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Her Greatest Fear


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"It started as flashes. At the time I wasn't what they really were. Perhaps it was just my imagination running wild, filling in gaps I hadn't been able to fill since I was a child. But as time passed, the flashes morphed into more in depth, clearer images. Whispers became voices," Rune said, her voice soft and quiet. She drew in a slow, steady breath. "The panic attacks began soon after the memories began to surface."

She swallowed hard, not able to make eye contact. "Fits of sudden nausea, cold sweats, shaking hands, blurred vision, heart racing so fast I thought it would burst through my chest. I couldn't breath. I couldn't move. I became utterly paralyzed by fear."

((10 Years Ago - Sabahnuor Attitude Readjustment Center, Leya-I))

16 year old Rune's heart began racing as soon as they stepped through the doorway. A few more steps and she got a sudden sick feeling deep inside her stomach. A few more steps and she stopped. Her mentor, Dura Refa, stopped a step ahead of her and turned to look at her.

Looking up at the older woman, "I changed my mind," Rune said.

"Runica..."

Rune shook her head. "I don't need this," she said, forcing a nervous smile. "Really... I will try harder. I promise."

Dura gave her a saddened look, her eyes scrunching into a frown. "Runica, you've tried. No one faults you for needing help." The woman's voice was gentle, yet firm.

The doors at the end of the corridor opened. Rune's heart nearly stopped when she saw the two attendants emerge. One male, one female. Both dressed in standard white uniforms. The closer they got, the more panicked she became. She started to back up but Dura grabbed her arm.

"Please, Dura..." Rune said, pleadingly as she tried to pull free. Dura's fingers dug into the girl's arm, holding tight. Her heart was racing, pounding deafeningly inside her chest. She struggled harder to pull away but it wasn't enough. Before she knew it, the two attendants were there. They grabbed her arms, one on each side.

"I'm sorry, Runica. This is for the best," her mentor said, showing none of her earlier compassion.

Rune kicked and screamed and pleaded but it was all for nothing. Two sets of hands held fast, their fingers digging deep into her arms. She couldn't break free. They dragged her towards the doors. Her screams and pleas completely ignored. Once beyond the threshold, the entire atmosphere changed. It was colder and her screams echoed off the metallic walls.

She was taken into a small brightly lit room and stripped down to nothing, all the while fighting them. An elbow caught her in the mouth sending her head slamming back into the wall. Her vision exploded into a kaleidescope of colors and confusion. She could taste the blood in her mouth as hands grabbed her again and slammed her onto a cold, steel table.

The lights overhead were blinding. Of course that was all part of the process to wear down the "patient". Her head, arms and legs were strapped to the table, making it impossible for her to turn her head away from them and it didn't matter how tightly she clenched her eyes shut. The light still penetrated her eyelids and the nectating membrane beneath.

She was cold... freezing actually. Her heart was racing again and in spite of freezing, she was sweating. She could feel the tiny beads of sweat roll down the side of her face, mingling with the tears that escaped her eyes. She struggled against her bonds but she couldn't move.

Her muscles tensed as she heard a ripping sound and then something damp brushed against her forehead. She tried to jerk away but it was pointless. All of this fighting was pointless.

Then she felt it. Needles pierced her skin at various points around her body, along her spine, back of her neck and forehead. Pin [...]s turned into stinging, then burning and then excruciating pain engulfed her entire body. She tried to scream but the sound caught in her already raw throat.

((Present-time))

"Fear of what?" Nikki Ryan asked, her voice calm and soothing.

Tears rolled down her face as her head rested against Nikki's shoulder. She took comfort from the arms wrapped around her as they lay in the dark. Rune's softly glowing eyes flicked up to meet the other woman's crystal blues. Her question hanging between them. "Of being taken back and having my memories ripped out of me again," she said, her own lightly accented voice trembling slightly. "Of not being allowed to be here with you, to feel what I feel and to love who I love."

---

Lt. Rune Jolara

Chief Counselor - USS Apollo-A

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