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Old Wounds - Star Trek: Victorious (A Star Trek Online Fanfic)

ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
edited March 2015 in Ten Forward
Old Wounds - Star Trek: Victorious (A Star Trek Online Fanfic)

Old wounds never heal. On the surface, the scars may have long vanished, but deep inside... the pain lingers. A cold, malevolent pain - a reminder, whispering; "we're still here". It is not a question of healing the pain, nor should it be. It's a question of living with it. To all things, there is a bane. We should not let ourselves fall to it. - Capt. Jean Luc Picard (ret.), Federation Ambassador to Vulcan (ret.).
Prologue: Consensus.

Within the Collective, there is chaos. The consensus has been broken. Where there were many, now there are none. Species 5618 have introduced a disease into the Collective - a drone severed from the whole. Many of the Borg have now fallen to the chaos. The whole is fractured. Special measures must now be taken.

Consensus has been reached. Order must be restored. Assessing options. Options assessed. Consensus reached. Initiating selection process. Consensus reached. Drone 25948-Gamma. Drone is entering Regeneration alcove. Encoding genetic and memory data to Central Nexus. Cube 11968 relocating to Unimatrix 01. Initialising primary connection to 25948-Gamma. Connection established. The Collective must survive. We will adapt.

All drones have established primary connection to 25948-Gamma. Establishing processing matrix. Drone 25948-Gamma, new designation; Central Processing Nexus 001.

I am the Borg. The Collective must grow.

Chapter One: Battle of Archanis IV.

40 years later...


Three bright yellow pulses of light streak forth across the viewscreen of the U.S.S. Victorious, guiding themselves across the hull of a Negh'var-Class Battleship, going dim for a single, fleeting moment, before brilliant explosions burst from within the Klingon warship. Suddenly, a chiming alert sounds out through the bridge.

"That got their attention!" Lieutenant Tala calls out from her tactical station, "the Klingons are ignoring the Lexington and locking weapons on us!"

Ryan sits down in his command chair, bracing himself. "All hands, brace for impact! Helm, evasive pattern Ro-Four! Lieutenant Tr'zarac, fire at will! All phasers!"

The Ambassador-Class cruiser rolls 45-degrees on her starboard side and 'pitches up', evading a Vorcha-Class Attack Cruiser's main disruptor beam before raking her with vicious streaks of orange phaser blasts from the aft phaser banks, followed by the main phasers igniting against a pair of K'vort-Class Birds-of-Prey as they bombard the Victorious with disruptor pulses.

The bridge shakes with each weapon impact, before shuddering violently. "One K'vort destroyed! The other is breaking off! They're cloaking!"

Ryan keeps his eyes focused on the viewscreen. "Fire torpedoes!"

The red photon torpedoes make short work out of the shieldless vessel as it ignites into a bright orange fireball.

"Captain, the remaining Klingon forces are breaking off." Alpha is typing away at his console as a transmission comes through. "Report from Admiral Yanishev, sir. The Klingon fleet is leaving the system at warp 8."

"Stand down from General Quarters. All decks, yellow alert." Ryan stands from the central command chair, looking around as the bridge is filled by the main lighting and as the tubed alert lighting shifts from the harsh blood-red to a more subtle mustard yellow. "How's the Lexington?"

"She has sustained heavy damage to her warp drive. Captain Jade is reporting that she believes they will be able to effect repairs in approximately 6 hours. The U.S.S. Montgomery Scott is en route to assist."

"Alright. Damage report."

Commander Michael Carter looks at the console to his right as he reads off the damage report. "Minor. Plasma leak on Deck 8. Power conduits have blown on Decks 10-through-12. Repair crews are en route."


"12 injured, 3 major. No fatalities. The Klingons were focused on the Lexington until the last minute."

Ryan sighs as the Lexington lingers on the viewscreen, smiling a little as the 4th Fleet drops to impulse ahead; a dozen Excelsior-Class starships with 3 Akiras and the Galaxy-Class U.S.S. Henderson Field. The longer the Klingons keep trying to break through Federation defences in this system, the greater the chance they will succeed. Starfleet has been spread too thin due to the Borg invasion of the Cestus Sector coupled with repeated Romulan sabre rattling and an attempt to attack Vulcan itself. Sooner or later, the 4th Fleet is going to run out of ships to mount a defence and the Klingons know it.

The new Klingon offensive started around the same time as intercepted communications suggesting that the Empire was facing repeated incursions into its own space from Sector 295, on the far side of Klingon Space. Ryan can't help but feel that the two are clearly connected, but why would the Klingons react to a threat from the opposite side of the Empire by launching a new offensive against the Federation during a ceasefire? What could have them so desperate to gain ground?

Ryan's thought process is soon disrupted by the chiming from Ops indicating an incoming hail. Alpha turns slightly to face him. "Incoming signal from the U.S.S. Mauritania, Captain. Priority One distress signal."

"That's a disaster call!" Carter stands from his chair and strolls to Ryan's side.

"I cannot get a lock on the transmission. There is a high degree of interference."

Ryan looks at the viewscreen, morbidly. "On speakers."

There is a sharp crackle over the speakers, accompanied by a digital whine, shifting from high to low pitch before the panicked voice comes across the bridge, "This is the... Maurit... reque... istance... heavy atta... 256 by 39... Being boar... mayday! Mayday!... May... ayday!" The transmission is badly garbled, the voice of the sender interrupted repeatedly by static. In the background, the Victorious bridge crew can hear the crackle of flames and what sounds like phaser fire.

Ryan takes a deep breath before leaning on Alpha's console. "Where is she?"

Alpha taps his console repeatedly for a few moments. "The Mauritania is currently located in the Azure Nebula. Her current assignment is a standard sector patrol in case of Klingon attack."

"Nearest ship?"

"We are the only combat-ready starship in range, sir."

"Typical." Ryan starts to walk back towards his seat. "Red Alert! Helm, set course to rendezvous with the Mauritania!"

The Alert klaxon sounds as the lighting dims once again. The bridge crew frantically make moves to bring the ship back to combat stations. The helmsman calls out across the bridge, "Course laid in!"

"Warp Nine! Engage!"


Meanwhile, at the edge of the system, cloaked, the I.K.S. Kahless, commanded by Lieutenant General Torpal, Son of Megh'bar, watches the events transpiring. On the dark, humid bridge of the Negh'var-Class warship, Torpal watches the U.S.S. Victorious go to warp on the viewscreen. A technician turns from his station. "General, we are intercepting a Federation distress call coming from the Azure Nebula! The transmission is badly garbled. The Federation Heavy Cruiser is on an intercept course!"

Torpal leans back in his command chair, the eyepatch over his left eye shimmering red very slightly in the light. After a few moments, he finally speaks. "Set a course. Follow them. Stay at the edge of sensor range."

"Cha'vai!" The helmsman starts tapping on his controls. "Ready to engage!"

Torpal gestures forward with his right hand. "Mak'cha."


OOC: Yes, I'm going to try to finish it this time! :P

So, leave feedback down below, and I'll hopefully get Chapter 2 up tomorrow. Questions too.
Post edited by Unknown User on


  • lessley00lessley00 Member Posts: 1,200 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    Is this in 2409? Or is it sooner?
    Captain Joseph Riker, U.S.S. Odyssey==General V'Mar, U.S.S. Blackwater-A==Admiral Laura Holmes, U.S.S. Forward Unto Dawn
    Grand Master Thotok, son of Koloth, I.K.S. Sompek==Dahar Master Shanara, I.K.S. Balth'Quv

    Admiral R'Tath V'Tirex, R.R.W. Dhael Glohha'enh==Commander Ta'eth Korval, R.R.W Hachae ch'Rhian==Admiral Vranuk, R.R.W Delevhas
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    lessley00 wrote: »
    Is this in 2409? Or is it sooner?

    The Prologue is set in 2365-6, around the time of 'I, Borg', but the story itself is set in 2413-4 - I take the route that time in-game proceeds at a similar rate to that IRL, and as the date was 2409 when the game launched in 2010, it would now be 2414 in 2015. Disparity in the storyline in my stories compared to the game storyline is because my character in this story is still Level 20-30 and so hasn't reached that point of the storyline.
  • lessley00lessley00 Member Posts: 1,200 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    ryan218 wrote: »
    The Prologue is set in 2365-6, around the time of 'I, Borg', but the story itself is set in 2413-4 - I take the route that time in-game proceeds at a similar rate to that IRL, and as the date was 2409 when the game launched in 2010, it would now be 2414 in 2015. Disparity in the storyline in my stories compared to the game storyline is because my character in this story is still Level 20-30 and so hasn't reached that point of the storyline.

    If this is a sto inspired fanfic, why is everyone using age-old canon ships like Ambassadors and Excelsiors?
    Captain Joseph Riker, U.S.S. Odyssey==General V'Mar, U.S.S. Blackwater-A==Admiral Laura Holmes, U.S.S. Forward Unto Dawn
    Grand Master Thotok, son of Koloth, I.K.S. Sompek==Dahar Master Shanara, I.K.S. Balth'Quv

    Admiral R'Tath V'Tirex, R.R.W. Dhael Glohha'enh==Commander Ta'eth Korval, R.R.W Hachae ch'Rhian==Admiral Vranuk, R.R.W Delevhas
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    lessley00 wrote: »
    If this is a sto inspired fanfic, why is everyone using age-old canon ships like Ambassadors and Excelsiors?

