I don't own Relic Hunter or Star Trek the Next Generation; or any of the characters from these shows. I am making no money from this story, it is purely for fun, so please don't sue me!
This story is not just based on the characters from the "Relic Hunter" TV show, but also on my interpretation of the characters outlined in my other fanfic "Nigel from the Beginning". In that story Nigel was brought up by his older brother, Preston, following the death of their parents; when Nigel was 12 and Preston was 19. Preston was a disciplinarian who sent Nigel (whom he refers to as Podge) to a boarding school where he was bullied and beaten (he did actually mention this in the show). Preston got involved in the seedier side of things while Nigel was out of the way, which was why he left Nigel at a school that he detested. In Preston's mind he was ensuring that Nigel was not exposed to anything distasteful, as he wanted Nigel to stay innocent for as long as possible, as their parents, he believed, would have wanted. Nigel attended Oxford University when he was 15 but Preston was still in charge of him until he left home a few months after his 20th birthday. Preston treated Nigel appallingly, even though, deep down, he loved him. Nigel was frightened of him and disliked him intensely for a long time. Following some anger management classes and some counselling by a psychologist, Preston felt terribly guilty for what he'd put Nigel through and eventually they reconciled after they'd been on a couple of relic hunts together. This story happens after all that and I refer to it in Timeline.
Everything you read here in chapter one is very significant!
Nigel Bailey, Professor Sydney Fox's young teaching assistant, was sitting at his desk marking midterm papers at Trinity College. He was finding the job more difficult than usual as he was feeling particularly unwell and had felt that way for the past few days. It was hard for him to concentrate feeling as he did, but he and Sydney had spent so much time away from the college lately, on relic hunts, he felt duty bound to complete the task. He considered that once the papers were graded he could go home and sleep; he'd done precious little of that in the last month or so. He hadn't complained to Sydney about how unwell he felt, realising that she'd just send him home and end up doing the work herself, making him feel guilty.
There must have been about six more papers to grade when Sydney suddenly rushed out of her office and told Nigel that she'd just had a call from Harry Platt, a friend of hers from Las Vegas. She explained that Harry had found some ancient manuscripts which had clues that could lead to the whereabouts of a massive underground cavern in the Grand Canyon, where the Hopi Indian tribe once lived. She went on to say that the Hopi's have been trying to locate that sacred cavern for about two hundred years, but now, with these manuscripts, Harry believes it could be found.
"Nigel, Harry thinks there will probably be hundreds of Hopi relics down there, that either the tribe themselves will want, or that we can donate to the Heard Museum, in Phoenix. Won't it be an amazing find Nige?"Sydney asked, as she picked up a few books off a shelf and placed them on Nigel's desk. She was so caught up in thinking about this new hunt that she hadn't even noticed that her assistant was sitting there looking quite upset.
"Syd, I'm exhausted, we only came back from those hunts in England four days ago; do we really need to go on another one so soon?" Nigel asked; looking quite pained "that cavern has been there for millions of years, another week or so won't matter!"
"Nigel, you know how quickly rival relic hunters find out about new hunts, and you have to admit… it would be great to give the lost relics back to the Hopi's, or even that museum. The Heard Museum is an amazing place, but they always need extra artefacts to attract more visitors"Sydney said, hoping that comment would convince Nigel to become more enthusiastic.
"Syd, I'm not feeling well, I was going to finish up here and ask if you'd mind if I went home, I don't have the stamina that you have and besides, you won't need me, Harry is perfectly capable of going with you, he's an archaeologist and a relic hunter. It's not like you're going to need me to read any glyphs or the like. Can I stay behind this time… please?" Nigel said, giving Sydney a look that would normally evoke sympathy from her.
"You never said a word about not feeling well until I asked you to come on this hunt Nigel! I think you just want to stay here so that you can meet up with Cate again! Yes I know she's back, so don't give me that look. Nige, you know she thinks you're too young for her; you'll just get your heart broken again if you keep seeing her! How many times has that happened now? Three, or is it four? She comes into your life, you get close and then you don't hear from her for months! I have to watch you breaking your heart time and time again; well I'm telling you now Nigel, no more, you're coming on this hunt, like it or not!"Sydney yelled, wagging her finger at Nigel, who was looking up at her with a very hurt expression on his face.
