The day had been long and tough. Lauren needed to drink. Normally she would have curled up at the end of Mike’s bar and ordered her usual. Today however she needed isolation. What she was about to talk about definitely violated doctor-patient privilege. She had debated in her office where she would go. The logical place was the counseling department but Lauren had had enough counseling in her life to choke a horse. The years of someone trying to tell her how to think after she left Orion, only led her to push things down deeper.
Rand was on duty and while he probably wouldn’t have minded the company, Lauren needed to push down the day with copious amounts of booze, real booze which only one spot on the ship had an open door policy to drink until you passed out. Over the past few years, Lauren and Nash had settled into a co-dependence type relationship.
Both of them had more baggage than they could bear, yet both of them kept it locked down so tight only command knew all the details. Lauren’s due to the fact she was a minor and Nash due to the fact it was classified. Reaching his office, Lauren raised a fist and pounded it twice before palming the control on his door and walking in without permission. “Nash,” she announced her presence by calling his name, “I need the hard stuff. Don’t make me hypo you to get it. Rand is…was in your department. Anesthizine and I are best friends and I am not afraid of making this a ménage à trois instead of a duo if you try to Bogart the booze.”
Dropping into one of the leather, high-back chairs in his office, Lauren let the familiar scents surround her. There was the hint of tobacco lying in the air. The man was rarely without a stogie protruding from his lips. She often wondered if the man smoked them or used them as an accessory much like the CO did her coffee mug. No one could smoke on the ship except in designated areas, but Nash did not seem the type to travel to the smoking area for a fifteen-minute break. He was more the type to light it up and damn the consequences when they happened. This is what attracted Lauren to the man in the first place. Ethan Nash was superiorly and unequivocally confident yet somehow balanced this without being arrogant or haughty. When he entered a room he commanded it either by directly taking charge or silently from the background. He often had the graveyard shift on the bridge citing he liked the stillness and peace that came from the wee hours of the dark. Lauren however thought otherwise. Too many young officers talked about how Lt. Commander Nash one on one was one of the best senior officers on the ship. They spoke of how he let those under him learn and strive for the best. The calm, patient, introspective teacher was not something one immediately saw when looking at the gruff, hardened exterior but looking under the exterior always showed ones true character. Individuals just needed to take the time to peel back what they assumed and concentrate on what they knew. Lauren and Nash were very similar in this regard.
Curling up in his chair, she tucked her legs under her body and locked eyes with the man before her. “I need a drink,” she said emphatically. “Do you wanna have a drink?” Lauren added in a softer tone. Right now she needed someone. Nash of all the people in the galaxy would soo understand.
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