Notes: A lot of "Part Two" had to be altered/removed as the rest of the episode had no need for excessive first person narrative (or at least my crappy version of it) and these scenes did. In fact Part Two abandoned it once they got settled into the Delta Quadrant.
Also I wasn't happy with having the particular scene here as a flashback, which as you noticed has a flashback of its own. A flashback within a flashback. Italics can't make that go away!
There is stuff here that made it into the episode, and they've been kept in so you can see what was wrong with it. Anyway this was based immediately after the club scene. The scenes altered from Crying, Dying took the opening paragraph's place.
She'd forever remember thinking that and cringing at the memory of what happened next, even if it was blurry. It wasn't like her even with a few drinks. Even the reason why she was on that holiday, in that bar slipped her mind. It was almost as if it was stolen from her.
It doesn't matter I suppose, it worked out in the end...
Kathryn thought she misheard. Her eyes widened and the blood drained from her face. The oddest part was the feeling that this had happened before.
"We're on the other side of the galaxy," Harry couldn't believe it either.
She felt like such a liar, not that she planned this or had any idea that this would happen. That's what she thought though. When she stared at the array on the viewscreen in front of her, she felt a twinge of familiarity. How could this be?
"It's only going to be a few weeks. Are you sure you're going to be okay?" She still remembered the smile and laugh he made when she said that, like it had just happened.
"Mum, I'm not one. Try adding another twenty years to that."
Kathryn couldn't help but laugh as well. In her defence he didn't look it. She pretended to scowl at the young man in front of her like he was still a little boy. "I'll be still looking out for you when you're thirty one, don't think you've escaped me just yet."
"I dunno," he smirked. "You've got your own ship now. You won't want to come back."
He didn't mean it to, but that comment gave her a twinge in her heart. She remembered how much her father was away, when she lost him, the resulting pain that gave her. She was determined not to let her career do the same thing to her son. At one point she had been again tempted to give it all up for him, but he'd given her the look he always did when he disagreed with her.
"And then what? You'd hang around the house cooking and cleaning? You'd hate that. I'd hate that." He smiled and looked out of the window. "I don't want you to someday resent me for it either."
Kathryn had stared up at her son with quiet dismay. She had battled with the same decision when he was baby and she had "stolen" him away from his monster of a father. There was no way she'd ever regret that part of the decision, but she had felt terrible for deciding to go to the Academy anyway. He never seemed to be angry at her for it, he was always happy to see her again when she came home. "It was better than the alternative," she thought.
Her mother told her about the sacrifices mothers and fathers make for their children, a not so subtle hint to at least delay the Academy until her baby was old enough for school. She had however thought it would be better for him to set an example, to give him someone to look up to. Then there was a brief fear that she'd subconsciously resent him for "ruining" her life, and he'd feel it in everything she did. It was entirely possible for her to have a career and a son, it was just going to be a little harder, that was all. She wouldn't be a good mother if she had taken the easy way out.
"I chose to have you," she struggled to say through a hoarse throat. "... and I chose to defy your father by bringing you home with me. I'd never blame you, understand? I just don't want you coming home to find a faceless Starfleet officer on your doorstep, waiting to tell you the bad news."
"That's a risk sure, but I'd rather be proud of you for doing something you love, than come home everyday to see you miserable... cos of me," he had said. There was no winning with this boy. He had even said that to her face, not whilst staring at the window. He was deadly serious, and right.
"I'll be back, I promise. After the mission, I'll give you the grand tour," Kathryn told him.
The smirk managed to grow, he laughed. "Is that the one where everyone's formal, there's handshaking and other rubbish. No thanks, just a normal tour and a go at the helm will do me fine."
Kathryn pretended to look mad again, but he seemed to see right through it. She reached up to stroke his cheek. When he squirmed and pulled a disgusted face mockingly she pinched it instead. They both laughed it off in the end but she couldn't help feeling like he was more worried than he let on. It wasn't her first deep space mission and it wouldn't be her last.
The memory faded into the black she was staring at through her Ready Room window.
Cut Scene 2
Notes: Now at this point I hope the episode has been fully read before you come here, cos I'm now venturing into "Part Four" territory. The plot for the ending of Four basically was to show Lena's childhood, primarily the parts of it with James and Jessie's ill fated son Michael "Robbie", Craig and James. However there wasn't really anyway to do that without writing paragraphs of other stuff to build up what was happening in between, like with the previous things. This is more character focused though and I didn't want to have to do that.
