Something in Common
Casperia Prime - A lesson in relaxation
Location: Counsellor's Office
Having been reading through crew files Alicia had come across something interesting in Gallia Norris' personnel file from her time at the Academy. She was considering calling Gallia for a Counselling session just to see how she was coping with Starship life, but she didn't want to make her feel picked out. Instead she made her way to Gallia's quarters to see her. Arriving at the door she pressed the chime and waited.
Gallia, Tayalas in her arms, walked over and opened the door, "Oh, good evenin', Miss. Can I help ye?"
Alicia smiled as the door opened. "Hi, I'm Alicia Kelea the new Chief Counsellor. I was just reading through your file and I see we have something in common. May we talk?"
"Oh, aye, sure. Me fiance is warkin' late, so I've got all kindsa time." Gallia replied, "Jus' lemme put this one in her playpen. Tayalas, say hello to Miss Kelea."
Tayalas waved and cooed, "Sana!" at the pretty lady with hair like her other mommy's, she always loved meeting new friends.
"That's kinda her go to word, it's a lot like aloha, it means many things." Gallia laughed, then boasted, "But mah garl, she's jus' turnt one, got herself a vocab-luree of over farty words she does."
"Wow! That's quite something to be proud of at her age." Alicia smiled warmly. She couldn't help but feel her loss more keenly, but she continued to smile nonetheless. "I was reading your file and I see that you once cut off all your hair?" Alicia looked at Gallia curiously.
"Aye, an' thot's been specalated on goin' near far years now." Gallia laughed, "Mah thard yare at Academy, right after me mum an' dad died..." Great, she thought, another one wondering if I'm stable enough for duty.
Alicia offered an understanding smile. "To be honest I did the same thing myself!" Her smile faded just a little. "I told people my hair was falling out but in all honesty I cut it because I...couldn't cope."
"Right." Gallia nodded, "Besides, mum always lookt after mah hair when it was long, without 'er, I jus' didnae wanna be bothered with it."
Alicia nodded. "I can understand that. Have you settled in well since your arrival here?"
"Oh, aye, we've been here right at a year." Gallia smiled, "Elysium's become home for Tayalas an' me."
"Ome!" Tayalas chimed in.
"So, I gotta know, was mah grief stricken makeover that fascinatin' or is there mar te come?" Gallia asked, this whole thing did seem a little odd still.
"Don't worry I'm not here with any pre-planned motives, I've not long arrived here myself and as strange as it sounds it's nice to have something in common with someone." She offered a smile.
"Wanna hare somthin' foony then?" Gallia laughed, "There's days when I wanna do it again so bad, just te have one less thing te deal with in the mornin', ye know? Especially since takin' over Ops, Anje didnae gimme the full view a whot a nuthoose this department can be. It's temptin, ye know, gettin' back five are ten minutes te meself."
Alicia nodded. "As long as it's not a compulsion to want to hurt yourself then the decision on that one is yours!" She grinned. "I like the way I look now and I have a man who means everything to me. The chance to start again is something I'm not giving up on, I lost my baby and I have a chance to start anew with my life. You are indeed fortunate to have your child."
"How much do ye know about the carcumstances of mah chlid?" Gallia asked, curious to know what all this counselor knew about her, "Ah mane, if ye took that kinda interest."
"To be honest I'm not an a-typical Counsellor who goes by everything a personnel file says. To answer your question...she's your niece, you took responsibility for raising her which is a very commendable thing to do. She's a very lucky little girl."
"Shay never got te be mah niece in ray-altee though." Gallia sighed, "Mah sister didnae make it mar than a few minutes after we delivered the wee angel. Lana, she got te hold her far a minute as she lay there passin' got te hold 'er baby an' kiss her, tell her she loved her one time, then Ah became a mum..."
Gallia paused, getting two glasses and a bottle of Scotch, pouring them both two fingers, "Now, now the bastard what kilt mah sister is gonna get way with it, an' on toppa that, his bastard family's trying' ta take mah daughter, all I got left a' Lana." She slugged down her drink, "Ye know, Ah never hated nobody befar, no til Ah met them damned Cardilles..."
"I'm sorry to hear that. Have you tried consulting with Starfleet's legal department to help you?" Alicia looked concerned. "If you need a specialist opinion I'd be only too happy to provide a statement on your behalf. After all you're the only mother that your little girl has ever known."
"Ah've got a lawyer, a bonnie one." Gallia said, "Though, I willnae lie te ye, Ah've thought aboot jus' askin' Rico Cardille if he'd sign away his rights to Tayalas if I didnae pursue the murder charge no mar."
"That could be exactly what they want you to do" Alicia paused. "But the decision is ultimately yours. Should you decide to do such a thing I would make sure you have a binding agreement drawn up by your lawyer. I would give it very careful consideration first."
"As much as Ah hate that bastard, Ah'd be willin' te let 'im go an' hope Karma had somethin' awaitin' him warse than mah bullets te keep mah family together." Gallia sighed, "Is it bad that I just admitted I want to kill him?"
Alicia smiled and shook her head. “Given the circumstances, not at all...as long as you don’t actually go and do it of course!” She looked more serious. “So if you decide to do that, there won’t be any going back. He’d be free, could you face that?”
"Aye." Gallia nodded, "I couldnae protect mah sister, an' most likely I willnae get any real measure of justice 'gainst the Cardilles, but I can still protect her only child from 'em, I can live with knowin' he'll no answer for his crimes that way."
Alicia nodded. "Well if you need any moral support just let me know okay?" She smiled warmly. "I'll do all I can to help you. In my opinion your niece needs to be with you, you've raised her."
"I dinnae have a niece, Alicia, tha's mah daughter." Gallia corrected sweetly,"Ah maht no be the mum she deserved, but Ah'm the one she's got. I wish Lana coulda been here far her, she'd a' been much better far Tay, better than me at ev'rythin' she was, but she couldnae, so A'll do mah best."
"That's all you can do" Alicia smiled warmly. "From what I can see, you're doing a wonderful job too."
"Would ye like te meet her official like?" Gallia offered, she would be able to tell more about this woman by Tayalas' reaction, that kid could spot a bad egg from five kilometers.
Alicia nodded. "I'd love to! Provided I won't be disturbing her of course."
"No at all." Gallia laughed, walking to the playpen and picking up Tayalas, "She loves meetin' new people. Wouldnae miss it far all the cookies in the mess hall." She reached over and placed Tay in Alicia's arms, "Tay, meet Alicia."
Tayalas looked the new woman over, exploring the strange spots on her face with her antennae, they weren't chocky chips, but they were pretty and she smelled good. She raised her hand to touch the new woman's face, smiled, and said, "Sana."
"Well, ye passed the most impartant test ye'll face in this hoose." Gallia laughed, "Nobody gets invited back withoot passin' the And-ar-yen sniff test. Shay likes ye, good enough far the rest a us."
Alicia smiled the biggest smile yet as she looked at Tayalas. "I'm glad you like me! I'm honoured." She looked at Gallia. "I will do everything in my power to help you and your daughter."
"Ne'er thought ye wouldnae." Gallia smiled as she watched Alicia with Tayalas, the clouds lifting from her heart for a moment.