish swimming at the hem, smiled at the funny faces Fick made. Shae showed Fick in and set Aoife down on the floor to play with her toys. "I see you couldn't decide which baldric to pick," she said playfully as she went to the desk to get the patch she started; it was just an outline on a scrap of heavy cloth, but it would be good to make sure it was the right size before getting too far into it.

Seeing that Fick was in Shae’s capable hands, Cailus finally allowed his grin to emerge when Fick’s back was turned. Shaking his head in silent amusement, he made his way to the bathroom to leave Shae and Fick to their fashion fun. He’d known why Fick had been there immediately, of course, but really, how could he resist teasing the kid?

Fick held up the two baldrics. "So... these are supposed to fit him. I put his measurements in and everything and I couldn't decide on a color. I like both of these so much and you said that thing about color... so I got all anxious about which one I should pick and I still couldn't pick so I just replicated both of them. I had to get time with the industrial replicator... but here they are. They're freakin heavy..." he chuckled.

"They look heavy; you can set them on the couch," Shae replied, then found what she was looking for and moved to join Fick at the couch. One baldric was a warm burnished copper while the other was a strong gunmetal grey. "They're both very nice," Shae said approvingly, "but I think you should go with the copper; it's warm and I think the colors from the patch will work better with it. Now I just need to do my thing!" Then she pulled the scrap of cloth that would become the patch and folded the edges under to get a sense of the size and how it would sit on the baldric. "I think I'm going to have to shrink that down, a bit" she said, then went to the replicator to reduce its size.

Fick set them down on the couch and then nodded. "I... I really like the copper one. I think he'll like the copper one more. He has other stuff that's copper colored. Is... is that it?" He bounced along behind Shae all the way to the replicator. "Thank you so much for helping me with this... I guess it's kinda crazy that I want to do this, but it's the best thing I could come up with... although I think I might need to get him something else too in case he doesn't like, but then I can't settle on that either. I told my mother that I have a Klingon boyfriend..." he sort of let that last line fall.

"Yes, this is it," Shae replied, showing him the outline on the fabric. "Just needs to be a wee bit smaller," she said as she set it in the replicator, entered a few variables into the replicator and then set it to run. The replicator hummed and shimmered and when it was done the patch was a little smaller. Shae took it back to the couch and set it on the copper baldric. "Much better," she said approvingly, then pulled out a card with an array of colorful threads and laying it out so she could see how the colors would work with the color of the baldric. "I think he'll like your gift; if nothing else, he should appreciate the meaning of the gesture and the effort you put into it for him," Shae said as she thumbed through color swatches.

Fick got right up next to Shae to peer at what she was doing. He bounced a little in excitement. "It's wonderful already! I'm so excited! My mom got all gushy and wanted me to bring him home and everything. I told her it was a little early maybe to like show him my full family crazy... then she went on about how I might be too young to commit myself to a boyfriend and how I should sleep around more... it was really annoying. Sometimes I'd rather talk to my father... at least most of the time he's cryptic enough that I don't get what he's saying to me. Do all those little bits of string show you all the colors?"

"Right, these are the colors I picked out to use in the patch; I'm just making sure they don't clash with the color of the baldric," Shae said with a nod. And it all looked good, she was ready to get started! "As for your family, you could be like me and bring your boyfriend home to see your family before you even start dating," she admitted with a hint of a blush. "I don't think I'll ever be able to look at the kitchen table again without blushing..." she said absent-mindedly, then her blush deepened when she realized what she had said. "Please forget I ever said that..."

Fick snorted. "Why? I'm from Risa, honey... born and raised. I've heard it all... and in most cases I've done it as well." He chuckled and snorted again. He bumped against her gently. "Hey, I like a good sturdy table... mostly cause I'm short and it helps with that."

If he thought his words would help ease her mind, he succeeded only in deepening her lovely blush, but she did at least smile. "Are you pleased with the colors?" Shae asked with a bit of a squeak in her voice, still a little embarrassed.

Fick was easily distracted from his previous topic and leaned closer to her to peer at the colors. "They're perfect!" He leaned back again and bounced a little in his seat, clapping his hands for a minute, like an excited child. "I'm so excited! Thank you so much! I just... I just hope he likes it. I've searched his quarters... and he definitely doesn't have one." Fick seemed to have no problems admitting that he had rifled through his boyfriend's belongings. He was grinning broadly. "Is there anything I can do to help? As I'm sure you noticed, I don't know anything about sewing...."

"Well, you could probably take the other baldric back to the replicator to be recycled, but as for help I think I had better do this on my own especially if you want it done on time, but if you're really interested in learning, I can make time later to teach you," Shae said playfully. "Maybe once you feel confident in your abilities, and after you learn more about his heritage, you can make more things to add to his baldric," she suggested.

Fick stared at Shae for a moment with his mouth open, unsure of how to reply. "You'd really be willing to teach me?" he asked with amazement. "I'd love to learn. I like to learn stuff. You never know what might come in handy... but like... no hurry on that. I know everyone is busy all the time. Just... if you find yourself with some time, I'd love to learn. My Aunt on Risa can sew really well, but she's got a machine. Like two or three machines actually... cause they all do different stuff." He chuckled. "I always wanted to learn, but she never seemed really interested in teaching me."

"Machines are nice, and if I was going to make a dress from scratch, I would use one, but for this kind of thing, I prefer to do it by hand; a machine is definitely faster, but there's simply too many details you lose out on with a machine." Shae said as she collected her swatches. "And I would love to teach you once I'm done with this project; far too often we forget about traditional skills in favor of the convenience of the replicator, so it's nice to know that people are still interested in learning these skills. But for now, why don't you take the extra baldric down for recycling, I'll hold on to the copper one so you don't have to worry about K'Laus accidentally finding it, and I'll keep you updated on my progress."

Fick nodded enthusiastically, still grinning broadly. "Thank you again! I'd love to learn and yeah... I always think of it that way too. What if all of this disappeared tomorrow. I mean we could get stuck on a planet with no technology... you never know. It's good to know stuff." He picked up the other baldric and headed for the door. "Thank you so much! Just lemme know what I can do for you in return." He waved at Aoife. "Bye! Thank you!" He practically bounced out the door.

Shae giggled softly, then picked up the heavy baldric and took it to the bedroom where she could store it until it was needed.

Moments later Cailus emerged from the bathroom, clad in only a towel with his hair still damp. Noticing Shae putting the baldric into a drawer, he snuck a peek over her shoulder at the copper baldric, smiling.

“Nice kid,” he commented as he laid out fresh clothes on the bed.

"And so cute!" Shae said with a smile. "He was just so sweet and I couldn't say no to that adorable face!"

Cailus chuckled. “I know. He’s just so young, it’d be like kicking a puppy.”

"And to think, some people say you have no heart at all," Shae said with a giggle, then she left him to get dressed, returning to the main room to get started on this patch.

To be continued...

 

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