USS VINDEX - NCC-2474-A
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Checking Out The Nightlife

Posted on Sat Dec 17th, 2016 @ 2:34am by Lieutenant No Name & Petty Officer 3rd Class Rebecca Ainscow

Mission: S1E2 - Unity
Location: D15 Bar
Timeline: Mission Day 10; 19:00

Rebecca had been satisfied with the day's work and also having built bridges with Claudia - although it turned out they weren't even broken in the first place. She had prepared for the evening after dinner and went with a casual look - a t-shirt and a skirt with tights. Arriving at D15 on time she was pleased to see it wasn't very busy - and because it was a Sunday there was nothing on that night.

Waiting at the bar Rebecca ordered herself a bottle of Corona and waited patiently for Catalina's arrival. In all honesty she'd been looking forward to the evening since it had been arranged and Becky was glad she finally had a chance to relax again.

The duty shift was over and Cat felt as if her brain had melted while she was cracking the encryption code for the Chief of Intelligence, but now she was off duty and headed back to her quarters. There, she stripped off her Starfleet uniform and luxuriated in a real shower, the first she had had in awhile.

Once she was finished, she towelled her hair dry and put on a white one piece body suit that had a shifting black rorschach going across it. She added a pair of white boots with black trim and headed out to D15 to meet up with her new friend.

Once in the bar, she spotted the short, blue-eyed blonde and headed over to her. "Hey, Becky," Cat said with a smile as the black patterns merged and changed on her body suit.

Rebecca was pleased to hear Cat's voice and turned to face her with her Corona still in hand and a smile on her face. She admired the Assistant Chief of Intel's outfit - it was certainly more of a "going out for a few drinks" outfit than her own.

"Oh hey Cat - I love your outfit. What are you having?" Becky replied.

"I think I'll have a Risan Mai-Tai," Cat said. "How was the rest of your day after lunch?"

Rebecca ordered Cat's drink from the bar attendant before replying. She didn't want to reveal the reason why she seemed so happy - not yet anyway. She imagined Claudia would be far from pleased if their night together became common knowledge on the Vindex.

"Not bad at all. Got everything done so I can start fresh tomorrow and not have to catch up. What about you?" Rebecca asked.

"I feel like a mental tricobalt device went off in my head a few hours ago and I'm hoping to drink until my brain liquefies or I turn into a new life form," Cat said with a laugh as she accepted the Mai Tai and took a sip.

Rebecca chuckled. She herself had needed a night out for a while and she was finally glad to be having one. It didn't feel right if she just went out for a drink by herself so Becky was glad for Cat's company that evening.

"I know the feeling. Cheers" Rebecca said.

She tapped her bottle against Cat's glass before taking a sip.

Becky smiled. "Let's find a seat...how about that booth over there?"

Cat tapped her glass against the bottle and looked towards the booth and back at Becky. "A booth? Seriously? A booth is where couples go or people who don't want to be bothered. Besides, the night is young and I've sat on my backside so much lately that it's getting flat and square."

Rebecca chuckled before replying.

"As you wish Cat. Care for a game of pool?" Becky asked.

The pool table was presently available to use and she loved playing it -it was one of Rebecca's lesser known talents and she was delighted to hear D15 had a pool table. Her father Tony had taught Becky to play pool as soon as she could hold a cue and reach the table properly.

"Pool?" Cat asked as she took a drink of her Mai Tai before turning her attention back to Becky. "They have a swimming pool in here for games?"

"I wish - there's a pool table though" Rebecca replied.

Becky took another sip of her Corona and walked over to the table to get the balls set up ready for a game. The table had a green felt surface and two lights suspended over the table on a light bar. Once she'd set the table up she looked back over at Cat.

Becky smiled. "See if you can beat me. I'll get the next round if you do"

Cat walked over with her and watched her set the balls up in a triangle formation and ran her hand over the felt surface of the table. She took note of the six pockets placed around the edges and then looked back at Becky. "How do you play it?" she asked.

Rebecca went and collected the cues before returning and handing the other cue to Catalina. Thankfully there were different sized cues available so it wouldn't be awkward trying to use a cue that was the wrong size.

