Monday, July 25, 2016

"WITHOUT A CLUE" (1988) Review

Below is my review of the 1988 Sherlock Holmes comedy called "WITHOUT A CLUE"

”WITHOUT A CLUE” (1988) Review

In the mood for Victorian England, I had decided to watch another Holmes film called ”WITHOUT A CLUE”. Directed by Thom Eberhardt, the movie has the distinction of turning the Sherlock Holmes mythos on its ear by presenting a premise similar to the 1982-1986 NBC series, ”REMINGTON STEELE”

Ben Kingsley portrayed Dr. John Watson, a late 19th century physician who had been forced to hide his talent as a criminal investigator by creating the fictional character, Sherlock Holmes, while applying for a position at a conservative hospital. Watson failed to gain the position, but managed to solve a crime. To get close to the crimes that came under his notice and satisfy public demand to see Holmes in person, he hired an alcoholic unemployed actor named Reginald Kincaid – portrayed by Michael Caine – to play Holmes.

The movie opened with Watson and Kincaid helping the envious Inspector Lestrade (Jeffrey Jones) and Scotland Yard solve an attempted robbery at a local London museum. By this time, Watson and Kincaid had been engaged in their deception for nearly a decade and the two have become increasingly weary of each other. But the disappearance of Bank of England £5 banknote printing plates and the printing supervisor Peter Giles (John Warner); along with the destruction of a paper mill by fire forced the pair to continue their deception once more. Their investigation led to a major counterfeiting case that threatened to disrupt the British Empire’s economy.

I suspect that ”WITHOUT A CLUE” might not be to everyone’s taste. The movie’s style of humor closely resembled that from the late Victorian/Edwardian music halls. Because of this, the humor ended up being considered flat or incomprehensible to some. I, on the other hand, loved ”WITHOUT A CLUE”. Not only did I appreciate the director and screenwriters’ attempt to compliment the movie’s style with its late Victorian setting; I also liked the fact that the setting also embraced the movie’s style of humor and dialogue. To be honest, I suspect that the humor might be late 20th century, but presented in a late Victorian theatrical style.

More importantly, I feel that screenwriters Gary Murphy and Larry Strawther had created a first-rate story in which Watson and Kincaid set out to solve the disappearances of the banknote plates and Giles. The story is filled with exciting action that included two shootouts, a major fire, an attempted kidnapping, deception, attempted murder and murder. At least twenty minutes into the movie, the script revealed the perpetuator behind the story’s series of crimes. And yet, it still managed to deliver a number of surprises that proved to be both ominous and hilarious.

It seemed a shame that Michael Caine and Ben Kingsley had never worked together again (unless I am proven wrong). The two actors produced such a marvelous screen chemistry that left me in stitches. Caine’s sly and hilarious portrayal of the alcoholic and womanizing fake Sherlock Holmes seemed like a perfect contrast to Kingsley’s uptight and long-suffering Dr. Watson. The two leads were ably supported by the very American Jeffrey Jones, who portrayed the pretentious and envious Inspector Lestrade; Lysette Anthony as the resolute, yet passionate daughter of the missing Peter Giles; Pat Keen as Dr. Watson’s loyal and very proper housekeeper, Mrs. Hudson; Matthew Savage as Dr. Watson’s young and intelligent assistant and leader of the Baker Street Boys; and Nigel Davenport, who portrayed the very aristocratic Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Smithwick. Paul Freeman, who became known as Indiana Jones’ arch-nemesis Rene Belloq, portrayed our heroes’ nemesis, the ruthless and intelligent Professor James Moriarty. What I especially enjoyed about Freeman’s performance was his elegant take on the role.

Although a fun and entertaining movie, ”WITHOUT A CLUE” does have its flaws. The movie’s Victorian style humor did come off as somewhat stagy in the first ten to fifteen minutes. This was especially apparent in the sequence that revealed Watson and Kincaid’s lifestyle at Watson’s home on Baker Street. At times, I felt as if I had been watching a stage play. And just before the final showdown, the pacing became so slow that it threatened to drag the movie. The heroes had just suffered a major setback in the case. They spent the period leading up to the finale, trying to figure out their next move. Despite this segment’s short running time, the movie's slow pacing during this period nearly led me to fall asleep.

