Trees In A Storm

OFF: Challenge post time, boys and girls~


When Zazi was very young, she and her family were living on the coast and were bombarded by a massive hurricane. They had hid down in the cellar, the wind whipping and whirling and making the doors clatter but not open. The lock prevented that, at least.

Zazi had hid her small face into her mother's neck, shaking horrendously. "It's so loud!" she cried out, as her mother rocked her gently.

"I know, dear, I know. It's alright...the best way to make it through a disaster is to relax and let it pull you through," her mother mumbled, although Zazi never knew if she was talking to Zazi or herself.

The wind whipping around them, the stone glowing bright as chunks of land started to separate under their feet, brought back her mother's words. Despite that, she still screamed and tried to reach out to grab Aji, both of them lifting up slowly in the bright blue light.

"AJI! WHAT'S GOING ON-AJI!" She screamed as the wind whipped her away, making her feel like a doll picked up by a careless toddler.

She tried to remember to relax, the smack to the ground would no doubt kill her, but maybe some kind of luck would shine down on her and Aji, maybe-

The world went black.


Zazi jerked awake with a gasp, nearly bashing heads with a strange man leaning over her. He had an odd blue shirt and pants, and she stared at him with wide eyes as he merely pulled out a little steel looking...thing to wave in her direction. "It is wonderful to see you awake, Doctor."

Zazi gulped, her hands shaking as they kept her up, breathing faster. "Who th-the hell are you-stop waving that at me!" She slapped at his hand, nearly falling back but managing to yank herself to the wall, glaring at him as she panted.

The man merely raised a perfectly arched eyebrow-like wow, he was on point with it-before putting away the steel thing. "...I see you are still suffering side effects. You do not know me."

Zazi let out a rough laugh. "Ya can't tell me anything new, fella."

"My name is Stok. I am the CMO of my ship, as you are."

"The what?" CMO? Zazi didn't know what that meant. Ship? Like the big things that came into port for trade? He didn't have the appearance of a tradesman...more of a merchant that paid others to do his job.

Stok let out a low sigh, as if annoyed. "Chief Medical Officer."

"I dunno nothing about that, where's Aji?!" She looked around wildly, but all she could see were very weird things like windows with pictures on them and Stok.

Stok blinked. "I presume she was with you?"

Zazi glared at him, her hand digging into the metal wall behind her in annoyance. "Not one for the up and up are ya?"

Stok ignored the jab as he nodded. "Yes, I do believe she may already be up and going, you all need to get your ship back into working order and leave this quadrant. It is now going under a Red Alert sector until we are able to understand what the nebula is and how to stop it or contain it."

Zazi panted, staring at him in the quietness for a moment. "...I have no idea what you're sayin'."

Stok merely shook his head, although he took a step closer to her, kneeling down and making her jump. "I see this is getting us nowhere. Here, this shall be easier."

He reached out to her, but quick as a whip she grabbed the weird...gun looking thing on his hip, scrambling back as she aimed it at him. "Don't you move! I-I'll find a way to use this! If I gotta beat your damn head in!"

Stok sighed again, holding his hands up slowly. "Of course. But I must inform you that the longer we take, the more of the crew that is liable to perish. We have already had to take your Klingon...friend off the life support as his organs failed, and surprisingly your nurse, Jenny was it? Yes, she passed as soon as we attempted to set her up on life support."

Zazi chocked, the hand holding the gun shaking sharply now. "You shut up. Don't you say her name!"

Stok raised his eyebrow, watching her hand, his eyes trailing up to her face. "...Jenny?"

"YOU SHUT UP!" she shouted, but she didn't have it in her to shoot him. She never had, of course, her abilities lied in physical force or sometimes using a high heel to beat someone away, never a pistol or...whatever this was.

She could feel the tears trailing down her face as she let out a broken sob, his hand gripping the gun and lowering as she lowered her head. "Don't say her name...too much fer now...just, take me to Aji, so we can get outta here..."

Stok sighed once more. She sure was growing tired of that noise. "I do apologize for this, but it is necessary."

"Wha-" and then his hand was on her face, cupping her temple and jaw, as if he was about to pull her into a kiss. Out she went, like a light.


Zazi slowly opened her eyes, staring at the ceiling. Beeping machines, a scratchy blanket under her fingers, a semi soft bed under her back. She slowly sat up, peeling off the little sticker that was attached to her arm.

She slowly made her way to a small panel, tapping it and it opened, revealing extra medical uniforms. She undid the laces of her corset, flinging it onto the bed as she pulled on the shirt, her hand smoothing down the front to pause at her stomach before she slipped off the long skirt.

She replaced it with a pair of black pants, and then she turned, and walked to a small office with its door open, leaning against the doorway's edge.

Stok didn't even look up as he tapped on his PADD. "You did not take as long as predicted."

"I should have you reported," she replied, her arms crossed, staring at him, devoid of any feelings in her sharp gaze.

Stok shrugged in return, gliding his finger on the PADD before tapping again. "You should, perhaps. However, it was necessary and logical in order to trip your memories into resetting themselves as the primary ones."

Zazi stared at him, her fingers tapping at her bicep slowly. "My head feels like someone took an old style steel wool and wrapped it up inside it with salt."

"An...apt description."

"...I suppose I should thank you, all the same. I'm hard headed enough without being...that." She winced.

Stok paused in his tapping, slowly looking up at her with a serious look. "Yes. You do know about-"

"It's my-" she bit her tongue to prevent the colorful curse escaping, she never cursed...or smoked, but man did she want a cigarette right now. She took a slow breath. "It's my body. I know exactly what is happening with me, at all times."

"Indeed. You know as well as I that a genetics test will be required."

Zazi scoffed, looking away. "Human won't even be considered. It's impossible, it's-"

"Sadly, I may have to argue." He placed the PADD down, standing up. "The nebula has...effects that we still do not understand."

Zazi stared at him, letting out another scoff. "I cannot believe what I'm hearing. You're a doctor, well as I am, you and I both know that Andorians and Humans are impossible to produce children without...well, medical intervention! Medical intervention that didn't exist in that world!"

Stok nodded. "Then other Andorians. But would it not be safer to be assured than have to worry about a chance of a fatal pregnancy?"

...he had a point. And she hated him for it. She grit her teeth. The 'memories' really didn't let her know who was the other parent, they were all a wash, a smear of a painting, that finally came together the day Zazi woke up with the idea to see Detective Avakhon.

"...Right now we need to leave."

"Agreed." Stok slowly offered his arm out to her. "I will find your captain and this...Aji for you, so long as you do not deny the help."

Was she weak for accepting it? For looping her arm with his, leaning on him like one would attached onto a tree in the middle of a storm in an effort not to blow away?

She took his arm, and he said nothing, and together they exited the medbay, leaving unspoken feelings and frustrations and fears to remain at rest...for now.

Lieutenant Commander Zazi Sh'viakrik
Chief Medical Officer
USS Endeavor NCC-9819

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