JUNE 2003

Authors: Lt Trisk s'Erael and Lt Cdr Elizabeth Schaeffer
Title: ?
ON:

Honesty was the best policy... or was that only in holonovels? "If I had died," Trisk started slowly, unsure of her reaction, "you would have been notified afterwards, with a brief message, without explanation as too how, or whether or not I could have been saved with Federation technology."

Elizabeth abruptly extricated herself from Trisk's arms and stood up. She began pacing tensely. "So what? Is that supposed to comfort me?" She stopped in front of Trisk. "The love of my life comes this close to dying...and I'm supposed to be ok with that? And if you had died...I would get an "explanation"? her voice rose with each statement.

Trisk reminded himself that he was preparing for this reaction, and his losing his temper would not help the situation at all. "It is our way... and you knew that when I left. I told you the risks, yet I still kept my word and returned. And that is all that should matter," he stood as well, his normally cold face was twisted in held back emotion.

Liz looked up at the tall man, her eyes blazing. "And I told you not to go in the first place! But instead of staying with the one you loved...you had to uphold mri honor and duty. And I nearly lost you because of it. Yeah, you returned...but how close did you come to being a permanent resident on Kutath?" she spat.

"Not very. Even if I had died, my body would have been blasted off to the Su... nevermind... but my point is I came back. And it was something that I would never be able to live with myself if I didn't do. Remember the Academy? I told you not to come after me when we went after the saboteur, but you came anyway. Why?" Trisk already knew the answer. But she needed to hear it as well.

"Why? Do you need to even ask that? I came after you because you needed me...and I knew it. I wasn't going to leave you to handle it by yourself. That's different from what you did..." she said in a rush.

"Not really. I gave you a direct order which you disobeyed. The situation was too bad to risk two lives... yet you wouldn't have been able to live with yourself if you hadn't. You risked your life for an ideal, the same way I did. You wouldn't have been able to tell me you loved me if you hadn't, and I wouldn't be worthy of you if I couldn't do the same," his voice was still even...

A note of pain came into the angered tones of her voice, "Trisk...I risked my life for you...not for an ideal." She paused for a moment, as if just realizing it for herself. All through her life, she had been so focused on duty...she hadn't seen far beyond it. It wasn't until she met this man that everything began to change. "Trisk...you're worthy just as you are..." she said, her tone softening with pain, her hands tightening into fists. "How can you say you would risk your life for an ideal? Your life means more to me...than anything else," she said, a bit surprised at herself.

Trisk became quiet. "My kel'anth told me something when I was little... I questioned everything we do, as so many die. He told me 'We do not fight to die. Nor we play Shon'ai to die. We do it to live'. It was a while before I understood what he meant, but to survive despite all odds is what makes one a mri. If I am not a mri, if I do not have my heritage, I can not find inner peace."

He gazed out the viewport, his silence lingering. "I hoped that you, of all people, would understand. It's a need for acceptance, by both myself and my people. It is not something I could ignore."

Liz closed her eyes for a moment, trying to stem the flood of emotions. "I understand why you did it…I have always known how much your honor means to you. But that does not mean I have to agree with what you did." She felt herself trembling slightly. This was not how she had wanted it to be…arguing with her beloved on the eve of his return. She turned away from him. Suddenly, she felt Trisk come up behind her, but she did not turn.

"I dreamed you were dead," she murmured. She almost choked on it. "I kept seeing you lying there, the life ebbing away…and there was nothing I could do." She drew an unsteady breath. It was all welling up inside her…all of the emotions she had been stifling for months now. "I kept dreaming about it…over and over. It was like torture…"

Trisk was stunned into immobility, not wanting to understand – but seeing all too clearly. They had both been through hell. "Elizabeth…even in the darkest moments, it was the thoughts of you that kept me alive," he said simply.

Liz faltered. She turned, meeting Trisk's gaze in the low light. Trisk approached her, taking her by the shoulders. "Don't ever scare me like that again," she murmured, gripping the mri's waist and burying her face against his chest. "Damn you."

Trisk closed his eyes. He could not think. "I missed you so," he whispered, aching with it.

Elizabeth lifted her head, gazing into Trisk's yellowish eyes. "Did you mean it? That you would stay?" her tone laced with some harshness still. But her eyes belied the need so clearly written there.

"I will stay with you as long as you wish it," his dedication expressing itself so clearly in those few words.

Liz had no more words…she felt completely drained. Trying to think of something to say, she felt Trisk's hand bring her chin up to look at him. He raised an eyebrow, "Is that what you wish?"

