The conference room was filled to capacity; elegant, silver chairs lined the circular table. It was star date 4456.2 and the Enterprise crew were getting ready to meet their newest recruit. He was a lieutenant commander and had been decorated five times for his unprecedented bravery. He had been recently reassigned to the USS Enterprise because it was the best ship in the fleet.
"You have all been called here to welcome the newest addition to our crew, T'Car. He is a Vulcan and the second to decline the offer of a place at the prestigious Vulcan Science Academy, after our first officer, Spock." James Tiberius kirk's authoritative and welcoming mood lit up the room as he entered and took his place at the centre of the table. Spock's five showed slight factors of what humans would describe as jealousy, but also pride that he has inspired T'Car to join mankind and numerous other species in exploring the stars and beyond.
To Kirk's right were science officer Spock, chief engineer Scotty, and helmsman Sulu. On his other side were his closest friend doctor McCoy, communications officer Uhura and, of course, T'Car.
"It is indeed an honour to have you serving with us, T'Car." kirk continued.
"My thanks for your pleasantries, Captain." T'Car spoke with a clear assertiveness in his tone and that unmistakeable Vulcan logic.
Ensign chekov yawned and slowly wandered down the hallway. He was sauntering around like a drunken elephant and soon his tiredness got the better of him. He suddenly felt an awful tingling sensation in his forehead; he'd walked into a wall. He regained consciousness after no less than 3 or 4 seconds, but not of his own accord, a slither of bright blueish/white, seeping out from under a door in deck 14 room 3a; T'Car's personal quarters. The ensign was more asleep than awake, but he did know what he heard. Because he had walked into the wall that separates T'Car's quarters and the hallway, his ears were in very close proximity to the wall. He knew what he heard. "Yes Ki'Tak, it shall be done."
He recognised that voice when he has bumped into T'Car earlier that morning. Chekov was only 22 but he felt like he was getting old; he'd walked into two things in one day. Ensign chekov may not have always been given credit, but he did know that Ki'Tak was a Romulan. And a Romulan was not someone you'd want to be near, let alone have as a senior officer on a galaxy class starship.
But that was not all, there was more being said, "THE BRANDY?" The voice on the other side of the conversation demanded. His voice sounded wobbly and crackly, which chekov knew where characteristic of a Romulan communicator.
"Chekov?" A concerned doctor McCoy asked the young ensign.
After a few more times of the doctor asking, Chekov realised he was awake and answered. "Yes, doctor. Vat is it you want?"
"No, it's not what I want. What you want is a hell of a lot rest."
"Vy? Vat is wrong vit me?" Chekov was growing concerned.
"Nothing serious, don't worry. It's just simple fatigue. I don't know what you've been doing but you're very tired."
"Yes, thank you doctor. I should like to get some rest now." Chekov turned in his side in the sickbay bed and closed his eyes. It had been a long day. A very long day.
"I am formally inviting all of the crew to celebrate my joining to this impressive vessel and its equally as impressive staff." For some reason, T'Car's 'invitation' didn't seem very Vulcan, it was closer to human. This message was sent to everyone one of the enterprise's 451-strong crew. Not many experienced officers who had been to reassigned to the enterprise had given it that much thought, and those who did 'celebrate' it, only invited the most senior of staff. But T'Car was inviting yeomen, sub-lieutenants and ensigns. Odd.
The celebration that T'Car had called for was very full; not only were the 400 crew members present, but their families and close friends had joined too.
T'Car himself was nowhere to be seen but no one really took that much notice, apart from chekov, that is.
It was very hot and temperatures were way over 26C. Many of the guests were wearing only minimal garments.
"How the hell are you not hot?" A disgruntled and fed up Kirk asked Spock.
Spock was wearing his usual Starfleet uniform; blue and black. He ignored the captain.
"Can you not feel heat or something?"
"Not exactly captain. I grew up on Vulcan. Because of my planet's close proximity to its sun, the temperature there was usually very high."
"So you've just adjusted to the temperature?" Kirk was both fascinated and annoyed.
"In a way, yes. However, I can also choose to filter out the weather conditions and choose to ignore them if I have no need for them."
"Ugh". Kirk moaned and tugged at his collar before wiping the swear off his forehead. "You're still as pale as a white dwarf". He still had some punch left.
Spock didn't respect or understand his captain's last comment, "Captain?"
"Who wants a drink?" A voice belonging to T'Car yelled over the comm. His proposal was received with hundreds of screams and exhausted sighs.
Glamorous waitresses walked down the aisles between the ornate tables and chairs that many guests were sat by. They handed out a dark coloured, fizzy liquid. Vulcan brandy.
To Kirk's surprise, Spock was ticking into the food and even the Vulcan brandy.
"Hey, I though vulcans didn't approve of drink?" He asked, puzzled.
" We don't, but Vulcan brandy is non alcoholic and is both refreshing and healthy." Spock confirmed.
"Ah, so different to most drinks."
