Posted Jan. 24, 2023, 3:31 p.m. by Civilian Jal'na Sherko of House Noggra (Head of Physical Therapy - Sacred Heart Hospital) (Jennifer Ward)
Posted by Civilian Urg’tohn, Son of the House of Duroc (Klingon Warrior) in tangqa’ Tavern by the main square (Tag Urg’tohn)
Posted by Civilian Jal’na Sherko of House Noggra (Head of Physical Therapy - Sacred Heart Hospital) in tangqa’ Tavern by the main square (Tag Urg’tohn)
Posted by Civilian Urg’tohn, Son of the House of Duroc (Klingon Warrior) in tangqa’ Tavern by the main square (Tag Urg’tohn)
Posted by… suppressed (13) by the Post Ghost! 👻
Jal’na did not wear an excessive amount of leather like most Klingons. That was for armor, mostly, and she was no warrior. For her work she gravitated to the heavy, almost canvas like, materials. Outside of work she preferred the flowing billowy accent garments most Klingon clothing was known for. Jal’na did not primp for dates. She still wore the high collared burgundy dress with grey accents that she had worn out with Sharah to the embassy. It complimented her bronzed skin. From long habit her long espresso colored hair stayed braided. The only addition was a long sleeveless coat with a broach marking her as a member of House Noggra.
Ay 2000 hours exactly, Jal’na entered tangqa’ Tavern and scanned the area she could see and then looked at the woman by the door. “I am meeting, Lord Duroc.”
The woman nodded and said “Second floor. Stairs to the left of the bar.” and gestured vaguely into the establishment.
A set of huge, iron-studded doors offered refuge from the bustle of the square. Beyond them, the main room ceiling was masked by a holographic night sky, an artificial breeze stirring imitation palms that grew in clusters from ancient stone walls. More firelight provided illumination, larger torches on the walls complimented by more intimate lanterns on each of the long, oaken tables.
In the center of the room, rising up from an artificial sea, was a bar in the shape of a longship. For those well-versed in Federation rumour, it might recall stories from the USS Viking. But with that ship now disappeared, who could say whether this bar and that were one and the same? Still, it was sturdy and it was well-stocked, with a vast array of beers, wines and liquors from the four corners of the quadrant. Perhaps even beyond.
At the end of the bar, a single door stood open to a flight of stairs.
Urg, Lord Duroc
(Description of tavern courtesy of Sharon Miller:
Jal’na moved past the woman and into the main part of the establishment and looked around curiously, but didn’t pause in her stride across the room and through the door. She mounted the stairs with the ease of an athlete, and where others might balk at meeting with Lord Duroc and the rumors that surrounded him, Jal’na had no such trepidation. She was curious. Stepping onto the second floor, her eyes again scanned the space looking for the man she was there to see.
The room was three walls and a balcony overlooking the central area below. A large table, long enough for at least a dozen, sat in the middle of the room. But I stead of being full, there were only two place settings laid out. One at the far end on the left, and the other on the right. The seat at the left was occupied by the massive bulk of Lord Duroc, who stood when Jal’na entered. He was cleaner than when she saw him last, and the armor he had worn had been changed to a leather and canvas suit… of sorts. His beard and hair were clean and oiled, and the braid down his back was impeccable. He was still unnerving in his appearance and not what any Klinhon woman would describe as conventionally handsome… but there was an air about him that far overshadowed the standards of what was considered good-looking. And that ‘aura’ was something few other Klingon males could begin to compete with.
As she entered, he smiled and said “Welcome Jal’na of House Noggra. I hope you do not mind, but I told my guards to wait elsewhere. I thought privacy would be in order.” He didn’t pull out her chair or offer any kind of greeting… but he did wait for her to be seated before he took his own seat; a gesture unlike a Klingon and unheard of as a House Lord.
Urg, Son of the Builder
She raised her chin slightly, “Lord Duroc.” Jal’na stood by the chair for a pause. It had been many many years since she had been home, but one did not forget etiquette. It only took a breath of a moment to realize he was waiting for her to sit, and so she did. It was unusual, but Jal’na had already figured out that Lord Duroc was unique. “I do not mind your guards, they are simply doing their duty. It does not bother me for them to be absent either.” At this point, Jal’na noticed the absence of guards more than she noticed their presence. Between the security wing, General Harris’ PT, and Dasca’s dual teams, Jal’na thought she saw more guards than she did patients recently.
Urg poured two goblets of blood wine, hers first, and then raised his drink. “To your health. May your life be long, your enemies numerous, and your death glorious.”
“May your deeds be sung in Sto-vo-kor.” Jal’na raised her glass taking a strong pull. Ah it had been a long time since she had shared blood wine. Most of the medical staff did not have the constitution for it.
He took a drink, but his eyes didn’t leave hers. Het set the drink down and said “I have taken the liberty of having a meal prepared. This place has a substantial menu. I didn’t know if your preferred traditional Klingon fare, so I made inquiries. Your favorite food is something called ‘pesto chicken’? I requested it as well. But if there is anything you want, just ask.”
Jal’na nodded, he liked to control all things. “The hospital chef makes a very strong pesto that makes the dead bird not so unpalatable. I do miss quality Klingon food. I anticipate whatever you have requested.” Jal’na regarded him, undaunted by his unwavering stare. “You maintain impressive grounds. I believe Dr. Fayth will be a frequent visitor. She was quite taken with it.”
