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A Dinner Date

Posted on Fri Aug 21st, 2020 @ 6:33pm by
Edited on on Fri Aug 21st, 2020 @ 6:33pm

4,969 words; about a 25 minute read

Mission: The Ties That Bind - Empok Nor Episode 2
Location: Promenade
Timeline: MD002 1800 hrs

Nassie was pacing back and forth at the doorway, of her quarters. She was very nervous about the date. Mainly, because she was not mentally attracted to him. He was physically an attractive male. But she was not wanting to date, but she needed to make up for her sisters bs. It was the least she can do.

Talas was strangely relaxed. He had given himself a lecture and determined that he was going to have a good time with Nassie. They could end up just being friends, his ‘need’ always push relationships forward full steam needed to change.

He rang her buzzer and the door opened almost immediately. “You ready?” He winced at the dumb question, of course she was.

"Sure." Nassie, faking a smile on her face. Deep down she was not, but she put herself into this predicament. So she needed to see it through. She kept telling herself, give it a chance.

“Let’s go then,” As they headed down the corridor, Talas was nervous but he didn’t want to let the silence continue. “How did the rest of your day go?”

"A little tiresome, but what can you expect the Cardassians did a number on the station before abandoning her to us." Nassie said, as she followed him.

“I know what you mean,” Talas slowed down so they could walk side by side. “We have been working every moment possible on repairs.”

"So any hints, to wear we are going?" Nassie asked, as she followed him blindly down the corridors of Empok Nor. She was curious, what he had planned. She knew he did not have a lot of time to prepare for this.

“There isn’t much to choose from at the moment,” Talas admitted. “But there is this nice little restaurant that managed to open, it’s run by a former fleet marine and they say his food is really good.”

Nassie was mildly surprised by his answer. she should have assumed it would be some little hole in the wall dinner on the promenade. The gesture was in the right place, and the station was still in disarray. Not the ideal time for a date. "Have you eaten there before?" Nassie asked. She knew she had not eaten there. She was not familiar with any marines owning restaurants.

“I haven’t,”’Talas admitted. “It was recommended to me by someone I work with.” He hoped the food was as good as was said, he wanted this to go well.

"I guess will find out together." Nassie said, hoping this place would not suck. She already felt awkward for going on this date. The last thing she wanted to do, was be on edge over having date at a terrible restaurant. Cause if that was the case, she could see herself blaming the location for the bad date. She was panicking a little bit.

Talas hasn’t thought that the place might suck, he had had lunch with a few of the crew and they all swore by it. “Would you rather do something different?”

"This is your date, I am just here for the ride I believe is how the earth saying goes." Nassie said, hoping she got that catch phrase correct. She wanted to see how he handles things, and if there was any chemistry.

“It is,” Talas nodded. He led the way until they came to the restaurant. He could smell something that made his mouth water and was encouraged as it smelled really good. “Shall we sit off to the side.” He thought it would give them a sense of privacy to talk.

"I dont have a preference, you choose." Nassie said, as she said to herself, 'Well here we go!' She took a deep breath and mentally prepared herself.

Talas led her to a table, pulling out her chair for her. He sat down across from her and stared at her for a moment. “I know you are just going through the motions waiting to get this over with. If you really don’t want to be here, I release you from our date.”

"Why would you ever say that to a girl, that does not make her feel special. Are you not trying to win my affection?" Nassie said, in disbelief to what he just said to her.

“You are special,” Talas responded, sincerity in his voice. “But if you like someone you shouldn’t want them to be miserable. I know you didn’t want to come and I felt bad so I wanted to give you an out.” He handed her a menu. “I apologize, I didn’t mean to make things worse.” He had never had a knack with women, why did he always have to mess things up?

"Hasn't anyone told you, to look at every moment as an opportunity and not problem to solve?" Nassie suggested to him. She could see that his mind was wired for solving problems. He needed to learn to relax, and just enjoy life once in a while.

“They haven’t,” Talas smiled at her. “But having that kind of personality makes sense. I need to just relax and enjoy our evening.”

"Well I am telling you, since you apparently like me, then it might be a good idea, for you it. Taking the night off, of problem solving. Don't try to fix us, before you know what is right or wrong with this date." Nassie pointed out to him, hoping he was picking up on her clue to settle down, and enjoy this night. She was doing it for him.

“Point taken,” Talas smiled. “Relax and have a good time with no worries.” He looked at the menu, decided on meatloaf and looked over at her. “What looks good?”

