...The Look Alike...
By Lynn Taylor
Mark Venture sat silently at the bar looking into his beer. He had just lost another friend which brought up the loss of Trelaina. This time it was to an alien love affair. He had really liked Fenilla . He didn't blame her though, for had he not met and fell head over heels for Trelaina? Now he could do nothing about it she was gone. Fenilla was married happily to Kizro. He was one of the only ones who had not opposed her marrying the alien male. How could he have?
Training had gone smoother since she had worked with the pilots. But now it was quiet. The men were better and they were back off of patrols. He hated it when he was board all came back to him. Especially when he saw people who had someone. The loss was too great.
He smiled slightly when he saw Nova coming in with Derek. He had been very lonely and vastly sad as of late. Just now he hoped they didn't see him so he got up leaving before they could catch him.
"Mark, how are you doing!" came Sandor's voice kindly. Sandor had his share of sadness at times also.
"Oh I am ok Sandor." Mark said as convincingly as he could.
"Yes? I see. Look if you need to talk I am here for you!" Sandor said.
Mark thought a moment and was going to say something. Till the pretty woman came up smiling at them. "Hello Mark!" Eri said sweetly in her musical voice.
"Hello Eri how are you. Sandor I must leave talk to you later," Mark said sadly. Eri's voice was soft and sweet and musical as he felt Trelaina's had been.
He left as quick as he could. "Mark! Mark…wait!" Sandor's voice trailed away.
In a month he would be on board ship again and couldn't avoid the gang. Mark decided to go to Heroes’ Hill to be alone. To be able to think amongst those who never had a chance at love. He felt at times as if his life had stood still from the time he lost Trelaina. He felt more at home with the men who had never had a chance.
This was how he saw the girl. At first from where the moon was shining her blond hair seemed to glow. And she was just standing there looking down at one of the markers. She was dressed in blue and Mark’s heart beat hard in his chest. He had not heard her say anything.
He didn't know how long he had been watching for the glowing of all that blond hair blowing in the light breeze had entranced him. He had seen her place yellow flowers at one of the head stones. He had just been staring not believing his eyes. Was it her?
When she turned he saw the face and he nearly fell. "Trelaina!" Mark gasped.
The woman looked up and then ran off. "Trelaina! No please wait! Trelaina!" Mark said hoarsely.
It was too late and he had been too far away. By the time he had got there she was nowhere to be seen. He choked down the lump in his throat and sighed. "No I must have been dreaming! Wishful thinking." Mark said to himself.
So as to confirm it he went to the markers. But to his grief there were…. flowers yellow ones. They were roses and they were laid at the head stone of Conroy. "Conroy?" Mark asked wondering.
...Natasha and the stranger...
Natasha Yesikov was being briefed on her newest mission. She was to be the ambassador for Alien affairs. It had taken the Star Force several years to pick her. For they had wanted a male. But Natasha was a good debater and negotiator.
"You will get orders in a few weeks." the president said.
"Yes sir!" She said smiling brightly at him.
Her every wish had been for this. Natasha decided to go to Hero's hill to see the man responsible for her wanting to see the other species.
She missed Conroy. She had hopes he was going to ask her to marry him but his life had been cut short. Even now the Comet Empire was still being discussed. And it made her so very sad. And to her friend and cousin to Conroy, Fenilla was now gone also. She had been studying when she heard and had not got the whole story.
Natasha went to Hero's hill after changing into the blue Conroy always said she looked best in. She walked slowly and was deciding what she wanted to say. She had brought the yellow roses that meant goodbye. She had to move on it was too painful waiting for them to tell her that he was not really dead.
She knew they would never tell her so. She would however never settle for anyone less than what Conroy was. If he didn't come up to the fine qualities of Conroy they just wouldn't do.
As she walked up to the marker she was crying. "Conroy I am here. I have come to say goodbye. I am going into space like you. I made it. I am Ambassador of alien affairs." Natasha said.
She had not heard the man come up for he was still a ways off. She just stood there for a moment then placed the flowers in front of his stone. "Goodbye my dearest Conroy." she said.
As she turned, the moon’s light lit her face and she saw a man standing staring at her. He started yelling and running toward her. Natasha was in no want to meet anyone of his crew that had survived just now. It made his loss all that more painful so she ran. She headed over the ridge when she slipped and went over the ridge landing in the bushes.
Natasha felt stupid and just sat there hoping he didn't see her. He didn't for she had heard him calling someone. She didn't make out what he was calling but she did know he was looking for someone other than her. So she sat waiting for the embarrassment to pass and all to get quiet.
Limping to her car and taking off her broken shoe she grimaced. "Why couldn't I have been born graceful?" She cried for this was typical for her.
All the way home she moaned the loss of Conroy and Fenilla her friend. When she got home she giggled at her appearance in the mirror. "How do I get myself into these things!" she said pulling twigs and leaves out of her hair. And tossing her high heels into the trash…while thinking: stick to moderate heels… no more high heels.
She had always been clumsy and this in part had been how she met Conroy. She had ran into him with her coffee and jelly filled donut. The memory of how she had tried to wipe it off of him only was making the stain worse.
He had laughed about it and in fact he had even kissed her when she kept apologizing. Conroy had been a cadet and she had been in college. It was made worse for Natasha when she saw Fenilla laughing about the looks of his uniform. They had been constant companions after this when he was on Earth. And she had become good friends with Fenilla.
Both her and Fenilla had taken the loss of Conroy hard. Natasha cried again thinking about them both and wondered if she would ever really get over losing him that way.
The next day she would go back to the Earth force headquarters and start preparing for her first big mission. Unfortunately she would have to look up information about the Argo and her crew. This would bring up the loss again. Natasha's determination was to do her job the best she could.
Mark had sat down at the markers looking down the row. His mind couldn't quite get it all in perspective. "It was Trelaina wasn't it?"
"How come she visited Conroy's grave?" he said to
"No my mind was playing tricks. It had to be someone else visiting Conroy and I imagined it was her." Mark said.
"Her who?"Derek’s voice intoned behind him.
"Ah Derek! No one. Just talking to myself." Mark said standing up smiling even though it wasn't in earnest.
"Come on you can tell me." Derek said.
"I saw a girl visiting Conroy and I thought I knew her that is all." Mark said evading the subject. He didn't want a psychiatric evaluation just now for it would knock him out of going back on the Argo. At least that is what he feared.
"A girl friend of yours?" Derek asked hitting his shoulder.
"Me! I don't have a girlfriend. You know that!" Mark said annoyed.
"Hay Mark I was just teasing. Are you ok?" Derek asked.
