Disclaimer: the author does
not claim ownership to the characters or plot development mentioned from
"Enterprise" or any "Star Trek" entity. These properties expressly belong
to the Paramount Corporation, the UPN Network, etc. Any other characters
contained in the original story are the author's.
Author's note: Excited from
the 30-second trailer, I wrote a quick draft and did the barest minimum
of research to avoid being spoiled for the new Star Trek franchise, "Enterprise".
Welcome back to T.V., Scott Bakula. e.c. 01 aug '00
by Evan Como
If he closed his eyes long
enough he could almost imagine being stationary, standing at the top of
the recently rebuilt Eiffel Tower, his hands high above his head and grasping
at atmosphere. He could do that, you know; project himself elsewhere. It
had been his ambition since childhood - exploring wonder in all of its
A smile warped across Captain
Jonathan Archer's slim face, distancing him a decade from his actual age.
Unruly waves of sandy hair and clear hazel eyes and his tall athletic build
gave off a youthful impression anyway. And he'd been called 'wiry' more
than once in his career; but he'd always taken that as a compliment for
being able to command his way out of trouble.
He blinked once and met eyes
with the Vulcan officer. "T'Pol," he stated flatly, mimicking her humorless
Vulcan inflection. He'd been unable to repress the amusement in his voice
so he forced himself to appear stern. Although, even after the three months,
his First Officer's imperturbable features had yet to reveal her approval
or disapproval of his reactions.
T'Pol drew a lengthy breath
and presented the Data Padd. "The anomalies in this sector have been charted,
Captain Archer. Shall we move on to the next?"
The Captain of the Enterprise
took the electronic device and scrolled through the binary information.
One glance up to the view screen at the front of the bridge put all the
numbers into perspective: one galaxy, six planets, forty-thousand stars,
billions of living beings.
With her wrists criss-crossed
at the base of her spine, T'Pol remained at her version of 'at ease' until
Archer nodded a dismissal. He rose with his sight fixed ahead and, behind
his navigator, instructed, "Mr. Mayweather, full impulse to Sector Twenty
"Captain's log --"
Archer inhaled above a cup
of chicken soup. He took a sip and winced. At some point in time, the flavor
would have to become less wretched as it became more familiar. He swallowed
grimly. No amount of expended imagination could think the rank aftertaste
"The replicators are functioning,
but to what degree..." He shook his head and reared in his chair with his
feet up on the narrow desk. The small room, with its meager furnishings
was, at least, wide enough to recline in a bit. He thought back to a tour
he'd taken of an old Earth atomic ocean vessel, how spacious the Officer's
quarters had been. Even on the Enterprise, an Admiral would have to suffer
through a night's rest in stressful confinement. The technology hadn't
been invented yet that allowed the crew to be as comfortable as the mechanicals
of the ship.
Too bad the warp core couldn't
multitask -- chart the stars *and* propel at the same time.
"Personal log. Captain Jonathan
"This detail should bore
me - mapping the Calph-Hedron galaxy. But it's not."
Interlacing eight fingers
behind his neck, Archer opened his chest to the ceiling, stretching his
pectorals. He reached back before hugging his shoulders, before balling
his fists to tuck into his elbows. A spontaneous laugh was deep; it was
"I'm the guy. I still can't
believe that I'm *the* guy - the first Captain of the first extended-expedition
vessel. This isn't some rinky-dink scull running interplanetary relay junkets;
it's the genuine article. And I'm at the helm."
He picked up his soup and
watched his reflected happiness melt into dismay. If the rations on a mining
frigate were edible, shouldn't they be even better on the flagship?
"And I'm scared," he continued,
setting the soup beside the computer console and pushing it aside. "My
First Officer, T'Pol, isn't making this any easier, of course. That's not
why a Vulcan is born - to make the world an easier place to live in. And
maybe we'll never be friends, but we're allies. And we're co-officers..."
He looked to the wall, brows
crossed in confusion.
The blip sounded again.
"Yes?" he asked, wary.
"Captain Archer. Starfleet
communications have scheduled repair down-time over the course of the next
fifteen hours. If you have anything you need to transmit - "
"No. Nothing, Sato," he replied.
"You've forwarded this morning's logs and fuel consumption reports?"
"Yes sir." Communications
officer, Ensign Hoshi Sato's voice was decidedly feminine, decidedly efficient.
"Our supplies will be waiting for us at Starbase Three-Three where the
Columbia will be waiting. Starfleet Operations has determined our time
of arrival to be in five days."
Archer let the implied directive
sink in: get a move on. "Thank you." He held his breath, lifted an ear
towards the speaker.
"You're welcome, Captain."
The accompanying click was as faint as her "Goodnight".
Flatfooted and leaning forward
with his forearms hinged on his thighs, Archer yawned. By rotating his
chair he was able to arch back onto his bunk.
"Close Captain's log," he
said. A blip complied.
"Lights." Another blip. Most
of the lights flickered off.
Jonathan Archer closed his
eyes. Concentrating, he visualized himself on a massive vessel, hurtling
through the cosmos. The tight crew under his command would be courageous,
visionary, and full of faith in the humanity of all mankind.
Even if they weren't human.
Even if they weren't men.
Hands clasped under his pillow
and his legs bent just enough to keep his heels on the mattress, Archer
peered through the tiny porthole. The bed was just as uncomfortable as
it had been every time he'd spread out on it. One day it would become familiar,
one day he'd have to be able to sleep.
But until that occasion,
he'd just have that much more time to dream.