Part of USS Sovereign: Hollowed Planet

Prologue

Colony Compound / Runabout / Devron Fleet Yards
March 2400
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The Beginning Of Part One – The Sovereign

PROLOGUE

On a planet located in the neutral space between the three powers of the Federation, Romulans and Klingons; located in the corner of the large complex is one of the most busy locations. Inside the building was a massive crowd surrounding a massive square arena ring where two mechs about ten feet tall were in hand to hand combat. The crowd was roaring with life, cheering at their selected fighter and watched as the mech from the right had swung their left fist and made contact to the center of the left mech’s chest plate where the operator is located.

In the crowd were two faces, familiar to those who are their friends that happen to not be there, unfamiliar to all of those around them. Least as far as they know. The two individuals were Ruben Ortiz and Mizu, Ensigns from the starship Centaur. They have been on shore leave for the past few weeks and their shore leave was absolutely coming to an end. But Mizu wanted to watch one last round of the Mech Battle Royal that ended up being a head to head fight between the Head Smasher and the Demolisher.

“Come on Head Smasher!! Woooo–!!” Shouted Mizu as she jumped up and down, flailing her arms in the air to get some attention but the operators were too busy trying to smash each other up. Of course it was easy for the operators to ignore their fans when just about the entire crowd were flailing their arms about in cheer for the destruction and mayhem they were creating.

A sudden hard pounding punch from the Demolisher to the headpiece of the Head Smasher that the operator failed to deflect, had sent the very same headpiece right towards a group of fans. Luckily for them, aside from the ring being protected by a wall and incredibly strong clear covers, there was also a forcefield to catch the headpiece. Well actually, the headpiece shattered against the forcefield into hundreds of smaller pieces. But this only made the crowd cheer louder.

“Awww shoot! There goes his sensors and upper body control. If he has a backup somewhere, which I assume he does for the experienced mech fighter that he is, he should be able to get his arms moving again. But he needs to hurry or OOHHH!!!” Mizu was interrupted when the Demolisher went for the crotch, pieces flying out from the rear.

“The hell is he doing?” Ruby asked.

“Demolisher is trying to take out the lower body control unit. If he does, Head Smasher won’t be able to move his legs either!” Mizu explained. But then they would see the Head Smasher get his arms back in motion and deflect the second blow to his groin. Only to counter with a booster propelled punch to the chest piece. More pieces flying all over the place as the operator cabin to the Demolisher was compromised. “Oh my god yes! YES!!! Head Smasher is going for the kill!”

Ruby frowned, “Isn’t that illegal?”

Mizu laughed, “Are you kidding? Here? Nothing is illegal.”

Suddenly the Demolisher’s left hand interchanged into a claw and grabbed onto the one single joint that connects the legs to the upper body. Then a hydraulic pump extended from the elbow and began to pump in and out of the arm to increase the clamp’s crushing power. The operator of the Head Smasher tried to stop the Demolisher from severing his legs but it was too late, one last hydraulic pump and the clamp closed down all the way through. With one yank, the Demolisher was successful in paralyzing the Head Smasher from the waist down. With a quick change back to the hand from his clamp, he grabbed Head Smasher and tossed him across the ring.

“Is that it for him?” Ruby asked.

Mizu shook her head. “Oh heck no it aint! He still got some fight left in him. Look! He’s getting up! Come on Head Smasher!!! I got money on ya!

“You know we shouldn’t be gambling.” Ruby reminded her and she slugged him in the shoulder.

“Don’t ruin my vacation, pal.” She grinned at him and then screamed in cheer with the others when Head Smasher got back up, using their hands as feet and arms as legs to move. The operator inside Head Smasher began flipping switches, those that were marked as a last resort. He activated auxiliary power and opened up his remaining fuel tanks before he made his charge at Demolisher. His instruments bleeping and blaring at him that he was redlining all systems, he propelled his unit towards Demolisher at great speed before pressing a button that activated a propulsion system that made him ‘jump’ into the air.

Then he pulled back the right arm, balled up into a fist and pressed another button to activate a second and third propulsion system that propelled him towards Demolisher, but also the same booster system in his right arm that gave his fist extra speed and power. His target was the headpiece of Demolisher but his hope is that with enough force, he can do more than take out the headpiece. Once his fist made contact with the headpiece, it smashed through the control circuits, through the armor plating and all the crowd could see was Head Smasher shoving itself away from Demolisher as it collapsed to the floor, unresponsive.