As I had earlier stated, ”WITHOUT A CLUE” might not be for everyone. Some may not appreciate both director Thom Eberhardt and the screenwriters’ efforts to blend its Victorian setting a music hall style humor. However, I found the humor both sly and hilarious. And along with some great action, a story filled with plenty of twists and a first-rate cast led by Michael Caine and Ben Kingsley, I would highly recommend it.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

"The Helmsman's Log - 2372" [PG-13] - Part II

Here is the sequel to the personal logs of Tom Paris, set around Voyager's second year in the Delta Quadrant: 


Part II

STARDATE 49406.28 - Oh shit! What the hell has Tuvok got me 
into? And why in the hell did I agree to get involve in his 
crazy plan? Okay, I know why. There's a spy aboard Voyager. 
Someone aboard ship may be in contact with Seska and the Kazon. 
And the Captain and Tuvok have asked me to help me flush out 
this spy. The plan calls for acting like a malcontent - being 
late for duty, submitting incomplete reports, tweaking 
regulations. And all this would mean coming into conflict with 
the ship's First Officer. Namely Chakotay.

A part of me does not really want to take that step backward. I 
don't want to be that man who first boarded Voyager just over a 
year ago. But if it means flushing out that spy . . . Damn! I 
only hope that a lot of people will forgive me when this is 
over. End personal log.

STARDATE 49415.19 - Operation . . . hell, I don't know. Bad Boy? 
Well anyway, it has commenced. The operation to flush out the 

I began with a little something that was bound to get me into 
trouble - an illegal gambling operation. Unfortunately, the plan 
called for using Harry. Allow him to win a game of pool to 
bolster his ego. Then challenge him and a few others with 
another game of chance - namely, predict the daily radiogenic 
particle count at the price of one replicator credit per bet. 
And I would get to keep a small percentage of the proceeds for 
operating the game. This ought to grab Chakotay's attention and 
get me into trouble. End personal log.

STARDATE 49417.21 - Murder aboard Voyager. This morning, 
B'Elanna told Harry and me that she found Crewman Frank Darwin 
inside an ESP conduit - apparently murdered. Tuvok has already 
found the culprit. Namely Lon Suder. I'm not really surprised. 
I didn't know Suder that well in the Maquis. That's because one 
glance at those creepy peepers of his had encouraged me to stay 
away. Can you blame me? There seemed to be a violent and 
bloodthirsty aura about him. And to think he had killed Darwin, 
because he didn't like the way the other man looked at him. I'm 
glad that he never caught me staring.

B'Elanna seemed really shook up over the whole thing. She 
complained that Tuvok made a big thing over Chakotay's failure 
to inform him and Janeway about Suder's character. I replied 
that I didn't blame Tuvok. If everyone knew about my "criminal" 
past, why should Suder be exempt? B'Elanna, loyal as always, 
didn't respond well to my remark.

Tonight, the radiogenic sweepstakes will resume. I wonder who 
will win the pot. My guess is no one. End personal log.

STARDATE 49420.49 – It has finally happened. The first steps of 
the operation to flush out Seska's spy ended when Chakotay found 
out about the sweepstakes and shut it down. And it only took him 
two days. He tried to give me the old "I thought-you-could-do-
 speech, but I shot him down with a nasty comment. I 
must be honest. I really enjoyed getting Chakotay's goat like 
that. It's as if this whole mission has given me carte blanche 
to express my true feelings.

What I don't like is earning the other crewmen's antipathy. 
Especially Harry's. He is my closest friend on this ship. And 
ever since being captured by the Vidiians, the crew has slowly 
begun to accept me. I only hope the spy will make him or herself 
known before I can piss off anyone else. 

As for the brains behind this operation - I haven't seen Tuvok 
lately. Instead, I've been reporting to Captain Janeway. 
According to B'Elanna, Ayala told her that Tuvok had mind 
melded with Suder in order to learn the latter's motives for 
killing Darwin. I wonder what happened that led Tuvok to disappear 
like that? End personal log.

