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An awayteam returns from a mission, badly injured and with memory loss. Little do they know one of the team members remembers everything, what is he hiding?
21st August 2003
First Officer's Log Supplemental: The Enterprise is heading towards a quiet planet in a small system so we can make repairs. The watcher Wesley has agreed to fill in all the gaps in our Astrometrix charts.
Lena, Tom, James, and Daniel were standing around Wesley, who was busy working at one of the stations. "This galaxy is known as the Jarsha Maha, well that's what the Softmicron call it. It is divided into quadrants just like our galaxy, the homeworld's quadrant has been fully conquered by them, and they have taken over 10% of the neighbouring quadrant," Wesley said.
"So can you work out where we are?" Lena asked, rubbing her forehead.
"Well we know we're two thousand light years from the Softmicron's homeworld, I thought that was what we wanted to know," James said.
"We need to know which direction to go in, and if there's a quicker way back home," Tom said.
"I'm imputing all the data now, however the galaxy hasn't been fully explored. We could be in a place that hasn't been explored yet," Wesley replied.
"I love those odds," James muttered.
"I haven't told you any odds yet," Wesley said.
"I don't need to hear them," James said.
Lena nodded, "yeah our luck isn't that great to start with."
"We don't need that much luck. If we are in an uncharted region of space that is close to charted, we could work out where we are using the position of the stars," Tom said.
"Done, the computer is locating our position," Wesley said.
"My money's on an unknown area," Lena said.
The station beeped, Wesley worked at the station again, "hmm, putting our position on the screen."
Everyone looked up at the screen, as they did Daniel lit up a tab. The smoke went in Wesley's face, he pulled a face as he waved it away.
"Ok, not sure what I'm looking at here," Lena said.
Tom frowned, "I do. We're in the Softmicron's neighbouring quadrant. In other words we're not far from their border."
"Yes the quadrant we're in is the smallest. This galaxy isn't popular for its size either," Wesley said.
"Sounds like someone we know," Tom said looking James' way.
Both James and Lena glared. "Are you saying I'm small too?" Lena snapped.
"You're a girl, it's ok. Guys shouldn't have an excuse," Tom said.
"What about your fully grown son, he's the same height as my wife," James said.
Tom looked away, "anyway, you were saying Wes?"
Lena tried to keep a straight face, "I think he was finished."
"I was," Wesley said.
Daniel turned James and Lena's way, "so what's the plan then?" He blew smoke in their direction.
"Please don't do that, I quit a long time ago," James said.
"Quit? Really," Daniel said, shaking his head.
Wesley folded his arms, "you should know that smoking seriously affects people's health. A Slayer should be healthy."
"Oops," James said sarcastically.
"Personally I don't get it, breathing in smoke. I don't get it," Lena said.
"Good, don't try it. I only started cos I had a bit of a suicidal nature back then," James said.
Daniel put his tab out on the console, "I did ask a question you know."
"Plan, we don't have one for now. Basically we head for the Softmicron world," Lena said.
"I have a better idea," Tom said. Everyone glanced in his direction. "We could jump in a game, stick around the Games Matrix, our watchers will tell us when a homebound Game comes and we hop on it."
"Who is this bloody twit?" Daniel asked.
"Tom, we've met before," Tom replied.
Lena rolled her eyes, "Tom we can't use the Games Matrix."
"Why not?" Tom asked.
"For one thing it's populated by Softmicron, and the ship doesn't really exist while we're inside," James replied.
"I thought those were sprites," Tom muttered.
Lena shook her head, "we thought that before we found out Softmicron are shape shifters."
"Also without a ship we wouldn't have much defense," Wesley commented.
"Not forgetting the time problem. Sandi and Kevin are from the 22nd century, they are only on Voyager now because of that place. We could come out of a Game in the 28th century," James said.
"Ooh the delightful Erona crew, no thanks," Tom muttered. He groaned, "ok, but the Game Cubes are our only bet. Judging by where we are now, it would take a few lifetimes to get back to Earth."
"Ok Tom's plan actually did help," James said.
