Onward With Love…
Chapter Six: Good Morning to Bad Rubbish!
By Yuki Wildstar
With much appreciation to Fred Kopetz , he encouraged me to go for it. With his collaboration in this story about Derek and Nova it has turned out to be better than I thought it would. His vision with detailing and added script has made this so much more fun than expected. You and Gail ROCK! Thanks for everything and I am so blessed to have a partner in writing.
I. THE CALM BEFORE THE STORM….
The Vicinity of Planet New Gamilon
EDF Space Battleship Endeavor
April 30, 2205
“Good morning my wife, did you sleep well?” Anthony asked Denise. “I think that we should be getting ready, we are expected on the flight deck in about an hour.”
“Umm do we have to, can’t we stay just a little longer?” Denise asked in a sleepy voice.
“As much as I like to stay here with you my love, we only had leave for the night. And if we don’t show up for duty the Captain will have our asses.”
“I guess we must go. I need to shower first, how’s the water on this side of the ship? I hope it’s not like our part of the ship. Freezing coming out and scalding by the time you finish. Can you look for my boots? I think I threw them under your bunk.”
“Are we starting to give orders? We haven’t been married more than a day and you’re already being pushy,” Anthony laughed. “You go take a shower…I’ll look for your boots. And make it snappy I still have to take a shower too.”
“Why don’t you come join me and we can get out of here faster?” Denise purred.
“Maybe we shouldn’t….it might take longer,” Anthony said, while stepping into the shower with his new wife.
Nova was up looking out into the stars when Derek got up. “Good morning my love, what are you doing up so early? Is everything okay?” Derek walked over to her and wrapped his arms around her waist from behind.
“Just couldn’t sleep, I could not get back to sleep after that bad dream, and, besides, I had too much on my mind to go over before the fleet comes. How did you sleep, Derek?”
“Fine, I slept fine. Are you sure you’re okay, Nova? You look like hell! Do you want to sleep in a little longer?”
“I’m fine, Derek, you know how I get when a mission starts my mind just runs crazy about what needs to be done…I shook that nightmare off. You know me,” Nova said looking tired, she was up since 0300 hrs. She did not want to tell Derek that she had not been able to go back to sleep since that disturbing dream she had experienced. Miscarriage, she thought. God, I hope I never have one….
The part of the dream in which the enemy had said she had had a miscarriage was the part that scared her the most; it had scared her even more than the sickening torture she had dreamed about. But, she was not about to tell Derek about this; she felt she did not need to worry him. She would later reflect many months later that if she had told him about her fears, a lot of unnecessary pain and anguish for them might have just been avoided. But, right now, she just did not feel like sharing her feelings with him. She was just too tired, and she thought he would think her fears were “stupid”…besides…they had a mission to begin, and she felt he didn’t need to be burdened with worrying about his wife’s state of mind and health.
“Have you taken a shower yet?” Derek asked with a grin
“Yes, Captain, so you’re out of luck this time” Nova laughed at him. “I’ll meet you on the bridge my love I have some things to go over before you get on the bridge. I love you” She gave him a kiss and left for the bridge.
That was strange…she was acting really weird this morning. Wonder what’s wrong, other than that nightmare she had? I’d better keep a really close eye on her. Derek thought to himself.
Derek took a quick shower and got dressed as quickly as he could. He grabbed his pea coat, cover and made his way to the bridge. “At ease everybody, Pratt, any word on our fleet?”
“No sir not yet”
“Captain, if my calculations are right they should be making their last warp here soon.” Nova said, hiding a small yawn behind a hand on a face that looked a bit more pale than usual.
“Thank you, Lieutenant Commander. Please let me know once they pop up on radar,” Wildstar said, looking at Nova with concern.
“Lieutenant Pratt, once they clear their warp please make contact with them. I wonder who they’re sending? Who do you think it is, Sandor, do you have any ideas? It’s not like the EDF to not tell us who.”
“Sir I just got them on radar,” Nova interrupted. “Range, twelve megameters, speed, eighteen space knots and slowing to station-keeping attitude. They are at RPX-231, standard orbit around New Gamilon.”
“Sir, I’m making contact with the Fleet Captain now,” Pratt said. “Putting them on the screen now, sir.”
“Hello, Wildstar, glad to see you again,” said a familiar voice as a sandy-haired face, looking different in a Captain’s peacoat, materialized on the screen. It was Homer Glitchmann.
“Homer, I’ll be damned! So it’s you that they sent! Great!” Wildstar smiled at the thought that the old Star Force was coming together if not on the Argo or the same ship, but at least on the same fleet.
“Permission to come aboard, Captain?” Homer asked.
“Permission granted, any time Homer,” Wildstar laughed “I’ll meet you on the flight deck. Sandor, take the bridge”
“Yes sir, Captain leaving the bridge!” Sandor called out.
Wildstar waited on the flight deck for Homer’s Cosmo Hound to land. It’s been a long time since he had last seen his old friend. He couldn’t remember the last time everyone was together. He knew that there was something that they need to do when they got back to Earth, namely, go back to Hero’s Hill and pay their respects to their fallen comrades.