Mizu began jumping up and down cheering like crazy among the rest of the crazies here on this god awful planet. Ruby wished he had not let her talk him into coming here but it was their last stop and she assured him that it would be fun. “I don’t get it. What happened?” Ruby asked into her ear.

She looked at him with a huge smile on her face. She had won her bet. “Head Smasher went for the hail mary! Not only did he destroy the control unit to the upper body but he also made it through into the rear compartment from his point of entry and smashed the master control circuit as well as damaged the power unit. Demolisher is no more! He won!!” She turned to look back at the combatants and cheered loudly once again. And then the crowd started chanting ‘Kill! Kill! Kill!’ Mizu sighed, still a smile on her face but nonetheless, turned and grabbed Ruby’s hand. “Come on, you wouldn’t want to see this part.”

As she led the way out of the crowd while pulling him, they were finally able to talk more ‘peacefully’ without having to shout over all the noise. Ruby checked his chronometer and knew he had to remind her of the time. “Mizu, if we don’t leave right now, we’re going to end up late on reporting in.”

Mizu waved her hand at him. “Yeah yeah, I hear ya. Look, I just need to go to the counter over there and get my two hundred bars of gold pressed latinum, okay?”

Ruby’s eyes went wide, “Holy crap, Mizu! Two hundred bars?!”

Mizu shrugged her shoulders. “I wish I had bet ten bricks! But at the risk of losing, the last thing I need is to be in debt and owing the Orion Syndicate. Then Starfleet will be on my ass for sure.”

Ruby shook his head. “I’ll wait for you right here. Hurry up.”

Mizu kissed his cheek. “I’ll just be five minutes! I promise!” She then hurried off towards the booth to turn in her winnings. It took literally five minutes for her to get her bars which she had tagged and transported immediately to the runabout. Carrying around that kind of money would certainly cause too many problems than these two Ensigns really need.

But on her way back to Ruby, she was suddenly swarmed by a crowd that were also eager to turn in their winnings and this made it difficult for her to navigate. But what she did not expect was to be grabbed by two individuals and pulled away into an empty room where her back was shoved against the wall. “Hey! Who the he-” She was interrupted when one of them brought up a device that flashed a single light rapidly in a certain succession that essentially just paralyzed her completely.

W̸̼̗͖̎͊e̶͈͂̆ ̶̨̘͕̠̃̕m̴̳͆́̈́̕u̷͖͍̍̈́̐̊ś̸̮͎̜̆t̶̰̫̎̉̂ ̶̖̖̟̲̓̓̌̚h̷̪͙̄́ų̸̼͒r̵̖͉̿̕ŗ̶̢̛̬̥͌̔̚ẙ̵̨̟̗̉.̶̣̺͙̅̊” The voice was so distorted, likely some device that was trying to make it impossible to understand, or determine who the voice belonged to. But it was the second figure who said it, where the first figure handed the second figure a case.

The second figure opened up the case and inside was a tear dropper. They pulled it out of the case and both figures had tilted her head back. Her eyes were stuck open, not blinking at all, so they had the perfect opportunity to drop not one but several drops of a clear liquid into her right eye. The second figure then quickly put the dropper back in the case, closed it and stuffed it in their jacket before the first figure handed them a device. The second figure held up the small portable device and started scanning her eye.

Ȉ̴̢͎̙̇s̸̜̥͈̥̕͝ ̵̬̽́̈́i̶̡̾͐͝t̷͓̩̋̈ ̸̻̒͌͝w̶̧̺̽́o̶̻̻̬̒̅͆̈r̵̨̯̤̱̎ḱ̸̄̎̈͜í̴̡͚̣̏̈̔n̵̢̛̺͔͑̀̕ǵ̸̪̪̻̗́͂̓?̸̪̼́̉” Asked the first figure.

Ỹ̸̨̭̺̬̏͠ẹ̵̘̗̤̋̿͋s̴̻̲̔.̵͎͚̗͊ ̸̛̙͈͎̖̎̇̀T̷̢̬̰̪̉h̷̡̰̤́̓ë̵̙̖̟̏ý̶̤̖͓̽ ̴͖̀̿̄͒h̶̞̹̱̋̍ä̵̛̱͚̞́͂͝v̵̖̰̬̭̄ė̴̝̩́͗ ̸̠̃̏̀b̶̰̼̽̉́̓͜e̶̢̠͊̓͌e̸̗̹̘͕͠n̸̖̫̥͛ͅ ̸̢̢̛͌ȁ̶̗͆̊͛c̶͎̍͑̇̍t̵̖̝̘̒̏̈́͐į̸͔͓͊̃̿v̵͈̯̔̔̕ą̷̞͔͖͆ţ̸͍̣̋̄̿̊ȩ̷̻͚̓̾d̵̰͗͛.̴̢̬̲̆̾̈͝” Said the second figure.

