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JPL Ensign Varok & Ensign Gar
Ensign Varok had just finished a shift in sick bay. He had been sentdown there from the OPS post on the bridge. Commander Lobren had toldhim "th' Doc needs ya more." He decided to grab something to eat before retiring for the night.
Walking into the mess hall, the young Vulcan officer was relieved to seeit was not very crowded. Looking at the chronometer, he noted that it was a half hour past the normal supper rush. Walking to the replicator, Varok ordered a light salad, and Nocena juice, an orange-ish liquid that most did not find very palatable but was very nutritious. He then proceeded to an empty table and sat down.
Ensign Gar had been studying the layout of the ship for the past several hours in her quarters. She could've easily gotten something from her replicator, but she didn't. She wanted to test herself. She wanted to test her knowledge, and memory, of the Excelsior, under fire, as it were. So she decided to try and make her way to the ship's mess a few minutes after you had apparently arrived.
The doors slid open and, looking casually pleased, she walked in. However, as soon as Ensign Gar entered, she looked a little surprised.
"Well..." she said quietly to herself, "It's bigger than I expected. Though I get the feeling I'll be saying that quite a lot the next few days." Looking around, Ensign Gar saw the replicators against the wall nearest her. There were a couple crew members recycling their cups and dishes. To her left was a fresh food buffet. This had become more common on starships because of the varied species and their different dietary needs. Not everyone liked replicated food. The kitchen was beyond that.
Across the vast dining area was a complete wall of ceiling to floor length portals. When the ship was not at warp, it provided a beautiful view of the stars. When the ship went to warp, the viewglass went opaque, and became an image of the stars streaking by because the actual view of a ship at warp would drive some species crazy.
Ensign Gar had glanced curiously at the buffet. She'd not seen such a wide variety of food laid out like that in a long time and she had to admit... she didn't know what she wanted. Deciding she shouldn't just stand there, she had moved off to the side a little.
Sierra studied her surroundings. Her eyes fluttered over to the viewport, then back to the buffet. She folded her arms. She was hungry, but didn't know what she wanted. And, she was honestly feeling... a little out of place. Moving to a table fairly out of the way, she sat down and stared out into space. At the next table over, sat the Vulcan ensign. He had been watching her since she had come into the hall.
"Excuse my obvious intrusion," Varok said evenly, "but I have been observing you since the moment of your entrance into the mess hall. By some of your body language and the fact you sat down without making a meal selection, I would surmise you are in some sort of distress. Is there any way I can be of assistance?"
Blinking, Sierra turned her head, looking surprised. She studied the Vulcan ensign for a moment before reaching up and running a hand through her hair. She frowned. “I don't believe so,” she commented. “I simply need some time to adjust to being aboard a starship which, to me, is twelve years in the future.”
A curious analogy for her particular situation, Varok thought to himself. Aloud he said, “Very well, Ensign. If there is anything that I can assist you with, please do not hesitate to ask.” He went back to eating his salad
The female ensign nodded. "I'll do that sir," she said. "Thank you." She leaned back in her chair a little, staring out the window. This whole experience has been quite overwhelming for her. Losing twelve years of her life, stuck on a rather primitive planet. Now she found herself having to readjust to life aboard a starship.
"I'll be damned if I'm going to let being twelve years out of date sidetrack me," she whispered to herself.
Despite the fact that Ensign Gar had whispered her words, Varok heard them quite clearly. Putting his fork down and taking a sip of his juice, he again looked at Gar. “Again, pardon my intrusion. It would seem to me that it is not logical to consider your time spent on that planet as a waste of your career, if I am understanding your meaning of being …€Â˜sidetracked.' In fact, you had a valuable lesson in survival that would make for excellent training at Starfleet Academy.”
The female ensign jumped, startled. She turned towards the Vulcan. "I... see," she begins.
"No, not sidetracked in that way. Sidetracked as in... some of my previous, and now my current, career goals I've had to place on hold as I'm having to re-educate myself. I'm not going to let the fact that I'm twelve years behind the times distract me from achieving my goals.
“As very well you should not,” Varok stated. “I would assume that is why you requested transfer to the Excelsior crew, instead of returning to your homeworld.” He took another forkful of his salad and washed it down with his juice.
Sierra nodded. "Indeed," she said simply. She folded her hands in her lap as her gaze found itself wandering back towards the viewport.
She wasn't sure what to say at this particular juncture. What, could, she say? So, she fell silent again. Ensign Varok finished off his salad and juice, leaving Sierra to contemplate her path.
“Perhaps,” the Vulcan said at length, “A logical start to reinvigoratins your stalled career would be to choose a good meal."
Sierra blinked, then chuckled. "Certainly true..." she began. "The only problem is, I have no idea what I want." She looked thoughtfully towards the buffet, seeming to stare at it for several moments.
Varok raised a brow and contemplated a moment. Finally he
said, “I cannot attest to this personally, but I have heard
several positive comments about the meat loaf.”
Nodding, Sierra spoke again. "Makes sense. If memory serves, your people prefer not to eat meat."
"That is true," Varok confirmed. "That is why I had a salad."
Sierra stood up, nodding. "Well there's no harm in it," I suppose. She walked over to the buffet and served herself. Returning to her seat, she placed her food down and began eating quietly as she stared out the window. Varok watched her momentarily and then got up, returning his tray to the recycler and leaving the mess hall.