Summary: Douglas Gorrim captain on the NX-04 Ariane investigates a timely-wibberly thing.
Categories: Enterprise, Expanded Universes Characters: None
Chapters: 7 Completed: Yes
Word count: 9423 Read: 15290
Published: 22 Sep 2013 Updated: 23 Sep 2013
Written for the Forums Weekly Free Writes, revised for the September challenge and kindly Beta checked by Little Black Dog.
1. Chapter 1 - Backpfeifengesicht by FalseBill
2. Chapter 2 - Loss of Concentration by FalseBill
3. Chapter 3 - Under the Weather by FalseBill
4. Chapter 4 - I thought I would die, but was afraid I might not by FalseBill
5. Chapter 5 - 100 & Milestones by FalseBill
6. Chapter 6 - Class 101 by FalseBill
7. Chapter 7 - Legacies by FalseBill
Chapter 1 - Backpfeifengesicht by FalseBill
Backpfeifengesicht is a German word for a face in need of a slap.
“Captain, long-range sensors have detected a Class ‘M’ planetoid in a nearby system. I can’t detect any signs of civilization at this range, but I’m getting one weird power signature,” said Lieutenant James Comsox from the science station.
“Weird, how Lieutenant?” asked Captain Douglas Gorrim.
“Not sure if I can explain it Captain, but if I’m reading the sensors correctly, it seems to be affecting sub-space and the fabric time of time itself somehow,” answered James.
“A timely-wibberly thing. Here let me see,” said Douglas, who did not entirely believe his officer’s statement.
Douglas stood up from the captain’s chair and walked over to the science station. He looked into the viewer.
“Hmm, that is indeed wibberly weird. Looks like something best avoided to me, Lieutenant,” said Douglas.
“I would agree with you Captain, but the affected areas seem to be growing quite quickly,” said James
“In other words, it might soon affect the coalition shipping lanes in this sector?” asked Douglas.
“Affirmative, Captain. For all we know it might be some kind of Romulan super weapon just for that purpose,” said James.
“We best investigate then. Ensign Dubrovnik, send a coded message to sector control to explain our diversion from patrol. Lieutenant Hertford, set new course and engage at best possible warp, till we reach the edge of the phenomenon,” ordered Douglas.
“Yes, Captain,” said Cassandra Hertford from the helm station.
“Message sent, Captain,” confirmed Ensign Savio Dubrovnik from the communications station.
The deck plates vibrated slightly under the bridge crew’s feet as the ship banked and increased its warp speed. It took the Ariane less than twenty minutes to reach the edge of the mysterious phenomenon.
“Well Mister Comsox, we’re here now. Are you getting any more useful data from the sensors?” asked Douglas from the captain’s chair.
James was bent over the scanner viewer, trying to make sense of the readings. “Sorry Captain, I can’t add anything meaningful to my earlier report…no wait, just coming in now. I can detect an artificial construction on the northern continent of the third world, which seems to be the ground zero for the mysterious phenomenon. Now that is weird, stellar dating suggests the object is minus 250 years old, give or take a decade,” reported James.
“Another temporal cold war goodie, oh joy. It’s been a while since the cabal has tried anything on us. Mister Comsox, can we take the ship into the phenomenon without harm?” asked Douglas.
“Hard to say. In theory I don’t see why not,” answered James.
“That’s because you’re not a warp engineer,” said Commander Yu Ziyl as he stepped out of the lift.
“You’ve something to add Commander Ziyl?” asked Douglas.
“Yes, Captain. The warp engine isn’t reacting well to close proximity of that wave. We need to hold the Ariane back or the warp drive could explode,” said Yu.
“Then Lieutenant Hertford should hold the Ariane outside that thing. Mister Comsox, send a probe and see if we could traverse it by shuttle pod,” said Douglas.
“Acknowledged, Captain,” said James and Cassandra, almost in unison.
Douglas watched as a probe shot across the view screen and headed into the mysterious phenomenon.
“Reports are coming in now Captain. They would suggest we can traverse it, but it is an odd time, almost like inside a cabal helix base,” said James.
“Okay, grab your kit Mister Comsox, and you Mister Ziyl. I’ll see you in the shuttle bay. Let’s go,” said Douglas as he went to stand. Commander Ziyl interrupted him.
“Captain, with a thousand apologizes and my highest respect, I believe my place at this time is in Main Engineering to look after the warp engine and prevent it from exploding. Might I humbly suggest you take Colonel Helga Von Detrucker instead?” said Yu.
Douglas looked his chief engineer in the eye. “Well, if you don’t think you can leave your engine to another ship engineer?” asked Douglas.
“Not this time Captain,” replied Yu.
“Very well then. Mister Dubrovnik, please have Colonel Von Detrucker meet me and Mister Comsox in the shuttle bay,” said Douglas as he strode towards the lift.
James joined him and they both stepped through the lift doors into somewhere unexpected. “What the blazes? Captain, this isn’t the lift,” said James.
“No Lieutenant, this looks like one of the rooms of the Temporal Integrity Commission,” said Douglas.
“The what commission? How did we get here, Captain?” asked James, very confused by his new surroundings.
Suddenly the Captain and James’s scanners began to play an irritating tune.
“The Temporal Integrity Commission or T.I.C. for short, are the people who keep temporal terrorist and malcontents from damaging history,” said a female voice from behind them.
Both men turned round and came face to face with a short woman with blond hair and an over-accessorized jumpsuit.
“Hello, I’m here on behalf of the T.I.C. to tell you to turn back. The anomaly you’ve detected is a pollution of history. We will deal with it, just carry on with your normal patrol business and forget it. There is nothing you should see or learn at this point in history,” said the lady.
“Sorry, but I don’t take orders from mysterious women, who claim to be members of the T.I.C.,” said Douglas.
“My name has no relevance to you and just telling you could ruin history, so be good little Feds and go back to your patrol,” she said.
