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Star Trek: Phoenix - Disconnected (S1 E6).

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Star Trek: Phoenix - Disconnected (S1 E6). Print E-mail
Written by Andy Davenport   
The Rogers family appeared to their neighbours and anyone who knew them as any other normal family. At exactly 8 every weekday morning, like clockwork Bill Rogers would start up his classic Buick hovercar, and reverse out his driveway whilst heading in the general direction of his workplace. Always arriving in plenty of time to report for duty, he would commence his shift piloting the civilian air tram along the regular route he was assigned to. His Monday to Friday shift would end with him dropping off his last passengers for shift end at 14.00. Half an hour later, the ocean blue Buick would pull into the driveway at home. You could set your clock by him, and the nosiest of neighbours in the street usually did.

Martha Rogers; house-proud wife and lynchpin of the family would head out of the house at 8.30 every weekday morning, making her work on foot. The nearness of the infant nursery would deem it incredibly lazy to take a car, bus or taxi. At exactly 13.00, her four hour shift would be concluded, and she would make her way home.

 

 


Bill and Martha were the proud parents of their only daughter; Amanda. She was a credit to them both and excelled in her schooling beyond her parents wildest expectations. But then her parents had always been concerned if the day would come when school wouldn’t be challenging enough. On many occasions, Amanda had questioned her parents if there were any members of the family or ancestors who had their IQ at genius level, or were exceptionally gifted scholars. Upon the first time she had asked the question, naturally, her parents had been curious as what had prompted the line of questioning. Amanda had found that she was different to all the other students, in the academic sense. Bill and Martha explained to her that everyone, even adults, learned at different paces. Some people learn incredibly fast, and adapt with ease whilst eating new challenges for breakfast. Others require a bit more coaching, guidance, and extra tutorials.

She couldn’t help but feel that when it came to questions of that nature, her parents were expertly avoiding the real answer. That though was another change she had started to notice and that was that she really knew if people were telling the truth or hiding something from her. She also noticed more when people were mocking her behind her back, avoiding answering questions, and all other manner of unpalatable behaviours. But that was just the tip of the iceberg for strange and unpredictable occurrences in her life. It was almost as if the solid, dependable adults that were her parents, that she had looked up to all her life, had become incredibly erratic and accident prone. Slips in the kitchen, tumbles down the stairs, the nicking of a finger whilst preparing food, were just some of the examples of the many trauma’s her parents had recently experienced.

One evening she couldn’t sleep, and in her over tired state she caught snippets from what seemed like a very fraught and anxious conversation. The jumbled bits she seemed to hear was something about the snapping of fingers and something closing in. Again her mother and father would avoid her question like it was a game of hide and seek. She learnt that it was best not to ask any questions, as she would never receive the answers she sought. Little did she know that one day the answers, when she least expected them, would be forthcoming.

As soon as the summer holidays came that year, her parents packed her off in a wild and panicked move to her ‘Aunt Susan.’ She wasn’t really her Aunt as such, but was a very close workmate of Martha’s, and in general, close friend of the family’s. It had been several weeks into the holidays, whilst staying at the residence in the country, that her family home suddenly existed no more. The weather across the planet had been tamed courtesy of the scientific advancement that was known as the Federation weather grid. However, a freak tornado had suddenly appeared without any prior indication, and solely destroyed the Rogers family home, leaving no traces. As quickly as the tornado had appeared, it disappeared. There had been no signs that a tornado would happen, and it had escaped complete detection by the grid. Scientists had found it completely baffling, and a complete investigation, including full diagnostic and overhaul of all systems and components.

Amanda was now an orphan, and in the slow course of her grieving, she had discovered the powerful emotion of anger. She had never known such a destructive force in her relatively short experience of life so far, and something told her that left unchecked, the barely controlled fury threatened to leave a trail of destruction in its wake. Of this she was certain and had never been more certain of anything in her life. Many years passed by as Amanda blossomed into a beautiful, intelligent, and charming young woman. She had become everything her own parents had wished for, and more. At a pre-planned moment in her life, an enigmatic, charismatic, yet arrogant and conceited stranger came into her life, during her posting aboard the U.S.S Enterprise 1701-D. He claimed to be from an omnipotent race called the Q, which also happened to be his name. Q explained to Amanda that her wonder of why she felt she was so different due to her varying gifts such as academic excellence, were thanks to good breeding. He explained that her parents were former Q, but had enough of living forever and a day, and decided to live out their lives as humans.

After demonstrating her possible potential, he offered her the opportunity to explore her abilities and life as a Q. After much debating, she left with Q for parts unknown, and commenced a voyage of discovery full of wonder and awe. Although he never would mention it to her, Amanda had the potential to become the most powerful Q ever. He was tasked with guiding her in the right way and ensuring that her, and her powers weren’t used for the wrong cause.

