If you are seeing this paragraph, the site is not displaying correctly. You can see the content, but your current browser does not support CSS which is necessary to view our site properly. For the best visual experience, you will need to upgrade your browser to Netscape 6.0 or higher, MSIE 5.5 or higher, or Opera 3.6 or higher. If, however, you don't wish to upgrade your browser, scroll down and read the content - everything is still visible, it just doesn't look as pretty.
And Baby- Ch. 7
And Baby Makes Four
By Samantha Quinn
All disclaimers in Part I.
Author’s Note/Disclaimer/Warning: This Chapter Rating has been increased to R. It is not graphic, but does contain Torture, and references to Rape (none actually occurs), and general pillage. If that’s not your cup of tea (which is probably a good thing), don’t read any further. But the Gabbaccians are nasty, nasty, nasty. They do nasty things.
*Cold.* It was the first conscious thought Malcolm had. It was quickly followed by the realization that he was unable to move. His third cognitive process was the extreme headache throbbing at his temples.
Opening his eyes, he found reasons to explain two of the three variables. His coldness could be explained due to the fact that he was no longer wearing his uniform. Instead, he had for some reason been reduced to only his regulation issued blue skivvies. The immovability could be explained by the shackles binding both his hands and feet to the very cold metal table on which Malcolm’s body had been previously laid horizontally.
The same entities who had decided to fasten Malcolm to the table and, he deduced, undressed him, who had also made certain that his bonds were just tight enough to be neither comfortable nor painful. Instead, Malcolm was in a state of uncomfortable limbo between the two conditions. Similarly, his body had been stretched to an unnatural state of length without inciting actual pain. While Malcolm immediately thought of the medieval stretching devices he had read about as a child, he realized that was more than a slight over-reaction.
*Psychological warfare,* Malcolm noted. *A constant reminder that our captors are in control of making the decisions. Reinforcing our knowledge that they determine our comfort level. They hold the fate of our existence in their very hands.*
Effective, Malcolm acknowledged. Barbaric, but effective.
Turning his head-the only part of his body he could still move freely- slightly to the left he immediately noticed the sleeping form of Sub-Commander T’Pol. *The Gabbaccian ship,* Malcolm remembered somewhat hazily. They were on route to the Gabbaccian ship to help them. How then did they end up here?
Recalling who else had been on that mission, Malcolm glanced about the room for some sign of Trip. Finding none, he realized it prudent to try to wake the Vulcan at his side.
“Sub-Commander,” he whispered, not wanting to alert whoever their captors may have been. When T’Pol did not awaken, he raised his voice slightly and repeated his call. Still, she did not awaken. Frowning slightly, Malcolm repeated the process multiple times until he was speaking in his normal speaking tone. The only sound made by the Vulcan was the sound of her labored breaths. *Damn it,* thought hopelessly as he lay his head back down on the cold metal in a gesture of hopelessness.
From their watchful position in the adjoining room, Nantuck and Jennair watched Malcolm’s waking and ensuing defeat with interest.
//I did not expect him to forfeit so easily// Nantuck remarked.
//The phaser fire we stunned them with was unfortunately quite powerful. Perhaps too powerful. I expect he is still somewhat confused by the events.// Jennair replied.
//Then you anticipate his struggle to begin soon?//
//And is Commander Tucker adequately prepared to prevent such measures?//
//Sodan is taking personal responsibility for that project.//
//Excellent. I am going back to the bridge. Call me when the other one awakens.//
*Which one is it?* Trip wondered. A glance at the robe revealed that it was not Nantuck. *There has to be some way to tell them apart, but I’ll be damned if I know what it is.*
“Greetings, Commander Tucker. Did you have a nice nap?” the Gabbaccian asked.
“Just fine. I take it the engine trouble ya had is all cleared up?” Trip retorted.
“Such spirit, Commander Tucker. Spirit I look forward to breaking.” The malevolence evident in the Gabbaccian’s voice elicited a feeling of dread deep within the pit of Trip’s stomach.
