Posted Nov. 13, 2019, 8:11 p.m. by Lieutenant Commander Jarred Alindor (Chief Engineer) (Steven Sigle)
Posted by Lieutenant Commander Jarred Alindor (Chief Engineer) in Vespa V - A Need to get Away
Posted by Lieutenant Commander Jarred Alindor (Chief Engineer) in Vespa V - A Need to get Away
Posted by Lieutenant Commander Jarred Alindor (Chief Engineer) in Vespa V - A Need to get Away
Posted by… suppressed (16) by the Post Ghost! 👻
“Oh sugar honey iced tea, we are going to die… that’s it we are going to die… see this is why I hunted. I could go out in the woods and shoot things and prevent them from blowing me up… or learning how to wield tools… you want planet of the apes ‘cause babe this how you get planet of the apes… or planet of the Kalani’s cause I am going to name them after you… yep I saw them first so I get to name them, that’s how it works right? I am going to name them Kalani’s then I am going to shoot them for taking me out on trips where I could be eating by them!” Jarred said, his voice growing in volume as he felt more irate as he stood there. They needed to do something, just sitting here waiting for them to notice them wasn’t going to work.
“Hey,” she said spinning to face Jarred. “That is what you call a magical weekend. You take me out into the wilderness for a little waterfall action and then shoot me,” Kalani’s voice cracked a bit from the hot whisper to a low volume shout. “No wonder why I was able to snap you up with a smile and jelly donut!”
“I didn’t take you out here! You invited me silly, you said you wanted to study the planet, and now you got us stranded here!” he said, his voice raised as he looked at her like she had a second head for blaming him on this all. He just came here to bond with her, she came to study and learn. At this point neither seemed to be going according to plan.
As if to punctuate the tone of Jarred’s words, a loud boom echoed through the jungle throwing Jarred and Kalani back and off their feet as if they were a stunt double in a high budget holomovie. The energy wave that hit them was hard and fast but not dangerous enough to cause any physical damage. It was as if a tornado touched down inches from them blowing foliage, leaves, and loose dirt in all directions. Birds and other insects took to the skies around them screeching and buzzing terrified by the sudden sound that had permeated their idyllic jungle setting. Small rodents that had no been flung to the far corners of the jungle darted backward not caring if they crossed the weird hairless apes that were tramping about the area like they owned it.
The distance Kalani and Jarred traveled was only about three feet and Jarred would find he was lying in a soft bed of moss luckily missing anything that could have impaled him or broken any bones. The force of the blast was not enough, however, to clear out the jungles thick vegetative growth. Once the shock wave rolled through, the plants, ferns, and branches moved back to their upright position obscuring any visual of the village. As the local wildlife slowly settled an eerie quiet would have filled the jungle. Like being in the eye of a hurricane the jungle was now deathly silent.
Ensign Kalani Kane, science
Jarred felt his ears ringing as he began to get up, dazed and disoriented he stumbled like a gorilla trying to walk on two legs as he lumbered around as he began to get his bearings. His vision felt blurred as it slowly began to focus, the sound quieting as he began looking around as he began to assess what just happened. “Dear god.” he shouted, louder than he intended as blinked slowly as things finally slid back into place as he began to take notice that Kalani was no where near him.
“Kalani!?” he shouted, fear beginning to fill his mind as he looked around, shocked and startled as he began to notice she was no where around here.
“Kal this isn’t funny, where are you?” he said louder as he looked to see where she might have gone, seeing if there was any clues in the wreckage around him.
A soft shout could be heard when the area around him was quiet. It had a soft echoing quality to it as if she was talking into a tin can from down the hall. “Jarred. Jarred. I’m stuck,” she kept repeating over and over. At times a few more words were added indicating she was also hoping he was okay then alternating with cursing about faulty engineering equipment.
“Jarred. Jarred this is not funny.” Her voice was a bit louder but starting to edge with hints of trepidation. “Jarred please be okay. I need you to be okay. Answer me Alindor,” she belted out as the panic replaced the concern. A scratching sound followed by crumbling seemed to fill the dead space between her words seeking for him to reply to her calls.
“Jarred I need help,” she said before letting out a small yelp.
Ensign Kalani Kane science
Jarred heard the soft nose as he began walking towards it. He could hear the shouts a bit louder, getting closer he began to look around. “Kalani? Sweetie where are you?” he shouted loud. He wish he had a tricorder, anything to help him. “Keep shouting love, I will follow your voice… unless there is a hole then try not to get me to fall in it too!”