"Yes I am fine. So when are you and Nova going to get married?" Mark asked knowing Derek would change the subject himself now.
"We have no definite plans. Any ways did you hear we are to be getting an on-board Ambassador this next run?" Derek asked lightly.
"An Ambassador? Wow how is that supposed to work?" Mark said startled.
"Yep our very own negotiator between us and the Aliens." Derek said ruefully.
"So what is the name of this Person?" Mark asked curiously.
"Ambassador of Alien affairs Ambassador Yesikov." Derek said smiling.
"Is that Russian?" Mark asked startled.
"I believe so. If not that, then Polish." Derek said grinning.
"I wouldn't say that for fear some big hairy Russian hears you." Mark said laughing as he turned to leave.
"Hay you going so soon? Nova will be here in a moment and she would love to see you." Derek said.
"You two need to be alone to talk about your wedding plans," Mark said smirking as Nova came up behind the unsuspecting Derek.
"Thanks…Mark!" Nova said smiling sweetly as Derek jumped with a start.
Mark ran off to his motor cycle grinning. He had evaded that one. That night Mark had dreamed about Trelaina again. Her delicate voice musically chiming in his ears. Her tiny hand holding his. The alarm chime was ringing and he was holding his own hand waking him before he wanted to wake.
He didn't want to wake up he wanted to be with Trelaina again. Why does it have to be this way? he sighed sadly.
He decided to go for a walk to straighten out his mind. He went to hero's hill again. The flowers were still there and he looked at them. "No it wasn't a dream!” He started walking in the direction the girl had run off to. When he saw the grounds keeper evening out the dirt.
"I don't know who it was but she must have hit the bush running. I had to trim 6 broken branches….," he said, looking up seeing Mark.
"May I help you sir?" the other grounds keeper asked.
"No! Well may be? Was there an accident here last night?" Mark asked.
"Yes it looks like someone fell from where you are standing to the bushes here." the first one said bundling up the down branches.
"She could have got hurt save the bushes cushioned her fall." the second said.
"You say her? Why?" Mark asked curiously.
"She left behind a heel from her shoe. No man wears stilettos," the grounds keeper said.
Mark saw the spiked heal that the man pulled out of his pocket. "Very logical!. Keep up the good work men." Mark said walking off thinking.
No wonder she seemed to have disappeared. He wondered if she was hurt. Must not have been for she had walked away. Even he could see the foot prints leading to the parking lot. One foot had a complete print and the other had the heal missing. He laughed a little at it.
It was Trelaina he had been sure of it when he had seen her face in the moonlight and the way her hair glowed in it.
Mark decided to go to see his parents. On the way he was still thinking on last night seeing her. When in front of him again he saw a blond woman. She was small and delicate and he wondered but when this woman turned around her face was all wrong. Would it be like this forever? Would every woman look like Trelaina to him?
Three times so far that day he had seen a blond and each were not his Trelaina. So when the woman ran into him dropping her papers he just sighed. And started helping her pickup her things.
"Oh I am sorry! I was in a hurry. Late again as always!” She said still looking down.
"It is alright I am glad you didn't hurt yourself." Mark said looking at her long blond hair that hid her face.
"That is sweet of you., the Alto voice said.
"Here you go I hope I got them all for you." Mark said handing her the papers he had chased down.
"Oh Thanks! Everyone who knows me can tell you I am this way all the time." She said looking up.
Mark was shocked and blinked three times. The color drained from his face and he gasp. Her watch chimed and she stood abruptly running off again. "Thanks again sir." She sang loudly and sweetly.
He just stood there wordless. Several minutes passed before he said it. "Trelaina!" His heart was beating hard and his head was spinning. He knew that face that hair and the tiny hands that had taken the papers from his.
It was her save the voice was not as high pitched as Trelaina. No it was her it had to be but why didn't she know him.
"Mark…are you ok!?" Sandor's voice broke his thoughts with a start.
"I, I saw her! It was Trelaina!" Mark said still out of it.
"Where Mark? Are you alright?" Sandor asked putting his hand on Marks shoulder.
"Here a minute ago I helped her pick up papers. And at Hero's hill last night." Mark said.
"Come with me and tell me about it." Sandor said walking Mark to his car.
Mark was not with him in mind only in body. He was not aware of much save his own thoughts.
"I tell you Sandor, it was her." Mark said.
"You saw her at hero's hill. What was she doing on hero's hill?" Sandor asked kindly.
"She put flowers on Conroy's marker. I didn't get to talk to her for she ran off." Mark said.
"Just now what did you talk to her about?" Sandor asked.
"I didn't really! I helped her pick up her papers. I didn't see her face till she took them from my hand thanking me." Mark said.
"You have been missing her a lot lately haven't you? That is why you evaded Derek and Nova at the Bar….and why when my wife came up, you left so abruptly." Sandor said knowingly.
"Yes. It is so hard for me sometimes when I see those who have the ones they love with them." Mark said honestly for around Sandor he usually could speak very earnestly.
"I understand. I thought the girl I loved was dead after saving me so many years ago. As you know it has been just over two years now that I have known she lived and married her. All that time thinking I could never love anyone because the girl I did love died." Sandor said.
"Yes but Sandor your girl who saved you is the girl you married she didn't die." Mark said sadly.
"Yes but I had fallen in love with her thinking she was someone I didn't know. I was ready and moving on with my life cause it had been a while. I suppose what I am saying is you are young and someday you will find someone to warm your heart again." Sandor said.
"I am not sure I want to move on just yet." Mark said.
"I understand. I didn't want to fall in love the second time. I just did. Just don't let it get to you. Don't let it affect your work, "Sandor said.
"Like you your memory of Eri the girl who saved you made you stronger?" Mark said uncertain.
"Yes! Yes it did. You will be fine." Sandor said.
He pulled up to the Earth force building. "You want to come in or stay here? I have to get some paper work so I can install new equipment in the Argo." Sandor said.
"I will wait I need to think." Mark said.
He watched Sandor walking into the building. He was just looking out the window when he saw a girl with blond hair again. His Gaze was more intent and he felt his heart leap.
He cried, "Trelaina! Is that you? Trelaina! Please wait
The girl at first had smiled but when he called her name she ran off. Mark went running and only stopped when he found Sandor following him. "Mark, are you all right?" Sandor said.
"I thought I saw her again. Here! Did you see her I was right behind her? Mark said looking up lost.
"No Mark I saw nothing. Come…let’s talk!" Sandor said taking him back to the car.
"Mark! I heard people talking about a man running wild through the building. It wasn't till they said you were calling for Trelaina that I knew it was you. No one saw the girl." Sandor said.
