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JP by DeVeau and Saveron: Visiting Virtual Vulcan


Sedrin Belasi
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((Holodeck 2, USS Garuda)))

::She had finally managed to untangle herself from the questions of the Counselor. While Alora understood it was his job, she just didn’t feel comfortable divulging her troubles to him. Maybe once she got to know him a little better she might feel differently, but for now, she was fine simply confiding in her friends.

One of those friends just happened to be a certain Vulcan Chief medical Officer whom she knew waited on the holodeck along with his son. The ‘evaluation’ such as it was had taken more time than she expected, so she arrived a minute or so later than planned. While it wasn’t the end of the world, Alora hated to be late, even for something as informal as friends exploring with the holodeck. Well, she was there finally and she was just going to relax and enjoy spending time with good company.::

::When the holodeck doors opened, the air from the corridor whistled past Alora and into the Holodeck, a symptom of the lower air pressure. What air was present was both baking and desiccating, the temperature being well above the comfort level of most species and the relative humidity almost non-existent.::

::As the doors hissed shut Alora was faced with a balcony over a dizzying view; they were sixty-four stories up. Other sky-scraping buildings rose around them, and beyond those the vast, red, sandy plains dotted by only the occasional hardy shrub or thin grass. After a few miles even those petered out, leaving nothing but the burning sands all the way to the mountains. Two Vulcans stood by the railing, both wearing much lighter robes than previously and obviously at home in the heat. They both had a healthy green flush to their cheeks and two green spots were visible on the back of Saveron's neck in the instant before they both turned to look in her direction. Saveron had already disabled his universal translator.::

Saveron: Dif-tor heh smusma, and welcome to Vulcan.

::Or at least an acceptable simulation. Saavok made the ta'al in the same motion as his father.::

::Alora repeated the greeting, then gingerly took a step forward. The view almost made her dizzy. Even though she was millions of miles high and away in space, for some reason, that particular situation set her on edge and made her uneasy. Perhaps it was far too obvious of a freefall drop down, and the knowledge of what would happen if she met the ground by launching from the ledge - purposefully or not.

Saveron: If the atmospheric conditions become uncomfortable I can alter them.

::That would not, of course, give the authentic Vulcan experience.::

DeVeau: What? Oh, no.

::Alora retreated a step away from the ledge. She'd get used to the height, but it would be a few moments. That didn't mean she'd necessarily dare to actually go all the way to the edge.::

DeVeau: No, you should make it just like Vulcan. Speaking of which, where are we?

Saveron: This is ShirKhar, considered the Capital of Vulcan. It is the cultural centre of the Golic peoples, located on the site of an ancient water source in the Shi'al region. To the north is the Womb of Fire and the Caves of Kohlinar, to the west is Mount Selaya.

::Which was quite famous as a centre of Vulcan mental discipline, the greatest temple to the religion that Vulcans didn't have.::

DeVeau: Womb of Fire? Is that a volcanic chain?

::Alora dared to retake the step she had given up and eyed the ledge with great caution. That step was as far as she advanced - at least, for the moment.::

Saveron: It is a rift in the planet’s crust where magma wells to the surface. The safeties are engaged. ::He commented mildly, observing Alora's trepidation. They couldn't fall from the balcony, and the view was a simulation in any case.::

DeVeau: Yeah. I know.

::Her head knew that. Logically, there was no way she could suffer injury. That didn't mean that her emotions were going to follow logic - something she knew the Vulcan probably wouldn't understand.::

Saveron: This was our apartment, before I left Vulcan. ::He said simply.::

DeVeau: Really? Wow. It's...high.

::Granted, Tokyo had its share of high buildings, but Alora didn't visit them that often, and when she did she kept away from the windows for the most part. The view consisted of far more development than Vulcan, and lights kept the city aglow at all hours of the day. It was never silent in Tokyo, there was a constant hush from various automobiles and foot traffic that, though it was lighter at certain points, never fully died down. She wondered how much this place was like that.::

DeVeau: Do you miss it?

