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Standfast... The Tempest has Arrived!


Deven Nehir
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It was the same dream he’d had over and over again. Night after night, he always awoke in a pool of sweat, and sometimes blood. The latest laceration to his arm was healing in good fashion, but he still didn’t know how it got there. Jameson stood and gathered himself after this night’s nightmare. He didn’t understand. There were times in his life that weren’t the best that might have left a mark so to speak on his soul. He stood in the mirror looking at his face. It’d grown a bit wearier as of late.

We all have those, don’t we?

He splashed some water over his face as he thought to himself, only the light of the sink area to fill that small portion of the room.

We all have things we can’t escape, right?

He let out a long breath. Making his way over to the replicator, he went to order, but couldn’t make the words come. He couldn’t think at all, not even in the slightest. This nightmare was probably the worst one yet.

He picked up his commbadge off the table next to his rack. “Ensign Jameson to Counselor Latrelle…”

The voice on the other end was more than likely the only comfort he could receive as of late. “ Go ahead Ensign…”

He paused for a moment… “Sir, it happened again. I need to speak with you as soon as you have the time.”

The counselor replied with an unexpected one, “Most certainly, why don’t you come now.”

“Sir, It’s three in the morning…” Jameson didn’t know why he said that. After all, he was the one who called the counselor.

“I understand that Ensign, but to be quite frank, I believe you’re passed the point of appointments. Just get down here.”

“Aye Sir…” The young man stood up from the bed and began to don his uniform. He looked back in the mirror one last time, but what he saw made his gut sink. In the mirror looking back at him was a face devoid of flesh, with a dark mist surrounding it. The mist would suddenly break from time to time with bright reds and oranges, and the skinless face would be revealed. It seemed like it was there for an eternity, but as he fell to the floor in fear, the face was gone.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Counselor Latrelle brought up the Ensigns profile on his PADD and sat with a cup of coffee at his desk. He had been working with the young man for quite some time in regards to recurring nightmares and daydreams. It had affected his performance at his duty post, ultimately resulting in mandated retraining and counseling. He pulled up a section about the man’s childhood and saw that it was blank. He wasn’t sure just what the young man was hiding, but this evening, he intended to find out.

He moved over to where the couch was situated near the window. He pulled the hypnotic inducers from their case and set them on the arm of the couch. The door chimed.

“Come” he said as he sat back at the desk.

The young Ensign entered the room and sat on the couch that he was so accustomed to these days. The counselor could see the weariness on the man’s face, and could feel the utter fear that radiated from every pour of his body.

“Derek, I’m going to speak freely here, and as you know, you’re always welcome to do the same… But you look like [...]…” he stood and moved towards the couch to take a seat.

“Sir, I, I don’t know what the hell is happening to me. It happened again tonight, the nightmare. The same one I’ve been having for the past three months. And, well something else happened right before I left my quarters.” He was starting to tense up. He was nervous and fearful of the words about to exit his mouth.

“Go on…”

“Well, right before I left, I saw myself from my dream in the mirror. It was, well it was as real as my frigging hand.” He held his hand up as if to demonstrate.

Putting the ensign’s hand back from whence it came, “Take it easy. I assure you, it wasn’t as real as you think it was. The worst case scenario that we talked about last time, remember that? Well It’s happening. The imagined is starting to become reality. Whatever this is that’s bothering you is eating you whole Derek. I want to change your therapy slightly. I want to try hypnosis…”

Ensign Jameson didn’t really know what to say. On one hand he became defensive and didn’t want any part of what the good counselor was suggesting, but on the other, he knew that the problem was getting worse, and he himself wasn’t going to be enough to solve the problem. “Alright… Alright let’s do it…”

“Okay, just lie back on the couch and make yourself comfortable. I’m going to apply these hypnotic inducers. No pain. No stress. Just free your mind for a moment.” He placed the inducers, one on each temple. “Now… Take me to your dream. To the images in your mind. What’s bothering you?”

