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Old July 6 2008, 09:37 PM   #1
DavidFalkayn
Commodore
 
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Lexington: Aliens

Here's the next tale in the saga of the USS Lexington, I hope everyone enjoys this story set during the TOS period.



ALIENS

“Hello, Robert.” Commodore Jerrik Kiersted grinned as his face appeared on Commodore Robert Wesley’s desk monitor. “Hope I didn’t take you away from anything important.”

As he gazed at the smiling image of Starbase 31’s Danish station commander, Wesley grinned back, “Nope.” The Lexington’s skipper responded, “Just reading through the latest intelligence reports.” His lips turning down into a worried frown, the grizzled veteran noted, “I saw where the free trader Amos Burke was reported missing. That makes the third in as many months in the same general area. I’d say we have a problem here, Jerrik.”

“You’re right. And it’s an ugly one.” Kiersted declared and then explained in greater detail. “It’s Walker and his people. The Commodore frowned. “They managed to land themselves an up-gunned and up-engined Orion raider. They’ve been raiding the shipping in this area since you’ve left. Just recently, a couple of petty officers stationed on the Evergreen were shanghaied by Walker and his gang. To make a long story short, Walker tangled with Marietta and the Scipio and did what he does best—turned tail and ran. The two petty officers—gutsy kids, both of them—got loose and stole a shuttle and got away. They positively identified Walker, his former first officer, and his old security chief. As for the two petty officers…” A smile crossed the Danish commodore’s face as he relayed the silver lining to this story, “They’re on their way to Starfleet Academy with Marietta’s and my recommendations.”

“Damn. That’s good news about those petty officers though—we need more good officers in the Fleet.” Wesley remarked as he took in Kiersted’s news. “I’m also glad Marietta was there. Is Walker working alone or in conjunction with the local Orion ahmet’sur?”

“We’re not really sure yet.” Jerrik admitted, “My intelligence people are digging but…”

“They’re going to take some time. I understand that.” Wesley reluctantly conceded and then admonished, “But they better hurry. For Walker and his people, this is about more than just making some easy scores—they want revenge—against the Fleet and against the people he felt wronged him. He knows Mitchell’s here, he knows Marietta’s here, he knows I’m here and he knows you’re here. This is personal. We have to deal with him and we had better do it soon.”

“No argument there.” Kiersted agreed. “I’ll keep you updated about what we find out. But…” The starbase commander paused for a moment to take a breath before continuing, “That’s not the only reason I contacted you. It seems we’ve come across another situation. One of our listening stations in the Expanses—Outpost Tango-Foxtrot Three, picked up some interesting signals coming from system Epsilon Erilae. The signals appear to be mostly entertainment and are primarily on the very-high and ultra-high radio bands, although there are also signals coming from the AM and FM bands. And…” the station commander remarked, sounding a cautionary note, “…we’ve picked up indications of military chatter. Also, the outpost has picked up some intriguing energy readings—looks like someone might be having an interplanetary war.”

“Not good.” Robert commented with a frown, “Unless they’re close to warp travel, our hands are kind of tied as they should still be covered by the Prime Directive. Hmmm…I wonder…wait a moment, Jerrik…” The commodore requested as he reached for the data slate on his desk, let me check something out.” Calling up a map of that region of space on his slate, Wesley’s brow furrowed, “Just as I thought.” Robert exclaimed, “That system’s within the portion of the sector disputed with the Klingons.”

“Right.” Kiersted agreed, nodding his head. “We need to know what’s going on there, Robert. If these people are close to developing warp travel and they’re already having a war, then things could get even more problematic than they already are over here. Also, if the Klingons are involved...”

“It could start another war.” Robert completed sourly. Flashing a confident grin, the rugged-faced commodore concluded, “Don’t worry, Jerrik, we’ll keep the wolf from your door.”

************************************************** **********************

“What are you picking up, Ms. Oudekirk?” Commodore Robert Wesley, the commanding officer of the USS Lexington, asked as he sat straight in his high-backed command chair.

“There’s a wide variety of electronic transmissions, Sir.” The willowy Dutch communications officer replied as she placed her ear piece back in her ear. “Newscasts and entertainment programming with most of the transmission in high definition audio and video digital signals. Also, quite a bit of military traffic.”

“That bears out the information we received from Listening Outpost Tango-Foxtrot Three and our probes.” Alexei Kuznetsov, the Lexington’s first officer, commented with a single nod of his head. “Approximately mid to late twenty-first century technology.”

“Maintain passive scans only.” Wesley instructed, “Let’s not give ourselves away unless we absolutely have to.”

“Aye, Sir.” The Lexington’s attractive and vivacious Andorian science officer, Lieutenant Commander Talana Zha’Thara, acknowledged, her face covered by the sensor hood she was bent over. Then, raising her head, she announced, “I’ve just picked up a vessel dropping out of warp.”

“Heading and speed?”

“It’s on a course for the fourth planet, moving at .5c and decelerating.” Talana replied professionally. Her antennae twitching in a manner that Wesley knew was one of relative surprise, she added, “The vessel appears to be fusion powered. No traces of dilithium or of the use of matter-anti-matter propulsion.”

“We’re only talking about a maximum speed of warp factor two then.” Lieutenant Commander G’arv noted with a dismissive grunt from his position at the engineering console. “And with those low powered engines, they won’t be able to effectively use their superluminal engines once they get deeper into the gravitic well of that sun.”

“Sir!” Lieutenant Oudekirk interjected, a note of excitement in her voice, “I’m intercepting two way communications from the larger moon orbiting the fourth planet.”

“Scanners have also picked up three small craft closing with the other vessel on an intercept trajectory.” Talana reported, her antennae twitching with excitement.

“Yellow alert. Raise shields.” Wesley immediately ordered as the alert light next to the turbolift flashed amber. “And put that communication on speakers, Ms. Oudekirk.” Cutting through the crackling static, the officers and crew on the Lexington bridge heard a human sounding voice.

“Intercept Wing One to Danae base. Closing to intercept with UIO.”

