The Wedding Planners
Posted on Saturday, 24 June 2023 - 6:06pm by Captain Pippa Whitley & Lieutenant T'Lanna Vali & Lieutenant K'Var & Lieutenant JG Adrianna Eberhardt & Lieutenant Tazuko Miyahara & Lieutenant JG Jarin Alexander MD & Lieutenant JG Ethan Connelly
Operation: Lobes & Liberties
Luria as beautiful Pippa remembered it being, at least the parts of it that the Royal Family had provided strict coordinates to 'fly over' at low altitude. The areas populated by tourists, the harbors along the shore which had their own charm to them, the capital district, and of course no buildings on the planet stood as wide nor tall as the Lurian Palace, home of the Royal Family and having survived a long history of sieges and uprisings over the many centuries. Pointed arches, ribbed vaults, stained glass windows, extremely high vaulted ceilings, and an abundance of pointed arches and spires that from the ground undoubtedly looked as though they pierced the heavens.
The auxiliary craft from the Standing Bear had landed within the castle's grounds, a courtyard of sorts with a landing pad for the arrival of dignitaries from prestigious worlds. It was an honor to be able to receive clearance to land there, and Pippa had ensured that everyone was prepared for what was about to happen as they touched down and powered down the engines. Captain Whitley was dressed in their dress uniform as were the other members of the Captain's entourage.
"We need to be on our best behavior," Whitley prefaced. "This isn't some chatty Lurian that sits at a bar for twelve hours straight, filling his stomachs with bottom-shelf liquor" stated the captain. The irony in that statement was that the Lurian they were referencing had been one of the individuals responsible for the Lissepian Mother's Day Heist, some of the Lurian Royal Family's latinum and jewelry had been stolen that day. "Once I drop the hatch, we are going to be greeted by the Captain of the Royal Guard and about a dozen of their best. We will be taken through the castle and likely be taken to the Throne Room" explained Whitley.
Taking a moment to ensure the shuttle systems were powered down and secure, Lieutenant Connelly turned in his chair as he adjusted the colour on his dress uniform. It had been quite some time since he had to wear one, and it was as uncomfortable as he recalled. “Understood,” he replied with a simple nod. The instruction to behave did not seem entirely necessary but was by no means unexpected. Any commanding officer would want to avoid a diplomatic incident.
"Spoil sport," Adrianna muttered as she ran her finger round her collar, "I need at least three drinks to make this dress uniform feel comfortable."
"I don't see the problem, Lieutenant." Tazuko shrugged. "Though I do tend to keep my duty uniform starched and ironed all the time, so a dress uniform given the same treatment isn't any less comfortable for me."
"You needn't worry," Whitley replied. "As I said in the meeting these people party and party hard. If you find a Lurian with a blood alcohol content level underneath a 3.0, I'd be surprised. They will offer us a lot of alcohol and a lot of food. Try your best not to decline it."
“We wouldn’t wish to offend,” Connelly assured her.
Pippa nodded. "I'm sure we will be fine. The Royal Family is going to control the conversation. I expect it will be politics and pushing their son towards this marriage arrangement. T'Lanna, I want you to dig deeper than that. You are likely to pick up on thoughts and feelings that may not be openly shared."
"I knew being Italian would come in hand one day," Adrianna chuckled.
T’Lanna nodded. “Understood Captain, I’ll do my best to catch any stray thoughts without causing an incident.”
"Appreciated," Pippa replied. "It's the crown prince that I'm most intrigued about. This marriage would help the Lurians and Ferengi significantly. I'm not a fan of arrangements made by parents, but it is relatively normal with the Royal Family yet he clearly has cold feet."
K’Var was paying attention to the Captain but taking their surroundings in as well. She was on alert there were a lot of people here and she wanted to make sure the Captain and other crew were safe.
T’Lanna nodded. “Is it possible our prince is in love with another? That would be one reason for him to have cold feet.”
“Or he could just be enjoying the single life,” Connelly pointed out as he tugged on the sleeve of his dress uniform, “marriage is quite a commitment in most cultures. He may simply feel unprepared to ‘settle down’ as they say.”
T’Lanna nodded. “That’s very possible, arranged marriages don’t tend to involve love either. I’m glad my parents didn’t choose that option for me, as it’s part of both Vulcan and Betazoid tradition.”
“My own family also chose not to adhere to that side of our heritage, much to my grandmother’s disdain,” Ethan confided.
"Some arranged marriages do involve love, but because of the forceful nature of the concept of arranged marriages, it makes you feel like you want to rebel. Makes you feel all the emotions," Adrianna seemed reminiscent for a moment, "the debate between love and power is always a hard one."
“A subject worthy of further discussion,” Ethan concluded. “But another time.”
The half-Efrosian Captain scoffed and smirked. "A worthy subject for anytime, Lieutenant. Perhaps no better time than now, but let's hold off on directly discussing it in front of the royal family. It is not exactly the dinner conversation I'm looking to have" quipped Captain Whitley. "Nevertheless, let's try to remember these people are from a very different culture than our own and even within that cultural difference, these aren't your everyday Lurians. There's an importance that comes with being part of the ruling class."
Now it was time to find out how this would go.