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Revelations Part Two

Posted on Thu Dec 6th, 2018 @ 6:13am by Lieutenant Jonathan Forrest

Mission: These Are the Stories...
Location: USS Relentless
Timeline: 13 Years Ago

/=\Uss Relentless Thirteen Years Ago/=\

Previously in Part One

“No!” Alex blurted out at first, his cheeks growing red. He had just spent the last few minutes making excuses for his outfit. The long, skirt-like tunic and tights was the style of the time. The frilly outer edges and the bodice design on the leather breastplate was because elves were kind of effeminate. The little bit of makeup….okay, he didn’t have a good excuse for it. A short, silver sword rested on his right hip and he had a bow and quiver over his shoulder. Alex met Jonathan’s eyes with absolute terror. He lowered his head. “Yes….”

Jonathan gave his brother a measured look. He didn’t understand why Alex wanted to be a girl but it didn’t really bother him.”Okay, well it’s kind of a little weird, but it’s your character, you can play a girl if you want to. So, are you ready?”

And Now the continuation:

Alex lifted his head up. “Y-yeah,” he slowly responded, surprised by his brother’s relative acceptance. “Computer, continue program.”

The scene changed from the holodeck grid to a forest scene. A large horse appeared near each of them, ladened with packs. A third horse appeared in the distance, trotting towards them. Sitting atop it was an elf boy about their age. His outfit was far simpler than Alex’s, less refined. “Princess Angela, I’m glad I found you. The luhta forest isn’t safe to travel alone, Highness.”

“It’s okay Taegan, I can take care of myself,” Alex said, stepping into the character role. His voice was confident, he stood up straighter, and Jonathan thought he saw the first sign of a smile on his brother’s face in weeks. “And, besides, I wasn’t alone. I found an ally to help us in our quest. This is--” he--or rather she--looked at Jonathan expectantly.

Hearing his brother referred to as Princess, was slightly more disconcerting for the eleven-year-old than seeing him dressed as a girl. But he was caught up in the moment and the excitement. This was something new and he loved novelty. And besides seeing a smile on Alex’s face, one that had been missing for so long was well worth it.

He was caught by surprise by the request for a name. He really hadn’t thought about it. It took him a few seconds to come up with something. “I am Lord Byron, of the Queen’s Guard. At your service.”

"Well met, m'lord" Taegan replied. "We should continue milady."

Alex walked over to one of the horses--a beautiful white mare--and climbed up onto the saddle. "Taegan is right, it's not safe to stay in one place for too long. There are trolls in luhta. We must travel swiftly but quietly so as not to alert them to our presence."

Jonathan had ridden a horse before an exact total of one time. But as always in an unfamiliar situation, he put on an air of confidence. His horse, a roan mare, seemed calm, as he climbed in the saddle.

Then the trio started riding down the forest trail.

The holodeck knew what they were there for. They didn't have to go far when they heard a voice crying out for help further down the path. Alex spurred the white mare down the trail, trotting towards the call. Ahead was a wagon, one of its large wooden wheels cracked and broken. The owner, an older man, looked desperate and anxious.

Alex stopped the horse and climbed down. "What's the matter, good sir. Is there something we can do to--"

All around them leaf piles burst and Humans dressed in earthy browns and green popped up, aiming bows at them. A few drew swords and approached. One of the bandits wore a ring on every finger and had a thick mustache. "Ah, royalty, it must be our lucky day," he sneered. "And the princess no less. The king will pay anything if it means saving the life of his daughter."

Alex drew the bow and nocked an arrow. "I won't be going anywhere with you."

Jonathan had been about to jump off his horse and rescue his brother, or the princess, from the bandit, when he/she aimed an arrow at the villain So instead, he moved his horse forward with a bit of uncertainty, and attacked one of the other of the bandit crew, bringing his sword down on the man’s shoulders.

The man in front of him dropped. Alex's program was relatively bloodless, more focused on fun and adventure than realistic consequences. The bandits screamed and charged. Arrows flew loose at them.

Alex--the Princess--started to fire back, hitting a few of the bandits on their charge towards them. "We need to get the leader! Do you think you can hold them off?" she asked Jonathan.

“Of course, Al...my princess.” Lord Bryan declared as he moved towards the mustachioed man. There was a short but intense battle which Jonathan/Bryan won.

“Now what?” he asked turning towards the princess and her guide.

Alex was smiling. His brother had called him, 'princess.' It was such a small, stupid thing, but it made him happy, if only for a moment. "Now we continue onto the next challenge."

The boys played for over an hour, facing down trolls, and skeletons before reaching a dank dungeon hidden deep in the woods. That was when their holodeck time came to an end. As soon as it was over, Alex's face fell, as he was forced back to reality, where nothing at all had changed.

"That was fun," he said in a monotone. Trying to process everything he was feeling, and failing to do so.