“The smaller ships are apparently fusion powered and are continuing to close with the other vessel at .1c and accelerating.” Talana, hunched over her scanner, reported as three small moving dots appeared on the main viewscreen. “I believe both they and the other ship should be within maximum visual range now, Sir.”

“Maximum magnification, Ms. Bathory.” Commodore Wesley commanded as he leaned forward in his seat. “Let’s see who we’re dealing with.”

“Aye, Sir.” The Hungarian helmsman responded as the small dots on the screen soon resolved themselves into the form of three small streamlined single seat craft, flying in a triangular formation, each one with what appeared to be two missiles attached to racks on the sides speeding towards another ship, this one resembling more than anything else one of the flying saucers out of twentieth century Earth folklore.

“Intercept range in twenty seconds.”

Engage.”

Watching in fascination, the bridge crew of the Lexington saw three missiles, one each launched from the intercepting single seat craft as the intruder evading, returned fire, a red beam lancing out from one of the shiny disks lining the bottom edge of the saucer as two explosions appeared on the Lexington’s viewscreen to be soon joined by a third as the last missile found its target.

“Intercept One to Danae base. UIO destroyed.”

“Good shooting, Intercept One.” The female voice replied, “Return to base.”

“Intercept One acknowledges. Returning to base”

“Looks like Jerrik was right.” Commodore Wesley muttered to himself before commanding, “Put some distance between us and those ships, Ms. Bathory. Take us to the outer edge of the system’s Kuiper Belt…warp four.” As the Constitution-class starship’s engines hummed, the commodore turned to his first officer, “We need to get a better read on what’s going on here. Whether the Klingons are involved and supporting one side or the other…what sort of risk is there for this war to spread out to neighboring systems…and finally, who these intruders those interceptors shot down are and what their game is…”

“Da.” Commander Kuznetsov replied in his usual rumbling voice, “But we can only get so much information through passive scans…”

“We’re going to have to put boots on the ground.” Wesley concluded, “But we find a way to do so without triggering their detection grid.” Deciding on a course of action, the commodore stood up, “Ms. Bathory…Mr. Lawford…keep your eyes peeled. I don’t want us to be accidentally picked up by some passing ship. Ms. Zha’Thara…I want you, Mr. G’arv, and Ms. Oudekirk to find a way for us to get close enough to the planet where we can beam down a shore party without being detected. Use whatever personnel you need. Ms. Oudekirk…I want your people monitoring communications. Turn what you get over to the people in linguistics, xenology, and cultural studies. We’ll meet in Briefing Room One in six hours. I want a plan for action then.”

************************************************** ******************

Monitoring her LADAR after the successful interception of the UIO hunter-killer triad, Lieutenant Myra Alys saw a large blip appear on her screen. Not another ghost! The green-haired flight controller sighed inwardly. Noting that the blip was near where Intercept One was still standing by, Lieutenant Alys took a deep breath as she leaned in towards her mike. But, before she could vector the interceptors in, she gasped in astonishment as the blip seemingly disappeared. Keying the mike to activate voice communications with the Intruder Detection And Tracking computer, Myra requested, “IDAT…vector and speed for UIO…”

“Unable to comply.” IDAT’s machine voice responded over the speaker. “UIO’s estimated speed not theoretically possible.”

“What do you mean its speed is not theoretically possible?” Myra inquired.

“UIO estimated speed was sixty-four times light speed.” The computer responded.

Taking a deep breath, Lieutenant Alys ordered, “Record all data and transmit to Illa Base. Maybe they can make something of it.”

************************************************** *********************

Waiting until the last of his senior officers had taken their seats around the oval briefing table, Commodore Wesley called the conference to order, “All right…report.”

“From what we’ve picked up from monitoring their communications channels…” Lieutenant Oudekirk began, “We’ve determined that they call themselves the Halenoi and their planet, Halen.”

“They’re a humanoid species…” Talana interjected, “Not too different from humans actually—some difference in hair color and iris color…”

“Nothing that can’t be taken care through basic cosmetic surgery.” Dr. Vincent chimed in.

“Good.” Wesley replied, nodding his head. “So…what do we know about them? Their culture? Who they’re fighting and why?”

“From what we’ve picked up through their broadcasts…” Cilla reported, “Halen is a balkanized world with three major nation-states and over a score more minor countries…territories…and city-states. All three of the principal states possess their own space programs, but they also cooperate in an umbrella defense organization formed after they’d expelled a reptilian species they call the Shlavka who contacted them approximately ten of their years ago.”

“The Shlavka ostensibly came to Halen in peace, but it didn’t take long before things went sour.” Talana said, picking up the narrative, “The Shlavka began to carry out a systematic plundering of Halen until the Halenoi finally succeeded in driving them out through a combination of military force and the use of a biological weapon that was especially tailored to infect reptilians—resulting also in the virtual extinction of all reptilian life on the planet.”

“Going by their fictional broadcasts, the Halenoi appear somewhat xenophobic.” Cilla declared, “One of their most popular programs is called The Revengers in which the heroes are a crack commando team charged with seeking out and eliminating potential off-world threats. While most of the storylines stem around the Shlavka…” the blonde communications officer said, sounding a cautionary note, “…there are several stories dealing with alien intrusions from other worlds…and with attempts to infiltrate Halenoi society.”

“Mr. G’arv…” The commodore inquired, addressing his chief engineer, “What do you have?”


“Their primary means of power is fusion.” The gruff Tellarite replied, “But our scans did pick up some curious energy readings coming from one of the three major powers.”

“Could they be conducting matter—anti-matter tests?’ Commodore Wesley asked.

“It’s possible.” G’arv conceded. “But I couldn’t say for sure—not from our present location.”

“What about these Shlavka? Do we know where they’re from?”

“No sir.” Lieutenant Mtolo answered. “None of the military traffic we’ve intercepted has mentioned anything concerning the possible location of Shlavka bases. We have…however…” the Zulu security chief added, “…extrapolated a possible location where those saucers might have originated from.”

