Second Chance


Post New Generation

Scott Bernard returns to Earth after almost two years stranded on Mars, determined to find Marlene and gain her forgiveness.

Scott must face his mistakes and confront a powerful enemy to protect his love interest and his friends.

A dramatic turn of events seals the fate of all characters.

Chapter 8

Guilt, Delusions and Dreams
The Invid gathering shows its effect


Scott could not stand the hospital bed any longer. He had not completely recovered yet, but he was restless. Under the present circumstances, he needed to be out of there. Too many things were on his mind. Marlene had told him about her encounters with the prisoners. She sensed something was cooking, but they did not let her know what exactly.

She watched over him day and night ever since she learnt he was injured. He loved her. He could not forget how emotional she was when she first saw his wounds. The scars from the fire were a frightening sight. But, most of them had been treated and the rest would go away over time.

Contradictory feelings pulsated inside him. His unit had sent many Invid into the afterworld, if such a thing existed. The killing happened regardless of his firm intention to avoid it. After he was hit, Bryant took control. The Lieutenant Commander’s prompt actions saved many men’s lives. That was good, but what about the Invid?

Scott felt his shoulders burdened with responsibility over the Invid’s deaths. Ironically, he loved one of them. Every time something like that happened, he felt he had betrayed her. How were things ever going to work out between them?

Marlene did not blame him, but Scott would not give it a rest. He thought if he could have done something to prevent the massacre over and over. Perhaps if he had waited a little longer to enter the warehouse or if he had double-checked that all arms were out of the mob’s reach… or if he had taken James with him instead of Dawson… or… He clenched his teeth. This was torture.

“Dawson…” he wondered how she was. He felt terrible for what had happened. Why did she jump?” He felt his feelings towards her intensifying. Was it gratefulness? A strong physical attraction? Maybe admiration for her courage? He did not know any more. Guilt had shaken his feelings even more.


“No change,” said an emotionless voice.

“Cerebral activity scan indicates patient is experiencing high levels of distress,” said another.

“Increase the dose of sedative,” commanded a third one.

Kelly barely distinguished whispers around her. Every piece of her body ached intensely, puncturing her mind. Pain and burning heat were all she could distinguish in her feverish state.

“Will she make it?” she heard someone ask.

“Not sure,” was the answer.

Trapped in a delirious loop, Kelly’s mind was reliving the warehouse blast scene. She could see everything in perfect detail. “The Invid… oh no! It fired! He had not seen it…Scott!” she yelled. The warehouse was full of smoke, the blast came and, in a mindless second, she jumped to protect him. She replayed her role once and again. And every single time, the molten mass hit, burning her mercilessly. As the unforgiving fire swallowed her and Scott, she could not do a thing. She could not move; she could not yell.

Her mind tried to break free and took her to the base’s hangars. She stood face to face with him. “I love you, Scott,” she said truthfully.

“I love you too,” he answered in her delusion. But something did not feel right. “The nurse!” Kelly remembered; she had taken Scott away from her. The red-haired woman laughed at her while her eyes glowed an evil red. Suddenly, the hangars and the warehouse blended into each other. The Invid appeared and fired on everything that moved. Kelly saw the inevitable flames ensue and distinguished Scott through them. The Invid targeted him… It fired… “No!” she moaned barely audibly. She was going insane.

“She is coming back,” said a voice in the vacuum.


“I give up!” said the doctor shaking her head. “You can go, Bernard…” she added, finally giving in to Scott’s non-stop arguing. There was no use in trying to keep the hyperactive Captain there. “But, under one condition. Marlene must promise she will keep you under close observation.” Scott turned his hopeful eyes towards the nurse. She nodded. He sighed, relieved.

Marlene’s feelings about his release were mixed. Although she had seen him take countless risks in combat during the Invid war, she was shocked when she learnt he had been hurt. She was not eager for him to be in harm’s way again.

Lately, she was increasingly nervous and jumpy at times. Her encounter with the alien prisoners and the Invid hunt across the city had her understandably stressed. Scott getting wounded on top of that, only added to her fears. When she found him at the hospital, she cried uncontrollably. The man she loved was in a dangerous line of work. At least he was recovering from his injuries now. That was all that mattered.

Under her present state of mind, letting go of Scott felt harder than ever. Instead of returning to Lancer and Sera’s apartment in the city, Scott and her would share his quarters that night. She had to keep an eye on him, after all.

“It is my duty to check how well you have recovered, Captain,” she said playfully while they walked. He smiled.


Sera quivered on the bed. She was livid and cold sweat covered her forehead. Lancer asked what was wrong. She could not answer, so he just held her tightly against him. After a few seconds in his arms, she seemed to calm down.

“I'm sorry,” she said.

“There is nothing to be sorry about. We all have bad dreams, my love,” he said and smiled at her. “You'll feel better in the morning.”

Sera sighed; she trusted him completely. She closed her eyes and tried to go back to sleep, but she could not. Pretending was all she could think of not to worry her husband any more.

But Lancer was worried anyway. Sera’s anxiety and nervousness were getting out of hand. If only there was something else he could do to ease her mind. He feared her frightened demeanor as well as those past “incidents” with her ex-assistants would give her away. If someone put things together, it would be the end of his wife’s safety.

