Author: steamboat PM
Why's Nigel been abducted? What needs to be done before he can go home? What's Preston got to do with it? Will Nigel ever be truly happy and marry Sydney? This is a sort of sequel to "Nigel from the Beginning" but can be read before or after that story. PLEASE REVIEW EVEN IN 2013. THANKS!Rated: Fiction T - English - Sci-Fi/Romance - Nigel B. & Sydney F. - Chapters: 8 - Words: 60,221 - Reviews: 41 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 10-08-11 - Published: 04-01-11 - Status: Complete - id: 6865455
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
I don't own Relic Hunter or Star Trek the Next Generation; or any of the characters from these shows.
Information, a phaser is a weapon used on the Enterprise in the 24th century and a medical tricorder diagnoses what is wrong with a person. Beaming/transporting is where a person dematerialises and then a few seconds later they materialise somewhere else.
Ryker, Sydney and Nigel were instantaneously transported to the Enterprise where they materialised in the transporter chamber with Sydney still kneeling down behind Ryker, with her arm around his neck, and Nigel still sat on his legs! They'd been beamed up by the transporter chief, Miles O'Brien, who upon seeing the commander apparently being choked; took out his phaser and pointed it at Sydney.
"Let the commander go!" Miles shouted, waving his weapon at her and tapping his combadge at the same time "Security to transporter Room 1… now! Commander Ryker's being attacked" he shouted with great urgency.
"On our way" Worf replied.
Sydney immediately let go of Ryker, stood up and raised her hands in the air; feeling totally confused by the predicament they were in. She anxiously looked over at the chief and then down at Nigel, who had his back to O'Brien, but was looking up at her with a frightened expression on his face having realised they were no longer in the park! Nigel turned white and nervously got up; gingerly turning around to see who it was that made Sydney look so worried. He stood next to her with his hands in the air; visibly shaking as he saw the angry Irishman pointing the strange gun towards them.
Believing they'd been in similar situations before, the two relic hunters looked around the ultra modern room for a means of escape, hoping they could get away before the security guards came in, although they could only see one door. The chief, who obviously knew Nigel, was utterly astonished when he realised it was his young friend stood before him and that he'd apparently helped with the attack on Ryker!
Miles was just about to speak to Nigel when the commander suddenly moaned, rubbed his shoulder and shouted "O'Brien!" The chief was so shocked at seeing Nigel he hadn't realised, until then, that Ryker actually needed medical attention. However, upon hearing him shout and seeing the pained expression on his face, Miles tapped his combadge again and shouted "O'Brien to Doctor Crusher!"
"Yes Miles, what's wrong" Beverly asked, hearing the panic in his voice.
"It's the commander, he's been hurt and you're not going to believe this, but Nigel's back; he's with, if I'm not mistaken, Professor Fox, in transporter Room 1!" he said, looking at the three people in transporter chamber, who all heard what he said.
"Nigel what are you doing back here son?" Miles asked, forgetting that Nigel wouldn't remember him or the fact that he'd been there before.
"I, I don't, do I know y…you?" Nigel asked hesitantly; squinting to try and get a better look. Sydney was about to ask her husband the same thing when two young security officers suddenly burst into the transporter room, holding similar weapons to the one that Miles had, and aimed them directly at them.
Upon seeing the two men coming towards them Nigel, without really thinking, stepped in front of Sydney to protect her. However, a second later Worf charged in too, looking like some kind of wild beast, causing Nigel to have panic attack and pass out! Sydney tried to catch him but he fell away from her and landed quite hard on his side. She was almost as shocked as Nigel when she saw the large and very intimidating 'creature' waving a weapon at her.
Worf too was rather stunned when he saw that Nigel was one of the people he'd been called to apprehend, yet regardless of that he wanted to go to his aid when he saw his young friend hit the floor. However, he quickly recalled that Nigel's memory had been wiped and, therefore, he wouldn't remember him, which was why he'd been so frightened in the first place and passed out; he, therefore, left Nigel where he was.
Of course, he still had to deal with Sydney Fox, whom he'd immediately recognised from the holoprograms he'd been involved in and was fully aware of her strength. However, upon meeting the real Sydney for the first time, she appeared to him to be less confident than her holographic counterpart. Nevertheless, he was taking no chances so when she started to crouch down, to check on Nigel, he shouted "stay where you are!" Sydney immediately obeyed him, which convinced Worf it was safe to leave her with his two junior officers while he discussed matters with Ryker.
At that moment Beverly came in and saw Will sitting on the floor with a very pained expression on his face. She then noticed Nigel lying nearby and her motherly instinct kicked in, making her want to attend to him first. Miles, however, quickly advised her that Nigel had only fainted but the commander appeared to be suffering and was getting quite agitated. Believing that Nigel would be fine in a few minutes she attended to Will by waving her medical tricorder over his body, which diagnosed what was wrong, and then applied a hypospray to his arm, which instantly provided some pain relief and enabled him to get up off the floor where, out of earshot of the two visitors, he explained to Worf and Miles what had happened on Earth.
While Worf was with Ryker the security guards allowed Sydney sit on the floor, as she'd asked, very politely, if she could help her husband, who was still lying motionless at her feet. She'd pulled his head onto her lap, hoping he wasn't hurt and noticed how pale he looked as she gently tapped his face to try and bring him around.
Having finished with Ryker Beverley came over to look at Nigel, waved her tricorder over him and repeated the process with Sydney, giving her a reassuring smile when she'd finished.
"You're both perfectly healthy, although Nigel has some nasty bruises on his arm and hip" the doctor said, applying the hypospray, just as he came around.
"Where am I!" Nigel moaned, giving a quick look around the room; suddenly remembering what he'd seen, as the large and angry looking creature came into his view again. Nigel's heart began to pound and a wave of fear overtook him as he cautiously whispered "S..Syd, darling, are y..you OK! He hasn't hurt you has he!"
"No Nige, I'm fine, just stay still a minute" she replied, looking quite worried as she stroked his hair to try and keep him calm.
Sydney was determined to get some questions answered, even though she was feeling quite uneasy and she, therefore, asked Beverly, in an angry tone "What happened to us! How did we get here! And… where the hell is here!"
"I'm afraid I can't tell you anything right now Professor Fox but everything will be fine" Beverly said, without taking her eyes off the very frightened looking Nigel, who still had Worf in his sight.
"It's Professor Bailey actually; so who are you?" she asked suspiciously
"Oh, you've got married! Congratulations! That's why you're both dressed so smartly! I'm Beverly Crusher I'm, obviously, a doctor." Sydney didn't bother explaining that she'd been called Bailey for quite some time now; having previously married Nigel's brother.
"Now try not to worry, someone will be along in a little while to sort this all out" Beverly said, wishing it was permissible for her to explain everything.
"Do we have a choice?" Sydney asked sarcastically, looking over at Worf and the other two security guards, who were still pointing their weapons at them.
"I'm afraid not, I'm really sorry" Beverly said, looking quite genuine.
