Beamed into Star Trek

A ten year old girl was beamed aboard the Enterprise. For what? To have a adventure; crazy, fun, and....Frightening at best. Then under some circumstances; she left then was taken back into the strange world once more. She isn't familiar to the episodes nor is aware what happens for the next seven years. She is in the wild; where aliens are every day known beings,phasers being the equivalent of guns, and people are beamed! Here's to hoping she will exactly have the intended fun this is suppose to be for her.


15. In desperation pt 2

Captain's log: From what Q has told me about this 'Q-Collector', it collects Q's. Now the exact nature of it is left undetermined but the creators are said to be a parallel version of the Q continuum called the M's...And there are strange occurrences happening in space.

"What is it,Number One?" Picard asked.

Riker's eyes glanced toward the screen.

"See for yourself," Riker said.

Picard looked over.

They were suppose to be above a lush Class M planet right now called Gladios 12 currently in the year 2013 with a humanoid civilization who undergo a strange kind of skin metamorphosis every 12 years. These beings were green in color, had blonde hair, and unusual freckles. But for some reason Gladios 12 is not there. Nor is the two moons orbiting the planet in sight. Some of the stars usually seen around the planet are missing.

"What in the heavens?" Picard said. He turned his head toward Riker. "When did it vanish?"

"Right after Q was struck by the Q Collector," Riker said.

"Which was exactly one hour and twenty-two minutes ago," Data added.

"This is very unusual," Picard said. "Planets, entire civilizations, and stars going missing."

"Seemingly after the draining, this happens," Riker said. "There is a connection we can't see."

"Perhaps..." Picard said. "There is something Q has left out."

"And everything in space is disappearing," Riker said. "Right after Q's incidents. On screen." A image of Gladios 12 appeared along with the correct stars and two moons. Suddenly in a white flash the class M planet is gone and so is a good deal of stars. "Apparently the planets in our solar system except for Earth have vanished."

"All at once?" Picard asked.

Riker shook his head.

"We just got the report from the Federation, Captain," Riker said. "It occurred over two weeks."

"And Earth still stays," Picard said. "This is very...Perhaps Q is really what he says."


Nurse Supplementary log: Q has arrived apparently weak and on the run from a Q collector. He is the last Q, or so he says.

I turn away from the Padd to Q's direction. God did he make it so easy for someone to be concerned for his well being. There were some science fiction related universal things still left in him. However the pace the draining is taking is becoming slower instead of going faster as it did. The watch, itself, is glowing. When Q was asleep and not many patients were inside; I saw the Q Collector visit.

It took another portion out of Q.

Just two more and Q would disappear like the other Q's.

The Q collector disappeared.

"Ensign Barb reporting for Q duty," Barb said.

The very same Barb from five weeks ago. Barb and I had become good friends because we shared the love to help people in whatever situation they are in no matter what we have to do.

"Thank you," I said.

"How is he?" Barb asked.

Clair Barb, I reminded myself, that is her name.

"Weak," I said. "But asleep."

I departed Sick Bay lost in thought. I returned to my quarters. I realized after sitting down on the couch that I had been at sickbay for a total of six hours. Six whole hours! I couldn't believe myself but maybe doing a lot of walking and standing has made it not a bother that I am just standing doing nothing. I felt relaxed then take out the pad I had been working on a story. Currently it stands at least 23 chapters.

"Hey Bell!" Bay said, hopping on to the other end of the couch.

I nearly screamed.

"Don't do that to me!" I said.

Bay laughed.

"It is my duty to keep you on your toes," Bay said. "Speaking of duty...How was Q duty?"

I had to contemplate how to reply.

"Boring," I said.

Bay frowned.

"Boring?" Bay repeated. "You telling a omnipotent being way older than you and I IS BORING?"

"Yes," I said.

"You are perhaps the luckiest woman in the universe or the most dull person I ever known," Bay said.

"A little bit of both," I said, and then I resumed writing the story.

Bay got up off the couch.

"That is a little odd," Bay said. "I don't see a star at the left hand side. It is almost like some-one put a curtain up."

" 'Oh, come on!' NightTrow shouted, grabbing Avenger by the hand. 'We don't have time for you to gawk at some visor!' Avenger seemed..." I talk out loud while writing.

"You should look at this," Bay said. "It is quite remarkable."

"Rather ...Standing...then NightTrow dragged him..." I mumbled.

"Hey, story-writer!" Bay said. "You might not see a sight like this ever again."

"I don't care," I said.