    Because they're in the game and it's the ship my character flies. It's also a great ship in-game.
  • jorantomalakjorantomalak Member Posts: 7,133 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    lessley00 wrote: »
    If this is a sto inspired fanfic, why is everyone using age-old canon ships like Ambassadors and Excelsiors?
    ryan218 wrote: »
    Because they're in the game and it's the ship my character flies. It's also a great ship in-game.

    Yup STO has most of the old canon ships ingame ....do you even play lessley?

    cause youd know this fact if you did
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    patrickngo wrote: »
    ah hell, I just figured your Starfleet wasn't handing out Admiral's rank like the prizes at the bottom of a cereal box or promoting Cadets with a year in the field to the top ranks...

    Well, mine doesn't. :P Ryan was an ensign aboard a Miranda Class for two years before the Battle of Vega Colony (while my current in-game character is fairly new, the LC character is based on a character I created when STO was in beta). So...

    Ryan's rank is still Commander.
  • lessley00lessley00 Member Posts: 1,200 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    In my sto fanfic my person is flying an Odyssey called the enterprise-f and he is not andorian
    Captain Joseph Riker, U.S.S. Odyssey==General V'Mar, U.S.S. Blackwater-A==Admiral Laura Holmes, U.S.S. Forward Unto Dawn
    Grand Master Thotok, son of Koloth, I.K.S. Sompek==Dahar Master Shanara, I.K.S. Balth'Quv

    Admiral R'Tath V'Tirex, R.R.W. Dhael Glohha'enh==Commander Ta'eth Korval, R.R.W Hachae ch'Rhian==Admiral Vranuk, R.R.W Delevhas
  • lessley00lessley00 Member Posts: 1,200 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    Yup STO has most of the old canon ships ingame ....do you even play lessley?

    cause youd know this fact if you did

    Oh I play, I just have a different idea when it comes to fanfics
    Captain Joseph Riker, U.S.S. Odyssey==General V'Mar, U.S.S. Blackwater-A==Admiral Laura Holmes, U.S.S. Forward Unto Dawn
    Grand Master Thotok, son of Koloth, I.K.S. Sompek==Dahar Master Shanara, I.K.S. Balth'Quv

    Admiral R'Tath V'Tirex, R.R.W. Dhael Glohha'enh==Commander Ta'eth Korval, R.R.W Hachae ch'Rhian==Admiral Vranuk, R.R.W Delevhas
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    lessley00 wrote: »
    Oh I play, I just have a different idea when it comes to fanfics

    Fair enough. I actually had Ryan flying an Exeter-Class in the LCs until he reached Commander in-game, and my VA main flies an Odyssey and a Vesta.

    So, anyone got any other questions relating to the story?
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    Okay, I lied. I decided that I wanted to write Chapter 2 and get it out tonight so I can get Chapter 3 done tomorrow. Enjoy!

    Chapter Two: For the Empire.

    As the Kahless slips through the inky black of space, Torpal is in his Quarters with his uniform jacket off and only his fur under-tunic and uniform trousers on as he practices with his Mek'leth, performing fluid motions as the weapon cuts through the air slowly. Over the speakers, the soft melody of what amounts to Klingon Classical music, with light percussion and brass, fills the room.

    Then, a chime rings through the chamber, as Torpal lets out a growl. "Enter!"

    An Orion KDF Officer walks in, wearing a black, panelled jumpsuit with red shoulders. Torpal has no objections to having aliens on his crew, and actually believes it would be dishonourable to reserve the glory of battle for Klingons only, but he had his limits. And so does this officer. Not all Orions are exactly pleased with the attire their race is famous for. The uniform is Torpal's way of giving non-Klingon Officers a way of looking martial and appropriate while allowing them to be comfortable and express some uniqueness - after all, not all races are as sturdy as Klingons. The Orion speaks up as she hands Torpal a PADD. "Reports from High Command, General. The Borg have taken the Chu'Qash System and destroyed the Order of Ka'chok. The Chancellor has ordered the 5th Battle Fleet to mount a defensive at Karati XII."

    "And yet he continues to waste the lives of countless warriors and countless vessels in a senseless crusade!"

    Torpal roars as he throws his blade across the room, the Orion grimacing as it slices through the wooden panelling below his Bat'leth.

    "Bah! What use is it to defeat the Federation if we cannot defeat the Borg at the same time?!"

    "Honour and Glory?" The Orion shrinks back slightly as Torpal quickly turns his head to look at her. Torpal spends a moment examining her stature; defensive... yet courageous. Torpal calms himself down, shaking his head.

    "There is no glory or honour in destroying an empire to win a war. More noble and glorious to end a war and save an empire. The greatest enemy a warrior can face is his own stubborn pride. I fear our leaders have failed to remember this lesson. 'The wind does not respect a fool'."

    "But the Federation started this war, didn't they?"

    "Ha! The Federation! The United Federation of Arrogant Fools is what they should call themselves! Indeed, when they failed to take seriously our warnings of the Undine, they were arrogant, but that is no cause for war. Even our war with the Gorn, and the Federation's refusal to join us in that, was not justification for this bloody conflict we're in today. Our claims on the Regulus System... those worlds are sacred... and the Federation respected that. Under Martok, there was peace! Humans and Klingons worked as one for the greater glory! Now..." He snarls slightly as he picks up a blood-stained Klingon badge; that of his Brother, killed in battle. "Now both sides fight each other in senseless slaughter.

    "And even then, I was willing to fight. It was more honourable to obey my superiors than to refuse to fight our former allies. But now... We are fighting the Federation when we should be concentrating on the enemy who now sweeps across our space! The longer we delay, the more warriors we lose! They aren't even given the honour of a death in battle!"

    "May I make an observation, sir?"

    "Of course."

    "I've noticed that there are many Klingons who doubt the honour of the war with the Federation, but very few who are willing to act on it."

    "Hm?" Torpal looks at her, chuckling before bursting out into a full-on belly laugh. "This is true..." He raises an eyebrow at the Orion, "What is your name?"

    "Lieutenant Corani S'ian, General."

    "I don't see the mark of the KDF Academy on your sleeve. You are from T'lani's crew, I presume?"

    "You know Captain T'lani?"

    "She is an honoured member of my House - a ward of my father, before he was slain in battle during the war with the Gorn. She in an honourable warrior. I trust you will not disappoint." He picks up a metal badge, silver, in the shape of the emblem of his House, from his desk and draws his dk'tagh. "If you are prepared, you may join the ranks of the honoured guard of House Megh'bar. It is a great honour. As a member of House Megh'bar's Guard, you will be expected to give me your loyalty, but you will also be respected by my entire Family and our subjects. That emblem commands respect on this ship and serves as a badge of your honour. Only a rare few have been deemed so noble to join our House."

    " I... I am honoured." Corani slowly holds her palm out, and Torpal carefully slices the blade across the skin, just breaking the flesh.

    "Do not feel it necessary to clean the symbol." He holds the badge beneath her palm as the copper green blood steadily drips onto the metal. "It is a symbol of your blood oath." The blood seeps into every crevice, before Torpal takes a cloth and delicately wipes the upper tier of the badge, allowing the blood to fill the cracks between the symbols of the emblem and the edge. He then takes a small device the size of a pen from his desk and activates it, firing a red beam to the base of the badge, drying the blood and giving the badge a green highlight before fixing it to Corani's sleeve. He then takes a small roll of bandage tape and rolls it around Corani's hand.

    "Thank you, General. I am honoured you think me worthy."

    "And I am honoured to accept you into the Guard. Qapla'!"

    "Qapla'." With that, Corani walks out of the room, leaving Torpal to reflect on their conversation.
  • lessley00lessley00 Member Posts: 1,200 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    Not bad at all, keep up the good work Ryan
    Captain Joseph Riker, U.S.S. Odyssey==General V'Mar, U.S.S. Blackwater-A==Admiral Laura Holmes, U.S.S. Forward Unto Dawn
    Grand Master Thotok, son of Koloth, I.K.S. Sompek==Dahar Master Shanara, I.K.S. Balth'Quv

    Admiral R'Tath V'Tirex, R.R.W. Dhael Glohha'enh==Commander Ta'eth Korval, R.R.W Hachae ch'Rhian==Admiral Vranuk, R.R.W Delevhas
  • marcusdkanemarcusdkane Member Posts: 7,439 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    I'm enjoying it :cool:
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    patrickngo wrote: »
    point of order?

    Orions bleed orange. Klingons bleed a bluish-red that's almost purple. Vulcanoids (That's vulcans, Romulans etc.) bleed green.

    Ah, right. I couldn't actually find any canon sources regarding the colour of Orion blood, so I went with what seemed to make sense. Besides, Star Trek's pretty inconsistent as to Klingon blood; in Way of the arrior, Martok's blood is red despite it being established in ST:VI that it's supposed to be pink.

