ili has found the man of her dreams
...dreams that soon become nightmares!
What starts as an erotic fantasy turns into deadly danger that spans the polar opposites of good and evil. Should she trust her feelings for this lover from the Mirror Universe who haunts her sleeping hours? Can love wash the blood from his hands?
A Star Trek Fan Fiction By
J. R. Gershen-Siegel
G-13- Parents Strongly Cautioned
Some material may be not be appropriate
for children under 13
This is a fan written work
The copyrights & trademarks of Star Trek are owned by
Paramount Pictures, CBS Corporation and their licensee, Pocket Books. Any attempt to sell or rent this book should be reported to the copyright owners for their action
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First pdf online edition 03/01/2011
Published for TrekUnited by
It didn't hurt.
Well, not too much, when Lili was slammed into the wall. The wall gave. It seemed softer, more pliable than whatever the heck starship walls are really made of.
She was spun around, and being kissed, all in pitch blackness.
She went with it, kissing back, a little surprised but not unnerved.
It was hot.
At that very thought, her clothes instantly disappeared – but that is what happens in dreams.
The kissing continued.
The man was, who was he?
About her height. Endlessly touching her. Endlessly insatiable.
They fell onto a bed. It felt like her bed, with the slightly harder side on the left.
Rolled around, again and again.
Sweating and grappling.
His skin was salty with perspiration. He had a bit of stubble but was otherwise clean shaven. His forehead was a little high, his arms muscular. She had no idea who he was.
He said absolutely nothing, and she followed suit.
But there was just one moment when she felt she had to cry out in joy.
And that was when she woke up.
"What was that all about?" Jenny asked.
"Huh, what?" Lili was still groggy.
"Roomie, you kinda grunted in your sleep. Actually, it was more like squealing."
"I talk in my sleep? You know that," Lili said, stretching.
"This was different. It was like – I could swear you were getting some," Jenny grinned.
"Oh, damn, look at the time! Chef'll kill me if I'm late!" Lili quickly got into chef's whites and left.
"Empress, there's been a slight sensor glitch."
"It's been going on for about an hour. I'd've reported it sooner, but it seemed small."
"An hour? MacKenzie, run a diagnostic. Fix it or figure it out. Now." The Empress was in no mood for incompetence.
"Yes, of course." Ensign MacKenzie said. It was suddenly hot on the Bridge, and his uniform seemed far too small.
"Commander, there's a small sensor glitch."
"Yes, Ensign MacKenzie?" T'Pol said.
"Didn't seem like much but it was going for around an hour or so."
"How interesting. Run a diagnostic and tell Lieutenant Reed when he comes in."
"Yes, Commander." MacKenzie started the diagnostic.
Get up!" Jenn shoved him.
"What?" he was still groggy.
"Look at the time. The Empress doesn't like it when you're late, Old Man."
"Huh? Oh yeah, I should go."
"Ugh," Jenn complained.
"What? Oh, man. You better get to your shift, too."
"Sure thing. I wonder what they'd say if they knew a Lieutenant such as yourself did such, ugh, things."
"See if I care." He finished putting on his uniform and raced out.
The Bridge was its usual somber place when he arrived. "What's going on?" he asked.
"I'm having trouble with MacKenzie." The Empress said. She looked peeved.
"My responsibility, of course," he said, "May I use the Ready Room?"
"Of course." she replied.
"Ensign MacKenzie, if you please." The Ensign walked in with him.
"Look", he said, after the door had safely shut behind them. "I know you came out of a different team, and so did I, but in this team we're cooperative until you prove yourself otherwise. So tell me what happened."
"It was a sensor. It had a strange reading for about an hour or so. I, I still don't know what caused it." MacKenzie shifted his weight from one foot to the other.
"When did it end and when did it start?"
"It ended about eleven minutes ago. And it started maybe fifty-seven minutes before that. I can get the actual numbers if you want."
"That's all right, Ensign." he did a quick calculation in his head. The end more or less matched when his dream about the girl had ended. As for whether the starting times matched, that was tougher to determine.
