Atlantis Logo

Log of the Month for July, 2019

Weighty Words
Posted on July 10th, 2019 by Emilaina Acacia and Diego Ricardo Navarro

by Emily Acacia and Diego Ricardo Navarro

Two grey Andalusian horses galloped through a high river valley of northern Spain, their riders exchanging glances as they passed back and forth. Diego Ricardo Navarro pulled alongside his companion, Emily Acacia, and lingered a moment before retaking the lead, although they were not racing. She was still a mystery to him, but that was part of her allure; they had danced at the ship’s anniversary party, and although they had danced before, this time was different. It had struck him that for the first time he’d seen her in something pretty, even at prior parties she was usually somewhat conservative and closed-off.

In their conversation and dance, Diego Ricardo had found her to be freer than ever before, and felt like there had been a spark between them. That spark was accompanied by something else that he just couldn’t put a finger on, but it wasn’t enough to deter him from finally asking her to a date on the holodeck. Despite seeming surprised, Emily had fortunately accepted, and here they were in the foothills of the Pyrenees, their holographic horses trotting to a stop at the riverside to drink. He hopped down and offered her a hand, though he was certain based on his observation of her riding ability that she did not need it.

Her feet hit the ground before she even noticed his extended hand and she smiled, covering her mouth to half-hide her blush. She followed close by his side, spinning to take in the scenery, “I’ve never seen Earth like this. Not many mountains in Iowa. It’s really something.”

With a smirk, he dropped his offered hand and took a few steps up the river, the familiar landscape triggering fond memories. “Sí, it really is. This is not far from my family’s home, so I grew up out here.” Diego Ricardo removed his riding gloves and, after stashing them in a pocket, knelt by the river and dipped his hand in the cool water, idly wondering if the holodeck got the taste right.

Emily watched him carefully, shifting back and forth on her feet once as she kept trying to convince herself to relax. She stepped up to the river, scooping up a stone and flicking it across the water with a good three skips. As she grabbed a second stone she summoned her inner boldness with a small smirk, asking jovially, “So.. tell me about your ideal woman.”

The question caught him off guard, so he smiled and chuckled as he shook the water off his hand, thinking a moment while searching her expression. Occasionally, women he had dated in the past had asked him this question, and he found that their expectations were that his answer would describe them. Emily seemed more genuine in asking than they had, but he was not sure why. Diego Ricardo stood and took a step closer to her before truthfully answering, “She must be interesting to me. Captivating, in such a way that I find myself needing to know more about her. Beauty,” he gestured to emphasize the word, his hand trailing through the air as if it were tracing her form, “is ephemeral. But witty, smart, interesting people tend to always be so.”

Emily’s smile grew, her eyes trailing his hand through the air, “Charming,” she mused with a smirk, grabbing another rock and palming it as she looked over the water.

“Just the truth, and merely my ideal,” he answered with a chuckle. “I answered you, so you must tell me about your ideal man.”

“There is no ideal man,” Emily wagged her eyebrows conspiratorially, offering a cheeky grin as he laughed in agreement. She then shrugged, doubling back with a more serious answer, “I think that’s a good way to put it—someone who holds my interest. Someone funnier than me,” she half-joked, “Someone who looks at me the way my father looks at my mother.”

“If that is anything like the way my father looks at my mother, then we would all be lucky to have someone like that.” He picked up a worn stone and flicked it across the water, netting three hops; it had clearly been a while since he’d skipped rocks. With a wry grin, he added, “After all, they had eight children, so there must have been something to it.”

Emily flicked a stone and completely whiffed it, the rock landing without a skip and tossing two drops of simulated water a foot upward. She watched the ripples in the water for a moment, her smile gone as her thoughts refused to silence themselves. She inhaled sharply as she could sense that he had expected her to laugh, Diego Ricardo could definitely tell something was on her mind, her eyes darting over and meeting his. She pursed her lips, giving a slow nod, “I… should probably tell you something.”

There it was, the mystery that accompanied the spark between them, or at least he suspected that what she wanted to say would shed some light on the subject. That unknown was just as much of a component to him asking her out as the spark was, so he held off on throwing the rock he’d picked up and turned to give her his undivided attention. “By all means, please do.”

