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Old November 3 2013, 07:19 PM   #23
Rear Admiral
Re: UT-TFV: "No Win Scenario"


Meet the cooler head.

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Main Bridge
USS Empress

“Tanerasia Ni-Inguyokaii,” Chief Thav’s voice thundered, shaking her loose from her complacency, “You’ve got to put a stop to this,” the hefty Andorian added. He was halfway out of his seat at the auxiliary aft engineering console.

Despite the circumstances, Tan smiled. “No one has called me by my full name since I was a cadet.” Tan had decided to shorten her name, breaking apart her first name because she thought it would be easier for others to pronounce. Her Academy instructors doubtlessly thanked her, Tan imagined.

“Perhaps that’s because you haven’t frinxed up something as badly since,” Thav blistered.

The Efrosian winced. “You’re right,” she said, her tone and countenance sobering. She tugged down on her tunic and reappraised the scene before them.

Ariane and Baltimore continued their slow dance, while Shuttlesworth trudged toward an unmoving K’mpec. A riot of fear, desperation, and ego were all raging before her.

Things had broken down so quickly it had taken her by surprise and overwhelmed her. For too long, all Tan had been able to do was watch in sick wonder as the intercept group turned their phasers on each other, a mini-civil war over the desire of Commander Rhizzo and Captain Tanaka to use banned weapons.

The captain imagined that Captain Landau would not have allowed things to devolve to this point. In fact, it’s doubtful that Rhizzo would’ve ever bucked the venerable captain.

Landau had a respect that Tan had not earned. Perhaps it was time to change that situation. “Mr. Sheppard,” she put on her best command voice. It was a tone that would brook no debate. Because Tan realized she had to win back her crew in addition to commanding the respect of the rest of the intercept group.

“Aye captain,” Sheppard quickly replied. Tan glanced at the man. He was on the edge of his seat. He had been chomping at the proverbial bit to get involved. The Efrosian tried to ignore the doubt glinting in the human’s eyes.

“Get me the prefix code overrides for all of those ships,” she ordered. “It’s time to put the children in their corners.”
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Ready Room
USS Empress
Five Hours Later…

“You have no right!” Commander Rhizzo thundered. Captain Tan Erasia leaned back in her seat, and took the woman’s outburst in stride.

“You can’t seriously have just said that right now,” she replied. Then she leaned forward, propping her elbows on her empty, polished desktop. Her expression hardened. “You’re self-righteousness rings a bit hollow since my away teams are removing all traces of illegal subspace weaponry from your armories.” The other four ships in the intercept group hung idly in space, their weapons and shields deactivated.

Tan had locked out the ship’s commanders from changing the prefix codes once Empress had taken control of them. And she would remain in control of the weapons and defense systems until Commander Sheppard confirmed that all subspace weaponry had been confiscated. Out of a sense of fairness, Erasia kept Baltimore and Shuttlesworth on the hook as well until the situations on both Ariane and K’mpec were secure. Captain Thelius had already made his displeasure well known, and Captain Ottah had been too gracious to do so, but Tan didn’t care. It might have taken her a bit too long to respond to the fracas, but once she did so, she moved swiftly and decisively.

“Captain, I still think this is a mistake,” Captain Tanaka said. At least the human, standing beside the still fuming Rhizzo, was contrite.

“Kenji you can think what you like,” Erasia shrugged, “but you should be pleased that I am letting you both keep your tricobalt devices.”

“This is outrageous!” Rhizzo threw up her arms. Her jowly, wrinkled cheeks, jiggled at the sudden, violent movement.

“And your instigation of this melee, that wasn’t?!” Erasia stood up, planting her hands wide apart on her desk, her pale blue eyes shooting disruptor beams at Rhizzo. “Give me one good reason not to still install Commander Atwell in command of your vessel?!”

Tan was at least happy to note that the man hadn’t received any serious injuries after he had been shot by Rhizzo’s security officer while acting on Erasia’s orders to replace the rebellious Rhizzo.

“Captain,” Tanaka said quietly, yet firmly, a voice of reason. “Despite her temper and rashness, Commander Rhizzo is one of the best strategic minds we have. She was instrumental in stopping the Dominion from taking the Kabrel system, and she received a Star Cross for her actions during the Talarian Incursion.”

“I know her service record,” Erasia snapped, still miffed at Rhizzo’s haughty attitude. For her part, the Zakdorn wasn’t backing down. Rhizzo glared right back at Tan, with her arms crossed tightly across her chest.

“To be blunt, we need her for this fight,” Tanaka said, “Whereas we might survive seconds against the Kothlis’Ka, Rhizzo could get us minutes, and that might help us change the tide of battle.”

All three knew it was unlikely, but Tan nevertheless conceded the point. A few more minutes might impress upon the Romulans and Tholians how fierce the Starfleet crews fought to protect them. While that might matter little to the policy makers on Romulus and Tholia, it could endear them to the general populaces. And Tan realized that was better than nothing.

Not looking at Tanaka, Tan kept her focus on Rhizzo. “You better be glad I trust Captain Tanaka’s judgment, despite all that has happened.” She stood up, and the tension began to drain from her muscles. Still looking at the Zakdorn, Tan’s gaze softened, and became searching, imploring. “Sometimes it’s not winning the fight that counts; it’s how we conduct ourselves while fighting it. And if we are going into an impossible situation, I would rather leave this galaxy knowing that we upheld the principles we swore to give our lives for in the first place.”

“What good are those principles if they do nothing to stop that armada?” Rhizzo rejoined.

“Gilma, we don’t know if that we don’t have enough extant firepower to stop the Kothlis’Ka,” Tanaka conceded, and Erasia nodded in agreement.

“Kenji is right,” the Efrosian said, “We don’t know if our weaponry is enough to stop them without resorting to illegal armaments.” Pausing, she drew herself up to her full height and looked them both in the eye before adding, “But we’re going to find out.”
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Last edited by DarKush; November 3 2013 at 08:04 PM.
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