Starship Voyager – The Alien Adventures — 7 The Holocom

The present novel is merely Fan Fiction.

No commercial interest is pursued.

© Aliki Archimedes, 2019

The story of this book is based on science fiction concepts created by Gene Roddenberry, Rick Berman, Michael Piller, Jery Tailor, Bryan Fuller, Brannon Braga, Nick Sagan, Ken Biller, Michael Okuda, Rick Sternberg and many others.

Copyright for all humanoid characters and Star Trek technology at Paramount Pictures / CBS.

Multiplication and distribution for commercial purpose are not allowed.


II. Searching for the Crew

7. The Holocom

Janeway is sitting in her chair on the bridge and stares at the viewscreen with a tense gaze. Over its entire height, the screen shows a brightly shining gas planet with colorful stripes. In front of the planet`s disk, the silhouette of Ceph`s body rises from his hammock, which hangs closely above the level of the navigation table. Five telescope eyes are stretched upward and fanned out towards the screen, four more eyes are bent down onto the control displays and the remaining three are directed backwards at Janeway.
Ensign Lang works at a port console. Elevated in the rear bridge, Seven, E-Bug, and Carey are controlling the readings on their stations.
Carey reports, “The object will appear behind the planet at any moment.”
An object so small that it can only be recognized by its reflected light as a luminous point, appears on the horizon of the planet. Janeway gets up and goes to the helm. She puts her hand upon one of the two arms that have spread over the console and points with the other hand to the lu-minous point.
The viewscreen shows the Voyager quickly approaching the planet while that point expands to a spot and gains contours. Finally, the ship stops in front of the small vessel of cubic shape with rounded corners.
Seven reports, “Its outer hull consists of monotanium. The signature of its technology is clearly Hirogen. This capsule can hold a maximum of one person.”
Janeway inquires anxiously, “What about the bio-signature?”
“Talaxian. It`s getting weaker.”
Janeway touches her communicator.” Captain to Doctor! – We probably found Mr. Neelix in something that looks like a Hirogen escape pod. His life signs are weak. Shall we beam him to sickbay?”
“Not yet, Captain! I want to check his condition on-site first.”
“All right.” Janeway turns her head. “Seven, join the doctor!”
Seven nods and goes to the lift. Janeway turns back to the screen and worriedly stares at the small ship.


Almost the entire area inside the capsule is filled by a coffin-like container with a glazed lid. Cables and hoses are connected to the icy box. Inside lies the body of Neelix, which is clouded by a cold vapor.
Seven and the doctor materialize on both sides of the container. Seven immediately scans the equipment, while the doctor examines the condi-tion of Neelix.
“He is in cryostasis, but his physiological processes are not as they should be in cold sleep!”
“The reason is obvious, Doctor,” Seven replies. “This apparatus uses a gas composition inappropriate for a Talaxian organism.”
“Surely the refrigerant was optimized for Hirogen bodies,” agrees the doctor. “It`s a miracle that Mr. Neelix is still alive!” He touches his com-municator. “Doctor to Captain!”
“Go ahead, Doctor!” answers Janeway`s voice.
“We found Mr. Neelix. He`s in a cold medium that is damaging his organ-ism. In order to treat him, we must take him to Voyager together with the stasis chamber!” He looks around with a contrite expression. “But most devices are housed in the walls of this capsule, I`m afraid.”
“We`ll get the whole capsule into a cargo bay and set up an emergency medical station there,” Janeway replies.

