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Star Trek Trio: The Maquis Revenge - Part II 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

 

Chapter 6

The wardroom of Deep Space Nine was buzzing with sounds of many people talking. Colonel Kira could not remember the last time she had seen so many Starfleet captains in one room, there were a few she could recognise. There was Captain Picard, Captain Paris, Captain Raymer and Captain Reynolds that she knew but the others she had no clue who they were. Commander Vaughn was standing next to her. He had just beamed back after meeting his new crew on the Marco Polo, he had told her that he had enjoyed meeting them all and he looked forward to working with them.

"Anyone here you recognise Elias?" she asked him

"A few. Captains Shelby, Eden, DeSoto, Jackson, Hawkins but that’s just to name a few."

"You’ve been in Starfleet too long."

He looked at her and smiled and she smiled back at him.

"I think I have met Captain Shelby." She quietly said to Vaughn

"We did, four years ago at the holo-conference on the Iconian Gateways."

Kira looked at the Captain a bit more. She did meet her. She remembered. Captain Shelby was standing talking to Captain Picard. From what Kira could see the two of them knew each other well. Kira could feel a great dark shadow casting over her. She looked up and saw a face she had not seen in five years.

"Worf!" she cried out.

"Colonel Kira, it is good to see you." Worf replied.

Kira put her arm around Worf and gave him a hug. She knew it was not very Klingon but she had not seen him in a long time and she had hoped he would not mind. She let go of him and looked up to him.

"How are things on Qo’nos?" she asked him.

"Being an Ambassador has many benefits."

Kira looked at Commander Vaughn who was a bit confused on how Kira knew Worf.

"How rude of me, Ambassador Worf let me introduce you to my first officer and the new commander of the USS Marco Polo: Commander Elias Vaughn. Commander Vaughn this Ambassador Worf, he was stationed on Deep Space Nine as Chief-Strategic Officer to Captain Sisko. He left after the war to become Ambassador for the Federation on Qo’nos."

Vaughn extended his hand to Worf and the both men shook each others hand.

"Both myself and the Ambassador have met before during the Iconian Gateway incident, it’s good to see you again, Ambassador." Said Vaughn.

"Likewise, Commander." Worf returned.

Kira looked back at Worf. "So I hear from Captain Picard that Chancellor Martok has given you full command of the Klingon Fleet that you have brought with you."

"That is correct. Although I have two Klingon captains who also help me in commanding the fleet but the Chancellor put me in full command. He believed it was for the best as him and myself know a lot about this sector and its surroundings."

"Seems logical, buts what with the Starfleet uniform?" she asked.

Worf was wearing his uniform that he used to wear on DS9. He wore the grey uniform, with the red shirt underneath. Kira noticed that he had the three full gold pips of the rank of commander.

"Chancellor Martok thought it would be better if I wore my Starfleet uniform as the Federation is my first line of loyalty."

"I understand." Kira said.

By the time the two of them had finished their conservation, Captain Picard asked if everyone could take a seat. Everyone did as they where told. Kira sat at the end closest to Picard and facing opposite to her was Captain Paris. Next to Kira was Commander Vaughn. Worf had decided to sit next to Paris. Picard had asked for silence. Picard stood up and tugged on his uniform shirt.

"Thank you all for attending this meeting. As you all are aware, Deep Space Nine was attacked by the Dominion a few days ago. The attack on the station destroyed one of the station’s pylons but that pylon has now been replaced. You all have seen the message which Colonel Kira had received from the Dominion’s leader Odo. Telling us that they did not sanction the attack on the station. The attack was performed and carried out by a rogue faction. You all know about the bomb which killed the Dominion diplomats in the Gamma Quadrant. From what Odo has told us it consisted of Federation and Klingon technology. We have now good reasons to believe who might have done it. The Maquis."

The room was silent, nobody said anything. They all knew the disruptions the Maquis had brought the Federation after the peace treaty with the Cardassians had been signed.

"How did they get the bomb in the Gamma Quadrant?" asked Captain Reynolds.

"That doesn’t matter, it’s been done and we have to prevent them from doing it again." Captain Shelby said.

"Captain Shelby is right. We need to prevent the Maquis from entering the Gamma Quadrant." Kira commented.

Shelby smiled at Kira and Kira smiled back at her.

"But how?" Picard inquired.

Once again there was silence.

"Mines." Was the only word that came from Captain Paris’ direction. Everyone all looked at Paris. "If we were to mine the wormhole entrance the Maquis could not enter the Gamma Quadrant and if this rogue faction of Jem’Hadar decided to return they won’t get far."

"I like it." Picard said. "But what type of mines should we used though."

"They would have to be cloaked so they would not see them." Said Worf.

"Powerful enough to do damage even the largest Dominion ship." Came the response from Captain Eden. Captain Eden was a young captain who had been giving command of the USS Kent, a Steamrunner class starship, when his captain was killed in a Dominion attack in the early stages of the Dominion War. Picard liked Eden he was young, energetic and had a great bond with his crew. Captain James Eden was a short human with dark blonde hair, he had hazel coloured eyes and he had a rounded shape face.

"Why not use self-replicating mines again. We did it during the Dominion War. Why not use them again." spoke Captain Picard.

Kira looked over at Captain Picard. "The Dominion found a way to destroy them using an anti-graviton beam."

"Yes I know. But we must have found a way to prevent this by now." Expressed Picard.

"I don’t think they ever found the a way around it." Kira replied.

"Well, it looks like that options out the way then." Picard stated.

"Maybe not, Captain." Paris pronounced.

Everyone again all looked around at Paris. Paris stood up from his chair and walked over to the wall console in the wardroom. He tapped a few buttons and then asked the computer what he was looking for:

"Computer, access the Voyager Database and locate information on all Borg weapons encountered by the USS Voyager."

Picard felt a chill go down the back of his neck from hearing the word Borg.

"Please give voice authorisation." The computer asked.

"Authorisation Paris five eight alpha tango."

"Specify which Borg weapon system."

"Access and show a display of a multikinetic neutronic mine."

The computer changed to show information and a schematic of the mine. Paris was looking through the information there.

"Got ya." He said to himself.

Picard walked over to stand next to him to see what he was looking at. Paris stood next to the display so everyone else in the room could see the schematic.

"Behold the Borg super mine!" Paris exclaimed.

Picard moved as well and was still fixed at looking at the schematic.

"This mine has self-replicating abilities too, and I am sure that a anti-graviton beam could not knock it out. The mine has an explosive yield of five million isotons, bio-neural circuitry and reinforced hull plating."

"With an explosive yield like that it would be enough to destroy the station and half of the Bajoran system." Commander Vaughn stated.

"If we install the Borg technology into a standard Federation mine casing, it would be a lot better." Paris said.

"But it’s Borg technology." announced Captain Eden.

"And so what if its Borg technology? If we can use it to our advantage over the Maquis then we should use it." Paris replied.

"Agreed. Captain Paris, how long will it take for the mines to be deployed in front of the wormhole’s entrance?" asked Picard.

"It depends, if we can get more than one ship doing the task we could get the mines up and ready in four days, maybe less."

Picard looked over at Colonel Kira, "Colonel do you think the Bajoran Government would mind us doing this?"

"I don’t think so, if they know it is for the safety of Bajor then they will agree." Replied the Colonel.

"Good." Captain Picard looked back at Captain Paris. "Captain Paris, I’m giving you command of this assignment."

"Aye sir. May I ask that the USS Trident and USS Ronald assist in deploying the mines. Hopefully with them and the Kennedy we could get the mines out quicker."

"Of course. Captain Shelby and Captain Jackson please give full co-operation to Captain Paris." Picard ordered.

Both women Captains nodded in agreement. Captain Picard and Captain Paris both went and sat down at the table. Picard glanced over to Worf,

"Ambassador Worf. I am sure that we will be needing assistance from the Klingon task force. Would it be possible you could assign a few of ships to protect the Kennedy, the Trident and the Ronald in case they are attacked by the Maquis while deploying the minefield?"

"Of course, Captain. I will even order that a squadron of warship be sent to protect Bajor from an attack, if that is ok Colonel?" Worf was now looking at Colonel Kira who gave her response with a nod.

"It should be ok, I’ll get in contact with the Militia and the Chamber of the Ministers, I’m sure they would not mind the assistance."

"Also along with that squadron I want a few of our starships to be sent. Captain DeSoto I want you and Captain Eden to take the Hood and the Kent along with the Berlin, Endeavour and Renegade to protect Bajor. If that is all then, let’s get started." Picard commanded.

Everyone in the room stood up and went their separate ways.

