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Grand Palace

Posted on Tue Jul 5th, 2022 by Jami Bostru & Matthias Cohen [Belmont] & Owen Grayson [S'Toriin] & Dillon Reade [M. de Planca] & Leah Reade [Mackenzie] & Todd Bancroft [Kingsley] & Sohna Vem [Hayashi] & T'Vral [Moneaux]

Mission: Episode 18 - Half A Life
Location: Transport Ship, Drezenia
Timeline: Day 1 at 1600
2238 words - 4.5 OF Standard Post Measure

From the moment that Sohna Vem had left the girl’s dormitory she’d been awestruck by the sheer beauty of the city where they were at. The Drezenian people were artists and sculptures there was no doubt about that to the Trill teenager. She still didn’t quite trust them as they stood and waited for the other four that they’d been told about to arrive at the meeting spot.

Dillon had been anxious the entire ride aboard the transport because he knew that at the very least his sister had been one of the captives. He wanted to demand that Sarzu let them see the girls sooner than they had, but before he could really say anything Sarzu had left them to get ready. So as they disembarked the transport the first thing he did was run forward and scoop his sister up into his arms.

Leah was facing away from the transport when she was suddenly picked up off her feet and spun around. She grunted and when she realized it was her older brother she wrapped his neck and hugged him tightly. “Okay can you put me down now,” She said though her voice was slightly muffled from being buried in his neck.

Dillon put her back onto the ground, “Sorry,” He said.

Todd rubbed the back of his head when he realized that two of the girls were people he didn’t know, “Hello,” He said rather sheepishly to Jami and Leah. He looked at the other two girls, “So, I’m Todd.” Todd told them.

T’Vral blushed slightly, “I’m T’Vral and this is Sohna,” She said while pointing between herself and Sohna.

Matthias eyed Owen and then looked at the Vulcan teenager. He tried to imagine a time his friend Chialek ever got embarrassed. Then without having any examples to fall upon his gaze returned to T’Vral, “Matthias Cohen,” He said to her. “And this is Owen Grayson.”

Owen looked at his friend and shook his head, “Yes,” He said. “Nice to meet the two of you.” He looked around and saw that the Drezenians had left them to their own devices for the moment. “Have either of you sorted out how to get off this planet?” He whispered.

“Not yet,” Sohna said quietly.

Jami didn’t think it would be possible for them to actually do that, “I’m not sure if we even can do that.” The Betazoid teenager told the boys. “They seem to not have any ill intentions thus far anyway.”

Todd wanted to laugh, “That seems highly unlikely,” He said. “But I suppose we’re about to find out what they mean to do with us. Sarzu said something about wanting to learn more about us and our culture, but I don’t buy it.”

Dillon eyed Todd while standing next to his little sister, “Well so far they’ve offered us clothing and don’t seem intent on harming any of us. Also we’re only divided by gender and nothing else. Though I’d rather not be apart from my sister,” He pointed out.

Leah tried her best to not roll her eyes as she went over and stood between Owen and Matthias. She no longer felt like she was the only one her age with the rest of the group. The rest of them were teenagers and that made her feel a bit awkward. “I trust Jami.” She told them.

Valenza came around the corner to see the group of children standing there waiting for their next destination. “I deeply apologize to keep you all waiting,” The Drezenian told them. Valenza looked up at the children as they got closer, “The next transport will take us through the heart of the capital city where you will have the honor of meeting the Monarch.”

“Where’s Sarzu?” Sohna asked. “Wasn’t Sarzu the one that was supposed to be giving us this tour and all that?”

Valenza looked at the Trill, “Sarzu is preoccupied with another matter. However, they will be meeting up with you in your quarters later this evening. After our tour has concluded and you’ve met up with the Monarch. First you’ll be meeting with the Monarch and I believe that is where the planned meal is,” Valenza expressed.

Sohna saw no point in arguing, “Very well,” Sohna replied.

Valenza presented a smile before bowing low and indicating the hovercraft that was parked next to where the children were at. “Please step aboard,” Valenza said and stepped out of the way so that the children could get onto it.

Jami sat down next to Sohna Vem after they had gotten onto the transport. She leaned over to the Trill, “Perhaps it would be wise for only one of us to do the talking with the Monarch?” She whispered the question so that nobody could hear her.

Sohna liked that idea, “Yeah,” She said and looked over at Todd, “Jami thinks only one of us should do all of the talking.” She whispered.

Todd thought about it, “Unless they ask us specific questions,” He whispered back. “I doubt the younger children say much of anything. And since we are the oldest here it would be wise to assume that one of us should do all of the talking.”

Jami had turned around, “I doubt they say much of anything as well.” She looked at the three younger children and considered them for a moment. They were sitting together near the back of the transport.

Leah sat between both Owen and Matthias, “So when I woke up this morning I wasn’t in my own bed. I don’t know if Mom is trying to figure out where I’m at or not, but she must have noticed that I was missing by now. And same with Dillon, you don’t just lose two kids and not notice.”

“I doubt it,” Owen told her quietly, “Sarzu said they replaced us so that it looks like we’re still on the planet or the station. They must have been watching us for some time before taking us because they know our names and everything like that. There doesn’t seem to be much they don’t know about us either.”

