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Making Contact (Part 2)

Posted on Sun Apr 30th, 2023 @ 5:54pm by Captain Mikoto Misaka & Lieutenant Shandro
Edited on on Sun Apr 30th, 2023 @ 5:54pm

1,909 words; about a 10 minute read

Mission: The Search
Location: DS9, Quarks Bar

Previously on Star Trek Ermiana:

"You think I would lead you and your crew astray?!" The Gul replied softly with a raised brow as he looked back over the railing to the ground floor of the bar, his eyes focused on the same table. The table with Bajorians. "What little you know." He replied softly. "You think that loyalties comes with the uniform you wear and the ship you command? You are sadly mistaken, Captain." He looked over to Shandro, their eyes locked, before focusing back over the railing at the table again. "Come here, Captain. Tell me what you see."

And now the continuation...

Mikoto approached him and looked down. "I see a bar run by the Ferengi in a Bajoran station" she stated simply. "It would appear that many people of different species are in here enjoying themselves."

"And that table... right there." He said, pointing to the one he was watching the entire time. "The one full of happy Bajorians. Laughing. Drinking." The Gul focused back on Mikoto. "If you are so sure what kind of person I am.. tell me, Captain. What do you think goes through my mind when I see that table? Given your experience with Cardassians and all."

It seemed like a trick question. "Shame" she stated simply. "I know what your people did to the Bajorans, I know that most of your people felt shame for what you did to them." She told him simply. "I don't believe that the Cardassians are evil like some say, I think that those in charge made some very misguided and bad decisions".

"And those shameful Cardassians are put to death, Captain. Marked as traitors. And before you give me some nonsense about a fair trial, let me remind you of how the Cardassian Judicial system works. It's a joke. All to make the government look a lot better and to remind the people what happens to those who go astray." The Gul looked intently at Mikoto, almost angry, as he continued. "There was nothing misguided about it. The Central Command wanted Bajor and its people. And so they ordered it's military to take them at all costs and remind them who is in power. Cardassians are driven to believe that Bajorans, those people at that table, are beneath them. Ants under our boots. We are to do with them what we please because they are nothing."

Shandro let out a sigh and was about to speak, but was quickly stopped by the Gul with a hand raise.

The Gul continued. "Starfleet Officers see only enslavers and evil men and woman who wear this uniform. And don't try to tell me that your high Starfleet morals ensure that you don't because we know better than that. The Maquis was taught those same ideals and they still turned away because they saw the same thing and insisted something be done and was given silence in response." He pointed to the table again as he continued, lowering his voice. "I look at that table and I see Bajorans who escaped a camp run by Cardassians. A camp I served in. I see that table and I see... the best decision I ever made because I helped them escape."

Mikoto stood there silently, she hadn't expected that from him. Safe to say she didn't have any words that she could use to respond to him.

"I freed those people and I have never looked back, Captain." The Cardassian whispered softly. "I look down at that table, not to because I hate them, but because I know there are other Cardassians onboard who would jump at the chance to harm them. They don't care about station security or Starfleet's presence. All they see are the same people they were taught were beneath them who need their guidance to survive." He looked over the railing and back at the table. "That woman, sitting down in the middle, is my lover and the mother of my daughter." He quickly looked back at Mikoto. "By choice, Captain. So, you see, my caution is not for me. It's for them. This uniform is just a smokescreen. A show for those around me who don't know the truth." He reached under the table and removed a small PADD he hid there with adhesive, before discreetly handing it to her. "My real uniform is just like yours... but grey." He said with a slight smirk.

"Wait, you're Starfleet? You might have opened with that!" She replied crossing her arms clearly not amused. "Why the get up?"

"Because, Captain, in order to maintain my cover in the Obsidian Order I have to appear to be the loyal Cardassian Officer you see before you. Yelling and screaming at my lesser whenever in earshot of other Cardassians and potential informants." The Gul replied softly as he continued. "My file... what you have in your hands... is only available on that PADD and by my handler at Starfleet Intelligence. You and Shandro are the only ones onboard your ship who will have this knowledge. To everyone else I must appear to be a Cardassian assigned to help with ulterior motives."

Mikoto sighed. "I understand. So, how about your name?" She asked.

"Why do you think I gave you the PADD?" The Cardassian replied with a smirk before taking a sip from his glass of Kanar.

Mikoto raised an eyebrow as she looked down at the PADD. "Ok then. We depart tomorrow. You should report aboard before then." She paused. "Also, if you wish to keep this illusion up, I will have to assign you a security detail and prevent access to sensitive areas..." she explained.