Captain Paris was sitting in his ready room staring out of the window. From his view he could see the powerful Galaxy-class starship USS Trident. Both the Trident and the USS Ronald were assisting the Kennedy in deploying the minefied in front of the wormhole entrance. The three starships had only a quarter of the minefield left to put out. His ready room itself was in a mess. Ever since the start all of the recent events had happened with the Maquis and the Breen he had not had the opportunity to tidy up his ready room. His uniform jacket was flung across his sofa and he was just wearing his officer’s vest. PADDs covered his desk and old coffee mugs were also sitting there. All of them cold and had lost their taste. His gold plated models of the Delta Flyer, Voyager, the Kennedy, the Aries IV module, Zefram Cochrane’s warpship the Phoenix, a version of the old Saturn V rockets used in the old Apollo missions and Enterprise NX-01. All were hanging off from their support frames or were broken in bits. The glass cabinet that covered them all was also smashed up. Glass was everywhere. He was going to wait until he had time to clear up a bit and get someone in to repair the damage to his little spaceships and the cabinet. Paris had two cabinets like this in his ready room. One held all of the spaceships he had either worked on or admired when he was a young boy. In fact Captain Picard had given him the model of Enterprise NX-01 as a good luck present. The other cabinet held not space ships but naval ships of Earth’s past. Just like the starships they were all gold plated. He had only four ships in there. The HMS Victory and the Royal yacht Britannia, both of which were part of the British navy fleet history. Along with them were the USS Enterprise and the USS Eisenhower both of which were part of the American Navy during the late twentieth century. They were not damaged but the glass cabinet was fractured. In his ready room also was all of his pictures he had along his wall or standing on shelves. One was of him and the rest of the Voyager senior crew assembled in the mess hall for Ancestor’s eve. The others were of him and B’Elanna on their wedding day, one of Miral, his daughter. There was also a picture of Admiral Janeway and him just before he took command of the Kennedy. In the picture she was handing over the ‘keys’ to the Delta Flyer to him. The Delta Flyer was her present to him when he was promoted to Captain. Also, there was a picture of B’Elanna, Miral and himself all outside his parent’s house in San Francisco. The last picture was of Harry and him in their dress uniform. Both who each had commands of their own and held the rank of captain. The Doctor had taken the picture just outside Starfleet Command Headquarters just after Harry and Tom had taken time to go climbing at Yellowstone Park.

He had his head leaning against the glass of the window. He had just recently finished talking to Captain Janeway. She had informed him on how the Maquis situation was getting out of hand inside Breen Space. At the moment no Federation ship was able to recover any Breen survivors. Paris had told Captain Janeway about the events that are happening in and near Bajor. Starfleet Intelligence had apprised the fleet that the Maquis had captured Opak Nor, a Cardassian station similar to Deep Space Nine and that the Maquis had now been attacking anything inside Cardassian space.

"Astrometrics to the Captain." Came a voice over the speakers inside the ready room.

Paris tapped his combadge. He recognised the voice, it was Lieutenant Sean Summers. "Go ahead, Lieutenant."

"Please report to Astrometrics, sir." Responded Summers

"On my way," Paris got up from his chair and walked out of his ready room.

The doors to the Astrometrics lab opened and Paris walked in. The Astrometrics lab was very similar to the one on Voyager but much bigger. At the front console stood Lieutenant Summers and Lieutenant Commander Seven of Nine. Lieutenant Summers was about the same height as Paris and he had brown hair and brown eyes. Summers was one of the few members of the crew who had worked on a starship before this assignment, he used to serve aboard the USS Sutherland.

Paris was curious why his chief engineer was in Astrometrics, but Paris knew that Seven had always preferred the Astrometrics lab from Main Engineering. Seven had changed over the years. Her surgery from removing all of her Borg implants. She had changed a lot. No longer did she have her hair all tied up like she used to back on Voyager but she had it cropped. The end of her hair bobbed around her chin. Also now she no longer wore the different coloured bodysuits she used to wear also on Voyager but a Starfleet uniform now she was the chief engineer. She was a different woman

Seven was standing at one of the auxiliary console and Summers was standing at the main console. Paris walked over to the both of them,

"Report." He ordered.

Summers and Seven both turned around to meet their captain’s eyes.

"We have picked up something on long range sensors which might be interesting." Seven started.

"The sensors have detected high amounts neutrino and gravimetric energy along with a intense quantity of subspace radiation." said Summers.

"A wormhole?" asked Paris.

Summers turned back around to the main console and tapped on a few buttons. The larger viewscreen in Astrometrics changed and showed the position of the high amounts of energy and radiation. "At first that’s what I thought, but I got Commander Seven to have a look and we found out that it’s not a wormhole."

Paris and turned to look at Seven,

"It’s a transwarp conduit." Seven returned.

"Borg?" Paris inquired.

"Possible. When we reached Earth back on Voyager we may not have destroyed all of the conduits, some might have stayed intact and where not affected." Seven said.

Paris looked back at Summers, "Sean, how far away is the conduit?"

"If we use our own warp engines at transspatial speeds, we can be there in three days." The young Lieutenant replied.

"Are there any other starship nearby?" Paris wondered.

"Yes sir, the USS Lakota. But she can also be there at the same time." Said Summers

"Captain, the conduit is near Starbase 121 and near the Minerak system." Seven reported.

"Send the co-ordinates to the helm, Sean. Seven, how long before we finish deploying the minefield?" asked Paris.

"If we were to continue, another two hours. If it was just left to the Trident and the Ronald then it would be at least another three hours before the minefield will be operational." stated Seven.

"I’ll get in contact with Captain Picard." Paris declared and he walked out of the lab leaving Seven and Sean standing together in the lab.

"I don’t like the idea of you going off especially now, the Kennedy may be needed if the Maquis attack." Spoke Captain Picard. Picard was talking to Paris from his ready room. Paris was also sitting in his ready room and looking at the screen in which Picard was talking from.

"I understand, but we can’t afford to be engaging two threats in one go. If it is the Borg, we should be ready. The Lakota and Starbase 121 will never be able defend themselves from a Borg attack. The Kennedy was built to fight the Borg and it’s the fastest ship in the fleet. It would take weeks to get a fleet to Starbase 121 while the Kennedy can be there in three days." Paris was protesting by now for Picard to let him go to Starbase 121 and assist with whatever problems they might encounter.

"Alright Captain, I’ll contact HQ and inform them, but I am going to regret this in the morning. Good Luck. Picard out." And Picard was gone from Paris’ screen. That was easy thought Paris. He would get in contact with Captain Shelby and tell her of the change and he would put her in command of finishing the deployment of the minefield.

On the bridge of the Defiant, Commander Bashir was standing behind Lieutenant Dax.

Bashir broke the silence on the bridge with asking Dax:

"Anything?"

"Nothing." She returned.

Bashir turned around and returned back to the command chair in the middle. The Defiant along with the Marco Polo was searching for the USS Andro. Starfleet had lost contact with her. The Defiant and Marco Polo were sent to find her. Both ships were patrolling near the Bajoran Badlands, where the Phoenix was last known to be. The Andro was an Intrepid-class starship and her last orders were to gather as much information as possible on Maquis movements in and around the Badlands. Starfleet believed that the Andro was either destroyed or captured by the Maquis.

"Sir, sensors are indicating an increase in energy output to our starboard side." Stated Nog from the Engineering console. Bashir walked over to Nog and looked at the sensor readouts.

"Mr Shar, ask the Marco Polo for confirmation." Bashir ordered.

Shar nodded and began sending a message to the Marco Polo. Bashir looked down at Nog,

"What can it be, Nog?" he asked.

"Unknown, I’ve never seen this type of energy readouts before."

"Sir, Commander Vaughn has confirmed that the Marco Polo has detected the energy signatures and are also investigating it as well." Shar announced.

"Thank you Lieutenant." Replied Bashir.

Bashir turned around to look at Ezri, he was about to give her an order when,

"Sir, a vessel has appeared on those co-ordinates." Pronounced Nog

"On screen." Bashir ordered.

Everyone on the bridge of the Defiant all turned to look at the main viewer. There was the image of an Intrepid-class starship. Two objects which were illuminated white and blue headed from the ship’s torpedo launchers.

"Red alert!" Bashir yelled.

"Julian, those torpedo’s are reconfigured with tri-cobalt warheads!" stated Dax.

"Are they heading for us, Mr Bowers?" Bashir was now looking over at the tactical station where Lieutenant Bowers was sitting

"Maybe, sir!" returned an answer from Bowers.

The torpedoes then hit two separate objects and in an instance were gone.

"Report?" Bashir asked. He was backing in his command chair waiting to hear what had just happened.

"The torpedoes hit two cloaked ships near our port aft sir." Came a response from Shar.

"Sir, tri-cobalt warheads aren’t that precise." Proclaimed Bowers.

"Can we determine if that’s the Andro?" Bashir inquired.

"It is sir, their transponder frequency matches that of the Andro’s." replied Nog.

"Sir, incoming message from the Marco Polo. Commander Vaughn has reported that he just spoke with the Andro’s captain, a Captain Rosa Berman and he continues to say that the Andro just destroyed two Jem’Hadar attack ships under Maquis control." Shar announced. "Commander Vaughn says that we are to return back to Deep Space Nine at warp six, Sir."

Bashir looked over at the helm, he and Vaughn had came quite close over the past four years, together they had been working on ways to end Section 31. Bashir trusted him with his life.

"Do as he says Ezri, return us home at warp six...engage."

On the bridge of the Enterprise Captain Picard was sitting in the command chair, overviewing the recent reports on Maquis activity in and around Cardassian space. To his right sat Commander Riker. He was given a report back to Ensign Campbell who had just delivered a memo to Riker from Lieutenant Commander La Forge in main engineering. Campbell walked away and entered the turbolift and was gone. Riker turned to look at Picard. "Everything ok Captain?" Riker asked cheerfully.