When the Cosmo Hound landed Homer walked out to greet his friend. “Wildstar how are you, didn’t expect me I’ll bet? I had them keep it a secret because I wanted to surprise you.”
“Homer! You old dog…how have you been?” Wildstar said, shaking his hand with a pat on the back. “I guess EDF didn’t have much to choose from considering they sent you.” They both laughed.
“Well I guess I’ll have to bail you out as always. What mess did you get yourself in this time, Wildstar?” Homer laughed.
“It's good to see you Homer, glad that they sent you, how is Wendy?”
“She’s doing great, still preparing for the wedding and she sends you her love. Once we are all back we are getting married and we are expecting you two there. Oh, let me introduce you to my Deputy Captain, I’m sure you’ll remember …...” Homer turned around to introduce his Deputy Captain.
Wildstar couldn’t believe who was standing there. “Lieutenant Commander Tolbert, sir...” She said with a grin as she stood there smiling at him.
“Yeah, we’ve met,” Wildstar said while looking away, I cannot believe this, Nova is not going to like it one bit. But at least she’s not on the same ship…
“Shall we head to the bridge and talk over your plans. Wildstar?” Homer pointing upward.
“Uh yeah, right, this way Homer, Lieutenant Commander Tolbert,” Wildstar wanted to just choke her. Crap, how the hell did she manage this? She must have someone behind the scenes pulling strings for her…little tramp!
Homer looked around the ship amazed at the size of her. “Wow, Wildstar this is some vessel, how does she run?”
“Pretty good, it still has some kinks that we have to work out, but it’s an okay ship. Pretty much the new add-ons are the problems but we are working on them. So how are things back on Earth?”
“Well you’re all abuzz back there. With talk about you teaming up with the Gamilons how could I stay behind, and a lot have volunteered for this one, including Lieutenant Commander Tolbert here. This is history in the making and we are all here to fight off the Bolars and Cometines. We finally get a chance to finish them off this time, Wildstar.”
“I hope so, they’ve been a pain for both Gamilon and Earth.” Wildstar said trying to shake off the shock of Tolbert being on this mission again.
A few minutes later, they all walked onto the bridge. “Hey Sandor, how’s it going?” Homer asked when he saw Sandor.
“Homer, you sly fox how did you get stuck here?” Sandor shook his hand and laughed. He then turned to see Lieutenant Commander Tolbert standing behind him. Sandor looked from Wildstar to Tolbert and then back to Wildstar. All Wildstar could do was look down and then towards Nova, who was busy taking care some reports for the meeting.
“Didn’t want you two to have all the fun!” Homer looked around at the bridge. “Whoa, Wildstar this is some piece of work. Looks like the ship almost runs itself.”
“Yeah, a lot of the systems are combined and simplified so that we have fewer personnel on the bridge. If you ask me, it’s not the same as if we were on the Argo. We ran the ship, not computers. I manage to disconnect some systems, thanks to Sandor here, but mostly minor ones. If you think this is big you should see the Captain’s quarters; it’s like some goddamn hotel suite. It annoys the heck out of me.” Wildstar explained.
“I have to admit Wildstar she is a beauty” Homer still admiring the ship.
“Well hello there, Lieutenant Commander Forrester,” Tolbert leaned over Nova.
Nova looked up and saw Tolbert standing there. Nova snapped. “Tolbert! What the hell are you doing here?”
“Oh, I’m here to help with the Gamilon union. I’m the Deputy Captain of the Galaxy II, I’m serving under Captain Homer Glitchman.” She grinned from ear to ear.
Nova wanted so much to slap that grin off her face, but she kept her composure “So you manage to weasel your way out here, so what are your intentions now? Let me guess you figured you come out here to make amends and then try making your way back into Derek’s life like a little worm? Right? Well forget it, he’s not interested.”
“Why don’t we let him decide for himself?” She smiled at Nova.
“Just stay out of my way and don’t even think or dream about working your way back into Derek’s life!” Nova spat. “Are we clear on that, Lieutenant Commander?”
“Not at all, I wouldn’t dream of it,” Tolbert turned and walked near Wildstar and Homer.
All the while Wildstar was looking in their direction wondering what was being said. Tolbert walked towards them with a grin that could kill. He looked over to Nova and saw the frustration in her face. Okay, she’s not too mad I hope, he thought. But I need to get her off this ship ASAP before it gets ugly.
“Uh, Homer why don’t I show you the Captain’s quarters? Lieutenant Commander Tolbert, you can wait here with Deputy Captain Sandor,” Wildstar didn’t want her near his room. And the way Nova was looking, he knew it was best to keep them apart. “Lieutenant Commander Forrester, can you please join us?”
“Yes, sir” Nova stood up and walked over to Wildstar and Homer giving Tolbert a stare.
They all went to Wildstar’s quarters so they can talk.
“Shouldn’t Tolbert be with us?” Homer asked as the three of them walked into the huge cabin alone.
“Not yet I like to catch up on old times. We’ll discuss that later in the conference room” Wildstar was trying to keep her out of his room and away from Nova, they didn’t need to be in the same room together.
