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So You Found Me

Posted on Fri Mar 12th, 2021 @ 6:45pm by Lieutenant JG Aurelia Garrett & Lieutenant Chase Thatch

Mission: Side Posts
Location: Deep Space 12- Crew Gym

The wooden pole sliced threw the open air, singing as Aurelia brought the pole down for a strike. She had been in the gym for almost two hours now, running through exercises she had learned during her time spent in Thailand training with warriors and temple monks. The excessive energy she held needed a high intensity outlet, one her time in Thailand helped her find. The first work out she had enjoyed was muay tai but she quickly transitioned into fighting with a staff. She enjoyed wielding a weapon other then her fists.

Garrett was alone in the gym, most of the lighting off aside from the platform she now moved around. The floor a soft material with a bit of a bounce to it. She was barefoot, in high waisted leggings, a sports bra and dripping with sweat. Her breathing was ragged but she still had restless energy to dispatch. A thick scar of raised discolored tissue could be seen extending from her upper right rib cage around to her lower back as she twisted and twirled spinning the staff through the air striking imaginary targets.

Thatch used the towel around his neck and wiped his brow as I walked into the gym. He had to do a double take and the sight in front of him. Usually no one was around here this time of night. He usually came her to blow off any frustration from the day, and was definitely not expecting this as he was currently not wearing a shirt as he usually would during day hours.

He went to turn and leave, seeing her swing the stick that he did not exactly want to interrupt her. However, he needed the relief, plus she did look...rather enticing to talk with in different ways. He knocked in the wall to get her attention. "Well hey again darling, can I come in or am I gonna get hit with that stick?" He chuckled as he set his bag down next to the door.

Shock colored Aurelia's face as she spun to face the man who had spoken to her. Her chest was rising and falling quickly, her breathing ragged. She tried to fill her lungs with enough air to respond but failed. She hadn’t realized how hard she was pushing herself until she stopped. She probably would have kept going until she collapsed. She nodded fiercely as a response instead.

Strands of sweat soaked hair that had escaped her tight ponytail stuck to the sides of her face. Rubbing her forehead against her upper arm did nothing to relieve her of the dampness, her whole body was soaked. Hopping down off the platform she made her way to a bench that hosted her gym equipment. Picking up a towel she started wiping away the perspiration.

“Hi.” She was able to get the word out between gasps of air.

He chuckled and walked over to her. Completely forgetting his lack of clothes compared. "Hi yourself. I usually come down here to get some alone time after all the work during the day to kinda blow off stress. Which judging by your lack of breath and looking like you just stepped out a shower, I'm guessing is the case with you too?" He said with his classic smile and accent to back it up. He had found the place after his first day and came by every night since. He figured maybe they just came in differing times and just so happened to cross paths. He took a seat and tapped the space next to him "Cmon, sit, you'll run out of air if you don't and I do not think you want me to carry you to a doc shirtless and you wet after a second date. People might think I'm some sorta player. " He flirted giving a sly wink as he reached down into his own bag and got a jug of water, offering it to her. "Hydrate, looks like you need the extra water too." He may not have been a medical staff, but he knew enough advanced first aid to tell she was a bit more than exhausted.

Was this guy serious? He must not know who she was, carry HER? If she wasn't dying to catch her breath she would have mouthed off a smart ass retort. His lack of a shirt had her eyes wondering until she realized she was pleasantly pleased with the view and mentally cursed herself for getting distracted. Huffing a laugh she shook her head no to the offer then bent over to pull her own water jug from her bag holding it up to show him before guzzling a good eight ounces before setting it back down. Still trying to catch her breath she crossed her arms behind her head to help open up her lungs to let the air in. The sweat still slid its way down her bare stomach, the low lighting of the gym making it glisten as the drops traveled over her scarred skin. To her relief it was remarkably easier to catch her breath in this position, but she held it regardless for a few more moments.

"Computer, restore lights to full." She commanded, The encounter was starting to feel too intimate. With in seconds the entire gym was illuminated with artificial lighting.

He nodded, as he put the jug back. He stood and stretched his arms, walking over to the mat she was originally on. "I didn't know you liked to fight Aurelia." He smiled leaving his shoes on the side before stepping on the mat and feeling the springs as he bounced on his feet. For being such a big man, a sense of that old child like happiness seemed to emanate from him. He stretched his arms across, the muscles in his back and arms being shown off now that he was facing away. He was by no means a body builder but more of the military bread CrossFit muscle structure.

