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Part of USS Sovereign: Death by the Star and Bravo Fleet: Sundered Wings

Prologue/Chapter One

Secret Facility / USS Sovereign
March 2400
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Prologue

“Tomek! Tomek!” Shouted Soldar.

Tomek stepped through the doorway from the kitchen to their operations center with a look of annoyance on his face. “Must you shout? I was just next door.”

Soldar looked at him, the look of annoyance also on his face. “Don’t get snippy with me. I need an update on our sleeper agent. When will she be ready?”

Tomek sighed before he stepped up to a terminal and began to enter some commands. He brought up a couple of displays to show the progress of the nanites, one to show them what the subject is seeing and the other to show where they are in the quadrant. “Nearly there. They are about seventy percent complete.”

Soldar groaned, displaying his impatience quite loudly. “When you said that this would take a while, I had not thought it would take this long.”

Tomek looked to Soldar. “I did tell you exactly how long it would take for the nanites to fully configure a sleeper agent personality into the subject without detection. You just have been keeping yourself coped up in here for too long.”

Soldar glared at Tomek. “Don’t start with me.”

Tomek crossed his arms over his chest. “You know I am right. You need to get out some more. Breathe in some fresh air. It will do you some good.”

“And for the last time. I refuse to relax until my enemy is completely destroyed!” Soldar slammed his fist on the desk.

Tomek groaned in distaste before he turned around and made his way back to the kitchen.

Soldar saw the look and leapt up from his seat to grab Tomek’s hand. He then turned Tomek around and embraced him with a deep passionate kiss. It would be a moment before their lips parted. “I apologize, Tomek. When I was in the Tal’Shiar, I was always busy with work. Now that I have been caste out, I am here, doing nothing. I feel useless. Useless because of that swine in command of that ship.”

Tomek took Soldar’s hands in his. “I understand and I try not to get upset with you. I will see if we can get started with seventy percent, but there may be issues with the programming if we start now.”

Soldar led Tomek back to the terminal and the gestured to the displays. “Is there a way we can get her to do some minor work. Plant some bombs, rig power conduits to explode at a certain time or by a trigger. Anything that won’t compromise our work?”

Tomek stared at the displays for a moment, his mind racing with information, calculations and theories. “Yes. A low level operation may work with little to no consequences. She is part of the lower hierarchy, so maintenance…such as rigging a power conduit to explode by a trigger, would work.”

Soldar smiled. “How long will it take her to rig every single power conduit on a ship that size?”

Tomek pulled his hands away from Soldar’s and began to work. His fingers danced across the terminal as he implemented the adjustments and calculations. Then he looked to Soldar. “It could take another month, if we continue to be careful so that she does not get caught.”

Soldar nodded his head. “So be it. By then the sleeper agent program will be fully implanted.”

Tomek nodded with a small smile. “Precisely. Then we can put her into full swing and cause much chaos on board.”

Soldar took in a deep breath and exhaled heavily with a sigh. “Fine. Good. I cannot wait.” He then grabbed one of Tomek’s hands. “Let’s go for a walk and discuss how we would be able to convince the State that we are much more beneficial working for them, than not at all.”

Tomek’s smile grew. “Lets.”


Chapter One

“And then the artifact from Planet Rakt’Taq, he forgot to wear gloves before putting it inside the containment unit for cataloging! All his scales turned pink!!” Explained Elidia before laughing out loud, as Theo Lane did the same, where Mazak sat there, glaring hard at Elidia.

“I do not understand the humor of ones scales turning…pink.” Said Mazak.

Lane rubbed a tear out of his eye. “Well you see. For the longest time, before we understood the Gorn and you know, things mellowed out between the Federation and the Gorn…we were pretty afraid of you guys. I mean, sure it is all in the past now but you’re still a pretty scary looking Gorn! The look you got, the teeth, claws, big…muscular body…” Lane cleared his throat. “Point is, seeing your dark green scales suddenly pink…doesn’t make you look all that scary anymore.”

Mazak huffed and then turned his attention towards the main lounge door as it opened. There they can see Ruby and K’Roll coming in. Ruby had his jacket in hand while batting his forehead with one of the ends of the towel that was around his neck.

“Hey! Where have you two been?” Asked Elidia.

“Oh nothing special. Just trained with K’Roll here. Boy he does not go easy on you. Do you pal?” Ruby turned to face K’Roll when he asked.

K’Roll grunted. “Hardly be training if I went easy.” He said as he sat down at the table.

“Where is Mizu at?” Lane asked.

“Oh she decided to pick up some extra duties. She’s going around doing maintenance.” Ruby explained as he sat down as well and made his order when the waiter arrived.

After everyone else made theirs, Elidia had a frown on her face. “That’s unusual for her, isn’t it?”

