ST Horizons: The Zardanian Incident

Dragon
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ST Horizons: The Zardanian Incident

Postby Dragon » Sat Sep 18, 2004 4:46 pm

My first fanfiction involving Star Trek. Had this up on Fanfiction.net but thought I'd post it here as well. Pretty non-technical, but fun to write.

Star Trek: Horizons

The Zardanian Incident

Chapter One


“Sir, the USS Spector is signalling that they are ready for transport.”

“Thank you Ensign. And thanks for the ride. I know it was a little out of your way.”

“No problem, sir. It was actually an honour to meet you.”

Alexander Dent gave a pained smile as he rose from his seat, heading for the transport pad located in the back of the Runabout’s cockpit. The Ensign took the opportunity to lean forward in his seat and gaze out the window, staring out at the three starships looming above them. He breathed a quite sigh of awe.

“Viewscreens don’t do them justice, do they Ensign?”

“No sir, Commander. Not one bit. And sir...it really was an-”

Dent tapped his comm badge, cutting the Ensign off, “Ready for transport, Spector.”

The Ensign’s face dissolved into a blue field of light, replaced with the pristine transporter room of the USS Spector. A Vulcan officer stepped forward and nodded to the Commander. The ship gave a little sway under their feet as the warp engines were engaged.

“Commander Dent, welcome aboard. I am Lieutenant Commander Venax, acting tactical officer.”

Dent smiled as he stepped off the pad. “Hello, Lieutenant Commander. I’m your acting First Officer for the next little while.”

“Indeed,” the Vulcan said dryly, “if you would follow me the Captain is waiting for you in his ready room. He will debrief you there.”

Dent followed the Vulcan into the corridor, nodding to the transporter chief as they left.

“I’ve not met many Vulcan tactical officers in Starfleet, Venax.”

“Our previous tactical officer was promoted to the USS Grissom. They have not selected a replacement as of yet.”

“What were you in previous to this? You look very familiar,” Dent knew he had seen the woman before but could not place her. She did not have the standard appearance of most Vulcans he knew, the identical haircut their most prominent feature besides the ears. Venax’s appearance was less severe, her hair tied back as per regulations but obviously quite long. She was quite tall and obviously fit, but her stride was not as mechanical as was the norm for her race.

“I was in Security, then recently promoted to Gunnery officer. You may remember me from the Academy. I was a year behind you.”

Dent snapped his fingers as they waited for a turbolift, “That’s it! I sparred with you once or twice didn’t I, during training?”

“Correct.”

“Yes. I remember now. My classmates would say, ‘What are you doing, sparring with a Vulcan?’ but I needed the experience. Had to have some martial arts guidance with someone obviously superior, you know? Stronger and faster...all of that.”

“Vulcans are indeed stronger than humans,” Venax replied as she entered the lift, indicating the Bridge for the destination, “you handled yourself well as I recall.”

“Not many Vulcans would train with humans, unfortunately. A shame. The restraint showed by your race is remarkable when sparring. You can learn quite a lot. I certainly did anyway. I did not recognize you at first and I apologize for that. Your hair was shorter than.”

“It is still regulation.”

“I imagine it would be,” Dent said laughing a little as the doors hissed open.

“I should warn you, Commander. The Captain does not like...talkers.”

“Excuse me?”

“Captain Patterson runs what you would call a ‘tight ship’ and he does not tolerate excessive conversation not relating to your duties.”

“Duly noted, Lieutenant Commander. I tend to ramble when I am nervous.”

“Understood. I simply thought a warning would be helpful.”

“Thanks.”

Dent walked onto the Bridge and let the sounds wash over him. On the viewscreen the USS Gorkon could be seen, along with another Akira escorting the Excelsior class ship to the Zardanian Frontier. The Bridge officers turned as one and looked over the Commander, some with a barely concealed awe and others with narrowed eyes.

Oh no, Dent thought. At least the Captain sent the Vulcan to escort me.

“The ready room is just off to the side Commander. Your station is directly behind the Captain’s chair.”

“Thanks again, Venax. Hello everyone,” Dent said, raising his voice, “I am Commander Alexander Dent. I’ll be the First Officer for the rest of this mission. I hope to met with all of you personally when time permits.”

The Officers nodded as one and resumed their work. Dent had been given a brief overview of the crew and knew the majority had been working together for quite some time, operating effectively as a team. Perhaps too effectively, Starfleet felt. Such long-term staff had a tendency to become complacent and slightly careless even under the best Captain. Their previous First Officer had been given command of his own ship, and Dent was the only ranking officer without a ship that could be moved in quickly. Rather than promote within their own ranks, Starfleet sent Dent out as quickly as they could to shake things up a bit. It was well known that Captain Patterson was against the outside promotion.

