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A Little Time for Ourselves

Posted on Thu Sep 15th, 2016 @ 12:27pm by

Mission: Divided and Conquered
Location: NFO Headquarters :: Quarters
Timeline: Early March 2393


Was it strange to be able to build a life in the worst possible situation imaginable? A year ago Lauren would have said no, screamed it from the rooftops until she was hoarse. Her family was gone, her friends were gone and she was under the thumb of those who had killed them. Like so many others, she had found herself in a while other universe practically overnight. At first when the Order took over, she thought Starfleet could Rally. She thought that Starfleet would rally, push them back, just like they had always done. But defeat after defeat, month after month and more ships surrendered and switched their allegiance, it slowly became clear…the good guys weren’t going to win this one. When the reality of her situation started to become clear Lauren had become lost, alone, she’d considered ending it all more than once. After all what was there for her live for, everyone she loved was dead, they wouldn’t let her just leave and being a pawn in the Order's game held absolutely no appeal for her.

That was of course until M’Gann fell into her lap…well quarters. Her life changed that day, but at the time Lauren didn’t realize how much. Standing here, now watching her blue skinned, blonde haired beauty work, Lauren couldn’t believe how foolish she’d been. How little she’d understood the impact M’Gann would have on her life. Now Lauren couldn’t imagine not having her a part of it, especially not after Arvix took her last time. Those had been the longest three and a half months of her life, worse than the immediate aftermath of the Order’s takeover. Lauren was still waking up in the morning afraid she’d be alone; that Arvix had gotten his grubby hands on her again. Hell until she actually laid eyes on the woman, touched her soft skin, Lauren wouldn’t calm down. That was why she wanted to not only spend as much time with M’Gann as she could, but she wanted it to be special. She hadn’t been one hundred percent successful so far, but Lauren was convinced she’d finally found the right remedy.

Lauren would have to tear herself away from watching her love work. There was something oddly…satisfying about the way M’Gann’s hands moved, danced while she was tinkering. It reminded her just how dexterous those hands were… Add onto that the absurdly adorable way she chewed on her stylus when she was concentrating. Why wouldn’t she be content to just stand here and watch.

There was one final part that M'Gann was trying to fix, and it frustrated her that she couldn’t figure out how to fix the problem. If they went through the anomaly as it was, the core of the shuttle would overheat and numerous microfractures would appear on the hull. Unless someone was waiting on the other end to pull them out (which she doubted anyone was), it needed to be fixed otherwise the shuttle would explode. She felt a pair of eyes on her, and slightly turned her head to look at Lauren. The brunette appeared to be lost in thought, but at the same time invested in what the blonde was doing. "What?" She asked her curiously.

She never told her love, but Lauren was the reason why M'Gann allowed herself to keep going and not give in to Arvix and his ridiculous experiments. The hope that she'd see her smile, and those cute little dimples, and hear her laugh again gave M'Gann something to stay alive for. When Arvix had finally released her back to Lauren's custody the blonde felt a surge of relief, despite being about to pass out at the time, but she could rest and be at ease knowing that Lauren would be right there with her.

“Hmm? Oh nothing, just standing here enjoying watching you work.” Lauren said with a grin, pushing herself up from the frame of the door and walked into M'Gann's 'lab.' Gliding up behind the woman, Lauren wrapped arms tightly around her waist, chin resting on M'Gann's shoulder. "It's...invigorating seeing you work your magic." Pressing her lips lightly to M'Gann's cheek, looking down over the device the other woman was tinkering with. Lauren was a smart woman; a talented nurse and scientist but she was having trouble discerning just what exactly M'Gann was doing.

Still she didn't mind too much, despite not having much of an engineering mind she was learning a bit more every time she watched...well when she wasn't too distracted anyway. "So how's your work coming?" Lauren asked trying not to sound too hopeful. If she was making progress then maybe they'd be able to take a break and have a bit of time for themselves.

The blonde tilted her head into Lauren's when the woman embraced her, feeling her warmth seep through her clothes and kiss her skin. A sigh escaped her when she glanced down at the tablet in her hands. "I can't figure out this microfracture issue," she replied, tossing the tablet onto the work table. M'Gann rubbed her face with one hand before turning around in Lauren's grasp and resting her arms on the brunette's shoulders. "It's like... I know what the problem is, but whatever I try to do to fix it just doesn't work."

Taking another peak at the machine Lauren sighed. Honestly she had very little clue how to solve that particular problem. Staring into M'Gann's eyes, Lauren smiled reassuringly, letting her left hand rub the woman's back lightly. "I'm sure you'll think of something...did you want to talk it out bounce some ideas off this completely engineering illiterate Nurse?"

Part of Lauren was kicking herself, she would have much rather have just pulled her love away from this project; but seeing how much it was bothering her, Lauren couldn't help offering her assistance.

