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STAR TREK:BATTLE OF STARBASE S.D.L.



Part II
By Eric Szuminski


Sections:
S1 - Big Boy Blue
S2 - Into The Fire
S3 - Scheming Devils
S4 - The First Charge
S5 - The Race of Giants
S6 - The Final Showdown
S7 - Celebration!
S8 - Containing Secrets



S4 - The First Charge
Since itís first encounter with a human starship, hopes were high that the rest of the experiment would go as smoothly. However, the attack against one of their starbases proved to be a different matter. Thankfully, they had gained enough power to make it most of the way to another star. Soon, though, the humans would find them and try to stop them.
That would be their last mistake.

The first fleet had been assembled quickly with added support from P.L.S. With a large showing of four starships, including a Dominance-class Super Battleship, many have speculated that P.L.S. might have more riding on this endeavor than most. Or more to the fact, the organization might have its own starfleet. Of course, commanded by that recluse Captain Azak Vencor, whom many believe is not even human.
All speculation aside, playing on several monitors from a space probe was the first battle being waged against the Useran juggernaut. Admiral Hodge could do nothing but watch. In particular, a ship in dire need. Why wasnít anyone helping them? But he knew that answer before even thinking it. They have their own problems.

"Port shields have been destroyed! Plasma fires are spreading!" Yelled someone from somewhere.
Captain Peters couldnít see anymore, the smoke and fiery sparks from blown consoles shielded her eyes from the horrors happening around her. But being human she didnít like being blinded from the danger. Her ship had taken the brunt of the attack; but it was to be expected, her Carpelli-class Heavy Destroyer was a big target.
Another intense explosion rocked the ship, as Captain Peters tried desperately to hold on. "All hands to escape pods," she quietly said as she grabbed at a head wound. Any hope of someone hearing her through the warning klaxons and exploding systems was simply a miracle.
The last thing she saw was darkness as she closed her eyes to die, only to disappear as the V.T.F. Dragon Blade exploded in a cloud of burning fuel and gas.

"The Dragon Blade has been destroyed sir." Lieutenant Commander Negla called from her tactical post.
"Hold this course," said the captain. "Prepare to fire the main gun."
"Aye sir, but may I point out that if we fire weíll be defenseless for a few minutes." Commander Negla recited.
"I know Mrs. Negla," the captain, a clone of Captain Azak Vencor, half turned in his chair to look at the commander. "Remember, I designed it."
A barrage of energy beams from the Useran cruiser pummeled the Dominance. The shield system could be seen shimmering against the blackness of space at each shot. Still just barely a kilometer from the large ship, the warp nacelles of the P.L.S. ship flared to full power then quickly drained as a beam of intense power shot straight from the Dominanceís main deflector dish and struck the beast dead center. The beam lasted for only a few seconds scorching a deep canyon across the hull. The wound sparked and burned, but there was no indication that the Useran ship was badly damaged.
"Direct hit on the Useran ship, sir. Damage was done but power readings remain constant." Commander Negla reported.
"Time to full power?" the captain asked referring to their own power.
"Still several seconds," Negla responded. "The Useran is targeting us."
The captain left the command chair and walked to the back of the bridge where he activated a control panel. There he began inputting several commands.
The bridge shuttered from a Useran barrage. Commander Negla reported their situation, but the captainís attention was on his task.
A metal disk, just left of the panel, opened and a cord slithered out. The cord was autonomous and seemed to search for a target. It saw the captain and snaked around his body to the back of his neck; where it found a compliant port and inserted itself.
The captain jerked at the influx of power and the strange feeling. Instantly knowledge was passed from the captain to the computer and then transferred from the ship. The snake-like device detached from the captain and retracted back into its hole.
"Iíve transferred the necessary information," the captain announced, then resumed his position in the command chair. Just as he did, the ship was struck several times again by energy beams from the Useran cruiser. Panels all over the bridge dimmed for a second as emergency power fluctuated.
"We have more hull breaches, emergency fields in place. Main power and secondary power have been restored." the unjoined Trill Commander Negla happily reported.
"Commence standard attack pattern Omega 1," the captain ordered.
The U.S.S. Ghost, a Falcon-class heavy cruiser, soon joined the Dominance. Several green energy projectiles from the Useran ship then hit the Ghost. Dominance answered with a volley of quantum torpedoes.
On the main viewscreen of the Dominance a sleek cruiser, the U.S.S. Horus, commenced its own attack with a fierce sting from several plasma beams.

