Previous Next

Steps Forward

Posted on May 12, 2015 @ 1:52am by Lieutenant Eve Dalziel & Captain Kassandra Thytos & Thomas Varn
Edited on on May 12, 2015 @ 1:53am

Mission: The Lights of Hyperion

“Steps Forward”

(Continued from “Meet The Captain”)



Scene: Turbolift -> Corridor

Stardate: [2.5]0512.0033


The sounds and feel of the ship seemed different now as if shadow had crept in with the crew unaware filling the void that was left by Solomon’s absence. Every sound and motion that made now seemed to be laced and weighted with echoes of his absence and the scent of remorseful reminiscing. Thomas’ breath seemed unusually heavy, at least for one that was riding in a turbolift exerting no energy or force, while waiting to arrive. His eyes were closed and for one moment, one brief moment he lost himself in the hum of the ride forgetting all that had happened and all that may come. As the lift slowly came to a stop Thomas’ mind slipped out of analyzing his situation and into a lack of energy, both emotional and physical, induced trance.

“THOMAS, ” the voice shrieked through the silence as the doors opened revealing Thomas inside.

Shaking his head and blinking he looked out into the corridor before back at himself and sighed. Once again reality had asserted itself and now the painful reminder that he was covered in filth and Solomon’s blood. Raising his hand he slowly stepped out trying to calm the horrified expression now forming over Sylvia’s face, “it’s not mine.”

“Oh, thank heavens. Wait, who’s…” she began watching his face before running through the list of those that had left the ship, “and how did you get it on you?”

“Solomon’s, it’s Solomon’s and as far as the how all I will say is when we finished the device we left to take it to the Captain only to be ambushed and he was killed for it. By the time I got to him after being separated it was, I couldn’t, there was nothing I could do,” he replied moving slowly down the corridor stopping only when he realized she wasn’t following and in uniform, “are you off duty now?”

Doing her best to break a soft smile she shook her head, “almost, Commander Chricton wants to talk to us about possibly getting another location ready for the families and such within the refugees.”

Nodding Thomas looked down, “i’m going to go get cleaned up. Maybe, we can talk later?”

Sylvia’s eyes almost seemed to sparkle with that request and if he hadn’t been covered in blood splatter she would have kissed his cheek; but, for now he would have to settle with a smile and nod, “definitely.”

Thomas’ lip slowly curled into a soft smile before he looked up and held up his hand, “Sylvia, wait.”

Turning and looking down the corridor she smiled, “yes?”

Thomas’ mind quickly went back to it analytical side, “please be careful, I know we scanned the refugees; but, from what I could see when we boarded there is no way of knowing if something didn’t get through.”

She smiled and nodded at his concern, “I’m sure we will be well protected against any weapons they may have slipped through and we will have what escort we can if necessary.”

“I know, but there is more they could have brought other than weapons,” he stated softly watching as she left waving slowly.


Location: Cns’ Quarters


Amused and strangely satisfied at what she had seen between Captain Smooshy and the enigma that was Selyara Chen, Eve decided it was as good a time as any to regroup. Owen seemed only too happy to handle the scheduling and some of the care of whoever chose to seek a Counsellor’s guidance. Besides, none of them were going anywhere. The desire to help the obvious ‘nut cases’ (that was the technical term of course), while thinking of what possible psychoses lurked beneath the carefully crafted exteriors of the others, had kept her mind working overtime. But she was only one person.

While a sonic shower in the solitude of her quarters was no substitute for a night of sleep, it did a lot more for her than it had a right to. A freshly replicated uniform lay on the bed. She slipped an impossibly light and silky thermal tank top and shorts over her bra and underwear as an underpinning. No amount of surgery could change her physiology, and she favored the extra layer to stay warm.

She sat in a chair next to the plain bureau, hesitating at getting dressed. She closed her eyes, realizing how tired she was and how comfortable the chair was. It would take no more than the inkling of a suggestion for her to be asleep. She pushed up before the thought could take further hold and replicated an energy drink. It consisted of espresso, sweetened chocolate, and a small dose of a stabilized edible form of cortropine. The short glass of brown liquid had a pleasant bitterness.

Eve hesitated once more as her hands touched the durable, familiar material. They were far flung from the current Federation and Starfleet in both distance and purpose. They had been disenfranchised and excommunicated. They were outlaws and outcasts and outliers.

Uncertainty stirred in the pit of her stomach as she adjusted the rank pips and comm badge. She had to remind herself they were trying to restore things to the way they should have been, by neutralizing the Neo Essentialists. But there was a chance that they wouldn’t succeed.

“No,” she said sternly to her reflection in the mirror. Her desire was to eliminate all doubt, and it wasn’t really working. The nagging concerns were as unwelcome as Richard Edgerton inviting them to a cyanide tea party in the Van Allen belts without a spacesuit.

Lieutenant Dalziel adjusted her ponytail, never taking her glance off of the gray eyes staring back at her. She had the sense of being a tremendous fraud. She wasn’t human. She wasn’t an officer any more, technically speaking. But years of training and experience couldn’t be erased or forgotten. And the job in front of her was no mirage, either.