“I’m down here,” she yelled hearing her voice crack a bit. Running her fingers through her hair, Kalani took a deep and calming breath. She could feel the stress and frustration of the situation pulling her out of rational thought. His voice seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere as it echoed around her. The hot, humid environment of the jungle had been replaced by a cold, damp moistness. Reaching her hand out, Kalani gingerly touched the walls looking for a vine or root she could use to pull herself out of the hole she was in. It was hard to see what was around her. Only a small sliver of light pierced the blackness of the underground cavern she was standing in. If Jarred couldn’t find her, Kalani was in a lot of trouble. The hole she fell through was small. Maybe a meter wide at best. It was just big enough to swallow a person yet small enough Jarred could miss it by a single footfall. “Jarr.....ed,” she bit her lip hard. She had been trapped once like this in the jungle. She had almost died. Now it was happening again. “Jarred. Jarred,” she yelled feeling panic lace her words. As she yelled, her fingers brushed a thick vine along the dirt wall of the pit she was standing in. Wrapping her hands around it, Kalani planted her feet and tried to pull herself up. Pain shot through her body like a knife. Gritting her teeth, Kalani let out a groan and tried again to pull herself up. The pain was in her elbow.
“Jarred,” Kalani yelled out again. From the top side of the cavern, Jarred would hear her yet it would be muffled. If he looked close enough however, he would see something moving on the jungle floor. It was as thick as a snake but clearly a gnarled root. One end had its tendrils wrapped around the bases of several trees and rocks. The other end seemed to disappear amid the ground litter, plants, and flowers.
Ensign Kalani Kane
Jared began following the voice of Kalani as he trekked through the forest. She was getting louder but he couldn’t find her anywhere he could see, just brush and trees darted his view as worry began to set. “Lani… baby I can’t see you… anywh…” suddenly as Jarred turned a corner around a tree a loud collapse as he fell beneath the earth. With a sharp thud he landed as he felt the ground was soft and silky as he began to push up, only to find two large mounds right where his hands landed.
“Jarred I’m he,” she started to reply but was sharply cut off from her response. A deep moan replaced any word that had been forming in her throat.
“Lani” Jarred said as his eyes began to focus, finding himself on top of her in a most compromising position as he quickly rolled to the side. “I’m so sorry… you… are you hurt?” He quickly added, realizing he had just landed square on top of her made him worry if he had compacted her injuries even worse as he helped her to sit up.
“No but I think I just went from a D to a B,” she groaned with a half laugh lying on the soft moss of the cavern floor. “If you are okay with that then yes I am fine.” She let him right her and spent a long moment looking at his face. It didn’t matter how he had gotten down here. What mattered was that he was down here with her. “You certainly know how to knock a girl off her feet,” Kalani teased him.
The smile started to fade the longer she looked at him. It was replaced with a tightness in her jaw. Her breathing pattern changed from a normal rhythm to one where she was trying to control the inhales and exhales. She swallowed hard once and they threw her arms around his neck. Not saying a word she buried her face into the crook where his neck and shoulders met. Sitting in silence she took a moment to steady her breathing yet the unease rhythm was now showing on her body. She tried not to shake but it was useless. “I thought you weren’t going to find me,” she said in a low tone. Her voice was muffled as she spoke into his neck. He would also feel a wetness spreading in this area. It was familiar to most men and often made them extremely uncomfortable. Kalani had no idea if it would make Jarred feel this way or not so she decided to give him an out.
“Lani…” he said softly as he brushed her head softly, letting his head rest on the top of hers. Everything had gone awry, and it was natural to feel scared. He couldn’t deny he was worried himself. This was a big planet and they were quite literally naked and afraid like that old horrible Earth tv show Lani showed him. She played it to try and tell him the dangers of the wild and not preparing, now he wondered if this was somehow some horrible misshapen plan she concocted to recant that show.
Jarred darted his eyes around a bit, trying to see if there was hidden cameras he wasn’t aware of. Shaking his head feeling silly even thinking that he pulled her in tighter as he let everything go and just let them comfort each other.
Kalani did not fight him or make up an excuse as to why she needed to be held. She just let him do it. It felt good to have his arms around her. It was like a weight being lifted off her shoulders to know she would not have to figure out how to get out of this place alone. Sitting on the soft moss floor she let her arms wrap around his body. Yes, they had to get out of this hole but they could take a few seconds to recoup themselves. The more secure she felt in his arms the harder it was to control her emotions. If she had been alone, Kalani would not have stood here and bawled like she was doing now. She would have pressed on and cried later if needed in her shower back on the ship or in a shuttle which no one never used. Since Kane was not alone, however, she took a moment to let her frustrations out.