STARDATE 49458.08 - The operation to flush out Seska's spy 
continues. At Tuvok's request, I was late for the senior staff 
meeting, regarding the latest crisis, looking disheveled. The 
problem is that I wish I hadn't - considering what was being 

Voyager encountered . . . would you believe this? We encountered 
a Cardassian missile here in the Delta Quadrant. And it arrived in 
the same manner as we did - via the Caretaker's array. What made 
this situation even more bizarre is that the Maquis had captured 
the missile and reprogrammed it to strike a Cardassian target - 
namely a fuel depot in a sector far from here. The missile 
apparently believed it was still in the Alpha Quadrant, and that 
an M-class planet called Ralorka IV was the Cardassian fuel 

B'Elanna confessed that it was she who had reprogrammed 
Dreadnought (the Maquis' name for it) without Chakotay's 
permission. Apparently, the Big Guy made his disappointment known 
after he found out in that "damn soft voice of his"
Typical Chakotay. But I didn't say so to B'Elanna. Our conversation 
eventually switched to my recent "discipline" problems. She 
had heard about my recent altercations with Lieutenant Rollins, 
regarding my navigational reports. What could I say? That I'm 
pretending to be a pain-in-the-ass, so that Tuvok can flush out 
a spy? Instead, I lied and told her that Rollins had over-
exaggerated the situation. You know, I almost chucked Tuvok's 
crazy little scheme after that conversation. I don't know. 
Manipulating Harry was bad enough. But for some reason, I really 
felt like a heel after lying to B'Elanna. End personal log.

STARDATE 49459.81 - She did it. B'Elanna stopped the Dreadnought 
missile from striking Ralorka IV. And not a minute too soon. At 
first, we all thought she had deactivated the missile - until I 
noticed that it had resumed its course to the planet. Hearing 
its voice - B'Elanna's voice - over the Comm system nearly gave 
me the creeps. It sounded so unemotional. So unlike B'Elanna.

After we lost contact with B'Elanna during her second trip to 
Dreadnought's interior, the Captain decided to evacuate Voyager 
and detonate it in front of the missile to divert it from 
Ralorka IV. I wanted to stay behind and help, but she insisted 
that Harry and me follow Chakotay and the others to the escape 
pods. Only Tuvok remained behind. Fortunately, B'Elanna 
destroyed the missile and we all returned to the ship. It just 
hit me. If Voyager had been destroyed, I would have been left 
with the messy task of informing Chakotay about the mission to 
find the spy. And considering our recent hostilities, I would 
have found myself in a sticky situation. End personal log.

STARDATE 49499.09 - It's been over a month since I began this 
mission to trap the spy and I'm getting nowhere. I haven't been 
approached or anything. So, the deception continues. Once again, 
I was late in reporting for duty on the Bridge. I must say that 
I came up with some pretty lame excuses - like helping Sam 
Wildman give birth. Unsurprisingly, no one bought them. And 
naturally, Chakotay raised a fuss. The only other action that 
occurred was an encounter with a Vidiian ship. It didn't turn 
out that big of a threat. We only found one lifesign aboard - a 
female who was seriously ill. Talk about a dull and frustrating 
day. End personal log.

STARDATE 49501.45 - Chakotay and I had a fight in the Mess Hall. 
A spat, really. And for once, it wasn't my doing. Okay, maybe it 
was my fault, since I was the one who became hostile. But I have 
to admit that Chakotay presented me with the perfect opportunity 
in his attempt to play the Good Samaritan. He wanted to talk 
about my recent problems. Perhaps help me. You know, I almost 
laughed in his face. But I didn't. Instead, I sneered at his 
concern for me and accused him of never taking my contributions 
to the ship, seriously. I even brought up my suggestion of 
investigating a recent nebula. Actually, I knew it was a dumb 
idea that Chakotay would surely dismiss. And give me the opportunity 
to express my hostility.

Poor Chakotay. I will really feel sorry for him when he learns 
About this deception. Don't get me wrong. I don't like the guy,
but the shit is really going to hit the fan when he realizes that 
the Captain and Tuvok had decided not to include him in this 
little scheme. I finally asked Tuvok why he didn't want Chakotay 
to know. He replied that he suspected a former Maquis of being 
the spy and he wanted to spare our first officer of any personal 
conflictions, considering the latter's tendency to jump to the 
Maquis' defense whenever one of them encounter any discipline. 
Seemed plausible. Somewhat. Okay, it was pure bullshit. I may be 
wrong, but I have the oddest feeling that spite and dislike 
played a part in Tuvok's decision. As our indomitable security 
chief has stated repeatedly, Vulcans have emotions. They only 
suppress them. Yeah, right. This decision to keep Chakotay in 
the dark is a sure sign of emotional suppression. End personal 

