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This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things

Posted on Mon Oct 11th, 2021 @ 7:46am by Captain Nycolas Temple & Lieutenant Krysia Kaleri-Smith

Mission: The Gauntlet
Location: Sickbay
Timeline: After "Temporary Fix"


Nyx stood pensively at the end of Nash's bio bed, watching as an Ops crewman installed a PADD on a stand onto the bedside table. The comatose Nash was lying peacefully, monitors gently beeping indicating his slow but steady heart rate. On the wall behind his bed, a small collection of flowers and cards had started to grow, dropped off by crew as they came to visit. After securing the stand onto the table, the crewman activated the PADD and went into a particular application - moments later, a video was being played. It came from the Operations team; they had taken a quick moment from completing repairs on the Pandora to give Nash a message, telling him to get better soon, how they hoped to play cards with him again next Saturday. The video changed, and it was now the Science department relaying the same sentiment from the Eclipse Bar; they raised a toast to Nash's return. Next, it was Emilie holding William with Katrine by her side in their quarters, also wishing Nash a speedy recovery. Video after video was played, from all over the ship, as crew from every department and the civilians onboard sent their heartfelt messages to Owen. Nyx stood, holding back tears, as he heard the voices of the crew, playing to his silently sleeping friend.

"As we get more sent in, they'll automatically update." Crewman Overton explained, standing back. "It'll play on a loop for as long as you like."

"Thank you." Nyx said hoarsely. "I deeply appreciate this, I know it'll help."

"Anything for the XO." Overton nodded, before making a quiet exit. Nyx allowed himself to smile at the thought.

Krysia stepped into the room, she’d been at Owen’s side for a while and hadn’t long stepped out. Returning to the room she smiled a teary smile at Nyx. “I followed Owen around for a long time” She gently took her brother’s hand and held onto it, “I served on the same ships as him, just so I could get to know my brother. He didn’t know who I really was until I finally told him when I came aboard the Pandora. He just accepted me!” She paused wiping away a few tears that ran down her cheeks. “I just want to...reach into his mind and pull him out of this, but I know this is for his own well-being. His body needs to heal.”

"He was very glad to have met you," Nyx nodded, realising his words were in the past tense. "You gave him a family again."

Krys nodded. “He gave me a whole new life, along with this larger family here aboard the ship. If I hadn’t come here I’d have never met Janes, never had the twins, and never felt like I’d found somewhere to truly call my home.”

"That's what this place has become. For him and for us." Nyx nodded, "A home. I'm just sorry that I couldn't protect him in our home. He was sitting right next to me on that Bridge."

Krysia offered a smile. “There was nothing you could do. Owen hid the severity of his injuries from you, you weren’t to know. He probably didn’t realise how bad it was himself.” She shook her head. “I wish I could have been there, I should have been there!” She hung her head. “You come back to us Owen, we need you...I need you!”

Of course, Nash didn't respond. The few moments of silence that followed hung heavily in the air. Nyx looked down at his hands and sighed.

"You know, I was angry at Katya after the battle because she ignored Mauricio's injuries, while she chased down the Breen." Nyx commented, "But I feel like I've done the same thing to Owen. Maybe... Is that what being a leader means? Completing the mission at any cost, no matter who is injured?"

Krysia frowned as she looked up at Nyx. “Absolutely not! Being a leader means...” she paused. “It means being someone that commands the respect of those around him. So much so that those who work with you are willing to face danger head on at your side. If Owen had thought that you were ever doing the wrong thing, then he’d tell you! As would anyone else on that bridge myself included.” She smiled a wry smile.

Nyx titled his head a little, but he nodded, "I guess. But we're still going to be limping back to Earth with less crew and a pretty banged up ship. Not exactly a resounding reflection for my first run as Captain."

“You brought us this far, if it wasn’t for you we could still be stuck out there being hunted.” Krysia smiled. “Give yourself some credit Sir, I for one wouldn’t want to change a thing. I have the upmost respect for you,”

Nyx gave a smile, "Thank you. That means a lot." He said with a choked back, heartfelt tone. "Look at me, I'm complaining when he's the one in a coma."

Krysia grinned. “You’re allowed, its best to get it off your chest and who better to talk to than your XO and the Chief Counsellor.” She looked down at Owen. “Owen may not be awake but he can still hear you.”

Nyx wiggled his finger at the Lieutenant, "Very sneaky, Counsellor. Giving me a session without me even realising." He indicated to the PADD on Nash's bedside table, "Yes, I hope he can hear us. Everyone's been sending in messages for him because they can't all visit right now. We're busy with repairs or preparing to go through the nebula, so our only option is the video messages. It's the best we can do. But I hope he hears the love and gratitude we're sending. Apparently this can help people recover."

Krys nodded. “It’s very kind of all of them, it’s so nice to hear their comments. I’ve no doubt it’ll help.” She smiled warmly. “With your permission I’d like to do some light duties, there are people that need a Counsellor right now, the upside of counselling is that you can do your job sitting down.” She grinned.

"Of course, if you feel up to it," Nyx replied lightly, "I think the crew will need someone to talk to as we are crossing the Nebula."

Krysia smiled. “Thank you Captain, I think if I sit around while James is working, knowing Owen is in this state, I’ll go crazy myself!"

"One of us here has to stay sane," Nyx remarked, "I'll need someone to spear head crew morale while we're in the Nebula. Nothing too extreme as we'll be in low power mode, but something easy that can be distracting and fun for the crew?"

Krys nodded. “Well the holodeck is out, it consumes too much power. How’s about we use the lounge, or maybe one of the cargo bays and set up a temporary casino? Just a few tables with various casino games, it would just require some small use of the replicators for items we don’t have. There are plenty of people aboard who enjoy playing card games.”

Nyx was excited by the idea at first but then reality set in, and he frowned, "Yeah I like that but... I just don't know if we'll have the time or resources to pull something like that off. We'll be in low power mode for most of the journey. We're conserving every last bit of power to maintain the ship. We'll be full Grey Mode." He sighed, "This is why we can't have nice things."

Krys nodded. “Well maybe just a big game of cards? We don’t need to use extra energy for that. I might even join in!”

"Sure, anything sounds good right now." Nyx nodded, "We could do a tournament or something? A round robin? We'll need to ensure everyone's sleeping fully and having time to relax, too. I'll leave it with you, Lieutenant."

Krysia nodded hoping she hadn’t bitten off more than she could chew, involving all the crew in the cards round robin could be complicated.

"I should head back, there's plenty to do before we get to the Nebula." Nyx replied, before giving one more look to Nash. He gently touched his friend's foot at the end, "We'll seen you again soon."

Krysia held Owen’s hand. “I’ll pop back and see you later” She leant forward and kissed him on the forehead before looking at Nyx. “I’ll get started on planning.”



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