Stardate: 201003.15 approximately 11:00 hours A moment on Sarabande..
Captain Burgundy Jenssen Warrior Bard sat shivering on the rock under the warm and bright sunlight of Sarabrande. Bears wanted to hug her tight, but was afraid to grab her right now. She sat holding his hand on her leg, willing herself to stay still.
"This went on for another three weeks.....every two or three days, on a random bases any time of the day or night [MACO] Ten Bears - EN-1 Support." Jenssen whispered. "T’Laurn went on a hunger strike that just about killed her. She refused to eat what was given to her for fear they had drugged it. Gorp had had enough of Skecks torture of me, as I bravely walked to that room every time knowing each time would be worse then the last. The surgeon there in that medical bay resorted to using drugs to keep me conscience after a while until I lost my voice. I would try to sing something whenever he tortured T’Laurn just to cover her screams so I wouldn’t hear them in my sleep. Between that bravery to faced these tormentors and songs I picked to sing, my constant questioning of if he had seen his daughter or not each week and if they were well or being tortured like T’Laurn and I was, Gorp broke down and finally decided to help us escape."
"Gorp gave T’Laurn his own food, which he started having delivered to him at his post to make sure she wasn’t getting anything that was drugged. It slowed the progress of her metabolic changes, but they didn’t stop. Skecks was trying to get her into a full blown Pon Farr so she’d beg him to violate her in front of Captain Lance to save her life. That was too much even for Gorp to stand by and allow to happen. Twice Skecks tried to get me alone with him disguised as Captain Lance. Suliban can take the shape of other people for a little while, if they have the appropriate genetic enhancements, you know that right? Once he had Gorp bring me to mirrored room with him tied to the chair as Byron. Of course I untied him and he tried to get me with him alone in a cell pod faking it as an escape plan, playing along like he was Byron, tried to ....
She shivered at the thought of just what he might have done to her alone. "But I knew it wasn’t Byron immediately. Even as much as we loved each other then, Byron would be looking to rescue everyone under his command and all those other prisoners."
"Did he ever?" Bears started to ask.
Jenssen shook her head. "No. At least I don’t think so. Starfleet Medical said no after they thoroughly checked us out after we were rescued, but I spent so much time unconscious, now knowing what was happening....I don’t want to be put in that position ever again... He did break every bone in my left hand over the course of the six weeks and had his surgeon repair them the morning after so it would throb all night."
Bears carefully traced the scar on her leg with a fingertip, just gently, calmly. Jenssen held her breath, not flinching as much this time. "Did you kill that slimy, bastard my brave and beautiful Warrior Bard?" He asked with an air of anger and fire in his eyes that almost rivaled her own at the situation. His eyes betrayed the death of horror he was ready to unleash now to hunt down this Suliban and all his ilk.
Jenssen almost stifled an uneasy laugh. "I’ve never really ever wanted to kill anyone in my life until then. Not for revenge, not just because I could and I was trained to be able to do so, but Skecks was the one who taught me sometimes the only solution to true evil is to totally eliminate it, without mercy and without apology because if you let it go even for a short time, it will fester and grow and suck the life out of all it touches. Skecks got exactly what he deserved and I got Gorp. Gorp will live and die for me because he feels he owes me for all the misery he contributed too. We rescued his daughters along with 15 others Skecks had captivate and our rescue came with a little unexpected help at the best possible time because T’Laurn was going to have to choose death over dishonor."
"How did you escape?" Bears asked intrigued by this tale now, knowing that the ending was quite good for her to be sitting here beside him.
"Well it was about ten weeks into being captured when almost in the middle of the night..."
The silence was quetly disrupted by a moan and an almost unrecongnizable fumbling of words in a different language.....something Jenssen hadn't heard in a long time...High Vulcan....
"T’Laurn...Hey T’Laurn! Psst." Jenssen shouted over at the Vulcan laying in a fitful sleep on her bunk. T’Laurn as repeating over and over a chant in her sleep and shivering even after Gorp had brought T'Laurn two blankets. Her breathing was strained. She was thin and pale from not eating. Jenssen was sincerely worried about her now.
"T’Laurn, hey, wake up...you ok?" Jenssen called to her.
