LIVING IN HOPE
Story by Sheena Ainsbury and Marina Bailey.
Based on a premise from Space 1999.
Written by Marina Bailey.
Beverly's Journal, Day 4
As far as I can remember, I do not belong here, not with Will. Where do
we come from? When we awoke here, all I knew was his name, and that we
were together somehow, but pieces of the puzzle are missing. I realise
that I'm not supposed to have these... dreams... but they're there. The
Others, those that watch us, don't want us to dream of anything from
Before, I know. They're waiting to see if we produce any children. For
some reason it's important to them. Yesterday Will asked what they
wanted, and they actually told him! You two have compatible genetic
bases, they said. You will produce excellent offspring.
Offspring! When they said that I had a memory... of a young man,
maybe 16, 17 years old. He was wearing red and black, going, Oh, Mom...
Who is he? Somehow, I feel I'm his mother and he's my son, but I have no
memory except that one image. Dammit! I know I'm not supposed to be here,
not with Will, not like this. I know he feels it too, because he paces
around like a caged animal. LIKE A CAGED ANIMAL! That's it, I think.
We're caged. We're part of a breeding program. They gave us all we could
want: food, clothing, warmth, even paper to contain our thoughts. To
contain us, maybe.
I know there's no way off this island... if you can call it that.
There are forcefields surrounding us, and outside the air is toxic.
There's nowhere to escape TO, even if we could. Will's checked every inch
of this damn island and nothing. Only food, water, and the occasional
Other who watches us and tries to reassure us. They want our cooperation.
I wonder what they'd do if we didn't cooperate?
*** *** ***
Will Riker gave Beverly a piece of ripe yellow fruit. "Here, try this."
"Thanks." Beverly took a bite, then turned and faced him. "Still
"Nope. All I have are some vague memories of some other place."
"Will!" Beverly tried to silence Riker, in case the aliens were
watching. But Riker shook his head. "Somehow, I can tell when they're
watching. I think they have to be here physically to watch us properly,
and some sixth sense alerts me. They're not here now."
"I have memories too. Dreams. I have a child somewhere. He's tall,
he's wearing a red and black uniform of some kind, and he has brown
"What?" asked Riker.
"Yeah. Brown eyes."
"No, not that. You said... a red and black uniform?"
"I once wore one like that. Red and black. And I'd stand on the...
the... wherever... and say, 'Yes, Sir.' To a balding man with an air of
Beverly was staring off into the distance. "Did he have hazel eyes?"
"The man, the one in authority. Did he have hazel eyes?"
"I think so, why?"
"I know him. His name... I can't remember. We called him Captain."
"Beverly, do you think we've been kidnapped?"
Crusher nodded vigorously. "Oh, yeah. They've messed with our
memories, but not enough. We're supposed to be content and produce lots
of children, but..."
"Our real lives get in..." Riker's face went blank. "They're here."
Beverly was suddenly seized by a fierce desire for this man sitting
next to her, an unnatural one. She didn't know how she knew that, but she
did. "I know," she said.
Will leaned over and kissed her, undoing the belt on the gown she
wore. They both wore them; functional clothing for a species with
modesty. Beverly kissed him back fiercely, feeling helpless to do
And on another island, Deanna Troi was saying to the man with her, "I
feel... strange. We're not supposed to be here."
The man took her hand gently. "Deanna, I know that. But I'd welcome
any suggestions you have as to how we get out."
"Obviously, we can't." Then a look of panic came over her face. "I
feel it again."
"Other people?" asked Picard.
"Yes. Their emotions are very... confused. I don't think they're
supposed to be here, either."
"They've been kidnapped as well?"
"I know them, Jean-Luc. I know them! I..." The empath jumped up
suddenly. "Imzadi!" she cried.
Picard stood up too. "What does that mean?"
"It means... it means... I can't remember." She went into Picard's
arms and hugged him tightly. "But I felt him, then. Here." She put her
hands over her heart. "With me. In me. He doesn't like what we're doing.
He wants to escape."
Picard looked down at her tenderly. "It seems we concur on that."
The aliens were arguing. "They have not produced offspring yet. And they
are getting their memories into focus once more."
"These humanoids take a long time to produce offspring," one pointed
out, clicking in its own language. "We knew that when we took them from
the ship the first time."
"Yes, when we brought them into our world. But this is in their
space, and our techniques do not work as well."
"You said the humanoid Riker remembered nothing," the alien said
angrily. "Yet now he remembers the ship and his captain, and the humanoid
female senses him."
"It will improve. Once the offspring have taken root we can grow
them here. We can even send the adults back to the ship."