::Alora missed Japan. And Atlanta. At the same time, she was far too fascinated with what lay beyond her own world to remain there.::

::The doctor considered the question. To most people he would simply have stated that a sentimental attachment to a location would be illogical, but somewhere along the line he'd stopped feeling the need to uphold strict Vulcan propriety around Alora. Perhaps because she did not, perhaps because he considered her a friend. Aron Kells had earned that same honesty.::

Saveron: I do not regret leaving ShirKahr. ::He said after a moment.:: I found the culture here disagreeable. Prior to ShirKahr we lived in my ancestral home in Kal-an. I considered it preferable to remain there, however the facilities for studying Xenomedicine were lacking. T'Rel also wished to further her studies at the Temple.

::He nodded towards distant Mount Selaya.::

DeVeau: T'Rel?

::The name was not one she heard him speak before. She cast a sidelong glance at the Vulcan and he met her gaze, grey eyes to green, with the completely flat expression his people wore when they suppressed all emotion.::

Saveron: Saavok’s mother. ::He said quietly.:: My previous bond-mate.

DeVeau: Oh.

::Alora wasn’t sure what to say. She hadn’t meant to bring up what must be a painful subject, even if Saveron didn’t want to admit it. Or had she? Alora had to admit she’d been wildly curious, but at the same time, she didn’t want to cause any pain to her friend.::

DeVeau: I’m sorry.

::The young woman reached out to place a gentle hand upon his arm. It was just a light touch, an attempt to sooth and comfort.::

::Saveron looked down at Alora but did not shy away, despite the fact that most Vulcans preferred to avoid casual physical contact. He found that he did not find it disagreeable. It did cause him to realise that his economy of words might have led her to an incorrect conclusion.::

Saveron: She is not dead. ::He told her quietly.:: She chose another. I elected to have our bond severed rather than face kun-ut-kal-if-fee. I considered it more logical.

::The right of challenge was a hold-over from pre-Surak days, and a tenacious one. Sometimes there were situations where logic was not enough.::

::That was worse. DeVeau knew enough about Vulcan culture to understand the significance of what had occurred. It was far more serious than divorce. Her death would have been easier to deal with, she was certain.::

DeVeau: I’m still sorry. She shouldn’t have let go of someone like you.

::He made no secret of the facts of the situation, but no one had responded quite like Alora had. It was an alien reaction, and for a moment he pondered how to acknowledge such. Briefly he laid his other hand on her arm, careful to touch fabric and not skin.::

Saveron: Thank you.

::Perhaps alien sentiments were best answered with alien words.::

::Alora smiled, but it held a hint of sorrow to it, as if somehow she had managed to share in the pain that such an event had caused. But how could she know? She had never experienced anything akin to what he had, but she knew it couldn’t have been easy and it couldn’t have been without heartache, Vulcan or no.

Her reaction to his touch on her sleeve was automatic. Like when she had taken Saavok’s hand, she didn’t really think. Her free hand rose, her fingers curled over his as skin touched skin::

::The contact made Saveron shiver. Many other species made casual physical contact and Terrans were particularly fond of it. It was why many Vulcans in Starfleet, lacking voluminous sleeves into which to tuck their hands, opted for the hands-behind-back stance when working around them. It avoided those awkward scenarios where one was inadvertently confronted with another’s thoughts.::

::As those cool fingers closed over his own he felt a sense of sorrow not his own, and curiosity, and the knowledge that one didn’t, couldn’t know. Perhaps Alora understood better than many. It had been months since he had touched any mind but his son’s, and though the contact was unexpected it was not unwelcome; for a brief moment he opened his mind to hers, answered her question.::

::Two halves of a whole, suddenly separated. Rejection by a part of one’s self. Where there had been the sense of another for the majority of his life - her mind and yes, her emotions, hidden from others - there was only emptiness. Loss. Irreconcilable grief. But before all that a wall. Iron self-control that separated emotion from thought, feeling from action. And, over time, the wound had healed, though it had left a welt of scar tissue.::

::A moment later he pulled away from her touch, tucked his hands back into his sleeves.::

::Alora stepped back and inhaled deeply. The exchange had been intense and revealing. She’d ‘seen’ him in a way she was certain no one else had, not even T’Rel. For him to have done so was odd, but she was also honoured. He had allowed her touch, accepted it, and shared an intimate part of himself.

