She looked at the coffee table and ran her hands through her hair. How did you talk to someone who loved a person who didn’t exist? It’s not like they wrote a how to book on the subject.
Leaving would crush the young man, so that option went out the window. Could he accept someone who was radically different from whom he loved? He would have to, because it wasn’t like either of them had a choice.
“Bridge, this is the Captain. Open a secure line to Intelligence Headquarters’ medical wing,”
“Yes, Ma’am,” Mara said.
A holographic image of the medical department formed in the air above the desk and a doctor stepped into view.
“Commander Almir,” the Doctor said, “Marcus has been asking about you.”
“Is he awake?”
“The duty nurse just woke him up,” she said. “It’s two in the morning here.”
“I’m sorry, Doctor, I forgot the time. Things work differently on a starship.”
“Oh, I know,” The doctor said. “Here he is,”
The doctor stepped aside and a brown haired and blue eyed young man smiled at her. Wow, he’s good looking! I like Almir’s taste in men. A soft chuckle escaped her lips as she thought back about a marine she’d spent a weekend with on leave during the war.
“Kate!” He beamed. “How are you? I like your hair!”
“I’m, um, fine. Uh…It’s been busy.”
“Did they tell you someone nailed me?”
“Yeah I heard…are you okay?”
“The Doc’s patched me up pretty good. I should be out of here in a couple of days. Personally, I can’t wait to get away from the sawbones.”
Talia smiled weakly. “Are you going to be safe until we get back?”
“They’ve moved all my belongings onto campus,” he said.
“Good, that’ll be a relief,”
“You ain’t just whistlin’ Dixie,”
She sighed softly and looked at the young man on the screen and regretted the conversation to come. The time to tell him the truth was at hand, and things were going to get very uncomfortable.
His tone turned softer, almost as if he were sharing a secret. “Kate, I need to ask you a question.”
“People are whispering when around me, but I’m hearing things.”
“What are they saying?”
“The rumors say you’re an alien of some sort,”
That was fast.
She rubbed her forehead. “I don’t know a better way to say this, Marcus. The answer is yes. My name is Talia De’Zahna, I’ve lived twelve lifetimes and am a twenty thousand years old.”
“Cool! So I didn’t hear things wrong then.”
“It doesn’t bother you that I’m an alien?”
“How do you want me to act? Of course it does. What happened to Kate?”
“Kate was a false persona,” she said, “one put in place to keep my sisters and me safe.”
“You’ve already met them,”
“You mean Lisa, Jennifer and Brittany?”
“This is a lot to take in,”
“Try getting your life back all at once,” Talia said. “I felt like a starship ran me over.”
“How can you be twenty thousand years old? Kate was only nineteen.”
“It’ll take too long to explain,” she said. “When this mission is over, we can sit down and talk.”
“Is that a promise?”
“I’m a warrior, Marcus; it’s very dishonorable to lie.”
“I’m holding you to it,”
“Stay safe, ok?”
“Talia,” his tone turned slightly darker. “Do you have the same feelings for me that Kate did?”
“At this point, no,” she said sadly. “But I’m not giving you the ‘Dear Marcus’ treatment either. We’ll just have to approach the future together and see what happens.”
“That’s more than I expected,”
“I expected to be dumped,”
“It means you break up with me,”
“Ah, end the relationship,”
“Why would I? You’re the innocent party here, and I don’t want to hurt you.”
“That’s kind for a warrior,” he shrugged. “I kind of expected ruthlessness,”
“When you’ve lived as long as I have and watched your race die,” she said softly. “Your outlook changes,”
Marcus was silent.
“I have to go, Marcus.”
“You do what you have to. I’ll be here,”
“I’ll see you then,”
She killed the connection and then leaned back before letting out a long, slow sigh of relief. Good, that was done and settled for a while. Now, she could focus on the job at hand without any distractions.
The muscles in her back started to cramp, so Talia stretched like a cat as she walked over to the minibar. After seeing what happened to the Bavarian crew, some bourbon definitely was in order. How could someone do that to their own people?
Sometimes mankind was even more childlike then originally thought. She expected that from pirates, who had no compunctions about murdering people, but soldiers? What happened while they slept? Did concepts such as honor and commitment go by the wayside?
The door chimed and she looked up from her drink before sighing. What time was it? Oh, three in the morning, so whoever dropped by wasn’t there to chit chat. And she was willing to be she knew who it was.
Methos walked in and Talia chuckled humorlessly before shaking her head. Sometimes the three of them were so predictable. While it was nice to have sisters, they could also be annoying as hell. Sometimes they just didn’t understand the concept of ‘alone time,’
“I know you need to talk, so don’t try to hide from us.”
She sipped at the bourbon. “What makes you think I want to talk?”
“We all know you need to.” Methos shrugged. “And since I’m not intimidated of you, I got delegated.”
Talia snorted. “Nice to know I need to be hoisted off on someone.”
“Cut the shit, sis, and start to act like someone who’s got some sense.”
“I’m tee totally pissed right now,”
“See? Now how hard was that to admit?”
“So not funny,”
“Not trying to be,”
“Then why do you three think I need someone to talk to?”
“Because of how you reacted with Reyes,” Methos said. “What would you have done if I wasn’t there? Kill him?”
“I may have,” she said softly.
Methos poured herself a drink and then shook her head. “And you think that’ll change the past?”