“Whoa, Wildstar is this your stateroom? This is more for the President or even for Desslok, where can I get one like this? I got stuck with a ship from the 21st century, it seems every time I turn around there something that has to be fixed.”
“That doesn’t seem like a good thing Homer, are you and your crew ready for this mission? We will need working ships, how are the other ships in the fleet?”
“Don’t worry about it Wildstar, we’ll be able to keep up with this cruise liner of yours…” Homer joked with him.
“She can be a tad much, but she’s a good ship” Wildstar was embarrassed about his too-plush ship.
“So what’s the story with you and Tolbert? Do you think it would have passed me by? Homer wondering what happened with them, He read her jacket and saw that she was on the Endeavor with Wildstar and for some odd reason, which was not specified, she was removed from her duties.
“I’d rather not get into it now. It’s personal business.” He looked at Nova, who nodded once, with a grim look on her face and a set jaw.
Homer notice the look, “Nova…so does that mean keep her far away from you, too?”
“We’ll get into that another time,” Nova said in a controlled, tight voice. Then, she smiled formally and said, “It’s nice to see you, too Homer, how are Wendy and the wedding plans? I’m sorry I can’t be there to help with them, but being here with Derek right now to help is a bit more important.”
“I guess that’s a mind your business and let’s get on with the mission?” Homer said.
“Could be,” Nova said while playing distractedly with one of the curls by her cheek while she possessively rested a hand on Derek’s thigh, while thinking, If she gets near you again, Derek, I might just grind her into mincemeat and sweep her out a damn airlock! But Homer does not need to know that…
Nova kissed Derek, who kissed her back after whispering…”Yeah…keep her away…that’s the best thing all around.”
“Good boy,” Nova whispered back.
Homer saw what was going on, and he just said, “Okay, maybe we’ll get into the Tolbert Story another time, you can’t blame me for being curious, right?” Homer knew when to back down.
“Right,” Nova said. “Now, umm…on to more pleasant topics.”
“So who else is gracing us on this mission?” Wildstar asked.
“Well, Captain, the EDF sent you 5 frigates, 3 battleships that I am the commanding officer of as the Captain of the Galaxy II, 3 destroyers, and a whole load of fighter pilots. They pretty much almost went all out for you. I can’t believe that those Bolars and what’s left of the Comet Empire have teamed up. So how much of the Bolar Federation’s area has Desslok taken control of?”
“It looks like 97 percent of it, they do have a major base in Sector 8, we’ve manage to destroy one on planet Mira but Desslok feels that there is another major one in that area,” Wildstar said.
“Derek, do you trust Desslok? I mean I know he is a friend now but things can change. He is not a man to stand back and let Earth take control of his space.”
“We are not here to over throw the man just to stop the Bolars and the Comet Empire from coming into our part of the galaxy. And if teaming up with Desslok means getting rid of them, then so be it. They’re more of a pain in Desslok’s side than in ours, and before they come completely over to our part of the Galaxy, it’s best that we take care of it now rather than later.”
“I see your point, Wildstar” Homer said. “Well, maybe we need to go to the conference room and get this meeting started?”
“Yes let’s go, Nova, you don’t have to be there you pretty much know what’s going to be said,” Wildstar was hoping she’d stay behind to avoid conflict with Tolbert.
“No, I’ll go, I promise I’ll behave, its best that I be there anyway just case you need help with some of the new radar systems,” Nova said with defiance
Wildstar smiled at the thought of Nova trying to behave with Tolbert. “Well then, let’s get this meeting under way. The sooner we start, the sooner we get these boogers out of our part of the Galaxy.”
“Let’s get this started then, Lieutenant Commander Forrester…ladies first,” Homer bowed and extended his arm, opening the door.
“Thank you Homer, I still see that you have some manners” Nova smiled at him.
“Anything for the lovely lady.”
They all gathered in the conference room for their meeting. Pesci and Howard walked in together holding hands and laughing. Tolbert and Sandor stood to the side going over some reports on Bolar and Cometine bases. Howard was the first to see her standing there, she pulled on Pesci’s hand and pointed in her direction. “Oh shit, this is definitely not good, I wonder if Forrester knows she’s on board?”
“I’m sure she does, but I’m surprised that Tolbert is still alive. After the crap she tried on the Captain,” Pesci said, still shocked that Julie had the nerve to come on the ship.
A second later Wildstar and Nova walked into the room with Homer. Howard walked over to Nova, “ Are you okay? I can’t believe that she had the nerve to come back on the ship after what she pulled.”
“Lieutenant Howard, this is not the time. Let’s just get this over with, okay? I don’t want her here any more than you do,” Nova said in a low voice, upset with the fact that she was on the Endeavor.
Howard knew that Nova was trying to stay professional for Wildstar’s sake. She could see that Wildstar was trying to stand as close to her as possible, glancing her way in between the speeches. The tension between Wildstar, Nova and Tolbert was thick enough for Homer to notice. He made a point to himself to find out what the hell happened with the three of them. This would not be good for the mission, he knew that Wildstar and Nova could be professional, but he wasn’t so sure about Tolbert. He had been having a great deal of trouble with her. There were many run-ins with her on the Galaxy II where he had forced to question her judgment. Many times, he caught her trying to approach him inappropriately, not taking into consideration that he was in a relationship with Wendy…and he had been frequently been forced to put her back in her place. If she had tried that with Wildstar, and Nova had found out, that might explain everything.
