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Part of USS Daedalus: Those Moments Inbetween

I, Klingon

USS Daedalus
9.10.2401
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“You’ve got to be kidding me.” Captain Helena Dread stood in full gear on one side of the Autopsy table opposite her newly promoted Chief Medical Officer, Jordan Reid.  “I thought we got ’em all.”

Jordan, her feet shifting in uncertainty, had been just as stunned as her CO when she had started examining the Klingon body at the request of Mackenzie’s investigative team.  “Those within Starfleet and the Federation – yes, we thought we had them under control.  But there are many who disappeared or fled when the tide turned against them.  In this instance, the transporters detected something amiss, so we isolated the body.  It took a series of standard tests and a few additional ones to confirm it – this is not a Klingon, but a Changeling.”  She handed over the PADD, “They weren’t on any of our watch lists or records, so they’re likely a freelancer or a mercenary.  I can’t determine which side they were on, but this discovery has turned our understanding on its head, raising more questions than it answers.”

Dread leaned down over the body, her eyes searching the naked skin, “They made us question our friends…even our families.  The Borg have always been at the top of the list of terrifying enemies…but these guys climbed into the top five for me.”  She walked around the table, “You said there was something else?”

Reid pulled the display screen down from the ceiling, “Whatever side they were on, they were carrying these when they died.”  She tapped at the monitor, and schematics of Daedalus and Mackenzie appeared on the screen as she scrolled through the data packets that had been recovered from the body.  “Some of this isn’t suspect – but some of it…is concerning.”  Jordan paused on two screens, “Someone passed them our shield generator harmonics system and a few other secure systems.  I’ve forwarded it all to Chief Greer; her team is working quickly to adjust or replace the systems.”

Helena stared at the display, unsettled, “No idea how this Changeling got this?”  There were any number of reasons and none of them were making her feel better about what she was looking at at the moment.

“I had to send it to Athena and Fowler – they’re better at that side of things.  Their initial reading is that it’s an older schematics file, but…,”

Dread finished the thought, “No matter what – someone out there had information on our Squadron that would have been a catastrophe beyond measure.  I think we’re thinking of the same problem child.”

Reid grumbled, “Problem child is putting it nicely.  Pandora’s not subtle.  It feels like we’re getting closer and closer to her without even trying.  She may not be subtle, but she is a long-term planner.  You think she’s trying to pull us in?”

“Possible.  I don’t like playing games or being led down a path like some kind of treasure hunt.  I prefer to blaze my own warp trail and crash through the walls to make an entrance.  We’re going to have to start thinking ahead of her and around her.  Send your autopsy report up the chain.  Someone’s going to have an entertaining day.”

 

“That’s a serial number…goddamn it.  Jacobi.”  Chief Engineer Greer Moore sat across the table from the Chief Science Officer, Sadie Fowler.  They’d spent the last hour going through the various schematics and pieces of data that had been found on the Klingon, who had turned out to be a Changeling.  Having done as much surface work, they’d begun to dig through the code of the files.  That had been half an hour ago.  Suddenly, a serial number had scrolled past, and Moore had made the connection. Fowler asked, and she answered, “Harold Jacobi, lieutenant.  He’d been transferred to us on a lark and lasted about three months.  He was all over the place.  Had to place him on report three times.  That fourth time was it.  Scheduled a disciplinary review, but he resigned.  Found a few things missing on his room inspection but didn’t think anything of it.”  She clicked her tongue, mostly at herself, “That’s the last time I make that mistake.”

Fowler was working on the console on her side of the desk, “Records have him completing his exit interview at Starbase 72 and then eventually settling…shit.”  She swiveled the monitor for Greer to read, “Colony K223.  In the Demilitarized Zone.”  She did a quick check, “It’s more towards the edge than anything.  Small colony – maybe 30 people working a small mining plot.”  You think he’d be dumb enough to give us his location?”

Greer wasn’t sure.  “He might not think we’d figure it out – I mean, he probably stole the stuff from his quarters to keep his reputation as a screw-up alive and well – so much that we wouldn’t look any deeper.  The chances of us picking up the Changeling were so low.  Everything happens for a reason…and now we have a reason to visit.”

Sadie could see her friend’s desire for revenge: ” Do you think a vengeance tour is a good idea here?”

Moore scoffed, “I don’t care to see the man ever again if I can help it. Someone else can kick his can.  He’s not worth my time or effort.  He is all yours, Fowler.”  Moore wasn’t lying.  She knew if she faced off with Jacobi, she’d be unable to resist the urge to punch him.  In the face.  Repeatedly.  She knew her limits.  And this was one of them.

Sadie wasn’t sure how she felt about that.  She left the room and headed to report to the captain what they’d found.  Whatever happened next, Harold Jacobi was going to get a visit from one of them.