M'Gann let out a little chuckle before cupping Lauren's cheeks gently in her hands. "Thanks, babe," she said, pausing to stand up on her toes a little and give her a peck on the lips. She remembered the first time they had kissed, they were both blushing furiously afterwards and it took a couple days before either of them could speak about it. Glancing up at the taller woman, she gave her a soft smile in return as one of her hands tucked a lock of brown hair behind her ear. "It will have to be something I bring up with the engineers tomorrow. Unfortunately I don't know much about engineering myself; I'm more like the designer and project manager. Besides," she propped herself up onto her toes again so that they were at eye level, and got close enough to kiss but not quite, her arms draped over Lauren's shoulders and crossed loosely behind her. "... if I am spending time with you, I want to spend it with you, no distractions."

"Mmm, I like the way you think," Lauren said with a wide smile, leaning in to press her lips tightly to M'Gann's, her spirits skyrocketing as they decided to leave work behind. "Few things sexier than a woman who has her priorities in order." Lauren grinned, virtually pumping her fist in celebration now that her plan for a romantic evening could go forward. Although she had to admit that M'Gann's well focused mind was just one of the many things that had attracted Lauren to the woman in the first place.

"Little excited, are we?" M'Gann purred, giving her a playful smirk. She could always count on Lauren to cheer her up, even if it was the smallest of gestures like playing with her hair. "Maybe we can sneak in some alone time before the next session." It wasn't helpful that Arvix didn't give her a solid schedule for these so she could plan around them, but so far she had managed to make it work. "I'll show you how invigorating my magic can be," she playfully added, biting her lower lip. Letting herself fall back to her normal height, the blonde turned briefly to save her work and put it away before turning back toward Lauren.

"I might be a little...excited " Lauren replied with an innocent grin as her hands played up and down M'Gann's sides. Frankly now that her plans were in motion for the two of them, excited didn't quite seem to be the appropriate description. She was ecstatic, overjoyed, boundless...she could almost forget the horrors that were around them. "How could I not be when you're promising magic. In fact I had been hoping I could steal you away for the evening."

M'Gann raised an eyebrow at the brunette. "Oh? I take it you have something planned then?" It was more of a statement than a question, and she reached behind her to lace her fingers with Lauren's. "If so, then lead the way."

"It just so happens that I do have something planned, isn't that just the craziest coincidence?" Lauren asked, her grin turning from innocent to downright mirthful. Kissing M'Gann lightly on the tip of her nose, Lauren spun them about and tugged the blonde towards the lab doors. All she had to do was get M'Gann back to her quarters and she'd be free to put things into motion. "In fact it's something very special, the start of an old-new tradition for us."

The blonde followed, thankful to get out of the labs, and let Lauren lead the way. "You didn't redecorate again, did you?" she asked jokingly. It made M'Gann happy to see the brunette so elated about something, that she was able to find some good in the hell they were living in. "Whatever it is, just be gentle," she added, not needing to add the reason why. She knew she looked terrible, malnourished, dehydrated, but that was exactly how Arvix wanted her. It would be harder for her to rebel against him if she lacked the strength to. It annoyed her, but at best her anger was left to simmer. Earlier on, she had been able to fight back, but now things were different. Although she had been able to get some of her strength back, she was nowhere near where she had been last year.

"Only a little bit I promise." Candles, flowers...a bed of roses it wasn't exactly redecoration, more just a bit of accessorizing. But if she could, she definitely would have done more for M'Gann. Hopefully she'd timed things correctly and the dinner she'd planned out would be done and ready for them. Lauren had to admit as they walked down the corridor, she was starting to get nervous. She wanted everything to be perfect for them...well as perfect as they can be in this place anyway.

By the time thy reached their quarters, M'Gann stopped and leaned against the wall to catch her breath. The calling band on her wrist would shock her if it detected signs of exercise or if she tried to enter a gym, which left her with very little options. Some days, it felt like the only exercise she got was during Arvix's sessions as she was left to writhe on a table. "I'm ok," she told Lauren, knowing she'd ask, "just a little winded."

"Okay, just let me know if anything gets to be too much." Lauren's look of concern didn't quite leave her face, her hand resting on M'Gann's shoulder. She hoped that what she'd put together wouldn't be too overwhelming considering the condition Arvix had kept M'Gann in. "Shall we?"

When her breathing had returned to normal, the blonde gave her girlfriend a nod and a small but comforting smile. "I will," she replied. Putting a hand on Lauren's shoulder in case she needed support, M'Gann pushed off the wall before heading into their quarters.

Interlocking their fingers together Lauren pulled M'Gann into the room, her smile widening as she saw the woman take in what she was seeing. The room was bathed in deep natural yellow light, giving a warm sensual feeling to the space. The table was laid out; table cloth, wine glasses a serving plate with at least two servings of beautifully cooked fish. "I hope you like it." Lauren said, giving M'Gann a light kiss on the cheek.

M'Gann let out a breath of awe as she entered the room and saw the changes. It was simple and subtle, but enough to notice. "It's..." When she saw the table she smiled before resting two fingers under Lauren's chin and giving her a gentle yet passionate kiss. Her own smile was a tired one, eroded by the months of testing and misery of the place they were in. She wasn't even sure how much she'd eat, but she didn’t have the heart to tell Lauren she wasn't hungry and see her disappointment. "It's beautiful, Lauren. I love it, thank you."

