. . . 2464. .
. . . Earth 2 . . .July 16th. . .
Twenty-one (but more like twenty-two) years ago Jean-Luc Picard and what remained of his crew returned to Earth. They spent the better part of the year getting back home coming across civilizations, encountering them, obeying the prime directive, and suffered some loss along the way to home. They made quite the impact on their journey to Federation Space. Some crew members decide to stay on some planets feeling they can make more of a difference there. But the crew went on. They came home. For that they were awarded with a warm welcome home.
Jean-Luc is one hundred fifty-nine.
His sons, Robert and Jack, they died last year.
Worfian had gone to Qo'nos for the better part of the decade and learned more about her Klingon heritage.
Data was currently somewhere else serving Star Fleet doing god knows what.
Jean-Luc stared at the night sky.
"Grandpa?" Came his great grandson Alexander, putting his hand on Jean-Luc's shoulder.
Alexander the first passed away in 2443 in a fight against another alien race to protect some children. He had lived for a long time. It was fitting to name his great grandson after his friends son.
Jean-Luc looked up toward the young man who seemed to have the characteristics of a Klingon-human that had slowly fading forehead ridges qualities.
"Just staring at the stars," Jean-Luc said. "Thinking back."
Alexander took his hand off his grandparent's shoulder.
Over the last few years Jean-Luc's legs had become weak and he developed a need to be wheeled around. He was wheelchair bound to say for the least. The doctors could not explain it. How he started to become weak. In the eyes of medicine Jean-Luc Picard should be healthy as a ox. But he wasn't. He just got the news hours ago that he was dying of old age, the typical way for a man in his years to go. Jean-Luc closed his eyes.
"What was it like being a captain?" Alexander asked.
"It was . . ." Jean-Luc said, opening his eyes. "Remarkable."
"Remarkable?" Alexander repeated.
"And it had challenges," Jean-Luc said. "Nothing was the same. You had to be on your toes on rather or not some temporal abnormality was going to occur, being flung out of the path we had set in course, being visited by omnipotent being, being attacked by Romulans, a accident going on, strange events going on in the Enterprise, and the unexpected popping up."
"It sounds better than the stories you tell me about them," Alexander said. "In your position, you must have been forced to make tough calls."
"Before the Romulans had entered the Federation; there were plenty of them." Jean-Luc said.
Alexander smiled, sitting down into a chair beside Jean-Luc.
"Grandfather, when did the Enterprise first leave Earth to explore?" Alexander asked.
"April 4th, 2364." Jean-Luc said.
"Wow," Alexander said. "Enterprise-H will be set to explore this August."
Jean-Luc turned his head toward Alexander.
"What?" Jean-Luc said, caught by surprise.
"Star Fleet wants you to be on the first voyage," Alexander said, taking out a bottle of champagne. "On August 1st, 2464!"
"Ah, they got wind," Jean-Luc said. "Bad news goes through quickly."
Alexander put on hand on Jean-Luc's shoulder.
"They are waiting on my reply," Alexander said. "I didn't jump the gun."
"My reply is yes." Jean-Luc said.
"Guess who will be the captain of it?" Alexander said.
"Who?" Jean-Luc asked.
"The android guy!" Alexander said. "He has been making wave after waves in his career. Did you hear about the space whale he prevented from being killed by the Romulans?" He threw his arms in the air. "And my mom is his second officer!" He took the cork out of the lid then lowered it down to the glass cups. "Isn't it epic? You are gonna be aboard the one ship you talked about."
Alexander handed the cup to Jean-Luc.
"To the future." Jean-Luc said, holding the cup up.
Alexander held his cup up.
"To the Enterprise." Alexander said.
Their drinks clunk together.