Captain's Log Stardate 74827.43:
December 31st, 2399. 0300 hours
In a few hours we will enter a new century and a new era. Since the discovery of the rift 25 years ago, we have been at the mercy of its fluctuations to send travelers back to their dimensions. At 0200 hours this morning, the G.D.S. Dreamcatcher came through the rift, representing The Grand Duchy of Pikeland. They are intentional travelers of the rift with technology that assists in controlling which dimension the "jump rifts" open up to.
They are currently just a few ships capable of travelling through the rift from a distant dimension, not too much unlike our own, as seems to be the case with many travelers. They are seeking others from their dimension that have gotten lost in the rift, so that they can bring them home. Their crew was visibly fatigued. Some were experiencing hallucinations which required medical attention. Our Chief Medical officer spoke in depth with their "Health and Safety" officer about the effects of travelling the rift. Apparently, it takes a physical and emotional toll on travelers that they are only allowed a set number of jumps per trip and so many trips per lifetime before they end up committed to a "jump asylum" or dead. This new information explains many previous encounters of travelers through the rift. An information exchange on "rift psychosis" will be happening over the next several days that they are here before continuing on their journey. We have granted their crew "Public Access" for Shore Leave, during this time.
Their Chief Science Officer has provided us with the temporal markers that will identify their people in our galaxy. It will take time to scan nearby planets, and further, for them, as the marker would be faint. By their calculations, we are looking for descendants of 100 plus generations. Nearly 10,000 Earth Standard years ago, based on their lifespans.
In exchange for being a safe haven for their fleet, they are sharing their technology with Space Station Requiem and the Confederation. This is going to be a game changer. Our Chief Engineer Matthew Frazier is already looking at a way to reverse engineer the technology so we can essentially block the more troublesome realms from coming through. SCPO Christopher Van Cleave is pouring over the data, in hopes that he can isolate the temporal frequency of when his father, Admiral James van Cleave, his brother, 1LT Alexander Kearney, and former CO Rebecca Harris, disappeared along with 20 other crew members seven years ago. We may have more questions than answers now, but we can start working towards solutions on why it helps to be a certain kind of crazy before coming to this space station. The 2 million souls sent to live here are counting on it to be able to return to the "normal society. "
Something about the rift is all that keeps us sane...
Ambassador/Fleet Captain Anna Tor
Captain's Log Stardate 74827.43:
December 31st, 2399. 0400 hours
It has been just two hours since the G.D.S. Dreamcatcher came through the rift. The medical data alone has been worth meeting them, though I am beginning to suspect that it wasn't by chance they arrived today. They have with them a Temporal Historian that has done more than 1000 rift jumps, with no apparent side effects. This Montolongue claims that his race was the ones who created the rift, due to a slight miscalculation on an Engineer's part. His appearance is reptilian humanoid, but his mannerisms leave a lot to be desired. Even our guests are unnerved by his presence on this trip.
Montolongue stood gazing out the Captain's Office window. "Time and time again, she falls. One day soon, she will kill us all." He mutters to himself.
"Pardon me, Montolongue. Is that from a poem?" Fleet Captain Tor asked.
He looked startled, and paled slightly, as if we had brought him back from some strange nightmare. "Oh, no, Anna... uh, Amba... um, Fleet Captain. It's from one of my history books. It's about you and it's about today." That wasn't the first time he acted as if we were on familiar terms. He looked down at the floor and a tear came to his eye. "I'm sorry, Captain. Today you will lose a lot of your friends and there is no stopping it."
Anna stood from her chaise, steeling herself up to her full regal height that left many shivering in fear. Her eyes turned cold steel blue as she addressed Montolongue, "Then perhaps today is a good day for me to be an Ambassador," she stated in icy tones. "There is one thing you don't do and that is threaten my family, or anyone else on this Space Station. You have two options: tell me what is going to happen today or die while still telling me what is going to happen today."
Montolongue paled even further as Anna stepped towards him, a dagger suddenly in her hand and to his throat. Swift and cat-like, just like the history books said she was. He swallowed nervously, as he saw from the corner of his eye the door open and two guards enter, with Lieutenant Hammock on their heels, their weapons drawn. "Oh dear, perhaps I shouldn't have said anything."
