SIM:T'Lea Broken Part 6
JP Lt. Cmdr. T’Lea & 1st Lt. Dade Adarnis – Broken, Part 6
Sacrifice. Under the wrong circumstances the word could bleed the very soul of a person. It could rend and tear asunder innocent lives. It could be ugly. It could be violent. And it could be wicked. But when done willingly and freely out of love there was no interpretation of the word that was more beautiful.
Once again the rogue little planet of misfit aliens was at peace. Clean up crews were working hard to restore the city, and System Lord Reweq promised that in the days to come, with his leadership, there would be great changes that would benefit every hardworking citizen. He would open the borders to allow outside trade, establish a fair justice system, and clean up the streets of crime, drugs and dirty cops. They had been lucky, he’d said in his speech, the earthquakes had only take one life, his predecessor, Pelco, and that the two they’d found in the desert were resting comfortably at his estate. Change was coming.
Guest bedroom number nine was large and luxurious. Masterpiece paintings adorned the walls. Crystal figurines laced the bookshelves and several well-placed vases of fresh cut flowers accentuated the already bright and cheery suite. The furniture was equally as exquisite as the art, with its lavishly hand carved woodwork and plush detailed tapestry loudly announcing to all that stayed in here, no expense was spared for your pleasure!
The large king sized canopy bed had clearly been slept in. The big fluffy comforter had been tossed back in a mess of sheets, and the wall of pillows had been laid to ruins. Where two had been, only one remained.
The remains of a tired but rested Marine lay in the crimson and white sheets, his leg wrapped up in white and his hair tossed into an unmanageable state. His head lay perfectly still on a cotton pillow, eyes open, watching what was to the side of him outside. His arms curled underneath his pillow propped him up slightly to see; to watch what he hadn’t been able to see before.
The balcony doors were open and a cool draft sailed through a set of wind chimes outside. T’Lea stood at the second story railing overlooking the moonlit lake below. The breeze ruffled through her delicate white silk robe, and skated over her smooth soft skin. She looked at peace with herself and the world.
Dade stood up and stretched, feeling vitality drift into every inch of his body. His hand reached up sleepily to scratch the back of his neck, his white linen pants nearly falling from his waist as he walked towards the open doors. Leaning on the frame, arm above his head, he saw the moon reflecting shades of unblemished light onto T’Lea’s dark hair.
He didn’t want to disturb the silence. Once Reweq had found them, they had done nothing but talk to one another. She couldn’t remember him at first and she still couldn’t; only in her small way did she remember how she felt about him and how she still felt as they lay in the crystal sheets of their room holding each other.
Adarnis: ::smiling:: Can you see the man on the moon?
She turned and her eyes smiled up at him. Her pale blue eyes.
T’Lea: Everything looks different somehow, but I don’t know why.
He stepped forward and gently slid his arms around her waist, clasping them together softly at her front; tenderly and delicate. Her frame fit into him perfectly, molding the shape of her back to his front. He kissed the back of her head softly, feeling her hair tickling his nose.
Accepting his affections, the Vulcan hybrid leaned into his embrace and rested there. Her voice still carried a smoky quality to it, but it was distinctively warm and unhurried; there was nothing hard or cruel about it at all.
T’Lea: Do you remember anything? How we ended up lost in the desert, or light years away from Federation Space?
He didn’t shy away or answer immediately. He looked out over the top of her head at the rebuilding city that lay before them. The ruins the System Lord was trying to put back together; the land held the memory of what had transpired. He’d made a decision that had taken him the whole night to finally settle upon. He sighed and closed his eyes.
Adarnis: I suppose it’ll come back in time.
She acknowledged with a small nod and set her haunting eyes back to the shimmering lake. As she thought, her hands feathered over the arms that held her. All she could remember about this place was waking up in the middle of the desert next to a man she hardly knew, but loved. Their clothes, she recalled, had looked as if they had walked through fire together. It was all very strange, and yet she didn’t care to question it any further.
