Star Trek: Republic

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by MasterArminas, Mar 4, 2012.

  1. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-One (cont.)

    Voltanis shook his head. “I never believed that I would use my knowledge of the Arks to aid someone in attacking them, Second Speaker,” he sadly stated. “But in this case, I believe that you are correct.”

    The Nephkyrie Shipmaster laid a device on the table in Republic’s briefing room and he touched one side, causing a holographic display to spring into life over the device, rotating to show all surfaces of the Ark ships.

    “There are five separate transporter emitters on the outer surface of the hull of Ark Prime,” he continued as five blinking dots appeared. “Eliminate these and the primary transporters—the most powerful transporter units—will be disabled until repairs can be made. It was by combining all five of these emitters that Typhias was able to beam his boarding party across through your shields and inhibitor field. In addition, there are twenty-two secondary transporter emitters which are capable of delivering fusion warheads outside your shields.” And more blinking dots appeared.

    “Once the transporter emitters have been removed, you should be able to eliminate the weapons batteries that bear and close until your own transporters are within range. The central command compartment is located here,” he touched another section of the surface and the image transformed into an internal schematic and zoomed in to display a series of connected compartment deep within the ship’s hull.

    “From these compartments, the ship can be controlled, and the Speaker Prime and his retinue were housed immediately adjacent so that they could quickly be waked and consulted should the Shipmaster deem it necessary. There is an auxiliary control center here,” and the image moved quickly towards the stern, “which duplicates the controls of the central command compartment; it too must you take to gain control of Ark Prime.”

    The Nephkyrie Shipmaster shook his head. “And you must be fast. All of our Arks, you see, are outfitted with scuttling charges in the event that they were overrun by a hostile race. The Second Speaker has the overrides, but once they are activated you will have only three minutes to enter the codes before the charges detonate.”

    Matt nodded and he looked at his senior officers seated around the table. Captain Myers cleared his throat, and then he spoke up as the staff and their guests turned around to look at him. “How powerful are the charges, Shipmaster?”

    “Taken all together, seventeen point four of the units of explosive force you refer to as gigatons,” the Shipmaster said with a wry smile. “We did not want our technology to be looted and these were to serve as our parting gift to any who fought their way to victory.”

    For a moment there was only utter silence at the table, and then Chan shook his head. “That sounds simple enough. Three minutes should be more than sufficient time if Typhias’s children soldiers are representative of your ground combat technology.”

    Voltanis snorted, and Belagon shook his head. “Those were civilian arms and armor, meant only for self-defense that Typhias supplied to our children. Our military weapons, Commander Shrak, are far more deadly.”

    “To start,” interjected Voltanis, “each of our actual soldiers are clad from head to toe in combat armor that amplifies the strength of the wearer by an order of magnitude. This armor is designed to resist energy weapons fire by absorbing the energy, dissipating its effect. Having seen a demonstration of your weapons, I can assure you that our military grade armor will resist a single hit from your highest settings—once. It will take multiple high-power strikes to disable or kill a single one of our soldiers.”

    “In addition to carrying a hand weapon similar to that our children used against you, our soldier’s main weapon was a derivative of the transporter. It projects a beam that disperses the material composition of the target, literally beaming away into nothing the object that the beam strikes. Rather part of the object or target; it only affects approximately one-half of your cubic feet at a time. Further, our armor contains an integral inhibitor field meshed to the frequency of our weapons, as well as a pattern enhancer that allows our transporters to beam through shielded areas. Because of that, the weapon contains a secondary system that projects a disruption beam, similar to that of your phasers.”

    “Lovely,” muttered Lieutenant Beck. “So they can beam away our arms, legs, torsos, or heads, or hit us with the equal of Klingon disruptor rifles.”

    Belagon nodded. “Which is why I have already order Ark Two to wake our complement of soldiers—Typhias is our problem, and our soldiers will lead your assault, Captain Dahlgren.”

    Matt tapped his stylus against the table. “From what I have learned from my conversation with the Shipmaster here, your complement of actual soldiers is very small—not more than fifty per ship. Is that correct?”

    “It is.”

    “In which case, I must insist that you let us augment your assault force with our own personnel; the fate of the Federation colonists is my problem, Second Speaker.”

    Myers shifted in his seat, but he kept his mouth closed, as Chan glared at him.

    “If we are unsuccessful, Captain Dahlgren, your Federation will hold our race responsible for those deaths—and those of your crews. I beg of you, let us prove our worth in this instance.”

    “Second Speaker, the United Federation of Planets does not hold the crimes of an individual, or a small group of individuals, against an entire race. Speaking on behalf of the Federation, I promise you that regardless of the outcome, we will remove our colonists from New Columbia so that you may have your new home. And the Federation will offer to extend to you their hand in friendship and provide any assistance that you may need—our doctors and scientists aboard this ship are already working on finding a treatment for your genetic damage.”

    Voltanis sat back, barely breathing in surprise. But Belagon only met Matt’s eyes, and then he nodded. “Agreed. We have years in which my people will sleep before we reach the planet; so that discussion can be held later. But I am honored that you would treat with us fairly, after what Typhias has wrought.”

    Matt stood, and he winced with pain before he regained his composure. The two guests and the remaining Starfleet officers stood in response. “Second Speaker, Starfleet’s mission is to seek out new life, and new civilizations; to make peaceful contact and begin a dialogue between our different peoples. It is we who are honored to make First Contact with your civilization. Contact that I hope will be ongoing once you establish your colony.”

    Belagon bowed his head. “The Shipmaster and I will return to Ark Two, to prepare our men. It should not take more than hour.”

    “We will expect your return.”

    And with that, the two Nephkyrie exited the briefing room, escorted by away.

    Bill Myers turned around and laid both his hands on the table. “Captain Dahlgren, you can’t promise that—that is for the Council to decide!”

    “I can and I have. They laid claim to the planet first, Captain Myers. Would you rather we fight them?”

    “Of course not, but we can find them another planet! And this haphazard assault can go terribly wrong, Captain Dahlgren, Sir. People, our people, will die. We can wait for Independence, she’s just thirty-six hours out!”