“Feds?” asked James.
“Are you going to do what I asked or not?” said the lady with a degree of veiled threat.
“Well, how can we refuse a pretty lady with such a pretty Backpfeifengesicht, right, James?” said Douglas.
“Yes, Captain,” said James. James turned his head to the captain and gave him a wink of understanding that the lady didn’t see.
“Good, I’ll return…” started the lady but the two officers pulled out their phase pistol and opened fire on her, rudely interrupting her.
“Glad you remembered that code word James,” said Douglas.
“Always thought it was appropriate for temporal enemies; they do have faces in need of a slap,” answered James.
Under the concentrated pistol fire the woman’s shape fuzzed and then changed into a giant caterpillar. It looked very angry.
“A Chilo!” said Douglas with shock, before adding, “Kill it, Lieutenant!” Both officers switched the pistols from stun to kill.
“Vermin, I shall destroy you for that. You cannot disrupt our plans with your crude weapons,” the Chilo thought at them with pure venom.
“What’s Mr. Angry Caterpillar’s problem, Captain?” asked James Comsox.
“That we exist, as far as I can tell,” answered Douglas.
The Chilo suddenly disappeared.
“Blast, I forgot about that, scatter to a wall, Lieutenant,” said Douglas as he dived for a wall to put his back up against.
Sadly the warning came too late for James and the Chilo reappeared behind him and engulfed him in an evil bear hug.
“Aargh!!” screamed James.
Douglas fired his phase pistol at the Chilo again, but it seemed to have no effect on the monstrous caterpillar. “Damn amour, hang on Lieutenant,” called Douglas as he looked round for inspiration to hurt the creature.
“One less vermin,” the creature suddenly thought. Then it dropped James’s broken body to the floor.
“You will pay for that, Monster,” said Douglas. The creature vanished. Douglas threw himself across the room towards the door, hoping that it would open. It didn’t and Douglas banged himself hard against the door.
The Chilo suddenly reappeared, right in front of him. As the monstrous caterpillar towered over the downed captain it thought in a very loud and very clear way at Douglas. “Now you will die, Vermin!”
As Douglas looked up, he thought, yes Chilo are indeed a load of Backpfeifengesicht.
Chapter 2 - Loss of Concentration by FalseBill
Captain Douglas Gorrim lay dazed and confused before the Chilo. As he gathered his sense he noticed the Chilo staring at him. Probably trying to assess whether or not I’m unconscious, and whether or not to kill me, Douglas thought. He seized on the Chilo’s momentary loss of concentration. Douglas realized that the inside of the mouth wasn’t amour plated as it leaned down to bite him. Douglas shoved his phase pistol into the creature’s mouth and pulled the trigger. He saw the phase beam ricochet around the inside of the Chilo’s head and then its eyes were backlit. It then collapsed dead on top of him.
Douglas collapsed back against the door and pushed the monstrous caterpillar creature off him. Then he took a deep breath and sighed with relief.
He uneasily stood up and walked over to the body of his ex-science officer, James Comsox. The Chilo had very effectively crushed him to death. So Douglas did the three simple things he could do. He turned James over and put him in a more dignified position, closed James’s eyes for the final time and said a prayer to any god that would listen for a bright life destroyed.
Douglas recalled so many moments with his science officer, his excitement at the smallest discovery, the way he kept submitting science papers even after the start of the war with the Romulans.
“So we didn’t forget once we won, Captain we are explorers, not soldiers.” That had been what James had said so often.
Deep down Douglas had been glad of it. It had given him hope in the darkest hour that tomorrow would be brighter. Now that bright future had sent a monster to kill him for just being human. It wasn’t fair, thought Douglas.
Then a second Chilo hit Douglas from behind and send him flying across the floor. “You will die in pain, Vermin for daring to kill a Chilo,” was the angry telepathic message.
Douglas felt for his pistol and saw that he had put it down by James’s body when he had moved him. The Chilo spotted the weapon and vanished.
Douglas could see the trap: he needed to get the weapon, but the Chilo would appear behind him the second he moved. Then the Chilo appeared again at the same spot. It seemed confused that he hadn’t moved for the weapon.
“Fear me, Vermin,” it said telepathically as the Chilo advanced on him.
His scanner started to play that annoying tune again to indicate it had detected a Chilo bio-signature.
Fat lot of use you are now… thought Douglas and then he had an inspiration.
He grabbed his scanner and activated its self-destruct system. Taking careful aim, he threw it at the Chilo’s mouth. Sadly his aim was still rubbish and the scanner exploded to the left of the Chilo’s head, but clearly a fear reaction made it vanish again.
Not wasting his second chance, he dived for James’s body and the phase pistol. Just as he reached the pistol the Chilo reappeared and it stamped down on the pistol and Douglas’s hand, pinning both the pistol and his hand to the floor.
“Aargh!” Douglas screamed in pain.
“Die,” was the simple telepathic message.
The Chilo leaned in to bite and Douglas saw James’s pistol was within reach of his free hand. He grabbed it and shoved it into this Chilo’s mouth and pulled the trigger just as the Chilo tried to bite, with a result that it bit the pistol in half.
Douglas screamed as the exploding pistol took the Chilo’s head off, along with three of his fingers on his left hand.
The Chilo’s headless body collapsed to the floor, thus freeing Douglas’s other hand. In pain he grabbed his first aid kit and with his badly bruised right hand tried to find something to stem the bleeding and pain in his left hand. He thankfully found some strong painkillers and injected himself. For a moment his concentration wandered as the painkillers made everything slightly mellow and yellow.
Then the pain in his hand brought him back; he found some basic bandages and he was sure he should be able to do something with the bandages, but couldn’t think how. Pesky painkillers, he thought.
Then with a laugh he remembered his phase pistol; on the kill setting it would cauterize wounds. He picked up the pistol, and checking the setting he shot off a quick beam at his bleeding hand. It indeed cauterized the worst three of his fingers.
