STF

Old Habits - New Adventures

Posted Nov. 9, 2020, 4:58 a.m. by Lieutenant Commander Akirel Ros (Consultant Researcher) (David Shotton)

The door that separated the cold of the night air outside the small bar in the mining settlement swung open, briefly, as a man stepped through and quickly shut it behind him. “Oh damn it all,” a sigh accompanied the words as the bartender noted who had stepped through the door. It wasn’t like the visit was unexpected, not here where the bar was almost the only thing to do in the settlement that kept a person out of trouble, mostly. Almost the only thing, but the Bajoran who had walked through had managed to find the other thing to do that kept one out of trouble with the law. The law wasn’t what the barkeep was sighing about however, it was the fact that the Bajoran had managed to stir up trouble by doing the other thing that people did to keep out of trouble. The man had talent, that was for sure.

Adjusting his jacket as he walked, a flash of metal from the man’s earring drew the bartenders eyes towards the dangling object, much as it did most nights he had been here. More out of curiosity, the rough exterior of the man seemed at odds with the polished, not-a-scratch finish in the metal of the earring. The Bajoran stopped by the old fashioned juke box that someone had acquired somewhere, entered a few songs set to play after the current tune had finished, and continued to the bar. “What’s in the bottle Jim?” The Bajoran asked, sliding onto a barstool and grinning at the barkeep, whose name wasn’t Jim at all, but he had given up trying to correct the man.

“Scotch, you sure you want to be here tonight? I thought you might want to lay low for a bit after last night.” The Bajoran smirked and slid a few credits over the counter, clearly buying the half empty bottle that ‘Jim’ had left out from tidying the bar between customers. “Why? What happened last night?” he asked as his song began to play on the jukebox and the barkeep slid a glass towards him. The song was catchy, light and instantly gave the small bar a distinct ‘space western’ feel to it.

Got a gypsy soul, I’m a rebel and rogue
And I’m always on the run
With a fire inside, I ain’t ever gonna die
I’m a locked and loaded gun
When the matches strike and the gasoline lights
It’s only just begun

“You got talking to the wrong girl,” a low, gruff voice came from behind the Bajoran. “Then, you left here with the wrong girl.” Grinning wider, the Bajoran poured himself a drink and spun in the seat to face the voice, making sure to take a decent mouthful as he did so.

One thing I learned, is you can watch it all burn
But the flame ain’t ever done

The voice belonged to a Nausiccan, this one with particularly large bone ridges and tusks, and an equally oversized pair of biceps. “That’s what happened last night,” the Naussican continued, “and now you and I have a problem.”

“We do?” The Bajoran asked, and took another drink. “Don’t tell me you’re jealous I didn’t go home with you instead. I can’t please everybody you know.” The ripple of laughter that came from a very small number of tables behind the Naussican, didn’t improve the big mans mood in the slightest. “She insisted, you know? She was horny after all.” The Bajoran stood up now, and with a smirk, tapped the tusk protruding out of the side of the Naussicans mouth. Another laugh came from another being that had walked up to them, this one looking oddly frog like but it was giggling at the Naussican as it put together the joke. The woman the Bajoran had gone home with after all, was a Naussican. Her tusks had been only slightly less impressive than the man standing in front of the Bajoran.

Ooh
Raise ‘em up a little higher, your lighters
Outlaws and outsiders
Ooh

The punch was quick, the big Naussican hardly had to move a muscle as his fist impacted the Bajorans stomach, doubling the man over and bringing him to his knees while the glass fell away to the side, spilling the last of it’s contents. “Oh god,” the Bajoran gasped for air, holding his stomach. “You’re wearing a knuckle plate, aren’t you big guy. That’s cheating you know.” Grasping the Bajoran by the hair, he pulled the downed man to his feet and held him on his tip toes. “That was my girl, wrinkle nose. We have a problem.” He moved his face closer to the Bajoran, nostrils flaring in anger as he raised his fist, revealing the studded knuckle plate he was wearing and had rammed into the Bajorans stomach.

“Yeah, we do. Your breath stinks.” The Bajoran countered, and for a moment the eyes of the two men met closely. It seemed that deep inside the Bajoran, a flash of fire and will existed that was barely contained within him, something primal and barely held in check. It made the Naussican pause, despite the verbal jab.

Some call me a renegade, the enemy
Throw your hands up if you feel the same
Whoa, living life at the edge
Just say what you wanna say, or walk away
I’ll stand tall when there’s hell to pay

There was a jolt, a loud buzz that killed what little conversation remained in the room as the Naussican flew backwards from the impact of the Bajorans own fist in his stomach. As the big Naussican crashed through a nearby table, flipping over and landing on his stomach eyes that turned to the Bajoran would note he was wearing his own knuckle plate, but his one had energy arcing between terminals that had shocked and amplified his own punch to a much greater extent.

Ain’t no power higher
We’re the outlaws and outsiders
Mm, yeah

The Frog-man looked at the downed Naussican stunned, then drew a short, hard blackjack and turned to face the Bajoran just in time to collect the half-empty bottle that the man had reached back and picked up from the counter top, and swung like a bat into the frog mans head, smashing it and dropping the frog-man like a wet sack onto the floor.

“You know you’re paying for the damage right, Ros?” The Barkeep said while he began to lift glasses from the counter to store them safely underneath, as a half dozen men stood up from their tables in the bar and began to approach Akirel Ros. “I’m hurt that you think I wouldn’t, Jim, after all we have been through.” Ros grinned at the man, then turned back to the group approaching him.

And that, was how the fight started.

Lt Cmdr Akirel Ros, Ex- Starfleet Intelligence Agent on Suzamme Prime.


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