Humanity's big step
First they had boats, then they had airplanes, achieved warp, accomplished beaming, and then made starships. One should admire the evolutionary chain that was taken decades and decades by humanity. They went through hell. They went through the plague, natural disasters, and spread out through the galaxy. They went out into space. First there was the adventures of Archer then James T Kirk, Rachel Garrett, Hikaru Sulu, Jean-Luc Picard,Kathryn Janeway, and other brilliant captains. Picard met up with the most interesting race claiming to be god. Frankly they did.
"Do you feel it, Captain?" Sonny Degrias, CMO of the USS Enterprise Z, asked his captain at the table.
"Feel what?" Captain Barnabas asked.
"The change." Sonny said, with his serious tone.
Captain Barnabas rolled an eye.
"You know as well as I just because Captain Kirk was told we would be evolving to another level of evolution and we meet up with higher beings in a thousand years doesn't mean we will, Sonny," Barnabas said. "It is not a spiritual awakening of the kind." He took a sip of orange juice, his grip tightly around the cup, then lowered it down to the table. "I have heard false promises."
"But this one is not false, Captain," Sonny said. "I can feel my being waiting to float out and soar out through the metal, out into space, out through the various planes. . . and meet the ones who have been watching us for all these years."
"Humanity is not ready to meet the ones who have been considered our gods," Barnabas said. "We have been known to kill them perhaps we will cause a war this time!"
"Commander B-4 to Barnabas."
"You are needed at the bridge."
Barnabas raised a eyebrow.
Ever since they had gotten into the Andromeda Galaxy for a annual meeting of captains,there hadn't been much activity from the Romulons (Klingons/Romulan) race. They had a penchant to be referred to as space pirates. They had qualities of both races apparent on their faces and some of their Klingon traits were receding leaving the Romulan half open to the general public. They had gone three months without activity from them. They had gotten word of a 'change' occurring in their galaxy. Lately? No word has been coming from the Federation. Barnabas stood up from his chair pardoning himself then he left the cafeteria.
B-4 is all that remains of a beautiful era.
Data, long ago, had passed.
B-4 had his own independent matrix.
Barnabas came aboard the bridge fifteen minutes later.
"What is it, Number One?" Barnabas asked.
B-4 stood away from his chair gesturing over to the captain's chair.
"Why hello, Scrooge." Came a man in the captain's chair with one leg over another and his fingers tapping on the arm rest.
Barnabas came to a stop seeing a man who was apparently in a old Star Fleet uniform that was discarded centuries ago. It was a command red straight out of 2371. Barnabas knew because he did a lot of research about this era in case they were ever thrown into the past (Which happened, a lot, really). Barnabas had no idea who this man was. He looked over to B-4 earning a 'I don't know this man' kind of look. Barnabas turned his head directly toward the man who seemed to make himself right at home.
"My name is Captain Barnabas." Barnabas said.
"Like Barnabas Collins, how. . ." The man paused looking up toward Captain Barnabas. "It really doesn't suit you."
"Why are you on my bridge?" Barnabas asked.
The man smirked.
"Wrong question." The man said.
Barnabas narrowed his eyes toward the odd man.
"What. are. you?" Barnabas said.
"You'll find out soon enough." The man said.
"Who are you?" Barnabas asked.
"Q." Q said.
It then clicked in Barnabas's mind.
The danger, the gravity of this situation, and the history sitting RIGHT IN HIS GODDAMN CHAIR.
"You have been gone for centuries," Barnabas said. "What makes you come here so suddenly?"
Q stood up, theatrically, from the chair.
"Because I am here to tell you and everyone else aboard this Enterprise that you are the last solid representatives of humanity in outer space," Q said. "Apparently humanity is not going up until EVERYONE is there!" He eyed at the young thirty-five year old captain who had light brown hair and prosthetic eyes. "I had a little break from pestering the Federation, well. . . Really raising my spawn."
Barnabas's hands curled up into heated fists.
"GET. OFF. MY. BRIDGE!" Barnabas shouted at Q.
Q, apparently, was caught off guard by the single four worded demand.
"That is no way to treat your messenger!" Q said, in fury.
"I don't care," Barnabas said. "And you are just one of many delusional people believing we are headed straight up to godly." Barnabas pointed at Q with his index finger. "Well guess what?" Barnabas lowered his hand down to his side. "It has been ONE THOUSAND YEARS and nothing has ever happened!"
Q stepped forward.
"Is that what you are saying?" Q asked, infuriated.
"Yes," Barnabas said. "And there is nothing that will change my mind."
Q snapped his fingers.
"Captain, we seem to be having problems!" Came a shout from the security station.
All attention went straight on Q.
"What did you do?" Barnabas asked, in rage.
Q at first had his smug smile.
Then it turned into 'Why you brat,you take everything more seriously than someone I knew a thousand years ago!' kind of look.
"Today you will find the truth as life support fails," Q said. "Just you see. . ." Q's face grew grim as he held his right hand up preparing to snap his fingers dramatically. "It will happen."