"Yes, Number One. Everything seems to be fine." Picard returned.

Riker sighed. He knew what he had to do but he hated doing it. "Captain can we have a word in a private."

Picard looked at Riker. Picard saw the face that Riker was pulling, it was the face he had seen many times, it was the face that said: You working too hard and me, Beverly and Deanna all agree you need to get some rest. Picard leaned over to Riker so no one else on the bridge could hear him and he said quietly in Riker’s ear,

"I am perfectly fine and don’t think about getting Beverly and Deanna on me."

Riker smiled and whispered back to Picard, "You know me too well."

Both them where now smiling, Picard leaned back into his chair and finished reading his report. Riker was about to tap his commbadge to inform Beverly that Picard had found out when Lieutenant Perim began to speak aloud,

"Sir, three hundred and sixteen Romulan vessels have just de-cloaked in orbit of DS9".

 

Chapter 7

“Onscreen.” Picard ordered. He stood up from his command chair and walked over to stand behind Lieutenant Perim. Picard was astonished in all of his time that he has been a captain he has never seen such a large Romulan fleet like the one he was seeing on the viewscreen right now. In the background of the bridge Picard heard Riker order all of the crew to report to their stations.

“Number one open a channel to their lead ship.”

“Channel open sir.” Murmured Riker.

“This is Captain Jean-Luc Picard on board the Federation starship USS Enterprise, in command of all Federation vessels in this sector to the Commander of the Romulan fleet which has just de-cloaked in orbit of Deep Space Nine, please reply.” Picard looked over to Riker and gave him the order to end transmission. Picard walked over and sat back down in his chair.

The turbolift doors opened and out stepped Counsellor Troi. Troi took her chair next to Picard on his left.

“Trouble?” Troi asked.

“The Romulans have just de-cloaked near DS9 with a fleet of over three hundred ships.” Lieutenant Perim answered.

“Any response from our hails, number one?” Picard inquired.

“No sir.”

“Open the channel again, Will.” Picard ordered.

Picard heard the beep that met the Riker had opened the channel again he started again, “Romulan fleet, this is Captain Picard please reply to our hails.”

“Sir we getting a response.” Declared Riker.

“Onscreen.”

The main screen changed and facing Picard was a female Romulan. She was much different from every other Romulan he had seen before. She had tawny coloured hair not like other Romulans who have black or brown hair.

“Captain Picard, I am Admiral Tenek, commander of this Romulan fleet, we are here to fight alongside our Federation and Klingon allies.”

Picard looked over at Riker, both of them looked surprised, so did everyone else on the bridge of the Enterprise. Picard looked back at the viewscreen,

“Then I must welcome you to Deep Space Nine, Admiral.”

“Captain’s Log stardate 59854. The Kennedy is approaching Starbase 121 at trans-spatial speeds after a transwarp conduit has been detected less then twenty light years away from the base. We are to believe it might be the Borg. I have already spoken to the Captain of the USS Lakota who is also on their way to Starbase 121. Starbase 121’s commander, Commander Russell, has informed me that the Starbase has launched a number of probes towards the conduit but all have been destroyed. Commander Russell’s main concern is the nearby Minerak System which has been prepared for a group of colonists. The system also contains the Minerak Research Station which is a large facility for many research projects which are important to the Federation. My only fears are that this maybe the last time we will fight the Borg and that there might be no way of preventing them from destroying Earth and the Federation.”

“Approaching the Starbase, Captain.” Lieutenant Darwin reported from the helm.

“Drop us out of warp and go to one fifth impulse power.” Paris ordered.

“Sir, sensors indicate that the Lakota has already arrived. There’s even another two more starships here Captain.” Stated Carson.

“I thought the Lakota was the only starship that could get here in time?” a puzzled Johnson inquired.

“So did I.” Said Paris. Paris stood up from his command chair and walked over to where Ensign Young was sitting at the operations console. Paris was about to ask what ships they were but he was interrupted by Lieutenant Alex Carson who was saying that the Starbase was hailing them.

“Onscreen.” Paris replied. Paris looked straight forward at the face of Commander Russell. She was a tall human with brown eyes and short sandy coloured hair that was all tied up at the back, she even had purple highlights through her hair.

“Captain I am glad you have came.” Came the response from Commander Russell.

“That’s ok, I have a question to ask we are detecting two more starships in orbit over the Starbase, who are they?”

“The Defiant class starship is the USS Stevro and the Nebula class starship is the USS Lukeson. We use the Stevro for defence and taking cargo to the science station and we use the Lukeson for all kinds of missions from Nebula analyses to Star gazing!”

“Ah, very well, its just we never got told this.”

“Oh, apologies Captain I thought you already knew.”

“Don’t worry Commander, it’s ok.”

“Very well. Oh, one more last thing Captain about the colonists that were coming to settle down in the Minerak system all of them have decided not to come and have been reallocated back to Alpha Centauri.”

“Oh what a shame, I take it they heard about the conduit?”

“Yes and every single one of them requested for their transport to turn around. Starfleet Command has decided to remove all of the installations on Minerak Prime after this matter with the conduit has finished. It’s a shame it would have been nice to have a Colony nearby.”

“Yes it is a shame, but we must sort out the conduit.”

“Well I’ll leave you to it. Russell out.”

Paris walked over and sat back down in his chair, “Did anybody think that conversation seemed a bit weird?” Paris asked.

“She seemed nervous.” Johnson replied.

Paris nodded in agreement. “I was thinking that as well.” Paris turned to look to his left at Counsellor Turner. “Heather, your opinion?”

“I agree with Michael, she seemed worried, nervous, tensed, anxious and restless. It’s as she is concerned that she will make a mistake. I’ve checked her file, she only became Commander of the Starbase a year ago after her Captain was killed after trying to save the station. He sacrificed himself by manually ejecting the station’s primary reactors. Apparently he was seriously burnt by the high temperatures of the plasma flow. He was able to eject the reactor and save the station but paid the consequence of giving up his life for his crew. The file goes on saying that the entire crew was effected by his death and Starfleet had to send over a team of counsellors to help them through it. As a crew they are all very well close to each other like a large family.” She responded

“Well I know what’s it like to be in the trenches for some time, far from the Federation. I think it’s common for people who work so close together everyday to form those type of relationships.” Mentioned Paris.

“Many psychiatrists since the dawn of the Federation and its mission into exploring have seen that starship crew when they spend long times with each other, the crew become a family unit and they care for each other just like a brother would care for another brother or sister.”

“I know what you mean, Heather. After Voyager returned home from the Delta Quadrant the entire crew spent three months talking to counsellors about their experiences and the relations they had created with each other. Just look at me I have a wife and child from living on Voyager for seven years.” Paris joked.

“You regret being on Voyager, Captain?” Turner questioned.

“Not for one nano-second. If Captain Janeway had never of rescued me from that penal-colony I would have been still there today. I would never trade in the life experiences I got from Voyager. I may have died on Voyager but I knew it would have been worth it all even for all the gold pressed latinum in the universe!” Paris smiled, talking about Voyager reminded him of the good times he had on it. His wedding with B’Elanna. His promotion. The many late nights that him and a number of the crew spent on the holodecks. The construction of the Delta Flyer. Harry, the Doctor, Captain Janeway and himself playing out different roles in the Adventures of Captain Proton to help in releasing Voyager from a layer of subspace. But his favourite memory would be the birth of his daughter. “Well enough remembering about the past, we have a conduit to investigate.”

“So you think the station is damaged enough to attack it and destroy it?” Janeway inquired.

“We think so.” Replied Chakotay.

Both Janeway and Chakotay were in her ready room standing near her desk looking at a display of Breen shipyard. The USS Challenger reported that they detected the Maquis attacking the shipyard and taking control of it. She was standing with her back to the ready room window while Chakotay was standing parallel to her. Janeway was holding a cup of coffee in one hand and she took a taste out it, she could feel the hotness of the beverage gradually heating every part of her body, she took the cup and placed it down on her desk. She turned away from Chakotay and stepped up onto the balcony in her ready room. She turned back around to face Chakotay and leaned against the beam that separated her desk from the window and the replicator. Chakotay gazed over to where she was standing and looked her straight in to the face. Janeway stared down at her feet and massaged her forehead. She then looked back at Chakotay and took in a deep breath.

“What’s wrong, Kathryn?” he asked. Chakotay only called Janeway by her first name purely when him and her came to a point in the daily lives when they had to either talk about the crew, the ship or their relationship as Captain and First officers and even as friends.

“Early on today I had spoken to Admiral Hayes at Starfleet Command. It seems that Command is worried with this new Maquis crisis.” Janeway turned around and sat down on the turquoise couch that swirled around the ready room window. Chakotay strolled over and sat next to her.

“What is it that they are worried about?” he inquired.

“Starfleet want to know how this is affecting you and many other people throughout the Federation who used to be part of the Maquis.” She answered.

“Are you questioning my loyalty?”

“No, but you know what command is like.” Was the only thing she could say to him.

The room fell quiet, neither of them said a thing and then Chakotay broke the awkward silence.