Ryker overheard Beverly and Sydney's brief discussion and felt the need to clarify why the two relic hunters were in this predicament, explaining that it wasn't his intention to bring them here, but as Sydney wouldn't let go of him, he had no choice! He felt slightly embarrassed by the fact that this much smaller woman had overpower him, but then realised he'd been in a lot of pain and Nigel had helped her too so, perhaps, it wasn't that bad! After he'd finished his short explanation he left Beverly, Miles, Worf and the security guards with the visitors, quickly said a few more words to Miles and then rushed off to explain the position, privately, to Captain Picard.
Sydney was still none the wiser about how they'd actually got there, as what Ryker told her made little sense; although he appeared to be in a hurry to leave, so asking for further details wasn't an option.
Nigel stayed very close to Sydney and apologised for being so weak and fainting. However, Sydney understood and told him she'd almost done the same and that she'd seen how he tried to prevent the officers from reaching her. This didn't make him feel much better, as he really wanted to protect her!
"Beverley" Sydney suddenly asked "who or what is um?" she motioned with her head towards the Klingon.
"His name's Worf; please don't be alarmed, he won't hurt you or Nigel… unless you attack anyone" Beverly said, looking at Sydney and then at Nigel, who she just wanted to take in her arms and hug, although she decided not to as he was confused enough as it was. She really wished she could stay with them until the captain was free to explain the situation, but she couldn't, she had so many duties that required her attention, she simply had to leave.
Ryker had briefly told O'Brien, before he went to see the captain, what had happened at the wedding, explaining that the attack was caused by a misunderstanding. Miles, therefore, brought the two visitors some water and tried to reassure them that everything would be alright. However, realising that Sydney and Nigel were both feeling pretty shaky, not only because of Worf's intimidating presence, but because they'd been brought to this strange place in a way they could not understand, he permitted them to hug each other. This gave Nigel the opportunity to whisper into Sydney's ear and explain how he'd met Ryker when Nigella was born and that he'd felt then that he'd met him before. However, Nigel had no such feelings about this Irish guy, who seemed to know him and was being quite pleasant right now. Sydney pondered this and then it suddenly occurred to her that Ryker, and these people, might have something to do with Nigel's missing years, which when she mentioned it to Nigel, quite unnerved him!
About an hour later the captain entered the transporter room and smiled at the new arrivals.
"Hello, I'm Jean Luc Picard, I'm the captain of this ship; I believe you're Sydney Bailey and I actually already know Nigel, although he won't remember me; or anyone else here" he said looking at the pair of them; Ryker having already advised him of the confusion at the wedding and that, unfortunately, Miles had let slip that he knew Nigel and that they'd seen Worf. This being the case he really had no choice, if he wanted to return them home without being traumatised, but to explain a few things. He also considered that Nigel deserved to have an explanation, as he'd been so cooperative when he'd previously been on board and had sacrificed his own happiness to ensure the timeline progressed correctly.
He was just about to start the explanation when Sydney, who was obviously feeling very frustrated by being held prisoner, shouted "What the hell do you mean…ship! What ship is this and how is it you all seem to know Nigel!" She looked very baffled and annoyed as she stared at the captain waiting for a reply.
"Sydney, I'm sorry you find yourself in this position but if you'll just calm down I'll try and explain matters" the captain said, noticing Sydney take hold of Nigel's hand.
"What I'm about to tell you might come as a bit of a shock but you're actually…. well…. on a space ship from the 24th century; this ship is called The Enterprise" Jean Luc said, wondering how they'd respond, although he remembered Nigel's previous reaction to this. The captain immediately noticed the sceptical look on Sydney's face as she, quite clearly, thought he was mad. However, he continued "You'll recall, I'm sure, that Nigel went missing … well…. that was because he was on board this ship and that, of course, is how we all know him" he said, believing he knew precisely what Sydney would say next, although Nigel was clearly too shocked to speak!
"Space ship, don't be ridiculous! Just what the hell did you do to him you monsters! He was traumatised by whatever it was!" she said angrily, wondering if what Jean Luc had said was actually possible, as they were definitely in an unusual room and then there was Worf''..…well he could be an alien.
She felt so powerless, something she wasn't used to, but the door was guarded, so there was no chance of escape and besides, Nigel was now so stunned by the captain's explanation, he wouldn't be able to run right now if he tried. He was holding onto Sydney tightly, trying to steady himself; wanting desperately to know what had happened to him, yet fearing what he might hear at the same time.
"Sydney, please try to relax and listen! I'm sorry, but you are in outer space, just behind the Moon actually" the captain said, realising how difficult it was going to be to explain things without making himself, and the members of his crew, sound like evil kidnappers. He really needed to show them that he wasn't a bad person and, therefore, noticing Nigel looked quite ill, he helped him to sit on the floor, there being no chairs or other furniture in this futuristic room and then offered them food and more water. Of course, having eaten a huge meal at their wedding reception, neither wanted food, but they accepted the water.
"Look Sydney" Jean Luc said "I think it might be best if I start from the beginning, but please don't interrupt me, let me finish what I have to say as it's quite complicated."
Sydney just stared at him not knowing really what to think, as Captain Jean Luc Picard certainly appeared to be genuine, although it just sounded so farfetched.
The captain went on "I'm sure you'll recall, just before Nigel disappeared, you received a telephone call from your friend, Harry Platt, who asked you to go to the Grand Canyon to search for some relics." Sydney nodded. "Well it was actually us that made that call, using a computer to imitate Harry's voice. We needed to ensure you'd believe it was him and that you'd want to go and see him. A little while before that, while you were in England, we infected Nigel with a virus, nothing dangerous I assure you, it was just to ensure that, one way or another, he'd feel unable to go relic hunting with you. Although, just to make absolutely certain you didn't drag him off to the airport, immediately after we'd called, we'd checked earlier that Nigel had left his rucksack at home; thus he'd have to go there to get it. It was while he was at his front door that we sedated him and then transported him here."
Nigel tried to speak but all he could get out was "wa..what!" and squeezed Sydney's hand, hoping she'd ask why he'd been taken. Although Sydney was desperate to speak she realised it would be best to let the man continue, as he was certainly knowledgeable about the circumstances leading up to Nigel's disappearance. She, therefore, put her arm around Nigel's shoulders to try and relax him.
Jean Luc could see that Nigel was getting upset but he still continued "before we left with Nigel we removed his passport from his rucksack in his apartment, thus ensuring you'd initially believe he was travelling abroad. Of course, we realised you'd be extremely distressed when he didn't contact you after a while, but there was little we could do about that; I'm sorry."
"Why couldn't you have sent some computerised messages from him, to put my mind at rest?" Sydney asked, looking really annoyed.
"I'm afraid it was actually necessary for you to believe he wasn't coming back for quite some time, as I'll explain later. Now, you'll have probably noticed we returned his passport to his apartment when we brought him back to Earth." Sydney nodded again, but she actually wanted to interrupt once more, as she'd so many questions; however, Jean Luc stopped her and continued "we were going to leave it in Nigel's pocket when we left him outside the hospital; however, because he was so deeply asleep, it could have been stolen and we realised too that, with his passport in his pocket, he'd have been immediately identified; something we didn't want happening too fast. You see we'd given him some drugs which, I promise, were very necessary, as we didn't want him woken too soon; because that could have had a detrimental effect on him. We were pretty sure the doctors would just let him sleep if nobody was pushing to wake him."
