Star Trek Hunter
Episode 3: Breakfast Serial
Scene 12: Life is a Beach... (Part 1 of 2)
Life is a Beach… (Part 1 of 2)
“Thank you for helping out, Chief. You may go back to Ocean if you wish.” The communications system carried Dr. Carrera’s voice from the main bridge to the even more cramped bridge of the tactical unit. Chief Guth was reclined in the pilot’s seat - nothing to do now that the tactical unit was attached to the platform and the re-combined Hunter docked inside Star Base Eleven. But he had enjoyed giving brief guided tours of the tactical bridge to Rear Admiral Burton and several members of her staff.
“Oh I definitely wish, but I’m glad to help, sir,” Guth replied. He made his way from the tactical unit to one of the ports and onto SB11. Before heading to a transporter room, he took the opportunity to get a shower and a shave. Guth shaved his head in part to show his spots. He was defiantly proud of his trill heritage even though the spots barely showed up against his dark skin - a legacy of his African American heritage. Most trills were light skinned - those with ancestry from sunnier climes simply had more spots and some were entirely spotted. This was Guth’s mother’s heritage and his spots also covered his entire body.
Within moments of a much needed grooming, Chief Guth was able to find a transporter room and was soon returned to the beam-in booth at the resort on Ocean. Just in time for breakfast.
The Irons family was accustomed to welcoming the Hunter’s crew and had chosen to wait until the morning of their third day on planet. This allowed the crew to work out a lot of their excitement and hit the waves so they wouldn’t be restless. While the ceremony was designed by vulcans, it was designed with Star Fleet crews in mind.
Chief Flight Specialist Dewayne Guth walked out onto the beach in the pre-dawn hour awash in the sound of a collection of well-tuned vulcans chanting solemnly by torch light. He smiled to himself and remembered when Commander Pepper had treated him and a few other friends to one of the giant first officer’s favorite collections of klingon chants - celebrating the defining moment in klingon mythology - the day the klingons had killed their gods for being petty and troublesome. Which made klingons the most eminently sensible people Guth had ever heard of. Then there were the symbiote birthday celebrations his mother had taken him to, replete with trills chanting stentoriously. And a bajoran religious festival he had witnessed while on Deep Space 9 - complete with chanting bajorans.
“The whole universe is Roman Catholic,” Guth mused to himself. He had heard nearly a dozen different species chanting - for various ceremonial reasons - always in languages that sounded suspiciously like Latin. Even the tiny binars, who communicated in a computer language at tremendous speed that could only be maintained because of the computer implants in their heads, had their own ceremonial chants. Their chanting was very high-pitched and sounded somewhat like Gregorian chants being hummed at a very high speed by a swarm of angry bees. It was an astoundingly irritating sound, but, like most binar communications, mercifully brief - the entire religious ceremony lasting no more than eight seconds.
Chief Guth picked up a glass and sniffed its contents. Whatever it was, it smelled fruity, delicious and extremely alcoholic. The alcohol content must have been enough to loosen a vulcan’s tongue - Guth was getting a contact high just from sniffing it. There weren’t that many people present - maybe forty. The chanting came to an end at the very moment of sunrise and in the growing light, Tamar Irons, Justice Irons’ oldest daughter and Ocean’s planetary administrator, raised her glass.
“My family has farmed these islands for nearly four hundred years. Like my ancestors, I have welcomed many, many Star Fleet crews to this beach and this resort. For nearly three hundred years, only Star Fleet and allied services crews have been allowed to visit this place. But you are not just any crew. You are my mother’s crew and many of you have become great friends. We consider you family and I will say to you what I have never said to any other Star Fleet crew: When your service with Star Fleet is over, you may return to this place and we will find homes for you. Or build them. So again I welcome you, not as the crew of a visiting Star Fleet vessel, but as family. Welcome Home!”
Vulcan speeches rarely elicited cheers, but this one elicited serious cheering, cut short only by the desire of the crew to consume the sparkling, fruity and evidently quite powerful beverages they had been supplied with. Guth drained his glass and headed toward the breakfast table. A great buffet had been spread out, offering foods grown on these islands along with some enormous fish that had been smoked for days.
“Welcome back, Chief,” Lt. Kenneth Dolphin said, on spotting his senior pilot strolling toward the buffet table. Dolphin started to raise his glass, but suddenly looked down at his hand - something was wrong. He wasn’t holding a glass - he was holding a phaser. He had no idea where it came from. Dolphin suddenly found himself at war with his own right hand. He opened his mouth to scream for help, but no sound emerged.
But his scream did not go unheard. Ensign T’Lon dropped her glass, dodged around a few people, leapt over a table and landed in the sand behind Dolphin. Her hands went to his temples - she was already in telepathic contact with him.
Dewayne Guth was frozen where he stood - not with fear. He was a pilot and was trained to evade phaser fire. Something kept him rooted, screaming silently with terror, unable to move or to make a sound. Lt. T’Lok Smith tackled him at tremendous speed, slamming the pilot to the ground and landing on top of him.
As soon as Guth was no longer available as a target, Dolphin, assisted by T’Lon, finally managed to drop the phaser. He was finally able to scream - he fell to his knees, letting out a short, ragged howl of anguish. Behind him, T’Lon, her fingers still on his temples, had also fallen to her knees, gasping with effort.
Lt. Cmdr. Mlady, who had been largely absent from the beach, raced toward them at lightning speed and retrieved the phaser from the ground, then stepped back, a strange look of frustration on her face.
Aware that the danger was over, T’Lok helped Guth to his feet, then hugged him. Guth was badly shaken and hugged back, still shuddering as the adrenaline that had flooded his system started to go sour.
Dolphin lost consciousness and collapsed back into T’Lon’s arms, his head lolling on her shoulder, eyes wide open, staring at the sky, seeing nothing. T’Lon kept one hand on his face, maintaining telepathic contact, a grimace of pain on her face. Another vulcan knelt in front of them, placing one hand on Dolphin’s face and one hand on T’Lon’s face, helping to stabilize them with her own mind. T’Lon’s expression of pain relaxed and she allowed the other vulcan to support her and the unconscious Lt. Dolphin.