DS9 12x10 - "Where the Heart Is"

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by DS9Continuing, Feb 18, 2019.

  1. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  2. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
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    Meanwhile...

    TNG 17x10 – “HELDENTOD”

    Enterprise arrives, and Kadohata lets Spock, Seven and LaForge out to go to the Planet Killer. While Picard and Worf wait in the brig, several Borg-controlled starships arrive. Enterprise takes heavy damage, and Kadohata begs Picard to take command again. He will, but only if she, Leybenzon and T’Lana promise to obey him. The Planet Killer comes to life and destroys the ships, but then zooms away. Enterprise gives chase. Picard reveals that LaForge had a back-up plan – the Endgame virus (TNG 5x23 “I Borg”). The destructive programme was never used, so the Borg should have no defence. Enterprise gets back to Earth just in time to see the super-cube absorb the Planet Killer, but then explode, destroying them both. Luckily Spock and LaForge escape in time. After the pseudo-mutiny, Kadohata begs forgiveness, and Leybenzon will transfer, but T’Lana absolutely refuses to work with Picard any longer, and the Einstein is still out there...

    TTN 1x10 – “THE PROPLYDIAN ACCORD”

    Pa’haquel leader Qui’hibra calls a conclave of all the local hunting tribes so that Riker can present his idea. They do this at the Proplydian, a massive space-going lifeform that is literally a living star system, which the Pa’haquel revere as a pinnacle of space life. Riker suggests teaching the jellies how to communicate with the Branchers, and use them as weapons instead. It depends on the jellies agreeing, but after a shaky start, it seems to be working. Not all the Pa’haquel tribes agree to it, but Qui’hibra thinks it will catch on eventually, and thanks Riker. Keru realises that his dislike of Torvig was because the innocent young Choblik is cybernetic – like the Borg, who killed his lover Sean. Keru asks Torvig’s forgiveness. Titan then goes back to the jelly breeding world for shore leave, where they witness a jelly-baby being born. Troi asks Riker – when are we going to start a family?

    VOY 10x10 – “LONG LIVE THE QUEEN”

    Aboard the Planet Killer, Seven takes control and drives the machine to attack and destroy the Borg-controlled starships. That done, she zooms back to Earth and fights Janeway’s super-cube, but the cube wins. Absorbing the Planet Killer also absorbs Seven, and with her the Endgame virus. As Seven tries to force the programme into the Borg’s systems, Janeway emerges – the real Janeway, not the Queen. She tells Seven how proud she is of her, then drops the firewalls, allowing the virus in. The super-cube is destroyed, seemingly taking Janeway and Seven with it. But Seven is saved by the freighter captain Vargo, who had been watching from a safe distance. Some time later, Janeway wakes up in a white space. The female Q offers to take her somewhere warm and safe, where there is plenty of coffee. Janeway accepts, so she and Q walk off together into the light.
     
  3. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    TEASER


    FADE IN:


    1 EXT. SPACE - PLANETARY ORBIT


    Looking down upon the planet’s green-swirled surface, as a small fleet of ships rise up out of the atmosphere to meet us. Two advanced Starfleet super-shuttles of the type seen in TNG “Insurrection” are at the fleet’s centre, with other Federation-but-non-Starfleet support vessels around them.

    As we TURN TO FOLLOW the small fleet’s passage, we see where they are heading for...

    ...the USS James T Kirk. The Akira-class cruiser stands in orbit of the planet, strong and sturdy.

    The two Starfleet shuttles slowly approach the Kirk, while the support ships hold back. As we grow closer and closer to the Kirk, we can see the large bank of SHUTTLE BAY DOORS along its leading edge. These doors slowly rumble OPEN, revealing the expansive shuttle bay inside the ship.

    The two Starfleet shuttles head directly for these open doors, passing through the FORCEFIELDS that cover their apertures and into...


    2 INT. KIRK - MAIN SHUTTLE BAY (CONTINUOUS)


    ...a gigantic shuttle bay. As the shuttles make their slow, controlled way into the room, we see the CONTROL BOOTHS staffed with junior officers watching them pass.

    We TURN TO FOLLOW again, revealing a massive, multi-floor complex with room for more than 50 auxiliary craft of various types - worker bees, shuttles, runabouts, and even single-person fighters. These have all been racked up and moved out of the way, leaving room in the middle...

    ...for the two super-shuttles to gently lower to the deck. They settle in parallel, engines quieting.

    Captain ELIAS VAUGHN, dressed in flawless dress whites that suit him perfectly, steps forward, with Commander ROGEIRO just a step behind, and a phalanx of security officers.

    The doors of both shuttles HISS open, and out of both step a black-suited non-Starfleet SECURITY OFFICER, a private protection detail. They each quickly scan around visually, both the area immediately around their shuttle and the room at large. Apparently satisfied, they turn and nod permission for their charges to proceed.

    Out of the first shuttle steps ASHANTÉ PHIRI, one of the President’s deputy chiefs of staff. Vaughn raises a slight eyebrow at this, but then looks across to the second shuttle and understands...

    ...because out of this shuttle steps NANIETTA BACCO, the President of the Federation. Her personal bodyguard, WEXLER, stays far enough away to give her space but close enough that he can be at her side in a split second.

    Vaughn steps forward again, heading towards the second shuttle. Rogeiro and the Kirk’s security detachment follow. Meanwhile Phiri, Wexler, and a handful of other support staff move from their shuttles to join.

    They meet in the middle, where Vaughn officially welcomes the President with a polite bow.


    VAUGHN
    Madam President, welcome aboard
    the James T Kirk. It is an honour
    to have you aboard.

    BACCO
    Glad to be here, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    I am Elias Vaughn. Please allow
    me to introduce my first officer,
    Commander Anxo Rogeiro.

    BACCO
    (nods)
    Commander. Anxo - that’s Portuguese,
    isn’t it?

    ROGEIRO
    Indeed, ma’am. It means “Angel”.

    BACCO
    I should set you up with my chief
    of staff, Esperanza.

    ROGEIRO
    With respect, ma’am, Esperanza is
    a Spanish name, not Portuguese.

    BACCO
    Exactly - imagine the fireworks.​


    She grins - clearly she’s making a joke. Vaughn and Rogeiro both chuckle politely. She is the president, after all.


    BACCO
    Right, Captain. Let’s get this show
    on the road, shall we? You have
    no idea the trouble Esperanza
    went to to arrange this timetable,
    God bless her, and she’ll kill me
    if she hears I messed it up.

    VAUGHN
    Certainly, Madam President.
    (turns to Rogeiro)
    Commander, if you would, please.

    ROGEIRO
    Aye, sir.​


    Rogeiro steps away from the group and taps his combadge.


    ROGEIRO
    Rogeiro to the bridge.

    MAGRONE (comm)
    Go ahead, Commander.

    ROGEIRO
    The president is on board. Please
    co-ordinate with the other vessels
    in her entourage, set course for
    the Cestus system, and engage
    at your discretion.