"You use the cue to hit cue ball into another ball to try and place it in the pocket - to start with you can pot either a coloured ball or the striped ball. Once you pot a coloured ball or a striped ball you have to pot the rest of whatever one you pot and then the black ball. I'll go first to show you how to cue" Becky said.

Becky readied herself to break. She made sure Catalina could see her bridging the cue on her hand before striking the cue ball which hit the pack of balls and scattered them around the table.

Becky smiled. "Your turn"

Cat watched her after she accepted the cue and slide her hands over the long tapering stick before she gave it an experimental whirl. "It's off balance," she said before she watched what her new friend did. She moved over behind the white ball and put the cue on her hand the way Becky did, then drove the stick into the ball with full force. The ball caromed off a red solid ball and flew back in the opposite direction, hit the bumper of the table and jumped three feet in the air before hitting the table again. The red ball banked off the opposite bumper before ricocheting off several other balls, but none went in a pocket. "Like that?" she asked.

Rebecca giggled uncontrollably and wasn't able to get her response out. She leaned on the table and tried to control her giggles before trying to take her turn. Once she'd calmed down she managed to reply to Cat.

"At least you hit the ball as well and didn't hit the light" Becky giggled.

Rebecca then took her turn and managed to hit the solid green ball which wobbled in the jaws of the pocket before going dropping in and into the rack inside the machine. Becky took another turn and but thinking about Cat's shot bouncing off the table she started giggling again and scuffed her shot - merely tapping the cue ball into the solid purple ball.

"Oh boo that sucked" Becky said.

"What am I doing wrong?" Cat asked as she watched Becky burst into laughter.

Rebecca calmed down a little before replying. On saying that when she first started learning she managed to knock several of the balls off the table because she hit them too hard.

"You need to hit the cue ball a bit more gently. Although my first ever shot playing pool managed to see a ball fly off the table and knock my mum's cup of coffee out of her hand - the cup didn't smash though so I guess it could have been worse" Becky replied.

"It sounds like it was a strong cup. I hope your mom didn't get too upset," she said as she stepped up to the table and analyzed the striped balls and their positions on their table. "I'm going to need a tricorder for this," she muttered as she took another drink of her Mai Tai before she set it down and picked up the cue.

She sighted down the cue for orange thirteen ball and tapped the cue ball towards it, but it didn't move more than a few inches. "Maybe that was too light," she said.

Rebecca shrugged and took another sip of her beer and indicated that Cat should have another go at hitting her target ball. She was getting the hang of it for sure - it was better progress than Becky made when she first started playing. Tony Fuentes had hoped that his daughter would join him taking part in pool tournaments back in Los Angeles but that never happened.

"You're getting the hang of it" Becky said.

Cat took another drink and lined up the shot once more and this time she hit it hard enough, but the thirteen bounced off the edge of the pocket and went across the table to scatter other balls. "This is getting the hang of it?" she asked.

"At least you didn't knock a ball into the air this time" Becky replied.

She took her turn and managed to pot the red ball and then the orange ball in succession before missing the yellow ball after getting the angle wrong and it went wide of the pocket. Becky then had another drink of her Corona and stood out of the way of the table.

Becky smiled. "You'll get one"

"Bah," Cat mumbled. "If I do, it'll because I got lucky," she said before taking another drink and lining up with the eleven ball. She held her breath and checked the angle before she knocked the cue ball into it with more than a little english. The cue ball shot forward, tapped the eleven, then came spinning back to where it had originally sat, leaving Cat blinking. Meanwhile, the eleven went into the side pocket and she looked over at Becky. "How...did that happen?"

"Well done. I told you you'll get one - now see if you get another" Rebecca replied.

Becky had another sip of her drink and watched. With her bottle of Corona getting emptier she thought about getting another once Cat was ready for another drink. She still had the blue, yellow, red and maroon balls to pot.

The patterns on Cat's suit continued to change pattern, seeming to outline her curves one moment while forming a strange alien face the next to a amorphous blob the next. She took a shot at the eleven ball and sent it into the fifteen, but neither one went in. "I think I have better luck at drinking and dom-jot," she laughed.

"Practice makes perfect. We'll have another go next time we head out" Becky replied.

She took her cue and aimed for the maroon ball which she managed to pot followed by the blue and yellow one. With one more left to pot before the final ball to win the game Becky managed to misjudge the angle again and the red ball missed the pocket by some distance.

