elles_letters: (Perfect fit!YunJae)
[personal profile] elles_letters
Beta: Unbetaed
Rating: R/NC-17 later
Summary: Captain Jung Yunho of the USS Valiant wants nothing more than to take his ship out into deep space and leave the memories of Earth behind; however, when he and his crew come across a destroyed Borg cube and a drone in need of help, he finds himself battling old demons and unexpected emotions. In the end, it’s the drone, struggling to remember what it means to be human, who teaches him about forgiveness, healing and maybe even love.
Warnings: Violence and language. I just wanted to write a story about the Borg. OTL Fic takes place in the TNG/DS9/VOY-era.

chapter one | chapter two | chapter three | side story one | chapter four | chapter five | chapter six | chapter seven | chapter eight | chapter nine

Chapter 7: The Chase

It had taken less than 20 seconds for the people on the planet's surface to beam back on board.

"Red alert," Yunho ordered when his grim-faced crew made it to the bridge. He guided Jaejoong to a spot where he wouldn't be in the way as he took his place in his command chair. "Yuri, get us out of here. Any heading."

The helm officer nodded quickly and began laying in a course.

"Captain, the Rigas II colony is hailing us," Hyoyeon reported.

Yunho sighed. He doubted the colony's brusque leader had anything informative to say. "Put it through." The image of the scowling man popped up on the large view screen.

"What the hell is going on, Captain?" Eeteuk raged. "Your people weren't done down here."

"We've learned the Borg are on their way to these coordinates. Get everyone to safety."

At those words, Eeteuk's face froze in fear. "You're just abandoning us?"

"The Borg are still on their way, Park. Would you rather we stop them or wait for them to land on the planet before we try fighting them off?"

Eeteuk fumed slightly and motioned to someone off-screen. Before ending the message, he looked back and Yunho and smiled bitterly. "What did I tell you, Captain? Like a cockroach. If any of my people are harmed because of that bastard, I'll have your commission." The message cut off before Yunho could reply.

"Personally, I wouldn't be too upset if the Borg took him," Yoochun piped up. He and Changmin were hunched over the tactical station, heads close together as the worked to modify the Valiant's weapons systems.

"Me either," Yunho said under his breath.

"The Borg will not be interested in their colony," Jaejoong offered softly. "It's not technologically advanced enough."

"But it seems we are." Yunho turned in his chair. "Got anything, Ensign?"

"Long-range sensors have picked up the Borg cube, Captain," Jinki reported. "They'll be here in less than five minutes."

"Jaejoong, which direction are they coming from?"

The other man stood stock still, head cocked to the side, as he listened for the Collective.

"We ... we aren't sure, Captain. They are coming for this ship, though."

"That's enough for me." He turned in his chair and nodded at Yuri. "Lieutenant, you have my permission to push the engines as hard as you're able. Just get us out of here as fast as you can. "

Out of the corner of his eye, Yunho saw Jaejoong turn and bolt toward the turbolift. He shot up from his chair and grabbed his wrist before he could go too far.

"Where are you going?"

"We don't want to be here, Captain."

“But you're needed here.”

“Captain, we don’t think— ”

“That wasn’t a request. You will stay here and assist us. Understood?”

They stared each other down, Jaejoong's eyes pleading for Yunho to let him go. When it was obvious Yunho wasn't going to give in, he pulled his arm free and turned back to face the front view screen.

“Understood,”Jaejoong he answered, voice shaky.

Nodding his approval, Yunho took his place back in his command chair.

"The cube is now in visual range, Captain," Jinki informed him.

"Put it on screen." A moment later, the blackness of space filled the large viewer. At the center, a Borg cube could be seen hurtling past the surrounding stars. From what Yunho could tell, at the speed they were traveling, they'd catch up with their tiny ship in a matter of minutes.

"They're hailing us," Hyoyeon spoke up.

"Gee, I wonder what it could say?" Yoochun groused. "Play it."

Static whined over the ship's speakers before the forboding (and increasingly familiar) greeting piped through.

We are the Borg. Lower your shields and power down your weapons. Prepare to be assimilated. Resistance is futile.

"I'm getting real tired of being told that," Yoochun mumbled.

The message began playing again and Yunho motioned for Hyoyeon to cut it off. When he turned to look at Jaejoong, the former drone was staring at the view screen, his mind miles away, and was silently mouthing along with the disembodied voices.

"Jaejoong," he called, a warning edge to his voice. "Ignore them!" The other man either didn't or couldn't hear him; instead his entire being seemed entranced by the presence of the incoming ship. Yunho jumped up from his chair and stalked over to where he stood.

