<VPA Alpha Stream> Dinner Fit For a Warrior

  • From: Anna <tkilyle@xxxxxxx>
  • To: alphastream@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 03 Oct 2010 10:24:05 -0400


_Dinner Fit For a Warrior
_by Kadir, son of Kreth; and the ladies of the House of Topian

Kadir was coming for dinner and Empet was thoroughly amused by her eldest daughter's reaction. The girl had yet to stop fussing. She had made her best recipe for gagh and the blood wine she'd brought in was the very best vintage that the Ambassador ever carried with her. Kala had the table laid for the four of them, Kadir and her sister's Romulan, if he chose to join them.

"SoS," Selneth said softly as she watched Kala buzz around, "do you think the HoD would be interested in me, rather than Kala always having whatever she wanted."

Empet blinked as she peered at her middle girl. "I believe Kala has her heart set on this man, child. Do you have yours also?"

Selneth shrugged but her calculating mind was ticking. "He is handsome and honourable. A better catch than settling for a non-Klingon like Tia."

A warrior did not need his mother fussing over him like a small boy going off on his first hunt but Kadir put up with his mother's ministrations. After all, he did miss her and there was also no one else he knew that could make leathers gleam quite so magnificently. She'd been able to leave her small charges to come to his rooms on the station and see to it that he looked presentable.

Gressa bit back only a small sigh. "You will grow into these, Kadir," she told him, recalling using the same words years before.

Kala smiled when she was satisfied with the table layout and brushed her hands down her skirt. "I am going to change before he comes. I don't want him disappointed."

Empet snorted as she set her hands on her eldest's cheeks. "How could any man be disappointed in any of my girls?"

All Selneth could think was that she'd make sure the HoD was not disappointed when he chose her above her sister. "Perhaps I should change also." Without another word, she swept away to pick out her fiercest clothing.

Finally, Kadir felt himself presentable as a warrior. Apparently, his mother agreed with his internal assessment as Gressa gave an approving grunt then clapped him on his arm. "Go, Kadir. You've set your eye on a fine woman so I hope you've brushed up on your poetry."

"Yes, SoS," he said with a chuckle. "Go and hope that this proves to be something more than an evening of dining with a beautiful lady."

Kala returned to her mother's side much quicker than her sister. She was dressed in oriental red silk that Empet had had made up into a gown especially for her. Her long dark hair was up in an intricate knot of plaits and tails so that it was out of her eyes but still striking. She wore the House emblem on a chain around her neck and her grandmother's Imperial signet ring.

"My beautiful daughter," Empet said in quiet wonder as she held Kala's cheeks in her hands. "You are a stunning woman. He will see it and appreciate it."

"SoS?" she asked as she leaned her forehead against her mother's. "I want this man... I have thought of nothing but his eyes and his smile since I saw him. What if..."

"Hush," Empet said sharply, lifting her daughter's face to look into her eyes. "You know I love you both but your sister is only giving chase because she knows you have your heart set on HoD Kadir. He will see it just as clearly as I do and when he does, he will make the right decision."

Kadir supposed he ought to have been singing on his way there, announcing to all who heard that he was coming. And, at one time he might have done just that. Now he just didn't feel the need to be competitive simply for his own advantage. To himself, he was secure in his status as a warrior and others would know that.

Selneth was the one waiting by the door and the moment Kala saw what her sister was wearing, she almost ran to change but her mother's hands held her fast. The middle girl was in full regalia of the House of Topian, impressive no matter who was observing.

Kadir strode forward as any warrior ought to, stopping only because there were guards there. "You will tell those within that Kadir, son of Kreth and Gressa, is here," he said firmly.

Emat eyed the warrior carefully then nodded to his first officer. "Stay here a moment, sir," he said in his deep baritone as Goneril marched inside. She smiled at Kala, ignoring Selneth because the woman irritated her.

"I declare the arrival of Kadir, son of Kreth and Gressa, my ladies," she said in firm, resonating tones before stepping to the side and allowing the door to open.

"Welcome to our home here on Deep Space 9," Empet said evenly.

"I'm honored at the invitation, Ambassador," Kadir said with a bow. Even as he straightened, his eyes sought out the sister he favored. "Greetings from my mother."

Kala glided forward, the silk of her dress rustling softly. "Send ours in return, HoD Kadir. Perhaps next time she can come with you."