"It did, how?" Lena said questioningly.
"Lena, how long were we in the Games Matrix back in 2377?" James asked.
Lena leaned on the station, "well it seemed we were there for hours, but we were there for two days."
"The thing that gets me is that time does mean something in the Games Matrix, it just goes slower than real time," James said.
"Yes, the Games Matrix is still a mystery to the council, and well we still don't know where it is. Where did you get the time has no meaning thing from?" Wesley said.
Lena put a hand on her hip, "Daniel told me several years ago."
Daniel shrugged, "don't look at me, I barely remember several months ago."
Tom put his hand up, "you said my plan helped, you didn't tell us how."
"Well we could jump into the next Game Cube, get into the next one despite where it goes, and well take our chances with the next one," James said.
"Better than Tom's, but still we could end up anywhere," Lena said.
Wesley shook his head, "your original plan is flaw-full. We are on the wrong side of the Softmicron border line to attempt another invasion of their homeworld. We'd have to go passed dozens of colonies, they'd sent Cubes after us every few minutes if they spot us."
"Ok it's agreed, we turn around after our planet stop. I want a plan devised before we leave guys," Lena said.
Daniel pushed Wesley out of the way, he started working at the station. "What are you doing?" Tom asked.
"Well my memory isn't exactly the way it was, but I think I may know where this time has no meaning crap came from," Daniel replied.
"Go on," Lena said.
"It occurs to me that the Game Cubes were controlled by a huge control room on their homeworld, well I was thinking maybe the Games themselves are in the computer," Daniel said.
"Are you suggesting that the Games Matrix is in the computer too?" James said questioningly.
"That doesn't make sense," Wesley said.
"Oh yeah, somebody tell me how long Sandi and Kevin were in the Matrix, in their point of view?" Daniel said.
Lena shook her head, she glanced at James, he just shrugged. "I dunno, several months I think," Lena replied.
"Voyager was in the Games Matrix for two days, yet it seemed to the crew like a few hours. The Games Matrix must have been slowed down just slightly at that time, less traffic you could call it. The system must have slowed down lots of times while Kevin and Sandi were there," Daniel said.
"Yeah there is a hell of a difference," Tom said.
"Fine, the Games Matrix is inside a computer, ok so what. How does that help us now?" Wesley muttered.
"I must have thought time doesn't have meaning in the Games Matrix, cos I knew it's the Game Cube traffic that's in charge, not time itself. The only time it's going really slow is when there are a lot of Game Cubes," Daniel said.
Lena sat down on the station, "he has a point Dan, we can't go back to the homeworld to control the Games, so how do we get the Games Matrix to keep up with our time while we're in there?"
"Oh come on, you're lucky I figured this much out. Figure the rest out yourselves," Daniel grumbled.
"Well we're saved, anymore useless theories?" Lena asked, looking bored.
"I have a one explaining some Season One lousiness," Tom replied.
"Great," James muttered sarcastically.
"Is it more helpful than Daniel's?" Lena asked.
"Yes, but you won't guess why until you let me finish," Tom replied.
"Ookay, we've got an hour to kill until we reach the planet. Go ahead," Lena said.
Wesley shrugged, "Season One? I know when I'm not wanted, come on Daniel." He left the room.
"Screw you old man," Daniel muttered.
"Right I'll keep it simple. Lena, do you remember how James was when you first met him?" Tom asked.
James looked confused, "how is that useful?"
Tom pointed a finger at him, "what did I just say."
"Fine," James groaned.
"Well ok, he was like a kid, ok bigger kid. Not as aggressive and a bit cheeky... er," Lena replied.
Tom nodded, "and Jessie?"
"Are we going through the entire original FV cast?" James asked, folding his arms.
"Don't make me point my finger again," Tom muttered.
Lena glanced up at the ceiling, "very similar to James in nearly every way, come to think of it."
"Ha ha, girly man," Daniel sniggered.
"Hey, I've got a few years of 'not as aggressive' to make up for," James muttered.
"To be honest James, Jessie had more of a temper than usual. Yours is more volatile now," Lena said.
