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Dinner for Two... Three? Four? - Part 4

Posted on Fri Dec 1st, 2017 @ 7:37am by Lieutenant Commander Yara Blackwater & Lieutenant Rafan Kel

Mission: Deep Space 12
Location: The Prism
Timeline: Pre-MD04 2025hrs

Dolan was about finished with his meal at this point though he had paced himself as best he could to be polite to Yara who was a little over halfway done with her late arrival of a meal. "This was delicious. I'm glad it was recommended to me when I arrived on the station." Dolan said with a smile and looked to Rafan. "So why don't you tell me a bit more about your zhian'tara and what it entails?"

"Well, it is a ritual that is important for a Joined Trill to undertake so that we can meet the past hosts of the symbiont we are hosting, in my case it would be Kel." The Trill began, glancing over at Yara briefly since he had already discussed this with her and she would be hosting Hysio for safety purposes. "The consciousness of the past host would be transferred to an individual that has agreed to provide their body for the duration of the ceremony, usually lasting a few hours to a day depending on the circumstances with the entire ritual being watched over by a Guardian, one of the keepers and tenders of the symbionts on Trill."

"Those are the even weirder Trill, right?" Yara interjected with her typical grace then popped a bit of steak into her mouth.

"Yes, those are the weirder Trill, they tend to be more withdrawn than most Trill, almost monastic in how they devote their lives to the care of the symbionts and they are the least visible part of the Symbiosis Commission and even then only marginally part of it merely for the necessity of the bureaucratic process." He answered, smirking a little at Yara's comment since she'd grumbled about them being weird on their visit to Trill.

Dolan nodded and finally sat back after he finished the last few bites of his meal, sipping his newly refilled glass of wine as he looked to Rafan. "Well, you know I would be happy to help you with this, my dear. What host will you be wanting me to embody exactly?"

"Kel's second host, Jezran...she was a warp theorist and I thought that it would give you something of an insight into how my mind works, if briefly and I've tried to pair past hosts off with those who I think would complement or suit them." He explained to his former lover, sipping is whiskey as he finished explaining the situation to Dolan.

“Well I don’t know what that says about me.” Yara remarked dryly as she too finally finished up her meal and picked up her napkin to dab her lips clean again.

“Oh? Why is that?” Dolan asked, briefly glancing to Yara and then to Rafan.

Rafan looked over at Yara and sighed. "You know why I asked you to host Hysio, Yara."

He didn't want to talk about Hysio and he could feel that familiar unpleasant creeping up his spine as his thought about the most recent past host of Kel while he tried very hard not to let it ruin anything more. "You are the only person I trust to be able to handle him and not let him take over."

Yara waved a hand. "I know I know, besides, I volunteered to take Hissyfit, remember?" She said and sat back, crossing her legs as she looked at Rafan. "Who else have you asked to come help with the zhian'tara?"

"I've asked Kincaid, my sister Jessara, and Tiraa are everyone that I've asked to come help." He said and sipped his drink as he thought about his choices, but also knew there wasn't any time to change them as he set his drink down.

"Jessara?" Yara asked and immediately made a face. "I wasn't aware you had a Vulcan as a past host for her to embody." Dolan chuckled at that particular comment, remembering Rafan's sister quite well and that permanent scowl she had always seemed to wear no matter what they were doing.

"No, I do not have a Vulcan for her to host...but I thought that it might be interest for her to experience a personality so alien to her own that it might shock her out of whatever state she is in and make her relax a bit." He replied smirking a little as he saw both of their reactions to his asking Jessara to be a part of such an important ritual.

Or that she had said yes.

"Whatever." Yara grumbled.

"Well, I think it is an excellent idea. Your sister could use some new perspective in her life and this seems like it will be the perfect opportunity for her to get it." Dolan replied supportively of his lover and reached out to squeeze his hand.

Rafan smiled a little at the support, but he knew that Yara did not care for his sister in the least, though it didn't help that their initial meeting was Jessara very much being the undiluted essence of who she was when they had gone to Trill. "It might nit work, it might make her resent me more..." He trailed off and shrugged.

"I don't know if that's possible." The blonde commented with a shrug.

Dolan just smiled and looked at Rafan. "We will just have to see and hope for the best. It's encouraging that she even said yes though, don't you think?" He asked and tilted his head a bit.

"I think it is more she is trying to figure out what I am up to and figure out if this is something that she can beat me at." He replied with a slightly wane smile and shook his head.

"Well, I think I'll be off for tonight. Thanks for the food and the drink." Yara said and stood, moving off to the bar and picking up a box that was sitting there after she gave the bartender a bar of latinum. She left without another glance to the two men and instead just walked out of the Prism.

"She seems nice enough." Dolan said after he watched Yara leave, looking back to Rafan and giving him a smile.

"She is her own unique being,"Rafan replied with a warm smile as he watched the woman leaving, then turned his attention back to Dolan. "Though you are giving me that look that means you aren't convinced of something."

Dolan smirked. "I'm not entirely convinced you two are actually an item, honestly."

Rafan smirked back and finished off his drink, looking across the table at the other man and knew that was probably one of the most honest statements ever uttered. "What would have convinced you?"

"I know how affectionate you are - even just little gestures." Dolan reminded the Trill gently. "You didn't do any of that with her and you hardly looked at her or smiled... that and she didn't even look at me when I called you darling or touched your hand."

"Maybe my feelings are one sided and I haven't even tried to tell her." He replied, knowing that he needed to be honest about these feelings and that he couldn't do that with Yara since she seemed deathly allergic even to the word.

Dolan frowned at that and tilted his head. "Why haven't you told her, exactly?" That didn't seem like Rafan to not be more direct and open with his feelings.

"It's complicated, Dolan." Rafan replied as he sighed and downed the rest of this drink as he tried his best to figure out a way to explain it so he didn't sound like a crazy person and he ignored the snarky comment that he imagined Yara would have said to him, though it did make him smile a little. "There's something that happened to her, something that really hurt and scarred her...I'm not sure exactly what it is, but...I've been able to glean enough from her to know that there was someone close to her and then there wasn't and it is a subject that she's very guarded on, but I can tell that it was something that left its mark."

"Well, that would complicate things, yes." The older man replied thoughtfully and finished his wine. "Come on. Why don't we get out of here and take a walk and you can tell me more about her and what's been happening between you exactly." He paused and lifted his hands. "Just a walk, I promise."

"Huh uh...I remember what your walks lead too." Rafan replied playfully as he looked over at the other man. "Though it might just be nice to walk about and show you the station."

"We will see where the conversation takes us then." Dolan said and stood, offering his hand to Rafan and smiling. The meal had already been paid for, one benefit of credit, so it was simply whenever they decided to leave now.

Rafan shook his head as he moved to stand up, taking the proffered hand and picking up his complimentary bottle of whiskey, still quietly puzzling over who had sent it to him. It seemed the perfect reminder of the rather comical evening that had involved too many of his past lover's being in the same room with his current love interest and somehow he managed to walk away without the universe imploding or somehow saying the wrong thing to one of the to have them call vendetta and be out for his blood for the rest of his life.


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