Limis was tossing and turning in bed, unable to lull herself to sleep with plenty on her mind. She rolled over on her left to see Q lying next to her with his left forearm propping up his head and dressed in the black leather jumpsuit of Section 31. “Hope I didn’t wake you,” he joked.
Limis rolled away from him, flinging the bed covers aside. She put on a gray silk robe and slipped her feet into a pair of slippers. “Do you always have to do that?” she huffed while walking over to the head.
“Not always,” Q replied, sitting up at the foot of the bed. “But I didn’t think you’d invite me into your humble abode. I just wanted to congratulate you on the success of your little excursion.”
Limis splashed some water on her face and looked at Q with an annoyed squint. “‘Little excursion’?” she repeated with a dismissive snort. “Several of my officers were injured or killed.”
Q stood up and parked himself in the doorway to the head with his hands on both sides. “But you were willing to do what was necessary to prevent many more lives from being lost,” he offered. “What’s that saying? ‘The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.’”
“That you say that so matter-of-factly sickens me,” Limis snapped. She nudged him aside, trying not to look him in the face and trudged back into the bedroom.
“You wound me,” Q retorted while holding one hand on his heart.
Limis rolled her eyes while pouring water from a pitcher into a glass. “Spare me your disingenuous expectations of pity,” she said while taking a sip. She then walked back over to the bed and set the glass of ice-cold water on the nightstand. “I may have improved the lives of this generation and of the generations to come,” she continued while sitting on the edge of the bed. “But in the here and now, I still have to live with the consequences for myself and the people around me. I am the one who has to send messages to the families of those killed and tell them they’re never coming home again. For disobeying orders, I may end up before a court-martial and back in a penal colony. And the Romulans will use this incident against us whenever beneficial to their own expansionist ambitions.”
“Should you really be wasting time and energy worrying about hurting their feelings?” Q wondered, seating himself on the bed and leaning over in front of her. “It’s just a temporary alliance with a people who can never be trusted to honor any kind of peace agreement.”
“I’m really not in the mood to debate with you,” Limis shot back. “The fact of the matter is, where you see a lower lifeform, I see people with hopes and dreams. If being as powerful and all knowing as the Q means being without empathy and compassion, then I want no part of that.”
“Yet you’re willing to continue to put many more lives on the line for the greater good,” Q offered. “How many more will die before this war your Federation is fighting is over? How many shipmates, how many friends
will you lose before it’s all said and done?”
Q then departed in a flash. Limis sighed as she kicked off her slippers, slid off her robe and lay back down on the bed, still unable to fall asleep. She was jolted back up when a comm chime sounded.
“Bridge to the captain,”
Limis tapped the comm panel on the nightstand. “Yes, Number One?” she replied with groggy sigh.
“We’ve just received new orders. We’re to put in at Starbase G-6 for a quick layover before embarking on a push into enemy territory.”
“Understood. I assume you’ve already set a course.”
“Let me know we’ve arrived at starbase. Limis out.” She closed the channel and scooped her combadge off the nightstand.
She stared at the combadge and contemplated the confrontation that seemed inevitable since the Federation Alliance victory at Chin’toka-- the final assault against the enemy fortress.
“It’s beginning,” she mumbled.