With a snap of his fingers, Q vanished in a white flash.
. . . Briefing room. . .
. . . 12:39 PM. . .
"It is apparent that he has messed our life support systems up," Barnabas said. "And there is no way to repair them."
"Captain,the records show that activity in the Alpha Quadrant has ceased from humanity," B-4 said. "Including the other inter-mixed races that emerged over the past thousand years."
"I told you it is happening, James." Sonny said.
"If humanity is evolving. . . As what this Q has said . . ." Barnabas said. "That means only one thing."
"What is it sir?" Lieutenant Commander Jacob Strong asked.
"We are all leaving B-4 behind." Barnabas said in a low voice.
Their eyes went to B-4.
"I will be taking a shuttle to Andromeda if this ship were to be abandoned." B-4 said.
"You being alone?" Chief Engineer Rebeca Stern said. "I for one wouldn't want that for you."
"So would I," Barnabas said. "This is our last voyage in space with you, my friend, then there is no way in hell we'll be leaving you ten mega-light days away from Selios Three."
"Captain. . ." B-4 said. "You don't have to do that."
"We do, Mr B-4." Barnabas said, with a nod.
"I can figure a way to speed the engines up to take us there in a day," Stern said. "It will create stress in the befuo conestial factor and the ex-deuo cahuzian."
"But can we do it without exploding ourselves?" Barnabas asked.
"I am certain of it." Stern said.
"Let's do it," Barnabas said, standing up. "Dismissed."
Everyone except for B-4 and Barnabas were left in the room.
"Captain. . ." B-4 said. "I feel. . . gratitude. . . for your attempts at not making me be alone."
"You need to be with people," Barnabas said. "You are the only one who'll survive the suffocation."
"Captain, I was-"
"You don't breath like we do," Barnabas cut B-4 off. "You do not have a heart or lungs. You operate because of a fixed system," He grabbed the android by the shoulders. "Tell me. . . With all of Data's memories. . . If it were happening to the Enterprise E rather than the Enterprise Z, would Captain Picard make the same call?"
"I . . . I am not sure." B-4 said.
"Well, I am the one making that call," Barnabas said. "Do you feel you have a soul?"
"I do." B-4 said.
"It's not fair. Androids don't evolve. We do. You have a soul. . . But you. . . I believe that is the beauty of being an Soong Type Android. You'll make new friends, quickly," Barnabas pat the android's shoulder with a small but sad smile. "I know you will."
Barnbas left the room leaving B-4 alone.
B-4 slumped down and cried into his hands.
Everyone was leaving B-4.
His friends and his pals.
. . Captain's quarters. . .
. . 2:20 PM. . .3000. . .
Barnabas had his back to the wall.
It was taking his sheer will to keep himself down on his feet. His hands were rolled up into fists containing all that bubbling and circulating energy. He was in a dark blue and red jumpsuit with the combadge on his chest. He was trembling struggling to keep himself together. Barnabas felt like he could float on off through the ship's metal hide. He closed his eyes seeing the images of planets clouding his mind. He opened his eyes holding his hands out to his view seeing them glowing a bright white.
I can't leave, Barnabas thought.
Barnabas struggled to stand upright.
He had to control this desire to move on up.
To become light and free of his current anchor.
His entire body was an anchor.
I must stay for the crew, Barnabas thought closing his eyes, for B-4. We can't leave him. . . not like this.
He knew how leaving B-4 in this current state would leave the android.
Captain Barnabas could feel the change.
"I. . . Must. . . stay!" Barnabas pushed himself forward opening his eyes.
No longer did they need holoprograms when they could go back in time and do the socializing at the minor points in time asking some of the important people in time for advice then erase that moment by flipping a 'undo switch' that makes the moment appear as though it never existed in time, space, or to those they spoke with. It became a handy tool. They had to be careful with their travels. When they accidentally time traveled and had no way back to their time, they had to accept they were making a parallel timeline. They used the help of the crew to get back home. But holoprograms were still used by those who preferred in no interference at all. They still had the holodeck for that reason. Some of his crew were holoprograms who achieved sentience.
These holoprograms understood the problem they had.
And that they were willing to be sent off through mobile emitters for different occupations in the Andromeda galaxy.
The chief of security was a holoprogram.
Barnabas used the wall as his guide to get out of his quarters.
He was loose and embattled in a war against himself to stay on the plane of soldility.
"Captain, I have detected-" The Romulan security program came to a stop. He was known as Chief Security to all. "Do you need any assistance?"
". . .Medical Bay." Barnabas fell into the arms of Romulan Security program.
"Captain, you are running a fever!" Chief Security said.
"Take me . . . there." Barnabas said.
Chief Security helped the captain up.
"I will try, Captain Barnabas."
. . . Medical Bay . . 3000. .
. . .2:40 PM. . .
"Captain, lay still," Sonny said. "Your struggling is only making it worse!"
"I am not going to leave without a fight." Barnabas said.
