Prologue: A Not so Random Omnipotent Bastard

There are a lot of things that I would've never thought would happen to me in my lifetime, me being one of the programmers who helped code the first turingrade A.I being one of them, and yes, if you're wondering we did end up naming him Alan, though I very enthusiastically pushed for him to be named Skynet or SHODAN, both names were rejected out of hand, due to what I grudgingly admit are fairly valid reasons, reasons such as, and I quote: 'we don't want it to get ideas John' and 'what the fuck is wrong with you?!'.

Now, being a member of the team, which made what was arguably the greatest achievement of the twenty-first century a possibility, was high up there on the list of things that I as a Comp-Sci major didn't expect, on the other hand, my very extreme surprise at that fact paled in comparison to what I was experiencing now.

You see, of all the things, I, a reasonably sane and grounded human would've expected to ever see, a young John de Lancie wearing Jedi robes and standing in what I could only describe as an unending grey Limbo was very much not one of them.

"I'm going to assume that I took some bad acid earlier today.", I said my expression fixed to resemble that of a bored security guard, though inwardly I'm not ashamed to admit I was panicking.

De Lancie snorted and in a very familiar condescending tone that I was really hoping not to hear said: "I'm afraid your primitive monkey-brain couldn't even conceive what it was seeing, with or without the aid of hallucinogens, so I'm afraid your first guess is wrong, pity that I thought you were relatively smart."

'Relatively' said in such a way that made clear he didn't think highly of humans.

"Q?", I hedged, barely cognizant of how stupid the idea that a god from a fictional universe was standing right in front of me would've sounded to anyone, let alone one of my colleagues from the University.

"Ding, ding, ding, we have a winner!", the now definitively identified Q said sarcastically yet somehow excitedly at the same time as colorful strobe lights and confetti appeared from out of nowhere to accentuate his point.

"W-where am I?", I finally asked. Normally I would've been snarky as hell, but under the circumstances, I didn't think a little meek humility would hurt my chances.

"Seriously! That's what you think to ask, no, 'Star Trek is real?', or 'Why John de Lancie of all people?'", he said, but before I could interject with "I've heard about Parallel Universes" and "I'm guessing Gene Roddenberry's casting choices" respectively, he continued.

"You're in, well, let's call it the Void, a sort of space between different Multiverses in the greater Omniverse, though it's not really 'space' as you would understand it…", he trailed off here for a second before getting back on track, "At any rate bucko, you died and I'm here to make you a once in a death-time limited offer, so what do you say?"

I blinked hard for a solid second, then did it a second time until my thoughts were finally in order, "You know, that's an awful lot to spring on a guy.", I said.

Q snorted derisively again, "It's two bits of information monkey-brain, you died, and I have an offer for you."

"I mean, yeah, but that gives me more questions than answers, for starters how did I die and what could you possibly be offering?", for my latter question I had a sneaking suspicion of what it was.

He shook his head and rubbed his nose in the perfect impersonation of a parent whose kid had asked a very dumb question for the umpteenth time.

"Aneurysm, go to my home universe, that clear enough for you monkey-brain?", he said sounding out each syllable, which somehow annoyed me more than the nickname he came up with for me.

"Just one more question", I said, not bothering to hide my dislike for the omnipotent tsundere behind a bored façade anymore.

He rolled his eyes in irritation as if to say, 'well, get on with it?'

"Why I mean why send someone there at all, and why me specifically?", I asked legitimately curious.

He looked thoughtful at that, though whether he didn't know the answer or was just wondering how much he wanted me to know I couldn't say, "I'm guessing you already know about my self-appointed task?", he asked me with an inscrutable expression.

I nodded and I wasn't lying either. It was a fan-theory that got kicked around for a while, that Q was actually looking out for humanity through his own twisted but fairly effective 'exposure therapy', the idea was that he exposed The Enterprise to himself and the Borg in order to get the Federation to prepare for war with the Cardassians and the Dominion, a war which they would've lost if they hadn't militarized thanks to Q.

"Well, since you do actually know-", the fact that he could read my mind discomforted me more than it should have under the circumstances, "I suppose there's no harm in telling you, I need you to do my job for me, in your little TV-Show my plan works out and the Dominion loses, in my home universe however…"

He didn't bother to finish his sentence, he didn't need to either, the implications were clear enough on their own.

"You didn't answer the second question though, why choose me?"

"Tut, tut, tut mon ami, all good things to those who wait.", he said with an infuriatingly smug grin, "you forget I'm not under any obligation to answer you, but let's just say knowing what I know about you I suspect you'll make it interesting."

I accepted his explanation with a nod but grit my teeth all the same. I hated being bent over a barrel and patronized by someone with a passion, even if that someone happened to be omnipotent it seems.

"I accept, but I have one last question", I said and unlike his earlier snark, he put on a haughty expression and indulged me.

"What race am I going to be?", I asked and hoped I didn't just give him a wonderful terrible idea.

He laughed, "I think it'll be more fun when you find out for yourself, ta, ta.", he snapped his fingers as the same blinding light and sound-effect from the show enveloped me.

"taHqeq!", I cursed at him in Klingon, under the circumstances of what I was dreading the most it seemed appropriate.