As the Security staff moved towards where their Captain was standing with a knife to Montolongue's throat, the Ready Room lit up in the familiar red crackling glow that indicated that something had just came through the rift.
"Oh dear," sighed Montolongue again. "I am afraid it is already beginning, Captain."
Fleet Captain Anna Tor sheathed her dagger in her duty belt. "Bring him." She commanded as she quickly strode in the Command Center of Space Station Requiem. "Report." Her suddenly sharp voice commanded. The crew looked at each other uneasy at the harshness of her tone.
"A ship has come through the rift, Captain." Specialist Lester stated. "It's the U.S.S. Masamune..." He paled as he looked at the view screen. "But, Captain, they were destroyed 25 years ago!"
"Ensign Arizmendi, what is their temporal signature? Is she ours?" Anna asked of her Science Officer on the bridge. Her tone was hushed. She, herself was unsure how she should feel if it did belong to her dimension. The Crew of the U.S.S. Masamune had fought valiantly that day during the Dominion War. Only minor debris was found after the initial incident and seven minutes of hell when the rift first opened so many years ago.
"Scanning now, Captain. Yes sir, the ship is ours, but most of the crew isn't
. She has United Federation of Planets markings and she's taken damage."
Specialist Lester interrupted, "Captain, we are being hailed."
"On view screen!"
"Audio only, Sir. They are still in the rift, Captain, and it's starting to close"
"This is the U.S.S. Masamune. We need help. Heavy damage, causalities, and injuries. Request immediate assistance."
"Lester, open frequency. Masamune, this is..." Anna paused briefly, torn as to whether or not she should identify herself and if it would have any meaning to the crew on that ship. "This is Space Station Requiem of the United Confederation of Planets. Are you able to maneuver out of your current position towards us?"
A relieved female voice replied, "Thank the great Bird of the Galaxy! We are home! Negative. All navigation is offline. Our Engineering room is non-responsive."
"Stand by for assistance." A quick turn of the head towards Admiral Wolberg. Both women nodded heads in understanding as the Admiral, and her crew, disappeared in a sparkling of lights. "The G.D.S. Dream Catcher is coming to get you. Have all hands hold on, it's about to get bumpy... again."
A brief moment later the GDS Dream Catcher began to maneuver towards the rift and the drifting starship. A tractor beam locked on. The Dream Catcher's audio of their crew working in practiced harmony, could be heard.
"Steady you don't lose that nacelle, Lieutenant."
"Aye Aye, Admiral."
"Harris, adjust the Temporal Flux to seven point three two eight nine mark six niner point zero one. Let's bring them fully into phase with us."
The light of a tractor beam that engulfed that Masamune began to resonate in different colors. For a brief moment, both ships disappeared and then reappeared next to the Space Station.
"Captain Tor, requesting permission to deposit the Masamune into docking bay seven for repairs." Admiral Wolberg's alto voice asked.
Sighing with relief, "Permission granted." With a quick glance at a display screen, Anna continued. "Docking Port 13 is available and will adequately hold her." A brief shimmer of light filled the view screen as the Masamune once again disappeared then reappeared on the view monitor, sitting pretty as a picture in the docking port.
"We've gotta get one of those." Lt. Hammock breathed in awe. Anna looked at him briefly, closed her eyes, and shook her head slightly in a disapproving manner. Having a crew with child-like awe and wonder at everything, was proving to be a challenge, especially with protocol.
"Lt Hammock, you're with me. Van Cleave, you have the command center." She straightened her uniform, glared at the sole remaining visitor from the Grand Duchy of Pikeland on her station. "Montolongue, walk with us."
Van Cleave looked at his mother's back as she left the bridge, once more, without him. "Yes, Sir." He muttered through clenched teeth and turned to see the rest of the Command Center Crew watching him. "Did she stutter?" He shot dirty looks at many. "We have work to do and a ship to repair. Get the Search and Rescue Crews moving along with repair teams."
Captain's Log Stardate 74827.43:
December 31st, 2399. Time: 0500 hours.
The last time I slept was more than 36 Earth Standard hours ago. I should have been able to get a “catnap” in the past four hours like I normally do. We should have been preparing for a new century to begin, with parties and celebrations. As I listened to Montolongue tell me about “all of the todays”, in the past tense, my heart was already grieving.
