Trying the new menu
Shore Leave: Welcome to Drozana
Location: Mess hall; the Raven's Claw
Miles and Mila had taken residence in one of the few cabins on the ship that were equipped with an en-suite bathroom, and once Ash had taken her leave, Mila immediately disappeared into the shower while her brother took a closer look around. Their accommodation was extremely basic, but they had not expected anything else. Two beds, two lockers, a table, two chairs. Everything they needed, really.
It didn't take Miles too long to unpack, and so he was long finished when his sister's head emerged from the bathroom, with dripping wet hair. "No towels", she mouthed, and, having expected just that when he had found the towels neatly folded in one of the lockers, Miles quickly went to her aid. A moment later, Mila emerged from the bathroom, now wrapped in a towel and looking a lot happier. "Needed that," she said, apparently still having her aural implant switched on. "Your turn?"
When the appointed time for Ash to meet them finally came, the twins were all freshened up, once again wearing their jeans-t-shirt-shirt/waistcoat combo outfits - but now, they both had silver, crescent-shaped badges pinned on. Cheerfully, they greeted Rogers. "Honestly, I needed that. Can't remember the last time I had this good a shower," Miles remarked, laughing. The plumbing in their "apartment" had been less than subpar.
Mila smiled. "Yes," she added. "Feels like a whole new person. Not even bothered by the aurals at the moment. Time to go and eat?"
Ash smiled back at the two of them, "A good shower fixes almost everything." She points to their badges, "Looks good on you. Before long, you'll get promoted and I'll end up working for you. Now let's see what the chef can do."
When the twins entered the busy mess hall, Mila flinched. The noise surrounding her was just too much, and she swiftly turned off her implants. "Sorry, you'll have to do the talking for me," she signed to her brother, who nodded understandingly. Large, noisy crowds had always been his sister's least favourite place to be.
Still, there was the promise of some proper food, and so the two followed Ash to the galley counter.
Ash noticed Mila's discomfort at the crowd and her turning off her implants, maybe this wasn't the best idea. But they did want to go get food, should she just have found a quieter place and just ate replicated food? No, that would have been cruel. The replicators on board are terrible. She put a comforting hand on Mila's shoulder and gave her a knowing smile. She may not be able to sign to the teenager, but hopefully her message was clear: I know you're uncomfortable, I won't make you stay if you don't want to.
She let Miles and Mila get ahead of her to the counter, "Miles, if this is too crowded for both of you, we can always take our food somewhere else, okay?"
Miles shook his head. "Benefit of being deaf, for her, is that she can literally switch the outside world off. We'll be fine, I'll just have to do some interpreting. Thanks though."
Ash nodded at Miles and gave him a smile too before she started looking for the new chef. Her mind briefly flashed back to Renee, who was a chef. She would used to complain about how rude some customers could be when trying to get her attention, so Ash has always made it a point to be less overbearing. After spotting her ans making eye contact to get her attention, she asked, "So, what's good around here?"
After the song she was listening to ended Lennon heard voices just outside the galley. A few moments later the recently-appointed chef emerged from the kitchen and walked up to the counter.
"Welcome to Lennon's kitchen. What can I do for you on this fine day?" Lennon asked.
Ash smiled at her, "I take it your name is Lennon. I'm Ash Rogers and this is Miles and Mila Lynn, the newest additions to the Claw. Whatever they want, it's my treat. You have any recommendations?"
Lennon nodded. "A pleasure. I've gone for Spanish cuisine today - the mains on the menu are tortillas, pisto and patatas bravas. I would have done paella but the quartermaster didn't bring me any rice like I asked him to. For starters I can offer you croquetas, gazpacho or gambas"
Ash nodded and looked over to the twins, "What do you guys think? Sounds good to you?" She looked over at Lennon, "It sounds good to me, one of each of those starters. I'm starving."
Miles had interpreted everything Lennon had said to his sister, who grew more and more excited. After a quick signed discussion, he turned to Lennon. "We will have everything. It's been too long since we had anything with any flavour at all."
Ash laughed, she'll have to talk to Gedak about some side hustles this month to pay for the five rounds of drinks she owes Hatham and now feeding two hungry teenagers. "You heard them," she leaned in closer to Lennon and quietly said, "It's their first good meal in a long time. I'll pay you extra to make it little special for them?"
Lennon nodded as she went over the list of food on her order list. She lowered her voice to respond.
"I always make my food to the best standard but I certainly won't say no to the extra money. Do you want any drinks adding to your order?" Lennon responded.
"I've always been told that you should always be kind to the people that cut your hair and also to the people that make your food," Ash grinned. "I'll take a water for now though," its been a couple of weeks but she still had flashbacks to her night with Hatham and Raven. And the promise of more drinks with Hatham has definitely made Ash appreciate the simple joy of hydration.
"We'll have some peppermint tea, if you have it, please," Miles said, after some translation. "Sweetened with some honey. Thank you very much."
Lennon smirked at Ash as she made a note of the drinks order. Much of what was on the menu was already made - however the Spanish omelette was something she always made to order.
"I'll bring the drinks over in a couple of minutes" Lennon said.
