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Meals make it all better

Posted on Thu Mar 14th, 2024 @ 4:47am by Captain Rhenora Kaylen & Lieutenant Commander Bonnie "Bon-Bon" Durnell & Remal Kajun

Mission: The Beginning of the End
Location: Bajor

Smells began to waft from the kitchen, a delicious combination of fresh and hearty ingredients that promised to make the taste buds tingle at the mere thought of what the meal may encompass.

"My goodness, what is that you're cooking?" Rhenora couldn't help but ask as the scent of the impending dinner made her mouth water.

Remal, towel over his shoulder, stood dicing some fresh vegetables before adding them into a pot. "Oh, uh, just a bit of Ratamba stew for dinner. Picked up some fresh veg at the town market on arrival. There is a side of shrimp if you want some protein, oh, and some sweet Mapa bread as a side dish." He uncovered the pot and steam rolled out along with a torrent of smell.

"I thought about picking up some Pooncheen and making mixed drinks tomorrow, if you're interested and the doc says it's okay." Remal gave her a look like 'are you okay to get a buzz on?' with a devilish grin before giving the stew a spin.

"It's a little late to be asking that" Rhenora laughed with a shrug, "but the hypo every morning contains something that neutralizes the nasties, as well as provides daily nutrition supplements" She resisted the urge to waddle into the kitchen to dip a finger I to the pot.

Turning her attention to Jenna "So, a few days to a week on Bajor, what are you going to do with yourself? Of course, you're more than welcome to crash here and sleep the entire time if that floats your boat. Certainly floats mine at the moment" she yawned for emphasis.

"I'd like that, at least for tonight, would hate to intrude on your alone time or anything. Maybe tomorrow, I could take a run into town, see the sights. Then maybe I could familiarize myself with the crew manifest or something boring like that." Jenna commented as her stomach let out a growl, a result of smelling a freshly cooked meal.

"I heard that." Remal bellowed with a deep laugh. "It will be ready soon, be patient." He shot her a smile as he placed the lid back on the pot.

A short time later the three of them were seated around a rustic dining table made from salvaged timber from their first cabin. Rough-hewn as its original state was made it a feature in the almost completely rebuilt cottage. Scorch marks told of its history and was an ever-present reminder of what had transpired.

Rhenora poured the wine and settled into one of the comfortable chairs, labeling out some fresh salad from the garden onto the three plates.

Jenna waited her turn, "So who tends your garden when you're away?" She asked continuing the small talk which was more important in her mind for catching up than she wanted to admit to herself.

"We have a small group of people who tend the gardens and maintain the house when we're away. A trusted local firm provides the staff. They're doing a marvelous job so far, don't you think" The Captain smiled as she settled down at the table and allowed Remal to serve the main meal. "The flowers look amazing"

As he ladled stew into bowls around the table he grimaced. Always one to be particular about the cabin and the grounds that surrounded it, he had a thing or to to complain about. "I suppose." He offered before elaborating. "They've dug into spots that weren't a part of the original plan without asking first."

"Really? I hadn't noticed" Rhenora replied honestly, looking through the window as though she could see the spot in the dark. "have you noticed anything else amiss?"

He placed the bread basket upon the table and sat down. "Not really. But you know how particular I am about certain things. I was devastated when the Rhenora's burned. It looks they might at least recover." He looked slightly solemn as he took the bread, ripped a piece off and dipped it in the stew before eating his first bit.

Jenna took a sip of her stew and her eyes lit up, "This is good." She said before adding, "And what I saw on the walk up was beautiful. Really well done."

Rhenora was hungry, seemingly perpetually so these days. She hoovered her stew and bread, demolished the side salad and headed back to the kitchen for seconds. "Remal should take all the credit, he's the one with the grand plan and overall vision for the cottage. I fear I'm nothing more than a couch potato when I'm here" she laughed as she settled back at the table and took a hearty drink.

Remal stopped eating and gave her a hard look, "Now that's not entirely fair, nor is it true." Then he continued to stir his stew. "Maybe with the first cabin, but since we've started rebuilding you've been right beside me the whole way." He sort of pointed at her whith his knuckles, "without her planning and support, her input and general ideas none of this would have been the way it is."

He let the thought of her involvement hang for a moment before he added, "The flowers and garden however," he smiled proudly like a child who had just won a contest, "That's all me."

Jenna looked between the two of them for a moment, not knowing whether to crack up laughing or not. The blank look on her face held there until she saw Rhen's face crack a smile.

"Indeed it is all you. Besides I couldn't reach the ground and get back up again now even if I tried to." Rhenora laughed then looked at Jenna. "I trust you'll be my picker upper of things for the next few months until I can reach my toes again?" The second serving of stew was rapidly diminishing until finally she slowed. Patting her belly "Thank you Remal, that indeed was delicious"

Remal was resting his lower face behind his two large hands which were propped up by his elbows resting upon the table. He gave a curt nod in Rhen's direction, his belly full, his eyes glazed over. It would be a few minutes before he would be ready to get up and begin the cleanup.

Jenna had eaten her fill, which wasn't much, but enough. These days it seemed smaller portions more frequently was what worked best. "Yes, thank you, it was delicious and..." she started to stand, "I will gladly be here to be your picker upper of all things." She showed her desire to help by picking up her dishes and walking them over to the kitchen area. "I'll start by helping do your dishes so you can relax."

This perked up Remal, "Hey, careful now, pampering her is my job." He chuckled.

"Shall I leave you too to fight it out?" Kaylen laughed as she rose and headed into the kitchen, filling the sink with warm soapy water to rinse the dishes. They had chosen a rustic lifestyle in the cabin, with only a few modern conveniences.

The atmosphere inside the cabin for the rest of the evening was best described as comfortable with a dash of jovial. Conversation was light, while company hung heavy like a familiar blanket. Outside the cabin, in the distance over the lake, a late Autumn squall was developing. It was a good evening with good company and that was before Remal broke out the Pooncheen.



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