"Yenta" by Lieutenant Sara Crusher and Lieutenant JG Cyanah Kaelyre There is an old Earth word that would perfectly describe Sorcha Bozich, Sara's maternal Betazoid grandmother, Yenta! She was a meddling old woman who made the character of Auntie Mame look calm and normal. Sara couldn't believe the way her grandmother had gone on and on about the wedding, making plans and demands and setting guest lists. She and Cy hadn't even picked a date, or talked about ceremonies, they were still working on the 'who do we tell first?' level of this event. Sara sighed and just shook her head and she hurried to change her clothes. She was now nearly fifteen minutes late for her date with Cyanah on the holodeck and she still had to grab her long boots from the back of the closet. It was another five minutes before Sara was heading down the corridor towards holodeck, braiding her hair while she walked. Hopefully an evening horseback riding with her favorite person in the world would help her forget that this was only the beginning. As Sara around the last corner she saw Cyanah standing by the holodeck doors. Instantly her frustrated frown turned into a smile. "Sorry I'm late. Had a make a call that got out of control," she said breathlessly as she loaded the program. "You ready?" Cyanah playfully swatted at Sara with her riding crop. "Of course I'm ready," she smiled. "I've been standing here in this getup for fifteen minutes!" Cyanah was dressed to make an English riding instructor proud; she wore black breeches tucked into knee-high riding boots, a black vest over a white shirt, and her red hair was done up in a bun under her black classic half-helmet. "What happened?" Sara laughed as she stepped out of reach of the riding crop and then pressed the final button on the console. It only took a few seconds for the holodeck to recreate a sprawling English countryside estate complete with apple orchard, so she took the few seconds she had and pulled Cyanah closer to her as she leaned on the doors. "I'm sorry I kept you standing out here like that, but you really do look cute in that outfit." Sara smiled playfully at Cyanah then kissed her quickly just before the doors opened behind them. Cyanah was suitably impressed as she took in the beauty of the landscape. The smell of the air was clean and fresh, a welcome change from the recycled shipboard atmosphere. As they stepped inside the holodeck and the doors disappeared behind them, Cyanah took Sara's hand and squeezed it. "This is beautiful, but you never answered my question." "Nothing happened, Sweetie, really, I just called home and ended up in a rather long conversation with my grandmother is all." Sara smiled and then started towards the stables where she had her normal horse, and a horse she'd had added to her programs just for Cyanah, waiting for them. She didn't want to trouble Cyanah with the rantings of an old woman or spoil their evening so she kept her answer a vague as possible. "So I figure you told her about our plans?" Sara just chucked a bit. "I tried telling her about our plans," she said as she walked into the stalls, returning a few minutes later with two saddled horses. She led them out of the stables and into the paddock without saying a word. After loosely wrapping the lead of her black mare to a post she walked the chestnut mare over to Cyanah and added. "The thing is, she somehow misunderstood the 'our' part." Looking up at the mare, Cyanah petted gingerly her nose, and received a pleasant snort in reply. "I've never seen a horse in person. They're magnificent, even holographic ones." She continued to acquaint herself with the horse as she asked, "Misunderstood, huh? How?" As Sara checked the saddle straps and ran her hand along the mare's neck, she was grateful for the fact that she wasn't any more Betazoid then she was. Full Betazoids tended to be afraid of large animals because they could sense the animal's raw and wild emotions. As she came back around to the front to stand next to Cyanah she sighed and shook her head again. "I barely got the words out before she started planning every little detail. Our wedding went from yours and mine to hers in a matter of milliseconds." "Oh. alright. so, is she, um, coming to the ship, then?" Sara stopped adjusting the horse's bridle and turned to look at Cyanah. "Alright? Sweetie, I don't think you understand. She's not only coming to the ship to attend the wedding, she's coming to plan it. All of it! Her way! Which means she's already working ways to merge Delosian traditions with a fully Betazed ceremony." Cyanah swallowed and looked back at Sara. "All of it. Our wedding, on our home, the Banshee, won't be. ours?" "Of course it'll be ours," Sara said reassuringly as