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Night, Cap

Posted on 18 Jun 2016 @ 5:38am by Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant Joey Geisler

Mission: Risky Business
Location: Talon's / Holodeck
Timeline: MD 1 || 1900 hours

Joey walked into Talon's and approached the bar to order a snifter of cognac, then turned to look around so she could take in the sights. This was her first time being here, and had she not overheard a few Security officers talking about it, it would likely have been a while before she stumbled upon it. She needed a drink, and not the synthehol the replicators provided, but the real thing. She wanted the spiced liquid to caress her taste-buds... to feel the burn of the alcohol down the back of her throat. These were the simple pleasures in life that were often times taken for granted by so many until you just didn't have it anymore, and as a member of Starfleet, the possibility of that was great... unless you were lucky enough to have your own stash.

"Keep them coming," Joey said, lifting the glass and bringing it to her lips. Oh, it burned, and that's exactly what she'd been looking for, complete with the wince that followed. "I'll be over there."

With her cognac in hand, she made her way over to one of the empty tables and settled down, crossing her legs. Tonight, she'd opted to dress comfortably. A pair of form fitted jeans, a black v-neck shirt and a pair of black knee high boots. Her hair was worn down, flowing in loose waves over her shoulders and down her back. She appeared relaxed at the moment, but with all the recent Consortium business going on, and her being Security, relaxing could go south in a matter of seconds.

In their first night out of Unity, Harvey had made it a point to check on the crew. While departures usually involved every hand, life aboard the ship was settling back to normal. Or at least, he expected it to. He could tell that while the crew was confident and eager for the chance to strike back at their new enemy, an aura of nervousness clouded the ship. Harvey wasn't sure if it was the fear at dying at the hands of a weapon which they had no defense for, or the fear of firing upon people who were, or could still very well be, their friends.

One of the last places on his tour was the Talons Lounge. If any spot on the Black Hawk would carry the true pulse of the ship, it would be Talons. As the Captain stepped inside, he immediately noticed how empty the place was. In fact, as he looked around the room, Harvey counted no more than ten, including the gentleman tending bar. Harvey was surprised that Selah wasn't manning the lounge on the first night, but he was certain she was tending to something important.

Without requesting it, the bartender produced a scotch for the Captain. It was both neat and a double, produced almost exactly like his first visit. The staff here certainly kept an eye on their details. He thanked the bartender and surveyed the room once more. The view out the forward windows was mesmerizing as the warp trails shot towards and past the ship. For a captain, there were few better sights. His quarters were on the side of the ship, so all he ever saw there were the trails as they shot by, never towards him. He decided he'd have to bask in this natural view of the stars, not the typical viewscreen projection he always saw on the bridge.

Harvey claimed one of the many empty tables. He easily recognized that the occupant at the table to his left was the new K9 handler he'd met that morning. "Lieutenant," he greeted, maintaining a professional courtesy as he was still wearing portions of his uniform: standard trousers, boots, red shirt and vest.

Turning her attention to Harvey after he'd settled down at the table to her right, Joey offered him a smile. She rose to her feet and moved over to his table so she could settle down across from him. "Captain, there's no need to be quite so formal. We're off duty. Surely, you can let your guard down around me a little bit. I won't bite you... unless you ask." She brought her glass to her lips and took a sip of the amber liquid inside. "Call me Joey."

Harvey sipped his scotch, savoring the smoky flavor as he considered her request. He'd been a private person for years and he certainly appreciated a level of professionalism in the crew around him. Many of his prior COs had made it a point to try to get to know him, but Harvey had been transferred so much that he didn't let them get far, assuming they made it past his brash exterior. He did recall frequent attempts by one Commodore Honeydew who never would have been ultimately successful were it not for additional efforts from Harvey's wife.

And it was because of Honeydew's efforts that he returned to Starbase 211 after the war and served under him for several years. Maybe there was something to opening up after all. Harvey set his glass on the table and replied, "Harvey," giving her permission to use his first name, a rare reward for any member of the Black Hawk. "But only when I'm out of uniform. I'll make an exception for tonight, though."

