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Spectres of the Soul

Posted on Fri Nov 25th, 2011 @ 12:40pm by Lieutenant Commander Soraya Delrisa & Lieutenant Artem Rihanoff & Chief Warrant Officer Akina Jrez

Mission: All Souls Descend. Season 2, Episode 6
Location: Orias Station
Timeline: After "Crossing Into the Unknown"

OLD

Immediately, the lieutenant commander picked up his rifle and aimed it in the direction of where the two women had departed. Quickly taking his hand away from his rifle, he tapped his combadge. "Ra-Movraii to Commander Mason. What's going on down there?" After a few seconds of silence, he went to tap his 'badge again, but a peculiar noise slowly began to rise from within it, a cross between static and an echo, but it was not that that got Xal's attention.

It was the thing that reached out towards him from above.

NEW

Wires can be wonderful things. They can carry messages; they can carry sounds; they can carry images.

They can also carry death. Electrocution is an ever present hazard when working with wires.

In all his lives, Jrez had never seen the likes of what was now happening though. The wires hanging from the ceiling had - he had no other term for it - taken on a life of their own. They moved of their own volition and they moved towards Ra-Movraii. They circled, seeking to surround and isolate him. Jrez drew his phaser and, with no hope that it would achieve anything, fired. In this, at least, he was not disappointed. It was not much consolation.

For want of anything better to do, he took the phaser and shoved it forcefully into the open shaft console. There was a scream from somewhere but the wires withdrew. Jrez's best estimation was that they had executed a tactical retreat; they were waiting to see what would happen next. Jrez drew some solace from the fact that at least the First Officer was out of immediate danger.

He drew absolutely none from the fact that he had not one clue what to do next.

The Efrosian's sweat had broken almost into a full downpour of cold droplets, running down the ridges of his face and off of his moustachios. For the briefest of moments, before a bright orange beam had cut them away, the tortured faces of Cardassians and Starfleet Marines had glared at him with empty, shadowy eyes, their arms reaching out for him. And he recognised each one of them from Dallos II.

"What... what was that?" Ra-Movraii asked, attempting to restore some composure to himself as he steadied his body. Above, sparks were dropping from some wires where the spectres had just been. Ever the cynic, the lieutenant commander refused to acknowledge what he believed he just saw before him.

Artem the only truly inexperienced officer in the small group of men had been paralyzed with fear. Both the scream from the unshakable Commander Mason and then the station which seemed to have taken on itself the task of finishing off the three man team.
"Commander", fighting his Russian accent to be understood by the Efrosian. "What is happening?"

Jrez pulled the phaser back out of the console and bent to inspect the damage. It was a lot less than he'd expected. Looking closer, he realised that the circuits were repairing themsleves. No, that was not quite right; inside he could see tiny figures scurrying about. Some were more defined than others: some he could see clearly, some were a vague outline, some were nothing more than a disembodied head.

He looked closer. There was something unnervingly familiar about these figures.

He knew them.

Each and every one of them were people out of the Jrez symbiont's lives. The disembodied heads were people the first Jrez host knew and interacted with - for better or worse. As he moved through the hosts the outlines became clearer until he reached those that he, Akina Jrez, had known. He searched until he found the one he was looking for. As soon as he saw the blue skin he knew it was her. As soon as he saw her he could hear her voice in his head.

"You should have tried harder, Akina. I would have come back to you if you'd tried to hold onto me. But you let me go. What was I to do? You cut me adrift. I had to turn to those who at least offered me comfort and love."

"You left me, Thalal. Yes, I let you go back to Andor. I let you go because it was what you needed to do. You'd fought against it for years but you knew you could not evade your responsibility forever. I would have taken you back in an instant but you made it clear you were staying on Andor. Thalal, I would still take you back in an instant."

"You say that, Akina but, I wonder, do you really mean it? One of your previous hosts hates Andorians and you always to listened more to your hosts than to me. No, Akina, just say what you really mean. Say goodbye and leave it at that."

She turned her back on him and resumed work, fitting a wire that looked more like a cable compared to her diminutive size back into it's housing.

Tears ran down Jrez's face. It was the unfairness of it all that really rocked him. He thought he'd been doing the right thing in allowing Thalal zh'Simal to go back to Andor to participate in the shelthreth. He thought he was letting her fulfil her destiny; he thought that by not standing in her way the burden on her would be eased. Now here she was accusing him of not fighting for her. What did she want him to do, engage in ritual combat for her?

He closed his eyes and ran his mind through a calming routine. When he opened his eyes the figures were blessedly gone. They had done their work, the wiring was now back to perfect working order.

"This is a waste of time!" Ra-Movraii then said loudly, picking up his gear and making his way towards the door Mason had left out of. "Whatever the hell is going on here, it's obviously what tore the crew apart and is now doing the same to us." He had been here before, during the wars with the Cardassians, and the tactics they would use to try and turn men against one another. Brothers in arms would be at each other's throats, and the whole unit would collapse unless they remained strong.

"The crew's dead, Henrys," he said to Jrez, trying to get his attention. It was only after a brief second that he noticed what he had called the Trill, and it had been an even briefer second than that that he actually believed he had been back on that muddy planet, surrounded by explosions and phasers, dead marines and Cardassians. "Let's move, Chief. There's nothing here. We'll find another way to get to the control room, but I'm not going to be killed by copper wiring. Not after all of the things I've already been through - that's not the way I'm going to go."

Jrez nodded absently, his mind still far away from the darkened room he was standing in. Ra-Movraii was halfway to the door before he shook himself into motion.

Get a hold of yourself, Akina he thought. It wasn't real. You imagined it. You're senses are overloaded because you're used to having instruments to tell you what's going on. Yes, that's it, your senses are overwrought.

But he knew that wasn't it at all.

TBC

 

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