Relinquishing a small content sigh she touched her chest; it ached occasionally when this man was near, like he was now.
Dade let his hand rest on hers, feeling her heartbeat through the back of her hand. He found her ear in the waves of her hair and nudged it slightly with the tip of his nose. The peak at the top, the tell tale signs of her heritage from both sides of the fence. He kissed it gently and let his hand fall from hers, sliding around her waist as he pulled away, moving around to her front.
The movement was gentle and flowing, as seamless as the moonlight sky. Touching her soft cheek he tilted her face up tenderly to meet his own in a small smooth kiss before her eyelids fluttered open, revealing those light blue eyes. He smiled, despite himself; her eyes a reminder from a past he had been charged with. Lana’s eyes. Her beautiful eyes looking back at him - his punishment but his saving grace.
Then his own violet eyes shone a mischievous sparkle.
Adarnis: Do you think he’s a voyeur?
T’Lea: ::nuzzling his neck:: Who?
Adarnis: This man on the moon…
T’Lea: ::softly:: Why would you think that?
Adarnis: Because… ::he grinned:: If I can see down that robe from up here, he must be getting a bird’s eye view, at least.
T’Lea: ::a twitch of her brow:: Jealous?
He grabbed her arm and lifted her up, throwing her over his shoulder in a fireman’s lift, carrying her into the bedroom and throwing her, as gentle as he possibly could onto the soft mattress. He lifted an eyebrow at her, fisting his hands and standing in a pseudo-superhero pose beside the bed.
Adarnis: You think you can wrestle with a Marine, little lady?
T’Lea: ::cocking a condescending brow:: Little lady?
Honestly, she couldn’t give a definitive answer to his question. Her memory held no record of violence, or the capability thereof. It was a blank slate in that regard. But to T’Lea it didn’t feel like anything was missing. It merely felt like a clean white canvass on which she could paint anything she wanted. And right now she wanted Dade painted on her canvass, every exquisite square inch of him.
Tugging him down by the drawstrings of his linen pants, she gently yanked him closer, her hands climbing up his back at the same moment she received his penetrating kiss. The way he moved with her was strangely intuitive, as if he knew what she wanted, how she wanted it, and exactly when. But whereas in times past she had exerted a heavy hand over him to show that she was in control, T’Lea now expressed a surprisingly feminine and gentle touch. Perhaps that would change at a later date, but at this moment she wanted nothing more than to experience Dade in complete control; to know him in that way.
It surprised him, her taking the submissive role for a change, not that it wasn't welcome; it just wasn't what he was used to. Her change had made her different in a number of ways, she was becoming more tentative, her touch was different, sensitive and soft instead of the rough she used to edge him on with. He bent his head to kiss her neck and felt her respond to the gentle touch of his lips on her skin. They were completely alone in their own world.
Without ego, and without the stains from her past, T’Lea willingly and freely accepted the pure rush of emotion as it was translated into the untainted physical divine. And this time, somewhere deep in the back of her mind, she knew that for both of them, there would be no consequences to face afterwards.
The stillness and quietness of the room was the most wonderful thing Dade had heard in a long while. For a few minutes, he’d watched T’Lea sleeping, blissfully unaware of the change that had occurred. Her sacrifice had brought them to this pinnacle, where there was no turning back. She had forcibly changed herself. No memories of her past existed; of anything she had done. In the cavern, she had atoned for her past and wiped her slate clean. Her debt to the immortal universe had been accounted for.
He stood outside on the balcony and blew smoke into the sky above. The moon was beginning to give way to the dawning of the twin suns; a new day for the thriving city. The smoke wisped up through the air, clouding the small twinkling stars in the distance. One of those stars would be SB118… far in the distance, in another quadrant. Another would be Shinraka with the Challenger not too far away on SB24. Life had carried on without them.
Life. His free hand slipped into the pocket of his linen pants. Life was precious but T’Lea had been willing to end her own, end their own for a life where she was free. He had wrestled with himself over the decision to tell her but refusing was different to waiting. It wasn’t the right time. She needed time to see everything again with her new eyes, her new look at life and then he would tell her. Then, and only then would he decide.
