Paradise Lost

By KayCee1951

Year be springing or year be falling,

The bark will drip and the birds be calling.

There's much that's fine to see and hear

In the spring of a year, in the fall of a year.

'Tis not love's going hurts my days,

But that it went in little ways.

"The Spring and the Fall" by Edna St. Vincent Millay (last verse)

Chapter One:

2286

With a light cover stretched over her and her shawl around her shoulders, Christine sat in the chaise at the end of the pier. The sunlight had faded behind Mount Tam leaving a vista of perfectly proportioned sky-blue pink on the horizon. She had languished there for more than an hour already. This activity, or lack thereof, was a funeral of sorts – a final goodbye.

Their physical contact would only be missed, but it was the loss of the intimacy of ordinary moments for which she mourned.

Having exhausted all the tears weeping over a life that might have been, she was inert, like a mausoleum angel grieving over the crypt of a child. Had that slender, delicate thread snapped and broken the moment he died, she might have grieved less. Somewhere between his dying in the reactor room of Enterprise and his revival on Vulcan, their harmony had simply faded, slowly. No matter how tightly she tried to hold onto it, she felt every second of its slipping away. And then it was gone.

His katra, the sum of all his memories and experience, had been degraded; his memories corrupted, his experiences scattered.

She was now the sole keeper of a love that would never be known and would never grow as it could have; alive only in the depths of her mind, the breadth of her heart, the height of her soul.

He had asked her a question. Now, he would never know what her answer would have been.