SIM:Yours, and Your Alone

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((Sickbay, USS Apollo))

It had been one of the most eventful 24 hour periods that he could ever remember, but the one thing on his mind now was Jalana. He had thought about her throughout most of it, but especially with the recent attack, he needed to know she was ok. He made his way into the infirmary to find her hard at work. ::

Lanius: Do you need any help in here Doctor?

Laxyn: ::Smirking:: I'll tell you when you can call me Doctor without getting the evil eye. :: She then shook her head :: Most injuries were minor, thankfully. A few cases were not that lucky but are alright now. We will have a few visitors for a day or two, though.

Lanius: And the one from the Complex? How is she? Oxford predicted surgery...

Laxyn: ::Her eyes wandered to Tao:: Yes, we just finished the surgery. She has to be monitored but tomorrow we will know more. For now she rests. ::raising her eyes to Viktor:: I heard that you have done great work with her. Thank you.

He met those stunning green eyes with the same giddiness that he always felt. In spite of all the death and wounds within the sickbay, it seemed to be the only thing that made it all tolerable. ::

Lanius: So did the rest of my team. It was a group effort...

Laxyn: I will thank them later. She was lucky to have you there, she would not have made it if we found her in a few hours during clean up. ::Jalana placed her hand on Viktor's arm, mostly to help her balance but she hoped he would not notice, but also because it was just good to feel that he was alright after what she had seen today. ::

He instinctively braced her under her arm and around her back. It wasn’t an actual fall, but he might as well have treated it like one. He touch was more than welcoming. It seemed that it had been days since they’d shared any contact. To Viktor, it was almost distracting, but he did well to keep himself in check. There would be plenty of time to share with her, especially in the coming days. ::

Lanius: Are you alright? ::There was genuine concern on his face now ::

Laxyn: oO So much for that Oo Don't tell the CMO but... I still haven't eaten anything, if I don't count the cake in the brig this morning, and I think my body does not like that.

Lanius: I’m no medical expert, but I tend to agree.

Laxyn: Yes, apparently the Klingons didn't like our lunch idea. How about you? Did you have anything but cake?

Lanius: ::He scoffed :: Dopes being in the Complex count? Even if I didn’t eat?

Laxyn: Mhm, what does your schedule say about grabbing something now?

Lanius: My schedule says that my quarters would be a great place to eat right about now...

He did well to remove his hands from the Doctor’s waistline, knowing that some of the others had seen them. It was becoming harder for Vik to conceal his need for her, harder to conceal their relationship. Most certainly, people knew by now. He’d recalled the way Cayden looked to him in the Brig, she must’ve figured. It was just something the two of them would have to discuss at some point in time. ::
Jalana held her eyes on him, almost regretting that he let go of her again, though they were still ‘on the clock’ and they hadn’t have the time to talk about the show and tell of their relationship and if it was one, which she hoped. So she understood and smiled at his suggestion. ::

Laxyn: That sounds perfect.

Lanius: Drop by when you're finished?

Laxyn: Give me an hour to wrap things up and freshen up?

Lanius: Take whatever time you need Lieutenant. I’ll head back and get things ready.

Laxyn: ::Smiling she gently squeezed his arm as substitute for the kiss she wanted to give him:: Wonderful, I see you in an hour then.

Lanius: It can’t come soon enough :: He smiled and returned the touch. ::

((Timeskip - Quartier Lanius))

After Jalana had taken care of the last things on Sick Bay she could not wait to get into her quarters and take a shower. Her mind wandered first through the memories of the day, then back to Viktor, her reaction to Cayden and him being so seemingly close. She knew she was ridiculous but she still thought about having a talk with Vik about the status of their relationship. Maybe not starting with it, since they both needed some time to relax after this day, but maybe somewhen this night. When she arrived at Viktor’s quarters her hair was still damp, but she put it into an updo so it would not be too obvious, single strands framed her face, so it would not look too strict. Every now and then a drop of water founds its way down onto the back of her sleeveless teal colored dress, it felt light and summery even when there were no seasons in space. She raised her hand to press it on the chimer and smiled when the doors opened and she looked at him::

Laxyn: I hope I’m on time.

