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Mauretania: The Imperial Battle by Tim Traas

Chapter 1: Not my kind of homecoming

After the Dominion War the border of the Federation had changed. A rebel Empire formed in what was once the Cardassian DMZ. Now the Empire rules all colonies with an iron hand. The Federation, now too weak to help them, asked the leaders of the Empire to come to some kind of agreement to help the colonies. So far no responses on any of their efforts. Now after a mission of 10 years the Raven class starship Mauretania returns to find themselves coming home to a new Federation.

"Richard, the sensors aren't picking up any Cardassian or Federation patrols near the DMZ." George Marshall, the ship's second man said and was pushing like a mad man on the console.

"Strange, and my readings reveal unknown warp signatures in this part of space, they're neither Federation nor Cardassian." Richard King the captain of the Mauretania said and walked over to George.

On that moment sounds where heard all over the bridge and some lights began the flash. The ship went over to red alert.

"Richard, two unknown battleships are moving closer to us, they are armed with heavy disruptors and some kind of upgraded photon torpedoes. They're on an intercept course and have locked weapons and raised shields." George said while he jumped over to the tactical console.

The unknown ships opened fire at the Raven class ship. They fired green colored disruptor beams.

"Two hits to the port power coupling and we lost power on deck 2. Shields are holding at 87%." Richard yelled while the console next of him blew up.

The Mauretania moved closer to the first ship and with full impulse. She was faster and found a way to get above the ship and open fire with her two Mark 4 pulse disruptor cannons attached to the warp nacelles. But the other unknown ship fired at the same moment on the Mauretania's bridge. On the bridge a bulkhead exploded and the view screen was on fire.

"She can't take much more of this" Richard nodded as his control panel winked on and off before this eyes.

"I have got a lock on the command ship, standing by to fire torpedoes, hold on to something. This can go wrong." George yelled and pushed the control button.

The Mauretania moved across the lead ship and fired her forward and aft Model 2 photon torpedo tubes and phasers and she moved away before the ship exploded in two because of the damage from the weapons.

"Not bad, old girl" Captain King said and kissed this control console and looked to this console that gave some readings he did not want to read.

The other ship maneuvers closer to the Mauretania and fires her torpedo's. The weapons blow up the left warp nacelle and made a warp plasma leak.

"We lost power to the aft sensors, shields are down to 24%, we lost life-support in the Arboretum, The communications array is destroyed and both Bussard collectors are off-line." Richard yelled while he was putting out a fire.

"Richard weapons control is damaged, I need more power to the shields or they are going to blast us in the space dust". George said hopelessly and looked into the eyes of this friend and captain.

The unknown ship moved with full speed and fired its phasers on the Mauretania, her shield generators and locked a tractor beam on her.

"We can't do anything, we don't have the power to get the engines working again, also the shields are gone without any hope of getting them back on-line soon". Captain Richard King said and sat down with a sad face in this captain's chair.

A few minutes later a men in a black uniform enters the bridge without anything on him, he walks without saying anything to Captain King and looks him deep in the eyes.

"Gentlemen my name is Commander Shearman of the Imperial Homeguard, This ship was traveling in our space, You and this ship are now part of the Imperial Navy." The commander gave Captain King a PADD and pushed a button on this belt and seconds later troops with green uniforms armed with rifles board the bridge.

Both men were taken away by the troops while the commander remained on the bridge in the chair of Captain King.

The Imperial ship used her tractor beam to take the Mauretania into warp. And within a few hours they dropped out of warp near a large earth-like planet. Both Richard King and George Marshall were taken to the Imperial ship this bridge cuffed and under guard by soldiers.

"Welcome gentlemen, to my bridge, I hope you don't mind that you had to wait in the cells, I hope I have not made a bad impression on you." Commander Shearman said with an evil, delighted giggle.

The ship docked with a space station in orbit of the planet. The bridge personal were working as hard as possible to get every system to shutdown. On some of the screens they could see the Mauretania taken away from them by smaller ships.

"What are you doing to my ship" Captain King yelled to the commander and wanted to move closer but was grabbed by the soldiers.