T’Laurn’s eyes snapped open but they were dull and almost lifeless. "I’m still here."
She said with a hint of irony and almost a cynical laugh at the same time.
"Hey, who is Stelvok? Is he your husband?" Jenssen asked trying to keep her in the present.
"Yes." Was the only answer Jenssen got from the sullen Vulcan.
"Hey you are calling his name over and over and saying something in HIgh Vulcan, what were you saying?" Jenssen asked her again, trying to help focus T'Laurn's mind.
T’Laurn suddenly sat up, her focus totally clear for a moment. "Parted and unparted....forever touching and touched...He’s close. He’s close by." T'Laurn touched her fingers to her temples and held her breath for a moment. The Vulcan closed her eyes as if concentrating on something only she could hear. "He is very close."
"T'Laurn, I don’t think that’s possible...." Jenssen started to say.
Then Gorp came scrambling into the holding area out of breath. T’Laurn had taken on a huge streak of aggression towards any males around her except her mate over the last three days and Jenssen could see her almost snarl at Gorp being in her sight.
"Jenssen, you have to listen to me. Do exactly what I say, don’t fight me...we are evacuating the Helix. Starfleet is closing in on it and Skecks wants to keep his prisoners. He’s breaking you all up to send to different locations for hiding." Gorp tried to get Jenssen to understand that now was the time to escape.
"Gorp, I can’t move fast enough to help you with this worm in my leg." Jenssen looked at him seriously and then glanced at T’Laurn who was backed up against the back of her cell, glaring at Gorp with a look of murderous fire in her eyes.
"Here, this will help." Gorp had palmed a hypospray which Jenssen only assumed held something that would either kill or knock the worm out for long enough for them to escape. "But you have to help me find my daughters first." Gorp was looking at her with a deadly serious look in his icy blue eyes. Jenssen realized for the first time, that behind those eyes was a man dedicated and loyal to his family, not a military man.
Jenssen hesitated. She needed to find Captain Lance and Henricks. "My Captain and our crewmate Henricks." Jenssen countered his offer.
"We have no time. Other guards are moving them to the shuttle bays, my daughters first." Gorp glared at her.
"All right." Jenssen snapped.
Gorp dropped the force field and tossed Jenssen the hypospray and turned to T’Laurn.
"Stay away!" T’Laurn screamed at him, wild with rage, as he went to drop the force field on her cell. "You.... are not... my mate..." She panted at him, wild fury in her eyes.
"I don’t know if we can bring her. She’s too far gone. Skecks is going to self destruct the Helix....it might be more humane to leave her here now." Gorp looked back at Jenssen.
"She’s coming, if we have to drag her out." Jenssen huffed back at him as she quickly pulled up what was left of her uniform and found the head of the worm which was now almost twently-eight centimeters from where it had begun under her knee. It was working its way towards the inside of her thigh, high enough up that it was nearing the junction with her hip. She brushed its head with the hypospray and gritted her teeth knowing the worm would not take kindly to a dose of this medication. She injected the hypo and the worm set off a cascade of electrical impulses, causing her leg to stiffen. Jenssen crammed her fist into her mouth to stifle a scream. The worm suddenly went limp and her leg went numb almost to the toes. It was a sedative, effective enough to knock the worm out for several hours and the pins and needles feeling of numbness was far preferable to the alternative.
Gorp was already at the door watching for guards running down the corridors shouting orders. Gorp was listening for Skecks’ commands.
Jenssen jumped through the lowered force field on her cell and ran to T’Laurn’s cell.
"T’Laurn, we are getting out of here. We are going to find Stelvok." Jenssen shouted at the Vulcan who stood crouched, ready to attack anyone entering her cell. "T’Laurn, I’m lowering the field! Let me help you." Jenssen yelled at her again and this time the Vulcan’s eyes darted to hers.
"Not him! He is not my mate." T’Laurn growled, bearing her teeth like a trapped animal.
"OK, just me. I won’t let males come that close to you ok...Trust me?" Jenssen quickly lowered the field and stepped in, being careful not to make any sudden movements. T’Laurn kept crouched at the back of her cell ready to fight.
