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The Key to a Good Christmas

Posted on Sunday, 3 January 2021 - 4:27pm by Lieutenant JG Adrianna Eberhardt & Crewman Leopold Eberhardt

Mission: Operation: Ouroboros

It had been ridiculously busy and between being in the brig and sifting through mountains of data, today was one day she was looking forward to. Somehow she had managed to prepare a small three course Christmas dinner and decorated her quarters. She'd placed a few gifts for Leopold under the tree and in her family tradition, had hung mistletoe on the ceiling of the kitchen. It was a strange tradition but Adrianna’s grandfather and father always said it was because the matriarch deserved the most love and that it added to the taste of the food.

The Italian was in a nice crimson dress and heels as if going out on a date and even donned snowflake earrings. She was going to enjoy her first Christmas with Leopold.

Leopold whistled when he walked in to find Adrianna dressed in the crimson red dress and heels. The snowflake earnings were a nice added touch. "Now that is something I want to unwrap," he said with a chuckle. "How is my former jailbird today?"

Adrianna did a little spin, "perhaps for dessert." She stepped over and teased, "Oh, you know, missing the prison food and lovely neighbours." She then kissed him, "merry Christmas."

"Fröhliche Weihnachten," he replied. "In some places they serve what is considered dessert between meals. I quite like those cultures given my sweet tooth and such," he added before returning the kiss. "I'm sure you made excellent prison friends and your families boozey roots undoubtedly paid off in the form of quality pruno."

Adrianna smirked a little before stuttering a vaguely well pronounced, "Lass uns zusammen essen- let's eat?"

"Ooo very good," Leopold replied. "You have been practicing for me?" he asked though whatever her reasoning was, he certainly found it attractive that she was learning a tongue he knew fairly well. He smiled at her. "This was a good surprise. You are good at keeping secrets perhaps that is why you are good at your position on the starship."

"I've been learning," she replied with a smile. She thought it would be a good idea, especially if it ever came to pass that she needed it, "my native tongue didn't have as harsh sounds, so it's difficult. I do like your word for nurse though." Adrianna was unsure about his last comment so pressed a little, "you make it sound like I'm keeping something from you in a not good way."

Leopold shook his head. "No, I did not mean to accuse you like that. I was trying to compliment you, but I also realize that your family is often involved in things that are not safe. I know that given your security clearance, you are privy to comm chatter and transmissions that pertain to mission information. Things that the Captain and his First Officer receive and determine how much the crew get to know," explained Leopold. "I do not envy you nor your position aboard the starship."

Adrianna kissed his cheek, "this isn't you asking me if I'll send a Christmas message to your home world is it?" Adrianna started dishing up food for them both.

"No, no. I would never ask you for any personal favors like that, not at the risk of your position aboard," Leopold replied. "I just meant that you are going to know more or less where the starship is going, the potential dangers of an area, the political situations and cultural delicacies of the worlds we may visit well before the rest of the crew. That is going to be a lot of weight on your shoulders yet you are very good at not showing concern or fear. Even when the Federation may be falling apart, you look as angelic as ever."

" You know I would though, " she handed him a place of food," as for hiding it well, I'm glad you think so. It's come to my attention that the cracks are showing, so to speak." Adrianna sat down next to Leopold.

"Italians do not crack," he replied with a smirk. "They age with more wisdom and beauty. They simply become too full of this wisdom and beauty and it starts to show through in various ways, maybe they weather a bit, but crack? Nah, they do not crack," he added. "You are handling everything a lot better than most people, even myself, and I do not even come from a Federation world."

Adrianna blushed a little. He was sweet and comforting. She then clicked onto something, "Oh my gawd," Adrianna teased, "you fell in love with my mother."

"Yes, the Italian cougar was very endearing," replied Leopold nodding. "Though she is a Baciami. That life...I do not like it, but I love you. It is too dangerous and the things your father and idiot brother get involved in. Why cannot the cougar mom come here. The Captain likes you otherwise he would not let you run the Intelligence department. Maybe you could ask him and she can live aboard the Standing Bear and make me mimosas."

"Someone has to be the peace in a house of chaos," Adrianna simply replied, "it's not just me. I'd gladly kidnap her. But I have neices and nephews. They need their grandmother. Like I needed her, they will too. Plus, I don't want you getting ideas. It's bad enough you've told her you're planning on proposing, though she thinks we're already engaged with how you phrased it." Adrianna grinned.

"You will be my wife, this is not unseen," he replied as he ate. "You are nice, you make me food, you have introduced me to your family. I do not need to work in intelligence to know. You want me as your husband and so you shall have me as your husband."