The commander laughed and walked to Captain King. He hit him in the face and sat down in his chair. "Captain, that piece of junk is now a ship in the Imperial Navy and so are you, don't forgot you place" he said and looked at the captain.

On that moment a man with a black and blue uniform appeared on the screen. Commander Shearman jumped out of this chair and went on this left knee with his head down. "Raise, my friend, and report" the man said.

"General Pestage, we have captured a Federation starship, it does not appear to be a battleship but she destroyed our sister ship. We have her crew". The commander looked up and displayed the two men before his general.

General Pestage smiled and closed this eyes. "Commander, you have done well, bring them to my office and return to mission control". The general was gone on the screen and the commander shouted enthusiastically the orders for the troops.

"Captain may honor and luck be with you" the commander gave him a picture of the Mauretania and smiled.

"Thank you commander, and may what god you believe in have mercy on your soul that has blood all over it". Captain King said coldly with the smell of death around him.

"It's going to be alright sir" George said with a warm smile before they were taken away by the soldiers.

They were taken into a shuttle and moved from orbit to the planet surface. When they got close enough to the surface they saw thousands of troops. Also many shuttles where on the surface. Some of them where in the sky just like their shuttle now. Captain King looked out of the window and saw entire army. This hope went to the bottom of this feet and he closed this eyes for a few seconds.

The shuttle landed on the roof of some old building. The troops opened up the shuttle and Richard King and George Marshall where escorted out. The soldiers on the roof had blue uniforms and where armed with pistols. One of the men walked to the Captain and took the cuffs off of him and later George. Moments later the General walked towards them. Both men felt fear for the first time after 10 years in action.

Chapter 2: A ship too far

Near the border of the new Empire and the Federation the Ambassador class USS Devonshire was patrolling. Under command of Captain Ruud Von Reier she was traveling her daily patrol mission. They where checking out what happened to one of the sensor probes near the border that did not report in as well.

"Sir, sensors located the probe adrift on our side of the border, she must have been hit by something because her hull is damaged and she lost all power" The first officer reported to Captain Von Reier.

The Captain looked to the data on his screen. Their was not a sound made on the bridge and it looked like wisdom was floating to the captain. "All station go to yellow alert and prepare to beam the probe onboard" the captain looked to his first officer. "I want to find out what happened with that probe within before the next hour" The captain walked to this ready room.

On the planet George was taken away and Captain King was left with the general walking with him to his office. Nearly every door was guarded by soldiers. King had never seen anything like this and was left outgunned and outsmart.

"Captain, what is your name" the general asked and looked to the captain before he asked the soldiers to leave.

"My name is Richard King, Captain of the starship Mauretania" the captain said with relief when the soldiers were away.

"I'm aware that you're not officers of Starfleet and your ship is more an upgraded science vessel, than the next generation smart battle cruisers, but you crossed our borders and you did not surrender to our patrols, normally that would give you a minimum of 30 years work in the mines of Corodom. But you're not part of Starfleet so that is in your favor". The general pointed out and walked in to this office with the captain right behind him.

"General, with all due respect, wWe just came back from a ten year mission, the borders have changed and on our maps this part of space would be the Cardassian, Federation DMZ". The captain said with some hope in this voice that the general would listen.

Onboard the USS Devonshire the first officer walked in to the ready room. "Captain, the sensors of the probe show that it was hit by a mark 12 Imperial torpedo. Also just before she was knocked out two ships attacked a Federation Raven class starship. The S.S. Mauretania I believe". The first officer explained to his captain with the PADD in this hand.

"Contact Starfleet Command, tell them I'm prepared to take the ship in Imperial space and help the Mauretania." Captain Von Reier instructed his first officer and looked out of the window.

On the planet General Pestage did not answer the captain's pleas for help and he ordered the troops to take him away. The general beamed from his office to the Mauretania to see what she could do in the fleet. The general did not want this ship to be turned a cargo ship. Onboard the ship was Senior Major Sam Williams, the Imperial tactical designer of the fleet.