Tom nodded, "ok. For three years James was like he is now, but then he turned into what you described. Jessie seemed to follow suit, like she was copying off him, but her temper remained intact. Interesting."
"Get to that damn point quicker," James grumbled.
"He seemed to change overnight, of course no one in this room can confirm it so you have my word on it. If my calculations are correct it was around the time Jessie came back from hiding, which I found out a while ago was because she had a pregnancy that didn't end well. There were rumours going around that the two had been fighting, how very strange," Tom said.
"I'm getting impatient," Lena muttered.
"Ok fine, we know Jessie is a witch, don't we. Me thinks that she cast a spell to fix the friendship by well, getting rid of that nasty temper of his, and well some of his ego and... How can I say it, the shred of maturity he had. Then to make it seem natural, she decided to act like him until it wore off. She and James started to go back to normal months before that love spell incident. I rest my case," Tom said. He sat down at the console.
Lena smiled like she was faking it, though her hand went through the console. "Tom, how does that help us now, you bloody fool!"
"If Jessie could mess with a guy's mind like that, and a Slayer of all people, back then, she could do wonders with that Matrix now," Tom said.
Lena glanced at James, "do you think she could?" She waved a hand in front of James' face, he finally looked at her. "Do you think she could?"
"I wouldn't recommend it, most of her power now can only be controlled by her dark side," James replied.
"Too bad we don't have Lilly," Lena said.
"Or Juna," Tom said.
"We do have her," Lena said.
Tom laughed nervously, "oh yeah."
Lena rolled her eyes, "at least this wasn't all for nothing. We can do James' part of the plan, at least to get us to a different place for now. Of course we repair at that planet first. Unless the first Game Cube we try takes us much closer, or back home, we can think of another plan."
"Hold on, Jessie would be able to control her dark side if she endured Slayer training. Just an idea," Daniel said.
"James could do with the same kind, you know with all his evilness," Tom said.
"Hey I can control it, the last time I went evil I did it on purpose," James said.
Lena shrugged, "you still can turn evil though. Give it a go, it's something you and Jess could do as a couple."
"Great thing I suggested it, so glad Wesley's James' watcher so I don't have to train either of you. So long," Daniel said. He left the room while lighting up another tab.
"I've got to go, need to do things," James said. He left the room too.
Tom glanced in Lena's direction, "did we say something wrong to him?"
Lena rolled her eyes, she sighed into her hand.
Admiral Paris was busy working at his desk, his door chimed. "Come in."
Kathryn walked into the room with two Security members behind her. "Admiral, what's going on? I have tried to contact members of my crew with no luck, and when I'm called here I have Security escort."
Paris stood up, "I'm sorry Kathryn. We've had to put some of your crew into custody, including you."
"I don't understand, why?" Kathryn asked.
"Your little method of getting home didn't please anyone. You violated the temporal prime directive, not to mention the normal prime directive," Paris replied.
"No, just arrest me. I am their Captain, I told them to do everything that they did during that," Kathryn said.
"I only arrested the ones that were involved in the events themselves, one of which is a Liger citizen. If I understand correctly, she was the one who came back in time with several others," Paris said.
"You don't understand. Both Voyager and the Enterprise had been destroyed in that future," Kathryn said.
Picard strolled through the doors, "you only took this girl's, and her friends, word for it. There was no proof."
Kathryn sighed, "one of them transmitted memories into his past self. You can't fake memories."
"Which crewmember is that?" Paris asked.
"He's not here, he's on the Enterprise," Kathryn replied. Paris stared at her like he was waiting for her to finish. "Marquis crewmember James Stuart."
Paris looked at a PADD, "he isn't in any of the original files."
"Ok, try under James Taylor," Kathryn said.
Paris nodded, "ah yes, wanted by the Cardassian Government for murder and bodily harm. It's a shame he isn't here."
Kathryn stepped closer to the table, "he wasn't arrested because Federation officers in that area let him go. I checked that file myself, they cleared him because they thought he was possessed."
