A Mirror Shattered #195-196 - 'Little piece of paradise'


<Random, non-descript corridor, USS Pegasus>

Magdalena could see it happening, almost like a train-wreck in slow motion - knowing just what is coming, seeing the Doom from miles away - but unable to stop it. The auburn-haired female officer wearing command-red was working on a PADD, as a half-vulcan ensign wandered past, paused, glanced at the officer, and reached a hand out, to touch the woman's behind.

She startled, balled her fists, snapped around and aimed a devastating punch into the guy's jaw - he stumbled back - she followed up with a powerful snap kick to the guy's family jewels - he doubled over, collapsing in a whimpering heap.

"I Warned you what would happen if you EVER did that again, Ensign! Now, on your feet! NOW! Report to sickbay, get that jaw fixed, then report to the brig! AM I UNDERSTOOD?!" the woman, wearing Lieutenant Commander pips bellowed out. The poor ensign edged away, whimpering "Y-yes Ma'am .." and slowly tried to rise to his feet.

The auburn haired woman then turned to Maggie, still her eyes narrowed, muscles tensed, hands balled into fists, and looking ready to take apart any who would cross her way. "What are YOU looking at?! Whoever the hell you are.." Kristiana blinked, furrowing her brows some and relaxed a bit. Slowly.

Well so much for the civilized front, frontier justice obviously still applied. Maggie ignored the first comment, turning her attention to the man trying to pull himself up along the wall. She hadn't an ounce of sympathy for him- especially if he'd been warned once before.

After the woman had a moment to get over the obviously violent little personal moment that had just occurred, Maggie offered out her right hand as part of her introduction. "The hell I am Lt. Magdalena Deacon, ma'am. Pleasure to meet you." She said, absolutely straight faced.

The older woman gave a soft snort, shaking her head a bit, taking Maggie's offered hand in greet. "Kristiana Petrova, ship's first officer. .. So, I've never seen you before, and I make a point of remembering faces .. You must be from This universe. Why are you onboard my ship ?" She still seemed defensive.

And everyone so damn friendly! It'd be like a picnic. In hell. "Well your commanding officer decided to pull rank and demand that I come on board. Don't ask me why as I've got no orders, just a room and request to settle in a bit. So I'm settlin'.. As much as I can.. Not having the foggiest clue what's goin' on." Maggie smiled, not at all appreciating the humor in the situation, but noting that it was there all the same. "Does he always take a shine to people and cart off with 'em? Interesting tactics to crew your ship."

Petrova blinked slowly, then smacked her forehead with the palm of her hand - the slap echoing in the hallway, and groaned. ".. I'm starting to wonder if Anybody will Ever bother to inform the first officer about such things." Eyes opening again Kris looked at Maggie, shoulders slumped. ".. I'm sorry. Tough couple of days .." A soft sigh, then managing - against all hopes - a reasonably friendly expression again. "Did the good commander mention what you'll be doing for us ? How long you are going to stay ? Do you have quarters yet ?"

"We got so far as quarters and a 'fill you in later'. Other than that I've had a meal and a bath. As good a start as it gets. Can you let me in on what's going on then? I've heard a handful of rumors- some of which I know now are true- but I've.. I've got a responsibility to the people down there. I can't do much these days, but I've kept 'em fed and supplied. I need to know if what I'm doin' here is worth leavin' what I'm doin' there: rank pulled or not. I need to know that they won't be left danglin' in the wind.." Maggie shrugged, knowing it probably wasn't the best idea to question an order, but she needed to for her sake.

".. Well .. First things first .. What are your skills, Miss Deacon? You're wearing purple, which puts you in diplomatic, but I've seen other people in this universe serving outside their department, before .. " The older woman frowned a bit, examining the other officer before her.

"I served aboard the Shenandoah as marine wing co before being reassigned to the diplomatic core after injuries sustained. I'm a.. A deal broker now I guess you'd say. I negotiate for needed goods and help maintain contact with allies and sources." Maggie straightened one shoulder proudly. It sure as hell wasn't a job description she'd ever thought she'd have, but it kept her in the running and her mind sharp.

Kristiana noted Maggie's scars - especially one arm was really bad off - but when you're fighting for survival all the time, something like that is to be expected. Besides, she'd seen worse. ".. Well, since you're already wearing the color, and your skills seem to match, I think we can safely put you in diplomatic. We're lacking a diplomatic officer right now, anyways, and I think we can use one, while we're here."

She frowned a bit, leaning against a wall, folding her arms over each other. ".. We're not from here. This ship .. Everyone onboard. We're from a parallel universe, where the Federation won the Dominion War, eight years ago. We're working on getting back, but .. We're gonna help out Your federation, while we're here. You could function as link between us and .. well, your federation."

"What there is of it.." Maggie said with a small nod. "I'd do that. There's a lot of people who could use the boost- even rumors of a solid ship like this one out there- would really pump morale in the camps. It could do a world of good."

Kristiana nodded. "Good, it's settled then. However, I'm afraid that all this ship has got going for her is the fact that it's in good repair. The Peggy is an old ship, and just a destroyer, on top of that - nowhere near as powerful as a Galaxy or Sovvy. But, I'm sure you recognize the power of propaganda, and if we can increase morale in your federation by using that, well, then that's something worth trying, don't you agree ?"

