Star Trek: It Is Always Darkest
(© Robert Denham)
In memory of Ben Buchmelter, 1973-2014.
I have been, and always shall be, his friend.
"...he taught me that how we face death is at least as important a how we face life. Of my friend, I can only say this: of all the souls I have encountered in my travels, his was the most...human."--Admiral James T. Kirk, "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan"
rose shortly before dawn, showered and dressed in the simple black and
charcoal-gray robes so common to elderly Vulcans.
had already, some days before, packed up his belongings, sorting a few into a
smallish bag; those relatively few items which he had chosen to take on this,
what he knew would, for better or worse, be his final journey.
had closed out his home and his affairs on New Vulcan and now stood for the
last time on the front stoop of his unostentatious hillside abode, overlooking
the growing vista of New Shi’kahr. A few other new homes had sprung up as well,
on this small development; some were, as yet, uninhabited.
capitol city of the new home of the Vulcan people sprawled below him, the
sounds of construction and growth diffusely audible, even from this distance.
These sounds of heavy construction drifted up to him from the valley below, as
the Starfleet Corps of Engineers and a score of private construction companies
cooperated to give the benighted Vulcans a new homeworld. Initial construction
here should be finished within the next two years.
smiled softly, in the Vulcan fashion, and sighed. He was no longer needed,
here, he knew, and understood that he could move on now, without incident. He
walked to the street, where his requested transport vehicle, a hovercar,
driver, a young Andorian dressed in Starfleet garb, took his bag and opened the
door for him. Spock, gathering his robes, entered the vehicle and situated
himself as the driver closed the door behind him.
they drove away, headed through the narrow, rough streets, Spock allowed his
mind to drift a bit.
the extended period following the "Nero Event", as it had come to be called,
Spock, now sometimes known as ‘Elder Spock’ as a means for others to
differentiate between the two, had been busy with the effort of finding a
suitable new home world for what remained of the Vulcan people, and using his
extensive aptitude for science in assisting in the orderly settling of the
refugees, and in maintaining the Vulcans’ future as a viable race.
The harsh desert world they had chosen, JCSOG-7 was re-designated, naturally,
"New Vulcan". Efforts were ongoing, preparing that world for proper settlement.
was not Vulcan, of course, but it would do. It would have to. The size,
temperature and overall environment were close enough for comfort. Future
generations would adapt nicely, he felt. Approximately 10,000 Vulcans had directly survived the catastrophe, having
escaped the planet before its destruction. Though Starfleet itself was not
exactly suffused with Vulcans, there were a few hundred, and as random chance
would have it, there were somewhat more than a handful of them off-world,
posted at Starbases, science colonies and other outposts around the Federation.
had gone out, and those Vulcans had come en masse to Earth, where the
Federation’s rescue project was to be centered. Even Sybok, his rebellious, hedonistic—by Vulcan standards, at any rate—older
half-brother, had heeded the call, and had returned to do his duty.
reunion of the sons of Sarek was an awkward one, at best. Nontheless, Sybok had
seemingly had the least trouble of any other Vulcan, in the acceptance of the
two Spocks; it was, after all, a temporal paradox which was, in itself,
illogical. Sybok, of course, all but rejected the Vulcan philosophy of strict
logic, and so was somewhat more comfortable with the idea than most.
was much optimism that these, combined with the relative few which had managed
to directly escape their planet’s destruction, would be enough to create a
viable gene pool. The crew of the USS INTREPID, the "Vulcan Starship" crewed by most of the
Vulcan members of Starfleet, was recalled from an extended survey mission to a
remote region well outside of Federation-claimed space.
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