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Lt. Silveira: Weights on the soul.

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@Vitor S. Silveira is perhaps better known for a bit of humour, but he can write truly heart-breaking stories as well. This was an amazingly and painfully realistic sim; technology and species might be new, but the story, the story never ceases to be relevant. Absolutely great work!

Original: Weights on the soul.



((USS Artemis, deck 3, Silveira’s quarters))

Vitor had been cleared from Sickbay. But the stabbing from the Suliban Black Widow didn’t hurt as much. After catching up with his parents, and grandparents Vitor reached out to Thera. Things weren’t going so well on that home front.

Silveira: Look it has to be a neurological thing. Jonathan had surgeries all over his body, but they never worked on his brain. You can’t blame yourself for his behavior.

Again Jonathan had proven troublesome. He had already been kicked out of school for his violent behavior. Now he had flunked again. And although he appeared to be controlling his temper, his defiant and disrespectful attitudes had taken its toll.

Vitor knew Thera well, they had shared so much, and still share the fruit of their love. Jonathan. But it was her that was raising him. Vitor was an absent parent. He hadn’t been with Jonathan in over two years, since his return to active duty.

But the guilt for that wasn’t the worst he was feeling.

He was powerless to help Thera, to be there for her, because for the first time he saw something in her eyes he never did before.


MGia: The Doctors can't agree about that, he is still growing. The Counselors have a tough time with him. He closes like a shell and they can’t reach him.

Her antenna folded down as she looked away.

MGia: He can be a wonderful kid, but then things don’t go his way, or he gets in trouble for acting without thinking, and it's like a cascade effect. Last time we fought it lasted hours. ::she shook her head looking back at Vitor.:: When he comes to his senses, sometimes he truly realizes he has done something wrong, then he feels apart, just like a baby.
He cried himself to sleep that time as I nursed him. After a while he gets into another trouble and…

Vitor leaned forward, almost reaching to the screen as if he could touch her.

Silveira: Look, I am taking the next shuttle there. I am on shore leave and you need my help.

Thera shook her head, but to Vitor her eyes glowed as if she was hopeful. Yet her words weren’t showing that.

MGia: I wasn’t asking for your help. You know I always tell you how things are with Jonathan when we talk.

Silveira: You need me there, Thera. After all, he is almost nine if we don’t take care…

Thera straightened herself and for the first time this day Vitor saw her expression change.
There was anger in her eyes and her antennae jolted up straight.

MGia: Ten. He is almost ten.

Vitor blinked and leaned back as if he was hit by a blow.
Ten? Had he forgotten his own son’s age?

All the discomfort that he felt before now turned into the tightest knot in his stomach. As if he had a large boulder stuck inside him. He swallowed, actually feeling a sharp pain in his gut.

Silveira: I…

Thera shook her head,and raised her hands as the tip of her antennae folded slightly down.

MGia: I am sorry, I didn’t mean it that way.

Vitor looked away from her. Shame, guilt, pain, all gathered inside him, making him feel sick.

Silveira: I deserved that…

Thera closed her eyes, but her silence shouted loudly.
Taking a deep breath Vitor looked back at her, forcing himself to mirror a more serene look.

Silveira: You on the other hand don’t. And I can’t help you from afar. I am going there.

They crossed their eyes as she took some time to reply.

MGia: And are you staying?

Vitor narrowed his eyes. He nodded and replied almost instantly.

Silveira: Yes. If you want me too.

MGia: I never asked you that. And never will.

Vitor leaned forward.

Silveira: Things are different now. Not just for Jonathan but also for us.

Thera had finished a long relationship. That was likely, in Vitor’s mind, the trigger to Jonathan’s latest behaviors. For years he had a family setting that would, under normal circumstances allow him to grow happy, with caring parents and mothers. At least as a normal Andorian family.

She tipped her antennae sideways.

MGia: Us? No. There is no us. And I will not let you use that as an excuse. We ended many years ago.

Silveira: We could try and work something up.

MGia: Can we? Why?

Silveira: Because I will follow you. I can leave Starfleet. After all, it's not like I still have a career.

Thera’s antennae folded slight backwards, as she gave him a “deadpan” look

MGia: Liar.

Vitor arched his eyebrows.

Silveira: I love you too.

Thera shook her head as she rolled her eyes.

MGia: Don’t fool yourself, much less try to fool me. I know what it means to you. How important it is. How it became even more important after Jonathan was born. And if you weren’t a worthy asset to Starfleet we wouldn’t be talking right now. Tell me, do you really think that after all you had done they just let you stay because of your charming grin?
Besides you never wanted a command position, so you will never be a Captain, that was never the issue, you wanted to serve, as best as you could.

She leaned forward

MGia: You still do.

Thera was on a streak today. Hitting all the weak spots.
Vitor frowned.

Silveira: You still know me all too well.

Thera finally smiled. A sad smile followed by a shrug.

MGia: I do.

Vitor leaned forward, resting his chin on his hand.

Silveira: So, what do we do now?

MGia: Now… Now I will get some sleep because it's the middle of the night here. And you get some rest and enjoy shore leave. You haven’t told me how it went, but from your eyes I think you got into another fight and you look tired. If there is any kind of emergency I will reach out.

Silveira: Wait, what about…

Thera winked at him, something he taught her how to do, even if her eyes were still clouded by sadness.

MGia: Sleep well Vitor.

Then the screen went black as she cut the comline from her side.
He stood in front of it for a few more seconds, before shaking his head and standing up.
Vitor glanced at the framed picture of him and Jonathan, taken so many years ago. Rubbing the back of his neck he turned to the washroom.

He went to the water basin, looking up at the mirror. Looking deeply at his own reflection he clenched his hands into closed fists, so hard it hurt and his knuckles cracked loudly.
Vitor closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Slowly he exhaled.

He must have done that seven or eight times before finally opening his eyes.
It didn’t solve anything, but he managed to not punch the mirror in a fit of anger. Vitor swallowed and shook his head as he opened the water tap.

Joining his hands he washed his face, letting the water drip before looking back at his own image. He could have sworn that the wrinkles he had around his eyes were coming back.
Since Clo’Q reverted his age by a few years they were gone, and he was looking as if he was in his late twenties, instead of his true age.
Right now he was feeling like he was over a hundred.

Silveira: I need a shave. And a haircut.

That brought a sad smile to his face. If Jor was still around he would certainly give him a hard time, as much as Vitor did him when he let his hair grow.
The remembrance of his friend brought him back down.

Jor, Kali, Spots, Sir, Sher… The Excalibur… The Columbia, Fai…

He shook his head. Slapping on the basin he picked up the towel and took another deep breath.

Silveira: OK, shaving first, exercise next. Hair… ::He narrowed his eyes and passed his hands through his hair.:: It's still within regulation height.

He shrugged to himself and began looking for his shaving kit.


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