    “And if Typhias starts to process, to distill, our people in the meantime, Captain Myers? No. We aren’t waiting. Thank you for your suggestions.”

    Bill opened his mouth again, and Matt interrupted him. “You are dismissed, Captain Myers. Make certain Arrogant is prepared.”

    “Assume your stations, people,” Matt finished, and his officers, along with the CO of USS Arrogant filed out.
  2. TheLoneRedshirt

    TheLoneRedshirt Commodore Commodore

    May 22, 2007
    Okay, I'm fully caught up now. This reads much like a Horatio Hornblower tale, lots of action, bravado and sheer bloody-mindedness. All in all, a very fun read!

    As much as I like Dahlgren and his efforts to instill morale in Republic's crew, I take issue with how he treated Captain Myers in a very public setting. Everything Dahlgren said was technically correct and I agree that Myers did not show proper respect and basically insulted Republic and her crew. All of that would have been avoided had the conversation taken place in private, per Myers' request.

    I get that Dahlgren wanted to make a point to (and apparently an example of) Captain Myers. But Dahlgren has done to Myers what others have done to Republic. He has publicly ridiculed a starship captain in front of his own bridge crew and the entire complement of Republic. Then he in effect threatened him with murder. A duel? Wow. (Although I kind of like the idea. ;))

    If this is the Starfleet with which I'm familiar, there will be serious repercussions.

    Okay, I got that out of my system. It's a great story and I am thoroughly enjoying it. But I wish you would go ahead and cut off Dahlgren's leg and strap on a wooden peg for the full effect. And instead of the sword, how 'bout a cutlass? :devil:

    The man is a bad-ass, no doubt.
  3. CeJay

    CeJay Commodore Commodore

    Feb 5, 2006
    I kinda have to agree with Myers in the last segment, that's an awfully big promise to make. I agree with it, of course but what if Command, the Council or even the president overrule Dahlgren? That would make a liar out of him.

    TLR makes a good point, too. That conversation should have been had in private but I think the other captain should have shown more restraint when he knew he was on an open channel. He was definitely out of line. The crew reaction to Dahlgren's response was brilliant though.
  4. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-One (cont.)

    “End program,” snarled Erwin Beck, and the computer in Holodeck One obediently reverted back to its normal configuration. “This isn’t a game, Marines!” he snapped. “We have the exact deck plans of the target; we have a perfect simulation of the environment; we have better intelligence on the capabilities of these Nephkyrie than we ever had on the Jem’Hadar; and you people are still moving too slowly!”

    “One hundred and fifty seconds from the moment we beam in is all the time we can count on, Marines. Because one second after that we are all dead! The colonists are dead! Those Nephkyrie children press-ganged into soldiers are dead!”

    Erwin ran his hand through the thinning hair atop of his head. “We have to cut our way to the command consoles where the deactivation codes can be entered—and those codes have to be entered to stop the count-down. That means if Parker or Karalis get hit, one of you has to take their place! Why do you think I gave each of you the code? Winning the fire-fight is for after we stop that bloody bomb from going off, Marines!”

    “Do you get me?”

    “WE GET YOU, SIR!” a ragged chorus of voices answered.

    “And you Starfleet Security personnel had best get your act together! I know that your training included close-quarters combat drills, so get the lead out of your pants and move!”

    One of Arrogant’s security officer muttered something, and Beck briskly walked across the deck until he was nose to nose with the officer.

    “You have something to add, Jenkins? What was that that you said?”

    “We’re doing our best, Lieutenant; that’s what I said! We’ve never trained for this Marine sh- . . . stuff.”

    “God, I hope not; because if that is your best, Jenkins, then we are totally screwed and twelve thousand Federation colonists will lose their lives!”

    Erwin took a step back and put his hands on his hips. “It isn’t fair that the Old Man pulled your asses off of Arrogant and Balao; it isn’t fair that you are beaming aboard a deathtrap to stop a maniac from killing himself and forty-seven thousand innocent people! It isn’t fair that your training means in this instance you are quite likely to die! Get over that! The universe isn’t fair! No, this isn’t your normal away mission, and this isn’t about protecting a Starfleet vessel from hostile boarders; this is about saving the lives of people who can’t defend themselves! And if you think that is something only for Starfleet Marines, Jenkins, then you are a sorry excuse for a crewman and perhaps you need to rethink your career choice!”

    “Run it again, and get it right this time! Computer, run Ark Prime Assault from the top!” Beck shouted as he exited the Holodeck and reentered the adjacent compartment where he was observing the drill.
  5. TheLoneRedshirt

    TheLoneRedshirt Commodore Commodore

    May 22, 2007
    The clock is ticking. Beck best get these Marines and Security grunts motivated or this story will come to a sad and sudden halt. :scream:

    Good stuff!
  6. CeJay

    CeJay Commodore Commodore

    Feb 5, 2006
    Gosh, everyone on this ship is a hard-nossed son-of-a-gun, huh? Well I suppose the guy in charge of the Marines better be, or this mission will fail before it has even begun.
  7. TrekkieMonster

    TrekkieMonster Commodore Premium Member

    Jul 9, 2001
    The Hub of the Universe
    Okay, wow. I've just gotten caught up on this, and I have to say, well done. You've created interesting and compelling characters and given us intriguing situations .... I'm totally hooked. I do agree somewhat with TheLoneRedshirt, in that some of Dahlgren's behavior may not fit neatly into the Trekverse we all know from the screen, but I personally have no problem seeing taking this as your own take on your own version of the Trekverse. Heck, I'd love to see a Trek duel. LOL! Oh, and somewhat in that vein, I have to say that I also got a very strong "Horatio Hornblower" vibe, which I presume was intentional. Very much looking forward to seeing where you take us with this.

    Tally Ho! ;)
  8. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-One (cont.)

    Matt flinched as Quincy gentled probed the swollen flesh. The surgeon frowned and he ran a tricorder over the inflamed thigh and shook his head. “I was afraid of this, Matt,” he said quietly. “The bone is infected again. Luckily, we caught it early this time.”

