<USS Banshee> "Searching for Perfection"

  • From: "Brad Ruder" <GroundZero@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: ussbanshee@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 30 Dec 2003 21:05:47 -0800

?Searching for Perfection?
by Lieutenant Joshua Asper
& Ensign Telsia Ehling

It hadn't been long since the engagement was made final between the two lovers. The time was perfect, the feelings were flowing with a certainty in each of them that neither had felt before, and the link that connected them had never been stronger; it was exactly as Josh had dreamed it would happen. As he held her hands, standing on that snow-capped hill, he looked into her eyes with a dedication that most would envision as complete perfection. She had torn into his world from a long since forgotten past and turned his life upside down, but managed to be with him through every step of recovery and rekindling. She was his soul mate.

Josh sat in the comfort of his quarters - their quarters - and watched as Telsia playfully messed with Cameron's blonde hair. He would watch on in amazement, even when they were oblivious to his presence, and wonder just why he was blessed with such a wonderful woman and such a beautiful son. He almost felt unworthy of such an honor, but Josh took it in stride as just another thing in life that couldn't be explained. In all honesty to himself, Josh would think on moments like that, it wasn't worth the explanation.

In that instant Josh stood to his feet, drawing Telsia's gaze. After taking a breath and breaking through a silence that seemed like an eternity, Josh knew it was finally time. As opposed to their engagement it wasn't the right time or place, but he would make it perfect. "Telsia, grab Cameron, there's somewhere I want to show you and something I want to tell you." With that simple statement he reached out his hand for her, for them.

He looked so handsome standing there. It was a wonder that they had finally met each other again after all their time apart. What they had was true love and Telsia wasn't about to do anything to mess with that. Picking up Cameron, she stood and took his hand in hers. "Where are we going?" she asked, happy simply to be with the two loves of her life.

They walked, hand in hand, out into the corridor. For the first time in a long time, he didn't care about the turned eyes, the locked gazes, or the inner scrutiny that people were hiding within themselves. To Josh it was no longer about putting on a show, but being absolutely true to himself. "There is someplace that I've not been in a long time. Someplace beyond these walls, beyond these people, but second to no place in the galaxy. Finally, there's someone that I want to share that with."

She smiled over at him and placed a small kiss on his cheek. She wanted answers, wanted to know what was going on in his mind but was not about to push him to giving answers until he was ready to give them.

The doors loomed ahead and slid apart with a familiar hiss as the trio walked onto the holodeck grid. The glowing yellow walls lined the walls and the metallic components glinted with a sparkling effect in the light. Josh smiled as he tapped the console on the wall; it beeped and chirped after receiving his commands. "Computer, activate program Asper Kessik Home Gamma."

The dull Starfleet structure came to life as the computer sounded its acknowledgment. The tiny room expanded out into what seemed like endless miles of wilderness. Josh looked at tree groves that went on for as far as the eye could see, and green pastures that rose out of the ground in arrays of various colors and shades. What struck Josh the most - even though he'd played the program on multiple occasions - was the immense colonies and machines that jutted out from the foliage like a spot of black paint on an artist's green canvas. "Welcome to Kessik IV. My home."

A small gasped escaped her lips as she look around at Josh's home planet. "Oh my, Josh. I always wondered what your home planet looked like. Thank you," she whispered to him as she kissed him once more on his cheek. "Will you show us around?" she asked as she tried to keep Cameron's hands from grabbing her hair and pulling hard.

"Of course." He started down the slope and pulled Cameron from Telsia's arm and hoisted him effortlessly onto his shoulders. It was good to have them by his side as he explored the slopes of the outskirts of his home. He walked by a rock fort against a rock face. He pointed, carefully holding onto Cameron's other leg, "That's where my friends and I built our first fort. Fort Kessik we called it. We use to play that the Klingons were invading and it was the last stronghold for Starfleet interests in this sector. We always got the loser kids to play the Klingons."

Laughing, she listened to his stories and took in the sites. It was a complete wonder, having Josh show her his childhood and listening to his stories, even Cameron was smiling and laughing; she wasn't sure, though, if he really knew why he was. She knew that they made a beautiful picture.

They continued walking through an outer encampment, "This is where our local militia stayed. They were a bunch of extremists of some faction that we eventually had removed. It was fun to poke fun at them, it was our goal to always get them to fire their phasers into the air to 'gain order'." Josh continued through the area and into an alley that was enclosed by high walls from buildings on either side. "This is the living sector of the city, where all of the people who just migrated stayed. Those with Starfleet ties got areas closer to the central core."

