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Early To Rise

Posted on 05 Aug 2017 @ 6:14pm by Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant Joey Geisler

Mission: The Finnean Crisis
Location: Captain's Quarters
Timeline: MD 6 || 0430 hours

He was naturally a light sleeper. It began aboard the Logos where he was working on Edlund's syndrome, having to constantly check on lab results. Even now as a Captain, he had to be ready from the alert from the bridge, whether it was a cosmic eddy or a Romulan warbird off the port bow. How appropriate it was, in this instance, that any of the usual or expected warnings of possible danger did not awake him.

No, the pleasure came from the sofa's stiff arm slowly etching its way into his backside. Rather than stir, Harvey's eyes simply opened. The lights in their quarters had been dimmed. Both dogs were asleep. Like Harvey, Joey had become comfortable on the couch, falling asleep directly on top of him. It was comfortable at the time, but being pinned between an expectant mother and a seemingly unmovable sofa arm was no longer appealing.

Harvey's legs, however, were somehow completely free. Any other time, he might have stayed on the couch. The level of discomfort was simply too great. His mind quickly worked on a plan, which was immediately set into motion. Very carefully, he embraced Joey, slowly tightening his grip so that he could easily move her. Using his legs, Harvey began to sit up. His grip allowed him to carefully roll Joey over until she was laying solely on the couch and he was free.

Taking care not to disturb the dogs, Harvey approached the replicator and tapped a singular stud, preprogrammed for a morning cup of coffee. It materialized, permitting Harvey to grab it and move over to the desk, anxious to see what status reports awaited him.

The second Joey was settled down, she became more aware of her surroundings, but couldn't quite place where she was in her sleep hazed mind. Her office. She was in her office. Behind her, she heard movement and froze. Someone had managed to breach her defenses, and her mind immediately began to scream danger. Whoever it was couldn't be allowed to get far... there was too much in the way of sensitive data around.

Sleeping in her office hadn't been the greatest idea she'd ever had, but sorting through days and days worth of information in a matter of hours warranted just that. Very quietly, she rolled off of the couch and came to rest with her belly against the floor. Through the dim lighting, she saw the intruder... across the room... what in the hell were they doing? And why... why didn't the alarms sound once the culprit was inside? Those were all questions she could answer later. Right now, she had a traitor to take down.

Very slowly, and much quieter than even she thought possible, Joey got to her feet. It wouldn't take long for her to close the distance between them, then whoever dared betray the Black Hawk and her crew would be dealt with. I'm coming for you, she thought as she closed the gap.

Seconds later, she was behind them, flexing her fists. "I hope whoever you're working for doesn't mind if you don't report back," Joey snapped, bringing her arms around the individuals neck in a sort of sleeper hold. She wasn't out to kill the person... after all... an interrogation had to follow, but incapacitating their foe was a must.

Harvey had little time to react before he soon found himself fighting for every breath. Immediately his hand released the freshly replicated elixir of life and reached for the death grip around his neck. Instinct shouted at him to use his elbow to counter the attack by forcing it into Joey's ribs. His soul quickly reminded him of the precious cargo that blocked the way, preventing him from fighting back.

"Joey!" he gasped instead, grabbing onto her arm with both of his hands and trying to pull it away. "Joey!"

Joey blinked. What kind of trick was this!? Caught off guard by the voice, she loosened her grip without realizing it. "No!" she snapped. "You're one of them! You're a Follower, and I can't let you go!"

"It's me!" Harvey choked as she squeezed. Then there it was! An opportunity. He was barley able to slip away, coughing and gasping as soon as he was free. "Computer!" he called out, his tone raspy and his lungs refusing to share the air with his vocal cords. "Lights!"

When the lights were raised, and she could see, Joey immediately stumbled backwards a few steps when she saw that Harvey was indeed the one standing in front of her. Out the corner of her eye, she spotted movement and saw both dogs running from the bedroom to see what the commotion was. She was... home? When did that happen?

That question was soon forgotten when she realized what she'd just done. "Harvey? I..." What could she possibly say that would make what she just did to him any better? She took a few more stumbling steps backward, trying to come to terms with what just happened. He would never forgive her for that. Hell... Joey didn't know if she could forgive herself.