"Oh, yes, Ensign. Wool gathering for a second there. Here's what we'll do. There aren't a lot of spare working sensors. So let's keep this one and see if the same thing happens in the next, I dunno, forty-eight hours. If it happens again, we'll have someone from Tucker's team swap it out for a working one and do a full diagnostic. If not, then we're good to go. Sound good to you?"
"Oh, and Ensign? Next time, just tell the Empress that I'll deal with it, okay?"
"Yes, of course. Thank you, sir."
They emerged from the Ready Room and the Empress approved of their plan, but not until after she had gotten him to monitor the sensor regularly.
Lili's day went somewhat differently.
Chef had, for some reason, gotten onto an orange kick.
Orange juice, orange chicken, baby carrots with an orange and dill sauce and, for dessert, orange sorbet. Lili didn't question. That was not her job as sous-chef. She just had to follow orders.
So all day long, it was the same.
Zest. Halve. De-pit. Juice. Ream. Discard whatever remained.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Over and over and over again. By the time it was time to get dinner out, she had about lost her mind with boredom. Her mind wandered while she was wielding the French knife, and she thought of the dream. She ended up slipping and cutting her left hand.
It wasn't that bad, so she finished up dinner and had some herself, but eventually the pain because unbearable. She hustled off to Sick Bay which was where she found herself.
"Tomorrow, Empress, we should be at the Lafa System," he said, after checking the sensor one last time.
"Anything interesting about this one?" she yawned.
"It has four stars, very unusual."
"Not what I had in mind. You know science bores me." she complained.
"Yes, of course. It's also close to Klingon space. A good spot for an outpost," he said.
"That's more like it." she purred. "Shift's over. Bright and early tomorrow."
"Of course." he departed.
"Ensign, what brings you here?" asked Dr. Phlox.
"This," Lili showed him her hand.
"That seems rather superficial. Not that I am complaining of the company, of course."
"I chopped oranges all day long, Doc."
"I see, so you've got some citric acid getting in there. Let's get it cleaned out, shall we?"
"Thanks. I mean, I'm usually good with the French knife. I guess I was distracted," Lili said.
"Oh? Are you getting enough sleep?" The doctor asked, as he scrubbed her hand.
"Yes, but it's very dream-filled. At least last night was. Maybe that's not very restful?"
"Ah, dreams. Human dreams are so interesting. May I ask what yours was about, if you remember it? I am fascinated by your unconscious states."
"Uh, Doc, it's a little embarrassing."
"I am your doctor, you can tell me anything," Phlox insisted.
"It's just, this one was, um, it was rather earthy."
"Then I am even more interested," Phlox paused a moment. "I am of course joking. Not here to intrude on your privacy."
"Do Denobulans dream?" asked Lili.
"We do. But it's not as pleasurable as yours, I'm afraid. We mainly seek to solve problems. Like my most recent one. My Derellian bat was off her feed. I had a dream that I had been giving her too much potassium and, lo and behold, I changed her feed and now she's a happy bat again."
"That's great, Doc."
"All fixed up."
"Thank you. And, happy dreaming," Lili said.
She got back to her room and barely made it into sweatpants before sleep overtook her.
This time, it was different.
She figured out it was him immediately, despite the pitch darkness. They kissed but he pulled back, and put a pillow under her back.
He kissed her again, and again their clothes melted away. She took his hand and guided it to her face, to let him know she was smiling. He did the same.
He kissed, touched and even put his face against everything. He moved slowly and deliberately, and she got the distinct impression that he was somehow mapping her.
Every time she tried to take his face in her hands and bring it to hers, he pushed her back gently. He was having none of it, and continued kissing her.
When her breathing became labored and husky, he finally came back to her, kissing her deeply. He buried his face in her shoulder and inhaled.
He stopped for a second, a little confused. "Oranges?" he asked, breaking their mutual silence for the very first time.
She chuckled. "Yes."
They kissed. He didn't move much, just kept kissing her over and over again.
She brought his hand to her face again, to show him she was still smiling. He did the same, kissing her fingers as their alarms went off and they awoke in far different bedrooms.
