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Old August 31 2009, 08:32 PM   #406
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Sorry, one quick post. I did a review of The Never-Ending Sacrifice. I expect to incorporate only broad strokes in my own work...I'm too far diverged now from Pocket Books for it to be any other way, too closely attached to "my" Cardassia. That said, I still enjoyed reading this.

Just watch out--thar be spoilers in them far hills!

http://trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=101977&page=3
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Old September 1 2009, 02:24 PM   #407
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

^ I have to avoid that thread (and possibly this fanfic) for the time being as I don't wish to spoil my enjoyment of TNES.

I wonder how it ends...
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Old September 1 2009, 03:18 PM   #408
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Well, don't worry...THIS fanfic won't spoil TNES. You'll be OK.
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Old September 1 2009, 03:32 PM   #409
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Phew, this Britassian is much relived by that
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Old September 1 2009, 06:28 PM   #410
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Okay, Nerys, allow me to say what is doubtless on everyone's lips:

Looking forward to the next installment!
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Old September 1 2009, 07:38 PM   #411
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Glad to know! I do apologize for the delays...I was in the middle of a move--and I also am very close to finishing Part I of my SigCat story, "The Desolate Vigil." That story will certainly be up by the end of the week, and from there I'll be clear to move on The Thirteenth Order.

So SOMETHING is coming, even though it's my other universe.
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Old September 21 2009, 03:37 AM   #412
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Before you guys say this is too wild to be true, consider some of the extreme distances we've seen the Dominion transport people over. Either their transporters have a LOT more power than Federation/Cardassian ones, or they use what they do have WAY more effectively. Which is why I decided to go for this...

-------
2375—In orbit of Lessek

CUW Sherouk

“Gul…we just lost one!”

Pain shot up Berat’s sensitive neck ridges, straight to the base of his skull and he winced despite himself. “Hăcet!” he whispered under his breath. He’d known there would be losses and as a Cardassian soldier he was ready to accept them—but even for the most disciplined Cardassian there was still the gut-wrenching sensation of unknowing, that terrible wondering who would return from this mission in the cargo bay under the watch of the final escort. “Rota, how much longer until we clear the stratosphere?”

“Twenty seconds more, Gul!”

On the viewscreen Berat and the entire crew beheld the ever-widening field of destruction on the shrinking planet below. The shockwave from the incredible amount of thrust being produced by the Sherouk and the Hide’eki slammed into base shields and then into the ground. Then the electromagnetic pulse seared through the shields, leaving the base defenseless against the superheated backwash from their engines. Anyone unfortunate enough to be caught outside would—at best—suffer horrific burns their scales were hopeless to deflect.

“Tactical display!” Berat called. If the horrific sight was affecting him this way, the effect on his crew had to be just as large, if not even bigger. Right now they needed their eyes to the sky.

Two-Çolurt, the Jem’Hadar cruiser that until now had been so certain they had dispatched the Sherouk, broke off its barrage against the Trager and angled towards the rising Gălor. Their reaction was slow, languidly circling in the air over its languishing prey before it dove for the carrion—a lazy maneuver even by their lumbering ship’s standards, no sense of urgency...

“They can’t see the Hide’eki!” Berat burst out—this was even more than he’d hoped for! “Do not signal the fighters until we open fire,” he ordered Dalin Rota. “Prepare for pattern Six-Thurhen!”

“They’ve just locked weapons!” Rota warned. “Polaron cannons charging—”

Fire!

The Sherouk lashed out with its full disruptor and phaser battery, bathing the Jem’Hadar ship in an ever-shifting array of frequencies in a technique the Cardassians had adapted from Federation anti-Borg tactics. Defending against phasers and disruptors simultaneously was difficult enough on the opposition, but this extra layer was sure to try even the finest Jem’Hadar crew. Each array fired according to its own pattern of random frequencies, depriving the target of its ability to fine-tune its shields to resist all parts of the onslaught. The only drawback was the strain it put on the Gălor’s power grid.

But Gul Berat didn’t have to keep up the multifrequency assault forever. It took only a second—if that—for the Hidekiy pilots to read the situation and swarm out from behind the Sherouk like a flock of angry thăv’ous mobbing a zerayd that threatened their chicks.

They swept over the Jem’Hadar ships in groups of three, each raking their disruptors across the battle cruisers’ shields. Even the whole swarm of them concentrated on one battle cruiser could hardly hope to destroy it—but they could go a long way towards hampering the Dominion ships’ maneuverability and drawing at least a little of their fire off of the four battle-scarred Gă’ălour.

And then the orbital drydock entered the fray.

To Berat’s eye, the station whose pylons wrapped around the new Gălor and the two Laghur-class cutters most resembled the skeletal ribcage of a quadrupedal animal held together by only the thinnest of ligatures. It was a far smaller and more delicate-looking affair than the Nor-class stations where he’d spent the first half of his career. The disruptor beams streaming from its six pylons, however, were far from delicate. True, they lacked the power of the Sherouk’s armaments, but the closer their approach, the more risk they posed.

Yet as they closed in…Berat noticed something off about their pattern of fire. Dalin Rota, however, voiced it first: “Someone on the station is with us! They’re aiming to miss!”

“Their shields?” Berat queried.

“Still at full power,” Rota replied.

