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Story Notes:

Sixth part in the Three equal sides series.







I was dreaming.


Vulcans need much less sleep than humans, therefore most of our sleep is REM. We need to compensate for our waking control.


My dream is often the same. Like the grain of grit inside a crystal, around which the solution coalesced, there is a core event in each life, giving it its structure. To know the core is to know the essential of oneself. The crystal keeps developing into new formations accreted to the core, but the core gives the crystal its form from the inside.


My core structure is difference.


I’m a half-breed.


In the whole universe, there is no community of beings like me to support me.


I am alone.


I have been loved and hated– like everybody else. I still am. But it’s a little different, because *I* am different.


This difference makes everything feel like a fight.


I hate fighting. It’s the ultimate negation of community.


Yet fight I must, if nothing else to affirm to myself that even I, the mongrel, have a place in the order of things.




I was dreaming, and my dreams went backwards in time.


I was once again sitting in my room at Starfleet Academy. Students of many races came in to ask me questions about my lessons or deliver their tests. I didn’t have them sitting across the desk. I gestured them to sit at the side. Yet I remained separate. None of them was alone like I was.


I was once again standing in front of the Council board in the Vulcan Science Academy. They sat behind their high benches, looking down. I wore the sweater my mother had knitted for me. I turned my back on them when they showed me how much they wished they could turn their back on me, and once again, I was alone.


I was among my schoolmates. I was at the same time a child and an adult, and so were they, in the illogic of dreams. They spoke out their despise for my mother and me and at the same time they didn’t speak, but it was loud all the same. They surrounded me, a compact group against the intruder. One with no group of his own. One with no companions. They watched me and they didn’t see me, but their sight robbed me of my own and I could not look back at them. I felt myself disappear under their accusing eyes. The-One-Who-Should-Not-Exist. The-One-Who-Doesn’t-Exist.


The same, always the same.


I was dreaming, and I could not breathe.




But this time something changes in my dream. There is a touch on either side of me, and there, in the middle of the circle of hate, at my sides, now there are two others. I take a breath, and I raise my eyes, and there they are, my Nyota on my right, my Jim on my left. My comrades, my companions, my mates. Together we look the enemy in the eye and tighten in a group of our own, and who can resist us?


I wake up, and they are here. Jim is stroking my face in long passes, from my temple down my ear and cheek and chin, his eyes unusually shining. Nyota holds my arm tight on her chest and grazes her lips along my fingers. Her cheeks are damp.


I feel my breathing calming down, my heartbeat slowing. I roll on my back, pick their hands and bring the fingers to my lips, then stretch them open and put them on my face, covering my eyes. I smell the minute scents on their palms, listen to their human hearts deep inside their chests next to me, and finally I know.


I am not alone anymore.



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