Result: detention

Alathea looked from Chakotay to Neelix. They seemed like they might come to blows. Is this why the Captain called her here? She didn’t suffer from that effect from the Memorial. She had it, but it was so easy to control as if it were just another memory from her past lives. She had worse ones.

“May I say something?” Alathea asked.

Captain nodded in her direction. “Go ahead,” while Chakotay and Neelix still stared at each other.

“The reason I didn’t suffer as much as you guys is simple. I’ve seen atrocities. Almost in every one of my last ten lives.”

“So you understand why such things should not be forgotten,” Neelix said.

“Not forgotten, correct. But not relived,” she stared at Neelix. “Living through atrocity doesn’t stop it from repeating.”

Alathea drew circles with her finger on the table. “Sometimes I wonder, do people end up getting ideas from previous atrocities to re-commit them?”

“But you said you’ve seen atrocity!” Neelix whined.

“Yes, and I’ve seen what happens after. I’ve seen people like you raising children, telling them about atrocity and how the others who committed atrocity are evil. It ends up the same—children commit atrocity again. Remembering atrocity is not a solution. The hurt of going through one or even just seeing one overpowers everything.”

“That’s what I say!” Chakotay added.

“Yes,” Tom nodded, exchanging a glance with nodding Kim.

“Did you see anything that might indicate effective prevention of such atrocities?” Tuvok asked.

Alathea continued drawing circles with her fingers in front of her. “Not in the Empire.” She lifted her head and met Tuvok’s eyes. “But I saw it here among you.”

“Now you have me interested,” the Captain said.

“There is one commonality among all perpetrators of atrocities. They always consider the victims less than them. To prepare people to commit atrocities, there are years of propaganda going into the effort before they kill the first person. There is brainwashing telling them that the victims are worthless, a waste of space, and that the existence of those victims makes perpetrators’ lives worse. Gruesome stories are shared. I remember one such story, in the conflict between the two sides that didn’t completely share their religion. People on one side said that the other side was roasting live children on a spit. And they used this story as an excuse to commit an equally gruesome crime where they ended up cutting prisoners alive with a tool usually used for cutting wood.” Alathea forced a swallow through her closed throat. The screams and pleas for mercy echoed in her head.

“You’ve seen that?” Captain asked in a gentle voice.

Alathea nodded, snapped her eyes open, and looked around the room. Captain, Tuvok, and Chakotay listened to her, while Neelix shook his head. Alathea focused on the Captain. She was the one who needed to hear the truth.

“The conflict on that planet lasted for hundreds of years. Each time, aggressors thought the victims were sub-human. And often, aggression would repeat in cycles, with aggressors and victims exchanging places, or victims going somewhere else and committing similar atrocities against another group of humans. Aggression begot aggression. A never-ending cycle. I never saw a solution until I met you guys.”

“My people were never aggressors! We suffered. My whole family, my sister, everyone, just died, turned into a cloud of organic molecules,” Neelix snarled.

Alathea tilted her head. “And you wish revenge? And you think other creatures, similar to your aggressors, cannot be trusted?”

“No! My family died, civilians! No one should suffer the same destiny. A bit of inconvenience should not stop us from learning the truth.” He got up, leaning at the table towards Alathea.

“I agree, no one should suffer the same destiny. I just do not agree that inducing trauma would help. I’ve seen that traumatized people react differently. Some are like you. But some turn into beasts that just wish to spread the pain. They even start enjoying torturing others.”

Tuvok nodded. “You are referring to a common side effect of trauma in humans. For almost every abuser, we can find that they were a victim of some kind of abuse.”

Alathea nodded. “Yes.”

“You said that you saw a solution among us?” Captain said.

Alathea put both her hands relaxed in front of her. “Yes. You treat everyone as worthy, as equal. You include in such behavior even your enemies. You treat everyone as if they are valuable. That’s what was always missing from every encounter and society that ended up having an atrocity. If we wish to prevent future atrocities, we have to spread that around. Teach everyone to treat one another as equal, good, valuable.”

Neelix stood up, pushing the chair away with the force of his movement. “Talaxians considered no one else bad.”

“Then why were you in the war?”

Neelix blinked. “Because others attacked us.”

“Did they consider you worthy and equal?”

Neelix opened his mouth, his eyes glued to Alathea’s, and then his anger dissipated. “No. They never did.”

Captain nodded. “Thank you all.”

Alathea nodded and left without listening. She couldn’t wait to rush back to the holodeck to run more simulations. Maybe that would silence the screams.


It worked. The screams stopped after the second simulation. She continued running simulations, varying parameters just a bit, as Seven instructed her. At one point, Seven left. Voyager got to another planet. But Alathea didn’t want to stop working. If she did, the screams could come back.

She didn’t even stop to sleep. Neelix would bring her food from time to time. But she always refused to speak with him. He was here now, with a plate full of finger food. The kind she requested last time. The kind that didn’t require her to stop her work.

She was in the cantine when the ship shook.

“What was that?”

“They are trying to free Seven and Tuvok,” Neelix answered.


“Ah, it is a long story. The planet has an entertainment center where they are showing live fights. The people who are providing entertainment kidnapped Seven and Tuvok. Seven is fighting right now. We found out that they keep the fighters on the heavily fortified ship, and we will have to do battle with them before we can get our people out.” He pushed the plate full of food towards her.

“Seven is kidnapped?” She accepted the plate.

“Yes. A few days ago.”

“Why no one told me?”

“You are not friendly towards people.”

“She needs to be helped.” Alathea pushed the plate back to Neelix and headed towards the bridge.

