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Who Knows?

Posted on 23 Jun 2016 @ 8:55am by Ensign Elisha Cherno & Ensign Xavier Hernandez

Mission: Risky Business

Elisha stood in front of the mirror in the room she shared with Kelly, studying her outfit. She had decided to go slightly daring in a short, translucent print dress that still kept her modesty with a built-in slip. She had at first put on white shoes, but they looked weird, so she'd swapped them for simple black ones with a low heal. She chewed her lip nervously. She hoped Xavi liked it.

It was a date night with Elisha and Xavier spent a little extra time getting ready for it; he had opicked out a pair of black shoes, shirt and pants but decided against a tie of any kind. He messed his hair up a bit, then ran his fingers through it for a casual look, then headed out to see his querida after making sure that Pequeno was settled down in his bed with a bowl of kibble and water in case he got hungry.

As he approached the quarters that she shared with Kelly, he wondered for a moment if the idea that the other members of the band was a good idea at all. She had started to stutter and backtrack badly when he had started to play with her on the holodeck and the thought of her singing in front of live people might send her into an apoplectic fit. He took a breath and pressed the chime to her room and waited for her to respond.

Elisha jumped at the sound of the chime, then shook her head at herself. She was altogether too jumpy. "Come in," she called, turning nervously to the door.

Xavier entered and smiled when he saw her; she was wearing a beautiful dress that was almost see through but the built in slip kept her modesty in check. The way she had her hair pulled back gave him a full view of her slender neck and presented a vulnerability that he found attractive as well as sexy. He let his eyes travel down to her exposed legs and smiled when he saw that she still held the tan she had gotten on Yolvanda II.

"Good evening, mi Querida," he said with a smile as he brought his eyes back up to hers as he stepped forward to take one of her hands in his and bent over it to brush his lips across her knuckles lightly while still looking up at her.

Elisha grinned and blushed slightly. "Hi," she said awkwardly. "Y-you look nice." Nice was not the word her brain thought, though. Luckily, her mouth was able to sensor her brain.

The moment she stuttered, Xavier knew that it would be a bad idea to try to persuade her to join the band before he dismissed it. He wasn't one to drop a mission and especially wanted to get Elisha out of her self-imposed awkwardness if it was the last thing he did. "Are you ready to come out and be seen as the most beautiful girl on the entire ship?" he asked her as he released her hand.

Many women who Elisha thought were prettier than her immediately popped into her head- Kelly, Doctor Kij, the Captain's Yeoman, the Security Chief, even that weird blue-eyed girl in ops- but she didn't say anything about them. Instead, she only blushed deeper. "I'm not sure about that," she said. "Especially standing next to you."

"I'm not female," he said with a laugh. "So I can't be the prettiest girl on the ship and if you're beside of me, people are going to be able to figure out which one of is. Especially with legs like yours, Elisha. Now come on; let's go out and have some fun."

"Oh, you know what I meant," she said, but slid her hand into his anyway. "So what are we doing?"

"Just going for a walk," Xavier said as he led her out of the quarters. "After all, how can I show you off if we go to a holodeck or somewhere there's not a lot of people around?" He walked with her down the corridor and came to a turbolift. He reached out to touch the panel to summon it and looked at her again. "I still can't believe how lucky I am that you're with me."

"You're not the lucky one," she said honestly. Really, who'd have thought that she'd end up with a guy as gorgeous as he was? Not to mention he was smart, kind, brave, selfless, honest, and peaceful. He was a really great guy.

"Is that so?" he asked as the turbolift arrived and he entered it with her. "Deck Five." Xavier turned to face her. "How is it that I'm not lucky? I have the prettiest girl in the quadrant on my arm and she has a magnificent singing voice and a great future ahead of her and a talent that can't be denied. She went into stellar cartography so she could be seen among the stars, but the only stars I see are the ones before my eyes when I think of her."

"How can I not be the lucky one?" she insisted. "I've got the universe's last real gentleman. Not only is he good to me, but he's kind to animals, dresses like a prince, and treats everyone around him with respect. Let's face it, there aren't many like you around."

"Maybe, maybe not," Xavier said as the turbolift came to a halt and he stepped out near the recreation room. "Whether there's more like me out there or not, there's only one like you and I'm grateful to have you by my side, mi Querida."

She beamed at him. "I think you're pretty great, too," she said. "And I'm grateful to have you."

He smiled and leaned down to give her a kiss as he came to a halt just before the entrance to recreation. "That makes me very happy to hear, Elisha," he said. "In fact, I'd love it if you'd allow me to take a holo image of you saying that just so I can hear you say it forever."

