Previous Next


Posted on Tue Jan 5th, 2021 @ 2:03am by Captain Cynthia Jackson & Lieutenant Arev

Mission: Mission 3.5 - Some R & R
Location: Science Lab
Timeline: 2261. 246 at 0900

It was another beautiful day and Cindy was as cheerful as ever. During this layover, she had been making it a point to meet with all of her Chiefs one on one. However, one person had somehow been escaping her: her Chief Science Officer, Arev. Well, he was a Vulcan, so it would be logical that he would be found in the science lab. And, since science was her former department, she was more than happy to visit it.

Walking into the science labs, her platinum blonde hair swung to and fro with each step her long legs took. The doors swung open before she even got to the doors, as if offering the Captain a professional courtesy. Looking around she called out, "Arev, are you here?"

Arev had been cleaning up the lab with his staff as Engineering had only recently gotten the repairs to their section finished. He put a container back on the shelf and came out of the storage area he had been working in.

"How may I help you Captain?" he asked.

"If you weren't Vulcan, I might make a cheeky innuendo just for the sake of having some fun." She beamed at the Vulcan and said, "I figured you might be here. Have you gotten out and about at all? You can't just spend all of your time in here. It isn't healthy."

"Captain", Arev replied. "If I were to get out and about while my section is in this condition, I would not be thinking of what I was doing, rather I would be thinking of the condition, so it would defeat the purpose of getting out and about."

Cindy became concerned. "Is it that bad? What problems are you having? I could help you fix it."

"I would not say it is 'that bad' ", A'rev replied. "but, it is not in the condition that I want it in. Your offer of help is appreciated, but I will pass. I am rather particular in how I like my section."

"I totally get that!" Cindy exclaimed. "When I was a Chief of Science, I wanted everything done the way that I wanted it done and everything where I wanted it located. I suppose that is one of the privileges and burdens of being a Chief."

"Indeed, burdens", A'rev said. "If you have a few moments, I must speak to you about a burden we have in common."

Cindy was intrigued by A'rev's change in demeanor and sense of urgency. "Whatever you need, A'rev. I am happy to help." She found a chair and sat down. "What's on your mind?"

A'rev took out a little white noise generator and set it on the counter. He wasn't sure how he himself might be being traced.

"You do realize that Admiral Wheeler does not have your best career interests at heart, do you not?", A'rev asked.

"Of course," Cindy replied simply. "But why should I let him steal my thunder or try to allow him to get under my skin. We all have admirals or people that try to keep us down." She looked at A'rev disappointedly. "Did you think that I was just a bubblehead?"

"Admiral Wheeler is doing more than trying to keep you down", A'rev replied with a slight sigh. "He is trying to ruin you and your career to the point that you are kicked out of Starfleet and perhaps even worse."

Cindy was curious. "Why? Why would he do that and how could you know anything like that?" Her eye color shifted from green to a darkening hazel.

"Why he would do that, I do not know", A'rev replied. "I know because I was ordered to find information on you that would bring around this downfall."

"I see," Cindy responded thoughtfully, her eye color shifting between a dark hazel and light brown. "Tell me, A'rev, why tell me this now? You've been on this ship for awhile...."

A'rev nodded, put his hands together steeple style, resting the tips on his chin, sighed slightly and said, "Please forgive my lack of brevity in getting to the answer, but I feel some history is needed for you to understand. My name is not A'rev, it is Saren. In approximately, 70 years I will be born on Romulus, where I will spend twenty-five years in the Romulan military and grow disillusioned with the politics and games played in said organization and resign. I spend the next twenty-seven years as an instructor at a Romulan Science Academy. In 2387, the Hobus star will explode destroying Romulus and for reasons that I am still trying to figure out, I found myself on the deck of the USS Landry two years ago. To give some perspective to the timeline, the individual known as Nero is from the same time."

He paused a moment before continuing, "Being Romulan, I spent much time interacting with Starfleet Intelligence shall we say. To gain my freedom, for lack of better words, I was given the mission of discrediting you. I have been surgically altered to appear as Vulcan. During our first mission together, when people's lives were in danger, I did not believe it was the appropriate time to try and fulfill my mission. As I said, politics and games do not appeal to me. The Admiral was not pleased when I reported that I had not taken the actions he wished and made certain threats against me. I am not sure what your knowledge of Romulans is, but we do not take threats kindly or lightly. At that point I decided that the option best for both of us was to play the game of politics, that my people have honed much further than humans can hope to, given your short life spans. I gave the Admiral the promise of a much greater prize at a later date, which he agreed would be more satisfactory. I then decided I would reveal the truth about myself and propose that we work together to work together and deny him that prize and furthermore bring his activities to light. That is why I am telling you this now."

Cindy looked at A'rev for a good long time before deciding. "This explains a few things. It explains why our doctor did not do the medical exam before you got on board. It explains why you have been aloof. It also explains how you were able to solve a science problem that none of us had the science for, and that is hard to say as a former Chief Science Officer."

