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Star Trek Trio: The Maquis Revenge - Part I by Paul Redford

Key Events - Chapter 1 - Chapter 2 - Chapter 3 - Chapter 4 - Chapter 5 - Chapter 6 - Chapter 7 - Chapter 8 - Chapter 9 - Chapter 10

 

Key Events Before the Year 2380

Year 2375

Year 2376

Year 2377

Year 2378

Year 2379

 

Chapter 1

The USS Kennedy hung in space like a spider hanging from its web. In orbit of Starbase 471 the USS Kennedy was waiting for her next assignment. A Sovereign Class Starship, the USS Kennedy was one of Starfleetís proudest creations.

The door from his ready room opened and in walked Captain Tom Paris. The young man was looking down at his feet, he brought his hand up to his head and scratched his blonde hair and rubbed his pale blue eyes. He was still tired from a late night of reading system reports and many other ship reports. With a yearís experience at Starfleetís Tactical College Captain Paris was given command of the Kennedy after seeing the construction of her and her maiden voyage, Tom Paris knew his ship like the back of his hand. He did not like commanding a ship far from his wife and daughter back on Earth but he had a job to do. With the Federation gaining new defensive technology from the future, the Federation Security has been top priority. He stayed on with Starfleet after his father asked him to stay on and he did not want to let down his father.

Captain Paris walked on to the bridge. The bridge on the Kennedy was different then any other typical Sovereign-class bridge, instead of the red and gold finishing the Kennedy had the silver and sky blue finishing. The doors to exit the Bridge were a dark navy blue and made the bridge feel more comfortable.

Paris looked up and saw his first officer moving out of the command seat and sat in his own. Commander Michael Johnson, a young man a few years younger than Paris, but he was a damn fine first officer. Michael was tall, had short black hair and was very bright for a human. Captain Paris came over and sat in his command chair. Sitting in the chair on his left was the shipís counsellor: Lieutenant Heather Turner. This was the counsellorís second starship assignment, born half Human and half Trill, she had come first in her class at the Betazoid Counselling Academy and second at Starfleet Medical Academy, she was the best.

"Report Michael. Any word from Fleet Admiral Nechayev?" asked Paris.

"Not a word, yet." replied Johnson.

"This is ridiculous, we have been sent here to be given an assignment and yet nothing. We are the most advanced starship in the entire fleet and here we are doing nothing." Captain Paris hated waiting, he would like to be on an adventure. But waiting was all he could do.

Captain Janeway was walking down the corridor of the Utopia Plantia shipyards. She was heading for the docking port where her ship was waiting for her. For the last two years the USS Voyager had been docked here being refitted, having all the technology from the Delta Quadrant being scanned and poked, and today was the day. Voyager was calling out to her asking her to return to the stars with her. Voyager was put back on the active role and her first assignment in the Alpha quadrant was to begin. Captain Janeway was in her new uniform. She did not like this one it was too tight. She found herself repeatedly on tugging on her shirt. Jean-Luc had told her she would get used to it but she was not too sure. Near the door to the docking port there stood Captain Picard, her friend.

"Kathryn." Said Picard.

"Jean-Luc." Replied Captain Janeway, she put her arm around him and gave him a pat on the back. Her first assignment back in the Alpha Quadrant was going to be a joint one with Picard. Both the Enterprise and Voyager were going to share the mission. Janeway followed Picard in to the airlock and the door opened to her old ship, Voyager. Janeway took a deep breath in and the she knew she was home.

Standing near the airlock was her new Chief-Engineer Lieutenant Commander Reginald Barclay. Reg had been in charge of Voyagerís refit, she trusted no one else to look after her ship as he was the best.

"Welcome aboard Captains." Spoke Barclay.

"Thankyou Reg." Replied Janeway.

"Mr Barclay, it has been a while." Said Picard. Picard extended his hand to shake the commanderís hand, Reg extended his hand and they shook.

"If you follow me I will show you around. Is there anywhere you would like to go first, Captain Janeway?" asked Reg.

Captain Janeway did not hear him say anything - she was to busy looking around. The carpet had been changed along with many other things. But she was home.

"Kathryn, you ok?" inquired Captain Picard, He had put his hand on her shoulder and she turned around.

"Yes, everything is fine. Itís great to be back." She replied.

"Well, then would you like to see the bridge first, captain?" Asked Reg.

"Of course, lets go." Answered Janeway.

All three of them entered the turbolift and Commander Barclay said: "Deck one."

The Turbolift hummed and began to move upwards. Janeway could fill the many changes that had been done to Voyager already. The turbolift hum was much quieter and it was a much smoother ride than she was used to. The turbolift stopped and the doors opened, that was another thing she had noticed Voyagerís doors were instead of being the dark silver they were a dark red much like the ones on the Enterprise.

This was it, she thought, her new bridge on her old ship. Barclay walked out first followed by Captain Picard and then Captain Janeway walked out and saw her new bridge.

"Captain on the bridge." Shouted Barclay. Picard stepped aside to let Janeway see everyone. The entire bridge crew was standing to attention. She looked around. There were many faces she recognised but a few she did not. The bridge had also changed a lot but she noticed her chair had not. Then he caught her eye. Standing next to her chair was the man who stood by her side for seven years. Chakotay.

"At ease everyone, carry on." He spoke. "Itís good to see you again, Kathryn."

She walked over to him and opened her arms to give a big hug. It was so good to see him again she thought.

"How the hell did you get here? She asked. She took her hands away from him and looked at him.

"I saw that Voyager did not have a first officer yet so I applied for the job and got it." He replied. He was also in the new uniform and she saw he had the three pips he should have on his collar, no longer a provisional officer but a Starfleet officer.

"I thought you and Seven were going to settle down on Alpha Centuri." She expressed.

"Well Seven was asked to return back to Starfleet to help with a new engine and become a Chief Engineer on a starship." He replied, "So I decided to return."

"Itís good to have you here." Janeway said.

Picard walked over to the two of them, followed by Commander Barclay.

"Well, we better get the briefing over and done with." Said Picard "Shall we?"

He pointed his hand to the briefing room and all four of them walked over to the door. The door opened and Janeway looked around nothing had changed except the carpet! Janeway sat in the middle chair with Picard sitting next to her on her right. Chakotay and Barclay walked over to the display, Barclay tapped in a few commands and up come a schematic of Voyager.

"Behold, the new Voyager." Began Barclay. Janeway smiled he reminded her of the time when Tom Paris showed the Delta Flyer to the senior crew.

"Voyager has been up-rated and refitted with some of Starfleet latest technology. With the success of the USS Kennedy, Voyagerís is the one of the first of a number ships along with the Enterprise to get these new systems installed. Voyager has been fitted out with Type twelve phaser arrays, Quantum Torpedoes along with Photon Torpedoes and new torpedo launchers. She has still got the Ablative Armour Generators that you got from the future, Captain Janeway, along with Multi-Regenerative Shielding for back up. Also from the USS Kennedy is the stealth device."

"I thought the stealth device was incompatible with our systems?" asked Janeway.

"Yes it was, but with your return Starfleet has found ways to improve a shipís systems to use the stealth device. Along with the Ablative Armour Generators we know that they are only compatible with Starfleet technology, so the systems were installed. Except for the Transphasic torpedoes which were destroyed under the Temporal Prime Directive. Anyway Voyager has also been given new warp engines. The enhanced warp drive can let Voyager pass through sub-space at higher speeds, without damaging the ship."

"Voyager also has a crew complement of two hundred and four and has the latest Starfleet security technology including enhanced force fields and holo-emitters on every deck, and with a holographic security team, invented by someone we know Kathryn ." Said Chakotay. "Computer activate the AMH and transfer to the Briefing room."

He sizzled in and there standing next to Chakotay and Barclay was a face Janeway could never forget.

"Doctor." Replied Janeway. She stood up from her chair and walked over to him.

"Captain, it is good to see you again." He spoke.

He, like everyone else in the room had the new uniform and looked a tad different.

"What does AMH stand for?" asked Janeway

"It stands for Advanced Medical Hologram. I have been upgraded with all new subroutines and I still have my Command subroutines with a few new ones put in."

Janeway smiled, She thought to herself perhaps taking back command wonít be bad after all.

The siren went off and every crew member on the bridge was rushing around.

"Report!" Captain Paris spoke sitting from his command chair.

"There are five Breen warships detonating tricobalt devices at random positions." Replied Commander Johnson.

"Sir shields are down to forty-three percent." Shouted out Lieutenant Alex Carson, who was the Kennedyís tactical and security officer. A spark blew behind Parisí ear. His ear was ringing like hell. He put a finger in it to stop the ringing but it was not enough. He reached with his right hand to hit his combadge and just said the order he needed to say.

"Bridge to Engineering, Seven deploy armour now." Paris looked up to see if he could see his pilot at the hel,m but he couldnít. There was too much smoke.

Paris got out of his command chair and tried to get himself to the helm.

"Fiona! Fiona! Can you hear me?" he shouted. There was no reply. His foot felt something hit it, or was it him hitting something. He crouched down and looked down. His pilot Lieutenant Fiona Darwin was laying across the deck. Paris saw she had some pretty bad burns, he felt for a pulse but he could not. He took his fingers off her neck again and tried again. He felt it.

"Heather, can you hear me?" he shouted again, the ringing in his ear was getting worse by the minute. "Heather come over here now!"

"Iím coming Captain," Heather replied and was beside Parisí side in no time. "Whatís happened Captain?" she asked her captain

"Fiona needs to be taken to sickbay, can you get her there?" he questioned.

"Of course." She replied. Paris helped her picking up Fiona.

Paris realised that there was no one at the helm. He walked over and sat himself at the helm chair. He looked down at the console. It was filled with dust and debris from different systems exploding and falling down on the console. He dreaded what the rest of ship looked like.

"Seven of Nine to the Bridge, come in." was the voice Paris could only hear. The bridge was up in flames and there was smoke everywhere. He answered her

"Go ahead Seven."

"Captain, hull armour has been deployed but it is down to fifty-eight percent effectiveness." Then another explosion went off on the bridge. Paris could not hear Seven.

"Seven! Seven! Damn." Paris hit his hand on the console. "Michael, Michael can you hear me?" he shouted out.

"Yes Captain?" he replied.

