It was long after they had sent out the message to the Enterprise that Caithlin Dar noticed Sybok sitting alone. There was something about him that seemed incredibly vulnerable, something striking coming from the...uncommonly cheerful Vulcan.
Not to mention kind.
Caithlin could still remember how he had helped them. How he had helped General Korrd overcome his feelings of displacement and disgrace, how he had helped Talbot overcome his guilt over what happened on Andor. How he had helped her come to terms with her own feelings of being out of place, her dealing with the bigotry against Romulans that seemed to have arisen since Nero’s attacks. Caithlin wished she knew exactly what to make of him, if he was some strange sort of angel that had dropped into their lives.
(Humans believed in angels, at least. Caithlin wondered if there was some sort of validity to that claim)
Sybok sat alone in that moment, head bowed. He wasn’t weeping, but he seemed incredibly solemn and incredibly tired. Her heart ached for him. When they had confronted her pain, Sybok had said explicitly that he didn’t think the Romulan race in general was to blame for what Nero had done. Still, she wished there was something she could do.
Sybok looked up at her approach. She couldn’t help but be struck by how lovely he really was. His long black hair, a bit wild from living on Nimbus III for so long. His eyes, terribly intelligent, terribly deep. She swore that she could lose herself in those eyes.
The thought was, honestly, a bit scary — but not unwelcome.
“Hello, Caithlin,” he said.
“Hello,” she said. “Are you...well?”
“I am merely tired,” Sybok said. “It’s been a long few days.”
“I wanted to thank you for all you’ve done for us,” Caithlin said. “I feel like...like I’ve exorcised something that’s been tormenting me a while.”
“I’m glad, Caithlin,” Sybok said. “But really...the power was in you all along. I merely provided the right push.” He sighed. “It’s easy to see the universe as unkind when you see what pains others have had to go through, but there’s beauty there too. You, J’onn, St. John Talbot, Korrd...you are truly radiant beings.”
“You’re a radiant being too.”
“I do what I can.”
“You never really told us,” Caithlin said, “About what happened to you. How you...” She shook her head. “Forgive me. I don’t mean to — ”
“It’s a good question. Sometimes,” Sybok said, “I think my exile from Vulcan may have saved my life.”
“Your exile?” Caithlin said.
“Yes. I...did a terrible thing that I am still ashamed of doing. I was exiled for it. No companions, nothing of that sort. I’ve been...alone for a while.”
“You’re not alone,” Caithlin said. “You have us.”
Sybok turned towards her, and smiled. It was still odd seeing a Vulcan smiling. “I do, Caithlin. The Army of Light aren’t merely soldiers, but my friends.”
Caithlin nodded. How odd, to call Sybok a friend. But it was true, in a way. He had become her friend, in a bizarre way. Accepted her wholeheartedly and forgiven her in a way she hadn’t thought possible. She hoped she could return the favor. Help him, if possible.
The Enterprise would show up at any moment now. They would begin their boarding the ship soon. The Captain would be confused at first, but then he’d understand. They all would.
For now, she could keep a weary Vulcan company, however she could.