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Going Through The Motions

Posted on 17 Dec 2017 @ 2:18pm by Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant Joey Geisler

Mission: Crossing Over
Location: Captain's Quarters
Timeline: MD14 || 0500 hours

Space. The vast frontier...

Harvey laid in bed, hands clasped together on his chest. The alarm hadn't gone off yet, though Harvey didn't need it. What he needed was sleep, and at 0500, it had eluded him all the night. They'd been sitting here for two weeks now. Though they had some promising ideas, it would be a while before they would be able to even try to enter.

It was the waiting, the stalling, that had been wearing on him. If only they could move along soon...

Next to him, Joey rolled over for what felt like the millionth time since she laid down hours ago. Comfort eluded her, and even she knew it was only going to get worse the farther along she got in her pregnancy. Still, that wasn't the only thing that kept her tossing and turning. The Zone had a pretty big part in that, and so did the many questions.

It was five in the morning, and there were still a couple hours to go before she needed to get up, but what good would that do when she couldn't sleep? None. With a frustrated sigh, she sat up slowly as to not disturb Harvey, then carefully pushed the covers away. If she couldn't sleep, then something constructive needed to be done, and heading to the gym was at the top if that list. "Time to fake a smile," she muttered as she climbed out of bed.

Harvey was not disturbed in the slightest, looking over to Joey as she rustled out of bed. "I didn't keep you up, did I?" Harvey asked, not moving much himself.

Joey turned her attention toward the bed when he spoke and shook her head in the dimly lit room. "No. I couldn't get comfortable. I tried my hardest to keep from moving around too much so I didn't disturb you," she replied, settling down on the edge of the bed. "Did I wake you at some point?"

"No," Harvey mustered, his voice weak from fatigue. "I don't think I slept at all."

"You need a day off," she said, frowning when she heard the way he sounded. "And you should take one. Commander Teixeira can handle things, and if something important comes up, you can be called for. And please, no arguing. You need this." And like him, she was exhausted, but planned to push through it.

"And what would I do with the day off?" Harvey asked. His eyes looked upward and out of the ship to where the blue glow of the convergence zone lay. "We sit here, day after day, while this goliath taunts us, demanding a contender. And we can't even figure out how to get inside."

"You'll relax... sleep... maybe visit the holodeck... watch some Muppets... anything you want to," Joey replied as she stretched out next to him once more and brought her hand up to cup his cheek. "Hey, we're going to find a way inside, Harvey. It's just taking more time than we might like. We want to get in there safely, and rushing that isn't a good idea."

"I know that," he said, slipping an arm underneath her as she laid back down. He knew she wasn't trying to tell him how this all worked, just attempting to reassure him. "I just can't turn it off. Can't stop thinking about what's on the other side."

Joey had seen Harvey exhausted many times before, but there was something quite different about this time, and that concerned her. She wished for some way to fix it for him... to make it all okay, and even though she as the type that would try, this wasn't something she could fix. "We'll find out what's waiting for us soon, honey," she said softly in a tone meant to be reassuring. "Why don't you try to close your eyes for a minute?" Now she was giving consideration to taking the day off just to be with him... to hopefully help him get through this.

He sighed, closing his eyes while silently protesting. He didn't think this exercise would do much, if anything. Even under the darkness of eyelids, he still saw the blue convergence zone, swirling, rotating, dancing. Ultimately, Harvey had to shake it off, rising from the bed to splash some water on his face in the bathroom sink.

She hated seeing him like this, and hated that she couldn't seem to help him. Was there more going on here than she realized? Would he tell her if there were? "Honey?" Joey asked as she rose from the bed and moved toward the bathroom. "Is something else bothering you on top of the waiting? Maybe the probe?" As much as she didn't want to bring that up, maybe that particular evil was necessary.

Harvey shut off the water and just stood there. He hadn't answered her question yet, but he did look up to see himself in the mirror. Harvey didn't stare at it long, as he didn't like what he saw. He didn't like it any more than Joey's question. The probe haunted him. The zone taunted him. But he didn't know how to express those feelings. He was still struggling with the idea of trusting his crew. He had to extend some trust to them, so that the job would get done, but he couldn't allow him to get close to them. At least, not close enough.

After a long while, Harvey just sighed. "I... I don't know. I don't know anything anymore."

Joey frowned. Something else was clearly bothering him, but what that something was... she had no idea. "Is it that bad?" she found herself asking softly, resisting the urge to go to him. She'd tried to comfort him moments ago, but it didn't seem to do any good, and likely wouldn't now, either. Helplessness... hopelessness... and other emotions surged through her, and Joey didn't like any of them.