"The Chicken La Cordon Blue, looks very tempting." Nassie said. It had been a little time, since she tried that human dish. She was eager to give it a try. She really liked the texture and taste of it.

“I have never tried that,” Talas admitted. “I usually go for beef, steak or meatloaf, beef stew. It might be time for a change.”

"Or should go with what you like. Don't feel obligated to order, what I am ordering. That won't impress me." Nassie pointed out to him. "I want to get to know you, not the guy trying to impress me, but not being himself. I have seen it to much in the past." Nassie said, feeling a little snooty for saying it. But she needed too.

“I had already decided on the meatloaf,” Talas replied with a smile. “It was a temptation but the one time I had chicken it made me sick.”

"Maybe it was undercook, that tends to happen when a chef either under cooks it. Typically Chicken is very good, and easy to consume." Nassie said, with a warm smile on her face.

“I will give it another chance sometime,” Talas smiled as he shut the menu. “I’m getting the beef stroganoff with noodles.”

"An interesting choice, I dont particularly care for mushrooms." Nassie said, with grin. "I plucked all the mushrooms off last time, do you know what makes it so creamy the sauce?" Nassie asked, as she took a small sip from her water. That was sitting at the table.

“I don’t have any idea,” Talas replied after thinking for a moment. “What makes it so creamy?”

"Me either, could be fun to learn. It's very good, despite the mushrooms." Nassie said, with a warm smile. She was trying to find topics to discuss. "I see our waiter coming." She said, with a nervous smile.

“Maybe we could take a cooking class some time,” Talas replied. “I can only make a few things well.” He glanced up at the waiter. “I will have the meatloaf.”

"Let's see how today's date goes, before we start talking about taking cooking classes together." Nassie said, with a warm sincere smile. That was a nice gesture on his part.

“Okay,” Talas nodded in agreement. “I got a little ahead of myself there.”

"Pretty smooth though." Nassie said, with a warm smile on her face. "Do you really want to take cooking classes, or you trying to spend more time with me?" Nassie asked.

“A little bit of both,” Talas confessed. “I do not know know how to cook and it would be fun to learn together.”

"I am not big into cooking, if I am being honest." Nassie said, thinking the gesture was very sweet of him.

“Obviously I am not either,” Talas smiled. “So maybe it was more about getting to know you better.”

"Dates are a good way, to get to know people too." Nassie said, with a warm smile on her face. She would prefer to relax, and allow someone else the opportunity, to cook for them.

“It is,” Talas agrees with her. “How did the rest of your day go?”

"I suppose it was okay, just a lot of work to do, and unrealistic deadlines to get them done by." Nassie said, hoping not to sound like she was whining. But it was hard not too. There was a lot of work to do. She rather focus on the date, than the work at the moment though.

“Mine as well,” Talas replied. “How long have you been in Starfleet?” He asked her.

"I thought the pip on my collar would have answered that question for you." Nassie said, with a big grin. "Unless your saying I am not smart enough to get promoted and look very old." She said in a sarcastic and teasing voice.

Talas laughed as he shook his head. “I am a little nervous, I confess. Can you tell me something about yourself like what do you like to do when your not working?”

"Apparently go on dates, with men who are nervous." Nassie said, trying to be cute sounding and adorable. She was trying to make him laugh, get him to loosen up some more.

“You got me there,” Talas laughed. “This must be pretty exciting then.” He joked in return, feeling some of his nervousness fade away. “I am kind of a mixture of things. I enjoy going out dancing and enjoying the evening with friends.” He took a drink from his glass. “And when I have some time off I like being outdoors, camping or maybe doing some hiking.”

"What's camping like?" Nassie asked, her family thought it was Bennett them to go camping. That was a tradition for peasants. She always wanted to go camping.

“It is exhilarating,” Talas eyes lit up. “You are away from all the modern advantages, you hear things you’ve never heard before and the stars and sky seem so much bigger. It is hard to describe but it is a lot of fun!”

The waiter returns with their food. Nassie smiled and told the waiter thanks. After words, she returned her focus on Talas. "But what's it like?" Nassie asked, with a sense of curiosity.

“When I go I ruff it,” Talas explained . “Pack a tent and essentials and live off the land. I find a place close to water, catch fish for breakfast, sometimes I hunt for food.” He smiled. “The taste of meat or fish cooked over an open fire is better than anything I’ve ever eaten.” His eyes lit up with memories. “I like to go for walks, you see wild animals in their own habitat, once I saw a bear. I was awe struck, she was beautiful out there with her cubs.” He paused. “I don’t know if I’m giving you what you want to know but imagine every thing you eat or experience is of your own hands and making.”