"That was a terrible thing you did captain!" Sydney shouted, not able to hold her tongue any longer "Preston and I were out of our minds with worry, why the hell did you need him so badly anyway! And why, in heavens name, didn't you want me thinking he'd be back soon? I was devastated!"
"Sydney, I'm really sorry for causing you so much grief, it was entirely my fault, but we did it because it was so vitally important to everyone on this ship and to the people of the 24th century, that he was kept here."
"But why!" she yelled
"Yes! What could possibly be so important that you had to take me like that, and drug me too!" Nigel said; managing to find his voice at last, although it was rather squeaky as he was so nervous.
"Sydney… Nigel…. don't get so agitated and I'll try and explain" Jean Luc said, realising that what he had to say was going to be very difficult for both of them.
There then followed a short conversation where the Captain explained, very basically, about the disruption of the timeline and why they had to get Preston over to America to marry Sydney and ultimately produce Nigella to correct it. Sydney realised then that these people knew exactly how she felt about Nigel before his disappearance which, naturally, explained why they didn't want her thinking he'd be coming back soon!
"I know I should have thought it through more carefully" Jean Luc said, looking quite guilty "Doctor Crusher was extremely angry with me for handling it so badly; I can tell you!"
Nigel was quite stunned by the explanation but managed to say "what I don't understand is why it mattered if I was around or not. OK, I'd have been angry about Sydney dating and marrying Preston, but so what, I wouldn't have murdered my own brother you know! Don't you think what you did was a bit extreme!"
"Nigel, I think your wife knows exactly why" Jean Luc said, looking at Sydney.
"I guess what you're getting at is that if Nigel had stayed around, we'd have fallen in love and married a whole lot sooner and none of the things that happened while he was on this ship, would have occurred; including the birth of my daughter."
Jean Luc smiled at Sydney and Nigel looked at her with his mouth agape and said "dar..darling I had no idea you felt like that about me back then!….But I loved you from the moment I saw you" he said, putting his arms around her waist and pulling her close.
"Nige, when we first met you were too young and inexperienced to know what love was, it was just a crush honey, that's all" she said looking adoringly into his eyes.
"No Syd, it wasn't, I've always loved you, I.. I was always too shy and scared to say anything; after all, the men you dated were well… so different; I could never have competed with them" he said, looking down shyly and blushing.
Sydney smiled, kissed him gently and said "honey we can talk about this another time" hoping, if he really did feel that way all of the time, that she hadn't hurt his feelings too much with the way she behaved.
The newlyweds hugged each other for a few more minutes and then Nigel began to wonder more about his previous visit to the ship and said "Sir, there's a couple of things still bothering me."
"Only a couple!" Jean Luc said, jokingly.
Nigel smiled and said "yes well maybe a few more, but I really want to know why I can't remember being here before and why, when you returned me to Earth, after three years, I looked and felt more or less exactly the same? Did you, um, give me something to keep me looking young? I certainly didn't look 27"
Jean Luc put his arm around Nigel's shoulders and explained how it had actually only taken six weeks to get the timeline back on track and that during that time they'd gradually moved forward in time; so when he arrived home it was three years later!
Nigel was staggered and said "bloody hell; that means I was still 24 when you sent me home!"
"That's correct Nigel" Jean Luc said, noticing how pleased the young man looked.
Sydney, of course, understood too but felt a little perturbed, although she didn't say anything to her husband or Jean Luc. Nigel, on the other hand, was delighted as it had always bothered him that three years of his life had been stolen!
"Sir I'm so glad you cleared that up for me, but um, you still haven't said why I can't remember being here" Nigel said, recalling Jean Luc had mentioned drugging him before they returned him to Earth and considering now that that might have caused his amnesia.
"Well Nigel, while you were here not only did you see a lot of futuristic inventions but because we wanted to you understand why we needed you here, we told you certain things about the future which, by rights, we shouldn't have. As I explained earlier, it's very dangerous to know the future as you could either deliberately, or accidentally, change it which, of course, would then mean the timeline would be off track again" the captain said, noticing that both Sydney and Nigel were hanging on his every word. He then explained about the process they used to erase Nigel's memory and the fact that Beverly had left memories of his parents in his brain that would surface as dreams, although he didn't go into any detail about the Holodeck where those memories came from, as he felt that was unnecessary.
Nigel was a little shaken by that but both he and Sydney, being very intelligent people, understood the necessity and he'd never had any problems with his memory since.
"Are you going to erase our memories before you send us home this time?" Nigel asked, hoping they wouldn't.
"No, we don't need to do that as nobody has revealed anything to either of you about the future, apart from Nigella being very important one day. Of course, you already know how stupid it would be to tell anyone you'd been abducted by aliens because, obviously, your credibility would be lost. We're actually perfectly happy with Nigel knowing why he was needed here before, because everything we told him has already happened, so even if you do tell people about this when you get home, it won't affect the future" Jean Luc said, quite truthfully.
"So what has Nigella actually got to do with this" Sydney asked, suddenly feeling worried again as being important could mean anything.
"I'm very sorry but as I said, I can't reveal the future to you, all I can say is that she'll make you extremely proud of her and that she's crucial to our very existence!" the captain said, quite seriously.
Sydney and Nigel both looked surprised and then Nigel had another thought and asked, realising he'd been home for quite a while now "um, Sir, if the timeline's back on track, why are you still here?"
"Well son that's because the Enterprise, as I said before, has been moving forward, and occasionally backwards, in time so, in fact, it's only been ten days since you left the ship, and there are still a few things that we need to check, a bit further on in the future, before we can go back to our own time. We have to be absolutely certain about everything before we leave" the captain said, hoping neither of them would insist on more information.
Understanding Jean Luc's reasoning, but wanting to learn more about where Nigel had been, Sydney decided to ask "would you mind if we have a tour of the ship? I'd really love to see it before we go home."
Jean Luc was a little worried about that as he didn't want anything to complicate their return to Earth. However, he thought he'd ask Nigel how he felt about seeing the ship and he replied "I'd like to, if that's OK with you!"
The captain was rather surprised that Nigel actually wanted to do that, believing he'd prefer to get away as quickly as possible; although he then remembered how devoted Nigel had always been to Sydney and realised he'd probably do anything to please his beautiful wife!
"Well I suppose it'll be alright if I just show you the quarters you stayed when you were last here Nigel, it's got large windows, so you'll be able to see outside" the captain said, guiding them through the transporter room door and along a couple of corridors. Sydney and Nigel both felt quite apprehensive, yet excited at the same time, at the prospect of seeing some physical proof that they were in outer space. However, there was nothing that could have prepared them for magnificent views of the Moon and stars that greeted them as they entered Nigel's old room! They both stood there with their mouths agape and their hearts thumping as they gazed out of the windows as never in a million years did they think they'd see something so spectacular.
"Isn't it beautiful?" The captain said, waving his hand towards the windows as he watched Sydney and Nigel's reactions.