She giggled, eyes dancing. "What, you think I'm gonna run away or something?" she asked.

"I would hope not," Xavier said. "But I would want to have something like that of you so I can listen to you say it before I go to sleep and every morning when I wake up."

Or I could just say it to you in person, she thought. She didn't say it out loud though for fear he'd misunderstand her and think she wanted to move in together. Out loud, she just said, "that's sweet. I'll try to say it more often."

"So...I have a question for you," he said even as he went over ways she could say no to what was on his mind.

"Oh," she said nervously, hoping he wasn't going to ask her to move in with him or marry him or something; she just wasn't ready for that. "O-okay."

"Well, me and a few others are sort of putting a band together....and we need a singer," Xavier said. "You came to mind immediately because you're the best singer I've ever heard."

Elisha gave him a pained expression, but he looked so hopeful that she couldn't say no. However, she also couldn't say yes. "Xavi," she said, trying her best not to whine. "You know I'm not comfortable with singing in front of people."

He remember a bit of his Academy psychology classes and decided to see if they would work. "You're probably right," he said as he nodded towards recreation. "Who wants to hang out with other musicians and do what they're good at?" Without waiting for a response, he took her hand and headed into the rec center.

Elisha blinked. "Well, when you put it that way," she muttered. Louder, she added, "I- I guess I could try. I mean, like at rehearsal. I'm not agreeing to any performances just yet."

"Are you sure?" Xavier asked as if it weren't a huge matter, but a smile tugged at the corner of his lips at her semi agreement.

"Y-yes," she said. "Yes. And we'll see how it goes." She paused for a moment. "Are- are they nice? The others, I mean."

"They are," he told her. "One's a piano player and one's a drummer."

"What type of music?" she asked curiously.

"Jazz," Xavier said. "Doctor Road and Jameson Black are the other two."

"Oh, I know Jamie!" said Elisha. "He hates being called that, but I can get away with it because, in his words, 'you're too little to be angry at.' He's a big teddy bear. Which one's the drummer?"

"Jameson is," he told her. "Can you imagine a surgeon as a drummer? It would wreck their hands and they need those for precision work."

"I suppose so," she agreed. "Although I haven't seen a lot of drummer's hands, so I have no idea how wrecked they would get."

"Take two sticks and beat on something that vibrates for a few hours a day and tell me how your hands feel," Xavier said with a smile. "As long as you don't beat on me. I don't vibrate."

I thought guys liked being beat, she thought. But she kept that thought to herself. "I would never hit you," she said. "My dad used to tell my brothers and I that a gentleman should never hit a lady and that if a woman hits a man, she is no longer a lady."

"I had a female combat instructor in Academy who always told all of us guys that if we didn't come at her with everything we had, then we weren't worthy of being called men," he said. "A few guys tried to hold back their hits and she made them scream like babies who had candy taken from them."

Elisha snickered. "Sounds like my kinda girl," she said. "But, I think my dad excluded self-defense or combat training."

"Why?" Xavier asked her. "I hope you got some training in at the Academy."

"Well, yes," she said. "I was always pretty rubbish at the tests- I was afraid of hurting someone- so the instructor took to jumping me in the hallways instead." She grinned as she remembered the first test. "I nearly pounded him into the ground. Apparently, the flight or fight question was answered."

"Did you do it with finesse or brute force?"

"Do I look like I've got brute force behind me?" she asked pointedly.

"I learned never to underestimate anyone at Academy," Xavier said. "I'm Security."

"Well, yes," she said. "It's sorta your job description."

"Which is why I asked how you took him down."

"I kicked him in the balls," she answered sheepishly.

"¬°Ay, caramba!" Xavier exclaimed and would have crossed his legs if he had been sitting. "Remind me to never get you angry with me."

She giggled. "I wouldn't do it if I were just angry," she said. "You'd have to attack me."

"If that time ever comes, I'd make sure not to come at you from the front," he said.

"Well," said Elisha slowly. "He didn't, either."

"Then it's protection time for me," Xavier said. "So are you ready to meet the others for a rehearsal?"

Elisha blinked, alarmed. "R-rehearsal?" she said. "Now?"

"Well, to meet them first," he said, backtracking a little. "You know, get a feel for what they do and the sound they produce."

"Oh," she said, visibly relaxing. "Oh. That I can do."

"Come on," Xavier said as he took her hand again. "They're over there." He gestured at a table near the far wall.

She looked where he indicated and spotted Jamie sitting across from a pretty woman who she assumed must have been Dr. Road. She smiled shyly as they approached.

"Doctor Road, Jameson, this is the very talented Elisha Cherno I was telling you about," he said as he introduced her to the other two.

