Reflections #1-4 - "Ritual Part 1"

={On}=-

[Main Bridge, Deck One, USS Pegasus]

The tugboat had arrived and helped them to cross those last, achingly long, few lightyears. And so Caelen was glad that he finally had gotten permission to dock and instructions to go with it. The ship got attached to the Starbase and with a relieved sigh he got up from his chair "Good Work people, now go enjoy some shoreleave" he stated before casually walking towards the turbolift. He wanted nothing else then to just go onto the Starbase and get a drink but first he would have to go and see how his Chief of Operations was holding out "Sickbay" is this the command he gave the lift and it got into motion. Still slower then usual and a lot more bumpy but it got him where he wanted to go.

Evans was standing up next to his bed. He was so incredibly bored out of his skull, he just HAD to get out of there... "Yo, Emerson, I'm going to try and walk a little bit. I just have to do SOMETHING, or I'll loose it. " Emerson just nodded. Even though there was enough to do for him, he knew what it must be like to be a patient. "Just a sec, Evans..." he said, as he pulled what looked like a jumble of metal tubes out of a closet. He flipped it around, pulled them apart, stuck a pin somewhere, flipped a lever, and gave the contraption to Evans. "Take this walker. It'll keep a little weight off your back."

Evans looked at the walker with an odd look, mixed with a bit of embarrassment. "What do I need that for? I'm not even in my thirties!" "Just trust me on this one, OK?" Emerson just said, insisting on Evans taking the walker. Evans sighed. "Ok, fine, I guess you're the one who knows..."

He took the walker and started shuffling out of sickbay.

"Not so fast Lieutenant" Caelen said when the doors opened up right before he could've triggered them and saw Evans appear, shuffling, slowly making way towards the airlock probably "I wanted to give you a proper visit in sickbay but I guess I'm late"

Evans startled by the doors opening, and the the captain barging in... "Whoah! Eh... Oh man! Please sir, stop sneaking up on me like that! Bloody hell.."

Kitty was headed to Sickbay, in uniform, looking a good deal calmer than she had in a while. She paused, seeing the doors open and the one she'd come to see in the process of almost exiting Sickbay.. with... a walker. She quirked a smile as she approached the two.

"G'ah!" Evans startled again, as the door opened before it should again. "Oh, thank god, it's you..."

Caelen gave a nod to his Chief Engineer "Good evening Lieutenant" he said, very coldly, very professionally. "For those who haven't looked out of the windows in a long time, we've just arrived at the Starbase"

"Aaah, I can't wait to get away from this hunk-a-junk... I mean... Oh no..." Evans groaned.

"Nice look," Kitty told her boyfriend in friendly amusement. "Rather............. geriatric." Then she blinked, confused a bit at the captain's cold tone, and straightened up. "I got the news from Engineering, sir. We have the repair lists ready for the Starbase engineers."

Caelen frowned a bit but decided not to remark on it "Doc!" he then shouted into the Sickbay, they were drinking buddies on the last SB they raided so he figured he might want to come with again. "Yes, yes, that's quite alright" he then quickly waved away the remark of Kitty, he didn't want to talk business now, he wanted a drink with the Doc and Chief ops, of course they couldn't get around taking Kitty with them but he would just have to sit out... and perhaps even invite Jennifer with them.

Russell sat in his office going over some final reports that should have been finished days ago, when he heard his CO. He stood up from behind his desk and walked towards the gathering. "Here, sir." Russell said. "What's the emergency?"

Evans just looked puzzled, just after throwing an annoyed glance at Kitty for her 'Geriatric' joke. What did the CO need a doctor an engineer AND an ops officer for?

"Good now that you're all here..." Caelen said before turning to the doors again "...we're going for a drink" and he started walking, they needed this as much as he did.

"A drink, sir?" Kitty stepped over to Evans' side, a bit flustered by the annoyed glance he'd just sent her way and trying to figure out in her head what this had to do with Engineering.

"Great idea, sir." Russell said without a blink. A faint smile appeared on his face. "I hope the service is as great as last time we visited a Starbase bar."

"...Finally, someone with a good idea..." Evans mused, and he shuffled after Caelen. "Are you coming, you young and vital creature of pure beauty?" Evans said to Kitty, half jokingly. "Or do I have to carry you?"

Kitty blinked and opened her mouth, then closed it again, watching Evans start shuffling along. "Guh..." She took a couple of quicksteps to catch up to him. "Just for that crack, I ought to make you carry me," she said with affection in her voice. "Where are we going?"