The leader of the Continuum had expressly stated that if Q messed up, he would be banished from the Continuum for good, with no chance for reprieve or parole. Although he was informed that should he be banished, he would be allowed to make a choice out of three options on how to live out his days. Q couldn’t have been more wrong about his predictions. Amanda wasn’t only becoming the most powerful Q ever, but the most single, powerful entity in the known universe. Q could definitely see that her continued growth and accelerated development would ultimately lead to a millennia old prophecy coming true that one day, a different kind of Q, of the Q, yet not of the Q, would find their place in the known universe, and evolve into a supreme omnipotent entity. The All. All seeing, all being, all knowing, all controlling, all becoming. Attaining the all. Amanda could, in time, prove to be very beneficial to the Continuum, or prove disastrous to them, and the universe.

Q had the constant nagging thought in his mind that ultimately, Amanda would find out the truth on what happened to her family. Once the truth was uncovered, the question would be, how would she react? With such power, her anger could know no bounds, and for Q to be banished from the Continuum would be the least of his worries. He had already witnessed a demonstration of her emerging power, in a bid to restore the home planet of her favourite race; the El Aurians. Her power at this time was at a developmental stage in a Q’s terms, akin to a human foetus. They had arrived at El Auria, amidst a world ravaged by the metallic shine of assimilation.

Orbiting the once beautiful planet was a vast array of Borg cubes, spheres, diamonds, and scout ships; not accounting for the various assimilated vessels from many a space faring civilisation. The resident Borg Queen had instantly noticed the arrival of the two Q’s, and subsequently ordered all vessels to converge and assimilate. Amanda had felt the surge of power like electricity through her every fibres she stretched out her arms in the Borg’s direction, whilst equally stretching out her hands with her fingers apart. Wave after wave of flames engulfed the oncoming vessels and instantly evaporated them. El Auria’s surface had been scorched free of every remaining shred of assimilation and occupation. Then, with a snap of her fingers, the planet was restored to its former state of a flourishing paradise, with the resident species of El Aurians back in residence. But Q had reminded her that although her powers could bring to fruition every desire, fulfil every fantasy, satisfy any whim, and satiate any thirst for justice, there would be consequences to consider. It wouldn’t always be the case, but for every action, there would be an equal reaction.

The restoration of the homeworld of the race of listeners had severe consequence throughout the timeline. The U.S.S. Enterprise NCC 1701-B encountered the Nexus, but instead of attempting to rescue the entangled ships carrying El Aurian refugees, as in the natural timeline, in the newly created timeline it was attempting rescue of a flotilla of ships carrying refugees from another species. Events played out almost identical to the original timeline, except that as the Starfleet vessel attempted to break free of the anomaly, a ribbon lashed out in a sweeping arc and instantly destroyed the vessel. There were other subtle changes throughout the timeline such as Guinan, not providing Captain Jean Luc Picard of the U.S.S. Enterprise 1701-D, with her usual wisdom at times of crisis. First contacts went awry for him, as well as unresolved diplomatic incidents, and a record number of away of missions resulting in deaths. Picard was Q’s favourite human toy, and after informing Amanda of what changes her changes had caused, she immediately put back everything as she found it. She had learnt a valuable lesson that day would sit forever in her mind. She did fleetingly question to herself though that what if all the changes to the timeline had been implemented by Q himself, due to his feelings on tampering with anything related to the Borg, after his admonishment by the Continuum of advancing contact between the Federation and the cybernetic zombies. If that was the case, a simple request of putting everything back to normal would have sufficed. Then as quickly as the thought had entered her mind, it dissipated. Q’s worst fears were then confirmed as Amanda learned the truth whilst assisting a migrating flock of cytoplasmic, empathic life forms navigate their way to their regular breeding grounds through a densely populated starfield of subspace eddy’s. With each statement of her revelations she prodded Q in the chest, emphasising her words.

The Rogers family decision to live out their days in human form, and then siring a family outside the Continuum gave the Council Of Elders cause for concern. Omnipotent beings living in humanoid form amongst humans, could leave them open to all kinds of scenario’s and situations, should their true nature be revealed, or should temptation to use their powers become too much to bear. The leader couldn’t risk any potential disaster arising, and was already uncomfortable with their decision to live amongst humans. The Council decided to create the fake tornado to wipe out the family and their home, yet in that street in Topeka, Kansas, nothing else was touched or damaged. It was if the tornado had never happened, and it was also as if someone had taken a giant eraser and deleted them from existence. The revealed secret that had been concealed from her for so long had made her beyond furious. Ultimately, her trust had been betrayed and she now was unsure of who could be trusted, if anyone at all. As she curled up in the foetal position to find a modicum of comfort in her maelstrom of rage, she just couldn’t shake the thought of what Q had done. As she curled up at the core of Athena Sirius, her rage refused to subside, and increased in ferocity in turn increasing the temperature of the star. The thought of her parent during happier times popped into her mind, and it was then that she had an epiphany. There was a possibility that she could see her parents again; not by time travel as that would be re-living what has been, or undoing what had been done as then they would be forever hunted by the Q. She convinced herself that the only way she would ever see them again would be in the afterlife, if it existed. Although she had been taught that for every reaction there was a reaction, for every cause there was an effect, she knew that the act she contemplated would have consequences that she wouldn’t have to deal with. In her final act, she summoned all of her powers, and all of her rage to accelerate the star to prematurely become a supernova. As she committed suicide, her final thought was that of being with her parents again. As the last embers of her human and Q existence faded to nothing, Amanda Rogers walked towards her parents, who in turn made their way to meet her.