Ruby shrugged his shoulders. “Maybe she’s tired of being an Ensign. I don’t know. But it doesn’t matter. If she wants to put in extra work, then good for her!”

“It would be of great honor to be promoted.” Said Mazak. “So she is wise to be requesting for more duties.”

Again Ruby shrugged. “Honestly. I don’t really care. If she wants to leave the ‘Ensign Gang’ then so be it.” Ruby saw the look on some of their faces, he still couldn’t read K’Roll’s and he gave up trying to read Mazak’s. “Hey, you know what?” Ruby decided to change the subject. “Did anyone notice that we had left the Cardassian Border?”

“Now that you mention it. We have been at warp for quite a while.” Said Lane.

“Yeah, we are actually almost doing warp nine.” Said Ruby.

“Wow. That’s over the cruising speed, isn’t it? Something big must be going on.” Said Elidia.

“Maybe that is why Mizu picked up extra duties.” Said K’Roll.

Ruby sighed. ‘So much for changing the subject. He grabbed his orange juice and chugged it before he pushed himself from the table and onto his feet. “Look. You guys can keep going on about picking up extra work or not. I am going to shower and get ready for my shift.”

“Yeah I best head back to Sickbay.” Said Lane as he got up as well.

“I can only hope that whatever it is we’re in a hurry to, don’t end up being that bad.” Said Elidia as she got up as well, Mazak and K’Roll have already got up before her.


Vakai stood there at one of many view ports in the briefing room. He stared out into space and not at the streaks of light as they traveled through warp. His thoughts were on the mission that had been given by Captain Maxwell from the Verity. Vakai had read the reports, he suspected something like this would happen and now it has. But they were being pulled away from the Cardassian border, just as they got started with coordinating relief efforts to some of the troubled worlds, whether caused by natural disasters or the usual; Pirates. What’s more, it’s the Remans. Vakai had no problem with the Remans really. But he was worried that his appearance, being a Romulan, might upset them. He did put it into the possibility that these Remans might conclude that after the super nova, that some Romulans had joined Starfleet. But a lot of them had been so secluded, enslaved, forbidden much information, it is unlikely that all of them will come to the same conclusion. Thus, Vakai feared that his presence will only cause more problems.

Vakai sighed and raised his hand to rub the bridge of his nose with his thumb and middle finger. They will just have to cross that bridge when they come to it. His attention returned to the room, where he could hear multiple small conversations happening between his senior staff. Then the door opened. As the last member of the senior staff had come and taken their seat, Vakai was ready to get this briefing started. He looked to Ryker and gave him a nod as he made his way to his seat.

“Thank you all for coming.” Ryker began as he made a couple presses on his padd. The view ports shifted into a dark tint and the lights dimmed before a hologram emitted from the center of the table. It displayed the mining station on a large asteroid. “I am sure that you are all aware that the Federation has received a call for help from the provisional government in the Velorum Sector. So Starfleet Command has tasked Fourth Fleet Command the job.”

“Do we know how many starships?” Asked Ward.

Ryker looked to her then back to everyone else. “All resources have been dispatched.”

“Well then. That sounds like another galactic crisis. Yet this does not look like one.” Said Gomo.

Ryker shook his head. “It is not. But this is our chance to make amends. It’s not just the Remans that requested for help, but there are also Romulans that have joined the provisional government. Not only that, the senate of the Romulan Star Empire has been dismantled.”

Everyone began to look around at each other, all sharing looks of shock and surprise before they returned their gaze to the commander.

“So there is no longer a Romulan Star Empire?” Maya asked.

“We don’t know yet. All we know is that it is complete chaos out there. But that’s not our job to figure out.” Ryker told them as he gestured to the hologram. “This is a mining station, currently under the power of the provisional government. It is located in the Prelion System.” Ryker pressed a command and the hologram changed to the system then displayed information on the planets. “Nothing habitable. Mostly gas giants and volcanic worlds.” Ryker then returned the hologram back to the station. “At this moment though, this station is one of the leading sources of material for the provisional government. If they lose this station, they lose a lot of critical resources.”

“So that means that the station is in trouble? That why I had to plot a course for the Prelion System, sir?” Asked Tagg.

Ryker made a single head nod. “Precisely, Lieutenant. They have reported to the provisional government that they are experiencing several malfunctions. Now, this could be due to the systems being old and degraded. Several processor and drilling units have failed. They lost power in three sections. And only one of three docking ports are operational.”

“Hardly sounds like a problem that requires a Starfleet vessel.” Said Gomez.

Ryker once again gave a single head nod. “That’s what Headquarters thought as well but because we strive in humanitarian aide and because we want to show the Reman and Romulan citizens of this provisional government that we can be trusted and that we can and will be there when we’re asked for help…we’re being sent to aide the station.”

