Original post Alindor’s quarters https://www.star-fleet.com/core/stf5/saracen/notes/44421/
“Who were you on the phone with we are going to…be....late. You aren’t wearing that are you,” Halia said slowly drawing out each word as she put in an earrings. His outfit was fine. It was just a convenient excuse as to why they were going to be late and. It the fact she hadn’t been ready. Klingons has short tempers anyway. Being late for a reservation was bound to put the maitre d’ in a foul temperament. Luckily her husband spent the past thirty years dealing with people in foul moods. He had survived his daughters teens years so a pissy Klingon was no match.
“What? You don’t like this? You bought it for me, you made me wear it to every damn dinner your mom asks us to go to. I swear I am not going to another one, that family home is horrid. I am not going to eat something she forgot a recipe to and taste half the flavor… she cooks with indifference Halia!” Robert said as he looked at her sternly as he moved beside her to kiss her on her cheek.
“Fine don’t change. You look alright and chef Otraw Ino will not hold our table past 7,” Halia acted like she had deftly negotiated a cantankerous diplomatic event.
“Damn right I look good… and the Klingons will be fine. What’s the worst they going to do make me fight to the death? I think we outlawed that anyway in federation space anyway.
“So who were you talking to,” she asked again fixing a stray hair in the mirror.
“That boy…” was all he said as he shook his head, he was clearly annoyed but there was the smallest of smiles on his face. Holding a secret like he had was a wonderful moment he got over his wife. He didn’t always get a chance to know something before her.
“Oh. Oh. Oh,” she said a bit more surprised with each word she uttered. “You mean Jarred and Kalani,” she said looked at her husband’s reflection in the mirror. It was not like she hadn’t met the man Kalani was seeing before. There was the official comm call where Kal had introduced him. The boy had seemed nice enough but slightly on edge. The second meeting was a little more relaxed but he had been called away twice due to a concern with the ship. Each time she saw more and more why her daughter loved him. The meetings after that Halia watched as the doting boyfriend turned into a typical boyfriend.
“No, not Kalani… just him.” Robert said as he walked into the bathroom as he began to shave and finish the last couple of things he had left to do. “You want to remind me again why we like him? Ex wife, former alcoholic, secret kid… I swear at times you have been giving him too many chances Halia.”
“Me,” she feigned confusion. “You are the husband and father. I don’t do anything you don’t agree to.” Like most marriages, Robert and Halia had the delicate balance firmly established where Robert was figurehead but Halia held all the power. This relationship had developed over the years creating the dynamic where when either one didn’t want to deal with a problem they could pawn it off on each other claiming they were the power base in a family. “Anyway our daughter likes him,” Halia said in a matter of fact tone. Jarred Alindor had been through many phases of acceptance in the Kane household. The initial meeting left Halia completely enamored with the guy. He has been charming and sweet and appeared to be utterly in love with her daughter. Private mother-daughter conversations about him, however, caused questions to roll in like the waves at Waimea Bay. With her husband’s profession, Halia understood people changed. Yet on paper Jarred was either the Boy Scout saint or a hot mess any woman should run from. Robert had spent many nights in the darkness of their bedroom listening to Halia both sing Jarred’s praises and debate whether Robert should step in and talk some sense into their daughter.
“Besides my father had his reservations about you to and you worked out fine,” Halia gave him the side-eye as she talked. The comparison was in no way, shape, or form the same except that they both included a father and daughter; however, from what she could tell past the paper lists of pros and cons, Jarred Alindor seemed like a good guy. It was half a second later that it dawned on Halia that Jarred hadn’t ever commed by himself that she knew of. This call could only have one purpose.
“Is she okay,” Halia instantly went into mom mode. “Did she get bitten by that damn palooian spider thing again. You know I told her she needed to get rid of that thing. It is not cute with big eyes,” she grumbled clearly annoyed.
“Well there is something…” he said as he came from the bathroom as he saw his wife, looking her over the smallest of twinkles in his eyes.
“Then the Risan shrimp? Last time she was trying to establish the biome it bit her and Kalani needed half a dozen stitches. You would think she would have learned to just leave them be. Is she okay? Did it get anything other than her fingers? ” Halai was not surprised her daughter had been bitten again. The creature was beautiful but beauty had a bite as her mother used to say.
“No nothing like that… she…” he said as she got cut off once again.
