Author's Notes: Okay, this is my first attempt to write in the mirror universe, I hope I do okay. And I don't usually write Travis either, so I hope that he doesn't sound too out of character...
The MACO sat back in his chair as he watched the other crewmembers interacting around him in the mess hall. Every once in a while, one of them would head towards his table, but then would take in the cold stare he fixed them with, and would suddenly decide to sit elsewhere. He did not want company, and radiated such from every pore. And the others knew that he was a well trained soldier who had no compunctions about using force to get his point across. These people were here solely for the benefit of keeping the ship in working order and to get them from one planet to another, so that the glorious Terran Empire could expand its grasp across the galaxy. They were not here to be his friends, even had he wanted any. And the thought of talking with the alien slaves on board as if they were equals to any of the humans made him ill.
So instead, he sat alone, sipping his coffee as he monitored who sat with whom, and undoubtedly plotted to take over their superiors' positions. He was unconcerned about most of these plots unless they were directed at someone in a sufficient position of authority that might be able to advance his own career, but kept his eyes and ears trained for any particularly interesting tidbits of information which may slip out. He kept particular watch on the aliens in the room, many of whom were from species currently in rebellion against the Empire. If he was in charge, he would have wrung every last useful bit of information from the lot of them long before now and jettisoned the remains into space, but he wasn't. No, Forrest kept them on board and treated them far better than he should, but he was the captain. At least for now, the young man thought.
His attention was diverted from the quiet plotting of Crewman Cutler, who wanted to rid herself of a rival for Ensign Rostov's affection, by the door opening. In strutted Ensign Hoshi Sato, the ship's communications officer and the captain's slut. Though Commander Archer clearly wanted her for himself. The young man had heard tales of their budding romance from the days before they were assigned to Enterprise, before Hoshi threw Archer aside for Forrest and the power promised in being the one person who had the captain's ear. He had seen for himself how Commander Archer stared at the young ensign, and at times like this, he could appreciate why as his own eyes followed her movement across the room to the drink dispenser.
Travis leaned forward as he drank in the sight of her delectable form as she got her drink, and then again moved towards the door. She swayed her hips in a rhythm he was sure she knew elicited a specific response from any human male watching. She paused briefly before the door as it opened, about to step out of sight, when the scarred chief engineer entered.
She held him there in the doorway for a few moments, half-turned towards the mess hall, greeting him warmly with a seductive grin, and stroking the unblemished side of his face with the fingers of her free hand. She glanced over his shoulder in a specific direction as she did so. Tucker replied, scowling at her as he pulled away from her touch, turning towards the food bins. He failed to notice the look of triumph on her face as she continued to stare in one particular spot not far to the left of Travis for a few seconds more before turning and leaving the mess hall.
The MACO tracked her gaze to whoever that little display in the doorway had been for, and stiffened in surprise. One of the captain's loyal aliens was at the receiving end of Hoshi's gaze. But what surprised him more was the look of utter hatred and jealousy etched briefly upon her face before being replaced once more with a cool, controlled Vulcan mask. Her eyes drifted from the door towards the food bins, and Travis saw that she was fixed on Tucker. Something still burned in her eyes, even if the rest of her face showed no emotion, as she watched him collect his meal.
He watched as Commander T'Pol watched the engineer, grateful that he was alone so there were no distractions from his observations. Once Tucker had his lunch tray filled, he appeared to scan the room full of half-filled tables half-heartedly, but Travis saw his gaze lock onto T'Pol's almost at once, as if he knew exactly where she was in the room without having to look. Something reflected in the engineer's eyes as he made his way through the mess hall towards T'Pol, taking him directly past Travis's table. There was a tenderness almost as he held her gaze, perhaps even a hint of a silent apology in his eyes for the earlier scene with Hoshi. Travis glanced causally over towards T'Pol's table as the engineer passed him and saw the burning fire in her eyes temper somewhat as she dipped her head slightly in acknowledgement, seeming to accept his apology.
Then the moment was broken, as she stood to leave. "You may have my table, Commander," she told him as she started to leave.
He snorted at her, "Don't leave on my account, Commander. I wouldn't want to deprive you of your salad."
"I have finished my meal," she responded icily. "Do not presume that your presence would be sufficient cause for me to leave before I was done." The other crew had only glanced up briefly at the start of their conversation, knowing well that the two hated each other and often argued about the smallest things, then ignored them.
Leering, Tucker spoke softly in her ear and Travis had to strain to hear it. "How about a little of my presence in your quarters tonight then, darlin'?"
"I have work to do, Commander. The captain wishes to have a full analysis of the sensor logs from our last battle in the morning. If you will excuse me." She pushed past him, but Travis caught the small nod she gave in response to his quiet question. Tucker set his tray down on her table and openly watched as she swayed her own hips, perhaps not as practiced as Hoshi had been but no less effective, as she strode across the room for the door.
Travis eyed one, then the other. She wants him, he realized. And he desires her as well, the sergeant knew from the possessive stare he was giving her. Disgusting. How can he possibly want that alien? She was inferior, like all her species, to any human. She might be a looker, but she was a slave. Nevertheless, it was a useful bit of information to have. He wasn't sure how it might benefit him right now, but it would never hurt to keep such things in mind for future reference. After all, he thought, knowledge is power. And I don't plan on being a MACO sergeant for the rest of my life. I just have to wait for the proper opportunity to use it...
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