He sat down, still facing away to give her some level of privacy as he closed his eyes. After all, he came here to get away from all the mess for a few hours after work, which if she wanted the same he did not wanna intrude but he seemed very open to her company, which was unusual for him. Anytime before their meeting he would have just came back later or not at all, but something drew him to attract her more to him. He was enjoying this little game and finding to tables to be ever shifting between them. It was definitely a new experience that he welcomed.

"So he does know my name." She spoke out loud, a cocky half grin on her face. His identity was still a mystery, it had been a few days since their last meeting and she hadn't seen him at all. Nor had she sought him out, she left it to fate, and fate saw to it they would run into each other again.

After using her towel to dry the majority of the sweat she tossed it atop her bag and made her way to the mat again. As she approached she looked him over with unguarded eyes, she would never admit how enjoyable she found his physique or lack of clothing, so as she got closer her face shifted into a neutral expression, keeping her eyes only on his face. Each step she took towards him mimicked the prowess of a lion approaching its prey. She sat down crossed legged about a foot in front of him. "Its been awhile since I've had a decent sparring partner." She said as nonchalantly and provoking as she could.

He opened an eye, noticing that she sat rather close than he expected, completely disseminating his prior thought that she wanted some privacy. He smiled and gave a shrug. "Well, I don't think I'm nearly as good as you are, and I'm not sure how much I like the idea of getting hit in the head with a stick." He nodded over to what she was swinging. "However, I need to get some anger out too, so ill bite. Just don't expect much." He stood back up, offering his hand to her. "Just crotch shots. The last time a girl asked me to do this, I could not walk straight for a couple days and that was a very awkward med bay visit."

Aurelia took his hand and hoisted herself to her feet. "Your so talkative." she teased with a laugh. "Also I won't be using the staff, seems an unfair advantage." She shrugged, separating her feet and crouching into a fighting stance. Aurelia liked provoking those who were much bigger than her, it was a thrill, though most opponents highly underestimated her and she came out on top thanks to sheer ignorance. Thatch stood more than a foot taller than her, which should have intimated her, but didn't. With that shit-eating grin of hers she beckoned him with just her pointer finger.

Thatch, having trained himself in the arts, much to the surprise of most, he did not underestimate her at all. Her size gave her the advantage in speed on foot, but for his length in arms, he had the advantage in almost everything else. Chase thought to himself, he saw her stance and was able to pick it out pretty easily. He took is own stance, shifting his one foot back, his left-hand in front of him about halfway, his other drawn back. That southern gentleman smile was replaced by one of calm concentration. He saw her gesture, but remained still, not giving in to her taunting to get closer.

"What's wrong Cowboy? Scared?" Her grin spread wider.

He smiled back at her. "It is never wise for one to rush an opponent without knowing their skills darlin" He remained where he was. Scared was not the correct phrasing, more like warry. Even still his skills were in self-defense or for more silent approaches, not straight on the head to head. At least what he was working with right now was not.

Dropping the grin Aurelia spun thrusting her right arm out to jab Thatch in the ribcage. She knew she didn't have a chance hitting him much higher unless she propelled herself off something. He caught her fist causing her to giggle a little menacingly. She retracted her fist spinning again but this time crouching down to sweep her leg out and knock him to the ground. The move worked, Thatch fell hard, the mat absorbing most of the impact. She quickly sat on his chest pressing her forearm into his throat, bringing her face mere inches from his she huffed a small taunting laugh, "Its like you didnt even try, Darlin."

He smiled at her, not exactly being able to laugh back himself. He reached under her arm, using his forearm across her chest to push, his other arm her thigh and using his core strength to push himself up, without much of a hassle but still a hearty effort. The force shoved her to her back as he swiftly pinned both her arms above her head crossed over one another so his one hand could hold them in place, his hips between hers as his mass itself held the rest of her body to the ground. It was a more bodyweight-driven move but it did allow him to keep her still and if she was able to get free, he hand a free hand. Her cockiness left her open, though he did not exactly protest to her being so close to him, and now it was the reverse, and with his bodyweight holding her down along with his sheer arm strength, unless there was someone coming to save her, she was stuck where she was. "Maybe I wasn't yet, though I did not mind where ya put me" he gave a sly wink as he made sure he had her pinned, where the worst she could do right now was wiggle her legs around. "was not a bad choice of moves sweetheart, you want me to let you up or waste energy trying to get up."