"How where you able to do this? My parents always said, camping was a commoner sport." Nassie said, surprised that his parents would allow him to go camping. Sounded like he had a lot of experience with it.

“I went for two weeks before I started the academy,” Talas explained. “With some friends. That trip was amazing, it helped me focus on my future.”

"On Krios?" Nassie asked, wondering where he went camping. Or was it on another planet she wondered.

“No,” Talas shook his head. “It was on Earth before I went to the academy. Things weren’t good at home so I decided the only way to be free was distance and a path set for myself.”

"I understand that feeling. My parents were not in support of me doing commoners work." Nassie said, in her best impersonation of her mothers voice.

“My Dad forbid me from leaving,” Talas said quietly. “He yelled and stormed around the house while my mother just quietly asked me not to leave.”

"Yet you left." Nassie pointed out to Talas. Her taking off, was more sneaky. She just left late one night, and left a note in her room. By the time her parents discovered what had happen, she was already en route to the academy.

“I don’t think my father believed I would,” Talas admitted. “I tricked him by making him believe I had two weeks before I was going. One day he left for work and I grabbed a packed bag, left a letter on the table and took off.” He shook his head. “He considers it running away but I don’t. He knew I was going.”

"Elloma made a big scene, I just left quietly in the night. Did not want to be the center of attention with my family." Nassie pointed out to Talas. "I knew my father would never understand, and that's okay its my life."

“It takes a lot of strength to leave,” Talas murmured. “I don’t think most realize how much. I wasn’t happy at home but still I was leaving everything I knew behind.”

"I did not mind home, but I knew it was not the life for me. I knew from a young age, I wanted to explore the stars. If we are being honest, I was hoping to get assigned to a Starship, but this will do for now." Nassie suggested to him.

Talas smiled at her. “I want to be a department head on a starship and someday a command officer. But I have a lot to learn and like you said the base is a start.”

"A captain huh? Do you know what type of ship, you want to command?" Nassie asked, interested to hear what he had to say.

“Intrepid class,” Talas returned without a thought. “I have always liked that one. What about you? Hoping for a chair one day?”

"An Intrepid, oh no, you have it all wrong. If you are going for a command make it big. Those Vesta's look really nice." Nassie suggeste to him. In reality, she had no idea, if she wanted to be a captain someday.

“A Vesta huh?” Talas thought for a moment. “I never considered that one before.” He smiled. “They do say go big!”

"Go big or go home, well in a vesta, you could be home." Nassie said, with a big grin on her face. "How is your meal?" Nassie asked, noticing he barely touched it.

“I forgot about it,” Talas said sheepishly. He cut a piece of his meatloaf and ate it. “It’s really good, how is yours?”

"I am rather enjoying it." Nassie said, as she took another small bite. This was not a bad first date, it started off rocky. But was doing better. She was still not sure about him. "Why an Intrepid class starship?" Nassie, curious to learn why that class, over all others.

“Well I like the look of it,” Talas replied with a grin. “I know it’s not the important part but she is a beauty.” He thought for a moment. “It is fast and they are built for long term missions which means out among the stars longer.”

"Surprise you did not apply to serve on the Pioneer? My sister Elloma use to be assistant chief of security on the ship." Nassie said. She wanted to serve on a Prometheus class ship, but sadly she was assigned to the station.

“There wasn’t much open at the time,” Talas explained. “I was offered a position here and I took it. This is how we gain experience and a reputation for greater things.”

"I am still debating on getting assigned to a starship. I want that experience under neath my belt. I believe that's how the human saying goes." Nassie said, with a grin on her face. She wanted to be honest with him.

“I understand that.” Talas said sincerely. “You’ve come a long way you don’t want any regrets.”

"I would not go that far, just starting out in my career. Not an old salty dog, well not yet." Nassie said, trying to sound funny.

Talas laughed. “Still it wouldn’t hurt to put your name out there and let them know you are interested should a position open.”

"I was kinda hoping that this station would get a support craft, surprised she does not have one, especially since the Pioneer was called to the Romulan Border." Nassie pointed out to Talas.

“Wouldn’t that be something!” Talas nodded. “Maybe some of us could get assigned to it.” He thought it was an excellent idea.

"That was my idea, get off the station a little bit. Help my chances down the road, with getting assigned to a Starship." Nassie pointed out to Talas.

