To Fallen Friends
Gods of War
Victor had yet to settle into life on the Minerva. Everyone he had known, everything he had known had just been eliminated by the Jem Ha'dar. On the surface of Goylat, the majority of his remaining friends and colleagues had been picked off one by one. With a clean bill of health from the CMO, Madison had refused to spend any time in his makeshift bunk in Cargo Bay 3. Instead, he had spent the last number of hours isolating himself in a corner of the ships lounge.
Her leg fixed up, Dina took a moment to relax. She made her way to the lounge, ducking through doorways as she did, almost as second nature. Most of the crew by now was used to seeing the massive Sirran prowl the ship. Most, not all. Once in the lounge she got herself a large, hearty meal of roast meat, and - looking for a place to sit - she spied Victor at a table. "Hey, mind if I join you?" she asked, her warm voice thick and resonant.
Not raising his head, Victor mumbled into his glass of Irish whiskey. Over the hours, the temperature of the glass had raised from a perfect minus one degree celsius, to a barely palatable 7 degrees. The words go away, and leave me alone unaudible to the average person. When the shadow cast by the newcomer did not move, he raised his head to give off and exclaim about how he wanted to be left alone. Instead, he was met by a towering Starfleet Officer, of a race he couldn't identify. "Holy mosses, you're huge!"
Victor raised his hand immediately to cover his mouth, he murmured through his fingers, "I'm so sorry, I didn't mean that to sound so rude. Please take a seat..."
"Yeah. I get that a lot. Strange, I know," Dina chuckled, razor sharp, dagger-like fangs showing as she spoke, taking a seat as indicated. "Dina Vossiborn, chief security. And you're the new em-cee-oh, if I understand right. Victor Madison, right?" she smiled, tail giving a slight wag as she did, offering a massive clawed hand in greet. Her voice was thick, warm and surprisingly soft, recognizing the state Victor was in.
Madison was still taking in the size, and features of the Commander that had just joined his table. He has a met a couple of Caitians when training local special forces teams for Federation member worlds, but this creature in front of him almost dwarfed even the largest Caitian he'd met. Reaching out, Madison grasped the paw... or was it a claw, he wouldn't tell.
"Nice to meet you Dina. I suppose as the highest ranking Marine in the convoy, I get the em-cee-oh post as default, right?" He hand returned the glass in front of him, cupping its curve with both hands. "Who thought this is where we'd end up?"
"I sure didn't," Dina flicked an ear, shoulders falling a bit as her expression soured. Just for a moment though before that friendly exterior returned. "But, here we are, and all we can do is our best, right?" she smiled, taking a bite of her food, swallowing it whole. "Tell me a bit about yourself? If we're gonna be working together, best I know what to expect."
"What's there to tell friend?" Victor downed the remainder of his drink in one. His head snapped to the left, and his eyelids smashed together in reaction to the high volume alcohol burning the back of his throat. "Life long Marine. I've seen deployment all over the Federation. Setlek, the Borg, Romulans. You name it, I've probably shot at, or been shot at by them."
"What about you? How did you end up here on Minerva?" He set the glass back onto the table, a solid thud confirming that the solid glass whiskey tumbler had successfully made contact with the tables surface.
"I was security before the war. My sister, she was with the marines," Dina named the company. "She convinced me to transfer over for the duration, convinced me I could do more good on the ground than in a ship. And so I did. War happened, I came out the other end alive but without purpose. Then I heard of the Minerva and her mission, and I volunteered. Got reinstated as fleetie for it too, with my old rank."
One of the civilian bartenders replaced Madison's empty glass with fresh one, immediately the disheveled Marine reached out, listed the glass and tipped it to his companion, "Semper Fi Marine," he took a sip of the scotch, "What action did you see during the war?"
"Oorah," Dina replied, dryly, raising her own mug of drink. "I was at Lorgan IV. Among others."
"Ahhh, I heard about that. Mass evacuation while under enemy fire, right?" Victor nodded as he spoke before leaning back in his chair, "You guys did good getting that many people out alive. You know there are rumours about that battle. Some say, the dominion launched an engineered bio weapon. Sometimes, I forgot just how low the Dominion will stoop to kill their enemies."
"Yeah, well. A nerve gas. Or so they thought. Turns out Tetrafluohexa-whatever-the-fuck does fuck all to humans. Makes their eyes a bit watery" Dina spoke, her expression dark. "Does something else to Sirran, though. Don't wanna think about it. Or talk about it," Beat. "Sorry."
Madison nodded, tipped his glass again, "To fallen friends." and took another sip, "Say no more Lieutenant Commander."
"Fallen friends and family," Dina agreed, raising her mug and taking a swig, eyes closed. She sat there in silence for a few moments, before giving a nod to Victor. "You're alright. Tell you what, I'll go make sure you're logged in the computer, all authorizations checked, all that good stuff. And if you ever need someone to help train your men, give me a call. Would do me good too," she mused.