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Between Worlds (Part Two)

Posted on Thu Mar 7th, 2019 @ 12:56pm by Lieutenant Commander James Barnes & Captain Sun Mei Xiang

Mission: Points Of Light
Location: Seppala Station, Operations
Timeline: Immediately after Part One

[Operations, Seppala Station]

Mei felt the device he had made slip through her fingers as she gave up on having it pull him back. Whatever he'd done on the other side seemed to have made it useless. The El Aurian was fading as well, looking more akin to a hologram than a real person. She only had one response. "Diu," She said quietly at first, scrambling to her feet. "James, if you can hear me this went FUBAR," She barked at him, but as nothing happened. "Computer, open comms, now." There was a chime, "Diu! Who the hell do I get to help for this James? Hm?" She waved her arms at the fading form of her intelligence officer. She growled at herself. "Mei to Cai."

"Muqin?"

"Cai - can you slip away?"

"For what?" She asked, "We're still kind of watching Alex and Reiko."

"Just get somewhere hidden and hold tight." Mei said quickly, "I need your help."

There was a pause and then some shuffling. A few seconds later there was a quiet response. "Okay. Why am I..."

"Computer, site to site Cai to my position."

"Wait you're going..." The comm shut off as the room filled with a shimmer of silvers and blues, and after a second the confused young woman stood in the room. She threw her arms down and her eyes widened, "What the hell, mom?"

Mei pointed towards the intelligence officer. "That. He's been slipping between timelines - we were trying to get some intel from it" She paused for a moment, and then pointed to the device on the ground. "Something went wrong with the failsafe, and I can't fix it. I don't have a Chief Engineer, and the one I'm considering doesn't trust me."

"Oh." Cai sighed, "So, he built a focus, basically." The young part orion stepped over to the deviced. "Modified Tricorder, right?" She said as she knelt over the device.

"Obviously." Mei spoke somewhat harshly.

"He tore it in half." Cai spoke as she tore apart the tricorder further. "Whatever he did on the other side sheered it between the timelines. He was probably trying to steady himself in the other side. See, circuits can't connect due to pieces of them being in the other timeline." She pointed as some things in the device, but her mother just shook her head.

"Can you fix it?"

"No, its... waai zo." Cai tapped it thoughtfully with a finger before beginning to put it back together, "I mean, without a TI lab, nothing doing. Mister Barnes is probably realizing the same thing on the other side." She took a breath, "I might be able to make a new one, but without his algorithms that'll be just another tricorder with some weird circuits." She paused, "The Circuits might work still, though, if both sides were hit and activated at the same time. We just need a way to signal him when to hit it."

[Edasichian Bridge]

There was a bright flash, and James materialized fully on the bridge of the Edasicihian vessel. He was holding his tricorder, trying to take some readings on his chroniton stabilizer. He had to make sure he could make it back when he wanted. He looked up to see that all eyes had shifted to him. "I come in peace," he said.

The rear Edasichian, the one appearing as a Talaxian paused, but the rest continued moving off to their destination. "Listener. You should know better than to play with the time stream." He seemed to take a breath and finally turned, the image of the Talaxian fading and the very non-mammalian Edasichian appearing. It was, or rather, had been a mammal at some point. Possibly the Talaxian it took the form of prior, but now in its true form, it was a corrupted creature. It was twisted and decrepit, but alive - bolstered by some cybernetics, but with almost fungal qualities in places. It took a moment to look at itself, "Seems your device may have dragged me closer to your time. This form seems decayed..." He shook his head. "I fear speaking to you is revealing too much to us - what brings you to cross the lines and risk a tear?"

James raised an eyebrow. "We're trying to save this planet," he nodded to the screen, "In your future. But even we are not from then, having been thrown back in time to a point between us. The temporal distortions and chroniton radiation seem to be causing more of a disturbance on the surface. I'm an El-Aurian," he said, holding his hands out to either side, "Our races have encountered each other for centuries, so you know our sensitivity to temporal phenomena. I experienced flashbacks and side steps to alternative timelines, so my commander sent me on a fact finding mission. I inadvertently ended up here in your operations center."