"It can't be I saw her she was here!" Mark said he was ready to cry.
"Come! I will take you to my home. Maybe you can stay overnight. Eri will make up a guest bed. You haven't slept much have you?" Sandor asked.
"I have slept but I dream about Trelaina!" Mark said giving up.
"Look I won't tell anyone. You need to talk to someone. I am here and able to talk to you. I of all people can understand." Sandor said.
"Did you know you would make a great counselor?" Mark teased.
"So I have been told." Sandor laughed.
...Natasha and Trelaina...
Natasha had liked the cute guy who helped her pick up her papers. She had even liked the look he gave her. Having no time to tell him what her name had been a bummer.
But seeing he wore a Star Force uniform she knew she could find him again. She had just got there and was heading to where she was to look up information on some details for her first mission. She saw the cute guy again. She headed toward him till she heard him call her another woman's name.
After escaping down a hall she stood waiting for him to pass. "So that is how it is. Trelaina…I read about her. She was a queen of her planet. That would make him! Mark Venture! Figures! He thought I was his girl. And no wonder he looked familiar." Natasha thought.
As she walked in to the room where her desk sat she saw the general coming. "Sir, may I ask a question?" Natasha asked.
"Anything, Madam Ambassador!" He said grinning when she looked up startled.
"Madam! Ohh that makes me sound old." Natasha said looking at him from under her thick eyelashes.
"Get used to it. Now what is your question?" he said laughing.
"What did Trelaina of Telezart look like? I heard her talked about but never described." Natasha asked.
"Hum well she was described as delicate and short with very long blond hair. It is in the reports you have to read. Oh yes there is one recording of her appearance on record but it wasn't very good. We owe her and Starsha a lot." The general said.
"Yes we do sir." Natasha said smiling at him.
Natasha frowned as he left. She was short and dainty with delicate features. And a blond. How could she compare to the pretty queen who gave her life to save Earth? No she decided she had to for hers and Ventures good avoid him. Rebound romances were always the worst.
At least that is what she had always been told. If she didn't ever meet up with him then she wouldn't have to deal with those feelings.
But She found him around allot. When she least expected it she would see him and he would come running yelling Trelaina. Natasha was walking into the Space force building when she heard it again but this time the voice wasn't Mark Ventures.
She looked up to see Captain Wildstar and the man known as Sandor standing mouth opened. It annoyed her that they too called her Trelaina.
So she headed over to talk to them. She was so determined that she didn't see the wet spot from where the floor had just been mopped. She went sprawling and sat up embarrassed when a tan hand was extended to her. "Thanks, It was more embarrassing then painful." She said looking up into Sandor's face.
"My, she does look like her." Derek Wildstar said.
"That is just what I wanted to find out. Do I really look just like Trelaina? Or do I just have some features like her?" Natasha asked.
"You my dear girl are like a identical twin. You are the same height and delicate featured. You are as beautiful as her also. Only one thing gives it away that you are not her." Sandor said trying to be diplomatic about it.
"I am a klutz and Trelaina was graceful! Right?" Natasha said grinning awkwardly.
"Yes." Sandor said shyly.
"Poor Venture he has seen me who knows how many times now. Thanks Sandor. Hello there, Captain Wildstar." Natasha said.
"Well my lady you have us at a disadvantage. What is your name you seem to know us?" Derek said.
"Who in their right mind doesn't know you two? My name is Natasha." she said smiling sweetly.
"Come Natasha; you are needed in the conference room." a young man came up saying.
"Be right there. See you again someday gentlemen." Natasha said.
Natasha left not knowing the up-roar she left in her wake. For Sandor and Derek were still watching her walking off.
"Wow we should tell Mark she works here?" Derek said.
"I am not sure! She keeps running from him. I think I will ask her to come join us at the bar soon before we leave so we can get to know about her. If she works here she will see him more and more." Sandor said.
"Can you imagine two women who look that much alike!" Derek said thinking of how Starsha had thought Nova at first was her sister.
Derek had left and Sandor waited after filing the papers about the changes he had done to the Argo. He wanted to meet this girl and find out who she was. He now knew she was aware of Mark's thoughts and his feelings for Trelaina.
"Ah, Mr. Sandor! You are still here!" Natasha said coming up behind him.
"Yes I was wanting to talk to you. Mark had been seeing Trelaina around a lot lately. It has been you hasn't it?" Sandor asked.
"Yes! He always calls me Trelaina when he sees me. When I realized who he was and who she was I avoided him. He doesn't need to be upset by me." Natasha said.
"Can I interest you in a drink so you can tell me about yourself? We thought Mark was seeing things till today. It fascinates me that you look so much like Trelaina." Sandor said.
"Most certainly. I need to know about all the species you met in space for my job at the bureau of Alien affairs." Natasha said.
"So that is where you work. I was wondering? No wonder Mark saw you here. It isn't the first place he saw you is it." Sandor asked as they walked to his car.
"No I think the first time was at Hero's hill was I went to see Conroy. I had to tell him that I got the job I wanted and it was all due to his encouragement." Natasha said.
"Ah yes Mark said you put flowers on Conroy's stone. He said you ran off. So your first name is Natasha what is your last." Sandor asked curiously.
"I am Natasha Yesikov. I was a very good friend to Conroy. It is too bad he is gone along with Fenilla his cousin. They would have laughed if he had seen what had happened after I ran off. He always teased when I did something clumsy." Natasha said.
"Yesikov! You are related to the Ambassador then?" Sandor asked.
Natasha laughed and then looked away. "Yes I am."
When they got to the bar they talked at length about her college years and how she had met Conroy. Sandor corrected her when he realized she thought Fenilla was dead. How now she was married to a Alien male and living happily on a planet far away happily. And how now she was going to be doing things in outer space. "Maybe I will see her again at least." Natasha had said.
How to when she saw Mark the first time she thought he was cute. And after that he only called her Trelaina and she figured he didn't need that kind of stress.
"You know he will still keep looking for you and call you Trelaina. It is affecting his mind thinking he is seeing her all the time." Sandor said.
"I suppose you are right. I can meet him and let him see I am not his sweet heart. But prove to him that he is sane." Natasha said.
She didn't know if she would regret this decision but she would meet him to help him. "It is very good he has a friend like you." Natasha said just before leaving.
When Sandor called Mark he had just got up and was preparing for his leaving on the Argo. "Really you have someone you want me to meet? A girl? Sandor! You know I don't want to meet a new girl." Mark had said.
"Mark, this will make you feel better. You are not seeing things. You will like her she is very nice." Sandor said.