    Basically, unless I have a canon source, I'm going to improvise. Thanks for the note though.
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    OOC: As promised, Chapter 3. Chapter 4 will be up later tonight. These two chapters are pretty long-winded, so put the kettle on. ;)

    See if you can spot the Babylon 5 reference.
    Chapter Three: The Ghost Ship.

    Captain's Log, Stardate: 87735.35. U.S.S. Victorious.

    We are en route at maximum warp to the site of a Priority One distress signal from the Starship Mauritania. The Mauritania was on a combat patrol of the Azure Nebula when it came under heavy attack. The garbled distress signal indicates that she may have been boarded at the time the distress signal was sent. The identity of the attackers is unknown, so we are proceeding with shields up and all weapons armed. Our estimated arrival time is 10 minutes.

    End of Log.

    As the Victorious streaks across the stars to rendezvous with the Mauritania, Ryan is on the bridge leaning over one of the aft science stations with a schematic of an Excelsior-Class Starship. "The Mauritania."

    Alpha is processing the ship's mission logs as fast as his android brain can process, while still leaving enough processing power available to respond to his captain, "Yes sir. It is a Type B 2410 Refit of the Excelsior Class, armed with Type 10 Phasers and Quantum Torpedoes."

    "Any idea what could have overwhelmed it so quickly?"

    "Any answer would be mere speculation. I need more data."


    "The Mauritania is equipped with an advanced transwarp drive. It should have been able to escape a Klingon attack."

    "What if the Klingons came from the nebula?"

    "The Klingons are typically hesitant to begin an attack run in that area of the nebula, sir. The sirillium is extremely volatile."


    "Unlikely. The Romulans typically commence jamming before they begin their assaults."


    "The Tholians do not board humanoid vessels unless there is something of value. They have captured Excelsior-Class ships of this configuration before using their conventional methods."

    "Alright, Alpha. Who?"

    Alpha is about to speak when the helmsman turns in his seat. "Captain, the Mauritania is now in visual range."

    Ryan and Alpha leave the science station, stepping around Tactical. "Put her onscreen. Drop to impulse power." Ryan sits down in his command chair while Alpha retakes the Ops position. the viewscreen quickly changes to show the Excelsior-Class starship adrift. The lighting is inactive and the warp nacelles are completely dark. There are small carbon scores on the saucer section. "She's been in a battle alright." Ryan grimaces, leaning forward. "Lifesigns?"

    Alpha taps away at his console, "None. Sir, the temperature of the Mauritania has been altered from the standard for Starfleet Vessels."

    "Altered how, Lieutenant?" Carter stands from the First Officer Station and walks towards the Ops position.

    "The standard temperature for Federation vessels is 22-degrees celsius. The Mauritania's internal temperature is 38-degrees celsius."

    A chill runs down Ryan's spine. "Alpha, run the lifeforms scan again on my mark. Helm... back us off. Open a channel." There's a double-toned chirp from the comm system as the frequency opens. "This is Commander Ryan Allington of the Federation Starship Victorious. Please respond."

    Silence fills the Bridge.

    "Alpha, run that scan."

    "Aye, sir." After a few moments, he reports, "No lifesigns."

    "God, tell me I'm wrong. Commander, the Bridge is yours. Alpha, Tala, you're with me." Ryan moves towards the turbolift as Alpha stands from the Ops position and Tala leaves her position at tactical.

    Carter quickly turns to Ryan, "Captain, starfleet regulations--"

    Ryan cuts him off, "Carter, when have you ever known a Starfleet Captain to actually obey that regulation?"

    "Point taken."

    "Lieutenant Dannover and Doctor Varenn, report to Transporter Room 3."

    "Captain, we have no idea what's over there."

    "I know." As the trio reach the turbolift, he turns back to face him. "If you don't hear back from us every 6 hours, your orders are to destroy that ship and take the Victorious out of this area. No exceptions. Deck 8."


    "General, the Federation Vessel has come to a full stop alongside the derelict." The Kahless' Science Officer reports across the Bridge. Torpal nods in acknowledgement.

    "Very well. Drop to impulse. Maintain cloak."

    "They are lowering shields!"

    The Kahless' gunner quickly turns from his station. "Permission to attack, General?"

    "No." Torpal slowly turns to face him. "I want to see what they're after."

    "But they are defenceless!"

    "And until our shields fully engage, so are we."

    The science officer turns back to his station. "They have beamed a small away team to the derelict."

    "Have Lieutenant S'ian, Commander Talash and a security team report to Transporter Bay 1. I will join them momentarily. Helm, take us into that cloud of sirillium gas."

    "Sir?" The helmsman turns in his seat. "If we or the Federation ship fire... we will be destroyed."

    "The Federation will not initiate combat, as so long as we remain in the nebula, neither can we. It will also shield us from sensors while the boarding party beams to the Cruiser. If you do not receive a report from us, destroy the Victorious and seize the derelict as a prize."

    "Yes, General."

    Torpal stands and proceeds to walk off the Bridge to the turbolift. "Deck 4."


    Lieutenant Elizabeth Dannover walks into Transporter Room 3 carrying a toolkit before moving over to the transporter chief. "Anything new?"

    The Bolian transporter officer shakes his head. "Still no life readings."

    "What about the room temperature?"

    "Still 38-degrees."

    Dannover seems to drift off for a moment, putting two fingers to her temple. In her head, a harsh whispering slowly encroaches on her thoughts, getting louder and louder. Then the clicking. The loud intrusive clicking. She can hear her name, constantly being repeated.

    "Elizabeth? Chief!"

    She snaps back to reality as the transporter officer is snapping his fingers in front of her face. "You okay? You were out of it for a second."

    "Yeah, I'm..." She trails off. "I'm fine. Just a headache."

    The Transporter Chief looks at her for a moment. "You're sure?"

    "Yeah." She nods. "I'm sure."

    Just then, the ship's Trill Chief Medical Officer, Doctor Varenn, walks in with Ryan, Tala and Alpha. As the away team proceed to the pad, the Transporter Chief double-checks his equipment. "I have the beam-in coordinates, Captain. You're going to beam into the Observation Lounge directly behind the Main Bridge."

    "Good work, Chief. Any new life signs?" Ryan takes his hand phaser from its holster and briefly fiddles with the settings, which Dannover takes note of.

    "Negative. Everything seems quiet. It's a ghost ship."

    "Chief, don't even joke about that. I still have nightmares about that mission on Drozana Station."

    "Sorry sir. Ready when you are."

    "Set phasers on stun." Once the away team have finished adjusting the settings on their phasers, he nods to the transporter chief. "Energise."



    In a red haze, Torpal feels his molecules being taken apart at the sub-atomic level by the transporter system, before he begins to see the dark interior of a Federation Starship Bridge enter his vision. After a few seconds, he and his team fully re-materialise on the Bridge of the Mauritania. They take a moment to inspect their surroundings. There is no trace of the crew, only scorch marks and blown out consoles. Torpal takes note of the temperature; approximately 10-degrees warmer than Qo'nos. The only Federation race which comes to mind who would feel at home in this heat are the Vulcans. The team spreads out, inspecting what consoles are still active. Corani waves Torpal over. "General, look at this." The console's LCARS layout is distorted, with symbols missing, corrupted, or using completely nonsensical colours, by Federation standards, such as a sickly green. "Whatever happened, it's corrupted the ship's computers."

    Torpal lets out a low hum in agreement before remembering that there are Federation personnel also aboard. "Everyone, Ready Room. Quickly." He takes out his tricorder as he picks up life signs in the Observation Lounge. Once the rest of he crewmen are in the Ready Room, he joins them.

    Then, moments later, Ryan's Away Team step across the threshold of the Observation lounge door and onto the Bridge. "Alpha, see if you can access the ship's logs. Dannover, try and get Main Power back online."

    As his team members fulfill his orders, Ryan takes a look around the Bridge. Tala scans the area with her tricorder, sighing in frustration. "Captain, my tricorder's malfunctioning."

    Ryan quickly takes out his tricorder and checks that. The screen is consumed by static and false data. "Mine too. Alpha?"

    "Confirmed." Alpha is holding his tricorder in his attempt to extract the logs.

    Dannover looks over from the Engineering Station. "The ship's computers have been corrupted. I can't access the controls without a tricorder."

    "Ideas?" Ryan walks over.

    Dannover sighs, leaning against the wall and rubbing her temple. "Dampening field would have knocked out our phasers too, but we checked those in the Lounge. It's not an isolated malfunction, since it's affecting all of our tricorders..."

    "Liz..." Ryan puts a hand on her shoulder. "Are you okay?"

    "Yeah, headache, that's all."

    "Your interlink node again?"

    "Yeah... but it's louder this time... I didn't get a chance to take Doctor Varenn's medication before we left."

    "Alright. If it gets any worse, beam back to the ship. That's an order."

    "I'll be alright, Captain."


    Meanwhile, in the Ready Room, Torpal's team are inspecting the Captain's personal effects.

    "Can you access the logs yet?" Torpal is looking over Corani's shoulder impatiently.

    "I need the encryption protocol. The DeWitt's codes aren't working anymore."

    "How long?"

    "I'm a security officer, not a hacker. Why don't we ask them?" She knocks her head to the side, gesturing towards the door to the Bridge.

