Part of USS Gagarin (Archive): Behind Enemy Lines and USS Saratoga: Behind Enemy Lines

8 – Behind Enemy Lines

USS Gagarin / USS Knight
March 2401
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The fight continued as the two ships exchanged fire between them and the enemy, while three ships had already been destroyed and three remained. They had just received word that the hazard team had completed their assignment and were successful. They were currently on their way back to the ship, soon they would be able to start the third and final phase of their plan.

Tajir had ordered the Crimson Knights to break formation from the Gagarin to meet up with the shuttle and escort them back to safety. The ship moved around for another strike on the remaining Breen ship, and it seemed the two ships were doing some sort of dance as they continued releasing fire upon the enemy. They took heavy hits as well though their shields and ablative armor seemed to be holding strong at least for now.

The Saratoga was taking some hits from the two Jem’Hadar fighters they were taking on. Though their shields seem to be holding strong from what they could tell, they were also giving the two fighters hell as they continued to give them everything they had. “The Breen ship has lost power,” came Aleish’s voice from tactical just as they let out a spread of photon torpedoes and just as the ship exploded causing the Gagarin to shake from the blast wave.

“Sir, one of the Jem’Hadar fighters has noticed our fighters guarding the shuttle and has turned to make a beeline at them,” Rar spoke up looking over at Tajir.

“Maneuver the Gagarin in between the Jem’Hadar fighter and the Crimson Knights,” Tajir ordered as Zann began to move the ship to come in between the ship and their fighter squadron.

“Sir, they are opening fire on our fighters.” Aleish almost yelled out.

Tajir looked at Lieutenant Raro, “maneuver us as a shield against those weapons.” Tajir ordered which caused everyone to look at the captain, they knew they would be showing their vulnerable side compared to facing them head-on. “Do it!” Tajir ordered not giving them a chance to argue.

“Aye sir,” Zann replied as she turned the ship as it moved to come in between the Jem’Hadar fighter and their fighter squadron just as the weapons hit them hard. There was an explosion on the bridge causing the captain to go flying from his chair as others struggled to remain upright.

“Captain!” Tilana said as she rushed over to where Tajir was, a piece of shrapnel was sticking out of his back from the exploding console that was directly behind his chair. She hung her head after confirming her fear, he had died from the impact. Everyone on the bridge looked horrified before looking at Tilana who was now the acting captain. She had him beamed directly to sickbay for the doctor to see if there was any chance that the symbiont might have survived and if it could be transferred to a different host before she stood up looking at everyone.

She looked around the bridge for a moment, “fire everything we got at that ship!” She ordered as she walked back to her chair, the chair Tajir was sitting at was destroyed by the console explosion. The Gagarin began to move to face the enemy ship and unleashed fire as the Saratoga had done the same from their behind.

“They are losing power,” Zilan replied from the ops station.

“Take them out!” Tilana ordered as the ship opened fire again and a short time later the ship was destroyed leaving one ship remaining that the Saratoga would deal with. “Have the shuttle dock in our aft shuttle bay, and have the fighters team up with the Saratoga to take out the remaining Jem’Hadar fighter,” Tilana said as Khadija just nodded.

A short time later the shuttle docked and the fighters went off to assist with the remaining enemy ship. “Let Fleet Captain Dex know that the hazard team was successful, we are breaking off to begin phase three,” Tilana said. “Also inform her of Captain Derohl’s death,” she added.

“Aye sir,” Khadija replied in a solemn voice.

“Lieutenant Raro set course for the control center,” Tilana ordered.

“Yes sir,” Raro replied as she tapped a few controls and the Gagarin began to move away from the Saratoga.

Silence had filled the bridge as Tilana sat in her chair staring off towards the corner of the ship near the viewscreen. Sat there thinking about how the captain gave his life to save all the officers onboard the fighters and the shuttle, if he hadn’t ordered the ship to become the shield they all would have been destroyed. He gave the ultimate sacrifice, though it was still painful as he now left a widow at home who was expecting their first child together.

They had only served together for a few short months but she had gotten to know him on a more personal level than just captain and first officer. She began to rely on him for his advice, or encouragement during rough days. She knew he inspired everyone on this ship and was tough when he needed to be. Now he was gone, gave the ultimate sacrifice, now she would step up to fill those shoes that he left behind to lead this crew the way he did. Whether it be until this mission was over or for the long hall as she wasn’t sure what would happen after this mission was over.

“We have reached the control center,” came the voice of Raro that broke the silence that had once filled the bridge.

Tilana seemed to snap out of her trance at the voice of Zann and nodded in her direction, the Gagarin was a little ways away but still within firing range. “Aleish bring weapons back online and begin firing on the control center,” Tilana ordered.

“Aye sir,” Aleish replied as the ship unleashed its weapons on the control center.