“Where are Malcolm and T’Pol?” he demanded, trying to overlook the trepidation that was beginning to manifest itself within his brain.
The Gabbaccian laughed in response. “Do not worry about your colleagues, Commander Tucker. The doctor, Nantuck, and Jennair are all keeping them company. And as we greatly value the DNA of Lieutenant Reed and Sub-Commander T’Pol, they will be treated comparatively well.”
“Comparatively?” Trip questioned. “Just what the hell does that mean?”
The Gabbaccian leaned forward so that his face was only inches from Trip’s. “It means compared to your circumstances,” he replied as he ran a talon down Trip’s cheek which was enough to draw a light trickle of blood. Trip gritted his teeth, determined not to show how much that hurt.
The Gabbaccian laughed again. “Yes,” he remarked disdainfully. “Such spirit.”
The tone of Lieutenant Reed’s voice was one of concern. The normally calm and collected armory officer sounded nervous, almost frightened. Perhaps it was the out of character emotionalism being displayed by the normally rational security officer that finally convinced T’Pol’s subconscious that the situation was dire enough to warrant waking up.
Opening her eyes, her meticulous science officer’s training took in the contents of the room. The room she was beginning held captive in contained no color. The walls, ceilings, and doors were all a spotless white. The glare of the illumination devices served only to accent their whiteness and, if possible, to make them even more white. There seemed to be no other devices in the room, except for the beds that she and Lt. Reed were strapped too. A small window sat approximately 10 feet above them on the left wall. T’Pol could not discern exactly what purpose it served. However, she surmised it to be some type of observation room.
“I am awake, Lieutenant,” she responded. “Are you injured?”
“No,” Malcolm responded, sounding a bit relieved now that she had awoken.
“Have you been able to ascertain where we are?” she inquired.
“No. I recall that we took a shuttlepod to the Gabbaccian ship and docked in their docking bay,” Malcolm recalled. “And that’s the last thing I remember.”
“My recollection of events is similar to yours,” T’Pol agreed.
“Then I suppose the Gabbaccians were not as friendly as they had led us to believe?” Malcolm guessed.
“It would appear not.”
T’Pol again marveled at the human tendency to use colorful language in situations of crisis. Ignoring it, she replied, “Perhaps our time should be spending our time trying to determine how to escape.” As T’Pol said these words, their metal beds shifted slightly, so that they were now lying perpendicular to the floor instead of their previous horizontal position. A floor, which, T’Pol noted, maintained the sterile whiteness of the walls and ceiling. On the wall in front of them appeared a projection of Commander Tucker and a Gabbaccian.
“Trip?” asked Malcolm in disbelief. There were no devices from which to show such an advanced form of projection visible in the room.
“He cannot hear you, Lieutenant,” said the voice of Jennair. A quick glance at the window above them confirmed that the Gabbaccian was watching them. “However, if you make any attempts to escape, he will be punished for it.”
In frustration, Malcolm curled his fist. The action caused the muscles in his wrists to impart friction against his binds which set of a small alarm.
On the screen in front of him, the Gabbaccian placed a leech like object on Trip’s left temple. As the animal began to suck greedily, Trip’s body contorted with pain. Although he tried very hard to refrain from doing so, Trip was not able to prevent a tiny shriek of agony from escaping his lips.
Malcolm unclenched his fists immediately. As he did so, the alarm stopped ringing and the Sodan removed the leech from Trip’s temples, pulling off a good portion of flesh as he did so, eliciting another moan of pain from Trip.
“Did you like our little pet, my allies?” Jennair asked his prisoners. “It may look like a harmless little leech to you, but is much more. It simultaneously releases powerful electrical shocks through its orifices as it consumes blood, thereby making its prey progressively weaker and weaker. It is fortunate you unclenched your fists, Lieutenant. Gabbaccian leeches can cause death within 10 minutes to an adult human.” He allowed himself a short laugh before adding, “Even our leeches are superior to yours.”
It required all of Malcolm’s previous training to force himself to not respond verbally against with the injustice and anger he felt. Regardless, Jennair was able to benefit from the fervent hostility reverberating in Malcolm’s mind. T’Pol’s abhorrence was more mentally concealed but just as intense.