“Yeah, it was kinda fun,” his brother replied still thinking about all the action. “Can we do it again next week? This was almost as much fun as Starship Captain. I told you, you had a good imagination, Alex.”

“Yeah, we can do it again next week,” Alex said. He turned his back to Jonathan. “Um, would you mind leaving first so I can change?” It was another bit of strangeness. When they were together, the boys always shared a room, but recently he wouldn’t change with Jonathan around, instead opting to do so in the bathroom right after a shower. There was a second reason for Alex, too. His costume was elaborate and somewhat thorough. After Jonathan’s initial reaction to the outfit, he didn’t want to give him more fodder by letting him see what the undergarments were like.

Jonathan rolled his eyes, “It’s not like we don’t know what each other looks like,” he commented, “but fine, I’ll turn my back it if makes you happy.” And that was exactly what he did.

“Thank you.” Alex still felt awkward with Jonathan even in the same room. He hurriedly started to change, dropping his bow and sword on the floor of the holodeck first, then his armor. He glanced back over his shoulder at Jonathan to make sure he wasn't looking before taking off the tunic, revealing just how far he had taken his female role.

Jonathan didn’t exactly understand what was going on with Alex, or why he had to keep his back turned to him, he wanted to talk to his mother about it, but he stood unmoving for about five minutes. “Are you done yet?” he asked with a hint of impatience.

“Give me another minute.” Alex quickly dressed in his boy clothes and set his princess outfit to be destroyed by the holodeck, scrambled back into molecules. “I’m done.”

Jonathan, not caring that Alex was there took off his clothes and changed.

Alex’s mood was improved that evening. He even ate a little bit at dinner time, but by the late evening, it was business as usual, with his mood growing foul. The young Forrest-Samuel went to bed well before their bedtime, leaving Jonathan and Marcie alone.

“Mother,” Jonathan said, “Can I ask you something?”

“Of course dear, you know you can ask me anything. What is it?”

“Why would a guy want to play a girl?”

She did her best to mask her surprise wondering why he had asked such a question, especially just out of the blue.


Before she went too far out on a limb, or too lengthy of an explanation she asked, “Is this something you’ve been wanting to do?”

“Nah, not me,” Jonathan said, “but we were playing in the holodeck. Uh, Alex and I, and it was his program and he wanted to play a princess, not a prince.” Then he quickly added, “It was a fantasy thing.”

Marcie made a mental note to ask the counselor about that the next day, she wasn’t sure if it meant anything or not, but she would talk to the doctor about it. To Jonathan, she just said, “It’s nothing to worry about, I’m sure it’s just normal curiosity. Did it bother you?”

“No, not really. It was just, I don’t know weird, but not icky weird. Just weird weird.”

In the morning, Alex woke up late. Jonathan was already out of bed and it was their mother who had just entered the room. Alex quickly rolled over so his back was to her

“Boys,” she told them, you’re going to have to get up and changed. I want you both to take a shower. Then, you’re going to have to get breakfast on your own. We are all going to see Doctor Farys today. We have an appointment for 0930.”

Alex knew who Dr. Farys was, he was the counselor, the mind doctor. He sat up quickly and looked down off his bed at his mother. "We don't have to go. We're fine, we're not sick."

“Yeah Alex is right,” Jonathan quickly agreed with his brother. “I mean he’s a nice guy but there’s nothing wrong with us.”

“There are things going on,” Marcie said, “things we need to talk about. As a family.”

Jonathan cut his gaze between his mother and his brother and felt a sudden fear. “You, you and mom aren’t going to get a divorce are you?” he asked.

“No, we’re not. Not even close. But we are going to go and we are going to discuss some things with him.”

“You think there’s something wrong with me,” Alex said coldly, his eyes locked on his mother. “There’s not, I’ve just been tired. But I promise I’ll wake up early and go to school and eat my dinner. I’ll do whatever you want, just please, don’t make me go there.”

Jonathan looked over at Alex. “It’s okay little bro, I know it’s a pain but you know mother. She’s just, you know, being mother. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with you. Let’s just do it and get it over with.”

Marcie looked at him gratefully. “Go and get in the shower. Don’t make me have to give you an order. You’re not too old to spank you know.” Then in a calmer tone, she continued, “Johnny’s right. There is nothing wrong with you. But we just need to talk to him. Now, please, go on.”

Pleading didn't work so Alex tried a different tactic, a dangerous tactic. He pursed his lips tightly. "No. I'm not going."

Jonathan gave his brother a look of surprise and stepped out of the way.

Marcie took a firm grip on Alex’s arm. “Alexander, I don’t recall making it a request. You are going and that’s final.”

TBC

Lt. Jonathan Forrest
USS Scorpio
Squadron Leader
(Young Jonathan, Marcie)

Kristine Chester
Alex

 

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