She paced three steps to one side and then returned before facing A'rev. "Given this timeline's interactions with the Romulans, I don't see a way that we can tell the crew about this. I do not like playing politics but I do want to keep you alive and I want your genuine friendship, Saren. It is not fair that I should ask you to continue to play the game of being someone that you are not. Worse, I am now faced with second guessing decisions because your being in the past and having additional knowledge could change the future, which would potentially create a paradox. This is very troubling, Saren and we shall find a way through it, you and I. What are your thoughts?"

"Whether it is fair or not, this is the way the dice have rolled for now", Saren said. "These have been my choices, not yours. The chance of creating a paradox is slim as this time frame is mostly filled with Romulan propeganda, not facts from a Romulan perspective. Romulans withdraw and take little interest in the Federation in this time frame as there were greater issues to deal with. My knowledge of this time frame until my birth is largely filled with propaganda from a Romulan perspective."

He paused.

"What is important though is for you to know that, going forward, until the time we can get the Admiral arrested or until he figures out that I set him up, the Admiral is going to pretend to be a mentor to you", Saren continued. "Then at a time he thinks appropriate, he will try to frame you for something or put you in a bad situation. It could be tomorrow or it could by six months from now, I do not know that."

Cindy nodded and then shook her head. "But the moment that he tries to do so and I avoid it, you are no longer useful to him and your entire existence may be in danger." She bit her lower lip, considered the moment and said, "We must find a way to protect the two of us, Saren. You deserve a life of your own and not as a pawn. Perhaps one day you will want to have children and can do so. Though, I fear your prospects of finding another Romulan are minimal in Federation space."

That statement hit Cindy rather hard. "I cannot even imagine how hard this must be on you. I can't imagine never seeing my family or friends again. It would be worse knowing that most were not even born. I wish I knew what to do or say to make your pain lessen."

"Captain," Saren said. "I appreciate your sympathy, however you must remember, Romulans live as long as Vulcans. This is a blip in my lifetime. Trust me, I faced worse in the Empire. The Admiral's scope of vision is narrow. You can rest assured that I will be taking precautions to deal with the Admiral should he decide to try and dismiss me from service so to speak. In addition, now that you know my secret, it will be harder for him to cause issues for me for not only will he betray his actions, but the Federation as well. Is it the best of scenarios, no. It is however manageable."

"But you're not able to go back. So this blip is far from a blip," the Captain insisted. She sighed heavily, her eye color wavering between greenish and brownish hazels. "Can you at least now start calling me Cindy?"

"The elements have a different plan in store for me it seems", Saren replied. "Plus, I will be born again, so who knows what will happen then. As far as calling you Cindy, perhaps, when off duty. There are certain habits that one learns in the Romulan military and one always addresses a higher ranking officer by their rank. In addition, for Romulans names have a form of power and inference."

Cindy gave Saren an understanding nod. "Yes, but your life here is hidden. It will be more than a little interesting to see where it goes since it is unlikely you have a return trip to the future."

"My return trip is called time, Cap.., err Cindy", Saren says. "I will have at least another one-hundred and twenty five years to enjoy once we get back to the time of my birth. Perhaps it will not lead me to the same future that was before me when the Hobus star went nova, but I can tell you with all honesty, that is not a bad thing."

"You will have to tell me more of what your life was before you ended up here. Of course, you can't tell me anything that might influence the future, but I am curious to know about your past in the future."

"It was rather routine, from a Romulan point of view", he said. "My father was a scientist and my mother an engineer. I took interest in both. As all Romulans are required to do, I entered the military academy when I was thirty. Then I spent ten years as an engineer and another ten as a scientist and decided the Romulan military was not for me. I then spent nearly thirty years as an instructor at the Romulan Science Academy."

"And is that how you knew how to handle the situation at Vulcan?" Cindy asked curiously.

"That and I had read papers on a matter mixture that was later used to try and prevent the Hobus star from exploding", he answered. "Obviously, that was not successful. I will have to forward my notes to a fellow scientist for his review."

"Not in this time period, Saren," Cindy replied sadly. "Events have to unfold the way they have. Or, you have no past in the future."

"Not everyone I know in this time are ignorant of what happened around Hobus and Vulcan from a first hand perspective", Saren said. "I would not be violating any rules of the Federation."

"I hope that it will stay that way, Saren. I like you. In this time, the Romulans are still our enemies. I really don't want to ever have to think of you as one. And perhaps it is foolish of me to trust you. After all, you're more skilled in political games than I will ever be. But I do trust you. I hope that you trust me too and that neither of us will betray the other's trust." She gave the Romulan a hopeful and pleading smile.

"Trust takes time to gain", Saren said. "However, I am willing to try and I can honestly say that the Romulan government is as equally my enemy as much as it is yours, so I gain nothing in betraying you."

"I appreciate that, Saren. I know that this must be difficult for you on all fronts. However, I will have your back."

"Difficult situations are what make us grow Captain. I believe that your Charles Darwin said, 'It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.' I am adapting Cindy."

Pleased that Saren called Cindy by her proper name, the Captain smiled broadly. "Well, if you need any help, you have me. Alright?"

"Certainly", Saren replied with a nod.


Previous Next