"Yes," she whispered, before she was gathered closer in his arms, feeling his lips press against hers with the intensity of his love.

OFF:

A collaborative effort by:
Lt. Trisk s'Erael
Strategic OPS Officer
and
Lt. Cdr. Elizabeth Schaeffer
2nd Officer/CTO
USS Edison

MAY 2003

Author: Ens. Dara Montgomery
Title: SB720 #92
ON

{Sickbay - following Captain's departure in #91}

Dara had finally met her new captain. He seemed very nice, and she knew that he must be a good man because he had the sincere and unqualified love of a good woman and some fantastic kids. It was a good indicator of a person's character that their family loved them even when there was little hope to be reunited with them.

She was a bit more concerned about the Whyaati. He was very complex mentally and physically, the first of his kind that she'd encountered. Not to mention, Dr. Tal was hardly emotionally qualified to be his sole healthcare provider in this instance, and that forced a tremendous burden on Dara's inexperienced shoulders. There was so much wrong with Dunkain, and his psych files had been a mess before this had even happened.

Sighing as she watched Tal approach again, she moved slightly to one side of Nexx's biobed but didn't depart. Tal looked at her pointedly and she just smiled with gentle determination and squared her tiny shoulders. "Mr. Dunkain will require more than just your care if he's going to heal."

Tal opened his mouth, his haggard face filled with anxiety. He closed his mouth tiredly without ever having spoken. He simply shrugged and nodded.

Dara reached a small hand toward his shoulder, tentative at first, and then boldly when he didn't object. She closed her eyes and centered herself, drawing in positive energy from her core and mentally focusing it like an electrical charge within the smooth surface of her palm. She opened her eyes with a grin and began to massage Tal's shoulder. He looked surprised, like a deer at a crow's call. Suddenly his face melted into blankness and the tension slid from his body. He would have fallen over except that she'd positioned her body by his side where she could slide his arm around her to ease him into a chair.

"I really need to work, Counselor. Nexx needs me. I don't have time to relax!"

But his feeble protests fell to the wayside as she deftly manipulated his pressure points and channeled the bad energies out of his body, purifying him. Starfleet Medical had not expressly condoned this practice of hers, but she knew that her teachers had been impressed with the results. Sometimes the old ways are best, she thought as she tapped his occipital lobe with her long fingers, building energy pulses in the vital nerves there, stimulating blood and oxygen flow to the brain. She removed her hands from him and waited.

The doctor stood and shook himself slightly, as though in disbelief. "What did you do to me? I feel great! Well, great, considering."

"Just a trick my grandmother taught me. Passed down from mother to daughter in my family for hundreds of years out of counting. The effect won't last forever though, so get to work." She flashed him her dazzlingly white smile and winked at him. "Nexx needs both of us now. I just wanted you to be at your best."

"Thanks. Now let's get to it," he said, eyes intense once more as he stood over Nexx's still form.

OFF:

Acting Ensign Dara Montgomery
Ship's Counselor
USS Edison

FEBRUARY 2003

Authors:Lt(jg) Nexx Dunkain and Ens. Kellen Tal
Title: "Triad #35"
ON

TAL QUARTERS
EVENING FOLLOWING #29

It was evening, and Kell and Nexx had fallen asleep. Kell lay in bed, the sheets twisted
around him, and Nexx lay beside him, his head on the Trill's chest. Slowly, the Whyaati
woke, opening his eyes and looking up at his lover's face, set in silhouette.

Slowly Nexx leaned down and, after a short hesitation, kissed his lover's cheek and nuzzled
him, his que dangling over Kell's beautiful, illuminated face. Nexx smiled and slowly sat up with a soft, fatigued sigh. He pushed the sheets completely off his frame and walked into the bathroom. He glanced around and found the light key and tapped it once, for a dull and
candle-light glow.

Quietly, Nexx glanced in the mirror and was surprised by the image staring back at him.
Large dark bags hung under his eyes, yet camera-like iris had dialated back to their natural
sizes. His hair was still matted, from restless sleep.
Casually, Nexx ran his fingers through it in a vain attempt to give it some semblance of normalcy.
Rolling over in his sleep, Kell woke himself when he found that Nexx had gone. "Dunkain?" he
called softly into the darkness, not opening his eyes.

Nexx glanced back, having felt Kell stir from unconsciousness moments before the Trill actually spoke. "Here, Kell," replied Nexx softly, moments before he dipped his hands in the cool water of the sink and brought his hands to his face.

