Herroton City. Herroton. Epsilon Delta system.
November 26th 2151.
The name 'Enterprise' seemed vaguely familiar to Trex, though he couldn't quite place it. He activated his computer and ran a search. Almost instantly large numbers of results turned up. Few were from the general Denobulan archives, as a small colony on the edge of Denobulan territory Herroton had little need for military information, and as such there was very little data present on alien space vessels. But thanks to the human presence at the archaeological site the Earth courier ships always brought back-copies of what they persisted in calling 'news papers', even though paper itself hadn't been part of it's make up for decades. The papers were archived automatically, the local database was more than large enough. Trex spent some time researching the ship whilst waiting for it to get into range.
Presently the intercom buzzed. His secretary, announcing that Commissioner Tovan had arrived to see him. He did not have an appointment. Trex bade him to enter.
"Greetings, Governor. I understand we have an Earth ship approaching." Tovan was a tall man who, apart from a slight limp, which he had been known to exaggerate when it suited him, carried himself with a military bearing. A veteran of the last bout of skirmishes with the Antarans, he had drifted from post to post over the past few decades, before finally ending up as commander of the colony's combined police and civil defence force. Trex considered him to be somewhat set in his ways, but liked him anyway.
"Yes, a Declaration class ship called the Enterprise. I've just been reading up on it. Fascinating. I think...oh, please sit down Tovan." He gestured to the chair opposite him at the desk.
"In a moment. a moment. I just want to stretch the legs. The old war wound, you know." He patted his leg for emphasis, and began strolling in an apparently random path around the office. "Declaration class you say? One of their new warships. Wouldn't mind a good look at it. I'm sure High Command would be very interested in any thing we could find out."
Trex turned back to his screen. "I very much doubt the humans will be offering guided tours. Still, any data we pull in from our regular scans, we can send off home next time one of our couriers is here."
"Regular scans only?" Tovan's apparently random course had led him, with a certain degree of inevitability, to the drinks cabinet. "Do you mind...?" he added innocently, lifting a curved bottle.
"Regular scans only." the governor confirmed, giving the same gesture of permission he'd earlier given to Redmane. "We'll not do anything that could be considered espionage. Our treaty expressly forbids that."
Tovan muttered something, his words drowned out by the pouring of liquid. The sound went on for a distressingly long time. "Well, I suppose we'll still be able to get something useful. Ah, the old leg's feeling a lot better. Think I'll sit down now. Look, what's got you so engrossed? You've hardly looked up from that screen."
"Well, I know what you look like." Trex said with a chuckle. "This does make for interesting reading. We've only got the non-classified information, the data the humans have released for their general public, but still...Do you remember that business a few months back, the rescue of the Vulcan Premier? That was Enterprise."
Tovan sat carefully. He pushed a small tumbler across the desk, keeping a much larger one for himself. "Now that is interesting. I was back home when that news broke. Spoke to an old friend in Special Operations. She couldn't tell me everything they knew, and they only knew a little themselves, but they were quietly impressed. SpecOps has a lot of respect for the Pathfinders, the Earth Marines special forces unit. Apparently they're the ones that carried out the rescue, although why they were on the Enterprise in the first place is a bit of a mystery. Ship security is normally a job for the regulars."
Trex took a sip of the Saurian brandy, enjoying the warmth as it went down. "Ah. Something else important. Despite being part of their military, it is commanded by a UESPA officer. None other than Captain Jonathan Archer. Oh, come on, surely you've heard of him Tovan!" he added at the Commissioner's blank expression.
"Should I have?"
"Should you ha...? He was the commander of the Earth ship that made first contact! Spent nearly a year on Denobula as part of the early diplomatic process! You know, him!"
A flicker of recognition passed over Tovan's face. "Oh, yes. Yes, I think I remember now."
"You think you remember. Anyway, if we meet him, be careful with your words. He is known to have a basic proficiency in our language. Maybe better than that now, the records are a little out of date. And also be careful around..." he turned back to the screen, reading the unfamiliar name. "...Hoshi Sato. She is their communications expert. Fluent in dozens of languages, including ours. Probably speaks it better than you do."
Tovan grunted. "That's not too difficult. Anyone else I should know about?
"I'll get my people to put together a briefing pack. It'll be based on what little data we have available, so it will probably be rather scant. Although there is one...no. you wouldn't be interested in her."
"Her?" Tovan asked casually
Trex said nothing for a moment, making Tovan wait. "Yes, a Professor Partridge. Civilian science advisor. One of their best minds, apparently. And also something of a celebrity, hence the surfeit of information on her. It seems that when not working she likes to be in the public eye. Going to the best parties, appearing in the mass media, romantic relationships with Royalty. Although the latter is always rumour, the papers are quick to point out. She has also worked as something the humans call a 'glamour model'."
"What's a glamour model?" said Tovan, with a furrowed brow.
"One of these, apparently." Trex turned the screen so Tovan could see it. Tovan went very still for a moment, though his eyes widened. Then in one sudden movement he drained his tumbler, gulping the fiery liquid down.
"By Kralon! She is most....handsome, for a human. Perhaps, in the interest of interplanetary relati---"
He was interrupted by the buzzing of the intercom. "Governor, this is the Command Centre. The Earth ship is on final orbital approach, following our navigational instructions precisely. They've started transmitting their test signal. We should have real time visual communications soon. If we respond with our signal they can calibrate their systems at the same time, and that would speed up the process.
"Very good. Begin transmission. I will be with you shortly." He turned off the intercom and stood. "Coming?"
"Certainly." Tovan said, standing. He reached across the desk, picked up Trex's unfinished drink, and polished it off. "No sense letting it go to waste, hmm?"