    “Just give me the shot, Quincy,” Matt said through clenched teeth. “I’ve got to get back on the bridge.”

    “Matt, the Ladoculkaine VII is what’s causing this; it stopped the pain, but it has also suppressed your immune system, which is why the infection has flared up so quickly. I can’t risk giving you another dose. It’s one of the known side-effects of the drug, but only in about twenty percent of cases; I’d hoped we would get lucky and avoid this complication.”

    “So what are our options, Doctor?” Matt growled.

    “We fight the infection—and you’ve got to face reality here, Matt. We are approaching the point where that leg has to come off,” Quincy’s voice trailed off, and then he grimaced. “Or we try something radical and unproven.”

    The surgeon pressed a hypospray against the thigh and it hissed as he injected the tissue with a powerful compound to fight the infection. Matt flinched.

    “How radical?”

    “Dr. Woolsey has suggested that we attempt a Klingon procedure known as an inverse replication transplant. Basically, we scan your good leg, invert it to match your bad leg, and replicate the tissue. And then we go in and cut away the bad and attach the good. The problem is that it has never been performed on a human subject, Matt. It works on Klingons because of their redundant physiology, but has never been used on their limbs. It is used to restore damaged internal organs, primarily.”

    “How long would it take?”

    “It’s major surgery, Matt. We are talking twelve hours for the actual procedure, and you will be in bed for three or four more days afterwards, if not a week. If it works. If it doesn’t, then the leg will have to removed completely, and we will have to look at a prosthetic or an organic replacement.”

    “Quincy, I can’t spare that kind of time at this moment!”

    “I know. We’ve got a few days for you to make up your mind, Matt, but the pain is going to get worse. I’ll put this off until after you deal with the Nephkyrie, but then I want you on my table, Captain. And if the infection spreads, it won’t matter how busy you are or how much you are needed; I’ll relieve you and haul your ass down to sickbay for the procedure.”

    “I can live with that.”

    “You can die with that if the bone turns septic, Captain. I can give you one of your old pain meds, but . . .”

    “But, they cloud my thinking. I’ll manage, Quincy.”

    The surgeon nodded and he closed his medical bag. “I’m sorry, Matt. I thought the Ladoculkaine VII would give you time to heal.”

    “Not your fault, Quincy. Help me up, would you?”

    The old doctor bent down, and Matt placed an arm around his shoulder, and together the two men got the Captain back to his feet. “And before you tell me, I am planning on staying in my chair.”

    “Glory hallelujah. He does have some common sense, after all,” the doctor snorted as Matt pulled up trousers and fastened them.

    Bridge to Captain Dahlgren,” the intercom announced.

    “Go ahead,” Matt said as he tapped his comm badge, then took his cane from Quincy.

    Sir, everyone is in position and ready to begin,” Chan said.

    “Very well, Mister Shrak. Sound Red Alert; I am on my way to the bridge. Dahlgren out.”

    Matt took two limping steps to the door and then he turned around. “And you best get to sickbay, Quincy.”

    “Hah. After, I escort you to the bridge, Matt. Don’t want you to fall over in the turbolift and have to call for assistance in getting back up.”
  9. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Thank you Trekkie Monster. I am glad that all of you are enjoying the story. I wasn't really thinking of the old Hornblower series when I wrote this, but I am not surprised that some of that comes through; I loved those books in my youth.

    Master Arminas
  10. TheLoneRedshirt

    TheLoneRedshirt Commodore Commodore

    May 22, 2007
    The surgical procedure sounds risky but it seems like Dahlgren's best hope to keep his leg. A bio-synthetic prosthetic would be a viable option but it might have a steep learning curve to adapt to it.

    Hope the leg bone doesn't go septic at a particularly critical point. Captain Dahlgren might find himself on a table rather than his chair despite his protests.

    The pain Dahlgren faces and how he copes adds an interesting layer to the character. Usually we see injuries handled in a near-miraculous manner in 24th century Trek stories. Glad to see themes of suffering and perseverance in your story. They add depth. :bolian:
  11. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-One (cont.)

    “Mister Shrak,” Matt asked as he took his seat on the bridge. “Is the ship prepared for action?”

    “She is indeed, Captain Dahlgren. Arrogant and Balao are standing by as well.”

    “Very good. Inform Captains Carmichael and Myers that we will execute the operation in one minute from . . . mark.”

    Matt pressed a stud on the arm of his chair and a count-down timer appeared over the main viewing screen. He took a moment to rotate his chair and look over each of the men and women who manned his bridge, Republic’s bridge. They were a far cry from the demoralized and unhappy officers and crew who had first boarded the ship not too many months before. He nodded with approval as each went through their duties with quiet confidence; calm and collected with the own sense of worth.

    He completed his rotation and faced the main viewer once more, as the timer slowly ticked down towards zero.

    “Miss Montoya . . . EXECUTE!” he snapped.

    Republic raced forward, crossing the light-speed barrier and she soared through space before she dropped to sub-light speeds once more, her phasers immediately spitting golden beams of energy at Ark Prime.

    Explosions racked the surface of the Nephkyrie vessel as the transporter emitters on the outer hull erupted in balls of fire; Arrogant and Balao adding their own fury. Ark Prime’s weapons came on-line, and pulses of red-shifted lasers and bright blue-white phase cannon bolts tore through space to strike home against the shields of all three ships.

    “Primary and secondary emitter arrays are disabled, Captain Dahlgren,” Shrak called out.

    Matt opened a comm channel. “Mister Malik, drop the inhibitor field. Mister Beck, you may begin boarding operations. Shield status, Mister Shrak?”

    “Eighty-three percent; numerous hits.”

    “Mister Roshenko, eliminate those weapon batteries.”

    Isabella corkscrewed the ship through a series of evasive maneuvers, and more phaser beams ripped out from Republic’s strips, each one connecting against a laser or phase cannon emplacement.