"Very well, Harvey," She said, leaning back in her chair and crossing her legs as she studied the man across from her. He was an attractive man, but seemed to be a bit on the cold side. Of course, she didn't know him all that well, but it was no secret most COs kept their distance from their crew. The fact that he'd granted her permission to call him by name off duty was a start, though, and a pretty impressive one. "I should probably apologize to you for my blatant flirting. I'm sure it's got to be a bit off putting to a man in your position, though it normally works. That being said, it was my attempt... a poor one at that... to get you to loosen up a bit. That, or the rumors circulating the ship are true, and you're seeing someone. Not that I particularly care for rumors."

"They're true," Harvey confessed. There was little point in denying it anymore, but he'd rather the crew whisper about something other than himself. "As the flirting goes, you're not the first, nor will you likely be the last. Though, there have to be better ways to get the attention of a commanding officer."

"I flirt with everyone. Most of the time it's perfectly harmless," Joey said with a smile, raising her drink to her lips. "As far as rumors go, whether they're true or not, they're simply a sign that people have far too much time on their hands or lack a life of their own. You can relax a bit around me, though. I promise not to alert the crew that you allowed yourself a moment to feel human."

"And what about those who fall in the middle of that scale?" Harvey inquired, albeit rhetorically. "I must be more worse off than I thought if you have to immediately resort to flirting in our first meeting."

"Those that fall in the middle are busy pointing at everyone else. As for your question, I wouldn't have mentioned it if you weren't. You strike me as a man that has gotten too far away from everyone and that's not good."

Harvey picked up his glass and shrugged. "Turnover is nothing new to starships." He sipped his drink. "But I haven't seen turnover like this since taking command. In the last eight months, I've seen every department head replaced at least once. It's hard to build attachments when people keep leaving."

"Maybe, that's true, but not everyone you come across is going to leave, and those that do... we can't control it. Transfers, retirement... even death. It all sucks, and those of us left behind have to find a way to deal," Joey said, taking a sip of her own drink. "Still, that doesn't mean you shouldn't make a friend or two along the way."

Harvey took another sip, letting the smoky flavor marinate for a bit before swallowing whole. "Easier said than done," he commented. "Which, I am trying to get better at that. In fact, I think I'm starting to warm up around some of the crew." At least he hoped he was.

"You're making an effort, which is more than I can say for some Commanding Officers. I'm sure it can't be easy for you, either. You do strike me as the type who would rather hide himself away in the confines of his quarters when not on duty, though."

The Captain looked back out to the warp trails speeding by. "We've spoken all but ten minutes today, and you already know me well." He looked back at her with an arched eyebrow. "Are you Betazoid, or is your golden collar a front for a counselor?"

"Neither. Let's just call it an educated guess," She said, leaning forward a bit. "You need a little fun in your life, though. Tell me some of the things you like to do when you shut yourself off from the world around you."

"I enjoy a good book," Harvey replied, sighing. "Between that and keeping up on medical papers, I don't do a whole lot." He considered mentioning he was working on his tennis swing, but for now, the tennis courts was something he did only with Jayla. They were not exclusive by any means, but there was a certain level of anxiety thinking about being in a familiar situation with someone other than her.

"Books... medical papers... it sounds like me like you need a little excitement in your life, Harvey," Joey said, finally taking another sip of her drink. So, it seemed the Captain was opening up a bit, but definitely needed a gentle push from someone who knew how to have fun.

"You're not the first to say that," he replied, hearing the voice of others in his head, primarily both Mac and Jayla. "Well, Counselor Joey, what do you suggest for a bookworm?"

"And here I am without a couch." There was a twinkle in her eye and a smile on her lips, but she seemed to be taking it all in good fun. "Well, Patient Harvey, how much time do you have?"