Mark had been excited after this conversation. Sandor had found the girl he had been seeing everywhere? He was at the restaurant before it was time. Sandor had showed up looking particularly happy.
And when the girl got out of Sandor's car with Eri he didn't see Eri at all. He just stared and walked up to her his eyes tracing her face. "You are my Trelaina! Tell me it is true." Mark said.
"No Mark I am not your Trelaina. I am Natasha Yesikov. When you called me that I felt it would be too hard on you to meet me. But Sandor told me you and they thought you were imagining you saw Trelaina! I had to let you know I was a real girl and not your girl." Natasha said softly touching his cheek.
Artwork: “Trelaina and Natasha” © 2011 by Lynn Taylor.
All Rights Reserved.
Mark had looked down sadly and then away from her. "It is not fair. You look just like her! Down to your little hands and those pretty eyes!" Mark said.
Natasha frowned. "You talk about not fair! I met you when you helped me with my paper work that I lost. I thought you were cute. I thought I could really like you. But the only reason you looked at me was you thought I was Trelaina! No matter how much I could like you. You wouldn't have looked twice at me cause you only want Trelaina." Natasha said.
"I know I am sorry. It is just how I feel. I lost her and miss her." Mark said.
"You don't hold the exclusive rights to missing someone who is dead. I miss Conroy daily." Natasha said.
Mark looked away again. What had this girl been to Conroy? "So you were the one who visited Conroy's grave?" Mark asked looking at her intently.
"I suppose Conroy never talked about me much to you men. The only thing I can say is I met him when I was in college. He was sweet to me even though I spilled my coffee on him." Natasha said with soft eyes remembering that day.
"The grounds keeper has your heel." Mark said looking at her smiling awkwardly.
"Oh great! That figures! Oh well the shoes are long gone now." Natasha said feeling sad till she thought of what Conroy would have said.
"Just another day in the life of Nat." Natasha said smiling.
"You are Nat?" Sandor said smiling.
"Oh my so he did tell everyone about me?" Natasha said embarrassed.
"No it is a term he used when someone fell or hit their head. We thought Nat was a guy he knew." Mark said grinning oddly.
"Great I am famous on the Argo as a clumsy guy! That was his cousins fault she started that saying on me." Natasha said sadly.
They walked into the restaurant Natasha was still thinking on how Conroy teased her. She was not paying attention when the swinging door hit her in the forehead knocking her backward. Mark caught her and looked shocked down into her face.
"Sorry! I wasn't looking where I was going." Natasha said blushing for embarrassment.
She was helped to stand and she looked down. "You know this was a bad idea! I should go home." Natasha said sadly.
"No I won't hear of it. You simply must tell us about yourself." Eri said smiling kindly at her.
Mark was just staring with the oddest look on his face. "She is so different than Trelaina! But looks so much like her. How can two women who look so much the same be so very different?" Mark said to himself.
The restaurant had a band and dance floor. And Natasha looked at it as if in memory. She turned to see Eri looking at her kindly. "You like to dance?" Eri said.
"Yeah. But I haven't in a very long time." Natasha said.
"But how can you dance?" Mark said shocked knowing that every time he had seen Natasha now she was stumbling and or getting up from a fall.
Natasha laughed and looked at him. "Wouldn't you like to know buster." Natasha said. She remembered how Conroy would pick her up to the point her feet never touched the floor and swang her around. It had been so fun.
Natasha had been looking down, only to realize everyone was very quiet. She noticed that all were looking at what she was doing. For where her cup had sweated she had written Conroy's name and drawn little hearts around it.
Mark had a particularly odd look on his face so Natasha wiped the marks off the table and stood up. "I have to go I am so sorry I can't stay and enjoy the dinner. It has been fun." Natasha said running out nearly taking a header into a waiter.
Mark had just sat sadly watching her leave as Sandor urged on by Eri followed her. "You two knew she loved Conroy?" Mark asked.
"Not for certain. We had our suspicions. But that was not the point of this dinner. It was to show you she is not Trelaina come to life. But you were seeing a real girl who looked like her and it wasn't your imagination. She is a sweet special girl all on her own. She is not the girl who loved you and saved your life. She is a nice girl and is lonely like you." Eri said.
"Yes I see. She is nice. It is a letdown though thinking she isn't Trelaina." Mark said.
"Don't you think she felt that? She picked up your disappointment in her?" Sandor said coming back alone.
"She isn't coming back?" Mark asked.
"No! She said she had something else to do." Sandor said.
Mark didn't stay for dinner ether he left walking home thinking. He wanted to make it up to the girl but he had to clear his head before he saw her again.
Natasha had went home for all the remembering just made her feel sad again. She had to think again about how Conroy had promised her he would ask her a question when he saw her next. They had waited to be intimate till after he would marry her so it would be special when he came back. How he had left abruptly and secretively.
He had not been able to keep that promise. He was gone and she sat sadly looking at pictures of him. Fenilla had helped her find out about him as to just what had happened. He had saved Sandor’s and Derek Wildstar's lives.
So the next morning she was surprised and pleased that she had an assignment waiting for her. "Leave In three hours! That is great! To where?" Natasha asked.
"You are to go to Galman. Emperor Desslok is getting married. He has invited a diplomat and the crew of the Argo to the wedding. Take these orders and the presents that are being sent to the Argo as we speak. Make a good impression. You have only three hours till you leave." the general said.
"The Argo? Is there no other ship going?" Natasha asked for she had reservations on seeing Mark again.
"No this is the only one Desslok has authorized. Aren't you serious about being an Ambassador?" the general asked.
"Yes I am. There is no problem." Natasha said looking brighter. Maybe they will be too busy for Mark to even think much about it.
When Natasha showed up on the docks the shipment of gifts were already loaded. She looked up seeing the crew busy at work and smiled.
"Natasha! Good to see you are you doing ok?" Sandor's voice rang out behind her.
"Ah, Sandor! Yes I am going with you! You will have to tell me what Desslok is like." Natasha said.
"You are going with us?" Sandor asked puzzled.
"Yes sir Ambassador Natasha Yesikov at your service sir." Natasha sang smiling at his look and Eri's.
Eri who had come to see Sandor off smiled brightly. "Oh so that is how you are related to the Ambassador? You are the Ambassador!" Eri giggled musically.
Nova walked up to them smiling. "So Eri are you going also?" Nova asked.
"No I was not approved to go. Since I am going to have a baby they didn't want to push it. So I came to see Stephen off." Eri said squeezing Sandor's hand.
