Tuesday, August 29, 2017
Here is the sequel to the personal logs of Tom Paris, set around Voyager's third year in the Delta Quadrant:
THE HELMSMAN'S LOGS – 2373
Voyager came across a planet during Alpha shift, called Sakari IV. And it seems to be rich with gallicite. Just what we need to reconstruct our poor, overused warp coils. B'Elanna will lead the Away team to find the gallicite. Because I have experience in rock climbing, she asked me to join her, Neelix and Vorik on the mission. I agreed. Hell, I couldn't say no to a pretty woman. End personal log.
(Sighs) God, I can't believe what I've just been through! What B'Elanna went through. It was just (Pauses) . . . Hell, it was just plain weird! Vorik comes down with something called pon far, infects B'Elanna and then she comes on to me like a bride eager to lose her virginity. It was all just so . . . And the weird thing is I would have happily complied with B'Elanna's wishes. God, I wanted her so badly! I . . .
Okay, I better simmer down. I'm beginning to ramble. I guess it all began before we beamed down to the surface of Sakari IV. When B'Elanna was in Engineering with Vorik, last night, he proposed marriage to her. Marriage! Between a half-Klingon and a Vulcan. Yeah right! I don' know what the hell Vorik was thinking. That pon far must have really made him delirious. It also made him attempt a telepathic mating bond with B'Elanna, after she turned down his offer. She responded by dislocating his jaw. Good for her!
I didn't know all of this when I met B'Elanna and Neelix in one of the Transporter Rooms, this morning. I guess I should have realized that something was wrong. B'Elanna had seemed too . . . I don't know, chipper. Flirtatious. I managed to put it all behind me, as we climbed down into the Sakari caves. But it all came back to me, after Neelix and B'Elanna's fall. While poor Neelix was on his back with a broken leg, B'Elanna began berating him for an accident that wasn't his fault. I tried to calm her down, but she . . . Good grief! She bit me, instead. On the chin. And to be honest, not only did it hurt . . . it also aroused me. God, I really must be sick! Anyway, B'Elanna ran off before I could stop her.
Well, I contacted the ship, and told the Captain what happened. Chakotay and Tuvok appeared on the planet with news on what happened between B'Elanna and Vorik, yesterday. We managed to find B'Elanna, and also a group of paranoid Sakarians, who thought we were an invading force out to destroy what was left of their world. Considering B'Elanna's aggressive behavior, I didn't blame them for being paranoid.
B'Elanna and I got separated from the others for a while. Chakotay and Tuvok managed to convince the Sakarians that we meant no harm. They also found us. And we were just about ready to return to the ship, when Vorik, acting very demented, appeared, demanding to bond with his "mate". Huh! That crazy idiot had disabled Voyager's Comm system and stolen a shuttle, just to reach B'Elanna. Anyway, Vorik challenged me to a . . . hell, I can't even pronounce the damn term! It was some kind of Vulcan combat ritual. And I had to fight it to win B'Elanna's hand. However, B'Elanna decided to challenge Vorik and soon, they were trying to tear each other to pieces. In the end, B'Elanna prevailed. At least she was the one left standing. That son-of-a-bitch Vorik was out cold and on the ground.
(Pauses)I wish I could say that was the end of it. But I can't. What happened today has finally forced me to admit a truth I've been afraid to face. B'Elanna. I love her. Hell, I'm in love with her. I don't know how long I've felt like this. Since Avery III? Or after my infatuation with Kes ended? I don't know. Hell, maybe the reason I was so attracted to Rain was because she strongly reminded me of B'Elanna. And I also remember feeling irritated by B'Elanna's infatuation with Chakotay. Along with the jealousy I felt whenever other men like Freddie Barstow and Vorik expressed interest in her.
She had been right about me when she said all those things in the cave. Those damn caves. I guess I'll never look at another cave without remembering Sakari IV. And that first bite, which gave me pain and unexpected pleasure. Or the way we wrestled each other over that phaser rifle. It had seemed as if we were engaged in some kind of mating dance. And I'll always remember the way she threw herself at me - rubbing her body against mine. And that kiss. God! She has the warmest lips! Hell, I nearly surrendered after that.