Harvey considered his evening schedule, though there really weren't any timeframes before him. There were a couple things he still needed to do, and a woman to see, but neither were pressing. "I've got time," he simply replied, wanting to see what Joey had up her sleeve.

"Then... we should go to the holodeck. Are you afraid to show a little skin?" Her question was a simple one, and while it could be taken a bit wrong, it was purely innocent. What she had in mind for him would be fun, but he'd definitely be showing more skin than he'd probably be comfortable with. It would be worth it, though. She finished her drink and rose to her feet, smiling down at him. "Shall we?"

"Define little," Harvey said with a hint of uncertainty. Still, he finished his drink and abandoned his table.

Joey couldn't help but grin. There was something about his uncertainty that she found kind of sweet. "You'll see, though I promise not to put you in any danger, and who knows? You might actually have fun. Maybe even smile a little." With that being said, she gestured for him to follow her with destination holodeck in mind.

Harvey followed her out of Talons, considering dragging his feet as he walked. It was his decision to follow her, so whatever followed was his own fault. And, her not definitively answering his question didn't bring him any comfort either. "That's promising," he responded to her. "The last thing this crew needs is their Captain incapacitated again."

"You're going to be perfectly fine. I gave you my word on that. I promise not to incapacitate you," Joey said with a smile. It was actually felt a bit good to be so secretive, but she knew it was likely making him a bit anxious. That definitely wasn't the way to get him to loosen up. "Can you swim?" It was the best that she was going to do as far as hints went, and now she found herself sizing him up a bit as they made their way to the holodecks.

"I can," Harvey simply replied. He was going to need to replicate a pair of trunks when he arrived to the holodeck, especially since in the few months he'd been aboard, he never made it to the ship's swimming pool. "We do have a pool on board, you know," Harvey pointed out, even though he didn't relish the idea of swimming with the crew.

"Since you can swim, you'll be fine, then," She said, smiling over at him. It didn't hurt she was able to see eye to eye with him, but her gaze didn't linger long. "As for the pool, I noticed that when I was trying to familiarize myself with the ship. While there's nothing wrong with them, I'd rather my privacy just as I'm sure you would, too. Besides... we're going for baby steps here. How am I going to possibly get you out of your comfort zone if I toss you into the proverbial deep end right away?"

Once they arrived at the holodeck, Joey found herself at the panel off to the side of the door, fingers moving over the screen quickly as she made a few minor adjustments, then she glanced over at her companion. She had to wonder if he was going to back out on her. If he was, she would attempt to not let him. They'd come too far. "That should do it," She said, then moved toward the doors so they'd open, revealing the scene to them. Just up ahead, two surf boards were stuck upright in the sand. "Welcome to paradise, Harvey."

Harvey froze just inside the doorway. The perfect blue hues of the sky and the ocean, the fine sane under his feet, and gentle breeze caressing the trees above struck him dumbfounded. During his time at the Academy, he'd escaped once to the Caribbean Islands, but he hadn't seen a sight of natural beauty since then. His gaze drifted from left to right, basking in the beautiful sight.

"You're looking at Waikiki Beach in Honolulu, Hawaii, which is where I'm from," Joey stated when she saw him taking in the sights. "It's normally crawling with people and has buildings in both directions as far as the eye can see, but I purposely left those out. I'll leave you here to enjoy the sights and sounds while I go change." That being said, she moved to a collection of rocks after grabbing something off of them. She wasn't visible from where he was currently standing, and since he seemed to be taking in the scene around him, it was unlikely he'd notice her clothes being draped over the rocks she'd just disappeared behind.

By the time Harvey returned to reality, or at least the holographic representation of it, he noticed that he'd been abandoned. A glance behind him told him the doors were still open, so he took a couple steps forward to clear the proximity sensors, allowing them to boldly advertise their closure. As the arch disappeared behind holographic projections and forcefields, he spotted Joey's clothing tossed over rocks. Instantly, he got a little more apprehensive about this situation. The last thing his reputation needed was that Captain Geisler was two-timing.