Becky giggled. "That was a crap shot"

"Pfft. All of mine are crap shots," Cat said as she tried and failed to sink the ten ball. "If I was in a battle, the odds would be against me right now." She watched the ten miss the pocket by a foot and the white ball fall into the pocket. "Does that count for anything?"

"Sadly not Cat. If you pot the cue ball your opponent gets two shots" Becky said.

After retrieving it Becky placed the cue ball inside the "D" before taking a shot at the red she missed earlier. On the second attempt she managed to get it into the pocket before missing the black ball by a few inches.

"You've got me beat by a mile," Cat said as she went over and rolled the black ball into a pocket manually. "The next round of drinks is on me. I need to study the game some more." She picked up her drink and drained it. "Speaking of...what's your poison?"

"Corona please" Rebecca replied.

Rebecca tittered to herself before rolling the rest of the balls in manually and placing the cues back. The bar was still relatively quiet but after that she was starting to feel hungry again and went over to the other side of the bar to grab a menu to see what snacks were available.

A tall handsome Betazoid male approached Becky as she went to the bar and gave her a smile. "They say the path of least resistance is no resistance at all," he said.

Rebecca was looking at the menu before she heard an unfamiliar voice address her. She put the menu down for a moment after narrowing down her choices and looked at the man with a look of curiosity on her face.

"Oh do they now? And what can I do for you Mr...?" Becky replied.

"Aaral Grexer," the man said. "I was hoping to buy you a drink. You should not have to drink alone with so many."

Becky smiled. "I wouldn't say no to a drink Mr Grexer - my friend seems to have disappeared for the time being. I'll have a Corona please"

"Aaral, please," the man said and nodded at the bartender. "Put it on my account."

Cat came strolling up a minute later. "There you are, Becky," she said with a smile as she moved to her side and reached for a hand. "I thought you ditched me." She looked at the man. "Sorry, home team advantage trumps visitors any day. Bye!" she said cheerfully.

Aaral looked from Becky to the new woman, then smirked and nodded. "Well, enjoy your drinks, ladies." He gave a nod to the bartender. "Put whatever she's having on my account, too." With that, he headed off to find better game.

Rebecca accepted the drink and watched Aaral disappear before turning to face Cat again.

"Oh - thanks Cat. Sorry for disappearing I just came to look at the menu to see what to order. He was nice though - plus it's another round of drinks for us. Do you want anything to eat before I order mine?" Rebecca said.

"No problem," Cat said as she accepted her own drink. "Nice, but I didn't want to leave you in the lurch. I had to find the ladies room. Do they have mozzarella sticks here?"

Becky smiled. "I appreciate it Cat but it wouldn't make any odds to me anyway - he isn't my type. According to this menu they do...so I make that a portion of mozzarella sticks and spicy potato wedges"

"Thanks," Cat said. "So I was right when I took your hand and made him go away?"

Rebecca ordered the food for them both with the bar attendant before replying. Truth be told she found Catalina attractive but she knew her affections were for Claudia Ainscow.

Becky shrugged. "I'm not saying anything Cat. That's for me to know and you to maybe find out"

Cat took a sip of her drink and gave a knowing smile. "Are you sure you don't want to tell me before I use my Intel wiles to sus the truth?"

Rebecca took a long sip of her drink and enjoyed the ice cold beverage. It was much needed after the last few days on the Vindex had thrown up a few unexpected surprises.

Becky smiled. "They wouldn't find very much Cat - maybe a footnote at best. I've never had a partner in my life and I don't want one either. I'm only 21 so there's plenty of time for relationships yet"

Cat watched her microexpressions while she listened to her words, then gave a smirk. "You're lying, but I'll respect your privacy. What else is there to do here?"

"Maybe I am but it's one thing you aren't going to find out Catalina. There's a dartboard over there...there's a jukebox and microphones...and there's our food which is coming. Other than that there's the observation lounge and the arboretum...although neither of those serve beer" Rebecca replied.

"Now you're tweaking my curiosity," Cat said with a laugh as she took a deep drink of her Mai Tail. "Food first, then something that I can't put someone's eye out with."

