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Girls Night

Posted on Tue Aug 7th, 2018 @ 10:24pm by Lieutenant Meilin Jiang & Lieutenant Mara Ricci & Lieutenant JG Rizena Virodin PhD & Lieutenant JG Devin Ward & Ensign T'Niam & Alexandra Alvarez PhD & Petty Officer 2nd Class Janvi Ogden

Mission: Preflight
Location: Holodeck 2
Timeline: MD63 | 2000

-Holo-deck 2, 2000 hours-

Devin had sent out some invitations to the various ladies on the ship. She kept it short and simple.

Subject: Girl's Night
Reason: Fun
Location: Holo-deck 2 2000 hours
Dress code: Whatever you are comfortable in around others.
Food: supplied
Drink: supplied

The spread on the table was varied from known Terren dishes to selection from other worlds. Same applied to the drinks various teas, lemonades, few liquors for those that wished it was synthohol to be sure everyone could go on duty if that it where they were headed afterwards. Coffees and even some sodas. The only thing she made herself were the soft pastries, and doughnuts some had filling some did no.

Devin was dressed in an off duty outfit of royal blue and crimson top and a skirt that flowed loosely around her knees in black. Her shoes were simple black flat soled sandals. Her hair was in a loose french twist curling down her back to her knees.

Rizena entered the holodeck. She was wearing a wrap patterned with a tessellating triangular design in shades of reds and yellows, with a matching headband. In contrast to those bright colours, her slacks were a stately dark grey. She paused to take in the room, her eyes lingering over the table’s goodies, before approaching Devin.

“Hi there,” Rizena said with a smile, “You must be Devin. I’m Rizena, and I see you’ve already met our mutual friend, Chocolate Donut.”

"Chocolate anything you mean but yes I am Devin, welcome to the holo-deck!" She said with a cheeky grin, "Help yourself to whatever you fancy, Rizena! I have extras so no need to worry."

Rizena laughed. “Oh, that’s a dangerous offer!” she said, taking a plate and beginning to sample the spread.

Devin laughed softly, "Living dangerously is part of my job anyway so why not add it to the fun stuff too?"

"Of course, I remember seeing you're in the Intelligence department," Rizena said, "So what does a Federation secret agent get up to on her days off?"

Devin smiled cheekily, "Well that depends on if I have any friends to call on for fun if not I tend to go swimming or run a parkour course on the holo-deck or through which ever ship or station I am assigned as long as I don't mess up anyone's work I can usually get away with it once or twice." She would also be found in the ship or station lounge kitchen cooking but not too often. "I get into other projects as well but I try to not start what I can't easily finish in case work comes up." She raised her eyebrows gently, "What about you? What do you do for fun outside of work?"

“Outside of work? When I really need to switch my mind off for a bit… swashbuckling holonovels,” Rizena said conspiratorially, striking a fencing pose that nearly toppled the pastries on her plate, “I also practice Araq’ra sword fighting to fit the narrative and keep fit. I’m not expecting to survive a fight with a Klingon or anything, but it looks impressive. I’m currently playing through The Rogue in the Iron Tower, set six hundred years ago on the Hral Peninsula on Bolarus.” She rolled the "hr" in "Hral" like she was trying to clear something from her throat.

“You know, if you’re interested, I’d welcome a companion for the next chapter of the story. I don’t know how well your ‘parkour’ would fit with the story, but it’s not particularly historically accurate anyway,” she added, as the holodeck doors swished open. “Let me know later, it looks like your other guests are arriving.”

Devin gave a delighted laugh, "I would love that, I know a few various swords arts, but am certainly no were near an expert but it sounds like great fun." Devin paused and added with a playful wink, "I am sure I can find a way to sneak some parkour into the story if it needs some extra flare." she said and nodded as the others started to arrive.

Introversion did not preclude one from craving companionship, so Mara decided to attend said girls' night. Dressed in her favorite party time outfit of a red halter top, artfully ripped jeans and red heals, she glanced around as she entered the room and was dismayed to see that she didn't know either of the girls there. She smiled nervously at them. "Hi," she said softly.

Devin turned around and looked up at the lady in her favorite color top. "Hello and welcome, make yourself comfortable, I am Devin!" She added with a gentle smile.