And yet, he had also broken the contact. Alora would not initiate a second time. As it was, she had already overstepped her bounds and she made a mental note to be more careful and not let her guard down so easily. She was forgetting herself around him and she had to remember proper etiquette around Vulcans, even ones she called friend.::

DeVeau: I’m sorry.

::But that time it was her own actions she was apologising for.::

::Saveron only shook his head.::

Saveron: It is I who must apologise.

::He had reacted not from logic, but something far baser. He missed that mental contact, and wanted it. But he had to remember that for Terrans, such physical contact was casual; social niceties and no more. For Vulcans with their touch telepathy, it was intimate. He had sensed when she made that touch that it had been an idle gesture. He should not have taken advantage of it.::

DeVeau: No. You have nothing to apologise for.

::She smiled, not quite so bright, but sincere none the less.::

DeVeau: I’ll try to be better.

::That earned her another of those slightly thoughtful looks that usually indicated he was trying to puzzle out her meaning.::

Saveron: I did not object. ::He said at last.::

DeVeau: No. ::Her reply was soft.:: But I…

::She trailed off. Alora had a feeling she wasn’t going to win the argument and really, it was probably best to simply move on.::

::Saveron was of the same mind as he voiced his next question. As he turned away he was aware that Saavok was watching them with that same blank expression that his father sometimes wore when he didn’t quite understand what was going on.::

Saveron: Do you harbour a preference for certain places on Terra?

Saveron: Do you harbour a preference for certain places on Terra?

::He wouldn't do her the discourtesy of implying she was being emotional by asking whether she 'missed' a place. By the same token he had come to understand that Terrans meant no offence when they used such terms.::

DeVeau: Yeah. Atlanta and Japan. Japan more so, but...I love doing what I do - even if I haven't been doing it for long. The prospect of exploration and discovery, of learning, holds far too much appeal to keep me on Terra.

::That was a sentiment that Saveron understood well.::

::Alora turned her gaze to the child who had been almost invisible thanks to his silence. She wouldn't forget him, however.::

DeVeau: You've been rather quiet. Do you hold memories of Vulcan?

::Saavok turned to regard Alora with that same quiet, thoughtful look his father often wore.::

Saavok: Affirmative. I lived on Vulcan until I was two and a third Vulcan cycles. ::Which equated to six Terran years.:: I grew up in ShirKahr. We lived in that building.

::He pointed to another tall, ochre-coloured building not far from the one they were in. It had a very similar type of construction, apparently made up of myriad apartments.::

DeVeau: Do you prefer traveling and exploring?

Saavok: Affirmative. ::He seemed to consider his words carefully for a moment.:: I found life in ShirKahr restrictive. The galaxy is very interesting.

DeVeau: I have to agree with you there.

Saveron: His teachers labelled him disruptive. ::Yet the look he gave his son held no reproof.:: He has inherited his father’s restlessness.

::The doctor would own that fault.::

DeVeau: Hm. I’m not sure I would agree with the teachers’ assessment. Being on a starship has its advantages, though, and I imagine you learn a lot of things that you wouldn’t be able to on Vulcan.

Saavok: That is why I prefer to be stationed with my father. ::The little Vulcan agreed with a certain finality.::

Saveron: Some individuals benefit from a far broader education. ::He agreed.::

::His son was more at home in space than on Vulcan, the doctor acknowledged that. It was why, despite the dangers of the posting, he had requested that he be permitted to bring Saavok, and why he kept him with him. Others might not agree but Saveron was of the view that the benefits outweighed the risks. For a moment he rested a hand lightly on his son’s shoulder, as family might do. He also found having his son with him preferable.::

Saveron: Would you be interested to see Mount Selaya?

