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Lt. Katsim Peri - "Try To Act Natural"


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@Alora DeVeau is an excellent writer, this post being just one amazing example out of many, showing how descriptive writing can bring characters, scenes and emotions to life. Definitely a role model! ❤️

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(( The Inkhawmna, Yansamin Anchorage, Outskirts of the Esh-O star system ))


Despite being on duty, Peri was not in uniform.  In accordance with
Commander Etan’s order, she had elected to dress in simple, civilian
clothing.  A simple shirt with a high v-neck of a medium green was
overlain by a laced overs shirt of dark green. Her slacks were of the
same green hue. The very Bajoran style matched part of her heritage, but
unknowingly punctuated the other part of her heritage.  Her earring
dangled as usual from her ear, and her hand reached up to check for the
pendant which was now missing, in the care of the man who held her
heart.  Letting it fall, her fingers traced the lines of the brown
satchel that hung from her shoulder.

Dark eyes fell upon the Commander who had dressed just as casually.  He
looked every inch the wandering trader, and Tyber? Who would dare to try
and hurt them with a man like him around? Peri silently admitted, he cut
an impressive figure, and she found relief settling within her breast at
the idea that he was with them.  Arlill was, perhaps, the most
conspicuous of them all, but only due to his own heritage which was
quite evident.  Even so, his clothes as casual as everyone else’s helped
sell the idea that they were certainly not trained Starfleet Officers.

Etan: No ranks from this point on. :: he said quietly, affecting the air
of somebody talking casually. :: Given names only. :: he looked at
Ensign Tyber, remembering a notation in the half-Klingon's personnel
file. :: Apart from you. Tyber will do just fine.

Tyber:  Thank you. :: the Klingons voice rumbled in the lower octaves of
hearing ::

Arlill: My first name might be ill-advised as well, being so easily
translated into a potential hazard?

Katsim: Oh…yes, si…Iljor.

So Peri she was and Peri she would be. She was not used to being called
by her name when on duty, nor was she used to calling others in such an
informal fashion.  She made a mental note to be certain that she would
not let her tongue slip, for by doing so, she could endanger their
mission.  Glancing over at Toxin, both eyebrows arched upward slightly,
uncertain as to whether she should use his last or first name, but Etan
himself continued on.

Etan: Try not to get distracted. :: his eyes fell upon a slender young
man carrying a steaming bag of something that smelled divine. As if to
underscore the point, his stomach rumbled. : As difficult as that may
be. Remember, we are 'on mission'.

Poor Etan looked positively famished, and his stomach’s protest was loud
enough just to be heard.  Tyber must have had the same temptation, for
he had already already approached a vendor and procured four skewers of
meat. Turning, he lifted the skewers high as if he had achieved a great
victory which, in a sense, he had.

Tyber: What? I got enough for all of us

Arlill: :: looking at the others :: I could eat.

Peri accepted the bit of meat and inclined her head.

Katsim: Thank you.

She hadn’t expected anything, but offered a tentative smile to the
mighty half Klingon before nibbling on his gift.

Etan: We're looking for information. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't
the place on this station supposed to be the bars?

Tyber: :: quickly swallowing and pointing the empty skewer to a seedy
looking building :: I think the bars are over there S....so if you want
to buy us all a round Etan.

Arlill: :: quietly to Tyber, in a low breath :: Smooth.

It was smooth.  All of them would have to watch themselves and make sure
to prevent slip ups.  Peri herself didn’t relish drinking, especially
while on duty, but she’d sit and nurse a glass if need be.  At least now
there was something in her stomach.

Katsim: Should we?

Her eyes traversed upward to fall upon signs that indicated what was in
which direction how to get there.  Without hesitation, Etan made a
choice and beckoned the rest of them.

Etan: Come on. :: he said, jerking his head in the correct orientation.
:: This way.