((Everything flashes to white then to black, and soon the room is filled with the images))

The room was suddenly transformed to a pasture with small children playing with farm animals. They were running about, and oddly enough, the counselor could pick out the Ensign among the others. This was his child hood. At once the sky flashed, and a visible division could be seen over the land. On one half of the division, the sun peaked over the horizon and loomed over fog filled valleys. The red orange and pink glow of the fluorescent wonder made him squint a bit as he squat down next to the young Derek. He looked all around in the area that spread behind the two. Singing birds, tall lush forest, and a cool, comforting breeze blew through the branches of the lumbering giants. He slowly turned back to the land that lay before them, but it was far darker.

In the distance lay a blood red moon, quite vast and ominous. It hung in a starless sky, overlooking vast caverns and deep crevices. The land was pock-marked with ages of ware and tare. The trees that are ever present bare no foliage, no life in their many hands. They stood tall, broken and barren. It was an unforgiving place, a place that Counselor Latrelle cared not to wander. In the distance quite a few dark figures could be seen, standing, striking down the other children. They only marched forth in the dark part of the land, but the darkness was coming closer and closer with each passing second.

The child version of Derek all at once was swept away by a tall man, more than likely the boy’s father, and placed nearby in a small rock cavern overlooking the once graceful pasture. The tall man turned to the Counselor and addressed him, “Standfast! The tempest has arrived! We must hold steady and fight for our freedom!” The counselor tried to speak to the man, but his words were lost in the now fast moving winds. The darkness was inching closer and closer, and soon enough it hit him. He looked up towards the darkness to slowly see the moon disappearing behind a vast wall of some sort. It was massive with all sorts of green luminescence and a mixture of metals.

He tried to walk forward, but he felt so heavy. It was a feeling that will never bare an explanation of its presence. He looked down at the road where he stood. There was not a visible line per say, but in the grass where the two territories met there was a sort of energy. The light side of the pasture behind him was vibrant with many color stones and grass; small life scuttling about its luscious surface while the other side a blacker, bleaker area with no life upon its surface. He lifted a hesitant foot the light and staggered to the other side. He pulled the other foot in and began his journey into the dark towards what he surmised was Ensign Jameson’s harbinger of fear.

You could see the wind. It was a dark haze that flew around everything, engulfing it. It was so strong that Latrelle had to bare forward to withstand it. The wind formed around his shape leaving trails in the distance, blowing fiercely. He looked down at his arms only to see his uniform stripping off in shreds, followed by the very skin of his arms as the wind blew more and more intensely. He had the feeling that he’d travelled farther than even the Ensign had prior to tonight, but it was his lack of fear that kept him safe. He was beginning to see the figures that were once distant. He recognized the figures… They were Borg. He saw the tall man, Derek’s father, standing next to one of the drones who’d assimilated him, bringing him to his ultimate end. It was all at once the Counselor knew what was plaguing the young man.

((The room returns to normal as he removes his own hypnotic inducers.))

Ensign Jameson sat upright on the couch, no realizing just what he was afraid of. He knew that there were parts of his past that he didn’t know too much about. He also knew that remnants of his family, every now and again, would speak of the Great Storm that destroyed his home-world. He never made the connection, was never strong enough to make the connection on his own, until now. “I know what plagues me…”

Latrelle didn’t know how to relate to any of this. A whole childhood taken from the young man by such undeserving beings; a childhood and family, gone in the blink of an eye. He had been running from the memories for such a long time that he’d forgotten most of the remaining memories. They all lay suppressed and dormant for so long. It wasn’t until the ship’s first encounter with the Borg did any of the young man’s troubles begin. He should have taken the hint.

Latrelle sat forward and embraced Derek. “As do I Derek. Derek, your homeworld was assimilated… The Great Storm, it was all the Borg, all along… I’m so sorry.”

---

Ensign Viktor Lanius

Intelligence Officer

USS Apollo, NCC-71669

Edited by FltAdml. Wolf
Adding Mar/Apr prefix.
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