Previous Next

Honor, Love & Cherish

Posted on Thu Nov 9th, 2023 @ 6:02pm by Captain Samuel Woolheater & Consul Andrinn Orin

Mission: Season 6: Episode 4: Memory Lane
Location: HOLLERDECK ONE - Mount Shasta, a cabin in the woods
Timeline: MD3 - Downtime
3959 words - 7.9 OF Standard Post Measure


The holodeck scene was perfect as Samuel remembered it. It was a comfortable and roomy cabin on the slopes of Mount Shasta in California. It was snowing outside. The snow frosted the glass of the window. Outside, the afternoon sun was clouded over. The branches of the conifir trees, the pines and the ridgleine were all heavy laden with snow. The snowflakes were large and thick. But inside it was toasty warm and comfortable. The pine interior was soft and a warm kind of yellow. The oak flooring was soild. Here and there, adorned rugs that were soft and plushy. The fireplace crackled with a low fire that had been burning about two hours. The couches were comfortable with pillows and a few blankets. The sconces on the walls gave the room a delightful glow. The kind of glow that was warm and inviting and that was filled with nothing but happy memories.

On the wall that the piano faced, there is a painting. Samuel's mother collected art. This was their cabin on Earth. A kind of vacation cabin. Sam's parents felt that their children should know about the world they came from. The painting though was Fontalan, it was a like an Arcadian painting, lush meadows and ancient ruins. But it had these silver deer in them. That made the whole painting idyllic. The piano belonged to George, Samuel's father. George wanted his kids to be artisans, diplomats and peacemakers.

Definitely not marines. And definitely not marine snipers. Andrinn would have made George much prouder. Andrinn would be the son George had always wanted.

Andrinn sat at the grand concert piano. A great ebony black Steinway & Sons piano. The great big bay window that looked out into their backyard opened out onto a modest deck. Later on, they would have guests over.

But right now, Sam sat behind Andrinn on the piano bench. He held him in such a tender, loving embrace. His arms wrapped around Andrinn's torso so tenderly. Sam's muscled arms shown through the long sleeved thermal underwear shirt he was wearing. He rested his head against Andrinn's back. Andrinn was playing some music that Sam absolutely adored. Sam sat there with his arms around Andrinn, his head resting on his back, his eyes closed. His short, dirty-blond hair looking messy. His scruffy five o'clock growth showing.

Andrinn was playing a selection from Les Boreades by Rameau and Sam loved it. This was the third time through. He begged him to play it just one more time. Each time, Sam would quietly hum along on his favorite parts.
His baritone voice buzzing on Andrinn's back. And when Andrinn reached the final set of delicate arpeggios, which Sam always hummed along too, this time he added words, "I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you, O sweetness, Andrinn Orin!"

The music ended as Sam heard the last chord. It hung there, shimmering and radiating the sound for a moment and then slowly faded. Sam squeezed Andrinn lovingly and smiled.

"Thank you Andy!" Sam said as he opened his eyes and rested his head against Andrinns. He hugged him more and kissed his head. Sam, looking over Andrinn's shoulder put his right hand forth to touch the keyboard. His bicep and forearm muscles were that of a marine sniper, not a pianist. "Show me how to play that last part?" He kissed him on his cheek and nibbled on his ear.

Andrinn loved how sweet and adorable that Sam was being in that moment. It was one of the first times that Sam and Andrinn had truly a few moments to themselves for almost a full year by that point, let alone any moments to just savor in. Andrinn gently pulled Sam's hands into his own, Andrinn's on top, and began to show Sam how that last part was supposed to go and be played on the piano.

Andrinn gently guided Sam's hands across the keyboard and let his mind drift away for a moment. He was thinking back to the time before, when he first met Sam and how stupid that he was all that time ago. Andrinn was glad that Sam didn't knock some sense into then and glad that he had Sam in his life now. Opening his eyes, Andrinn leaned over and kissed Sam's check back and whispered, "Now, that's how you play that part."

Sam nuzzelled him and returned his kisses. He couldn't play it as well, not even half as good. He sighed, but he felt Andrinn's hands on his and he didn't feel stupid. He knew deep down that his ability to play or not to play the piano didn't matter. Sam didn't have to be good at this; Andrinn accepted him as he was. And Sam knew that he was accepted. He looked at Andrinn now and just smiled and looked away before he felt to dopey.

It felt so good to be loved. And he didn't look at Andrinn but he kept on smiling to himself. To have someone looking out for you and to watch out, to look after someone else. Some...angel...that saw you "warts and all" and still found something there under the marine armor and the military discipline worth liking and loving. All he could do was just smile back and shake his head and then bury it in Andrinn's shoulder, "I love you too man."