"Cate's back in town?" he said, looking down, sadly "I didn't know Syd. I, I don't want to go through that again either…. she, she hasn't contacted me anyway" he said, looking up at Sydney, hoping she'd realise he was telling the truth, as Cate Hemphill, who was an Interpol Agent and a friend to both of them, hadn't actually contacted him this time, which really upset him, as she'd apparently contacted Sydney!
"Nige, you're always the first person she contacts when she's in Boston, so don't give me that innocent look!"
"Syd, she didn't ring me… um, when did you get to know she was here anyway?" Nigel asked, hoping Sydney had a reasonable explanation for not telling him Cate was coming to town; although he supposed what she'd just said qualified for that.
"She rang me two days ago; I was waiting for you to tell me you're going to go out with her again!"Sydney said, looking closely at Nigel to judge his reaction.
"I haven't spoken to her, I really don't feel well; that's why I don't want to go to Las Vegas, not because of Cate" he said, thinking I wonder why she didn't call me.
"Nige, you do look tired but I don't believe you're sick, so don't go using that as an excuse to stay here. Even if the hunt doesn't interest you, it interests me, so you're coming, am I being clear!" Sydney said; looking at him, realising he was quite unhappy.
"Yes Syd, alright, but I need to go home and get my rucksack first" he said, looking at her like a scolded child.
"Come on Nigel, I'm sorry, I didn't mean to shout at you, I'll meet you at the airport at six, OK, I'll be at the usual place" she said, feeling a bit guilty.
"If I have to" he said, shrugging his shoulders and tossing the papers he'd not yet graded to one side. He put on his coat and cycling helmet and left without saying another word.
The airport was crowded but Sydney and Nigel almost always met by the 'Boston Store' so they couldn't miss each other. By twenty past six Sydney was still alone; she was getting annoyed as she thought Nigel was making her wait deliberately. She kept looking at her watch and then around the airport, but there was no sign of him. By seven she'd called his cell phone five times, but it was switched off, she was furious; he'd never done anything like this before. She thought she'd give him ten more minutes; then she'd have no choice but to leave without him and he'd be in big trouble when she got back!
She actually waited fifteen minutes but then she heard the last call for the Vegas flight over the tannoy system, so she could wait no longer.
When she arrived in Las Vegas Harry was, unfortunately, not there to meet her. Damn, she thought, am I going to be stood up by everyone! She called Harry's cell but got no reply. Luckily Harry had told her when he rang that he was staying at the Mirage, on the Strip, so she took a taxi there. Upon quizzing the receptionist she was advised that there was no Mr Platt staying there and, having checked the records for the past week, there'd been no guests with that name. Sydney was confused; she thought she knew Harry's voice, she was sure it was him that rang her …. or was it? It was too late now to do anything about it, so she just checked in for the night.
Nigel had had every intention of meeting Sydney at the airport but he never made it past his front door!
He awoke, what he assumed was the next day, and had no idea where he was; all he knew was he felt awful. The room was completely dark, which made him realise he wasn't in his own apartment. Had he been at home the lights from the city would be shining through his window, but there was nothing but blackness, apart from some tiny blue flashing lights, just in front of him. Nigel called out "hello, is there anybody there!"
Suddenly a door opened, letting in a little light and a woman's voice spoke very calmly and gently "it's alright Nigel; don't be frightened, you've not been well and I've been looking after you."
"What's the matter with me, where am I?" Nigel asked; feeling just dreadful.
Nigel felt her put something on his arm and in a rather motherly tone he heard her say "go back to sleep sweetie, you'll feel better in the morning and we can talk then."
Nigel was about to speak again, when he fell fast asleep.
