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Salut aux Chefs

Posted on 29 Jan 2020 @ 6:38pm by Commander Jayla Kij & Senior Chief Petty Officer Alexander Rylan

Mission: Sentience
Location: Sickbay
Timeline: MD1 | 1100

Master Chief Kai Mazen walked into Sickbay, his kynikoid beagle, Fin, obediently keeping step with him. His eyes scanned the room and he admired the efficiency of the staff, especially the corpsmen and the other enlisted medical staff. It was almost like they had a decent senior NCO in this department... which Kai knew they did because Kai knew the man. Senior Chief Corpsman Alexander Rylan. They'd shed some of the same blood in the same mud, as the saying went, and Kai had actually met Rylan when Rylan was a young corpsman with the Marines towards the end of the Dominion War. They'd made an impression on each other and had kept in touch over the years. He grinned when he saw Rylan talking to Commander Jayla Kij, it looked like. From correspondence with Alex, Kai knew the two were seeing each other. It was risky, being in an intimate, romantic relationship with an immediate superior, but Kai was happy for the kid nonetheless. Kai walked up to the two of them.

"Excuse me," Kai said. "But are you Alex Rylan? Wow. You are! I almost didn't recognize you sober with your fly zipped!"

Alex frowned. "And from the smell, I'm guessing you're Master Chief Kai Mazen? I mean, no one in Security bathes regularly, but the Kai Mazen I remember stank worse than any of the other MAs I know."

The two men scowled at each other for another moment and then Kai grinned. "How you doing, kid?"

Alex grinned back. "Not bad, Old Man," he said. "You?"

"Eh," Kai said. "Middle age comes to most of us. Can't really complain much. Most of the alternatives to middle age involve death, and I'm not done living yet." Kai turned to Jayla. "Good to see you again, Commander. I was hoping to get my entrance physical out of the way."

"Absolutely," answered Jayla. "I love it when people come in of their own accord before I have to remind them. I think I like this guy," she added to Alex.

"He's alright, I guess," Alex said with a grin.

"Lead the way, Commander," Kai said.

"This way," replied Jayla, leading him to the nearest bio bed. "Hop up here and we'll get started. Any complaints?" she asked, pulling out her tricorder.

"Nothing more than the usual middle age complaints," Kai said, hopping up on the indicated bed. "I get achy more often than I'd like, exercise isn't as easy as it once was, but I'm far from an invalid. I push myself to keep in shape. I want to stay as mobile as possible so when they stick me in the old spacer's home in fifty years or so, I'm able to walk to the head on my own power, and hopefully other places as well."

"You and me both," agreed Jayla with a trademark grin. "Nobody wants help to the head."

"No, they don't," Kai said. Then he grinned. "I must say, Doc, you're even prettier than you were at eighteen." When Jayla shot him a quizzical look, he laughed. "When I met Rylan here, he was a young, inexperienced kid, well trained, smart, smarter than he gives himself credit for being, brave as Hell, but in way over his head. His platoon sergeant told me that there were two things keeping him from going under completely. His faith and pictures of you that he kept on a PaDD. Some of them were of the two of you. His buddies apparently referred to you as The One Who Got Away. I'm glad you two finally reconnected."

"Really?" Alex said. "Thanks. I was saving that story for just the right moment. Thanks a lot." But Alex was smiling while he said this, not embarrassed at all. The story was true and it was clear that his devotion to Jayla for all of those years, even after they were apart, though sometimes on the back burner, had finally paid off.

"Yeah, he was a little obsessed," she agreed, giggling. "If I'd been in my right mind, I might have appreciated it. Instead, I knocked out his front teeth."

Kai laughed. "Alex told me about that," he said. "Remind me not to piss you off."

“Never fear,” she replied, switching to secondary scans. “That’s very difficult to do these days.”

"That's good," Kai said. "I'd like to keep my original teeth for as long as I can." Kai grinned. "So give it to me straight, Doc. Will I always be this handsome and irresistible? Or will you have to amputate my natural charm and beauty?"

Alex rolled his eyes. "She's spoken for, you Old Goat," he said.

Kai laughed. "Just remember I'm the top Old Goat on this boat," he said. "Heh. Rhyme."

“Oh, just what I need!” laughed Jayla. “Flirting! And two men fighting over me. My day is now complete!”

Kai frowned. "I hope you know, Alex, that I would never use my rank to horn in on your relationship," he said. "I've seen officers and senior NCOs use their rank or position to interfere with a subordinate's love life and I think that kind of thing is a disgusting abuse of power and a gross betrayal of the trust our subordinates put in us."

Alex nodded. "I know," he said. "That's one of the reasons most of your subordinates would follow you into the jaws of death if the situation called for it."

“Aw, no fight?” asked Jayla, eyes twinkling. “My money was on Alex, anyway.”

"Yeah," Kai said. "Well, he was a Raider. Those guys are nucking futs. If I managed to lock him down, Alex would probably chew his own arm off and beat me to death with it. So, we done? Am I going to live? Or should I plan to be dead by the end of watch?"

With a snicker of pure delight, Jayla closed her tricorder. “No such luck,” she said. “You’ll have to report for duty. You’re the picture of perfect health.”

"Oh, well," Kai said. "If I must..." then he grinned. "Nice to meet you, Commander. I look forward to serving with you."

"Likewise," agreed Jayla with a grin. "It'll definitely be interesting."


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