"It's absolutely breathtaking!" Sydney said, putting her arm around Nigel as they gingerly walked towards the windows "it cert…certainly is" Nigel said, his mouth still agape as he wondered what he thought about this first time he'd been there.
Nigel slowly walked around the room trying to see if he recognised anything at all, but he didn't, which was a little upsetting as he felt he should, even if his memory had been interfered with. He felt a little sad and then, to his utter astonishment, he noticed something very familiar indeed and shouted "Hey, that's my bear! How the hell did it get here!" He felt quite bewildered as he'd left his bear at home in America before he flew to London to get married.
"Nigel it's just a replica of your bear, Beverly Crusher wanted you to have something to make you feel more at home; she looked after you like a mother while you were here" the captain said, smiling at Nigel.
"But it looks exactly the same; it even has the same bit of fir missing from its back!" Nigel said, examining the bear.
"Well it's a very good replica Nigel" Jean Luc said, not wanting to give him information about how they can now replicate almost anything.
Seeing the bear completely convinced Nigel that he'd been there before and that these people, particularly Doctor Crusher; must have been very kind to him to have gone to such lengths to make him feel comfortable. He also felt such total relief that he'd finally found out what had happened to him, as not only had he felt cheated out of three years of his life, but he'd been terrified of discovering something horrific had happened! Sadly, he realised he wouldn't be able to tell Preston the truth, although he really wished he could. He knew his brother still fretted about those missing years, as he'd get quite upset if Nigel didn't keep in regular contact with him.
Jean Luc could see that Nigel was looking a lot happier, which eased his guilt somewhat about the treatment he'd given to the young man, realising that now, with the timeline back on track, many of the things that Nigel wants will be possible and, of course, the main thing had already happened, as he'd married Sydney!
Having been on the ship for several hours they'd both started wondering how they were going to explain to their guests, at the wedding reception; where they'd been! Nigel looked very worried and said "my nanny and brother will be worried sick about us; we've been gone for ages!"
"Don't fret about that Nigel, we can go back in time fractionally and place you back on Earth just a little while after you left; your family and guests will be none the wiser and you can just say you didn't catch the man you were chasing" the captain said, hoping that made sense to them. "Oh and by the way, I don't think it will cause any problem to the timeline if I reveal that you're both going to live long and very happy lives and be extremely successful; so you can just relax and enjoy the rest of your special day, alright?"
They both smiled, as by now they were quite ready to be sent back to Earth and were delighted that they'd been provided with the knowledge that Nigella would be important to the future of the world, even if they didn't know how, and that they'll be happy and do well.
Before the captain sent the two visitors home he considered that several people on board the Enterprise might like the opportunity to see Nigel again; even though it had only been ten days since they'd last seen him. He, therefore, gave the order that any crew members who wished to say a final farewell to him should assemble in the transporter room and wait there.
Sydney and Nigel had no idea who most of the people were, but Jean Luc explained that everyone there had previously been a good friend of Nigel's or had interacted with him in some way. Beverly, of course, knew Nigel the best and realised he was feeling a little awkward and, therefore, to break the ice, she introduced him and Sydney to Guinan, Deanna, Geordi and finally Data.
Upon seeing the worried expression on Nigel's face, as he looked at the pale faced 'man' the doctor explained who Data was. Nigel was, once again, quite astonished that an android could be so human; as was Sydney!
Feeling a little more relaxed, having met several people whom they liked very much, Sydney enjoyed hearing about what Nigel got up to on his previous visit, although it brought to Nigel's mind the embarrassing, yet comical, stories his nanny told about him when he was a small child; of course, he could, at least, remember doing most of those things!
As Nigel was looking quite happy talking with the crew, Beverly took the opportunity to call Sydney over, having noticed earlier that her beautiful white wedding suit was grass stained; obviously from her tussle with Will! Realising that a bride would generally be quite unhappy about that, Beverly waved a strange looking device over her clothes and the stains disappeared! Sydney hadn't noticed the dirt until then, not being the fussy type and being quite used to dust and grime, but she was pleased, nonetheless, to see it clean. Beverly then whispered something in Sydney's ear, which initially delighted her; then, for some unknown reason, the delight on her face disappeared, only to be replaced by concern, as she looked across the room at her handsome husband. She forced a smile back on her face, not wishing anyone to notice how anxious she was feeling and returned to Nigel's side.
As Sydney watched Deanna and Guinan hug Nigel very tightly and then notice Beverly do the same, it became very apparent to her that those women really cared about him and any fears she might have had, at the back of her mind, about Nigel's treatment on board the ship, completely vanished. She felt the same when she saw Geordi, Will, Miles and Jean Luc either hug him or shake his hand.
Data, on the other hand, not being human, was different, but Sydney could still tell that he liked Nigel and that he must have interacted with her husband a lot.
Worf, not wanting to frighten Nigel, had stayed to one side of the room and watched the gathering. However, realising that Data could go on for hours talking to the young man, he interrupted them, being very careful not to appear aggressive, which was actually quite difficult for the Klingon! He smiled at Nigel and told him not to be alarmed, advising that they'd become good friends when he was previously on the ship and that he was sorry for scaring him earlier. Nigel nervously smiled back; and said "um, it's nice to meet you um, Sir."
"Nigel, please call me Worf, we are friends, remember?" Worf said, holding out his large hand for Nigel to shake.
"Um yes Sir; um Worf" Nigel said; taking the Klingon's hand to shake it; hoping that the large 'man' wouldn't squeeze too hard! Worf was, in fact, very gentle, as he recalled Beverly's warning from a few weeks back, to remember that 'Nigel is not Klingon!' Worf genuinely liked Nigel, regardless of whether or not they had a lot in common and congratulated him sincerely on marrying such a beautiful warrior!
Once Nigel had finished speaking to Worf he thought of one more thing that he wanted to find out before he was sent back home and to do that he needed to speak to Beverly who'd been watching him and Worf the entire time.
"Um Doctor, could I please ask you something?" he said, looking a little embarrassed and taking hold of her arm to guide her away from everyone else.
"What is it sweetie?" she asked, noticing he was blushing.
"Um, well you know when I was here before?" he smiled shyly "did you um, well um, did you remove, you know?" Nigel said, indicating behind him with his head.
"Oh you mean the scars! Yes I did sweetie, but don't tell Jean Luc, I wasn't supposed to do that! I just wanted to help you be more confident and I felt that that kind of imperfection was holding you back. Has it helped Nigel?" Beverly asked; noticing Nigel was now scarlet!
"Yes, thank you" he said very quickly, looking around to see if anyone else heard what she said, and feeling quite glad that they hadn't!
As Nigel was gazing around the room he noticed Commander Ryker stood by himself near the transporter console and thought, once again, how familiar he looked. He wondered, for a moment, if that was because he'd met him when he was previously on the ship, although as he couldn't remember anything else he thought that was unlikely. Therefore, bearing in mind everything he'd heard about time travel, he decided to ask Will if they'd actually met in the past, other than at the hospital that one time.
