"To Believe Or Not To Believe"
Lt. Cmdr Navarre Shinta
Assistant Chief Counselor
Lt. James Mitchell
Assistant Chief Science Officer
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
Chief Counselor/Second Officer
Shinta returned to the cell the next day. She had been greatly disturbed by him yesterday, he had been very agitated when she left. Shinta had stayed until he received medical attention, and she had prescribed a slight sedative. In her office she had read his file in detail, and had come to the conclusion that rape was not like this man. So she was leaning toward believing him. Strange things were happening on the ship, so something could be influencing him.
"Good morning, James. I hope you slept." With a slight smile she sat down next to him. "I will be honest to you, your case does not look good. And I have not yet been successful in getting you out of jail. But I believe your story, I think you did it." She held up a hand when he started to protest. "But I also think that you were under the influence of something. Or someone, strange things have been going on the ship lately. And we are going to have to proof that to get you out of here. After that I want to see you often, because I think there is a lot in your past that should be dealt with. But for know we are going to concentrate on getting these charges dropped."
"Thank you, Counsellor. It's a start, and I really appreciate it." James smiled for the first time in days, as a faint glimmer of hope dawned on him. "You have no idea what that means to me, even if you don't truly believe me or not." He was honestly feeling better after his talk with her yesterday; he felt relieved of a great burden.
He sat on the corner of his bunk, one knee up, arm resting on it, head leaned back against the wall. Colour had come back into his cheeks and he felt much rested, as he slept without incident, save the mandatory security sweeps security made every few hours or so. Nobody bothered him anymore. Not since the Counsellor started talking with him.
"So you got any ideas where to start in getting the proof we need? I gotta get out of here and back to work before this accusation starts getting around." He rocked his head as he spoke, eyes closed in peaceful solitude.
Shinta shifted on the end of his bed to better her view of his reaction to her idea. "In the past I have gotten good results with patients using hypno therapy. It is something you might consider trying. Think about it for a minute, I do not want to rush you."
"Counsellor, I've been in this cell pretty much by myself for 4 days." He opened his eyes and looked to the ceiling. "I don't need to think anymore, as that is all I've been doing for the entire time I've been here. I just want to get this over with, regardless of the outcome." He rolled his head to the side and sighed.
"I'm in your hands, Counsellor. Do your worst, as things can only get better from here. Let's do it."
"I will be right back." Shinta said and left him for a minute. She went to a commpanel and called Karyn.
"Boss, I am with Lieutenant Mitchell right now. I am going to try hypno therapy to bring his memory back. I do not think he is guilty off the rape. Right now it is still based on instinct, but you know my feelings. I would like it if you and Tyrola could be present. You could stand outside, so he doesn't have to see you. I think that might be beneficial for your patient. I am going to start work pretty soon, feel free to observe."
["Acknowledged, Counselor, please wait to get started until I arrive. The three of us should talk before you proceed."]
With that, Shinta broke the connection and went back inside to wait for Karyn to arrive.
A few minutes later, Karyn was in front of Mitchell's brig cell, looking at their would-be rapist with only a forcefield between them. She had long since stopped trying to determine whether one was capable of such crimes even by instinct, as she had learned too many times there was just no way to know without unequivocal proof.
Shinta and she had previously discussed the use of hypnotherapy for James, and although the technique wasn't as reliable as other methods, she had come up with no other way to get at the truth. Databases were vague and her own impression sketchy. All they had were people's memories and subconscious impressions, and at this point Karyn was willing to try anything. What she had experienced seemed more like a dream anyway, and hypnotherapy had been used successfully in some cases in trying to dig up what the mind attempted to bury. Karyn smiled inwardly, at least it was something other than instinct.
Karyn nodded to both Mitchell and Navarre. "Hello, Lieutenant. I assume Shinta has informed you of what is involved in the process of hypnotherapy, so I'll just tell you we are looking to explain your recent behavior. Neither Shinta or myself believe you intentionally hurt PO Lomax, but without any clear knowledge of this incident, we can't begin to clear matters up. If you were manipulated psychically or were drugged, we believe your unconscious can tell us something your conscious mind can't bring forth. Naturally, someone in this state is highly sensitive to suggestion, so with your permission, I'd like to monitor your progress here."
"I want to get at the truth as much as you do, Counsellor." He glanced from one woman to the next, observing the differences in the demeanour of the two from the last counsellor he saw on this ship. At least they didn't want to relieve him of duty permanently, and they sure as heck don't see him as a liability. They seemed genuinely concerned right from the start.
"Feel free to stay, Commander. The more the merrier." He shrugged as he breathed deeply. Nerves were biting at him.
Karyn smiled reassuringly to both and then moved outside of the cell so she could observe from a less obtrusive distance.
Shinta sat down next to James again and started to talk to him.
"James, before we begin you will need to relax. So we are going to try some relaxation exercises. I know this will not be easy for you in your present state. But please give it a try." It was also for him to get used to her voice, she very slowly began to instruct him how to breath deeply and tense and relax all his muscle groups in turn.
"You are doing fine." she said a little later. "Now I need you to relax completely, let go of all the tension like we have practiced. Close your eyes, and let your body grow heavy." Within a few moments he was completely hypnotized.
"Now I want you to go back, and remember exactly what happened that day." She said gently.
He drifted through his memories, randomly flashing before him without any sense of order, until they began to slow down and focus on a single point. Darkness enveloped him, and he grew frightened. His breathing became heavy,and laboured and claustrophobia quickened unto him.
Shinta saw this, and spoke softly to him, as his heart rate monitors climbed and he began to sweat and tremble.
Karyn observed the physical evidence of fear and tensed slightly. This was normal, but it always made her heart quicken just to be digging this closely into the subconscious. She pulled her own medical tricorder out from beside her and used the stable biosigns to reassure herself more. Karyn caught Shinta's eye as she continued.
"James, break away from what you are seeing. I want to you watch it from a distance as a third person. An observer unseen." She kept one eye on him, and another on her tricorder as she fingered the hypospray that would end the session if her own training could not disassociate him from his remembrances.
He heard her voice, and it was soothing to him, as if it were a lilt his mother would sing to him when he were a babe. It echoed in his thoughts, and then he saw himself.. The shroud lifted......
"I see myself...." He proceeded to describe his surroundings and events.
He saw himself intertwined with Tyrola. They were locked in a passionate embrace, probing each other with their tongues for several long moments, until she pulled herself away.
"I...uh..." She looked into his eyes and sighed lightly. "How about some breakfast?"
James watched himself get confused as Ty pulled herself away from him. She brushed her hair back and leaned on his shoulder. Then the strangest thing happened.
He watched his image shimmer as it was holding Tyrola. She was speaking to him, but something was distracting his thoughts. His visage glazed over, and his eyes glowed a fierce red for a single second, then faded.
"I am not sure what it is that I am seeing now. I don't understand... Something strange is happening...." James was breathing heavily now. His memory-image was elongating itself, moving in slow motion, as if in freeze-frame. Another image superimposed itself on his, and the dream-image of himself metamporhosed itself into a phantasm, yanked from his body and suspended behind it by a wispy, writhing strand of ectoplasm.
What was left was the shell of his body, but not his soul. Superimposed on his form was the image of a woman, dressed in white. It was like a double-image, lagging out of time with each other.....
Shinta noticed that his breathing became very rapid. James looked confused, even scared, and she was losing him.
Very calmly she said. "James, I want you to wake now. You have done fine, but we are going to stop for now. When I tell you, you will open your eyes. Now."
His eyes snapped open, he was still breathing very rapidly. In this state he would do no good. Shinta set the hypo against his throat.
"You're going to sleep for a little while now, James. We will talk again in the morning, and hopefully we will be able to get you out of here then."
Karyn gestured silently for Shinta to follow her out of the brig. As they moved carefully across the room, she was more convinced than ever James was the victim of some kind of manipulation, but without a clear description of what it was he saw, it was hard to make sense of it now. Karyn hoped the images would be clearer for him in the morning, for this was the closest they had gotten to proof that Vlad and Lilith were responsible.
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
"Back To Basics"
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
Chief Counselor/Second Officer
Lt. Commander Navarre Shinta
Assistant Chief Counselor
***Karyn's Office, USS Galaxy***
Karyn pinched the bridge of her nose and rubbed her aching eyes. Her hunt for historical references to the Sanguinarians or people like them in the literary database was proving very frustrating. Karyn appreciated literature for its expressiveness and creativity, not necessarily for its accurate recounting of facts. It was hard to separate fact from fiction, as most mythological pieces were passed down orally from generation to generation and tended to change over time, but she had yet to come across a culture which did not have a reference to "Dark beings" presiding over the land and spreading evil. She had the computer trying to construct a timeline and tracking the origin of each legend to see if there were connections, but so far all she found herself doing was staring at seemingly unrelated flights of fancy.
Leaving the computer to its analysis, she decided to see how Shinta was progressing with Lt. Mitchell. It bothered her there was no rhyme or reason to the rash behavior aboard ship, but even more, it bothered her people had no clear memory of events leading to the unexplained blood loss. Even the most traumatic experience, left a finger print.
Karyn knocked on the frame of Shinta's office door. "Hey, any progress with James Mitchell?"
Shinta was tired too. She had sat with James until he fell asleep, and had then gone back to her office to think about his case. Strange things were going on the ship, and that worried her more and more. But she did not think he was guilty anymore. She looked up and smiled at her boss. "He is still sleeping, James was pretty upset earlier. Karyn, I do not think he did it. He was under the influence of a spirit. There is something evil on board." Shinta surprised herself, she was not a religious person, and yet now that she said it, she could actually sense something evil hovering on the ship.
"I know the feeling and I observed the session with you, but I believe our Sanguinarian guests are more humanoid than they want us to believe. I'm inclined to agree with you regarding Mitchell's guilt, as it seems there are a number of people who are not acting like themselves thanks to an outside influence of some sort, but until we know more, I can't report one or the other."
"Can you get him out of the cell? He is going crazy there. I would like to transfer him tomorrow morning," she hesitated. "Karyn, can I talk to your patient? I know that she must be feeling awful, but we must tell her that James is not guilty. In fact, I think he loves her very much."
Karyn shook her head, "I can't accept his innocence on our instincts alone, and given the wave of violence that has been plaguing the Galaxy, I think it would be irresponsible of us to ask Security to let him go ROR. The best I could do is maybe get him released and restricted to quarters, but that's only if Lt. Commander Elaithin agrees, and naturally we'd have to tell Tyrola Lomax first since she's pressing charges."
Karyn sighed. "I've seen the medical report, Shinta. Whether he was aware of what he was doing or under the influence of something else, he assaulted her, and that's not something we can take lightly. Right now I'm still trying to get her to open up and tell me what happened, so I doubt she cares how he really feels about her at the moment. I think any attempt to get her to see his side of things will just confuse and frighten her more. She needs some time to deal with this and decide for herself what she wants."
"I agree with you there, she should get all the time she needs." A shadow passed over her face, and she hid her memories. "But he has to get out of that jail, it is bad for him. Can you talk with Lt. Commander Elaithin, maybe we could keep him here in counseling, we have some beds for disturbed patients. I really want to get him out of there as soon as possible, Karyn. I will not go against regulations, but I am begging you to speed things up."
"I'll see what I can do, but I can't promise you anything. I-" she was interrupted by the meek voice of Rebecca Von Ernst. "Counselor, the Captain has called an emergency Senior Staff meeting, please make your way to the Observation Lounge."
Karyn tapped her combadge. ["Acknowledged. I'll be there shortly."] She closed the channel and looked apolegetically toward Shinta. "Gotta go, hold the fort here and I'll see about talking to Jii."
With that, Karyn sped to out of the Counseling Department and toward the nearest turbolift.
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
"A Meeting Of The Minds"
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
Chief Counselor/Second Officer
***Observation Lounge, USS Galaxy***
Tapping her combadge to close the channel between herself and her Assistant Chief Counselor, Lt. Commander Navarre Shinta, Karyn took the moment to compose her thoughts.
She had decided it would be best for her own senior staff to sit in on this meeting, because it seemed with each passing hour more and more people were coming in complaining of blackouts and unexplained disorientation. By now she had told her officers to red flag those cases and to pay attention to details regarding hallucinations or whether unusual memories appeared to surface among the crew. She was basically trying to find out if there was a recurring theme, or if there was a pattern of some sort.
While she couldn't afford for any of them to leave their posts during this emergency given the number of crew coming in, she wanted her senior counselors to participate in the briefing and to be able to participate via an open comchannel.
Karyn tried to resist the urge to drum her fingers on the shiny black table and was only partially successful. She wondered why the emergency staff meeting had been called, and hoped it had something to do with the capture of Lady Lilith and Lord Vlad. The last she had heard, they were still at large, and given the fact they weren't detectable using tricorders, it wasn't hard to understand.
Having spent most of her time between appointments culling the literary database for evidence of an alien species similiar to their Sanguinarian guests, she'd only recently heard of the Captain's encounter with the Sanguinarians. He seemed not too worse for wear, though she wished she could offer more for his trouble. She'd found several references to people who could've been the Sanguinarians or just as easily a ghost story meant to frighten eight year olds. She hadn't ruled anything out, but it was difficult to separate that which might offer historical background from that which was meant to entertain.
Looking around, she noted several people missing and hoped they hadn't suffered the same fate as so many of the crew, though she was sure sickbay would have notified her if there were. She had become quite a familiar sight lately, attempting to piece together as many details as she could about each experience. She checked the chronometer anxiously one more time and considered trying to raise each of their missing officers via the comm, but resisted. *Too many cooks...* She had hoped to speak to Lt. Commander Elaithin about releasing Lt. Mitchell from the brig and confining him to quarters, but Seth was the only Security representative she saw, and somehow she doubted he'd be receptive to it, but she decided to speak to him after the meeting.
Her thoughts were interrupted by a comment from the Captain addressing Dr. Dothan.
"Yes Doctor?" the Captain asked looking at Andree.
"I know the meeting hasn't officially begun yet Captain, but my staff and I have been brainstorming on solutions to this dilemma, and have come up with two things so far." Andree stated.
"Bonzer 'mate. Let's hear it." Lee stated, glancing around at those present and adding, "That is the purpose of this brain storming session. To figure out a way to deal with our Sanguinarian guests."
After making the statement, the General's attention returned to the Chief Medical Officer. "Please continue Doctor."
"We can tag every member of the crew with a tracking bracelet like security was forced to do during the 'Janeway Virus' incident. Doing so will allow us to keep accurate tabs on anyone who is aroused, and not in the company of another living being, and possibly beam them to sickbay, or hold them in the transporter buffers until security can detain them. It is also possible that sensors that are more organic in nature, might have a chance of detecting the Sanguinarians." Andree suggested.
"Those are good ideas 'mate. Though I don't know how effective the bracelet tags will be. If I recall, they were only partially successful for the virus incident, and then there wasn't the complication of programming them to detect..." Lee paused awkwardly, "...arousal, without the presence of another person near by."
"I also don't know how well received such devices would be by the crew in general." Lee added. "But it's worth investigating. Now the idea of adjusting our internal sensors to scan for a broader spectrum or for some other property that could help us pin point our guest's where-a-bouts sounds like just the thing." Lee nodded, "Locating them however is only part of the problem. We need to also figure out what can be done once we do find them."
Glancing at his chronometer, the Captain tapped his fingers on the table impatiently. "Where the cri-key are the others? You did say an Emergency staff meeting, didn't you Lieutenant'?" Lee asked towards von Ernst.
All eyes turned to the wiry redhead who swallowed nervously. "Yea..yea...yes Captain."
Again leaning back in his chair, the General shook his head. "Well, the others can join whenever they arrive. Let's get started. This is a brainstorming session to figure out how to deal with our visitors. If you have any information about the Sanguinarians, or have any ideas, no matter how far fetched, on how to contain them and regain control of the ship, I want to hear it."
Taking the opportunity to take the attention off the skittish Von Ernst, Karyn chimed in. "I personally could care less about whining from our crew about the bracelets if it meant they were going to be safer because of them. A loss of privacy is not that much of a sacrifice when you consider not everyone was lucky to survive an encounter with the Sanguinarians," she paused for a moment, thinking about Linda Lilito. "Unfortunately, even if we could detect sexual arousal via the bracelets, I'm not sure it would be enough. They could drain someone dry right in front of us and without being able to detect them, we wouldn't be able to do a damn thing. What we need is a way to keep from being targets until they're caught. Without sufficient nutrients, they'd be forced to deal with us. What about using some sort of mood suppressant to keep everyone's emotions on a more even keel, something that would keep the crew from becoming excitable? They seem to feed off strong emotions just as much as anything else."
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
By Lt Rose Isis MacAllen
Lt (jg) Wilhem Quevvenson
Rose was looking over some information that one of her crewmember gave to her on how to kill the vampires she was waiting for her other parter to come while she ate her buttered Betazoid toast.
Wilhem soon walked in, glancing at things in his hands. "Here you go, Rose," he said to her.
"What are these my friend?" Rose asked with a look on her face, looking at the things in Wilhem's hands.
Wilhem smiled, "These are the rudimentary devices that hold off vampires in my world. A little garlic, which is unpleasant to them. Not inviting them into your abode. And a list of the devices used to kill vampires. Nothing more, nothing less."
"Same thing Betazoids used in the old days when their were vampires." Rose said walking around looking at the list. *Damn it I want to kill them, Vlad is always watching me.* Rose thought to herself while walking around reading.
Wilhem went over and patted her shoulder, "I know you do. I want to slay as many of the vampires as possible too. But it might not happen the way of legends. I know that some of those methods worked on my world, because I've had to do them. But this universe is so different, that it just might not work the same way."
"I trying to fight him out of my dreams, he even comes into my room to watch me sleep sometimes. Why am I so special to him and not some other woman on the ship?"
Wilhem smiled, "It is probably because you seem so innocent. Innocence attracts vampires. They want to corrupt what is pure. Make it one of them. It is one of their secret wisehs. And Vlad has his eye on Autumn, too. I am sorry to say I may not be able to protect her in that event."
"Oh I'm not that damn innocent! I can make half of these women on the ship, look sick." Rose said with a grin, then trying to think what to write in her report for the CSciO.
Wilhem smiled warmly, "I know. But to Vlad there is an aura of innocence around you. And as to the report to the CSciO, how about we tell him of the many varied ways of killing vampires. It could be a good thing in the days to come. When we decide to slay them befoer they slay us."
"I need help with the report then."
Wilhem nodded, "i cna give you some ideas of what ot put in. Put in that running water harms them. Put that stakes kill them, but only when buried into their hearts in their coffins."
"Ok well do!" Rose said as she started typing:
To: Lt Commander Peterson and Captain Price From: Lt Rose Isis MacAllen and Lt (jg) Wilhem Quevvenson
RE: Killing the vampires
In my last report I have told you with Wilhem Quevvenson help what kind of people we are dealing with and I still believe in that fact. Now there are a few ways to kill the vampire if you do believe that this theory.
1. Holy water, from any holy site in the galaxy. Vampires of any race are very affair of holy water from any kinds of god or gods of the galaxy.
2. Put an wooden stake though their hearts but only buried into their hearts in their coffins.
This is all we got so far, I hope this report pleases the both of you.
"Ok done, here you look it over and see if I miss anything." Rose said with the smile while drinking her Betazoid tea.
Wilhem looked it over and said, "you might want ot put the fact that this is a common theme throughout all known races. That would make it look more scientific, and not look like we were raving people who feared all that is not like us."
"Oh ok no problem." Rose said while adding on some more information to the PADD.
On the PADD:
Add information: This are the common theme throughout all known races on the Galaxy.
"Now the report is done!" Rose said with a smile.
"Computer send to Commander Peterson and Captain Price now." Rose order the computer as she feel this is one of her best work to date.
"Quantum Mathematics and You!"
Starring Rebecca, and with unauthorized appearances by a whole lot of people.
(just prior to the staff meeting)
The United Starship Galaxy was currently assigned to explore the interstellar void in a region of space devastated by the so-called Doomsday Device over 100 years earlier.
The United Starship Galaxy was presently tasked with investigating and cataloging the recently discovered Tamarian Sleeper ship discovered adrift in said region of space.
The United Starship Galaxy was under the command of One Captain Robert Edward Lee Price who had deigned it should remain at station keeping and motionless while above tasks were being accomplished.
Unfortunately none of the above applied....
The United Starship Galaxy was instead under the (temporary) command of One Lieutenant Rebecca von Ernst, and was in the process travellingat speeds upwards of Warp 8, leaving both Assigned patrol area, and Tamarian relic far far behind.
Needless to say there were some issues to resolve aboard the United Starship Galaxy.
"C'mon c'mon, give me a boost Rag.just a little further.
Perched atop the sturdy shoulders of Chief Helmsman Raginald Gustavson, the petite Rebecca von Ernst wobbled and swayed a half meter below the brilliant ceiling mounted window that granted an awe inspiring view of the Stars outside to the members of the Galaxy Bridge crew. "Boost me higher," She urged, her fingertips flailing helplessly in a n effort to gain purchase on the window above. "It sure would help if you could lift me higher."
"It sure would help---ooof! Would help if you were TALLER." The blond Space Boomer grumbled back at the diminutive young officer.
Rebecca's slight 95 pound figure was really not too much of a strain on the physically fit Gustavson. As a matter of fact, lifting her had not been a problem at all. The difficultly lay in boosting her high enough so her 5' 0" stature would bring her close enough to accomplish what she was attempting.
"Tell me again...WHY are we doing this?" The Security Officer Ensign Arel Smith asked dubiously from the Tactical Arch. The sight of one officer perched atop another in the middle of the bridge was not one they prepared you for at the Academy.
"Navi---whoa don't drop me...Navigation of course." Rebecca answered offhandedly as she struggled with her balance.
Smith frowned. True she majored in Security Procedures, and not Interstellar Astrogation, but she was pretty sure that circus tumbling was not part of the accepted Starfleet procedure. "And...we are doing that..how?"
Unconsciously shrugging and almost loosing her balance in the process Rebecca explained. "Ok, we're at Red Alert because why?"
"Because Helm, navigation and External sensors are offline, and the Galaxy is hell bent for who knows where." Arel answered still frowning.
"Right..well, unfortunately with External sensors down we can't even tell where we're going, let alone how to get back...we need to figure that out."
"I thought that's what the Whales down in Cetacean Ops were for." The security officer argued. "Why else would we lug around several tons worth of overgrown fish."
Gustavson answered that one, as he strained to lift the Lieutenant higher. " Warp Speed Ensign..Warp fields confuse the Whales, so we cant get a bearing off of them until we drop to Impulse. Unfortunately we don't know when that will be, and.---oof. the Captain's gonna want some answers before then."
"And the skylight?"
Rebecca gestured at the smoking remains of the Main Viewer..now offline.."Only other window on the Bridge..I need to do some Stargazing and see where we are going."
The bridge hushed into uneasy silence at Rebecca's plan. The practice of taking Star-sightings at Warp was problematic at best. The same Warp fields that confused the Whales innate sense of direction, also served to blur and skew the appearance of nearby stars in nearly unpredictable ways. It was like the Starship was in the midst of a thousand Fun House mirrors all lit with candles whirling about at incredible speeds, and trying to keep track of which candle was where and how far it had moved in relation to all the others. As difficult as that sounded, what Rebecca was proposing was infinitely worse. Mirrors.curved or otherwise follow a specific, well defined set of laws governing convex and concave surfaces in a three dimensional universe...Warp Fields on the other hand stretch and skew a universe of infinite Dimensions in completely random patterns that can only be described at great length with the aid of highly complex and sometimes theoretical Mathematical equations.
While Warp travel in the Federation was common, not but a mere handful completely grasped the Metaphysical Laws behind the phenomena. (Much like the telephone of today..Nearly everyone on the planet knows how to use one, but how many of us know how it works in detail?)
All these concerns the bridge crew kept to themselves, instead concentrating on the strange sight of little Rebecca perched on Raginald's shoulders.
A thought struck Arel though, and she opened her mouth again. "Why the skylight? Why not the windows in the briefing lounge?"
Now having steadied herself with both hands on either side of the round window, and staring intently into the swirling void outside Rebecca answered only offhandedly. "Those windows look out onto the Warp Nacelles...The Quantum Flux fields are in greater Dimensional disharmony back that-a-way. You'd rather I delve into twelfth Dimensional Matrices rather than use the Lateral Parabolic Reasoning by looking out the top window instead?"
What the hell did she just say?
"Oh yes of course." Arel remarked with a sigh, "How silly of me.."
What Rebecca was proposing was to make sense of these whirling multicolored lights and somehow plot a course off of them using twelfth dimensional Disharmonic Math...child's play.
For long moments the tiny redhead balanced atop the Helmsman 's shoulders gazing into the other-reality of Warp space.
The whirling bands of light etched intricate patterns in her minds eye that her powerful memory immediately sorted and stored for easy analysis. Complex equations involving Macro-universal concepts of space and time began to form in her mind as little neurons began to fire with machine-gun rapidness.
For most of her day, Rebecca tended to stumble along in a relative clueless daze, only remotely aware of the events around her. Although her photographic memory noted and stored almost everything around her, she was usually too scatterbrained to access, let alone use said information.
However, when she put her mind to it, there were few better in the Federation for recognizing and analyzing Mathematical Patterns in the world in which we all live. Her old School-Mate Wesley Crusher was one of those people, but then again his talents ran towards Propulsion and Warp Theory, while Rebecca's abilities were more in the raw Math of things.
The sullen Wesley had joined with Cadet von Ernst during the final year of his aborted Academy Career, and indeed collaborated with the then-Sophomore von Ernst on a few Technical papers. Rebecca, deathly afraid of boys, had found Wesley to be less intimidating than most. She didn't fear his abilities, since she understood the details as much as he did. Also he didn't torment her like nearly everyone else at the Academy was doing at the time.
Not that he was openly friendly mind you. Cadet Crusher was frequently sullen and depressed during those final months at the Academy, and rarely spoke to Rebecca, let alone anyone else. That suited the shy von Ernst fine. The two of them could sit in silence for hours at a time collaborating on their project without any needless interruptions or pretenses at socialization.
Rebecca shhok her head a bit and brought herself back to the present. ~~How the noodles did I drift off thinking about Cadet Crusher?~~ she wondered to herself.
"Yo, Lieutenant..coming down anytime soon?" Lt. Commander Gustavson's plaintive voice drifted up from below, " My shoulders are starting to ache."
Stuttering an apology, Rebecca wobbled a bit, and then hopped clumsily to the deck below, her mind still whirling with Quantum Mathematical Equations...and old school memories.
Curling up in the Command Chair, Indian Style, Rebecca rested her chin in palms and focussed on a small spot on the floor as she tumbled the numbers in her head.
~~~...Warp field intensity at 23 million cochranes, filtered along the x-axis plus 47 degrees, star-line durations at 4.27 millisecond intervals,, allowing for the Gutzenberger Principal of Sub-Space Distortion, Carry the 3, Taking the Quadratic Root and then Extending...~~~
"Holy Noodles.." She breathed, as the answer popped in her head. "We're above the Galactic Plane and Climbing..We're leaving the Milky Way!"
Everyone on the Bridge took notice of that....Stories of Captain Kirk's failed attempt to breach the Barrier at the edge of the Galaxy and the resulting effect on Commander Gary Mitchell, we're the stuff of Legends back at the Academy.
"We're gonna go insane..."
Randall and Dante
=Qwik Stop Security storeroom=
"Vampires?" Dante looked over at his partner, "Like Dracula?"
Randall nodded, "That's right mon frere, blood sucking vampires, on the ship, Jay told me..."
"Wait a minute, Jay?? the same guy who swears Heather Sanchez snuck in to his quarters and they spent a night in the sack, that Jay?? Hell I was in security when she kicked his ass."
"Now now Dante, Jay may be full of shit on some occasions, but he swears there was a vampire and he killed one of em with a wooden stake."
"That was a cut out in a kindergarden classroom."
"Oh yea." Randal shrugged and went back to his magazine.
Dante sighed, "Do you have to bring that again."
"Oh.. listen to this one.. Dear Penthouse... I was all alone in my shuttle when these three Orion Slave girls..."
It would be a long day...
THen they heard, the voice of Rebecca Von Ernst said the phrase red alert...
Dante got up and removed two phasers from teh weapons locker and tossed one to Randall. Then went back over and sat down.
Randall pointed it at the door and then the wall.
"Will you stop that. I swear you've used phasers before."
"There's something quite cool about having this much power available and so portable too." Then the phaser was holstered, "you gotta admit, Starfleet, they got the coolest weapons."
Dante just sighed, it would be a long long day.
Chester Copperpot sat in the brig with his feet up and a copy of Euripides' "The Trojan Women" in his lap. The prisoner had already escaped once, so Chester was more alert than usual. his phaser sat on his lap as well, set at full stun, holding the page for him. The forcefields has been reinforced, and Copperpot faced him, rather than using the desk light behind him and sitting with his back to the cell, as was his usual practice.
The glare of the lighting in the brig, designed to annoy the crap out of prisoners, was currently irritating his own eyes. He rubbed them, and he heard the man in the brig franticly pushing buttons.
"It won't work," Chester explained. "After hearing about your last brig-related adventure, I turned the replicator off. I don't want you somehow replciating yourself a fingernail file and working your way out of there, Doc."
Dr. Sansky glared at him. "How am I to eat, then?"
Copperpot looked up from his reading, plainly irritated. "You know, I hadn't thought of that. I'll have to check with my CO." He looked back down to his book and did not budge, save to turn the page.
"Ensign," Sansky said. "When are you going to let me the hell out of here?"
"Can't you see I'm reading?" Copperpot asked. "And, please, call me Chuck. If you're to be here a while, we should at least be friendly."
"Fine," Sansky said, hiding his irritation. "Chuck. Why don't you go ask your CO about getting me out of here?"
"Have you ever read any Euripides, Doctor?" Copperpot asked. His gaze softened. It seemed an innocent and well-intentioned question. The man was, afterall, seemingly consumed by this book.
"No," the doctor paused. "I can't say that I have."
"Pity," Copperpot said quickly and softly. "Any of the Greek playwrites, then? Aeschylus? Sophocles?"
"Oh, yes," the doctor responded. "We read 'The Persians' when I was in the Academy."
"Ah," Copperpot's eyes lit up. " 'Dismay, and rout, and ruin, ills that wait on man's afflicted fortune, sink us down.' A great work." Sansky nodded, confused, but beginning to think that he was getting through to the young ensign.
There was a long silence. Ensign Copperpot's eyes returned to his book. Sansky stared at him in silence.
"So, Chuck," Sansky said awkwardly, "how about..."
Copperpot's eyes shot up quickly, there was a deep annoyance in the movement. His tone of voice, though, did not waver.
"Doctor," he said with a sarcastically scathing inflection, "I'd have thought that a student of Aeschylus such as yourself would have a greater apprecation for the fact that I am trying to read."
Dr. Sansky was stunned into silence, partly by the biting comment, and partly by the sounding of the Red Alert klaxon. Copperpot got up and sealed the door and opened the weapons' closet, withdrawing a phaser rifle. He then laid it on the desk, put his feet up over it, and resumed his reading.
-Ensign Chester Copperpot
"The 'Token Bitey' victim in the Staff Meeting"
by Lt Kira Murphy - General Medicine & Paediatrician
Since Lt jg Jamieson was currently in Sickbay and not in a condition to attend, Kira was going on along instead to the meeting, even though it meant that she would be dodging her counselling session. Also, she thought it would be useful to have someone in attendance who had been bitten before and she already had one of the Vulcan docs check her for alien mind influences. At the moment, the poor doctor was trying to expunge the emotions that had been picked up in Kira's freaky mind.
She was late because she had been doing some research in the computers and knew she had to hurry up now so she rushed down the corridor. Braking hard before the door, she quickly entered and picked a seat at one end, passing by her CO as she did. Ignoring the stares at the chain of garlic she was wearing around her neck, Kira stopped next to him, she leant over and whispered to him,
"Autumn has woken up and is under watch. She seemed like she was in pain and upset, so I don't think she should be on duty for awhile. We can talk to her after this is over."