"So it gave you a fever because you refuse to leave?" Sonny asked, in shock as he briefly glowed a pure white.
"I refuse to abandon my great friend." Barnabas said.
Barnabas was half Romulan and Half Cardasssian.
He had those scales along his neck, the face of a Cardassian, the ears of a Romulan and the forehead of a Romulan. He all, by all accounts, had the anatomy of a human being. He was gifted with the height of 6'7. He was a interesting mix. His great grandparents were human so he was quarter human that happened to still affect him. Most of his crew members had human ancestry except for the ones who were built or were programs.
Sonny put one hand on Barnabas's shoulder.
"I know what you are thinking," Sonny said. "You can't just go back in time and discuss this with Picard."
"I . . ." Barnabas said. "I want this . . to be . . in. . " Barnabas closed his eyes balling his fists up concealing the energy. "Here."
"But captain, you are in no position!" Sonny said.
"How. . . how are you so healthy?" Barnabas asked.
"I am not fighting to stay like you. I am letting it take the natural course."
Barnabas closed his eyes visibly having trouble controlling the pain.
"No. . ." Barnabas said. "I refuse. . ." He cleared his throat. "My Romulan half has evolved so long . . . I feel like if I stop fighting then I will leave everyone. I feel like doing that will be deserting B-4!"
Barnabas felt relaxed and at ease, but mostly relieved, for telling the truth.
"Captain?" Sonny said, concerned while taking his hand off Barnabas's shoulder. "Captain!"
Barnabas was glowing a perfect white color.
"I. . . won't LEAVE!" Barnabas shouted, becoming solid once more.
"All right Captain," Sonny said, as he faintly glowed. "I will arrange it."
. . . 3000. . .
. . . Enterprise Z. . .
Everyone was leaving B-4.
The civilian family, who bore a strong connection to Spock, moved on before his eyes taking on the form of white flying balls.
It made B-4 feel sad.
B-4 cried in private.
He had his brothers memories.
B-4 felt sad when Geordi died, then Riker, then Troi, then Worf, then Wesley, then Picard, and so on. B-4 carried the grief around him where-ever he went. He would never see the civilian family as solid organisms who had needs to be met with. He wouldn't see them, period, again. When Picard had died; B-4 felt so angry at the word and upset. Why couldn't he die? Why did he have the memories of his brother? Honestly he believed these memories were a curse. A living curse that his brother had left him in a attempt to help. Data only made B-4's life harder and tougher.
B-4 became operational shortly after Geordi figured a way to make him stabilized and intelligent with a organized mind.
B-4, under no doubt, earned some of Data's quirks due to the memory exchange.
B-4 could feel that his brother was there, watching, nearby, watching over him.
He was aware that he had two brothers.
He believed that Data and Lore felt like they had some duty to make sure he got out okay.
Being alone was terrible. Isolated, scared, and afraid to step out of the darkness. The thought of starting over again terrified the android. He wiped off the tears from his golden tinted face using his sleeve. Sure did he have the dedication to explore the galaxy, meet new civilizations, and help those who need it without going over the rules of the prime directive. It was fun really. Fun as being aboard the Enterprise Z. The tears came pouring out of his eyes once more at the thought of the Enterprise Z. For sure B-4 was mad at the evolution chain. Who wouldn't? He thought he would be crushed to see them die. One by one those around him was moving on to a different level.
The civilian's farewells?
"We'll see you one day!"
B-4 wanted to delete Data's memories.
They were giving him a heartache.
. . . . 2370. . . .
. . . USS Enterprise D. . . . Captain's ready room. . .
Captain Picard was reading a book in his ready room on the couch. It was one of his favorite hobbies asides to horseback riding on the holodeck. Picard felt like he needed to have some time alone with a book. He already had been in the usual Sunday poker game. The book was thrilling with a adventure fit for his taste. It was then Picard had a strange feeling someone was joining him in the room. Picard looked up briefly from the book to see a materializing figure appearing in a white haze.
Picard put his book to the side on the counter then stood up as the figure became solid.
"Q, out of my ready room!" Picard demanded.
Only to be surprised by what seemed to be a young man using the counter of the desk to stand upright. He was in a jumpsuit that was totally different from the new style that was coming in. Picard was stunned, to say for the least, to see what appeared to be a mix of Romulan and Cardassian standing before him. It wasn't heard of that these two races got together peacefully (And even if they did, it would be for a war of some massive proportions) in one room.
"Hello." Barnabas said.
"Are you a Q?" Picard asked.
Barnabas was trembling before the bald captain who had little white hair behind his ears.
"I am. . .Not, but what I am is. . ." Barnabas cleared his throat. "Evolving, and so is everyone else in my time," Barnabas said. "I have met your Q very recently." He held out his hand toward Picard. "It is. . .a true honor to meet you, Captain Picard."
Picard was flattered at first as he shook the man's hand.
"What is your name?" Picard asked.