“Don’t cry baby, I would move heaven and Earth to find you…” he said softly as he pulled him off, his shoulder wet from her tears as he looked into her eyes as he placed both hands on her face as he used his thumbs to wipe away the tears softly that had rolled down her cheeks.
Kalani looked at him but didn’t stop him from consoling her. It felt good to let someone be in control for a change and not have to do everything herself. Still after a few seconds she didn’t want him to think she was a basket case.
“And I am not crying because I am scared. There is current research that when humans cry in response to stress, their tears contain a number of stress hormones and other chemicals. I am just detoxifying,” Kalani stated trying to sound unemotional. The truth was Kalani was scared. Never did she go out into the field like this without having someone know the general area they were in. She had Jarred were alone on the surface when the shuttle dropped them off and now seemed to be below the surface. When she was on Ravi V it took the team hours to realize the research party was overdue before they sent rescuers. The crew of the Saracen only would know they dropped them off at one location and she and Jarred were not there when pick up time was scheduled. “Just give me a second okay. I think I got something in my eye,” she gave him another out. Kalani could not let Alindor think she lost it at the first sign of trouble. They were still in the “Hi I’m Jarred. Hi, I am Kalani stage”.
“Baby… you don’t have to be some tough queen trying to prove you got this… I’m scared too… but we can do this.”
Kalani opened her mouth to speak but then saw something. Just over the edge of Jarred’s shoulder. She inclined her head slightly to the right hoping for a better look as she talked. It is not that. Stop being crazy. It won’t hurt you. I didn’t on the surface so there is no reason it should want to now her voice of reason tired to reason with her.
” We are Starfleets finest.” Jarred continued trying to sound encouraging.
“I am not the finest. I am a little dog,” she said in a hurried tone. As she let her eyes adjust to the light she did see what she thought she saw and it was coming closer. There was no way she should have missed it. It was in the jungle with them moments before the explosion. There was no logical reason it should not have ended up down here with them. In the darkness and confusion, it was probably easy to miss. The creature also could have been knocked unconscious. The fall had to have been about ten foot. Not enough to kill you but definitely enough to brain you.
”… we have some rags”
“Rags,” she repeated in a desperate voice as she saw it making slow but steady progression towards them. “Jarred,” Kalani said in a panicky tone that was muffled by her earlier tears.
”… and…” Jarred looked around trying to find something near him.
“Jarred we need to find something to protect ourselves with,” Kalani said letting her eyes dart back and forth from his and to over his shoulder. In the low light, he might not have noticed where her focus was.
He could see Kalani was starting to panic. Spotting a rock he picked it up, “I got a rock”
“A rock,” she said moving to get her feet under her. “What are you going to do with a rock,” she asked rising to her knees and looking him dead in the eyes.
”… and… if they come near me I will do like this.” he said as he did some palm strikes with the rock in his hand. Truth was he knew better attacks but hoped the silliness of him making a fool of himself could help to cheer her up some.
“And if you find a rock we can get a spear and then we are heavily armed… we got this babe… come on pet we will be alright my love.”
It was at this point, Jarred would feel a weight on his left leg. It was heavy enough to notice but not heavy enough to hold him down.
“Snake. Snake. Snake,” she said scrambling backward from him and pointing wildly at his leg. Yes, he did just fall ten feet to save her but Kalani hated snakes. Cold, smooth, and that tongue darting in and out like lightning. She let out a small umph sound as her back impacted the wall. “I…I can’t help you,” she squeaked out. “Snakes are not god’s creatures. They are evil and awful and need to be destroyed,” she said letting her voice take on a deeper more menacing quality, “but I can’t help you” she admitted feeling her fight or flight response kick in. THe problem was snakes were the flight response every time. It was sheer will and nowhere to go that had Kalani still in the same room with Jarred and the slithering monstronity. “Hit is with the rock. Hit it with the rock,” she said an angry but encouraging way. Yes she was a biologist and understood all life was sacred but millennia of dealing with these creatures gave pretty much the human race a case of don’t come near me.
Ensign Kalani Kane science
Jarred looked down finding the snake wrapping, it was cold and scaly as he reacted to the feeling as he high kicked his leg in the air, the snake flying as it crashed into a wall.
