December 22 2012, 05:00 AM
Re: December 2012 Writing challenge: Gift of a Lifetime
VII Epilogue B:
“It wasn’t John Ryder’s fault” Eric Lysander mused to himself, “He was trying to be kind.” But the words had done it; they broke the bubble he tried to build around himself for this day. He set up the tour with the Prefect for this day, let the rest of his First Contact team off for the day and even changed his schedule to use the mind-numbing Stardate calendar system.
All so he wouldn’t have to remember what day it was; the day of God, the day of family, of gifts, of celebration. For him, Christmas was the ‘golden sombrero’, zero for four with four strikeouts. God failed him, no family or friends, no reason to celebrate, and his ‘gift’ floated somewhere in space in who knew how many pieces. He hated the day, and every moment of it. Worst of all it was his fault in the first place, if he’d kept his mouth shut in the mess weeks before this would be just another day.
The Commodore wasn’t much help either, where was Transporter Room 5 anyway? He found a chief sitting at a Security office just down from Merrimack’s berth.
“What’s in the cup Chief?”
“Eggnog sir. Want a cup? We have loaded and unloaded.”
“What do you have?”
“Do I have to answer sir?” Eric understood he already had. Merry freaking Christmas indeed. The idea of loaded eggnog sounded good all of a sudden, once he got in his quarters he’d drink it until he couldn’t find the cup with the container; or better yet drink something without the eggnog. Instead he had to go to Bay A, the shuttle docking bay, for some stupid reason.
“No chief, just tell me where Transporter Room E is.”
“50 meters on the left sir. Can’t miss it.”
After a refresher stop before the meeting with the Commodore, Eric found as antsy an Ensign as he ever met running the transporter. It didn’t help his mood or fear as he introduced himself.
“Captain Lysander ensign. I need to go to Bay A, Commodore Bona authorized the intra- station beaming.”
The ensign visibly relaxed. “Thank you for coming sir, the Commodore has called three times in the last five minutes wondering where you were. He’s pretty hot under the collar sir. Is he always that angry sir?”
“Yes. But don’t worry ensign; it’s just another day in paradise for you. I wear the fireproof suit.”
“Good to know sir. Please remember that because of the nature of the transport it will take longer than usual to finish. Don’t move until you are released.”
As one who avoided transporters at all costs, Eric didn’t know that part of the process. “Ensign, don’t screw this up, I hate transporters.”
“I hate them too sir, that’s why I make a point to stand behind the controls and not on a pad.” After a few adjustments he shouted out “Ready sir.”
“We have the captain sir, the pattern is nominal.”
“Energize lieutenant; you are dismissed when beaming is completed.”
Eric finished materializing and stood there for a moment to make sure it completed. He heard a door closing, but he didn’t see it; the beam in had him facing the back wall.
“Ensign!“ he shouted. Instead of a response a finger taped him on the shoulder. Turning around, in front of him in all her glory stood Captain Phoebe McKizer, blonde hair around her shoulders, smile as wide as the galaxy and a Rutanium cross hanging from her neck. Suddenly Eric’s Christmas became a celebration after all.
“Surprise! Merry Christmas Captain, or did you decorate the station just for my return?”
Eric went numb, had his gift really come back to him? There was only one way to find out. He grabbed her with both arms and squeezed. She felt like Phoebe, she kissed like Phoebe, and she smelled like Phoebe. He decided never to let go, ever.
Finally breaking off the kiss she had an accusatory tone in her voice. “Eric, you act like you thought I wasn’t coming back. Did you stop believing?”
“You never said you believed. Then all I heard was that Trafalgar was gone and there were no survivors. It’s only been a month since the battle. What was I supposed to believe?”
She pulled him tightly again and put her lips next to his ear. “I said I believe you Eric, and I never stopped believing you, and you were right. I’ve only got one gift for you Captain, if your commitment is real.”
“I always hold to my commitments Captain McKizer. Let’s pay our respects to the Commodore so you can find that out for yourself.”
Last edited by CaptainGold; December 23 2012 at 01:31 AM.
Reason: Complete revision of the Epilogue, to finally make it readable