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Contemplation of time and starships

Posted on Sun May 30th, 2021 @ 3:27am by Captain Rhenora Kaylen

Mission: Trapped in Time
Location: Captain's Quarters

Captain Kaylen Rhenora flopped onto the long couch underneath the window. The crisis of the stranded Bajoran vessel in the wormhole behind them she could finally relax for a few moments as the Liberty cruised the short distance back to DS9 and docked alongside the USS Sunfire. The glass of synthahol sat forgotten on the small table in front of her, her eyes clouded and memories overriding her conscious mind.

The last Sunfire had been a defiant class, the nuggety little ship was ridiculously overpowered and armed to the teeth but had served the small crew well. She was tenacious in battle and could easily hold her own. The lack of crew quarters and space compensated by the armaments and shielding. It was cosy, but it was also home. She could clearly see the bridge, it’s compact but efficient design a reflection of the ship itself. A center chair surrounded by the senior officer bridge stations. A single helm in front of the viewscreen and a holo com station at the rear. She could even smell the light burnt tinge that always seemed to be present, a legacy of some of the scrapes they had been through. Her old crew, Jenna, George, Selune, Irksnot, the Syeds, Laria and Remal, even S’Thesnosis - the JAG officer commonly referred to as ‘dragon lady’ due to her appearance and her utmost adherence to the rules. They had some tough times but some good times, they were a tight knit family who stood by each other through thick and thin.

Her heart ached a little as the thought of her previous family, now mostly spread in different corners of the galaxy. She had a new family now, and a biological one on the way yet her mind was drawn this late evening to times past. She'd spoken with the new Captain of the Sunfire, a wing commander by the name of Ghost Sharon. They'd agreed to meet up when the Liberty arrived back at DS9 and Sharon offered a tour of the smaller Akira class vessel. Rhenora had offered the same of the Liberty. A part of her, a large part of she was truthful with herself, still lay with the Sunfire, the ships that she had called home for over a decade. Years behind a desk for a multitude of reasons hadn't tempered her desire to be in the stars, and she never truly understood why she'd been offered the Liberty over the Sunfire. The timing was such that if she hesitated and waited for her old ship to come up she may have spent many more months if not years behind the desk back at Command.

Yet here she was, curled up with legs tucked underneath her, boots kicked off and head in the stars. It was her favourite place to be, apart from their home back on Bajor, now being rebuilt hopefully in time for their next visit. Her stomach twisted at the thought of someone trying willfully to hurt them. To be honest it wasn't the first time and would undoubtedly be the last. High ranking positions in any culture tended to draw those kind of situations.

A round of sneezes assaulted her nose, leaving her breathless and reminding her of her present situation. Remaining in space for the next few months was fine, but what of when the child was born? Could she continue her role as Captain and be a mother at the same time? Such things were uncommon but not unheard of. Precedents had been set before her proving that it could be done. But is that what she wanted? To risk the life of her husband and child every day just so she could be in her happy place on the bridge of a Starship? Questions gnawed at her mind, relentless like a hungry dog and a bone. Was it fair to ask Remal to be the primary provider for the child? Was it her place to even consider it? How was a balance of work and family life achieved when the long hours of Captaincy demanded so much of her time and energy?

She sighed, wondering just what a mess she'd gotten everyone into this time. Remal was ecstatic that they had conceived, Savar was very supportive and Aurora had been a solid female support during her brief journey to date. Sarah had said there were no complications other than some additional supplements to keep her body doing what it needed to. Could they pull this off, this village that was the crew of the Liberty? It was her choice to conceive, yet they would bear the burden.

Her thoughts turned to the little Bajoran freighter that they had rescued, its crew now resting comfortably as the Liberty returned back to DS9 and Bajor where they would be repatriated. There would be a difficulty for them understanding the years that had passed and for Naprem there was a younger version of herself to contend with. Temporal prime directive be damned, Command would have a field day when they found out. She was sure that responding to a ship in the apparent state of distress would help in this situation, whether the universe as they knew it would implode as there were now two Naprem’s who knew. She’d cross that bridge when she came to it. She felt comfortable in that she’d rescued 8 people from being trapped in a time bubble the Prophets had encased them in to prevent them dying. The creature had been there to protect them and had also been dealt with upon realising that it was indeed a Prophet. Remal’s visions had been accurate and despite the limited information they always seemed to carry - his description of previous events had helped Rhenora make decisions that worked out favourably for everyone. Without them a base understanding of what had transpired previously would not have been possible. Perhaps the Prophets were easing her burdon and shifting some of the load onto him?

Then there was the little pearl that Prophet had let slip on the bridge. Thankfully no-one had commented on it although she was sure the Liberty’s rumour mill was now running full steam with extra warp power in that regard. The private life of the ship's Captain always seemed to be a hot topic of discussion between junior officers. She would have to curtail that once everyone had a few moments to breathe.

The thought of the crew stirred a wave of apprehension. The Sunfire was docked at DS9 and was on instruction to remain there until the Liberty joined her. Was Command planning some kind of joint mission or was their instruction something more personal? Savar had mentioned that perhaps she was about to be reassigned but the thought of leaving her crew that were working so well together caused a glimmer of anxiety. She was determined to keep the family together, even if it meant forsaking command of the ship of her past. Hopefully whatever the Admiralty had planned work for everyone.


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