He looked at his hand holding the cigarette. It looked more youthful; more vibrant then it had before. His scars around his wrist were gone and all that remained was a white band of ribbon with four Japanese symbols; the signs of the fuurinkazan. ‘Move as swift as a wind, stay as silent as forest, attack as fierce as fire, unmovable defense like a mountain’ – The Art of War. A belief he had been cultured in, taught from a young age – his volatile nature had been softened and nurtured into a fighter for peace – for the Federation.
For a second, Dade thought he saw a shuttle maneuver down onto the planet but when he looked properly it had gone. He dimped the cigarette out into the ashtray on the balcony wall and with another look outside, he walked back in.
The Vulcan-hybrid gave a soft morning moan as she rolled over in bed and awoke to the very faint, but reassuring smell of cigarette smoke. She stretched, feeling the silky sheets against her skin, and fully enjoyed every delightful second of those wonderfully groggy moments when the layers of sleep began to peel away.
There were things T’Lea knew. Things she didn’t know. And things that she would come to know once more, like the familiar scent of Dade and his cigarettes, or the way his fingertips traced the length of her forearm when he thought she was asleep. Where solid memories had failed her, it was the simple things that left no doubt in T’Lea’s mind about the man she was with.
Opening her fresh pale blue eyes, T’Lea watched as Dade dashed out a cigarette and came back inside. She didn’t know how, or why this had happened to her, but it hardly mattered. She just knew that somehow it was okay. That everything was okay. And sometimes that was enough.
T’Lea: I believe I could stay like this forever, though it would be highly unproductive.
Adarnis: That it would; you wouldn't be able to Lord it up over the peons.
He walked slowly over to the bed, crawling finally onto the mattress, back into the folds of her arms.
She reached out and accepted him as he took the submissive position, she’d noticed; his head resting on her chest, his arm hooked around her well-cut stomach. It slightly surprised her, considering how dominant he’d been last night, but she welcomed it, and for a moment honored the silent closeness they shared. Everything felt so familiar and yet so new all at the same time.
T’Lea: ::randomly:: There are over one hundred neuropressure points on the humanoid body. Several of which are pleasure centers. I don’t know how I know this. ::she cocked her brow as a matter of fact:: But I do.
Dade smiled; this was perhaps the most relaxed and contented moment either of them would have again for a long time. He closed his eyes and listened to her rhythmic heartbeat.
Adarnis: You know a lot of things you can't explain.
For a moment her fingertips lightly mocked the shape of a pleasure point on his back before keying in on his body art.
T’Lea: Interesting. This looks significant. Does it mean something?
His in breath was deep, remembering what he had to go back to. Adarnis: A while ago, we decided to find that out. We went exploring, or rather grave robbing you called it, up in the mountains of Romulus. She traced part of the symbol on his shoulder blade, oblivious that her own tattoo was gone, as well as any scars, or evidence of healed broken bones in her body.
Adarnis: It err... ::he coughed slightly:: Well, we don't quite know what it is but it led us to some interesting caves and to an association that knew something of if, but not a lot. Its something to do with my history, my family; the Adarnis Project and the subject; Daedalus. ::He sighed:: But, we'll find something out soon enough... that's if you still want to be traipsing about the galaxy with me.
Her curious Vulcan brow perched all too easily.
T’Lea: If it’s important to you, then we should find out more about it. If it’s part of who you are, then you have a right to know. Don’t you think?
He swallowed, hard. And was very aware that she'd probably heard. Should he tell her? Did she want to know? Was this her trying to hint it at him? Should he? Didn't everyone have a right to know who they were underneath?
Adarnis: Yeah... Yeah, I suppose everyone does...
Sensitive to any subtle change in his vocals, her Vulcan ears picked up that something else was behind his voice. Sliding off the pillows and down to his level, she rolled on top of him, finding the sweet spot, and then teased him a couple of times with a possible kiss.
