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Chapter 2

Posted on Tue May 3rd, 2022 @ 6:44pm by Fleet Admiral Luzol Targaryen & Admiral Janule Tua & Captain Willian Targaryen & Commander Galatea & Captain Nathan Bishop & Commander Ash Randall & Commander Nathan Hawkins & Lieutenant Dylan Blake & Lieutenant Bissiv th'Zaanaq & Lieutenant Cyrus Marner & Lieutenant R'relle & Chief Petty Officer Harris Zim & Lieutenant Jardok

Mission: Waiting for the End
Location: Bridge, Starfleet One
Timeline: 3189-03-15, 08:30

Captain Willian Targaryen sat calmly in his chair as the Enterprise continued at Warp. They were, at least according to Galatea, approaching their rendezvous with the Starfleet starship USS Stargazer - the flagship of Federation Battle Group Omega. Willian had a lot of experience with Battle Group Omega. In their time it was established as a Federation Rapid Response force designed to handle humanitarian and threat force response on behalf of the Federation. Originally, they had been focused on combating the Borg but their role enhanced over time. At one point he himself had commanded the Battle Group from the Bridge of this very ship.

"We are at the coordinates, Captain," Galatea announced from her traditional workstation.

The Captain glanced at his wife, who was sitting next to him in the guest chair on the Bridge, "Slow to one third, Lieutenant th'Zaanaq."

"Aye, sir." The Andorian replied as his hands moved swift across the Enterprise's helm. He was still getting used to this way of flying a ship but he hasn't had too many problems since being appointed as the ships new helmsman.

The massive starship slowed from high warp back to standard impulse, the stars becoming mere pinpricks in the darkness of space from their long travels in an instant. Willian looked closely, surprised to see that there was nothing there waiting for them. He looked over his shoulder, "Galatea, I expected to see a starship not empty space. Where are they?"

"They have been here for some time, Captain. Please, open hailing frequency 47," she looked at Commander Hawkins and Willian nodded in agreement.

Once Targaryen had given him the nod of approval Hawkins opened the channel, like the others he was intrigued on what they'd discover and how they'd be greeted after their unsuccessful encounter at Earth.

"This is Commander Galatea of Federation Security contacting the Starship Stargazer," she said authoritatively.

There was silence on the other end for several moments until a voice echoed through the Bridge speakers, "Commander Galatea, We have you on our screen now. Please identify the vessel that you are traveling aboard."

"Stargazer, I am aboard the Federation Starship Enterprise, 1701-Gamma. We are requesting deactivation of the security shield," Galatea typed on the workstation as she spoke.

"Enterprise, the security field will be deactivated when we have confirmation of your code transmission. Please hold position."

Willian looked up at the Artificial Intelligence, "Galatea?'

"Don't worry, it'll turn you as gray as I am," she typed at the controls quickly. "Transmission commencing."

"Stand by," the voice said from the distance of space. It felt like an eternity, but it had only been less than a minute when they responded. "Galatea, deactivation of the field will commence immediately. You are clear to proceed, please follow your present course. Do not deviate."

Willian kept staring at Galatea as she continued to speak, "We're starting our approach now. Helm, take us to navigation point alpha 94. One third impulse."

"Understood. Maneuvering into position now." Biss replied not taking his eyes off his console.

"Focused scan of that location," the Captain ordered as the Enterprise slid gently through space.

Galatea interrupted, "That will not be necessary, Captain."

"I feel it is," the Captain answered as they continued on course. "Initiate scan."

Lieutenant Jardok - who had been a passenger on the voyage of the Enterprise to Ni'Var - nodded from the science workstation. "Initiating Scans," he answered as his fingers adjusted indicators on the screen. It was only logical for the Captain to order a scan of an unknown and he wondered why Galatea was so opposed.

As they approached the coordinates they saw it, the shimmering effect of a cloaking device deactivating before them. In its place a massively large Federation starship appeared with a large saucer and four highly sophisticated nacelles hovering nearby. Amazingly, the nacelles were not connected to the ship in any way from what he could tell.

"My friends," Galatea said in a showy way, "welcome home."

Merian Class Starship

"What the blue blazes? I've not seen anything like that ever." Cyrus was shocked and amazed at the same time. "What's Medical like in that ship? She is beautiful."

