The Astounding Adventures of Terri Cornelia Lee - Part 8 "Call to Arms"
Posted on Wed Jul 5th, 2017 @ 4:56am by Lieutenant JG Alenis Laren
Edited on on Wed Jul 5th, 2017 @ 4:57am
Episode 4 - Truth, Justice, and the Federation Way
Timeline: 2419, In A Future That Was
::Commander Dolarian's Residence, Oakland::
Terri was still livid - and hungry - as she devoured the lahmahjoon on her plates. How dare they called her dad a traitor? He was the greatest man that had ever lived. Screw Bolanus and all his scumbags. She should march into Starfleet Command tomorrow and give them a piece of her mind. Yep, that's exactly what she would do, and no one could stop her.
Theo walked in through the door of the apartment, visibly exhausted. She took her hair out of it's rigid bun and allowed in to fall in a messy frizz around her shoulders. She rubbed her eyes and sighed quietly as she set down her bag in the entryway. She went to the kitchen table and saw Terri chowing down on a meal for four, and smiled slightly. Some things would never change.
Theo sat down next to Terri, tearing off a piece of lahmahjoon. "I hope your day was better than mine."
"I wish." Terri grumbled and emptied her glass of water before picking up another slice. "You know what they are calling dad? They are calling him a traitor! A traitor! He stopped Dominion advance on Andoria, he took back DS 5 without firing a shot, he's the only reason we haven't lost Betazed and the entire sector with it, and he's being called a traitor by dirtbags who have just flushed the Federation Charter down the toilet!"
Taking a big bite of her lahmahjoon, she continued on ranting. "I'm gonna show Bolanus that the Lees don't take kindly to traitorous scumbags like him." Another big bite. "I wood tuuk hees rss so hald, he wood ven . . . "
Theo shushed her, "Don't talk with your mouth full." Then she sighed again, "I... I wouldn't recommend you speak out quite so soon." She looked down at her plate, somewhat embarrassed. She didn't want to have to restrain Terri from doing what she felt was right, but she couldn't afford to let anyone get hurt.
This time Terri waited till she had swallowed the food. "Don't worry." She assured Theo. "I'll be fine. There's a prototype inter-phasic transport beacon five floors down from where I work. With the beacon I'll be gone before Bolanus even knows what hit him."
Theo shook her head, "No. No, you don't understand. My family is in danger; Nigel, Gustave, Meg and Marion, as well as my whole family on Omicron." She sighed deeply, "I was brought in and interrogated this morning because I'm friends with your father. If you speak out or make a fuss, they know where to find my family and.... and..." She shook her head, refusing to finish that sentence. She just hoped Terri would get the point.
"They did what?!" Terri jumped up from her seat. "They are gonna pay, they are so gonna pay for this!"
"Don't be rash Terri, stirring things up will only make it worse." Theo grabbed her by her shoulders, pushing her back towards her seat. "You can't 'make them pay', because then you and I both will end up paying the real price." Out of the corner of her eye, Theo thought she saw someone walk quickly by the kitchen doorway, but she shook it off, getting back to the matter at hand.
Terri grudgingly set herself back down on her seat. "But they threatened you, those lowlife scumbags. We can't just let them threaten us like that and do nothing."
Theo shook her head, "You aren't understanding me. If we do something about it, my family will die and neither of us will be able to stop it. Getting back at them, even in a small way, isn't worth the risk." Terri certainly was determined, but it was Theo's job to make her see and understand. She wasn't about to quit. She just wished that she could do a Vulcan mind-meld or something so that she could show Terri exactly what she wanted her to hear.
"But . . . Arrg!!" Terri groaned and smashed her fist on the kitchen table. Of course, she understood why she must lay low and keep quiet; it's for Theo, for Gustave, for Marion and Meg, and for everyone else who was close to her, but no amount of understanding could calm the raging storm in her chest.
