USS Pioneer NCC - 74757


Docked at Starbase Sirius
Speed: Docked
Shields: Nominal
Hull: Nominal
Systems: All Systems Nominal

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Finding the truth

Posted on Tue Sep 15th, 2020 @ 3:10pm by Ensign Zaire Byrne
Edited on on Tue Sep 15th, 2020 @ 3:21pm

Mission: Episode 10 - New Home, Same Pioneers
Location: Zaire’s Quarters
Timeline: MD007 1600 hrs
2109 words - 4 OF Standard Post Measure

Zaire sat in his room, collecting his thoughts. He needed to place a subspace call to his parents shortly but first he was trying to collect his thoughts and plan what he wanted to say to them. No matter what he felt they were still his parents and he owed them that respect.

He wasn’t angry, any respectful Betazed son or daughter knew their parents would be searching for a potential spouse for them. An arranged marriage was to be suspected. That wasn’t what bothered him. It was the feeling that they had come to his graduation and to see him off and had known that Zaire was promised in marriage to Kalina who was also serving on the ship. He would have expected to have been told ahead of time as he was certain Kalina did, so they could find out what they could about their intended ahead of time. It was like a blind date engagement.

His parents had been overjoyed, not just proud and he kept seeing something in their eyes that he couldn’t explain and now he knew what it was. All they had had to do was tell him, he would have respected that more than leaving it to a stranger to tell them. Commander O’Flannagain had handled it well but even he had been uncomfortable and questioned why he was given the duty.

Zaire gave up trying to work through this, he initiated the subspace call and waited for it to connect. A smile crossed his face when his younger brother, Taran came on the screen.

"Hey baby brother," Zaire teased him with a grin. I was hoping to get a moment to see how you and Tesna were doing."

"I'm doing good," Taran said with a frown. "And stop with the baby crap, I turn seventeen next month." He had always been referred to as the baby of the family. "Tesna told me to say hello for her, she is doing well in school."

"Give her my regards," Zaire replied. "It sounds like nothing has changed much." Two Betazed women in the same house wasn't good. Soon,, Tesna would be heading to the academy to pursue her own career.

Zaire smiled to himself. He supposed he should be concerned about what was going on with his sister and mother but it was more than likely over what Tesna wanted to plan for her future and Zaire knew their mother would respect his sister more if she stood up for herself so he planned to stay out of it. As in most homes, his mother was the driving force for decision making and in their case even more so. His dad simply agreed with her in all things.

"You still planning to head to the academy when your finished with school," Zaire asked him. Taran had a few years ahead of him but it was good to be on track.

"Yes," Taran grinned. "But I am no longer interested in security." He shook his head. "I signed up for courses to aid me into going into engineering. I have this friend whose Dad is retired from Starfleet and he has really been encouraging." Taran looked away. "Here comes mother, I'll talk with you later. Be safe, Zaire."

"Keep at it," Zaire replied with a grin of his own. "You can do anything you want to. I am here for you." He wanted to encourage his brother to be happy.

Zaire took a deep breath and waited for his mother to sit down. It hadn't been that long since he saw her at graduation so it wasn't like they needed to catch up. "Where is father?" he asked her. Zaire had thought they would both be there to speak with him.
"He is busy writing," Shantelle replied with a smile. "How are you settling in on your ship?" There was a light in her eyes that told Zaire she was waiting for his news.

"Funny thing," Zaire replied with a sigh. "I got on board and was immediately called to meet with Commander O'Flannagain." He stared at her as he paused. Even if he was irritated, she was still his mother and he was raised to be respectful. "It seems an arranged marriage has been made for me and my fiance is on board, you wouldn't know anything about that, would you?"

"Zaire," Shantelle spoke firmly. She could see the irritation on his face. "You knew this was coming, sooner rather than later. It is a match that we could not turn down. You will be married to Ambassador Solwick's niece! Do you realize what an honor that is for you. Kalina could have any match she wanted, there are many parents who would do anything to have their son arranged to marry her."

"So it is in fact, already a done deal," Zaire replied quietly. "You and her aunt arranged this marriage without telling either of us. How do you think I feel, hearing about it from one of my command officers and then having to tell her!"

"Now Zaire," his mother said with conviction. "You two are highly compatible." Shantelle had a look on her face that told him she wasn't giving on this. "How are things going with the two of you so far?"

Zaire took a deep breath. "Honestly, I don't know. We spent lunch together and agreed that the next step was to contact our famiies to make certain this wasn't some mistake." He shook his head. "Especially, since I had just left you and father at my graduation." He paused for a moment. "You could have told me then."

"I didn't want to do anything to tarnish your graduation," Shantelle explained. "I almost told you when your first assignment fell through but your excitement over this assignment made it worth it."