“Seven years ago, just when we hit Borg space, you said to me that you couldn’t imagine a day without me. Along with many other events that had happened during our seven year trip in the Delta Quadrant I must have shown that my allegiance is now with you and the Federation.”

“And I still can’t imagine a day without you by my side, you’re the finest first officer I have ever had. Without you I don’t think I could have got Voyager home on my own.” Janeway responded. “I have already informed Starfleet that they shouldn’t worry about you, but I need to know from you, that if I give the ordered to destroy a Maquis vessel or a station that you will support me and won’t go against me. I need to know what your thoughts are on the Maquis, do you sympathise with them, Chakotay?”

These words were the type Janeway would never think that she would be saying to Chakotay but she needed to know what he thought about the current Maquis situation.

“Ten years ago I decided to join you by your side and since that day I have never gone against you, I think what this Maquis is doing is wrong.”

“I believe you.” She told him, she looked at him and smiled. “Begin preparing a plan for the attack against the shipyard.”

Chakotay nodded and got up and walked out of her ready room.

“Dax to Bashir.” Came the voice over the comm,

“Bashir here, go ahead Ezri.” Bashir responded. Bashir was sitting in his ready room, where he was going through the Starfleet Database on the Maquis, hoping he could find an edge over them. But so far he could find nothing of use.

“Julian, there’s a priority one transmission coming from the USS Cerberus. Admiral Ross needs to speak to you.” Dax reported.

“Send it to my console down here, Ezri.” Bashir requested. He sat up in his chair and tapped a button on his person console.

“Voice authorization Bashir Omega One Echo Nine.”

The console screen changed from the Starfleet computer layout to Admiral Ross’ face.

“Admiral, what can I do for you?” Bashir asked at once.

“I’ve just finished reading your report on the Europa Nova mission, good job Julian. I always knew you would be a good commander. The reason I am speaking to you is that I have some good news and some bad news.”

“What’s the good news Admiral?” Bashir inquired.

“Starfleet Command are impressed with you and your crews attitude towards recent events and they have decided to promote you to the full rank of Captain.

A number of your crew who have also done very well are also being promoted. The bad news is that the Defiant is being reallocated somewhere else. The Defiant will no longer be Deep Space Nine’s bodyguard.”

Bashir did not know what to say, he speechless.

“That’s it, we leaving?” asked Nog.

Nog along with the rest of the senior crew where all sitting around a large circular table in the mess hall in the Defiant. It had only been a second after Bashir had told the senior crew about their orders from Starfleet and already Bashir was getting objections.

“I don’t like it like the rest of you but we have to follow our orders. I’ve been told that the reassignment is not permanent.” Bashir spoke from one end of the table.

“So how long are we going to be away for?” queried Dax from Bashir’s right.

“At the moment I don’t know.”

Bashir was beginning to hate himself for accepting to take command of the Defiant, but he knew that this type of thing would happen. It was exactly like when the Defiant was forced to serve from Starbase 375 during the first few months of the Dominion war after Captain Sisko ordered the evacuation of Deep Space Nine.

“So from now on we are no longer part of Deep Space Nine, we are now the full crew of the Defiant. Ezri, you are promoted to the full rank of Commander, Sam and Nog you both now hold the rank of Lieutenant Commander and Shar you hold the full rank of Lieutenant.” Bashir spoke.

“And I take it you have been promoted to Captain?” asked Dax.

“That’s right. Ezri, you are now permanently assigned as my first officer and chief conn officer, Sam you will stay as chief security and tactical officer, and its the same for Nog who will stay as chief engineer and Shar who will also stay as chief science officer.” Bashir ordered.

“Who will be Chief Medical Officer?” Shar quietly asked.

“The new AMH.” Bashir responded.

“A hologram? Is going to be our CMO?” Dax inquired.

“That’s right.” Bashir replied.

“Sir, there’s one more thing, who will be the second officer?” quizzed Bowers.

“Nog will be second officer.” Answered Bashir.

“Sir, with all due respect, I should be made second officer.” Demanded Bowers.

“I’m not going to have my crew fighting over who’s going to be in command. I’ve considered both of you as second officer as I know both of you could do the job. But I know Nog has more command experience than you, Sam, and know if myself or Ezri are not present to take command that you will make a good first officer towards Nog.” Bashir pronounced. “If that is all, Ezri prepare the crew for our departure.”

Sitting at the long table in the wardroom of Deep Space Nine was Captain Picard, Commander/Ambassador Worf, Colonel Kira and Admiral Tenek. Picard was sitting at the end of the table, next to his right was Kira and too his left was Worf. Sitting next to Worf was Tenek.

“Our own forces have been attacked by the Maquis, five of our warbirds were attacked near the Bajoran badlands. Although the Maquis fought for some time they were not successful in winning against us. After the attack the Romulan Senate decided to join our Federation and Klingon Allies in fighting the Maquis. We know that the Maquis could bring a destabilisation to the peace in this sector that all three of our governments have worked so hard to keep over the past five years.” said Admiral Tenek.

“Well, Admiral I can tell you that we are very happy that you decided to join us, perhaps if the Maquis know that all of us are against them they may think twice about attacking us and the Cardassians.” Picard replied.

“I’m glad, I’ve been a keen supporter of the alliance between Romulus, Qo’nos and Earth so that’s why I have good news for us all. A number of our ships who are stationed in Cardassian protectorate space under our control have launched a number of counter offensives against the Maquis. We have retaken back four Cardassian outposts and two colonies.” Reported Tenek.

“So want now. The Maquis are now outnumbered, do we continue with the offensive or we do we try to settle this be having peace talks?” Kira asked.

“At the moment the Maquis are not responding from us trying to speak to them, the cowards prefer to run then fight us.” Worf responded.

“Where are they running two?” asked Tenek.

“A number of Klingon ships have detected the Maquis running back to the Badlands.” Worf returned.

“So the question we should be asking ourselves is what are they doing the Badlands?” Picard stated.

“If they do have Dominion base inside the Badlands they could be preparing for a last offensive.” Kira softly said. “For all we know they could be using their own Jem’hadar to help in the fighting.”

“They could even have thousands of ships then. Even another possibility is that they outnumber us with ships. If they attack there maybe no stopping them.” Tenek stated.

“So its simple now the Maquis are now taking their revenge out on the Dominion because the Dominion killed millions of Maquis. They’ve attacked both the Breen and the Cardassians hard because they allied themselves along with the Dominion, their next target would be the Dominion.” Worf established.

“If they want to attack the Dominion they would have to go through the wormhole, and with the wormhole entranced mined they won’t be able to get through.” Spoke Kira .

“They will come. By now they should know about the mines and they will do whatever it takes to get through the wormhole. We should be begin to prepare for the worse.” Suggested Picard.

“What if they do get through the wormhole and have enough ships to attack the Dominion. What then? We have to warn the Dominion.” Kira said nervously. She knew she was taking a risk mentioning it, especially after what happened after the Dominion War. The Federation, Klingons and Romulans all together lost a number of great ships and people, why would they want to warn the Dominion, for all they know the Maquis maybe doing them all a favour.

“Colonel Kira is correct, we must warn the Dominion, it may even help relations between us all and the Dominion.” Agreed Admiral Tenek.

Kira was shocked she never knew that a Romulan may ever agree with a Bajoran and especially with her. Even after what happened just under six years ago where Kira lead a blockade of outdated Bajoran ships to prevent the Romulans from arming their hospital that they had installed on one of Bajor’s moon.

“I agree with Admiral Tenek and Colonel Kira, the Dominion must be warned.” Worf said.

“Very well then, I’ll get in contact with the Starfleet and the Federation Council while I suggest Admiral Tenek you speak to the Romulan Senate and Worf you speak to the Klingon High Council and try to persuade them to agree on warning the Dominion. While Colonel Kira does the same thing with the Bajoran Government.” Picard stated.

 

Chapter 8

“Drop us out of warp, and bring us to a full stop. Red alert, all hands to battle stations, deploy armour and charge all weapons.” Paris ordered from his captain’s chair.

He could fell the Kennedy dropping out of warp and he heard the shuttering noise of the armour being rolled out around the hull. The lights on the bridge darkened and the red flashing lights along with the siren begin informing the entire crew what was happening.

“Sean, begin full sensors sweeps to determine the location of the transwarp conduit. Michael, hail the Lakota and inform them to hold position where they are, if a fight occurs I don’t want them that near towards the conduit.”

“Aye sir.” Responded Johnson.

“Sir, I have located the co-ordinates to the conduit but there is a lot of interference from the subspace radiation and theta radiation that is leaking from it. I’m uploading the co-ordinates to the helm now.” Stated Lieutenant Summers from the science console.

“Theta Radiation? That’s strange.” Paris said.

“Sir, we are over four hundred thousand kilometres from the conduit.” Reported Lieutenant Darwin.

Then the door from the turbolift opened and Lieutenant Commander Seven of Nine walked on to the bridge and took her place at the Engineering station. Paris nodded to Seven and acknowledged her presence on the bridge. He walked over to where she sat down.

“Seven, can we get a visual?” Paris asked his chief engineer.

