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Starships and Chill

Posted on Sun May 22nd, 2022 @ 3:29pm by Ka'see 'Cassie' Anderson (*) & Executive Officer Jake Ford

Mission: Adrift
Location: Deuterium tank monitoring station
Timeline: MD-04: 0030hrs
2077 words - 4.2 OF Standard Post Measure

It was late. Again. Jake was mildly buzzed from the 'boys evening' together, but not enough that he was totally intoxicated. He'd not wanted to go to sleep straight away, especially having had the short rest in the middle of the day, so he was pacing and wandering, getting a sense of where things were up to now that the deck was quiet.

The earlier comments about the state of life support were playing on his mind. It was definitely a little chilly; not cold, but noticable. He wondered silently at how the more heat-sensitive crew were coping.

Arriving at the less-visited Deuterium tank monitoring station, which was essentially an archway built into the corridor - a little like an old underground rail station - he noticed that he was no longer alone.

"I didn't think anyone else was still up," he remarked, approaching Cassie. "We really do have to stop meeting like this. People might start talking," he added, with a slightly raised eyebrow. "What are you doing over here?"

Cassie offered a small smile at his appearance as she stood up fully so she was no longer leaning over the rail that looked over the tank. She was there as it felt like the warmest place that she could find at the moment. She did not want to admit it but she was freezing, even bundled up in the jacket she could feel it and it was not going to allow her to sleep much. “Just wandering.” She lied.

"It's a little warmer here, isn't it?" he said, noticing her tight stance. "The deuterium is kept in a warm state - not hot - to make the flow into the engines easier. Don't ask me how I know that, just one of those things you pick up." He paused alongside her. "Unfortunately it's just these tanks and the transfer pipes that hold the heat. Otherwise we would be able to cram a few people in here for warmth."

“Cannot say I have noticed the difference.” She said looking around trying to relax but failed miserably so took the opportunity to move to look at the controls. “I am sure some people would appreciate it if they could.” She commented not thinking that she wished she could do that. She had not slept properly in far to long.

"The temperature control isn't something we can fix too easily," he replied. "We're limited on power, and while life support has to take most of it we have the storm to worry about so we need the deflector working too." He wished he could make things easier. Not just for Cassie, but for everyone. "If we need to move a couple of people up here it's still an option. Maybe you can share the space with Kali and Liha?"

Cassie levelled him with a look that could kill but nodded finally admitting defeat. It seemed he was not going to back down and she was freezing, there was only so much coffee and warm drinks she could consume. "You cannot palm them off on me as you are worried they will kill each other." She murmured stuffing her hands into her thick borrowed jacket.

"Not at all," he chuckled. "I care about everyone on board. If a temporary arrangement helps keep them alive a bit longer, I guess we don't have a choice. Besides, if they do end up killing each other we can save on life support."

Cassie wanted to say something about just because they had had sex that he could not palm his problem children off on her as they were all similar. She was in no way keeping Liha and Kalahaeia from killing each other if it came to it. “Ah huh. I see where this is going.” She finally said smiling a little.

"What?" he asked, not entirely following. "It wasn't a genuine suggestion. We just need to make sure we've got solutions to the diverse nature of each of our crew. What do you think? Are we missing any tech solutions?"

Cassie held up her hands in a peace gesture and slowly approached him pressing her hands against his chest as she looked up at him. “I know. But I was teasing. I am obviously very bad at all.” She said wirily. It was something she needed to work on to say the least from the confusion on his face. “Not from this century or even my century.”

He welcomed her touch. It was relaxing, if nothing else. "Well that's entirely reassuring. I imagine this would have been a lot more difficult with a couple of hundred crew instead of a couple of dozen." He leaned down so his forehead touched hers gently. "And a lot more difficult without someone to share it with, you know?"

“Ship was new then less likely to break. Sebastian would have had a fit if something broke like this just out of the dock .” Her hands moved from his chest to his cheeks cupping them both. “Got me.” She reminded.

"I have indeed," he smiled. It had only been a few days, but already he felt they had something of a connection. And she was a comfort amid the chaos. "Your hands are cold," he noted, putting his hands over hers and pulling them back down to warm them against his torso. "If we need to scrounge up extra clothes or something, I can go find you some?"

"Sorry," She started and pulled back as his hand found hers and put them against him. "You humans are always so warm." She commented moving ever so slightly closer to enjoy the sensation of being warmer for a moment. It was not something that would last long but she would savour it for a moment. "Delaney found me a jacket." She said explained. "Just a bit bulky to work in all the time."

"Suits you," he said.

