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Tal Tel-ar

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Tal Tel-ar last won the day on November 13 2013

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About Tal Tel-ar

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    Andorian security. Accept no substitutes.
  • Birthday 01/15/1965

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    Chief of Sec & Tac

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  1. ((Planetary sciences lab, USS Atlantis)) :: Torali was studying some unusual plants that they had picked up here in the expanse, an activity that she enjoyed doing. She wished they could have taken some samples of the lower evolved life forms as well, particularly those that would have fallen within the insect classification. It would have been very informative to see how they interacted with the various different types of plants available here on the ship. :: :: She had just finished examining a section of climbing vine under the microscope when. :: Serala: =/\= Yellow alert. All hands to general quarters. =/\= :: Trouble… she looked over at the plants, then stood up and started to move them one by one back into the special containment pods that regulated their light, water, humidity, temperature and environment. She was just picking up the last one when another announcement came over the ships internal PA system. :: Serala: =/\= Red alert. Brace for impact. =/\= :: Torali hurried to secure the plant, closing the door of the containment pod and……… She was thrown through the air, slamming into the ceiling, bouncing off to hit one of the other work stations before she struck the wall. :: ((Time Jump)) :: Torali opened her eyes slowly, she was in pain, a lot of it. She tried to move but failed. She heard whimpering, wondered where it came from and then realized that it was her, she was the one whimpering. :: :: It was a struggle but she managed to move her left arm enough to push whatever was on her back off. She had to wait a few moments while she tried to catch her breathe but even that hurt. Finally pushing with her left arm again she managed to get her chest off the floor. Enough so that she could tap her comms badge. Nothing happened so she tried again. :: oO Something…. must be…. Wrong…. with the…… communications system…. The lights were out…. No… not out…. Emergency lights were on… something had happened…. What…. She had been thrown…. Who had…. No… not who…. What…. If lights were off…. Then she was on her own…. No comms…. What had happened…. What…. :: :: At this point she passed out again. :: ((Short time jump)) :: Torali felt pain, waves of it crashing against her senses, jolting her to consciousness. She remained motionless. Slowly her thoughts collected, weird memories, visions, bounced around like pieces of some kind of mental jigsaw. Something happened…. a collision…. How… :: :: She opened her eyes, tried to but only one would open and even that hurt, her face was wet, she lifted her head, whatever it was, was sticky. It took her a few moments to realize that it was blood, her blood. Power was still out, only a feeble bit of illumination came from the emergency lights. :: :: She tried to move her arms under her to push herself up from the floor but a fresh wave of pain flashed through her, crashing against her senses, threatening to pull her under, she fought it even as a scream of pain exploded out of her. :: Elzizabath: AAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: Her left arm was a single throbbing mass of pain, any attempt to use it resulted in more pain. She lay there sobbing, tears running down her face as she tried to control her breathing. Her mind struggled to make sense of what was happening. :: :: She had to check it, had to know what was wrong with it. Somehow she managed to roll towards her right arm, new waves of pain slashed into her as she did, someone was shrieking, high toned animal like sounds that grated against her mind. Who could it be, why… :: ((Short time jump)) :: She woke up, opened her eyes, one eye was glued shut, it would not respond but she was looked up at the ceiling, not the floor. She had rolled over, her breathing was ragged, the pain was a dull throb that danced along her nerves, constant, why had she rolled over…. Her arm… she needed to examine her arm…:: :: She took a big deep breath and moved, pushing herself up using her right arm, regretting it as soon as she did it. Fresh waves of agony slammed into her brain, forcing another scream out of her. :: Elzizabath: AAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!! :: One that was followed by shrieks… :: Ahhhhh.. hhhhhhh… sshhhsshh…. Aaaahhhhhhh… :: shrieks… it had been her… not someone else… she was alone. :: :: She looked down at her arm, it was covered in blood, bent at a weird angle and she could see something sticking out of her arm, something white and jagged, something…. It was one of her arm bones. :: :: Her head sagged back, she knew she was in trouble, no one had come looking, maybe no one would. :: :: She tried to collect her thoughts, to remember her training. This was part of her basic medical training at the Academy, so much like what she had learned back home as a child. She had to deal with it, she had to do it now before she became too weak from blood loss. :: :: She looked around, her vision swimming in and out of focus, spotted one of the roller chairs lying on its side partly on top of her left leg. She had to think about her breathing, sweat started to run into her one open eye. She blinked rapidly, the chair, it might work. :: :: She lifted her right leg, tried to shift the chair closer, gritted her teeth as she did. The pain, something was wrong with her left leg as well. She fought to keep her eye open, blinking to focus her vision. Hooked the far side of the chair with her right foot, edged it closer. The top suddenly shifted and it fell towards her, hitting her belly, wrenching another scream out of her as it did. :: Elzizabath: AAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: She felt a wave of oblivion crashing down over her, her vision faded, darkness swept over her…. NNOOOOOOO…. She snapped her head back, banging it against the deck, the sudden pain snapping her eye back open, more moans whimpered out of her uncontrollably. :: :: She fought it, visions of her mother, father, siblings, home all jumbled, all chaotic crashing through her thoughts, fracturing them, making it hard to think. What was she doing, why was she doing it, was it important, all she wanted to do was sleep. Again she slammed her head back, the impact cleared her thoughts, her arm, she had to fix it. :: :: Torali blinked and looked, the chair was closer, on her, she reached out with her right hand, fumbled, than grasped the material of her left sleeve, she lifted, white hot pain, searing, blinding, slammed into her senses, the scream exploded out of her. :: Elzizabath: AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: Somehow she managed to keep lifting it, to flop her left hand, the wrist into the junction where the arm of the chair and the back met. Every movement was sheer agony, she wanted it to end, even death would be better than this pain, NNOOOO…… she gritted her teeth, the shrieks of pain rumbled past her teeth, her lips peeled back, air racing in and out of her lungs, her entire body shuddering as she fought the dizziness, her single eye, looking down her body, seeking, looking, blurring in and out as she blinked rapidly, knowing what she had to do, dreading it, then kicking out with her right foot, kicking the chair, yanking her left arm…. :: Elzizabath: AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! ((Search and rescue efforts same desk)) :: Asno paused to wipe the sweat from his face, blinking his eyes as he did due to the sting of the salt. The air was starting to get stagnant, even worse you could see it thanks to the faint hint of smoke and other contaminates floating in it. :: Savil: Did you hear that? Plito: Hear what? :: He replied as he glanced over at the Vulcan scientist. :: Savil: Sounded like a scream. Plito: No. Not very likely either. Not with the amount of damage in this section. Savil: You forget I am Vulcan, we have superior hearing. Plito: :: Asno turned with a grin on his face even as he replied. :: Superior? Savil: To that of most species, just not Andorians, Caitians, Worene, Plito: Etc, etc, etc. I get it. Savil: Still I am sure I heard someone scream. :: Asno considered the possibilities that they might have missed someone in this section of the ship, especially as it was so close to the area where the alien vessel had impacted. The very simple fact that they had already found and tagged 3 dead crewmen for retrieval later would seem to make it highly unlikely, still if there was anything he had learned from doing this kind of job was that anything could happen. :: Plito: If you’re sure then I guess we better double check this entire section again. :: With that said he turned and started to work his way back, looking everywhere and checking everything, his powerful halogen light making a difficult job a little easier. :: ((Planetary sciences lab)) :: She groaned, her one eye lid fluttered, then opened. The room was dimly lit, the red warning light blinked on and off. Agony washed over her and she fought to lift her head, looking down at her arm. It was covered in blood but she could no longer see any sign of the bone sticking out. She was not sure if that was a good thing. She tried to move that arm but all it did was send another wave of pure senses shattering pain slamming into her brain. :: :: She felt weak, dizzy with her vision blurring in and out. She had to struggle to control her breathing, to slow it down. Somewhere within her thoughts was the knowledge that she had to, that it was important for some reason. Regardless the simple act of slowing down her breathing helped her, ideas, thoughts, memories skittered across her mind, some ridiculous, some fragmented and some were tantalizingly distracting. :: :: Slowly things made sense, thoughts blended, coalesced into useful ideas, into priorities. Her arm, she needed to stop the bleeding, to treat it before she got any weaker. Her head slowly rotated as her eye searched, looking around, checking the room within her area of sight, looking for anything she might be able to use. :: :: The room was a mess and most of it was out of sight, blocked by work stations, tables, chairs, debris of all kinds. All around her was shattered equipment, scientific devices, things useful in research but completely useless for her current needs. Still a part of her mind scratched at her thoughts, frantic with the need to get her attention, to focus her mind, intellect battered and near to shattering but frantic with the primitive need for survival. :: :: Fear fought with pain, both threatened to overwhelm her mind, to drown it in an avalanche of dread and agony until death silenced them both. Her head continued to move, her eye to search, thoughts bounced, fragmented, scattered like her vision, blurring in and out. :: :: Suddenly her head stopped moving as her thoughts congealed. For a moment her vision was stunningly clear. Near her was a lab coat, poking out from under some debris, so far away but still, a lab coat. :: :: She reached out with her good arm, pulling herself towards it, pushing with her one leg, fighting the waves of pain that threatened to drown her in a sea of tranquil night. She heard whimpers, mindless moans of pain, some part of her aware that they came from her, not caring, just reaching, pushing, inching closer to her goal. Tears poured from her one eye, the one not glued shut, vision blurring in and out, darkness threatening to engulf her again, like some creature of the deep, swimming closer, there but just out of reach, hungry, relentless. :: :: Visions of her mother, the academy, father, siblings, space, home, friends all danced through her thoughts, distracting, elusive, like mirages, confusing her, the coat, she had to reach the coat, why, why was it so important. She kept moving, pushing, reaching, why, nothing made sense, all she wanted to do was sleep, to drift off, to escape the pain. :: :: Her fingers finally touched it, so far, she had come so far, mere feet, endless feet, why, why did she need it, the pain kept washing over her, her vision fading in and out and always there just out of reach prowled death, insatiable, hungry, patient. :: :: She squirmed a little closer, her fingers grasping, grabbing, holding as she pulled, strained, it weighed tons, fought her, immobile, resolute, then it suddenly moved, stunning her as she hit herself, gasping at the sudden pain even as she pulled it free, dragged it over her, onto her. She rolled onto her side, the effort bringing more tears to her eyes, sweat pouring down her face and another scream from her ravaged throat. :: Elzizabath: AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: She sobbed uncontrollably as she struggled to wrap her arm, her efforts causing her wound to soak the white garment in moments even as she pulled it tighter, another scream exploding out of her even as the waves of darkness leapt back, scattered by the pain. :: Elzizabath: AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: She secured the makeshift bandage, then wrapped the excess around her arm, her eye fluttering, the lid so very heavy as she slipped into the darkness, drifting off, lost in the dark. :: ((Nearby)) :: The two men searched through the debris, carefully shining their halogen lights into the dark and smoke fogged areas that they could not safely reach themselves. :: AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! Savil: There it is again. Plito: Ok. That time I heard it. Savil: I think it came from that corridor over there. :: As he said it he pointed to where one wall was buckled in so badly that it almost completely blocked the corridor he was pointing at. :: Plito: Team 3 should have checked that corridor out from the other side. :: As he said it he shone his light over the damage. :: Savil: Could the corridor be blocked from the other side as well? Plito: Maybe. :: He replied as he climbed up some debris to get closer to the damage. :: But it looks pretty clear once you get about 20 feet further down. Savil: I will radio team 3 and let them know. Plito: No. We are a lot closer, besides I think we can crawl through here if we are careful. Savil: :: He felt his left eye brow rise as he looked at the narrow gap that was still clear. :: I think it may be a good thing that we missed lunch. Plito: :: When he heard what his friend had said he could not help turning and looking back even as he replied. :: And you keep trying to tell me that Vulcans do not have a sense of humor. Savil: A simple statement of fact is not a humorous joke. Plito: If you say so. :: He replied as he lay on his side and started to crawl, pull and push himself through the thin gap. :: :: Savil watched for a few moments and when it was obvious that his friend was going to make it through he carefully climbed up the debris piled around the thin gap before he started to climb through as well. :: :: It took the two of them 3 or 4 minutes to do so safely, the two walls so close together in spots that it touched their chests and backs at the same time and they had to turn their heads sideways. Still they made it although there were a couple close calls, especially when Asno’s pants got caught on something and he had to rip them free in order to keep moving. :: :: Once on the other side they both looked around. :: Plito: Any suggestions? Savil: The only thing I can suggest would be to try the planetary science labs. :: As he said it he indicated the partly damaged door to their right that was partially buried under debris and rubble. :: Plito: :: He moved closer to the door, examining it with his light. :: We might be able to force it, at least enough so that we could get in and search it. Savil: I believe you may be right. :: He replied as he moved up beside Asno and the two of them grabbed hold and pushed or pulled depending on their position. :: :: They both strained, sweat running down Asno’s face but slowly, bit by bit they were able to move the door, not a lot, but enough so that they could slid past it and enter the room. :: Plito: This place sure took a beating. :: He stated as they moved carefully through the mess, everything seemed to be damaged, moved or thrown about. :: Savil: Over here. :: He called to his friend as he moved towards the young woman lying in a pool of blood. :: Plito: :: Asno moved swiftly and banged his knee on a piece of projecting metal. :: Ooww. Savil: Are you OK? Plito: Yeah. :: He replied as he knelt beside the young woman and started to assess her injuries. :: That’s a bad break. :: He said indicating the woman’s arm. :: Looks like she straightened it herself. Savil: Is her condition as bad as it looks? Plito: Worse. If we had not found her she would have bleed out in less than an hour. As it is it will probably be touch and go. Savil: If you do not need me I will go and get a stretcher team. Plito: I should be ok. :: He replied as his friend got up and carefully made his way to the door. As for him he did what he did best, do the impossible and save a life in crappy conditions with only an emergency medical kit. :: ************************************ PNPC – Ensign Torali Azivalora Poracin Elzizabath Science Officer USS Atlantis, NCC-74682 And PNPC – Ensign Asno Plito Paramedic/Emergency Combat Medic USS Atlantis, NCC-74682 As simmed by Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar Chief Security & Tactical Officer USS Atlantis, NCC-74682 darylpea[...]@hotmail.com Daryl.Pea[...]@ontario.ca Tal Tel-ar’s Writer’s ID: T237708TT0
  2. OOC - Second day of shore leave, shortly after 0930 hours ((Corridor, USS Athena)) :: Asno walked quickly along the corridor away from his quarters and towards the nearest lift. He was a tall man, 5’11” with an athletic build and a quick easy way of moving. He had shoulder length black hair that was currently tied back into a pony tail, a deep tanned complexion and brown eyes. :: :: Currently he was out of uniform, wearing loose black pants tucked into mid-calf high black boots with a loose cream colored shirt with loose sleeves that was open half way down his hairy chest. Over it he was wearing a dark brown leather vest. Tucked into the top of his left boot was a knife, the hilt of which was plain black with a stylized silver V like shape built into it. :: :: He started to jog, moving with a strong gait but when he turned the corner leading into the next corridor, the one with the nearest lift he had to suddenly stop and reach out to prevent slamming into a young woman who was in uniform. :: :: Dressed in a fresh uniform and full of renewed determination after a good night's sleep, Nia strode purposefully down the corridor. She had decided, upon waking this morning, that she would not get lost today. Of course, if she was being honest with herself, she doubted her ability to find her way round this ship had improved that much over night but one could always hope. :: :: Nia was about to turn the corner into, what she presumed would be another long, and not at all confusing, corridor. When a athletically built man with shoulder length black hair came jogging round it. His hands found her shoulders and gripped as he forced himself to a sudden stop .:: :: Slightly stunned by his sudden appearance she struggled to think of something to say. He was standing so close to her, they were the same height and the only thought that moved through her stunned brain was that his eyes were a perfect shade of brown. :: Plito: Are you OK? :: Asno asked in a concerned tone, his warm brown eyes mirroring that concern as he let go of her shoulders which he had instinctively grabbed in order to prevent a more serious impact between them. :: :: The man's warm brown eyes mirroring the concern in his voice as he let go of her shoulders. :: Stone: Yes, I... I'm fine. :: Her brain sliding back into gear. :: Plito: It was completely my fault. I was in a hurry and not really looking where I was going. :: He replied as he stepped back placing a more acceptable distance between him and the young woman. As he did he could not help but notice both her hair with its vibrant and unusual color and her eyes. If he had to guess he would say that she was an Antosian. :: :: He took a step back as he spoke and Nia finally pulled her eyes away from his. :: Stone: Don't worry about it. :: She smiled at him, hopping it would offer reassurance. :: :: Asno stood about arm’s length away from an attractive young Antosian woman, one he had literally just ran into and now he was introducing himself to her even as he tried to maintain a calm and relaxed image. His sudden contact with her had been a surprise and if he had not grabbed her by the shoulders he might have knocked her to the ground by accident. What had surprised him was his reaction to her. :: Plito: Plito, Ensign Asno Plito, paramedic. :: He replied with a smile as he offered her his hand to shake. Her grip was firm, the skin soft, warm and for some reason he found himself checking her out, impressed by her beauty and poise. :: Stone: Ensign Niastrave Stone, HCO. Plito: Niastrave, :: Asno did his best to pronounce it exactly as she had said it, being careful to use the same diction that she had when saying it even as he released her hand. :: that’s an interesting name. Stone: Call me Nia. :: Her eyes slide across him. He was her height, with shoulder length black hair tied back into a pony tail, his eyes were brown and his skin tanned. He was dressed in a cream shirt with a dark vest and loose black trousers tucked into mid-calf high black boots. Nia tried not to notice how well everything fit him. :: Stone: oO He's handsome, I'll give him that. Oo :: The thought made her blush and she cast her mind around for something else to say. :: Plito: Ok Nia. Nice to meet you. :: He responded with a big smile, one that softened his features in a nice way. :: :: Asno noticed it when her cheeks changed color, the rosy hue both surprising and charming, causing him to notice just how entrancing her eyes were, a beautiful deep green, different from the deep green of her hair. :: Stone: So what brings you down this corridor at, :: she checked the time, :: 0930? Plito: I was going to meet a couple friends; we are going over to the station to explore. Stone: :: A slight frown creased her brow. :: Isn't it still closed off? Plito: Yes, most of the station is still off limits but most of what must have been a common area, a kind of recreational zone has been deemed safe. Not sure what we will find but that’s the reason to go exploring is it not? :: He asked in an excited tone. :: Stone: :: Her smiled returned, this time with a playful hint to it. :: Always looking for adventure? Plito: Ha, ha, ha, :: He laughed easily, in a soft masculine manner. :: That’s one way to put it I guess. Stone: So why explore the station? Plito: I like new things, new experiences, it’s one of the reasons I joined Starfleet. Stone: I can understand that. It's one of the reasons I joined to. Plito: I think that’s why we all joined. :: He replied even as he moved his arms to indicate everyone around them, on the whole ship. :: Stone: The adventure of if all, the mystery. Everyday a chance to see something new. Plito: That an excellent way to phrase it. :: Asno paused for a moment as he admired the way her face went from beautiful to enchanting just because of her smile. :: Sort of poetic almost… :: She looked down and away from him when he said that and it was a few moments before a slight sigh escaped from her as she looked back up at him again. :: :: Nia smiled again, her eyes flickered down then glanced at the time. With a slight sigh she looked back up at Asno again even as she spoke. :: Stone: Well, I need to finish getting myself sorted here; check in with Medical, that sort of thing. But maybe we could happen into each other again soon? Plito: I think I would like that. :: As he said it he smiled again. :: How about tonight? Stone: :: She bit her lip, thinking. :: Not tonight, I'm still getting settled in here, shore leave won't last forever and I want to be prepared. oO Make sure I know everyone's names, or even just the senior staffs'. Oo Plito: OK. I can understand that, how about this weekend instead? Stone: :: Her left eyebrow raised slightly. :: Persistent are we? Plito: My people have an old saying, “Only the determined bird gets the worm. “ It means if you want something do not give up. :: As he finished saying it he smiled again. :: Stone: oO Attractive and charming. Oo Nice phrase. :: Nia hid her smile. :: It implies you have something to pursue. Plito: I think having a chance to get to know you is something worth pursuing. Don’t you? Stone: :: This time she couldn't hid her smile but she couldn't resist being coy just one last time. :: If you continue with that kind of flattery, I might just take you up on that offer. :: As she walked past him, Asno turned to watch her. He smiled slightly, hoping that she might turn back, waiting patiently and was rewarded when she stopped just short of where the corridor turned away to look back at him even as she spoke. :: Stone: Saturday, 1900? Plito: Sounds great. :: He replied with a big smile. :: Stone: Okay. I'll see you Saturday. oO Well that didn't last long. Oo :: She shrugged to herself. :: oO The coy thing doesn't suit me anyway. Oo :: For a moment longer Asno kept watching as she turned away and walked around the corner and out of sight. If anything his smile got slightly bigger as he turned to hurry away as well, his friends were waiting. :: TBC/TAG ************************************ Ensign Niastrave Stone HCO Officer USS Athena A239401NS0 and PNPC – Ensign Asno Plito Paramedic/Emergency Combat Medic USS Athena, NCC-97780 As simmed by Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar Chief Tactical Officer USS Athena, NCC-97780 darylpea[...]@hotmail.com Daryl.Pea[...]@ontario.ca Tal Tel-ar’s Writer’s ID: T237708TT0