"Hope you two brought your appetite..." Ash said grinning. "When was the last time you guys had a good proper meal?"
Miles was interpreting everything that was being said, and replied on behalf of his sister. "I can't even remember, honestly. Ration bars have been the norm for ages. So, proper food will definitely welcome." He signed at Mila, who groaned, and switched her aurals back on. "Fine," she said, obviously slightly annoyed. "Just because you are too lazy to interpret. You'll just have to deal with me being in a bad mood because of headaches then." Miles shook his head. "Or you should get those damn implants calibrated properly." "You know that's not what the problem is, I just don't like it when it's too loud!" "Well what would you do if I wasn't here?"
Finally, Mila gave her brother a gesture that anyone would understand, and turned to Ash. "Sorry about the idiot. Shall we go and find a table?"
"Of course, let's try to find a table in a quieter corner or something. And maybe afterwards we can go see Dr Gable about those implants if they do bother you. You're part of this crew now so you'll have access one of the best doctors I've ever had the pleasure of working with. She's patched me up more than a few times. And..." Ash chuckled to herself, "You can meet the best doctor in the quadrant Dr Ralaa."
Mila shook her head. "It's not that kind of problem. The implants are working fine. My brain just can't handle inputs it wasn't wired to work with for extended periods of time. I'll be fine."
Lennon went into the galley and prepared the requested drinks. She decided to make a cup of tea for herself - although she had opted for mug of breakfast tea rather than the requested peppermint tea. A couple of minutes later Lennon placed the drinks tray down on the table - placing the glass of water in front of Ash. She then placed an empty cup and saucer in front of each of the twins followed by a generous pot of peppermint tea.
Lennon smiled. "There we are. The food will be about 15 minutes if that's alright?"
"Sounds fine, thank you. So Chef Lennon, what brings you on board this delightful vessel?" Ash asked, doesn't hurt to get to know all of the new faces on board.
"The money my uncle and his business associate were paying me was pretty crap. Raven was offering more money and the chance to gain experience running my own kitchen feeding a large number of people - both of those are kind of important if I want to set up my own restaurant on the Canary Islands one day" Lennon responded.
Even though Lennon looked and sounded nothing like her, and she has yet to sample the cooking... Ash kept getting reminded of Renee and how she finally achieved her dream of leaving the Section and opening her own restaurant. Things almost had a happy ending. She pushed those thoughts out of her head and focused on the here and now.
"Rough life out here though," Ash looked at the twins, "The pay definitely helps. And I'm glad we're helping you get the experience of feeding a large number of people... or in our case, feeding a lot of food to a small number of people." She took a sip of her water. "Canary Islands, eh? You from Earth?"
Lennon nodded. "Yeah I'm from Earth...England to be exact. As for the rough life out here well...I can live with it as the money's much better than what I'd have earned back home washing pots and pans until someone would take me on as a trainee chef. Speaking of which I should probably go and sort out that Spanish omelette..."
"Earth, eh?" Miles shook his head. "Never been there. We're from Cera, an independent colony world. Being out of the Federation means they aren't subject to their laws. Which is good for science and business, I guess. No outside oversight. Cloning and genetic engineering are very highly advanced there." Mila elbowed him. "Ouch! What!" His sister shook her head. "Can we talk about something else? Please?"
Hmm, it would appear that the twins don't really want to talk about their genetic engineering. Understandable. "Of course. So, what do you intend to do with your first paycheck? I'm assuming you're not planning on opening a restaurant."
"I'd need quite a few more pay packets to open my own restaurant. Anyway - I shall have to bid you a temporary farewell as my Spanish omelettes don't cook themselves" Lennon replied.
The chef then stood up and made her way back into the kitchen where she began to prepare the order which she'd been given.
Mila shrugged. "I don't really want anything that costs much money, to be honest." At this, her brother laughed. "As for me, I know I wouldn't be able to afford what I want anyway. I want a fast little ship."
Ash laughed at Miles, considering that the Claw's upcoming mission is trying to steal a BIG fast ship. Wait until he sees the Ourainavassa. "Give it time, Miles. Work hard enough, long enough, you'll get what you want. But I'm like you, Mila. Money is nice, I can afford comfort and some nice toys," Ash said as she pat the new distruptor she had bought a few days ago. "However, just the freedom to do what I need to do is worth its own weight in latinum." She then winks at Miles, "And sometimes you need a fast ship and a good pilot to do that. I'm glad you two joined up with us. I'm surprised no other crew picked you up."
Mila shrugged. "They just didn't want two disabled teenagers I guess, no matter how skilled we may be."
"Their loss. Never let the judgement of others deny you who you really are," Ash said in response. "I've spend entirely too much time trying to fit into a someone else's mold. It isn't worth it. And I hope both of you can explore all of your potential while with us."
Just over a quarter of an hour later everything was ready to take out to Ash and the twins. Lennon placed the starters onto a tray and carefully carried them out to the table - placing each one in front of its intended recipient. Lennon then returned to the kitchen and repeated the process for the main courses.
"Enjoy. If there's anything you need just let me know" Lennon said.
