Regrets

From newsfeed.pitt.edu!godot.cc.duq.edu!news.duke.edu!zombie.ncsc.mil!simtel!news.kei.com!world!news.bu.edu!acs.bu.edu!crime Fri Oct 6 13:11:11 1995
Path: newsfeed.pitt.edu!godot.cc.duq.edu!news.duke.edu!zombie.ncsc.mil!simtel!news.kei.com!world!news.bu.edu!acs.bu.edu!crime
From: crime@bu.edu (mary self)
Newsgroups: alt.startrek.creative
Subject: REPOST: Regrets (VOY)
Date: 6 Oct 1995 11:52:43 GMT
Organization: Boston University
Lines: 385
Message-ID: <4535ab$c9i@news.bu.edu>
NNTP-Posting-Host: acs.bu.edu
X-Newsreader: TIN [version 1.2 PL2]

All the characters in this story except for Hannah belong to Paramount and are
its property. They are used here strictly for non-profit entertainment
purposes only. The story and the character of Hannah Jemison, however, are
entirely of my own invention.

Regrets

by Carly Hunter
copyright 1995

“Thank you for seeing me, Captain.” Ensign Hannah Jemison remained
at attention before her commanding officer, Captain Kathryn Janeway.
“Not at all, Ensign. Please sit down. Now, what can I do for you?”
“Well, Captain. It’s about my position. As you know, I have been
performing the duties of the Science Officer on this vessel. However, my
rank and title officially still reflect my original job as a principal
investigator. I oversee three of the Maquis crewmembers, who, through no
fault of their own, do not have enough experience to fill my original
position, and I am often forced to do both jobs at once, serving as my own
assistant. Therefore, I think it is only fair that my position and rank
reflect the duties that circumstances have forced upon me. In short, I
would like my personnel record to list me as the ship’s science officer with
its corresponding rank of lieutenant.”
“I see.” Janeway sat back. *Such brashness in one so young.* Jemison
was right, though. She had been doing the jobs of two people; three, if you
counted the instruction she gave to the three Maquis after hours. Further, her
own Academy record showed that she deserved the position more than anybody,
graduating with distinctions in zoology, botany, exobiology and environmental
geology. Still, her manner was abrasive and disturbing.
“I am curious, Ensign; have you discussed this with
Commander Chakotay?”
“No, Captain.”
“And why not? You know that he is responsible for initiating crew
assignments. You should have gone to him first.” Janeway found herself
becoming irritated.
“I am aware of that, Captain, but I would prefer not to consult him on
this matter.” Hannah’s voice and manner were defiant.
“And why is that?”
“I’d rather not discuss it, Captain.”
“I’m afraid that is not good enough, Ensign. Mr. Chakotay is your
commanding officer, and I expect you to regard him as such. I will not have
this crew separated into Maquis and Starfleet; this ship cannot operate that
way. From now on, you take up your requests or problems with the Commander.
Do I make myself clear?”
Jemison returned Janeway’s gaze. “Yes, Captain.”
“Now, I will discuss your request with him, and he will notify you of
my decision. Dismissed.”
Hannah rose and left the ready room. She had taken a chance going
directly to the Captain, but she couldn’t face *that* man. It was bad enough
to know that he was on the same ship, but her commanding officer – never!

After dinner, Hannah settled down with a PADD to review the experiments
her co-workers had completed. The sound of the door chime made her look up.
“Come in.”
The door opened to reveal Commander Chakotay.
“Yes, Commander?” She drew herself stiffly to attention, intending to
have as few words with this man as possible.
“Ensign.” He tried to control himself, but his eyes betrayed his
anger. “I would like to know why you found it necessary to go over my head
to the Captain about your request.”
“I thought it would expedite matters.” Her manner was cold and aloof.
“Don’t lie to me, Ensign. The Captain seems to be of the opinion that
there is a problem between us, and I would like to know if she is correct.”
His dark gaze studied her face intently.
“The Captain has already admonished me, Commander, and I have agreed
to consult you on future matters. I am sorry to have caused you any concern
or embarrassment.” Her face remained as impassive as her reply.
Chakotay frowned. There was deinitely a problem here, but he knew she
wasn’t about to tell him what it was now. This was going to take sometime.
He shrugged his shoulders and headed for the door. At the door, though, he
paused.
“It might interest you to know Ensign that I was aware of your duties
and had included a similar suggestion in this week’s personnel report to the
Captain. If you had come to me, I would have taken your request to Captain
Janeway immediately, with my complete support.” He shook his head and left
the room.

