Coffee Shop Courtship (RP Log)
|27 Apr 2014|
- Saith & Soah Coffeehouse [Deep Space 9]
- The smell of coffee and chocolate overwhelms the senses as you enter through the glass doors from the station's promenade, a little brass-colored bell attached high on the door dings whenever it is opened-- a purely novel gadget, surely. This is a small place, quite modest in appearance and setting. No more than three small tables sit overlooking windows to the bustling commerce area outside, windows that are partially obstructed by a display of boxes of tea and large bags of gourmet Rihannsu coffee.
- Artwork hangs on walls, bookshelves between the canvases hold a variety of well-worn Rihannsu literature and wooden bins of custom tea and coffee varieties. A little further back in the shop, a glass counter showcases no less than a hundred different types of chocolate confections, from the mundane to the extravagant. A row of clear glass containers sit atop the counter, also filled with sugary treats. This is one of those hidden gems that most visitors will pass by without a second glance; the sweets are heavenly and the coffee is ground and brewed as you wait. There hardly ever seems to be more than a few people in the shop at any given time. It is obvious that a place like this is about more than its wares. It is about relaxation and companionship, it is about unwinding from a long day and laughing with friends.
Senka is sitting at a table, pad before him, reading quietly. A cup of Emily's prefered andorian chai cools at his left hand.
Carey enters the shop hand in hand with the tall Cardassian tailor and looking up at him as she talks. "I didn't know you had a special preference for those Delebian eclairs. The flavor is a little odd with red leaf tea, at least to me." She is smiling and looks as radiant as she has of late, but even more peaceful and relaxed.
"Well I was thinking of trying them with something else, Tarkalian tea, perhaps," the Cardassian replies smoothly.
Senka looks up from his padd and across to Carey. His eyes drift unmistakably to their clasped hands. Looking at Carey, one eyebrow slowly rises towards the Vulcan's hairline.
Carey starts, not having even realized any other customers were in the shop until that moment, and blushes. Uncertainly, she waves. "Go sit down," she says to Vrillak. "I'll order. You don't get another chance to intimidate the barista today," she teases.
"Now, my dear. Would I do a thing like that?" Slipping his fingers from yours, the Cardassian equably makes his way to the Vulcan officer's table. "May I join you, my dear doctor?"
Senka nods to the chair across from him. "Fascinating," he observes quietly, watching his ensign ordering.
"Oh ..." and the Bolian emits a sharp explative as the Cardassian walks in. Watching him cross to a table, he turns to you seeming relieved. "Hi!" He ejaculates a bit loudly from nervous tension. "What'll it be!"
Carey approaches the bar, still pink to her hairline but unable to keep the smile off her face even for a second. "Two Delebian eclairs, please, and..." she pauses. "Do you really want Tarkalian tea?" she asks Vrillak over her shoulder.
Vrillak shakes his head. "You choose," he says before swiveling back to the Vulcan.
"Humanoid courtship conventions will never be clear to me," the Vulcan murmurs. "Well, just ask Emily if you have questions."
That shuts Senka up for a moment. "... Fascinating," he offers again.
Carey giggles at the conversation she overhears. "Um...anyway," she says to the Bolian. "Actually, make that three eclairs, please, and...let's see...I've had red leaf...two jestral teas. And a refill on that," she gestures toward Senka's cup, "if it's had time to get cold. It looks like it, there's no steam," she says with the air of one who's used to doing the sort of job her Bolian friend has.
"Right you are." The Bolian pours and mixes and steams and grabs eclairs. "Why is it everyone brings their courtship here. I'm not a romantic!"
Senka is sitting in silence across from the Cardassian, both of whom seem to be wating for you.
Carey blushes again and lowers her eyes. "Take it from me, tea and coffee shops just attract romance." She grins. "This is just such a homey place!" She pays for her order.
The Bolian gallantly carries the things to the table where the two men are sitting."
Carey smiles warmly at the Bolian as she sits down. "Thank you so much," she says.