In the casino Torres, Carey, and Seven are sitting at a table eating. Torres is poking in her plate.
“I wish Neelix had been defrosted already! The replicator can serve any dish imaginable, but it can`t taste.”
Carey wonders with a sorrowful and earnest face, “Is it certain that Neelix will be cooking again?”
“What do you mean?”
“The doctor doubts that he can resuscitate Neelix without permanent damages.”
Torres puts her spoon next to her plate and looks past Seven, to the gas planet visible through the casino window.
The door opens and Peri appears. He has slipped the flimsy ball shells of his new glasses over the two hemispheres of his eyes. Their adaptive optics lends the facets an additional shine. Looking around he recognizes the three colleagues at their table. With erected front segments he walks to them, carrying a small device in his hands. At the table, Peri places a new holoemitter next to Carey. The bowl-shaped device has been reduced to about eight centimeters in diameter. Its circular boundary is formed by a narrow ring set with the projecting holo-diodes. The central area is designed as a trough shaped like an imprint of Star-fleet`s communicator badge.
“Oh Peri, let us finish our meal first!” laments Carey.
Torres raises her index finger. “Lieutenant Carey, have you forgotten the captain`s latest directive?” She shakes her finger. “When a new crew member raises a concern, the old crew member has to dedicate itself to new one until it understands the request and can cooperate!”
“Aye, Lieutenant!”
Carey pushes his jaw to the right and his plate to the left so Peri`s device has more room. Peri pushes a button. A white surface appears. From left to right, differently colored circles and triangles are arranged on it, in the order of the rainbow colors. Above there is a black circle, below a black triangle. With a fingertip, Peri draws colored circles up to the black circle and colored triangles down to the black triangle. Pushing a reset button, he restores the original arrangement and shifts the hologram directly in front of Carey.
Torres encourages him, “Come on, Joseph. Show Mr. Peri that you can do it too!”
Carey`s finger stretches into the hologram and he moves the circles and triangles as fast as he can. Then he grabs the holoemitter and places it in front of Torres, grinning.
“Show us if you can beat that!”
“Why didn`t you move them all?”
“What do you mean?
“The deep red ones and the pale-colored one next to them.”
Carey stares incredulously into the hologram.
“You`re joking! There`s nothing left.”
Torres makes pulling movements with her finger. This looks like a panto-mime for Carey. He scratches his stomach.
Seven explains to him, “Klingon perception extends a few hundred na-nometers deeper into the infrared than for Humans.”
“How do you know that,” Torres asks in astonishment.
Seven replies coolly, “There were also Klingons among the drones.”
Torres`s face darkens and her voice turns bitter. “Has this Klingon quality enriched the Borg?”
“Not at all. Their vision was considered inadequate, and they received the same retinal implant as all other drones.”
Surprised, Carey turns to Seven. “Does that mean you see even more colors than B`Elanna?”
“When I was Borg, my color spectrum ranged from 90 nanometers to mid-X-ray.”
She draws Peri`s holoemitter towards her and resets the arrangement. Then she performs the same assignment as Carey did before. A stiffness that strives for distance mixes into Seven`s expression.
“However, this implant behind the retina has been removed mean-while.”
For a moment there is silence.
Then Torres inquires, “Do you miss the lost colors?”
With an irritated movement of her eyes, Seven replies, “I suppose it was necessary, in the context of my … regression to humanity.”

The sliding gate of a cargo bay opens. Janeway enters and goes to the salvaged escape pod. She climbs up two steps and gets inside the capsule. There she stares into the coffin-like cold chamber. Neelix lies in it. His eyes are closed. No muscle moves. The doctor has placed a cannula from the outside to the back of Neelix`s hand and injects fluid with a syringe.
“Have you found a way to get him out, Doctor?”
With wrinkles of worry and a contrite voice, he explains, “Unfortunately not, Captain. Too much water was displaced from his tissue by the cryofluids. If I tried to remove the cryogenic agent, I would simultaneously have to introduce water into the interior of each individual cell; otherwise, the cells dry out immediately and the cell membranes collapse. But it`s not possible to induce water because I cannot warm Mr. Neelix`s body further than minus 30 degrees for that process.”
“Why don`t the Hirogen have this problem?”
“I have examined one of their corpses. In their cells there is a particularly high concentration of glucose and salts that bind water at the molecular level. This allows them to retain far more cellular water molecules during the exchange of body fluids.”
He pulls the syringe out of the cannula.
“I have tried to introduce salts from the outside, but I did not succeed in bringing them inside the cells. The diffusion rate through the membranes is just too slow at these low temperatures.”
With a solicitous look at the frozen body of Neelix, Janeway lays her hand on her communicator.
“Captain to Torres, Seven and Carey. – We must meet with the doctor in the briefing room immediately! It`s about Mr. Neelix.”