There wasn’t much left o what could be recognized as a standard Starfleet bridge layout. Various gasses sprayed and hissed out of ruptured pipes and conduits. Liquids cascaded out of pipes, mostly causing sparks as the droplets made contact with exposed circuitry. Cables hung menacingly from the ceiling, sparking erratically in some bizarre electrical dance. Where the viewscreen once was, a shimmering clear forcefield had taken its place. Whatever lighting hadn’t been damaged bathed the bridge in a pulsing glow, as the only source of illumination left cast itself ominously. What consoles remained intact were not functioning or flickering sporadically. Scorch marks decorated the walls and floor of the control centre of the mighty vessel, as it continued to drift without power. Bodies littered the bridge, and to the untrained it appeared that there were no survivors.

Simon groaned as he untangled himself from the painfully unnatural position he awoke in, only to find that his left arm was limp and most definitely broken. He propped himself against the remains of his chair, as his concussed mind tried to ascertain the situation. He surveyed the room first for any lifesigns amongst the fallen, and noticed from what he could see of those not covered by debris, that there were definitely a few of those who had survived, as indicating by the steady rise and fall of their upper torso. He slapped his combadge with his good arm, only to hear the slapping of flesh on flesh as his hand hit his bare, exposed chest where his uniform had been ripped. It was difficult at best to stay focussed as the overwhelming feelings of impending unconsciousness buffeted him with wave after wave, threatened to engulf him. The nearest office to him was the ship’s newly appointed Science Officer and Chief Of Sciences, Lieutenant Sharon Miller, who had just recently boarded the ship from being stationed in Kelnar territory on Athena Sirius. As he noticed her stirring he thought to himself that her tenure aboard the Phoenix had started less than auspiciously. Sharon was luckier than mostin the fact that she wasn’t covered in debris such as roof support struts, she hadn’t landed in an unnatural position, and that she was still breathing as well as regaining consciousness. The air was marred by the tinges of various leakages and smoke, but it was still breathable. As she supported herself into a seated upright position and leaned against the remains of a console, she found herself surprised at the lack of pain and that it seemed she hadn’t broken or sprained anything. It was simply bizarre, considering the vessel had taken the full force of the exploding space station. However, she was more than thankful that she had fared better than most. Quickly becoming aware of the perilous situation they were in, she found herself facing the shimmering forcefield that protected everything from being sucked into the vacuum of space. The field covered a gaping maw that was once the home of the forward bulkhead of the bridge, and the main viewscreen. Debris now occupied the space that had been previously occupied by the alien space station that Klix had beamed over to. The intense glowing of the Athena Sirius star reflected of the rotating metallic detritus.
Sharon hadn’t met Klix, as the walking, talking, man machine had already transported across to the platform by the time she had come aboard. In fact, she felt that the only crew member that she knew was the Captain and that had been mainly by communication via subspace during her application process. Of course, she had meticulously researched the Starfleet service files on the senior officers of the Phoenix, and the ship’s mandate. However, she only knew the ship and her colleagues on that level, and had yet to have the opportunity to meet them and get to know them. Taking in the potential finality of the situation at hand, she realized that she possibly wouldn’t meet them at all.

Amidst the chaos, she barely even noticed Simon trying to attract her attention. His voice was shallow and raspy at best, and that she could see he was in a bad way. She moved over to him and tried to make him more comfortable. As he started to drift into shock, he started to mutter as he sweated profusely from his brow. “Gavvadar....will want Starfleet’s head....for this....what have i done...?....The Kelnar....and the....hostages....and the Phoenix....waiting to die....” Suddenly, Sharon felt a powerful force rise within the deepest recesses of her soul and her subconsciousness. It was as if she had suddenly become removed from the situation, and was now a spectator, whilst at the same time it felt as if someone, or something else, was in control of her actions. Yet those actions, although never employed before, seemed to be natural, almost like an instinct. She placed one hand on the pressure points of Simon’s face, in a manner similar to a Vulcan mind meld. Her other hand rested on his broken arm, as they started to breathe deeply in unison, at a very slow, yet steady and controlled pace. Just as the shock and delirium began to take hold, his muttering ceased. To his surprise, the pain in his arm had dissipated and it seemed it was no longer broken as he started to move it with ease. “Thank you”, he uttered in gratitude, as Sharon regained composure as she swiftly exited her trance like state. She realized that her actions seemed to come out of the common humanoid instinct of survival, and that her half Deltan physiology was more powerful than she thought. The sun entered its dying throes, and illuminated the area with its fiery orange glow. Increasing in mass exponentially, the Athena Sirius system was moments away from being consigned to the scientific history books, and becoming a cloud of interstellar debris. Simon instinctively lifted up his healed arm to shield his eyes from the glare of the star, whilst Sharon mimicked the movement. Suddenly, the orange brilliance changed to a blinding white light as the Phoenix was engulfed.
 