Matthias played with his fingers, “There has to be some way for us to get back. I don’t think they’ll keep us here forever,” He said quietly. “I hope they don’t because I already miss my Mom. This is worse than all the times she’s gone out on the ship and been away from the station. I like my cousins and all,” He added, “But I’d rather be with her.”

Owen nodded, “I understand that.”

Todd looked at Dillon, “I wonder what Adriana is doing?” He asked, “Probably on a date with the fake me or something weird like that. She’s going to not be happy when she figures out that I’m not really there.”

Dillon nodded, “I think Riley will feel the same way when she learns that Jami isn’t there either.” He remarked.

Jami heard the comment, “I didn’t even think about that.”

T’Vral heard the two of them talking, “Yeah. I don’t think our families or friends are going to be all that thrilled when they learn what happened. We have to figure out an escape first though,” She added the last part in a whisper.

Sohna nodded, “Just let Todd and I do the talking with the Monarch person okay?” She asked the others.

Leah heard what was said, “I didn’t plan on saying anything.” She said and looked at her two friends sitting next to her. “I think it’s a better idea to let you all do the talking anyway,” Leah added. She was rather upset about being taken away from her big brother and mother. However, at least she had Dillon on the transport with her so it wasn’t all bad.

Valenza looked at the eight children as the transport came in for a landing just outside the imperial palace. “This is the imperial palace.” They said and indicated the large building with a dome on the top. “The Monarch lives here,” Valenza continued, “Where the Monarch rules over all Drezenian kind.”

Valenza stepped off the transport and awaited the children to step down as well, “You will also be dining here this evening. It is customary for all guests to be treated to their first official meal on Drezenia with the Monarch. The Monarch is awaiting us so let’s go down to them.”

Marju stood at the opening of the imperial palace gates with their security detail and watched as the eight children stepped down from the transport. As soon as they were standing in front of Marju that was when Marju bowed, “I am Marju, the Drezenian Monarch,” Marju identified themselves to the children. “No need to introduce yourselves as Sarzu has already told me all about each of you.”

Sarzu stood behind the Monarch, “Thank you Valenza,” Sarzu said to the person that had escorted the children. “Did you enjoy your time traveling through the city?”

Sohna stepped forward so that she was in front of the other children, “We really didn’t get to see too much.” She told Sarzu, “We have a lot of questions too,” She added. “Like when will we be allowed to return home? And also how are we going to get there?”

Marju had expected that because each time they brought guests to the planet it was the same thing. “We estimate that your time here will last a matter of days,” They said to the children. “As for your journey back,” Marju started to say, “It will be much the same as the journey to get here. Don’t bother attempting to escape the planet as I assure you that’s very much impossible without our help. We want to learn all about you and your ways. It is best to consider this to be an opportunity and don’t worry your families are quite safe without you there.”

Sohna looked at the others before her gaze returned to Marju once more, “All right.” She said knowing that they would probably each be discussing that later in the evening. “How do you intend on learning more about us?”

Sarzu stepped around the Monarch and answered for the children, “Well we are going to be showing you around the rest of the city. Most likely this will occur based on how we’ve subdivided you. We have questions that we’ll ask each of you, which partially will happen this evening over the meal. We’ve created quite a feast for you so we hope that you’re hungry.

“Is having you explore the city based on your obvious differences okay?” Sarzu asked.

Leah hadn’t intended on speaking until that moment, “Sorry Sohna,” She squeaked suddenly, “I would like to be with my big brother and my friends when we explore the city and when I eat.” She said referring to Dillon, Owen, and Matthias.

Sarzu looked up at Leah with a soft expression across its face, “If this is feasible with the others I do not see a problem with it. You’ll still have to sleep with the older females though.” Sarzu told her.

Leah looked at Sohna again, “Sorry,” She mumbled.

Todd spoke up, “I have no problem with Leah going with Dillon, Matthias, and Owen if that would make her feel more comfortable. I can explore with T’Vral and them so long as Dillon looks after the younger children?” He asked, looking at Dillon.

Dillon didn’t need to be told twice to make sure his sister was safe, or Matti and Owen for that matter. “Of course I’ll look after them,” He added.

“Then it is settled,” Sarzu said. “Leah will spend her time with Dillon, Owen, and Matthias while Todd goes with T’Vral, Sohna, and Jami.” He bowed out of the way once more and disappeared behind the Monarch.

Marju spoke up, “Now then let us all get inside so that we may enjoy the feast and the company. I have so many questions for each of you because you’re the first children we’ve ever encountered.”

Jami was confused by that, “We’re the first children you’ve ever encountered?” She asked.

Marju nodded, “Why yes,” They answered. “Drezenians don’t have children, at least not in the same sense that you may know of it. That is a big reason why we brought the eight of you here instead of your parents. The idea of having children is so alien to us,” Marju said. “I’m sure we’ll learn a lot about you in the coming days, but enough of that let’s go eat and talk.” Marju then started towards the entrance.

Jami looked at Marju before she looked at the other children. She could sense the utter confusion by each of them as they started towards the entrance to the imperial palace. Jami wasn’t sure how that could even be possible. She’d never encountered, much less figured her mother had encountered, a species that couldn’t have children. Jami was now more curious than she had been before that moment.


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