Posted on Saturday, 31 October 2020 - 4:40pm by Lieutenant Alex Kingsley & Commander Soral
Location: Jupiter Station
With one maternity uniform dropped off, Lieutenant Kingsley decided now was as good a time as any for the impromptu shopping trip. Officially off duty for the day she was at a bit of a loose end anyway until Soral was free. And so, hoping she managed to pick outfits T’Lanna would like, she headed to Jupiter Station.
The store directory was not too extensive and there was one store which proclaimed it ‘catered to all mother and baby needs’. Perfect.
Nestled in a quiet corner, Tiny Feet was easy to find and far bigger inside than it first appeared. Perhaps someone on the station had been playing around with temporal mechanics trying to recreate the TARDIS. On this station it was entirely possible (not to mention entirely amazing). Inside, the store was bright, spacious and truly seemed to have way too many things. Fortunately, this included an overly helpful assistant who spent half an hour helping her pick out toys, baby clothes and outfits for T'Lanna herself.
Despite her insistence, Alex intended them as a gift and had zero intention of billing them to her friend. By the time she left she had three bags before she made it to chocolatier.
Soral had been walking about the station. He'd had a conference and then a break, he'd visited with Mac who was in the medical ward tending to Haru and now he had a break before an XO meeting. He'd spied Alex and had followed her. He stopped short when he'd seen the store that she'd gone into. Tiny Feet.
He'd, in a cowardly fashion, snuck up to the window and had seen his wife shopping up a storm. Toys...he'd almost convinced himself that those were for his kids but the maternity clothing? A spark of realization dawned on him. He'd hidden back and when she came out, bags in hand, he followed her still. Surly there was a logical explanation of things...and not the one he was thinking of.
Following the route the sales assistant had given her, Alex made her way to Charlotte’s. The woman in the store had sworn it was the finest chocolate in the sector and while it may have been an exaggeration, it was worth a shot. Slipping inside she breathed in the rich smells which welcomed her. Would it be too much to resign from Starfleet and just live in this exact spot? Maybe. But only just.
Not entirely sure what T’Lanna would like, she bought an assortment. Whichever one she liked best, Alex would be able to get her more. Purchase made and another bag in hand, she headed back out. She was, by this point, starving and the food court beckoned. Or she could just eat back on the ship she supposed. While deliberating she walked on before suddenly stopping and turning around, her eyes fixing on the unmistakable form of her husband a few meters behind her.
“Soral, are you following me?”
"I'm a XO in Starfleet, I do not follow people," He said somewhat defensively. His eyes rested on the chocolate. "That is a lot of chocolate." Human females had cravings in the early stages of pregnancy. His mind then went to something he recalled. Vulcans and humans could not conceive without help but...she was half El Aurian and their DNA was compatible with Vulcan and Romulan DNA. He raised an eyebrow. Why had he not paid more attention to biology?
“Soral!” She replied in mock horror. “You can never have enough chocolate! And if you weren’t following me, why were you not following me? Don’t you want to follow me anymore?”
"I..." He paused, "That is not what I said. Of course I wish to follow you...in a normal non crazy way.....I mean that is..." He studied her. "You are pale. Why are you pale."
“I didn’t get a good sleep last night, but thanks for the compliment,” she told him with a hint of amusement before throwing out a question of her own. “Is something wrong? You seem a little... out of sorts. In a completely non crazy way of course.”
Lack of sleep was a sign of pregnancy. "Are you....hungry?"
“Actually I was just heading to the food court, do you have time to join me?” She asked hopefully. It seemed they rarely had time together.
He considered that a moment. He should be heading to the XO meeting but...he had to find out for sure. What if she wanted to tell him...was it possible? "Food." He simply said. He took the bags from her. "You should not be carrying so much." If she was pregnant this was not good for the baby...Their baby. He allowed his mind to wander a little. What would she be like, he wondered.
“Okay...” she said slowly, beginning to worry about him as he took the bags from her. She was sure he could tell for himself that they weren’t heavy. Taking his arm she nodded in the direction of the food court, “food. Are you sure you have time? How was your conference?”