Sandor also saw what was going on, he notice that Wildstar and Nova tried to stay professional throughout the meeting. He also notice that Tolbert continue to stare in Wildstar’s direction and frequently glanced in Nova’s direction with vicious, piercing eyes. I hope that this doesn’t affect the mission, he thought. I wonder what she is thinking right now? Why would she take this mission knowing that she was relieved of a command post from the Endeavor by the Captain himself?
“Sandor can you explain the status of the Bolar base in sector 8, please?” Wildstar said, looking his way.
“Uh, sorry what was that?” Sandor was snapped out of his thoughts when he heard Wildstar’s voice.
“Are we disturbing you, Sandor? We do have a mission to do here, and I need your thoughts on the Bolar base. Would you like to share what’s on your mind or is it not related to this mission?” Wildstar sounded annoyed that everyone’s minds were focused on his and Novas’ personal life rather than on the mission.
“Yessir. In two days we will be in Sector 8, we already know of the base on Mira and that base was destroyed, but Desslok and his fleet also have come across another base here on planet Baynet. Baynet is a small planet at the far end of Sector 8, about the same size as Earth, but with no atmosphere. It’s pretty much a dead planet, considering that light only hits it for 6 hours a day. If there is a base there we will only have 6 hours to detect it visually. IQ-9 believes that it is on this part of the planet and if he is correct, then, it will take up to those 6 hours to flush them out. The trick is to spot them before they spot us. If they detect our ships first, then that can cause them to hide further on the planet and it will take longer taking them out.”
“What do you suggest that we do, Sandor?” Homer asked
“Well Wildstar, I guess this is your part,” Sandor said, handing the rest of the plan over to him.
“Well, you know if our fleet shows up there all at once…then they will detect us right off the bat. We will have to create a diversion, with the help of Lieutenant Lugin and his crew. He will patrol the area in hopes to flushing them out. We will then send in a small recon group under the command of Sergeant Booker and his team, to locate the base and report it back to us. Sergeant Booker, it is up to you to disarm that base so as we can get close enough to destroy it. Lieutenant Lugin will send over some of his men to help you with the mission. This will be a joint force so there will be no prima donnas on this mission, understood?”
“Yes, sir,” Booker replied.
“Very well then we leave for Sector 8 in 20 hours, everyone to your stations and check over everything, I don’t want any surprises.” Everyone saluted and left for their post. Only Wildstar and Nova stayed behind with Sandor.
“Nova, are you going to be alright with her being here?” Wildstar asked.
“I have no problem with her, as long as she stays out of my way and does her job.” Nova spat back with a bitterness in her voice that Derek very seldom heard from her.
“Derek, I think that Homer should know about what happened so he can assess the situation. If there is going to be a conflict between the three of you, then it can jeopardize the mission. It wouldn’t be fair to Homer to keep him in the dark about what happened.” Sandor suggested.
“Nova this is your call, do you think you can work past this?” Wildstar said while looking worried.
“Derek you damn well know me better than that, the mission is first! I have had enough training to be past all that. Like I said if she does her job and stays on the game plan I don’t have a problem. Sandor…I think you’re right! Homer has a right to know! It’s not good to keep him in the dark. As much as I hate airing our personal lives to him, it is safe to say that if she pulls something, Homer will least have the heads up.”
“I agree, Captain”
“Okay I guess I’ll have some explaining to do, would you like to be there Nova, or would you rather stay clear of this?”
“I think I’ll stay clear of this one. Plus I have something to do,” Nova said as she suddenly came to a decision. She thought, This has to be done for the sake of the mission. I’m sorry, Derek, but…it has to be this way. Nova then turned and walked out.
“Well I guess I’m on my own, Sandor would you like to attend this, or do you have something to do, too?”
“Wildstar I think you are definitely on your own with this one,” Sandor patted him on the back and walked out, leaving Wildstar to stand there and find his thoughts on how he was going to tell Homer.
“Captain, what do I owe this pleasure of you leaving your luxury liner to grace me on my tug boat?” Homer said while laughing. Wildstar flew his Super Star over to the Galaxy II, he didn’t want Nova to be on the same ship with Tolbert, she was right not to come. Not only did Homer meet him on the flight deck but Tolbert was there also.
“I need to speak to you in private, is there any where we can talk?”
“Sure, Wildstar, we can go to my stateroom. Lieutenant Commander Tolbert, please excuse us and please report back to the bridge,” Homer said.
“Yes sir” Tolbert looked in Wildstar’s direction and just thought to herself, I wonder what this is about. Maybe he needs advice on the little Mrs… it didn’t look like they patched too much up. This could probably work in my favor.
Wildstar and Homer walked up to Homer’s stateroom. “Whoa Homer, I see you are a little cramped here, can you even move around in here? Maybe if you get rid of the bunk and desk you might be able to stand without bumping into something.”
“Sorry I don’t have a luxury suite like you. But all I have to do is command a ship.”
