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Posted on Sat Aug 5th, 2017 @ 6:36pm by Commander Mercia Kavi & Commander Khelev ch'Koro [Halan]

Mission: Returning Home (Shore Leave)
Timeline: Kavi/chKoro quarters

Mercia sat on the floor in the dark, her nails tapping on a padd in her hands. She was next to Molli's crib, listening to the childs soft rhythmic breathing. A night light cast shadows about the room, and Mercia was lost in thought. She rubbed her forehead with her fingers and felt herself tighten up in the little hole between the wall and the crib. She always found tight places to hide when she was deep in thought, or stressed out of both. It had every thing to do with the fact her safe place as a child was always some dark tight spot she could curl up in and sleep. For years, even in starfleet she'd wake from nightmares and move under the desk in her living room. It was the only way to sleep sometimes. Of course now that she had a bed fellow she hadn't needed to hide from her nightmares.

She saw a shadow fall across the door way from the dim light cast in the room, she drew in a breath but remained still.

"It's just me," Khelev's low voice rumbled in his chest, his antenna were sensitive enough to vibration he was able to sense her tense up when his shadow fell on her. "She's deeply asleep, I doubt she'll wake up any time soon."

Mercia turned her eyes towards the crib, "A few hours at least." she said. Having an Andorian around came in handy with the baby. "It was peaceful in here." she said softly as she held her hand out towards him, so he could pull her up.

Khelev took her hand and helped her up to her feet, pulling her close enough he could kiss her forehead softly. "It is peaceful in here. Molli is sleeping well, she feels safe here. Even you are starting to feel safer with me around."

"I was just thinking about that." she said. Mercia leaned against him, turning her head so she could see Molli. "I haven't hidden in a hole due to a nightmare in a couple months." she turned her face and put her chin on his chest as she looked up at his blue face. "I like it... and yet... I don't." she whispered.

Khelev let a deep chuckle roll around in his chest, before he leaned down and kissed the top of her head, "What's not to like? You have me to keep you warm at night, but you certainly don't need me to protect you."

Mercia took his hand and led him out of Mollis room, not wanting to risk waking her up. She paused in the hall though looking in to the room, "Because this is too right. I have a family, complete with a partner and a kid, a great job... I keep feeling like something is about to go wrong."

"There's always the option of going on the lam and living out our days on an outer colony. Lots of bad things happen out there, might help your sense that something might go wrong," Khelev paused with her in the hallway, as he smiled. "Why don't you just accept that good things sometimes do happen?"

She sighed, "Because I don't deserve that." she said bluntly as she looked up at him.

"You deserve all of it," Khelev replied firmly. "You're a good person and you've got a really hot ass."

"Hot ass I may have, but I'm not a good person." she laughed. "I don't feel like I deserve what I have... I feel like I should be back on Frosts examination table, being tortured and reliving my Black Widow Training still." she sighed. "But things are not nearly complicated as they should be."

"That's foolish Mercia and you know it. You didn't deserve any of that," Khelev answered her with a growl, before he leaned down and kissed her cheek. "Things don't need to be complicated for us to be happy."

She watched him for a moment before she pulled back and took his hand. She tossed the padd on the thin table in the hall. Issues with Tali would wait for morning. She headed towards the master bedroom with him in tow. "Are you really happy here Khel?" she asked him as she released his hand. "I'm always so worried that not being able to run Engineering, and join in on missions is going to eat at you some day... and it will eat enough for you to run. But I know you're more loyal than that. So I fear it will change you, or that you will become a shell..."

"That's stupid," Khelev shook his head at her, as he stopped when she let his hand go. "I'm still attached to this ship, I've got plenty to keep me busy. I've been doing some consulting work on the side as well as a couple of projects and watching the little one. Being quiet for a while isn't such a bad thing."

Mercia bit her lower lip and sat down on the end of the bed. She leaned back a bit and ran her fingers through her hair, "Am I horrible for feeling so restless?" she asked. "I feel like its too quiet, too good, even with all of the things we face in missions and as the first officer... I keep having this sense I'm not meant for this life, I feel like I don't belong, and its scaring me." she admitted.