  3. Data here used on the species wiki page OOC – First day of shore leave ((Science Department, USS Athena)) :: Hsina had just left what had turned out to be a somewhat less brutal interrogation than she had expected, no doubt made a little easier by the good night’s sleep, hearty meals and vigorous workout she had enjoyed between her arrival on the ship and her appointment with the Intel officers. :: :: She still hadn’t met the captain though no doubt she would be summoned as soon as the intel reports were in, but it was clear that her file and codes had been uploaded and she now had at least basic access to some of the science facilities. :: :: Basic clearance, strangely, couldn’t access most of her own research concerning the Preservers and other ancient spacefaring species, but that was to be expected. What she was able to access was the Starfleet unclassified library, which included the one item she wanted most; the definitive history of the Preservers, published in Oxford University Press way back in the year 2324 one Hsina Amman, Ph.D and doctoral candidates Natsuko Imai, Jason Klein and Semak, who was a Lieutenant Commander in Starfleet on an educational leave. Based on Hsina’s work decoding Preserver cuneiform script 19 years earlier, the four scholars had undertaken the massive project of translating all extant Preserver texts and, most importantly, cross-indexing them with ancient Terran, Vulcan and Klingon writings that linked Preserver contact with those respective species. :: :: Information, including full cuneiform lexicon and translation matrix loaded into a PADD, Hsina logged out of the research system and headed for the door, almost running into the last thing she expected to see, which was to a say a woman of roughly the same height. She had known a few, VERY few, but it still usually came as something of a surprise. :: ******* :: Torali stretched and then reached up to massage her neck. She had put in a lot of hours already and the little interruption by that barbarian had not helped. A glance to the side showed that it was past time that she should have stopped and gone to get something to eat. :: :: With a shrug she turned off the computer she was working on and stood. As she did her mind wandered back to her home. She had not been back since she had informed her father that she was going to enlist in the Federation militaristic war machine as a scientist. He had exploded, the first and only time she had ever seen him angry in her life. :: :: In fact that was the last time that she had spoken to him. He could not grasp the concept that his daughter had chosen to live with and work beside such primitive barbaric species and while she understood his worries and his disdain for any species that could not rise above any and all forms of violence her intellectual curiosity had driven her to take the step that she knew might drive a wedge between her and her people. :: :: So far it had proven to be a mix of interesting new experiences and disappointments, mostly disappointments. Far too many of the species that belonged to the Federation were noticeably inferior, barbaric and savage. Even the Vulcans who were intellectually on a level close enough to be considered members of an intelligent species harbored a dark and primitive capability. :: :: Still the exposure to so many different species, cultures, worlds and societies was a treasure trove of unexpected new concepts, information and even experiences. All of which she recorded, preserved in analytical and concise scientific reports that she diligently sent back to her world. :: :: She doubted that it would make any difference with her father but she knew far too many others and not just scientists who would read, debate and study her reports. If her people were to survive in this savage universe they needed to be warned, to be prepared for just how uncivilized all of those species were. :: :: With a shrug she shook off her thoughts and turned to leave. As soon as she exited the lab she had been working in she had to stop before bumping into someone who was almost as tall as she was, a female Lt. Cmdr. that she had seen a few times here in the science department. :: Elzizabath: Excuse me. Amman: Pardon me, I should pay more attention. :: Torali found it refreshing not to have to look down when speaking to someone, especially another female even if she was old enough to be her mother. :: Elzizabath: Ensign Torali Azivalora Poracin Elzizabath Amman: Hsina Amman, nice to meet you. Elzizabath: I came aboard the USS Athena just before leaving the Alpha Quadrant. Amman: I came aboard yesterday. I’ve actually been stranded on that space station the last three weeks, and was transported there from a very, very distant planet, most likely by some sort of gate. Elzizabath: I had heard about that, the circumstances which resulted in that occurrence seem to be unusual and deserving of further scientific research. Unfortunately that is not my field of expertise, is it yours? Amman: I’m an archaeologist actually. You? Elzizabath: Technically I am a planetologist but I also have a solid understanding of most of the sciences associated with planets and their ecology. I have been assigned to this vessel to study the various new planets this vessel comes into contact with. Amman: Well, being as far out as we are, its likely I’m stuck here for at least the near future. Elzizabath: I would expect that to be correct. :: Torali tilted her head slightly and asked a question in a curious tone. :: I take it you would have preferred not being rescued or was there some place you would rather be? Amman: Well, a ship assignment is not what I was looking for. I was in charge of a rather extensive research project for the last few years, based on a bronze-age planet. High gravity, harsh weather, no technology. I’d gotten rather comfortable not having any of the bureaucracy or protocol of Starfleet. Elzizabath: Aahhh…. I think I understand…. :: She paused for a moment then continued. :: Having scientists on a military vessel seems wrong… being free of the bureaucracy… the savage Neanderthal mentalities of most Federation individuals would have been a wonderful way to immerse yourself into proper scientific research. Amman: I wasn’t there to study a primitive culture, rather exploiting a long-lost library left behind by the Preservers; ancient spacefarers who seeded many of the galaxy’s humanoid species. Elzizabath: That is not what I mean, merely that maintaining an intellectual devotion to peaceful scientific research should be the goal of all scientists. Amman: Is that why you are here, to peacefully study us Federation savages? Elzizabath: Call it scientific curiosity. My people have never been able to understand how the Federation has managed to survive considering the barbaric and violent nature of most of the species that are members of it. :: She paused for a moment and then smiled as she continued. :: In many ways that phenomenon deserves to be studied so that some kind of understanding of the events and forces involved can be better cataloged and understood. Amman: Yes, it is rather surprising we haven’t blasted ourselves into tiny bits yet. Elzizabath: I meant no insult by my words, my only real desire is to develop a better understanding of the various species that make up this Federation. My people find it difficult if not impossible to understand why any intelligent being would ever resort to physical methods of dealing with problems in regards to others. It is my hope that by exposing myself to these species I may eventually develop some king of logical hypothesis as to why they do it. Amman: No insult taken, I was being serious. It really is surprising. My ancestry is Greek and Iraqi, specifically Spartan and Assyrian, with the Spartans in ancient Greece known for their military prowess and purity and the Assyrians of ancient Iraq for their military power and brutality. Elzizabath: Spartans…. Assyrian…. Ohh… I read about them at the academy. They were both ancient human cultures, militaristic, savage, brutal… an unusual heritage for someone who values logic and knowledge. Amman: The Spartans, and all ancient Greeks were eventually enslaved by the Romans, who not coincidentally based their military on the records of the Assyrians. Sometimes I think I was born 30 centuries too late. :: For a human this woman was surprisingly intelligent, showing unexpected depths. Too bad most of her species seemed to lack those fundamental qualities. :: Elzizabath: That is a surprising statement. Considering what I know about those cultures you would have been treated as less than a person, useful only for the work you could do and the children you could produce. I believe that would have been a waste of a brilliant mind. Still that does not explain why you are here in this quadrant. Amman: That bronze age world I was on was a Preserver seed world, an almost exact duplicate of Earth in the 7th century bce. I was, in a way, living among my Assyrian ancestors, right down to their language, their foods and their religion. Elzizabath: Ahhh…. Hence the unusual connection to your own heritage, still I believe that this opportunity must have also allowed you to make numerous discoveries that may have an impact on the history of your own world and people. I almost envy you the opportunity that you were able to involve yourself in. Amman: Tell me about your species. Since by your own admission they lack an understanding of violence, I’d be curious to learn of your history, and how they reached such a state. Elzizabath: My homeworld is Ash’lie IV in the Draco Sigma Sector of the Alpha Quadrant. It is deep within the current borders of your Federation. My people had mastered space travel and visited most of the planets in my own system more than 5,000 years ago. Amman: I’m slightly familiar with it. Your people didn’t leave many footprints on surrounding worlds. Elzizabath: We never really traveled farther than our own system although we did visit many of the systems within a twenty light year radius. On those worlds that we observed intelligent life we left satellites to observe and send back data. Amman: 5,000-year-ago even the Vulcans were 3,000 years before Surak taught them to embrace logic and suppress emotion. The Preservers were still seeding worlds and extracting resources, but had already abandoned the Alpha quadrant a few thousand years before that. Elzizabath: It was due to these observations that we learned about the savage, violent nature inherent in all of these species. Long debates among the council with input from a vast majority of our intellectual leaders resulted in us removing those satellites and withdrawing back behind the border of our own system. Amman: Hence the lack of an exploratory footprint. Elzizabath: It was just a precaution, to prolong the inevitable contact that must eventually occur once one of those species mastered enough engineering and scientific knowledge to allow them to produce some form of space craft. Most of our leaders believed that those species would never reach that stage or that they would cause their own extinction before it could occur. Amman: We came very close on many occasions to wiping ourselves out, but give us time, we might still bring about our own destruction. Elzizabath: That is a conclusion that many of our intellectual leaders believes applies to all of the other species we have encountered so far. I just find it unusual that someone from one of those species would agree with them. Is there a reason for this belief? Amman: Despite all of our altruistic laws and lofty ideals, most of our species maintain not only their potential for violence, but dare I say our reliance on it. Thanks to a 60-year nap in a stasis tube I’ve lived more than a century, and I honestly believe that the galaxy is just as dangerous, or perhaps even more so than it was at the time of my birth. Elzizabath: You would find many of my people who would agree with you. Still it is nice to meet someone who does not ooze testosterone fueled primitive aspects. :: As she said it she smiled. :: Amman: I’m perhaps not as peaceful or evolved as you might think. In addition to being a scientist, I’m also a boxer, a Terran blood sport in which two fighters, following certain rules, beat one another up with their thinly padded hands until a certain number of timed periods elapse or more often, one is knocked unconscious. Elzizabath: I observed a few such matches at the academy as well as others involving martial arts, although I never did learn where the arts came into those activities. Even those sports, I believe that is what they are called that did not have physical violence built into them seemed to be aggressive and rudimentary with undertones of primitive savagery. :: Torali paused for a moment as she considered how best to ask the question she now wished to ask. :: If I may ask, why? Amman: I started as a teenager and have always excelled at it. Physical strength runs in my family, and I guess I enjoy the contest on many very different levels. The thrill of the challenge, the pain and even the pride at winning far more often losing. :: Torali shook her head. The answer matched those that she had received from others during her years at the Academy. It still made little sense to her, how could anyone enjoy hitting another sentient, intelligent being. It was cruel, sadistic and inhuman. Yet they did and neither party involved in the barbaric acts seemed to even realise that it was wrong. If anything both parties seemed to emerge from the encounters experiencing joy, happiness and elation. Again she shook her head, still baffled by the very concept and the fact that everyone else around her accepted it as a normal part of their existence. :: Elzizabath: I fear that I may never understand. However that is part of why I joined your Starfleet, to learn about other species. Amman: I take it your decision wasn’t a popular one. Elzizabath: My people may never understand, my family certainly did not. None of them have spoken to me or replied to any of my messages since I announced my decision. ::Hsina found it almost amusing that a species that prided itself on being so highly evolved would be so narrow-minded when it came to one of them wanting to explore and study. Amman: Not a particularly evolved response. Elzizabath: You must understand. While some of my people do have limited but regular contact with other species only a very small percentage have ever left our world to live and work among aliens. Amman: Strange that they chose to excommunicate you over your choice to explore and serve. Elzizabath: It was my decision to join Starfleet that created the insurmountable gulf between me and my family. Regardless of all the medical, scientific and altruistic acts that members of the fleet take part in each and every year it is and always will be considered by my people as a militaristic war machine. One whose sole purpose is to fight, maim and kill others regardless of the reason for such actions. Amman: Well, we do fight, main and kill others from time to time, though for the most part it is usually done in defense of innocents or to thwart the aggression of others. Elzizabath: My studies at the Academy for the most part were fairly complete in regards to this aspect of service. That does not mean I understand or condone such actions. Amman: Tell me, have you ever taken a life? I mean personally, up close. :: The question was both shocking and abhorrent at the same time. Torali could not help allowing the feelings to be mirrored on her face but her time at the Academy had presented her with so many shocks that she was quickly able to regain her composure and hide her reactions behind a mask. :: Elzizabath: Never!!!! I have never intentionally or accidentally struck, injured or by some action allowed someone to be injured. It would be unthinkable. Amman: Not even in self-defense? Elzizabath: No. Not even to protect myself. Amman: What if it came down to self-defense, or defense of your shipmates? Starfleet is pretty clear on such things. Elzizabath: I enlisted under a provision that ensures that I will never be expected or asked to take part in any such acts of barbaric violence. Amman: I have, more than once. The first time was when I was 19-years-old, at university in Los Angeles, a big city on Earth. :: Against her better judgement Torali found herself asking the question. :: Elzizabath: How did it happen? Amman: It was self defense. I was late coming home from school, and a man grabbed me and tried to force himself on me. Elzizabath: Force himself…. :: Torali had to think about that for a moment. It was a foreign concept to her people but one that she had quickly learned about while living on Earth herself. :: He wished to mate with you. :: The nod she received in response confirmed her guess even as the other woman continued tio speak. :: Amman: He knocked me to the ground and then got on top of me, but I was able to grab a rock and I hit him in the head with it, and kept hitting him until he was dead. Elzizabath: Your actions were extreme… :: Torali said even as she allowed a slight smile to soften her features. :: but from what I have learned about your species it may have been instinctual, not a rational response…. Did it not bother you??? Amman: I’m not really sure. It bothered me at the time, and I remember having nightmares for years afterwards, but I never felt sorry or that what I did was wrong. If anything, I think what bothered me the most was the thought that he wasn’t really any different than me, or anyone else for that matter, but somewhere in his past, or perhaps in his genetics, something went ever so slightly differently and resulted in a criminal or a deviant, instead of a scholar, or a baker, or anything else that humans could grow up to be. I don’t even think he was that much older than I was at the time. Elzizabath: It is incidents just like that, that make me glad that I was raised on my world. :: As she said it Torali thought back to her childhood, the flowers, music, art, a time of wonder and joy. It brought a wide, warm smile to her face even as she continued to talk. :: Still it must have been a traumatic experience for you. :: The smile had faded as she talked but her expression was still warm and soft. :: Still you seem to have survived more or less intact. Amman: Honestly I hadn’t thought about it for many years, but I’m sure it was a formative experience. :: Hsina found herself enjoying the conversation despite the dark memories it brought up. :: Elzizabath: You humans. :: Torali said with a smile and a soft laugh. :: How many species could say that of attempted rape and defensive murder. Amman: Quite a few I would imagine. From what I’ve seen, violence, at least in defense seems more the norm than the exception. Even in just the criminal context, there are so many crimes related to taking a life. Homicide is the generic, of which are varying degrees of murder depending in intent, manslaughter is a lesser version. Voluntary, involuntary, reckless, justifiable, I’m sure I am missing a few. Elzizabath: I stand corrected…. That is yet another peculiarity that I have not yet mastered, this series of descriptive designations used to describe and define the parameters of someone’s death. Amman: Well, we must differentiate between natural causes and otherwise. Elzizabath: For us it is simple. Either one is alive or he is dead. Amman: Rather simplistic, don’t you think? Elzizabath: Every member of my species that dies is medically examined. In this way we continue to improve our understanding of medicine and the frailties of the physical form. Amman: Frailty is something I do my very best to avoid. A great comedian from my world named Groucho Marx perhaps said it best, “Time wounds all heels.” Elzizabath: That makes no sense. :: Torali replied with a puzzled expression on her face. :: Amman: It’s a play on an older saying, “Time heals all wounds”, meant to help people grieving a loss or suffering an illness or injury. Reversed it’s a metaphor for aging and the delicacy of life. Elzizabath: I think I understand… :: Torali still had a puzzled expression on her face, it was just not as puzzled as it was. :: sort of, but….. this helps? Amman: My father died when I was a young girl. He was a police officer and was killed on duty. My mother died about 7-years-later when I was a teenager. She was a medical doctor, healthy and strong, but she slipped, fell down a flight of stairs and broke her neck. It doesn’t matter how young or how strong you are, when it’s your time, it’s your time. Elzizabath: That sounds more like fate and fate I understand even if my people do not believe in it themselves. Still from what I understand of most human cultures there is a grieving process, it varies from culture to culture but most seem to have one. If it is not prying was that true for you? :: Torali asked politely. :: Amman: I remember when my father died, I cried for weeks. We all did, my mother, my brother and my two sisters. It took us a few years, but eventually life returned to a new normal, and then that ended too. Elzizabath: If there is one thing that I have learned since leaving my world, it is that regardless of the species nothing stays the same forever, change is inevitable. :: Torali paused for a minute as she tilted her head and pursed her lips while looking away. It only lasted for a moment then she returned her gaze back to the Lt. Cmdr. and continued to speak even as she tilted her head back upright. :: Obviously something else happened, may I ask what? Amman: Nuri, my oldest sister was away at police academy, following in father’s footsteps. Day, my brother was a professional boxer, and Samira, my other sister was a college student. For a few weeks Samira and I stayed in the house, but she withdrew, hardly said a word, ate almost nothing. One day I came home from school and found her hanging. Elzizabath: Hanging…. I am unfamiliar with that term…. I understand how things hang but a person? Amman: She took her own life, asphyxiation. :: A shocked expression appeared on Torali’s face, one that lingered even as she spoke in a tone that was also stunned. :: Elzizabath: But that is illogical…. to take one’s own life….. :: She reached over and placed a hand on the older woman’s shoulder. :: I do not understand… why… there is no logic to such an action… this must have been…. confusing… disorienting… how did you respond? Amman: I’m not sure really. That time is rather foggy, but I remember moving in with my brother and he made me go to the gym with him after school and do my homework while he trained. Elzizabath: He worried about you, cared for you… that is good, I think I would like your brother, as a person, not as a barbarian. :: As she said the last Torali smiled to take any sting out of her words even as she dropped her hand from the other woman’s shoulder. :: Still it is obvious that you overcame a series of unusual traumas to become the person you are. I have a feeling that your brother was instrumental in that development. Amman: Well, I started boxing, stopped mourning, stopped hurting, stopped crying and stopped fearing. Right or wrong, I learned that pain and pleasure were basically the same, and that since everyone will die anyway, there was no point fearing it. Death revealed itself to me as just an inevitable part of life, the last page, a comforting future rather than something to be feared. Elzizabath: Death comes to all living things, it is not to be feared, nor is it to be embraced. My people believe that life is for living, to be enjoyed. So we learn, live, laugh and love. We do so for as long as possible, knowing that eventually it will end. Amman: Many of my kind believe the same way. As I’m sure you’ve noticed, we can be a rather chaotic lot. Learning is seen by many humans as a chore, by some as a challenge, and by a few of us as a passion. Laughing, living and loving, we try to do as much of those as well. In fact it can be argued that most human behavior at some basic level is aimed at attracting an appropriate mate. Elzizabath: ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, :: Torali laughed, the sound almost musical for the sheer sense of joy that rang through it even as it lit up her face. :: Sometimes I forget just how different our species are. :: She finally managed to say when the laugh died out but the smile remained. :: Amman: So you no longer have baser passions? Elzizabath: Those are for the most part myths and preconceptions regarding my people. Yes we