“Affirmative. Bringing it on the main screen now.” Seven said.

Everyone on the bridge, whatever they were doing stopped and looked up at the main viewer. The mouth of the conduit was fully opened. The conduit was mainly blue, with hints of green, purple, black and whites.

“Seven, is it Borg in origin?” Paris inquired.

“Sensors sweeps are in-conclusive. It maybe Borg or possibly natural.”

“Fiona, bring us within two thousand kilometres and then full stop.” Paris ordered on the way travelling back to his chair.

The Kennedy moved a bit further towards the conduit and slowly came to a stand still.

“Within two thousand kilometres, sir.”

“Acknowledged, Fiona. Seven, any better with the sensors?” Paris queried.

“No, nothing.”

“Sean, anything on your end?” Paris once again asked.

“No sir, Astrometrics are having the same problem. It’s the theta radiation, it’s interfering and there is no way around.”

“Seven what about if we use a M S ?” Paris inquired.

“It might work, I’ll begin preparing one.”

Commander Michael Johnson looked at his captain with a puzzled face and spoke, “Captain was a M S?”

“Back on the days when me and Seven where on Voyager it’s what Seven and I nicked name a multi-spatial probe. After a two week away mission on the Delta Flyer trying to find it in a class nine nebula.”

“Probe ready Captain.” Seven announced.

“Very well launch the probe.”

The probe was launched at high speeds from the Kennedy’s torpedo launcher. It entered the conduit and was gone from space.

“Captain’s log stardate 59911.2. After our successful attack against the Maquis shipyard within inside Breen Space, Voyager along with a number of ships have been asked to head for Deep Space Nine to help reinforce the Federation Armada. It seems that the Maquis are retreating on all fronts. Early on today I spoke to Captain Picard; he informed that the Romulans have sent a large fleet to assist the combined Federation and Klingon task force stationed in the Bajoran system. Captain Picard now believes that Maquis will attack with all of their ships in the Bajoran system hoping to enter the Wormhole and attack the Dominion. The combined task force at Deep Space Nine hopes to make a stand against the Maquis for the last time and prevent them from getting to the Dominion.”

In her ready room Janeway was fixed on her desktop console’s screen. She had her chin resting on her right hand and in her other hand she had a steamy cup of earl grey tea. She had came to like this tea after her and Picard had shared a number of cups of it together during their diplomatic missions on the Enterprise.

On her screen she was reading all of the reports of the Maquis written by Captain Sisko. She had noticed that Captain Sisko was very detailed when he had written these reports. She had only met him once just before Voyager first ever mission in to the Badlands to find Chokatay’s ship. Sisko had invited her to his quarters the night before for dinner. He was a very talented cook, he had informed her that he learnt everything from his father. Janeway could remember her and Sisko talking about the Gamma Quadrant. His was very keen to get both Voyager and his ship the Defiant to explore the Gamma Quadrant together. She had agreed with him and promised that after her mission to the Badlands she would have suggested it to Starfleet Command but it never came around due to Voyager beening stranded in the Delta Quadrant. Janeway would have hoped that when they had returned home that she would have hoped to take him up on his offer but she was told by Admiral Owen Paris that Sisko was killed in the Bajoran Fire Caves just a few days after the end of the Dominion War. But Picard had told her something else. Picard had informed Janeway all about Sisko’s connection to Bajor and being Bajor’s emissary to the Prophets and that Sisko had visited his wife in a vision and had told his wife that the he was with the Prophets. From the way Picard had told Janeway it had sounded as if Picard believed that Sisko was with the Bajoran Prophets, so she believed it as well.

The door chimed and Chokatay entered carrying a PADD. He walked over to her desk and placed the PADD down next to her cup.

“Ship and Fleet status report, Kathryn.” He quietly said.

Janeway stopped glaring at her console and looked up and Chokatay.

“Thanks.” She responded.

“What you reading?” he asked.

“Reports made by Captain Sisko on the Maquis.” She replied. She gestured with her hand towards Chokatay to sit down on the chair opposite to her desk. He sat down,

“Anything of interest?”

“Captain Sisko was very thorough in his tactical reports on the Maquis. He was a very strong against them and everything that they did. He believed that every single one of them betrayed the Federation and its principles but he could also see why the Maquis did what they did. When the Cardassians joined the Dominion in twenty-three-seventy-four, him along with a number of other Starfleet captains could begin to see that the Cardassians could not be trusted. From his own words in his last ever log entry he says, ‘The Cardassians had sold themselves in a bid to become powerful again, they had betrayed us all in siding with the Dominion. The Maquis were right but I believe if we had joined both the Maquis and the Klingons in their attacks against Cardassia we would not have been able to defeat the Dominion today’.”

Chokatay stared at Janeway, “Did you think the Maquis were right in attacking the Cardassians?”

“I think to an extent yes, the Maquis had a right to defend what was theirs.”

“Perhaps if myself and B’Elanna had not joined the Maquis. Me and you would never have met.” Chokatay stated.

“Well that’s in the past now. We are in the present and I’ve got to find a way in to getting in to the Maquis’ thoughts now.” Janeway said.

“If you want my advice, you are look at the wrong reports made by Captain Sisko.” Chokatay spoke.

“What do you mean?” she inquired.

“These Maquis are not doing what the original Maquis did. When the original Maquis fought, they attacked in small groups. Targeted smaller things. This Maquis are acting more like the Dominion, attacking in larger groups and they don’t seem worried about losing ships. Perhaps you should see what Captain Sisko says about the Dominion.”

“What a good idea Chokatay, thanks a lot. Dismissed.” Janeway ordered and she went back to her work and he left the room.

“Bring us about bearing one-two-five mark three-four-six. Sam, fire phasers.” Bashir commanded.

The Defiant turned around and fired its forward phaser cannons at the Maquis fighter. This fighter was no Maquis fighter it was a stolen Dominion fighter. The phaser hits against the fighter from the Defiant was powerful enough to destroy the small fighter.

“Ezri, bring us around to target the next the fighter,” Spoke Bashir. He was standing to Dax’s right and was given orders to her and Lieutenant Commander Bowers, co-ordinating the fight. “Sam can you get weapons lock?”

“No sir. Damn it, they’ve gone to warp.” Responded Bowers.

“Shall I go after them?” Dax asked.

“No, let them go. Shar where are they heading?” inquired Bashir.

“If they maintain their course, they will reach the Badlands within thirty minutes.” Was the answer from the Andorian Lieutenant.

Bashir walked back to his command chair and sat down. “Stand down red alert. Ezri, resume our course to rendezvous with the Federation fleet at Cardassia Prime, Warp seven. Nog, do we take any damage?”

“No sir, the modification that myself and Lieutenant Shar performed on the armour generator worked. We took no damage to the main deflector or any other system.” Nog reported.

“Good.” Bashir said. He turned his command chair so he was facing Taran’atar at the aft station. “Taran’atar, did you get a good look at those bio-signs?”

“I did. I carried out a number of intensive scans on both ships and I have confirmed Colonel Kira’s suspicions. The Maquis are using Jem’Hadar.” Taran’atar replied.

Bashir turned his seat back round to its normal position. “Shar, send an encrypted message to Deep Space Nine, informing Colonel Kira that she was right about the Maquis using Jem’Hadar soldiers.”

“Aye sir.” Shar gently spoke.

“Seven, can you determine where that Theta radiation is coming from using the M S probe?” Paris asked.

“At the moment there is still a lot of interference jamming the communications on the probe. Communications effectiveness is down to twenty-three percent. It’s the same with the sensors on the probe.” Seven replied.

On the viewscreen of the bridge of the Kennedy was the transwarp conduit. The probe could not get a proper visual for the bridge crew to see. They were forced to send in the probe in blind.

“Shall we prepare another probe for launch?” Johnson inquired towards his captain.

Paris was standing in the centre of the bridge with his arms crossed. He was very frustrated from what was happening. It only been around forty minutes and the probe was being restricted from barely seeing anything and its engine was damaged by the Theta radiation and subspace radiation. Paris could understand if there was subspace radiation pouring from the conduit. The conduit it self was unstable as Seven had reported but Theta radiation. Theta radiation only came as a waste product of antimatter. Surely this can not be natural.

“No, don’t bother Michael.” Paris responded. He turned and looked straight at his tactical officer. “Alex, how many quantum torpedoes would we need to use to collapse that conduit?”

Alex returned with the reply of, “At least eight, but they would be have to modify so that their warhead won’t be damaged by the subspace radiation. That would take me at least thirty minutes to do.”

Paris began to nod. “Do it, Alex. Seven, bring back the probe use either the transporters of tractor beam to get it back here quicker.” Paris ordered. He sat back in chair and watched his officer’s get to work.

“I’m enhancing the targeting scanners with the main deflector. I have a target energising.” Seven reported. “It's back in the launcher bay.”

“Good. Michael, inform the Lakota...” Paris did not get chance to finish his sentence when Lieutenant Summers shouted out something Paris did not want to hear.

“Captain, sensors are picking up two vessels coming through the conduit. I am unable to determine what they are but they are nearly the same size as an Ambassador class starship each.”

“Battle stations, people. Alex, where are you coming on with those torpedoes?” Paris inquired.

