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[2005: NOV-DEC] One percent


Ajescent

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*Boing*

Its just an idea, nothing solid, might not even be ready for end of deadline.

[modedit]Updated title.[/modedit]

Edited by FltAdml. Wolf
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One percent

The Commander fixed his visor and scratched his itching nose, a task made more difficult by the bitter cold setting in on his fingers. The shuttle was dead, the instruments were dead, and so were half the away team and that was only the beginning.

Trying to gain a positive from an otherwise grave situation, the Commander humoured himself by watching the breath from his mouth freeze in the cold air, the weather was so cold he could actually see little ice particles form from his breath.

‘Any luck with the communications system sir?’

The Commander blinked as though being caught in the middle of a lewd act. Looking over to his right, he saw the last remaining member of his away team, a young Betazoid whom as far as he was concerned? Was as cute as a button but just as intelligent...not that he would ever think that in front of her…

‘No Ensign, I’m having a little trouble with the cold.’ He lied.

‘Right sir…’ The Ensign nodded with a tone that suggested she did not believe him.

‘Amazing first mission huh?’ He said in a vain attempt to lighten the mood. ‘Usually we try to lower the Ensigns in on missions where most of your away team don’t bite it-’ wrong choice of words…he concluded.

The look of disappointment on her face showed she agreed with him.

‘Don’t worry.’ He said, trying again to improve her mood. ‘I’ll soon have this fixed-’

No sooner did he say his words did the console spring to life with static coming from the speakers…

‘Ah-ha!’ He said proudly, hinting an “I told you so” look to the Ensign as they gained access to environmental controls as well as communications…

‘Commander Vol’Darin to the Beacon, come in Beacon…’

The Commander said as he switched through the channels in hope of picking up a response.

‘Vol’Darin to the Beacon, do you read me?’

He looked over to the disappointed Ensign who had gotten her hopes up when the console sprung to life but had now returned to her down-trodden self as after 30 seconds, it was becoming apparent that their calls were going out to no one, when suddenly-

‘This Lieutenant Hirsh of the Beacon receiving you Commander, how are you enjoying the surface?’ Hirsh asked, what he thought was a reasonable question.

‘Hey Hirsh…Umm…’ The Commander mused, searching for a witty comeback as he sucked his teeth. ‘Not very well…’

‘Why is that sir?’

‘Well…without warning, the weather changed from Tropical to Arctic, the Shuttle is now inoperable and oh! I think our hosts might be cannibals, Mr Hirsh…’ the Commander said with a sarcastic smile to himself.

‘Why do you think that sir?’ Hirsh asked with under stable concern.

‘Well it could be because with the exception of Ms Benton and myself? They’ve eaten the entire away team…I’m not sure…’

‘What?!’ Hirsh shouted, unable to believe his ears.

‘Funny thing…it seems the weather affects the mentality of the people here…for the half of the year when it’s tropical? They are normal happy people but when it snows they turn into flesh eating monsters…who knew?!’ The Commander said half laughing.

‘Really?’

‘Yeah, I know…I was shocked too when I found out…’ The Commander replied tastelessly, much to the annoyance of his fellow strandee. ‘If its not too much trouble, Ms Benton and I would love for you guys to scoot on over and get us…’

‘Umm…that’s not entirely possible sir…’ The Lieutenant replied uncomfortably.

‘And why not?’

‘Well…whilst you were down there…we were inexplicably attacked by an unknown ship…’

The Commander frowned, that was not what he was hoping to hear.

‘Is everyone ok?’

‘The ship took heavy damages, almost everything is out, the Captain is in sickbay…rumours are that he might not make it…to make things worse…we have reasons to believe our attackers may be coming back for round two…it would take at least 24 hours to get the ship in near working condition…’

‘Right…’ The Commander sighed, if he had been on board the ship, he would now be in charge and be tasked with saving the life of everyone on board but from the looks of things his situation did not seem so bad… ‘How soon can you come get us?’

‘Engineering predicts they may have impulse back online within the hour, on impulse it should take an hour to get back to the planet…we have nothing faster than that…

‘I did mention the cannibals right?’ The Commander frowned.

‘Yes sir you did.’ The Lieutenant sighed. ‘But there’s nothing we can do from up here…best you can do is hold out for a couple of hours…’

‘You make it sound like a walk in the park…ok Hirsh…see you in two hours…over and out…’

The Commander ended the transmission and smiled brightly at the Ensign; rubbing his hands together he mentally assessed the situation and their likely hood of surviving, but opted not to air out his findings as he figured out their chances.

‘Not good is it?’ Benton asked quietly.