do enjoy the physical act but just as much as the emotional aspect. It just does not rule our lives, it is merely a part of a healthy and rewarding life. To be enjoyed as much as music, art, dancing, the thrill of learning something new, reading a new book or hearing a new poem. :: As she finished speaking she turned and motioned in a way that seemed to ask, shall we walk while we talk. :: :: Hsina walked alongside this most interesting officer, eager to learn more about her and her kind. :: Amman: I think most humans have evolved far beyond their animal instincts, but still the drive remains. I tend to think that most humans put far too little effort into their relationships and perhaps too much into their careers and hobbies. I am quite guilty of this myself. I’ve only had two intimate relationships in my life, and neither of them went particularly far. The physical aspects were fine, but I’ve always found it difficult to make a deeper connection with living people and tend to prefer studying people who’ve been dead for millennia. How do your people approach physical intimacy? Elzizabath: I would not go that far, :: Torali replied even as she started to walk along beside the other woman. :: still I will admit that from my experience my people do tend to pour a bit more effort into the physical aspect, much like some of your athletes do with their sports. Especially the one called a marathon. Amman: I’ve run more than one marathon, and can’t imagine the “physical aspects” having that kind of duration. Is that normal with your people? Elzizabath: Not bragging, merely a statement, still I will admit that I could be wrong, after all my experiences in this regard would not be what you could call all that conclusive. After all I did spend most of my time at the Academy learning about your Federation and the species in it, not experimenting. Amman: I would very much like to learn more, perhaps experience such a different approach to life. Elzizabath: That is the scientist in you. :: Torali replied calmly. :: Something that I think we both have in common. Although I believe that we approach it in slightly different ways. :: Torali glanced over at the other woman as she continued to speak and walk. :: Would you not agree? Amman: While archaeology was always my primary field, anthropology was my minor and is quite closely related. In my last assignment, it was always a struggle when reporting back to Starfleet to drop the mannerisms of the culture I had assimilated into. I love to “go native” as many scholars refer to fully assimilating into a culture to facilitate a deeper understanding of it. Elzizabath: As I thought, while I have enjoyed studying the various species and cultures I have encountered since joining Starfleet I have never felt the urge to “go native” as you call it. However the idea is intriguing. Could you elaborate on the concept if you do not mind? :: She asked is a curious tone. :: Amman: Pisces IV had most of the cultures that Earth had 30-centuries-ago. While I spent most of my time among the Assyrians for access to the Preserver library, I also spent considerable time with the Shang Chinese and the Egyptians, and was able to integrate into different strata of their societies and truly “go native”. Elzizabath: An interesting concept, one that would most likely result in a better and fuller understanding of the culture and species. :: For a few moments they walked along in silence before Torali again spoke. :: However I doubt that such an experiment would work for me. I fear that certain aspects of my cultural beliefs would prevent me from being able to achieve a status even faintly close to what you describe. Amman: That’s the point, you have to abandon your cultural beliefs and live within someone else’s. Certainly you’ve had to adapt somewhat to be where you are now. Elzizabath: My first year at the Academy was most definitely a cultural shock but I was fortunate to have a good roommate who helped me to adjust. Amman: How so? Elzizabath: Perela was a Serilian from Seril IV. However she had spent most of her formative years off world with her father living aboard a freighter. As a result she was able to fit in with little to no difficulty. Amman: People in isolated environments like a freighter, or even a farm, tend to be far more egalitarian, while in most large groups gender norms tend to be more strict. Its something I’m always very keenly aware of when I try to blend into a society. Most humans tend to have rather rigid views on age, gender and many other immutable characteristics. Elzizabath: She mentioned that. :: Torali replied calmly but then her tone changed to one tinged with puzzlement as she continued to speak. :: Even after all this time I have difficulty understanding how any intelligent species could logically think there is a difference between the sexes. From what she told me most females from her world would never have the opportunity to join Starfleet like she did. :: The two of them stopped at the lift and waited for it as they continued to talk. :: Amman: But there are differences, beyond the strictly anatomical. There is a spectrum in any given trait, but averages definitely exist, and are vary among species. In humans men do average stronger than women and women on average have a longer life span. Of course there are men who live to be vastly older than the average woman, and women who are vastly stronger than the average man, but in general there are traits and identifiable differences. Elzizabath: ha, ha, ha, ha, :: Again Torali laughed her musical laugh before she continued to speak. :: From what she told me she was most definitely not your typical female Serilian but I think that was a good thing. If she had been I doubt that she would have gotten into Starfleet or been assigned as my roommate. :: As she finished talking the lift doors opened and they both entered. :: Amman: And how exactly did she help you adapt? Elzizabath: She encouraged me to try different things, foods, activities, even some sports…. :: A large smile lite up her face as she spoke. It stayed there as the lift doors opened and they walked out into the corridor. :: Amman: Sports? Elzizabath: I know, silly really but it seems that there are some that do not require a baser instinct for savagery, besides, regardless of anything you may have heard about my people we all tend to spend a portion of every day in some kind of physical fitness activity, swimming being one of the most popular. Amman: I love sports, at least individual sports. I was never much of a team player, but I did always enjoy direct competition. I’m a mediocre tennis player, but I’ve always enjoyed the game. It’s the same with swimming, where I have excellent endurance but am rather slow. Which sports have you tried? Elzizabath: Most were classed as track and field activities but I also tried gymnastics which are very similar to something we have on my world but we consider it to be a visual performing art set to music however Perela and I did play a lot of tennis as well. I found it challenging and an excellent way in which to exercise. Amman: Perhaps we can play some time. Elzizabath: I would love to, for some reason I have found that it is not as popular an activity among most humans. :: As they turned a corner Torali had to pause her speaking for a moment and sidestep out of the way or she would have bumped into a purple skinned being with three eyes and strange waving tentacles hanging down from the top of its head. However as soon as it had passed she continued speaking. :: If you do not mind my asking, are there any other activities that you enjoy? Amman: You mean hobbies? Well, I’m not very good yet, might never be, but I’ve gotten involved in ballroom dance and try to practice at least two or three times per week. I also like combining my professional knowledge with cooking, vinting and brewing. Elzizabath: An interesting selection of activities. I am not sure what form of dancing, ballroom is but cooking I am familiar with and correct me if I am wrong but vinting is to create wine and brewing is for ales? :: Looking over Torali saw her new friend nod to indicate that she was basically correct. :: Amman: That’s the fun part. Ancient recipes are very easy to find, and with archaeological evidence we can often get a fairly accurate picture of the processes they used, but in many cases ingredients are no longer the same or even available due to changed climates and extinct plant and animal species, and of course we can often only guess. Elzizabath: While I was at the Academy I heard about some university students that had managed to recreate what many believe may be one of the first brewing recipes on Earth, something from approximately 5,000 BC. Amman: The oldest I’ve managed was an Sumerian millet beer dating to about one thousand years later. How about you, any hobbies? Elzizabath: Me. I paint, do some drawing, play a few musical instruments. I use to perform as part of the Ulasivierathalosovoron Olarisian Ensemble. My mother is one of the senior musicians with the company. Amman: Olarisian Ensemble? Elzizabath: Olarisia is the most popular form of performing art on my world. Every major city has a couple dozen performance troupes. :: Hsina was genuinely curious. :: Amman: Can you describe it to me? Elzizabath: If I had to describe it I would say that it is a large spectacle. :: Torali paused for a moment to consider how best to describe just what a performance was like before she continued. :: Think of it as a hybrid blend of Earth like ballet combined with circus de soile acrobatics and backed up by a symphony orchestra of 50 plus musicians and an audience participation that might resemble those individuals attending a performance of the Earth cult classic “Rocky Horror Picture Show” but without the audience wearing any silly costumes. As you might expect most performance groups have at least 100 performers. Amman: I’m not familiar with the Picture Show you mentioned, but it does sound like something I’d like to see. What is your part in it? Elzizabath: I played the coralis, an instrument that is faintly like one of your Earth saxophones but with one mouth piece connected to two sloping metal tubes, one longer and thinner than the other which is slightly thicker and each with its own keys. Amman: I sort of know a woman who was a world class violinist, but I don’t believe she still plays. Elzizabath: Violinist? :: Torali answered in a slightly puzzled tone even as she glanced over at her new friend. Then her expression changed as she continued to speak. :: Oh yes, a stringed instrument from Earth. It has some wonderful tonal qualities as I recall. What happened? Amman: It’s a long story. Someone my shipmates and I rescued, a woman out of time. Elzizabath: That is an unusual statement. If you do not mind my asking, how and why did you describe her in such a way? :: Torali asked as they turned the corner and came to a stop near the entrance to the officer’s mess hall. :: Amman: We found the wreck of an early Federation starship in orbit around a remote world with unusual conditions much like the planet Ba’ku in that it caused organic cells to regenerate themselves. The crew of that ship had been stranded on the surface of Kjenta II for almost 220 years, but were all in their physical primes. In the three weeks I was there I reverted physiologically ten years. It’s a rather desolate place, extreme gravity and weather, but it was also the proverbial fountain of youth. Elzizabath: That is a human reference correct? :: Torali asked and was rewarded by a nod even as she continued to talk. :: something to do with one of your mythological stories, water that prevents aging…. An interesting biological mystery, one that would be sure to interest anyone with a medical background, I take it that the Federation is now studying it? Amman: It’s quarantined now. Elzizabath: That is a unexpected decision. I would have thought that scientific curiosity would have won out… still that has no bearing on your story. What happened to her? The violinist. Amman: Major Irina Pavlova is her name. She was accepted to the Moscow symphony in the year 2165, but chose to join Starfleet instead. About a week after we had evacuated the survivors to the Discovery she tried to play, but couldn’t make her left hand work the strings without severely cramping. That was three-years-ago, and when I saw her a few-months-ago she didn’t mention playing again, and I didn’t think to ask. I hope she did. Elzizabath: My musical talents may not be nearly as extensive or impressive as my mother’s but I would miss them greatly if for some reason I could never play again. Did you ever play an instrument? Amman: I tried the guitar and the flute as a child, but I had no talent whatsoever, and I’m a horrible singer. Something about female vocals and tenor just not being a pleasing combination. Elzizabath: I think I understand, most species that I have encountered since leaving my world seem to produce only a small number of musicians, artists or performers. Amman: None of my my brothers and sisters ever had any musical talent. I guess its just not in our gene pool. Elzizabath: Almost everyone on my world practices some form of artistic expression. Amman: You are known for it. Elzizabath: I had to laugh when I read the Federation description of my people at the academy. We were described as a species of artists, our world a gallery of visual and performing arts to delight the senses. Our achievements as doctors, scientists or engineers received only a short mention. Amman: I’ve only read of your world once, and if my memory serves, we hadn’t made first contact yet when I was a student. I hope you’re not offended by my lack of knowledge or my people’s oversimplification of your society. Elzizabath: It did not offend me. After all there has been less than a dozen visitors to my world from the Federation that I know about. I can see how it might be possible for them to have come to the conclusion that they did. Amman: Not unlike some of your people’s impression that we are all violent barbarians. Anyway, I do need to take care of a few things and I believe I’m due to be interrogated by a punch of Intel types who seem to think I’m not who I say I am. Should be fun. Elzizabath: Oh… I’m sorry. I did not mean to keep you. :: Torali replied in response to her new friends statement that she had to run as she was expected elsewhere. :: Amman: Oh no, I most enjoyed our conversation. If you don’t mind, I’d very much like to spend more time with you. Perhaps you could show me one of those performances on the holodeck? Just because I have no musical or artistic talent doesn’t mean I’m not a discerning spectator. Elzizabath: I would like that. :: She replied with a smile. :: This has been an interesting meeting, one that I welcome the opportunity to continue at another time. Amman: I’ll see you soon. Elzizabath: Till we meet again. :: Torali replied as her new friend turned and left. As for her she turned and entered the officers mess. It was long past time that she should be getting something to eat, or at least that was what her stomach was telling her. :: TAG/TBC ************************************ Lt. Cmdr. Hsina Amman Science Officer USS Athena, NCC-97780 Author ID 0238908HA0 And PNPC – Ensign Torali Azivalora Poracin Elzizabath Science Officer USS Athena, NCC-97780 As simmed by Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar Chief Tactical Officer USS Athena, NCC-97780 darylpea[...]@hotmail.com Daryl.Pea[...]@ontario.ca Tal Tel-ar’s Writer’s ID: T237708TT0
  4. ((Science Labs, USS Athena)) :: Tal walked past various different science departments, looking for the one that he needed. When he spotted it he slowed down, approached the door and entered when it automatically opened for him. He glanced around, looking to see if anyone was currently present. :: Tel-ar: Anyone here? Elzizabath: Here in the back. :: At the sound of the voice Tal’s antenna twitched. Youthful, female with a underlying hint of controlled tones. It reminded him of the civilian nurse that the Captain had added to the crew a while back and kept on when they transferred vessels. :: :: Tal circled past a number of elaborate and completely confusing devices and workstations until he spotted the woman. She was over 6 with long straight pale blond hair that hung down to the small of her back. She wore a lab coat over her science uniform but he could see the rank on her collar, she was an ensign. She was slim, with long delicate fingers and the pointy ears that one normally associated with Vulcans but there was no way anyone would ever mistake this young lady for a Vulcan. The tattoo on her face that started near the center of her forehead and circled out and around her right eye to end on her cheek was a colorful maze of swirls and flowers. It marked her as a member of the Ash’lie species which Tal found surprising. :: :: According to all the data that he had seen on them less than a hundred thousand of them had ever left their homeworld and only a small fraction of them had ever joined Starfleet. For there to be two on the ship, a civilian nurse and this scientist was highly unlikely but they were here. :: :: She finished what she was doing and stood up from where she had been slightly bent over working on something. As she did she turned to face him. As expected her face was slim with a high forehead, unusual greenish blue eyes and high cheekbones that gave her face a haughty appearance. :: Elzizabath: How can I help you Cmdr? :: She asked in that melodious tone that he had come to associate with others of her species. :: Tel-ar: I was curious if anyone in this department had examined the data in regards to the various different planets in this system? Elzizabath: Let me check. :: She replied as she turned back to the work station in front of her and quickly searched for the information even as she asked another question. :: Was there anything in particular you were looking for? Tel-ar: Any artificial or alien structures, artifacts, devices or facilities in the system other than the station. :: She worked away, calmly but with a certain degree of confidence that seemed to indicate that this was child’s play for her. :: Elzizabath: Scans show the 4th planet has the remains of a colony, it most likely had a population between 100,000 to 150,000 based on the size and number of buildings and was abandoned approximately 50 years ago. There also seems to have been 4 other colony sites on the planet, all abandoned at approximately the same time but with much smaller populations ranging between a few hundred and a few thousand. There are 3 deactivated satellites in orbit of the planet. :: She paused for a moment as she continued to examine more data. Then she continued to speak. :: Elzizabath: The 4th largest moon in orbit of the systems 8th planet, a gas giant has some kind of structure on the surface of it, estimated size is that of a Federation Saber class vessel. :: Again she stopped speaking for a few moments while she searched for anything else in the records. It took only a few moments before she spoke again. :: Elzizabath: The 3rd planet which is a desert planet shows signs that it was not always so desolate. There are numerous readings that might be an indication of unknown foreign objects beneath the sand. :: Tal considered what she had told him so far as she again searched the records for anything else. As expected the information available to him here was more useful for planning his next steps than the data he had been able to access by doing the scans himself. :: Elzizabath: There is a possibility that there is some unknown object on the surface of the 7th planet as well as something floating inside the asteroid field at the edge of this system. :: She stood and faced him as she continued to speak. :: In order to give you more conclusive information we would have to do further scans and deploy probes. :: Again she paused, her green blue eyes probing, curious but her voice resumed as calm and melodious as before. :: Do you wish me to do so Cmdr? Tel-ar: No Ensign. That will not be necessary. :: Tal replied. He had the authority that he could have ordered her to do so, his being the head of the Tactical department gave him that authority but they were far from the Federation and they had a limited number of probes on board and while they could most likely build more it would be a time consuming process. :: Elzizabath: Is there anything more I can do for you Cmdr? Tel-ar: No. Thank you Ensign. :: Tal replied before he turned and left. :: ************************************ PNPC – Ensign Torali Azivalora Poracin Elzizabath Science Officer USS Athena, NCC-97780 As simmed by Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar Chief Tactical Officer USS Athena, NCC-97780 darylpea[...]@hotmail.com Daryl.Pea[...]@ontario.ca Tal Tel-ar’s Writer’s ID: T237708TT0
  5. ((Shuttle orbiting Igguden III)) :: The shuttle approached the planet and started to slow down. :: Pilot: We are here Cmdr. Where do you want me to land? Tel-ar: Move into orbit above the largest land mass, above the large inland sea. Pilot: OK. :: He replied slightly confused, then again it kind of made sense. The massive Andorian had made the entire 4 hour flight without saying a single word, which for him was normal. Still it made you wonder why he was here. Not that he was going to be stupid enough to ask the man. He had something of a reputation, one that made you think twice before you asked him a question. As he brought the shuttle to a halt at the indicated location he spoke again. :: Stable orbit achieved Cmdr. :: Tal did not reply, he merely stood up, grabbed his pack and opened it, pulling out an unusual object. It was made of some kind of fabric, a case or bag of some kind with 5 heavily reinforced straps that appeared to buckle together in an unusual manner. Then he closed his bag and walked over to drop it on the transporter pad. :: :: He spent a few moments adjusting the controls and then beamed the bag onto the planet’s surface below him. :: Pilot: Uhhh…. Sir. The colony is on the other side of the planet. Tel-ar: I know Ensign. :: Was all he said as he merely readjusted the controls before he tossed the unusual bag onto the transporter pad and then beamed it into the upper reaches of the planet’s atmosphere. :: :: Then he set the timer before he also stepped onto the pad. As he turned he spoke one final time. :: Tel-ar: That will be all Ensign. :: Just as he finished speaking he was beamed off the shuttle to the same location as his unusual bag. :: :: The Pilot turned to glance back, saw the Andorian vanish in a shimmer and turned back to his controls. :: Pilot: What the @#$%^&*(). :: He exclaimed as he saw the read out on his sensors. The Andorian had beamed himself off of the shuttle into the upper levels of the planet’s atmosphere and was now plummeting towards the planet’s surface at an alarming rate. :: :: He automatically started to reach for the transporter controls off to one side of his flight control panel. Reached them and adjusted the controls to allow him to beam aboard an object falling at high velocity but at the last second he stopped himself. :: :: This was Cmdr. Tel-ar. The same lunatic who had attacked a Borg cube by himself. Yeah sure he had landed in medical, more dead than alive but he had survived. Still beaming yourself into the upper reaches of a planet’s atmosphere was a whole new level of crazy. :: :: Just then the sensors indicated that his decent was slowing. It made no sense but then at least he did not have to return and report that the man had impacted into the planet’s surface. :: :: Shaking his head he turned the shuttle and increased speed, heading back to DS285 as fast as he could. :: ((Above Igguden III)) :: Tal materialized high above the planet’s surface. The air was thin here, thin and very cold. The second the transporter affect had completed the job of transferring his atoms one by one from the shuttle, gravity took over and he started to plummet towards the ground below. :: :: He angled his body so that he was at an angle with his head down and his arms tucked in tight against his body. It allowed him to drop more rapidly. The frigid air battered his face and body, making his eyes water. Normally this would not be a reason to worry but it also made it almost impossible to spot the parachute falling below him. :: :: Tal blinked rapidly then reached up with one hand and wiped his eyes then partially shielded them from the bitter cold air. It took a few moments, even for his excellent vision but he soon spotted the object he needed. He altered his trajectory, shooting through the air. It was an exhilarating feeling, one that lifted his spirits and made him feel more alive than he had in months. :: :: Unfortunately as he dropped rapidly towards the hard unyielding surface of the planet, his parachute vanished with in the fluffy white expanse of a cloud. In seconds he followed it, one second buffeted by the wind yet still able to see and the next blind as a bat as the density of the water vapor instantly soaked him. That added to the temperature made it feel like he had just dove into some foggy winter wonderland. :: :: His inner clock warned that he was quickly reaching that danger point, the one where even with a parachute he would still be traveling to