"Where did you live? I want to see your home."

"Typical Starfleet housing, I'm afraid." Josh moved through another area and out into a central courtyard. Metal posts stood like markers on the four corners. The trees swayed in what little breeze that there was, but the posts remained solid and unmoving. They stopped in the middle of the courtyard and Josh pulled Telsia close. He reached over and tapped the console that was embedded in a tree. "Look at this, this is what made me want to be a pilot."

The blue and sunny skies faded into nothing as blackness took its hold on the area. The darkness surrounded them and the sky turned sour as white speckled dots littered the horizon. The moons came into view and their craters could be seen and, as luck would have it, a shooting star was passing slowly through the planet's orbit and attracted the eyes of the people below. "I spent my whole childhood looking up to the stars, it was only right that I be able to fly among them."

Her arms found their way around his waist as she looked up at the sky. "Oh Josh," she gasped out, "this is amazing. "

He deactivated the console and the blue skies and the sun reappeared to them. They walked down another alley and out into a large forum area. Vendors lined the streets, many hollering out to get people's attention to suck them in and force them to try, buy, or promote their products - most of which were helpless rip-offs that Starfleet was only allowing because they wanted to remain in good standing. "The marketplace. Some of the people here were true to their word of not eating synthesized foodstuffs. They'd grow and eat their own. My mother ALWAYS made fresh food."

They turned down a narrow street and small children ran around in circles, fancying what seemed like a new ball, but none seemed brave enough to pick up the item and actually play with it. Josh had seen Cameron exhibit some of the same behavior, he surmised it was the innocence of a child that no grown up could comprehend. He stopped short and looked at a large building and sighed, staring at a sign that he'd forgotten. "Logan, Catherine, Joshua, and Jerrad welcome you to the Asper's," he read aloud, "welcome."

Josh's house stood before her; the sign on it surprised her. "Do you miss it at all?"


She turned to stand in front of him. "We are starting a new life together Josh. If you want we can go and live here again. We can be so happy, I know we can." She reached up and laid a hand on his cheek. "I love you Josh."

"No, I don't want to return her. I miss it, yes, but that in itself is all the more reason why I can't come back, I can't give into that yearning. Too many bad memories. My father died in this house. My mother died in this house and we launched her off into space right over there," he pointed to a hill surrounded by trees with a stone spire as the pinnacle to the mound, "and this is where I fought with my mother and this is where I lost her. It's not worth coming back to."

Telsia listened to what Josh said, her heartache for him and what he had to go through. Tightening her arms around his waist she looked up at him and at her smiling son on his shoulders. "I love you Josh and I'm sorry I brought back all those bad memories. We don't have to ever come back here if you don't want, just know that I am willing to follow you wherever you need to go."

"I know," Josh said as he looked at her, "but there's more to a relationship than following one person. My father once told me that relationships are like two-person bicycles. If one person doesn't pedal it works, but it's a hell of a lot harder. I don't want things to be like that. That's why I've decided to put in my transfer orders to Commander Andros."

"Your transfer orders?" She moved away from him in order to better see his face. "You?re transferring? Where to? Is it possible for Cameron and I to follow you?" So many questions were running through her head and she was starting to panic slightly.

He placed a hand on her face, gently running it down her cheek, "Of course. That's why I've decided it's time to go. I've waited all my life to find such bliss and I won't let anything - and I mean anything - ruin it. I've already scoured the database for openings on ships. The USS Evenstar, Galaxy-class, needs a qualified engineering officer like you. We'll be better there."

"The USS Evenstar?" She thought for a moment. "Well it has a nice name," she said, trying to make herself seem very excited and happy about their possible move, but she wasn't fully. Telsia knew that Josh loved the USS Banshee; he belonged here and he was only transferring because of her and Cameron. "Will you be happy there Josh?" she asked, wanting the truth from him.

"Of course."

"Okay Josh," she moved closer to him again. "I guess I need to put in my transfer papers as well. How long until we know if we can move?"

"You'll be second assistant to the Chief Engineer and I'll be happily sliding into my night shift job in security." Josh smiled as he turned and began to walk back the way they had come. The surroundings had become less and less beautiful as the conversation continued. He didn't want to give up what he had, but he figured it was time to start thinking of someone other than himself. "Shall we get home?"

