[USS Vanguard] RPG: All Roads Lead to Beta Lachesis

  • From: Andy Ho <andywoho@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: vanguard <ncv80221@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 1 Aug 2005 07:50:03 -0500

Commodore Dominic Santos
USS Vanguard
After all current Team Two posts

Dr. Xristha Droin sat in her office in sickbay, listening to the
Rachmaninov concerto. She closed her eyes and let the music wash over

Exobiologist Jazz Falcon stuck her head in the door.

"Hey, Xristha."

Droin opened her eyes and smiled. "Jazz."

"Can I help you with anything?"

"As a matter of fact, you could. We have some new crew members, and
T'Del left for Andoria. I want to cross-reference everyone on the
Vanguard for possible donor matches. I was thinking of doing it this

"Why can't we just get started? If we run it through the computers
now, we should finish by tonight," Falcon replied.

The chief medical officer frowned. "It's always such a pain in the
ass," she said. "For some reason, it always needs input from us."

Falcon laughed. "I'll take the first watch, if you take the second."

Droin sighed. "No, that's okay. I'll take the first watch. I'm just
sitting here, anyway. And, hey, that's the mark of any good
supervisor, right? I would never ask you to do something I'm not
prepared to do myself."

Falcon smiled. "Sure. I'm going to grab some lunch in Event Horizon."

Droin nodded. "Meet me back here when you're done. I might you need to
revive me from the coma I'm sure to suffer after all that tedium."

Falcon laughed and left sickbay.

Droin sighed again, turned to the computer display and rolled her neck.

"Computer, pause playback." The strains of the piano stopped.

"Computer, cross-reference current personnel manifest of USS Vanguard.
Look for possible donor matches."

"Stipulate blood or organ," the computer responded.

Droin sighed. She thought of the variations in physiology among the
crew and the task ahead. It dampened her mood.

She rested her chin on her hand and began.

An hour later, Droin glanced behind her at the computer terminal. The
progress meter was showing "18% task completed." Droin made a face and
turned back to her reports. At least the computer hadn't asked her
input for nearly 20 minutes. For that, she was grateful.

The computer chimed.

Droin looked up at the ceiling and turned around.

"Include deceased/missing/transferred crew?" the computer asked.

Droin chewed the inside of her cheek. She knew that T'Del would be
returning to the Vanguard, possibly with a child in tow. Including
deceased/missing/transferred crew would take more time, but if she
didn't perform a thorough search now, she would have to do this again
once T'Del (and child) returned to the Vanguard. And if something were
to happen either to T'Del or the child, something that could have been
prevented had Droin been more conscientious...well, she would never
forgive herself.

"Response?" the computer chided.

"Yes, computer. YES! Include deceased/missing/transferred."


"Yeees...!" Droin said, annoyed.

"Working," the computer replied.

The progress meter decreased from 18% to 11% once the computer
factored in those no longer with the Vanguard.

Droin turned back to her reports. The computer chimed.

Droin slammed the report down and turned around.

"Critical match confirmed," the computer said.

Droin knew that a critical match meant a new match had been made for
one of the senior staff. She frowned. A buzzing started in the back of
her mind.

"Display results, current only," she said.

Droin looked at the results. And her whole world turned upside down.

Dominic Cesar Santos dreamed.

He sat at the bar in Cha-Cha-Cha in San Francisco, a drink in front of
him. He was young again, back in the Academy. His friends, Henny Silva
and Bonaparte Stamper, sat across the bar from him. They wore their
cadet uniforms.

"Hi, Nick," Stamper said, grinning at Santos.

"Blown Apart," Santos said, using Stamper's nickname, "what are you doing?"

"Having a drink, same as you," Stamper said.

Suddenly, Liza walked up to Stamper and Silva. She was young, too,
about the age when they had met.

She put one arm around Silva and the other around Stamper. She
wriggled her fingers at him.

"All roads lead to Beta Lachesis," Liza said.

Santos found himself at his confirmation hearing for the Vanguard in
San Francisco. The only audience members in the rotunda were Qbed and
her father, Q.

Qbed looked at her father with the adoration of a daughter.

Q looked at her and patted her on the hand.

Qbed smiled at her father, then turned to Santos and said, "All roads
lead to Beta Lachesis."

Santos turned around. He was on the bridge of a starship. And there,
sitting in the captain's chair, was Vanier Kung-Lao Lee.

This was the bridge of the Astoria.

From the pilot's seat, Nirsh an'Kharh glanced at Santos. He nodded and
returned to his duties. From the operations console across from Helm,
Ensign Soman Drath glanced at Santos then returned to his duties.

First Officer Tia Halloran caught sight of Santos and stopped pressing
buttons on her armrest computer. She stared at Santos, without

Tails' to Ennien tail swished back and forth. She stood at the
security station, a low growl emanating from the back of her throat.

Lee glanced at Santos, as if seeing him for the first time. The two
men stared at one another across the bridge.

Suddenly, Chameloid Tia Halloran re-materialized next to him. She
whispered in his ear, "All roads lead to Beta Lachesis."

When Santos turned again, he found himself on a dark bridge. This was
the Mirror Universe Astoria. Mirror Lee trained his ruined eye on
Santos and grinned wolfishly.

Kristen Stark, clad in Klingon battle armor, stepped forward. She was
devoid of emotion.

