Title: The Sands of Time
Fandom(s): Star Trek XI, DOOM, Terminator Salvation
Disclaimer: Okay, if I owned ANY of these (other than on DVD) would I be writing this? I think not.
Warnings: MASSIVE CROSSOVERNESS, AU, OOCness, m/m relations, language, violence
Summary: Kyle Reese, as a Resistance fighter, was practically made sterile due to nuclear radiation so had to become the test subject for a drug that would regenerate radiation damaged tissue… and as such became essentially immortalized. In the year 2046, he met a former Marine codenamed Reaper, recently fired from the RRTS after the massacre of the UAC base on Mars and they formed an unbreakable bond. Centuries pass and face a new future, a new set of lives, in Space as Starfleet officers. Will their bond survive the test of space travel and exploration with Starfleet?
PART SIX - MISSION START
PART ONE - THE LAB
The next morning certainly wasn’t easy for either but somehow both Kyle and John were able to get up and get dressed in what they needed for the day without looking at each other. The touches were light and lingering, as if they were comforting each other with them, but as soon as their uniforms were on, their hair done properly and their appropriate weapons strapped to their sides any pretenses of the couple they were disappeared, leaving behind only two hardened soldiers facing an unknown battle. Leonard had to leave first to head to Sickbay to gather the supplies he needed while Pavel snuck out to go back to his room and pack what little he had that could be of use. He hadn’t been able to take his best guns with him but he had a few of the smaller pistols with him and he was actually required to carry a few things in a small bag with him so they were easily hidden amongst his other supplies. Depending on what they were facing, having the back-up weapons might not, in and of itself be a bad idea.
But the persona of Pavel Chekov wouldn’t exactly be the kind of guy who would go into a situation like this expecting a war zone. If anything, the kid would be thinking along the lines of doing his simple job, which meant collecting the data from the base the Russians were at and acting as a translator in place of Uhura should they find the scientists. He supposed that part came from a combination of having a clue what the damned scientists were talking about above and beyond the actually Russian they would be speaking in. On days like this, Kyle was glad for his years upon years of studying this shit and keeping an eye on the advancing technologies to make sure the Machines never rose again.
By the time Kyle got to the transporter room, everyone set to go on the mission was there and waiting on the captain and doctor. Why the hell his nickname was “Bones” no one was entirely sure but whatever worked for those two he supposed would have to do. He kind of wished that he would get to see John in his old Marine uniform with the decent sized rifle he used to carry but he knew that chances of that happening were slim. He was a doctor, not a soldier. His hands were meant to heal, not hurt, despite what the last couple of centuries had taught him. Not that a man who could literally put you back together with his own hands wasn’t hot in and of itself and it lead to interesting role playing behind closed doors but it wasn’t quite the same as having a dangerous man succumb to your every need willingly.
With him was the security team that was going to be sent with them, armed as much as any security guy could be in this century and honestly Kyle knew he was the better shot ten times over. These men were good with still targets and the kinds of guns they used allowed for some variation in the shot that would still deliver the lethality of the weapon but nothing in today’s arsenal quite matched the pain, agony and outright effect of an old fashioned pistol or pump-action shot gun. Unfortunately those kinds of guns were considered antiques and considered a barbaric means of war. As far as Kyle was concerned it was unfortunate as pain was a greater deterrent than the threat of being stunned but that might just be his old fashioned way of thinking.
One of the security team said hello and as Pavel he smiled back and shook their hands. The navigator would have no problem with these men so he had to pretend he had no problem with these would be he-men. Honestly, nothing pissed him off more than kids who thought they knew everything, even if, in their mind, he was the kid who was pretending. When these sad saps died he was going to feel sad for moment but only because if they had been given better training they might have survived. Human lives being wasted was always a tragedy, especially as he came from a time when human life was so rare that the birth of a child was considered a cause for massive celebration in that colony.
The sound of the keys being hit for the transporter as Scotty and his transporter specialist calculated the necessary equations to transport them safely to the surface of the planet was a distant sound in the back of Kyle’s head though he was sure if he did pay attention he would easily be able to follow their mathematical processes with ease. He had practically built these computers himself over the years, knew every sound and every failsafe. If he wanted to, he could leave the Enterprise dead in space without ever hitting more than six keys from any computer in the ship. It made him feel a little safer in this machine.