::It was one of the more famous locations on Vulcan.::

DeVeau: Of course!

::She wondered if she’d be able to compare it to any of the Terran mountains she’d seen. Fujiyama was, of course, the one most familiar to her, but she’d visited Mount Mckinley as well as Kilimanjaro and Everest, though she’d only viewed them from afar. ::

DeVeau: Are there other places on Vulcan that you two prefer as well?

Saavok:
Ut-kashi tower? ::He suggested.::

Saveron: If such is considered agreeable. ::He replied, before looking over at Alora.:: Would you be interested in exploring part of T’ralor? That is where I grew up, in southern Han Shir.

DeVeau: Absolutely.

::As he spoke he led them through the portal and into the apartment proper, which was neat, sparse in it’s low, Vulcan-style furnishings and restful in it’s neutrally coloured wall hangings.::

::Through the entrance was a long hallway which they followed into the heart of the building. As they walked they were joined by members of the holographic population, robed in ochre, charcoal and sand, they were shorter and stockier than Saveron. Hair was almost universally black and predominantly worn in the same porridge-bowl cut that Saavok wore, eyes were mostly dark and skin was coppery. There was the occaisional glance, nod or flash of the ta’al, but mostly they walked quietly. Saveron stuck out like a sore thumb, obviously racially different, and Saavok’s hybrid nature was more obvious when seen next to his mother’s people.::

::They entered a turbolift, formed in the same shades of copper and ochre as the rest of the building, and travelled down the length of the building. As they did so Saveron called for a control panel and inputted several commands.::

::The doors of the turbolift opened not onto the foyer of the building, but onto a flat, sandy plain with an oddly short horizon. As they stepped out perspective changed and it became obvious that they stood upon a high plateau in the mountains. Behind them the door of the lift closed and disappeared.::

::When they turned to look back they were faced with the Temple of Gol, carved into the red rock of the mountain itself. Pillars and spires of proportions that looked alien to Terran eyes; aesthetic to Vulcan ones adorned the entrance. Across the plateau was a narrow rock bridge that led to an arena and altar, balanced atop another rock spire. Above them the reddish, dust-filled sky seemed to loom closer and below there was nothing for a very long way, until the distant, rocky valley below.::

::Here and there Vulcans in long, ornamented robes walked or stood in quiet contemplation.::

Saveron: This is the Temple of Gol, atop Mount Selaya. It is the seat of Golic culture and mental discipline.

DeVeau: Oh...wow.

::It was nothing like anything she had ever seen. Her experiences with the mountains on Terra could not compare. They were beautiful, that, there was no doubt, but the alien majesty of the Vulcan mountain and the temple cradled within swept her breath away momentarily.

The view was frightening and instinctively Alora inched closer to the two Vulcans, taking comfort in their presence. Despite that fear, it was amazing to behold and she couldn’t help but stare, her eyes wide as they soaked in the brilliant surroundings.::

DeVeau: You studied here?

::As Alora moved closer to them Saveron made a mental note to take into account that she appeared to dislike heights. Her reaction to the balcony view had been less than favourable.::

Saveron: Negative; T’Rel did. She is a disciple of the Temple and a student of their most advanced teachings. She is extremely adept at mental discipline. The Temple is central to Golic culture.

::But it was also an easily recognisable landmark, and something that aliens often seemed to know about and consider worth visiting.::

DeVeau: It’s beautiful.

::And it was. Beautiful, magnificent, and terrifying all at once. Alora took a deep breath and let it ease out slowly. As long as she stayed away from the edge. Well, it was just a hologram, but even that knowledge didn’t help dissuade her discomfort.::

Saveron: The teachings of my own people vary somewhat from Golic mental traditions, though the core values and systems are largely identical. My people are strong adherents of the IDIC principle.