So why didn't I just give in and have sex with her? It would have spared her further suffering. Hell, my wildest dreams would have come true. But I also knew B'Elanna. If we had mated, she would have avoided me like the plague for the next 60 to 70 years. In the end, Tuvok urged me to have sex, since her fever was getting worse. After all that trouble I went to be a gentleman, I received permission to make a beast of myself. And I nearly did. At least after B'Elanna began sniffing me - and growling at the same time. Klingon custom, I guess. I have to admit that I was confused. But I also felt aroused. Then she tackled me to the ground (second time that day) and demanded to know what I was doing. When I told her that I was enjoying myself, she laughed. And so did I. God! She looked so wild . . . and beautiful! After our little wrestling match (something I'll never forget) we nearly had sex. Nearly. That was when Vorik decided to interrupt us in a fit of rage. Dammit!
I've already admitted that I'm in love with B'Elanna. But what about her? How does she feel about me? I still remember what she said in the caves about pretending disinterest in me. That she was afraid to reveal her true feelings. Was she speaking the truth? Does that mean she's attracted to me, after all? I mean, I wasn't the only man on Sakari IV, at the time. Even Chakotay was there. But she pursued only me. If she is attracted to me, then it's time to take this relationship to a new level. Like I said, I know B'Elanna. I'm sure she'll try her best to pretend that Sakari IV never happened. But I can't pretend anymore. I want her and I just can't let a good woman like her slip away. End personal log.
The crew spent the better part of the day, helping the Sakarians avoid any further detection from passing ships. In exchange, they gave us a large supply of gallicite. We also discovered why they were so paranoid. Someone found the corpse of a Borg drone. This means that we're not that far from Borg space.
Vorik came by my quarters to apologize for his behavior, yesterday. My first instinct was to knock his lights out. Or at least try. But I noticed the humiliation in his eyes and realized that he never wanted to attack B'Elanna or me in the first place. He also explained what going through pon far really meant. Chemical imbalance in the brain, every seven years? God! Pon far must really be a bitch to deal with. Thank God, I'm not Vulcan. I have enough trouble dealing with my Human emotions.
I also saw B'Elanna for the first time, since yesterday. We ran into each other in Turbolift Three and engaged in small talk for a few moments. But I couldn't take it any longer. I stopped the turbolift and demanded that we talk about what happened on Sakari IV. And B'Elanna did exactly what I had feared she would do - try to pretend that what happened was a mistake. And unfortunate incident caused by a Vulcan imbalance. But I wasn't having it. I told her that I refused to pretend that nothing happened. I also said that I saw her "wild Klingon side" and that I liked it. And that I wouldn't mind seeing it again. And guess what she said? "Be careful of what you wish for, Lieutenant." Was that a challenge? End personal log.
Voyager has been traveling through the Nekrit Expanse for the last month, now. Not only are we the first Alpha Quadrant natives to explore this part of space, but it hasn't even been charted by those in the Delta Quadrant. We have come across systems with inhabited planets - like Sakari IV. However, we mainly seemed to be encountering nebulas. And quite frankly, I'm getting a little tired of them. The Captain ordered Chakotay and Marie Kaplan to scout ahead for a shortcut through the Expanse. Huh. Good luck on that one. End personal log.
The Borg! I should have known we would encounter them, sooner or later. After all, we're in the Delta Quadrant, right? Voyager came across a Borg cube, hovering over some inhabited planet. It had been disabled by an electro-kinetic storm some four or five years ago. The survivors ended up on the planet below, disconnected from the Borg Collective. There, we found Chakotay . . . along with a dead Marie Kaplan.
Poor Marie. We had dated a couple of times, nearly two years ago. She was one of the few people aboard this ship that I really enjoyed being with. A lot of fun, yet passionate about her job. She was an engineer, but usually worked under Harry in Operations.
Chakotay made friends with the survivors, including a former Starfleet officer named Riley Fraizer. Very chummy, those two. Chakotay had been wounded by a group of renegades. Miss Fraizer and other former drones healed him, using some kind of temporary assimilation. I don't know if I would care for that. Even if it meant my life. I hate loss of control. And it didn't help Chakotay in the end. His new "friends" used his brief assimilation to force him to activate the neural transponder, so they could create their own little collective. He even shot B'Elanna (breathes deeply) and Tuvok with a phaser, while under their influence. (Sighs) I don't think Chakotay will ever trust the Borg again. Or maybe even ex-drones. End personal log.