Lanius: For you my dear, I’ve all the time in world . Please, come in. :: The smile was ear to ear. ::

He’d seen her thus far in quite a few shades of light, different outfits and work situations. But there was something about this most recent visit that was different. It had nothing to do with how she was dressed, or the way she presented herself. It was more than that. It was a feeling that he’d only felt but maybe once in his life. ::
The events that had unfolded against and aboard the Apollo in the last few days had presented her crew with certain danger, and for some, death. He realized in that moment that what he felt was the same thing he’d felt every time he had heard her voice on the other end of the comm, or when he managed to see her, even just in passing. He cared for this woman even more than he’d realized. It was more than a curiosity, or an intuition, it was a need that he couldn’t deny or store away any longer. ::

Lanius: :: Heading towards the sofa, he turned to her, looking down to her deep green eyes. :: It feels like its been an eternity, no?

She felt the tingle in her neck when she passed him to the seating area and could not help but smile. The apartment smelled like him and that was calming, such a peaceful feeling washing through her mind. When he stepped next to her and turned she looked up and almost drowned in his eyes, in the intriguing mix of black and blue.::

Laxyn: It does. It must have been the longest day in history.

Lanius: :: He pulled her close and kissed her :: Agreed... :: he said quietly ::

The Trill placed her hands on Viktor’s chest, welcoming his lips with hers. Gentle shivers ran down her spine as she enjoyed the touch, the closeness to him, something she had missed all day. He was right, it felt like an eternity since she had seen him and still it was only the day’s hours. As she leaned into him returning his kiss she inhaled with a slight pleasurable tremble. She could get used to this. But still slowly and just a little, their lips said a temporary good bye and she looked up to him. ::

Laxyn: ::whispering:: You have no idea how much I needed this. :: As if wanting to remind them, that it was still there her stomach rumbled loudly and she blushed with a chuckle. :: Even more than I need something to eat, apparently.

Lanius: That means the intel I obtained earlier today pointing to hunger were correct them. Lucky for you... :: He stood up and motioned into the dining area he had prepared for them. ::

It wasn’t much, as his room didn’t have a traditional dining area. He had placed a silk table cloth overtop of the bed, and had placed a replicated piece of glass over it to make a stable surface for them. The room was dim, but with a single brightly burning orb in the center of the table. It was a little something he’d learned to do in physics. Never before had it been used by him, until tonight. ::

Laxyn: Did you notice that all our dinners were hosted by you? You might start to think that I'm a bad cook. ::she smirked::

Lanius: In the old country, it wasn’t uncommon for a man to cook for his special lady... :: he made sure to break out with his homegrown Irish accent that took him years to suppress. He saved it for special occasions. He pulled out the chair he had positioned for her to sit. ::

Laxyn: Actually, the only things I cooked were ::she thought for a moment:: I think I use the replicator way too often to remember that.

Lanius: Well perhaps there might be some lessons in it for you. Tonight on the other hand, I’ll take care of it. Hang tight...

Laxyn: ::Smiling:: I can't wait to learn from the chef.

Viktor made his way back into the kitchenette he’d had built when he first made it aboard the Apollo. There were just some things he couldn’t live without, and the ability to make his own food from scratch was one of them. He had prepared a simple meal for the two of them. He didn’t want to be weighed down, and he figured Jalana wouldn’t want to either. ::

Lanius: :: Re-entering the room :: Cobe beef stir fry. Nice and easy, but very, very good. Is that alright?

Jalana looked into his direction when he came back and the scent of the food already floated into her nose, as if he placed a fan behind himself to fill the room with it. She closed her eyes for just a moment and enjoyed the anticipation. ::

Laxyn: Sounds and smells wonderful.

Lanius: Have you ever had Cobe? :: Setting the plate before her :: It’s hard to replicate properly in its raw form. In old times, the Japanese culture would raise these cows in a life of luxury, pampering them, massaging them, even talking sweetly to them. THey would feed them coffee, corn, yams, most anything sweet and nutritional. The end result :: Grabbing a piece with her fork :: Is a beef that melts away in your mouth, a little bit at a time :: He slowly moved the fork towards her. ::

The Trill listened and her brows wandered upwards, hearing how those animals were treated. She assumed that in older days they lived even better than their owners. But before she could think about this more he raised his fork and lead it to her. She leaned forward meeting the fork halfway as she opened her lips just enough to take the piece of meat between them and pulling it off the metal. Leaning back again she chewed and could hardly hold back a moan of pleasure. ::

Lanius: :: He smiled :: A replicator could never cook this the way it needs to be done.

Laxyn: Oh by the gods... this is unbelievable. Those were some happy cows.

Lanius: I like to think of it as a great lesson... I mean something as simple as... food. These people needed those animals, needed them to survive. And for that, they treated them as they should. Godsent. :: He took his seat across from her :: It funny how that works sometimes.

