Previous Next

Green, Green, Orange, Red

Posted on Sat Mar 19th, 2022 @ 2:00pm by Lieutenant JG Shaille Levine & Lieutenant Veznia MD PSyD

Mission: Double Bind

Shaille sat cross legged on the snow, leaning forward, staring intently at the shield generator in front of her, or, more specifically, the blinking lights that were supposed to indicate that the unit was working correctly.

The blinking of the lights was rhythmic, almost hypnotic. Green. Green. Green. Green. Orange. Green. Green. Green. Orange. Green. Green. Green. Green. Red. Green. Green. Green.

"Still no comms?" she asked Veznia without looking at the Denobulan counselor who was her partner for this 'adventure'. "How much longer do you think the storm will last?"

Veznia shook her head. "Comms are still down." She paused. "As for this storm, who knows?" The Denobulan turned to face Shaille. "Any luck yet with the shield generators?" She could see the blinking lights, but wasn't entirely sure what it meant.

Shaille sighed. "The shield generator is working, thankfully, but I don't know if it'll stay that way or for how long." She motioned to the blinking light. "Green means it's functioning normally, orange means it's encountering an error and red... well..." She sighed again. "We don't want to keep seeing red. Red is bad."

Puffing up her face slightly, Veznia frowned. "This is why I don't volunteer for away missions." A hiss of static came from the communicator then quickly dissipated. "Damn it."

Green. Green. Green. Orange. Red. Red. Red. Green. Red.

Shaille's expression became concerned beneath her EV helmet. "I don't think the shield if going to hold," she said quietly. "If it fails, we may need to find somewhere to take shelter if we can't contact anyone."

Now Veznia puffed up enough to fill her helmet. The stress was real. "I just need to figure out how to boost the signal."

"It looks like the eye is coming our way, maybe the weather will clear enough for us to get a signal?" Shaille asked hopefully, glancing toward Veznia. Despite being unable to clearly see the Denobulan's face due to the EV suit, she knew the counselor was just as concerned as she was.

"Let's hope the shield generators stay in the green when the eye passes over." Veznia sounded bleak. "freezing to death is not my ideal way to leaving this life." She added.

"The EV suits should keep us protected," Shaille said quietly. "But it'll still be damn cold."

Green. Green. Orange. Red. Red. Red. Green.

Each red blink was lasting longer. "Keep trying the comms, see if we can get anyone."

Veznia was worried. She kept trying but wasn't getting anything, not even static. "Gahhhhh!" She exclaimed, slamming the communicator on the ground slightly. Suddenly, it hissed to life faintly. "Hello, can anyone read me? This is Lieutenant Veznia. Hello." The communicator cut out again.

Green. Orange. Green. Red. Red. Red. There was nothing but red, now not even a blinking light, a solid, angry red light. There was a moment where the shield flickered before failing completely and Shaille and Veznia both found themselves greeted with an icy blast of wind strong enough to almost knock them both off their feet.

"Damn it!" Shaille cursed loudly.

Veznia screamed an untranslatable Denobulan expletive as she tried to regain her footing. "Levine! Are you okay?" She called out, checking on her comrade.

"Grab me that hyperspanner," Shaille shouted over the roar of a wind that started to die down as she finished her words. "The eye is coming over. Our EV suits should easily withstand the cold, so long as they don't get damaged, but it's gonna get mighty cold mighty quick."

Quickly, Veznia searched for the instrument and passed it to her companion. There were tears welling in her eyes. She thought immediately about Denobula. "Here you go." She hurriedly passed the hyper spanner to Shaille.

A cold shiver ran down Shaille's spine as she grabbed the hyperspanner and yanked the panel away from the back of the shield generator, muttering a string of expletives as she worked quickly. "Keep trying the comms," she ordered anxiously. "If we can't get this back online before the next hit of the storm comes we may need to look for shelter."

Veznia was already on it, continuing her fruitless efforts. She restarted the communicator and as it turned back on it emitted a beep and then static hissed from the speaker. "Anyone in comm range. Our emitters are down. Anyone reading this. This is Lieutenants Veznia and Levine. We are without shields." She paused waiting for a response.

Though peripherally aware of the lack of response on the comms system, Shaille's primary focus was trying to get the shield generator back online. Finally, standing up, she delivered a sharp kick to the unit out of frustration, a kick that was met with a beep of protest before the green light flickered and the shield shimmered back into existence in front of them.

The shield made a notable difference as it blocked the wind once again. Veznia continued to try the comms. “Come in, this is Veznia and Levine. Anyone hearing this, please respond.” There was a visible relief in Veznia since the shield came back online.