Captain Alvin Gelhart was monitoring the situation on his screen when he noticed the Dominance-class cruiser fire an unknown power beam, then transmit an unknown signal back to P.L.S. "What the . . .?"
This prompted him to go back to earlier scans of P.L.S. ships, most notably the three that came in to help scurry the Useran cruiser away from the starbase. Alvin definitely noted the way the ships arrived. They seemed to come from wormholes! Even when Captain Vencor came to the station his ship the Phantom Lord also emerged from what seemed like a wormhole. But also he took a look at the V.T.F. Demon Power. Just after its impulse damage, it managed to blow a chuck of debris off the Useran cruiser and bring it into a shuttlebay.
That was the key. Alvin checked on the progress of the repair time for the Demon Power. Just an hour left. He then checked the status of the ship: shields were down, personnel were away from the shuttlebay, only two guards it seemed were there- outside the bay.
Gelhart typed in some commands into his controls, rigging a transport into that shuttlebay. He stood up, and noticed Admiral Hodge was away. "Commander Roberts, you have the bridge."
"Aye sir," a young woman answered from a station then went to the command chair.
Captain Gelhart left the command center, and after a turbolift ride to his quarters he gathered a phaser and a tricorder. It was a short walk to a transporter room.
As he entered, there was a scheduled maintenance crew working on some of the pads and the control booth. The crew chief moved towards the captain.
"Sir?"
"Get your crew out of here!"
"But sir, weíre-"
"Now!" Gelhart barked.
The chief quickly got his team out of the transporter room leaving Gelhart alone. He immediately went to the control station and loaded his transport program he had made from the command center. As he walked onto one of the pads he checked his phaser and tricorder. He readied himself and heard from the control station a beep. "Energize,"
Captain Gelhart dematerialized off the pad . . .

. . . and rematerialized right next to the chuck of debris. The black hull piece reflected light in a way making it shine brighter than the lights themselves. Gelhart pulled out the tricorder and began taking readings.

"Iíve got an unauthorized life-form in the main shuttlebay." An ensign reported.
A bridge command officer went over to the ensign and saw a Starfleet officer taking readings with a tricorder. "Alert security," he ordered.
The ensign proceeded to do so.

Captain Gelhart heard the door to the bay open and immediately drew his phaser; then fired as the first guard came into view, he fell unconscious. The other guard ducked behind the wall as the doors finally opened. He took a quick unaimed shot, and then ran inside as Gelhart took cover from the loose beam. Once inside and behind a support pillar the guard fired another shot just over Gelhartís head.
"Security is on their way, if you surrender now you will not be harmed." the guard warned.
"Something strange is going on, and Iím going to expose it!" Gelhart yelled, then fired a return shot from where he heard the guard.
Silently, the guard spoke to the computer, "Initialize a fast site to site transport just behind the intruder. Authorization: Pi-Gamma-Two-Alpha." The guard began to disappear in a stream of blue and white light.
Gelhart glanced up to fire again, but saw the shimmer of blue light coming from behind the pillar. He quickly tried to figure out where the guard might go, but was too late as the guard reappeared behind him. Gelhart tried to swing around for a shot, but was suddenly stunned. His limp body crashed to the steel deck with a thump with his phaser and tricorder falling simultaneously with a clank to the deck.
"This is Sergeant Cordan, intruder has been subdued. Medical support is needed."