Will looked quite surprised by the question but decided there was no harm in telling Nigel things about the past and said "actually both you and your brother have met me before; when you were children!" Nigel looked really intrigued as Ryker continued "You were both playing in a fenced off area of a park and had I not been there, both you and Preston would have been killed by a car that swerved out of control, knocked down the fence and careered into the playground!"
Nigel, even though he was only two years old at the time, remembered the incident quite clearly and then recalled it was Ryker who'd picked him up out of the sandpit, grabbed hold of Preston and carried them both to safety; just seconds before the car came to a halt right where they'd been playing! He also remembered that by the time Louisa Wright, who'd been buying some ice cream from a van parked by the playground, turned around; Ryker had vanished!
"Sir you saved me and my brother's life! Thank you, thank you so much….. but….. how did you know that, and those other things, were going to happen?" Nigel asked, feeling completely stunned by what he'd been told.
Ryker explained how a time traveller had visited them on the Enterprise and warned them of the disruption to the timeline and of the horrible future that would become a reality if things were not reversed.
Nigel looked fascinated as Ryker went on "it was that time traveller who provided us with the details of the first change to the timeline and what had to be done to correct it. That's why I had to go back in time to just a few minutes before the change occurred; to prevent it happening and keep the timeline as it should be. Nigel, that's when I saved your lives because, obviously, in the alternate timeline, both you and you brother were killed!" Nigel was dumbfounded as Ryker went on "however, a second attempt was made to disrupt things when you and Sydney were in England and she began to fall in love with you when, in the correct timeline, she'd have initially fallen for Preston" the commander said, looking at Nigel who'd been listening so carefully.
"So um, how exactly did the timeline get altered Sir?" Nigel asked, noticing Ryker give him a wide smile.
"I thought that's what you were going to ask and I supposed Captain Picard won't mind me telling you this time, we kept it from you before though, because you were so frightened. You see Nigel; it was actually changed by an entity called Q, who's a very powerful being! He can travel through time, stop time, cause or prevent death, create life and Nigel; he can make people do things they'd no intention of doing, like with Sydney! He appears on the Enterprise from time to time and usually causes us a few problems by using his powers; although he mostly acts like a mischievous child and treats us like his toys! The reason he apparently changed the timeline was because he'd grown bored with us and wanted to see what we'd be like in an alternate future. The thing is; he didn't like what we became when he changed things, as we were aggressive and not so easily played with; so he intended to change it back. Then, just for fun, he decided he might enjoy watching us repair the timeline and that's what we were doing when we brought you here" Ryker said; realising Nigel was looking quite shocked. "Nigel, don't worry, Q won't ever do that again, he hated what we became!"
"I guess he won't, but he does sound like a rather spoilt child!" Nigel said, wondering what this Q character looked like.
"Actually Nigel, that's exactly how he behaves!" the commander said, suddenly noticing that Jean Luc was trying to attract his attention; so he excused himself.
Once everyone had said their goodbyes, Will directed Sydney and Nigel to the transporter chamber and told them to stand very still; which made them feel a little nervous! However, Ryker reminded them that it was completely painless and that Nigel had been transported three times and he was fine, as was the entire crew who beam in and out of the ship all the time. This calmed them a little but just as they thought they were going to be beamed out, Jean Luc put a small silver tube into Nigel's hand and said "son, don't open that until you've been on your honeymoon and have returned to work, you'll regret it if you do. You don't need to know what's in it; just that it's something you'll be delighted with at the right time, so do you promise?"
Nigel looked confused but said "Um, yes Sir, alright" but then he noticed Sydney eyeing the tube suspiciously and realised she needed a bit of reassurance that the content of the tube was nothing to worry about, remembering she always hated anything on a 'need to know basis!'
Jean Luc saw the look too and said "Sydney, all it is is a gift which I think you should open when you're both back at work. It'll make you particularly happy, but Nigel will be glad to have it too, as long as you open it after your honeymoon; so will you do that?"
By now Sydney felt she could trust the captain and promised she would forget about it for a couple of weeks, although, secretly, she wasn't sure that she could!
Jean Luc got off the transporter platform; they heard the words "two to beam down" and the next thing they knew they were stood next to the tree where they'd fought with Ryker! Everything looked exactly as it did before they'd been to the Enterprise and, luckily, nobody was around to see them reappear. They, therefore, made their way back to the hotel hoping that what Jean Luc said about only a little while passing was correct.
As soon as they entered the lobby they were relieved to see that Louisa was still sitting in the same chair where she'd been talking to Ryker, although she was now sitting with Preston, stroking his hair. The moment Louisa saw them come through the door she jumped up and asked "did you catch him?"
"Oh no nana, he got away" Nigel said, smiling and giving her an innocent look, hoping she couldn't tell he was lying. Louisa, of course, had known Nigel all his life and knew when he was keeping something from her, however, she chose not to quiz him about it as, after all, he was an adult and as such he didn't have to tell her everything. Nevertheless she did give him a knowing look, which made Nigel blush!
Preston looked very upset and putting his hands on Nigel's shoulders he shook him a couple of times, and said "don't you dare do that again! That man was twice your size; he could have killed you if you'd have gotten into a fight!"
"Sorry Pres" Nigel replied, looking down at the floor "I didn't mean to worry you; I doubt we'll see him again….um, he was probably just a party crasher." He gave his big brother an apologetic look, hoping he'd leave it at that.
"Yes, I suppose so" Preston said "I definitely didn't know him"
"Oh well, it doesn't look as if the guy did any harm so let's just forget about it and enjoy the rest of the day" Nigel said, looking at Preston and Louisa who were giving him a look that meant 'we know you're not telling us everything!'
Nigel continued to blush and then he turned to Sydney and said "I need a drink; what about you?"
"Definitely" she replied, taking hold of Nigel's hand as they walked quickly back into the Orchid Room.
As they walked through the door the band began to play some lovely romantic music, prompting Nigel to gently pull Sydney into his arms to dance. At first their guests applauded them but after a few minutes they joined them on the dance floor, obviously, thinking what a stunning looking couple they were.
As the newlyweds danced Sydney's mind started to wonder as she mulled over the events of the past few hours. Nigel was quick to notice she was distracted and asked "darling, are you OK? You look worried, what is it? Is it to do with, you know….. being up there?"
"I guess I was thinking about it… sorry… oh… let's forget it for now honey, we'll talk later, OK?" she said, smiling at her adorable young husband. He held her gently and they began to kiss but Nigel, being quite sensitive, could still tell she had something on her mind, although he considered it might have something to do with the silver tube in his pocket. However, not wishing to make matters worse by pressing her for an explanation, he said nothing more about it, realising from experience, she'd tell him in her own good time.
The wedding reception went really well, just as they'd hoped it would. The newlyweds danced to the band, watched Rex Rolands do some more magic tricks and talked with as many guests as possible. People constantly came up to them to wish them happiness and good fortune, although a few people rudely commented on how strange it was that Nigel had married his brother's ex wife! Sydney and Nigel just ignored that and referred them to Preston; who was very happily dancing with Nigel's ex girlfriend, Cate!
