Interesting Turn of Events
Posted on Monday, 11 January 2021 - 9:53am by Commander Soral & Captain Barret Stillwater & Lieutenant Alex Kingsley
Location: USS Standing Bear | XO Quarters
Soral had just returned from Earth in a bit of a daze. His meeting with Stillwater had not gone as planned and he was...in a light state of shock. Alex had held down the fort while they were gone and she was still on duty for the next hour. Still in his dress uniform he sat down ignoring Bones' barks and pulled out something that Biacami had given him. Graple? Gripa? He wasn't sure. He needed something strong. Vulcans weren't able to get drunk of course but his Romulan half lent some mystery to it all.
Having been advised of the return of the Standing Bear’s two most senior officers, Lieutenant Kingsley remained on the bridge until her shift was at end and then remained until she was confident they were ready to depart whenever the word was given. Signing off on the latest engineering report and requisition request, she headed for the turbolift with the intention of a long bubble bath and some chocolate and some time with her husband.
“Hey Bones,” she grinned as the puppy came scrambling towards her at full speed the moment the doors opened. “Missed you too. Come on, let’s get you feed and then a walk since you are a fur ball of energy. Just give me five minutes to-“
She stopped short as her gaze fell on Soral and the bottle on the table before him. “Soral? Is that Grappa?!”
He picked up the bottle. "Thin so." The bottle had been drained. He picked up a second one that was empty. "This one randy," he said referring to saurian brandy."
“Soral! Are you... drunk?!”
"Corse no. Vulcan matalalizm is strange."
She folded her arms, arching an eyebrow. “Indeed. And you forgot half way through the first bottle that you are only half Vulcan?” She guessed.
"I am?" He looked up her, his eyes were bloodshot and his dress uniform a mess. It was missing it's rank pips...they looked to have been torn off. He'd briefly put them on but they torn them himself.
“What happened?” She asked cautiously. Why now? Even on their wedding day he had only a few polite sips of champagne as part of the toast. And now he was two bottles down.
He stood and weaved to the small desk in the corner. He pulled a PaDD and a box out. Unceremoniously he dumped them on the table. The small box contained his Commander's promotion Rank and the PaDD an clearing of his record reprimand of his record. He also pulled a box from his pocket and added to the pile, the medal he and Stillwater had gotten for heroism.
She watched in silence as he took the items out, eyes widening as she lifted the PADD and read the contents before opening the box. “I don’t understand... this is clearing your record. That’s all that has stopped you from one day having your own command - and a promotion... but why? Why are you drinking yourself into oblivion? I don’t understand...”
"And the The Karagite Order of Heroism." He motioned to the box as if it were poisoned. "Don't deserve or want." He said. Soral very rarely used contractions in his speech.
"What you need is coffee," she countered as she carefully arranged all of the items and slipped them all back in the drawer so they would not offend. "Soral, want it or not, a promotion, a medal, the clearing of your record? These are good things and you deserve good things. Why would you ever think otherwise?"
He shrugged. It had become increasingly difficult to talk. "Must be a catch. Starfleet? Always a catch."
“What is that supposed to mean?” She challenged.
"We're going to neutral zone. Test.. for me."
“Of course it isn’t,” she assured him. “Our orders are to go where they need us to go, Soral. Nobody wants to test you, you’ve proven your an excellent officer time and again.”
He hung his head in his hands. Just as then his communicator chirped. Stillwater's voice came through. Soral growled, his head was pounding. He ripped off is communicator and with a his Vulcan strength crushed it stopping the call.
"Soral!" Alex blurted out, eyes widening. Rarely had she seen him display his strength, and appear so out of control doing it. It took all her resolve not to step back. Her jaw flexed and she walked to the table, grabbing the empty bottles and being none too quiet as she recycled them and ordered strong black coffee. Hopefully his metabolism would mean the alcohol would leave his system quickly. "Drink this, then you are getting a cold shower," she told him as she took one of his hands and placed the coffee cup in his grasp.
"Alright," The fight seemed taken out of him. His hands shook as he sipped the coffee.
Seeing him seem to instantly back down, lose some of that anger and tension, she frowned as she studied him. "Do you want to talk about whatever is troubling you?" she offered quietly.
He gave a nod.
Taking his free hand she guided him to the couch, gently tugging on his arm so he would sit down beside her. She was reminded of Adriana's advice, that she should get Soral drunk. Yet seeing it was just evidence that her initial reaction to that notion was correct. Absolutely not a good idea.
"Talk to me," she said softly, almost pleading as she cupped the side of his face and made him look at her, "this is just us. Nothing leaves this room, I promise."
Captain Stillwater was carrying a PaDD with him as he tracked down the Executive Officer of the Standing Bear, fortunately an easy task aboard a small starship and internal sensors. All he wanted to do was have a quick chat with the man, but a technical incident had caused comms to go down. Fortunately, the ship wide universal translator was rerouted throughout a secondary relay.
He arrived at Soral's quarters and pressed the door chime, stepping back a bit as he waited. He skimmed through the data on the PaDD to make sure everything was in order.