Shaking his head, the Tellarite engineer snorted his derision, “Those ships leave emission trails that a half-blind cublet could follow. We traced their point of origin to this system.” G’arv declared as he activated the monitor screen sitting on the center of the table. “Xi Crianis.”

“It was charted by the Explorer Twelve deep space probe in 2228.” Lieutenant Commander Zha’Thara interjected. “K-class star with five planets, the second planet class M.”

“We need to know if the Halenoi are working on warp engines and if so—how close are they.” Commodore Wesley stated as he weighed his options. “That will play a major part in determining whether we make contact or not. And if we do decide to make contact…” The commodore exhaled as he sounded a cautionary note, “We’re going to have to be really careful here. These people have already been burned by aliens who called themselves friends—they’re not going to be too terribly trusting. Our landing party will have to be very careful.”

“Sir?” Cilla spoke up hesitatingly.

“Go ahead, Lieutenant.” Robert prompted encouragingly. “What’s on your mind?”

“Well, Sir…” The willowy blonde began, shyly at first and then picking up more confidence as she spoke, “With the Halenoi being as jittery and distrusting as they are towards outsiders…is it really such a good idea to be sending down a covert landing party. If something should happen and the landing party be discovered…”

“It could make matters worse…” Robert completed, nodding his head thoughtfully. “You’re right, Lieutenant. And under normal circumstances, I would agree with you that sending down a shore party would be too risky. But…” the experienced starship captain continued, “…we’re in a situation here where we might be damned if we do, but we’ll definitely be damned if we don’t. If the Halenoi develop warp travel and go looking for payback, this little war could expand very rapidly. We have to know how far along they are and the only way we can do that is by seeing for ourselves. Also, we need to get more information on the Shlavka. Have they been contacted by the Klingons? Can we perhaps act as a mediator and maybe end this war? Maybe…maybe not.” Pausing to take a breath, the commodore took a sip of now cold coffee. Making a grimace, the amateur pugilist continued, “But we’ll never know if we don’t try.” Sounding a note of encouragement for his junior officer, Robert concluded, “But you are right, whoever goes down to the surface will have to be very careful and be a quick study where alien cultures are concerned….that’s why I want you on the landing party…” Flashing a grin, the commodore inquired in an heartening tone, “You up for it?”

“Yes, Sir.” The young communications officer eagerly replied, happy at the opportunity to go down to the surface.

Pleased at his communications officer’s enthusiasm, Robert addressed his executive officer. “Alexei? Who else do you want on your party?”

Stroking his chin as he gave the matter some thought, the Russian commander replied, “Ensign Watley for general sciences. Also, we’ll need an engineering officer…”

“Take Collins.” Lieutenant Commander G’arv interrupted, “He might be as lazy as a fat Orion, but he knows his matter—anti-matter engines better than anyone else on this ship other than me. He can tell you if they’re close to developing warp propulsion and how close they are to it.”

“All right. Sounds good, Alexei. After the briefing, you and your people get to sickbay so that Dr. Vincent can take care of any necessary cosmetic surgery and then get some sleep. You’ve got a big day tomorrow.” Turning to his science officer, Robert inquired, “Do you have a way of getting us through their detection grid, Ms. Zha’Thara?”

“Yes, Sir.” The lovely Andorian science officer answered back, “This system’s sun is currently in a period of high activity—throwing out large quantities of solar flares at regular intervals. The next peak of activity should be in twenty-four hours. Those flares should—acting in conjunction with our own screens—mask our approach so that we can make a quick pass into transporter range, beam down a landing party, and then get out without being picked up on their instruments.” Pausing for a moment, Talana then warned, “But…the next period of high activity won’t be for another week…”

“So that means Alexei…” the commodore concluded as he once again addressed his first officer, “…you’re going to be stuck there for a week.”

“Don’t worry about us, Commodore.” The Bear responded with a toothy grin, “We’ll keep out of trouble.”

“I’m counting on that, Alexei.” Robert grinned back as he stood up. “That’s it, people. Unless there are any further questions, I’ll let you get to your duties. We move in twenty-four hours.”

************************************************** *********************
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Old July 6 2008, 09:39 PM   #2
DavidFalkayn
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Lexington: Aliens Part 1 cont

“Good news, Shafran.” The Shlavka first officer hissed as he extended a scaled green hand in salute. Lowering his hand, the bipedal reptilian reported as he floated weightless into the Second’s chair, “The sacrifices of our brethren were not in vain. Our infiltration team was able to avoid the Halenoi detection grid and land on the surface.”

“Good. We will wait until the sun has begun its solar flare activity and then return home.” Shafran Vissak replied as he turned about in his chair to face his underling. The multicolored scales on his neck, indicating his great age and high status, rippling, the commanding officer of the Shlavka infiltration vessel released a quantity of air, his hiss indicating his great pleasure in his mission’s success. “Their mission must succeed. If the warm-bloods discover the secret of superluminal travel…they will kill us all.” Shaking his head, Vissak muttered under his breath as his first officer returned to his station, “And they would be right to do so.”

************************************************** **********************

Entering the Danae Station lounge, Lieutenant Myra Alys, having changed from her skin-tight silver duty uniform to a short silver miniskirt that she wore along with her uniform top, brushed back a stray lock of her light-green hair. Spotting the man she was looking for sitting at a table preparing to eat his afternoon meal, her purple lips turned up into a grin as the amber-skinned woman approached the dispenser unit. Punching in the button for hot jarrok, Lieutenant Alys waited until the warm black fluid had filled her cup completely before retrieving it from its slot. Taking her drink, the young woman looked down on the pilot sitting at the table getting ready to dig into his rare carrack steak and fried vistal sticks with fondness, “Hungry, Merric?”

Looking up as he recognized the voice of the lovely intercept flight controller, Flying Officer Merric Freman grinned back, “Hey, Myra! You’d be hungry too if your breakfast was interrupted by an alert…”

“It was.” Lieutenant Alys riposted with a snort as she sat down across from the handsome pilot, “What do you think I was about to do before we picked up those blips?”