The hydraulic hiss of the doors opening pulled his attention toward the captain and the medical officer that walked in, trying not to let himself check out one man too much. The pants of the men’s uniform were ridiculously tight for the kind of work the crew did but he honestly couldn’t find himself complaining overly much considering the women, in return were wearing dangerously short shirts. Kirk flashed a playful smile at Kyle who played the part and smiled back shyly before he took his position on a pad while McCoy and the captain took theirs. Out of the corner of his eye he saw John’s disproving scowl deepen for a second and immediately set his face in a serious expression but said nothing. If there was a real problem there would a confrontation eventually.
“We ready to go?” The question was a courtesy more than anything. When Jim Kirk was ready to go, everyone else had better be ready or get out of the way.
“Da. I am ready Captain.”
The three security officers answered their affirmatives in their own way.
“Alrighty then. Scotty, if you’re ready.”
There was a thud as the machine was activated and a hum as it warmed up and gathered the energy to do what it needed to do. It wasn’t as if Kyle didn’t understand how the transporters worked but it was still unnerving to know that he was about to be taken apart on an atomic level to be forced by energy onto the planet to be reformed perfectly. The sensation of being pulled apart, thankfully, was painless and it wasn’t long before his vision was filled with the light of the beam itself. He knew that when he would be able to see again it would be after he had reformed planet side and wasn’t too worried about it. He just hoped that it wouldn’t be to a face full of gunfire or incredibly hostile aliens. He was traveling with Jim Kirk on this mission after all.
What was probably only a matter of seconds in reality but what felt like an instant to him, Kyle found himself reformed on the small planet and surrounded by his team members as usual. The first thing he noticed about his surroundings was that they were not inside a building. He could feel the biting cold of literally freezing temperatures and snow covered the grounds was far too reminiscent of his time in the Russian wastelands. No wonder the scientists felt at home here, although it really didn’t help to lend a clue as to why they were even here to begin with. He felt the urge to strip off the bright yellow uniform shit but the black would only stand out more. Perhaps he’d be able to find something worth changing into when they got to the lab. Why hadn’t they been deposited in the lab through? Surely Scotty could manage it.
He heard Kirk sending a signal to the ship about that but he was far more concerned about getting out of this cold. He and John might be able to regenerate themselves but that didn’t mean that the security saps and Kirk would be able to survive in this cold, dressed as they were, for prolonged periods of time. The guy might be a royal pain in the ass, but he was the captain and if there was one thing Kyle really learned over these centuries it was that the leader had to be protected no matter how much of a douche bag he was.
He turned on his tricorder and without adjusting too many of the dials was able to find the way the metals in the soil reacted to the signal. Well that explained why they couldn’t beam in. Fuck his life. He lifted the device and scanned the ground, looking for a hatch of some kind. He found on less than 10 feet from where they reformed. Perfect. At least the computers would be down below and there would probably be something better to wear in these weather conditions to hide them in the white of the snow while they searched for the scientists.
He would likely highly recommend that the security officers stay here under the excuse that they weren’t used to the cold. None of them were aliens from planets that had anything resembling ice and snow and the three of them that were from Earth that had some idea of how to handle cold, well, one was the captain and the other two technically were non-combatants. Well at least they weren’t combatants in the eyes of Starfleet so until he managed to get rid of the red shirts and thereby force himself and Bones into the role of security he couldn’t let it look like he and John had the experience they had.
But instead of letting anyone know what his current plan was, Kyle walked the whole ten feet through some pretty thick snow to get to where his tricorder said the latch was before he let the instrument hang around his shoulders and bent down to move the snow and work on brushing the snow off the latch to reach the frozen door. He knew that the actual metal would likely be cold enough to leave his fingers frostbitten but they had a doctor with them to help him get circulation back in them. Well, a doctor or Kirk if the captain was bold enough to put the moves on him in front of other people.
