Lessons Learned
by Shaule Sachs
Part 3

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[Local Hotel, Seacouver
10:00 am, September 13, 1996]

"What do we have?" Richie asked himself and his companions.
"Three tricorders, three phasers, three..." Data began.
"Sorry, Data, I meant 'What do we have'... in the form of
information and changes to the Timeline," Richie corrected.
"You saw Methos here, when he should be in Paris," Jo Ann said.
"There is an anomaly in the Timestream that started at some point
in this time frame," Data added.
"Which Ray caused somehow," Richie said. "I'm still not sure how
he got back here in the first place."
"Could he have used..." Data began.
"No! It's one of the biggest secrets that the Federation has,"
Richie said. "Only a handful of StarFleet officers and scientists know
about it."
"Could we use..." Jo Ann tried.
"Yes, we did. How do you think we got here," Richie asked.
"Oh," Jo Ann said.
"Any other anomalies exist?" Data asked.
"Yes, John Smith had an 'accident' yesterday," Richie said.
"So?" Jo Ann asked.
"And here I thought you knew my Chronicle by heart," Richie
joked. Seriously, he said, "John Smith won the fifth race in the
Original Timeline. Yesterday was the fourth. In the fifth race, Smith
cut me off, which sent me into a dive, although I'd completely healed
in a day, I stayed out of the races for a week that it would have take
for a 'normal' person to heal enough to continue to race. I spent the
next week racing and the third week checking L.A. out. So, it's a
change to the Timeline. Besides the 'accident' is questionable if
someone had a disrupter and targeted Smith's back tire."
"So you think that Mister Mountana engineered the 'accident?'"
Data asked.
"No. Doesn't make sense. If anything, Ray would want me here,"
Richie answered after thinking for a moment. "I don't think I'm a
possible target here."
"Then who?" Jo Ann asked.
"Back to Methos or Jean-Claude, I guess. Although, now, Duncan
and Joe are back from Toronto, so we have to add them to the list of
possible targets," Richie said.
"Have there been any anomalies with the Immortals, outside of
Methos being here," Jo Ann asked.
Richie looked at Data, Data looked at Richie, who shrugged, and
Data said, "Unknown."
"But I know where we can find out," Richie said.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

[Joe's Bar
3:00 pm, September 13, 1996]

"Miss me?" Joe asked with a smile.
"Yes! You figure out the books," Mike said from behind the bar.
Joe walked behind the bar, looked at the books, and said, "How's
business?"
"The Bar's been doing a little less than average," Mike said. In
a low voice and after a quick scan of the room, which had only one
occupant, said, "With MacLeod gone, Immortal activities have been low
for the first three days. It picked up with Jean-Claude's arrival on
the Eighth. I put his Chronicle on your desk in the office, under
some of the bills. We haven't figured out why Jean-Claude came here
from Seattle but Tom doesn't think it as anything to do with MacLeod.
Also, there have been two uncounted for Quickening in the surrounding
area. We can't find the bodies of the two losers. Nor do we have any
clue as to who the victors were. Other than that, not much happened
while you were gone."
"Thanks, Mike," Joe said. He picked up the books and headed to
his office. He leaned against the doorpost and asked, "Anything else?"
Mike thought a moment and said, "The new kid, Xing, thought he
saw Richie Ryan, downtown, even though Thomson positively located Ryan
in Los Angles. Xing's description of Ryan was good, except he said Ryan
had gray temples."
"And Immortals don't age, so ..." Joe said.
"Yeah, except Xing swears he never saw Ryan before," Mike
answered. "And, aside from the gray temples, his description was
accurate."
"Oh? But where do people get gray temples except aging, which
Immortals don't do," Joe replied back.
Mike just shrugged and gave Joe a look that said 'You're the
boss. It's your problem.'

