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SD241901.08 || Joint Shore Leave/Pre-Arrival Log || "Tony & Mira Take on Sal'kiir" [12/12]

Posted on Wed Jan 9th, 2019 @ 4:28am by Lieutenant Commander Anthony Manelli & Lieutenant Commander Mirabella Basso

Mission: Once More Unto The Horizon
Location: The Planet Sal'kiir, Omega Fleet Territory

=/\= The Continuation...

When Tony woke up, the Sal'kiiran sun was shining through the floor-to-ceiling windows as it had on their last visit. The sun still shone just as brightly but somehow it seemed a bit more bearable. Perhaps he was getting used to it - or perhaps it was just that his mind was on other things - mainly his newly-gained wife who now lay cuddled against him. He had thought that nothing could surpass their first time together on the Artemis - but he had been wrong. Their wedding night had been nothing short of fantastic. They had made love to each other before finally sleeping the sleep of the completely satisfied.

He lay there for a moment, looking at her, taking in the beauty of her naked form. She lay partly on her side, facing him, their bodies pressed tightly against one another and he could hardly believe that this had happened. They had been attracted to each other almost from the very beginning but he had never envisioned things progressing this rapidly. They had known each other less than a month, but somehow this had felt SO right.

He hated to awaken her but he knew this would be their last day on Sal'kiir before returning to Kincardine Station and, by extension, to the Artemis, so he knew they had to get up and start their day.

He leaned over and kissed her cheek lightly before whispering "Good morning Tesoro..."

Mirabella groaned with her usual morning reluctance to wake up, but then she heard his voice and stretched a little. The evening and night came back to her, and she smiled with a touch of the-cat-who-ate-the-canary look to her face as she looked up, languid as she gazed through half-lidded eyes. "I'm going to have to learn another language just so I have better pet names for you," she drawled with humor.

"Honey I'll be glad to teach you anything you want to know," he answered. "After all you've taught me a few things in the past - including last night." He could still remember her touch as they explored each other almost as if it had been the first time and he smiled with the realization that it would be this way for the rest of their lives. "I never thought I would say this, but for the first time that I can remember, I'm not looking forward to going back into space. And I had the oddest dream - after you let me sleep, that is..." he said with a grin.. ."I dreamed that, after Starfleet was through with us, that we came back here to live."

"Did you?" she asked, moving her arms so she could fold her hands on his shoulder and rest her chin on them. "On Sal'kiir?"

"Yeah. We lived in a cabin near the river, not far from the cabin where we stayed the other night," he said. "But we had settled here and were enjoying it." The more he thought about it, the more he liked the idea. But the question would be - would she like it? Or would the both of them be happy if they were away from flying? "What would you think, love? Would you be happy here?"

She smiled softly. "I'm not sure I'm ready to retire here right now," she replied, "but I can see coming back here down the road. I've enjoyed it, and it will now always have amazing memories for us."

"Oh I didn't mean right now..." he said with a laugh. "I meant later of course. If we were to leave right now, Starfleet would declare us AWOL and while I love spending time with you, the thought of doing time with you in a Federation penal colony just doesn't appeal to me somehow." He ran his hands down her back as she lay atop him, then cupped her ass in his hands and held her tightly. "So what would you like to do for our last day in paradise La Mia Bellezza?

"Hmm," she said thoughtfully, eyes wandering as she tried to prod her brain into functioning again. "Well, we have yet to see the Air region and had said we wanted to do that. Perhaps visit the Air city?"

"That sounds like an excellent idea" he replied as he continued to slowly stroke her soft skin. Bringing one hand up, he gently ruffled her hair. "I feel sorry for anyone who isn't me right now," he said. "And I can't believe how lucky I am to have found you..."

"I can believe how lucky you are too," she said with an impish grin. She poked him in the side and then flounced out of the bed before he could retaliate.

"Oh no you don't..." Tony called out, tossing the covers aside. They were both naked but it didn't matter. Their suite was high enough above the ground that no one could see in, and even if they could he wasn't sure that he or Mira would have cared anyway. Besides, it appeared that she had been headed for the shower and clothes would have been removed anyway.

"Thought you could run away, didn't you?" he said as he caught her from behind. "You're not gonna escape without a kiss at the very least."

Laughing, she spun in his arms and gave him a kiss. "There. Fee paid." She smirked. "Now to shower, if we're going to be at all presentable to leave the room."