He had managed to get the majority of the snow off and was working on pulling the frozen metal hatch open before anyone had noticed what he was doing and bothered to offer their help. He thanked the security guys in Russian but he was sure that they understood the gist of it. It took the effort of all three to pull the heavy hatch door open and in that time Kyle was quick to turn the tricorder on again, searching instead for live forms then movement in the room revealed by the hatch. He could vaguely hear Jim’s congratulations and feel the pat on his back but he tried not to let anything show. He had more important things to worry about; like if there was something that was going to kill them was nearby on the surface or hiding in the hatch. He saw nothing but still let the security kids down the hatch first before Kirk and John and he followed them.
A quick survey around the place showed nothing too out of the ordinary to the untrained eye. Everything looked to be still perfectly in place and the machines still ran on idle as if they were waiting for someone to return. The lights didn’t turn on until the hatch was closed and locked behind them and even then a voice that sounded a little too much like the original Skynet started talking, saying hello. Kyle frowned at the electronic sound but had long since gotten used to it over the years he had walked this Earth. Men who lived so far from home needed something to jack off to he supposed if they weren’t willing to fuck each other.
But they were here for more than simply looking around. Turning off his tricorder the former resistance fighter dug through his bags to find the disks that were needed to copy the information to. They felt delicate in his hand but that was all machinery really. He wasn’t strong enough to bend metal like John was but wires and things like disks with software information he was the expert and they folded easily underneath his expertise with computers. He was able to find the main terminal he needed and surged forward, his fingers easily finding where he needed to press to gain access. His behind easily found a seat and slipped on the headset that was connected to the mainframe. “Компьютер, внешний код авторизации 894 - Виктор-Роже-3,” he said, his voice lower and harsher than Pavel’s the wide eyed innocent look of the teenager smothered now by the soldier that never really faded, “Знамя Starfleet Павэль Андреивич Чеков, просящий непосредственную загрузку всей информации исследования как написано научными жителями этого помещения.”
The computer answered him with a soft, almost sing song voice and asked that he insert the disks he needed. Inserting the first one, Kyle’s grey eyes started looking over the other screens that surrounded where he was sitting. He blinked at the Cyrillic he saw on one of the screens. External cameras? He hadn’t seen anything when they had been beamed down initially though that might have looked remotely close to a camera but that might have been hidden by the sheer amount of snow. His long fingers tapped the screen several times, passing through a few menus before he got to the cameras and spread out the screens so that there was one per small monitor. “What have you got?” someone asked behind him, probably either Jim or John but which exactly he really didn’t care to listen for. They would see for themselves in a moment.
“Camera monitors outside ze bunker,” he said as the computer told him that the first disk was full and he was forced to pull his attention away from the monitors to replace the disk, “Looks like vhatever it vas zat scared them off zey saw it coming.” Perhaps once he got the research downloaded he could rewind the footage and see what came after these men. He hoped it wasn’t something too scary.
PART TWO - FINAL SWEEP
It had been a long time since John had surveyed a scene like this for clues but it felt like riding a bike quite honestly so it might as well have been his damned duty to go ahead and do this work for the security buffoons they brought along. Nothing looked like it had been tossed aside as if in a scuffle and there was no trace of blood about the place. There were plenty of heavy winter clothes, designed, no doubt, with the idea of the men needing to step outside for something archaic like a cigarette. He saw goggles and gloves and several weapons stored amongst the winter gear, all in white, that varied from replicas of the early 2000 models to very recent ones. Some he recognized as weapons that Kyle seemed to like but most were foreign to him.
He didn’t touch anything, not directly, although he was pleased to see several small med kits with some pretty standard first aid supplies for this kind of climate. Depending on what it was Kyle saw on his computers -because unlike the rest of the crew he could understand the man when he spoke to the computers and the AI answered back- they might need to take a few of these things with them. Men just didn’t disappear from their laboratories for no reason; that much he knew from personal experience. Yet the sensors and reports had said the planet was empty of all life forms. He hoped that didn’t mean that there were machines running around… He had read the history books and had plenty of accounts from Kyle to know that machines were nothing to be trifled with, especially not in extreme conditions like this.