He nodded and she continued to her seat, which happened to be opposite to the massive 7'6" Gorn. Over in the far corner furthest from Price, she saw a short grey haired man with glasses was trying to look inconspicuous. Deciding not to dob the poor guy in, Kira just winked at him, noting his reaction and how he mumbled something into the top of his uniform top.
Grinning, she spoke across the table, "Hey, Seth. Nice to see ya. Bet this beats guarding the brig."
Turning to one of the junior officers that had come along, she whispered, "What's been going on?"
"Umm.. Why are you wearing garlic cloves around your neck? They smell vile."
"So I don't get bitten again."
The officer shrugged and quickly informed Kira of all the suggestions. She didn't totally agree with the final two solutions that they had come up in the Medical meeting, especially about beaming people around without their consent. However, it would be quite amusing if the program somehow decided to beam people NOT aroused onto the bridge randomly. Maybe, she could point the blame at Corgan?
Nodding, Kira realised that maybe her silly garlic chain may help. To get everyone's attention (even though the smell would do more then anything else, Kira coughed before speaking,
"I have an idea, but don't know if it will help much.. Normally when someone gets bitten, there is some sort of tissue residue left on and in the victim. While we can't visually see the evidence, maybe we could find some on one of the people who are bitten and use it to create an anti-Sanguinarian vaccine.. Like this garlic for instance."
"In the quarters"
by Dr. Lt. JG Vladimir Malgin
"Personal log of Lt. JG Vladimir Malgin. Damn! This reminds me our previous mission - sickbay is full of work. But will somebody tell me, how to deal with our loved guests? They are vampires, yes? Yes... How people were dealing with vampires in middle-ages? Aspen sticks into the heart? Garlic? Kill on the crossroad? Holy water?.. What we have on board? Aspen grove? No. Crossroad? No. Holy water? (smiles) No - only coca-cola. Garlic? Well, it is the only thing that we can find at ease. Computer, end of personal log entry."
Vladimir stood up from the coach and headed to his old friend - 20th century computer. He turned it on and started searching for good game. "Quake? No! I fed enough with real quakes... FIFA 2002? NO! This ball is already making me vomiting... Ah-ha!!! Ye olde Warcraft 2000: Nuclear Epidemic. Just what I wanted!"
He opened CD box and inserted disk into the CD-ROM. Game installed fastly and he quickly pressed 'Enter' upon starting file.
==2 hours later==
Vladimir thrown mouse into the corner of the room. He was angered like devil, if not even more. It is easy to understand his feelings -whole game he was developing greatly and in one moment his whole city with every mage, soldier or peon was destroyed by direct hit of MIRV Nuclear rocket. One huge BOOM and 'Game over' screen: what gamer needs more to feel hate on whole world?
"What I need now? I need to cover this defeat!.. By... Yes! By big glass of russian vodka! Big-big glass! Big like 27th level of DOOM-II! Not a bit less! However... I don't want to sit in the brig for assaulting captain, XO, CMO and others... (groan) Computer, glass of apple juice!"
Written while listening "Spanish Caravan" by The Doors
Lt Cmdr Mike O'Grady
Major Gen George S Patton US Army
Field Marshall Erwin Rommell Afrikakorps Gen Omar Bradley US Army
General Robert E Lee Commander Army of Northern Virginia CSA General William T Sherman US Army
Time: Prior to and up to the red alert
OOC Note: you will forgive any errors, I'm not a military historian, and any one who wants to join lemme know, after red alert that is
The twins were sleeping, Nikki was in school and Rayna told him to go, he had been working from home, and taking a limited number of sessions in the office. It had been nice to take care of his family help out around, but she was right, too much time together can drive someone nuts.
So he would use the time to study something he did enjoy, history, tactics and the study of them. It was an odd dichotomy for the counselor to enjoy military history, but he didn't see it that way, up untill the time with Nikki's biological father he had enjoyed combat on the holodeck as an exercise, usually gladiatorial games of some time, but the few times he did go to the holodeck to try and swordfight he kept seeing the body of another human being collapsing to the deck and leaking it's lifes blood in to the sands.
Stepping in to the holodeck he wanted to study a large battle of the dominion war, and see what the tactical geniuses of the 9th and 20th centuries thought of it.
"Computer run tacitcal program O'Grady Alpha three." The computer chirped and complied, in front of them was a starfleet standard 'sand table' was the old term for it there was some long term for it but he had forgotten it a while back.
Several figures appeared in front of them in a varying degree of uniforms, the heavy leather jacket and helmet of General George S Patton to the tailored and grey uniform of General Robert E Lee. Mike had set this program up a while back, all knew english, and were familar with the changes.
It was risky to do that, but he knew if they didn't know about the advances of the years it would be an odd request.
"Gentlemen, thank you again for your time."
General Rommell Stepped foreward, and gave a proper german response, click the heels and a formal half bow, "herr O'Grady, a pleasure as always." Patton, Bradley and Sherman were less formal, but Lee seemed to copy some of Rommel's old world formality asthey gathered aroudn the table to examine the exercise.
"Ok, the mission today is known as the battle for Betazed, in 2376 the planet of Betazed fell to the Dominion. I've read up the reports and copied the troops and situations, gentlemen we are going to prevent that fall...."
Seeing some of the greatest military minds of the 20th century examine a problem was always something interesting to behold, They were sharing advice and reading over the data he had ready.
"So did this dominion land forces?"
Mike nodded, "Yes, several battalions of Jem Hadar soldiers. The public records available are in your files, some of it is classified for obvious reasons I don't have access to those."
Rommel's face took on one of disgust reading about ketracel white, "Ahh, an army of addicts, loyalty by a pill.. a disgrace." Several of the other generals noted that with displeasure.
Ideas had been bantered around, mainly using the smaller defiant class vessels to harry the troopships then setting up pickets to throw the Jem 'hadar off the trail.
Just then he heard a chirp and then the unmistakable voice of Rebecca Von Ernst ..." Um..hello ship.uh..everybody...Uh.This is Rebec.I mean this is the bridge.. R.red alert.uh.if you please. Oh yeah.Captain Price to the Bridge...thanks."
"I see." Rommel spoke. Mike immediately remebered his duty station, "I believe your duty calls you commander."
Mike nodded, "Gentlemen. Good day."
The Generals stepped back and Mike turned to exit the holodeck, "Computer save and end program."
He didn't look back, running off to sickbay to assist with any casualties that came in
"Computer, Personal Log, VanderPuls-Hawksley, Lysander.
The chime of acknowledgement gave Lysander a start. He'd have to find something not so distracting...oh yes...the log...
"Umm....okay....I'm forgetting the smegging stardate here...but this is only what..the sixth entry
I've made since graduating the Academy? Probally I should make more...but who's ever going to hear these? I mean... who really cares? I mean....I'm just me...anyone who REALLY wants to know about my life is probally just writing about Ma or Da... *I* know everything that's happened to me... Anyways....umm....there's not a lot to say about THIS assignment. I mean....well... the Galaxy? She's one of the best ships in the fleet...and the chance to be here is great... I'm liking everyone I've met so far...I guess the Captain...the OLD Captain..on the Saint...err....USS SAINT LOUIS didn't demote me to Ensign...again...after all! She and I didn't really hit it off...but then... before she went nuts she'd only seen me at Captain's Masts...Captain Pierce seems all right...though I REALLY hope I don't end up at HIS Captain's masts.. I hear he's a killer! They won't let me fly her...the Galaxy that is...I'm not in Flight Ops after all...but they're trusting me in Tactical...so that's rather a bit of all right...
The work isn't hard...the TAC and ATTAC officers seem to be all right...the ATTAC officer already seems to think I'm a bit of a lost soul however...they're both redheads...odd that...but I've seen her on the flight simulator holos...and I KNOW I can fly circles around her....maybe....maybe if I listen to Uncle Pieter and buckle down, maybe they'll put me back as a helmsman...The TACCO was at Academy with me...Rebecca von Ernst...don't remember her at all...except old Parr's Celestial Theory Symposium...I remember her stuttering when he asked her about the development of tertiary G5 stellar systems...poor kid...she looks like she's about twelve...never smiles....CADET CLOAKING DEVICE...that's her..."
Lysander's musings were cut short at the chirp of an incoming sublight transmission from Communcations. He put the log on hold and keyed the desk terminal to play the civilian message.
The stern visage of his Uncle Pieter filled the screen, the office behind him that formerly belonging to Lysander's father...
~Oh...bleery SMEG!~ thought Lysander...~ I thought the message at Starbase 114 would be the last for a while...~
"Greetings nephew. I hope this letter finds you well, safe, and not in the brig. Hawksley Defensive Systems quarterly reports follow attached to this missive. Even though you're blocked from your stock dividends, *I* feel you should put an eye to the old family business. I want you to know that the Flight Foundation reports that the old terran F-4 Phantom aerojet that ...*I*... donated on your behalf is malfunctioning again. As the trustee for my brother's estate, I'm authorising it's disposition as a non-flight display piece. I also want to make my annual offer to you, to re-establish your trust fund if..and ONLY if, you cease this foolishness of Fleet service and return to civilian life."
The image of his Uncle's face filled the screen.
~Nice camera work...I wonder who he's paid to film it? Probally some friend of Mother's...That old Phantom was one of the best...too bad...but I'd be rather be DEAD before I give up the chance to be what I can be...~ thought Lysander.
"Now...the official things the lawyers wanted me to say are done. Listen and listen well, Lysander. You've wasted your whole life on those foolish flitters, and when you abandoned them I *had* to donate them, so quit snivelling over their loss. You were too young to have them anyways, as I told your mother, bless her soul, every time she commed me to tell me of your latest folly. Without your trust fund, there's no way you could keep them operational. Seventeen million credits is NOT anything to sneeze at my boy, and if you prove to the Baord of Directors that you can succeed my brother, his salary could support you rather nicely for quite some time. You're not as gormless as everyone tells me you are, so STOP flitting around in that silly uniform, come back home, and DO WHAT YOU WERE BORN TO DO! I don't know what put the damnfool idea of going to the Academy in your head, or why they kept your damnfool tailside there despite EVERY attempt on your part to prove them wrong. I blame that damnfool Admiral Hoth who keeps bothering me ..."
Lysander cut the trannie short.
~No great loss...it'll be more of the same...~ he thought to himself. ~"You're wasting your and the Fleet's time, Lysander, come home and sell parts to the REAL officers..." It's almost like no-one BELIEVES that I can be a Fleet Officer...that I'm NEEDED here!~
With a sigh, he entered his reply. It wouldn't deviate one bit from his last few replies, being audio with no visual.
"Lieutenant Junior Grade Lysander VanderPuls-Hawksley, Tactical Officer USS Galaxy acknowledges receipt of your transmission. Thank you for your advice, Uncle Pieter, however at this time, I think I will continue my career in StarFleet. Best wishes to you, and the staff of Hawksley Armaments and Defensive Systems, Ltd. Much profit and all that rot. Lysander out."
Lysander keyed the terse reply to be sent with the next batch of comm protocols going to Alpha Quadrant.
"Computer, lights to five percent...music...Bach's "Ode to Joy"...oh...and delete all Personal Log entries."
The delicate sound of the harpsichord filled his quarters, as he peered out at the cold, uncaring stars sliding past the hull of the Galaxy. The tear that slid down his smooth cheek was equally cold.
*** *** ***
Lt. j.g. (for the moment)
USS Galaxy, Tatical Officer.
By Lt. Commander Kent Peterson
The transwarp barrier - that being that no faster-than-light object can exceed a speed faster than warp 10 - was a scientific fact that the Galaxy's chief scientist was more than familiar with. So were the majority of Starfleet officers, whether they be from the science, engineering, operations, medical, security, or counseling departments. The only known exceptions to this rule was Borg transwarp technology - technology that the Collective developed a decade ago - and the speed at which rumors traveled on Federation starships.
Nothing was more impressive than how quickly information moved from one end of the Galaxy-class starship to the other. It was not whether or not they were true that mattered, but how even the most lowly ensign knew things that even the senior staff had no chance of confirming. Currently it was the discussion of superhuman vampires roaming the Starfleet vessel and attacking Human, Vulcan, Bajoran, and the other humanoid species on board, lusting for blood. At least that is how Kent heard it as he passed a science officer discussing the matter with a colleague from operations.
The call for an emergency senior staff meeting only seemed to add to the confusion. Peterson had been discussing something on the matter of the Sanguinarian listing in the Tamarian vessel's passenger manifest - whether or not they could confirm something he had been talking about with Captain Price. The anthropologist had heard the rumors also and looked at Peterson when the call came through. For the lieutenant commander it was the unsettling facts that he had been thinking about earlier - including the facts they had and the recent discussions with Price and the other senior staff - which added credence to the concern.
Were the Sanguinarians vampires? Possibly. It was almost as likely that they had embraced the vampiristic persona. It was something they had seen across other species. One of the most melodramatic of these was the appearance of the omnipotent Q of the Q Continuum. Q was renowned for dressing up at mid-20th century American soldiers, 23rd century Starfleet admirals, and 21st century courtroom judges - attempting to provide some form of visual assertion to his superior ego. He was not the first, no was he the last either. Perhaps the Sanguinarians had similar psychological needs that were being met with the vampire legends of several worlds. The most impressive things though, was how far these legends spread. None of the worlds were necessarily linked by a common trade or cultural link.
Were the Sanguinarians some form of humanoid parasite? This was a biological explanation that Kent favored the most, should it be shown that the Sanguinarians were indeed attacking his fellow crewmembers, and, as Lieutenant MacAllen's research indicated the link, for the purpose of extracting blood. It was, for the chief scientist, a large leap of faith until now. The idea of accepting the incredible idea of a vampire was not something he was willing to do. The thought of a humanoid species that required chemical components from another organism was. Paracistism was one of those initial concepts they covered at the Academy in the first year of the science course. It was a normal biological interaction that every world seemed to have an indigenous example. Going that further step and accepting something supernatural, like Rose and Wilhelm seem to have done, was not something he could do. It was simply not in Kent's nature to do so - how could a man accept something he did not believe in when there was a perfectly normal, scientific explanation.
If it had a body - the sign of a corporeal being - then they could be trapped and contained. It also generally meant that they could be tracked and identified as well, but until he had heard what the Security and Tactical departments had to say, he wanted to hold off with recommending specific changed to the internal sensor array. Even though Science had no jurisdiction over internal sensors - which really seemed to be the domain of the Security department - he would be quite happy to have his sensor specialists assist the new security chief in their search for these 'vampires'.
Peterson stopped in front of the turbolift doors located along the primary turbolift shaft. Pressing the button he waited for a carriage to arrive.
But what was running through Peterson's mind was his own thoughts. The facts were the facts. How would they change after the senior staff meeting?
"Bridge," he said, walking in to the turbolift carriage.
The doors closed behind him and the carriage began to hum gently as it took the scientist to the Bridge where he and the other senior staff were going to discuss the latest situation.
with unauthorized stuff from lots of other ppl.
So far as Rebecca was concerned, the Command Crew of the USS Galaxy was a bunch of foul-talking 'Potty-Mouths'.
Some how the subject of conversation had denigrated from the situation at hand to a philosophical discussion into the sexual practices of the crew in general.
"...will allow us to keep accurate tabs on anyone who is aroused. " Doctor Dothan was explaining in blunt detail, ".and not in the company of another living being, and possibly beam them to sickbay, or hold them in the transporter buffers until security can detain them."
Price was nodding at the suggestion, but expressed a few concerns regarding the monitoring of his crew's sexual habits.
Most of the others around the polished black table agreed it would be difficult to implement a so-called 'horny-detector' , but insisted that the sex-connection' seemed to be a primary common-link in all the Alien attacks up to this point."
For shy little Rebecca however all this explicit talk was doing nothing more than embarrassing her to pieces.
"Ensign Hotash has related that she remembers being stretched out on her bed and stripped bare before being ravished for hours upon end.."Across the table Doctor Dothan continued to explain in the coldly clinical fashion that only a physician could relate. "Scans don't seem to correlate with any recent vaginal penetrations or abrasions, but the blood-loss symptoms are unmistakable."
Rebecca buried her head in her tiny little hands attempting to hide the deep crimson blush that worked its way across her freckled cheeks and into the tips of her pert little ears.
~~~.recent vagi..vagi..whatever.penetrations!!???!!! ~~~ her mind reeled at the shock of it all, not even able to repeat the shocking language in her thoughts. ~~~If my mother heard this she'd take a bar of soap to the lot of them, and wash out their mouths.~~~
This random though of her mother reminded her, that Ms. Holli von Ernst was indeed on board the Galaxy somewhere enjoying a rare visit with her Space-faring daughter, but unfortunately the current crisis seemed to have spoiled any plans for catching up on old times.
~~~Oh Momma,~~~ Rebecca fretted, ~~~Everytime we try to get some time together something pops up..You have to sit in Ten Forward all by your lonesome,and I have to listen to trash-talking Magoo here..~~~
"In the male crewmembers." Andree droned on unabashed, "The sudden surge of blood into the reproductive tissues thus initiating the sexual response could be monitored by internal sensor scans..."
Rebecca gurgled and stuck her fingers in her ears blocking out the rest of the sentence. As shocked as she was to hear about Ensign Hotash's erotic fantasies, the thought of performing a sensor scan for .. guys 'things' was too much to bear.
"I'm sorry Lieutenant," Price inquired, his attention drawn by the redhead's squirming, "Did you have an input on the proposed scanning methods?"
Blushing even further, Rebecca fidgeted in her over-large chair and tried without success to turn invisible.
"Um.er..ah.n.n..no Captain. Just...uh..no sir..no input." The Tactical Officer's reply was as crisp and concise as always..which was to say not at all, but at least it seemed to satisfy Price who seemed ready to change the subject.
~~~Whew...dodged that bullet..I wonder how much more 'yukky-mouthed' they can get.~~~ Rebecca breathed in relief.
"Actually," Dr. Dothan interrupted her thought, "Perhaps the Ms. Von Ernst could give me a hand with tailoring our scans towards the sexual arousal patterns of the female members of the crew? Perhaps a woman's insight into sex and sexuality would be helpful."
~~~ Noodles.yeah that's one way for it to get worse..make my non-existent sex drive the subject of a shipwide security alert...great.~~~
Dr. Kira Murphy, the crazed physician who had only an hour earlier physically assaulted Rebecca on the bridge thought that was a great idea. "Excellent!" The buxom physician exclaimed. "We could use Rebecca as a baseline for our scanning model and thus be able to significantly increase our accuracy rating. It should be simple..Rebecca you know how it is with us women.
~~No~~ Rebecca's mind disagreed islently
"You know how our desires and fantacies can overwhelm us."
"How that tingling sensation starts at the base of the skull and then floods the body with its warm aura.."
"That itch you just have to scratch.."
"How you just have to find a man and ..."
"EWW YUK NO!" Rebecca squealed in disgust, pushing her chair back from the table a bit, surprising all present with her sudden movement.
"Oh," Kira seemed disapointed, "Well I'm sure we can show you how to.
Fortunately for Rebecca, Captain Price cleared his throat in interruption. He had other ideas about how to proceed. "Interesting hypothesis Doctor, but for the moment I require Lieutenant von Ernst's services on the bridge. Until we leave Warp, and are able to consult Cetacean Ops regarding a Nav fix, she seems to be our best bet keeping track of where we are headed at the moment."
Everyone nodded. The startling revelation that the Galaxy was heading for the Galactic Barrier that separated the Milky Way from the deep of intergalactic space was a troubling notion at best.
A hundred years ago another Starship under the famed Captain Kirk had attempted the same feat with less than desirable results. Although the official record listed Commander Gary Mitchell as having died in the line of Duty, the urban legends about Starfleet Academy whispered of something far more sinister as having occurred.
What indeed was going to happen next?
"Brainstorm session - part II" ( the revised Editor's cut :p )
by Captain Robert Edward Lee Price
*** Cargo bay ***
The outside of the alien suspension chamber had begun to bead up in droplets of condensed water. The thawing of the chambers from the malfunction of the power supply was causing the condensation. As the air thickened into water droplets, it would find its way down the sides of the roughly casket shaped containers until it pooled up on the floor.
~~Poor Snowy is on the loose getting into gosh knows what on the ship, and I'm stuck here babysitting these defrosting Popsicles until someone shows up to take over.~~ Ozwald thought.
Taking a hand, he wiped away the transparent section and gazed at the lovely, woman that slept inside. Her face was angelic-like and she seemed to be simply sleeping lightly rather then in a state of suspended animation.
While Ozwald was admiring the young lady's beauty, the help he had summoned finally arrived.
"Say Ozzy, how's it hangin'?" Nilani greeted in her typical charming fashion.
Ozwald glanced over and gave a slight smirk. "Charming as ever I see Lieutenant Kahn."
Nilani wasn't phased in the least. She actually enjoyed mixing things up with the men on board the ship. Most of them were inept fools when it came to dealing with an assertive woman that wanted nothing to do with them. "So what happened here, you accidentally kick the plug out of the wall or something Ozzy?"
"No. I'll have you know it was only by chance that I even wondered in here. Actually I was looking for my pet pig, Snowy, have you seen him?" Ozwald asked.
Nilani shook her head. "Can't say that I have. But if it's pigs you are looking for, I'd suggest heading for ten forward. The place is crawling with them there." She smiled while opening her tool kit to extract a tricorder.
"Well now that you're here, if it's all right I have to go find Snowy." Ozwald excused himself.
"Oh sure, leave the gooey mess for the engineers to clean up. Men, you are all alike!" Nilani teased.
Ozwald shook his head. "See you around Lieutenant..."
"Anytime Ozzy." Nilani smiled. She watched as the Tac officer exited and then turned her attentions to the four alien suspension chambers that were all in the process of thawing. Taking the tricorder, Lieutenant Kahn ran a quick scan. "Looks like the internal relays have overloaded. No way of fixing those. It appears the power fluctuation has caused the units to start an automatic thaw cycle..." Nilani moved around the coffin shaped units, continuing her scans. "I estimate the occupants will revive within three or four hours tops."
While the blonde bombshell of an Engineer was busy taking her scans and talking to herself, Doctor Harper, one of the few civilian Doctors on board the Galaxy, entered.
"Oh, this won't do at all!" Harper harped. "These units are in a thaw process."
Nilani placed her hands on her hips and rolled her eyes. "No duh..."
Harper looked at the female engineer very seriously, "You don't understand. These occupants are carriers of a deadly, contagious disease. If their stasis is violated, the entire ship is at risk."
"Well, there is nothing we can do about that I'm afraid. The internal power relays have been fused which triggered the thaw process. These babies will be opening up like clam shells in a few hours by my estimates." Nilani explained.
"Then we need to do something to protect the ship." Harper stated looking at the four units.
"We can erect a containment force field to contain the biogenetic contamination to this area of the cargo bay." Kahn suggested.
Harper shook his head. "But there is no guarantee that will protect the crew. We can't even get clear readings on these Sangrianians, let alone the diseases that infect them."
Nilani crossed her arms. "Then we can always lock onto them and beam them out into space. That's guaranteed to do the trick." she smiled.
Harper stopped what he was doing and looked at Lieutenant Kahn dead in the face. "We can't do that. It would be murdering these innocent people."
"Hey, the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few." Nilani shrugged.
"No. I'm a doctor. I've taken a vow to 'do no harm'. That option is simply unacceptable." Harper stated flatly.
"Hey, sounds like a personal problem if you ask me." Nilani flipped back.
"How can you be so callous Lieutenant?" Doctor Harper asked.
"Hey, life's a bitch and so am I." Nilani grinned.
"Well, that is good and fine but it still doesn't help resolve this problem now, does it Lieutenant?" Harper pointed out.
"I can always get started on that containment field Doctor, unless you have any other bright ideas?" Nilani asked.
"Oh, very well. We will just have to hope it's enough to contain the disease." Harper agreed while returning to his scans.
"Now you're sounding reasonable Doctor. I'll set it up." Nilani nodded while moving to arrange the containment field.
*** Executive Staff Conference Room ***
Taking the opportunity to take the attention off the skittish Von Ernst, Karyn chimed in. "I personally could care less about whining from our crew about the bracelets if it meant they were going to be safer because of them. A loss of privacy is not that much of a sacrifice when you consider not everyone was lucky to survive an encounter with the Sanguinarians," she paused for a moment, thinking about Linda Lilito. "Unfortunately, even if we could detect sexual arousal via the bracelets, I'm not sure it would be enough. They could drain someone dry right in front of us and without being able to detect them, we wouldn't be able to do a damn thing. What we need is a way to keep from being targets until they're caught. Without sufficient nutrients, they'd be forced to deal with us. What about using some sort of mood suppressant to keep everyone's emotions on a more even keel, something that would keep the crew from becoming excitable? They seem to feed off strong emotions just as much as anything else."
Shinta had been listening in her office. Since she started treating James, she had been giving this a problem a lot of thought. It had even made her think about the old legends on Bajor. And then rerunning the tape with James session again, A thought hit her. So she pressed the call button.
["Lieutenant Commander Navarre-Maxwell here, sirs."] She said. ["The mind is the key, I think. Karyn, I mean, commander Dallas is on the right track. Aside from blood being taken from the victims, there are no signs of violence on them. They do it all by mind control, and we have to strengthen our minds against them. Maybe then they won't be able to have a hold on us."] Shinta felt nervous. It was the first time she had spoken up in a meeting of this level , and she hoped she had not said something stupid.
"Well then, maybe that would be a better thing to scan for. Blood loss rather then arousal." Doctor Dothan piped in.
Lee gave a nod. "Aye, that sounds like a reasonable thing to do. I'm still not too sure how effective the bracelets would be, but it's something to consider. Thank you 'Commander."
Glancing across the conference table, the Captain jogged his chin in the direction of Seth. "I asked Lieutenant' Zonhieb here to tell you all of the two encounters he experienced with our Sanguinarian guests. We ran into them just a short time ago." Lee stated massaging his shoulder and adjusting his jaw slightly, "It was a rather, eye opening experience. Mister Zonhieb?"
Seth filled everyone in on his two encounters with the visitors. As he was finishing up his reports of the encounters, the Gorn added, "I can find them. I can practically smell them anywhere on the ship."
"That must be what the doctor meant by more organic." The captain commented. "We still have the trouble of getting rid of them."
"They attacked Lt. Darkstar and seemed to control how solid they are. When I bit one they couldn't fade out." Seth explained.
"Cri-key!" the captain knew a gem of information when it was presented. "I don't think they will let you get close enough to bite them again."
"I could try sir." The gorn always seemed ready to do his duty.
"Let see what everyone else has." Price said and turned to the rest of the table. "Maybe there's another way."
Glancing around, he could see that the Elyasian Doctor, Lieutenant Murphy, had entered and looked like she had something to contribute. Lee didn't bother commenting on the necklace of garlic cloves Kira wore around her neck. "You have something 'mate?"
"I have an idea, but don't know if it will help much... Normally when someone gets bitten, there is some sort of tissue residue left on and in the victim. While we can't visually see the evidence, maybe we could find some on one of the people who are bitten and use it to create an anti-Sanguinarian vaccine... Like this garlic for instance." Kira suggested.
Turning to Doctor Dothan, the Captain asked, "How about that Doctor? Does it sound like a possibility?"
Andree nodded. "We are running a full autopsy on Linda..., that is Lieutenant Liito, now Captain. If there is any sort of biological or chemical residue that is in her system from the attack that killed her, we will find it."
"Excellent Doctor. Keep me advised of your progress." Lee nodded. Checking his chronometer, the Captain wondered where the rest of the senior officers were. Particularly Commander Thomas who had pretty much been dogging it for the entire mission.
Glancing over to the bored looking Chief Helmsman, the Captain asked, "So what are your thoughts about all this 'Commander Gustavson?"
Ragnald looked over at the Captain. "That's hard to say sir. But I have noticed something odd about Rose - Lieutenant McAllen. Since she came back from the away mission, I found her a little bit scared and worried. Seems as if she reacts quite different from other crewmembers. I wonder if that is caused by the pregnancy or by her Betazoid heritage?"
The Captain again looked over to Dothan. "Doctor?"
"It's certainly an interesting observation 'Commander. It would definitely warrant having Lieutenant McAllen report to sickbay to undergo some tests. Having been in close proximity with the visitors, she may very well have been affected by them somehow." Andree agreed.
"I'll make sure she drops by after the meeting Doc." Ragnald nodded.
With another glance at his chronometer, the Captain shook his head slightly. "I was hoping 'Commander Elaithin would be here by now to give a security report. But I suppose he's busy trying to locate our guests as we speak."
Clearing his throat slightly, Mister Savat, the Chief Operations Officer and former Chief of Security offered his insights. "While I am no longer Chief of Security Captain, I do feel qualified to making suggestions in this area if it would be permissible."
The General made a motion to the Vulcan with his hand. "Please do 'mate."
"Our guests appear to be impervious to our weaponry and to our sensory devices. From what I've been able to ascertain from the stories of encounters with the Sanguinarian guests, they have a total disregard for our ability to stop them. On more then one occasion, they have referred to our crewmembers as simply being cattle. That may be an accurate analogy given their ability to resist our normal means of defending ourselves."
Lee nodded, "I don't know if I like the sound of where this is going 'mate. Are you saying we are doomed to fail? That there is no way we can stop these aliens from feeding off our people at will?"
Before the Vulcan had a chance to answer, Lieutenant Commander Elaithin came hurrying into the conference room. When everyone turned to look, the Captain gave a slight acknowledgement, "Commander.", while wondering where the others were at. "You look a little pale..."
"My apologies for being late, Captain. I was getting a blood transfusion in sickbay." Elaithin explained while taking a seat. "Sanchez and I ran into Lilith and Vlad, sir. Unfortunately, they cleaned our clocks. I can't recall much of the encounter than the oddest feeling that I got interrupted in the middle of sex when Rebecca's voice came over the loudspeaker, calling a Red Alert." The chief stated while looking in Von Ernst's direction.
"M..my voice?" the Tactical Officer asked shocked at hearing her name and 'sex' mentioned in the same sentence by someone.
"Yeah - thanks, by the way. I get the feeling you saved me from a lot further harm. Sanchez wasn't so lucky. Sickbay said she'd lost several pints of blood, but there's no evidence of where it was lost from. Nor on me."
"Just like the other patients." Dothan murmured.
Elaithin nodded. "But I have found something interesting. In the mythos of at least three different cultures, Humans, Klingons, and Bajorans, the Sanguinarian's behavior and abilities smack of legendary creatures. We call them Valta Wraiths. I can't pronounce the Klingon word. But you humans call them... vampires."
The Captain nodded, taking this chance to get things back on track with the meeting. "Aye. We have been discussing the similarities 'mate. In fact 'Commander Savat here was just making a point about our guests when you entered." Lee stated looking over at the Operations Manager. "Please 'mate, as you were saying?..."
"I'm simply making an observation Captain." Savat stated. "The Sanguinarians have not been stopped by physical attacks from Lieutenant Zonhieb, nor from phaser attacks from yourself or others on the ship. To borrow Mister Elaithin's colloquialism, the guests have 'cleaned the clocks' of everyone they have encountered thus far on board this vessel."
"Not everyone." Seth protested stubbornly while crossing his Gorn arms. "At least not the first time..."
"Aye. I can attest to our guest's toughness. Level ten at point blank and it seemed to pass right through them like they were not really there at all." The Captain agreed. "Though there is one nasty scorch mark on the opposite end of the corridor where the blast did land, so I know it wasn't some sort of mind trick or dampening field that neutralized the weapon's output."
"Precisely Captain." Savat nodded. "What needs to happen is first we need to locate the visitors."
"Isn't it quite that easy? We just have to hunt anybody or anything we can't see? What happens to somebody wearing a night visor? Do these devices display the Sanguarians? They are a kind of sensor, aren't they?" Lieutenant Commander Gustavson asked with a hint of sarcasm.
As the Flight Control Officer asked the question, Lieutenant Commander T'Zaq came walking into the conference room to speak for Engineering while Lieutenant Commander Suder was in sickbay after a recent attack in Engineering.
"It may be possible 'Commander. We will not know until we try." The Vulcan Assistant Chief Engineer stated while taking a seat. Looking at the Captain, T'Zaq added, "Sorry for the delay Captain. I got here as soon as I was able to."
"No worries 'mate." Lee smiled. "While you are here, we may as well get a report on our situation with the ship."