Andrinn just laid his head down atop of Sam's and just...did nothing for once. He was glad, again to be back onboard the Elysium and have a bit of time to just relax for once. The fact that Sam still couldn't play the piano just made Andrinn chuckle before kissing Sam on the cheek. "God, I love you more than you can ever know! I'm glad that you were able to get us some holodeck time together, even if it's only for a little bit," Andrinn said, getting up from the piano to make something more to drink for the pair.

"Mmmm...I love you too. Holodecks aren't ready for primetime yet; running just a single holodeck is about all that the imaging processors can handle. So, this is kind of a test. It may be that holodeck time will either be rationed or it will become a thing of the past." Sam swivelled on the bench and watched Andrinn walk away to the wet bar. "Well, at least until we get back...if we get back." He next turned his head to look out of the "window" and took in a deep breath and let go of more stress. He got up from the bench and walked over to the bar and then behind Andrinn and wrapped his arms around him. "Where do you learn to play the piano? I mean, with what host?"

Andrinn felt Sam put his arms around him and heard Sam ask the question about the host that made him want to play the piano. Andrinn had to think about it for a moment before he replied, "First one, actually. Well, that one and me. I played a few instruments through school myself, but not the piano. Once I joined, I had a knack for it. I loved it ever since. I'm just glad that we get to play it together."

He laughed, "Play it together? Is that what you're calling what I did?" he laughed again and massaged Andy's shoulders and neck. "I didn't know that Andrinn was musical. Orinn has been around so long...longer that Andrinn. Truth is, you both are capable of living for such a long time.

"The Orin symbiant was only around for two hosts before me. I've been around for quite some time, but if I wasn't a long lived person, I'm sure that Orin would be on host number five or six by now, at the very least! I don't even know," Andrinn replied, wondering what life would have been if he didn't join with Orin or didn't have such an incredibly long life within himself.

"So, you have something similar to a piano keyboard on Trill? Or did you pick it up when you were on Earth? Because, you're so natural at it" Sam complimented him with a squeeze.

Orin waved his hand in the so-so way before he replied back to Sam. Orin replied back, "We have something on Trill that's similar, but it was more synth than anything else. As for the talent, it was just something that I picked up over the last few decades. You'd be surprised how much it helped with diplomatic talks!"

Sam teased, "Yeah? Well. I once picked up a rash just as easily too!" He pretended to be offended but his gringave him straightaway.

Orin teased right back when he replied, "Yeah, I remember that one. You wore your armor way too long down there on the planet and got one of the biggest rashes that I had ever seen in my entire lifetimes!" Orin reached over and kissed Sam on the cheek before going back to play some more music for the both of them.

Sam finished the drinks that Andrinn had started making. He set Andrinn's near the piano but not in danger of getting spilled. And then he sat down on the bench beside him and watched him play.

"Sam....I'm afraid that we may never get back in time. I know that I'm longer lived, but a lot of the crew isn't. I'm....actually a little bit scared of what might happen over the next few weeks and months. Do you think we'll get home before too long?" Andrinn asked as he stopped playing for a moment to look over at Sam.

Sam listened to him play and sipped his drink. Hearing the question caused him to look at Andrinn a moment. He took a beat to process the question and what was being said. What was being asked; both what was mentioned and what was left unsaid. He took another sip of his scotch and then gently set the tumbler down on the side table closest to him.

"Back in time? You're worried about not only the journey ahead of us but the time it will take? And that might be a very long time. I understand. I...believe...that there is a way to get us home just as quick that got us here. If it happened on accident then, if we're smart enough, we can figure out how to do it again on purpose. I believe that we have smart people on this ship who will figure that out. I believe that Commodore and the XO are doing and will do...everything...that they know how to do to get us all home again. And I believe that day will come wshen we're home again. You will outlive me...Andy. I wish it weren't so. I wish that I wouldn't be...that I wouldn't have to be a burden to you when I get old and poop out. You will outlive a lot of your friends and people that you honor, those that you love and cherish. So...let me reframe your question?

Am I afraid of dying out here? 'Out here' where I only know my shipmates and the stars are all unfamiliar to me? Hell. Yeah...a little. Because, I don't want to die obscurity. Where nobody even knows I'm gone.! I wish you could have been there with me when I first scouted popsicle one. One of the days, second day...I travelled for hours in the barren waste. There were times that if I didn't have the Elysium GPS to tell me where I was I thought I was lost. But then, eventually, there were, on the horizon and getting bigger all the time, these huge water spout plumes. They rose from the surface and went up a few kilometers into the air! One of the most amazing things I ever did see. And at the bottom, near where the water was being drawn up? There were these, strange, new creatures. Like giant walrus I guess. They were loving there under the plumes and I almost missed them. I made it a point to at least get wet with the water."