rapidly, that any impact with the ground would result in broken bones. :: :: Just then he emerged from the cloud, his eyes quickly scanning his surrounding followed by his spreading his arms and legs, leveling off to decrease his speed. He had passed the parachute, it was now above him. Added to that was a cross wind, a brutally strong one that snatched the parachute and started to move it away from him. :: :: He had to alter his flight path, angling to follow it while letting it drop closer and closer to him. :: :: He reached out to grab it…. Missed…. :: :: For a moment panic threatened to rear its vile head as Tal spun his body, twisting to follow the chute, then bringing his legs and one arm tightly together as he aimed head down towards the ground. The sudden shirt, the increase in speed was drained off as he leveled off, his free hand reaching, grasping, fingers touching but failing to grasp the straps as it spun away from him. He spread his arms and legs, his wet clothes plastered to his body, breaking for that one split second needed to try again. This time his fingers touched a strap again, failed to grasp it as the wind tore it from him. :: :: He ignored the ground below, strained his body to fight the air, the wind, to maneuver closer, ever closer to the chute. Again he reached, touched, missed…. Then closed his hand over the groin strap that was suddenly whipped past him as the chute flipped end over end. :: :: Tal pulled it in, sliding both legs into the opening in the straps, having to fight the wind the whole time. Then he shoved in first his left arm, then his right and grabbing the buckles secured the straps against his midsection. :: :: Then he hit the release, waited a second as the chute deployed, his entire body slamming into the leg straps and his velocity was cut almost instantly by a half. :: :: Looking down he could see the lake, the dense jungle reaching almost to the edge of its dark blue waters. According to the survey data he had read the massive lake had very steep sides, quickly vanishing into the depths. The survey team had been sure based on the data that a large asteroid had impacted at this site causing the almost round depression that had eventually become a lake. :: :: Tal grabbed the straps that allowed him to control his angle of decent, the large rectangular chute above him spun slightly as he changed direction to take him closer to and over the water. :: :: He continued to fall, but now it was a more relaxing, almost sedate feeling when compared with the start of his fall. :: :: He angled farther from shore, he needed deep water under him as he was still coming down too fast. Not that it would have mattered, there was no clear ground anywhere near by where he could have landed anyway. :: :: When he reached about 100 feet above the water he pulled the release, detaching the chute and suddenly dropped straight towards the water. He braced his legs to take the impact, then slammed into the surface with bone jolting force. :: :: The force of the impact drove him down, down, down even as the density of the water bled off his speed until he slowed to a stop. Instantly Tal started to swim, his long legs and arms propelling him up and towards the shore as fast as he could. Time was now against him, the welcome drag of the water was now a danger, one even more dangerous that the possibility of not catching the chute had been. :: :: He pushed, ignored his bodies warning signs, the indicators that he should surface and surface soon. His lungs screamed for air as he refused to alter his angle, just kept swimming, stroke, kick, stroke, kick, stroke, kick…..:: :: Suddenly the water color started to change, to grow lighter, the warm sunlight filtering down through the water to where he was, He was close, he pushed harder, nothing mattered but the movements, stroke, kick, stroke, kick, stroke, kick…..:: :: Suddenly his arm followed by his head burst through the surface of the lake, he gulped in air, his lungs grateful even as he pushed harder, swimming for the shore, for solid ground, stroke, kick, stroke, kick, stroke, kick…..:: :: Tal took a second to glance up, the shore was close, 50 feet left to go, all he had to do was keep pushing, stroke, kick, stroke, kick, stroke, kick…..:: AAARRRRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: The sound erupted behind him, mingling with a massive explosion of water that crashed down around him. The sound slammed into the jungle in front of him and bounced back. Tal ignored it and kept pushing, stroke, kick, stroke, kick, stroke, kick…..:: AAARRRRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: The sound rolled over him again, an angry bellow of savage rage and blood thirsty need. It was angry, angry and hungry but Tal’s right hand struck bottom and he clawed his way forward, pushing himself, pulling with all his strength. :: :: In moments he had struggled the last few feet, staggering as he left the water. Only then did he look behind him. The creature glared at him, half of its head above water. Its two dark, eyes glaring at him, daring him to come closer. Then it opened its jaws to scream in frustration one last time. :: AAARRRRRRGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :: The teeth revealed were the size of daggers and looked to be razor sharp. It glared at him for a few moments more then, the head sunk beneath the water leaving only a few ripples to mark its presence. :: :: For a few minutes Tal merely stood, getting his breath back, enjoying the warm caress of the tropical sun as it slowly dried the clothes that he was wearing. :: :: Then he turned and started to walk along the shore of the lake, searching for his bag that he had beamed down. As he did he allowed a smile to drift across his face. So far this vacation had turned out to be both enjoyable and stimulating. Hopefully the rest of his week would be as well. :: ************************************ Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar Chief Tactical Officer USS Doyle-A, NCC-80221-A darylpea[...]@hotmail.com Daryl.Pea[...]@ontario.ca Tal Tel-ar’s Writer’s ID: T237708TT0
  6. ((Camped near the great lake on Igguden III)) :: Tal woke, stretched and slowly sat up. His antenna scented the air, the clean fresh air mixed with the numerous different scents of plants, flowers, animals, birds, death, decay and rebirth. :: :: The week had gone by so fast. The shuttle should be returning in a few hours to collect him and return him to the ship. Part of him was looking forward to it and part of him was dreading it. This life, this having to rely on his wits and strength alone had certain attractions that spoke to him on a depth that was almost unnerving. :: :: Still he had his duty and he was not one to avoid it, no matter what the problem. After all there were plenty of planets like this where he could visit or maybe even retire to once he had finally left the fleet. It was a pleasant thought, one worth considering for his distant future. :: :: With animal like grace Tal moved from a sitting position to a standing one. It was something that amazed a lot of people, especially due to his size and musculature. Few people expected such speed, such dexterity from one who looked more like a walking advertisement for a life of professional weight training. :: :: As he stood a small object leapt from a nearby branch and landed on his shoulder. In many ways it seemed to resemble a miniature humanoid but one with a very long slender tail and long slim arms and legs that seemed to be a bit out of proportion to the size of the tiny body and small head. It curled its tail around his back and over one arm as it sat there calmly. :: :: For the most part Tal ignored it, it had been his almost constant companion since his arrival on this world. Watching as he built his shelter in the upper reaches of its tree. It had soon realized that it had nothing to fear from him and had been following him since. :: :: Tal stretched again, raising his arms straight up and the creature moved easily out of the way, then scampered up one of his arms to leap to a nearby branch. Tal continued to stretch, twist and move, slowly running through a routine designed to loosen and relax every single muscle group in his body. :: :: Only when he was finished did he finally reach out for his clothes. He took his time dressing, enjoying the view, the sight of two of the large lake creatures fighting a few hundred yards off shore. The way the leaves danced in the cool summer breeze, the delicate flowers bending to the same breeze. :: :: This was a very beautiful world, one well worth returning to, even if it was only for the occasional camping trip. At the thought a smile brightened his features and he decided to leave most of the supplies he had brought with him. There was a natural hollow in which he could secure them, that way they would be here the next time he came. They were all made of high tech composite materials so wind, rain and exposure to the elements would not damage them too much. :: :: Tal packed the tools and equipment into the small hollow, then took down the heavy duty water resistant tarp that had served as a roof and after carefully folding it up packed it in on top of the gear. It took only a few more minutes to firmly secure the tarp in place. It would keep the rest of the gear safe and last a long time as well. :: :: Finished Tal packed the last few items that he would be taking with him, ignoring the small creature who watched him the whole time. :: ((Short Time Jump)) :: Tal heard it long before he saw it, the shuttle slowing its descent as it got closer and closer. It was obviously time and as he gave his tree top shelter one last look his comms badge chirped. Tal automatically reached up and tapped it. :: Tel-ar: =/\= Cmdr. Tel-ar here. =/\= Pilot: =/\= You ready to go sir? =/\= Tel-ar: =/\= Yes. =/\= :: Tal replied as he glanced around one last time as he reached out and grabbed his pack, swinging it easily up and onto one shoulder. =/\= Beam me aboard. =/\= :: As Tal felt the all too familiar tingling sensation that meant he was being disassembled into his various subatomic parts for the transfer to the shuttle he distinctly felt the sudden and unexpected contact of a small object, obviously the creature as he could feel its tiny hands and tail through his shirt. :: ((Shuttle)) :: It was too late to shoo it off as the next moment he reappeared on the shuttle standing on the transporter pad in the back. He expected the creature to panic, to act irrationally but all it did was to tighten its grip on his shirt while looking around. :: :: Tal turned his head to look at it, his steel gray eyes staring deep into its dark green eyes. It merely tilted its head then reached up with one tiny paw to touch one of his antenna. :: Pilot: Sir what is that? :: Tal considered the question carefully. Not once during the time that he had spent on the planet had he seen any other members of this creature’s species. Obviously there had to be more on the planet but there had not been any, anywhere near to where he had met this one. :: :: It was also obviously a social creature, one who must have normally belonged to a larger group. Otherwise it would never have spent so much time near him or overcome its natural fear of predators to get so close as to touch him. :: :: For some unknown reason Tal suspected that the creature had been lonely. That, that was the reason it had spent so much time following and watching him and if that was true then its actions in leaping into the transporter beam and its seeming lack of fear was due to it not wanting to be left alone again. :: Tel-ar: That Ensign is our passenger. Pilot: Passenger? Tel-ar: You heard me Ensign. :: Tal replied calmly as he took his backpack off his shoulder and tossed it onto one of the empty seats. As he did the tiny creature leapt off his shoulder onto the bag and sat, curling its tail around itself as it looked all around. :: Pilot: But Cmdr. I don’t think I should be bringing that back to the ship. Tel-ar: That’s perfectly all right Ensign. Consider it to be a direct order. That way your completely off the hook. Understood. :: The young man just stared at him for a moment, then glanced at the tiny creature, then back at the Cmdr. Only then did he move turning and sliding back into the pilots seat even as he replied. :: Pilot: Direct order it is Cmdr. :: He replied as he turned the shuttle and piloted it away from the planet’s surface. :: :: Tal turned and sat down, relaxing into the seat, ready to enjoy the flight back to the USS Doyle-A. :: ((Shuttle inbound to the USS Doyle-A)) :: Tal sat in the back of the shuttle, dressed in stained, worn and distinctly smelly clothes. He sat up straight, his back barely touching the backrest with his eyes closed but he was not asleep. His mind was active even though he had not moved a single muscle in over 3 hours. :: :: This ability to remain motionless for hours had been an essential survival trait for him while growing up. Without it he would have either starved or been killed by other savage predators or even more violent humanoids and while he often relaxed into what appeared to be complete rigidity he was actually very comfortable like this. :: :: Not the same with most people around him. It freaked most of them out and further distanced him from them as both a person and an individual. Tal did not mind, he liked the solitude, hence his going camping by himself. Still there were times when it was nice to have someone around. :: :: His mind drifted back to his last vacation as it had in-numerable times over the last week. He had spent almost every single waking moment and sleeping moment as well with Sherana, an exotic Orion woman trained to be a Klingon warrior by her adoptive father. She was a civilian aboard the USS Constitution-B, a botanist who was responsible for taking care of the ship’s arboretum. :: :: Like him she felt out of place, alone. They had found each other and as unlikely a couple as they were, they had enjoyed each other’s company. It helped that their unusual backgrounds and childhood upbringing provided them with many of the same outlooks and personality quirks that made it difficult for them to make friends among the rest of the crew. :: :: He hated to admit it but he missed her, not just her company which had been both a comfort and enjoyable but everything about her. The way the light caressed her green skin, the way she moved, her scent, so earthy yet intoxicating and almost indescribably sensual regardless of the medication that she took to curb and control her genetic quirk, to repress her pheromones. Most species and most people could not sense it but he could, even more so than most Andorians and he could understand how her kind had enslaved countless men. :: :: Still it had been the quiet times he had enjoyed the most with her, when it was just the two of them, when they could relax and simply enjoy each other’s company. He still remembered the last night they had spent together, the passion, the closeness, the feeling of moving against each other, kissing, caressing. Him waking up in the morning with her warm, tender body molded to his side, her head on his shoulder, her warm breath wafting gently over his chest. :: Pilot: Cmdr. We’re on final approach. Touch down should be in less than 5 minutes. :: The pilot’s voice snapped him out of the day dream, his eyes opened and the intense memory drifted back into his past as he replied. :: Tel-ar: Thank you Ensign. :: Tal glanced over to where his bag was, his tiny friend stirred, lifted his head and stared back at Tal with his tiny, large eyes. Then it stretched, arms and legs both straightened for a moment then it sat up looking around. :: ((Small time jump – Shuttle Bay, USS Doyle-A)) :: As the sound of the engine stopped, Tal stood up, reaching out and grabbing his bag as he did so, his friend leapt onto his arm and ran up it like it was a branch on a tree. Tal ignored this as he moved to the hatch and activated the controls to cause it to open. Then he waited patiently as the door unlocked and opened. :: :: Tal walked off, his long legs quickly taking him across the large room, past other vessels, mechanics hard at work, pilots inspecting their ships and various other crewmembers busy with their various duties. :: :: Out in the corridor he immediately headed towards the closest lift, climbed on and continued his journer to his quarters. :: ((Short time jump - Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar’s quarters)) :: Tal walked in, crossed his large empty room and tossed his bag onto his bed. Then he started to get undressed. As he did his tiny friend leapt off on his shoulder, bounced off of the bed and landed on the floor. Once there he scampered around the room. :: :: Tal tossed his dirty clothes into the chute that would take them away to be cleaned and walked into his bathroom and into his shower. :: ((Short time jump - Bathroom)) :: Tal turned off his shower feeling refreshed and noticeably cleaner. As he opened the door he spotted his tiny friend standing on the counter beside his sink, looking at himself in the mirror. For a moment he paused, simply watching him, his actions and reactions. Again Tal wondered why he had not beamed the small creature back down to Igguden III. It was his home, there he was free to live, to wander amid the tops and branches of the dense equatorial jungle. :: :: Tal gave a small shake of his head as he left his bathroom, content to drip dry. Out in the large empty space that was his quarters he started to walk towards his closet but stopped, turned and walked instead over to where a wall screen could be seen. It stood out against the uneven, tan surface of simulated stone that covered his walls, floor and ceiling. :: :: Once he reached it he taped in his code and checked to see why the light was flashing. He had a message. He was slightly surprised to see who had sent it, surprised and pleased. It had been a while since they had talked, duty and other factors making the time seem to fly between then and now. Without thinking he selected it and activated it. :: :: An image of Sherana appeared on the screen. Her hand was partially blocking the image, as if she was reaching out towards him. Then she lowered her hand and started to speak. Her voice captivated him, thrilled him after not being able to hear it for so long. His antenna twitched and leaned forward so as to drink in every single subtle sound. :: Sherana: =/\= Would you believe if I told you that we were in 1914 and are just back? Of course you would, I wouldn't lie to you. I have not seen any of it, you know the rules for civilian personnel, but I hear it was interesting. :: She paused. :: I have gotten into a fight last night. Because of that ride through some rift, we didn't have much energy and life support was pulled down. My plants were freezing and I went to demand power. The woman I spoke with did not like that and we got into a brawl. Now I have to apologize to her. =/\= :: A this last part a ghost of a smile drifted across Tal’s features. She had growled the last words, her feeling plain in regards to what had happened. :: Sherana: =/\= She will have to as well, but that does not change my dislike. :: She exhaled. :: She was no substitute for you anyway. Even our training was more challenging than this. I ... :: Tal felt a sudden wave of concern as Sherana’s voice broke. He found himself worrying about her, concerned about her even as she inhaled deeply before she continued to speak. :: You know that I am not good when it comes to talking about emotions. :: There was another slight pause as she raised her eyes to look directly into the camera lens. :: tIqwIj Sa'angnIS.* I miss you, Tal. =/\= *((OOC Translation: I must show you my heart)) :: That was the end of the transmission. :: :: Tal stood there for a moment, then reached up and hit replay, watching the short video two or three more times, memorizing again every single subtle aspect of her features, movements and mannerisms. Only then did he activate the record button himself. :: Tel-ar: =/\= Hello Sherana. It is nice to hear from you. =/\= :: Even as he said it he winced inside. He could just hear his best friend Jason chuckle and shake his head before saying, “How many times do I have to tell you Tal, the best way to win a woman’s heart is to let her know yours.” He reached up and stopped the recording, erased it and started over. :: Tel-ar: =/\= Hello Sherana. I miss you as well. =/\= :: This time there was no inner chuckle and he continued. :: =/\= In fact I was reminded of you on my last mission. We ran into a Klingon Bird of Prey with a renegade crew. They destroyed a Federation colony and then the planet as well. =/\= :: Just then a loud metallic clangor made him turn and look towards where his bed was. He could see that his Bat’leth had been knocked off of the wall and it was pretty obvious who had done it. The sight of it laying there caused him to close his eyes for a moment. When he opened them he looked back and erased the recording. What was he thinking, telling her that running into some renegade Klingons had made him think of her. :: :: Tal paused, taking a few long deep breaths before he restarted the recording again. :: Tel-ar: =/\= Hello Sherana. I miss you as well. I just came back from a week off. I visited a nearby planet Igguden III. It is mostly deserted but pleasant, tropical with a large fresh water lake buried within dense jungle. It reminded me of that time we spent together on my shore leave, us walking along the beach, enjoying the warm waters, our hotel room with the amazing view. :: Tal paused for a moment before continuing. :: It was just me roughing it…. Camping out in the upper branches of one of the bigger trees…. Still I wish you could have been there with me… in my arms… waking beside me…. I miss you… I need you… =/\= :: Suddenly Tal reached out and turned off the recording even as he blinked his eyes rapidly a number of times. What was wrong with him? Tal closed his eyes and took a few deep breathes. When he was done he restarted the recording. :: Tel-ar: =/\= I do not know how to explain just what you mean to me…. Other than you are important… that I think of you often… that you haunt my memories… pleasant memories… some of the best I have… that I do miss you… :: Tal paused, and for a moment a brief smile softened his otherwise stern features, his steel gray eyes seemed to mellow and his voice softened, grew a bit more husky with hidden emotion as he finished speaking. :: I miss holding you… being with you…. I miss it all…. :: Again Tal paused as he stared deep into the screen. :: Bye my heart, until we meet again. =/\= :: Then Tal stopped the recording and programmed the computer to send the message to her on the USS Constitution-B. :: :: When he was finished he turned and walked over to where the Bat’leth lay, picked it up and returned it to its spot on the wall before he turned and looked at where his small friend crouched atop the rounded head of a bronze mace. :: Tel-ar: I guess I am going to have to provide you with some form of amusement, otherwise you are likely to either kill yourself, chop your tail off or even worse damage one of my toys with your activities. :: The small creature grinned, then leapt the 14 feet easily to land on his bare shoulder, tail and hands ensuring that he did not fall off as Tal turned to walk back over to the monitor. This time when he activated it, it was for internal communication. :: Tel-ar: =/\= Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar to Engineering. =/\= Engineer: =/\= Yes Cmdr. How can I help you. =/\= Tel-ar: =/\= I will be submitting a work request for my quarters. I need the alterations to be completed before the end of the alpha shift. =/\= Engineer: =/\= I cannot guarantee that Cmdr. It will depend a lot on the nature of the work you need done. =/\= Tel-ar: =/\= I see. :: Tal paused for a moment then he continued to speak. :: You should be able to see the creature on my shoulder Ensign. =/\= Engineer: =/\= Yes Cmdr. I can. =/\= Tel-ar: =/\= Good the alterations are to provide him with a living space and recreational facilities with in my quarters. I doubt that it will be a very difficult or time consuming job. =/\= Engineer: =/\= No, I doubt it will be. I will get started on it as soon as I receive the details of your request Cmdr. =/\= Tel-ar: =/\= Thank you. I will send them within the hour. Tel-ar out. =/\= :: Tal closed the channel and turned to walk over to the closet. He still needed to get dressed. :: ************************************ Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar Chief Tactical Officer USS Doyle-A, NCC-80221-A darylpea[...]@hotmail.com Daryl.Pea[...]@ontario.ca Tal Tel-ar’s Writer’s ID: T237708TT0 With help from Cmdr. Jalana Rajel, the writer for PNPC Sherana from the USS Constitution-B Jalana Rajel
  7. Love the layout and the look. Obviously it is still a work under construction as it does not have the Gorn, Tholian, Dominion, Breen, etc on the list. I could probably think of another 5 to 10 that might need to be added as well. Other than that this is something that we have needed for a very long time. It will serve not only as an excellent resource for the entire fleet but to further improve on what is already a very useful and wide ranging wiki.