S5 - The Race of Giants
Its form was unimaginable, yet there it was floating needlessly in space only the confines of construction manifolds kept it in place. A huge space vessel nearly completed filled the panoramic view port of Captain Vencorís topside office. Here he led the creative ship designing team of Phantom Lord Systems. He was currently working on a new design when his communicator chimed in.
"Psionic transmission coming in sir," Lieutenant Jannerís voice said.
Azak closed the view port, and waited until it had sealed before activating the receiver bionic link-port. The snaky cord appeared and went immediately to Azakís neck. A surge of power and knowledge flooded his brain causing him to violently jerk upward. In that split second Azak gained the knowledge about the battle with the Useran ship, and the effect it was having- or no effect rather.
He felt drained, even after the infuse of knowledge. Slumped back in his chair, Azak opened the view port once again. He stared at the monster just out his window. Its simple yet enormous design was indeed something to behold, but it was missing something. With the knowledge he just gained, Azak knew that he needed to add a powerful cannon to it. Phaser banks and torpedoes was not enough to devastate the Useran juggernaut.
With most of the baseís power and construction personnel diverted to the Trebuchet-class planetary siege cruiser, scraping up enough people and power to build a cannon secondary system would be impossible. There was an alternative: Starbase-S.D.L. They could have the cannon finished just in time to attach it to the ship.
Vencor tapped his communicator, "Vencor to Phantom Lord, one to beam to the bridge."
Captain Azak Vencor appeared on the bridge of his flagship. "Plot destination at Starbase S.D.L. and open a wormhole."
The Phantom Lord began moving away from its dock and once it was free to navigate headed away at full impulse. From the bow of the saucer section, from the small navigation disk a surge of energy emerged. The burst flew forth and seemed to hit a wall when it splashed open producing a wormhole just a few hundred meters out in front. The wormhole was large enough just to surround the Phantom Lord as it headed in and disappeared. The wormhole closed right behind and a second later opened again in Starbase S.D.L. space with the V.T.F. Phantom Lord emerging big as life.
"Open hailing frequency," Captain Vencor ordered.
"Frequency open,"
"This is Captain Azak Vencor requesting permission to dock."
"This is S.D.L. spacedock control, you have permission to dock in bay five." A voice said over the hail.
Then suddenly Admiral Hodgeís voice was on, "Captain Vencor, I must protest the actions of the crew of the Demon Power. Captain Gelhart has been taken hostage!"
This struck Azak as very odd. "What? You must be mistaken admiral."
"Captain Gelhart claims that he was abducted from his quarters and put into a detention cell. How do you explain this?"
With a sigh, "Uh, Iíll beam over at once," said Captain Vencor.

Admiral Hodge was waiting for Captain Vencor in one of the larger transporter rooms, one capable of transporting ten people at a time. At the moment the room was empty except for the transporter operator and the admiral.
He looked over to the operator. "Isnít he ready yet?"
Suddenly the transporter was activated and an image started to appear, it was Captain Vencor.
"Itís about time captain."
Vencor promptly stepped off the transporter pad. "Admiral, this business with Captain Gelhart must be a misunderstanding."
Admiral Hodge led Captain Vencor out of the transporter room and out into the corridor. "Well, maybe we can resolve this."
They started for the Demon Power docked at bay number one. The corridor was mostly vacant, so they wouldnít be heard. Admiral Hodge leaned closer to Vencor. "You told me this matter with the Userans wouldnít interfere with base operations."
"I also told you that any of your crew members found in unauthorized sections of any P.L.S. ships would be arrested." Azak reiterated.
"But Captain Gelhart told me that he was resting in his quarters when suddenly he found himself in a cell."
Azak stopped the admiral. "Do you really believe that?"
Hodge tried to avoid Azakís stare. "I have to admit, that does sound a bit far fetched."
Azak nodded and they continued.

"Let me out of here!" Gelhart screamed from his cell.
Captain Vencor and Admiral Hodge then entered the detention center. Vencor nodded to the guard, who immediately deactivated the cellís security field. Gelhart stepped out very cautiously.
"Admiral, what kind of action are you going to take against this traitor?" Gelhart asked pointing at Azak Vencor.
"Well, I think after the captain explains why you were put in there. Iíll consider any action to take pending the explanation."
Azak felt the attention of the two men focus on him. Whatever he was going to say, it had to sound good. "Well, we didnít abduct the captain from his quarters. He was found in the main shuttlebay. Which is a restricted area. And we had his memory erased for that time."
Gelhart began to shake his head.
"Well, do you remember-"
Suddenly, Gelhart lunged at Azak, he was close enough to land a right hook on Azakís cheek. This caught Azak totally off guard and he went down.
Security was on Gelhart in an instant.
Admiral Hodge kneeled down to help Azak back to his feet. "Iím so sorry. Captain Gelhart will be punished for this."
Azak checked his jaw and acknowledged Hodgeís statement. He then moved past Hodge and up to Gelhart. With a gesture from his hand the security officers moved away leaving Gelhart by himself. With that same hand, Azak grabbed the front of Gelhartís uniform and slammed him into the bulkhead. Azak got real close to Gelhart, his breath pushing past his face. "You listen to me you little worm. No matter what you think of me, remember this: Iím doing it all for you and the Federation. There are things you donít understand, things you shouldnít understand. Leave it to the professionals."
And with that Azak let go, Gelhart dropped about an inch back to the floor. Azak looked back to Admiral Hodge who was simply stunned. "Heís yours. I wash my hands of him."

