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Lieutenant(jg) Regan Wilde - The Haunting of Deck 4


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I know, submitting my own sim, how gauche! But I was really proud of this special Halloween Below Decks piece. Happy Halloween!

 

((USS Arrow - Exterior, Space; The Final Frontier))

 

Throughout the ship there was silence; Aside from the usual humming of consoles, the gentle thrum of the warp core, and the minuscule sounds of other electrical elements that usually worked on a starship in the middle of the night.

On the bridge Delta Shift sat at their posts, observing whatever they needed to observe, scanning whatever they needed to scan, push that button, realign that relay, and do the myriad of mundane tasks they needed to do to make it through the boredom of the graveyard shift.

Most of the crew slept, relishing the end of their shifts and ready to slumber before attacking the new day in the morning.

 

((USS Arrow - Deck 4; Regan’s Quarters))

Regan was a messy sleeper. He slept heavily, as was his custom, and was found sprawled across his bed, covers and pillows haphazardly thrown around him which made him look ridiculously like a cat in a big cushion. One of his legs draped over the side of the bed, and he was dangerously close to falling out if he rolled over onto his side from the comfortable position on his stomach.

The chronometer on his bedside read 11:59. Minute to midnight. The witching hour approached. 

The Arrow was an old ship, and had developed her own rhythms and foibles over her years of service. Like an old house that might ‘rest’ after dark when the occupants retire, Arrow sighed a light breath of relief when the crew went to bed. The carpets and deck plating relished not being trodden on at the end of the day, the doors eased into slumber without fear of being swooshed open on a moment's notice, and the turbolifts wound down from their day's use. There was silence on deck.

Every clock, chronometer and computer terminal on the ship ticked over to 00:00. The clock in Regan’s quarters sounded an alarm call, like one would do for a morning wake up call. Only no one had requested one and if they did, it wouldn't be for midnight...

Waking up sharply from a deep sleep, Regan checked around the room to half wake himself up, half remember where he was. He rubbed his eyes groggily and grasped the little clock from his bedside. It was still chiming in his hand, so he shook it impatiently to make it stop. It did, after it chimed for a full two minutes, after which he grumpily put it back where it was.

Resting back into his bed, Regan closed his eyes and tried to get back to sleep. He was in no rush to get up just yet, still plenty of time for blissful slumber.

The lights turned on in his bathroom across from his bed. It didn’t bother him at first, but Regan needed total darkness to sleep. Peeking one eye open, he saw the bathroom light on and groaned. He was just about to get up to switch it off when it did so itself. Darkness again. Sighing contentedly, he snuggled down for more sleep. 

The light flicked on again. Oh this was getting ridiculous. First thing in the morning he was going to fill out a maintenance request and send it to engineering. There must be a faulty power relay or sensor outage. Once again the light flickered out.

Regan kept a suspicious eye open to see if it would happen again, and after a few moments of inactivity he was sure the problem had solved itself, so he went back to sleep.

 

((00:20))

Suddenly the doors to his quarters swooshed open alarmingly, filling the rest of the room with light, then closed as if it was natural to do so without a command. The shock of bright light awoke Regan instantly. 

He stomped out of bed and approached the door. It didn’t move. He pressed the panel beside it, and the doors parted. Regan peeked out into the corridor. Someone was playing a prank! That had to be it. Someone was messing with the functions in his quarters as some sort of twisted prank. He knew what date it was. October 31st. All Hallows Eve. He was impressed that someone had had the guts to choose him as a target for some Halloween spooky fun. 

Oh, his revenge would be swift and merciless when he found out who was responsible! 

Suddenly the lights in the corridor of Deck 4 flickered from light to dark, eerily. Looking from left to right, there was no one else around. Only him and the flickering corridor lights. They flickered for a few moments then shut off into the blackness all at once and, reluctant to admit he was scared, Regan yelped and ran back to bed and hid.

 

((00:45))

The lights on his personal replicator blinked in sequence. Slowly, carefully, it turned on like it was waking from sleep itself and whirred into existence a pot of hot tea . The replicator chirped a happy little tone to indicate the user should take their requested beverage. Regan heard the sounds and poked his head out from under his pillows. Ok now this was wrong. Something was very wrong.

He watched as the replicator came to life again and dissolved the teapot, replacing it with a bunch of daffodils in a crystal vase.

Wide awake now, he got out of bed and crept barefoot across the room. He checked the replicator functions but was met with an angry concoction of noises and lights. With an annoyed grunt he thumped his fist against the replicator.

Wilde: I’m not scared, you know! Whoever thinks this is funny, I’m not scared and I’m going back to bed!

He called out to his empty quarters. Someone was behind this, he was sure. This had Keneth Nakada written all over it…

Wilde: You hear me, Keneth!? I’m not scared!

The flowers dissolved and the replicator went back into sleep mode. Everything seemed calm. Regan gave a tired but grateful sigh and climbed back into his bed. Suddenly the lights came on in his quarters and started flickering wildly, so too the lights in his bathroom, and the sound of the sonic shower hummed forcefully from the other room.

The replicator bolted into life again and made an orchestra of angry computer sounds so odd it made Regan sit up in bed and gasp at the machine across the room. It gurgled and groaned before it wheezed and spat out a waterfall of bloodwine! With no glass or flagon to catch it, the thick, sickly beverage oozed from the replicator and over the edge, dripping down the wall panel and pooled on the carpet at the foot of his bed.

Regan watched, frozen in terror as the thick liquid oozed closer to him, searching for him. It seemed to be moving, and creeping closer and closer to his bed. A brilliantly dark sea of bloodwine soaked the carpet and pooled around his bed, creeping slowly, still coming for him. His bed was surrounded on all sides by bloodwine, sloshing and bubbling around him like it being brought to the boil by some great heat beneath the floor. He cried out now in fear…

 

((USS Arrow - Deck 4; Regan’s Quarters))

He awoke still yelling. Sweating and panting for breath he almost tumbled off the bed in alarm until he realised the chronometer on his bedside was chiming. He had accidentally reset the alarm function somehow and it showed an alarm call for 00:00 hours.

Wilde: Oh my God...it was a dream?

Placing the clock back in its place he lay back and caught his breath. The replicator was in sleep mode, no signs of expectorated bloodwine. No signs of blinking lights from his bathroom or mysteriously opening doors. Grateful but still unsettled he closed his eyes to try and get some sleep. He started to chuckle at the absurdity of the dream. Ghosts and spooks in this day and age? Get a grip, Regan.

Then the light in his bathroom blinked on and off. 

Regan yelled and grabbed his duvet covers from his bed and ran from his quarters. He ran into the corridor and banged on the closest door to his: Room 2, Maxwell Traenor’s quarters.

He banged and banged with the palm of his hand and pressed the door chime repeatedly, dancing madly from foot to foot in the hope of making the door open sooner. The form of a greatly confused and sleepy Maxwell Traenor appeared in the doorway, obviously disturbed. He looked like a big grumbly bear that had been woken from his hibernation. He looked at the younger Lieutenant carrying his duvet and dressed for bed in his Starfleet issue tank top and shorts with a mix of amusement and confusion.

Wilde: Maxwell! I’m so sorry but… can I sleep in here tonight!? 

 

NT/END
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