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Gideon walked into security while tugging at the collar of his uniform. They would be arriving at their destination later that day. The Betazoid mix was stuck in his own thoughts until he looked up at the gathered officers. A slow blink moistened his drying eyes and he looked slowly around the security team. Brows furrowed as his chin tilted to the side, eyes darkening as he searched for someone to tell him what was going on. “Guys,” he greeted cautiously as he stepped further into the department.
The security officers in the room, a group of fifteen, had watched as Gideon walked into the department and made his way towards his office without so much as greeting them. A few exchanged knowing glances while others purposely kept their heads down to keep from laughing. Three in particular, his normal circle of friends - Jonathan Battey, Jessie Jessup, and Ryan Winnetka, had approached the man as Gideon entered the small enclosed space. Each man had his hands in his uniform pockets and each with a sly grin on his face. Winnetka leaned against the door jamb of the office. Jessup a step behind him as he stood between Winnetka and Battey, and the latter’s hand was propped against the outside wall on the other side of the door jamb.
“Hey, Sal.” Winnetka was the first to speak. “How’s your day going?”
He’d sat down behind the desk, barely had a chance to take a look at the reports waiting for his attention. Gideon glanced up, eyeing Winnetka and then Battey. The look on their faces brought immediate distrust to the Betazoid mix. He glanced behind them at Jessup, inhaling deeply before nodding. “Just fine, thanks. How’s it been here?”
Jessup looked at Gideon seriously, a look of concern on his features. “You sure, Sal?” he asked. He ignored the soft snickering behind him that filled the department.
Narrowing his eyes, Gideon looked toward Jessup before shaking his head. “Yeah, I’m fine.” He unconsciously reached up and tugged at his collar again. The half-Bajoran blinked and took a brief look out at main security. A soft sigh escaped him and the security chief looked back toward Ryan. “What’s going on?”
Battey shrugged as he answered for Winnetka. “Nothing,” he waved a hand up nonchalantly. “We just had a rough night. Had to call in reinforcements to deal with some issues.”
Winnetka nodded, but then stopped. “Well. It wasn’t really ‘nothing’, Jon.”
Jessup sighed. “Yeah. I mean. Seriously swamped. Could have used your help, Sal.”
He glanced between the two of them again, nodding. “What happened?” Gideon was trying to be serious about it, but something was off. He could feel an overwhelming sense of amusement from the group outside the office. Blue eyes caught them watching closely.
Winnetka sighed. “Well. We had the usual trouble makers at the Lounge.” Jessup and Battey nodded. “We found Crewman Grover trying to walk off with Mike’s private stash.”
“Oh yeah. That was sort of funny. Mike threatened to tell Nazir about it and Grover just about wet himself,” Battey interjected and grinned as his friends all shared a look and nodded. His facial features contorted in thought. “I swear I’m forgetting something. Winnetka?”
“Don’t think so.” Jessup straightened as he looked seriously at his companions. “Oh. Wait. Yeah. There was that problem on Deck 4.” He nodded as the two other men nodded their own heads in agreement.
He straightened slightly, cobalt eyes flicking toward Jessup. “What was that?” Gideon tugged again at his collar, clearing his throat at the uncomfortable feeling in his windpipe. The way these guys were acting had him on high alert.
“Anyone got that report?” Jessup asked, his eyes barely moving over his shoulder. Sauve came running up and passed the PADD in his hand. All eyes turned to Gideon. “All night,” he sighed. “All night, we had to deal with crap from Deck 4.”
“All. Night.” Battey lamented, his mouth twitching into a smile. It was a smile mirrored by his companions.
“Noise complaints,” Winnetka said slowly, his own mouth twitching as he tried to hold back his laughter as he watched Gideon’s face. “All. Night. Sal.”
A slow look of realization came over his features and he leaned back slowly, lips gradually parting as his mouth hung open. Hands dragged on the desktop as he nearly fell back into the chair. Color drained from Gideon’s face, but was slowly replaced by a creeping redness up his neck. An unsteady groan rumbled from his throat as he leaned forward, hands covering his face as he let out a nervous chuckle.