“In the words of Lieutenant Commander Forrester ‘Bite me’” Wildstar laughed.
“So what’s up Derek, I guess I’m going to hear the whole story on Tolbert and you?” Homer was intrigued.
“Yeah, we spoke about it, and Sandor and Nova both agreed that it wouldn’t be fair to you to be kept in the dark about this.”
“Sandor is involved with it? Whoa…this has got to be good. So what has my Deputy Captain gotten herself into?”
“A mess, Homer. A BIG mess! As you know from her jacket she was my Deputy Captain for a short time, and yes, I did request that she be removed from my command. Julie and I dated back in the Academy and before we left for Iscandar. Things didn’t work out for us; I was almost ready to propose to her, but then I found out shortly beforehand that she was playing around with someone else. When I tried to confront her, she called it off, I guess she didn’t want to get into it with me. She wound up dating some already commissioned officer, his name was Hartland, Hartfield, or something like that. Some British guy. Julie told me much later down the road that they broke up two years later. Anyway, when she came back into my life, I was shocked to see her standing before me with her orders as Deputy Captain. I didn’t want her there for Nova’s sake, especially since I had wanted Nova as my Deputy Captain for that cruise, but the EDF turned me down.”
“And, as for Tolbert?” Homer said.
her, by the time the EDF sent her to me it was too late. We were leaving the
next morning. I did tell Nova about us but not about our intimacy, I thought it
best not to get her upset over nothing. Well, we seem to be working okay on
board ship…she started a little rough but she picked up pretty good. On the day
“I can see why,” sighed Homer. “That didn’t look good. And, let me guess, Tolbert…?”
“Right. Tolbert didn’t help any by trying to egg her on with innuendo about me and her. I knew than that she wanted more from me and she wanted me back in the sack with her again, and she didn’t care who she hurt in the way. She’s a power hungry bitch who will use anyone to get her jollies.”
“So that explains a lot. Wildstar, she has been coming on very strong to me, too….and a few times, I had to reprimand her. From my understanding she was one of the many to volunteer for this mission. What do you propose to do about her?”
“Well maybe we should both keep an eye on her. I’m not quite sure what to make of her, but I’m sure that she’s up to no good on this one. One thing I do know. Let’s keep her and Nova away from each other, preferably on opposite sides of the universe but that is not likely with everyone working together. I can count on Nova to stay professional, but I can’t vouch for Tolbert. And if she eggs on Nova I can’t say what she’ll do to Tolbert. And who can blame her? Hell, Nova and I ourselves are still trying to get everything patched up.”
“Well I do believe we have a soap opera situation here, Derek, I’ll do my part in keeping her clear of Nova, but there may be times when you have to deal with her. Thanks for the heads up on things, you can pretty much feel the tension in the air with you three together. So will you be staying for dinner or you heading back to the Endeavor?”
“I better be getting back I want to finish some reports before we start heading over to planet Baynet and I’d like to report back to Nova.” Derek smiled like he was on a short leash with her.
“I’ll walk you to the flight deck, then…we can talk over some plans for the strike at planet Baynet.”
In the meantime, Nova herself had come to a decision as she carried a seabag into Denise Howard’s cabin.
“Thanks a lot, Denise for letting me bunk with you, I know this is short notice but with this mission I think it’s better to bunk with you than with Derek. I don’t want him to be distracted from his duties with us living together in one room.”
“Nova, don’t you think he will be mad if you didn’t even talk to him about it? I mean, you should have said something to him”
“I know, but if I try to talk to him about it, he’ll just try to use his ways to persuade me to stay. This is much better. I have to finish getting something from his room, be back in a bit.”
Wildstar walked into his stateroom looking around something is different here he looked more closely and realized that many of Nova’s things were no longer in the room. Wildstar looked in the closet and confirmed that most of her uniforms were gone. Just then the door swung open and Nova stood there looking at him. “What’s going on here…Nova are you leaving and not telling me? I’m a little confused here can you tell me what’s going on?” Wildstar sat there waiting for an answer.
“Oh Derek I was hoping that you didn’t get back till after I was completely out. I’m not leaving you. Not at all.”
“No, then what’s this then?” Wildstar was starting to get mad. How could she not discuss this with me and just leave.
“Derek, I think it’s best that I stay with Lieutenant Howard until this is all over. I don’t want our bumpy relationship to get in the way of the mission. We always managed to stay professional on ship during cruises, and I don’t want this one to be any different.”
“But we could have talked about this first before you snuck out in the middle of the night! RIGHT?” Derek was starting to get mad and Nova rarely saw this part of him with her.
“Derek, I wasn’t sneaking out, I just thought if I talked to you about it you would discourage me from leaving. I’m doing this for us and for how people percieve us. That business with Tolbert…it’s created tons of scuttlebutt throughout the whole fleet. I love you, but I don’t want every single time I step into or out of your cabin analyzed and spread throughout the whole task force. It’s better this way. We’ll still be living together at home, of course. When we get home, we’ll have a lot to catch up on, that’s all,” Nova said with a sad smile.