The sound of the doors closing caught Joey's attention, and she found herself looking up. For a split second, she thought that he'd decided to leave, and the only way to know that for sure was to walk out from behind the rocks to see for herself, which is exactly what she did. Now, though, instead of wearing what she'd come in with, she was dressed in a blue one piece. He was still standing there, which sent a wave of relief washing through her. Maybe he was more willing to break out of his shell than she'd originally given him credit for. "For a second, I thought you decided to leave." She grabbed something from the rocks and moved toward him.

The thought was still crossing his mind, though his eyes and thoughts were starting to wander elsewhere. As much effort Lieutenant Corwin was putting into trying to make him comfortable, Harvey kept trying to push himself forward. He knew her intentions were for the best, but it wasn't helping. Still, Harvey pressed onward, reminding himself that he was an adult and he had every right to get to know his crew, especially if they were the ones reaching out to him. "It's a pleasant sight," he remarked, gesturing a second later to the beach. "It's been a few years since I've seen one."

"Your turn to go change," Joey said, extending her hand which revealed she was holding a pair of board shorts. "Today, I'm teaching you how to surf. We're going to start with the basics, first. I promised not to throw you into the proverbial deep end."

"Thank you," Harvey replied, accepting the pair of shorts and noticing they were as red as his departmental colors. Seeing that the same place Joey changed was the only available option, Harvey immediately withdrew to the rocks to undress. After a couple of minutes, his uniform was laid over the rocks, and his boots set upright on top of the rocks as a measure to keep sand from invading them. He then emerged from behind the rocks, clothed in just the shorts, and walked over to Joey. "It's amazing," Harvey said as he approached. "The holodeck doesn't seem to fully replicate the hot sand. It's lukewarm at best."

"You're right, but it's definitely better than what we're used to," She said, giving him a once over. There were so many things she could say as far as his appearance went, but considering he was so far out of his comfort zone, she decided to keep any comments to herself. "So, how about we get horizontal now?"

Harvey immediately looked up from the sand and locked his gaze on Joey's face. "What does that have to do with surfing?" he asked. "From all of the images I've seen, surfers are standing on boards out in the water."

Joey couldn't help but giggle. She realized now how bad what she'd asked sounded. "We have to paddle out, and for that, it requires us to be horizontal. It's going to take far more than one drink and a single surf lesson for that to have any other meaning."

He nodded, turning and looking out to the horizon and the two surfboards standing in the sand. "That makes sense," he remarked. As to the rest, which he would not vocalize, he was certainly thankful. "Which is yours?"

"The pink one, of course. I figured red would be more your color." She grinned over at him, then made her way over to the two boards. She lifted the pink one and tucked it under her arm after she attached the strap to her ankle. "The waves aren't too crazy in this program, so if you feel comfortable enough to stand once we're out there, just remember to to bend at the knees slightly. It changes your center of balance and gives you a greater chance of staying upright. Paddling out is easy enough." She wadded out into the water until it was halfway up her thighs, then she settled down on it, waiting for him to join her.

"You know," Harvey said, grabbing his board and following her into the water. "I used to wear science blue once upon a time." He watched Joey as she demonstrated what to do before following suit.

"Really?" Joey asked, looking over at him. "Then you've been in Command far too long. I would have guessed you were born into it. We're going to change that, though." She began to paddle herself out toward deeper water, knowing he'd have no trouble keeping up with her.

Harvey had no trouble at all, though he often found himself looking at more than the water as he paddled not too far off behind her. He had to maintain an equal pace, and he certainly didn't want to get ahead of her as he was the student and not the teacher. "Born, no. Thrust, yes."

