Getting to Know You - Part 1

OOC: Joint Post between Winters & Esimed
Takes place 3 hours prior to landing on Ezra

It was early, ship time that was. There wasn’t exactly a sun to really give a sense of day or night. Just an alarm and clock that told you when you were supposed to be awake or asleep. Either way, Vas had gotten into a habit of showering early mostly because he wasn’t keen on the idea of flashing gang tats and war wounds in front of the crew. So one could imagine the young punk's dismay when the gorram shower curtains were all missing! The last bastion of privacy this boat offered!

So now the hawked delinquent was going through the storage bins trying to find them or maybe something else that was waterproof he could jerry-rig into a shower curtain. So far all he found was a lot of junk; a surprising amount of junk! The cargo bay really needed a serious going over!

Vas huffed, putting one box away and went to pop open another. “Gotta be here somewhere; it’s a gorram ship. Couldn't have gone far,” He grumbled, rummaging through the box. Vas just couldn’t wrap his noggin around why someone would make off with shower curtains!

Jacy had in fact disposed of the shower curtains. As in they were completely gone; thrown into the jettison tube and shot out into space. How the Captain had let those incubators of germ and mold escape even his notice was beyond Jacy. And her first attempt at team building had failed due to the poorly timed arrival of Dillon’s personal family doctor, so perhaps the communal showers would now be a place of eye-opening kinship. Still, it would be best, for now at least, not to tell the crew that she was the responsible party behind the curtain caper.

S he’d tried to do her morning meditation and poses in the shuttle she was assigned to, but it was so crowded with debri posing as old cargo that she felt claustrophobic. She’d carried a few of the lighter boxes to the cargo hold then stolen a few minutes for herself. When Vas came into the Cargo hold huffing and puffing with his towel and pamper kit in tow, Jacy knew her few moments of privacy were at an end. But she didn’t mind the idea of sharing her private moments with Vas.

When she came out from the corner where she’d obscured herself she must have startled Vas because his eyes were large as saucers and the lid dropped from his hands. It was also possible he was unprepared for Jacy to still be in her sleepwear. She hadn’t started this morning with the intent of relocating boxes or leaving the shuttle so she hadn’t planned or dressed accordingly. And it was quite cold in the cargo hold.

“Good morning, Sugar bear!” Jacy held her arms out wide, the universal sign to bring it in for a hug.

“Mornin’.” Vas blinked. “Aren’t you up early.” He observed and cracked a smile; usually this early it was just him ghosting the ship. “I reek, dunno if you wanna get that close.” Vas warned in advance just in case she wanted to rescind that invitation before he put an arm around her and inadvertently KO’ed the girl. “Oh! And someone has gone up and taken down the shower curtains. Dunno why, but I can’t find them anywhere,” Vas said, clearly put out by the incident. Course he didn’t know they were long gone, going on space adventures of their own!

“Nice try, but you’re not getting out of it this time.” Jacy snaked her arms around the shy young man and squeezed him tight. “You are right about one thing. You smell to all nines.” She released him and held him at arm’s length; a look of sudden revelation on her face. “We should shower together, to save water you know?” She watched the blood rush to his face and for a moment was worried he was going to break into a spontaneous nose bleed.

“Okay, Sugarbear, we can hold off on that. I could stand guard over the shower if you’d like. I’m not much for lying so I’ll tell you straight; I intend to steal a few peaks.” She stood there swaying from side to side like a little girl trying to talk her way into extra puddin. “You could do the same if you like.”

Vas laughed. “Oh! I see! Well, I will have you know I am a proper boy.” He teased. “Can’t be giving away the goods like that!” Though honestly, the prospect was terrifying … but it was a better offer than say Dimitri looking at his gang tats and asking questions. Or Dillion wondering where he got so many scars. Jacy at least … well … she would see it all at some point right? “Joking aside, I guess I don’t have much of a choice do I?” He asked, a bashful blush making its way back.

“We always have a choice, Vas.” She looked down into the crate he’d unlidded. Was the captain intentionally lugging around junk from one planet to the next? She poked around at the contents wondering what they were. “Most people make the wrong choice, though. Either because they didn’t know there was a better option or they had so many options they couldn’t think it through.” Jacy looked down at her hands which were now covered in a light sheen of grease. She quickly ran them through her white hair then held a hand to her mouth in mock surprise. “Oops! Looks like we’ll both need a shower now. There’s one in the shuttle, if you’re okay seeing where I sleep.”

He really was trying to take what the doc said to heart but for such a shy guy like Vas it wasn’t so easy. Even if Jacy was making it that way! “Not even a first date and you wanna see me in my skivvies.”

“I want you to be comfortable being seen in and out of your skivvies. It’s a very freeing feeling when you can just focus on the words to say instead of what you worry someone else will see. You don’t think I was always this comfortable, do you? Well I wasn’t. It has to start somewhere.” She reached up and drew a line across his cheek in grease. “So what do you say?”

“Well …” Vas’s heart pounded. “...If I had a choice of anyone going see me bare it all I suppose I would rather it be you,” He admitted. She was too good to him, more so sometimes than he thought he deserved in this life. Vas took her greased hand in his and started the long mile to her shuttle. Buddhas belly it felt like a 10-mile hike yet all too soon they were at the door to her shuttle. Vas motioned for her to enter first, ever polite.

Jacy stepped over to the tiny stall of a shower and swung the door open. “The water’s really hot in here, so try not to burn yourself. I’ll let you go first.” She held her hand out to offer him one of her softer towels. “I’m no prude, but I’m not going to push you into something faster than you care to go. I think we both know you’re a slower kind of guy. Crap, that sounds terrible. I only mean that you haven’t even expressed an interest, or invited us to attend some socially acceptable event without the company of others. So you get in the shower, I’ll watch the door in case that sneaky Haddie tries to goose you and you can think about where you want to take me when we are planetside.”

