Captain’s Log, Stardate 08082021.8

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We were on the edge of Federation space, observing the Cordovo nebula when we detected a previously unknown planet within the nebula. Current scientific understanding of nebulas seem to indicate that planets shouldn’t be able to form within nebulas. Looking to further learn about the planet, our crew took a shuttle craft to this Class Y type planet to explore.

Once on the surface, chief engineer Noah found himself ensnared in some rather large spider webbing. I ran over to free Noah when I realized that first officer Bella was missing.

In the distance, I hear faint screams for assistance. Noah and I run over to find Bella has also been ensnared by the rather large spider webbing prevalent on the planet. As I set Bella free, I heard a loud rumbling in the distance. I looked over to see and seen shape of what could only be described as a large arachnid. I alerted my crew and we began to flee using a large vine to swing across a large chasm in an attempt to escape.

As captain, I was resolved to allow my crewman to cross ahead of me despite my fear. The large arachnid got ever closer as I watched my crew cross one at at time. I could hear the footsteps closing to within a few meters of my position when I was finally able to swing across.

Our tricorders were having trouble determining the location of our shuttlecraft. My chief engineer had to go up to a high point on the planet in order to amply our signal. Shortly thereafter, our scanners began to function properly and we made our way back to the shuttlecraft and left the planet.

Back on the ship (at home), I received a subspace communication from Captain Cassandra. It was her birthday and wanted to rendezvous at Starbase 223 to celebrate the occasion. I was a bit reluctant given that we don’t talk much nor do we have much in common. I attempted to ascertain who else would be showing up for her birthday and eventually realized that her only other friend, Pam, wasn’t going to be there. With a bit of hesitation, I agreed to treat her for her birthday.

I usually enjoy talking with other people in order to get their unique perspective on life. Cassandra is still a bit young (and possibly developmentally delayed) and I found myself trying to comfort her about the loss of her dad and sister. I may have been a tad too playful at moments because of the tangential nature of conversing with her. One moment we’re talking about her dad, next moment shes remarking about some guy at the bar and another moment about my kids in the span of a minute or so. Soon enough, the Starbase promenade (the restaurant) closes and I send her via shuttlecraft back to her ship.

I send out a subspace communication to Captain Eric and we talk at length. The conversation started out great. He finally was a lot more straightforward with me. The conversation lasted nearly 4 hours. Our interactions always have the same trajectory; it starts out so well and slowly devolves. He’s incredibly smart but seems to use what he knows to both teach and purposely hurt me. It’s almost ironic because the way he carries himself you wouldn’t think there was much at all to him. I have to remember to keep my distance from him because he can easily outmaneuver me. Yet, I almost feel compelled to meet him in person. I know it can’t work and there would be nothing accomplished. My instinct says don’t and I’m inclined to listen to that as he scares me. I don’t know if I will be able to resist and that scares me.

One thing I can say I’ve learned being out here as captain of my own ship is that I have far less control than I used to believe. I touched on this during a previous entry, but I feel like I’m piloting a sailboat across the ocean. I used to think that having an in-depth understanding of the ocean and the boat would ensure a successful voyage across the sea. Now, I realize that I am at the mercy of forces much stronger and much more complex than I first anticipated. The ocean and wind function at a level that a mere sailor can’t possibly fully understand; much less hope to control. I find myself being being moved about in a seemingly random direction. I’ve resolved to do my best to make course adjustments and hope it is sufficient to get me to my final destination…a place I’m not even sure exists…and as I proceed further along into the ocean, I feel like it has a mind of its own..sometimes it seems like it’s upset at me even daring to sail on it and other times, it seems to provide a beautiful current and view that heartens me during choppy waters.

Credit: Joseph Barrientos

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