"Of course Captain." T'Zaq agreed. "We are presently traveling at warp eight on a course that will take us out of this galaxy. The visitors have somehow tampered with the computer systems and inserted a program of their own design. Our efforts to defeat it have thus far proved ineffective."
Again Lieutenant Commander Gustavson had a sarcastic response to this news; evidently the Chief's way of dealing with all the pressures of being a department head during a crisis situation. "For Donar's sake can't we just somehow pull the plug? I can't believe there is no failsafe function to stop this masterpiece of Starfleet engineering."
Glancing over at the human Flight Control Officer, T'Zaq responded in an even, Vulcan tone. "A shutdown of the ship's computer core would disable every system on board the ship 'Commander. That would include systems necessary for maintaining livable conditions such as life support and gravity generation." Turning towards the Captain, T'Zaq added, "It may be possible to manually eject the warp core which would effectively drop us out of warp."
"Aye, that would do it alright." The Captain agreed. "But I am not ready to tank the main engine of the ship just yet. There still may be a way to regain control of the computer systems by defeating this program that has been inserted. We will keep the warp core ejection plan as a backup if it comes to it."
"I would agree with that assessment Captain." T'Zaq nodded sagely.
"Well that still leaves us with the problem of what to do with these blood suckers once we manage to find them." Gustavson stated.
"I may have an answer to that Captain." Mister Savat stated evenly.
All eyes turned towards the Operations Manager.
"Well let's hear it 'mate." The Captain asked.
"If everyone will recall when we first encountered our Sanguinarian guests, Lord Vlad protested against Commander Thomas' suggestion of using the transporters to beam them on board the Galaxy from the Tamarian vessel."
"Cri-key! That's right 'mate. I'd forgotten about that. We had to send a shuttle over to ferry them on board."
"Exactly Captain. Lord Vlad had warned that the transporter somehow would be harmful to Sanguinarians. That information may help us in devising a weapon that would be effective against our guests." Savat explained.
"It's certainly worth giving a try. Heck, if we could get them in a transporter beam, we could even just leave them in suspension until we figured out what to do with them." The Captain acknowledged. Glancing over to Lieutenant Commander T'Zaq, Lee asked, "What do you think 'mate?"
T'Zaq gave a slight nod. "If we were to configure the transporter for a wide area field, with a broad enough spectrum, we might be able to capture the Sanguinarians in a beam without the need for establishing a pattern lock. It would require some preparation, and a laying of a sort of trap, since such a wide area target couldn't be arranged rapidly enough for use site to site throughout the ship."
"So somewhere like Ten Forward or a Cargo bay or something. We set up the transport, lure our vampiric friends into the target area and snag them in a transport beam." The Captain elaborated.
"In theory, yes Captain." Mister Savat stated.
"That sounds reasonable." The Captain agreed. "How soon can we get that set up?"
T'Zaq glanced over at the Captain. "If we use the cargo transporter and it's wide area beam, I can probably override the computer controls and manually have the transporter operating in about thirty minutes."
"Bonzer 'mate. Now we are making some progress." Lee agreed. Glancing over at Ragnald, the General commented, "Now that we know what we are going to try once we locate our guests, we can return to the how of locating them."
"Like I said earlier Captain, I can smell the visitors very strongly." Seth reminded.
Glancing over to Doctor Dothan, the Captain asked, "Why do you suppose that is Doctor? I mean if Mister Zonhieb can smell our guests, then surely there must be a way of configuring a tricorder or other sensory device to act in the same way and be an effective tool for tracking their movements about the ship?"
"We might be able to Captain. What I can do is check the databanks on the Gorn sense of smell. That might turn up something that will be useful in detecting the Sanguinarians." Andree stated.
"Fair dinkum Doctor." Lee nodded. Glancing at his chronometer one more time, the General shook his head slightly wondering what became of Commander Thomas and Lieutenant Commander Peterson.
"Well, anyone else have something they'd like to add that might be useful?" the Captain asked.
'Wraith of the Hotheaded Hottie'
By Lieutenant jg. James Lionel Corgan, Operations Officer
And Lieutenant Kira Murphy, Medical Officer
Sickbay became a more tolerable place.
The doctors regained the spring in their step. They saw hope where none existed before. Patients were being attended to without the downtrodden and forlorn attitude. The patients looked healthier, if looking at the pale unconscious faces of the stricken indicated improved health status. The atmosphere was lightened up enough to give sickbay a less despairing feeling.
It was all thanks to a lone man on a biobed, and his guitar.
He didn’t know if his guitar was having an effect on the people around him, and to him, it didn’t matter. He was enjoying the instrument, plucking it strings and savoring its soft, soothing music.
But enough was enough. Eventually, Corgan had to take a break from the playing. His fingers were a little sore without the guitar pick to aid him. His throat was feeling hoarse, most likely an after effect of the blood loss. He couldn’t argue with to excuses to get out of bed and stretch his legs. He dropped out of his biobed and searched for sickbay’s only replicator. He spotted the unit on a far wall, being neglected by the nurses and doctors. He walked to the replicator, and with a scratchy voice, he asked “Water”. The replicator swirled its pattern, creating a ready made glass filled to the top with the clear liquid.
He grabbed his cup of water and drank deeply. The scratchiness of his throat eased and the coolness of the glass relaxed his fingers. Feeling much relieved, he headed back to his biobed, seeing a strange, pissed off doctor raise the guitar high into the air.
“Take this you pathetic scum!” She screamed.
“What the hell?” Corgan asked, perplexed at the strange woman. She turned her face, and at first glance, James recognized the woman. ~”Lt. Kira Murphy, resident troublemaker, pediatric doctor… oh my god… don’t tell me she’s pissed about the guitar.”~
"Good. I wanted you to see this." Lt. Kira grinned maniacally.
“Wait! You don’t understand… don’t!” Corgan ran over to stop the crazed woman. She brought the guitar down on the hard edge of the biobed. The main body of the guitar smashed easily from the Elaysian’s swing. Bits of balsam wood and plastic scattered from the impact. She whacked the guitar a second time, destroying the rest of the instrument and leaving only the neck, a dangling piece of wood and frayed guitar strings.
“Try and play that now."
James rolled his eyes back and sighed, “You know, you didn’t have to go about destroying your own guitar. I saw it on the pediatric ward and I wanted to play some songs. I’m sorry if you didn’t want me to take it out of there, but really… did you have to go and break it? It was a Gibson Melody 2354. That was a good year for acoustics. How can you destroy a guitar like that?”
Holding up the neck like a sword, Kira snapped, "You deleted Lassie, you slime!!"
“Lassie! You deleted my dog you bastard!”
He recalled for a minute the unlucky golden retriever whom he sent to electronic oblivion. His feeling on holograms were not totally insensitive. He thought of the animals as nothing more than cute entertainment programs, until a certain dog tried to stop him from exiting sickbay. According to ship protocol, he and anybody else was authorized to remove any threats or obstacles that had the potential to impede the officer for an extended period of time. Not only that, the holograms ‘die’ every time they are disengaged. Only the backup memory is updated and put into a newly created holocreature.
In short, he thought Kira was making a big deal over nothing. The dog went through what every hologram experienced, minus the backup memory of approximately ten seconds.
“Your point, if I may ask?” James flatly asked.
"You destroyed the Lassie program totally - someone that we all cared for a lot."
“It’s a fraggin’ holographic mutt for Christ sakes.” James smacked his hand onto his forehead and nodded with his head tilted low.
"No, it was not just a normal hologram to the children and you didn't just shut it down - you deleted it, you moron. I wrote all the Paediatric Ward ones to remember all the problems that the children have and react to them corretly, and now the next time one of the children come in and Lassie doesn't remeber, they are going to be upset. Luckily, I do daily backups, but we lost a day of info!"
“Look, if you really want an apology, fine. I’m game. I guess I could have just disengaged the hologram like the other ones that got in my way. I am very sorry. I stepped over the line. I should not have deleted your dog. I’ll even replace the acoustic guitar if you want, to make up for what I did. Deal?” He turned to his somewhat questionably effective charm and calm demeanor to save himself from the hotheaded Elaysian.
Ready to actually deck James with a fist, she was about to attack when she realised that he did seem a little bit sorry.
Also, with her record, decking another officer would probably get her another lecture from either Andree, Cmdr Thomas or even worse - both of them plus the Captain.
James saw her reaction and stepped a few feet back, not out of fear, but to give him a good position to counter any punch with an armdrag. He loathed to hurt anyone, especially women. He also didn’t like being hit by a doctor, or all people. One had to give way to the other. He kept a sharp eye on her clenched fists.
"Yes if you don't EVER go in there again or delete people's programs. And I'm deleting that stupid program you used on Lassie. Before you try anything, I do have ways of finding it no matter what you do to hide it. Meanwhile, I have to go and try to retrieve some lost data."
“What program?” James asked, ”I used my clearance code. It does more than open doors you know. And if you ever messed with that, you'd end up in the brig faster than you can say ‘Corgan Gamma Epsilon Black’. Not to mention the loss of rank, maybe even court martial… it’s not worth it. Now, I apologized. There’s no need to put in any more threats.”
This was Lt. Murphy’s last straw. She was about to renege when he gave her another charming diplomatic smile. The last think she wanted was this smug git to get the better of her.
Growling, she stepped forwards and drove her fist into his stomach. James’s eyes shot up with surprise as the Elaysian took him off guard. The wind knocked out of him as he doubled over slightly. His head faced the carpeted floor as he coughed for air.
“I will threaten whenever I…”
Kira was cut off by James Corgan’s reaction to the stiff hit. His stood up, holding his gut with one hand while waving his finger with the other. “Ok, enough of this nicey nice crap. I will only put up with so much sh*t before I finally decide to do something about it.”
“Oh, what are you going to do, tell on me?” She hissed as she gave him the finger.
“Hehehehehe… tattle? That would be the easy way out, wouldn’t it?” James grinned, “I don’t tattle on people like you. Let’s face it, if I did, you would endanger your career. No, I don’t tell on people when it’s not business. I get even.” His voice took a more grave tone, “I do not tolerate thugs and bullies in any way, shape or freaking form. I put up with enough of them at the academy, and each one paid dearly. Try anything on me again, and I will not sit idle. Now bugger off!”
With that, she stormed back into Paediatrics where she would attempt to retrieve some of the lost data.
"Someone to Turn to."
Petty Officer Tyrola Lomax
Commander Karyn Dallas RN
Chief Counselor/Second Officer
Ty walked into the counselling offices with a tear ready to leave her eye. Yet she managed to hold it back for now. She saw the woman at the desk ahead of her. She inquired quietly and managed to keep her voice stable to her own surprise. When the young woman went off to find someone to come and see her, Ty sat down on the floor against the wall. She felt strangely worn out. This is how she was sat when the woman returned with another.
Karyn moved toward PO Lomax, noting the woman's demeanor. She looked drained physically and emotionally, but was not suffering from the blood loss like an increasing number of the crew. Like Ty, Karyn showed no sign of blood loss, but she had experienced a rather disturbing flashback and she wondered how Tyrola's attack might be related to the blood loss phenomenon going around the ship.
Kristen Opel had told Karyn the circumstances that had brought Ty to sickbay, and upon hearing about the strange behavior of Lt. Mitchell, she decided it warranted further investigation, but in the privacy of her office. "Excuse me, Tyrola? My name is Karyn, please, come with me and we'll talk."
Ty looked up at the counsellor and pushed herself to her feet. "Sure." It was all she could muster to her lips.
Karyn nodded to Emma Marshall at the front desk. "Don't disturb me unless it's an emergency."
When they were alone in the office, Karyn gestured to a chair for her to make herself comfortable.
"Under the circumstances, I thought it best we talk. Can you tell me what happened? I think it might help make some sense out of what's been happening aboard lately."
Tyrola sighed. "I've heard things have been a bit weird, not that I know what 'weird' means just now. Except that James is weird...or is acting so." She was clearly flustered as she spoke and the breaks in her sentences were short. "He tried to...to..." Ty stopped, she couldn't go on. The tear in her eye finally made its way down her cheek and she sighed heavily.
Karyn reached over and pulled a tissue from the table next to the chair Ty was sitting in and handed it to her. "I know this is hard to talk about, but I need to know exactly what happened. I don't know what's happening aboard ship right now, but I want to assure you you're not the only one whose witnessed people behaving out of the ordinary. Anything you could tell me could be most helpful. Until recently, people affected by whatever is going on have been alone and couldn't recall much. As an outsider, you might be able to give us the insight we need. You're not being judged here, and nothing you say will leave this room. Take your time."
Dallas moved to the replicator and ordered some ice water for Ty. She wanted her to have the distraction to steady her nerves and also to make sure she didn't get dehydrated. "Is water ok?" she held up the glass.
Ty nodded slowly. "Lovely, thanks." She accepted the water gratefully when Karyn handed it to her. After a few sips she began again. "I was going to see Mr. Mitchell for breakfast before we headed over to the Tamarian vessel - we're working together over there you see - and I was in quite good spirits. And when I arrived James was quite pleasant...but then he...seemed a bit more aggressive."
"He...he..." Ty sipped her water again. "To be quite blunt he physically and sexually abused me, counsellor." Her manner had become somewhat more business-like, the feeling had drained somewhat from her words.
Karyn pursed her lips, knowing the straight forward tone was a defense mechanism meant to relay the information without having to face the emotion that came with it. That would have been fine if she was just on a fact-finding mission, but as a counselor, even though it was understandable, she had to be aware of it and dig a little deeper. Still, it wasn't something she enjoyed, having been where Ty was now, but as a teenager of fifteen.
"I need to know exactly what happened, Tyrola. Did he say or do anything that gave you any idea why he was acting so aggressive?"
"He just seemed...well frustrated, sexually so..." Ty didn't want to go into detail she didn't have to. "He just seemed to want...me..that way."
Karyn listened quietly and noted the vagueness of her answers, something most likely caused by some embarrassment and a lack of trust. She sensed Tyrola had feelings for James that went beyond a professional relationship, and even if this was eventually attributed to their Sanguinarian guests, the relationship between the two of them had been forever changed. Karyn co
uldn't rule this out as an isolated incident given James' emotional problems, and while she wanted to discount the thought immediately, she knew she was never going to know people with as much certainty given the Poets of the world.
"Had James ever shown you any romantic interest prior to the attack? Anything that looking back now made you extremely uncomfortable?"
"No..." Ty raised her eyebrows as she thought. "He never expressed any interest or acted in a way to suggest he was...I dunno, he mighta had feelings but...I dunno."
Karyn nodded her understanding and recalled although Mitchell had had personal problems before, he had never been violent. There was nothing in his profile to suggest he might even become violent. This strange behavior had started after the Sanguinarians had arrived, and it wasn't as if this was the only case of strange behavior she had observed to support her concerns. She wondered if James had experienced the same kind of sexual fantasy or hallucination she had, only in this case it seemed Ty was the innocent bystander. She would have to ask Shinta if James had reported any unusual daydreams or hallucinations which might explain his behavior. For now, she had to focus on the aftermath.
"How about you? How do you feel now? Do you think you need to be here talking to me?"
It was obvious Ty was shaken, but it was also clear there was a lot more left to be said when it came to her feelings about what happened. Whether she was prepared to share them now or ever was of great concern to Karyn at this point, but she needed Ty to know she had choices as long as she was prepared to deal with her emotions in the future. Finding that motivation because it was something she understood she needed and not just procedure, was yet to be seen.
"I...Yes!" Ty broke down again, tears escaped her eyes and ran down her cheeks making delicate patterns. "I just want it all to go away, but it won't and I need someone to help out..." She wiped her face and tried to compose herself a bit better. "I...I'm sorry, counsellor...I just...."
"Just what?" she encouraged gently, then with a pause added, "I know this is hard for you and I'd like to help you face this like you know you need to, but I need you to talk to me if I'm to do that. It's ok if you're not comfortable speaking to me right now, but I'm here to listen and not to judge. I assure you, nothing you say here will embarrass me, or disgust me, or make me believe you've done anything wrong. You're going to have to open up sometime or this is going to eat at you forever. I realize you're still in shock, but talking will help in the long-run I promise."
Can...later?" Ty closed her eyes and took a few deep breaths. "What I mean is, can we leave this for a while - I think...well I don't suppose going to work would be a good idea just now. I would like to go home, lie down for a bit, talk to my room mate and then...maybe later on...I could come back to see you?"
Karyn nodded her head. "Sure, I would prefer that as well. Take all the time you need to sort things out, but I wouldn't recommend ignoring this for too long. I can put you on temporary med leave for awhile and I'll inform Suder. The request doesn't need to specify, so you're covered there, and feel free to get in touch anytime."
Tyrola paused for a moment, taking in what Karyn had jsut said. "Thanks, counsellor, I'll...talk to you later." With that she stood and left in a hurry. She wanted the santuary of her own quarters and a shower to wash the scent of 'that man' off of her.
“The Double Hunt: Who Hunts Who?”
By: Lieutenant Gordon Mattlow
Lieutenant jg T’lan
Ensign Mitchell Hanover
Ensign Jesse White
Ensign Adrian Wittney
“Move your asses! Double time!” Barked the gravelly, tough as nails Lieutenant Mattlow as he slapped a fresh power pack into his type three-phaser rifle. With his command, the Galaxy’s newly formed Rapid Response Unit readied themselved in their makeshift, out-of-the-way office. The teams, consisting of Dominion War veterans and a couple of survivors from the Galaxy’s run in with the Borg, were quick to gather their equipment and mobilize. Ensign Jesse White kissed his holy cross and tucked it into his uniform shirt. Lieutenant jg. T’lan, the former operations officer serving as the squad’s tactical co-ordinator, re-calibrated her tricorder with one hand and pulled out her phaser with the other. Ensigns Adrian Wittney and Mitchell Hanover busied themselves with the preparation of their own sidearms.
This was the team ready to bring the Sanguinarians into custody. They were the equivalent of an old fashioned S.W.A.T. team. If anyone could bring in the ships latest guests, it was Lieutenant Mattlow and his crew of hardened soldiers turned peacekeepers. Lieutenant Mattlow’s brown eyes scanned his crew. The black man from the deep south looked sternly at each person to foster fear and respect.
“Our esteemed guests have escaped. They are the prime suspects in a string of recent occurrences in the ship.” Lieutenant Mattlow reviewed, “There have been reports of people being drained of their blood. One of these incidents has resulted in the death of an officer. Whatever caused this phenomenon may be connected to our guests. Our orders are to apprehend the subjects and escort them to the brig. Is that understood?”
The rest of the squad replied with a chipper, “Yes sir!”
“Good. Any questions?” Lieutenant Mattlow smirked.
“Sir… I have a question?” Ensign Jesse White stammered nervously, “Is there any proof about the rumors… about the Sanguinarians being vampires and all, sir?”
“Why? Scared?” Grinned Ensign Wittney. He laughed wickedly, fingering his phaser rifle like a fragile ornament.
“Button it Twittney.” Mattlow snapped. Ensign Hanover snickered at Adrian’s misfortune, “You too, mullet head!” The squad leader warned, “My oh my… you guys are worse than that psycho who got sent to ops. As for Ensign White’s question, I don’t know what the hell they are. All I know is that they’re screwing around with us on our watch. Contact has already been established by the Captain, Lieutenant Sanchez, Darkstar, Zonheib and our CO. So far, apprehension of the suspects have been unsuccessful.”
“Oh great. If it outfoxed Sanchez, we’re screwed…” Ensign Wittney spoke out of turn.
“You’ll be screwed if you ever talk like that again!” Lieutenant Mattlow growled, “Now back to business, maggots! We’ve been training for a month now as a team. I think it’s about time we showed the ship what we’re made of. You are all part of the USS Galaxy’s Quick Response Unit. You are the biggest, baddest motherf**kers out there. We’re in, we get the job done, and we’re out. The marines ain’t got nothing on us. You hear me?”
“Sir, yes sir.” Everyone spoke in unison.
“Good. You have your orders. The bogey’s have been last reported on deck 10. They’re taking their sweet time getting to where they need to go, so we still have time to apprehend the suspects and go home for dinner. Any questions?”
Ensigns Adrian Wittney and Mitchell Hanover raised their hands.
“Other than Tweedle Dumb and Tweedle Dumber. Any questions?”
Wittney and Hanover both lowered their hands down. Lieutenant T’lan raised her hand.
“Lieutenant, you may speak.” Mattlow permissed.
“Sir, our equipment cannot detect the Sanguinarians. How are we to find our targets?” Ensign T’lan asked.
“According to our latest reports, there is no way to detect our subjects. Therefore, it’s your job to try to find a way to find our guests. T’lan, I want you to try every scanning trick in the book to find these ‘vampires’ as Ensign White calls them. Keep in mind, our guests have evaded the toughest hombre’s in Security. We’re not going to be next on the wall of shame. I want each and every one of you people to keep your eyes peeled and your communicators active. Anything else?”
Nobody raised his or her hand. Lieutenant jg. T’lan was too busy with her tricorder, while the mullet headed Ensign Hanover flicked on his sunshades. Ensign White kept fingering his holy cross while struggling to hold up his phaser rifle. The words ‘The Lord is my light and salvation…’ voiced under Jesse’s breath as Ensign Wittney uttered a sadistic chuckle.
“Alright then… MOVE OUT!”
Deck ten was quiet during the red alert, as the Quick Response Unit stealthily tip-toed their way through the ship. Wittney, White and Hanover took the lead. As one person advanced meters ahead of the others, he would stop. Then, another member would run ahead, followed by another person, and the whole chain would continue. In the rear, Mattlow co-ordinated the search, while T’lan tinkered with the tricorder for any readings.
The setting was eerie enough without the thoughts of vampires entering their minds. The lights were dimmed very low. The beige wall panels looked almost gray in the dull light. Red alert sirens droned mercilessly on their ears as the red alert lights throbbed and pulsated in the oppressive atmosphere.
Ensign White knew something didn’t feel right about this task. He saw the guests once before, exiting a turbolift near sickbay, being escorted by the beefy Seth Zonheib and mentally questionable James Corgan. The vibe he received from the lady Sanguinarian didn’t feel right to him. She was more beautiful than any woman he has ever seen, but he found the intoxicating feelings towards her to be invasive. Now, he was asked to confront the woman who gave him the creeps.
To ease his mind, Ensign White repeated in a whisper, “To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. I trust in you, my God.”
Ensign Wittney noticed his teammate reciting Psalms 25, “Relax…” He sneered, “The only thing you’re going to need to save your ass is that rifle you’re holding.”
“Do not let me be disgraced, or let my enemies rejoice in my defeat. No one who trusts in you will ever be disgraced, but disgrace comes to those who try to deceive others.” Ensign White.
“Suit yourself.” Ensign Wittney shrugged.
The party advanced forward, carefully fingering the triggers on their rifles. Lieutenant Mattlow was worried that his fledgling team would be too trigger-happy. Ensign Wittney had a bad habit of shooting first and asking questions later. Ensign Hanover didn't know when to shut up and he also screamed battle cries in the middle of fights, not to mention the bad habits he picked up from Ensign Wittney. Ensign White easily frightened, and Lieutenant jg. T’lan usually didn’t help others. Was Lieutenant Mattlow worried about his team? Only if they didn’t follow the operation by the book.
“Sir,” Lieutenant T’lan said as the team approached a t-intersection, “I have the tricorder taking readings from the ship’s internal sensors. They tried everything, from phased polaron bursts to wind displacement. There is nothing to show on sensors.”
“Keep trying. They’re somewhere.”Lieutenant Mattlow ordered.
“Alright then, we’ll have to spread out.” Mattlow decided, “Wittney, Hanover, you take the left corridor. T’lan, White, come with me. Move out!”
All of the hunters took their separate paths. Lieutenant Mattlow didn’t see anything to worry about. Two simple aliens, probably disoriented from their displacement in the current present, had to be rounded up and brought back to the brig. Where Sanchez, Darkstar and Zonhieb failed, he was determined to succeed. After all, they were a couple of former frozen bodies a week ago. What harm could they do. He just hoped Ensign Wittley didn’t screw up and take Ensign Hanover with him. The Lieutenant learned the hard way to have such low expectations of this particular officer.
The Ensigns Wittley and Hanover didn’t go very far to leave the squad leader and the other ‘goody two-shoes’ of the party. He enjoyed bugging the Lieutenant, until harsh punishment was brought in. Today, the Ensign was too pre-occupied, using half of his brainpower in a half hearted attempt to search for people, while the other half smiled at finding the right balance of bugging Lieutenant Mattlow without landing both him and Hanover a week worth of plasma duct cleaning.
Out of the corner of his eye, Ensign Hanover spotted in front of him the spitting image of a beautiful woman. Her golden hair shone from her head down to her ankles, highlighting a shimmering white dress. Her crystal green eyes gave the hot and bothered Ensign an inviting wink, as did her sly smile. Ensign Hanover tapped Wittney on the shoulder.
“What is it, mullet head?” Wittney asked using the unfortunate nickname derived from Hanover’s unusual haircut.
Ensign Hanover repeated his pointing motion toward the woman. Wittney took a look for the first time, seeing a whole different image. In his mind, she looked like Risian beach princess. Her skintight red and white surf suit showed off just enough of her tanned arms and legs to encourage a catcall from Ensign Wittney. She almost reminded the officer of a Risian woman he meet during his last shore leave, right down to the brown hair, sharp eyebrows and teasing breasts. If there was anything else Ensign Wittney wanted in a woman, he was too dumbstruck to think of anything missing.
“Hoooo…. Momma. She’s mine, mullet.” Wittney said. He was about to advance on the breathtaking spectacle of beauty until Ensign Hanover gripped his shoulder and flung him into the bulkheads. He turned around as Ensign Wittney aimed his rifle. Hanover gave a self confident smirk and a ‘hmmmfff’, then turned around to meet the woman of his dreams.
“Save some for me, got it pal?” Wittney hissed.
Wittney’s partner was oblivious to anything else but the blonde haired mistress in white that resembled his high school crush. He walked forward, afraid to say anything. There were no words worthy of her. Shakespeare couldn’t do any better. Somehow, the enchanting girl found him, and only him, worthy of her affections. As he felt unworthy of such adoration, the lady in white took his hand and drew him closer.
Wittney himself was angry with his friend. The woman was his and his alone. Friend or not, he was ready to kill the unfortunate bastard for defiling his fantasy woman.
“Do not worry, my dear Wittney…” The Risian surf girl laughed coyly.
Two arms swung Ensign Wittney around. In one swift, claw like swipe and a deafening roar, the rifle was swatted out of his hand like a discarded matchstick. The other hand grappled Wittney faster than he could react to being disarmed, then in one fluid motion both arms held Wittney’s arms fast and solid. He couldn’t move out of the embrace, for the assailant’s hands locked on tight enough to crush if given any more force.
“You vill not be left out…” The voice from behind whispered.
“There is enough to go around…” The surfer girl winked.
“So sit tightly, my dear Wittney. You shalt receive your reward soon enough.”
“Vwatch, and see vat’s coming to you…”
The image of the Risian surfer girl disappeared, replaced by a more sinister image. The woman appeared to be so pale as to take the face of the Grim Reaper himself. The burly arms enfolding his own swirled into ghastly white, gangly appendages. Brown haired turned black in an eyeblink, and green eyes took the hue of a devilish red. The being one thought of as a Risian beach princess was no more. There was only Lady Lilith.
Ensign Hanover still didn’t see the transformation. He was locked in the monster’s embrace. The ghostly woman took perverse pleasure in feeling the Ensign’s every intimate touch. She responded with a cloying touch of her own. Her tongue licked the base of his neck, travelling upwards toward the jugular.
“Wake up, dude. C’mon…“ Ensign Wittley begged.
Then, in a cat like strike, her fangs retracted and punched through Hanover’s pink flesh. Her greedy mouth drank the crimson fluid hungrily. Ensign Hanover moaned, the sound of his pleasure growing weaker as Lilith sucked on his vein. She waited long to feast on another human. Conserving the cattle was not her concern after feeling the blood flow over her lips. She wanted to feast more than anything, livestock be damned.
“NO! Get away from me you sick freaks!” Wittley screamed as loud as he could. The other alien attacker pinned Wittney’s hands with one of his own arms, and covered the screaming officer’s mouth.
“I think we vill save you for later. Your friend vill be enough to slake our hunger for a little while…” Lord Vlad whispered closely into Wittney’s ear. Officer Wittney tried to scream, but the hand shut him out to silence.
His eyes couldn’t stare away from the horror of his best friend being drained of life.
“NO! Get away from me you sick freaks!” Ensign White and Lieutenant T’lan and Mattlow heard from a far corridor. The all-familiar sound of Ensign Wittley was heard calling out in distress. No cockiness was heard in his voice, no snide remarks, not even a self assured laugh. Ensign Wittley sounded like he was really in trouble, or getting better at crying wolf.
Lieutenant Mattlow was not going to take a chance. As much as he hated the annoying punk, he was a team member and nobody messed with his crew.
“Move it! Double time!” He barked. Ensign White ran ahead, with his rifle on heavy stun and a Psalms on his lips. T’lan, in her Vulcan coolheartedness, scanned the suspected location of Wittney and Hanover as she and Mattlow ran. “What have you got for us, T’lan?”
“Nothing,” She responded, double checking the tricorder image of the map location of Wittney and Hanover. She checked electromagnetic, thermal and infra-red images of the location. Wittney and Hanover were the only occupants in the hallway, with the Starfleet insignia’s of Ensign White, T’lan and Mattlow converging. “I have Hanover and Wittney’s signatures. No other intruders have been spotted.”
“Keep trying. We need to get a lock on these bastards.”
T’lan saw the futility in the exercise. Sensors were not able to pinpoint the ‘guests’. She took it on herself to reset her phaser instead, to a random frequency, while linking the frequency data to the tricorder to record effectiveness. It was illogical to waste time on instrument proven to not work in such a situation.
Her finals setting were plugged in. She folded her tricorder and stuffed it back into its holster pouch. For a mere second, her eyes looked down towards the holdster, then back up to keep her bearings. What she didn’t know was her commanding officer froze in his tracks.
Logic dictated the obvious as clearly as if a Betazoid Empath spelled it out to her (*hint hint, Counselor Troi!*). Something was wrong. Her second glance spotted Ensign White, kneeling still with his phaser rifle aimed forward, his mouth spewing out random snippets of religious quotes.
“As I walk into the valley of the shadow of death…” Ensign White quivered.
Her third clue came right in front of her. A further distance still, she saw Ensign Hanover, slumped against the bulkhead of the ship, his head hanging down haplessly as a tall Vulcan woman slinked away from her teammate. She spotted Ensign Wittley being throw away from the scene with a casual push from a handsome, buffed and well tanned Vulcan honor guard. It was her turn to freeze in her own tracks. She couldn’t help but admire the Vulcan man’s glistening bare chest, well built arms, and the grace of his walk. Her blood quickly came to a frightening boil. Somehow, she didn’t feel it was right to lust for the man. Her Pon’farr was due exactly four years, three months, eighteen days, eleven hours and three seconds from the second she saw the man, with at least 98% accuracy of the estimated Pon’farr date.
Mattlow stopped himself from seeing the strange woman’s, dreadlocks and almond dark skin. They had to be the Sanguinarians. Gut instincts honed by years in the trenches of Chin’toka and Setari Two couldn’t be wrong.
“Rifles to heavy stun! Fire!” Mattlow ordered. The last of the Rapid Response Squad snapped out of their trance enough to bring their weapons to bear on the vampires. The rifles and pistol rang out its whining charge, shooting deadly phaser beams at the suspects.
T’lan scored a hit on the Vulcan woman. She watched the phaser beam impact into the woman’s chest. Ensign White and Lieutenant Mattlow sent pulse after pulse of phaser energy into the male. Both victims of the phaser barrage staggered with each blow. The Rapid Response Unit kept the red and gold beams going into the alien vampires. The confidence of the team grew as they saw Lady Lilith and Lord Vlad stagger and grunt in pain.
Lord Vlad cracked a devilish smirk. The rest of the phaser pulses were shook off. Like a spring, he sprung back into action, as healthy as before, and more determined to upstage the annoying gnats. Lilith placed her hand in front of T’lan’s phaser beam. The light of the beam bent away, scorching into the duranium wall panels.