"How are you feeling?" asked the Trill, not wanting to get up from bed.

Nexx felt blindly for a towel and when he finally found one, brought it to his face and dabbed the cold liquid from his face. Nexx then stood and let out a breath upwards, causing his bangs to briefly flutter in the exhaled wind. "I look like hell," he commented half-jokingly as he traced his finger down over a bag under his eye, examining the bloodshot pinkness beneath.

Chuckling, Kell finally conceded and sat up in bed, albeit with some effort. "You? I'm the one that was unconscious for two days."

He grabbed his crutches and stood up from bed, hobbling to the entrance to the bathroom. "I'm just happy you're feeling better, is all."

Nexx was busily running his fingertips across the bare skin of his chest. "Well I guess this is a good sign. The Blush is gone... and this damn Heat Patch is going away," Slowly he reached under his arm, prodded and winced, "Telk glands are still really sensitive." Shaking his head, Nexx glanced back at Kell and smiled toothily. "I didn't mean to wake you up, babe."

Kell smiled in return, nodding his agreement. "Yes, you do look better," he said. "And don't worry about it. I don't mind."

Turning around, he made his way back to bed, lying back down and laying his crutches on the floor. "Come back to bed?" he asked.

Nexx grinned coyly back behind him, "Well aren't we just the perfect gentleman, Doctor? Waiting until I can decide for myself before you invite me to bed?"

Kell chuckled as he rolled over in bed to face the restroom. "Whatever do you mean, my dear?" he asked, feigning innocence.

Nexx looked at Kell through the mirror and rose his eyebrow, chuckling. "Uh huh," he said as he tapped the light key and turned around. Slowly he made his way back into the bed, careful
not to jostle Kell's back.

Wrapping his arms around the smaller man's frame, Kell nuzzled Nexx's neck. They just laid
there for a bit, content in each other's arms, before the Trill broke the silence. "I love
you, Dunkain," he whispered. "Don't you ever forget it."

"I love you too, Kell," Nexx said, almost shyly. Nexx then frowned for a moment as he placed his hands on Kell's chest. mentally he felt the urge to push away. What had felt like the gentlest push earlier had sent the Trill to the sickbay. Nexx glanced up at kelK, trying to hide the sensation with a grin. He batted his eyes and and went to kiss Kell. The image flashed back in his mind and at the last instant, he kissed Kell's cheek.

However, the Trill realized that something was wrong. Reaching up to cup Nexx's cheek, hs
gently ran his fingers along the Whyaati's jawline. "What is the matter?" he asked softly.

Lifting Nexx's chin, Kell forced him to meet his eyes. "I know better than that. Tell me, please," he pleaded. This was the man he loved, through hell or high water, and he wanted to know if the smallest thing was amiss. And it didn't help if that information wasn't forthcoming.

Nexx looked deeply into Kellen's grey eyes, "I'm... sorry Kell. I'm just nervous, I guess. The last time I touched you, I almost killed you. And if you had died..." Nexx trailed off and looked away. "If you had died, I don't think I could have forgiven myself. You've been so kind to me the last few days and I... well. Thats why tomorrow morning, I'm submitting myself for disciplinary action."

Kell's eyes widened, and he immediately shook his head. "No. I refuse to allow you to do that," he said. "You were not in a stable frame of mind, and I refuse to press charges."

After a pause, he continued. "Can you not accept that everything is forgiven?"

Nexx smiled at Kell and brushed his lovers cheek, "Kell, this is required by my beliefs. A Whyaati is always accountable for his actions. The Heat is no different. I'm not going to defy thousands of years of tradition just because I had it harder than most."
The Trill was silent for a long moment, facing a moral dilemma, and it was not a position he
enjoyed being in. Yet he finally came to a conclusion. "I cannot stop you, for I would be infringing upon your tradition," he said after a breath. "Yet, I also cannot approve of this, for it goes against my own values. In my eyes, you were not accountable for your actions, and therefore did nothing wrong." Cupping the Whyaati's chin, he continued. "But because I love you, I will not interfere, as much as I hate it."

Nexx cocked his head to the side and brushed his lips against the Trill's. "I know. I have
to ask my superior for forgiveness for losing my temper... and control. And then I have to ask Kovi for it." Nexx smiled warmly at Kell, who looked worried and conflicted.   Slowly, Nexx turned over onto his back, "Being a Whyaati means my life is ruled by tradition and ritual. Moreso, since I'm a Teynar. I've always accepted my path. My reason to stop now just because fate has cast a stone in the road." Nexx sighed softly and turned his head to look at Kell, "I suppose thats why not alot of other races intermarry with our own. Inevitably, innocent outworlders are forced to live our way."