“Truly, Sub-Commander, I did not believe Vulcans were supposed to have such strong feelings,” he scoffed at the woman. At T’Pol’s silence, he added, “It is no matter. The emotions of both you and Lieutenant Reed shall benefit the Gabbaccian empire well.”
“In what way do you propose to use our perceived emotions as a benefit to your empire?” T’Pol demanded.
“Perhaps I should answer that instead,” chimed the voice of Nantuck. Turning their heads, T’Pol and Malcolm saw the white door swish open to reveal an equally white hallway briefly as Nantuck and Dr. Aron entered the holding area.
“Captain Nantuck, I demand you let us go and return us to the Enterprise,” T’Pol stated. True, she recognized the futility of such a request. Still, it was one that must be made.
//Audacious, isn’t she?// Nantuck jeered mentally.
//Yes, but aren’t all Vulcans?// retorted Jennair.
To T’Pol, Nantuck replied, “No, my dear, I don’t think that will be possible. Not yet. You are both different species and the doctor needs to make certain your DNA is fully compatible before we release you.”
“That you have feigned a pretense of friendship is obvious,” T’Pol noted. “What is not obvious is exactly what your intentions are.” *Other than you are obviously not peaceful species.* she mentally added.
Jennair chortled at her naiveté. “No, T’Pol, we are not a peaceful species,” he told her from his position in the watch room.
“No,” Nantuck agreed. “More precisely, we are a warrior people.”
*A race of warrior birds? How bloody bizarre.* Malcolm thought silently. Unfortunately for him and for Trip, Jennair heard that thought and it did not please him. Alerting Sodan of his displeasure, the Gabbaccian engineer was happy to take out Jennair’s ire on Trip. T’Pol and Malcolm watched in horror as Sodan placed a metal device on Trip’s forehead. Moving away from Trip, Sodan pressed a button on a hand held remote which caused Trip’s body to convulse.
“You may wish to remember that we can read your thoughts, however ethnocentric they may be, Lieutenant,” Jennair told them.
“I apologize,” Malcolm said hurriedly. “I did not mean offense. You do not need to continue to hurt the Commander.”
“No,” T’Pol agreed. “We will not give you reason for further agitation.”
Nantuck came and stood beside her. “A plea, Vulcan?” he inquired. “How emotional. I see Jennair has judged your weaknesses correctly. The engineer has incited feelings of near sensitivity in you.”
“I am a Vulcan. We do not have feelings,” T’Pol replied stoically.
Nantuck laughed in response. “Do you need reminded that we can read your mind? We know better, Vulcan. You have as much emotion as the man lying next to you.” Nantuck glanced up and down her form appreciatively. “Have you wondered, T’Pol, how a species that does not have any females deals with its sexual frustration? It is of course, through the conquests of our empire.”
“No.” Nantuck, T’Pol, Malcolm, Aron, and Jennair turned towards the projection at the sound of Trip’s voice. At first Malcolm and T’Pol believed they had unwittingly done something to give the Gabbaccians reason to hurt Trip. Their fears were laid to rest when he spoke again, “Don’t . . . touch . . . her . . . don’t hurt . . . them.”
*Intriguing. He is barely conscious, yet still taking time to express concern for her well being.* Aron reflected to himself. *He could provide the antidote.*
“The Commander can see us as we can see him?” T’Pol queried.
“Yes, he can see you with a similar projection device as the one that allows you to see him. Someone should inform Commander Tucker that he is no position to make demands,” Nantuck stated. “Further, the only reason I have not yet claimed the rewards of my labor is because the doctor requires untainted DNA. And because of your infernal Vulcan blood, making a match may prove difficult and shall require several attempts.”
“Several attempts to achieve what goal?” T’Pol asked.
In response, the Gabbaccians turned and left the room to leave their guests to ponder just that.
Have a comment to make about this story? Do so in the Trip Fan Fiction forum at the HoTBBS!