    "Not yet. When we have the element of surprise."

    "I have infiltration training. While you try to reach the main computer, I can follow them and try to capture one of them."

    Torpal grins slightly. "Maybe later." He looks down at his tricorder. "They're moving to the turbolift. Come."


    As the turbolift comes to a halt on Deck 8, Ryan taps his combadge. "Allington to Victorious." After a few moments without a response, the away team look at each other. "Victorious, respond."

    Dannover tries hers with similar results. "Whatever's jamming the tricorder signal must also be messing with our combadges."

    "Fantastic." Ryan takes out his phaser as the away team step out into the corridor. "We need to find a way of signalling the Victorious. If they don't hear from us..."

    "Boom." Tala makes an exploding motion with her hands. "Boom, boom, boom! BOOM!"

    "Thank you, lieutenant, I feel so much better now!" Ryan remarks, sarcasm dripping from his facial expression.

    After stifling a laugh, Dannover offers an option, "If I can reach deflector control, I can use the dish to send a high-beam transmission to the ship. I'd only need a few minutes."

    Ryan looks at her, "I'm not okay with you going alone."

    "Captain, there is no one here! Who am I going to be threatened by? The Flying Dutchman?!"

    Alpha tilts his head to the side in curiosity. "Intriguing."

    Ryan ignores Alpha, "Catwalks. If you fall..."

    "Okay, now you're just being a mother hen."

    "On the contrary, Lieutenant," Alpha speaks up louder this time, "Starfleet Regulation require that you have one other person with you when performing work of this nature."

    Ryan gestures to Alpha, "See? Alpha agrees with me. You wouldn't want to argue with Alpha, would you?"

    Dannover gives Ryan a light glare, like a little sister losing an argument to her brother. "Fine."

    "Tala, go with her. Doctor Varenn, Alpha and I will try to get to the Main Computer. If we can at least access ship functions, we can keep in touch using the intercom."

    "Understood." Tala nods to Dannover. "Lead the way, Chief."

    As the two make a move towards the next turbolift, Ryan, Varenn and Alpha walk towards the crew lounge. Varenn looks at Ryan, "Am I the only one here who sees a problem with us splitting up?"

    Ryan smiles at her. "Doctor, what is going to threaten us? There is no one here."

    As they walk into the crew lounge, the Turbolift opens again as Torpal's team walk out. Torpal checks his tricorder again. "Two of them are heading towards the next turbolift." Corani looks at him. "Be careful. Qapla'!" Corani starts following Tala and Dannover towards the turbolift on the outer edge of the deck while Torpal and the others open an access point to the Jefferies' Tube. "Set disruptors to level 1."


    Intruders detected. Interrupting Regeneration Cycle. 8 unassimilated units confirmed. 1 Species 5618, 1 Species 5624, 2 Species 5711, 1 Species 6127, 1 Species 6164, 1 Species 18215.

    New information: 1 Borg Drone detected, Species 5618. Drone is not connected to the Collective. Activating Drone 6162849-Alpha. Objective: Retrieve disconnected Drone, Unit Number 5258747-Beta. Secondary Objective: Assimilation.

    We are the Borg. Resistance is Futile.
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    Enjoying so far!
    Fate - protects fools, small children, and ships named Enterprise Will Riker

    Member Access Denied Armada!

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  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited January 2015
    Chapter Four: Confrontation.

    Ship's Log: Supplemental. First Officer Michael Carter recording.

    It's now been 20 minutes since Captain Allington and the Away Team beamed over to the Mauritania, and we've still had no response. Worse, our sensors have recorded a Klingon Away Team beaming over to the ship. I have ordered the Transporter Room to maintain a lock on the Away Team and we are scanning for indications of a Klingon vessel, but something tells me we may already be too late.

    End of Log.

    "Commander, I'm picking up a new contact on the Mauritania." The replacement Ops Officer turns to Carter, who is watching the viewscreen intently. "It's Borg!"

    Carter snaps into action, heading towards the command chair. "Transporter Room, beam the away team back! Now!"

    "Sir, the Mauritania just raised shields!"

    Carter sits in the Command Chair, watching as the Mauritania continues to drift. "Not so wounded as we were led to believe... Dammit."


    Dannover and Tala walk into the Mauritania's Main Deflector Control Centre, looking in awe at the massive conical structure and energy conduits, surrounded by catwalks. Dannover quickly spurs into action, heading towards a ladder leading towards the centre of the deflector, where it meets the energy conduits and transmission hub. "Wait here."

    Tala tilts her head slightly. "Hold it. Captain's Orders; we stay together."

    "I need the space. Besides, you can watch me from up here."

    "That's not the point."

    "Tala, there is nothing, I repeat, nothing, here. Nada, zip, zilch. And even if something does try to get me, you'll have the high ground to phaser its TRIBBLE off." Dannover presses a control, opening the hatch below the ladder as she starts climbing down.

    "Fine. Don't come crying to me when a wild Saur comes and slobbers all over you." She smirks at Dannover, who gives her a miffed glare.

    "You promised you wouldn't mention that."

    At the doorway, Corani watches the pair, waiting for Dannover to reach the bottom of the ladder before sneaking inside, closing the door and crouching behind a console.

    At the same time, Dannover reaches the access panel for the Deflector Hub. As she pulls the cover off of the system network, she furrows her brows in confusion. "What the hell did they do to this ship?" The readouts show that the deflector has been modified to function as a multiplexing beacon. After a few moments of trying to modify the system to call the Victorious, realisation dawns on her. "Oh God." Suddenly, she hears a yelp from the catwalk above. "Tala?" She pulls her phaser and looks up. "What the--?"

    Corani has Tala in a necklock from behind, trying to choke her out before Tala fires an elbow into her side, breaking free and throwing a right hook as she turns to face her attacker, who ducks and quickly moves back.

    Dannover takes aim with her phaser and tries to stun Corani, letting out a grunt in frustration as the phaser lets out only a low whine. "You have got to be kidding me!"

    On the catwalk, both Corani and Tala have pulled out their weapons, both blinking in confusion when they fail to fire. Corani drops her disruptor on the floor, watching Tala carefully.

    Dannover makes a few tweaks to her phaser. Now she knows what's happening with the ship, she can finally figure out how to get their equipment working again. "Okay, fellas, you wanna try adapting to this?" She manages to get a high-pitched hum as the phaser's prefire chamber restarts. "Yes!" She looks up, seeing that the two have spaced out so Tala is blocking Dannover's line of sight. "Tala, bypass the modulation circuit and divert your phaser's energy directly to the prefire chamber! It'll trick the dampening field!"

    Before Tala can react, Corani lunges forward, grabbing Tala's wrist and slamming it into the railing, causing Tala to let out a cry of pain as the phaser tumbles down and onto a catwalk just below Dannover. Dannover takes aim again before hearing the sound of metal hitting metal behind her. She quickly turns and fires, a Borg Drone collapsing into the deck. Meanwhile, Corani tries to spin around and slam her elbow into Tala's face, as Tala quickly shifts her head to the side and locks her right arm around Corani's elbow, before Corani lunges forward, throwing Tala over her back and onto the deck. The two slowly get to their feet, Corani drawing her dk'tagh and taking a swipe at Tala, with Tala catching her wrist and twisting it, causing the knife to fall onto the catwalk before Tala kicks it over the edge, receiving a haymaker from Corani in return as the space out, getting into fighting stances.

    Meanwhile, Ryan, Alpha and Varenn walk into the Main Computer Room, quickly drawing their phasers as they find Torpal's team waiting for them. Torpal gestures to his team's diruptors lined along the floor. "No need, Starfleet. As you can see, they're useless."

    Ryan looks at Alpha, who does a brief check on his phaser. "Confirmed, sir. The dampening field has deactivated our weapons."

    Ryan now looks at Torpal directly, "I am Commander Ryan Allington of the Federation Starship Victorious. State your intentions."

    "Lieutenant General Torpal of the Imperial Klingon Ship Kahless. My crew are here for the same reason you are, Commander."

    Ryan raises an eyebrow in suspicion, "Somehow, I doubt that."

    "We want to know why this vessel has been abandoned. Since you are here, I gather you have also been unable to access the ship's databanks?"

    "Our tricorders aren't functioning."

    "Our tricorders are. However, without the encryption key..."

    Ryan folds his arms. "You want me to give you secure Federation encryption keys? Tell me, General, are you familiar with the human saying 'go climb a tree'?"

    "What if we were to allow you to access the data using our tricorders? All I ask in return is that you share your findings. And destroy this ship."

    Now Ryan is curious, "Destroy this ship? What for?"

    "For the past 2 weeks, my Empire has been taking heavy losses to a Borg invasion force. The profile of several cases where we have found our vessels adrift, taken by the Borg, match this one. Minimal damage, no signs of life, all of it. We couldn't confirm this aboard our vessel, as we could not conduct scans with our cloak up. However, it's clear to us that this vessel matches the conditions seen in the vessels seized by the Borg in our space."

    Ryan mulls over this for a moment. It explains a lot - the sudden Klingon desperation to expand, the condition of the Mauritania and the strange communication intercepts from the far side of the Klingon Empire. Suddenly, his thoughts are broken as the doors all around the computer core open and Borg Drones flood in.