“And just how many times have you lived today, Montolongue?” Lt. Hammock asked in disbelief.
Montolongue’s slitted golden eyes looked out towards the heavily damaged U.S.S. Masamune. His inner and outer eyelids closed and opened slowly, in time with breathing gills on the side of his neck. The leathery reptilian skin was oscillating between blue, green, and hints of purples as Montolongue appeared to be lost deep in thought, his fingers absently ticking away at all three of them on one hand multiple times. He turned his head, cocked it slightly, “My friend, more times than I can calculate.”
Robert Hammock turned his focus to the Masamune outside the viewport. Repeating days in history. Temporal Timelock. His mind drifted back to the last time it had happened. The Space Station relived the day Admiral Van Cleave and Captain Harris were lost, along with his stepson and several other crew members for a year before a temporal explosion knocked them out of the loop.
He dared a glance at the almost legendary Ambassador and Fleet Captain,
Anna Leigh K’tee Tor. She was as tall as the lower deck tales made her out to be. Streaks of purest white were starting in her fire red hair. Her chameleon like eyes that would change colors with her mood was a fascination to many. She stood there in her crisp black Starfleet Uniform, adorned with a duty belt, and “ceremonial dagger” she was allowed to possess. She was so regal and stoic in her stance making it so easy to believe all of the stories about her. Her face was emotionless, not a sign to give him a clue what she was thinking, only her white knuckled grasp of crossed arms in front of her betrayed her current emotional state.
Ambassador and Fleet Captain Tor had been present that day 25 years ago when the rift opened. “Seven minutes of temporal chaos” was what the reports said. Every conceivable and inconceivable time, dimension, and reality existed in this one bubble in the furthest reaches of Alpha Quadrant, near her home planet of Elas and sister planet Troy, placing Space Station Requiem in their eminent domain. Some theorize the Dominion was the cause of the rift as they attempted to create their own worm holes between the two quadrants in attempts to flank the Confederation. The U.S.S. Joan of Arc, U.S.S. Battleborn, and U.S.S. Masamune were on patrol at the time when it happened.
Lt. Hammock clenched his jaw in remembrance of that day when the Starfleet Officers arrived to tell him his father had died on the U.S.S. Joan of Arc, during a battle with the Dominion and everything that had come through the rift that day. His mother had been aboard the U.S.S. Masamune when it disappeared, only bits and pieces remained. The officers had no information on her other than the U.S.S. Masamune was classified as “missing in action.” His grandmother, and only known remaining family member, passed shortly after from grief. “Missing in Action” was the most information he could ever get about the Masamune. No matter his rank, clearance, or the diplomatic connections he made as he advanced through Starfleet. He even joined Section 31 to be met with constant dead ends. He had hopes that joining the Temporal Marine Corps would shed some light on the whereabouts of his mother and the Masamune. Twenty-five years living the life of an orphan, and an unknown benefactor, was all he knew after that. The best schools and guaranteed admittance to Starfleet Academy was what they told him. “You’re special, Son. Don’t forget that. You have a purpose, and the Ambassador intends to see that you fulfill it.”
“Which ambassador?” He snarled to himself. A faceless, nameless entity that controlled him, and his destiny since he was 10. He struggled through his academy years and his first duty station, waiting for the promised transfer to Space Station Requiem where he had hopes of finding answers. The Ambassador would send him cryptic messages and correspondences. Every advantage he needed to succeed and keep his secret.
Eight years ago, his Marine Unit was finally transferred to Space Station Requiem and the area of space known as “The Rift” for their two-year tour of duty on the edge of the Draconis Nebula. Admiral James Van Cleave and Captain Rebecca Harris were in charge of this monstrosity back then, with Lieutenant Alexander Tor, the Admiral’s stepson in charge of the Search and Rescue Teams. All of them apparently unaffected, along with the Admiral’s son Christopher Van Cleave. Fleet Captain Anna Tor was on Elas, at that time, fulfilling her birth-right role as an Ambassador to her people and the Confederation of Planets. A brief moment of compassion towards his new commanding officer flashed across his mind. There was a woman with a colorful past and a destiny also not of her controlling.