"Nova Forrester! It is good to meet you. I am Ambassador Natasha Yesikov. I am going with you." Natasha said.
"You’re Yesikov? I thought you would be a big Russian male." Nova laughed.
"Indeed, you probably pictured a big Red headed, hairy man right! That describes my father. Fortunately I took after my mother!" Natasha said brightly.
"Well I guess I will take you aboard to go to your rooms." Nova said smiling happily.
As they left the little group Natasha couldn't help but wonder. Sandor looked at her with a look of worry on his face.
She was off to her first mission or assignment. She would do the best she could and she smiled for already she knew a lot of the crew. As she went aboard she kept hearing them whisper about Trelaina knowing that some of them had met her. Misgivings hit her and she frowned.
Mark had been doing last minute checks on the wave motion engine when he saw Sandor come on the bridge looking worried.
"Captain Wildstar the ambassador is here. I need to talk to you a moment." Sandor said.
"Ok just wait." Derek said picking up the intercom unit. "Ambassador Yesikov to the bridge, please." Derek said then turning to Sandor.
"She is Natasha Yesikov. She is the girl that looks like Trelaina of Telezart." Sandor had whispered.
"She! The ambassador is a female? You mean the one we saw at Earth Defense Forces headquarters? The one who fell on the floor?" Derek said stunned and not very quietly.
"Natasha is here?" Mark said looking up shocked.
"Ambassador Natasha Yesikov, reporting for duty!" Natasha said walking forward extending her hand.
Everyone who had not seen Natasha before looked at her now with full interest. For those of the crew the bridge crew knew Trelaina the most and they gasped.
"Natasha…good to see you. How are you doing?" Mark said curiously.
"I am fine. So Captain Wildstar are we ready to go? Just how long before takeoff?" Natasha asked.
"In 15 minutes Ambassador. Right on time." Derek said proudly.
Excellent, then. I will take my leave and go to my room," Natasha said smiling at them all.
Mark watched her leave and he was impressed for she had done that flawlessly. Till she got to the elevator door…her heel got stuck in the grating and she fell head first onto the floor.
Mark found himself running up and helping her up. He further found himself dislodging the shoe from the grate. "Maybe you need chunkier heels." Mark offered a suggestion.
"Point me to the nearest space shoe store and we are in business," Natasha said laughing.
Mark smiled for the first time earnestly at this and Sandor as well as Derek were pleased. "Mark see her to her quarters will you then bring one of her shoes to Sandor? He can use the Dynamic-do-all to make her some with more appropriate heels? For most of the ship has those grates all over the ship!" Derek said mildly.
"Hum…this ought to be interesting." Natasha said curiously.
Mark walked her to her room and was thinking the same thing. "Did you look up on warping and what you needed to do?" Mark asked.
"No but Conroy had told me allot about it. So where do I sit?" Natasha asked.
Mark showed her the seat and the straps and how to strap into it. "Ah thanks Venture I appreciate it. May I ask something?" Natasha asked not looking up.
"Sure! But first call me Mark." Mark said.
"Oh! Ok well Mark. How well did you know Conroy? Did he really not tell anyone about me?" Natasha asked.
"We were in Training together with Wildstar. He was very private. I think you were a shock and surprise to Even Derek. I mean he had that saying about, Day in the life of Nat, but we assumed it was a buddy. Like the day he came in with coffee and jelly donut on his cadet’s uniform. He said it was a day in the life of Nat." Mark said looking at her.
"Oh that was! That was the day he met me. Or I met him. I tried to clean it off but it only made it worse. He never told me did he get in trouble for it?" Natasha said smiling wryly.
"Oooh…yeah! He got a demerit for it. But he was impeccable from that day onward." Mark laughed.
"Thanks again Venture! I mean Mark. I will be fine. Here are my shoes that Sandor needs," Natasha said.
Mark left and headed towards the bridge again. He had no idea what to think. It was hard to talk to her. For one thing she had to ask about Conroy again. And even though he knew she wasn't his Trelaina he was affected when she had asked about him. Like at the restaurant he had felt a twinge of jealousy when Natasha wrote Conroy on the table with all the little hearts around it.
Mark knew he had no right and he knew she didn't know him much. But it had affected him. Poor Conroy no wonder he didn't say anything when Trelaina came aboard looking like his girl. How had Conroy felt when Trelaina had returned Mark’s feelings?
He looked down at the tiny shoes he held in his hands…They’re no bigger than a little girl’s he thought. The bridge door opened and he went into it. He heard part of a conversation he had wished he had not.
"So she was Conroy's girlfriend?" Derek asked.
"Yes! Conroy and Fenilla were very close to her." Sandor said.
"You are mistaken it was more than just boyfriend and girlfriend. Conroy was going to marry her." Nova said.
"I met her this morning and after finding her name was Natasha I found the envelope that was in his effects. One was marked Natasha. In it was a ring. And notes on how he was going to propose to her." Nova said.
"That explains a lot of things." Sandor said. He was thinking the same thing as Mark. The writing on the table with little hearts around his name.
"Did you give it to her yet? If not maybe we shouldn't till after the wedding." Derek asked.
Mark walked to his station and sat sadly. He had not seen Sandor's look of concern for him.
"Venture if it is too hard for you. I will have others deal with The Ambassador." Derek said kindly.
Mark looked up and then out the front window. "It is ok. I know she is not Trelaina!" Mark said.
Mark under stood Natasha now! She was in mourning for Conroy. She was as sad as he was over Trelaina. He liked her fun personality, and felt for her sadness. Only one thing puzzled him and that was her statement when he first met her as Natasha. "No matter how much I could like you. You wouldn't have looked twice at me because you only want Trelaina." He didn't know what to think.
"I don't think you should hide it from her. She is a loving girl and I don't think it will affect her performance." Mark said.
"Maybe Mark is right. If you want Captain, I will give it to her." Sandor said.
He found even though she wasn't Trelaina and her personality was different…very different. He still liked her. Other things were vastly different too. And though both women were very beautiful, Natasha was the most accident prone person he had ever known. It would take three warps and two days to get to The Galman Empire and Mark began to worry for he would see her run into things and or take a tumble. He just had to protect her.
"How is she supposed to be an Ambassador? Doesn't that involve social events? Will there be dancing at the wedding for Desslok?" Mark said.
"I imagine so. But she said she loved to dance." Sandor said unworried.
"How? She has two left feet? Look at her!" Mark said as they watched her walking into the cafeteria talking to Nova and running into a man with a tray and the doorway in succession.
After Sandor saw this he too became worried. They watched Nova and Natasha come over to sit down. "Did you like that dress the best? Someone told me I looked best in cornflower blue. So allot of my clothes are that color." Natasha said.