Carey slides the Andorian spiced chai across to Senka, along with one of the eclairs. "I've heard tea is better hot," she teases gently, then places an eclair and one of the two cups of jestral tea in front of Vrillak. "And I've had your favorite, now you get to have mine. It goes much better with chocolate."
"Thank you, Miss Carey," Senka replies. Vrillak smiles his thanks. "May I presume," Senka goes on, "that there has been an operative change in your interpersonal relationship?"
Carey blinks. "An operative change in..." She glances sideways at Vrillak with a small grin. "That's one way of putting it, I suppose." She sips her tea.
"Think of it as a transformational alteration," Vrillak offers. "Indeed," the Vulcan officer murmurs. Then, in the same polite and reservedly relaxed tone he'd use to say anything else, he says to no one in particular, "I am, of course, most concerned for the well-being of my staff."
Carey smiles at Senka, the kind of smile that makes it clear she knows he's being kind. But there is a hint of concern in her eyes as she seems to think about something.
"Well, you're a doctor. Of course your concerned," the Cardassian banters. "Miss Carey is a consumate professional," the Vulcan replies, flicking a glance at Carey. "Now that you are no longer under her care, she may pursue what she likes. However," He turns in his chair, eyebrow raising and finger leveling at the Cardassian in a perfect, and perfectly unconscious, imitation of Captain Kainon, some hints of which Carey may have sseen before, "I am most concerned that she remain emotionally well and content. Otherwise I will be dissatisfied." The Cardassian smiles, not at all out of sorts. "Then we agree." Senka nods. "Excellent." The finger and eyebrow drops. "Congratulations."
Carey's jaw drops. Just a fraction, but it definitely drops slightly as she watches this exchange. "Thank you," she says to Senka, bemused. After a pause, she adds, "I believe that I'm ultimately responsible for my own emotional health...and I must say, some parts of the last few weeks represent some of the hardest things I've ever done, emotionally. I'm no longer worried about it, even though before today..." She trails off and shakes her head. "I'm rambling," she says with a self-depricating little smile, and takes a bite of her eclair.
"I'm sure the good doctor would agree," Vrillak says smoothly, "that, responsible as we are for our own well-beings, it's always helpful to have friends where you need them." "Indeed," Senka murmurs. "Such as, oh, admiral Astor-Cross," the Cardassian asks sweetly? "I was thinking," Senka says, "more of Captain Kainon Essa. Have you heard of him?" THat one makes the Cardassian pause a beat. "Certainly," he says with a smile.
Carey grins. "Everyone needs good friends. I may not have many, but I treasure those I have." She glances at Senka as she says this. "Is that his gesture?" She imitates the chest-level finger-pointing, which looks comically ridiculous when she does it. She doesnt say, "I can't imagine it's Vulcan," but there is a spark of amusement in her eyes. "It may be," Senka replies thoughtfully. "I seem to recall observing it."
Vrillak chuckles and sips his tea, letting you two talk.
Carey nods. "I seem to remember his son using it as well." She grins again and sips her tea.
"It seems," the Vulcan offers after a beat, "that much of what may eventually be my style of command will be traceable back to kainon. That may or may not be positive depending on who you ask."
"Personally," Vrillak offers, "I can't think of two men more different than those two, my dear. I don't get it." he looks amused.
Carey chuckles. "Opposites can attract in more than just one way, you know."
Senka raises an eyebrow. "What do you mean by that, Miss Carey?" he asks calmly.
Vrillak himself appears to be listening for the answer to that one.
Carey shrugs. "Well, everyone always says opposites attract in romantic relationships. But they can in friendships as well. From what I observed and you told me about Captain Kainon, he's very different from you. But I suspect the two of you bring out one another's best qualities when you work together or just enjoy one another's company." She pauses. "I'm beginning to think that this might be true for Emily and me as well. We're different in many ways, but I treasure her friendship, and I think we have quite a bit in common as well."
Senka steeples his fingers before him and considers that one. "I believe you and she may indeed have much in common. More importantly, however, is what you believe."