When Hammock had arrived on Space Station Requiem, it had been seventeen years since the initial rift incident. Seventeen years of construction and there were still large areas incomplete as the population grew beyond anticipated numbers. A monstrosity of an organic looking space station, seemingly cobbled together, to house millions from different planets, galaxies, and dimensions. She suffered from frequent hull breeches and equipment failure as Engineers continued to try and decipher all of the data from that first day when the plans of the completed space station had mysteriously been uploaded into the U.S.S. Battleborn’s databanks. Plans that engineers apparently forgot to follow. The people working on the station breaking out in mass riots and fighting from “Rift Psychosis.” A smug snarl came to his face, unbeknownst to him, as he remembered when he realized the rift did not affect him. He was “a special kind of crazy” after all.
“Is there something amusing, Lieutenant?” Anna Tor’s sharp tones brought him back to the moment. Montolongue looked at him intently, appeared to smile and possibly wink at him. Hammock always struggled to read reptilian species.
“No, Sir. Just lost in a thought. My mother was serving aboard the U.S.S. Masamune when she disappeared.” Hammock’s blue eyes turned into pools of sadness.
For a moment, all of Anna’s features softened. “Yes, I know. I was here.” She looked down at the deck, absently toed the grey carpet with her shoe for a time. When she looked up, her eyes were pools of pristine blue water that mimicked his own. “I had to write the report as,” her words caught in her throat, “as one of the remaining senior officers and ambassador to this region. Your father was a fine officer on the U.S.S. Joan of Arc. My only regret is I didn’t get down to engineering that often to have gotten to know him better.”
Hammock paled. He had forgotten that for some unknown reason several of the crew members from the U.S.S. Joan of Arc were not on board when she blew up from the first blast of an unknown and hostile vessel that came through the rift that day. He also had forgotten that it meant his commanding officer was several years his senior. It was rumored that “The Great and Powerful Anna Tor” was already around 70 plus Earth years back then, but since most of her records were classified no one really knew except maybe her doctor. The vision of a woman standing in front of him could not possibly be that old, he thought to himself, slowly losing himself in her eyes. A random thought crossed into his head that he would gladly die in a glorious battle for her, just to see those eyes smile at least once, at him. Only him...
The sound of someone clearing their throat ended the mutual moment of silence. They both looked as Yeoman Gordon was standing nervously by, a PADD being held in his hooved hands and his Tellarite features harshly highlighted by the glow of the space dock.
“I, uh, have the medical data on the crew from the U.S.S. Masamune, Captain.” He managed to stammer out, before thrusting the PADD into Anna’s hand and abruptly departing.
Hammock gave a startled look at her. “Do people do that to you frequently?”
“What?” Anna asked in return, “Quiver in fear like I am about to devour them and send them on their way to their deity of choice?” The sarcasm was palpable in her statement. She regarded her Executive Officer for a moment before continuing, “You are the first person I have met in a long time that isn’t afraid of me. Why is that?”
Hammock looked out the window at the Masamune. Yes, why was that? He thought to himself.
Anna was intently looking at the PADD when her eyes went wide, she paled again, before her cheeks flushed with rosy color. “Mog!” She slapped her Comm Badge, “I want site-to-site transport to the sick bay of the Masamune NOW and alert Ambassador Kryss Th’dabie to be in my Ready room in 20 minutes!”
Captain's Log Stardate 74827.43:
December 31st, 2399. Time: 0600 hours.
Eight more ships have since come through the rift with varying degrees of damage. All report that the damage was sustained in the rift by an unknown vessel that had weapons that simply sliced through their defenses. I have heard of them before. The vessels they describe. The Doctor called them “The Silence”. Another group of lost “Rangers” that had drifted through called them “The Shadow.” I grew up knowing them as “The Ja’Desh.” Bringers of death and chaos.
Retired Admiral Kryss Th’Dabie paced the Ready Room. It was so unlike Anna to be this bossy, especially with an old friend. “I’m like the mother she never knew and grandmother to her children. What is her problem now? Ordering me like I am beneath her!” Kryss thought as her paling antennae twitched with nerves. She really wished that Anna had not requested her back on this place from Andor, even though her mind was more at ease here and calm had returned to her for the first time in years. Her gaze caught the glow of the rift as another battle-damaged ship emerged. She began to wring her hands together, digging her nails into her arm in attempts to calm down.