    MAGRONE (comm)
    Understood, sir. Bridge out.​


    Meanwhile, Vaughn is guiding Bacco towards the exit, with the Starfleet security team leading the way and the president’s entourage following. They pass out into...


    3 INT. KIRK - CORRIDOR (CONTINUOUS)


    ...the corridor leading from the shuttle bay. They walk and talk, security ever present.


    BACCO
    Quite a ship you have here, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    She is indeed, ma’am. I’d be
    happy to give you a tour, if you
    have the time.

    BACCO
    I’m sure I can fit it in. But
    first, I need to get these shoes
    off and get a raktajino in me.
    Please tell me your replicators
    can handle that?

    VAUGHN
    Absolutely, ma’am. I realise we
    may not have the palatial luxury
    of a Galaxy-class, but our finest
    guest quarters are yours, with the
    surrounding quarters set aside for
    your support staff. It’s not every
    day we transport the President
    of the Federation, after all.

    BACCO
    I appreciate the effort, Captain.
    I wasn’t kidding about the time
    table, by the way. This goodwill
    tour has been in the planning
    stages for months, and I think the
    final itinerary was only agreed
    the morning I left Earth.

    VAUGHN
    Why so difficult, if I may ask?

    BACCO
    Oh, just fitting in around a dozen
    planets’ various public holidays
    and holy days and travel times and
    security requirements. Did you know
    the Lembatta system basically shuts
    down and meditates whenever they
    have a solar eclipse? The whole
    system, every single person.

    VAUGHN
    Fascinating.

    BACCO
    I swear Esperanza actually moved
    some star systems around to make
    it work. That’s probably how you
    ended up with this detail instead
    of my usual berth on the Venture.
    The only way she could get it
    all to fit together.

    VAUGHN
    (evasive)
    Yes, I’m sure that must be it.​


    The group stops as they reach a turbolift. Vaughn and Bacco step aside as Wexler enters the already-waiting turbolift and scans it both visually and with a tricorder.


    BACCO
    But this particular visit is the
    one I’m most looking forward to.

    VAUGHN
    Naturally - Cestus Three is your
    homeworld, that’s to be expected.​


    The security officer nods permission for them to proceed. Vaughn and Bacco both step aboard the turbolift, with Wexler and one Starfleet security with them.


    BACCO
    It’s not just that. Every year
    since I became planetary governor,
    I’ve been there for the opening
    day ceremonies of the Cestus
    Baseball League. I wasn’t about
    to let my becoming responsible
    for several trillion lives stop me
    from keeping that tradition.

    VAUGHN
    You’re a fan, I take it.

    BACCO
    I sometimes feel like it’s the
    only thing that keeps me sane
    in this job.​


    Bacco chuckles at her own joke. Vaughn does not. He does not trust this woman, no matter how friendly she seems. As the door closes on his stern, suspicious face...


    4 EXT. SPACE - PLANETARY ORBIT


    The Kirk moves slowly out of orbit. As the other ships in the president’s retinue move into formation around the capital ship, they all move off together, and one by one, they JUMP TO WARP, streaking away into space.


    FADE OUT


    END OF TEASER
     
  4. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ACT ONE


    FADE IN


    5 EXT. SPACE


    The fleet flies at warp, with the Kirk at its head and the support ships trailing behind.


    6 INT. KIRK - GUEST QUARTERS


    The stars streak by the window at warp, lighting the most luxurious quarters available on the ship. Bacco herself sits on a couch underneath the window, her back to the stars as she reaches down and rubs her naked feet.

    Ashanté Phiri sits on a low chair opposite, reading from the padd in her hand, coffees on the table between them.


    PHIRI
    Once we arrive at Cestus, you’ll
    be greeted by Governor Gari -

    BACCO
    Still weird hearing you call her
    that. Feels like only ten minutes
    ago that was my job.

    PHIRI
    - and then there’ll be a short
    reception before you head off to
    Ruth Field for the Opening Day.

    BACCO
    (stretches)
    Better warm up my pitching arm
    then, hadn’t I?​


    The door chime sounds.


    BACCO
    Come in!​


    The door opens and Wexler pokes his head in.


    WEXLER
    Captain Vaughn to see you, ma’am.

    BACCO
    Come in, Captain!​


    Vaughn enters. Bacco stays where she is, sat down, rubbing her feet. She is a “this is who I am, accept it” kind of person. Vaughn has changed back into his regular uniform.


    VAUGHN
    Madam President - your tour?

    BACCO
    Oh right, yes. With you in a
    moment, Captain.
    (to Phiri)
    Ashanté, call ahead to Gari and
    make sure she knows I don’t want
    too much fuss. I’m the president,
    I’m not God.

    PHIRI
    Not yet, perhaps.

    BACCO
    Hey - that’s not the kind of thing
    I want Esperanza teaching you,
    okay? Go on, off you pop.

    PHIRI
    (standing)
    Madam President. Captain.​


    She leaves the room. Bacco looks back up at Vaughn, then reaches for her shoes, puts them back on with a wince. Then she stands again with an impish grin.


    BACCO
    Time to impress me, Captain.​


    Half-bowing, Vaughn after-you’s her to the door.


    7 EXT. SPACE


    Still flying at warp...


    8 INT. KIRK - MAIN SHUTTLE BAY


    The door opens and Vaughn, Bacco and Wexler (at a discreet distance) re-enter the shuttle bay. As they explore...


    VAUGHN
    You’ll remember the main shuttle
    bay, of course.

    BACCO
    I remember it was a cavern and
    a half. Even the Venture doesn’t
    have this many shuttles.

    VAUGHN
    The Akira is one of Starfleet’s
    most heavily armed classes. That
    extends to its auxiliary craft.

    BACCO
    “Auxiliary craft”... you mean fighters.

    VAUGHN
    The Kirk saw action as a carrier
    during the war, yes. But the
    number of shuttles also serves us
    during humanitarian missions.
    Evacuations, for example.

    BACCO
    Damn this place is big. Looks like
    it goes right through the ship.

    VAUGHN
    It does. The bay covers three
    whole decks and stretches fore
    to aft, with airlocks at both ends.
    That way, more can be launching
    from the front while the first
    return at the back, and they also
    have the protection of the split
    hull as they come in. The entire
    ship is basically built around
    this shuttle bay.

    BACCO
    Well... I did ask you to impress
    me, I guess. But you’ve also
    daunted me, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    Doesn’t the President deserve the
    highest protection Starfleet can
    offer? Cestus is right on the
    border of Gorn space, after all.

    BACCO
    You’re expecting conflict?

    VAUGHN
    I try never to expect it, ma’am.
    But I’m always prepared for it.​


    Bacco doesn’t look especially appeased by that. Vaughn still keeps a close eye on her, watchful and wary...


    9 INT. KIRK - BRIDGE


    The main bridge, with Rogeiro sat in the centre chair. The rest of the senior staff are on duty - Vulcan helm T’LARIK, Betazoid male tactical MAGRONE, human male ops DUNLOP, and the familiar chan Andorian science officer SHAR.

    Rogeiro receives a small ALERT on his side panel, and stands sharply from his seat.