"Captain James D Barnabas," Barnabas said. "I want your advice . . ." Their handshake stopped and they both let go. His left hand went to his side. "If you were fighting against evolution to ensure a friend wasn't alone until the reached civilization. . . . Would you. . ." He leaned to his side balling up the incredibly forceful strong energy circulating through. "At the time it feels like you must leave." He looked up toward Picard. "Would you leave?"
"Good question," Picard said. "But I wouldn't say unless I have been put into that position."
Barnabas had a short laugh for two minutes then he had a sigh at the end of it.
"I have Data's brother aboard my ship. . . And it is sad he can't evolve with us." Barnabas said.
"Lore?" Picard said. "He cannot be trusted. I have known this android to be not trust worthy."
". . .Lore?" Barnabas said, apparently unfamiliar to the name.
"I was unaware Lieutenant Commander Data had two brothers."
Picard's face went pale.
"There is another one out there?"
"Yes. . ." Barnabas said. "His struggle to achieve sentience was . . . painful at best." He had a sigh. "I have files regarding his Star Fleet career aboard my ship. These events have yet to occur as you have not met him." He looked over toward the direction of the fish in the fish tank then back to Picard. "Once a major event happens for your Number One then you will meet Data's other brother. The sequence of events start there."
"Merde." Picard said.
"Trust me, he is not all that bad . . . Well. . ." Barnabas said. "Telling would be spoiling."
Barnabas glows a bright white color.
Beep. Beep. Beep.
"Enter," Picard said. "Mr Barnabas,what can you tell me?"
"I am from the last Starship with the name Enterprise-Z," Barnabas said. "Year? 3000."
"One thousand years from the future . . ." Picard said, in shock.
In walked Riker.
"Captain, there's seem to have been detection of enormous power-" Riker stopped, well really froze in spot, at the sight of Barnabas. He had panic on his face.
"Also. . .When did you see Q last?" Barnabas asked.
"A month ago." Picard said.
"And he was never seen again by anyone in the Alpha Quadrant but seen plenty of times on the Voyager," Barnabas said. "Raising his own. . .I suppose. .That can take a long time and a lot of his attention." There was a glint in Barnabas's eyes. "Hello, I. . .Have . . . been avoiding this but . . . I am your very great grandson, Mr Riker."
Riker looked over to Picard.
"At ease, Number One," Picard said. "What is his brother like? The one you are acquainted with."
"He is a lot like Data," Barnabas said. "So much like him."
"Do I ever see Q again?" Picard asked.
"You in general?" Barnabas asked.
"Yes." Picard said.
"You never see him again, Captain." Barnabas said.
Picard had a sigh of relief.
"Did I hear right? No more Q?" Riker asked.
"Good riddance." Picard said.
"That is . . . going to be weird. I have gone to expect him every-year." Riker admitted.
Barnabas looked down to a item wrapped around his wrist then looked back to Picard.
"Time to go." Barnabas said.
"If I were you, Barnabas, I would not stop fighting until the ship is docked." Picard said.
"Thank you." Barnabas said.
In a blue light Barnabas vanished.
. . . 5:20 PM. . . 3000. . .
. . . Enterprise-Z. . .Holoprogram Cafeteria. . .
Chief Security watched one by one of the civilians turn into orbs. One by one he sadly watched them go. One by one his human comrades were being plucked. He and his fellow holoprograms who mourned the loss of their human friends. They had been given the program of emotion, capable of drawing tears, showing anger, happiness, frustration, and irritation. Raw emotion.
He would miss their quirks.
He would miss their temper.
He would miss their mistakes, their slip ups, and arrogance.
He would miss serving alongside them.
He would miss the unruly teenagers and best of all the captain.
It has been a true adventure serving alongside Captain Barnabas.
"They are leaving us!" Cried a nurse holoprogram in the arms of a engineer holoprogram named Franky. Her name was Mary.
"But the personnel isn't," Chief Security said. "They are still here."
"There is only a few hours left of the day," Mary said. She was trembling in the arms of Franky. "Serving aboard this ship. . .It has helped me achieve sentience."
Chief Security served with Barnabas since the Enterprise-Z first left Vulcan.
He could tell a new android countless stories about serving with humans and mixed races.
B-4 wasn't the only Android out there. There were two hundred of them out in open space mainly in the Andromeda galaxy. They served a little more purpose. There used to be thousands until there was a revolt against the Federation for treating them like miners and slaves four hundred ninety years ago. There was a civil war with starships against starships. B-4 was shut down temporarily until the war had ended due to the Federation having jumpy feet of having a android that could possibly betray them in a war. The war had not ended until two hundred twenty-three years ago.
"My first memory. . ." Chief Security said. "Mine was of being a Ensign. I had been activated by B-4 when they hadn't been on the move. The then current officer was a Romulon by the name Charz. He died two years later . . Anyway. . ."
"A Holoprogram. . " Barnabas said. "I am a little skeptical about a holoprogram taking on the function of security."
"We have no choice with Michael on our heels," B-4 said. "Hello," He faced toward Ensign Security. "I am Commander B-4," He then gestures over to the Romulan. "He is Chief Security Charz," B-4 points to Barnabas. "This is Captain James Dean Barnabas and you are Security Program 2.97."