When the last of their guests had either gone to bed or left, the bride and groom retired to bed too, although It was midnight before they'd managed to get away from the last stragglers who, obviously, had absolutely no idea what an extremely long day they'd had!
They were staying in the bridal suite at the Dorchester, which was elegantly decorated in various shades of blue and was really quite enormous, consisting of several rooms; the bedroom having one of the biggest double beds they'd ever seen!
Although Nigel was very tired, he felt on top of the world; he'd gotten married to the most wonderful woman in the world; had discovered that he'd only missed six weeks of his life, instead of three years, and he actually knew he was going to have a very happy life!
Sydney was feeling much the same, apart from, deep down; she was worrying about a couple of things she needed to discuss with Nigel.
Having showered, cleaned his teeth and put on his blue silk dressing gown, Nigel came out of the bathroom and looked at Sydney, who'd already showered and was lying on top of the bed wearing an exquisite white lace negligee. His heart began pounding; the love he felt for her was almost overwhelming and tears of joy pooled up in his eyes as he walked over and climbed on top of the huge bed with her. He looked into her eyes and was about to put his arms around her when she smiled and said "Nige, can we talk for a few minutes?"
"Um, yes of course Syd; what um would you like to talk about?" he asked, suddenly noticing she wasn't making eye contact with him. "Are you still worrying about something darling, is it that tube?"
"I guess I am a little, Nige but it's not about the tube" she replied, looking down at the floor.
"What is it then? Tell me please; did I do something wrong!" he asked, feeling a little nervous.
"No honey, you haven't" she said, half smiling "it's just, well.. you remember what Jean Luc said about you only being on the ship for six weeks; yet three years had passed down here?"
"Yes, of course I do, I know it's really odd; but it's a lot better than some of the things that had gone through my mind!" he said, wondering where this was going.
"You do realise that that means I'm physically eleven years older than you, don't you?" she said, looking into his sweet face which, although he'd celebrated his 29th birthday just a couple of months before, he was still quite baby-faced; obviously, because he was actually only 26!
"Syd, no! You're not thinking I'm too young for you, surely!" he said with alarm; jumping off the bed and looking at her in shock.
"No Nige, the other way round" she said looking at him to see his reaction.
"What! I don't care about that, I never did care; eight years, eleven or twenty years, I love you; age has nothing to do with it!" he said, looking deeply concerned.
"Nigel I'm 37, it seems such a big age gap and as I get older you'll notice me losing my looks and you'll probably want someone younger" she said, feeling the need to be truthful.
"That's utter rubbish Syd! Do you remember how devastated I was when Cate dumped me because of my age? How could you think I'd do something as hypocritical as that to you, I love you more than life itself!" he said, meaning every word, his voice practically screeching.
"Honey are you sure, really sure?... because I love you more than that!" she said; the tears falling down her face realising, of course, that this was not just some idiotic kid who wouldn't know the difference between love and a carrot! This was Nigel, her wonderful intelligent and adorable Nigel.
"Yes Syd, of course I'm sure, there's nobody else on this planet I want" Nigel said, suddenly noticing her smiling from ear to ear. "Of course, I may want a woman who looks like Worf in a couple of years as well" he said, doubling over with laughter.
She jumped off the bed and caught hold of him, slapped him on the behind and yelled "get on that bed right now, you little devil!" He leapt on the bed, quickly followed by Sydney and they hugged, kissed and giggled and then, of course, consummated their marriage.
Feeling so content Nigel was ready to go to sleep, but as he turned to his wife to say goodnight he noticed she was, once again, deep in thought. Wondering what it was this time he sleepily asked "what is it darling? You're surly not still worrying about that silly age thing are you?"
"No, it's not that honey" she said, sitting up on the bed with her hands on her stomach.
"Then what's bothering you? Please tell me or I'll never get to sleep" he said, putting on that innocent look he'd use earlier with his nanny and Preston.
"Honey, do you remember when Beverly called me over, just before they beamed us off the ship?" she asked.
"Yes, of course, I saw her wave that thing that cleaned your suit" he replied, wondering what the problem was.
"Well she didn't just do that, she told me something I guess you should know, although I'm not sure you'll be happy about it right at this moment; but it's kind of important" she said, being rather vague.
"What did she say Syd? Was it something about me? They didn't do something weird to me… did they!" he asked, feeling quite concerned.
Sydney looked into his eyes and said "I'm sure they didn't do anything more than keep you there Nige. It's just…. well I'm pregnant…. you're going to be a father… a father of twins!"
Nigel eyes almost popped out of their sockets and he jumped up and screamed "What! Is it true! You're not joking are you!" he said, with the biggest smile ever on his face.
"No honey, I'm not joking, it's true; are you pleased?" she asked, smiling really widely, as it was perfectly clear, he was ecstatic!
"Syd it's the best news I've ever had!" He jumped on the bed, knelt in front of her and then hugged her very tightly saying "you are certain about this aren't you? It's not just because Doctor Crusher told you, is it?"
"No, I'm certain Nige, I've been suspicious for a couple of weeks; Beverly just confirmed it. Apparently when she waved that thing at you, after you fainted, it told her what was wrong; but when she waved it at me, it told her I was pregnant with twins! Honey, I thought you'd be terrified of the responsibility so soon after getting married" Sydney said, realising, once again, that this was Nigel, not one of those idiots she used to date!
"I guess I am a little scared Syd;….. but I'll get over it!" Nigel said, as he snuggled up to her again, let out a satisfied sigh and fell asleep with a smile on his face.
They spent the next two weeks in England visiting many other places they'd been relic hunting in the past; places like Chepstow Castle, Tintern Abbey and Stonehenge; only this time they behaved like tourists and enjoyed having the chance to take in the beauty of the English and Welsh countryside. Nigel was delighted to be able to show Sydney around London too, something he'd wanted to do for a long time and he made sure she enjoyed every moment of it.
Then all too soon it was time to leave and they called in to collect Nigella from the London house where she'd been staying with her father, enabling the newlyweds to have some time alone. Preston had employed a babysitter to entertain Nigella, but Louisa actually looked after her with quite a lot of help from Preston, who enjoyed being a father, as long as he had help with his daughter, whom he considered was as bright as Nigel when he was an infant.
While they were in the drawing room getting ready to leave, Preston gave Nigel his usual lecture about ensuring that, whilst he was on a hunt, he didn't attempt to fight anyone bigger than himself and to remember to call at least twice a week to let him know he was safe. This overprotective behaviour began when Nigel reappeared after those three years, as Preston had been so distraught; he'd never quite got over it.
Since Nigel now knew the truth about where he'd been, he seriously considered fabricating a story about what had happened to help alleviate Preston's worries. The problem was; he was useless at lying and Preston was almost as good as Louisa at spotting when he was hiding something. Therefore, Nigel considered the best course of action was to do as Preston asked, because he hated his brother and Louisa constantly worrying about him and it wasn't that much to ask anyway.