"Ugh! Not again!" Jennifer Crossman was in no mood.
"Oh, huh, how strange," he said, "Not as bad as last time, though.
"Listen, Jenn, I ..." he paused.
"You what?" she demanded.
"I'm, I'm just tired. I'll take care of it later."
He pulled on his uniform and escaped to the Bridge, the frying pan to the fire.
"Roomie! You were hot and heavy again last night!" Jennifer Crossman joked.
"Huh, yes, I guess I was," Lili said.
"Are we gonna have oranges on everything again today?" Jenny whined.
"I'll make sure we don't. Gawd, I think I'm set for oranges for a while," Lili said, then paused. Oranges. He had said that. She sighed a little.
"Gotta run!" Jenny said, "Commander Tucker needs me to test sensor polarities!" She was out the door like a shot.
"The Lafa System is unusual, Captain," said T'Pol. "Four stars. In your own Solar System, Jupiter is almost a failed star, and Saturn possibly could be as well. In the Lafa System, there are three extra stars that probably were initially gas giants, but they became stars instead, as nuclear fusion was ignited."
"That is interesting." Captain Archer said, "The strategic position is good, too."
"Captain, if I may interject." Ensign Hoshi Sato said.
"Yes?" he turned to her. She didn't normally have a lot to say unless it was communications-oriented.
"This culture, this language is probably rather telling. See, the four stars are all named. Lo, Abic, Fep and Ub. Now, that's not remarkable in and of itself, but the names have other meanings."
"You mean like Aloha in Hawaiian means both hello and good-bye?" asked Ensign Travis Mayweather as he guided the ship through the outer reaches of the system.
"Yes, exactly!" Hoshi smiled. "And the names have all of these, well, these value judgments attached to them. Lo isn't just the name of the big, white star. It also means sun, light, and goodness. Abic is the second-largest star – the yellow one – and it means second or two. Fep is the dark orangey one, and it means small. Ub is the red dwarf star and it means, red, dwarf or undersized, and evil."
"Evil?" asked Captain Archer. "The itchy, captivating light of an irresistible dark star," he said, quoting a late twenty-first century poet.
"That's the one," Hoshi said.
"Fascinating." T'Pol replied.
"Oh, sorry," said the Captain. "Other strategic information, T'Pol?"
"The culture has warp drive but they never leave their own system, so far as we are aware. They simply shuttle from planet to planet, depending on temperature, crops, festivals and, perhaps some other purposes."
"Like snowbirds, going to a warm climate when the Winter comes?" asked Travis.
"Not a bad analogy, I'd say," said Captain Archer. "Take us in closer."
"The First Officer and I will be in the, uh, Ready Room." The Empress said when he walked in.
"Yes, of course, Empress," he said, taking his post and relieving Ensign MacKenzie. "Mac, wait before you leave. And, Empress, I will assure you are not disturbed."
"Good. You're in charge while I'm ... busy," she said, beckoning to Travis, who followed in eager anticipation.
Once the door to the Ready Room was closed, there was a sound of some thumping and banging.
Ensign MacKenzie looked at him. "Sir?"
"Did we, uh, have any more sensor glitches yesterday?"
The banging was becoming more audible, and it was being matched with rather loud moaning.
"How long this time?"
"Around seven hours."
"Do you have the data that was collected?"
"On the console, sir."
"All right, we'll swap out the sensor. Go to Tucker's team – don't send a message, just go straight there – and have the sensor replaced. See to it personally."
"Yes, sir!" MacKenzie was audibly and visibly delighted, and fairly well ran off the Bridge.
"What is everyone staring at?" he demanded, as everyone got back to work and the banging got louder and faster.
This time it wasn't oranges and chopping. It was pasta water.
Lili was again distracted, and some of it sloshed on her left arm.
The Chef pronounced it a second-degree burn and ordered her to Sick Bay.
Dr. Phlox tut-tutted and fussed as he bandaged her arm. "More issues with sleeping, Ensign?"
"If you mean more vivid dreams then, yes."
"Well, they may be interfering with your waking life. I don't want you coming in tomorrow with a detached fingertip or anything of the sort."