"Yes, the black eyes thing, they did think that yes. The Cardassian Government was not impressed, they found out not long after this young man disappeared into the Marquis ranks," Paris said.
"That was a long time ago though. He had been in trouble with the police lots of times, all times his case was cleared by an Admiral. You didn't know that, did you?" Picard said.
Kathryn looked confused, "I don't understand."
"You know already Kathryn. Only Admirals at the time knew about his condition, so he was cleared of every case that seemed relative to it. Since you've been gone the Game Cube and Slayer thing has become more public. The Cardassians think the case was unfairly cleared, they've had a price on his head for years now," Paris said.
"Can't you tell them who he is?" Kathryn asked, sounding panicky.
Paris smiled, "we did, but they still want him. The Cardassian homeworld hasn't been hit by Games Cubes since the 19th century. They don't believe us."
Picard eyed her suspiciously, "you sounded very concerned for the Slayer's welfare, why's that?"
Kathryn looked nervous, "because he's really important, everyone needs a Slayer or two."
"It did seem more personal than that, Kathryn," Paris said.
"He is my crewmember," Kathryn said.
"Well whatever personal feelings you have for him has to be cast aside. When he gets back to this quadrant he'll probably be tested for those alternate future memories, that's if you lot lose your case. After that we'd have to give him up to the Cardassian Government," Paris said.
Kathryn laughed nervously, "no you don't. He is needed, and well the Cardassians will never know he's back."
"I'm sorry Kathryn. That's all, Security," Paris said.
The two Security people stood closer to Kathryn. "Please come with us," one said.
"Oh and Captain, we need to know something. Who is in charge of the Enterprise at the moment?" Picard asked.
"Um, I thought we were finished," Kathryn replied nervously. Picard and Paris glanced at each other.
Triah turned away from opps, "Captain we are in orbit of that planet. Um, ok. Lieutenant, we're in orbit of that planet."
Tom glanced over at Lena, she was fast asleep on her chair. "It's ok I heard."
"I'll tell Engineering to begin proper repairs," Triah said. She stood up.
"This is getting to be ridiculous," Jessie commented.
Tom nodded, he tried to shake Lena lightly, "Lena, wake up." Lena punched him, he fell to the ground.
"That didn't work, but it was quite fun," Jessie said.
Tom pulled himself, he put his hand under his bleeding nose. "I'm surprised this nose still fixes ok after all those Slayers punching me."
"And me, don't forget me," Jessie said.
Tom nodded, "uh huh."
James stepped out of the turbolift, he went over to Jessie. "Jess, your break started ten minutes ago. We have to pick the kids up in a few minutes."
"Yeah I had to add thirty minutes to her duty shift, she was late," Tom said.
Jessie pulled a face, "I forgot my watch."
"It's weird, you say that everytime but when you're on time you don't have a watch then either," Tom said, folding his arms.
"Now you notice," Jessie said.
Lena suddenly woke up, "don't touch my stuff... oh, just a dream."
Everyone looked in her direction. "Lena, how long have you been in that chair?" James asked.
"Uh five minutes," Lena blurted out.
"I've been here five minutes, so that's wrong," James said.
"Nah, I don't think so," Lena said. She looked at the panel on her chair, "oh crap, it's 1635."
"So what time did you think it was?" Tom asked.
Lena looked down at the ground, "um never mind."
"Lena, we've been through this. You shouldn't be on the bridge all the time," James said.
Lena stood up, "I wasn't. I came here after the meeting, it's only been an hour."
"Can we talk in your office?" James asked.
"Damn it," Lena muttered. She and James went into the Ready Room.
"I don't see what the big deal is, mum used to do it," Lena said as she sat in her chair.
"Ok firstly, she drank coffee by the truck load. Secondly she's nearly 50. Thirdly, she only did it a few times, you're doing this every day. There's no point, you sleep the whole time you're on the bridge," James said.
"But if something happens I'm already there. Plus what's age got to do with it, I'm not a child," Lena said.
"No offense Lena, but mum was probably the youngest Captain in Starfleet. You're about twenty odd years younger than her," James said.
"Twenty nine years younger actually," Lena muttered.
