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Ensign Alana Larson - Sixteen Seconds


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(( Flynn's Beach House - Little Risa - Starbase 118 Commercial Sector ))
 
Larson: How's the water? 
 
Trel'lis: Very refreshing and cool!
 
Larson: :: Smiling. :: Sounds like I need to start being in the water then. 
 
Larson: Do we know what kind of break it is here? 
 
Trel'lis: I think Mister Fynn would know that better than any of us, to be honest. ::shrugs::
 
Whittaker: :: to the group :: Ahoy there! 
 
Trel'lis: Ahoy there too, Commander!
 
:: Looking up at the sound the voice she noticed the XO standing up to his ankles in the water. :: 
 
Larson: Commander.
 
Whittaker: :: genially :: How goes the surfing? 
 
Larson: :: Grinning. :: I think I'll take that as an order to go find out sir.
 
:: It sounded like this was beach break out here, hopefully that meant it would be producing some nice clean faced waves to ride. She could hear some conversation continuing behind her as she started to paddle out. 
 
Based on where the waves appeared to breaking it looked like it would be only a minute or so paddling to get to the line up. It was nice to get back into the familiar rhythm of paddling out, on her holodeck program she had set up similar to how the events she had competed in were set up where surfer would get a tow out to the line up rather than having to paddle out. While the tow out was nice and did allow for more time spent riding waves paddling always gave her a chance to let the adrenaline rush from the previous wave fade a little bit or in this case enjoy the anticipation of the first wave of the day. 
 
When she was about half way out some waves started to roll through threatening to push her back to the beach and undo all her paddling. Grabbing hold of the sides of her board just in front of her she pushed the nose of the board underwater, straightening her arms she leaned forward helping push more of her board underwater. Keeping her right knee on the back of the board to help push it down farther. Taking a deep breath she ducked under the surface as the wall of white water approached, leaving only a small patch of bubbles where she had been. Time always seemed to slow down under a wave and today was no exception. All she could see was was some light filtering through the water interspersed with clouds of bubbles, and her ears were filled with the muted crashing roar of a wave breaking directly over her. As the wave rolled through she pushed down on the back of her board to go from nose down to nose up. As soon as the nose was pointed up it offered no resistance as it eagerly overcame it forced submersion. As her head broke the surface on the other side of the wave she released her grip on the board and resumed the steady rhythm of paddling. 
 
As another wave approached she went through the same motions, it was the same way every time exactly like her parents had taught her, all those years ago, as the thought went through her head. She could even hear her Dad's voice from back when he had initially taught her to duck dive.
 
Nose down. 
 
Take a breath. 
 
Hold it, don't forget to hold it. 
 
You are now under the water. 
 
You are still holding it right?
 
Keep the board steady. 
 
Wait for the wave to pass. 
 
Kick through bring the nose up. 
 
After a short while of paddling she made it out to the line up, the point just past where the swells would break into surf-able waves. As she floated up and down in the swells she slicked her wet hair back out of her face. Looking towards the shore she could see some of the others paddling out as well, and could hear some of the sounds coming from those still on the beach. The first few swells that passed by were all close outs, they broke all at once into un-rideable white water, luckily it looked there was a bigger set on the way. It also seemed as though an offshore breeze was picking up which would hopefully help the waves form cleaner faces and possibly even lead to some barreling. :: 
 
Larson: Looks like we've got some good waves coming.
 
Greyson/Anyone else who paddled out: ?
 
:: Letting the first wave of the set pass underneath her she began paddling hard towards the shore attempting to get up to the same speed in time for the second wave to break. It looked like it was going to develop into a big bomb. Reaching the apex of the wave she gathered her legs beneath her and went from lying on the board to standing in one fluid motion. For one brief period of time she felt weightless as her board dropped into the same plane as the face of the wave. She could feel the adrenaline pumping through her veins as time slowed to a crawl. Looking up she could see the rest of the beach goers moving about on the beach or in the water, then suddenly all of that stopped existing as time started to catch up to her. It always seemed to speed up a little between first dropping in on a wave to getting to the pocket of the wave, the point between the clean surface of the wave and the white water. With the roar of the wave filling her ears and the wind in her face she began picking up speed leaving the pocket. Leaning into the wave once she she reached down with her left hand and grabbed the outside rail (side) of her board. Quickly she  she pushed her right foot down on the back of the board and brought the nose around with her left foot. Now quickly climbing up the face of the wave she had to tell herself not to turn to soon. 
 
Wait for it. 
 
Wait for it. 
 
NOW! 
 
Quickly bringing the nose of the board left with her feet she twisted her torso with her arms outstretched to help quickly snap the board around. Her long blonde hair whipping around in protest at the sudden direction change. She had hit the top of the wave almost perfectly just under the lip sending a large spray of water up and over the back of the wave. The fins of her surfboard left the water letting her board slip sideways on the top of the wave for just a moment before they re-entered and grabbed  straightening her back out. Gaining speed down the wave face she turned right, straight back into the pocket. 
 