The Phoenix was rolling like a ship in a storm as it drifted without power and control. Kirsty and Sodak were shoved from wall to wall as the ship continued to roll from left to right. The emergency red lighting bathed the battered, ruptured corridor in a crimson hue. Loose overhead cables threatened to snag their necks as they made their way to the escape pods as quick as their bruised bodies would allow. If it wasn’t ruptured pipes spraying out hot gasses, or loose deck plating ready to give way at the slightest foot pressure. As they rounded the corner, the hatches to the pods lay open, beckoning an occupant to enter. Salvation was at hand as Sodak encouraged Kirsty to summon the strength to cover the last remaining yards. Distant rumblings inside the ship and out grew in volume and appeared to be getting closer. “We haven’t got much time;” shouted the Vulcan over the increasing din. Before they entered their respective one person escape vehicles, Sodak raised his hand in the Vulcan salute, placed it onto Kirsty’s hand that returned the salutation, and uttered the word; “Remember.” He then grasped her passionately as they kissed for what seemed like an eternity, and then parted. The ramps automatically raised into their locking position as the launching sequence swiftly activated once interior sensors recognised occupancy of the craft. Kirsty felt a sharp jolt followed by a downward lurch as explosive bolts detonated, separating the pod from the Phoenix. Sodak never felt the customary jolt or heard the sounds that they had come to expect should an emergency escape situation occur. It was a mandatory part of Starfleet training, which would be performed during the Academy years aboard a training vessel. Glancing at the control panel and navigational display, it seemed that the pod was still attached to the ship. As he tapped the touch sensitive LCARS display, the connecting points of the vehicle were flashing red. The explosive bolts of the pod had fused with the hull, failing to detonate. As he activated information on the navidisplay showing the impending supernova, he whispered; “Remember.”
 

Klix found himself in a diagnostic booth. Apart from a control panel with flashing lights on the wall, to which the booth was connected to, the room was pitch black. He ascertained though that wherever he was, somehow he didn’t think he was in any immediate danger. After all, why would he be placed in a booth that seemed to be checking that all his systems were functioning within normal parameters? This was definitely not the act of a hostile, or a captor. He found himself pondering the great machine he had been transported from prior to finding himself in his current location.The platform was siphoning off the excess energy of the Athena Sirius star, to slow down the process of it eventually becoming a supernova. His thought processes deduced that it could have only delayed the inevitable, not prevented it. Therefore, if the machine was built to protect the inhabitants to give them enough time to evacuate, the question remained were those who had built it still around. He noticed a movement in front of the booth. It was as if the blackness was shimmering and coalescing into some kind of shape or form. Then his eyes were overwhelmed with the familiarity of what was taking shape. A walking, talking machine, just like him, except there were of course differences enough to show that the machine was an individual. He, (which seemed a fitting description to Klix), walked towards the booth, albeit slowly. In his hand, he gripped a metal support which seemed to double as an extra leg. Klix searched his memory banks for an appropriate description, and found that his counterpart sported what was commonly known as a walking stick, indicating frailty. Answering Klix’s thought processes; he filled him in on the missing pieces. “The station you are now residing on will generate a shield to contain and compress the resulting explosion. Then it would dissipate and evaporate any remains, where i would then put in its place an artificial star.” Klix’s counterpart spoke in a raspy voice, indicating another aspect of age. “Yes, i can read your thoughts. In fact i can read everyone’s thoughts who visit here. To which it won’t be long before the others arrive.” The old machine started to cough, which the sound itself gave off a metallic resonance. The leg which seemed the weakest due to the walking stick providing support, started to emit a low grinding noise, followed by a sharp pop as a green, viscous liquid seeped out of his knee plating. The leakage swiftly stopped as the machine’s redundant backup systems, similar to a healing process, kicked in and started to heal the rupture. “Damn pipes. My legs ain’t what they used to be”, he muttered. The diagnostic booth emitted a series of clicks and beeps as several of the red lights on the holding clasps around Klix’s torso changed to green. The locks and restraints released him whilst all the connectors and tubules retracted. It seemed that whatever cycle the machine had Klix under was now complete. As he walked out of the booth, he gestured to the old machine to get into the booth himself as Klix could see that he was way overdue for a once over. “He....he....he....cough....cough....there was a time when i was like the others and regularly attended the maintenance booths. I kept the routine up when they all left so i would stay in optimum condition and functioning within normal specifications. But then after hearing nothing from the others as millennia passed, it became clear to me that the golden glow of near immortality had faded to a dull ember....” Klix interrupted as the many questions swirled around his mind and threatened to overload him. “Others?....Who are the others?....Are they like you?....Like me?....Am i you and you i?....Where am i?....” “STOP!” A panel opened in the side of the old machine’s head as a cable snaked out, seeking a connection. Without commanding it, a similar panel opened on Klix, which the snaking cable clicked into as it went inside to attach to a connecting port. Klix saw it all, as his eyes randomly twitched in movement from side to side, as if he was at the stage of sleep where rapid eye movement occurs. Yet his eyelids were wide open. The old machine just stared ahead, his eyes fixated on Klix as the memory transfer took place. As he saw the images, and read the thoughts, Klix and the old one began speaking in tandem.
 