As soon as the newlyweds got back home the first thing Sydney wanted to do was find out what was in the silver tube that Jean Luc gave Nigel. Nigel was very curious too, so even before they went back to Trinity they sat in the kitchen at home and opened it. To their astonishment there was a letter inside, from Jean Luc, which advised that they'd used their sophisticated technology, on board the Enterprise, to locate the cavern in the Grand Canyon where those Hopi relics were hidden; the same cavern that the Hopi's had been searching for for two hundred years! The letter went on to say that had they not been inadvertently beamed to the Enterprise they would have still received this gift, although it would have been placed in their bedroom, with little or no explanation! He also told them that Miles O'Brien had already beamed down into the cavern to ensure it was the correct place; so all they had to do now was find it. To help them with that there was a small map which explained exactly where the entrance to the cavern was. Sydney wanted to get on a plane for Vegas that very night but, of course, they had to go back to work the following day.
Nigel smiled at Sydney and said "I think I know why Captain Picard didn't want that opened before we'd been on our honeymoon now!"
On their first day back at work they found their office, which they now shared, was completely full of gifts and flowers from many of their colleagues and students. Everyone at Trinity, including the Dean, was delighted that the two of them had married, even though, in the past, it was frowned upon to have married couples on staff. They, of course, ignored the rules when Sydney married Preston but they completely changed them once Sydney and Nigel got engaged, as they were so worried that the valuable couple would leave!
On the Friday evening, after work, Sydney went to her father's house to explain to Nigella that she'd have to stay with her granddad and Jenny for a couple of nights as mummy and Uncle Nigel had to do something that little girls wouldn't enjoy. Feeling a little guilty, bearing in mind they'd so recently left her with Preston, they flew off to Vegas having promised to bring her back a really nice present.
Las Vegas was always a fun place to be, but this time all they wanted to do was find the Hopi relics and get back home to Nigella. Therefore, immediately upon arrival, they hired a Jeep and drove to the Grand Canyon, making sure they had with them a camera, plenty of ropes, torches and, of course, Nigel's laptop. Using the map from the tube they quickly located the entrance to the cavern and very gingerly made their way through a series of tunnels noticing, as they got further in, some amazing paintings on the walls. Both Sydney and Nigel were fascinated by the paintings but, for now, Nigel very carefully photographed them, realising they could spend hours working out what each one meant. To ensure they'd be able to find their way out, they drew arrows on the walls with chalk, all pointing towards the entrance; as otherwise that could be difficult to find.
As they walked deeper and deeper into the tunnels they started to think they might have taken a wrong turning, as they began to notice piles of bones lying on the floor, which were, in fact, human! Nigel really hated that, although he'd grown used to seeing them on various hunts over the years and very carefully stepped over them. He was then taken completely by surprise as he came face to face with a large skull, stuck on the end of a stick, which he believed was a warning to keep intruders out! Of course, Sydney wasn't going to be put off by that and kept moving forward with Nigel staying quite close to her side.
After walking past the skull for about ten minutes, they came to what looked like a dead end; however, Sydney noticed a small crack on the left side of the wall and was able to locate a tiny lever inside, which she, quite naturally, pulled down. There was a loud rumble and a lot of dust came gushing towards them, causing Nigel to grabbed hold of Sydney and pulled her to the floor, just seconds before a stream of arrows shot out from some well disguised holes in the tunnel walls!
"Thanks Nigel!" Sydney said, almost choking in the dust.
"You OK Syd! Are the babies alright!" Nigel yelled; suddenly realising he'd twisted his arm when he'd pulled Sydney to the ground.
"Yeah, you OK honey" she asked, noticing his face looked like he was hurting.
"I could do with a bit of that spray stuff that Doctor Crusher had, but really, I'm fine, let's just see if we can find the cavern and get the hell out of here!" Nigel said, putting on a brave face and helping her up, with his good arm.
It was obvious this was no dead end and a few minutes later they managed to locate a further lever, in the same crack, but lower down. This time they pulled it up and to their utter astonishment a large hole appeared in the floor; about three feet away from them! They carefully crawled to the edge and were stunned and delighted to see a massive cave below, full of what they could only assume were Hopi artefacts! Luckily, leading right from the edge of the hole was a sloping expanse of rock, which they were able to half walk and half slide down, having tied ropes around a jagged piece of rock at the top of the hole, and round their waists; ensuring they wouldn't slip or slide too fast. They soon reached the main cave, which was absolutely amazing and, as luck would have it, there was a small amount of light coming from some holes in the cavern ceiling. There were some small pools of water scattered here and there, obviously, from rain coming though the cave roof, but the main cave was basically dry and had, obviously, not flooded when the Hopi's used the cave or even after they left.
They spent over three hours down there documenting as much as possible, taking photographs and discussing what they considered the various items were used for. As they started to get ready to leave they realised that this had to be one of the most important finds of Native American artefacts ever made and, therefore, it would not only be good for the Hopi's, but good for them too!
Sydney was ecstatic, as was Nigel, but he wanted leave as soon as possible as he couldn't help worrying about Sydney as, after all, she was carrying those two very precious babies and he, therefore, considered that the sooner they were back in Las Vegas, the better! He didn't say too much about his concerns, but Sydney noticed he was watching her like a hawk!
"Let's get back to the hotel and arrange for a doctor to look at your arm honey" Sydney said, trying to make him see that she was just fine and far more worried about him. "While you're with the doctor Nige I'll ring the Heard Museum to arrange a full inspection of the site and they can take it from there."
"Yes Syd, if you must, but then you can get some food inside you and a good night's sleep!" Nigel said; picking up the last of piece of equipment and stuffing it into his bag, trying not to wince too much as his arm was beginning to throb.
It was very easy for them to find the way out of the cavern and in less than a couple of hours they were back in Las Vegas, where Nigel got his arm attended to and then put the photographs onto the computer.
Sydney, at Nigel's insistence, allowed him to attend to the legal paperwork while she discussed the relics with the curator of the Heard Museum. Once that was complete, which took a couple of days, they went back to Trinity with several pieces of pottery that the museum had donated to the college; there being numerous items of a similar nature in the cavern. The college were, once again, delighted to be the recipients of such amazing artefacts which, of course, proved how right they were not to allow the two relic hunting teachers to go elsewhere to work!
Nigel had never been so happy in all of his life. He'd had such a difficult past but now everything was going right for a change. He was simply thrilled at the idea of being a father and having helped with Nigella so much, he was not overly daunted by the fact that Sydney was expecting, except that it was twins this time…. his twins!
He needn't have worried, as seven months later Sydney gave birth to two beautiful boys, one they called Jonathan, after Nigel's father and the other they named Randall, after Sydney's. Her father, along with Jenny, continued to give them support with the three children, who were all extremely happy, healthy and relatively well behaved.
Preston stayed in England and eventually married Cate who'd, quite early on, found she loved the English way of life and Interpol had soon become a distant memory. Although they didn't have any children together, Cate loved Nigella and enjoyed playing spy games with her and generally being in her company, as she was so intelligent and really quite delightful.
By the time Nigella was five, Preston began to finally trust himself to be alone with his daughter and they got along wonderfully. He was far more relaxed around Nigella than he'd ever been with Nigel, when he was a child, and eventually, when his daughter was invited to go to Oxford University, at the age of 15, she moved in with him and Cate.