Outside the detention center aboard the Demon Power, Azak watched Captain Gelhart be taken away by Starbase S.D.L. security. Gelhart was sullen and drawn back, which was uncommon for him, as he was led away.
Admiral Hodge rejoined Azak. "You coming here just as Captain Gelhart was arrested wasnít just coincidence, was it?"
"No, I came here to ask you to do something for me?"
Admiral Hodge gave out a short chuckle. "If I refuse will you bash me against a wall?"
Azak smiled. "That probably was unnecessary, but I donít think anything less would have gotten through to him."
"Hmm, well anyway, what do you need?" asked Admiral Hodge.
"I need you to construct a cannon."
"A phaser cannon, a disruptor cannon? Sure, whatever."
Azak shook his head. "No, a really big cannon."

(Authorís note: In trying to keep this thing as short as possible but not skimping on traditional Star Trek action or story, or rather, lack thereof, I present to you:)



S6 - The Final Showdown
The people of Starbase-S.D.L., although connected to the battle by numerous advanced Voyager series probes, had only seen or heard bit and pieces of information. Many wondered how the battle was going, or if this was the last moments of the Federation. Truth was, the battle was going very badly. Nearly fifteen starships had been destroyed in the first and second fleet. But there was hope. Only recently had the public been told of a new starship design project started by Starfleet. The Annihilator project as it had been called was rumored to be completed. Many speculated it was just a highly advanced warship much like a Prometheus or Sovereign-class vessel. Some thought it might be a "shipbomb" that was nothing but a remote controlled ship packed with high explosives.
Nothing prepared them for what loomed outside the starbase. Three times the size of a Sovereign-class vessel, two thousand and forty meters, the U.S.S. Annihilator manages to dwarf even the famed U.S.S. Atlantis and comes close to the starbase itself. It was unlike anything previously designed by Starfleet, some believed it has a peculiar alien look about it.
Earlier in the day, after the megacruiser appeared from its construction yard no doubt, a large tug emerged from the starbaseís own construction dock pulling a large device of some kind. It went out to the Annihilator and left the device right under the large ship. For the next six hours starfleet crews were seen outside the ship attaching the device to the Annihilator.
Probably a new sensor module.
"Super cannon in place sir," called an ensign from his station.
Admiral Hodge was almost too busy with fine tuning the ship to his own specifications to reply to the ensign. "Okay," he simply said. Admiral James Hodge was busy getting used to configuring the holographic displays he would need in the up coming battle.
Seated to the left and right of him on a raised dais were his first officer and second officer, admirals Mike Brown and Justin Seabury. They were chosen as first and second officer, respectively, for their proficiency in handling large crews and advanced technology. Admiral John Groves will be commanding the portside attack wing of starships responsible of escorting the Annihilator into the combat zone, Captain Azak Vencor the starboard.
"I wish we had more time to get used to these systems," said Admiral Seabury.
Admiral Brown added with a smile, "Oh I donít know, this is kinda fun. I remember when we were tweaking the inertial damper on the Atlantis so when we engaged the quantum drive the crew wouldnít be squished against the aft bulkheads."
"Yeah, well, I will never get used to all these clones and androids. P.L.S. sure has been busy." Admiral Hodge chimed in as he finalized his settings.
One look around the bridge, Admiral Brown could see many sets of twins, triplets, and other multiples. The disturbing thought though was that fact that there were many more elsewhere in the ship. And with so many stations on the bridge there were literally fifty people manning stations. All but three were assigned to weapons and tactical; the three were reserved for science, communications, and a new one, which Captain Vencor had said to stay away from for their own good. Admiral Seabury would be operating as helmsman and Brown monitoring the general situation.
"Time to departure?" Admiral Hodge asked.