Hawkins too was impressed as they drew closer to the Stargazer. Though futuristic in their naïve opinion the ship still shared several key elements they were familiar with, most notably it's historic name. It was reassuring despite the ramification of the Burn and seven hundred years time difference between them that the Federation hadn't forgotten its own history and idealism.

"Truly unlike any ship I've ever seen!" R'elle said. "I wonder, do they still have counselors in Starfleet?"

"We can see about arranging a tour for you, Doctor," Galatea answered as she typed on the workstation interface. "And yes, Counselor, Starfleet still employs Counselors. They are just not as common as they once were."

From his seat, Bishop looked at the massive Starfleet vessel. He let out a low whistle as he looked the ship over. "It's massive!" He said in a classic understatement. He looked closer at the ship and then to Galatea, "The nacelles, they don't appear connected to the ship. How does it move?"

Zim manned his station quietly, but that did not mean he was not paying attention to what occurred around him. He saw the ship on the screen and wondered why they would need or want another ship. Furthermore he wondered what Galatea meant by welcome home. This ship was all the home that he needed, that is unless he go to his homeworld of course. He looked up toward the center of the Bridge and Captain Targaryen. "Captain I am receiving word from all over the ship, they would like to know what is going on. I would suggest that you address the crew sooner rather than later. It seems that being in the dark about things is making some of the crew antsy as it were."

The Chief Engineer of SF1 looked up from her engineering station as the Stargazer shimmered into view, nodded a couple times as if its appearance answered some, unasked, question and then went back to what she had been doing. There would be answers to more questions coming and none of those answers were going to make anyone very happy.

Willian looked over to the Chief of the Boat and nodded in agreement, "Yes of course, Chief."

"Intraship channel is open, Captain," Galatea announced helpfully.

The Captain looked over his shoulder and nodded, but wanted to be a little more direct with her than he could on an open channel. "All hands this is your Captain speaking. After six months of struggle and challenge we have successfully made contact with the Federation and Starfleet. Off the port bow you will see the Federation Starship Stargazer, command ship for Battle Group Omega and our first connection with our Federation family. More information will be forthcoming, but until then please remain at your posts. Targaryen out."

"Scans have concluded of the Starfleet vessel, Captain," the Vulcan explained. "Sensors confirm that the vessel is beyond the engineering capabilities of any ship of our era. Sensors show neutronium-alloy fiber hulls, holographic containment walls..."

"Please prepare a detailed report, Lieutenant, and send to my datapad" Willian ordered. "Hail the Stargazer."

"Admiral Tua has already hailed us, Captain. She is requesting permission to come aboard," Galatea reported.

William rolled his eyes. He had hoped to visit the Stargazer itself so that he could see how far the Federation had come. Instead they seemed more interested in keeping him limited. "Grant her request."

A second later Admiral Janule Tua appeared in the center of the Bridge of Starfleet One. She was tall with styled, curled hair and dark brown eyes that probed the air around them all. She smirked, "Been a long time since I was last on this ship. It hasn't really changed."

"I'm Captain Willian Targaryen, Commanding Officer of this Starship. May I present the Officers and Crew of the Federation Starship Enterprise," he introduced, "operating as Starfleet One."

"I know all about you," she said with a renewed smile. "One of my previous hosts, the first actually, served on this ship for a while. His name was Anek Tua, but you probably wouldn't remember him. I have to be honest that I knew El-Aurians could control their appearances, but I never expected you to still be so young. I really didn't expect to see the rest of you. When the Enterprise, as Federation One, launched on its generational ship mission I did not expect to see all of you still aboard it. No one's heard from you all in centuries. Strange you're not an Admiral anymore either. You outranked me when you launched on your mission."

Galatea interrupted, "Admiral, perhaps it would be best if you, the Captain, and Fleet Admiral Luzol met in private to speak."

She nodded, "You have always been a wealth of good suggestions, Galatea. Admiral, Captain, shall we?"

"You can speak freely before my crew, Admiral," Willian reassured.

That response was the main reason that Zim respected and loved his Captain. In a situation like this secrets could break the crew. It is best to stay on the open and tell the crew as whole everything. He planned on telling the various Chief Petty Officers a little more information. The fact that they had been jumping through hoops for this future Starfleet rubbed the Chief the wrong way. Unless something was revealed to be of use soon, he would make his feelings known to the Captain.