“So what are you doing with just a cup of jarrok?” The white-haired pilot teased, “Not like you need to lose any weight or anything—not from where I’m sitting…”

An appreciative leer crossed the young man’s face as his eyes took in the flight controller’s well-developed cleavage, provoking a good natured snort from his companion, “You really are a wristak, you know, Merric!”

“Yeah…” Merric grinned, “…but you love me anyway. So…” he asked, his grin disappearing, “…what’s really up? Why don’t you get a proper meal and join me?”

“I can’t.” Myra sighed, “I just got orders to take the first available shuttle back to Illa Base. Commander Strakan wants to meet with the senior intercept coordinators. I’m not sure what it’s about…maybe it has something to do with all those phantoms we’ve been picking up recently.”

“Goddamned phantoms.” Merric grumbled in a low voice, “Chasing those wisps is going to get one of us killed one day.”

“I saw one of those ‘phantoms’ this morning during the intercept…” Myra confessed, also speaking in a whisper, “Whatever it was…it was weird.” Seeing that she’d gotten her pilot friend’s attention, the flight controller explained, “It was big…and I mean big! About the size of one of the old Intruder transport saucers—but it didn’t have any of the characteristics of a saucer. For one thing, I could barely make it out on my screen—it kept appearing and disappearing. And then, just as I thought I had a fix on it and was about to divert your unit to its location…it disappeared…”

“Disappeared?” Merric repeated.

“Yeah.” Myra asserted, “It moved so damned fast that it was just like it had simply…vanished.”

“So…how fast was this…phantom…supposed to be going?” The young pilot asked with a sardonic grin.

“At least sixty-four times light speed.” The amber-skinned flight controller declared; her whispery voice filled with awe.

“That’s impossible!” Merric snorted, “Even the fastest Intruder saucers are barely faster than the speed of light.”

“All I know is what I saw and what my instruments tell me.” Myra replied, “I sent a report on to Illa Base and then about an hour ago, got the message to report back…”

“So…who’s your pilot?”

“Forsta.” Lieutenant Alys responded with a grimace. “I’m going to have to be cooped up for six hours with the tentak. I don’t think the man could keep his hands to himself if his life depended on it.”

“You know…” Merric offered, “Forsta owes me a favor or two. I could arrange to switch off with him…pilot you down to the surface…”

“In exchange for…” Myra replied, flashing a teasing grin.

“Dinner and a night out on the town after Strakan finishes with you.” The roguish pilot grinned. “C’mon…you know you want to cut loose and have some fun after being stuck out here for six monats.”

“You’re right about that.” The attractive flight controller sighed, “All right…dinner and dancing—but that’s all! You read me, Flying Officer Freman?”

“Loud and clear, Lieutenant!” Merric riposted with a mock salute. “I’ll pull the switch with Forsta and meet you in the shuttle ready room when you’re ready to go.”

************************************************** **********************

“Strap in.” Merric commanded with a joking voice as he ran through the final checklist. “We’re a go once I finish this. We better hurry though—the observatory reports that we’re due for some nasty solar flares.”

“Right.” Lieutenant Alys replied as she took her seat on the acceleration couch next to the pilot. Affixing her harness, the youthful officer sighed as she heard her fellow flight controller, Lieutenant Tara; give the final go-ahead for liftoff.

“Danae Base Shuttle One-Zed-Three…you are clear for launch.”

“Oh Hells!” The green-haired lieutenant swore as the sound of the initial boost rocket engines roared, pressing her back into her seat. “I hate this part!”

************************************************** *********************

“Solar flare activity commencing.” Lieutenant Commander Zha’Thara announced from her science station. “Now.”

“All right, Ms. Bathory…” Commodore Wesley ordered, “Take us in…warp six.”

“Warp six, aye.” The Hungarian helmsman acknowledged as the Lexington’s engines sprang to life.

************************************************** *******************

“Engage engines.” Shafran Vissak ordered, “Once we are safe of this sun’s gravitic well, activate the superluminal drive. It is time for us to go home.”

The infiltration saucer’s lower section glowed dimly as its fusion engines sprang to life and the craft began to spin. Releasing his harness as the saucer’s spin created artificial gravity; the Shafran spared the despoiled planet and its moon one last look. I’m sorry. The wizened commander, a veteran of the first invasion, thought to himself. For what we did to you and what we are going to do to you. May your gods and ours have mercy on us.

“Contact!” The Helm Officer called out. “Halenoi shuttle!”

“They must not be permitted to know of our presence.” Vissak hissed, “Prepare to fire.”

“Our systems are unable to target due to the solar flare activity.” The Second announced. “We’ll have to do it manually.”

“Do it.” Twin red beams lanced from two of the small disks lining the bottom of the saucer, their target.

************************************************** ********************

Friks!” The white-haired pilot swore as the laser beams just missed his craft. “UIO.”

“Were did it come from?” Myra asked as she immediately sprang into action, “Damn. These flares are interfering with the LADAR.”

“You should be thanking The One for those flares…” Merric remarked with a knowing smirk, “They’re the only thing saving us.” He pointed out in a level tone as he put the tiny fusion powered shuttle through a series of evasive maneuvers straining both the ship and its crew. “Their interference is also keeping the UIO from locking on to us.” Taking a deep breath, the pilot declared, “We’re closer to Halen than we are to Danae…I’m going to try to sucker them in closer—hopefully they’ll be picked up by our lower grid radar. Hold on to your seat.” The roguish young man exclaimed, “It’s going to be a wild ride.”

************************************************** *******************

“Approaching Halen.” Lieutenant Lawford announced as the planet filled the main viewscreen.

Catching glimpses of the surface between the white and gray clouds, Commodore Wesley shook his head in sadness as his eyes registered the planetary surface, mottled and brown in places, still feeling the effects from the despoliation several years earlier. “These Shlavka sure did a number on this place.”

“That they did.” Talana concurred, “I’m picking up evidence of strip mining…at least one entire sea drained…deforestation…it’s like a swarm of vezet insects hit the place.”