At least they didn't protest, that was a start "One can only hope" he reacted to Russell his remark about their last visit to a Starbase bar. He stepped into the turbolift and while waiting for everybody to walk, and stumble, in, he tapped his combadge =/\= Commander LaBrie to Ensign Jennifer LaBrie, please come in =/\=

=/\= Jennifer here, what's the matter Caelen? =/\= she asked, T'Rell and B'Inca had just come round and picked up Alex to take her out for some good ol'fashion Vulcan 'fun' on the Starbase.

=/\= Can you please meet me at the airlock...=/\= Caelen stated, immediately picking up on the dozen things that could mean =/\=...the one with the Starbase attached to it that is.=/\= he quickly added.

Jennifer smirked a bit, which obviously couldn't be seen over com, =/\=Sure I'll be right out =/\=

Caelen closed the channel "I heard a rumour that they have bars here... just wanted to make sure I wasn't being made a fool of" he reacted to Kitty's question.

"A bar, sir?" Kitty blinked and blinked again, casting a panicked look towards Evans. The last time she was in a bar, it really, really, Really didn't go all that well...

Evans noticed the startled look on Kitty's face. "Don't worry hon, these are Starfleet regulated bars... Not some sleazy place run by some two bit pimpin'... eh... Ah... Shutting up now..."

It took him just about that long to notice he was actually talking about himself...

"If there's tequila and a pool table, I'm sure we'll have some fun." Russell said smiling. "Right, Evans?"

"I don't know what you're talking about..." Evans answered. He got some weird looks. "No really, I have no idea what you are going on about..."

"Are we going to just talk about it or actually activate the lift?" Caelen remarked as they weren't really getting anywhere "Computer, Airlock" he then ordered the doors finally closing and the lift starting its trip down to the airlock.

"No wonder..." Russell smirked, remembering the state Evans was in the last time they visited a bar.

Kitty looked like a.. well... like an engineering geekette being shanghaied and brought along to a... bar! "Tequila....?" She gave Evans a questioning look as she waited beside him in the turbolift.

Only a few decks down the Lift came to a halt and the doors opened, allowing all of them to step out. "Well come on, we don't have all day" they actually did but Caelen figured that wasting time would really be... a waste.

"Someone's in a hurry." Russell mumbled, but he was also a bit anxious to have some fun again. The last missions gave not much opportunity to have some relaxation. "So where's the fire, sir?" he asked.

"Down his throat, and he needs something to put it out, apparently..." Evans reasoned.

"Then a alcoholic beverage is probably not the best method to put it out." Russell smirked.

"Details, details..." Evans said, slightly mockingly "We can always start with an orange juice..."

Kitty trailed along behind, entirely perplexed now, as if they were all speaking a different language. Her face brightened slightly at the words 'orange juice', as if this was something she did understand.

"Or with Vodka" Caelen corrected his young Chief Ops, "Jennifer!" he then called out to his wife, burying any sign of hostility he might have shown towards her earlier that day.

Jennifer obviously did the same, they were the CO couple, the 'they live happily ever after' couple. "Caelen, Sir" she saluted him before putting her arms around him and kissing him gently. "You're going for a drink I hear... I could do with a Vodka" she said with a smile, her being from Bulgaria she stood her match in drinking contests, especially with Vodka involved.

"All accounted for, there we go" Caelen said, putting his arm around Jennifer and walking with her out of the Pegasus and into the Starbase, in the search for a bar.

"Everybody remember where we parked." Russell smirked when they walked out of the airlock onto the starbase.

"Hey, not so fast!" Evans called out, Pok-shuffle-pok-shuffling after his comrades in booze...

"So you brought your own support along this time?" Russell asked Evans jokingly. "As your physician I urge you to take it easy this time."

Kitty was able to keep up with Evans and she stayed near him, watching the way the others behaved, listening. "Yes, definitely 'take it easy...' she added.

"We have rooms on the Starbase, so you shouldn't worry about getting back in that scrapheap for a while" Caelen remarked, remembering who had to drag Evans back last time he commandeered a bottle of tequilla.

"Aw, come on! I wasn't that drunk... I remember every... How *did* I end up en bed that time?" Evans asked himself, never having thought about it, really...

"Don't worry Kitty, if they get to drunk we'll just leave them in the bar or put them in a cel to sober up" Jennifer remarked, arm still around Caelen, slowing him down a bit so that Evans and the rest could keep up.

Caelen smiled and looked back a bit "I'll just warn you now guys, so I can say 'I told you so' later on..." he looked in front of him again to make sure he didn't run into anything "...never have a drinking contest with a woman of Eastern European decent"

"You went to a bar and got drunk?" Kitty blinked and looked over at Evans round-eyed.