Harvey coughed once more before kneeling down to pick up the spilt cup. Naturally, there was nothing inside of it. "It's all right," he said, trying to wave off her guilt. "I should have known better than to move you."

Her hands went through her hair as she tried to make sense of everything. "I've been here all night?" Joey asked. "I swore I was still back in my office. I... I thought you were an intruder... someone trying to steal sensitive data." Now she was being overly paranoid.

"You were out cold," Harvey said, his tone trying to be as reassuring as possible. He set the empty mug down on the closest raised surface he could find, which happened to be the dining table. "Almost snoring even." Shaking his head, he added, "You came home around 2300. We talked for a bit, listened to the twins, then fell asleep on the couch." He had thought about approaching her, but he felt like she'd instantly back away. The last thing he wanted to do right now was chase her.

Now it was coming back to her. "I don't snore," she protested softly as a hint of a smile formed on her lips. "I thought all of that was just a dream. We're really having twins?"

He nodded, not sure if there were words in Federation Standard that were appropriate enough to verbally confirm. "And yes, you do snore." Even after all of this time, he wasn't sure if she actually did. Harvey continued with the act only to distract her from her regretful actions.

"I do not!" Joey protested as she advanced on him. His attempts to distract her from what she did were working, but now he was in a different kind of trouble, and not necessarily anything bad based on the smile she wore. There wasn't much time before she had to get back to her office, but there was more than enough time to see to it that their days started off in the right direction. "Prepare to be boarded by the Captain of the USS Tickle Time. Resistance is futile."

"Tickle Time?" Harvey repeated with a mumble. His ploy had worked, but he hadn't meant to draw out the playful future mother. Thankfully, reinforcements came to his aid! Two dogs with their tails wagging, tongues out, panting and jumping between him and Joey.

Joey eyed the two dogs. "Protecting Not-the-Mama, huh?" she asked, crouching down to rub both of the happy canines behind an ear. "Good. It's our jobs to make sure he stays safe." She turned her attention up to Harvey with a smile. What she'd just done still played in her mind, but she felt a bit better about it. Now, though, she was standing upright once more and closing the distance between them. "Can I see your neck?"

He rubbed it a bit before allowing her to see it by bowing his head. Were it not for her being the same height as he, he would have tried to lean against something and lean more downward.

She gently took his chin to angle his head a bit so she could see if there was any damage. So far, there didn't seem to be any, but that could change as time moved forward. "I'll make it up to you," she said softly, releasing him as she lowered her arms back to her sides. The guilt was back, but Joey tried not to let it show. In fact, she thought after what happened, giving him a little space would be a good thing. "I should probably go take a shower. I'll be heading down to the surface with the others soon, and I still need to see if the download offered up anything worthwhile."

The clock was indeed ticking. Harvey had no intention of being invisible while the away team was on the planet. In fact, he planned on being on the bridge by the time the shuttle was requesting departure clearance. As for her apology, Harvey did not feel that she needed to apologize or otherwise compensate. They were, after all, just a couple of months into this relationship. With kids on the way and a wedding to plan, there was still much they didn't know about each other. This surprise attack was a clear indication of it. "I'm going to try a new cup of coffee, since the floor drank all of mine," he quipped with a smile.

Joey frowned and began to pace the floor, running her hands through her hair again. "It's this place," she said softly. It put her on edge... brought out things inside of her that she thought she'd managed to bury forever, but it seemed as though they were beginning to resurface. Keeping it all bottled up wasn't good for her, or the two little ones she had to protect thanks to the stress it brought with it. "When I was here as a CPO, shortly before we were forced to vacate the area, I was assigned to protect one of the Finnean dignitaries, and I was pretty good at my job. Multiple attempts were made to his life, but were all thwarted."

She paused for a second, still pacing as her brows furrowed. "Whoever was behind it all didn't appreciate the fact that I was preventing them from completing their task, so they sent someone after me," Joey continued. "I woke up and found him standing across the room from me, and when I tried to get up, I got tangled up in my covers. Before I knew what was going on, he was on me, and I was fighting for my life. Rico saved my life that night. I don't even really remember him coming into the bedroom."

