SIM:Ens Nickels: The Power of Love

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(( Wedding Grounds, Village, Ba'ku Homeworld ))

:: Nickels Luciano had the world on a string, and the string around his finger. The sun was shining, the breeze was cool, he was surrounded by beautiful immortal gals who had probably learned a neat boudoir trick or two in the past few hundred years, and he was dressed so spiffy in radiant white and shining gold that he could've gotten a job as Heaven's doorman to class up the joint once St. Peter retired. He shot his cuffs, walking with the new Security ensign, Skar "Rocko" Dohan and his old pal Inarr "The Suitcase" Rogg, each resplendent in their own right with Rocko in his native Brikar garb and Suitcase looking natty in his Starfleet dress whites. Most of the senior staff of the Discovery seemed to be here, and quite a percentage of the Ba'ku population, all turned out to see the hero of their little isolated world finally tie the knot with the love of his life, the beautiful first officer, a lady who had always struck Nickels as delicately beautiful and somewhat terrifying at the same time. ::

oO Fights like a demon an' fills a dress Telulah Bankhead. It's a coin toss as ta which caught the cap'n first. Oo

:: The wedding was everything Nickels would've expected a wedding to be - after a bit of careful reasearch into what a wedding should actually be like. There were key differences between how traditional followers of the Book on Sigma Iotia got hitched and how a few thousand more civilized cultures on record handled things. For instance, there almost certainly wouldn't be the traditional shooting of wine glasses off the heads of the wedding party, or the highly ceremonial post-kiss brawl. This was probably going to be a more stately, classical romantic affair. Everyone looked classy, no one seemed to be packing heat, and the crew of the Discovery had enough chutzpah between them to ensure that if even the Borg themselves decided to show up to assimilate the wedding party and integrate the technological advances of floral centerpieces and hors d'oeuvres, they would be dismantled like a Coupe de Ville left parked on Krako Street back in Old Chicago. ::

GHYURN: I am Ghyurn.

:: There was nothing quite like the sudden arrival of a well-dressed Godzilla to draw you up short. Nickels' wandering eyes were snapped back to attention, and he managed to bite back a comical yelp of surprise, instead shooting his white satin cuffs, letting the Starfleet cufflinks gleam in the sun as the earnest Ensign Dohan squared up to greet the Commander. Nicky glanced from one titan to the other. This close to the oversized officers he could practically feel their gravitational pull. ::

DOHAN: Good-day sir, I am Skar Dohan and I'll be joining this ships legendary crew on Security and look forward....Ah sorry, I'm coming off stuck up. Name's Skar chum and it's a pleasure to meet you.

:: It must've been a quirk of the universal translator, but Nickels would've sworn on a stack of comic books that Dohan's gravelly voice had a Brooklyn accent. ::

GHYURN: Your people are known to ussss. Your ssstrength is legendary.

DOHAN: Heh. I won't toot my race's horn too much but yeah we've been known tohaul a few tons in our time...It's a matter of discipline. According to the teachings of Trarnok, true strength comes from the roots in the ground not the crags on the surface. I'm just trying to keep up appearances for the wedding and make sure I stay alert.

oO Seriously, I gotta check the algorithms on the Brikar dialect. This guy sounds like he's from Yancy Street. Oo

GHYURN: I have sssscanned the entire area and have detected no hostiles. I believe our ssservices will be unneeded.

NICKELS: That'll be a nice change of pace. An' I won't feel underdressed not bringin' my tommy gun, f'r once.

DOHAN: Well I'm relieved to hear that, I mean I'll still be glad to be on guard but it's nice to not worry about some unknown force of terror wrecking up the cocktails and snacks afterwards. I really wanna try some of these "finger-sandwiches" and "cake"...Sounds pretty good.

:: The Gorn turned to Nickels, and despite the fact that he had read the Commander's service record and knew it to be nothing less than an exemplary history of courage and heroism, he still couldn't shake the feeling maybe a tommy gun wouldn't be such a bad thing to have around. Rogg was a big lizard, but seemed kinda cute and curious. Ghyurn seemed to look at you like two quiet eyes peering up from a murky swamp, even when he was being kind. Maybe it was just a lack of familiarity. ::

GHYURN: :Turning to Nickels:: What is ... sssstickball?

NICKELS: :: quirking his eyebrows, he wondered at how fast word traveled here :: It's the latest craze ta hit Ba'ku since homespun dresses. A game of skill an' prowess unmatched anywhere outside'a Tsunkatse an' Brockian Ultra-Cricket. We had a pretty good little game goin' in town when the bells started ringin'.

GHYURN: Hmmm. Perhapssss we could finish the game when the wedding is over.

NICKELS: :: grinning :: Sounds great, boss. I'll let Rocko pitch to ya an' vice versa so neither of ya accidentally line drive a smokin' hole through the pitcher.

GHYURN: :Nodding:: Here comessss the bride.

:: The crowd slowly settled and watched the procession, and rapidly became lost in the grandeur and elegance of the ceremony. The Captain's usual air of leonine fierceness was damped down, and Redstone looked simply spectacular - gorgeous, really. He'd have wolf whistled if it wouldn't have meant his swift death. Watching the soft and honest love the two commanding officers courageously laid at each other's feet, Nickels found his mind wandering. On taking courses in literature during prep school, he'd read through a lot of poetry … all of which he remembered, with the eerie photographic quality of the Iotian memory. A thousand poems about love drifted through his mind as he stood watching two people who had struggled through so much find a way to finally express the bond they had earned through fire and blood. Their determination, their strength, their devotion called to mind the noble paean to the power of love by the great Terran poet Tennyson:

Heart, are you great enough
For a love that never tires?
O' heart, are you great enough for love?
I have heard of thorns and briers,
Over the meadow and stiles,
Over the world to the end of it
Flash for a million miles.

And even more than that, he remembered a great lyrical celebration of love's majesty by yet another Terran bard, Huey Lewis:

It don't take money and it don't take fame,
Don't need no credit card to ride this train.
Tougher than diamonds and stronger than steel,
You won't feel nothin' till you feel -
You feel the power, just the power of love
That's the power, that's the power of love!

And as the Captain took his lady in his arms and kissed her rapturously, Nickels remembered lips he'd kissed, girls he'd lost, and the life he'd left behind. But that was all then, and this was now, and here and now, Nickels Luciano whistled and cheered along with the rest of the crowd in celebrating the marriage that had beaten the odds. ::

Ensign Nicholas "Nickels" Luciano
Security Officer
USS Discovery-B