“Whaaaa. Whaaa whaaaa are you doing,” she screamed as Kalani watched Jarred ninja kick the snake off his leg and into the air. “Why did you set it loose? I said hit it with a rock. Hit it with a rock,” she growled as if angry. “Not set it free to attack again,” she threw up her hands.
“Babe, uhmmm… run.” Jarred said, there was one thing he knew, snakes like that were nesters… and if one was here there was going to be more.
Kalani snapped out of her rant as she felt Jarred spin her towards the door and in a very ungentleman way shoved her towards what looked like an underground tunnel.
Knowing that Jarred didn’t run from much she didn’t need anymore encouragement to start running and not look back.
“You got it babe you got it, don’t look back don’t.... uhmmmmm.” Jarred looked back eyes was as he saw more coming as they kept going down the tunnel.
Kalani ran batting out a few roots from the vines growing above them. It was only after a bit she realized that she could see in the dimly lit tunnel even without lights. The area had a bluish tinge that reminded her of auxiliary lighting on a ship yet she was running and had no desire to stop and inspect things.
“Jarred. Jarred you still with me,” she yelled rounding a corner. He might have been a track star in his youth but Kalani had spent the past few years running from things that literally wanted to eat her.
Jarred heard shuffling as he ran, turning behind large shadows seem to be following them as he kept up behind her. He wasn’t sure what this was, but he wasn’t willing to find out.
The corner led her to a huge under ground cavern. Her breath echoed as she stopped taking in the site. The cavern had to be about 100 feet tall and half as wide. Large blue crystals glowed on the walls explaining how she had the light to run through the cavern. “Oh my god it’s so beautif,” she said and then abruptly stopped as her hands pinwheeled to stop her from going over the edge of what was a cliff. Leaning her head over some she realized the hard ground below her wasn’t hard ground at all but a crystal clear lake lite by scores of blue crystals giving it a mirror like appearance.
“Jarred you need to see thiiiii,” she said as Jarred ran full bore into her almost pushing her over the edge again. Her arms pinwheeled as she reached out grabbing the only thing that could keep her from falling over. Her hands dig into his bicep as he pulled her back up right.
“Yeah that’s nice, but don’t stop…”
“Don’t stop,” she said as if she didn’t understand his response.
“We need to go back the way we came ,” she said. “The water seems to be flowing out but I think we are better going back the way we came,” she said twisting her hair into a ponytail knot. “I think there was a split in the tunnel. We go back to that point and head left instead of right.” It was then she heard a low scraping type sound emanating from the tunnel where Jarred just emerged. “What’s that sound?”
“A snake or a snake and a couple of hundred of his serpentine brethern,” she said now debating what she feared more. Death by cliff jump or death by a slithering no appendaged creature that was going to swallow her whole. “You know this stuff shouldn’t be happening to me now. B-holovids clearly show time after time that only virgins get thrown into volcanos or eaten by crazy arse monsters,” she ran her fingers through her hair anxiously pulling out the ponytail she just placed on her head. “Are you sure you did it right? I mean I was a novice o’ Jedi Master. You were the one supposed to teach me the ways o’ the force. Lay back. Relax. I got this,” she imitated Jarred’s voice saying what a few hours before were soft words spoken between them. Her current tone, however, made it seem more like flippant dialogue from a romantic comedy. “Right now, am thinking you missed a step or two. Too bad I am never gonna have the chance to try it out a second time.” Kalani was trying to make a joke of things but her face showed her barely holding back the bubbled of panic simmering at the surface with short glibs of humor.
Jarred looked back, he wasn’t certain what was coming but there was little that could be done. “Oh… you’ll get to again…” he said as he smiled as he wrapped his arms around her tightly, before seperating them as he looked in her eyes as he looked back for a split second before making up his mind. “Do you trust me?” he asked her, as he looked back.
His question felt like a sucker punch. “No,” she shot out clearly reading his mind even though there was not a drop of telepathic blood in her body. Her eyes were wide as she instinctively held on to him tighter.
The question in this sense was going to become rhetoric, as he didn’t need an answer.
“At least I got to say I love you once!” he screamed as the pair jumped and fell once more.
“Oh ma gawwwww,” she yelled out not caring that Jarred heard her or that the sounds were bouncing everywhere off the cavernous walls.
As her screams echoed Jarred looked back for one more second, the shadow he saw was bigger and closer as he ran and leaped off after Kalani. Splashing Jarred went down deep into the lake. It was farther than he thought as he began to swim upwards as he broke the surface. Looking around he spotted Kalani as he could tell from her face she wasn’t as pleased from being pushed as he thought she would have been.