STARDATE 49503.51 - The Doc is in love! Who would have believed 
it? Well, I already knew that he harbored some feelings for Kes. 
I just never thought he would fall for someone else. Namely, our 
Vidiian visitor. I've only met her briefly, inside Sandrine's, 
last night. When the Doc told me about her reactions to his 
overture, I realized that my original estimation of Denara Pel 
had been right. She was shy. Even B'Elanna, who had every reason 
to hate the Vidiians, developed a sympathetic regard for her.

After the Doc's failure with Denara, he asked me for advice. Me, 
Tom Paris. Of all people! I guess he doesn't know about my 
rapidly declining reputation. Anyway, I told him about my old 
Academy girlfriend, Susie Crabtree, and how she dumped me at the 
end of our first year. After word of Caldik Prime got around, I 
guess she finally realized that she had been right to dump me. 
Anyway, I agreed to help the Doc win Denara Pel back. And I just 
came up with an idea. End personal log.

LOG SUPPLEMENTAL - Just paid a visit to Tuvok's office. He 
informed me that it was time to take our deception a notch 
upward. A step that should either bring me in contact with the 
spy or Seska. I have to create some kind of physical altercation 
with Chakotay that will get me in the Brig. Oh great! This 
should look good on my record. Sigh! I hate to say it, but Tuvok 
is right. So far, the Big Man has barely reacted to my 
insubordination. I'm beginning to suspect that he's a stick of 
wood in disguise. Maybe what Tuvok has in mind will finally do 
it. Push the situation beyond control. And the sooner I end this 
charade, the better. End personal log.

STARDATE 49509.03 - Well, it finally worked. Tuvok's plan. I 
reported on the Bridge yesterday morning, late as usual. 
Chakotay coolly informed me that he has found someone else to 
replace me at the Helm. Namely Baytart. I know this was supposed 
to be an act, but for some reason, I felt a surge of anger. I 
really wanted to hit the bastard. Instead, I insisted upon 
reporting for duty and that was when Chakotay gave me the 
opportunity. He touched me on the arm, but I purposely over-
reacted and shoved him. I have to be honest. It felt good. The 
pleasure disappeared when the Captain ordered Tuvok to escort me 
to the Brig. For a brief moment, I felt a sense of déjà vu. It 
brought back the time when Starfleet captured me after three 
weeks with the Maquis. The feeling ended when Tuvok led me to 
his office. He assured me that this little stint to the Brig 
will not appear on my record. 

After twenty-four hours in the Brig, I was released. No one had 
come by to visit me. Not even Harry. I guess I don't blame them. 
That reminds me, I have to find out how the Doc's date with 
Denara Pel went. End personal log.

STARDATE 49520.59 - This will be my last log entry, until my 
return to the ship. That is, if I ever return. Since my little 
spell in the Brig, I have become persona non gratis aboard 
Voyager. Only the Doc, Harry, Kes and Neelix seemed willing to 
talk with me. The Captain and Tuvok decided it was best to take 
the deception to the next level. Leave Voyager and offer myself 
as bait to Seska. Tuvok contacted a Talaxian freighter that was 
looking for a new pilot. He figured that once the crew learn 
about my departure, the spy would contact Seska. I only hope 
that . . . (door chimes) Enter! Got a visitor. End personal log.

STARDATE 49526.06 - I am so glad to be back! And to be honest, I 
really didn't think I would make it. Especially after Seska 
caught me using the ship's computer. But it was too late. At 
least for her. I managed to discover the spy's identity before 
she could stop me. It was Mike Jonas. Now that I think about it, 
I'm not really surprised. There was always something about him 
that I didn't trust. Even back in the Maquis. Too quiet and too 
sneaky. And I also remembered that he and Seska used to be quite 
chummy back in those days. Well, he's dead, poor Mike. I don't 
think anyone will mourn him.