"Senior Major, what do you think this bucket can do". The general said with a smile on this face the moment he sat down in the captain's chair.

"Most of her systems are working in top condition, the database was last updated 8.4 months ago, she was damaged during the battle but that can be fixed within a matter of days, her engines are not in top shape anymore and most of the upgraded sensors are coded by security systems." Senior Major Williams pointed out coldly.

"I want her repaired within 24 hours from this moment". The general ordered and beamed back to his office.

In the prison cell the two officers were waiting and talking about what the general had said. Both men hoped they could find a way to escape. The cells where guarded by 5 soldiers and force fields.

On the USS Devonshire Captain Von Reier was talking with Admiral Janeway about their options. Both agreed that the Mauretania needed to be rescued since there was no accord of any kind. The Devonshire was authorized to cross the border and help the Mauretania. When the admiral was gone, the captain jumped out of his chair and walked to the bridge. "Senior officers, report to the briefing room and go to red alert".

On the planet the soldiers were ordered to report to the general and to leave the men alone for a few minutes. The force fields would them for that time. Just minutes after the soldiers left an unknown man in uniform entered the cells. "Captain King, I believe you are" the men said and looked behind him scarred.

"Indeed my name is King, Richard King". King barked to the unknown men.

"I'm a Starfleet officer working for Section 31. Around here I play the much loved and powerful Senior Major Sam Williams." He said and gave the captain something when he got the force field off-line. "Gentlemen I'm doing everything in my power to help you, but your ship is too damaged to be used so you're going to be here for a couple of days".

On that moment the soldiers returned and Senior Major Sam Williams found a way out the garbage service door. He walked away but was not aware that a secret camera had record his every move. The general in his office watched the recording and a large smile formed in this face. His eyes filled with evil joy.

"Order the good Commander Shearman to let the Senior Major fix our new starship and then kill him". The general ordered and looked with a big grin.

Commander Shearman received the order through a secret courier and he smiled as well. This dream would become reality. He had always wanted the position of power that the Senior Major held. Shearman left the room and walked to his armory to get a weapon for the job.

The USS Devonshire moved closer to the border. After some scans the ship went to maximum warp, heading for the last know location of the Mauretania. Captain Von Reier was sitting in his captain's chair with a PADD picture of the Mauretania in his hand.

"Tactical, prepare onboard drills and tactical scenarios, this ship needs to be ready for combat and boarding." The captain looked to his first officer who nodded that he agreed with his captain and then he took a deep breath. "Also prepare five torpedoes to be used to destroy the Mauretania if that should be necessary."

In the cells Richard King and George Marshall managed to locate a weak spot in the force field. King took out a secret piece of metal out of his shoe and took a deep breath. He smiled at George and pushed it with all of his power against the force field. The piece exploded the moment it hit the field and shorted the force field generators. "That's how I like this prison, in pieces!" Captain King said. He hit the guard in the face and took his rifle.

King opened fire at three more soldiers who had kicked open the security door. George jumped back, took the pistol from the soldier at his feet and started firing too. He hit two of them. But just when he and the last soldier were aiming at each other and he was pulling the trigger, suddenly Captain King raised directly in front of George. The captain fell and a stream of blood ran down his back. George took the next opportunity to shoot the soldier and helped his captain up. The captain smiled while he took his last breath, trying to say something. But a second later he closed his eyes and all of his life-force went out of the man. George called out his name in rage and despair.

George had a hard time to stay clear-headed. He could not take the body of this captain with him. He jumped out of the remains of the cells shooting at more arriving soldiers with the rifle he took from the dead body of the captain. George shot this way out of the building and when he was outside he could see the sun. It immediately began burning his skin, and his eyes started to hurt. "There must be something wrong with me or this sun is really hot!" George said and started to run to the shadow.

The same moment George saw a shuttle land on some kind of platform. He opened fire on the people that came out of the craft. He pushed the bodies away from the door and entered the cockpit. The controls where based on old style Federation consoles. He sat down in the pilot seat and took of. "Captain it's time to see what revenge is all about" He called out in rage as he pushed the weapons button and fired series of missiles on the prison.

