. . . 2999. . . April 2nd. . .
. . . Enterprise Z. . .9:48 PM. . .
Captain Barnabas was having his casual drink of orange juice rather than synthetic alcohol at the lounging area watching the large field of metal and rocks flying across one another with what remained of a planet once colonized by the Romulons. The Romulons with Romulan and Klingon characteristics. Barnabas had a holographic screen up around him displaying mother nature in her most undisturbed manner. It was filmed on a planet called Garden Vros. The planet wasn't so hospital to any kind of human related civilizations.
The animals on the planet lived in harmony.
Complete, utter nature.
No space pirates.
No rogue Romulons.
No unexpected red alerts.
It was his cup of tea.
"I should go fishing," Barnabas said. "That sounds like a good idea. Computer: turn off flying slides."
Barnabas finished the cup of orange juice then he put the cup into the silverware cleaner. He then went into his bedroom,took out his bedroom prosthetic eyes then put in his command eyes that appeared to be more realistic and had a automatic connection to the brain. The feeling of the wires connecting to those burned connector slightly stung at first. He looked up in the mirror blinking. The other pair were more comfortable in his sockets. Barnabas's real eyes were destroyed due to lye being splattered into his face.
People still did not trust Cardassian/Romulan halfbreeds. He was a young boy when it happened. Merely ten years old. At first Barnabas and his parents were terrified of losing his eyes but the doctors assured him nothing will be different and there will be two pairs given to him. One for school and one for home. He had to walk around a week wearing a visor with artificial programmed eyes. Boy, they were plastic and they hurt like hell being pressed into his head. It was the painful week of his life. Until the two pairs were made. The flying slides had returned into the wall ever so carefully.
Barnabas put the casual relaxed eyes into the box.
His casual eyes had his original eye color.
Command eyes had the tint of red.
Barnbas got dressed into his fishermen attire, complete with a hat that had a lot of hooks around the rim and a brown vest. He had his own equipment for fishing. Fishing was a relaxing exercise for Barnabas ever since he was a child. He viewed the fish had lives and they, in turn, benefited him. Fishing helped him relieve any stress weighing in on his mind.
The holodeck could project bait.
"Lights off." Barnabas said,holding his fishing rod.
Barnabas exited his dark quarters into the light.
His eyes adjusted to the sudden change in light and were adjusted shortly after he made his way down the hall as he usually did. He could hear people passing by while his eyes were blinded. He had a little nod toward them mentioning 'good morning'. Now the captain of the Enterprise-Z had a handicap and not many were aware how much it affected his work. They often did not ask. Nor did Sonny who found it irritating he couldn't tell if his friend was having any kind of seizure of some sort or in some medical condition because he had prosthetic eyes. Prosthetic eyes did not share the same changes in normal eyes.
He knew the corridor so well Barnabas could walk around with his eyes closed and still get to his intended destination.
"Captain," B-4 said, as his eyesight was clearing. "May we take a minute of your time?"
It was a cadet, by the looks of it, with B-4.
"Sure." Barnabas said.
"This is uncomfortable,Mr B-4." Came the cadet.
"Relax, Cadet, we'll get the same answer from him." B-4 said, attempting to be of some assurance.
"I am listening." Barnabas said.
"Do you have telepathy?" The tall cadet with leopard spots asked. She had the nose of a leopard and she lacked a tail. Her ears were shaped exactly like a leopard. Her dark brown hair nearly blended in with the spots on her face. Her dark sea blue uniform with a light pink secondary theme color reminded Barnabas of the uniform made in the late 2364's by Star Fleet personnel. She was a Dekardian.
"No." Barnabas said.
The two were baffled.
"No?" B-4 and the cadet said at once.
"No." Barnabas said.
"Well," B-4 grabbed the cadet by the shoulder. "Let's go ask Ensign Charlie!"
The two hurried past Barnabas.
"How odd." Barnabas noted, then he went on his day to the holodeck.
. . . Briefing room. . .
. . . 11:39 AM. . .
"Ninty-nine point five percent of the civilization in the Milky Way is capable of telepathy," B-4 said, standing near a projection. "'Except for I and the holoprograms." He tapped on the screen. "Except. . . "
"Except? . . ." Barnabas said.
"Five percent of civilization has dormant telepathic abilities," B-4 said. "I have ran a test."
"That explains it." Sonny said.
"Yes, it does." B-4 said.
"Explains your questions." Stern said.
B-4 appeared as though he wanted to sigh as he looked over to Captain Barnabas.
"There are currently five people in the Milky Way who are not fully intuned to telepathy," B-4 said. "It mostly consists of our Captain Barnabas, Lieutentent Commander Jacob Strong of USSEnterprise Z, Bryan Audios of the USS Fighterpilot-C, Adrian P Janeway of the USS Voyager-P, and. . ." He paused, making it seem intentional. "President of the United Federation Tevrek of Vulcan."
The captain raised a brow.