"You feel like you don't belong, fair enough," Khelev nodded, as he moved next to her and sat down. He kissed her cheek softly. "You're not horrible for feeling so restless, are you questioning Starfleet or are you questioning your place as XO?"

"I don't know." she said honestly. "Starfleet gave me a life." she said as she kicked off her shoes idly. "Kept me alive and kept me clean. I can tell you I'd never be XO with out being under Davids command, He puts up a hell of a lot." she laughed, "If he tries to retire again I think I'd take you up on idea of relocating and finding a new life for us four." she said.

"Relocating is fine," Khelev's antennae pointed inwards towards each other. "You're missing my point Merci. Starfleet didn't give you a life, you made a life for yourself in Starfleet. You've been an XO for years, never applied for your own ship or questioned your position. Maybe it's time to do both."

She made a face, "David left me in command for three months once. I hated every moment of it. I don't want to apply for my own ship. I think I'm questioning the fact I feel like I'm suddenly a grown up. I'm responsible, I have a kid to think about, a relationship to maintain, which I'm happy about, but it does change things. I find myself turning off holodeck safeties, craving some mortal thrilling." Mercia dropped back on the bed and put her hands behind her head. "Maybe I should question my position... maybe I'm no longer cut out for this." she said.

Khelev let out a low growl as he looked down at Mercia, "Stop that. You are more than cut out for it, but if you're feeling restless maybe it's time to question where you are headed. Your career has no forward momentum right now. You run a tight ship, the senior staff works their asses off for you. He left you in charge, but that's not the same as having your own ship, you're own crew. I'm not telling you to run at a command, but consider it. Consider retiring, we could run as mercs."

She reached towards him as she smirked. "I like it when you growl... hmmmm being Mercs... There is something to be said for that, however how does Molli and Tali factor in to that?" she asked him.

"It depends on what we decided to do," Khelev replied. "You really wouldn't consider taking your own ship and continuing your career? It's worth considering Mercia, you're far more than you believe you are."

She made a face, "Its not the fact I question my skills. I think I've grown past that, what I'm worried about is boredom! I've barely got enough action as the first officer!" she said.

"Then you're not doing it right," Khelev chuckled. "Are you kidding me? Get put on a ship that's exploring or on some kind of boarder patrol and find some excitement. The only problem is that's dangerous and we could all end up in trouble. As far as mercenary work, that depends on what we get into."

"Yeah but as a merc I wouldn't have to follow the stupid rules of Captain stays on the boat." she said as she sat up again. "I worry about raising a little girl in that sort of world, and where I'd stash Tali... or for that matter if I would live with guilt for not keeping her close enough for me to see nearly every day." she said. "I'm not closing the door to that, but I'm not sure I'm ready to do that just yet." she said. "Maybe we need a vacation." she said getting up and pulling her tank top off. "See if Lyla will take Molli for a few weeks, and you and I go pick some bar fights." she said grinning at him mischievously.

"A vacation isn't going to help you solve this," Khelev replied, giving her a look. "What do you want in your life? What are your goals? Getting into bar fights isn't a good long term goal."

Mercia scowled as she looked at him. She tossed her shirt in to the basket, "I have what I've wanted in life. Freedoms, a partner that GETS me... I keep thinking what I want in to get in to a fight!" she looked herself in the mirror moving her fingers over her stomach, at the few scars she'd left marring her flesh. "A few years ago Vanora showed up at my door and asked me to go help her make a deal with a Ferengi. Next thing I know I'm standing toe to toe with a Nausican." she ran her hand up along her neck, to the side of her head. "If she showed now... I'd want to drop every thing and go..." She looked at him in the reflection, "I'm going crazy aren't I?"

"You've been doing the same thing over and over, you're looking for a change. Honestly, I'm surprised it's taken you this long," Khelev leaned over and kissed her cheek, letting his antenna touch her head. "That would only satisfy you for a moment and your itch would return, what you want is something more I suspect. I know you can do anything you put your mind to."

