I know I said I would finish the story before classes started. I thought I would but I got a job as an intern in my field and I'm on my last semester of college. I know it's not fair to you guys to make you wait so long between updates and I do apologize. I really do appreciate you reading my story.
Since updates are so far between I forget details in my story. Like how I switch from James and Lario. Or Doris's hair color, I can't remember. I would appreciate it if anyone that can beta for me. I am now writing this for you guys, I know how it is to read a great story and have it hanging and not knowing what the resolution was. (It happened a lot with my favorite Phantom of the Opera fics)
Amanda didn't think she'd make it. She really thought that he would leave by the time she would make it to the hangar. Luckily, James knew shortcuts throughout the Academy and she made it through to the hangar in no time.
She felt small, insignificant with the large ships around her. The further she went into the hangar, she could see a small group of people gathered around a specific ship. Unlike everywhere else where it was all adults and cadets dressed to the nine's in their uniform, she could see Vulcans in their normal attire and a small Vulcan child.
He was getting into the ship, followed by a female Vulcan.
Amanda ran forward. "Sybok!"
He turned and looked towards her, she thought she saw a small smile. He stepped away from the ship, "Miss Grayson."
Amanda shoved her hand into her bag. "I wanted to give you something before you go."
She looked towards the Vulcan group. They seemed alarmed but not as alarmed as Sarek. He seemed rooted where he stood and she could have sworn that she saw a quirk of a smile.
What did that mean?
By the time she reached the shuttle, everyone was staring daggers at her. She didn't care. She focused on Sybok.
He seemed to be genuinely happy to see her. Though, of course, he didn't show it like human children did, but she could see it in small ways.
"Miss Grayson," he gently bowed his head. "May I ask what you are doing here?"
"To see you off, of course," she said beaming. "And to give you your last assignment." She pulled out a coloring book from her bag with a pen and a box of crayons.
She knelt down in front of him and used the pen she had in her hand to write down her name and information on the coloring book. "I want you to use it as much as you want and if you do finish a page, send it to me, right here." She pointed to what she just wrote down. "Here is how you can stay in touch with me. I would love to hear from you."
He took the coloring book. "I thank you for your kindness and patience with me. Regrettably, I must leave."
"I know, I'm keeping you. I just wanted to say good-bye." She stood up, keeping her hand firmly at her side not wanting to give in to what she would traditionally do in this situation. She stepped back and joined the crowd. "Good-bye, Sybok."
Then he did the last thing she expected him to do. He walked right up to her and gave her his hand. "You have taught me, Miss Grayson, that the proper protocol for this situation would be to shake hands."
She chuckled to herself. She could hardly believe it. Had she made an impression on the small boy? "You are correct, Sybok." She gave him her hand and shook it slowly. "It was nice to have met you, Sybok."
And after that, he left, and no sooner did he take off into the sky, Sarek spoke.
"A private word with you, Miss Grayson."
Amanda froze. She was sure that he had meant it to be a question but it came out as a statement. A venomous statement.
She held her breath as she followed him to another part of the hangar. They were away from the group and when he spoke, she knew he didn't want them to hear.
"Miss Grayson, I hope you have not told anyone about what happened last night."
Amanda felt hurt, taken aback. "Of course not, Ambassador. I would never-"
He cut her off. "I would hate to think that I misjudged you."
Amanda felt like she had been punched in the stomach. Despite everything that she had felt about him before, she felt sorry for him. Ever since the night before she felt sorry for him, felt for him. She didn't know about rejection, but she could only imagine what it felt.
And ever since it happened she saw him differently, noticed a change. She thought it was her, nothing that anyone else would notice.
Of course he still stood pin straight, talked like he always did.
Amanda swallowed. "You didn't." Her voice shook. Had she hurt him that bad? "I wouldn't do that, Ambassador. I couldn't."
He gave her a hard look. "Good."
Just as she was about to speak again, he interrupted.
"Good day, Miss Grayson."
With nothing else, he left.
Amanda felt woozy. She never meant to hurt him and she hated herself for doing it. He caught her by surprise in every way. She wasn't ready for marriage and she didn't love him to that point. She had to turn him down. Why did he make her feel so guilty?
She turned to the cadet.
"Do you want me to- Are you all right?"