On the bridge, Seven and Carey leave their stations and walk towards the entrance of a side room on the port side.
On his way, Carey tells Lang, “We`re in the conference room. Take the bridge, Ensign!”
“Aye, Lieutenant,” she confirms.
Lang goes to the OPS console controlling the internal systems. At the tactical workstation, E-Bug moves his stylus in a small hologram. In a virtual representation about 30 centimeters across, which is floating in front of him, he moves the icons of food.
At the helm, Peri has erected next to Ceph and supports his front body on the console. Above the table of the helm there are two holograms next to each other which appear to be the same. In one of them Peri opens menus and moves icons with his fingers; in the other Ceph tries to imitate Peri`s operations with the tip of his tentacle.
Lang casts a glance at the two and turns back to controlling the ship`s internal data. Entering from the lift, Janeway and the doctor pass Lang on their way to the briefing room.
Suddenly, Peri appears on the ground next to Lang. He stretches up to the level of her station. Lang takes a step back and then cautiously approaches him again. Peri holds a storage can in one of his four hands. He removes two emitters from it. He places one close to Lang, the other in front of himself. He switches on both emitters. Their holograms pop up.

In the conference room Janeway, Torres, Seven and Carey sit around the central table. The doctor stands at a large display on the wall that depicts a drawing he is using for his report.
“I`m sorry. I don`t see any way of saving Mr. Neelix with the medical means at my disposal.”
For a while there is an awkward silence. The doctor sits down at the table. Finally, Janeway looks around.
“You heard the doctor. Time is pressing! Any suggestions?”
“If we had the technology of a Borg cube at our disposal,” considers Sev-en, “it would be possible to use modified nanoprobes to induce the missing water molecules into the cells at the molecular level and simulta-neously remove the refrigerant.”
“Can we modify your nanoprobes accordingly?”
“Not with the limited resources available on Voyager.”
Again, oppressive silence spreads until Torres suggests, “Can`t we just beam Neelix out?”
The doctor shakes his head. “As I told you, removing Neelix from cryostasis is not possible. His organic structures would defrost immediately, and the coolant would kill him!”
“I got that, Doctor. What I meant is: not only beam Neelix out of the cold chamber but out of the entire state of cryostasis.”
Janeway frowns. “Explain that!”
“The transporter captures a person at a subatomic level, dissects it and then reconstructs it anew at another place. If we modify the restructuring routine so that the refrigerant is removed and replaced by water, and if at the same time we take care that the thermal state of Neelix`s usual body temperature is induced -”
“Are you aware of what you`re suggesting?” Janeway interrupts Torres darkly. “That would be a serious violation of the directive never to inter-fere with the transporter process to change the physical or mental condi-tion of the user. Not only cloning, but also any other kind of manipulation of persons is strictly forbidden!”
Seven raises her eyebrows. “May I remind you, Captain, that Mr. Neelix has already had an unusual transport experience before I was on Voyager – together with Commander Tuvok.”
In tense silence, Janeway stares into Seven`s big eyes. The door opens and Lang appears, accompanied by Peri.
“Excuse me for disturbing you, Captain. Mr. Peri is trying to show me something, but I don`t quite understand -”
“This is a bad time, Ensign!” Janeway replies harshly.
“I know. I just didn`t want to misunderstand something again.”
“All right. Go back to your station! We`ll see what Mr. Peri wants to show us.”
“Thank you, Captain.” Lang leaves the room.
Peri straightens up. He circles the table and places holoemitters he takes out of his can, in front of each of the persons present.
Amused, Torres notes, “Everyone gets his own …”
“I showed him how to operate the replicator,” confesses Janeway, with a slightly tortured look.
Peri activates Janeway`s emitter. He opens a menu. From this he draws the portrait icons of the four humanoids present. He shifts all four por-traits to the symbol of a shuttle. Immediately the holograms of the other emitters on the table pop up and all show the same representation. Peri stretches out to Carey`s hologram and taps Carey`s icon next to the shut-tle with his finger. It turns green in all holograms on the table. Next Peri opens a drawing of the ship and moves the sub-element of the bridge to the center. He magnifies it by moving two fingers. Then he pushes the icon of Janeway to the captain`s place and the icons of Ceph, E-Bug, and Seven to their stations. Torres also reaches into her hologram and magni-fies the list of the crew icons.
“Look, he`s loaded holo data from the entire crew into his memory!” She scrolls through the list of images. “Here is Tom! And Chakotay!”
She pulls their images to their places on the bridge, which can be seen synchronously in all open holograms. Janeway scrolls as well.
“My God, this is Kes -”
The doctor also looks at Kes`s 3D portrait. Then he reflects.
“I don`t want to tear anyone out of their memories, but -”
Janeway raises her head. She stands up and looks at Torres.
“You`re right, Doctor. Let`s get Neelix back!”
Janeway directs her two eyeballs to the facets of Peri`s eyes and puts her hand on his second segment.
“This is a very nice tool!”
The other humanoids rise from their chairs as well. They all leave the room. The door closes behind them.
Peri remains back alone. He looks after them. Finally, he turns his eyes to the briefing table. All emitters are still active. Not a single one was taken along.

