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Log Series: Homestead FOUNDATION
Lieutenant j.g. Behr and Lieutenant j.g. Vasari
(Note: This series takes place immediately following the Inquisition of Masterson plot.)
Despite the awkwardness that seemed to linger between them, Jane Vasari and Lukas Behr were an efficient team. It wasn't simply desperation to escape the neighbours who surrounded their assigned quarters. They had fallen in love with the island and the dream of a house that they could call their own. There were discussions to be had, but there had been some silent agreement - whether they knew it or not - not to discuss it until they were in the thick of things. Problems for Future Jane and Future Lukas.
The moment the shuttle touched the ground, the operations officer and the medical officer made their way to their respective quarters to gather PADDs. Already, they were assaulted in some form or fashion by their neighbours. Michelle practically screeched at seeing Jane, and Targid wanted to offer Lukas a hug of congratulations. There was no way they could work in their quarters as the neighbours below the German continuously banged against the ceiling and the Orion below the Italian surgeon was apparently hosting a number of gentlemen that evening, so they spent their time in the shared balcony space. At least the music from the Risian couple above them was pleasant that evening. They shared a bottle of wine as they filled out the necessary documentation to call the land their own. Within two hours of their discovery of the island, they sent in their request.
Approval greeted them in the morning and the two friends lost themselves to planning. When they weren't on duty, they met to plan. Despite their differences, they were both logistically driven. They combed the codes and design elements. They agreed that they wanted their home to blend well with environment.
There was must have been something in the air because it seemed as if their terrible neighbours all converged at the same time to complain about them, either together or apart. They laughed too loudly according to the neighbours downstairs. His cooking was too pungent claimed the Klingon. She was too cold and uncaring accused Michelle. He emitted a foul odor whined the Benzite. The Vulcan was rather adept at the underhanded, near passive aggressive, insults that the two friends couldn't help but wonder if perhaps T'Lek had a bit of Andorian in him. The Risians simply told them that they should join their party and …€Â˜live a little'. The Orion below Jane said the same thing, though the green alien kept her eyes on the operations officer. The medical officer could only laugh when Lukas pushed her towards the seductress and disappeared.
Completely exhausted from having to deal with such people, Jane had offhandedly suggested that they set up a small temporary house on the island. The two best friends stared at one another and their eyes widened with the realization that idea was absolutely brilliant. Not only would it allow them to start their three year commitment, but it had the added benefit of escaping their neighbours. While the operations officer contacted the proper individuals to order building supplies for their new home and the proper parts for their temporary one, the surgeon packed their flats. They worked together in the same room and simply ignored the banging on the floor below them and the music from the floor above them.
On the fourth day, they met with the quartermaster as he delivered the makeshift shelter. The roundabout was filled to the brim with the supplies they needed for their temporary home. The crates of their main things were stored at the outpost, but the items from their quarters were easily transported. It took quite a bit convincing, but Jane managed to get Lukas to leave her on the island with their things as he exchanged the roundabout for the outpost shuttle they were assigned - which forced her to make a notation that they needed to purchase their own personal craft. By the time he returned, the surgeon had the frame built. Together, it took a matter of a few hours for them to snap the walls into place.
The makeshift shelter was standard for quick building situations - perfect for missions where they needed to create shelter for millions quickly. It was small compared to their quarters. Their individual bedrooms could only fit a twin size mattress. The center room was a simple table and chairs and Lukas' hot plate served as their kitchen area. The dining area served as their work space as well.
It came as no surprise that without the foul stench, off-putting music, or aggressive neighbours, Lukas and Jane found absolute peace. There was a routine they enjoyed. They commuted together. Sometimes lunch was shared together so they could plan their future home - though the surgeon had to relent at sometimes eating out by the gardens and not in the morgue. They returned together and the evenings were filled with banter and laughter.
Gods, they were so happy to be free.