These scenes I decided to reference Season Five's storyarc, but all it was doing was filling up the episode with stuff I didn't want in here. What's in Five now is hopefully a little more vivid and not as long. Hopefully it's more interesting as well as it goes back to focus on Lena, which this version lacked.
Captain's Log Supplemental: Astrometrics has picked up a strange anomaly that seems to have taken the place of an entire sector filled with planets. We've altered course to investigate and hopefully help. According to Seven of Nine, the sector should be inhabited by three billion on two different M-Class worlds.
Kathryn stepped out of the Ready Room. "Report."
"We've just arrived. The anomaly seems to stretch across seven light years. Sensors can't make heads or tails of it," Harry replied.
"On screen," Chakotay ordered.
The viewscreen shifted. All anyone could see on it now was a dark blue. "Magnify," Kathryn ordered. Nothing happened. "Magnify!"
"I did," Harry was confused.
"What the hell is it?" Chakotay whispered.
Harry's confusion filtered away as excitement kicked in. "It has the properties of a wormhole."
"That's one big assed wormhole," Jessie commented.
Kathryn nodded, "lets be cautious here. If it is a wormhole, I want to know where it goes. Better yet, I want to know why it has enveloped two habited systems."
Harry felt a little guilty for getting himself excited. "Right yeah, I'm sorry Captain."
James stood in front of the window, staring intently at the strange blue anomaly in front of them. Behind him there were two tables full of kids, two of them with Klingon ridges on their forehead. They weren't alone, three adults were keeping careful watch on them.
A little four year old blonde girl walked up to James and tugged on his trouser leg. "Daddy?"
"What is it Amy?" he asked without looking away.
"I don't feel well," she said with a pout.
James glanced down at her with concern on his face. "You too?" he said quietly. He knelt down to pick her up, then stood back up. The girl stared out the window, she started to shiver. "Duncan, Michael... I'll be back later, okay?"
Duncan and Michael both looked over from their table. Lena was sitting beside Michael, she didn't look much better than Amy did.
"What's going on?" James asked when he noticed that. He also noticed Duncan shudder briefly as well. The blue anomaly was back in his thoughts, his head slowly turned to look over his shoulder at it. Something was definitely wrong with it, supernaturally wrong.
"We'll have to go around it. That's going to add a few months to our journey," Tom said with a lump in his throat.
Kathryn didn't look too happy to hear that. Her head turned to stare at the blue that had taken over the Conference Room window.
"We've tried everything, Captain. Even if we spend another two weeks, months, we'll probably never crack it," Chakotay said. "If we stay here any longer..."
Kathryn closed her eyes, she knew he was right. "I know. The crew's safety comes first."
Tuvok nodded, "we have made no progress, yet we have endured many attacks. Logically..."
"Are you people used to me disagreeing with you? I said I agreed," Kathryn said, slightly bemused despite everything. "James can't keep fighting off these things while we waste time scanning for any weakness. We can't take the chance that another attack happens on the opposite side of the ship he is, we've lost too many people as it is."
"I'll plot the most efficient course around the anomaly, Captain," Seven said.
"Good, glad the Doctor managed to get you on meds that actually work," Kathryn said with a smile.
Seven raised her mechanical eyebrow while the Doctor looked offended. "No meds, just a genius with some psychology training."
"Mmm hmm, why don't we believe you?" Tom smirked.
The Doctor gave him a deserved dirty look. "Why would sending her to counselling not do anything or make her worse? That never happens."
The lights dimmed down and were replaced by the red ones. The siren started blaring afterwards.
Kathryn only groaned like it was a minor inconvience, "another attack? Get on that altered course Seven, make sure it's a safe distance away from the anomaly so these things can stop."
"Yes Captain," Seven nodded.
Everyone hurried onto the Bridge, Tuvok, Tom and Harry took their stations back from the crewmembers already there.
"Intruder alert, Commander. Deck Two," the Tactical officer reported. "I've already report..."
"The Mess Hall, the children are there," Kathryn interrupted with a look of horror on her face.
Chakotay didn't hesitate, he ran for the nearby turbolift.
The turbolift opened just outside the Mess Hall doors. They were open and some kids were already running out, screaming.
Chakotay rushed inside and was immediately dazzled by a bright portal in the centre of the room. He averted his eyes away from it to look for any more of the children. There were a few left, including his daughter, hiding behind the counter of Neelix's kitchen. He was surprised to see that there were no intruders, just the portal, which James was in the middle of scanning with a tricorder.