"Same difference when it consumes you like it seems to be doing to you," Corwin said, coming to a stop when they were far enough out for a beginner. As she said, the waves weren't huge, but it would be enough for them to be propelled forward once they got upright. She sat up, allowing her legs to dangle on either side of the board. "I'm going to make it my personal duty to see to it that you have as much fun as possible when time permits. After all, you can only push yourself so far before you end up in Medical as a patient. I probably sound like a nag."

"No, no," Harvey said, sitting up on his board as well, feeling the surface of the ocean tickle his knees. "You sound like a couple of the other women in my life." He looked over to her. "I guess you could say that's a good thing." That didn't stop him from a bit of worry of what was to come though.

"Okay, when you feel comfortable enough, try to stand, but keep yourself a little off center and more toward the back. You're going to shift the foot of your dominant side forward. That's going to help you control the board." She stood on her own board and shifted her right foot forward to demonstrate for him. "How many women do you have in your life if you don't mind me asking?"

Harvey sat still, watching Joey rise and command her board. He did not wait long, but he was brave enough to speak while standing. "Currently," he said, thinking momentarily of Mac's recent departure. Aside from starting to get to knowing her on a personal basis, the two didn't make it that far. "Just Jayla." Harvey shifted his weight as he cemented his footing on the board. He felt like he could topple either direction into the water at a moment's notice, but he did manage to find his balance. "I lost my wife in the war a few years back, though."

"I'm sorry to hear that. I can't imagine what that must have been like for you," Joey said. She stood there and let the smaller waves push her back toward shore just as they did to him. "As for Jayla, I assure you, I won't speak to anyone about that. It is a shame, though."

"It's not something I wish on anyone," he said, momentarily losing his balance. He quickly found it again and righted himself. "Alison was quite my opposite. Extroverted, always smiling. Hell, if it weren't for her, I probably would never have been the marrying type. Or at least worth talking to."

"See... that's where you're selling yourself short. I find you to be quite charming and very easy to talk to," She said, glancing over at him with a smile. And she wasn't just saying that, either. For her... it was true. "I'm actually rather glad you wandered into Talon's despite my mouth nearly getting me into trouble. You're easy to get along with, too."

He was just about to refute that statement when Harvey noticed a wave coming their way. "Looks like that lesson's coming a littler sooner than we thought," he remarked.

"Let's see what you've got, then," Joey said with a grin as she purposely jumped off of her board and into the water so she'd have a better view of him. If he managed to hang on for a full five seconds, she'd be highly impressed, but something told her he wasn't one to give up.

Harvey didn't have much time to react. What was he to do? Angle the board to ride the wave? Stand still? Jump in the water after the attractive security chief who just abandoned him? Report her to the Chief of Security? Ask for an emergency beamout?

While all of those questions and more circulated in his mind, Harvey angled the board to avoid direct contact with the wave. He thought he was riding it for a second or two before losing his balance and falling into the water. By the time he surfaced, his board had to be several feet away, and the K-9 Chief a good distance behind him. "What was that..." he asked, coughing a bit, "about the proverbial deep end?"

Joey swam over to him with her board in tow. "I wasn't too far away, and you did very well for it being your first time on a surf board. Look how long you stood on it. Most people don't even make it that long before they wipeout." She stopped a couple feet away and reached out to brush a lock of hair from his face. "I'm impressed, and with more practice, you could be a pro."

Harvey paused yet again, first because he hadn't realized the lock of hair that had fallen on his face, and second because he hadn't anticipated her brushing it away. He cleared his throat and said, "I'm thankful that this was a holodeck, and not the real thing."

"Maybe you'll be able to test your skills against the real thing at some point in the future, but for now, this is the best as far as practicing goes," She said with a smile. "I'm proud of you, you know. You came in with zero idea about what I had planned, and you went with it. You should be proud, too."

"Thank you," Harvey said. "I want to try it again, but I think I'd like to see you take a crack at it first. Maybe I can observe a technique or two."

"You never struck me as the voyeur type," Joey comment with a grin. She turned her back to him to heft herself onto her board and straddled it unable to control what parts of her body became visible to him as she did so. Taking a deep breath, she laid down and began to paddle herself out a bit where the waves would be a bit larger, then she sat back up to watch as one approached her.