"Michael, I want you to get down to Main Engineering and give Seven a hand. We may need to get out of here by warp" Ordered Paris. Tom could see a silhouette of Michael heading for the turbolift doors.

Tom used his own arm and wiped off the dust and debris from the console and looked at the read outs. The sensors were going hay-wire, he saw that the Kennedy was nearly blind. He had to do something.

"Alex, is there any word from the any of our own ships?"

"No, Sir." Replied Carson

"Ok, Ok. Do we have any weapons?" Paris asked.

"Yes sir, but we are far away from weapons range." Responded Carson.

Paris pressed a few buttons on the console and he saw that that the impulse drive had been damaged but was still operational. But it would take too long to get into weapons range. He tapped another button and up came what he wanted to see. The warp drive was still operational. He knew how he was going to defeat the Breen.

"Alex, can you get a fix on those Breen ships?" asked Paris

"Yes Sir, I have triangulated their position by the energy discharge from there weapons." Answered Carson.

"I see them too. It looks like they still have their weak spot since the Dominion Wars." Said Paris.

Paris taped his commbadge, he knew the comms might be down but he had to tell his crew.

"All hands this is the Captain, prepare to engage the Picard Manoeuvre." Paris looked round to see if he could see Carson, but he could not. He just said what he had to say.

"Alex, the moment we drop out of warp over the lead ship, target that weak spot with three quantums. Iíll bring the Kennedy around to the nearest ship and fire again three torpedoes and the same after and after. Understood Alex?"

"Yes sir." Replied Carson

Paris tapped in a few sequences and took over for manual helm control. He might end ramming the Kennedy with the lead Breen ship or missing them but he had to try. Ready he thought.

"Engaging!" shouted Paris

The Kennedy went to warp and under a second she dropped out and was over the lead ship. The Kennedy fired its torpedoes and the Breen ship was destroyed. The Kennedy turned around and went straight for its next prey. Ship after ship the Breen were losing. But then it came. The last Breen Warship came within point-blank range and let lose and fired its last tri-cobalt torpedo. The Kennedy took heavy damage. Then three bolts of silver hit the Breen warship and it came to an end. A starship flew right through the destroyed ship like a runner crossing a finishing line. A small ship, the USS Rhode Island, a Nova-X Class starship just out of dry-dock under the command of Captain Harry Kim had came to the rescue.

The bridge of the Kennedy was in a mess. The Captain stood up on his bridge, he looked around. Debris was what was left of a proud ship. His face scared with dripping blood and sweat, Paris could feel the pain and the agony in his entire body. He looked at his command chair and walked over to it. He put his hand on the back and knew it was time to leave.

"Get everyone to the escape pods. Its time to leave." Ordered Paris.

He pressed a few commands in his command chair and the computer sounded the signal to everyone else to go. He saw the comms were barely working and he pressed the button.

"This is the Captain, get to the escape pods or the shuttles and get the hell out of range from the Kennedy. Program a course for Starbase 471. Leave everything, we will be back. I promise." Paris looked up and saw everyone leaving the bridge and heading for the exit. He took one more look around and began his walk to leave.

"Donít go anywhere." He said to his ship as he entered the passage way to the pods nearer to the bridge.

"Iím sorry to disturb both, but we have a crisis." Said Admiral Fletcher.

In his officer sat the Admiral behind his desk with both Captains Picard and Janeway sitting in front.

"Whatís going on?" asked Janeway.

"We have received a Starfleet General distress call from Starbase 471. They have been attacked by the Breen. The Breen used long range torpedoes which did heavy damage to the Starbase and to the surrounding ships. The Breen have been destroyed by the USS Kennedy, Captain Parisí ship, but not before a lot of damage was done to the Kennedy. In fact Captain Paris used the Picard manoeuvre to give him the upper hand against the Breen. The USS Rhode Island was able to get there and destroy the last Breen ship, but the Starbase needs reinforcements. The Starbase was put up to be a first line of Defence for Earth along the Breen border, so it is very important for Federation Security." Replied the Admiral.

Both Picard and Janeway looked at each other.

"What happened to the Kennedy? Was it destroyed?" asked Janeway. Janeway was sitting right at the edge of her seat. A member of her family might be dead and she wanted to know.

"No, she was not but Captain Paris got his crew off the ship as she took quite a beating out there. I want you two to lead a small fleet to help with repair and assistance ASAP. Here is a list of starships which will be coming along with your. Note that the USS Nightingale will be coming with you. She is a hospital ship, she needs a lot of protection. Good Luck." Ordered the Admiral and those where his final words.

Picard and Janeway got up and headed for the door.

A fleet of forty-seven ships was assembled. Voyager was at the front while the Enterprise covered the back. The entire fleet departed and all in a blink of an eye went to warp to go and give some needed friends some help.

Paris was the last to leave. He got everyone off the ship first and headed for the Captainís yacht. He got in and activated the helm controls. His headache was getting bigger and bigger, the ringing in his ears was getting louder and every part of his body hurt like mad. His hands were bleeding and he could barely get the ship to leave. The Captainís yacht departed and headed straight for the Starbase. Paris engaged the auto-pilot and sat back. His vision began to fade and before he could do anything he blacked out and not before he saw a ship he knew well, Voyager. He smiled.

Captain Janeway was walking up and down her bridge. The bridge was dark and the red alert lights and siren was going off.

"Affirmative. One life sign detected but very faintly, itís Tom." Reported Chakotay.

"Beam him to sickbay." She ordered

In sickbay Tom Paris re-materialised on the surgical bed. The Doctor rushed over with his medical crew. He looked at the injured captain. His face was not the one he remembered, not the cheeky grin but a man in distress. His face was torn apart, blood was everywhere, his uniform was burnt. The Doctor began his work on his friend to save him.

 

Chapter 2

"Captainís Log, stardate 59752.8. It has now been three hours since the Enterprise along with Voyager and a number of other Starfleet ships arrived after the attack on Starbase 471. I already have spoken to Starfleet Command and the Federation Council, they have agreed that this is an act of war. Also I have already received confirmation from Ambassador Worf on the Klingon Homeworld that Chancellor Martok is standing by to assist the Federation if military action is to be taken. The Federation awaits word from the Romulans."

Kathryn Janeway walked down the corridor of her starship heading towards sickbay. It had been three hours since Voyager beamed Captain Paris over after finding him adrift in his captainís yacht. Kathryn was in a hurry to get to sickbay after the Doctor had insisted on her presence, she knew from the tone of his voice she had to be there. A few crewmembers passed and nodded to her. They, like her, had a hand-held phaser strapped to their waists. In times of war Starfleet crews had to protect themselves in case their ship was ever boarded. She arrived at the door to sickbay. Two security guards were standing there with phaser rifles drawn protecting sickbay. She nodded to them and they stood down. The doors opened, she walked in and saw the Doctor walking around the surgical bed with a PADD in his hand, and like her he had a phaser strapped to the side of his waist. She walked towards him and saw a member of her family lying on the bed. It reminded her of the time Paris passed the transwarp threshold and was beamed into sickbay, asleep. The Doctor turned around to meet the Captainís eyes.

"Ah, Captain Iím glad you are here."

"How is he, Doctor?" she asked. The Captain began to walk towards the bed with the Doctor following her.

"Fine, he will recover, but he has a few scars still from his injuries." He answered.

"Canít you use a dermal regenerator to get rid of them?" she questioned.

"Yes, but I have had to perform a lot of facial surgery on him over the last three hours. He would need at least a week before I can get rid of them with a dermal regenerator." He replied.

She looked down at the face of her friend. He had changed a lot, she thought. From being an ex-convict, from being her chief Conn officer, to being a husband to BíElanna, and being father to Miral.

"Can you wake him, Doctor?" She asked.

"Yes, of course." The Doctor picked up a hypospray and walked towards Paris and injected him with the medicine to wake him.

Parisí eyes opened and he blinked several times. He looked around and saw two faces he could not forget. Captain Janeway and the Doctor. He began to sit up on the bed.

"Take it easy, Tom." Said Janeway.

"I take it you beamed me off from my yacht?" he asked.

"Thatís right. Voyagerís sensor detected you departing the Kennedy on a heading for Starbase 471 at minimum thrusters, we dropped out of warp just on top of you and beamed you here." The Captain responded.

Paris looked at his hands, they were scared, and he touched his face he could feel the scars there too. He looked up at the Doctor.

"It will be some time before we can remove those. We have to let your face heal up on its own. You took quite a beating, I had to repair most of you facial muscles. Your hands were also burnt but I was able to reconstruct them. I had to replace most of the muscles in your ear with synthetic replacements, the ringing in your ears will subside." stated the Doctor.

"Thanks Doc," replied Paris, he turned and looked at Janeway, "How about the rest of my crew?" he asked.

"They are all fine. They were recovered in their pods by the Rhode Island."

"Isnít that Harryís ship?"

"Yes, apparently he got here to help out in destroying the last Breen ship."

"I didnít realise he was there, I thought we destroyed the last Breen ship, although the Kennedy was badly damagedÖ Howís the Kennedy?"

"The Kennedy is in tow between the Enterprise and the Galaxy. Sheís being repaired."

Paris smiled, he was glad he hadnít lost his ship.

"So when can I leave Doc?"

"You can leave now if you feel up to it. It would be good for you to do some mild exercise." The Doctor replied.

Paris slowly got off the bed and began to walk. Janeway looked at his uniform. It was in shreds.

"Letís get you a new uniform, Tom." Said Janeway. She took his arm to help support him. Both Captains walked slowly out of sickbay.

Captain Picard was sitting in his ready room when the door chimed.

"Come." He said.

The door opened and in came his first officer, Commander Will Riker. Riker had a PADD in his hand and he walked over to Captain Picard and handed the PADD over.

"Look at this." Riker told Picard.

Picard looked at the PADD pressed a few buttons. Sensor logs he thought to himself.

"These were sensor logs recovered from the Kennedy, along with sensor logs from Starbase 471 and the Rhode Island. It shows the Breen shipís bio-signatures."

"Iím sorry Will, but anatomy was never my strong subject at the academy."

"From what Data and Beverly have told me it shows that the Breen are infected by a genetic virus. Theyíre dying a long and painful death, Captain."