    ROGEIRO
    All hands, stand to attention.​


    They do. A moment later, the turbolift door opens, and Vaughn and Bacco enter the bridge, Wexler ever present.


    VAUGHN
    ...and this, of course, is the
    bridge. The nerve centre of the
    James T Kirk. My senior staff -
    Lieutenant Magrone, Lieutenant
    Dunlop, Lieutenant Commander
    T’Larik and Lieutenant ch’Thane.

    BACCO
    Thirishar ch’Thane? Well, it’s an
    honour to meet you, Lieutenant.

    SHAR
    (taken aback)
    Oh... well thank you, ma’am. Why?

    BACCO
    Andor was my first stop on this
    tour, you know. And your name was
    on everyone’s lips. I understand
    you’ve been doing remarkable work
    on your people’s genetic issues. I
    spoke with a Professor sh’Veileth
    and she couldn’t stop gushing.

    SHAR
    That’s very flattering to hear,
    ma’am. But I’m happy to help.​


    Vaughn and Bacco continue around the bridge.


    VAUGHN
    Helm, how long to our destination?

    T’LARIK
    (checks panels)
    The Kirk is three hours and six
    minutes from the Cestus system,
    Captain. As specified in the
    schedule provided by the
    President’s staff.

    VAUGHN
    Perfect. Just enough time to get
    some lunch in the crew lounge.

    BACCO
    Now that is the best thing I’ve
    heard since I came onboard.

    VAUGHN
    Commander Rogeiro, as you were.​


    Vaughn, Bacco and Wexler head back to the turbolift.


    10 INT. KIRK - LOUNGE


    A rather simpler affair than a Galaxy or Vesta class lounge, more along the lines of Voyager’s mess hall. It is nevertheless half-filled with off-duty crew and a handful of civilians, including some of the President’s own staff.

    The doors open and Vaughn and Bacco enter, with Wexler once again trailing at a distance. Vaughn leads them over to the bar, where he speaks to the civilian bartender.


    VAUGHN
    Could we see the menus, please?
    (turns)
    Mister Wexler?

    WEXLER
    No thank you, Captain.​


    Wexler prefers to watch. The bartender provides two menus.


    BACCO
    Oh, I’ll just have whatever you
    recommend.

    VAUGHN
    Very well. Two chicken parmigianas
    with Berengarian ale, please.​


    The bartender nods acknowledgement and moves away to the replicators. Vaughn after-you’s again for Bacco, over towards the tables in front of the window.


    BACCO
    Ale? Aren’t we both on duty?

    VAUGHN
    Synthale. You have to ask the
    captain for the proper stuff.

    BACCO
    In the Palais, the replicators are
    specifically reprogrammed not to
    produce anything with real alcohol
    during working hours. More than
    once I’ve thought about tracking
    down whoever made that decision
    and reprogramming them.​


    They reach the tables under the window, where Vaughn asks a pair of civilians already sitting at one table...


    VAUGHN
    Mind if we join you?​


    And now we see that these people are SISKO and KASIDY. Sisko immediately jumps to his feet and grabs Vaughn in a big back-slapping bro-hug. Kasidy stands more demurely.


    SISKO
    Elias!

    VAUGHN
    (laughing)
    Hello, Ben. Good to see you too.
    Perhaps you recognise Nanietta
    Bacco, the President of the
    Federation?

    KASIDY
    Oh my goodness. Madam President,
    of course. I wasn’t expecting to
    meet you. It’s an honour.

    VAUGHN
    Captain Benjamin Sisko and
    Kasidy Yates.

    BACCO
    Sit, please. No ceremony for me.​


    The four sit at the table together, casual and chummy. The bartender brings food and drink for Bacco and Vaughn.


    VAUGHN
    Ben and Kasidy are also on their
    way to Cestus for the baseball
    season. Since I was passing Bajor
    on my way to meet you, it seemed
    only right to offer them a lift.

    KASIDY
    I still have family there, so
    we’re taking the chance for a
    bit of a reunion.

    BACCO
    Family... wait, did you say Yates?
    You’re not related to Kornelius
    Yates, are you?

    KASIDY
    He’s my brother!

    BACCO
    Oh good lord. Captain, Kornelius
    Yates is the star hitter for the
    Pike City Pioneers. I feel like
    I’m in the presence of royalty!

    SISKO
    Well, we have dugout seats waiting
    for us at the first game. I’m sure
    we could pull some strings.

    KASIDY
    You know, given that you used to
    run the entire planet.

    BACCO
    Dugout seats? Who do you think’s
    throwing out the first ball?​


    Sisko whistles, impressed. As the three of them gossip about baseball over lunch, Vaughn sits back and watches.

    Despite the company of his friends, he is still wary of Bacco. He watches this seemingly happy, guileless woman laugh and enjoy her food, sure she is up to something...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT ONE
     
  5. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
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    ACT TWO


    FADE IN


    11 EXT. SPACE - PLANETARY ORBIT


    The small fleet, with Kirk still in the lead, pulls into the orbit of another planet - this one yellowish in colour.


    12 INT. KIRK - MAIN SHUTTLE BAY


    Now Bacco and her entire retinue are preparing to get back into their two super-shuttles. Vaughn and a phalanx of security are there to see them off.


    ROGEIRO (comm)
    Bridge to Captain - we have
    achieved orbit of Cestus Three.
    You are clear to proceed.

    VAUGHN
    Acknowledged, Commander.
    Vaughn out.​


    Vaughn taps his combadge to close the channel, then turns back to Bacco and her staff.


    VAUGHN
    My crew confirms you are clear to
    depart at your leisure, Madam
    President.

    BACCO
    Much appreciated, Captain. Hope
    I’ll see you down there. You look
    like you could use a day out as
    much as the rest of us.

    SISKO
    Oh, he always looks like that.​


    Revealing that Sisko and Kasidy are now a part of the president’s entourage. Vaughn turns a jokingly withering look on him, but Bacco BARKS with laughter.


    BACCO
    Alright, come on you two. You’re
    with me.​


    She heads towards her shuttle. Kasidy joins her, but Sisko hovers, and speaks to Vaughn more personally.


    SISKO
    She’s right, Elias, you do look
    stressed. You should let me
    take you out to the ball game.

    VAUGHN
    I’ll be down later, Ben. Just some
    shipboard business to take care
    of first. You know how it is.

    SISKO
    Don’t work too hard.​


    Sisko turns to join the party as they enter the shuttles. Vaughn watches them go, then turns sternly.


    13 INT. KIRK - BRIDGE


    Vaughn enters the bridge from the turbolift, and heads immediately towards his ready room without even looking.


    VAUGHN
    Mister Magrone, please join me
    in my ready room.​


    He continues, expecting Magrone to do as ordered. Magrone shares a look of muted surprise with Rogeiro, but moves to follow the captain. An EXTRA takes his place at tactical.


    14 INT. KIRK - CAPTAIN’S READY ROOM


    Vaughn takes his seat behind the desk, waits for Magrone to enter and stand at attention before his captain.