But even through the painkillers that stung a lot, he thought.
Looking at the other finger and thumb, he decided they didn’t need such drastic action, so he just applied a load of anti-septic cream and then bandaged up the mess of his left hand.
He gathered up the pistol and scanner, and put everything but the pistol into his jumpsuit pockets.
Then slightly unsteady on his feet he made his way to the now opened door. With caution he set off to explore the T.I.C. headquarters, looking for a proper medic and also a way to get back to the Ariane.
Chapter 3 - Under the Weather by FalseBill
Captain Douglas Gorrim leaned on the wall for support. The T.I.C. building was a maze, and unfortunately the painkillers he had taken were impeding his ability to think straight. He been wandering around for some time, his sense of time screwed up as well as his sense of direction. He had not seen anybody, either human or Chilo, since he left the first room.
What am I doing? he thought to himself. I’m bug hunting, in the future, another part of his mind replied with uncharacteristic giggles. Douglas shook his head to try and clear it. He had no food or water, so he needed to find somebody, or the canteen or better still the sick bay soon.
He pushed himself off the wall and stumbled down the corridor. His head swam with nausea and his steps were uneven and very unsteady. He knew that his steps were heavy and loud and that he should try to be quiet but the injuries acquired in his earlier fight with the Chilo meant he wasn’t a hundred percent. He was indeed well under the weather and normally when he felt like this he’d be crawling towards the nearest medic. However, thanks to the Chilo’s temporal intervention that wasn’t an option.
Douglas reached a corridor crossroads. They all looked very much a like to him, so he stood and tried to listen for anything that seemed out of place. However the corridors were ever so silent. Douglas needed to make a decision but as his head swam, he knew he hadn’t a clue what to do next. He sunk down to his knees and tried to get himself back on to a level base. Then he heard it, something that sounded a lot like metal hitting another metal object from somewhere down the right corridor. The sound felt like an explosion inside his skull.
With some unknown reserve of strength from deep within, he pushed himself up to his feet and staggered down the corridor to the right, towards the direction of the sound.
The corridor seemed to stretch onwards in front of him, and he was forced to lean against the wall to move down the corridor.
He didn’t see the door in the wall till he fell through it. As he lay on the floor of this new room, struggling to stand up, he heard someone say: “Please stated the nature of the medical emergency; hello anyone?”
“Here,” croaked Douglas.
A balding man in a doctor’s coat appeared over Douglas.
“Yes you look like a medical emergency,” he said.
Chapter 4 - I thought I would die, but was afraid I might not by FalseBill
“I though I would die, but was afraid I might not while I was wandering those corridors,” said Douglas.
“A likely side effect of over doing those early pain killers; you really should have stuck to the recommend amount,” said the emergency medical hologram, known simply as the Doctor.
The Doctor was currently treating and trying to repair the worst of the injuries to Douglas’s left hand.
“When those monstrous caterpillars came in here and started to try and hack into my program, I had the exactly the same thought,” said the Doctor.
“Why did they want to hack into your program?” asked Douglas.
“Not sure, something about trying to get me to inject Kathryn Janeway with a solution that would allow them to use her to seduce a Krenim called Annorax and get hold of his temporal weapon ship.”
“Sounds like an overly complicated but nasty plan,” said Douglas.
“Ironically, the moral deadlock safeguards that Kathryn herself added to my program in the past prevented them from succeeding,” answered the Doctor.
“Speaking of the past, might I suggest in future, or hopefully in your case in history, you don’t hold the phase pistol when the monstrous caterpillar bites into it?” said the Doctor.
“I feel that is very sound advice, Doctor,” replied Douglas.
The Doctor put down the strange medical device and picked up another one, which he then ran over the damaged hand.
“That other counter shot I gave you should have taken effect by now, plus the dermal tissue regenerator does seem to be doing the trick. Anyway, I trust you’re feeling a lot better now?” asked the Doctor.
“Yes Doctor, the yellow tint to the world has gone now along with the nausea. Thank you,” replied Douglas.
“It’s so nice to have a grateful Starfleet captain to work on; so many of your successors aren’t prepared to listen to medical advice or even be grateful when you remove the alien devices from them,” said the Doctor.
“Given how I felt when I fell into your sickbay, I’m happy for any sentient computer program avatar to patch me up and tell me some common sense,” said Douglas.
Douglas had been a little out of it when the EMH Doctor had first begun helping him to fully understand a quarter of what the Doctor had said at the time.
“Flex your left hand,” said the Doctor.
Gingerly Douglas flexed his left hand and while it was still sore, it was at least fully useable again.
“That’s the business, Doctor,” said Douglas.
“Well it’s what some of the finest minds of my generation created me to do,” replied the EMH.
The Doctor continued, “Normally, I would suggest taking a day or two rest and some light exercise for that hand. However given that the base seems to be occupied by a hostile force…”
“The Chilo,” interrupted Douglas.
“The Chilo, as you call them, we--by which unfortunately I mean you--need to defeat them ASAP, before they carry out their obviously hostile plan.”
“Why can’t you help or at least call for outside help?” asked Douglas.
“Because I was here for a meeting about a temporal intervention on Voyager when the Chilo attacked. While they couldn’t hack me, they did take away my mobile emitter and left me shut off. Only your entry into this sickbay with distressed life-sign, auto-fired me up again,” answered the Doctor.
“Okay that sort of makes sense, so why can’t you help me get a distress message out now?” asked Douglas.
“Because I’m an Emergency Medical Hologram not an Emergency Engineer Hologram, plus from what little I can gather from the T.I.C. Mainframe, the Chilo have activated the quarantine protocol, so nothing can get in or out without the T.I.C. commander’s direct authorization. I’ll run a low level scan now to if I can find out anything useful for you,” answered the Doctor.