He closed his tricorder, taking a few steps to look at various consoles and screens. He paused at one that was deactivated, providing a clear reflection. James looked at himself briefly. Despite his advanced age, he still had the features of a Human male in his early to mid 20s. Now, he could see them softening. His eyes, normally a deep and piercing blue, were a mix of blue and green, close to teal. Reverting back to the equally bright green eyes he had as a teen and child. His eyes widened, his breath quickening. Not only was the Edasichian being pulled forward, it seemed James was being pulled backwards.

He spun on his heel towards the Edasichian. "You detected transwarp signatures," he paused, "The Borg?"

"Yes," The Edasichian spoke, "And if you are here with no control, I assume it will go poorly." He shook his head, "I can't let those thoughts get back to the rest." He sighed. "We met them long ago, but they've recently grown interested in our technologies, and seem to have followed us to this new section of the galaxy." He gave a glance across the room for a moment, "We are not warriors, though. Closer to... Gardeners." He twisted his head to the El Aurian, "We don't have a lot of of time. What facts do you need to find?"

"We've detected orbs, these balls light on the planet. They're drawn to sources of chroniton energy," he paused, "Did you put them there? And what is this base used for?"

"Orbs of light?" The creature shook its head, before it seemed to think about it and make a realization. "We do have automated repair systems - they often appear outside our timelines as light as they work to repair... joining the two timelines temporarily." It pointed to his device, "Not unlike your device." It made a motion to the base. "This is a science station - or that would be the most obvious description. We call it an uplift station, and they are scattered across all of our uplifted worlds." He answered, but as the timelines continued to converge, his voice began to fail, growing ever older it seemed.

"So, this planet....you've terraformed it and and added a parallel timeline?" James asked. He started tapping commands into his tricorder. He was going to have to terminate the link between the timelines soon before he turned into an infant and the Edasichian died of old age.

"Terraforming? Quaint, but not exactly..." The creature almost groaned. "We build worlds, encourage growth of species with potential... to do so, we have to twist timelines a bit..." It was starting to struggle quite a bit. "That doesn't matter now." It paused, "Our station controls the other timeline... but without proper maintenance it will degrade... and eventually, a catastrophic failure will rupture space time, destroying the system. A failsafe should have shut down the research, then let the station be crushed..."

James raised an eyebrow. He wondered what was preventing the fail safes from engaging. He felt his body beginning to change, and realized it was time to pull the plug. "I'll see what we can do," he said, "Thank you." James tapped two commands and disappeared from the Edasichian timeline.

[Operations, Seppala Station]

There was a bright flash, and James fell from a few feet in the air. He hit the deck with a thud. The operations center was spinning as James tried to push himself up off the deck. He tried to say something, but ended up vomiting instead. After regaining his composure slightly, he looked at Sun.

"What's the date? How long have I been gone?" he said, rubbing the thick five o'clock shadow that had grown on his face.

"Same date it was a few minutes ago. The nausea goes away in a few minutes" Cai responded to his question from nearby, taking a quick step over towards him to collect the device.

"Belay that, ensign. Get one of Anvers team up here." Sun spoke into her commbadge.

"You look like you've been gone a bit, though - and you fell. Sucks when the deck moves out from under you doesn't it?" Cai quickly, "I was a street over from where I needed to be when I came back."

"Cai," Mei scolded a bit as the girl examined the device a bit more now as it was back in one piece. "Sorry, James. She's right, you've only been gone for about fifteen minutes. I hadn't even figured out what to tell Christine." She spoke softly. "What do you need?"

James was sitting on both of his knees, his head leaned back. He took a deep breath. It had been a hell of a two days. "I was afraid of that," he rubbed his hands over his face, leaning forward for a moment. He groaned, continuing to lean over for a moment before sitting back up and sliding over onto his butt on the floor. "I've been gone almost two full days. But I have the intel."

He looked at Cai. "Just get me a water, please. No doctors." He then turned to Sun. "Golovin is a world that was built, for all intents and purposes. An older race, called the Edasichians. There's an alternative timeline here, I think they were trying to escape the Borg. That's what the orbs are for - repairing the timeline. If we don't stop the degradation, this whole star system will be destroyed."

-----

Captain Sun Mei Xiang
Commanding Officer, USS Shanghai

Lieutenant Commander James Barnes
Chief Intelligence Officer, USS Shanghai

Edasichian
Unknown

Sun Cai
Civilian

 

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