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Posted on Sun Nov 7th, 2021 @ 8:08pm by Laurier Cami & Chief Comms Angel Ferris

Mission: Holoworld
Location: Bridge
Timeline: Pre-holoship arrival
1120 words - 2.2 OF Standard Post Measure

Cami was still hurting a little after everything that had been happening with Dixoho. The relationship they had formed through circumstances nobody could expect to really understand had left her feeling a mix of guilt and shame at having to make the call she had made, as well as a sense of loss - like a piece of her was missing.

Sitting cross-legged on the floor of the bridge (her customary position when working), she had a section of the communications console spread over a square foot in front of her and her eyes focused on several connectors that were years overdue for refurbishment. Prophets knew when they'd have an opportunity to actually replace them with real modern parts again.

The turbolift doors opened and Angel stepped onto the bridge. Her eyes went wide as they took in the stations that surrounded her. It was unbelievable. Not at all unlike stepping into a museum. She had already seen a good deal of the ship since first stepping aboard, and had already been somewhat acclimatized to the Mary Rose. But coming to see the bridge, and her workstation, was a whole other dose of reality to swallow. Her workstation!

Angel's eyes darted about the parts strewn across the deck, settling on the woman that sat in the center of it all. Her heart sank even further as visions of the next weeks or even months of her life came crashing in on her. "What... is... " Angel began. "Is everything okay here?"

"Hmm?" Cami blinked out of her brain space and back to the moment. "Oh. No, it's not okay. But it's working - or at least it will be in a few minutes. We desperately need to update some of these." Sliding the pieces to one side, she pushed herself up and extended a dirty hand. "You're new here, right? Cami Laurier. I'm on the engineering crew."

She gratefully took the woman's hand. "Aannyil Ferris," she said, offering the first name with its proper Cardassian inflections. "But I generally go by Angel. I've found it's more friendly on most tongues."

Cami's eyes involuntarily narrowed as she pieced together the pronunciation. "That's a very...unique name for a human," she remarked. "I guess Angel works better, just so long as you're nicer than the other Angel and are willing to join the occasional girls night out with the rest of us..."

"That would be great!" she remarked. She hesitated a moment on pressing further. Her fingers laced themselves together, as if it were something happening completely independently of her own thoughts, and she found herself speaking. "It's a Cardassian name," she admitted. "I, um, grew up there, actually."

Cami baulked, immediately not sure what to say in response to that. "Well, so long as you're not holding some extreme views on occupations and the enslavement of an entire people..." she said earnestly, fiddling with the wiring in her hands. She stopped, lowered it, and looked up properly. "I'm sorry, that was uncalled for. You're clearly not one of them. Forget it."

Angel nearly found herself thanking the woman for her understanding, but stopped short, instead coughing out a bit of an annoyed laugh. "I'm sorry," she said, holding up both hands. "It's just. Well. What exactly do you mean by 'one of them'?"

"You know...them," Cami shrugged, not sure whether this new lady would find her view particularly offensive. "A Cardassian. You're still human, right? Prophets - don't tell me you're one of those genetically-altered spies they used to use and now you can't change back..."

"The Cardassians are hardly the only power to utilize spies, or to go to strenuous lengths to protect the safety and security of its people. I don't think there any many peoples left in the Alpha Quadrant with particularly clean hands." She levelled a pointed look at the Bajoran. “Do you?"

"Maybe." Cami looked at her own hands, covered in grease and dirt. "Some of us aren't afraid to get our hands actually dirty. It's the ones with apparently clean hands you've got to worry about, right?" she answered, aware that the woman hadn't actually denied anything.

Angel felt her face flush at the question. Was she on to her? Did she know about her real motives in coming about the Mary Rose? She felt a sense of panic began to build in her stomach, and immediately she set her jaw, demanding her brain to reestablish control of her frayed nerves. "I'm sorry," Angel said finally. "I honestly don't know where that came from."

Cami took a breath and lowered her hands. "No - I'm sorry. I'm not usually this...dark." Perhaps everything with Dixoho had left her feeling a little more strung-out than before. "Let's start again. We have a regular girls' night at the end of every week. You should come meet everyone properly; hear the gossip, who to avoid, who's single..."

Angel gave Cami a relieved smile, belying an overwhelming gratitude for the second chance she was offering. She found herself raising an amused eyebrow at the Bajoran's suggestion. "Anyone in particular I should keep my eye out for?" she asked. "Or better yet: anyone that you've got your eye on that I should keep my hands off of?"

"Oh, I...Oh!" Cami blushed a little before recomposing herself. "I guess you should join us on Friday and find out?"

Cami's suggestion was almost enough to make Angel step forward and hug her. But she quickly thought better of it. Instead she nodded earnestly. "Absolutely," she said. "And thank you. Honestly, I thought I'd stuffed my foot in my mouth so far that I wouldn't be able to get it back out again. Friday?"

"Friday. We're pretty casual. After Alpha shift. I'll let Jea and the others know you're coming," Cami nodded.

Angel was of two minds of what Cami was offering. On the one hand, she was being given a means to fast track her way into making several friends on the Mary Rose and to begin to truly fit in. And on the other hand, she was being provided with an amazing opportunity to start putting together the crux of her stories for the Federation News service. "I'm looking forward to it."

"Great!" Cami grinned, stuffing the wiring back into the back of the console and giving it a bump to make sure it was all set. The circuitry was so old these days that she'd learned a physical jump-start did a reasonable job. If it didn't hold up, it wasn't like anyone noticed with all the other things around this ship. "See ya there!" she declared, before bounding off for her next job.


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