When she was sure of the direction it was taking, she stretched back out along the length of her board and turned into it. The moment the wave hit her, she began to paddle along with it faster than normal before popping up into a slightly crouched position to gather her footing. The second she was sure she had it, she stood, using her arms to help navigate the weaving in and out of the wave she was riding.

If Alison were alive, he'd definitely be chastised later that evening for seeing what he allowed his eyes to stray at. Fortunately, he collected himself once again. While Joey paddled deeper into the ocean, Harvey made an effort to retrieve his board and climbed back aboard it. He kept his distance from the wave and observed how she waited for the opportune moment to stand, not standing when the wave started like he had earlier. And, as she continued to ride the wave, something in him swelled up, allowing him to smile and shout a whoop of praise. Of course, she'd been doing this for years, but for Harvey, he enjoyed seeing a friendly face be successful.

She rode the wave for what felt like an eternity, and when she began to lose speed, Joey allowed herself to fall sideways into the water. Instead of coming up right away, she swam under the water toward his last location, dragging her board behind her compliments of the tether around her ankle. Breaking the surface a few feet away from him, she grinned. "You'll be riding them in no time. It's actually really fun if you can get passed the original frustrations and wipe outs." She closed the distance between them and climbed back onto her board so she was floating next to him. Joey definitely had to admit. This was the most fun she'd ever had with a CO before.

"Try, try again," Harvey replied. It was part of an old axiom, but he couldn't remember the first. Had he been the kind to give up, he would have thrown his uniform away a long time before he was eligible for Captain. As he waited for the next wave to come, he asked her, "So how long have you been doing this?"

"Since I could walk," She replied. "I used to go out with my Dad and sit on the end of his board while he did all the hard work, but he'd stand me up."

Harvey only nodded. He didn't have many pleasant memories of his parents. They were always working or bailing his siblings out of whatever mess they'd put themselves in. "Do you miss it?" he asked, looking above the ocean now at the clear sky. Away from the beach now, he could only see water and sky, but it was still a lovely sight.

"All the time." Like him, she found herself looking toward the sky. "There's nothing quite like home, and I hold hope that I'll make it back there one day." She turned her attention to him. "Maybe someday I can take you there so you can surf the real Waikiki Beach."

Of course Harvey thought about all of the roadblocks in the way of that. The Consortium, blocked wormhole, and even the sheer distance to Earth. "Earth..." he said quietly, spotting in the distance what could be his next wave. "There's a place I haven't been in a while."

"It's been a while for me, too, but I've got a feeling it's been a lot longer for you," Joey said, turning her attention back over to him. "We're going to be positive. We're both going to go back someday." She extended a hand over it him with her pinky out.

Harvey looked down at the extended pinky. He was completely unsure of how he should react. Should he touch it? Was he supposed to do something else? Rather than try and figure it out for himself, he looked up to return Joey's gaze with a quizzical expression.

"It's a pinky promise, or pinky swear, depending on who you ask. Entwining of our two little fingers together signifies that we both promise to try to get back to Earth someday." Of course, it seemed childish, but everyone was allowed to be that way once in a while. And there wasn't a soul around to see them. Still, she held the little digit out to him. "Only if you want to, that it."

He looked back down at the pinky, now armed with the understanding of the pinky swear. It had been a very long time since he'd seen Earth, though he had little desire to ever return there. Well, there was nothing left for him on Earth. His parents had moved on, his siblings he never spoke to, and Harvey's life was among the stars.

Though, he could now admit, there was something about Earth that he never thought of before. A place for life and adventure, exploring natural beauty as opposed to living life amongst bulkheads and recycled air, working from one crisis to the next. Maybe Earth had something to offer him even after all these years. With hesitation, Harvey rose his hand, balled his fist, and extended his pinky to wrap around hers.

