Author's Note: This takes place a few days after Wolf's Reunion. The original intent of this story had to be scrapped, but rather than loose everything, I adapted what I had into this little character piece.
Personal Log: While the Sentinel is docked at Earth, I have taken some time off to visit Risa with Captain Arwen, a civillian trader who is also the most intriguing Vulcan I have ever met, and someone who is dear to my heart.
Stunshock stood on the balcony of their cliffside apartment, leaning on the wall. The sea spread out below him as far as the eye could see. He took a deep breath, holding it in before slowly letting it out. Closing his eyes, he tilted his head upwards, basking in the sun. Hearing movement from behind, he smiled as footsteps came up to him, feeling a hand slip around his chest.
"I was thinking we could go for a beach picnic today."
Arwen rested her head on his shoulder as she replied.
"Sounds good. Maybe a dip in the ocean as well."
"Ah, but I didn't pack a swimsuit."
Arwen gave him a quick peck on the cheek and slipped around under his arm.
"Neither did I."
Stunshock let out a chuckle.
"Sounds good. I'm sure we can find a secluded beach."
Arwen pointed to a stretch of beach that extended out into the ocean with some cliffs forming a small pyramid.
"That would be a logical place to look. But I would like it better if we could be together."
Stunshock ran a finger over the point of her ear.
"You mean together together? You know we can't. Our physiology is too different; I don't want to hurt you."
"I understand. Though perhaps one day, someone will find a way."
He gently pressed his lips against the back of her head, keeping it there a while, letting her know how much he cared for her.
"Someday, I hope so."
She slipped away and went back inside. Stunshock stayed outside until he heard Arwen rustling about inside. He turned and walked back into the lounge. Arwen was standing by a case, arms folded across her chest.
"I never noticed before now."
Stunshock walked over to the Vulcan and looked down at his case. He raised an eyebrow in a very Vulcan-esque manner.
"Your clothes. They're all blue and yellow. There's no other colour in any of them."
"You never noticed before?"
"I knew you wore that colour, but I didn't realise every single piece is like that. Why?"
"It's a cultural thing. The two colours represent the first two Jeroans, Edrin and Shrudlya. Blue and Yellow respectively."
"Masculine Blue and Feminine Yellow. Yes, I remember you telling me about the importance of those two in your culture."
"Every Jeroan wears a mix of blue and yellow, a symbol of our own balance between our masculine and feminine sides, and a reminder that everyone is made up of different mixtures."
"Similar to Vulcan's IDIC philosophy."
"In a manner, yes."
Arwen took out some of Stunshock's food from the case and started putting it into a basket the Risians left in the visitor rooms.
The sand crunched under his feet as they walked along the beach, the picnic basket in one arm, his other around Arwen who had changed into a bikini, her hair tied into a ponytail that fell down her back. Stunshock himself was barefoot, wearing his blue robe.
"I can't believe you only have a few days left. Will the Sentinel be heading back out to deep space afterwards?"
"No. We've been assigned to Firefly Fleet, near the Badlands. It's a search and Rescue fleet under the command of Admiral Lastline. It sounds like it will be an extended mission."
"The Badlands? That's near Bajor. Maybe we will be able to spend more time together."
"I'd like that. Badlands is not too far from Bajor, and that is on your route."
"Indeed. Have you ever thought of leaving Starfleet?"
"Yes. To live with me. Either on the Evenstar, or on a planet. You used to be a farmer. We could settle down somewhere and start our own farm."
Stunshock smiled at the thought.
"Grow fields of Gryk'lin, just like the one I grew up on? Have some hasperat? Maybe a couple of animals?"
"Yes. And our children could play free there; help you in the fields to gather the harvest."
"While as a good little housewife, you cook the meals and clean the clothes."
"It would be.... tranquil."
"Mmmmm. Yes, it certainly would. Perhaps one day."
Arwen unfolded a blanket and set it down on the sand. Stunshock walked to the edge of the sea, letting the water splash up over his toes as he watched the water. It was funny she had brought such a vision up. It was something that had been on his mind a lot lately.
He turned back to see she had already unpacked the food. He walked over and sat down beside her, picking up one of his sandwiches. Like all Jeroans, he had to be careful what he ate. His species metabolism was extremely fast, and anything fatty would clog his blood vessels in a matter of minutes. Which is why he usually brought his own food on these outings. And Arwen was a vegetarian, so she would often eat the same things. She smiled and looked at the sea, slowly chewing her sandwich.
"Perhaps somewhere like this."
"No. Not here. It's too touristy. And this sand would be terrible for growing anything in."
She slowly turned and gave him a disapproving mock frown. Stunshock smiled sheepishly and took a bite of his sandwich. The sunlight was catching the Vulcan perfectly, giving her an almost angelic glow. He felt his stomach start to do cartwheels. Right here, right now, this was the time. The perfect time, for the perfect woman.
"Arwen..... I don't know if you know the full customs of my people. But ever since we met at that trade conference, my life has never been the same. I think about you a lot and...."
She was giving him her undivided attention now. His stomach leapt into his throat as he tried to find the words. This was ridiculous. He was a Starfleet captain! He'd faced down Klingons, Romulans, even the Borg! And yet, this was the most nerve wracking thing he had ever done.
"I may be a captain, and my first loyalty is to my ship and my crew, but..... you are the first thing in my heart. You are my Shrudlya to my Edrin. We could be the only two people in the galaxy, and I would still think it perfection. As long as you were there with me. When we are apart, I spend the days counting until I can hold you in my arms again. What I'm trying to say is...."
Stunshock put his sandwich down and took off his robe. He neatly folded it up and offered it to Arwen.
"Will you be my Life Mate?"
Arwen was stunned. She had never expected something like this. Certainly not today.
"Life Mate? Like marriage?"
"Yes. Marriage. Arwen, will you marry me?"
She slowly swallowed what she was eating, before breaking into a huge grin.
"Yes. Yes Cromorne, I will be your Life Mate."
Stunshock grinned the largest grin he had ever pulled. His heart finally started beating again as he stood up and unfolded his robe. Arwen raised an eyebrow, watching him as he walked around behind her.
"What are you doing?"
"In my culture, it's customary when one accepts to be a Life Mate, that she is given the Robe of her Mate. A symbol of the two joining. What is mine is yours."
Arwen let him slip the robe around her. It was soft and furry. Far too warm to be worn in this weather, but she didn't want to offend him. It was a bit long, and her arms didn't come fully through the sleeves, but she didn't mind. She let out a surprised yelp as Stunshock wrapped his arms around her and gave her a long hug, gently caressing her neck.
She let the joy of this one moment flood her. Any other Vulcan would be cold and distant. But then, Arwen had grown up alone with only a ship's computer and its stories to educate her. She had never undergone any of the traditional Vulcan training, though she had recently started studying her cultural ways. Though due to her childhood, she believed it was better to embrace emotions and temper them with logic, rather than deny them outright. Perhaps that was what attracted Stunshock to her? He too embraced his emotions, but not to the point where they controlled him. Perhaps that was what had drawn her to him? Either way, with him now assigned to Firefly Fleet, near one of her usual supply drop off points, she knew they would be able to see much more of each other.
The two fell backwards on the blanket, letting the warm sun wash over them in this perfect moment.
A Romulan Strike Team, Missing Farmers and an ancient base on a Klingon Border world. But what connects them? Find out in my First Foundary mission: 'The Jeroan Farmer Escapade'