It was after five before the crowds started coming to Joe's. Most
had come to see the band that would be playing at six but not all had
come to see the band. Some, like Charles and Mary, were waiting for
Tom, who was Watching Jean-Claude, who was downtown. Once Tom returned
with Xing, they would join Charles and Mary, and talk some shop under
the music until the band and the crowd left. At which point, the four
would be joined by either Mike or Joe, with the other manning the bar,
for a card game and more shop-talk when the bar was empty.
The band had been playing for over forty-five minutes when a
woman entered the bar. Joe noticed her since he was manning the bar
and happened to be looking up at the moment. The Watcher in him noted
that she was five and a half feet tall, about normal weight, and had
blonde hair with blue eyes. Joe thought she looked familiar but he
couldn't place the face. Joe simply shrugged and thought, // If she's
important, I'll remember. //
Jo Ann did a quick look around to familiarize herself to the place.
// Rick was right, // she thought. Regardless of what Rick had said, she
will always think of him of Rick or Professor Ryan, not as Richie, not
Richard, and definitely not rI'Da, son of Kahless.
Although there were obvious differences, Jo Ann went like she just
walked into Joe's Grill that served as an off-Academy grounds
'hide-away' for the Faculty of Starfleet Academy. Of course, it was
Professor Ryan that started the tradition when the Academy first opened
and the other faculty members needed a place to get away from the cadets.
It would take an hour and a half to reach Joe's Grill by hovercar but
the invention of the transporter makes it possible to travel the same
difference in mere seconds.
Jo Ann was unsure how to proceed. Through observation, Jo Ann
noticed that any customers that approached the door to the office was
intercepted by Joe at the bar. The question was how was she, a Watcher
not listed in the current time's database, would get access to the computer
in the office. The answer came from an unexpected source. The man with
white hair seemed familiar to Jo Ann but she could not place him. Not
that it mattered since he had engaged Joe in a conversation that kept him
from seeing Jo Ann enter the office.
Once inside, Jo Ann used her tricorder to record the magnetic
fields inside the computer's hard drive thus copying all the data inside
in a matter of seconds. Not bothering to check the information, Jo Ann
hid the tricorder and stepped out of the office. Seeing that the white
haired man was wrapping up the conversation and that she was still close
to she office, Jo Ann decided to throw suspicion off of her by ordering
a drink. Unfortunately, Jo Ann was used to synthol not actual alcohol,
so the simple beer hit her harder than a harmless synthol would.
Jo Ann could only nod her head when the white haired man offered
to help her home. As they approached the hotel that She and the
Commodore had set up as 'field headsquarters' the feeling that she knew him
grew. However her puzzlement also grew as she realized that she had not
told the stranger her name or where she was staying, yet, the stranger
called her by her full name, 'Josephine Anna,' and seems to understand
her unfamiliarity with alcohol.

"What happened to you?" Richie asked upon seeing Jo Ann.
"I had a 'beer,'" she replied. "I wanted to try one."
Richie simply shook his head, handed the tricorder to Data, and
told Jo Ann, "Why don't you go take a shower. It'll help. A little."
Jo Ann nodded her head and went to the bathroom.
Data had begun to examine the copied data but stopped when Richie
asked, "How long until you can spot the anomalies?"
"Unknown," Data replied. "As you know, Terran historical records
before twenty-one twelve are limited and highly suspicious and the
Watcher's records before that are scarce. However, I will compare these
records to the one in my memory banks."
Richie nodded, suspecting as much, so he said, "Still, it's worth a
shot." After thinking for a moment he added, "You can limit your search
by ignoring anything dated before a month ago. A month is the maximum
date that Ray could have arrived here."
"Aye Sir," Data responded.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

[Joe's Bar
9:50 pm, September 13, 1996]

"Well," Joe began. "Who wants to deal?"
"I'll deal," Adam Pierson said. Joe handed him the cards.
After playing a few hands Zaxxon asked John, "So, who's your first
assignment going to be?"
"I don't know," John Xing replied.
At seeing Zaxxon's face Charles Smith answered, "It was going to be
'Terra Woring,' but she's dead."
"What?" Adam said.
"Happened this morning," Joe answered. "Some unidentifiable Immortal
killed her while she was on her way to work."
"Funny thing is," Charles added. "There wasn't the usual
Quickening. We know that our mysterious /friend/ is an Immortal because
when he left, Don could tell that all of his wounds were healed. Yet
there was no visible Quickening."
"Understandable," Zaxxon asked. "I mean... Terra is ... was a
*young* Immortal. Only took a *single* head in her seventy-five years.
Was a nurse during the World War Two when she had her first 'death.'
Been a nurse, later a doctor, ever a /fighter./"
"Easy kill," Adam replied. "Still.... How come we can't identify
the Immortal? I thought all the Immortals were in the Chronicles."
Charles, Mary, and Zaxxon snorted. Charles said, "If you believe
that, Adam, you are sadly mistaken."
"Only about eighty percent of the currently alive Immortals are
known to us," Mary said. "Immortals that existed before the turn of
the millennium or have stayed out of the Game, are only known as
'mentioned' from what we know of the known Immortals."
"That and the legends we overhear," Charles said.
"Any way," Zaxxon said. "Deal, kid."

[=== End of Part 3 ===]