‘Huh? The Commander replied, momentarily forgetting he was in the company of a Betazoid…perhaps referring to her as unintelligent was not such a good idea… ‘Not good at all Ensign…’ The Commander said with a genuine smile…

‘Thought so…’ She sighed dishearteningly.

‘Well…that communiqué took about half the reserved energy the shuttle had left, which means we have about an hour of life support and environment control before we lose everything…then I’d say…based on the strength of the shuttle’s hull…the weather, our suits…? I’d say we should be able to last about 30 minutes before we freeze to death…thus leaving us with 30 whole minutes before the Beacon gets here…’

‘Oh joy…’ She replied seemingly losing the will to live.

‘But of course that’s if the Cannibals out there don’t rip us to shred before all that happens…’

‘Yes…thank you Commander…’ She frowned at their prospecting death.

‘Look on the bright side…at least we get to choose how we die…either we freeze to death or we get eaten alive.’ The Commander said chirpily.

‘Isn’t there an option where we get rescued at the last minute and end up living happily ever after?’ The Ensign asked, not even believing her own words.

‘Umm…I don’t think so…’ He replied stroking his chin, wondering if heard any of the last minute…’Have you your phaser?’ He asked calmly.

‘Yes sir…why may I ask?’

‘Well…you didn’t think I was going to let them eat us without a fight did you?’

‘Perhaps we may not need to…’ She said as her eyes began to widen with delirium.

‘How exactly?’ The Commander replied, raising an eyebrow.

‘The Beacon could save us!’

‘You did hear every thing that was said a few minutes ago right?’ He asked in an attempt to double check his standpoint.

‘Yeah…but, but- we can’t just die like this! Someone or something has to save us!’ She shouted hysterically and began pacing up and down the frozen shuttle.

The Commander paused a second to watch her as she ranted and raved hysterically, on the one hand she was facing imminent death and deserved her moment of panic on the other…? She was wasting precious air; the necessary had to be done. With a collected sigh, the Commander pulled her to himself and as controlled as possible, slapped her across the face and in return she gasped and blinked in amazement as she returned to her senses.

‘Feeling better?’ He asked calmly.

‘Yes thank you, I needed that.’ She replied, trying to reshuffle her face.

‘On the one hand, there’s a 99% chance of us dying here and only a one percent chance of error going either way…’

‘On the other hand?’

‘Huh? Oh sorry…“there is no other hand,” there is only the hand with the 99% chance of us dying.’ The Commander shrugged haplessly.

‘Couldn’t you at least say there was a one percent chance of surviving or something?’

‘Well…there isn’t really but yeah…if you want…we could say that…’

‘Good…’ She sighed heavily, suddenly looking motivated. ‘As long as there is a one percent chance? There is a possibility everything will be fine…’

‘Umm…ok…’ The Commander replied sounding confused by her sudden motivation. ‘I expect our hosts will be here shortly…I gather they weren’t too pleased by our departure from their place.

‘Yeah…especially since they went out of their way to invite us to dinner…’ Benton replied, figuring it was best to adopt her Commander’s look on things.

‘No one said anything about us being on the menu-’

No sooner did he speak, did loud noises begin to echo through the shuttle as though some thing heavy was banging on the hull of it, with unrelenting force the unknown something eagerly on the shuttle.

‘What is it?’ Benton asked nervously, pointing her phaser in the direction of the bangs.

‘I’ll give you one guess…’ The Commander replied sarcastically.

The pair stood side by side as the bangs grew louder and louder…oh what they wouldn’t give to have the Beacon beaming them up right about now…but maybe not yet, because without warning…the banging stopped…

‘What the…’ The Commander asked, narrowing his eyes with curiosity.

‘Do you think it’s gone?’ Benton asked hopefully, clinging on desperately to that one percent.

‘Not friggin likely-’ The Commander thought to himself but might just as well have said it out as he was after all standing next to a Betazoid. ‘Can you sense anything?’

‘No sir.’ She replied shaking her head. ‘The snow is affecting my senses.’

‘I’m going to go outside and check.’ The Commander said suddenly.

‘Are you nuts?!’ She replied, momentarily forgetting who she was talking to. ‘If the snow doesn’t kill you, that THING will- and…’

She paused noticing her Commander looking at her curiously.

‘What?’

‘Aww…Ensign…I didn’t know you cared.’ He replied in his typical bland voice.

‘Hm! ‘She retorted and tutted at him when it became apparent why he wanted to go outside. ’Wait a minute…’

‘What?’

‘You are going to get yourself killed…’ She replied sternly. ’You are going to get yourself killed to save me…’

‘Don’t be stupid Ensign; you’re cute but not cute enough for me to kill myself over you.’