“Jaejoong, listen to me," he grabbed the other man by his shoulders and forced him to meet his gaze. He didn't attempt to hide the fear in his eyes or the shaking of his hands. "We need you. I need you! If you don’t help us, they will board this ship and they will assimilate us. All of us: Dr. Kim, Changmin, me, you. Everyone. You’ll be taken back to the Collective; you’ll lose every bit of your humanity you’ve gained back.” Yunho saw a flicker of panic flash through the former drone’s eyes before quickly disappearing underneath his dispassionate facade. “You have to do anything you can to help us,” he finished, nearly begging.

Jaejoong looked around the bridge as anxious crew members hurried to help defend the ship. Gathering his courage, he stood taller and looked Yunho in the eye. “I’ll try my best."

Yunho gave his shoulders a squeeze. "That's what I like to hear." He directed Jaejoong toward the tactical station. "See what you can do to assist Cmdr. Changmin. If you know of anything that can give us an advantage, tell him."

Jaejoong stood, peering over Yoochun's shoulder as he studied the ship's defense capabilities. It wasn't enough, he realized. Their defenses, their weapons, there was nothing they could do, no setting they could change that the Collective wouldn't be able to adapt to. To defeat. He looked up to see Yunho watching him from his command chair.

He'll be Borg, Jaejoong thought with dread. And the very idea of it nearly caused him to double over in anguish right where he stood.

"They're in weapons range," Changmin said calmly, and a moment later, the deck shook from the impact of the Borg fire. "Our shields are down 78 percent. No other damage to the ship."

Before Yunho could order him to return fire, the cube fired three more phaser shots. Yunho gripped the arms of his chair tightly in an effort not to get thrown from his seat. Come on, Jaejoong, his mind begged. Do something!

"We're now at 42 percent," Changmin reported again. "The ship is still not damaged. I believe it is safe to assume that the weapons fire is meant to destroy our defenses."

"Makes sense," Yoochun mumbled in reply, as he studied the ship's readings of their enemy's fire power. "If they want the ship, they're going to try and cause as little damage to it as they can."

"Fire something back, Commander," Yunho ordered.

Fingers flew across Changmin's screen and Yunho watched as three torpedoes fired from their ship toward the cube. All three exploded harmlessly at the edge of their shield bubble.

"No effect, Captain."

If the torpedoes, which were by far the most powerful weapon in their arsenal, couldn't blast through the Borg's shields, there was little hope that their phaser power would be able to do much harm, either. The cube shot at them again, jostling the crew.

Yunho glanced back at his second officer. "Changmin?"

"Shields are down to 23 percent. Another hit and we will lose them completely."

Almost as soon as Changmin spoke, the cube fired yet another shot. This one exploded off their bow and caused a violent cascade of energy to shoot out wildly as the force-field containing it dropped.

"Shields have failed. We're now flying defenseless. The cube is less than 1,000 kilometers off our port side."

Wasting no time, the Borg aimed a powerful tractor beam onto the ship. The deck shook again — violently and with such intensity that it threw members of the crew to the floor — and alarms went off on the bridge as the beam caused them to slam to a stop. The Valiant shuddered as its engines tried uselessly to propel it out of the Borg's grip.

"They've locked on to us, Captain," Yuri reported, voice panicked. "They're pulling us in." Indeed they were. A large docking bay — more than big enough to contain the small science vessel — opened up on the front of the cube. For a heart-stopping moment, Yunho could see clear inside the cube to where the sad remnants of ships that had been assimilated before them sat.

He swallowed the bile that had ridden in his throat and turned back to the tactical station. "Jaejoong, feel free to assist us at any time," he shouted. Jaejoong didn't answer. He stared at the cube on the screen, eyes wide with fear.

"Jaejoong!" Yunho shouted again over the din. "We're desperate here. Please!"

The other man whipped his head around to look at him. His eyes widened even more and then … something in him changed. The fear drained from his eyes, his face, his entire body, and in its place came a cold and distant apathy. Yunho could have sworn it was the drone, One of Five, standing on his bridge. His movements — which had always been a little awkward as Jaejoong adjusted to his Human body — seemed to morph. He strode confidently (robotically, Yunho thought in horror) past him, to the front of the bridge. Yunho felt a prickle of apprehension run up his spine as he watched Jaejoong approach Yuri's station and insert his assimilation tubules into the screen. The ship ceased its futile fight against the pull of the tractor beam, and a moment later, the bridge lights dimmed and blinked before they cut off completely, surrounding the crew in black darkness.


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