The sound of the door opening behind her caught her attention. There he was. Standing… unharmed. Her son…
Could it be? Mog? Her impossible child from a tryst on Ferenginar. His lobe was intact, his barely noticeable antennae danced nervously above them. His clothes looked to be the same as when she last saw him. He had aged too, though, so had she these past seven years.
Anna stood behind Mog, beaming with joy. The temporal signature matched. This was THEIR MOG! So many questions and so few answers. Slightly she pushed Mog into the Ready Room, “Go hug Moogie already, Brother.” She whispered to him. “You aren’t dreaming anymore. This is real. You are home.” It was hard to choke back her tears. She had to. Her tears always lead to trouble.
The Command Center was silent from behind her except for the everyday chatter. All silently were watching for the lift door to open for Senior Chief Petty Officer Christopher Van Cleave to come sulking through. He had earned every little bit of that rank in the past seven years since he had turned 18. This man-child deserved a moment of happiness too. His mother had been deliberately vague on her request for him to be called from one of the mess halls to the Ready Room.
The lift door opened to admit the gangly man child, who was hastily stuffing the remains of a doknade sandwich in his mouth. His blazing blues eyes took in the scene and came to rest on the backs of his mother and Mog. “UNCLE MOG!” In just a few short strides of his long legs, Christopher crossed the Command Center to hug his uncle by choice from behind.
“Oh my, oh.” Mog exclaimed. “What happened to the little child that was running around the space station getting into everything in engineering?” Kryss slowly sank to the floor of the Ready Room. Anna rushed over to her, followed by Mog, and Christopher.
Her aged blue hand reached up to touch Mog’s face and motherly caress his singular lobe. “Are you real? Am I dreaming?” She finally managed to ask.
A slender woman in a tattered Starfleet Uniform, coal black hair, emerald eyes,
and stark red lips emerged from the lift and strode into the Ready Room. Anna looked up and smiled. “Lieutenant Jan, how can we ever thank you and your crew for bringing him back to us?”
“We actually have Mog to thank. When we got pulled into whatever that thing is,” she waved her hand in the general direction of the rift, “we found his escape pod floating. Life support was barely functional. He had cocooned himself in a makeshift stasis chamber. It was pretty simple for us to revive him. His knowledge proved useful in navigating in the energized muck of that thing.” The last word was spit out, as if it was a curse. After a thoughtful moment, she replied, “Getting us back to our own dimension would be nice.”
The door to the Ready Room opened, once more. Lieutenant Rhonda Th’Dabie stood there, her initial facial expression was of anger then softened when she saw her husband. There was an inaudible “aww” from everyone as they embraced one another in the center of the room. Anna felt joy that she had not had in years. Mog quickly began to explain that when the Search and Rescue Team he had gone out on got sucked into the rift, their run-about took extensive damage. He was able to stabilize it for just a bit before the would-be habitants of the rift began to attack. As Captain Harris’ last act, she shoved him into an escape pod and hit the locking mechanism, shooting the only survivor of a crew of twenty-one, into the charged nothingness of the rift. He watched it explode, with the remaining twenty souls on board, before having to turn to his dire situation of being in an escape pod with only a week’s worth of life support, rations, and not a single planet in sight.
Christopher slowly sat down in a chair, looking as if he were about to throw up his recently inhaled meal. “My father and brother? They followed your run-about into the rift. Where are they?”
Mog looked at him blankly. “The Admiral? Poppy?” He suddenly looked around the room at the forlorn faces. “You mean, they’re not here?” His eyes darted about, hoping that what he was hearing was somehow wrong! It was now Mog’s turn to sit down as comprehension of some of the events that took place in his absence took over his mind. He began to pull with nervous vigor on the left side of his lobe, causing a recently repaired wound to openly bleed. “I didn’t see any other vessels enter the rift with us. I mean, other than the empty shell of a ship we were attempting to salvage for data and that was taken aboard the thing that attacked us.”