"So what you are telling me, Will, is that the Breen attack on us is not a vendetta against us after the Dominion War but a suicide mission because they are ill?" Said Picard.

"It looks that way, Captain."

"Iíll inform Starfleet. Good Work Will, and thank Data and Beverly too."

"Of course, Captain." And with that Riker walked out of the ready room.

The Bridge of the Kennedy was not how Paris had remembered it. Pieces hanging down, consoles destroyed, clutter everywhere. Next to him stood Kathryn Janeway.

"Iím sorry Tom." She said.

He looked at her.

"Donít worry, sheíll be her normal self in a week's time." He replied.

"Have you spoken to BíElanna?" she asked.

They began to walk around the bridge of the Kennedy.

"Yeah, I spoke to her an hour ago. She said she was fine and asked when I was coming home." He answered. They walked to over to the helm.

Captain Paris tapped a few commands into the helm. It was still under manual control he noticed. Captain Janeway looked around and saw something on the ground. It was the Kennedyís plaque. She bent down and picked it up. With the side of her hand, she scraped the dust from the plaque.

"All these yearsÖall these battles," she murmured. "This thingís never fallen down before."

Chakotay came to her side again, and they both thought of the man who had driven them apart and who had sacrificed himself so they might come together again.

"Letís put it back up where it belongs."

"Captain, Captain, you ok?" asked Paris, he was standing next to her looking at her.

She shook her head. She was remembering of what happened after her victory over Ransom and the crew of the Equinox. Her and Chakotay had found Voyagerís dedication plaque on the floor and together they put back in its rightful place.

"Iím fine Tom." She said. She looked at the Plaque. It read:

  
U.S.S. KENNEDY
NCCĖ77848

"The only way to discover the limits of the possible
is to go beyond them into the impossible."

UTOPIA PLANITIA SHIPYARDS
 

"What a great plaque Tom. Shall we put it back?" She asked.

Paris smiled and walked over to the bulkhead where the plaque had been hanging before. She followed him and together they put it back on the wall. As they turned around and began to walk back in front of them, a transporter beam dematerialised Captain Picard. Picard looked around.

"I asked to be beamed onto the bridge so I can talk to you both but I never realised the Enterpriseís targeting scanners were that accurate. Can we go somewhere to talk?" Picard asked.

"Yeah, sure this way we can use my ready room - whatís left of it." Replied Paris

Paris walked ahead followed by Picard and then Janeway.

The three Captains walked in to the ready room and the door closed behind them.

Paris and Janeway sat down on the turquoise sofa and Picard leaned against Captain Parisí desk.

"I have just been in contact with Starfleet over a few matters which I have been informed of. They include the Breen." Picard started.

"What are they, Jean-Luc?" asked Janeway.

"Commander Data and Doctor Crusher believe the Breen are infected with a genetic virus. Itís killing them off. We believe that is the reason why they attacked the Starbase. From what Doctor Crusher has told me the viruses attack only the genes that are unique to the Breen. Also from what we have learned, the Breen warships each carried a crew of five thousand."

"How thatís possible, those warships can only take up a maximum of three hundred." Said Paris.

"It seems the Breen are trying to kill themselves quicker as the viruses can make the death of a person very uncomfortable." Replied Picard. "Starfleet Command believe they know who is behind the creation of this genetic virus. The Dominion."

Both Paris and Janeway looked startled.

"The Dominion. Why?" asked Janeway

"It seems it was a measure put into place so the Breen would be forced to be loyal to the Dominion." Answered Picard. "The Federation Council has agreed to help the Breen. Starfleet intends on splitting the three of us up, once the Kennedy is repaired and ready to go. Iíll be leading a Federation task force into the Gamma Quadrant, we are hoping the Dominion will be co-operative in helping us out. Kathryn, you will be in command of a fleet of four starships to go and see if you can open a rapport with the Breen and prevent any more attacks on us. Tom your job is simple, warp to Earth and begin gathering a team of the best Federation Scientists and Doctors to see if they can come up with a cure, in case the Dominion will not help. Starfleet has already contacted other Federation Members and have asked for their assistance. So we need you to go to: Vulcan, Betazed, Andor, Tellar, Bajor, Trill, Bolarus and then Benzar. Bring them all back to Earth and take them to Starfleet Medical in San Francisco. While on your trip try and see if you can get a few more Starfleet ships to support us and order them to rendezvous with Voyager help out with reinforcements."

All three Captains nodded to each other and the adventure began.

Lieutenant Nog stood at the Engineering Console on the USS Defiant. Standing at the Tactical Station was Lieutenant Ezri Dax.

"It looks good, everything seems fine, you have done a great job, Nog." Said Dax.

It had been three days since the new upgrades for the Defiant had arrived. Nog had been waiting for these for four years after the Avatar incident. When Starfleet had sent him the requested upgrades, they had also sent him upgrades that had to be made on the Defiant which included the technology that Voyager had brought with them from the Delta Quadrant.

"Thanks Ezri, I could not have done it without your help." Nog replied.

The port door on the bridge opened and in walked Doctor Bashir. Both of them turned to look.

"Howís the new hologram going, Doctor?" asked Nog.

Along with the tactical and engineering upgrades the Defiant was given an AMH along with holo-emitters on every deck. Bashir had decided to see the new member of their crew.

"Heís fine, thanks Nog." Bashir replied. "I think I have found a new friend. Well, have you finished the final tweaks to the ship?"

"We have, the Defiant now has an Ablative Armour generator, along with the replacement of the cloak with a stealth device. I think the Romulans are going to be happy to see their cloak back." Said Ezri.

"Good, then we have a dinner arrangement with Kira and the rest of the senior officers." Said Bashir.

An alarm went off on the bridge of the Defiant. Ezri turned around and looked down at her console. Nog did the same and Bashir walked over to Ezri.

On her console, Ezri saw what she had not seen for four years, the Wormhole was opening and out of the wormhole was a fleet of Dominion ships heading for Deep Space Nine.

"My God," she said "I am detecting over fifty Dominion attack ships heading our way, with weapons charged and locked on."

"Hail the station Nog." Ordered Bashir. As the highest ranking officer on the bridge he naturally went in to command mode, both him and Ezri had decided to take the Starfleet Bridge exam at the intermediate level six months ago and both had passed. So if the command structure would fail on the Defiant either or both would be easily able to take command. He decided he would take command until Commander Vaughn could get there and take over. Nog began to tap in the sequence to hail Deep Space Nine but before he had time to finish, the bridge of the Defiant rocked harshly.

"Report." said Bashir as he turned to look at Ezriís console.

"Two attack ships just rammed into upper docking pylon two, its been destroyed." She reported.

"Doctor I canít contact the station." Shouted out Nog.

"Julian we are sitting ducks here. We need to depart from the station!" Screamed Ezri.

"Sir, I am detecting three ships heading straight for us." Yelled Nog.

Bashir walked over to the command chair and sat down in it. Alright, he thought. Then he began to give out orders.

"Ezri, take the helm and prepare to take us out. Nog, how many people are on board the Defiant?"

Ezri moved from her console and sat in the helm and began the pre-launch sequence.

"Sir we are the only three crewmembers on board." Replied Nog.

"Alright then, red alert. Nog take tactical and prepare to deploy the new armour once we are clear. Ezri take us out, full impulse." Commanded Bashir.

Nog ran over to tactical and sat down and began to punch in the commands he was ordered to do. The lights on the bridge got dark and the red alert lights began flashing and the siren began it normal battle-stations cry. The Defiant began to move away from Deep Space Nine.

"We have left the Docking ring, Julian." Reported Dax.

"Deploying armour," Nog announced, "Armour deployed, charging weapons."

Bashir smiled, thatís what he liked in Nog: always one step ahead from everyone else.

"Ezri, keep us at full impulse and begin attack pattern Sisko run." Bashir dictated.

Nog and Ezri smiled and were reminded of the famous manoeuvre created by their late captain in the Death Valley battle.

"Aye sir." Responded Ezri.

The Defiant turned around, went straight to the attackers and began her attempt to save Deep Space Nine.

 

Chapter 3

"Whatís going on?" yelled Kira. It was her way in a crisis to say Ďreportí, but at the moment she could not be bothered to be polite.

Commander Vaughn was sitting next to her at the operations table and replied: "The Defiant has been launched and is beginning an attack run on the Dominion ships. We, on the other hand, have lost upper pylon two and have taken damage to the communications array, the habitat ring and the secondary fusion reactors. We do have weapons, Colonel."

"What about the Destiny and the Agincourt?" asked Kira.

"They are under attack by four attack ships. Colonel, we need to return fire." Said Vaughn.

"Ok, unleash hell." Ordered Kira.

With that Vaughn, programmed into the computer to fire on the Dominion ships.

Deep Space Nine was firing everything it had. Barrages of quantum torpedoes were being fired and streaks of phaser fire were being leashed against the hulls of numerous Dominion ships. The Dominion ships were losing ships by the numbers. The Excelsior class starship USS Agincourt along with the Nebula-class starship USS Destiny were freed from their attackers and began to assist the USS Defiant in their battle. The three starships moved together into a triangle formation with the Defiant at the front opening fire on any Dominion ship which was in their way. They had made a gap between them and the Dominion lead ship. All three ships started their dash against the large battlecruiser.

The Defiant was the first to fire everything she had against the mighty ship by attacking their port nacelle. The Destiny fired a burst of phaser energy against the nacelle, followed with a strafe of quantum torpedoes and then moved away to follow the Defiant for their next attack. The Agincourt fired a full spread of quantum torpedoes at the nacelle. The first six torpedo destroyed the shielding around the nacelle and the seventh and eighth cracked the nacelle wide open. The Agincourt hurried after the Defiant and the Destiny. The three ships began their final hunt against the battlecruiser that was ignoring them and focusing its attack against Deep Space Nine. All three ships fired a full spread of torpedoes against the mighty ship and the first torpedoes hits ripped the hull, followed by the last bombardment which brought an end to the mighty ship. The battlecruiser tore itself open and exploded. The smaller Dominion ships began to escape towards the wormhole, but it was only a few that could escape Deep Space Nineís defence systems. It was over. The Defiant, Agincourt and Destiny returned to the station like infant wolves returning to their injured mother.