“So I’ve got to quickly break out of the T.I.C. quarantine field and summon the military by myself with obsolete equipment and tactics?” said Douglas.
“Actually, I’m sorry to say this but I doubt you’ll be able to break out of the T.I.C. quarantine field with anything that is currently in this building. Plus, these rising energy fields the scanner is now reporting might suggest that the Chilo are actually close to completing something, so I would suggest your best bet is to find out where the rest of the T.I.C. staff are being held and re-take the base with them,” said the Doctor.
“Of course the Chilo could have re-programmed you to say that to stop me trying,” said Douglas.
“That is of course a risk you’ll need to be aware of,” said the Doctor.
“What to do? What to do?” asked Douglas aloud.
“Sorry, the emergency command hologram is not available, so you on your own for this due to the program tampering risk,” said the Doctor.
“Great. Anything else to add to my joy?” asked Douglas.
“Well, judging by these field gains on the medical scanner, I suggest you only have 100 minutes to stop the Chilo,” said the Doctor.
“I think I might die on this mission, but I more afraid I might not save history,” said Douglas.
“You’re a Starfleet captain, miracles are what you are renowned for,” said the Doctor.
“Okay where are the prison cells and armory?” Douglas asked.
Chapter 5 - 100 & Milestones by FalseBill
Douglas quickly got the Doctor to call up a base map, which he then copied into his jotter notepad. Douglas decided not to tell the hologram his crude plan, in case the Chilo had indeed tamped with his program.
Then Douglas hurried to the armory. Thankfully for him all the security systems had been left off by the Chilo. He quickly found an MACO rifle, some grenades and body amour that he knew how to use.
Then Douglas hit the prison cells on level 100. The grenades let him take out the two Chilo guards. He quickly opened all the cells.
Captain Douglas Gorrim leveled the MACO rifle; it bothered him that no one had emerged from the holding cells when he had deactivated the force fields.
Slowly he began to advance to check inside the cells, but he stopped as he had a gut feeling something wasn’t quite right. He tried to see what about the scene before him was not as it seemed at first glance. He looked around again and then he looked at the two Chilo he had just killed with a grenade.
The two Chilo lay very still and yet it seemed to Douglas as if it had been almost too easy.
‘Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth Douglas,’ he chimed himself.
Then his conscious mind caught up with his gut feeling and he realized what the trap was.
One of the Chilo had a sash on, the tail end of which was hanging parallel to the deck indicating there was no gravity in that passageway deck section. Though both of the Chilo clearly had scars on their exo- amour the only way either of them was lying on that deck was they were holding themselves down to the deck.
Clearly they had hoped Douglas would step over them and between the two gravity plates and the sudden loss of gravity would leave him vulnerable for a few seconds at which point the two Chilo, using their multiple arms and mandibles, would make short work of him.
Douglas tried to act naturally and not give away that he had seen through their trap. He stepped forward as if he was going to head to the cells and then without warning he tossed another grenade at the pair of Chilo. The less wounded one immediately disappeared, while the clearly more injured Chilo tried to scamper away but it was hampered by the lack of gravity. Douglas put a shot in its general direction as he dived back behind the security console bench for cover from the grenade.
The second grenade clearly was more powerful than the first one and the whole room seemed to shake as it went off. Douglas cautiously looked out from behind the console, however the rank smell had already told him that one of the Chilo was indeed dead before he even saw the various bits of it floating in zero gee.
‘Now where did that other one go?’ he thought.
Douglas looked around but he still couldn’t see the other Chilo or any other obvious ambush locations. He quickly found the gravity controls and restored the normal one gee gravity to the cells and the access corridor, which should now allow any other prisoners to escape.
Then suddenly Douglas recalled seeing the sash that the other Chilo had been wearing before. It was from the very first time he had ever met a Chilo. Then his mind’s eye suddenly took him back to his final summer at home before he joined the Starfleet science program.
He had spent that summer at home alone. His brothers and sister had gone with their parents on a summer holiday to New Berlin. The reason he had been left alone was to work on his science submission for consideration to Starfleet Academy and also to mind the family house.
One night during a late session working on his submission paper, Douglas had sat alone in his room, while trying not to think about his latest attempt at a relationship with a girl that had gone so wrong. That was when he heard a large bang from nearby. He remembered looking at the clock to check the time, in case it was just the neighbors kids again but it was past eleven pm, so for once it was not likely to be the neighbors.
He could recall that smelt that very odd foul smell. So full of the swagger of youth he had grabbed his cricket bat from the cupboard and crept downstairs to investigate.
As Douglas went down the stairs he heard yet more crashing sounds; it was as if a large animal or the world’s worst burglar was in the house. The foul smell just got more rancid as he reached the bottom of the stairs.
That was when he saw the source of the noise; it was a large monstrous caterpillar with transparent skin and its inside looked to be full of rainbows. The thing was much larger than an average man with mandibles to cower even a Xindi - Insectoid.
Douglas didn’t know what to make of this beast but he decided that his cricket bat wasn’t likely to be of much use against its thick exo-amour, even if it did look scared. Then he had seen the sash that the creature had been wearing.
‘Maybe it’s an alien burglar or perhaps it’s an escaped zoo exhibit. Anyway this is a job for the cops not me,’ Douglas had thought.
So Douglas as quickly and silently as he could, made his way over to the main video-telephone and then he tapped the emergency services contact button but strangely nothing happened.
‘Vermin, I’m smarter than you and no aid will come to your assistance. You shall die now and the Chilo will succeed,’ he had heard in his head via what he guessed was a telepathic message.
“What are you? Why do I need to die now?” Douglas had asked.
“I shall stop you now, while you are smaller and weaker,” was the only reply that came from the creature.
Then the Chilo had lunged forward at Douglas. In the nick of time Douglas dived under the table and out of the way. The Chilo had smacked head first into the wall and while it was semi stunned Douglas took a chance and smashed his prized cricket bat over the creature’s head. The hard wood had split into multiple pieces and one of the larger pieces went into the creature’s compound eye. It roared in pain and it pulled the splinter out, but a dark liquid started to ooze out of the wound.
