(Previous Post was Marissa's "Gentle Strength")

Setting: USS ANUBIS, Bridge
Stardate: 63073.1050

The young woman stood in the middle of the ANUBIS' command deck… not as alone as she had initially thought, but now she had almost wished that she had been.  The figured that had joined Rikar had not been one associated with pleasant memories… not by a long shot.

"What, no warm welcome for an old friend?"

"You are not my friend," the redhead quickly countered with… not entirely certain as to how this situation had come to be.

"I guess you are right… like it or not… we are much closer than friends."

Setting: Another time, another place
Time Index: 7 years ago… or was it 8? (plus 1 hours from the end of the last post)

The young woman sat in a small compact ball, shivering to the point of barely being able to hold on to the phaser she had repeatedly used to infuse the floating iron beam with energy in order to create some short lived light and heat.

It had been a while since the accident that had isolated her from everything and left the Lt. Cmdr. alone inside a sealed piece of wreckage.  The only reason why she was still alive had been because of the emergency bulkheads that had fallen into place before all hell broke loose.  Unfortunately, the same items that had been responsible for her surviving the structural failure that had befallen the ship had sealed her into the agony she now had to endure.

As time passed, the room she had started to look upon as a blessing of good fortune had rapidly turned into a curse... a dark, cold and lonely curse.  The makeshift escape pod, with its drastic lack of heat and continuously reducing oxygen supply, now felt more like a space floating coffin rather than an instrument of salvation.

With a hand as steady as an earthquake, the blue-lip woman painfully raised her weapon and did her best to aim it at the now very faintly glowing beam that had brought her heat and light, as little as it was, for the last hour or so.

[[I... I wou... would... ha... have... a... better... better... cha.. chan... chance... hitting... an... an... ant... with... a... qua... quantum... torpedo...]] Rikar mentally stuttered to herself as her trembling hand tried as best as she could to accurately position the weapon in line with the intended target.

Numbed by the intense cold, the young woman could barely feel the form of the phaser in her hand, and when her finger finally pressed the trigger, her mind went totally blank for a single, eternal second.  As far as she had known, her aim had been as off as it could have been, and if the phaser's energy bolt came in contact with an already weakened section of the hull, these could easily have been her last seconds in this realm of existence... a fate that she almost welcomed.

To her surprise nothing happened... no explosion... no sudden depressurization... actually there had not even been a shot fired.  Seconds passed and eventually the phaser she clenched in her trembling hand was slowly made to rise to her eyes so that she could try to figure out what had happened.  When the answer became apparent to her, the young woman's frigid grip ever-so-slowly loosened releasing the icy-cold item to the surrounding weightlessness.

The reason for the phaser not having fired had been a simple one... the power supply had been exhausted... now what she had expected to be her greatest enemy... her rapidly depleting oxygen supply took a back seat to the newer, more immediate threat... that of her freezing to death long before she would no longer be able to draw breath.

Hypothermia wasted no time to become better acquainted with the lonely Starfleet officer who had almost accepted what she knew was to come.  Alone... floating in the cold emptiness of space... for maybe longer than she could even imagine... maybe she would finally be able to answer the question that plagued most sentient life forms... was there something on the other side?

The young woman's eyes gave in to the bitter cold that had enveloped her like an eternal blanket... this would be the dream she would never wake from...


"Samantha?" A strange, yet welcoming voice asked.

"Who?" The young woman heard herself answer.


"That's not my name."

"Than what is your name?"

"I... my name is... Ana... no... Cleo... no... why can't I remember?"

"Who is Ana?"

"Ana... Anaqueen... she was my... CO... my friend..."

"Who is Cleo?"

"She was also a friend... but not Human... she was... ridges on her nose... why can't I remember?"

"What other names do you remember?"

"Neil... Daisy... Peter... Jax... Erik... Shioban... Talia..."

"Talia!  Talia is a nice name... who is she?"

"A sweet little girl.  She was my... daughter... sort of... I think... Enaii was her real mother... I was just... a friend... no... I was more than a friend."

"Who is Enaii?"

"Enaii was... strange... funny... weird..."

"But who was she?"

"I... I can't remember?"

"Can you remember who you are now?"

"Yes... I'm... my name is Sab... Sa... I can't remember... why can't I remember?"

"Samantha maybe?"

"Yes... that's it... I remember... I think... I always wanted... I always wanted to be called Samantha... but why can't I remember being called that?"

"What's in a name?"

"But it's *my* name... isn't it?"

"If you want it to be... you have all the time in the universe to remember."
Sabrina Jones {sabrina_sweet@hotmail.com}
Captain Sabrina Rikar
Commanding Officer
"We are Grey, we stand between the Candle and the Star, between the Darkness and the Light"
-Entilza Delenn,
Babylon 5