    VAUGHN
    Take a seat, Lieutenant.
    (he does)
    I was wondering, what’s your
    impression of the President?

    MAGRONE
    Oh. Umm, well I haven’t been able
    to spend much time with her. But
    she seems like a very straight-
    forward, no nonsense woman.

    VAUGHN
    And what do your Betazoid senses
    tell you?

    MAGRONE
    (hesitant)
    I'm not sure I understand the
    question, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    Don’t be obtuse, Lieutenant.
    You’re a telepath. In your brief
    interactions, has President
    Bacco given you any reason
    to believe she’s not being
    entirely truthful?

    MAGRONE
    Sir, I have not performed any
    unauthorised scans of the
    President. Nor do I have
    any intention of doing so.

    VAUGHN
    Nor am I asking you to. But you
    can’t have helped but pick up some
    general impressions, whether you
    intended to or not. Those natural
    Betazoid senses are as valid and
    ethically neutral as my own human
    ones, and as my tactical officer,
    I hope to hell you’d incorporate
    them into your tactical analysis.
    (calm, but with no
    room for refusal)
    Tell me your impressions of the
    President, Mister Magrone.​


    Magrone takes a deep breath. This feels wrong, but Vaughn has made a compelling argument. Reluctantly, he speaks.


    MAGRONE
    She’s eager to see her home and
    friends again. Looking forward to
    the baseball game later. Exhausted
    by the pace of her timetable, but
    refusing to back down from it.

    VAUGHN
    All of which she’s said out loud.
    I need more. Do you trust her?

    MAGRONE
    I see no reason not to, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    You’re absolutely certain? You
    have no impression that she’s
    keeping things from us?

    MAGRONE
    Captain, she’s the President of
    the Federation. I have no doubt
    she’s keeping lots of things from
    us - things it’s not our business
    or right to know. But do I trust
    her? Yes. Yes, I do.​


    Vaughn sighs, disappointed. It’s not what he wanted.


    VAUGHN
    Alright. Thank you, Lieutenant.
    Dismissed.​


    Just as Magrone gets up from his chair, the comm sounds.


    ROGEIRO (comm)
    Captain to the bridge.​


    As YELLOW ALERT lights begin to flash, Vaughn instantly gets up and chases Magrone back onto the bridge...


    15 INT. KIRK - BRIDGE (CONTINUOUS)


    Magrone returns to his tactical station, relieving the Extra. Rogeiro stands to make way for Vaughn at command.


    ROGEIRO
    A Gorn warship just entered orbit.
    They’re on an intercept course.

    VAUGHN
    Tactical analysis.

    MAGRONE
    Balaur-class, inferior to the Kirk
    - under normal circumstances.

    ROGEIRO
    These are no normal circumstances,
    sir. The President and her retinue
    are still within range, and they
    need our protection.

    SHAR
    They’re hailing us.

    VAUGHN
    On screen, Mister ch’Thane.​


    Vaughn takes his seat, Rogeiro beside him, both attempting to convey calm and confidence. After a moment, the main viewscreen changes to show a GORN, its heavy reptilian form looming large and HISSING through bared teeth.


    S’ALATH (screen)
    I am Sss’Alathhhh of the Gorn
    Hegemony.

    VAUGHN
    Welcome to Cestus Three, Captain
    S’Alath. I am Captain Elias Vaughn
    of the starship James T Kirk. How
    can we help you?

    S’ALATH (screen)
    You have Bacco?

    VAUGHN
    I'm sorry, I’m not sure I
    understand the question.

    S’ALATH (screen)
    Bacco! Isss she with you? On
    your vesssel?

    VAUGHN
    What would lead you to think that?

    S’ALATH (screen)
    Do not play gamesss, mammal!
    Show me Bacco, now!

    VAUGHN
    Captain S’Alath, I can say with
    absolute truth that President
    Bacco is not on board the Kirk.

    S’ALATH (screen)
    I am tired of ssspeaking to you,
    human. Show me Bacco, or I
    will open fffire on you.

    VAUGHN
    Captain, please. There is no need
    for battle here. I am not capable
    of fulfilling your request. But if
    you insist on pushing the matter,
    I assure you the Kirk is fully
    capable of answering in kind.​


    S’Alath gives a furious yet dismissive HISS, and cuts the channel. Vaughn immediately turns to Shar.


    VAUGHN
    Mister ch’Thane, get me a secure
    comm channel to the President’s
    shuttle, now.

    SHAR
    Aye, sir.
    (works panels)
    I have them.​


    Vaughn nods, and the viewscreen changes to show Bacco sat in the luxurious rear cabin of the shuttle, with Sisko, Kasidy and Wexler also visible.


    BACCO (screen)
    Captain, is there a problem?

    VAUGHN
    I’m afraid so, Madam President. A
    Gorn warship has arrived, and its
    captain, S’Alath, is demanding to
    speak to you or he’ll open fire.

    BACCO (screen)
    (thoughtful)
    S’Alath, eh?

    VAUGHN
    I assure you, we are prepared to
    defend you as necessary, ma’am.

    BACCO (screen)
    No, there’s no need for that. I’ll
    talk to him.

    WEXLER (screen)
    Madam President, I recommend
    returning to the Kirk. We’d be
    less vulnerable there.

    SISKO (screen)
    If you turn the shuttle around,
    they’ll know you’re onboard.

    VAUGHN
    I have a solution for that. Mister
    ch’Thane, prepare for transporter
    protocol Ro Eleven, please. You’ll
    find it under my own file.
    (back to screen)
    If you’ll allow me, ma’am.

    BACCO (screen)
    Go ahead, Captain. I trust you.​


    That causes Vaughn to wince a little with guilt. But he covers it quickly and turns to Shar again.


    VAUGHN
    Engage, Mister ch’Thane.​


    Shar works his panels... and Bacco MATERIALISES in the centre of the bridge. Vaughn stands to greet her.


    VAUGHN
    Hail the Gorn, Mister ch’Thane.​


    Shar works his panels - S’Alath returns to the viewscreen.


    S’ALATH (screen)
    Nan Bacco! They sssaid you were
    not on board. They lied.

    BACCO
    What do you expect, S’Alath, when
    you come breathing down our necks
    without so much as a hello?​


    S’Alath LAUGHS - a gurgling sound that puts Vaughn’s teeth on edge. To his surprise, Bacco laughs along with him.


    S’ALATH (screen)
    I exssspect them to let us enjoy a
    tankard of cold Meridor together!

    BACCO
    It’s good to see you too, S’Alath.
    Are you coming down for the game?

    S’ALATH (screen)
    Human gamesss are boring! Where
    are the teeth?!​


    It’s becoming clear that these two are old friends. Vaughn is feeling a little indignant at having been misled.


    BACCO (screen)
    I’ll make sure the Governor sets
    aside several large seats for you.

    S’ALATH
    And don’t make it ssso long
    nexssst time!​


    With a toothy grin, S’Alath signs off. Bacco turns back to Vaughn, smiling. He is not so impressed.


    VAUGHN
    “A tankard of cold Meridor” ?