‘Nonsense!’ She shouted in return as the Commander looked at her with a raised eyebrow as though waiting for an explanation. ‘Um- no wait, that was not what I meant- I didn’t mean I was cute enough for you to kill yourself- I meant…nonsense that you think I’m cute…no that’s not it either-bah you know what I meant.’ She concluded looking deflated her own head hurting from the attempted explanation.

‘Umm…no…I was actually trying to remind you that you are speaking to a superior officer and as a result you should be careful of how you speak to me Ensign.’ He added the “Ensign” more as an emphasis of his point than anything else.

‘Oh right…I’m sorry sir.’ She said clearing her throat.

‘And as your superior…what I say tends to go…’ He said with a rarely heard stern tone to his voice. ‘Yes the plan was to go quietly into the great unknown…if I did that…there would be less people breathing the air in here, thus leaving more for one person to survive on…at least one of us will stand a greater chance of surviving until the Beacon arrives…’

He smiled what he assumed to be a genuine smile designed to comfort her and remind her everything would work out for the best, but it did the opposite as she crashed to her knees with tears streaming down her face. With a smile to himself, the Commander bent his knees so that he was face to face with her.

‘Look on the bright side…at least that one percent will increase ten folds…right?’ He asked with a smile.

‘No! I’m happy with the one percent! I won’t let you sacrifice yourself for me…’ She replied wrapping her arms around him, not wanting to let him go.

‘Well…I’m sorry Ensign…that decision is not yours to make…‘ He replied with a smile as he struggled to take her arms from around his neck. ‘As your Commanding officer…I order you to stay here…don’t worry…it’ll be fine…it’ll be just like a walk in the park…’

‘No…’ She whispered quietly as he made his way towards the shuttle doors.

She read his emotions, but there was nothing…no fear nothing…it was as if he’d planned this moment already…why didn’t she see it? She looked at him one last time as he braced himself to exit the shuttle, winking at her, he stepped outside.

‘No!!’ She yelled, chasing after him but before she could reach him the doors closed behind him.

Trying every thing she could to open the doors, nothing would work. She gasped as she heard something that sounded not too dissimilar to the fizzling sound of a phaser being fired, what was happening?

She rested her ears against the door to try to listen but was forced to step back by the sudden glare of melting metal, before she could realise what was happening, it was too late, he was sealing her in with his phaser fire, so that she could not get out and he could not get in.

It only took a minute for him to completely seal her in and then the disturbing silence took over…but now sooner did that happen did it get broken by a series of ferocious screeches and a barge of phaser fire…she counted approximately ten shots before a final feeble one fired as a final salute, not to the approaching danger but to himself, Because from what she recalled there were hundreds of these people on the planet…and from the noise outside…it was safe to assume a majority of them were outside the shuttle and the lack of screams from the Commander suggests he did not live to suffer the painful experience.

The deadly silence returned…

If she couldn’t sense anything before, she sure could now…hundreds upon hundreds of beings all outside the shuttle craving one thing…fresh meat…was she to make to make her last stand here too? With a sigh of reconciliation she recognised the fact that if she were a Klingon? Today would be a good day to die.

She picked up her phaser and wondered how many she could take before she was either killed or help arrived…with only 45 minutes of the originally predicted two hours passed, it was becoming more apparent that the former would occur long before anything else.

With deep anticipation, she waited as the things on the other side slowly began to surround her, she could hear them “quietly” surrounding the shuttle, with her heart in her mouth she waited for it… the best possible point of entry seemed to be the windshield, realising this she aimed her phaser there, she could see their blood stained faces eyeing her wondering which bit to eat first.

Concluding she was bored of waiting for her imminent death, she fired the first shot at the creature that had been grinning at her continuously the whole time, not only breaking the glass but shooting him right between the eyes. The blast from the phaser was powerful enough to send him flying into the waiting crowd who promptly jumped on him devouring him whole, whilst the others rushed through the broken window in an attempt to rush the seemingly defenceless Ensign.

Not wanting to go down without a fight, she randomly fired into the crowd taking out anyone stupid enough to come close, occasionally using her arms to fight off her aggressors, but there were too many as they slowly began to overpower but not enough to get close enough to attack, still with the fighting spirit she fired unabashedly into the crowd, but eventually the inevitable happened…

The bravest one, leapt at her, knocking the weapon from her hand leaving her defenceless, though she still tried to fight them off with her fists, they were not as effective, eventually the will to live escaped her as she succumbed to the horrible truth, that one percent was too little to sustain them both…

Edited by Ajescent
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