"Alright then," the Admiral answered succinctly as she pondered the ship that surrounded them. "Normally I would insist, but I know that will get me no where on this particular ship. I must, however, insist that you use discretion with everything that I am about to say. Your ship and crew have been through a lot on their mission, Captain, and I would prefer them not to be too overwhelmed by finding out too much too fast." She turned to look at Biss, "And, seeing as how Galatea has identified your helmsman as a courier, I can bet you know more than you're leading on."

Tua began, "I have heard the rumors about the mysterious ship that has taken on the Federation's mantle in this region. Centuries old, but the crew determined, with a haphazard assembly of modern weapons and equipment that had been scavenged. Trouble is you didn't just get my attention - you also triggered the Emerald Chain for your troubles. Since Minister Osyraa has been otherwise occupied, she put one of her best agents, Director sh'Vreshaa, on finding you. Not long after they were blasting subspace with reports that Admiral Elria was being transferred from one of their prisons to another. Trouble was that the Admiral has been dead since the Burn."

"After some discussions with Federation Security we were able to arrange a deep cover Federation Security Agent to be assigned to the site, the Svian Colony, to make contact," she glanced up at Galatea after saying it. "You have to understand that I thought you all were rumors too, a ploy for them to find the Stargazer and the rest of my Battle Group. You have to understand that my Battle Group is all that remains of the Federation's forward arm, the rest of the fleet is scattered and the majority are on permanent patrol of Federation Headquarter's airspace."

"Where is Headquarters?" Willian asked. "We approached Earth a few months ago and were nearly shot out of the sky."

Admiral Tua looked sad for a moment and let out a depressed sigh, "Earth is no longer in the Federation. Nor are Andor, Ni'Var, my homeworld of Trill, so many others. The only Core System left is Tellar and they haven't even been chatty with us recently. I really am sorry to have to be the bearer of such bad news."

"Galatea beat you to it," he said with a hint of dark humor.

"I'm sure she did," Janule replied looking at the older woman in Federation black. "There will be plenty of time for more later. For now lets see what we can do about getting your ship up to par. I won't make you go through your story right this very minute; instead, you can send up your logs when you get the chance and I'll review them while we're on course to meet up with the Daystrom."

Willian glanced at his wife, who answered for them, "We will cooperate."

"Good," Tua answered, "because I see no need for me to interfere with your command and I don't intend to. This is your ship, your crew, and lets keep it that way."

From his chair Willian looked around his Bridge, "Anyone have anything for the Admiral before she goes home?"

Ash looked up from her workstation, eyed Admiral Tua for a few seconds, then went back to work without saying a word. She couldn't tell if Admiral Tua was really there or if they were talking to a holographic avatar but didn't think it mattered, one way or the other. A hologram could blow smoke up their collective backside just as well as the real thing could and, to that point, the Chief Engineer had nothing to say or ask. The thought occurred to ask if she could have her phase cloak back because the current Federation obviously wasn't respecting the various treaties banning its use but didn't think now was the time and, besides, she could just make another one, in short order, now that she figured out how to user her peoples technology.

R'elle really didn't know what to say. All she knew was gone, she had no idea how Cait was doing and the federation was in shambles because of this burn thing. She wanted to trust these people, but part of her had reservations. The best thing to do was take it a step at a time and deal with it that way. At least for now!

After a few moments the Trill woman nodded, "I really am excited to get to know each of you. Welcome to the 32nd Century." With a deft tap of her badge, the Admiral returned to her ship and left the crew of Starfleet One behind.

Galatea read off of her console, "I have the coordinates for the Richard Daystrom, Sir, shall I transfer them to the Helm?"

Willian sighed inwardly at the empty space before them, his gaze catching the shimmering hull of the Stargazer not far beyond. It rotated, the disconnected nacelles coming closer to the body of the hull as it spun, it was gone in the blink of an eye. "Is it too late to say no?" He asked his wife in a whisper.

"We wanted to find the Federation," she answered, "this may be our only chance."

"Engage," Willian ordered defeatedly as he slunk into his chair. "Galatea how long until we meet up with them?"

"Eighteen hours."

The Captain rolled his eyes, "Looks like we're left to our own devices. Let's keep an eye on things, but try to relax in the interim. I have a feeling that for the first time in a long time things may be shaping up."


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