“Now you’ll suffer a long drawn out painful death for that,” it screamed telepathically at Douglas.
“You started the fight, thus don’t blame me if you’ve injured yourself,” Douglas cried over his shoulder as he ran for the front door.
“No, you started it by existing,” replied the Chilo.
Douglas heard the scraping of the creature‘s many legs as it chased after him. Douglas quickly reached the front door and hit the unlock mechanism. The computer beeped as it acknowledged the order to unlock the door.
“Hurry up, hurry up! Unlock,” Douglas shouted at the computer.
“Working,” was all the computer replied.
Douglas turned in time to see the Chilo arriving at full speed, so once again he dove out of the creature’s way. The Chilo’s own weight and bulk took it straight through the front door, which sent shards of plastic flying through in the air in all directions. A few of the shards nicked Douglas as they flew past him.
Douglas looked out though the hole as the computer reported “A type 404 error has occurred while un-locking the door.”
“What Computer? You say it’s an unknown error if a monster bug’s destroying the door while you are unlocking it. Fancy that,” Douglas had quibbled at it.
The Chilo was picking itself up and Douglas didn’t fancy trying to get past that monster, which was currently on his parents’ front lawn. So Douglas ran back into the house and towards the back door.
Douglas got to the kitchen where he spotted the old fire extinguisher that lived there. It was big and heavy and so Douglas grabbed it as a makeshift weapon. Then he resumed running towards the back door. Just as he was about to reach it the Chilo appeared out of thin air in front of him.
“Jobs to do,” it thought at Douglas.
Then as the Chilo reared up to its full height in front of him, Douglas felt the blood drain from his face. As the monster swung for him, Douglas by some instinct tried to use the fire extinguisher to block the attack. However the Chilo was much stronger than Douglas and so the Chilo knocked it aside. As Douglas started to retain his balance, the Chilo seized the opportunity and dug its mandibles into his left shoulder.
Douglas swore at the creature and smashed it with the fire extinguisher, but the creature still held on.
“Out of time Vermin. Time to die,” it thought aloud at Douglas.
In sheer desperation Douglas sprayed the creature with the contents of the fire extinguisher, like he had seen done a thousand times in his eldest brother’s old action movies.
“Cold!” screamed the creature telepathically, clearly in pain.
The Chilo released it grip on Douglas’s shoulder as it tried to escape the cold, but Douglas wasn’t going to let up now. He used the extinguisher to drive the creature back. That’s when a male and a female police officer ran in and the lead officer said, “What the…? Police. Put your object manipulators in the air and get on the floor or we will shoot.”
“You will die also, vermin. The Chilo shall destroy you all,” the Chilo had replied.
“Okay that is clearly hostile, stun it,” called the male cop.
Douglas watched as the two police officers open fired, but all three were shocked as the cops stun rifles seem not to affect the creature.
“Laura, get the kid out of here and get the MACO marines down here ASAP,” called the older male cop.
“With me kid,” the female cop had said. Then she had virtually manhandled him out while she was calling coded messages into her communicator.
Then just as they got outside, the first cop came flying through the front window in a shower of glass. He was battered, beaten and bleeding heavily. Then the Chilo suddenly appeared out of thin air in front of Douglas and Laura and now it looked even angrier.
“No escape, you will die today vermin,” it thought at them.
Laura the female cop opened fire but her weapon hits seem to have no effect. The Chilo then used its legs to knock her flying into a nearby tree and out of its way. As it knocked her aside the weapon broke and Douglas caught a bit of it. Then the Chilo advanced towards Douglas.
Douglas looked at the broken weapon part in his hand-- it was the weapon coolant component--and suddenly Douglas had inspiration from an old school experiment. Douglas now had a plan and so he ran towards the neighbors’ koi pond.
Douglas was nearly at the pond when the Chilo phased in front of him, but the Chilo appeared on top of water rather than on the ground as it had expected. With a splash the Chilo fell into the pond and Douglas quickly threw the coolant component into the pond with it. There was a large popping sound, with the result that the water and the soaked Chilo were flash-frozen.
Douglas sunk down to his knees and tried to catch his breath. Once Douglas had finally caught his breath, then he went to check on Laura the cop. Douglas was pleased that despite some bruising she was still okay. The male cop wasn’t in a good condition but Douglas did some basic first aid on him as he tried to stem the blood loss till the armed Police and MACO reserves arrived on the scene with proper medics. Once they had stabilized everybody they got them all shipped off to the nearest hospital.
A few days later the local Chief of Police had visited Douglas in hospital and had said, “I believe your story kid. No-one, not even the Vulcans, seem to know what that creature was. So we’ve got no idea why it attacked you but don’t worry about killing it, as far as we’re all concerned it was an open and shut case of self defense for yourself and the other cops, if not the whole city.”
After a moment’s break to let Douglas take his words in, the chief of police had added, “Also the MACO Major said he will be stopping by, as he reckons if you hadn’t flash-frozen the bug it could have taken the whole English division of MACOs to stop that creature with our normal weapons, most likely with some horrific casualty levels. So he wants to shake your hand for saving his team from having to fire fight with Mister Bug.”
“Thank you, sir. I guess if I want any further answers on this creature, I need to get into the Starfleet science division and go look for them myself,” said Douglas.
“I guess so, kid. Good luck with that,” said the chief of police.
That had been Douglas’s first true milestone. It had motivated Douglas to get into Starfleet science division and so he did the extra training to try and get a science officer post on an NX cruiser.
“Captain Gorrim?” asked a red-haired woman.
Douglas snapped out of his memory and back to the current moment in the T.I.C. building.
“Sorry I’m not sure what happened there,” he said to the red-haired woman in the blue uniform who was now standing in front of him.
