NCC - 86105
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Day 33

Posted on Thu Aug 31st, 2017 @ 5:51am by Lieutenant Eric O'Shea

Mission: Livingstone Navigates the Great River

mission24.jpg


Location: Personal quarters
Timeline: 15:30 hrs

Eric awoke, groggy and feeling bleary. His head pounded and at the same time felt like it was packed with wool.

He was also laying face down in the middle of bed and a pool of drying drool. Wiping his face, he pushed himself up slightly groaning as the room tilted at an impossible angle given his known relative bearing and location. He tucked his left shoulder and rolled onto his back, groaning as he went to nudge Kiska, planning on whining enough to get something for his head. Then he froze.

And remembered.

Swearing in Mandarin, a sob choked out and Eric felt tears wanting to come, but they couldn’t. He was too dried out from the booze.

Grunting, he finally mustered enough effort to swing his legs over the edge of the bed which gave him imaginary momentum to sit. That made things so much better and way, way worse at the same time.

Now the room was spinning and his stomach threatened to rebel.

Openly.

With posters and everything.

He swallowed it back manfully and concentrated on the something else to get his mind away from being sick.

Which brought back the mental picture of Kizme.

It worked after a fashion.

The pain in his stomach faded slightly and moved into his heart. That pain was familiar by now. He’d heard people talk about losing limbs and phantom pain that was associated with it. Eric wasn’t sure if it was anything like the heartache he was feeling but if it was, he had a lot of sympathy.

How long he sat with his face in his hands, he wasn’t sure but slowly he came up from air and re-assed the situation. There always was the hair of the dog that bit him, but at the thought of more of the Bajoran rye whiskey, his stomach did a double back flip and did not stick the landing.

Sighing, he levered himself up and took a couple of unsteady steps toward the fresher and climbed in. He ordered the temperature into the painfully cool range and slowly undressed, dropping the clothing in the bottom and ordering the temperature up ten degrees as he went. Forty-five minutes later he climbed out, shivering and slightly more human like.

He checked the time and was surprised to see he still had twelve hours until his next duty cycle.

That sucked.

Eric scrubbed the top of his head and let his mind wander as he keyed the wall screen and looked at the Ferengi station with no real interest. It did remind him of the conference meeting and brought on a whole new round of doubting himself. He’d fallen into the hands-on duties of an Engineering officer easily enough and let that comfort feel more at ease around the other department heads.

Then, he let his mouth open before thinking. The likelihood that there would have been a boarding crew hidden somewhere in the Ferengi vessel waiting to try and board the Livingstone in an audacious act of piracy was next to nil. But he’d thrown it out there as a possibility and ended up looking like an idiot.

He stared again at the Bajoran whiskey bottle and debated climbing back in for a few hours. It was the best idea he had at the moment and he wasn’t interested in sharing his particular brand of feeling sorry for himself with anyone.

Or answer questions to people he really didn’t know. He was still a brevetted, junior lieutenant in a billet he wasn’t sure that he could do. Working on the Ferengi ship had been the closest to feeling like he was actually doing something he was good at since he’d been posted to the Livingstone.

Should he remain in the post? Maybe he’d be better off resigning because if he felt this inadequate it would show in the job eventually. Something would go wrong and it might be just the way things went, but he’d blame himself and the self doubt would creep into his mind further and he’d be even less effective.

And worst of all, it could cost someone their life.

That thought had him picking up the bottle and eyeing the last half of the amber liquid. He had twelve hours and while they were in the Ferengi station, he wouldn’t be needed for anything in engineering or in the squadron bay. Taking a drink despite his better judgement, he grimaced and worked at finishing off the bottle, seeking to shut his mind down and escape into the black.

 

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