"From Fascinating to Firsts"
[previous post was "From Freaky to Fascinating" by the science minded Jessica]

Setting: MASQUERADE DREAMS, Room 22-049

Stardate: 30152.1535

To be lost in a universe created by one's own memories one would expect to encounter an entire world of familiarity. After all, memories unlike dreams are not supposed to be random or unpredictable in nature.

For Shar'El thought there had been nothing but darkness around her, an absolute emptiness that would become at times filled by voices or images of people she did not know.

"Words have meaning. And Names have power. The universe began with a word, you know. But which came first? The word or the thought behind the word?"

The voice had been that of the old man whom she had seen before in this place, a man possessing wisdom born from the beginning of time and yet a being whom she had never before today knew of.  Each time he spoke, her mind would be stripped of all thoughts and like an new black canvas it would wait for inspiration to create something new. One of countless memories buried deep in her mind would be presented so that she would be able to see it first time.

The next images that came to challenge the eternal night that stretched all around her it had been of an unknown yet familiar place, of a world and a person. Although she knew beyond a doubt that this had been the first time she had laid eyes upon any of them Shar'El could not shake the feeling that she somehow intimately knew them all.

As strange and unknown as the flowers on the hillside may have appeared, their fragrance had been pleasantly remembered with a warm smile. As alien as the landscape had been, the triple moonrise had filled the dark haired woman with memories of a heart-racing romance which brought a tear to her eye. As completely unknown as the tall and handsome man standing before her had been Shar'El could recall the softness of his touch and the sweetness of his lips.

"Love and death. Each an inescapable part of the cycle you know as life.

The old man's words once again cleared her mind, leaving being nothing but darkness so to allow for new memories to be seen.  Alas not all of these unknown memories hidden within her mind had been pleasant ones to see for the first time. The death of hundreds of people each as close to her as a brother or sister threatened the sanity of this only child. Shar'El could remember mourning every single one of them, yet she could not recall a single name.

They all had died for a cause, for something they believed in beyond the fear of the unknown darkness that awaits us all after death.  Shar'El wanted to scream and cry, to let the universe know of the sacrifices these people had made, but she could not recall why so many had willingly given their last breath or even if their cause had benefited from their sacrifices.

"It is easy to find something worth dying for. Do you have anything worth living for?"

The voice of the old man took the dark haired woman by surprise, Shar'El never having expected such words to be spoken.  Once again darkness descended around her and as new memories came into view, the acting ExO / ILO found that she actually knew the places and people she had been looking at.

The USS ANUBIS, a mighty SCARAB-CLASS Intel cruiser and the ship that had become her new home.

Erik Morningstar, the man in charge of the ship and a friend who had welcomed her as his next in command.

Eve Dalziel, counselor to the crew and friend to the Captain, a woman who seemed already ready to listen and offer guidance to those in need.

Maya, the reclusive scientist, last of her kind with a mind able to stretch to any distant star in the cosmos.

Jayson Stark, a man who had lost everything and still managed to find something to make him smile as a new day dawned.

Ya'Han, a noble woman who escaped from her gilded cage to seek life on her own terms.

Sonja Paquette, the quick tongued free spirited redhead who came across as one able to fix anything for anyone.

"Commander Shar'El, can you hear me?"

The voice had been that of Lillie Doyanne, a woman with hidden secrets of her own, and a person whom Shar'El trusted without the slightest hesitation.

Yes, all of them and many more had been a reason for her to give her life to protect, as they had been a reason for the acting ExO / ILO to fight to live another day.  Klingons were quick to claim that 'today is a good day to die', and for the first time Shar'El found herself ready to fight more than ever before in claiming that today would be the first day of the rest of her life.

Tiffany Reeve

Lieutenant Commander Shar'El
Acting Executive Officer / Intel Liaison Officer