B'Elanna has finally recovered from being shot by Chakotay, thank God. Naturally, she has forgiven him, realizing that he had acted against his will. I also heard that Vorik has returned to Alpha shift. According to B'Elanna, she got tired of Vorik skulking about like a whipped targ. And he also happened to be one of her best engineers. I guess I don't blame her. After having her sex drive tampered by a pon-farred Vorik and shot by an assimilated Chakotay, B'Elanna is having one hell of a month. I'm beginning to wonder what's next in store for her. They say trouble usually come in threes. End personal log.
Voyager came across a planet inhabited by aliens called the Mikhal Travelers. They usually traveled in vessels, big enough for only two occupants, exploring unknown space. Sounds like a great life, if you ask me. The Captain believes they can provide information in plotting a shorter course to the Alpha Quadrant.
Meanwhile, the Doctor has been using the Holodecks a lot, lately. Becoming acquainted with historical figures in the Alpha Quadrant. Frankly, I have no idea on what he's up to. But it sounds dull. End personal log.
Another case for Inspector Tuvok. It seems someone has assaulted Kes' friend, Zahir, on the planet's surface. The Mikhal Travelers have asked Tuvok to investigate. I also ran into Doc in the turbolift. He looked . . . odd. Almost remote. And sinister. I wonder if he has been fooling around with his matrix. End personal log.
Poor B'Elanna. I once contemplated on what else could happen to her, after the incident with Chakotay. Well, it's happened. The Doc had used the holodeck to create a new personality improvement program for his matrix. He ended up becoming some kind of Jekyll and Hyde personality. It was the Doc who had assaulted Zahir. Jealous fit, perhaps? Maybe. He also kidnapped Kes and took her to the planet's surface. But not before paralyzing B'Elanna's legs before she could purge his new personality subroutines from his program. I just checked with B'Elanna. She's doing fine. I guess after Sakari IV and the Borg, she's taking this latest mishap in stride. And she has also purged the Doc's new program, thank God. End personal log.
Now it became Harry's turn to cause trouble for B'Elanna. It's almost becoming a sick joke. Harry didn't harm her directly. From what I gathered, Voyager had a first contact situation with a race called the Nasari. Before the Captain could establish friendly relations, Harry fired upon the Nasari ship, claiming their attentions weren't honorable. Well, the Nasari fired back, causing damage to Engineering. B'Elanna suffered major plasma burns from the damaged conduits. I just visited her in Sick Bay. She's unconscious, but stable. (Sighs) As for Harry, he's in the Captain's dog house, right now. End personal log.
Poor Harry! Because of a few spots on his face, he thought he had found his true home. A homeworld filled with lots of beautiful women. Instead, he nearly became a corpse and progenitor of future Taresian women. It seemed they travel to other systems to infect men with a retrovirus designed to alter their DNA. Apparently, some Taresian woman had infected Harry back at that last space station we had visited, some time ago. The DNA made Harry believe he was Taresian. Hence, his attack on the Nasari ship. Fortunately, Harry discovered that they wanted to use his genetic material for procreation. A process that would have meant death for Harry. We managed to beam him back to the ship and escape before he met that fate. Whew! The Taresians sure have one hell of a way of getting pregnant. Thank God they never became interested in me.
B'Elanna is doing okay. She regained consciousness, yesterday. The Doc kept her in Sick Bay for another day, due to the pain in her lungs. Right now, she's in her quarters, resting. Maybe I should pay her a visit. End personal log.
Miracles do happen, after all! I finally managed to convince B'Elanna to join me for lunch. Just the two of us. She had agree on one condition - that we don't eat in the Mess Hall. Apparently, she doesn't want to give the crew the misconception that we're dating. So, we ended up having pizza and wine in my quarters. It was nice. We discussed the party Neelix planned to hold in the Resort. Work also popped into the conversation, along with Harry's pursuit of Lyndsay Ballard. It seemed Harry and Ballard were old Academy chums. Harry had a crush on her back then, until he met the indomitable Libby. Ballard seemed oblivious to Harry's feelings for her.
Granted, our lunch wasn't exactly the romantic gathering I had envisioned, but it was better than nothing. End personal log.