In the wardroom sat the senior crew of Deep Space Nine. Kira stood one end of the table with Commander Vaughn sitting to her right and Doctor Bashir on her left. Next to Bashir sat Dax and next to her Ro. Sitting next to Vaughn was Nog, beside him sat Shar. The newly promoted lieutenant sat uneasy as next to him sat Taraníatar.

"I have just recently spoken to Admiral Ross at Starbase 375, it seems we wonít get any reinforcement for at least a day and that will be only one ship; the USS Griffin, one of the new Nova-X class starships." Started Kira.

"Thatís it? Thatís all we are getting?" questioned Nog.

"I know it seems a little, but in eight days time a large Federation fleet will arrive comprising of eighty-three ships, lead by the USS Enterprise. It seems we are not the first Starbase to be attacked this week. Starbase 471 was attacked by the Breen. The Starbase took heavy damage along with the surrounding defence fleet." Finished Kira.

"Great, this is all we need - two wars." Said Dax.

"In fact the Federation is not going to war with the Breen. Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise have found out that the Breen are dying from a genetic virus. From what Admiral Ross has been told by Starfleet Intelligence, the virus is claiming lives in the millions. It seems that the Dominion is behind the virus. It may be a link between them attacking us and this virus. Anyway we canít be distracted by something which is not affecting us yet, we need worry about the station, Nog how long until we get a new docking pylon?" Kira asked.

Nog looked a little nervous and stood up from his chair and walked over to the display console on the wall.

"Itís going to take time Colonel." informed Nog, he tapped a few buttons on the display at up came schematics of the Station with the missing pylon. One showing a dorsal view of the station and the other an elevation view. "I have to take out every damage component out and replace with all new ones. I then have to either construct or request a new pylon. One which is compatible with the station."

"Can you not take one off from Empok Nor? Itís still in the Bajoran system." Asked Commander Vaughn.

"At first I thought about it, but the technology on Empok Nor is way behind from what Deep Space Nine technological level is at. The best way is to ask for one from the Cardassians. At least, that way if the Pylon would need certain upgrades it wonít be hard doing them and it wonít waste time." replied Nog.

"Alright Nog, Iíll talk to the Cardassians for you. Next piece of business, station defence." Began Kira "If we are attacked again either by the Dominion or Breen we need to be ready. Suggestions, people."

"I suggest we outfit the new armour technology to all of our runabouts and use them as small attack fighters." Started Commander Vaughn "If they have the armour generators, at least they would be able to defend themselves with ease, they should be also each giving weapon pods to be put on them."

"Thatís not a bad idea, Commander Vaughn I want you to assign the designated crew to the Runabouts. Nog, how soon can you get those runabouts ready?" inquired the Colonel.

"Well, letís see if I use all available engineering crew members, it could be between four to five hours, Colonel. The runabout Rio Grande would be ready and after that the Euphrates, Thames, Genesee and the Sabine who all already have the weapons pod installed should be ready thirty minutes after the Rio Grande. At least it would keep me busy until we get the new pylon." Replied Nog.

"One last piece, I would like to congratulate Julian, Ezri and Nog for doing a great job on the Defiant, Iíve put in all in for commendations."

Dax, Bashir and Nog all smiled smugly.

"Alright, letís get down to business people." Said Kira. The senior crew all nodded to each other and began to prepare for the worse.

Admiral Ross was sitting quietly in his office on Starbase 375. The lights were dim and the Admiral was reading the latest reports from DS9. He was holding a mug of tea and he could still fill the warmth of it after asking for it from the replicator a few minutes ago. He sipped some of the drink. He could feel the warmth of the drink heating him up. The door to his officer chimed and the Admiral responded with:

"Enter."

In came Captain Jean-Luc Picard. The captain turned to face the Admiral and nodded to him.

"Please, Captain, sit down." Said Ross, who was pointing towards the seat opposite to the Admiralís desk. "Earl Grey?" he asked.

"No Thank you, Admiral I just had one on the Enterprise with Captain Dawson." He returned.

"Have you assembled the fleet yet?" inquired Ross.

"Nearly, the USS Venture will arrive with the rest of the remaining ships in a dayís time." Responded the captain.

"Do you want to take the Cerberus?" asked The Admiral. The USS Cerberus was the Admiralís personal flagship and was a Prometheus-Class starship, the second of that class.

"No, I think the Cerberus should stay here incase this Starbase is attacked."

"So, what is your game plan when you reach DS9?"

"Well, first we need to establish a defense for the Station if we are to enter the Gamma Quadrant." Replied the Captain. "Since the attack on Deep Space Nine for all we know the Dominion could be waiting for us on the other side of the wormhole with over a thousand ships."

"Good point, I suggest that you discuss this with Colonel Kira when you arrive. Well I wish you luck, Captain."

Both the Admiral and the Captain stood up and shook each otherís hand and Picard left the room.

"Captainís Log, stardate 59763.2. The Kennedy, for the last week, has been touring the Federation to see if we could get any Federation doctors or scientists to help out with finding a cure for the Breen virus, so far no one is willing to assist in helping the Breen. Commander Johnson believes that there is still much hatred for the Breen since the Dominion War. I also agree, as Starfleet Command can not order them to help, my fears grow every time we get a no that the Breen will launch another offensive against the Federation again. Our trip so far has not been that bad. I was able to get the USS Ranger, an Akira-class starship, and the USS Faithful, a Saber-class, to join us to rendezvous with Captain Janeway at Starbase 471. We are now heading to Bajor to see

if we can rally support there for the Breen crisis. Also Captain Reynolds of the USS Centaur is assembling a few more Federation starships inside Federation protectorate space and is meeting us just outside Bajoran space."

Captain Paris was strolling around the bridge of the Kennedy, looking over the shoulders of his crew at their workstations. The Kennedyís crew was one of the youngest in the fleet. Most of them were straight out of the academy and inexperienced of starship operations. Starfleet was unsure of Paris having such a young crew on one of their best ships, but with a lot of persuasion and Ďarm bendingí Starfleet agreed. So far the crew was at their best. After recovering from a huge battle, Paris was proud that the battle had been won and the crew was even closer then ever. It reminded him of when he was on Voyager. The first battle against the Kazon had brought the Maquis and Starfleet crew closer together and after that every battle for survival that they won the crew was getting closer and closer. Victories against the Hirogen, Species 8472, Malon and of especially against the Borg. But thatís not what else brought the Voyager crew closer, things like surviving on a volcanic earth-like planet after being stranded by the Kazon, finding a new home for an electromagnetic life form and returning home to their loved ones. Tom was walking behind Lieutenant Carson at his tactical station when an alarm on his station began going off.

"What is it?" asked Paris.

"Long range sensors are detecting a massive subspace shock wave heading in our direction." Reported Carson. The ship began to shake. The bridge crew began to hold onto to what they could. Paris walked over to the helm, where Fiona Darwin sat.

"Can we stay at warp, Fiona?" he asked.

"No, sir the warp field is beginning to destabilising." She replied.

"Take us at of warp, Fiona. Michael, tell the Ranger and Faithful to do the same thing."

Paris walked over to his command chair and sat down. He could see different members of the bridge crew rushing around preparing for what ever is heading for them.

"Red alert." Ordered Paris, this bridge went dark and the red alert lights and siren started going off. "Alex can the shields take the impact of the shock wave?" asked Paris.

"No, sir. Itís a level twelve shockwave." He responded.

"Bridge to Engineering, deploy armour."

The mighty Kennedy along with the Faithful and Ranger all simultaneously dropped out of warp and the three ships were covered by their silver layer of skin. The massive shockwave was moving faster and faster until it hit the powerful ships. The Faithful was hit first and the small Saber class starship rocked hard, next was the Kennedy who was knocked off from her steady stand still and finally the Ranger who was pushed off her balance and made to spin around. Each ship fired a green and blue beam at each other. With the tractor beams of each ship they were hoping to anchor each other from the shockwave. It passed and it was over. On the bridge of the Kennedy the entire crew was in a state of panic. Paris was rushing to different stations collecting status reports, Heather was helping with the injured and Michael was helping repair the Kennedyís bridge.

After a while the panic began to calm down and Paris got back into his command chair.

"Where did that shock wave come from?" the captain began, hoping anyone could answer him.

"Sir the shockwave came from inside Breen space." Returned Fiona who was at the helm. "It looks like it came from the Combari system."

"What do we know about the Combari system?" asked Paris.

Fiona tapped on her console to bring up the required data.

"From what we know the Combari system is right in the middle of Breen space, it has binary pulsars in the system. The Breen have a large shipyard there, quite an important one at that."

"I donít think that shipyard is there any more lieutenant." Paris said calmly. He turned to Commander Johnson who had just sat back down in his chair. "What about that shockwave, Michael?"

Johnson looked down at his console and read the sensor output. "The shockwave will dissipate in two hours time. Sir, I have just received word from the Ranger, they have sent a priority one transmission to all nearby Federation shipping, space stations and colonies in the area about the shockwave."

"Send our thanks to the Captain of the Ranger and ask them along with the Faithful if they need any type of assistants. We need to carry on for Bajor, but have the Astrometrics lab keep a constant eye on the Breen, I want to know exactly when another shock wave maybe heading our way."

The Kennedy and its companions all stretched out and were all gone with a bright white light.

The lights on the bridge of Voyager were all dark, Captain Janeway was lying in her command chair reading a book, the book was called ĎOf Mice and Mení. She had just turned the page and took a sip from her steaming cup of coffee. There was no one else on the bridge except her, it was the nightshift and she relieved everyone off the bridge so they could get some rest. It hadnít been an eventful day, there had been no word from the Breen or Starfleet. She had spoken to Tom early on and she was sad that his mission was not going as well as it could have. She had also got word from Jean-Luc and that he was waiting for the rest of his fleet to arrive at Starbase 375. Three Captains without an adventure, how boring, she thought.