Harvey nodded slowly as she spoke. He knew better than anyone how much the past could haunt someone. Being on Betazed, and on Starbase 211, he experienced many such flashback. Harvey even experienced some when he first took command of the Black Hawk. "Then it's a good thing we've kept the ship locked down to anyone not Starfleet. You are safe here," he said, crossing the room in order to embrace her in an attempt to comfort her.

Joey wrapped her arms around him and laid her head against his shoulder. "Am I?" she questioned softly. "Are any of us? We've already established that at least two members of Starfleet were Followers... who's to say there aren't more? Who's to say one of them won't make it onto the ship as a member of the crew?" She swallowed a lump in her throat. There were so many uncertainties that came along with life in space, but she never allowed that to stop her from doing her duty. Just like she wouldn't let it now. "What if that's why you had to send the probe in the first place?"

She pulled in a shaky breath. "It makes wanting to trust anyone very difficult, but I do trust you."

He wanted to immediately reciprocate, echo her sentiment. The truth was, even though he loved her, he still did not fully trust her. Rather, he did not know if he could trust her with the warning from the future, assuming it was real in the first place. Harvey wanted nothing more than to put that warning so far away from his mind so that it wouldn't bob back to the surface every minute of every day. He assumed at this point, his fears would not be assuaged until they entered the Convergence Zone and discovered the reason for the probe in the first place. Hopefully, they'd be bringing their children in after this supposed danger was completely gone. At least, he could only hope.

Still, he gently squeezed her, offering what comfort he could. "We just won't know until we get in there," he told her. "And this ship is far more equipped to deal with any threats than the old girl. We're going to be fine." If only he believed what he said...

Joey nodded her head and pulled back. His lack of saying he trusted her spoke volumes, and while that hurt like hell, she was sure she wasn't the only one in that boat. Still, though... how many of the other crew were having his children or planning to marry him? She mentally shook those thoughts from her mind and moved to grab her discarded uniform jacket from the chair. "Yeah... we're going to be fine," she echoed, but was she talking about the ship and the crew... or them.

With her jacket in hand, Joey made her way into the bedroom, but didn't so much as pause as she threw her jacket on the bed and continued toward the bathroom. Now, Lieutenant Corwin couldn't wait to get on the surface, leaving Joey behind wouldn't be difficult.

Harvey watched her walk away. It was impossible to miss her tone, and Harvey knew for certain his hesitation and word choice just put him in the figurative dog house. He'd have to patch this together later.

Hearing a whine, he looked down at his feet. Rico and Pequeno sat perfectly, tails still and brandishing their sad puppy dog eyes. "We're fine," he tried to reassure them. "Mama will be fine." I hope. He gestured for the dogs to follow him to the replicator, where he quickly produced a couple bowls of food. He set them on the ground, but neither dog touched it. In fact, their whine continued as they trotted away, laying down outside the bathroom to wait for the Mama.

Harvey sighed. "Yeah," he muttered. "I know." He screwed up, and he'd have to find a way later to make it up later.

After a quick shower, Joey went through the motions of getting ready to start her day. As she walked out of the bathroom, she nearly tripped over the dogs, but managed to catch herself by grabbing the entryway. She crouched down once she'd steadied herself and gave them both a good scratch. "You two hold down the fort and be the good boys I know you are," she said as she rose to her feet once more.

Joey waited as the dogs moved, then made her way over to the bed and reached for her jacket to pull her combadge from it, then got it attached to the clean one she was wearing. Now, she was ready to start her day. Giving the boys another good rub down, she moved back into the main living area. "I'm sure Commander Teixeira will check in with you when we get back and brief you on everything. I'll see you later," she said. With that, she straightened her uniform, put Joey in check and walked out of the door as Lieutenant Corwin.

Harvey, who'd relocated to the desk, watched her leave. Both of the dogs slowly walked to the closed door, only to sit and whine once more. "Yeah," he muttered again. Early mornings like this only meant one thing.

It was going to be a long day.

 

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