"It was a long time ago, he didn't know you yet back then" Caelen assured Kitty, before spotting a familiar face in a quite busy place "You've got to be kidding me" he said walking closer to the bar he just spotted. He dashed forward and leaning over the bar that was the only thing that actually had some customers at it, the rest of the bar was dimly lit and quite... calm "Well Waddayaknow! Here I am thinking I finally returned to my normal universe and it's all screwed up as well!" he commented loudly to the Tellarite Barkeep who was just pouring a drink for two of his four customers.

"Oh no, and I just thought my day couldn't get worse." the Tellarite barkeep muttered when he recognized his new guests. He was pleased to see them, but showed that in his own particular way.

"What? Of all the bars we can choose, we go here again?" Evans asked.

"Jennifer! This is the barkeep from Starbase 343, you know the one where we don't know the name of but that got us drunk on T'Rell's cost" Caelen waved Jennifer over into the only bar that had less then 20 people in it "The atmosphere is lousy and the waitering is even worse, this is my Wife by the way"

The Tellarite looked over at Jennifer and then to Caelen before turning to Jennifer again "What did you do in order to deserve him?"

Jennifer smiled "I don't know... I'm just a sucker for ugly I guess..." she shrugged a bit "...must explain my fascination with Tellarites" she winked before looking around waiting for the others to join them in the bar.

"...Wow, Deja vu..." Evans said, as he looked around. "Wow! Deja vu, indeed..." he said, as he spotted who was actually running the bar. "Well, I guess he'll at least have some good booze... You got evicted from 343?" he asked the proprietor.

"I was able to move to this spiffy new location due to your latest visit." the Tellarite answered. "If your pointy eared friend had paid me some more, I could have done something with the decoration." He then noticed Evans walking stick and asked with a smile on his face "Still feeling the effects of the tequila, mister?"

Kitty just remained quietly beside Evans, looking around at everything, still looking more than a bit confused, as if she still wasn't sure exactly what she was doing there.

"From that stuff? I get a bigger buzz from rootbeer." Evans answered. He felt some inspiration coming...

The Tellarite just laughed out loud and said "You were pretty buzzed last time."

Russell walked up to the bar and wanted to order something to drink. "Love what you've done to the place. Now get us something to drink." he asked the barkeep in a stern way.

"Remember who's boss here, ok?" the barkeep muttered before he went behind the bar. "Same as last time?"

Kitty was beginning to get the hang of this.. she spoke up. "Dr. Russell was in charge last time, too?" she quipped from her safe spot beside Evans.

"No, no, no" Jennifer waved her hands a bit "We'll go with one bottle of Vodka and five glasses this time" she interrupted the squabbling. She then walked up to a nearby, eight person, table and sat down "if you would be so kind to bring it over" she then insisted, she wasn't a communications officer for nothing, she knew how to communicate.

"Vodka?" the Tellarite looked surprised. "Whatever you wish, m'lady." he answered. He was a Tellarite, but he just could not be unfriendly to females. That was not in his nature. He had been that way, but it backfired...

"Now how did you do that?" Russell mumbled when he walked to the table Jennifer pointed out. "I guess I'm not the only one who knows how to talk to a Tellarite."

"That *is* odd..." Evans said, alternately looking at the barkeep and Jennifer, not sure what just happened.

"Uh, I'm not drinking any of that stuff," Kitty said suspiciously.

"Hey I'm not a Communications officer for nothing" Jennifer responded to that, tapping gently on the chair to urge Caelen to sit down next to her. Grabbing his had under the table as he did so.

Caelen smiled and just waited for the Tellarite barkeep to get them the glasses and Vodka, he kissed his wife gently on her cheek. For all their flaws together they were happy, these were times they had to make last as long as possible, with the Pegasus in repair and off limits for two months that wouldn't be a problem

"Ah come on don't be a spoil sport, just one" Jennifer said "You won't regret it" she smiled a bit seeing as the Barkeep came walking up with them with the glasses and the bottle.

"I might," Kitty said darkly, finding a spot next to Evans. "I don't metabolize alcohol well."

Russell sat down at the head of the table. "A bit of alcohol is healthy, you know." he said smiling to Kitty. "Just know when to stop consuming." he winked. "Hurry up a bit, will you?" Russell said semi-annoyed to the barkeep.

"Don't rush me." the Tellarite said. "Here." he said putting the drink and the glasses on the table. "Don't choke on it." he said and turned around.

"If we don't, you're ripping us off." Evans answered the tellarite. He was on a roll...

"Vodka... That's been a while." Russell said smiling as he picked up the bottle and started pouring in the drinks.