She laughed lightly. "We don't fully have a home yet but we will." Telsia smiled at the idea of being able to have a real home, one that her and Josh would be able to really raise Cameron and any other children they might possibly have. "It will be nice to be able to raise Cameron on a Galaxy-class ship. We will be happy." She linked her arm with his and smiled up at him.

Josh nodded. "Yes, it will be nice to raise him on a place so big with other children."

She stopped him with a hand on his arm, "you are happy to be moving aren't you?"

He turned, unable to say it out right. He wasn't thrilled to be leaving the place that he called home, but it wasn't about him anymore and he'd finally faced that. "If you're happy then I'm happy, Tel, that's all that matters now. You say you'll follow me anywhere, but the truth is that I will follow you everywhere." Josh managed a smirk before looking at his feet.

Her hand moved up to cup his cheek, "I don't want you to be unhappy or to just follow me without thoughts for yourself. We both need to be happy for this to work right. I want you to be very happy, I love you." Her fingers lightly traced his brow, cheekbones and lips.

"We can't have both, Telsia, and you know that."

"What do you mean we can't have both?" She pulled away from him completely. "Why can't we have both?"

"There's no place that I'd rather be than right here and we can't be together here." He felt as if he was speaking to a wall. They'd gone over the situation so much that it was beginning to get tiresome of knowing that there was only one way out and one way to be together. "I don't know what else to tell you."

"Urgh," she let out a sigh of frustration. "I know we can't stay here, at least not together and I also know that you would rather stay here then anywhere, that you would be so much more happier here then anywhere else. I know all of this and I understand all of this. What I don't understand is why you are going to do something that won't make you completely happy. You should stay here if this is where you are happiest, Cameron and I can transfer to another ship, where we are needed and accepted." Telsia was pissed off and frustrated with both herself and Josh. She turned around and stormed off, leaving the holodeck and heading back to Josh and her quarters.

Josh ran as fast as he could with Cameron on his shoulders to catch up with her. "I love you Telsia, stop. There isn't a place I'd rather be then with you and Cameron. Yes, I may not be overjoyed with the situation, but that's something I'll deal with. Every new place involves getting use to and I'm more than willing to give it a go." He moved back to the console, "How much do I have to do? Computer, delete current program from database memory." Within mere seconds it was gone from memory and existence. He looked at her with that look of helplessness, "I'm ready to move on, Telsia, but I want to move on with you at my side. We'd need a miracle to have our cake and eat it too."

"Well I can't give you a miracle. All I can give you is a son and myself and a transfer to a ship that you might not be totally happy on. Then again you never know, you might be more happier on the USS Evenstar then you are here, you never know but what I know is that I want you to be happy and if I could give you a miracle, you know I would." Sighing she looked around the corridor and noticed that people had stopped to look at the two of them. Her face grew to a deep red. She lowered her voice and moved closer to him. "I'm sorry Josh, I should not have yelled at you or argued with you. I'm sorry." She quietly left his side again and moved down the hall alone, trying to get her thoughts in order.

Josh followed her and walked up besides her, "This'll be good for us, I know it will be. At this point we have no other direction to go but forward. We'll take it one step at a time and that's the way it'll be. I love you, and that is what I need you to understand. I'd walk through fire to just be able to see you. It's time for me to move on with my life." He knew the words he said would sound hollow, but he meant every one of them.

She stopped and turned to look at him once more, "but I don't want you to do something that you will end up regretting later in life or possibly resenting me for being the reason you left the Banshee to begin with. I don't want that, I just want you and I to be completely happy with each other and about life."

He lifted Cameron off his shoulders and placed him on the ground, and watched as he quickly wrapped his arms around the legs of his mother. Josh put his hands on Telsia's face, caressing them slightly; "Do you know what the only thing that I want is?"

She sighed and turned her face into his caress, "I'm guessing it's to be with me and Cameron but that is a very self-centered opinion for me to have."

He shook his head before kissing her in front of the people standing around, their eyes didn't matter to him anymore, and then he looked deep into her eyes - the eyes that he would look into for the rest of his life, "You're right. All I want is you and Cameron. Nothing else matters."


Josh silenced her mouth with a finger, his eyes still searching hers for comprehension, "Nothing else."

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