Adrianna looked confused, "if that's a proposal, then you don't know me well enough." She smiled, "I was born on the Earth day that is called 'valentines day'. I believe it makes my true self an old romantic - secretly though. You know, I do t want many to know I'm secretly girly and soppy." She sipped some wine.

"That was...promise, not proposal. When I do propose, you will know." He laughed at her description of being girly and soppy. "Yes, because galatic image of girly and soppy is a woman who knows one hundred and one ways to murder you and make it look like an entire accident."

"One hundred and two, thank you," she darkly teased with a chuckled. She looked back to his eyes a moment, "you really see a future with me? Not just scared I'll make it 103 ways to perform a lethal accident if you break my heart?"

"Teach me one of these 102 or so ways of yours. I will use on your idiot brother and become cougar's favorite son. We will take over the family business together and run the empire as wife and husband. I do not worry about breaking your heart, it is mine to protect, not destroy."

"Gawd that's the best proposal I've had in years," Adrianna grinned. She couldn't held but let it fade to a contented smile. This was happiness. She'd felt a little lost lately, but somehow Leopold pulled her back.

"Oh?" replied Leopold. "Best proposal in years? You have had other proposals?" He teased and smirked. "What happened? They opened the door at the end of the hall that was off limits and you had to use 102 ways?"

"Now that would be telling," she smirked, "no, I've been in love twice. Three, including yourself. One, as it turns out was also I love with four others and I decided that I didn't want to be wife number 5 and share. I don't share well. He proposed, before introducing me to his wives, by asking me to join his family to complete it." She paused looking a little wistful, "The other chose his career over myself. He didn't even tell me. Just left me for almost dead. It almost caused this," she gestured to the room, signifying Starfleet, "to not happen. I barely made it out of Italy alive and into Starfleet care. He proposed by saying something like 'let's run away together, to somewhere safe'." She looked to Leopold, "love hurts, but you seem to have got it as an art."

"I have never been too good at making things work back home," Leopold replied. "None of the women that I have met there have been anything like you. I do not understand why anyone would choose their career Starfleet or otherwise over you." To Leopold it simply was not ever worth considering.

Adrianna smiled, clicking out of the tainted nostalgia," I guess we'll never know." She tucked a stray lock of hair behind her ear. Adrianna looked to the tree," I got you a gift by the way, and a back up just in case."

"I do not think your mother would live very long wrapped underneath a tree," he replied. "So, I suspect it is not her. Whatever you have got me will be cherished. I am not picky as it comes from you."

Adrianna chuckled, "I don't think my mother would fit in a small box. I mean it's like, hand sized. That may be finger sized I suppose. Mother jigsaw."

Like a kid in a candy shop, Leopold darted over to the tree and picked up the small box. "May I open it, or do I need to wait longer?" asked Leopold.

"Open it, it is Christmas," she chuckled. The woman had bought him an old Earth door key. She hoped he'd get the hint.

He found the key when he opened the package. "Ah, I knew it," he quipped. "The key to all the doors, you trust me, but I am not to open the one door at the end of the hall. It is the one with all your deceased lovers."

"Not all of them, just a few. It's a good momento," she teased before answering honestly, blushing a little, "I know that socially, it should be a guy that asks, but you've got a proposal in the works. I however, am asking, using the key as a metaphor, if you'll move in."

"You are a department head. They gave you the same quarters that an officer would have aboard. You live alone," he said nodding. "Yes! I much rather live here with you than my quarters shared with Crewmen Phillips. He comes out of the sonic shower naked and walks around. I would prefer not having to see that much of him."

Adrianna was silent a moment, obviously thinking about that image. She shuddered. Nope. Adrianna then looked back to Leopold," I'm afraid that I sometimes do that." She grinned then asked," so yes! You're my new roomie! "

"Yes, I will be your roomie." Leopold chuckled. "I much rather see your natural beauty than his junk hanging out in the morning as he drinks a glass of juice."

"Gawd, stop," she shuddered more in disgust, "I would like to keep my dinner down." She gestured to her room, "I've already made room for your stuff. I don't have much, myself."

Leopold laughed. "Yes, I know. Nothing more unsettling that a small bratwurst hanging out while you are trying to enjoy your breakfast, but Crewman Phillips does not care."

Adrianna looked childishly disgusted and quickly got up and kissed him to shut him up, "please, enough. The only man I care about is you, and you are here not Phillips and I would like to welcome you home."


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