"The purple one is very lovely on you also," Nova said smiling at them all.
"You want to try it on? I can see if it would fit." Natasha said.
Mark looked down for he had been imagining just what she would look like in cornflower blue. And then purple. "Are they dancing dresses?" Mark asked.
"Oh yes some of the finest lace and silk dresses I have ever seen," Nova said brightly.
Natasha looked at Mark narrowing her eyes then burst into laughter. "Oh so you don't believe I can dance?" Natasha said giggling.
"Precisely!" Mark said smiling back.
"Well you are right. Conroy helped me." Natasha said.
"How?!" Mark asked.
"I don't think I will tell you." Natasha said laughing again.
Natasha leaned over and told Nova and she smiled brightly giggling. "Oh that is so sweet." Nova said.
"How you going to dance if Desslok asks you?" Mark asked.
Natasha looked at Nova and frowned. "Sure can't dance like that with him! He is the groom! I am not sure I would dance that way with anyone else." Natasha said startled. Her face took on a very sad look and she frowned starting to tear up.
"Mark!" Nova admonished him.
"I am sorry Natasha I want to help you. I saw you walk into the door. Did Conroy guide you as you danced?" Mark said worried.
"Mark!" Nova said again.
"No! He picked me up hugging me." Natasha said again. She stood up looking down at her food then ran out.
"Mark,how could you? She is still sad over Conroy! You of all people should understand!" Nova snapped.
"Mark do come with me we will go see her." Sandor said.
"I do understand Nova. I just wanted her to be able to do the best she can." Mark said following Sandor.
Mark followed Sandor, feeling bad for what he had said but not knowing what good it would do to have him with.
"I was going to give her the envelope just then but perhaps it would be better to give it to her at her room," Sandor said.
"I am sure you are right. Yesterday she asked if Conroy had told any of us about her? I think she is afraid he was embarrassed about her. I don't think it is true. I think he didn't want anyone to see her for fear they might want to steal her away." Mark said.
"Spoken like a man who has felt that way before." Sandor said knowingly.
"It is true. I didn't want even Homer to take messages from Trelaina. I was afraid if anyone talked to her save me she would like them better." Mark said.
"You know if you let the girl decide she would have chosen you anyway don't you think?" Sandor said.
They got to the door and Sandor knocked. Natasha came to the door; she had been crying.
"Natasha you left before I could talk to you. We found something amongst Conroy's effects we had not known what to do with till you came aboard. May we come in and talk." Sandor asked kindly.
"Of course. I am sorry I left so abruptly. Every time I think about dancing I can’t help missing Conroy so dreadfully." Natasha said.
"I know how you feel I am so sorry I said anything." Mark said looking down.
"Mark. It wasn't your fault. I had never ever thought of dancing with anyone like that other than him. This could be disastrous." Natasha said.
"This is what we found." Sandor said handing her the envelope.
Natasha opened it up and looked pleased but also very surprised. "I thought that was what he was going to ask. But was unsure when no one knew about me at all." Natasha said.
"I think you didn't want anyone to take you away from him. So he didn't tell us. I was that way about Trelaina." Mark said.
Natasha put the ring on the table and smiled. "Mark if a girl liked you she wouldn't be so easily swayed." Natasha said kindly touching his hand.
"Aren't you going to put it on?" Mark asked.
"No I would see it and not be able to do my job. Anyway I would like you to place it on hero's hill on his stone." Natasha said sadly.
"You won't put it there yourself?" Sandor asked shocked.
"Since my job is out here and since I may not be back to Earth anytime soon. I am relying on you to do it for me. He knew I loved him. I know he loved me. I am happy. See to it that this is put on his stone." Natasha said writing down something on a card.
"Won't be returning soon? You aren't going back to Earth?" Mark said jumping up.
"Mark!" Sandor said calmly.
He handed Mark the card. It read…"My Beloved Conroy" Natasha Yesikov!"
"I lost him. I must move on with my life or it will destroy me. I want to be happy and to enjoy my life instead of grieving forever." Natasha said.
"By leaving your home!? By erasing him from your memory?" Mark said harshly.
"I am not erasing anything. Is he there for me to go home to? I will always remember the good times and memories. But I don't want to be reminded every day that he is gone. You have no reason for me to not seek a permanent position on another planet. Ambassador to Earth." Natasha said.
"That is a bit drastic, isn't it?" Mark said again.
"Then give me a good reason to stay Mark! I have no reason to stay. I have no one there who loves me. So you give me a good reason if you can. If you keep up your grieving you are going to be alone sad and bitter for the rest of your life. I don't want to be that way myself." Natasha said.
"Mark, stop it! Everyone grieve in different ways!" Sandor said.
"Like you throwing yourself into knowledge and work?" Mark said looking at Sandor hard.
"Exactly! I am doing the same thing. Till I can find happiness again. Sandor you will do this for me won't you?" Natasha said.
"Yes I will How about if I have this set recessed into the head stone?" Sandor asked holding the ring up.
"That would be marvelous. Thanks Sandor. I will keep it with me till you head home." Natasha said as he handed it to her.
Mark just stood there frowning. Natasha looked at him and sighed.
"Thanks for bringing it to me Mark, Sandor." Natasha said again.
When he and Sandor left, Sandor looked at him curiously. "For a man who has suffered the same feelings you are surprisingly, not very understanding." Sandor said.
"I do understand! I wouldn't want my girl to not even try on my ring if I died leaving her behind." Mark said.
"She was showing consideration for your feelings. Knowing you see her as Trelaina she didn't want you to feel awkward if she put the ring on. Trust me she will try it on and she will cry." Sandor said.
"My feelings? I don't see her as Trelaina really I don't. They are totally different. Anyways I know she cries over Conroy. I like her and want her to be happy." Mark said unconvincingly.
"If you like her as good as you say then give her a reason to go back home." Sandor said.
It had hit her during the trip to Galman. Natasha had never imagined that she would find anyone she could love as much as she had Conroy. While they were so different in personality and out looks she loved them.
After Conroy had died she thought no one could have awoke her heart. It wasn't so much what he said. It was his manner. He was strong, loyal and sweet. He seemed to be worried about her genuinely.
The only thing was he couldn't see her as Natasha. He seemed to want to be around her. But if she said anything it would eventually make its way around to Conroy or Trelaina.
Natasha was determined to do her best. And if Desslok liked her, she was considering asking him if she could have a place on his planet. As a permanent human Ambassador.
