K’avir wasn’t one to deviate from his uniform or the clothes he wore when he was in the gym. Sheila took great pleasure in selecting a dark blue tunic and matching trousers that looked wonderful against his chocolate skin. She smoothed his shoulders and looked into his eyes.
“Do you like it?”
“I am unused to wearing such clothing.”
“It’s something I like. I get tired of seeing you in that crusty old uniform.”
“I want to please you,” he said, taking her hands. “I am not uncomfortable.”
Sheila beamed at him and led him to the table. “I made bruschetta and roasted säskòû gòûlę tenderloin over orzo pasta. The vegetables are extremely fresh, as is the meat. I haven’t cooked in a very long time, but it’s not something you forget. I want to please you too, baby.”
She sat him down and fixed his plate. Then she poured him a glass of the wine. It had a very pretty purple color.
|I totally want some of this.|
“This is Khalaya Moon mountain wine,” she said. “2309; a rare vintage, I’m told. We’ve never had wine before, K’avir.”
“It is not the way of Vulcans to imbibe, ashaya.”
“But you will have a glass with me?”
“Yes,” he said. He would do anything she asked. Anything.
Sheila grinned at him as she served herself. “I would so dearly love to see what you look like tipsy.”
“When you’ve drank too much. If you’ve never had alcohol before, I’m wondering about your tolerance.” She couldn’t see K’avir getting anything remotely close to drunk. “I was told that this particular vintage was extremely potent.”
“I shall be fine.” He looked down at his plate. “I like the way this looks.”
“The bruschetta you have to eat with your hands. Like this,” she said, lifting a wedge piled high with sautéed tomatoes and peppers. Sheila took a large bite and chewed slowly, closing her eyes in bliss. “Mmmmn,” she murmured.
K’avir followed suit and Sheila took extreme joy in seeing his eyes light up.
“Do you like it?”
“I have never tasted anything like this before in my life, ashaya. It is delicious.”
Sheila smiled and took another bite of the bruschetta. The freshness of the vegetables and the tang of the balsamic were marvelous. Then she cut a piece of tenderloin and ate it, curious as to the texture and flavor. It was very tender and juicy and went well with the aldente orzo. The clash of textures combined with the taste of the bruschetta was amazing.
She needed to cook more often.
“Try the tenderloin,” she said, amused to see that he’d finished the chunk of bruschetta in two bites. K’avir forked a large chunk of meat and ate it. He stared at his wife, who raised her wineglass as she dabbed her lips with a napkin.
“Sheila,” he said, smiling again. Her heart fluttered as he reached for another bruschetta slice. He devoured it in two more bites and finished the pasta and tenderloin within minutes. She knew then that he liked her cooking and it made her very happy. There was nothing like preparing meals for someone you adored.
She definitely needed to cook more often.
“I love to see you smile, K’avir.”
“I am not one to show my emotions, ashaya. You are aware of this.”
“I’m not interested in you smiling for the crew. Just for me. When we’re alone. I should be the only recipient of that incredible grin.”
He nodded as he cut another piece of tenderloin and ate it with the orzo. Sheila finished her meal and sipped the wine. It was very light and sweet, made of summertime berries grown only on the north face of Khalaya Moon Mountain. The wine merchant was very eager to share the story of the exceptionally rare 2309 vintage. She insisted that only 100 bottles were produced from that year due to an extended winter that destroyed most of the crops. The berries that were left were extremely large and sweeter than usual. Either way, the wine was excellent and Sheila was very glad to have purchased the only two bottles the merchant had.
She leaned forward and tapped K’avir’s stem. “Raise it. I want to propose a toast.”
“I do not see any bread other than this…what did you call it?”
“Bruschetta. Mmn,” she said. “You’re so adorable. A toast is a way of saluting someone. Hold your glass up.”
He did so. Sheila held hers up and looked into his eyes. “To my husband, my ashayam. I am so grateful to be with you, K’avir. I am so blessed to be your wife. You changed my life. I love you so much.” She tapped his stem and took a long sip.
K’avir stared at her, speechless. He swallowed thickly and found himself drinking the entire glass in one gulp. Sheila looked at him, an eyebrow raised.
“Baby, are you okay?”
“I do not—I do not know how to respond.”
“Just say what you feel, honey. You don’t have to make it pretty. It’s just us, you and me.”
He stared at her, and for a very long time, he looked vulnerable and insecure. Sheila put her glass down, worried. “K'avir, are you sure you’re okay?”
Abruptly, K’avir got up, pushing back from the table. He went to Sheila’s side, and to her utter shock, got on one knee and buried his head in her lap. Stunned, her hands went to his ears and she caressed them. Then he looked at her and got to his feet, pulling her up with him.
He locked his fingers around her neck and tilted her head forward, pressing his forehead against hers. He closed his eyes and she felt the rush of emotion, the feelings he couldn’t verbalize, the passion he didn’t know how to articulate, his overwhelming devotion. After a moment, which could have easily been an hour, he released her and said, “Sheila.” There was nothing else to say. There was nothing else he could say; her name said it all. Tears glazed her eyes and she nodded dumbly, caressing his cheeks.
“I did not mean to upset you,” he said.
“I’m not upset,” she said. “Quite the opposite. I’m still not used to how…powerful…that is.”
“It is how I feel, ashaya. I cannot find the appropriate words to convey it.”
“No,” she said. “No, that was extremely sufficient.” If they made love, she would be overwhelmed…but only if she was a lesser woman. Sheila could handle all of K’avir; had always been able to do so.
“Sheila, would you like to sit back down?”
She looked around and a smile broke. “No. I have a better idea. Don’t move.” She walked over to the console and diddled with the keyboard. Suddenly, music erupted from the speakers. Then she went back over to her husband and put her arms around his neck. “Dance with me.”
“I do not know how to dance.”
“It’s easy. Put your hands on my waist.”
He did so.
“I’ll keep it simple for now. All I’m going to do is sway back and forth. Just sway with me.”
Sheila was barefoot and her toes were painted dark green. K’avir looked down at her feet. “I do not wish to step on your toes, Sheila.”
“Do I look worried?”
“Then don’t you dare worry. Relax. Just follow my lead.”
K’avir had no rhythm and it was difficult for him to sway. He was trying too hard and kept looking at her feet.
“Sheila, I do not know how to do this.” There was the tiniest tinge of frustration in his voice.
“You’re too stiff. Relax, honey. Loosen up. Do you need some more wine?”
“I do not think that will help.”
Sheila stopped moving and moved her hands up to his cheeks. K’avir covered her hands with his and they gazed at each other. Sheila began to whisper and he inclined his head to hear what she had to say. She began to sway again as she spoke, this time shifting her weight between her feet. Without thought, he began to move with her in an attempt to keep up with her secrets. She smiled at him and slid her arms back around his neck.
“Don’t stop moving. Put your hands on my waist. Don’t think about what you’re doing. Think about me.”
“I am always thinking about you, Sheila.”
She gently scraped the back of his neck with her fingernails. A quiet hiss escaped him and then after another long moment, which could have easily been two hours, he smiled at her and said, “What else do you have planned for this evening, ashaya?”