A disruptor struck the nearby wall above three. The group were forced back on the run on their two feet lacking their combadges. Barnabas was on the run with Commander B-4, Charz, and Ensign Security from a rival Romulon shooting their distruptors at them. Since Ensign Security at the time was simply a program he was left without the sensation of sweating, heart pumping, and adrenaline flowing through. But what Ensign Security did have was pure horror going through his system matrix. The distruptor blasts blazed past Commander Data's shoulder.
"RUN!" Barnabas shouted.
"I am running,sir!" Ensign Security shouted.
Ensign Security picked up a short but small long wide rock that resembled more of a spear.
"I WISH WE HAD OUR PHASERS, CAPTAIN!"
"THIS PLANET TURNS OUR PHASERS TO ASHES, MR CHARZ!"
A blast struck into B-4's knee and so was the other making the android collapse to his knees on the floor.
"Oh dear." B-4 said.
Ensign Security stopped in his tracks then ran to the aid of B-4 with his blade aimed backwards in his hand.
The holoprograms dapped at their eyes using a programmed handkerchief.
"Daaaww." Came a collective sigh.
Their humans who couldn't survive in their environment were going up the next stage in evolution.
"I'll miss Doctor Sonny." Franky said, as Mary broke out of his arms.
"Me too." Came another holoprogram.
"He is a great doctor," A Medical Emergency Holoprogram II said, wiping off a tear from the corner of his eye. "There won't be another like him."
"Remember the time when the captain ordered us to put a lot of sub-routines into our routine commands for when there were a invasion of space pirates?" Mary asked.
Their eyes shined, as they all nodded.
"That nearly destabilized us." One holoprogram said.
"And it worked," Mary said. "We can make our arrangements work."
"The best I will miss about this ship. . .is the people," Franky said. "I remember being very clueless how to be social in the beginning. It was . . . Stern's insistence that I branch out to others and develop hobbies."
"Excuse me." Chief Security said.
Chief Security exited the room then trailed his fingers along the wall lowering his head. It was all a heavy blow for him. Losing what friends he had aboard the Enterprise-Z. All his sub-routines, his usual routines, and personality matrix could change when the crew vanishes. He could fall into the hands of smuggler or thieves. The only history of humanity that would remain to testify for their behalf would be computers,sentient holoprograms,and androids. His legs felt heavy. He came into the turbo lift.
"Deck 38." Chief Security said.
The turbo lift, these days, can read the holoprogram mood and play a song depending on it.
"Please stand by, and listen to 'Live Forever' by Drew Holcomb." The computer said.
His eyes briefly closed.
"Computer, override song choice and replace it with 'Iridescent' by Linkin Park on high volume." Chief Security said.
"Choice has been changed to Iridescent," The computer replied. "Now playing."
As the doors close we see Chief Security kneel down with one hand over his eyes and tears emerge. He had one hand against the rail. He was visibly upset. The doors closed in on the Romulan Holoprogram where we hear nothing. The elevator goes up and up. The turbo lift came to a stop but the doors did not open. That lasted for three minutes. The turbo lift resumed going up until it came to Deck 38. The doors opened to reveal a teary eyed Chief Security.
Chief Security went down the hall until he came to a holodeck with a golden door that had the four markings that were in the shapes of pips.
"Activate: Worf Son of Mogh holoprogram," Chief Security said. "Era? Deep. Space. Nine."
"Holoprogram complete." The computer said.
The doors opened and in came Chief Security.
He stepped into the room that had Klingon related furniture, human related too, a picture of a battle that had been drawn long ago. Long before his time. He saw Worf, the aging Klingon he was, sitting down having champagne. Now he wasn't well known to drink champagne when in private but there was little information about Worf's hobbies asides to using sticks to create a little house. Holoprogram Worf looked up toward the Romulan.
"Who are you and how did you get into my quarters?"
"I am Chief Security Scott Welts of the USS Planthoria," Chief Security lied, perfecting a Scottish accent. "And. . . I have been wantin' to speak with you."
Worf hunched his brows forward.
"I was not aware that Romulans were allowed to settle on Earth." Worf said.
"My mother was smuggled in and went under the ruse that she was a Vulcan," Chief Security said, sitting down into a chair. "How was it when you first . . . stop servin' the Enterprise?"
"Hmm. . . Question, eh?" Worf said.
"Simple line of questions, as everyone I know is bein' decommissioned." Chief Security said.
Worf's stoic face turned into a look of loss.
"That is a subject . . . A rather . . . sad one." Worf said.
Chief Security nodded.
"Me question, sir." Chief Security said.
"It was . . ." Worf said. "I didn't really believe what I did at first was real afterwards. But then I was serving in the Klingon civil war with my brother;it felt unrealistic. I had dreams for days that I was still on the Enterprise. That I had not resigned but in fact stayed aboard. For days onwards I had a bad habit of calling to my former captain when he wasn't on the ship." Worf looked down toward the floor. "It was a . . . Rocky period in my life." Worf looked back up toward the security holoprogram. "How does it feel to get off your first ship?"