“Hey,” Vas said to take her hand before she could escape and nudged her back to him. “I am … interested. I just … “ The punk said struggling with the words. “ … I don’t know how to show it short of telling you.” He explained. “I ain’t got no one that wants me. ‘Cept you it seems. It … you … mean a lot to me.” Vas said with a squeeze of her hand.

“That’s always the best way to say it, Sugarbear. If you get creative or poetic you risk losing the meaning in the message. Now get in there and use soap. But….maybe leave the shower door open just a crack, for my amusement.” Jacy sat down on the edge of her bed to see if Vas was going to disrobe before or after he got in the shower. If it was after, it would prove comical watching him try to pull his clothes off in such a confined space. Maybe he’d need her help…

“Yea yea. Just to be clear it ain’t being naked that's the problem; it’s the questions that get asked when I DO take off the shirt,” He said, unbuttoning his shirt. Vas was not going to jab his funny bone in an attempt to mimic a contortionist in that small space called as a shower stall. He was convinced there was no sparing his delicate dignity at this point and he was sure most men were okay with running around topless. “No hope of you turning around is there?” Vas asked fumbling clumsily with one of the buttons. Nerves.

“There’s always hope; that’s what makes life so much fun. But you really shouldn’t count on it, no. What did you mean a second ago, about questions when you take your shirt off? Are there…..issues you’d like to prepare me for?” Jacy pulled her boots from her feet and lined them up at the foot of her bed. Despite what she said, she did find something to do with her eyes elsewhere than on Vas, at least for a few moments. “I used to get weird questions in the showers, but they weren’t mean spirited. Just curious about one another and…. But what about you?”

“What like a third nipple? No nothing crazy like that.” Vas snickered. “Questionable scars ... Maybe a tattoo …” The punk hinted as he took his shirt off and folded it up before laying it down on a box. “It was different … at the temple. War left a lot of marks on us kids. There was lot’s of interesting story swapping, just with less judgment.” He explained. “When you’ve all done some really bad things to stay alive no one called boo on you. In a way it was nice, being able to talk anything with someone.” He said rolling up his belt as he rummaged for where his towel escaped to … shirtless was one thing but the full monty in front of the girl he was courting … was still something he was a might touchy about.

“I knew a guy with a third nipple; it wasn’t that interesting. It was more like two and a half nipples because it wasn’t even in the center of his chest. It was two lumped together on one breast like a binary star system and a regular nipple off by itself where it belongs. Mine are where they belong as well, in case this conversation had you worried. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Eventually. Have you perfected the art of showering with your pants on Vas, or are you stalling?” Jacy hopped up and grabbed Vas’ towel from where he’d already lost it. She shook it loose and stretched it out between her hands then turned her head away. “Nudity shield is engaged, now get in there and clean your bits and bobbles, Sugar bear.”

“Sweet, thoughtful and considerate.” Vas complimented. Jacy could hear a rustle of cloth, clearly those last bits of Vas’ protection from Jacy’s eyes on his ‘bits and bobbles’ as she put it. The shower turned on and Vas worked to cram his larger frame inside because if Jacy had been a bit smooshed inside, Vas had even less room than that. Though at this point he wasn’t complaining at all and in spite of the heat it was a seriously nice change of pace from the, at best, lukewarm water in the crew showers. Whether he left the door cracked being true to Jacy's request or to give him just enough extra room to turn around when the time came could be left up for debate. Either way, Jacy would have a clear view of Vas’ tattooed backside if she so chose.

“I thought we could play a little game, now that you’re all slippery. Don’t worry, I promise to behave. It’s just a way of getting to know one another. If you don’t want to play, that’s fine too, but you’d have to come out here and kiss me instead.” Jacy waited to see what he’d do and took the chance to crane her neck sideways to view through the cracked door. “Time’s up, we play. I’ll start; what’s something you’ve never done, but have always wanted to?”

“Have an Ice Planet,” Vas said without missing a beat. “I saw one once … always wanted to try one. You?” He asked washing the soap from his eyes.

“I live on an ice planet! It doesn’t belong to me, that would be ridiculous and … well, I have a small house there, but I’m gone ALL the time so a nice family lives there for me and keeps it up and in return, I let them safely mine some of the land. Although, now I think you may have meant the sugary treat. Alright, good to know. Me? I’m kind of doing what I always wanted to do. I’m on vacation, exploring the verse with a rough and tumble bunch. I hadn’t counted on an overdrinking Captain, but he rarely flies the ship so it should be fine. Alright, your turn. See? This is fun. You have soap running down your ass crack, Sugar bear.”

“Apparently the nudity shields have failed,” Vas commented. He couldn’t even give the woman a look as he worked out the soap. Not much he could do about it … just accept fate. “What's your favorite dessert?”

“The shield was only for Shower entry, I’m afraid. We’ll have to come up with some other plan for your departure.” Jacy had already folded the towel and it rested in her lap as she sat once more on the bed. “I wish I were more exciting, but I don’t really eat much dessert. I stay away from sugar and most dairy so that rules out dessert. If we find someone with Ice Planets I’ll just try a bite of yours, fair? Technically that still counts as a question and answer so it’s my turn. Do you think I’ve ever been married?” Vas may have been coming up with questions off the top of his head, but Jacy was not. She had somewhere she was going with each one, but it was all to get to know one another better. She just didn’t think Vas would ask the real questions.

“Nope.” Vas said again without missing a beat, not that he had been looking but he noticed something that would support that. He was feeling a little guilty for soaking in the hot water now. “You ever shot a gun?” He asked. “Um. Can you pass me my towel? Please?” He said turning off the water.

tbc

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