Chapter 5: “The Real Year of Hell, Part I”
Written by Tim Mohr, aka “Cureboy”
“Captain’s Log, Stardate 53025.3. My goodness, how time flies... Seems like only yesterday it was Stardate 52832.5. Before you know it, we’ll be reaching Stardate 54321.6. But anyways, we have resumed a course for the Alpha Quadrant... again. The last few days have been uneventful. And you know what that means when I say that. Something really really eventful is about to happen. I also must confess that I was hurt when my Holographic Boyfriend dumped me for the Blonde Bimbo in the ‘Captain Proton’ simulation. But I made a deletion to his program, so he’s not really much of a man anymore... mwaaa ha ha ha ha!!”
Suddenly, a Krenim warship decloaks off the port bow. Janeway shrieks, “Why the hell is it always the port bow???” Tuvok responds, “I did not know we had any other bows.”
Mr. Kim runs a scan and says, “Captain!! It’s a Krenim warship!” Chakotay says, “The Krenim? Aren’t these the aliens that Kes warned us about in the ‘Before and After’ episode?” Janeway shrugs her head and says, “Kes?? Who’s Kes??”
Voyager hails the warship, and the evil Captain Braxton appears on screen. Janeway gasps, “Captain Braxton?? Are you ‘20th Century A leads to B, leads to C, leads to A’ Braxton or are you ‘Idiotic I can’t find a bomb without Seven of Nine’s help’ Braxton?” Braxton responds, “I am both... and neither... and I have come to obliterate Voyager from the timeline.” Janeway frets, “Damn!! I thought that since we finished Sweeps Month last week, we wouldn’t have to do another time travel story for another few months.”
The warship fires on Voyager and Tuvok yells, “Shields down to 99.53231%. We’ve lost life support on Deck 15.” Janeway responds, “Deck 15? Never heard of it... Mr. Tuvok, prepare to return fire!!” Tuvok takes a quick shot of tequila and says, “Okay Captain, I’m prepared.” Janeway reconsiders, “Wait!! Why don’t we engage our cloaking device?” Chakotay is dumbfounded, “Since when do we have a cloaking device???” Janeway says, “Every time you buy two tri-cobalt devices, you get a cloaking device at half price... I thought everybody knew that Chakotay, you pedantic drone.”
So Voyager cloaks and Chakotay asks, “Now what?” Janeway contemplates, “Hmmmm... we haven’t had a staff meeting for a couple episodes, let’s have one now.” Minutes later, the senior officers are in the briefing room, totally silent... All of them looking at each other with absolutely clueless looks on their faces.
Suddenly, Mr. Ayala pages Janeway, “Captain!! There is an unauthorized shuttle launch in progress!!” Janeway says, “Ayala, you can speak??? My God!!” Ayala continues, “It’s Naomi Wildman, Captain, she’s taken the Delta Flyer out for a joyride.” Janeway loses her cool, “That little brat! Ayala, lock phasers on the Delta Flyer, prepare to blow the damn thing out of the sky!!” Chakotay whispers to Janeway, “Kathryn, remember the talk we had last week... We decided we were going to try to be a little more tolerant...” Janeway looks disappointed and says, “Very well... Lock on to her with a tractor beam.” Torres chimes in, “Um... Captain... We don’t have a tractor beam.” Janeway says, “Don’t tell me... Tuesday?”
So another way is found to bring back the Flyer and the staff meeting continues. Seven of Nine says, “The presence of the Krenim warship has created dozens of different temporal paradoxes.” Janeway asks, “What do you mean?” Seven explains, “For example, fifteen minutes ago I called you a coffee-guzzling cow... But from your point of view, you haven’t heard me say it yet.” Janeway is not amused and says, “Listen here, you bionic bimbo...”
Suddenly the lights go dark and the red alert lights start flashing like crazy. Janeway is fed up and says, “Oh, for crying out loud... Enough with the Red Alerts all the time, every time somebody breaks a nail we go to Red Alert... Must we always be this melodramatic??” So the officers return to the Bridge and find that a Delta Quadrant Pizza Delivery Vessel has decloaked off the port bow, the pilot hails and says, “Hey, did you folks order some food?” Janeway barks, “Absolutely not, you pedantic drone!” The Doctor pulls Janeway aside and says, “Captain... I think it’s another Temporal Paradox... According to the chronometers, its 4:35 PM on Voyager, but on the Pizza Ship, it 5:35 PM. Time Paradox... We did order a pizza, we just haven’t ordered it yet.” Janeway rolls her eyes and says, “Doctor, just because the damn clock is wrong doesn’t mean we are in the midst of a temporal Paradox... You ever hear of Daylight Savings Time??”
So Voyager decloaks, and the Pizza Ship leaves and Captain Braxton hails Janeway and says, “Captain, Your ship is on the verge of destruction... I’ve hit your ship with sixteen of my chroniton torpedoes... I’ve destroyed more than half your ship... I suggest you surrender.” Janeway says, “What are you talking about, you pedantic drone?? Our ship is not damaged at all, and you have not hit us with a single chroniton torpedo.” Braxton explains, “Oh, yes, Captain, I have damaged your ship with 16 torpedoes... I just haven’t launched them yet... Temporal paradox.” At that moment 16 chroniton torpedoes come out of nowhere, rip through Voyager’s shields and destroy more than half the ship. Janeway says, “Wow... Good call there, Braxton.”
Chakotay suggests, “We should use a paradox against him.” Janeway groans, “Ugh, I hate time travel.” Chakotay nods in agreement and Janeway says, “Oh well, let’s just get this started before my headache gets any worse.” Mr. Kim (who reverts back to the defiant Harry Kim from the “Demon” episode) says, “Hey Captain, I heard you used that line on your boyfriend all the time, and you wonder why he married somebody else...” Janeway is not amused.
Captain Braxton says, “Captain, I’m going to leave now, but I’ll be back in ten minutes, and there better be some surrendering going on.” With that, Captain Braxton disappears.
A short time later, Janeway assembles the crew for a speech, “Each of you has done their best... But determination alone won’t hold this ship together... We’ll need a hell of a lot of scotch tape to hold this ship together... We’ve lost 30 out of 15 decks... More than half the ship has been destroyed... Life support is nearly gone... And we’re down to the last pot of coffee, and if you think I’m sharing it with you pedantic drones, you got another thing coming.”
Janeway continues, “I promised myself that I would never give this order... But asking you to stay, would be asking you to die. ...You will proceed to the escape pods and abandon ship.”
Tuvok interrupts, “Um, Captain, the escape pods have all been destroyed.” Janeway rephrases her speech, “Oh, okay... Well, then, you will all proceed to the transporter room and will be beamed into space. Set your course for the Alpha Quadrant. Along the way, try to secure some oxygen, because there won’t be much of it in the vacuum of space. The senior officers and I will remain on board as long as possible... Laughing our asses off while you gasp for air... And when we find each other again, I expect all of you to be in one piece, with some interesting stories to tell, and with some sort of souvenir for me. Good luck.......”