"I have yet to experience that, sir." Chief Security said.
"I am a holoprogram, aren't I?" Worf asked.
Chief Security was surprised.
"It doesn't take a android long to realize after seeing people come in of different races request for a chat," Worf said. "Tell me. . . How will it feel to lose everything you've gained? Your friends and your family. I assume you coming here means you are losing everyone you hold dear to your heart." He put the champagne on the table. "Drop the Scottish act."
"Heartbreaking, sir." Chief Security said.
"Yes, I achieved sentience . . ." Worf stood up then approached the young Romulan. "And I want you to delete my program so I will be in peace at Sto-vo-kor."
Chief Security gasped.
"You are asking me to kill you, sir," Chief Security said. "And I refuse to do it on a Klingon. You must die in combat!"
"That I do," Worf said. "Computer: make a Klingon battlefield."
The scenery turned into a battlefield with a paved area and two weapons.
"Bat'leth." Chief Security said.
"You are familiar to my weapons." Worf acknowledged.
"I have used it once, before, on you in a parallel timeline defending my captain." Chief Security said.
"How did you escape that timeline?" Worf asked, picking up his Bat'leth.
"The timeline we went into would later become a paradox and since we were not part of it, yet; it did not affect us or our progression of history," Chief Security said picking up the Bat'leth.
"And who won?" Worf asked,
"You did, sir." Chief Security said.
"Call me 'sir' and I am ripping your head off," Worf said. "Call me 'Worf'."
Yes sir, Chief Security thought charging at the Klingon.
. . . 6:10 PM. . .
Chief Security walked out of the holodeck trembling.
He had, this time, defeated Worf.
"Computer. . ." Chief Security said.
"Yes sir?" The computer said.
"Delete Admiral Worf's previous memory and history files to before he had been activated on Enterprise-Z," Chief Security said. "Make him a fresh slate."
"This will take five minutes." The computer said.
"Take all the time you need, computer." Chief Security said, then he walked down the lone hallway with his head lowered and sulked shoulders.
. . . 6:20 PM. . .
. . . Engine room. . .
Stern knew they were pushing their luck by forcing the engines to go much faster than they should.
Franky came into the engine room along with the two solid related Engine workers.
"How fast have we speeded up our arrival to Selios Three?" Stern asked.
"Five mega-light days." The second Engineer Ensign said, glowing white.
"FIVE MEGA-LIGHT DAYS? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?" Stern asked.
"No, Chief." The first Engineer Ensign said, glowing white as well.
"We must cut down the rate of light and speed progression to our destination to HOURS, men!" Stern said. "One of you must come up with the idea of sending ourselves faster than the speed of mega light then I will kiss the one who gets the idea!"
The three men share a look.
The idea of being kissed by the Chief Engineer was tempting but . . .
"Perhaps we can evolve and do all the helping." The second Engineer Ensign said.
"Yeah, me and my pal can do all the work for you." The first Engineer Ensign said.
Franky grew a horrorfied facial expression.
"I told you, no evolution!" Stern said.
"I agree, we can find another way." Franky said.
"There is no way it can be avoided." The second Engineer Ensign said.
"Sorry Chief," The first Engineer Ensign said. "We got friends to take care of."
The incredibly advanced warp engines were being pushed to their limits.
The two engineers turn into white glowing individuals then take on the shape of balls. This is when the engine were pushed beyond their limits sending the ship tilting over. The remaining engineers grabbed onto grip as the Enterprise-Z trembled from side to side. A bright light emitted from the center of the warp room out of the large machine with a odd shaped door in the shape of a square fully kept in place by the most hardest and toughest bolts in the galaxy that wouldn't budge unless someone put in a code. There is a pad of numbers situated to the doors left hand side with glowing buttons.
The ship went forward through the continuum of time and space.
The Enterprise came to a abrupt stop.
"Barnabas to Stern! What the hell happened down there?"
"Two of my men just evolved taking the ship with it. "
"That explains why we are four hours away from Selios Three."
"They. . . They did it. . . Stern out."
. . . Medical Bay. . .
. . . 7:00 PM. . .
Sonny could feel lighter than he ever been.
His body felt like he could fly on out of the Enterprise-Z.
They were three hours away from civilization.
"Activate Emergency Medical Holoprogram II." Sonny said.
EMH II appeared with a device on his shoulder in the middle of the holopad room.
"What is your emergency?" EMH II asked.
"I have no emergency," Sonny said. "Goodbye. . . Charlie."
With a final glow overtaking his body our CMO transforms into a ball of pure powerful energy. His legs felt like they no longer existed. He felt a unusual urge to go out of the starship out into the open wild where life may be . . . more different. Full of endless possibilities. Full of new and incredible knowledge to hold. He took one last look back at his holoprogram friend then soared on in through the metal hide, seeing endless planets before his sight,galaxies, universes, and clouds that made strange shapes. He soared on through numerous levels of planes, lands, and folds in time.
