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Nexus - Coming To Terms

Posted on Wednesday 8 November 2023 @ 19:40 by Lieutenant JG Oakham Renn & Lieutenant JG Zirvell Khen

Mission: The Search
Location: Nexus
Timeline: Unknown
1319 words - 2.6 OF Standard Post Measure


The cascade of light and sound began to fade as the room stopped spinning around him, he was finally able to get his bearings. The young Bajoran had been working himself hard in the ships gym. Trying to work out his feelings towards a particular crewman. Not only was it coming to terms with viewing him as a murderer which even he knew was not true of the individual but a tarnish for his entire people instead. On top of that he was battling with feelings he didn't know he could have for another man.

While working the gymnastic equipment, dismounting the parallel bars, he landed badly and something in his leg tore and he was worried it would need minor surgery. So as not to make a fuss he hobbled over to his bag, slung it over his shoulder and slowly made his way to sickbay. It would be a good moment to speak to the Doctor or even the Counselor if she was there.

It took longer than usual to reach sickbay because of the pain in his right leg, and he was conscious that he was still in his loose fitting gym gear and not exactly smelling the freshest given his work out.
"Doctor, I'm sorry to bother you but I may have done some damage to my calf muscle... Doctor are you here?"

Turning from his practice on a hologram, Zirvell cast the man a smile "I'm here," he answered, putting down his equipment and picking up a tricorder in the same move. "How did you hurt yourself?" He gestured towards a bed and bid him to hop on.

Oakham was in too much pain to protest and followed as directed by the Cardassian Officer. He hobbled over to the surgical bed and awkwardly hopped up onto the top, his legs dangling down over the side.
"I was in the gym... I might have pushed a little to hard!"

Wand already at the ready, Zirvell held a little distance as he started to take a few scans. "I need you to turn and lie on the bed," he said, giving the Bajoran a moment to comply before taking a step closer. "I'm going to touch your leg," he warned, then gently folded his hands around Oakham's leg, carefully probing the muscles from the knee down to his ankle. "Tell me when and where exactly it hurts."

In truth, the Cardassian's touch was soothing, his cool hands working their way down the young Bajoran's warmer skin, or until he reached the Talus in his ankle.
"Yeah, thats the spot" he said through gritted teeth as pain radiated up from that spot. As it subsided Oakham propped himself up on his elbows so he could see better as to what Zirvell was doing.

Zirvell continued to gently probe the area, keeping an eye on the tricorder's readings. "It looks like you tore a muscle," he reported, letting go of the Bajoran's foot to reach for his medical equipment. "I can repair the damage but I'm still going to apply a bandage to keep you from putting too much weight on it. And allow your body to do the rest of the healing." A blui-ish light emitted from a different wand he held, a soft hum filling the air.

When he was done he reached for the bandages. "I read that in ancient times, children could pick a colour and that even adults sometimes insisted on something happy and bright," he then said. "Current day seems no different." He smiled encouragingly as he held up several colours. "Which would you prefer?"

Oakham couldn't fight it any longer, he needed to admit not only to himself but to Zirvell as well just what he really felt, even if those emotions still had undercurrents of racial hatred... But they were the barest flavour now in a whirlpool of other, deeper feelings. He caught Zirvells arm in his right hand, gently, just enough to stop him in his tracks but he now had to find his voice which he feared would betray him so his whispered instead... "I love you!"

The Cardassian pulled his arm back, gently though so not to startle the other man. "Let me get you fixed up first," he suggested calmly, though he did feel a little flustered at the Bajoran's impromptu confession. "Then we'll talk, somewhere private. Now, keep up appearances please, which colour?" He held up the bandages once more, avoiding to meet Oakham's eyes for fear his resolve might break.

"What?" confused for a moment before he saw what the Cardassian had in his hand. "Oh, black I suppose so its looks less conspicuous with the uniform!"
He didn't know how to feel at this moment. Had Zirvell just brushed him off?

"Black... alright." Zirvell carried on with his task, tightly wrapping the foot and ankle up in the black bandage. "Alright, let's see if you can stand, and we'll move to the office to talk," he continued, offering his hand to help the Bajoran to his feet. He was certain the man would refuse, despite his earlier revelation. "I did say, somewhere private, and the office is that." He nodded towards the currently vacant CMO's office.

"Won't Doctor Anya mind?" the Bajoran was able to walk if with something of a limp having followed Zirvell into the office but he lingered at the door, not venturing to far into the room. Still feeling as if he was not wanted in the way he had hoped he would be.

Turning, Zirvell gestured towards a chair. "She's not here, is she?" He challenged mildly, "nor will she be as she's off duty this shift." He paused, watching the unsteady Bajoran closely, ready to jump and catch if needed. "This is private, if you close the door," he reminded the man.

It was a simple and very solitary word. A question with more layers than could easily be counted. This would be the moment he needed Zirvell to begin saying his peace and put the Bajoran's mind or possibly even his hopes to rest.

"So now we can talk." Zirvell kept his distance. "I'm confused," he continued, "your behaviour confuses me. First you push me away, and reject my offer of friendship, and now you tell me you love me?" The Cardassian shook his head. "I don't know what to think... other than maybe you're sick and the scanner isn't telling me?"

"Maybe. Or maybe I'm just confused. All my life I have been taught to hate your kind for what they did to my people, to my family" his voice softened noticeably as he started to open up. "I find I don't hate you though. I feel..." he thumped his chest twice gently but enough for a deep thud to be heard. "I feel something more for you!"

"It's not impossible to be confused, we both grew up with certain prejudices we both are getting past," Zirvell explained softly, gesturing for the other man to take a seat while he dragged the other chair around the desk to sit in a more casual setting. "I admit I never did feel any hate towards you, if anything, I feel curiosity. I want to know you," he admitted, still not quite sure how to take the Bajoran's words. "Can you explain what you feel?"

"You know how I feel. I've told you. I'm tired of hiding from myself... hiding from how I really feel!"
This was an alien feeling to Renn, almost like a dream in truth.

"Then stop hiding," Zirvell suggested kindly, "and act on how you feel?"

Oakham looked at the man before him... He licked his lips which had suddenly gone very dry. He had started to debate with himself but before he could get all twisted around again his emotions took over. He stepped forward pulling the Cardassian towards him...



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