"That's fast maths," James said.
Lena smiled, "see, I can be asleep all day and still be able to do maths."
"Lena, maths and being a Captain are different things. I just don't get why you're spending most of your time on the bridge, you didn't used to," James said.
"We're on our own now, don't you realise that? Someone's got to be alert in this area we've never been in," Lena said.
"The only thing you were alert about was people stealing your stuff, in your dreams of course," James muttered.
"Ok fine, you're the smart one. Why don't you think up something better than my plan," Lena said.
"Ok. I know he isn't the best around, but why not have Tom in charge for one of the shifts. For example you could do the morning and afternoon shift. He could do the evening shift. You could then pick somebody to do the night shifts," James said.
Lena groaned, "you know I really hate you."
"I think that's the whole point," James said.
"I could do that, it's just who could do the night shift?" Lena said questioningly.
"Well if you're going for rank, you could use Craig," James said.
"He's my boyfriend, I wouldn't see him as much... that's why you suggested him isn't it?" Lena said.
"Damn you got me. Just find somebody and soon, you need sleep," James said.
Lena pulled a face, "aye sir. Wait, oh you could do the night shift."
"No way, being Security Chief means I do more work than I used to. I'm not adding a night shift to it. Besides, I have kids," James said.
"Wouldn't trust you in command anyway," Lena said.
"But you trust me, more than Craig that is, to handle security on the ship. Unless you've decided otherwise," James said.
"Oh shut up, you're really bugging me," Lena moaned.
"Then my work here is done," James said. He turned around and left the room.
Enterprise, the Mess
Tom carried a tray over to a table nearby. Bryan and Johnathan were sitting at it. "So kids, how was school?" he asked.
Johnathan pouted, "horrible, when is mummy coming?"
Bryan groaned, "I told you, she's on Voyager. Voyager's back home, we're not."
"Bryan for crying out loud, don't upset him," Tom snapped.
Bryan shrugged, "hey it was hard on me too."
Tom sighed, "I know, but there's nothing we can do about it now. I've suggested two crazy, but workable, solutions so we can get home soon, but Lena didn't seen impressed."
James, Jessie, Duncan and Sasha were meanwhile at a table near the window. Sasha and Duncan had icecream, so Sasha had icecream all over her face.
Jessie watched James just fiddle with his food using his fork. "Um, are you ok?" she asked. She snatched the fork off of him. "Hello, is anyone home?"
"Yeah a hundred people got home a few days ago," James replied.
Jessie rolled her eyes, she dropped the fork nearby him. "What's up with you?"
"Nothing," James replied, briefly glancing at the kids.
Duncan looked up from his own icecream, "dad can I throw icecream at Tom?"
"Ok, as long as it's vanilla," James replied.
Duncan smiled evily, he flicked a spoon full of yellow icecream in Tom's direction. "Ow, that hit my eye. It's really cold!"
"Let me guess, it was Tom that got you in this mood," Jessie said.
James shrugged, "maybe."
"What do you know, I have three kids," Jessie muttered.
James looked up at her looking worried, "what!?"
"You're the third one, silly," Jessie said. She opened a bottle of pop for Sasha. "But it's good to know you're still there somewhere."
Sasha flicked her own spoon at Duncan, some strawberry icecream went in his face. "Mum, tell her," he moaned.
"Sasha honey, only throw yellow kind at Tom," Jessie said softly.
"Ok mummy," Sasha said in a sweet little voice. She flicked her spoon in Tom's direction.
"What the hell? Who keeps doing that!?" Tom screamed.
Duncan wiped off the pink icecream, "why does she have to copy off everything I do?"
"I guess it's because you're her big brother and she loves you. I think it's cute," Jessie replied.
"Oh yeah, you don't see Lena copying off dad," Duncan muttered.
Craig came into the room holding a PADD. He found Lena sitting in her chair, with her feet on her desk. "Hi Craig," she said.
"Erm hi, there's something different about you," Craig said as he walked closer to the desk.
Lena put her feet down, "oh I put in black contact lenses, I just wanted to see why Yasmin thought Evil Slayers are so cool."