After their shower, they had dressed and, since they knew they would be headed back to Kincardine Station, they gathered all their things, including all the souvenirs they had gathered during their time here. Their plan was to visit the last area they had planned to see - the Air Region. When they checked out, the woman at the desk had told them that the easiest way to get to the region was to take the aerial tram which was located on the north side of the city, just about 2 kilometers' walk from the hotel.

As they walked, they saw many of the places they had seen when they had gone to the club a few nights before, only now they were seeing them in daylight. Along the way, they saw many shops, now open, that had been closed before, but they didn't have time to stop if they were to have time to explore the air region. They also passed many Sal'kiir on the street as well and in most cases were greeted with a word or two or at least a friendly nod.

They had paused on the bridge that spanned the river that had been the location of the riverwalk before continuing on in search of the tram station. When they found it, they discovered that it was more like what humans knew as a ski lift up the side of the mountain than a tram. It operated on a cable system that seemed to stretch for kilometers up into the mountain range that ran north of the city. It was difficult to judge how high the mountains were but Tony had the feeling that they were in for an impressive ride.

They got aboard the enclosed lift and found a seat, then settled back to enjoy the ride. As they waited for the lift to start, Tony put his arm around Mira's shoulder, then asked "Have I told you lately just how much I love you...?"

Mira laughed lightly, still feeling marvel at the sights beneath them as they rose higher and higher. She wasn't used to this altitude without being in a fighter jet, she mused with humor, as she turned to Tony. "Not since this morning, I think," she replied teasingly.

"In that case, allow me to correct that..." he said. "I love you more than anything in this entire universe." He kissed her gently then settled back to enjoy the ride up to the air city that was their destination. He was a bit surprised at how smooth the ride was. Being that it was a cable system he had expected it to be a bit rough but they continued to climb higher and higher with hardly a bump.

When they reached the top, they exited into a city so wildly different than the Water region that it might as well have been another planet. In fact, it was almost more advanced than the capital city with the hotel they had stayed in. Mira stood and stared for a moment...as well as got used to the sudden fact that the air felt different. She realized they were even higher up than she expected.

Everything seemed to be straight lines and shades of white or light blue. Tall, thin Air Sal'kiirans came and went, and she noticed the tattoos that seemed to be on all of their hands and some of their faces. They nodded politely, although weren't as gregarious as the Water folks. There was a scattering of other SF personnel taking in the sights as they walked down the pale, clean paved street.

Breathing in the rarefied air, Tony looked around as he and MIra strolled down the street. He still found it difficult to believe that so many different cultures seemed to be in this one area. So much diversity - the modern-ness of the cities, the friendliness of the lake people, the almost medieval feel of the village they had visited yesterday The cuisine of the Earth Region - including the rodent-kebab. Who could forget that?. And now, this city situated high in the mountains. "Quite different than the other regions we've seen, isn't it?" he asked her.

"Quite," Mira couldn't help but agree. "It's really... Well, it's quite amazing. Isn't it." She laughed and shook her head. "It's going to seem almost boring to get back to work."

"Is anything ever boring in Starfleet?" Tony asked. "A bit asinine - occasionally, challenging - definitely, surprising - sometimes. But rarely boring. After all, we never know what's around the next corner or beyond the next star."

They continued to walk and explore this city that was practically in the clouds, occasionally stopping here and there to look at this or that until all too soon it was time to report for transportation back to Kincardine Station. "Sweetheart I hate to be the bearer of bad news but our vacation time is just about over. We only have about an hour to report for transportation."

It was all over far too soon.

Seemingly in the blink of an eye, they were leaving the city in the clouds to return to land, and then heading back up to the Starfleet space station orbiting the planet. It seemed like another universe, almost, to go from all of that on Sal'kiir to all of this on Kincardine. Part of her was sad to leave it behind, but another part was ready to begin the rest of their lives.

As they departed the transport and went through the disembarkation point, the security officer on duty checked their names in the computer.

"Anthony Manelli and Mirabella Basso?" he repeated. They each nodded. "I'm to inform you that you will not be returning to the Artemis."

Mira frowned and looked at Tony, then back to the security officer. She wondered if there was about to be trouble. "Why not?"

He smiled politely, seemingly trying to calm her down before she got riled. (Good call.) "You've been transferred. You're due to report to a transport to Starbase Horizon."

 

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