"Long but productive." His mind worked. He was going to be a father again. He could feel the bags were not that heavy but he was dying to get a look at what was inside. Did she knew the gender? How far along was she? He had so many questions. "I will ensure I make time." He wanted to be there for her and their child. "Are you sure you should be walking? Perhaps I can carry you?" Did pregnant women walk? That's was stupid - of course they walked but was she okay with everything she went through?
By this time they had reached the food court. “Sure I should be walking?” she repeated, thoroughly confused as she slid into a booth. “Why would I need you to carry me?”
Before he could explain, a waitress came over to give them both a holographic menu and take a drink order. Promising to be back in a few minutes, she moved away. “Soral, what’s wrong? Is it Haru? Is there any more news?”
"No. He's still in a coma. Mac is...not moving from his side. I half expect the nurses to revolt and toss him out." He studied her. "Nothing is wrong. I just want to ensure you are well."
She frowned, taking his hand. “You have to stop worrying, Soral. I’ll admit I have a headache now and then but otherwise I’m fine. Can you order me anything pasta related? I’ll be right back.”
Standing she kissed him before heading towards the bathrooms.
"Alright." He watched her go and then ordered. He sat back and studied her empty chair. "She is tired, pale, I saw her rubbing her back. Now she has a headache, visited a maternity store and has cravings...." There was no other logical explanation. Still....He reached into the bag and pulled out a small toy. He raised an eyebrow. The blue clothing...a boy. They were having a boy. A sudden wave of worry about the child's health seized him and then he replaced the toy. It didn't matter. He they would welcome a child soon. A warmth and excitement washed over him. His mouth pulled into a Vulcan grin.
When she returned the waitress was already setting out the starters. “Garlic bread should be it’s own food group,” she declared as she took a bite. Taking a drink of water she set the glass down slowly. “I stopped by to check on T’Lanna. She mentioned Severine’s been calling you a lot. Is she alright?”
Her voice snapped him out of her thoughts. "Indeed. She has been sending me messages every hour...to ensure that I am well." He sighed. "Perhaps it would not be so if I was there for her when she was younger. She has thus far grown up without a father and lost her mother. It is difficult." He looked at Alexandra. "I wish I had known about them. I would have been a better father." A thought struck him. What if Alex didn't want to tell him about the baby because she doubted his abilities. "Alexandra I promise you that will never happen again. I will be there for Severine and Soval and our son."
At his last sentence she had been taking another drink and almost choked. “Son?” She repeated when she had finished coughing and spluttering. “What?!”
"I...was following you." He admitted. "I saw you enter the store that is designated for women who are pregnant. I...looked inside." He admitted pointing to the bag. "I know you are reluctant to tell me of the child but I can assure you my joy at knowing we will have a child soon is...greater then I have ever known. He will be loved no less and no more then Severine and Soval but he will be loved." He paused but a second. "I know that it will be difficult and children are not allowed on our ship. I shall resign and care for the child. You must follow your career."
Several times she opened her mouth say something yet no words actually came out. She was stunned. He thought she was pregnant. Was happy about but his answer was... to resign?!
She shook her head, which helped actually. “Soral... For one thing, resigning? No. For another, I am sorry to disappoint you but I’m not pregnant. At least not that I know of. I was buying things for T’Lanna, not me. You thought...? Do I look...?” As if answering her own question she pushed the plate away.
His eyes widened. "Well....no. You were complaining of back pain earlier and you are pale and cannot sleep well. Added to your shopping trip it was only logical...You are not pregnant?"
She felt so bad as she shook her head, “no, I’m not. I’m sorry.”
"Oh." He knew it was impossible but part of him had hoped. It was this day that he learned what disappointment felt like. "There is no need to apologize. I simply jumped to conclusions." He reached out and took her hand. "Alexandra you look beautiful. In time, when we are both ready, we will have a child." He pushed the plate towards her. "Let us finish our meal and I shall walk you back to the ship. T'Lanna will want those."
She nodded, taking a bite but realising her appetite was gone. He looked so... Sad.
She’d have to fix that. Somehow.