“Hold fire!” Mattlow panicked. The other officers didn’t need to be told. They already stopped shooting at the Sanguinarians. Oddly enough, as they stopped firing, the vampires disappeared, melding into the shadows and away from the eyes of the Rapid Response Unit.
For a minute, T’lan, Mattlow and White did not move much more than mere inches. T’lan scanned the halls with her tricorder, with no results. Ensign White kept his bible quotes down to a whisper. Reciting his holy book did not bring him comfort in such a creepy setting. Mattlow looked around uneasily, staring at the floor, up the roof of the corridor, and anywhere else that the sneaky suspects could have been. Nobody made a sound, except for their nervous breathing.
“Huh? Where did they go?” Mattlow asked.
“I do not know…” T’lan answered, “Nor do I know how they forced an emotional response to my presence. I do not recommend staying here.”
“As I walk into the valley of the shadow of death…” Ensign White weeped.
“Alright, everyone just cool your jets.” Said Mattlow, “I know this is very scary, but we can’t loose our cool. We have to…”
Mattlow felt the collar of his uniform being forcefully yanked. His feet lifted off the ground. The rest of his body freely flew across the corridor like a rogue photon torpedo. The air whistled past his ears as his panicking scream nearly deafened the hallway. The screaming stopped when his back and head were jarred from the impact of his body hitting the floor. His blurred vision saw the dreadlocked woman again, her arm casually outstretched after the flinging motion.
Lord Vlad decided to sneak up on the Vulcan woman for a game. T’lan’s lightning quick reflexes surprised the vampire lord. Not many creatures he considered his food could catch a Sanguinarian off guard. He looked down at Lieutenant T’lan’s arm as it clamped down on his shoulder in an attempt to do the Vulcan nerve pinch. He allowed the tasty morsel to touch his caporeal form in a solid state. The Vulcan’s futile gesture at defiance amused Lord Vlad greatly. He savored the Vulcan’s rare emotion of fear for the first time on his trip. T’lan was deathly frightened by the increasingly boiling urge inside, and the uncertainty of why her nerve pinch was not working.
“Heh heh… how illogical, yet how amusing this is. Do you want to play a game?” Lord Vlad’s firey eyes spit holes into T’lan’s bare soul. The tears ran down freely from the Vulcan’s face as sobbing tremors and knotting fear beat into her. She couldn’t move her hand away from the wretched being’s shoulder. “Don’t be afraid. You know you want to let go. Let me… help you.”
Lord Vlad’s hands brushed T’lan’s hand away, then his hand stroked away the tears on her face. He placed a finger on her temple, a few on her cheeks and another on her jawbone. He repeated the words, “My mind to your mind… my thoughts to your thoughts… my mind to your mind… my thoughts to your thoughts…”
T’lan stopped her sobbing. She was too petrified with fear to cry. The boiling blood fever was too painful to hold out for long. She feared being so vulnerable, being exposed to this evil creature. What she feared the most was the Pon’farr. It grew so strong that she couldn’t resist it any longer. She had to mate, with anyone, even the vile being placing the thoughts and images into her head, and she would tear his mate apart if she had to.
She drew herself closer to Lord Vlad. Her lips came closer to his.
“Vlad, I am going to go exploring for a bit. Do you want to accompany me?” Lady Lilith asked.
“Right… you go along without me. Check on this place known as sickbay. I shall accompany you later.” Lord Vlad ordered. Lady Lilith disappeared in a cloud of vampire bats. All of the shrieking rodents flitted down the corridor, passing the semi-conscious form of Lieutenant Mattlow. Lord Vlad continued, “Until then… let’s leave this wench to burn in her own fever. I will come for her later and soothe her suffering.” With that, he pushed T’lan butt first into the floor. The rejected look on her face was enough to melt the coldest of hearts.
Too bad for her, Lord Vlad barely had a heart to begin with.
“Don’t leave me…” T’lan sobbed. She shook in spasms from the blood fever as her face turned increasingly red. Lord Vlad ignored her pleas. He turned his back to the Vulcan woman. “Don’t leave me… don’t leave me… help me…”
He saw another source of amusement. In front of him, huddled up to the wall sat a frightened Ensign White. He held the symbol of Christianity in front of Vlad’s face. Lord Vlad chuckled at the defenceless human. He remembered the Christians. He remembered all the good times that he had toying with the inquisitors and vampire hunters whom sought his kind in the name of their God. Out of all the races, the Christians were to him the most fascinating.
“O Lord,” Ensign White recited. The sweat on his palms stank with fear and mingled with the silver cross, “you are my rock of safety. Please help me, don’t refuse to answer me, for if you are silent…”
“I might as well give up… and die.” Lord Vlad recited back, “Psalms 28, verse one if I’m correct. Your’s if different from the King James translation… awww, come come now, dear Jesse. You do not realize yet, do you? Do you think your God has saved you for now?” Lord Vlad looked eye to eye at the scared officer. His hands were too fast for the Christian Ensign to stop him from taking the holy cross from his trembling fingertips. The chain broke as Vlad snatched the object, braving the itching sting of silver on his skin. “Consider thanking your God tonight, Ensign Jesse… Issac… White. I like playing with my food, especially when they walk the path of your God. I hear that a good Christian is hard to come by, so I’m keeping you alive as my amusement… until I either get bored with you or I get a little peckish. Sweet dreams…”
Lord Vlad had enough of his newest diversion. The silver on the Christian’s keychain was starting to annoy him. In disgust, he threw the object away, and walked off, not paying heed to the begging moans of Lieutenant T’lan, the unconscious forms of Ensign Wittley and Lieutenant Mattlow, the huddled mess that was Ensign White and the comatose body of Ensign Hanover.
The Rapid Response Unit was defeated. Lieutenant T’lan’s shaking hands tapped her comm-badge. Her voice shook, “Sickbay… medical emergency…”
The Mist Clears
NPC Nathan Carrington
Lieutenant Jg Todd Sansky
(In the brig)
'His eyes are open Doctor, I think he's coming around.' One of the Doctors in Sickbay quickly rushed over to Nathan's side as the nurse stepped back.
'Doctor, what am I doing in Sickbay?'
'Mr Carrington that will take some explanation. We transported you from Doctor Sansky's quarters and using his research we blocked the neurogenic field the Vampires have been creating.' 'Todd? Neurogenic field? Vampires? What the hell is going on here,' Nathan sat up in bed as his headache kicked in, 'oh and why is my head spinning?' 'Please tell me the last thing you remember?' 'I was lying in bed waiting for Todd to come in, Todd, where is he, I want him here. Nurse find my boyfriend and tell him sleeping beauty is back from the land of nod.' The young nurse looked blank and turned to the Doctor.
'What's wrong, he is ok isn't he?'
'Please sir let me start at the beginning. Lieutenant Sansky found you in a comatose state in close proximity to Lord Vlad, one of the 'Vampires'. You had severe blood loss, anyway to cut a long story short you woke up after a couple of days and revealed that Sansky had inflicted your injuries in form of a virus and he was taken to the brig. He soon broke out of the brig and sedated you, he performed scans of your brain before he was arrested again.
His scans ruled out a virus and found a strange neurogenic field, which was coming from the Tamarian ship and our 'guests'. We beamed you back to Sickbay and Doctor Dothan managed to suppress the field. You are the only one onboard who was affected, we think that's because Vlad was disturbed and he wanted to cover his tracks. Put simply we don't have a clue but these damned Vampires are feasting on the crew.' Nathan just stared at him in disbelief.
' So now that Todd is cleared he is released?' 'Erm no, he assaulted an officer in his break out, he's still detained.' 'Oh my god, this is all my fault, am I free to leave Sickbay?' 'Of course but we want you to wear this cortical monitor incase you have a relapse. Nathan jumped off the bed and headed for the door wearing his civilian clothing.
Down the corridor Nathan couldn't believe the security presence. In the turbolift to the Brig Nathan was pre occupied with the thought he had caused so many problems and couldn't even remember it. Walking down the secured area he was confronted by an armed Ensign who looked too mean to mess with.
'What are you doing here?'
'I'm on my way to the Brig to see my boyfriend, don't worry I just want to see him.' 'My orders permit me to scan you before entering the Brig and only a short visit will be permitted.' Nathan nodded as he was marched to the locked doors. Entering he was swept over by the scanning light, nothing was detected as he was waved on into the room.
Walking past the other prisoners he wandered to the cell in the far end in darkness. Standing in front of the forcefield he saw his lover lying on the floor in pain.
'Babe, can you hear me.'
'Nathan, what are you doing here, cause any trouble and I will call the guard.' 'Nonsense, Sickbay used your findings to block the neurogenic field, I cant say how sorry I am, all I can say is I love you.' Todd stood up straightening his sore back. 'I don't blame you; I blame Vlad and his mistress bitch. I love you too you fool, and I would rip your clothes off and ravage you here and now, and I wont drain your blood.' They both laughed for a moment before they were broken by the harsh security officer's voice.
'That's enough ladies, your time is up.' 'Ladies, the ignorant bastard, hey ensign if I assault you do I get to share the cell?' The hunk in gold just glared and pointed for Nathan to leave.
'I will see you in a couple of days sexy.' Winking he nodded at the guard and exited the Brig to head back to his quarters for a rest.
Lieutenant Commander Ethan Suder
"The First Finding Part I"
**** Engineering/Sickbay ****
Ethan looked around with a look of curiosity. Once again, like in his dreams, he was standing on a field. The skies above were dark and threatened rain and thunder. The wind was a swift, but gentle coldness. In the distance, Suder could see a forest burning. Even with it being so far away, he could smell the smoke from the burning wood and the ashes that he now stood on.
"Peaceful, isn't it?" a voice called out. "Yet somewhat disturbing. You know what's coming."
Ethan turned and looked at an old friend of his. Someone he hadn't seen for some time, he had served with her and seen her on occasions, but not recently. Yet he spoke to her like he saw her everyday. "The battle." Ethan replied, his voice no more than a whisper
"Will you survive?" she asked stepping through some burnt ashes towards Ethan so she too, could look over at the horizon and the fight that was on it's way.
"Can never tell from one fight to the next." Ethan replied.
"I think you can." Donna replied.
Ethan looked down at the mud for a second, and then over at the Commander. "Can I?" he replied answering her question with a question.
Commander Sanders gave a nod. "You, more than anyone I know are the most determined person I''ll ever know. Your a very ambitous person. When you know what you want, you'll not stop until you get it. You may do it in a secretive way, or back off for a while, but in the end, you'll get what you want, or go down fighting." she explained.
Ethan glanced at her again, only for a second. Long enough to see her long blonde hair blowing in the wind, her eyes fixed on something in the distance. Her clothing was black, much like Ethan's. It was as if they weren't in Starfleet. And from a certain point of view, they weren't. Ethan's mind was complex, but at the same time simple. Always different from one moment to the next. That's where he was. As he looked back towards the burning forest, he saw people, running towards him. Torches held high in the air, no doubt ready to strike, impale and burn Ethan's body all at the same time. Ethan remained silent for a short while longer before speaking out quietly again. "How do you know I've not had enough? That I don't want things to end and that I've done what I can?"
Donna turned and looked at Ethan. "Because it's in your nature to survive. Your not one for taking the easy way out. You could go through emotional hell again several times, it wouldn't make a difference. You'd go down fighting. Your ambition is not to live to a ripe old age. You find it a challenge to live through each day, let alone years to come."
"The thought of living to an old age is but a dream. Anything can happen from one day to the next." he replied quickly.
"Your understanding of life is very unique."
"But not careless. I've seen many sides of my own soul. I've seen a lot in 36 years. Gone through a lot."
"You have. That's why your understanding of life is so special. Because you are truely not afraid, you accept life, death, sadness, happiness, much like you accept waking up the next day."
"That doesn't mean I don't want it to end. A man, any man, can take only so much. What if I've reached my limit?" he asked again, still watching the burning flames flicker in teh distance.
"You've never been one for limits. You push by them. You've done it before." Donna said.
Ethan noticed something to his left and turned slowly to see what it was. In a small patch of grass that had not burned through the night, lay a woman. Ethan knew it was Donna right away. The wounds on her stomach were clearly visible. The blood stained her white dress like red wine on a white carpet. Ethan's stomach turned, and his heart sunk to the bottom of his rib cage. It was like watching a replay of his past. He then saw himself running towards her.
Ethan watched himself run towards Donna. He fell to her side and clutched one of her hands with his own. His eyes were already full with tears. He knew things were bad. He looked at the wound on Donna's stomach and wanted to do something, but he didn't knwo where to begin. With his second hand, he moved it towards the wound but began shaking. He knew he shouldn't touch it, but wanted to do something. His hand pushed down on the wound to prevent further bleeding, which didn't matter any more. It was clear that with the amount of blood on her dress and the ground around her, she would die of blood loss. Yet when Ethan looked into her eyes, the only pain he saw was his own. Her facial features were as if she didn't have a clue what was going on. But her green eyes told more. They told Ethan that she was hurt to see him hurt. She held on to his hands tight, but didn't even feel the blood on his hands. The tears ran down Ethan's face like a waterfall in the middle of a forest. Since Ethan had found her, they hadn't said anything. He wanted to say so much, but could accept the fact that she was leaving him. The pain struck Ethan like a railroad spike being ripped through his torso and heart and out the otehr side of his body. It was a sharp and blinding pain that made Ethan numb.
"Ssssshhhhh." she whispered, a calling out to him.
Ethan opened his eyes and looked at Donna's. They were so green, so peaceful, but sad for him. She moved one of her hands and rested it on his left cheek and wiped away the tears with her thumb. Gently holding his face, she closed her eyes and let his mind become one with hers. She then brought his face down to her own and kissed him passionately like she always had done.
Ethan for a moment didn't feel as bad. Lost in the moment. But when the kiss was broken, he once again felt the pain that shuddered through his body. His eyes were fixed on hers the whole time. He shook his head slightly. "Don't leave." he whispered. He repeated it several times, each time, it was turning more into a calling than a request. He could see her eyes drifting. As if the life was being drawn to soemwhere else. They were turning empty.
After several minutes, Ethan realised that he was still asking her not to leave, and was still staring into her eyes. He had only just noticed the emptyness. The tears continued to run dow his face. He rested a hand on her left cheek and put his head against hers and mourned for her. For over a day, Ethan remained there, with her.
Ethan turned away from the repeat of his life and looked at the Donna who was standing near him. "How can I go on?" he asked turning back to look at the burning forests, far, far away.
"You've come this far." she said.
"That pain." he said looking back at himself, mourning over Donna's death. "I go through that every day. I think of ways that it would all end. But then it doesn't. It drags on. Like life is laughing in my face every single day."
Donna turned and looked at the Ethan cradling her dead body. "He is coming." she said.
Ethan turned and looked at Donna, fighting back the tears in his eyes. But she had his attention.
"He'll be here soon." she said turning to the people who were running towards them with the torches.
Ethan looked at them also. As they were getting closer, he could see their faces. He didn't recognise any of them, but in a wayhe did. He knew they were the one's who did this to Donna. He had her mind, feelings, thoughts, and soul locked away in the deep, dark reaches of his own.
Ethan looked at the skies when he felt oisture splashing on his skin. It was starting to rain. It got strong within seconds and the wind picked up like an angry wave crashing down on a beach. Ethan turned to Donna and found himself holding her, blood covering his hands, a different look in her eyes. "Their taking you back."
"Who?" he said as the tears on his face began blending with the rain.
"It's your blood." she said pointing to the skies with a flick of her eyes. Ethan looked up and then held out a hand and noticed the red splashing on his palm. It was infact rainign blood. He then realised that this might not have been real. The bloody rain could well have indicated that he was injuried and getting treatment. But he didn't want to leave. He looked back at Donna and held her face with both hands.
"I don't want to leave." he said as he shook his head again.
Her hands met up with his and she once again whispered for him to be quiet, to relax and accept the moment.
Ethan opened his eyes for a moment and saw a white glare above him. There was someone stood over him in a dark uniform that mixed with some blue. But that was the last thing he remembered.
“Remy and Jessie’s excellent Adventure”
By Remy and Jessie
The corridor was darkened nearly to a pitch black except for the eerie flashing red lights. . .blood drained corpses blocked the path to salvation and the vampires seemed to have left the premises, but one could never be sure. An aura of evil hung over the ship and just as our hero, the ever intelligent and greatly beautiful Remy, began to turn a corner, she felt a shiver go down her spine as though someone, something, was behind her, and she turned quickly to find. . .god damned nothing! It wasn't that Remy really felt like being chased after by vampires or having her blood sucked, though that would have been more interesting than walking around on the ship, pretending something was actually happening. But Remy often felt stir crazy; the entire universe wasn't nearly large enough a place to roam and explore. We need our freedom, people! she said loudly. Freedom! What are you talking about?
Remy turned to see a rather hairless, gaunt ensign staring at her, as though she were crazy. “Do I look like I'm talking to you? I was trying to have a very nice time talking to MYSELF, thank you VERY much! Rule of thumb: if you see someone who's talking to themself and you think they're crazy, don't interrupt them!
Hell, just don't talk to them. Don't piss of a crazy person, all RIGHT?” The ensign started to back off.
“Wait!” she cried. He stopped and looked at her. “Have you seen any vampires lately? Blood? Gore? Corpses running around screaming, 'I vant to suck your blood!' ?”
The ensign ran. Remy smiled. “That's just too easy.
Now, where was I with my little horror tale?” She paused and then heard a sound like yelling from farther along in the corridor. Maybe someone's in trouble. Nifty. Remy to the rescue. CHAAARGE!
Meanwhile on her way to her duty station, Jessie Louisa Parry, Assistant chief tactical officer had just run into something warped. Lillith. She skidded to a stop to see the absolutely gorgeous woman standing there waiting for her. Jessie walked towards her slowly planning on being polite to the guest not really sure what she was doing with out an escort but she smiled at Lillith. “Hello Lady Lillith” She said as she drew nearer. “Having a nice day?” Lillith smiled and nodded. “Why yes young lady I am having a wonderful day, full of blood and your crew members.” She smiled evilly and grabbed the lieutenants arm to stop her from walking past.
Jessie looked at the hand and then at her eyes and said loudly. “I think Lady that you had better let me go.”
“Why?” Lillith yanked hard on her arm and Jessie careened into the wall.
Jessie snarled. “Oh great what it is with me? I mean last mission I get bashed up and now this crazy loony chic wants my blood. Next time I stay in my office.” She began to move backwards as Lillith approached.
Don’t leave the party so soon Jessica after Vlad drank from you I wish to try your blood as well.” Jessie had had enough. “HELP! Security!”
Remy stopped to find Jessie, the girl who had helped her after she had gone temporarily blind during the Borg attack, moving away from Lillith, the supposed vampire. Remy looked at Lillith and decided she could take out the 'supposed’. After all, the huge fangs and the really hungry expression on her face were sort of a hint. Remy supposed she could have been craving a cheeseburger, but she kind of doubted it. Besides, Jessie didn't look remotely like a cheeseburger. The Lady Lillith, aka queen of the damned, turned to look at Remy. “Ah, more food,” she purred.
“How overdone,” Remy murmured as she stepped a little closer. “For a vampire, you certainly are trite. Well, you want to take a bite out of me, or what? I mean, it's not like I got all day. Is A positive blood to you liking? It's all I have to donate.”
“You have a sharp wit, girl,” Lillith said. “All the better. Brave girls always taste better.” Lillith jumped forward. Remy quickly kicked up into Lillith's jaw. Lillith stumbled back a bit and seemed momentarily startled. That was another hint she wasn't exactly human. A human would have been on the ground, crying for his mama. Oh well. A moment was enough.
"Nice to see you again, Jessie. Now, let's RUN!”
Jessie nodded and grabbed Remy's arm and began hightailing out of there. "A very good idea." she said as they began to run.
Five minutes later, as Remy and Jessie were still on the chase from the evil Lillith, Remy asked, "Um, Jessie? Where are we running TO? I don't think she's going to get bored and stop chasing us."
“Lts head for the bridge… she wouldn’t dare follow us.. we will hide in the conference room” Jessie said as she rounded the corner and spotted the turbolift. She dragged Remy over to it and into it when the doors opened. “Bridge” she yelled at the computer. As the doors slid shut she looked at Remy. “I doubt Price will complain to much.. I have to be on the bridge anyway.” The turbolift began to move. Remy took a deep breath.
"You okay?" she asked. Jessie nodded. Remy took another breath (after all, facing vampires is a good work out), and look at her wryly. "You know, all of a sudden, I have the strangest craving for garlic bread."
Jessie nodded. “A big loaf of it”
The turbolift doors opened and Jessie and Remy ran into the conference room, neither looking into it as they went. "We should be safe in here," Remy said, eyes closed. Her head suddenly hurt. Nothing like vampires to give you a headache.
“You hope” Muttered Jessie as she rested her head against the door.
"Hi mates," Captain Price said. Jessie and Remy jumped. Remy looked around. It appeared that in their haste to escape the vampire queen, they had stumbled into a conference meeting. Beautiful.
"Aw shit," Remy murmured.
“You don’t say” Jessie said as she looked for a place to hide. Out of the frying pan and into the fire.
"The Trojan Men - No Pun Intended"
Ensign Chester "Chuck" Copperpot
Chester's time working the brig, save for the visit of his prisoner's significant other, was without major incident. He continued reading "The Trojan Women" until his eyes were dry and heavy, then he laid the book on the desk next to where he'd propped up his feet.
They had been more or less friendly - Chester and his visitor - despite Copperpot's insistence on reading throughout Sansky's involuntary stay. So friendly, in fact, that Chester felt perfectly comfortable cracking a joke at the expense of Dr. Sansky and his boyfriend by calling them "ladies." It was really more of a test to see how they would react. Carrington hadn't attacked him. Something was to be said for that.
Chester got some food for the prisoner and a cup of tea for himself. He leaned back, reflecting on the play and staring at his prisoner.
"Something I can help you with, Ensign?" Sansky asked.
"No, thank you, Doctor," Copperpot said, sounding profoundly amused. "It's just an amazing coincidence. What, me sitting here, reading Euripides when you had your visit. I feel suddenly compelled to read 'Chrysippus.' "
"What is that supposed to mean?" Sansky asked.
"It is supposed to form a thought, as most sentences are intended to do. Did I forget my verb or the object of some preposition, sir?" Copperpot asked. He did not care to elaborate. While amusing, the visiting doctor's novelty was wearing off quickly.
Chuck yawned while the doctor responded, not out of contempt but by mere coincidence. His message indicator on his workstation panel blinked as it had for the last few days. The last one he bothered reading was about some manner of visitors to the Galaxy. The Sangrias or something; he couldn't recall. Most of the messages were very dry and boring, devoid of character development and bereft of even the most basic useful information. When presented with the choice between the poetry and prose of the ancient Greek playwrites or the doldrums of Commander Elaithin's crew birthday updates, it did not take him long to decide.
And so the light blinked on and on. Chester put his phaser in front of it to mask the annoying redness from distracting him from his reading. Meanwhile, updates on vampiric foes and security lockdowns sat unopened.
“Fun With Broken Heads: Part 2”
“Am I Crazy, or is it Just Me?”
By Lieutenant JG James Lionel Corgan
Operation’s Officer, USS Galaxy
And Lieutenant Adrian An’quinsos
Counselor, USS Galaxy
Location: Counseling (after away mission)
“I have voices in my head…” James spoke out frankly.
“Excuse me?” Adrian asked.
James blurted out the useful nugget of information after much deliberation. There was no sense in making an effort to heal his damaged and almost decommission grade psyche without mentioning the most important tidbit of all. There were voices in his head.
At first, there was one. Just like everyone else in the Universe, James Corgan had a nagging voice in his head called his conscience. There was no escape from the annoying little sub-personality. Always disagreeing, giving out contradictory advice, coming in when company was not wanted, his conscience turned out to be more of a devil’s advocate. It was rude, insulting, always treating James like a variety of pack animal, his conscience always became the minor inconvenience that he didn’t want. During the last mission, his conscience was mostly silent, thanks in part to a Vulcan mind meld during the Decilia mission and the fact that James was too busy fighting Borg and chasing stalkers to listen.
Corgan was far from invincible. So many mind f**ks caught up with the junior officer that the Vulcan built walls of discipline came crumbling down. James knew that sanity was slipping fast, disappearing like the dry land after a flood from a broken dam. He was more irritable, had more of a strained relationship with his two friends on the ship, had involuntary emotions that caught him off guard such as feeling love for the first time in years, had fits of depression that flirted with suicide… and of course, the voices in his head that attacked more often and harder than usual.
“Tell me more about these voices.” Adrian probed. He was genuinely interested in what the young officer had to say.
“The voices…” James trailed off, trying to think of the multiple personalities that spawned in his sub conscience, “There are five of them. They each seem to represent a part of me, or a part of my problem. They have names too…. Oh gawd… you’re going to section 8 me, aren’t you? I told too much… I really am a bona-fide psycho… aren’t I?”
“Mr. Corgan,” Adrian assured. “It would take a lot more than that to section 8 you. Besides, I am sure that Starfleet has more pressing concerns than to lock up one of their best officers. So, tell me more about these voices, what are they like?”
“The voices…” James started, “There are five of them. They have their own personalities, and each one always brings up one of my faults. It’s like they are my judges or something…”
“There is my conscience, which has been with me for the entire time. He’s me, or the opposite of me… you know what I mean? Anyways, my conscience is a pain in the f**king ass, I swear it. Always telling me what to do…. Other than that, he’s just like me, except more malicious.”
“Sounds rather intriguing to say the least,” Adrian replied. “Please go on.”
“Then there’s the Borg.” James continued, “Most of the time, it’s just a voice. In my dreams, and even once while I was meditating, I saw a drone that took its place. It’s trying to get revenge on me.”
“The Borg would give anyone night mares.” Adrian commented. “My apologies for that please continue.”
“There is this woman in my dreams and meditations. I call her ‘Star Lady’ because I saw her when I looked at the Antares star during my meditation. She’s always trying to make me confess… asking me forcefully to say that I love Lexa. You know… come to think of it, she is physically similar to Lexa, right down to the wavy hair.”
Adrian’s brow rose. “Interesting…” He trailed off, not knowing what to say really.
“I met a new personality after the mission. I call her ‘Sprite’, ‘cause she is really short and red headed, and she dresses with a forest theme. She’s a mean spirited little f**k. She insulted me when I last meet her, and then the rest of the personalities joined in and jeered me. Ohhhh… she has this annoying little laugh and she always tells me that she hates me.”
Adrian took the padd before and thoroughly noted everything. “She sounds like quite a person…” He looked up laid the device down. “My apologies.”
“Lastly… I have a voice that speaks to me about death. He’s the Archangel of Death, no joking. He has my face, a fallen angel’s wings, black robes and he carries this huge, wicked scythe. He makes me feel guilty about killing people. I’ve killed a lot in the war… and it isn’t enough for him that I am guilty of murder and that I admit this fault every day of my f**king life.”
“Hmmm… are you sure it’s nothing?”
“Doc… I swear, at first I thought it was nothing, until the voices got louder. I don’t know which ones told me to, but a couple of them wanted me to hurt Lexa. I don’t want to hurt her… and then… no fooling here sir, but I saw Sprite for a few seconds when I was in my quarters. This was the first time I saw one of them outside my dreams or my meditative exercises. I must be going crazy…”
Adrian paused a moment… a very long moment. It seemed time slowed around him as he gathered his thoughts. His concentration ceased as an unnoticeable smile caressed his face. “Mr. Corgan, throughout your life, what was your imagination like? In what I mean is, day dreaming, thoughts, dreaming itself… describe it too me if you will?”
“My imagination…” James thought hard, “Was always a reflection of my overall mood. As a kid, I was content, so my imagination went towards more… ‘Happy’ pursuits. When I played my guitar, I tried to play happy, carefree songs. Remember ‘Flotter and the Fletcher’s Call?’ I could play that song on the guitar by heart when I was seven… but… once I got older, I guess happiness took a downward spiral. First, it was my father, who didn’t approve when I quit our family band. I wanted to do different kinds of music, but my father… he wanted me to do nothing but old Earth folk songs. Then it was my parents dying before I could reconcile with my father, then the Borg, the war… so on and so forth. My imagination, mostly expressed through my music, has always reflected how I felt. And yes, those thoughts carry through my dreams… and sometimes my daydreams.”
“Then, your conscious is a reflection of your subconscious.” Adrian replied. “The perceptions and realities that you have faced in your life have brought you these disturbing images?”
“I’d say that’s a safe assumption, especially concerning the Borg.”
“Have you ever tried any sort of meditative practices, perhaps lucid dreaming, to control your subconscious?”
“As a matter of fact, I have.” James paused, “But now I try to avoid doing so. It seems that whenever I try to meditate or sleep, they come out and harass me even more. It’s bad enough to hear them in my dreams, so why would I want to make it worse by meditation that doesn’t work? They just come back… so meditation was not very constructive. And oh… have I tried. Vulcan, Terran, even Bolian techniques I have tried. Nothing worked.”
‘Meditation doesn’t work, sleep is a nightmare, and All had been tried and failed’ Adrian made a mental note. He looked up at the officer again. “Mr. Corgan, do you have, or ever think about having a pet?”
“I had a Clusta Lizard when I was twelve. Those mean spirited little guys really impress the girls, but they only last a year and they’re not friendly at all. Now, I don’t have a pet and I never really considered it. Why?”
“Just a pet. You know, like a bird, cat, dog, targ, Tarkasian razor beast, any species of animal that you feel in some sense connected to.”
“Well… I do like cats. My dad had an allergy to cat dander, so we couldn’t get a cat.”
“Many people enjoy having pets around. It gives them not only a responsibility, but also something to make them feel attached. Of course, theirs always the same monotony of just administering drugs, but that would be useless and ill advised. Drugs serve little purpose to a person who has been through so much, and has managed to still hold it together.”
“If you call this keeping it together, who am I to argue? As for your suggestion, I wouldn’t mind getting off these drugs, I have to take every day. I hate swallowing those anti-depressants. But… about getting a pet, do you really think that’s a good idea on a spaceship?”
I don’t see why not. Several of the crew on my deck keep the odd pet or two… some more odd than others, but whatever floats your boat I guess.”
“I’ll put your suggestions to practice, though I probably won’t get a pet until the end of this mission. Nobody has a litter of kittens available, and unless… hmmmm… I heard biology has some surplus Trellian Boa Constrictors…”
“Hey,” He grinned. “That works as well.”
“Thanks for the help, doc. I better get going. I have a shift to attend to.”
Adrian glanced at the Operations officer as he left the room with a smile on his face. The El-Aurian began to write a meticulous report about the Corgan, including a comment of carefully weaning him from his medication. Pausing in thought, he smiled, feeling he had helped someone. ‘A good story for the good listener.’
By Lt Rose Isis MacAllen
Lord Vlad (written by William)
Rose just walked in the door after an hard day of work in the Science Lab, she felt dirty and needed an long hot bath so she moved towards her bath area while getting her dirty uniform off.
Vlad waited in the dark corners of the room waiting for the opportunity to pounce. When she moved to take off her clothes, he grinned savagely. He knew he was going to have a meal tonight.
Rose slowly took her hair down from its tight bun, then she started to take her clothes off slowly.
Vlad carefully walked up behind her, and began his hypnotic conditioning to the young woman. Hoping to cause her to become enraptured with him.
Rose got into the tub of hot water and layed there so relaxed, she moans a little as the hot water caresses her body.
Vlad came to just outside the bathroom and began trying to get her to become lustful. He wanted her to become his willing slave.
Rose tried to use her mind to block him and started to get out of the bathtub.
Vlad strengthened his attempts. This one was tough, he noted. But she was not tough enough.
Rose looked at herself in the mirror and starts shaking a little while getting an long white gown on, she feel Vlad near by.
"Get out of here Vlad I'm not that easy to get." Rose yelled from the bathroom while brushing her hair out.
Vald smiled solemnly. He then redoubled his efforts again. Even Betazoids should not be able to resist those efforts.
Rose started to put her brush down, like in a zombie like state she started to take her gown off very slowly.
Vald smiled and came up behind her, and caressed her breasts as they came out. He waited until she had taken off the gown, and entered her backside roughly.