"It's just crazy about the things that you might think about when you're truly out there in deep space, alone with a ship full of your shipmates. Makes you wonder about other things too. Good things, of course," Andrinn replied back, just letting Sam and him linger in the moment.

"Yeah..." Sam put his hands on Andrinn's and then held them in his as he looked at him, helping him turn and sit face to face on the piano bench. "Do you know what a miracle you are? That any of us are? The galaxy is filled with life. Life is everywhere. And we're a part of it man. Instead of being afraid to die; choose to have lived a good life. Live the best life you can while you have the time, while you are here."

Sam reached out and tenderly caressed Andrinn's face with his right hand. He said from his heart, with tenderness and love, "Andrinn, I would not wish any companion in the world but you. Thee will I love, and with thee lead my life. For as long, or as short as we have together."

"As long as you're here with me, I don't care if we're here together for a minute or for a century. It'll be the best time in the entire world and I'm glad that we met onboard. You've been a blessing," Andrinn said before kissing Sam gently. After the kiss, Andrinn just laid his head against Sam's for a moment to feel just the warmth of the fire hit them and warm them up, especially after all that everyone onboard had gone through on that ice planet.

Sam thought about popping the question now. He thought to himself, "Now, its time. This is the moment. I'll ask him now if he'll marry me. I mean if he would consider being my partner." And as he struggled with his feelings and the thoughts of what he would say; he couldn't bring himself to ask him. Afterall, what right did he have to ruin the life of Andrin? Besides, what was he thinking? Sam was just a dumb guy. He had a terrible kind of a job; marine sniper. He'd never be home. He'd never be able to truly express feelings and reciprocate love. Sam closed his eyes; feelings got in the way. So much.

"Andrinn?" he said.

Andrinn lifted his head head off of Sam's and whispered, "Yeah, Sam? Everything okay?"

Sam looked at Andrinn and then away at the piano. The feelings were overwhelming. He furtively looked again at Andrinn, "Andy...I..." and again he couldn't say what was in his heart. He was irritated at himself but he felt his face get hot. "Andrinn..." he said again. And he was reminded the terrible price that military spouses pay. The sometimes lonly nights, the long deployments in the field, the danger and the not knowing. How could he be so selfish. And knowing that death was a real part of his job. And knowing that even if by some miracle Sam survived being a marine, he would die of old age before Andrinn. Could he really put someone else through that?

"...ahhh...I..." he said and looked down. He struggled, "...I...ummm...". Sam looked at Andrinn once more and thought it best to think it through when he wasn't so flustered.

And then, not wishing the moment to pass; nor waiting another minute or hour he said to Andrinn, "...I want to be with you. Be more than we are right now. This is hard because...guys like me; we don't deserve to be with guys like you. Y' know what I do. What my job is. You know...and still you can stand to be with me. I'm trying not to be selfish...and I been thinking about this a lot lately. And hearing you talk tonight about how long it might take little time we might have together. Just 'cause of life and the work we do. Andy...I want you in my life more. I love you. And...I know I've no right to ask you."

Sam took one of Andrinn's hands in his and squeezed gently and asked, "But...would you...could partner...for life? Marry me? Andy...marry me...and let's be together?"

Andrinn jumped into Sam's lap and gave him all sorts of cute little kisses. Gently shaking his head, Andrinn simply replied, "Yes. I'd marry you a million times over and I wouldn't for a second regret it. You wanna know why? Cause I knew from the moment that I saw you that there was something special about you. You're never selfish and I love that about you. Lets get married."

He was so surprised and happy that Andrinn said "yes" and he returned the kisses. It was then that he realized that he had noting to give Andrinn to mark the engagement.

Andrinn just gave Sam a few more kisses and just took the few moments together, as he knew that he didn't deserve someone like Sam. Andrinn didn't deserve Sam, but he was glad that Sam was in his life.

"I'll have to figure what to get you for an engagement gift. I can't really wear a ring. How about a necklace?"

"You guys have to wear your dog tags, right? Well, we'll have to make something up to wear along with those, if that's possible. However, I can wear a ring. So, we'll have to go down to the promenade to see if there's anything we can't figure out, Mr. Orin," Andrinn teased before relaxing into Sam's lap and kissing him softly once more.

