Previous Next

Scared But At Least It Not The Borg

Posted on Wed Nov 15th, 2023 @ 11:02am by Nollel Livaam (*) & Evelyn Reynolds

Mission: Fractures
Location: SS Mary Rose Prime
2370 words - 4.7 OF Standard Post Measure

Nollel's eyes slowly blinked open, greeted by the sterile hum of the operations center that was familiar to say the least, this had been where she had been before she had ended in the future. She stretched her limbs, feeling the gentle tug of the ships gravity as she sat up from the slump she was in. Panic welled up as she realized where she had previously been on the very same ship with Jaxx and the Borg.

The console panels blinked with eerie quiet, the screens displaying critical data, but devoid of any presence. Her heart raced, and she reached for her comm unit and opened up a comms channel to sickbay. “Livaam to Sickbay.” She said quietly hoping there was someone there.

For the past half an hour, Evelyn had sat at her desk and stared at nothing. It was not the most comforting of decisions, tantamount to hiding at a time when she was very evidently required elsewhere, but there was a very precise and delicate process she had undertaken to control her panic since accepting her change in circumstance and she was currently struggling to maintain it. She had been pointing out since first gaining access to crew files that the Mary Rose had a remarkable tenacity for theoretical nightmares but experiencing one first-hand was much more disconcerting than any mission report could convey. She had been with StarFleet for years, logic dictated she should be a little more prepared for the unexpected, and yet she felt anything but. It wasn't just the magnitude of the calamity; it was the uncertainty, and the intense fear of seeking clarification, surrounding her own perception of events. Hiding in her office wasn't her proudest moment but Evelyn had spent the last thirty minutes pouring ever last shred of energy into not losing her entire goddamn mind.

The voice over comms scared her more than it should have.

And it took her a split second to respond. Part of her indecision had involved a lack of attempt to verify that others were missing, something that would become a thorn of guilt once she'd calmed down enough to reinstate personal expectations. When she had blinked one minute in a turbolift and recovered moments later from a bout of dizziness that revealed she was back in her sickbay, the doctor had jumped to the immediate assumption that she'd succumbed to a dissociative episode. She was less certain of that now, having taken all her vitals and relived the sequence of events over and over. The invasion of another's presence was jarring, but it did serve as a slight equilibrium reset. Slowly, she rose from her chair.

"Sickbay here. Are you all right, Nollel?"

Swallowing her fear, she waited for someone to speak back trying to fathom the situation of what had happened. Questions swirled in her mind as she grappled with the unsettling reality that she might be the only person on the ship in the vast, silent expanse of space. “Evelyn? No… something strange happened. The… I was… somewhere else.” She whispered into the comms unit.

In many ways, it should have been a relief, or at least a confirmation of actuality. Evelyn wasn't sure how much she trusted herself not to invent confirmation bias under extreme duress, however, though if she was honest, Nollel was not a person she would have expected to represent manifested paranoia. "I think something similar happened to me," the doctor confessed. "Can you get to sickbay so I can check you over?"

Nollel nodded before she realised that it would not be able to be seen. "Yes," Nollel confirmed firmly before disconnecting the communication. She took a deep breath and stepped out of the control room. Nothing looked amiss other than a few stray items on the floor like someone had dropped them mid-using but there was nothing out of the ordinary. She arrived at sickbay not much after and stopped dead as she took in her appearance in the small mirror that was close to the entrance. She certainly looked like she had spent the day crawling around in the dark.

By the time the other woman reached Sickbay, Evelyn had dragged herself from behind her desk and stood in silence in the middle of the familiar treatment area. With both arms wrapped around herself, she lacked her usual poise and yet forced herself to rally somewhat as Nollel's arrival at least gave her another problem to focus on. "You look like you've been through it."

Nollel nodded. She had certainly been through something and then some. “I … yeah.” She said running a hand through her hair noticing the tangles and just pulled out a hair band and pulled her blonde give up into a ponytail. “You look like it too.” She said back.

For once, Evelyn didn't disappear entirely behind her professional veneer. Rather than refute the observation, she simply picked up a tricorder and quietly scanned the other woman. "Where did you go?" As she slowly unravelled the possible tangent that suggested everything she'd experienced was legitimate, Evelyn realised that her own experience wasn't something Nollel would find any more comforting than whatever had shaken her up this badly. That, as much as anything else, was enough of a prompt to rise above the panic and start seeking solutions.

Nollel span a little on the spot at the man staffed of a an her before she stopped moving to let her do her job properly. “The future. The ship had crashed.” She explained quietly. “Me and Jaxx were there.” She had not been alone then and she was not alone now.

"Izriel was with you?" That stopped the doctor short for a moment, frozen mid-gesture to consider the information before resuming her work. "I haven't seen him. I haven't seen anyone." Focusing intently on the tricorder's display, Evelyn fought for the familiarity of the sense of composure that others often labelled as aloof and was immediately unsuccessful. "Without knowing the history of the ship, I'd say I had the reverse experience. Quite a few of the others were there," she continued, evasive with names. Snapping the device closed, the ex-Starfleet officer burrowed deep into reservoirs of practicality and activated the comm. channel. "Reynolds to Gregnol." The slight crackle of static, whilst partially expected, challenged her resolve as she tried again. "Reynolds to Ford." Her hand clenched around the tricorder as, once again, her request was met with silence.

“No one else is here.” Nollel confirmed which meant that what was happening to them was happening to everyone. “Well the ship was Starfleet for many years so it could have been at any point” Nollel nodded and let out a long breath as she tried to think clearly. “First point of call is you pass me that tricorder so I can scan you back as I am fine.” Nollel said kindly holding out her hand expertly.