On board his flagship once again, the V.T.F. Phantom Lord, Captain Vencor monitored his fleet being moved into position next to the Annihilator. He noticed a ship falling back.
"V.T.F. Phrixus reporting a verteron leak from their wormhole device, warp core has failed." Vencorís first officer reported.
Vencor slammed his fist into his command board. "Damn, bring in two reserve ships to take the Phrixusí place."
"Aye, sir."
From two closing wormholes, a Lauder-class light destroyer and a Zaanstad-class heavy scout emerged and joined the fleet.
"Okay, Ben, give me the run down." Azak ordered referring to the size and strength of his fleet.
Captain Ben Trimpe held up a datapad and prepared to speak as though he were giving a speech. "Starships OíNeil, Recluse, Intimidator, Demon Power, Carey, Firebird, Sentinel, and, of course, Phantom Lord stand ready."
"Excellent, time to departure?" Vencor replied.

Admiral John Groves was also monitoring his fleet move into position and plotting a course to the Useran cruiser.
"Course set, awaiting final orders from Admiral Hodge," reported Grovesí helmsman.
"Any new developments with the fleet currently attacking the Userans?" Groves asked turning to his first officer.
Commander Jevlin was hunched over the tactical station rising up behind the admiral like a bridge of its own. The familiar Galaxy-class bridge layout had been refitted with numerous new stations for weapons and ship status, but the unique arch of the main tactical station had remained. "Weíre receiving new information now, admiral." Jevlin paused. "The Sovereign has managed to disable the Useran main weapon," he said with a cheer, but his mood soured as the next piece of news flowed in. "Two more starship have been destroyed."
Groves let the information seep in, but concentrated on the task at hand. "Coordinate with the rest of the fleet, weíre ready."

Admiral Brown turned to Hodge and said, "The fleet stands ready, admiral. Shall I give the order?"
Hodge glanced at both his friends, and the bridge crew. "Put me on ship wide and general hailing frequency. Itís time to make a speech."
Admiral Brown activated the comm system and signaled Hodge.
"Attention ships and crews of the Annihilator task force," Hodge started as he stood up rising even higher on the dais. "We are poised on the edge of a great battle. Many new technical strides have been made in order to bring you this pending victory, but even more sacrifices have been made."
"We must remember those who have fallen before us, to prove to them that they did not die needlessly. I have great confidence in this ship, the Annihilator, but she canít fight by herself. It takes a good crew of men and women to do their jobs so we may win. And I know we can do this, we have to. For the sake of those in the Federation and this quadrant we must do this. End of speech." Hodge finished and sat back down in his chair. "Prepare for warp."

A tall black figure stood sheathed in glistening armor imposing to all who served him. He stood alone on the command deck aboard his new experiment. The attack on the human starfleet was proving to be more of a mistake with each wave of starships. And one of them managed to disable the molecular infusion device!
No matter, collecting the spare energy from the floating field of broken starships would be enough to get power to the hyperdrive for a jump out of this star system and back home.
He was content with being alone when one of those spiteful things appeared carrying a tray of food for him. Its frail looking body covered in cuts and bruises was a testament to the torture it has endured. Its elongated head was likewise covered in scraps and blood trails, with one of its eyes gorged out.
"Anything else, sire?" the creature garbled with a synthesized human voice.
He took the tray, and immediately shoved the poor creature down to the metal deck. "Get out of my sight!"
The creature scooted away on all six limbs fearing for its life.
"Status report!" he barked.
A snide looking being perked up and presented to the man an information tablet. "All systems report ready, sire."
"Good," he replied, calming down a bit. "Anymore starships in the area?"
"No sire, but we are detecting a fleet massing near the base we attacked several dítions ago."
"You mean "days", you decrepit moron." The man corrected.
"Yes, sire, my speech is still unpolished."
The big man grabbed the officer by the neck and pulled him close. "Youíd better get it right before I start looking for a new first officer." He released the officer, sending him backwards unbalanced.
"Activate the hyperdrive, I want this star system behind us before that fleet arrives."
Suddenly, warning klaxons sounded and lights began going crazy as something happened.
"Enemy fleet within primary firing range!"