"I could get engaged to you, and then get someone to murder me, you can test it for real then," Craig commented as he sat down.
"No thanks," Lena said. She put her hand over her eyes, she moved her hand away and dumped two black lenses on the table. "What's up then?"
"Two things actually Lena. One, who should be Security Chief now that both James and I are stuck on the Enterprise only. Two..." Craig replied.
"That reminds me, why aren't you on Voyager?" Lena asked.
Craig looked nervous, "my future self creeped me out. Anyway, the second thing was that several people have left some complaints about our current situation."
"I'm sorry but they'll just have to deal," Lena said.
"They're about you being in command Lena. They thought it was ok when you were in command while your mother was around, but now they think someone else should be in charge," Craig said. He placed the PADD on the table.
"Well it's either me or someone who's got the highest rank, which is Tom," Lena said, shaking her head. "Damn, don't let this leak to Tom. He'll be planning a mutiny in no time."
In: "Bridge to Lena. The natives have invited us to their market place. Should I send a team down?"
"I'll tell you what. You and James lead a team down, you two may as well be Security Chiefs on different shifts afterwards," Lena replied.
Craig nodded, "ok so he can't boss me around?"
"Yeah, and you can't boss him around," Lena replied.
Craig laughed, "like I could, you know what he's like." He left the room, Tom came in straight afterwards.
"Just a thought, you've been on duty all day. Shouldn't you have a break?" he said questioningly.
"I am having a break," Lena said.
"No I mean a break where you sleep," Tom said.
"God, first James now you. I'm fine, I'll be right out," Lena said.
Tom nodded, he stepped outside.
"I can't believe I'm on an awaymission, not during my duty shift. It's sick, I tell ya. I have my herbal bath at this time," Naomi moaned.
Craig stepped closer to Faye, "don't you wish you hadn't of heard that?" Faye nodded her head.
James came into the room, "hi people."
"Hi," everyone but Naomi said.
Naomi headed over to James, "just the guy I wanna see. Why the hell am I on an awaymission in my own time?"
"Because you didn't come to work today, or yesterday, and the day before that. Actually come to think of it, you haven't worked all week," James replied.
Naomi smiled nervously, "this is where my good flirting skills pay off."
"Before you even start, that won't work," James said quickly.
Naomi groaned, folded her arms, "damn."
"Ok, let's go quickly," James said.
"No argument here," Faye said.
The group got onto the transporter pad. The transporter guy keyed in the usual commands, the group dematerialised.
The door chimed. "Yes?" Paris called.
Picard and a very familiar looking guy came into the room. Paris noticed, he stood to attention. "At ease slaves, how did it go?" Damien sneered.
"Really well, Janeway bought it," Paris replied.
"Good, this'll be fun," Damien said.
"I still don't get why we have to do this, sir," Paris said.
"For one thing to have some fun, secondly to get them back for being cruel to me, thirdly it'll stop them trying to rescue the Enterprise, cos I want to have some fun with them too," Damien said.
"Oh I thought it was to lock them up to get rid of them," Paris said.
"Oh please, that's too unconvincing. We have to give them a court case first," Damien muttered.
Paris looked confused, "um sir."
"Shut up, I knew what you meant, I was just testing you," Damien grumbled.
Everyone were in their usual spots, working or doing nothing quietly.
Triah turned away from her console, "we're being hailed."
Lena woke up suddenly, "yeah yeah I heard that. Put them on screen."
"Audio only," Triah muttered.
"Oh, ok let's hear it," Lena said.
In: "Enterprise, your crewmembers have been found injured in a quiet street. We don't know what happened."
"Crap, transport them up Triah," Lena ordered.
Triah nodded, "yes ma'am."
Tom smiled nervously, "um thanks by the way."
In: "We will investigate this Enterprise. Arthlum out."
"Who said there was no friendly species left in the universe?" Tom commented.
Lena pulled herself off her chair, "I'll be in Sickbay. Keep me informed." Tom nodded.
****TO BE CONTINUED****
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