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Untangling a Marine

Posted on Friday 17 September 2021 @ 11:57 by Major David Scarlet & Lance Corporal Pearl Bijoux

Mission: A Cry from the Darkness
Location: The Round Table
1697 words - 3.4 OF Standard Post Measure

Her sparring session with Redragon, and the talk afterwards was decent. She found out a little bit about the 2nd LT. It also left her with a question or two. Maybe the Major could help her there. Or not, but she wouldn't know until she talked to him. She stopped some of the marines and asked, "Hey have you seen Major Scarlet?" if they knew, they could send her in that direction.

Scarlet, for his part had made his way to the Round Table lounge and was just sipping on a synthetic scotch. No one had bothered approaching his table as of yet and he appreciated that. He wanted to be alone with his thoughts.

The door opened to the Round Table lounge, Pearl stepped through. Her eyes widened seeing the place. She'd not been up here before and was amazed. She walked over towards the window that looked out into space, kneeling on the cushion of the window seat, like a kid would do and watched as the stars passed by. She caught the reflection of Scarlet in the window and turned around. There he was, and she moved from the seat and headed in his direction. She stopped near his table, and nervously cleared her throat. It looked like he had some stuff on his mind... Maybe she should just wait until later, but, she needed to find out information. "Sir, may I have a moment of your time? I am sorry to disturb you."

Scarlet sighed and put his drink down on the coaster. He didn't look at her, he didn't need too. The fact that she'd approached him at all meant something was bothering her. Ever since that first incident Princess had done her best to shape up and be a good marine.

"Sit." He said finally, not taking his eyes off his glass and only slightly readjusting his thoughts to pay attention.

She sat down across from Scarlet, Pearl fidgeting with her fingers under the table. Pearl decided she had better just dive right in. "I met the new 2nd Lieutenant, we sparred but, don't worry it wasn't anything bad. More about skill assessment. Anyway, we got to talking about our backgrounds, then before he left to get back to work he stated something to me. He said to me "You need to live life for yourself too" this was after he had asked me why I was in the marines, and I said for survival and to protect people." she raised her hands to the table, interlocking her fingers together.

"That comment just confused me. What did he mean by that statement, 'You need to live life for you too.' perhaps you can shed some light on that as I have no clue at all." Pearl giving a shrug and her brow furrowing.

Scarlet sighed and swirled the contents of his glass before replying. "You have to do things for yourself, or you risk losing yourself. Becoming nothing but a thing, a tool, or a weapon." He looked across the table at her and took another sip. "Or maybe he's telling you to be selfish."

"Basically learn to live, date, maybe find someone to have a family with that sort of thing, I guess? I think maybe I've been too selfish trying to prove a point or back then get myself killed. I don't know. I don't know the first thing about dating, how to make myself... pretty and act like the other women I've seen. I only can be me and, well try not to be a self serving princess who throws a fit." gives a shrug.

"Don't." Scarlet said firmly, putting his drink down. "Don't change yourself for others. That is just a fake mask. Don't change, grow."

He leaned back in his chair and sighed. "You'll figure yourself out. Don't force it and don't try to be someone you're not meant to be."

Pearl nodded solemnly, "Okay I can understand that one. Thanks, Major Scarlet." an expression of relief crossing her face. "I was worried I'd have to put all that war paint that other ladies seemed to think they need, to catch a man or something like that. I had one woman try to tell me that it was needed. And the ugh stink juice some of them had put on..." she stopped "Sorry I think I was interrupting you. Is everything okay?"

Scarlet was silent for a moment as he swirled the contents of his glass. "I'm fine." His words were hollow and his gaze distant. "You're dismissed."

Pearl raised an eyebrow at this. "Um... sir. You can throw me in the brig, but... I don't want to leave as of yet. You don't seem fine. I'm not a counselor, but I can tell something is bugging you. Then again...I could just leave..." she seemed torn at this point. Here she was just a mere LC but, after Scarlet's help early on Pearl wanted to return the favor.