"They will get their memories back before that, you know they will.
And then they will not attempt to produce offspring again."
"I can unfocus their memories again."
The second alien held its 'hands' close to the other's face. "Then
do it. We need those offspring to continue our research. Make sure we get
The other nodded, frightened for its life.
Beverly's Journal, Day 53
On and on it goes, day by day. At least now I remember my son's name.
Wesley. But not the captain's, though I can see his face in my dreams.
I think he is Wesley's father, but something in me feels disloyal
thinking it. And I see stars, daily. Here the weather is constant, but
when I close my eyes, I see stars. Sometimes they streak past, just
flashes, and at other time they're almost still. And I long to be in the
place where stars can be still or streak past. I long to be with him, the
*** *** ***
Beverly looked questioningly at Will. He shook his head, and she relaxed
visibly. "Will, what if I do get pregnant?"
Riker frowned. "It's what they want," he said.
"I know. I won't let them get it."
Riker pulled her around to face him, gripped her by the arms.
"Beverly, how do we know that they won't put us to sleep one day and...
take the baby away? They'd probably know about it straight away."
"I'm starting to get a feel for them, a little anyway, and I'm
telling you, I think they expect us to lay eggs or something."
"You mean they don't know how we reproduce?"
"Only with those medical exams, like the time those other aliens cut
your arm off, remember?"
"Yeah..." mused Riker, then brought himself up. "Yeah! I do
remember! Those noises, that lab - I think it's the same aliens... and
Data was reciting poetry about his cat, and..."
"The android on the Enterprise!"
Beverly Crusher and William T. Riker looked into each other's eyes
and knew. Will let his arms drop. "Oh, boy. Oh, boy, oh, boy, oh boy."
The aliens were arguing again. Lately it seemed that all they did was
argue about the humans. "They have not reproduced."
"Maybe they are not capable."
"Impossible. We tested them thoroughly."
The second alien, who was in charge of the experiment, clicked
menacingly. "Perhaps we should rearrange them."
"There must be a male and female for reproduction to take place."
"We will change the males, that is all."
"I do not think it would be wise."
"Perhaps not. But I do think so, and my wishes will be carried out."
Suddenly, Will Riker disappeared, and Beverly Crusher found herself alone
with Jean-Luc Picard. She felt that the aliens had done this to prevent
them from working together to escape, now that they knew they had gotten
their memories back. Because the way Jean-Luc was looking at her, he did
not have his back yet.
"Jean-Luc, are you all right?"
Although he'd said her name, the doctor knew that Picard had no idea
who she was. "Jean-Luc, do you know who I am?"
"The woman I love," he replied, smiling a too-vacant smile. He
doesn't even know that he's with someone different, thought Beverly. It
scared her, what these aliens could do, and yet she knew they were not
as powerful as they thought, if she and Will had retrieved their
memories. She tried to organise her thoughts, even as the imposed wanting
took possession of her again. She knew it was unnatural, she knew it was
the aliens, but somehow this time it felt... right.
Beverly's Journal, Day 91
I'm with Jean-Luc again, but this time I cannot say who I am. He needs
to come to that realisation by himself. He needs to get his memories
back, but they're taking longer than they did with me and Will. I'm
frightened, because I keep thinking that very soon I will have a baby,
and the aliens will have won.
Will says that they're the same aliens who kidnapped him before, the
ones who severed his arm. I don't find it difficult to believe. Now
they're becoming more insidious, planning more carefully. They want to
learn about us another way... by making us breed and examining our
children. If I had to lose Wesley to a Starfleet career and deny him his
father, I can't lose another child, not to aliens. Not this time. I'm
telling Jean-Luc everything.
*** *** ***
Beverly did. Jean-Luc Picard knew it was all true, but somehow his
memories wouldn't come. "Beverly, isn't it enough just to be with me, and
The doctor wasn't used to those kinds of platitudes from the man she
loved. The man she had not told about Wesley because he'd been so
independent. He'd never NEEDED her, not really. He still didn't, no
matter how much he protested otherwise. She wanted the real Jean-Luc
back, and now it didn't matter if he ended up loving her or not. Just
bring him back to me, she'd sometimes think at the sky.
Deanna Troi smiled at Will Riker. "Well, it's happened."
"Deanna, I love you, but you know we can't stay here and let the
aliens get our child."
"Imzadi, they won't. I can... sense them now. More than you can.
Beverly was right - they expect us to lay eggs. With your help I
remembered, and I'm sure the captain will too. If we don't cooperate,
they might release us."