“Temporal adjustment,” said a gentlemen in an all black and silver jumpsuit uniform who stepped into his field of vision from another cell before adding, “I’m Daniels of the T.I.C., cheers for the rescue.”
“I’m Captain Lily Fitzroy of Starfleet, and cheers for zapping the guard bugs,” said the woman.
“You’re both welcome but I’m sorry, what’s a Temporal Adjustment when it’s at home?” asked Douglas.
“Well to use the example of what I think just happened, it is when a Chilo goes back in time to bump you off in the past when you’re weaker, rather than fight you right now; however the forces of history sometimes just adjust events to counter the incursion, but while the attempt to alter the past is going on the person from the relative present involved gets stuck for a moment in the new event memory as it forms,” answered Daniels.
Suddenly a large Klingon male stepped from another cell.
“Well done, Captain, you’re clearly an expert bug hunter. Let us avenge ourselves together upon these Chilo,” said the Klingon.
Chapter 6 - Class 101 by FalseBill
After a quick round of introductions between the Chilo prisoners, the one in the black and silver uniform, a T.I.C. agent called Daniels, led the small party of captains down a corridor into a room marked Class 101.
“Back to basics, the irony,” said Daniels.
“What are you on about, Human?” demanded Mortas the Klingon captain.
“Class 101, this is the room where T.I.C. agents learn about the basics of time travel and how to maintain temporal integrity, are all taught here. Anyway jobs to do,” said Daniels.
“So?” said Mortas.
“So it is clear Mr. Klingon, that if we’re going to re-take the T.I.C. headquarters from the Chilo force, we need to go back to our basic training,” said Captain Lily Fitzroy.
“Ha, ha, puny human female, I’m a glorious Klingon warrior of the house of Kozaga; all I need is my bat’leth,” replied Mortas.
“Enough,” snapped Captain Douglas Gorrim.
Silence fell over the room. Douglas waited till the other three had turned to look at him, before he continued, “Just to remind everybody, the Chilo want to erase us all and our civilization from history.”
“These dishonorable Ptarks, I shall strike them all down,” injected Mortas.
“With just your bare hands?” asked Lily.
“If no other weapons are available, then yes I shall just use my bare hands,” said Mortas.
‘Did the Chilo that captured you hit you so hard that you’ve forgotten how thick their exo-amour is?” asked Lily.
“You dare! You a mere human woman, you dare to imply that I’m a fool? I was only captured by their dishonorable tricks,” said Mortas.
“No Mortas, Captain Lily is in her own unique way trying to remind you of the old adage ‘Don’t lose a war to win a battle,’” said Douglas.
“Thank you, Douglas. Maybe Mortas we could keep our righteous anger and hatred focused on the Chilo rather than each other?” suggested Lily.
“Fine, we shall destroy the Chilo first, then settle any of our outstanding personal scores,” said Mortas.
“Good. Now Mister Daniels do you want to go back to Chilo temporal terrorism 101 lesson and tell us what those caterpillars are actually up to this time?” asked Douglas.
“Wait, what do you mean this time?” asked Lily.
“Now human woman, you are the fool! Since I was big enough to hold a bat’leth, I’ve heard the ancient Klingon warriors tell stories of these Chilo and their various attempts to wipe out the great Klingon civilization by removing all our key historic greats, our finest warriors and leaders with the aim of weakening the Klingon Empire enough that they can wipe us from history,” said Mortas.
“A bit like the Suliban Cabal then?” asked Lily
“Much worse. The mysterious Cabal Master who just wants to change the 27th century balance of power after the milky-way galactic invasion by the sphere-builders. While the Chilo do detest all other forms of life and thus their wish is to erase you all and then destroy your universe from ever having been,” said Daniels.
“Though they’re not quite powerful enough to do that mainly due to the T.I.C. strength, so they’re always trying to weaken the T.I.C. by key strikes against non-obvious targets in our past,” said Douglas.
“That all might be well and good human, but what part of this explains that your base is now overrun by them?” asked Mortas.
“Could I remind you all that we’re on the clock? Indeed I think we have less than thirty minutes left to try and stop this Chilo plan,” said Douglas.
“Indeed less talk and more action is what is needed,” agreed Mortas.
“We all want to stop the Chilo but to paraphrase, the great human warrior Sun Tzu said ‘Know yourself and know your enemies and the battle is won’,” said Lily.
“Thank you, Lily. Yes we’ve indeed got jobs to do. The Chilo have built three structures, the first in 2160, another in 2240 and the third in 2320. You were all removed from your ships when you accidentally discovered the structure. Perhaps as a delaying tactic to your crews, so that they can complete their grand objective without interference, while your crews are looking for you,” said Daniels.
“They’re without honor; if they wished to fight us, they should of have met us in the field of battle, face to face and not sneaking around like Romulans,” said Mortas.
Daniels walked over to the nearest wall and traced a strange pattern on it with his finger.
Daniels then put his arm straight through the wall. When he pulled his arm back he held in his hand two ‘C’ shaped objects. Daniels then tossed them over to Lily and Douglas. The Starfleet captains both caught the objects and looked quizzically at them.
“Those are 31st Century weapons, a sort of grandson of the phase pistol,” said Daniels in response to Douglas and Lily’s unanswered questions. Both Starfleet captains continued to study the weapons.
“What about me? Where is my weapon?” demanded Mortas.
“Here,” said Daniels as he reached into the wall and yet produced another of the ‘C’ phase grandson devices plus a bat’leth for Mortas.
Mortas took the ‘C’ weapon and the bat’leth. Mortas took a test swing of the bat’leth. “Yes it’s perfectly balanced. Now these Chilo shall pay,” stated Mortas.