She was lying across her chair and Chakotayís chair when a warning siren on her personal console began to flash. She tapped a few buttons to stop the siren and placed her book down in the small curve near her console along with her cup of coffee. She got up and walked over to the helm and sat in the pilotís seat. She read off from the console that the long range sensors detected a massive shockwave just passing Starbase 471 by a few parsecs. She did a new scan of Voyagerís surroundings, the Starbase did not take damage and neither did the rest of the defending fleet, the two nearest ships to Voyager, the USS Challenger and USS Nevada had also scan the Starbase and the fleet. She sighed and was glad nobody was hurt. Ever since Picard and Paris had left, Janeway was hoping not to be in another battle, Voyager was not a warship, she was a ship of science and exploration. But then who was she kidding, Voyager had fought for survival for seven years and returned home fighting. All she wanted to do was to explore, how she missed exploring. She touched her combadge and ordered her crew to their posts, it wouldnít be long before the bridge crew had arrived, so she quickly ran over to her chair and drunk her coffee until it was all gone, she placed her bookmark at her page and closed the book. She then waited.

Both Doctor Bashir and Lieutenant Dax were sitting at one of the tables in the replimat, eating their lunch. They had both decided to take lunch together. Bashir had finished his morning duties and Dax was relived at her post on the Defiant and transported over to the station. Bashir was reading a report he had written, he was making sure it sounded ok, Dax on the other hand was looking deeply into her steamy cup of tea waiting for it to cool down. She looked up at the young Doctor and spoke:

"So howís your morning been?"

"Oh, yeah, really busy, yours?" he returned.

"Not bad, mainly filling in ship status reports and checking up on the crew like a first officer should."

"Oh, good." He responded, Doctor Bashir was still going over his report while speaking to Dax.

"I must thank you for what you did yesterday on the Defiant, taking command did make me feel better, I knew I just couldnít handle it."

"Thatís ok Ezri." he looked up to her and put his report on the table. "I know that you have had a lot on your plate lately, you have been giving a lot of responsibilities recently since your transfer to the command division. Anyway, it was good for me to stretch out my command legs. We both agreed that we were going to take the command program together."

"Well Iím glad you enjoyed it." She replied.

"Actually Iím thinking about asking Nerys if I could take command of a few more missions. Since the mission into the Badlands four years ago and taking command of the Defiant yesterday was enjoyable. I think I can now see why you decided to get a transfer to the command division. Being a Doctor is ok, but I have been a Doctor here at Deep Space Nine for over ten years now and I think that a few command missions would be great to do."

Ezri looked surprised, she knew that Julian had decided to take the command program with her so that way she was not on her own, but she never realised he would want to take a more active role in command.

"Well good for you Julian, maybe some of my influence has rubbed of on you." She replied.

They both laughed and returned to eating their lunch.

"Captain, there is a priority one transmission incoming for you from Starbase 375." Reported Carson. On the Bridge of the Kennedy Paris looked round to his security chief and told him to redirect it to his ready room. Paris got out of his chair walked to his ready room. The doors opened and Paris walked over to his desk which held his command console. He tapped a button on the console and relayed his authorisation code to the console.

"Authorisation Paris five eight alpha tango."

The console blipped and the black screen turned to Admiral Rossí face.

"Captain, it is good to see you. We donít have time for chit-chat so Iíll get straight to it. Starfleet is reassigning you. We need you to take temporary command of our forces in the Bajor system until the Enterprise arrives with the rest of the task force. Get to Deep Space Nine as soon as possible. Ross out."

The screen turned black with the Federation Insignia replacing the Admiralís face.

"And hello to you to." Said Paris. He tapped his combadge and told Commander Johnson to increase speed to Deep Space Nine and to inform the Ranger and Faithful of the new plans and to tell the USS Centaur to return back to Federation Protectorate space.

 

Chapter 4

Picard was sitting in his chair in his ready room. In front of him was his command console, on the command console was Captain Janeway. They were talking about the current situation happening in Breen space and at Deep Space Nine. Picard had informed Janeway about the Kennedyís new orders and told her he would try and get a few starships to her as soon as possible. The shockwave inside Breen space had prompted Janeway to take Voyager into Breen space along with the USS Challenger, the USS Nevada and the USS Sheffield to investigate. She told Picard it would be at least an hour before they would arrive at the nearest Breen system to Starbase 471. Picard had informed her he was waiting for the rest of the task force. The USS Venture had taken damage to their warp drive and was being towed to Starbase 375 it was doubling his time in leaving the space station. That was what had prompted the reassignment of the Kennedy along with a number of other ships to Deep Space Nine.

"Well it seems we both are in for another long day, Jean-Luc." Captain Janeway began.

"Indeed, I am hoping that the Dominion arenít thinking about attacking DS9 before we arrive." He responded.

The two Captains continued talking about the current report from the USS Ronald, a Galaxy-class starship that had detected an unknown starship between the Bajoran Badlands and Europa Nova. The Ronald was ordered to return to Starbase 375 to be assigned to the task force, but Picard was worried about this unknown ship it could interfere with the fleet before they headed towards Deep Space Nine, but Starfleet had informed them that they should not worry about it. Janeway said she had to go and make sure Voyager was ready before it arrived in Breen Space. Picard acknowledged and said he would speak to her tomorrow.

Kira was sitting at her desk staring at her console, looking at a face she had not seen for four years, Odo.

"Nerys, if you receive this message, then it means your relay station is still operating fine. The JemíHadar who attacked you were not given orders from the Dominion to sanction the attack. They responded with an attack against the station because five weeks ago a JemíHadar attack ship was destroyed by an act of terrorism, it seems the bomb consisted of technology from the Federation and the Klingon Empire. You may think it strange why would they attack DS9 if only an attack ship was destroyed. The attack ship had a Founder on board along with many Vorta diplomats who were returning from a peace conference with a world which the Dominion conquered eighteen years ago. The diplomats were acting under my command, they were giving the world needed supplies and negotiating a peace treaty. The rogue JemíHadar decided to go against my orders and wanted to attack Deep Space Nine in retaliation for the destruction of the attack ship. I have already begun a search to end these rogue JemíHadar, so I suggest the Federation do not enter the Gamma Quadrant until further notice. I do hope that this was not planned by the Federation or any of its allies, which I know it was not, but I suggest you begin to find a way to protect the station if I canít end this rogue faction. I hope that the distress they brought you has not brought damage to the peace treaty. Hope to hear from you soon. Goodbye Nerys."

The recording ended and a blank screen covered it. It had only been half an hour since the Defiant and the Agincourt had returned from the Gamma Quadrant to retrieve the relay station. Nog had found the message within the relay coded for the Colonel. She was glad Vaughn had left it for her to see it alone. She thought to herself she would have to show it to the rest of the crew and even Starfleet Command. But decided she was going to wait to see what Elias was going to say about showing it to Starfleet.

The Kennedy was arriving in twenty minutes with a few other ships. Captain Tom Paris was ordered to take temporary command of the Starfleet ships posted at Deep Space Nine until Captain Picard arrived with the rest of the task force. Kira was not worried about that, she had another problem. Bajor had received a distress call from Europa Nova requesting medical supplies and assistance. But as usually there was always an obstacle. The Bajoran Militia had already spared a number of ships but they did not have enough ships in helping taking the supplies to Europa Nova. Most of the Militiaís fleet was protecting Bajor. The Militia had asked for her help, she said she would deal with it. The Defiant could take it, she thought. There were a lot of medical supplies to get to Europa Nova and there was no way a Runabout could take them all. She had already spoken to Elias, he said he was to busy preparing the station for the large task force arriving and he would not have enough time to take command of the Defiant and get back in time for the task force. So she was left with giving temporary command of the Defiant to Doctor Bashir. He deserved it after taking command of the Defiant yesterday and winning the battle against the JemíHadar. It seemed he had what it took to be a good captain and also he knew Europa Novaís chief surgeon.

She had called him up to her office, before seeing the message from Odo. By the time she had finished watching the message the young Doctor was waiting for her outside her office. She told him to enter and gestured towards him to take a seat in front of her desk.

"You said you needed to talk to me?" he started.

"Thatís right, Julian. Bajor received a distress call from Europa Nova one hour ago. Apparently the main medical facilities in the central city have been destroyed by seismic shockwaves that are devastating the planet. They have requested medical supplies from Bajor. The Bajoran Government has agreed to send assistance but all of the ships they can spare are already packed out. They are already on their way to Europa Nova but there is one more delivery needed to take place. The Militia has asked me to get the medical supplies to the settlement by using one of our ships. The Defiant is ready to leave but neither Commander Vaughn or myself can command the Defiant. We are needed to stay here on the station to prepare for the Federation task force. I want you to command the Defiant and get the medical supplies to Europa Nova."

"Me, you want me to command the Defiant?" he said shocked.

"Thatís right. Dax will act as your first officer and pilot, Shar will also come along as science officer, Nog will be chief engineer and Bowers will come and act as security and tactical officer. I also want you to take Taraníatar as a personal request. He can use the time to study humanitarian aid. Also, be aware Julian the USS Ronald detected an unknown ship in the area between Europa Nova and the Badlands. Starfleet believe they may be pirates as a few civilian ships have gone missing in that region. Be careful."

"Wait a minute. I thought the Defiant was being used as defence for the station?" asked Bashir.

"Julian, in less then twenty minutes a Sovereign class starship will drop out of warp with two starships accompany it. We will be fine if the Dominion attack. You leave as soon as your crew is assembled. Also, you are no longer in the science division. Before you leave, change into the command diversion uniform. Make sure those supplies get to Europa Nova and then return back to the station." She ordered.

Bashir sat back in his chair and smiled. He was finally getting a command of his own, he thought.

"Alright, orders understood." He finished. He got up and went to the door.

"Good Luck, Julian, do us proud." Kira said.

Bashir stood facing the mirror in his and Daxís quarters. He was not too sure if he liked the red shirt. He had got so used to the turquoise shirt he had worn in ages, he had forgotten about change.

Dax walked over to him and put her hand on his shoulder. She looked into the mirror and spoke.

"Look at us two, both into science one minute and the next thing weíre commanders."

He smiled, "I think I am going to have to get used to this." He tugged on his shirt.

Dax chuckled. "What?" he asked.

"You just looked like Picard tugging on your shirt like that."

"Wel,l I think I know why so many Captains do tug on it." He replied

"Come on, we are going to be late for the Defiant." She said. She took his hand and they both headed for the door out of their quarters and headed off to the Defiant.

"Captain on the bridge!" Shouted Shar. Everyone on the bridge stood to attention.

Bashir thought to himself he could get used to hearing that. Ezri walked from his side and sat down at the helm.