    "We are the Borg."


    "Assimilation is inevitable. Resistance is futile."

    "Assimilate this!" Dannover jams her flux coupler into one of the Deflector Dish's power conduits, ducking as sparks fly before the conduit overloads and a mass arc of electricity strikes the drone chasing her. She remodulates her phaser for the 3rd time in 2 minutes. "Tala, time to go!"

    On the catwalk above, Tala strikes Corani with a roundhouse kick, knocking her into the railing before Corani tackles her into the opposite railing, barring an arm across her collar and pushing her back over the railing. "Little busy here!" She lands a hook into Corani's cheekbone, leaving a small cut before grabbing her by the collar and throwing her against the railing again, panting lightly as they both suddenly see a Borg Drone walk onto the catwalk through the door.

    "Now!" Dannover ducks beneath a swipe from a drone, rolling under a safety barrier and falling onto one of the support arms for the deflector, rolling down the sloped pylon before managing to grab hold of a mag-lock handle. She manages to get sight of the defence shield generator from this angle, taking her phaser and trying to get her aim straight. She feels a burst of warm air as a Borg plasma blast hits the pylon right next to her. "Come on..." She increases the setting to maximum, firing. The orange energy blast flies straight into the generator's plasma conduit, causing a ship-shaking blast as any drones next to the generator are sent flying off their catwalks. She then sets the phaser to overload and tosses it back up to the transmission hub. "Merry Christmas."


    In the Computer Core, the Federation and Klingon teams feel the ship rock for the second time in a minute. Suddenly, the communicators chirp as the dampening field fails. Ryan quickly taps his combadge. "Allington to Victorious, if you can get a lock on anything not Borg, beam us back, now!"


    Carter almost jumps out of his seat at the command suddenly coming over the bridge speakers and relays the beam-out command with a heightened sense of urgency, "Bridge to Transporter Room, lock on to any non-Borg lifesigns and energise! Security to Transporter Room 3!"


    OOC: And that's Chapter 4! Chapter 5 may be up tomorrow, but it might be up later.

    If you have any questions or suggestions, please type it up down below as usual. ;)
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    Chapter Five: In Enemies, find Allies.

    As the blue haze of the transporters dissipate, Ryan steps off the transporter pad quickly and walks over to the Transporter Chief. "Tala and Dannover are still over there!"

    "I'm locking onto them now. Energising." The Transporter Chief runs his fingers up the console as the transporter cycle starts. Within a matter of seconds, Tala and Corani are on the pad.

    "What about Dannover?"

    The chief taps his controls. "She's in close proximity to what's left of the deflector. There's a large field of tetryon particles around her. I need a minute."

    "We don't have a minute!" Tala shouts as she steps off the pad. "She was surrounded by Borg!"

    "I'm doing the best I can, sir." He keeps tapping his controls.

    Alpha steps forward to offer advice, "If you divert power to the transporter scanners and enhance the pattern buffer, it should be possible to safely beam Lieutenant Dannover aboard."

    The Chief nods, following Alpha's advice with a few sweeps of the hands across the control panel before restarting the transporter cycle as Talash pulls Corani off the pad. In a blue haze of light, Dannover materialises in the centre of the transporter pad, falling from the slanted angle she was at on the support beam into a flattened heap on the floor. Varenn quickly moves over and crouches beside her, taking out her medical tricorder. Ryan looks over with concern. "Doctor?"

    "She's alright," Varenn looks up after a few moments of scanning, "She's exhausted and there are a few minor burns, bruises and scrapes, but she'll make a full recovery in a day or so."

    Ryan nods to her. "Get her to sickbay." As the attending security personnel help Dannover to her feet and support her as they walk out the door, Ryan taps his combadge. "Allington to Bridge. Destroy that ship!"

    On the Bridge, Carter looks out at the viewscreen as the ship starts moving at speed away from the Victorious. "Tactical, target her engines!"

    "She's accelerating too fast for an Excelsior-Class starship!" The relief Ops Officertaps at his console frantically before the Mauritania suddenly fires a series of photon torpedoes from her aft torpedo tubes, triggering a series of alarms on the Bridge.

    Carter quickly calls out, "All hands, brace for impact!" The bridge shakes as the torpedoes impact harmlessly against the Victorious' forward shields, but as the static from the EM interference clears, the Excelsior-Class they had been chasing disappears from sight. "Bridge to Captain Allington. The Mauritania escaped, sir."

    Several hours later, the senior staff and Klingon Away Team are all present in the Deck 1 Observation Lounge, security officers watching their Klingon guests with phaser rifles on heavy stun. Alpha is giving a presentation of the Mauritania's warp engines during the pursuit. "The Mauritania's transwarp drive has been reactivated and bought inline with the capabilities typical to most Borg vessels. She is now faster than any known vessel in the Federation or Klingon Empire."

    "And that's how she was able to escape so easily?" Ryan has his arms folded, watching Alpha's presentation with considerable anxiety.

    "Indeed. The antimatter detonations from the torpedo attack disrupted our sensors for approximately 5.68 seconds - sufficient time for the Borg to open a transwarp conduit and escape."

    "But without a multiplexing beacon, how can they re-establish contact with the Collective?"

    Torpal growls under his breath before speaking up, "For the past several weeks, the Klingon Empire has been attempting to repel a Borg offensive on the far side of our space. The success of the campaign has been... lacking."

    "In other words, you're getting your asses handed to you on a silver plate." Tala folds her arms from across the table, looking directly at Torpal.

    Torpal lets out a muffled chuckle, before nodding, resigned. "Some of our Generals predict that unless we achieve a strategic victory or effect a tactical advantage within a month, the Empire will collapse."

    Ryan raises an eyebrow at Torpal's tone, "Yourself included?"

    "Yes." Torpal leans back in his seat. "As you've probably already guessed, Captain, our offensive in the Archanis Sector is motivated for strategic purposes. The Chancellor believes that if he can gain control of the Laurentian System, the supplies from that system will be sufficient to keep our forces battle-ready against the Borg."

    "You disagree."

    "The Chancellor has underestimated the losses we will take in such a campaign and how quickly Starfleet will be able to mount a counterattack. This offensive is draining our resources to the point where we cannot hope to defeat the Borg alone!"

    Carter looks at Ryan. "The Federation would be willing to render aid to the Klingon--"

    "The Chancellor dismissed the suggestion when it was raised by the House of Martok, despite several generals supporting the plan. Now the odds of him accepting such an offer when Klingon blood has been spilled in his gamble for Regulus are almost extinct."

    "Then we won't give him a choice." Ryan looks up from his seat to bewildered looks from everyone in the room. "Starfleet Officers have the right to negotiate ceasefires with Klingon Military officials at any time. General, can I assume you are in overall command of the offensive?"

    "Yes, our best leaders are fighting the Borg invasion."

    "Good enough for me. In return for your forces pulling back to the armistice lines, the Federation will render military assistance in your fight against the Borg."

    After a moment, Ryan smiles at Torpal. "My people have a saying General. 'The enemy of my enemy is my ally'."

    Torpal grins at him across the table, before standing up and walking over to Ryan, who also stands. "I believe it is customary among your kind to seal an agreement with the shaking of hands." Torpal extends his arm, hand open. Ryan clasps his hand in return and they shake. "You seem an honourable man, Commander. For a human."

    "Coming from you, General, that's a real complement."
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    Shame they lost the ship, but a daring escape, and a good attempt.

    Interested to see where this goes.
    Fate - protects fools, small children, and ships named Enterprise Will Riker

    Member Access Denied Armada!

    My forum single-issue of rage: Make the Proton Experimental Weapon go for subsystem targetting!
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    Chapter Six: Any Means Necessary...

    "Commander, I must say I'm impressed. You've not only managed to reinstitute the Regulus Armistice, but you've single-handedly succeeded in pulling Starfleet into a war on the Klingons' side, infuriating not just Admiral Quinn, but also Admirals Gardner and T'Dath!" Admiral William Ross, CnC Starfleet Command, is on the viewscreen in Ryan's Ready Room, looking a mixture of flustered and amused. "Give me one good reason why I shouldn't call you back to Earth and have you before a formal inquiry?"

    "I didn't do it singlehandedly, sir. I shook General Torpal's hand."

    "That's not very damn funny, Commander."

    "No sir. Starfleet Regulations state that the ability of Starfleet Officers to negotiate stretch to 'any means deemed necessary to ensure the protection of the strategic interests of United Earth and by extension the United Federation of Planets'. I'd say a Borg invasion of the Klingon Empire qualifies as a threat to our strategic interests, wouldn't you?"

    "Close enough. You realise how many of the Joint Chiefs would rather we let the Klingons get wiped out? I have to say, Commander, the utter fury you've aroused in many of them has made my day. And the President is on your side on this one, so we're going ahead. A Battlegroup of Federation Starships is already assembling now Memory Alpha to transwarp directly to the Forcas System and aid the Klingons there with the escort of three of General Torpal's warships. In the meantime, your orders are to chase down the Mauritania. I'm afraid security concerns mean I can't explain in detail, but the Mauritania is carrying several advanced pieces of equipment which we cannot allow to fall into Borg hands. Your orders are to destroy it by any means necessary."