"Here, give me your arm. Let me knock that worm out while we make a run for it." Jenssen held up the hypospray and both of her hands up showing T’Laurn that’s all she had and nothing more. Jenssen reached out carefully and touched the Vulcan’s arm. Instantly Jenssen could feel the fever beyond the typically body temperature a Vulcan had through what was left of the Vulcans uniform sleeve. T’Laurn quickly yanked her arm back glaring at Jenssen.
"No, I need the pain to keep focused. I need to fight or I will die. There is no time now." T’Laurn’s eyes were wild with a primal instinct she could no longer hold off, but Jenssen could see the Vulcan was struggling to regain some control now for just a moment.
"Jenssen, hit me. Hit me, as hard as you can." T'Laurn replied with a moment of clearity.
"I will not." Jenssen shouted back, tucking the hypospray into the top of her own uniform as T'Laurn had refused it.
"Come on you two, we have to go! Or leave her!" Gorp yelled at them both. "Now!"
"You must, hurry. I can’t go with him ...please....do it..." T’Laurn pleaded with her, unwilling to look at or move toward a male not her mate, driven by instinct alone to stay away from Gorp.
Jenssen balled her fist and struck the Vulcan as hard as she could on the jaw, swearing her knuckles would break against bone that was harder and denser then a Human’s.
T’Laurn rocked back, eyes shut and shook her head as if to clear the fog. T’Laurn knees buckled and the Vulcan staggered forward and reached out for Jenssen to lean heavily on her shoulders. The Vulcan was barely conscience, T'Laurn slowly nodded, eyes still closed tightly.
"Alright Commander, let’s go, keep your eyes shut, your feet moving and don’t look at him if it will help. That's an order." Jenssen commanded, wrapped an arm around the Vulcan’s waist as T’Laurn leaned on her for support. The two women made their way up behind Gorp. Gorp grabbed Jenssen careful not to touch T’Laurn and pushed them both into the corridor in front of him. He held a disruptor pistol against Jenssen’s back as she quickly limped along helping to support T’Laurn’s tall, thin, frame towards what she hoped was the shuttle bay.
Skecks came up from behind in the hall right as they made it to the door to the shuttle bay.
Skecks shouted at Gorp. "Make sure you get my two favorites to the rendezvous point and I will make sure your two favorites are shuttled safely there as well."
Skecks laughed as Gorp spun around to see his two daughters in rags of servants held by two guards behind Skecks. The two children screamed in their own language what could have only been 'Daddy' and Jenssen and T’Laurn both looked back to see the small children.
Gorp wanted to run to them. Jenssen could see it in the way he held his shoulders, but instead he just nodded an acknowledgement trying not to tip their hand yet. Jenssen saw him look longingly at his children as the guards grabbed both of them and pushed them onward.
Jenssen stopped dead in her tracks as T’Laurn almost growled deep in her chest, a grumble like a wild animal, at the sound of Skecks behind them. Jenssen could feel it radiate up as T’Laurn leaned on her.
"Not now, T’Laurn a few more steps, we have to get into that shuttle bay." Jenssen whispered in her ear hoping the Vulcan could keep her senses about her long enough to get Skecks and Gorp’s daughters all in the Bay together.
Jenssen quickly pushed against T’Laurn’s face with her free hand to make the Vulcan turn her gaze away from Skecks.
Jenssen gasped as visions of the blood fever of the Pon Farr filled her head. Jenssen staggered and almost fell in the corridor with T’Laurn as the shear primal instinct, the driving desire to mate like a thirst that could never be quenched, filled her head. T’Laurn jerked her face away from Jenssen’s hand and with a moment of clarity mumbled through clenched teeth in a rather mater of fact tone, "Emafa kito, it is a mind touch. It is best not to touch my skin or my face like that. I appologize for the intrusion."
"Like a mind meld?" Jenssen swallowed hard and tried to get her breath and her bearings back after the images had instantly flooded her senses.
"Not unless you are suddenly telepathic. It is more vague then a mild meld and only one way, but I can’t prevent that kind of telepathic though or image projection right now. Humans would not understand it." T'Laurn quickly dismissed it.
"Oh, I can understand it alright...I just wasn’t prepared for the.... intensity... of it. Saying a human is love sick is a pale comparison." Jenssen shook her head clear of the wild images and then replied in all sincerity, "Your bedroom secrets are safe with me T’Laurn. No human would even believe me anyway if I did tell them."