Rebecca smiled. "Oh am I? It makes a change because most people seem to think I'm anything but interesting. I'll leave our post-food activity down to you because I don't know what else you enjoy apart from sending pool balls into the air"

"You're the Captain's Yeoman," Cat said. "That should make you very interesting to more than a few people. Not many people in the enlisted ranks ever get that close to a Captain. I'm into more physical things, but we can just chill and listen to music and drink."

"Well...yeah I guess. I prefer administrative work because there's less responsibility and it's pretty easy compared to looking after the warp core. I think chilling sounds like a good idea - I'll go and find us a table to sit at. Any preference?" Rebecca asked.

"As long as I can see the door, I'm good," Cat said as she took another sip of her drink. "I'll probably never have to use that part of my training, but it may come in handy one day."

Rebecca led them over to a table that gave Catalina a good view of the door whilst she had her back to it. She had another long sip of her Corona and started to swirl the beer around inside the bottle whilst looking down at it. Truth be told she missed Claudia already and whilst she had feelings for her Becky guessed she had to wait until Claudia was ready for them to be more than just friends.

"I haven't had a chance to go over all the personnel files yet," Cat said as she watched the young woman's expressions change as she seemed deep in thought. "What's the Captain like?"

Rebecca was miles away whilst deep in her thoughts about what her and Claudia could be. Claudia was the only woman Becky had ever had true feelings for and it was hard keeping things between them professional. Talking about Claudia was hard enough but she decided it was better to do so than risk giving things away.

"Huh? Oh. She's good to work with and she's pretty approachable most of the time. Outside of work she's pretty much the same" Becky replied.

"That's good," Cat said. "The first Captain I served under when I had my senior cruise was such a stickler for rules and regulations that if you deviated even a hair from it, he was all over you. He would demand reports for everything and anything and micromanaged everyone. The Executive Officer was threatening to resign if he didn't stop soon."

"Captain Ainscow is quite relaxed but she expects the minimum standards to be met so I don't think you'll have to worry about a by the book CO here. The first officer seems like a nice guy too - I had a coffee with him the other day after I walked into him in the corridor" Rebecca replied.

"I never go for the minimum standards," Cat said as she finished half of her drink in one long swallow. "I wouldn't be doing my job if I just scratched at the surface. It's my job to find the dirt, then analyze it and see what makes it dirt, then figure out how to use it or prevent others from using it."

Rebecca shrugged. "I guess with the situation she can't be too imposing on the crew - after all it would make it look like she doesn't trust them. I know she's got issues - we all have - but she tries"

Rebecca then finished her bottle in one go and raised her hand to indicate to the barman that she wanted another one. To try and amuse herself she blew into the empty bottle to make a tune.

Cat gave a derisive snort. "At this point my issues have issues and they're all suspicious of each other," she said. "I'm trained to be paranoid."

"Well that shows you're doing your job properly Cat. I've got to admit I think my issues are a bit wary of the other...although I shouldn't think about them so much. I came out to have fun...ah look the food's here" Rebecca replied.

The bartender put the food down on the table along with another bottle of Corona for Rebecca. The Yeoman placed her beer to her left and the large bowl of potato wedges to her right. She decided to take her own advice and try to cheer up a little and think about her issues in private.

Becky smiled. "These are supposed to be amazing. They smell it so I already half-believe the guy that told me about the food in this place"

"Oh come to mama, you cheese-filled creation of wonder," Cat said as she reached for one of the mozzarella sticks. She dipped in it the marinara sauce and took a bite, looking as if she were talking to a god as she savored the flavor of it. "Real cheese! I could kiss the chef!"

Becky ate one of her wedges before too exclaiming her satisfaction at how nice the food was. She knew that Paul always liked to use proper ingredients in his recipes and thought replicated ingredients were a poor substitute and refused to use them.

"I'm sure he'd appreciate it. Paul is lovely" Rebecca giggled.

"I'm going to have to raid his kitchen," Cat said as she dipped the other half of the cheese-filled goodie and ate it. "These things are delicious. I'm going to gain twenty kilos just sitting here."

Rebecca ate a few more wedges and thought that she'd made the right choice. It was just as well there wasn't a dessert menu or Becky knew she'd be there all night.