“Mortas, in answer to your earlier question about how the Chilo took over this T.I.C. base: Yesterday the T.I.C. temporal scanners detected something in the 26th Century of Chilo origin floating near Starbase 39 Sierra. Naturally the T.I.C. impounded it to prevent temporal contamination from occurring, however once it was inside the T.I.C. base, the object released a knockout gas. Once all T.I.C. base personnel were out cold the Chilo poured out, killing most of the base staff. Anyway, jobs to do,” said Daniels.
Daniels turned to lead the group out of the room but as soon as his back was turned, Douglas threw the useless ‘C’ type weapon at the back of Daniels’s head. It hit home and was enough to break the Chilo disguised as Daniels illusion. Douglas then tossed Lily James’s phase pistol and leveled the acquired MACO rifle at the Chilo. In unison both Starfleet captains opened fire on the Chilo.
“Die Vermin,” thought the Chilo telepathically at the group.
“Today is a good day to die,” shouted Mortas as he also chucked his useless ‘C’ shaped weapon at the Chilo, then with his bat’leth held high he charged at the Chilo seeking to strike at the Chilo.
Sadly the bat’leth made no real dent in the Chilo exo-amour. The Chilo easily knocked the Klingon to the ground while Douglas continued to focus his phase pistol fire at it.
“You shall die now,” though the Chilo at the group.
The Chilo move to attack the Klingon on the ground. Lily ceased fire and instead charged at the Chilo, launching a flying kick at it. All that seem to happen was that Lily bounced off the Chilo but her attack did in fact unbalance the Chilo slightly and while it was off Douglas spotted an old crack in its Chilo exo-amour and so focused his rifle fire on the crack.
The Chilo exo-amour crack began to ooze and the Chilo disappeared from sight. Both Douglas and Mortas had enough experience to know to throw themselves towards the nearest room walls, to stop the Chilo from reappearing behind them. Lily took a few more seconds to catch the hint but she soon joined them with her back against the nearest wall. The three captains looked at each other after a moment when the Chilo didn’t reappear.
Douglas asked, “Run?”
“Withdraw,” agreed Mortas.
The three captains fled the room together, seeking another room in the T.I.C base to regroup in. As they ran Lily asked, “How did you know?”
“Never trust anyone who says jobs to do when the Chilo are around,” replied Douglas.
Chapter 7 - Legacies by FalseBill
The wounded Chilo reappeared in the T.I.C. main assembly hall. Where there were over fifty other Chilo. Each of the Chilo moved around a large conical pyramid device, which stood in the centre of the room. At the front of the hall was sat a very large Chilo inside a glass chamber. The wounded Chilo looked at the large Chilo.
From inside its special glass chamber the lead Chilo thought, “Jobs to do.”
“Jobs to do,” the wounded Chilo agreed telepathically.
Then the wounded Chilo joined the others working around the large conical pyramid device. The leader Chilo watched from inside his glass chamber. The master plan to destroy this particular universe had been his idea. So with this Chilo taskforce and great care to ensure that the Chilo ancient enemies hadn’t seen their infiltration into this universe, he set the bait for the humans’ Temporal Integrity Commission. They had taken it so easily and brought the master device into their own headquarters thus helping to hide the Chilo temporal signature beneath the T.I.C. own temporal signature. This clearly kept the Chilos’ ancient enemies fooled.
The only problem left now was that three of the vermin were lose and the lead one had already taken down several of his Chilo kin. He indicated to two of his other lieutenants to go out and hunt down those vermin. The lead Chilo didn’t understand how this particular vermin was a threat to his plans. After all it had no major legacy or temporal impact and yet somehow this was one was becoming a threat to his plan.
The trio of captains had accidentally chanced across the building environmental control room, to which Captain Lily Fitzroy was currently guarding the door with a phase pistol. While inside the Klingon captain Mortas and the Pre-Federation Starfleet captain Douglas Gorrim were trying desperately to hack into the computer mainframe, but they weren’t having all that much luck. They had run out of room 101 once they had realized the Chilo had gone most likely to bring back reinforcements.
“Useless system,” shouted Mortas.
“If it was useless, we would’ve hacked in already,” answered Douglas.
The Klingon and human captain kept on trying different tricks and ideas. Both of them were all too aware time was running out for them to stop the Chilo. Suddenly a screen change and a beep came from the computer console.
“Yes, I’ve managed to get the base map and life signs up,” said Douglas.
Mortas and Lily came over to look at the console’s display with Douglas.
“So those Ptack Chilo are all gathered in one room. It’s a perfect opportunity to strike,” said Mortas.
“Well it would be, if we could harm them fast enough,” said Lily.
Douglas spotted something new appear on the screen map.
“Now that is interesting,” said Douglas.
“What? Oh, you mean all those human life signs that are now appearing in the foyer?” asked Lily.
“Yes, clearly a local assault team has broken in and will now storm the building gloriously in the next fifteen minutes,” said Mortas with a smile.
“I wonder how they managed to beat the quarantine field. Guess that it’s not important but what is a real shame is that according to my scanner the raising power levels will hit projected maximum levels in five minutes,” said Douglas.
“Is there anything we can do to help delay the Chilo?” asked Lily.
“There must be. Yes we must strike at the Chilo now to delay them, perhaps a glorious last stand to distract them?” suggested Mortas.
Douglas shook his head and said: “Only real cold will slow down the Chilo…”
“We control the environmental station’s basic functions,” interrupted Lily.
“Indeed, the actual building temperature is a non-locked command path,” said Mortas.
The three captains looked at each other and all smiled in unison.
“Well D’oh! Douglas,” said Douglas to himself as he face palmed his own face.
“Let us freeze ourselves some bugs,” said Lily.
Mortas ran over to another console in the room and typed in commands to change the building default temperature down to sub-artic levels.
“They say revenge is best served cold. Well my revenge this day will indeed be served cold,” said Mortas.
“Let’s make sure the Chilo can’t change that,” said Lily.
