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Part of USS Odyssey: Beyond Redemption, Beyond Reason and Bravo Fleet: We Are the Borg

Odyssey – Beyond Redemption, Beyond Reason – 13

USS Odyssey (NCC-80000), Kotaba Expanse, Swallow Nebula region, Delta Quadrant
Stardate: 78428.56
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“Fleet Captain’s log stardate seven-eight-four-two-eight point five-six. Though we were successful in our recent mission against the Borg Transwarp Hub, to err on the side of caution, I’ve ordered the Odyssey to move far away from the nebula that hid it. We’re at maximum warp on a course to rendezvous with the Themis to finish what we started with our Benthan friends.”

“Are there any dangers along our present course?” McCallister asked as he looked up at the massive wall screen in astrometrics. 

Banfield tapped a few buttons and shook her head. “I’m not detecting anything at the moment. For now we are in the clear.” 

“Our last readings of the nebula showed the Malon attempting to flee as the Borg Cube arrived,” Tomaz added. 

“Would either of them be able to retrieve anything of the hub?” McCallister asked. He was concerned that even though they had destroyed the hub, could either the Malon or the remanents of the Borg Collective gain access to materials to salvage to restart rebuilding efforts? If he had a whole fleet of starships, he would undoubtedly feel better about leaving in such a hurry. 

Tomaz was confident in his response. “We used the maximum yield in our tricobalt devices. All that would have been left is pure dust.”

“Very good, commander,” McCallister said. Though he felt assured by Tomaz’s response, when it came to the Borg, he didn’t like to take chances. That said, McCallister was still bothered by the Malon. 

“We’ll keep monitoring long-range sensors for anything else, sir,” Banfield stated. “I suggest we launch several more deep space probes to monitor the surrounding area and to detect transwarp signatures.”   

“Scan for theta radiation, too,” McCallister said. Keeping his focus on the recent scans appearing on the screen before them, the captain knew from tales from Voyager how the Malon were known to be a nuisance when it came to them wanting to dump their poison in someone else’s backyard if it increased their profit margins and cut the time it took to dump their waste. Had McCallister now placed a target on his back and the rest of his crew for destroying the Hub? Would the Malon hold a grudge and want revenge? He hoped not.

Standing up straight from where he leant, McCallister thanked both officers and left astrometrics swiftly. 

Moments later, McCallister stepped into the sterile environment of sickbay; he noticed Slyvexs sitting in her office. He approached his chief medical officer, knocking gently on the open doorframe to grab her attention. The Denobulan doctor lifted her eyes from the PADD she was engrossed in, and a friendly smile immediately spread across her face as she recognised McCallister.

“Captain, please state the nature of the medical emergency.” She said in an almost tuneful way.

McCallister smirked at her optimism. “No emergency, Slyvexs; I’m just checking in on our latest guest.”

With a gentle push, Sylvexs pushed her chair back and stood up, her eyes fixed on her visitor. She motioned him to follow her down the carpeted corridor that led to the private treatment rooms. As they walked, the soft sound of their footsteps echoed off the walls, and Slyvexs updated the captain on her patient. “He is resting at the moment, but he is responding well.” 

As McCallister entered the treatment room, he couldn’t help but notice the numerous security officers stationed both inside and outside the room. Commander Keli was also present, keeping a watchful eye over Slyvex’s patient. The only biobed in the room was occupied by Jaceon, the young Brunali man whom Gray had saved from the clutches of the Borg. Jaceon looked drastically different from the last time they had seen him when he was beamed to the sickbay after the away teams were rescued by the Telemachus. He was no longer covered in his Borg armour, and the scars from where the implants had been removed were visible on his bare body. Jaceon was fast asleep, covered up to his chest with a reflective blanket. The sight of him reminded McCallister of his own sons, and he couldn’t help but feel a surge of empathy for the young Brunali. Many decades ago, the Borg had brutalised many races in the Delta Quadrant, including the Brunali. Even with one soul saved, at least their race would continue to survive for now.  

“I’ve been able to remove almost seventy per cent of his Borg implants,” Slyvexs explained in a quieter tone. “I will be able to fully restore his original appearance once I have removed more of his implants, but like so many former drones, he will require extensive psychological treatment.”

“Make sure you include Counsellor Hilgan as part of his recovery regimen,” McCallister instructed.

“Krizon has already visited and is planning a few things,” Slyvexs confirmed. “And I believe Craigen has started work on tracking down any family members that Jaceon may have with the D-E-I, but with the Brunali so few in numbers, it may not happen quickly.”

Keli then spoke up. “I think Reuben would be happy to help Jaceon out.” 

McCallister turned to his chief security and tactical officer, “Reuben is certainly the best mentor for him.” McCallister looked around the room. “Where is Reuben, by the way?”

“Resting, sir,” She replied. “In his quarters.”

McCallister thanked Slyvexs for her time before he gestured for Keli to join him in the corridor outside the treatment room. “Keli, is everything okay with Reuben?”

  She appeared to hesitate at first in answering him and then replied through a deep exhale. “I think the mission brought up some bad memories for him. He mentioned that while he was connected to Jaceon, he detected a sub-collective within the Collective.”

“A sub-collective?” McCallister questioned, confused by that remark. “Was it just isolated to the hub?”

“It’s a possibility,” Keli said as she crossed her arms against her chest. “Reuben thinks that it may have been some sort of protection from the neurolytic pathogen for those drones positioned on the Hub.”

“A way of ensuring they complete their task?” McCallister wondered.

Keli nodded. “It’s one possibility, but Reuben will need time to reflect on what he saw. In the meantime, I’d like to assemble a team to review the data we downloaded from the various data nodes and analyse their contents. We may be able to find more answers.”

Agreeing with the idea, McCallister told Keli to get on with it. “Apart from dealing with what he saw while connected, will Reuben be okay?” McCallister asked out of concern.

“I hope so, sir,” Keli replied honestly. “However, don’t worry, sir; a few of us will meet later for drinks and have a darts tournament. I plan to drag Reuben to it.”

Smirking at her plan, McCallister nodded in appreciation for Keli having Gray’s back. “Just take it easy on him, then.”

“I will, sir, I promise,” She replied. “If you’re free later, then you and Captain Reyas are always welcome to join us in the Barn.”

“Thanks, commander, but the captain and I are planning to have a quiet night in,” McCallister said with some hope. “As long as we don’t have to engage a Borg Cube between now and then.”

“I have my fingers crossed, sir!” Keli exclaimed as she showed her index and middle fingers crossed on both hands.

Thanking her again for her efforts, McCallister stepped away and made his way towards the exit of sickbay. As he crossed over the threshold, his combadge went off.

“Bridge to Fleet Captain McCallister,” spoke Jonarom.

McCallister tapped his combadge as he continued walking down the corridor. “Go ahead, lieutenant.”

“Sir, you have an incoming hail from Captain Cambil on the Themis; she’s marked it as critical.”

Intrigued to know why Cambil was calling him with such urgency, McCallister ordered Jonarom to transfer the call to his quarters, which he was closest to, so he could take her call. He hoped she was about to share some good news. 

  • James Preston McCallister

    Squadron Commander

  • Tomaz

    Chief Strategic Operations Officer
    Chief Intelligence Officer
    Second Officer

  • Slyvexs

    Captain of Medicine

  • Keli

    Chief Security & Tactical Officer

  • Corella Banfield

    USS Triton
    Commanding Officer
    Former Captain of Science
    Second Officer

  • Jonarom

    USS Bellerophon
    Chief Science Officer
    Former Chief Communications Officer