Episode 4 - Truth, Justice, and the Federation Way
Timeline: MD 03 (March 5, 2393)
[Previously in What to Do - Part 1 "A Chance"]
. . . . . .
She turned back to look at him.
"When General Bolanus took power on Earth, even though deep down I knew he was doing what's necessary to save the Federation from itself and from the corruption that had crippled it, I stood by you and even helped you to topple his government and restore the politicians whose incompetence had allowed the war to drag one for fifteen years. And sure enough, one year after your triumphant return to Earth, the Federation fell, and I saw you die in Terri's arms."
Walking back to where he was sitting, she rested her hands on the table and looked into his eyes. "Don't let that happen again, Oliver. The war cost the lives of tens of billions, yours included."
Oliver took a deep breath and said, "I'm sorry, Nami. I have my orders. But more important, I won't risk a war just for a chance to save my own life."
"How about a chance to save Renee's?"
Oliver's heart sank at the mention of his mother.
Taking her hands off the table, Nami walked back to her seat and sat down.
"About a year into the war, the Themyscira picked up a distress signal while on patrol near the Talen System. One thing led to another, and a few days later we found your mother safe and sound in a shuttle trapped inside a subspace interphase eddy. We were able to pull her out before the eddy collapsed on itself.
"You were overjoyed, of course. But we were in the middle of a war, so you arranged for the Endurance to take your mother to Starbase 32, and from there the El’nar Ascendant would take her back to Earth, where you thought she would be safe. But the day before the El’nar Ascendant arrived, the Dominion took the station and massacred everyone on it, men, women, and children."
Oliver listened quietly as Nami spoke. His brows tightened and then relaxed before tightening again.
"How did she get trapped inside the eddy? Where is she now?"
"I don't know." Nami answered calmly. "We never figured that part out, and your mother said everything after she put you inside the escape pod and ejected it from the Wells was a blur to her. She didn't remember a thing."
She paused to drink from her cup of coffee.
"How long has it been since you saw your mother last time, Oliver? 27, 28 years? You loved her, Oliver. You loved her dearly. It broke you when you lost her, didn't it? It would have destroyed you if your grandparents hadn't brought you back to New York where you met Korra."
Leaning forward from her seat, she said, "But if you can stop the war from happening, Oliver, you will have a chance to find you mother and there won't be a war to take her away from you again. It's just a chance, but don't you want that chance? Don't you?!"
. . . . . .
::USS Themyscira, Near Nebula NG-407P::
Captain Nami Ishikawa walked through the corridor of her ship with confidence in her every step. Confidence, as she learned three decades ago, was the first and foremost quality of a leader who could inspire her crew to feats of greatness, and their mission in this happy and wretched time was nothing short of greatness.
She had learned that lesson from Oliver Antoninus Lee, the man who rescued her from the whips of the slavers, the man she stabbed in the gut so that he could save in death the Federation he had failed to save in life. And now that same man, or at least a version of him, sat in the brig of her ship, a ship he himself had once commanded. But that was a different time.
And together with him was Korra Ymir, who had shown her the meaning of strength, not merely of the body, but also of the spirit. She was fierce, she was exhilarating. She was the embodiment of courage and fortitude. She was her idol. But now she, too, sat in her brig.
Nami had not meant for any of this to happen. It was not her plan to travel this far back in time. The Fates, however, cared little for the plans of the mortal, as their wont. But as Oliver once said, it was unbecoming of a Starfleet officer to complain of the Fates.
What would he say now?
Korra sat on her bed - if you could call a slab of metal a bed - and groaned in frustration. Grabbing her dress uniform jacket, which she had used as a makeshift pillow the night before, the Marine flung it across the holding cell.
“I’m gonna kill you when we get back to the Arcadia.” A pause “If we get back to the Arcadia.”
“Of course, we will.” said Oliver as he laid on the bench across from Korra. “When has any of my plans ever failed?” A pause. “Not counting Amelix V. I literally had only two minutes and fifteen seconds to put a plan together, and that’s after inhaling the spores. So, everything considered, I’d still call it a half success.”