    Erwin materialized in the depths of the Nephkyrie Ark amid a raging firefight of phaser beams, transporter weapons, and disruptor blasts. He dove for cover and armed a stun grenade, then hurled it in the direction of the heavily armored Nephkyrie shock troopers. Erwin winced as one of his Marines took a direct hit from the transporter beam weapons, his scream of agony cut on as his upper chest and throat dissolved, before the corpse collapsed to the deck, its feet twitching, and hot blood gushed out to cover the deck plates.

    Well-trained troops, confident in their armor’s ability to dissipate the energy, would have ignored the grenade and continued firing: Typhias’s minions were not well-trained. They dove for the deck as the grenade detonated, sending a pulse of stun energy harmless cascading across their armor.

    But Beck’s Marines and Voltanis’s security personnel were already moving in, firing pulse after pulse of disruptor and phaser energy into the prone targets. Private Karalis was already at the central command facilities control panel and he entered the long code that Belagon had given him.

    Auxiliary control secured,” a Marine reported over Erwin’s comm. “The kids are counter-attacking, LT!

    “Understood. Hold your position,” Erwin answered. “Stun settings only.”

    The Efrosian Private completed entering the final sequence and he pressed the acceptance button, but the machine just beeped twice, and Nephkyrie numerals continued to scroll across the screen. One the Nephkyrie security personnel cursed. “Typhias has altered the command codes!”

    “Beck to Republic,” Erwin snapped as he hit his comm badge, fresh beams of energy coming into the control room as the Nephkyrie children began attacking here as well. “We’ve got a problem.”


    “Time to detonation, Mister Shrak?” Matt asked with a chill running down his spine.

    “Two minutes, fourteen seconds, mark,” the Andorian answered.

    Matt nodded. “Open all-ship’s all-hand’s frequency. Initiate emergency action plan—all transporters beam those scuttling charges out of the ship. Don’t waste time getting locks, just beam them out and disperse them!”

    “Captain!” Pavel Roshenko called out. “One of the Nephkyrie shuttlecraft—five hundred and fifty meters overall length—has exited Ark Prime; it just entered Warp on a heading to New Columbia.”

    Typhias,” Matt growled. “We’ll deal with him later, concentrate on getting those . . .”

    GELAK COR!” yelled Chan from Mission Ops, then he shook his head and turned to look down at Matt, who startled at the sudden explosion of Andorian curses had rotated his chair. “Arrogant just went into pursuit, Captain Dahlgren. She beamed her security people back aboard and has now entered Warp.”

    “Hail them!” Matt snapped, and he turned back around to the main viewer as Captain Myers appeared on screen. “Return to station immediately, Captain!’

    “And let this criminal go? No, Captain Dahlgren. You and Republic have gotten enough of our people killed today; I will capture the man who began this.”

    The screen cut off, and Matt started to swear; he stopped, clenched a fist, and slammed it against the arm of his command chair. “Status on those charges?”

    “One hundred and seventeen removed, Captain,” answered Amanda from the science station as her hands flew across the console, tagging individual charges for the transporter rooms to beam into deep space, “two hundred and forty-four remaining.”

    “Time to detonation?”

    “One minute, twenty-two seconds, mark,” answered Chan.

    Matt pressed the stud that opened that opened the ship’s intercom. “Any personnel not essential to operations get to a shuttle or the ship’s gig and power up those transporters; tie them into the bridge Science stations for control.” Matt cut the intercom and rotated back to Shrak. “Mister Shrak, order Balao . . .”

    “Both of Balao’s shuttles have begun transport, along with all twelve of Republic’s shuttles and the gig, Captain Dahlgren.”

    Matt nodded, and he made himself sit back. “Status?” he asked after a few moments.

    “Forty-one seconds mark; one hundred and one charges remaining.”

    Matt closed his eyes; he could hear Amanda Tsien, Grace Biddle, Pavel Roshenko, and Chan Shrak issuing orders as they assigned transporters on the spot to each charge after the next. He pulled up the schematics of Ark Prime on his arm-mounted display, and he saw the blinking strobes of the explosive charges vanishing rapidly; Republic moving to the stern, and Balao moving forward.


    “Eight seconds, fifteen charges remaining, mark.”

    Last one!” shouted Amanda, as the display over the viewer ticked down to one. “It’s in the matter stream!

    And the display hit zero.

    Republic shuddered as the high-yield fusion device detonated within the matter stream, and then the dim red lighting flickered, and control panels exploded with the backlash of energy as the plasma conduits that fed power to them overloaded.

    Matt started to bark a command, and then there was a flash of light—he screamed in agony as his leg was twisted by the explosion that flipped his chair. And then all went dark.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
  12. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-One (cont.)

    Chris grunted as Republic bucked violently beneath him. The instrumentation and control panels in Deflector Control were sparking and smoking as the young Ensign worked desperately to rearrange the isolinar chips. “Chief, link the primary, second, and tertiary systems together—they have to handle the power!”

    They have to, Chris thought as he wiped the sweat from his forehead. He slid the last chip back into place, and the deflector began to power up. “We’re up!” he shouted.

    Chief Bronson grunted in answer as he punched in commands into his own control unit, ducking as another station exploded with the barely contained fury of the cascading energy ripping through the ship’s plasma power conduits. “Deflector ready for firing, Mister Roberts! I hope you know what you are doing, Sir!”

    Chris swallowed; he had read about the tactic that Enterprise used when she attempted to stop the Borg before Wolf-359, but although he had gone over the steps of how it could be done in exercises, he had before actually done it. He licked his dry lips. “On three, Chief Bronson, trigger the pulse—but maintain it until the power levels drop to normal or the system burns out. One.” Chris wiped away the sweat again as Republic rocked under another internal explosion. “Two.” Oh God, let this work, he quickly prayed. “THREE!” He yelled as he slapped the panel controls to life.

    Bronson triggered the Deflector Dish, and the ship began to shudder and shiver and shake as an extremely loud hum filled the compartment. Chris looked up and out of the armored glass panel and he squinted in pain as a searing blue-white beam of incredible energy shot forward, extending deep into empty space.

    “Power levels are falling, Mister Roberts! Three hundred percent normal maximum load, two hundred and twenty percent; one seventeen, eighty-four!”