"How do we not cooperate?"
"We refuse to do anything they want us to. We'll ignore each other,
ignore whatever might further their ends."
"Isn't that dangerous?"
"I don't know. But I know that if we don't try something, we'll be
here forever. I feel it."
"Do you think Captain Picard and Beverly will try?"
"I don't know. I hope so."
"We have to refuse to cooperate. Maybe then they'll release us."
"It might work," said Picard, a bit too half-heartedly for Crusher's
"If I know Will Riker - and thanks to these aliens, I do - he and
Deanna will try it. So we must, too."
"I will if you recommend it," answered Picard, more to please her
than because he wanted to. Without his memories, without his sense of
SELF, he was content on this island. But to make Beverly content, he'd
try whatever she wanted to.
"They have not spoken to each other to 78 hours," the first alien was
saying. "They have not eaten enough to remain healthy. They have not
mated. It is not working."
"You bumbling fool!" raged the second alien. "They wish to escape.
They are tired of it all. And, frankly, so am I."
"We need offspring."
"If they are ignoring the impulses we provide, there is nothing we
can do without removing them to our lab and testing them again. Further
tests could kill them."
"What difference does it make?" asked the first alien. "We can
always get more."
"If they die it will invalidate our work. This species is not like
other species. They are all different. If we got new ones, we would have
to begin again, and I am not going to report to our superiors that we
cannot control this species, are you?"
The alien stepped back, frightened. It knew who would be blamed if
they had to report such a thing. "What do you suggest?"
"We return them, and our report says we learned all we could.
Obviously this species does not breed in captivity. We will ask for
funding to capture juvenile specimens, and maybe our results will be
"As you wish."
Medical Log, Stardate 63218.5
According to Commander Data, we were missing from the Enterprise for only
20 Standard days, but according to the tests I ran on the metabolisms of
myself, Commander Riker, Counselor Troi and Captain Picard, in subjective
time we were missing for almost three months. Apparently these aliens can
warp time as well as space for their needs. From what we learnt, they
don't exist in the same time/space frame as us. They're trying to cross
over, to find out about species from this frame. We can only hope they
As for us, we haven't suffered any ill effects from our stay on the
aliens' manufactured islands, although Captain Picard's memory only
returned once we returned to the Enterprise. Deanna Troi is pregnant -
impossible, since the ship's chronometer shows us to have been gone only
20 days. I think I am, too, but have yet to run the test.
*** *** ***
Deanna smiled at Beverly as she got off the biobed. "So?"
"You're fine. The baby's fine too."
"How far... I mean, who..." Deanna couldn't finish the sentence.
Crusher smiled indulgently. She knew the question; it had been on
her mind too. "If you're asking who the father is, I think it's Will.
They changed Will and Jean-Luc around on the 54th day we were there, and
you're not even a month along yet, so I'm fairly certain." The doctor was
highly amused at the relieved expression on her friend's face, although
she didn't understand the reason for her mirth.
"What about you?" Deanna asked, looking concerned.
"Same. I think it's the captain's."
"Will we know for sure?"
"Yes, we can run diagnostics once the babies are born."
"Beverly, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't happy about the baby.
Will's been walking around grinning ever since we got back. But what
about you? I sense... trepidation."
The doctor sighed. "I don't know, Deanna. Jean-Luc has never...
needed a family. I don't want to force him to be something he shouldn't."
Deanna was surprised. "You haven't told him, have you?"
"No. You know as well as I do that he'd like to forget what happened
and go on."
"You have to tell him."
Captain Jean-Luc Picard sat in his quarters listening to music, trying
to blot the events of the previous months out of his mind. The problem
was, he couldn't. Every time he closed his eyes he could see Deanna Troi
in his mind, and it embarrassed him so much he could hardly stand it.
Then he'd close his eyes and see Beverly. Which was even worse, because
it didn't embarrass him, it... he wanted her. He'd been forced to 'love'
her on the island, he knew. He'd felt like that about Deanna, too. That
had been the aliens. But now that he'd felt it once for Beverly, he knew
he'd always felt it, inside. And he knew it wouldn't go away. This was
the real thing. It scared him, to love someone so much.
His door chime sounded. "Come."
The door opened to reveal the person he'd been thinking about. It
was all Jean-Luc could do not to run to her and tell her how he felt. But
it wasn't his style, and he didn't know how she'd react. "You busy?" she
"No, I'm just..." He laughed nervously. "I was thinking about our
"Yeah, I think we've all been doing that." Beverly sat down on the
couch next to him. "Jean-Luc, there's something I have to tell you..."
