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Old December 19 2010, 09:34 PM   #151
mirandafave
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

So they finally locate the Sol and Luna - only they don't they only detect one! Things should be looking up but they still remain desperate as they are a long way being able to get to them because of the subspace damage.

The solution to getting to them quicker as given by Icheb seems a bit extreme from the normally reserved and restrained XO. However, the startling development of how the connection to the neural interface is affecting Icheb is subtle but clear. And it bodes not well for things for him. I can only suspect that the effects are akin to a drug. He is to degrees a relapsed addict given his past connection to the Collective. This taste of what he could process as a super intelligent person has to be stimulating and overwhelming. And then there is the chance to know Omega as well. Damn. Frightening temptations for Icheb and could cloud his future judgements re: offers from the RBorg.

However, for Adele the options forwards are limited. Trust the RBorg; use Omega; allow partial assimilation of Tesseract. WTF? I doubt any of those options appeal to her. And now she cannot be sure of her XO.

Damned fascinating developments.
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Old December 20 2010, 03:36 AM   #152
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

Adele has some more decisions to make. And choice between a bad option and a bad option. It's not easy to be a captain, is it?

We know a little bit what happens with Luna and Sol but I wonder if something more didn't happen after our last "look inside".
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Old December 20 2010, 08:59 PM   #153
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

Hmmm, some very tough decisions. Oyugo seems determined not to defy the Omega Directive. But she hasn't yet enforced either. I guess we'll have to wait and see how long it takes find Sol and Luna without following Icheb's suggestions.
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Old December 20 2010, 10:05 PM   #154
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

a fascinating take on a person interfacing with a ship (James T Kirk's secret desire!)

I've found the idea fascinating for a long time and the Omega aspect makes this a dangerous scenario. If Icheb can interface with the resistance ship so can every other borg enhanced being. It makes the danger of using Omega in such a wide application a quandrant wide threat.

Let's hear what Shane Beckley has to say about that!
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Old December 22 2010, 03:27 AM   #155
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

mirandafave -- Thanks so much for the comments. I really like your analogy comparing the neural interface to an ex-drone being like drugs to a former addict. The thing about Icheb is, he never had a choice. Not even once. He was sent to the Borg by his parents, the Borg had their way with him, and when he was damaged, they cut him off. He wanted to rejoin the Collective, but Janeway convinced him it was impossible. Then the second time around with his parents, all of those decisions were out of his hands, too. This is the first time he's been exposed to something similar to what he "lost" since he's been an adult in charge of his own destiny. It's going to have an impact. It remains to be seen how large that impact will be.

Gul Re'jal -- We'll see what happens with the Sol and Luna. Things weren't looking so good for them the last time we saw them. As for Adele, yeah. Her job is not an easy one at all. She's barely had a chance to breathe since this mission began. Thanks so much for reading and reviewing!

Enterprise1981 -- That's an interesting observation you made, that Adele seems to be trying to ride the fence regarding Omega. She hasn't blown it up, but she's not eager to use it just yet. I think your assessment is accurate right now, but we'll see how her attitudes might develop given more time. Thanks for the comment!

Oldstredshrtevr -- Haha. You're always looking for the Admiral. We will indeed see what he thinks about things soon. As for Icheb -- yes, perhaps he's living Kirk's dream, in a way, but then again, we've also seen the high price he's paid for the ability to do it. As always, thanks so much for reading and sharing your thoughts.
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Old December 22 2010, 07:00 PM   #156
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

Yeah, I figured that hooking up an ex-drone to a Borg vessel would probably not be a good idea. Adele better be careful that she doesn't lose control over her first officer here. And Icheb best remember that he is already on thin ice for lying about his condition and various other questionable calls.

There are going to be heaps of paperwork Adele will have to complete after this mission is over.

Good stuff.
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Old December 29 2010, 07:39 PM   #157
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

You’ve really upped the ante here, kes7, and to wonderful effect! Your characters are coming into sharp focus as the readers come to know them better with each passing chapter.