Dent walked over to the Ready Room door and thumbed the comm panel, then stood there for a full minute, feeling foolish. Letting everyone know who is in charge, Captain? Couldn’t find a better way to do it then making me stand here like an idiot? Finally the doors whisked open and Dent entered.

The room was decorated with a variety of ancient swords and muskets, pictures displaying scenes from old wars of Earth’s history. Dent even recognized some of them, not being much of a history scholar. It was pretty much every other Ready Room he had been in that belonged to these Heavy Cruiser class Captains. It took a certain type of character to command such heavily armed starships.

Dragon
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Postby Dragon » Sat Sep 18, 2004 4:47 pm

“Commander Dent, welcome. Come in and sit down.”

“Thank you, Captain.”

“Care for some coffee?”

“Yes, please.”

“The replicator is right over there. I prefer blend 16, my own personal creation, with extra sugar and cream,” the Captain took a sip from his cup and sighed, “and call me John while we are off the Bridge.”

Dent walked over to the replicator and said “Coffee, black.” Patterson looked at him sharply and then went back to reading a data pad. Dent knew he was being measured in this room but had little energy for games such as this.

“They told me you were your own man,” Patterson said, not looking at the Commander.

“Who is ‘they’, sir?”

Patterson looked up, thrown off by the question, “Can’t fault a man for wanting to know about his next First Officer can you, Alex?”

“Not at all, John.”

“You’ve had quite the record so far.”

Here we go, Dent thought.

Patterson lifted the data pad and made a show of reading it, as though it were the first time, “Let’s see here. You are on track to become one of the youngest Captains in Starfleet history. I was a quite a bit older than you when I was made Commander and here you already a few years into it.”

“Yes, sir.”

“I heard it said they call you...what was it again?”

“The ‘Winston Churchill’ of Starfleet, I believe.”

“Can’t say I understand fully what that expression means, Alex.”

I bet, Dent thought. “It means that any other time I would probably have been drummed out of Starfleet or just served my time as a Lieutenant at most. Certain situations in the past have provided otherwise. I believe I was simply the right person at the right time. At least that’s what my last Captain said.”

“Before your ship was destroyed.”

“Correct.”

“That happens a lot?”

“Somewhat.”

“You’re seen as somewhat eccentric? Not really that personable or sociable?”

Dent simply shrugged. “Would you like me to get the Ship’s Councillor in here, John?”

“Careful, Commander. I don’t take kindly to a flippant attitude.”

“My apologies, Captain.”

“Now let’s look at your record. It’s quite a fascinating read. In just the last little while you were in the battle of Wolf 359 and were forced to take command from Engineering when you lost contact with your Bridge. Quite the commendation from your Captain on that mission, I must say. You served as an exchange officer aboard a Klingon K’tinga cruiser and they actually awarded you a medal after some trouble with a Romulan cruiser. What else do we have here.... you were at both major engagements with the Dominion at DS9 – the first disastrous attack and the later retaking of said station. You later took command of a contingent of ground forces at planet AR-558.... as a matter of fact, it looks like you’ve seen action at almost every major conflict since you graduated. Klingons, Cardassians, Dominion, Borg.... fascinating.”

Dent said nothing. He had heard all of this before from other officers.

“Look, Commander. I know it was all the luck of the draw with your assignments. The odds of you managing to stay alive this long is something a Vulcan or android would have to figure out. But this assignment is purely diplomatic, and that is something you don’t have a lot of experience with. Some of the crew here hold you in awe and others see you as reckless and a danger to the ship. I fall into that latter category. I need to know that you’ll keep your finger off the trigger for as long as possible if the situation goes south. Starfleet feels you need the experience anyway, and you know your way around a battleship, so you can get the best of both worlds here.”

“I’ll do my best, Captain.”

“Good. The diplomats on the Gorkon will be handling the majority of the mission. We just have to ride shotgun and throw some weight around. The Zardanians are a touchy people and we have to move carefully. The Federation can ill afford another enemy what with this Dominion War and their Frontier is of strategic value.”

“You can count on me, sir.”

“To be honest, I doubt it. What we need is a diplomat, not a soldier. You might have been born in the wrong era, Commander, but we’ll just have to muddle through nonetheless. Further briefing at 1600 hours. Get yourself settled in and we’ll talk then. Dismissed.”

Dragon
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Postby Dragon » Sun Sep 19, 2004 7:26 pm

The rest of this will be posted on fanfiction.net


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