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Co-Writer Paul Robison*
  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
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Intro 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Paul Robison
Nov 16, 2017
4 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!st3jPhabmFG0SrU54sfWposted on PENANA

The Esmeralda continued her mission.  Things didn't get better, but at least they didn't get worse, either.  The crew got used to its new captain, and duties were performed efficiently.copyright protection16PENANAYT1QUANHMT

Gordon and Finn spent much of their free time together, sometimes over Scotch and brandy, mostly, as today, in a rec room over coffee, talking softly, not to be heard by the Vulcan, who was bent over a library-computer outlet in a far corner, as he always seemed to be in odd moments, even when eating.  Finn looked back from Gordon and met the engineer's eyes. "Tony, I just realized, I haven't thought about Tom Sawyer almost a week."copyright protection16PENANAuenyxdQHoc

"Yes, Doctor, I find myself doing that too---forgetting.  The memorial service last months seemed to put an end for my hope of ever finding him, or hearing of him again."copyright protection16PENANAn4cgw6lAyB

"I guess that was it," Finn agreed moodily, staring down into his cup.  He heaved a sigh.  "If only we knew what'd happened.  Then we could accept it."copyright protection16PENANAxxuynp9b6V

"Yes."  Tony sipped his coffee, lost in thought.copyright protection16PENANA4B9saHF0p3

Suddenly, Spock seemed to stiffen over the computer.  Finn saw him shudder.copyright protection16PENANAcM8p2Ewof4

After a long moment Spock rose with the prose of Vulcan control and came to them.  "I have just confirmed that Tom is trapped in Earth's past," he said. "I have believed it since he vanished.  A telepathic impression, not suitable for evidence.  The Psychlos took him and-----used the Encephlobasher.  Learned the secret of the Land of the Lost's time doorways.  I believe Tom had escaped Qlom there and tried to reach Victoria.  I sensed, beginning with periods near the 1930s.  He is in the 1950s, and he is insane."copyright protection16PENANAZNBulZTva0

Spock closed his eyes, opened them, and stared unblinkingly at Finn.  "I have known this part ever since the night Tom disappeared.  Doctor, I heard him crying to me---for help---in my mind.  I could do nothing to help him."copyright protection16PENANAqfBzHLgnMG

Finn flared, "Why the hell didn't you tell me?"copyright protection16PENANAqZszoueUSt

Spock winced ever so slightly. "You would not have believed me, Doctor."copyright protection16PENANAZShBnDAh8L

Finn's mouth, which had been open to shout at him again, closed.  A look of sadness, of understanding compassion, crossed his craggy features.  "No," he said softly. "No, I wouldn't have."copyright protection16PENANAiy0T8IFp5s

Then Spock showed him the pictures.copyright protection16PENANA5wrx6Q2kLV

Much later, the door of Finn's quarters swished open to reveal Captain Spock.copyright protection16PENANAOLO5mcIXtQ

"May I talk to you, Doctor?"copyright protection16PENANAJLpKFxslWy

"Of course, Bal.  Come in," Finn said gently.copyright protection16PENANAN24ezb5CvQ

"I regret to disturb you, Doctor.  I know you need to be rested and ready for the events ahead.  However, I wish to----to explain...."copyright protection16PENANAxkBmpYy8V1

"Bal, you don't have to explain anything to me.  I understand.  You did what you thought was right.  I've told you that repeatedly."copyright protection16PENANAYENootVROS

"But still, I wish.....I must be sure you know why I acted as I did," Spock insisted.copyright protection16PENANApBUuQuGV6b

Finn smiled. "Spock, we've known each other a long time.  Don't you know by now that I know some things about you?  Once I realized what you'd learned about Tom, when I finally got through my thick skull what it was you were living with, don't you think I understood?  My God, Bal!  What I can't understand is why you didn't break.  I would have----I couldn't have gone on like you did.  I should've known something was wrong, but I was too pigheaded to see it.  Now I know you were making us all hate you so that we wouldn't think about Tom so much.  I'm the one who should've come to you.  I'm the one who should say 'I'm sorry.'"copyright protection16PENANALEvn0Vly3h

"That is not necessary, Doctor.  You acted as would any Human who has suffered a great loss. I knew that, I only regret that I...."copyright protection16PENANAA2WoqlRmcF

"Look, Spock, let's forget it.  We have a big job ahead of us.  Let's concentrate on that now," Finn broke in.copyright protection16PENANAeCh877CN2I

"Agreed.  One more thing, though----Bones.  He may not be dead.  He might be better off if he were dead.  I have told you what the Encephalobasher can do.  He has been living in primitive conditions for over a year.  He could not have received proper care.  I have checked and found that the care given mental patients in those times was most limited.  There is a very great chance that he has not received any care at all.  If he is alive, you must prepare yourself for this:  he will not be the Tom Sawyer you and I once knew."copyright protection16PENANAZOnvcnrxVv

"I know that, Bal.  I've known it ever since you told us those Psychlos used the Encephalobasher on him.  I can face it----now.  I just have to know, to know whether he's alive or dead.  If he's alive, we'll bring him back and he'll receive the best care our technology can give him.   If he is----dead, and we can prove it, we'll know it's so and can learn to accept the fact."  Finn sat quietly for a moment, lost in his thoughts; then he looked up at Spock and smiled, "Spock," he said, "I'm glad you came.  I've wanted to tell you----to thank you----for not letting me transfer off the Esmeralda.  I hope we can forget this past year.  I'm trying to.  It's foolish for us to dwell on it."copyright protection16PENANAPwyLUY6Llj

"I agree, Doctor.  It would be----illogical."  A smile quirked the corner of Spock's mouth.copyright protection16PENANArzWII3QkRT

"I thought you'd say that, Mr. Spock!" And Huckleberry Finn laughed, the first time he'd done so in over a year.copyright protection16PENANA3RHqmUOOsJ

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