"I know, I know," Theo replied. She understood. Terri was a fighter, and she didn't want to be a pushover. Theo wished it could be different, but there was no going back now. The deal with the devil had been done, and she just hoped it wouldn't end up costing them too much. She smiled softly at the other woman, "Hey, maybe you can take up karate or something, work off that extra anger."
Still frowning, Terri shook her head. "Karate is so lame. I'm doing Mok'bara now; that's the real stuff." Taking a bite of her lahmahjoon, she asked, "Can I at least beat the crap out of Bolanus in the holosuite?"
Theo sighed and rolled her eyes in disapproval. "Well, they may be monitoring your holosuite programs, but I suppose they can't fault you for beating up on him in there. Just so long as you don't do it in real life." She smiled warmly. She just hoped that Zax would keep his promise to protect her family. Otherwise, she was just glad that Terri was on the same page as she.
"Finally!" Terri let out a long sigh in relief. Of course, that would be no more than a stopgap measure. She need to figure out a way to actually do something more than just beating up holograms without endangering Theo or anyone else close to her. But for now, she would just have to imagine the rest of her lahmahjoon as Bolanus and eat the crap out of it. Yep, that's the plan, eat the crap out of Bolanus the lahmahjoon.
::USS Churchill, In Orbit of Earth::
Lieutenant Laren Alenis looked to her left and then to her right, making sure that she wasn't being followed. It's not that she had done or said anything to rouse anyone's suspicion - she had played her part of an obedient and mindless drone well enough - but these days you could never be too careful.
Finally convinced that she was in the clear, the Bajoran pressed the door chime to her friend's quarters.
"Come in," Gustave said, looking over his shoulder as he threw some clothes into a drawer. He was doing his best to tidy up, but he wished his mom was here to do it for him. He turned all the way around to face the person who had just walked in.
Alenis stepped inside, but not before she had to maneuver herself around a large box of . . . things. Looking around, she said with a slightly exaggerated shock on her face, "By the Prophets, Gustave, I just helped you clean up less than two weeks ago. Now it looks like a targ has ransacked everything, looking for food."
Gustave shrugged guiltily, "I know, I know. Cleaning isn't really my strong suit." He shoved the box of knicknacks she'd almost tripped on under his bed and then sat down, motioning for her to join him. "So what brings you to Casa Gustave?"
Alenis sat down backwards on Gustave's desk chair. "Well, I heard you had a little . . . disagreement with Marcell, and he slapped a reprimand on you. So much for making a good first impression on the new CO, eh?"
Gustave sighed, looking down at his feet. "Yeah, I guess we got off on the wrong foot. I'm too outspoken and opinionated; well, too much so for an underling. I need to reign it in better." He shook his head. He was honestly disappointed in himself. He always liked to get on his superior officers' good sides, but his rashness got the better of him.
"At least you were standing up for Captain Steex." Said the Bajoran, spinning herself in the chair. "What they did to her is just not right. Heck, nothing that has happened since last week is right."
Gustave nodded, "I agree. Things have been getting quite strange around here. And not just on the ship, Earth is changing too."
"Consider yourself lucky that Marcell didn't put you in the brig like he did with Sanchez," Said Alenis. "Don't get me wrong, I give Sanchez a lot of credit for standing up to Marcell. Unlike most other people, he had guts. But when you really think about, you can't fight back if you are locked up. So there was really no good reason for him to needlessly provoke Marcell like that. If you want to fight back, you have to be smart."
"That's true," Gustave nodded. He felt like she was building up to something, but he wasn't sure what. "Go on." He prompted.
With a small smile, Alenis pushed the chair and herself closer to the pilot and turned on her wrist communicator's holographic display. "This was broadcast from Betazed this morning. They are trying to censor it, but it's only a matter of time before everyone else finds out." Said the Bajoran as she played the video feed.
