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Wretches and Kings

Posted on Sun May 21st, 2017 @ 6:06am by Lieutenant Kazyah Linn

Mission: S2E1 - Secrets
Location: Kaz's Quarters
Timeline: Mission Day 85 - 2343 hours

An alert for a priority one message flashed across Kaz's screen as the chirp echoed through his quiet quarters. He groaned, dragging himself off the couch where he was dozing off. He looked down at the shattered glass that still littered the floor of his living room. He hadn't bothered to clean it up since the night he broke it with the figurine. The painful memories flooding back to him, like an uninvited guest who had already overstayed their welcome. He took a deep breath and walked around the crystals, making sure not to step on them.

He yawned, stretching his arms, as he walked towards his desk. He contemplated putting a shirt on, but decided against it. Whoever this was was interrupting his personal time and so they would get him in whatever condition he was in.

Plopping down in the chair, he pressed a finger to the console. "Open channel," he said, rubbing his eyes.

"Greetings, my son." The face on the display was one which haunted the dreams of many. "I trust that you are well."

Where Kaz was once still sleepy, the adrenaline rush of seeing Saalkan immediately perked him up. His hands gripped the arm rests of the chair, his knuckles turning white with the strain. "Saalkan," he said, his voice sounding horse as his throat dried. His heart was slamming in his chest as he tried to level his breathing.

"Be not troubled, Kazyah." A morose smiled played at the mad Vulcan's lips. "I will not presume overmuch upon your evening, only to tell you that I am embarking on a journey to a place of wretches and kings to claim what is mine, and that in so doing I shall leave you a gift."

"What gift?" Kaz said, his face unwavering to hide the internal struggle that he felt.

"The gift of choice," Saalkan said cryptically. "It is one that I will grant no other. Remain on the Vindex at your peril. Should you choose to remain and survive the coming days and weeks, then you will undoubtedly be stronger for it. Just..." Saalkan cocked his head a few degrees, then continued with eyes narrowed. "... I do not know if you are ready. And I would so hate to lose you."

"Leaving the Vindex would mean leaving Starfleet behind," Kaz said, swallowing hard at the thought. "What would I do instead?"

Saalkan arched his eyebrow as if that were a foolish question. "Indeed." His face turned to a disapproving scowl. "You have not been studying the Rod of Kel I left with you."

"I haven't had the opportunity," Kaz said, honestly. "But I'd like to."

"Perhaps I've misjudged you," Saalkan scoffed. "I wonder at how willing you are to walk the silver sands of the stars and follow me to the one place of first time and space." The Vulcan hummed with displeasure, but something about Kazyah's facial expression elicited a strained chuckle.

"See that you do not waste my second gift as you have the first. A third may not be forthcoming."

"Let me come with you," Kaz said, surprising even himself at the request. "Teach me."

Saalkan took pause. "I would consider your request if you had freed your mind. But, alas, where I am going, I must tread alone. If you choose poorly, perhaps I will see you in passing."

The mad Vulcan grinned ear to ear and cackled from deep within his chest. With a wave of his hand, the transmission ended.

Kaz slammed his hands on the desk as the computer screen went blank. He looked around his room, though he wasn't quite sure why.

Standing, Kaz walked across his quarters and into his bedroom. After a few minutes of pulling out a few things and shoving them into a bag, he slung the bag over his shoulder as he walked from the room.

He stopped next to the counter as a gleam of light reflected from the Rod of Kel as it sat there. After a slight hesitation, he grabbed the object and placed it around his neck, tucking the rod into his shirt as he left the room.


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