“We’re in transporter range now…” The English navigator declared, interrupting the Andorian science officer.

“Energize.” Wesley ordered. Then, as he was about to order the Lexingtonto warp out, his science officer called out.

“Two vessels approaching the planet.”

“Type and range.” The commodore ordered.

“One appears to be a shuttle craft—it matches the profile of the Halenoi craft we’ve been monitoring going between their moon base and the planet’s surface.” Talana reported, “…the other is a Shlavka saucer. It’s firing on the shuttle. Given their technology…I’d say neither one of them are close enough to detect us.”

“Main viewscreen.”

“Whoever that pilot is…” Aliz commented with a more than a note of admiration in his voice as the two ships appeared on the Lexington’s main viewer, “…he’s good.” Shaking her head, the Hungarian remarked, “He’s making a run for the planet’s surface. I guess he figures that if he gets close enough he’ll get some help.”

“A good analysis.” Robert complimented. “That’s what I would have done.” Turning to his science officer, the commodore asked, “Does he stand a chance?” His shoulders slumping at the lovely Andorian’s rueful shake of her head, Wesley sighed, “Damn. Prepare to take us out once the landing party has beamed down…warp seven.”

“Aye, Sir…warp seven.” Aliz acknowledged with more than a hint of sadness in her voice as she watched the alien saucer’s fire get closer and closer to its intended victim, gasping as one of the beams struck a glancing blow at the rear of the tiny shuttlecraft. “Sir?” The pixyish Hungarian called out in an almost pleading voice.

Coming to an immediate decision, Commodore Wesley hit the intercom button on his chair arm, “Wesley to transporter room. Lock on and transport the people in that shuttlecraft—now!”

“Aye, Commodore. We’ve got a lock. Energizing…”

************************************************** ********************

“We’ve been hit!” Myra cried out before losing consciousness, the restraints holding her to her couch the only thing keeping her in place as the shuttlecraft rocked from the blow delivered by the UIO, began tumbling end over end.

“I’m sorry, Myra…” Merric whispered as he fought to remain awake. “I guess we’re not going to be able to have that night out now…” As the young pilot’s vision grew dim, he heard a mysterious buzzing sound. Then, before everything went black, Merric wondered idly if he was going into the afterlife as the form of his copilot began to dissolve before his eyes.

“Enemy shuttle destroyed.” The Second called out triumphantly as Shafran Vissak glowered. Saying a silent prayer for the souls of the unfortunates trapped on that shuttle, the Shafran simply ordered, “Set us on a course for home. Maximum sublight acceleration.”

************************************************** *********************

“Did we get them?” Wesley inquired.

“We got them, Sir.” The transporter chief’s voice responded through the speaker. “They were both unconscious when they beamed aboard. The medtechs are taking them to sickbay.”

“Good.” The commodore replied with a satisfied grin. “Mr. Mtolo? Send a couple of your people down to sickbay—just in case. Dr. Vincent? Inform me when our guests have awakened.” Swiveling in his chair, Robert addressed his science officer. “What’s that Shlavka ship doing now, Talana?”

“It’s on a course taking it out of the system. They’re accelerating rapidly at subliminal speeds.”

“Follow them…Ms. Bathory—but not too closely. I don’t want them detecting us until they get where they’re supposed to be going.” Speaking aloud, the commodore declared, “The Halenoi might be covered by the Prime Directive, but the Shlavka aren’t—they’ve got interstellar flight. I think it’s time they understood that there are a lot bigger fish than them in this galaxy.”

************************************************** ********************
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Old July 6 2008, 09:59 PM   #3
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

Lexie's back!!!!

Whoooeeyy

What a ride. Great start to this new story.
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Old July 6 2008, 11:10 PM   #4
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

Agreed, great start to you new Lexington story with a lot going on.

An away team to a planet full of 20th century xenophobes? I think I've seen enough TOS to know that everything will be just fine ... just fine.

I liked Wesley's decision to beam the Halenoi on board. It kinda reminded me of something Kirk would have done. ... oh and I like that you are keeping the TOS sex appeal. Nice!

Looking foward to see in what directions you'll take us with this one.
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Old July 7 2008, 12:14 AM   #5
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

Great start to "Aliens!" This promises to be an exciting story. With a landing party that will be on their own for a week and two of the locals on the Lexington, you've already set up several interesting (and potentially explosive) scenarios.
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Old July 7 2008, 08:35 AM   #6
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

So I wait, and wait, and wait. Finally, more from the Lady Lex. Glad I waited-this soooooo feels like a TOS story with just a hint of TNG(cause Wesley is not quite as rambunctious as Kirk). Great set-up, great premise-should be real interesting to see how you keep all of the balls in the air.
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Old July 7 2008, 07:14 PM   #7
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

I'm ashamed to admit, this is the first Lexington story I've read. But it sucked me right in. This is a great set up. I'm really looking forward to where it goes.
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Old July 7 2008, 08:16 PM   #8
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

Dnoth wrote: View Post
I'm ashamed to admit, this is the first Lexington story I've read. But it sucked me right in. This is a great set up. I'm really looking forward to where it goes.
With all the reading I do, I still haven't read the Star Eagle or Dark Territory adventures yet. I'll get caught up eventually.
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Old July 10 2008, 12:54 AM   #9
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

Thanks guys, I'm working on the next part now. Hopefully this story will have plenty of TOS feel for everyone.
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Old July 16 2008, 02:17 AM   #10
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Re: Lexington: Aliens Part 2

“Commander, Shuttle A-34 is not answering our transmissions.” A Halenoi woman, wearing a formfitting beige one-piece suit with yellow trim announced, “And I’m not picking them up on radar.”

“That’s the shuttle with Lieutenant Alys and Flying Officer Freman, isn’t it?” Commander Edal Strakan, the head of Unified Military Body for the Repulsion of Alien Activity inquired. A tall, white-haired man with icy cold blue eyes, stern features, and wearing a white shirt with a dark blue Nehru-style jacket leaned over to examine the radar display as he asked his question.