So the rebellion doesn’t have a complete hold on the base, Gul Berat surmised. We’d better be quick about this before Gul Verest catches on to what his gunner is doing. For just a second, that gave Berat pause. Here he was, a servant of the Cardassian state, preparing to fire upon a fellow gul. True, Verest was a Dominion-appointed stooge who shouldn’t have even been a gul in the first place, but it ran against almost every instinct in his well-trained mind.

Except, of course, for the one that demanded the lives of traitors who sold their people out to foreign powers. Berat had been falsely accused of that once—and so he’d demanded of the other three guls of the Thirteenth Order a full investigation before they delivered the required sentence. They had taken covert observation from their allies at the base. They had the evidence. They had the incriminating transmissions, the observations of those around Verest and Uradnen…they knew.

“Rota—open a channel to the lead Hidekiy triad, and copy Glinn Topak in.”

“Channel open, gul. Topak on the Trager is monitoring.”

“Gul Berat to Lessek pilots—hear my orders and obey: you are to slave your controls over to the Sherouk at once and brace for Tamorh’ghevon maneuver!”

Tamorh’ghevon—shadow-sail: with all the substance of a shadow, the Hide’eki would simply slip through the drydock’s shields as if they weren’t even there.

It shouldn’t have been possible. Berat had hardly believed what he’d seen as he looked on when Glinn Motreln tore into the transporter system the Dominion team had installed on the Sherouk. Yan-pret Cardăsa-çăk! he’d exclaimed when he saw the device sitting there, meekly cooperative with the Gălor’s systems when by all rights it shouldn’t have been. For the love of Cardassia! Between Motreln’s scanner and that engineer’s chill up his spine that had nothing to do with temperature or neurological damage, he’d known even before she announced her verdict: it was an inverter.

He knew now how Dominion operatives came and went without a trace, how they beamed straight through the most powerful shields at impossible range. Rutian terrorists had tried and failed. The Science Ministry and the Obsidian Order, too, had tried their hand at space-folding transport, but never managed without killing or sickening their test subjects…who to Berat’s eternal disgust, had most often been Bajoran prisoners. On other occasions, Cardassian prisoners had been used. And, the worst rumor went, orphans and illegitimate children. Berat wasn’t entirely sure he believed that last one—but the mere idea chilled him nonetheless.

But this discovery, this unbelievable, functioning technology—what it would mean for Cardassia once rid of the Dominion—the implications were staggering.

If they rid Cardassia of the Dominion. For now, Berat’s sole concern was seeing the Hidekiy crews and his own ships through their next grueling maneuver—the in-atmosphere descent had nothing on this.

“Receiving telemetry now!” called Dalin Rota.

“Courses plotted,” seconded Cronath. “Uploading to the Hide’eki now!”

“Berat to transporter room three!”

Arvor here,” replied his longest-tenured transporter operator.

“Are you ready, Riyăk?”

Yes, Gul—all systems nominal, telemetry data within acceptable bounds.

“Then execute, Riyăk.”

And may Fate be by Spirit so guided, he willed as fervently as he could. He wasn’t a believer himself, but knew one quite well…enough so that her unorthodox turns of phrase when they spoke in private had started to creep into his interior monologue. Even though he was not Oralian, to even speak a believer’s words aloud might bring down a traitor’s sentence from a crew he’d already pushed almost to the limits of the Cardassian willingness to oppose the system.

Lights dimmed out aboard the Sherouk once more as all power save to the shield generators flooded into the Dominion transporters, and all but the most essential computer applications were suspended as the transporter buffer commanded all available memory and processors. Even the elliptical viewscreen at the front of the bridge flickered out and Gul Berat donned the Dominion headset the Vorta Dasreen had worn before his defeat.

Rota remotely lowered the attack shuttles’ shields.

In almost the same instant, the Jem’Hadar fired at both vessels, their aim preternaturally accurate.

And white pinpricks of light bathed the two Hide’eki.
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Old September 21 2009, 06:03 AM   #413
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

I have to say, the chapter was worth the wait! Glad to see you back to posting. The thought of Cardassia with that technology warms the cockles of my heart.
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Old September 21 2009, 06:20 AM   #414
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

That technology might be one of the only good things they have going for them, after the war is over! :-/

Glad you liked it!

(BTW...what's a cockle and how do you get it on your heart?)
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Old September 21 2009, 07:05 AM   #415
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

I could tell you, but then I'd have to get all Middle English on your butt.
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Old September 21 2009, 06:27 PM   #416
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Awww, come on! I wanna know!
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Old September 21 2009, 08:14 PM   #417
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

^Hell, I'm from England and I have no idea either

This is a good little chapter NG watching a keen Cardassian intellect at work is a wonderful sight.
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Old September 21 2009, 08:51 PM   #418
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Exciting little battle scene. I like the hiding shuttles. Very clever.
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Old September 22 2009, 12:07 AM   #419
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Berat's a very smart man; that's for sure! Anyone who counts him out because of his disability is going to end up in a world of hurt.

And glad you like!
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Old September 22 2009, 12:10 AM   #420
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Ah! The Cardassian resistance now has the Dominon's transporter technology, eh?

Nice--and it would be interesting to see how this affects the Balance of Power after the war's over....
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