Vrillak nods. "Emily is a good person to be friends with."
Carey nods, grinning. "She's a ball of live energy," she says with a small laugh. "Actually, I'm surprised she doesn't find me boring, because she's so outgoing and vivacious and I'm so comparatively...well...not."
"That's not at all true," the Cardassian demurs. "You have a very positive and upbeat personality."
Senka nods. "It serves you well with patients, Miss Carey."
Carey smiles over the rim of her cup as she takes another sip. "Thank you both. I've been working on it...and have found that when people feel cared for, they feel physically better as well. I know that's been my own personal experience, with patients and as one myself."
"In that case," Senka says seeming to speak for the both of them, "the contrast between yourself and T'Lila diminishes."
Carey nods. "She's definitely warm and caring. I was thinking more of our ways of doing things. But different styles can compliment one another."
"How would you describe your, ways of doing things as differing," Senka asks? Vrillak eats his eclair, seeming interested in the answer.
Carey grins. "The other night at Morn's is a prime example. She jumped in with both feet, ready to have a good time. Whereas I'm the one the bartender gives a hard time because I never drink. Not because I have anything against it...I just don't feel I can."
Senka nods. "I occasionally consume ethynol on social occasions, though never to excess. If I may ask, why do you believe you cannot?" "Nothing like 2402 kanar, my dear. Nothing like it."
The door leading to Out slides open.
Williams arrives from Promenade - Section B.
The door leading to Out slides closed.
Senka, Carey, and Vrillak are seated at a table for four, an opening left. About 30 seconds before the doors parted, Senka signaled to the bolian who, puzzled, brought him yet another Andorian chai to go with the full one he had. He has time to slide the chai in front of the fourth seat before the doors open. His expression, in so far as he has any at all, suggests satisfaction when the doors part, but he listens attentively to Carey's response to something nonetheless.
Carey looks at Vrillak with a mock serious expression, though her dancing eyes give her away. "Oh, no, nothing like it at all, I'm sure." Turning back to Senka, she considers. "I'm not really sure. Something else I've been working on is being less inhibited. I probably don't seem inhibited at all to you, but to most, I would have. I've also been the only sober one a couple too many times. So whenever friends are drinking socially, I don't, just because someone should be sober." She grins.
Emily surveys the scene and smiles at the hot cup waiting for her. Moving over she takes a seat and greets everyone with a warm smile and ,"Hello."
"Now how in the heavens," Vrillak murmurs, "did you know that was going to happen?"
Senka looks back at him and gives him an answer he thinks the Cardassian might appreciate. "My sources of information are varied." "I just bet they are," Vrillak says, smiling over at Emily. "Hello there, my dear."
Carey looks between Senka and Emily and presses her lips together, but the grin slips out anyway. She catches Emily's eye and winks. "Hi, lovely," she says, using the term of affection Emily herself uses. If possible, she is even more radiant with barely contained excitement and happiness than she has been lately.
Senka studies the three-way dynamics before him and simply waits. Vrillak continues eating his eclair.
Emily smiles and takes a sip of hot drink, "Hello yourself."She looks the woman over and notes the glow around her before returning Vrillaks greeting with a, "Hello there handsome"
Carey hides her apparently permanent smile with a sip of tea, but only temporarily. "How are things?" she asks.
Senka slides an eclair to Emily, accidentally brushing the edge of her hand as he sets it before her. He pulls his hand back with utmost Vulcan propriety. "Greetings, T'Lila," he says aloud.
"Hello Senka,"She says with a nod happily taking an eclair.
Vrillak continues watching the Vulcans, eating his eclair.
Carey waves to the Bolian, attracting his attention. "Just put her things on my tab, too," she says. "I'm treating tonight."
"You can't," the Bolian snaps. "Mr. Vulcan over there already paid me to have it waiting. How the hell he knew he'd need it, I have no idea."
Emily grins while biting into her eclair.
"Simple logical induction," Senka answers the inquiry. "I knew that the crewman would wish to visit with Ensign Carey." This is delivered with utterly deadpan expression, and the Bolian seems to buy it. He just doesn't know better.