“Yes, sir.” The woman replied glumly as she repeated her transmission. “For a moment, Sir…” The communications technician declared hesitatingly, “I thought I saw…”

“Go ahead, Sub-lieutenant. What did you see?”

“Sir…I thought I saw something appearing on the screen just as the solar flare activity started, but I lost it almost immediately.

“Could have been a Shlavka infiltration ship.” Commander Strakan mused. “They might know about Project Sunrise. Contact Colonel Restof at the Kallyna Research Facility.” The commander ordered, “Tell him the base is to go on high alert until further notice.”

“Yes, Sir.” The communications tech acknowledged crisply.

Waiting until his orders had been carried out, Strakan then instructed, “Also, contact Colonel Freman—he should be at home now and have him come in immediately.”

“Should I inform him about what happened?”

“No.” Commander Strakan replied, shaking his head. Sighing, the white-haired commander murmured in a low voice, “He should hear the news about his son from me.”

************************************************** **********************

Rematerializing in a blind alley, the landing party immediately scanned the area with their eyes as Commander Kuznetsov and Lieutenant Collins kept their hands close to their phaser-ones. Hearing the sounds of traffic coming from the other end of the alley, Alexei motioned for Lieutenant Oudekirk and Ensign Watley to begin their readings. Taking out their tricorders, the two women quickly and efficiently set about their tasks as Kuznetsov and Collins stood watch. Looking up into the pristine blue and white sky, the Russian first officer noted, “Doesn’t look so bad for a planet that had been ravaged just a decade ago.”

“The Halenoi were able to reverse engineer some of the technology and information the Shlavka left behind.” Ensign Watley explained as she continued her readings. “That permitted them to clean up a great deal of the damage that was done, but there are still areas of the planet’s surface that are virtually uninhabitable.”

“Where exactly are we?” Lieutenant Collins inquired, his lips turning up into a broad grin as he spotted a sleek four-wheeled land vehicle parked towards the end of the alleyway. “Do we have a name for this city?”


“The name of the city is Kallyna.” Lieutenant Oudekirk replied as she brushed aside a stray lock of platinum-hued hair, her normal wheat-blonde hair colored as part of her disguise. Along with contacts giving her iris’s a lilac hue and purple lip gloss, she could easily pass as a native of the planet.

“The Lexington’s scans indicated that wherever the Halenoi are conducting their experiments is near this city.” Alexei declared in his usual gruff tone. “So, our first order of business is to find a place we can operate from freely. Suggestions?”

“We could rent a motel…” Cilla offered, “…but first I would need access to a computer terminal so that I could hack into one of their financial institutions and set us up with a credit account.”

“We should be able to find one in a public library.” Ensign Watley suggested.

“That would also give us an opportunity to learn a little bit more about the situation here.” The Bear observed, nodding his head with approval. “Very well…let’s go. And remember—we are to not to draw attention to ourselves, so avoid contact with all Halenoi unless necessary—and most important—avoid all contact with the authorities.”

************************************************** ********************

Consciousness slowly returning to her, Lieutenant Myra Alys’s eyelids fluttered open revealing several blurred ghostlike forms moving about her. Forcing her eyes to stay open, the fuzzy figure lying down next to her resolved itself into that of her friend and comrade, Flying Officer Merric Freman. The other standing and moving blurry images sharpened until the young flight controller was finally able to recognize five beings, all seemingly Halen in appearance, three male and two female, wearing red and blue uniforms. Feeling the cushioned, yet firm surface beneath her as her eyes slowly took in her surroundings, her heart froze as she came to the realization that she was lying on an examination table. They’ve taken us! The young woman panicked as frightening images of the recent past and her basic training rushed through her mind. They’re going to experiment on us!

Coming to consciousness as well, similar thoughts to that of his female companion were also flooding Flying Officer Freman’s mind. Pushing his fears down, the pilot swore to himself as, feigning unconsciousness, he pretended to close his eyes. They won’t take me. Not without me taking a few of them with me first.

“Doctor?” Nurse Papadopoulos whispered, motioning with her data slate at the instrument readings above both the patients’ biobeds, “They’re conscious.”

“Yeah…” Dr. Vincent answered back in a low voice, cracking a crooked grin, “…but the gentleman over here doesn’t want us to think that.” Motioning to the security troopers to take alert positions, the balding surgeon addressed both of his patients in a soft, reassuring voice, “I’m Dr. Charles Vincent and you’re on board the Federation starship USS Lexington. You’re safe here. No one’s going to hurt you.”

“You’re lying…” The pilot croaked, realizing that his ruse had been pierced, “I’ve seen for myself what you Shlavka do, and I know all about the mind games you people play on us. I won’t let you do that to me. I’ll kill myself first.”

“We’re not Shlavka…” Dr. Vincent reassured, “Your ship was damaged and we rescued you.”

Jumping off the table, the pilot staggered towards the man wearing the short sleeved blue shirt, his image rolling before his eyes as they clouded before going black. Feeling arms catching him, the pilot felt them to guide him back to his bed as he vaguely heard voices and then a hissing sound as something was pressed against his neck and then…quiet.

Myra’s heart raced as she witnessed the scene playing out next to her. Struggling to sit up, the youthful amber-skinned woman heard a soft voice as she felt something pressed against her neck, “Calm down…it’s just a sedative…no one is going to hurt you.”

“They’re stable, Doctor.” Nurse Papadopoulos reported as the life readings above the two biobeds beat a constant reassuring drum.

“Good. We’ll let them rest a little longer—that’ll give their bodies a bit more time to adjust.” Dr. Vincent replied. “Continue monitoring them and let me know if their condition changes.”

“Aye, Sir.” The young dark-haired nurse acknowledged as Charles returned to his office. Tapping the intercom button next to his computer monitor, the Massachusetts born physician spoke, “Sickbay to bridge.”

“Go ahead, Doctor.” Commodore Wesley’s voice replied from the intercom speaker.