Returning to his own quarters, Chakotay restlessly paced the floor.
What could be the source of the Ensign’s animosity? He had had no complaints
from the three Maquis serving with her; so the division between the crews was
apparently not the cause. *Which leaves me, and I’d never set eyes on her
before I came aboard,* he thought. Sitting down at his desk, he called up the
crew’s personal history.
“Let’s see,” he muttered to himself. “Jemison, Hannah, Ensign. Born
on Starbase 74. Father: Jemison, Lee, Lt. Commander; Mother: Finn, Anara;
Brother: Jemison, Chandler, Lt., deceased. A regular Starfleet family.
“Graduated the year before Ensign Kim and spent her first year on the
Cochrane before transferring to Voyager. Strange.” He sat back in his chair.
“As a potential science officer staying on the Cochrane or transferring to a
Nebula-class starship would have seemed the better career move. Her brother
died only six months before her transfer, I wonder-” Chakotay sat up and
touched one of the keys operating the viewer. “Lt. Chandler Jemison, temporary
assignment, USS Galileo, runabout class, destroyed in action on the Cardassian-
Federation border. Destroyed in action?” The words echoed through his head.
Suddenly, everything fell into place; her transfer, her hostility,
everything. The one time he had destroyed a Starfleet vessel. It still
sickened him to think about it; the tiny ship bursting into a million
glittering pieces. He was Maquis, but parts of him were still and probably
always would be Starfleet.
Through its own agents, the Commander was sure Starfleet had discovered
who was in charge of the Maquis ship involved, and if Starfleet knew, Jemison
probably knew. Now, she found herself serving under the man who was
responsible for the death of her brother. No wonder she was hostile; he would
be, too, in her position. He switched off the monitor and crossed over to his
bed. He lay down and stared up at the ceiling.
*It isn’t your duty to empathized; you have to find a way to make her
accept you as her commanding officer,* he told himself. Perhaps getting her
the promotion she deserved would be one way to start.

************* **************

“Captain’s Log. Stardate 48764.2. We have entered the Tomari system.
Two planets within this system are Class-M; preliminary scans reveal one to be
rich in geological resources and the other rich in animal and plant life.
I have decided to send a two man away team down to the former while Voyager
explores the latter for possible food sources.” Janeway looked up. “Come.”
Her first officer entered. “You wanted to see me, Captain?”
“Yes, Commander. I have decided that you and Lt. Jemison will beam
down to conduct a more intensive survey of the fourth planet’s surface.
We will return for you within twenty-four hours.”
“Understood, Captain.”
“Dismissed. And Commander, good luck.” She gave him an encouraging
smile, which he returned only partially.

They met in transporter room one.
“Ready, Lieutenant?” Cool and professional, that was the way to be.
“Yes, Commander,” came her terse reply.
He took a deep breath. This was not going to be a easy mission.
“Energize.”
A few seconds later, they materialized on the planet’s rocky surface.
Removing their tricorders, they began their substantial task silently.