W̵̥̪̜̃i̷̱̙̼̿͌l̶̡̟̖̼͌̌l̴̹̈́̉̂̋ ̷̛̗̜̩̼̍͌̎s̵͇͉͌̓͛ḧ̵͙̰́̈͜e̸͕͍̽͛̂̍ ̶̺̈̕r̴̘̬̞̫̄̅͛e̶̮̖͍̲͐m̷̜̆̍e̴̟͖̓̾ͅm̵̥͎̗̅̀͝b̷̡͇͓̄̌̆e̵̯̘̗̞͝r̸͉̝̦̥͛̽̈́?̴̰͎̰̞̌̔͋” Asked the first.

Second figure finished his scans and put the device away, only to pull up the device that had flashed her. “T̶̘̻̍ḧ̶̺̘̓ḯ̸͎͛ś̴̡̨̿ ̷͎̍̚w̸͈͉͛̓ĩ̵̳ḻ̶͐͊l̷̫̩̿̈́ ̶̣̃̀w̴̥͊a̵̭͝k̵̨̖̋e̷̬̍̃ ̸̲̓h̴̫̑e̸͇̖͆͛r̴̞̜̀̒ ̷̣̬̕b̷̗̲̄u̷̗̘̎t̷̡̪͗̒ ̵̺̿̕t̴̻̗̅͝h̸͍͎̿̈́e̸͎͇̿ ̵̇͘ͅĺ̷̳̚ȁ̷͇͚s̵̜̠͌ẗ̷̩̺ ̶͈̋͜ṯ̶͛̎e̷̜͂͝ͅn̷̠̔ ̶̙̱̌͝ś̶̞͙͂e̵̖̐͝c̸͈͘ơ̶̠̟n̵̡̔͝d̷̮̕s̸̲̽ ̵͔͔̒w̷̭̿̔i̸͗̚ͅļ̴̮͑l̶̳͙͋ ̸̺͕́b̴̬̙̑̂e̶̠͌̓ ̶̢̓͘ȇ̶̪͍r̴̻̬͗̆a̵̠͑s̷̞͙͊͒ě̶͈d̸̝̤̍.̷̠̈́͘ ̸͇̓́S̸̗̅̕h̷͎̥̆e̴̝͌ ̶̱̖̕w̷͙̦̆̊ḯ̴͚̞͛l̸͉̔̋l̸̳̄ ̴̧̩͝n̵̞̆o̵̠̥̚t̵͈͎̎ ̸̗̎r̴̡̖͂̄e̷̗͊͐m̵̢͕̏̒ẹ̴͌̾m̸̜̺̔b̸̬̀e̷̼̕ř̶̺ ̶͇̮͗b̸̰͌͊ẹ̵̛ì̴̖͠ṇ̴͊g̶̉ͅ ̴̬͗a̴̢͕̔̉b̵̛̞d̵̮̽u̸̟͆͑c̴͕͚̀t̷̘͍͊ḙ̷̦̋̽d̴͙̻̔.̸͇̌́” Second figure then activated the device and a new series of flashes hit her eyes.

As soon as she came to, she would find herself back in the crowd and with a sharp headache. Mizu then looked around, confused and nearly screamed in surprise when someone grabbed her arm but saw that it was Ruby. “Oh sweet cheese and crackers.”

Ruby frowned. “What?”

“You scared the crap out of me, Ruby. What the hell man?”

“You were gone for more than five minutes. I had to be sure you were okay.”

Mizu smiled at him. “That’s sweet. I’m fine.” She then winced and placed her fingers to her temple. “Except for this horrible headache. I don’t know where it came from.”

“Come on. Let’s get back to the runabout.” Ruby told her and they made their way out of the building first before Ruby tapped his badge under his civilian jacket and instructed the Runabout computer to transport them on board. Soon as they were on board, Ruby had Mizu sit down before he went to grab a medical tricorder. With a brief scan, he was not able to find anything besides the fact that she had a headache and did what the tricorder recommended to prescribe her. “There, that should help with the headache. Which is odd, you know? Headaches are very rare these days. Especially when you’re on the Starfleet Health Plan.” He joked.

