USS Pioneer NCC - 74757

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Party Time
Episode 10 - New Home, Same Pioneers
Stardate 962307.28
MD009 2100 hrs

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Hell Is Empty and All the Devils Are Here

Posted on Fri Aug 3rd, 2018 @ 12:38am by
Edited on on Fri Aug 3rd, 2018 @ 6:33pm

Mission: Episode 4 - The Sum of Our Parts
Location: Rura Penthe - Guard Barracks
Timeline: MD002 0900 hrs
1294 words - 3 OF Standard Post Measure



May 29 2394 0900 hrs (relative time)

Varaldyr sat at her terminal. She keyed in commands and looked at the data that was being displayed. This wasn’t right. It was no joke, she was listed right there, mining engineer Varaldyr, responsible for the ore quota. She’d been on this rock for seven months. Why did she not remember any of that? She knew nothing about dilithium mining.

Yes, she was an engineer, but she’d started out in agriculture and had learnt later how to operate starships. She’d never been underground before. And she knew she’d never volunteer for service in this place. She looked at her own file.

It said she’d been wounded in battle against Brikar forces, left for dead. But brak’lul was a bitch. She’d survived, barely. Scarring was described covering her abdomen and a huge plasma burn on her back. She felt under her fur coat but there was no trace of it. There would have been, with the state of Klingon medicine. No word as to why she was sent here of all places.

‘We know what we are, but know not what may be.’ This was what might have been, with events unfolding differently. This wasn’t what Varaldyr would have wanted to be. But she was free. She could leave on the first ore freighter out of here. There was nothing that forced her to stay put and work this job, except that everybody in Klingon society expected people to serve out the term they’d agreed for no matter what.

Two problems. One, where would she go? She couldn’t get her old life back simply by leaving. And two, she’d promised this man who was in the same spot as her to find a solution for both of them. And she had to, not only because it was the right thing to do but also because they had twice the chance of finding an answer if they worked together.

Varaldyr broadened her search. There was clear evidence of more things amiss than what impacted her personally. The Klingon Empire had conquered the Brikar, so much so good. A thorn in their side gone. A prolonged war against such a minor power hadn’t been good for morale, she remembered that much. Yes, they had used superior technology and had been entrenched in hardened positions, but the full might of the Klingon Empire they should not have been able to resist for as long as they had. And in this reality, they hadn’t.

However, as much of an advantage as that was, seventy-four Klingon ships had been lost in the final assault. A small fraction of the Empire’s total forces, still many honourable deaths for those who sought them. Varaldyr had never been a warrior. She didn’t mind surviving. She minded surviving wounded and with a social standing that landed here here, however. In this case, she wondered whether death wouldn’t have been preferable for whoever this other woman was whose position she had now taken over. But she’d always been a fighter, in her own way, and on second thought, she figured her alter ego would have persevered and soldiered on, in the hopes of finding an opportunity to improve her station later. ‘There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.’

Either way, there was nothing in her file to prove either way. She’d never been in the habit of keeping a personal log, or writing down much of anything, and neither had the other her. She grumbled. This wasn’t the time to think about herself. “Focus!” she told herself.

She went back to reading the file. Revenge had been enacted. Several Brikar cities had been destroyed, along with their population. Brutal reprisals, to punish them for the amount of resistance they had put up. Varaldyr did not approve. The Brikar had been a thorn in their side, yes, but they’d put up a straight fight, as far as she could remember. Where was the honour due a formidable opponent? There was nothing in the files that explained why.

But the why didn’t matter. It was what it was, and it had drawn a condemnation from the Federation Council. Again. The Federation hadn’t learnt to keep out of Klingon affairs even after what had happened when the Klingon Empire had withdrawn from the Khitomer Accords the last time. A condemnation was an affront no self-respecting Klingon warrior, or politician, could have ignored. So relationships had worsened. This time, no open war, but trade along the border had dried up, exchange programmes had been cancelled and the Federation’s much-needed assistance in cleaning up the results of the Praxis explosion, most notably an ongoing effort to purge the oceans of Qo’noS of all the mercury that Klingon industry had polluted them with, had been halted.

Varaldyr knew how important this was. In her reality, Andorians had developed algae which thrived in tanks, filtering out mercury that was present in the water, getting heavier and heavier before sinking to the bottom, then harvested. It was genius. And it was the most efficient way to filter large bodies of water, too. It was a way to reduce future birth defects in children from the lower classes, those who couldn’t afford off-world food. Replicated food wasn’t an option for most Klingons, for cultural reasons. A similar programme had been stopped where Bajoran bio-engineers had bred a plant that sucked lead out of the soil. Again, residue left by Klingon industry.

Varaldyr had never appreciated how lucky she had been, growing up on a colony world near the fringes of Klingon space, which had only been colonised long after the Klingons had learnt how to operate their industry in a much cleaner way – which amounted to dumping their toxic waste in the system’s sun, which was fine as far as she was concerned. It’d be billions of years before that stuff came back to bite someone in the arse, at which point it would no longer be a Klingon problem.

So in summary, things were worse than before. One good thing the prolonged war had, it was a way to test new weapons, train warriors, achieve a force of veteran troops even while most of the rest of the quadrant was at peace. It was a means for those looking for personal glory to find it, or not return. It stabilised Klingon society. Without an enemy, there was social unrest.

But Varaldyr liked social unrest. Coming from the lower classes herself, and seeing the example that other peoples provided, she believed that there had to come a time where the warrior elite’s hold on power would be broken. She knew, from many examples, that cooperation often yielded better results than confrontation, even though she had never been good at it. Most Klingons weren’t, they weren’t raised that way. This was their main problem, Varaldyr was certain. ‘Such as we are made of, such we be.’

She shook her head. This was fruitless. She did not know enough about history to determine what else might have gone wrong, where the origin lay. She had to approach this problem from the point of view of an engineer. But again, for that she had to get off this rock. And she needed a way to take that Brikar with her. He knew things, he should make himself useful. ‘What’s done cannot be undone’, or could it?


Veraldyr of the House of QIr'aS
Klingon Ambassador to Cardassia, Empok Nor
PNPC Niall

 

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