Jenssen looked around the shuttle bay as the doors swished open in front of them. She hoped Captain Lance and Ensign Henricks were there already.
Gorp followed closely behind them. Jenssen could see several pod ships being hurriedly readied for launch. Pockets of guards were standing over and dragging various prisoners to pods.
Jenssen quickly looked about and assessed the situation; about 40 guards and about 17 prisoners, not counting Gorp’s two daughters. Her heart sang as she saw Captain Lance half carrying Henricks just to the right of where they were entering the bay. He looked in fair condition, thin but alert. Byron smiled a beaming huge grin as he saw her come in supporting T’Laurn. Jenssen nodded a quick nod at him and her eyes darted behind her twice to indicate Gorp, hoping that Byron would understand he was with them. Byron nodded back at them indicating the guard behind him was also willing to help. The guard was an Alpha Centurian, tall and young, not much over the age of a teenager.
Skecks started towards a shuttle in the middle of the bay and the guards behind him pushed Gorps’ daughters to quickly follow. The youngest was, all of maybe 6 or 7 Jenssen quickly concluded. She had long braided, light-brown drelocks, bright green eyes and was darling for a multiple jawed being. The little girl stumbled and fell to her knees as the guards were pushing her along was too fast for her shorter stride. She started to cry as the guard roughly reached for her and that was all Gorp could take.
Gorp forgot all about Jenssen and T’Laurn and ran across the bay, body slamming the guard standing over his youngest daughter. Jenssen quickly pushed T’Laurn up against the hull of a pod and followed Gorp to the children. Skecks came rushing back off the steps up to the shuttle to meet Gorp. Gorp had taken on both guards hovering over his children and that is when all hell broke loose in the shuttle bay.
Disruptors and phasers whined as Jenssen ducked and slid up to the older of Gorps’ daughters.
Jenssen grabbed the older girl’s shoulders and then pointed her and her younger sister towards T’Laurn and yelled at the two girls, "See that, dark haired lady there leaning against the ship hull, run for her and stay with her..." right then Jenssen realized Skecks was standing over the three of them with Jenssen’s Romulan blooddagger in his hand.
Skecks slashed at the older girl and Jenssen caught his arm and the blade with her hand, nicking her hand on the razor sharp blade.
As Jenssen pushed the older girl out of the way and yelled, "RUN!" to them.
Jenssen wrenched Skeck’s arm down and quick as a cat was behind him, stretching his arm and the blade up behind his neck in a totally unnatural amount of twisting. Skecks just laughed at her and flipped his hand over to point the knife’s blade outward towards Jenssen’s belly.
Jenssen was quicker than Skecks expected, unhindered by the effects of the sedated worm in her leg. Jenssen grabbed the hilt of the dagger and pushed both of her hands upward away from her belly. Jenssen still had a hold on his hand and the hilt of the blade, when he spun his body around with a typical Suliban transformational change in body position. Jenssen’s upward push of the blade continued with a back hand stroke as Skecks tried to pull the knife away from her. She caught him almost accidently across the neck with the blade held in his own hand. The blade slit his throat wide open, right across the vocal cords. Yellowish blood poured from his neck. Skecks’ eyes went wide at Jenssen’s uncanny quick luck as he knocked the dagger out of both of their hands.
Skecks leaned heavily on her, grabbed her hair and shoulder, wickedly smiling as he stared her in the eyes. Jenssen’s anger contained for the last seven weeks of torture came unleashed. She reached up and grabbed his tongue in her hand through the gaping hole in his neck and spun away from his grasp, ending up behind him again by using almost a ball room dancing move to twirl under his arm. She shoved him forward towards the bulkhead of the shuttle bay. As they scrambled, she quickly wrapped his own touge around his throat, tucking one end through itself into a noose as she slammed him face first into the bulk head, pressing her foot into the small of his back to hold him there. While continuing to hold his tongue tightly in her hand. Jenssen groped around blindly for anything she could get her other hand on to hit him with. Jenssen grabbed the first thing that came into her reach. It was an anti-grav unit for lifting cargo loads in a sling. It had a large hook on the front of it. It wasn’t even a second thought to her when she rammed the hook through the end of his tongue and quickly set it to hover four meters off the ground and let it go.
