1138: Mission Improbable

by TC Blane and Zanh Liis
Following A Proposition Part Two

-=Ready Room, USS Serendipity=-

"Computer," the Captain said, "Locate Keiran O'Sullivan."

In the split second it took the computer to respond, Liis' mind flashed back to another time when she'd asked it the same question: the night after Keiran's miraculous return to his proper place in the timeline.

He'd come looking for her that evening and found her on the holodeck. After he'd softly spoken her name they'd said nothing more to each other; only danced slowly, without music until both were so tired they sank to the holographic earth of Cork and fell asleep. Artificial Perseids were still streaking above in bright blue swaths when they'd awoken hours later and had to part, to face their duties before they could really talk and begin to work things out.

How far they had come since that night, and how much, she felt, she had to pay him back for.

She'd developed a long and complicated list of things to do to that purpose. She'd jot ideas down as they came to her, sometimes stopping in the middle of other thoughts to save them for later. Often, she'd even think them up in the middle of the night and have to write them quickly down, lest she forget.

There were so many ways she wanted to show Keiran just how much he meant to her and finally, the time had come for one of those ideas she'd been saving to be crossed off her list.

^Keiran O'Sullivan is not aboard the Serendipity,^ the computer replied.

"Excellent," Liis smirked, then grinned, tapping her fingers together in anticipation. She knew where he was headed this day, he'd be busy for a good long while.

She strode forward to open the door and leaned out. "Thomas, a word?" she called, and TC Blane spun slowly in the command chair.

He glanced down at his captain, who, in this moment was quite a comical sight. Only her head was visible, and from the mischievous look in her eye, he knew that she was up to something that was likely going to involve him taking a field trip.

"Of course, Captain." He rose and nodded to Reece.

"Yeah, yeah, I know. Mind the store," Reece said, looking up from the PADD he held in which he was making plans for the New Years Eve party to end all holiday parties, to take place on the Holodeck. "Maybe THIS time I'll win the cup..." he muttered, as he continued reviewing the menu.

The instant that the door closed behind TC, Liis spoke. "What do you know about Christmas trees, Thomas?"

TC blinked, taken off guard by the question. “Well, they are green, smell like pine, and are not generally considered a tactical threat. Why?”

“I need one for my house. A big one.”

Blane's eyebrow elevated, but in such a small increment that no one but Zanh Liis would have noticed.

"How big?"

"Big. Huge. Like, big enough to block out the sun but still fit inside my living room at the house in Cork."

“Ahhh, so your talking like the Griswold family Christmas tree size.” He saw by the Captain’s look she had no clue what he was talking about.

"Griswold? Did they serve with you on your last assignment?"

"No, I... never mind." TC took a breath. "What about ornaments? Have you thought this through? Or am I going to also have to procure the tinsel?"

"Of course I thought this through." Liis picked up a PADD and turned it around to face him. "Mary Clare has a bunch of O'Sullivan family ornaments she's leaving in the trunk in my study for me to use. We'll replicate some new ones too. Then the rest we'll do up in lights. I'm thinking, pure white twinkling ones. Like this." She scrolled down and tapped at another picture to illustrate.

TC's mouth hung open a minute.

"What?" Liis asked, thinking he disapproved of the picture.

"Did you just use the word "twinkling"?"

"Are you sure you want to ask the question?"

Blane opened his mouth again, and stopped. He cleared his throat slightly and finally looked at the picture she was displaying. "This...is a big idea. I'm going to need a little help."

"Sure." Liis moved to the replicator, ordered a cup of coffee and then smiled at him anew as she lifted it to her lips. "Take Dane and Landry with you."

“Really? You sure we don’t have a couple of trained apes that I could use?” He joked.

"Apes we'd have to feed. Dee and Dum can just skip lunch."

“I take no responsibility for any property damage.”

"Just keep Dane off the furniture. You'll be fine."

“When do you need this festive conifer by?” he asked.

"Well, it is the twenty-fourth. Christmas Eve? So...let's say I want it set up and strung with lights by 5pm tonight. The ornaments I'll do myself when I get there."

TC's posture changed. Somehow, he'd forgotten the date. He had not, however, forgotten the time. "It's already fourteen hundred, Captain..."

Liis smiled at him brightly, no idea the miracle she was asking. "Still hours to go...shouldn't be too hard, right?"

*Find a Christmas tree, a big one, on Christmas Eve. Sure, piece of cake.* TC thought.

He smiled. “I’ve had more difficult problems in my lifetime.”

"Yes and I have been the cause of many of them." Liis nodded and clapped a hand against his back. "I have faith in you, Commander. Assemble your team...add a couple more people, if you want. Just remember who we're doing this for. Remember, this isn't my holiday but it is his, and it's important to him. Let's surprise him in a good way for once."

TC nodded. “Will do. Now if you’ll excuse me Captain I have a tree to find.”

He turned on his heel and headed out of the ready room. He tapped his badge as he took all three steps up in one leap and proceeded directly to the lift. “Steele and Cristiane report to transporter room two as soon as possible.” As the doors closed, he added an order that also served as a warning. "Dress warm."


Commander TC Blane
Chief Operations Officer
USS Serendipity NCC-2012


-=/\=- Zanh Liis O’Sullivan
Commanding Officer
USS Serendipity NCC-2012