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Part of Deep Space 19: Opening The Door

Opening The Door – 9

Remus Remanent, Alcott Sector, Beta Quadrant
Stardate: 78503.5
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“The Klingon Empire has no jurisdiction here, General,” Horin said firmly. “You’re in Federation space, and our alliance agreement forbids the Klingon Defence Force from engaging with an internal matter.”

Kurak chuckled deeply at Horin’s words. “You are like a toothless old grishnar cat, trying to frighten us with your roar.”

“Believe me when I say my roar is as powerful as my might, General,” Horin said. “I’d hate for the Klingon High Council to be informed that you trespassed and involved yourself here.”

“I do not fear you, Starfleet,” Kurak replied, his voice filled with unwavering confidence as he moved closer to Horin. “I am repaying a blood oath. The High Council would understand that.”

“Klingon customs are not recognised within Federation territory,” Horin said, remaining defiant against the Klingon. “And I think you must be the first Klingon in Klingon history to make a blood oath with citizens of the fallen Romulan Star Empire.”

“Colonel Shivux and his people proved their worth during the Dominion War,” Kurak stated. They assisted us in defeating the entire Eleventh Order at Septimus Three. If it had not been for their bravery, we would not have been victorious!”

Horin knew his history well and smirked at the general. “The fall of the Cardassian Eleventh Order was one of Chancellor Martok’s easiest victories in the war. You only defeated half a million old men and wounded soldiers.”

At that point, Kurak pulled out his d’k tahg and closed the gap between him and Horin. He raised his dagger towards the captain’s throat.“If you wore any other uniform, I would kill you where you stand.”

“And if you were any true general of the Klingon Defence Force, you would side with your ally,” Horin said, remaining unmoved. He had noticed that Parin and Taf had both pulled their phasers out and were aiming them now at the general.

“Calm down, General,” Taf told him. It may have been some time since I fought with a Klingon, but we’re not letting you interfere here.”

Snarling, Kurak pulled his d’k tahg away from Horin’s neck. “You will treat these Remans with the respect they deserve.”

“Naturally,” Horin said with a smirk. He was pleased that his exchange with the general had forced him to stand down. 

“We will not let you force them away from here,” Kurak threatened.

“The general is right; we will not move,” Shivux said confidently. 

“Formidable to Captain Horin,” spoke Lieutenant Hawkins over Hori’s combadge.

Horin kept looking at both the Reman and Klingon as he answered. He was surprised to see such a pair working side by side. “Go ahead, lieutenant.”

“Sir, we’ve just been informed that the admiral is on her way here with the Romulan Free State representative,” Hawkins reported.

“Very good, lieutenant, thank you,” Horin replied. For a moment, he considered if having a Romulan in the same room as a Klingon and a Reman was a great mix, and then he realised it may help by pushing them into corners they would hate. 

“That’s not all of it, sir,” Hawkins added. “Deep Space Nineteen reports that a Klingon Negh’Var has arrived and is threatening to open fire on the station and Kovar. Captain Levy isn’t the only one to have some Klingon guests arrive. We’ve just had three Birds of Prey decloak in front of us. Their shields are up, and disruptors are locked on us. They’re telling us to leave.”

Horin looked at Kuvak, and his smirk appeared wider. “Understood, lieutenant,” Wondering just how far Kuvak would take this blood oath with the Remans, Horin scratched his chin. “Lieutenant, perform a tactical analysis of the three Klingon ships.”

“Already done, sir; they’re old D-Twelve classes from over fifty years ago; though they’ve had some refits on their armour and weapons, nothing else appears recent,” Hawkins replied.

“Excellent,” Horin smirked at hearing that. “Lieutenant, target my combadge with a spread of high-yield tricobalt devices set at twenty-thousand teracochranes, standby to fire on my command.”

“Sir, did you just ask me to vaporise you and the asteroid?” Hawkins asked, sounding surprised and concerned by his superior’s request.

“Do it, Tom,” Parin added.

At hearing Horin’s order, Shivux stepped forward, “You would destroy us all?”

“Yes, because you and your followers,” Horin replied by pointing at Kurak, “Have just become an intolerable threat to the security of the Federation. Now, I don’t care if the Free State have an issue that we blow this rock to billions of smaller parts; what I do care about is that a joint Klingon-Reman task force is now within Federation space, threatening Federation lives. I intend to end it.”

“He is bluffing, Shivux,” Kurak said. “He wouldn’t kill himself, especially as my ships are holding their trigger against not just his ship but against that station of theirs too.”

Taf moved to stand closer to Horin. She could see that Horin was prepared to hold his ground in this situation. “I hope you’ve got all your affairs in order, General, as you’re about to be judged on whether you go to Sto’vo’kor or head to the Barge of the Dead.” 

“It will be you all who will enter Gre’thor, not me,” Kuvak remarked.

“Maybe, but you will be known as the disgraced general who plunged the Klingon Empire into a war with the Federation, the Romulan Republic and more than likely the Romulan Free State. Do you honestly think the Empire can defend itself against the three of us?” Horin said.

“Your Federation is weak after the Borg killed some of your best, and that puppet Romulan nation you prop up, and the Free State will be easy to conquer. Having the Romulans under Klingon rule would make the Beta Quadrant safer.” Kurak said confidently.