"Or you can invite one of us to join you," Selneth interjected.

"When her duties allow, I may just invite her with me next time," Kadir told them. "I have yet to meet the man who has been both her employer and, it seems, her surrogate family."

Kala's smile was warm as she offered out her hand for him to take to lead him through to the dining area. "Come, we have prepared a meal fit for a warrior.."

Seeing that Selneth was about to interject again, Empet took the younger woman's arm and started to steer her away. "Come with me, little one. We will see if Tia intends joining us and leave the HoD to settle into our home." She shot Kala a smirk, clearly indicating that she approved of this man, then propelled the middle daughter away.

Stepping up closer to Kadir, Kala flashed her teeth for just a second. "Let me show you our home," she said in a soft purr.

"Please," Kadir said simply. "It is not for a warrior to play tourist and gawk at sights but I find that my eyes are thirsty still for anything that has actual solid walls and floors." He paused to appreciate her for a moment, a fang not quite showing. "And beauty."

Now she knew her cheeks were definitely flushed but she maintained eye contact with him. She was no shrinking violet to be cowed by praise. Kala knew she was beautiful but his words were the first to actually turn her head. "These are simply temporary. Back on Qo'noS our House is vast, with each of us having our own apartments, but here we share one small set of chambers." She reached out and offered her hand again to him.

Kadir allowed himself to be led, if only because he could. He had no fear--respect, yes but not fear. "As I said, if you lived in a compound of what barely passed for walls and no respectable heat, anything is an improvement. That what is within is honorable and pleasant is even better."

"Of course, you add to that, HoD," she chuckled, leading him into a warm, starkly decorated sitting room. Her mother's throne-like chair stood at one end while other, softer and more comfortable seats were scattered around. "You bring honour and pleasant company into our House when you visit."

Kadir let out a sharp but not harsh laugh. "You would be the first to describe my company as pleasant," he said with a fangless smile. "My men, the ones from the camp, would say honorable I would think. So might the others from the camp. That Human Marine respected me, might have even been a decent enough man for a Human, but...pleasant? Ha!"

She tutted slightly and folded her arms under her breasts. Her eyes moved down his form then up again to rest on his striking eyes. She let a smirk of appreciation turn up the corner of her mouth. "Oh yes, very pleasant."

"Is that so?" he asked mildly, his eyes following hers. "Then I had better hope all the years I spent writing poetry in my head were worth it. A shortage of foes gives a man time to hone skills he might not otherwise have time to see to."

"Just so long as you don't expect me to throw furniture at you," Kala snorted. "SoS considers it obnoxious and I tend to agree. It is undignified." It was her subtle way of warning him she may be Klingon but she was far from average.

"I don't expect anything," Kadir said soberly. "except what happens. Besides, in this state, if anyone threw anything at me, I might break something," It was his first admission of weakness to someone who was not a doctor.

"You are stronger than you look," she said with total faith, her hand moving to rest against his chest.

Kadir growled appreciatively and was rather glad he'd foregone the stiff leather gloves his mother had wanted him to wear. He wouldn't have been able to feel her skin quite so easily. "No but, to quote that damned crazy doctor, neither am I as strong as I want to be. Head butting that Marine gave me a head ache," he grumbled, the last word hanging off his tongue like it tasted bad.

"No head butting," she promised. Her free hand reached to tap her own, slight ridges and Trill spots. "I believe you'd give me more of a headache than I would give you." His scent was filling her nose and she could tell, even without seeing the appreciation in his eyes, that he was attracted to her.

"SoS, please!" Selneth practically begged.  "Why can't I go back in?"

Empet smiled fondly at her middle child. "Just give them a few more minutes..." Her match-maker's mind was ticking over all of the possibilities. She really did approve of this HoD Kadir.

Kadir laughed out loud at Kala's remarks, releasing her so that he could hold his stomach muscles. His eyes sparkled when he stopped. "I've heard it said that one ought to laugh as much as one breathes. That has to be the first laugh in many years I have shared with someone who smells good." He touched one ungloved hand to her chin. "And you do smell good."

"Mmm... thank you," she purred, taking a step even closer to him. Her hands reached up to touched his cheeks and she offered him a sweet smile. "You have a rich laugh. I'd like to hear more of it."