Vakai then cleared his throat. “I know that a lot of us were either in the Academy or too young to help the Romulans before their sun went nova. But this ship has seen it and been through it. So another hope is that the presence of this ship, to some eyes, would show that there is still hope.”

Ryker looked back to everyone. “It’s going to be simple. We got the supplies and the equipment on board that we picked up from Deep Space Nine before we began our journey across Federation Space.” Ryker then looked to Gomez and Gatia. “I need you two to brief your team and prepare them. Once we arrive, both your teams will be dispatched to diagnose and repair their systems.”

“Copy that.” Said Gomez.

“Understood.” Said Gatia.

“Maya. I want your team to go with them. Not as a security detachment but in case the area’s that require repairs are too hazardous. Your team and suits will be able to determine whether or not people need to suit up before they proceed further. I want no accidents.” Ryker ordered.

Maya nodded her head. “Understood.”

“I don’t have orders for anyone else, at least not yet.” Ryker told them.

“We shall see once we get there.” Said Vakai. “Dismissed everyone.” With that, his officers began to file out one by one. Except for Sivol and Sucil. “Yes ladies?”

“Do you feel comfortable with where we are going?” Asked Sivol.

Vakai leaned back in his seat with a sigh. “I don’t have much of a choice. We go where the orders tell us to.” He told her.

“I understand that. But we would be close to the Romulan Free States…the Tal’Shiar.” Sivol explained.

“And the Romulan Republic will be a lot closer. Look. I have put it all behind me. Soldar is gone. I don’t know if my parents are alive or not, but it could be that they are lying low. Nevertheless, we have a duty to do.” Vakai told her. Then he looked to Sucil. “Are you going to bring up my trauma as well?”

Sucil shook her head. “No. It’s about the Remans.”

“Go on.” Said Vakai.

“Well. We don’t have much information but we know from the Enterprise crew’s experience that they are telepathic.” Sucil explained.

Vakai nodded his head. “I read the reports.”

“Well. I’m a little uncomfortable with that.” She told him.

Vakai raised his brows. “You’re Betazed. Why would you be uncomfortable?”

“Right now, we don’t know if any of them are actual criminals. What if they try to read our minds, or yours for that matter?” She asked.

Vakai pushed himself out of his seat and then pushed it up against the table. “From what the reports say, we do not know if all of them have telepathic abilities. Two, we don’t know exactly what those telepathic abilities are. We’re very limited on that knowledge. Point is. None of the information stated that they were anything like Betazoids. But I have you and Sivol.”

“Me?” Sivol asked.

“I know Vulcans have some telepathic abilities as well. If either of you two sense that our minds are being probed by a Reman, you let me know immediately and I will deal with it.” Vakai told them. “Will that work for you two?”

Sucil nodded her head. “Absolutely.”

“Yes, Captain.”

Vakai looked to Sivol. “I will be fine. It’s just another mission. Anything else?” He asked as he looked at both of them.

“No, Captain.” Said Sucil before she turned around and left the briefing room.

“No. But I will prep Sickbay for casualties. There could still be some malnurished citizens from the harsh treatment they had to endure over the years.” Said Sivol.

Vakai smiled. “Good thinking. I’ll be sure to pass your services on to the leader of the mining facility.”

“And we will be waiting.” Sivol smiled before she left the briefing room.

Now alone to his thoughts, he reset the room’s settings so that the lights and view ports returned to normal. Vakai then returned to the view port he had stood next to before and began to stare out into space once more.

Comments

  • 1: Sleep agents? What a way to get started! Not sure how I feel about nanites. They better not be playing with Borg tech or I'm having my ship flee this galaxy! 2: Ensign Gang! Love this idea. I've got to start developing some of my junior crew more now that I have a feeling for how I want my senior staff to be portrayed. 3: Can't wait for the explosion of emotions when the good Captain and Soldar (hopefully) come face to face. Blasts from the past are always good for fantastic writing. Can't wait to see what is to come.

    May 30, 2022
  • You got me laughing from the start with “Hardly be training if I went easy.” I have to imagine K’Roll coming at them with swords and a phaser set to kill!! Overall, this was a thoughtful start to the mission, introducing the stakes very clearly. Not only is the Reman provisional government relying on the Sovereign’s support, I enjoy how personal a mission this is for Vakai. His concern that he could be a liability on this mission showed his wisdom as a leader. As the chapter went on, I enjoyed the multiple layers of that liability: Vakai could be compromised by the Remans through their political beliefs, through his personal experiences, or even if the Remans were to get telepathic access to his mind! Clearly this is not “just another mission”. Worrisome! I also really, really love the theme of this being mission of redemption for Starflelet, offering hope after relations fell apart in the supernova.

    June 4, 2022