As the brilliant white glare seemed to fade, Sharon lowered her hand which had been protecting her eyes. She was immediately puzzled as she was no longer sat amidst the wreckage of the gutted bridge of the Phoenix, but on a hilltop with a solitary tree providing shade from a sun that seemed familiar in its light pink glow. The hill overlooked a small village, whilst in the distance, tall spires and structures seemed to indicate a vast metropolis brushing against the clouds. She thought to herself that if this was meant to be her own personal afterlife, then it wasn’t exactly what she had always believed it to be. She had expected long lost loved ones, and deceased relatives would be there to greet her as she crossed over, whilst some gentle omnipotent being would be supervising her transition. This was far from how she had dreamt it would be, and the unfamiliarity of the situation was unsettling. She was abruptly startled by the wailing of a baby as a bald woman sat under the shade of a tree that was uncannily similar to a weeping willow. Looking slightly distraught as the woman tried to pacify the child, Sharon put the woman’s expression down to something that most mothers were familiar with; a child that couldn’t communicate its complaints and expected the parent to naturally have an understanding of the problem. As the woman gently rocked the bay back and forth in her arms, whilst humming a song, the wails subsided as the infant nuzzled against its mothers chest. The young mother clearly couldn’t see Sharon, as she walked towards her, and it was clear to Sharon that she was merely a spectator, not a participant. The hairless woman suddenly looked up and it appeared as if she was staring at Sharon, but was actually just admiring the hilltop view as a gentle breeze slightly whipped through the branches. As she looked back down adoringly into the eyes of the baby, a trickle of tears gently cascaded down her cheeks, whilst the child made the occasional burbling sound. As the baby nuzzled to find a comfort spot, it left a patch of drool on her mother’s grey Starfleet blouse. A bald elder woman suddenly appeared and stretched out her arms in a beckoning fashion, whilst the young mother rose expertly cradling the baby. Kissing the child on her forehead, the young mother uttered; “You will always be a child of many worlds and many hearts.” The elder woman now cradled the baby, who didn’t seem at all disturbed by the passing from one to another. “You are doing the right thing. A starship is no place for a child.” Surrounded by a column of glittery lights that emitted a slight shrill sound, the mother disappeared, as the column changed to a bright white glare as it engulfed her, and then Sharon.
 

“....I am Onyx....Guardian of Athena Sirius....at a time when it seemed the universe was heading for turmoil and chaos, and not unfolding as it should, we dispersed to observe, protect, and intervene when dictated....even spatial phenomena that had been designated as part of the natural evolution of the galaxy would be observed....Malyx was present at the Vulcan Time Of Awakening....Krix was present when the Andorians leapt to the stars....I was present at the Tarsus Gate, as the Nimbin star bathed the construct with its warm, shimmering glow, enveloping the eggs in the Horsen hatchery to be born....I was present at the first mating of the once sworn nemesis, the Horain and the Taahn, which subsequently led to the egg laying of a new silicone based hybrid; the Horta....I was present on Crayos when the first rains in a century came, yet as he liquid cascaded from the skies, it made no sound, even as the droplets impacted the ground....the overcrowded, noisy world was silenced, and for the first time in a century, the inhabitants truly discovered the meaning of the phrase, silence is golden....I was present....Phylos Prime....the genocide of angels....you know us as the Firstborn....the first races know us as Primaxians....the Vulcans called us Logicans....Why are you here?....Because it is meant to be....you are meant to be here....Where is here?....A metallic sphere the size of a sun....with the power of a hundred suns....in subspace....The others?....your surviving crew members of course!....Commence complete mind transfer....”
 