"As you were." Said Bashir. He walked over to where Nog was sitting at the engineering station.

"Report, Lieutenant." Bashir requested.

"All systems report ready, the medical supplies are inside the cargo bay and secured with a transporter inhibitor network to prevent anyone from stealing them. Lieutenant Bowers has placed security guards in and around the bay." Reported the young Ferengi.

"Good." Bashir spoke, he walked over to where Bowers was sitting and asked for a report from security and tactical.

"Quantum torpedoes are fully armed, phasers are charged to maximum and both the armour generator and stealth device are ready to be brought online. All crewmembers have given side arms just in case we are boarded and I have full security teams on every deck and every section." The lieutenant summarised.

Ezri began to giggle and covered her mouth with her hand. Bashir walked over to her at the helm.

"Something wrong, Lieutenant?" he whispered in her ear.

She looked at him and quietly said. "You just sounded like Benjamin when you asked for those reports."

Captain Sisko before the last battle in the Dominion War had gone around and asked every member of his crew how they were handling and asked for reports.

"Well I learnt from the best." Bashir returned. He walked over to the command chair and sat down. It felt comfortable he thought.

"Well it seems we better be going. Shar do we have clearance to leave?"

"Yes, we do sir." Responded the young Andorian.

"Very well. Dax, take us out. Mr Bowers, deploy armour and after that activate the stealth device."

"Aye sir." Confirmed Bowers from the tactical station.

The Defiant moved away from the station and was covered by its silver coat. The lights on the bridge faded and the Defiant disappeared. All that was left of it was the bright white light it created by jumping in to warp.

"Approaching Deep Space Nine, sir." Reported Lieutenant Darwin from the helm.

"Drop us at of warp, go to one eighth impulse power and put us into station orbit." Ordered Paris.

The Kennedy along with her companion ships all dropped out of warp and headed for the distinguished station.

"Si,r we are being hailed by Colonel Kira. She says she is ready to meet with you in person." Johnson reported.

"Very well." Spoke Paris. The Captain stood up and tucked on his shirt and headed for the turbo lift. When he got in he turned around and looked at Johnson.

"Michael, the Bridge is yours."

The transporter beam fuzzed away and Paris found himself in Deep Space Nineís Operations centre. In front of him stood Colonel Kira and an older man he thought he recognised.

"Welcome to DS9." Cheerfully Kira said, "Captain Paris, let me introduce you to my first officer, Commander Elias Vaughn." Stated the Colonel.

So Paris did recognise him. "Yes I think I remember reading many of your reports when I attended at the Starfleet tactical college on Earth."

"Iím please my reputation has not deceased yet." Joked the Commander. He extended his arm to Paris and they both shook each others hand.

"Well, it seems we need to get up to date on our current situation. If you follow us, Captain, we can speak in private in my office." Interrupted Kira.

"Of course." Replied Paris.

The three of them all walked in to the Colonelís office and spoke about the current situation. Kira showed Paris the message from Odo. Paris informed both Kira and Vaughn about the Breen attack on Starbase 471 and the shockwave they had detected from Breen space. Kira and Vaughn had both notified Paris about the Defiant on another mission and would return soon. The three all spent some time in the office talking about plans and strategies for the Station and other preparations needed before Picard and the task force would arrive. It would have been some time since DS9 would have had so many ships docked or defending the station since the Dominion war. Picard was leading a fleet of eighty-three ships and with Paris bringing the Kennedy, Faithful and Ranger along as well, this would become very interesting to see how DS9 would cope. Paris thought to himself how proud he was that he ordered the USS Centaur and its small fleet back into Federation Protectorate space.

"Captainís log, stardate 59769.1. Voyager has begun searching Breen Space since the subspace shockwaves has ended. We are looking for any survivors or a clue to what or who has done this. We are now approaching an M-class planet which was not affected by the shockwave. From what Starfleet Intelligence has told me this is planet has only recently been colonised. Also there should be barely any Breen ships in the area as it is to believe most of them were located in the most populated systems, I am still not taking any chances and Voyager has its armour generator online ready if there is to be any fighting."

Captain Janeway walked out on to her bridge from her ready room. She saw Commander Chakotay sitting in his chair. He looked up to her and acknowledged her. She sat down in her chair and looked at him.

"We are approaching the colony, Captain. So far no answer from our hail." He reported.

Janeway nodded and looked over to the helm. Sitting at the helm was Ensign Brent. He was a young human male fresh out of the academy, a worthy successor for Tom, the captain thought.

"Mr Brent, standard orbit." Ordered Janeway.

"Captain youíre not going believe this but sensors have just detected a Federation signal coming from this planetís first moon. It seems we arenít the first ones here." Chakotay notified her.

"On screen. Maximum magnification" Janeway commanded

The view screen changed to see the dark grey moon and a small vessel which was towing another smaller vessel.

"Is that a Miranda class starship?" Janeway asked.

"No, itís Soyuz class, Captain." Responded Chakotay.

Janeway turned to and look at Chakotay and then at her personal console. She looked over to the Engineering station where Lieutenant Commander Barclay was sitting, staring at the viewscreen.

"Chakotay try and see if you can hail them. Reg can you identify that ship that they are towing?"

He snapped back and looked down at his console and began pushing in a few buttons.

"It will take a few minutes for the computer to identify the ship." Replied Barclay.

"Captain the Soyuz class ship is not responding to hail. And from what their ID transponder is telling us it is the USS Herringbone. From our records the Herringbone was presumed lost after a huge battle. Captain Sulu of the USS Excelsior, reported that the Herringbone along with all hands was presumed destroyed by a Romulan battle cruiser."

"The Herringbone was part of Suluís small fleet to find a Romulan Bird of Prey which entered Federation Space with out permission. Thereís more the USS Enterprise-B along with the USS Excelsior were lately put back on a search mission for the Herringbone, Starfleet thought that she was not destroyed but captured by the Romulans. " Chakotay reported.

"Did they ever find her?" asked Janeway who standing up and was behind Ensign Brent looking out at the viewscreen.

"No, Starfleet recovered an escape pod with a single crew member on it. He told them that the Romulans were using the ship to transport ore deposits from a planet in the Neutral Zone to Romulus. Both the Enterprise and Excelsior entered the Neutral Zone and recovered the entire Herringbone crew and destroyed the complex. They never found the Herringbone after that. The Romulan government denied everything right from the beginning." Replied Chakotay.

"So what the hell is a ghost ship doing here?" asked Janeway.

"Captain, sensors have found out what the Herringbone is towing." announced Barclay.

"Well Mr Barclay what is it?" Janeway inquired.

"Itís a Cardassian Dreadnought." Returned Barclay.

The entire bridge went silent. Everyone knew about the incident with another Cardassian Dreadnought, that Voyager had destroyed in the Delta Quadrant. Janeway walked over and sat in her chair.

"Battle-stations." Janeway ordered. At that moment the bridge was turned from its bright lights to its dull lights. The red lights began to blink on and off and the siren for battle stations was set off at the same time. Crews began to rush around the bridge reporting for their postings. Commander Barclay walked from his station and went in to the turbolift and headed for main engineering. Chakotay told Janeway that all weapons were brought online and the USS Sheffield, an Ambassador-class starship, would be with them in fifteen minutes. Janeway began to recall what had happened, the only way they could destroy the Dreadnought was with a large antimatter discharge in front of the nose of the ship. She looked at the sensor readouts, this Dreadnought had no engines at all, but was replaced with more weapons. She started to plan out her attack in her mind, the Soyuz class ship holding it in would be an easy target to pick off. Five quantum torpedoes should destroy the tractor beam. Thatís how they might move it, she thought, with the tractor beam. Without that it might not be able to move. She ordered Ensign Brent to begin an attack run on the Herringbone and ordered a lock on the tractor beam of the Herringbone. This fight she was going to win.

"Acting Captainís log, stardate 59770.7. Lieutenant Commander Bashir reporting. We are now approaching the Europa Nova Colony. It has been just under four years since the Defiant and many other Federation and Bajoran starships helped with the moving of the colonyís population from risks of high levels of theta radiation. We have been ordered to deliver medical supplies to the capital city of Europa Nova where help is required the most. After delivery we are ordered to return back to DS9. I am hoping this will be uneventful mission. There is still no sign of the unknown vessels that the USS Ronald detected but I have had Lieutenant Bowers keeping an eye on the sensors."

Bashir sat in the command chair of the Defiant reading the recent status report he had asked from Nog. Nog was having problems with the new stealth device and was hoping to repair it before they got back to Deep Space Nine.

"Entering the Europa Nova system now, Captain." Dax reported from the helm.

"Drop us out of warp and disengage the stealth device. Ezri plot a course for the colony full impulse." Bashir ordered. Bashir tapped the console to his right which opened a com link between the bridge to main engineering.

"Bashir to Engineering. Nog I have ordered the Stealth device to be brought offline, will that help you find the problem a bit quicker?" Bashir inquired.

"I think so, hopefully I should have it back up and running again before we leave the system." Nog stated.

"Good, keep up the good work. Bashir out." Bashir sighed and fell back into the command chair. Why did he fell as if this mission was going to be long he thought. Perhaps when we get into orbit I let Ezri take command and before we leave Iíll take back command he thought. Then it happened, the one noise he did not want to hear. The proximity signal started to bleep at Lieutenant Bowersí console. Bashir sat himself up and spoke.

"Report, Lieutenant Bowers."

"Sir, sensors have detected an unknown vessel on an intercept course for us and if this is right their weapons are fully charged." Announced Bowers.

Bashir got out of his chair and walked over to the aft console where Taraníatar stood, monitoring the current situation.

"Taraníatar do you recognise this ship?" Bashir questioned.

"I do believe I can identify a number of the shipís systems." Taraníatar responded.

Bashir walked over to his side and looked down at the readouts Taraníatar was looking at. Taraníatar touched a few buttons and the readouts changed to show the entire ship.

"The spaceframe is a of Cardassian design. But the hull is made of viterium which is strange as viterium is a Dominion metal alloy. Even stranger is that most of the shipís defensive systems is made of Breen technology. Including a cloaking device and type four disrupters. Wait, there is more I am detecting more modifications to the ship, including Federation torpedo launchers, Klingon photon torpedoes and a Ferengi warp drive." Taraníatar was as Bashir thought looked surprised. By now most of the crew was listening into Taraníatar listing the shipís systems.

