Book of Devon, Vol One. Xandria, Defender of Starfleet.
Names have their meaning. It is given by our parents and their parents before them. There is a code we live by but it doesn’t always mean we have to live by them. Your name has meaning, Devon. Multiple meanings. My name has one singular meaning. We were born with the same destiny to join Starfleet. Our fate, no my fate is set. I- we don’t get to choose them no matter how much we want to avoid it. If you are listening to this. Then that means-
Devon closed the recorder. Sniffing softly, she wiped a tear that threatened to fall from her duct. Finding herself in a dimly lit attic, she thumbed the old Starfleet device in her hand and turned it over. Dust drifted among the old relics scattered all over the top part of her old house. Shuttered cupboards blocked the outside giving the room a dark feeling. The candle lights glowed as it filled the room with light. Somewhere below the room, the clock struck several times.
Devon looked straight across from the desk. Getting up, she moved her braided hair to the side and approached the closed window. Opening it, she looked outside into the clouds. It appeared to be midday. Surrounding her cottage was the sea by the rocky cliffs. People came and gathered on her yard. While some dressed in dark civilian clothing, others dressed in their Starfleet uniform dress in respect. Devon wore the dark tunic of a Starfleet Ensign of the tactical department.
A combadge beeped in her shirt. She ignored it for several moments and allowed it to beep. Exhaling a sigh, she tapped it as her father spoke, “Devon. Are you ready?”
Devon didn’t speak for a few moments as she let the silence linger. Finally, she replied with her Irish accent, “No.”
Biting her lips, she placed her arms around her knees and held herself closer as she leaned against the window. Her father replied, “We can’t start without you.”
Devon shook her head. Closing her sea-green eyes, she replied, “She’s not dead. She’s still alive.”
“Dev,” her father began before Devon shut the communication device off.
Mouthing softly, she whimpered, “She’s not dead. She can’t be dead. Her body-.”
Closing her eyes, her half Betazoid side caused her to remember as she flashed back the month before the mission.
Her body wasn’t found. That means she’s still out there. Missing!
Devon rushed toward the doorway as she ran after him. Gripping the side of the doorway, she shouted into the office as her Irish accept rebounded in the room, “Davis!”
The man in a red shouldered Starfleet uniform turned to face her and placed his arms behind his back. Opening his mouth, he replied sternly, “Ensign Caden, watch your tone!”
Devon exhaled sharply and closed her eyes. Controlling her temper, she recollected herself and opened her eyes. Walking through the doorway, she replied, “Forgive me, Captain. There has got to be-”
Davis looked at her with a hardened stare. Beneath the hardened stare was a cool, softer captain. He raised his hand to interrupt her and offered her a chair, “Have a seat, Ensign.”
Taking her seat, Devon nodded, “Aye, sir. Thank you, sir.”
Davis took his seat behind his desk. On it was an assortment of PADDS, his computer and the nameplate that stated his name clearly, Captain Leland P. Davis. He spoke, “We tried. Everything. We searched for survivors along the Cardassian border, but we found no others.”
The orange red haired ensign exhaled, “But, you didn’t find her tags. You didn’t even find her body. That means-”
Leland offered his hand again and replied, “She’s gone. Don’t even try to look. We need to account for the losses. You need to accept it and move on.”
“Move-” Devon whimpered softly and averted her eyes. Holding back her tears, she fought to control her emotions.
Leland watched the ensign. He could understand what she was going through. Exhaling a sigh, he picked up the PADD on his desk and stood from his chair. Walking toward the ensign, he held it out for her. Devon sniffed and looked up. Accepting the PADD, she looked over it as he knelt to her eye level and spoke, “You need time. I have granted you leave from Starfleet. Take however long you need it to be. Your rank and position are still open for you if you are ready to come back.”
“I-” Devon gulped and wiped her eyes. Looking at him, she looked over the PADD and nodded, “Thank you, sir.”
Devon walked through the doorway of her old cottage near the sea. Her father stood waiting by the porch. He looked at her with a sad smile. Devon bit her lips to hold back her emotions. Her Betazoid side continued to flare up causing her migraines. Opening her mouth, her voice cracked as her Irish accent came through, “Dad-”
Aric nodded with a wave of his hand, “I know. Your brother is waiting for us. Come here.”
Devon sniffed and nodded as she walked over to give him a hug. They embraced for a few seconds. Looping her arm into his arm, they walked down the steps and along the path toward the flowered terrace. Several people crowded in their own spaces. They held glasses and spoke in undertones. Before the casket stood an older boy of her age.
Recognizing him, Devon spoke, “Xander!”
Cedric turned toward her with dark eyes and a smile, “Hey sis.”
They embraced for a few seconds as Aric watched them both. He replied, “Cedric. Devon. If only your mother was here. She was always better at this than I. Your sister. May she rest.”
Cedric grew serious and nodded, “Amen, father.”
Devon huffed silently and looked away. Crossing her arms, she held herself and walked away. Cedric started forward, but Aric placed a hand on his shoulder. Shaking his head, he replied, “Give her time. Her death affected her more than ours.”
Cedric sniffed and shook his head. Turning, he faced him and replied, “It affected me too.”
Aric nodded, “I know, but there is a bond between them that goes beyond human. I may not understand it because I am Human, but your mother was Betazoid. She gave a part of her to you three. However, the bond she shared with your sister goes beyond limits. With her gone, your sister could withdraw into her shell. Give her space and time.”