Joey looked to their little fingers wrapped around one another, then up to him with a smile, holding his gaze. "See? That wasn't so bad, was it?"

"It was not," Harvey replied, smiling back. He glanced to his side and saw what could be a good wave to try. "Wish me luck," he said, dropping horizontal again and beginning to paddle towards the wave.

"Good luck, but I know you can do this," Joey called out after him. She had a feeling he'd do much better this go around after watching her, and while she was a little nervous... which she'd never admit... she remained where she was, keeping herself on alert should he need her for whatever reason. The pride she felt in him for wanting to jump back on the horse after his wipe out was great, and the fact she was smiling from ear to ear spoke volumes. Maybe, this would be a hobby he'd decide to stick with.

As the wave grew, Harvey did his best to recall what he saw Joey do. He angled his board into the wave, and as soon as he was satisfied, he began to work on standing upright. Harvey smiled, pleased that he was able to stand so quickly. The difficulty now was keeping his balance as the wave propelled him. He did his best to maintain it, and just when he thought he had it, Harvey toppled over and the wave forced itself over him and his board. Still, when he bobbed back up to the surface, Harvey was still smiling. He'd managed to hold on for several more seconds this time. It was progress.

She watched him every step of the way, pride swelling in her. He stayed up and actually rode the wave no matter how long it lasted. He did it. Throwing her arms in the air, Joey let out an excited shout and allowed herself to fall into the water, then began swimming her way toward him. She popped up mere inches from him, and threw her arms around his neck with a huge smile on her face. "You did it! I'm so proud of you!" Her words, as well as her actions, proved it to be true.

He returned the hug without thinking. In those few seconds, he'd felt more alive than he had in years. "That was incredible!" he said. Part of him actually wanted to turn to someone else and shout his joy once more, but he remembered that they were alone in the holodeck. Maybe there was something to this friendship thing after all. Even in that moment, he realized he could only count on one hand the number of people he could consider a friend aboard this ship.

And only one of them was male. But Harvey didn't think it mattered. After all, Adam had children of his own to look after. He didn't need to be the only one worried about Harvey's sanity. Even Jayla had to think of the well being of the crew. And Camila and Mila... well, those were just budding as well. Surely they wouldn't mind sharing the load with another.

Joey hugged him for a second longer before she let him go and gave him a little space. She didn't want to overwhelm the man when she knew he was still riding the high of what he'd just accomplished. Truth be told, she was, too. "I had a feeling you'd appreciate something like this, which is why I brought you here. I kind of got the feeling if I told you what my intentions were you might try to back out, and I didn't want you to. You've proven you have the drive and dedication, and I think you could give me a run for my money if you continued to practice."

"Sounds like I'll have to put a few years in," Harvey quipped. "Which, I'm willing to do." He'd have to make sure he reserved some holodeck time once a week to dedicate to his new hobby. And, once in a while, just sit on the beach and enjoy the facsimile of nature's beauty. "Thank you, Joey," he said with a smile.

"You're welcome, Harvey." She returned his smile, grateful she could offer him something he'd be able to enjoy for some time to come. "If you'd like, I can give you a copy of this particular program so you can use it whenever you want to. But... I fully expect you to come back with me every now and then."

"Deal," Harvey replied. He was still smiling, doubtful he'd ever come off that adrenaline high.

"I'm going to give you a little time to enjoy this for a little longer while I head back. Thank you for being such a good sport," Joey said with a smile, leaning forward to press a kiss to his lips. She did notice a few times when he'd checked her out, but chose not to mention it, keeping that hand close to her chest until the time was right to reveal them. Without another word, she backed away a few feet and dove under the water to swim to shore.

Harvey watched her swim away for a few seconds, smiling as she shrunk in the distance. It was the wave crashing over his head that forced his attention back to the ocean. He'd thought it was the ocean demanding his attention, daring him to ride another wave if he could.

The Captain smiled. Of course he could.

 

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