Mizu smirked at him. “Funny. Just hurry up and get us underway. I am going to take a shower and get this grime off my skin. The one thing that I hate about coming here. Yuck.” She said as she disappeared into the next compartment.

“Yeah, I think I will take one right after you.” He said as he went to the pilot station and started going through the take off procedures.

-After a trip through warp…-

Ruby looked at Mizu, who sat at the co-pilot seat with her feet up and slouched comfortably in her seat…well as comfortable as you can get, as he himself sat there in the pilot seat. “I have a question for you.”

“Shoot.” She said as she twiddled her thumbs while staring up at the ceiling.

“If you made it to Captain someday, what ship would you want to command?” Ruby asked her.

Mizu smiled. “I’ve been thinking about that a lot actually. Why do you ask?”

Ruby shrugged his shoulders. “Well I know that once we do make it to that point, we’ll end up going our separate ways for sure. So I was just curious on what ship to look out for if I ever see you again.”

Mizu smiled some more. “Well what ship would you want to command?”

Ruby leaned back with a smile of his own. “The Odyssey Class.”

“Oooooo…Bold. One of the largest ships in the fleet, with the most advanced technologies on board. Of course, we probably won’t make Captain for at least ten or fifteen years. By then they could have something way better.” She told him.

Ruby shrugged his shoulders again. “Maybe. But the Odyssey makes a bold statement with her sheer size. I want to be able to go out there and be diplomatic and to show that the size of a ship is not to intimidate. It just means business. It means that we fully intend to get things done. It means that we are very serious about establishing peace and prosperity.”

Mizu laughed. “Oh boy. Starfleet Patriot to the bone.”

Ruby smirked. “What about you? What ship would you want?”

“I think the Sagan Class.” She told him.

Ruby frowned. “Isn’t that ship classified?”

Mizu laughed. “I don’t know where you get your tech books from but nah. I mean, the idea of it having some Borg integrated systems…maaaaaybe.”

Ruby sighed. “Mizu…you’re going to get into so much trouble one of these days.”

Mizu laughed again. “Relax. I didn’t do anything crazy. Besides, there was a commander on the planet we were on that was drunk and blabbing his mouth off. I actually did him a favor and deleted everything he had, after making a small copy for myself, so that he wouldn’t be an idiot and spill secrets that he shouldn’t have. But I also did inform the authorities. They should be picking him up by now. But then again, honestly. I don’t think it’s that big of a deal. Besides, ten…fifteen years from now…no one would care and the Sagan will be old anyways, much like the Odyssey.”

Ruby sighed again, “Yeah but that will just mean that the Constellation will likely get retired. I mean, Sagan looks like the kind of ship that would replace the Constellation.”

“Considering that one of the Sagan Class ships is going to be named the Stargazer. Yeah, probably.”

Ruby shook his head. “I thought Starfleet was going to get the idea from the Romulans, Klingons, Cardassians…you know, everyone just about, just keep retrofitting the ships rather than build whole new classes.”

Mizu shrugged her shoulders. “I can’t tell you what they are all thinking back at the design tables and what not, Ruby. Maybe the Constellation won’t be retired. I don’t know. We’re just Ensigns, not Admirals.”

Ruby sighed one last time. “Well, what is the reason that you would pick the Sagan?”

Mizu’s smile faded. “If it has integrated Borg technology, that just leaves me to believe that it will be designed to combat the Borg and defeat them once and for all. At least that’s what I hope. The Borg have been nothing but a threat for so many years. I want to be the Captain that some day…takes the Borg down by whatever means necessary.”

Ruby smirked. “Good luck with that. But you have to remember. Starfleet does not start wars. We only defend ourselves when necessary.”

Mizu shook her head. “In this particular case. We should. Just to get rid of them.”

“What about all the innocents that were assimilated against their will? The ones that we’re saving right now on that cube…the…the X-B’s?” He asked her.

“Well of course we’re still going to save them, if they can be saved. Look…it’s a hard subject, Ruby. I just would like a Sagan when I make Captain, okay?” She told him.

Ruby looked at his instruments and could see that they were about to drop out of warp. “So, Mizu. Have you checked our new assignment orders?” He asked her.

Mizu turned her head and looked at him. “No. New assignments usually come with bad news and I really had a fun time. Can we just return to the station and deal with the bad news later?”

Ruby chuckled, “Who said anything about it being bad?”

Mizu’s eyes lit up and she quickly brought her feet down and sat up straight in her seat just to turn it and stare directly at Ruby. “Spill it.”