"Of course not. Doctor, I, I know that one of the symptoms of insanity is being unable to tell the difference between fantasy and reality."
"That is one definition, Ensign, yes."
"Well, I still, I know the difference, all right? But I also, I, like, it's weird. I have, um, my body. It feels like I really did have a visitor last night."
"Oh?" The Denobulan arched an eyebrow.
"I feel, uh, like something's happened. Does that make any sense?"
"Your medical history is that you do talk in your sleep."
"Good thing I don't do anything strategic," she said.
"True. But as I was saying, perhaps you've become more active."
"It could explain some things." The doctor said, "And you have rather long nails. It's possible that you scratched yourself." He drew a sheet around the bed she was sitting on. "I can do an examination now, and take a look."
"Okay." she lay back.
"Hmm, now let's see. So you have been having rather graphic dreams of late. Ensign, dreams are a definite window into human psychology. You are not in a relationship now, correct?"
"No, I'm not, and it's been a really, really long time."
"You seem to be a rather lonely woman."
"I don't talk to anyone, really, but my roommate and Chef. And you, right now. I'm older than everyone on the ship except for the captain."
"And T'Pol, of course."
"Yes, of course," Lili said, "Doctor, did you find something?"
He frowned at her. "I will have to report this."
"Report? What are you talking about?" She sat up in alarm.
"I have found – Ensign, you have been fully asleep during these encounters?"
"And, by definition, consent cannot be achieved from a sleeping person."
"What? I, Doc, this was consensual. Believe me, it was totally consensual."
"You may believe that, but I must intervene as I believe a crime has been committed."
"A, a crime?"
"Ensign, given my findings, I must ask you: have you been assaulted before?"
Ensign MacKenzie fairly well sprinted to Engineering. There she was, in all her be-uniformed glory: Jennifer Crossman.
She was sketching a schematic using a PADD, and didn't see him come up. He grabbed her behind and turned her around.
"Aidan!" she gasped. "What if somebody sees?"
"Then they'll see," he said. They broke apart when Commander Tucker walked by, then came together again when he had departed.
"Why are you here?" she asked, ignoring him nuzzling her neck.
"The old man told me to get you to change out a sensor that's not working, and investigate the failure in the old one."
"Me, personally? I don't think so."
"Well, he said Engineering, so I naturally gave this task to the hottest girl in the Department."
"He must finally be slipping," she said, "Why else would he just give you this particular assignment?"
"I think you're right, he is slipping. He coulda really reamed me the other day, but he was actually, I dunno, almost nice about it. Maybe he's lulling us into a trap. You know, a false sense of security," Aidan said.
"Maybe," Jenn admitted. "But I don't know. He's acting weirdly lately. I'll feel him out, see if I can get anything out of him."
"I'd like to …," Aidan said, leering at her.
"Please, I'm supposed to be working."
"Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know that. But can't you get away a little?"
"Hmm, the sensor is located inside that Jeffries tube over there. It'll be a tight squeeze."
"That's what I like," he said.
"It'll have to be quick," she said, grabbing a replacement sensor from a storage area. She looked around nervously. No one was coming.
"I can do quick," he said, breathing heavily in her ear.
"Yeah, I know," she said.
"What's that supposed to mean?" Aidan complained.
"Oh, nothing," she said, hoisting herself into the narrow electronics service tube, and pulling him in with her.
"That's more like it," he said, after kissing her.
Clothes weren't removed, just pushed to the side and down, and it was, as promised, quick.
Neither of them noticed the faintest of cracking sounds.
Lili didn't want to hear any more of it, and she pulled her uniform back on and ran back to her quarters. What? It made no sense whatsoever, but nothing did any more.
She took a hot shower and willed herself to calm down.
The Empress and the First Officer emerged from the Ready Room after several hours. Her hair was askew, his uniform was torn slightly. They were both smiling stupidly. "How soon until we get to communications range?" she asked. "I need to get someone to surrender." she grinned.
"Should be there tomorrow, Empress," he said.
"Very well. Dismissed."