Now that I've succeeded in my mission, I've become very popular 
aboard ship. Both Neelix and me. I think that little spot on the 
"Breakfast With Neelix" show must have done the trick. 
Personally, I found it embarrassing, but Neelix insisted that he 
interview me. I don't know why. He was just as responsible for 
stopping Jonas and Seska from luring Voyager into a trap. And he 
was the one who killed Jonas.

Most of the Maquis are pretty upset over the revelation. 
Especially Hogan. I haven't seen such embarrassment since Seska 
was revealed to be a Cardassian spy. I think the embarrassment 
was worse for Chakotay. Not only was he the one who had 
originally recruited Jonas, but he also found out about Tuvok 
and the Captain's scheme. I don't know if he has forgiven those 
two for making a chump out of him, but judging from the silent 
treatment I have received since my return, he certainly has not 
forgiven me. I guess things are back to normal. End personal log.

STARDATE 49537.58 - The Doc's lady love, Denara Pel, left 
Voyager today. We delivered her to a Vidiian colony without 
being detected by her people. Both seemed upset, but resigned. It 
seemed that the little matchmaking scheme Kes and I had devised, 
worked. Good. At least he had a nice romance.

Chakotay has begun talking to me again. Somewhat. At least when 
the topic of ship's business come up. But it's worse with 
B'Elanna. She hasn't given me the silent treatment, like 
Chakotay. Nor has she been hostile. But she seems to make sure 
that we're never alone, together. And during off duty hours, she 
usually sticks to Harry like glue. Or remain in her cabin - 
alone. I'm beginning to suspect that once again, our friendship 
is in serious trouble. End personal log.

STARDATE 49547.7 - God! This has been one bizarre day! Harry . 
. . and I mean by Harry Number 2 . . . Hell, I better start from 
the beginning!

It all started during Alpha shift. Sam Wildman went into labor, 
while we all anxiously awaited news of Voyager's first baby. It 
wasn't long before I spotted Vidiian ships on the sensors. 
Voyager eventually hid inside a plasma cloud to avoid detection. 
Once the ship left the nebula, all hell broke loose. The warp 
engine stalled, the antimatter supplies began to drain and 
proton burst caused a hull breach. We had no idea where the 
proton bursts came from, since B'Elanna had not begun to start 
our own bursts to stave off the antimatter drain. Then our 
situation became worse. The Doctor reported that Sam's baby had 
died, due to the ship's power drain. And . . . shit! It's all in 
the past and I'm still shaking. B'Elanna . . . B'Elanna reported 
from Deck 15 that Kes had disappeared into a mysterious void. 
(Pauses) And that Harry had died after being sucked into space. 
(Pauses) That news really floored me. I mean . . . Harry was gone. 
Permanently. But I didn't have time to digest that at the time. 
None of us did. Before we knew it, another hull breach occurred 
on Deck 1 and we had to abandon the Bridge.

What happened? A divergence field had caused sensor reading to 
double and every particle on the ship to duplicate. Two Voyagers 
eventually formed and there wasn't enough antimatter to sustain 
both vessels. We also discovered that the proton bursts that 
were damaging our ship, came from the second one. The Captain 
Janeway from the other ship visited ours and explained 
everything. I don't know what plan the two captains had come up 
with. To be honest, we didn't have time for an explanation. The 
Vidiians had returned and began firing upon our ships. I mean, 
the other Voyager. Captain Janeway #2, in an effort to prevent 
the Vidiians from a successful organ harvest and detecting our 
ship, initiated the self-destruct button. Both the second 
Voyager and the Vidiian ship were destroyed.

Before the two ships were destroyed, the second Captain had sent 
over her Harry Kim and baby Wildman to our ship. In the end, Sam 
Wildman ended up with her baby after all. And we got Harry back. 
Sort of. Hell, I don't know. This is all crazy. Harry #2 - I 
guess I should just call him Harry - had repeated the Captain's 
words that weird was all part of the job of being a Starfleet
. If you ask me, I could do without it. End personal log.

STARDATE 49556.69 - We held a christening for Sam Wildman's new 
baby. The good ensign named her Naomi. Very pretty. Neelix has 
been named godfather. During the whole, ungodly mess two days 
ago, he had comforted Sam, while she dealt with the loss of the 
first baby.

