Word Count: 500 exactly. Whee!
Character: Vir! *hugs Vir* *luffs Vir*
Season: Pre-Season One. Spoiler-free for newbie enjoyment!
Summary: Vir occupies himself before a briefing at Earth’s embassy on Centauri Prime. A lastbesthope Christmas Challenge response and the first of the Tree of Knowledge Vir!Ficlet series.*
Disclaimer: Babylon 5 and its characters are the property of J. Michael Straczynski and Warner Brothers Television. No copyright infringement is intended.
Archive: Enemies and Allies, Jumpnow. All others, please ask.
Vir was early.
Desperate not to start his brand new assignment on the wrong foot, he had over-estimated the amount of time it would take to travel to Earth’s embassy in the capital city by ground transport. Thus, he was left to wait for the Earth Ambassador and the Minister of Foreign Affairs to arrive, consumed by his own anxious introspection.
Foremost in Vir’s thoughts was the smirk on his uncle’s face when Vir was told.
“Do not forget, Vir,” he had said, “you live here solely on my charity. When your father died, I promised to look after your welfare. This opening on Babylon 5 has provided me with a far more pleasant and convenient means of doing so. Unless you wish to be turned out onto the street, I strongly suggest you consider taking the offer.”
Vir wanted so much to succeed, to be worth something to someone. Would he be able to learn all he needed to know to live and work on a Human space station? Would the Centauri ambassador to Babylon 5 like him?
Would he, for once, be allowed to stay?
Vir resisted the urge to pace. The Human receptionist was already staring at him with a mixture of amusement and pity as it was. Instead, he twiddled his thumbs nervously and furtively examined his surroundings.
On the table beside him sat a small tree decorated with lights and silver baubles. It symbolized a Human winter holiday, Vir knew. He searched his memory for the name of it. Chanukah? No, that wasn’t right. Christmas? Yes, maybe that was it. But perhaps he should ask the Human ambassador to confirm his recollection.
In front of the tree was a bowl of odd red and white colored objects encased in clear, crinkling wrappers. Vir picked up one of these and turned it over and over in his hand.
What could be the purpose of such things? Vir puzzled over this for some time before a Human female walked by, snatched one from the bowl, opened the wrapper, and stuck the object in her mouth. The woman shot Vir a sympathetic smile before she continued on her way, brushing an errant strand of hair from her eyes as she went.
Glancing at the receptionist, Vir unwrapped the item in his hand and copied the passing woman’s action.
Most curious- the food was pleasant to taste, yet there was something else that cooled his mouth and nose. He crunched experimentally and was rewarded with an even stronger flavor.
The salutation jolted Vir so suddenly from his reverie that he choked on the sweet and was seized with a fit of coughing for several moments. When he had finally come back to himself, the Human ambassador asked, his eyes dancing, “You all right, son?”
“I think so,” Vir wheezed in reply.
Oh, how utterly embarrassing! A blush crept up Vir’s face as he followed the ambassador into his office, the taste of the sweet still on his tongue.
Author’s Note: Hey, if Daffy Duck still exists in the 23rd century, why not those bite-sized candy canes? *g*
*When thefiringline kicks into gear, I plan on keeping any Vir!Ficlets I write internally consistent. Tree of Knowledge refers to the story of Adam and Eve, which I’ve always interpreted as a fable of lost innocence.