The twins' eyes grew large as they saw the delicacies put in front of them, and Miles' stomach audibly grumbled. "This looks so good," Mila said, full of appreciation. "I tried to learn how to cook, but I never got the hang of it. And this one is completely useless," she added, elbowing her brother once again, who had already begun stuffing his face and growled in protest.
"Well if it's something you're interested in then I can show you how to cook. If you're any good I might even hire you when I open my restaurant" Lennon offered.
Ash laughed as she also dug into the food, "I'm completely useless in the kitchen too. If we can keep getting this quality of fare, I don't think I ever will have to learn. I am well aware of my skills, cooking is definitely not one of them."
Lennon nodded. "Very well. If I can get you anything else then just give me a shout. And just a heads up - tomorrow's menu will be Greek food...although I'm always open to taking special orders instead because I'm not one of those awkward bastard chefs that only serves a set menu"
Miles looked up between bites. "Greek? Think I had that once. I love the stuff. I will need to make sure I get plenty gyros and calamari." His sister laughed. "Careful, you won't fit in the pilot's seat at that rate!"
Lennon grinned. "Ah great - at least I'll have one person here tomorrow"
"Pizza," Ash said with a grin as she looked at the twins. "With pineapple and anchovies... no one would eat that but me, but I don't see a problem with that."
"Sure. I can have a pizza ready for you tomorrow's evening meal...same time as today?" Lennon responded.
Ash looked at the twins and joked, "I don't know about you, but I'll be back tomorrow. Maybe I'll steal some gyro meat and calamari off your plates.... so you could fit into the pilot seat, of course." She then looked at the chef, "Going to have to see how well you do with pizza, Lennon. You've set some high standards here..."
"Why thank you" Lennon replied.
Mila burst out laughing, and, after a few moments, frantically swept her hair away from her left ear, revealing an almost borg-like, silver implant. With a sigh, Miles reached over and clicked a tiny little switch on it. "Great," he said, shooting Ash an annoyed look. "You broke her."
After about another minute, Mila finally drew a deep breath, switched her implant back on, and put her hair back to cover it. "Sorry about that," she said, still chuckling. "I have not laughed like that in a long time. The image of Miles being to fat to fit into a seat is just too good." Her brother rolled his eyes, but remained silent - instead polishing off the last of the starters. "Time for the next course, I think! Oh, do you have a dessert menu, by the way?"
"I generally do those to order. What do you fancy?" Lennon asked.
"A site to site transport for Miles back to his quarters after this?" Ash continued. "I'm not sure Mila and I can carry him back... but since you did mention it... I'm a sucker for tres leches cake..." she looked at Mila with a smile, "Maybe you can figure out a temporal equation to create a quantum singularity in our stomachs so we survive this night?"
Mila chuckled. "The equation is the easy part. Getting the technology to actually do it, though? That will be a bit more difficult."
Lennon grinned. "I'm afraid I'm not in possession of a transporter but I believe the Ferengi dude has a couple of sack trucks down in the cargo bay. As for your tres leches cake then it's your lucky day - I've not long done a sponge so I can put one together for you now or drop it round to your quarters later?"
"Door to door service too, Chef Lennon..." Ash smirked, "Now I know you've earned yourself at least one repeat customer. I think I will take that drop off to my quarters. Some things are best left for savoring."
Lennon smiled. "I'm glad to hear it. What about you two? Can I count on your custom again or will it be my fiercest competitor Chef Replicator?"
Miles nodded. "Oh yes. Definitely. And I will take some of that cake too." His sister shook her head. "Delivery to quarters. You need a break from all the eating."
Lennon made a mental note to prepare three cakes for delivery to quarters. After that she planned to go searching for the synth member of the crew.
"Great. Any other requests before I get to work preparing your dessert orders? Do you want me to ask the Ferengi dude to bring the sack truck up so we can wheel Mr Greedy here back to his quarters?" Lennon responded.
"Gedak would probably charge us extra for that, so Miles, you better be able to walk those calories off. I'll roll you back to your quarters myself," Ash smiled.
Lennon grinned. "He will shite. He owes me because he didn't acquire the rice that I'd asked for which meant I couldn't do paella tonight. If he doesn't get it tomorrow I'll get it myself and claim the money back from petty cash"
"Well, you'll have to let me know whenever paella is on the menu. Its been a while since I've had any. I'll even lean on Gedak for you," Ash smirked. "But not too hard, the man does control our paychecks."
"My uncle told me never to trust a Ferengi when it comes to money...although on this occasion I think I'll give him the benefit of the doubt...on the condition that he makes sure I get my fucking rice tomorrow" Lennon responded.
Miles shrugged. "Ferengi. They are more protective of their Latinum than of anything else, really." She looked at his sister, who was struggling to stifle a yawn. "Anyway, I think it is time for us to get back to our quarters and have a nap. Siesta, I think the Spanish say?"
Lennon grinned. "Probably best. I need to make sure I have some food left - and I really need to get back to the kitchen as I have loads to do. I'll drop the desserts round in an hour or so once I've finished my to do list"