walked over and pulled Cyanah into a hug. "I didn't say I was going to let her take over, only that she thinks she is. I'll make sure she knows we're doing this our way, I promise." "Alright," Cyanah replied. "I trust you. Just as long as she knows we're not doing this in the nude!" Sara bit her bottom lip and gave Cyanah a half smile. "That'll be the hardest factor in all this to get her back off of. I mean I got a ten page letter after the Troi reception because the Ambassador has a big mouth, but she'll just have to deal with it.... Right?" Sara shook her head and then went back to attending to the horses as she thought more about it. "When it's all said and done she'll be ok with everything because it'll make me happy." Sara paused a moment and then turned to look a Cyanah again with a worried look on her face. "I hope." "Ten pages? Goodness, she sounds like quite a character, and I'm glad you're the one dealing with her! Though, when she arrives, I don't know how I'll stand up." She turned her attention to the horses. "So, how do we get started?" "Don't worry, Sweetie. You'll be fine and she'll adore you almost as much as I do." Sara smiled brightly. "Ok, first lesson: Getting on the horse." She continued to smile as she pointed to the stirrup. "Put your left foot in here like this and then swing your right leg over like this." In one smooth motion Sara was in the saddle and smiling down at Cyanah. "Second lesson: Getting downf." Sara held the reins tightly as she brought her right leg back over the horse's back and onto the ground, followed quickly by her left. Cyanah eyed the stirrup and lifted her leg, placing her left foot in it. Piece of cake, she thought, as she tried to swing her right leg over the horse. Her left foot slipped out of the stirrup, landing her unceremoniously on her rear. "Ow!" came her indignant reply. The horse looked down at her with an expression that might be taken as amused. Sara bit back a giggle as she squatted down next to Cyanah. "Cy, are you ok?" Standing gingerly, Cyanah replied. "Just a bruised butt, I think." Again Sara found herself biting back a giggle. "Well then, I guess it's a good thing you're engaged to a doctor who knows exactly how to treat such an injury." Sara winked playfully at Cyanah before taking her and the horse over to a series of small wooden steps. "Wanna try again? Those make it a little easier." "Oh, perfect!" Cyanah climbed the steps and managed to get on the horse this time. "You could have given me those on the first try, you know," she said with a laugh. "Yep, I could've," Sara replied with a laugh before walking over to her own horse. A few seconds later she came up along side of Cyanah and steadied both horses as she started in on how to use the rains and how to control the horse's speed. "You ready to give it a go?" she asked as she finally fastened her own helmet beneath her chin. "As ready as I'll ever be," came Cyanah's reply as she gripped the reins and leaned over to scratch the horse behind the ears. "How do I drive?" Sara leaned over and readjusted Cyanah's grip on the reins and then, while she still had her hand on Cyanah's, she showed her how to 'drive.' "Always keep a firm hold on these. It lets her know that you expect her full attention. Pull them in the direction you wanna go to get her to turn. So if you wanna go left you do this." Sara pulled the reins and their hands in the right direction and the horse shifted to the left. Then she pulled back a little to get the horse steady again before letting go. "You pull back like that gently to slow her down or to keep her straight. Give it a little more of a tug to stop her." Cyanah pulled on the reins as she was shown and seemed surprised when the horse actually started to move beneath her. Sara easily caught up, and the two were riding across the English countryside toward an apple orchard in the distance. Cyanah soon discovered that steering wasn't as difficult as she'd anticipated, and put on some speed, enjoying the rush of the wind in her face. Remembering that the holodeck safeties were on, Cyanah reached up and unbuckled the chinstrap of her helmet, threw it off to the side, then freed her hair of the restraining bun to allow it to stream out behind her like a fiery tail. Sara had been right earlier when she thought this little outing would be just what she needed to overcome her grandmother problem. Watching Cyanah, and feeling the rush of being on horseback pushed all of that aside. As they approached the path that weaved though the orchard leading to the hidden picnic she'd added to the program, she smiled. The next few weeks would be busy, but as she looked over at Cyanah, she knew that in the end, it would all be more than worth it.