Posted in Flash Fiction Pieces, Life Writing, WIPpet Wednesday

WIPpet Wednesday: Awakened by an Alien?

Welcome to WIPpet Wednesday –K.L. Schwengel’s weekly blog hop which encourages writers to move their WIPs (works-in-progress) to publication by posting excerpts related to the date.

WIPpet Math:

Today is May 21, 2014.

Today’s math…”multiples of five”.

  • 5+21-1= 25 sentences. (adding the digits of the date: month, and day, then subtracting one to keep a multiple of five. Or, 26 sentences was one too many!).

This month, I’m offering up a taste of myStory A Day May Challenge. I’m exploring my fanfiction concept for Star Trek: Enterprise, and the interspecies relationship betweenT’Pol and Trip, in a project tentatively titled The IDIC Romance.

This snippet is an extrapolation from the “jazz club” scenes in the episode “Fusion”. I’ve estimated that this exchange happened about 14 months before the first mission of Enterprise NX-01, the first Warp 5 starship. It occurs immediately on the heels of last week’s post, In The Beginning.

And now, let’s rejoinT’Pol, who had slipped out on her own (and against protocol) to explore the entertainments on a strange new world known as Earth...and followed compelling music into a restaurant…

A young man, the nucleus of a group of five humans, looked up as I entered, and something quivered from my fingertips, up my arms, through my entire body. I bit back a gasp that would have cut though the music.

Struggling to maintain my emotional control, I went to a table, and sat where I could see the musicians play their primal mating calls, and still observe the young human. He was watching me, too, in quick covert glances. The quivering intensified, becoming a buzzing, and I remembered T’Khut, red and full, filling the sky above me, the fruit ripe and heavy in my hands as I tipped it to my lips…

He held a small instrument to his mouth with both hands, weaving complementary notes into the chaotic music. One of the musicians gestured to him, in silent invitation, but he shook his head, and slipped the instrument into a pocket with a shrug.

“You should’ve gone up, Trip.” said a young woman who was pressed close to a man with a beard in the shade I believed humans called red; it reminded me of the floors in my mother’s home. “You’re good enough.”

“Ah, but he’s not nearly brave enough!” said another man, laughing.

“Just ’cause a fella’s kinda shy, you gotta question his courage,” he said, and, at the sound of his voice, the quivering buzz was back, the nectars so sweetly imagined upon my lips that I almost darted my tongue out to taste them. They blended – with the music, the awareness of him, the strange smells and sounds and sensations…

A question arose, powerful, surging with the music.

Was this my Awakening?

Could it happen here, on this alien world? Was I not meant to Awaken only to Koss, who would be my husband, when I returned home?

Was I instead Awakening to this human man, Trip – an alien about whom I knew nothing; nothing, except that his pull was more urgent than the music weaving him into my mind -?

I wanted to run, to pretend it was not happening – not this way, in this place, with this man.

But that was illogical. It was. I focused on breathing, until I could think.

I knew little more of Koss. That he was quiet, and attractive, and an architect.

That we had been Promised, and our minds joined in childbond, when we were seven years old.

Was I wrong to want more than that, from a pairbonding?

To want this human, whose blue eyes seemed to return, again and again, to focus on me?

Is this T’Pol’s Awakening? What is Awakening? And what about Koss? If you want more before next week, you can try the links below.

The full version of the story

Story A Day commentary…


These posts are the seeds of a project that will germinate over the next months, so input is especially valuable. No need to feel shy; I’m a friendly sort, and will keep my talons sheathed…for the most part.

Want more WIPpets?

I’ve got a special treat to share today – my current favorite T’Pol fan tribute, “Vulcan Rubdown.” A little risque, a little loud, and a whole lot funny! Grab your disinfectant gel, turn it down if you’re at work or in mixed company, and, well, rub away! ;D



I am myself. I own my life, and live with three other people who own theirs. My intention is to do only those things that bring me joy, and to give myself wholly to those things I do. Writing has been my passion throughout my life, and this will become the home for my writing life...because it brings me great joy!

12 thoughts on “WIPpet Wednesday: Awakened by an Alien?

  1. This piece flowed nicely. I liked how she considered her future here and at home.

    One thing that caught me was the mention of “primal mating calls” since I wasn’t certain if she was referring to the music (and given some of the examples of Vulcan music I’ve heard played, jazz is not more or less primal or “mating focused”) or the discussions of the humans around her. Good choice of words to show a derogatory perception of humans however.