  8. I know from working on the ILI entries for the Remans and a few other Romulan related species that in conjuncture with the big event that occurred here in our Starbase 118 universe those post apocalyptic (Hobus Star System being destroyed) species had become part of a massive splintering of the Romulan Star Empire with different factions holding, controlling and fighting between themselves as part of a massive civil war type event. From conversations with other members of the fleet this seems to have changed since then with open conflict being replaced mostly with tense armed truces and established zones of control. What I still have not been able to determine is how many factions resulted, how big each one is, (worlds, ships, navy, etc.) and which ones survived the chaos following the Hobus disaster.
  9. ((In a shuttle in space attacking a Borg cube)) :: Tal adjusted his flight path. As he had expected the Borg had not fired on him so their seemed to be little point in his continuing to tax the shuttles maneuvering systems when the enemy seemed to be ignoring him. :: :: Tal doubled checked the distance from him to the shield that was protecting the Borg cube. Soon very soon in fact at the speed he was travelling so he reached over, tapped a couple controls and brought up the next song. Just hearing it brought back memories of that beach front tavern that Jason had always been dragging him to back at the Academy. After every beach volleyball game they would relax with a few drinks and enjoy the ancient music that the tavern was famous for. In all honesty it had been the only reason Tal had always joined Jason there afterwards. :: :: Good memories. Maybe his last if this stunt failed. He aimed the shuttle right at the center of the Borg shield, waited a few moments and then pressed the firing button for the shuttles phasor, holding it down as he felt a big smile appear on his face. Sometimes the universe did have a sense of humour he thought as he listened to the music. :: Music (Pat Benatar): =/\= Hit me with your best shot and fire away =/\= :: Tal held the firing button down, a continuous stream of energy leaping forward from the phasor emitter to strike the center of the massive Borg shield. Nothing happened! :: :: Time seemed to slow down as his shuttle continued to hurtle towards certain doom. As it did Tal had the absurd thought that in a few moments the 2 female Marine pilots would get a very graphic demonstration of just what happens when a bug hits a windshield. :: :: For a moment he almost pulled up, but he ignored the momentary twinge of illogical nerves. Even when the red light started to flash warning him that the phasor was about to malfunction. This had to work and if not then the USS Apollo was doomed. It had about as much chance of surviving an attack by 2 Borg cubes as it did of flying through the heart of a star. :: :: A loud annoying beeping sound started as the red light went from flashing to solid. The phasor beam fluttered in and out, then died as Tal glanced down at the console in front of him to see what the scanners were detecting. Borg shield was down to 9% but the power level was starting to climb back up as. :: KER, BLOOWEY, CRASH, !!!!!!!!!!!! :: The shuttle slammed into the Borg shield doing warp 6, the Borg cube was traveling at warp 8.5. As expected the Borg shield won the match, but not by much. The shuttle broke through but the front half was totally destroyed, the metal compacted, twisted, smashed beyond repair. :: :: Its speed was greatly reduced, a large portion of its left warp nacelle was gone, ripped off in the impact and its limited atmosphere was vented out into space from multiple holes, fractures and through the shattered forward viewport. :: :: What was left of the right nacelle was barely producing any propulsion and that was giving it the credit of the doubt. For the most part the shuttle just drifted towards the Borg cube, moving more and more towards the one side as it did so. :: :: Bells were ringing, weird flippant bells that were giving Tal a massive headache. He tried to open his eyes, something did not feel right. Where was he? :: :: Somehow Tal managed to force his left eye open, he was face down on what he thought was the floor, something tugged at his waist and left leg, slowly growing weaker as it did so. He pushed, feeling weak, his arms did not want to respond. It made no sense but he knew he had to move why??? :: :: Forget why just do it he thought, pushing, feeling a massive wave of nausea sweep over him. One that had him puking in seconds. His head pounded, it was hard to think and for some reason the puke stayed floating in front of his face. :: :: He managed to roll onto his side, his vision blocked, blurred by the puke. Why was he wearing a helmet? He had to remember, it was important. He tried to shake his head to clear his mind but that only made it worse. He felt weightless, was he in space? :: :: He reached up to wipe his face, his hand stopped by the visor, visor? He was wearing a helmet. Why was he wearing a helmet? Nothing made any sense. He needed to see, he fumbled for the lock device at his neck, his hands clumsy, lacking control, feeling his way by memory more than anything else. :: :: He heard the click, the release and started to pull the helmet off. The puke, air, everything in the helmet was violently sucked out replaced by a cold so deep, so frigid that it instantly made his teeth chatter. It was like dunking his head in the arctic ocean, even the moisture in his eyes started to freeze. Without thinking he pulled the helmet back on, flipping the lock, wondering why he had been taking off his helmet in the first place. :: :: As the helmet refilled with oxygen his mind cleared enough for him to remember. He was in a shuttle; he had collided with the Borg shield. Somehow he had survived. Was he inside or outside of that shield? He had to find out and he had to do so now. As he thought about it he realized that he had to be inside the shield. At the angle he had been approaching if he had not been able to punch through the shield the entire shuttle would have been destroyed. As it was it must have been a close thing. :: :: Still he had to be inside the Borg shields and he still had a mission to complete so Tal tried twisting around until he was able to see that the shuttle was a complete write off. The [...]pit and all the controls were destroyed and there were numerous holes in what remained of the shuttles outer hull. His left leg partially lodged into one of the bigger holes. He was on the ceiling, rammed right up against the anti-matter warheads which were no longer so safely secured in place. :: :: Obviously the trigger mechanism was destroyed, so was the transporter. It was beginning to look like this whole mission was a complete bust, failure. :: :: He forced himself to sit up. Having to wriggle and squirm as he did so as he had very little space in which to move. It also revealed the fact that his suit had become damaged. Tal reached down to his waist, pulled off the repair kit, removed the small container and pressed it against the damaged section of the suit. It took about half of the sealant but he thought he had fixed the problem. :: :: He hoped so. Now that he was thinking better he needed to assess his chances. See if there was any way he could possibly salvage this mission. Problem was he could not see anything from where he was and what little he could see was destroyed and useless. He had to get outside the shuttle, see what he could see. :: :: Looking around he could see that there was no opening big enough for him to get out. He reached to his waist feeling for his phasor pistol but it was gone. A quick glance around showed that he had no idea where it was. :: :: Now what? He doubted that he had the strength to force an opening in the metal. Not the way he was feeling and he seriously doubted that he could have even if he had been in perfect shape. So how was he going to get out? :: :: Everywhere he looked he saw destruction, everything from the front half of the shuttle was completely destroyed. How he had survived was a puzzle. As far as he could figure the fact that he had removed the backrest from the pilots seat had probably saved his life. Other than that. It was a mystery. However that did not solve his problem. :: :: A sudden wave of nausea washed over him and he had to fight to prevent vomiting again. His mind was not working right, fading in and out. He had to have some internal injuries. It was the only thing that made any sense. He closed his eyes, tried to relax, to slow his breathing, his pulse. :: :: After a few moments he opened his eyes. He still felt like crap but his mind was clearer. Hopefully that would help. It took a few moments for him to realize what he was looking at. There just in front of him was the buckled, shattered, destroyed side hatch, or at least what there was left of it. That was not what had caught his attention. What had were the activation controls for the emergency hatch release. Basically a set of tiny explosive charges designed to blow the hatch off in an emergency. :: :: He reached forward, groping for the activation switch with 2 fingers, reaching, pushing, wriggling his fingers trying to activate, to hit the button. :: BBBOOOMMMBBBBB!!!! :: A sudden explosion blew shrapnel in and out of the shuttle. It also created a massive jagged hole, one that he might be able to fit through if he got lucky. Unfortunately a glancing blow had damaged his visor. Now not only did it have puke residue it was cracked with a fine network tiny spider lines. :: :: Something else was wrong. He glanced down to see a large chunk of metal stickling out of his left leg. His blood was already starting to leak out and float off in tiny little bubbles. :: :: Tal grabbed the chunk of metal but forced himself to stop before he pulled it out. That was a sure fire way to bleed to death. He spotted the canister of repair sealant floating nearby. It looked damaged, probably in the explosion as it had been working perfectly just a while ago. :: :: Tal managed to reach it, pull it closer and inspect it. Pain was starting to flair our from his leg. He had to do this and do it now before he passed out so Tal yanked the metal out and activated the canister. Nothing happened, so he smashed the jagged piece of metal covered in his blood against the top of the device, again and again. Suddenly the top broke off and the contents started to come out under pressure. :: :: Tal stuffed the end into the rip in the suit and felt a hot flash of intense pain as the chemicals in the sealant, sealed off both the wound and the hole in the suit. In reflex to the pain he crushed the canister in his fist, forcing the last of the goo out onto his leg. :: :: Tal had to fight to get his breath back as the waves of pain threatened to wash over him, drowning him in a flood of agony and nerve shattering delirium. Slowly it passed but even before it had Tal started to move, to pull himself forward, swimming through the weightless interior of the craft until he had managed to wriggle out through the hole. :: :: Now he could see. He was close. The towering shape of the Borg cube took up almost all of his vision until he turned to look around. In the distance he could see the USS Apollo, still fighting but even from this distance he could see that it was badly damaged. :: :: This distance. There should have been no way for him to see the USS Apollo. Not just by looking. They were getting closer. This cube was going to the aid of the other one. The Apollo must be winning. Now more than ever he had to trigger the anti-matter. There was no way the Apollo could survive the attack of the 2nd cube. :: :: Looking around Tal spotted the photon torpedo attached to the rear of the shuttle. It had not deployed as it should have, probably because the impact destroyed the controls before they could activate the release. It looked damaged but maybe it still worked. :: :: He forced himself to crawl over the exterior of the shuttle, hand by hand. As he did he could tell the cracks in his visor were getting worse. The residue from him puking was flowing across the interior of the visor to collect along the thin spider web of lines. He had to hurry. No telling how much longer he had and a quick glance up showed they were getting closer to the main battle. He could now see tiny bits of detail on the Apollo. He had to hurry. :: :: He reached out, his hand touching the exterior of the missile. Using it to pull himself closer, examining it as he did. It was damaged, scratched and dented but still seemed to be in one piece. Thats all he needed. :: :: Tal pushed, forcing it to move, feeling the pain ripple through him. He definitely had internal injuries. He was going to fail, the Borg were going to win, to assimilate him :: :: NEVER. Rage ripped through him, the pain serving as fuel. He would die before letting those [...] parasites get their hands on him He pushed, ignoring the pain, ignoring the weird sensations inside him, pushed with all he had, like his life depended on it. :: :: The torpedo shifted, altered its angle. Not as much as he wanted but enough that his idea should work. He had to rest for a moment, breathing deeply as black spots danced in front of his eyes. He was going to pass out. He could feel it. He fought it, desperate to stay conscious. His hands fumbling with the torpedo, snagging the damaged side panel, ripping it open so he could activate it. :: :: Nothing happened, the torpedo just lay there. The Borg would win after all. Tal glanced up to see the Apollo take a massive hit, one that seemed to do more damage than it could take but the edge of the Borg cube blocked out the details, preventing him from telling just how bad the damage was. :: :: In a fit of rage Tal kicked the torpedo, again and again. The sudden activation of its engines ripped him free from the outer hull of the shuttle as it started to pick up speed, being pushed haphazardly towards the center of the massive cube that towered over him. :: :: He had to get away. Now that his mission was completed he had to escape. He reached down, feeling for the controls for the propulsion unit. His fingers felt weird and the black spots were back, dancing a weird hula dance before his eyes. :: :: The controls had to be there. He could feel the propulsion unit still on his back so he kept fumbling at his waist. He could barely breathe. That didnt make sense. He had a 4 hour supply. He must have lost more oxygen than he thought that or he was losing some now. Who knew how many holes there were in his suit. :: :: Suddenly the Borg cube seemed to drift away from him. He must have hit the controls it was nice out here so peaceful. The stars were fading everything was fading for some reason his mind drifted back to the music he had given the Borg his best shot. :: ********************************************* ((Bridge, Borg Cube #845325-458724, the 2nd cube)) Borg 1: Federation shuttle on a collision course with forward shield. Borg 3: It has dropped evasive maneuvers and is now firing its phasor. Borg 2: Illogical. Borg 1: Sound being broadcast from the shuttle has been altered, still defies computers ability to decipher. Borg 3: Forward shield weakening. Down to 63% Borg 1: Shuttles phasor is weakening. Power output decreasing by 8.6359% every 2 seconds. Borg 2: Ignore it. Borg 3: Forward shield is down to 36% Borg 2: Computer still has not been able to decipher any code to the signal being broadcast by the Federation shuttle. Borg 3: Stop attempting to decipher. Signal must be the actions of an illogical biological unit. Borg 2: It will be assimilated. Borg 3: Shuttles phasor has malfunctioned. Shuttle is going to crash. Borg 2: Shuttle has impacted the forward shield. Borg 1: Shuttle has managed to break through forward shield. Borg 3: Shall I target it? Borg 2: No point. Scans show that it has suffered extensive damage. Multiple hull breaches, engine failure, systems failure, loss of power, noise has stopped. Borg 3: What about the Federation stealth fighters? Borg 2: Ignore them. Borg 1: 1 life sign detected. Borg 2: Where? Borg 3: Exterior of the damaged shuttle. Borg 1: Life signs are erratic. Biological unit is damaged. Borg 2: It does not matter. They will be assimilated. Borg 3: Attempting to lock on transporters. Borg 2: Unusual levels of anti-matter detected on damaged shuttle. Borg 3: Anti-matter interfering with ability to get a lock on the biological unit. Borg 2: Borg Cube #674296-562317 sustaining damage. Borg 1: Damage in excess of that expected from a single Federation Achilles class vessel. Borg 2: Alter course to intercept Federation vessel. Borg 3: Course altered. Borg 1: Damaged shuttle is moving. Borg 2: How? Its engines are destroyed, it lacks power. Borg 3: It is being pushed by the propulsion engine of a single photon torpedo. Borg 2: Illogical. Borg 1: Biological unit is now floating, correction being pushed by a small EVA propulsion unit away from the shuttle. Borg 2: Establish a lock on the biological unit. Borg 3: Attempting. Borg 1: Federation vessel, USS Apollo has taken extensive damage. Borg 2: It does not matter. They will be assimilated. Borg 3: Shuttles anti-matter signature is still blocking our ability to get a lock with the transporters on the biological unit. Borg 2: Source of unusual high levels of anti-matter? Borg 3: Damaged federation shuttle. Cargo hold is full of anti-matter. Borg 2: Establish a tractor lock on the shuttle. Push it away, now. Borg 1: Tractor lock failed. Anti-matter leak interfering with ability to lock on. Borg 2: Target the shuttle. Destroy it. Borg 3: Doing so will cause extensive damage to the cube. Borg 1: Shuttle has impacted with the forward shield emitter. Shields failing. Borg 2: Switch to back up generators. Borg 3: Emergency repair team dispatched. Borg 2: Biological unit has been beamed away. Borg 1: How? Borg 2: Federation stealth fighter must have taken advantage of our downed shields. Borg 3: Anti-matter leak did not interfere with their ability to get a lock on. Borg 1: Life signs were very erratic and fading. Borg 2: It does not matter. They will be assimilated. Borg 3: Teams dispatched to deal with damaged shuttle. Borg 2: Anti-matter must be dealt with. Borg 3: Anti-matter leak increasing. Borg 2: Establish a containment shield around the shuttle. Borg 1: Maximum power to the containment shield. Borg 2: Anti-matter leak interfering with ability to establish containment shield. Borg 3: Increase size of containment shield. Borg 1: Containment shield established. Borg 2: Anti-matter explosion BOOM!!!! :: Blinding flash of white mixed with splashes of other color. Shrapnel flying everywhere. Borg cube reduced to component parts. Appears to be destroyed. ::
  10. I will be there. I go every year on the Sunday. Looking forward to getting a few autographs to add to my collection...