Soon, the brandy had stated to take effect. But they weren't drunk, they were just, asleep. Everyone, every man, woman and child had their heads rested seemingly peacefully on their arms. Everyone expect chekov, who had declined the waitress's offer of brandy. He was approached again, this time by a different waitress. She had insists he drunk something due to the intense heat and he had accepted. But as soon as he was sure no one was looking, he turned around and poured his brandy into a neighbouring plant as discreetly as possible. He looked around him, not a single person was still awake.
He panicked for a brief moment but then he discovered that there were crew on the bridge and in the transporting and engineering rooms, as well as in sickbay, keeping the ship's vital functions going. He needn't worry. He tried to reassure himself. He stepped into the lift and once the doors reopened sprinted to sickbay, it was empty. He called the names of all the medical staff he knew, "Doctor McCoy?, nurse Chapel?" No answer. Doctor McCoy was at the celebration, but nurse Chapel wasn't and should have been here, in sickbay.
He ran faster than he'd ever ran before and eventually reached engineering, again, it was empty. Montgomery Scott had been invited to the celebration, but had declined the offer, saying that the ship's dilithium crystals needed looking at. Chekov called his name, but heard nothing. He wandered into the room and saw an arm peeking out from behind the controls. It had had a red shirt and two gold stripes, definitely Scotty. Sure enough, chekov followed the arm round and saw the Scotsman's usual red, cheerful face. He shook him and shouted his name some more, but the chief engineer was out cold. His breath smelled of Vulcan brandy, but with a touch of something else; the brandy had been spiked, but by who? Chekov racked his brains, then thought back to the day before - T'Car! The brandy must have been made available to everyone, everywhere on the ship.
Chekov put his head to Scotty's chest and felt a heartbeat, he was going to be fine, thank god. Chekov stood up and state out for a brief moment, then hurried back the bridge.
After a few moments, he was there. But he did not like what he saw. Lieutenant Macintosh was slumped over the communications deck, lieutenant jones was resting on the controls of the command chair and far to other side, helmsmen Novak and stiles were asleep at the helm. Chekov was terrified beyond measure by now. He let out a whimper and prayed briefly in Russian. He slapped himself across the face And remembered the wise words Captain Kirk had given him on his first day of duty aboard the Enterprise.
He returned to engineering and to his relief found commander Spock leaning over scotty, checking his pulse. Chekov let out a sigh of relief and the startled Vulcan turned around. "Ensign, what are you doing?"
"I...I..." He didn't know what to say. "I came back from the celebration and everyone vas like this, it vasn't my fault."
"I am not blaming you, ensign, I am merely curious as to how this may have occurred." Spock spoke as friendly as he could, but his tone was basically neutral.
"Vat do you think caused this, commander?" Chekov asked.
"I do not know what, but I believe the person behind this is T'Car."
"That is vat I thought, and maybe the brandy was spiked." The young ensign echoed his thoughts. "I saw you drinking some, how come you're not affected?" Chekov was confused.
"The substance that T'Car put in the brandy had no affect on my blood system, as Vulcan physiology, although similar to humans, is also very different."
"That makes sense." Chekov recognised.
"Now we need to find a way to fix this ship!"
"I'll stay here and do what I can in engineering, you will go to the bridge and set the enterprise on autopilot. That should get us safely to the closest star base."
"Yes, sir". Chekov hurried to the bridge, as ordered. Spock could be annoying, but he was also brilliant.
The flashing lights and alarms that were previously taking over the bridge had died down and spock had returned.
"The enterprise will be fine," Spock told Chekov.
"Yes, but vat about the crew?"
"The sedative in the brandy was only mild and they should be coming round in around 23 point 78 minutes."
Chekov didn't say anything, but let go a massive sigh of relief. I was going to be alright.
The following day, the crew had fully recovered and everyone was getting on with their usual duties.
"Ensign chekov, for your outstanding initiative, I am promoting you to the position of sub-lieutenant." Captain James Kirk smiled at the young ensign.
"Really, it was not down to me." Chekov insisted.
"Commander Spock told me of yesterday's remarkable events and recommended you for promotion immediately." Kirk replied.
"Yes, but..." Chekov had always been modest.
"I'll hear none of it, dismissed, ensign," he paused dramatically, then added, "I mean, sub-lieutenant."
"Wait," Chekov said, before changing his request slightly, "can I have a moment?"
"Yes." Kirk replied.
"What happened to T'Car?"
"He was a Romulan, his court martial is a definite win to us and will start tomorrow. He will be trailed on Romulus." Kirk said.
Chekov thanked the captain once more and left, accordingly.
"How exactly was our imposter capture?" Kirk asked his second in command.
"Since he was not a Vulcan, I was able to use the Vulcan nerve grip on him as he was attempting to steal one of our shuttle craft and pilot it back to his home planet." Spock said to the captain.
"I have to say, it was very noble of you to recommend ensign Chekov and recognise him."
"Thank you, captain."
"You can be pretty nifty with that death grip," Kirk replied, with a smirk.