DeVeau: Do you have a badge?

Saveron: Affirmative. I have one that I use as a communicator.


DeVeau: How do the teachings differ?

Saveron: Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations was one of the prime teachings of Surak, along with the principle that we must control our emotions, lest they control us. My people put more emphasis on the former, Golic teachings on the latter.

DeVeau: Interesting how much difference there is.

Saveron: It is, I think, a function of differences in culture. Golic peoples traditionally dwell in these very arid areas, congregating in large numbers around water sources. As such conformity is important for social cohesion. My own people are agrarian and traditionally live in small family communities, each with it’s own traditions.

DeVeau: So not only does the philosophy differ but so does the social aspect.

::He nodded slightly.::

Saveron: Such difference is IDIC also. You yourself have given me much insight into Terran cultural differences.

DeVeau: I think it’s interesting to learn about different cultures. Vulcan culture, when studied on Terra and in the academy, is generally presented in a two dimensional fashion. There’s so much more richness though just from what I’ve learned from you. They don’t teach us this much when studying the language. I wish they would. It would certainly help Terrans keep from being so ignorant.

::The grin was rueful and a sigh accompanied it.::

DeVeau: So, where else shall we go from here?

::Preferably some place not quite so high. And narrow. And high.::

::Judging that Alora might not find the idea of crossing the narrow stone bridge to the arena agreeable, he suggested a change of scenery.::

Saveron: The An’ahyaes Valley may present an interesting contrast. Kal-an is the main settlement of the region.

::Which was where he’d spent most of his life.::

DeVeau: Sure, that sounds good.

::A few verbal commands from Saveron and the scenery around them changed from the dramatic and barren mountains to a more open vista. They were still at a viewpoint but the hillside sloped away from them more gently, down to a vast, undulating valley floor. As far as the eye could see the valley had been sculpted into geometric fields planted with crops in the various red and brown hues characteristic of Vulcan vegetation. The soil itself was sandy and pale and the plants looked parched and spiky; it was an arid landscape by Terran standards, but clearly a lush, productive land by Vulcan ones.::

::Small settlements were visible on the hills that ringed the great valley, clusters of buildings no more than a couple of storeys high, in much the same colour as the surrounding soil. Roads led down from the hillside dwellings to the valley floor below; clearly the locals knew better than to build on precious, fertile ground. There was an obvious roadway along the tops of the hillsides, connecting the farming communities, and in the distance what appeared to be a small city sprawled down the side of a particularly large hill.::

::The air was cooler up here than it had been in ShirKahr, though it was still parchingly hot for a non-native. In the fields below people and machines moved in the shimmering heat. To the east the line of hills was broken and the land instead dropped away into a series of ravines that ran, in the distance, to a faint shimmer that might have been the narrow, shallow Voroth sea.::

Saveron: This is the An’ahyaes Valley; it’s farmland feeds half a continent. There is Kal-an.

Saveron: This is the An’ahyaes Valley; it’s farmland feeds half a continent. There is Kal-an.

::He gestured to the city in the distance.::

Saveron: To the north-east, behind these hills, lies the T’ralorean Preserve, one of the last vestiges of Vulcan as it was before the gravitational shift. At the southern end of the valley lie the ruins of Ut-kashi tower, an ancient defensive holding of my people. These are my family’s dwellings.

::He gestured around them to the low, sand-coloured buildings that seemed to be dug into the hillside as much as they were built on them. Low walls marked out pocket gardens between them, filled with varieties of plants from across the planet.::

::Alora soaked in the view and studied the buildings and the land that surrounded them. It was a stark contrast to the mountain. There one had been filled with a sense of awe and almost fear. But there with the squatter buildings and agrarian culture that was obvious by the tilled and readied land, it felt less intimidating and far more welcoming.::

DeVeau: What sort of crops do they grow?