Amanda cleared her throat. "Yeah, why?"
"You look pale."
Amanda reached for her throat. "I'm just a little tired, that's all."
James looked concerned. "Let me take you home."
Three days after her family left, Amanda was ready to go home.
She had never been so homesick, even with Doris calling her each night. She thought she could stay longer in Starfleet but with what happened before the launch, she always felt sick to her stomach.
She missed the country air.
She couldn't even look forward to the dinner with James the next day.
With not much to do, Amanda spent most of the time wandering around Starfleet taking in the sights as much as she could, knowing she wouldn't return again. She'd miss the hustle and bustle of the cadets in training.
It was while she was on the grounds that she received an unexpected call from her sister.
She was reading in one of the gardens on her tablet, waiting for James like she had been doing for the last two days. The weather was cool enough to allow her to sit outside.
The tablet rang in her hands and she put her headphones on so no one could hear their entire conversation.
The bubbly blond was smiling when Amanda answered the call. The camera of Doris's own tablet picking up the details of the room she was in.
The gray room was brightly lit. She could see the small room had a small amount of decoration, nothing like home. In the back, behind Doris was a window. Amanda couldn't see anything outside it.
Of course, space was dark.
"Hello, little sister. "
"Hey, Doris." Amanda greeted.
These two camera calls were Amanda's favorite part of the day. Doris looked concerned. "You don't look good."
Amanda nodded. "I miss home. I think I'll go home earlier than I thought."
Doris seemed let down. "I thought that you would have fun there. Come on, it's only two more days!"
"I am having fun," Amanda reassured.
"It's that damn Vulcan's fault, isn't it?"
Amanda paled. "What?"
Doris seemed pleased. "You've been like this since the night before we left. What happened?"
"Yeah, right," Doris pushed. "Tell me."
"There's nothing to tell."
Doris sighed exasperated. "Oh, please."
Amanda sighed as well. Well, at least she tried. "Fine." She took a deep breath. "Before you left-"
"Wait." Doris stood from her chair. "There's a lot of noise outside." She walked to her door, pressed her ear against it. She jumped back instantly, like a cat in a tub of water. She held a hand to her chest. "Someone's shooting phasers."
Amanda watched confused. "What?"
Doris gasped and jumped back again far away from the door. "Oh, my God, there's screaming."
"Doris," Amanda panicked. "Hide somewhere, right now."
No sooner had she said it, the door burst open.
Two large green scaled –what looked like men- barged inside, knocking tables down as they went. Doris screamed like Amanda had never heard.
Her skin began to crawl.
One of the men pushed her to the floor while the other grabbed a handful of her hair and dragged her out of the room.
The first man looked at Doris's tablet.
He pointed the phaser at Amanda.
The screen went black and the word "Connection Lost" was displayed.
Amanda's hands were shaking, she could feel her heart in her throat.
What just happened?
She tried the call again. The computer chirped, "Doris is not available."
She tried again, this time with her father.
"William is not available."
She tried her mom.
That never happened, their tablets were always available off planet in case of emergencies.
They were in trouble, she knew it.
But what could she do?
And in that moment, she knew. She knew who to turn to.
Not a moment later, James found her. "Hello, Miss Gray-"
"Where is Sarek?"
James kneeled down next to her. "Amanda, what happened, are you okay?"
"Where is the Ambassador?" her voice was hoarse.
"Amanda." James reached for her hand. She didn't notice she had dug her hands in the dirt below. He picked it up and clumps of grass fell from her fingers. "And you're crying, what happened?"
Amanda touched her cheeks. He was right.
That didn't matter.
"James," Amanda said slightly calmer. "Where is he?"
James blinked. "In the West Hall, I believe."
Amanda jumped up and ran. Her hands pumped beside her, her tablet gripped tight in one of them.
"Amanda!" James called behind her but she continued.
"He's in a meeting! Amanda!"
Amanda knew where she was going. She had seen it before.
So what if he was in a meeting? Her family needed her.
She ran faster still, her love for her family giving her speed.
The entire ship had to be under attack, there was no other explanation. Her family couldn't be the only targets.
She found the room and with the last of her energy, she pulled the doors open.
"There's been an attack on the Concord."
As always, please let me know what you think! Take care!