Adele’s in one hell of a situation. What remains of her senior staff is riddled with competing loyalties, either to one-another as in the case of Icheb and Maren, or to an outside source as Icheb struggles with the seductive pull and potential life-saving promise of Borg technology.

Though this mission is barely underway, they’ve already lost one and possibly both of their auxiliary starships, not to mention having suffered dozens of casualties among irreplaceable crew. How fraught with danger will this mission be, seeing as they’ve barely set foot into the Delta Quadrant and the crew of Tesseract has not only already been savaged, but they’re now playing fast and loose with some of Starfleet’s most inviolable tenants?
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Old December 30 2010, 02:36 AM   #158
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

Yikes, CeJay! I just saw this! Sorry for the delay in replying, and thanks so much for the review. Yeah, Icheb is on all kinds of shaky ground at the moment. He knows that, but we'll see whether it makes a difference in his choices. And yes, paperwork ... I think Adele has quite a bit of that to do already!

Gibraltar, long time, no see! So glad you're back and posting again. Yeah, Adele has a real mess on her hands, doesn't she? Her XO is being torn in so many directions at once he can't see straight, her second officer is dead (of course, she doesn't know that, yet), her reliable Vulcan is off ship, and her crack engineer is cracked in the head (both literally and figuratively) in sickbay. And the auxiliary ships are a whole other mess. We'll see what happens. Glad you're still enjoying it. Welcome back, and thanks for the comment!

I've got the next chapter 80% done. So there should be more coming in the next few days.
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Old December 30 2010, 07:59 PM   #159
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

Gibraltar wrote: View Post
Though this mission is barely underway, they’ve already lost one and possibly both of their auxiliary starships, not to mention having suffered dozens of casualties among irreplaceable crew.
And a dead second officer to boot. I trust Ryzal is next in line all the while retaining his positions as chief tactical and security officer. And seven more years of this??? I remember during my freshman year in college dreading having to take the same hike between the train station and the main campus down one steep hill and up another everyday for the next four years. Of course, that was before completion of the new student center making that walk far less strenuous.
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Old January 19 2011, 02:59 AM   #160
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

just popped in to see if another chapter is on the horizon. the holidays can be holy heck with little peanuts in the house and everything else you're juggling - hope you'll be able to put one up soon!
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Old January 20 2011, 04:17 AM   #161
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

ORSE wrote: View Post
just popped in to see if another chapter is on the horizon. the holidays can be holy heck with little peanuts in the house and everything else you're juggling - hope you'll be able to put one up soon!
I've got most of the next chapter done. I will try to edit it and get it up very soon. Thanks so much for your continued interest in this story. Check your PMs if you want to know more.
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Old February 8 2011, 03:28 AM   #162
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

CHAPTER TWELVE

USS Tesseract - Sickbay


The release of the hypospray burned cold against Icheb’s neck, in marked contrast to Julian Bashir’s warm hand holding him steady on the other side. “This is the scan Lieutenant O’Connor took of you earlier,” the doctor said, pointing to a graphic on the biobed display, “and this is the scan we took just now.” Icheb compared the two screens. The most recent scan showed a dramatic increase in synaptic activity. “Your synaptic pathways are showing signs of hyperstimulation, and I’m concerned about the extra stress on your cortical implants,” Julian said. “I recommend you limit your time spent interfacing with their ship.”

The doctor continued to speak, but Icheb was barely listening. His mind was going ten thousand directions at once. It was strangely exhilarating. He couldn’t remember the last time he had been able to think so widely and clearly about so many things. He also felt strongly agitated. His best friend and hundreds of others were in grave danger, and all of his good ideas to help them had been carelessly rejected by his captain. His mind sorted frantically through the data he had downloaded from the Resistance vessel’s computer core, formulating plan after backup plan. If they would only listen to him …

Within seconds, the drug Julian had injected started to take effect. The soaring feeling rapidly diminished, and his head started to ache – badly. Without warning, Julian pressed the hypo to his neck again. “That’s for the headache,” he said, as the small device delivered its payload. Icheb looked at him as if noticing him for the first time. “Thank you,” he said, but he couldn’t hide his irritated tone.