Sighing, Kell pulled Nexx close, wrappiong his arms around the smaller man. "Dunkain, I love you, and will do anything for you. You know that," he said. "And that is the only reason I am not interfering... directly." The Whyaati began to protest, but was silenced when Kell laid a finger on his lips. "However, I am, for my own moral peace, going to speak to the Captain, and ask that he keep the 'offense' in mind when deciding the punishment. Is that an acceptable compromise?

Nexx kind of rolling out a long "uhh," but finally resigned, sighing. He grinned at Kell
and gently bit the tip of the Trill's finger. "I
suppose," he said awkwardly.

Smiling, Kell nodded. "Good. Now, let's go back to sleep. I'm tired, and you need rest as
well."

Nexx nodded and slowly turned away from Kell. Moments later, he felt Kell wrap his arms around his chest and hold him. Nexx smiled as his eyes grew heavy and together, they drifted into slumber.
OFF

A collaborative effort by:
Ensign Kellen Tal
Chief Surgeon
USS Edison
&
Lt JG Nexx Dunkain
Chief Conn
USS Edison

JANUARY 2003

Author: Kal Mi'nor
Title: "Triad 13"
ON:
===Ten Forward===

*Kal had just brought a second round of fresh gagh to the Klingons, when he heard the doors open. He stuck his head out to see what was going on when he saw them. Five rather imposing Romulan had walked in and sat themselves down at a table in the corner.

Kal: ~Oh boy... I can't wait to see how the Klingons are going to take this~

*He thought to himself, but when he looked at the klingon, they were almost ignoring the Romulans. They saw them enter of course, but they paid them little attention. At least the klingons were well fed, and happy. (Two rounds of gagh, God knows how many rounds of Blood Wine, and countless other Klingon dishes had subsided their 'natural' instincts to kill all Romulans).

Kal washed his hands for the eighth time, and started to walk over to the Romulan table. He noticed one of them, a woman had on a very expensive robe, and was obviously someone of high importance. She of course, should be address first.*

Kal: *In romulan* hveolhaonn htaodt'ia'rhoinnie uaefvalhuneitrde'h'n 'ie arthhi e aeek'h'i il''ukiudh hveolhaonn iekil'eirh ehdhihss vahuus hvaedroalh e? [Ah, good evening. I will be your chef this evening. What may I have the pleasure of cooking for you?]

Kareel: *raising her eyebrow* 'ie Rihanha 'hh dignair. raed'aeusnnta'jhiy hravher i'mae veisa iudaiht aehjaeih hna'h taru' nnharai ssalli [Your Romulan is very good. Do you know how to make a Taru' Fire Salad?]

Kal: *bowing his head* voi daie nnearh deihu, aellei hann'yyo e ahefvi swai 'ie adl 'ie nnearh deihu [Why, yes, your excellency, and thank you for honoring me with your words, your excellency.]
*Romulan were very interesting creatures. You had to show them proper respect, in order to get any form of respect back.*

T'lek: *his arms folded, but he had a soft, impassive look on his face* au'e idhaeiiiaekssrai khlinae. [Yes, she does.]

Centik: uaefvalhuneitrde'h'n nrai T'Lek! [Be quiet T'Lek!]

Kareel: *in english* Now, I shall speak in your language Andorian. *Kal bowed at her words* I will have a Taru' Fire Salad.

Centik: I shall also have that.

T'lek: I will have anything, except whatever filth those Klingons are eating. *Kal still bowed, more out of honor than respect.*

Kal: ~If you show honor to one Romulan, you must also show honor to the entire group... especially if they think you are below them~ *he thought to himself*.

Valis: I am Sub-Lieutenant Valis. I will have a Katar steak, with a water bean sauce. *Kal bowed again*

Bakor: I am Centurian Bakor. I will simply have a glass of water. *Kal bowed again.*

Kal: *turning toward the female who was obviously in charge* Your excellency. If you would please forgive my impertinence, what may I ask, is your name?

Kareel: I am Senator Kareel, and this is my husband, Centik.

Kal: Your honor me with your presence, senator. Your meals shall be brought to you expeditiously. *Kal bowed again, and scampered off to the kitchen.*

OFF:

=/\= =/\= =/\= =/\= =/\= =/\=
Kal Mi'nor
5 Star Chef - USS Edison



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