“I think it is a good one,” Talas said with a smile. “Maybe you should make a suggestion to command.”

"who says I have not?" Nassie said with a grin on her face.

“I should have known you would,” Talas said with a smile. “You seem very confident to me and I bet you presented a sound case.”

Nassie just grinned for a brief moment. "I did what I could." Nassie said, with a big warm hearted on her face.

“That’s all any of us can do,” Talas smiled. “I hope we get it and they place you on it.” He took a drink. “After all it was your idea.”

"Don't put this on me." Nassie said, as she she shook her head no. Sounds like the Captain, wants the cardassians to provide a ship, since this is still their station. That was not my idea, I wanted a federation support vessel.

Talas smiled at her response. “I was only encouraging your career.” He knew it could be frustrating not moving forward like he wanted to.

"My committing career suicide, ya not sure how that is helping." Nassie said, with a confused look on her face.

“You make a good point,” Talas nodded. “I wouldn’t want that to happen for either one of us. I wasn’t thinking, I apologize.”

"It's okay." Nassie said, as she gave him a another hard look. He really needed to loosen up. She said, as she took another bite from her plate.

“You said you left in the night from home,” Talas murmured. “How did you make it to the Academy on your own.”

"You might have heard of them, they are called Starfleet." Nassie said, as she shook her head in disbelief. Asking herself, did he just really say that. She hitched a ride from Krios to Earth.

“You said you snuck off,”’Talas grinned. “I just wondered if you hitched a ride or had your traveling all planned out.” Did she think he was stupid?

" From them, not Starfleet. I book my escape well in advance." Nassie said with a big grin.

“Smart thinking,” Talas nodded. “I did the same thing. I knew if I didn’t my father would come after me and try to berate me into staying.”

"Maybe we are not that different after all." Nassie pointed out to him, as she took another bite from her plate. The chicken was very tasty.

“It doesn’t sound like we are,” Talas nodded in agreement. “Even though they weren’t easy choices I am happy with those I made.”

"So am I, never thought I would end up on a station, still hoping for a starship assignment down the road. But the trip so far, with Starfleet has been an eventful one, to say the least." Nassie pointed out to Talas.

“I admit my aspirations were high,” Talas grinned. “When I started at Starfleet I imagined them being impressed and moving me up in no time.” He paused. “Burn it was me that learned humility, something I needed.”

"You just got here, how fast did you expect to go up the latter at this stage of your career?" Nassie asked, thinking he probably had his expectations set a little to high.

“I was a dreamer back then,” Talas said with a sigh. “It was unrealistic; we all have to earn our way. I have matured since then.”

"What? When did you join starfleet? You make it sound like it was years ago?" Nassie asked, a little confused. Was he a career ensign? A screw up? Did she totally miss read him?

“No, not at all,” Talas smiled. “It feels like it sometimes because in that short time I changed a lot.”

"Do you always live for each moment? I noticed that about you, living in the moment. Do you ever plan things out?" Nassie asked, wondering why he was by the moment, type of guy.

“I plan things out more carefully now,” Talas murmured. “Living in the moment can have some consequences that are less than favorable.”

"Like what?" Nassie asked, curious to see if he could figure out his less than favorable consequences.

Talas thought for a moment. “When I was at the academy I was such a showoff, trying to impress my teachers that I took on an experiment that was beyond my training and almost got several people injured.” He thought back to the incident. “I almost got kicked out.”

"That was you?" Nassie asked, remembering that event. She did not know him personally during the academy. They had no classes together, mainly because she was trained on Betazed while he was trained on Earth.

She had heard about the event. And wondered what happened to the cadet, that was almost kicked out. Now it appeared that she was going to be able to find out.

“Yes,” Talas was embarrassed that she appeared to know about it. He let the memories flow for a moment. “At first they told me to pack up, I was being kicked out. I went and packed my things, trying to decide what I was going to do with my life, there was no way I was going home.”

"What made you decide to stay?" Nassie asked, she was curious what turned him around? Why did he stay?

“I was walking out and I thought to myself that this couldn’t be the end,” Talas replied. “I went to see my teacher who was insistent that it was too late. I think he finally saw that I was earnest in my regret and willingness to change. I agreed to follow his rules and not be a hit shot anymore and he went with me to plead my case. ”He smiled at her. “It took a week of me showing up every day for them to give me a second chance.”

"Why did you do you have a change of heart? Was it really a selfless act, or was it to avoid going home to your parents?" Nassie asked, she wanted to know more about his character.