Ever since our encounter with the plasma cloud, B'Elanna has 
grown even closer to Harry. I guess I don't blame her. Even if 
there were times when I feel that I'm being shut out. Witnessing 
the death of a friend can be very traumatic. I know from past 
experience. Which leads me to something else. Namely the odd 
looks I've been receiving from Harry. I wonder what he had 
witnessed. My counterpoint's death at the hands of the Vidiians? 
End personal log.

STARDATE 49583.99 - That's it! I've had enough! I asked Sue 
Nicoletti for a date and again, she gave me the brush off. I 
don't know what to believe. That she won't go on one simple date 
with me, or that I've been pursuing her for six months. I told 
Harry that my nickname for her is "Cold Hands, Cold Heart
. Great! I've been pursuing an iceberg. I can't 
Think of any other woman aboard this ship that I'm deeply interested 
in. Well, there was Kes, but I've recently discovered that I'm 
no longer in love with her. She's a warm and sweet woman. Like a 
sister. And I'm not really interested in incest. End personal 

STARDATE 49608.69 - Dick Bennet is dead. He and two other 
crewmen were killed in a shuttlecraft crash, during a geological 
survey mission on the moon of Drayan II. Only Tuvok had survived. 
Both McCormack and Margot Gallagher are devastated. Especially 
Margot. I went to her cabin to offer my condolences, but I don't 
think she was in the mood to receive visitors. I hope she 
doesn't do anything drastic. End personal log.

STARDATE 49654.99 - I used to think what I did on Caldik Prime 
was the worst I could image. Maybe it was. But what happened to 
Tuvix makes me wonder. I still remember standing on the Bridge, 
with him begging us to help him, while Security dragged him 
away. What could I do? Order the guards to let him go? Free him 
myself? The Captain would have won in the end, and we got Tuvok 
and Neelix back. So I just stood there like a goddamn coward. I 
am so disgusted. Not only with myself, but with the rest of the 
crew. The only person who didn't seem upset over the whole 
matter was Kes. She got Neelix back. I wonder if her experience 
with the Ocampans had really changed her. The Captain is wearing 
one of those "I did the right thing" expressions. Well, no 
one will condemn her. Hell, none of us can. We're just as guilty for 
standing by, while she killed Tuvix. End personal log.

STARDATE 49659.92 - While investigating this planet in the Nyras 
system, the Captain and Chakotay were bitten by an insect that 
infected them with a deadly disease. In order to keep them 
alive, the Doc had them put in statis. At least until he can 
find a cure. This has left Tuvok has assumed command of the ship 
and me, as acting first officer. Great! End personal log.

STARDATE 49744.67 - It's over. The Doctor was unable to find a 
cure for the Captain and Chakotay's disease. He had no choice 
but to return them to the planet's surface, where they had been 
infected. The planet's atmosphere helps keep the disease benign. 
So, we beamed them to the surface, along with equipment and supplies 
for a habitation.

Tuvok broke the news to the rest of the senior staff, during a 
meeting. He also added that the Captain had ordered the crew to 
continue on to the Alpha Quadrant. That meant Tuvok and I would 
permanently become the two senior officers. Oh God! This is the 
last thing I wanted - being Tuvok's XO. I can only assume that 
serving directly under Chakotay would be worse. As for Tuvok - 
he seemed so damn cold about leaving the Captain and Chakotay 
behind. What is it with him? Doesn't he have any feelings? 
(Sighs) Of course not. He's a Vulcan. And a Vulcan is the last 
person in the universe who should be in command of a ship. End 
personal log.

STARDATE 49704.69 - I never realized, until today, what an idiot 
I've been. And a bigot. It took Ayala, of all people, to remind 

It all started with Harry, who has been continuously bitching 
about Tuvok since we left the Captain and Chakotay behind. All 
of us were in the Mess Hall, brooding over our present situation 
and the new captain. To be honest, Tuvok hasn't been much of a 
problem. But we were all still pissed by his cold attitude about 
leaving our officers behind. I thought that Ayala would 
understand how we felt, considering he used to be one of 
Chakotay's right-hand men. Surprise, surprise! Instead, he 
reminded us that we were not giving Tuvok a chance to prove 
himself as a captain and a leader. He reminded B'Elanna and other 
Maquis about how Chakotay had to grow as a leader of a Maquis 
cell. And he reminded the Starfleeters that Janeway had to do 
the same aboard Voyager. Ayala also added that Vulcan starship 
captains were nothing new in Starfleet. He had a point. He 
castigated us for not giving Tuvok a chance to grow into the new 
role as commander of a starship with a crew dominated by Humans.