She rolled her eyes, "You sound like Lyla." she muttered. She reached a hand up and ran it over his antenna. "Which is really annoying." she said before she lightly flicked the antenna and then stuck her tongue out at him.

Khelev flicked his atennea at her with a slight growl, before narrowing his eyes at her, "Don't flick them or I'll bite you, or worse. I sound like someone who knows what they're talking about."

"Yes well you actually ran off and got revenge. You got it out of your system before you came back to us.... me," she said caressing the antenna again. She wasn't sure if she was ever going to get over him leaving her behind fully, even if she understood it. She took a deep breath before she grinned, "And maybe I like the idea of you biting me. Like I said. I need some adventure."

"Me biting you isn't exactly an adventure, I've bitten you many times," Khelev chuckled at that. "I didn't run off because I had an itch to scratch, you know that. Besides, I've come back. I'm not going anywhere again."

Mercia shot him a look full of attitude. "Yeah yeah." she said shoving his shoulders back. She dropped hers shorts and tossed them in the basket, "And You better not go any where. If you ever do I'll hunt you down. I've been abandoned by too many people as is." she said.

"Even if I have to go somewhere, I would never abandon you, that's just foolishness," Khelev watched her with interest as she undressed. "I finally found my way back to you, I don't plan on giving that up."

She looked at him over her shoulder, seeing his antenna leaning forward with interest, "Good, because I think I'd fall apart with out you. I've not been so stable my entire life, knowing I'm not alone has changed me." she said.

"You've built something of yourself," Khelev stood up and walked up behind her, he pulled her into his arms and held her close. "You've made a good life for yourself here and I'd be willing to bet you're worried that you're going to mess that up."

She leaned back against him, feeling his exoskeleton under his shirt pressing in to her back, she looked at the pair of them through the mirror. "I am worried about that. That's part of why i feel so stuck." she sighed. Mercia closed her eyes and gripped his large hands. "I'm so restless and yet I can't give up what I have." she said. She swayed a little, drawing him with her.

"You just have to have a little faith that things are going to work out alright," Khelev answered her, holding her close. "You've got me, your sister and the brat and we'll go with you no matter what."

Mercia drew in another big breath. She looked up at him and saw his antenna bending forward towards her. "The well being of you three rests on my shoulders. In reality the best place for Tali and Molli is on this ship. Tali has care and security and access to medical advancements. We'd make due with Molli any where, but here she has the best opportunity for education, and she'll grow up with a better out look on the universe... better than what I grew up with." she sighed. "I know here is the best place for the innocent in our family, I still crave more, but I don't want a command." she sighed. "I know you'll be with me. You and your human fetish... and me and my bad ass self... I'd be Andorian if I could be." she smirked.

"Stop it, it's not like that and you know it. I'm not with you because of that, I'm with you because of you," Khelev replied, giving her a look in the mirror. "You taking a command won't take her care away, that would continue. It is, of course, not the only option."

"I know. we've gone over that." she sighed. "Command would continue her care, but leaving starfleet would complicate it." she sighed. Mercia reached a hand up and behind to touch his antenna. "I just tease you about your favoring human girls, I think its funny." she said. "I know you're with me because we fit." she licked her lips. She didn't say this often, because she was never really comfortable with it. "I love you?" she said before she stuck her tongue out at him.

Khelev couldn't help but laugh at the way she said it, it wasn't something she was used to saying, "I love you too Mercia, if I didn't would I have given up my ship to come help you raise a kid and be your live in house Andorian?"

She turned around in his arms and wraps her arms around his neck. "My live in house Andorian. Hmm... I like how that sounds." she giggled. "Does that mean you have to wear tiny underwear and walk around shaking it for me?" she snickered.

"I thought I already did that for you," Khelev grinned at her, before leaning over and kissing at her neck. "Hmmmm I think I'm over dressed now though, should we do something about that?"

Mercia tipped her head back and giggled. She ran her hand along his waist band and snagged a knife from his belt. She snapped it open and pulled back waving it in front of him. "I'll help." she grinned wickedly.



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