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Furry friends

Posted on Tue May 16th, 2023 @ 11:00pm by Lieutenant JG Kasra Constantine & Captain Aloysius Grayson

2,125 words; about a 11 minute read

Mission: The Kriresian Gambit
Location: USS Haida: Captain's Quarters
Timeline: MD 0 2030

[ USS Haida ]
[ Deck 2: Captain's Quarters ]
[ MD 0 2030 ]

Captain Aloysius Grayson was sitting on the couch with a glass of Scotch in one hand and his other was scratching his dog Raffle's head. Light jazz music played in the background with a compliment of the saxophone, trumpet, and light strumming of a guitar. He had a copy of J.R.R. Tolkien's essay Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics on his lap while he read it. Then he heard the door chime. He groaned and mumbled that it was his self-care routine to unwind after a day of captaining. He looked over at the door, "Who is it?"

Kasra waited as she door swished open, a small smile on her features. She was not alone however, an American Staffordshire Terrier trotted behind her just to her right and stopped as soon as she stepped into the Captain's quarters. She glanced down and clicked, the dog obediently sat and her gaze moved back to the reclined figure of her Captain.
"I thought Raffles may like to meet the newest member of the Constantine clan... *This* is Levi. He's a 2 year old American Staffordshire Terrier who I adopted not long before coming aboard. He was left alone after his previous owner, an officer stationed with my elder brother, was killed in the line of duty." As she spoke, Levi, upon hearing his name, wagged his tail as he sat dutifully at her side. He panted, clearly excited.

Raffles looked over and jumped off the couch. The Captain quickly grabbed hold of her collar before she jolted to greet her friends. He walked her over and the tail of the labrador wagged back and forth thudding against the back of his leg as if it were a whip lashing at him. She wasn't too sure who she wanted to greet first. She looked at the familiar Kasra and then the other dog. She began to sniff around his mouth and lightly licking his snout.

The Captain's cat, a ragdoll named Whiskers had heard the voice of her favourite person. She pranced into the room and then rose her body above her legs with tail in alert above her head. Then she dashed out of the room quickly into the Captain's bedroom, "Cute pup."

Kasra smiled and nodded down at Levi, tapping a finger on his muzzle which released him to inspect and interact with the friendly Labrador. Her eyes snapped up as she heard the tinkling of the cat's bell as it ran out of the living room. Shock covered her features as she looked back to the Captain, " Oh Whiskers is going to *hate* me now! Damn, I've been so tied up in getting Levi settled that I almost forgot about that gorgeous cat of yours!"

"Well, you're the only person that he'd make an appearance for. I think he could use some coaxing the next time you stop by without the dog with some sushi. He's still not used to having Raffles around."

This made Kasra smile and nod. "I definitely will, and I'll schedule it with you next time. We're only visiting because, as I was walking him, we passed your quarters, and I thought Raffles may want to meet a prospective friend." She paused as she looked down at the dogs who were sniffing, investigating each other but both their tails were wagging furiously.

She looked back up at the senior officer next, "I do apologize for encroaching on your personal time."

The Captain reached over and offered Levi to sniff his hand, "Hello Levi."

Raffles looked up at her dad wagging her tail and then moved down into the play stance for Levi, "Raffles wants to be everybody's friend."

Levi sniffled the offered hand and lapped at it, tail still wagging. Kasra chuckled, "As does Levi. His physique has given quite a few people reason to pause, but once they meet him, they quickly see that he's one of the friendliest of types."

"Good thing he's the Captain's friend. Aren't you boy? Whose a good boy?" The Captain had always related more with animals than humans. He looked back up and then back down to Levi, "Do your Mum and you care to join Raffles and I for a nightcap?"

Levi then barked as Aloysius spoke to him which allowed Kasra to chuckle, stepping one pace further into the quarters, "I think that's an enthusiastic yes." She answered in spoken word, which was hardly needed as the two dogs, and the Captain seemed to be enjoying the impromptu visit.

"You can leave him off the leash," Aloysius commented and made his way over to the cabinet that had a decanter of whisky and another glass, "Want a whisky or would you like me to order some replicated shit?"

"I actually rarely find that he needs to be leashed. His previous owner had him trained to be off it as he was almost the station's mascot and he stayed with their counsellor during office hours." Kasra shrugged her cardigan off and shook her head, draping it over her left forearm, "Whisky is fine, thank you. Neat." She spoke in a light tone as her eyes wandered around the quarters, taking in the Captain's personal style.

"Feel free to have a seat," the captain offered, "how many fingers would you like? One or two?"

Kasra draped her cardigan over the back of a chair and slipped into it, patting her knees as she did, both dogs trotted over to her for some affection, "Just one is fine, thank you." She commented, equally lightly as she petted the dogs, grinning and using her sharp nails to give scratches.

The captain poured her a liberal amount over a finger of scotch and brought it over and handed it down to her. He sat back down on the couch where he had sat before she had chimed him. Raffles hopped around after finding her Tribble stuffy and started to shake it about. She tossed it up into the air over to Levi.

"Looks like our evening entertainment has finally arrived," Aloysius looking over to her while taking a small sip from his scotch.