“Chakotay is working on it,” Neelix yelled after her, his voice blessedly cutting out as soon as the door closed.


Alathea entered the bridge, and the first thing that grabbed her attention was the humongous ship on the screen. It was almost as big as that generation ship Varro had. She glanced across the bridge, taking in all the crew immersed in battle.

“Direct hit to their aft shield generators,” B’Lana said.

“Still no sign of Seven, but I’ve got a lock on Tuvok,” Harry said.

“Beam him to Sick Bay. Keep targeting those generators,” Chakotay said.

“Transport complete,” Harry said.

“Shields down 40%. 32%. Shields are down,” B’Lana counted down.

Alathea grabbed the rail, steadying herself against the ship jolting. It wasn’t hard to figure out what was going on. She focused on Chakotay in front of her, catching his glance for a moment.

“You’re an idiot.” She didn’t mince her words.

But Chakotay ignored her. “Evasive maneuvers.” He sat down in a chair. “Harry?”

“Still can’t get a lock.”

“Should I get us out of here before they knock out our propulsion?” Tom said.

“Not yet. If we can’t beam her out, maybe we can shut down the transmission,” Chakotay said.

Alathea snorted. “That should be the first thing for you to do.”

“If nobody’s watching, then why continue the fight?” said Tom.

He was so naïve. Because the fighters are their money, and we are a nuisance.

“Start targeting their signal generators,” Chakotay said.

“Hull breach on Deck 11,” said Harry.

“Seal it.”

“Chakotay, for the love of god, retreat and rethink this. You’re behaving like a toddler!” Alathea said. “There are better ways to solve this.”

Chakotay glanced towards her. “If you do not shut up, I will remove you from the bridge.”

Another jolt of the ship.

“We’ve lost weapons,” B’Lana said.

“Another vessel is approaching,” Tom said.

“Great. Now they are bringing in reinforcements,” B’Lana said.

“No, this one’s on our side,” Tom said. “It’s the Delta Flyer.”

Alathea shook her head. Another mosquito is joining the fight. Who would’ve thought that she’d die in this ridiculous rescue attempt?

“Good to see you, Captain,” Chakotay said.

And Alathea had to agree with him.

“Nothing like getting back to work after a long vacation,” the captain’s voice came through the communicators.

“We need you to target their signal generators,” Chakotay said.

Alathea took a big breath. He is continuing with his stupidity.

“Understood,” the Captain said.

“Huh?” Alathea could not stop the involuntary sound. She was expecting the captain to beam over and take over from this stupid asshole and save them. But she joined in!

“They reduced power to their force fields,” Harry said. “I’ve got two life signs in there — Seven and a Hirogen — but I can’t get an individual lock.”

“Transport them both if you have to,” Chakotay said, rushing to Tom’s console. “Tom?”

“Aye, sir.” Tom got up and left the bridge.

Alathea mumbled, “WTF? He is the best pilot; we need him to escape.” How many silly mistakes would this man make?


This time, the captain didn’t invite her to sit down. She stood in front of her desk, glancing from Alathea to Chakotay. Both were staring at her with serious expressions. She was about to be reprimanded. Fear blossomed within her. With Bene Gesserit, this kind of situation usually led to painful punishment. And this would be the first time she would experience punishment here.

“I think you know why I called you here.”

Another glance to Chakotay, “I can guess. But I do not know what exactly you will point out as wrong behavior.”

Chakotay leaned forward, “You were interfering with my command all during the attack, distracting me and endangering not only Seven and Tuvok but the whole ship.”

Alathea shook her head. “No. That’s not what happened. You rushed to attack the ship, not even considering alternatives. If the captain were there, she would consult with the crew before deciding. You didn’t even try. No one ever told me what was going on.”

“There was nothing to consult about. We had people to rescue.”

The captain lifted her hand. “Let her speak.” She turned towards Alathea. “So, what would be your suggestion?”

“With an enemy who has such a better ship, the action is obvious. Infiltrate and do sabotage from inside.” Alathea pointed to Chakotay. “What he did was what a toddler does, banging on the parents, hoping to get what it wants.”

“We do not have people trained to go behind lines and sabotage heavily armed and heavily populated ships.”

Alathea laughed. “You do. You have an expert in that area. Me. They trained me my whole life to infiltrate the powerful enemy stronghold and rescue hostages. My entire existence is because of such a task. And I’m here for you to use my skills.”

“Did you succeed in your mission?” Chakotay asked.

“Yes. I freed millions of hostages. The ones I lost were because of a trigger-happy duke. You were extremely lucky that the captain came into play and helped. Otherwise, neither of us would be here to talk about this.”

“I freed 100% of my hostages. The mission was a success.”

“Don’t you guys ever evaluate past missions and see what we could do better?”

Captain nodded. “I do. That’s a helpful tool in improving performance. And in that light, I have to point out that you made a mistake. Your behavior on the bridge was disruptive, and you introduced an element of reckless danger to the mission. Something like that should not happen again. When a commanding officer decides, all of us, including you, should follow that decision.”

“Huh?” Alathea waved her arms. “Even when that decision is stupid?”

“Even then.”

Speechless, Alathea shook her head, staring at the Captain.

“In that light, you will be punished. I am resending your replicator privileges for a month. During that time, you will have to stay in your quarters. Dismissed.”

“Will you punish him too? He caused unnecessary damage to the ship, slowing us down.”


Alathea stared at Captain’s steel eyes for a while, then turned and left. The punishment seemed rather inconsequential to her; replicator privileges meant little when she barely used them for anything beyond ship repairs. But being confined to her quarters for a month was a problem. The screams might return.


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