    BACCO
    You said Cestus is right on the
    edge of Gorn space, Captain. It’s
    a good thing to make friends.

    VAUGHN
    Forgive me, ma’am, but if they’re
    such good friends, why did they
    threaten to fire on us?

    BACCO
    Well, you did show up at Cestus in
    a ship named after James T Kirk.
    S’Alath is the same Gorn captain
    who first fought with Kirk over
    who got to colonise Cestus.

    VAUGHN
    The very same man? But that was
    over a hundred years ago.

    BACCO
    I don’t think either one of us has
    any business complaining about
    someone living for a long time,
    Captain. Right! Let’s get me
    back on that shuttle, shall we?
    There’s a game to get to!​


    She turns and heads back towards the turbolift, job done. Vaughn watches her go, feeling angry and embarrassed. He is really starting to not like her now...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT TWO
     
  6. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    Manchester
    ACT THREE


    FADE IN


    16 EXT. CESTUS - RUTH FIELD BASEBALL STADIUM - DAY


    WIDE SHOT of the entire stadium - the traditional baseball diamond, a perfect green ground around it, and bleachers packed with thousands upon thousands of ROARing fans. It is a glorious sunny day, the perfect weather for a game.


    17 EXT. CESTUS - RUTH FIELD BASEBALL STADIUM - DAY


    A view of the DUGOUT, with the not-currently-playing members of the batting side all on their feet and enjoying watching the game as much as the crowd. These are the PIKE CITY PIONEERS, the local baseball team, and among their number we identify one KORNELIUS YATES - Kasidy’s brother.


    PAN UP from the dugout to the first row of seats directly behind-and-above it...


    ...where we see our characters. Ben Sisko, Kasidy, Vaughn, Shar, Bacco, plus JAKE and RENA. To one side stands Wexler, constantly on the lookout for threats to the president. On the other is S’Alath, the hulking reptilian Gorn captain.

    Everyone save for Wexler is in civilian clothing - this is a day out and they are enjoying the hell out of it. All but Vaughn and Rena are on their feet, HOWLING cheers and cat-calls and exhortions to success, as the SOUND of the game goes on off screen - balls thrown, balls hit, balls caught.

    Rena sits back in her bleacher seat, enjoying the day and the sun, but not really understanding what the fuss is all about. Vaughn sits back likewise, things on his mind.


    RENA
    Do you have any idea what’s going
    on here?

    VAUGHN
    (chuckle)
    Not a clue. If you don’t follow the
    game, why are you here?

    RENA
    (shrug)
    It makes Jake happy. It makes all
    of them happy.

    VAUGHN
    Ben mentioned you’d been on Earth.
    I didn’t realise you were visiting
    Cestus as well - quite the tour of
    the Federation you’re making.

    RENA
    Jake and Ben’s family is back on
    Earth. Kasidy’s is here. Plus...
    there’s something Jake and I need
    to talk to them about. Something
    we need to tell them.

    VAUGHN
    Oh my goodness... are you
    pregnant? Congratulations!

    RENA
    (laughs)
    No, I’m not pregnant. But don’t
    worry, it’s good news. I think.​


    A particularly impressive play on the field gets the crowd ROARING - our characters right along with them. Especially the Gorn captain S’Alath - that guy can make some noise.


    RENA
    What about you? This not your
    sport either?

    VAUGHN
    Oh, sorry. Just the pressures of
    command. Always... thinking.​


    The rest don’t seem to have any problems. Ben, Kasidy, Jake and Bacco are having the time of their lives - relaxed and enjoying the game. As they SCREAM with excitement again...


    CUT TO


    18 INT. PIONEER PUB


    A room of baseball fans all likewise CHEERing as they watch the game on TV screens set behind the bar and on the walls.

    Civilian EXTRAS are packed into the tight spaces of this old-fashioned sports-fans’ pub. The walls are decorated with baseball MEMORABILIA - players’ shirts, trophies, gloves, bats, photographs, everything you can think of.

    Vaughn and Jake stand at the bar waiting for their order.


    JAKE
    Well, what do you think now you’ve
    finally met her?

    VAUGHN
    Met who - Rena? We’ve met before.

    JAKE
    Not Rena, Bacco. The President.

    VAUGHN
    I told you we would not discuss
    that, Mister Sisko.​


    Vaughn remains stony-faced. Jake shrugs - whatever. Seven frosty glasses of ale are handed over. With thanks, Vaughn and Jake grasp hold of them and turn to gradually manoeuvre through the crowd, trying not to spill the precious cargo.

    Across the bar, there is a big round TABLE set into a semi-separated booth. Sisko, Kasidy, Jake, Shar and Kornelius sit there waiting for their beers. Fans occasionally stop to shake Kornelius’ hand or high-five him in congrats.


    SISKO
    They really love you here.

    KORNELIUS
    Ah, not all of them. Half the
    commentators seem determined to
    write me off these days. “Yates is
    past it. He’s so far past it he’s on
    another planet.”

    KASIDY
    Well, you showed them. When you
    made that long slide into home...

    KORNELIUS
    (grin)
    Gotta keep the home crowd happy.​


    Meanwhile Shar and Rena chat, separate from the others.


    RENA
    So how are you handling being away
    from home again?

    SHAR
    In what sense?

    RENA
    Nog told us you went back to Andor
    after the Ascendant thing. And you
    had your baby. Congratulations.

    SHAR
    Thank you.

    RENA
    I just thought... it must be weird.
    Being away from home for so
    long, then suddenly being back,
    then suddenly leaving again.

    SHAR
    None of it was sudden, Mrs Sisko.
    (off her glower)
    Rena. My apologies. But all these
    things were long in the planning.
    I always knew that home could not
    offer me all that I craved - the
    chance to roam and uncover the
    mysteries of the galaxy. But the
    reason I craved that... was so
    that I could help my home.

    RENA
    You mean your people’s fertility
    issues.

    SHAR
    Indeed. Everything I did was for
    them. And although I thought I had
    to sacrifice my place in that home
    in order to help it... that was not
    the case. And now I am content
    to leave home again, because I
    know that home has not left me.

    RENA
    (smile)
    I like talking to you, Shar.​


    Shar smiles shyly, just as Vaughn and Jake arrive with their beers. As they are passed around the table, Shar and Rena hutch along to let Jake and Vaughn sit beside them.


    JAKE
    What did we miss?

    RENA
    Just talking about home.

    JAKE
    Right to the point, then.

    SISKO
    What do you mean?​


    Jake exchanges a look with Rena - are we doing this? She nods back - go ahead, might as well. Jake takes a breath.


    JAKE
    I’m glad you’re all here, because
    Rena and I have some big news.

    KASIDY
    Oh my god you’re pregnant!

    JAKE
    (chuckle)
    No, that’s not it.
    (to Rena)
    Right?

    RENA
    I’m not pregnant. I am questioning
    my fashion choices, though.

    JAKE
    The thing is, when we went back to
    Earth to visit Grampa Joe, I also
    had an interview... at Pennington.

    SISKO
    The journalism school? You’re
    thinking of applying again?