His sharp senses picked up on a few other things about the place too, things too small that someone without his senses wouldn’t have been able to pick up. He could smell the trace amounts of vodka about the place and his eyes could see trace amounts of illegal substance powders about the place. He wanted to roll his eyes at the clichéd image this painted but knew better than to do so. If the scientists themselves were not into this crap then the aids they brought with them were. These men definitely had ties to the Russian mafia; or rather today’s version of it.
“You find anything interesting?”
If he had been paying any less attention to his surroundings he might have been startled by the sound of Jim talking to him from so close. “Not much,” he said, because that’s what McCoy would have told him, “A couple good med kits for this kind of weather and some winter clothes that tell me they actually stepped outside sometimes.” He took a quick look around the place again for something else that might catch Leonard McCoy’s eye. “The equipment looks like it’s used for testing the ground for minerals. Maybe they were lookin’ for di-lithium?”
“On an ice planet?”
“Who better than the Russians?”
Jim shrugged and if to acknowledge the point and kept looking around. “Doesn’t seem like some ground surveying was all they did.” His fingers brushed a bottle that looked a little dusty. “For egg heads they certainly can hold their liquor.”
One of the security officers called Jim over just as John heard Kyle cursing up a storm. He didn’t think twice before making his way to where the kid was sitting, his slender fingers flying over the interface while he gave his commands in a combination of Russian and computer speak. John had never been into the computer speak like Kyle but then again he never really had to be. Considering his background it would be more surprising if the younger looking man hadn’t become something of a computer whisperer over the years.
“What have you got?” he asked softly in the ear that wasn’t covered with a listening device.
Kyle muttered another curse beneath his breath. “The cameras saw what came after these men and it wasn’t pretty. Not by any means.”
John felt his hackles rise at that. “Humanoid, completely alien or machine?”
Kyle searched through some images and brought up one that showed something even John had trouble describing. It was four legged but its arms could count as two more. It had the head of a ram, the chest of what looked like a man although its arms were furred and the hands were shaped more like bird’s claws. Its four legs were furred as well and its feet were wide and flat so it could easily walk on the snow. It had a tail but it looked to be split into nine pieces, all nine with a blade on the end. It made John’s eyebrows shoot up at the sight of it.
“Does that answer your question?”
“The records say it is a called something like a Kelovian? It’s hard to tell with their butchered pronunciation.”
“Is it a native species?”
“Was a native species. Until the invasion.”
Kyle put the picture away and brought up a different file. This one showed several pages worth of information about machines that looked something like squids or other six legged tentacle things. John looked in the images for some kind of weakness automatically but he was fairly certain that Kyle had already found one. His paranoia about any machine that looked remotely threatening was sometimes beneficial. “The records these scientists have say that these machines started to invade within a few months of this lab being built. This place stayed hidden but they have record of these machines slowly eradicating the native species. Then when the scientists starting going topside…”
“…they were killed too.”
“I’ll say.” Kyle moved quickly and pulled open one of the smaller sheets, this one without pictures. “Says here they never found out the origins of the machines but the last entry claims that they have no record of the things ever leaving so there is a good chance that they are still here.”
“Meaning that anytime we need to go topside…”
“…they’ll know we’re here.”
Kyle nodded and closed the file again, going back to his recordings and closing the files. “If you found anything useful around here, better make sure we got enough of ‘em for everybody. These kids may not have our experience but I’d rather not get them killed unnecessarily.”
John nodded and patted the back of Kyle’s chair in acknowledgement before stepping away. He’d have to think of a subtle way to get everybody into those winter camouflage coats then maybe rig something to hide their heat signatures? That was going to be trickier. He wasn’t an engineer, dammit! He’d have to leave the relatively modern weapons for the kids too. They wouldn’t know how to work a gun that still used actual bullets after all. He wondered if there would be any extra clips around the place just in case. Maybe these machines would have shields that phasers couldn’t get through but bullets still could because projectiles were just too archaic for them to think that a people might use them still? It was worth a shot… all puns intended.
He was so concentrated on the task at hand he nearly jumped out of his skin when Jim touched his arm, having been apparently tried to catch his attention in some other way at first completely unsuccessfully. The only reason he managed to avoid clocking the kid was because as fast as his reflexes were, his brain was just as fast in case something like this happened. As it was, it looked like he just jumped a bit when he was touched.