The department erupted into boisterous guffaw. The officers rushed the office, pushing Winnetka, Battey, and Jessup forward. They filled the small space until bodies could no longer fit. Those who lingered outside the door, leaned on shoulders so they could peer over shoulders.
Battey slapped one of Gideon’s shoulders, Jessup the other as he put the PADD in front of Gideon to read. Winnetka laughed as he pushed an ensign away from him. The room was filled with questions and comments.
“How was she?!”
“Why are you even asking?! Everyone heard!”
“All night, Sal! That’s got to be a record!”
“They heard you guys on Deck 3 and Deck 5!”
“That French, though.”
“What the hell was she saying? The universal translator must’ve busted.”
“I never thought Salieri would find someone who could keep up with him.”
“Guys!” He stood up, hands out to calm everyone down. Gideon glanced at all of them with a dirty smirk on his lips. “Cut it out,” he instructed. The red on his neck traveled up to his ears.
“Oh come on, Sal. You gotta give us a nugget.”
“I hear she’s a dancer. That’s gotta work in your favour.”
“Don’t leave us hanging!”
“Yeah! You know we live vicariously through you!”
Shaking his head, Gideon chuckled. “Not gonna happen,” he muttered. He tugged again at his collar, now because his body temperature was rising from embarrassment.
Suave’s voice cut through the crowd’s combined laughter and groan. “So who’s next?” The room fell silent as all eyes turned on him. He looked around at the glares he received from the officers around him. “What? What I say?”
Gideon leveled his stare on Rico, no longer displaying any amusement on his features. He shook his head slowly.
Winnetka, Battey, and Jessup stared at Suavé, their heads shaking as they glared at him. They watched as the officers pushed Suavé out of the room. There were mutterings of congratulations as they tried to regain some of the jovial spirit that one of their own had effectively squashed. After a few minutes, only Gideon’s closest friends lingered in the office. Battey and Jessup took up the chair in front of Gideon’s desk. Winnetka closed the door to the office then sat on the edge of the desk with his arms folded over his chest.
“So. Ellie, huh?” grinned Jessup, his head bobbing towards the PADD of noise complaints he had put in front of Gideon.
Battey leaned back into his chair, his feet crossing at the ankles as they rested on the edge of Gideon’s desk. “Yeah. How’s it feel?”
He took the PADD, glancing over the complaint with a shake of his head. “You’re not getting anything from me, guys.” Gideon dropped back into the chair and smirked. He read over the report and chuckled before dropping it onto the desk.
Winnetka laughed. “We’re not asking for the details.” The other two nodded in agreement. “We were checking on you, Sal. You’ve been after Ellie for months.”
Jessup grinned. “We know this one’s- she’s different.” He shrugged as Battey nodded.
Gideon raised a brow as he looked between the two. The red had started to dissipate from his skin and he shook his head again. “Yeah, she’s different. I’m not gonna do anything to mess this up.” The corner of his mouth quirked into a grin as he thought of Marielle. Cobalt irises went starry and he leaned back in the chair with his hands clasped behind his head.
Battey grinned. “He’s got it bad.”
Winnetka nodded in agreement. “Could’ve told you that a while ago, man.”
Jessup laughed. “Took him months to finally get the courage to talk to her. That should have been your first clue, Jon.”
Battey snickered then focused on Gideon. “So. What happens now?”
He glared at Jessie, grumbling under his breath as he shook his head. “We’re kinda dating, I think, what do you think happens next?” It was an assumption, but he felt fairly confident in making it.
“You think?” asked Jonathan.
Gideon shrugged as he set the PADD down and leaned forward. He glanced between the guys sharing his office. “I guess. Isn’t that what it’s called when you want to see them again? And again, and again. And again.” He groaned softly as he fell back into the chair, his hands covering his face once more. “Deici giri, (Ten rounds.)” the security officer moaned.
“We’re gonna have more noise complaints.” Winnetka’s retort earned a resounding laugh from all in the office.
At that, Gideon laughed along with them as he nodded his head in the affirmative. “And now you know who’s getting all the Gamma shifts.” An evil grin curled his lips.