Bay is gasping at space.

"You should," Bay said. "It is quite unnatural. Life just cannot vanish without reason nor can the stars, planets, and moons." I am able to hear what he is saying while in tuned to the story at hand. "I find it quite interesting. Never in my short life have I seen this happen...My creator would be all over this....If he were alive."

" 'Yes, he is,'" I muttered out loud.

I heard Bay's shoes change direction.

"Excuse me?" Bay asked.

"'He is alive,'" I muttered out loud.

"Absurd," Bay said. "A old man can't outlive a machine without making himself known to the general public about what he is making!"

I looked up toward Bay raising a brow.

"What?" I said, confused. "What are you talking about?"

"My sire---my father," Bay said, correcting himself in mid sentence. "You say that he could be alive for a old man he is."

I lowered my brow.

"Don't be pulling my leg, human," I said. "Besides, your father, as you have told me is a rather young man in his fifties. He barely looks over forty!"

Bay had a snicker.

"Really?" Bay asked.

"Uh huh," I said. "In fact you can't tell if Harrison Ford or George Clooney are over 50 because they look so young."

"I have no idea who those are," Bay said.

"Search ER and Air Force One the movie when you have the time," I said.

Bay stepped aside.

"See outer space, like, right now," Bay said. "For yourself."

I get up then come over to the window.

I gasp seeing half of space missing leaving only a dark void in which had been full. Only a half of space remained gleaming in color that shine so brightly. I can see little constellations in the distance. It reminded me why I was interested in Science Fiction. The possibilities are endless what can happen in the future when people get aboard space ships, use weapons to defend themselves, and explore new worlds while making sure not to interfere.

"Amazing," I said. "Just like a Syfy movie."

"I am not familiar to Syfy," Bay said.

"It is a Science Fiction channel where B rated Science Fiction movies are aired," I said. "Sometimes they air supernatural related shows." I go back to the couch then sat back down. "Perhaps you have some duty in engineering because I have nothing else to do except for writing."

"Aw, how boring," Bay said.

"I am boring," I said.

"So you are," Bay said.

I raised up a brow, finding that odd.

"You are very agreeable today," I said.

"I agree with you, all the time," Bay said.

I lowered my brow, now frowning.

"No, you do not," I said.

"Do too!" Bay argued back.

I sighed,feeling a tinge of my nerves being struck and a heated feeling slowly rising up to my brain.

"Enough," I said. "I am ending this argument."

"I will win the next one," Bay said.

"Bay," I said. "There is no point in arguing."

Bay smirked.

"But there is room for debate," Bay said.

I tossed a pillow at Bay's face then sat back down and resumed writing.

...The next day...

...The extra sick Bay...5:48 AM

I wondered why Q sent himself to the Enterprise. But, being the most omnipotent individual who has tricked and comically tortured people I can have a slight idea why not let people see him in his weakened state. He didn't want his self image ruined by appearing to be so weak when he appeared healthy as a ox.

I entered Sick Bay after entering a password.

Q was transferred to this one because it wasn't like the public one and was part of the battle mode.

"Hey Bell," Came Q's weak voice. I saw the man with one hand over his chest. He looked so ill and different from the last time I had seen him awake. "Ah no, I believe the lantern hasn't visited since...I was taken to this ship."

"Q," I said. "Is there a way to release the Q?"

"I'll answer when you reprogram the doors to enter for people authorized," Q said. "And please, exclude Jean-Luc."

"You just want to see Picard be stopped by a door," I said.

"Oh no," Q said, lightly shaking his right hand. "I just don't want him to see me in this...Condition."

"Where were you heading to,anyway?" I asked.

"China," Q said. "Or Pluto. Or a Space ship that is a maze. Or a..."

"You really didn't know where you were going," I said.

"Course I did!" Q said.

I went to the doors then reprogrammed them. Authorization could be only granted to Ensign Nurses and Doctors, but not Jean-Luc Picard. I turn around toward Q who is back napping, snoring, on the biobed. Damn, I really hate this Q Collector even more. He's so weak and out of energy he has to rest. I knew the truth that he had been in fact visited by the lantern.

I picked up a flute then play it horribly.

"Turn that music off, pleease!" Q begged.

I smiled putting down the flute.

"You should call yourself lucky for me being the first one here," I said. "Otherwise you wouldn't get your way."

Q raised a brow.

"Why do you trust me?" Q asked.

I stared at the man.

"Well, I wouldn't exactly call it trust," I said.