    "Admiral, with respect, if I'm going to be putting my crew at risk, I'd at least like to know what we're dealing with here."

    "All I know is that the equipment aboard the Mauritania is highly sensitive. Everything else is classified even above my pay grade."

    "We get paid?"

    Ross lets a small grin form on his face. "The Mauritania has been sighted by the MIDAS Array in Sector 1310. I've transmitted the navigational data to your helmsman. Destroy that ship, Captain. Any means necessary. Starfleet out." With that, Ross' face is replaced by the emblem of the United Federation of Planets flanked by the Starfleet Command heraldry on the left.

    Ryan sighs as he walks back over to his desk, slowly falling into the seat and being confronted by a small stack of PADDs, containing the various duty rosters, transfer requests, requisitions forms and drill scores. He picks them up and starts reading through them.


    Meanwhile, in Sickbay, Dannover is being given a medical examination by Doctor Varenn, the Trill moving the medical scanner around the Chief Engineer's head. "Any unusual sensations? Dizziness, difficulty breathing...?"

    Dannover shakes her head, before the Doctor goes back to her tricorder readings. The Trill starts to talk about something to do with hormones, but her voice is drowned out amongst hundreds of whispers, slowly getting louder and louder, until Dannover thinks she can make out a familiar, maternal voice amongst the chorus.

    "Dannover...? Dannover?" Her concentration is broken by the sound of clicking, as her focus returns to reality, seeing Varenn snapping her fingers in front of her, a look of concern on the Trill's face. "You zoned out for a minute."

    "Sorry... I just..." Dannover trails off, thinking about what she heard.

    "Is your interlink implant causing trouble again?" Varenn begins scanning the area of Dannover's cranium where the implant is buried, beneath flesh and bone.

    "I... I'm not sure..." After a few moments, she shakes her head. "I mean, yes. Yes, it is."

    "It's alright. I imagine it can get pretty confusing, getting bombarded with trillions of thoughts all at once." Varenn walks over to a trolley, picking up a hypospray and vial, pushing the vial into the base of the injector.

    "Actually, it was never that... many..." Dannover's face suddenly lights up in realisation, as she stands up.

    "Where do you think you're--?"

    "I'm an idiot!" Dannover starts to hurry out the door, looking back to Varenn briefly. "I've got to talk to the Captain!"

    Varenn shakes her head as the doors close, folding her arms. "Senior Officers; go through 4 years of Academy Training, intense Psych evaluations, battle drills, the Kobayashi Maru..." A nurse comes over, looking confused as Varenn turns to him and puts the hypo in his hand. "And they still run scared whenever a Doctor picks up a needle."


    On Deck 14, near the Guest Quarters, Tala is walking down a corridor when she sees a Caitian Security Officer escorting Corani in the opposite direction. She holds out her hand and the Officer comes to a stop. "What's going on here?"

    "Sir, she requested to speak with General Torpal." The Felinoid's purring tones fail to be hidden by the Universal Translator, but the speech itself comes through mostly in the clear.

    "I gave clear instructions that she was to be escorted by a Vulcan or Denobulan crewman, or a female crewmember, with no exceptions." Tala glances at Corani briefly before focusing back on the Security Officer.

    "The message hasn't arrived."

    Tala facepalms, before sighing, "I'll deal with this later. All right, Ensign. I'll escort her. Return to your duties." As the Caitian nods and leaves, Tala pulls out her tricorder, doing a quick scan. "Just checking."

    "For what?" Corani tilts her head, curious of the Andorian's antics.

    "Pheromones." Tala closes the tricorder, apparently satisfied with the results.

    Corani smiles at her bemusedly, holding up her wrist and showing a metal bracelet. "Do you really think General Torpal would have Orions on his ship without taking precautions to make sure we couldn't smitten the crew into mutiny?"

    "Just keep it on while you're on this ship. I don't take kindly to my people being played." Tala leads her down the corridor.

    "Lieutenant, did anyone ever tell you you'd make a good Klingon?"

    Tala smiles at her lightly, "Actually, yes. Several people in fact." Corani smiles back as they reach Torpal's Quarters. As she walks in, Tala takes her by the arm, "When you want to leave, contact me on the security panel and I'll arrange the escort."

    "Worried I'll try something?"

    "No, but I've had enough bruises for one day."

    The two give each other a respectful look before Tala allows Corani to pass through the door.


    A few hours later, the Senior Staff (now minus the Klingon Officers) meets again in the Observation Lounge, with all attention on Dannover. "At first, I thought it was just background pickup - a tiny Borg signal somewhere just happening to come through in the clear. I didn't realise that the Mauritania had been captured."

    "The Borg enter a closed cycle during regeneration, Lieutenant." Alpha leans forward from his seat, as if attempting to emulate a consolatory posture. "It is doubtful you would have been able to make the distinction."

    "In sickbay, I heard them again, but this time the signal was much clearer and much stronger."

    "What does that mean?" Carter is paying close attention from his place at the corner of the table, flanking Ryan.

    "I think they were trying to get back in contact with the Collective."

    Ryan nods in understanding, leaning forward slightly, "And since your interlink node was open..."

    "I was the one they tried to reach." Dannover looks at all of them, before focusing on Ryan. "I think they're still trying to connect, and without the multiplexing beacon, I'm their only option. We can use that."

    "How? I thought all Borg were programmed to try to return to the Hive Mind?"

    "They are, but these Borg must have been disconnected immediately after assimilation, because they are mistaking me for an active Drone connected to the Collective. I think I know why.

    "Before the 2360s, the Borg were a Collective consciousness. Each Drone's thoughts made up part of the whole, and every decision had to be made with the Collective in consensus. When the Federation attempted to reintroduce the drone called Hugh into the Collective, his individuality broke the carefully ordered balance in the Collective between order and individual thought processes. Some Borg ships became indecisive, others broke down into anarchy entirely. The Collective was falling apart, so the Borg decided to introduce a stabilising element; a Central Processing Unit, you could call it."

    "The Queen."

    "Suddenly, a single drone is dominating the Collective, filtering out all 'chaotic' thought processes. Without the Queen, the Borg revert back to the original Collective consciousness. While they're in that state, they will only take action which benefits the Collective as a whole."

    "Can they be reasoned with in that state?"

    "Possibly. It depends on the general mood of the Collective at the time. Some Collectives will be open to conversation, others will be like the one we saw at Wolf 359. Hugh's influence on the Collective has never failed though. I can use that."


    "When a Borg Queen dies, a program in the Collective immediately selects a new one and designates 5,000 potential choices for a successor. That way, the Collective is only in existence for a short amount of time before the new Queen is complete. The Borg on the Mauritania have the same programming. If I can convince them that I'm the Borg Queen--"

    "Hold on a second!" Tala leans forward, cutting Dannover off. "You just said that there were 5,000 successor drones to each Queen."

    "Yes. I was one of them."

    "And you're mentioning this now, because...?"

    "Tala, you're probably terrified of Andorian Cave Ice Arachnoids, correct?"

    "How did you--? I mean... maybe..." The Andorian clears her throat as her cheeks turn a slightly brighter shade of blue.

    "And you're only mentioning this now, because...?"

    "Alright, I get your point."

    "If I can make them think I'm the Queen, I can remove the Queen-Maker programme from them and leave the fractured code from Hugh behind. Then, I can disconnect and point them at the nearest Borg Unimatrix."

    Ryan looks skeptical, "What would that do?"

    "In the short-term, it would cause chaos in the Collective as the two differing programmes fight for dominance. In the long-term, if the Mauritania's crew wins, the Borg will be a much easier threat to deal with."

    "But this plan relies on us allowing them to reach the Borg Unicomplex?"

    "Yes, sir."

    Ryan exhales as he runs the plan through his head. "No. Starfleet's orders are clear on this. The Mauritania is to be destroyed."

    "But, sir--"

    "This isn't open to debate."

    Alpha speaks up, "Sir, if we destroy the Mauritania, it would have far less strategic impact than Lieutenant Dannover's plan."

    "And what if she's wrong, Alpha?" Tala looks to Ryan. "If the Borg get the technology on the Mauritania, whatever it is, the Borg will have negated any advantage we could have had."

    "Not to mention we're not sure what effect that kind of experience will have on you physically or mentally, Elizabeth." Varenn looks at Dannover compassionately.

    "I believe Lieutenant Dannover would not have volunteered herself for this plan if she were not aware of the risks, Doctor." Alpha steps in again.

    "Enough." Ryan stands from his seat, looking at all of them. "It's my decision - and it is made. Dismissed."
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    I'm sure a Queen-candidate won't come up again in their Borg pursuit. :) I liked the medbay scene a lot.
    Fate - protects fools, small children, and ships named Enterprise Will Riker

    Member Access Denied Armada!

    My forum single-issue of rage: Make the Proton Experimental Weapon go for subsystem targetting!
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    I'm sure a Queen-candidate won't come up again in their Borg pursuit. :) I liked the medbay scene a lot.