The huge U.S.S. Annihilator slowed from warp speed just in time to see a hail of energy beams and projectiles hit seven starships including the Annihilator; but shields held, barely.
The starships were still out of firing range for their phasers and torpedoes, so they would have to endure barrage after barrage until they got in range.
"We need to divert their attention away from the Annihilator." Admiral Groves reasoned. He activated the comm system. "Groves to Hodge, Iím planning to send my wing in a flanking maneuver to divert their attention. Do you concur?"
"Negative Groves, hold you position. Your fleet wouldnít last long without our protection." Hodgeís voice responded over the hail.
"But sir, if we can split the offensive-"
"I said negative Admiral Groves, hold your position!"
Groves closed down the hail in frustration. "Helm, break formation. Come to course 300 mark 15. Engage full impulse."
Grovesí Galaxy-class cruiser broke formation with the Annihilator with his fleet following. The communicationís officer suddenly began receiving inquiries as to why they were breaking formation.

"A small number of ships have broken off the main group, sire," reported another of his underlings.
"They plan to out flank me," he figured. He saw also the large vessel occupying the center of the fleet. "Thatís an old Borillian design. No doubt improved with this galaxyís impressive weaponry. Perhaps my clone had something to do with it?"
He would show that pretentious piece of genetic waste just how to command a starship. "Concentrate all weapons on that."
"But sire, if we engage the hyperdrive we can be gone from here."
"Follow my orders or be executed!"
"Yes sire," the underline responded and initiated the order.
The lumbering Useran vessel began turning. Its destroyed main weapon came into view, but was nothing more than a black smudge on the bow of the ship with a massive hole where the dreaded weapon once was.

"The Useran ship is turning to engage us, sir."
"How long until we are in range to fire the main gun?" Admiral Hodge asked.
The main tactical officer replied, "Weíre still several klicks out, at this speed, we have a minute."
"What of Admiral Grovesí fleet?" Admiral Hodge asked.
Brown replied. "Theyíre just now engaging the Userans."
"Okay, well I guess thereís not much to do now, but let loose Captain Vencorís fleet?" Admiral Seabury spoke after slightly adjusting their heading.
Admiral Hodge looked at Admiral Brown for any sign of disapproval, but all he got was a simple nod. "Okay, send him in."
A communications officer suddenly called. "Sir, we are being blocked by the Phantom Lord. They seem to be transmitting to the enemy vessel."

"This is Captain Azak Vencor to the Useran vessel. Stand down or be destroyed." Azak said over the secure comm channel.
There was a raucous laugh coming over the channel as the reply. "Hmm, that name sounds familiar. Oh, wait, itís my name too." Then suddenly the image of Azak Vencor appeared on the viewscreen. Though the face looked the same, it was different. His eyes were deep dark pits, with shadow encompassing them. A long scar curved from his forehead down to his beard-covered chin. His dark hair was tousled and grayed.
"Itís nice to see you again,"
"The feeling is not mutual. I say again, stand down or be destroyed." Azak repeated.
"You dare to use against me what youíve stolen? You know I wonít back down, itís not in my nature. Itís not in our nature."
"I only give you this warning for the sake of your crew. I could care less where the hell you are, but I will destroy your ship."
"Then I will die and my crew with me."
The channel closed, replaced with the Useran ship becoming larger in the viewscreen.

The range ticked down. "Weíre within range," Admiral Brown said with a cautious look on his face.
Admiral Hodge looked over to Admiral Brown, "Have all ships engage their escape vectors."
"Aye sir," Brown replied and inputted the commands.
Admiral Hodge looked from his first officer over to the main cannon operator. The movement seemed to take forever, but ended in a word: "FIRE!"
Then time speeded up, as the operator punched in the necessary commands. The main gun activated without a hitch. Power was transferred from the warp drives to the main cannon array in a few short seconds, then BOOM! The entire ship shuttered from the enormous release of harnessed energy as the beam lanced out from the emitter towards the vile Useran ship. The other Starfleet vessels had only a second to hit their warp drives and get out of the blast area as the beam struck the enemy ship at near lightspeed. Grovesí fleet escaped the initial blast which engulfed the Useran ship and vaporized it in a second, it was the secondary explosion which sent a few ships tumbling. The blossoming detonation hurled itself towards the Annihilator, a barrier of vaporized plasma and metal. With the fleet already escaping to warp, it was the Annihilatorís turn to escape death.
The image of the Annihilator against the background of the resulting explosion was the last thing the nearby probe saw before it too was consumed by the incoming shockwave.



