Returning Home - Part I
Posted on Thursday, 19 May 2022 - 8:11pm by Commander Soral & Lieutenant Alex Kingsley
Edited on on Friday, 20 May 2022 - 12:20pm
Location: Soral’s estate, Vulcan
Emerging from the shuttle which had brought her directly to the sprawling estate now known to be home of Shar of Vulcan himself, Laura Kingsley had been welcomed by three familiar faces who had been waiting eagerly for her return. With more emotion than they would show outside of their home, both boys had rushed to greet her before insisting that they help carry her bags inside. While their sister remained more stoic and disciplined, Laura noted it did not last when all three sat down to open the gifts she had brought home.
Now she was seated in the garden, sipping from an iced tea while the children had lessons, her pen poised as she considered what to write. Hearing footsteps she looked back over her shoulder, standing when she saw Soral. “Are you well?” She asked with an undeniably motherly tone while gesturing for him to join her in the shade.
Soral had checked on the children and his staff and now had gone towards the back area finding his mother-in-law. He gave a nod and walked over. "I am recovering," his stay at the monastery and the Vashar debrief had been long and brutal. He sat down across Laura. "How have you been keeping?"
“Oh, you know me, I am always alright. The recommendation you gave for the resort was wonderful, perhaps too good. I had to remind myself that I am not twenty-one anymore although I am still a karaoke queen. I missed seeing the children every day of course. But at the same time, I feel better having been with Alex.”
There was a small pause. He was glad that she had fun and that she was able to rest. She has been a wonder with the children and he felt lucky to have her in his life and theirs. "How is Alexandra?" He asked while staring off into the distance.
“Honestly?” Laura said after taking her seat again and savoring another sip of ice tea as she considered her answer. It was not an easy question to answer. “I really don’t know. She seems… restless. She thinks I don’t notice but I know she barely sleeps, and sometimes she seems a million miles away. But she has gone to every mandated appointment and debriefing, those infuriated her. Said they were mostly about casting - and I quote - ‘Soral as the villain’.”
Laura sighed, shaking her head. “If I had to guess,” she mused, “I would say she feels a little lost. I don’t know why she was so determined to leave Vulcan, or reluctant to see pretty much anyone - but I am glad you are both meeting on Risa. I think it will do some good. For both of you.”
"Indeed. It has been trying for her. I wish I could have made it easier...my shadow self, or mirror self, rather, was not an easy personality to deal with."
“Please sit,” Laura urged, “have some tea.”
He seated himself closer watching as she poured the tea. It was a quiet ritual, one that he liked very much. It calmed him. He wondered briefly what it would have been like to grow up with her as his mother and then was glad that his children at least had that.
Once he was settled, she studied him, several times opening her mouth to say something and then reconsidering her words. “You have a good heart, Soral. Which, yes, is possibly an insult to most Vulcans but not to you. I have seen you broken, when you faced losing your bond with Alex, saw your happiness on your wedding day… I think of you as my son. It pains me to see either of you hurting like you do.”
She paused, lost in a train of thought before remembering she had more to say. “I wish I could wave a magic wand, like in the fairy tales I used to tell her - of course I didn’t do that quite as well as her father did… but I can’t. I know she has been looking for some space, some time. But whenever I told her there was a message - from you, or the children, I saw how … happy she was. Relieved even. And then she would look so sad but wouldn’t tell me why. And of course, she wanted peace and quiet and kept telling me to come back here. Perhaps my singing isn’t quite as good as I recall.”
His lip twitched. "I believe that the Ambassador quite likes your singing."
She laughed aloud at that, “yes, but who can resist ABBA?”
He suppressed a grin and then sighed. "She carries the weight of the world on her shoulders. She puts blame where there is none and I wish I knew how to help her."
“Be there,” Laura said simply. “Don’t let her push you away. Quite simply? Just be you.”
He raised an eyebrow. "Perhaps that may irritate her more. I hear that my counterpart was...more turned to his Romulan side. He had a romantic streak. I have wondered if we will be able to return to what it was...especially with the bond being broken again."
Laura offered him a reassuring smile, “I can’t say what happened for she wouldn’t tell me… but Soral, remember this. There was no bond when you first meet, correct? But there was a connection that brought you both together. That is what you search for. Sometimes I feel she loses a sense of what is up and what is down - because for her you were that compass. She fell for you so completely- and that was because of you. Not a bond. Not another version of you. Just you.”
He studied her. "I am glad that the children have you here. They will benefit from your wisdom as much as I am. You have that grounding effect."
She laughed - loudly - at that. “I wouldn’t go that far but I’m glad to be here too. I’ve missed them.”
"Indeed, I think you returned in time. Severine would have driven me insane." He rubbed the bridge of his nose showing how frustrated and tired he really was.
“Tell me,” Laura encouraged. She knew Severine especially had a way of getting under her father’s skin, not always on purpose.
"She is determined to be a warrior nun. She wishes to study at the Monastery of the Goddess of Fire. No matter how many times I have told her that it is something we shall talk of later...she is quite...insistent."
“She knows her own mind,” Laura agreed. “And that is good. Our children should always grow up to have the courage and confidence to follow their own path. Even if we don’t always think it best. Have you asked her why she wants to do this?”
"Indeed. She feels that this is what she is meant to do. Study Vulcan Mysticism." He sighed. "It is...a difficult decision. I must speak to Alexandra before I make a decision."
“A word of warning,” Laura offered. “Even if it is not what you wish for her, be careful. Forbidding something sometimes makes it all the more …. Desirable. Like my bottle of vodka when Alex was fifteen or that boy who listened to the most horrible music and wore nothing but black… perhaps forget i mentioned that one.”
He looked at her. "I am indeed surprised that you were not able to tame the rebel in her... but somehow pleased. As for Severine she will find a way if I do not relent." He sighed. "How did you survive the difficult task of being a parent. You make it look....easy."
“Ha! Easy it is not,” Laura corrected, “but the benefits outweigh the difficult parts. And over the years there have been times when I was more like the child than the parent. But I like to think I did a good job raising her.”
He allowed a little smile. "Indeed. You did an excellent job." He sighed. "I believe I shall go and meditate. Today has been a trying day."
To Be Continued…