“Oh my god, it was the Aldebaran mud leech,” she said in a matter of fact tone. “Lord I swear I was about to point out that she is a Federation officer and not a sixteen-year-old teenager when I saw those marks up and down her arm and neck. It was like that times when she was seventeen and went swimming after prom in that cenote.”
“A what? No woman she’s…”
“Cardassian mole,” she continued to fire off all the critters in that zoo of horrors getting more and more annoyed that her husband was not responding to any of the animals Kalani had. “If you need to I can bring up that manual she sent inventorying the species she has. If you tell me whether is has fins, fur, scales or skin, I can move this process along,” she said helpfully.
“She’s fine woman, Jarred asked me if he could ask her to marry him.” he said, cutting the topic short there he didn’t seem like he wanted to add more details. He knew sometimes you just had to make a woman want more first before giving it to her.
Marry her,” Halia said in a slow drawl. “You mean like legally?” The words her husband was using took a few minutes to process.
“Is there an illegal version?” Robert asked, looking at her with a perplexed look.
“You mean become Mrs. Kalani Alindor,” she said the name slowly as if trying it out for the first time. Halia was not shocked hearing this. It was clear that her daughter thought this boy hung the moon yet the implications of the question did shock her. Slowly she moved to a living room chair and lowered herself down. Her face was blank and she stared off as if in a coma state.
“Oh now you are not wanting him in the family, you tell me to give him all the chances and the second he wants to shack up forever you step back. What is it? You want him to be with her or not?” Robert asked her, wondering what she expected married might mean. “I mean we can pull the whole thing, make her come home leave forever with us in a tower, I have said that from day one it was an option.”
“What,” she looked at her husband like he was crazy. “I mean I am all about you making her come home but we just got a baby, grandpa,” Halia beamed. “You know Jarred comes with Elizabeth. That little girl is about the cutest thing I have ever seen and it’s not like Kalani has done anything to get me to grandma status. You just behave. I don’t want you getting all crazy like you do at times. Nothing is going to stop me from having that grandbaby on my mantle Robert.” Moving across the room Halai picked up the comm.
“Leilani,” Halai winked at her husband. Leilani, Halia sister, had five grandkids and never stopped talking about them. At least this time Halia could do a little bragging. “I have some news for you.” Stopping before she broke the news, Halia glanced at Robert. “You did say yes, right? If not you best get on that phone and beg that boy to take your ‘yes you can have my daughter’ speech.” Robert had known his wife long enough that at least three things were gonna happen tonight. First, he was not going to get his Klingon dish and have to work weeks to land another reservation. Second, he was going to be asked half a dozen times if he was sure he told Jarred Alindor yes he had permission. Third, his wife was going to be on the phone having a hen party with her sister for the next couple of hours.
“Daddy I got them,” Lizzie yelled running through the door as fast as she could. “Can we go do it now,” she plowed into Jarred’s body-hugging him. Looking up at him she jumped up and down stepping on Jarred’s feet with every second or third bounce. “You said go get Nana and PaPa. I did and told them the good news. That you are marrying Kalani.” Elizabeth was overjoyed with the idea of everything including the part where they were going to have a fancy party. “So can we go tell Kalani the news. Can we daddy? Can we?”
Samantha Alindor was a bit more reserved but the smile on her showed she was happy about the information shared probably as exuberantly in her quarters as Lizzie was displaying now. “So Kalani doesn’t know yet,” Samantha said getting a more surprised expression on her face. The way Lizzie explained it, it was a done deal.” Tossing her coat over the nearest chair, Samantha moved to the replicator for some coffee.
“Lizzie baby why don’t you go watch some holo’s in your room for a few minutes,” Samantha suggested with a smile.
“No. Daddy and I are leaving to go get Kalani,” she said immediately to her grandmother as she took Jarred’s hand in hers.
Samantha opened her mouth to tell Lizzie it wasn’t a choice but stopped. Lizzie was her granddaughter and not a daughter. Times like this were every hard for her to give up parental control yet Jarred was her father. Giving her son a look, Sam hoped he caught on and would give her an adult moment.
“Maybe you could,” she nodded at Lizzie hoping Jarred would tell his daughter to go to her room. This was an adult conversation and would be so much easier without Lizzie underfoot. Samantha paused as the single most important debate a parent had ran through her head: pick your battles. It only took a second for Sam to realize Lizzie in the room was not the battle she wanted to fight because Jarred was not going to give in.