"I hate waiting," he admitted. Sighing, he added, "Well, I guess it depends on what I'm waiting for. Searching, I don't mind. But I can't help feeling that I'm about to repeat some mistakes."

"None of us like waiting, honey. We're sitting here when we could be going through... on our way to getting answers to questions that I know are having a hand in keeping you at night. The mistakes... we will deal with them as they're presented. You aren't alone," she said, moving over to him again. Joey slipped a hand into his and gave it a gentle squeeze, a nonverbal assurance that she would stand by him every step of the way and offer support. She knew there was more to all of this, though. "Now... you haven't really been yourself since all of this started. Will you tell me what's wrong? Please?"

Harvey stood there, and looked down at the hand she'd squeezed. It was a simple gesture, prompting Harvey to close his eyes and bow his head. "I feel like I'm missing something," he said softly. "Like there's a big piece to all of this that's missing. I sent that probe, Joey. All that was there was one message. Where's the rest of the data? Where's the modifications to the probe to survive the trip. Where's... where's the ship?"

Joey swallowed back a lump in her throat. "I have a theory, but nothing that really holds any credibility," she said softly. The fact that her theory was plausible freaked her out, but she did everything she could to keep that from showing outwardly.

He had a theory as well, but it was one he didn't want to verbalize in the fear that it might actually be true. He looked up at her, studying her face in the dim lighting before giving a nod of acknowledgment, allowing her to proceed with the idea.

He really wanted her to say it out loud? A large part of her felt as though if she did say it aloud, then it was going to happen. But... weren't things already set in motion? Joey took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "I think it's all going to come down to the Dolmoqour and the Followers," she said barely above a whisper. "If Akagi and Yuki were able to infiltrate the Vasco da Gama, who's to say they couldn't infiltrate the Black Hawk, too? In my heart, I think they're the reason the rest of the data is missing... the reason there was only one message..." She blinked, trying to keep unshed tears from falling. "Mutiny... by people we think we can trust."

The Followers... thought Harvey. While they had taken down the Vasco da Gama, it didn't appear they'd been lurking there forever. Her worst case scenario hadn't lined up with his. Harvey was heavily considering the fact that whatever danger awaited them, he'd be forced to sacrifice his ship to stop it, or even slow it down. That, Harvey had decided, would be his final option, his last resort.

Harvey squeezed her hand in return. "I don't think it'll come to that," he told her gently. At least he hoped it didn't. They'd have to get through this, one way or another. In addition to his crew, he had two other lives to consider in all of this, his unborn children. They deserved to live, and he'd make sure they would.

"We've gone through the unknown before and came out okay in the end. Take the alternate universe for example. We had no idea what we were going to encounter, and there was a great chance we would lose a great deal of our people, but we didn't," she pointed out. "We came out of that even stronger than before, and the same could be said this time."

Joey took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "Look... I know getting the message has taken its toll on you, and all the unanswered questions are eating away at you... driving you to the point that you can't sleep. But, know this... everything will be okay. We've dealt with things that have seemed impossible before and made it," she said softly. "That being said... let's take the day off... and I know we'll be on call, but that's okay, too. You need to take your mind off of all of this before it lands you in sickbay."

Reluctantly he nodded. Taking the day off would do absolutely nothing to ease his nerves, nor could he think of anything that could. If anything, he would give the day a very late start.

That was almost too easy. Joey eyed him for a few moments before she chose to let it go. "What do you say we go to Ops in a while, get a Christmas tree and a few decorations, then come back here to decorate?"

"Christmas?" Harvey asked, suddenly somewhat distracted by the fact that he'd lost track of the Gregorian calendar. "Is it that time of year already?"

"It is. Christmas is in eleven days, as a matter of fact," she answered.

Harvey would take Joey at her word on that, especially since he did not have a calendar nearby. "And we're just a few days away from my first anniversary as a CO." Harvey sighed. "My word, has it been that long?"

"You have been a damn good CO, too, you know that? Time seems to fly by, doesn't it?" Joey asked with a smile. She was so very proud of her husband and everything he'd accomplished over the years. "Before we know it, we're going to be parents, too. A lot has happened to you in a year, hasn't it?"

A lot. Two of the smallest, yet largest words in the English language. Even muttering them together created a massive understatement. The Golden Stars. The Consortium. Now this. "Certainly did," he confirmed.

"A lot of good came with all of that, too," she pointed out.

"That I cannot argue," Harvey said. Still, he sighed. "There is much to be thankful for." And much to lose.

"I don't know exactly what the future holds, but I do know that we can make it through whatever is thrown our way," Joey told him. "I've noticed you've been taking a couple steps backwards and are slowly rebuilding those walls you knocked down. It breaks my heart to see it happen, but know that you have my support no matter what, and I'll always be here for you."