  11. ((Maintenance shaft 43-A, USS Apollo)) :: Por'kus grunted as he forced his stocky frame to slide another 5 inches deeper into the bowels of the ship. He should have just used the transporter, it would have been quicker and he would not have had to wriggle along like some kind of bug. :: :: He paused, sweat running into his face messing with his vision. Unfortunately he was so cramped that he could not do anything about it. When had these maintenance shafts gotten so small? He could remember how easy it had been to squirm through them when he was back on the USS Tokyo. :: :: Sure that was over 5 years ago but still. He had not put on that much weight had he? :: :: With another grunt he pulled himself even deeper into the ship. Then tried to do it again. For some reason he could not budge. Try as he might he could not move. Even when he tried to push himself back he could not. He was stuck. :: :: Next he tried to reach his communication badge but it was wedged between his chest and the side of the shaft. There was not enough room for him to try and reach it with his hand. With his arms over his head like they were he could not bend them in any way that would be helpful. :: :: After almost 10 minutes of intense effort that succeeding in doing nothing other than making him sweat like a fat man in a sauna Por'kus finally gave up and started to yell for help. :: Por'kus: HEELLLPPPP!!!!! :: He yelled at the top of his lungs. Then he waited a few minutes before he did it again. :: :: After a while he heard a faint reply. :: ((Corridor, USS Apollo)) :: Loleh's shift had ended and she walked along the corridors reading a fascinating article on Quantum Physics and Time Travel. It was not unusual for her to wander the corridors while she read. Many times she would finish reading and find herself on a completely different deck with no sense of how much time had passed. This time, however to stopped when she heard a faint sound that seemed to resemble a cry for help. Her pointed ears honed in on the sound and she followed it every time she heard the yell. Eventually she found herself at the hatch of a maintenance shaft, which seemed rather peculiar. :: Loleh: ::Leaning into the shaft:: Hello? Por'kus: Hello... Loleh: ::a little louder:: Hello, I am Lieutenant jg Loleh Rejock. Do you require assistance? Por'kus: Of course I need assistance. I wouldn't be yelling for help if I didn't. :: He snapped at her. :: Loleh: oO No need for an attitude... Oo What seems to be the problem? Por'kus: I'm wedged in. Loleh: hmm.. :: her brain began analyzing the situation. :: Can you clarify what you mean by wedged in? Por'kus: STUCK!! As in I can't move. Loleh: I see. And how long have you been stuck up there? Por'kus: I don't know... about 2 hours I think... Loleh: 2 hours?! :: she found herself amused at the situation and took out her tricorder to scan what was trapping him. :: Por'kus: Just get me out... Loleh: I am working on it. :: Worst case scenario, she could input the coordinated in the transporter and beam him out, however the thought of using a transporter made her shudder. Besides, it took more skill to calculate the best way to move the pieces to free him. She climbed into the shaft and started making her way toward the stuck voice. :: ((In the Maintenance Shaft)) Por'kus: Hurry it up... I need to [...] like mad... Loleh: [...]... I am not familiar with that terminology. What does it mean? :: She continued towards him. :: Por'kus: [...]!!! Take a leak... Urinate.... Loleh: There is no need to get agitated. I am, after all, helping you... unless of course you would like me to leave you here? :: She desperately hoped that she outranked this mystery person after talking to him the way she had. :: Por'kus: Agitated... leave me here... are you nuts... I'm sweating like crazy, stiff, sore and now I need to [...] and you want to leave me here?? Loleh: Very well, I will leave you here then. ::She turned back:: Por'kus: Get back here. Of course I want help. I don't plan to spend the rest of my life here. Loleh: :: Smiling :: That is much better. Now. I am almost to you and I will be able to calculate the direction and force to which we will need to move you to break free. Por'kus: Good luck. I've tried everything and not been able to budge myself even a tiny bit. Loleh: Would you please trust me? Por'kus: Trust you... better yet just get me out of here... :: She saw his legs and knew she had a challenge ahead of her. She first theorized that the heat in the shaft must have caused the man to swell and make his size too large for the given space. :: Loleh: How did you get here if you do not fit? Por'kus: Are you trying to say I'm fat? Loleh: I am saying that your size is greater than the circumference of the shaft. Por'kus: I'm just big boned. Besides I managed to get this far... then I got stuck... Loleh: Interesting.. :: She began reaching up to get a feel of the situation. :: Por'kus: The shaft must be smaller here... :: As he said it he could feel her hand slid up his leg towards his waist. :: Loleh: Has the shaft always been this small to you? :: She started feeling around the man to see if his uniform had caught on anything. :: Por'kus: OK.... So maybe I am a little larger than I use to be... what has that to do with getting me out? :: Now he could feel her hand checking to make sure he was not caught on anything. :: Loleh: I am merely pointing out that if you lost some weight, this would no longer be a problem and you could do your job better. :: She took another step up and worked her way around his waist. oO I should have ignored his cry for help.. I could be reading right now! Oo :: Por'kus: I do not need to diet... they need to make these #$%^&* shafts all the same size. :: Somehow she had managed to work around his legs and was now checking his other side. Unfortunately her hand was ticklish as hell and he was not sure how much longer he could stifle the giggles. :: Loleh: I am certain that there is a logical explanation for the size of the shaft. And you would be much healthier if you dropped a few pounds. Por'kus: Ha..ha..ha.. ha.. ha.. Loleh: :: She looked at the man, quite confused. :: I hardly see what is so funny about this situation. Por'kus: I don't find this funny... your tickling me. Loleh: Well stop moving. I can't see up there so I have to feel out if you are caught on something.. I'm just.. about.. finished.. :: She started sliding her hand back towards her. :: Por'kus: Whhooo... watch the hand lady... I don't know you that well... Loleh: :: blushing :: My apologies. Now you are not caught on anything so I will just have to unlodge you myself. Por'kus: Just watch what you push... Last thing I want to do is have to call my mommy and tell her you took my virginity... Now do you really think you can get me free?? Loleh: Uh, sure I can! :: She was thankful he couldn't see how slender she was. She was hardly strong.. she was a scientist, not a security officer. She defeated things with her mind, not biceps.. :: Por'kus: You don't sound too sure... you're not some 85 pound bookworm science geek are you? Nah... the gods couldn't hate me that much... Loleh: What other options do you see? Por'kus: : Well I could hang around while you run and get me about 2 dozen burgers and a couple shakes... or risk getting a rather abrupt proctology examine... go ahead give it your best... Loleh: Okay then, here goes nothing. :: She wrapped her arms around his legs, using one leg to brace herself on the sides of the shaft. She began pulling on the stuck man with no luck, when his comm badge chirped. :: Knight: =/\= Bridge to Crewman Por'kus. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= What?? =/\= Knight: =/\= I need you to go over to the Rigek. They have some systems that could use your tiny fingers on. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= Now! Are you kidding. I'm stuck right in the middle of a very tricky removal problem. =/\= Knight: =/\= Well get your chubby little self unstuck! We need you over there in ten minutes and we do not have time for you to take a little vacation...have you been eating those apple fritters again? =/\= :: She enjoyed talking with him. Sometimes it gave her a chance to be as rude as she wanted to be from time to time, and someone like Por'kus expected it. She could get away with talking to him different from others. She did not always do so, instead, sometimes she was overly nice to him. It was fun to watch him squirm. :: Por'kus: =/\= You have got to be kidding. Take my advice give up cooking and stick to your day job. Those things tasted like used underwear. Yeuucckk. =/\= ((Corridor)) :: Sherana was heading back to the Arboretum when the Orion botanist noticed the hatch to one of the ships maintenance tubes was open. She could hear weird noises echoing from inside. They sounded like sick animals or someone being crushed while carrying an enormous weight, one that was way too much for them. :: :: She walked closer and just when she peeked inside she heard a loud voice of a woman echo down to her. :: Loleh: STOP FIDGETING! :: She continued pulling. :: :: Sherana straightened up again as the words flew into her face, just when a male gruff voice followed. :: Por'kus: I'm not fidgeting... your touching my manhood... by the way what are you doing later? Just thought I would ask as you now know me better than my last girlfriend... now stop playing and start PUSHING... :: The Orion's eyebrows rose. What in Kahless' name where those people doing in that tube? :: Loleh: Well can you try sucking in your stomach or something? :: Loleh looked at the man with disgust. She was starting to want to use the transporter.. despite her phobia she wouldn't mind the risks it brought if used on him. :: Knight: =/\= Is everything okay, Por'kus? =/\= :: A large smiled formed on her face. It was funny listening to the banter back and forth. She was not sure if it was the funnier part, or the fact that he was stuck in the first place. She thought of just beaming him out of there, which would take a few seconds. Instead, since he didn't think of it...she wouldn't bring it up until she had to. Instead, she chose to deal with a few minutes of comic relief from the little Tellarite. Of course, perhaps little was not the best descriptive for the man. :: Por'kus: Again with the fat jokes... I'll give it a try... :: He tried to talk low enough that his helper could hear him but the comms badge did not. A foolish try as he knew the badge would pick up everything. :: =/\= Just my assistant getting a little fresh... nothing to worry about. =/\= :: Loleh continued her futile attempts. There was no physical way for her to pull him out. The math did not work! :: Knight: :: He sounded like he was calming down, and she could not have that. He was much more comical when he was agitated. It was interesting listening to the man squirm, she almost wanted to head down and see it for herself. ::=/\= How long do you think it will be until you are out of there? =/\= Por'kus: =/\= I don't know... as soon as possible. =/\= It's not working, try harder. :: He hissed under his breath as he tried to suck it in even more. :: Loleh: :: grunting :: I'm doing the best I can! It's not my fault you're so big! :: She wasn't normally so rude, but it was the only way to talk to this Porky guy. :: :: This was really too strange, it sounded a lot like they enjoyed their time with each other in this tube, though when it came to that Sherana liked it less talky and more growly. Though she understood when other people liked it differently. But why here and in that way? :: :: She peeked her head back into the tube and cleared her throat. :: Sherana: You might want to close the hatch if you want to copulate, everyone outside can hear you. Por'kus: What did she say? :: He was not sure what the strange female voice had said. :: Loleh: :: holding back the urge to vomit at the thought. :: She thinks we are copulating. Apparently everyone can hear us! :: turning down to the newest member of the party. :: I assure you, we are NOT copulating. Knight: =/\= You seem to be taking your time, Por'kus. Are you enjoying yourself? =/\ :: She figured the jab would get him riled up a bit more. Enjoyment was not among the top things the man was capable of. The fact that he was stuck was probably rough for him. He needed to swallow his pig-headed pride and get help. Now she was doing what she could to keep the fire going. :: Por'kus: =/\= Whoooaaa, I'm just stuck... no need to start throwing around unfounded accusations, heck I still have my pants on for goodness sake. =/\= Sherana: ::raising her voice so he could hear her:: That is beneficial. The friction of the fabric is less than that of skin and will help to get unstuck better than if you have lost them already. Loleh: That is true. Also, I would not be helping if your pants were not on. Knight: =/\= Do we need to send reinforcements? Perhaps replicate some lubricant of some sort? =/\= Por'kus: =/\= Look just get your shapely butt up here and give her a hand, either that or keep your comments to yourself. =/\= :: She could not help but laugh again. Of all the things she was told about her rear end, shapely was not something she heard before. She had no intention of actually going down there to help him pull himself out of the tube. Instead, she would keep laughing until she dangled the thought of beaming him out of there. :: Sherana: My... butt is not shapely. :: At least she never had seen it that way, though others might disagree. The Orion shook her head and sighed. Apparently whoever the woman with him was did not really get him out of it, so she could need a helping hand. Sherana put her things down and climbed into the tube. Though seeing the whole thing from closer made it pretty clear that they could not do much with squeezing in and getting stuck themselves. :: There must be another way to do this without getting wedged in as well. Loleh: If you could get on the other side of the maintenance shaft, you could push while I pull, I suppose. Or we could tie something around him and pull from the corridor? Knight: =/\= Who is that helping to pull our stout little figure out of the hole that you managed to cram yourself into? =/\= Por'kus: =/\= How should I know. I can't see who they are... =/\= Loleh: I told you, I am Lt. jg Loleh Rejock ::rolling her eyes:: Perhaps you should try listening. Sherana: You could ask. ::Looking to Loleh:: I'll check if I can find something to bind around him, so we can pull without getting stuck ourselves. ::With that she crawled backwards again.:: Knight: =/\= Is any progress being made down there? =/\= Por'kus: =/\= I don't know they're too busy playing with my manhood it seems like. =/\= :: She laughed to herself once more. If Tellarite anatomy was consistent, the third leg was even shorter and stubbier than he was. She doubted that either of the women helping him would tell it was even there. Of course there were some things that were to cruel for her to say, even to a Tellarite. :: Loleh: Oh bother! Anatomy is NOT my field of interest... :: She looked at Sherana, shaking her head in disgust. :: Sherana: I'm not playing with anything, you are not my type. Knight: =/\= Trust me Por'kus, I am pretty sure that they are not enjoying it at all. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= If that's true then I should be the one pressing charges for sexual assault... either that or I own them a few bars of latnium for the good time. =/\= Loleh: I assure you there is nothing sexual about this... :: Sherana shook her head. Seeing the figure and hearing that voice, the tone of voice, she had a good idea what species that man belonged too. She had met the one or other, though did not really have a problem with it. Who was raised and trained among Klingons was pretty much used to that kind of talk. Sherana hit the ground again, only half listening to further conversations inside. :: Sherana: ::shouting into the tube:: If you keep complaining, we'll just leave you in that shaft. Knight: =/\= Well payment would be a good compensation, along with the years of counselling they will both have to endure after this little adventure. =/\= Loleh: That's an understatement! Por'kus: =/\= Ha, ha, ha. You're a regular comedian Lt. =/\= Knight: =/\= So...how much longer should I let you try to get unstuck byyourself before just having the transporter room beam you out of there? =/\= :: She listened to the moment of silence when it finally clicked for everyone. In that moment she felt just as cruel as the tube holding his chubby little body in place. She could have shared the solution at the start of the conversation, but with a few minutes to kill it was better to wait. :: :: Loleh kept quiet for a moment. This Knight person had a good head on her shoulders. oO I need to get out more and meet these people! Oo :: Loleh: I was hoping to avoid that... Por'kus: =/\= Avoid it... oh no you're not one of them are you? Listen Lt. Do it. Get me out of here. =/\= Knight: :: letting out a laugh. :: =/\= I could have done it minutes ago, but this is pretty funny stuff. It is like watching a holo-comedy, but I am stuck listening to it instead. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= Oh I'm so glad that you were enjoying it. My day is not complete unless I have brought a smile to your face. Now get me out of here. This is uncomfortable as heck. =/\= Loleh: Well it wasn't pleasant for me either! Por'kus: =/\= Who cares. At least you can climb out on your own. Now if you ladies can stop your gossip fest maybe you can get with the program. Remember I'm still stuck here. =/\= Knight: =/\= I will relay your situation and have them beam you to the nearest corridor. =/\= Loleh: Listen, if you are going to beam out of here, I am leaving. I don't want to be anywhere near that.. Por'kus: I knew it. You are one of them. What makes you wakoos tick. How can anyone in this day and age be so weirded out by simple science? Loleh: I just prefer keeping my molecules together, just the way they are. I'm a physicist, not a matter stream! :: She began climbing back down towards the hatch. :: Por'kus: A scientist??? You're a scientist!!! Well that explains the inexperienced hand massage. :: He should have known. An engineer would have gotten him out in no time. :: Knight: =/\= Just keep your shirt on...they will get you of there in a few seconds. :: snickering :: Bridge out. =/\= Loleh: It's ok. I understand you're lashing out at me. You are intimidated by a female who is smarter than you. Por'kus: Nah, I can handle that. After all I'm an engineer, we actually do things. :: Something about this woman just rubbed him the wrong way and it had nothing to do with her actual hands. Those had felt pretty good even if she had no idea what she was doing. No. It was something else. :: Loleh: The more you deny it, the more I know it is true.. :: She continued climbing down. :: Por'kus: It's not women that bother me. I like women it's egg head scientists I have a problem with. Scientists, think things up and then come to us engineers to make them work. Remember that. :: That was it. She had to be an officer. It was not bad enough that she was a scientist but he was sure of it now. She just had to be an officer as well. :: Loleh: Keep telling yourself that, big man. I'm out of here! Por'kus: Good. We would not want you to be scared of a simple matter stream. They would probably make me clean up the puddle. :: He heard her grunt of disgust and felt pretty good with himself. Best [...] day he had, had in a while other than getting stuck. It wasn't that often that he could let loose and grumble and complain with-out getting into trouble. Last good chance he had, had was back on Starbase 118 in that Tellarite diner. :: :: Just then he felt the familiar tingle as his body was broken down into it's individual molecules and transported elsewhere on the ship. :: ((Main Engineering, USS Apollo)) :: Por'kus materialized in main engineering. A few seconds later his tool kit appeared as well but he did not see it as the second he had fully materialized he made a mad dash for the bathroom. :: :: A few moments later he walked back out of the bathroom looking very pleased or at least as pleased as it was possible for him to look. When he saw his tool kit which reminded him of the job awaiting him his face clouded over and got it's normal grumpy look again. :: :: He considered going back into the bathroom and dropping his comms badge down the toilet but knew it would only result in him having to dig through sewage looking for it so instead he activated it and spoke. :: Por'kus: =/\= Crewman 2nd class Por'kus to Lt. Knight. =/\= Knight: =/\= Go ahead. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= Ok. Tell me more about this problem that needs my special attention. =/\= Knight: =/\= All I know is a transporter repair is needed, and anything else they may need done. Check in with Ensigns Kapoor and Pierce when you get there. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= Would that be an older style Cardassian freighter? =/\= Knight: =/\= Yeah, Groumall type. Pretty old indeed. =/\= Por'kus: =/\= Yeah I'm familiar with the problem. Did you send over the replacement parts yet? =/\= :: As he asked it he picked up his tool kit, opened it to make sure nothing was missing. :: Knight: =/\= All spare parts and supplies have been sent over, we just have a man power shortage. =/\= Por'kus: =/\=Ok. Ok. I understand. Beam me over and I'll get to work. =/\= Knight: =/\= Getting a lock now...happy repairs! Knight out. =/\= :: He stood calmly waiting to be beamed over. Then it dawned on him that he had not eaten yet and just as he was about to talk, to let Lt. Knight know he wanted to eat first the transported effect dissolved him into a couple million particles and deposited him on the aged freighter. :: ((Cargo Hold of The Rigek, Oribitting Quatal Minor)) :: Por'kus materialized inside what was obviously a working freighter. It had about a thousand years worth of smells, age and rust everywhere and it took him a moment to adjust. In some ways it felt a little like coming home. :: ************************************************ This sim brought to you by PNPC - Crewman 3rd class Por'kus a Tellarite Engineer With the help of the following PNPC - Lt. jg. Loleh Rejock a Al-Leyan Scientist PNPC - Lt. jg. Susan Knoght a Human Engineer PNPC - Civilian Sherana Caelin a Orion Botanist
  12. ((USS Apollo, Sickbay, Now)) The room was packed with wall to wall casualties intermixed with medics rushing to save as many as they could. The sound was unbelievable. A wild mix of yells, shouted orders cries and moans of pain. A truly chaotic mess with no end in sight. One where everyone was stressed, struggling with the enormity of the situation. So it was no wonder that some of the worse cases had been shuffled to the back out of the way. Ones that nothing more could be done for. Like the young female Andorian Lt. jg. that had been recovered from the USS Nelson. She was alive, her vital statistics were close to stable but she was completely 100% brain dead. Just another of those hopeless cases that could be forgotten about until the more immediate needs of the other patients had been dealt with. Right next to her was another Andorian. This one was different. He was tall, so tall that his feet hung out past the end of the bed but that was not the only difference. Where her face had relaxed into a calm relaxed pose that resembled sleep his face was a rigid mask that could have been carved from stone. Between that and his massive physical structure he still possessed a faint air of grim determination. Like the female he was unconscious with no visible injuries or damage. Unlike the female he still had brain activity, unfortunately his was erratic. Something about the strange alien creature they had encountered was affecting him in ways they could not understand. So for now he rested alone near the back. Hooked up to various monitors, ones that normally would be heard and responded to, but that were ignored due to the cries, moans and yells of frantic patients, doctors and nurses pushed to the brink. Fighting to live, save another life or prolong the inevitable as long as possible. Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar was completely oblivious to all of this. To the conditions around him, the female beside him. Even to the fact that he was here, shuffled out of the way. His mind adrift in a sea of confusion, lost amid the shattered memories that had once been his life. ((Ten-nok VII, 23 years ago)) Tal reached up and wiped the blood from his face. His steel gray eyes watching carefully, waiting for the next attack. There were 3 of them. All older students here in the military training barracks. They eyed him with disgust, mocking expressions on their faces as they prepared to finish what they had started. Short clubs made of carved hard wood, baked under the harsh desert sun until they were as hard as metal clenched in their hands. When they moved, they moved as one. Their training showing in the tactics that they used to ensure he had no way to escape. Unfortunately for them Tal had no intention of running. He curled into a lose ball, seemingly scared as if he hoped to protect his vital regions by doing so. It was a ruse, one that worked. At least long enough that he was able to kick out with all his strength. His heel connected with the soft tissue associated with most species male reproductive organs. Tal never stopped moving. He followed it up by rolling to his left and using a leg sweep to take the feet out from under that attacker. Even then he never stopped moving, he continued to roll and only stopped when he slammed into the fallen body of the lad he had knocked down. They grappled with his opponent seeking to use his club while Tal merely reached out and grabbed his head. One swift twist followed by a sudden snap and a last final gasp and Tal let go, pushing himself off and over the now suddenly thrashing body. He was just in time as the edge of one of the clubs just missed his head. It did however slam into the skull of the still thrashing boy shattering his skull. Tal crouched, watching as his last standing opponent started to circle looking for an opening. Behind him in a pool of his own vomit lay the one he had kicked. His body was wracked by twitches and spasms as he continued to moan and gasp. Suddenly his entire body convulsed and he retched throwing up some more. Tal started to shift his body weight when someone kicked him from behind. His opponent took advantage of this and rushed forward club raised ready for use…. ((Ten-nok VII, 26 years ago)) Tal lay on the cool stone of the cave entrance. Outside the blazing sun was slowly starting to set. Hazy heat waves still confused his vision but soon that would change. The temperature would drop and he needed to find some food quickly. He had not eaten in almost 4 days and he could feel his stomach protesting as a result. Fortunately that was his only worry. Deep inside the cave was a small pool of clear water so he never lacked for that. Suddenly he spotted a small shadow low on the horizon. As he watched it slowly came closer. There was something unusual about it. He had never seen anything like it. As he continued to watch he saw that it was really more than one thing approaching. It was a small group of strange looking creatures. They moved in single file, one behind the other. What made them unusual was that they looked faintly like him but instead of blue skin these had dark crimson skin tones and wore strange things on their bodies. He wondered if there was a reason for the strange items even as he continued to watch and wonder what they were…. ((Ten-nok VII, 23 years ago)) Tal slammed the boys head into the stone pillar one last time then let him fall. Even as he did it he moved to put the wall behind him ready for the next attack. His steel gray eyes scanning the other students even as he spotted a small group of their instructors standing off to one side watching. Just then one of them stepped forward. He moved to the center of the room, stepped over one body and then turned to address the crowd. His stern face giving no indication of what he was thinking as he started to explain what Tal had done right and what he had done wrong to win the fight. For Tal it was enough that he had survived, he no longer sought or cared what his instructors thought when it came to him. All that mattered was learning all he could and being prepared for the next sneak attack….. ((Earth, Starfleet Academy, 15 years ago)) Tal walked along the corridor. As he did he scanned the numbers on the doors looking for the one they had told him was his. He found it, about half way down the hall and immediately opened the door and walked in. As he did he heard a strange high pitched shriek. It made his antenna twitch and he turned towards the sound. There on the bed lay 2 people. One was obviously a male. Most likely human as he resembled so many of that unusual species. The other was female with long lavender hair, exotic purple eyes and she seemed to be upset about something as she grabbed for the sheets and quickly covered up her naked body. Tal turned away, his eyes scanning the room. One half was decorated and obviously occupied while the other was bare with only the bed, desk and a closet. He stepped over and dropped his stuff on the bed as he heard movement from behind him. Turning back he was surprised to be confronted by what seemed to be an enraged male almost as tall as himself. The man had long shoulder length blonde hair, blue eyes and a well developed athletes body, one that had seen a lot of sun if the bronze skin tones were any indication. When he spoke he had an unusual accent that seemed to suit him. “Hey, what do you think your doing.” “I was told by student registration that these would be my quarters. I assume that since you are using that bed, that this one is mine.” Tal replied calmly. “That’s not what I meant. Didn’t you see the do not disturb sign on the door.” “No. Did you require privacy?” “Yeah. What the hell did you think I was doing when you barged in?” “I have no idea. Regardless I will not intrude on your activities. You may proceed.” With that Tal turned and reached for the single, small duffle bag that held every thing he owned. Suddenly he was grabbed by the shoulder and Tal spun back faster than expected. He easily blocked the punch and was about to return it when he forced himself not to. He had no idea why this man was so angry but as much as he wanted to pound him, he may have had reason to do as he did. Not for the first time Tal felt totally out of place. As Tal just stood there he noticed the facial expression on the other guy change. He had no idea what that meant, but he did understand the sudden relaxation of his tensed muscles. He was no longer willing to continue their physical disagreement. “You really do not know do you?” “I am not sure I understand the question.” Tal replied. “Ha, ha, you are one weird dude. I think this is going to be one hell of a year.” As he said it Tal let him go and stepped back. “My names Jason Stone, from the sunny beaches of Australia here on Earth and that lovely young lass over there behind me is Risa Tial from Bandora IV.” Tal looked at first one then the other before he responded. Jason had a huge smile on his face while the girl merely gave him a small grin and nodded in response. “I am Tal Tel-ar, I am Andorian from Ten-nok VII.” “Never heard of the place, anyway now that we have been properly introduced could I ask you to go take a very long walk and get acquainted with the grounds.” Jason asked with a grin. “Me and Risa were just discussing various aspects of interspecies bonding and it is probably going to take a while.” Tal looked at first him then the girl before he replied. “As you wish.” Then he gave a slight nod of his head and headed towards the exit….. ((USS Apollo, Sickbay, Now)) A young female nurse paused to examine the data readouts on the monitors and automatically did a reset and diagnostic. When the readouts remained the same she quickly turned and waved her arm to get someone’s attention. It worked and a few seconds later she got a response. “What is it?” “His neural activity is getting more erratic. Dropping close to coma levels with occasional spikes that could indicate synopsis failure.” “Increase the setting on the neural stimulators to 21.86 and give him 85 cc’s of dopamine and 120 cc’s of phloraphine.” “Understood Doctor, anything else?” “Just keep an eye on him and pray.” With that he turned away and hurried over to his next patient…. ((USS Eagle, Tal’s personnel quarters, 6 years ago)) Tal stood in the center of his room. His tall athletic body slowly twisting and turning through a complex series of ancient movements that did not over tax his current physical capabilities. At least he could stand now. For a while he feared he might never walk on his own again. As the thought drifted through his mind he glanced over to where the hover chair he had been confined to for the last year sat waiting in case he might need it again. Doing so momentarily messed up his concentration and he over extended causing a sudden sharp jolt of pain to slam into his spine which nearly caused him to fall over. He caught himself and slowly straightened up. As he did Tal clenched his fists. It was the only outward sign that he was [...]ed. Otherwise he was as he always was, apparently calm and unconcerned. Just then his door chime sounded. For a moment he almost did not recognise the sound. No one ever visited him in his quarters. In fact no one ever spent any time around him off duty and very few spent any time around him on duty. Without a second thought Tal walked over towards the door as he spoke. “Enter.” The door responded to his voice and automatically opened to reveal Ensign Elina Kincaide. She stood there holding his back brace in her hands. She had shoulder length black hair, clear pale skin and for some reason her face suddenly turned beet red. Tal stood there waiting for a moment before he repeated his statement. “You may enter Ensign.” “Ahh…. Thank you sir… “ For some reason she seemed uneasy. She kept looking anywhere but at him and each time her eyes strayed in his direction she seemed to get a little redder. “Is there a problem Ensign?” “Your naked…..” ((Cart’hen III, City of Mith, Police detention cell, 7 years ago)) Tal hung from the ceiling, his feet about a foot off the floor. His clothes lay in a pile near by and he felt a slight chill from the cold damp air. He must be pretty far underground for him to feel like that. Either that or he was in worse condition than he thought. He knew that up above on the surface that it would be 45 to 50 degrees in the shade. A mild day according to the locals. He heard a sound and managed to lift his head. He could only see out of one eye and as he expected it was the same man that had been questioning him for the last few hours. Evidently it was time for some new questions. “You must be feeling a little tired by now. Tell you what. Admit that you’re a hired assassin and I’ll cut you down.” Tal tried to speak, managed to swallow and finally croaked out a reply. “Lt. Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar. Federation Officer, USS Eagle.” He was rewarded with a sudden massive blow to his lower back that sent jolts of pain flashing up and down his body. “Lets try that again @#$%^&*. Admit that you’re a Federation assassin.” Tal fought the waves of pain that threatened to wash over him and spoke again. “I am Lt. Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar. Federation Officer, USS Eagle.” Again he was struck with the yard long steel rod. This time he failed to ride the waves of pain…. ((USS Eagle, Engineering, 6 years ago)) Tal looked up at the current Chief Engineer as he spoke, something that he was slowly getting use to ever since he had been confined to this @#$%^& hover chair. “Lt. Chalmers, I understand that your staff are busy. I only require 1 of them to make the necessary repairs and recalibrate my back brace.” “Look sir. I understand your wanting to be able to get up and walk but the ship took one hell of a pounding. We’re lucky to still have power and we’re trying to keep it that way.” “Lt. I would appreciate it if you could assign someone to repair this device today.” As he said it Tal held up the damaged back brace that he was holding. Lt. Chalmers ran one hand through his hair while looking around. He looked tired and slightly worn out as his eyes searched the room looking for something. “All right. Ensign Kincaide over there is probably the best suited to the job. Tell her I said she needs to fix it. Now if you’ll excuse me sir, I have work to do.” With that he turned and walked off. Tal activated the controls on his hover chair and floated over to where she was crouched down in front of an access panel. Her tool box was open beside her and she was busy working on something and muttering under her breath while doing it. “Ensign. May I have a word with you.” Tal asked. “Look I’m busy. Go fix it yourself.” She replied with out turning around. “If I could I would Ensign. However this device requires more skilled hands that I have.” She muttered a groan as she pulled her arms out of the opening in front of her and stood up while turning around.“Look can’t you see I’m busy…. Ohhh….”Suddenly her expression of exasperation changed to one of surprise and contrition. “Sorry sir…. I didn’t realize… I mean….” ((Cart’ hen III, City of Mith, Subterranean tunnel, 7 years ago)) They hurried along the narrow passage way ignoring the stench and occasional clump of noxious material. Between the 2 largest members of the rescue team hung the naked form of their Chief of Security, Lt. Cmdr. Tal Tel-ar. He looked like hell warmed over and then stomped by a herd of wild bison. Suddenly they slowed to a stop. “What’s wrong?” “I’m not sure but I think he’s coming to. Besides I gotta rest a moment Lt. Cmdr.” Was the panted reply. “The chief ain’t some lightweight you know.” “All right take 10. Palmer check him out. Let me know his status.” “Sure thing.” He replied as he moved forward and started to conduct an examination. Tal opened his one eye and looked around. Things were a little blurry but he recognised the people around him. Evidently they had sprung him from his situation. He tried to reach out and grab the man next to him. Instead it was he who reached out and took his hand. “Cmdr. Tel-ar. Listen to me. We have to get you to the ship. You have massive internal injuries and extensive damage to your spine. Do you understand?” Tal tried to speak as his eyes rolled back into his head. The last thing he heard was, “We’re losing him sir. We got to ……” ((USS Apollo, Sickbay, Now)) “DOCTOR!!!” yelled the nurse from where she stood next to the bed holding the impressive figure of an Andorian Cmdr. “Neural activity is dropping.” Suddenly she was pushed aside as the doctor rushed up to see for himself just what was going on. His fingers moved to the neural simulators and increased the charge, more than doubling their output. “Sir isn’t that setting dangerously high?” “It is but we need to try and stimulate activity. Last thing I want is to tell the Captain we have 2 brain dead Andorians down here.” “Understood.” “Get me 50 cc’s of adrenalin, 200 cc’s of Zormadine, 35 cc’s of Korvindamine and another 60 cc’s of phloraphine.” “I thought you couldn’t use Korvindamine on Andorians. It was considered too risky.” She asked as she prepared the meds requested. “It is but I’m hoping the phloraphine will lessen the bad side affects and give us a positive response.” The doctor replied as he took the first hypo spray and administered the medication. As soon as he was done he reached for the next one. ((Earth, Scotland, Kincaide Manor, 4 years ago)) Tal turned to watch as Elina and her father walked slowly towards him. She looked radiant dressed all in white and he had to wonder again how he had ended up here. It had been a strange, surreal experience for him. One in which he was never really sure how and why they were together. Not that he regretted it. No in fact for some peculiar reason he really did not understand he not only enjoyed being with her but looked forward to every moment spent with her. ((USS Apollo, Sickbay, Now)) The nurse suddenly reached over and stopped the doctor from applying the hypo spray in his hand. “Nurse. What do you think your doing?” “Look at the monitor. His adrenal levels just jumped.” “What?” Exclaimed the doctor as he turned to examine the data displayed for himself. “But that’s impossible.” ((USS Challenger-A, 3 years ago)) “Well Doctor how is she?” Tal asked as soon as the doctor had entered the room. “Honestly she is doing better than expected. As you know there was some concern since most mothers of hybrid species babies suffer some complications.” “You explained all this to me all ready Doctor. My concern right now is for my wife.” “Well in that case Cmdr. I can tell you she is in great condition and so are your 4 babies. You may go in and join her if you like.” “Thank you Doctor.” Tal replied as he turned and headed towards the room he knew Elina was in. ((USS Apollo, Sickbay, Now)) “What is it?” asked the nurse. The doctor turned towards her with a confused look on his face as he replied. “I’m not sure. Somehow his body is fighting what ever is happening to him.” “Could this be a normal physiological reaction due to his species?” “I doubt it. Patients about to drop into a coma never suddenly start to produce adrenaline, cortisone, endorphines, seratonin, or dopamine. Let alone at such levels. It’s like his body is trying to kick start his neural activity on its own.” ((USS Challenger-A, 2 years ago)) Tal stood on the bridge. His gaze fixed to the forward view screen ahead of him. This was it. His first real command, this was the chance of a lifetime. One he planned not to waste. After all he had been through, growing up as a primitive barbarian on a pre-industrial world, then to be found and educated but tossed away by his own species, forever bared from returning to Andor by an act of the Science Council. Finding himself suddenly among strangers all over again, lost in a world he never really understood even though he enjoyed the challenges of the Academy. Even his career with Starfleet, spending most of his time as an Ensign in one brig or another every time he got shore leave. Returning to the Academy for more training, then making the rounds as he served on first one ship then another. Follow that by meeting and falling in love with a human female who due to severe complications during her second pregnancy had left Starfleet and him to return to Earth. Now this…. ((USS Apollo, Sickbay, Now)) “He’s starting to convulse. It’s too much for his system.” Exclaimed the Doctor as he threw his upper body on top of the suddenly convulsing Andorian on the bed in front of him. “What can I do?” asked the nurse. “Reduce the neural stimulators output by 50% first then give him 75 cc’s of Covalinamine.”The doctor ordered as he was almost tossed off. The convulsions were getting worse. The nurse did as ordered then added her body weight to that of the doctors. Even then he easily bounced the 2 of them around. Suddenly his entire body arched, held that pose for a couple seconds then he collapsed to lie still. They both waited a few moments before they stood up, glancing at each other to make sure they were both all right. Then the doctor checked the data on the monitors did a couple quick scans and finally turned to face the nurse with a small smile on his tired features. “He should be ok now. Just let him sleep.” Then he turned to go help the next patient that needed help.
  13. Tal breathed in the hot dry air as the transporter affect vanished leaving him stranded on the surface of Cart’ahen III for the next 2 weeks. It was almost like coming home. That is if Tal had a home. He never had, however he had been raised in the training barracks on Ten-nok VII. Just like this world it was a hot dry desert and he suspected that those were not the only similarities between the 2 worlds. However unlike Ten-nok VII, the indigenous people of this world had not been allowed to develop on their own. They had been easily conquered and enslaved by the Klingons. Then they had spent the next ?? years working in various mines. It was only when the Klingons had found better sources of raw ores closer to home that they finally abandoned the world and left the natives to try and survive on their own. Now true the Klingons still had a facility on the planet but now all it housed were criminals and political guests. A glorified prison with the reputation that no one had ever escaped or been released. Add to that the various cities and towns that had been developed by more species than it was reasonable to expect in one place and you had the current hell hole that was Cart’ahen III. A place where anything goes, where corruption goes hand in hand with greed, avarice and brutality. And those were just some of the finer sentiments that motivated the majority of the population. Fortunately that was not why he was here. Instead he was here because he was bored and an old friend from the Academy had asked him for a favour. Now true she was not really a friend. Merely one of the many young ladies that his room mate had dated during their time at the Academy. However she had been instrumental in helping arrange Tal’s very first date. So in a way Tal did own her one. Besides when he had heard her request he had been intrigued. It seems she was doing some research and needed some first hand, eye witness data about the small percentage of natives that had decided to return to the old ways and live a nomadic existence in the deserts that covered most of this planet. Their situation was not only unusual but fairly unique. After all how many species had undergone the extreme social upheaval that they had been subjected to. According to the records the Klingons had forcible stripped them of all their history, culture and social traditions in order to make better workers out of them. Then after generations of hard labour and brutal domination they had just been tossed out to fend for themselves. So here he was, deep in the desert, as far from any of the larger communities as he could get. And while he could never attempt to pass himself off as one of them he could try to make his presence less offensive. So as a result he had left his uniform behind and was dressed like one of them. Or at least as much like them as the few data files that were available seemed to indicate they dressed. Suddenly his antenna detected something. It sounded like movement. They were coming from a couple different directions and seemed to be moving fairly rapidly. Tal lifted the hood off his head to allow his antenna better access to the sound waves. It would also serve the purpose of identifying him as an outsider. According to the few files that had been available, the nomads were normally hostile towards anyone not a member of their small tribe. The only exception to this were the few traveling traders that moved from place to place. Most of the tribes considered them to be too valuable a source of rare goods to ever risk offending them. Hence the 2 huge packs that Tal had on his shoulders. Tal waited patiently. The sun beat down and soon sweat started to bead his forehead and still he waited. Then suddenly over the top of the closest dune came a man dressed all in flowing robes the color of the sands around them. He kept walking until he was only a few arms lengths away. Then he unwrapped his face and tossed back his hood. His features were unusual but the scars made him look tough, dangerous. Even through the robes Tal could tell he was strong. His eyes were cold, hard with a kind of restrained anger that could erupt at the least provocation. He stared back, looking Tal over. Judging him. Evaluating his right to live. Evidently Tal passed muster because a slight grin crossed his homely features as he brought his left hand up and struck himself on the right side of his chest. When he spoke his voice was deep, yet soft. With that elusive quality that let you know he was in charge. “Welcome stranger. May you always have water and never become lost.” “May you always have water and strong sons to follow in your foot steps.” Tal replied. And with that simple exchange of greetings Tal was welcomed amongst them. They brought him to their camp. Gave him food and water and spent many hours bartering for the goods that Tal had brought with him. While he did not truly care if he made a profit he knew he needed to play the part if he was to learn as much as possible about these people. In the end he knew they got the better of him but he did not care. For the first time in a long time he felt almost relaxed. Like he had found something that was missing, something that had so far been missing from his life. In the process he had been able to amass quite a bit of what he hoped would be useful data. So here he was, nearing the end of his shore leave. Standing near the tent he had been sharing with a number of single males. It was merely a suspended canopy that blocked the sun but still allowed full movement and sight in any and all directions. The sun was just reaching it’s zenith and the heat was climbing slowly. Soon it would be so hot that any exposed skin coming into contact with metal or rock would be burned. As a result the last few members of the tribe that were not already in the shade slowly moved to join the rest. Tal turned and was about to join them when something made him stop. He turned back and looked out towards the surrounding sand dunes. Heat waves danced their shimmering little dance, distorting even his enhanced vision. There was little sound, just the idle chatter of people relaxing. Most of the animals were asleep, but even those few who were not made very little noise. Something seemed wrong, but try as he might he could not find any reason for why he felt that way. Everything seemed the same as always. Was the heat starting to get to him? Tal finally gave it up with a slight shake of his head and turned back towards his tent. WWWWWWHHHOOOOSSSHHHHHH Tal threw him self forward into the tent but the ground rose up and slammed into him. Dust was everywhere, obscuring his vision and something had landed on top of him. He managed to twist enough so that he could reach back and push it off only to see that it was one of the men he had been sharing the tent with. His lifeless eyes stared off into the distance, covered with a thin film of dust. Looking around Tal spotted a huge crater in the ground where the far side of the tent use to be. Everything was tossed around, scattered piles of flesh and equipment mixed with sand and blood. Tal crawled towards a large pile of debris as more lethal sounds shattered the air. These were intermixed with screams of pain, rage, anger and fear. Tal shoved his hand inside his robe, fishing for the small hand phaser he had brought with him as he pushed himself up and glanced over the mound he was crouched behind. It looked worse than it sounded. Everywhere he looked people were running around, stumbling in a daze or cowering behind anything that might offer the least little bit of protection. Mixed in among them were a few strangers, men with bloody blades who hacked and slashed at anything that came close to them. As he watched Tal saw a young girl almost cut in half when she staggered out in front of one of them. Tal raised his phaser to shoot but before he could, he spotted something out of the corner of his eye and rolled away just in time. A large sword like weapon slammed into the ground where he had been lying just a second ago. The man wielding it was splashed with blood. His face a snarling mask of rage as he lunged forward. Again Tal managed to roll out of the way before the blade could make contact. Only this time his body stopped moving when he smashed into a pile of debris. He was trapped with no where to go as the blade was lifted up and started to fall. Suddenly the man dropped the blade as a large spear head exploded out of his chest splattering Tal with his blood before he dropped to the sand. A large foot slammed down on his back as the tribesman that had finished him twisted and tugged on his weapon trying to free it from the body at his feet. Tal started to get up, spotted another on of their attackers approaching the tribesman from behind and managed to get off a shot that slowed him down long enough for Tal to hit him again. This time he fell backwards onto the dead man that had landed on Tal earlier. Getting to his feet Tal looked around carefully. Each time he spotted one of their attackers he fired a shot. After about 6 shots he could not spot any more of the enemy. An eerie, unnatural quiet had descended on the camp. One intermixed with moans and the agonizing cries of the wounded. Tal waited a few more seconds then moved towards where the fighting seemed to have been the worst. He stepped over bodies and around piles of gear. It was all such a waste. Such a needless waste he thought. Tal twisted aside as a spear was thrust towards him. He felt the edge of the blade cut the skin on his stomach just before the point struck his phaser. It glanced off but damaged it so badly in the process that it overloaded and lightning like arcs of energy exploded out of it. The result was that his hand felt like it had been subjected to an electrified firestorm. The phaser dropped from his now useless hand as Tal ducked under the follow up stroke his attacker did using the shaft of the weapon. In response Tal smashed his injured hand into the pit of his stomach. As he did it Tal twisted at the waist and put his entire body behind the blow. Even with that he was unsure which one of them regretted his actions the most, even when he lifted the man off his feet with the punch. Tal immediately followed up with another punch that shattered his attackers jaw. With the man down Tal looked around. It seemed to be all over now. All that was left was to bury the dead and care for the wounded. As he stood there he realized that this planet was similar in so many ways to his own home world. It went way beyond them both being desert planets. At the heart of it all was the reason he had chosen to join Starfleet. He realized that was his home now as he moved to assist the closest wounded survivor.