“Did you hear a word I just said?” Julian asked, looking at Icheb with concern.

“My synaptic pathways are showing signs of hyperstimulation, and you’re concerned about the extra stress on my cortical implants. You want me to limit my time spent interfacing with their ship.”

Julian gave him a bemused smirk. “Wonderful. Did you hear what I said after that?” he asked.

Icheb frowned. “No,” he admitted. He had been too distracted by his own thoughts, which was unusual for him, to say the least – in fact, he couldn’t remember it ever having happened before.

Julian seemed unsurprised. “I said, ‘Try to avoid connecting to their ship at all until I get a better look at these scans I took,” he repeated. “It’s possible we’ll need to remove that new implant.”

Icheb shook his head. “I’m fine. I simply need time to adapt. I’ll avoid any further interface with their vessel if that’s your recommendation, but I see no reason to remove the device. It could prove useful when we get closer to the auxiliary ships.”

Julian sighed. “Very well,” he conceded, “but I’m concerned about you. Please tell me if you feel anything different than usual. Lingering headache, vision changes, psychological symptoms, strange feelings. I can’t believe the captain let you go ahead with this in the first place,” he admitted. “And I’m honestly surprised you’d want to.”

Icheb frowned. “It wasn’t my first choice,” he said, “but it gave us a needed advantage in locating the evacuees. It would have been selfish to refuse for personal reasons. The alteration to my cortical array was minor and temporary. I can set aside my personal discomfort.”

“It seems you have,” Julian said lightly, and his tone seemed to imply that he thought there was more to it than that. Icheb blushed slightly, but did not respond. “Come here,” said Julian suddenly. “I want you to take a look at something.”

Icheb obediently slid off the edge of the biobed and followed the doctor over to Dena’s highly secured bedside. “I’m going to need your assistance in navigating some of these cybernetics,” Julian said, gesturing toward the woman’s still partially-opened skull, which exposed a section of her cortical array behind a sterile containment field. “I have the notes Voyager’s EMH recorded concerning the removal of Annika Hansen’s implants, along with yours and the other children you were rescued with, but each of your physiologies are unique. It seems that every time the Collective builds a drone, it’s a little bit differently than the last.”

Icheb nodded, staring down at the unconscious alien woman. Many of her bulky external implants had already been removed, leaving wounds to heal and additional technology to remove or neutralize beneath what was left of her skin. He thought of his own extensive scars after The Doctor had removed most of his implants, and the many months of regenerative treatments it had taken for them to heal completely. Even now, a few remained, the only spots on his body that were completely absent of freckles, slightly shiny compared to the surrounding skin. They, along with a few remaining visible stubs of implants, were the reason he almost always wore long sleeves and pants, even in hot climates. The woman in front of him was sure to have an even longer recovery period than he had, considering how much more extensive her implants had been.

“Perhaps you should wait and let her decide how best to proceed,” Icheb said quietly. “It’s possible that if she considers her situation carefully, she may desire to retain some of her more useful components.”

Julian looked at Icheb in surprise and gave him a questioning look. “Why do I think you’re not talking about Dena right now?” he asked.

Icheb refused to meet his gaze. “I simply mean that given the choice, she may wish to have greater control over the implants that remain. It is unlikely you will be able to remove them all,” he pointed out. He suddenly shook his head. “I’m sorry,” he apologized abruptly. “You’re right, I’m not feeling … like myself.” He suddenly glanced over at the door to Maren’s room. “If you don’t mind, I’d like to spend a couple of minutes with her while I’m here.”

Julian looked concerned, but nodded and gestured toward the door. “By all means.” Icheb noticed he kept an eye on him as he walked over to Maren’s door and entered her room.