Kasra nodded silently in thanks as she took the glass, sipping on it and chuckling as she watched the dogs. "I remember seeing that years ago, is that the same one?" Levi barked as he chomped down on the Tribble as he caught it, zooming behind the couch before tossing it toward Raffles.

Raffles caught it and then started shaking her head back and forth play growling as she began to run away with it hoping that Levi would chase her.

He leaned over and whispered, "It's been replaced a few times. Don't tell her that."

Kasra nodded as she sipped at the amber fluid in her glass, she tapped the bridge of her nose before swallowing the alcohol, "Secret's safe with me." She whispered back.

"Good," the captain replied. He hated small chat. He was told in a review that he needed to get to know his crew better, "So, Lieu-Kasra, you seeing anybody?"

Kasra shook her head as she swallowed the little nip of whisky she'd taken. "Not for a while now. I was dating someone a few months ago, but my career goals where what got in the way, so I'm focussing on that more so these days. Before adopting Levi I had little to no personal life."

Aloysius swallowed a majority of his Scotch while his eyes wandered to the two dogs: Levi and Raffles were now laying side-by-side playing an odd version of tug-o-war until Raffles rolled over top of Levi, "Hoy! That's cheating, you bugger."

Raffles was proud of herself as she hopped around the living room of her quarters. She did turn around and then into her play stance egging on Levi to chase her.

The captain turned to face Kasra shaking his head in total disbelief, "I keep telling her that's cheating but I don't she'll ever learn. She's a cheeky bugger, I don't know where she gets it from."

Raffles began to bark in Levi's direction. She was growing impatient as she slowly began to move forward towards him to incite her friend into another game of chase-the-Raffles-around game that she enjoyed.

He had continued to watch on before returning to look over Kasra. He hadn't forgotten the personal question he had asked her, "Well. Levi's gonna be a magnet. Hopefully, you'll find someone on this boat."

Kasra chuckles and sipped the last of the whisky as she nodded at what he stated, "Perhaps but I'm in no rush, my new pup and my duties keep me busy and satisfied enough. I've become a bit of a home body since we saw each other last, I mean, I'm still friendly and upbeat but I don't mind my own company."

Levi barked loudly and lunged at Raffles, continuing their boisterous play through the living area of the Captain's quarters.

"That's more than fair," the captain finished his glass of scotch and rose to his feet, "I'm due for a top-up, what about you?"

Kasra set get glass down on the coffee table and shook her head, "I appreciate that sir but I usually only have one drink when it's my personal time. Now shore leave, that's a different story."

"More for me then," the captain retorted and set the glass down on the liquor cabinet and poured himself a drink, "so what did you get up to between the Uhura and now the Haida?"

"I took a little time to myself on the Starbase while I waited. Cut a lot of my hair off, got the matching tattoos with my brother that we'd been planning when he visited, and dropped off Levi. Then I just spent time getting to know Levi and I received my orders. I did happen to get a few bottles of vodka from my brother. 5 to be precise, and I got through two of them when I was on my own. My father brews vodka and a few small-batch wines at home. I'd be more than happy to have you in my quarters and sample a bottle next time."

The lieutenant's mentioning of wine brought a memory from last night when he was drinking wine with his incoming chief science officer on the surface of Chantier IV. This lead to her coming strongly with her advances on him, which of course, in turn, made him uncomfortable, "Once we leave drydock tomorrow, I won't be having another drink until we reach the port for a multiple-day stopover."

He continued to think of the Frenchwoman's failed attempts at seduction, "We'll probably drink the Vodka, I've never really been big on wine."

Kasra smiled, Levi seemed to be losing interest in play as he turned from Raffles attempt to play tug of war with him once more and trotted over to Kasra who leaned down and pet him before he lay down, panting lightly. "I'm not either, I drank it too much in my youth. I'll make sure to set aside one for you to try."

"Thank you for stopping by you two. It's getting late and I've got Holodeck time booked for Raffles and I in fifteen minutes." He looked down at the glass and then took a long shot, "If you both would like to join me, you're more than welcome. But Levi certainly knows his limits."

Raffles dropped her toy on the floor and attempted to play-bite Levi's ear. She didn't want her newfound friend to leave. Then she quickly licked the ear and moved away over to the captain and found herself sitting down on his foot.

Kasra stood and Levi joined her. She leaned down and pet him briefly, "I appreciate the offer, sir, I'm sure Levi will enjoy the 'outside time'. Knowing him he'll get a second wind." She said, smirking down at the dog as she picked up her cardigan.

"Then I bid you adieu. As you can see Raffles is full of beans," the captain gestured his hand down to his dog. She tilted her head upwards and barked repeatedly then twirled around chasing her tail, "See? Have a goodnight, Levi and Kasra. See you in the morning."

Kasra clicked infront of Levi as she stepped toward the door, "It was a pleasure and I'm glad the dogs made friends. Enjoy your holodeck time sir. Goodnight." She replied as they exited and made their way down the hall toward home.


A Joint Post By:

Captain Aloysius Grayson
Commanding Officer, USS Haida NCC-42063


Lieutenant JG Kasra Constantine
Acting Chief Operations Officer, USS Haida NCC-42063


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