The section of wave in front of her was starting to collapse, turning she climbed back up the face of the wave. Rather than making a big carving turn and throwing water everywhere she just climbed and floated up and over the collapsing section on the peak of the wave, she dropped about three feet in the air back into the new pocket as the section fully closed out underneath her. 
 
Making another carving turn to the right and coming up just under the peak of the wave she snapped her board around again with the help if out stretched arms but generating much less spray with out a lip to the wave this time. 
 
She made a few whimsical turns on the face of the wave before bringing it back to the pocket. It seemed as though the offshore breeze had picked up as the lip was starting to curl around more and more. pumping the front of her board up and down with her left foot she picked up speed as the wall of water began to curl around her. It was as if someone had flipped a switch she was suddenly surrounded by water on all sides. Turning to be more parallel with the wave face she raced towards the opening at the far end. 
 
The crescendo of the water feeling as though it was coming from within rather, or maybe that was her un-suppressible shriek of joy. This, this was what she lived for, the ultimate in adrenaline rushes. Racing down a tube of water on a small board, whoever had first thought doing this was a good idea must have been thought insane, but they were the good kind of insane the same sort of insane Alana herself was. 
 
All around her was a wonderful blue turquoise color wonderfully patterned by the rays of light from the stations artificial sun replacement. Sticking out her arm she let her fingers drag through the surface of the wave. She could feel a light spray coming off of the wave all around her, but it was the sensation of speed the captivated her. The speed of the water moving around her, the speed at which the wave was moving her towards the beach, and the speed at which she was flying down the barrel of the wave. Not that she was thinking of that at the moment, no she would think about all the velocities of everything when she was back in the science offices or labs, for now it was about experiencing it. The wave was beginning to spit spray from behind her down the tube as it started to close out on her.
 
As she came out the end of the tube the rest of the wave collapsed behind her, she had been hoping that the face would open up again and she could squeeze in another turn before she hit the beach. As it was the beach was significantly closet than it had been the last time she saw it, close enough that there wouldn’t have been time for another turn. She had to kick out now or risk running aground in an area she didn’t know if it was just sandy it wasn’t usually a problem but if there was a reef or rocks under the water it could easily damage her or her board. Of the two she was more worried about her board, and her medical record showed it, she had helped build it back home in Hawaii, and it never seemed to quite the same after any repair to it. 
 
As the white water consumed the rest of the face it was looking like she wouldn’t be able to just kick out over the back of the wave as she normally preferred, instead she would have step, or jump, off her board. It wasn’t that she didn’t enjoy exiting a wave this way but it was a lot quicker trip back to the lineup going over the top, and the whole more  chance of hurting her self or damaging her board. Taking a quick breath she stepped off her board to the left and quickly felt the familiar feeling of the water arresting her momentum followed by a short sharp tug on her right ankle as the leash prevented the board from floating in to anyone. Apparently back when leashes had first been introduced a lot of people had been resistant to them Alana had never quite fully understood why the skegs (fins) acted a lot like a set of knives sticking out from the bottom of the board. Even with leashes there was still the potential to get run over by a stray board, even your own board could get you in a wipe out she had seen it all too many times. It had never stopped any of her friends from surfing nor had the possibility of it ever made her hesitate at the chance to get out in the water and rip up a wave.
 
As soon as she had stepped off the board her world became chaos filled with bubbles and the disturbed sand from the bottom. It was shallower than she had thought it would be and quickly bounced off the bottom, a little harder than she would have liked. Reaching out with her hands she found the cord connecting her to her surfboard and followed it back up to the surface. Her pull on the cord causing the back end to dip into the water and stand the board up on a forty five degree angle. Taking a breath as she surfaced she saw that she wasn't from the group where she had started out she paddled over.
 
Drifting to a stop as she came up to the group she sat back on her board. The only thing that could have made that ride better was the iconic music for the opening heat of the day at Bells Beach blaring out over the water. A big smile started to form on her face. :: 
 
Larson: :: The smile had reached her eyes by now. She looked towards the XO. :: I'd say the surfing is excellent sir. Are you planning on getting your feet wet out there? :: Looking at him up to his ankles in water already. :: Or rather the rest of you?
 
Whittaker: ?
 
Larson: How about the rest of you?
 
Trel'lis/Halzar/Flynn/Greyson/Falcon: ?
 
:: It looked as though the others who had paddled out with her had caught waves as well. It wasn't long before the ended up around about where she had surfaced not long ago. She waved towards them. :: 
 
Larson: Sounds good, I'm going to head back out enjoy.
 
:: With that she turned and began the long paddle back out. It was about a two minute paddle out for what had been about a sixteen second ride. Well it had lasted for only sixteen seconds according to a clock but as with every good wave she had rode,  time slowed to a fraction of it's normal self while riding it. :: 
 
Larson: :: Meeting up with Greyson on the paddle out. The smile was still plastered to her face, it had been a really good ride, even if it hadn't been surfing had almost always brought a hard to get rid of smile to her face. :: Nice wave man, you really shredded it out there.
 
 
 
Ensign Alana Larson
Science Officer
StarBase 118 Ops
C238805DG0
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