"Yeah, I know Cherno," said Jameson, a mountain of a man with dark skin and an easy smile. "How you doing, tiny?"

Elisha grinned nervously. "I'm all right," she answered.

"So somehow you rate a girl of this caliber," said Jameson teasingly to Xavi. "How'd that happen?"

"Be nice," laughed Dr. Road. "Have a seat, you two. It's nice to meet you, Elisha."

"N-nice to meet you, too," said Elisha, moving to take one of the two empty seats at the table.

"I'm wondering the same thing, Jameson," Xavier said with a laugh as he sat down beside of her.

"I was just saying the same thing, but reversed," said Elisha timidly. "Cuz I think I'm the lucky one."

Abbey grinned. "I'd agree," she said. "Xavi's pretty spectacular. But don't sell yourself short. You're a knock out in that dress! And you must have a matching personality or I don't think he's stick around. Right, Xavi?"

"She's definitely a keeper," Xavier agreed. "I was telling her a little about the band we're putting together, but you guys make it sound far better than I could. Why don't you give her the breakdown?"

"Oh, it's mostly Latin Jazz, but with a few pop jazz crossovers," replied Abbey. "And I've got a jazz rendition of Claire de Lune that I can throw in now and then, too. And I think there are lots of songs that we can turn into Latin Jazz."

Elisha nodded. "And you want me to s-sing?" she asked nervously.

Xavier nodded. "Just try a few rehearsals with us first, Elisha," he implored her. "We can do it on the holodeck and do some recordings. Then when the time comes for a show, we can do it there and use your holo image so you won't really be there to have stage fright. How does that sound?"

"Oh," she said, almost delightedly. "Oh! And I won't even have to be there at all! Oh, I think I can manage that!"

"Doctor Road, Jameson...what would you both say to that?" Xavier asked them.

"If that's what makes you comfortable, Tiny," said Jameson.

"Why do you call me tiny?" Elisha laughed. "I'm actually quite tall."

"You're tiny to me," answered Jameson.

"Everyone's tiny to you, James," said Abbey with a grin. "I mean, if she's tiny, what am I?"

"Microscopic," answered Jameson.

"Back to the music," Xavier said as he tried to get the conversation back to the topic. "We need to practice and figure out a list of songs that Elisha can sing to and provides the sound that we want."

"Have you ever done any Latin music, Elisha?" Abbey asked.

Elisha nodded. "Besame Mucho, of course," Elisha answered. "And Mas Que Nada. Girl from Ipanema, all the standards. M-my teacher insisted that I learn a lot of different styles."

"You guys are going to love it when you hear her sing," Xavier told them. "The first time I heard her sing, I knew I had to get to know her better and I haven't regretted a moment of it."

Elisha's only response was to blush and duck her head.

"Ain't that the cutest thing?" said Jameson, shaking his head and smiling. "Same way I felt about Mora. Well, except it was watching her totally whoop some guy's ass in a Judo tournament, but, it's the same principal."

"Singing, Judo, it's all the same," agreed Abbey.

"Yeah, what about you and your husband?" asked Jameson, laughing. "I'm sure you felt the same way about him."

"My husband's a Vulcan," Abbey pointed out. "Nobody feels that way about a Vulcan for quite a long time. Except, you know, maybe other Vulcans."

"Music," Xavier said. "Music. Think of this as a fine operation where our lead doctor." he indicated Elisha. "is going to be using the instruments, which is us, as the tools she needs to save the patient, which is the morale of this ship."

"All right, we're staying on track," said Abbey. "But relationship building is important, too. So, yes, we can put those on the list. Also, how do you feel about Kiss the Girl?"

Elisha quirked an eyebrow. "From- from that's kids' play?" she asked. "I mean, it's good, yeah."

"It's really easy to turn Latin," Abbey explained. "And a lot of people really like it."

"Good point," Xavier said as he turned to look at Elisha. "I'm sorry for pressing everything towards just the music when there's a lot more than playing and these are good people."

"No, no, that's okay," said Abbey. "That's why you're our leader. You can keep us on track."

"I'm what?" Xavier asked her.

"You're the band leader," said Abbey. "Obviously. Someone's gotta do it and it may as well be you. After all, you're the one keeping us on task."

Elisha glanced at Xavi and nodded.

"Et tue, Elisha?" Xavier asked her.

"Well, you are doing an awfully good job of keeping us on task," she said.

Xavier smiled. "In that case, you are our singer," he declared.

"I thought we'd already established that," said Jameson.

"Good," Xavier said. "Now....to figure out a set and start planning for our first show."

 

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