"Completely. Not that we have many Sovereigns or Galaxy classes any more for more than just parts. I guess I could fill you in on a bit more history about all of that, too, huh?" The smaller of the two women seemed a lot more grounded with a couple of facts tucked under her belt now. "Is there anything that I should be doing now? Last time I was serving on a ship ma'am we were in pure grist to the mill mode so I'm afraid I'm rusty at best on some of what you probably consider standard protocol."

"Protocol can wait. I'd like to hear more about this universe we've found ourselves in. Care for a drink ? We actually have a lounge." Kristiana said with a soft smirk, as she motioned down the corridor.

"Do ducks take to water? I'd love to just see all it is that you do here. How it is that you live here without the pressures.. Hopefully ya'll can get back home again before you come under that same gun, too. But until then I'll collect a few stories I'm sure to take along with me." Maggie started to walk in the direction that the woman indicated, keeping pace with her.

Kristiana led Maggie to the lounge, heading to the bar. She ordered a tall glass of ice-cold juice, and let the other woman order for herself. "Well, the ship's space frame is old, but she has up-to-date scanners, shields and weapons, a good complement of quantum torpedoes and even a squadron of fighters. We've got a lounge, a gym and a holodeck, with many recreational programs .. If there's anything else, just ask. But, please, tell me about your world ?"

"Ferin is pretty much like most of the rest of the badlands. Too hot, too dry, won't grow a damn thing and doesn't like the people on it. Most of our structures are made up of old ships lost when the line was drawn that separated where us curs would back off to while the new principality set up stompin' grounds on our homes. We came to the badlands 'cause we knew they wouldn't: there's nothin' here that they'd want." An ice tea was set in front of Deacon and the woman smiled like a little piece of nostalgia just dropped in her lap.

"You've got stragglers and strangers, starfleet high and low, old friends and enemies all bunking together in hulled out ships and pods and shuttles like a modern day nomadic tribe. A lot of people don't have two sticks to rub together when others brought their fortunes which aren't worth a fig no more. It's a sight really. It's a sight."

Kristiana sighed, shoulders slumping a bit again. ".. It's enough to make anyone depressed, I think. Makes me wish there was something concrete I could do for them - all of them .. But I wouldn't know what."

"The get up and go to fight harder's about the only thing you can do, ma'am. This ship even in repair won't have the food or medicine or firepower to make everything right. All the rest of us- we're the ones that have to make it happen. Paradise has done been lost now. It's about time we found another or stake the claims to make our own." Maggie smiled proudly at her words, wishing she'd had some of the younglings around to hear as inspiration never gave warning when it'd strike. It just did like a bolt out of the blue.

Petrova chuckled softly.. "You have a way with words. As for us.. All we can be, I think, is a symbol. A powerful one, perhaps.. The one to inspire your people ? Who knows.. I hope so." She sighed softly, leaning back a bit on her chair, looking up at the ceiling. "Part of me.. is telling me to not care, because these aren't my people and I'm not supposed to be here.. Another part of me says that if I am here, then obviously I am supposed to be here, and that there is something that I have to do, have to accomplish."

"Flesh and bone make us people. The names we give are the banners we fall under. The people down there are the same as you've got up here, just a bit more edged. Heck, one of your folks has a twin in the Vulcan delegation I was heading out to meet down there. Damn mean and a temper like a starved rattler and your boy here seemed as cool and collected as could be. So you could say they are your people. Or pictures of your people. Pieces of 'em." Maggie shrugged, staring at the ice cubes in her drink. When was the last time she'd seen ice..

"Most of my crew has .. counterparts, here. I know that my own counterpart was once a farmer, but that she disappeared, a few years ago. I wouldn't be surprised if you had a counterpart in my universe as well, miss Deacon." Kristiana sighed softly, closing her eyes, rubbing her temples a bit."

"Hopefully she has the better end of the deal, right?" Grinning wider now, Deacon took a look around the lounge at the people and their poise as they spoke and ate and relaxed.

".. You're alive.. You're healthy.. And you Make A Difference.. " Petrova shrugged a bit. "Doesn't sound like too bad a deal to me? I know many people worse off. Despite the 'peace' that we have, back home."

"I'm alive, yes. And I make a difference for sure, but I'm not what you'd term healthy, ma'am or I'd still be crashin' birds out there somewhere. I don't mind it none, just miss it sometimes." Maggie turned back around and faced Petrova, gray eyes brimming with curiosity. "Besides.. If you were truly at peace you wouldn't need the weapons and such that you're carryin' on ship, would you?"

"True. And you at least Know who your enemy is." She sighed again, finishing her drink, then rising to her feet. ".. I'm sorry, I've had a tough couple of days, and I really need some rest. As for you.. Relax, find yourself some rest.. Maybe use the holodeck a bit.. You're onboard the Pegasus now.. Find yourself the rest you need, Lieutenant.." She paused a moment. "That's an order." she added with a smile.

"Yes ma'am. Thank you." Deacon told her, standing as well. A bit more wondering was in order in her opinion. Maybe finding a view port and looking out at the stars again.

------------- Lt Cmdr Kristiana Petrova Executive Officer USS Pegasus "My sig is STILL bigger than Caelen's"


Lt. JG Magdalena 'Maggie' Deacon Displaced Diplomat