It had taken two days to sort the building materials from the outpost. But now that they had the supplies, they needed a solid plan. Discussions had varied on style and dimension, but now they needed to make a decision. They stood in the clearing, each with a PADD in hand as they thumbed through pictures and blueprints. They had already agreed on two master suites on opposite sides of the house with Lukas taking the east facing one. It didn't much matter to the operations officer because he knew he would be waking her to go for a run in the morning.
The thought of running brought on a tangent of where they could jog on the island. It wasn't necessarily small but they would have to do many laps to get their desired workout. Not to mention it would get boring really quick. Jane and Lukas hopped into the shuttle to scout the area around the lake. Scans revealed it was fairly flat and the shoreline was about fifty-five kilometers total. It would be easy enough to create a path and it gave them plenty of variety in scenery.
Lake Talara had been formed when a once active volcano made its last hurrah. There was a gentle slope to the land before it rose to form the rim, with one side that had fallen and allowed an unobstructed view to Outpost Phoenix. It was lush and green with colorful wildflowers that tried to climb the granite rock walls. Trees only grew in abundance on the island, as if the shore of the lake was too rocky. The water was crystal clear and supported an abundance of fish and shelled vertebrates.
True to his word, Lukas fished for meals and used herbs that he'd collected - and verified that they were safe - to season them over the grill. Variety came in spurts, when he would stop at the Galleria and pick up beef or pork. He roasted vegetables every night because he knew Jane preferred them. And also to keep her from constantly reminding him to put more vegetables in his meals. He wasn't too bothered by her …€Â˜backseat cooking' because she hovered close to him and he was able to enjoy the subtle scent that was intrinsically her. Sometimes he fed her bites just to bring her closer.
They agreed to a two story house with a stone exterior to remind her of her home in Italy and the grand castles of his German heritage. She preferred modern while he preferred industrial, but they both loved windows. They both agreed to a bay window breakfast nook, a sunroom to keep warm during the winter months, and a pergola in the back with creeping vines. It didn't take much pleading to have the operations officer design her a large studio space that would be separate from main living house.
The list grew as they simply added item after item. She wanted a greenhouse, modest in size, so she could grow vegetables and flowers. He wanted a dock for a boat that he intended to build at some point. She wanted flowerbeds in front of the house. He made plans for a work space of his own, to include an anvil and small forge. It would be more like a barn than a shed, but the island could support it.
There was a small island to the side, which they both agreed would be perfect for a shuttle landing bay. The bridge was the first thing they built. Though, there was no denying that the German did the bulk of the work. Jane hammered the nails. There was the slightest arch to the bridge that connected the small land mass to the larger private island. While he worked on leveling the land before pouring the concrete, she searched for a proper craft they could use. It took credits to use the Starfleet issued space shuttle, and she also hated the idea of taking personal claim to the craft when it would be needed for emergencies. As a gift from her parents for her acceptance into the prized residency program, they purchased her a vintage Type 8 Starfleet shuttle. It would add another ten minutes to their commute. It was scheduled to arrive within three months after it was refitted. Just in time, hopefully, for the big day when they could move into their new home.
Days off were no longer days off. When they were not on duty for the outpost, they were doing something to assist in the construction of the house. As Lukas got walls built, he called on coworkers to assist in setting them up where they needed more hands than just his and Jane's. They were paid in food and beer. Remaining busy meant little time to dwell on the intricacies of their relationship. In the short breaks that happened while he waited for the medical officer to retrieve something for him, he watched her moving easily around the island. One thing he had noticed was that they both seemed more at ease with each other, as if time was really all they had needed to get back into their groove. Her laugh was always carefree and her smiles were radiant. The operations officer was still at odds with himself but it didn't matter when she was so vivacious.
By the end of the first month, they had the foundation and the frame of the house in place. The roof was set to go on next, but Lukas needed to coordinate with coworkers for the extra help. They were both leaner from constructing the building and running daily. A well deserved break was given to themselves - and they promptly fell onto their respective mattresses and slipped into recuperative sleep.