Urg waved off the mention of the Doctor and he said “I am much more interested in if you will visiting. And if you plan to, I wish you know if you will be coming to see me.” His little brother Q’ragh (also the oldest) often quoted a human bard from long ago: Faint heart never conquered the fair maiden and made her punch you in the face to bring your blood to a boil before breaking the bed upon which legions of offspring would be concieved.… or something like that.
Jal’na inhaled deeply, sniffing, and sipped her bloodwine. “Your garden is a refreshing reminder of Q’onoS. If you become the reason for my visit, will depend on tonight, but it is in your favor that I am here,” and gave a predatory smile. Jal’na found him quite attractive, and his conversation earlier in the day enlightening, but she was not the type to rush into anything.
“It favors both of us.” Urg said. “You are something… unique… I think. That deserves to be treated accordingly. And I will be the one to do so.” he said, his eyes locked on hers. “And I know that after tonight, you will be coming to see me.” and he smiled. “Because you would not be here now if you were not as curious about me as I am about you.”
Jal’na felt a thrill go through her and her nosyrils flared. She had forgotten how direct Klingon males were. Another reason she dated very little, other males were too indecisive. “I am quite curious, Lord Duroc. You are quite different than any warrior I have ever met.” Her finger laced at the tips over her abdomen as she leaned back slightly and met his gaze. “But will you come to see me after tonight?”
Urg’s gaze never faltered. “Of course. You haunt my dreams now. Why would I not?” It wasn’t flattery or poetic license. He was stating a fact. “I foresee many such visits in our futures. And many more evenings. This ‘first date’ is simply the first step on a road we both will travel. Of that I have no doubt.”
To Jal’na it sounded like Lors Duroc had spent a great deal of time around humans and picked up some of their colloquialisms. She did not doubt he meant what he said. It only confirmed to her what she had concluded from their earlier conversation and observations: that he spent time with and respected those of all walks of life. “Then, let us see where this first step leads us.”
“You mean you don’t know?” he asked with a sly grin as he took a drink.
Oh yes Jal’na knew. She knew where he expected it to lead. But she would not dishonor herself or her family by rushing headlong into acrions simply because the man was intriguing and the physical representation of a perfect warrior. But her smile was warm by Klingon standards, others might think she was contemplating where to put the knife. “No plan of action makes it past the first encounter. One must be flexible and understand the reality of destination may be quite different than imagined.”
At that moment three servers arrived. One carried two large plates of roasted gT’kur, a Kl8ngin dish of very spicy roasted meat on skewers. The second brought two plates of chicken pesto whose stomach, oddly enough, complimented the skewers quite well. And the last brought a patently pungent smelling dish of some kind of fish. Urg’s eyes lit up and he said “EXCELLENT. You did have it.” as the set it down, the servers eyes watering from the smell. Urg looked at Jal’na and said “Surströmming. Its a Terran dish from long ago. It was a dish for an order of great warriors called ‘Vikings’. In reading the histories of them, they would have made fine additions to House Duroc. I have one of their decendents in my personal guard. Good man, loyal and brave.”
Jal’na turned as the servers arrived with the food. The fish she was quite curious about. She was sure the other medical staff would find it pungent and off putting, she found it mouth watering. Her gaze returned to his as he spoke again. “Great warriors come from all over. Humans have a great penchant for peace, but their history is decorated by great societies of warriors. The Mongols, the indigenous people of the American continents, the Spartan warriors.” Jal’na leaned toward the dish, “We will get a chance to see on a greatee scale these Viking warriors quite soon. However, most certainly these Vikings had proper taste in food.”
The fish came with two-tined forks, and Urg lifted one and stabbed a piece of the fish and held it out to Jal’na. “You would do me great honor by sampling first.”
Jal’na took the fork from his hand with a small incline of her head, “I am honored to do so.” He was a strange man for a House Lord, except for one actively wooing a mate. The idea thrilled Jal’na, but when she took a mate it would be for more than physical attraction. And of course that was why she was here, to know more about him. She sampled the scent and then took the piece into her mouth. It tasted strongly of fish and…fermentation with hint of salt. Jal’na had found that even among humans that enjoyed fermented drinks, such foods were not widely enjoyed. “Soj ‘eyqu’!” Jal’na nodded appreciatively. “This is a fine dish.”
He took the other fork and pierced a piece and lifted it to his mouth and inhaled the aroma (odor?) before taking it in his mouth. His eyes closed and he said “That is one of the best tastes in the galaxy.” He opened his eyes as he chewed and watched Jal’na for a moment. “You know I did not mean that I knew this evening would lead you to my bed, correct? I know where this is leading because the Builder has shown me. I would not dishonor you or your House by bedding you so soon.”
Jal’na lifted her bloodwine to her lips, “I do know, Lord Duroc,” and she drank before continuing. “I know you very little, but what I have observed shows a man deeply concerned with those in his care, even those outside of his immediate influence. A man with a mind for detail and planning. A man that is relentless in attaining his goal, but is not afraid of a long journey to ensure he can keep it. Only a fool would not use those same qualities in the pursuit of his mate. You do not strike me as a fool.” Jal’na met his gaze with open admiration. “But it is obvious that the idea of me in your bed would be a welcome eventuality.”
She set her glass down, “Nor would I attempt to entice you to my bed. I am from an insignificant family in a minor but Noble House. I would not bring shame on my mate or house by someone later challenging my honor claiming I was after his wealth or power. I have no interest in such things.”
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