  14. As the shimmering effect of the transporter diminished Tal glanced around. He was surrounded by the densest jungle on the planet which when you consider that the planet was Duronis II was pretty dense. The small clearing he was in existed only because of the waterfall and smooth exposed rock surrounding it. But the tranquil beauty of the location was not why he was here. Tal barely noticed it and then only to notice the absence of foul smells. That was the hardest thing for him to adjust to living on a planet as backwards as this one. The underlying stench of so many people crammed into one small area along with all the other smells, putrid and otherwise that assailed his antenna every time he left the Embassy and entered the city proper. No, he was here to relax and for him that meant the absence of people and technology. Fortunately finding a place to get away from it all was not that hard to do. He would have preferred a nice desert or even some frigid arctic wasteland but the first was almost totally missing from this world and the second was hardly worth considering. So here he was, deep in the heart of the largest jungle on the planet, about to enjoy 3 days away from it all. His antenna twitched to the buzzing of numerous flying insects. They flocked to him as he dropped his backpack and started to get undressed. A few even went so far as to bit him hoping he would satisfy their hunger. In that regard they were sorely disappointed. His alien Andorian blood was to chemically different from the native version for them to be able to digest it. In fact most of the insects that bit him died soon after as the white blood cells from his blood attacked their systems. Finished undressing Tal neatly folded his uniform and packed it into a small pouch that he then sealed shut. He slipped his communications badge into the outer pocket, placed in on the rock surface next to his backpack and then turned away, running the few yards to the edge of the rock where he flung himself out into the deep pool at the base of the water fall. He surfaced, enjoying the cool feeling of the water against his skin. After swimming for a while he climbed out and got dressed. His clothes a drastic change from his normal uniform, especially the savage looking knife on his belt. Now all he had to do was find a place to string up his hammock and then find something to eat and he would be set for the night. A slight smile drifted across his face as he anticipated the welcome challenges awaiting him. ************************************* The rain poured down, a torrential flood of rain that reduced visibility to less than a dozen feet. Even here under the trees at the edge of the clearing where he had been staying he was drenched. His shirt was plastered to his skin and water ran down his face, dripping from his nose and chin in a continual never ending cycle. Most people would have been annoyed, maybe even irritated. Most would have curled into some kind of rain gear and tried to cower under some kind of shelter but not Tal. He merely leaned back, letting his body settle back into the soft cradle that was his hammock. Suddenly his antenna twitched and his eyes opened. He sat up again and looked around. Something was wrong. A sudden flash of light was quickly followed by a booming crash of thunder. The sound and vibration in the air caused his antenna to suddenly lay back against his skull. For a few moments he was practically blind, his enhanced sense of hearing neutralized. Tal rolled out of the hammock and dropped to the ground. As he did a sudden flash of light streaked across the clearing and almost cut his hammock in half. Instantly Tal rolled deeper into the jungle, away from who ever had just tried to kill him. He crouched in the dark, most of his body under the large drooping fronds of some native fern plant. His keen eyes scanned the clearing, seeking any sign of movement. However it was his antenna that warned him of movement. Someone was behind him, creeping closer. Tal remained motionless, except for his eyes. Time seemed to stand still as he waited. Lighting flashed again, followed by another powerful crash of thunder. Still nothing. Suddenly Tal spotted the man just as another flash of lightning lit up the area. He held a scanner in one hand and some kind of energy pistol in the other. As soon as Tal spotted him, he moved. His legs acted like a spring to power him up and out, thrusting him rapidly towards the man as he started to swing his weapon towards him. Just as his finger tightened on the trigger, Tal smashed a devastating uppercut right into his jaw. It was powered by his entire body and he felt a sickening crack as the man’s jaw shattered. He dropped, out cold before he even hit the ground. Tal glanced around quickly. No movement, except for the pounding rain. Turning his attention to the man, Tal realized he was Romulan. Young, fit, wearing typical jungle fatigues and armed with a knife, disruptor pistol and scanner. Tal searched him quickly and removed all his gear, including a small signal transponder that would allow a cloaked ship to lock on and transport him away. Puzzled Tal wondered why they had attacked him. True he had meddled into their attempts to influence the local political elections, but this was to well planned for it to be any of the local Romulans. No, unless Tal was very mistaken this guy was either some specially trained soldier or a member of the Tal Shiar. Either way he was not alone. The first shot had come from in front of him, not behind. Now that he knew it was Romulans he also could be fairly sure that there were 4 more of them sneaking around looking for him. Tal quickly searched him again, glad that he did when he found a small communications device. He added it to the rest of the gear and then moved all it out of sight under the large fern he had been hiding under. Finished he eased into the jungle, moving silently, all his senses alert for the others. It took a while. Longer than he had expected but they were obviously being very careful. It did not help as Tal disarmed the man easily. Next he tried to pull his knife but Tal grabbed his wrist and held him still while hammering a few blows into his chin and face. Suddenly his knees gave way and he dropped to the ground. Just like the last one he searched and removed all his weapons and equipment. Then he took it with him as he slipped off into the undergrowth. As soon as he could he hid the stuff, then he continued his search. This time he almost blundered into one of them. His senses warned him in time to throw himself forward. Even with that his left shoulder exploded into agony as it was partially hit with a grazing shot. For the next 10 minutes he was on the run. Constantly ducking and weaving, barely staying ahead of the enemy fire. Finally he managed to work his way over to where the river ran through the jungle. As soon as he got there he dove in. The cool water felt fantastic, it almost instantly started to relieve the tingly, burning sensation where he had been hit. It also let him break contact with the enemy. As he swam upstream towards the waterfall he allowed himself to think back over the previous mad dash through the jungle. Had he been shot at by 2 or 3 individuals. It took him a few seconds, but the more he thought about it the more he was sure it had only been 2. Once he reached the edge of the clearing where the waterfall was, Tal moved to the bank and was about to climb out when 2 men entered the clearing. As before they both had disruptors and scanners. Quickly he took a deep breath and forced himself under, pulling himself along until he got to a spot where the water was more than 6 feet deep with in a couple feet of the bank. The whole time he kept looking up. Waiting. Suddenly he spotted them. They had just walked up to the bank and seemed to be arguing about something. Tal took advantage of their momentary distraction and propelled himself out of the water. Reaching out with his long arms and grasping their shirts in an iron fingered grip. After that it was simple to yank them both into the water and hold them under till they finally stopped struggling. Instantly he surfaced, took a deep breath and then hauled both of them out of the water. He turned them over, face down on the smooth rock surface and applied pressure until they both expelled the water in their lungs. His antenna leaned forward, searching for some indication they were breathing. He caught the faint rasp of indrawn air seconds before he flung himself forward over them towards a grassy section of ground. Tal turned to look up at another man. His face was a strange mask of rage and anger. In his hand he held a savage looking knife. He paced forward, his brown eyes gleaming with deadly intent. Tal could tell he was an expert hand to hand fighter. The way he held the knife, moved, it all spoke of years of practice and training. He moved closer, his balance superb. His eyes watchful as the tip of his blade kept shifting, never still, masking his intent until the last second. He lunged, flipped the blade to the opposite hand, slid forward and thrust, aiming for Tal’s eyes. At the last second Tal slapped the blade away, moving in close as he did. It flashed by his head missing by a slim fraction. Tal surged ahead, slamming his elbow into his head. It rocked him, forcing him to take a step back as he tried to stab his fingers into Tal’s face. Tal followed up with a punishing uppercut to the jaw and ended it with a spinning kick. He sucked air into his lungs, calming his breathing as he moved forward and made sure the man was out cold. Only then did he search him. As soon as he was done he searched the other two, made sure they were both still breathing. The one moved slightly, trying to rollover. Tall lifted him and struck swiftly. A controlled strike that instantly knocked him out cold. Looking around Tal collected all their technology, placed it into one pile and when he was done he went and retrieved the other two men and their gear. Tal then retrieved his backpack and loaded all their gear into it. All he left them was their knives. By the time he was done it had stopped raining. From the looks of things dawn would soon be here. Tal undressed, wiped himself down and retrieved the bundle with his uniform in it. As soon as he was dressed Tal replaced his communications badge on his chest and activated it. =/\= Cmdr. Tel-ar to the USS Thunder. Beam me up. =/\= =/\= Understood sir. Just be a minute. =/\= While he waited for them to transport him back up to the ship Tal stood calmly waiting with his backpack in his hand. Then he vanished to reappear aboard the ship. Looking around he saw the transporter chief smile just as he asked a question. “So sir. Did you have a good vacation?” “Yes Ensign. I did enjoy myself.” As he said it a slight ghost of a smile drifted across his features. “Glad to hear it sir. Take care.” “I plan to Ensign.”Tal replied just before he turned and left the room. Out in the corridor he activated his communications badge as he walked towards his security. =/\= Cmdr. Tel-ar to the bridge. =/\= =/\= Yes sir. Lt. Michaels here. =/\= =/\= Lt. I want you to place a mark III jamming satellite in space over the location where I was beamed up from. =/\= =/\= A mark III? =/\= =/\= Yes Lt. Schedule it for retrieval in a month. =/\= =/\= Ok Sir. May I ask why? =/\= =/\= Pest control Lt. After all even pests deserve a vacation. Tel-ar out. =/\=
  15. To go Where no Man has gone Before The shuttle slowed as it entered the planets atmosphere. As it did the craft shook due to the slight turbulence that was a recognized part of the transition from empty space to planetary atmosphere. From there it shifted it’s flight path to allow it to land outside the city high up in a sheltered alcove on the side of the mountain that towered over the valley below. Once it had landed safely and the dust had started to settle the rear hatch popped open and 3 figures stepped out. They were radically different from each other. The first walked with a graceful stride that spoke of agility and restrained power. As he turned to look up at the night sky the light from the interior was absorbed by his short brown fur. His face was a subtly mix of animal characteristics and humanoid intelligence. The next one out had pale skin and short sandy hair. He was also humanoid, a perfect example of the terran species. Next came the tallest member of the group. He had large compound eyes, antenna and a dull reddish skin tone that resembled well treated leather. His body was abnormally thin for his height but his legs and arms were unusually long and they both had an extra joint in them. They all moved to where they could look down upon the city. Once there the furry one lifted a set of enhanced night vision binoculars to his face and swiftly adjusted them to the desired setting. “Don’t you think it’s a little weird that the one member of the team who has perfect night vision has to use night vision binoculars to get the job done?” asked Adam. “Not really,” replied Cavaarr in his soft fluid voice.“Unfortunately the company that manufactures these for Starfleet happens to be on Earth. Your home world. They were designed with you in mind.” “Actually over 94% of all species within the Federation lack true night vision capability. Considering those statistics it is only logical that Starfleet uses night vision enhanced binoculars as standard equipment.”The slight clicking of the mandibles around his mouth made it plain that the tall insect like member of the team had spoken. “Thanks for that little bit of info Kritik. So how does it look Cavaarr?” “It seems you were successful in bringing the shuttle down undetected.” “That’s good to know. How about our contact?” “According to the signal they are in the heart of the city,” replied Kritik. “So what now?” asked Adam. “Now we wait. Then tomorrow I will enter the city and see if I can make contact,” replied Cavaarr. “Why can’t our contact just bring the data out here and hand it over?” “According to the files I read prior to our leaving the ship,” explained Kritik, “They can not travel anywhere with out an escort. The farther from the Haran, their place of residence the larger the number of guards assigned.” “OHH. Ok.” Adam replied. He stood and waited with them for a bit but when they did not say anything else he returned to the shuttle. Once inside he double and triple checked all the systems then climbed into one of the bunks and fell asleep. ************** When Adam woke up he could hear some movement. Sitting up he saw that Kritik was busy checking a number of medical supply cases. Most of the items he could see were beyond his understanding of simple emergency medicine. Fortunately the regal insect was an excellent doctor. “Where is Cavaarr?” “He entered the city late last night so as to be able to reach the target at first light.” Having said that he turned and glanced outside before speaking again. “Unless I am mistaken he should be back soon.” “Good. Something about this place gives me the willies,”Adam replied. “Willies? I do not remember that subject from the Academy. What is a willies?” Adam could not help but smile as he responded. “The willies are an irrational fear based on instinct and gut feelings.” “Ahhh. I see.” He replied as he shook his head. “It’s a terran thing Kritik,” spoke up Cavaarr as he stepped soundlessly into the shuttle. “Just another example of how far down the evolutionary ladder they still are.” “Did you get it?” Adam asked eagerly. “No.” Cavaarr replied. His tail swished as he removed the concealing robes that had hidden his furry alien form. “Our contact is restricted to the Haran. Unfortunately neither me or Kritik may enter there.” “What about Ensign Borders?” “With a few slight modifications he should easily be able to pass as both a native and as someone who has the right to enter the Haran.” “Good. Get to work then Kritik. I will use the replicator to fashion appropriate clothing for him.” At that the tall slim insectoid turned and spoke to their pilot.“Ensign Borders if you would kindly get undressed.” “Sure but is that really necessary in order to make me look like one of them?” Adam asked. “No. However it is necessary in order to make you into a female.” At that Adam stepped back. Both of his hands dropped down to unconsciously cover up and protect certain physical characteristics that he was very attached to as he replied in a startled and abnormally high tone. “WHAT!!! Are you two nuts!” “Not that I know of,” replied Kritik. “In fact I have passed all my mental exams.” “There is no way I am letting you two turn me into a female. There has to be another way. There just has to.” He pleaded. “Unfortunately this is the only way. Only females are allowed into the Haran Ensign Borders,” explained Cavaarr in a soft tone.“Even all the guards are female.” “But I like being a guy,” Adam mumbled. “Do not worry Ensign Borders. With the current level of technology it is fairly simple for me to make the necessary adjustments to make you look and scan as a female of this particular species.” “Well I am not doing it. No way. Not a chance.” “This is important Ensign Borders. As such I am giving you a direct order. Let Kritik perform the alterations or else.” As he finished speaking Cavaarr let out a low sinister growl that left his fangs exposed and the full deadly potential of his species shine from with in his eyes. Adam stepped back and bumped into the bulkhead. He almost fell down but managed to recover. It was the low purr like rumble of soft laughter that let him know he had never been in danger. With his cheeks red and feeling like an idiot he started to get undressed. As he did he had to ask the question. “You can change me back right?” “Yes. Ensign Borders. Otherwise I would not perform this procedure.” “All right then. Lets do this before I chicken out.” As he said it Adam pulled off his pants and tossed them aside with the rest of his clothes. Right now he wanted to be anywhere but here. “Excellent Ensign. Just lie down here and I will get started.” In response Adam did as he was told. Seconds later a mask was slipped over his face and he drifted off to sleep. **************** He woke up feeling no different than always. That is until he sat up and saw what they had done to him. “Did you have to make them so big?” Adam asked as he stared at his chest. “Actually Ensign they are average size for this species,”replied Kritik from where he stood examining the data on his tricorder. “If this is average then I got to come back here sometime for shore leave,” Adam responded. “That will be enough of that Ensign. You have a job to do,”said Cavaarr as he stepped forward with the alien clothes. Adam took them and just stared at them for a moment. He had no idea how they should be worn. It took Cavaarr stepping forward to help him before he even started. **************** “Well how do I look?” asked Adam. “Are you sure he is still male?” responded Cavaarr.“He sounded an awful lot like my mate just then.” “Thanks a lot Cavaarr. Just what I needed to hear right now.” “I assure you Lt. Ensign Borders may appear to be female but his mental and biological essence is still fundamentally male.” “I will take your word for it Kritik. Anyway you better get going Ensign. You need to be back before nightfall as no females are allowed into or out of the city after dark.” “Understood Lt. Wish me luck,” Adam said as he turned and left the shuttle. “What do you think his chances of success are Kritik?” “Honestly Lt. I believe it is a good thing that my species do not gamble.” “That’s what I thought…” With that said Cavaarr moved to the open hatch and looked out. His mind was a whirl as he considered the mission that Ensign Borders had to perform. He should be ok as long as he remembered that he was suppose to be a female. Simple really. At least he hoped so. ***************** Adam scrambled up the last few feet and rolled over the edge onto the ledge that was not very far from where he had parked the shuttle the previous day. He was exhausted, dirty, sweaty and covered in grime. Just as he was scrambling to his feet he heard the low purring voice of Lt. Cavaarr. “Did you get it Ensign?” “Yeah.” Adam responded as he struggled to his feet. “I got it.” “Good lets get out of here.” “Leave now? What about this?” Adam asked as he pointed down at his barely covered form. “What about it?” responded Cavaarr. “What do you mean, what about it. Look at me. I’ve got breasts! “I noticed Ensign. Your not my type. However if you ask really nicely maybe Kritik will let you keep them as a souvenir after he changes you back. In the mean time we need to get off this planet and back to the Captain as fast as possible.” “”All right.” Adam responded as he stomped past heading towards the shuttle. Soon the shuttle took off, its engines a silent roar that propelled the small craft up, up and away.
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