Q lowered a brow.

"Your android friend would say other words meaning the same, such as; confidence, belief, faith, certainty, assurance, conviction, credence..." Q said.

I sighed.

"Because I just do," I said. "Now, this foggy idea you might have to opening it."

"Oh, you'll die," Q said, as though it were a casual thing.

I laugh.

"Oh, I won't die," I said, calmly.

"First, move the lid to the right," Q said. "If you get your hands on it..." He stopped mid-sentence. "Wait, why am I telling a human?"

"Because I rather die doing the right thing," I said.

"...I rather if it was someone else," Q said.

"Anyone else would be Captain Picard," I said.

"I wouldn't think he would do that," Q said, sending me a glare. "After all; Picard and I just met."

"If you are going to befriend a human other than me; he has to see you in your weakest state," I said. "That is what friends are for."

"Then why did you follow my instructions?" Q asked.

I shrug.

"Cooperation," I said.

"All right," Q said. "After turning the lid: Time will pause. You will have time to get far away as you can from the Enterprise. Once you are 5 time days away from it you are allowed to turn the..." Q sighed. "Think 'time watch' and the lantern will provide it. It has the power of the Q. Think like a Q and you get anything you want. Afterwards you must turn it right again. Time will resume. You need to wait 24 hours to do it again because then it will open and then...And then...kaboom."

"Kaboom?" I asked.

"A time explosion," Q said. My jaw went slack. I thought of the Doctor Who episode 'The Big Bang' at the thought of a time explosion. "Time will rewind to the exact moment before I made a ugly mistake and many of the other Q will be returned to their rightful places. Anyone who is around me at the time this explosion happens will retain memories of the event."

"And me?" I asked.

"Sadly you might be found dead for all that I care," Q said.

"24 hours," I whispered.

"Yes, 24 hours, inside a shuttle," Q said. "That is..." He starts to doze off. "If you are able to get your hands on it before...I am gone."

Q fell asleep.

"Q!" I shouted.

"What!" Q reawakened.

"What happens to you after the explosion?" I asked.

"To me it would back to the moment where the man offered me the item," Q said. "I would remember and so I would be able to say no and warn the continuum about it." Q looked at me rather strangely. "You are a strange Cippallon for caring about what happens to me...Why is it that?"

I smiled.

"Because you are omnipotent," I said. "And omnipotent people can't die."

"That is not a reason," Q said.

"So is," I said.

"Is not!" Q argued back.

"You like pie," I said. "My reason is valid."

"I do not like pie!" Q said.

"What about cheese cake?" I asked.

"That is not pie," Q said.

"AH HA!" I said. "You like caaaakee!"

"I don't eat," Q said.

"You like caake!" I said.

"Do not!" Q said.

"Uh huh, you do," I said.

"I do not like pie and cheesecake," Q said. "They are sour and very creamy!"

I smiled.

"You barely know Picard," I said. "But once you have some adventures with him and gone to know him...You might even consider him your friend."

"The Q have their own prime directives," Q said. "I cannot inter--"

"The Doctor doesn't obey the prime directive," I said. "And nor do you."

"Yes, I do!" Q said.

"The next time we meet again afterwards, you tell me how many times you obeyed the rules," I said, watching his face become white. "You know it as I do; that is close to impossible to be the rule follower when you don't agree with it."

"You have a way of provoking the worst out of people," Q said.

"No," I said. "I provoke everything out of people not just the worst and best."

"If you'll like to know," Q said. "If you opened it outside the Enterprise then the entire ship would explode and never be able to be brought back. Do you not want to be responsible for the death of one thousand some people?"

I couldn't say a word.

"I think not," Q said.

The doors forcefully opened to reveal the Q collector floating. I looked over toward Q feeling fear. I absolutely felt scared about grabbing the damn thing. The Q collector floated into Sick Bay and the doors closed behind it. A white light traveled out of the lantern that is close in range to Q. Q winced and tried to move except he could not. The white light returned to the Q Collector. I leaped upon the Q Collector wrapping my arms around the metal item. I get up struggling to keep the item in my arms.

"Nice..." Q weakly said.

I turn around toward Q.

Q is visible and then for a second there he vanished but appeared once more.

"Q?" I said. "What is wrong?"

"Apparently..." Q said. "Shut the glass." I closed the glass. "Apparently...My ability to move and be solid is into question as...My physical body capable of movement is inside." He did not seem to be well. "You must...Get to Shuttle Bay."

I nodded.