“Damn it Jim,” he groused and turned to face the other man, “I damn well nearly took off your head there. What did you want?”
“I was asking what Chekov said to you. You looked all serious and zoned out there. Was it something bad?”
“Why don’t you ask him yourself?” John had no idea what Kyle wanted to actually tell Jim about their little situation. “Thought you said you were gonna do your best to try and steal him from under my nose.”
One of Jim’s blond eyebrows rose. “We’ve got more important things to worry about right now. Like what Chekov saw that screen he decided to tell you about. Are my people at risk for getting sick up there?”
John sighed and ran a hand through his hair. It would sound weird for him to know this information and fully understand it but Jim needed to know and had a right to know as the captain. He could handle the questions later. For now he just really needed to make sure that there was enough equipment for everyone to survive the fight should those machines if it came down to that.
“Chekov says the scientists kept track of the native animals on this planet. They were pretty populous according to their notes until fairly recently when these alien robot things started landing and killing off the natives. Apparently this bunker that they built for themselves is insulated enough that the machines couldn’t find it but who says what happened if they up and left it?”
“Machines wiped out a planet full of aliens?”
“That’s what the records say.”
“Why would they do that?”
John could name several instances in history where machines decided that they were superior to living things and decided to take over but most of these instances were machines that were built on the same planet that they later conquered. Why they would planet hop, he had no idea. He was a doctor now, damn it! “I have no idea, Jim, but Chekov says he’s got video evidence to prove it. Go take a look yourself. You may see something I didn’t.”
The captain nodded and turned toward the computers while John went back to the equipment, this time picking up and looking over some of the guns that were more recent to see if they were recent enough for the phaser users to use. He didn’t fire anything but he did check to see which weapons were useable. Nearly everything worked. Only a few were duds but the few that remained were more than enough to equip their little team.
“Get the jackets, pants and boots on,” he snapped at the security personnel who looked bored, “If we’ve gotta get outta here we gotta make sure that you don’t freeze your skinny behinds out there in the winter wonderland.” He grabbed a set for himself too and started putting them on over his own clothes before he traded the boots too. “You too Jim.” He had finished lacing the last boot just in time.
PART THREE - MAKING A RUN FOR IT
Kyle couldn’t begin to describe the kind of words that were flowing through his mind. He wasn’t just cursing. He practically invented some of the expletives that came to mind. His hands flew over the keyboards and the gave the computers instructions to boost the downloading time while he kept his grey eyes focused on the screens above. He couldn’t quite hear the sounds through the ceiling of the bunker but he could clearly see the movement of one of the spider looking machines that was walking around on the surface above.
“Captain!” he called, barely able to tear his eyes away from the screens, let alone shift away from the images of the machines to check the download rate. It was a little more than three quarters of the way done. “Ve have hostile machines vaiting up above. Ze must get ready to defend ourselves.”
Kirk hurried over to see what he was talking about, one of his boots still unlaced, but Kyle didn’t pay that much any mind. He turned get up, only to have John hand him a set of clothes. The boots were going to be a bit big but that was expected. Most actual adult men were bigger than he was, especially in a time like now where everyone could make themselves bigger and better with a few hormones during their teenage years to make sure that they grew just right at just the right times. Why people did that, he wasn’t sure but it hardly mattered. He was too busy trying to get dressed as fast as possible in the white insulating clothes and trading his work boots that weren’t made for snow for these insulated snow boots.
“How do you know they’re hostile?”
Kyle grunted as he strapped the snow pants into place. “Look at zese files.” He reached over and typed in a few words so that the file in question came up to show what the researchers had gathered on the machines. He gave a command to the computer to translate the file into English which it did with minimal fuss. “Zey kill anyzing zat lives, breathes and produces carbon dioxide. Zat makes us targets.”
He grabbed the jacket and slipped that on next, his hands easily working the buttons into place. He hoped there were gloves to go with this. Handling metal weapons in arctic temperatures hadn’t been something he had enjoyed during his time in Russia. He was pretty sure John would agree with him on that much.