    “Shut it down!” Chris yelled as ripped out the control chip and the energy beam died away.

    Smoke rose from all of the instrumentation, and the young officer could taste the ozone of the burnt polymers and plates. He turned around, and he looked at the older Chief Petty Officer, who was slowly nodding. “Plasma relay systems at seventy-four percent of rated capacity, Mister Roberts. We managed to dump a good portion of the energy, Sir.”

    A rasping cough came from the other end of the compartment, and Crewman Thompson spoke up. “Dish is off-line, Mister Roberts. We’ve got warning lights on all the systems; we’re dead in the water.”

    Chris nodded, and then an alert siren began to blare, and a blue strobe light began to flash. “Hull breach! Evacuate the compartment! Chief, give me a head count!”

    He could hear a whistling noise that was growing louder, and Chris hurriedly glanced beneath consoles and under debris; then he saw the seam of the hull plating start to split open—and the black of space behind it. Oh shit, he thought, and he closed his eyes expecting to be pulled out through the fracture.

    But then a strong hand clamped on his forearm, and Chief Bronson yanked him towards the exit, his other hand firmly clasped by two of the crewmen. Together, the four of them fought the growing gale of winds fighting against them, until they crossed the threshold and Bronson slapped the manual override, dropping the blast door into place and sealing off the breach from the rest of the ship.

    Two engineers ran down the corridor towards them, carrying medical equipment and emergency tools. They passed around an oxygen bottle to each of Chris’s people, and the Ensign gave them a thumbs-up.

    He took a low pull of the oxygen, and slowly his heart began to wind down its frantic race. Chris shook his head and started to grin. “Well that’s two hull breaches in Deflector Control on this tour, Chief. If we have a third do we get a prize?”

    “If we get a third, Mister Roberts, I’m putting in my retirement papers.”
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2012
  13. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Yes, those are both good points, and I may have to clean up the conversation a little bit. Matt knew (through Samantha Carmichael and the intra-ship gossip grapevine) just how Myers felt about being subordinated to Matt and (especially) Republic. He didn't want to discuss the matter privately until after they dealth with Typhias, and he actually hoped that Myers would have the sense to dial it back on a live broadcast. He didn't know Chan piped it through the entire ship, however!

    We see a lot of officers similar to Myers in Star Trek: Styles (ST III: The Search for Spock), all those Commodores who tried to take command of Enterprise in TOS, some of the Captains in TNG and DS9 as well. I asked, how would Styles have reacted finding out that he was junior to an officer commanding the 'disgraced' Republic?

    And you are right, there will be complications later on because of Matt's own words; he can't be given just a slap on the wrist for threatening to challenge another Star Fleet Captain to a duel. Especially if Ambassador Mar has anything to say about it.

    Thanks to all of you for your comments and suggestions; I do read them all.

    Master Arminas
  14. Gibraltar

    Gibraltar Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Sep 25, 2005
    US Pacific Northwest
    Just up to the point where Republic has been dispatched on it's first post-Gorn mission. Dahlgren has been stern and unforgiving, but that's what was needed to straighten this crew out. Here's where we see the effort on his part (and theirs) has paid off.

    Terrific stuff!
  15. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-Two

    “Sir, we are being by hailed by Independence. Captain Salok is asking to speak with the Captain.”

    “On screen, Miss Biddle,” Chan Shrak answered calmly.

    The main viewer flickered, it filled with static, and then it cleared to reveal the regal Vulcan seated in his command chair.

    “Commander Shrak? I asked to speak with Captain Dahlgren.”

    “Sir, Captain Dahlgren is in surgery at the moment,” the Andorian answered.

    Salok arched an eyebrow in response. “Surgery? Why wasn’t I notified?”

    “Captain Salok, we knew that your ship was making her best time already; you could not have arrived any sooner if we had hailed you. Fourteen hours ago, we secured the Nephkyrie vessel in a joint assault from Republic, Balao, Arrogant, and a contingent of Nephkyrie troops from Ark Two. Typhias had altered the command codes of Ark Prime, however, and we were forced into beaming away from Ark Prime the individual scuttling charges—a task made more difficult by Arrogant breaking away to pursue Typhias as he fled.”

    “I am aware of those facts, Commander Shrak; Commander Carmichael kept me informed of the situation while Independence was en route. Why was I not so informed of Captain Dahlgren’s medical emergency?”

    “You have my apologies, Captain Salok; I had assumed that Commander Carmichael would have, as senior officer on station, informed you. Captain Dahlgren was injured when we beamed away the final charge—a charge already initiating detonation. The transporter absorbed the energy of that fusion explosion directly into the matter stream, and proved far too intense for the buffer to contain. The feedback overloaded every plasma power conduit on the ship, sparking internal explosions and two separate hull breaches. Captain Dahlgren suffered a concussion and additional damage to his already wounded leg.”

    Salok nodded. “Very well. When will Captain Dahlgren’s surgery be complete?”

    “We do not yet know, Captain Salok. He has been in surgery for over twelve hours so far.”

    “And you have assumed command of Republic, Commander Shrak?”

    “I have, Sir.”

    “Your status?”

    “Warp engines remain off-line, along with impulse engines. We were on emergency reserve power until two hours ago when Commander Malik managed to get a single generator up and running. Our casualties include seventeen dead and forty-four wounded—including the Captain. Structural integrity field is off-line, shields are down, weapons are inoperative, our sensors are inoperative, the main Deflector Dish is damaged beyond the repair of onboard spare parts. Long-range communications are down as well, but all decks now have gravity and life support restored.”

    “I see. I notice that Arrogant is not appearing on my long-range scans, Commander Shrak. Has she not returned?”

    “No, Sir. And neither we nor Balao have received any answer to our hails.”

    “Odd,” the Vulcan mused as he folded his hands together. “Independence will arrive on station in forty-two minutes, Commander Shrak. Does Republic require assistance?”

    Chan grimaced, and his antennae shrunk, but then he slowly nodded his head. “We would be grateful, Sir.”

    “And the situation on Ark Prime?”