"But...Turn the lid," Q said. "Once you are out."

"I'll see you in seven days," I said.

"No," Q said. "I won't be seeing you next week..."

Q sighed turning his head and then he fell asleep. I tuck the Q collector under my arm. I went out the door leaving Q behind. I went inside the Turbolift, "Shuttle Bay 2," and then the Turbo lift went down. I put both arms behind my back. I am so being early for today. Time, as Q put it, would freeze everywhere including the Enterprise. I found it thankful for knowing about time travel that I can understand this.

I should give credit to Back to The Future and Doctor Who for understanding time travel.

The doors opened shortly after. I opted in taking the 'El-Baz' currently parked. I got into the El-Baz shuttle craft along with the lantern, booted up the shuttle, then departed the Enterprise. On one hailing channel I saw a message attempting to pop up. Probably the Captain, I noted pressing the 'play' button.

"Ensign Bell," Picard said. "Where are you going?"

"I am only trying to help," I said.

"We know what the lantern can do," Picard said. "And we have a plan to stop it."

I smiled.

"But do you know it can undo itself?" I asked.

"No," Picard said.

"Then please respect what I am going to do. I cannot be near the Enterprise when I set it off and Q said so," I said. "The next time we speak; it will be a completely different occasion..." I took out the closed lantern. "I have the lantern."

"Come back!" Picard ordered.

"I can't risk the loss from a time explosion," I said. "Forgive me. Bell out."

The screen became black and I turned the lid to the right. The transport beam stopped in its tracks. I sighed, feeling lucky that Q had in fact told me the truth. I looked down to the lantern wishing for a time watch. A timer appeared on the screen. I had a mental thank you issued to Q. I put the lantern on the passenger seat then flew off into space.



...After the lid has been turned, twice...

"Where is the El-Baz?" Picard asked.

"It seemed to have vanished," Data said.

"In thin air," La Forge added.

"Things just do not vanish in thin air," Picard said. "Number One, you have the bridge."

Picard went into the turbo lift. Perhaps Q knew more then he had let on explaining his situation. Perhaps it was just to keep them busy or believe there was a way to neutralize the lantern. Q had obviously known another way. The doors opened to the secondary part of the Enterprise. Picard stepped out of the turbo lift.

The next, in a flash of light, Picard finds himself in Sick Bay.

Q is faintly reappearing and disappearing before Picard's eyes.

"I told her..." Q said.

Picard came over to Q's side.

"Where is Ensign Bell?" Picard asked.

"Five days away from the Enterprise, apparently," Q said.

"Q, why?" Picard asked.

"Because it was the better option then telling you and making you decide which one of your officers to send," Q said. "You would have come to the...Same other solution." Q winces as he fades out briefly. "To phaser it out through the glass using...Phasers."

"And?" Picard asked.

"Oh, that wouldn't have work," Q said. "It would...Just have damaged it not destroyed it."

"That would have been helpful to know," Picard said.

"Oh mon capitaine," Q said. "It wouldn't have. Trust...Me."

"I can't really trust someone like you," Picard said.

"I am fading from your plane of existence to what remains...Of the continuum," Q said. "Do you wish to see...What remains of my pure form?"

"No," Picard said.

"I figured," Q said.

"What kind of omnipotent are you for asking something you already know?" Picard asked.

"A good one," Q said, with a weak smile. "You won't understand most Q. They are so...Strictly responsible."

"Sounds like I would get along with them easily," Picard said.

"No, you wouldn't," Q said. "Once their mind is made; there is no changing it."

"I beg to differ," Picard said.

"You know..." Q said. "Next time the continuum is going to send some Q to your ship; I'll request not being assigned."

"Assigned?" Picard repeated. "Do you mean to tell me,you of all people, have assignments?"

"Yes, I do," Q said. "I can feel myself fading..." The machine on his wrist ticks red. "Maybe...My point will be proven with a much more serious Q....He'll pay you a visitation in the most...most...unwanted way possible."

"Such as being civil and requesting to speak with me?" Picard asked.

"No, he'll appear much like a stalker in your room," Q said. "Most polite Q are easily confused by your social norms."

"That'll be better than anything," Picard said.

Q winced.

"I can't keep this form for long..." He looked up toward Picard. "Better late than never."

In the next second that passed, Q became a dark humanoid being similar to a human except he had nothing. He had outlined features of a face on the pitch black body. It was like Q wore a space suit lacking a hair, skin color, decorations, and machinery. The only thing that stood out about Q was the metal wrist watch. He had no center. Q did not have eyes or the sorts.