    JAKE
    Not just thinking of. I’m in.
    Term starts in the spring.

    KASIDY
    But that would mean...

    JAKE
    Yeah. Rena and I are moving back
    to Earth. We’ll live with Grampa,
    and Rena will learn how to run the
    restaurant while I go to school.

    SISKO
    Jake, that’s...

    JAKE
    It’s big, I know. But we’ve been
    thinking about going home for
    a while. I didn’t want to say
    anything in case it didn’t work
    out. But now that it has...​


    Jake shrugs again, apologetically. Vaughn raises his beer in cheers, and after a moment, Ben does as well.


    VAUGHN
    Congratulations, Mister Sisko. And
    Mrs Sisko. You’ll both be sorely
    missed, I have no doubt.​


    Kasidy grabs hold of Ben’s hand, offering support.


    SISKO
    My boy’s growing up. At least I
    know you’ll be safe at home. Dad
    would die before he let anything
    happen to you. Good luck, son.

    JAKE
    Thanks, dad. We’ll be fine.​


    A CHEER goes up around the bar - everyone looks around. On the SCREENS, the moment is replaying when Bacco threw out the opening ball of the game - the 90-year-old white-haired old lady pitching that baseball like a professional. At the table, everyone grins - everyone except for Vaughn.


    SISKO
    They really love her as well.

    KORNELIUS
    Best governor we ever had.

    VAUGHN
    Then why did she leave?

    KORNELIUS
    They asked that in an interview.
    She just said, “Blame Esperanza.”

    VAUGHN
    Where is the president anyway?

    JAKE
    I was trying to tell you earlier.
    She’s holding a town hall.

    VAUGHN
    A what?

    KASIDY
    She used to do it every month when
    she was governor. She would just
    grab a room and anyone who wanted
    could come and talk to her about
    anything they felt like. Never
    missed a single time, not one.

    VAUGHN
    That’s... very admirable.

    JAKE
    Min Zife never did it, that’s for
    sure. From what I read, in his
    entire seven years in office, he
    never went on a goodwill tour. No
    open meetings, no listening to the
    ordinary people who voted him in
    power. Not once.

    SHAR
    He did nothing to help my people
    either. President Bacco is the first
    Federation leader to visit Andor
    in over a decade.

    JAKE
    And she’s only been in power for
    six months.

    RENA
    It wasn’t that long ago you were
    convinced she was evil incarnate.

    JAKE
    I just thought it was a bit weird
    how no-one had ever heard of her,
    and suddenly she’s the president.

    KASIDY
    No-one except for this entire
    planet, you mean.

    JAKE
    But I did my research, I followed
    the facts like a real journalist, and...
    I changed my mind. I mean, here
    she is, comes all the way across
    the Federation just so that every-
    one can see her enjoying a base-
    ball game and being a real person.
    Whatever else may be going on,
    I think she genuinely cares about
    the people she represents.​


    Jake shares a pointed look with Vaughn, trying to make his case to him silently. Vaughn takes it without reaction.


    ROGEIRO (comm)
    Kirk to Vaughn. Kirk to Vaughn.
    Please respond, sir.​


    A little puzzled, Vaughn reaches into his pants pocket and pulls out his combadge, taps it to receive the signal.


    VAUGHN
    Commander? What’s the problem?

    ROGEIRO (comm)
    Captain - Admiral Ross has been
    urgently trying to get hold of you
    and the President. I need you both
    to come back to the ship as soon
    as possible, sir.

    VAUGHN
    What’s going on, Commander?

    ROGEIRO (comm)
    There’s been an attack, Captain.
    An attack on Earth.​


    Off everyone’s reaction to that...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT THREE
     
  7. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    Manchester
    ACT FOUR


    FADE IN


    19 INT. KIRK - BRIDGE


    The viewscreen shows clips from a BATTLE - the battle seen in VOY 10x09 “Hungry”. A giant, misshapen BORG CUBE is under attack by an entire fleet of Starfleet vessels, including the one which is recording this encounter.

    As we watch, the cube literally ABSORBS a Starfleet ship. It sucks the ship in, folding it into its own body, eating it whole. This happens again and again with more Starfleet ships, the cube shrugging off any attempts to destroy it.

    PAN AROUND until we see the rest of the bridge. Vaughn, Shar, Rogeiro and the entire bridge crew of the Kirk. Sisko, Kasidy, Jake and Rena. Finally Bacco, Phiri and Wexler. They all stand silently, watching the slaughter.

    Bacco stares dumbfounded at the screen, tears in her eyes.

    Kasidy is holding Ben’s hand. Rena is holding Jake’s hand. Then Jake reaches out and holds his father’s hand as well.

    The image on screen changes to Admiral ROSS, looking tired and haggard into the camera.


    ROSS (screen)
    Madam President, the first battle
    took place in sector 108. Three
    dozen ships faced the cube. Only a
    handful survived. The entire thing
    took... ninety-seven seconds. The
    cube then proceeded to Earth.​


    On the screen, the recording switches to another BATTLE - this the one as seen in TNG “Heldentod” and VOY “Long Live the Queen”. The super-cube is now in battle with a PLANET KILLER - the very same one from TOS “The Doomsday Machine.”

    The cube likewise ABSORBS the giant crystalline machine... but a few moments later, the entire construction EXPLODES in a giant ball of fire. Our POV shudders with the force of it, and quickly scoots out of the way before being caught.

    As the crew flinch back from the bright light, the image returns to Ross.


    ROSS (screen)
    Captain Picard of the Enterprise,
    Professor Hansen and Ambassador
    Spock had managed to acquire the
    so-called Planet Killer from the
    storage facility at Epsilon Sigma,
    and were finally successful in
    using it to destroy the cube.

    BACCO
    (quiet, haunted)
    Loss of life?

    ROSS (screen)
    Unknown as yet, ma’am. However,
    one loss is confirmed by Professor
    Hansen - Admiral Kathryn Janeway,
    formerly of the starship Voyager.​


    Bacco digests this with quiet dignity. While everyone else is crying or holding their head in their hands or otherwise expressing their grief, Bacco is holding it together. And Vaughn has his eyes firmly on Bacco. Eventually...


    BACCO
    Admiral, thank you for letting me
    know. Please tell Esperanza I’ll be
    returning to Earth immediately.
    And I’m going to want to have a
    chat with whoever was running
    Starfleet when I get there.

    ROSS (screen)
    Understood, ma’am. Palais out.​


    The signal drops. Bacco sniffles her tears away and turns to Vaughn, who meets her gaze with sympathy.


    BACCO
    Captain, if I could impose upon you...?

    VAUGHN
    Without hesitation, ma’am.​


    Bacco turns and heads towards the turbolift, Phiri and Wexler by her side.


    BACCO
    Ashanté, contact the governor and
    make my apologies. Duty calls.

    PHIRI
    Understood, ma’am.​


    Meanwhile Vaughn approaches the Sisko family.


    VAUGHN
    It’s up to you, Ben. We can take
    you all with us, or...