Christopher stood to his full height, taller than all present, straightened his uniform, cleared his throat, and his cold steel chameleon eyes locked with Anna’s. “Permission to be dismissed, sir.” He requested, in an eerily calm voice. Anna’s eyes softened once more as she looked upon her youngest child that had grown into a man during her extended absence before nodding her head in agreement, the cold realization that her oldest son and ex-husband were for all accounts dead, dampened the mood of everyone in the room.
Lieutenant Hammock and the rest of the Command Center staff watched silently as the stoic Senior Chief Petty Officer Christopher Van Cleave marched past them and into the turbo lift.
The child that grew up on the space station was going to seek solace where he could. Christopher’s mind raced as he ran down the corridor to a Jefferies Tube to hide, surrounded by things that made sense to him. He tried the techniques his mother had been showing him since her return less than a month ago to calm them down. He was still confused as to why it was so important for him to control his emotions. A remnant of childhood that was yet to be explained. Knowing his mother, it never would be explained.
For twelve years she had been gone. Left, in the middle of the night while he slept, without saying goodbye. “Urgent business on Elas” was all his father would tell him and then he would go angrily silent. It wasn’t the first time his parents had argued. When Alexander left for Starfleet Academy, wow, that was an argument that could have decimated an entire galaxy. Christopher shook his head in memory. His parents. They were something else.
His father was an only child of a Starfleet Admiral and his wife. It was his “honored duty to follow in the family tradition of serving Earth,” he had told Christopher multiple times when he was growing up. Twenty-five years ago, he had been born, in the midst of chaos. Chaos was apparently going to follow him his entire life. Routine patrol of the Draconis Nebula when his mother went into labor. The U.S.S. Joan of Arc met up with the U.S.S. Battleborn and the U.S.S. Masamune for this very reason. Mother refused to let the Emergency Medical Hologram Program deliver him. “A chance of too many complications,” they had told him. She wanted a REAL doctor to deliver her baby who was incredibly early for both Human and Elasian.
His parents and select senior staff were onboard the U.S.S. Battleborn when the Dominion War ships attacked from apparently nowhere. Alex was living on Elas with their paternal grandfather at the time. Somewhere his father said he should have been born versus in the reaches of space, but his mother was “stubborn as they get!”. Their patrol route was to take them by Elas in two months’ time, when Christopher was supposed to be due… had his mother been completely human.
“Ah yes, my mother.” Christopher thought with wry humor. She was supposedly half Human and half Elasian, a race that despite having been in contact with the Confederation of Planets since before the time of Captain Kirk and the U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701, and the Confederation still knew extraordinarily little about. Two entire planets, Elas and Troy, apparently worked very diligently to keep it that way, for nearly three hundred years, along with the secret of dilithium crystals and deuterium manufacturing as they consistently provided the highest quality once the two worlds had stopped warring with each other several hundred years ago.
This new information that his father and brother were possibly dead was hard to process. Christopher had been holding onto the hope they were still alive after six years, well, seven if you count in the year the Space Station was locked in a time loop. Uncle Mog had survived. Christopher could only pray now that somehow his father and brother also survived.
Captain's Log Stardate 74827.43:
December 31st, 2399. Time: 0700 hours.
They are gone. Admiral James Van Cleave and Lieutenant Alexander Tor, I have to accept that now. Starfleet is now changing them from “missing in action” to “killed in action” based on Mog’s report. There is no stopping a new day. I have to move on with my life, for myself and for Christopher.
Anna wiped tears from her eyes and looked blankly down at the Raktajino in front of her, oblivious to the continuous red crackling outside of her Ready Room window as more ships came pouring through the Rift. Ten ships belonging to the Grand Duchy of Pikeland were now present along with an additional 20 from other regions of time and space. Some they had categorized before and others were their first encounter. Each of them was heavily damaged from the Ja’Desh ship that lurked in the rift. Each new ship was dangerously listing, some near catastrophic failure, many decimated of crew, and now all docked in their seven bays. They were nearing over capacity and would soon have to start deciding which ships they can save and which ones they can only rescue crew off of.
Her mind refused to comprehend what Mog had told them about what happened that day seven years ago. The ex-husband? She could learn to live with. She would have to find a way, even if it meant blocking out every single happy memory. She would finish turning her heart cold to him and his refusal to understand the position her parents had put her in and how her future was always planned for her, and by extension, her children.
But, her son, her first born son, the m