Harvey would have been foolish to think that no one had observed his internal struggle. He had, after all, given hints to many of the crew, Mila included. But he could not expound on it, not now. He had to protect himself, and by doing so, protect the crew. At least, that was the lie he sold himself. "Thank you," he told her, squeezing her hand again though he did not explain further.

Joey had no intentions of nagging at him or pushing him on the issue any further. He needed something that she couldn't seem to give him, and that was slowly killing her inside. "I guess I should get ready for my shift," she said. "I still think you should take the day off and do something for yourself. Like I said... if you're needed, someone will get ahold of you. Go practice surfing. It's pretty therapeutic."

He nodded, finding himself actually considering it. "I might do so," he admitted. Or at least ease into the day with a slower pace, head onto the bridge, at least a few minutes later than normal.

That was more than she could have hoped for, but in her heart she doubted it would happen. Joey had a feeling he'd end up in the bridge or in his ready room in an effort to try to take his mind off of things. Could she blame him? She was about to do the same thing. It was better than sitting around and being herself up over her inability to accomplish helping him. "I'll see you later, then," she said.

Joey retrieved a clean uniform and made her way into the bathroom to get ready to start her day. She was already feeling sluggish, and debated having a cup of coffee to help push her through. That thought was quickly pushed from her mind when her stomach turned.

Once she was ready to go, she made her way into the main living area to give Rico and Pequeno fresh food and water. Once that was done, she sat on the couch to pet both dogs for a few minutes before heading out.

Harvey had retired to the couch while Joey prepared for the day, rather than begin his morning routine. A couple PADDs were set on the coffee table by him, a few leftovers from the day before, including news on Task Force updates from Deep Space 11. Out of respect for Joey's wishes, he instead picked up a copy of the book she'd given him a few months ago for a little light reading, if one could call it that.

When Joey sat down on the couch for a few minutes, he didn't say anything to her, rather kept trying to read the same page over and over again. His mind continued to wander to the great mystery before him. Perhaps he'd take another look at the materials the science team had been working on. He didn't expect to see anything they missed, but he could hope to gain a better understanding of their situation. After all, any advantage he could acquire before moving inside the zone, he would take.

Joey cast a glance in Harvey's direction. He was troubled, and the last thing she wanted was to leave when things were tense between them. Rising to her feet once the two canines had their fill of affection, she moved over to her husband and settled down on his lap. "Harvey, I love you, and I know things seem pretty impossible right now with all the missing pieces to our current puzzle, but they're not," she said softly.

She took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "You made me promise you once that I would never leave, but I couldn't because I never knew what one day to the next would bring. I'm making you that promise now. I'm not going anywhere," she said, leaning forward to kiss his softly. "Even if you wall yourself off to me... push me away... whatever the case may be... I'll always be here for you and for us."

He couldn't say that he was disappointed when his ill-fated attempt at reading was obstructed by his pregnant wife, especially since she was a far more pleasing sight than black ink bleeding together. Her words resonated with him, but they were not enough to break through the barrier he'd been creating. Releasing his hold on the book for a moment, he placed one hand on her womb, knowing that he wouldn't be able to feel what was inside there for some time. This would all end soon, or so he hoped, and he'd be able to put all of this behind him. His lips met hers, and he kissed her. When he pulled back, he simply said, "I know. And I love you for that, and more."

"Give me the word, and I'll stay with you. Just like you, if I'm needed, they will call for me," she said, slipping an arm around him.

Under normal circumstances, he would enjoy that. Perhaps once they were inside and he found other ways to occupy his rather focused mind. Harvey, therefore, shook his head. "No, my dear, perhaps a different time." Truth be told, he didn't want her to sit around the cabin until he eventually put on his uniform and made for the Ready Room.

"Okay," she said, trying not to sound as disappointed as she felt, though Joey didn't really blame him. He was walling himself away, and the last thing he probably wanted were people crowding him. After a quick kiss to his forehead, Joey rose to her feet and smoothed her hands over her uniform to straighten it out. Maybe someone would be lucky enough to pull him out of this, but it didn't seem like it was going to be her. "I better get going, then. I love you, Harvey," she said, giving him a half hearted smile before walking out of the door. Today was going to be hell.

Harvey watched her leave and remained in the chair. He sat still for a moment or two, partially wishing he'd done that a bit differently. Sadly, actions such as his were hard to repeal. Sighing, he turned his head to look out the window where the convergence zone continued to taunt him. They had to get inside soon and figure this all out. Otherwise, Harvey figured, there might be no way to undo all of this damage he'd caused in the last month.


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