RP Narrative: Alternate Timelines & Strawberry Cake (211230)

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Poison Toocool
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RP Narrative: Alternate Timelines & Strawberry Cake (211230)

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Poison Toocool
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CHARACTERS:

Evelyn Rieko, Retired (Starfleet Reserves)
James T Hode, Retired (Starfleet Reserves) ((Poison Toocool))

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Poison Toocool
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220101.1214

RP NARRATIVE
===========


Evelyn Rieko-Hode sipped her tea and looked over the rim at Jim. It had been three days since he awoke with this strange amnesia. He remembered people and places but not the events and occurrences that had taken place the last 2 years. That is so strange. She nor Dr. Remick had found the cause yet, but the doctor had sent her some news this morning. She sighed, she wanted things back the way they were before Tuesday morning. Back to normal. She wanted to laugh and kiss Jim and sit in his lap and enjoy their life together the way they had before. Cook dinners together, play chess, and go sailing together, feeling the sea spray in their faces and the wind in their hair. She lowered her cup and smiled at Jim, "Darling, you know Dr. Remick suggested we continue to do things we did before this happened and that maybe it will help in your recovery. The doctor and I both are working to find out what happened.”

James T Hode sat in the sitting room in Sandown Cottage. A tea tray was on the table, along with a large cake. He still felt as though he was in a dream. He was not in the habit of overindulging, but this situation was so strange and unreal, he found himself eating more than usual. He helped himself to a large slice of cake, chewing thoughtfully while Evelyn sat on the couch opposite and drank her tea. It felt awkward. He… or… his counterpart in… this world or this time.. Would probably be snuggled up next to her and feeding her cake. He looked to her face as she spoke. “I don’t… how can I do things the way we did? I don’t remember anything.” He put the plate down on his knee. “I agree that a medical examination is useful, but I think we need to be looking at this through the lens of science. Was there a solar flare or other spatial disturbance the night I arrived? Is my DNA an exact match to the.. Jim who was here before me? Have any other incidences of this type been reported?”

Evelyn frowned, listening to Jim, and said, "I'm not sure there was a Jim that was here before you. You said you are married to the queen of Cronon, but I'm not sure if that's fact or some type of illusion. We have been looking at the physical possibilities, but it could be psychological..." She looked down at her cup… avoiding his gaze. Then said, "Dr. Remick and I are not sure what the cause is. Dr. Remick’s tests show you are in great physical condition. I did check the atmosphere and the space up to a light year away. Nothing in that probe showed a solar flare or anything unusual that night or early Tuesday morning."

“I really hate this,” Jim said. “I hate feeling like a stranger in my own home. Everything is familiar and yet it’s like a faded memory.” He put the fork on the cake plate and ran his fingers through his hair.. “I don’t… I don’t want to hurt you, Evelyn. If I lived another life and it was with you, that is… something I would cherish. It’s just… it’s not the life of this Jim.” He put his plate on the table and sat back with a sigh. “I feel confused because I don’t remember. I keep thinking I should be able to remember. But… the thing is, I DO remember. I just remember something else.”

Evelyn felt Jim's anguish, she knew this was tormenting him and that tormented her. She had always been empathic, especially with those she loved. She wished she could make everything okay the way she'd promised. "Jim, it's only been three days, give me more time and I will find out what this is all about, and help you as I promised.” She had some news from Dr. Remick but she did not want to tell Jim anything yet, not until she did more research and could confirm things. She felt his anguish, and tried to lift his spirit by changing the subject for a moment. She tried to smile and asked, "Jim, did you like the cake? I made it!" She really did smile then. "I found an old recipe in one of your family's books… and I used it and it came out great I would say." She laughed a little. “I used the strawberries from the garden out back the same way I imagine your ancestor did. I can imagine one of your ancestors so long ago... picking strawberries and making a cake and me here doing it the same way centuries later instead of replicating one. I wonder what it was really like back then.” Her gaze went around the sitting room. Your family has kept the estate and this cottage sort of like a time capsule in a way, with many items from many different time periods.There’s furniture from so many time periods, and items as far back as the 15th century up to today! I love it here at the cottage, darling. It's so cozy here with you. This recipe is from 1896, can you believe that?" She cut a small slice of the cake for herself, ate a piece and said, “Mmmm, it’s delicious too!”

Jim heard the concern in her voice. “I know you’re doing everything to help me,” he said gently. “Yes, I enjoyed the cake. Probably too much,” he tried to lighten the mood. “This was my favourite place to be at home. It is cozy.” He stared at the fire for a few moments. All of this made no sense. He could feel his heart responding to this cottage, to the place he was born and raised. And to her. But this couldn't be real.. “I was a starship captain… there are many forces in the universe we have yet to understand. I have time travelled, I have experienced the oddness of the Nekrit Expanse and other phenomena. I recall the logs of Jean Luc Picard, and his trip into a memory that was initiated by an alien device. I can assure you, there was no kind of device near me. I fell asleep in my bed on the planet Cronon in the Delta Quadrant, and woke up in my bed here, on Earth, in the Alpha Quadrant. I cannot imagine any sort of entity or device that would have that kind of power.”

