Month 1, Day 9
Burke studied the electronic clipboard as she and Takor walked down the corridor. "I don't see any problem," she stated. "If nothing else-"
"Wait a minnut, wait a minnut!" came a plea from up the hall.
Jane looked ahead to see two women stopped in the corridor. The AmerInd yeoman folded her arms as the other - a fabulous redhead wearing a yellow pantsuit - carefully leaned against the bulkhead. Lifting one foot, the redhead slipped out of a very tall high heel. After a moment, she had slipped out of the other also, and breathed in relief. "Now if I fall," she slurred to the other woman, "it won't be from the third floor." She sighed. "It's been yearsh shince I wore toe shoesh."
The AmerInd knelt to roll up the pant legs, revealing shapely ankles. Gathering the heels, she got up and offered a supporting hand to the redhead.
"Well, looks like you enjoyed your R&R," Jane observed with a smile.
"Nope," the redhead denied. She pulled away from the bulkhead and started off with the help of her friend. "No R&R. Gave him sheveral opportunitiesh, he didn't take a shingle one. Shtupid man."
Astounded, Burke watched the women until they disappeared around the corner. What stupid man? One of my crew? Someone on the station? What idiot could possibly refuse that? "Who-?"
"I recognized Yeoman Yellow Dog," Takor offered. "I am less certain about the other, as I have not seen her as frequently, but I believe she was Lt MacDowell."
Jane almost rebuked the alien, but realized it was doing the best it could. Actually, she was surprised it had used correct pronouns to refer to the two females. It was learning. "Yes," she agreed. "It was MacDowell."
A Little Help
Month 1, Day 9
Smitty's stomach churned as he entered Sick Bay and approached the nurse's station. "Beth," he breathed.
Both nurses looked up. The younger smiled invitingly. "Hello, Honey," she purred. Her voice drilled through his head.
Beth frowned disapprovingly at the other woman's behavior. She kept her own voice low as she came around the end of the counter. "Under the weather, Chief?"
"Save it for the doctor," she suggested, leading him into MacGregor's office. "He's here," she announced. Smitty gratefully took a seat in the nearest chair.
"Later than I thought he would be," MacGregor stated, turning from his computer. He got up to step around his desk and took the medical scanner from Temple. "What in space possessed you to drink that much, Smitty? I'm amazed you managed to get back to the ship."
"None of your business," he growled. "I didn't come here for a lecture."
"I didn't intend to give one," MacGreg returned, and mumbled to Beth, who left the room. "I assume there was a reason you had Monroe with you the other morning, and that's good, but hopefully you didn't spend last night alone." As Smitty glared at him, he sat down on the edge of the desk. "If I'd thought about it, I could have given you a reference for a companion agency."
"I didn't need your reference!" Smitty spat.
"No, you're perfectly capable of finding your own women," MacGreg mumbled. Beth returned with a loaded inoculation gun. MacGreg gave him the shot. "Hope you're not in any hurry; that will take a couple minutes to work." Smitty sighed and sat back in his chair.
"I guess you enjoyed your shore leave, Chief?" Beth asked as she made modifications to the settings on the inoculation gun.
"No," Smitty answered shortly.
"Too bad," she said, handing the gun back to the doctor. "Maybe you should have looked me up," she suggested as she left the room.
"What?" But the nurse was gone, so Smitty turned his attention to the doctor, was surprised by a started look on his face. "What did she mean by that?"
MacGreg shook himself a little. "Um, probably what I've long suspected, that half the females on this ship would like a chance to share your bed."
"Half the females on this ship are my subordinates," Smitty growled.
"Which leaves the half who aren't." MacGreg gave him another shot. "Including my nurses."
"I don't need their pity."
"Pity doesn't get you very far with a woman," MacGreg answered. "They're too smart to be taken in by that. Look, Smitty, this is me. We've been friends a long time. I can see that something has you tied in knots, and I'd like to help, if I can."
"I don't need your help. I can get my own dates."
"I know you can," MacGreg stated, setting the inoculator aside. "If you bother. Look, just tell me this, did you get any action on shore leave? Any at all?"
"Yes," he declared hotly, although this was none of MacGreg's business, as he'd already said. "Both nights!"
"Good," MacGreg stated, and moved back to his chair. "Now, maybe you should consider getting some between shore leaves."
Smitty blinked. "You mean... on ship?"
"Well, that's usually where you're at, between shore leaves."
"But... everybody would know about it!"
MacGreg blinked. "Not if you're careful."
"I don't need that sort of... complication in my life."
"Then choose carefully. Sex doesn't have to be a complication. Women need companionship, too, and the smart ones know how to be discrete."
"I don't always agree with the captain," MacGreg broke in. "And in this case, when the physiological - not to mention psychological - well-being of a crew member is involved, I'm allowed to express a different opinion. So, my prescription is that you periodically get laid, even on board. I could even make suggestions who with, but that's dipping back into my capacity as friend, rather than doctor."
"I've done all right so far," he stated, climbing to his feet.
"Oh, yes," MacGreg agreed sarcastically. "So well, you nearly drank yourself to death last night."
"You're lecturing," Smitty said coldly. "Did you give this talk to... Lt MacDowell?"
He had startled the doctor. "Mac?" He frowned thoughtfully. "That's different."
"I'm sure it is," Smitty growled, signaling the door to open. "It wasn't my bed she was in on shore leave!" He walked out; out of the office, out of sick bay, and headed for his own office. Halfway there, he realized his headache was gone, and he actually felt hungry. Well, he knows his medicine. But the rest of it - that's none of his business.