“I have not had time to even modify one torpedo.” Carson answered.

“Well, load up a full spread of torpedoes let's hope at least a few can destroy the conduit. Target the conduit’s terminus. Prepare to fire on my command.” Paris commanded.

“Ten torpedoes are armed and loaded and an extra ten are armed. Target locked sir.” Carson announced.

“Sir, we have visual of the two ships, they are not Borg.” Declared Summers.

“Hold your fire, Alex. On screen, maximum magnification.” Paris ordered.

The viewscreen changed and on there were two large black vessels. Both of the same configuration.

“I don’t recognise it. Anyone?” Paris asked.

There was a silence on the bridge. No one answered. Except for something. On Lieutenant Carson’s console a button began to bleep from loudly. Everyone turned and looked at him.

“What is it, Alex?” Paris requested.

“The port ship is hailing us, they are asking to speak to the captain of this vessel. They seem to know that we are Federation.” Carson responded.

“Open a channel.” Paris said and waited until Carson nodded informing him that the channel was open. “This is Captain Tom Paris in command of the starship USS Kennedy representing the Untied Federation of Planets. Please could you identify yourself.”

“We are getting a response audio only.” Carson stated.

“Sir, sensors indicate that these vessel have both just roughly two-hundred and fifty life signs on aboard. Also the molecular bonds in their hull have been severely weakened. Looks a long exposure to Theta radiation. Their engines have also taken damage.” Seven announced.

“Thanks Seven. Alex lets hear what they have to say.” Paris said.

The speakers on the bridge crackled a bit and then began to produce the sound of a voice Paris and Seven had not heard in over three years.

“Tom is that you? It’s Neelix. I am on board one of these ships. Can you give a tow? Our engines have been severely damaged from all the different radiation.”

“Neelix it is Tom. Standby we are preparing to get you out of there.” Paris looked over to Seven. “Seven extend our shields around both ships and prepare the tractor beams to tow both vessels. Fiona the moment tractor beams are locked on get us out of here full impulse. Alex prepare those torpedoes in the aft launchers. Fiona the moment the last torpedo has been fired go to warp one. Michael hail the Lakota and tell them to get out of here.”

All of his officers began to carry out of his orders.

“Tractor beams established. Shields extended.” Came a response from Seven.

“Going to full impulse.” Darwin reported.

“Torpedoes firing.” Carson announced.

“The conduit is begging to collapse.” Stated Summers.

“The last torpedo has been launched.” said Carson.

“Going to Warp one.” Darwin informed.

The Kennedy along with the two other starships in tow went to warp. The conduit was destroyed behind them. The Kennedy altered course back to Starbase 121. Back on the bridge of the Kennedy Captain Paris ordered his first officer to go and escort Neelix from the transporter room to the briefing room after Paris invite Neelix on board the Kennedy.

Within the briefing room Captain Paris and Lieutenant Commander Seven of Nine both sat. Paris thought it was wised to have Seven here especially as Neelix and Seven knew each other as well. The room was well lit. On one of the walls was a large painting of the Kennedy in space just coming out of a blue and green coloured nebula. The table it self was a standard table that was typical seen on all Sovereign class starships and around the table was a number of chairs were Paris’ staff could sit around and have meetings.

Paris was seated at one end of the table and Seven was sitting to his left.

The door hissed open and Neelix walked in. Neelix had not changed one bit Paris thought and still he was wearing his different collection of colourful clothes. Neelix walked over to Paris and Seven. Both Paris and Seven stood up.

“Tom it's good to see you.” Neelix began. Both men extended their arms round each other and gave each other a hug. It had been a long time since they both had seen each other.

“You too, Neelix.”

Neelix turned to look at Seven. At first he did not recognise her, but then he did.

“Seven, is that you? What happened to your implants?” Neelix asked.

“It is me Neelix. I had my implants removed a few years ago.”

After Neelix and Seven hugged each other all three friends sat down.

“It is good to see you both.” Neelix stated.

“Likewise Neelix, but we are surprised to see you here. Last time we heard from you, you were the Federation Ambassador to the Delta Quadrant and was living on that Asteroid.” Paris spoke.

“Well, I was but we was forced to leave. The miners found ways to get past our defences. Many Talaxians were killed. We were able to get our hands on those two ships and we evacuated off the asteroid. For some time we tried finding a suitable place to settle down but anything we came along was either taken or unsuitable. So I suggested we resumed what the course that Voyager would of used to get home, so we set a course towards the Alpha Quadrant. We were looking just under a thirty year trip. I had hoped that something might come on a way. But nothing did. Then two weeks ago we detected that conduit and we altered course towards it to investigate. We found a Malon freighter dumping high amounts of Theta radiation into the conduit making it unstable. So we got in a fire fight with them and we disabled the freighter. We then found out that the conduit would take quite a bit off the journey towards the Alpha Quadrant but we never knew that it would get us in to Federation space. So we entered the conduit but halfway through our engines took damage from the Theta Radiation. Our shields barely held but when we saw the probe we continued and hoped that help would be on the other side.”

“Why the Alpha quadrant, Neelix?” Paris queried.

“We were hoping that we could ask the Federation for help in case we could not find a planet of our own.”

“Well I am sure, we can give you hand Neelix. We can tow your vessels back to Starbase 121 and they can give you a hand in repairing your ships.” Paris said.

“Can you not help out, Tom?”

“Not really at the moment there is a problem that could bring the Federation into another war. As the Kennedy is the one of the most advanced starships in the fleet we are needed on the frontlines. I’m sorry Neelix. But I promise you that I will get back here and help you out, Neelix.”

“Very well. But would it be a problem if you could give us a hand with our most injured we could really used it.”

“Of course, Neelix.” Paris tapped his combadge. “Paris to Doctor Louis.”

“Good ahead Tom.” Replied the female voice from sickbay. Doctor Susan Louis was the Kennedy’s Chief Medical officer and was best friends with Paris’ wife. Susan had knownw B’Elanna back at Starfleet academy, it was in fact B’Elanna’s idea for Tom to pick Susan as his chief medical officer. It was very rare that any of his crew could call him by his first name. Only Susan, Michael and Seven called him by his first name.

“Susan, prepare sickbay. You are about to receive some injured Talaxians, a few maybe critical. You may have to use the AMH as it has information on Talaxian physiology.”

“Ok, thanks Tom. Louis out.”

“Neelix, we will begin to beam over your injured as soon as possible.” Paris stated.

“Thank you Tom, I hope you don’t think I am being rude but it maybe a good idea that I return to my ship to assure the other Talaxians that we are safe.”

“Very well. Neelix as we are at low warp we should arrive at the Starbase in around six hours time. Would you like to join myself and my senior crew for Seven’s weekly dinner at nineteen-hundred hours? You could bring Dexa and a few other of your Talaxian friends if you wish?” Paris asked.

“That will be nice. I’ll be there.” Neelix said. “I’ll see you there. Its good to see you both again.”

Neelix walked out of the room and was escorted back to the transporter room by Commander Johnson.

Janeway could still not believe the message she had received from Paris eight hours ago. Neelix, the man who had become Voyager’s cook, moral officer, trade negotiator and Ambassador for seven full years had crossed the finishing line towards the Alpha Quadrant. After being forced out from the home he had settled down on along with over five hundred Talaxians and had became the Federation Ambassador to the Delta Quadrant. He had decided to continue the trip that Voyager would have taken if they had not taken the shortcut home in the network of Borg transwarp conduits.

Already Janeway had informed Chokatay and sent messages to many of the old crew of Voyager telling of their old friend turning up on their doorstep as she put it in the messages. Continuing from what Paris had told her he had invited Neelix and few other senior Talaxians to dinner and it was a success. They had reached Starbase 121 and the station’s commander suggested that the Talaxians settle down on the nearby class-M planet in the Minerak system. Paris had contacted the Federation Council and they were sending an Ambassador of their own to allow the Talaxians to settle down at the Minerak system. Janeway along with Paris had sent messages to the Federation Council both supporting the Talaxians to become members of the Federation. Janeway had heard from Captain Harry Kim who also sent his support for the Talaxians petition to join the Federation. Paris had also told her that his own father, Fleet Admiral Owen Paris and along with him a number of others including Fleet Admirals Hayes and Nechayev all agreed to give their support for the Talaxians as well. Janeway had hoped that she could get Captain Picard to help out by putting in a good word too. Hopefully that would be enough for them Council to agree on letting the Talaxians become Federation members.

She thought to herself once the Maquis situation was over she would like to go and visit Neelix and see how he is. But at the present moment she was trying to focus on what was at hand. In under two days Voyager along with a few other Federation starships would rendezvous with the joint Federation-Klingon-Romulan battle group stationed at Deep Space Nine to fight the Maquis, to prevent the Maquis from entering the Gamma Quadrant and launching an all out invasion against the Dominion.

Time to get some coffee

she thought to herself and so she did.

 

Chapter 9

“Enter.” Picard spoke.

The doors to his ready room slid opened and Commander Riker strolled in and placed a PADD down on Picard’s desk. Picard looked up from his console towards his first officer and picked up the PADD.

“Ship status report, sir.” Riker reported.