I don't think Ayala's speech had much affect on the others. With 
the exception of a handful from the Security Division, Kes, 
Gerron, and our resident Vulcans, everyone else continued to 
brood over our new captain. I guess I can now consider myself 
part of the former. Mike was right. We should give Tuvok a 
chance. Hell, I got one. Why not him? I guess I've always prided 
myself on being tolerant. Mike made me realize that I had 
forgotten about the Vulcan security officer who had not automatically 
considered me guilty of murder, last year. Shit! End personal 

STARDATE 49808 - Trouble on the Bridge, today. Harry had 
detected a Vidiian ship some several light years away. Tuvok 
acknowledged the new with usual stoic manner and ordered us to 
continue our course. Then Harry made a mistake. He insisted that 
we contact the Vidiians to seek a cure for the Captain and 
Chakotay's disease. Even worse, he tried to rally support from 
the other crewmen on the Bridge. Between Tuvok's threats of a 
trip to the Brig and my warning, Harry finally backed down. 

What the hell was the matter with him? I realize that he missed 
the Captain. Hell, so do I. But what he did was stupid. 
Especially for a man with ambitions for a stellar career in 
Starfleet. End personal log.

STARDATE 49810.13 - He did it again. Once more, Harry tried to 
convince Tuvok to contact the Vidiians. He had approached Tuvok 
in the latter's quarters, early this morning. Harry had 
apologized for his earlier behavior on the Bridge. He even added 
that the Doc was willing to contact Dr. Denara Pel and that 
B'Elanna was willing to donate a sample of her Klingon DNA. Now 
that took me by surprise! And disturbed me, too.

In the end, Tuvok rejected Harry's request, reminding him of the 
destruction of that Vidiian ship, some three months back. And 
once again, Harry lost his temper. (Sighs) You know, maybe we 
should contact the Vidiians - if that would keep Harry from 
starting a large-scale mutiny. And with the Vidiians close by, a 
mutiny is the last thing we need. If that happens, who would 
save us? Tuvok is the only one aboard this ship with the 
tactical knowledge to deal with the Vidiians. And he can't do 
that, while in the Brig. End personal log.

STARDATE 49813.52 - In the end, Kes managed to convince Tuvok to 
contact the Vidiians. I'm relieved, but at the same time, I feel 
like a failure. As acting First Officer, I should have been the 
one to talk to him. It was my job. Just as it was my job to 
inform Tuvok about the crew's morale, without resorting to 
Harry's temper tantrums. Instead, I kept silent. Some XO I 
turned out to be. End personal log.

STARDATE 49818.7 - It worked. We got the cure from the Vidiians, 
thanks to Dr. Pel's generosity. And without Tuvok, we would have 
never escaped. Looking back on it, he was right to doubt the 
Vidiians' help. If it had not been for his tactics and Dr. Pel's 
help, we would have never succeeded. Now, we're on our way back 
to the Captain and Tuvok. End personal log.

STARDATE 49853.36 - It's been almost two weeks since our 
encounter with the Vidiians. I feel as if I'm on another ship. 
Voyager is on its way back to retrieve the Captain and Chakotay 
and the crew is happy. I know that Harry is happy. He has 
returned to the ideal Starfleet officer that he was before this 
whole incident. But his little act isn't fooling either Tuvok or 
me. I didn't think Vulcans could deliberately act cold toward a 
particular person, but I've noticed that Tuvok has been giving 
Harry the cold shoulder. I tried to point this out to Harry, but 
the big idiot replied that Tuvok had promised not to inform the 
Captain about his little insurrection. Maybe, but I wouldn't be 
surprised if she found out what happened, anyway. And that Harry 
will live to regret it. End personal log.

STARDATE 49933.57 - It's been a day since the Captain and 
Chakotay's return to Voyager. I wish I could say that everything 
is back to normal. But I would be lying. Despite their 
gratitude, our two senior officers did not seem happy to be 
back. I would give a month's worth of replicator rations to 
learn what happened during those three months on that planet. I 
pointed out the Captain and Chakotay's subdued manner to 
B'Elanna and Harry. The former seemed disturbed, while Harry 
dismissed the whole idea. I'm beginning to wonder about Harry. 
In some ways, I think he has become even greener since leaving 
the Alpha Quadrant. Or maybe he just doesn't react that well to 
change. And that's not a good trait for a Starfleet officer. End 
personal log.

