[USS Vanguard] RPG: The Boys in Blue

  • From: "Andy W. Ho" <andywoho@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: ncv80221@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 14 Nov 2004 19:32:11 -0800 (PST)

Cadet Dominic Santos
Cha Cha Cha Bar/Restaurant
After "More in the Bar"

What happened next happened so fast.

Cadet Santos smiled and nodded at something Jaav E'thexx said as they
reached for more calamari. Zena Quetan laughed and playfully punched
Shar in the shoulder over something he said. Cadet Mandrake sipped his
drink and watched Zena. Sam McCaw crossed his legs and scratched the
back of his head, unaware of Becky Armitage, walking delicately with a
very full glass toward Sam. A couple sauntered past Armitage, and she
turned aside at the last moment. She managed to keep the drink from
spilling. Becky blew her breath through her lips, relief washing over

As she approached Sam, she stared at the back of his head. She stood
behind him and wondered how to approach him. Should she clear her
throat? Should she simply set the drink down and walk off? Should

Suddenly, a loud squeal came from behind her at the same moment she
felt herself being jostled hard, directly into Sam's chair. She watched
in slow-motion as the glass emptied itself onto the back of Sam's head.
He flinched and jumped up as the source of the squeal--a cadet, like
her--stopped and turned.

She was a honey brunette with shoulder length hair, a playful gleam in
her eyes. Judging from her cadet's pips, a year ahead of Armitage. The
playfulness went out of her eyes as she saw the aftermath of what she
had done. Her eyes went wide and her mouth formed a little "O."

"Honey! What did I do? I'm so, so sorry..." the cadet said.

"Causing my friends problems, Mandy?" Cadet Santos was on his feet and
taking in the entire situation with his quick, attentive eyes. He had a
smile--warm as caramel--on his face that didn't reach all the way to
his eyes.

"Nick!" she said, playfully slapping his arm. "It was you I was coming
to see! It's your fault!"

Santos chuckled and grabbed her, nuzzling her neck. Quetan and Mandrake
exchanged a look, Quetan hiding a smile (but mostly failing at it).
Shar covered his mouth and cleared his throat.

[Note: Capt. Mandy Miller went on to command the USS Chrysalis,
Santos's second posting and the starship where he served as Operations
Manager. She was last mentioned during flashback in the Nexus Ribbon

"Sam," Armitage stuttered. "I am so, so sorry."

Santos said, "Let me make it up to you, Sam. I'll get you another
drink. Ask your friend to sit down with us."

Sam held up his hand. "No," he replied. "No. Really, it's okay." Then
he looked up and grinned, and it was the old Sam again. "I'm not made
of sugar; I won't melt."

Armitage grinned. At that moment, she could have taken a phaser shot
meant for him. Santos happened to glance at the bar while this was
going on (since he was intent on getting another drink for Sam). He
frowned at what he saw. The bartender, a girl about their age, was
literally turning red in the face. She was nearly as red as the bottle
of ketchup she was squeezing so hard, it looked ready to explode.

"I'll help you clean up," Armitage told Sam.

They walked to the bar together where Armitage asked the bartender for
a clean, slightly moistened rag. The bartender studied Armitage so long
that Santos began to think that she wouldn't give them the rag. She
slowly reached across the bar and handed a rag to Armitage. She offered
Armitage a tight smile that lasted no more than a second.

Armitage faced Sam and he said, "Well, actually, it's down the back of
my neck. And now dribbling into my back."

She reached around carefully and wiped the back of his head even as she
kept her eyes on his face.

Santos continued to study this interesting exchange, but he was
distracted when Mandy settled on his lap and threw her arms around his

"So how are you doing?" she whispered in his ear.

"Better now that you're here," Santos said. He flashed a grin at the
same time that Quetan rolled her eyes and looked at Mandrake. Mandrake
covered his mouth and tried not to laugh. He turned it into one of
those laughs-turned-coughs. Santos hardly heard them.

"Well, well, well. Isn't this a picture? All the pink skins, pretty in
a row."

Santos's heart beat a little faster and he felt his blood rising. He
would know that voice anywhere.

Santos looked around Miller at the Bolian, Benzite, and Andorian
standing before his friends.

"K'abl," he said. He addressed the Andorian. "I thought I smelled
something bad in here."

The Andorian pretended he didn't hear the insult. "Does it chafe very
much, Santos? Does it chafe every time you see the student rankings and
see me just above you?"

Santos sipped his drink and considered his options. He could invite the
Blue Troupe (as they were called) to sit down and have a drink, talk
things out. He could get up and ask his friends to leave with him for
more neutral territory. Or he could do something utterly preposterous
and liable to get him kicked out of the Academy.

The hell with it, he thought.

"Is this about my securing a position to the Vulcan Science Academy?
The same one you submitted an application for?" He didn't have to look
up to know that K'abl was narrowing his eyes and deciding how best to
kill Santos. He leaned into Mandy and whispered "Stand up for a minute"
into her ear. She moved off his lap into the seat next to his and
stared at Santos, then at K'abl, but back to Santos. It seemed like the
entire bar was holding its breath to see what Santos (and K'abl) would
do next.

Santos calmly produced another cigarillo, placed it between his lips,
and produced his lighter. He reached for his drink because he knew what
was coming next.

"I challenge you, Santos! For the sake of my honor, I challenge you to
a duel! For your life!" K'abl moved toward Santos as his friends, the
Benzite and the Bolian, blocked the others from getting to K'abl first.

In one swift move, Santos flicked open his lighter, swallowed his
entire drink and held it in his mouth and blew the liquor at the flame,
turning his head toward the Andorian. The plume of flame rose in front
of the Andorian, and Santos laughed, he laughed to see their reactions.

And then (you guessed it) all hell broke loose.

OoC: To the crew of the Vanguard. To the players of the Starship
Vanguard PbeM game--may we forever wait in bars looking for trouble and
come out on the winning side. ;)

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