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Cadet Ico Ena - ...And before the end, a foreshadowing.

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Amazing sim by Alieth. Trippy, as many Bajoran Prophets ones are, and definitely fascinating.


((Cave System, Darime IV))


Just when it seemed that escape from that hellish cave system was at their fingertips, they had been attacked. Not only that but, in the midst of the attack, Ryan had fallen, crushed by a pain that came not from the outside, but from inside his head.


Ena had tried to protect him, had tried to understand what was happening, aware that he was still there, his fingers curled in hers, his gaze on hers. Green and brown eyes locked like two magnets, unable to pull away from each other.


Then, the pain came to her too, suddenly and powerful, tendrils that stretched from the base of her skull to envelop everything in white iron. And in the midst of that pain, a Word. One that Ena could not understand. One so big and so complex that the young Bajoran's sharp mind couldn't quite grasp it.


It was too much.


It hurt too much.


Ena's green eyes opened and, for a second, met Ryan's, a question in hers, concern in his.


Then, amidst the din of the Word still echoing immensely in her brain, Ena heard a hiss.


She felt a chill on her neck. Her heart skipped a beat. Then the next.


Another one.


Her breathing stilled.


Her chest stopped.


And everything went black.



((Ni’ratal Sanctuary, Rakantha Province, Bajor))


Ni'ratal's sanctuary was at the westernmost end of the valley where she was born. Abandoned for decades during the Occupation, nature had taken over and was growing inside and outside its walls, keeping the old stones standing as much as the stones held the plants. Once the few monks who now inhabited the monastery had returned, they had decided to preserve that connection, that bond between Bajor and the Bajorans, and nurture it. Now, archways of red flowers festooned the path to the prayer room. Water ran through the moss on the sides of the walkways. Birds sang with the monks.


And Ena had always loved the place.


But that didn't explain why she was there.


The Tan: You are here because you have died.


The visage and voice were of the Trill Officer in the rescue team. But his eyes were not. Old eyes, age-old, cut from a million stars.


A Prophet.


Ico: Wh-what?


The Andorian officer stepped out from behind a blue-flowered thicket. Small amphibians leapt at his feet, dodging out of his way. The cerulean face was grave, yet there was an unnatural detachment about him, the kind that comes from one who sees the world in a completely different manner than mortals.


The ch’Ranni: The Ico is here, but it is not the right time.


The young Betazoid doctor dipped her hand in the water and let it run through her fingers, her features serene and unperturbed.


The Vossti: Too soon


The other two Prophets chorused her words


The ch’Ranni: Too soon


The Tan: Too soon ::the creature in the body of the security officer tilted his head:: But she already knows the Word


Ena fell to her knees in the damp moss, her green eyes wide open.


The Vossti: She knows the Word. But she does not understand it, too soon. Her objective has not been fulfilled.


The Prophet in blue-skinned man approached and stared at her, eyes as blue as the corona of a young star.


The ch’Ranni: Yes, but she already knows the Maker. And He also knows the Word.


The Vossti: But he hasn't built It either. He doesn't understand It either. He is not of Bajor.


The blond Trill's face was so unnaturally stern that he didn't look like the same person.


The Tan: He is not of Bajor, but he will be, if he makes the proper decisions.


The Vossti: If he listens to the Warden


The ch’Ranni: If they meet the Others.


The Tan: But he has called us. But now is not the time. It is not his time.


The black-eyed Prophet gave a slow nod.


The Vossti: Because the Warden is dead. Too young.


The ch’Ranni: He still needs her, to complete his path. She still has to make her journey.


The Tan: Time can be amended. She still knows the Word


The Vossti: The Maker has asked for it.


The ch’Ranni: He has not, but he will.


The Tan: And when he will ask for it, it would have been done. The circle will be complete, her task fulfilled.


The ch’Ranni: He will not be pleased


The Vossti: But it will be as it has been.


((Cave System, Darime IV))


Isaacs: ::Mumbling,:: I can hear you. Doc’s meds are working. Just need a minute.


Ryan's voice sounded next to her, so close it seemed impossible.