    1. Sys,

      The “primal mating call” references the music- but not the music as-is, so much as her first impression of it (in the previous WIPpet), as being somehow akin in feel to the mating cry of the le-matya upon the Forge.

      It’s not that the music is intended to sound that way (it didn’t, to me, when I heard it, but I’m not a huge fan of most jazz, either), but a matter of her perception…perhaps fueled by the hidden rebellion of breaking protocol, or whatever physiological switch was just Tripped (pun only semi-intentional!), allowing her to be Awakened. Maybe a combination of those things, and a desire to escape the too-rigid confines of a Vulcan life, which her mother references in Season 4, and which is a recurring theme for her throughout the series.

      I’m also not sure that her view of humans as a whole is derogatory. She’s taken the time to learn to speak English well, she’s slipped out to learn how they amuse themselves. I’m thinking she’s warily curious, and, like most Vulcans of her time, misinformed to some degree. It’s likely she feels Vulcans are a more sophisticated race on many levels; and it’s likely she’s right about that.

      But she is open to learning more in a way that her colleagues at the Consulate clearly aren’t, so that says something about her mindset, going in…

  2. You did a great job showing the tension here: the cultural and childhood expectations vs. the realistic and physical desires. All I can say is, “uh-oh!”

    1. Alana,

      “Uh-oh” about sums up where this is heading. With lots of incendiary deliciousness along the way! T’Pol just might be in for the ride of her life, and Trip just might get carried along with her…

  3. Nice snippet, Shan! Great physical tension between the two characters, very well communicated, and good internal conflict.

    I swear I really am going to start watching that show soon. *g*

    1. Ruth,

      Thanks – these two make the conflict easy…Enterprise had talented writers and actors who were given lots of space, and they set up the T’Pol/Trip relationship and then let it evolve over the course of the series…

      The link I gave you for might not help. Right after I shared the link, they started dropping episodes. They were down to 30 last I looked. All early episodes, though, at least…

      But Amazon Prime does have it, and I think CBS does, too…

      I am having a tremendously good time writing these stories. Not sure where they’re going yet, but I have a few ideas. =)

  4. That video—LOL!

    I love this. The way they keep looking at each other, and you can tell he’s sort of trying to pretend he’s not sneaking glances. She doesn’t seem to have any qualms about watching him overtly, though. 🙂

    1. Amy,

      I love that video! In ways that probably don’t bear too close an examination… ;D

      Yup. Trip knows the human courtship dance well enough. T’Pol, on the other hand – well, getting betrothed at seven kind of precludes having a courtship dance. And she’s a scientist, so she studies things that are of note…openly. I’m guessing it doesn’t even occur to her that she’s being rather forward, if not rude, by human standards!

  5. This is a great scene Shanjeniah. I love the way you describe T’Pol’s arousal at the sight of the human and the way that she reflects upon her betrothed back on Vulcan, how she feels about him compared with the human. Good stuff!

    1. Elaine,

      It was Leonard Nimoy whho decided that Vulcans had to be a hand-centric species, and introduced that element to their sexuality, way-back-when, when “Amok Time” was the most risque thing in Star Trek (except maybe those Orion Slave Girls…).

      I was a little surprised at how suddenly and vividly T’Pol’s Awakening manifested. I think she’s even more shocked. It certainly wasn’t what she expected to experience when she slipped away…

      And Vulcan marriages – well, they’re different. More like business arrangements. Until this moment, it’s never occurred to T’Pol to think much about Koss (she’s only met him two or three times, thus far), or the impending formalizing of their parents’ arrangement. It’s just How Things Are.

      If she were thinking a little more clearly, she might be alarmed at how much she’s focused on feeling. Feeling isn’t intended to enter into the marriage decision – although it’s expected that the bondmates will “develop affection” for one another, in time…

      So, for her, this is definitely turning out to be a strange new world!

  6. That video is…*snort* Okay, that’s one way to start my morning. 😀

    Love this “But that was illogical. It was. I focused on breathing, until I could think.” Because it is illogical, isn’t it? Hee, hee. A great scene.

    1. I have been singing that song at inappropriate moments ever since it first brought tears to my eyes last week. Even my Enterprise-fatigued spouse laughed out loud. And the bit with Hoshi at the end….”get me a shirt….”

      I confess – I added it for you! =) You’re welcome!

      Yes, it is illogical. Or maybe not….

      I guess it depends on whether we’re talking Vulcan logic, or the logic of souls that know what they want, or where they belong, or….

      Or something.

      I wonder if this will cure her of this reckless tendency to wander off alone at night on alien worlds…?

      I wonder who’s more confused right now – T’Pol, or me?

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