Laxyn: ::following him with her eyes:: It would have saved everyone a lot of pain, if people would act the same way with each other. There is always something we could need from someone, don’t you think? So why not acting that way.

Lanius: Such is the need for companionship. We can ignore it all we want, but in the end... :: the words trailed off and he just smiled at her, tipping his head to one side. ::

She smiled taking her own fork this time to enjoy another bite of the meal he had prepared. She knew how it felt when other people cooked for her, at her parents home they had a cook and waiters for that, but this was special. This was not his job, he did it because he wanted to and with how it tasted, he loved to do it and was good with it.::

Laxyn: This is fantastic Viktor. Thank you for doing all this extra work.

Lanius: Extra work? Hardly... Work would include a feeling of mediocrity, a seemingly endless search for satisfaction sometimes. This? This was instant bliss...

She blushed at his words, feeling the heat shooting right into her cheeks, giving them a nice pink tint. Jalana didn’t look up at him, kept her gaze on her fork as she lead it into her food again, before wandering to his hands, watching how he handled his own cutlery and for a moment her mind drifted to regions of their relationship they did not yet explore and the blush just became worse. Clearing her throat she found her way back into the present.::

Laxyn: Well, you achieved that not only for yourself. I feel very special right now.

Lanius: And that is exactly how you should feel. :: He took another bite. :: You know I was thinking... I may be someone that is fairly versed in the way of hiding one’s emotions... But I must admit. It’s becoming quite a chore in terms of you and I...

Finally Jalana raised her head and looked at Viktor. What did he say? For a moment she thought she must have understood the meaning behind his words and hesitated. But before she would guess too much and possibly get worked up over a misunderstanding she cleared her thought to ask. ::

Laxyn: Do you mean that... your emotions become a chore?

Lanius: Well surely I didn’t mean it that way... I more or less was referring to others. You know, people are aware of us.

Laxyn: Oh :: There was a pause in which she felt her stomach sink without her being able to control it. She didn't even know why she automatically assumed that it meant something bad.:: Does it bother you?

Lanius: No, it doesn’t at all. The question is, is that a step you’re willing to take with me?

This was one of those junctures in any relationship. The question being, was this going to be a relationship, or a constant ebb and flow of emotional tides that may or may not find their way to an end? He would have been fine with whatever she was about to say, but somewhere in him he already knew the answer. There was an unspoken communication between the two of them that he’d been susceptible to since the first day he laid eyes on her. It made him comfortable, secure. Comfortable enough to let down all the walls that years of awkward relations and trials had built. He felt that the time was more than right. ::
Now he had her surprised. That was really his question? Her eyes were fixed to his for a long moment in which her mind still tried to process what he actually talked about before she laughed. Not loud or bursting but nevertheless a laugh ::

Laxyn: Of course I would be willing. I'd be begging for it if it would not look so desperate. ::she chuckled.:: I... ::she shook her head:: Since our date I am wondering and trying to figure out how to behave in public with you, now that we are dating. ::She hesitated again, there it was again and now it was her turn to ask something on her mind. Again she hesitated and her voice changed to a softer and a little unsure tone.:: I mean.. we _are_ dating, right? I mean, I think we are but you know how people can think different things and the other one still had a different view...

She noticed that she was babbling, talking way too fast and way too much. Her cheeks turned red and she bit her lip silencing herself with it. She always did this when she was nervous. Well mostly, either talking like a waterfall or becoming quiet as a stone. Why she started the babble treatment in the most impossible moments, was a mystery to her.::

Lanius: For what it’s worth, I think saving ourselves some trouble, and some others the guess work, is worth looking into. And for once, I’m not afraid to say that. Especially to you Jalana. :: He set his napkin down and took a sip of the whiskey he’d poured himself at the start of the night. :: Jalana Laxyn, I would very much like to be yours, and yours alone...

He wondered at that moment why any of what came out of his mouth was amounting to. He didn’t know why, that even knowing what he knew about her, and about how they felt about each other, that he had to verify the information aloud. Perhaps it was his conscience really asking him if this was all real. if he had finally found someone that would understand him more than a friend would, someone that he could finally be cerebrally in tune with on a level that he’d not experienced in years. In a way, this must’ve all been a metaphorical pinch for him. ::
The way he said it lured a smile on her lips. At least he didn't think she was a nutcase for her more than embarrassing monologue. Her heart beat faster, though this time not because she was nervous, but because the meaning behind his words and her gaze lift to his eyes again.::

Laxyn: I would very much like that. ::Her voice was just a whisper, though still loud enough for him to hear clearly. Somehow the thought of him being all her's calmed her down, more than any long speeches about 'it isn't like that' could have done. Now she of course felt especially stupid about her reaction earlier, but it didn't really matter right now :: That of course also means that I would be yours, and yours alone. If you can live with that ::she smirked::

Lanius: I’ve got a long life ahead of me you know... Would you... care to join me? I have quite the replicated fireplace up and running you know... :: He smiled ::

Laxyn: ::Chuckled and raised to her feet:: Of course. And for your long life, you have a good almost doctor to take care you don't shorten it accidentally.