She also needed a minute. Or several. Everything hurt. Her head hurt. And her heart ached, pounding in her chest, a painful tattoo that reminded her she was alive. She was alive when she shouldn't have been. A gift that would pay off in the future.


ch'Ranni: I'll see what I can do with the tricorders.


Vossti: Response


Tan: ::He nodded to Vossti,:: You're the doctor, it's your call. But my gut says that, given their rapid deterioration and current condition, if we don't get them to a hospital in half an hour they're in trouble.


ch'Ranni: ::He glanced at the doctor:: Do what you can to keep them stable.


Vossti: Response


Ena remained silent, but opened her eyes. She opened her eyes and squeeze Ryan's fingers between hers. He squeezed them back. Without understanding. Without realizing. How could he understand if she didn't understand either. She still felt in shock.


She didn't understand.


How could she.


Meanwhile, oblivious to her experience, the world went on.


Tan: Seems like we have a choice. I'm inclined to agree with Vossti; the rope was perilous enough for the three of us just going down, and we were all in a much better condition then. The other option is that we can explore one of these other passages and see if there's a way out through there. Or at least a place to where the interference is less. We don't need much, just a window to call for a transport. ::Turning to Jona,:: Thoughts, Commander?


ch'Ranni: ::He spoke without looking up.:: Yeah, climbing's not an option. ::He paused, and this time did pull his gaze away from his work.:: Wait, what did you say?


Tan: Response


ch'Ranni: You said we need to find a place where there's less interference... a window.


Tan/Vossti: Response


ch'Ranni: Well, it seems like our attackers, whoever they are, have found that. Their transporter seemed to work. Maybe that's the key?


Ryan nodded. 


Tan/Vossti: Response


ch'Ranni: I'm picking up some residual signatures. Can you confirm these readings with Ico's tricorder, Serren? The operational stats are way off from the norm for Federation technology.


Isaacs: Ena doesn’t have a tricorder. ::He spoke quietly and slowly, as if he was relearning how his tongue worked, and his eyes drooped shut while he continued.:: Lost it in the city.


Tan: Response


ch'Ranni: ::Excitedly,:: If we could isolate the mid-range of the frequency band they are using we might be able to daisy-chain the tricorders to boost the comm signal on that specific frequency. We'll need every last ounce of power from all three scanners, though. ::He turned toward Ryan and Ena.:: Isaacs, Ico, if you can hear me, we're gonna get you out of here! Hang on.


Isaacs: I’m not that far gone, sir. ::Not yet, anyway. Ryan took a deep breath and opened his eyes, offering the Andorian a lopsided grin.:: But I appreciate it.


ch'Ranni/Tan/Vossti: Response


There was a small silence, one filled with work and racing minds. Or as fast as they could. Ena forced her body to work, to slide into a sitting position. The effort was more than he expected for her shocked mind and when she leaned back against the wall she slid slightly. Squeezing Ryan's fingers between hers again.


Isaacs: Here—::he held out two combadges::—they’re Jack and Solomon’s. You could strip out the power cells for extra juice. ::He glanced toward Ena, his voice soft and melancholic as he added,:: I think they’d like the idea they helped get us out.


With more effort than she expected, Ena looked up and her green eyes met Ryan's brown ones, dark and sad, mourning a huge loss.


Ico: Y-Yes. ::She croaked.:: They... they would have liked it.


ch'Ranni/Tan/Vossti: Response


The young human Cadet slumped back against the cavern wall, and his fingers curl a little tighter around Ena’s.


Isaacs: We could crack the casing on someone’s badge to trigger the distress signal. Boost that to your ship, and they’ll snatch us right up.


Ena said nothing and simply snuggled closer against Ryan, hoping...wishing, that what she had seen was just a dream, a mad snapshot of a parasitized brain and an aching body. Not an omen. Or an actual encounter with the Prophets.


ch'Ranni/Tan/Isaacs/Vossti: Response


Cadet Ico Ena

4th Year Cadet

Starfleet Academy


simmed by


Lt. Alieth

Chief Science Officer


USS Gorkon NCC-82293


Image Collective Facilitator /Art Director

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