Family History

Athena D'Konis had hopes and dreams; she didn't want to wind up like the rest of the girls in the neighborhood... beaten, defeated, raising several children alone before she even turned twenty. She applied herself in school, graduating first in her high school class. But in her inner city school, that meant very little. She wanted to go to college, get out of the Chicago ghetto that had been her family's home for generations, make something of herself. Her parents encouraged her; this was their youngest child, and the only one still living. Three of her brothers and a sister had been victims of gang violence. The other brother and sister succumbed to the many diseases that ran rampant through the slums.

She did go to college, starting at the local junior college. She worked in the school bookstore and the cafeteria to supplement her scholarship money. She again graduated first in her class. This feat was more impressive. She continued at one of the state universities, again supplementing her scholarships with several part-time jobs. She astounded everyone by once again graduating first in her class with a Bachelor's degree in Biochemistry.

Athena had a dream, one that she had nurtured from an early age; one that was never spoken out loud. After graduation from the University of Illinois, she applied for admission to Starfleet Academy. To her delight and the astonishment of her parents, she was accepted for admission. Starfleet Academy was more difficult, however, than Chicago's public schools, Malcolm X Junior College or the University of Illinois. Although Athena studied hard, and no longer had to work to support herself, she graduated in the middle of her class. She was disappointed... but she was out of the poverty and violence of Chicago's west side.

Her first posting was as a junior science officer at a remote science station. Certainly not a glamorous position, nor a glamorous setting, but Athena was happy. After nearly a year on the station, she became romantically involved with one of her fellow officers, a Deltan communications specialist. Their relationship lasted until he was transferred to a small science vessel a year later. Two week after he left, Athena discovered that she was pregnant.

Distraught, Athena's health deteriorated when she was unable to locate her unborn child's father. She became extremely depressed. She requested and was granted medical leave to return to Earth for the birth of her child. She stayed with her parents until Rachel's birth. Athena never spoke of the child's father. Her health never improved completely, and she finally resigned her commission.

After Rachel was born, Athena spent most of the time with her friends, leaving her parents, Alexander and Rosalee, to care for Rachel. Her dreams had died with the birth of her daughter; her hopes faded away like a quiet summer evening. The change was gradual and barely perceptible. Within a couple of years, however, it was evident that Athena had given up. She was no different from any of her friends who had never left the ghetto.

When Rachel was four years old, Athena died of an accidental drug overdose.

Rachel's only surviving relatives were her maternal grandparents and her unknown father. Alex and Rosa did not have the means to pursue a search for their granddaughter's father. Since Athena had not spoken a single word about her lover, and they were insulated enough from interstellar society to not recognize their granddaughter was part Deltan, they did not have sufficient information to begin such a search.

Rachel was a happy baby, however; unconcerned by the tragedies playing out around her, untroubled by the poverty, uninterested in tears and unhappiness. She brought joy into her grandparents' lives.

For a short period of time, at least.

© Kelly Naylor