Whew! What a day! Who would have thought an astral eddy would prove to nearly fatal? It had already destroyed a space station, where we were supposed to meet a race of aliens called the Vostigye. Since Voyager's hull was too heavy to withstand the eddy, I volunteered to investigate it from the Cochrane. And I nearly didn't make it back.
Before my Away mission, the Doc gave me a shot of hyronalin, while critizing my tendency to live dangerously. I later discovered that he was experiencing anxiety over the changes B'Elanna had made to his holofamily. Apparently, she found the Doc's family a little too perfect and decided to make a few tweaks, making them more realistic. Well, one of those tweaks resulted in the death of the Doc's holographic daughter, Belle. He wanted to end the program right there, but I convinced him to continue. He would have cheated himself of experiencing how families deal with tragedies - and how those tragedies brought them closer, because of the pain. Maybe B'Elanna went too far with her changes, but I think that the Doc might learn something valuable, in the end.
Speaking of B'Elanna, we had an interesting conversation in the Mess Hall before my trip on the Cochrane. It seems that Klingons also have a thing for romance. B'Elanna told me that romance for Klingons is a little more . . . "vigorous". Hmm, just thinking of that makes me . . . maybe I better not say anything. Anyway, after reading a small passage from her novel, I began to see that she hadn't exaggerated. Maybe I can ask her to lend me her copy of "Women Warriors of the Blood River" when she finishes. Who knows? It might turn out to be a convenient technical manual, after all. End personal log.
I finally managed to borrow B'Elanna's copy of "Women Warriors of the Blood River". From what I've read so far, it's damn good. I never thought I would enjoy reading Klingon romance novels. And it's also turning out to be one hell of a technical manual. End personal log.
Made a bet with B'Elanna. I bet that that the problem in the navigational conduits came from an anodyne relay. Naturally, I won. Which means we'll be using the new Klingon martial arts program I had just created inside Holodeck Two, tonight. Besides, it would be good for her. I love B'Elanna, but I wish she would be more willing to embrace her Klingon side. She doesn't realize that the combination of her two heritages make her so intriguing. Unique. Maybe this program will be the first step in the right direction for her. Maybe. End personal log.
God, she can be so damn stubborn! Would it have really hurt her to deliver the death blow? It's a goddamn holoprogram, after all! (Pauses) Shit! I'm getting ahead of myself. I'm . . . now where in the hell are my trousers? Oh. There they are. (Pauses) Where was I? Oh yeah. B'Elanna and the martial arts program. (Sighs) Maybe it was a mistake to trick her into making that bet. She didn't m-m-m-phf-f-f-. . . (Sighs) mind at first. But when she had to deliver the final blow, she froze all of a sudden. I guess the idea of giving in to her Klingon side had appalled her. Instead, she stormed out of the holodeck. If we hadn't encountered that alien in the corridor, she probably would have gutted me with her bat'leth. Doc was right. I must like to live dangerously. (Sighs) Time to deal with our new visitor. End personal log.
Another bizarre adventure in the Delta Quadrant for Voyager's intrepid crew. For the second time, we had our ship taken from us. Only the Nyrians used more subtle methods than Seska and the Kazons. Very clever, really. They transported the crew, one-by-one, to their habitat . . . or prison. While they were transporting us off the ship, they transported their fellow Nyrians to Voyager. The gentleman B'Elanna and I had stumbled across on Deck Six, turned out to be the first . . . and leader of the whole operation. The Captain and Tuvok eventually discovered a way to regain Voyager . . . but not before B'Elanna and I ended up in another argument.
While on the Nyrian habitat, B'Elanna and I managed to make peace over our first argument. But good old Doc opened his big fat mouth . . . Okay, it wasn't all his fault. Maybe I shouldn't have agreed to his comment about B'Elanna's tendency to push people away. But the Doc was right. She does use her temper to keep others at a distance. Just as B'Elanna was right . . . (Sighs) She was right that I used humor to hide my own feelings. B'Elanna shut down the Doc's vocal subroutines to keep him from making it worse between us. It didn't help. By then, I had lost my temper and told her that she was afraid of making friends, and walked away before she could reply.
We made up - again. Of course, not after our little adventure in the Nyrian habitat. Dodging Nyrians in something that resembled the Artic Circle was no mean feat. Nor was preventing B'Elanna from succumbing to hypothermia. We eventually found ourselves back in the Voyager compound - with our arms wrapped around each other. Very embarrassing. I think Nagasawa was laughing. After our return to Voyager, B'Elanna found me in Holodeck One. We didn't say much, but we made our peace. And the smile she had on her face . . . God, it was beautiful! And so is she. End personal log.