"What, where..." he started to ask.
"Dead already," James shrugged.
Chakotay glanced back at the galley, he just caught Lena peeping her head over the top. "I hope she didn't see anything."
"No," James answered with a frown. To Chakotay he didn't seem particular bothered about the whole situation, which he found very odd for him.
"What is it?"
James sighed. "They came out of there. Lucky I was here, they went straight for Lena."
"Right well..." Chakotay muttered, ignoring the anger brewing inside him for now. He glanced back again at the galley, just spotting a couple of kids escape from it and run for the door. He figured only Lena was still left. When he glanced back at the portal and squinted his eyes, she ran around the galley to stand behind them. "I'm her father, I should protect her now."
"Don't remind me," James groaned. "This is my job you know."
"Your job is arguing with dad, I knew it," Lena commented cutely.
James and Chakotay looked behind them and down to see her staring up at them. "You do know it's not just her, where's your two?" Chakotay whispered.
"Eew, looks like snots," Duncan's voice complained from inside the kitchen. They then heard Amy giggle in response. "Think it is?"
"Yup, I seen Neelix pick his nose and stir food with it," she said.
Chakotay shuddered. "Why am I not surprised? Look, I'll take them. Anywhere's safer than here."
"What if more of them appear elsewhere, like last time?" James said.
"Anything could come out of that thing, I should protect them while you fight or something. You know I'm right," Chakotay muttered.
Just then a dozen different kinds of demons stepped out of the anomaly, one by one. Lena and Chakotay looked pretty freaked out when they saw them. James tried to maneuver Lena to directly behind him so they wouldn't see her.
"Eew, Bogeymen. Daddy get them!" Lena cried out.
"Aaaw how cute, let's make the boss proud," the lead demon snarled.
"Yeah, you're right," James said quietly to Chakotay. He had already backed off, snatching Lena's hand as he did. Just as the demons lurched forward to attack, Chakotay bundled his daughter into his arms and hurried backwards.
Her eyes went wide with wonder as her much older brother get in the monsters way and started to fight them off.
"Cool," she giggled. "Can I do that too, daddy?"
Chakotay cringed, "no, hell no!" He ran into the galley, then into the kitchen to find Duncan and Amy only just beaming a pot of disgusting slop away. They looked up at him with wide eyes until they realised it was only him. "What are you...?"
"Saving the ship," Duncan whispered. "Oh is dad fighting? Wanna see." Chakotay tried to keep Lena up with one arm, then used the spare one to block his path.
"Come on," Chakotay said in a hush tone. He guided the boy to the door at the back of the kitchen. Amy followed them.
Outside Security Team One were waiting nervously, each one armed with phaser rifles.
"Keep up the good work," Chakotay said bitterly until he realised they were with the children that had escaped. "Oh, really."
Lena was pouting, "I wanna help James." Chakotay shook his head at her, which made her pout bigger. She wasn't his only problem, Duncan was about to wander off too. He handed his daughter over to Craig, then ran after him to pull him back. She was no longer a baby, so he ended up having to drop his phaser rifle to get a decent hold of her. It didn't help that she struggled too.
"But... dad killing things, so much fun," Duncan complained.
Chakotay rolled his eyes as he got a hold of the boy's hand. "I told him he should keep his job a secret like we do with Lena," he said Craig's way.
Little Lena in his arms folded her arms in a huff. Craig sighed in relief as that meant she had stopped struggling.
"How? The guy's a demon magnet," Thompson asked.
Tom tapped away at the helm, he pressed one last command. "Course entered, warp nine."
"How far does it keep us away from it while we go around?" Kathryn asked.
Seven stood at the computer on the railing behind her. "My estimates from previous encounters, we'd have to be at least one million kilometres away at all times. However that has significantly increased our journey time."
"Doesn't matter. There's no point in saving a few months if there's a chance we could die in the process," Kathryn said. Everyone stared at her in shock, they vocalised it too with a gasp. "What?"
"Oh god, maybe she's possessed," Harry stuttered.
Tom nodded nervously. "She's got to be."
Kathryn rolled her eyes. "Fine, don't tell me. I'll be in my Ready Room." She stormed off towards her office, muttering to herself. "At least the coffee doesn't judge me."
Tuvok overheard that as she was just passing him at the time. "No, she definitely is not."