"Beauty and the Beasts"
[Previous post: "Something Blue"]

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Deck 26, Specialized Craft Storage Area
Stardate: 63073.1940

Doctor Summers and Ensign Lopez entered the spacious room to find several members of the senior staff already present; each dressed in accordance to their new Intel gathering persona.  Most had grouped to review and discus the mission as well as their respective clothing and disguise selection, a topic that Adriana had actually hoped to avoid altogether.  That hope was quickly shattered when Ensign Thomas noticed the two new arrivals.

"You look marvelous," the COO said in an admiring tone upon seeing the aCMO.  "Who's the groom or are you looking for someone to fill in that role?" Elliot playfully asked which prompted the Romulan looking woman by his side to launch a swift elbow to his ribs.

Adriana sighed deeply as she shot another glare in the direction of her superior.  "This was Doctor Summer's idea," Ensign Lopez explained somewhat reluctantly.  "It's a Kerelian betrothal dress."

"That would explain the numerous bracelets," Akira said with a grin, obviously aware of the specifics of this alien custom.  "You'd better hope that no one accepts the challenge or you might end up betrothed to a Gorn or maybe something even worse."

"I for one can't think of anything worst than a Gorn wanting to marry me," Adriana dryly chuckled not having found that possibility in the least appealing.

"Try imagining what the honeymoon would be like," Doctor Summers teased in a whispered voice to the aCMO which caused her to physically shutter.

"I can take down a Gorn," Hex who had been dressed in hunting attire said with a level of confidence that actually surprised everyone in the group.

"I believe it," Adriana grinned trying her best to ignore the CMO's last words.  "I was there when you knocked down Drell with a single bounce, all that while you were under the effects of a sedative."

"Whatever happens, Hex and I will be there to protect your honor and virtues," Elliot said before he was forced to dodge another swift elbow from Akira.  "And what are you supposed to be Doctor?" The COO promptly inquired in an attempt to divert the focus of their discussion onto another matter.

"That dress is of Rutian design is it not?  From the GIDDA outpost if I am correct." Mitshiba interrupted, the aCSciO having apparently already figured out the CMO's intended strategy for their Intel mission.  'The stitches along the neckline as well as the style of the shoulders are very specific."

"When did you become such an expert on alien fashion?" Adriana asked of her friend while the aCMO silently wished that she had been the one dressed as a Romulan instead of the aCSciO.

"Let's just say that fashion has been an interest of mine for a while," Aki vaguely explained having fallen into what the aCMO believed to have been the comfort zone of her role.

"GIDDA?  Wasn't that outpost destroyed?" Elliot asked, the name having sounded oddly familiar.  "I seem torecall that name having been mentioned in one of my Academy classes."

"Almost entirely whipped out by a mutated strain of plasma plague," the aCMO clarified still feeling a little strange standing next to Doctor Summers while she wore that dress, even if it had been a replica.

"This is going to be a mission for the books," the COO laughed.  "A Kzinti huntress, a possible Romulan Tal Shiar agent, a Kerelian beauty and an infected Rutian exile; that trade center is never going to be the same again."

"Let's just hope that one of us will be able to get the Intel we need," Adriana said in a solemn tone, "Because in the end it won't matter much who we are or who we pretended to be."

Marissa Montonera-Lombardi (mmlm24@gmail.com)

Ensign Adriana Lopez
Assistant Chief Medical Officer