"You might be surprised what makes me laugh," Kadir said mildly, his smile warm and not the least bit predatory.

"Yes? What makes you laugh, HoD Kadir?" Oh how she wanted this man. It was beyond an animalistic attraction that her mother had described. It was more like her father's deep rooted ideals of connection to a mate.

Empet let a slow smile spread over her lips as she consulted her chronometer. "Now you may go in," she declared and let out a deep laugh when Selneth exploded from the room.

The first thing Selneth saw was Kala leaning in close to Kadir and she had to fight to hold back a huff. It wasn't fair! She always got what she wanted.

Kadir refused to be startled at the sudden noise, even if he felt that way. Pah! That was not for him. He offered the younger sister a fangless smile and a slight bow. "Selneth," he said mildly. "Good to see you."

"And you, HoD," Selneth purred, managing to compose herself from her surprise and irritation. "Has my sister fed you yet or has she left you hungering?"

Kala stood back from him and gave her sister a warm smile. "We were about to go in but we awaited you and our SoS."

"She was," and here had had to wrack his brain for the appropriate Federation term, "playing tour guide as your own SoS asked. She is a dutiful daughter."

Selneth smirked at that. It wasn't exactly a ringing declaration of love or even attraction. "Very dutiful. The great heir of the House of Topian."

"Kai the House then," Kadir declared. "It is well served by the one who leads and who will lead. Certainly larger than my own."

"But not older," Empet said as she strode in. "We celebrate our fortieth year next year. House Gorkon would have been five hundred then."

"SoS," Kala said gently, "the council made the choice they believed would protect them. You were very young."

Empet smirked at her daughter and nodded. "Here is not the place. Come, HoD, we will eat."

"My own consists of me since my brothers and father are dead," Kadir said with a shrug. He and the other Klingons had made their own warriors' sending for those who'd left in their absences. He knew in his hearts that they were in Sto'Vo'Kor.

"And your own mother," Empet said with a glint in her eyes. "Men forget but we rule the House. She will have to approve any mate you choose just as I will have to approve Roberta for my son."

"True," Kadir said with a nod. "Uncle has no say though I will respect his opinion. I think they both will accept my choices."

"Arrogant assumption," Selneth said happily.

Kala smirked. "An honest one though. I would hope my mother approves of the man I've chosen."

"I am a warrior and that in itself entitles a man to a rightful bit of arrogance," Kadir said mildly. Alright he could admit he was slightly irked. It didn't sit well to be insulted either as a warrior or as a guest. "And I wouldn't be here if the woman of my House did not find any such possibility a bad idea."

"Which does your SoS favour?" Selneth pushed.

Feeling her cheeks darked and her eyes spark, Kala bunched up her hands into fists. What was her sister doing? She was going to scare him away!

"I'm not fool enough to speak for her," Kadir snorted. "Imagine how your own would react if you did that."

"She would be most displeased," Empet told them all, her eyes merry as she took her throne.

"Selneth, go and bring in the drinks," Kala told her, her eyes flashing dangerously when it looked as if she'd refuse.

"Fine!" she huffed as she marched out.

He still stood quite close to Kala and Kadir made no move to distance himself. Of course the choice was hers as well but he had no problem about making his preference known. "I thank you again, Ambassador, for that reception. My men and I had little other than water for years. It thins the blood too much."

"You may do me one thing in return then, HoD Kadir," Empet said regally.

"What is that, Ambassador?" he asked calmly, though curiosity and caution needled him.

"Declare your preference and marry the poor girl," Empet said with a deep smirk.

Kala wondered if it were possible to die from embarrassment because she'd be fast approaching it. "SoS," she groaned.

"At least kiss her," Empet laughed as she rose back to her feet and swept past them. "Do not fret, child, I am leaving so that you can be at peace."

Kadir watched the woman retreat with a smirk on his face. He turned back to Kala, shaking his head with some amusement. "And I always thought my own mother was pushy," he chuckled.

"Not nearly as bad as the General Empet," Kala barked out a laugh, her eyes dancing as she turned to smile at Kadir.

"Apparently not." He folded his arms over his chest, one that would be a lot broader as soon as he was fed enough over time, and looked at her speculatively. "Tell me, Kala, what do you think I should do in order to satisfy your mother's request?"