Rose still keeps the gown on, "Let me go now!" she said slowly.
Vlad smiled, "The more you resist, the harder the beating will be for your disobedience. But soon you will learn that I am a gentle master..."
"You're anything but gentle, now get out before I call the guards." Rose said in an brave voice while walking out of the bathroom area.
Vlad followed her, deciding to change tactics. He growled, "If you do not submit, you will lose your child. Because I can be quite rough when angered."
Rose grins at him and looks out the window, "You wouldn't do that, my daughter is protected by my gods."
Vlad smiled grimly, "Your gods are nothing to me. We Sanguinarians gave you your religious precepts. So your gods are beneath me in the heirarchy of strength."
"What do you want from me?" Rose said still looking out the window while playing with her hair a little.
Vlad smiled, "I know this sounds, how do you say, B-movieish, but I want to suck your blood. And feast on your innocence."
Rose can feel his power moving in her as she walked slowly to her chair in the living area and sat down, she can feel the passion and the lust rising in her.
Vlad followed her and incited more lustful feelings in her. When she was ready, she would make the first move.
Rose was fighting her hardest from the lust that was growing inside her, *No I must fight it!* she thought to herself while Rose was moving around her chair, she can feel Vlad coming closer to her.
Vlad soon was standing in front of her chair, "Surrender, Rose. It will soon get to be too much for you."
Rose gets on her knees yelling, "I WILL NOT!"
Vlad smiled, "The more you fight it, the stronger it becomes. Soon you will be completely lust-filled. And then you will beg for me to take you as my own."
Rose was sweating badly, "What do you mean your own?" she said still on her knees, her long brown hair sweating and all wet.
Vlad smiled grimly, "You will want me to fill that empty space in your life. Where a boyfriend should be, but is not in your life. That Reginald does not know how to treat a lady. A fine meal you will make."
Rose lays on the floor she is tired of fighting, she was breathing heavy.
Vlad picked her up off the floor, and began to caress her skin. It almost appeared if he was loving her.
"Do you think the bedroom will be more your style?" Rose said while thinking about her boyfriend, wishing he would come to his recue.
Vlad shook his head, "I'll take you here."
Rose looks at him, "My boyfriend still loves me and he will come for me."
Vlad smiled, "Then I will feast on him too."
"I won't let you hurt my friends and my lover," Rose said then slaps him very hard cross the face.
Vlad smiled at the sting, "Don't worry. One of your friends has already felt my wrath. She will never again trouble me."
"You going to hurt me Vlad?"
Vlad smiled deviously, "Only if you force the issue. All I want is more of a taste of your sweet blood."
Rose can feel Vlad touching her skin knowing he will have her soon but she have to fight him for the good of the ship. She is backed into a corner of her own bedroom trapped like a caged animal.
Vlad approaches confidently, as he noted her fear. It was an intoxicating brew. Fear and desire. He knew that he would soon have her. And that would be thrilling.
Rose tried to hide but she couldn't the room wasn't big she stopped and looked at herself in the mirror and falls to her knees, she started crawling towards the bed trying to find one of her swords.
Vlad slowly stalked her and came up on her slowly. This might give her the time she needed to get a weapon to protect herself. But that was not known yet. Fate had a way of working itself out that way.
Rose got her sword out and arms herself, she started to swing it around trying to hit him.
Vlad msiplayed the sword coming towards him and it buried itself in him. But just for a second, because then he turned into hundreds of tiny bats and flew out of her quarters. Headed who knew where.
Rose lays in bed trying to go to sleep until she felt a body inside her bed next to her.
If she would turn to look, she would see that it was not Vlad or Lilith. It was some sort of obnoxious pet. With a long thin snout, and short hair. It was a Minature Dachshund. A dabbled black, brown and white creature that looked like it just wanted to be held.
Rose looks under the covers and see the dog, she picks it up and smiles as the dog was licking her face, "And where did you come from young man?"
Attached to the dog was a tag. On the tag was written the following, "From Wilhem. Heard about your dreams. Thought you might want something warm to help you sleep. This is Brecht. You will need to feed him using the replicators. Just ask for dog food, small. And set aside a place where he can go to the bathroom. He is otherwise housebroken and not much of a chore. Hope you like him..."
Rose smiles as her new dog Brecht when to sleep, this was the most sweetest gift anybody have never gotten, the she fell into a peaceful sleep but not for long.
by Chris & Anna Thomas
After finishing their shower and additional activities in the bathroom, they decided it would be a good time to get something to eat. And since she was up with her husband this morning, breakfast together sounded like a excellent way to close the events that started with dinner last night.
"We should have breakfast together." Anna suggested.
"That's a very good idea, it's still an hour until I have to be on the bridge this morning and review what's happened since I left last night." Chris said. "It would be the prefect way to start the day."
"Or end last night." she offered.
Chris smiled at her, "mmm um" was all he said, showing her more in his eyes and body language that last night was something special. Something they'd not experienced in a while.
Yes they'd made love before tonight, but tonight, this morning was something very unique, very special. Everything about it had sent his body into a spasm and her's as well.
"Now why don't you go get dressed then, while I get breakfast ready." she said.
"Thank you dear." Chris said as he exited the living room of their quarters and went to the bedroom and the closet so that he could get dressed.
While in the room changing, he came the realization that he was changing. He used to spend hours in the holodecks working on several ideas, projects that he felt could useful in the future. Unfortunately being the first officer and a husband he'd only spent maybe three hours on the holodeck since taking over the role.
While he was happy with his life and with everything that was going on right in his life, he couldn't help but miss the days working on mathematical equations on the holodeck with some of the most brilliant scientist and mathematicians to every live, and now, now it was just but a memory.
"What do you want for breakfast, Chris?" Anna asked as he went
"Breakfast?" Chris asked. "Hmm.." he said thinking about what sounded good.
"Well?" she asked, "Made you mind up yet dear??"
"Yes, I'll have a 3 egg omelette, with mushrooms, green peppers, onions, ham and cheese. Then two pieces of toast with butter and grape jelly. Plus a glass of Orange Juice."
"And is that all dear?" She asked surprised by the order.
"Yes that's all dear, for me anyway." Chris said. "That is if it's not to much trouble."
"No trouble." she said in response.
"If you're sure then that will be fantastic. I really could stand to eat before I go on duty, especially after last night." Chris said as he worked to get dressed.
"It'll be ready in a few minutes dear." Anna said as she placed her order and then went to set the food at the table.
"That's fine, I am still getting dressed." Chris said. "I am after all a little sore from last night and it's making me a little slower."
"You are sore, I am really sore." she answered back.
Chris remained quite while he finished getting dressed and then emerged from their bedroom to find the breakfast was sitting at the table waiting for him. Anna was already eating hers and stopped to smile, before returning to eating.
"You could've waited." Chris commented.
"No I couldn't it looked to good to wait."
"Of course." Chris said as he joined her for breakfast and started eating.
"Scratched ensign+grumpy doctor=?"
Lt. JG Vladimir Malgin
Ensign Alia Drakely
Regally sweeping through a door had fast lost its appeal for Alia. It took all the satisfaction out of throwing someone out, not being able to physically shut the door on someone. Some designer hadn't thought that one through. After all, how do you make a dramatic exit during a fight with the delicate 'woosh' following you instead of the solid slamming of a good, heavy door?
She'd been wandering the ship for over an hour and still no sign of the Lord or Lady. In a phase of spontaneity, she had decided to come back to Sickbay. Her face had actually started to throb with pain, and she was going to get it fixed this time. Even if she had to do it herself. The fact that she wanted to know how the young doctor she had brought in earlier was doing had nothing to do with it, at least, that's what she told herself.
She stood just inside of the doors, arms folded, sweeping her gaze over the hectic Sickbay. Her eye finally settled on a doctor almost painstakingly tinkering with a medical tricorder. Well at least it wasn't a patient. She strode over to him,
"Excuse me, Doctor, do you have a moment?"
Vladimir turned to that strange ensign that distracted him from his 'very important work'. He looked on her, counting that his hard sight could make her vapourize. No effect. "What a hell you need, ensign? Don't you see, that I am BUSY! More than just busy! Do you know, what might happen if you distract Lieutenant Junior grade, russian, explodable doctor??! Many bad things! (pause, deep breath) Well... Quickly tell me what you need."
"I was wondering if you could possibly see to the injury on my face."
"What? You mean that little scratch?! You know, we have much more urgent patients here! Are you Fleet Admiral or Hero of Soviet Union to have a privilegies? NO! Understood?"
"I realise that, but I would be most grateful. It won't take a moment, and then I can get on with doing my job, just like you can."
"I said, that I am busy, isn't it?!"
"Please?" Alia asked, almost as an appeal, *Dear God! I cannot be that desperate to find out about, Autumn was it? See, I don't even know her name!*
Vladimir raised his head to ceiling and thought "DAMN! I hate ensigns! This one is going to drive me into the ward of Psychiatric Clinic. I'd better get rid of her. Deal quickly and she's gone". He lowered his head and said "OK, OK, OK! Follow me..."
He led her over to a quieter corner of Sickbay and started to assess the injury.
"I can see you're very busy, thank you for taking the time out to help me."
Vladimir stayed silent, concentrating on work. Well, maybe not concentrating, but trying not to hear her.
"How's Lt. Jamieson doing? She was in pretty bad shape when I brought her in earlier."
Vladimir flinched. "It was you who brought her in? Ensign-hero? Well, she'll be ok, but we're having some trouble. Don't worry though, she'll pull through at ease.
Alia allowed herself a small sigh of relief, "Thank God, I was really worried. You know the odd thing? I don't even know her. But I'm still going to make sure those bastards are caught and punished for what they did. Hitting me is one thing, attacking someone to that extent is a complete other."
"(annoyed) Other, other... They will be punished. At least I hope so. Sickbay is barely handling such a stream. If this will continue... I am afraid to think how we will treat all these."
Alia raised a slightly sceptical eyebrow. She had always thought of herself as open minded...but Vampires?
"Do you honestly think that they're Vampires, just...running around on board?"
"Vampires? No... Vampires are only in fairy tales. However, perhaps, all this time, passed after our departure is just a dream. I don't know how to answer..."
"Carefully and quietly if I were you, the rumours are already unnerving people as it is, I heard that even a cardboard cut-out had the misfortune of being attacked recently. I suppose it's what fairy tales does to the mind...yet...I don't know. However, I can't go with your dream theory, the back of the Lord's hand across my face felt real enough to me."
A thoughtful moment of silence was suddenly broken by the doctor,
"Oh, by the way, I heard rumours that you have doctor in the brig. Are they true?"
"Dr. Sansky? Oh yes, our inventive friend, he's in the brig all right." Alia answered with a slightly bemused tone.
"Sansky? What he did to be placed into the brig? Arson, steal, robber, rape, murder, high treason?"
"Nope. After he was escorted to the brig, it seems he didn't enjoy our hospitality, he broke out, assaulting one of our officers, and has now ended up back where he started. One thing I'll say for him, he sure has nerve, I wouldn't want to get on the wrong side of Lt. Darkstar - an angry Darkstar is a formidable Darkstar."
"Wow! Sansky seemed so calm and normal man..."
"That's what they all say...How's my 'little scratch' coming along?"
Grumpiness returned to Vladimir "All as I said. Nothing serious. Bone wasn't touched. In fact, you're much healthier than me..."
"Perhaps you're right." She said casting her eye over him, "You should take more care of yourself, Doctor, it looks like you put yourself under far too much stress, you might give yourself a heart attack one day if the reception I received from you earlier is how you great all of your patients." Alia added with a playful and good humoured smile.
Explosion... Only this word can be accepted for Vladimir's mind. However, his mind wondrously dealed with it and he managed to smile. Without any emotion.
"Well, I've got Vampires to catch. Thank you for your assistance." And just before she left, Alia added, "And cheer up, it might never happen."
As Alia leaved Vladimir gave a sigh of relief. He thought "She's gone! At last! Why fortune always turns her back to me? Not even a little surgery! Only ironic ensigns with scratches! It drives me crazy!"
The Bram Stoker Book Club
Ensigns Chuck Copperpot and Alia Drakely
Chester Copperpot sat in the brig, continuing his reading, when was startled out of his seat, knocking his copy of "The Trojan Women" off of the desk and to the floor in the process. He picked up the phaser rifle that was sitting on his desk, made sure the prisoner was secured, and went to investigate.
In the hallway, he saw a humanoid figure and a Starfleet officer grappling against the near wall. Now, despite his other failings in Starfleet Academy - among them poor grades, lack of attendance, and paper-thin attention span - Chester was always quite the shot with a rifle or pistol. He confidently took aim at the figure and released a shot, a shot which passed seamlessly through the figure and charred the wall behind him.
"What in blazes?!" Copperpot exclaimed. This was the first time he'd left the brig aside from to go back to his quarters in the short time he'd been on the Galaxy. It was a rude greeting, and it rattled him. He stood dumbfounded for a moment. The assailant was distracted, allowing the woman in the Starfleet uniform to escape.
"If I wouldn't be troubling you, would you mind helping me kill this parasitic bastard?" Alia Drakely asked in that familiarly understated way as she staggered from her assailant's grasp.
"Alia?" Chester recognized his old friend from the Academy Classical Literature Association. "You're on this ship?" The man at whom he had fired started to make his way toward them. He seemed very angry. Despite his previous lack of success, Chester pointed the phaser rifle at the advancing madman. "And you seem to be getting along famously with this gentleman. Was he an instructor of yours at the Academy?"
"Must be a knack I...Ahh!" It seemed the Lord had grown tired of playing with her and was becoming annoyed, having sent her flying heavily into the wall.
"You will not win. You're wasting your time." the Lord intoned as he stood over her.
"Hey, Chuck, would you mind awfully throwing over that stake." Alia managed after getting her breath back from the painful impact.
"Stake?" he hurriedly looked round the area she had indicated with a jerk of her head. Sure enough, he found a perfectly sharpened wooden stake lying on the ground. Stooping to pick it up, he said in an entirely deadpan manner, "A stake. You have a stake. Of course you do."
As he straightened, he didn't even feel the presence that was far too close for comfort. The first he knew of the Lord switching his attentions on to him was the shoots of pain emanating from the iron grip of Lord Vlad round his wrist, causing him to drop the stake.
Lord Vlad clamped his other hand onto Copperpot's shoulder and pushed forward, leaving Chuck with little choice but to walk backwards.
"You are a fool. To think that you could even comprehend what I am capable of is insulting." Lord Vlad declared as he forced Chester back.
"You shan't make such an imprudent mistake again..." But Copperpot suddenly felt himself stumble backwards as Vlad abruptly released his grip of him. When Chuck looked up to see what had caused the Lord to free him, he saw a shocked looking Vlad looking down at a sharp point that was poking out from his chest.
Alia hurried over from behind the Lord, where she had heartily rammed the stake through him, and helped her friend off the floor.
"Thank you for being such a good distraction, Chuck."
"Oh...of course," he said, still dumbfounded and more than a little freaked out. "You're most welcome."
They both turned to look at what was happening to the Lord, but all they saw was his head rise slowly up to look back at them. He was laughing.
Chester and Alia looked at each other, the clear message of 'oh dear' conveyed in their glance.
Alia was about to stride forward and try a different method of attack, the sound of Lord Vlad's laughter having started to grate, when the area was suddenly swarming with small black creatures before becoming completely empty with no signs of the Lord having ever been there, leaving the stake to fall redundantly to the floor with a hollow clunk.
There were a few long moments of silence.
"So, I was just wondering...what gave you the notion that it was a good idea to start attacking people with wooden stakes?" Chester suddenly said, moving his hand in small semicircles as he listened to his wrist make sounds wrists were never intended to make.
Alia, gripping her painful side as she evened out her breathing, blood lazily flowing from various cuts scattered over her body, but still producing a classic, light-hearted smile for her friend, said,
"I reasoned that regardless of whether he was actually a vampire or not, a wooden stake had to be better than a damned phaser; with all the use they are, a stake could hardly be worse. And I thought 'Commander Elaithin would be more accommodating to a wooden stake than me stalking up and down the ship with my House sword."
"Right," Chuck said, elongating the word and pausing for a long while afterward. "Vampires. Are you feeling quite well?"
"Haven't you read any of the security updates?" she asked. "They're not proper vampires, but they may as well be."
"Oh," Chester said, stroking his chin. "I suppose I should have." He bent down and picked up the stake, handing it to Alia as they started walking down the corridor. "So, where to?"
"Well," she said. "I'm going vampire hunting. Care to tag along? We can catch up on old times, talk about books..."
"Kill vampires..." Chuck said, mimicking her tone. "You know, I've only a few dozen pages of 'The Trojan Women' left. Is there any way this could wait?"
She whacked him in the arm with the wooden stake, telling him to knock it off. He did, and they continued cautiously down the corridor.
"Honestly, Alia," he said after a while, "a wooden stake?"
"Oh, shut up."
"Helping the Unconscious"
By Lieutenant jg Electra Reece
Assistant Chief of Operations
Featuring: Ariana Kenai, Nurse
Lexa watched James get dragged off by the Vulcan and shook her head. She wasn't sure, but she thought she must be dreaming. Had he really just tried to kiss her? Or had the blood loss caused a hallucination? She swung her legs over the side of the biobed and slid to the floor. The Vulcan had said that they couldn't leave sickbay but could help out here.
Lexa sighed and shivered. She knew that she was perfectly capable of helping. Especially in this area. She did, after all, have a medical degree, though she hated dealing with people so she didn't go into medicine. But this was a crisis and she felt fine, though she was confined to the medical section until they figured out what was going on exactly.
She looked around and saw an unconscious woman in a gold uniform on a biobed across the room. No one was tending to her. Lexa nodded and decided to check on her.
Upon reaching the bedside, she glanced at the readings above the bed. All of the readings were at least a little off. Her blood pressure was significantly lowered from the human norm, her temperature was lowered her pulse slow. Lexa picked up a medical tricorder lying near the bed and opened it, scanning the figure. It confirmed her suspicion. The woman was suffering from severe blood loss, much like Lexa herself had been, and James, as well.
Lexa checked the connections on the apparatus that was giving the patient a transfusion and nodded. Everything was fine. The woman should recover in time, as long as the transfusion continued. She smiled. She set the tricorder to take more detailed readings for her to study later as she gazed down at the woman and noticed the two pips on her collar. As the scan continued, Lexa wondered who the woman was and how she had become a victim.
A soft sound behind her made Lexa spin around. A nurse stood there. "Can I help you, ma'am?"
"I-I-I ... I was just checking on her. No one was around and I wanted to make sure she was alright. Is .. is that wrong? The Vulcan said to help, since we were ambulatory but couldn't leave and I have a medical degree and I didn't change anything, I was just taking scans and looking at the readings and I don't even know who she is but I wanted to help and I don't deal really well with patients who are awake, I found out and so I decided to help with the ones who aren't and -"
The nurse interrupted. "It's alright. We can use your help and I'm sure Lieutenant Sanchez doesn't mind. Carry on and if you have any questions, ask me. My name's Ariana Kenai. Don't change anything on their charts or treatment. But if you discover anything new, that would be great. We really are fairly at a loss, 'lieutenant."
"Thanks. I'm Electra Reece." The nurse nodded and walked to a biobed across the room where a Vulcan woman moaned. Lexa turned back to the tricorder and saved the scans before moving on to the next unconscious victim.
By Jill as Riana Parstran NPC and a number of others.
Riana scowled as her team prowled through the deck. She paused in the cargo bay and sighed. Blood was still there and it was being sealed off… The officer had been found. She walked up and tapped Ral on the shoulder. “What happened?” “One of the doctors must have gotten on the wrong side of our guests.. she was pretty messed up they said.” Ria paled.
“Which doctor Lex?”
“Dr Jamieson.. pity really.. such a nice young woman.” She glanced up at Ria. “Riana you ok.. you look kinda pale.” “Yeah I am fine… This fight just got personal.” She said as she grabbed her team and left the room. Ral stared after her and sighed. “Oh boy there she goes.”
Outside the cargo bay Ria led her team into a spread and search pattern. She wasn’t letting this lot of so called vampires get away with this one. This was definately personal.
“The Walk of Seconds”
By Lt. (jg) Heather Grant-Wellington
NPC: Ensign Indiana Brisbane
***A few hours before Red Alert**********
Indiana gently shook her shoulders, and whispered for her to wake up. Heather stirred, not willing to wake up.
“You’ll be late.”
Heather opened her eyes and saw Indiana sitting on the edge of the bed.
“I feel like I just went to sleep.” She groaned.
“Well, two hours ago. Beta shift is due to start in half an hour.” Heather’s widened. “I better get movin’.” Indiana stood up to allow her to roll out of bed and suggested that he’ll wait for her in the living room. She smiled and waited until he departed, before having a shower. Since she was not in her quarters, she had to put back on the uniform she had slept in.
As she stood under the steaming water, flashbacks of the night before played havoc with her mind. No matter how she tried not to, she could not stop remembering how she found her lover and room mate on the floor in her shared quarters. If Indiana had not being there, she would of surely be either still in that room or in sickbay. Sweet Indiana, always her friend when in need, and yet, came close to being lost due to her ignorance.
Finishing her quick shower, she changed back in to her uniform and stepped out into the living area, where Indiana had a cup of tea waiting.
“So, which shift are you rostered on?” she asked.
“Gamma shift on the battle bridge. I’ll probably go back to sleep once you go to yours.” Heather looked at him sympathetically. “You could of just set an alarm for me to wake up to.” “No, ya right. Besides, I have a distinct feeling you would of slept through an alarm.” She quickly covered a large yawn and nodded her head. “Most likely.”
Heather drank her tea moderately and double checked her self presentation.
“Right. I’m outta ‘ere. Thanks for letting me stay.” “Ya welcome. What will you do about your quarters?” “I’ll think about that later, after my shift.” She paused and smiled at him. “I’ll catcha later.” “Yep. See ya.”
Heather turned and exited the quarters. In the corridor, she had to stop to get her bearings. Once she had them, she proceeded to the nearest turbolift to the bridge.
Since she was on the opposite side of the deck to her quarters, she ended up passing both Autumn’s quarters and Jessie’s, something she did not do when reporting for duty.
She rounded a corner and walked down a doorless corridor to the turbolift.
As she approached the lift, the doors slid open and an attractive looking woman stepped out casually. Heather smiled politely as she passed the woman, whom gave her a devilish expression.
“He’s delicious good.”
Heather returned her sights to the lift, taking a second or two to register. Frowning, she stopped and turned around. “I’m sorry?” she remarked in confussion.
The woman had also stopped and just looked at her. “That man who was chasing you earlier, he is so easily detained and can entertain like the best of them.” Heather still had no idea what this woman was referring to and cautiously took two steps towards her.
“I was not chased earlier by a man. Perhaps you have the wrong woman.” Woman blinked seductively. “Oh yes were. You were running along Deck 10.
Surely you remember leaving Ten Forward.” Heather was still confused. “I did leave Ten Forward some hours ago, but nobody followed me personally. However, the time between me leaving Ten Forward and waking up in Sickbay is still a blur. So, please forgive me for being unable understand you’re referring to.” She paused. “I hate to be, umm, impolite but I really need to go and report for duty. It was…. interesting to talk to you.” Heather turned around and resumed her course for the bridge. “In time, the truth will reveal itself. When it does, you won’t be able to trust another soul. At that time, you will also reach a state where you will no longer be able to resist our temptation.” The lieutenant junior grade felt a chill tingle along her spine at the words, which added to her confusion. If she wasn’t in such a hurry, Heather would of considered turning around to attempt to gain some sort of clarification, but chose to continue on her way in ignorance. What she had not realised, was the direction in which the woman was heading and that what she really meant, was that she was on her way for seconds and possibly shatter Heather’s world even more.
"Coffe Break musings"
Starring Rebecca von Ernst.
The soft murmuring tones of people gathering in small conversation knots gave a warm, homey atmosphere to the USS Galaxy's Main Briefing Room. The impromptu meeting had broken up a few moments earlier to give everyone a few minutes to stretch their legs/tentacles/ talons, and now the various members of the Senior Staff were milling about in small groups discussing the current state of affairs in hushed tones.
Captain Price had pulled Commander Thomas off to the side privately, and was even now discussing some matter of great import, his face a grim mask of urgency, while Thomas nodded sagely.
Off near the replicator, another knot of officers were ordering up a quick Earl Grey (Official Drink of Starfleet) while catching up on each others unofficial thoughts on the situation.
Drs.Dothan and Murphy were still debating back and forth about the proposed scanning procedures to locate the unwanted Sanguanarian guests, While Lt. Commander Elaithin was checking in with the rest of security concerning the search efforts currently underway.
Even the normally stoic Seth Zonheib seemed positively bubbly as he mutter a few sentences in short monosyllabic words. Currently he was expounding on great detail concerning his primary philosophical questions about life.
"Tribbles..." the lizard said, "Deep fried or on a stick...the eternal mystery."
Across the room though, one member of the crew stood apart and alone. The sad form of Lt. Rebecca von Ernst found herself near the huge bay windows looking out on the vast expanse of interstellar space, and contemplating the wonder of it all. The rear-ward looking windows revealed a brilliant vista of stars streaming by at a steady Warp 8 as the wayward USS Galaxy chugged its merry way across the Milky Way destined for points unknown.
One of the main subjects of this very meeting in fact was the rather disconcerting fact that nobody on board knew WHERE in the heck they were heading save for a rather general impression that they were on their way out of the galactic plane.
This course was problematic at best considering Starfleet's disastrous history with crossing that foreboding barrier.
The nearness of this danger perhaps Rebecca understood better than most seeing as how she had manually plotted the course based on obscure star sightings and a lot of mental number-crunching. In the end however, it really didn't matter. The Galaxy was out of control and it didn't make a difference if it was heading out of the Milky Way or was simply on its way to Grandma's House.
Rebecca sighed, her warm breath misting a little patch of fog on the Transparent Aluminum window before her. Idly wiping away the mist, she allowed her thin shoulders to slump in dejection and self doubt. Her recent performance on the bridge was less than stellar, and no doubts the Captain and Commander Thomas were even now discussing how to ship this redheaded freak off their precious ship. Neither man made any pretence about welcoming her presence here, and Commander Thomas in particular seemed quite hostile towards the young girl. He saw Rebecca as a severe liability in a complex situation, and a sure-fire recipe for disaster when the Ferengi Hits the Fan.
Placed in charge of the bridge for five minutes, and she lets the entire ship get kidnapped off to some unknown Vampire never-neverland. She was a liability and a big one.
Unfortunately Rebecca couldn't agree more with Thomas's impression. The skinny young redhead was quite aware of her many flaws, and had herself argued many times against her being placed in any sort of responsibility.
Well that was not quite accurate..Rebecca was too scared to argue with anybody about anything, but rather she merely cringed vehemently when the subject of putting her in charge came up. Unfortunately her wants and desires were never taken into consideration.
"Not part of the equation." She mumbled to herself and the stars outside.
In the seeming long years since the shy, skittish teenager had nervously stepped off the shuttle form Minnesota, and into the bright sunlight of the San Francisco Bay area, Rebecca had always seemed to hold a strange dual nature in Starfleet's eyes.
Originally recruited by the Academy for the sciences division, (Due to her outstanding Mathematics scores), the overwhelmed young girl had rapidly been drawn up in the confusing wartime politics of Dominion War Earth.
As the Fleet suffered loss after loss, and the combat death tolls reached into the millions, it became apparent that the post War fleet would be a sadly inexperienced and depleted one. It was then the mousy little bookworm from the Advanced Mathematics division came to the attention of a certain panel of Fleet Admirals. It seemed this previously unknown little girl...a sophomore of all things, actually managed to score a 100% on one of the Academy's more challenging Combat simulators.
To Cadet third Class von Ernst the test had merely been a dreaded exercise required as part of the 'rounded' education at the Academy. She entered the simulator...calculated the firing and maneuvering parameters of the simulated enemy fleet, and produced an equation to deal with them. While the holographic Breen ships were still burning in space, and the Test-Proctors were staring open-mouthed, the tiny girl quietly collected her books, and headed off to her next Math class without a second glance.
Two weeks later Cadet von Ernst was forcibly reassigned to the Academy's Tactical School, and Rebecca's life had been complicated ever since.
Now out for three years (had it really been that long) Lieutenant von Ernst was teaching herself a new equation in probabilities. Although Human behavior was difficult to predict, the wheels of bureaucracy were easily observable for intrinsic Mathematical patterns of red-tape and delay.
It was becoming increasingly obvious that old Admiral Hoth..Rebecca's personnel champion since those early Academy days was going to push and push and push until her either got what he wanted out of her, or it killed her. Probably the former since Rebecca was too scared to fail.
More and more responsibility was going to be heaped upon her fragile shoulders...like today...and eventually she was going to be put in a position to make a grave enough mistake to kill both her and a lot of people around her.
Hoth would get his weapon..and more than likely it would blow up in his face.
More and more however, Rebecca found herself not even caring. Where her early years at the Academy frequently found her crying into her pillow over fears and self doubts, lately she found herself more withdrawn from the emotional and mental baggage that went along with her position.
The Galaxy's Tactical Department Looked absolutely stellar...on Paper. The Analytical and organizational skills of its young Chief were crucial for beating back the mountain of paperwork that threatened to bury the entire fleet.
In reality however, the Department was in shambles. Rebecca was almost universally hated, and morale was low amongst the other officers and crew. Confidence in the shaky young girl who had suddenly vaulted the ranks to become the Department head was understandably lacking. Who wanted to follow a kid who couldn't even go five minutes without stuttering or crying?
Sure maybe she was alright at paperwork, and her sim scores still rocked the house...but simulations do not translate well into real life. Rebecca's tragic performance against the Lyrans at Nar Hallas, and her less than stellar performance against the Borg were common knowledge...and that knowledge was poison to a ship's crew.
A sudden giggle from off near the replicator brought Rebecca back the the hear and now again, and she brushed back an errant strand of red hair that had fallen across her freckled face. It was easy for the others to laugh...to socialize and enjoy one another's company.even during the current crisis. It was good to have friends and associates one could count on like that, but Rebecca had none.
Her mother's visit, while welcome, was temporary at best, and her few brief forays into friendships had died early deaths, the relationships withering on the vine quickly.
Corgan, Lexa, Adrian..all ignoring her. Surok dead..O' Grady, Thomas, and the Captain, all scaring her beyond reason..
In this too, she found herself not really caring anymore. Let them rant and rave....She would stand silent with eyes downcast and feel her soul shrivel up a little more each time they did, until there was nothing left of her. Maybe then, when there was nothing left of Rebecca.maybe then Hoth would get his weapon..maybe then Nilani would get her kiss..maybe then, when she was an empty shell of shame and guilt she could truly become what she was meant to be.
She was born a freak, and would die as one..unmourned, and unloved.....but maybe to some..merely useful.
2374-Starfleet Academy, San Francisco, Earth Featuring the irrepressible 4th year cadet Lysander VanderPuls-Hawksley And the lovely and talented 1st year cadet Miette Michelle Remmington plus Fleet Captain Tomoken Rapsheur, Red Squadron Faculty Advisor and Senior Flight Instructor (NPC)
The Captain's bellow was legendary at the Academy, for it's ability to be heard through durasteel and abaletive armor. Right now it was being directed at the unfortunate Third Year middy who'd drawn yeoman's duty in the Flight Ops Department offices. The slight terran girl flinched, and drew her blonde head back from 'Cappie's' office long enough to glare at Lysander. Like it was *HIS* fault the Cappie was in a bad mood? Actually, it probally was...
"Ummm.....the Captain will see you now, Cadet Commander." she managed to get out.
"...and do NOT call him "Cadet-Commander' again...the last thing I need is his benighted head to get swollen up more..." followed her out of the office, before the heavy door cut off 'Cappie's' continuing diatribe against all things Lysanderish.
Lysander stood, and tugged the Cadet jumpsuit down over his long lean torso. With a wink at the blonde terran cadet, he marched into the office. Cappie was behind his desk, with the models of the various fighters and small craft he'd commanded over a long career almost blocking his view of the chairs before the desk.
"Sir. Fourth Year Cadet VanderPuls-Hawksly reporting to the Fleet Captain as ordered..."
