Kat knows that gifts are given on Earth holidays. It's one of the traditions she finds a bit silly, but she adheres to it. She doesn't like having a big fuss made over her but it lifts her heart to see the happiness on people's faces when receiving. Birthdays, Christmas, Hanukkah, St. Valentine's, sometimes even Easter—it gives her a little extra something to look forward to.

This year, for Commander Cruger's birthday, she gave him a most charming pair of cuff links for his Commander's uniform: gold studs with the intricate sign of Sirian Clan Alpha in them. It was quite a feat to pull off but for her dear friend, she's entirely willing. In return, he agrees – reluctantly, at that – not to make a big deal over her birthday. She doesn't like it being a statement, especially since being on Earth and having her age calculated in Earth years makes her feel old. She's only 147, but being surrounded by adolescents, she only ever gets to feel young around Doggie (at about 210 Earth years himself).

"Morning, Kat," Boom greets happily.

Kat smiles back, if only because he didn't say 'happy birthday'. While she suspects that Boom has hacked into her personnel file to learn her birthday Cruger must have told him not to mention it. While Boom doesn't explicitly make birthday gestures, she always finds he's a bit brighter on this particular day (in February, and that's all you need to know). She takes her usual place at her console and finds a small box sitting there. Frowning, "Boom, what's this?"

"What's what?" When he sees Kat holding a small box he shrugs.

Kat frowns. She convinced Doggie not to buy her presents long ago, and, even though he usually still does, he doesn't leave them in her lab. Still, he's the only other person she allows to know the date. On further inspection, she can smell the familiar – delicious, though no one else knows that's her adjective for it – scent of Sirian Commander. There is no note.

When she opens it, a stunning white gold ring sits, waiting for her. She can see her wide green gaze in the band's length. An inscription on the inside reads 'Katherine&Anubis' in Felin and Sirian, respectively. A note sits in the top of the box:

Dear Katherine,

This is a Sirian Luxar Band. It is a tradition to give this to the most precious woman in your life, whether she be family, friend, mate...I give this to you as the woman I cherish more than any other in the universe. You must know you mean more to me than anything, and if you don't, let this ring be a symbol to remind you. Always remember how dear you are to me.



Kat feels tears sting the corners of her eyes. Her smile is radial, coming to her face naturally as she reads the message over and over again. The erratic beating of her heart is filled with love. "Anubis... "

Boom is concerned when he sees his mentor uncharacteristically emotional, but the smile on her face keeps him silent. He assumes Cruger is responsible for the eruption of feeling within Kat, still the only one to evoke such emotion from her.

Kat slips the ring out of the box and finds it on a delicate white gold chain. She flips the note over:

PS: The chain is so that it's still practical to work with. Yes, I know you that well.

Kat laughs to herself and slips the ring on. The minute wight of it, just below the hollow of her throat, makes her feel loved. The cool of the band only makes her feel warm inside. She leaves without a word to Boom, figuring he can look after himself for ten minutes. She heads straight to Cruger's office, disregarding everything around her. Luckily enough, no one is around when she barges in and kisses him with all she's worth. When she pulls her lips away from the lips of his muzzle she looks long and hard into his eyes. "I love you, too."