Everyone followed diligently and without protest.  Peri kept her head
down in an effort to look as inconspicuous as possible.  She wasn’t the
only Bardassian in existice, and considering the closeness of the
Celestial Temple to Bajor especially, and Cardassia in general, she
doubted she was the only one in the quadrant to be seen.  With the
increase of traffic through the Temple’s portal, people like her
wouldn’t necessarily be common, but also not unheard of.  Still, the
lifestyle she was meant to portray was an antithesis to her
personality.  For her, it was best to remain simply quiet and compliant,
a diligent underling who answered readily to her leadership.

Her nose wrinkled as certain scents wafted her way.  The pleasantries of
food, the sizzling tang of meats, sharp slice of spice accompanied with
the sweeter aroma of pastries and confections mingled with the rolling
sourness of bodies that hadn’t elected to clean themselves in who knows
how long.  Her eyes darted upward, taking note of her surroundings, the
mass of bodies that flowed like a river two and frow.  People jostled
each other without apology, a few grunts, and occasionally a shout or a
growl before moving on their way.  Meanwhile, the cacophony roared
unceasingly between the voices of humanoids and non humanoids alike.  
Should they get separated, they would be hard pressed to find each other
without using their hidden communicators, and doing so could still risk
detection.  Peri’s thoughts continued to run until she heard Tyber
casually address Etan, his voice low so only his companions immediately
surrounding him could hear.

Tyber: Etan. don't look now but we are being followed.

Peri wanted to glance back, but refrained from doing so, for that would
surely tip the tail to its detection.  She noticed Toxin take a glance
in a window, but she was in a bad position to catch a glimpse of
anything, so simply continued on and remained close to her companions. 
Under the cover of their bodies clustered fairly close together, Arlilly
pulled out a tricorder, then tapped his badge which he must have
squirrelled away in one of his pockets.

Arlill: And don't look now, but we're also being watched from above. ::
casually pointing his eyes down towards the tricorder ::

Peri only offered the briefest of glances toward the device, for she
didn’t want to draw attention to it, but it was enough for her to see
exactly what Toxin did.

Katsin: This isn’t good.

Tyber / Etan: responses.

She could hear him take a slow, deep breath and let it out in a
controlled manner, as if trying to prevent himself from doing something
impulsively.

Arlill: I might be able to disable it remotely, but they'd know we knew.

Katsim: I…I don’t think that would be a good idea.

 From her pouch, a soft chirp could be heard and Peri patted it once, as
if to reassure the occupant that everything was all right.  While she
had managed to train Echo to remain behind on the ship, a feat in of
itself, and one only possible if the creature was not actually *alone*
but with another trusted person, Peri had elected to bring her along. 
Echo had proven useful in subtle ways.  Although their connection was
empathic only, the creature was sensitive enough to understand certain
things simply by Peri using those emotions.  There was not another peep
and the dragonet settled down.

Arlill/Etan/Tyber: responses.

Katsim: It might be better to continue going as we are.  We’d draw more
suspicions by acting like we know we’re being watched.  And the
observation may simply be because we have not been seen before.

While it was impossible for even a group of people to keep an eye on the
incoming and outgoing visitors to a hub, a computer program with facial
recognition software could compile a database and run a continuous
watch.  If the hub was equipped

Arlill/Etan/Tyber: responses.

Katsim: From what I have read of the Esh-o, some of their main exports
are various metals used in shipbuilding, certain types of
cheese…um…various agricultural crops, and a line of liquors they are
particularly known for and are quite popular.

Nervousness crept up, but Peri managed to keep her voice steady. Her
eyes darted from one companion to another before she tried to settle
them ahead of her and ignore the tingle that ran up her spine with the
knowledge that someone tailed them.

Katsim: Si…so…Iljor you mentioned a bar?

She motioned ahead where a couple of different establishments offered to
quench the thirst of any weary traveller.  She had no doubt more lay
beyond, sprinkled throughout the hub.   It was not the sort of place she
wanted to go, but maybe it was the sort of place where they could get
some information.

Arlill/Etan/Tyber: responses.

--
Lt. Katsim Peri
Chief Science Officer
USS 'Oumuamua
M239008AD0

Edited by Josh Herrick
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