"All roads lead to Beta Lachesis."

Santos woke with a start.

He walked to the refresher in his ready room and splashed water on his face=

"I need to rest more," Santos thought. "I need to stop falling asleep
like this."

He walked into his office area, rubbing his face with a terry cloth towel.

His communicator chimed.

=3D/\=3D "Nick," came Droin's voice. "I need to see you. Right away, please=
." =3D/\=3D

Santos frowned. He heard a strange note in Droin's voice. And Droin
wasn't somebody who was easily flustered.

=3D/\=3D "This better not be one of your ploys to get me in sickbay for a
checkup," =3D/\=3D he joked.

=3D/\=3D "No, Nick. It's not. I need to speak to you." =3D/\=3D

=3D/\=3D "On my way," =3D/\=3D Santos replied.

Santos emerged on the Bridge on the way to Sickbay. He saw Valentine
in the command chair and Lopez sitting next to her. They were
chatting, Valentine looking pleased to be in command.

Santos found that odd and made a note to himself to speak to Kavan.
When he left Kavan in charge, he hadn't expected the responsibility to
be passed to someone else. He almost stopped and asked Valentine why
she was in charge, but something about Droin's tone of voice made him
reconsider and continue to the lift.

When Santos arrived in sickbay, the first thing he noticed was that
Falcon, Counselor E'thexx and Kavan were all standing, waiting for
him. Dr. Droin was in her office chair. Without turning, she studied
her computer, stood up and turned to Santos.

Without another word, Santos walked into Droin's office.

"Nick," Droin said, smiling at Santos. "Please. Sit down."

"I don't like the way this is going," Santos said.

"Nick, it'll be better if you sit down," E'thexx coaxed.

Santos sat. "Why don't you just tell me what everyone in this room
already seems to know?"

Droin swallowed.

"Nick," she said. "I ran a cross-check of all Vanguard personnel, past
and present, this morning, for donor matches."

Santos nodded.

"Nick," Droin said. "Did you know a...Samantha Pacer?"

Nick thought back to the conversation he had had with Trevor Elis,
when both of them were under the influence of the Psi2000 Virus.

[From Andy's "Four of a Kind" - 5/3/2005]

..."I said, 'Sam Pacer.' You remember her, don't you, Nick?"

"Name sounds familiar."

"She was getting married to Carlyle Breckenridge. They were both
students at the Academy. You were with her, he found out, went home to
Alpha Centauri...and killed himself."

"Trevor..." Des said.

"BE QUIET!" Elis roared, breathing hard. "CARLYLE BRECKENRIDGE WAS A


Santos nodded. "We were, uh, intimate. I prefer not to talk about it."

Droin looked at Falcon.

"Nick," Droin said. "Kristen Stark's parents were named John and
Samantha Stark." Droin licked her lips. "Samantha Stark's maiden
name...was Pacer."

The room began to spin around Santos. He felt himself falling out of his ch=

"Kristen Stark was your daughter."

Santos landed on the sickbay floor and felt the wall behind him. He
didn't remember moving toward the wall.

[From Andy's "The Highest Price" - 5/22/2001]

The small shuttle collided with the Astoria's tractor beam. On screen,
Stark threw her head back and closed her eyes. Her look was almost

She was born, and then she was an old woman. She lived. And she died.
She triumphed, and she failed. She cried, and she laughed. Again and
again. She stepped near the ocean and she held her parent's hands.
Kristen Stark felt her tiny hand slipping into their giant ones. And
then she was a young woman, and they looked at her, and their smiles
were kind, warm.

"It's okay," they whispered to her. "It's all okay."

There was darkness for a moment, and Stark felt something she rarely
felt: fear. And then there was light. A light that consumed every
fiber of her, that infused her with love and hope and kindness. And at
that moment, Stark left. And the universe birthed a new star in the


Santos pressed his palms against his face.

He heard Droin's voice in the distance: "...never ran the check on the
new Vanguard crew members until after Stark's death and didn't run it
with deceased crew members when I did.

"We finally ran the tests today."

Kavan, through a fog: "After the death of her fiance, Carlyle
Breckenridge, Samantha accepted the proposal of one John Stark. They
were married very quickly. She was carrying your child. John and
Samantha Stark were recruited into Temporal Investigations Division.
After that, because of the nature of their work, the records grow

"This is what I could find: There was a problem. Samantha didn't
realize she was pregnant. The temporal transport somehow accelerated
the growth of the fetus. Samantha gave birth while in the future, in
Los Angeles, to a healthy baby girl. They named her Kristen, after
John's grandmother. They never knew, never suspected you were the

"They died while on a mission for TID. We're not sure what happened to
Kristen at that point. We don't know much about her history to the
point when she joined the Academy. But it explains how she's your
daughter, and the apparent discrepancy in age between the two of you."

Santos heard all this but refused to accept it. He felt his shoulders
shaking, his body wracked with sobs, and he realized he was weeping
openly in front of his officers. He didn't care.

Droin looked at E'thexx, and the two exchanged a look. E'thexx nodded
once at Droin.

Droin approached Santos with a hypospray and ever so gently pressed it
to his neck. Santos felt oblivion steal over him, and he welcomed it.

Falcon approached Santos and cradled his head in her arms.

"Craig," she said, "help me get Nick to a biobed."

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