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Working out differences

Posted on Thu Mar 11th, 2021 @ 9:43pm by Lieutenant Aurora Vali & Commander Savar cha'Salik hei-Surak Talek-sen-deen
Edited on on Thu Mar 11th, 2021 @ 9:59pm

Mission: The Jungle
Location: Brig

Having located Haldeman’s wife and daughter Aurora had brought Allison to see her husband. It had taken some persuading but she’d eventually agreed. Walking into the brig together Aurora waited for Alison to approach her husband then went to stand outside to give them some privacy.

Haldeman lay on his bunk, his eyes closed. He could hear footsteps approaching his cell but he didn't open his eyes. The footsteps stopped outside his cell and silence filled the space.

“The Counsellor said you wanted to see me” Allison stood arms crossed glaring at her husband. She was angry and in pain at the loss of their son.

He knew that voice! Opening his eyes he saw Allison standing there, anger in tone and murder n her eyes. He got up and walked to the front of the cell. "I just wanted to say again I'm sorry Allison. Sorry for Alex's death and for you and Amanda being stuck on that planet for ten years."

Allison shook her head. “Sorry! You’re sorry!! You stood there and watched them kill our son!!” She stopped talking and took a deep breath. “The only reason I’m not walking out of here is because I promised Aurora I’d hear you out.

"You hate me. I understand that. I'm not asking you to forgive me. I can't forgive myself. I just wish you'd understand Alli."

“I don’t ..” Allison paused. Somewhere deep down inside she still loved her husband but her pain had overridden that during the years on the planet. “I don’t hate you” her voice was calmer, less angry than before. “I’m angry, yes! Ten years on that planet, having to protect our daughter from threats of harm! Having to watch you on that damn screen every time you ... killed someone!”

"Alli...." He sighed. "I didn't kill anyone! I was a pawn, a puppet for those who actually ran the game." His voice anguished full of pain.

“But you ...” She paused. “Years of anger had clouded her judgement and now they were free she was confused what was going to happen next. “Amanda has asked to see you. I didn’t want to bring her here, to see you ... like this.”

"You did the right thing." He assured her, "Maybe Captain Kaylen will let me out long enough to see her and you." He looked into the eyes of the woman he still loved. "You look good Alli." He said softly.

Allison opened her mouth to say something then closed it again. Her frown became a small smile, she needed her husband and she knew it but it would take time and trust to rebuild what they’d had before. “You look like hell.”

A small chuckle escaped his lips. "I feel old, tired. Alli." He admitted, wishing things were different back like they were when they were in a different world and time before tragedy struck.

“Tom I ...” She didn’t know what to say or do, whether to keep the distance her anger had put between them or pull together as the family their son would have wanted them to be. “Alex wouldn’t have wanted us to be like this.” She held onto a locket that was around her neck, inside we’re a few precious ashes from their son’s cremation on the planet. “As Amanda is so fond of telling me, I can’t stay angry at you forever.”

He didn't talk he just looked at her. He was surrounded by people and was completely alone and adrift. Estranged from his wife and daughter where all he had wanted was to keep them safe.

Allison knew that look, it was one she’d seen several times during their years of marriage. “What’s going to happen now? Has the Captain said anything to you?”

"The crew will be returned to Earth for debriefing and counseling. I'll probably be headed to the New Zealand penal colony." Tom replied.

“Penal colony” Allison shook her head. “How am I supposed to explain that to Amanda?”

"Tell her the truth that Captain Kaylen doesn't believe me when I say I was a puppet in this whole sorry affair." Tom replied softly.

“The Counsellor tells me she’s handed in her report, perhaps that’ll change the Captain’s mind.” Allison offered some words of hope but there was very little else she could do.

Tom nodded, "Maybe." He agreed. "I'm sure I'll find out soon enough. Captain Kaylen isn't one to beat around the bush."

“Tom ... I’m sorry.” Allison sighed. “I should have given us more of a chance, instead I let my anger rule my heart and I shut you out. For what it’s worth I’m sorry.”

"Stop it Alli. No beating yourself up over this. We'll find a way to carry on and go forward."

“If we get a chance!” Allison looked annoyed again. “I should be going, the Counsellor is waiting. I’ll wait and see what the Captain says.

"Alright Alli. Come back if you get the chance." Tom told her. "Oh Alli? I love you." He added as he went back to the bunk to lie down.

Allison stopped in her tracks, it had been a long time since she’d heard that. “I .. love you too.” With that she headed out of the brig hoping for something of a miracle.


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