The last memory that Rez experienced was hitting his head hard on the tactical console. He didn’t even experience the pain as he was knocked unconscious almost instantaneously. Yet now, as he stood upright and conscious, he felt no pain. As he adjusted to his whereabouts, it was plain as day that he was no longer aboard the Phoenix. He was definitely on some kind of starship though, that much he could be certain of, and although the displays and readouts had an air of familiarity, the answer to his location wasn’t forthcoming. The interior of the room itself was filled with what appeared to be medical equipment and surgical apparatus. There were two people in the room, and although he could see them, they couldn’t see him. It was then that he was witnessing a violent altercation between his despised former Captain, Matthew Dougherty, and the former Son’a leader. At this point in time, Dougherty was an Admiral and overseeing operations on the joint Federation/Son’a duck blind mission. The squabble had taken a turn for the worse and had become more physical, as it looked as though the Starfleet veteran fared worse than his strong Son’a nemesis. As Ahdar Ru’afo’s hands tightened around the Admiral’s throat whilst placing him in a skin stretching cradle, it felt as though to Rez it was his very own hands strangling Dougherty. It was then that Rez felt he was no longer a spectator, but a participant....the murderous participant. The attending medical drone, to all intents and purposes, carried out the programming of Onyx to the letter, as it almost completed repairs to Rez’s broken body. The droid had deduced it was time to revive the human, and take to Onyx, who was gathering the remaining humans he had managed to save before their destruction of their vessel. The medical drone hadn’t accounted for its patient awaking in a blind rage, leaping off the biobed in its direction and clutching at the drones metallic throat with murderous intent. In his barely conscious state, Rez didn’t hear or acknowledge the medics warning of his dangerously high blood pressure. In his mind, Rez continued the grisly practice of murder most horrid.
 

The mind transfer wasn’t only a gift, but as far as Onyx was concerned, Klix inheritance and right. For many years, Klix had not known his background or purpose. Even when the Dominion surrendered all that they had annexed, including Exo III, his former residence where he was found inanimate, he was still none the wiser to who he was. Onyx had filled him in, but due to the many questions pondered, leading to so many more questions generated by Klix’s mind, Onyx decided it would be more efficient to initiate a mind transfer. Klix discovered he belonged to an ancient race of humanoid like machines, although purely mechanical. Onyx was one of the Guardians left behind to protect the Sirians, as they were known as then. Athena Sirius was home to the Kelnar; a religious race completely opposing anything technological, and the Gavvadar; a race that embraced technology. His task had been to prevent their destruction, which would ultimately be caused by the Athena Sirius star eventually coming to the end of its natural life and going supernova. The star would still go supernova, but Onyx had a plan to deal with the impending disaster, with little repercussions, whilst the sphere he resided in for many years would take the stars place as the systems new sun. The sphere had the energy to generate the power of a sun infinitely and eternally. The Gavvadar and the Kelnar were one of the last remaining first races of the galaxy, and would ultimately band together under their ancient name of the Sirians. It had been foreseen that the mutual discovery of peace between their species would give rise to their prominence as peace would be found in a tempestuous part of the quadrant. Onyx had not only answered all of Klix’s questions, and imported knowledge of his ancestors, but he had also transferred the sum total of his lifetime’s knowledge, spanning the known galaxy. When Onyx had announced the completion of the transfer, the cables attached to Klix’s head retracted, as the glow from Onyx’s eyes faded as he collapsed backwards to the floor. As Klix composed himself he rushed to Onyx’s aid, only to discover he had deactivated himself, permanently. Klix then knew what was expected as he gathered the others in preparation for escape as Onyx’s plan was about to come to fruition. As Klix made his way out of the chamber and into the pure white corridors, in an attempt to gather the survivors of the Phoenix, the sphere exited subspace into normal space, and began to absorb the supernova. Energy discharges crackled across the chrome surface as a million year old plan started to unfold.
 

Simon found himself in a white room, with no seams to show where the walls met the ceiling. There were no windows and although the room was brilliantly lit, there was no discernible light source, artificial or otherwise. He was the sole occupant of the room, and wondered too if he was the sole survivor, if he had survived at all. Although he felt as alive as he normally felt, and had noticed that he no longer wore any scorch marks or bruises, he felt a modicum of uncertainty. For all he knew, he could be well and truly dead, and now residing in non corporeal form, otherwise known as a ghost.He could be in heaven, or hell, or even worse, in purgatory. Either way, the uncertainty was a source of great discomfort. Even if he was alive, the future wouldn’t be rosy, he thought, as he would go down in Starfleet infamy. The Phoenix was barely weeks out of drydock, and it was certain to him that it had been destroyed. He had hoped that the crew had fared better than the ship, and had escaped by any means necessary. The ear defect that had plagued him months earlier appeared to be returning as he noticed the first signs of the troublesome irritation. The signs were similar to the low whistling of a breeze, but then the whistling became more pronounced and started to sound very similar to whispering. Like a slug to the head, voices appeared at volume as Simon clutched his ears and dropped to the floor.
 