He ignored the captain’s orders to the security officers as he traded his boots and looked to John for gloves a gun. Quite frankly he was far more interested in what John thought about these things and how he filled out the winter clothes that nicely. “We got a plan?” he asked John quietly enough that he wouldn’t be heard over the captain’s orders, “because while those kids are gonna to be fallin’ over themselves to get killed, we gotta make sure Jim stays as safe and sound as we can manage until we can com the Enterprise to transport us back to the ship.”
John finished strapping a few med packs onto the belt of snow pants and adjusted the jacket to easily slip over and hide them immediately from sight. He made a handsome figure dressed in all that white with the relatively kindly doctor tucked away and the old Marine back into place. “We gotta wait until the bastards up top get a move on, at least away from our only way out. Then, once we’ve got enough clearing, we can one by one climb out of her and take cover in the trees. If they attack, we take ‘em out with as few casualties as can be managed then make a run for it through the trees while we try to keep our faces covered by our shirts.”
“And what if the Cap gets hit?”
“Then we carry him with us assuming it’s non-fatal.”
It sounded like a plan although it wasn’t a very good one. Once his winter clothes were on Kyle went back to his computers, making the system call up all the information the scientists had gathered about these machines over time. The download was nearly complete. Their mission was almost accomplished and the computers were showing that the machine that was trotting along above them seemed unsure whether to stay or move on. It was nerve wracking but it was also the first time in a long time that Kyle Reese could honestly say that he had felt genuine fear. This felt a bit too much like those years after Judgment Day and those years were bad enough the second time through. At least he knew how to survive those years.
“Chekov! What are you doing?”
“Getting ze last of ze files sir. It may be our only vay of explaining to Starfleet vhat happened here.”
“Is that really important right now?”
Kyle was so tempted to give the man a sarcastic reply but it was beyond rude to do so to a commanding officer in this kind of a situation so instead he focused on the task at hand. “It vill only take a few more seconds. I have ze system running as fast as it can. Zen I can have it erase all ze information it has on itself and ve can make our escape vit out vorry as to vhezer ze machines have ze same information ve have.”
“Jim, let him finish. What he’s sayin’ makes sense!”
Kyle could practically feel the captain turn on his friend with incredulous wide eyes as if surprised that the doctor would dare speak at a time like this. He was pretty sure that now would be the time when Kirk would have brought up the idea that he and “Bones” were sleeping together if the computer hadn’t finished the download at right that second. He safely ejected the disk and gave the computer the commands to erase its own hard drive and any traces of the information, including its own operating system. It would take a while but it was the cleanest way of getting rid of this information. Damaged systems could be repaired and some data recovered. Erased systems couldn’t have data recovered from them. Even machines knew that.
While the doctor and the captain argued about the sense of his arrangement, Kyle finished dressing and went to find a weapon to supplement the phaser. Phasers were decent weapons against humanoids but against machines? Depending on the era that were about as useful as a ping pong ball. Today the machines practically expected phasers. Guns with actual bullets might work. Metals might withstand projectiles but glass lenses on cameras, especially if a machine’s shields were only designed for phaser type abilities, were definitely a weakness he could work with. If it didn’t work… well then he could at least say he tried everything.
Amongst the guns he found an old but still serviceable AKS-74 (surprising really considering how old it was) and a few magazines for it. He put those into his pockets and put one into the gun, loading it easily and then slinging the weapon over his shoulder. It was a comfortable weight there, one he had missed sorely when it was replaced by the small, shiny phasers and the light weight phaser rifles of today. The next oldest one was one he recognized from somewhere close to John’s era. He’d leave that one there. The rest should be serviceable for these relatively young men. They worked like the phasers today did only in much more primitive designs. At least there was no reloading to worry about.
When Kyle turned around again to check on the computers he was surprised to see the security officers and Kirk staring at him. “Vhat?” he said, just barely remembering to keep the accent, “is Russian veapon. Vhy vouldn’t I know how to use it?” It certainly fit the character for him to say something like that although in truth, back during the wait for Judgement Day this had been one of his favorites. He had been to Russia multiple times since he had been ‘reborn’ in this body but no one here needed to know that.