B'Elanna and I were supposed to meet for lunch, this afternoon. Instead, I found her inside Holodeck Two, in the middle of a program. It seemed someone had created a program called Insurrection Alpha and it's all about a Maquis takeover aboard Voyager. It seemed so intriguing that I asked B'Elanna to reset it for me. The main character is a Starfleet Security ensign, who joins the mutiny out of his or her dislike of Tuvok. Only I botched it up. First, I betrayed Chakotay by warning Tuvok on the Bridge. Then, I rejoined the mutiny and ended up cleaning plasma conduits. Disappointing way to end a good story. End personal log.
I've decided to play along as a full-fledged mutineer. I hope it's more fun this time. End personal log.
What a relief it is to be finally out of the holodeck. I never thought I would say that, but I never thought I would be trapped inside one of the holodecks, trying to keep from getting murdered by a holographic Seska.
And to think, all of this came about, due to the imagination of one Lieutenant Tuvok, Chief of Security. During the early months of our journey, he had fears of a Maquis mutiny and created a program to prepare his junior officers for such an event. When his fears proved groundless, he abandoned the program. Unfortunately, Seska discovered Insurrection Alpha, about a month before she left and made some . . . adjustments. In case Tuvok decided to complete the program. Well, two years and five months later, Tuvok decided to complete it - after I had volunteered to do the same, myself.
Seska really laid out some traps for us. Which included getting shot by Chakotay, having the Doc put nitric acid on my wound, nearly being incinerated in one of the Jeffries tubes and execution by Seska. Whew! Thanks goodness the Captain added an attack by aliens to delay our execution. And thank goodness Tuvok managed to booby-trap that phaser. End personal log.
The Captain and others had suggested that Tuvok and I create a new story, together. Sounds like a good idea. Maybe I should follow B'Elanna's advice and add a little passion to it. A romance between characters similar to a handsome hotshot pilot and a feisty engineer, perhaps? End personal log.
We had a party for Kes, today. Ironically, it wasn't to celebrate her birthday, since that happened some four days ago. In some possible future, Kes became infected by chronoton radiation and later, began traveling backward in time. B'Elanna and the Doc found a way to bring her back in temporal sync with the rest of us. Kes didn't say very much on what happened . . . or should I say, what will happen. In fact, she seemed eager to write a report on a certain race of aliens we might encounter. Not long after B'Elanna, Harry and I left the Resort, we encountered her and again, tried to get more information on the future. She continued to be mum on the subject. However, she gave me the oddest look. I wonder why. End personal log.
Sad news today. Ensign Ane Jetal died from wounds she had suffered in an alien attack. Both she and Harry had been wounded pretty badly, during an Away mission. I was in Sickbay, when the Doc dragged me into assisting them. Kes was unavailable at the time. Poor Doc. He had the unfortunate task of choosing who to treat first - Harry or Ane. He chose Harry and Ensign Jetal died. End personal log.
Something happened to the Doc, this afternoon. He went beserk in the Mess Hall, not long after Ensign Jetal's memorial service. I guess he felt guilty for being unable to save her. The Captain decided to wipe his memory of the entire incident, much to Kes' distress. I heard she was furious. But not even Kes' anger was able to change the Captain's mind. End personal log.
Very chilling experience, this morning. B'Elanna came across what happened to our missing probe. It turns out it has been discovered by the Borg. Now it's official. Voyager has entered the heart of Borg space. You know, the idea of settling on some planet, light years away doesn't sound all that bad. End personal log.
Not long after our discovery of being in Borg space, preparation for surviving the upcoming journey began. The Captain had planned on taking the ship through an area unaffected by the Borg called the Northwest Passage. Only one problem. We would be traveling through a space affected by spatial distortions. But that's not all. The Borg is also on the run. It seems they are being hunted down by another race. It was a sight to behold - all those cubes zooming by, practically ignoring us. One cube did bother to stop and scan us. But it turned around and followed the others. Tuvok later discovered that all of the cubes had been destroyed. He had also picked up a strange reading. The Captain has ordered him, Chakotay and Harry to investigate. All I can say is that I'm glad I'm not going. End personal log.