T’Lea: Did I say something to upset you?
Dade looked at her, really looked at her and found it hard to stop himself from spilling out every single detail. But, behind those pale blue eyes was the T'Lea he knew and loved, the one he'd fallen in love with was still there, it was the same old T'Lea without the painful memories, without the tormenting dreams, without the anguish of all those memories.
His fingertips curved over the tip of her ear and he smiled.
Adarnis: No, nothing whatsoever.
There was a knock at the door and for a fleeting moment that infamous look of annoyance flickered in T’Lea’s eyes, but it was gone as quickly as it came. Neither she nor Dade moved, hoping that whoever it was would go away. They didn’t. Eventually Dade got up and answered. On the other side of the brass knob was a servant, trying not to stare at the half naked man, or the woman he’d left in bed.
Servant: Beggings your pardons, Sir, but Master Reweq has provided a personals shuttle for you to departs at your leisures.
Adarnis: Shuttle ready, got that.
Servant: Very well, Sir. Shall I brings up breakfasts?
Adarnis: Yeah, fruit and anything remotely warm, thanks. He bowed himself away from the door as it closed. T’Lea curiously looked at Dade as he turned back into the room. His oblique muscles caught her eye and she got out of bed to meet him. Her hands found his sides, almost as if examining the raw strength of his body. And then she remember her own well-toned physique and craftily pieced the information together. Was she some kind of warrior as well?
T’Lea: Starfleet Marine training, they taught you self-defense, correct?
He lifted an eyebrow.
Adarnis: Wouldn't be much use without it. And I’d say you know a heck of a lot more than me.
She raised an eyebrow at that.
T’Lea: I don’t remember. Will you show me?
Old habits die hard. Being stripped of even the most basic evasive moves, T’Lea had no knowledge of how to fight, or protect herself other than a Vulcan nerve pinch, and that wasn’t always a practical option. It wasn’t bloodlust, her inquiry; it was just an innocent curiosity, a simple matter of comparative deduction, but there was a distinct possibility it could lead to much worse things later on.
Dade lifted his head slightly; it was only a nudge upward but to him it was surveying the subject. He'd been wrestling with her mostly through the night and she didn't have the same vigor, or the same strength she'd had before. There was something driving behind her, now her motivation for her self-defense, or even an offence attack would be her own safety, or if it came to it, another person's.
He slipped his hands around her waist, letting them fall in the small of her back, pulling her gently toward him.
Adarnis: If you want to know, then I'll teach you. Unfortunately, this can't last forever. You've got a duty to perform.
T'Lea: I understand.
Stepping back, a few feet away he held his palm up in the air and lifted an eyebrow to her.
Adarnis: Punch my hand.
She gave him a look, albeit Vulcany, that he was first of all crazy, and second of all illogical.
T’Lea: I don’t want to harm you.
Adarnis: I'm not asking you to punch me in the face, just the hand. ::he grinned:: It's not hard. Fist your hand and punch...
Tentatively balling up her fist.
T’Lea: How is striking your hand supposed to help me?
Adarnis: Well it's not exactly going to kill me, is it? Come on, give me what you've got.
T’Lea: Is this what they taught you in the Marines?
Adarnis: How to throw a decent punch, yes. Now come on...
T’Lea: It’s your hand. I have no reason to strike it. It has done nothing to me that I haven’t wanted it too.
He took in a breath.
Adarnis: All right, think of something else there, someone's face spouting the absence of logic in the world around us. Take a swing...
She could hear his voice frustrate and hers oddly reacted in the same way.
T’Lea: Visualizing it as something else makes no sense. Your methods are ::she was going to say illogical:: stupid.
Adarnis: Stupid? ::he laughed:: Stupid? Is that the best...
Impact. It came out of nowhere, like a moccasin bite with no warning. It was something T’Lea was not prepared for; her knuckles colliding with his palm in pure emotional anger, and he’d somehow provoked it out of her. The concentrated force had not only launched a mega punch, but a thrilling surge of power in her. She stepped back and looked at her fist, wondering where that force had come from, and if she could do it again.