It was the closes thing he could imagine to hell, but he knew that he had sworn an oath to heal the sick. That was exactly what he was going to do as he moved from bed to bed, tending to the injured officers of the late U.S.S. Phoenix. But there were those who he couldn’t heal, which it was then up to him to try his best and make their last moments as comfortable as possible. The brilliant white room was vast, and adorned with advanced alien medical and scientific equipment. State of the art biobeds with touchscreen, multitasking displays, multitudes of trolleys and cabinets with synthetic and organic medicines, and a huge number of different types of medical droids filled the vast space. Although technology wasn’t his favourite assistant and preferred method of practicing method, he found himself impressed at what was at his disposal. One of the biobed alarms shrieked as a droid beckoned for the doctors attention. A Klingon engineer appeared to be going into some kind of arrest as his body convulsed and bucked against the restraints that barely held him in place. Upon closer examination, Kurt could see that the veins on the side of the Klingons temples were swelling and turning blue. Immediately picking up a hypospray to dull the pain, as he continued to scan with a tricorder, his expression was one of concern for his patient. The convulsions stopped as the Klingon looked right into Doctor Coey’s eyes as the arm restraints finally snapped under the strain. Bringing his hands up and placing them on Kurt’s head, he roared his final words; “Walk with me Kahless. Roar with me Kahless. Let them know i am coming.” His hands suddenly dropped as his body went still; the monitor confirmed his suspicions by displaying a constant flatline where there was once a heartbeat. Knowing full well the proud tradition of Klingons, he shook his head. “I don’t believe this!” He held open the engineers eyes with his fingers whilst throwing back his head and roaring. Doctor Kurt Coey announced to Sto-Vo-Kor know that Ensign Wrax was due for imminent arrival.
 

Rez didn’t even feel or notice his hands bleeding as in his minds eye, he had firm hold of a human throat, yet in reality he was trying to strangle a machine. As the maniacal grin covered his face, Rez was startled out of his murderous reverie as Klix blasted through the walls with sheer strength. He couldn’t quite fathom what compelled him to barrel through the wall, apart from an overwhelming urge that he hadn’t felt for a long time, and that was to help someone in distress. Yet there were two in distress; his friend and colleague, but also a sentient machine created by his own kind. Klix pounded over to where the two lay tussling, grabbed Rez by the collar of his tattered uniform, and threw him off the droid. Klix quickly checked over the medidrone, then went over to Rez, who was now in a sitting position. Rez started to shake as he gazed at his hands before him, which were stained with a mixture of his own blood from cuts and lubricant from the drone. “I....i....was....t....t....trying to kill the medical robot yet....yet....in my mind....it was someone else....what have i done?” Klix tried to reassure Rez as quickly and tactfully as possible while at the same time being mindful that time was running out to put Onyx’s plan into action. It was clear that Rez was going into shock and as Klix explained their situation, it seemed to give the security and tactical officer something to focus on. The room around them suddenly started to flicker as it changed from its brilliant whiteness to what seemed like a room full of holographic emitters.
 

Thanks to the Doctor’s gifted medical expertise, Andy and the surviving crew were well on the road to recovery. Although it was also down to the assistance of the highly advanced technology at his disposal as well as the medical robots, that made the initial task at hand more manageable. As the most senior officer on scene. Andy had felt it was his duty to help as best as he could by going from bed to bed, talking to the crew, and providing reassurance where he could. But as far as he was concerned, he had seen far too much death , and for those that couldn’t be saved, he tried his best to comfort them during their last moments. The loss of the Rhaanderite twins Nake and Labe had hit him the hardest, and he knew that their deaths would resonate throughout the crew for a long time to come. The burns to their body and internal injuries had been irreparable, even with the medicines and equipment Doctor Coey had to hand. They had been fine officers and he envisioned a time when they would be passing down their experiences typical of their species. He vowed to himself that as soon as they got a new ship, if they got a new ship, that he would ensure the bodies were taken to Rhaandar, and received a traditional customary burial. Wherever they were at this point in time didn’t even enter into the equation as he tried to focus on the future, and getting out of the place that they were currently in. As all the officers and himself dematerialised, his last thought prior to that moment was that staying put just wasn’t an option.
 

The cacophony of voices threatened to overwhelm his mind and as he clutched his ears, the pain was unlike anything he had ever experienced. In the chaos and madness of the vocal onslaught, like in the eye of a tornado, Simon managed to find the calm centre of the storm. From what the Captain could gather, the crew were being transported from their respective locations to a gigantic empty room, whilst he sense that there seemed to be a tremendous surge of energy building up from somewhere. It was then that Klix stood out in his mind amidst everyone. “....Captain, it’s happening....the ship is ready....you have to leave....the ship is ready....you have to leave....” Before Simon could respond, he dematerialised.
 