Inside, he pulled a visitor’s chair next to her bedside and sat down in it, hard. He grabbed Maren’s hand in his own and held it tight. It felt cold to the touch. He looked at her sleeping face and suddenly felt very emotional. “I’m so sorry for everything,” he whispered to her. He leaned forward and brushed her cheek softly with his lips, then settled back into his chair, lost in thought. His mind was racing again, filled with thoughts of Maren, the missing ships, the Resistance, the Collective and everything else – only rather than feeling exhilarated this time, he felt weighed down by it all, and utterly exhausted. Within minutes, he was sound asleep.

*****


USS Tesseract – Main Engineering


“Absolutely not!” Telek nearly shouted. His antennae danced animatedly above his face, which was suddenly flushed a blue so intense it rivaled the swirling contents of the intermix chamber behind him. “With all due respect, sir, this is as insane as O’Connor’s plan to save those drones was. We know nothing about this technology. Our systems aren’t remotely compatible. And you want me risk a catastrophic overload of our power grid and a real chance of blowing us all to hell just to break regs and get to our destination a few hours faster?”

Adele regarded Telek calmly. His blunt Andorian directness aside, she certainly understood his hesitation. Nonetheless, she pressed on. “Commander Icheb believes this will work,” she said. “Every hour counts, and while you may not be familiar with this technology, Lakwa and her people, and to a lesser degree, Commander Icheb, most certainly are. They can provide you with the necessary instruction and supplies. Need I remind you,” she added, “that four hundred people are missing, most of them civilians?”

Telek glared down at his commanding officer, his antennae pointed straight at her. “You need remind me of nothing,” he replied hotly. “I am well aware of the situation. But with O’Connor in sickbay, it’s my responsibility to keep this vessel in one piece. As acting chief engineer, I strongly advise against this course of action. I’ve barely learned Omega exists, and you want me to use it to dump more power into this ship’s structural and propulsion systems than it was ever designed to take? It’s dangerous. Four hundred missing is four hundred missing, but there are another eleven hundred on this ship who stand a good chance of ending up dead if we attempt this. And then what good are we to the missing? That’s before I even get started on the insanity of the method you want me to use to make the modifications. I realize this ship carries a lot of Borg technology already, but using nanoprobes to alter the fundamental operations of this vessel is a step too far. I don’t care how much time it saves. Even O’Connor would say no to that one.”

Adele sighed and locked eyes with the tall Andorian. “Thank you, Lieutenant,” she said sincerely. “I agree with you completely.”

Telek looked surprised. “Captain?”

“I said, I agree with you,” Adele said. She sighed. “I wish there was a way to make this work. But I agree that the risks are simply too great to try this in the time we have left. I just needed a second opinion.”

“Captain, there may be another option,” Telek spoke up.

Adele raised her eyebrows. “I’m all ears.”
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Last edited by kes7; February 9 2011 at 02:38 AM.
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Old February 8 2011, 04:29 PM   #163
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

*running around waving arms wildly in happy dance*

THANK YOU!!! You never disappoint! I've been afraid to ask because I know you're swamped - so glad to see this in my mailbox this morning!!!

So afraid what this means for Icheb - I feel like I've known him for a long time - to feel that he might regret removing some of his implants and that he's tasting the enhancements of Borg technology again and finding it exhilarating - such a knife edge to dance upon! Eeeerk!

I confess - the older I get the more I sometimes think a few implants would help my processing. To have lost that capacity must be bittersweet - I don't imagine everyone would actually want to be stripped of it - even at the cost of personal freedom and individuality. Heresy; I know, but there it is.

Funny to see the captain's interaction with such a highly telepathic being as an Andorian - that they're not fending each other off telepathically says a lot to me about the trust they have established. I imagine the temptation to "put feelers out" as it were - must be strong to both.
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Old February 9 2011, 04:43 AM   #164
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

^ Was it ever established that Andorians are telepathic? The Aenar certainly are. And the antennae give Andorians "quadroscopic vision."
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Old February 9 2011, 04:58 PM   #165
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Re: Star Trek: Tesseract -- Part II

you're right - it could just be a pcoket-verse thing.
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