Sonny knew so much yet so little about where he was going.
Now our little holoprogram friend was left alone virtually on the brink of tears.
They worked together for so long and this is how they depart.
"Goodbye . . . Doctor Degrias." EMH II said.
EMH II cried into his hands.
. . . 11:39 PM. . .
It was tough saying goodbye to B-4 and the holoprograms.
So Barnabas joined with the rest of humanity.
Humanity finally made it to the next level into a whole new continuum.
The continuum where it could be decided if humanity should join or make their own continuum. However, they all popped up in the Q continuum. Q, at least the one Barnabas had seen, was reading a book using a pair of old styled glasses. It was odd to say for the least to see him acting 'old' and 'retired' like. Hadn't he just pissed off the godly being. There were people on the stairs who seemed full of energy and life.
"Hello," Came Amanda at the top. "We are the Q."
"We are here to help." Came Q's son, Q, right beside her.
There were silence but a fury of rage rested on the shoulders of the much older intermixed races.
"If you are the Q. . ." One started to say. "WHY THE HELL HAVEN'T YOU BEEN AROUND FOR A THOUSAND YEARS?"
"What the HELL DID WE DO?"
"DO YOU REALIZE HOW WE'VE BEEN EXPECTING FOR YOU, DAMN IT?"
"HEY, LETS GO MAKE OUR OWN CONTINUUM!"
"HOLD IT, WE DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO THAT!"
"LET'S LEAVE THESE LOSERS!"
The Q's attention went to Q who had his ears plugged and his eyes on the book. He seemed to be rather engrossed into it. Q could feel a unnatural glare resting on him. Q put the book on the counter then took off his glasses. He lowered his fake image of himself to display his rather aged appearance with gray hair. He otherwise seemed to be recognizable with a small goatee around his chin. It took only thoughts for the Q to get the message across to Q.
Then Q heard a voice in his head.
A voice he hadn't heard in five quadrillion years.
Picard?, Q thought.
It was more like a calling.
". . . Picard?" Q said, out loud getting up off the rocking chair with eyes wide and a look of shock on his face.
Q reappeared in the dead center of the crowd making a wide circular space.
"NONE OF YOU ARE LEAVING THIS CONTINUUM WITHOUT LEARNING TO HARNESS YOUR POWERS," Q said, holding his hands up making his message go across the masses through the process of thought. "My absence are none of your concern!" Q felt the calling, it was more like the one where someone was calling for his attention in such a powerful way. He looked around searching for the source of the voice that-should-be-very-dead. "NONE OF IT."
Q's eyes landed on Barnabas.
Q raised an eyebrow.
Why is he looking at me that way?, Barnabas thought
Q lowered his eyebrow turning his attention to the crowd.
"YOU WILL BE TRANSPORTED TO THE STADIUM WHERE YOUR FATES AS Q OR M WILL BE DECIDED, OR TO MAKE A NEW CONTINUUM AFTER YOU HAVE BEEN TRAINED BY OUR PROFESSIONAL Q," Q said. Then he started to raise his hand up preparing to snap his fingers. "I do realize I am very old but that is no excuse to be staring at me this way!"
Q snapped his fingers.
The massive crowd vanished leaving only he and Barnabas.
The rest of the Q had gone to the stadium.
Why am I not gone?,Barnabas thought puzzled.
Q reappeared one step away from Barnabas.
"Hello, welcome to the Q continuum," Q said. "It is about time."
"Spit it out, Q," Barnabas said. "Give me a good reason why you left me here and disguised yourself as a young man ON MY DAMN SHIP!"
Q frowned, folding his arms.
"Do you believe in reincarnation?" Q asked.
"No." Barnabas said.
Q sighed, relieved.
"Same here," Q said. "Since my main duty as a Q has been accomplished . . . I feel ready to recycle."
Barnabas's eye were like daggers to Q.
"Q, you just went off topic!" Barnabas said.
"No, I didn't." Q said.
"Yes, the hell you did." Barnabas said.
"I thought I heard Picard's soul from you," Q said. "And I. . ." Q cleared his throat. "When I decided to visit you at first, I decided appearing as my younger self would make the transition more comfortable and a little-less loony-toones to get under your nerves and make you fight even more harder to stay for someone else's sake."
"You planned this all?" Barnabas asked.
"No, not really," Q said, in a low voice. "I never would do that to you, Scrooge."
"Stop calling me Scrooge," Barnabas said. "You miss your captain, don't you?"
"I do," Q admitted. "Every day."
"Why can't you just go in time and visit him?" Barnabas asked.
"I can't." Q said.
"Yes, you can!" Barnabas said.
"I can't, Scrooge." Q said.
"Why?" Barnabas asked, his eyes narrowed.
"Because I care too much!" Q said. "The ones most close to me can become weapons!"
"That never stopped you!" Barnabas said.