Mara have Devin a grateful smile. “I’m Mara,” she said with a friendly grin. “Thanks for inviting me.”

Devin nodded, "Best way to get to know folks have a party and see who shows up!" Devin said lightly joking, "There's plenty of food and lots to choose from for drinks, make yourself at home Mara!"

Making a late appearance, Meilin stepped through the doors light and graceful in her ceremonial attire.

Behind her both Alexandra, clad in her usual blouse and skirt, looked her subordinate up and down as Janvi approached. She made a show of allowing the younger woman precede her into the room, offering a grin as she did so. "Are those your pyjamas, yoeman?"

Janvi clutched the baking tray closer to herself, glancing between Meilin's elegant traditionalism and Alexandra's smart-casual. "I...um...yes, m'am. I thought the invitation said to dress for 'comfort'."

"Relax, Janvi, we're off duty." Alexandra laughed again.

Janvi blushed, her dark skin sheening slightly with nerves. She offered a small smile. "Sometimes I think if I could work in these pjs I would."

Alexandra laughed. "If I could make that the diplomatic directive I would."

The young yeoman looked between the other women, already there, officers all, and took a steadying breath. She picked out the red-headed host who laughed with such an easy grace and offered the tray with a smile. "Banana bread." She smiled. "I was always told never to arrive empty-handed."

Devin smiled as she approached the trio of ladies, "Welcome, oh my that banana bread looks amazing!" She accepted the tray. "Come in everyone and make yourselves at home." Devin grinned cheekily, "I almost did say pajama party but I didn't want to push my luck, maybe next time? I am Devin."

Janvi smiled. "Janvi."

From behind her Alexandra offered a wave. "Alexandra...I guess this means I'll have to replicate some pyjamas for next time!" She laughed, eying the table full of edibles. "This looks amazing."

Devin grinned brightly, "Pleasure to meet you both there's plenty to choose from and I am sure this amazing banana bread will be disassembled before showing up on our collective hips but then we only live once!" She lead the way to the table with the food and set the tray of banana bread down beside the doughnuts. And moved some forks a bit closer to let folks grab slices.

From by the table, Rizena fought the urge to rush over and hug everyone. A stereotypical Bolian hello could be overwhelming for many cultures, she knew, and though the air of the gathering was overall quite casual, there were a few who still seemed a little hesitant, the woman in the white robe and the woman in the damaged red pants in particular. Instead, she took a slice of the banana bread and munched with a slight grin as she watched the others begin to mingle.

Circling the other ladies as they talked, Meilin took in the lay of the land. Several department heads and other key officials on board were all gathered in one place. She suddenly felt very vulnerable. Habitual discipline made her perform several hand mudras until someone deigned to greet her.

Devin walked over after a moment bringing a tray with a few different teas on it. "Are you alright? " She had hoped everyone would be comfortable talking with each other but perhaps they hadn't been part of the crew much longer than herself.

"Quite well." Meilin offered her a subdued smile. "How are you?" Proper manners were required until they were made more familiar.

"Quite well thank you, I am Devin I brought over some teas if you might like some but if not there's plenty of other choices at the table." Devin said lightly trying to let the elegant dressed lady be at ease for the gathering.

"My name is Meilin." Meilin gave the tea a sniff. Too sweet, but she appreciated the gesture. "Thank you," she said, taking a small sip.

Devin nodded lightly, "You're welcome and feel free to try anything you like." She wasn't certain if Meilin was being polite or honest just yet either way Devin was doing her best to be a good hostess

Meanwhile Janvi made a pointed effort to escape her superior, something that Alexandra didn't seem to mind, as she wandered in the direction of the Bolian who seemed as interested in the chocolate donuts as she was herself. The yeoman's eyes wandered between the developing groups of women chatting around the table and, after a minute, she stepped forward to pour herself a glass of lemonade.

Which Mara reached for at the same time. "Sorry," she said with a grin at the girl. "Go ahead."

Janvi smiled at the engineer, picking up a glass and filling it, but handing it to Mara instead. "Lemonade is one of my favourites." After Mara took the glass from her, Janvi picked up another and began to fill it as well. "I'm Janvi...I don't think we've met."