Three hours into the survey, Hannah called out, “Commander!” She was
standing by the mouth of a cave. “I think I have something.”
Chakotay hurried over.
“Look at these readings!” Her tone, no longer cold, reflected the
excitement of discovery. “I think I may have found a large deposit of solid
deuterium! I haven’t heard of it existing in such a form before.”
He checked his own tricorder. “I think you may be right; this could
mean a real boost to the ship’s energy reserves. Good work, Lieutenant.”
Before he caught himself, he shot her an approving smile, which she did
not return.
Putting on their arm lights, they advanced into the cave, and began
scanning the walls. The deposits seemed to be located within the rock walls
of several tunnels. Hannah took several samples from the mouth of one of the
tunnels using a laser pick, while Cakotay aimed his tricorder down one of the
opposing corridors. *The ore within the walls is making scanning more than a
few meters difficult, which means Voyager will probably have trouble locating
us if we get trapped in here,* he reminded himself.
“Almost an eighty percent purity rate.” He heard her mutter. “This
should make processing the ore relatively easy. Hey, what the- AAAaahh!”
He turned to see a large clawed paw slash across the Lieutenant’s face
and neck, knocking her to the ground. As the rest of the beast emerged from
the darkness, Chakotay drew his weapon and fired. A howl of pain ripped
through the caverns, and the animal retreated into the darkness.
Running over to where Jemison lay unconscious, he saw that she was
bleeding profusely from the wounds on her neck. Picking her up, he carried
her outside to relative safety. He lay her down on the ground and placed his
fingers on her neck to slow the bleeding. *Damn!* He fumbled one-handed in
the medikit for a medical tricorder. *Damn! If I can’t get this bleeding
stopped, she may die. And I WON’T let that happen.*
Luckily, the readings allayed his worse fears; the slash on her neck
had missed both the jugular and the carotid artery. While the wound was
serious, it was not as life threatening as he had first thought. Taking out
the autosuture and bandages, he began to clean and patch the wounds as best
he could.

Moving her away from the cave and closer to the transporter
coordinates, he began constructing the tiny emergency shelter they had brought
and gathering wood for a fire. Voyager should return in about ten hours, but
with her injuries, he preferred to err on the side of caution. A soft moan,
though, made him return to her side.
“Easy, Lieutenant.” He gently removed her hand from the bandages.
“I’m no medic; so I don’t know how much exploration those wrappings can take.”
She slowly blinked her eyes. “I feel weak,” she slurred. “And my
head hurts.”
“That’s understandable. I wanted to wait until you were more conscious
before giving you anything for the pain; I didn’t want to risk suppressing your
nervous system too much.”
She grimaced as he turned her head slightly to administer the hypo-
spray to the uninjured side. *Off all the people-* she stopped. It hurt too
much to think. She closed her eyes.
“Lieutenant.” He called her back from the darkness. “I’m going to be
setting up camp. I won’t be far away; so call if you need anything.”
*Like hell, I will,* she thought, but answered, “Yes, Commander.”

An hour or so later, Chakotay had a fire going, and glancing from time
to time at his sleeping patient, he watched the smoke weave its way up into the
sky. Memories of fireside ceremonies crept up on him. The smells, the
surrounding darkness, the beautiful spirits within the smoke and flames.
A homesick smile appeared on his lips.
“Commander.”
The sound of her voice made him jump. Going over to where she lay,
he peered into her face. The grey eyes were no longer cold and hostile;
instead, he saw fear. He touched her shoulder reassuringly. “What is it,
Lieutenant?”
“My entire body aches; the muscles are sore, like when you get a
cold, only worse.” Her voice trembled.
He put his hand on her thigh and gave it a little squeeze right
above the knee. She cried out in pain, and he frowned. The muscle felt tight
and warm through the fabric of her uniform.
Grabbing the medical tricorder, he made a quick scan of her body.
“It appears that some bacterial infection has invaded your body.
I can only guess that it came from the animal that struck you. Your immune
system is reacting and trying to fight off the infection. I’ll give you
a dose of antibiotic, but that’s about all I can do until Voyager arrives.”
He looked down at her frightened face. “I’m sorry, Hannah. I wish I could
do more.”
She closed her eyes as he administered the drug. *Oh gods, I’m
going to die; I’m going to die with Him.* She felt tears roll down her face;
she hadn’t even realized she was about to cry. A soft cloth wiped them away,
as a strong hand grasped her own.
“Listen to me, Lieutenant.” She heard him say. “You are going to
make it. I am not going to let you die.”
“Yeah, sure,” she responded. “You just don’t want another Jemison
death on your conscience, if you have one. What are you going to do? Save
me the same way you saved Chandler?” She opened her eyes to see the damage
her volley had done.
Instead, Chakotay maintained his grip and gently brushed her brow with
his free hand. “Lieutenant,” he began softly, staring deeply into her eyes.
“You may not believe me, but I never intended or wanted to destroy the
Galileo. When I quit Starfleet to join the Maquis, I made a promise to myself
to never destructively engage any Starfleet ships or personnel except in
self-defense or in defense of my crew. And even then, to avoid the use of
deadly force if at all possible. I may not have approved of the way the
Federation sold us out, but I knew too many good people in Starfleet to
want to use all-out violence against them.”
She closed her eyes. Liar. He couldn’t have regretted Chandler’s
death; she had hated him far too long to believe that. “What made you break
your promise?”
“I didn’t.”
Her eyes flew open, burning with rampant hatred. “But you killed-”
“Believe me, Hannah. I didn’t want to destroy the Galileo.” He was
almost pleading. “Yes, I fired on the ship. I admit that, but I didn’t use
full phasers. I swear I didn’t. I couldn’t; our phaser banks and sensors
had already been damaged by their phaser fire. The only way we could’ve
destroyed them was if our blast started a chain reaction inside the ship, but
since our sensors were inoperable, I have no way of knowing for sure.
“Lieutenant.” His voice was still soft, but no longer pleading.
“Not a day goes by that I don’t regret mistakes I’ve made, and firing on the
Galileo was not a mistake. But destroying it was, and it’s a consquence I will
have to live with the rest of my life. I’m sorry; I never meant to kill your
brother.” He released her hand and moved back to the fire.