On that moment some kind of alarm went off and scanners showed fighters on their way to George this location. He pushed some buttons and took off. The only hope was to get to get close to the Mauretania and hope they did not find the programming for the upgraded shuttle.

Chapter 3: The grand illusion

George looked at all the monitors and saw only data that he did not want to see. The fighters where getting closer to his shuttlecraft. He did everything to shake them off. But this shuttle was not a fast model and after checking its weapons systems no match for the fighters. George could only bluff his way out. He pushed some buttons on the subspace radio device onboard the shuttle.

"The new commanding officer of the starship Mauretania speaking here. I have a subspace ion bomb ready to fire. If you open fire on this shuttle I will blow it up and kill everybody within 12 kilometers" he said icily while looking at his monitors.

For a moment it seemed like it did not work. But some seconds after the hail the fighters moved away and the shuttle was left alone. George looked up and said "Thank you Captain". He pushed the buttons and got closer to orbit. During his scans he found out that a transport was leaving the planet with 3 humans onboard.

In the meantime the USS Devonshire had been located by Imperial starships and she was making herself ready for battle. "Captain to the crew. Two Imperial patrol ships are on intercept course. Prepare for battle and let's be careful out there." The captain said with a natural leadership in his voice.

The ships moved with full impulse speed towards the hull of the Devonshire. They both turned and went closer the second time. They did not fire. On the bridge of the Devonshire everyone was worried about this high risk if not suicide attack maneuvers. "Sir, no shield damage, they are getting closer to the shield every second". The chief tactical officer reported with a sign of fear in his voice.

The ships then made a run for the bridge and opened fire with torpedoes. The torpedoes did not penetrate the shields but caused some damage to the bridge. The Devonshire fired their forward phasers and moved away from the vessels. Coming back at full impulse, she fired both forward photon torpedo tubes. The first patrol ship was left damaged and the second was moving away.

"Captain, shields are down to 90%, we lost power on decks 2, 5 and 9". The first officer reported as he dropped out of his chair.

"Helm, set course 833 mark 32. Tactical, keep tactical phasers at full power. Take our shields off-line for 3 seconds and then take them back on-line. Operations, make it look like our deflector is damaged" The captain shouted out and walked towards the helm station.

The enemy ships changed course towards the Devonshire again. The captain looked on his view screen and hoped this gamble would turn out in his favor. The ships moved closer and closer. Before they could fire, Captain Von Reier nodded and his tactical officer fired their Phasers on both ships. One of the ships exploded and the other was damaged and moved away at full warp.

"Good work, people now let's find our starship and get ourselves out of this mess" The captain said and smiled towards his bridge crew and then gave this first officer a hand.

On the planet George opened fire on the transport destroying the ship's engines. The shuttle was equipped with a transporter, so George beamed the humans onboard and moved away from the transport. It was a group of young people. 2 females and 1 man badly beaten up.

In the office of General Pestage the general was looking at the report on this desk. He turned his head away to the window and then started to yell. After picking up his rifle and called in the young officer that had brought him the report. The man walked in and before he could say anything he was hit ruthlessly and senselessly by a blast from the general's weapon. "Kill the messenger". The general yelled and walked out his office.

"Order my ship to prepare to leave and call Commander Shearman. Tell him he needs to kill Williams now!" he yelled at his officers. Then he entered the lift and left for the roof.

In the shuttle George had found asistance in ex-Starfleet cadet Lynn Veers. "Sir, there are fighters on their way, they outgun us and they're closing fast." The young Veers said to George with obvious fear and hopelessness.

"Got her, George started to smile as he pushed some buttons. At full thruster speed the shuttle reached orbit, approaching a shipyard. The shipyard defense phasers fired and missed every time. The shuttle got closer and, with help from Veers, George established a computer link with the Mauretania.

The shuttle bay of the Mauretania opened and two automated shuttles left the bay firing on the shipyard and moving at full speed towards the fighters. The manned shuttle docked in the bay. George jumped out and shot a surprised soldier on his way to the bridge.

