Meanwhile on the Ella Fitzgerald, Lieutenant Pressman was sitting in the pilot’s seat in the cockpit. The shuttle hadn’t been secured by command codes, so his normal Starfleet authority was enough for him to commandeer it. So far, so good. Captain Hayden seemed concerned but she hadn’t caught on to them, yet. On schedule, he reached over to the communications panel to tap out a fake update to the Arcturus: the life signs accompanied by a holographic depiction of the four officers in one of the bunk rooms. All he had to do was get inside the hanger bay of the shocking monstrosity that was the Arcturus. How dare Starfleet put a shipbuilding facility over yet another defenseless world after what had happened to Mars?
Pressman had spent the entirety of his post-Academy career in the Epsilon Indi system, much of it on shuttle runs between the Tarl homeworld and the station itself. He’d come to empathize with its people, though he was absolutely shocked that popular opinion was in favor of expanding the station because of the increased trade and cultural connections it brought to the Tarl.
His own family hadn’t been so lucky on Mars, and he wasn’t going to allow a repeat of that disaster, even if it meant breaking every oath he’d ever taken.