    Thanks. I'm thinking after I finish this story, I'll give each character their own short story to add to development (except Ryan and Dannover, because I've already done those two separately. I can find those posts if you like?). So, what is your favourite part of the story so far? Any favourite characters?
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    Chapter Seven: The Old Alliance.

    In the Archanis System, a fleet of Klingon warbirds suddenly decloak, located just a few kilometres from the Federation Fleet which had been assigned to defend the system for the past two weeks. After a few minutes of communications exchanges between the two fleets, the Klingons are escorted towards Memory Alpha.

    Meanwhile, the U.S.S. Victorious thunders towards Sector 1310, in deep space around the edge of the Klingon Empire, slipping through Klingon Space at maximum warp. In his Ready Room, Ryan is examining reports and every schematic of the Mauritania he can get his hands on, pouring over them for any hint of what is so important aboard it that Starfleet had classified it above even Admiral Ross' authorisation. After half an hour of searching, he lets out a grunt of frustration as he hits yet another classified file. "Computer, Authorisation Allington Alpha-Delta-Four-Seven-Lima!"

    "Unable to comply. Access Denied." The technological tone of the ship's computer prompts Ryan to drop his head to the desk, sighing in severe exasperation.

    "Computer... music. Something by Barry Grey." Suddenly, a chorus of drumbeats and synthesiser sound comes over the speakers. "No, no! Computer... play 'The Tracy Lounge Piano'." The music cuts out before being replaced by a steady, upbeat melody of piano chords, as Ryan slowly lifts his head up, relaxing in the music. After a few moments, he exhales calmly and opens his eyes, looking at the flashing 'Access Denied' message on his screen. "Computer, explain denial of access."

    "The file you are attempting to access has been classified."

    "I gathered that. By who?"

    "File has been classified by order of Starfleet Intelligence."

    "Starfleet Intelligence?" Ryan stands up, pacing around the room. "Computer, pause music." With a beep from the computer, the piano melody is silenced. "Computer, what is the maximum security clearance of any member of Starfleet Intelligence?"


    "And Admiral Ross has Omega-4 Clearance."

    "That is correct."

    "So how can Starfleet Intelligence classify a file beyond Admiral Ross' clearance level?" After a few moments of silence, Ryan continues. "Computer, identify security clearance lock on file."

    "Unable to comply. No clearance lock is detected."

    "What?!" Ryan looks at the screen. "Computer, how can a file be classified without a clearance lock given?"

    "Unable to comply."


    "That information is not available."

    "Not available...? Computer, analyse all classified files pertaining to the U.S.S. Mauritania. How many have a clearance lock?"

    "Unable to comply. You do not have sufficient clearance for that information."

    Ryan sighs again, groaning in frustration. "Computer, this is starting to get annoying..."

    "Unable to comply. Please restate request."

    Ryan smiles a little, before letting out a resigned sigh as he sits back down. "Computer, resume music."


    In the Forcas System, a small battle group of Klingon Warbirds prepare to defend the system's 3rd planet from the incoming Borg attack, with the green distortions of transwarp conduits only 50km from the valiant, most certainly doomed, defence force. Then, suddenly, a fleet of Klingon warships decloak around them, bearing the symbol of the House of Megh'bar on their wings.

    On the lead ship of the defence squadron, Captain K'chas looks in shock as the colossal fleet of cruisers, raptors and battleships take positions ahead of them. "Those are General Torpal's ships! He is supposed to be attacking the Regulus System!"

    Then, the face of another Klingon captain appears on the ship's viewscreen. "This is Captain Korak of the I.K.S. Rotarran! By command of Major General Torpal, I order you to engage the enemy!"

    K'chas looks at the younger Klingon, wanting to laugh at his comrade's apparent lack of sense, "There are eighteen Borg Cubes out there! Do you truly believe we have the numbers to defend against that!"

    "If our plan works, then you shall be at the vanguard of the turning point in this battle! If it fails, then you and your crew shall be honoured in Sto'vo'kor! What is certain is that if you do not follow General Torpal's orders, then the Klingon Empire shall fall! Make your choice quickly, Captain!"

    K'chas growls under his breath, "Mak'cha!"

    Within minutes, both fleets clash in a titanic melee of metal, disruptor blasts, and plasma bursts as the Borg advance grinds to a temporary halt. Several Vor'cha-Class Attack Cruisers pulverise the Borg Spheres, at huge sacrifice to themselves before colliding into the Cubes themselves. After a quarter of an hour of this bloodshed, a series of blue distortions open up near the Borg's rear guard, before a flood of Federation Starships, escorted by the I.K.S. Kahless and a handful of other Megh'bar ships, storm out of the transwarp conduits and engage the enemy, with both Federation and Klingon Fleets coordinating in battle for the first time since the Dominion War. For this one battle, both fleets fight with the unified fury reminiscent of the Old Alliance, before the Klingon-Gorn War.


    Author Notes: Getting close to the end now! Please leave your feedback and thoughts down below! :D
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    Besides the ones you listed, I've liked Torpal. Interesting blend of aggression and pragmatism.

    Still interested in this particular Excelsior's mystery.
    Fate - protects fools, small children, and ships named Enterprise Will Riker

    Member Access Denied Armada!

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  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    Chapter Eight: The Chase

    Captain's Log, Stardate: 87759.9. U.S.S. Victorious.

    We are travelling towards Sector 1310, between the borders of the Klingon Empire and the far reaches of the Federation. Already, we have been able to detect the Mauritania's warp signature and home in on its transponder. We are increasing warp power to intercept. All stations are at yellow alert.

    End of Log.

    "Time to intercept?" Ryan sits in his command chair, watching the viewscreen intently as the warp trail of the Mauritania is highlighted a light cyan shade.

    Alpha taps at his control console, turning after almost a second as he makes his calculations, "At our present course and speed, we will enter weapons range of the U.S.S. Mauritania in 5 hours, 27 minutes and 18 seconds."

    "Anything unusual?"

    "Not at this time, Captain." He begins to turn back to the console, before halting, twitching his head briefly. "There was a curious sculpture on display in the Crew Lounge. I believe it was created by Ensign O'Connor."

    Carter smiles lightly, looking at Ryan and quietly saying, "Here we go..."

    "He constructed it in a geometric style, from battle debris and exhausted metallic components. It did appear to resemble a Borg construct. Do you think Ensign O'Connor may be an... expert... Captain?"

    Ryan tries to hold back a laugh, "I'm sure Ensign O'Connor knows about as much about the Borg as the rest of us, Alpha - Lieutenant Dannover excluded." He leans back and looks at Carter, "Make a note for me to have a word with O'Conner regarding his artistic tastes."

    "Aye sir. Would you like me to bury it amongst the other notes on your desk you haven't gotten around to acting on yet?" Carter gives Ryan a wry smirk.

    "Ouch! That stung."


    In Engineering, Dannover is seated at one of the utility stations viewing schematics of the onboard cybernetics lab, viewing a PADD on the console every few seconds. Shortly after she switches to a schematic of the ship's communications cluster, Tala walks over to her. "What ya looking at?"

    Dannover looks up at her, before going back to the schematics. "I figured I'd check the practical theory of creating an interlink between Cybernetics and the Mauritania. Particularly whether I could isolate the computer systems in Cybernetics from the rest of the ship."

    Tala frowns at her, leaning on the console, "The Captain already said no to your plan."

    "He said no to implementing what I suggested in the meeting. He never said I couldn't keep improving the theory behind it." She smiles at Tala. "There's a difference."

    "A difference about as big as that between a reprimand and a formal court martial."

    "Tala, how many times have we used technicality to save our necks while staying within regulations?"

    "This isn't the same, Elizabeth. You're talking about turning yourself back into a Borg and giving the Borg an Excelsior-Class Starship!"

    "Firstly, I'm not turning myself back into a Borg, I'm establishing a dialogue with the Borg on that ship before they can contact the Collective. Secondly, strategically speaking, would you prefer to take out one ship or neutralise an entire fleet?"

    "That's not our call to make."

    "No, it's the Captain's. I'm just giving him options. Besides, if the Mauritania's ready for us..." She looks back at the screen, "This will give us a countermeasure."

    "Yeah, well..." Tala trails off, before sighing. "Need any help?"


    A few hours later, the two are in a Jefferies Tube just off the Main Communications Cluster, Tala clasping a ladder as she performs alterations to the network router. Dannover is standing at the bottom of the ladder with a PADD, monitoring her progress. "You want to reconnect the blue circuit with the data port on your right; T12." She hears a short whine as the lights flicker and die in the tube. "Your other right."

    "I'm looking on my right!" Tala removes the circuit plug and the lights come back on.

    "Let me see." Dannover looks up to see what circuit Tala grabbed. "I said blue, not white!"

    "I come from a planet where the landscape is frozen ice! Humans call it blue!"

    "Oh, for crying out..." Dannover steps back. "Climb down and let me do it!"

    "Oh no, you asked for my help, now deal with it."

    "Okay, firstly, I didn't ask - you offered. Secondly, we just spent the last 20 minutes trying to isolate the Cybernetics Lab from the rest of the communications network and you've managed to pull out three wrong circuits and short out the lighting systems!"

    "Look, just tell me where this goes!"

    Dannover sighs. "Left hand side, data port B4. It should be second row, fourth column."