The anti-grave unit hoisted Skecks up in a noose made from his own tongue, strangling him slowly as he kicked and gurgled trying desperately to release himself from the antigrav unit. It only took 90 seconds for him to pass out from lack of oxygen.
Jenssen hadn’t seen the rest of the fight that had broke out across the flight deck until she turned around. T’Laurn had both of the children into the shuttle pod and Gorp was holding Captain Lance on his knees under the edge of the pod. Jenssen could tell something wasn’t right. Henricks was far to the center of the shuttle bay and six dead Suliban were besides him. Henrick's back was bend and an unnatural angle. It looked like he had taken them on single handed. Pod Ships were zooming out of the bay now as the computer started a final three minute verbal count down.
Jenssen ran to Byron, tears in her eyes as she could see the hole burned completely through his chest.
"Byron!..." Jenssen choked as she fell to her knees in front of him.
"Burgundy....go, quickly get out of here....there isn’t anything you can do for me now. Go quickly, that’s the last pod and there isn’t enough room for me on it." Bryon mumbled to her.
"Byron, did you know what Skecks wanted?....Did you know it?" Jenssen asked him, desperate to know if everything they had endured was frivolous or not.
Byron closed his eyes before answering her, unable to look her in the eyes now as he wheezed, "Yes, I do and so does T’Laurn....you have to get her out of here. That’s my last direct order to you. You understand me?...get her to Starfleet. They have to have that information." He whispered to her, his head falling to his chest as he struggled for breath. "I love you....I always have. I can’t live with what I had to let him do to you....leave now."
Byron gasped, sitting there on the decking as the life drained from him. "Go, Burgundy, Go...now..." He rasped as he spit blood with every gasp.
Byron pushed her weakly towards the shuttle pod. Gorp gently grabbed her arms, "Com’on Jenssen... we have less than two minutes...we have to go, we have to be clear of the core."
Jenssen was too numb from the information to struggle and too blinded by tears to fight Gorp as he pushed her into the shuttle pod. T’Laurn was sitting in the back staring at the wall trying not to look at Gorp, as Gorp pushed Jenssen into the seat at tactical station. Gorps two children sat on the floor hugging each other, staring at the Human and the Vulcan in the ship with them as Gorp launched the pod ship out of the bay.
Jenssen watched out the side viewport as they left the force field covering the front the shuttle bay. Byron slumped to the deck, unconscious or dead as he saw the shuttle with her leave the bay safely. In moments, it wouldn’t matter if he were still alive or not. The Helix self destructed around him in a ball of fire and light. Gorp punched the warp drive on the shuttle just as a fire ball of atmosphere and shrapnel bust though the upper layers of the brown dwarf planetoid and lit the upper atmosphere consisting of ammonia and hydrogen on fire in a blaze of blue green plasma flames that raced along the surface of the planet like swarm of electric eels through the various cloud layers.
Nearly 100 pod ships were fleeing the explosion now. Most of those in the pod ships were Suliban merics. A fleet of various Federation of Planets vessels was engaging the massive swarm of escaping cell ships as they emerged from the upper layer of the Brown Dwarf. The viewscreen was chaos as some of the ships were full of escaping prisoners and others were Suliban attacking the fleet or trying to tractor the prisoners. None of the Suliban probably knew Skecks was dead yet. Gorp piloted the ship quickly and swiftly through the malay.
Gorp punched the cell ship into a high warp and a Vulcan ship dropped into warp behind them. Gorp cursed in his own language and took evasive maneuvers to lose the Vulcan ship. The podship began to spin out of control.
"Gorp, kill the engines!" Jenssen screamed when she realized the ship follow them was a Vulcan ship.
"To late!" Gorp yelled back. "This podship is rigged to crash! Damn Skecks was going to kill us all anyways. That was his plan all along. Now looks like he might still succeed!" Gorp howled in indignation.
"Drop shields! Send a mayday to them to beam us all out!" Jenssen shocked out of her stupor started pulling the panels apart on the shuttle to drop the shields and kill the warp drive. An ice planet loomed larger in the view screen as the cell ship lurched. The Vulcan ship had tried to lock a tractor beam on them.