Aurelia's eyes darkened, green whirlpools of fury. She wiggled at first, looking up at both arms that were pinned at the wrist, she hated that her wrists were so small he could easily hold both of hers with one, her mind raced shifting through her options of escape. When her body shuttered from the pure pleasure of being pinned she growled, exposing her teeth a bit. Her bodies reaction came as a surprise. She wondered if others felt how she felt when he winked at her, Aurelia wasn't preyed upon, she was the predator.

She held his gaze, staring into his hazel eyes, softening her features. The tension in her body loosened almost like she was seconds from giving in. The snarl smoothed into a smile, she could tell it was working, that he was readying to lower his guard. Until suddenly Aurelia brought her knee up, slamming it into his side with enough force to knock the wind out of him. She used his thigh to propel herself up, his grip on her wrists not weaning, until she wasn't underneath him any longer. Rolling quickly to the left until he lost his grip putting her on the other side of the mat.

"I'll give you that one."

He gripped his side and smiled as he stood back up. He loved how much spirit the girl had, it drew him to her even more. Her outward appearance seemed very crude, but on the inside, he could tell something was different, and that that made him even more interested to keep adding the tension. He gave her a respectful bow. "I'm guessing you were probably trained more than I was. Then again I think your beauty just comes naturally." He flirted as he put his hand on his head to try and catch the breath her knee knocked out. He was not as out of breath as she was when he first found her but it was close enough.

"Perhaps, or maybe your just too distracted by my 'beauty'." She said with an exaggerated eye roll. Something kept her from asking his name, like it was too early to solve the mystery, that she enjoyed not knowing a damn thing about this tower of a man who stood in front of her. Other then she liked the view of that tower... especially without a shirt... or that she enjoyed how her body had reacted differently when he pinned her down. How odd it was, for a girl who took pride in knowing everyone, who befriended everyone, to keep this man at a distance. He was nice to look at, he had a certain 'southern' charm that kept her smiling, so what had her holding back? It was mere coincidence they ended up in the same place...alone...again. Who was she kidding, he knew her name, so it was evident he looked her up, or asked someone who she was. Plus the computer could have told him her location. She knew she was speculating.

She sighed realizing her mind had rambled itself into frustration. Her lips parted to speak but she stopped herself. Her heart told her to walk away, but her head kept her feet planted where they were.

After catching his breath and putting his arms down he looked at her, she seemed, entranced. "You also seem quite distracted. Is everything ok." That gentle giant side seemed to come out again as he walked to her slowly, step by step. His bandaged hands seeming to sting a bit as he reached out to her, making him recoil it back to himself making him suck air through his teeth but not enough for her to hear. His eyes remained locked on hers. He knew that she was more of the self-sufficient type, the same as he was. She felt like she didn't need help from him but he wanted to at least offer it since he was starting to He mentally stopped himself to keep focused.

"I'm always okay." Her mouth was was dry so her voice came out rough but she braved a smile tilting her head a bit. The bandages caught her attention. "Should I perhaps be the one to take you to sick bay?" She gestured towards his wrapped hands.

He smiled as he looked at them. "Nah, I actually already went." He said as he gave a sigh. He could tell he had something on her mind but also given what he has learned from her personality so far, talking about internal affairs was not a strong suit for either of them. He got back to a separate stance, this one more defensive than before. He gave her an understanding smile, trying to give her an outlet the best way he knew how. He wanted to be closer to her, for some reason he felt a welling in his heart. "Cmon, go again." He said, sounding a little more strict but still in the flirty tone.

Her face fell slightly, contemplating his invitation. There was a pull, drawing her towards him, one she couldn't deny or ignore. There wasn't any harm in a friendly spar, right? Given her bodies reaction to his there definitely was, she'd never been so turned on by someone overpowering her. Pinning her down.

She closed her eyes to push away the thoughts that were starting to cloud her mind. She pushed her current notions about this cowboy to the back of her brain. Calming the blood roaring through her veins. Inhaling a deep breath she opened her eyes again, nothing but determination could be seen on her face as she walked a bit closer and slipped into a fighting stance, mirroring his.

He watched her copy his stance and adjusted accordingly, he rushed her to give a sporting chance since she did their last bout, and sure enough had her dodge it and give a swift kick to the back his leg as he passed her, causing him to catch himself. This is you don't rush but it was a spar. He watched her closely, judging her movement now that he was on the defensive.