“Jarred,” Samantha said in a soft tone and crossed the room. Embracing her son, she gave him a long hug. “Baby I have not seen you this happy in a long time. Kalani is an amazing girl but you have only been with her what…a couple of months. You were with Lily for a year. Don’t get me wrong. I think you and Kalani are perfect together but are you sure?” Moving back she looked up in her son’s eyes. The last five years had shown her so many sides of her son. The past six months showed her the Jarred she used to know before the booze, crazy ex-wife, string of girlfriends, and surprise baby had sent him alternating between normalcy and depressed. Samantha knew Kalani had some part to play with this transition but she barely knew the young woman that her son planned to make a daughter in law. All she wanted was for her son to be happy and whoever could make him go to bed feeling loved and safe each night was perfect in her mind.
Lt. Kalani Kane Science.
“Lilly and I dated for like a hot three months before she left for a year. Then she came back and… I don’t know why but bam we were engaged. Maybe I missed her I don’t know but we didn’t talk while she was gone.” Jarred paused as he took a deep breath, he never knew for certain why he jumped so fast into marrying Lilly but looking back he wasn’t even sure it was love anymore.
“So you jumped into that…not really knowing her,” Samantha added a bit of description to the story. Samantha had nothing against Kalani. Frankly, Kalani seemed like the perfect girl for Jarred but Samantha needed to know this in her heart and soul. She also needed Jarred to convince her that Kalani was not like the other women that had been in his life.
“Kalani and I have been together far longer than that, and I have been taking things slowly. I had her move in, you guys have been here since Lizzie came to live here for the past month and I am happy, truly. Even with pops here I am happy, but… Lizzie deserves a real mommy, someone who loves her.” Jarred stopped as he looked over at his daughter, pulling her up on his lap he gave her a small squeeze as he loved on her gently.
“Baby do not take this wrong but you are my baby,” Samantha laid a hand on Jarred’s leg taking a deep breath.
“Just like I’m daddy’s baby,” Lizzie added happily. She didn’t understand what her Nana and Daddy were talking about but wanted to. She had felt so included early and everyone seemed so happy. Now her Nana and daddy were acting like they were having a happy conversation but not. Lizzie hoped she was helping the conversation or at least adding to it with her comment. Even if Lizzie wasn’t, there was one way to make sure she stayed a part of the conversation. Laying on on Jarred, Lizzie let her body go limp in his arms. This always kept her daddy calm even when talking to her PaPa so it should work when he was talking to her Nana.
“Lilly didn’t give a damn, and I want a wife that doesn’t flee the day after our marriage. I don’t buy the story of some clandestine organization needing her, she abandoned us… so sue me if I wanted to find that piece of happiness that meant the world to me after years of drinking it away and one night stands.” Jarred finished with a look that seemed to almost dare anyone to challenge him on his choice. That stubborn defiant trait was one he shared with his father, as cold as the man had been he loved his son in his own way which often lead to a stand off when both put their foots down.
“Daddy,” Lizzie tugged at his shirt trying to get his attention on her after he had finished talking. Half the time she didn’t understand what adults were talking about but this time she did understand what her daddy seemed to be so angry about. Now she finally understood everything.
“Baby I am not saying I am not happy for you guys but you are my baby,” Samantha took a seat by her son on the couch. She laid a hand on his knee and angled so that he could look her in the face by turning his head. The conversation seemed to have gone off target from where she wanted it to go.
Samantha was not trying to break up Jarred and Kalani but maybe she was just trying to slow it down.
“Daddy I know how to fix it,” Lizzie yanked harder on his shirt. Interrupting wasn’t polite but if he was worried about Kalani running away she knew how to fix it.
“That’s great baby doll, you keep on yeah…” Jarred said trailing off.
“You know as well as I do that,” Samantha spoke yet Lizzie continued to insert herself into the very adult conversation she was having with her son.
“Your problem Daddy. I can fix it,” Lizzie pulled harder on his shirt so that Jarred would start to feel a tug at his neck with the fabric of the shirt. “You take her on a trip,” she talked over her grandma. Nana knew just about everything but right now she was not telling her daddy what you did after you got married.