    “Speaker Belagon has arranged a cease-fire with the Nephkyrie children that are not in stasis. His . . . presence has been a stabilizing factor that put an end to the hostilities very quickly. However, Ark Prime suffered heavy damage in our assault; inadvertent damage resulting from beaming away the charges and the surrounding sections of the vessel without a proper transporter lock. They are losing power and will have to evacuate the ship within the next three days. Detachments from Republic and Balao are assisting the Speaker and Shipmaster Voltanis in powering up the eleven shuttles,” and Chan chuckled, shaking his head at that word.”

    “Is something humorous, Commander?” the Vulcan asked.

    “Captain Salok, Ark Prime—each of their Arks—carries a dozen shuttlecraft the size of a Nebula-class starship. They are capable of reaching speeds of up to Warp 6 for limited periods of time; but even with all eleven and our own shuttles, it will require two round trips for them to evacuate all of the Nephkyrie children and our own colonists in stasis. The cargo carried will require an additional ten round trips.”

    “So they are warp-capable then; the Prime Directive was not violated, as Captain Myer’s reports suggested.”

    “I haven’t seen those reports, Captain Salok, so I cannot comment upon them,” Chan answered in a clipped manner.

    “Why then weren’t their Arks equipped with warp drives of their own? Why generational sleeper ships?”

    Chan nodded. “That is a question that we asked Voltanis and Belagon ourselves; the answer being dilithium, Captain Salok. Or rather a lack thereof. Their home system and none of the systems they had explored contained dilithium reserves of any note; so their warp drives are more primitive, energy intensive, and slower systems that rapidly deplete their onboard supplies of fuel. If their ships had been Warp capable with their current technology, they would have run out of fuel and power less than a third of the way into the voyage.”

    “That explains the matter,” the Vulcan calmly answered. “I will presume that you and Commander Carmichael are planning on moving the Nephkyrie and our own colonists from this vessel to New Columbia?”

    “We are. It is the closest class-M planet, well within the limited range of their Warp drives. Close enough, in fact, that the . . . shuttles,” and Chan’s antennae twitched, “will be able to make at least six round trips to retrieve needed pre-fabricated buildings and essential supplies from Ark Prime’s cargo holds. Shipmaster Voltanis has already sent a message to Ark Two and Ark Three, each of which are preparing to launch their own shuttles to join the children of Ark Prime on New Columbia; those shuttles will have Nephkyrie adults aboard to handle the assimilation of the Ark Prime children back into Nephkyrie society.”

    The Vulcan nodded once. “Starfleet Command will be dispatching a transport capable of evacuating the New Columbia colonists; although there are several members of the Federation Council who wish to have a word with Captain Dahlgren over his . . . usurpation of their authority in this matter.”

    “Actually, Captain Salok, it might be not necessary to evacuate New Columbia. Speaker Belagon and Shipmaster Voltanis have indicated that they intend to settle a different continental land-mass. They have agreed to allow the colonists to remain in place; and Speaker Belagon wishes to send an Emissary to meet with the Federation Council. He hopes that through the collaboration of our scientists and medical professionals that together we can find a successful treatment for the genetic damage his people are suffering from.”

    The Vulcan raised one eyebrow. “Indeed. Given your own—quite heavy—damage to Republic, I believe that I will request that USS Portsmouth be diverted to New Columbia. Unless, of course, that you object to having a yard-ship on hand to assist in your repairs, Commander?”

    “No objections, Captain Salok. Not a single one,” answered Chan with a smile.

    “Very good, Commander Shrak; we shall arrive on station in . . . thirty-eight minutes, Commander. I will beam aboard Republic upon my arrival to survey the damage and speak with both you and Commander Carmichael in person. And then we can begin the talks with Speaker Belagon and the Nephkyrie people. Continue your preparations on readying those shuttlecraft for space, Commander. Independence out.”

    The screen flickered and then died. Chan put both his hands behind his back and he turned to face Amanda Tsien, seated behind him at her science station—one of the few that hadn’t exploded.

    “Any word on the Captain, Miss Tsien?” he asked softly. And she shook her head. Chan nodded. “I will be in my office should there be an emergency, Miss Tsien. You have the conn,” he finished as his antennae twitched once more. What’s left of it, he thought.
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2012
  16. CeJay

    CeJay Commodore Commodore

    Feb 5, 2006
    So all is well that ends well. At least for our alien friends. Dahlgren is not in the clear yet both medically as well as professionally.

    He's a tough son of a gun, so I'm sure he's gonna land hopefully on his own feet.
  17. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-Two (cont.)

    Matt heard a low whisper of voices, and he shook off the fog of his sleep, forcing his eyes open . . . and then he remembered. He sat up suddenly, but he wasn’t on the bridge; he was in sickbay.

    “Ah, the sleeper wakes,” Dr. Woolsey said pleasantly as the hologram walked across the ward and placed a realistic feeling hand on the Captain’s forehead. “And here I thought you were going to just keep sleeping, Captain Dahlgren. No fever, that’s good.”

    Matt started to speak, but his dry throat caused him to cough instead and Robert Woolsey picked up a covered cup with a straw and held it Matt’s lips. “Drink,” he ordered. “Slowly . . . easy . . . that’s enough.”

    He sat down the cup and glared down at the Captain. “Are we feeling better, now?”

    Matt coughed. “The ship?”

    “Is fine. Well, not exactly fine, but doing well. For a given definition of well. If you consider having no shields, no weapons, no sensors, no impulse drive, and no warp drive well. We do have internal life support and gravity, so better than we could be.”

    Matt threw back the sheets, and looked down at his bare legs peeking out from beneath a green hospital gown. “Where are my clothes, Doctor? I need to get to the bridge.”

    Robert shook his head and pulled the sheets back up. “The situation is well in hand and I want to keep you here under observation for a while longer.”

    Matt pushed them off again and swung his legs over the side of the bed. But then he stopped. His leg didn’t hurt. He pulled up the gown and examined the bare thigh beneath it—no scar tissue.

    “You and Quincy both are knife-hungry sadists,” he snarled. “I said after we dealt with the Nephkyrie!”