Saveron: We grow a variety of grains and legumes and rotational crops, and fruit from established plantings; you might describe them as ‘orchards’.

::Though the squat shrubs would look rather sad compared to a Terran fruit orchard.::

::Alora’s gaze fell back to the fields as they stretched out in a wave of earth. Had they just finished plowing or had seeds already been planted in that simulation?::

DeVeau: It’s amazing how many you guys are able to feed. What are your parents like? Do they work the land too?

Saveron; Affirmative. My father Vahnyahraeon is an agricultural engineer; my mother Saehleyrah is a Preserve warden. ::He said, pronouncing his parents’ correct Nel-Gathic names rather than simplifying them.:: My clan has worked this land for generations. Our ability to produce sufficient food for the population stems partly from careful management. It is also the reason that we do not eat animal products; it would take several times as much land to produce the same amount of nutrition if the land was used to raise livestock.

::That was the logic behind Vulcan veganism.::

DeVeau: So no animals are kept anywhere at all?

Saveron: The nomadic desert tribes of the Go’an are traditionally hunters, and they still conduct rare ritual hunts according to their cultural traditions and sustainable practices. But no animals are farmed.

DeVeau: Interesting. How do the plants get water in a place like this?

Saveron: In the evening as the sun sets the temperature drops and the wind direction changes. Moist air from the Voroth Sea blows over this land and the moisture condenses out as mist.

::Of course, ‘moist’ was a relative term. The rate of condensation also had a lot to do with the low water-holding capacity of the thin atmosphere.::

DeVeau: I understand that Vulcans don’t eat meat on Vulcan because it’s not worth the effort, but what about when you’re not on Vulcan and such things are plentiful? I know you don’t, but do you just prefer to avoid meat and dairy? Or is there another reason you don’t partake?

::It was a reasonable question, and one he’d been asked before.::

Saveron: It is true that in the age of replicators there is no longer the need to eat only plant material to ensure sufficient supply. ::He admitted.:: However it is part of my culture, and a part that I choose to continue to practice.

::He acknowledged that there was no logical reason not to eat a replicated hamburger, but he still wasn’t going to be chowing down on one in the near future.::

Saveron: I understand that other species appreciate differences in flavour that are encountered in animal products, however most other species have a far more sensitive sense of taste and smell than Vulcans. I anticipate that the finer nuances of flavour would be lost on me.

DeVeau: Because of the lack of taste?

Saveron: The sense of smell requires moist receptor cells in the nasal passages; these are a potential site of water loss. We have only a few receptors and they are largely sensitive to the scents of predators. Females have greater sensitivity than males.

::It was interesting that there was a distinct cross-over to species from other planets, such as Terran canines. Dogs were particularly offensive.::

DeVeau: Ah, interesting. So an acute sense of smell, but receptive within a narrow scope.

Saveron: I understand that the sense of taste developed in other species to allow individuals to determine which foods were safe to eat and which were poisonous or spoiled. Species on fertile worlds have the luxury of being selective.

::Alora nodded slowly. It was luxury all right, particularly compared with what she saw before her eyes.::

Saveron: On Vulcan we cannot afford to be so; rather we developed efficient livers which can process most native toxins, and active immune systems that can neutralise most effects of putrefaction.

::Vulcans could eat just about anything that grew on their world and regularly did. That didn’t mean that it was palatable or even safe for other species.::

DeVeau: Which means compared with humans, there’s not much that can harm you or poison you. So your livers actually allow your bodies to deal with more things and give you a hardier immune system.

Saveron: Affirmative. Our adaptations give us an immunity to native toxins and simple poisons such as cyanide and ethanol. We have no particular resistance to complex toxins from other worlds. We are still affected by caffeine. ::He added by way of example.::

DeVeau: Well, most Terrans are too. I avoid caffeine for the most part.

::She got very little, chocolate being the only food she consumed that would contain the stimulant, and even then it was negligible compared to coffee and other caffeine laced drinks.::

DeVeau: Caffeine makes me shaky.