"Thanks," said Mara, accepting the lemonade. "I'm Mara. Good to meet you."

Rizena chuckled at the mix-up, before pushing an empty glass of her own forward. “And I’m Rizena, or Riz if you'd prefer. Pleasure to meet you both. Janvi, you brought the bread, yes? Was it your own recipe? Something that reminds you of somewhere?”

Devin looked around at the ladies in the room, "I want to thank everyone for joining me this evening! I didn't make a music selection because I figured it would be best to let everyone have a say in the background noise. So if anyone has preferences or any music they don't wish to hear please let me know."

"Anything with a saxophone," Mara replied before she could stop herself. She then grinned sheepishly around at them all and sipped her lemonade.

"That's the squeaky one, isn't it?" Rizena asked, musical instruments not really being her forte.

Devin smiled and asked the computer to start a selection. "Like that or more up beat?" Devin asked to Mara and then turned to Rizena "I think it only squeaks when played out of tune but I may be wrong."

“Just played poorly, really," Mara amended. “Or if the reed is bad. Or if it’s out of adjustment. But, a good player can overcome an out of adjustment horn and a bad reed and still sound fair.”

Meilin listened to the banter. Most of it was uninteresting to her, save for the people themselves. They were personnel to whom she must grow accustomed. If it meant being bored by idle talk, then that was a small price to pay.

At hearing Mara's dissertation about wind instruments, however, Meilin had an idea spark in her mind.

"Computer, activate program Jiang-1-9." She held out her hands to receive a materialized bamboo Dizi which she set to her mouth. After pausing to wet her lips and catch a few bars of the jazz music, she joined in accompaniment.

Mara's face broke into a huge grin. "That's fantastic!" she exclaimed. Truly, she had never heard that instrument played in such a fashion before. She would hazard a guess that it never had.

Devin nodded n agreement with Mara's words "Meilin that's is beautiful." She looked at the others in the room with a playful smile as she added teasingly, "If we have enough that can play music maybe we should make our own band?"

"I.. I have a saxophone," Mara offered. "I'm decent at it." She was, of course, being modest. She was actually a very gifted player, but she wasn't one to boast. And besides, as they say, you are your own worst critic.

“You should play!” Rizena said, by her side, “You can’t be worse than me. I’d have trouble playing a bell.”

Devin grinned cheekily, "I can sorta play the piano. I don't know any jazz music yet but I can try to learn. If we are actually serious about this for off duty fun pursuits?"

Meilin halted at that, and let her instrument dissolve back into scattered photons. "I... usually play alone."

"I prefer playing alone so when I mess up I don't get to embarrassed. You played a bit for us so ... Only fair." Devin gave a cheeky grin and asked the computer to bring in a grand piano, she sat down. Devin regarded everyone then looked down at the ivory keys. She bit the inside of her lip and started playing one of the few songs she could it was from a very old video game that she just adored the musical score to.

The holodeck door swished open to admit a Vulcan woman, dressed in a light grey robe from her homeworld that was easy to move in. T'Niam's face gave no hint of her displeasure at being late; it would be illogical to dwell upon it. She found the group watching as one of the intelligence officers began playing a Human instrument, and she approached quietly so as not to disturb her. She nodded at Meilin, making her way to the Tactical Officer. "Forgive my tardiness," she said quietly.

Meilin genuinely smiled at T'Niam. "There is nothing to forgive. Parties are the social counterbalance for work performance and punctuality." Amusement played at the edge of her smile.

A flicker of a smile touched T'Niam's lips. "It appears I have been deprived of the opportunity to investigate the musical prowess of my fellows," the Vulcan observed. "May I inquire as to who has already played?"

"So far, just me." Meilin stiffened her jaw against a demure blush of her cheeks. She gestured toward the crowd. "But a few of the others were just offering to favor us with a performance."

T'Niam observed the soft pink hue of Meilin's cheeks and refrained from commenting on it. Humans were sensitive about such things. Nonetheless, she blinked in surprise. "I am grieved to hear it," she said smoothly. "Perhaps you will favour me with a performance when we are at further leisure."