    Quincy’s voice rang out from the doorway. “Didn’t have a choice, Matt. The bone shattered when your chair flipped after that explosion on the bridge. Gave you one hell of a concussion and it twisted your leg until the bone gave way under the strain. At least you were unconscious and unable to argue,” the chief medical officer finished with a shrug.

    “I need to get . . .”

    “Well, Captain. You need to get well. However, I think that the inverse replication transplant suggested by my colleague here has taken off quite well. That and the seventy-two hours I’ve kept you unconscious.”

    SEVENTY-TWO HOURS!” Matt snapped at he jumped onto his feet.

    “I did warn you,” Robert said to Quincy. “I said that he would not like being put into a coma; although it did give him a chance to heal. And I believe that takes higher priority than the Captain’s desires.”

    “You did, but it is a prerogative of the chief medical officer of starship. Whose medical opinion overrides the orders of said starship’s commanding officer,” Quincy said as he unfolded his arms and examined the sensor readings from the diagnostics bed. “Everything looks good, Matt. We just have a few tests to run and then you will be released.”

    “Quincy, I need to speak with Chan and Captain Salok is already here and . . .”

    “Both of them are on the way to Sickbay, Matt. So shut up, open your mouth, stick out your tongue, and say AAH. While Robert here goes ahead and takes a blood sample.”
  18. Gibraltar

    Gibraltar Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Sep 25, 2005
    US Pacific Northwest
    I just finished the first segment of this book where Republic completes the assignment to the Cauldron.

    Dahlgren’s decision to use force to destroy the alien artifacts and the replicators was ballsy, especially given the tenuous diplomatic situation within the Cauldron. I don’t disagree with his actions, but he took a big gamble, especially in taking on a powerful Klingon battlecruiser manned by Ordan’s thralls. He’s damned lucky Phoenix arrived when it did.

    I’m pleased to see the inquiry was mostly a formality, but here’s hoping Republic’s missions are a bit easier from here on out. I won’t hold my breath, though. :lol:

    Damn fine storytelling! :bolian:
  19. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-Two (cont.)

    “. . . and so we should have impulse power restored within the hour, Captain Dahlgren, along with shields and the structural integrity field generators. Independence will tow us into New Columbia orbit and will remain as we complete the repairs we are able to accomplish for ourselves. Portsmouth is scheduled to arrive in twelve days, and she will perform the tasks for which we are not equipped,” Chan finished.

    “And the Nephkyrie? What have you decided to do with them, Captain Salok?” Matt asked from the diagnostic bed.

    “Speaker Belagon and I have had quite fruitful discussions. I have assured him that the Federation will not abandon his people and will assist his own medical specialists and scientists in searching for a treatment for their genetic disorders. The colonists from New Columbia are . . . they are taking the entire matter far better than I would have expected, given their racial makeup. For the most part, they were beamed directly into stasis by Typhias and were not even aware of having been abducted or of the passage of time. Their leaders, however, have agreed to share the planet with the Nephkyrie.”

    The Vulcan cocked an eyebrow. “The Federation is sending an Ambassador to conclude a formal agreement with Speaker Belagon, however. And that delegation has expressed a wish to speak with you as well, Captain Dahlgren. They will not be arriving for at least two months, though, so you should have ample time to complete your repairs once Portsmouth arrives on station.”

    “And Captain Myers? His actions directly led to Republic’s current condition, Captain Salok.”

    The Vulcan paused, and Chan’s antennae shrank slightly. “We located the remains of Arrogant yesterday, Captain Dahlgren. The emergency buoy ejected just before the ship was destroyed. The bridge recorder indicates that Captain Myers did intercept Typhias and that he forced him out of warp. He then prepared to beam aboard his own security forces and secure the vessel; upon dropping his inhibitor field, Typhias transporter several warheads aboard the Arrogant—there were no survivors. The Nephkyrie shuttle is comprised of the same hull material as their Arks, making long-range sensors useless in detecting his vessel. As a precaution, I have dispatched Balao to New Columbia in case that Typhias decides upon a scorched earth policy in regards to the colony.”

    Matt nodded slowly. “I see. And his reports? I am aware that he filed several with you . . . indicating his displeasure with my actions.”

    Salok’s expression did not change. “For the most part, his complaints were petty and emotional biased; you perhaps did not realize that two of his siblings and their families had settled on Omicron Cygnii II.”

    Matt winced.

    “It was nothing personal, I am certain, Captain Dahlgren,” the Vulcan continued calmly. “Any officer commanding this starship, with its history and . . . involvement in the destruction of that colony, would have provoked much the same reaction, I believe. His more serious charges, that you violated the Prime Directive by initiating contact with Ark Two were baseless. Not only do the Nephkyrie on that vessel possess warp technology, but they provided the information that allowed you to retrieve the colonists without losing one of their number. It is my intention, at this time, to fully endorse your actions. I have already submitted a preliminary report to Admiral Parker at Starfleet Command.”

    “Admiral Hansen concurs with my assessment. Of course, politics being what they are in today’s Starfleet,” and the Vulcan’s mouth twisted in a rare showing of mild distaste. “Command has decided that the details of the loss of Arrogant would be counter-productive to the morale of Starfleet and the Federation. Accordingly, she was—officially—destroyed while assisting you and Balao in beaming out the suicide charges from Ark Prime. Captain Myers reports have been sealed and filed away.”

    Dr. Talbot walked back into the ward where Chan and Salok stood over Matt’s bed. “The final test results came back, Captain Dahlgren. I hereby pronounce you well enough. You are cleared to resume duty; light duty, for now, if you please, Sir. Don’t make me ask Captain Salok to make it an order,” Quincy said with a smile.

    The Vulcan raised an eyebrow. “And I most certainly would order it if you surgeon requested, Captain Dahlgren.”

    “I surrender, gentlemen. Light duty it is. Thank you, Captain Salok.”

    “Gratitude is not necessary, Captain Dahlgren. I only did my duty according to my oath of commission. From the evidence available to me, not only of your actions here with the Nephkyrie but from the incident in the Cauldron, I can only conclude that duty was what drove you as well.”