On the holographic display, a middle aged Ktarian woman stood behind a lectern with the insignia of the Kalandra Sector Command Headquarters affixed to its front. Behind her hung the flags of the Federation and Betazed as well as that of Starfleet. She was flanked by several men and women in both Starfleet and civilian outfit, including Admiral Oliver Lee, the Sector Commander, and Lon Elbrun, the Betazoid Chancellor.
"Seven standard days ago," Began N'Verix, the Federation Secretary of Transportation. "Arlon Bolanus and his followers trampled on the Federation Constitution they have sworn to defend and seized the organs of the Federation government on Earth. Due to this hideous act of treason, President Jiv'ek, Speaker LaFleur, Chief Justice Tovel, and most of the cabinet secretaries are now unable to discharge the duties of their offices. As such and in accordance with the Presidential Succession Act of 2359, the powers and responsibilities of the presidency have fallen to me."
"It is with a heavy heart and a determination to restore the proper constitutional order that I accept these responsibilities, and I call upon all members of Starfleet and all patriotic citizens to resist the illegal and unconstitutional regime of Bolanus. And to those who might seek to violate the territorial integrity of the United Federation of Planets or otherwise to do it harm during this most unfortunate crisis, make no mistake, we will respond with any and all necessary measures."
Looking away from the teleprompter, the Ktarian asked, "Questions?"
"Secretary N' . . . President N'Verix, how did you escape your confinement on Benzar and what do you . . . . . ."
At that, Alenis turned off the video feed. Turning to Gustave, she said, "There you go, that's our call to arms."
Gustave sat still for a moment, mulling it over. It was kind of a lot to grasp. He stated nodding, "Okay. That sounds reasonable." The whole idea of being part of a resistance movement enthralled him, but he shook the excited thoughts from his head. He needed to make a clear and reasoned decision, not an emotional one. But either way he looked at it, this side seemed to be the way to go. Yet he still held reservations. What kind of risks would be involved in such an act? Bolanus was in control of the government, so he controlled the fleets and resources. How would they fight?
Gustave wasn't sure where to start asking his questions, so he started with the simplest one, "What do you call yourselves?"
With a mock sigh Alenis said, "Well, I was going to call ourselves the Fighting Flitterbirds, but I was outvoted. So for now we are just the Resistance. I know, I know, it's not very imaginative, but we have got a lot of very good people . . . well, actually it's just me and two other people, but if you join us, it would be four very good people." She finished with a big smile, hoping her friend would come aboard the nascent resistance.
Gustave chuckled at that, "I'm sure it would be." He was stalling at this point. He had questions, but he felt nervous about joining. It was a big decision, and not one he felt he should make on the spot. "I'll think about it, okay? I don't want to make up my mind so soon." He really just needed to talk to his mom first. He was a full grown man, but he still needed his mom's advice sometimes.
Sighing, the Bajoran said, "Alright, but don't take too long. We'll have to make our move sooner rather than later." After a brief pause, she asked, "So how about that friend of yous, Terri, isn't it? She seems like a fighter and someone who would want to do something about this whole mess. Do you think she might be interested?"
Alenis had only met Gustave's friend once, but the girl was . . . impressive and in so many different ways, and Alenis had always thought of herself as a pretty good judge of character.
Gustave shrugged. He might ask her, but he knew she had a tendency to carry things to far and might end up in danger. "I'll talk to her about it," he replied, "but I can't promise you anything."
"That would be great." Smiled Alenis. Glancing around the room, she said, "Now, what should we do about Casa Gustave?"
Gustave exhaled with a whistle, running his hand through his hair. "That's the real question," he replied as he lifted up the bed skirt to reveal all the junk he had shoved under there, "I guess this is a good place to start." He grinned sheepishly and hopped off the bed to start cleaning up.
[To be continued in Part 9 . . .]
Lieutenant JG Laren Alenis
Intelligence Officer, USS Churchill
(NPC - Oliver)
Commander Theo Dolarian
Scientist, Starfleet R&D
Lieutenant Gustave Dolarian
Fighter Pilot, USS churchill
(NPC - Theo)