"This is just your perception of my pure body," Q's voice came from the body that didn't have lips. "It has a lot more usually," His head turned straight up toward the ceiling. His body is fading before Picard. "Maybe...Just maybe...I can one day show you a beautiful planet where your ship can visit and not interfere in the civilization's progress."

Picard found it strange to see a humanoid speaking without a mouth.

"I understand how odd it is to see a human body, not speaking," Q added. "But yet you can hear my voice. That is because I am communicating through your mind and it sounds like I am talking when I am not."

"Fascinating," Picard said.

"One of the perks to being a Q," Q said, weakly with a laugh.

Q's chest moved up and down.

"Do you have a heart?" Picard asked.

"Of course I do," Q said. "I just don't have mine right now."

"But you are breathing,Q," Picard said.

"Ever so faintly," Q said. "You see...We...The Q...Still have connections to our hearts even if they are removed," Q turned his head toward Picard. "I feel like my time in this form is ticking away and I will forcefully leave these premises to where my heart is. A Q can only stand so long without their heart."

Q faded before Picard's eyes.

"But that can be avoided, right?" Picard asked

"No," Q said.

"There are other options to prevent some-one from leaving; for example, talking," Picard said.

Stubborn human, Q thought, this is exactly why I didn't want Picard to be brought here. He just makes it harder to leave!

"We have nothing to talk about," Q said.

"Of course we do," Picard said. "You can tell me anything."

"I have some obligations not to," Q said.

"Q, what is Ensign Bell doing with that lantern?" Picard asked.

"She is going to pull it right and die in the middle of a time explosion," Q said. "She might not even be alive."

"You sent her with a bomb?" Picard asked.

"To fix everything, yes," Q said.

"Q, that is very wrong," Picard said. "Sending someone to their death without warning me, the captain of this ship, before they embark on a suicide mission!"

"Do you understand what I did?" Q asked. "I spared you the grieving of losing one of your precious crew members on the bridge. I have seen all the possible solutions; The Enterprise is not complete without her Captain and her first assigned crew. The other timelines are messed up; In many, someone else is in your chair. Someone else is in Riker's place. Some else is in Data's place. People are in different....places, Jean-Luc! Because they DIED and..." His voice began to grow weaker but never it did lose the intensity. "Can never be brought back...Not unless some-one performed a miracle!"

"I really hope you are wrong," Picard said. "I might not remember this conversation,Q."

"The curse to being around me is that you will,Jean Luc," Q said.

"So tell me, about these timelines," Picard said.

"A days worth..." Q said. "That might not be possible."

"Anything is possible," Picard said. "Talk to me, Q."

Q's percepted form faded into his human form.

"Really?..." Q asked.

"Really," Picard said, with a nod.

"You know, you're an ideal role model for kids," Q said. "Oh well..I'll start with the William Riker timeline."

So Q talked and talked. Picard asked a few questions here and there regarding Riker's motives but they were all answered by Q. Then Q went on to Worf's timeline which required little to no questions. Afterwards Q explained Data's not-so-boring-timeline full of so much action that it can fill a book, seriously. Q condensed Data's story to at least five hours with many questions from Picard. After that, Q talked about La Forge and Ensign Bell. Picard's face grew grim at their conflicting timelines.

"So...She raises a child without La Forge?" Picard asked.

"Yes," Q said. "It is a good thing I stopped regarding her future..."

Picard raised a brow.

"What about her future?" Picard asked.

Q had a weak laugh.

"I cannot say," Q said,.

"Doctor Beverly to Picard," Doctor Beverly's voice came to. "How is Q's status?"

"Fading," Picard said. "Why don't you see it for yourself?"

"The doors are frozen," Doctor Beverly said.

Picard looked over toward Q.

"Don't look at me," Q said. "Not my fault."

"The doors will be unfrozen in a couple hours," Picard said. "Picard out."

"If the perpetrator decides to let them melt," Q said.

"Then who's fault is it?" Picard asked.

Q is silent as he briefly faded.

"Time..." Q said,weakly. "Time is speeding." He had a sigh. "She is so impatient."

"I find it hard to believe Ensign Bell would do something like that," Picard said.

"Ensign Bell is perhaps the most boring and mysterious Cippallon I ever came across," Q said.

"Boring and mysterious?" Picard asked.

"This is the first time I have come across someone who is both," Q said. "Jean-Luc...I have to go."