The compliment made Meilin purse her lips and stand a bit straighter. "That can be arranged."

"You honor me, Meilin, I thank you," T'Niam replied quietly, then glanced around the room. "I am not familiar with everyone present. It appears I missed the introductions. Are you familiar with the social etiquette for such a situation?"

Meilin nodded. "Typically the host is to greet you and then make introductions. Failing that, some humans prefer to announce themselves." Her tone indicated a personal distaste for the latter.

"Ah. Shall we await their attention then?" T'Niam queried. "It would most likely be rude to disturb our current performer."

With a raised eyebrow, Meilin inclined her ear. "I think... that might be the holodeck." She looked at the other women before giggling at T'Niam.

T'Niam's lips quirked at Meilin's observation, and she mimicked the motion. "I believe you may be correct," she agreed. "My knowledge of the emotional responses of artificial intelligence is limited. Perhaps this would be an ideal opportunity to observe."

"Not much difference to observe so far," Meilin quipped under her breath.

"Perhaps it requires additional stimuli," T'Niam suggested.

"By all means," Meilin said, her head bobbing with an air of challenge, "show us what you've got."

Grateful for the distraction, Mara happily melted back into the background. Perhaps someday, if she felt comfortable enough and if her saxophone was nearby and if she was really in the mood to play, she might oblige, but for now, she wasn't about to try it. No. Today, she would just listen.

Devin stepped away from the piano and noticed that another lady had entered she asked the computer to remove the piano and made her way over to meet the Vulcan woman. She gave a cheeky grin as she approarched the new comer and Meilin. She noticed that Mara had taken off for a more quiet corner to likely watch the room. She would check with her after she had met the new comer properly. "Good evening glad you could make it to this very impromtu girls night." She said as she looked up at the Vulcan woman beside Meilin.

T'Niam regarded Meilin with the demeanour of one who was aware she was being teased, and quite expertly at that. "Based on my experience of Human culture, it occurs to me that it may not be wise to taunt a computer-based intelligence. I have been told on numerous occasions that 'Skynet is real'." Then an unfamiliar face drew closer, and T'Niam inclined her head in greeting. "I apologise for my tardy arrival. I am Counselor T'Niam," she introduced herself smoothly.

Devin laughed softly, and shook her head, "Only time I count late arrival is when the party is over, my anme is Devin, I work in intelligence." she said with a cheeky grin, than added, "Far as I can tell folks are still enjoying themselves. So no need to apologize, help yourself to some food and drink and if you want to, we were talking about music and preferences and what some of us play to a degree or another."

While the other ladies were talking, Meilin took note of waiter meandering between the crowds with a tray of champagne flutes in hand. The man was bald with a curled mustache and grassy soul patch, striking one of the most flamboyant Van Dyke goatees that Meilin had seen. They certainly drew the focus away from his eyes, and yet it was the eyes which had given him away.

"Excuse me," Meilin said, sidling up to him. "I don't believe you were invited to this party... Mr. Spires."

She grasped the hand which held the champagne tray by the wrist, twisted it in a fluid motion, and kicked the back of his knee to force him to a kneeling position. The fabric of her gown swished with her movements. Properly knelt before her, Meilin reached beneath his collar and ripped off the mask to expose a sweaty embedded journalist.

"I'll be taking this," she said, removing a recording device discovered through a quick pat-down.

"I like it as rough as anybody, Lieutenant, but if you wanna' go any further maybe we oughtta' take this behind closed doors." Stephen grunted as Meilin forced his hands behind his back with deft joint locks.

Mara rolled her eyes. “Oooo, now you know I play the saxophone,” she mocked. “Juicy gossip, that.”

Devin eyed the person Meilin had kneeling curiously, "I can't decide if I am impressed or disappointed with such a tactic." She wasn't sure if he posed a threat or a nuisance?

“Be impressed,” Mara advised Devin, not taking her eyes from Spires. “He’s just some dickwad reporter trying to get information that he has no right to know.”

Meilin smirked at Stephen in victorious satisfaction. "Give me a moment, ladies, while I take out the trash."

Ironically, as Meilin dragged Spires out the door, Mara cheered the loudest.

 

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