“Thankyou number one.” Picard muttered.

“You ok sir?” Riker asked.

“Yes, I’m fine. Thanks Will.” Picard quietly replied.

Riker sat down in the opposite chair to Picard’s desk and looked straight at his Captain.

“Well, I know something is wrong then.”

“Will, I’m perfectly fine.”

“No, you are not. I may not be Deanna but I know when something is wrong with you. I’ve known you too long. I would not be a good first officer if I didn’t know when the captain has a problem.”

Picard sighed. He knew Will was right but he also knew Will would not leave until he told him what was wrong or either he would get Deanna or Beverly on to him.

“Will, when was the last time the Enterprise went on a scientific mission?”

“If memory serves me right, about nine months ago when we spent six weeks on that archaeological dig at the Ba’ku planet.”

Riker was right, that was their last scientific mission. Even Picard could remember everything about it. The Ba’ku people had found remains of an ancient species in some mountains caves and had ask Picard and the Enterprise crew to lead a proper archaeological survey mission in to the caves. In fact it was the same mountain caves that Picard and few of his senior crew and the entire Ba’ku race hide when the Son’a had tried to capture the planet. Picard had enjoyed the survey mission. He and Anij had spent some time together while he was there.

“You're right, Will. Nine months ago. Since then any mission we have taken is either a diplomatic mission or a tactical mission. When are we going to return to the stars properly as explorers and scientists? I long for the days when we were back on the old Enterprise. We were constantly meeting new species, new phenomena and reaching new frontiers. Now the flagship of the fleet is no longer an explorer. I’m sure James T. Kirk would be rolling over in his grave knowing a ship name Enterprise is no longer a explorer but a warship.”

“I suppose, once everything here is finished, we could ask Starfleet for more scientific missions. Anyway before all of this Maquis situation had happened weren’t we not going on a mission with Voyager to explore the unmapped Stygia sector just outside the Federation-Romulan border?”

“I suppose you are right, number one. Thank you, Will.”

“That’s ok Captain. I’ll be on the bridge if you need me.” Riker stood up and walked at of the ready room.

It had been four days since the meeting in the wardroom between Kira, Picard, Worf and Tenek discussing the Maquis’ possible attack against the station and even Bajor. Kira’s fears on the Maquis using modified Jem'Hadar soldiers had been confirmed by Bashir. Along with that Admiral Tenek had reported that the Romulan Tal Shiar, the Romulan Star Empire’s secret police had been able to verify that the Maquis did on intend on entering the wormhole within what would be now twenty threes hours. Deep Space Nine’s long range sensors had picked up the massive Maquis fleet of over fifteen hundred thousand vessels.

Kira was walking down one of Deep Space Nine’s many corridors towards the wardroom for the last ever meeting between her, Picard, Wolf, Tenek and a number of other captains. Federation reinforcements had already arrived with the USS Voyager. Along with that the USS Kennedy had arrived from their short mission into the Minerak system. Kira had just finished off speaking with Bashir who had informed her that the Defiant was successful and the Maquis had pulled out from attacking the Cardassins. The Defiant was on its way back home after Picard had requested its presence back at DS9. The Defiant was also bringing three other starships with them. The USS Centaur-A, a Saber class starship under the command of Captain Charles Reynolds. The USS London, an Excelsior class starship under the command of Captain Nick Hamper and then there was the USS Centanna, an Olympic-class vessel. From what Bashir had informed Kira the Centanna was outfitted with a number of weapons seeming it was a support cruiser and support cruisers are mainly used to carry cargo and rescue starships in distress within Federation space.

She entered the wardroom and only Picard and another Starfleet female captain was sitting down drinking from what Kira could see was Picard’s favourite drink, Earl Grey tea.

Picard stood up and gently pulled on his uniform jacket.

“Ah, Colonel Kira I would like to meet Captain Kathryn Janeway commander of the starship Voyager.”

Janeway got up from her chair and gestured towards Kira with a hand shack. Kira returned the gesture by extending her hand and shacking the captain’s hands.

“A pleasure to meet you, Colonel. Jean-Luc has told me all about you it’s a delight to meet you.” Janeway spoke.

“Likewise, Captain Janeway. I have read many of your reports during your travels through the Delta Quadrant. It is an honour to meet you at long last.” Kira stated.

“Please call me Kathryn.”

“As long as you agree to call me Nerys.”

“Very well then.” Janeway responded with a smile.

Picard signalled for the three of them to sit down. Picard sat at the end of the table and Janeway took a seat next to his right and Kira had taken the seat towards Picard’s left.

“Myself and Kathryn were discussing a few plans and strategies we could use against the Maquis’ fleet.” Picard informed Kira.

Kira had noticed the many PADDs scattered along the long table.

“When me and Jean-Luc were dealing with the Tzenkethi we had spent many late nights in the Enterprise’s briefing room bouncing ideas off from each other for either diplomatic ideas or tactical methods.”

“Well, I can see why Starfleet regularly team you two up. Your are two of the best Starfleet captains in the fleet.” Kira said.

“Well, thank you, Colonel. But we can’t forget that they are many other Starfleet Captains who either great tacticians, diplomats or scientists.” Picard replied.

What Picard had just reminded Kira of Sisko. Her last commander who...

“Nerys.” Spoke a low voice. Kira was, where was she? She didn’t know where she was.

“Nerys.” Once again she heard the low voice calling her name. She thought she knew who it was,

“Ben?” Rarely did she ever call Captain Sisko by his first name only when both of them were in a private conservation. Kira turned around and in front of her stood her last captain and the emissary of the Prophets. Still in same the way she remembered him in his Starfleet uniform.

“It’s me ,Nerys.” He confirmed.

“Where am I?” She asked him.

“You do not need to worry about that. I wanted to tell you that I was going to returning soon, but I must wait a bit longer. The Prophets have made me stay further, in return they will protect Bajor from the Maquis. I won’t have Bajor or Deep Space Nine or even the Alpha Quadrant overriding by the Maquis. Once the first Maquis vessel touches the wormhole the Maquis will be gone. After that take down the minefield. Then everything will be fine.”

Kira nodded. Still she could not believe what she was seeing. She was thinking to herself that she must be in the Celestial Temple.

“When will you return?” she asked.

“Soon, Nerys. Soon. Tell Kasidy I love her for me. I have to go now.”

“Wait, I need to tell you about Jake.”

“Don’t worry Nerys. Jake is with me now. He is here.” Sisko announced. “Also tell Julian from me that he better look after the Defiant.”

Kira smiled. It was really him, she thought.

“And one more last thing. Nerys, don’t give up. Bajor will need you for its future. I need you to be strong for me and for Bajor. Goodbye Nerys.”

“Colonel you ok?” Picard was asking. “Colonel?”

Kira shook her head and tilted it backwards.

“Ben.” She said quietly.

Both Picard and Janeway looked at each with puzzled faces.

“Do you mean Captain Sisko?” Janeway inquired.

Kira looked back down at the table and then up to Picard and Janeway. Still she could not believe it. She had a vision and Sisko had spoken to her.

“Captain Sisko came to me in a vision. He told me that the Prophets were going to prevent the Maquis from entering the Celestial Temple.”

“The wormhole?” Picard queried.

Kira nodded in agreement.

“When are the Prophets going to stop the Maquis?” Janeway questioned.

“The moment the first Maquis vessel enters the wormhole.” Kira responded. “If you two would excuse me, I need to go and take a walk.”

Kira got up and walked out of the wardroom. She got into the nearest turbolift she could find and headed straight for the upper level of the promenade.

The moment the turbolift stopped and the doors opened Kira went straight to the windows where she would be able to get a good look at where the wormhole would be.

There she stood for the next ten hours staring out towards where the mouth of the wormhole would usually open.

Following the final meeting of a number of Starfleet, Klingon and Romulan captains discussing the upcoming battle against the Maquis, Kathryn Janeway had decided to find Colonel Kira. Both Janeway and Picard had agreed not to tell anyone about what had happened to Kira in wardroom before the meeting.

Janeway had found Kira gazing out of a window on the upper level of Deep Space Nine’s promenade. There was barely anyone on the promenade except for the many Starfleet and Bajoran Security force preparing to fight the Maquis. Janeway knew all of the civilian population of the station had been evacuated to Bajor.

“Are you ok?” Janeway asked Kira.

Kira turned around and looked at the captain. She smiled and replied with,

“Yes thank you. I’m sorry I did not attend the meeting.”

“That’s ok. Both myself and Jean-Luc did not mind.”

Janeway was not too sure what to do. She walked over to stand by Kira’s side and looked out towards the dark black void which was space.

“I take it that’s where the Celestial Temple is?” Janeway inquired.

“Yes it is.” Kira answered. “Do you believe in the Prophets, Captain?”

“My first officer once said to me that not everything can be scanned by a tricorder. Science maybe my first love but through the many experiences I have gained in the past ten years I can see that he may be right.” Janeway stopped and took a breath. She continued. “I’ve read a number of Captain Sisko’s reports. From the first moment he encountered the Prophets to when he got them to remove that large Dominion fleet inside the wormhole from entering the Alpha Quadrant and crushing the Federation and the entire Alpha Quadrant. So if what Captain Sisko said to you were true then maybe we will prevail by the end of this day.” Janeway smiled and tapped her combadge. “Janeway to Voyager standby to beam me on board.”