“I don’t give a rats ass how people see it, Nova! You could have talked to me first, of course I would have asked you to stay but I would have understood too. I thought that at least you would have given me that, Nova! You don’t know how much I miss you when you’re not here. Our last last mission was so hard on me, knowing that you were only a few feet away and that I couldn’t be near you. Just being close to you is just too far away for me. It makes me feel better with you being right next to me in the same room at night. At least then I know you’re safe with me.” Derek had tears in his eyes that made Nova want to cry as well. What was she thinking, not telling him her intentions first? “Besides, you said, Nova, we don’t keep secrets from each other. Are you gonna be the one to welch on me now?”
“Oh Derek I’m so sorry, I just thought it would be better this way, I never wanted you to feel abandoned!”
“Nova, I love you too much and I really want you here with me, especially now. I need you close to me and if it means dealing with the EDF later about it, then so be it. Who knows what will happen, but I’m not taking that chance again with you from the last time. I order you to stay.”
Nova just stood there crying at what he was telling her. She had no idea this would affect him like this. She did the only thing she knew and that was to just give into him.
“So are you going to stay or are you set on leaving me? I promise, I’ll behave myself if you stay. I’ll be as professional as possible, ma’am!”
Nova laughed through her tears and just nodded yes. “Good, then let’s go get your stuff and put it back where it belongs…right next to mine.”
“Oh Derek, I never meant to ……”
“Never mind about that, we have too much to do on this mission anyway then to fool around every other minute.”
“Then at least let Pesci and Howard bunk together, Derek! They also need whatever time they have together.”
“Nova, I’ll see what I can do. But I can’t turn this luxury liner into the Love Boat. EDF would have a field day with us alone. But I’ll see what I can do.”
“Thank you Captain” Nova hugged him and gave him a big kiss. “Well I guess we need to go get your things then, let’s go Mrs. Wildstar.”
When Howard saw Wildstar with Nova, she knew right then and there that he walked in on her moving out and convinced her to stay. “Well I see the Captain won this battle it was nice rooming with you again…if only for an hour.”
“Lieutenant, I’ll see what I can do for you and Pesci on living quarters.” Wildstar said.
“Not too worry sir, I figured that you two have worked many missions on the Argo together and never mixed pleasure with business. And I intend to do the same, I know it’s taken you two all these years to work hard and gain the respect of the crew and I’d like to do the same with Pesci. Nova if you ever need some place to crash, you’re always welcome here with me. Not that you will stay away from her, sir”
“I’m not letting her out of my sight this time. I’m glad that you understand. Thank you Lieutenant,” Wildstar was happy that she was so cool about him and Nova living together on the ship. Especially now that she was married to Pesci.
“So you two kids run along I need my space and you’re crowding me, oh and Captain if you decide to let me and Pesci live together please make sure you let the Doctor take out that deviated septum of his. A girl needs her sleep.” Howard smiled at Nova and Derek.
Derek helped Nova carry her stuff back to his room and placed everything back where it was. “Now no more talk about you moving out, next time make sure you check with me first and see how I feel about things.”
“Yes sir, I’m sorry Derek you’re right, I should have spoken to you first.” Nova looked into his eyes and just wanted to melt into his arms. Something he always could make her do when he looked at her that way.
II. THE STORM BEGINS….
The Vicinity of Planet BAYNET
April 30, 2205
“Princess Devina, please go back to your quarters. You may be the guest of the Bolar Federation but you are here on a Comet Empire base.” General Mencri spat.
“General, it would be nice to see you lose this war that the Bolar Federation and the Cometines have created with Gamilon. Why don’t you just give up and maybe you’ll live long enough to see a united universe?”
Princess Devina was a great descendant of Iscandar. Her mother, Princess Aurora, was the sister of Starsha’s and Astra’s mother Queen Rena. She had left Iscandar years before both planets Iscandar and Gamilon were doomed for destruction. When the Bolar Federation was enslaving smaller planets, Princess Devina’s planet fell into their path. Her mother had her forces fight on to the end, but she died protecting her only child. One of the Bolar Generals, General Hindleman, found Devina hiding in a small closet crying. His heart melted when he saw her beautiful blue eyes and long golden hair. He never saw such a pretty little girl. He snatched her up and brought her back to the ship with him. Since then she has been under the Bolar Federation’s protection, but on a very short leash, as a “guest” (so-called) of the Bolars.
“Is it necessary for you to destroy everything on a planet, must you enslave everyone. You know I hate it when you mistreat the prisoners!” Devina spat out to him
“Princess, if you do not get out of the command center then I will have someone physically remove you. You are a guest and make sure you don’t forget that. I don’t care if you are the daughter of General Hindleman, here you are only a guest, NOW LEAVE!” General Mencri spat out loud.
Devina left with a pout, while thinking, Someday this ridiculous war will be over and the Bolasr and Cometines will be defeated. My dear adoptive father was kind but I cannot stand back and watch this war destroy life on other planets.
“Father, are you there?” Devine called into the telecommunication video. “I need to speak to you, Father! AND NOW!”
“What is it now Devina, I have too much going on here to drop everything and hear you complain about one thing or another,” General Hindleman said. “Your self-righteousness can make a man grit their teeth!”