“But you’re people will be dead and won’t be seen as equals in the eyes of the Klingon Empire, Colonel,” Parin pleaded to Shivux. “Do you honestly want to see the genocide of your people?”

Shivux sighed heavily. “I want to see my people left alone and given a place to live. We deserve to make a home here on the remains of our homeworld.”

“Then surely we can find a way to make that work,” Horin said. “But I won’t let your Klingon lapdogs dictate terms to us in our space. You wanted our attention, and you’ve now got it. Tell Kurak and his ships to stand down, and we will disarm our tricobalt devices.”

For a moment, Horin wondered if Shivux would continue with his stand. Instead, he turned to Kuvak. “General, you and your soldiers are released from our blood oath.”

Kuvak looked Shivux up and down, almost like a predator considering whether or not to eat its prey. “The binds that pulled us together in war will always remain strong, Shivux.” He then turned to Horin. “Remember this, Captain Horin: You and your people threatened a Great House. We will not forgive or forget this.” He tapped his combadge on his arm and was transported off the rock. 

“Sir, someone just beamed to one of the Klingon ships, and they are departing from Federation territory,” Hawkins declared.

Horin sighed with relief. “What about the ship threatening Deep Space Nineteen?” 

“Captain Levy reports they’re retreating to the Empire too,” Hawkin shared.

“Good, stand down the tricobalt devices and tell me when the admiral arrives,” Horin ordered before he closed his combadge. He turned to Shivux, “Colonel, we get it; this was your home, but let’s find a way that works for you, for us, and for the Free State.”

“It will only work if we can remain here, captain,” Shivux said.

Horin turned to his officers and then back to his Reman counterpart. “Then why don’t you?”

“Explain,” Shivux said.

“We planned to move this asteroid to the Kovar system and mine it. Why can’t we bring you and your people along for the ride?” Horin probed. “We can work out the finer details, but instead of Starfleet and the Federation having to mine this asteroid, you get to it instead? If you ask for political asylum within the Federation, then the Free State can’t touch you, and they would be forced to agree to you living here still?”

Shivux considered the proposal. “If you promise we won’t be moved.”

“You have my word,” Horin said sincerely.

“Then we agree to discuss the matter further with you.”

Horin smiled at Shivux, then at Taf and Parin at this development.

USS Formidable (NCC-74207)

“Well done, Captain,” Jaret stated as they stepped through the doorway from the transporter room and towards the bridge. “Not only have you prevented a war with the Klingon Empire, but you’ve somehow been able to find a new workforce for our new mining operation.”

“Thank you, Admiral, but I’m still worried that Senator Valer won’t keep up with the Free State’s end of the deal,” Horin said as they started their walk down the corridor.

“He had no choice,” Jaret remarked. Plus, we are offering more dilithium than before, and we’ve agreed for them to set up a diplomatic attache at the station to monitor everything. We get to see the senator on a daily basis now.”

“Do you think Command will be happy with us having Reman refugees to babysit?” Horin asked as they turned the corridor. 

“I’ll leave the legal paperwork with Sandra to deal with, and it’s not as if we’re saying every Reman is moving to Kovar, just a few,” Jaret told him confidently. “The only person I suspect will have an issue with this is Governor Thompson.”

“He sounds like a delight,” Horin said sarcastically.

“Oh, he is,” Jaret confirmed. “But I’d leave him to Dawn to deal with.”

“You like to delegate a lot, ma’am?” Horin asked as they entered the bridge, and Hawkins spoke up to tell everyone that the admiral was on the bridge.

Jaret smirked. “Oh, course. That’s the best thing about having a number of seasoned officers under you. Admiral’s prerogative.” She looked at everyone and told them to get back to work. Now, talking of which, you’re going to get us home.”

“Don’t fancy a shot at the chair, Admiral?” Horin offered towards the chair in the centre of the bridge.

“As I said, Admiral’s prerogative.” She said with a wink before leaving the bridge to let Horin get back to work.

Horin could sense everyone now looking at him and waiting for his orders. Taking his chair, he sat down and looked over at Taf. “Counsellor, what’s our status?”

“Ready to get underway, Captain,” Taf shared. “The runabouts from Deep Space Nineteen have arrived to start Commander Fitzgerald’s experiment in moving the Reman asteroid towards Kovar as planned.”

“Good. Are all of the Remans off the asteroid?” Horin checked.

“They are,” Taf confirmed. “Colonel Shivux successfully beamed over after he left us. He has signalled they’re ready and eager to help.”

“I’m not sure Layla had prepared for some old Romulan battlecruisers to be part of her plans,” Parin joked. But if they can help us move that rock, then I’m sure she is all for it.”

“I think you’ll find they’re eager to get to their new home,” Taf stated.

“Don’t you mind going back to their old home?” Hawkins countered. 

“Either way, they want to be home,” Parin said. “And there’s nothing like going home!”

“Home sweet home,” Hawkins added.

Horin smiled at the scene around him. He started to feel that joining Deep Space Nineteen was the right choice. He looked down at the helm, where he could sense his son still keeping his guard up. “Mister Horin, standby to get us underway.”

“Aye, sir,” Tate replied formally.

Horin then looked at Hawkins. “Lieutenant, signal the Reman task force and our runabouts that we are ready to start the operation.”

“Aye, captain!” Hawkins said as he turned back into his station and carried on talking. “Operation Let’s Move A Massive Rock To Kovar is underway, sir!”