Rather than Soral’s voice it was his wife who responded. “Come in!” She called out as she stood and turned to face the door. She had made an educated guess as to who would be stopping by, given he had tried to call before Soral destroyed his comm badge. “Sir, please, come in,” she told him as she deftly intercepted Bones on his way to investigate the new arrival. “No, Bones...”
Deciding food would distract him she headed for the kitchenette before she stepped back two steps to study Stillwater. Something was different and a heartbeat later she smiled, “four pips look good on you, Captain. Congratulations.”
"Thank you, Lieutenant Kingsley," replied Stillwater. "They apparently felt Soral and I deserved more weight on our collars to pair with the added weight of responsibility resting upon our shoulders."
Soral had renewed his efforts spying a second bottle of Adrianna's brew. He quietly opened it.
"Careful Commander," Stillwater cautioned in a joking tone. "Last pour I had from a bottle damn well near killed me."
Soral looked up. He'd already consumed a bottle and a bottle of brandy. "Vulkinines ...Vulk...My people don't get drunk." He slurred. He walked over to the captain. He looked from Alex to Stillwater. Surprising both he threw is arms around both of them. "You two are great."
Not for the first time he had left her speechless. He was going to hate himself when he sobered up. “Soral, you are great too but like it or not you are drunk...”
"Nonsense." He kissed her. "I am well." He turned to the Captain. He let go of both of them. "You...." He said waiving a finger at the CO. "You I wasn't sure about. But...Your a good man."
Stillwater smirked as he observed his intoxicated First Officer which was amusing. "Thank you," replied Barret. "Your wife is correct though. I'm afraid your Romulan is showing," added Stillwater leaning forward and whispering near Soral's ear.
"Just a little." He turned and cupped Stillwater's face. Turning to Alex he said. "Look at this face. Don't you agree....Good man."
Captain Stillwater looked over at Alex. "The one nice thing about him like this is that I can kick his Vulcan ass at Kal-toh" teased the Captain.
“Bones could probably win,” Alex groaned before fixing her husband with a pleading look. “Soral...”
Soral, still holding his Captain's face. "You deserve a better XO. One that believes that the Federation can reach its glory days." Suddenly his eyes filled with tears. "I don't deserve to be here."
The word ‘ridiculous’ could be distinctly heard as Alex rolled her eyes. Of course her husband would not be a happy drunk. Maybe Stillwater could set him straight - she had clearly failed and her last resort would be to literally try and slap some sense into him.
"Don't go crying about Romulan heritage now," Stillwater replied. "You are exactly the person for the job and exactly who I need. Lieutenant Commander Victrix was thoroughly impressed with you and I have longer to get to know you than she did. I concur with her assessment."
Soral sniffed. He turned to Alex. "See! He's a good man." He turned back to his captain and lightly tapped his cheeks before cupping them. "You are a beautiful soul." He planted a quick kiss on is Captain's lips and turned slinging his arm around him. "We have a good captain."
Not exactly what Stillwater had expected in response, but the man was clearly intoxicated. "Probably best I don't tell Talarn about this," he replied with a shaking of his head. "You should get yourself some raktajino, Commander, and maybe save any more of that Baciami hooch for another night."
“Captain I am so sorry,” Alex offered by way of apology. This could not get worse... “Soral, please, sit down and drink the coffee...”
Soral suddenly straightened. "Oh No...."
“Oh no what?” Alex questioned.
"I think I swallowed something living...it's trying to come out." He hurried into the bathroom and proceeded to bring up all that he'd drunk.
Left behind Alex glanced up at Stillwater and offered a small smile, “he’s going to be as embarrassed as hell when he sobers up...”
"Can't be any more embarassing than Comedy Night," replied Stillwater of a time before he was Captain of the Standing Bear. "Victrix had mentioned it in passing, rough night for Soral."
“I would advise against mentioning that particular incident, it is a sore subject not just for him but most of the Vulcans aboard,” Alex confided. “I should replicate some more coffee. What exactly happened, on Earth? He showed me the medal, the details of his promotion and that his record was cleared but he seems entirely miserable about it all...”
"I don't know why he's miserable," replied Stillwater. "I just chalked it up to being Vulcan, annoying stoic Vulcan." Stillwater chuckled. "They expunged the incident from his record and provisionally promoted him to Commander though he had classes to take and exams to complete for the rank to become permanent. I was tasked to oversee his education."
“Good luck with that,” Alex sighed. “Perhaps start with how to sober up... or is that a wife’s duty?”
"Personnel problems especially those of officers would typically fall in the hands of Soral and yourself," he stated. "Given it is Soral, I would say I'm going to let my Second Officer handle it."
"Uh huh," the science officer nodded, "I had a feeling you were going to say that..."
"I'll leave you to sobering him up. I don't think my being here would be a good idea once he's sobered enough to remember. I shall avoid causing him any more embarrassment."
Instead of arguing, she flashed him a grateful smile. "Thank you," she conceded, knowing he was right. Vulcan's had incredible memories, so it was unlikely alcohol would make her husband forget what he had done. "Just in case, would you mind taking that second bottle of grappa with you and hiding it somewhere he wont find it for a few days, or months?"
"I promise you that he will never find it," Stillwater replied on his way out.