"I just got to survive the night and tomorrow I get to go around the ship in an EV suit." She reminded with a smile and that would keep her perfectly in the atmosphere where she thrived the best in. She was getting more and more tempted to drag her sleeping bag up to the Deuterium tank monitoring station.

"You and me both. Be careful, won't you? We had a fairly sudden breakdown and didn't have time to check if anything else went wrong. Could be hazards all over the place." He was feeling concerned again. Maybe a little too much care and concern, though. Cassie came across as the sort of person who needed protection, or at least in his mind, deserved someone who would look after her better than her previous relationships suggested. But he was running the risk of becoming the same. "Sorry...you don't need me telling you. You know this ship better than I do, I'm sure you'll have a sense for these things."

“I know I do not have the best track record with things but I do try and keep myself out of trouble. I won’t you that but I do know the ship. Why I am heading to the grotto.” Cassie said quietly. She was trying to not think about the state the grotto could be in but she had to hope that it was secured enough after all its adventures that majority of it would be locked down. “I was a Starfleet officer just the same as you Jake, and I survived a vampire cloud.” Cassie said smiling at the care he was showing.

"Old habits die hard," he shrugged. His habitual need to protect and support wasn't necessarily a flaw, but he wouldn't ignore his responsibilities. "Let's hope we don't have any vampire clouds on this one, huh?"

“I would not wish it on my worst enemy.” Cassie said softly as she looked at him darkly. It was only because of her Vulcan side that she had survived the the attack. It had been terrifying as the cloud has passed over her and she had thought it was all over.

"Forget I mentioned it," he retorted, sensing the discomfort there.

Cassie came back with a bump to her thoughts and smiled up at Jake. “But to make you feel better I will be careful. I am going with Kalahaeia to the grotto. We will check the bridge whilst up there as well.” Cassie moved her hands a little to find another warm spot.

"Well, she's one of the few people I imagine could convince me she'd be willing to fight a vampire cloud one-vs-one..." he mused. "I trust you both. Bring me back something nice?"

“Vulcoids survive it. Our blood is different to what it likes.” Cassie explained going into science mode before she realised where she was and where she was. “Sorry … lot of memories being stirred up at the moment.” She tried to make it less awkward by stepping back to give him space. “I will. Anything in particular you need?”

"Apart from you, safe and sound..." he smiled slightly. "I'll let you figure that out. See how well you think you know me."

The woman smiled ruefully at him and shook her head. “Oh test huh? I should say the same to you.” She turned back around on him leaning back against the railing.

"From the glamorous world that is deflector control?" He chuckled.

“You know it has been a pretty intense couple of days. Do you think once this is over we are going to be able to have a couple of days somewhere nice to recoup after repairing the ship and getting our delivery to where it needs to go?” She wondered thinking of the long non sonic warm watered shower she was going to have.

"Going off what Burnie said about how this happened, I figure Rosie will need a few days for repairs. So, yeah, that seems like it'll be a possibility. And if Reuben doesn't let me have a break after all this, I'm quitting." He grinned again. "Is there somewhere you had in mind?"

“Oh not at all. I would never assume from my lowly heights of operations so just really wondering if I am honest. Been a while since we have all had some time off and this just proves the ship could do with it soon.” She mused with a shrug. She had no idea what Gregnol was up to so she could not assume anything but she had faith that things would be okay.

"Rest assured, we get through this, I'm thinking a nice warm sunny beach, cocktails, sunsets, the whole shebang." He grinned, putting an arm over her shoulders as he helped her picture the setting. "And maybe a space we can feel a little bit less like we're constantly checking over our shoulders to make sure nobody thinks we're running off on our own while we have things to do."

“Shebang…” she repeated the word and frowned as it sounded strange in her accent before she nodded. She could picture it easily. “Such a human word.” She finally decided. “Sounds perfect. Been a long time since I have had a holiday like that. Last holiday we have all had was New Years and it was pretty cold on free cloud. I have done loads of things so I deserve to have a moment to myself.” Cassie said simply. “And so do you Jake.”

"Both of us do," he agreed. "All right. The two of us, margaritas, and some space to figure out what this," he motioned to the both of them. "Really is. I'd like that a lot."

Cassie nodded. They could not deny that there was something between them but what it was, was up in the air. “I guess we do need to figure that all out.” She agreed back.

"But not now," he said. He spoke as though it were a decision, but also as an open question. "You should try to get some sleep. Need you at your best tomorrow."

Cassie turned to look up at him from where he had his arm around her shoulders and leaned up to kiss him gently barely allowing him to respond before pulling back. “But not now…” it was not something they had the time or space to think on.

He cupped her cheek just fleetingly and nodded. Back to being a little more stoic, he glanced around the deuterium storage pod. "Time for bed."

 

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