SIM:JP - Lieutenant JG Karynn Ehlanii and Lieutenant Ethan Brice - It Never Rains

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Karynn Ehlanii Brice
Karynn LtCmdr Red uniform.png
Chief Counselor
USS Columbia

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This takes place shortly after Lt. Brice finds out that Rebecca Hollendale is leaving the USS Ronin and taking their son Matthew James Brice to Earth.

((Karynn's Quarters, USS Ronin))

::The Haliian watched the First Officer leave and then changed into the outfit she had been wearing earlier. She sat in a chair and curled her legs up to her her chest. Matthew was leaving. She had seen the way the little boy and his father had bonded - and how Ethan thought the world of him. And now he would be gone.::

Ehlanii: Computer. What is the location of Ethan Brice.

Computer: Ethan Brice is in his quarters.

Ehlanii: Is Rebecca Hollendale there?

Computer: Negative

Ehlanii: Thanks.  ::She took a deep breath and tapped her combadge.:: =/\= Ehlanii to Brice =/\=

Brice: =/\= Brice here, Lieutenant. =/\=

Ehlanii: =/\= A little bird told me you could use a friend right about now. =/\=

Brice: =/\= I'm fine… ::he coughed the quietness away:: I'm fine, really. =/\=

Ehlanii: =/\= I'd really like to be there for you the way you were for me earlier. Can I come over? =/\=

Brice: =/\= If you like… =/\=

Ehlanii: =/\= I'll be there in five minutes. Ehlanii out. =/\=

::Karynn tapped her badge and the line dropped. She worried that he didn't really want her company, but the tone in his voice confirmed that he could use someone to comfort him. She walked quickly out her door and headed to his quarters.::

((Brice's Quarters, USS Ronin))

::Reaching his door, Karynn took a deep breath and pressed the nunciator. oO Please, let me be there for you.Oo The seconds that ticked away seemed like an eternity but then the doors slid open and she could see him. He attempted a smile, which looked weak and forced, and stepped aside slowly so she could enter. Karynn entered and waited for the door to close behind her.::

Ehlanii: So... you're fine?

::She raised an eyebrow. He definitely didn't look fine, and few people would be fine after receiving the news that he did.::

Brice: Yeah, I… ::he swallowed:: I'm not sure what to do.

Ehlanii: ::with a gentle half-smile:: You could share the burden a little.

::Karynn followed Ethan with her eyes as he picked the bottle of whiskey from his coffee table and looked at it. He seemed to be contemplating it fairly intensely.::

Ehlanii: Ethan... have you been drinking a lot of that?

Brice: No, I've just been looking at it. ::he chuckled to himself:: It's almost as good.

Ehlanii: ::after a short silence:: How long will he be gone?

Brice:Six months or so. She needs to have the will read and Matthew will lose his share if he isn't there… or something like that. ::he covered his yawn:: Understandable… I think…

Ehlanii: oO Understandable?Oo Did you try to stop her?

::He smiled and replaced the bottle on the table. Slouching on the sofa, he wiped over his face again. He needed a shave.::

Brice: I wanted to… I could feel myself turning in knots but… how can I? ::he locked at Karynn:: How could I launch into a self righteous speech after what I did? "You have no right; my child too…" blah blah blah.

::Karynn sat on the couch next to him. She wanted to reach out and touch him, but for the first time in a while, she felt like she needed permission to do so. They were his feelings and she had no right to invade them. She let her hand drift close to his, hoping that it would communicate her wishes.::

Ehlanii: You mean when you left?

::He nodded and drummed his fingers on his knee. Such a simple motion seemed to be the hardest of them all. Still, Karynn's presence, just being there seemed to be calming to him. They weren't strangers any more and if he was honest, she was probably the only one who he would've let into his domain of solace.::

Brice: I thought I'd.... I'd made up for it. But at the end of it, I wasn't here when it mattered the most so why should I have him here with me? He's "our" son, not mine, not hers...

Ehlanii: That's true, but it also means he needs both of you, not just one.

::He looked at Karynn, letting his hand drop on hers. It was a comforting feeling, but he flinched quite suddenly; would she want to feel this?:: Brice: He also needs stability.

::The sudden rush of emotion was almost overwhelming but Karynn forced herself to accept it all. She gave his hand a slight comforting squeeze while assimilating the loss and depression coming through their link. The longer she held his hand, the more she was able to sort through the feelings and distinguish one from another.::

Ehlanii: So how are you feeling?

::Ethan gave her a slight smile, mimicking her squeeze. He lifted their joined hands and let them fall back onto the sofa.::

Brice: Not so alone.

::She turned her body slightly so she was facing him.::

Ehlanii: I'm glad. We wouldn't want you to feel alone. You know you have some really good friends, right?

Brice: ::he nodded:: I know; though most of them don't know it.  ::he lifted an eyebrow at her:: How did you know about this?

Ehlanii: ::with a slight smile and a twinkle in her eye:: Like I said, a little bird told me.

Brice: A bird?  ::he smiled:: You're the Counsellor: talking to animals is a sign of madness, right?

Ehlanii: ::grinning:: Well, maybe this bird wasn't exactly avian... But I'm still glad he told me.

::Ethan shook his head and leant it on the back of the sofa, letting it fall to face Karynn.:: Brice: Thanks for coming.

::Karynn squeezed his hand and then reached over to brush a stray hair out of his face::

Ehlanii: Thanks for letting me come.

::The soft feeling was just that; comfortable and gentle. He sat up and slipped his arm over the back of the sofa and smiled softly, touching the side of her face with the backs of his fingers. The moment was a tender one; realigning Ethan's belief that he could just 'be' for once. Karynn had brought something out in him that he hadn't seen in a long while.::

::As their conversation progressed, Karynn had noticed a shift in the emotions she was feeling from him. As he brushed her face with his fingers, she could feel a contented happiness. The Haliian closed her eyes so the lack of visual input would enhance the other senses, and smiled a contented smile. She reached up and placed her hand gently over his.::

::The feeling made him close his eyes. It was a rush, a sensation and an elated calm at the same time; if such a thing could happen. His fingers touched the soft skin of her face as he moved. His palm smoothed along her cheek as he leant in to her, his lips gently, barely touching hers...::

::The sensation was surprising but felt so right. Karynn leaned into the kiss, absorbing and returning it in one fluid motion. It lasted only a few moments but in her mind an eternity seemed to pass before their lips separated again. She opened her eyes and looked into his, just inches away.::

Ehlanii: That was... ::she paused and smiled gently:: nice.

::Something had shifted, something quite intense between them. A quiet and gentle intimacy had seemingly crept in while neither of them had been paying attention. Ethan smiled, seeing hers and moved a lock of her hair behind her ear. She looked beautiful, in the rarest sense of the world. Rain was just water until you'd lived without it.::

Brice: Karynn, I...

::He paused and nothing came out. There was a quiet peace flowing between them, one that Karynn understood. No words were necessary, really. She leaned her head on his shoulder and whispered quietly.::

Ehlanii: I know.

The End

Lieutenant JG Karynn Ehlanii
Ship's Counselor
USS Ronin


Lieutenant Ethan Brice
Chief Engineering Officer
USS Ronin

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Lieutenant J.G. Karynn Ehlanii
USS Ronin NCC-34523
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Grieving as a Group Part I
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That Which Does Not Kill Me
Lieutenant Ethan Brice
Chief Engineer
USS Ronin NCC-34523
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