    "Got it." There's a chime as the plug locks into place.

    "Other left." Tala looks down at her, with Dannover looking up, wearing a grin. "Only joking."


    "Blue circuit."

    Tala sighs, taking a look around, frowning before looking back. "Which one?"

    "There's more than one?"

    "What do you mean, 'there's more than one'? You're the engineer!"

    "There's only one in the Ambassador's technical manual and I still haven't gotten the updated version for the Victorious. Cut me some slack." She looks at the PADD. "Okay, can you read the port numbers?"

    "Sure." She looks back into the access point. "A7 to G12 and B8 to C4."

    "Okay, they've replaced the delta circuit with a new system. I'll check up on that with McKinley later." She makes a note in her PADD before looking up. "Remove the circuit plug in A7 and move it to Z4. It's directly above you."

    "Are you sure it isn't my other above?" Tala smirks back down as she takes out the circuit plug.

    "Yes, I'm sure." Dannover shakes her head as the system chimes. She crouches and pulls of the system access panel, tapping the now-revealed console a few times. "Okay, that should do it. Any loose circuits you can see?"

    "Other than your brain?" Tala starts climbing down, sealing the panel as she does so.

    "Cute. Alright, next job. I need a replicator, a chair and a window."

    "What for?"

    "Coffee break."

    Tala smiles. "Now you're talking Andorian."

    Suddenly, the boson chime rings out through the crawlspace. "All hands, this is the Bridge!" Ryan's voice rings out over the intercom. "We are now engaging the Mauritania. Red Alert!"

    The Red Alert klaxon starts sounding throughout the ship as the pair quickly make a move back towards the corridors and head to their respective departments.


    On the Bridge, Ryan is standing up as the Victorious approaches the Mauritania's aft quarter. "Alpha, how long until we can fire phasers?"

    "It will take approximately 10 minutes for the two ships to get close enough that the warp fields will be in contact to an extent that our phasers will be able to fire."

    "Not to mention the small detail that we'll start bleeding warp power as soon as we fire." Carter stands next to Ryan, looking intensely focused on the viewscreen.

    "Point taken." Ryan turns and sits down in his seat. "Tactical, stand by photon torpedoes. Dispersal Pattern Sierra." He taps his console a couple of times as he checks status updates. "And fire!"

    A rapid series of six torpedoes erupt from the torpedo tubes, spreading out into a star-like pattern before closing in and detonating ahead of the Mauritania, which shakes slightly as a yellow flash comes off of its warp field.

    "Damage report." Ryan stands and walks over to Alpha as Tala steps off the turbolift and relieves her counterpart.

    "Minimal. The torpedo volley detonated prematurely. Likely due to the distance between the two ships' warp fields." Alpha taps a few controls. "The Mauritania is returning fire."

    The ship suddenly lurches as sparks erupt all over the bridge and the hull groans. Crew members are flung from their stations as Ryan barely grabs hold of Alpha's console. "Report!"

    "Transphasic torpedo! It breached the shields! Hull breach on deck 12!" Tala taps her controls, preparing a new firing solution. "Ready to return fire!"

    "Fire at will!"

    The Victorious answers back with a series of quantum torpedoes, detonating just off the Mauritania's nacelles, the subspace disruptions ripping the ship out of warp, as the Victorious decelerates itself a few dozen kilometres later, turning to engage once more.

    Tala takes a deep breath as she starts locking her target. Suddenly, the ship rocks and she hears an alert chime. "They just knocked out our forward shield grid!"


    "Some kind of phaser blast! It went straight through our shields!"

    Ryan grimaces, turning to Tala. "Remodulate the shield frequencies! Alpha, keep them changing!" Ryan sits back in the command chair. "Now I know what kind of tech Starfleet was talking about."

    Carter looks at him, curious. "Meaning?"

    "Multi-frequencial Phasers. They change settings randomly and use sensor data to predict an enemy ship's shield frequency. They were designed to fight Borg adaptation."

    "How do you know that?"

    "Because I'm one of the engineers who designed the prototype for the damn thing!" He leans forward. "Bridge to Dannover!"

    "Dannover here!"

    "I need some options, lieutenant. I've got a ship up here which is able to predict our shield frequencies and which is armed almost as well as us in terms of firepower!"

    "I can try stopping them from attacking if I can get them to recognise the Queen preparation programming."

    "We're not taking a strategic option here, lieutenant!"

    "If I can get them to stop firing, I can get them to self-destruct, or at least make them docile long enough for you to do the work for them!"

    "We don't have time to prep!"

    Tala looks up, "Actually, sir... myself and Dannover have already done the prep. We thought it would give you some extra options."

    Ryan looks over at her, taking a breath and nodding. "Nice work. Alright Liz, get to work." He turns to Alpha. "Alpha, get down there and help her out. Ensign O'Connor to the Bridge. Ensign Day, take evasive action. Tala, fire at will, all weapons!"

    The Bridge crew attend to their newly issued orders almost immediately, Tala and Day exchanging targeting data and battle tactics as the Victorious does a full roll around her y-axis, allowing Tala to fire every single phaser bank in succession, the flurry of orange beams lancing against the shield of the Mauritania as it rolls to distribute the damage across all of its y-axis shield facings. The Victorious then picks up speed as it makes a high-energy turn to starboard and fires off a volley of transphasic torpedoes, which the Mauritania shoot down with their phasers.


    In the cybernetics lab, Varenn is placing a cortical monitor on Dannover's left temple. "This will monitor your neural patterns. If you start getting overwhelmed by the thoughts of the Borg on that ship, we'll terminate the link. Understood?"

    "Understood." Dannover takes a deep breath as she steps into the chamber, taking a pair of tiny cables and one by one inserting them into her cortical implant.

    Alpha soon walks in as the ship shakes from another phaser hit before taking one of the consoles. "Are you prepared to proceed, lieutenant?"

    Dannover takes another deep breath. "Not exactly." She exhales and nods to Alpha. "Okay, let's get this over with."

    Varenn takes another console, configured to monitor life readings, as Alpha activates the link. "Link established."

    Dannover suddenly feels herself flooded with thoughts, triggering a sharp inhalation. Varenn looks at Alpha with concern, "Her heart rate just doubled!"

    "Stand by." Alpha taps a few controls and the flood of thought starts to slow down. "Are you alright, lieutenant?"

    "I'm letting them access the interlink node. They've acknowledged the programme..." She gasps lightly. "They're... they're trying to lock me out. Alpha, open the link all the way!"

    "Are you crazy?!" Varenn stands from her seat and grabs a tricorder.

    "They can't fully access the programme, so it's getting tagged as malware! Open the link!"

    Alpha processes for a second before complying.

    "They've accepted the programming. I've been given control. All stop. Lower shields."


    "They're coming to a stop, shields down!" Ensign O'Connor turns from his station, the light Irish accent giving his exclamation added urgency.

    Ryan shoots up from his seat. "Transphasic Torpeodoes, full yield!"

    Tala frantically taps at her console. "Ready to fire!"


    "We're being hailed!" Tala taps quickly as the message comes in on an open channel. "It's... It's a surrender."

    Ryan blinks very briefly in surprise. "Belay my last order! Bridge to Cybernetics."

    "Lieutenant Alpha here."

    "Alpha, what's the situation down there?"


    Dannover is leaning on the railing of the chamber, panting a little as she's disconnected. "Dannover here, sir. I was able to break the Borg free from the return protocol and Borg programming. The Mauritania's crew is in control."

    "How did you...?" Ryan's voice echoes over the intercom.

    "The thing about using a single server... is there aren't any back-ups... Once I got them to recognise me as Queen, they sent all their programming codes to me. It's how the Queen maintains control over each Borg ship - the programming for each drone is uploaded to the interlink nexus of each ship and from there, the Queen can issue commands. I just turned myself into the nexus and Alpha caught the data with the comms buffer."

    "It is being purged at this moment, Captain." Alpha stands from his console.

    "The crew is asking to be given a runabout, captain. They got wind of my plan for disrupting the Borg invasion during the link. They want to try it. Most of them have no idea about the Mauritania's weapons and the rest are prepared to stay here."

    There's a moment of silence, before Ryan finally responds. "Nice work, Elizabeth."
  • antonine3258antonine3258 Member Posts: 2,391 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    I did like the flow of the mild bickering while going behind the Captain's back, and the battle scene had good pacing.

    Just to check if I followed - this is the (deassimilating) crew of the Mauritana that is asking for a runabount?
    Fate - protects fools, small children, and ships named Enterprise Will Riker

    Member Access Denied Armada!

    My forum single-issue of rage: Make the Proton Experimental Weapon go for subsystem targetting!
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited February 2015
    I did like the flow of the mild bickering while going behind the Captain's back, and the battle scene had good pacing.

    Just to check if I followed - this is the (deassimilating) crew of the Mauritana that is asking for a runabount?

    Yep. I did think when writing it that it could probably be a bit clearer, but it didn't make sense in context for Dannover to still think of them as Borg after the link.
  • ryan218ryan218 Member Posts: 36,069 Arc User
    edited March 2015
    EDIT: Okay, don't upload the entire chapter. Thanks, Forums. *Facepalm*
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