Though his words strung a cord of memory. There was something in the back of her head knocking at the door to her conscious thinking and it was pretty pushy. Then all of a sudden she remembered the conversation she had earlier. ::

Laxyn: The commission!

Lanius: I’m, I’m sorry? :: he looked at her quizzically ::

Laxyn: What? Oh. I'm sorry. oO So much for trying to be romantic Oo Do you remember our conversation about symbionts the other night?

Lanius: Of course.

Laxyn: Today just when the red alarm went off, I had a conversation with a Trill from the commission. I need to find myself a mentor, or I get some random one from them.

Lanius: Did you have any prospects? :: They went and sat together on the sofa once more ::

Laxyn: I have no idea. It is not that I have contact with many Trills at the moment.

She was correct in the way of there not being many Trills in the vicinity. But on the other hand, there was definitely one. His thoughts flew instantly to Cayden. If at the very least, she was a place to start. Cayden had become one of Vik’s close friends in their short time in service together, but he had learned a great deal about her resolve and character in that time. Right now, it seemed as good a suggestion to Jalana as any. ::

Lanius: What about Cayden? Surely she would agree to it?

Hearing the name, stirred something inside of her. Though it was not necessary, maybe it was even a different kind of feeling. She had noticed Cayden's look earlier in the brig, maybe the woman knew and nwo would think that Jalana was absurd or insane. Her reaction was not very obvious, at least something to save her face.::
He could tell there was a bit of contention there. He wasn’t quite sure what the source was, but her mood had changed but slightly. He wasn’t sure how she felt about Cayden, and the only thing he had to go off of was the slight mental exchange the two had in the Brig. He was strong in his suggestion nonetheless. ::

Laxyn: Do you think? She... seems like a busy woman. To take care of someone else like that must be a burden.

Lanius: That woman would take no greater pleasure than to help one of her own. Not to mention, In think sometimes she feels alone. Alone in this sea of people. I think it would be good for the both of you.

Laxyn: ::That she would feel alone surprised Jalana, she didn't know why. Thinking she nibbled at her lip:: Obviously, I don't really know much about her from the handful encounters I've had with her. ::Taking a deep breath:: Well, I could at least ask her if she knows someone, if she is too busy herself.

Lanius: :: He raised a finger to her lip. He could tell she was biting it. :: I think that when it comes to this, you should trust what you feel. You know what you have to do. And whatever support I can give, you can have freely... :: He leaned in close to her ::

Raising her eyes to him she gently placed a kiss on his finger that laid on her lips. The Trill nodded slowly. Yes she knew exactly what she had to do, especially if she did not want some complete stranger putting his nose into her business. When he leaned closer she smiled::

Laxyn: ::whispering:: Thank you, Viktor. I am very sure I'll be needing every ounce of it

She then leaned in as well and turned her head just ever so slightly to brush off his finger and replaced it with his lips.::
He gave into the gesture with his hands moving quickly to caress her face and neck. moving back to undo the knot that held her hair up. He watched as it cascaded around her face. He was finding it difficult to hold back any longer, and decided that it might have been time to throw it all to the wind. He moved back into her lips, he could feel the heat of her breath, the almost electric feeling of her skin. ::
The gentle touch of his hand on her skin sent shivers down her spine, when her loose hair brushed over her shoulders she sighed and scooted a little bit closer. Reaching out to place her hand onto his side, she grabbed the fabric of his shirt, held onto it as she got a little more courageous with the kiss. She didn't think anymore just felt, going with her emotions, and right now that was that she did not want to end it that fast, hoping she felt the same ::

Laxyn: ::whispering against his lips:: Ask me to stay.

Lanius: Please do...

Laxyn: ::Smiling:: I thought you'd never ask.

With that she brought her lips back where they belonged, forgetting everything outside the little bubble that was their world right now.::

-- Lieutenant Viktor Lanius Chief of Intelligence, Second Officer USS Apollo, NCC-71669


Lieutenant jg. Jalana Laxyn Chief Medical Officer USS Apollo, NCC-71669