Leap of Faith
Posted on Saturday, 4 March 2023 - 5:43pm by Lieutenant Alex Kingsley & Lieutenant JG William Knight
Timeline: Shore leave
The peaceful silence was shattered as two figures burst out of the tree line, racing each other to cover the short distance to the cliff edge. Against a picturesque backdrop of clear blue skies, tropical beaches and calm waters, both runners reached the point of no return at full speed - propelling themselves clear of the cliff face and towards the water below.
One. Two. Three. Four -
Alex Kingsley felt the lungful of air pushed from her lungs as she hit the water just a fraction of a second behind Knight. With a few kicks, she resurfaced, taking a second to breathe and regather her strength as she got her bearings. Knight was doing the same and she couldn’t stop herself from a childish flick of water in his direction as she began swimming towards the beach where a series of markers lined the route to the finishing line. This had not, she realised, felt like so much hard work back in the Academy.
A stronger swimmer than Knight, she made it to the beach first and wasted no time in scrambling to her feet and pushing herself to complete the last hundred meters. Her friend had a height advantage and his longer strides chewed up the distance easier than she did, but anything was possible and until they crossed the line she had to try.
This was a matter of pride.
Her muscles were burning as she all but threw herself over the finish line a mere head and shoulders ahead of Knight who tried the same tactic, in the end sending them both tumbling to the sand in a tangle of arms and legs.
“Getting slow, old man,” Alex managed between deep breaths, which wasn’t easy with a full grown man on top of her. “I win.”
“Best of three?” Knight suggested, looking less than keen on the idea.
Before Alex could answer she heard someone clear their throat and her head snapped to the side, groaning when she found T’Paris standing there in what looked like a yoga outfit. Just. Perfect.
“I reserved the holodeck for 1400 hours,” the Lieutenant informed them, her eyebrow raised in silent judgement. “It is now 1402 hours.”
“Then your patience is appreciated,” Knight retorted as he climbed to his feet and dusted off the sand. Extending a hand, he hauled Alex to her feet. “I will be sure to book more time for next time. Apologies if we interrupted your schedule…I don’t believe we’ve been introduced?”
“Lieutenant T’Paris,” the woman supplied. “You are the new engineer, Lieutenant Knight. I see you have settled in. I am sure Lieutenant Kingsley has made sure you been made to feel most welcome.”
Pulling on a hoody over her wetsuit and changing into dry trainers, Kingsley glared at T’Paris from behind Knight’s back.
“Indeed I am,” Knight replied. “Alex and I have known each other for a long time.”
“A fact you may not wish to share with our First Officer,” T’Paris advised, “for he may then question your motivation for spending time in the arms of his wife on a beach.”
“That is not what happened -“ Alex interjected, stepping forward with clear anger in her voice before Knight held up a hand to caution her.
“Understood, Lieutenant. Perhaps next time we will make sure you can observe something far more … wholesome. Enjoy your time on the holodeck.” Picking up both sports bags, he gestured for Alex to follow. Once they were out in the corridor, he fixed his friend with a questioning look.
“Long story. She had always tried to come between Soral and I. She’ll have us involved in some sordid affair by the time she speaks to him,” Alex sighed.
“Ah,” Knight replied. “Want me to program in a few holodeck malfunctions?”
Alex grinned, “tempting but no. Don’t worry about it and the last thing you need is a genuine reason for the XO to dislike you. Come on. I won so you need to go start on engraving my trophy.”
Knight groaned, “do we really need to do this?”
“Absolutely,” she grinned as she gave him a playful shove towards the turbolift, “and me and my staff will be in main engineering, as agreed, for you to present me with my prize.”
“I have a reputation to maintain. This kind of shenanigans will not help,” he sighed.
She patted him on the back, “don’t worry, you can be super grouchy the entire time and even make me pry it out of your hands if you want.”
Alex nodded, “absolutely.”