Ordinarily, Evelyn would have balked at the intrusion. There was a slight hypocrisy to it, perhaps, but there had never been a need to trust outside medical opinion growing up, not when her father was more than capable of acting as the family's physician. Now, she dealt with it when required but not without some measure of discomfort. With any luck, it would take some time for the crew to realise she was a resolute failure at practising what she preached.

Under the circumstances, however, the doctor relented and handed over the tricorder. "You said you were with Izriel, right? Were the pair of you separated?" For good measure, Evelyn lifted her face towards the ceiling and spoke up. "Reynolds to Lonn."

Only familiar static.

Nollel had hoped the man would respond but she knew deep down that he would not. They had not reappeared together but the pair had been together and she had reacted to the Borg head and found him gone before she had returned. “We were together before we got a fright. He disappeared first and then I came here.” Nollel said as she started to scan the woman.

"Did you see anyone at all on your way here?" Though not entirely ready to abandon the possibility that this was all just a figment of her own fractured mind, Evelyn found respite in a more practised sense of practicality and determination. Even if she was going crazy, she could be methodical about it and the next logical step seemed to be to figure out who the hell was running the ship, starting with whether or not it was still actively traveling and whether someone was actually at the helm. "We should probably check the Bridge. Where I was..." The doctor's brow furrowed. "Most of the Bridge crew was also there." Her eyes caught Nollel's. "Including our pilot."

Nollel shook her head. She had seen no one since she had returned and the system had not said anyone was onboard until she and Evelyn had appeared. "No one at all so we need to head to the bridge and see what is happening. The ship has a lot of automation." She said trying to sound positive as she looked at the tricorder. "Healthy enough." She said holding it out to the woman to look at the scans better.

Resisting the urge to scrutinise her readings, finding herself disinterested for the time being in knowing one way or another if she was functioning normally, Evelyn nodded once and then turned to gather a makeshift medkit. "Our first priority should be to find a secure place to bring the ship to a stop. Automation will only get us so far and certainly won't replenish fuel supplies if we keep...disappearing."

“The Rangers will be nearby. If we can contact them we should be okay.” Nollel surmised going into emergency mode. She was best under pressure like this her mind going into over drive as she remembered what happened before the adventure in the future. “We need to establish how long we have been gone.” She added as she went to a computer console to check.

"There's no guaranteeing it won't happen again." Evelyn balked at the acknowledgement, still unwilling to place all her faith in the legitimacy of the situation. If this was her mind's way of unravelling, though, the only way to deal with it seemed to be to follow along. Grabbing up the last of her supplies, she checked the chronometer over the office door and released a shaky breath. "Let's go."

The trip to the Bridge had been made in brittle silence, both women being impatient enough to reach their destination that they reached a mutual agreement not to speak without actually arranging it out loud. As the turbolift hissed open to reveal, as expected, an entirely empty command centre, Evelyn peered hesitantly into the room before pulling out her tricorder and running a brief scan. She didn't elaborate yet what she was checking for but the frown on her forehead suggested she had potentially found it.

Nollel bored of the silence moved to the flight control console and looked it over. The ship was in its orbit around the pirate base as if the pilot had just stepped away for seconds. "We seem to be fine. I cannot even tell how long we have been gone." She moved to the next console and started to look that over to try and make sense of it.

"If we are fortunate, not very long at all." Stepping carefully around the space, Evelyn paused to scan in several locations, each being the last place she had seen one of their missing crewmates prior to temporal adjustment. It would take a great deal more data for her to draw any conclusions but intelligent speculation was not entirely unreasonable at this point. "There are readings here that I can't make sense of yet. Our initial problems started in the grotto, was there ever any progress on determining the cause?"

“Nope. No one ever tracked it down as it disappeared.” Nollel moved back to the defunct science console and sighed softly as she tried to work out how long it had been since they had disappeared. “This almost seems like we are trapped in a moment.” She admitted making her own speculation.

"Well, it certainly seems to have reappeared." As she stared at the tricorder's readings, Evelyn felt a stab of unusual loneliness, the realisation that she was possibly the closest thing they had to a Science specialist at the moment unless they could track down Cassie. Tachyon analysis had never been a particular focus though, judging by current data, they were going to have to upskill themselves in a hurry. "If we're safely in orbit, we should try to track down the source. Unless you want to stay here," the doctor looked up, years of practise masking how daunting she found the prospect. So far, there was no evidence that proximity to the grotto made any difference to the disappearances but Evelyn wasn't keen to subject the other woman to an increased risk of repeating whatever had shaken her up so badly the first time. "Someone needs to watch the internal sensors anyway."

Nollel thought through her options quickly and shook her head. “I think we should stay together.” Nollel said softly. She did not want to be alone again after the Borg incident. It was going to haunt her dreams for a while if they ever got out of there.

"Time to gear up then." Evelyn didn't argue, fooled herself into believing it was for Nollel's benefit when she was no more in a rush to entertain her own solitude again. With the threat of another event looming over them, even the slightest chance that she wouldn't be flung somewhere entirely on her own seemed better than being left dangling on a temporal pendulum without any guarantee that this whole nonsense wasn't just in her head. With a parting glance at the viewscreen, Evie's thoughts bounced between those she couldn't account for, and that alone was enough to pick up her pace. If she was going crazy, then the only person at risk was herself. If this was actually happening, however...

"Let's go."


Previous Next