Before any other comment could be made, John sighed and came to retrieve his own gun, doing much the same as Kyle had as he too took the magazines -as few as they were- and stored them in his pockets for later except for one to arm the weapon with. The security guys seemed to accept this as relatively normal so came up to pick and choose within the remaining guns but the captain’s look of suspicion never really faded. Kyle stepped away to give them the space they needed to put together their own weaponry and John followed him. If they had ear pieces, Kyle might have felt better about his operation but he could do without them. They just had to make sure no one got lost somehow out in the wilderness as until they learned whether their communicators were traceable or not they could not rely on them.
Once everyone was dressed and armed with something beyond their basic phasers, Jim Kirk began issuing orders -orders that would get the security boys killed- and Kyle just nodded along with it. Out of the corner of his eye he saw John do the same thing. They would let the captain think he was in charge up until he proved himself fucking useless and then they would take over. Well, take over. That was such an ugly term. They would commandeer command until such a time that Captain Kirk was safe and sound aboard the Enterprise then face their punishment. Likely brig time but that was fine. It wouldn’t be the most torturous time either of them had spent in a confined space.
Kyle looked over to the screens to the cameras that were still operational while the rest of the information on the hard drive. The machine had walked away but no doubt it wasn’t too far off. He couldn’t adjust the cameras now to find it. No matter. These things tracked through carbon dioxide production right? He reached into the collar of his jacket to grab his scarf and wrapped it around the lower half of his face a few times before tucking the rest against his neck and into the collar of the jacket again before he place the snow goggles over his eyes before he put the hood back on and secured it in place. The gloves on his hands made this entire thing a little tricky but he managed it and John, upon seeing was he was doing, decided to follow his lead as well. Kirk looked confused and the security people just kind of shrugged, already gathering near the ladder that would take them to the surface. At least their bright red shirts were hidden.
Kirk gave the order to go up so Kyle and John moved closer, although they did let the security folk go first. John told Kyle via hand signals to go after the security people and he would follow Kirk. Good idea. It would minimize the risk to the captain. The three other man stepped just outside and held their phasers out as if they learned how to shoot from a movie. The fanned out a little, their breaths condensing in front of their faces. After a few minutes they called an all clear. Kyle called bullshit in his mind so he climbed the ladder but stayed out of sight for a moment. It was a good thing too. He saw a flash of light as one man was shot in the back. The other two turned frantically to shoot at the origin of the shot but none of them managed to fire upon it before they too were taken down. Kyle, however was faster.
He turned from where he was on the ladder and aimed his phaser carefully, firing at the space where he could barely make out the machine. He saw a spark go off as presumably he hit part of it but what part it was he couldn’t tell from here. It didn’t matter. He had wounded it.
He scrambled out of the opening of the base but kept low and kept firing at it. “Move move move,” he snapped as loudly as he could through the scarf, trying to catch the thing off guard completely to shut it down. Well it seemed like phasers worked fine. The old weapons for now were not needed. However, that didn’t mean that the phasers would last for ever, especially in this cold, and there was no telling how long it would take the Enterprise to find them. They needed to get moving and quickly.
Kyle heard the heavy boots of Kirk on the snow first then the heavier boots of John behind him as they aimed their weapons in the same direction as he was. The machine apparently still had some life in it and fired in Kirk’s direction but John was fast enough to move him out of the way. Kyle blasted it again, precisely, and another part of the machine fizzled. He stood slowly and backed quickly after Kirk and Grimm, keeping his attention on the machine as it whined and crackled and tried to move to no doubt go after them. They didn’t have much time. He picked up his pace and once they were relatively safely amongst the trees, turned and ran forward with as much speed as he could muster given how weighed down he was.
The forest around them grew thicker the further they ran, Kyle every once in a while turning around to check to make sure they weren’t being followed. So far so good but he knew better than to drop his guard. The machine was likely communicating with its comrades that there were still living beings on the planet. They didn’t have long to get to an obscure as fuck location (at least for this planet) and build themselves a decent shelter so they could sleep without worrying about getting blown to hell. If the machines didn’t know the communicator frequency already, they had one shot, maybe two at the most to get in contact with the Enterprise, assuming the machines haven’t already sent out a jamming signal just in case. Fuck. A. Duck. This rescue mission just became a survival mission. This was so not what he signed up for originally.
Part V: Let the Games Begin