"Shut up. Just shut up. Don't sit down, just stand there like the uselesss lump of protoplasm you are. I suppose you know why I called you in...again...don't you son?" Cappie was rubbing his temples, and his voice was normal. NOT a good sign. Cappie was his most cutting when he wasn't yelling...
"Sir no sir. This cadet has no knowledge as to why..." Lysander's mind was a-whirl. What had he been caught doing now? Or was this one of the famed 'fishing trips' Cappie took...trying to see what a cadet would admit to?
"Horseshi...err...hockey. Flight Simulator 334. That number ring a bell? Someone rigging it so that the flight safety protocols showed green, when in reality the rudders of the F- 976 Starfighter being simulated would lock in max right pull? The cadet undergong testing locked in a continious right circle until he flies into something and fails the mission parameters? Someone with a damn good sense of programming flight ops into a simulator, but damn little common sense as to what they're programming? Someone who would find a stunt like this amusing? Any of this sound familiar to *YOU*...son?"
Lysander fought an insane impulse to grin. So THAT was it? Whew...he thought they'd found out about the holodeck programs for a moment...or the unauthorized stop he'd made during that training flight...or even that time last week he and the Vice Commandants daughter had...
"Sir, no sir. Not familiar at all sir. Wasn't that simulator assigned to the Blue Squadron today, sir? I believe that my Red Squadron was assigned simulators 455 through 450 for..."
"Shut up. Just shut up. I damn well KNOW WHAT SIMULATORS WERE ASSIGNED WHICH SQUADRON..." Cappie paused to calm himself down here... "Since it's my damn job to supervise all cadets in flight ops and assigned those simulators to Red. You intentionally rigged that simulator to siderail the Blue Squadron, to show up the cadet we were going to transfer to Red Squadron. Didn't you?"
"Sir, no sir. I just feel that the decision to put a first year Cadet onto my.."
Cappie's eyes went slitlike as he held up his hand to cut off the cadet.
"You have no idea how this pains me, but I will not tolerate your ....ideas...regarding proper military decorum to siderail the training of any recruit here. Red Squadron is an Academy tradition for a reason, it's a priviledge, not a right. I don't care how well you fly, or any cadet flies, they only fly Red Squadron at *MY* pleasure, and only if *I* think they deserve it. Cadet RTemmington is almost as good a pilot as you, and definatly better behaved, which isn't saying a lot as she's already racked her share of demerits for a smart mouth. But YOUR lack of discipline makes her look like a Vulcan Acolyte. Wipe that asnine smirk off your face, because you've *REALLY* screwed the pooch this time. Red Squadron is no longer 'your' squadron. I'm turning the Cadet- Commandership over to Cadet T'rel..." "Smeg! Err...sir. That's a bad ...errr...Sir! This cadet humbly..."
"Shut UP, LYSANDER! Humble isn't even in your vocabulary, so let's drop the kay-deet crap. Face it...T'Rel is the the second best pilot here at the Academy, and she doesn't have the disciplinary problems that force me to remove you. Dammit son, your record looks like a list of the Uniform Military Code...the only violations I DON'T recall seing attached to your name is murder or assasination of a head of state, and privately, I think they just never caught you doing either! You've been disciplined more than TWELVE other Cadets put together, and frankly, what keeps you here is only Admiral Hoth's...errr...nevermind that.
Here's the deal for you. You shut up, give up Red Squadron, concentrate on pulling your grades out of the toilet, graduate (in itself a small miracle) and THEN we'll see about putting you back in a pilot's couch again. Maybe." Lysander's head was whirling. He'd never thought he'd like commanding others, but his time on Red Squadron had changed that attitude. He'd really enjoyed the comeraderie and the occasional headache of leading the squad. And now? It was going away again.
"Sir. This isn't like the other times, that you pulled me off the Squadron before...is it Sir?"
"No. This is diferent, son. I have to...do...what I'm about to do because I'm a Starfleet officer. I don't like it, I don't like being ordered to do it, but I will do it. Maybe one day, you'll understand that." Cappie keyed his intercom and said to the yeoman cadet "Send in the first year cadet." *** *** ***
"The captain will see you know," the blond cadet said to Remy.
"Yipdee skipdee," Remy muttered as she crossed through the doors. She knew that this time she wasn't having to see a superior about something SHE did wrong, but that didn't mean she was all excited.
The captain sat behind his desk, looking all nice and happy and not at all like he had a stick rammed up his butt. The cadet commander of the red squadron didn't look all that happy either.
"Cadet Remmington, this is Cadet Vander Puls Hawksely. You probably have heard of him. He's the one responsible for that unfortunate stunt which was pulled." The captain practically growled. "He is being removed of command."
That explained why the rather hot looking guy was upset looking. Oh, yes, she'd heard of the infamous Cadet Charming. Most of the girls either loved or hated him, and those who hated him only did so because they once loved him. Remy looked him up and down. Good build, good ass. Not as devastatingly gorgeous as she had heard but still pretty damn fine.
"So, this is all your fault?" Remy asked him. He didn't say anything. He didn't look particularly ashamed. "Well, okay. Maybe if you didn't have as tight of an ass, I wouldn't forgive you, but as is, I suppose it's acceptable. Of course, if you try pulling anything on me again, I'll kick that tight little ass of yours to the moon and back, but I'm pretty sure we won't have any more problems." She turned to the captain who seemed fairly speechless. "Was there anything else?"
"Uh. . .uh. . .no, that's all cadet."
"Good, then by your leave, I'll let you finish yelling at Cadet Charming here, and I'll be on my way. G'day, Captain, Lysander." And with that, Remy left the room.
Cappie pointed one finger at Lysander.
"Cadet 'Charming?' Do not make the mistake of thinking that the young lady would _not_ kick your tail up to the zero-gee facility at Camp Armstrong Moonbase if you look cross eyed at her again. There goes the newest addition to Red Squadron. She's taking the place of T'rel, who's replacing YOU. She's the daughter of a friend of mine, and she's been taking a bad rap. She does NOT need you interferring with her. Stay the hell away from her, her simulators, and Red Squadron or by damn, I'll string your reproductive organs so high off the Academy flagpoles that it'll take a whole platoon of Fed Marines to ..."
Lysander let Cappie's lecture slough over him like an ultrasonic shower. He'd heard it all before, and he hadn't rigged that simulator knowing Remy was going to use it, he'd just wanted to make sure that Blue was kept in their rightful Number Two slot by having one pilot screw up baaaaaaaddddd. Everything about Miette Michelle Remmington said that she'd make a fine addition to the Fleet, and lord knows she had big enough balls to fly with Lysander anytime. She was sort of cute too, but waaayyyy too touchy about her family tragedy. Not like the one who held Lysander's heart in an iron grip...enough of that... Sure he'd screwed up by getting caught, but that was nothing new...
But one thought kept going through his head...
~Who the blazing Smegging nebulaes was this 'Admiral Hoth' and why would he give a plugged latnium pellet about me?~
“Sojourn With The Sanguinarian”
By Lieutenant jg. James Lionel Corgan
Operations Officer, USS Galaxy
Location: Sickbay (he’ll be here for awhile)
The Sanguinarians hit the Galaxy, turning sickbay into an angry hornet’s nest of activity. James thought there was no lull in the doctor’s routine. He was wrong. The doctors scrambled to stabilize the next batch of victims to come transporting to their door. The latest attack victims were immediately attended to by the combat medics and nurses. They were rushed into biobeds while other nurses pumped stabilizing drugs into their systems and doctors checked their lifesigns.
The extent of James Corgan’s medical training involved First Aid 101 at the academy, and a rudimentary crash course on battlefield medic training. At least he was not useless. Sickbay could always use a strong set of arms to carry people into biobeds, or pin people down while they suffered from convulsions. James was used to such work. Many times before at such famous battles as Chin’toka did he have to carry his wounded comrades to safety. He saw horrible sights, of people screaming in agony after being hit with polaron beams, people being injected with nanoprobes, of lacerations and disembowelments from all manners of pointy and sharp weapons. Over the years, James has developed a thick skin when it came to bodily harm.
Looking into the faces of the latest victims, he saw nothing like this before. The longhaired security officer he lifted up felt nearly cold to the touch. His skin was deathly pale enough to resemble a Borg’s dull hue.
“Oh my god…” James whispered.
“We have another blood loss victim! I need Terran type O positive blood here, now!” A doctor yelled over his head. James took the shoulders of the unconscious man as the doctor lifted up the legs.
“We’re out of type 0, sir! We may have some Bolian blood that’s compatible.” One of the nurses said.
“Whatever works. Get it over here, stat!”
The doctor and operations officer slid the felled security officer onto the biobed. James ran off to take care of the next victim, leaving the doctor to administer treatment. The next victim was leaned up against the wall. James cautiously approached what looked like a woman. She tucked her head into her lap and curled up like a ball, her red hands shaking and her voice sobbing out to a stranger.
“Ma’am? Are you ok?” James asked.
“No, I am not ok…” She shuttered, “I need him. I need Lord Vlad…”
“Lady, come with me. We’ll get you treatment.” James tapped her on the shoulder.
“No, you don’t understand… I cannot be treated… not unless he comes back.” She moaned.
“Mrs. T’lan, I must get you to a doctor. You need to be treated.” James insisted.
“You don’t understand… I need him… I must be with him… I cannot tell you why…”
“C’mon ma’am. I don’t have time to argue with you.”
“YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND!”
The woman’s face emerged from her lap, with tears streaming down her rosy face. Sweat trickled down her forehead as freely as the tears in her eyes. Her body shook, her eyes stared with the wildness of an animal. James recoiled away in amazement. He knew from experience that she was not ok. The woman was a Vulcan, going through the final stages of the blood fever. Pon’farr ravaged her pain wracked body.
“Yes I do. I know what is going on. We must find your mate quickly.” James grabbed at the woman’s arm.
She swatted Corgan’s arm away, “No! He abandoned me! He left my to die this way. I want him back. I want him now! Where is he? Where is Vlad?”
Vlad’s name was a surprise to James Corgan’s ears. He didn’t believe for a second that the Sanguinarian could be the mate of Lieutenant jg. T’lan. How it was possible was unknown to him.
“Lady, I insist. It looks like you’ll need to be sedated until your mate comes… but then again I’m no doctor. You better at least lay down on a bed. That much I know.” James put his hand on her shoulder. “Come with me.”
“NO!” She shrieked. Corgan’s hand was grappled. A surprised look emerged from Corgan’s face as T’lan hit him full force with an open palmed strike. He felt the sickening crunch of cartilage and bone crack, and the blood splurted freely from his busted nose. A world of pain exploded in his ribs as he felt T’lan slam her rock hard Vulcan fist into his torso. As a coup de gras, T’lan knocked the wind out of him with a punch to the chest, and sent him sprawling onto the floor with a vicious backhand to the jaw. His sight was scrambled by the flurry of blows. Before he knew it, James tasted the blood from his nose and felt the stinging pang of bruised ribs.
Doctors turned their heads to see what was disturbing their important work. A few of the doctors, nurses, and security personnel tackled Lieutenant T’lan. The enraged and blood fever blinded Vulcan fought off the dozens of arms and legs holding her down.
“I need a hypospray, NOW!” One of the doctors screamed urgently.
James stole a hypospray from a cart of supplies. He reloaded the small device with a vial of clear fluid; the base medicine used by the miniature replicator to synthesize hundreds of different types of drugs.
“Anestizine.” The doctor yelled.
“How?” James asked, “What do I push?”
“1… 3….2…3… hurry it up Ugggghhhhhh!” The doctor received a faceful of fist, courtesy of T’lan, after a security officer lost his grip on the Vulcan’s arms. Even with six people, restraining a Vulcan with three times the strength of a human was difficult to do.
James punched in the hypospray’s combination on the underside of the main injector. The tiny metal buttons chirped with each combination. “1…3…2...3” He repeated. The hypospray gave him a final chirp, auditing the sound of ‘good to go’.
“Here you go.” Corgan threw the hypospray. The doctor caught the device in midair and injected T’lan with the tranquilizing drug. Her high strung body went limp in seconds.
“Make sure to activate the stasis field on her bed. I don’t want her flipping out again.” The doctor ordered. Piles of people lifted her prone body onto a biobed and activated the forcefield. It shimmered over her bed. As quickly as it appeared, the forcefield disappeared from view.
James nursed his cracked rib and wiped the blood off his nose with a spare towel. His nose stung every time his hand came near, but not as badly as his ribs felt at the moment. One concerned doctor, the Vulcan medic who dragged him away from Electra Reece, confronted Corgan. Dr. Lemur, if he remembered properly.
“Are you in need of assistance?” Lemur asked.
“No, I’ll be fine. I could use a bone and tissue regenerator. I’ll get out of your way and get all that done, if you don’t mind.” James muffled. He held the towel to his nose. The cloth was turning an increasingly dark red.
“Very well. We have not used such supplies yet, so consider yourself fortunate. You will find what you are looking for in the cart over there.” Lemur pointed out to the same cart James acquired the hypospray.
“Thank you, doc. I’ll be going now, that is… if you don’t need me this moment.”
“You are in no condition to give assistance. There have been no more victims so far. You may go. If you need privacy, use the CO’s office.”
James procured his items and dragged himself into the abandoned office. He sat up on the cushy desk seat. He pushed up his uniform shirt, and whistled. The bruising was Vulcan fist sized, and purple enough to be almost black. He passed the bone regenerator over the wound. The terrible bruise was vanquished with the tissue regenerator. Seconds later, a clean, pinkish patch was all that was left. Even the pain was gone from the wound.
His nose still stung greatly. The blood was stanched enough to treat his broken nose. He dropped the towel on the desk and gripped his nose with both hands. A sudden jerk made a painful sounding crunch as he set the nose back in place.
“Ahhhhhhh…. motherf**ker!” He cursed loudly. The tough guy Starfleet Marines made the practice look so easy to do. Quite the opposite, his nose hurt nearly as bad as before. He quickly passed the bone regenerator over the wound. He felt the bones knit and the cartilage regrow itself. The feeling was strange and tingly all over. With the bone healed, he discarded the bone regenerator and healed the bruising with his tissue regenerator.
He looked himself over using the reflection of an LCARS panel. Other than a light hue of red, the skin on his ribs and his nose looked perfect. Even the nose was no longer crooked. He smiled and privately congratulated himself for healing in half the time it would take the doctors to do it.
His celebration was short lived. The tingling on the back of his spine grew, growing stronger than the residual itch on his nose. He had the feeling something else was around. He looked up, confirming his suspicions. The intruder resembled somebody familiar, but the memory was fogged and blurred.
“Who are you?” James asked.
The woman looked strongly familiar, like an acquaintance seen once before, a face he remembered with a name he did not. Then it struck him. The woman had dark, wavy hair, soft brown eyes and a short and revealing black dress.
“You… you’re that woman… it was you in the holodeck, wasn’t it?” He accused.
The woman in the black dress smiled warm enough to melt James’ heart. The feeling came back to him, re-awakening another chunk of memory from the holodeck. She was so close to him, so intimate it was embarrassing. There was no self-control, only animal desire. He felt instantly ashamed.
“It was you, wasn’t it? What did you do to me?” He pressed the issue.
She spoke in her heavenly sweet voice, “Do you really want to know? I’ll show you, as insignificant as it is. Do you remember now?”
A flash flood of memories came in that shocked Corgan’s soul to the core. He saw images of depravity. Both he and the woman were locked in intimate embrace. The smells and touches were intoxicatingly beautiful. The words of encouragement she spoke sounded so genuine and loving, he couldn’t tell the difference between love and lust. It felt so good to be in her, he wanted it again. ~”NO!”~ He screamed in his mind. He realized the full extent of her manipulation. He was being duped. The woman, whatever she was, took the form of his most intimate desire, and warped it into a dirty affair. He felt dirty being near whatever this sexual being was.
“You… violated me? How could you?” James felt seething anger towards the woman. “Who or what the hell are you?”
“You don’t realize yet? Come now, you simple creature. Don’t you know? I first saw you on the Tamarian ship. Ever since, I wanted to sample what you had to offer. Have I made it clearer for you?”
“Correct. You are somewhat bright, for a creature I consider dinner anyways. *SIGH* so low on the food chain yet so feisty. It’s almost like you don’t realize your place.”
His mind recalled the final moment of their passionate interlude. His memory recalled perfectly the teeth sinking into neck, and the building climax combined with the orgasmic sensation of the bite overwhelming all thought and reason. “How dare you. You violated me… and God knows how many people on this ship. How dare you!”
“Ahhh ahhh ahhh.” She waved her finger, “Keep it down, or someone might hear you.”
“So what if they do? I do not take too kindly to you desecrating the memory of Lexa. I’m not too happy about being raped and drained of my blood! You violated my body and my mind. I think that’s grounds for sending your ass to the brig, bitch!”
“I’ll kill Lexa.” She warned.
The crafty vampress cornered James in a most heart stopping way. “You wouldn’t. You couldn’t. And if you touch her, by God I’ll have no problem killing you and your friend Vlad.”
Lady Lilith mocked James Corgan. Her laugh was a heartless, amused chuckle that send icicles of pang into his heart. “You? Kill me? Are you serious? Hah ha ha ha ha ha ha… Ohh… how interesting, but seriously I very much hate it when my food develops a mind of it’s own. Let me ask you… how did you think I got in here? Did you see me sneak into the door? I didn’t. If I did, who would stop me. I’m not like that unfortunate Vulcan Vlad tampered with. I can’t be muscled around. In fact, I can’t be stopped.”
“You… you and Vlad put the Pon’farr in T’lan?”
“You are correct again. Hmmm… you’re as smart as you taste, little man. I must say, I was amused with Vlad’s little game with T’lan. She is lucky, you know. She has a day or two to live, instead of a few hours. By that time, Vlad will be back for her.”
“You son of a…”
“Ohhhhh… come now, Corgan.” Lilith frowned, “Don’t you find this game amusing? Matching moral wits with an alien thousands of years older than you? Don’t you think our game with T’lan is amusing? I know a game that’s much more fun… me and Vlad played it with your ‘friend’ Electra. Do you want to know what we played?”
“I’m warning you… I vowed once I’d protect her. Don’t you dare touch Lexa, or else I’ll have to make good on my promise.” James didn’t know what he could do against Lady Lilith. Without his phaser, he felt defenceless, and there was the uncertainty of what she was capable of.
“You? You couldn’t save her from Poet! He can’t reach into your mind and fulfill your desires. He can’t evade an entire ship hunting him down. He couldn’t even pleasure her properly like Lord Vlad did. If we can stop all the efforts your pathetic ship launches at us and still make your beau scream ‘Oh daddy, daddy…’, what makes you think you can stop us?”
James thought for a second how to stop Lilith and all her nonsense. As evil and manipulative as she looked and acted, he believed her every word. The Sanguinarian’s eyes lit up with a twinkle of sinful delight. She was enjoying toying James around like a cat with a wounded mouse.
“Here is the deal, my friend. I know your type. You believe in doing your duty, and are willing to sacrifice your life in order to fulfill an honorable death. Am I right?”
“How…” James stuttered.
“It’s easy. I know all about you James. I know why you fear the Borg so much. I know you hate the Jem’Hadar. I know how guilty you feel about killing others, and how much you love others and deny your feelings. I know that your heart is closed, and I opened it up more for you. Do you think recalling the sight of me in the holodeck during your talk with Counselor Dallas was a coincidence?”
“No… that’s impossible. How did you know?”
“That is not important. Needless to say, you humans cannot comprehend how powerful we are. I know all about you. That’s how I turned into what I am now. I made you realize the full potential of your love for Lexa. Be thankful for that. In exchange for the gift I gave you in advance, and the ability to use it, as well as sparing the life of the one you love, I suggest you do not seek me and Lord Vlad. Your kind is dangerous and crafty. I don’t like hunters. We have enough problems with your Captain… that laughable troll of a bartender and the hunters known as Autumn Jamison and Wilhelm Qwevenson. Stay away from me and Vlad, and we will not become a problem to you or your love.”
“Wait…” James pondered his option, “How will I know you will keep your word?”
“You don’t.” Lilith said as a matter of fact, “Just know there are thousands of people on this ship. We can easily skip you and Electra Reece very easily. My time… it is now over, my dearest…”
Lady Lilith walked away, using an enticing swagger that shook her hips and stretched the fabric in her dress. She passed by the blood stained towel, and upon seeing it, she snatched it up and breathed in its smell.
“Mmmmmmmm… I can still taste that… spice you have in you. As much as I would love to drink from you, pray you don’t see me again. I’ll see you if you break our deal… or if ve are short on livestock. We have a long trip ahead of us, and if you’re lucky, you and a few others might live. Hope you and your lover will survive.”
Lilith’s body turned transparent, into a foggy mist. The thin outlines of her voluptuous body dissipated into finer, silken mist. Then, in a sudden burst, the fog sucked itself into the fine cracks of the wall. A second was all it took for Lady Lilith to disappear, leaving a shaken James Corgan to think over her proposal.
“Look at that creature. She wants me to realize my place? She and her pretty boy may be higher up in the pecking order than I am, but it doesn’t mean I’ll surrender because I’m food! I have to resist… but how?”
Staring out the window of the medical office, he spied Electra Reece scanning Lieutenant T’lan with the tricorder.
“And how do I do it without endangering her?”
"Counseling is not scary, really..."
Lt. Jessie Parry
Lcdr Navarre-Maxwell Shinta
Shinta was looking through her records, it had been awhile since she had seen lieutenant Parry, she knew the young women hated it, but it was time to do a counselling follow up with her. She sent a note to Jessie's quarters, asking her to come in for a session after her shift the next day.
****The next day****
Jessie sighed and walked up to Shinta's office. She hit the bell and waited. She was nervous and wished that she didn't have to do this.
Shinta saw the nervousness straight away. She had hoped that Jessie would be passed that after their last conversation. in general people started to stop being so nervous once they got to know her, and realized that there was really nothing to be scared of. "Have a seat." She said. "And don't worry, this is not a third degree interrogation, I just want to make sure that you are all right."
Jessie nodded and sat down across from Shinta. “Oh I am fine Shinta. Now that he has been put under arrest I am fine.” She smiled.
Shinta just looked at her for a moment. "Then why are you so nervous about being here?" She asked. The answer had come to fast, and often that was an indication that not everything was not fine yet.
Jessie swallowed “Yeah kinda. I know that I shouldn’t be nervous But part of me is.” She sighed. “I thought I was getting on with my life but then things just seemed to pile up again.”
"Care to tell me about it." Shinta nudged gently, while she sipped her tea, and gave the other woman all the time she needed.
Jessie drew in a breath. “I don’t want this job.. I mean I like tactical and that but I really didn’t expect to be Assistant chief so quickly and when James left I found it was up to me…” She paused again. “I was getting my life together and after Simon was arrested well I thought it would calm down.. instead it picked up pace.”
It was something Shinta could sympathize with, and understand that the other women felt overwhelmed. "It won't help if I tell you that you were picked because you are doing a great job." She smiled. "And it is something you want, I do not think that stepping back is an option for you, even if you might think so now. But you have to take things one step at the time. I think it is very important for you that you create a network of people around you to whom you can turn when you feel insecure or overworked. Usually a talk can do a lot of good. Do you have such people around you?" Shinta asked. "And I would like You to come to talk to me, often. I will not be out to get you, and it would stay between the two of us. That way you can take your time and decide if this is what you want."
Jessie nodded. “I have friends on this ship.. and I had James Kincaid.. But he left and the others are a bit wrapped up in their own lives.. I mean Rose is pregnant and is slipping into depression, Autumn is trying to keep Rose healthy and also trying to fit Wilhem into her schedule as well as planning a wedding. Heather is busy with her work and her guy. So talking to them is out of the question.” She smiled at Shinta. “Chaos on the USS Galaxy. It is normal I guess. But I will come and see you often as you have asked.”
"I am glad, and I hope next time you will not be so nervous to meet me." Shinta leaned back in her chair. "But one thing, Jessie. However busy your friends might be with their own lives, you will find that friends will always have time for you, just let them know that you need them. I know that is hard, but you will find it very rewarding if you try and they too. They will somehow notice that something is wrong, and that you are shutting them out. However busy they are with their own lives, they will be happy to help you as well."
Jessie nodded slowly. She looked at Shinta and sighed softly. "I know but I just don't want to interrupt them and stuff" she paused. "I guess I don't want Autumn and Rose to get worried about me.. I mean... I can look after myself and .. after what they saw that night.. I don't want them to rehash it in their heads.. better that they forget it.. or they might be knocking on your door as well... I mean Rose has her own demons and Autumn has as well.."
"Don't make up their minds for them, Jessie. Give them the chance to do that themselves. Also if they have their own demons, they should decide how to deal with them. Maybe seeking help is not so bad after all." Shinta smiled. " Think on that."
Jessie nodded and gave it some thought. “I guess you are right Shinta.” She said softly. “But you know its hard I have never really need to talk things out. But I guess things change huh?” she gave Shinta a crooked smile.
"They do indeed." Shinta smiled back. "And you are learning pretty fast. I am very proud of you."
Jessie nodded and looked at Shinta. “So what’s the prognosis doc? Am I crazy or what?” she flashed a smile at Shinta. “Now that was a joke.. how often do you want to do this chatting?”
"I do not think you are crazy, I never thought that. That is really something that people should understand, you do not only go to a counsellor when you're crazy. The counsellor is just somebody who helps you through tough periods In your life. It is no shame." She said it with a smile, because even if it was a joke she could
see that there was an element of truth in her joke. "We will do this chatting until you feel completely comfortable with me, and the way your life is going. So I cannot give you a fixed answer to that. We do not have to meet in my office the next time, if you feel more comfortable talking somewhere else."
Jessie smiled. “Here is fine.. unless you want to meet elsewhere?”
"No here is fine with me." Shinta said. "How about next week? You can always come sooner if you need to. And there is no shame in that."
"Did Someone get the License Number of that Vampire?"
By Dr Autumn Jamieson, Dr Kira Murphy and Lt (jg) Wilhem Quevvenson
Autumn's first awake thought was, 'Ouch,' the second was, 'I hate Vampires,' and the third was, 'Where the hell am I?' She slowly opened her eyes to see stark whiteness above her. Slowly she shifted her head and was rewarded with the scene of a private room in Med bay. She let out a slight whimper as the pain hit her and she shut her eyes again and tried to will the pain away.
Wilhem was laying beside her just now waking up from his unconscious spell. His head and body hurt, and he remembered all the actions that had caused it, and the dreams she had had. He groaned softly.
Autumn didn't move and waited a few beats. "Did Someone get the license number of that vampire? I am sure it was biting without a permit," she said as softly as she could with out making to much noise or moving her body. She could fell pain all over her body and even though her eyes were shut she still winced with pain.
Wilhem smiled softly, feeling pained as he did so, "It was V-L-A-D-0001. Sorry I made you do that. It hurts to talk. I guess that mental alarm was not the best idea in the world."
"What... Wilhem what the hell happened to you?" she muttered. "Or are you just in here because you like the food?" She reached out a hand and hit the call button. "Mental Alarm?"
Wilhem smiled grimly, "The mental alarm that rings in my head the instant you get met by Vlad. Unfortunately for me, it also funnelled all the actions and dreams that you felt thereafter. I know where you are broken. I can feel them."
Autumn winced at that. "Ok now guess what you are going to do... remove it!" she tried to relax her body enough but with all the pain it wasn't working. She said softly. "Love please remove it... I don't want you to hurt... please."
Wilhem reached with his hand, but could not touch her forehead. "Love, I need to touch your forehead to remove it. I am sorry. I know it is too painful to move much."
Autumn whimpered a bit. She turned her head towards where his voice was coming from hoping it would be enough. "Wil... just do it," she murmured as she did so. "Please... once you do... you stop hurting."
Wilhem was able to place his fingertips gently onto her skull. Concentrating through the pain, he removed his mental contact. Instantly, the pain started to subside. It would still be a while with the residuals of the contact. Like an hour. "Done. Now the pain can recede. Then I will stay here by your side."
Autumn didn't tell him that most of her pain was from her body. She said instead. "Thanks Love." she let her head rest back in a more natural position and winced a bit when her body protested to a slight movement.
Wilhem smiled, a little bit wider, "You're welcome, love. I know that soon the doctors will work on your injuries, and you should feel better."
Autumn gently ran her hand down her side while her body screamed at her in pain. "Yeah... I just want to go home," she whispered as she let her hand drop to her side and she tried hard not to scream.
Wilhem grimaced at that thought, "Do what you have to love. Don't be afraid to call out. It will work for both of us."
Autumn didn't reply. In her mind were the images of her dreams and she just wanted to curl up and sleep. The pain in her body was making that impossible. She turned her head away from him so he wouldn't see the tears.
Wilhem knew she was crying, and he knew she did not want him to know. So he decided to play along for now, "Please Autumn. Let your feelings out. They are natural. You have been violated in a very bad way. It is okay to cry or scream. those are natural feelings."
Autumn just shook her head slowly. "I am fine," she said softly her face still turned away.
Wilhem shook his head softly, "You are not fine, my love. You have just been through a trying circumstance. And what he placed in your mind is evil. I will try to undo that. But I will need your help in the matter. So cry or scream. Whatever. Just do something to try to let the emotions out."
Autumn went to say something but footsteps made her go quiet.
From the other side of Sickbay, one of the nurses had alerted Kira that Autumn had woken up. Heading over, she moved behind Wilhem and tapped him on the shoulder, motioning for him to follow her.
Wilhem got up slowly and painfully, and walked behind Kira until she was ready to talk. "Yes, ma'am?"
When they were out of earshot, Kira spoke to him, "I don't mean to butt in, but I think she needs some time alone. Trust me - if anything happens at all, we will let you know ASAP."
Wilhem looked back at Autumn for a few seconds, then nodded. "Please tell me when she wants to see me again. I wouldn't want to disappoint her."
"Wilhem, I know that, she knows that and you know that you don't want to disappoint her. I promise we will let you know.. Everything is going to be okay. If you need someone to talk to about this, the Sickbay staff and counsellors are willing to lend a friendly ear."
Wilhem nodded, "Okay. I just might take you up on that."
Autumn rolled over and looked out at the door, she watched Kira and Wil talk for a moment and then she turned her head away. She didn’t want to talk to anyone. Her body hurt and her mind was still filled with images that she had seen while out of it. There was no way she was telling anyone about them.
Wilhem looked back at Autumn, "She's not going to want to talk about the dreams and visions she has had. But I saw them, too. So I know what she has seen. And what scares her about them. I don't know what to do about that. I wish I could help her. But I fear she will shrug off the assistance I wish to give her."
"Better Late Than Never."
By Lt. Commander Kent Peterson
Chief Science Officer
Kent rushed in to the Conference Room just as the Captain was finishing saying something in response to a remark by one of the other senior officers. He was surprised not to see either Commander Thomas or Lieutenant Commander Elaithin - at least he was not the only one who was late. He gained a glance or two from the other officers gathered around the large conference table.
The otherwise calm Australian commanding officer looked up at the chief scientist. He seemed a little disturbed at the younger man's tardiness, adding, "I hope you've got a good reason for being late Mister Peterson."
If the tone did not say it all, then Price addressing Kent as 'Mister Peterson' at that moment would have. And it was understandable too. His mighty starship was currently being preyed upon by specimens of what, from all accounts, appeared to be 'real' vampires. While the term 'vampire' may be straight from fiction, their presence on the Galaxy-class starship was fact.
"I do, sir," Kent began, moving quickly to take a seat near the Gorn officer seated where he would usually sit during senior staff meetings. "I'd wager that you've heard about Three of Four."
"Commander Thomas informed me of it after he spoke with you."
Kent was about to lean back in the conference room chair until he realized that this was no time relax. Despite the situation with the Sanguinarians he was not out of the woods yet with Captain Price. "We've been reviewing the internal sensor logs from around the time prior to finding her in the cargo bay unconscious. It appears she was not alone."
Lee leaned forward a little. "Go on."
"We cannot detect any specific lifesigns, but her movement and reactions seem to indicate that someone was in the room with her. With a little fudging we were able to detect a slight variation in the air density around the drone. From all accounts she was obviously interacting with someone. I'll give you two guesses."