::The Vulcan had never seen the appeal in the substance himself.::

Saveron: You would have experienced many Terran cuisines, and others through Starfleet. Have you developed preferences?

DeVeau: Oh I love food. All sorts of food. On Terra, in India and other asian countries, they have various types of curries. Spices. I love spices of all sorts, though I’m not very good when it comes to actually creating various dishes. I can follow a recipe okay, but tend to leave cooking to others.

::Like her mother and the youngest of her brothers. Who needed to cook when she had them? Of course, there was replicator food as well, which was not quite as good, but better than some people’s cooking she’d tasted.::

DeVeau: There are all sorts of vegan curry dishes. Maybe you can visit Terra sometime. Aime can cook for you.

Saveron: I would not object to that. ::He [...]ed his head slightly in query.:: I am not familiar with ‘Aime’.

DeVeau: He’s one of my brothers, an artist and gaining in notoriety. He cooks like nobody’s business.

Saveron: ::Trying to think how to ask politely.:: Would that perhaps suggest that the experience might not be beneficial?

DeVeau: I mean, he’s an
excellent cook. I don’t think I’ve ever tasted anything he ever made and didn’t like it.

Saveron: I see. ::Terran colloquialisms again.:: I would be honoured to meet your brother, and to taste his cooking.

DeVeau: Do you have any brothers and sisters?

::Alora couldn’t imagine a life without her brothers. Of course, they had plenty of spats, but she’d never trade any of her family for anything in the universe.::

Saveron: My siblings have remained on Vulcan. If you were to visit I could introduce you.

DeVeau: Really? That would be great! I’d love to meet more of your relations. How big is your family?

Saveron: I have three siblings, ten nieces and nephews and seven great nieces and nephews.

::Not to mention his own spawn and grandspawn.::

DeVeau: Wow. I’ve a few nieces and nephews, but only half that many...and no greats, but I’m young yet.

::Vulcans lived longer than humans. How old was Saveron? Although he had mentioned grandchildren before, she hadn’t truly thought about how old he was til he listed a goodly portion of his relatives. He didn’t seem particularly old to her, though having a young child probably helped with that. She refrained from asking about his age. If she really wanted to know, it was in his public file and it would be rude to ask such a question.::

DeVeau: Do you go back to Vulcan often?

Saveron: I have done so, although I do not anticipate returning as frequently now that none of my children are on Vulcan. I left Vulcan five months ago.

DeVeau: Oh, so you’ve not been back for that long. Did you two enjoy yourselves?

::The Vulcan considered his response. He knew that it was an idle question, no implied insult was intended by the suggestion that they might have experienced an emotive response. Never mind that if they had, for him at least it would have been far different.::

Saveron: It was a complex period of time; there were several situations that warranted resolution. ::He admitted.:: We did take the opportunity to visit Kal’an and my family.

::Saavok was really only coming to know his Nel-Gathic side now.::

::Alora nodded and allowed her gaze to wander.::

DeVeau: So would you mind giving me a more detailed tour? Then you can choose anywhere else you’d like to show me.

Saveron: I would have no objection. Which part of Vulcan would you consider interesting?

DeVeau: I’m interested in all of it.

::She grinned again then turned so she could follow behind her guide. If she was honest, her desire would be to visit the real world. That wasn’t possible at that time, however, and she was grateful for the holodeck. It was better than nothing.::

::As the two wandered along the path, watching people and machines working in the field below, Saveron considered Alora’s request.::

Saveron: Vulcan is not a small planet. It will take some time.

DeVeau: That’s okay. ::Alora assured him with a smile.:: I don’t mind spending more time with you.

END

A JP by

Lieutenant Commander Saveron

Chief Medical Officer

USS Mercury

and

Lt. JG. Alora DeVeau

Science Officer

USS Mercury

and

PNPC Saavok

Vulcan Child

USS Mercury

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