Once Nigella moved to England to study, Sydney, who knew all about Nigel's life at Oxford University, insisted she lived with her father and not with strangers; like Nigel was forced to do when he went there at the same age. Lucky for Nigel, he grew to love the Ballys' who looked after him, but Sydney was taking no chances with Nigella.
Of course, during the holidays they all moved back to the London house, which Louisa had continued to look after until her sad death in 2022. After that they just hired someone to go in and make the house presentable, each time they returned. Sydney, Nigel and the twins visited as often as possible while Nigella was studying as they, obviously, missed her very much; although once Louisa had passed on Nigel found visiting the house quite a sad experience and it was a few years before he could go into Louisa's old bedroom.
As the years went on Nigel became a professor, something he'd always wanted; but not only that, he became a famous relic hunter, in his own right, too. This occurred because Sydney, unfortunately, had to forego a lot of hunts when she developed arthritis; probably caused by the constant pounding she gave her body when she fought off rival relic hunters over the years. After that point she went to great lengths to persuade Nigel to continue, which he reluctantly did, having realised just how much that meant to her.
To ensure that Nigel was not completely alone on those hunts, Sydney employed a martial arts expert, Bruce Penfold, who knew enough about ancient history to be of assistance to Nigel, although he'd never been relic hunting before. The most important thing was that he was able to protect Nigel on the occasions it was needed and carry his laptop and other items which previously Nigel had to carry.
Nigel was very fortunate with the information he received regarding various lost relics, especially when he got word from the Vatican that they wanted him to try locate a three foot high solid gold crucifix that they believed existed, but had never been able to find. The clues they provided needed to be looked at with a relic hunter's eyes, which was completely different to the way they'd looked at them. Nigel, with his years of experience, was soon able to interpret the clues correctly and found the cross, which was eventually placed in the Vatican Museum, along with several gold plaques and three candle holders that he'd found at the same time.
Nigel was not prepared for the fame that followed that discovery, although he still handled the worldwide television exposure very well, with a little help from Sydney.
Because of his amazing finds and because he'd been seen so much on television, he was approached by several publishing houses who wanted him to write his autobiography. Even though one publisher offered him four million dollars, Nigel wasn't keen to be an author of a book, although he'd written many papers that had been published. Eventually, at the age of 50; although in truth he was only 47, he gave in to the pressure and wrote his life story. Once published, his book entitled 'Nigel from the Beginning' became a number one best seller, although it upset Nigella, Jonathan and Randall somewhat, as they were horrified by what he'd gone through during his early life, although Nigel was very careful not to make Preston the villain!
Nigel stayed at Trinity College and worked alongside Sydney, until she retired at the age of 61. After that he stayed on and his students adored him, as he'd become such a wonderful teacher who, even in his early fifties, was still very handsome and youthful, which ensured his classes were always full, particularly with females! Obviously, he was never able to explain that he was, in fact, three years younger than everyone, except Sydney, thought!
Once Sydney had given up teaching she felt the need to do something creative and, with the help of Nigel, began to write fictional adventure stories for teenagers. She called her books 'Relic Hunter', giving each one a secondary title that described a little about the story; much like the Harry Potter books had many years before. Sydney, obviously, based her main characters on herself and Nigel, using numerous situations they'd found themselves in over the years to make the stories exciting for boys and girls alike.
Sydney and Nigel's twin boys, who were identical and the image of Nigel, were just as intelligent as their father yet, despite that, they were permitted to take part in a variety of sporting activities and attend acting, singing and painting classes; all of which they loved and were exceptionally good at. Both of their parents, but especially Nigel, wanted them to enjoy their childhood and spend as much time as possible having fun with their many friends; although they insisted they study hard too. Nigel, obviously, felt this way because he'd so often sacrificed his artistic side when he was at school; as he'd so many other classes to attend.
By the time they were 19 they'd already been at Yale University for a couple of years and between them had obtained degrees in science, mathematics, physics and computer science. Naturally they went on to gain further degrees, including various master degrees in a variety of subjects. Sydney and Nigel were delighted by the way their sons turned out and by the fact that they'd always been such happy boys; quite unlike Nigel had been as a teenager!
Nigella left university at the age of 22 having gained many degrees in the areas of science and engineering, and several master degrees in similar subjects, along with physics, computing and environmental studies.
By the time Nigella was 26 she was considered one of the brightest young minds in the world and had started working for Nasa Space Centre. The twins, who'd been highly influenced by their sister, began working alongside her and, in fact, they helped her design a propulsion system, which would enable a space ship to travel many times faster than the speed of light! She also designed a prototype space ship that used that propulsion system, although that was, unfortunately, not built in her lifetime.
Nigella, along with Jonathan and Randall, achieved everything the crew of the Enterprise needed for their futures to be secure and Sydney, Nigel and Preston were so proud of them, especially when Nigella was given a Technological Innovation award. Nigella, being the wonderful caring young lady that she was, acknowledged, when giving her acceptance speech, the assistance of her brothers and everyone else who'd helped her, including her mother, father, Cate and, of course, her uncle Nigel.
Jonathan and Randall received awards of a similar nature too and also recognised the encouragement and assistance they received from their sister, parents and uncle Preston.
Unfortunately Nigella died at quite a young age when she was in a car crash, the day after she'd received her third Technological Innovation Award. Had Sydney and Nigel been looking backwards, instead of at the stage, when the award presentation took place, they'd have seen William Ryker standing there, looking quite unhappy, as he knew what was about to occur. However, he was unable to prevent that tragedy, as it occurred in the correct timeline, and stopping the accident would have caused the timeline to go off track once again!
The loss of Nigella was extremely hard to bear for the entire Bailey family; however, her name, and later on, the names of Jonathan and Randall, went down in history as the three people who made the first steps in warp speed technology, something that would eventually be used on all Starships in the future.
It was seven years after Nigella's untimely death that a memorial was placed near the spot where she was killed. Sydney, Nigel, the twins, Cate and of course, her father Preston, were there at the unveiling, as was Jenny; Randal senior having passed on just four years before. However, as they sat their gazing at the beautiful statue of Nigella, Sydney and Nigel held each other close and smiled, realising that what Captain Jean Luc Picard had revealed to them, all those years ago, had proved to be correct, as Nigella Bailey really had become 'a very important young lady'.
(I do realise that in some Star Trek episodes they mention other people being the first ones to make advances in warp technology, however, for the purposes of this story, my characters did – so there!)
I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS STORY, IF YOU DID; PLEASE REVIEW. I CAN ASSURE YOU THAT I WILL ALWAYS APPRECIATE A KIND REVIEW, EVEN IF IT'S BEEN YEARS SINCE I PUT THIS STORY HERE. I ALLOW REVIEWS FROM PEOPLE NOT REGISTERED WITH FANFICTION.
I wish to thank Abducted By Eon Of Chronia; cellyLS; Samantha Kyle; ivoryrose75; Steph1992; Space-Case7029 and Debasmita Sinha for your lovely and sometime extremely comical reviews. I really appreciate your kindness and the encouragement you gave me when I felt so disheartened about this story.