“Father I cannot stand here and watch while General Mencri attacks unsuspecting ships trying to make their way for a peaceful life on another colony! Father, please stop this now while we have a chance. I’m having one of my feelings again that something will happen on this base that will turn this war around and not in the favor of the Bolar and Cometines. You know how those feelings are always right!”
Although he loved his adoptive daughter very much, she could be a royal pain in the ass. He would do anything for her except give up the fight for the Bolar Federation. He sent her out to planet Baynet where she would be out of harm’s way. But that prove to be more of a pain in the ass then leaving her here with him. “Devina, everything will be alright that part of the galaxy is quite safe and you don’t have to worry about enslaving anything or anyone over there. Just behave and once this is over then shall I send for you.”
“But Father, you don’t know what is going on here! General Mencri is enslaving all those that past…….”
“Enough Devina, please do not call me for minor complaints. Just stay there and when this is all over I WILL SEND FOR YOU. I love you my daughter, but there is nothing I can do about it from here. Now please be a good girl and behave yourself.”
“Yes, Father,” Devina said with a defeated voice. She thought, Okay, father, if you must do what you have to do, then I’ll do what I must do myself! I have to think of a way to get off this stupid dry planet… all I need is a diversion.
“Lieutenant Lugin, are you ready?” Wildstar called into his helmet.
“Yes Captain Wildstar we are all set on this end, we will start the attack in 5 minutes. Once you hear the guns go off you have 3 minutes to get that ship on the ground without being detected.”
“Roger that Lieutenant,” Derek said. “All fighters…we begin our attack in 5, be prepared to cover the Cosmo Hound and get it down safely on the planet. The Epsilon will warp us within feet of the planet’s atmosphere right after their pilots and ours start the diversion. Howard and I will protect the Hound until it clears their raiders. Howard, are you ready?”
“Yes, sir, I’ve just been waiting for this ever since I graduated out of flight school!”
“Just be careful, Howard, since I don’t want to give Pesci any bad news when I get back. And that’s an order!” Wildstar said. “Lieutenant Delvechio, Lieutenant Pesci how are things on your end?”
“Everything is on schedule, Captain. We are ready with both our pilots and the Gamilons.”
“Very good then, get ready to warp start countdown Lieutenant Lugin, it’s all in your hands now.”
“All ships and pilots get ready for countdown. Starting countdown 10 …. 9 …. 8 …. 7 ….. 6 ….. 5 …. 4 ….. 3 …… 2 ……1 Warp.
“General Mencri, a fleet of Gamilon fighters and battleships have just come up on the raider screen!” his raider tech yelled out
“What! Get our pilots out there. Fire all guns! Secure all quarters. Attention all crew attention all crew the base is under attack. Secure your station.” General Mencri yelled out.
“Okay everyone here we go, prepare to descend onto the planet” Wildstar yelled into the helmet.
They descended down to the planet while the Gamilons distracted the Bolar on another part of the planet. Wildstar and Howard took front line to make sure that the Cosmo hound landed safely. It was quick and smooth no enemy fighter were guarding the area. “This is Sergeant Booker we have made our landing in the designated area. All is clear and secure, we are now leaving the hound and making our way to the enemy base.”
“Good Booker, breaking off radio contact, good luck. Emergency contact on channel 19” Wildstar confirmed with Booker.
Devina was in her bath back near her room when she heard the first waves of the guns going off. This is the perfect time for me to get the heck out of here. They’ll be so busy fighting off whoever and won’t notice me gone for hours. I can take one of the emergency ships and go undetected. Devina dried off, got out of the bath, and dressed in her usual blue gown and sandals after picking up a bag that held a few of her possessions. Then, she ran to the emergency pod room and slipped into one of the ships. She pressed the release button and the ship took off.
“Captain did you see that, it looks like an escape pod, what should we do?” Howard yelled into her helmet.
“Lets' hang back and follow it, it could be a civilian in there.” Wildstar replied.
“Roger that, sir” Howard said.
They followed the ship as it exited the atmosphere. “Do you think we should make contact with whomever is inside?” Howard asked.
“Yeah let’s give a try, call it through Howard” Wildstar said.
“This Lieutenant Commander Denise Howard of the Black Tiger Squadron from the Earth Federation space batttleship Endeavor! Who are you, and why are you fleeing the base? Our guns are trained on you and we demand an answer! OVER!”
Oh no this is not good at all Devina thought to herself.
“Answer me, who are you and why are you fleeing the base. You need to answer or we will be forced to bring you down. OVER! RESPOND!”
“No, no please don’t shoot I’m only try to get away from the Bolar Federation!” Devina cried out.
“Very well then, we are going to hook you up with a laser tracker guide and we will drag you to our ship.” Howard was curious at who was piloting the shuttle.
“Oh please don’t, I’m just trying to get away from them!” Devina pleaded.
But it was too late Howard and Wildstar had the tractor beam already attached to her ship.