The whole of the surviving crew were together in the vast chamber. This one was unlike the others and just resembled, as Simon thought, a giant hangar deck of a space station. As he looked at the remainder of the crew, he felt disappointed with himself. Although he was following orders and couldn’t predict the outcome of the mission, as per each mission order, he still felt that he had failed all those who had put faith in him. As he was about to address them, their thoughts came into his mind. Sharon; “You haven’t failed us....you were flying into an unknown situation....” Rez; “....something any Starfleet flag officer....” Kurt; “....or any officer in general faces pretty much all the time. As a Doctor, i face battles against unknown diseases and ailments on a daily basis....” Klix; “....the unknown situation you have flown into now becomes a known situation you are about to fly out of....” With that comment, Klix raised his arms with his hands outstretched as if he was reaching towards something. His metallic hands began to emit a pulsating glow that grew in intensity with each pulse. Unseen doors seemed to open in the ceiling as a platform lowered slowly, whilst through thought Klix explained everything. Simon had quickly grown accustomed to communication by thought, and although he had felt at times like he never really had been close to any officers or crew he had lead, for the first time in his career he didn’t feel disconnected. Connection was a sensation and experience that he felt was highly underrated. The thoughts all ceased as silence descended, caused by all eyes focusing on the slowly lowering platform. Atop, resting on landing struts was up to now what had been thought destroyed. Klix broke the silence; “Although the vessel looks like the Phoenix, it is a facsimile. However, it has the same technological specifications and requirements to get you home, and away from here....fast.” Klix was speaking in a tone and manner that unnerved the Captain somewhat. “Klix, you are speaking like you aren’t coming with us....” “Captain. I finally know who i am. I know my purpose. I know my place in the universe. I know my destiny. Goodbye. I wish you all well.” With a flash of light, the crew were no longer in the hangar, and aboard the lookalike Phoenix, as it streaked out of the Athena Sirius system at high warp, subsequently jumping to slipstream velocities. Klix had come home and was at peace as he, the Guardian Of Athena Sirius, brought an age old plan to fruition, as the spheres transformation became complete. As the artificial sun became the newest additional light to a universe of lights, the brightest enigma that Simon had ever know ceased to be, as he and the others noticed the absence of his mind and the sensation of his permanence.
 

As the ship streaked through the stars on its automated slipstream trajectory for Earth, Simon could still make out the thoughts of the crew, and vice versa. Mostly there seemed to be a collective fear of what to expect upon arrival at Earth. The ship could not be deviated from its course and only essential systems could be accessed. The ships computer was in charge and the crew were just along for the ride, it seemed. The bridge crew just sat or stood at their usual stations, inactive and unsure what to do with themselves. The rest of the crew were in their quarters, as there wasn’t any need for anyone to be doing their usual duties. Automation was taking care of practically everything, which left the crew feeling redundant. The thoughts seemed to be getting weaker, and less distinct, as slowly but surely, they faded to a whisper, then ultimately nothing. Once more Simon felt disconnected, but vowed to himself that he had learnt a lesson and would get to know his colleagues and crew better, starting immediately. There was a noticeable thought that he hadn’t picked up during the experience from one of the senior officers, who wasn’t present on the bridge. Before he knew it, he had arrived outside Counsellor Walker’s quarters, as if he journeyed there on auto pilot. It took several taps of the door chime before the command was issued for the door to be opened. The normally beautifully lit and airy office was bathed in darkness, with the only noise permeating the silence being the sobbing of Kirsty, as she sat in a foetal position in a corner. “Sodak....he’s gone....do not grieve....my time has come....” She repeated the sentence between sobs and he catching of her breath, as Simon sat with her in the darkness.
 

Elsewhere in the universe, a council of supreme beings had convened in a hastily arranged emergency briefing. They had arrived by their usual mode of travel; the snapping of fingers followed by a flash of light taking them wherever or whenever they chose. The council leader spoke in earnest to get proceedings moving. “I was conversing with the Guardian Of Forever on Planet Gateway, when it was he who made me aware of the latest disaster caused by one of our fellow beings, once more tarnishing our reputation.” One of the members spoke up; “I hope this is worthy of our attention as it has interrupted my chess game with Trelane, in the quarter finals of the Universe Master Chess Tournament.” The others followed suit by issuing their own complaints of being disturbed in the midst of something they deemed equally as important. The leader snapped his fingers as their mouths were sealed, to which they retorted by snapping their own fingers to unseal them. “Amanda Rogers has left a trail of disaster in her wake, culminating in her own suicide. She had been under the guiding hand of one of our own, who in turn had put themselves under an obligation of duty of care towards her.” The rest of the members began muttering amongst one another. The mutterings though, were audible enough that one way or another, they meant the same. Curious as to who had failed the Continuum in their responsibility, the leader answered the members; “I summon Q.”

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