“We had to sedate our patients…I figure that it’ll be another hour or so before they awaken.”

“Very well, Doctor.” The commodore answered back, “I’ll come down to sickbay then.”

Turning his attention back to the viewscreen, Wesley watched the Shlavka saucer as it continued its course homeward. “Continue following, Ms. Bathory…but stay out of their sensor range.”

“Shouldn’t be too hard to do, Sir.” The Hungarian pilot confidently replied, “They’re so slow and their sensor technology so primitive that we could probably catch up to them from Starbase 31.”

“Don’t get overconfident, Ms. Bathory.” The commodore gently, yet firmly, chided. “Even the most primitive technology can give you a nasty surprise if you’re not ready for it.”

“Aye, Sir.”

Robert swiveled his chair towards his science officer, “Any signs of other activity, Ms. Zha’Thara?”

“No, Sir.” The Andorian science officer replied, “Other than the ship we’re pursuing, I’m not detecting any other Shlavka vessels or probes.”

“All right…keep your eyes peeled though…” The commodore directed, “I don’t want us to stumble into any ambushes.”

************************************************** *********************

“Systems are nominal, Shafran.” The Second reported as he maintained a respectful distance from his commanding officer.

“Good.” Shafran Vissak replied, his breath coming out as a slight hiss. “Maintain scans.”

“With respect, Shafran, why do you always give that order?” The Second inquired as his curiosity finally got the better of him. “I have served with you for three cruises, Shafran, and without fail, once we cross the Halenoi system’s heliosphere and enter interstellar space, you give the same order. The Halenoi have no interstellar craft as yet and once our infiltration team succeeds in its mission, they won’t have any for several revolutions to come.”

A slight rumble escaping his throat, the Shafran motioned for his Second to come closer. “My friend…it is not the Halenoi I fear…”

Shafran?”

The hiss escaping the old Shafran now resembling a sigh, he explained, “It was eight revolutions ago. We were testing the Halenoi defenses. My Intruder group was a diversion as we attempted to land an infiltration mission once we’d discovered that a few of our species are immune to the Halenoi Hell Virus. After we turned back and had crossed the heliosphere, my scan technician reported an object following us as we were about to pass through the Takshik Belt and I ordered my Intruder to come to a full stop and power down all but essential systems. I then took over the visual scanscope. That was when I saw it.” Pausing to take a breath, the old commander continued in an awed whisper, “It was large…bigger than ten…twenty intruder saucers, but it looked like nothing I have ever seen before. A sort of spherical structure was in front connected by a long boom. In the rear of the ship on both sides were wing-like structures, and on either wing a rectangular structure was connected. I watched as it moved past—just like a sercor in search of prey. It was beautiful—and frightening—at the same time.”

“But you never reported it, Shafran, why not?”

The Shafran answered back with a hiss of gentle laughter, “And what would have happened to me? At best I would have been retired…at worst…reassigned to a livestock camp. No…” The elderly reptilian declared with a shake of his head, “Soon I will step down and you will be Shafran and when that day occurs, I want you to keep one thing in mind, Second…and that is to tread warily, for remember, even the sercor, ferocious though he may be, is preyed upon by the trshln.”

[FONT=&quot]************************************************** ********************* [/FONT]
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Old July 16 2008, 02:19 AM   #11
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Lexington: Aliens Part 2 cont

Their drop capsules safely hidden, Altron Assig, the head of Shlavka Infiltration Team Six turned towards the other three members of his squad. “Check your vocalizers.” He instructed as he carried out a careful inspection of his people. Nodding his head in approval as he examined the latex-like outer skin covering and artificial hair of each of his people, ensuring that there were no tears or rips that might reveal that they were not truly Halenoi, but were in actuality, disguised Shlavka. The vocalizers were an important element of disguise. When the Shlavka made their first contact with the Halenoi, they had adopted the ruse of appearing in mammalian form in an initially successful effort to lure their intended victims into a false sense of security. However, the early vocalizers, even though they were able to cover up reptilian speech patterns, suffered one critical flaw—they produced a rather distinctive sound that easily marked the user as not being Halenoi. The current models though, could much more accurately imitate Halenoi speech. Now, it took either very well attuned ears or the use of special equipment to determine whether a vocalizer was being used or not.

Following their repulse from the Halenoi home world, the Shlavka had been carrying out infiltration missions of various sorts—intelligence gathering, resource accumulation, kidnappings, and, as was this team’s mission, acts of sabotage and assassination. To be assigned to an infiltration squad was a mark of honor for any Shlavka, to have survived more than one infiltration mission gave one even more prestige, which translated to better living quarters, more luxuries, and more plump and tender livestock from the Halenoi who had the misfortune of being taken away by the Shlavka and transported back to their homeworld ten years earlier. And to lead a mission of this importance—for Assig this could mean promotion to Shafran, the command of his own infiltration squadron, and…his choice of livestock—maybe even a Halenoi herd to call his own.

After inspecting the last of his team, Assig allowed his Second to carry out a similar process for him. With the Second’s nod of approval, the team leader spoke, “Our orders are simple—we are to infiltrate the Halenoi research facility at Kallyna, sabotage the prototype star drive they are suspected of building and…” he emphasized as he distributed photographs of a pale-skinned violet haired middle-aged Halenoi woman, “…kill this woman and as many of the rest of her research team as possible. Her name is Dr. Alyta Tyee and she is the project leader. While we want to terminate as many of her scientists as we can—it is urgent that she die. We believe that she is the driving and creative force behind the project. Her death will set the Halenoi back for revolutions—possibly tens of revolutions. It is vital for the survival of the Race that we succeed. Are there any questions? Good. Let us be on our way.”

************************************************** ********************

“Their automobiles seem to run primarily off of fuel cells.” Lieutenant Collins noticed as the landing party walked past a beautiful copper-hued vehicle parallel parked on the street in front of the library. The gull-wing like door of the car opened to reveal a well-coiffed chestnut-haired man wearing a brownish leather jacket and matching slacks and carrying an attaché case. The door closing behind him, the man slipped coins into a meter in front of his car. Giving the ladies a brief flirtatious grin, the man made his way down the sidewalk, entering a building next to the library.