“Acknowledged Captain.” Came a soft female voice.

“Well, I better be going back to Voyager.”

Kira turned towards Janeway and smiled. “Thank you, Captain.”

“Energise.” Janeway ordered and she disappeared with a transporter beam.

Kira took one more glance out of the window and headed towards the turbolift to get to Ops. She knew that her old captain was looking over her. This made her feel happy and confident in what was about to happen.

 

Chapter 10

Counselor Troi could feel the mix emotions coming from the entire crew of the Enterprise. From worry to bravery to scariness to confidence. She was trying to block out every single emotion she could feel. Twenty minutes and the Maquis fleet would be within weapons range. She could feel the anxiety coming from Captain Picard who was sitting on her right. She could feel him preparing himself on the task at hand. She knew this would be very tough on him but she, like a number of the Enterprise crew and many of the captains in the joint task force, had confidence in him. Picard looked over at her and she returned with a smile, hoping it would settle his nerves. He took in a big breath from his nose and breathed out from his mouth. This is it, she heard him say to himself. He looked over at Riker and ordered him to open a channel to the fleet. So Riker did and Picard began his announcement.

“This is Captain Picard on the Enterprise to all ships. The moment we have been waiting for is about to meet us. We will be engaging the Maquis fleet. As you all know, the Maquis are mainly using joint Dominion, Cardassian and out-dated Federation vessels against us. Preliminary scans indicate that a number have taken damage. You all know the plan. Federation vessels will concentrate against the larger vessels and take the front positions due to our Armour Generator capability. Romulan and Klingon vessels take up the rear and don’t allow for any of the ships to get past our lines. Deep Space Nine will target the smaller fighter and destroyers and any vessel that gets past the minefield. Good Luck to us all. Enterprise out.”

Picard looked over to Riker and asked, “How did I do?”

“Very well done, sir.”

“Thank you, Number One. You know what to do now.”

“Aye sir. Red alert...”

“... All hands to battle stations.” Janeway ordered from her command chair. The bridge went dark and Janeway could hear the siren going off. She could feel her heart pounding with apprehension. She looked over to Chokatay who was sitting next to her.

“Chokatay, inform Commander Barclay to deploy the armour.”

“Aye captain...”

“... armour successfully deployed.” Reported Seven from her engineering station.

“Good.” Paris stated. He could feel the hairs on the back of his neck sticking up. He took in a breath and looked over to his tactical officer, “Alex, bring the weapons...”

“...arrays online. Arm all Quantum torpedoes and charge the phaser banks.” Kira ordered from the operations table within OPS. She closed her eyes and quietly prayed to the Prophets hoping that they will hear her and that they will protect Bajor. She opened her eyes and continued to give out her orders, “Lieutenant...”

“... Shar, begin to find out which damaged Maquis vessel is nearest to us and upload the co-ordinates to the helm and tactical.” Bashir nervously dictated. He knew why he was so nervous. He had never commanded a starship when it was participating in such a large task force. Be relaxed, Julian, he said to himself.

“Aye sir.” Replied Shar.

“Captain, all hands...”

“...report ready sir.” Announced Commander Jessie Davison from Vaughn’s right. In all his years in Starfleet, the many battles his had witnessed never had Elias Vaughn ever felt so tensed then today. He knew that is was may be the burden of commanding the Marco Polo but he knew it was something else. Snap out of it, Elias, he heard himself saying.

“Commander...”

“... the Cher’toth and Ker’plak need to be protecting our rear flank.” Worf stated at the Klingon commander who was sitting at the communications console on the Negh’var class warship IKS Koloth. Worf was preparing for battle. He had been in many battles and was prepared as always to die in battle. Was it going to be today, he asked himself. Will he be meeting his father and Jadzia in Sto-Vo-kor or will fate protect him again. The commander from communications began to reply from Worf’s orders,

“Aye sir, I will...”

“...inform Commander Tr’en and Commander Al’kirn to move from their current position and take up a new defensive position to our sides.” Reported the Centurion from Admiral Tenek’s left. The weight of beening in charge of such a large fleet had fell on Tenek very hard. She had only in the past commanded a few starships at a time but never a Romulan fleet this large. I can do it successfully she said to herself.

“Admiral, the Maquis fleet...”

“...is altering course and heading straight for the wormhole, they seem to be opening fire on the mines.” Lieutenant Carson announced from the tactical station on the Kennedy’s bridge.

Paris could not believe it. Then his first officer began to speak

“Tom, Captain Picard is ordering us to open...”

“...Fire!” Kira ordered. Deep Space Nine released all of its weapon’s against the Maquis fleet. Torpedoes striking against the enemy’s shields and hulls and either being destroyed by DS9’s weapons or by the detonation of the mines.

On the main viewscreen Kira could see the task force beginning to join in on firing on the Maquis fleet. First the Enterprise followed by the Defiant, Marco Polo, Voyager and the Kennedy. Different shades of green and red accompanied the Federation fire from the Romulan and Klingon vessels. All in one go many Maquis vessels were beginning to take the punishment from the task force. Every single Federation, Klingon and Romulan vessel was firing its weapons at the Maquis.

“Captain, one of the ships has got passed the minefield. The wormhole is opening.” Chokatay reported.

“Onscreen.” Janeway commanded.

The main screen changed to show that the wormhole was opening and a small Cardassian vessel had approached the wormhole entrance. Then it was gone with a powerful white beam coming from the wormhole.

“What the hell is that?” Janeway asked.

“Amazing! Captain, all of the Maquis ships are being eradicated by this powerful energy beam coming from the wormhole.” Shar stated from his science station on the bridge of the Defiant.

The entire bridge crew of the Defiant were amazed from what they could see. Bashir could hear a number of his officers talking about it. He even heard one of them saying something about Captain Sisko and the Prophets.

Then the bright white light was gone. Picard blinked a couple of times. The complete Maquis fleet was gone. Nothing was left. Just gone.

“Number one, open a channel to Deep Space Nine.”

“Aye Captain. Channel open.” Riker returned.

The viewscreen changed to Colonel Kira’s face.

“He said it was going to happen and it did.” Kira stated.

“Indeed it did.” Picard said.

“Captain’s log stardate 60001. It has been twenty-six hours since the Maquis fleet had been eradicated and the crisis that they brought ended. Already we have received reports from the Cardassians informing us that one of their ships detected a large explosion within the Bajoran Badlands. They have investigated it and have found what was the Maquis central base of operations destroyed. Things are now starting to return to normal. Both the Klingon and Romulan fleets are returning towards their homes. Our ships have already been giving new assignments or have returned to the previous assignments that they were on before the Maquis crisis.

The USS Kennedy has already returned to what used to be called the Minerak system but has been renamed to New Talax by a species which was encountered by Voyager during their days in the Delta Quadrant. Already the Talaxians have applied for Federation membership and it seems that many Starfleet Admirals and Captains including myself support their petition to join the Federation.

The minefield in the Bajoran system has been taken down and already the USS Defiant has entered the Gamma Quadrant and reported that the is no sign of Rogue Dominion or Maquis ships. After deploying the communications array back in the Gamma Quadrant DS9 has already received a message from Odo, the Dominion’s leader. Odo has informed us that the rogue Jem’hadar have been dealt with. The Gamma Quadrant is now safe for us to continue exploring.

Other good news is that Bajor’s membership into the Federation has been accepted and Bajor is now a Federation member.

After Bajor’s entering the Federation, Admiral Ross arrived at Deep Space Nine and has official given full command of the Federation Space station Deep Space Nine to the now newly promoted Commodore Kira Nerys. Even though the rank is now rarely used, Starfleet believe it is appropriate for Kira. She now has full authority and control of all Starfleet forces within the Bajoran system and Deep Space Nine.

In the meanwhile both the Enterprise and Voyager are heading for the Stygia sector to begin our two months of mapping the sector out. I look forward to some time where I can relax. As it will take us some time to reach the Stygia Sector I have given the crew orders to take some R and R. I believe we all need it. ”

Within Picard’s personal quarters on the Enterprise both Picard and Janeway sat sipping glasses of wine. After Picard had cooked dinner for them both they were resting on his couch talking about the recent events. Both Captains were in their civilian clothes. Janeway was wearing a long sandy coloured dress. Picard was wearing a white shirt and beige trousers.

“Well it may have been short and simple but for a second I felt as if we could of lost the battle and the Maquis would of won.” Janeway said quietly.

“The Federation has faced nearly every bad guy fate has thrown at us. The Klingons, the Romulans, the Cardassians, the Breen, the Borg and the Dominion. Hell, we have even had to deal with Q! But the Federation prevailed in every incident. We may not be perfect but I am sure that the Federation will be around for a few more centuries to come. Our ideology will never change.” Picard stated raising his glass.

“To exploration and the weird compelling force that makes us curious of the universe we live in.” Janeway spoke. Tapping her glass wine of against Picard’s glass both of them smiled at each other and looked forward to their next adventure together.

 

- The End -

 

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Last modified: 25 Dec 2015 
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