Posted on Saturday, 4 February 2023 - 6:34pm by Lieutenant Alex Kingsley & Lieutenant Haru Hernandez & Lieutenant JG Maximus Mackenzie
Operation: My Unfair Lady
Location: Various | USS Standing Bear
Mac sighed again as Haru sipped up another bag.
Haru looked up. "What?"
"You've been sighing all morning."
Mac opened his mouth and closed it. "It's just hard, to leave...don't get me wrong Starfleet was not in my plans but Soral is at his most Vulnerable."
Haru gave a nod. "I get that but we can best help him by being on New Romulus, and caring for Bones, and making sure that his Ex isn't causing problems."
Mac sat down rubbing his forehead. "Yeah...still."
Haru laughed. "He'll be fine. He's got Hamura."
Approaching the quarters of her adopted wider family, Alex paused for a moment before pressing the door chime. She knew neither Mac or Haru were prone to ill considered decisions and so she was sure they would have no need for counsel. Yet the idea of not seeing either of them for - well - how long was a long time? It made her sad.
Pressing the door chime, she waited for a response before stepping inside.
Mac looked up just as he was about to make a smart-ass comment about Hamura. He sighed. "Think it's Soral?"
Haru chuckled. "No." He gave him a wink. "Come in please."
Entering, Alex barely made it a full step before an excited Beagle came rushing towards her. “Hey Bones,” she grinned, scooping up the puppy and scratching behind his ear. As Bones surrendered to the attention, Alex eyed the two people she had came to see. “So, you really are leaving…”
Mac sighed. "Yeah." He walked up to her and hugged her followed by Haru who was still shaky on his legs but moving well.
"Come in, how about a drink," Haru said.
“That would be great, thank you,” Alex nodded as she set Bones down, watching as he set off in search of a toy. For the small canine, it was once again playtime. “Already packing. Does that mean you can’t be talked out of leaving?” It was clear from her tone that she already knew the answer would be a resounding no.
Mac walked over to get the drinks and they sat down around the table. Mac reached over and touched her hand. "I think we're pretty set on it. Starfleet...no longer feels like home for either of us."
Haru nodded. "Pretty much."
“Why now?” Alex asked, looking between them. “Haru, you’ve been doing so well with your recovery… and both of you are going to be a big loss to this crew. I just want to be sure you guys are going for the right reasons and not for something we can fix…”
Mac sighed. It was he who spoke, "We both want to have a family and I was with Soral when he was helping the evac of Romulus...Starfleet abandoned them. If Haru and I can help we will help. Plus...." He rubbed the back of his neck not wanting to say anything to her about Soral's plans.
His apparent hesitation was not lost on her. “Plus?” She prompted, fixing him with a look that promised she would force it out of him if she needed to. “Plus, what?”
Haru's eyes narrowed. "I think we should tell her."
"Well, there is something else but I don't … think it's up to me to tell you. It would influence any decisions you made about Soral and he doesn't want that."
Alex considered his response, then considered it again. “If you truly think it would influence my decision then that sounds like even more of a reason to tell me,”She pointed out. “And of me and Soral, which one of us is most themselves right now?”
He sighed. "Soral is contemplating taking up his grandfather's offer to become a Romulan Senator. We're too do some investigating on that front and lay the groundwork for it. If you reconcile then he'll stay if you divorce...then he'll be heading to Romulus."
“A Romulan Senator….” Alex repeated. “That… is different.”
"Yeah....I'm a bit worried about him," Haru put in. "He's still himself but...there is an edge."
“An understatement,” Alex sighed. “I can’t be the decider. He stays or goes; it has to be his choice.”
Mac gave Haru a look and sighed. He patted the sofa by him. "Sit, let's really talk. Forget his choice, how are you doing with being back and all that's happened?"
“I appreciate the thought Mac, but I didn’t come here to talk about me. I came to see both of you, to be here it for myself you were really leaving. And what about Bones? Is he going with you or back to Soral?” In truth she had thought the puppy would be back with him already. Then again…
Haru sighed. "Well since the … joining Bones has bitten Soral twice. He's going with us unless you wish to keep him."
Bones chose that moment to drop a ball at her feet, a picture of innocence that made her certain he knew exactly what Haru had said. Alex raised an eyebrow at him but she couldn’t be angry at him. “I don’t think I can really blame you,” she admitted as she threw the ball. After all, Bones had known from the beginning that something was wrong with Soral. Turning her attention back to Mac and Haru she shook her head, “Bones deserves better than being stuck on a starship. And I know you will look after him. He will love getting some fresh air and I imagine it may be safer than life on this ship will be.
In fact,” she added, “I have a friend for him. If you’d be willing to take another stowaway? Soral - for some reason - gave me a puppy. She’s adorable but I don’t have time to look after her properly and in a crisis, I can’t be running around making sure she is fed, watered and things. I could arrange for her to go to Vulcan but my mother and my pets have never worked out and she is … not in the best headspace either. I know it’s asking a lot but I think Bones would love being a big brother and I trust you both to take care of them. Please?”
Haru smiled. "The more the merrier." He studied her. "Alex how are you with all this."
“I’m taking comfort in the fact I’ve been in darker places than how I feel right now,” she admitted. “But that is for me to figure out and work through.”
Haru smiled, "I get that but you know that Mac and I are family. If you need us, we'll come a running." He meant it. He'd began to form a close relationship with Alex. His own sister was in the past but they too shared a past that brought them closer. As happy as he was to leave Starfleet behind, he was not happy to leave her behind.
“It is sweet of you to say but I will be fine and if this is truly what you need to do, then I support you, one hundred percent,” she assured them.
Mac looked at Alex. “Are you angry at us for leaving?”
“Of course not. I considered it myself to be honest,” Alex admitted.
Mac's eyebrows shot up. "What changed your mind?"
“I honestly don’t know,” Alex shrugged. “It felt like it would be avoiding the issues. And I worked hard to get to this point in my career to just throw it away.”
Haru gave a nod. You're right on that. Say what you want about Soral but he always said you would go all the way to Captain and be the finest in the fleet."
Alex made a face, “hopefully not.”
Haru laughed. Haru was about to say something when the call came in.
=/\= Commander Soral to Lieutenant Mackenzie. You are required in Ops.=/\=
Mac sighed. "On my way." He looked at Alex. "Well time for me to respond to the bellow."
“I should go anyway,” Alex said as she stood up, “but we will arrange dinner or something before you go, I promise. And I’ll bring by the puppy so she and Bones can get used to one another.”
Haru grinned. "Looking forward to it."
“Me too,” Alex nodded before kneeling down in front of Bones to give him a playful scratch behind his ear, “and you be good and keep these two out of trouble, okay?”
Accepting his bark as agreement, Alex grinned as she stood and gave both of her friends a wave before leaving, unable to shake the feeling that this was just the beginning of big changes not just for the ship but in her life. Maybe that would be a good thing but right now it just felt … sad.
Still she pushed the idea away as she headed to her quarters, ready to tell her pet she would soon have a new home and some new friends. And hopefully the pup hadn’t managed to cause too much chaos while she had been home alone.