While E-Bug observes the sensor displays on his station with twitching eyes, Ceph is still investigating the functions of his new holoemitter. Peri comes out of the conference room. He walks to the captain`s chair and deposits an emitter there. He then goes to the lift and leaves the bridge.
Shortly thereafter the displays disappear in Ceph`s hologram. A picture of Voyager pops up instead. The same image is projected by Lang`s emit-ter at the OPS. Remote in space two planets float in the activated holo-grams. Their distances to Voyager are indicated in light-years. The icon of an alien ship appears between the planets.
Three of Ceph`s eyes swivel backwards to E-Bug. His stylus sketches the trajectory of the alien ship in the open holograms. The vessel`s course is not heading to Voyager but runs between the two planets.

In the transporter room, Torres has opened the cladding of the controlling station and carries out programming to modify algorithms. She has connected an external device to a transporter module via a cable.
Janeway`s voice inquires from the communicator, “Captain to Lieutenant Torres. – Are you advancing, B`Elanna?”
“Just finished, Captain. The molecular exchange routine is programmed!”
She pushes one last button, then she breathes deeply.

In the rescue capsule, Seven uses the tricorder to control the cryogenic apparatus.
Again, Janeway`s voice calls. “Captain to Seven. – Is everything ready at cryostasis?”
“Systems are at normal functions, Captain.”
Seven looks through the glazed lid at Neelix`s body.

In sickbay, Janeway and the doctor are standing next to a treatment table. They look at each other tensely.
Janeway gives the order: “B`Elanna, start the process on my mark, … energize!”
They stare at the empty sickbed. The doctor is holding an injector in his hand. Suddenly Neelix`s body begins to materialize, in a process that takes longer than usual. For a moment he lies motionless as if he were dead. Then he begins to wheeze and cough. The doctor makes an injec-tion at Neelix`s neck. He breathes more calmly then. Slowly his little eyes open under his wrinkled forehead and blink evading the light. Janeway bends over him. She puts her hand on his shoulder.
He stammers, “– C-Cap-tain –, d-do we live?
“We are alive, Mr. Neelix. We – do – live!”