"Hey, I got rent to pay." the Tellarite snapped back at Evans from behind the bar.

"You do? I stand corrected, then you're the one being ripped off..." Evans returned with a smirk on his face.

Caelen grabbed his glass and pulled it closer to himself and Jennifer did the same. They both waited for everybody to been poured a glass, including Kitty, he then raised his glass. "To the best Ship and Crew in this Universe and the Next!" he toasted

"Hear, hear!" Russell responded and raised his glass.

Kitty raised her glass with a bright smile, took a sip, and immediately started to cough and choke on the strong taste.

"That's the real stuff, that..." Evans said in reaction to Kitty, as he smiled a bit. "You really don't have to drink it if you don't want to...

Russell emptied the glass in one swig and slammed the glass back on the table. "Aahhh, tastes as good as I remember, if I remember correctly." he smirked.

"To our own little corner in the multiverse, and hope I never turn out to be like that other Evans we met... Huuuuhh..." Evans shuddered at the mere thought...

At that, he followed Russel's example, and let the stuff burn through his gullet...

"Ghuuuaaaargh..."

Jennifer didn't want to be the only Eastern Euro Girl that couldn't drink Vodka like any US Guy under the table, she slammed her glass down the hatch before slamming it on the table as well "ahhh, just like home"

"Hey, be careful with those glasses! Some of them aren't paid off yet!" the Tellarite barkeep yelled from behind the bar when he heard his inventory being abused.

"Ah, don't be a wuss. You'll get your money." Russell snapped back, visibly amused.

Kitty eyed her glass and set it very carefully back down on the tabletop. "It certainly is a real Something," she said wryly.

"I don't think this stuff is exactly legal... Pour me another?" Ronald wheezed.

Caelen smiled, after having recovered from the twitch he got from the liquor, "It's not bad at all" he looked at Kitty's glass and then back at Jennifer "Another one?" he asked gently placing his glass back on the table, in a silent sarcastic way.

Jennifer now grabbed the bottle and poured everybody, but Kitty, another round before placing the bottle back in the middle. "To the best CO in the fleet and... well..." she smirked a bit to the rest "...you guys" she raised the glass "Ohw and to you Barkeep! May your new establishment flourish!" she shouted across the bar raising the glass.

"Thank you, m'lady." the Tellarite answered smiling and taking a slight bow. He wasn't acting himself around women. Especially not around such handsome women.

"Ok, that's something I can live with!" Evans answered. "Would you like something else then?" he asked Kitty. He felt a little bad leaving her 'out of the loop' as it were...

Kitty smiled, feeling a little bad for not understanding this whole ritual much. "That's alright, I'll try again.." She raised the glass and took the tiniest little sip she could manage, then made an extremely wry face.

Russell raised his glass and said "Thanks for the compliment." and slammed back the drink. "Ahh, just what the doctor ordered." he said when he put the now empty glass back on the table.

"Pun intended?" Caelen asked the doctor right before slamming down the glass on the table, just to annoy the Tellarite barkeep "This really is good stuff... like all the things from former Eastern Europe" he winked at his wife and kissed her quickly before squeezing her hand gently.

Evans looked a bit at his second drink. He considered the pros and cons of getting totally slammed again, considered that his girlfriend was right next to him, so he actually didn't want to become plastered... Not in front of her. Then the little booze-demon whispered sweet nothings in his ear... "Oh, sod it all..." he finally said, and poured it down the hatch...

Kitty took another very tiny sip, then set the glass aside and leaned against the back of her seat. She didn't seem to entirely notice Evans taking another drink.

"Have you finished that bottle yet? What's taking so long?" the barkeep asked slightly annoyed to his group of customers. "I got another one with your name on it."

"Zzo it *IS* bootleg?" Evans said, not completely able to suppress a slight slurr...

"Ohw... no... no more for me" Caelen said, knowing that when it came down to it he would probably try and fail keeping up with Jennifer.

Jennifer smiled, knowing full well why her husband stopped drinking "That's the best idea you had in years, love" she teased him.

-=Off=-

Lt. (jg) Russell D. Floyd M.D. Chief Medical Officer USS Pegasus

Lt. (jg) Ronald Evans Chief Operations Officer USS Pegasus "Heh, walking out under my own power..."

Commander Caelen LaBrie Commanding Officer USS Pegasus "Never pretend to a love which you do not actually feel, for love is not ours to command."

&

Ensign Jennifer LaBrie (Acting) Chief of Communications USS Pegasus "I wish people who have trouble communicating would just shut up." (NPC played by Caelen LaBrie)

Lt. Kathleen Black Chief Engineer USS Pegasus I still have no idea what we just did, really...