Woolheater grinned playfully and unbuttoned the top of his uniform collar and retrieved his chain that held his Starfleet Marine Identification (SMID) for short. Essentially the 24th century version of the dog tags that Andrinn was referencing. He removed the chain from his neck and over his head and offered it to Andrinn. "For now, how's this?" and then placed it over Andrinn's head and gently onto his neck. "Looks better on you" he said and then kissed Andrinn.

Andrinn gently kissed Sam back and whispered, "I absolutely love this and I love us. But, I've got something for you too."

"Oh?", he said happily surprised.

Andrinn got up and ran over to one of the intables within the holographic recreation of Sam's family's place. There was an interface on the top of it, allowing for Andrinn to input some commands into it. Once he was done, Andrinn opened up the intable and pulled out something, keeping it out of the view of Sam for the moment. Walking back over to Sam and keeping his hands behind his back, Andrinn told Sam to keep his eyes closed.

He just smiled and grinned, "What are you doing? How did you squirrel something away?"

Walking behind Sam and wrapping his arms around Sam's shoulder, Andrinn put his diplomatic tags from back in his academy days around Sam's neck. Once it was on Sam's neck, Andrinn whispered, "Open your eyes and take a look. It was my old Starfleet tags from the 23rd century. I've got updated ones that I have imbedded sub-dermally, so I don't need to wear my old ones any longer. Keep it on and I'll be able to find you anywhere within 100 light years. They wanted to keep us diplomats safe and sound."

He held what Andrinn placed around his neck in his hands and looked it over all the while saying, "It's amazing Andrinn! Oh, thank you. I'm glad that they had this kind of tech so long ago. Thank you bud. I'll wear it always close to my heart." He turned and faced Andrinn, "I feel giddy. Light headed? It's a weird and wonderful feeling. So...what is our next step?"

Hanging onto Sam tightly, Andrinn thought about it for a moment before replying, "I guess we have to announce it to the crew and see about getting someone to help us get married. The Commodore or Captain would be candidates for it because they're master and commanders of this vessel. I'm sure others could do it, especially within the Diplomatic and JAG corp. Just depends on what your thoughts are?"

He thought about it and generally disliked all that attention. Sam looked out the holographic window for a moment and then back at Andrinn. He smiled very coy and said, "You and I communicate pretty darn well. I love that about us. My Dad can speak five languages; he just has the mind for it. But, it seems that he never learned how to communicate with Mom. He never learned how to speak Emma" he smiled broadly and laughed. "It's very tonal language."

"Sounds like you had quite an interesting family, even if you had to learn how to communicate effectively with one another," Andrinn said with a smile.

Sam grinned back and nodded, "Oh hell yeah, we lerarned how to understand 'mom' real quick." He shared some more, "When we were kids, we lived in this house that had two levels. Upstairs and a downstairs. And when we were little, my parents used those gate guards? You know? That go on the bottom of the stairs?" Here he paused and got the sly grin on his face.

Andrinn just grinned as he replied, "Well, if they're anything like the guards that we had on Trill back in the 21st century, they must've been an interesting bunch."

He laughed, "Not persons silly. The grate thingy's...did you know that you had to also put gates at the top of the stairs? If you don't, the bottom stairs just become a strainer." He said proudly delivering the punchline. It was his way of relieving the tension.

Andrinn just shook his head as he laughed, listening to everything that Sam was talking about. This goofiness was part of the reason why Andrinn loved Sam as much as he did.

"Well...I don't want to make....what I mean Andy is...I don't know. I get stupid feelings and then I can't think. Like, all the thoughts in my head go right out my ears. Its like somebody shakes and wipes my etch-a-sketch." He sighed at his inability to process what he was feeling and said, "What do you want? You pick?"

"Well, how about the Commodore or Captain? We can ask both of them and it would have to be a bit after we learn more about all these nightmares that we've had going around the ship, as well as once we get through whatever territory that we're going through. We can ask them together sometime and see what they have to ask," Orin replied, kissing Sam gently before laying his head on Sam's shoulder.

He kissed Andrinn's head and stroked his back and just enjoyed being with him. There was a lot to think about, a lot to do. "Thank you bud. I'm glad you are here. I'm glad you are in my life."

"I just want to be with you and I can't wait for the day that we get to be married," Orin whispered, happy for the days and weeks to come.


Consul Andrinn Orin


Captain Samuel Woolheater


Previous Next


Comments (1)

By Lieutenant JG Miraj Derani on Sat Nov 11th, 2023 @ 8:29am


OMG, this soo cute. You two are so sweet, I ship you so hard. You've been such a lovely romance to watch, evolving so naturally, not a gallop to a gold band in as little time as possible. It made it feel so real and genuine.

Looking forward to seeing what sort of stag dos you can manage 13MLY from home :)