Every jab, hook, and swing she took at him was deflected. She moved at a bit slower this round , not wanting to wind up over powered again. Only a few punches made contact with intended targets on his body, but never enough to harm him severely. She sent her fist directly towards his nose and he caught it last minute. His hand engulfed hers, more then twice the size of hers. She spent more time then she should have admiring the way his large hand wrapped around hers, not realizing she had dropped her guard. Her mind shifted to imagining that hand on other parts of her body, how his rough hands would feel against her soft skin.

In her daze he used his long legs and leg locked her, making her fall on her back again. This time he used one hand each on her wrist, pinning them again on either side of her, keeping his leg locked with hers to keep them at bay, making their zero way of wiggling out like last time. "Ha! No way out this time kitten!" He laughed in a dumb cartoon evil laugh as he breathed for air, his bare skin pressed to hers and his face inches away from hers, a slight blush came across he cheeks as he smiled down at her.

Aurelia couldn’t help but laugh at him, at her own dumb mistake, at the silly nicknames he kept calling her, and that ridiculous laugh from him she hadn’t expected. It was a full hearted laugh, almost bringing her to tears. When had the last time been that she laughed so freely?

When the bliss of the moment passed her eyes locked on his. His body was warm, but not suffocating, she could feel his breath on her cheek, gliding against her neck. When she spoke her voice was quiet and soft. “Are you going to let me go Cowboy or hold me here all night?” She teased.

His grip loosened but he didn't let go. Something about this moment, this closeness was one of the happiest moments he had had since back then. He didn't want to let go and loose it. "Maybe I want to hold you all night..." He said softly, his smile softer, his face flushed a little at his own statement, but genuine. His hazel eyes locked on hers as his breath still rolled down in heavy pants as he held her there.

At first she was sure his words were part of her imagination, maybe she hit her head when she landed, but his eyes held his intent and she felt the sincerity in his voice. Without breaking eye contact she slipped her hands from his when he loosened his grip, the same time gently untangling her legs from his. Her hand went to his chest and she slowly pushed him off, his skin felt hot under her palm, her fingers ached to explore the heat of him. The movements were slow, Aurelia fought against them but knew she had to. Something in her didn't want to rush things, something about him made her want more then one night but the other part of her had a wall up, pushing him away, not letting him through.

The moments passed in slow motion, seconds that felt like hours. When she was no longer under him she replied, "It's late and I have an early duty shift tomorrow." Her eyes went to her gym bag, then back to Thatch. She wanted to stay, to test her resolve, but she also wanted to run and not look back.

He didn't understand. He seemed so sure that maybe they had something, in fact he still was. HE sat on his knees and looked at her. Maybe he made her feel uncomfortable. "Chase.." He said softly. If she wanted to leave he did not want to stop her but, he wanted her to stay there, with him. He wanted to help her like she helped him without even knowing.

At first she was puzzled, was he going to chase her? Was this a game of his? Then it dawned on her that he had been answering her unspoken question and she smiled while replying equally as soft, "Lia." Since she had joined Starfleet she had only given the nickname to a handful of friends, even more rare now, most opted to address her as Garrett, but she didn't want him to address her so formally, she wanted to hear her name in that southern accent of his.

He smiled. "Lia.." He said, with that happy southern charm of his, as if reading her mind. He cleared his throat as he stood, offering his hand again like he did at the start. "Well Lia...this was nice. I'm usually here the same time every night if you a sparring partner more often." He said softly. He wanted to see her again. He wanted to see her every day so he could show her what she had been missing all this time and so she could show him the same.

Hearing him talk, say her name, made her body feel hot all over. She accepted his hand to stand and slowly pulled her hand from his, regretting it the moment her hand was free. "I feel I have to warn you, I was pretty exhausted tonight, I doubt you'll be able to pin me again." Her feline smile returned to her lips and she shrugged with that cocky attitude of hers. "But I wont stop you from trying." She stepped down from the mat and walked towards her bag collecting her belongings. Turning back toward him she said, "Goodnight Chase." with a smile as she left the gym.

He smiled. "We will see about that." He chuckled to himself. "Night Lia." he said as he gave a small wave as she walked out of the room. When the door closed he gave a sigh. It was bitter-sweet to see her go, but he knew they would see each other again, and that, made him happy.


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