It took them 15 minutes to get her ship aboard the Endeavor and once they landed they opened up the hull of the ship. Wildstar was shock to see someone that looked like Starsha, the same blue eyes and long golden hair she stood at 5 foot 6 with a thin figure. “Starsha? Is that you”
“I’m sorry who did you call me? My name is Devina, Princess Devina, that is. I am the daughter of General Tobo Hindleman. Who are you?” she questioned with fear. After all she has never seen anyone other than the Bolar people and Cometine.
“I’m Captain Derek Wildstar, you’re on my space battleship, known as the Endeavor. This is Lieutenant Howard…she is the one that has been speaking to you. I’m sorry but you look just like someone we all knew many years ago. Queen Starsha was her name. She was the Queen of Iscandar.”
“I have heard of Iscandar that is where my mother was from, she was the queens sister,” said Devina.
“But how are you from Bolar descent, then?” Wildstar asked.
“My mother and a few others left Iscandar many years before there was any danger with both Iscandar and Gamilon. My people, were crusaders looking for life on other planets. They made refuge on the Planet Urbia, but when the Bolar Federation began seeking new planets to conquer my planet was one of the first they sought out and conquered. My mother was murdered by one of Generals Hindlemans' officers. My mother hid me in a closet and told me not to come out. General Hindleman found me and showed pity on me. He took me in as his own child and raised me in the Bolar way. I never agreed with what the Bolar Federation has done to those that they have conquered and enslaved, but I have been forced to go along with it. I have fought with my father tooth and nail for him to stand up to this madness that the Bolars are creating, but it falls on deaf ears, I have already warned my father about what will happen if they continue with this, but again he will not listen! My adoptive father is not a good man, but a very evil man!”
“Your highness, I knew your cousin Starsha, she was a great leader and she helped our planet Earth with the Cosmo DNA.”
“Why did she give you the Cosmo DNA? I’ve heard of it, but…”
“Devina, Earth was being attacked years ago by the Gamilons, who also needed a new home. They attacked us with deadly planet bombs that destroyed our oceans and covered the surface of Earth with deadly radioactive pollution. Earth was dying, until we received a message from Queen Starsha to come to Iscandar. There, we retreived the Cosmo-DNA that she gave us, and we removed the Earth’s radioactive pollution that the Gamilons sent to destroy Earth and all its inhabitants so that they could take over Earth as their new home. But that was many years ago, and Earth and Gamilon have long been friends ever since the war ended. Your cousin Starsha was married to my brother Alex, and they had a child named Sasha. They died many years ago, but they still live on in our memory and they are among our greatest heroes,” Wildstar was still shocked at how much she looked like her cousin Starsha, just as beautiful.
“Please just leave me somewhere, when my father finds out that I ran away he’ll move the universe to find me. He’ll stop at nothing and destroy anyone that might hold me captive.”
“You are safe here on the Endeavor , there’s no need to worry about him.” Wildstar tried to assure her. “Lieutenant Howard, please escort the Princess to a stateroom, and make sure she is comfortable. I’ll be on the bridge to check up on our delivery boys.”
“Yes sir, Your Highness, please come this way,” At that, Howard led her to the stateroom.
“Captain on the bridge!” Sandor called out.
“Pratt, get Lieutenant Lugin on the screen…it’s time to pull back our forces. Have we heard anything from our guys?” Wildstar asked.
“Sir nothing yet on Sergeant Booker and recon team, I have Lieutenant Lugin on screen, sir” Pratt said.
“Lieutenant Lugin, our package has been sent and is now on the way to the destination. It’s time to bring our forces back, now we just wait for our guys on the ground to give us the call.”
“I’ll be waiting for your call and will report the success of this part of the mission to Emperor Desslok, until then Captain Wildstar.”
“Wildstar what did you find out there?” Sandor asked. He knew that they encountered a ship with a civilian aboard but he never who they found.
“Sandor you’re not going to believe this, but it turns out that the passenger on the ship is a cousin of Queen Starsha! She is the daughter of Princess Aurora, Starsha’s aunt, and her name is Princess Devina! She has been with the Bolar Federation since she was 4 years old. She was raised by a General Hindleman as his own child, but she looks just like Starsha!” Wildstar explained.
“Are you sure Derek, it could be a trick!” Sandor was suspicious.
Wildstar just sat there remembering how she looked. “Sandor, it’s like looking at Starsha all over again. It’s like seeing a ghost she has the same eyes and the same face, not to mention the long golden hair and even the same kind of blue gown. I don’t think this is a trick, I have Lieutenant Howard babysitting her until I figure out what to do with her. Nova can you see if she needs anything? Maybe you can fill her in on her cousin much more then I have.”
“Sure, Captain, will do” Nova saluted and left to see about Starshas’ cousin.
“Wildstar, maybe we can take her back to Gamilon and leave her there with Desslok. It is too dangerous for a young lady like her out here; at least she’ll be safe there with him” Sandor recommended.
“I was thinking that also, but if her father is like what she says he is he’ll be going after her. That would mean Desslok would be putting his planet in more jeopardy then it is now. I don’t know Sandor it’s a lot to ask of him” Wildstar was trying to decide what was the best option for her.
“Lieutenant Pratt, put me thru to Desslok on Gamilon. Right now!” Wildstar ordered.
TO BE CONTINUED…