"Yes, Sergeant Dorsey." Her soft smooth voice sounds pleased, almost Japanese in its courtesy. She may as well have said, "Hai, Dorsey-sama." Upon being corrected, Miyazaki bows in the obedient and civil manner of the Japanese. The Meltrandi immediately deletes the use of the word "sir" from her mind when dealing with him from now forward. There is no sense of shame or dismay in her manner here, but instead a small and warm, almost feline smile at being corrected by a superior she hopes to trust more than she does now.Dorsey smiles down at the two of you, then says to Miya, "Don't call me 'sir', I work for a living. Seriously, its Sergeant Dorsey when we are being official, Doug when we are off duty. No need to be so . . . formal all the time.
Miya's eyes widen in pleased surprise at the arrival of Corporal Nova. "Corporal Nova! How fortuitous that you should be part of our team!" Miya does not know many Meltrandi beside her clone-sisters, for most of those loyal to Earth left before she had any chance to meet them. Miyazaki looks up to Corporal Nova, a touch of wonder and admiration in her gaze."I'm right here, Sgt. Dorsey." That came from behind the large man, and he steps aside to reveal Nova. "Reporting in as ordered." Her eyes dart over to Miya and Steven, then back to Doug.
"Corporal Bishop! Our prowess only increases at your presence." The petite Meltrandi returns his nod, her bob of white hair fluffing about in the springtime air. Then she clenches her little fists in excitement. "Did you hear? We are to away to Brazil! That means I shall have the opportunity to practice my Spanish and meet the Portuguese too! How exciting! What do you think they like to eat? Should we pack along some wares from here in Monument City? Some items might be valuable in trade!" By "trade," anyone who knows Miyazaki and what she does for a living can easily make the link that she's not talking about trading toys for toys, but toys for the grand ultimate of all currencies - information!Steven heads over, moving slowly through the crowd until he is standing nearby the two. Giving Miya a nod, he looks to Doug and says, "Sergeant Dorsey? I'm here to check in with you."
Now are there any questions for me that I have answers for? As I said, my door will always be open."
He looks to each of you expectantly.
"Oh," Miyazaki reaches an internal consensus on her own queries. Miyazaki's voice is lower than one might think from one her size. "Steven," she offers with an air of unobtrusive confidence, "the Brazilians are Portuguese-speaking people. My own many levels of Spanish will only get me so far. But Spanish is spoken in many more countries than Portuguese. If you would like, perhaps I could teach you enough to take part in casual conversation? It would make us even for the time you spent teaching me about our Spartas machines and allow me to return my appreciation!"Steven shakes his head at Dorsey's question. "No, Sergeant, I've got no questions for you yet. I don't know enough about our assignment to ask the right ones, if that makes any sense. I will say that I've never been south of the Equator before, so this will be a bit of an experience. Depending on how long we are there, I may have to start to cram in some Spanish language training. Join the military and see the world, right? Well, the recruiters have kept their word so far."
Miya rubs her nose. "Forgive my ignorance, Steven, but what is an arcade and is this Flynn perhaps a friend of yours? I would hate to impede upon his hospitality without at least bringing some gift of appreciation."Hey, I know! We can start out by going out to Flynn's Arcade. They have the latest VR technology in the place, and I for one enjoy dropping tokens in to test my hand-eye coordination. Besides, I think it's a lot of fun. After, we can snag a bite to eat somewhere."
Miyazaki's following laugh is as pleasant as it is pretty. "Color me appreciative. That is not the way I imagined spending my graduation day - hauling in a fellow classmate who lost his sanity!""This has been my place to decompress when I've felt really stressed between my various classes. The games allow me to beat the crap out of some virtual bad guys and not lose it and do that in real life. Not quite as satisfying, but it kept me out of the arms of our friendly GMP jailers."
He looks around, then says, "Anyone in the mood for a fruit smoothie? My treat."
"I am too," Miyazaki folds her hands in thought. "While I can see their point, I cannot bring myself to surrender to it, but nor can I ignore it. How would I feel if a race of alien giants destroyed most of my world and people? How might I carry on in the aftermath toward those who said they were now on my side and willing to fight their own? Especially when, unlike my people, the human race has only known itself and no other intelligent species anywhere." Miyazaki finishes her peach smoothie and discards it properly. "'To thine own self be true.' William Shakespeare. I choose not to make their problems my own. Speaking as a GMP officer, I think I will have enough problems of my own to worry about when I am putting my life on the line for their continued survival, don't you think?" She giggles, her blue eyes dancing in humor."Ah. I was worried for a few minutes there. Nova, Miya, I am sure you've had other moments of prejudice, but I am sorry that you had to experience this on our time out. I'm just glad that your idea of playing for drinks worked, or else we could very well be in a tussle with those boys."
Miyazaki militarily reassesses the arcade and everyone in it before speaking. "A marvelous idea, Doug! Until then, let us enjoy what down-time we have left, shall we?"The large man nods, saying, "True. It would have been a bit awkward to have to explain ourselves to the MPs if things went south on us." His face darkens a bit, then he says, "Just make sure that none of us get caught outside by ourselves. I can see these punks hiding out, looking to jump one or two of us and deliver a beat-down. Lets not give them that chance, just in case."
Nova seems to really take to Air Hockey and really likes that game, with her exceptional reflexes and hand-eye coordination, while Doug enjoys play Foosball with whomever he can cajole into playing with him. All in all, a good time is had by all.
Miyazaki plays all of the games, especially the ones she turns out to be lousy at. Her lively shrieks of laughter and surprise can be heard throughout the arcade as she plays and plays, losing far more often than winning. The winning or losing does not appear to matter to her but instead the time spent enjoying herself with comrades. This is being alive! She adapts as quickly as she can while making the most of her reflexes, mind, and inability to take anything that takes place here personally. This young lady has left her ego at the door and in doing so has left herself open to play in the spirit of the game.Throughout all their time in Flynn's, Steven is splitting his attention between having fun blowing the pixels out of some virtual bad guys and the rest of the time he's talking to the others, trying to get to know them all a bit better and let them get to know him. All the better to be able to do the mission (whatever that mission turns out to be) and come back home alive.