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VANESSA DRISCOLL - Farewell To A Sister


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((USS Discovery-C, Security Office))

::The young security officer sat in front of the console. With a soft movement of her hand, she banned a rebellious curl of her obsidian-coloured hair behind her left ear. Now that the Discovery was about to dock, she had managed to set up a plan to ensure security. Even in the case of shoreleave, a minimum contingent of security officers was required to remain on duty, while most of the crew could enjoy the pleasures of some time off duty. Now as the temporary executive of the new Chief of Security, she had thought she would organize that in advance – probably one of the last acts as her exec, as the return to the Starbase not meant repairs for the ship, but also replacement of the crew and there would almost certainly be a more experienced security officer who would take over that position. After all, she was still fresh out of the Academy and had just finished her first mission as an Ensign. A last glance over the duty schedule and then she sent the plan to Lieutenant Amman.::

::Vanessa leaned back and nodded contentedly. There was a bit of time left, before the ship would actually be docked and the crew could head on over to the Starbase, so she checked the latest news that had come in. The conversation with Saxena, her Trill roommate had stirred up a sad and unsettling thought that the Discovery and all her crew must have been declared missing. And that would mean that all the families had most likely been informed , which was almost the same as declaring them dead.::

::Since then, pictures of the scene ran constantly through her mind – her mum, dad and her brother back on the colony world Toral IV receiving the information. Not knowing that she was actually alive and well, the idea of them mourning for her was almost unbearable. Especially the thought of her beloved brother almost broke her heart.::

DRISCOLL: ::whispering to herself:: So it’s true… they planned a memorial service.

::She quickly skimmed the short report from the Starbase about the service in commemoration of the Discovery. As she read that not only Starfleet personnel, but also many relatives of the allegedly dead crew had arrived at the station, her heart started racing.::

DRISCOLL: oO My family… what if they are here on the Starbase! Oo

::She was absolutely sure that her mum and dad and especially her brother would have travelled to the Starbase for that, if they had been informed about it. Toral IV was not too far away and with a shuttle they could have arrived here within a short period of time.::

::Excited about the prospect of seeing her brother again, she checked the lists of all the persons who had arrived at the Starbase as well as the lists of people who were already staying on the Starbase for some time. She double and triple checked the lists, but none showed the name of her family or at least one family member. It took a while, but when she was absolutely sure that she hadn’t just skipped the name, she fell back into the chair and stared at the ceiling.::

DRISCOLL: oO What if they didn’t get the information about the memorial. Oo

::So she checked again whether the families had been informed and found a little report that the families had been informed. There would have been enough time for her family to come to the memorial.::

::Her head braced on her hand, she starred at the console. Vanessa couldn’t understand it. What could be the reason for her family not being here on the station. The young woman couldn’t just think of any reason why they couldn’t have come, unless they had been forgotten to be informed by some sort of mistake.::

::As she tried to make up an explanation in her mind, she suddenly noticed a little blinking number at the padd, showing her that she had received an unread message. Knitting her brow she opened the message and stared at the sender with wide eyes. The message was from her brother. As soon as the Discovery had established contact with the station, the messages which had been sent to them at the time when their comm was down, were delivered. Checking on the date she saw that it had been sent only a few hours ago – at a time, when nobody here had known that the Discovery-C was on its way back and the crew was alive.::

::With a shaking hand she opened the message and read a message her brother had sent to his sister, believing that she was lost somewhere out the in the black vastness of space.::

MICHEAL DRISCOLL (message): :: As she opened the message, she realized that it was an audio recording and heard her brother’s voice:: Hello my dear Vany!

I’d never thought that I would have to send a message like that. A message that I send out, not knowing where you are, what happened and whether you are… you will ever be able to read it. Some weeks ago, we received the message – and I could not believe it. I was out helping Dad on the fields when Mum came out to the farmyard.

She was just standing there, her whole body shaking… and I knew. I instantly knew… It sounds sort of strange, but when I saw her standing there, the tears rolling down her cheeks, I knew that you … ::pause::

I ran back to the house to our mum and she just locked her arms around me, whispering in my ear that you were dead. Dad also came back to the farmyard, he only remained standing a few metres away.

It is really hard to bring back the images of that day. It is hard for me to think back to that moment and still be strong enough to write those lines … to you. Dad just thinks that this is nonsense. Sometimes I really would like to… ::pausing, Michael took a deep breath:: but this is not about my anger today. This is… my way of saying farewell to you.

It sounds strange, but do you remember us sitting out there just outside the farm on clear summer nights when we were younger? We were both looking up at the sky with its endless number of sparkling stars. You sometimes said that you would like to travel to one of the stars pointing your fingers at one of those many sparkling dots. I always loved those nights, when you told me your stories of what you would be finding there….

After the message arrived, I went out and looked at the stars and I somehow knew, that even if you… even if you are no longer there as the person I knew, you are still up there… somewhere. And I decided to send you this message.

Today we received the information that Starfleet plans a memorial service at the Starbase, but… Dad wouldn’t agree to go there. It would just be a journey of a couple of hours… ::a deep sigh interrupting the audio transmission:: Over the last years, he turned into a cold-hearted, emotionless man – even more after you had left us to go back to earth. ::Her brother’s voice sounding both hard and sad at the same time::

Mother and I tried to convince him first, I shouted at him and told him, he could go to hell and I would go on my own, but he just wouldn’t change his mind. :: A loud bang could be heard as if something hard hit the table::

I really didn’t know what to do. Of course, I could just have travelled there on my own, but… Mum got desperate, but he wouldn’t let her go and I just couldn’t leave her alone at home with him in her condition.

So…. This is my way to say farewell to you, my little Vany! And it’s even harder than I could ever have imagined. I will always keep you in my heart. I love you … wherever you may be now. And whenever I look at our sky at night, I… ::his voice getting thinner and breathy:: I will think of you.

::As Vanessa heard her brother’s voice, her tears started to flow. She was just sitting in the chair of the security office, not being able to say or do anything, but a soft and husky::

DRISCOLL: I love you, too.

::She logged out of the console. Without looking left nor right, she ran out of the office. She was happy that most of the crew were already preparing to leave the ship, so she didn’t really meet many crewmembers on her way back to her room.::


Ensign Vanessa Driscoll

Security Officer

USS Discovery-C

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