"I know how he dies, isn't that enough?" Q asked. "No lessons, no games, no tricks!" He waved his hand in the air making the Enterprise D miniature version of itself appear in his hand. "There is nothing in his life I can exploit anymore," He made the Enterprise D be crushed into his hands. "And teach him about!"
"That's not enough!" Barnabas said. "You are an old man Q and doesn't it seem right to be honest with your friend?"
"You don't know how it was like coming to this decision, Mr Scrooge." Q said, his voice trembling in anger and mixed emotions.
"Damn you,Q," Barnabas said, grabbing Q by the shoulders tightly. "You have convinced yourself that the only way to keep your friend safe,your only friend, is by NEVER. EVER. SEEING HIM AGAIN!" Barnabas took his hands off the entity's shoulders. "I don't know how you can do it. Not visiting your friends again when they are in their old years. Don't you think they will miss you?"
Q's face did not falter.
"No," Q said, with a shake of his head. "No one misses me because they are dead."
Barnabas narrowed his eyes toward the aged entity.
"You asked me if I believed in reincarnation," Barnabas said. "Perhaps your old friend MISSES YOU."
That made Q freeze staring at the young captain's direction.
"No," Q said. "I did it for them."
"Like it or not,you have one last visit for Captain Picard," Barnabas's voice grew stern and serious. "He may be dead. But he is very alive in me." Barnabas looked at the entity who seemed like he could break apart at any minute to reveal a little child. "You can't convince me that you moved on."
Q stared at the man.
"I can hear the calling. . ." Q said, briefly looking in the distance then returned his attention to the tall Cardassian/Romulan. "Do you know how rare it is to be called by a human?"
"I guess: very rare." Barnabas said.
"Maybe. . . I will recycle myself after this one last visit." Q said, with a small smile.
"Hey, what happens when you've recycled yourself?" Barnabas said.
"I become a new Q, practically a baby," Q said. "I have been avoiding it for a long time."
Then Q vanished in a streak of light taking Barnabas to one of thousands of Stadiums made for the new batch of omnipotent omniscients.
. . . 2405. .
. . Vulcan. . .
Being Ambassador of Vulcan has been rather handy.
It was his diplomatic way, probably, that made the Vulcans want him as a Ambassador.
Picard was reading a book when he saw a flash of white light.
"Q," Picard said. "Get out of my ready room."
"You are not in a ready room, mon capitaine," Came a older voice.
Picard lowered the book to see a rather aged Q leaning against the doorframe.
"My god, you've aged," Picard said. "But I was told-"
"You were told of a timeline that never happened," Q said, coming over to the chair. "I have to say . . . It has been five quadrillion years since I last met with you."
"Where have you been?" Picard asked.
"Out," Q said. "Galloping about, messing with different quadrants, elevating species,and pouring my attention onto somewhere else. How's life been for you?"
"You know," Picard said. "You are the omniscient one."
"I am terrible at this," Q admitted, throwing his hands up in the air in defeat. "I only came because you called my name."
"No, I did not." Picard said.
"Your soul called my name, Ambassador," Q said. "And I deserve to know why."
Picard was baffled.
"Why are you asking me when it has not happened?" Picard asked.
"Because the only time a soul calls out for another is when they are soul mates and we are not soulmates," Q said. "That I know very well."
"You must have been imaging things." Picard said.
Q sighed, in relief.
"I needed to hear that," Q said. He had one of his old smiles toward the Ambassador. "Thank you, Ambassador."
Q snapped his fingers vanishing in a white flash.
Picard looked back down toward his novel, and then, he was hit with a lonely feeling.
Did he say the wrong words?
Barnabas was the last Cardassian/Romulan to be assigned a Q.
"You're a special case." Came the reception Q.
"What kind?" Barnabas asked.
"We picked the perfect Q for you." The reception Q said, with a soft smile.
Barnabas frowned, knowing there is no way for 'perfection'.
"Riiiiight." Barnabas said.
He had seen Sonny, Stern, and many other people who used to be aboard his ship be taken away by the Q who had different appearances about them. He sat down into the chair now in what appeared to be a Doctor's Practice from the 21st century. He hated waiting. Barnabas believed it was a waste of his time and patience. How long had Barnabas been waiting? Was it eons? Decades? Centuries? Milliania's? It felt so long.
"James Dean Barnabas." Came a comment that drew him out of his train of thought.
Barnabas stood up to see a young man who resembled Q by the reception desk.
"Yes?" Barnabas said.
The Q seemingly floated over to Barnabas.
"Hello, I am Q," Q said, holding his hand out. "I am Q's son."
Barnabas shook Q's hand.
"So what does that make you?" Barnabas asked.
"Hm?" Q said, as they stopped shaking hands.
"My instructor, teacher, professor?" Barnbas asked.
"Your instructor," Q said. "But if you prefer to call me 'Teacher' then you are welcome to. You are going to be with me for the next ten thousand years."
"Okay. . . Teacher." Barnabas said.
"I have a feeling this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship." Q said.
The two vanished in a white flash.