==Spaceport, disembarkation area==
Chiratamad stepped out of the baggage claim area and paused, adjusting the hang of the duffel over her shoulder. Her fellow passengers walked around her, occasionally tossing a disgruntled look but respecting the uniform too much to say anything. She didn't even notice; her eyes were busy scanning the small crowd in the waiting area for -
The shout was all the warning she got before a blue and white blur knocked her backwards, almost causing her to nearly fall. Instead she wrapped her arms around the small assailant, lifting him from the ground and spinning him around before releasing him and taking a step back.
"You've gotten so tall!" she exclaimed, reaching out to move a stray lock of thick white hair from her son's face. "And what is going on with your hair? Does your zhave not have access to clippers?"
"I like it this way," Thalax replied, crossing his arms. "And zhave says I'm old enough to decide for myself."
"And everyone knows zhave's word is law," another voice added with a chuckle. Chiratamad looked up to see both of her husbands approaching, with her wife and daughter behind them. Tharalan, the taller of the men and the one who had spoken, embraced her. "Welcome home, Chira," he said.
"It's good to be home," she replied, letting him take her duffel as she embraced Shorax, the shorter, stouter of her husbands. "Even if some things have been allowed to get out of control while I was away," she added teasingly as she brought Amatea, her wife into her arms.
"Hrmph," the smaller woman grunted with feigned exasperation. "If you want to try to get that one to sit still long enough for a haircut, be my guest. I'd rather train a wild zabathu."
Chiratamad laughed as she pulled her older child in for a hug. "After the month I've had, shaving a wild zabathu will be a vacation indeed." She looked down at her daughter, eyes bright, hair neatly pulled back and braided. "At least we'll always have Chiramea to remind us what a good child is supposed to be like, eh?" Her daughter blushed at the compliment and pretended not to see her brother stick his tongue out at her.
Linking arms with her wife and daughter, feeling lighter than she had for months, Chiratamad started for the exit. Her husbands and son followed behind, Thalax trying unsuccessfully to get Tharalan to open the duffel to check for presents.
"So, my loves, what grand adventures do you have planned for me while I'm here?" she asked airily.
"Well, you can start by helping this one with her biology homework," Amatea said with a pointed look at the still quiet Chiramea. "I told her not to sign up for the advanced class just because some boy she liked was in it, but does anyone listen to zhave? Of course not. After that you can help me make dinner; it'll be nice having a second pair of hands in the kitchen, you know how our men are, useful as antennae on a Vulcan, and then maybe..."
Chiratamad tuned out the other woman, giving her daughter a conspiratorial nudge. "What's this about a boy?" she asked with a smile.
Chiramea blushed again. "It's nothing, shave." she said.
"Oh, I doubt that," Chiratamad responded. "But I'm not going anywhere for a while. I have time to torture it out of you." She smiled again. Her wife complaining on one side, her husbands and son cavorting behind, the biting cold of an Andorian summer breeze on her cheeks...and soon she'd be on her own couch, in comfortable clothes, sipping real katheka...she could feel the tensions of the last couple of missions slipping away.
"It's good to be home," she said softly.
Chiratamad sh'Kasuv and family