Emily took a deep breath, already partially dedicating her attention to blocking out his emotions, or perhaps the rejection she half expected, so she could focus on her words. They were clear—rehearsed, even, but that never made it easier when it came time to take the plunge, “I’m asexual,” she began, and went on without letting him express his confusion too much, “I don’t experience sexual attraction—I don’t want sex, or particularly like it,” she nodded slowly, powering through the nerves, “I do like you, just.. in a different way, I suppose. but…” she waved a hand, having hit the end of her rehearsed words and searching for her intended ending, “That’s an uncrossable bridge for some people. Which is okay–that’s just… that’s,” she couldn’t help a small laugh, “Why you thought I was holding back.”

Her confession was a surprise, but not a shock. He, like many, was tangentially aware of asexuality, but it had certainly not come to mind as a possibility for what this mystery could have been. Regardless of its implications, the admission was clearly a big thing for her, so he knew that his reaction had to be one that would set her at ease. Offering a warm, reassuring smile, Diego Ricardo quietly answered, “Why, Emily, if that is all that you were holding back, then I’m relieved. It felt like you were going to tell me you had some terminal illness.”

Emily’s eyebrows raised and it took her a moment to believe him, but her sixth sense confirmed what her eyes saw, he was being genuine. Relieved, she cracked a small smile, shrugging and managing a quip, “Well, I do plan on dying at some point. I’d hope you do as well,” finally able to relax, it was like her whole demeanor changed. She grabbed another rock and flicked it, sending it across the water with a small, contemplative smile on her face.

“Of course not, I’m a fighter pilot,” he laughed, and she did as well, finally free and genuine. Diego Ricardo needed some time to think about the notion of a relationship without sex, but the idea of dwelling on it now seemed a bit premature, not to mention presumptuous, and the revelation had done nothing to his interest in knowing her better. “As to what that means for us? This is simply a first date, so it is too soon to know what ‘us’ even means. Regardless, it is not something that would ever cause me to judge you negatively. It’s just you, sí?”

Emily’s smile grew sideways into a crooked, goofy smirk. She nodded again, turning to face him, “Exactly. It’s just the sort of thing that’s best to get out of the way, eh.. before it comes up,” she studied him with that glint of intrigue in her eye, fascinated by the way he seemed to think about things so pragmatically. She scrunched her nose, playfully prodding, “I didn’t even say there has to be an ‘us’.”

“Perhaps, perhaps not. Who knows what the future may bring?” His eyes matched the glint in hers before adding, “Besides, you did accept my invitation here. To tell me this about yourself couldn’t be the only reason for that, or at least I suspect as such, not having your Betazoid gifts.”

“Of course not,” Emily giggled, idling back in the direction of the horses, eyeing the village up the path. Obviously prodding, she added, “I’ve also never been to Spain.”

“You still haven’t,” he answered, following her lead back to the horses. “But this will have to do, at least for now.” Diego Ricardo reached up to the saddle horn with one hand and turned to her before placing a foot in the stirrup. Emily was still enigmatic and captivating, and no matter what may come, it was his gentlemanly duty to show her a good time. Flashing a charming smile, he asked, “Would you care to ride with me to the village for a nice dinner, and then if the mood takes us, dancing in tonight’s festival?”

Emily was back on her horse in one smooth motion, having been riding almost as long as she could walk. She grinned widely in response and gave a nod, reflexively reaching up to twist a curly lock of black hair that was flapping into her eyes back behind her ear. She couldn’t help the admiration showing on her face as she watched him step up onto his own horse, “That sounds perfect.”

Diego Ricardo took the reins and looked ahead to the village, then back at Emily, meeting her eyes before saying, “Then let’s see where this road takes us, shall we?” Time for thinking about this would come later, but for now, nothing had changed. He flicked the reins and his feet to urge the horse into a trot, and shortly after, she was alongside.

Without the weight of unspoken words on Emily’s shoulders, the two had an amazing time. She nearly choked on Spanish food she described as ‘way too spicy’, and she only slipped once on the dancefloor. The next day she was caught smiling at nothing two separate times by her lab techs and barely managed to fend off their curiosity.

Trek Logo Divider


  • Ryleigh Grey Ryleigh Grey says:

    Love the writing and the interactions! They’re so cute together!

  •  Alexis Wright says:

    Adorable. “Without the weight of unspoken words” is a particularly pleasing turn of phrase, I think. Between two raven-haired beauties who want very different things from him, Navarro has certainly got a lot to think about.

  • Kuari Kuari says:

    The well thought-out prose, date idea, and emotions affected here made this a joy to read. It feels to be “Part Two” in two separate journeys, both Navarro’s and Acacia’s, which increases interest. The impending conflict is just great storytelling, and what Star Trek is all about, isn’t it?

  • Leave a Reply