Scarlet eyed Pearl over his glass before slowly lowering it to the table. "You want to play councilor, remuster to starfleet medical. In the meantime I'll say it again. I'm fine."

She swallowed down her frustration, Pearl was new at this and she wasn't going to jeopardize her new leaf turning. "Okay sir.. and I don't want to transfer to counseling. I was just... oh never mind, I don't know what I am doing anyway. I'll leave you to your thoughts." she looked around at the lounge "one other question, is it okay for me to be here? Or is this just for officers?"

Scarlet grinned. "To hell with the officers. You're a part of this crew like anyone else. Act like you belong and no one will question it."

He finished off his drink and motioned toward the bar. Two drinks. Scarlet looked at Pearl, studying her under his intense gaze. "Have a drink, Relax, and don't let anyone bother you. You're off duty and the only people who care about ranks off duty are pricks."

Pearl was shocked at the invite, this was rather unexpected then she smiled a brilliant smile. "Thanks Major." accepting the drink that came over to table. "I'll take what you said to heart. " actually letting herself relax and not be like a rabbit ready to bolt at the first sign of danger.

"Tell me, why the change?" He took up his drink as it arrived and took a sip. "All the piss and vinegar when you first arrived and now you seem afraid to offend anyone."

"Oh its still there." giving a slight smile. "However after our first meeting, and that last hellish mission we did, with the Captain being kidnapped. I just wanted to do some actual changing. You broke something in me. Something that needed to be broken." she played with the glass in her hands, rotating it around with it being on the table. "You gave me some hope, Major, I respect you and I would follow you into the jaws of hell okay? I know that may sound stupid." Pearl lifted her eyes from watching the rotation of her glass. "What the hell did you do to me, Major?"

"Just don't follow me blind. I need good Marines, not lemmings." Scarlet replied calmly, looking around the room at the other people sat down enjoying themselves. "I didn't do anything. Change, even just the desire to change, comes from inside."

Taking another swig of his drink, Scarlet then placed his elbows on the table and leaned in close. "It's my job to get you to your best and keep you there. So if that means I yell and push you past every limit you think you have, I'll do it. And sometimes, it'll be a casual drink."

Pearl nodded, as she listened to Scarlet's words feeling the skin on her arms prickle up. "Okay, thanks I appreciate this talk. I don't intend on being a lemming, not my style but I wasn't saying what I said just out of idle loyalty either. Its just that I guess, it was an expression of my trusting you. I never have said that to anyone before." Pearl let go of her glass to rub the back of her neck, hoping that her words weren't coming out stupidly.

Scarlet just stared at Pearl for a moment as his eyebrow raised in silent wonder and bewilderment. "Just shut up and drink before I make you do laps."

He took a sip from his own glass. "Come here with all that mushy stuff... at least the nickname fits. Princess." Scarlet glanced at Pearl over his glass. There was a knowing twinkle in his eye. He knew what she was saying. And he appreciated it. But he'd be damned if he'd say it back.

Pearl caught the twinkle in his eyes , moved her hand to her glass and raised it towards him in a silent salute, then remarked, "I've been finding a slipper or two in front of my locker, and also found a tiara under my pillow. And in making my bed, I found a pea under my mattress." she gave a small chuckle. "Guess someone is trying to find out if I am in truth a real princess."

Scarlet shrugged. "Own it." He looked across the table at her, breaking his gaze at the stars moving past. "Become a presence and force to be reckoned with." He grinned a bit to himself. "There are countless 'Princesses' in history who were great warriors. And anyone who attempted to use their title as an insult soon learned the truth of the matter."

"Indeed." Pearl breaking into a laugh "I will do so, sir. I look forward to becoming something like that." taking a drink from her glass. Scarlet's words seeming to have quite a bit of effect on Pearl, she not having a confused expression in her eyes. Instead there seemed to be more of a determination in them.


* Major David Scarlet
Marine Company Commander
USS Merlin

Lance Corporal Pearl Bijoux
USS Merlin


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