"An ultimate ship." Bashir said, "Different key systems all brought together to make one ship. But how? And I thought we had difficulties bringing Cardassian, Federation and Bajoran technology together to work on DS9."

Ezri turned around to look at Bashir who walking away from Taraníatar. "Miles would have loved to get his hand on a ship like that." She turned back round to look at the approaching ship on the main viewer.

"Indeed." Bashir replied. He looked back at Taraníatar. "Taraníatar, can you modify our sensors so we can get a better look at that ship."

"I believe so." Taraníatar answered.

Bashir nodded to him do as he was told. Taraníatar began the modifications. Bashir sat back down in the command chair. He began to give out his orders,

"Mr Bowers, stand by all weapons. Ezri if they begin to open fire on us take erratic evasive manoeuvres." Bashir tapped on his combadge, "Bashir to Nog. Get up here right away and bring Shar with you."

"Aye sir." Returned Nog.

"Red alert." Bashir commanded. With the order the inside of the Defiant was turned dark and the red lights began to flash.

"Commander Bashir, I have finished the modifications and scanned the enemy ship." Taraníatar stated.

Bashir got up and walked back over to the JemíHadar. "Good work Taraníatar. Report then."

"Sensors indicate that there is twenty-one people on board. Their life signatures detect that most of them are human, and the rest either species native to the Federation. I believe from these sensor readouts I can determine a strategy point where we can be given the upper hand."

"You mean a weak spot." Bashir corrected.

"Yes, a weak spot, but it will take time for me to find it."

"Do it, Taraníatar. We are going need all the help we can take." Bashir said.

Then Lieutenants Nog and Shar walked on to the Bridge and took their seats at their stations. Bashir walked over to where Nog was sitting.

"Report on that stealth device Nog?" inquired Bashir.

"My teams are clearing all of the sand dust away from it. Now it should be ready in fifteen minutes." Nog returned.

"Well done Lieutenant, Chief OíBrien would be pleased with you."

The young Ferengi smiled gladly at the comment Bashir had brought out with. Bashir walked over by where Ezri was sitting, watching over her every move.

"I think it is time we hailed our friends, agreed?" Bashir said. Ezri nodded and hailed the ship.

"Nothing. They are not responding." Ezri reported.

"Open a channel, all frequencies. This is Lieutenant Commander Bashir in command of the Federation Starship USS Defiant to the unknown ship heading in our direction. We do not know who you are but I do not like the idea of you targeting my ship with your weapons, stand down and we can talk. I promise you I will take my finger off my trigger if you do the same. End transmission."

"They are still ignoring us." Dax said.

"Sir, they are on an attack run for us." Shouted Lieutenant Bowers.

"Nog, is the armour generator still online?"

"Yes, Commander." Replied Nog.

"Alright, letís scare them. Lieutenant Bowers, target their weapons array but donít open fire. Dax, engage attack pattern Gamma four nine." Ordered Bashir.

The Defiant changed its course on its heading for the unknown ship. The plan was simple, thatís why Bashir chose it. The enemy would think the Defiant was going to collide with them. When the Defiant was within fifty kilometres it would spin through a one-hundred-eighty degrees turn to starboard and should open fire, but Bashir ordered not for the Defiant to open fire. The Defiant proceeded with its plan of action. And then all they could do was to wait to see if the plan would work.

 

Chapter 5

They came within sixty kilometres and Dax was just about to spin the Defiant into its turn but the enemy ship opened fire with everything they had. The Defiant executed its turn but the enemy ship opened fired against the Defiantís lower hull and spat everything out against the Federation warship. The bridge on the Defiant rocked and Bashir held tight on to the command chairís arms.

"Report." He inquired.

"Armour down to ninety-eight percent integrity, deflector effectiveness down to seventy-three percent." Nog said, looking down at the ship status report on his console.

"Julian if the shields go down, they could try and board us." Shouted Dax.

"Sir, it looks like they are targeting the cargo bay." Yelled Bowers.

"They are trying to get their hands on the medical supplies. Mr Bowers, assign additional security teams inside and outside the cargo bay. Tell your people that they canít allow anyone to get their hands on our cargo." Bashir tapped his combadge, "Bashir to all hands, we might be boarded. Implement defensive procedure Alpha."

All of the crew on the bridge took out handheld phasers and placed them in one of their hands while using their other hand to control their console. Taraníatar took out two phaser rifles from the weapons locker along with handheld ones. He walked over to Bashir and gave him one of the handheld phasers and a rifle. Bashir nodded in thanks. He placed the rifle strap over his shoulder and the handheld one in his side belt as well. Bashir noticed that the phaser rifle was a type 3a rifle. He had preferred this rifle to the other Starfleet issued ones as it gave the holder much more comfort when holding the rifle. Taraníatar had noticed this when they were on the mission in the Badlands four years ago. Taraníatar continued handing out phasers to the other bridge crewmembers while Bashir got out of his chair and stepped over to the helm. He stood to Ezriís right so he was near her and Bowers to give out commands.

"Taraníatar, have you found that weak spot yet?" Bashir asked.

"Yes I have, uploading to tactical now." Returned Taraníatar who was back standing at the aft console with one hand holding his rifle and the other tapping the console.

"Good. Mr Bowers, target all weapons on that spot. Ezri, bring us round and begin another attack run patter delta twelve." ordered Bashir.

Ezri knew this pattern off by heart, it was Jadziaís favourite move. The Defiant would loop on itself until it was facing the enemy ship and she would bring the Defiant within weapons range and Bowers would discharge all of their fire power against the weak spot. She plotted in the final commands and the Defiant began its attack.

The Defiant looped on her self and headed straight for her prey. Her prey was coming around for its next attack but not before the Defiant had struck a mighty blow to the prey. Crippled.

An almighty cheer roared on the bridge of the Defiant. Success, thought Bashir. His first victory. On the viewscreen the other ship had taken heavy damage and from what Bashir could see they were leaking plasma from one of their nacelles.

"Julian, they are hailing us." Spoke Ezri. Everyone on the bridge went quiet. Bashir walked over to his command chair and took his rifle off his shoulder and placed it on the floor near to his chair. He sat down in the chair and got comfortable. He looked at where Ezri was sitting.

"Open a channel."

She nodded and the viewscreen changed from the damage ship to a man who was seriously hurt. He began to speak,

"Federation warship, you have severely damaged my ship. I suggest you get as far away from my ship, I have set the self destruct for a two minute countdown. But know this, we the Maquis will be avenged."

The viewscreen changed back to the view of the damage ship.

"The Maquis?" Nog said puzzled.

"Julian, I am setting an escape course away from that ship." Said Ezri, she was tapping on the helm controls moving away from the damaged ship. Bashir said nothing.

The Defiant moved away from its injured prey at high speed and was followed by the shockwave made by the destruction of the damaged ship.

"The Maquis ship has been destroyed." Reported Shar from the science station.

"Stand down from red alert, Ezri resume course for Europa Nova, full impulse." Ordered Bashir.

"Aye sir." Returned Dax.

"I thought the Dominion destroyed the Maquis ages ago." Said Bowers. The Lieutenant had turned his chair around from his station and was facing Bashir at his command chair.

"So did I." Nog said, he was also facing Bashir.

"It seems that we were wrong." Bashir turned round to Taraníatar and looked at him, "Do you know anything about this Taraníatar?"

"Yes. I knew about rumours that said the Maquis were not entirely eradicated. From what the rumours said in the last week of the Dominion War a group of Maquis took over a Dominion base inside the Bajoran Badlands. The base had a shipyard built with it and was going to be the Dominion last stand if the Federation had gained Cardassia. That is all I know." Taraníatar said.

"Any response to our hails, Chakotay?" asked Captain Janeway, she sitting in her command chair looking straight at her first officer who was tapping a number of commands into their personal console.

"No, not yet." He returned.

"Mr Brent, take us within five hundred kilometres and bring us to a full stop." Ordered Janeway. The young ensign nodded his head and pressed a few buttons on his console to bring Voyager within its distance of the Herringbone.

"Captain, the Herringbone has its shields online and phasers fully charged." Reported Barclay from the engineering station. He had returned to the bridge after making sure everything in Main Engineer was ok.

"Understood, Reg." Janeway responded.

"Kathryn, we maybe able to disable the Herringboneís systems." Said Chokatay.

"How?" She asked.

"The Soyuz class starships were brought back into drydock to have a computer error corrected. But only a few Soyuz-class starships had the correction done before that class was decommissioned. If the Herringbone still has that computer error we could use it for our advantage. A simple shutdown sequence should be enough to turn their power off and disrupt their systems long enough.."

"For us to destroy the Dreadnought. I like it. Prepare the shutdown sequence for transmitting." Janeway commanded.

"Captain, they are opening fire on us." Shouted Lieutenant Morris. She was Voyagerís new chief tactical and security officer and also a worthy successor for Tuvok, Janeway thought.

The golden beam from the Herringbone slashed against the hull of Voyager and did no damage to the ship. Voyager returned with five quantum torpedoes destroying the Herringbone shields and breaking a hole in its hull.

"Transmitting the shutdown sequence now." Said Chakotay.

The Herringbone began to shutdown, first the warp nacelles and then every other system. But not before the Dreadnought was launched.

"Captain, they have launched the Dreadnought against the colony." Shouted Barclay.

On the main view screen it showed the small but powerful ship heading for its target.

"Mr Brent, set a pursuit course for that Dreadnought - full impulse. Lieutenant Morris, target all of our weapons and fire at will." Janeway ordered.

Voyager was at high speed chasing the ship and opening fire on it. Streaks of Gold and bolts of blue and white where coming from Voyager hoping to end the Dreadnoughtís life before it hit its target.

"Captain, the USS Sheffield has just dropped out of warp." Reported Chakotay, "Captain, the Herringbone is hailing us."

"On screen."

The main viewer changed to a woman who Janeway thought must have been the commander. The woman looked like she had been dragged through hell and back. Her clothes looked dirty, her faced looked stressed and her body language showed that she was tired. She started to speak:

"Federation vessels, you will not be able to stop our Dreadnought. It will kill all of the Breen. I must warn you that if you are too close to the planet, you will be destroyed as well. Our deaths will be the first for the beginning of the Maquis, we will be avenged."