"I can’t get anything to respond!" Gorp howled again reaching into the helm pulling out cables trying to knock out the full impluse drive controls.
"We’re going in way too fast." Jenssen yelled as the podship suddenly lurched as it hit the planet’s thin atmosphere. Jenssen at least could manually engaged the intertial dampeners as the shuttle descended rapidly into the atmosphere of the L class planet. Ice and snow loomed up at them as the podship came in at a clip a little faster than Jenssen liked the look of. Gorp tried to keep the nose up the whole way in but the podship hit hard, throwing them all to the floor. A spray of ice and melted water flew into the atmosphere and pelted back onto the small craft as the shuttle slid to a halt, surprisingly intact.
Jenssen was the first to get up and check T’Laurn who was pressed up against the back of the tactical station. T’Laurn was fevered and shivering, another than a large scratch on her face, didn’t look injured. Jenssen pulled out blankets from the emergency supplies to wrap around T'Laurn to prevent shock. Gorp’s two girls were next and they looked fine, just shaken where they were pressed against the bulkhead. Jenssen tucked two more blankets around them as they sat silently staring at her.
"Hey, it’s ok. I’m not going to hurt you." Jenssen leaned over to them and they shrunk back from her. Gorp was struggling up from being half tossed into the control panel at the helm and he staggered to his daughters. He hugged them tightly and wrapped the blankets around them tighter just sitting in floor of the shuttle with them in the dim gray emergency lighting. Blood was gushing from a gash on his head and a rip along his upper lip. A large bruise was forming on one arm through his ripped tunic, but he didn’t care. He was happy to sit there, just hugging them protectively.
"You ok?" Gorp grunted at Jenssen.
"Yeah, but T’Laurn’s in bad shape. Let’s hope that Vulcan ship can find us, quickly." Jenssen sat down and cradled a shivering T’Laurn. Jenssen was careful not to come in contact with the Vulcan’ skin, least she be subject again to what was likely going to be rather disturbing, uncontrollable telepathic images from the Vulcan now. Jenssen tried to keep T’Laurn wrapped tight and to keep her warm as the interior of the shuttle quickly started to freeze over. Jenssen knew the Vulcan wouldn't fare well with the cold.
It was about then the worm in Jenssen leg woke up from the sedative and it was angry. It set off a cascade of electrical impulses and Jenssen shrieked grabbing her leg. Gorps two children sat wide eyed at her response. Jenssen tried to stop screaming to not scare them.
T’Laurn woke up to her screams. "Jenssen?"
"Yes. I’m here T’Laurn." Jenssen panted though clenched teeth and stifled another scream as the worm buzzed again in anger.
"Your blooddagger? Where is it?" T'Laurn was focused for a moment.
"It’s gone, I lost it in the shuttle bay." Jenssen hissed holding her leg tighter.
"No, it’s not." Gorp’s oldest daughter piped up. "I grabbed it."
The youngster, all of about 10 years old with braided black hair and icy blue eyes of her father, held up the emerald green bade she had grabbed off the deck plates of the shuttle bay.
Gorp took it from her gently and handed it to Jenssen.
"If you would permit me, I can get that worm out of your leg now." T'Laurn replied with all seriousness as she leaned against the bulkhead, trying to not look at Gorp, "I have medical training..."
"Are you in any condition to do it?" Jenssen asked through clenched teeth.
"Wait let me get the emergency kit." Gorp dug around in the cold for the emergency med kit and found it. It had been neglected and badly pillaged for goods. It’s meager contents consisted of odds old doses of antibiotics and an old, crude dermal regenerator in it. Jenssen fished around for the rest of the hypo spray that she had tucked into her uniform and came up with it. It was a small dose of sedatitve still left, enough knock the worm out again, but probably not enough to cut it out without her feeling it.
T’Laurn breathed steady and slowly focusing on her own arm and the worm that was not thriving nearly as well as Jenssen’s. "I can, but it needs to be quickly. I don’t know how long I can stay focused."
"We do not know how long it will take for the rescue teams to arrive and I may not be conscience much longer." T’Laurn warned her.