On the bridge, Ceph draws a line in his hologram with the end of a ten-tacle. The line reaches from Voyager`s icon to the other side of the de-picted nearby gas planet. Lang observes the same line – as if by magic – emerging in the image of her own holoemitter, as well as in those at the captain`s chair and at E-Bug`s workstation. Then she observes on the screen as Ceph starts the impulse drive flying the ship behind the gas planet. There he stops again. She worriedly touches her communicator.
“Lang to Captain!”
“What is it?”
“Mr. Ceph has flown the Voyager to the opposite side of the planet.”
“I`m on my way!”
In his holoemitter, E-Bug zooms back, away from the gas planet and out to the scale of the long-range sensors. The course of the alien ship is now visible again in all four active holograms on the bridge. Invisible to that vessel, Voyager lies covered behind the gas giant.
Janeway steps out of the turbolift.
“We`ve just covered a distance of four million kilometers, Captain!” re-ports Lang.
“What was the reason?”
“I think Mr. Ceph told us the reason, but we weren`t listening.”
She points to her own hologram and to the one at the captain`s place. Astonished and thoughtful Janeway sits down on her chair and begins to occupy herself with the holographic communication instrument. Finally, she looks at the trough in the central area of the holoemitter. The outer contour of the trough corresponds to that of the communicator badge. Janeway removes it from her chest and places it upon the hollow. The badge engages in perfectly. Then she puts the holoemitter with the communicator in its center on her uniform.

In sickbay, Neelix tries to sit up. The doctor shifts him back onto the sickbed by his shoulders.
“You must lie down, Mr. Neelix! Your body needs much more time to regenerate.”
“I must tell something to the captain … Something very important … But I don`t remember what it was -”
“A partial loss of memory is normal in your condition considering what your cortex structures have gone through.”
Once more, Neelix rears up. “But it`s extremely important!”
The doctor tells him off, “Believe me, the calmer you keep and the less you disturb me during your treatment, the sooner your memory will return!”
He injects a drug into Neelix`s throat, whereupon he sinks back onto the bed. His blinking eyes slowly get smaller.
Janeway`s voice speaks from the communicator, “Captain to Doctor, Seven of Nine, Torres and Carey! – At our meeting in the conference room you forgot to take something important with you. Please get it and always carry it with you in the future! – Janeway out.”

The starship Voyager floats above the border between the day and the night side of the gas giant. Thinly pronounced and only weakly perceptible a ring system glitters below it. In the distance there is an orange-brown moon. Radial ejections are visible on its surface and tiny fountains are rising above its horizon line.

From her ready room, Janeway enters the bridge and goes to port. There Peri is standing next to Seven. She demonstrates to him the operations of the OPS console.
“How are you doing with the training?” inquires Janeway.
“It won`t take long until Mr. Peri masters the controls of the internal systems operations as he has repaired most of them. In fact, I`ve discovered some new features that we should let him explain to us, Captain.”
Janeway raises an eyebrow and frowns. “We`ll have to update quite a number of features in the ship`s specification. As soon as we`ve found the crew again, we`ll take care of that.” She takes a look at Peri`s erected body segments. “We should think about seating furniture adapted to the anatomies of our new crewmen some time.” Janeway raises her index finger against Seven. “Don`t say comfort is irrelevant!”
“It is not – as long as it serves efficiency.”
Janeway nods, with a sideways shaking component of her head move-ment. She goes to her chair. She sits down and touches the narrow ring surrounding her communicator. A holofield pops up in front of her.
“Captain to all hands!”
On the bridge, all personal holoemitters are activated automatically.
“I want to first describe our situation – understandable for everyone – and then discuss how to proceed. The computer will try to translate all lingual communication into the visual language of your holocom. So please express yourselves as clearly as possible to avoid misunderstandings.”
Janeway opens a prepared holographic film.
“As information for our new crew members, I`ve prepared this clip.” She starts it. “Nine weeks ago, Voyager was attacked by two Hirogen ves-sels.”
The film shows sketches of the two Hirogen cruisers. From them, phaser beams are flashing to a model of the Voyager.

