<USS Banshee> "Mending Fences"
- From: "Brad Ruder" <GroundZero@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- To: ussbanshee@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Thu, 22 Aug 2002 08:06:10 -0700
by Lt. Joshua Asper
His pace quickened as he stepped off the
turbolift on Deck Two. Josh had just left a rather emotional meeting
with young Ensign D?Vorak. The meeting, per Josh had planned, was
strictly to get information that Josh needed to put together and pull
off perhaps the greatest date ever conceived. Anthony had spoiled
any hope of him achieving that when his emotions, that he kept
bottled up inside apparently, came exploding outward and in Josh?s
Josh was, at first, scared and threatened by
Anthony?s love interest in his best friend, and Josh?s girlfriend,
Sara Crusher. After realizing all that Sara and Anthony had been
through, from the academy to the Banshee, there was proper cause for
Anthony to have feelings for her, they had spent a considerable
amount of time together.
Many things crossed through the
emotionally torn mind of Josh Asper during the last moment of that
night?s encounter. Should I protect Sara from Anthony? Should I
allow them to pursue something that they never had the chance to
before? Should I tell Sara that Anthony has feelings for her, even
though Anthony said not to? It was too late to bother his girlfriend
at this hour; he would have to wait for a more appropriate
Then Anthony brought up the Sirrus Five astronomical
display that would occur in a couple of days. Josh had seen the
display before with his parents, before his father took ill and was
bedridden. It was actually the Asper family?s last trip away from
home together. Josh was torn up in several ways over this blast from
Crossing his quarters, Josh proceeded to his end
table that sat against the side of his bed. On the table, among the
rubbish of trash and things of that sort, lie the pictures and
memories of his youth, cut so horribly short by something as eternal
as death itself. The picture was staged against a stark black
background with a star here and there. The blonde hair of the family
set off the picture in a most handsome way. The picture, which
overlooked the ?invisible planet?, was taken when Josh was only
eight. His brother, Jerrad, was only two and being held by Josh?s
Josh took the silver frame and clenched it tightly in
his hands. He leaned back onto his bed, and let the cushion of the
mattress soothe him as he gazed up into the ceiling that housed his
memories, his eyes fluttered for a second and then they
***** ***** ***** *****
The shuttle dropped abruptly from warp as a planet
came into view, barely visible as three suns shown brightly ahead of
them. The shuttle, piloted by Josh?s father, slipped gently and
easily into an orbit around the fifth planet in the Sirrus
?I took your mother to see this when we had just
gotten married, Joshua, it was kind of my present to her.? His
father said as he stepped away from the controls and took Josh?s
mother, Catherine, by the hand. ?It was like we had been frozen in
our own little life.?
?Josh, this is one of only a few
regulated stellar events. It does what it is about to do once every
sixteen years.? Catherine smiled as she took her husband?s hand in
Josh?s father pointed out the front window towards the
planet. Catherine?s eyes darted there and began to fill with tears
as she clutched her husband tighter. Josh turned his own gaze as the
planet began to go from a wholesome black to a light gray.
planet surface began to light up, and sunlight raced over the surface
like some had painted it with a paintbrush. Josh gasped in the
beauty, barely old enough to understand the significance of the
event. He stared into the blackness of space as the planet slowly
entered visual oblivion. Josh smiled and laughed happily as he
looked to his parents; who, in turn, were locked in an emotional
embrace. His mother, one of the strongest people he had ever seen,
was now reduced to tears at his father?s side.
pulled away from his darling wife and took his son in his arms,
?Please show this, in sixteen years, to someone that you truly care
about. Your wife, your kids, anyone that means anything to you, I
don?t care, as long as you show someone. Please? Do that for
Josh nodded obediently, ?Yes, dad, I
***** ***** ***** *****
Josh?s eyes fluttered open and he leaned up on his
elbows. His face was soaked with the salty tears that had drained
from his eyes. The silver frame was still clenched tightly in his
hand and the family portrait still brought back the painful memories.
Painful for the next day Josh?s dad collapsed at his work at the
orbital mining facility above the planet, and was later diagnosed
with the Poxian Measles.
His mother was heartbroken, and
that started the eight-year downhill stretch in his father?s life.