Besides, it was all she knew how to be.

The rolling internal dialogue was interrupted by the brusque voice of Major Thytos, [[Dalziel- ya busy?]]

Eve smiled. It was good to hear her voice. “What are you, some kind of comedian?”

There was a pause that the Counsellor wasn’t used to from the hardcore Marine. It was like she was annoyed with someone. [[I hear ya. Anyways... I reckon we need some assistance with our ‘guests’ as they outnumber us at least seventy ta one. You up for it?]]

“Up for what, exactly?”

[[We got too many indians and not enough chiefs- someone’s gotta patrol these guys. Keep ‘em on the straight and narrow.]]

“I’m not Security.”

[[You got brawn, don’cha? You got fists, right? You can shoot?]]

Eve shrugged mentally. She was no petite flower. Even a blind Marine could see that. “Yes.”

[[Listen kid, it’s not like we have anyone else, we havta make do with what we got. You got some brains too, God help ya. All that psuedo psycho mumbo jumbo. You could be checkin’ for the criminal element and separatin’ it from the run of the mill riff raff.]]

“Okay… once we find them, *if* we find them, where do we put them?”

[[There’s details you ain’t aware of yet. I’m just askin’ ya to meet up in the barracks so we can go over things.]]

Eve paused for a moment. Seven thousand plus restless unknown and questionable quality refugees versus a dozen or so crazy people. At least the Counsellor’s office had backup. The Marines didn’t, and the Major was still recovering.

[[I’m not gonna say please or beg at yer feet so it’s wastin’ time if yer lookin’ to hear that,]] Kass said impatiently.

“Count me in. When?”


Scene: Marine Barracks


“That you, kid?” the Major said as Lieutenant Dalziel arrived.

“The last time I checked,” Eve said dryly. “Nice to see you up and around.” Kass had been joined by Jake, one of his engineering assistants, Sylvia Warren, and an immense, raw-boned man who had to be Gunny Bellecotte.

“I’m sure it ain’t no surprise that we have quite a sitch below decks,” Kassandra said raggedly. “We don’t want to give ‘em any ideas that they have the upper hand.” Seven thousand reluctant immigrants from one of the most sinister space stations in existence were now trying to cohabitate on the rogue vessel. It was a given that they all wouldn’t be on their best behavior.

“Routine patrols with armored pairs should be enough to provide a presence, to reassure those who are just trying to keep themselves in one piece from those who want to stir the pot. I'd also like to start sending some of the engineers in wearing Marine armor, make it seem like we have more people than we do," the bulky Sergeant added.

“What about potential staff? Do you think we’ll be able to find anyone with the qualifications and attitude who can help us out?” Basic infrastructure was sorely lacking with the PHOENIX crew,

Kass allowed herself to chuckle. Kane may have pissed her off relegating Barnes back to the fray of ‘Shanty Town’ for the moment, but he had accepted nearly the whole of the other ideas they had without much fuss. “One step ahead of ya, Missy.We’re going to establish a “safe zone” of sorts where folks either too weak to protect themselves or useful and willing to have some structure in their lives.”

It was a logistics nightmare. But Crichton had done an excellent job at turning the vast cargo bays into a no frills holding area for the escapees from LIMBO, while ensuring safety of the ship’s crew.

“We have all the power and modification down pat; but, there still remains the problem of the extra mouths that these families brought with them,” Jake stated looking over the information collected from the initial boarding.

The group looked from one to another before turning back to him. Eve sat there silent only to end it in an abrupt statement, “extra mouths, Commander?”

Jake nodded, “these animals that were listed and brought aboard. Some of them I don’t know what they are and could not begin to tell you if they are dangerous and need to be restrained.”

“Do we have someone on board who could,” Cindy asked looking at the impromptu think tank that had been assembled.

Shaking his head Jake laid the padd down, “Cade could tell you possibly if they are healthy; but, not specifically what they are. Not to mention if they need special care to keep them as well as others safe.”

“Commander, I know someone who may be able to help,” Sylvia chimed in stepping forward to the group.

Jake smiled, “the question Mrs. Warren is will Thomas want to. I understand he wasn’t exactly willing with the scanner project that was asked of him”

“I’m sure he will,” Sylvia reassured him.

“Wait, how would he help us exactly,” Kass asked turning from Jake to Sylvia, “ and don’t tell me he specializes in animals.”

Sylvia smiled as she doesn’t get to talk about his field of study often and recommend him, “not exactly, Thomas major field of study is Xenobiology. So, he could possibly take a glance at the animals and get more information any of us could."

“It’d take more time than we’ve got for him to go around lookin’, so my proposal is that we send the Marines in with body holocams- we need to demonstrate that there is a military presence on board otherwise things are gonna get hairy- and they can take pictures of any unknown species, in their assigned cargo bays,” Kassandra suggested, “Plus, no offence Miss, I’m not exactly sure how well Wingding can fight- From what my Marines said, he’s strong but ain’t so great on the fighting front. He’d need an escort, and I’d like to get this done all at once. I’m effectively out of the action until Miss Rochemonte repairs my sensor nets, but I think Horatio here would be the best person to provide one to Thomas- He’s huge, so I don’t think anyone’s going to try and start anything with him as a guard.”

