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[personal profile] velvetfiction
Title: Lady-like
Author: [personal profile] velvetmouse
Character: Christine Chapel, Reboot universe; mentions of past Chapel/Korby, implied Chapel/McCoy
Rating: PG-13 for, well, swearing
Prompt: 23. I swear… when it's appropriate.
Word Count: 876
Notes: Written for the Best Damn Drabble Fest in the 'verse at [ profile] where_no_woman

Christine Chapel was raised to be a lady. And a lady never swears. Not out loud, anyway.

I. Christine lays her head down on her textbook and tries not to fall asleep. Why did she think getting her BA in Nursing and RN license at the same time was a good idea, again? All of her friends have nice, normal majors like Vulcan Language and Literature or Astrophysics. Oh, right. Because her mother insisted that she have a useful degree; and anyway, she's always had an interest in healing people.

She sits up wearily and tries to focus on the book in front of her. Her friends think she's crazy for using the old fashioned print versions of the texts; she's given up trying to explain to them that her memory seems to be intimately tied with the tactile sensation of holding a book.

Her PADD buzzes and, grateful for the momentary distraction, she pulls up the message that just came in. It's from Shallan, inviting her to come drinking. Again. It's the third time this week, even though Christine has told them all repeatedly that she's on the graveyard shift at the hospital this week.

Fucking humanities majors, she thinks unkindly even as her fingers type out a polite rejection on the PADD.

II. The Enterprise rocks as it is hit again, and Christine is suddenly absurdly grateful that the biobeds are welded to the floor.

The universe is collapsing around her – literally, if what she's hearing is correct – and sickbay is in a state of barely contained chaos.

When Christine sees the body of Dr. Puri being brought in, clearly beyond any hope of recovery, she takes a deep breath and resolutely ignores the voice in her head that is repeating FuckityfuckityfuckityFUCK-WE'REALLGONNADIE!! over and over. Panicking is the last thing she needs to do right now, and she glances around, outwardly calm.

Seeing the person she needs, five quick strides take her to the sickbay doors, and she grabs the blue-clad arm before it can vanish into the hallway.

"Bones," she hisses urgently to the man she has spent many hours with in the Academy infirmary, "Puri is dead. You're senior attending now."

He blinks at her in shock for a moment. "Fuck." His expletive is no less intense for its low volume.

Christine quirks a slight, sympathetic smile at her friend. "Indeed," she concurs.

III. Christine stands in the living room of the apartment she and Roger have shared for the last year and tightly clenches her hands into fists at her side. It's either that, or deck the smug bastard.

God damned arrogant bastard, she growls to herself as she listens to her fiancé explain once again why he thinks she should stay planet-side while he goes off gallivanting to another star system.

It's been six months since the destruction of Vulcan and Roger has only gotten more insistent in his demands that she remain behind. "I'll be distracted from my work, if I have to always have to worry about what ship you're on or what horrid mess the Federation has gotten you into this time," he says.

Stay home like a good little wife and wait for the famous Roger Korby to come home, is what he means.

"Resign from Starfleet," he implores. "Surly we could find you a nice academic position. It's safer that way."

My wife shouldn't be dumb but should never out-shine me, either, is what he doesn't say.

Not on your fucking life, she thinks, but doesn't stay. Instead, she calmly waits until Roger has finished before she takes off her engagement ring (gaudy thing that it is, meant for display to his friends, not in accord with her own tastes) and places it gently on the coffee table. Then she spins on her heels and stalks to the bedroom, where she pulls out her duffel and begins throwing clothes into it at a rapid rate. She grabs her few pieces of jewelry from the dresser and tosses those in as well.

"I'll let you know where you can send the rest of my things in a few days," she says to the still-stunned man sitting on the couch.

The slam of the front door is as close to saying "fuck you" as she'll get.

IV. Christine is back on the Enterprise again. She isn't sure who pulled what strings, but before she could even think about applying to any residency programs, she is informed by Admiral Pike that, having completed her combined M.D. and PhD in medical xenobiology, she would be doing her residency on the Enterprise under the CMO, Dr. Leonard McCoy. The twinkle in Christopher Pike's eyes when he informs her of this tells Christine that the Admiral is perfectly well aware of where things stand with her and the good doctor. The slight edge in his voice says louder than words, Don't fuck this up.

Christine isn't the only one who doesn't need to swear to make a point.

And so she finds herself on a five year mission to explore the furthest reaches of known space, to seek out new life and new civilization. To complete her residency.

And, damned if she isn't having the time of her life.


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