"I only need one 'mate," Price said with his typical mid-eastern Australian accent. "Our Sanguinarian friends."
"That doesn't surprise me," Seth hissed.
Dothan nodded. "That still doesn't explain how they were able to shut her down though. We haven't been able to rouse her from the coma yet."
"So much for Borg technology," Kent said sarcastically. "But it might explain some of the odd things going on with some of my officers. It seems that nearly everyone I've assigned to the research we conducted after receiving the Tamarian recording has begun to get involved in a few odd occurrences."
The Captain leaned back a little, apparently having accepted Peterson's reason for being late, something which only added to the overwhelming evidence that the Sanguinarians, as Seth had suggested, were more of a threat to the Federation starship. "Like what?"
"Well I was hoping that 'Commander Elaithin would be able to fill in one gap, but the intrusion in to my quarters for one thing, a few officers seem to be experiencing memory loss," he responded, voicing the niggling concerns that had been mounting over the last day or two. "And then there's Lieutenant MacAllen's odd behavior."
"That's already been discussed," the medical chief said, filling the science chief on what he had missed. "I'd like to have her examined. I'm kind of surprised you didn't notice anything earlier."
"Well not so much her behavior, but she practically left in the middle of an assignment. Rose is not the most confident person, but she's never done anything like that before. And she seemed be disturbed ..." he added, stopping when it looked as though everyone had already heard it before.
"The question of the Sanguinarians being responsible for the attacks on crewmembers is not disputed 'mate. Just before you arrived we were discussing a means of capturing them."
"Captain, if I may?" Savat requested.
Lee extended his hand, inviting the Vulcan operations manager to fill Kent in on what they had discussed, yet another point he missed out on, before he had eventually turned up at the Conference Room.
"At present we are proposing that we configure the transporter for a wide area field, with a broad enough spectrum, we might be able to capture the Sanguinarians in a beam without the need for establishing a pattern lock."
Kent shook his head slightly. He understood what the Vulcan lieutenant commander was saying, but he was not sure if this was a moment when he was expected to respond.
"What about that 'slight variation' in air density?" Gustavson suggested.
'Commander Peterson leaned back in the chair and shook his head more obviously this time. "That won't work. At least no in real-time. We played around for three hours just trying to find some indication, and what we came up with probably wouldn't even stand up in front of the Judge Advocate General's Office," Kent explained, before looking to Price, adding, "At least in my honest opinion. Still, if we need a lure, and they are indeed attracted to blood, then why not synthesize large quantities of blood?"
Dothan nodded. "It would take a few hours, but it is possible. Human blood that is. Now Vulcan or Bolian might be a problem."
"But still," Kent said, throwing doubt on his own suggestion, "there is no way to tell whether or not synthetic blood would work. Still, these 'animals'," he remarked, ignoring the supernatural connotation of the Sanguinarians and assigning a more biological classification, "might be fooled. It would be better than using actual people."
He got a few glances from around the table.
"I assumed that was going to be how you lured them there," Kent added, not sure if he had said something wrong.
Lee nodded. "I'll take that under advisement 'Commander ..."
The doors to the Conference Room open again, catching the attention of Captain Price and the other Starfleet officers gathered around the Conference Room table. Which of the other missing senior staff would it be this time?
“Ramifications of the attack"
By Dr Autumn Jamieson, ACMO, Recent vampire bite and bashing victim, Lt Riana Parstran, Security officer (NPC) Dr Martin (EMH2)
The day after the attack Autumn sat in her med bay room, awake and feeling like she just could die. She was dressed in clothes that Riana had brought her. The faded blue jeans and the white tee-shirt were too big for her but she would survive. It was obvious that she had lost weight since Riana had last known her… Ria’s clothes use to fit her no problem. She was lost in her contemplation of her joggers and the tread on the bottom of them when footsteps alerted her. She looked up as a familiar face walked into her room. “Hey Dr M.” she said softly.
Dr Martin smiled at the young woman. “Hello Autumn. How are we feeling?” “Like shit!” Autumn said and winced under the stern gaze. “Ok I feel terrible.. like what you have done with your hair though Dr M. Like the long style huh?” Martin shook her head. “I needed a change of appearance .. long hair seemed right. And as for you feeling terrible … its not that surprising after all you went through. But we are releasing you.. you are going to go home and rest for two days. Doctors orders” Autumn stood up. “Ok doctor” she smiled. “Anything else?” “Yes.. Wilhem said to call him.” Autumn looked away at that. “I’ll do that” she muttered.
“You had better.. the poor man was in here worried sick about you.. if it wasn’t for him you might have never been found.” Dr Martin said sternly at the ACMO.
“Yeah I hear you Dr M.”
Dr Martin handed her a couple of Hypo sprays. “Medication. You know how to administer it and you had better take it.”
“Gotcha Doc.” She said as she pocketed the meds and moved towards the door.
“Oh and Autumn?”
Autumn turned and looked back at Dr Martin. “Yes?” “When I say rest.. I mean it.. I don’t want to see you here until the two days from now are up.. ok?” Autumn nodded. “Yeah ok.. it will give me a chance to write up that paperwork I keep missing…” she broke off at the EHM’s head shake.
“No work at all.. relax.. or I tell the counselling department to talk to you.” “I gotcha… that it?”
“Yes.” Dr Martin smiled as Autumn walked out of the medical bay and headed towards the turbolift. Autumn entered the turbolift and said . “Deck 3”
The lift began to move upwards. She sighed with relief as the lift’s doors opened on deck three. She exited the lift and walked to her quarters. She entered them and when the door sealed behind her she let her emotions take over. She made it as far as her bedroom and she collapsed onto the bed in tears. She stood only to get undressed and climb under the covers. She cried herself to sleep. But it wasn’t a calm and natural sleep. She woke many times screaming and afraid to go back to sleep because of her dreams.
After a disrupted sleep she woke sleepy eyed and still sore. She ignored the painkillers that Dr Martin had given her. She had placed them on her bedside table the night before and that’s where they stayed. She headed for her shower. Standing under the water she shut her eyes and concentrated on herself. Stepping out of the steam filled bathroom almost half an hour later Autumn walked across to her wardrobe. She opened it and drew out her long black silk robe. She pulled it over her body slowly and then sat down on her bed and combed out her long, damp black hair.
Her eyes were drawn back to a short black slinky dress, that would leave little to the imagination, hanging in her wardrobe. She was going to surprise Wil the other night by wearing that and see what his reaction would be. Thanks to that vampire those plans were fucked.
She didn’t want to see anyone and she wasn’t going to call Wil or
anyone else. She knew that he would have been notified when she had been released and that he was waiting to talk to her. She glanced guiltily at the com and sighed. ~I can’t .. I don’t want him to hurt any more… I can’t tell him about those dreams.. he has been through enough~ she walked out into her main room and headed for the replicator.
She was just finishing eating when the door chime rang. Filled with trepidation she asked the computer. “Computer who is outside my door?” Computer: Lieutenant Riana Parstran.
~oh ok~ “Come!” she called. The door opened and Ria stepped in dressed in jeans and a tee-shirt.
“Oh boy they were right…”
“Who was and about what?” Autumn asked as she turned her attention back to her book that she had been reading while eating.
“Oh the gossipers on this ship.. they were right when they said you looked like your best friend had died. And seeing that I am still alive and that I saw that cute fiancé of yours earlier I am wondering why you are so glum.. other then the obvious fact that you just got out of a medical bay.” “Ria.. take a hint that I really don’t want company at the moment.” “Never was one to take that hint.. and you know that Kender.” “Yeah you don’t say.. hell even my fiancé gets the point.” She muttered
“Ah yes .. but you aren’t really being very friendly are you?” “Why are you here Ria?”
“Cause Sailor Mars.. Sailor V to the rescue that’s why.. you are acting as if they have won.” ~Sailor Mars. Oh great she remembered that prank.. its been years since she called me that name.~ “Well sailor V… go elsewhere and rescue someone else before I burn you to a cinder.” Ria just grinned. “Come on Pyro.” She grabbed Autumn by the arm and dragged her towards her bed room where she sat her down on the bed and moved to the wardrobe. She tossed a pair of black jeans onto the bed followed by a long sleaved turtle neck shirt. She then moved to the chest of drawers and opened them and pulled out a set of underwear.
“Gee Ria make yourself at home.” Autumn said sarcastically.
“You get dressed.” Ria replied. “You have five minuets and if you aren’t dressed I call Seth and let him dress you.” Ria walked out of the bedroom and heard her friends disgruntled swearing and called in.. “Does Wilhem know that your mouth is that foul?” “Get Fucked Ria!” came her reply. “I am only doing this to get you off my case.. after this I am going back to being alone got it?” Ria laughed “From what I hear you have been fucked more times this past two weeks then I have ever been.” “Then someone is counting wrong.” Snarled Autumn as she exited the bedroom.“Cause you had more sex in the first year at the Academy then any woman there ever had in their entire lives.” “Oh touchy”
Autumn scowled at her friend. “There happy?” “Yes come on” Ria grabbed her arm and dragged her out of the door.
"Going To Work, Is Not Like It Used To Be." by Commander Thomas - First Officer
by Lt. Commander Peterson - Chief Science Officer USS Galaxy
Commander Thomas left his quarters behind and was now en route to the Bridge. He was scheduled to be there in twenty minutes and he didn't want to be late, although, keeping on track, he would arrive there early. Of course, as First Officer, everything in his life was subject to change. The only thing remained consistent was his dedication to Starfleet.
The internal communications system beeped as Chris walked down the corridor to the turboshaft. ["Peterson to Thomas."] it hailed, the voice of the chief scientist coming through loud and clear.
Chris stepped through the doors, which promptly closed behind him. "Bridge," the Starfleet commander said, before reaching across his chest and tapping the communicator badge he was wearing. "Thomas here. Go ahead 'Commander."
["Sir, if you have a moment I would like your assistance here in my office. I have a matter you should look at before I go to the Captain."]
Commander Thomas looked a little wary. Peterson was not the kind of man to ask for help - especially from someone that he did not like. Thinking carefully he finally responded. "Alright I will be there in a few minutes." he acknowledged.
["Excellent. I will be expecting you,] Kent responded. ["Peterson out."]
Chris seemed a little cautious now. The Sanguinarians had been slipping past security and seemed to possess 'powers' that defied logic. How else would they have been able to operate without detection, coming and going from the quarters of the crew like that? Considering Peterson's request for help, it made him wonder if it really was Lieutenant Commander Kent Peterson or possibly this was a trick from Vlad and his cronies. Either way, he had to go there - to find out this new evidence or uncover a plot.
"Guess I won't make it to the Bridge as planned," he muttered to himself. "Commander Thomas to the Bridge, I am on my way to meet with Lt. Commander Peterson. If you need me, that's where I'll be."
["Understood."] a duty officer from the Bridge responded.
Commander Thomas arrived to find the Starfleet lieutenant commander reading something. Kent looked up a moment or two later. "You asked to see me 'commander?" Chris remarked, waiting for a sign of treachery or an answer to the exact nature of why Kent had summoned him there.
Peterson stood up and straightened the jacket of his duty uniform. "We have a problem."
"So what's up?" Chris asked, moving to one side of the desk that the chief scientist was standing behind.
Kent looked down and picked up the PADD he was reading. He handed it over to the executive officer, adding, "Three of Four did not suffer a malfunction of her cybernetic implants or a biological problem."
"It was my understanding that Borg drones do not suffer from biological ailments."
"They do, though it is extremely rare. A drone is exposed to normal pathogens like any humanoid, but the nanoprobes usually fight it vigorously before it becomes a threat. Still, it was something we needed to look in to."
"So there was some other cause."
Chris relaxed a little. If it was a Sanguinarian trick then he would have expected them to make a move by now. Still, he was not entirely prepared to throw caution to the wind. Peterson and he were not exactly friends. "I assume you have an idea of what happened."
"It looks like the Sanguinarians, or at least one of their party was involved."
"I was under the impression that the sensors couldn't lock on to them. That was the whole reason why they were transported by shuttlecraft, because the transporter targeting scanners could not get a lock."
"True, but we detected all signs that Three of Four was talking with someone. Things like her body language and changes in air density ... things that are consistent of someone else being in the room."
"Could she have been suffering from some delusional state?"
"Possible, but unlikely. The internal logs also indicate that the doors to the cargo bay opened, but there was no one that entered. Who else do you know that cannot be detected by sensors, targeting or otherwise. None of our crewmembers has that ability."
"And other then malfunctioning doors, nothing that comes to mind." Chris said. "Which then poses a security threat to everyone."
"Agreed. But we know the Sanguinarians are a problem," Peterson said, "but at least from my end, we are finding out more about what they've been up to while we weren't looking.
"First things first, then." Commander Thomas said heading for an ordinary panel, placing his thumb in the right place it opened to reveal, four type 2 phasers inside, along with a tricorder. Removing two of the phasers and the tricorder he rejoined the 'Commander.
Peterson looked a little incredulously towards the First Officer. He was not aware that a panel like that had been installed, other than the phaser kept towards the back of his desk drawer. It did not surprise him though, since Chris was a former intelligence officer, and no doubt suspicious as all hell. "When were you going to say something about that?!" the chief scientist protested.
"Installed as a result of our new ambassador her, only a few people know about it and that's for security measures." Commander Thomas said handing the chief his weapon and a tricorder.
"That is where we are likely to get in to trouble, hence why I initially wanted to speak with you before approaching the Captain," Kent added, holstering both the type-II phaser and the tricorder. "With their 'ambassador' down. Don't you think the Collective is likely to start wondering why a drone they assigned to the starship of a people that despise the Borg is not responding?"
"Good point. I have to wonder if the Captain has thought of that. It would certainly add to our problems if we have to wonder about a Borg cube appearing out of transwarp, demanding to know why Three of Four is not responding."
"Assuming they even bother to ask," Kent said. He knew the Borg. It was quite possible they would not even worry about it and take her non-responsiveness as an act of war.
The two men exchanged glances.
"Is there someway we can adept the tricorder to scan for the Sanguinarians in someway?"
The lieutenant commander shook his head. "Not in real-time. The air density changes were found would not be sufficient to track anything. Not even a fly. They are simply the closest thing we could find to someone else being there."
"Understood. I need to check on something before I head to the Bridge."
"Well, I'm going to report to the Conference Room. I just thought this was enough of a reason to be late to the senior staff meeting."
"Love and The One Time I'm Late"
by Commander Thomas - First Officer
Commander Thomas was among the last of the officers to arrive at the captain's emergency meeting for the senior staff, not a very good idea. In this case however he was hopefully that his own encounter with Lady Lilth, would prove to be of interest. Well he'd now seen her twice, the first time was on the ship and her desire to draw his interest.
This second time, he'd only see her from a distance, but he'd observed a very interesting trait about her movement and had a couple of ideas. Which might just work to their advantage. Plus the other interesting thing was the fact that the Borg Ambassador wasn't able to stop them this time.
Commander Thomas entered the meeting, knowing full well the eyes would be upon him for being late. He however could explain that first he'd gone to engineering and then Commander Peterson had contacted him. Finally he'd tracked Lady Lilth for a short distance, before determining that he needed to get to the meeting for the moment.
"Sorry I am late captain." Chris said coming into the room, turned around and tapped a few keys on the door. Then opened a panel and removed something form the inside.
"I am surprised you didn't turn off the verbal communications in this room." Chris said. "If they can write a sophisticated program to take control of the ships engines, they might be able to do more then that."
Taking his seat, he didn't bother to stop talking. "Now, I can assume this meeting is about the Sangrianians." Chris quickly noted. "I was able to track Lady Lilth for a short distance unnoticed, but I broke off my activities as I realized I was already late enough for this meeting."
Pausing he took note the surprised looks from everyone in the room. He could tell they didn't believe him, or that they found it hard to believe he'd managed to achieve this success.
"I learned something about the way they move, they make no noise and they can sense their pray. However I suspected they do so through heightened senses, of smell most likely. Meaning if you adjust the way the environmental systems work just enough you can be down wind of them." Chris noted.
With a look from the officers like, yeah right.
"Well that or it was a fluke and I just got lucky in being able to follow her for a short distance." Commander Thomas said.
Waiting for a moment he moved on, "I do have a suggestion that would work, if we could lure them into one of the ship's holodecks we should be able to isolate them there. In fact we might even be able to study them through the use of a holodeck, by using holodeck figures to work as sensors. If you turn the safeties off, then they would be just like the real thing and while I am sure they'd figure it out soon enough. We might learn just enough information to make it of value." Chris said.
Taking another moment to pause, he decided to say one more thing. "I was thinking about the issue of the transporters when we first encountered them and their fear of them. Perhaps they fear them, not because of how they work, but because of they out slightly out of phase with our own presence." Chris said. "If they were out of phase by even a small amount, the transporters could just tear their bodies apart and it would explain why our sensors can't find them."
With that Commander Thomas took a break to catch his breath and let everyone else in the staff meeting speak.
By Lieutenant jg Brian Elessidil
Location: Lt. Elessidil's quarters, about the same time as the captain's emergency sr. staff meeting
"A glass of tawny port, please," Brian sighed to the replicator. He had just returned to his quarters after a very long shift in sickbay. As a junior counselor, Brian knew he would be required to help out in sickbay during emergencies, but this was taxing his energies to their limit.
He crossed the room and dropped into his favorite chair, intending to unwind and release the stresses of the day from his tired mind and body. Normally, he would have preferred to spend some time with other members of the crew but today he had stayed well beyond the end of Delta shift to help with all the problems in sickbay; now he only wanted to get away and relax. Even under normal circumstances, sickbay duty was not his favorite task and it took a lot out of him. However, the events onboard of late were certainly not normal, and that, coupled with the unique stress of being a Betazoid still acclimating to being on a ship with so many other people and their attendant thoughts, made it all the more draining.
In spite of the solitude, the comfortable chair and the port, relaxation remained elusive. "This isn't working," the exhausted counselor muttered to himself. "Computer, play J.S. Bach, Suite for Lute, BMV 995 and dim the lights to ten percent." As he took a sip of the replicated port -- it wasn't the same as the "good stuff" he had on hand, but it was easier than getting out the bottle and pouring it himself -- he tried to let the music fill his ears and calm his mind . . . .
A glass of port and six movements of Bach later, he still wasn't as relaxed as he hoped or needed to be. Something was bothering him, something more than simply the chaos and fatigue of his shift in sickbay. Something odd was going on all around the ship and he couldn't help but sense it. He had heard scattered talk about the Sanguinarians, ancient myths and whatnot but had been so busy establishing a routine aboard his new assignment that he really hadn't given it much attention. None of the crew or civilians he met with for individual counseling said much about it all. In fact, he hadn't even seen one of these Sanguinarians himself; they seemed almost fictional.
At one point, he even wondered to himself whether it was just some odd tradition onboard the Galaxy to weave an atmosphere of gothic suspense around the Terran holiday of Halloween, but his experience seeing dazed, crazed, mutilated, and blood-drained crew members in sickbay quickly dismissed the idea.
"This is too creepy," he thought to himself. "Perhaps the best way to deal with this is to face it head-on. Instead of trying to escape it I should just immerse myself in it." This he directed out loud to his cat, Choo-choo, who had just stoically presented himself from somewhere in the room. Following the dictates of this new line of reasoning, Brian went to one of his many bookshelves and pulled down a copy of Bram Stoker's "Dracula", an old, late-19th century Earth story that he had read at least twice since he was a teenager. As he read through the opening chapters outlining Jonathan Harker's growing suspicions in Dracula's castle, Brian couldn't help but notice a vague similarity to his own sense about what was currently occurring on the Galaxy.
As he sank deeper into the depictions of the main character's increasing unease and dread, Brian was startled by the sense of a tangible, eerie presence. At the same time that he decided he had better to abandon his new coping strategy and put the book down, he saw the fur on Choo-choo's back stand on end as the 21-pound cat hissed and ran from the room. "What the ....?"
"Oh you really must try to relax, tired vun."
Brian leapt from his chair and whipped around to find the source of the thickly-accented voice that came from behind him. Leaning on the back of the couch next to his chair, was a pale, dark-haired woman in a revealing black dress.
"Security, intruder alert!" Brian yelled as he vainly smacked his com badge.
"Now ve vouldn't vant to be disturbed, vould ve darling?" she whispered, approaching hypnotically and barraging Brian's mind with seductive thought. Although he was almost overwhelmed by the surprise of her appearance and the intensity of her mind, and although he had to admit she was spectacularly beautiful, the seduction was lost on him. She seemed to realize this almost at the same time he did and stopped her approach for a just a moment.
"Oh. . . ." she purred knowingly, and before Brian's eyes, shimmeringly transformed into the most gorgeous young man he had ever seen. The torrent of seductive thought continued unabated as the now tuxedo-clad intruder resumed her -- his -- approach, and in the most melodious male voice Brian had ever heard, asked, "Better?"
With a terrible mix of excitement and horror, Brian realized that this must be one of the Sanguinarians, instantly confirming that everything he had recently heard, seen and felt was all too real. He wanted to confront the feelings by immersing himself in them and now he was getting exactly that. Continuing to move slowly backwards away from the advancing creature, Brian summoned all his considerable mental power in an attempt to fight the thoughts that were being forced into his empathic mind. He knew he was losing the battle. "Who are you?" he he managed to whisper hoarsely.
Smiling slightly, the Sanguinarian asked, "How can you relax ven you struggle against that vich can give you the most exqvisite pleasure?" The predator was now within arm's length of his prey; reaching out one of his strong, masculine hands, he gently touched Brian's face, freezing the now helpless victim in his tracks. He gently moved closer to his prize, meeting his lips with a kiss that almost stopped Brian's heart. From there, he moved his kisses down the side of Brian's neck . . . .
Immersed in terrible bliss, the last thing Brian remembered thinking was, "Why me?"
OOC: The song quoted throughout is "superheroes" - the final song from the Rocky Horror Show - somehow appropriate ;)
By PO Tyrola Lomax
==*I've done a lot, God Knows I've tri-ied.* ==
Tyrola walked into her quarters and immediately slumped against the wall as the doors closed behind her. As her back slid further down the wall and she found herself on the floor, her tear ducts swamped her face with tears - not able to hold them back any longer. She looked around the empty room, could she see someone over there in the far corner? Was it him? How could he have gotten in??
She quickly pushed herself back up to her feet, making heavy use of the wall and stood with her back hard against it. She relaxed only a little when she realised she was looking at one of Joe's plants near the viewport.
"Computer, lights!" Tyrola demanded as she slowly made her way across the room.
*To find the truth, I've even lied.*
Ty collapsed onto the sofa and sighed heavily. How could she ever trust James, or any other man, again? What would she do now? She couldn't just avoid him all the time, the fact remained she still had feelign for him somewhere inside. How could she avoid him when she wanted him so much?
*But all I know, is down inside, I'm bleeeeeding*
Ty began to sob heavily again. Why couldn't everything just be alright again? Her judgement had been so far off, her trust so misplaced. Her mind must be seriously impaired to be so worng about someone. Something deep inside had burst and all the force of it brought Tyrola to a sitting position, tears streaming down her cheek and a scream of sheer anguish and madness coming from deep down in her throat.
*And superheroes, come to feast...*
Lord Vlad slowly came into the far side of the room from Tyrola. He had been lurking in the shadows of her sleeping quarters, but it seemed the woman would not be moving for quite some time to come. Among the plants of Joseph Reynolds, he wouldn't be spotted by her unless she came looking for him. His view of her however was perfect.
*To taste the flesh, not yet deceased*
As he watched Tyrola stand and move to the viewport, seemingly calmed by the ear-piercing scream she had emitted only moments before, he began to move smoothly between the plants. The anticipation of her flesh brough the fresh taste of blood to his mind. He exitted the collection of plants swiftly and silently.
Had he chosen a route only a metre to his left he would have encountered Joe's small garlic-clove plants, and perhaps would have alerted Ty to his presence and retreated. However, luck was with him on this day.
Ty's mind was far off, consumed in pain and thought that one should not need ot bare. She neither heard nor saw the man approach. She had a clear view of the room in relection in the viewport - but Lord Vlad cast no such reflection. She closed her eyes, sighing, and it was when her head touched the viewport that she first felt the coldness in the room. Before she had time to turn around she felt a searing warmth and pain in her neck.
Lord Vlad knew instantly that something wasn't the way he expected. Although able to seduce most of his prey, this one seemed so consumed in prey that the ideas of pleasure were not prominent in her mind. As the blood flowed through her body, pulsing at every point then out through her neck into Lord Vlad, she felt the reality of pain.
*And all I know, is still the beast is feeeeeding...*
Lomax gasped, but the sudden lack of blood to her head and as it happened, in general around her system, meant nothing more could be vocalised. It was with confusion and fear that she became faint and less aware of the surroundings and her situation. As she began to slump more hevily against the viewport she caught sight of something, near...no ON her neck. At that point she could barely remember her name, and the only thought in her mind as she eventually fell unconscious was that a male had done it again, used her and left her drained and hurt. He had quite literally fed off her.
*And crawling, on the planet's face, a group of insects, called the human race...*
As Vlads teeth slid from the neck of Lomax he realised she was indeed one of the more fragile races he had tasted in his time - the Trill. The duality of their nature left them easy to penetrate, but also made their knowledge base greater. This woman may have more of an idea what was going on than the typical woman of her apparent age. Not that it mattered, they would never capture him.
*Lost in time, and lost in space...*
Lomax had always been a fighter, and even as Vlad left the room she was fighting for consciousness. Tyrola was becoming aware of her surroundings again, but her mind kept blackening and disorientating her. Where was she? How had she got her? Why was she so weak?
Tyrola caught glimpse of a figure leaving her quarters. She knew not who he was, but Lomax spurred one though to her conscious mind. His time and purpose was nearly up. He would not be at large for long.
"What am I, Invisible?"
by Lt. Commander Elaithin Jii, Chief of Security
Quietly, the Bajoran Chief of Security sat through the breifing. To say he was rattled would not thouroughly describe the sensation. The existence of Valta Wraiths - the Sanguinarians, he mentally corrected - had rattled the religous man to his core. In his people's history - or mythology, depending on one's point of view - they were nearly as great an evil as the pah wraiths.
So how is it the Prophets allow them to exist?
It was a difficult thing, to know one's own Gods. For millinea, the Bajoran faith had been no different than any other.
But then Ben Sisko came to Deep Space Nine, and the Prophets were proven as real, as alien, non-corporeal beings that inhabited the Celestial Tem..the Wormhole.
The Starfleet Officer in Elaithin understood that the Prophets were an advanced species. But the Bajoran in him, his faith, WHO HE WAS.... all decried that as false. That they were the parents, protectors, and guardians of Bajor.
But if the Prophets were all-powerful, then why did injustice exist? Why did the pah-wraiths, the vlata wraiths, the BORG.... why were they there?
It is a commonly held truism that without evil there can be no good. That neither can exist in a vacuum.
But that's what space is, after all, a vacuum.
So how can good, or evil, exist?
That was a question Elaithin Jii did not have the answer to. He'd had his doubts lately - doubts about himself, doubts about whether he could live up to the Chiefs of Security who'd trained hom aboard this ship. Sunder, Albrecht, and Savat set hard acts to follow. He'd had his doubts about Starfleet, after the Borg mission which had cost him his hand - where all this self-doubt had begun.
But he had never, ever doubted, for an instance, his faith in the Prophets before.
But he did now. The Sanguinarians had shaken his beleifs to thier core, something Madame Kiye, with her mind-influincing 'Stone of Tears' had not even been able to do.
Abruptly, Jii was startled out of his thoughts by the Entrance of Commander Peterson. The man walked in, and the Bajoran's eyes narrowed, his artificial left hand clenching.
His reaction was not unnoticed by Karyn Dallas.
Personal Log Entry No.7
Junior Officer's Quarters, USS GALAXY
Lt.j.g.(for the moment) Lysander VanderPuls-Hawksley, Tactical Officer (again, for the moment)
"Umm...what's the stardate again? I dunno...it's been about two days since the last entry...whatever that means on a starship going Warp...whatever towards he Galactic Barrier. I guess it doesn't really matter...I mean...seven entries in what? Four or five years? Who is ever going to sort through all this drivel? I mean...smeg it...they always told us at the Academy that our personal logs could be a learning tool not just for ourselves, but others. Though I just realized that you'd have to be dead for anyone else to want to go looking at yours...huh... there's a cheery lil thought... "Let's see, Cadets, how Mr VanderPuls-Hawksley screwed up and died a bajillion lightyears from home, so you don't do the same."
I guess I'd better do this formal..since it looks pretty bad on the ship right now. Ummm... I guess I'd better identify myself...Lysander Villem Hercule Van Der Puls-Hawksley, Lieutenant Junior Grade, Serial No- Ess Eff See null five five null one three five nine eight six two null. I guess anyone hearing this knows what happened to us...and I guess you'll know better than I do if anyone of us made it alive aboard Galaxy, or if you're listening to this millennia after...weird...
I guess this is my last will and testament. Wow...never thought I'd ever have to say that...but ..smeg it...I'm twenty four years old...and this looks bad. Whoever is seeing this knows all about how the Sagui ... Sangrilas ... Sandinistas..smegging vampires running around the Galaxy got loose and all that smeg. I mean...I didn't believe it myself at first, but a lot of the crew have been bitten and they swear this stuff is real...I went for my mandatory PT this morning, to find that 'Iron Balls' Sanchez, the Security drone in charge of PT is in sickbay...I'd have sworn that woman could take a disruptor blast and not only keep smiling but dismember the shooter with one hand amputated...I dunno...no one's tried to suck my blood out of my neck...well.. except Jessie Parry...but she's like that all the time..totally humourless...I guess everyone knows how I've been on Delta shift since I got here...and when I'm not doing that, I'm running around the phaser banks doing diagnostics that most people run from the Fire Control LCARS but *I* have to do by hand.. and THEN that wench forced the Ell Tee to take me off the Emergency helm Relief list...like Rebecca even knew what that was or who was on it! Snarkin memo happy wench...she's making a play for Chief Tac...mark my words.
You know...I've never admitted this...but hell..since it's looking pretty gloomy...I've never been able to look at Rebecca Von Ernst without thinking 'There but for the grace of God go I...' to myself. I mean... she's better at the theoretical side of tactical Mathematics than I ever would be...but I'm just as good on an instinctive level... and... there's NO ONE in this Quadrant who wouldn't admit that I can out-fly her in anything...smeg...I barely remember her from the Academy...quiet...puking half the time...I remember Master Gunnery Sargent K'tong making her do those zero-gee boarding drills with puke inside her helmet! She was floating there, outside the shuttle and coldn't even see where to grab...I thought she was gonna float herself right out of Lunar orbit... Cadet Cloaking Device for sure... But for some reason, she was passed over for the Oxford Advanced Math course and I got the scholarship... though I got kicked out before getting my PhD...but that's a Master's that she doesn't have...but now...it's like watching some android in action...she goes into this weird trance ...mumbling and staring all over the place...doing equations on the LCARS that I've never seen before...statistical matrixes and probability flowcharts...and the second the drill is over, she's back to stuttering and crying and puking...but when she's working....weird...totally fixiated... she even beat me on the Academy's KILLARNEY simulation... somehow she got the Killarney out of the Ambush and aced ALL the Breen ships...even I lost half my crew on that sim...and my 80% kill ratio was the Academy record...right until she took it and got a 100% without taking so much as a scratch...and she didn't even KNOW how well she'd done...weird woman. Looks like she's about twelve...acts like she's about eight... fights like she's an Greek Fury of six thousand years...if she wasn't so weird...she's kind of cute... and I remember her talking about Four Dimensional Vector Curves that time..almost like a real person...I wonder if she knows how pretty she ....naaah...what the hell? *WHY* the smegging novas am I thinking of her like she's a real woman? Maybe I really am growing up....
I always wonder...if I'd taken my career more seriously... would I have ended up like that? I mean...sheesh... it's like she's...Borg or something...I would kill myself if I ever was...no.. I guess I wouldn't...I wonder what made her like that? Probally that mysterious Admiral Hoth...I wonder who he is...the last time I tried looking him up in the Database, I got those two spooks from Fed-Intell on my doorstep... and a reprimand from Commodore T'prel at Gor Vosh Station...