Voyager was rocked by the explosion from the destruction of the Herringbone. Then Voyager was caught by the USS Sheffieldís turquoise coloured tractor beam.

"Captain, the Sheffield is pulling us back, their Captain is telling us that we must get out of range of the planet." Announced Chakotay.

Janeway sighed, she wanted to save the colony, and it might have helped improve relations between the Federation and the Breen. But she knew Chakotay was right she could not risk her ship and crew anymore. She had already been a risk maker in the Delta Quadrant something she had regretted. "Alright, Mr Brent get us out of here, maximum warp."

Both Voyager and the Sheffield all stretched out and were gone in an instance.

"Commander Vaughn, there is an incoming message from the Enterprise for you." Reported Ensign Lang. She was sitting at the engineering station in OPS of Deep Space Nine.

Vaughn looked up at Kira. They were both sitting at the operations table and reading reports from different department heads on the station.

"Sir, Captain Picard is saying it is urgent."

"Colonel, can I take it in your office?" asked Vaughn

"Yeah of course." The Colonel replied. She was too busy reading the reports. She wanted to read them all before the rest of the task force arrived. She suspected that she was going to be busy once the fleet arrived. The Commander got out of his chair and walked over to the Colonelís office. "Please route the message to the Colonelís office ensign."

The doors opened and Vaughn went and sat in the Colonelís chair and pressed a button the command console to open the channel to the Enterprise. The black screen changed to Captain Picardís face. Vaughn thought to himself that it looked like the Captain was in his ready room.

"Jean-Luc, what can I do for you?" Vaughn started.

"I need to ask from you a favour."

"Fire ahead."

"I have asked for the USS Marco Polo to join our task force. The Marco Polo is a great ship. I took temporary command of her during the Iconian Incident of twenty-three-seventy-six. Sheís a fine ship. Deanna also took command, after I resumed command of the Enterprise during the Incident. But the probability is that she does not have a Captain."

Oh no, thought Vaughn, he knew what Picard was going to say next.

"Commander Jessie Davison has been put in command of her for the past four years. But the thing is the Marco Polo has only been giving menial tasks. She has never participated in large fleet movements or any type of extensive tactical situations. Thatís why Commander Davison has requested for a more experienced officer to take command of the Marco Polo. And I thought of you."

"Jean-Luc, Iím flattered, but I have duties here on Deep Space Nine. Colonel Kira needs me here."

"I know that. But you have been requesting that Starfleet assign another ship to the Station for a long time now. The Marco Polo is a fine ship. Her only flaw is that she does not have a great Captain in the chair. At least think about it."

"What about the Defiant. Iím her Commander."

"Well actually, Admiral Ross is sending orders to Kira to give full command of the Defiant over to Bashir, until further notice. Please Elias, think about it."

The Commander sighed, "Alright but Nerys is not going to be happy."

"Iíll send you all information on the Marco Polo, so you can familiarise yourself with her specs. Iíll see you in under two hours. Picard out."

The screen went black and Vaughn sat back in the chair. He thought to himself, Nerys is not going to like this

"What!" shouted Kira. Both Kira and Vaughn where in her office. Kira was not in a good mood. She had been up for nearly two entire days. She had been co-ordinating with the Militia over relief efforts to Europa Nova, making sure the Station was ready for the large task force, having strategy meetings with Captain Paris and now she is told her first officer is being reassigned. Vaughn knew that Kira needed some sleep, he had noticed over the past four years that if she does not get enough sleep she would always be in a temper for at least a week. It was an easy sign for him to see she always got long droopy black bags under her eyes.

"The Marco Polo needs a good Captain at the moment. So Picard has asked me to take temporary command."

"I thought you were going to take command of the Defiant when she gets back from Europa Nova." Kira said calmer. She was beginning to relax a bit, Vaughn observed.

"Admiral Ross has giving the orders that the Defiant will be under Julianís command until further notice."

Kira sat down in her chair. She was exhausted, she rubbed her nose and forehead and sighed. "I take it then I donít get a say in it."

"I donít know." He stroked his grey beard and started talking again, "but think about it this way Nerys, if this mission or what ever the task force is going to do here is a success we might be able to keep the Marco Polo here. We could use her as another defence ship along with the Defiant. Also she is a multi-role vessel. We could use her in the Gamma Quadrant for scientific missions. She would be bettered suited for scientific mission than the Defiant who has only a few science labs. "

"I suppose you are right."

Vaughn sat down in the chair opposite to Kiraís. "I have already looked at the Marco Poloís specification. She has only recently come out of Spacedock from a major refit. She is nothing like what any other Saber class starship, sheís a Q-ship."

"A what ship?" asked Kira.

"A Q-ship. Itís a starship outfitted with more weapons then it should have. There are mainly used to help protect convoys and other less capable ship. They are used to trick attackers to believing they are small and less capable. Captain Picard has the highest recommendation for its crew."

Kira shook her head, "Well it seems I must wish you good luck, Captain."

"Thank you NerysÖ"

Before Vaughn could finish his sentence he was interrupted by the comm chirp.

"Colonel Kira, this is Ensign Lang, the Defiant has just dropped out of warp and is now docking, Commander Bashir is asking to speak to urgently."

Kira tapped her combadge, "Alright Ensign, tell Doc no I mean Commander Bashir that me and Commander Vaughn will meet him at the airlock."

"Aye, sir." Returned the Ensign.

Both Kira and Vaughn got out of their chairs and walked out of the office heading towards the docking port.

The doors to the airlock rolled open and Bashir and Dax walked down from the airlock. Waiting for them on the other side was Kira and Vaughn. All four officers were now standing in front each other.

"Report Commander, how did the mission go?" asked Kira.

"Fine, the medical supplies were giving to Europa Nova, but we ran into some trouble on the way there."

"What sort of trouble?" Kira inquired.

"We were attackedÖ" began Bashir. He looked at Ezri and she looked at him, he turned back to look at Kira and Vaughn, "Öby the Maquis."

Kira and Vaughn were astonished to hear what Bashir was saying. For a few seconds none of them spoke, Vaughn broke the silence of the four officers, "How do you know it was the Maquis? Did they tell you they were the Maquis?"

"Yes they did, and they said they will be avenged." Bashir replied.

"If the Maquis have returned it could mean a destabilisation to peace in this sector." Ezri said.

Kira nodded, Ezri was right she thought. It could be the reason how the bombing of the Dominion attack ship that Odo had told her about had come to be. She knew what she had to do now.

"Julian, I want a full report on what happened on your mission. By the way - congratulations. The Defiant is yours until further notice and I want the Defiant launched and ready to defend the station if it is attacked."

"Nerys, Taraníatar thinks he might know something about their base. He was also the one who found the weak spot on the Maquis ship, I would like to keep him on the Defiant as a Strategy Advisor." Bashir spoke.

"Alright Taraníatar stays on the Defiant but I want to know everything he knows." Kira turned and looked at Vaughn. "Elias, I want you to get in contact with Captain Picard and tell him of the current situation. Iíll speak to Captain Paris and the Bajoran Militia."

The four officers went their ways. Bashir and Ezri went back to the Defiant. Kira and Vaughn went back to OPS.

Captain Picard was standing behind Lieutenant Perim at the helm station. He had just got word from Commander Vaughn about the return of the Maquis and he had informed the rest of his crew and the task force. He had also had been in contact with Captain Janeway who had also told about her run in with the Maquis inside Breen Space and the Maquis destroying a Breen colony. She had returned to Starbase 471 to get in contact with Starfleet Command and inform them about the current situation. Janeway had told Picard Starfleet had given her orders to take full control of Starfleet forces in that sector.

"Lieutenant, how long until we reach Deep Space Nine?" Picard asked,

"Just under fifteen minutes, Sir." The young Lieutenant responded.

"Good, carry on Kell." Picard returned. He had rarely called any member of his junior crew by their first names but Lieutenant Kell Perim was an exception. During a diplomatic mission, Perim was flying a shuttlecraft with Picard. He was rendezvousing with the USS Challenger in a nearby system. The Enterprise was docked at Starbase 142 so the Challenger was going to take Picard and Janeway to a Gorn diplomatic engagement. Perim and Picardís shuttlecraft was attacked by Ferengi pirates. Their shuttle was forced to land on a class-M planet. They had spent two weeks together before the Enterprise found them.

Lieutenant Commander Data was sitting at his station when he reported:

"Captain, long range sensors have detected a massive sub-space distortion right behind us."

Picard walked over to Dataís side and looked down at the androidís console. He saw the same thing.

"How far away Data?"

"Just under two light years and closing, sir."

Then on Dataís console new readings from the sensors had come up.

"Sir, sensors detect a fleet decloaking, itís Klingon." Data announced.

"Onscreen." Picard ordered.

The main viewscreen changed to see the large fleet decloaking. Picard recognised a number of the classes of Klingon ships which were decloaking; Vorícha, Bríel, Kítinga, Kívort and Neghívar.

"My God," Troi said from her chair.

"Captain, sensors detect two-hundred and sixteen Klingon ships decloaked." Riker reported.

"Hail them, Number One." Picard said.

"Haling them, we getting a response from the lead-ship." Riker returned.

"Onscreen."

The view of the Klingon fleet changed to a face Picard had not seen in some time, an old friend of the crew. Worf.

"Worf, what the devil are you doing on that ship?" Picard stated.

"Chancellor Martok has given me command of this fleet to help out the Federation against the Maquis." Worf replied.

"When did you find out about the Maquis?"

"The Maquis attacked two Vorícha attack class cruisers inside Cardassian space. There were only four attackers but they were all destroyed. The starships returned back to the Empire and told the High Council of the Maquis attack. Chancellor Martok decided that the attack was an act of war against the Empire. He believed that Deep Space Nine might be a target for the Maquis. Chancellor Martok knew that DS9 would need support from the Klingon Empire, so he ordered that a fleet to be assembled to help DS9 out. He thought if a large fleet was to go it might strike fear into the Maquis before they attack the station."

"Well then, Mr Worf, it seems you will be following us then. Its good to see you, Worf."

Worf nodded and the Enterpriseís viewscreen changed back to show the massive Klingon fleet.

 


Proceed to Part II

 

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