"That is another thing," Zaire responded. "How am I supposed to feel, knowing you or Kalina's aunt pulled strings and got me transferred to the Pioneer? And don't bother denying it. It dimishes my assignment here. I wasn't chosen because of my abilities but so that I would be where Kalina is."

"You don't think Kalina's aunt looked at your files," Shantelle said with a laugh. "She wouldn't have pushed it if you weren't fit for the position. You need to stop being insulted and embrace your future, with Kalina." She looked at him with determination in her eyes. "You knew that an arranged marriage was coming and this was the best compatible match."

Zaire didn't say anything for a moment. He just sat there and thought about what she had said. "You're right, mother." Zaire also knew that his parents had known he would not embarrass them. "It isn't about the arranged marriage it is about how you handled it."

"She is a beautiful and intelligent woman," his mother spoke up. "Perfect for you." As much as she wanted this union, Shantelle would never have agreed had Zaire not been compatible. She wanted him to be happy in his marriage.

"That will be my decision along with Kalina's," Zaire replied. He wasn't going to walk away from the arrangement. His parents had agreed to it and he would never disgrace them that way. Plus, he was attracted to Kalina and felt a connection. It was something he had never felt before nor could put into words

"You will not end it,' Shantelle said forcefully. "Your father and I agreed."

Zaire didn't feel right about speaking about where he and Kalina were going from here. He hadn't spoken to her and wouldn't until the next day...hopefully. And add to that he felt a little satisfaction in not giving his mother any hope or information. "I can't say what will happen. That will be between me and my fiance." He smiled at his mother. "I will let you know when we have made a decision, between the two of us."
"Zaire..." his mother began.

"Mother," Zaire interrupted her. "If Kalina and I are going forward with this, it needs to be our relationship, based on us and not our parents." He shook his head. "I know what is expected of me and you have stressed how fortunate I am to have attained a marriage with Ambassador Solwick's niece but that won't be the deciding factor for me. I don't care if she come from the worst or best Betazed family. We will be moving forward on our terms. The two of us, your interference will only create problem for us." He smiled then at her, as he knew he had her now. "If your hopes are in this working, then you need to leave us alone."
Zaire watched as his mother took a moment to think about what he said. She wasn't happy with his insistence that she leave them be but she was considering what he had said.

"You will let me know how you two are doing," Shantelle said finally.

"When Kalina and I are ready to," Zaire responded. "Her feelings and concerns are foremost important for me." He paused. "And if and I say "if" we decide that this is in fact what we want, Kalina will be making the wedding decisions herself." Betazed women were the head of the home and they had no problem making their wishes known. He would stand with Kalina when that time came and he was warning his meddling mother now.

"Of course," his mother replied with a smile.

Zaire wasn't fooled by her quick response. It was the smile she used that said she had agreed but had no intention of carrying through. She would find a way to try and be involved.

"I need to go," Zaire said after a moment. "Give my love to the family. I'll be in touch when I can."

"We love you Zaire," Shantelle said with conviction. "We want the best for you that we can give you." I was the truth, when they had been approached by the ambassador, they had been shocked and pleased. As parents, they wanted what was best for their children.

Zaire sat as the call ended. He took a moment and sent a message to Kalina, letting her know he had spoken with his parents and hoped that they would be able to get together once she had spoken with her Aunt and talk about where they would go from here. Yes, they were compatible but there were things that only the two of them could answer. Did she want children? Did she want them right away or to wait? Some things were taken for granted but sometimes it was the small things, like which side of the bed a person slept on could be a really big deal.

Truthfully, he looked forward to spending more time with Kalina. He wanted to get to know her better and see how things went. It wasn't going to be easy with them both starting out their careers. Being on weird shifts and trying to juggle time together. His biggest concern was not knowing how she felt about the situation, what her aunt had said and what she wanted to do next.

Zaire shook his head. He could sit around all evening and think about it but he wouldn't know a thing until Kalina responded to his message and that for sure wasn't happening until after she talked to her aunt. He hoped it happened and quickly. She had seemed more blown away by this than he had. Zaire knew a part of it was having her fiance tell her, no time to prepare or to even think about how she would feel. He was just there and she had to react on a moments notice.

Zaire got up and headed to get a drink. He got ready for bed and then lay down, deciding he really needed to put this all away for now and not think about it. He had to meet with the science chief the next day and then he would be busy spending his first day learning a lot. He needed to be well rested and focused so that he could give the best impression to those he would be working with.

Before he closed his eyes and went to sleep, he visioned Kalina and smiled. He silently hoped that she had a restful night and that her first day was a good one. Then, Zaire turned over and relaxed, fallling into a deep sleep.

A post by;

Ensign Zaire Byrne
Science Officer, USS Pioneer


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