Then the Red Alert sounded. (Just kidding...)
Picard took her hands, carefully. "I'm listening."
"I'm pregnant too."
"The aliens' experiment worked," Picard said.
"It worked. You're the father." Somehow, Picard had expected that,
and yet he wondered how Beverly - or Deanna, for that matter - could be
so sure. He said as much.
"Jean-Luc, I'm a doctor. I kept notes. You and I - and Will and
Deanna - were together for 37 days. And as far as I can figure, we're
almost a month along, both of us."
"Beverly, I - "
But Crusher interrupted. "No, Jean-Luc, it's okay. I know you have
responsibilities. I've brought up one child alone, I can do it again."
"But - "
"It doesn't matter. I'm not one of those people who can take a
hypospray and get rid of the problem. I DO love you, and I will keep your
child. It's all ri -- "
"Beverly, I love you." Picard said, suddenly, realising that trying
to be reasonable was not working. Apparently Beverly had taken lessons
from Kate Pulaski on interrupting him. Well, two could play at that game.
Beverly looked totally stunned. "Wh... what?" She could hardly
believe what she had heard.
"I love you. I always did. The aliens tried to force the feeling,
but when I felt it for you, I knew it had always been there. And it
always will be."
"It's not so simple, Jean-Luc," the doctor said, refusing to let
"It is. It's as simple as that, believe me."
"I... It can't be... maybe your memory isn't..." Beverly got up and
backed towards the door.
Picard stood in the way, blocking her exit. "No."
Beverly was suddenly frightened, and she didn't know why. "Jean-Luc,
please get out of my way."
"No. I love you, and you're going to stay right here." Picard
realised that while they had been together many times on the island, they
had never been together while in command of their faculties... those
times on Earth so long ago didn't count... they had had youth as an
excuse. Picard saw Crusher's fright, and realised in a flash what it was.
"Beverly, Jack is gone. I'm here now. Were you always afraid that I'd
love you? Did you think I'd leave you again?"
Beverly looked at him, saw the truth of his words. "I... yeah. You
left me, but I had Jack. Then, after he died I found it easy to blame
you. I blamed you for letting me bring Wesley up alone."
"I couldn't help that. His father was dead."
"No, you weren't!" she cried suddenly. "You weren't dead! I was too
scared to say anything, I felt that I'd betrayed my child by keeping the
truth from him, but it was..."
"I never suspected, but I'm not surprised." Picard wrapped his arms
around Beverly. "I promise you, I won't leave you. We'll be together
"I nearly left him for you, what makes you think I won't do the
same, what makes you think I won't meet someone, why..." Picard knew
Beverly was just as afraid of her own flaws as his, but he knew all she
was saying, so he silenced her with a kiss. When it was over, she looked
up at him questioningly. "Do you think we can make it, Jean-Luc? Honestly
Picard did. He'd never needed anyone, he'd thought. How silly he'd
been. And how much happiness had he lost thinking it? "We can make it."
"We can't tell Wesley."
"I wouldn't expect us to. I think he knows, in a way. He wants me
to be proud of him. And I am."
Deanna Troi and Will Riker were lying together in his quarters, listening
to jazz. "Deanna, what brought us to this juncture?" the first officer
"I don't know, Will. I think that, in some fashion, we should thank
"It was worth it, to have you admit that you loved me."
"I always loved you, imzadi."
"I know. Just like I've always loved you."
Nothing more needed to be said.
Beverly Crusher. Personal Log. Stardate 63237.9.
The captain and I have come to our own understanding. No more evasions,
no more pretending that what we have doesn't exist. It's a good feeling.
I can't do anything about Wesley; we both realised it's too late for
that. I want to honour Jack's memory. I did love him, and he loved me.
But I always loved Jean-Luc, somewhere deep inside. And I hoped he loved
me. Now my hopes came true.
*** *** ***
Doctor Selar held the baby up. "It's a girl, Captain, just as we said."
She seemed to be smiling, though Picard would never embarrass her by
intimating anything of the sort. Beverly looked at the baby, then at him.
"She's beautiful, isn't she?"
Picard could hardly speak, so moved was he. "Yes."
"A playmate for Deanna and Will's baby."
"A playmate for Andrew, yes." Picard could do little but repeat what
"Doctor?" asked Selar. "Do you have a name picked out?"
The captain and the doctor looked at each other, and Beverly smiled.
"Yes," Picard began.
"Hope," finished Beverly.
The aliens mentioned in this story originated in the sixth season episode "Schisms".
Copyright Marina Bailey, September 1993.