Evelyn: “Yes darling, having been starfleet officers serving on starships we have seen and experienced many unusual things, some things we thought were impossible we found to be possible. At one time no one believed in time travel, and farther back many believed the earth was flat. So you are right. The reason you are here and the solution to your situation may not fit into a neat hypothesis and it’s probably not caused by a physical or psychological ailment.” She shook her head, "I have to accept the possibility that you really don't belong here.That this probably is a case of time travel. It’s possible everything you remember is true. Maybe someone went back in time and caused things to change.” She paused, tilting her head and looking at him, then continued, “but why would you remember your true timeline and not just accept everything as it is? That leads me to believe this change would have to be somehow centered around you… maybe you are the catalyst." She shook her head. Now she felt like she needed a hug, but doubted she would receive one from this Jim Hode... but… she placed her cake plate on the table, looked to Jim and said, “I need a hug."

Jim looked at her as she spoke. It was clear she understood that he was not meant to be here. He could only imagine how difficult it was for her to accept. “If I am the catalyst, I can’t imagine how.” She asked for a hug, he hesitated for a moment and then moved to the couch, putting an arm around her. “The hardest thing about all this is the thought that I am hurting you each time I talk about what’s happened,” he said softly. “If I am the catalyst, that means we need to go over everything I do remember from when I saw you at Pinastri until the point I woke up here.” She felt warm in his arms and he wished he could be her Jim. But he wasn’t. He was Araina’s Jim. Or was he?

Evelyn Rieko-Hode "Jim, it feels so good in your arms. I've missed this the last few days. I’ve missed our closeness and fun, but we do have a serious problem to solve. Yes, we must go over everything you've done and everyone you've interacted with since leaving Pinastri... in your timeline. So, you said goodbye to me in your timeline,” she smiled and said, "that's not nice… and then you went back to Cronon." She sighed loudly, "Time travel and timeline puzzles can be very complicated. This is not going to be easy."

Jim: “One of the problems, then, is that there will be no record of me leaving Pinastri on the date I recall saying goodbye. Perhaps… perhaps an idea might be to try to ascertain where our respective memories diverge. Is it as far back as the mission to Cronon and Tramlu with the Durant? You were my XO and I was assigned to the Durant during Rear Admiral’s year at Starfleet Academy. Our mission was to assist in negotiating a peace between the two worlds. Do you remember that much?”

Evelyn: “No darling, there was no mission to Cronon and Tramlu for the Durant. The USS Yellowstone was assigned that mission after you declined. I remember I was your XO and we were on the Durant. You did receive communication from Starfleet giving you the assignment but you asked permission to decline and it was granted. Let's think... Do you remember the mission when we were attacked by the Breen? We helped a bynar ship and the Breen came in and attacked."

Jim shook his head. “I declined a mission? I do not recall that at all. A binar ship and the Breen? Ah…. yes, that rings a bell. So… I never went to Cronon in this timeline. I never met the Queen..” Never met her, never fell in love with her, never left his Starfleet career to marry her… “Anything happen during that Breen mission that could explain this? We could go over the logs?”

Evelyn: "Yes, let's go over the logs!" She reached for her PADD on the end table next to the sofa, “Jim I feel excited about finding a possible path to getting everything straightened out the way it should be… should be... and then what will happen here? You will say goodbye to me at Pinastri. It seems this is the corrupted timeline we’re in now, and once we stop whatever happened to change our true history… our destiny, things should go back to the way they were, the way they should be? You with… Araina… me… where? Doing what? What am I doing in your timeline? Am I an Ambassador, or a botanist as I am now? Am I also married to someone else?" She ran her fingers through her hair feeling sad and uncertain.

Jim fought the urge to lace his fingers in her hair. “In my timeline, I was recalled to Pinastri because of a Task Force. We were attacked by the Borg and a kind of Borg called the Bech. When that battle was over, you and I met at the Colony… and said goodbye. I returned to Cronon. As far as I know… you were single when I left and that wasn’t too long ago.” He felt sad at the idea she was alone but also sort of glad as well. Not fair to feel that way. He had had to let her go. “It was… it was hard to say goodbye to you.”

Evelyn gazed into his eyes with a sad smile and said, "You should never say goodbye to me." She pressed her lips to his briefly… feeling that thrill for that moment, then leaning back against him she said, "What about my work? Am I still the First Officer on the Durant or a botanist as I am now or something else?"

Jim almost drew back from her kiss, but was conscious, at the same time, that in this timeline, he was her husband and her actions were natural. IF he was able to return to his own timeline, would he remember this? Would he have to tell Araina he held someone else and kissed them? "You are not the First Officer on the Durant," he said. "You're the Commanding Officer."

Evelyn sat up suddenly and looked at Jim, "That's awesome! I'm the Commanding Officer of the Durant." She felt a little giddy for a moment and said " Well that is at least one thing I like about your timeline." She laughed, but then her expression was serious as she said, “but I'd rather have you, than command of the Durant… if I had a choice. I don't think we have a choice, do we? We have to find that moment in time when things changed and stop it from happening, and correct the timeline.” She paused, thinking, and said "Darling, before we get back to work retracing our memories, I wanted to tell you I received a message from your Aunt Margaret this morning. We talked about our gardens, the cottage, Starfleet, and about your career a bit, and she wants us to visit her soon. I think it may be good for you to see her… but I'm not sure. I didn't tell her about your... condition yet. What do you think?"

Jim looked at her with astonishment. "My... Aunt? You... talked with Aunt Maggie?" A thrill of strange vibration ran through him. "She is... she died two years ago! How can this be?"

=^=
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Evelyn Rieko
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