Becky giggled. "I could eat these all night. They're amazing"

Cat devoured another mozzarella stick before she finished her Mai Tai and gestured for another. "Do you want to try a gooey delight?" she asked.

"Sure. You can try one of these if you like" Becky replied.

She offered her bowl wedges to Catalina whilst helping herself to one of the mozzarella sticks. Becky tasted it and agreed that they were extremely nice - she'd have to have some herself next time.

Becky smiled. "These are so nice. I'll have to have some next time I'm in here...whenever that is"

Cat helped herself to a wedge and tried it. "Wow...these are good, too," she said. "I need a map of the Jeffries Tubes. We're coming back here after closing and making more!"

Becky giggled. "That's something I can't help you with I'm afraid. I'm sure if you ask Paul nicely enough he'll make you some - Bovek made me pancakes for breakfast and they were the best pancakes I've ever eaten. I think...Captain Ainscow...chose her chefs very wisely"

"I've heard there's some ships that have full scale restaurants on them," Cat said. "I have a cousin who claims she's getting a contract for a dance club on a Sovereign, but I can't see Starfleet doing that the way things have been. Then again, she's in the Alpha Quadrant."

"They're lucky - although I don't think we do too badly here. The food is good and this place is pretty good and I'm sure more will be added when time allows. I wouldn't be surprised if the head chef has plans to reconfigure the mess hall at some point to make it less...mess hall-ish...I know he's asked for another hydroponics bay due to the demand for fresh ingredients" Becky replied.

"Maybe people should start growing things in their quarters if they want to up the supply of fresh vegetables and herbs," Cat said. "I had a roommate at the Academy who did that for three years. She had the market cornered with the other cadets."

Rebecca nodded. "It wouldn't be such a bad idea. I know the Captain grows her own fruit and has encouraged others who want a personal supply of fruit to save space but the main hydroponics bay still getting full. I guess that's the problem with feeding 800 people every day with fresh ingredients. I've got a supply of tea in my quarters...although that won't last forever. The chef has got more than anyone on the ship but that's for special occasions apparently"

"Two or three square feet can be enough for one person easily and if you aren't enlisted, you have the space in your quarters to do just that," Cat said. "I have blueprints for what my roommate called micro-gardening."

"I should have a go myself. If you could send them over I'll see if I can put it together...although DIY hasn't been my strong point so it'd probably end up looking like something that isn't for growing my own fruit" Becky replied.

"It's so simple that anyone can do it and once you have the system constructed, it's self maintaining," Cat said as she finished her drink.

Rebecca giggled. "Believe me...I couldn't put a shelf up with it falling on me right after I put up. Besides...I won't have anyone to do DIY for anyway so I've never really felt it was a high priority. I might pass and see if I can get the Captain to give me some in exchange for tea bags. I think that's a fair exchange"

"Umm...I think you've had too much to drink," Cat said. "DIY means Do It Yourself, not for someone else."

"Probably...but I meant do it yourself for someone else to save them doing it - like putting a shelf up or whatever for my partner - but as I said - I won't have a 'someone else' because it's far too early in my life for a relationship...I need another drink - you want another?" Becky replied.

Cat raised an eyebrow at Becky's comment, but shook her head. "Not right now," she said. "I'm going to hold off for a few."

Becky knew she'd probably had enough but she felt like having one more then going to bed early. Her feelings were harder to repress when she'd had a few and the last thing she needed and wanted was her feelings for Claudia getting out.

"Fair enough" Becky said.

She indicated to the barman that she wanted another and waited for it to be brought over.

Cat looked around and smiled at a young man who was looking their way. "Looks like we have some more attention, Beckaroo," she said. "You may like flying solo, but I don't."

Feeling on the verge of tears she decided it was time to make a quick exit back to her quarters. Not only that but the only attention she wanted was from Claudia and she was finding it harder and harder to keep her distance until Claudia was ready.

"Be my guest. I'll see you whenever" Rebecca said.

Rebecca stood up from her chair and walked over to the approaching barman and almost snatched the bottle of Corona out of his hand before disappearing out of D15 and towards the turbolift back to her quarters.

Cat watched the obviously confused young woman leave with her lies and shrugged, then ordered another drink and headed towards the young man with a smile.

 

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