It had been for just this reason that she had brought special gifts from her personally. For the Bride Lady Demeia, an Amber egg necklace on a gold chain from her Mother Russia. And for Desslok, the groom, a bottle of the best Vodka from her home town in Russia. There was a pallet of items from Earth’s residents themselves but hers were separate and special.
Mark started doing things for her to and her heart wanted him to at least once see her for herself. But she felt he wouldn't. But he would do everything he could to make her safe. Once when she slipped he had grabbed her around the waist and pulled her up. Natasha couldn't help it she blushed for it reminded her of Dancing with Conroy. Marks face had turned red to and she heard Sandor laugh.
Things got more mixed up in her mind when they got to Galman. Desslok had sent his cars and she had dressed in one of her special dresses. She found Mark right next to her holding his arm for her to take.
"Uneven ground hold on tight," He said putting his opposite hand over her little one that was holding onto his arm sleeve.
"Thanks Mark. I was afraid of something like this." Natasha said.
Mark had looked at her and his face had taken on a very cute blush. Natasha liked how he was always there when ever it looked rough.
...Desslok and the Ambassador...
Desslok had been pleased when Wildstar had sent a message that they were to come to his wedding. He grinned for Talan was talking to the three girls who had taken to him. Each hoping that they may soon be Talan's wife.
"Talan, have they arrived yet?" Desslok asked.
"Yes My Lord. In fact they said that a very special emissary has come with them to meet you. An ambassador Yesikov." Talan said.
"Yesikov I like that name! Sort of rolls off the tongue nicely, " Desslok said.
"Make sure that the first car has Wildstar and Nova and the Ambassador," Desslok said.
Desslok waited on the balcony watching when the cars started showing up. He was just going to wait on the balcony for them to be escorted up. That was till the blond woman was helped out of the car. She was dressed in a pink lacy dress with her hair put up on her head in an appealing style. He knew her on sight.
"It is Trelaina! She had come with them?" Desslok said watching.
He went running making all who saw him stunned. Talan followed him thinking something was amiss. But as soon as they got out to the entryway where the group had progressed to, Talan saw Desslok fall to his knees and he to saw her and did so.
"Queen Trelaina! It is an honor." Desslok said.
"Emperor Desslok, please! I am not Trelaina. I am Ambassador of Earth, Natasha Yesikov." Natasha said…while blushing.
Desslok stood and eyed her curiously. "No but you are! There can't be two women like Trelaina. Do you have her powers, too?" Desslok said.
"I am sorry I should have warned you. She is a human from an area on Earth called Russia." Wildstar said.
Desslok approached her touching her chin and looking closer at her face. "Amazing!" Desslok said.
He watched Mark Venture who Natasha still had his arm. "If he lets go I will escort you. I will introduce you to my Lady Demeia." Desslok said holding out his arm for Natasha to take.
Natasha took ahold of his arm and followed his lead. "So, Wildstar how did you find a girl who so closely resembles Trelaina?" Desslok said.
"She has been in training since before the Comet Empire." Derek said.
"I have something I must say." Natasha said smiling sweetly. "I wanted to thank you for tell them how to defeat the Comet Empire. It allowed Conroy to save Sandor and Wildstar." Natasha said looking up at Desslok smiling.
"I only hinted at how to defeat them,” Desslok said. “I was in debt to Zordar for saving my life. I would like to tell Conroy I am glad that he was able to save them to." Desslok said.
"Unfortunately he died saving them. We miss him he was a good comrade." Mark said looking kindly at Natasha. Mark adjusted the arm of gifts Natasha had given him to carry.
Desslok couldn't get over the likeness to Trelaina the Natasha was. He would see a big difference between them only minutes later when Mark was looking at her. The girl smiled sweetly then ran into the door way.
Desslok, Talan, and Mark were there to pick her up. "Oh my, I’m sorry, Emperor Desslok!" Natasha said standing.
"Are you ok Natasha? I told you to watch were you were going." Mark said worried.
"Only my pride is wounded." Natasha said looking at mark though her thick eyelashes and Marks heart seemed to be beating very fast.
Natasha looked at Desslok's face and he had an odd grin as he had her take his arm again.
"Now then Venture what is that you have there?" Desslok asked still looking at the woman.
"I don't know sir these are from Natasha. I mean the ambassador." Mark said.
"They are gifts from my part of Earth from me personally. The tall one is for you. And the other is for your lady." Natasha said smiling sweetly.
"Ah Talan do tell Lady Demeia to come." Desslok said.
They talked as they waited. "So this is a personal gift from you? So Madam Ambassador, what favor are you looking for?" Desslok said his eyes sparkled when Mark Venture’s jaw tightened.
"Ah well I may want a favor. But that wasn't the reason for the gifts. It is a tradition of our people to give a gift." Natasha said.
Desslok held his hand out for Demeia as she came through the door. "This is Lady Demeia, my bride." Desslok said with pride.
"You are marrying your advisor?" Derek said grinning.
"He flatters me!" Demeia said smiling at them all.
Nova and Derek reached out, taking each other’s hand. "You knew this would happen, didn't you?" Derek teased her.
"It was obvious." Nova said.
Mark smiled for he liked seeing his friends like this and had been disappointed when Sandor's wife couldn't come. He was as curious as everyone else when Desslok handed Demeia the box for her.
When she pulled out the egg shaped thing with a gold stand and pearls in a floral pattern. Everyone looked at Natasha. "That is a Faberge style Egg! It has real pearls and 22 carat gold over sterling silver. The egg is enameled in red for Royalty. It is a Romanov egg. But that is just the jewel case. The real gift is inside the egg." Natasha said as if she had rehearsed the description.
Natasha went over and pulled the red tassel opening it. "This is a genuine amber egg with diamond pendent, and is hung on a 22 carrot heavy gold chain. Its origins again are of Romanov era style. The Romanovs ruled Russia for some 450 years." Natasha said backing up so Demeia could take it out of the impressive case.
Desslok put it on her neck and Demeia thanked her all the while crying for joy. "For you Emperor Desslok it is a bottle of our finest aged Russian Vodka. I was not sure of just what to get I hope this will do." Natasha said.
Desslok wasted no time opening it. He looked at it and sniffed. Then he poured himself a goblet. "It is considered very strong where I am from,” Natasha said cautiously.
He took a sip and then smiled. "This is very good. We are honored you thought of us in this way!" Desslok said. He had a servant start pouring cups for everyone.
"Oh not for me; thanks anyway." Nova said. She headed over to where Demeia was looking at her new necklace in the light.
After taking a goblet of vodka Natasha joined the girls. Soon they were talking animatedly. Desslok watched them leaning against the wall drinking more Vodka.