Korra couldn’t have rolled her eyes any harder. “Ugh, you and your hubris.”
“Not hubris. Confidence.” Oliver retorted with a small smirk.
“Then why are we still in the brig of that genocidal maniac, Mr. Confidence?”
Springing up from the bench and back on his feet, Oliver picked up his own uniform jacket and put it back on, but left it unzipped.
“The Arcadia can’t make a move until Ishikawa meets up with her partner, or we will never find out who he or she is.” he said. “Besides, as the great Arion of Betazed once said, ta’l nu saku’r, nui korhin el’nar.”
“‘Give yourself over to patience, and El’nar herself shall bow to you.’” Nami translated the Betazoid philosopher’s words as she approached the holding cell and paused before the forcefield that separated her from her captives.
“It was one of your favorite sayings.” she said to Oliver, “Good to know that it still is.”
“You . . .” Korra was about to give the other woman a piece of her mind when Oliver signaled her to stand down.
He then turned to Nami. Smiling smugly, he said, “Finally coming to your senses, Captain? Very well, I accept your surrender. Lower the forcefield and I’ll guarantee a fair trial for you and your crew.”
Nami raised an amused eyebrow before her features softened. Smiling wryly, she said, “It has been so long that I almost forgot how cocky you used to be. I do miss that you.”
Looking to the defiant Marine sitting on the bench, Nami let out a soft sigh. How losing the love of his life changed him, she thought to herself. Turning back to Oliver, she said, “I’ll let you go as soon as we fix our cloak. You can take one of the shuttles. Provided, of course, your crew are not so stupid as to try rescuing you before then.”
Korra snorted from her bench. “How kind of you.”
“It’s still not too late, Captain.” said Oliver, this time with unmistakable earnestness in his eyes. “You can still . . .”
Nami cut him off with a wave of her hand.
“I’m not here to listen to your self-righteous sermon, Oliver. I’m here to give you this.” said the Trill as she placed a small trinket in the oval receptacle next to the forcefield. She pressed a control, and blue transporter beams engulfed the object.
Oliver stepped over to where an identical receptacle was situated on the other side of the wall, and as soon as the trinket rematerialized, his brows tightened. For a few moments he just stood there, motionless.
Then he sighed, and the corner of his eyes twitched slightly as he picked up the trinket: two clear oblong crystals threaded together with a piece of frayed blue string. His eyes still fixed on the old necklace, he asked, “Where did you get it?”
“You mother had it when the Themyscira rescued her from the subspace eddy. After Starbase 32 was recovered from the Dominion, they found her among the other dead, still clinging onto it in her hand.”
Korra stood up from her bench and walked over to where Oliver was. She had known her best friend since they were kids, and she knew how much that necklace meant to him.
Oliver let out a wistful sigh as he felt Korra’s hand on his. He turned to the Marine, and a small, pained smile crossed his lips. “I made this for my mom when I was six. She called it her little lucky charm and wore it wherever she went.”
Turning back to Nami, he said, “Thank you.” A pause. “You said you found her in the Talen System . . .”
“You shouldn’t go look for her.” said Nami, “You mother is not the person you have always remembered her to be.”
The knot on Oliver’s brows tightened. “What are you talking about?”
Nami didn’t answer him. Looking to Marine next to him, she said, “Instead of dwelling in the past, you should hold onto those who are still with you.”
Silence lingered among them for a few moments before it was broken by Commander Hekoa’s voice through the intercom.
=/\= He’s here, Captain. =/\=
Nami tapped her combadge. “I’m on my way.”
With that she turned and headed to the exit. As the doors hissed opened, she turned around and looked at Korra, then Oliver.
“Stay away from Kelsa III, Oliver.” said the Trill before disappearing behind the closing doors.
Captain Nami Ishikawa
USS Themyscira NCC-85430
(NPC - Roger/Oliver)
Captain Oliver A. Lee
USS Arcadia NCC-89015
Captain Korra Ymir
Starfighter Squadron Leader, VMFA-31
USS Arcadia NCC-89015
(NPC - Roger/Oliver)