In main engineering, Torres and Baxter are standing in front of an active holocom.
“One of their ships was destroyed,” Janeway`s voice explains. The ship`s image is struck-out with crossed lines. “The other ship has abducted two thirds of our crew.”
The crowd of icons of the abducted persons moves from Voyager to the second Hirogen ship. It flies away to the edge of the hologram and disap-pears from the image area.

In sickbay Neelix and the doctor observe the captain`s report. Neelix gets increasingly nervous.
“We`ve found Mr. Neelix already,” Janeway`s voice tells with warm joy. His face appears next to the Voyager icon.
“Where the others are, we do not know.” Her voice becomes quieter and at the same time darker and more determined. “But we are not going to rest until we`ve found them all!”

At the helm, Ceph`s crowd of eyes surrounds his holocom. Janeway`s tone sounds more sober again.
“To what direction shall we turn to begin our search?”
Janeway reaches into her 3D image and pulls the Voyager successively in different directions.
“Have they been taken to this star system from where we`ve received life signs, … or to that system?”
Oriented in parallel both of E-Bug`s tube-eyes stare into his holocom.
“Too much time has passed to search for a warp signature. And our at-tempts to extract flight routes from the fragments of the wreck`s computer data failed.”

Lying on his sickbed, Neelix broods with a desperate and dogged expres-sion. Suddenly, he pinches his eyes together.
“Wait, Captain, … this is Neelix speaking. I remember … I was on one of the Hirogen ships!” He presses his elbows against the bed and lifts himself up. “Their captain mentioned something about merchants they wanted to meet, … I cannot recall for what reason.”
“Were you on the same ship as our people?”
“I don`t think so, Captain. I never saw one of our crew there. They kept me as a cook. I was to –” his face changes to disgust and horror “… They ordered me … to prepare parts of corpses … Then I heard shooting … There were dismembered Hirogen … I was running through their ship with a rifle! I believe I fired … at equipment -”
“Did you sabotage their systems?” Janeway asks.
“Maybe, I think I tried … They didn`t pay much attention to me, I was just a dwarf to them … just a cook. They were afraid of something.”
“Then maybe it was you, Neelix, who paralyzed their shields!”
Neelix`s face shows joyful amazement. The doctor turns a broad grin towards him and pats him on the shoulder.
“Apparently the Hirogen never read Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson. Otherwise, they would have known that the ship`s cook should never be underestimated!”

On the bridge Janeway smiles amused. She turns to the data of the long-range sensors that are displayed on the viewscreen of the bridge as well as in the holocom.
“You may tell me more later, Neelix. First of all, we need a course!”
Seven points to the ship E-Bug has located. “This vessel is moving be-tween the two planets. It may be transporting goods. Even if it would not belong to the merchants Mr. Neelix mentioned, they could still provide us with information about the two planets.”
Janeway nods. “Any other suggestions?”
“I think Seven is right, Captain,” declares Torres`s voice. “Those planets won`t fly away while we contact that ship!”
Janeway raises her head. “Proposal accepted! – End of discussion.”
She touches her holocom. Its projection goes out, as well as all other holocoms on the bridge. Janeway turns back to Seven.
“Show Mr. E-Bug how to calculate an intercept course with warp 8, de-rived from sensor data about the alien vessel. Transfer the resulting coordinates to Mr. Ceph!”
Seven nods and steps to the tactical console.
Shortly thereafter she reports, “Contact in twelve hours and thirteen minutes.”
Ceph notices the new heading coordinates on a helm display. Janeway looks at the three eyes pointing at her and nods. A moment later the screen shows how Voyager flies around the planet until it is in launch position.
Sitting in her chair Janeway raises her upper body. Her eyes glow in antic-ipation as her finger touches the display next to her armrest to send a starting command to the helm.
En —
In a flash, the stellar points on the screen stretch into stripes and the ship shoots forward at warp speed.
–gage!” Janeway concludes belatedly, with an irritated twist of tone in her voice and a wrinkle between her eyebrows.


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