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Part of USS Edinburgh: Mission 1 – What Burns in the Darkness and Bravo Fleet: Sundered Wings

You Never Can Tell

USS Edinburgh
May 14, 2400
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USS Edinburgh – Captain’s Quarters – 2000

The old Earth music played over the speakers in his quarters as the day ended.  Harris sat on the couch, sipping his chilled apple cider.

“It was a teenage wedding, and the old folks wished them well…You could see that Pierre did truly love the mademoiselle…And now the young monsieur and madame have rung the chapel bell…”C’est la vie”, say the old folks, it goes to show you never can tell…They furnished off an apartment with a two room Roebuck sale…The coolerator was crammed with TV dinners and ginger ale…But when Pierre found work, the little money comin’ worked out well…”C’est la vie”, say the old folks, it goes to show you never can tell…”

The door chime sounded and he lowered the volume while he said, “Enter.”  

Jordan Reid stepped through the door and let out a long sigh as it closed behind her, “I take it all back.  I don’t this ship.  It’s too big and I hate it.”  She gave an approving smile to the cup of chilled lemon tea on the end table and snagged it on her way to slowly lower herself onto the couch opposite his.  For his part, Harris remained silent and sipped at his cider.  Reid lay back and let out another sigh, “You didn’t warn me how big my sickbay was.  Good god, Ambrose…”

The CO chuckled and ambled over to his couch, “I thought you’d be excited.  It’s not as big as Bravo, but they did some nice work in the refit.  Okada is damn near thrilled with engineering.  They took the best of Voyager’s design.  She couldn’t stop talking about it.”  He sat back, “Prentice wouldn’t leave the helm station.  He just kept staring at it and running hands over the console.”

Reid sat forward, “How’s Thasaz doing?” 

“She’s…adjusting.  Says she hates having to wear a uniform…but she’s happy to have a purpose in finding out as much as we can.  I think that I was able to assign her to Chief Science helps.  Starfleet seems to think she tips the scale on the smartness. I don’t doubt it.”  He took another sip.

“You said we had some late assignments…”  She turned the cup in her hands, appreciating the cooling sensation on her hands.

Harris leaned forward and tapped at his PADD on the coffee table, Ensign Kondo De La Fontaine, a recent Starfleet graduate is heading up our security and tactical.  I haven’t heard a word about a counselor or anybody else.  I think Starfleet wants us out there as fast as we can get out there.”

She regarded him for a moment as they silently stared at each other, drinking from their respective glasses.  She leaned forward and refilled hers, “We gonna talk about things now?”

“We can.”  He also refilled his cup, “We also have to play by the rules.  Fraternization…” 

Reid waved him off, “I’ve read those too.  And there’s is a surprising amount of leeway given from situation to situation given how long the crew spends together in space.”  She caught a look in his eyes that vanished but she picked up on it, “You feel the same, don’t you.”  It wasn’t a question.  She rotated her cup in her hands, “You’re afraid, Ambrose…what are you afraid of?”

He stared at the floor and sipped absentmindedly while he thought of the right answer.  The truth?  The lie?  Or a combination of the two?  He chose carefully, “It’s not fear…it’s uncertainty, Jord.  I’ve had my share of relationships…but something that’s deeper…more involved…that’s the part I don’t quite know how to do, you know?”

She understood, “When you grow up…you have to work at it more than in those younger days.”  She shrugged, “You have to work at it.  Maybe that’s part of it?”

Ambrose raised his eyebrows, amused, “You don’t think I can work at it?”  

Jordan chuckled and laid back on the couch, “You know what I mean.”

The CO stood and moved over to where she sat on the couch and plopped down beside her, “I think we’re probably going to have to work out this anyway – we seem to get along way too good for our own good.”

Jordan set her head on his shoulder, the warmth of the moment releasing the stress of the day.  “I like us like this for now.  Does that work for you?”

Harris leaned in, “That’ll do, pig.”  He wasn’t surprised when she whacked him with a pillow but at least she was laughing.