37. A chat with the past
. . . . 2370. . . .
. . . USS Enterprise D. . . . Captain's ready room. . .
Captain Picard was reading a book in his ready room on the couch. It was one of his favorite hobbies asides to horseback riding on the holodeck. Picard felt like he needed to have some time alone with a book. He already had been in the usual Sunday poker game. The book was thrilling with a adventure fit for his taste. It was then Picard had a strange feeling someone was joining him in the room. Picard looked up briefly from the book to see a materializing figure appearing in a white haze.
Picard put his book to the side on the counter then stood up as the figure became solid.
"Q, out of my ready room!" Picard demanded.
Only to be surprised by what seemed to be a young man using the counter of the desk to stand upright. He was in a jumpsuit that was totally different from the new style that was coming in. Picard was stunned, to say for the least, to see what appeared to be a mix of Romulan and Cardassian standing before him. It wasn't heard of that these two races got together peacefully (And even if they did, it would be for a war of some massive proportions) in one room.
"Hello." Barnabas said.
"Are you a Q?" Picard asked.
Barnabas was trembling before the bald captain who had little white hair behind his ears.
"I am. . .Not, but what I am is. . ." Barnabas cleared his throat. "Evolving, and so is everyone else in my time," Barnabas said. "I have met your Q very recently." He held out his hand toward Picard. "It is. . .a true honor to meet you, Captain Picard."
Picard was flattered at first as he shook the man's hand.
"What is your name?" Picard asked.
"Captain James D Barnabas," Barnabas said. "I want your advice . . ." Their handshake stopped and they both let go. His left hand went to his side. "If you were fighting against evolution to ensure a friend wasn't alone until the reached civilization. . . . Would you. . ." He leaned to his side balling up the incredibly forceful strong energy circulating through. "At the time it feels like you must leave." He looked up toward Picard. "Would you leave?"
"Good question," Picard said. "But I wouldn't say unless I have been put into that position."
Barnabas had a short laugh for two minutes then he had a sigh at the end of it.
"I have Data's brother aboard my ship. . . And it is sad he can't evolve with us." Barnabas said.
"Lore?" Picard said. "He cannot be trusted. I have known this android to be not trust worthy."
". . .Lore?" Barnabas said, apparently unfamiliar to the name.
"I was unaware Lieutenant Commander Data had two brothers."
Picard's face went pale.
"There is another one out there?"
"Yes. . ." Barnabas said. "His struggle to achieve sentience was . . . painful at best." He had a sigh. "I have files regarding his Star Fleet career aboard my ship. These events have yet to occur as you have not met him." He looked over toward the direction of the fish in the fish tank then back to Picard. "Once a major event happens for your Number One then you will meet Data's other brother. The sequence of events start there."
"Merde." Picard said.
"Trust me, he is not all that bad . . . Well. . ." Barnabas said. "Telling would be spoiling."
Barnabas glows a bright white color.
Beep. Beep. Beep.
"Enter," Picard said. "Mr Barnabas,what can you tell me?"
"I am from the last Starship with the name Enterprise-Z," Barnabas said. "Year? 3000."
"One thousand years from the future . . ." Picard said, in shock.
In walked Riker.
"Captain, there's seem to have been detection of enormous power--" Riker stopped, well really froze in spot, at the sight of Barnabas. He had panic on his face.
"Also. . .When did you see Q last?" Barnabas asked.
"A month ago." Picard said.
"And he was never seen again by anyone in the Alpha Quadrant but seen plenty of times on the Voyager," Barnabas said. "Raising his own. . .I suppose. .That can take a long time and a lot of his attention." There was a glint in Barnabas's eyes. "Hello, I. . .Have . . . been avoiding this but . . . I am your very great grandson, Mr Riker."
Riker looked over to Picard.
"At ease, Number One," Picard said. "What is his brother like? The one you are acquainted with."
"He is a lot like Data," Barnabas said. "So much like him."
"Do I ever see Q again?" Picard asked.
"You in general?" Barnabas asked.
"Yes." Picard said.
"You never see him again, Captain." Barnabas said.
Picard had a sigh of relief.
"Did I hear right? No more Q?" Riker asked.
"Good riddance." Picard said.
"That is . . . going to be weird. I have gone to expect him every-year." Riker admitted.
Barnabas looked down to a item wrapped around his wrist then looked back to Picard.
"Time to go." Barnabas said.
"If I were you, Barnabas, I would not stop fighting until the ship is docked." Picard said.
"Thank you." Barnabas said.
In a blue light Barnabas vanished.