A little later, he managed to get some fluids in her. Her fever was
starting to climb, as her immune system tried to fight off the invading
bacteria. Covering her with a blanket from the medikit, he watched her
drift off to sleep.
Within a few hours, she was awoken by the uncontrollable shivering
of chills. She was sweating profusely and her temperature had soared to
102.5 degrees.
“I’m-m-m so c-c-cold,” she chattered, as he gave her another dose of
antibiotic, followed by some water.
Chakotay picked her up and moved her closer to the fire before laying
down beside her and taking her in his arms.
“Don’t.” She protested, placing a weak hand against his chest.
“Don’t what? Warm you? Forget it, Lieutenant. At this point, I don’t
care if you hate me or not, but you will let me hold you. That’s an order.”
He stated brusquely and pulled her trembling form into his chest.
Eventually, she stopped shaking and dropped off into a hallucinating
sleep. He heard her murmur disjointed phrases and occasionally call out names.
Mom, Dad, Chandler, the Captain, and finally, his, not Commander, but Chakotay.
He had never heard her speak it before; calling him only Commander kept things
that much more impersonal between them.
Raising up slightly, he reached for the tricorder. She was still
sweating and felt much warmer than earlier. *Damn! 104 degrees.* She was
successfully fighting off the infection, but her body couldn’t stay at this
temperature much longer. She was already partially dehydrated. He had to find
some way of cooling her down.
A quick reconnaissance sweep of the area revealed a small pond about
twenty-five meters away which was reasonably free of contaminants. Remembering
old folktales about immersing people in ice, he returned to the camp and
carried Hannah down to the water’s edge.
Removing her boots and uniform, he cut off her turtleneck so as not
to disturb the bandages. For a moment, he stared suddenly aware of her
nearly nude form. Because of her vitriolic attitude and his own command
position, he realized he had never really noticed her as a woman before.
“Paetah,” he swore at himself, ashamed of his instinctive response.
“Poocuh,” he continued as he removed his own boots. Gathering her up into
his arms, he carried her into the cool water and suspended her vertically
in his grasp so that she was submerged up to her chest.
For several minutes, Chakotay held her this way; her lifeless arms on
his shoulders, her head against his chest. Then, as he felt his own limbs
begin to go numb, she stirred. He brought her back to the shore and
wrapped her in the blanket. He was gathering the clothes when he heard
Janeway’s familiar voice.
“Voyager to away team.”
“Chakotay here, Captain. Two for emergency beam to sickbay on my
coordinates.”
“Acknowledged.”

“Report, Doctor.” The Captain strode quickly into the ship’s medical
facility.
“Lt. Jemison has suffered a serious bacterial infection as well as
lacerations to her face and neck. However, thanks to Commander Chakotay’s
care,” The Doctor nodded toward the Indian. “I believe she will make a full
recovery. Her temperature is currently at 100.7 degrees and continues to
descend at a normal rate. As soon as she gets stronger, I will begin
reconstructive surgery on the cuts. Now Commander,” He turned to address
Chakotay who still stood by the side of the biobed. “In light of your drenched
clothes and chattering teeth, I recommend that you have a hot bath and change
before I have to treat you for pneumonia.”
The Captain looked at her barefoot first officer and smiled. “That’s
an order, Commander. Good job.”
“Yes, Captain.” With a parting glance at his patient, he left.