Ruby shook his head. “Nah. Since you’ve chosen not to read your orders, like I have, then there will be no fun in spoiling the surprise!”

Mizu groaned loudly in annoyance. “Are you kidding me? Playing me at my own game. Boy you better tell me.”

Ruby laughed as the computer signaled that they were going to drop out of warp. “Nope. And don’t go looking for your orders. I deleted them.” The runabout then dropped out of warp and Ruby began navigating it towards the station.

Mizu’s eyes widened. “You? You read and deleted my orders? What happened to my Ruby and what the hell did you do to him?”

Ruby laughed some more. “What? You really think I wouldn’t pick up on some of your bad habits?”

“What if we get separated? What if we go to a different ship or station or get assigned to two completely different ice planets? And we’re like…on one side of the border and you’re on the other!” Mizu complained.

Ruby couldn’t help but laugh even more before shaking his head. “Nope. Look at me. Would I be this happy if we were going to be separated?”

“You’d be jumping for joy knowing that you finally got rid of your troublemaking buddy!”

Ruby shook his head. “And here I thought I was the troublemaker. I mean I did try to prank you back on that T’Kon space station with one of our own replicators.”

Mizu waved her hands and shook her head. “Do NOT change the subject, mister. What are our orders?!

Ruby laughed even more as the computer informed them of an incoming transmission. Ruby pulled it up and saw that it was coming from the Ops Center at the Devron Unity Starbase. “I told you, it is a surprise and I guarantee you are going to love it.” He then accepted the transmission to keep Mizu from nagging him. “Go ahead, Devron Ops.”

“Transmit your credentials please.”

“Transmitting them to you now.” Ruby tapped a few commands and then waited patiently.

“Confirmed. A route has been generated for you. Please follow without deviation. It is a busy day for us.”

“Understood, Devron Ops. Thank you!”

“You are welcome. And Welcome back. Ops out.” The transmission was then cut and Ruby entered the path into the computer so that the auto-pilot would follow it perfectly.

“I swear, I am going to hurt you if it’s bad.” Mizu glared at him.

Ruby’s smile had never faded, in fact it just grew bigger and bigger the closer they got to the dry dock. “I don’t think you will.” He then pointed.

Mizu turned her head to look at where he pointed and saw the ship that was in the very dry dock that they were approaching. She immediately stood up, her eyes wider than ever and her mouth hanging open. “Nnnnooooooooooooo…”

Ruby laughed again and clapped his hands. Mizu turned to look at him with an evil glare. “This better not be a joke!” Ruby shook his head, pulled up both their orders and showed them to her. “You didn’t delete it?”

Ruby shook his head again. “Nope. Just archived it into my personal file so that it would look as though I did, so you wouldn’t be able to find it. But I wanted to make sure you got confirmation at least. This is our new home, Mizu.” Ruby then took control of the runabout and brought it to a complete stop just above the saucer for them both to get a good look at the registry and the name.

It read: NCC-73811, USS Sovereign

Mizu was jumping up and down with joy, repeating ‘ohmygod’ over and over again while Ruby sat there laughing at how incredibly excited and happy that she was. She then stopped and looked at him, giving him a bit of a glare for laughing at her. “You don’t understand it, do you?”

Ruby threw up his hands.

“This is one of the finest capital starships in the fleet! And it’s not just a Sovereign-Class. It is thee Sovereign. This is a ship that makes careers, Ruby! Our chances of getting promotions and achieving our goals in becoming Captains’ start today, here!” She pointed at the ship outside their forward view port. “On that ship!”

Ruby smirked. “I knew you’d love the surprise.”

She went over to him and slugged him on his upper arm. “That’s for not telling me! Now how about giving us a little fly around before we land? I want to go to the rear view port and drool in private.”

Ruby raised his brows while he rubbed the spot she hit. “Well okay then, Captain.” He teased and flinched when she went to slug him again, only to slug him twice with her saying ‘two for flinching!’ and was off towards the rear compartment.

As the runabout made its slow trek around the ship, Mizu was in the back with her hands and face pressed up against the view port. “Puuurrrrtiiii–!!” She giggled like a three year old as she stared at every bit of the ship as she could.

Comments

  • Such an exciting start to a new mission, a new season premiere! The mech-boxing set piece was a huge fun place to start. The friendship between Mizu and Ruby feels meaningful and lived-in; (I loved that fear of them being divided by ice planets or borders). And then we wrap it all up with the beauty shot of the Sovereign. The majesty of the new command is radiating so clearly. I can't wait to read this first adventure!

    March 21, 2022