"Ok hurry," Jenssen agreed, as she quickly found the head of the worm again high up on the inside of her thigh and injected its head with the sedative. Her leg went blissfully numb where the worm was wrapped around and into her muscles along the nerve.
Jenssen handed T’Laurn the blooddagger. T’Laurn quickly turned the blade to her own forearm and without a sound, cut the skin open to reveal the head end of a very weak worm still clinging to life in her own body. T'Laurn quickly slit down her own skin over the top of where the worm was along her arm and dug into the muscle to cut off the head worm without a yelp of pain. Once the worm's head was removed, it's microfibers retracted and T'Laurn slowly and steadily pulled it off the nerve bundle and out of the muscle it had twisted itself into. It took a few moments for the microfilbers to pull loose of their achors, but the entire twelve cenetimeter long worm finally came out cleanly, without pieces left that could cause infection. T'Laurn drew a quick breath using the pain to keep focused on the task at hand. The green blood welled slowly along the long slice in her arm as her condition was poor, but she still had the constitution to continue.
Jenssen handed T'Laurn the dermal regenerator. T’Laurn quickly passed it over her own arm to heal up the skin in a blister of a dark green scar. T’Laurn watched fascinated by the Romulan blade as it absorbed her green Vulcan blood before their eyes. A thin green line like a tree ring appeared on the blade just behind a yellowish ring that was the blood of Skecks forever embedded in the metal of the blade. "Fascinating, I have never seen one of these and would like to study its properties more thoroughly."
"Anytime T’Laurn, you bring honor to that blade by holding it and what you do with it." Jenssen said though clenched teeth trying to keep T’Laurn focused. "I only know that the blade never needs sharpened and it is completely sterile after it absorbs the blood. At least, that is according to the Romulan Procouncil I recieved it from."
"Ready." T’Laurn asked Jenssen as she held a hand against Jenssen’s leg surrounding the head of the worm high up on the inside of Jenssen’s thigh. Jenssen’s head swam with alien images that T’Laurn was thinking of now. Stelvok’s firm embrace, the pain of cutting that worm out of her own arm, and green blood. Jenssen could almost see that green blood on her arm now as her head swam with effect of T'Laurn's blood fever from the contact with T'Laurn's hand on her leg. Jenssen tried to focus on just one of these strange images flooding her mind as she nodded to T'Laurn to begin.
As the knife blade cut through her skin, digging down to find the head of the worm, Jenssen started to scream again, clenching her teeth. Jenssen couldn’t block out the pain the way the Vulcan did. About that time a large male Vulcan pulled open the door to the podship. He was dressed in a white winter survival suit and Jenssen could see he was as dark skinned as T’Laurn was fair. His build was almost like a huge, but thin, chocolate brown grizzly bear with thick, black wavy hair. Jenssen’s leg burned on fire and she clenched her teeth as T’Laurn continued to cut out the worm as quickly as possible now that they had started.
T’Laurn refused to look up at Stelvok, trying to finish removing the worm from Jenssen’s leg before she lost herself again to the blood fever. Gorp and his two daughters pulled back from the door to let Stelvok enter. Stelvok quickly and quietly knelt down by T’Laurn. He solumnly pulled a glove off, placing his hand against T'Laurn's face at specific pressure points to help her focus on her task and at the same time let her know he was with her now. Sweat poured from Jenssen’s brow as T’Laurn kept cutting and started pulling on the worm as it released it's grip.
T’Laurn almost smiled as Stelvok mercifully reached over and pinched the junction between Jenssen's shoulder and neck. Jenssen had no time to object but instantly understood this was only so T'Laurn could quickly finish her work without inflicting more pain on her friend. With Stelvok there, Jenssen didn’t need to be strong for all of them any longer. It was time for Jenssen to let someone else take the lead.
Jenssen could sense T'Laurn's thoughts and the faint brush of Stelvok's calming, strong presence instantly projected through the contact with T'Laurn hand on her leg. As Jenssen passed into unconsiencnes, a sense of peace for the first time in seven weeks overcame her. Jenssen couldn't tell if it was her own thought or T'Laurn's now, but Jenssen sighed in relief as the tunnel vision surrounded her. Jenssen smiled back as the echoes of word 'friend' in her mind lead her into the calming darkness.
To be continued...