Then the unexpected happened. Q felt a hand grab onto his. Did a human really take his hand? He tried not to believe it at first. But it was the honest truth beyond all; Picard had taken his hand.

"You've told me what happens after it gets you," Picard said. "Locked away as a weapon to be used against any species." Q stared at the man in horror. "I think you wouldn't want that; for humanity and those you have inflicted games upon."

"You are right," Q said. "But humans are still evolving. Perhaps...One day...Just one day; we'll be on the same field." He had a smile. "And the Q would be so scared of that to happen. But I won't. I'll embrace it and say, 'About time,' greeting them to the continuum..." His smile faded as did his face. "You can't really keep me here."

"I can try," Picard said.

"You can drop your romantic act," Q said.

"I am not being romantic, Q!" Picard said.

"Oh, I must be getting confused..." Q weakly said. "It was a nice pulling your leg...Computer...What time is it?"

"Time is 2300," The computer said.

Q is vanishing.

"Oh dear..." Q said. "It seems she won't do things right..." Outside time froze. "You better brace yourself, Jean-Luc, she just pulled open the lantern...Prematurely."



...Captain's ready room...

Picard was reading a book when randomly a flood of memories came in. He put down the book feeling them returning. All of them were so strange; starting from Q's random arrival to the bridge, a flying lantern, and another of Q vanishing on a biobed before his eyes kind of like the Traveler. The memories became crystal clear to Picard as though they had happened when in fact they hadn't.

Q randomly popped up in a chair in front of Picard's desk with his boots on the desk and his arms folded.

"Now, you remember," Q said.

Picard frowned.

"Get your shoes off my desk, Q!" Picard demanded.

Q wiggled his boots.

"It is not a antique, Jean-Luc," Q said. "My boots wouldn't--"

"Take your boots off my desk," Picard repeated.

Q frowned.

"You are no fun," Q said, taking his boots off the desk. "See? Not even a scratch on it."

Picard recalled more of the memories, just then, remembering Ensign Bell.

"Bell," Picard said, as he turned pale. "Computer; where is Ensign Bell?"

"In Sick Bay," The computer replied.

Picard looked over toward Q.

"She is protected by a Q," Q said. "The only answer is...Me." Q stood up then paced back and forth in the room. "That is the only reason why she could have survived. But I haven't put her under my protection."

"And the lantern?" Picard asked.

Q laughed, stopping in his tracks facing toward Picard.

"The continuum has all-so-happily sent it back to the M continuum," Q said.

"Right where it should be," Picard said.

"But it is going after the M it was created by," Q said. "And that M will never, ever, harm a Q. Never."

"Who said Q's can be harmed?" Picard asked.

"By our own weapons and M weapons," Q said. "Jean-Luc, I ask of you not to speak of what happened in Sick Bay between us."

"I won't," Picard said.

"Because I would be quickly tossed out and called a fool for showing weakness towards humans," Q said. "That was very thoughtful of you...But right now, I am in the debt of your Ensign and I will get that debt paid."

"You, in someone's debt, how laughable," Picard said, with a snicker.

"I take it very seriously," Q said, leaning his arms on the table. "But I would like to bring you on a...Perhaps...Impromptu vacation."

"Q, I do not want a vacation!" Picard shouted.

"Sure you do!" Q said, with a smile.

Q snapped his fingers. The two vanished in a streak of white. The next minute the two are back with Picard wearing a fedora,cowboy clothing, and a very well undeserved frown on his face. Picard smelled like he had been in the wild west for at least a week. His boots are stained in mud.

"Now, wasn't that relaxing?" Q asked.

"No!" Picard said. "That was quite the contrary!"

"Hey, you had fun!" Q said. "That school teacher was rather nice with you."

Picard narrowed his eyes, hunched his eyebrows, and stood up from the chair.

"Fun?" Picard repeated. "Fun is when I am enjoying it! I did not enjoy a single minute of it."

Q sighed.

"The hell I give you to have a nice time," Q said. "How saddening to see it end up like this," Q snapped his fingers leaving Picard in the uniform and not a bad smell coming off him. "The next time you'll be encountering a Q...A serious and very responsible Q will be speaking to you."

Picard sighed, sitting back down.

"Which would be you," Picard said.

"Me?" Q said. "Come on, I have my moments but I am not that uptight."

"...Q, go home," Picard said.

"You'll find how much you prefer a Q with a different Q," Q said.

Q snapped his fingers and there he disappeared in a flash of light.

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