“Kriia to the bridge,” came the almost frantic voice of their doctor.

“Go ahead,” Tilana said as she could tell something was up with how the doctor sounded.

“I think you and Lieutenant Virahl need to get down to sickbay immediately,” Kriia said before ending the channel without explaining more.

Tilana looked confused now wasn’t the best time to be leaving the bridge though the way that the doctor had sounded she knew this was urgent. She thought it had something to do with the Derohl symbiont. She had every confidence in Than as he was their current acting executive officer and knew what needed to be done. “Than you have the bridge,” she said before tapping her commbadge. “Lieutenant Virahl please meet me in sickbay immediately,” Tilana replied before she entered the lift and Than took over. The Gagarin would continue with their plan.

After a short time, Tilana arrived outside of sickbay, on her journey down there she could see the damage the ship had taken from their battle. She could only imagine how busy sickbay was right now. She saw Nilah standing near the door waiting for her to arrive, “do you know why we are here?” Nilah asked confused as to why they were both summoned to sickbay so urgently.

“I have one guess,” she said, blowing air out of her cheeks as not everyone knew about the captain yet. She looked at her for a moment, the youthfulness of the young Trill woman who was probably going to be the next host of the Derohl symbiont. “Captain Derohl was killed right before you got back, he ordered the ship to act as a shield from the Jem’Hadar fighter that was going after the shuttle and fighter squadron.” Tilana said solemnly, “my guess is the doctor was able to save the Derohl symbiont and they need to get it into a new host quickly.” Tilana said as could see the reaction of the young woman in front of her. The pain that they were all feeling, the loss that they felt about their leader. Tears began to swell up in the young lieutenants’ eyes before she batted them away.

Taking a deep breath Nilah nodded as they both walked in to see the doctor near the body of Tajir. “Tell me you have some news?” Tilana said looking at the older Caitian woman who turned around to see the two standing there.

“Yes, I was able to save the Derohl symbiont. It is currently stable but as you know we need to get it in a new host post haste.” She began looking at Nilah, “I just got done talking with the Trill Symbiont Commission. They have said that you have passed all required tests and have been cleared to be joined. Under normal circumstances, this would be done on Trill but these are not ordinary circumstances and they gave me clearance to perform the procedure as I have experience.” Kriia replied, looking at the two women.

Nilah stood there for a moment as she glanced at the deceased body of Tajir saying a little prayer. Looking back at the doctor, “I understand and accept the Derohl symbiont.” Nilah replied before turning back to Tilana.

“Good luck Lieutenant,” she said, placing a hand on her shoulder knowing this would be the last time she would be Nilah Virahl. When the procedure was over she would become Nilah Derohl, tears began to run down her face knowing that they were able to save the symbiont even with the captain gone.

“Thank you, sir,” Nilah replied.

“Keep me updated doctor,” Tilana said as the doctor nodded before the two walked away to begin the procedure. Tilana looked around sickbay at the wounded, some were covered waiting to be moved to the morgue. Walking out of sickbay she leaned against the bulkhead closing her eyes for a moment as tears began to run down her cheek.

After a few moments of standing there collecting herself, she made her way back to the bridge. Time seemed to stand still with the lift seemingly going slower by the moment as it traveled towards its destination. A short time later the lift finally arrived with the doors opening, exiting she looked at Than who got up from the chair just as the control center was destroyed.

“Sir the control center has been destroyed,” Than reported even though she could see with her own eyes. “The Knight is on its way to meet up with us, they have finished destroying all of the weapons platforms.” Than had said as he stood aside for her to take her seat before returning to his station.

Taking a moment to pull up the map, two fleet yards had two battlecruisers that were making repairs. Though their progress was halted by their systems being taken down, she didn’t want them to find other means to repair themselves. Seems their shields were down and are non-operational from their previous sensor scans of the area. She had sent Commander Rayu Isha the data of their plan on destroying the bases before she turned to Lieutenant Raro. “Take us to these coordinates, take out the battlecruiser and fleet yard I have marked alpha. The Knight will take out the one I have marked beta,” Tilana ordered.

“Aye sir,” Raro replied before moving the Gagarin toward their destination.


Commander Rayu Isha was sitting in her chair as the Knight moved on to meet up with the Gagarin when they received the latest battle plans. She reviewed them and what was marked as one of their main targets at this point. She sent the coordinates to Jerra, she didn’t have to say anything as Jerra automatically adjusted the ship’s coordinates and the ship began to move in its new direction.

Isha sat back in her chair lost in thought as the bridge seemed eerily quiet, though it seemed to be the new norm as of late. When not barking out orders everyone remained silent, deep in their thoughts. War was taking a toll on everyone and it was beginning to show, although out of the three ships they had taken no damage. She had been grateful for that but everything still weighed heavily on her and her crew.