"Declare your preference," Kala smirked. "And marry your chosen one." Then she let her smirk turn to a smile as she made eye contact. "But perhaps start with a kiss?"

Kadir unfolded his arms then headed toward her, slowly, just the tips of his fangs showing. "Tell me, if I were to kiss you and seal the pact, how will you handle the sort of warrior I have become? I am not like most others."

Her breath caught and she knew she was blushing, a side-effect of her Trill heritage. "I would honour you," she told him. "I would be to you as my mother was to my father, a wife and a mistress of your House." She raised her hands for him to take if he wanted. "How would you handle a woman who is half Trill and the heir of a strong and powerful House?"

"I would hold you as the example of what a proud female ought to be like: strong, fearless, and beautiful," he said simply, taking her hands in his.

As she kept her eyes on his, she knew she would love him. "Thank you, Kadir." She closed the distance between them and let his scent fill her nose. He smelled wonderful.

"Would you agree to this if it can be worked out amongst our mothers then?" he asked softly, drawing her close to his chest.

"Very much so," she told him, laying her head on this shoulder. "Would you be my mate even if they cannot find an agreement?"

"You will find, Kala, that while I am a proud warrior, that I am not a typical warrior. I am not so steeped in the more rigid of our customs that I can't defend what I see as what's right or true," he told her, his hand stroking her hair. "Even if it is not seen so in the eyes of others."

She placed a delicate kiss on his jawline as her arms tightened around him. He felt so unsubstantial in her arms and it simply made her want to take care of him more. "You will find, Par'Mach'kai, that I am not a typical female. I will mother you when I believe you need it and be strong for you when you do not. I will defend your House against any who are unworthy but I will also have compassion, more so than my fellow Klingon females."

"Does that mean then," he said with a slow smile, "that you will not draw blood in addition to not throwing furniture?"

A smirk curled up her lip, flashing fangs. "I will draw blood when we mate."

Kadir laughed at that, throwing his head back at the feeling before kissing her as forcefully as he dared.

YES! Jubilation or joyous wonder or whatever you wanted to call it flooded through her as she kissed him. "I don't break," she murmured against his lips before she pulled him tight against her and kissed him even harder.

"Perhaps not," he murmured, his lips barely away from hers, "but I can exhibit self control. I have to." He smiled slowly. "There are many types of hunger after all and not all of them are appropriately timed."

"Stay tonight then," she asked softly, her breath warm against his lips. "Stay with me."

"And shall we let your mother and sister draw their own conclusions?" he asked dryly. "The formalities of certain things could bore a man to death."

She let out an evil cackle. "Let them use their imaginations when they hear us tonight." It was wicked of her but she hoped Selneth was green with envy.

He let out another laugh then draped an arm around her. "Come, Lady Kala, let us rejoin them for now," he said but then he dropped his voice. "Of course there may already have their ears pressed to the door."

"SoS won't," she chuckled. "Selneth might though." She felt so proud now she knew he wanted her. Such a fine man and worthy warrior.

Empet rolled her eyes at her middle girl as she sipped her blood wine. "You cannot hear through these walls, child, they are sound proofed."

"Maybe he turned her down," Selneth offered hopefully.

It was that declaration that Kala and Kadir walked in at.  "He did not."

Kadir hmmphed softly, amused yet quietly so. "I should have made a bet," was all he said.

"I never bet," Kala snickered.

"Sit down," Empet huffed. "I am hungry, come, sit and eat. You look like you need to meals. My daughter will ensure you have flesh on you again."

Kadir took a chair next to Kala then turned dark eyes onto her family. "And has there been no word from the youngest of you?" he asked. "Her friend has nothing to fear from me if he conducts himself with honor."

"She has been asked to dine with the Romulan Ambassadors," Empet told him with a smirk. "I am glad it is her and not me. They told me that they wished to be sure of the Intended of their favourite guard. Personally, I think it is so they can gather gossip and know my Tia is a chatty girl."

"There was one of them among us," Kadir mused, stroking his mustache as he recalled the man, a crafty, quick witted sort. "If he is still on the station, I will seek him out and ask what he knows of any gossip that's spread."

"I still itch to slit their throats when they yabber at me too much," Empet grumbled.

"Don't let Tia hear you say that, SoS," Kala chuckled as she reached under the table to touch Kadir's knee.