"It's a telepath thing," Aliyah soothes. "You get used to it." Her expression is utterly serene, although Emily would sense that she's lying and knows it, at least to an extent.
"I need new habits,"Emily laughs,"I'm so predictable."
"Well," the Cardassian says, "I'd recommend the Ktabban apple turnover and the Romulan latte." Senka raises an eyebrow as the Bolian groans. All he heard was Romulan latte. It was enough.
Carey laughs, and although she laughs often, there's a new, subtle note of genuine delight in the sound. "You think you're predictable?" she asks Emily in amazement. "I must not be as good at predicting as I thought." She laughs again.
"It would seem," Senka says to Emily with a seemingly absolute lack of perverseness or guile, "that miss Carey is to be congratulated. Though she should tell the story, should she not?" The last to the Cardassian.
"Undoubtedly. I couldn't agree more," the tailor murmurs. "A splendid idea."
"Congratulated?"Emily's brow raises,"Go on."She says looking over at Carey.
Aliyah looks in disbelief between the two males. "You two are just too hilarious," she says sarcasticly, but Emily would sense her amusement. Turning back to Emily, she says, "Remember that time I warned you to never let yourself get caught between a logical Vulcan who pretends not to have a sense of humor and a smooth-talking Cardassian?"
Senka raises an eyebrow at the Cardassian. The Cardassian does a perfect imitation of a helpless, what can ya do, shrug.
Carey starts to laugh. "That!" She points at both of them. "That is exactly why!" She sighs, still grinning, and places her hand over Vrillak's. "The entire story is long and complicated and not all of it is mine to tell. But you could say...we've resolved our little difficult situation." She slips her other hand under the Cardassian's and links her fingers with his, looking over to smile up into his eyes.
"Seriously!"Emily squeals happily, "Oh that is good news!"
Emily's squeel pierces the shop. The Bolian drops a coffee mug, empty, luckily. Senka impassively continues eating his eclair. The Cardassian smiles, letting the ladies talk it out. "It's mostly your story."
Carey can't help laughing, although she does glance apologeticly in the direction of the Bolian. "Thank you," she says to Emily, still grinning even as she gets up, goes over and cleans up the shards of the mug herself, shaking her head and waving the barista away. "After I first told you a little bit about this," she says, still talking to Emily, "I tried to just let it go." She pauses. "I actually had my best friend from Betazed here to visit for a little while, and she went so far as to prod at him. She shouldn't have, of course, and she knew it and I told her so. But she was trying to protect me. Then...things happened." She smiles at Vrillak as she drops the shards into the reclamator.
"I like things happening,"Emily responds.
"Are you particular about which things happen, T'Lila?" the Vulcan interjects lightly.
"Now that I'm healthy and in a safe line of work, I find that I want things Remi simply doesn't," Vrillak explains in a more sober voice. "That's not a criticism, but when you want to ply your trade and maybe have a family in the picture and the other person wants high adventure and no family ties, well, you see."
"That's understandable,"Emily says with a nod as she looks at Senka,"Similar goals and ideals are a very important part of a healthy relationship. "
Senka nods. "I was making that point to Captain Kainon only today," he says innocently. "He agreed with me."
Carey's initial response to Emily's response is to blush and cover her mouth as she sits down. When Vrillak and Senka are finished speaking, she adds in a more serious tone, "Not those things." She smiles at her friend. "I wouldn't do that...not when someone else was also involved. And...I didn't expect any of this." She's still a little baffled over it, in fact. "I expected it to end, and that would be that."
"Well things have a habit of working out when you least expect it,"Emily responds,"I am so happy for you!"
Senka and Vrillak say nothing, seemingly by mutual consent, leaving it to the ladies.
"Thank you," Aliyah says again, reaching across to lightly touch Emily's arm." Emily's congratulations mean a good deal to her, and her decision not to simply give up and let things go as they were was heavily influenced by what she guessed Emily would do in her place. But she doesn't say any of this aloud.