He had to do something to help her, take her away, maybe. He left his wife’s side to write an urgent e-mail.


“What's wrong?” Scott asked softly and surrounded Marlene between his arms. She sobbed lightly. Her terrified gasps had woken him up in the middle of the night.

“It's nothing,” she replied. “I'm sorry to have woken you up. Please go back to sleep, you need your rest.”

But he would not. “The same dream again?” he whispered into her ear. She nodded. For the last several nights, a recurring vivid nightmare had haunted her. She had described it to him.

“Nothing bad is going to happen, Marlene,” he reassured her. Fear showed in her eyes. He placed gentle kisses on her earlobe and felt her relaxing slowly. She wrapped her arms around him. The stressful situation they were living in was finally taking its toll on her psyche.

“There's something strange about these dreams, Scott. I feel they are a warning,” she said scared. Despite being skeptical, he tried to comfort her. “I am scared. I don’t want to loose you,” she whispered.

“Nothing will happen to either of us. I won’t let it,” he answered.

But she could not shake the sinking feeling from her mind. “What's happening to me?” she wondered as she cuddled against his chest. He held her close to him. After a while, she fell asleep.

In the dark, silent room, he began to wonder if in fact Marlene's dreams were some kind of warning. It did not make sense. It was probably just the result of stress. He closed his eyes and slowly he drifted into a peaceful sleep.


“Are we there yet?” asked a childish girl’s voice.

“No, not yet,” answered a man.

“Ouch…My butt is hurting. At least they could make the seats more comfortable; this is such a long trip,” the girl complained.

“Sorry ‘bout that,” answered the man amused. “Next time I will get you first class tickets,” he added.

“Very funny, Lunk,” complained Annie, rubbing her sore behind.

He stretched and yawned loudly. His fully extended body was not meant to fit in the tiny train accommodations.

“Ouch!” he yelled, bumping his head against the luggage compartment. The girl grinned as he rubbed his head.

“I hope Lancer and Sera have nice comfy beds waiting for us,” she said excitedly. “I can’t wait to see how is the life in the big city,” she added with stars in her big blue eyes. “Do you think they are going to like the surprise,” she inquired. Before he could answer she was yapping about the stores she would see, the clothes she would get and of course, the peppermint…

“Yeah,” he said and smiled. “They'll love it.”


Scott left his quarters early the next morning. Marlene did not need an extra worry, so he decided not to tell her about Kelly’s feelings for him. Guilt was eating at him for many reasons, that being one of them. He felt like a criminal when he rejected Kelly before battle, but now he felt ten times worse. She almost died.

The doctor had told him she was recovering, but even then, he could not escape his guilt. He was back at work and with Marlene, while Kelly remained on a hospital bed. He had to see her.

He paced outside her hospital room lost in his thoughts. His emotions felt like a piece of paper flying in the middle of a windstorm. He needed to see for himself that she was doing okay. Yet again, he did not know what he could say to her. Kelly seemed to have that effect on him. “Thank her, for once,” he told himself. But that felt empty and incredibly stupid; he had rejected her love just before she saved his life. “What a jerk you are, Bernard,” he told himself. He knew the feeling. It seemed that he was irrevocably condemned to behave like one whenever love and a woman were involved.

“Why can’t things be simple? Just for once!” he asked himself while he paced. He finally knocked on the door. He gulped. The door slid open revealing Lieutenant Robert James inside the room.

“Captain,” he said coldly as he saluted him.

“We are off duty now, James,” replied Scott walking into the room. James relaxed.

Kelly lay unconscious on her hospital bed. The sight of her wounds saddened the Captain. “How is she doing?” he asked.

James walked to the side of her bed. “She is out of the woods, but hasn’t regained consciousness yet,” he declared. He looked at Scott impassibly. “Your wounds have healed impressively fast, Captain,” he added. Scott nodded, feeling uneasy. “She would be happy to see that you weren’t badly hurt,” James continued scornfully. Scott felt the blow.

“I never wanted this to happen,” the Captain said. The Lieutenant glared at him.

“You don’t care about her,” James said upset.

“I do! I... I greatly appreciate Lieutenant Dawson…” Scott replied stung, catching on James meaning.

“Sure, sir,” James cut him off sarcastically. “Many men would have done that for her and not the other way around,” he added to Scott's bewilderment. “The nurse is probably glad it's not you laying on this bed,” he said looking at Kelly. In a split second the Captain grabbed James by the neck of his uniform. He was enraged by his comments.

In that precise moment, a nurse stepped into the room to check up on the patient. She was shocked by the scene going on between both soldiers.

"This is not the place for that kind of behavior!" She warned them. Scott let go of James.

“If you don’t mind, I have to go, Captain. I need some fresh air,” James said scornfully. He walked to the door. Scott gritted his teeth.

“Damn it!” He thought.


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Posted on: 2004-07-02

CHAPTERS | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 |

Disclaimer: I do not own Robotech, Macross, Southern Cross, Mospeada or their characters. These stories were written for entertainment purposes only. No infringement is intended.
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