Harry, Tuvok and Chakotay's little Away mission nearly ended in disaster. And if the Doc doesn't find a way to help Harry, disaster might just happen. (Sighs) Harry is in serious trouble. The Away mission came across an alien aboard a Borg cube filled with dead and injured drones. According to the data that Tuvok had collected, the Borg called these aliens, Species 8472. And according to Kes' telepathic flashes, Species 8472 are determined to wipe out the galaxy. If that's so, why are they only going after Borg targets? Poor Harry had an encounter with one and now his cells are being eradicated inside out. The Doc is trying to keep him stabilized. I only hope that he succeeds. End personal log.
The Captain has made her decision. We're going to form an alliance with the Borg. Judging from the expression on Chakotay's face, I guess he thinks it's a bad idea. And I have to admit . . . I heartily agree. I'm not saying that we should form an alliance with Species 8472, but Kes' visions aside, we don't really know much about the war between them and the Borg. But, she is the captain, and so . . . a Borg alliance it is. God! An M-class planet would really look great right about now. End personal log.
Just have time for another break. I feel as if I've been glued to the Helm station for the past three days. Well, the Captain has her alliance with the Borg. She also found herself stuck on one of the cubes, after an attack by a Species 8472 bio-ship. However, she's still alive. And unassimilated. She ordered Chakotay to match the cube's speed. Not a difficult thing to. And there is more good news. Harry has recovered. I don't know what miracle the Doc had performed, but performed one, he did and Harry is alive and completely recovered. End personal log.
Species 8472 struck again and destroyed the cube that the Captain and Tuvok were on. Fortunately, we managed to beam them off before it blew up. Both the Captain and Tuvok were injured. However, in the Captain's case, her injuries were severe and now Chakotay is in command. We also have five Borg drones in Cargo Bay Two from the now destroyed cube. (Sighs) What is the point in complaining? If all of us get out of this alive, it will be a miracle bigger than the one Doc had performed on Harry. End personal log.
We did it! We defeated Species 8472, thanks to those new weapons developed by the Doc, Tuvok and that Borg drone. We destroyed a few bio-ships in fluidic space and destroyed more in normal space. Species 8472 have ended the war. Unfortunately, our lone Borg drone, who survived Chakotay's purge of Cargo Bay Two, tried to send Voyager to the nearest Borg cube to have us assimilated. The Captain and Chakotay overcame their differences and came up with a plan to stop her. It worked, but not before she knocked me down on the Bridge. Ouch! Chakotay and B'Elanna were able to disconnect her from the Borg Collective and now, she's stuck aboard Voyager. With us. End personal log.
We've survived the Borg and Species 8472. And since today is New Year's Eve, Neelix and I have decided to host a party on Holodeck One, using the Resort program. After five days of being in the middle of a galactic war, we need a little fun. Harry and I were supposed to escort B'Elanna to the party. But I asked Lyndsay Ballard to talk him into escorting her, so I could have B'Elanna to myself. I hope my plan works.
I just realized that today marks the end of 2373. Looking back, I have to admit that it has been one bizarre year. We started out battling the Kazon and ended up fighting even more dangerous adversaries. And we even got to Earth - well, in the wrong century, but it was Earth. More importantly . . . at least for me, I've fallen in love. Twice, actually. The first time, I had to leave Rain behind in the late 20th century Earth. Too bad. She was one of the few people I had an immediate connection with. As for the second time, I can only hope that I'll have better luck in the following year. That is, if B'Elanna can finally let her guard down. Oh well. Happy New Year. And end personal log.
Wednesday, August 23, 2017
Below is a gallery featuring the costumes designed by Eduardo Castro for the first two seasons of the ABC series, "ONCE UPON A TIME". Do not expect to find Jennifer Morrison, Jared S. Gilmore, Eion Bailey or others performers not featured in any of the Fairy Tale Land flashback sequences:
THE GREAT "ONCE UPON A TIME" COSTUME Gallery
Friday, August 11, 2017
Below are images from "SENSE AND SENSIBILITY", the 1995 adaptation of Jane Austen's 1811 novel. Directed by Ang Lee, the movie starred Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet:
"SENSE AND SENSIBILITY" (1995) Photo Gallery