“What… it was coming… you… I saved us. A thank you would be nice you know.” Jarred said as he ran his hands through her hair as he slicked his hair back.
Ensign Kalani Kane science
“Thank you,” Kalani splashed a wave of water at him as she treaded water with a questioning tone. “Why should I thank you? For drowning me,” she yelled getting madder by the second. Kalani could feel her anxiety building with every second she was in the blackness of the cave. Her chest started to tighten as the adrenaline rush from running was starting to die away. What replaced it was panic. “We are not getting out of this Jarred. We should not have jumped.” Kalani’s voice was getting the shrll quality to it. The one where people started to become unpredictable because logic and reasoning was melting away into impulsivity and fear.
“Yes we will, this always has to lead somewhere. We will be fine we just have to be calm love. It’s never as bad as it seems I promise.” Jarred answered, looking around in the dim light he couldn’t deny it did seem a bit bleak. Still these cave systems always lead somewhere, he just had to hope this one lead somewhere they liked. “Just follow me Lani, well be fine just trust me love” Jarred said to her, but watched as she seemed to be growing more and more panic stricken as the moments went on.
“We need to get out of the water,” Kalani announced and randomly began swimming to the middle of the small lake. She had no reason to head in this direction. It was just the direction she was pointed in. “We need to get out of the water,” she kept repeating over and over with each stroke of her arms and kick of her legs. As she neared the center of the pool it became harder and harder to swim. Each stroke seemed to require twice the effort of the last one. For every foot she swam forward, Kalani lost half of that due to a thick current that was pulling her deeper into the darkness of the cave river.
“We will Lani, just stop come here…” Jarred said as he began to swim towards her. She wasn’t helping either of them and time was growing more bleak if she kept fighting to rip tide. Her strength would be all gone before they could ever get to safety. “Grab onto me Lani, trust me…” Jarred said, he was getting desperate himself but not for the same reasons. He knew if she lost all strength he might not be able to grab onto her before she got taking in by the tide and swept away. If that happened any of these rocks could be her doom.
Having grown up swimming in ocean’s Kalani knew that when caught in a rip current you swam parallel to the shore until you were past the line drawing you out to sea. If she had been thinking clearly, Kalani would have swam back towards Jarred and to the sides of the cavern where the suction was mild and manageable. Instead, she fought what she knew and reacted in fight syndrome exhausting her body as she swam nowhere. Instinct told her that this course of action would result in her drowning but the fear of being trapped her smothered all sane thought.
Ensign Kalani Kane
Pushing Jarred grabbed her, holding on tight he knew of only one thing to do to someone in a panic driven state like this. Coast guard and others said in times of emergency, if you had someone fighting you as you tried to save them you need to incapacitate them. He never thought he would need to do something like this but as he held onto her as she flailed in the water Jarred made the snap choice.
“Forgive me love…” he said as the strike came quick across her. Seldom did someone want to be known as the person who hit their lover, but in this state he needed her out cold so he could swim back with what little strength that he had left. Placing her over his shoulder he began to right the current back to the center of the lack, flowing and moving he watched to see where it was going to be going.
Up ahead he could see the right, it was a small passage but it was where it all lead to. It was where they would end up eventually, bracing himself he let his body go slightly limp to save strength as he held Kalani above water as he drifted, pushing against rocks to move them faster down as they began to pick up pace. Some people might have paid money to go on this right at a Six Flags or OMAP Universe, right now he was praying he made the right choice as he went through the hole and held his breath.
Falling was always a weird sensation, especially when you clinged to the one you love to keep them save as he went zooming downward. this time the water seemed to be far more at ease as he splashed down, quickly swimming up as he dragged Kalani with him as she began to stir.
The cave felt large and inviting here, stark contrast to where they were just at. Trees and sky could be seen as sandy ground and rocks could be seen around them. Finding the closest landing Jarred pushed Kalani up onto the encampment as he pulled himself up, checking her pulse he could see she was still alive but her breathing was deep and heavy.
“Lani…” he said gently as he began to take off the wet clothes she had on, or at least what little they had, to let them dry as he looked her over to see if there was any major lacerations or bruises over her body. “Come on Lani wake baby girl.” he said gently as he pressed his forehead up against hers, his heart was feeling heavy as he feared knocking her out to get to this point might have done more harm than good. Time would tell if he made the right choice or not.
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