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The Enemy Within


Toni

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A wound festered inside of her. The cut had peeled away the layers of life itself and buried its way deep within her skin, fleecing her of all rationale, and robbing her of the future that she had long dreamed would make life in Starfleet complete. She was alone in her agony - even the consoling words of those gathered around her could not stop the pain that raged so fiercely, silencing her.

Lieutenant Taylor, the Chief Medical Officer, stared into her glazed eyes. "Captain Pelzer, I'm sorry, there is nothing more I can do."

She had long appreciated the doctor's candor, but never more than she did at this moment. Slowly nodding her head, she mouthed with great difficulty due to the growing lump in her throat. "I know. It’s over." But that was not totally true. The surge of pain seizing her chest reminded her that she was still alive, although the torment of its horrific grip made her wish that she was not.

It was not the dying that caused her so much suffering. It was the living without him, and the prospects of awakening, not to see her own image reflected in his eyes - eyes incapable of giving him pleasure, as now, they were hollow as the demon heart that possessed his every thought. And it was only a matter of time before it took him away from her forever. She wanted to scream, beg him to fight, but it would have been futile. The Bluegill had won, only she had not declared it the winner yet. She couldn’t. She wanted desperately to hold him tight in her arms and never let him go, but the force field between them had to stay in place, or expose her crew to the ravages of the offending parasite.

Her crew - the crew that looked to her for the next move - needed her to be strong. She had to snap out of the heartbreak plaguing her. If she could only keep her stinging eyes dry long enough, she may be able to scrape up some kind of wisdom that would save them. Mustering every ounce of energy left in her, she stood and moved away from his motionless body, mouthing oO"I love you.Oo Then turning to her crew, she armed herself. If they all were to die, it would not be because they didn't try to survive, or that she had not been the leader he had so admired.

Drawing her phaser, she gave the order. "Arm yourselves to the teeth, and bring me extra weapons! We'll fight together!"

As she led them determinedly outside, and as a blaze of phaser fire lit up the landscape, she felt the flutter of hope. oO He will live on. I'll fight for my crew, and the namesake that I carry for him. Oo

Fleet Captain Toni Turner

Commanding Officer

Embassy Duronis II

USS Thunder NCC 70605-A

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