When Nigel woke up he had no idea how long he'd been asleep, although he felt quite a lot better than the day before, or whenever that was, and was grateful for that. The room was no longer pitch black but very bright, ultra modern and rather strange looking. He didn't recognise any of the machines or other bits of technology that surrounded him, but he guessed he must be in a hospital, although there were no other patients that he could see.
A few minutes after he woke up a woman in her mid fifties, with red hair just below the shoulders, walked in wearing a blue coat over what looked like her regular clothes. Nigel thought she looked very kind and must be a doctor.
"Hello Nigel, my name's Beverly Crusher, how are you feeling sweetie?" she said smiling at him.
"I'm, um, I'm feeling a lot better now. Who did you say you are?" he asked.
"Beverly Crusher, I'm a doctor; would you like a glass of water?" she asked, looking at him the same way a mother would look at her young child.
"Yes please, um, what hospital is this? And what's wrong with me doctor?" Nigel asked, nervously, thinking he must be seriously ill if he was in a hospital such as this.
"Nigel, you'll be fine, everything will be revealed to you in a little while, just drink this and I'll go and get the captain, he asked to see you the moment you woke up" Beverly said, handing Nigel a glass before walking towards the door.
"The captain? What captain?" Nigel said, wondering where on earth he was.
"I'll be back in a minute sweetie, don't get out of bed, or you'll feel sick" the doctor said, as she left the room.
Nigel, being his usual inquisitive self, was about to get up to look around when a feeling of nausea came over him, forcing him to lay back down. About five minutes later Beverly walked back in with a bald headed man wearing a maroon coloured top and black trousers. His outfit looked like a uniform, but it was not one that Nigel recognised.
"This is Captain Jean Luc Picard" Beverly said to Nigel, as she wiped the hair out of her young patient's eyes.
"Very pleased to meet you Nigel" the captain said "how are you feeling?"
Nigel gave him a nod and said "I'm OK, I suppose Sir; I felt a bit sick just now though when I tried to get up. Um, please Sir, will you tell me where I am, does Sydney know I'm here?" he asked, thinking I hope she comes to see me soon.
"Nigel you are in sickbay, on the Enterprise, I'm the captain. I just wanted to check that you're alright. Now I want you to stay in that bed and go back to sleep until Doctor Crusher tells you that you're well enough to get up. If you go outside that door you'll be in big trouble young man" Jean Luc said, firmly. Nigel didn't like the captain's tone and began to feel nervous but he didn't want to wait any longer for an explanation.
"The Enterprise? Is it a ship? Please tell me why I'm here? Nigel asked, in a slightly raised, yet high pitched voice; he often sounded like that when he was nervous or annoyed.
"Look Nigel, I want to hold back on answering those questions until you're completely well. The doctor here keeps reminding me that you're quite young and you need special consideration before I explain things to you" Jean Luc said, feeling a little niggled because he was used to being immediately obeyed.
Nigel realised that he couldn't remember anything past the point of arriving at his apartment, yesterday, or whenever that was? He remembered thinking he'd better get a couple of new batteries for his torch and some protein bars for the hunt in the Grand Canyon, but that's all he could recall; after that everything was blank.
"Please Sir, tell me now!" Nigel shouted, feeling rather alarmed and bowing his head when he saw the annoyed expression the captain was giving him.
"Go to sleep Nigel!" the captain said quite crossly, and walked away.
I KNOW I HAVE GIVEN VERY LITTLE AWAY HERE BUT WHEN YOU READ FURTHER CHAPTERS YOU WILL BE VERY SURPRISED AT WHAT HAS TO HAPPEN ON EARTH, in 2003, WHILE NIGEL IS ON THE ENTERPRISE IN THE 24TH CENTURY!
PLEASE REVIEW - I would like to know if you are interested, a nice review would show you are and would be very much appreciated. TIMELINE DOES HAVE A VERY HAPPY ENDING TOO, ONE WHICH I'M SURE YOU WILL LOVE! OH IN CASE YOU ARE WONDERING, TIMELINE IS NOWHERE NEAR AS LONG AS MY OTHER FANFIC!