    “Captain Dahlgren, Commander Shrak,” he continued. “I will leave several work parties from Independence aboard this ship until your repairs are complete—or I am forced by other duties to leave orbit. Good day, gentlemen.”

    And with that, the Vulcan turned on his heel and exited the sickbay.

    Matt pulled off the sheet and he stood up from the bed. “Okay, Quincy. So where are my pants?”

    “You do realize that we had to cut your pants off of you, Captain?” the doctor said with a smirk. “But I have already informed Yeoman Sinclair and she is . . . here,” he finished as the doors opened the Captains yeoman walked in carrying a neatly folded uniform, a set of underwear, a pair of socks, and freshly polished boots.
  20. MasterArminas

    MasterArminas Commander Red Shirt

    Dec 22, 2011
    Chapter Twenty-Two (cont.)

    “Come!” Matt snarled as the chime rang. He remained facing the mirror set over the sink in the lavatory adjacent to his main cabin as he heard the door slide open. Finally, the clasp in the collar of his dress white shirt slid into place. Matt smoothed it down and he walked out into the cabin, to find his senior officers standing there, alongside of one additional Lieutenant. Like the Captain, each of the department heads were also clad in their dress uniform; although all of them (unlike the Captain) were completely dressed.

    “Mister Shrak. I take it there is a reason that my staff has assembled here?” Matt asked as he lifted the white jacket and slid it on, giving it a good stiff tug to seat the shoulders properly.

    The Andorian’s antennae leaned forward. “There is indeed, Captain Dahlgren. On behalf of the officers and crew, Sir, we would like to present to you a gift.”

    “A gift? For working you until you were ready to drop? For pushing you to your limits? Gentlemen, ladies; that was a gift in and of itself.”

    “For making us stand tall, Captain Dahlgren; for forcing us to remember why we joined Starfleet in the first place,” said the Counselor. “You made us better than we were, Sir. You made us—and this ship—proud once more.”

    Matt said nothing, but then he slowly nodded.

    “Captain Matthew Lawrence Dahlgren,” Chan continued, “please accept from us this gift. Perhaps it will serve you well in the future. And if I am a truly blessed, perhaps I will be able to see it used,” he finished with a quiver of his antennae. “Lieutenant Vasa?”

    The stocky, solidly-built, blonde officer stepped forward and he clicked his heels together and bowed slightly before presenting Matt with a polished wood case more than a meter and half in length.

    Matt took the case, surprised at the weight and he laid it on the table. Two clasps secured the front and he pressed them, upon which signal the case top raised up to reveal a velvet lined interior in royal blue. And a slender curving basket hilted sword, along with a scabbard of brightly enameled in polished blue paint, chased with silver.

    Matt whistled softly and he lifted the sword, feeling the grip match his own hand perfectly; the balance was superb. He turned the sword and looked at the engraved blade. To Captain Matthew Lawrence Dahlgren, it read, master and commander of the United Federation of Planets Starship USS Republic (NCC-51497). May your voyages never end.

    The Captain placed the sword back in the case, and he shook his head, flinching slightly as he nicked his thumb along the blade.

    “Perhaps I should have said that it is extremely sharp, Captain,” the Lieutenant said in apology as he took a cleaning cloth and wiped the blade free. Quincy just opened his medical case and took out a dermal knitter and restored the minor cut without a single word—his broad grin said more than enough.

    “I am . . . I am . . . thank you,” Matt finally said. “If I may ask, gentlemen, ladies; why a sword?”

    “Ah,” the Swedish replicator officer spoke up. “You did threaten Captain Myers with a duel, Sir. His choice of blade or slug-thrower. I thought that you might need an appropriate weapon.”

    Matt blinked once, and then twice. “Very . . . considerate of you, Mister Vasa. Ladies, gentlemen, I am touched and honored by the gift; I will meet you on the bridge. Mister Shrak, would you stay?”

    The senior staff filed out, leaving only Matt and Chan standing there in Matt’s quarters. “Chan, you didn’t tell them that I have never, not once, in my entire life, so much as picked up a sword before today?”

    Then antennae of the executive officer quivered again. “The Lieutenant had already made the sword—and such a work of art it is indeed. Mister Pok provided him with the gemstones adorning the pommel and hilt, as well as the gold, silver, and platinum that form the wire wrapped, leather covered grip and the basket hilt. I didn’t want to disappoint either of them with the news that you were only bluffing. It would have broken Lieutenant Vasa’s heart.”

    “What the hell am I going to do with a sword? A real, live, sharper than a serpent’s tooth sword?”

    “Wear it with your dress uniform?” Chan answered as his antennae continued to twitch. “I do have some excellent swordsmanship Holodeck programs in case you actually want to learn how to use it.”

    “A sword,” repeated Matt as he shook his head. “Remind me to watch what I say in the future, Chan.”

    “I always do, and you say that was different. And then you ask me to remind you in the future to watch what you say. Again.”

    The Andorian reached down and he lifted up the sword and then the scabbard; he slid the weapon into its sheath. He sat down the weapon and took out a long deep blue sash, which he wrapped around the Captains waist, and then with a curt command of, “Hold this, Sir,” he once again picked up the sword and belt and he fastened it about Matt’s waist, over the sash.

    “There,” he barked and shook his head. “You do look perfectly ridiculous, but it would be good for the crew’s morale if you wore it.”

    Matt walked back over to this mirror and he took a long hard look, turning left and then right, his right hand resting on the pommel of the sword that peeked out from beneath the edge of his jacket.

    “Yeoman Sinclair will have a fit; the jacket isn’t tailored for this style. Still, it does look dashing, does it not?”

    “If you were a pirate captain, then it might, Captain Dahlgren.”

    “And you usually like such things, Chan.”

    “Oh, I do, I do indeed, Captain, Sir. I’m just wondering how you plan on sitting while wearing that piece of finely forged steel.”

    Matt frowned. And then he shook his head. “We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it, Mister Shrak. Now, I believe we have a ceremony to attend.”

    “That we do, Sir. That we do.”
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2012