“Another result of reverse engineering.” Alexei noted with a frown.

“Yes, Sir.” Cilla affirmed as the foursome made their way up the library’s concrete steps. “Prior to the Shlavka, the Halenoi relied on fossil fuel as their primary energy source.”

“So…In a way…” Jennifer mused, “The Halenoi have the Shlavka to thank for their rapid technological advancement.”

“Perhaps.” The Bear acknowledged, “They paid a high enough price for it.”

Entering the library, Cilla at once spotted a section devoted to computer access in a room behind a counter manned by a man and a woman.. “Circulation desk?” The Dutch communications officer guessed. “We might have to get permission to use their terminals.”

Nodding his head, Alexei agreed, “Very well, Ms. Oudekirk. Go.”

Approaching the woman behind the counter, Cilla flashed a polite smile, “Hello. My friends and I are new here and we were wondering if we could access a terminal?”

Jerking her head towards the man at the other end of the counter, the green-haired woman answered back in a bored tone, “Aric is in charge of electronic resources. Go to him.”

“Whatever.” Cilla replied with a snort as she walked down to where an attractive, fairly young man with dark-green hair and light skin stood. Approaching the man, the willowy Cilla spoke up, “Hello…I need some help.”

“Hello.” The young man replied, his lips turning up into a smile as he saw the tall blonde standing on the other side of the counter facing him. “What can I do for you?”

“I need to access a terminal…”


“Of course…your ident card please?” The clerk asked as he held out his hand.

“Here.” Cilla replied as she handed him a fake identification card that she and the rest of the landing party had been issued. Hope we got them right. Cilla thought as the man perused her card.

“You’re a long way from home.” The man remarked as he swiped the card in a card reader.

Crossing her fingers behind her back, Cilla plastered a polite smile on her face, “Yes. I plan to start school here next term.”

“The Kallyna Science Institute?” Aric asked as he handed Cilla her card back.

Breathing a sigh of relief, the Dutch officer responded, “Yes. Electronics.”

“That’s a coincidence.” The youth grinned, “I’m going there too—except I’m in aerospace engineering.” Pausing for a moment as if unsure whether he could continue, Aric took a deep breath, “Maybe we’ll run into each other on campus—perhaps go for some jarrok?”

“Doubtful…” Cilla replied in a suddenly frosty tone. “My terminal?”

“Oh…” Aric exclaimed, somewhat disheartened by the willowy Cilla’s coolness towards him. “Terminal three…”


“Thank you.” Cilla responded flatly as she quickly turned away from the poor dumbfounded clerk.

Watching as her rival walked away from the counter and into the computer lab, Jennifer shook her head, “What is her problem? She didn’t have to brush that poor guy off so rudely.”

“That’s our Ice Princess.” Collins whispered back. “That sap got off lucky compared to how she’s treated some of the guys I’ve known who’ve tried just talking to her.”

“Stow the useless boltovnja!” The Bear ordered in a low growl that immediately silenced the two junior officers standing with him. Jerking his head towards what appeared to be a casual reading section, Alexei commanded, “We can wait over there until Lieutenant Oudekirk is done.”

************************************************** *********************

“Come in Alec. Grab yourself a drink from the bar and have a seat.” Commander Strakan invited, gesturing towards the bar.

“What’s going on, Ed?” The ruddy-faced Alec inquired as he made his way to the bar. Taking a glass, he placed it under a dispenser. First, the dispenser dropped two cubes of ice into the glass. Then, he pressed another button, causing a yellowish liquid to be dispensed into the glass. Taking his drink, he made his way to Strakan’s desk, sitting in a comfortable chair opposite his superior. “I received an urgent call to come in and when I asked why, I was only told that you would fill me in…”

Taking out a small leather case from underneath his jacket, the commander opened it, offering a dark cheroot to the man sitting across from him before taking one for himself. As both me lit the ends of their cigars, Commander Strakan explained in a solemn voice, “Several hours ago a shuttle piloted by your son and carrying Lieutenant Myra Alys was lost in transit from Danae Base. I’m sorry, Alec.”

Listening silently, his face a blank mask, Colonel Freman sipped his drink. “Was it the Shlavka?”

“We think so.” Strakan replied. “Possibly a Shlavka infiltrator. We think they might be going for Project Sunrise.”

“When do you want me there?” Alec asked as he finished his drink.

“Look, Alec…” Commander Strakan began only to be cut off by his second in command and friend.

“Ed…I know what you’re going to say—to take a few days off…give myself time to grieve…but I’ll be ok.” Shaking his head, Alec pleaded, “I need to do something…anything…”

Taking a deep breath and exhaling, Strakan relented, “All right, Alec. Colonel Restof has things in hand at the research facility, but I’m going to need someone at Danae Base. I want to know how these infiltrators are getting in and I want that leak plugged.”

Standing up, Colonel Freman put his cheroot out in an ashtray as he set his glass down. His face a grim mask, the colonel vowed, “Consider it plugged.”

************************************************** ********************
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Old July 16 2008, 03:15 AM   #12
Dnoth
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

This story is going along nicely. I could very easily visualize it. Though, my mind did wander to "V" for a moment.
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Old July 16 2008, 05:10 AM   #13
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

Yes, there are actually two "stealth" crossovers here. "V" is one. Now...what's the other?
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Old July 16 2008, 06:42 PM   #14
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

DavidFalkayn wrote: View Post
Yes, there are actually two "stealth" crossovers here. "V" is one. Now...what's the other?
Hmmm. Well, the members of the landing party aren't the size of mice, so I guess we can rule out "Land of the Giants."

Good story-line, DF. You're doing a great job of maintaining the TOS feel.
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Old July 16 2008, 08:35 PM   #15
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Re: Lexington: Aliens

"War of the Worlds"? Feeding on the people....

this is a great 3way tale, each factions' story has its own flavor. Keep it up.
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