    SISKO
    I think we’ll stay here for the
    moment, Elias. If you could just
    transport us back down...

    VAUGHN
    As you wish. Lieutenant ch’Thane
    will escort you to the nearest
    transporter room.​


    After a cursory check by Wexler, the small party enters the turbolift - Bacco and her people, the Sisko family, Shar.


    BACCO
    Captain, I’ll be in my quarters
    if you need me.​


    The door closes and they are gone. Vaughn turns to Rogeiro.


    VAUGHN
    Commander, recall all crew to
    stations. Set course for Earth at
    maximum warp as soon as we get
    clearance from Cestus control.

    ROGEIRO
    Aye sir.​


    As Vaughn turns to enter his ready room, Rogeiro snaps orders to the crew, breaking them out of their horror.


    ROGEIRO
    Dunlop, send the recall signal
    immediately. T’Larik, set course
    for Earth. Magrone, communicate
    with Cestus control and request
    priority one clearance.​


    They do as they are told.


    20 INT. KIRK - TRANSPORTER ROOM


    Sisko, Kasidy, Jake, Rena and Shar enter the room. Shar nods for the ENSIGN on duty to leave her station - she does. Alone now, Shar turns to the Sisko family.


    SHAR
    I am sorry for what has happened.

    SISKO
    We’ll be fine, Lieutenant.

    SHAR
    To see one’s home in danger... it
    is a terrible thing. But that is why
    we do what we do. To protect it
    to the best of our ability.​


    Sisko reaches out and shakes Shar’s hand. Jake does too. Rena grabs him for a quick hug. Then Shar turns to take the transporter control station as the others climb the stage.


    SHAR
    (working controls)
    I am in contact with the Starfleet
    control facility on the surface.
    They are ready to receive you.

    SISKO
    Energise, Lieutenant.​


    He does, and the Sisko family disappear in a TRANSPORTER beam. Shar watches them go...


    21 EXT. SPACE - PLANETARY ORBIT


    The Kirk moves out of orbit from the planet below, leaving the president’s small fleet of support vessels behind.

    Once it is clear, the Kirk jumps to WARP.


    22 EXT. SPACE - THE KIRK


    The ship flies at maximum warp, the stars streaking by...


    23 INT. KIRK - CAPTAIN’S READY ROOM


    Vaughn sits behind his desk in his personal space, thinking hard about everything that has happened. After a few moments of silence, the door CHIME sounds.


    VAUGHN
    Come in.​


    The door opens and Bacco is there, Wexler just behind her. As she steps through the door, Vaughn stands to greet her.


    VAUGHN
    Thank you for agreeing to speak
    with me, Madam President.​


    She nods subtly to Wexler, who steps back, allowing the door to close. Vaughn and Bacco are now alone. He after-you’s her to the couch. As they both take it...


    BACCO
    You know, Captain, a woman in
    my position is not accustomed
    to being summoned.

    VAUGHN
    Oh, please don’t misunderstand,
    ma’am. I’m sure my problems
    must be very low down your list
    right now. So I appreciate any
    scant moments you can spare.

    BACCO
    What’s this about, Captain?

    VAUGHN
    Well...
    (hesitates, stands)
    Where are my manners - can I get
    you anything from the replicator?

    BACCO
    I’m fine, thank you.

    VAUGHN
    Are you sure? It’s no trouble.

    BACCO
    Okay then yes. There is one thing
    I’d like - I’d like you to stop
    dithering and get to the point.​


    Vaughn smiles and sits back down. This is the president.


    VAUGHN
    Madam President, I feel the need
    to... I suppose “confess” is the
    only appropriate word.

    BACCO
    I’m nobody’s priest, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    No. But whether you know it or
    not, I have wronged you. And
    I wish to apologise for that.

    BACCO
    I’m rarely unaware when someone
    doesn’t like me, Captain. But I
    also rarely make the mistake
    of giving a damn.

    VAUGHN
    Nor should you. The fact is this.
    When you were first elected,
    I... I didn’t trust you.

    BACCO
    Why?

    VAUGHN
    That’s what I’ve been asking of
    myself. Trying to understand why
    I reacted so badly. The fact that
    you were a relative newcomer on
    the astro-political scene. No terms
    served on the council. Going from
    responsibility for just one “small”
    world -
    (Bacco bristles)
    - on the outskirts of Federation
    space to responsibility for more
    than one-hundred-fifty of them.
    And this sudden change right on
    the heels of the first resignation
    of a sitting president in the
    Federation’s history -

    BACCO
    If this is your version of an
    apology, Captain...

    VAUGHN
    I’m sorry, you’re right. I think
    it comes from my training.

    BACCO
    You mean your eighty years in
    intelligence and special ops.
    (off Vaughn’s
    surprise)
    My staff is very thorough.

    VAUGHN
    Yes, that’s exactly what I mean.
    I consider myself an expert in
    spotting lies, having had so much
    experience at telling them myself.
    Unfortunately, that has led more
    than once to me expecting everyone
    to be a liar. A good friend warned
    me off that path only last year...
    and I stepped right back on it.

    BACCO
    Captain... I don’t care if you don’t
    like me. I’m sure you’re not the
    only one, but I have too much to
    get done to waste my energy
    worrying about it.

    VAUGHN
    I’m afraid there’s more to it than
    that, ma’am. I realise that what
    I’m about to say may well count
    as treason, and if you wish to call
    for my resignation or arrest, I’ll
    surrender without protest. But you
    should know that in my mistrust,
    I used my resources, my eighty
    years of intelligence training, as
    you say... to investigate you.​


    Bacco slowly gets to her feet, takes a few steps away. She is not angry - or at least not openly so.


    BACCO
    You’re a brave man, Captain.

    VAUGHN
    My training taught me to be on my
    guard against all threats to the
    Federation - from without and
    from within.

    BACCO
    And you thought I was that threat?
    Is that what your investigations
    told you?

    VAUGHN
    Until recently, my investigations
    were... inconclusive.

    BACCO
    (realises)
    You arranged to be my transport to
    Cestus... so you could watch me?

    VAUGHN
    Yes, ma’am. And I’m glad I did.

    BACCO
    Why?

    VAUGHN
    Because, to quote young Mister
    Sisko... I changed my mind. Seeing
    the people who you governed for so
    many years missing you, wanting
    you back. Seeing how you would
    share a drink with a Gorn to keep
    your people safe. And seeing how
    you held yourself together in the
    face of unimaginable slaughter and
    tragedy, despite what it must have
    cost you... I changed my mind.

    BACCO
    (deadpan)
    I’m honoured.​


    Vaughn also stands, approaches her, hoping to mend fences.


    VAUGHN
    I also wanted you to know that all
    those resources, all my years of
    intelligence and experience... I now
    offer them to you. I no longer doubt.
    I no longer distrust. I am yours
    to command, Madam President.​


    As the two veterans stare each other down...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT FOUR
     
  8. DS9Continuing

    DS9Continuing Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    Manchester
    ACT FIVE


    FADE IN


    24 EXT. SPACE - PLANETARY ORBIT


    This time the Kirk is in orbit of an identifiable blue-green-white world - Earth.