The bridge was empty and nearly all repairs were completed. He wanted to start the engines and saw the body of Senior Major Sam Williams on the floor. The man had been killed with a weapon, that much was clear. George had a strong feeling that the killer was still onboard. When Rebecca Ramsey reported to the bridge she took the helm station.

"Alright girls, it's time to see what this old baby got left in her before she is blown into a thousand pieces" George said to the girls with relief in this voice. He sealed the bridge with force fields and hoped that the killer would leave the ship.

The Mauretania fired her only forward phaser, destroying the gun tower on the shipyard, and moved away. She was a few thousand yards away from the shipyard when she was fired upon from the general's ship. It was a large command ship.

"We lost our aft backup sensors and shields are down to 85%. Sickbay reports that their plasma is leaking and Mr. Roger Ramsey is asking for a mop and a bucket."

George smirked and could not keep the laugh in him.

The general restlessly continued this attack on the Mauretania. On his bridge he controlled the weapons himself from this chair and a grin emerged from his face every time he scored a direct hit on the Mauretania.

But then the Mauretania came round and fired torpedoes on the main deflector of the general's ship. The general nearly fell off his chair.

"Nice shot, Veers!" George cheered while he ducked for the explosion of one of the monitors behind him. The bridge was damaged and reports were coming in from all computer sections on nearly every deck.

"She can't take this any longer Sir. The shields are down to 20% and we lost our thrusters, also we have fire on decks 3 and 4." Veers shouted back and was thrown against the wall a second later.

The general fired torpedoes knocking out the Mauretania's shields and weapons. He came right over the ship and opened a channel. "My dear friends, the battle has ended and you lost. Because of the death of some of my dear officers you're going to join them in what you Earth people call hell." The general said with his usual grin.

The same moment the Devonshire came out of nowhere, turned around and began to fire on the command ship of the general.

On the general's bridge the systems were knocked out and the shields were so damaged that the hull begun to rupture on other decks. "Blast! This is why I hate the Federation," the general yelled out and gave the order to abandon ship.

On the Mauretania everybody looked at the view screen when the general surrendered his forces and the USS Devonshire came closer to them.

"Sir we are safe I believe" Lynn Veers shouted out in joy and relief.

"We are -- and good work everybody, thanks to you." George could not find the words and sat down in the chair of his old captain. A tear came out of his left eye and he blushed as he wondered if anyone would notice that.

Captain Ruud Von Reier beamed onto the bridge. "Sorry for the surprising visit, but you did not respond to hails." The captain said and gave George a hand.

"Welcome onboard the Mauretania" George said and led the captain to the briefing room. And just before they entered George suddenly took out his phaser and shot at something. Commander Shearman fell down from the wall. "Next time don't make me angry again." George said and walked into the briefing room.

Both the Mauretania and the Devonshire left together towards Federation space at Warp 3, after negotiating with Starfleet Command and the Imperial government. With General Pestage in the Devonshire brig for the murder on Captain Richard King.

Chapter 4: The end

After the Mauretania was safe in Federation space she was refitted and repaired. Starfleet traded the data from the ten-year mission for that and some supplies. Starfleet also gave the Mauretania a new database and she was back in shape in no time. Three months after the refit she was taken out into space again under the command of George Marshall. With a new crew at his side. They created their own uniform style and they were ready to go out there.

"Everybody who services on this ship has got the honor to be here. This ship is going to be our home. I'm not a Starfleet captain and you may suggest anything. We need to work together as a team to make it. Let's make records." George said in his new uniform. He sat down with honor in the new chair on his bridge.

"Course locked for adventure, sir" The new first officer Lynn Veers said with a smile on her face and her hands on the console.

"Helm ready when you are" Rebecca Ramsey, the helm and science officer, replied.

"Engineering ready for the old warp speed" Roger Ramsey's voice said on over the com system.

The Mauretania left for open space. She went away on maximum warp towards the next planet visible on her sensors.

 

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Last modified: 10 Apr 2012 
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