"Understandable." He replied softly. "The next time you see me you will refer to me as Gul Jalak Rin, assigned to you and your crew by Cardassian Central Command, to aid in the recovery of the Bismarck. Assure them I am to provide you with safe passage and ensure that any Cardassian ship doesn't get any ideas in firing upon you. Don't forget to add in I made no promises on that. Make it seem like I am not all that interesting in catching the Bismarck alive. Shandro will relay what I said earlier... that the Cardassian ships hunting the ship have orders to destroy it. If you can manage to get evidence of this then it will work in your favor. I'll deny it, of course, but I'll aggressively admit to it with the same Cardassian smugness."

Mikoto nodded simply in response. "Hopefully we can prevent anymore conflict. I agree to your terms and this little deception" she stood up after finishing her tea. "Lieutenant Shandro will organise you and your family to come aboard."

"Is this her first time dealing with our branch of Intelligence?" He asked, looking over to Shandro who only shrugged in return, before the Cardassian looked back to Mikoto. "There is another thing, Captain. Consider it a personal favor."

"Oh?" Mikoto replied.

"I would like to spend some time with my family. On your Holodeck. If you can place mine and her quarters close to one and, somehow, figure out a way to allow us to go in one without being seen together it would be much appreciated." He replied softly before smiling a bit. "I don't often get time to spend with them and the owner of this bar insists on charging more then necessary for his holosuites time and I can't sneak them in without someone noticing. I don't trust anyone in his place, especially him."

Mikoto smiled. "I'm sure that can be arranged. The Ermiana has several holodecks, and on such a large ship its easy to not be seen entering or leaving one." She explained.

"Captain... a Cardassian Gul going into a holodeck with a Bajorian woman is bound to get some attention. And, not that I expect this to happen, but I always need to move under the assumption that someone onboard may relay my actions on your ship. There is always a possibility communications in this sector is going to be intercepted. If that happens my cover in the Obsidian Order could be burned and my family will be in danger." He replied sternly. "You may not understand the reason behind my deception, but its vital to Starfleet Intelligence and it provides valuable information the keeps Starfleet Officers, and many others, safe. It must be maintained for now."

"I assure you that once you're on my ship, you'll have the full protection of The Federation, your family too. I will ensure you get your holodeck time undisturbed and unseen..." she told him.

"Thank you, Captain." He stood up from the table and finished his glass of Kanar. "Zodrac Kosh is in your debt." As he walked off he saw the Ferengi, carrying the new bottle his requested, heading toward the table. The Gul immediately grabbed the bottle from him as he passed. "Took you long enough, worm!" Before heading out the door with a smirk.

Shandro stood there, reaching into his pocket and placing a few strips of gold pressed latinum on the table, before turning to Mikoto. "I told you he could be trusted. Maybe even liked. All you had to do was hear him out."

"Indeed. I just hope he can keep any Cardassian ships at bay. A Galaxy Class Starship would be a huge prize, not to mention boasting rights for any Gul that has bested one..." The captain responded.

"I hate to break the news to you, Captain, but if the Ermiana were to fall to a Cardassian ship it would not be the first. So, this ship and crew, would not be much of a prize because their goal is the Bismarck." Shandro replied softly. "He'll keep those ships from turning their weapons on us, but he can't keep them from wanting to destroy the Bismarck. The Cardassians have a legitimate reason to want it destroyed, whether the Maquis are behind it or not, they are within their rights to deal with it in their own way. The goal is to get to the Bismarck before they do so they don't get a chance to destroy it in our presence." He crossed his arms over his chest. "Kosh is right. We need to find a way to to reveal their orders on our own in order to give us the upper hand. We know, if the crew is still onboard, they wont risk a confrontation with Starfleet by just destroying it outright in our presence so the only way they can succeed is by catching up to the ship before us and making it look like they had no choice. If we can prove the crew is still alive, or that the Bismarck is willing to surrender, they wont have a choice but to allow them to live."

"Then it's a race to find the Bismarck first. If I recall my ancient history, a similar event happened on Earth also with a ship named Bismarck" she paused. "It seems that we have our work cut out for us Lieutenant."

Mikoto stood up. "Well, you coming? There's no time to lose."

Posting by

Captain Mikoto Misaka
Commanding Officer

Lieutenant Shandro
Chief Intelligence Officer

Zodrac Kosh/Gul Jalak Rin


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