Mortas stepped away from the console as Lily focused her pistol on the console and opened fire. After a moment of concentrated fire the console exploded in flames and all the other environmental stations went dark.
“Human smash!” said Lily.
Lily and Mortas laughed at the joke. Douglas just gave them both a funny look as he wondered if the Hulk comic was popular with Klingons in the future.
“Glad you’re both enjoying yourself but we’ve got two problems. A) As it about to become freezing, might I make a suggestion that we locate and raid the quartermaster’s office for arctic survival gear. B) The Chilo device still seems to be building up to activation…
A Chilo phasing into the room interrupted Douglas.
“And C) There is an active Chilo in the room,” said Douglas.
“Cold not stop us, you will die along with the Preservers,” though the Chilo.
“Then today is a good day to die,” said Mortas.
Mortas raised the Bat’leth. Lily opened fire with the phase pistol while Douglas fired the MACO rifle but the cold and low power levels meant the energy weapons just sparked one final time and failed to produce an energy beam.
“Talk of lousy timing,” said Douglas.
Lily threw the pistol at the Chilo; by sheer chance rather than careful aim, it hit the Chilo square in the eye.
The Chilo cried in pain and the momentary distraction was enough to allow Mortas to drive the edge of his acquired bat’leth in and crack open the Chilo exo-amour.
In real pain the Chilo knocked the Klingon and his bat’leth aside and they went crashing to the floor. As the Chilo now thrashed in pain as its inner rainbows seem to leak out. Lily saw her opportunity and running forwards, she ducked down, grabbed the Bat’leth from the floor and with surprising grace she dodged the thrashing Chilo’s attacks so she could drive home the Klingon weapon into the amour opening.
The blow was clearly fatal but as the Chilo died in its dying spasms, Lily was knocked flying through the air. Douglas could see the red blood coming from her but he suddenly realized he did know how to delay the rest of the Chilo but he also knew he could stop now to aid his fellow captain.
“Stay with Lily, Mortas. I’ve got a plan to stop them but…well…let’s just say it’s a good day to die,” said Douglas. Then he ran from the room.
“Indeed Captain, happy bug hunting. I’m looking after your woman warrior,” called Mortas.
Douglas headed for the other room he had seen on the map. Now Douglas ran for all he was worth towards that room. The temperature was now getting bitterly cold and it was starting to cut right through him. Each breath and every step required more strength than he knew he had ever had. He reached the room that had been called the temporal transporter on the map and Douglas raced into the room.
Douglas was thankful that the Chilo in their arrogance hadn’t thought to lock the transporter controls and he was also thankful for his time in Starfleet research and development division, since it meant Douglas was fairly familiar with transporter technology of his time and even if this one was a lot more advanced, it still had a similar fairly foolproof controls system.
Douglas then quickly found Lily’s life signs in the building and then the correct moment in time to beam her to.
Mortas was surprised when a transport light engulfed him and Lily, just as more Chilo warriors phased into the environmental room.
Suddenly Mortas was once more on his command deck, again looking at the Chilo device.
“Alert Status One! Destroy that thing now for all Klingon honor!” said Mortas
“Captain!” exclaimed Doctor De’Liara.
Captain Lily Fitzroy was laying injured on a bed in the USS Argonaut sickbay.
“Doc, tell Number One to AMP torpedo that alien device to pieces now. Innocent lives depend upon it,” said Lily weakly.
With a second bid, Doctor De’Liara ran over to the wall intercom and hit the bridge call button.
The Kirov and Ariane were jointly offloading their anti-matter torpedoes into a Romulan bird of prey; the Earth-Romulan war tide had turned. Now while it was still a bloodbath, an Earth and Coalition victory actually seemed possible for Earth forces. The Kirov and Ariane had cornered the last Romulan ship in the Argelius sector in an asteroid field and were now systematically destroying it. Captain Douglas and Captain Tatyana were both keen to get the confirmation of a kill, since they had a friendly bet on for whose ship was going to secure the most enemy kills.
This kill looked like it was going to the Kirov, when suddenly the Romulan in a last act of revenge released one of their strange torpedoes straight at the Kirov, then suddenly the strange torpedo was gone in a flash of light. The Ariane swooped in and put a full wave of its anti-matter torpedoes into the Romulan vessel causing it to explode in a big ball of fire.
The senior Chilo was struggling with the immense cold but his victory was still going to be assured. The other Chilo had been sent to intercept the assault force in the foyer and they were successfully delaying the newly arrived vermin from reaching their device. This universe would soon lose its ancient preservers race and with them so many of the later other major races, making destruction of this universe so much easier.
Suddenly a warning light began to flash on his console. The vermin ancestors had somehow destroyed two of the Chilo temporal targeting stations. Their attack would miss the target and fail now unless he did something quickly. Then there was a blaze of light and a missing Romulan singularity torpedo from the year 2158 materialized and hit him square in the face. The resulting explosion blew the Chilo, their device and indeed the whole building sky high.
The T.I.C. Wells-class time ship in orbit above only just managed in time to recover the assault team, the past captain, and throw up a remote containment field around the building between detecting the third temporal transport signature and the Romulan torpedo exploding thanks to their temporal controller mechanisms.
Douglas had closed his eyes after beaming the singularity torpedo from 2158 into 3310 since he fully expected to die quickly, and so was somewhat surprised to be able to open his eyes a few seconds later and discover that he once again stood in the Ariane lift. Sadly at his feet lay his late senior science officer James Comsox’s broken body. Douglas hit the lift control for sickbay and the morgue, and as he bent down to pick up his dead officer, Douglas said to the corpse: “Humanity survives, this time, and that will be your legacy Mister Comsox. I can think of none better. I sadly know that will be only cold comfort to your wife and children, though unlike me you’re going to be spared the worst thing, which is I know that Mortas implied that the Klingon legends will say, one day in our future, that the Chilo will be back with yet another evil plan.”
Then Douglas wept.
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters and settings are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.