“I was scared for one thing,” Talas murmured. “I had no one to turn to, the only way out was to go home and prove my father right. “He paused. “The only person to blame was me. I looked at myself and I didn’t like what I saw. I wasn’t a quitter and I could change.”

Nassie took another bite from her plate. She was giving him, her full attention. "I see, but your also an adult now, you did not have to go home you know. Glad you stuck by it, I have to admit it would be hard to bounce back, after the incident at the academy." Nassie said, feeling a little sorry for his situation.

“You are right,” Talas nodded in agreement. “But at the time it felt dire. If they hadn’t let me stay I am certain I would have moved in a different direction but I was determined to stay and succeed.”

"Now that you are here on Empok Nor, and survived a horrible battle, how do you feel?" Nassie asked. She was getting a lot of personal information about him.

“I know that fighting for my chance to serve was the right thing to do,” Talas murmured. “I hated the battle and loss of life but I know in my own way I helped where I could and it helped me to see strength I didn’t know I had.”

"Well were still here, so there is that. And you did good, and best of all, you delt with my sisters crap." Nassie pointed out to him, trying to cheer him up a little bit.

Talas grinned. “She really did her best to get me to give up.” He too am a drink. “I can tell she cares a lot about you under all that threatening she did.”

"She is a bitch, we both know it. You don't need to defend her." Nassie said, she was still sore at her sister, and embarrassed for the way she acted today. That was not fair to Talas.

“I don’t know what to say to that,” Talas said honestly. “I get your being upset, I would be as well. Has she always been like this?”

"Is she the person you really want to talk about, during a date with another woman? Especially her younger sister?" Nassie asked, hoping that he did not say yes.

“No,” Talas shook his head. “That wasn’t my intention.” His eyes met hers. “Any academy stories you would like to share?” He felt like he had bared his soul.

"Nothing as exciting as your stories, I'm sure." Nassie said, making that a polite way of saying no.

“I feel as if I have done nothing but talk about myself this evening,” Talas admitted. “And I know little about you.”

"That does appear to be the case. I have told you somethings." Nassie assured him, a little to much for her liking. But she was trying to be polite. But not willing to leave her comfort zone to do it.

“We are all different,” Talas returned. “I normally don’t share a lot but for some reason I find it easy to do all with you.”

"I see, and that is supposed to be make me feel special?" Nassie asked, in a slight teasing voice. But only slightly.

“Yes,” Talas said with a slight smile. “And a compliment I find you easy to talk to.”

"Well thanks I think." Nassie said, with a grin on her face. She was not sure that was a compliment, but she was hoped it was.

“It was meant in the best way,” Talas replied, his smile growing. “And I will admit you were right. Once I stopped obsessing and relaxed I am enjoying myself.”

"Obsessing?" Nassie asked, a little worried about his remark. She wondered, was he obsessing over her, or was he referring to Elloma obsessing about him pursuing Nassie?

“Over your sisters comments,” Talas confesses. “She was relentless.”

"On that we can agree." Nassie said, with a big grin on her face. "But I will ask you again, do you really want to talk about her tonight?" Nassie asked, wondering maybe he was more into Elloma, than her.

“Not at all,” Talas shuddered at the thought. “I was merely explaining that I had been tense but now I am relaxed and having a good time.”

"I see, do you have anything else on the agenda for tonight?" Nassie asked, wondering if it was just dinner. Or if he planned it out. She knew she did not give him a lot of time, but he must have come up with something.

“Are you in a hurry?” Talas hoped not. “I know there isn’t a lot to do with all the repairs going on but I thought maybe we could take a walk and see how they are coming in the arboretum.”

"No just curious." Nassie said, as she went on. "This place has an arboretum?" Nassie asked. She never expected the Cardassians to to have one.

“I heard we are adding one,” Talas amended. “It could be I am mistaken but it would be worth a look if you are interested.”

"If its not build, you know what that means?" Nassie said in a sarcastic tone to her voice. "More work for us!" She proclaimed.

“True,” Talas said with a nod. “But that would be cool to work on don’t you think?”

"Maybe, but only one way to find out." Nassie said, with a grin on her face. She had finished eating.

“Let’s go then,” Talas said with a smile, glad she had agreed. He hoped he hadn’t been fooled by his friends.

"Okay." Nassie said, as she stood up, and got ready to leave. The scene starts to fade away.

A joint post by:

Ensign Nassie Essu
Operations Officer, Empok Nor

Ensign Talas Ruhrie
Communications Specialist, Empok Nor


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