His eyes opened slightly wider as pain ricocheted round his nerves, making them alive and tingle, to a point where his fingers felt detached from his palm.
Adarnis: You... You definitely got some strength in your arm... ::he blinked and held his hand:: Oww....
She looked at him with a hungry stare blazing in her eyes.
T'Lea: Show me more.
And he did, but mostly how to redirect the attacker’s energy into throws, locks and restraining techniques. It was a non-lethal and non-aggressive way of keeping an enemy off balance, and would give the Vulcan hybrid enough opportunity to protect herself, or use the nerve pinch to further subdue the opponent. T’Lea took to the style quickly, recognizing the power it gave her.
At one point, Dade threw a punch at her himself and she side stepped it with cat-like ease. It was becoming too easy for her to manipulate her opponent's movements, what they were most likely to do next. Dade didn't feel like he'd taught her anything her subconscious didn't already know. There would be times, flashbacks or moments of realization when something would click in her brain, alerting her to the fact that not all was what it seemed.
Boarding a shuttle was never an easy thing to do. Leaving behind somewhere you'd spent so many days, even weeks for was never simple but trying to drag your respective other half out of probably the comfiest bed in the galaxy was a feat performed only by men with death sentences.
Dade smoked the last one in his packet of Reds for the rest of the trip. He'd have to buy some back on SB118 Ops but that wouldn't be too long. A hop, jump and a skip and they'd be there, docking and on T'Lea's doorstep, saying their goodbyes. He stood outside the shuttle, wrestling with his conscience once more.
On one hand, he had a duty to perform. His Platoon needed the guidance and he couldn't just jump from one ship to another. On the other, he had T'Lea, now having to face a different world all together, one where she was no longer Public Enemy #1 but the prospect of it still hurt him. He wanted to be there with her, to catch her if she fell, hold her while she slept... Just be with her.
As he got rid of the cigarette he saw her. She looked the same; the same woman he'd bumped into in Mission Control, the same arrogant and self-centered egotistical maniac he'd fallen in love with, but she was seeing the world through different eyes. She didn't know how to fight, she was a Science Officer, through and through.
Tying her hair back, the Vulcan hybrid crossed the courtyard and walked toward the parked shuttle. She glanced up as she approached, giving Dade a small knowing smile. In a few short hours their lives would go back to normal. Normal? For a brief moment she wondered what exactly that meant. What was normal? But the thought was quickly cast aside. Instead, she thought back to the past few days with Dade, and those memories splashed through her mind in brilliant colors. They were good memories, ones that she would never forget.
He took her hand in his, lacing their fingers together.
Adarnis: Back to 118 and duty?
She stepped into him all too easily with her free hand resting low on his side, and her cheek brushing briefly against his. She caught a whiff of fresh cigarette smoke lingering on him, but then when wasn’t that sweet odor there?
T'Lea: If we must. ::pause:: Though, I wouldn’t be lacking anything if we did not return.
The words were there, right on the tip of his tongue. His eyes conveyed what his heart wanted to express. His hand touched the side of her cheek. There was no room for softness or love in Starfleet, they didn't mix. It never lasted. Once they stepped back on the Base, this connection, this unspoken love would test them at every twist and turn, second-guessing Commands and making decisions harder. But it was there.
Adarnis: You still gonna be kicking me out your quarters at all hours?
She moved her hand to his chest and there it stopped. He needed to go back. Back to Starfleet, back to the Marine way of life. She did not, but she would follow.
T'Lea: Not without a good reason.
Deadpan Vulcan logic, always sharp and on point to cover infinite possibilities, but this time it was delivered with an optional hint of mischief behind her eyes. Stealing a small kiss, she dragged her fingertips across his shoulders as she stepped into the shuttle, and then looked back at him.
Adarnis: Keep it to impulse, we're not in any hurry.