The group had come to an agreement as a plan of action moving forward. It would be one that would expose numerous individuals to the refugees; but, if they could fully pull this off then the ship would seem more like home to more than just the staff.


Scene: Quarter’s of Thomas Varn & Sylvia Warren


Looking at himself in the mirror Thomas’ mind processed the urge to take another shower after the three he had taken and bath he finished trying to get the clean feeling to return. He knew it wasn’t something that was physically there, and all the blood that was there no longer remained; but, the feeling that he need to shower remained and even his wings seemed less white than before.

Stretching out his hand he slowly moved it across the mirror leaving streaks in the faint remnant of steam that had lingered. Sighing before walking away his gaze fell over the quarters and it's current state of minor disarray. His previous clothing had been disposed of and now he felt lost without a purpose.

"Computer using my last coat design can you alter the fabric to be a lighter material while changing the color to a Navy blue," he asked his mind stretching for something to do.


"Very well, make the necessary adjustments as well as replicate a pair of pants same style as previous design and material color white," he ordered stopping then chuckling to himself, "if all else fails I could be a fashion designer for winged people. I'd have at least one customer. Speaking of which computer one pair of boots model after Starfleet issue color white please."

As the machine beeped he removed the articles of clothing causing an instantaneous replication of the requested shoes. It didn't seem like it took a long time for him to get ready but merely putting his coat on was difficult with the wings there. It was with the sound of the doors into the main living area of the quarters that provided the extra incentive to complete his task. Slowly reaching down and zipping the zipper leaving the fabric open and flowing below the waist as he walked, Thomas move from the bedroom only to find not exactly who he had expected waiting on him.

“Oh, good there you are,” Sylvia smiled turning brushing back her hair behind her ears, “i’m not sure if you have met; but, Thomas this is Lieutenant Eve Dalziel and of course you remember Lt. Rochemonte.”

Thomas simply moved his gaze to Cindy before narrowing his eyes and returning back to Eve, “hello.”

Sylvia coughed slightly before stepping forward and smiling, “we have another favor to ask you.”

Thomas’ expression softened with her words and nodded, “I figured as much seeing as the last time you had three of the female crew talk to me with your named dropped I wound up doing something.”

His mind screamed and began swirling with moments before and after finding Solomon on Limbo. His eyes did, and always would betray him if only slightly as the colors mixed with hues of yellow and red. As the group explained their situation and what was explained to them would happen when the hours hit “night” Thomas just listened his mind still focused on thoughts of Limbo not allowing the thought of families suffering seem to phase him.

Shaking his head Thomas held up his hand to stop the chorus and continual round being produced by the three officers adding their own information to the story, “you do realize we have a science department, one that is not so understaffed, and from what I understand has Exobiologists, good Exbiologists, there.”

“Well Mr. Varn, we are aware of this but frankly you were the only one recommended when the questions was asked,” Eve stated looking at the man.

Thomas sighed, “look I understand that we have an issue here and being understaffed then more is going to be asked of us than what would normally be on a “normal” ship. I’m not unwilling to help; but, the mere fact that I have already had to run around that station one covered in blood and two without a coat for who knows how many people to speculate and get ideas leaves me a bit less willing.”

“Thomas,” Sylvia stated softly hoping that he would understood.

“You’ve got Petty Officer Monteleone, Crewmen Olver or Sarsfield that could help. Sure Sarsfield is a biologist and botanist mostly; but, she could help if needed; but, Olver is an Exobiologist and Exobotanist he’d be more equipped than the other two,” he stated rubbing his head slightly, “well I'm not going to say that Monteleone is a good Zoologist, better than his Ecology; but, he’s improved.”

“Mr. Varn, how do you know all this,” Eve stated calmly.

“Old habits Lieutenant, but, regardless i’m a Xenobiologist so if you happen to find something that you have no clue what is is and never been seen before I would be the one to call. Before you ask yes, I have had experience in biology and exobiology,” he replied turning from the group.

“Please Thomas, you are the only one that can be spared for this and it's not like you aren’t capable of protecting yourself,” Sylvia stated hold onto his arm.

Sighing and lowering his head in defeat once again he nodded, “when do I need to report.”

As the details were ironed out Cindy and Eve left the quarters heading towards the nearest turbolift only to slowly walk and talk with one another. Even wasn’t sure about asking the question; but, she had come this far, “Cindy, how did Thomas know all those names and positions in which they serve.”

Smiling slightly the young woman spoke softly, “old habits Eve, meaning it's a habit of his to learn those that would have served under him.”

Eve’s pace slowed to a halt, “you mean he’s Starfleet?”

Shaking her head slightly Cindy corrected her, “he was Starfleet. I haven’t heard the entire story but before we left Earth he was out until proven medically fit.”


NRPG: Thanks Susan and Alix

Susan Ledbetter
Lieutenant Eve Dalziel


Alix Fowler
Captain (Major) Kassandra Thytos,
A poor, set upon soul that sometimes acts as MCO (when she's not drinking)


Justin K. Owens
Lt. Cmdr. Thomas Varn


Previous Next