"She is a special girl even if she isn't Trelaina. Is she married?" Talan asked.
Desslok saw Venture’s jaw tighten again and thought it was funny. "No she is single. The man she was going to marry died." Derek said. He too was watching Venture who was looking in Natasha's direction.
"Relax, Venture!" Sandor whispered.
"Relax! They will convince her to stay! Did you see how Talan looked at her? Mark said looking at the men whispering to Sandor.
Then they heard Natasha start singing. It was a pretty song in Russian. And she had a beautiful voice. Mark was impressed as Natasha sang smiling pleasantly. But then she started dancing. He ran up behind her to make certain she didn't fall by putting his hands around her waist.
Desslok smiled for he saw it. "So when are they to marry?" Desslok said knowingly.
"He has not told us of his intentions to marry her. He isn't quite over Trelaina giving her life for Earth." Sandor said to Desslok who was polishing off his second Vodka.
"He needs to live. I was in limbo till I realized the girl I loved was right in front of me. He would do well to realize it too," Desslok laughed.
"I think he is finding that out now. I think she worries him for she drank the Vodka. He doesn't want her to fall." Sandor said laughing. For Mark was right with Natasha.
...Mark's the Protector...
Mark had decided to make sure she made the best impression. To help…her do her job. He started by guiding her around things when he could. And when the surfaces were uneven he had her take his arm.
Now Mark didn't want to say it but he felt it he liked her. And he had seen what she had to wear to the wedding and decided to wear his dress uniform to escort her. He used the old Victorian formal way to escort her by lending her his arm.
Mark found that when he did this he could guide her to the safest route in any terrain. He heard Sandor laugh when he had done it the first time.
So when it came time to go to the palace he slid quickly between Sandor and Derek to go up to her. When he had seen her in her pink satin with the lovely lace his mouth had hung open. He had felt his heart beat in his ears.
He had carried the boxes Natasha had to bring. Seeing what was in them he had been grateful. All of them were breakables. In his mind’s eye he saw her taking a tumble breaking everything.
Mark made certain he was there. He made sure she didn't fall and hurt herself. And his worst fear was when Natasha had a goblet of vodka he began to worry. He had just known that if he had not gone over holding her steady after she had vodka she would have fallen. "You shouldn't drink and walk." Mark teased.
"I am used to it. My family used to drink it like water." Natasha said.
At the end of the night he relaxed and Natasha and Nova slept in rooms adjoining Demeia's. And he Sandor and Mark had special rooms also.
Mark made certain he was there to lend her his arm when she came out. This time Natasha was wearing a lovely silk dress of purple with lace overly and satin ribbons He couldn't take it he wanted to kiss her. And in turn all the men started doing that for the women. The wedding did have dancing and after Desslok danced first with his wife. The second dance was for Nova, who danced elegantly and confidently.
Mark dreaded the third dance for he saw the fiendish look Desslok had coming up and asking Natasha. "I don't dance very well," Natasha said shyly.
"You saw her run into the doorway? This is typical for her." Mark said trying to dissuade him.
In the end Natasha gave up and danced with him. Desslok laughed loudly when she kept stepping on his toes and stumbling tumbling them at one point.
Mark was dancing with Nova and they had watched it with great shock. "I wanted her to show herself proudly." Mark said.
"She is…don't worry. I heard her negotiating for trade and she is amazing." Nova said.
Mark wanted to take her off the floor so she wouldn't be embarrassed.
"You were right, she can't dance." Desslok said to Mark coming up beside him.
"No I told you. She is trying her best, though." Mark said.
"I think she may never save the Earth with special powers. But she will save some lonely man. When she gets her station here I think some of my men might just take to her." Desslok said.
He had motioned for Mark to look at all the men wanting a dance with Natasha.
"If you don't want her to stay here, you have to give her a reason to go back to Earth." Sandor said smiling at Mark’s lost look.
Mark looked up and then saw the grins on Sandor and Desslok's and now Derek and Nova's faces
"You mean me! I am the reason?" Mark said running to the floor moving into the crowd of men around Natasha.
"Finally, he got it." Derek said laughing.
Sandor and Nova looked at him oddly and then started laughing.
Mark found Natasha trying to get out of dancing with anyone. "Isn't this the dance you promised me?" Mark said winking at her.
"Ok but you know your toes will suffer." Natasha said giggling.
"Oh I don't think so. I know how to dance with you." Mark said leaning down putting both arms around her waist. When the music started he swung her around laughing.
"Mark you are sweet. But you don't have to dance with me!" Natasha said.
"Oh so I go through all the trouble on coming up with a reason for you to come home to Earth and you don't like it?" Mark asked.
Natasha gasped as he put her down and pulled her into a hug. "How about this Reason?" Mark said kissing her mouth ardently.
"You like me? You really like me? Me?" Natasha asked happily.
"I not only like you. I found I have fallen in love with you. And it is all your fault." Mark said.
"Oh well of course you like me I look like Trelaina!" Natasha said sadly.
"You may look like her. But you aren't you are a separate and very special girl. I have come to love that girl. I felt I somehow had betrayed Trelaina. That is why I didn't get closer sooner." Mark said kissing her again.
"I am so happy. I am the luckiest of girls I have fallen in love again. I couldn't believe I had known and loved Conroy and when I lost him I thought I could never love or never would be loved again. But then I met you. I am the luckiest. For I have you who love me to. Do you know how special that is? To find a love like this twice in our lives!" Natasha said.
"I guess I can see it that way to. For I would never get you confused with her ever again." Mark said.
"A second chance. And don't you think Trelaina would want you to be happy? I know Conroy would have wanted me to be." Natasha said softly.
"Second chances are a wonderful thing!" Mark said picking her up dancing again. No one else got to dance with his Natasha after this. She was his all that night.
It was a great wedding for Desslok and the gifts from the different regions of Earth were well accepted. Desslok had orders for more Vodka for it is his new favorite liquor.
Natasha and Mark will marry in a year after she finds just the right home for them. And whenever she has to do Ambassador’s work out in space, she goes with Mark her husband on the Argo. They will visit with Fenilla on the way home.
Mark is not jealous of Conroy's memory now. And Mark doesn't confuse Natasha for Trelaina. The memory of their first loves is honored for they gave their lives to save Earth and her people. Mark and Natasha being part of those saved.
In 10 months Natasha will have to find a perfect gift for the birth of a royal child.
Mark is no longer the dark brooding lonely man. Natasha and he will live a long and happy life.
Neither realizes that Desslok's son will become their son in law in the fullness of time….