STARDATE 49947.25 - Had lunch in the Mess Hall with Harry and 
B'Elanna. It turned out to be a disaster. Harry complained about 
Tuvok giving him a hard time on the Bridge, while the Captain 
and Chakotay were going over reports in the Ready Room this 
morning. I told him what did he expect, after the trouble he 
gave Tuvok. I also added that he was lucky that Tuvok never 
reported him for insubordination. 

Okay, maybe I should have kept my mouth shut, but all the 
tension from the past six months had finally got to me. And 
Harry's whining was irritating the hell out of me. He left the 
Mess Hall in a huff. B'Elanna demanded that I apologize. Why 
should I? Someone had to make Harry realize the consequences of 
his actions. He doesn't realize that he may have screwed up his 
Starfleet career for good. Limited as it was, here in the Delta 
Quadrant. I said this to B'Elanna and she gave me one of her 
death glares before leaving the Mess Hall, herself. Shit! I 
really should keep my mouth shut. End personal log.

STARDATE 49950.6 - I apologized to Harry for my remarks in the 
Mess Hall and he has forgiven me. We're friends, again. I can't 
say the same about B'Elanna. She continues to give me the cold 
shoulder Not once, during dinner, did she utter one word to me. 
I'm beginning to suspect that her attitude has more to do with 
the deception I had carried out to flush out Seska's spy, than 
with Harry. At first, I felt frustrated by her attitude. Now, 
I'm pissed. I'm getting tired of worrying about what she thinks 
of me. It seems as if she can't make up her mind. If she wants 
to be friends again, fine. If not, I guess I can live without 
her good opinion. I've done it before. End personal log.

STARDATE 49985.91 - Voyager came across a message buoy. From 
Seska. It seemed she finally had her baby. Or should I say, 
Chakotay's baby? And Maje Cullah seemed upset by the identity of 
the baby's father. Judging from the expression on Chakotay's 
face, I have a feeling that won't be going after the child. 
Which suits me just fine. If you ask me, this whole thing sounds 
like a trap. End personal log.

STARDATE 49987.73 - Chakotay and the Captain have decided to go 
after Seska's baby, after all. Oh God! This would mean heading 
for the Kazon-Nistrim stronghold in the Gema system. I had 
suggested we contact the Talaxian mining colony on Prema II for 
extra help. Even the Doc had a suggestion - use the ship's 
deflector grid as holoemitters in order to project images of 
nearby Talaxian ships. Not a bad idea, even though it's a 
deception that probably won't last. I did consider suggesting 
that we call this whole thing off, but I don't think anyone will 
listen. End personal log.

STARDATE 49996.36 - Voyager encountered a Kazon shuttle with an 
injured man inside. I recognized him immediately. One of Seska's 
aides - Tierna. Chakotay also recognized him. Personally, I 
think we should space Tierna out of the nearest airlock. I can't 
help but feel that we're being set up. I've heard that Chakotay 
has his own suspicions regarding our visitor. But as Harry has 
continuously pointed out, we are a Federation ship. And that 
means giving aid to those who needs it, regardless of our 
suspicions. Is it any wonder I never wanted to be a Starfleet 
officer in the first place? If the Captain is determined to give 
aid to Tierna, I hope she has considered contacting the 
Talaxians on Prema II. End personal log.

STARDATE 49999.98 - Tierna has regained consciousness. He 
claimed that Maje Cullah had killed Seska, after learning that 
Chakotay was the baby's father. As for the baby - it will be 
sent to Gema IV, the seat of Kazon-Nistrim power, to be raised 
as a servant. What's the point of repeating myself? This mission 
doesn't feel right. Besides, I really can't see Voyager 
infiltrating the Kazon-Nistrim stronghold.

Although today is New Year's Eve, no one is in the mood for a 
party. A few of us had gathered at Sandrine's for a little 
celebration. But the party mood died out long before 2373 arrived 
and everyone left. Very dismal. End personal log.