“One moment baby doll.” Jarred said as he patted her on top of her head and pushed her ever so slightly away.
“Being a parent means you never stop being a parent. I love you. I will love anyone that you do but I don’t want you to get hurt again. It has nothing to do with Kalani. Just me making sure that,” Samantha talked over her granddaughter flooding her son with a two-front conversation.
“Daaaa dddddyyyyy,” Lizzie started to get the whine in her voice like all small children got from time to time.
Kalani Kane ensign
Jarred finally snapped over at looked at Lizzie as his eyes were wide and large. “What sugar pea?” Jarred said as his voice got a tiny bit too gruff as he felt his nerves on end. “What… baby.” he said a second time softer as he pulled her closer as he looked at her with a gentle caring look. He felt bad he snapped but he couldn’t help but feel his nerves getting over.
Elizabeth didn’t quite understand why her daddy and Nana seemed to be grumpy. She was so excited that her daddy was going to marry Kalani and she would have a real mommy for once like everyone else. Everyone loved Kalani and her Daddy together. Her Daddy and Kalani were always happy but this was not the first time the adults talked about Lily leaving right after they got married. “I know how to make sure Kalani will stay. You take her on a trip,” Lizzie said looking at him with a happy but serious expression. “That is why mommy isn’t here now. Instead of taking her on a trip she went back to work the next day. She left because you didn’t take her on the honeymoon trip. So if you take me and Kalani on the honeymoon trip, Kalani won’t leave and go on a trip for her job.” The answer seemed so simple to Lizzie. Looking up at Jarred she waited for him to get excited when he realized she solved the problem. “So can we go ask Kalani now if she will join our family?”
“Baby…” Jarred said as he paused looking at his daughter closely, she was so pure it sometimes melted his heart. “We will in time tell her… but we have to prepare. We can’t tell her till we have everyone here. You get to meet Kalani’s parents who… I guess will be your step grandparents…” Jarred said as the moment dawned on him about this statement. She was getting more than one new person in her life, she was getting a whole other new family.
Samantha tried to hide the look of shock on her face. It was hard, however. She had no idea the day was going to end up like this. Samantha was getting a wonderful new daughter in law but she was also getting a new mother in law to contend with. Lily’s parents never knew about Lizzie so Samantha never had to compete with anyone. Her heart shouldn’t race at the thought of Lizzie calling anyone else Nana yet it was. Today she was gaining so much but also losing things Samantha never planned on.
Lizzie got a wide-eyed expression and her mouth dropped open a bit as if she was having a hard time processing what Jarred was telling her. “We’re gonna need a bigger boat,” she said letting out a deep sigh. “Where are we gonna put all of them?” Her Nana and PaPa’s house was huge on the moon. It had room for her and her Nana and PaPa. It also has a room for Aunt Lucy and one for Uncle Peter when they stayed over plus the looking room that only guests used. Glancing at her current room she had no idea where her new grandparents would be. This also brought up the idea of what she called them. So many details. It explained why her dad at times just stared off at nothing rubbing his jaw or chin as he thought about a problem. If it helped him it might help her. Lizzie started rubbing her chin as she thought about all the answers she needed concerning her Dad and this wedding.
“They will stay in their own rooms love.” Jarred said softly as he smiled at his daughter as he pulled her up onto his lap. “I love you little one, don’t worry we will get it all taken care of. You… you are going to play the biggest part baby girl.” he said softly as he kissed the top of her head. He needed time to figure out their next steps but for now he knew at least the motions had begun. Looking over at his mom he didn’t know what she thought on this, she liked Kalani but he knew she wanted to protect him as well.
“Look, I know you are concerned… but I am not. I am happy… and that’s all I need from her.” Jarred said as he put down Lizzie as he walked over kissing the top of his moms head before moving over to the replicator to get a cup of coffee for the two of them.
She watched Jarred as he got them coffee and let her eyes drift around the room. This was not Jarred’s apartment anymore and not because toys were scattered about. There were throw pillows, candles, and pictures scattered all over the room. Men did not put these things up on their own. Men claimed they tolerated them because the woman wanted them around but after being married for as long as she had, Samantha knew men only kept things they liked. Kalani had moved into the family and Jarred’s heart long before this conversation. Samantha settled into the couch as Jarred walked back with the coffee. “So what do you need me to do,” she asked.
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