The situation with the changeling and finding their real first officer dead took them by surprise. If the engineers hadn’t found the real McKnight, who knows how any of this would have turned out. She could only imagine what damage it would have done, how quickly things would have backfired on not only them but the whole squadron.

A short time later they arrived at their destination, on the right of them they saw the Gagarin barreling down fire upon the Jem’Hadar battlecruiser and the fleet yard it was docked in. Their target was a bit farther ahead on their left, “scan them for any signs of powering up.” Isha ordered looking at Ledire Turi at the science station.

“Aye sir,” Turi replied as she began to scan the battlecruiser. After a few moments, she turned to face the captain, ‘negative sir.” Turi replied which was good news, they didn’t need them powering up as soon as they began unleashing their weapons upon them and the fleet yard they were attached to.

“Sehl get a targeting solution,” Isha ordered.

“Yes ma’am,” came his reply with a wide grin as he’s been itching to blow something up other than the platforms since they began. A few moments later he got what he wanted and sent it to Isha, “I got the solution for you.” Sehl replied.

Looking over it, she was happy with the plan and nodded, “fire!” she exclaimed, giving the word for them to begin to unleash their furry upon the battlecruiser and fleet yard. Isha watched as each one hit with precision, seeing explosions happening at each targeted area. She was oddly enough getting some satisfaction not because she enjoyed the battle, she was a scientist at heart. This was for those within the Deneb sector under the tyranny that was the Dominion, worlds being overrun and people being forced to serve them or die. Though she kept that to herself and just watched as they continued to volley their target until it finally exploded under pressure.

“Sir, both alpha and beta targets have been destroyed,” Sehl replied from his station.

“We are getting new targets from the Gagarin,” Piyu Jaiett replied from beside the commander. Kisha Pazal was handling engineering leaving him to concentrate on other matters at the moment. “We are to break off and take out as many asteroid bases as possible while they go after the other fleet yards,” Piyu added, looking at the Isha.

“Understood,” Isha replied before looking back at the map of the area. She marked the ones that were bases while leaving the random asteroids that had nothing on them alone. She sent them to Jerra and the ship moved away from the Gagarin and began to head towards their first target. 

Both ships would continue to destroy as many fleet yards and bases as possible before reinforcements found out they lost contact with Lungurn or stumbled upon them during a routine patrol. She hoped that they would be able to leave a huge dent in their operations and ability to repair their ships by the time they were finished.

Comments

  • Wow! I wanted shenanigans and shenanigans is what I got! I don't think I was anticipating the Captain as a casualty but you threw me for a loop with that one. The trill as a species are my all-time favourite in all of trek lore and the attention to detail you exhibit when dealing with this is well written and realistic. Im glad Derohl is able to live on in some shape and this bit of good news almost felt like an oasis in the wastelands of combat. Im glad to hear the mission was a success despite the losses. You've done this mission justice thus far and I can't wait to see what's in store next!

    June 6, 2023
  • Unknown Author

    I absolutely enjoyed reading your story! Your writing style is captivating and your characters are truly engaging. Keep up the excellent work!

    June 6, 2023
  • Death comes for anyone at any moment during war, and Tajir‘s death was exactly that, unexpected and without any particular reason. The crew will be left to wander why him? Why that console and not a different one? To me, there is also the question tactically of why he gave that order. Yes, the fighters were taking a beating, but their purpose is to prevent maneuverable enemy ships from being able to swarm the less maneuverable cruiser. By bringing the cruiser in as he did, he cost himself, and almost certainly some other crew, their lives. It will be interesting to see how this plays out when the symbiont settles into its new host. The ramifications of his death will also be interesting beyond the squadron, to see how it affects Commodore Jori as well given her relationship with him.

    June 6, 2023
  • Tajir really stepped into the spotlight with this chapter! (And, I guess, not for the best of reasons!) Based on his thoughtful introductions, I hadn't expected him to be such an assertive and tactical leader. But then BAM-ZOOM you pulled the rug right out from under me. I didn't expect Tajir to be sacrificed under the Breen's boot. Brutal! Tirana's reflections on his loss made for a heartfelt reading. You've made me curious about how her reactions to his death will shape her as a commanding officer, even if only in an acting capacity. Transplanting the Derohl into another member of the crew is heavy duty! That's just begging for some taboo reassociation behaviours.

    June 10, 2023
  • What a thrilling chapter for Saratoga Squadron! I really liked your style of writing the ensuing battle, made me feel as though I was in the battle itself and on the bridge, very well done! I did not expect Captain Derohl to go out like that! But I loved the way the spotlight focused on Tilana and the take over of command, overall I loved every second of this chapter! Looking forward to reading the next one!

    June 14, 2023