Each day, as Josh grew up and became stronger, Josh?s father lost the
ability to do trivial things and his strength slowly decreased to the
point where he couldn?t even lift his son, in which he would do every
day. Josh was forced to watch his dad, the most powerful man he?d
seen, be decreased to the meat and bones that he was when he
To make matters worse, Josh never had the chance to say
goodbye to his father. A confrontation with a boy who insulted his
mother had forced Josh, for an unexplained reason, to attack the boy
and leave him paralyzed from the waist down. After being sent to the
detention facility in the woods of North Dakota on Earth Josh was
given the horrible news of his father?s untimely death. He couldn?t
imagine the emotional trauma that his mother would be subjected
Pulling himself out of his bed, Josh made his way into the
bathroom. Josh sat down the picture and stared at for a long while,
as if the world was standing still so he could silently mourn for his
family. His mother that he hadn?t seen since he was sent away. He
had talked to her a couple of times, but she really never forgave him
for doing what he did.
He undid his uniform and let it slump
around his waist. He pulled his gray shirt from his pants and then
hoisted it above his shoulders. He tossed it casually on the
bathroom counter and stared at himself in the mirror. His hair
seemed tossed and unclean, his face had gone unshaven for a couple of
days due to lack of working hours on the bridge. His let the rest of
his clothes drop and he carefully climbed into the sonic shower,
where he felt at home and free from the world?s struggles and
Now, even in his sanctuary, he still felt troubled
by the upcoming astronomical event. His eyes kept gazing from the
ceiling to the picture that was framed on the tabletop. Josh
deactivated the sonic shower and pulled a towel onto him. Stepping
out, Josh picked up the picture again and examined it, as if it would
have changed in the few seconds that he had stepped into the
A tear came into his eye, and he quickly brushed it
away. He set the picture down and threw on some sleeping clothes,
consisting of silk boxer shorts and a white tank top. Josh took a
few steps into his living quarters and walked over to his console
that sat atop the desk, which hadn?t been cleaned in sometime. He
sat behind the console, contemplating what he really should do, and
if he were going to do something that he would regret
Taking a deep breath, and suppressing a cry, he
activated the communication relays and directed a communiqué through
subspace to Kessik IV. He dreaded whom he would see, but
nonetheless, he realized that it was time to rebuild the bridges that
he had burned a long time ago.
Jerrad, his younger brother,
popped up on the screen and perked an eyebrow towards his brother.
?What the hell do you want??
?Hello, Jerrad, it is so nice to
see you. I haven?t talked to you in a long time.?
crap, Josh, what do you want??
?Is Mom around?? Josh asked
trying to avoid any further insults towards his own flesh and
?No, Catherine isn?t around.?
?What the hell,
Jerrad? You don?t ever call mom by her real name, that is so
disrespectful.? Josh?s anger began to overtake him, which he had
problems with before and began focusing on the larger
?Josh, she stopped being your mother when you turned
your back on us and went and paralyzed that kid. You stopped being
an Asper on that day eight years ago. Now, what do you want from
us?? Jerrad kept the cold front up and all Josh got was harsh
Josh picked up the frame of the family picture and
held it in front of the viewscreen. Josh pointed to the baby being
held by Josh?s father. ?Do you see this child Josh?? Josh knew that
he was about to gain the upper hand. ?That is you, Jerrad. And that
is our mother, and that is our father, and that right there is yours
truly. We were a family and all I want to do is talk to my
Jerrad smiled and shrugged, ?You just said it, Josh.
We WERE a family, until dad died and you were stupid enough to let
your anger out. Go away, you aren?t a member of our family. As far
as I am concerned, Josh, you don?t deserve the honor of being my
brother.? Jerrad stood up, pushed down the viewer so all that Josh
could see was the black screen.
In the background Josh heard
another conversation commencing. ?Who was that?? ?That wonderful
son of yours, mom.? ?Josh called?? ?Yes, I told him that we didn?t
want him to be in our family.? ?You told him what?? ?That is what
you always say, mom.? ?I am mad at him, but at least he
?I?m still here, mother.? Josh said aloud, knowing
full well that his mother would hear him. Sure enough, his mother?s
beautiful face graced his gaze. He looked at her and turned his head
?What do you want Josh??
?I only want one
thing?? Josh let his words linger as a tear fell from his eye onto
his cheek. His mother turned her head to question his motives, or
secret agendas. Josh let loose as his eyes began to flood with
tears. ?Mom, I?m so sorry??
?It?s OK, Josh. I?m sorry too??
His mother realized, and Josh did too, it was time to fix the past.
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