S7 - Celebration!
A party was being held aboard Starbase-S.D.L. and everyone was invited. In a large holodeck, a program of old New Yorkís Time Square was running with colorful streamers and pieces of colored paper falling from the sky. The scene was of the happiness that occurred after the Earthís Second World War had been won and people flooded the streets of New York to celebrate. Intertwined in the chaos were thousands of Starfleet officers and crew celebrating their victory over the Useran threat. Each were smiling, laughing and dancing to the music of the era.
But then the music slowly quieted down followed by the crowd. The people parted away from a spot and there appeared a raised podium with stage. Admiral Hodge climbed up to the podium with admirals Brown, Groves, and Seabury following and stepping to the side.
"Attention, attention. I know we have a lot to celebrate about, but thereís someone I think we should thank. The man behind the Annihilator, Captain Azak Vencor!"
There was a loud round of applause from the crowd of citizens and Starfleet personnel. When Azak didnít appear on the stage, the crowd quieted down.
"Donít be shy, Azak, come on out." Hodge encouraged, his voice booming over the crowd.
But there was still no sign of him. Hodge looked puzzled, and feeling the combined stare of thousands of people he backed off the stage. He had the music raised again and began prompting people to start celebrating again. But instead of joining them, Hodge left the holodeck for the command center.
He tapped his communicator. "Computer, locate Captain Azak Vencor for me."
The computer took a moment. "Captain Azak Vencor is not on the station. A ninety-five percent chance he has returned to Phantom Lord Systems."
"Yeah, thatís what I figured too."



S8 - Containing Secrets
The mysterious Section 31 had finally caught up with Azak at his station. Three starships were parked in orbit around the excavated asteroid. With three men dressed in black uniforms confronting Azak in his office.
"Youíve managed to sneak by us for quite some time now. Very impressive, but thatís over with now. And weíre here for the technology youíve created. Keeping it in your hands is too dangerous," said one of the men.
"Itís our job to protect the Federation, you understand," another added.
Azak did nothing, he was standing with a phaser keeping the three invaders at bay.
"We could take the technology from you with force, but thereís no need for that. Weíre all enlightened humans, weíre better than that," the third said.
"You might be, but Iíll defend myself." Azak cautioned.
"Weíre not after you, we want your technology!"
Suddenly, a new figure began to materialize in the middle of the argument. The unsuspecting Admiral James Hodge appeared. He immediately noticed the three men as being Section 31 agents. Reports of their existence had been spread by Dr. Julian Bashir of Deep Space 9, but of course nobody else had seen an agent. Hodge also noticed the phaser being moved to point at him as well.
"Bad timing admiral, you shouldíve stayed away." Azak said, then fired the phaser. Admiral Hodge fell to the floor stunned. "And you three have given me no choice."
The three agents braced for their own stun, but it never came. Instead Azak slammed his palm down on the little blue button on his desk. A terrible sound started echoing throughout the base, a snowballing crash as power was being stripped from relays and conduits. Deep inside the asteroid, the hypermatter reactor shut down, its energy vented into space like a giant cloud of vapor. The warp reactor cores stopped and lights began to dim.
"I suggest you get back to your ships before it starts getting cold." Azak told the three agents. They had no choice but to beam back to their ships.
In the darkness, curtailed only by the nearby starlight flooding in through the panoramic viewport, Azak went over to Hodgeís motionless body and knelt down. He tapped the communicator once. "This is Cap-, this is Azak Vencor, beam Admiral Hodge back to his ship."
He stood up and stepped back as Hodge was beamed away. After that, Azak went over to his desk where he opened a drawer and pulled out an ordinary rock. It looked like it had been melted, with smooth sides and a dark color to it. Azak then tapped his communicator, "Phantom Lord, one to beam up."

THE END











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