Shaille sank back down onto the snow, resting her head against her knees for a moment as she just breathed with relief at the fact that the shields had come back up. The wind that had been whipping at them stopped as suddenly as it started. "I don't know how long it'll last," she said quietly, looking up at Veznia. "But at least it's up for now."

Vez nodded. "Still no responses on the comms." She furrowed her brow. "I just can't make it work. All I get is static." Frustration filled her voice.

"It's the storm," Shaille replied, her voice becoming calmer again as the light continued to blink green. "Once it passes comms should clear just in time for them to transport us back to the shuttles."

"Here's hoping." Veznia calmed further, seeing Shaille visibly relax as well. The stress wasn't gone, but it had subsided to an appropriate level.

Fighting back the anxiety at the precariousness of their situation, Shaille took a slow deep breath and waited a few moments. "What's the first thing you plan to do when we get back to the ship?" she asked, opting for small talk to try and distract them both.

"I want to put on a thick sweater, turn up the heat in my cabin, and read a book." Veznia said with a smile. "What about you?"

Shaille drew in a deep breath, tapping her fingers against her knee with each blip of the light. "Shower. A long hot shower. Then a second long hot shower. Then a huge steaming mug of hot chocolate and curl up on the couch with Koh and about a dozen blankets. Gods what I wouldn't give for the warmth of his fur right now! I know it's ridiculous, the EV suits are more than enough to protect us from these temperatures, but it really does feel like it's mind over matter here and the mind is winning. I'm utterly freezing!"

Listening to Shaille talk it occurred to Veznia that she had forgotten about her cremates who had paired off. "How are things with Koh, if you don't mind my asking?" She was fascinated by relationships, and often dreamed of being in one herself. Though she hadn't had that experience to this point in her life.

Shaille smiled, glad for the distraction and the warm thoughts of the one she loved. "We've had years to perfect our ways to annoy each other," she said, her voice light with laughter. "I think my mother is finally coming to terms with the fact that I won't be the source of any additional grandbabies. I guess it helps that being out here now communication is so much more limited, she's too busy making sure I'm eating, staying safe and not losing weight to fuss over that."

"Part of me always wished for an overbearing mom."Veznia said, smiling to herself. "Denobulan families don't allow much room for that kind of attention though. She had other husbands, and other families to look after as well."

There was a laugh and a shake of her head. "I have brothers. Several of them. I was the much longed for daughter that was supposed to be into all things pretty and princessy. Much to my mother's disappointment I ended up rough and tumble, but I think she always held out hope that I'd fall in love, settle down and have lots of grandbabies for her to dote on. Love, yes. Settle down, yes. Grandbabies?" She shook her head. "That's up to my brothers. I told her she already has a dozen grandkids, what does she want more for?"

Veznia smirked. “Maybe your mother has some Denobulan blood in her.” It was true, Denobulan’s were famed for their large family units.

Shaille laughed. "Possibly, who knows." She glanced up at Veznia. "What about your family? What was it like growing up in such an extensive family unit?"

“Surprisingly lonely.” Vez lamented. “Each of my parents had a number of spouses besides one another and because of that I have more siblings than I care to count.”Vez shook her head dismissively. “I couldn’t tell you if I have any nieces or nephews. I’m not close enough to any of my siblings know.”

There was a long moment of silence as that thought lingered in Shaille's mind. "I can't even begin to comprehend that kind of loneliness," she said quietly. "To be lonely in a crowd..." She shook her head. "I miss my brothers something fierce, I hate not being able to talk to them every day. I miss hearing about my nieces and nephews. I miss talking to them on subspace and seeing them grow up. Now it's mostly just random messages as Pathfinder permits."

There was another pause. "I'll tell you what, you want some nieces and nephews? I'll give you some of mine. One of my brothers has eight kids under ten. Ishmael was born just before we came to the Delta Quadrant. Then there's two sets of twins, and a set of triplets in there as well. You can totally have the triplets. After one night I'm quite sure you won't lament the lack of nieces and nephews after that. I'm pretty sure that Koh meeting my family made him rather glad that offspring just aren't on the agenda for us."

Veznia laughed slightly. "I'm not sure your brothers would be happy to have a strange Denobulan woman come to hangout with their kids." Her smile continued to grow.

Shaille grinned easily. "Trust me, with eight kids, they will both appreciate the break! Just make sure you get them to sign the contract stating that they will both return to collect said children, otherwise you might find yourself with a whole lot more baggage than bargained for!"

There was a moment of silence and then Veznia's commbadge chirped into life. The voice on the line was one of the sweetest sounds either of them had ever heard. "Team six, prepare for transport."


Previous Next