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Part 1: Dressed Down for Dinner

Posted on Wednesday, 14 April 2021 - 6:04pm by Lieutenant Haru Hernandez & Lieutenant Talarn Zilth

Mission: Operation: Peace or P'Jem
Location: Tactical Office | Brig Area | USS Standing Bear
Timeline: 2394 - After the Shuttle left


He'd taken a day to recoup and now that Mac was gone on this shuttle trip, it left Haru there alone. He'd gotten ready for work and things had gone well. His head was still aching but he got through his shift. At almost the end of his brig duty and tactical reports he heard the door to the small brig area open. He turned his hover chair and saluted with his hands. "Sir." He was still trying get a proper read on Zilth. He liked him, but he still was trying to find a language that was between professional and friendly.

The Cardassian Ex-Borg eyed Haru and looked around the room. “Hernandez,” he said in way of a greeting and nodded. “How was your day?” Talarn went to the first holding cell and started tapping at the console. He turned the force field off, stepped into the cell and started to look around. “Your shift is over soon, yes?”

"Yes, Sir. It was quiet. I did manage to complete several reports." He was surprised at the friendly tone. "How was your day?"

Talarn was carefully running one hand over the edges of the cell. Something he was doing was causing him to make a soft clicking. In the silence of the room, it was loud and had only started once he started looking at the cell. He shrugged. “It was much like the others.” He looked over at Haru, the clicking stopped. “I meant to ask you... what sort of combat do you have? I know the Academy made you take one...”

"I have well versed in Vulcan self defence, as well as Klingon and Romulan techniques... although... this." He motioned to his hover chair and his legs still useless. "Is an impediment."

Talarn started clicking again and went back to what he was doing. “Why is that an impediment?” he asked, simply.

"It's a chair, Sir. My legs don't work and despite what the doctors say... I doubt that they ever will."

Talarn stopped clicking and glanced at Haru before leaving the cell and moving on to the next one. “Put up the force field for cell one on from your console, please...” He tapped the console for cell two and dropped its force field. “Why is the chair an impediment?”

Hare did as he was asked. His hands moved across the panel bringing up the forcefield. It sizzled and then activated. "Active, Sir." He sighed. "How can I fight if I am confined to this? I am not the man I was."

“Mmm...” Talarn made a noise that if Haru was Barret he would know that something was on his mind and he was going to probably say that something to you soon. He started clicking again and running his hand over the inside of the cell. “How does the chair change who you are?”

He sighed. "Well, I can't go without it. I'm not as strong or able to do what I used to do."

Talarn looked over at him. “Adapt.” He stopped clicking and continued to look at Haru, the light over a panel that was embedded in his forehead, blinked slowly. He flexed the more Borg hand. “Is there anything wrong with your hands?”

"No, of course not... it's just... I'm not used to feeling like a burden to Mac."

Talarn continued to stare at him, his face passive. “Are you? A burden?”

"I feel like I am,” he said. “He's different towards me. He has to do more for me... and I see how sad he is all the time." Then something washed over him. He swore he felt like Talarn was about to do something. He heard warning bells. He tensed a little trying to anticipate. He began to study the smallest movement.

“Maybe he’s sad because you’re sad. Very sad.” He shook his head and snorted. “You better get your shit in one sock, Son...” He stopped for a moment. He was about to lay some truth on this boy and it might hurt. He took a deep breath and let it out slowly, waffling.

Haru looked at Talarn. He looked up to the relationship that Talarn and Stillwater had. They were where he wanted to be with Mac.

Talarn crossed his arms over his chest. “I hear a lot excuses and to me? Seriously? Look at me! Do you know how much of me doesn’t work? Stop whining and have a little gratitude for being alive because anytime you’re not under the dirt is a good day. So, what if there’s a chair. Why does that change anything? It shouldn’t... what does Mac say about it?”

He sighed. "He says it doesn't matter and that I'll get better and if not, we'll adapt." Which was pretty much the advice Talarn had given.

“And you don’t believe him? Do you just not trust him?” His tone was still calm and even.

"I do trust him with my life." He shrugged. "He is my life."

“Then why do you speak of him poorly? He says you are not a burden to him, yet you say you are. Why would you sully his good word to others? Do you love him?” He hadn’t moved from the spot he had stopped on.

"Of course, I do. More then myself."

He slowed his speech in case Haru was not hearing him. “Then why do you say you are? If he says you are not then you aren’t... simple. Until you get that through your head...” He took another breath and shook his head. “You can’t do that to him, Haru. You’re going to have to adapt and be glad for what you do have.”

Haru sighed. He hung his head. He knew that what the Cardassian said was true. He'd been told this over and over, but this time it was starting to sink in.

Talarn started to click again. He could tell that the Lieutenant had heard him. “You don’t have to let any of that happen, but you have to decide if you are the man, you say you are or if you become the chair. I can teach you how to fight. Chair or no chair, but if you have no fight then there’s nothing anyone can do.”

He gave a nod. "Perhaps it is time that I see what I can do in this state, if I can overcome it."

Talarn stepped out of cell two. “You can close this one too now...” He moved to the third and last cell. “What are you going to do?” He paused for a moment. “I think you should start with the attitude.” The last statement sounded like an instructor that might be ready to send Haru to the principal.

"The hardest place to start, perhaps. I have been off spiritually and I think that is the place to start."

Talarn sighed and dropped the force field on cell three. “Please, close cell two...” He wasn’t a spiritual person. He couldn’t say to what people should do when it came to those matters. He had felt like they had been getting somewhere and then religion was added. He waited.

Haru closed the second brig and watched as Zilith as he prowled the third cell. "Sir, what are you looking for?" He'd checked the cells at the start of his shift.

Talarn snorted and smirked a little. “Each of these cells is lined with an alloy, thicker around the doors. It cracks... over time and expansion and contraction... it can weaken the force field. I can see the fractures in the alloy and feel where the force field is weakest...”

"Any weakness so far?"

“Yes... but only in this one. I’ll send a request for an engineer to come fix it. I don’t see any others though.”

Haru gave a nod. "I can put in the call if you like." Gods knew that he didn't want to be alone and with Mac on the shuttle he was worried about him.

“I’ve got it. I know where it is. Mac is with the shuttle crew, yes?” Talarn asked, stepping out of three cell. “Leave the force field down on this one until it’s fixed, please.”

"Yes, Sir. They just left."

“Mmm...” Talarn said. “Then you can join me for dinner.”

To Be Continued...


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