SIM:Varaan: The Old Ball and Chain
|Crew of Deep Space 26|
This SIM was written and presented on May 25, 2015, (corresponding to the IC stardate 239205.25).
((DS26 - Deck 11 Arboretum))
::Varaan walked in to the arboretum, resplendent in his dress whites. Even without the enhanced hearing provided by his E.A.R.S, he could tell from the sound of music and conversation that the promotions ceremony was just on the other side of a row of large ferns. Varaan made no move to circumnavigate the foliage and "join the party" just yet. It wasn't that he was apprehensive. Vulcans didn't get apprehensive. But he was cautious. Despite knowing Marcus already, and seemingly making some headway with Blueheart, and a fairly uneventful dinner with Anora and Conti, Varaan was sure he was still being considered an "outsider" with the crew. Crewmembers change assignments all the time without much notice, but this time...the senior staff did not trust him - Helling for certain, and Townson most probably.::
::In addition to that, Varaan had not had an opportunity to meet hardly any of the other officers. Haase he had met, and that had not gone very well either. But Haase was on temporary leave. Doctors, counselor...some had been at the briefing after Outpost Bravo, but there had not been time for a "meet and greet" then. And Varaan had heard that they had a diplomatic officer now assigned to them. Probably a good idea if Atlantis was to stay for any length of time in the Par'tha Expanse. The political situation everywhere in the Expanse seemed to be constantly shifting, and incredibly unstable.::
::Varaan and Admiral Krieger had both been removed from Project Colossus by Admiral Garcetti, and Varaan had been debriefed, but he still had his network of contacts and informants throughout the Expanse. One had contacted him not an hour ago with a piece of interesting information. The upcoming sitting of the Freeworlds Council was to be held in the Holonna system within the week...that was public. But Varaan's informant had heard that the Valcarians had been invited. That had tremendous potential to "go sideways", as Varaan's former CO would have put it.::
::Varaan had finally decided to join his new crewmates and had taken only a step when he heard the voice. He stopped dead.::
::Varaan was not one to be surprised normally, yet this was at least the third time in the last week. Of all the voices he would have expected to call his name, here, in an arboretum on an alien station, on the other side of the Jenatris Cloud, hundreds of light years from his home planet of Vulcan...the last voice he would have expected to hear was that of his wife.::
::He hesitated only a moment before turning slowly to face the Vulcan woman behind him. She was standing in the access hatch about 3 meters away, the bright light from the corridor behind her casting a soft white glow into the darker section of the arboretum Varaan was standing in. Her long, dark hair fell gently across the shoulders of the pure white dress she was wearing. Varaan simply stared. What had it been? Six years. He hadn't been home and seen his wife in six years. This was his only "regret" about being in Starfleet. He hadn't seen his wife in six years. Varaan's body seemed to move toward her of its own accord. He stopped directly in front of her. Everything seemed to be moving in slow motion.::
VARAAN: My wife.
::He raised his hand in a traditional Vulcan salute. She stepped toward him so that their bodies were only inches from one another. Her hand on the same side came up to mirror his.::
T'LANI: My husband.
::Together they moved their hands until the fingertips touched. The touch lingered. They were staring into each other's eyes, neither wanting to look anywhere else. Their voices were almost breathy.::
VARAAN: It is not disagreeable to see you.
T'LANI: I, too, am content to be in your presence.
VARAAN: May I ask why you are here?
T'LANI: The Science Academy has sent a team to study the nebulae here.
VARAAN: Logical. May I inquire...were you assigned, or did you volunteer?
T'LANI: It is a great opportunity. I could not...would not decline the offer...for many reasons.
::They stared into each other's eyes for another couple of seconds, the universe existing around them, but of no importance to them. Varaan seemed to shake the moment first.::
VARAAN: Is she here as well?
T'LANI: Of course. I could not leave her behind on Vulcan.
VARAAN: What of her studies?
T'LANI: She is already enrolled in the school here. Ms. Stone has assured me that a curriculum can be in place for her in the next couple of days.
T'LANI: She would like to see you. She...misses you.
VARAAN: And I her. I have been reassigned to the Atlantis, again. Intelligence Liaison and Officer of the Deck. There is a ceremony that is to begin momentarily.
T'LANI: I understand. Perhaps after?
VARAAN: Yes. I will find you.
::After another second of lingering looks, Varaan's wife elegantly turned to go. He watched her body move, wondering if there was something else he could say to extend their time together. She was walking slowly, probably wondering the same thing. Then the access door closed, ending the moment. Varaan looked at the door a moment longer, straightened his back to attention and took a deep breath, then turned and marched to his waiting crewmates.::