    As we PAN around from this view, we see a massive FIELD OF DEBRIS in Earth orbit - both Borg and Starfleet. Tiny work bee vessels are picking through the debris, searching for survivors or useful salvage.


    25 INT. KIRK - MAIN SHUTTLE BAY


    Vaughn and Lieutenant Magrone are there to see Bacco off. A RUNABOUT has been prepared for them.


    VAUGHN
    It was a genuine pleasure to be
    able to spend this time with you,
    Madam President. Please know that
    you’re always welcome on the Kirk.

    BACCO
    It’s certainly been an interesting
    experience, Captain. But right now
    I think I’m needed at home.

    VAUGHN
    Weren’t you just at home, ma’am?

    BACCO
    Captain, Cestus may be my home,
    and Berengaria may be yours.
    But Earth is all of our homes.​


    Vaughn smiles. She has a point there. Wexler pops his head out of the open runabout hatch.


    WEXLER
    We’re ready to go, ma’am.

    BACCO
    Right behind you, Steven.​


    Bacco follows Wexler back into the runabout. With her out of earshot, Lieutenant Magrone steps up to Vaughn.


    MAGRONE
    Sir, I was wondering - is it your
    intent that I scan the president
    during this journey? Because if
    so, I would like to make it clear
    that I would only follow those
    orders under extreme protest.

    VAUGHN
    No need, Lieutenant. I shan’t be
    giving those orders. Take good
    care of the president, please.

    MAGRONE
    Happily, sir.​


    Magrone follows the president into the runabout, and soon after, its hatch closes, and the runabout powers up.

    Vaughn steps back, letting the runabout LIFT OFF from the deck, slowly move towards the FORCE FIELD out onto open space, pass through with an electric FIZZ and move off.

    That done, Vaughn looks around the giant shuttlebay.


    VAUGHN
    Vaughn to bridge.

    ROGEIRO (comm)
    Go ahead, sir.

    VAUGHN
    The president has left the Kirk.
    Please contact orbital control and
    offer the services of our many
    auxiliary vessels in salvaging
    that debris field out there. They
    need all the help we can give.

    ROGEIRO (comm)
    Understood, sir.

    VAUGHN
    In the meantime, I’ll be occupied
    in holodeck one. Please see that
    I’m not disturbed. Vaughn out.​


    Vaughn walks towards the exit.


    26 INT. KIRK - CORRIDOR


    Vaughn strides along the corridor, nodding polite greetings to the occasional crew who cross his path. He turns a corner and comes upon the double HOLODECK doors...


    27 INT. KIRK - HOLODECK (CONTINUOUS)


    Much like Voyager’s holodecks. Vaughn strides in, allowing the doors to close behind him.


    VAUGHN
    Computer, seal the doors, no
    interruptions. Authorisation
    Vaughn nine-epsilon-one-
    eight-purple.​


    The computer BEEPS affirmatively, followed by a heavy CLUNK of locking doors.


    VAUGHN
    Now create a multi-directional
    subspace holographic link-up
    according to program Vaughn
    three-one-alpha.

    COMPUTER
    Working.​


    Vaughn strolls the empty holodeck while waiting for the computer to do its work. After a few moments...


    COMPUTER
    Connection established.

    VAUGHN
    Activate.​


    With another BEEP from the computer, a pair of holographic figures materialise onto the otherwise empty holodeck grid - Admiral MARTA BATANIDES and Commander RO LAREN.


    BATANIDES
    Elias? Is everything alright? I
    wasn’t expecting to hear from
    you today, considering.

    VAUGHN
    I appreciate your time, Marta. I’m
    sure Starfleet Command is busy.
    But I have news regarding our
    mutual suspicions.

    RO
    Is this a secure connection? Can
    we talk freely?

    VAUGHN
    It’s as secure as I can make it,
    Laren. Why, is there a problem?

    RO
    Only that I had to kick Morn out
    of a holosuite on a moment’s
    notice. I’m sure he’s talking
    Quark’s ear off about it right
    now. And Quark’s wondering why.
    Don’t worry, I can handle them.

    VAUGHN
    To business then. I’ve now had the
    opportunity to spend time with the
    object of our concerns, and I’ve
    come to the conclusion that we’ve
    been going about this all wrong.

    BATANIDES
    What does that mean?

    VAUGHN
    She’s blunt. Impolitic. Aware of
    her own strengths. But she’s not
    the threat we took her to be.

    BATANIDES
    Elias, my instincts rarely fail
    me. They were involved in this.
    You know as well as I do their
    fingerprints are all over it.

    VAUGHN
    I don’t deny it, not for a moment.
    But I do not believe that she was a
    willing participant. I don’t believe
    she even knows they exist.

    RO
    I’ve made some enquiries into my
    own target at this end. Honestly,
    I haven’t spotted anything out of
    place here either. I was starting
    to think you were imagining it.

    VAUGHN
    I may well have been, at least for
    your part in this. If we go with
    the idea that my own target was
    not directly involved, then it
    follows that yours wasn’t either.

    BATANIDES
    Elias, please - I know what I’m
    talking about. Something is rotten
    in the Palais de la Concorde.

    VAUGHN
    I believe you, Marta. But she is
    not it. I’m certain of that.

    BATANIDES
    What does your reporter friend
    have to say about it?

    VAUGHN
    I haven’t heard from her in some
    weeks. I’m not sure whether to
    take that as a problem, or if
    she’s just busy doing her job.

    RO
    So then what do we do now?

    VAUGHN
    The investigation isn’t over. We
    just come at it from a different
    angle. If Section Thirty-One were
    involved in the election of a new
    president, but without that new
    president being party to it, then
    this goes deeper than we thought.
    So, we have to go deeper too.

    BATANIDES
    Anything concrete, Elias?

    VAUGHN
    You trust your instincts, Marta.
    So do I. So follow them. Let
    them take you to the truth. I
    have no doubt that they will.

    RO
    What about me? What can I do?

    VAUGHN
    Just be on standby in case I need
    you. But I suspect I won’t.

    BATANIDES
    (sudden thought)
    You didn’t tell her what we think,
    did you? God, Elias, please tell
    me you didn’t let her in on it.

    VAUGHN
    I did not. And I don’t intend to.
    She’s a good woman, Marta - the
    kind of woman we need in that
    office. I believe that without
    equivocation. And I’d rather not
    dirty that with what we know.

    BATANIDES
    I hope you’re right, Elias.

    RO
    Me too.

    BATANIDES
    Because if you’re not, we just
    welcomed a criminal into the most
    powerful office in the Federation.
    And then we let her stay there.

    VAUGHN
    Both of you, please just keep
    your eyes and ears open. I will
    too. And stay in touch.

    RO
    Fine. Signing off, then, I guess.​


    Ro’s image dissolves into nothingness. Batanides’ image lingers for a moment, her expression a clear warning to Vaughn. Then she too disappears.

    Vaughn is left standing alone, abandoned on the empty holodeck grid...


    FADE OUT


    END OF SHOW