"So?" Barnabas asked.
"Telepathy is a major part of evolution," B-4 said. "It is mostly characterized by telepathy and other powers related to the mind. . . for example!" He took out a primitive pen. "Miss Stern, make this pen float."
B-4 dropped the pen.
The pen never landed.
It hovered there for a minute then drifted off to the table.
"That is child's play," Sonny said, leaning back into his chair. "It took me five months to achieve that."
"We evolve into pure energy like the Q and the other non-corporeal beings we have come across in the past one thousand years." B-4 said.
"What about Treylane?" Barnabas asked. "He had machines to help him."
"Non-corporeal life forms draw off energy from their environment," B-4 said, tapping on the screen with the extendable pen. The slide changed to the image of a vanishing Q being consumed by white energy in what seemed to be a monk's cloak. "We have come to the conclusion the very force allowing entities to go where-ever they want is energy. PURE. RAW. Energy." He rubbed his two fingers together. "Star Fleet Cadet Rosie and I were part of a study. Rosie will be returning to Earth shortly . . ."
There was a period of silence in the briefing room as Barnabas put his elbows on the table then leaned his two fists under his chin
"There is a catch, isn't there?" Barnabas said.
"Yes, Captain," B-4 said, tapping the screen to display a glowing orange ball. "There is."
Chief Security didn't need to be able to read minds but the concern went over to the captain and his second officer.
"Star Fleet would like to see how the growth is stunted for you on Cardassia Seven." B-4 said.
"Cardassia. . ." Barnabas said.
"Yes,Captain." B-4 said.
"If he goes, then some-one must make sure he does not get attacked." Chief Security said,his hands in a fist. "A mobile holoprogram capable of blending in and seem casual. I have programmed a Cardassian version of myself that needs a live connection to me for in case any life threatening situations come about."
"Cardassia is a peaceful planet, Mr Security." Barnabas said.
"You have a history of being attacked on that planet, Captain, with all due respects." Chief Security said.
"That was on Earth ten not Cardassia seven," Barnabas said. "Besides. . . Why Cardassia seven, Number One?"
"There is a control factor to the experiment that they will conduct," B-4 said. "I have heard it is going to be rather simple."
"If I don't pass them?" Barnabas asked, raising a eyebrow.
"Then, Captain, you will be one of five last humans from the Milky Way system when the change has occurred." B-4 said.
. . . Two days later. . . Cardassia Seven . . .
Barnabas last recalled a stroll down the street of Sezen Palfree. His head felt aching. He could feel pain on the ridges along his eyes. He had been wearing his casual bright green eyes. But now? They oddly inflicted pain on him whenever he tried to open them. He could feel his hands were bound to an armrest. He could remember the scent of the sweet grass, the hot and humid weather that partially made Cardassia Seven the seventh home planet of the Cardassians. He remembered seeing a shadow in the corner of his eye. He had photographic memory due to his Cardassian heritage.
What was wrong with him?
"Let's see if they work on him." Came a gruff older voice.
Then his right eye could see.
"Where am I?" Barnabas asked.
He saw the Cardassian with a sleek neck, broad shoulders, and a unusual design of scales all over his face making the shape of a mustache above his mouth. Barnabas could see a rocky ceiling covered in what seemed to be obsolete technology dangling out of the crevices along with a couple branches keeping electrical string together. There was a bright glow in the distance followed by what seemed to be the edge of a console like device seen on a starship in the 23rd century.
"You are our prisoner for the time being," Came the gruff Cardassian. "You may call me Karon." The older Cardassian snickered. "You were easy to take out."
"The procedure has been completed, Karon." Came a woman's voice.
"Whatever you are thinking, I am not going along with it!" Barnabas said.
Karon leaned forward.
"You already have," Karon said, with a grin. He held his hand up and snapped his fingers, "Come."
In came a Cardassian/Romulan with a striking appearance to Barnabas, except he lacked a right eye.
"State your rank and age." Karon said.
"Captain, thirty-four." The other Barnabas said.
"Birth." Karnon said.
"'January 1st, 2965." The other Barnabas said.
"Current posting." Karon said.
"Enterprise-Z." The other Barnabas said.
"Current assignment." Karon said.
"Telepathic testing." The other Barnabas said.
"No!" The original Barnabas shouted, struggling in his binds. "You are not going to take MY DAMN SHIP!"
"We already have,fool," Karon said, putting one hand on the side of Barnabas's face with a grin. "Now, you've seen me and our friend has awakened. . . I need that eye."
Karon took out the eye from Barnabas's right socket followed by a high pitch scream.
"Here's the eye," Karon said, tossing it to the other Barnabas over his shoulder.
The other Barnabas put the eye into his empty socket.
"Whatever you got planned. . . Don't expect it to be carried out." The original Barnabas said, as green blood dripped down out of the empty socket.
"The deaths of two thousand people in a Romulon attack will make war," Karon said. "And we want to participate in that."