Cedric sighed and turned to look for his sister. Devon had disappeared. Shrugging his father’s arm off, he ran after her.
Not far from the terrace, Devon walked down the stone steps and toward the column. Leaning against the stone, she stared out over the cliff. The winds from the waves below her brushed against her orange red hair. Behind her, Cedric approached softly. Sensing her brother, she smiled softly and replied, “You can come close, Xander. It’s okay.”
“Okay,” Cedric walked alongside her and looked out into the horizon. He nodded, “Sorry.”
Crossing her arms while leaning against the stone column, Devon turned to him and raised her eyebrow, “For what?”
Cedric looked at her and shrugged. Devon exhaled and shook her head. Offering a smile, she touched his head and ruffled his dark hair with a playful tousle, “You didn’t do anything wrong. It’s just-”
“Hard?” he replied while moving closer.
Devon bit her lips and exhaled with a nod, “Yeah. I know she’s not dead. She’s still out there. I can feel her. I ca-” she stopped and shook her head.
Cedric approached her and moved to her front. Shaking his head, he looked into her sea-green eyes and spoke, “This isn’t like what happened to mom. She didn’t die. She disappeared. Vanished. She-”
He stopped and backed slightly from her while turning away suddenly. Devon stared at him and processed. With a sigh, she uncrossed her arms and placed her hand on his shoulder. He looked at her as she replied, “I know and Starfleet gave up on trying to find her. She’s still out there too.”
Cedric closed his eyes and shook his head. Opening them, he replied, “But Xandria is dead. We need to move on.”
“No!” Devon yelled causing him to bite back his tongue. He averted her glare. She growled before controlling herself, “No. I can’t. Not yet.”
Covering her mouth, she sobbed quietly and turned away from him. Cedric walked a few steps forward and watched her disappear along the path into the docks below the cliff. Exhaling sadly, he placed his hands into his pockets and returned to the upper terrace.
Thirty minutes had passed. It was after the service that Devon disappeared into the house. Entering through the open doors, she closed it tight and locked it. Looking around the dimly lit empty room with the lines, she spoke, “Computer. Run program. Telstrus 3”
“Working,” the computer beeped.
The empty room transformed into the rust like atmosphere of the moon. Devon found herself standing on the edge of a cliff. She wore her Starfleet issued dark uniform with the gold stripes. She looked around the strangely colored atmosphere that smelled like rust even through her mask. The mountains appeared bare with several dead trees. Someone approached from behind her and spoke.
Devon turned to face her half Betazoid counterpart with long dark hair and dark eyes. She appeared of the same form as her with the same uniform. She smiled, “Xandria.”
Xandria smiled back with a twinkle in her eyes, “Something in your mind?”
Devon shook her head and turned away. Taking out her recorder, she fiddled with the casing and tried to keep back her emotions. Xandria approached from behind and sat down before the cliff. Inhaling the oxygen from her mask, she exhaled, “It’s always nice to take a break from a mission.”
Looking up, she smiled and patted the empty spot next to her, “Come. Sit!”
Hearing her speak made it hard for Devon to respond. Gasping softly, she sat down to join her. Xandria wrapped her arm around her shoulder. Hugging her close, she exhaled as the wind picked up around her. A gentle wind blew by them as Xandria replied, “I always like this. Before each and every mission as the winds blow, they tell us messages. They whisper to us. Do you know what they whisper?”
Closing her eyes, Devon gasped softly as tears started to fall from her duct. She inquired, “What?”
Xandria pulled her close and whispered into her ear, “They tell us to never be afraid. They tell us. They say move forward. Move on.”
Devon shook her head and looked at her. She replied, “I can’t.”
Her sister looked at her saddened features and inquired with concern, “Why not?”
“Because,” Devon sniffed and gasped softly, “You left a hole within me. When you disappeared in that mission near Telstrus. When you last spoke to me. You always said you liked the winds, but I can’t. I can’t move on. I won’t, because you can’t be dead.”
Xandria looked at her and [...]ed her head with concern. She nodded and stroked her chin, “It’s okay, Dev. Really. If you need time, you got time. What else is there?”
“I-” Devon sighed and turned away. Studying the recorder she held in her head, she replayed the last message.
-my fate is set. I- we don’t get to choose them no matter how much we want to avoid it. If you are listening to this. Then that means I am dead. Please, Devon. Move on. I know it’s hard, but you can do it. I love you. I will always love you.
The recorder clicked off as Devon covered her face and cried. Xandria watched her. Before she could speak, Devon spoke, “Computer, freeze program.”
Wiping her eyes, Devon looked at the frozen image of her sister. Biting her lips, she shook her head, “I can’t give up on you. I will not give up on you. I know you’re out there. Somewhere. Like our mother. But I can’t do it while I’m Starfleet. So, I’m resigning my commission to Starfleet to become an engineer. As a civilian, I have free reign to do whatever I want to do. I’m sorry, but I can’t let go. The winds change in my favor as I move forward but along a new path.”
Taking a few seconds to pause, she finished, “Computer. Delete program Telstrus 3”
Slowly as everything froze, Xandria’s image vanished as if her spirit floated away in the animated winds. Devon sadly watched her sister vanish.