Hannah looked in the mirror. She had just taken a shower and dried her
hair. The four pink streaks on her face and neck were barely visible, and in
a day or two, they would even disappear. The Doctor had done a superb job.
She put her hands in her hair and held it up. *Should I wear my hair
up or down, today?* she wondered, watching he shoulder length hair fall softly
down to frame her face. It would be her first day back on duty since
the attack.
Her subordinates had visited her during the past few days to bring her
up-to-date on what was happening, and she had been gratified to learn that her
discovery of deuterium had allowed Voyager to double, almost triple, it’s
energy reserves. Even the Captain, herself, had stopped by to commend her for
the discovery and see how she was doing. The only person who hadn’t been by
was the Commander.
The Doctor had said that he had come by once when she was sleeping in
sickbay, but not after that. To be honest, she wasn’t sure whether to be
relieved or not; eventually, they would run into each other, and she did owe
him her life. If he had been the one injured, would she have been as caring?
The answer she sometimes received disturbed her.
*How do you, how can you apologize to someone who saved your life in
spite of how you treated them?* she silently asked her reflection. Over the
past few days, she had had time to think over what he had said to her, and
she had come to accept that he wasn’t the cold-blooded killer her hatred had
created him to be. He was human, like herself, full of both pride and regret
about his past.
The door chime interrupted her musings. “Come in.”
She stepped out of the bathroom, still wearing her white robe, to find
herself face to face with Chakotay.
“Commander.”
“Lieutenant.” *She’s attractive with her hair down like that,* he
thought as he stepped towards her. He cupped her chin in his hand and turned
her face slightly. “The Doctor has done quite a good job. In a few days, no
one will be able to tell what happened.
“I stopped by to see how you were doing,” he continued, relinquishing
his hold. “It’s my understanding that you are now fit to return to duty.”
“Yes sir,” she nodded. “In fact, if I don’t get dressed I’ll be late
for my shift.”
He looked down suddenly aware of her robe, and he felt a slight flush
creep over his face as the memory of her body flashed before his eyes.
Feeling a little uncomfortable herself, she muttered, “Excuse me,”
before snatching up her uniform and disappearing back into the bathroom.
“Paetah,” he chastized himself under his breath.
“I’m sorry, sir; I didn’t catch that,” she called.
“Nothing, Lieutenant. Just muttering to myself; I guess I’m getting
old,” he half-joked. *Too old to let foolish thoughts affect your job and
cloud your judgement,* he added silently.
“Old?” Fully dressed, she emerged from the adjoining room. “I
wouldn’t say that. You couldn’t be more than two or three years older than
my-” She caught herself, but they both knew what her next word would
have been. She dropped her eyes. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to mention him.”
“Don’t be. He was your brother, and no matter what happens, nothing
will ever change that fact.”
“I know.” She looked up and focused on nothing in particular off to
his left. “It’s just that-”
He could tell what she was trying to say. *Apologizing is never easy,
is it?* he reflected. “It’s okay, Lieutenant. I understand; you don’t have
to say it.”
“No, sir.” She shook her head and gazed at him. “I want to. I-”
She dropped her eyes again and took a deep breath. “I want to say I’m sorry
for how I’ve acted toward you in the past. It was unprofessional and not
how a Starfleet officer should behave. And I also want to thank you for saving
my life.” She looked up and extended her hand.
“It’s all right, Lieutenant,” he said grasping her hand. “You would
have done the same for me.”
“You think so, sir? I’m really not too sure.”
He gave her hand a gentle squeeze before releasing it. “I know so,
Lieutenant. You’re a Starfleet officer, and a damn good one from what I’ve
seen. Your brother would have been proud. Now, I believe you said
something about being late.”
Hannah smiled at him for the first time. “Yes, sir. I’m on my way.”
She headed for the door with him in pursuit.

The End?

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.