His face showed no sign of reaction to her touch but inwardly Kadir was pleased. She truly was a fine woman. He had no doubt but that his mother and uncle would agree to the match. Such things always went more smoothly if there was agreement in the family. His hand rested on her thigh, feeling how muscular yet soft she was. "It is unfortunately true with some of them from what I remember. The Romulan--his name is Taev he said afterwards--is definitely not a chatty one."

She felt her pulse skip when he touched her and she couldn't suppress a tiny smile and a glance up at him. "Tia's pet is not overly wordy either. I believe he finds his employers as equally annoying as others do but he is too loyal to say so."

Kadir shook his head slightly. "Taev is the only one I'm familiar with. All the others I've ever had encounters with were on view screens or at the end of my bat'leth." He shrugged slightly. "The times obviously changed between them."

"Times change and the Empire changes with them," Empet agreed. "Have you been told we have a new Chancellor?" There was a gleam to her eyes that spoke of her deep affection for the man and if she had been like her daughters, she would have flushed at speaking his name, knowing how close she had become to him. "Chancellor Martok. I will be returning to Qo'noS in a few days to inform the Council of your return and to ask him to lay on a celebration in your honour, HoD."

"Martok...Martok..." Kadir stroked his mustache as he mulled over the name but he finally shook his head. "It does not sound familiar. Who is he?"

Empet blinked but before she could splutter, Kala burst into bright peels of laughter and leaned to kiss his cheek firmly.. "My man," she said, her eyes dancing. "If you don't tell her you at least know General Martok, I'm sure her eyes will fall out of her head." She kissed him again for good measure.

"Excuse me ignorance but there was a severe lack of news in the camp," Kadir said dryly.

"Martok was in a camp too for a while," Kala said softly, her eyes now on her love. "His was different, or so SoS tells me."

"An Internment camp to train Jem'Hadar. He was forced to fight every day for three years against them," Empet told him though her eyes were hollow with the thought of it. "They set a Changeling in his place at Gowron's right hand. It was that creature that put us to war against the Cardassians."

Kadir knew several vile curses yet none of them seemed low enough to fit the Dominion. A warrior had to be reasonable but there was nothing reasonable about Changelings nor any of their lackeys. "And he won out over those mewling boneless things and their soulless minions?" he asked in a growl.

"He did," Empet said with pride. "He was one of the first to stand on Cardassia when it fell. He was there when the Cardassians turned on their liquid overlords. He watched it crumble." There was fire in her eyes that spoke of her own wish that she'd been there. "I should have been at his side," she growled.

"Ah but you weren't quite warrior enough for the High Council," Selneth pointed out, a smirk on her lips..

"Selneth!" Kala hissed. She squeezed Kadir's knee and leaned closer to him. "Stop it, don't push SoS' buttons."

"A wise child does not dishonor his or her parents," Kadir said with a disapproving tight lipped face. He set dark eyes on the younger sister. "There are traditions that sooner or later become a detriment to us. I see the Council has yet to rescind that foolish notion that your gender cannot be seen as warriors."

"My mother is a General," Kala explained so her mother wouldn't get angry. "Fifteen years ago, the Council revoked her commission and sent her to Earth to be the Empire's ambassador. During the war, General Martok reissued her commission only to have Gowron and the Council revoke it a second time. Now it has finally been reinstated and she commands a small fleet as well as performs her ambassadorial duties."

"Wise move," Kadir declared. "I may like this Martok already then. It is foolish--no, it is stupid to waste resources simply because of gender. Kai the ambassador and warrior, my lady."

Empet beamed and rose her goblet to him. "Kai all great warriors, HoD Kadir."

Kadir returned the salute and downed the contents of his glass in one gulp. There was a time when he or one of the other Klingons would have sniffed and tested any drink, not trusting that crazy Vorta to not poison them. He would have to check with them in the morning but Kahless it was good to be able to trust someone. "Besides which, women are fairer to look upon than men most of the time," he said with a fangless smile.

Laughing deepling, Empet inclined her head. "We would say the opposite from our point of view."

"And we have the rest of our lives to argue the point," Kala said with deep happiness as she placed another kiss on his cheek.

--
"...and I had done nothing...but shoot an unarmed Cardassian in his 
underwear."-Li Nalas

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