Anyways...if you're listening to all this garbage...I guess you won't really care since Rebecca, and I and everyone else will probally be long dead.
SO....Uncle Pietier...it looks like you were right about your only and least favourite nephew...I did come to a bad end. I guess I should have stayed on Earth or Alpha Centauri and gone into the family business with you...but after MA and DA died...I dunno... I guess I wanted to feel needed..and everyone knows the Fleet needs people who can fly or fight...or both.... espicially after the Dominion War losses So everything I had been left...that you were holding in trust for me...goes back to you I guess. We're the only Van der Puls' left in the galaxy and even though I guess we don't like each other very much...well... you know. So the company's yours...just like Da intended... Hell... I haven't been able to touch a deci-cred of that trust since you froze me out anyways...so it's not really a loss...seventeen million credits though...oh well..
All my fencing trophies and stuff....I'd like to leave to my friend Ensign Miette Michelle Remmington...'Remy'...though since she's on the GALAXY with me...I guess that's kinda pointless...but on the off chance that she makes it out alive and I don't...well.. all that junk is hers. Along with my personal papers and stuff...though knowing Remy, she'll jettision it all...there's something I regret...I guess...never letting Remy know how I felt about her...she's always been a friend, and I hope she knows that I'd do anything for her...even though I have screwed up our friendship on more than one occasion...I can hear her now..."Yes Lysander...it IS all YOUR fault..." damn bossy woman... I never believed all that cod-swallop about her old man however... if Remmie's carting half his genetic code, then he must have been all right...and Jessie...she doesn't know this...but Kinkaid never would have looked twice at her without *ahem* yours truely giving him a nudge...or a kick in the seat...whatever... she's so transparent... she hates Rebecca and resents feeling like she has to hold her hand... am I the only person who looks at Von Ernst and gets the willies? I mean..sheesh.. everyone else looks at her and sees this goofy lil kid.. I look at her and see a bomb...yeah... a bomb all wrapped up in pretty tissue paper...
Umm.... I guess that wraps it up. The Captain is going to make an all-hands soon and I for one would like to hear what he has to say. Maybe I jumped the gun on this entry.. but what the smeg...I can always delete it.
Lysander stared at the memory wafer that held his personal journal backup. The small bio-gel pack lay there on his palm, colour coded a deep azure blue. He closed his fist over it and stared at the flat holo on the wall over his desk.
"StarFleet Academy Class of 2374" read the legend on the holo. Lysander himself was in the fifth row, with the taller cadets. Typical Starfleet, they'd misspelt his name ....emblazoned on the holo Lysander's head was "L.Voterpools- Hakws, Tactical School" But our Lysander had eyes only for a slight figure hidden in the third row, half obscured by a Tellurite Engineering student. "R.vonErnst, Tactical School" was emblazoned in tiny lettres over her head, the scrunched up face barely visible but letting you know that the formal holo was a fate worse than death to her.
"Postscript. To Lieutenant Rebecca Von Ernst, I leave one male Terran heart, slightly battered, to do with as she will." Lysander intoned to an empty room.
~whoah...THAT was odd, where did THAT come from?~ he wondered to himself. ~duh... you've been pashhing on her since she showed you up at the Academy, smegger.~ ~maybe... but you're right...maybe it's thinking that I'm gonna die here... but hell.. if I make it out of THIS mess...maybe I will ask her out.~ ~Yeah, do that, tough guy. And quit having imaginary conversations with yourself like this, or you're gonna end up in the Counsellers' Office...`
With a sigh, Lysander tossed the memory chip back into the clutter that marked his workstation, and stretched out on his bed. Sleep would come hard tonight.
"Clash of Wills" by Lt.j/g Lysander VanderPuls-Hawksley and Lt.j/g Jessie Parry Ensign. Bosco (NPC) and gratuitous and unapproved mentions of Ens.Miette
Michelle Remmington and Lt. Rebecca von Ernst
Lysander and Bosco were hunched over the gaming table in Ten Forward. While the holo table could duplicate the control panels of the mini-hover tanks, the control over the holocraft lacked the crisp snap of the real thing.
Currently, Bosco was taking Lysander apart, leading by five 'kills.' With a sweeping flanking movement, Bosco's holo forces overran another position of Lysander's. With a grin that would be described as 'smug' on almost any species, Bosco taunted his superior.
"That's six now...you'll owe me almost a full case of wine before we're done. Perhaps you'd like to concede defeat, and just order it now? Maybe send it down to the Battle Bridge before the end of DELTA shift?"
Lysander's laugh rang like a bell through the crowded room. Since BETA shift was just getting off, the room was about as packed as it would be for the 'day' shipboard. Clusters of people in and out of uniform crowded the room.
"Dream on. I think I can take you...if I can just get MORE speed on the turning radius of these things..."
"That's not the problem. I'm beating you because to you.. it's a game. You're taking too big risks, moving too fast and trying to..."
"yeah yeah yeah....you going to reset the game or bore me to death....smeg...heads up...Dragon Lady #2 on the portside"
Lysander's eyes had picked out the flame topped form of his superior, Lt. Jg. Jessie Parry coming through the crowd towards them. Bosco's ears picked up and he leaned close to his team-mate.
"Jessie's in here? I thought she'd be with....well.. never mind. She must be looking for you...or me... and I'm *far* too nice for her to be looking for me... so it must be YOU! Look, my friend. Have you been doing anything up on the Main Bridge you haven't supposed to be doing?"
Lysander made a show of examining his synth-ahol Scotch for a moment before answering. "Define 'anything?' for a moment. Do you mean anything like pestering Remy to let me take helm a moment? Or 'anything' like taking our illustrious leader's stool and shoving it down the reclamation chute where it so richly belongs? Or perhaps you meant taking off my clothes and running around the Bridge like.."
Bosco's smile was 'smug' again. "Remy. I *KNEW* it...trouble is they put the prettiest female near you...and she's not only drop-dead sweet, but she's running the FLIGHT OPS board...guaranteed to make one Lysander Van der Puls- Hawksley sit up and notice more than her nice smile...the chance to talk to a pretty girl who's got her hands on the helm is waaaayyyyy too much for you to pass up...isn't it my friend?"
"Remy's a sweetie...and almost as good a pilot AND fencer as you-know-who....but as I understand it, she's under orders NOT to let me anywhere near the helm. Too bad. Maybe I should ask her out sometime...but....naaawww..."
Lysadner's shrug was far too casual to be anything but deliberately so. With a smirk as maddening as Bosco's own, he directed his next comment over the Caitain's left shoulder, to the Lt.j/g who'd approached their table and stood unnoticed behind the ensign. "Besides Bosco, I only like redheads. Hiyas Jessica. You look all official and thundercloudish. Pull up a seat or chew me out from there?"
Jessie sighed and pulled up a seat and glanced at their drinks. Screwing up her nose at the use of her full name and that beverages on the table she began to speak.
"You know I was talking to an Ensign today.. she was telling me that someone wants to take helm while on shift.. of course I told her it couldn?t be one of my department.. but seeing that the Ensign and myself are old friends I was inclined to believe her when she told me the name of that said officer. Oh course I could report that said officer to Rebecca.? She paused and waved down a waiter and said . ?The normal please Mike.? He nodded and walked off and came back with a cappuccino. Taking her drink she turned and looked at Lysander with piercing green eyes. ?Care to explain why Remy was telling me this story and give me one good reason why I shouldn?t tell our chief or the Captain??
Lysander's blue-green eyes were the very model of innocent bewilderment. Bosco had already stood up and made an unintelligible excuse as he hurried off. Lysander brushed a lock of his unruly hair out of his eyes as he leaned towards Jessie.
"Well, see...I DID ask her if i could take the helm for a moment. and Ens. Remmington explained to me that not only was that not allowed by regs, but that my...smegging history had already caused Lt. Von Ernst to remove me from the list for alternate Helm Ops. So...technically...I never broke regs or standing orders, since I never laid one finger on the Helm LCARS. There's a second reason though. She knows...and YOU know...I'm a better pilot than anyone aboard this tub. I just wanted to see if a Galaxy-class handled any better for real than the simulators show. Besides...it's DELTA shift for smeggin crying out loud...mostly they just push the 'autopilot' button and go away..."
Jessie groaned. ?Yeah well maybe if you understood more about this ship.. YOU would know that doing that is not what they do. I have done delta shift and I know a number of flight Control officers on this ship.. and I know they don?t just do that!?
She sipped her drink and looked at him again. ?And as for you being the best pilot on this ship.. I think Remy would be a bit peeved to hear that? as would Heather.. and I don?t think med bay wants to be patching you up after they have torn you to shreds?. And it wasn?t Rebecca who removed you from that list.?
Lysander was rarely caught off guard. This was turning into one of those times. He swivelled his lean torso back, to rest both elbows on the table and look Jessie straight in her eyes.
"Well now, Jessica. Let me get this straight. Maybe it was wrong of me to ask Remy, maybe it wasn't. Either way, she was the straight up, Starfleet officer she's supposed to be and didn't let me lay one finger on the helm. I didn't know that the Lee-Tee had pulled me off the list. But check the sim scores, check the records, and YOU tell me who's the best pilot aboard this ship. Notwithstanding the opinion of the Lee-Tee, who's probably a BIT miffed that I remember her puking her lunch up during the zero-gee exercises at the Academy. The same as I remember a certain Cadet Remy watching in awe as *MY* Red Squadron team pulled off one of the best seasons ever in '74." Jessie's green eyes never faltered.
"Was that before or after they pulled you off the Red Squadron that year? It's so hard to keep track of all the times..."
Lysander's angry face melted into the roguish grin that it usually bore. One thing about Lysander, he didn't stay mad at anything or anyone for long.
"Before. It was my last flight, before I did the fly-by of the first year cadet picnic that the Auxiliary Guild was holding...you've never SEEN so many middies running for the hills...though a garbage lifter coming in at full throttle about six meters over your head *COULD* be a bit alarming..."
Jessie rolled her eyes. ?Well there?s one of the reasons I sent the memo to Rebecca to take you off that list. Look I don?t really give two hoots who is the best pilot on Galaxy.. its not my concern,.. my concern is this department?and your performance in this department.? She sighed. ?Look I don?t want to fight with you.?
"Umm.. so why ARE you doing exactly that, then? Because, and you can admit it...you KNOW I'm the best pilot. Come on....say it..."
Jessie scowled. ?I don?t have to say that.. cause I don?t I believe that. What is it with men these days? I mean most male tactical officers have this thing about being the best. AT ANYTHING.? She smirked. ?I am just sitting here telling you how it is?
Lysander's usually ready grin faltered a bit. As he continued, he started to get worked up. ~What's this woman's problem?~ he wondered.
"I'm not sure about that, Jessica. You've been busting me since I came aboard, for no real reason that I can see. Look, I know that my efficiency reports must be a drag on you, but I haven't had ANY problems since I came aboard, but I get stuck on DELTA shift? By you? And then you're telling the Lee-tee to take me off the emergency Helm list?. But for smegg's sake, look at facts. I've logged more flight hours than any TWO of the Helmsmen put together, hell...my last posting was as CHIEF Helmsman on an Akira-class Cruiser. My TAC scores are better than yours, better than Oswald?s, and I know.. I KNOW from the bottom of my heart that I can fly or fight circles around anyone aboard this ship. I don't think you're 'telling it like it is.' I think you have some sort of personal problem with me, either personal or against men in general. And the only person aboard this ship who is 'better' than me at war games and sim work is our lovely lil Lee-Tee "Cloaking Device", who has her head so far up her tiny lil backside that it's a wonder...never mind.. So...is there anything ELSE you want to say? Something that maybe falls into the realm of 'ships business' and not 'smegging personal crap?' Because I'd like to hear it."
Jessie?s eyes wavered a bit and she drew in a breath and looked him in the eyes. ?Well you know nothing about me now do you Lt.? You would a have a slight problem with egotistical men to if you had been beaten to a pulp by one.? She glowered at him and pushed a PADD across the table at him. ?Sanchez wants you to actually make the PT tomorrow? or else I believe was the threat. And quiet frankly I don?t care who you beat in tests.. here you have to impress me.. and believe me quoting numbers doesn?t do that.?
Lysander thumbed the ACCEPT button on the PADD and slid it back to Jessie angrily.
"I'll be at PT tomorrow, Lieutenant. You're right. I don't know anything about you, or your history. Not to be rude, but frankly it's not my problem. I suggest you go see the ships Counsellors to get over it, however. I didn't ever lay a finger on you, or anyone else, so don't tar me with the same brush as whoever hurt you before. And...just so you know Jessie...anytime you want to back your mouth up in the Simulators, I'm game. I've seen your training scores, the same as you can see mine. Numbers don't mean anything, but if you ever want to compete head to head, say the word. Oh...and for the record...I report to Ell-Tee von Ernst...assuming her head's out of her PADD long enough to notice. Not you. IF I made the case, I probably have more 'time in rank' than you do."
Lysander felt like shit. But he'd be smegging twice damned if he was going to let her keep riding his tail over something he had nothing to do with. Lysander was all for taking responsibility and punishment for the things he WAS directly responsible for, but this situation definitely didn't fall into that category. However, the look in those green eyes was ripping his emotions apart.
Jessie took the PADD. ?Yeah well I report to Becca as well and even though you might have had more time as a Lt. jg, I have been on this ship longer and have been doing this job since last mission, officially and un-officially and about the counsellors.. I am seeing them? she stood up and looked at him again. ?You are the new kid on this ship Lt. I just hope you can handle this ship. It is rough.. and a lot of us here may not look like much but all of us here.. including Rebecca have been through hell the past two missions.. Rebecca didn?t ask for her job but she is damn good at it. Just as I am good at mine. Each of us has paid our dues and if you would like to know something.. I watched you when you were at the academy? and then cadet Charming was legendary.. now I am not to sure.. bluff and bluster maybe??
The insolent grin never left Lysander's face or eyes.
"Was there anything else, Lieutenant? If not...I have to go find a replacement for my shift tomorrow...since it's apparently *SO* urgent I go run with you and Sanchez before Alpha shift tomorrow, that you scheduled the PT for the middle of *MY* Delta Shift."
Jessie looked at him and said. "I didn't schedual it at all..... Lockheart's idea.. his fault.. he gave the info to the former chief.. Rebecca hasn't done anything about it since she got into the chair... "she paused and sighed calmly. "Look Lt.. truce?" She held out her hand as she said the last line.
Lysander met and held her green eyes for a moment, before he took the proffered hand.
"Okay...truce. I'm most definatly *NOT* after your job, you know. I don't know why I'm so defensive around you, pretty faces have an...unsettling effect on me. Sorry."
Jessie looked away and then turned back. ?I shouldn?t be such a bitch? sorry. And you?ll only need that replacement for about the last hour or so of your shift.? She smiled. ?And one day I might take you up on that offer of taking you on.?
Lysander watched her trim backside as she left Ten Forward. His emotions were in a turmoil. He'd cheerfully kiss a Tirmankian Slimetoad to get transferred the smeg OUT of this TAC Department and back to Flight Ops...but it seemed that the 'powers that be' had decided to let Lysander shoot the guns for a while.Okay...whatever. He could handle that.
But these women...WHY did fate have to land him into a nest of red-headed women? Those were the worst kind...
~I hope she was talking about the simulators...~ was his last thought on the subject.
Jessie walked out and sighed as she entered the turbolift. 'Why me?' she thought 'Why do I always get the cocky ones on this ship? whay can't some other ship take them?' she said "Deck 11" and lift shot downwards.
"Brainstorm session - part III"
by Captain Robert Edward Lee Price
The Captain regarded Commander Thomas for a moment and considered what he had said. "The holodecks could prove to be useful if we could get our guests to enter. I think what you said about luring them there is quite correct." Lee glanced around the table. "If we are to use the transporters on them as we discussed, someone will need to not only find them, but draw them to the targeted area to trap them in the beam"
"Captain, those things are only interested in one thing. Blood." Doctor Dothan stated in a semi protestant tone. "The only way we are going to be able to lure them anywhere once they are found..."
"Is with live bait. Yes Doctor, you are correct." Commander Thomas cut him off.
The Captain watched the exchange and then nodded. "As unpleasant as it may be to be thought of as nothing more then food, that is how the Sanguinarians view us 'mate. When they get hungry enough, using that need and desire against them would appear to be our only advantage at the moment."
Andree let out a sigh of agreement. He knew that the Commander was right, but still, he didn't like the idea of putting more lives on the line just to get the guests to go where they wanted them. "I suppose you are right."
Glancing over, the Captain asked, "So how about it Miss T'Zaq? Can we lure the guests to the holodeck and then target that area with the transporters?"
The Vulcan assistant Chief Engineer shook her head. "I do not believe that would be wise Captain. The holomatrix would interfere with the transportation beam. The only way we would be able to transport anyone out of there would be if we powered off the matrix and let it's energy dissipate for three full seconds. During that time anyone on the hologrid would be fully exposed. The Sanguinarians may even be able to leave the area in that time should they discover what it is we are attempting." T'Zaq explained. "Also, because of the wide area field we will be utilizing, anyone in the target area will be caught in the beam. Selective transportation will not be possible."
Lieutenant Commander Elaithin piped in. "Still sir, it sounds like the best plan available. I'm sure we can get volunteers to help trick the Sanguinarians into entering the holodeck. And once the hologrid is dropped, we can make sure the Sanguinarians stick around for the three seconds it will take to trap them in the transporter beam."
Seth gave a nod of his green, tooth-filled head. "You can count me in on that action." He pointed with a thumb towards his chest.
Mister Savat gave a logical nod. "The holodeck does offer a few strategic advantages over other areas, such as ten forward which was mentioned earlier. For one, when the holomatrix is dropped, there is nothing in the way except open space, and the targets of the transport. If our visitors can be lured onto the holodeck, and forced to remain there for the seconds it will take to deactivate the grid, it should make the transport much more easier to accomplish since a simpler formula can be computed for the wide area beam."
The General listened to Savat, and then glanced at T'Zaq. "Is that right 'mate?"
"Mister Savat is correct Captain. The holodeck does make a logical choice for a target area on board the ship. And while an area such as a shuttle bay might be more practical, it would probably be easier to lure the visitors to the holodeck, which is used more for recreation by the crew." T'Zaq agreed.
"Then it's a plan." The Captain nodded. "Let's get started setting it up. 'Commander Elaithin, assemble a team that will have the unenviable task of luring our visitors onto the holodeck when the time comes. 'Commander T'Zaq, work with 'Commander Savat at preparing the transporter for what we are going to attempt."
"Of course Captain." T'Zaq nodded.
"'Commander Peterson, you can work with Doctor Dothan on devising some method of tracking our guests. The Gorn sense of smell will likely be the basis of whatever device you come up with." The Captain ordered.
Kent scratched his head; having entered the meeting late, it was apparent that he had missed a great deal of the conversations that had taken place. "Yes sir. I'm sure Doctor Dothan can fill me in."
Andree nodded at Kent, realizing the Chief Science Officer was a bit lost with the conversation.
"Well, that's pretty much it then." The Captain stated while rising out of his seat to end the staff meeting. "The rest of us should stay on our toes and keep our eyes and ears open. Any sightings of the visitors should be reported to Security immediately." Lee glanced around and verified that everyone understood stating, "Let's do it 'mates. Dismissed."
Just when the shuffle to leave the conference room was about to commence, Doctor Dothan called out, "Captain. Can I make a request sir?"
Lee glanced over at the Chief medical Officer. "What is it Doctor?"
"One of my Doctors had a little misunderstanding with security. He's being held in the brig and I could really use the extra set of hands in sickbay." Andree explained.
Stopping in his tracks where he was preparing to exit, Elaithin doubled back at over hearing the Doctor's request. "Are you talking about Sansky?" Jii didn't even have to wait for the Doctor to respond. He could tell by Andree's face that he was. "You are talking about Sansky!"
Captain Price watched as Jii stepped over to join the conversation. Lee remembered how emotionally unstable Doctor Sansky was when he last saw him in sickbay. So it was not that big of a surprise to find out he had landed up in the brig. He was probably just sent there to cool off after the attack on his... friend.
"Well, yes. I am speaking of Doctor Sansky." Andree admitted, then turning to the Captain, he asked, "I'd like to have him released sir."
The Captain opened his mouth to agree, but the Chief of Security venomously protested.
"Not on my watch Doctor. Sansky attacked one of my officers and escaped from his cell once already. He's better off staying exactly where he's at. Right in a cell where he can't attack or harm anyone else." Elaithin stated adamantly.
The Captain did a double take. "Sansky attacked an officer?"
Andree reluctantly nodded. "Yes Captain, I suppose he did. But you don't understand, he was only trying to get to Nathan in order to treat him. You saw how much he cares for him sir."
The Captain gave a slight nod. He was still surprised to learn that Doctor Sansky was gay and he hadn't known it.
"That's all fine and well Doctor, but the ends do not justify the means. Attacking a fellow officer is a court marshal offense. Sansky can't be released." Elaithin pointed out.
"And I agree that he should be held accountable, but there were mitigating circumstances..." Dothan argued.
"None of which warrant attacking one of my security officers and breaking out of the brig Doctor!" Elaithin stabbed back.
"Enough gentlemen." The Captain intervened. "We are not trying the Doctor's case here. I understand how distressed Doctor Sansky was over the attack of his friend. But I agree with 'Commander Elaithin in that we can't allow our crew members to go around attacking their fellow officers."
"Superior officer Captain." Elaithin added, "Sansky attacked a Commander. Commander Phil Terrington. He's due for retirement in just eight months."
Lee glanced over at the Chief. He knew old Phil quite well. The partially bald officer was a thirty-year man in Starfleet and had served on board over a dozen vessels in the fleet. He was quite happy to be ending his career on board a Galaxy class cruiser. "Cri-key. When Sansky goes off the deep end, he really goes all the way."
"Well Captain, now that Nathan is stable, Doctor Sansky has calmed down. And while I agree he should account for his actions, I still can use him in medical to help treat our wounded." Andree repeated his request.
Lee glanced over at Elaithin who was remaining quiet but shaking his head from side to side. Security officers tended to see things as black and white. And they didn't take kindly to *anyone* that would dare attack a fellow Security Officer, no matter what the reason. Let alone an elderly, well-respected and loved officer like Phil.
"I'm sorry 'mate. But you'll just have to do with the staff you have and the two EMHs. For now, Sansky will need to stay put until after this crisis is over. Then, after answering to the charges of jail break and attacking a fellow officer, if he still has a career in Starfleet, he can resume it at that time."
"I understand Captain. But I had to ask." Andree stated.
"No worries 'mate. It wasn't you that made him attack a fellow crewmember or break out of the brig while he was being detained there. It's not your fault." The Captain soothed.
"Of course sir." Andree nodded. Glancing over, he could see that the room had emptied out. "If you'll excuse me Captain?, there's a lot of work to do and Commander Peterson is waiting."
"Aye." The Captain nodded. He then turned to Lieutenant Commander Elaithin and Lieutenant' Zonhieb who was standing by waiting. "I'll let you go to 'mate. I know you have a team to assemble and two visitors to track down."
"Yes sir. Consider it done." Elaithin responded as he and Seth exited the conference room.
Captain Price was the last officer to leave and reenter the bridge.
*** Mean while ***
Nilani had her tongue securely pressed in the corner of her mouth while she put the last seals onto the optical connections she was rigging up. The bio-containment force field was nearly ready to activate. The Engineer knew how important it was to get the field established before the four Sanguinarian stasis chambers opened and exposed the ship and crew to whatever deadly disease they were allegedly infected with. Prior to her stint in the parallel universe, Nilani was a medical Doctor on board the USS Galaxy. Shaking her head, it was hard to imagine that life that seemed so far away. Anymore then it was to imagine that a few hours ago she was one of the Sanguinarian's victims down in sickbay, drained of several pints of blood.
"That should just about do it..." Lieutenant Kahn declared while lowering the console back into place. "With these modifications, it should be possible to maintain the bio-containment field for an extended period of time."
Doctor Harper glanced away from the Sanguinarian coffin-like chambers and back at the pretty engineer. "We should test the field."
"Well, yes. But you need to realize, once it's been activated and those chambers open up, we can't lower it at all without risking exposing the ship to whatever they are carrying. That being the case, we will need to bring one of the EMH doctors down here to work on the Sanguinarians once they revive." Nilani pointed out.
Harper stopped and scratched his head. "You are right. I hadn't thought of that."
Nilani smiled at the stupid male doctor. She was thinking what a dumb ass he was, and smirked while thinking that he was probably thinking her smile was a flirt of some sort. Men can be so dense at times. "Not to worry Doctor. The ship has holo-emitters installed throughout key sections just for the EMH2. This cargo bay happens to have one. Computer, activate EMH2 program Doctor Martin."
["Unable to comply. The Doctor Martin program is currently running in sickbay."] the Computer responded.
Nilani gave a pouty frown. "How rude."
"Well our guests appear to be stable Lieutenant." Doctor Harper stated. "And since I will be of no use down here with the bio-field in place, I can go up to sickbay to take over for the EMH2 and have it redeployed down here."
"That would probably be a good idea." Nilani stated. "I'll run some tests on the bio-field and then activate it to establish a safe environment. When you get to sickbay, divert Doctor Martin's program down here."
"That sounds reasonable Lieutenant." Harper smiled. "Thanks for all of your help with the force field. I'm sure the crew will be a lot safer because of it."
Nilani didn't bother returning the Doctor's flirtation. Though she found it humorous that he would be interested in her, a relationship with a man was the last thing she wanted. "Just part of the job Doctor." Nilani said while turning and giving Doctor Harper the cold shoulder.
by Ensign Ozwald Thatcher, Tactical
with additions by Captain Price
and Lord Vlad, 1 of 2 Primary Adjunct of Unimatrix Vampire, Hemo-Borg.
*** Engineering ***
Three Engineers attempted to pry Snowy's snout loose from a warp intake valve. The engines had risen 7.2 degrees Centigrade since the pig's nose had wedged into the normally open manifold. If the situation continued much longer, parts would begin to fuse from excess heat.
Lt Solinda suggested lubricating the offending snout with grease. Once this logical idea was adopted, it took little time to extract the pig and cool the circuit to normal temperatures. Snowy thrashed about somewhat, coating his entire hide with grease (as anyone who had just injured their nose might). For a pig, a hurting nose was a major thing. He oinked and squealed in pain. Wisely, the engineers moved the liberated animal into a containment field so it wouldn't get into further mischief.
Preening her Vulcan ears, Lt Solinda offered more advice. "I am scheduled for my rest interval in 5 minutes. As I live 2 quarters down from Ensign Thatcher, owner of this mammal, logic suggests engineering's schedule would be least impacted if I return the stray pet."
*** The Shaft ***
Soon, Solinda and the pig were in the turbo lift heading for the crew quarters. Because the improvised containment field was not portable, the pig was riding 'loose' inside the elevator. In back of the Vulcan, the porcine one could not be seen from most points inside the ascending car.
"Lt Solinda to Ensign Thatcher", the Vulcan woman summoned keeping one eye on the porker.
"Yes, Lt. How may I help you?" Ozwald responded.
"It is I who may assist you.", The Vulcan said coldly. "I have located your pet and am headed towards your quarters to return him."
"That's great news! I'll return home and meet you in a few minutes."
Before Solinda's turbo lift reached Thatcher's floor, Lord Vlad decided to pay her a visit.
"Hello, V'Kandrvi" the vampire greeted.
"That is an inaccurate and unwelcome response, C'hatt 'L."
"Vell, lovely. Voo look marvulous. So kind of Voo to drop in vor a vite" Vlad said with his cheesy accent, taking another step towards the Vulcan.
Solinda attempted to kick the alien in the groin, but he didn't appear to be any more solid than most holographic projections. She allowed one brow to raise in fascination as Vlad moved over and began draining his Copperglobian snack, not seeing the relatively tiny pig behind the Vulcan.
Solidifying in order to feast on his victims, a cowering Snowy moved away from the attacker. Unprepared for this, Vlad tripped and fell in one direction. Since her legs could not support her after such a major blood loss, Solinda fell to the deck, barely conscious.
Vlad decided it was pointless to eat the pig, since he preferred the abundance of beefy cattle on the ship! So the Vampire went elsewhere, leaving Snowy behind, scared but unharmed.
*** Bridge ***
By the time the Turbo lift carrying Snowy and Solinda reached the bridge, the Vulcan had gone unconscious from the massive loss of hemoglobin.
Snowy darted off the lift and circled the bridge, dodging away from crewmembers who approached, squealing and oinking from his fright. The senior officers were just exiting from the emergency staff meeting at the conference room when Snowy was running around and squealing his snout off.
Rebecca, having retaken her post at the Tactical barstool on the bridge, was the closest to the turbolift and the entrance point where the squealing pig entered. So it was the tactically brilliant yet socially inept officer who found the body of Lt Solinda. There was a mad squeal as a thoroughly frightened Breen Tundra pig scurried off the command center, leaving a greasy smudge behind him.
~~Oh noodles.~~ was Rebecca's first thought.
"Von Ernst to Medical. We have an officer down on the bridge in turbo lift 1. Prepare for emergency transport directly to sickbay."
["Acknowledged, Sir. We are locking on now."] Medical confirmed. A moment later, Lt Solinda's body was transported off the bridge. But Snowy continued to charge and run around the circular command deck, squealing as if his life depended on it.
Hearing the commotion on the bridge, Captain Price exited the staff meeting, the last officer to exit the conference room, and emerged to a variety of officers chasing a greased pig around the bridge. The rest of the officers stayed behind to develop other options while Lee took care of the command task.
Shortly after Price arrived on the scene, Snowy stopped running near the Tactical station, where the pig detected his owner's familiar scent. Scurrying in and out of the barstool legs of Rebecca's chair, Von Ernst was struggling to try to grab the slimy pig when the red alert klaxon went off shriller than normal, scaring him further. The animal promptly reacted by fertilizing the deck plates. And since his aft end was pointed towards the Captain's chair.... Let's just say the swine shared the perfect aim known to the Galaxy's tactical staff! Fortunately, Price was not in the targeted seat, having just emerged from the conference room. And Lt Von Ernst wasn't sure whether to laugh or die in embarrassment from her vantage point near the turbolift. In her bent over-upside-down position, she could see the Snowy, the command chair, the pig droppings on the command chair, and across the deck, the General, standing in disbelief with his hands placed on his hips in a less then happy posture.
~~Double noodles...~~ Rebecca thought as she reached for the pig.
The commander of the Galaxy had seen many things, but this was the first time anyone had... "Cri-key!" he exclaimed. He decided to deal with this matter himself, as he had a personal affinity for the command chair.
"Price to Ensign Thatcher." The Captain said already exacerbated by the recent events and attacks throughout the ship.
["Ozwald here, Captain."]
"Ensign, Do you know where your pet is, 'mate?!"
A somewhat puzzled Thatcher responded ["No Sir, Lt Solinda has not delivered him to my quarters as she promised."]
"The Lieutenant was found unconscious in the turbolift. She's been taken to sickbay. But your frightened Pig iis on the Bridge! I WILL NOT HAVE MY BRIDGE TURN IN TO AN ANIMAL FARM, ENSIGN, DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR?" the perpetually calm Australian spoke with uncommon ire. "Get up here and collect your pet. Bring something to clean up his mess. Then contact engineering and design a device to keep Snowy in your quarters." Lee's voice crescendoed further for emphasis. "If you can not control your pets 'mate, then you will not be allowed to have them. Do I make myself clear Lieutenant?"
*Mess? Mess? Snowy, you must have really pissed the Captain off*, Ozwald though. But he wasn't dumb enough to say that. ["Perfectly clear sir. I'm on my way now. Sorry sir."] Ozwald groveled.
Glancing around the bridge, the Captain couldn't help but notice how the rest of the senior officers and command crew were smirking at the ridiculousness of the scene. Taking a moment to reflect, the General also had to give a slight sigh. "See if you can contain that animal until Lieutenant Ozwald arrives. As for the rest of you, you have your assignments."
The giggling staff nodded and began carefully shuffling out to the turbolift to head for their areas of the ship.
Captain Price just stood there and watched while Lieutenant von Ernst continued trying to get the speeding Snowy out from under her barstool.
"This never happened to Picard on the Enterprise." Lee mumbled to himself under his breath...