"Anything for you love." Lauren was practically beaming at how happy M'Gann looked. After all she had been put through, the least Lauren could do was give her a special night or two, hopefully more. "And don't worry about feeling you have to eat too much, I know you may not feel like it but try, you might find you have more of an appetite than you thought." Leading her girl over to the table she pulled the chair out for M'Gann so she could sit.

The blonde took the seat Lauren offered her, scooting in a little as she nodded at her girlfriend’s words. She didn’t remember the last time she actually sat down with a plate of food in front of her; most of it had been a bite here and there or intravenously in the labs. She looked at the dishware for a moment. It wasn’t a normal thing for her to pray, but she was thankful to have a night alone with Lauren and hoped that nothing would ruin it. When Lauren sat across from her, the blonde went ahead and helped herself to a piece of fish, setting it carefully onto her plate. "You made this?" She asked curiously.

"With a little help from my trusty replicator and the LCARS database yes." Lauren said with a grin as she plated her own piece of fish. Watching cooking videos all week, Lauren wished she could have gotten fresh for M'Gann, really gone all out. "It actually wasn't as hard as I initially thought. Deciding to do a very late Valentines I wanted it to be special so I was determined to learn."

"Valentines..." M'Gann tilted her head a little at the word. "I've never heard of it. What is it?"

"I thought that might be the case, I'm not surprised it's an event that's fallen out of favor even among humans. But Valentines Day, held on Feburary fourteenth every year, was a day dedicated to love. Well it actually had many deeper connections but that's not important..." Lauren said, stuttered really her explanation a bit disjointed and not at all the Romantic gesture she wanted.

"Ok, let's try this again. Traditionally Valentines day on Earth was the one day of the year everyone who had someone they loved did something special for them. M'Gann, I love you, so, so, so very much. I can't imagine my life without you and although it's a little late I wanted to make sure we celebrated our first Valentines together."

"Well," the blonde added, letting a smile sneak onto her face, "it is a very nice Valentine's gift. Thank you, Lau. I honestly don't know what I would do without you." The blonde reached across the table and took her hand. "I love you so much, Lauren, and I don't think I could ever repay you for staying by my side and helping me through everything."

"You have nothing to repay me for." Lauren replied squeezing the hand in hers, laying her other hand on top, holding M'Gann's in both of hers. "I get all I need and so very much more everyday being with you. Please, never feel you're beholden to me, no matter what matter what we have to face. I'm here, by your side through all of it and there's nothing that will ever change that."

M'Gann smiled, but it was brief as her calling band chirped. Disappointment fell onto her features as she glared at the white band on her wrist. She pressed her index finger to the band, "Arvix, can this please wait until tomorrow? I'm..." she asked, pausing to look at Lauren, "I'm a bit busy right now."

The response was a shock from the band. "Now. And bring that distasteful slag with you."

"That's my girlfriend you're talking about, you asshole!!" The blonde winced when she got shocked again before giving a sigh. "I'm really sorry, Lauren. I feel bad because you spent so much time on this, only for..." she gestured to the calling band.

"It's not your fault." Lauren said taking M'Gann's hand once more, a soft smile gracing her lips. Hearing the calling band chirp to life had made Lauren's heart fall, how could it be that tonight of all nights he would decide to resume testing. It was like he knew, like he decided to pick the cruelest moment to interrupt. Wincing as the electric shock passed through M'Gann, Lauren felt her anger rising. She would never get used to seeing her love tortured, never forgive Arvix and his lot.

"While it's not what I envisioned when I started planning this, seeing you happy, seeing you at peace...even for only a few minutes was worth it. And someday when we finally are free of this place, we'll have plenty of time to make up for all the interruptions."

M'Gann wished that Lauren didn't have to go. She could only imagine what he had in store for them, and whatever it was wasn't going to be good. The blonde swallowed the lump in her throat as she blinked back the stinging in her eyes; she never admitted it before, but whenever Arvix called her for testing it filled her with fear. For all she knew, it was the day that he would kill her for good, and that thought made her squeeze Lauren's hand. "We can try to escape in a couple weeks. My prototype should be done by then, and we can get out of here forever."

Part of her wanted to disobey Arvix and stay with Lauren, but she knew that if she did that then he would come for her. "I-I'm scared, Lauren," she confessed, biting her lower lip. "If he wants you there... Rassilon knows what he will do."

Standing up with a soft smile on her face, M'Gann's hand still clutched lightly in her hand, walking around the table pulling the woman up. "I know sweetie, I'm scared too. But whatever that man is going to do it doesn't matter. We're going to get through this together." Gathering M'Gann up into her arms Lauren, wrapped her up in a tight embrace her lips pressing to the side of her head.

"Together, always...whatever happens." She whispered, rubbing her hands up and down the woman's back. It may not help much but considering what they were most likely about to endure, every little bit helped. Waiting until her loved seemed calm enough, Lauren started guiding them toward the doors. To say she was scared seemed like an understatement at this point, but she needed to be strong. Strong for herself and strong for M'Gann, they would get through this...they would get through this.



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