Something Different

Disclaimer: TPTB own Captain Kathryn Janeway and Commander Chakotay – good thing BeckyA owns KJ and C from uni#4 – at least she lets me play with them!

This is an A/U to BeckyA’s story Reflections in the Mirror of Time and Space: the couple from uni#4 were so dear to me I almost couldn’t stand the fact I knew she was going to separate them.

~ * ~ * ~

Serving on the Fleet’s Flagship was becoming a less than invigorating experience. She’d been a science officer for 3 years now ever since her husband had died at Wolf 359. Lt Cdr Kathryn Janeway once had a promising career, wearing the command red with appropriate pride. According to her longtime mentor she would probably only have to serve once as a Second Officer before being promoted to full Commander. Then she’d be right on track as First Officer before finally accepting her own Command of a ship as its Captain.

Unfortunately Adm Paris hadn’t counted on the Borg to quickly destroy her life – personal as well as professional. She was one of the senior officers on the USS Tolstoy when the epic battle with the Borg broke out. How she survived still remains a mystery. One of only two people to live from a crew of 250, her co-survivor was Lt j.g. Tuvok – a Vulcan. Half of the crew had been assimilated, the other half was dead before the Borg saw fit to take over the vessel. One of the casualties was her husband of 6months, Lt Cdr Justin Tighe. Starfleet and the Federation were in complete chaos after the war, and survivors were not counseled they way they should have been. The new motto was “forget and get on with your life.” So it was not immediately noticed when Kathryn Janeway changed her career back to Science, her first love. Picking up where she left off at the Academy, she was once out amongst the stars again, this time as one of numerous science officers aboard the USS Enterprise-D. After 3 years she still experienced frequent nightmares, but with a less stressful position her life finally began to take shape again.

~ * ~ * ~

Two weeks ago she had accidentally seen a subspace message that was to change her life once more. A remote colony, fairly close to the Neutral Zone, was looking for a senior science officer to help set up a new, more modern science lab and research station. It seemed the planet’s resident scientist was involved in so many projects, none of them too specific, that he needed a partner to organize projects and lead several new setups as well.

Having had too little time to work on things that really held her interest, Kathryn was fast becoming demotivated in performing her duties, not to mention the fact life aboard a starship had lost its appeal.

Ever since she was a young girl, she had imagined living amongst the stars, but they were now the source of her deep-rooted misery.

After requesting more information, she set up a meeting with the ship’s personnel officer, Cdr William Riker.

After Wolf 359 he and Lt Tuvok were her closest friends. Will understood her reasons for wanting to leave and pursue this new path in her life. He made sure all was arranged accordingly and even managed to get the Enterprise to escort her to the planet, instead of forcing her to catch a number of transports aboard inferior vessels.

~ * ~ * ~

The hum of the transporter still took her breath away. She could almost feel each one of her molecules separate from another only to reappear as a complete human being a mere second later. The transport and communications office looked modern enough. Once her transfer was made official, Kathryn had read up on Trebus: a planet now inhabited by descendants of the Native Americans of Earth. These people tried to live according to their old ways, without giving up on the most basic of modern conveniences. Her mother had laughed at her plans. She and her sister Phoebe even set a bet on how long Kathryn would stay on the planet. According to them she didn’t have it in her to “rough it.” Kathryn thought she’d be alright, as long as there was a replicator nearby, preferably in her house.

The officials of Trebus, the planet’s elders, had assured her she would get her own house – a lodge, but because the Enterprise had brought her to the colony sooner than expected, it wasn’t quite ready yet. For the time being she would stay at Kolopak’s house. In one of her communiques with one of the elders, she had gotten the impression that even though Kolopak was a widely respected member of the community, his unorthodox ideas were not always appreciated. She even understood that his son did not approve of his father’s ways.

~ * ~ * ~

Kathryn was glad she would stay with Kolopak and his family for the time being. The idea of a new environment was scary enough without feeling as if you’d loose your way without even knowing you did so.

She stepped outside and saw a small village lit by only a few street lanterns and the light of a waning moon. The sky was clear enough for her to see the carpet of stars above her.

Originally she was to transport to the planet early in the morning, but the Enterprise had been called away for a diplomatic mission, so here she was, late in the evening all alone at a transport station in a strange village on a strange planet.

~ * ~ * ~

“Miss Janeway?”

She looked up at the voice, and only now did she see the tall stranger standing in front of her.

“Yes, I am Lt Cdr Janeway.”

“Welcome to Trebus, Miss Janeway. I am Chakotay, son of Kolopak.”